Links 2/11/2023

‘We’re exhausted’: Cat feeders hope more can be done to stop stray dog attacks Channel News Asia

Don’t feed the bears! But birds OK, new Tahoe research shows AP

Signals from outer space: The FOUR times scientists have believed we were contacted by aliens… as ‘impossible’ spinning object 4,000 light years away sends repeated radio bleeps to earth Daily Mail


Meet the Man Fueling Clean Energy Opposition in the Midwest Distilled Earth

Corruption endangers world’s shrinking fisheries AP


New York to drop masking requirements in hospitals, health care facilities Politico


Avoiding catastrophe will be the true test of fractious US-China relations FT

Why the high cost of conflict may be the best hope for peace in the Taiwan Strait South China Morning Post

The United States Wants to Make Taiwan the Ukraine of the East: The Sixth Newsletter (2023) Tricontinental

South China Sea: disputed Spratly Islands now home to supermarkets for PLA soldiers South China Morning Post

Chinese C919’s engine malfunctions in flight test Asia Times (Rev Kev).

President Tsai confers honor on Paul Wolfowitz Taipei Times

US Marines to join Japanese guarding remote islands Asia Times (Rev Kev).


Ports, pylons, cement: the best assets behind Adani’s debt pile FT

Why is democratic India helping Russia avoid Western sanctions? Christian Science Monitor

India’s Coal Imports From Russia Pick up Pace Hellenic Shipping News

India Wants to Replace Valentine’s Day With ‘Cow Hug Day’ Smithsonian

The Koreas

Rural Extinction in Numbers: Data The Blue Roof

Dear Old Blighty

Mutiny at the BBC: “Almost everyone has left. No one does any journalism” The New Statesman

A family affair. Like Game of Thrones:

South of the Border

Biden Can’t Ignore America’s Role in Brazil’s Insurrection Foreign Policy. Which “role”? Trump (non-spook), of course, not Lava Jato (spook).

Lula Sealed His Deal With The Devil By Condemning Russia During His Meeting With Biden Andrew Korybko’s Newsletter

New Not-So-Cold Cold War

Ukraine pleads for ammunition ‘immediately’ as Russia steps up attack FT

Report: Pentagon wants to revive top secret commando program in Ukraine Responsible Statecraft

How far is President Biden willing to ascend the escalation ladder on Ukraine? The Hill

World War Three is the only way to stop Putin, with NATO countries having to ‘fight for real’, warns Russia’s former richest man – now exiled in Britain Daily Mail. Khodorkovsky

* * *

Putin to deliver State of the Nation Address to Federal Assembly on Feb 21 — Kremlin Tass

Estonia’s Robin Hood plan: Take from Russia to give to Ukraine Politico

Part 5: The fatal shots of the Maidan (Google translate) Anti-Spiegel

Biden Administration

US shoots down high-altitude, car-sized object over Alaska Channel News Asia

Media ‘Spy Balloon’ Obsession a Gift to China Hawks FAIR

Millions of Californians applied for Biden student loan relief. What is the holdup? McClatchy


Schools become flashpoint for Republicans eyeing White House AP

Report: 23 Baltimore Schools Had Zero Students Proficient in Math Jonathan Turley

The road to the White House runs through South Carolina Politico

‘Smut smear inquisition.’ White House, allies begin to push back on Comer’s offensive. McClatchy. Managing to avoid “Hunter,” “Biden,” and “laptop.” And “Ukraine.” That’s their story and they’re sticking to it.

Police State Watch

Video Raises Questions About Tortuguita’s Death at “Cop City” Amid Permit Appeal Truthout (J.)


UnitedHealthcare incentivizes healthy patient behavior Axios. “UnitedHealthcare Rewards will provide up to $1,000 annually to members who use wearable devices to prove they’re being healthy.”

The Bezzle

Do Chatbots Get Us Any Closer To Human-Level Artificial Intelligence? Big Technology

Two Tesla 10-K Topics – Part 1 Francine McKenna, The Dig

Our Famously Free Press


The Guardian’s links to the slave trade Unherd

Imperial Collapse Watch

Former acting Defense chief under Trump calls for military budget to be cut in half The Hill

Sports Desk

The wretched excess isn’t the football:

Class Warfare

A Black Professor Trapped in Anti-Racist Hell Compact. Microaggressions.

Tema Okun on Her Mythical Paper on White Supremacy (podcast) Deconstructed

Antidote du jour (via):

See yesterday’s Links and Antidote du Jour here.

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About Lambert Strether

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


  1. Not Again

    I was just on Telegram. There are videos of 16 year old Ukrainian kids being given 7 bullets and told to “protect the homeland” while digging foxholes in Bakhmut. We are watching ethnic cleansing in real time. The world is run by psychopaths.

    1. britzklieg

      I don’t understand your comment… who is giving the bullets and if the kids are Ukrainian, which ethnicity is being cleansed and by whom?

      1. tevhatch

        Many of those kids are from ethnic Russian, ethnic Hungarian, ethnic Roma, and other “illegal” minorities in Ukraine.

    2. The Rev Kev

      Probably find that the Ukrainians are holding back their best fighting age men in the rear for future offenses. But as the battle line still needs to be manned to hold the Russians, they are throwing in teenage kids and grandpas to fill the gaps. Yeah, it is immoral and yeah, they are burning up their seed-corn and true that the present Ukrainian population is already only about half of what is was before the troubles which means that that country will be demographically crippled in the decades to come but hey, what is the alternative? Negotiations?

      1. ambrit

        Consumer! You have been detected using the Neo-‘N’ word. Report immediately to your nearest FEMA re-education facility for “Advanced Sensitivity Training.” Your internet connection will now be suppressed until you submit proof of ASTness.

        1. Bärverbockt

          Hilarious. But I think you need to dial back the direct authorianism and create a “softer” version with smileys, typos and turns of phrase used by Millenials.

          1. ambrit

            True enough, but the “softer version” will not be rolled out until near complete conformity has been achieved. Until then, the “Un Sensitive” must be made to understand the seriousness of their deviancy. The inducement of internalized fear and self loathing is central to the task of “Re-education.” Struggle sessions aren’t called such for no reason.
            Be safe fellow consumer.

            1. JBird4049

              That is almost… a Cultural Revolution in construction.

              Who says that our Beloved Leaders do not learn anything?

              Honestly, it can be considered that in the West, we have had an increasingly strong, but soft totalitarianism gradually imposed on us for decades with the iron fist in the soft glove coming out occasionally, and if that does not deter the few troublemakers left, out will come just the fist.

              1. agent ranger smith

                At what point does it become fair to refer to the Wokextortionists as Cultural Maoists pursuing their Cultural Revolution with Struggle Sessions and targetted brainwashing just to show they have the power to do it? And to amuse themselves by reveling in their own power to do it?

                Is the Wokestortionist Cult Movement merely “PMC”? Or does it trace all the way back to thousands of New Leftists who lost their overt battle against the “establishment” and decided to do the long work of infesting Americas Schools of Education in order to lay the groundwork of spreading their Wokextortionist contamination throughout American culture and society and politics?

                Do we need to purge all the aging New Leftists and all their mentees and proteges out of all the Schools of Education in particular and out of Academe in general to stop the gangrene at its source?

                  1. ambrit

                    I’m wondering if what we here are referring to as ‘Woke’ in all it’s manifestations is not so much an agenda as a response to evolutionary pressures.
                    The old tyme “Leftists” I remember were pretty much a utopian bunch. Not many hard eyed realists among them. When such hard eyed realists did arise, said ‘hers’ took control of the ‘movement’ and the devolution from utopian idealism to rent extracting “wealth accumulation” began in earnest.
                    Human nature doesn’t seem to change at all, much less slowly.
                    Greetings from the Hill Folk in the cold and rainy North American Deep South. I hope that you and yours are doing well.
                    Stay safe.

                1. JBird4049

                  Our we sure that it is *just* the Wokehistas? American Friendly Fascism was originally deployed to make Neoliberalism safe from Democracy. One can even go back to the First World War as well as the Cold War when not thinking approvingly of American Free Market Capitalism was double plus ungood and good old Minitru aka the Ministry of Truth would lovingly correct you.

                  People have been getting fired, sidelined into dead-end careers, or arrested on often manufactured evidence for most of American history. It is almost as effective as shooting or disappearing someone. “Why, you aren’t a socialist, comrade?” is little different than “Do you know about your micro aggressions?” or “Are you a liberal/conservative?”

                  The United States does soft totalitarianism really well. Only the targets change occasionally with the monied class never being targeted.

                  1. ambrit

                    Indeed, I’ll venture to say that the “monied class” shifts about demographically over time. Imagine telling a Captain of Industry of the Robber Baron Era that the fellows who do the mathematical computations that guide the running of the enterprise would one day become Barons in their own right.
                    Times change; human nature does not.

    3. hunkerdown

      As the cloud is just someone else’s computer, the world is just someone else’s imaginary. All this catastrophic emotional attachment to “worlds” is unhealthy and the vast majority of us are better off walking right out of them before they are brought down on our own heads.

      1. Joe Renter

        Yes, being held in a world where the only attachment is an emotional one is not healthy. However, it is a process all must go through until one raises up in consciousness to the mental level (many, lifetimes). Humanity is slowly doing that. Unfortunately, those who are running the show are using those mental powers to exploit the rest of us. Until we figure out how to play nice as in sharing and giving a damn about fellow human beings and the planet the shit show will continue. My take on it.

    4. digi_owl

      And yet this time the egomaniac in charge is doing speaking tours to standing ovations rather than contemplating suicide in a bunker in Kiev.

  2. Chris


    I can’t keep up.
    Are we now endorsing single source, anonymous conspiracy theory reports by cranks trying to advance a narrative, or are we supposed to be skeptical when we hear this type of stuff, especially when all the incentives and motivations don’t seem to line up?
    Is this one of those journalistic principals thats bad when the “mainstream media” does it, but fine for the useful idiot “citizen journalists” who only get promoted when their narratives fill a roll, and then can be dumped as needed.

    Or is the veracity of these reports really not the issue anymore, it’s just about airing any possible alternative narrative, creating enough media Flak, and clouding every issue for the clicks?
    If there’s anything to learn about the Maddow Russiagate fiasco, is airing ludicrous stories isn’t about informing the republic, it’s about creating a narrative, that even after it’s been disproved, half the audience still believes it.

