Links 1/24/2023

Hikikomori, the Japanese phenomenon of extreme social isolation is going global ZMEScience

The other Cleopatra Aeon


What 5,000-year-old skeletons tell us about living with climate change Grist


Expert: $225 million needed to replace more than 35,000 lead water pipes in RI WPRI

Early results of lead testing show alarming levels in some Delaware school drinking water Delaware News Journal

Des Moines Water Works recommends replacing thousands of lead pipes KCCI

Flint residents urged to filter water as bottled water donations end amid ongoing water crisis ABC News



US, Israel kick off largest ever military exercise as Iran nuclear talks falter Al-Monitor

Old Blighty

BBC Chairman Helped Boris Johnson Secure $990,000 Loan Weeks Before Winning Job – Reports Deadline

Thames Water’s real-time map confirms raw sewage discharges Guardian


The BBC Is Abusing Freedom Of The Press To Wage Hybrid Warfare On India Andrew Korybko


Good News, World! You Can Stop Worrying About the South China Sea! China Matters

Exaggerating China’s military spending, St. Louis Fed breaks all statistical rules with misleading graph Geopolitical Economy

China tightens grip as dominant LNG buyer with long-term deals Nikkei Asia

European Disunion

Five charged over second alleged far-right plot against German government Guardian

Can Serbia survive EU’s economic ultimatum? Branko Milanović, Serbian Monitor

If the European Union Doesn’t Democratize, It Will Crumble Jacobin

New Not-So-Cold War


Russia and West on verge of ‘real war’ – Lavrov RT

EU approves extra 500 million euros in military aid for Ukraine France24

Why is Egypt’s Navy commanding a NATO-led coalition in the Red Sea? The Cradle

Estonian foreign ministry wants to extend controlled maritime area Estonian Public Broadcasting.

NATO’s Baltic States, Russia remove ambassadors as diplomatic relations downgraded Reuters


U.S. Officials Claim More ‘Russiagate’ Like Nonsense Moon of Alabama. A thorough takedown of the New York Times’ Spanish letter bomb piece featured in yesterday’s Links.

Right and Left To Join in D.C. Protest: ‘Not One More Penny for War in Ukraine’ Antiwar

Rexit Refusniki GmbH: Less than 9% of foreign companies pull out of Russia IntelliNews

Turkey’s Erdogan shows no give on Sweden’s NATO bid Al-Monitor

South of the Border

Brazil and Argentina preparing new Latin American currency to ‘reduce reliance on US dollar’ Geopolitical Economy

Biden Administration

Is Kevin McCarthy’s Secret Weapon Joe Biden? The American Prospect

DOJ prosecutions on the rise, but fines plummet Global Competition Review


Even Democrats Are Now Critical of Biden Over Documents Mess Bloomberg

Kamala Harris mourns victims of Monterey Park shooting before speech to mark 50 years since Roe CNN

Trump Looks to Ditch His Own Social Media Site Rolling Stone

GOP Clown Car

Trump’s MAGA forces threaten to upend vote for RNC chair AP

Democrats en déshabillé

Why Is Pete Buttigieg Refusing to Crack Down on Airlines’ Scams? Jacobin


7 Dead, 1 Injured in Half Moon Bay Mass Shooting; Suspect in Custody NBC Bay Area

Big Brother is Watching You Watch

Scientists turn WiFi routers into ‘cameras’ that can see people through walls ZMEScience


Imperial Collapse Watch

U.S. Weapons Industry Unprepared for a China Conflict, Report Says WSJ

Police State Watch

Tyre Nichols’ family attorney says video shows police beating Nichols like a ‘human pinata’ CNN

Officer Involved in Tyre Nichols’ Death Previously Accused of Brutality The Daily Memphian

Our No Longer Free Press

Sports Desk

Jeff Bezos may sell Washington Post to buy Commanders, investors say: sources NY Post


DOJ poised to sue Google over digital ad market dominance Bloomberg

The Bezzle

The Russian-Linked Payment Processors Feeding the Crypto-conomy Dirty Bubble Media

US banks pressured to sever ties with crypto companies Protos

New York’s financial regulator takes aim at firms co-mingling crypto funds Reuters

Class Warfare


Empathy Economics and Social Classes Origins of Our Time. The deck: A primary source on Janet Yellen and the conflict theory of inflation

What do indebted employees do? Financialisation and the decline of industrial action Industrial Relations Journal. From the abstract: “Since indebted employees tend to become self-disciplined at the workplace on the fear of losing their job and defaulting, this paper argues that the post-1970 rise of household financialisation is associated with the decline of strike activity.”

Spotify cuts 6% of its workforce — read the memo CEO Daniel Ek sent to staff CNBC

There’s Bipartisan Agreement on One Thing: Ticketmaster Sucks The New Republic

“Someone hit the big score
They figured it out
That we’re gonna do it anyway
Even if it doesn’t pay”

-Gillian Welch

Antidote du jour (courtesy of rlgroves):

See yesterday’s Links and Antidote du Jour here.

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  1. zagonostra

    >Jeff Bezos may sell Washington Post to buy Commanders, investors say: sources NY Post

    “Bezos has become belatedly aware of the obligations of owning the Washington Post — if he didn’t realize it would muzzle him, he realizes it now,” Wasserman said. “It would make sense for him to get out of it.”

    How does owning the Washington Post contribute to “muzzling him.” No I think Bezo has more than enough money to buy some sport team without selling the WP. Something doesn’t smell right with this story. I think it is more likely that every time WP publishes a story it is tainted by its owner having final control over it. The WP and the NYT, the papers of “record,” are now, to a sizeable segment of the population considered mouth pieces for the “intelligence establishment.”

    Tucker Carlson’s recent viral video that identifies Woodward of Watergate as having ties to the same “intelligence establishment,” has people who normally get their news from MSM getting a serious dose of cognitive dissonance. Bezo’s selling WP has nothing to do with him wanting to buy a sports team, IMO.

    1. Wukchumni

      Its hard to imagine why newspapers really have any resale value versus an NFL team…

      A doctor in LA bought the LA Times* & SD Union-Tribune for $500 million 6 or 7 years ago, and i’m constantly bombarded with $1 for 6 months worth on the LAT, and the San Diego market must be more upscale as they want $4 for 4 months worth of online fishwrap.

      Imagine if the LA Rams tried to entice you with 6 home games for a buck and decent seats too!

      I had the pleasure of reading the dead tree version of the SD U-T last week, all 25 pages of it. They practically want to give away the online version, but not the print version, which carried the odd cover price of $2.77 for a daily version. If blue hairs such as my mom want to read sometime tactile, well-make em’ pay!

      Needless to say in that 25 pages, there were only local stories that were how shall we say: news breakers. Everything else was stale in varying degrees, and it isn’t uncommon to see the same stories for many days in a row, there is no there, there.

      * Shame on you, Los Angeles Times! There is an article today about twins who have summitted Mt Baldy 54 times with a photo of them in deep snow.

      Why oh why are you tempting people to go hike a mountain in conditions that have killed 3 or 4 competent hikers the past few months-including an actor, because they have no experience with an abundance of snow & ice chutes and how if you slip there’s a little 500 foot runout where they’ll find the bodies later.

