Links 3/21/2023

18 Inappropriate Logos Buzzfeed (Chuck L)

Fan poops in aisle near Hillary and Chelsea Clinton at Broadway show Page Six (BC)

‘Picasso the Foreigner’ Review: An Outsider in Paris Wall Street Journal. Anthony L: “Worth it for the picture.”

‘That scares me’: New childhood obesity guidelines still face a long road to consensus STAT

US maternal mortality is more than ten times higher than in Australia. Why? Guardian (Dr. Kevin)

US inches up to 15th on list of happiest countries Changing America (Kevin W). Read the criteria. Designed to favor US and European countries. In other studies, Nigeria came out as happiest.

Stuck with the soul aeon


SARS-CoV-2 Infection Weakens Immune-Cell Response to Vaccination NIH (ma). Study here.


Humanity On Thin Ice, Says Latest UN Climate Report OilPrice (resilc)

UN delegates reach historic agreement on protecting marine biodiversity in international waters United Nations

Paper plates and short showers: life with no water in Arizona France24 (resilc)

Triple threat: How disease, climate risks, and unsafe water, sanitation and hygiene create a deadly combination for children UNICEF (guurst)

Scientists Sound Alarm on Fracking Near Muskingum, Ohio Watershed Clevescene (Carla R)


How Chinese Companies Are Reinventing Management Harvard Business Review (Anthony L)

China’s Naval Problem Andrei Martyanov (Chuck L)

Vessels claiming to be Chinese warships are messing with passenger planes The Register

New Not-So-Cold War

China’s Xi calls for ‘rational way’ out of Ukraine conflict AlJazeera

Why China’s peace plan for Ukraine will fail Edward Luttwak, Unherd. Wowsers. Completely misses the point that the intent was for it to go nowhere and make the US and NATO look like the warmongers they are. All China had to do was issue what amounted to a napkin-doodle press release with the words “peace” and “ceasefire” (you didn’t even need to get to “abandoning the Cold War mentality” and “stopping unilateral sanctions”). No way, no how is the US going to let China play broker or negotiate with Russia through any intermediary.

* * *

* * *

Ukraine says Russia Kalibr missile cargo hit in transit to Crimea Aljazeera. If true, this was US targeting, which raises the question of how Russia responds. The hardliners are chomping at the bit for escalation.

* * *

Russia defies Putin arrest warrant by opening its own case against ICC Reuters

The US’ Resumed Deportation Of Mobilization-Fleeing Russian Men Discredits Its Soft Power Andrew Korybko (Chuck L)

Russia bans SWIFT RT (Kevin W)

Meet the British intelligence-linked firm that warped MH17 news coverage The Grayzone (Chuck L)


The Invasion of Iraq Wasn’t a “Mistake.” It Was a Crime. Jacobin (resilc)

AIPAC, FDD websites erase all evidence of their Iraq War cheerleading Responsible Statecraft

The Story of Iraq – Modern Iraq Before 1968 BBC. Resilc: “CIA great at creating its own monster in a never ending fight vs Commiezzzz.”

Israeli minister says ‘no such thing’ as Palestinian people Reuters (resilc)

Biden tells Netanyahu he backs compromise on Israel judicial overhaul Reuters (resilc)

Why the Int’l Criminal Court’s Arrest Warrant for Putin should make Israeli PM Netanyahu Afraid, Very Afraid Juan Cole


Big Brother is Watching You Watch

IKEA Adds Stock-Counting Drones To More of Its Stores The Verge

Indian Officials Cut Internet For 27 Million People Amid Search For Fugitive Washington Post

Imperial Collapse Watch

I can’t even:

US failure in Iraq opened the door for China, Russia Asia Times (Kevin W)


US police forces on alert ahead of possible Trump arrest BBC

US House Republicans launch investigation of Manhattan DA in Trump probe Reuters. Resilc: “USA USA is a freakshow without bounds.” Moi: “The case v. Trump is ridiculous but this is piss poor and silly unlees they manage to find a Federal nexus. Then it would just be piss poor. They seem to have none now. But if they find some obscure way the Feds fund his office, even through something minor, this could be game on. But it looks like these chairs are in “Fire, aim, ready” mode. Nevertheless. also instructive that three prominent Rs are sticking their necks out this way.


Washington Prepares For War With Amazon Politico

Woke Watch

<Of Course You Know What “Woke” Means Freddie deBoer (Anthony L)

Our No Longer Free Press

NY Times suffers from dementia, forgetting its own role in the Iraq War debacle Boing Boing (resilc)

The Internet Archive is defending its digital library in court today The Verge (Kevin W)

Rotten Banks

Oops. How the FDIC Guaranteed the Deposits of SVB Financial Group Adam Levitin, Credit Slips. Important if you are into geekery.

The bank panic of 2023 could be just what the stock market needs to make money for investors again MarketWatch

Former Wells Fargo Exec Could Do Prison Time American Prospect (Randy K)

Jeffrey Epstein banks to face sex trafficking case BBC (furzy)


PC Maker Acer Is Building a Fancy Electric Bike With Built-In AI electrek

Supply Chain/Inflation

African Swine Fever Surges in China Potentially Driving Pork Prices Higher Farm Policy News

Class Warfare

Paid time off is not part of workers’ ‘salary,’ U.S. court rules Reuters (Kevin W)

Amazon to Cut 9,000 More Jobs After Earlier Layoffs Wall Street Journal

Antidote du jour. Ann M: “A catfestation. Penny fully stretched and Emmett in tight curl.”

And a bonus (guurst):

See yesterday’s Links and Antidote du Jour here.

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  1. Terry Flynn

    Love the Buzzfeed list. Just one minor request – don’t please for the love of anything/holy do one from Bored Panda. The commentariat has finally reached the stage of making as a meme the distinction between “facts from other websites” and “BP facts”. BP habitually scrape nonsense from reddit, have become so sensitive to language that you can’t say “kill” but all posts with that word are adjusted to say “unalive” etc. Thus dictators have unalived loads etc….

    I complained that unlike MSM who at least have the decency to add an edit as footnote if they correct something, they simply swapped (after my correction) the picture of a generic orc to the one from LOTR Return of the King that was (according to Elijah Wood) obviously based on Harvey Weinstein. (Once you see it you really can’t ever unsee it believe me!)

    1. The Rev Kev

      It should be noted that likely all the people that came up with those logos actually graduated from college – as did the executives that gave their approval of those logos.

      1. Terry Flynn

        Yep. I advised marketers for 15 years. Thick as pig$h1t in most cases.

        The cleverest ones never let on what they were doing with our methods (see my posts passim re top blue chip Aussie bank). I only learnt about that bank’s use of our methods by accident when a friend applied for high level IT job there.

        I’d never have known otherwise. I’m sure there are other institutions doing it. They have no intention of ever showing in a Google citation search.

        1. Terry Flynn

          PS – something that reinforces Lambert’s points about the flaws in AI hit me recently. Having left academia I don’t much check my Google citations. Last time I did, I got a surprise: whilst the “definitive textbook” I co-authored in 2015 has (as expected) jumped up the rankings loads, and whilst my publications in “open access” journals showed greater citation growth, one has rapidly leapfrogged all others to become number one.