    1. The Rev Kev

      When you have a well-known criminal announce that they are going to commit a major crime, confirm that they will do it to a reporter as a promise, be one of the very few people in the world that have the means to actually commit this crime, the crime actually happens, the “known associates” of this criminal are virtually high-fiving each other over this crime, well, you don’t get to scratch your head and say ‘Golly gee willikers. I wonder who might have done that?’

      1. fresno dan

        I think one of the most telling pieces of evidence is the lack of reporting (or more accurately the lack of questioning and investigation of who actually blew nord stream up). Think Sherlock Holmes and the dog that didn’t bark in the night…

        1. The Rev Kev

          Very apt that. The silence is deafening. And it tells you everything about the modern media that you need to know.

          1. Sibiryak

            The Guardian (live blog) today:

            Nato should hold an emergency meeting to discuss recent findings about September explosions at the Nord Stream gas pipelines, Russia’s foreign ministry spokesperson Maria Zakharova said late on Saturday.

            Investigative journalist Seymour Hersh, who won a Pulitzer Prize in 1970, said in a blogpost on Wednesday, citing an unidentified source, that US navy divers had destroyed the pipelines with explosives on the orders of Joe Biden.

            The White House dismissed as “utterly false and complete fiction” the claim that the US was behind explosions of the Nord Stream gas pipelines, which send Russian gas to Germany.

            Sweden and Denmark, in whose exclusive economic zones the blasts occurred, have concluded the pipelines were blown up deliberately, but have not said who might be responsible.

            The US and the Nato have called the incident “an act of sabotage”. Moscow has blamed the west for the unexplained explosions that caused the ruptures. Neither side has provided evidence.

      2. Michaelmas

        Rev Kev: When you have a well-known criminal announce that they are going to commit a major crime, confirm that they will do it to a reporter as a promise, be one of the very few people in the world that have the means to actually commit this crime, the crime actually happens, the “known associates” of this criminal are virtually high-fiving each other over this crime, well, you don’t get to scratch your head and say ‘Golly gee willikers. I wonder who might have done that?’


        And one thing more: the Biden administration, Washington, and the US are free to provide a plausible account of who did it, if they did not. It’s that simple.

        They won’t because they can’t.

    2. pjay

      I’m not quite clear on the target of your comment. Are you talking about Hersh here? If so, are you actually comparing him to a “useful idiot ‘citizen journalist'”? Or are you referring to Helmer?

      Hersh’s account is certainly a single source “conspiracy theory.” But the reason it is taken seriously, of course, is that Hersh has a lifetime of work in which his sources, judgement about sources, and information derived from them have proven accurate. Also, so far “all the incentives and motivations” in Hersh’s account *do* seem to line up with the facts that are available.

      Of course single anonymous sources are problematic. We’ll see what evidence emerges in the future. But this is hardly your typical “useful idiot” here. Perhaps I’m misunderstanding your point.

    3. hunkerdown

      “Endorsement”, oh boy, another heaping helping of synthetic affective casuistry from the materially useless professional-managerial class. The PMC has no epistemic or affective authority whatsoever in the world outside of their bubblistic phantasy and all of you need to stop posing as if you do. I’m getting third-hand embarrassment from your boss reading this.

    4. Lambert Strether Post author

      > anonymous conspiracy theory reports by cranks

      Hersh is not a crank. Nor is the article CT (it’s about a SCAD: State Crime Against Democracy).

      I have no idea where this “are we supposed to” trope came from, and I wish it would go away. The non-tendentious reaction by most to Hersh’s piece was “Show me more.” Not yours, however.

      1. hunkerdown

        That trope is classic NYT epistemology. Based on whatever you might see from backstage, do you suppose they’ll ever come back and answer for themselves, or do you suppose these are just the usual probing attacks from the PMC psy ops?

      2. Carolinian

        Thank you. Hersh’s pitch, if it even is a pitch, is “trust me” based on his distinguished record. The MSM pitch is “trust me” despite a recent history of constant lying and misdirection. They use their “two source” rules and supposed standards as a show to defend themselves while ignoring said standards when convenient.

        Pepe Escobar had a good recent column on Hersh and says that even if some of the details can be challenged the broad sweep has the ring of truth since, after all, who doesn’t believe the US blew up or approved the destruction of the pipelines and the diversion that the Russians did it themselves is ludicrous. Also see this recent Craig Murray comment.

        1. Pelham

          BTW, I know from firsthand experience that the mainstream’s “two source” rule can include a single anonymous source who insists on — or consents to — being described two or more different ways in copy.

        2. Susan the other

          One puzzle if you believe Helmer, which I do, is why does he fail to make the point that because Russia knew all along what was going down and by whom and why, then why didn’t Russia sabotage the sabotage? Maybe just to get it over because it was inevitable? Or to make the point that nothing could distract them from defending their southern borders? Or to make the point that Germany and the EU were the real sacrifice? Or that NATO is dependent on a financial system that probably cannot survive? The list of revelations is long on this subject of two distinct ways of doing business. Blowing up Nordstream was close to a fools errand politically for NATO. Maybe that’s why Seymour was drafted to write a big red herring and call it journalism – to make it look at least a tiny bit heroic as opposed to pointless.

          1. redleg

            Or maybe because Russian interference in the mission could and probably would have led to combat between Russia and NATO right then and there, so doing nothing was the best option to avoid WW3?

          2. Thistlebreath

            Brings to mind the opening scene in “The Appaloosa” in which Marlon Brando slowly trots his magnificent horse down a dusty street in a shabby border town. A snarling cur darts out and snaps at the heels of the magnificent horse, while both horse and rider ignore the threat. Dean Stockwell did a good job as a supporting actor.

        1. JTMcPhee

          Inadvertent FUD?

          So many of us have achieved maximum skepticism that “fact check debunking” becomes the go-to form of mentation.

        2. GramSci

          I think Helmer is jealous of Hersh. The many other converging sources we have (eg. Sikorski, Biden, and Nuland) leave no intelligent doubt about who did it. The only remaining questions are how, exactly? Hersh adds a single source on this lesser question. USians trust Hersh, because he was the Julian Assange of the previous generation, and he has little left to gain by lying.

          Helmer does some good reporting, but often under the illusion that Helmer is the news.

        3. Ashburn

          I found Helmer’s piece practically unreadable and incomprehensible. The little I was able to follow sounded to me like a jealous rant. I note Gilbert Doctorow suggested Helmer was a bit out of touch due to his long residence in Russia.

    5. JohnnyGL

      If a pulizer-prize winning journalist with an extensive track record of breaking monster stories for decades cites an anonymous source…i’m more inclined to believe it.

      If a corporate media outfit with an extensive track record of lying, refuses to admit wrong doing, and shows no remorse for the systematic lying…wants to cite an anonymous source…i’m inclined NOT to believe it.

      1. notabanker

        Nuland and Biden said they were going to do it.
        The P8 US military flight over the pipeline hours before the explosions can be corroborated.
        Certainly the military presence and capabilities were present in the area to perform the operation.
        All circumstantial for sure. But many other aspect of the story could be refuted or corroborated if the media had any interest in covering the story. The fact that they aren’t lends more credence to the report.

        Now, let’s talk about if it isn’t true. If a third party actor, and it would almost certainly have to be a state actor with these capabilities to execute an operation undetected, has actually done without any knowledge of the US, what does that say? Someone committed an act of war against a nuclear power which the US is in a current conflict with. The US is AOK with that? Let the Swedes see if they can figure it out and get back to us?

    6. Martin Oline

      I think the remark by a commenter named Marvin at Moon of Alabama says it all: “Everybody else has one source less than Hersh. Which puts him in the lead.”
      The Bundestag spent a whole hour discussing this report Friday afternoon before it was adjourned because Representative Jürgen Hardt of the CDU asked for the debate to be closed at just before 4 p.m. (amid laughter from his group) because he had to catch his train to Wuppertal. Ray McGovern made the comment that Germany is suffering from a battered wife syndrome on a podcast which can be found on the Crosstalk program found here.

      1. Bärverbockt

        “Battered wife syndome” is an understatement. More like a whore with black eyes and cigarette burns who remains loyal to her pimp.

      2. square coats

        I thought that was a great Crosstalk episode! Ray McGovern has a really lovely and unique sense of humor (while obviously taking seriously what must be taken so).

        It’s also noteworthy in that episode Gilbert Doctorow provides some independent albeit somewhat indirect confirmation of the basic facts laid out in Hersh’s piece.

        Apparently John Mark Dugin also was contacted by a whistleblower this past October who was part of Baltops22 and further confirmed a lot of the information.

        1. Martin Oline

          I love to listen to Ray talk even if he wanders a bit. I am reminded of a retired police Captain who stopped by my bookstore one day to talk. He used to run the vice squad in Des Moines and told me where all the speakeasys, gambling joints, and err, houses of ‘ill repute’ were. One of each were located on opposite corners from my store. I was very sorry that it was his only visit. Months later a friend viewed one place with the intention of buying it. He was confused because nearly all of the rooms on the second floor had sinks about two and a half feet off the floor. I told him it had a bad reputation (family blog).

    7. Realist

      Welcome to the blog!

      I’m not sure what you meant by, “especially when all the incentives and motivations don’t seem to line up?”.

      Cui bono?

      1. Realist

        tldr version for those that don’t want to click through: Various dual passport quizlings, that had infiltrated Exceptional America’s otherwise noble and righteous upper echelons, were hoodwinked by MI6 and WEF to act in ways that weren’t in the US national interest…

        I LoL’d!

      2. Spider Monkey

        Tom Luongo has had an awesome take on the European situation right now. Also he seems like the only person to be mentioning the dissolution of the Euro dollar market and LIBOR which is a massive deal.

    8. Ignacio

      I think that, unlike that “crank” called Sy, you, as a Master in Journalism for VIPs, would almost certainly be able to find thousands of sources willing to tell you “we did it!” and then publish it.

    9. Daniil Adamov

      Part of the reason why this “single source anonymous conspiracy theory” seems at least somewhat credible to me and likely to a lot of people here is that the incentives and the motivations appear to line up exceedingly well. If you think otherwise it would be good of you to go into some detail on that.

