Links 11/30/2022

Camels battle it out in Qatar beauty contest BBC (David L)

Two Minerals Never Before Been Seen On Earth Found Inside 17-Ton Meteorite LiveScience

Rarely seen ‘gustnado’ weather phenomenon captured by NT mates playing golf Anthony L: “The dangers of golf.”

Emperor Charles V’s secret code cracked after five centuries Guardian (David L)

A Machiavellian machine raises ethical questions about AI Financial Times (David L)

The Brain Uses Calculus to Control Fast Movements Quanta Magazine (David L)

Death by Crowding JSTOR (Micael T)

Thai monks fail drug tests leaving temple empty BBC (resilc)

In classical Chinese philosophy, all actions are collective aeon (Anthony L)


Where Does All the Cardboard Come From? I Had to Know. New York Times (Kevin W)

The Toxic History of Color Atmos (Micael T)


China COVID lockdowns: Here’s what Wall Street is saying about the economic risk Yahoo! Finance

Here’s how the US shouldn’t respond to China protests Responsible Statecraft (resilc)

Apple Turned Off Protest Communication Tool Right Before Anti-Lockdown Uprising in China Summit

Chinese companies set up in Singapore to hedge against geopolitical risk Financial Times

European Disunion

From Politico’s morning newsletter:

ORBÁN’S MOMENT OF TRUTH: European Commissioners Valdis Dombrovskis, Didier Reynders and Johannes Hahn will today unveil a proposal to freeze around €7.5 billion from the regular EU budget earmarked for Hungary — as Playbook previewed last week.

Dangling a carrot: In parallel, the Commission plans to recommend that EU countries approve Hungary’s recovery plan — the contract detailing how Budapest would spend €5.8 billion in grants, if it ever receives them. Disbursements under that plan will be contingent on the country implementing 27 key reforms.

No photo op: European Commission President Ursula von der Leyen will break with tradition and won’t be traveling to Budapest for the usual recovery plan junket, our colleague Paola Tamma reports.

The ball is now with EU countries in the Council, where both decisions are likely to pass by qualified majority. The Czech Council presidency is working to convince Hungarian Prime Minister Viktor Orbán’s government to drop vetoes on an €18 billion aid package for Kyiv as well as a minimum tax on multinationals — Budapest has been blocking both files in an attempt to force Brussels’ hand.

Old Blighty

Neverwhere Brexit Britain after Singapore-on-Thames: Switzerland or Silicon Valley? Gerhard Schnyder (guurst)

UK will need a new generation of politicians without #Brexit Wars baggage before UK-EU relations find a new harmony BEERG Blog (guurst)

New Not-So-Cold War

What to expect in Russia’s winter offensive in Ukraine Indian Punchline (Kevin W)

Ukraine War Day #277: Apocalypse Tonight! Awful Avalanche (guurst). Important. On conditions in Ukraine.

* * *

Washington’s Carthaginian Peace Collides With Reality Douglas Macgregor (chris)

Ukraine Russia War Status update – Col Doug Macgregor YouTube

NATO commits to future Ukraine membership 9News (Kevin W)

We humiliated ourselves’: Sweden’s bid to join NATO meets continued resistance from Turkey France24 (furzy)

* * *

Feet on the ground in St Petersburg: first impressions Gilbert Doctorow (guurst)

* * *

Can Europe keep the lights on? Financial Times. A lead story. Admission against interest.

Qatar to supply Germany with LNG as EU seeks secure energy options Financial Times. Kevin W: “So will the EU insistence on depending on the spot market over long-term contracts be changed now?”

Europe Remains Russia’s Biggest Diesel Buyer OilPrice (resilc)


A Good-Will Government Was Possible in Israel New York (David L)

Flight of the Predator: Jet Linked to Israeli Spyware Tycoon Brings Surveillance Tech From EU to Notorious Sudanese Militia Haaretz

Big Brother is Watching You Watch

Chinese ‘gait recognition’ tech IDs people by how they walk Associated Press (resilc)

Computer Repair Technicians Are Stealing Your Data Bruce Schneier (David L)

Traffic Jam: Chinese Academics Find Starlink Satellites Routinely Break Space Safety Rules Sputnik (Kevin W)

How Capitalism—Not a Few Bad Actors—Destroyed the Internet Boston Review (Paul R). From earlier this year, still germane.

Imperial Collapse Watch

As Haiti Unravels, U.S. Officials Push to Send in an Armed Foreign Force New York Times (resilc)


Two Oath Keepers, including founder, convicted of seditious conspiracy in Jan. 6 case NBC


Five cars rented by Biden’s Secret Service burst into FLAMES in Nantucket Daily Mail


Denouncing Trump-Fuentes Is a Ploy, Not a Principle Atlantic (resilc)


It really was young voters who did it for Democrats Ryan Grim. Working Families Party acting as a spokescritter for “progressives”?

Senate passes bill to protect same-sex and interracial marriage in landmark vote CNN. Kevin W: “But it was impossible to do the same for Roe-Wade. /sarc”

Our No Longer Free Press

Twitter rolls back COVID misinformation policy Reuters (furzy)

The Bezzle

Crypto exchange Bitfront shuts down Reuters

More On The Crypto Scam – “There’s A Sucker Born Every Minute.” Moon of Alabama. Nice shout-out, plus revealing detail on Ukraine involvement.

‘I Don’t Even Know How To Code’: FTX’s Sam Bankman-Fried Has Long, Candid Talk With Vlogger CoinTelegraph

Sam Bankman-Fried says he only has $100,000 left in his bank account after FTX collapse: report Business Insider

FTX-backed DEX Serum calls itself ‘defunct,’ promotes community fork The Block

Influencers Were Paid By Google To Promote a Pixel Phone They Never Used arstechnica

Apple’s iPhone Pro Shipments May Fall 20 Million Units Short of Estimates Reuters

A Florida Woman Is Suing Velveeta Claiming Instant Macaroni Was Slow Insider

Class Warfare

The Tragedy Of America’s $3.5 Trillion In ‘Extra’ Savings Heisenberg Report (resilc)

Spanish coastguard finds stowaways on ship rudder BBC (resilc)

Biden, Congress race to avert economy-shaking railroad strike The Hill

Biden Breaks His Promise, Betrays Rail Workers The Lever

Politics Today: Interview with Wolfgang Streeck Crisis & Critique (Anthony L)

Antidote du jour. Another member of Chet G’s photo gallery from Centre Wildlife Care annual adoption/sponsorship campaign. This is Sonic the hedgehog.

And a bonus (furzy):

See yesterday’s Links and Antidote du Jour here.

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  1. Antifa

    (melody borrowed from White Rabbit by Jefferson Airplane)

    Two and two is five now
    The sky is never blue
    Up is down sometimes and somehow
    From a proper point of view
    What is logic
    It’s a free for all

    Algorithms and disruption
    Token tasks token rewards
    Tolkien touched on true corruption
    In the throne rooms of the lords
    What is freedom
    To the marching hordes

    Get in line for your implants
    You will enjoy social control
    You’ll own nothing and you’ll be happy
    Sit back we’ll fillet your soul
    You’re the product
    You are the goal

    We have known you and we own you
    We’ve heard every word you’ve said
    We touch all your thoughts and feelings
    We know what you love and you dread
    Remember we are in your head

    In your head . . .