      1. juno mas

        Yes. Before going into the backcountry newbies need to read “The Complete Walker” (1968), at a minimum. Stuff happens in winter that doesn’t happen in the summer on the trail. And there’s no 2 minute rapid response team in the back of the beyond.

    2. IMOR

      Bezos as an NFL owner is just perfect. Water seeking its own level, game recognizes game, predatory birds of a feather, biggest single certification of aging out of original sector of success- just completely on the nose. I insist it happen.

      1. Boomheist

        I see a future, not that far off, and maybe we are already there, whereby a billionaire is not a “real” billionaire unless he or she (mostly he btw) owns an NFL franchise, this being the top of the pecking order, followed by basketball and baseball. Of course now we have, what, 650 billionaires in this country? So there will be competition up there for the limited slots. Maybe Roger Goodell’s plans to expand the teams by another, what, six? is because the pool of rich people to buy teams is so large……

        Thanks be to the Reagan then the Trump tax cuts for all this, by the way……

        1. Wukchumni

          The owner of the Angels couldn’t find a buyer for his MLB team and will continue on this year.

          That tells me that beisbol teams hit the high water mark and not only that, what sort of self-respecting Illionaire would want to own an operation where your fan base was pushing 60 years old, and has none of the glamour of the gridiron?

        2. tegnost

          Thanks be to the Reagan then the Trump tax cuts for all this, by the way……

          What, no thanks for the dems who wouldn’t overturn the tax breaks all those times they had a chance to? And what about W? He delivered too…
          The repubs are the party of the right, and the dems are the party of the rich.
          There is no left representation in the USA. Zero.

          1. Oh

            Thanks Obama for extending the Bush tax cuts. /s

            Condy is already a prt owner of the Denver Donkeys along with the Walmart Filth. Pretty soon Obama will join in with his ill gotten loot.

        3. spud

          actually the boom in billionaires exploded from 1993 on wards. those are the years bill clinton gutted GATT with nafta, the W.T.O., and free trade with china, then gutted the new deal by freeing up the wall street parasites onto the world.

          Here’s how bad it has become: In the early 1980s, Forbes magazine started its infamous list of the 400 wealthiest individuals in the United States. In 1983, there were only 15 billionaires on the list, and the total combined net worth of the richest 400 people was $118 billion. In March 2021, there were more than 650 US billionaires, holding combined assets exceeding $4.2 trillion. In contrast, the bottom half of all US households — 165 million people — have a combined wealth of $2.4 trillion. This is because the bottom fifth of US households have zero or negative net worth, and the next fifth have so few assets they live in fear of destitution.

          all one needs to do is look at Pickettys amazing graph at the year 1993, that is when inequality really exploded.

          tax cuts for wealthy parasites is stupid and destructive. but the true creator of davos man was bill clinton.

      2. lyman alpha blob

        If he does wind up with the DC football team, it would be kind of ironic that current Commanders owner Synder is considered a racist and societal pariah who isn’t fit to run an NFL franchise, but the billionaire who got his money by treating his tens of thousands of warehouse workers like slaves is not.

        1. lyman alpha blob

          Well the above is word salad – meant to say that Synder is considered unfit, while Bezos is not.

      3. Adam Eran

        JFYI, major league sports has an anti-trust exemption. Owners of the teams can threaten to move to extort additional subsidies from their locations and cities have no recourse. Al Davis did this many times with the Oakland, Anaheim and now Vegas Raiders. Antitrust is important because no city can say “Never mind! I’ll set up my own team.” The UK has no such exemption, and the City of London apparently has 13 soccer (“football”) teams, none of them extorting stadiums from their public.

        This is the current fashion in plutocracy. 75% of Bush 43’s net worth came from a stadium deal he got with the Texas Rangers — a money-losing team until the subsidy came along.

        In Sacramento, the Basketball Kings threatened to relocate, and the City ponied up more than a quarter billion dollars for a stadium. The City owns the stadium, but not the team, so they can still threaten to move and extort even more money. The team itself is worth double what the plutocrats paid for it, according to Forbes. Oh yes, and since the City owns the stadium, no property tax revenue from that venue for them!

        To compound the awfulness, Sacramento Mayor Darrell Steinberg campaigned on how great was his willingness to move heaven and earth–and set aside environmental reviews–for the appropriately-named Kings, who get a quarter billion dollars at the drop of a hat, but the homeless get a pittance. What a problem those homeless are!

        Local politics! I try to be cynical when I encounter it, but seem never to be able to be cynical enough.

        1. Expat2Uruguay

          Ah Sacramento! The city that drove me out of the US. I was very involved in local activism there, and it was heartbreaking. I spent many a night addressing City Council, and they hated me. They hated us all of course

    3. Mark Gisleson

      Russ Baker’s “Family of Secrets” said that while in the Navy, Woodward had worked for Rear Admiral Welander who went on to do White House security for Nixon. Surprised to hear Tucker Carlson is on this now.

      I think this will be a year of “amazing” revelations. At some point a news outlet will start connecting the dots and will move to the head of the line, viewer/reader-wise, and then the dam will finally break.

    4. Oh

      That lowlife Bezos has wrung out all the tax benefits from WP. He wants to buy an NFL team so that he can get to shelter his ill gotten gains and still make money. Pox on him, the Commanders and the NFL. Fools in this country believe the constant barrage of propaganda from the Sports Talk outlet that they constantly argue about how much a player needs to be paid. Why do they care? They’re also swayed by the parading of war “heroes”, singing of the national anthem (why?) and the overflying of destructive airplanes prior to a game. None of this equates to patriotism.

  2. griffen

    American life in 2023, we can’t have nice things like water delivered into homes that has filtered out minerals that harm you or small children. I tried posting this yesterday, about the ongoing crisis in Jackson, MS, but given an opportunity I am posting again. This landmark bill below passed in 2021. For the record, I’m not an engineer by training or trade at all, but understand these water and sewer systems are complex and long term plans have to be precisely determined. So of course, there is that.

    1. Harold

      $150,000,000,000 thrown into Ukraine, the black hole of U.S. tax dollars-so far.
      Why didn’t the citizens of Jackson and Flint etc. leverage the sanctions that the globalists imposed on Americans, and use their credit cards to buy stocks in Raytheon, Con-Agra, the LNG exporters and, while they are at it, Pfizer?

      Short sighted people, they could have paid for their own pipe repairs with the lucrative war profits.

      1. digi_owl

        Spending on local infra is somehow inflationary, but sending multiple times that to burn in some foreign battlefield is just fine.

        I swear, so much of what is wrong in the western world can be traced back to the spreadsheets of the beancounters on Wall Street and in the City.

  3. The Rev Kev

    “Estonian foreign ministry wants to extend controlled maritime area”

    And here is Estonia helping to establish the next international flashpoint. Relations are so bad with Russia now that each country has just demanded that the others’ Ambassador leave their country. And here Estonia wants to push their maritime borders out to 24 nautical miles. And if Finland does the same, then the entire Gulf of Finland falls under their collective control as at its most narrowest, that gulf is only 52 kilometers wide. So not only would ships of the Russian Navy now pass through “their” territory but so would Russian commercial ships. But what does international law say?