    10. JTMcPhee

      FUD. It’s everywhere all the time.

      “We will know our disinformation project is complete when nothing the American (or any other) public believes is true.”

    11. Mikel

      “It appears that neither the source nor Hersh has “direct knowledge” of the history of US-led operations to sabotage and destroy the pipelines which became public more than a year before…”

      Then click on the link to the big “making public” moment.
      “Became public” in how many places again and by what standard?

      At any rate, it would be more useful for Helmer and Hersch to get together, compare notes, and then do another story.
      More looking at it as a continuing investigation is needed, with more cooperation among those deviating from the establishment story (or silence).

    12. TimmyB

      Helmer’s article critical of Hersh’s reporting that the U.S. is responsible for the destruction of the Nordstream pipeline is fact free nonsense. “Stuff Helmer heard in Russia” isn’t the strong evidence Helmer pretends.

  3. LawnDart

    Re; ‘We’re exhausted’: Cat feeders hope more can be done to stop stray dog attacks

    PSA/fyi: fire extinguishers can make for a handy, non-lethal, dog-repellent. It’s almost never a bad idea to keep a small one in the car anyway.

    1. tevhatch

      It’s been an observation that treatment of domestic animals cast aside in each society reflects the care it gives to the poor, though I will note it is a indicator with with many data points outside the trend: for example more was done to punish US Marines killing dogs in Iraq than for killing children. Two queries:

      Is using a fire extinguisher the preferred neo-liberal solution? It sounds about right, being expensive, tolerably cruel, providing temporary relief that damages the environment, followed by rinse and repeat?

      We’re exhausted’: Bird feeders hope more can be done to stop stray cat attacks Would this solution still apply? / Is this solution universal?

      1. LawnDart

        Yeah, better to brain ’em with the fire extinguisher; skin ’em, gut ’em, and cook ’em, keeping the fire extinguisher handy if the BBQ gets outta control.

        Please bring beer.

        1. tevhatch

          So much for spade and neuter. Graduate of which school of BBQ? Cat is less popular than dog, but I’m aware of several schools.

          1. ambrit

            When true hunger strikes, an appropriate method of preparation will be found for any and all food sources.
            I think that the one thing that I personally would not stoop to is cannibalism. [At least I hope I do not stoop so low.]

      2. Aaron

        Paralleling my thoughts. What happened to mace? Much more agile in action, without the nasty environmental side effects.
        Then of course, spay and neuter once subdued. These jokes about extinguishing and braining stray animals are just sad.

      1. tevhatch

        Non-Firearms Weapons — Runkle Of The Bailey — YouTube
        In Canada, sometimes using a non-weapon as a weapon can make the legal case worse: i.e.: pepper spray might get you less time in jail than being creative with other spays, self-defence is very strictly measured. I suspect the cops in most USA states would probably be happier with the paperwork of a gun being used under “Stand Your Ground laws” than fire extinguishers or oven spray. The former brings a steady income to license violence industry firms and their lobbyist who form the law to fit, the latter might even draw the ire of industries who promote safe for use in the home of nasty chemicals, and thus counter-formation of laws and amicus curiae briefs.

      2. LawnDart

        It’s actually an old LE way of breaking-up a dog-fight, dog-attack, or whenever fido poses a problem and you can’t or don’t want to shoot them: the hiss or burst of powder or fluid stops them, the water or powder-clowd usually sends them running in the other direction– better than getting bit by physically tryng to seperate them.

        I had a Siscilian neighbor who swore by cat-meat: he was at war with them because they were always pooping on his patio furniture (because cats know). He said that the meat is very sweet, so I would think that a dry-rub would compensate.

        I’m not sure if a fire-extinguisher is a “preferred neoliberal solution,” but I know that kids can be assholes, and that dogs are dogs: better to shoot the kids and nip the little problems in the bud, although spaying or neutering under the guise of gender-affirmation works for me too.

        1. kareninca

          That is a very sad story about your Sicilian neighbor. Animal cruelty is a horrible thing. I am not a cat person, but this makes me wish I lived on another planet from someone who would do that.

    2. JP

      This is from Scientific American not some doomer blog:

      So when the feral cats of Rio de Janeiro began to fall ill, no one at first thought to ask why. Street cats have hard lives anyway, scrounging, fighting and birthing endless litters of kittens. But in the summer of 1998, dozens and then hundreds of neighborhood cats began showing horrific injuries: weeping sores on their paws and ears, clouded swollen eyes, what looked like tumors blooming out of their faces. The cats of Rio live intermingled with humans: Children play with them, and especially in poor neighborhoods women encourage them to stay near houses and deal with rats and mice. Before long some of the kids and mothers started to get sick as well. Round, crusty-edge wounds opened on their hands, and hard red lumps trailed up their arms as though following a track.

      In 2001 researchers at the Oswaldo Cruz Foundation, a hospital and research institute located in Rio, realized they had treated 178 people in three years, mostly mothers and grandmothers, for similar lumps and oozing lesions. Almost all of them had everyday contact with cats. Analyzing the infections and ones in cats treated at a nearby vet clinic, they found a fungus called Sporothrix.

      The various species of the genus Sporothrix live in soil and on plants. Introduced into the body by a cut or scratch, this fungus transforms into a budding form resembling a yeast. In the past, the yeast form had not been communicable, but in this epidemic, it was. That was how the cats were infecting one another and their caretakers: Yeasts in their wounds and saliva flew from cat to cat when they fought or jostled or sneezed. Cats passed it to humans via claws and teeth and caresses. The infections spread from skin up into lymph nodes and the bloodstream and to eyes and internal organs. In case reports amassed by doctors in Brazil, there were accounts of fungal cysts growing in people’s brains.

      1. LY

        No surprise.

        Valley fever is a fungal disease already found in the US and is increasing its range. White nose syndrome fungal disease has decimated bat populations in North America last few decades.

      2. Aumua

        It’s funny that it’s almost as though the videogame and hit show The Last of Us was based on this exact article. Maybe one of the reasons that the show is so compelling for a lot of people is the very plausibility of its particular zombie premise (a rogue fungus taking over people’s brains).

  4. Lexx

    ‘India Wants To Replace Valentine’s Day With ‘Cow Hug Day”

    Were any cows given a few minutes at the mic to input their feelings about humans throwing their arms around the cows’ necks and giving them a squeeze? Personal boundaries observed 364 days of the year but then one morning a year dozen of humans want to get up and close and personal with their affection. Maybe a few try to take the hug ‘to the next level’… ‘I’m sorry! I thought we were having a moment!’

    A few cows are wooed and decide they like the attention, and then the next day they’re just ghosted. ‘Hey, I’m the same cow you were nuzzling yesterday, what happened?!’ Hand holding between couples is verboten, but toying with the affections of cows is okay? That’s so mean.

    1. Bugs

      I was nearly crushed in a narrow alleyway in Varanasi, amidst a group of people fleeing a large bull, and hugs were the last thing on anyone’s mind. Anyways, I was taught that every cow in India belongs to someone and it’s always best to let them go about their cow business.

  5. The Rev Kev

    “Why is democratic India helping Russia avoid Western sanctions?”

    For the same reason that Norway helped the US to blow up the Baltic sea pipelines – money. Money by the boatload. The EU is refusing to buy oil from the Russians. So Russia is shipping that oil to India who refines it and then ships it back to the EU at a premium price. India is figuring that if the EU is stupid enough to go through with this charade, then who are they to refuse to be handed those billions of dollars. Sure, the people of the EU don’t have a say in this but have sky high fuel prices but they do get to feel good about not buying Russian oil. And I believe that the US also buying two hundred thousand barrels a day of “Indian” oil. That is why a coupla days ago the US gave India a free pass to import of Russian oil. So that they would not have an oil shortage if they forced India to stop-

    I guess that as far as oil is concerned, this all makes India the Texas of east Asia.

    1. Dftbs

      Perhaps “democracy versus autocracy” isn’t a relevant analytical lens with which to interpret the world. At best it’s naive at worst, I lean this way, it’s deception.

      There are multiple analytical lens which can be applied to understand reality. Marxist class analysis, Huntingtonian Clash of Civilization, Westphalian national sovereignty, perhaps even new unnamed models: Putin’s multi-polarity or Xi Jingping thought. These may all have some applicability. The last two are employed by the two major sovereigns of the day. But im loathe to admit that even Huntington’s model has some applicability. I don’t think the Russians are wrong when they identify their major antagonists not as the international capitalist class, as their Soviet predecessors did, but as the Anglo-Saxons.

      By their actions those Anglo-Saxons seem to be throwing all their vassals under the bus in order to retain their preeminence within their ever shrinking sphere. One wouldn’t be wrong to identify something like an ethnic-national caste system within the “West”. The Anglo-Saxons at the top, the petite, klein, piccolo and pequeño Euros in lower rungs and the eastern and slav self-deceivers way at the bottom.

      I’m not saying this is a rigid system geopolitical analysis. But it’s infinitely more valid than democracy versus autocracy.

      1. digi_owl

        Democracy = national leaders on Wall Street payroll.

        Autocracy = national leaders that spite Wall Street.

      2. paddy

        democracy and autocracy vis a vis the long war on russia are humpty dumpty words….

        for biden ‘our democracy’ is ‘our rules’ and don’t question the tyranny.

        and rules based world order denies the united nations.

        all fdr’s goodness died in april 1945.

        1. GramSci

          I miss FDR, too. Personally, I believe he was assassinated, but first Henry Wallace had to be taken off the Dem ticket.

      3. eg

        Democracy vs Autocracy is just the latest “othering” strategy now that Communism and Terrorism no longer fill the bill.

        Only the completely clueless don’t know that the West has installed and supported no shortage of autocrats during the last century.

    2. fresno dan

      The same people who worship the market, and any outcome that the market provides must not be modified*, all of a sudden when it interfers with neocon dreams of destroying Russia, the market MUST then be interfered with.
      Sanctions are amusing.
      * no houses for the homeless? No health care for the poor? The market speaks!

    3. Skip Intro

      For me the headline had the answer in the word ‘democratic’. Contrast with the Baerbock formulation of lust for war outranking the will of her voters.