    In your head . . .

  2. Old Sovietologist

    Von der Leyen let the cat out of the bag when she said over 100k Ukrainian troops had been killed during the conflict with Russia.

    So much for the ineffectiveness of the Russian miliary.

    Will she be denounced as agent of the Kremlin?

  3. Toshiro_Mifune

    Apple’s iPhone Pro shipments may fall 20 mln units short of estimates
    This is being pinned on labor unrest in China but it really has to be noted that the lower model iPhone 14s were seeing lower sales numbers than were expected. So labor unrest in China alone may not explain it all.

  4. Lex

    VDL made a big oopsie and said that Ukrainian military casualties were above 100,000. Then deleted the tweet, then edited the video of her saying it and reposted on the internet. Kiev is mad because that’s classified information. But like the defensive lines in Donetsk, the charade is getting harder and harder to maintain.

    I wish I could get over how angry it makes me that Americans pretend to care about Ukrainians.

    1. timbers

      But the MSM (was it NYT? Not sure) says US has achieved a “strategic victory” in Ukraine so we are still indispensably exceptional plus we got those “shared values” in our Collective Western garden compared to everyone else who are the jungle out there.

    2. schmoe

      Old Sovietologist said that she said 100K “had been killed.” If “casualties,” the NYT recently said both sides suffered ~ 100K “casualties.” so that would be nothing new. What exactly did she say? I am not seeing her comment in the links above.
      100K Russian/allied casualties sounds correct (75K wounded, 25K killed), but that sounds low for Ukraine. How many Ukraine/Azoz were lost in Mariupol alone?

      1. Yves Smith Post author

        No, she said killed, see at 0:18:

        However, from what I can tell, Ukraine is having vastly higher deaths to casualties than is typical in modern wars. Have you seen a single Ukraine video or story about heroic medics or field hospitals? Scott Ritter says that soldiers talk about the golden hour, that a wounded soldier needs to be treated in the first hour after serious injury to have improved odds of survival.

        My impression casualties is that are = to or even lower than deaths, an appalling outcome. I recall being somewhat gobsmacked a while back when a Russian top official (maybe Shoigu?) reported as of then Ukraine deaths at 60,000, casualties at 50,000. That is massively out of line with the normal rule of thumb of one death to every three casualties.

        So I’d guesstimate Ukraine casualties at 90,000 to 100,000.

        1. NotTimothyGeithner

          This is also a large scale artillery conflict with GPS. The artillery observers know exactly where they are when the put eyes on a target versus relying on the best map they have available. They have range finders too. Prior to satellites, artillery schools didn’t rely on luck, so it takes three shots to hit a target and a bit of trig. When the first shot hit, people in the target area could in theory run to relative safety. This was when artillery was king of the battlefield. The process is just so much faster now. Once they hit the target, the observer can bring hell down again and again with no work, even if the observer has to relocate. With drones, the artillery observers can see much more, so they can keep going. They don’t have to retreat. The Russian artillery observers should never need a third shot to destroy their target.

          1. Polar Socialist

            About the golden hour, there are indeed claims by the Russians that according to intercepted radio traffic Ukrainians in Bakhmut area have serious difficulties evacuating wounded which is leading to increased casualties.

            Regarding the artillery conflict, I saw today something akin to confirmation for a thought I’ve had for some time now about the conduct of this war: Russian troops would like to have assault guns to support them. They do like the BMPT Terminator, if they can work with one, but the best would be a self-propelled and well-protected 152 mm howitzer hitting enemy positions from point-blank range with pin-point accuracy.

            Tanks are too expensive and not really optimized for that task, even though that’s what they are mostly used for now for the lack of anything better.

            1. JBird4049

              >>>but the best would be a self-propelled and well-protected 152 mm howitzer hitting enemy positions from point-blank range with pin-point accuracy

              Interesting. That is exactly what the Soviets and the Nazi used in the Second World War, only while a 152mm was used, more often the assault gun was armed with something in the 75-122 range with the size tending to go up each year. Although there were monsters like the German Brummbär and the Soviet ISU-152

          2. MT_Wild

            I’ve been trying to avoid watching too much of the war p*** footage that gets uploaded these days. But the one thing that stands out is just how brutally effective the small grenades or mortar shells dropped by the smaller drones are in destroying single or small groups of soldiers.

            Individual soldiers or even small groups of soldiers would not have stood out as artillery targets in the past. But now they are being hunted down with these smaller drones. It’s also kind of telling about where things stand with the availability of munitions. If they were lacking grenades i don’t think they’d be using them to target single soldiers unless It’s just so the drone can fly home empty.

        2. vao

          Have you seen a single Ukraine video or story about heroic medics or field hospitals?

          If you are talking about uplifting images of medical personnel saving wounded combatants and interviews of recovering soldiers gratefully acknowledging the dedication of the Ukrainian red cross — I have not seen any.

          But there are videos of first responder teams dealing with wounded on the front lines. Warning: this is indeed ghastly. Perhaps a physician in the NC readership can tell from those images how appropriate or how bare-bones the Ukrainian battlefield medical support is.

          I have also stumbled on a few poignant clips of mutilated Ukrainian soldiers re-learning to walk with artificial legs and the like. Young guys — their lives ruined.

        3. David

          As far as I know, the three-to-one figure is largely a rule-of-thumb used by military historians for evaluating casualty figures, based on experience in the two World Wars. Reality varies enormously: in most nineteenth century wars, if you were seriously injured, you were as good as dead. By 1914-18, if you were defending and were wounded you stood a very good chance of surviving, if you were an attacker, you were much more likely to die, simply because you were farther from medical help. I’ve been told that the ratio steadily improved with the advent of helicopter evacuations and better medical care, as well as training of all soldiers in first aid techniques. Ratios of 6 to 1 or more were common in Iraq. (This doesn’t mean more people being wounded, it means more people surviving who in the past would have died). Modern body armour and helmets reduce the risks of death, but can’t protect absolutely, thus those who would have died without them often still suffer trauma. So you need to be very careful with numbers.

          How good a guide that is to the conflict in Ukraine I have no idea. One thing that’s obvious is that the UA has little capacity to evacuate its wounded, so many who could otherwise have been saved will wind up dead. In addition, conscripts are more likely to be casualties in the first place, and to be less well trained (if they are trained at all) in battlefield medicine. In addition, I really wonder about the lethality of some Russian weapons: if you’re anywhere near a thermobarbic weapon, you’re surely dead.

          1. Polar Socialist

            I remember reading an article in the late 80’s about how advances in weapon technology (more, but smaller pieces of steel in the air) and field medicine (faster stabilization and evacuation) had changed the “modern battlefield”: while soldiers were much more likely to get hit than previously, they were also much more likely to survive than previously.

        4. Ed S.


          I did see a brief story on France24 today on UKR medics (link below). The reporter mentioned in the introduction (0:09 – 0:12) that the fighting in the area was “killing or mangling hundreds daily” – an inadvertent admission of the true situation?

          One medic notes that most injuries that they see are from “mines, mortars, or artillery” and very few from head to head combat.

          Overall, it’s a somber report – not anything heroic.