          It’s co-authored with my then boss and the Environmental economist who gained fame for calculating the cost (and hence damages) of the Exxon Valdez disaster.

          The paper is not very technical but it DOES go through the processes of “making a decision” – thus it could appeal to much wider group than economists….. Anyone working in AI would love it and a friend who DOES work in machine learning once quizzed me informally over dinner……. Curious.

        2. John Beech

          Terry, as marketing falls on me for our microbusiness, I’d be interested in learning about your methods. Color me as one ‘keenly’ interested in learning.

          For example, I have a poster of David Ogilvy’s, How to create advertising that sells, on the wall in my office. Like always referring to #1 of 39 . . . positioning before beginning a new advert/campaign just to ensure I’m in the ‘right’ frame of mind before I start.

          Anyway if you’d rather (or more like, if you feel like it), kindly reach out to me at; to take this off Lambert’s comment section.

  2. Adam1

    Maternal deaths… it’s crazy this is such a problem in this country. About 40 years ago a family friend who married late in life watched his wife give birth. She was sent home the standard 3 days later with a low grade fever. Instead of sending her home with antibiotics or keeping her an extra day or 2 to monitor her fever they told her to come back if she felt worse. 3 days later she went septic and was dead before she got to the hospital.

    1. Irrational

      My mother-in-law routinely gets prescribed antibiotics over the phone by her doctor’s office, whether appropriate or not, but certainly without seeing a doc. One time it was Cipro which nearly destroyed the tendons in her knees. This latest time they went from phone prescription of antibiotics to chest X-ray – let’s not bother with standard tests for bacteria or anything.
      Clearly pregnant women do not even warrant that level of attention.
      And if clinics start closing because of legislation maternal death rates will skyrocket.

  3. Onward to Dystopia

    It’s so cool living in a country where everyone defines their identity based on how they feel about Donald Trump. A country where we never dream of fixing problems anymore and have all just agreed to claw and gnash one another to make enough money so we can move away from those problems. A country with a eulogizing funeral director in chief who draws all political passion and enthusiasm into himself and consumes it like a black hole.
    I do wonder if Trump goes to jail (which I don’t care either way, but it would be funny for a few days in this hellscape) if the libs with TDS who have built a personality around hating Trump and caring about the day-to-day minutae of the Mueller report and all the rest of it for 6+ years will have a personality crisis if he did go away. Was it social critic Morris Berman who said Americans build personalities about what they’re against, not what they’re for, I forget.

    1. marcyincny

      I also wonder about that. If and when the current object of their obsession is gone will their world view change in any meaningful way or will they simply transfer their hatred to a new target?

      1. Screwball

        Yes, I think they will.

        As Matt Taibbi called it in some podcast a while back; the Hitler of the month.

        They live to hate, and they love to hate. I’m talking about the PMC class. They hate Trump, Trump supporters, Musk, the GOP, anyone they think is non-woke, the mouth breathing red neck stupid hicks from the sticks (who also might be Trumpers), any publication not named the NYT, WaPo, CNN, MSNBC, Vice, Slate, and of course anyone who doesn’t live in their echo chamber.

        The PMC I know simply hate everyone but themselves, and really seem to enjoy it. I quit talking to them, so they probably hate me too. I don’t care.

    2. Wukchumni

      I’m not all that absorbed with the saga, but would appreciate if we could get a mugshot countdown clock up in the right hand corner of NC.

      By the way, what sort of Kodak moment do we get?

      I’m going with the tried and true fake smile.

    3. fresno dan

      I think you are spot on. I think we just live in an entertainment, emotional media (and this includes social media of course) environment that is all emotion, all entertainment, all the time. Getting people emotional is quick and profitable and is the primary goal of all media.
      Asking what the solution is means slowing down, considering what the problem is to begin with, and understanding that the problem’s solution will be neither quick, nor easy, nor universally agreed to – and means that you lose viewers and readers.
      Maybe it is just old fogey syndrome, but I remember watching Meet the Press when I was a teenager. I really think the questions and responses were much more serious. You look at the program today and it seems to be so superficial and dogmatic that it borders on parody.

    4. Molly

      Trump’s jail I.D. picture is a guarantee of his reelection.

      Maybe the “Democrats” want him to win, so he’s responsible for the BidenDepression that is dead ahead, and the disenglement of the U.S. from potential nuclear war caused by the looting opportunity of Ukraine.

      Whatever, we are not filing any more income taxes for the next couple years because it’s just funding our own cultural, social and national destruction.

    5. Judith

      A few months ago, David/Aurelian mentioned Mark Fisher in one of his essays. I did not know who Fisher was, so I poked around. This, from an article about him in the Irish Times, seem appropriate to your question:

      Fisher accused much of this “self-styled” left of suppressing the question of class in favour of an identity politics whose hidden agenda was to solve a problem: “how do you hold immense wealth and power while also appearing as a victim?” Fisher’s opposition to this gentrification of the left made him enemies, but his key argument is hardly controversial: “A left that does not have class at its core can only be a liberal pressure group.”

  4. Martin Oline

    Thank you for the link to the Verge story “The Internet Archive is defending its digital library in court today.” I have used the Internet Archive service for years in researching genealogy and American history because they make rare and out of print books available. This would be an even greater service for people in rural areas who do not have easy access to a library. I hope they will prevail in court.
    A commenter here a few months back shared that Curzio Malaparte’s book The Skin was available there so I could read it for free. I checked this morning and they have added his books Kaputt, Woman Like Me, and Those Cursed Tuscans. I had bought the first in the interim but will now read the latter two. I recommend readers use this service before it disappears.

    1. JBird4049

      Getting some of Malaparte’s books isn’t easy. IIRC, all of his books have been translated, but the print runs seem to happen in small batches every few decades. I will have to check out Kaputt. That is one of the hard ones. I would prefer having a print copy, but if there is no other way.

      He seems to be fairly popular. I am surprised that his books are not published more often. Well, there is the one about running a successful coup that is hard to find; that one I am not surprised about.

  5. Terry Flynn

    Woke article saves the kicker for last:

    I’d rather woke politics win than conservatism. But I’d rather have a friendly forgiving plainspoken big tent civil libertarian socialist mass movement, personally. Trouble is, there is only woke and anti-woke. There is no escape.

    The critical Drinker is a Scottish film critic on YouTube. His “schtick” is being drunk but he clearly is very with it – he’s a published author and knows exactly the most commonly used rules of fiction that “work”. He is commonly regarded as part of the “Fandom menace” who call out Hollywood foibles but even he dislikes the term “woke”, admitting he tries to avoid using it. He thinks it’s become a lazy trope to “fire up” people. His most explicit criticism is here – shortly after posting he got LOADS of criticism from the idiots who share a brain cell but thankfully these days the most common comments are from people are get where he is coming from, acknowledge that Hollywood has a problem, and debate how to fix it.