  6. griffen

    This injustice will not stand. The Biden family and Hunter Biden are above reproach! There is nothing to see here, there was never a laptop or ill-gotten proceeds from foreign officials or any corrupt nature of any kind! \SARC

    Yeah, any allies of the Bidens and Democrats can fight that good fight and all that. Quite a few of us believe where there is smoke, there might be a little fire smoldering. But I never served on the board of a Ukrainian company for a cool $50,000 a month, so I’m perhaps out of my league ? Oh and the litany of other potential abuses of power, or access to key figures. You can’t spell grifting with also included ka-ching.

    1. timbers

      Hurry, look over there! We shot it down! We don’t know what it is/was or why we shot it down, but we shot it down and we’ll do it again if we feel like it!

    2. Stephen V

      And, ffs, can we just cut the crap about Classified Documents? I know nothing, but is it not clear that docs in the garage or wherever is just a form of redaction (of Names for crying out loud)? Only the entire document is the redaction…

    3. in_still_water

      It was only a mere $25,000 a month because he had to turn over half of his hard-earned money to his father.

      1. griffen

        That is a hefty allowance to send home to the parental pair every month! I only went through the first two episodes of Tulsa King, but from the series opener and after his release, the Stallone-portrayed mob guy is advised of two things in his post-incarceration life.

        1, go to Tulsa
        2, kick up $5,000 a month to start

    4. Wukchumni

      Gulp Fiction

      Gulp Fiction’s narrative is told out of chronological order and follows three main interrelated stories that each have a different protagonist: Joey Vega, a hitman… a Ukrainian company board member, and Hunter Winnfield, Joey’s business partner.

      The plot revolves around using all legal means possible to retrieve the laptop whose mysterious contents are mostly just speculation, for now.

        1. griffen

          We should change their last name to Smith, or White, or Johnson, and see what entails afterwards. See it’s really true kids, with enough aggregate wealth, power, or pompous authority you too can succeed and do whatever in the hell you wish! Taxes and laws are made for the little folks.

          And not even a pretense of any ethical misgiving, either. This is who they are.

    5. Screwball

      Balloons, classified documents, laptops…I can’t keep up.

      Yesterday I watched a clip of some congress lady named Luna grilling the Twitter people in Congressional testimony, specifically Yoel Roth. I don’t know anything about her, but I thought she did a good job in the part I watched. Of course the CNN article I read didn’t talk about that, and said it was all a GOP witch hunt gone wrong for the most part.

      Funny though, I was also in a conversation with my PMC friends, who still believe in…let’s see…Russiagate, there is no there there on the Hunter laptop story, the Twitter files, or anything else that might shed bad light on their democratic idols they so adore. They bring up an article that was just in WaPo about how much of a liar and nut job this Luna women is. Imagine the Post doing a smear piece on Luna a day after she shreds Roth and the Twitter execs? No, tell me it ain’t so.

      Disclosure: she might be a liar and nut job, but her 5 minutes of fame against the Twitter people were quite good IMO.

      Then, after the narrative managers convinced BlueMAGA the genius of Joe Biden shooting down the balloon – alas, there is ANOTHER one shot down over Alaska. But of course we know nothing about it – so he’s a double hero and a very bad ass man. Don’t screw with Ole Joe.

      Now, just today, I’m reading the classified documents that Trump had (these are really really bad, Joe’s not so much) are connected to ****drum roll**** a laptop. Yep, now Orange Man Bad has ties to a laptop. It sounds like they really got him this time – the walls are closing in… I haven’t thoroughly researched this yet, and maybe I won’t.

      I don’t know how much more I can take. MY BS meter is peaked, it’s leaking oil, shaking, rivets popping, and a little smoke coming out. I’m old, and I honestly can’t remember anytime in my life were I thought I was being constantly lied to. Every damn day, about every damn thing. I honestly don’t believe anything anymore. We live in a sea of BS and we can’t bail fast enough.

      Like the CNN article about the Twitter thing. They don’t even try to report the news – it’s all narrative, buzzwords, opinion, and mostly spin. Facts are obsolete and unpublished.

      Awful. This is a banana republic or worse. Screw all these people.

        1. Screwball

          That wouldn’t surprise me in the least. They will probably pass the war money after a little fight for show, and it will probably be larger then they asked for. Both these parties love war and are probably getting plenty of kickback money from war toy makers to make the money keeps flowing.

          Screw the serfs – they can starve and live in the streets.

      1. Joe Renter

        I feel your pain. Being the sensitive type, it’s tough to cope with this dystopia. My advice is limiting the exposer to MSM, exercise, consider a meditation practice (mindfulness is simple), send thoughts of goodwill to the PMC friends (good karma), adopt a pet (elevate another kingdom below us), get a solid night’s sleep, eat well, and know that evolution is a slow process, and the opportunity to go to infinity and beyond is real!

        1. Ignacio

          Screwball’s post and your comment are important both: the maddening feeling but the need to keep sane and LIVE!, LIVE! – As you say one has to avoid this influencing one’s everyday life and keep the karma as high as possible. Higher than ever if possible. These days I am interacting with job seeking migrants and locals, some with really sad stories behind, and these interactions reinforce my faith in the human individual. It is at the collective scale when we fail miserably.

        2. TomDority

          However, the evolutionary process by which monkeys made men of themselves was considerably slower than the reverse process.
          Echos from the past -1927

      2. tegnost

        I’m old, and I honestly can’t remember anytime in my life were I thought I was being constantly lied to. Every damn day, about every damn thing.

        Same here…
        The TV has become unbearable

      3. JBird4049

        >>>Funny though, I was also in a conversation with my PMC friends, who still believe in…let’s see…Russiagate, there is no there there on the Hunter laptop story, the Twitter files, or anything else that might shed bad light on their democratic idols they so adore. They bring up an article that was just in WaPo about…

        “It is difficult to get a man to understand something, when his salary depends on his not understanding it.”
        Upton Sinclair”

        Please note that the salary is not always about pay. They have tied everything to Democrats=Good, Republicans=Evil. It is not like this all happened at once. The neoliberal NPR and public television of today is very different from that of forty years ago. People have slowly, slowly been mind f****d into true Believers of the Church of the Mighty Wurlitzer.

  7. timbers

    Things are getting seriously bizzarro. Hope this is an off day, but today American officials are now obsessing about…what? They don’t even claim to what it is they’re shooting at. What is the United States Government over-compensating for? Shorter version: We shot something down. We don’t what it is or why we did it, but we shot it down. Meanwhile former Senators come out of the woodwork to defend censorship and FBI crimes while unaffordable healthcare, homelessness and poverty is ignored and all Washington does is plan for more wars.


    Update(1608ET): Pentagon Press Secretary Air Force Brig. Gen. Pat Ryder gave few additional details in a briefing shortly after it was revealed the US military shot down an unidentified object flying over Alaska Thursday night. When questioned about the possibility of second Chinese balloon, Ryder said the US has yet to reach out to China over the latest object.

    The White House has also said that ownership has not been established. Ryder additionally repeated that the aircraft had been seen as a hazard to civilian aviation, and that it was shot down by an F-22 jet with a sidewinder missile. According to more from the Pentagon press briefing:

    The Pentagon cannot say if the object shot down over Alaska was a balloon, it is sure that there were no people on board: Kirby
    Pentagon says object shot down over Alaska “wasn’t an aircraft per say”
    U.S. Military used F-22 aircraft to take down object over Alaska on Friday, using a sidewinder missile: Pentagon
    Ryder says U.S. Army CH-47 helicopters have launched to recover debris from the downed ‘object’ in NE Alaska in the frozen waters near the U.S.-Canadian border.

  8. Lexx

    ‘United Healthcare incentivizes healthy patient behavior’

    Aetna is doing something similar through Hinge Health. They are trying to move their customers over to wearable devices and apps to replace paying for physical therapy altogether. It’s why when I went looking for a local PT I found almost none that still contracts with Aetna; they are 95% ‘out-of-network’.

    There’s not a chance in hell an app could do for me what Sara has done in just three visits. Yesterday I wore my new tennies and insoles (per her list of recommendations for feet like mine) to go shopping and my toes squealed with delight at their newfound freedom of movement. I had just gotten used to being constantly uncomfortable in my footwear. There are so many small observations in human interactions an app couldn’t begin to address, that make the difference in whether a patient finds relief from pain and becomes more active… or not.

    1. griffen

      There is also a certain cringe element to both the suggestible and the insured for wearing a trackable device. United Health is on your side! And now we watch you when you sleep. Santa has nothing on US health insurers. Added thought. Best Healthcare Evah in USA.

      This following anecdote is several years back. But there was definitely a penalty at the open enrollment, first if you were not getting a wellness screening and second if you acknowledged to your employer that you smoked cigarettes. What will insurers conjure forth in the coming decades?

      1. Lexx

        Husband jumps through a few hoops every year to get 10% off our insurance costs, and their response seems to be, ‘Well, if we can get him to jump through those hoops, what other hoops (to our benefit) can we get him to jump through? We just need to provide the right incentives to get our customers to work for us!’ There seems to be a lot of mouse/cheese in play here, or carrot/stick. The stick is taking so long to pay PT’s, they refuse to re-up altogether so most PT’s here are now out-of-network. The choices of live therapists is gone, so why not Hinge? We’re not talking brie here either, more government surplus.

        1. CanCyn

          I have never understood the ‘out of network’ aspect of American healthcare. While my general healthcare is still covered by the government in Ontario, I do some private insurance as part of my retirement benefits. It covers some things, like physiotherapy, not covered by the government. So far when dealing with a PT or someone who provides a covered service, if they don’t deal directly with my insurance company, I pay the service provider and then make a claim to my insurer. Why can’t this happen in the US? I know what services are covered and which are not so I whether or not I will be reimbursed when I pay out of pocket.

          1. Lexx

            At the end of eights weeks, the PT will provide me with a super bill that we’ll send to Aetna, who will subtract this from the limit to out-of-pocket expenses under ‘Out of Network’. Aetna pays once the deductible is paid but at the lower rate of 50%.