      2. Lex

        She did say killed. She also specified “officers” in the unedited clip. I assume that’s a slip of the tongue/non-native language issue rather than a clue that losses are much higher. Though I suspect that the KIA are at least twice as high as her number. It was on me not using language precisely. The video was on TG very early this morning (US EST), so I assume she made the statement today and after it would be linkable for this post.

        1. David

          I wonder whether she was thinking in several languages and got confused. In English, the distinction between Officers proper and Non-Commissioned Officers (Corporal and above) is clearer than in some other languages. In her native German it’s Unteroffizier, and in French Sous-officier. So the figure might be for “Officers and NCOs.” If that’s true, then total casualties are probably at least twice as much.

  5. Stephen

    Ukraine and the west: Russian Roulette.

    I have not yet watched this video by Unherd with John Mearsheimer so cannot comment on it but readers / contributors to this site may be interested in it. Appeared earlier today in my email feed so was unable to send it in by email in time. The write up summary is a quicker return on investment than the video.

    Listening to John Mearsheimer early this year was the original impetus that crystallized my own doubts about what the west is doing in Ukraine. Normally, he tends to see China as the priority threat to contain though: probably like many other readers to this site I am very wary of that perspective too! We should be seeking to get along with China. Has also swallowed (or feels the need to voice) the narrative of Russian military incompetence, which I also think is false, just as claiming their overwhelming omnipotence would be too.

    The comments are mainly depressing. Limited ability to hold up a mirror to the west’s own behaviour. I used to subscribe payments to Unherd but stopped because their editorial position became anti Russian earlier this year.

    1. timbers

      If Hillary can call Putin a Nassi on national media why can’t I call the US taxpayer funded Ukraine Regime what it is on social media w/o the “Safety Team” deleting my post?

    2. Carla

      @Stephen — thanks for this. I have found Mearsheimer pretty persuasive, to the utter disgust of all of my “progressive” friends…

      1. Bsn

        Yep, me too. Speaking with a fellow professor of history, when I mentioned these earlier Mearsheimer videos on the history of the conflict, he said in passing that Mearsheimer’s “right wing” and was a conspiracy theorists. I found M’s arguments and documentation as reasonable. Debates end when someone uses “conspiracy theory” as a point of argument. Funny, I don’t hear many conservative friends using that term, except sarcastically of course.

        1. Karl

          Mearsheimer admitted years ago that few in the US foreign policy establishment agreed with him on Ukraine. He also said that one who did was Henry Kissinger.

          On the subject of HK, surely he is disgusted with how the security architecture he constructed, particularly with the USSR and China, has been systematically dismantled by neocons in both parties over the last twenty years. He expertly played China off against Russia. Now both countries are aligned by common security interests against the US. Was Kissinger just ineffective playing the inside game over these decades? Or was he a quiet participant/enabler? Don’t know. Whatever his role (and he’s been a very active influencer/consultant at the highest levels for decades) he must be a haunted man.

          He said this in the Fall 2022 issue of NOEMA, after Kiev repulsed Russia’s initial attack last March: “Regardless of how this war ends, Russia’s army has lost its aura [of invincibility should it invade Europe]. That realization will affect diplomacy from now on.” He went on to say that the armies of Germany, Poland and Ukraine will have “a significant role in Europe.”

          Replacing “Russia” with “USA” in the above quote seems to reflect the current reality of the situation. And, the countries he mentioned seem powerless to play much of a role at all. The fact that Kissinger could (from today’s vantage point) be so wrong speaks volumes about him and the whole ecosystem of foreign policy experts he inhabits.

      2. Stephen


        I sense that he couches his arguments to persuade “mainstream” audiences. So accepts the idea of a Russian first nuclear strike within Ukraine as a possibility even though it is impossible to see why on earth they would do that, as well as Russian military incompetence. Not sure if he really believes that or chooses not to be too shocking to prevent zombies from switching off.

        The interviewer is deeply exasperating and ill informed though. Sums up the state of most western political commentary, Naked Capitalism excepted! Has clearly swallowed the narrative and not questioned it. Still, the BBC would not even talk to John Mearsheimer.

  6. lyman alpha blob

    RE: Here’s how the US shouldn’t respond to China protests

    “The Chinese got themselves into this mess by stressing how effective their independent, non-Western handling of the virus has been, by resisting the importation of more effective Western vaccines, and by not vaccinating the elderly at sufficient levels.”

    On what basis have Western vaccines been determined to be more effective, other than wishful thinking on the part of Western pharmaceutical companies? Given the disastrous results in the US, one would think that would be hard to say with a straight face.

    1. Pat

      Hey this a country that cannnot or will not admit that the Sacklers were just more effective drug dealers with a well marketed highly addictive but not entirely effective. product. Do you think they want to admit that they spent as much as they did on the vaccine equivalent of poison chalice.

      1. caucus99percenter

        From Sassoon to Sackler: the U.S. allowed one of its oligarch families to do an Opium War on America herself.

        I’ll bet Chinese historians did not see that one coming.

    2. Stephen

      As you no doubt realize, precisely the same way that western arms have been shown to be so superior to Russian ones in Ukraine. The relevant industrial complex and its paid for politicians plus future career seeking public officials have deemed it so.

  7. zagonostra

    >Twitter rolls back COVID misinformation policy Reuters (furzy)

    Musk said on Oct. 29 he would set up a content moderation council with “widely diverse viewpoints”.

    Why does Reuters article end with quotations? There is a subrosa innuendo that Twitter will push it’s own agenda, that it will no longer provide information based on the “speed of science.” Diverse viewpoints is nothing other than a euphemism for pushing a specific perspective devoid of intrinsic truthfulness.

    This whole mess with what can and cannot be said about CV19 (mis)information has exposed the weakness of the 1st Amendment, that it can be short-circuited by an emergency, as history has shown over and over again. Democracy has not been able to rein in the power of a centralized powerful elite/gov’t, what we have now is, what the Italian philosopher Giorgio Agamben calls a permanent “state of exception.”

    1. Garrison

      The quotation is probably because it’s literally something Elon said, but then didn’t deliver on.

      What’s the weirder issue, is that while Elon’s being lorded as finally bring about a place grown-ups can actually discuss things now without fear, and people who want to talk about COVID (so their pre publish studies can circumvent other gatekeepers, or hock their wares) the discourse well is getting poisoned.
      There will certainly be more disinformation than information, with little repercussion or risk to reputation, and a lot of it will be much more conducive to dissemination.
      Twitter is nothing if not full of useful idiots.

      Even in the political bias realm, “left wing” accounts are getting axed, despite whatever relaxed moderation claims, or widespread “clemency” Elon might be trying to convince everyone about.
      What’s largely happening here are the troll networks raid other accounts and create a deluge of reports, or misreport or represent something.

      This is all without Musk really staking out a free speech position in China.

    2. Yves Smith Post author

      I hate to tell you but this is not a First Amendment issue. Twitter is a private platform. It can limit speech any way it pleases. There is a big argument in media and political circles that Twitter is the town square and therefore needs to hew to the First Amendment, but that’s not what the law says.

      Where the First Amendment would come in, and there is apparently evidence of that, is the former Twitter, as well as FB etc censorship was the result of government pressure.

