Links 4/17/2023

Lightning Bolt Deposits a Strange Mineral Never Seen on Earth Before Science Alert

Did unicorns exists? New research traces cultural traditions to find their origins Interesting Engineering


In East Palestine, a nightmare that never ends Grist



Iraq’s Marshes Parched as Government Focuses on Oil New Lines Magazine

Are thousands of Americans being poisoned by PFAS in their tap water? Minneapolis Star Tribune

Time Is Running Out for Uganda’s Vanishing Glaciers Wired

No asteroid impacts needed: Newborn Earth made its own water, study suggests


High risk of autoimmune diseases after COVID-19 Nature (Mark N)

A global aircraft-based wastewater genomic surveillance network for early warning of future pandemics The Lancet. From the summary: “We propose the development of a global aircraft-based wastewater genomic surveillance network, with the busiest international airports as central nodes and continuing air travel journeys as vectors.”


The Koreas

South Korea fires warning shots at North Korean vessel west of peninsula: JCS NK News


Will Germany settle for 28nm? TSMC’s presence highlights misalignment between Berlin’s semiconductor and defense policies Digitimes Asia

East Asian economies resist decoupling East Asia Forum

America, China and a Crisis of Trust Thomas Friedman, New York Times. Typical Friedman nonsense, but buried is this nugget: “A senior administration official told me that Xi told President Biden at their summit in Bali in November, in essence: I will not be the president of China who loses Taiwan. If you force my hand, there will be war. You don’t understand how important this is to the Chinese people. You’re playing with fire.”

European Disunion

The breakdown of French-German relations augurs ill for the EU FT

EU warns against unilateral steps after Poland, Hungary ban Ukrainian grain Reuters

New Not-So-Cold War

Putin hold working meeting with visiting Chinese defense minister – spokesman TASS

Russia Says Its New EW System Can ‘Kill’ Satellites At An Altitude Of 36,000 Km; Military Expert Decodes The Claims The EurAsian Times

Italy transfers some of M109 self-propelled howitzers to Ukraine Ukrainska Pravda


Richard D. Wolff – The Emerging New World Economy Brave New Europe

Timofey Bordachev: Here’s why Macron’s call to break away from US control is just meaningless posturing RT

Top 10 hedge funds made £1.5bn profit from Ukraine war food price spike The Guardian

L’affaire Leaker

The Pentagon leaks and the US media WSWS

Leaked Pentagon docs show the shot-down Chinese spy balloon may have had a feature known as ‘synthetic aperture radar’ that can see through certain materials, WaPo reports Yahoo! News

Social-Media Account Overseen by Former Navy Noncommissioned Officer Helped Spread Secrets WSJ. And not sufficiently anti-Russian to boot!!

Congress sees a rare window of opportunity to regulate Big Tech NBC News. Beware the bipartisan TikTok Trojan horse.


Sudan’s “Deep State” War Could Have Far-Reaching Geostrategic Consequences If It Continues Andrew Korybko’s Newsletter

Chinese company proposes $10bn investment in Afghan lithium reserves The Cradle

China has outclassed the US in Middle East relations The National. For example (Kevin W):

South of the Border

Peru’s coup-plotting congress has 6% approval, 91% disapproval (but full US backing) Geopolitical Economy

O Canada

Canada’s New Budget Is a Typical Liberal Road Map for Failing the Working Class Jacobin

Biden Administration

US manufacturing commitments double after Biden subsidies launched FT

Press conferences now extinct as Biden lets TikTokers do the talking The Hill


Nikki Haley’s campaign overstated initial fundraising haul CNN


Patrick Lawrence: The Disinformation Complex: An Anatomy Scheerpost

Democrats en déshabillé

The Supremes

Clarence Thomas claimed income from defunct real estate firm: report The Hill


FDA staff leaned toward rejecting Sarepta gene therapy before top official intervened STAT News

‘Crisis’ looms as 800,000 more nurses plan to exit workforce by 2027: study Beckers Hospital Review

Police State Watch

THE HIGH COST OF CHEAP PRISONS The Law and Political Economy Project

Big Brother Is Watching You Watch

Georgia National Guard Will Use Phone Location Tracking to Recruit High School Children The Intercept

Veterans Push Back Against Military Recruitment in Schools The National Network Opposing the Militarization of Youth

Imperial Collapse Watch

The puzzling geopolitics of America’s support for proposed World Bank reforms An Africanist Perspective

The IMF’s ‘Austerity Drive’ Consortium News

How China Is Breaking The Colonial Effects Of Western Lending Moon of Alabama (K Warner)

Supply Chain

FBI rounds-up former Polar execs charged with $52m fraud The Loadstar

Class Warfare

Rolling Back “Right-to-Work” in States Like Michigan Sends a Message to Anti-Union Bosses Jacobin

Kroger seeks consumer antitrust case dismissal over Albertsons’ merger Retail Insight Network

Workers nationwide protest proposed Kroger-Albertsons merger Grocery Dive

Sanitation workers strike after death at Memphis landfill WREG

The Bezzle

Trump Earned Up To $1M From NFT Sales: Filings CoinDesk

Inside the rise and fall of Kittyhawk Business Insider

Antidote du jour (via):

See yesterday’s Links and Antidote du Jour here.