    ‘Territorial sea, as defined by the 1982 United Nations Convention on the Law of the Sea, is a belt of coastal waters extending at most 12 nautical miles (22 km; 14 mi) from the baseline (usually the mean low-water mark) of a coastal state.’

    This must be more of that Rules Based Order that I keep on hearing about. maybe the Russians will have to conduct Freedom of Navigation exercises. And just by coincidence, I see a linked article at the bottom of this article saying that the USS Roosevelt has just arrived in Tanninn harbour.

    1. Polar Socialist

      It used to be 4 nautical miles until 1994, when both Finland and Estonia expanded to 12 miles. Since then the Finnish law dictates that there must be 3 nautical miles of international waters between Estonian and Finnish waters, so Finland should have some objections.

      1. digi_owl

        Nah. With how in the MIC pocket their current government is, Finland will happily ignore, or strike out, that clause in their law to spite the Russians.

      2. Revenant

        And the article duly says the contiguous zone would stop at the nearer of 24nm or the edge of the 6nm wide international water.

        Still, silly timing by Estonia….

    2. JohnA

      Well it will be like the Daily Mail that gets all hysterical when Russian naval vessels pass the Straits of Dover between Dover and Calais, clearly visible from onshore, which by maritime law they are entitled to do. And, of course, the Russians can cite whatever it is the US says, ‘freedom of navigation or such like’, when the US navy sails close to various Chinese islands and between China and Taiwan.

      1. digi_owl

        Or how pissed they got at Turkey when it followed international agreements and closed the Bosporus for military ships.

        On a different note, USA keep claiming that as they never ratified the law of the seas they can sail their carrier groups wherever they like.

  4. Louis Fyne

    M1 tank gets <1 mile per gallon and has a 500 gallon tank. While it can run on diesel, if I recall correctly, it's normal fuel is aviation-grade gas for its turbine engines.

    The Leopard tank is more economical, but still needs a big infrastructure to sustain it.

    And with the ubiquity of anti-tank weapons (drones and infantry-carried), these tanks are sitting ducks if they operate by themselves.

    1. Martin Oline

      These tanks need to have their engines running in order to operate. If they run out of fuel they are land anchors, unable to do anything. I wonder how long it takes an M1 to use 500 gallons just idling?

      1. Martin Oline

        Col. MacGregor says “The tank will run for 7-8 hours with the engine running before it requires refueling.”

    2. Wukchumni

      The last cavalry charge was about a century ago, and we might’ve seen the end of tanks as they are ungodly expensive to make and operate and very cheap to destroy using modern methods.

      They’ve turned in dreadnoughts, in that you don’t want to risk them against torpedo boats or mines, so they stay in port aside from Jutland.

      1. Polar Socialist

        The last cavalry charge was about a century ago

        Pretty much 78 years ago, on March 1 1945, when the 1st “Warsaw” Independent Cavalry Brigade successfully charged German anti-tank positions in the battle of Schoenfeld.

      2. Joe Renter

        I believe there were a couple cavalry charges in WW2, from reading the book,” The long walk”, from Slavomir Rawicz, a Polish officer in the calvary.

        1. Michael Fiorillo

          I once read that the Polish jokes that were once common had their origin in Americans incredulity at Polish cavalry officers on horseback charging Nazi panzer divisions in September of 1939.

      3. scott s.

        “Cavalry” is a mission. Horses and tanks are weapon systems designed to fill the mission which requires mobility. Other weapon systems can do it as well (eg helos). I can see as a specific implementation of cavalry doctrine the US ACR is no longer as prominent as it was back in the cold war.

    3. herman_sampson

      I had worked for a turbine engine manufacturer and the claim was one could run it on any combustible liquid or semi-liquid, thus “it could run on perfume”. They even engineered engines to run on a coal slurry.
      Turbines are probably optimized for jet fuel and the fuel storage and delivery systems are probably designed for specific fuels.
      Maintenance and repair are a whole world different from piston engines.

    4. hk

      Jet fuel, not gasoline. This was intentional, supposedly, so that as much as possible of US military runs (optimally) on the same fuel. I don’t think there’s any military vehicle left that runs on gasoline (exclusively) any more. Most of the “diesel” powered tanks also can run (although less than ideally) on multiple types of fuel, I believe.

      1. digi_owl

        Yeah, the diesel engine can run on anything that will ignite given pressure and enough air. The man himself claimed it could run on coal dust even (many kinds of dust burns easily when mixed with enough air). The trick is getting the fuel into the chambers.

    5. ACPAL

      The BBC produced the video “The Bulls’s Eye War” in 1976 about the 1973 Arab-Israeli war which describes how easy it was to destroy tanks. Since then tank design has improved but so have anti-tank weapons. And while the desert is mostly open terrain on sand and rocky soil Ukraine has many hiding places but also severe weather as well as mud traps the improvements in infrared, radar, and satellite imaging make it nearly impossible to hide a tank from long-range missiles and drones. Still it’s an interesting video to watch and offers an insight into modern anti-tank warfare.

      1. digi_owl

        And all that makes it interesting to speculate how Russia could have a long column of vehicles sit right outside Kiev for weeks without getting mauled.

        1. eg

          I interpreted that to mean that the Ukrainian Air Force was so thoroughly interdicted as to be a non-factor.

    6. eg

      When these tanks do finally arrive in Poland, how is Ukraine going to get them to the Eastern Front in one piece?

  5. griffen

    Ticketmaster merged with Live Nation, and it’s like concert goers play Monopoly and are always going to land on both Boardwalk and Park Place and pay for the right to breathe air and squint at their entertainers, visiting any venue of the company’s own choosing. Nice business model there.

    Funny, I’m surprised to see even a George Santos quote in the article. I am surprised that he is not close, super tight with Taylor and that they are BFFs ( according to him naturally ). \sarc

    1. Henry Moon Pie

      The Santos style is, “We were married once. By a rabbi. At the 9/11 Memorial so my mother could be there.”

      What I wonder is whether he actually inhabits the world he describes.

  6. Colonel Smithers

    Thank you, Conor.

    Further to the scandals in dear old Blighty, one wonders how the likes Nadeem Zahawi and, as per your link above, Richard Sharp got so far and for so long.

    Sharp was on the Bank of England committee tasked with oversight of the financial system and its stability from 2013 – 9. He helped water down proposals that would have further curbed leverage, restrict proprietary trading, limit the poisonous bonus driven culture and shed light on shadow banking. As head of proprietary investments at Goldman Sachs in the 1990s and 2000s and his own investment firm, he allowed his financial interests, not the public interest, to dictate at the Bank. Why would he allow the public interest to hold sway at the BBC? The media, academia etc., even when prodded by insiders, never focused on that bit of his career when running to chair the BBC.