      1. Garrison

        I don’t think I mentioned the First Amendment anywhere.
        It would seem to be obvious the First Amendment doesn’t apply in China.
        in haste, you might have misread my comment.

        Even this vague government “pressure” wouldn’t seem to violate the First Amendment, as that specifically says “congress” and “make no law,” and there are a series of laws with judicial presidents already on the books about disseminating violent, pornographic, slanderous, or contractually bound information.

        The bigger issue, is, that a privately owned entity, with various vague international conflicts of interest, is not going to become a neutral “town square.”
        Musk should provide more transparency before anyone goes trumpeting his leadership.

        1. Yves Smith Post author

          Please read with greater care.

          I was not responding to you. zagnostra most assuredly did mention the First Amendment.

          And you are earning troll points by depicting this site as “trumpeting his leadership”. Straw manning me is not on.

      2. Milton

        Extreme hypothetical. Twitter decides to remove and never allow blacks on the site to post. Is Twitter within its legal right to do that? I mean, Twitter is using a platform that was constructed with taxpayer money, I can’t believe a lagal ruling would back them in this regard.

        1. Michael McK

          Racial discrimination is covered by anti-discrimination laws while a group who share only an opinion are not a protected category unless it is an approved religious opinion.

  8. The Rev Kev

    “The Toxic History of Color”

    It’s easy to understand the human desire for colour as it gives contrast at what a drab world it can be. Years ago I read the story of a Vietnam vet who was stationed in a jungle camp. He said that everywhere you looked, it was all green and though green in our culture is suppose to denote life, just having green with no contrasting colours made it very depressing to look at after a short while.

    Speaking of green, this article does mention Victorian wallpaper but only briefly. In that era, green wallpaper was hugely popular and the more vivid the green the better. It was everywhere but there was a problem. To get that vivid green, arsenic was used. And that arsenic permeated the atmosphere in those Victorian homes and the damage that it did to people was incalculable-

    1. Mildred Montana

      >”…arsenic permeated the atmosphere in those Victorian homes and the damage that it did to people was incalculable-”

      Yes, I read about that in Bill Bryson’s “At Home”. It also lead to the belief among those Victorians that a “change of air” was good for one’s health. Which in many cases it probably was, though they had no idea why.

      1. The Rev Kev

        I too was struck by that chapter in Bill Bryson’s “At Home” – a book which has pride of place in my bookshelves. I wondered what the atmosphere was like in those British homes in the winter when the windows were usually sealed up. The arsenic concentration levels must have been off the charts.

        1. Mildred Montana

          I can’t say enough about Bill Bryson and how enjoyable his books are. Cover to cover they are packed with interesting facts. Well worth having “pride of place” on one’s bookshelves.

          While absorbed in “At Home” I took a little time to analyze his prose. Beside the fact that it was unfailingly superb, I noticed that his choice of adjectives and adverbs was perfect. No other word would have done.

          1. Nikkikat

            Mildred, I love Bryson books as well. For the same reason as you his prose is terrific. My favorite book was the book about the Oregon trail. He was funny and entertaining. The historical truth he lays out about the Pioneers in those covered wagons alone is worth the price of the book. Once again our teachers lied to us about most of our history.

        2. JP

          Probably pretty drafty. Homes didn’t really seal much before weather striping and kraft paper. I would think, with every home heated with open hearth fireplaces, it made the whole house more or less a big chimney sucking the air through the door cracks and base boards.

          Of course the poor didn’t have wall paper and had to do their own air sucking. But the poor burned coal in their little stoves and mercury.

    2. digi_owl

      I seem to recall arsenic back then also showed up as a “food” coloring, used to turn brown tea green so it could fetch a premium price…

        1. JBird4049

          British and American food during the Victorian Era was just full of stuff that would kill you. Much of it was known to be bad for you and was done for profit. However, the deadliness of some of what they were doing just wasn’t understood. Add the various rampant epidemics and it is amazing that anyone survived.

      1. Paradan

        Pickles, they used it in pickles, and when it came out that they were using it in pickles, the company quit doing it, resulting grey, flabby pickles. So, of course, consumers complained until they put arsenic back in, after all, it’s not like people were keeling over after eating pickles.

    3. Lunker Walleye

      ” . . .it was all green and though green in our culture is suppose to denote life, just having green with no contrasting colours made it very depressing to look at after a short while.”

      Matisse said: “One note is simply a color. Two notes make a chord and life.”

      I have used silk dyes and acrylic paints for decades and have always put the toxicity issues to the side to pursue art/craft. Setting aside chemical formulas to use natural dyes would mean another learning curve. It seems natural dyes have a lack of intensity/brilliance/saturation that I like to work with. Wonder what industries don’t have similar conundrums? Do you give up what you know works for you or try doing something perceived to be more environmentally friendly?

        1. Acacia

          Apparently, Fiestaware used uranium ore for that.

          It can also be used for photographic prints, I.e., uranotypes.

    1. Yves Smith Post author

      I don’t like sounding harsh, but that is concern trolling. In Lambert’s and my joint experience of moderating over 2 million comments, concern trolling is almost never done in good faith.

      We hoist only exceptionally good links out of comments, since readers have already seen them. The one you are flogging is not that.

      Basil Pesto had a very long comment shellacking the article and the politicized stance the author has taken from early on. He also pointed out the publication has very slanted Covid reporting, suggesting the author could not get it placed elsewhere.

      The very fact that he calls the vaccines a “genetic vaccine” is dishonest and a sign of crank-dom, as is his bogus promotion of “natural immunity” and his failure to acknowledge that getting infected will have more adverse effects on the immune system and ORGANS than the vaccines do.

      The fact that the vaccines are of limited benefit v. the recent variants and have been oversold does not mean carrying on like it’s 2019 and getting Covid is a good idea. Both the vaccine hype and article like this encourage the lay public to engage in unduly risky behavior.

      1. Basil Pesto

        Basil Pesto had a very long comment shellacking the article and the politicized stance the author has taken from early on. He also pointed out the publication has very slanted Covid reporting, suggesting the author could not get it placed elsewhere.

        It’s actually funny because I had originally made the more charitable assumption last year that he couldn’t get his Dec 2020 article that I mentioned published anywhere but Quadrant because of its unpopular, uncomfortable content (“the vaccines aren’t going to work as you’re being told” – which was accurate.)

        But his publications there since suggest he’s a True Believer in covidiot nonsense.

  9. DJG, Reality Czar

    Sounds like something from Kaputt by Malaparte:

    The Ukrainian public are already involved in discussions of the type: If our supermarkets in Kiev and Lvov should be looted by marauders, then what kind of stuff should we grab first? People are advised to go for the cigarettes and samogon [craft, or home-made booze], since those items can always be exchanged for other products. Also moist towelettes, with which many Ukrainians have become accustomed to cleaning themselves [in the absence of running water]. A mere 10 towelettes is enough to clean one’s entire body, although some people have learned to do it with only five.

    This is from Awful Avalanche,, Day 277, posted above. Yet the U.S. government is frozen and immobilized in its ignorance, still quite willing to send out remarkably lifelike playthings like Antony Blinken and Hillary Clinton to turn partisan madness into, well, real deaths.

    And then there’s Ursula “Banality of Evil.”