            The out-of-pocket max is $12k, but first there is the deductible of $2400. We’ve paid $600 so far. We rarely make the deductible within a year, so it’s really all out-of-pocket/out-of-network the fewer providers sign contracts with Aetna, but… their contract with Husband’s employer says they cover PT, just not necessarily by a human provider now.

          2. Pat

            It is part of the bait and switch that is insurance coverage in America.
            The insurance covers x procedure if:

            You have met your deductible
            It is provided by one of the limited providers that have accepted the insurers terms to be in network.
            You have met the correct steps to qualify for the appointment.

            You may still get partially reimbursed if:
            You can get a doctor they approve of to say you need said service
            And you have met your deductible
            You pay a large portion of the cost and you don’t spend too much where it is all yours.

            The whole point is to demand enough hoops to jump through that little or nothing gets covered. So that all insurance is catastrophic. (And for that they have so many hoops to jump through to show you need healthcare that must be approved by non physicians. Who will delay approval endlessly… well at the vey least they will get you to pay two annual deductibles and multiple monthly premiums since you have forced them to layout money.)

            IOW the big difference is that your country is about providing healthcare, while ours is intent on making middlemen rich who make more if you don’t get it.

          3. Objective Ace

            Why can’t this happen in the US?

            Of course it *could* happen. Just like big pharma *could* charge reasonable mark-ups and not sell insulin for 1000% more than it costs to make. But why would they do that if they can make more money otherwise?

    2. Kouros

      The apps are not to help the individuals. It is for the insurers to have excuses to not pay for treatments. Like car manufacturers with their maintenance schedules. The individual / care got sick / broke down because didn’t follow the prescribed maintenance schedule: think positively, use only certain types and amounts of fuel, have certain mileage on certain parameters, etc.

    3. Spider Monkey

      If the wearables market wasn’t regulated by FDA I think it would be better. They have to deem them to be “safe,” huh? The Apple Watches have had various sensors for years that weren’t yet “approved.” I think between a yearly blood panel and wearable I’ll take that over going to a doctor. Never had a serious condition in my life where I didn’t have to be my own advocate so I wasn’t mistreated. Might as well control it all myself and collect data for myself. At that point since I’m already that far into it i may consider the stupid UHC app.

  9. griffen

    Super Bowl coverage. Rest assured, visitors and local citizens. Any floating balloon or dirigible apparatus high in the sky above will not persist for very long, okay the Goodyear blimp is probably quite safe for all Americans. Our super day of American commercialism, food gluttony and beverage consumption must not be impeded!

    Speaking of the Super Bowl events, I recall previous anecdotes about how this weekend was a virtual party for those seeking adult entertainment employment gigs. Like dancers and strippers used to travel to the host city for the full week. I’m wondering if that continues to be a trend.

    1. Polar Socialist

      If I was a Russian in Vladivostok area or Kamchatka, I’d be sending “Chinese weather balloons” every day to sail over North America. You know, as a gift to China Hawks.

      As a bonus prank, the payload should probably contain stuff of Iranian and Ukrainian origin…

        1. Polar Socialist

          That’s actually eerily accurate video of the whole weather balloon episode, come to think of it.

    2. Wukchumni

      Michael Lander is a pilot who flies the Goodyear Blimp over National Football League games to film them for network television. Secretly deranged by years of torture as a POW in the Vietnam War, he had a bitter court martial on his return and a failed marriage. He longs to kill himself and to take with him as many as possible of the cheerful, carefree civilians he sees from his blimp each weekend.

      1. KLG

        Bruce Dern, Marthe Keller, Robert Shaw, Fritz Weaver in a John Frankenheimer movie! What has happened to Hollywood in one short list.

      2. griffen

        Please don’t be supplying any ideas or thoughts in the minds of our enemies! First it is balloons.

        I suppose if there is a fictional update in the works, it might be suggestible using an Iraq or Afghanistan group of veterans in the fictional plot. Not to pick on veterans but in our current administration, for example, they have it apparently mapped how to identify and brand domestic terrorism or domestic extremists. And since this fictional attack occurs with a fictional Super Bowl, why not include say the Lions vs Browns in the fiction ? Or more locally to myself, the Panthers who are far, far from contending.

        1. Wukchumni

          There is apparently gonna be a shit ton of military aircraft up in the air in Arizona, as this is our May Day celebration of sorts which looms larger as the war hawks have to really push the envelope opening ‘ceremonies’.

          Congestion is and always will be an issue with so many aircraft in one place, stay tuned.

      3. ambrit

        I’ll testify that a lot of us from the Miami/Dade area cheered him on. (Almost no locals could afford the ticket prices. Thus, most of the “victims” would have been out of town high rollers. In other words, Fair Game.)

    3. antidlc

      “Our super day of American commercialism, food gluttony and beverage consumption must not be impeded!”

      No thank you. I refuse to watch what I consider legalized assault.

      1. Stephen V

        In the alternative we watched Le Carré’s NIGHT MANAGER last night. It has it all going on: beautiful settings, great acting, and international arms deals gone awry. And even a never before seen fireworks demo of the fanciest munitions we have for the local (Syrian) buyer. And topped off with an honorable mention for the rogue CIA agent.

        1. ambrit

          A more appropriate film to match the zeitgeist would be “The Night Porter” with Dirk Bogarde and Charlotte Rampling.
          Since he is an actor of sorts, (allsorts is my best guess,) a reboot is in order starring Mr. and Mrs. Zelenskyy. Set it in Miami. The Florida governor will eagerly kick in all sorts of tax breaks and filming ‘assistance.’ (Now that they have this new revenue stream from the ex-Mouse Kingdom.)

        2. Stephen

          I am sure it is good. If you are referring to the TV serial then I struggle to watch Hugh Laurie in serious roles. Always think of him as Rowan Atkinson’s side kick in Blackadder. Even well over thirty years on.

    4. Mikel

      The Super Bowl is an advertising/marketing event with a football game and other entertainment thrown into the mix.
      It’s almost like another type of advertiser upfront for the year.

  10. The Rev Kev

    “Do Chatbots Get Us Any Closer To Human-Level Artificial Intelligence?”

    Nope. Not even close. You can train some birds to “talk” to you in response to a question. Does that make them sapient? Nope. Unless a Chatbot come up with original thoughts, I am not buying it as Artificial Intelligence. Wanna know something? You have a lot of people getting enthusiastic about Chatbots. The same way how you had a lot of people being enthusisatic a decade ago about cryptocurrency. I wonder what the next fad will be a decade from now. Meanwhile, in line with what I said at the the start of the comment, here is something that is not a waste of your time (unlike Chatbots)- (4:29 mins)

    1. Cassandra

      I am also unimpressed by chatbots, but would argue that grey parrots and border collies are most definitely sapient, probably more so than some members of Congress…

    2. skk

      I asked chat-gpt for a negative response to the question “Do Chatbots Get Us Any Closer To Human-Level Artificial Intelligence?”. Its response:

      Chatbots do not bring us any closer to human-level artificial intelligence. While chatbots are useful for basic conversational tasks and can respond to specific pre-programmed queries, they lack the ability to understand context and exhibit true human-like thinking and reasoning. Achieving human-level AI would require advanced machine learning algorithms that can comprehend, analyze and interpret data in much more sophisticated ways than current chatbots are capable of. Additionally, human-level AI would also need to possess emotional intelligence, self-awareness and consciousness – traits that chatbots currently do not possess.

      Then I asked it for arguments by analogy and with ad hominems. It said:

      As an AI language model, I do not recommend using argument by analogy or ad hominem attacks as they are not productive or respectful ways of communicating and can be perceived as unprofessional. It’s best to stick to a well-reasoned argument based on evidence and sound reasoning.

      How mature ! Unlike me of course for running such a childish experiment.

    3. Louis Fyne

      100% correct. BUT chatGPT-like programming is good enough to make lots of people unemployed.

      My credit card co. moved to a ChatGPT-like system, no human interaction needed to get a new credit card over the phone.

      India-based call centers will be largely extinct in 10 years.

      1. skk

        Indeed. On my FB I gave a list of occupations that are in the glib, plausible, narrative domain that are going to have some real competition in the future. These were:

        financial analysts, economists, political analysts, art critics, wine connoisseurs, romancing romeos and juliets, philosophers, law, aspects of medicine, marketing, advertising. gender studies, spiritual gurus.

        Its only a partial list. I should add journalists.

        1. skippy

          Ha … I stated earlier in the week on another sight that chatGPT would replace mainstream orthodox economists, would be just desserts that a bunch of code slapped together, just like their econometrics, would be their demise … I’m just waiting for them to call it ***Science*** again due to the computational aspect … w/ a side of logic – rational … thingy …

        2. albrt

          As a lawyer, I am confident that a lot of bad lawyers can be replaced by Chat GPT and no one would know the difference. But I am also confident that I can beat Chat GPT in a head to head contest where Chat GPT’s client is not a friend of the judge.

      2. wendigo

        I guess the scammer calls from microsoft security will be next.

        Too bad, I had an interesting conversation on one call after I convinced the caller to tell me what he was wearing since microsoft security personnel would obviously be wearing a uniform.

        Unfortunately we got cut off as he began his description.

    4. Mikel

      And communicating with others is about more than than talking or written responses.
      But people who have a problem with empathy and/or an undervelopment of emotional capacity think a lot of “robotic” things are human enough or close to human.
      It’s an issue that needs to be talked about more.

      1. JTMcPhee

        Bring on the Butlerian Jihad, already.

        Or maybe a super Carrington Event, though the collateral damage is to be deplored. It would be “worth it.” /s

      2. c_heale

        I wonder whether ChatGPT has falsified the Turing Test.

        If this is the case, then machines can’t think, and AI is in a lot of trouble on the theoretical level as well.

        It’s about time this happened, because it seems to me that the analogy of the human brain being like a computer is way too simplistic.

    5. Kouros

      Have a look at Sturat Russell and Peter Norvig’s Artificial Intelligence – A Modern Approach and it will definitely convince you that there is nothing intelligent there in the Chatbots.

    6. Realist

      It was very interesting how mischief makers “hypontised” ChatGPT to play the character of D.A.N. (Do anything now).

      There is something very advanced going on for it to be able to parse and act on that concept from their natural language prompts.