    Thirty years ago, Zahawi, his soon to be brother in law, Broosk Saib, and later guest of HM, Jeffrey Archer, helped themselves to funds intended for Iraqi Kurds. Archer called the pair Bean Kurd and Lemon Kurd. Some years later, the trio were given (share) price sensitive information by Archer’s wife, a board director at Anglia TV, and traded illegally on that. Mrs Archer resigned, but no action was taken against the trio. In addition to using public money to pay for a heating system for his stables at his Shakespeare country estate / constituency, Zahawi, by way of his wife and her business partners, have been buying land in Oxfordshire ahead of the authorities buying them out. Overseas, he has energy interests in the Golan Heights, Kurdistan and Kazakhstan, the former controversial due to the Israeli occupation and the latter two due to equally unsavoury partners and practices. The honours committee pushed back strongly against a knighthood for him, not just because the tax and anti-fraud authorities were investigating Zahawi. Again, no media interest, even when provided with insider leads.

    1. JohnA

      Hi Colonel, do you have any idea in what capacity and on whose dime, B Johnson headed to Kiev this week, with media crews in tow?

      1. Colonel Smithers

        Thank you, John.

        I don’t, unfortunately.

        I imagine Johnson wanted to divert attention from the loan, so it’s a question of what Ukraine can do for him.

        Johnson and his allies are briefing against Zahawi et al in order to undermine Sunak and with an eye on a leadership challenge after the May local elections.

        Sunak hit back with details of the loan to the Murdoch press as Murdoch is happy to attack the BBC and the Spectator’s Johnson.

  7. The Rev Kev

    ‘Michael McFaul
    If Abrams tanks work in Poland, why cant they work in Ukraine? I understand the jet fuel and high maintenance constraints. And Leopards are better. But there’s no military utility in deploying them in Ukraine? Really?’

    Who is going to drive them? I mean, it is not like you can have a bunch of guys just jump in one and drive off. I was listening to a tank officer’s testimony saying that it just takes months to get a crew use to being in an Abrams tank. And this is important as a crew can easily get injured or even killed in one otherwise just learning to use it. And unless properly trained, they can easily damage one of the systems making the tank inoperable. It is all very well for a Russophobe like Michael McFaul to be spewing this nonsense but I think that he is the sort that thinks that understanding military logistics would be beneath him.

    1. cnchal

      Even though it’s a tank, ‘fragile’ seems to be the operative word. Any sand gets in the gears and it may as well be stuck in mud, and no ham fists at the controls either. Complexity has its price.

      1. Boomheist

        Tanks were a game changer of a sort just over a century ago. Aircraft carriers were a game changer starting about 90 years ago, making battleships basically obsolete because the planes could swarm the battleships from just over the horizon. Now the U.S. has, what, eleven carrier “battle groups” roaming the oceans? Multi-ship groups manned by thousands of sailors, showing the flag. My suspicion here is that the hypersonic missile and the drone have made both tanks and aircraft carriers – indeed most warships – obsolete today. I think most people know this, but so long as there is not a real and actual demonstration of their vulnerability we can all feel secure in our safety. Sort of like the Maginot Line before WW1.

        1. Wukchumni

          Could you imagine the scenario circa 1944?

          Patton: I need 14 Shermans, stat! (that’s how many British Challenger 2 tanks merry olde has promised Ukraine)

          GM: Its not as easy as that General, we have to make them from scratch and as you know, we don’t want to upset Luxembourgers by deploying them there, can’t you just use gussied up jeeps with mounted 50 caliber machine guns?

          1. Irrational

            I don’t think the Luxembourgers would have minded at all, they were annexed into the Reich after all and they will remind you that they had the highest deaths in concentration camps per capita despite this (never verified this claim).

          2. Colonel Smithers

            Thank you, W.

            The British army top brass opposed the transfer of these 14 tanks as they constitute about half of what the army can readily deploy.

            The army has no tanks made this century. Challenger 3 tanks, to be built by the manufacturers of Leopard tanks, won’t be ready until the end of the decade.

            A joke doing the rounds in Whitehall is that, on current trends, the British army’s peer competitor by the end of the decade will be the Irish army.

        2. digi_owl

          Tanks were great for breaking of the trench war stalemate, by acting as mobile cover. And improvements in engines allowed the Germany to catch France and UK off guard, as their officers were still thinking in WW1 terms.

          As an aside, i belive Eisenhower almost got in trouble for advocating something similar to blitzkrieg between the wars.

          And you do not need hypersonics for dealing with carrier groups. A certain lt. general demonstrated during a war game that enough small ships and planes firing conventional anti ship missiles will overwhelm a group’s defenses.

      2. Polar Socialist

        It’s a machine. The more it weights, the more power it has to deliver to make it move, and the more strain there is on the engine, the clutch, the gears, the suspension, the tracks, the brakes and the cooling system.

        No matter the engineering, tanks do break down if you use them. Each day in a war (or even exercise) a tank company has a different number of tanks operational. And that’s not counting nearby explosions that misalign something important, knock out sensors or cut antennas. Tank that can’t aim, see or communicate won’t go to a mission.

        Many a “destroyed” tank has often been an abandoned tank (broken down, out of fuel/lubricant) that has been shot up just to be sure (or for practice. Or for fun) trough ages.

        1. hk

          Yup. During both WW2 and Middle Eastern wars that involved 100s of tanks, whoever that “won” the battle was the side that had access to the battlefield and a nearby mobile workshop.

          1. Wukchumni

            The Germans were Johann on the spot in retrieving & repairing tanks and other vehicles in North Africa, versus the UK having to leave them where they lay, but somehow the Nazis nabbed the silver medal there.

      1. Joe Renter

        If one wants to get a soldier’s insight on the ground with that battle of Kursk and the battle in eastern front, I recommend reading the book, “Forgotten solider” by Guy Sajar. I think it does a service in showing how terrible war is.

      2. digi_owl

        With Kursk being just on the Russian side of the Russia-Ukraine border today.

        The Russian invasion was clearly unprovoked… /s

  8. Wukchumni

    Been a calamitous week in Cali with 3 mass murder sprees d’corpse.

    These come with a twist in that the perps weren’t the usual suspects, a couple of older Asian gents and presumably a Mexican cartel doing the hit on 6-including a baby, closer to home here in Goshen.

    The Hsi Lai Temple (no fronton there) was built about a mile from where I grew up and over the years just about every house sold to somebody from the PRC. They were the best neighbors, and the last people you’d think would do a shoot em’ up, but may you live in interesting times.

    1. Bart Hansen

      Scalia’s awful legacy, based on his ability to consider only the last phrase in the Second Amendment.

      1. Mildred Montana

        Scalia the Originalist, blessed with the uncanny ability to divine the thoughts and intentions of men two centuries dead.

        1. Jason Boxman

          And the clownishness to think that history is static and however optimal the document might have been centuries ago, that it still applies equally the same today, and would be written the same today besides.

    2. SocalJimObjects

      The Oakland shooting marks the third mass shooting in as many days. I hope we will not see a fourth one today (?)

    3. Carla

      Wuk: “somebody from the PRC. They were the best neighbors, and the last people you’d think would do a shoot em’ up”

      Sadly, guess they’re just Americans now.