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  1. Antifa

    (melody borrowed from Nikita by Sir Elton John)

    Clarence Thomas, you’re alone
    Dangling from the strings behind your puppet show
    All those vacays around the globe
    The multi-millions paid by Harlan Crow
    You’re for sale, that’s widely known
    A mercenary, a sicario
    A SCOTUS judge who’ll grasp for gold
    Who likes financial fellatio

    Clarence Thomas, you will never know
    The honor in the job you hold
    An office that you sold for revenue (there’s proof!)
    You greedy thief, you’ll never know
    All your crimes are so undignified
    We should send you to Guantanamo
    Till all your endless bribes have come to light (oh no!)
    In a cell with your money bro

    You truly have a venal heart
    You lust for power like a parasite
    You were a Judas from the start
    Opinions written by a troglodyte
    The author of enormous crimes
    Spread across some twenty silent years
    You thought you made a social climb
    You were just hanging out with racketeers

    Clarence Thomas, you will never know
    The honor in the job you hold
    An office that you sold for revenue (there’s proof!)
    You greedy thief, you’ll never know
    All your crimes are so undignified
    We should send you to Guantanamo
    Till all your endless bribes have come to light (oh no!)
    In a cell with your money bro

    (musical interlude)

    Clarence Thomas, you will never know
    Never know the honor in the job you hold
    An office that you sold for revenue
    You greedy thief, you’ll never know
    All your crimes are so undignified
    We should send you to Guantanamo
    Till all your endless bribes have come to light (oh no!)
    In a cell with your money bro

    Clarence . . .
    An office that you sold for revenue . . .

    Clarence . . .
    An office that you sold for revenue . . .

    Clarence . . .
    An office that you sold for revenue . . .

    1. Wukchumni


      Dueling doubting Thomas ditties:

      Georgia, Savannah Georgia
      A shady real estate deal (a shady real estate deal)
      Just an old sweet song about bought & paid for
      Keeps Savannah, Georgia on my mind (Savannah, Georgia on my mind)

      I said Georgia
      Savannah, Georgia
      A song of you (a song of you)
      Comes as sweet and clear
      As grease through the palms

      Other alms reach out to thee
      Other eyes smile tenderly
      Still in state tax documents I see
      The road leads back to you

      I said Georgia
      Oh Savannah, Georgia, evidence was found (evidence was found)
      Just an old sweet song about bought & paid for
      Keeps Savannah, Georgia on my mind (Savannah, Georgia on my mind)

      Other alms reach out to thee
      Other eyes smile tenderly
      Still in state tax documents I see
      The road leads back to you

      I said just an old sweet song about bought & paid for
      Keeps Savannah, Georgia on my mind

      Georgia On My Mind, by Ray Charles

      1. 430MLK

        Not sure they still do it, but the Georgia Public Television stations used to play this montage nightly at midnight. It was the last thing played before the station went dark for the night. (This current montage is more Atl-focused and people-focused. The older pics we viewed were more natural features of the state.)

        Back in our courting days, the wife and I would fall asleep to it while on our respective ends of the telephone line. Probably why I prefer the Charles version to the Willie Nelson one, which is also very good and also much played in the state.

  2. Wukchumni

    Did unicorns exists? New research traces cultural traditions to find their origins Interesting Engineering

    …and then the antidote

    Clever, that.

      1. t

        I tried to look up how someone can have enough money for 15 horses and not have noticed that they “pose” like that repeatedly all day, every day, whenever they hear or see something of interest or potentially alarming or suspect another horse has heard or seen something ….

        Poster is an artist so maybe just clickbait to draw attention to wire sculptures of birds that are very well observed.

  3. Old Sovietologist

    Newsweek predicts the date for the Ukrainian offensive as April 30. The publication bases its forecast on an analysis of the leaked American intelligence documents.

    Such forecasts are usually worth nothing but the date itself would be logical in terms of inflicting not only military damage on Russia, but also psychological damage with May 9th in mind.