    For the record, I don’t consider myself a fan of the guy…. 10% of his stuff is rubbish IMHO. However when he devotes time to a subject he is often (IMHO) right and scores mostly hits rather than misses.

    1. Chris Smith

      I was with Freddie right up until the “rather woke” part. I think John McWhorter gets it right in his book “Woke Racism,” the woke are just Calvinist fanatics with the Jesus bits and theology filed off. I grew up around Protestant fanatics in Texas and know religious fanaticism when I see it.

      So no, woke politics needs to go. We can talk after its defeated.

        1. JBird4049

          That is because a lot of anti-wokeness is plain old fashioned bigotry masquerading as just a fight against the insanity of Wokeness. They might honestly fighting it, but also want to slip in actual hatred and oppression of some combination of Blacks, or transgender people, or drag queens, or perhaps gays, lesbians, and bisexuals. Maybe all of them.

          Really, in the more extreme anti-woke elements, anyone who is not a married heterosexual who is also White, very conservative, and a conservative Christian, preferably a Evangelical or a Southern Baptist is at least a potential enemy. Only Americans who are very orthodox, plain vanilla working class and above.

          I think of the extremes of both sides as enemies of most Americans, myself. They both want to destroy the whole country so that they can create their perfect society. Not their more “liberal” or moderate wings. I might strongly disagree, even oppose, with much of what they believe, but they are not trying to label anyone who doesn’t believe just as they do as the enemy that must destroyed.

          But everything is all mixed up isn’t? Most of the categories of the last century has been made irrelevant. What is labeled as liberal or conservative often isn’t liberal or conservative. They are just labels placed over two ideologies that did not exist fifty years ago. I know that the social issues are deliberate constructs use to identify and separate Americans into two different enemy groups. And I know that much of the economic platform of both parties overlap. Honestly, it’s two groups of people growing increasingly fearful and irrational, and they are dragging us all over the cliff.

  6. Polar Socialist

    I just noticed that under the shadow of ICC’s warrant and Xi’s visit, there has been a three day conference in Moscow hosted by the Duma: “Russia – Africa in the multipolar world.”

    Apparently there were parliamentary delegations from 50 African countries participating in discussions on the relationships between African countries and Russia should be developed in the emerging new world order. According to the Russian media is was a pure love fest.

    Yesterday, before meeting Xi, Putin addressed the delegations and pointed out how Soviet Union helped to decolonize the continent, and “we” should now finish the task. Africa should be one of the leaders of the new multipolar world because it has the resources and the population – it should not be held back anymore.

    He also addressed the Black Sea situation, stating that in order to extend the “grain deal” for another 60 days, Russia wants absolute guarantees that the Ukrainian grain goes to Africa and not to feed European pigs. If the deal is not extended, Russia will deliver the amount of grain to African countries for free. And as soon as it’s possible – sanctions making deliveries so difficult – Russia will provide all the needed fertilizer. Also for free.

    Of course, the main issue was finding out how Russia can help Africa in areas of economic growth, political stability and mitigating the effects of climate change – European “security arrangements” should not be an African problem.

    It’s a tough job, but perhaps the Russian charm operation may prove to be more effective than Blinken’s “we know where your kids live…” approach.

    1. Lex

      I believe that’s the second time Putin said that Russia will give Africa grain and fertilizers for free. It’s a powerful “tool”. Once upon a time when hunger hit there would be bags of food labelled “product of USA” now there appears to be only loans that come as “product of USA”. One could argue that Putin’s offer is a cynical ploy for influence, and maybe it is. But one of his statements to the delegation was that it was clear that Africa would be a leader in the multipolar world. It looks like Russia’s relationships in Africa are sincere. It certainly seems like leaders in Africa accept Russia’s relationships as sincere.

      1. The Rev Kev

        The problem is that the EU is blocking those ships with Russian fertilizer and grain from leaving their ports. That is why the Russians only agreed on rejoining the grain deal for sixty days. If those ship are not allowed to go to their destinations, then likely the Russians will pull the plug on the grain deal itself. Those African nations aren’t stupid. They know who is blocking those ships and they also know that about 97% of the release grain is only going to developed countries, especially the EU.

      2. digi_owl

        The basic think is that many a smaller nation have been pushed by IMF etc to prioritize cash crops over food crops. This with the understanding the money the nation would get from the exporting said crops would be used to buy staple food crops from USA in particular.

        Thing is that this sets the nations up to be pressured by their buyers refusing to buy, thus sending the nation into a debt spiral. This makes for a potent “soft power” stick for getting rid of an uppity government.

  7. The Rev Kev

    “Washington prepares for war with Amazon”

    Maybe they will and maybe they won’t. It depends. Washington can’t push them too far as it is well know that Amazon runs all the cloud servers for the CIA and that is not an organization to make an enemy off. And that relationship goes back a decade or more. So I expect Amazon will have to make a few changes to their business practices and donate an impressive amount of billions in fines to Washington and then it will be back to business as usual-

    1. tevhatch

      The original article is called a shakedown. Create a threat, even if it’s not real, to remind the counter-party they need to top up their campaign donations.

  8. zagonostra

    >China’s Xi calls for ‘rational way’ out of Ukraine conflict AlJazeera

    Putin has welcomed China’s willingness to play a “constructive role” in ending the conflict in Ukraine and has “high expectations” of Monday’s talks with Xi.

    What’s with the quotation marks on rational, constructive, and high expectations? Where is the ambiguity? The problem is that the U.S. suffers from what Plato describes as pleonexia, “the hunger for more and more” and is not subject/amenable to rational, constructive dialogue. As Ernst Cassirer wrote in “The Myth of the State.”

    This craving for more and more exceeds all measure and destroys all measure, and since measure, right proportion…had been declared by Plato to be the standard of the health of private and public life, it follows that the will to power, if it prevails over all other impulses, necessarily leads to corruption and destruction.

    1. David

      I presume it’s the usual journalistic convention of distinguishing between direct speech and reported speech. The bits in quotes are presumably words that Xi actually used, and that Putin has picked up and repeated. It’s the difference between, ‘zaganostra queried the use of quotation marks’, and ‘zaganostra said “What’s with the quotation marks,”‘

    2. digi_owl

      I noticed when the Ukraine thing kicked off that Al-Jazeera often copypaste news agency articles uncritically. Thus it’s tone and attitude would swing drastically depending on it being a news agency article or their own staff writing. In this instance the by line seem to be a bit mixed, but i suspect it for the most part is lifted from something like Reuters or AP.

  9. tom67

    Re long covid: every day there are new variants and more warnings about how deadly they are. What is always missing is the information whether those suffering from Long Covid have been vaccinatet or not. I wonder why that is? And I also wonder how much grant money from Big Pharma those scientists get.

    1. Terry Flynn

      Total anecdote here – but supported from anecdata from my dermatologist – long COVID definitely predated the vaccines. It started after the first strain of covid before any vaccine was produced.