    Note the paragraphs in the post at Awful Avalanche about crime gangs and resentful nationalists with big guns and access to western Europe and, presumably, the US of A.

    1. Polar Socialist

      Naryshkin, the head of Russian Foreign Intelligence Service, claimed today that Poland is (with US approval) preparing for referendums in the western Ukraine. As in preparing the ground for them and sending feelers.

      If true, I wouldn’t be surprised if many locals were willing to vote for electricity, warmth, food, law and order instead of a fantasy of Ukrainian Zemlja stretching from Carpathians to Don.

      1. The Rev Kev

        Would Kiev actually let them go? I mean, that region is the beating heart of all those ultra-nationalists that have been at the forefront of this war since 2014. It would be like the Democrats letting California go their own way.

        1. ambrit

          More interesting is how will Poland ‘deal’ with the Azovs and assorted far-Right groups and individuals residing within the “Polish Protectorate?”
          Groups like the Azovs are essentially heavily armed gangs. The Poles had better be ready to deal with a wave of violent crime emanating from the newly acquired Galicia Protectorate. Why? Because, once the Russians deny the Azovs access to the Ukrainian Eastern Front, the Azovs will turn their frustrated propensities elsewhere.
          The Ukraine could soon become an European Libya.

          1. jsn

            As NATO has disarmed itself giving weapons to Ukrainians, it’ll be quite ironic when the Ukrainian refugees and Galician refuseniks are better armed than the Poles.

          2. jrkrideau

            Stepan Bandera got his start at killing people as a Polish citizen in Galicia, I believe. It will be just like old times for the Azovs and other groups.

        2. hk

          Yes, that would make Bandera turn fast enough in his grave to solve Europe’s electricity problems. He hated Poles even more than the Russians.

        3. Polar Socialist

          How would Kiev stop them? Ukraine really can’t start a fight with a NATO country now, can it?

          Seriously, though, if Poland as much as closes the border with Ukraine, Ukraine is pretty much done as an entity.

  10. The Rev Kev

    “Biden Breaks His Promise, Betrays Rail Workers ”

    In other news today, grass is green and rain is wet. Of course Biden was going to betray those workers. After all, the midterms are now behind him so he is doing what he has spent his whole career doing – punching down. It’s who he is and what he is all about. I read that he was asking Congress to take action against those railway workers which may have been to keep his hands clean. And of course Congress may just make any strike illegal – though it may be that those workers decide to simply work to rule. I have worked with railways and a lot of shortcuts are taken to get the work done. But if those railway workers just work to the rules, expect things to slow down like molasses.

    1. zagonostra

      It’s who he is and what he is all about.

      And yet he was elected and the party he represents didn’t get shellacked as was expected in mid-terms. What does that say about the ability of a corrupt system to perpetuate its hold on power?

      I’m sure most of NC readers have come across the works of Whitney Webb. Her new 2 volume book, One Nation Under Blackmail just came out, is heavily researched and footnoted, and from the reviews I’ve listened to, goes a long way of making sense of U.S. politics going back to the role of Cecil Rhodes and the political jostling that takes places behind the curtain.

      1. The Rev Kev

        ‘And yet he was elected’

        Yes, very strange that. Biden had been pushed to the rear of the pack for Democratic Presidential nominees and Kamala got thumped so hard that she went MIA. And yet in the end there they were, standing together at night in front of DC’s Reflecting Pool as the ones selected to stand against Trump with the full backing of their party.

      2. ArvidMartensen

        Call me a conspiracy theorist but I cannot see how anybody at all trusts voting machines with proprietary software, the ability to be updated just before voting starts, and secret code (?).
        The one paper ballot paper each, ticked off by an official and placed in a box under the eyes of officials and maybe representatives of the leading competing parties, is the only trustworthy option.
        Why would anyone cheat the ballot process just to get their hands on billions and trillions of dollars of money? Beats me.

        1. John Anthony La Pietra

          A good start — but IMO, any non-“leading” party which has made it through the gauntlet of [bi-]partisan ballot-access laws to be on that paper should also be at least eligible to appoint watchers (wherever they can find someone who can contribute the time) to be there as the paper goes into the box. And as the paper comes out of the box and gets tallied, too. . . .

    2. Questa Nota

      But, but, Amtrak Joe.
      Or was it lunch bucket Joe? From Scranton, no less.
      Does he take the train to his beach house? To meet with his beach friends? /s

      1. ambrit

        “Creepy” Joe has friends? I thought that he really only had “interests,” mainly financial.
        You can tell that “Creepy” Joe is a long time resident of The Beltway. He has a dog.

    3. Katniss Everdeen

      Yesterday I linked to a cnbc video that quoted scranton joe as saying that today’s railroad strike situation is “different” from the one he voted against in 1992 because this time “a majority of the unions” voted yes on his proposed solution. From Stoller’s article:

      Last week, the country’s largest rail union — the Sheet Metal, Air, Rail, and Transport Workers’ Transportation Division, representing 28,000 railroad workers — voted to reject the proposed agreement. This followed “no” votes on the deal from the Brotherhood of Railway Signalmen, the Brotherhood of Maintenance of Way Employees-Teamsters, and the International Brotherhood of Boilermakers — unions that together represent nearly 60,000 of the 100,000 union rail workers who could go on strike if no agreement is reached.

      (I’d note here that that same vote percentage, 60 votes out of 100, is considered a “super-majority” in the senate, a level of consensus so high it is considered indicative of overwhelming agreement.)

      On Tuesday’s Rising, Briahna Joy Gray noted that the Secretary of Transportation, under whose jurisdiction the railroads fall, took an extended paternity leave during the time the Port of LA had ships stacked up for miles causing a “supply chain crisis” and accompanying inflation, and no one batted an eye that he was off the job. Yet 15 days of paid sick leave for railroad workers would wreak such havoc with the “economy,” that it simply cannot be permitted, and force must be used.

      I can only hope that, if the rr workers decide to defy a congressional show of force and strike anyway (which I hope they do), america will enthusiastically support them, and not be propagandized by inevitable, bullshit claims of “facism” or “domestic terrorism” or, god forbid, Russian “interference.”

      1. agent ranger smith

        Perhaps Rubio can work with Sanders and a few “populist” Republican Senators to delay and deny the current bill-in-progress until it contains all the things the railroad workers would have wanted in a contract anyway. If they can get such a bill passed in the Senate and the House, they can send it to Biden and dare him to veto it. If they can’t get such a bill passed, maybe they can delay and deny any bill long enough that the railroad workers can go on strike perfectly legally in the absence of any strikebreaking law having been passed and signed.

        1. hunkerdown

          Not in evidence: that anyone in office legitimately wants workers to enjoy a material or symbolic win.

  11. Lexx

    ‘The Tragedy of America’s $3.5 Trillion in Extra Savings’

    Went to our credit union a couple of weeks ago to pull some money out via cash machine. The doors to the interior were wide open and some members of a (de)construction crew were moving in and out. The interior was completely gutted; it was in the process of getting a complete remodel.

    For the services I needed a physical bank for, no remodel was necessary. It was perfectly fine the way it was, I thought, and that’s when I felt a nasty suspicion bounce through my nervous system – (family blog) concierge! Nooooooo! It was only a suspicion, that I confirmed on Monday when I took in some cash to deposit to checking.