  4. zagonostra

    >Patrick Lawrence: The Disinformation Complex: An Anatomy Scheerpost

    This is the most powerful, sustained rip into the Russiagate disaster I have yet read—and certainly the best work published to date on the destruction of American democracy at the hands of a ruling elite that invented (1) the figment of a disinformation crisis and (2) the frightening apparatus that now drowns us in disinformation in the name of combating it…

    Seigel makes a critical discrimination between the deep state—“unelected government functionaries who have administrative power to override the official, legal procedures of a government”—and the rise of a liberal ruling class. Although the two overlap at numerous points, this is an essential distinction if we are to understand what happened during the Russiagate years, when this class emerged as a hegemonic force…

    So the problem of disinformation is also a problem of democracy itself—specifically, that there’s too much of it. To save liberal democracy, the experts prescribed two critical steps: America must become less free and less democratic. This necessary evolution will mean shutting out the voices of certain rabble-rousers in the online crowd who have forfeited the privilege of speaking freely. It will require following the wisdom of disinformation experts. …

    Nothing much new here that I can tell, just repackaging. I think many of the same arguments were being made back in the 50’s if I recall my Robert Dahl readings correctly. From my standpoint, a reframing of the theoretical underpinnings of a “ruling elite” within a putative democratically governed society is less interesting than holding to account those ruling elites.

    Recently on a podcast former presidential candidate and member of Congress, Ron Paul, stated that JFK was “murdered by our government.” On Dec. 8, 1999, William Pepper brought to trial a wrongful death case on behalf of the King family and a Memphis jury took less than an hour to find that a MLK assassination plot included “governmental agencies.” There are too many nefarious actors still controlling the cogs in the machinery (such as the Media) of U.S. gov’t for theories of “pluralism” to be of much relevance.

    1. Robert Hahl

      Seigel’s insight is that the current disinformation crusade was not triggered because Russia exploited social media to get Trump elected, but rather because Trump did. This is nothing but an anti-populism campaign.

      1. tevhatch

        … Trump used social media to exploit first the Republican Party, then the Democrat Party to get elected…

        That’s the problem for the elite.

      2. Skip Intro

        They have to blame social media, once they can’t blame Russia, because avoiding introspection is the top priority for a political machine that lost to a clown after outspending him by a billion dollars, then nearly repeated the act.

    2. Carolinian

      The premise of the Siegel piece is that we are now in a scarier form of McCartthyism because the first version was helmed by flaky figures like Tailgunner Joe and the current by supposedly brilliant deep staters like Hillary and Obama with their Ivy League degrees.

      But that’s not really true of course. Both versions track back to the Ivy League and Wall Street class as was discussed here recently with reference to the origins of the CIA and the role of the Dulles Brothers. What’s happening now is just that earlier version revived with some changes in he mass media landscape. The players are the same–the MIC and the elite educated classes. And if this recent version is such a big propaganda success then how to account for the terrible poll ratings of Biden and the press and the degree of dissatisfaction indicated by right track/wrong track polls?

      I like Lawrence but he, like Taibbi, may be giving much to much credit to Siegel’s fears of “digital totalitarianism.” Ken Silverstein had Hillary’s number years ago when he described her as a mediocrity, not a mastermind. In our modern era it seems to be the intellectuals who “got small.”

      1. Mark Gisleson

        I’m thinking this is the world we’ve always lived in but earlier secret efforts were managed by competent villains whereas today’s authoritarians are all prime examples of the Peter Principle.

        1. Val

          Peter Principle would suggest a demonstration of competency at some prior stage.
          Biden, Fauci, Friedman, Summers, assemble your own list–competence is not the flaming hoop they have jumped through.

          1. Mildred Montana

            The scale of “competency” is scarcely without a lower limit. No matter how low that might be, everyone (including your aforementioned four) can eventually find his or her niche. In keeping with this, the following “employees” have forthwith been “reassigned”:

            Biden: Mail clerk in a Delaware incorporation office.
            Fauci: Salesman for nutritional supplements on late-night TV.
            Friedman: Writer of metaphor-laden children’s fantasy books.
            Summers: Stock-broker (more properly put, stock salesman), using his gift of baffle-gab during cold calls to dupe retail investors while he grubs for commissions.

          2. Cassandra

            It really depends on what you think they are attempting competence at… If you assume their goal is good governance and promoting the public welfare, then they are spectacularly incompetent. If you assume their true goal is merely that the wealthy shall become ever wealthier, that is a different matter.

      1. nycTerrierist

        no disrespect to Siegel’s Tablet piece and to Lawrence –
        but haven’t Aaron Mate (Max Blumenthal, Katie Halper, Jimmy Dore et al.)
        been debunking ‘Russiagate’ for the past few years?
        they’ve been ribbing it as the cult of #BluAnon

        1. jsn

          Yes, and they deserve praise.

          One must, however, appreciate when reality leaks into spaces not yet banished from the Matrix.