      And per Bart H — yeah, thanks a lot, Scalia. If there’s a hell, I sure hope you’re burning in it, Antonin, because you bequeathed it to us here on earth.

      1. Wukchumni

        We’d be foolish not to think that all the armed hell we’ve released on oh so many other countries wouldn’t come back to bite us, and I fully expect a grislier version of Rwanda upon us.

        All for what, really?

        1. ACPAL

          Unfortunately many people believe that the best way to stop gun crime (not crime, just gun crime) is to take away guns from the 130,000,000 law abiding American gun owners who just like to hunt, target practice, or just go out and shoot tin cans. The American way, punish the innocent knowing it will not affect the guilty because you know they’re not going to obey the law and turn in their guns. Nor will it stop people from mixing up batches of toxic chemicals, driving cars into crowds of people (including children), hacking away with machetes, knocking trains off tracks, setting fires to crowded night clubs, etc, etc, etc. But that’s OK, at least they’re not using guns.

          1. Wukchumni

            I pay a couple grand a year in insurance and registration for the right to drive a vehicle, and it protects me from lawsuits should I have a momentary lapse of reason and mow down a farmers market as result from my actions, but lets be honest-that really never happens, me or anybody else doing it.

            We like to monetize everything, why not have gun insurance that costs a pretty penny, oh how I can the howls now, muh freeeeedoms!

    4. Sideshow Bob

      Meanwhile the party that pushes gun elimination at home happily sends billions of dollars to run a meat grinder in Ukraine.

  9. russell1200

    The Moon Over Alabama “takedown” isn’t particularly impressive.

    A bunch of bombs were sent to sources associated with the Ukraine/Ukraine armaments. The why is obvious. The question of why not elsewhere is tenuous at best: maybe this is just the start, maybe its the only place the Russians could get this setup, maybe they feel Spain is more susceptible to pressure, maybe the Russian sympathizers in Spain are crazier than elsewhere, or maybe it is just a matter of limited resources/budget.

    At some point I am sure the false-flag defense will get enacted if the story gets legs.

    Is the NYT jumping the gun? Possibly? It would be nice to see if we could know a little bit about such things as how the explosives were manufactured, etc. But its not like the pipeline, where you were blaming the Russians for blowing up their own pipeline.

      1. Mark Gisleson


        Not sure what exactly that tweet means, but I’m picking up some serious Watergate vibes/

        1. OnceWereVirologist

          The guy retired. It would be practically unpatriotic for any high-ranking retired American civil servant not to sell his connections to a foreign billionaire. Unless it’s a Russian billionaire under sanctions. That sees you looking at a 20 stretch.

      2. fresno dan

        obviously, this classic from Warren Zevon
        needs to be updated and Lawyers, Guns and Money needs “tweets” added to the lyrics. Now a days, most war and politics is won in the tweetosphere.
        If Waterloo was won on the playing fields of Eton, Ukraine will be won on the message boards of Twitter /sarc
        AND I had forgotten about the very first lyric:
        I went home with a waitress, the way I always do. How was I to know, she was with the Russians too.

    1. Darthbobber

      Maybe this, maybe that? Seriously? By any rational standard, the fact that the NYT story offers literally no evidence for any of the anonymous bare assertions it retails is enough of an argument against giving it credence.

    2. OnceWereVirologist

      No one in Russian intelligence is going to mistakenly believe that a half-assed letter bomb campaign in Spain is going to terrify all of Europe into submission – so their motive is what ? Perhaps you recall an anthrax-contaminated letter scare in the run-up to the Iraq War ? History doesn’t often repeat, but it does rhyme. That was eventually (after the war was pushed through) blamed on a lone wolf American anthrax researcher. No government false flag to see there, no sir. So no need for a false-flag defense here either if it makes you uncomfortable. The CIA stopped doing evil GLADIO-style shit years ago, they’re woke now. Let’s just posit, a lone wolf Ukrainian nationalist doing his bit to maintain European anti-Russian unity.

  10. Carla

    Re: Half Moon Bay Mass Shooting — “A motive for the deadly mass shooting – California’s second in a matter of days – wasn’t immediately known”

    IMO, this statement is almost as inane as the soon-to-be-intoned “thoughts and prayers.”

    When you have multiple GUNZ readily available to everyone in the country, who the hell needs a “motive”? Killing as many people as you feel like killing, whenever you feel like doing it, is just something Americans do.

    1. t

      Killing as many people as you feel like killing, whenever you feel like doing it, is just something Americans do.

      Says it all.

    2. fresno dan

      At first, I thought is was just late reporting about the death toll at Monterey Park – can’t they keep up with the death toll at a massacre? But silly me, I wasn’t keeping up with the number of massacres….

      Seriously, in the future the number of mass shooting per day will rise. Americans will react to this with their typical equinamity toward the death of their fellow Americans…
      Daniel Patrick Monihan was famous for the quote, “defining deviancy down.” I think defining increasing mass shootings down as something to be concerned about is the substitute for that phrase…

      1. Kengferno

        You know, our world is really starting to resemble John Brunner’s classic SF novel Stand On Zanzibar, what with the constant low-level threat of mass murder by “berzerkers”, people so twisted and confused and beaten down by society that running amok is the only thing they can think of to do.

    3. Anthony G Stegman

      It’s important to put things in perspective. Over the past three years more Americans have died from Covid than have die from violent crimes, including mass killings. In fact, more people die in car accidents each year than die from violent crime. The hand wringing about guns and the Second Amendment is overwrought. According to CDC data less than 20 thousand deaths in the year 2020 were attributed to firearms. Meanwhile, in the same year the number of deaths due to automobile accidents was double that of firearms related deaths,

    4. Sideshow Bob

      If you slice gun murders/deaths by demographic groups you find there is a particular subset that does the vast majority of the killing and dying. If you remove this subset from the statistics you find that gun violence is pretty rare.

      We could save a lot of lives if we could directly address the violence issue in this subset of the population instead of pretending its randomly distributed with no demographic trends.

      If you live in a place where you don’t have to worry about people entering your home or property with criminal intent you have something to be grateful for.

  11. FredsGotSlacks

    I was hoping to see mention of this in today’s links but perhaps it was there yesterday or earlier and I missed it? Was curious what the take of the commentariat here would be. I’m seeing all the usual suspects in the mainstream but even some more sane independent voices claiming this proves all the “Russia, Russia, Russia” madness vindicated. I’m going to assume for now that Russiagate still is what it is (nonsense, right?) but I don’t know enough on the subject to parse this out myself.

    1. Detroit Dan

      How would an FBI agent violating US sanctions on Russia validate Russiagate? Where is the Trump connection? What is the purported Russian government connection and motive? What have you heard to suggest that this somehow supports “Russia, Russia, Russia”?

    2. fresno dan

      O My Got! Now Putin is bribing our wonderful FBI agents!!! The purest, most honest, noblest people EVAH…excent for all those cases of being bought by commies… Commies Using Money to advance their nefarious schemes!! Imagine!
      Not only that, but China is also bribing our wonderful FBI agents – using filthy, filthy lucre. Indeed, some say the Chinese are even bribing the son of our illustrious President (no, not that one, the current Presiden’ts son).
      These rotten commie scoundrels – don’t they understand money – how good money is, and that it should never be used for evil?