    Yep, when the remodel was complete I would be met at the door by a greeter like an overly friendly husky puppy, who would be immediately shoving his/her big nose into my business (‘It’s none of your business’) and asking me to take a seat (‘I don’t want to sit down’) until someone was free to help me. Read: Until someone on their financial services sales team was free to come out and escort me to a little cubicle, where they would close the sliding door behind us (for “privacy”), offer me a chair (‘I still don’t want to sit down’), and ask me how they can help me today?

    ‘I’d like to deposit to checking these two little checks totaling $35.64’

    ‘Okay. I see they’re signed. Let me just pull up your account information. Do you have some ID? (makes noises while the computer logs the checks and prints the receipt). Hmmmm, you have a lot of money in these accounts. Maybe we should have a chat now about how we can make your money work harder for you.

    ‘I’m not interested. Could you just deposit the checks, please? I have other errands to attend to this morning.’

    ‘How ’bout our 6 month CD? It pays slightly higher interest than you’re getting in Reverse Tier?!’

    ‘I’m not INTERESTED in the product or this discussion. May I have the receipt, please?’

    She laughs heartily as she opens the door so everyone waiting in the lobby will get the impression we were having a grand time together behind that barrier to fresh air and freedom. ‘Well, let us know if there’s anything else we can do for you here at First Tech. Who’s next?’

    I was in shock from the passive-aggressive behavior I got on the inside of my perfectly useful former bank. But when I got over it, we moved to the credit union that’s currently being gutted, where standing outside I caught the faint whiff of sulfur once again while pulling money out of the ATM. (Family blog no-no word) concierge!

    So now we’re hunting for the next bank and calculating how long we’ll be there until their CEO too starts thinking harder on how he/she can make more money off their depositors and pay for their spiffy new image of treating the lower classes “like” rich people and bending them over at the same time.

    1. Questa Nota

      You go from being a customer, to a valued customer, to a member, to being dismembered.
      That customer valuing is based on various banking industry algorithms like the old chestnut:

      80% of our depositors make 120% of our profits.
      The other 20% are dead wood and need to be nudged toward the door.
      In the meantime, keep raising those NSF fees.

      Now they have more sophisticated approaches while devaluing you in new, untold ways. Those are all done to mine through your very essence and being accounts and personal information to serve you. Just wait until the slick AI applications get up to speed. :/

    2. Michael Fiorillo

      A couple of years ago I was called at home by a bank representative (a union-started bank that still claims a progressive mantle) who gave me the same pitch.

      I told him that if he or any colleagues ever called me again I’d pull my money out the next day, which has worked so far.

    3. eg

      I took a similar call from my bank “advisor” querying a large cash balance in my chequing account. I laughed at him and said that I wasn’t interested in any of their “products” and that in any event the bulk of my investment accounts was with an entirely different bank.

      I never heard from him again and he was subsequently replaced not long thereafter.

      Eventually I am going to dangle the investment account in front of his successor and then inform them that ALL of their services will no longer be required — revenge served cold for when they wouldn’t waive the $750 fee to assess the value of our home when we renegotiated our mortgage two or three years ago. And me a customer of theirs since 1972!

      Penny wise, pound foolish …

  12. The Rev Kev

    “UK will need a new generation of politicians without #Brexit Wars baggage before UK-EU relations find a new harmony”

    The UK may have to end up waiting for another generation for this to be true. So Brexit is still a mess because of the internal contradictions of what is wanted and what is possible. And because of changes to the Brexit ideal already, you have conservatives like Nigel Farage coming back on the scene as they do not want all that they worked for bringing Brexit about being thrown away. Not after 25 years work on his part alone. And as he is only 58 years of age, he will have the strength to fight for a full Brexit for many years ahead. The boys at the Duran were talking about him the other day in a video- (15:16 mins)

    1. caucus99percenter

      If Brexiteers were far-sighted — and truly sincere about preserving UK sovereignty — they would pivot to BRICS+.

      What’s the point of leaving the EU when the UK’s NATO ties mean they still end up doing everything that US and EU elites demand?

  13. flora

    file under the Bezzle and Class Warfare:

    Saagar and Krystal had two good segments about FTX and cyrpto yesterday. Saagar lost some money. I’ll leave both links.

    Saagar LOSES THOUSANDS In Blockfi Bankruptcy | Breaking Points with Krystal and Saagar


    Short Seller PREDICTED FTX Crash Reveals Media REFUSED To Listen | Breaking Points

    IF it sounds too good to be true…. as someone once said.

    1. Michael Fiorillo

      While Krystal is usually ok or better (Ukraine coverage excepted), Saagar has always come off to me as a stereotypical Republican/Glibertarian s×+*heel, who of course would have been a vector and target of crypto snake oil. While he deserves credit for publicly owning up to his folly, I doubt it will lead him to question the rest of his mostly-misguided premises.

      1. Wukchumni

        Thankfully most of us only get one shot at being young and fantastically financially stupid, but he’s in good company with all the venture capitalist money that went bye bye, so there’s that.

      2. notabanker

        Krystal “the Dems are dysfunctional, hypocrites and not doing anything useful for their constituents but i vote for them anyways” Ball? She’s not part of the solution.

      3. flora

        One of the funniest bits for me is the green can of Liquid Death beverage next to Saagar’s elbow. That’s sort of hilarious in context. / ;)

        1. flora

          adding: borrowing short, lending long. Where else has this recently come a cropper, as the saying goes. / ;)

    1. ambrit

      If you are in a shooting war, muddy rifles will get you killed. I’ve read that this was one of the main reasons why the AK was made so “loose” and “rugged.” Sometimes, the simplest equipment is preferable.

      1. Raymond Sim

        There’s been a lot of ‘mud testing’ of various firearms on YouTube.

        If I recollect correctly AK’s are actually relatively susceptible to mud but also relatively readily unjammed when malfunctioning, and outstanding at dealing with icing.

  14. The Rev Kev

    So BlockFi is a creditor to FTX that lent to Alameda that lent to Emergent which is a shell company owned by SBF that bought Robinhood shares that were pledged as collateral to guarantee to BlockFi the loan to FTX that was used to bailout BlockFi itself.’

    I really do hope that that was all illegal that roundabout scheme. Making any part of that legal would just spoil it.

  15. Tom Stone

    I was reading that India Punchline article and trying to recall the last time an American President publicly admitted making a serious mistake and accepted responsibility for doing s
    Can you imagine Joe Biden doing that?
    ” I’m always willing to accept the responsibility but never the blame” has been the norm for American Presidents since Nixon, our last liberal President.

  16. The Rev Kev

    “Feet on the ground in St Petersburg: first impressions”

    An interesting report that. I imagine that there are a lot of Russian business people rushing out to bring products to the shelves for sale knowing that western products will no longer be able to undercut them. In some ways it reads a bit like the wild west as far as consumer goods are concerned so I suppose that it will take a few years before some brands achieve popular dominance on the shelves. And I see that Russia is manufacturing cars again (a Chinese design?) in a Moscow factory that a western car manufacturer left and sold for a song. There is talk too of Iran either sending cars to Russia or manufacturing them there so it seems that they have the capability to do so. The problem with imported fish may not be total I was just reading the other day how the Faroe Islands extended a fisheries agreement with Russia, even though Denmark made a sad face at them-

    1. Paradan

      So I haven’t seen this mentioned yet, but prior to the war, Russia had a serious labor shortage.