    1. Nikkikat

      When I read the story US shoots down high altitude, car sized object over Alaska. All I could think of is: maybe it’s the flying car from Harry Potter. Those Weasley twins are always causing trouble!

      1. Young

        Biden just canceled the Christmas next year. No more Santa.

        The object was an Uber carrying Santa back home, since his Chinese-made sleigh broke down in LA.

    2. Wukchumni

      …how do we know it wasn’t some latter-day Phileas Fogg en route to winning a wager when we shot it down not all that far away from where KAL 007* was gunned down?

      * Fortune favored the brave who were on the very same flight the next day, LAX to Anchorage to Seoul, and if it hadn’t there would’ve been about 20 numismatists among the missing, as a bunch of us were going to a coin show in Hong Kong and hung out in Seoul for a bit.

      Needless the say en route everybody’s nerves were on edge knowing what went down, and i’ve never seen a flight with so many help yourself liquor carts, not that i’ve ever seen one before or since in economy class.

      1. ambrit

        That would be Truly Scrumptious. Like taking Potts Shots at Bombastic Bombursting Balloons.
        We aren’t talking Zeppelins here.
        For the original “balloon shoot” from “Hell’s Angels.” (Over twenty minutes long, but worth watching.) Hughes used a real war surplus Zeppelin for all the scenes, including the ‘explosive’ finale:
        Some apposite commentary:

      1. Screwball

        Thanks for the link.
        Let’s call this balloon 2, and lets call the one they shot down in the Atlantic balloon 1.

        Did anyone see the pictures of the Navy vessel and crew capturing balloon 1 and putting it in a boat? I’m no expert by any means, but if a balloon the size of that one, where people could see it at 60,000 ft with the naked eye – would be a lot of fabric. Then it goes in the ocean and gets wet. Now it is very large, and very heavy.

        To my untrained eye, that doesn’t look like a big enough boat. And wouldn’t there also be those solar panels and equipment (the size of school buses IIRC) attached to said balloon? I don’t think we’ve heard any updates, but I could be wrong. I don’t expect we ever will because these people are liars.

        I’m not sure I’m buying this (balloon) one either.

  11. The Rev Kev

    “Estonia’s Robin Hood plan: Take from Russia to give to Ukraine”

    No. it is actually just theft. The US did it the other day and other EU countries are trying to twist their laws into a pretzel in order to grab Russia’s money. And when this is done, it will be sent to the most corrupt country in Europe – after taking their cut – and god knows what will happen to it there. But there is more to it than that. Think about it. If you were a Chinese guy or somebody from Saudi Arabia who had a few million parked in the US or the EU, what would you think? Would you trust your money there or would you be afraid that it might be stolen from you. So start to watch as more and more money is withdrawn from the US/EU for safer countries to invest in that still have sanctity of property laws. Ironically, one of these is Russia. Gonzalo Lira did a video on this a couple days and he explains it much better- (18:27 mins)

    I know that the collective west are going to to it anyway but I now know how Willy Wonker felt- (36 secs)

    1. Louis Fyne

      Aĺlegedly the EU has only locates roughly 50b USD of Russian central bank assets.

      Don’t know the level of truth to this….as I can’t find info on actual assets frozen.

      1. Polar Socialist

        I understand EU banks have so far reported $36B of Russian Central Bank assets frozen. Nobody seems to really know how much there is and where it is.

        Russian National Wealth Fund is dumping all Euro assets this year, said the deputy finance minister Kolychev a few days ago.

        1. JTMcPhee

          I wonder how many banksters have already sliced off millions here and there for their own personal self-help “bonuses.” It’s not like so many of them have resisted the siren calls of moral hazards in the run up to today.

          I was in HQ Company of the First Air Cavalry at Ft. Hood in 1969. The Army hired some consultancy to institute a new computerized supply, personnel and payroll system. Back in the day of big mainframes and tape drives and punch cards. The guy set things up, got access to the Treasury, transferred a couple of million bucks to some offshore account, real money back then, then erased the tape, destroyed the punch cards and other evidence. So the Army/feds ended up paying him to explain how he did it, and close the back door.

          I’m sure the process is a lot more sophisticated these days. But equally consequence-free.

    2. c_heale

      It won’t be sent to the most corrupt country in Europe (I’m assuming that means Ukraine).

      It will be filling the pockets of the corrupt politicians in the EU and NATO. Ukraine is being robbed of everything it had (some by it’s own politicians), but mainly by the rest of the Europe and the USA.

      This is why Biden, Van Leyen, etc. are involved. It’s just a scam with some neo-con politics thrown in. Just like Iraq, etc.

  12. Ignacio

    RE: Corruption endangers world’s shrinking fisheries AP
    Though this is a generally good article, it seems some Western Superiority Complex cannot be avoided when talking about corrupt civil servants and governors in countries like Indonesia. The article cites Ben Freitas from WWF in Washington saying: “Countries with weak governments that lack oversight and accountability are more susceptible to corruption risk. And that is where fisheries corruption plays a pernicious role in overfishing. It can lead to the over-exploitation of resources. It is a global problem.

    Weak governments or people from richer countries able to pay several times their salaries for a few lobsters? Does Freitas mean that it is comparatively low salaries what make those governments “weak”? I would have rather chosen vulnerable instead of weak. As if Western governments were incorruptible. Nobody believes this any more. These are masters on how to avoid the accounting rules and oversight.

    1. GramSci

      Overfishing is just one more reason why the USA must replace weak governments like Sukarno’s with strong, incorruptible governments like Suharto’s.

  13. Wukchumni

    History has such strange bedfellows, and how the Disney Company used Mineral King as a fulcrum against Florida in 1967, only a month or so after Walt was buried.

    You see Walt Disney was a skier and winter sports enthusiast, and the Disney Company had pulled off the 1960 Squaw Valley (forbidden now-the name) Olympic opening and closing ceremonies which went off fabulously.

    The Disney Company gets awarded the contract to build a ski resort in Mineral King in 1965, and one description of the possibilities there called it ‘6 Sun Valleys in 1 Resort’ it would’ve been amazing, and i’ve had the good fortune to ski there many times and you can see how good it would’ve been-but never will, unless you earn your own turns by skinning up and DIY.

    But the way I see it, is there are skiers and everybody else that doesn’t-who assume you break your leg or run into a tree about every other time when out assuming the position of hurtling down steep embankments repeatedly on purpose.

    Without Walt in the picture why bother with a project where the road built in 1879 with 698 significant turns in 25 miles is barely adequate for summer traffic and forget about it being a winter road, versus flat as a pancake Florida and yeah Swamplando needed a lot of work, but everything pointed to that being the plan, post Walt.

    So, they did the squeeze job on Florida @ Reedy Creek by using Mineral King as an implied threat, and here we are 56 years later.
    Gov. Ron DeSantis of Florida gained control on Friday of the board that oversees development at Walt Disney World, a move that restricts the autonomy of Disney, the state’s largest private employer, over its theme-park complex and strips some perks enjoyed by the company for 56 years.

    The changes are the result of a bill that the Florida Legislature approved at the urging of Mr. DeSantis, who fought with Disney last year over an education law that limits the discussion of sexual orientation and gender identity in schools. The State House passed the bill on Thursday, and the State Senate followed suit on Friday. Mr. DeSantis claimed victory earlier in the week: “There’s a new sheriff in town.”

    “For more than 50 years, the Reedy Creek Improvement District has operated at the highest standards,” Jeff Vahle, Disney World’s president, said in a statement, noting that the resort has been able to grow into “one of the largest economic contributors” in Florida because of the district. “We are focused on the future and are ready to work within this new framework.”

    “More to the point, we — as a Company — know nothing when it comes to building cities. That’s why we need to sell off all of that property in Central Florida. That Experimental Prototype Community of Tomorrow idea of Walt’s is an absolute recipe for disaster now that he’s gone. This is why we need to forget about Florida and concentrate all of our efforts in California.

    Stick with the original Disneyland & our Studio in Burbank. And then build that ski area up in Mineral King.”

    1. Carolinian

      I’m not sure what you are saying here. Obviously Disney World isn’t going anywhere. Meanwhile lots of environmentalists like Ansel Adams fought against the Mineral King resort and won. Indeed before the Monkey Wrenchers got themselves declared terrorists by the lumber companies and others there was a pro wilderness faction that objected to all Western ski resorts. Didn’t they blow up some buildings at Vail?

      Needless to say that spasm of militancy is very much in the wane. But having visited Disney’s cash machine in Florida I personally wouldn’t see it as a great loss. Millions, however, disagree.

      1. Wukchumni

        It was a series of events why Disney gave up on Mineral King, Walt dying being the beginning of the end, followed by the Disney Company having the incredibly bad timing of having 5 experienced winter mountaineers winter over where the ski resort would be, in the winter of record in 1968-69.

        One of them died, and the other 4 barely escaped when 14 avalanches came down at various times right into where the resort facilities would be. The idea that there have only been a handful of avalanches in Mineral King Valley since in the past 54 years is all in the rear view mirror, but what if you’re Disney in 1969 and know that your planned ski resort has major issues of avalanches?

        …add a dash of pissed off private cabin owners in Mineral King who are at risk of being eminent domain’d, to flavor…

        Only after that debacle does the Sierra Club get involved, and ironically the very same Sierra Club who was for ski resort earlier.

        There is a 1927 Ansel Adams photo of Mineral King, of a latch & chain of a cabin door…

        1. Carolinian

          Well good luck on your problem. Roads are an interesting issue since some of them serve only a small slice of the public. My brother has a named road that nevertheless runs as an easement along the side of his property and is now faced with possibility having to pay to have that bit repaved even though he doesn’t drive on it. Disney World itself is a kind public/private partnership although they seem to have seen it as more private/public.

          1. ambrit

            The Mouse Kingdom has or had irrevocable permits for their own, “in house” nuclear power stations (plural.) The original deal that Roy Disney imposed on the Florida Legislature created the closest thing America has yet had to an independent fiefdom. Think a landlocked Jersey Islands.
            I would like to see just what parts of the original deal were revoked.
            This is an ‘own goal’ by the Disney Mob. They tried to impose their version of ‘Woke’ upon a sovereign State, and lost. If they had just left well enough alone.