      Personally I, as someone who is very very pro-vaccination generally, has had “issues” with the mRNA boosters, as have my family. “Traditional” vaccines (AZ) gave no problems (beyond all vaccines’ quick decline in efficacy).

      I simply want more data on the “new style” vaccines before accepting them…. And I speak as an immunocompromised person.

      1. Jabura Basaidai

        i read most of the stuff here at NC about the variants and efficacy of the vax – the one thing that seems clear is that the vax does not prevent catching the virus, only improves the outcome if you catch it – never got a booster after the initial pokes in early 2020 and decided not to get the mRNA shot again but when Novavax became available i went and got the 2 shots last Fall – but now it seems the only thing that makes sense is to mask up in crowds and indoor venues to prevent catching it – i have been masking since the start and do continue to mask up – i take quite a few supplements and perhaps that is why when i did catch the bug, surprise surprise, it seemed asymptomatic – had a bad cough new years eve, spent happily by myself, which i attributed to smoking a legal commodity here in Michigan but a friend told me in a phone call to test and was positive – i could taste, smell, eat, no fever and worked outdoors on property by myself and 5 days later tested negative – go figure – was it the raised amount of vitamin D i take regularly? the nattokinase that i have taken for over a decade on suggestion of my doctor after having a retinal vein occlusion? and all the other supplements included taken regularly for last 15+ yrs? – my brother and his wife in Colorado who are serious maskers got it and also take supplements were laid up for over 2 weeks when they got it – not a big vax supporter and when my daughter was born deferred the automatic vaccines they give a newborn which she only got when was necessary to be admitted to daycare and then school – she is healthy to this day(33yrs old) – her and her husband did get the initial vax and boosted once then stopped and continued masking – the only vax i do get with regularity is for tetanus and have never and never will get a flu vax – but that’s just me and don’t preach any of it to anybody else – Terry i am not immunocompromised but do have a bovine valve replacement so the whole blood and circulatory issues about the virus i read on NC made me feel in the same cautious boat as you –

    2. Ghost in the Machine

      There was a paper in one of the Nature publications that found that vaccination reduced chances of long covid by around 20-30 per day t if I remember. Not great

  10. digi_owl

    Funny how it always comes back to a stick measuring contest, and about who gets to put their stick where.

  11. tevhatch

    Vessels claiming to be Chinese warships are messing with passenger planes The “free” press, fund by the security state:
    That has to be a pen name for a NED/CIA collective. The amount of paper that the Doberman puts out is impressive. I’m going to do a search to see if there is a Larry Rottweilersmith later.

  12. Mikerw0

    An AI bike really? A bike is among the most beautiful machines mankind has ever created in its utility, simplicity and universal appeal. I speak as an avid cyclist, who owns multiple bikes. When I pushed to answer the question my favorite bike is my fixed gear. It is just a bike. No electronics, no complex drivetrains, etc.

    The real issue with software and bikes is it is fracturing the market and repair shops can’t fix them without expensive special equipment. The issues become computer code and not mechanical.

    And bikes are one of the easiest and cheapest solutions to addressing climate change globally. Just make American cities bike friendly as in Europe.

    1. wuzzy

      I like the 15mph. There’s a steep little rise around here that my 80yr old body can crest at 18-20 with a 20 lb bike. No way do I want an AI braking for me when I’m in the middle of an evasive action.

      35 pounds is a lot to push home on a dead battery.

    2. Skip Intro

      The announcement was poorly timed. A mere 3 months ago, you could still disrupt a la:
      {household object} + AI = Profit.
      Now in this post-zirpocalyptic landscape they may need customers instead of investors, which could go very hard indeed.

    3. Carolinian

      Plus they explode and burn down apt buildings in NYC when owners add on unauthorized batteries and such. Seems this has become a big controversy there.

      I’d say the real problem with ebikes would be the dangers of the bike part without dedicated paths and trails. The bicycle is indeed a wonderfully efficient machine–particularly with skinny tires–and Europe and China have used them hugely in the past.

    4. Mikel

      It’s like they have a list of great things, get together, and say:”How can we take the sheer enjoyment, personal control, and agency away from this product or service?”

      But again, like with a lot of these ideas, an AI bike could be great for the handicapped/disabled and I bet unaffordable for who it could serve best.

  13. The Rev Kev

    “Russia defies Putin arrest warrant by opening its own case against ICC”

    Meant to mention in a comment yesterday that having the ICC issue an arrest warrant for Putin seemed to be pretty dodgy for an important reason. It turns out that heads of state have absolute immunity as set out in customary international law. And certainly Putin is the head of state for Russia-

    But if you wanted to put a major spike in any efforts to bring a negotiated peace to the Ukraine by having one critical party being under threat of being arrested, then mission accomplished. How bad an idea is this warrant? Even John Bolton has come out in public and tore strips off this idiocy. John Freaking Bolton!

    1. ChrisFromGA

      I think it just shows how worried the clown car brigade in DC is about China somehow leading a peace plan effort. Burning the ships.

    2. hk

      ICC would then be guilty of literal crime against peace. I personally think that was a dodgy charge invented at Nuremberg, but if the shoe exists and fits…..

    3. NN Cassandra

      It seems to be created for purely internal Western propaganda reasons – fact checkers can now point to official document with real rubber stamp saying Putin is war criminal, so here is the truth. I’m not even sure how they think they will enforce this. Like Putin offers to visit some African countries and West threatens them with sanctions if they agree? At the rate things are going right now, Africans may just laugh West off and welcome Putin anyway. But I guess our rulers going to try to milk the unipolar moment before it’s gone for good.

      1. Irrational

        I find it particularly hilarious that Biden endorses the ICC warrant, when the US does not recognize the ICC, there is a law that the US may use military force to free any Americans similarly charged (as mentioned by several posters the other day) and the Pentagon is blocking the US giving info to the ICC, because they worry that this risks indictment of Americans. How illogical is that?

  14. DorothyT

    Re: Iraq — not a mistake. A crime.

    This morning’s WNYC-FM (NPR) news program featured this interview with a former Iraq prisoner who suffered torture by Americans. Perhaps it was heard nationally.

    He was released without having been charged after a year-long incarceration. He claims he was seized when he visited his uncle in prison. He welcomed the Americans who rid his country of Saddam Hussein. His telling of the aftermath of his life is sobering — for him, his family, and the Americans who cheered this war.

    1. pjay

      Articles like this make me want to bang my head against the wall. Everything said about the Iraq war and the lies used to justify it are true. So what lessons do we take from that knowledge? I read carefully to see if there was any reference to our current crime scene in Ukraine. There was one sentence in the middle of the article:

      “All of this [i.e. our lies justifying the Iraq invasion] is nonsensical in the same way as Vladimir Putin’s claim that he invaded Ukraine to “demilitarize and denazify” that country.”

      That’s it. Not *our* lies, justifying *our* long-term plans for smothering Russia via NATO expansion and support of ethnic cleansing “nationalists”. No. *Putin’s* lies. The fact that many of the same liars are still at work today “rewriting history” – including *f**king David Frum!* – seems not to register with this author.

      No lessons to be learned here. Thanks again Jacobin.