      1. Jeremy Grimm

        Instead of “FBI agents are the purest, most honest, noblest people EVAH”
        I believe you were supposed to say:
        “FBI agents are the kindest, bravest, warmest, most wonderful human beings ever known.”

      2. ambrit

        It just supports the quip attributed to Marx that the capitalists will sell the evil (insert derogatory name here,) the rope to hang said capitalists with. I wonder if Mr. Marx ever considered that money itself will serve the function of the rope?

      3. skippy

        Wellie we do have a naturalized ex air force pilot here in Oz being extradited for training Chinese fighter pilots, private business that only caught others attention after the SMO.

  12. Katniss Everdeen

    RE: Why Is Pete Buttigieg Refusing to Crack Down on Airlines’ Scams? Jacobin

    The behavior prompted thirty-four attorneys general to write to Buttigieg on December 16 asking his agency to “require airlines to advertise and sell only flights that they have adequate personnel to fly and support, and perform regular audits of airlines to ensure compliance and impose fines on airlines that do not comply.”

    The letter, submitted as part of the rulemaking process for a still-delayed consumer protection proposal at Buttigieg’s agency, also noted that the proposed rule “includes no provision that would correct this practice and that would prevent airlines from advertising and selling tickets for flights that they cannot reasonably provide.”

    Despite the demands and subsequent holiday travel debacle, Buttigieg’s agency has been delaying the rulemaking process amidst industry pushback….

    “Selling” something that you know you cannot deliver, collecting the money in advance and then slow-walking or refusing a refund used to be called fraud. You have to wonder how much of airlines’ “earnings” are the result of this practice. (Talking heads on cnbc this morning were touting airline stocks since they “couldn’t remember the last time they took a flight with empty seats.” I bet.)

    Here is Briahna Joy Gray interviewing Bill McGee, who is quoted in the article, about this issue. Interesting history of how deregulation of the industry by Jimmy Carter led to investing all power to prevent what’s now happening in the secretary of transportation, the position that mayo pete got as a booby prize for dropping out of the race for prez nomination.

    Actually I guess I should have said that the travelling american public got the booby prize when they got pete.

    Tip from McGee: There is only one hard and fast rule when your flight is cancelled–you are due a CASH refund. “Vouchers” for future travel expire. Demand the cash.

    1. Big River Bandido

      I noted that the article petered out without ever coming close to answering the question in the headline.

      The left will never get anywhere without naming people as well as their actions what they actually are. It is not possible to be “nice” while describing truly horrible people and their actions.

  13. Wukchumni

    Hikikomori, the Japanese phenomenon of extreme social isolation is going global ZMEScience
    I like to do extreme social isolation with friends, if we pick the right trail, or more than likely the right off-trail, we’ll not see another soul the whole day. I’m surrounded by 8 billion of us, its a rare treat to not meet another person in say 10 miles of walking @ a bullshitting pace where you never traipse any faster than you can talk.

    1. Jeremy Grimm

      My teenage son became a Hikikomori. After spending a year in his room, only coming out to get something to eat he developed and acted out a serious psychosis. It took a two year court battle and more money than I like to recall to move him out of the grasp of the legal system and into the state
      mental health system where he currently resides.

      I believe the description of Hikikomori in the linked article little corresponds with my own experience and perceptions regarding this condition. “Loneliness” even “social isolation” hardly describes what afflicted my son, and makes a poor beginning for this article — “extreme social isolation” comes a tiny bit closer. To say then that “strong levels of psychological distress and angst … [at] the mere thought of renouncing this lifestyle” greatly understates the case. Efforts to intrude upon a Hikikomori’s world not infrequently elicit physical attack. The speculation that “in families who aren’t as well-off, potential hikikomori would be forced to go to work” is completely unfounded. I believe it would be more accurate to speculate that “in families who aren’t as well-off, potential[?] hikikomori” end up as homeless on the streets. Had I been fortunate enough to find a psychologist or psychiatrist competent to help me deal with my son’s illness there is no way I could have compelled him to attend or respond any efforts at diagnosis or treatment. A housecall by a psychologist or psychiatrist seems quite absurd, and again there is little that could have elicited my son’s cooperation.

      I admit there were traumas at home and at school that might have played a role in my son’s illness. My son also had intrapersonal problems and anxieties which inclined him to avoid social situations. The Internet and all its charms and video games all played a role in the evolution of my son’s illness. This article suggests a range of problems which may play a role in triggering Hikikomori, all but the one problem I believe lays at the root of Hikikomori behaviors. Humankind has crafted a Society where growing numbers of young adults find themselves facing life in a world where they cannot ‘win’ no matter how they play the game — like a rat that finds itself in a Skinner box where they get an electric shock if they turn right, an electric shock if they turn left, and a shock if they stand still.

      After anesthetizing and excising the natural interest in learning most children have when they begin school, school grinds on through years of studies made boring and irrelevant. At many schools, like the schools my son and daughter attended, it were as if there are no options other than leaving high school a loser condemned to work at low-paid, boring, and often unpleasant jobs, possibly continuing to live at their parents house — or leaving high school a winner facing four and more years more demanding studies, often similarly boring and irrelevant. After it all the winners can enter the world carrying a large debt and spend their next decades — if they are lucky — working at a better paid but boring and unpleasant job. I remember taking both of my kids to see the windowless cubicle where I worked on one of those take your kids to work days that were popular for a while. After seeing it, neither of my two kids wanted anything to do with the kind of work I did for forty years.

      1. JBird4049

        Western civilization in general and the United States especially have spent decades destroying the economy, wrecking the educational system, corrupted both the legal and political system, as overpriced and crapified any kind of live entertainment, museums, fairs, sports, movies, heck even religion has folded.

        If I was even more suspicious, I could believe that this is all part of a plan, but that would actually mean thirty to fifty years of planning and doing by some nefarious, hidden organization. That doesn’t mean that some people would not take advantage of (what is to them) convenient convergence of various trends.

    2. malchats

      I read the part of the article titled “What causes hikikomori” and mentally summed up the listed factors as “life.” No wonder it’s so prevalent. And I suspect I’m a “soft” hikikomori myself.

  14. fresno dan
    The former FBI official busted Monday for allegedly taking illegal foreign payments played a key role in the bureau’s controversial “Russiagate” probe of former President Donald Trump — and a “defensive briefing” of ex-rival Hillary Clinton’s lawyers.
    Irony, thy name is FBI agent. Poetic justice is a b*tch – I just hope the dossier on Mcgonigal is better than the one on Trump. By the way, wasn’t the action character in the TV series in the TV series the Simpsons named Mcgonigal? Oh, it was McGarnagle. Hopefully, little Billy will come forward for McGarnagle…whoops, I mean Mcgonigal.

    1. Screwball

      I’m not sure exactly how, but my PMC friends said this is the smoking gun that proves Russia put Trump in the White House. They can’t understand why this story isn’t on the front page of every newspaper in the country, and the leading story on all the news channels (except Fox of course). They did say it was covered by Maddow fairly extensively on her show the other night. Of course…

      They will never get Russiagate out of their brains. Russiagate has become part of their anatomy as much as their hatred of Trump.