      Calling up 300,000 young men isn’t gonna help that situation either.

      What if they weren’t importing Iranian drones, but Iranian tech’s to fill shifts for 24-7 Russian drone manufacturing.

      1. The Rev Kev

        They may be able to plug that gap with people among the several hundred thousand refugees coming from the former Ukraine.

    2. Polar Socialist

      Yes, the new Moskvitch brand cars are actually Chinese. The first series, as fas as I know, are even assembled from Chinese parts. Gradually the production will be completely local. It was deemed the fastest way to kick-start the factory (previously owned by Renault?).

      Iran has been interested in Russian car markets for a long time but they are competing in the cheapest class against Russian Lada brand cars. Due to all customs and taxes they are slightly more expensive than similar Russian cars, so they don’t do well. Iran is hoping to come to an agreement with Russia lowering the costs or opening factories in Russia, if that fails.

  17. Wukchumni

    Its not all bad news… dept.

    You never really know how a wildfire season is gonna go, we had all the makings of another potentially devastating one, with the drought melting the meager amount of snowpack out quickly & rising temps, but Prometheus & Co. could only manage 1/6th of last year’s numbers, Cali-lujah!

    The areas i’d weedwhacked in the spring now look like a manicured golf course thanks to early rains (with a few more feet of snow falling in the High Sierra starting tomorrow) and that means its time to burn one, er actually 3 burn piles i’ve been adding to since my last old flame in April.

    I like to build em’ wide-not high, so they are around 8 feet wide and 3 feet tall, which will burn for about 10 minutes of intense 10 foot tall flames and by 20 minutes in I can approach the sides with a shovel to push in the wallflowers that need urging to dance in the ring of fire, about 30 minutes from lit match to that’s all folks.

    The ashes & whatnot will be hot for another dozen hours, but it doesn’t matter as everything in the surroundings is green now, if i’d lit it in August, fire would’ve spread everywhere in a 360 degree arc-and they’d arrest me. There is a season for everything.

    Buckeyes are common here from 1,000 to 4,000 feet and they go dormant in July and play dead from a looks standpoint, its an outlier tree in that most everything else is dying, but they are bucking the trend by being the only trees which you see young and old ones, you don’t really see any younger oak trees of any species here, for instance.

    It’s most showy in May-June with what looks like peeled bananas in the guise of petals, and it drops its signature seeds in the fall and this year is the most i’ve ever seen by a wide margin, each of them ranging from the size of a walnut to the size of a 6 year old’s fist.

    They root from this seed that largely stays above ground and the tree will be in cahoots with dozens of others that fell one fall.

    1. Raymond Sim

      On the other hand air quality here in Davis is off-and-on sucky, apparently because of fireplaces and woodstoves. My Corsi box is now charcoal colored. Wildfires imparted a more attractive mahogany hue.

  18. Wukchumni

    Sam Bankman-Fried says he only has $100,000 left in his bank account after FTX collapse: report Business Insider
    $100k is just about right for seed money for SB-F’s next venture…


    Stationary tricycles that each has a screen that plays nothing but kids videos and you know how they like to watch the same one 147x, now they can get rid of the baby fat too-toot suite!

    1. Mildred Montana

      >”Sam Bankman-Fried says he only has $100,000 left in his bank account…”

      That’s called lying by omission. Where are his millions?

      And by the way, who has ever heard a 1%er bragging about his or her reduced status unless they are expecting lawsuits?

  19. flora

    Thanks for the Useful Idiots twt. I think the first organized push in MSM about woke identity politics was during the GFC and continuing after O bailed out the banks. (Think I’ve got that timeline right. ) Interesting correlation in time with what Finkelstein’s saying. imo.

    Hill’s noted quote is a non sequitur to the situation, but is instead a deflection. My 2 cents.

    “ If we broke up the big banks tomorrow — and I will, if they deserve it, if they pose a systemic risk, I will — will that end racism? ”

    – H. Clinton

  20. Wukchumni

    (Chant not currently heard on any campuses of higher learning}

    ‘Hey, Hey JRB, how many student loans did you kill today?’

    1. Pat

      I’m waiting for the catchphrase to appear about Democratic betrayal from this election. While the issue may not be as general as NC’s beloved “where’s my $600”, I figure the disappearance of promised student loan forgiveness will fuel top contenders.

  21. voislav

    Matt Binder’s Scam Economy has a discussion with Sergey Vasylchuk, who is behind the crypto donation charity Aid for Ukraine (mentioned in the Moon of Alabama post). According to him donations processed through FTX totaled about 1 million dollars and crypto was almost immediately exchanged for hard currency to spend on aid. They apparently lost some of illiquid coins and NFTs they were unable to sell when FTX crashed.

  22. Wukchumni

    One bubble makes your assets larger
    And low interest rates makes your savings small
    And the ones that Greenspan gave us
    Don’t do anything at all
    Go ask Alan
    When the dominoes fall

    And if you go chasing bubbles
    And you know they’re going to blow
    Tell ’em a put stroking nonagenarian
    Has given you the dough
    Call Alan
    When the market goes into a flat-spin low

    When the men on the Fed board
    Get up in Jackson Hole
    And you’ve just had some kind of mushroom
    And your mind is moving low
    Go ask Alan
    I think he’ll know

    When logic and proportion
    Have fallen sloppy dead
    And the White Knight is talking backwardation
    And Dow Jonestown agrees “full speed ahead!”
    Remember what Ayn’s acolyte said:
    “Heed the Fed. Heed the Fed”

    White Rabbit, by Jefferson Airplane

  23. Mikel

    “How Capitalism—Not a Few Bad Actors—Destroyed the Internet” Boston Review

    Expand that analysis a bit to include authoritarianism, which can walk hand in hand with various economic and social systems when given the chance.

  24. Mark Gisleson

    Someone (not this publication!) needs to do a deep dive into the Working Families Party. What Grim writes is consistent with what I saw them doing in Wisconsin. Some folks deep within the Democratic party are very, very awake, and understand that current party dynamics are electoral poison. No matter how you cut it, Joe Biden is only President because the major media eagerly gamed themselves to bury a huge news story, Hunter’s laptop.

    So now the Working Families Party is working both sides of the aisle? Not surprised at all. Whoever these people are, unlike the swells running the DNC/DCCC/DSCC, the Working Family Party knows how to tip an election (using Randy “Ironstache” Bryce to elect a D Governor in WI was, frankly, brilliant, even if they did achieve their goal by making Bryce run a campaign that made it impossible for him to win his own race).

    Since the WFP is heavily associated with New York (and best known in NY) it would be interesting to find out what their impact was on the D implosion in New York. Yandex found me this tidbit, but the link has been killed:

    Following Election Victory, Hochul Pays… – The Jewish Voice›2022/11…working-families-party…
    16 November
    On the other hand, another Albany insider said she’s being misled if she follows the Working Families Party’s lead, being the truth is she almost became the first Democrat to lose a statewide election in 20 years because New Yorkers feel she’s been too close with…

    Would love to know what the rest of that story had to say but even can’t un-404 a story someone decided should be disappeared.