      1. fresno dan

        I agree – the few articles I read critical of our Ukraine involvment have an obligatory statement of how bad Putin is. I am not sure if it is because these people don’t know the history of the collapse of the Soviet Union and the deal being originally not to expand nato, as well as the nefarious actions of the CIA in the region, or if there is such a McCarthyite zeigeist that no one dares not to profess the offical dogma that Putin is as bad as Trump.
        I think there is a anti historical, anti intellectualism in American discourse that has in the last decade gotten much, much worse than it has been.

        1. Keith Newman

          @fresno dan, 1:24
          I vote for McCarthyite zeigeist. People I know who are well aware of the past feel obliged to refer to Putin as evil or Russian imperialism. Sad really. We live in a reality of the absurd.

  15. Paula

    ““Mexico’s policies threaten to disrupt billions of dollars in agricultural trade and they will stifle the innovation that is necessary to tackle the climate crisis and food security challenges if left unaddressed.”

    So, making people eat GMO and cancer causing glyphosate is part of their means of tackling the climate crisis? Is this part of the depopulation program? I would also like to add, so that it is not missing from the reasons to go organic, is human health. The healthier the soil, the more nutrients in the crop being grown and eaten, and the more the human immune system is supported. Something to think about in the age of pandemics.

  16. The Rev Kev

    “The US’ Resumed Deportation Of Mobilization-Fleeing Russian Men Discredits Its Soft Power”

    Not that I have much sympathy for men who abandon their country in time of war, these guys are really being given the raw deal as they are no longer needed. I can imagine how it will go down-

    Border official: ‘We are sending you back to Russia.’

    Russian Guy: ‘But why? I abandoned everything to flee the Putin government and come to the west.’

    Border official: ‘We don’t need you any more so we are giving you the boot. It’s your own fault anyway.’

    Russian Guy: ‘How is it my fault?’

    Border official: ‘You trusted us.’

    1. R.S.

      The current joke is making the road at the Upper Lars border crossing into a ring one. Those who fled to the US are far too few and detached from the general population.

    2. GF

      When will we send back the Ukrainians who dodged their draft (hundreds or thousands) and fled to the USA? Seems like Z needs the cannon fodder now more than ever.

  17. griffen

    Spending $500,000 on a home in the desert without connecting to appropriate water delivering utilities. This is indeed the stupidest of all timelines. I guess in one instance, I do get the one horse owner who purposely bought land with a well.

    Is it because the confines of Maricopa County are just so welcoming and inviting, that no matter the expense and the ongoing inconvenience we must have this home on this piece of land? Man, I just don’t get the attraction.

    1. Wukchumni

      Cadillac Desert, by Marc Reisner* is widely considered the best book on water in the west, and PBS did a 4 series show on it about 25 years ago that’s quite compelling, featuring Reisner.

      It’s 4 hours or so the whole shebang and really worthy of your attention, well done!

      Cadillac Desert – Part 1: Mulholland’s Dream

      * Reisner passed away around the turn of the century and his last book deserves as much praise as Cadillac Desert, but isn’t as widely known, a pity.

      A Dangerous Place: California’s Unsettling Fate delves into the California Delta and the rickety series of 19th century levees that could be compromised in an earthquake or heavy flooding, and currently the 1-2 exacta of both happening at the same time isn’t in the cards, but consulting Murphy.

      The far north of the state which usually gets the goods in terms of snow and water and is doing ok, but nothing compared to the southern Sierra here going through the winter of record for the past 125+ years and its series of rickety levees holding the water back from flooding Godzone.

      1. JBird4049

        >>>A Dangerous Place: California’s Unsettling Fate delves into the California Delta and the rickety series of 19th century levees that could be compromised in an earthquake or heavy flooding, and currently the 1-2 exacta of both happening at the same time isn’t in the cards, but consulting Murphy.

        The levies on the California Delta have gotten better since the book was publish; they have gone from nearly catastrophic to merely not good at all if that makes sense. I think that Big Ag as well as some of the towns behind the levies screamed enough at the legislature to get them to actually spend money on repairs and upgrades.

        Since the government has, like the federal government, gotten stupid, foolish, and unwilling to spend money on unsexy things like levies, canals, or even dams, it was probably an epic campaign of screaming.

        Anyone can look at a map, read about the differences in elevations and the history of the Central Vally, and figure it out, but who knows just when the earthquake or rains will come? The temptation is always to put it off.

    2. InThePines

      The real puzzle is why banks loan on houses with no water. It’s not a Maricopa County exclusive- water hauling is the rule outside of municipalities in northern Arizona where well depth exceeds a half mile. There’s expanding sprawl up to the south rim of the Grand Canyon that depends on water from wells 25-70 miles away. Phoenix-area hardware stores are going to be selling lots of water tanks and trailers.

    3. Carolinian

      A NY Times version of this story was in Links a couple of months ago. And yes they bought a house without a secure water source so boo hoo on them. Meanwhile still more desert gone.

      Supposedly AZ law says that large developers now have to have a provable water source good for decades or no permit. But there was a story about a full town developer west of Phoenix with the same water problem.

      1. GF

        Would that be Bill Gates. Water isn’t the only issue with his planned development – there is Palo Verde nuclear power plant (the largest in the USA I think) just down the road and down wind that is approaching 40 years old. I’m sure the sales brochures point this out.

    4. digi_owl

      Heh, anyone remember the long rows of tanker trucks filled with high rise sewage in Dubai? They were a result of all the hotels etc that sprang up without adequate utilities.

  18. Wukchumni

    Gooooooood Moooooorning Fiatnam!

    The slopes were our sworn enemy in the highlands, in by no means our winter of missed content, as another battle raged overhead with yet another soggy sortie on tap.

    They let it slip that they meant business, game so on.

    1. Displaced Platitudes

      Arriving to the land of Atmospheric Deltas tomorrow; monitoring Lake Kaweah levels and packing water wings. A week or so in Visalia with family for funeral happening. I’ve admonished checking for flood insurance coverage and having a bailout plan with neighbors and friends. I’m being largely ignored because it hasn’t happened yet and hasn’t for a decade or more. Next several weeks seem lower risk unless things warm up quickly; after that, thoughts and prayers to all denizens of the Tulare Lake Basin.
      I’m hoping that you have an exit route and will escape the worst of any calamity!

      1. Wukchumni

        Thanks for your concern, but thankfully we’re above the fray, er the dam.

        Drove by Lake Kaweah and the rather amazing looking St. John’s River en route to Woodlake yesterday and i’ve never seen it so pregnant with the goods, and so far the water is being shluffed off into channels somewhat, and not so much in never-never land where all the Ag is, in a decidedly ‘now & later saga’, if we get through this crucial perhaps last storm (I had to say it, my bad) of the winter, there’ll be nothing to worry about except that million acre feet of frozen goods on high that all has to come down seeking the lowest point to hang out, but how?

        1. Wukchumni


          2nd lead article in the LA Times

          Amid soaking storms, California turns to farmland to funnel water into depleted aquifers

          In parts of California’s Central Valley, farmlands are being used to soak up storm water and replenish depleted groundwater.