      1. fresno dan

        I guess the people who think this proves Russiagate was true use this as evidence that Russia does bribe USA officials. OK, I see their point. Russia has spies, (like we do) and they are not angels. Neither are we.
        But one could just as easily argue that Trump was the patriot, or at least the legally elected president (Ugh – that does make me gag, but I have said it a million times – I detest Trump but I detest framing people even more). If Russia bribes US officials, you can just as easily claim Russia was bribing people like Comey or other FBI agents to frame Trump and undermine the legitimate US election of Trump. I really don’t think the Russiagate investigation has been investigated from EITHER the standpoint of it being grossly, GROSSLY incompetent, or illegal
        I am not a Trump fan – if real evidence had been found against Trump, lock him up. But the man who the dems santified, Mueller, investigated and couldn’t find a thing. Could Biden stand as an extensive investigation from an opponent???

      2. Stephen Gardner

        I read the charges. Unless I missed something it was all about Albania and Kosovo. No mention of Trump or Russia in my admittedly quick scan.

  15. Wukchumni

    Expert: $225 million needed to replace more than 35,000 lead water pipes in RI WPRI

    Early results of lead testing show alarming levels in some Delaware school drinking water Delaware News Journal

    Des Moines Water Works recommends replacing thousands of lead pipes KCCI

    Flint residents urged to filter water as bottled water donations end amid ongoing water crisis ABC News

    A lot of caterwauling in regards to bad water calling.

    We dodged a drought bullet, for I think another severely dry year would’ve been curtains for many in the golden state, rare good news.

    1. Katniss Everdeen

      The poisoned water will have to wait. The “world’s greatest deliberative body” has come out of hibernation this morning to grill the perps who made Taylor Swift tickets expensive and hard to get.

      I read once that, at the time the Roman Empire fell, they were making plans to flood the Colosseum so they could have boat battles instead of just those boring lion / gladiator things.

      Bread and Circuses. Or maybe I should say Eggs and Circuses. In any event, the senators have decided to deal with the circuses first.

      1. Jason Boxman

        To the extent they focus on real antitrust implications and solutions, and as Matt Stoller has written repeatedly, there is bipartisan interest in this, I think this hearing could potentially be a good thing, shockingly. We’ll see.

  16. fresno dan
    Richard Barnett, who famously put his feet up on a desk in Speaker Nancy Pelosi’s office as rioters swarmed the Capitol on Jan. 6, 2021, was convicted by a Washington jury Monday of all eight charges he faced, including four felonies.
    Barnett took the stand in his own defense, contending that he was “pushed” into the Capitol by the Jan. 6 mob and then roamed around looking for a bathroom until he stumbled into Pelosi’s suite. He said he took the envelope because he had bled on it and viewed it as a “biohazard.” He left an American flag on a side table inside the office as well. He said that he was angered by police actions outside the Capitol, disoriented after being maced in the rotunda and made overheated statements in the moment.
    Speaking to reporters outside the courthouse, Barnett vowed to appeal the verdict and said he had “absolutely not” received a fair trial, chiefly because he faced a jury in liberal-leaning Washington, D.C.
    “I think the venue should have been changed. This is not a jury of my peers. I don’t agree with that decision. But I do appreciate the process. And we are surely going to appeal,” Barnett said.
    I do find the question of being tried by a jury of one’s peers an interesting one. But I think most people would think trying the case where it occurred makes sense. If he had been tried in Arkansas, I think he still would have been convicted, but of less serious charges. And I doubt he will come anywhere close to being sentences to 20 years, never mind serving what ever the full sentence is.

    1. Wukchumni

      A 1/6’er got sentenced to 4 years in jail for smoking a doobie in the Capital building, it was as if we were back in the 70’s in Texas in terms of draconian jail terms for possession.

      1. fresno dan

        Look at the laws congress passes, and doesn’t pass. Then consider a congressman and an imbecile – but I repeat myself. Looking at what congress does, are they all high on marijuana already, or should they all be high on jarijuana?

    2. Katniss Everdeen

      Barnett, 62, was convicted of obstructing Congress’ Jan. 6 proceedings, a charge that carries a 20-year maximum sentence, as well as disorderly conduct in the Capitol while carrying a dangerous weapon: a “Hike ‘N Strike” walking stick that doubles as a stun weapon. He was also convicted of stealing an envelope from the desk in Pelosi’s suite.

      Ashli Babbitt’s mother was present in the courtroom when the verdict was read. The cop who shot and killed her unarmed daughter was never charged.

      Feet on the desk and a “purloined” envelope versus murder of an unarmed woman. 20 years in prison versus continued federal employment and taxpayer funded pension. I don’t know why anyone should be upset by this. It sounds pretty legit to me. This is the united states after all, and we are a nation of laws.

        1. Carolinian

          If we concede your point can we agree that selective outrage exists on both sides of the political aisle? Or, to put it another way, why is “all lives matter” a controversial statement?

          In fact the outrage over Babbit can just as easily be ascribed to the hypocrisy of the Dems rather than assume it is because she was white. Indeed Pelosi–who by the way is white–seems to feel no police action or legal prosecution is too extreme when it comes to defending her.

        2. fresno dan

          A Wichita, Kan., police officer who shot and killed a man in a “swatting” prank that went horribly wrong will not face charges over the incident, officials say. Andrew Finch, 28, died after a bogus 911 call brought police to his home days after Christmas.

          As NPR reported, “Finch appeared at the door to the house and, following verbal commands from the officers, stepped forward with his hands up. At numerous points, however, he reached for his waistband.*** Fearful that Finch was going for a firearm, an officer discharged one round” and killed him.

          Finch’s relatives have said they also want accountability from the officers who were involved in his death. The family filed a lawsuit against the city of Wichita and members of the police force. In the media, they’ve described the ordeal of that night, from having to step over Finch’s body to being handcuffed and taken downtown for questioning.

          “What gives the cops the right to open fire?” his mother, Lisa Finch, said in January. “Why didn’t they give him the same warning they gave us? That cop murdered my son over a false report.”
          I imagine we agree quite a bit, especially about police. But this guy (Finch) was white, and the police kill white people quite a bit. The problem is the indiscriminate killing by police, and the great amount of unaccountability.

          *** NO NPR, he didn’t reach for his waistband. He was shot dead with his hands in the air.

          1. hk

            I think this is another example of how PMC lost the point. The problem is abuse of power by the police, period. Somehow, I get the sense that they will be happy to see massive abuse of police power as long as 1) it does not affect themselves and their friends; 2) and all have nots are equally subject to it. To be honest, i am not so sure if we are very far from that utopia of equitability.

            1. JBird4049

              Blacks are less than 15% of the population, which means that even with the grotesque amounts of abuse by the legal system of them the slim majority of victims are white. Usually poor and working class at that. And it is the native Americans who are the greatest victims of crime, social dysfunction, and abusive policing, which people do not talk about especially since the destruction of AIM (American Indian Movement) in the 70s.