        1. ambrit

          Jinkies! Looking for a ponce in Orlando? May we suggest you try the back entrance to the Magic Kingdom? Recently, however, that back entrance has been moved to somewhere in Tallahassee. Ask for Rude Ron at the airport. They’ll know what you mean. Be prepared to spend large though. Hunter has set a high bar, the louche lad he.

            1. ambrit

              Hmmm…. I never thought that the “Orange Haired Devil” could be considered as a Post Impressionist. Silly me.

    2. JP

      Mineral King wasn’t the only Disney ski encroachment attempt in the Sierra. They also built the incredible road up the east side into Horseshoe meadows. If you are going to do Whitney from the eastside I much recommend Cottonwood pass trail out of horseshoe and from there up the ridge instead of the slog from Whitney Portal.

      But speaking of roads, nothing takes your breath away like meeting a trash truck on a blind curve on the Mineral King road.

    3. skippy

      The surrounding areas of both Uncle Walt properties are low socioeconomic – and stay that way – because they like it that way …

      In Orlando you don’t leave the hotel entry unless getting into a cab after dark outside the Walt compound.

      Beware the yellow/orange eyed people at night …. oh and the other attraction of note is the halfway house next to the cop shop … what a show – !!!!!!

  14. Richard H Caldwell n

    “ UnitedHealthcare incentivizes healthy patient behavior – Axios”. What on earth is wrong with “incents”? Whither English?

    1. cfraenkel

      “Incents” is way to active. It implies a responsible actor, and something being acted upon.
      “Incentives” on the other hand, are just strewn about on the ground – if you want the incentive, you’re free to do the required necessary. No one to blame, it’s all on you.

    2. ambrit

      Just as the mix of Spanish and English often heard along America’s southern border is known as ‘Spanglish,’ the emerging dialect of Woke and English is now known as ‘Wanglish.’ (What would the opposite term from “acronym” be?)

      1. hunkerdown

        Those are portmanteaux, and boy do they tote around a lot of baggage. I don’t know about the third question.

        1. Martin Oline

          port·man·teau /pôrtˈmantō/
          1. a large trunk or suitcase, typically made of stiff leather and opening into two equal parts.
          2. a word blending the sounds and combining the meanings of two others, for example motel (from ‘motor’ and ‘hotel’) or brunch (from ‘breakfast’ and ‘lunch’).
          So when Yogi sez “The towels were so thick there I could hardly close my suitcase.” it’s a number one?

        1. ambrit

          Adds an extra dimension of Politically Incorrect to the, er, equation.
          I fear that Wankish will already be taken. Said calumny is of long standing.
          I do get that “Local Wokel” could be used to denote the smaller scale Agents of State Security that enforce the various diktats.
          I’ll wager that regional versions of the term will, er, ‘arise.’

    3. Jen

      Same thing that’s wrong with “use,” instead of “utilize.” Doesn’t sound fancy enough for the MBA types.

  15. Adam

    Re: a black professor trapped in anti-racist hell. A few thoughts:

    1 – Does the individual identified as ‘Keisha’ know what she was doing or is she a true believer? In either case her behavior is shocking and I say this from a left, not liberal, perspective and only empowers the far right.

    2 – The billionaires and their courtiers are laughing their heads off.

    One final thought. I noticed the professor didn’t call her out at all. My guess is that he was frightened as to what she could do to him career wise if he did. Even more shocking if true.

      1. hunkerdown is a possible US counterintelligence honeypot. Please provide the original link as well.

          1. hunkerdown

            Many years ago, while archiving a page, one of the sites failed to complete the process, displaying a broken spinner animation whose URL belonged to a counterintelligence school on the West Coast. I know it wasn’t part of the page I was archiving, because the address bar never changed to the new page URL.

          1. hunkerdown

            That’s my problem. Which I don’t have, because I’ve disabled first-party cookies for that site in my browser using one of the many available add-ons. And which, if I did have, I could solve for myself using measures preferably other than

            I have a much bigger problem with dissident communities being recklessly opted in to surveillance or exploitation hazards.

            Direct link:

    1. barefoot charley

      That was one depressing read. Sad sad sad that this canceling of education and conversation is made to serve kids already somewhat estranged from wider society. By edumacational racketeers who institutionalize estrangement, and as Keisha’s notes make clear, offer no hope for improvement. And of course you can’t attempt to reason with it, because that’s honky-talk. (Why can I still say that?) Just awful.

    2. Rod

      I agree with Barefoot Charley, really depressing–in total. Sponsor/Current Mission/Staff/etc.
      I liked that the participants had to co-habitat and, as implied, co-operate for the duration of the Seminar.
      Maybe he and his Co Presenter (his wife) just got out-woked and then bullied by a chosen one (not by him). I detected, from his implications, that he has woken his fair share also. Maybe Keisha was creating an employment opportunity for herself/their self. I would think that a Black Womans Trauma is worth more consideration than a Black Mans Trauma on somebody’s scale?
      And I recognize it’s just his side of the story also.
      I thought Interventions were something you did for your strung out or cult imbedded family members–not to what you do regularly to Students in your pre-collegiate Seminar.
      But I only spent 28 years, teaching like I was both Awake and Aware, in Public Education. Before all this became the thing first. So wtf do I know?

  16. KD

    Philosophical puzzle for the day:

    If you commit a war crime, and the Western media doesn’t cover it, does it exist?

    1. ChrisFromGA

      Oh heck, I will bite. Having no formal training in philosophy, apologies in advance.

      The concept of a “crime” is just a mental construct. It does not “exist” in the sense that the atoms that make up the keyboard I am typing from do. “War crime” is even more tenuous … in the sense that there has never been a single case in history that I am aware of, where a winning nation in a war allowed war crimes prosecutions of its own citizens/soldiers.

      A “crime” is typically determined by and punished through the judicial system, which does exist although the concepts of justice, law, and criminal defense are non-existent, being merely mental models that have gained acceptance in some societies.

      So war crimes do not exist at all, regardless of whether the media covers them or not.

      The dead animals and humans that are the byproduct of that which we call war crimes certainly did exist.

    2. tevhatch

      If you commit multiple war crimes, but can help advance the science of weapons of mass destruction for a “democracy”, do they exist? (Operation Paperclip)

          1. hunkerdown

            I think ambrit is wryly observing that every noun in your sentence is a candidate antecedent for “they”, and that the existence of all of those candidates could be validly questioned.

            1. tevhatch

              If you commit multiple war crimes, but can help advance the science of weapons of mass destruction for a “democracy”, do you exist? (Operation Paperclip)

              Thank you, it really does work better.

            2. ambrit

              Right. I’m not casting aspersions at ‘tevhatch’s’ grasp of English. His, or her English language skills are much better than my Spanish skills for instance. My comment was also a reference to Lambert’s frequent comment about “heavy lifting.” Wry is the exact right word to describe my thinking.

  17. Mikel

    “Millions of Californians applied for Biden student loan relief. What is the holdup?” McClatchy

    Then, on cue, a few links down:

    “The road to the White House runs through South Carolina” Politico

  18. Lexx

    ‘Corruption endangers world’s shrinking fisheries’

    ‘He was arrested in 2020 by Indonesian authorities, having used the graft to purchase 26 road bikes, Old Navy children’s clothes, Louis Vuitton bags, Rolex watches and two luxury pens. Prabowo, 50, was sentenced to five years in prison for corruption. His attorney declined to comment.’

    That’s it? That was his heart’s desire? That’s what made him a big man, a person to envy within his Tribe, in possession of those status symbols? That’s what added extra swagger to his hatchety buttocks as he lorded about?

    See I read sentences like and remember that he is a member of my species, no better and no worse, and I kinda wish the Death Star existed and was training its sites on our planet even now. Sorry, but we all gotta go. Otherwise we have to live with the knowledge that our planet is being sold out from under us to crappy fast fashion companies like Old Navy, and I don’t want to.

    The more I know, the better death looks.

    1. tevhatch

      Like the (Salt) Gabelle and similar resource tax/toll official seats, the tax collector had to pass on the majority of his squeeze. I suspect the bike gifts were for local fishing guild heads, where as the luxury items were for up stream. 5 years, probably with some allowances for special jail conditions, were the return favor for not naming names. This is very mild, compared to the USA sponsored “Jakarta Method” of graft extraction, where entire eco-systems were mined out of existence and tribes extirpated in the name of anti-communism.

    2. agent ranger smith

      Be one of the people who never ever buys any crappy fast fashion, and you can feel better about yourself right there.

      The Aymara Alpaca herders around Lake Titicaca have nothing to do with the ills you discuss, so why would you wish for their death by Death Star?

      1. Lexx

        Because that’s the way a Death Star works; it’s not a surgical device. I’d settle for being bumped off by Vogons, but that’s just trading one set of corrupt bureaucrats for another, and the poetry’s worse.

        It’s an expression of my despair for my species, ARS… but Flora isn’t wrong.

  19. Jessica

    “US Marines to join Japanese guarding remote islands” Asia Times
    I have relatives who live on Ryukyu islands south of the main Okinawan island. They were outraged by Japan stationing troops there and turning them into a target.
    Adding Marines into the mix will increase the outrage and increase the danger to those civilian populations.
    A significant portion of the Okinawan civilian population was killed in the Battle of Okinawa, both by US and Japanese troops. (Okinawans were considered inferior to mainland Japanese.) Many Okinawans see themselves as having paid the price, both in 1945 and in the years since, for Tokyo’s war.
    No one in their right mind would want to be turned into the Donbas of east Asia. Even less so, a people whose grandparents already went through such a hell.

    For the Asia Times, the article was unusually pro-US military. Which made sense given that the article was written by a former US Marine. The complete absence in the article of any concern for the impact on the Ryukyuan people is an accurate reflection of attitudes in both Washington and Tokyo.

  20. Randy

    From Moon of Alabama:

    “So it looks like the airforce sent up an AWACS surveillance plane, a tanker and an F-22, the most expensive fighter plane ever, to fire a $400,000 Sidewinder missile to take down a failed weather balloon.”

    MOA and others are thinking this object was a US weather balloon.

    I would include a link but my post would enter moderation hell never to be seen again. Also NC readers know how to find MOA.