          Not much of the largess will perk into the ground, because the farmers drained out the aquifers down to around 1,200 feet and all it did was compact the possibilities, as in paucity.

          And ‘farmland’ out here is largely orchards and Big Teat.

          1. Displaced Platitudes

            Soil subsidence means that the water can be 50′ deeper than before irrigation. Farm workers might need to paddle to higher ground in inflatable rafts.
            The landowners will richly deserve 10 years of income loss for their inherent privilege of drilling deeper wells until they hit magma. The country might be too poor to bail them out given the Zelensky reverse-sanction tax.
            I’ll keep an eye peeled for rising water if this storm is a big one; only seeing 2-3″ forecast for Visalia area so far.

  19. The Rev Kev

    “Stuck with the soul”

    ‘The idea of the soul is obviously a nonsense, yet its immaterial mysterious nature has deep hooks in the human psyche’

    And with that beginning statement, this article has already discredited itself. Do we have souls? I don’t know. And a scientist can’t say one way or another either. And I have yet to hear an explanation of how our minds hook into matter. And trying to do a hand-wave and say that it is a matter of bio-chemical reactions doesn’t cut it either. If you have ever seen a photo of a soldier with a “thousand yard stare”, you can believe that something in him was damaged. But I will quote here Commander Data’s thoughts on the subject as it clarifies what I think-

    ‘The most elementary and valuable statement in science, the beginning of wisdom is ‘I don’t know.’

    So I don’t know. And neither does the author.

    1. Mildred Montana

      The writer says, “The idea of the soul is 𝘰𝘣𝘷𝘪𝘰𝘶𝘴𝘭𝘺 a nonsense…” As you imply, he or she should have stopped there. But I guess there’s not much of a market for 9-word articles.

    2. hk

      I long for the day when an AI can actually say “I don’t know.”. Instead, however, we have had humans become more like AI, I wonder, as so many can’t seem to imagine that they don’t know and wear their know-it-allness as a badge of pride.

    3. Henry Moon Pie

      It looks like this Dawkinsian essay fell flat. Evolutionary biologists would be much more persuasive if they could drop the hubris down just a notch or two.

      The idea that we’re intellectually capable of comprehending this universe into which we were born in any kind of full way is a silly as projecting a human being up into the sky (rather literally: Ascension) to rule the universe.

    4. semper loquitur

      Typical materialist intellectual onanism. The article follows the usual form: make some bold declaration such as the soul is “nonesense” to place yourself on the Right Side of Things. Then meander through some historical and literary references to show you’ve done the work to fully understand the spiritual topic at hand, that you are sympathetic to the need that some fragile humans have to believe in such fantasies. Then, wrap-up with a sigh and an admission that we are stuck with such notions because people…

      There is lots to say about his claims but I’ll just pull out one: the “God of the Gaps” argument. This is a double-edged Nerf sword. For the believer, to say that God is needed to explain what science cannot is false because we may very well find that science explains it at some point. For the critic, the notion that what science deals with impinges upon the purview of God is to misunderstand the concept of an omnipotent being and It’s relationship to the world. Science can model the observable universe and but it cannot speak to something that by definition is unable to be modeled. How can you encapsulate That which entails everything into a model, the thing which by necessity excludes most things?

    5. QuicksilverMessenger

      I love this scene from Monty Python’s Meaning of Life, where they, of all things, actually address the ‘meaning of life and the soul’. You might miss it if you blink. Or are otherwise distracted by…
      And also, apparently, people aren’t wearing enough hats. They seem to get so much right

    6. juliania

      It’s late, but my thought on the sentence would be : does the author know that “psyche” is the greek word for soul?

      Thanks for the quote; I felt no need to read the article.

  20. Mikel

    The Story of Iraq – Modern Iraq Before 1968 BBC. Resilc: “CIA great at creating its own monster in a never ending fight vs Commiezzzz”

    The CIA: a security firm for global corporations that is subsidized by the US govt.

    1. .human

      I will put this here again, as I do from time to time: As Michael Ruppert so succinctly put it, “The CIA is Wall Street, Wall Street is the CIA.”

    2. Kouros

      The proponents of CIA, when it was created were former lawyers of Wall Street. Cynthia Chung has plenty of articles on that matter.

  21. The Rev Kev

    ‘AZ 🛰🌏🌍🌎
    🇯🇵🇺🇦Japanese Prime Minister Fumio Kishida visits Ukraine on an unannounced visit — NHK with reference to the message of the country’s authorities’

    There are only two reasons why Japanese Prime Minister Fumio Kishida is in the Ukraine. To give Zelensky more money and to give him more weapons. They even took him on a dog and pony show to Bucha to lay a wreath outside a church. I don’t know why it was a secret though. Certainly the Japanese would have had to clear his visit with the Russians first-

    1. Acacia

      Agree that calling it “secret” is BS.

      The Japanese friend who mentioned this to me today commented: “the government is probably just saying it has been a ‘secret’ to try to impress the public, as if Kishida is on some important mission.”

    2. Kouros

      They have to give something back, since Japan is buying Russian oil above the enforced cap price…

  22. Wukchumni

    Ran into Florid Man in Orlando, his jalopy got a flat and he explained to me what needed to be done in order to get back on the road:

    ‘I must first disengage the lug nuts from the semi-soft plied rubber surrounding an entirely metal fitted round orifice, that is after ascending to the occasion.’

  23. Lex

    The NC take on the Chinese ceasefire framework is on the mark. The point of it was to present it, have Russia willing to discuss it (i.e. willing to negotiate) and the Americans to spit on it. Once again, the US ran headlong into the trap.

    Which is not to say that Russia wouldn’t negotiate under the framework, regardless of what Martynov says because Putin’s published response to Xi on it was A. predetermined and B. after the US spit on the deal. Russia could get everything it demands under the framework. Putin’s cautious and careful preparatory work and how the four oblasts were brought into Russia was purposefully done to be in line with UN rules and established precedent. That is not a “deal breaker” for the Russian side. It’s also a starting point for negotiations, not a finished document.

    What may be more interesting is that after various US officials said that under no circumstances could China or its plan be the basis for a negotiated settlement, the Kremlin announced that it won’t participate/accept negotiations with the involvement of the US and a handful of vassals. Aaand, diplomatic check. Nobody would have stopped western participation under the Chinese framework. Now (assuming Russia sticks to that announcement), the only way negotiations happen is if the US is not directly involved. So now a settlement of the conflict almost requires Ukraine end its relationship with the west.

    1. hk

      So much for Russia being weaker than the West at this “information war” business. Huffing and puffing a lot and making grandiose statements apparently (who knew!) are not signs of successful information warfare.

      1. Lex

        Russia’s information war in the west is lacking, but it never had a chance because in the land of free speech, Russian speech was immediately curtailed! in the RoW, the Russian information war is a blazing success. But it’s the odd information war tactic that Russia employs: speaking quietly and truthfully (to the extent that nation states do) while backing up statements with behavior. Indeed, the US tactic is pitiful except as directed at its own population.