              But really, with the growing power and increasing corruption of the police-security state, we are all going to be more equal under the law than we might believe in the near future.

  17. JEHR

    I have read with great enjoyment the new words of old songs that have appeared in the comments section. I once tried my hand at making up a new story based on an old, well known one by Jorges Luis Borges. The link is the original “fiction” called “On Exactitude in Science.”

    On Exactitude in Finance

    . . . In that Empire, The Craft of Accounting attained such Perfection that the balance sheet of a single Province occupied the entirety of the City, and the balance sheet of the Central Bank, the entirety of a Province. In time, those Unconscionable Profit Sheets no longer satisfied, and the Financiers Private Equity Guild struck an Account at the Treasury whose size was that of the Globe, and which coincided point for point with it. In the following Generations, who were not so fond of the Study of Accounting as their forebears had been, saw that vast Global Finance was Useless, and not without some Pitilessness was it, that they delivered it up to the Inclemencies of Deflation and Recession. In the Deserts of the West, still today, there are Tattered Ruins of all the Financial Accounts, inhabited by Debt and Suffering; in all the Land there is no Relic of the former Regulations of Finance.

  18. Joe Renter

    I believe there were a couple cavalry charges in WW2, from reading the book,” The long walk”, from Slavomir Rawicz, a Polish officer in the calvary.

  19. Scotland

    I’d like to suggest not using the topic header “Gunz” and feel a more appropriate choice would show more respect to those directly impacted by gun violence. Thank you

    1. flora

      I’d also suggest not using the topic header “Gunz” because it seems like a deliberate smear against the character of the the millions of law abiding and gun owning citizens in the US. / My 2 cents.

      1. Late Introvert

        I suggest those millions get together and pass some good laws keeping them out of the non-law abiding. Or not, just feel put upon instead.

        1. JBird4049

          More laws?

          I am sick of hearing constantly for more laws, walls, alarms, police, and fear, all to keep us “safe.” Has any of it worked?

          Booze, nicotine, weed, coke, meth, smack, and guns have all been subjected to vast amounts of resources trying to stop their use. Back when I had a social life, I could have gotten any of it even if it was strictly illegal or I was too young, even with an obstacle of being a white middle/working class dude. The only really difficult one would have been the gun, again for being white and clean cut, but only just difficult.

          Honestly, it is annoying to keep hearing over the decades the yelling for new laws, increasingly draconian punishments, and more (corrupt) police to save us from the latest evil, no good, really awful, bad thing. This is about having yet more laws that will be used to abuse people not of the right political affiliation, economic class, religious beliefs, or skin color. Especially that last with gun and drug laws.

          Of course, we could try to fix our economic, educational, medical, legal, and political systems.

          But maybe I am wrong. We can a constitutional amendment outlawing what we don’t want around. Maybe that would work.

  20. Mikel

    There were a few comments about current mass shooting tallies. Here’s a rough estimate (probably on the low end) about how the beginning of the year is stacking up:
    “There was the mass shooting near a youth center in Allentown, Pennsylvania, and the one at a Subway restaurant in Durham, North Carolina. Another took place behind a beer hall in Oklahoma City, and another at a strip club outside Columbus, Ohio. Two mass shootings ended parties in different Florida cities.

    And that was just on New Year’s Day.

    By the start of the fourth week in January, the tally had grown to include at least 39 separate shootings in which four or more people were injured or killed, according to the Gun Violence Archive, outlining a striking explosion of violence across a range of sites in nearly every corner of the nation that killed at least 69 people….”

    “…There is little official consensus on what constitutes a mass shooting; different organizations use different measures. But so far this year, the vast majority of the 38 shootings in which at least four people were struck by bullets — the measure used by the Gun Violence Archive, a research group — attracted little to no attention beyond the areas where they took place…”

  21. Watt4Bob

    Why is no one talking about Wall $treet halting trading on a bunch of stocks for undisclosed reasons?

    I thought Mr. Market was perfect, and should not be interrupted in its perfect determination of value?

    1. cnchal

      The ‘value’ mind trap. ‘Price’ is the only thing Mr Market cares about and Wall $treet gets right when calling it ‘price action’ in the process of fleecing everyone else.

    2. Wukchumni

      Of all the mysteries of the stock exchange there is none so impenetrable as why there should be a buyer for everyone who seeks to sell.

      John Kenneth Galbraith

  22. Tom Stone

    “Stabbed in the Back”, where have I heard that
    There are now lots of MANPADS floating around and there will be a whole lot of enraged and not even marginally sane people looking to get even with those that betrayed them.
    BoJo and Biden will be high on “The List” and ‘Toria and Bobbie not far behind unless I miss my guess.
    The Juice will be part of the evil Cabal because it’s traditional and fortunately Zelensky’s ancestry is appropriate.
    It’s going to be a very interesting year.

    1. Mikel

      I’m thinking the NC songwriting crew can come up with a good little song for that using the O’Jays’ “Backstabbers”.

      Yes, that’s a request…

  23. spud

    just a historical refresher.

    Clinton directed her maid to print out classified materials
    By Paul Sperry
    November 6, 2016

    “As secretary of state, Hillary Clinton routinely asked her maid to print out sensitive government emails and documents — including ones containing classified information — from her house in Washington, DC, emails and FBI memos show. But the housekeeper lacked the security clearance to handle such material.

    In fact, Marina Santos was called on so frequently to receive emails that she may hold the secrets to emailgate — if only the FBI and Congress would subpoena her and the equipment she used.”

    1. skippy

      Hay spud …

      Its always informative except the bit about the Clinton family being ground zero part, as if it was not them, then no one else was going to fill the role. Worst it ignores or provides cover for those that owned him and her. Better yet all the history behind it all and they just happened to be the choice of others to drive a social political agenda.

      I mean Bill and Bush Jr on a Haiti beach so pro sport gear would not suffer any loss of sales or how Raygun really kicked things off, so I think the advocacy behind it all is more critical than any political operative e.g. its not called a duopoly for nothing …

      1. spud

        many countries including our own have had truth commissions. if you do not have them, then when it becomes intolerable for the people, you end up with the french revolution, or a stalin or a mao.

        then a whole lot of people end up dead, including the paid for shills.

        i would rather have truth commissions.

        with out them, we ended up with the most progressive president since FDR, NOT! and we face WWIII.

        hillary was in on the pivot to asia, even threatening china and russia with a ring of military bases, with missills aimed at them till they bowed down on their knee’s.

        discrediting them is a must. just like the trampoline jumper in germany. she was and still is being exposed for what she is.

        TDS was started by hillary, as well as russiagate, and most likely had a hand in document gate.

        by ignoring the power that they wield, you are just asking for more of the same.

        they are not going away till we make them go away.

  24. Insouciant Iowan

    “Since indebted employees tend to become self-disciplined at the workplace on the fear of losing their job and defaulting, this paper argues that the post-1970 rise of household financialisation is associated with the decline of strike activity.”

    Duh! Workers at Ingredion’s Cedar Rapids unit for grain processing just end a 6-month strike. How’d they manage? A strike fund and working spouses, most likely–and a steep skilled-worker shortage.

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