  25. Jeremy Grimm

    “Neverwhere Brexit Britain …”

    Curious that Gerhard Schnyder does not relate his reference to Neverwhere to Neil Gaiman’s creation.

    1. Karl

      By every report I read, Brexit’s impacts on the UK economy keep growing–to the downside. I thought this quote pretty much said it all:

      In short then, despite Brexiters having been in complete control of government since late 2019 at the latest, they have not managed to create anything that would allow them to say: ‘See, we told you it will be great.’ Instead, the situation they created is an absolute, complete, utter, and unmitigated shambles on every imaginable front. This was illustrated this week by Andrew Griffith – a Treasury minister – who failed to name a single Brexit benefit when put on the spot in the Commons.

      1. The Rev Kev

        Well now the Brexteers can say that it would have turned out great except for – Russia. Russia ruined Brexit for them. At least, that will be the line of propaganda that they will push.

  26. russell1200

    I saw a parked Hyundai burst in flames in the parking lot the other day. It smoldered slow, and people in a shopping center are not spending a ton of time away from the vehicle. So only the vehicle that caught fire burned up until the firefighters showed up.

    From Ford Recall Website:
    Why is there a recall?

    We’ve discovered a vehicle safety issue in some 2021 model-year Ford Expedition vehicles built from July 28, 2020 to August 31, 2021. Some of these vehicles have experienced an under-hood fire, even while parked and off. Ford apparently has said to park the vehicles away from structures until the issue is fixed.

    What causes the issue?
    We believe these vehicle fires can be traced to a circuit board supplier that changed manufacturing locations during the height of the COVID-19 pandemic. The printed circuit boards produced there are sometimes susceptible to a high-current short. They were supplied to us and installed in our Ford Expedition® and Lincoln Navigator® SUVs produced during the recall window. We haven’t seen this issue on printed circuit boards produced at other locations by this or any other suppliers we use. While this seems to be a supplier’s error, the problem is ours to fix.

  27. Mikel

    “If the Fed is doing its job right, it will push up the unemployment rate before inflation declines, and both will remain elevated until they reach their targets…”

    I’m not making any arguments for it.
    However, this shouldn’t be a surprising line of thought if close attention was paid to what central bankers were saying as far back as Jackson Hole.

    The economic theory can be debated, but I consider this article somewhat of a public service announcement.

  28. AndrewJ

    On the Senate passing a bill that requires states to honor other state’s marriages between same-sex couples – sure is funny how the culture war fodder of twenty years ago is now water under the bridge. This stuff would have made right-winger’s heads explode in the nineties, and no way would nineteen Republicans have voted for it. Now it’s like it doesn’t even matter.
    I have a suspicion* that the trans agenda is being funded by some garden-variety gay members of our oligopoly. Get the rubes all fired up by a new front in the culture war, and they’ll forget the last one, and Joe Uihlein and Jack Walton can get married in peace. Never mind the casualties.
    *based on no evidence, aside from how it’s basically come from nowhere to dominate the brain-space of liberals and (seemingly) most of my leftist fellow travellers.

    1. MT_Wild

      Many states have reciprocity agreements for concealed carry permits, why not marriages?

      Now if it’s forced reciprocity, maybe that’s an opening for the gun rights crowd. Ok CA, we accept your same-sex marriage here in ID, but you have to accept our CCW license.

      I’d say it’s tit for tat, but I guess it’s tit for gat.

      1. JBird4049

        >>>Now if it’s forced reciprocity, maybe that’s an opening for the gun rights crowd. Ok CA, we accept your same-sex marriage here in ID, but you have to accept our CCW license.

        You do realize that would make scream “why do you hate the children?” being as gunz are teh bad thing.

        All of this is mostly politicized culture war bullpucky made to distract, divide, and confuse. Has anyone noticed that the worse things are economically, such as the growing number of homeless, including entire families with children, the more its trans this, guns that, Ukraine here, and Trump there?

  29. Cetra Ess

    re: Here’s how the US shouldn’t respond to China protests – Responsible Statecraft

    Since when does the US factor consequences, especially unintended consequences? Everything about its approach to…well, any conflict in the last 70 years, stands as evidence of a very studied disregard to consideration of unintended consquences. The US is so very predictable in this regard.

    Indeed, if Putin can base his calculations and planning around playing to the unintended consequences, so can China.

    If I can go against Hanlon’s razor, I think such is the US government’s complete control over the information and media apparatus that Washington effectively feels it has complete power, can spin its way out of anything, so doesn’t need to concern itself about such things. The author, on the other hand, seems to operate from a different paradigm.

  30. Will

    For those concerned with rising rents and the cost of living crises, AirBnB has stepped up to help – renters can now host short term rentals.

    Also, very kind of the landlords to pre-approve subletting through AirBnB.

    The short-term rental firm has partnered with more than 175 buildings in 25+ cities across the United States, the company said in a blogpost.

    The latest service will feature buildings managed by Equity Residential, Greystar Real Estate Partners LLC and 10 other companies, the Wall Street Journal reported on Wednesday, citing the company.

    Of course, not entirely driven by altruism.

    Landlords who partner with the new listing service will get a share of the total booking revenue from Airbnb sublets – 20% in most cases, the WSJ report added.

    1. Maxwell Johnston

      Thanks for posting. Mearsheimer is a breath of fresh air and sanity. At 19.40, he states bluntly: “There are no realistic options. We’re screwed.” Which sums up the whole UKR mess pithily.

  31. Tim

    “Chinese ‘gait recognition’ tech IDs people by how they walk”

    So if you want to disappear just put on a shoe with a different heel height and bingo, you’re off the grid.

      1. MaryLand

        I tried 3 times to watch that video and each time my iPhone was shut out of my browser. That has never happened before with anything online. I went through the ads and saw the first few seconds of Christopher Walker and heard the music, then bam, totally out of my browser. I use the Brave browser. Weird.

      2. MT_Wild

        Omg. I had no idea. Who knew three of my favorite things from my youth (Dune, Christopher Walken, and Fatboy Slim) intercepted.

  32. JBird4049

    >>>As Haiti Unravels, U.S. Officials Push to Send in an Armed Foreign Force

    Haiti is unraveling because of American led coups, assassinations, and invasions of the past century has caused it.

  33. Gulag

    Worthwhile interview with Wolfgang Streeck.

    One comment of his, among many, that seems important and worthy of further debate and discussion:

    “I think we must take leave of the modernist illusion that a new reality can be created by intelligent design and implemented by revolutionary state power–the Marxist-Lenninist way of changing the world.”

    1. JBird4049

      None of what the Stalinists, the Maoists did, or even the Nazis were new, nor what the current group of elites want do is new, not truly. The only difference, and really not even that, is the desire to use artificial “intelligence,” which currently are algorithms or biases in code as the basis.

      Just look at what was done by the Spanish, Americans, British, Dutch, Belgians, Germans all did over the centuries; they used religion, civilization, and “improvement,” as the reasons with military, the law, enforced education, and economic policy explicitly used as the tools, and very often physical or cultural genocide as the result; entire tribes, countries, kingdoms, empires, even civilizations were destroyed, not to mention internal groups like the Irish and Scots.

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