        1. digi_owl

          Because USA is behaving like a late stage European empire.

          Their main focus is to get the public to support sending their kids to die as thugs for Wall Street abroad, not to be friends with the global south.

    2. Stephen

      The US response also underlines the fiction that Ukraine is some form of independent entity that can make its own decisions. Feels very clear that all strategic decisions are 100% controlled by the US paymaster, as we saw with Boris Johnson’s errand running for the Biden administration last year to stop peace negotiations.

      At the tactical and operational levels, uncontrolled stuff can no doubt happen because the US cannot have its (or vassal state) Ukrainian speaking commissars everywhere in the chain of command to oversee everything. US decision makers themselves are also not necessarily fully aligned with each other either. This also means it is always possible to say that Zelensky ignored western advice as a way to blame the proxy for specific failures. He is probably getting conflicting opinions anyway.

      But hard to believe that anything big such as negotiating peace or choosing which offensives to launch gets done without the say so of some form of US handler. Zelensky wants to be able to enjoy his overseas houses one day too. If Russian assets can be seized then I am sure that ways could be found to do that to him if he does not toe the line. Or worse.

    3. David

      It demonstrates that there is an important difference between diplomatic manoeuvring on the one hand, and “winning Twitter” on the other, although the West doesn’t seem to understand that. The US has, in effect, now ruled itself out of a seat at the negotiating table (if there is one, which is not certain) although I’m not sure it realises it. The rest of the world understands, though.

  24. Mikel

    “How Chinese Companies Are Reinventing Management” Harvard Business Review

    This isn’t a reinvention of management at all. It’s the same old, mind-numbing, tired-ass Taylorism…digitized.
    Boring, uninspiring, intrusive, and the type of thing that drives high-turnover rates among the most imaginative.

  25. The Rev Kev

    “China’s Naval Problem”

    Andrei Martyanov certainly lays out a good technical explanation of the present situation. Of course if the Chinese stationed submarines on the other side of that contact line, that could cause all sorts of chaos. Right now Xi is in Moscow visiting Putin for three days. He has with him a strong military contingent so it looks like this de-facto Chinese-Russian alliance may start to have a strong military component. At the present time, the Russian submarine technology is superb and is either on par with or superior to that of the US. So if the Chinese could get access to this Russian submarine technology for their own new submarines, this could cause all sorts of problems for the US and allied navies in the Pacific. If the situation got to the point where the US Navy was getting ready to fire off salvos of missiles at the Chinese Navy, then you might have some Chinese submarines launch missiles at those carriers while others sink tankers, transports and all the ancillary ships that a modern fleet needs to use when away from their own shores. Add those Kinzai missiles and that would be a pretty bad brew.

    1. tevhatch

      A blockade of China may come back to bite with a blockade of USA/Canada’s West and East Coasts, eventually this would to go nuclear and it’s all-she-wrote. Joe’s good though, he’s done his rosary, burned his candles, and is ready to do his death cult thing.

    2. RobertC

      I believe Andrei Martyanov’s objective was to highlight the missile aspect of modern naval warfare and introduce the Kinzal as a counter to the JASSM and other US missiles. And he did so in a very readable and even entertaining essay.

      However in the First Island Chain scenario, I believe two factors will have primary effect:

      (1) the Hughes/Tangredi equations Bigger Fleets Win

      (2) China’s GrayZone operations China Security Report 2023: China’s Quest for Control of the Cognitive Domain and Gray Zone Situations particularly the role of Maritime Militia Units (Figure 3.1). China can (and I believe will) easily flood the zone with PLAN, CCG and MMU ships overloading US Sense-Control-Engage battle management capabilities, particularly when ship-to-ship contact tactics (ie shouldering) are used. And then there is Israel’s shadowing technique which China’s sixty Type 22s could use to great effect.

      In summary, the Kinzhal is a fun scenario but I think the Russians will keep the technology and the missiles to themselves for a few more years.

      1. NN Cassandra

        If the need arises, Russia can just sell Kinzals to China from its stocks. After all it’s well established part of rules-based international order that when internationally recognized borders of nation are under attack, you have to supply it with all the weapons it needs to defend itself.

      2. RobertC

        I’m not surprised the Marines have anticipated my MMU-Type22 scenario. Today’s TheWarZone The Compelling Case For The AH-1 Cobra In A High-End Pacific Fight has Colonel Nathan “MOG” Marvel saying:

        One of the unique things about the Indo-Pacific theater and its vast expanses, is the use by China of a maritime militia to observe movements while appearing to be commercial fishing vessels. … We may enable some high-end hunting and some stuff for some higher class of ships but I think honestly, if you were to ask me about HMLA in sea denial as an enabler, I think it’s probably against a maritime militia threat, or maybe even low-end corvettes.”

    3. Michaelmas

      Rev Kev: … the Russian submarine technology is superb and is either on par with or superior to that of the US. So if the Chinese could get access to this Russian submarine technology for their own new submarines, this could cause all sorts of problems for the US and allied navies in the Pacific

      Martyanov has no idea what the Chinese may have in the submarine-naval warfare technology line that nobody else does — super-cavitating torpedoes, naval loitering munitions (self-steering mine swarms), who knows what.

      I bought Martyanov’s latest book. I gave up after the first two chapters because he was trying to provide specific metrics and values for things for which in the real world there aren’t — cannot be — fully satisfactory metrics and values, all so he can then pull these equations out his own fundament that he pretends will supply the definitive, final answers on these issues.

      Sure, he’s not wrong about the big picture, which is that the US military with its ridiculously expensive, non-robust ‘big platform’ weapon systems — aircraft carriers, F-35s, etcetera — awaits its ‘French knights at Agincourt’ moment. But anybody with two neurons to knock together knows that.

      For a specific example of the kind of crucial question that isn’t in Martyanov’s analyses and that I wonder about: if a shooting war starts in the Pacific and the Chinese start knocking down our satellites and we theirs, can the US Navy and Air Force function at that distance without the connectivity those satellites provide, even with the new forward bases it’s been setting up?

      I doubt it. But I don’t know, because there are too many imponderables — some of them to do with new technologies that may be game-changers, but a lot of them to do with who gets in the first hits in what order with what effects. War is an essentially chaotic, random business.

      Helmuth von Moltke: ‘No battle plan survives contact with the enemy.’

      Mike Tyson: ‘Everybody has a plan till they get hit in the face.’

  26. Questa Nota

    PTO, yet another monetization and dehumanization of what used to be employment. What should it be called now, and how will that become a wedge for more two-tier wedgies?

  27. Mildred Montana

    >‘That scares me’: New childhood obesity guidelines still face a long road to consensus STAT

    Good article. I found it a fair, balanced overview of the problem.

    My opinion is not so balanced however: Be very cautious with quick fixes. In the case of obesity, those would be drugs and bariatric surgery.