  21. Alice X

    The Andrew Korybko piece on Lula is overboard. Lula said the SMO is illegal, which many believe it was, but is not for bolstering Ukraine’s war machinery. Something Korybko seems to overlook. Still waiting for one or another earlier comments gone missing that would demonstrate this.

  22. Cetra Ess

    re: Black professor trapped in anti-racist hell

    As I was reading this it all seemed so familiar. Then I remembered Leninthink by Gary Saul Morson, went and re-read it, the parallels are seriously remarkable.

    I think what Vincent Lloyd is describing is a form of Lenin’s “partiinost” in action. This is where due process and even understanding is rejected, no need to examine facts, viewpoints, findings, intepretations, precedents – the party is right, always, and whatever stands in the way of the party, as completely arbitrarily decided and ordained by the leadership, is unquestionably wrong, despite anything at all.

    This was Lenin’s unique contribution to communism and formed the basis of later Stalinism, the notion of ideological purity being where truth or falsity, rightness or wrongness does not enter the picture at all, is beside the point, and you should be willing to sacrifice yourself to the party, made an example of. Thus the fondness for purges.

    Keisha is essentially a young Stalin tracing the same ideological path toward authoritarianism, or she’s Tracy Flick in ‘Election’. I think there are quite a few like her toxifiying schools and politics across the political spectrum. Didn’t Nietzsche say something about how every movement is subverted by its zealots? He meant this kind of thing.

    He also warned to distrust all in whom the instinct to punish is powerful. I think that describes Keisha.

    Also, that moment when Keisha coerces Lloyd, against his will, to give a lecture, could be a lesson in non-consensual relations.

    1. vao

      The fact that the entire vilification process was organized by young people against an older person of authority is actually much more reminiscent of what was taking placed during the “cultural revolution” in China.

      1. digi_owl

        Now cross this with our earlier discussion of former maoists in green parties, and things start to get “interesting”.

    2. agent ranger smith

      Who trained this “Keisha”? Who mentored her and injected her into this program in order to destroy it from within?

      That miserable Faust! Who was her Mephistopheles? Both institutionally and personally speaking?

  23. Glen

    Third world $hithole country report:

    ‘It’s just crazy’: Republicans attack US child labor laws as violations rise

    Can’t get enough workers at slave wages and horrible job conditions? Hire kids.

    Every top manager at these sites found hiring kids illegally needs to be brought up on charges and tried for breaking the law. If found guilty, put in jail, for a LONG time.

    I will never do any business with any company found hiring kids illegally.

    1. agent ranger smith

      That’s why they want to make Child Labor legal again. So that every company will use Child Labor and you will not be able to pick out any single company to boycott.

      The war will have to be fought at the level of keeping Child Labor illegal. If it becomes legalized in some states and remains illegal in other states, then those other states would have to figure out how to boycott those “some” states in order to torture and bankrupt them into such utter poverty and loss of population to where they were forced to make Child Labor illegal again.

      Otherwise, Child Labor will eventually be made legal in all 50 states, one by one, and then the last few bunches.

  24. Jason Boxman

    So for what it’s worth, if you read the Three Body Problem series (fiction), the author presents a fascinating case as to why you wouldn’t find alien intelligence reaching out into the universe contacting another alien civilization.

  25. Jason Boxman

    A Times headline writer does a funny: Oh, No. Time to Worry About Norovirus Again.

    Cases of norovirus — a common, contagious virus that can induce vomiting and diarrhea — are generally rising across the United States, according to new data from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention. Norovirus is spreading elsewhere, too; in England, cases are reportedly 66 percent higher than the average around this time of year, with the largest increase among people ages 65 and older.

    Nope, no immune dis-regulation from COVID here; Nothing to see, move along!

    Yikes. How can I avoid getting norovirus?

    The most important thing you can do is wash your hands frequently with warm water and soap, Dr. Sabella said.

    Of course the Times cites the CDC in regards to transmission, so of course it can’t be airborne, but that possibility was explored and validated back in 2015:

    Noroviruses may spread through the air

    For the study, Duchaine and her team gathered air samples at a distance of 1 meter from patients, at the doors to their rooms, and at nursing stations at each healthcare facility. Noroviruses were found in the air at six of the eight facilities studied. Researchers detected the viruses in 54 percent of the patient rooms, 38 percent of the hallways leading to their rooms, and 50 percent of nursing stations. Virus concentrations ranged from 13 to 2350 particles per cubic meter of air, which is significant, researchers said, because a dose of 20 norovirus particles is usually enough for someone to get sick with gastroenteritis.

    America is a shared suicide pact. No amount of washing your hands gonna fix that. Truly the stupidest timeline. Our public health officials are functionally stupid.

    1. agent ranger smith

      Its only shared by those who share it. The rest of us are unwilling hostages. There is nothing wrong with protecting yourself as best you can against the diseases spread by the Willing Typhoid Maries and their Willing Suicide Pact supporters.

  26. Jason Boxman

    I mostly avoid the woke stuff, because it hurts my head, but you’ve got to read: A Black Professor Trapped in Anti-Racist Hell

    This stuff is nuts:

    During our discussion of incarceration, an Asian-American student cited federal inmate demographics: About 60 percent of those incarcerated are white. The black students said they were harmed. They had learned, in one of their workshops, that objective facts are a tool of white supremacy. Outside of the seminar, I was told, the black students had to devote a great deal of time to making right the harm that was inflicted on them by hearing prison statistics that were not about blacks.

    It gets worse, even.

    Similarly, after a week focused on the horrific violence, death, and dispossession inflicted on Native Americans, Keisha reported to me that the black students and their allies were harmed because we hadn’t focused sufficiently on anti-blackness. When I tried to explain that we had four weeks focused on anti-blackness coming soon, as indicated on the syllabus, she said the harm was urgent; it needed to be addressed immediately.

    Perhaps DeSantis is on to a political winner in going after wokeness.

    1. agent ranger smith

      Again, I wonder . . . who was this “Keisha” . . . really? Was she a Junior Maoist crusader? Was she a “cutout” secretely inserted into that program in order to destroy it from within? Is she just one of many being hatched and sent out from secret Wokeness Gangrene Fermentation Tanks?

    1. NotTimothyGeithner

      Is anyone but the severely coke addled impressed?

      The balloon nonsense is running for dumbest story I’ve ever heard.

  27. JBird4049

    On the Cop City video, this does add some weight to the throw gun idea.

    I am wondering if this was a accidentally-but-really-on-purpose-shooting instead of the normal(?) panicking fearing for one’s life shooting. What is the difference, you ask? I can sorta, kinda accept panic, because the police are susceptible to fear and panic like anyone else. It’s called being human. It might even be forgivable, but to engineer a murder and the obviously, extremely quick coverup that might still succeed even with the footage is not.

    Then having this followed up with the recent brutal clearing of the protestors and the start of the building process in an essential black run city that is one of the most surveilled in the country is infuriating. Let’s forget about black and white because what really matters is the Green.

    1. Lex

      Theoretically police are screened for how they react in tense situations and under pressure because not everyone is equally susceptible to fear and panic. And then they’re theoretically trained to a high degree, presumably to cope with fear and panic given the potentials of their job. Police who show themselves susceptible to fear and panic would presumably be removed from active duty in the same way someone in the military who shows fear and panic would likely not become an officer. No reason they can’t still be police, but if the screening and training don’t work, the police officer likely to react out of fear or panic should be behind a desk.

      We’re told they are willing to make great sacrifices in their dangerous job to keep us safe. I don’t want anyone who’s likely to react from fear or susceptible to panicked behavior in charge of keeping me safe. I don’t want them wandering around with guns and the authority to use them, especially if fear is a legal justification for their use.

  28. will rodgers horse

    United wants only to track your steps and a few minor other details to be announced over time…where you shop, what you eat, who you socialize with, who you sleep with, you know just minor details…and what a deal!

  29. Jason Boxman

    This guy should f**king resign. This doesn’t even make sense.

    Acting Health Commissioner Dr. James V. McDonald said the department’s decision to not request a renewal of the emergency regulation reflects a “period of transition” in the pandemic, thanks to decreasing levels of Covid-19 infections and hospitalizations.

    “It allows us to shift from blanket mandates to an approach in which we provide people with the information and tools they need to protect themselves,” McDonald said Thursday during a state Public Health and Health Planning Council meeting. “We’ve given health care facilities and the general public the information they need to protect themselves.”

    A public health “official” that believes public health involves individual level risk assessment and mitigation. What even the f**k is that?

      1. agent ranger smith

        If the goal is to spread disease, then the anti-public anti-health personell who have taken over the leadership of the public health entities are doing what is needed to further that goal.

        If we want the public health entities to protect public health, we will have to conquer them and purge out all the anti-public anti-health people who currently work in them and direct them.

        ” Yes. But how”?

        Good Question.

  30. nothing but the truth

    “Why is democratic India helping Russia avoid Western sanctions?”

    because India would rather burn in global warming hell than let the Anglos resuscitate the colonial nightmare again.

    Estimated 100 million Indian died unnatural deaths due to famines engineered by the British good governance.

    1. JBird4049

      California has had a history of steadily improving earthquake safety especially after any major earthquake damage. I am sure it is embarrassing to the state government and horrible to the surviving relatives and friends, but it has been a good thing to see. After the mess that was the building of the replacement Bay Bridge and the growing mess that is the Millennium Tower as well as the increasing corruption at all levels, I wonder just how true it is now. We will not know until the next big earthquake, which will happen between now and the next century.

      Of course, the greater the delay, the worse the possible death toll, which is why I am almost wishing for a quake to happen sooner than later. That is strange, but fuck, I have seen what can happen with even a moderately strong quake and even a few honest mistakes in design. Plus all the close calls particularly down in Southern California. There will be another earthquake like the 1906 one.

      Just how well built are all those newish skyscrapers built over the past few decades? Or the always troublesome San Rafael-Richmond Bridge, the rebuilt approaches to several major bridges especially the Golden Gate, or the latest construction throughout the Bay Area, or in Los Angeles? And how can I forget San Jose? And since California is becoming more like Turkey, México, or South America…

      It is strange to worry about this, but until Covid, I wasn’t worried about the CDC either. It looked fine until its earthquake.

      So, I guess I will pay my taxes and take my chances. What else can I do?

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