    Most NC readers will remember the fat-substitute Olestra from the 90s. It was designed to replace the fats in popular snack foods with an undigestible one. A miracle fat! Movie-watchers could now gorge on as many bags of potato chips as they wished—without gaining weight!

    Things turned out differently. “Pringles Lite” and “Lays Lite” (both Olestra products) were discontinued in 2015. Today, due to possible side-effects, “Olestra is prohibited from sale in many markets, including the European Union and Canada.” (Wiki)

  28. JTMcPhee

    Yesterday I mentioned a “dead hand” doomsday device controlling the Russian nuclear arsenal. Seems some folk aren’t familiar with the reality of it.

    Russia’s ‘Dead Hand’ Is a Soviet-Built Nuclear Doomsday Device —
    Blake Stilwell

    A lot of great technology was developed during the Cold War. Things like GPS, the internet and microchips were all developed as part of the arms-race tech boom. Unfortunately, so was the Novichok nerve agent, the world’s largest nuclear weapon and Russia’s doomsday device, just to name a few.

    You read that right. Like something out of one of the worst James Bond movies, the Soviet Union developed a world-ending mechanism that would launch all of its nuclear weapons without any command from an actual human.

    Russia currently has an estimated 1,600 deployed tactical nuclear weapons, with another 2,400 strategic nuclear weapons tied to intercontinental ballistic missiles. This makes Russia the largest nuclear power in the world. All of these weapons are tied into the Perimeter, an automatic nuclear weapons control system.

    The RT-2PM ICBM was designed to be road mobile and is mounted on a heavy truck.
    In a crisis that might mean a first strike from the United States, high-ranking government officials or military commanders could activate the Perimeter. Perimeter would guarantee that the Soviet Union (and now, Russia) could respond even if its entire armed forces were wiped out.

    Once switched on, the Perimeter system can launch the entire Russian nuclear arsenal in response to a nuclear attack. It was part of the Cold War doctrine of mutually assured destruction, a means of deterring nuclear attacks by ensuring the side who initiated a first strike also would be annihilated.

    Called “Dead Hand” in the West, the theory is that a command and control system measures communications on military frequencies, radiation levels, air pressure, heat and short-term seismic disturbances. If the measurement points to a nuclear attack, the Perimeter begins a sequence that would end in the firing of all ICBMs in the Soviet (now, Russian) arsenal.

    Perimeter would launch a command rocket, tipped with a radio warhead that transmits launch orders to Russian nuclear silos, even with the presence of radio jamming. The rocket would fly across the entire length of the country. After a number of test launches to prove the viability of such a command rocket, the Perimeter system went online in 1985.

    The Soviet Union never confirmed that such a system ever existed, but Russian Strategic Missile Forces Gen. Sergey Karakaev confirmed it to a Russian newspaper in 2011, saying the U.S. could be destroyed in 30 minutes. Russian state media outlets suggest the system was upgraded to include radar early warning systems and Russia’s new hypersonic missiles.

    In the United States, similar technologies were developed. Seismic and radiation sensors are used to monitor parts of the U.S. and the world for nuclear explosions and other activity, but the U.S. military never created an automatic trigger for its arsenal. Instead, it ensured that American humans with the ability and authority to launch a second strike would survive a first strike.

    Since the Perimeter is reportedly still active, the danger of an automatic, computer-generated nuclear strike still exists. Now that Russian President Vladimir Putin has put Russia’s nuclear weapons on high alert, he might have taken Russia’s doomsday device on notice as well.

    And the people who rule us are, on the current record, insane beyond the degree of insanity required to make Mutual Assured Destruction “work.” I have little doubt that the neocons in the policy bubble and the generals and admirals in the “chain of command” would happily summon the Beast by nuking the world to insure that the Evil Russians and Evil Chicoms don’t “win.” Gotterdammerung Is Us.

  29. Mikel

    “Washington Prepares For War With Amazon” Politico

    Amazon is making a lot of cuts. If this is true and happens, Amazon cut its political contributions.

  30. Carolinian

    Interesting story about the Internet Archive case and book digitization. On the one hand you could observe that libraries may be fostering their own obsolescence by embracing ebooks. On the other hand you could observe the same about publishers and argue that they are hypocritical to sell ebook licenses to libraries–encouraging the public to use this format–and then try to stuff the genie back in the bottle when unwelcome side uses such as book scanning take place. After all I don’t need the library to scan an old book since I can do it myself and have done so in one instance of a book that I particularly liked with the physical copy now having been tossed by our library on theory that they need the space.

    All of which is to say the publishers want the old copyright laws to apply to an entirely new technology. This hasn’t worked for the movie studios and it may not for them either, regardless of what the court rules. As Doctorow once wrote about the latter, if they go too far in attacking their customer there’s always “piracy, the obvious choice.” Computers are empowering for everyone.

  31. Tom Stone

    Why is the Biden family corruption becoming an issue now?
    The FBI has had the first of Hunter’s lost laptops for nearly three years, Tony Bobulinski’s testimony about
    “The Big Guy” was@2 years ago and it’s only now an issue.
    This feels to me like that feebs were happy to keep Brandon on a leash with a choke collar and they are yanking on it now because Joe went a little too far…but like some really bad dogs Joe will keeps biting at everything in reach no matter how hard they yank.

  32. Wukchumni

    Nobody’s calling for a bovine intervention as of yet in Godzone, er Tulare County where 450,000 of them congregate-the nation’s largest dairy-producing county, but there’s a CAFOstrophe brewing in that Bessie (er, there aren’t any beef cattle around these parts-but oddly you’ll see the infrastructure: fences-barns-corrals,etc, for range cattle in the foothills but no cows-as they got raptured eons ago) is gonna get flooded out, and where do you put her, with her needs of being milked twice a day in danger, too…

    ,,,did I mention force majeure manure?

  33. Wukchumni

    McCarthy downplays N.Y. case against Trump, dismisses it as ‘personal money’ (WaPo)

    My Kevin’s (since ’07) lodestar has been his Donald, and if turning tricks with money is what it takes, well…alrighty then.

  34. Maxwell Johnston

    “Ukraine says Russia Kalibr missile cargo hit in transit to Crimea”

    The drone is back. All day today (at least each time I checked on flightradar24), there’s been a Reaper drone flying back and forth well south of Crimea, about 2/3 of the way from the southernmost tip of Crimea to the Turkish coast, just a shade north of the civilian jet corridor running along the southern Black Sea. This is much farther south than where it was flying before last week’s incident; previously it was flying semicircles much closer to Crimea.

  35. some guy

    ” AIPAC, FDD erase all evidence of their Iraq War cheerleading” . . .

    This will provide an interesting “natural experiment” for seeing just how good the Internet Archive Wayback Machine really is for “preserving the digitized record”. Digital hobbyists with the ability to screenshoot and save pages and also print them onto dead tree hardcopy form should do so starting immediately. They should find all the relevant pages for AIPAC and FDD on the Wayback Machine and scan scan scan copy copy copy.

    And then we can see how fast AIPAC and FDD move to instruct the Internet Archive to scrub all those archived pages till they are squeaky clean and shiny.

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