          Is the wired sparkling face that talks to Neo after he’s blinded what Skynet grows up to be when it outgrows it Oedipal phase?

    3. rusell1200

      I would like to have seen something on the how Q-anon fits into the picture. Certainly that would have been the story-arc (for lack of a better term) that these disinformation people would have wanted to discredit – and seem to have failed miserably.

  5. Wukchumni

    Hey, Janet
    Yes, Jay?

    I’ve got something to say
    Uh huh
    I really loved the skillful way
    You beat the FDIC to the under-insured buffet

    Oh, Jay

    The river of denial was in deep but I swam it (Janet)
    Only so many immaculate exceptions, can it (Janet)
    So please don’t bail out anyone else unless they demand it (Janet)
    I’ve one thing to say and that’s
    Dammit, Janet, I love you

    The road to ruin was long but I ran it (Janet)
    There’s inflationary pressures and you fan it (Janet)
    If there’s one fool for you then I am it (Janet)
    I’ve one thing to say and that’s
    Dammit, Janet, I love you

    Here’s a thing to prove that I’m no joker
    There’s three ways that an economy can grow
    That’s good, bad or mediocre
    Oh J-A-N-E-T I love you so

    Oh, it’s nicer gig than the last SecTres had (oh Jay)
    Now we’re engaged in battling inflaton and I’m so glad (oh Jay)
    That you’ve kept mum and you know it could get bad (oh Jay)
    I’ve one thing to say and that’s
    Jay I’m mad for you too

    Oh, Jay
    Oh, dammit
    I’m mad
    Oh, Janet
    For you

  6. digi_owl

    Peeled oranges in plastic boxes sold as sumo mandarins?!

    How did that manage to make it all the way to a offered product?!

    1. Katniss Everdeen

      It’s most likely harder to open that damn plastic box than to just peel the orange yourself.

      That is, of course, unless you happen to have your handy plastic packaging opening tool that you, as a savvy “consumer,” “consumed” for aggravatingly inconvenient convenience innovations such as these.

      No need to worry about “sustainability” though. I hear they’re innovating some plastic eating bacteria for that.

    2. JM

      There are pictures of individually wrapped bananas, with a foam tray and plastic wrap, so this doesn’t surprise me; at least they’re peeled compared to the bananas.

      We will burn the planet down for the smallest extra convenience, and some genius in a boardroom will make a killing giving it to us.

      1. digi_owl

        Ugh, now i am getting flashbacks to this meme of a product that went around some years back. Basically a lunchbox for a single banana, that was supposed to keep it fresh for longer than if just left out in the open.

      1. digi_owl

        Thanks. I have seen the company get mentioned on and off in various tech bro circles, and should have smelled the rat a long time ago.

  7. The Rev Kev

    “Leaked Pentagon docs show the shot-down Chinese spy balloon may have had a feature known as ‘synthetic aperture radar’ that can see through certain materials, WaPo reports”

    Wow! That’s amazing that. It may have had ‘synthetic aperture radar’ aboard? Fascinating. Yeah, it may be seventy year-old technology but hey, any port in the storm when you are trying to stir up a stampede. So, that balloon was shot down and retrieved about ten weeks ago. When do they show everybody what they retrieved from the Atlantic ocean floor and demonstrate where that radar would have gone and all the other parts? Will they make available a technical report too? No worries about secrecy here as these are Chinese secrets.

    1. tevhatch

      They’ll claim the Chinese secrets were stolen US secrets, so still secret, see?

      Synthetic aperture radar fits the profile. It’s used to measure water content in soil (locate archeological sites) and other “secret” things. Finding Aztec high tech equipment.

    2. Wukchumni

      The aviatricks you seek is a couple of lockers over from Ameilia’s in Federal storage facility 41-L10S.

    3. Paradan

      You guys remember that diagram of Bin Ladins mountain hideout? The one that had like a com center and ammo factory, etc. It was larger and more complex then Cheyanne Mountain. They should do a diagram like that with this balloon.

      1. Geo

        That illustration was my favorite work of fan fiction art ever. They really made the guy out to be a 60’s era Bond villain. A close second were Saddam’s mobile weapons labs. Mixing and concocting deadly pathogens in an RV bouncing along jagged desert roads seemed so plausible!!!

  8. The Rev Kev

    “A global aircraft-based wastewater genomic surveillance network for early warning of future pandemics”

    ‘We propose the development of a global aircraft-based wastewater genomic surveillance network, with the busiest international airports as central nodes and continuing air travel journeys as vectors.’

    It won’t work. I will amend that. It will partly work but to be truly effective, they would have to as a matter of priority test the wastewater from private aircraft as well. Back in 2020 it came out that the South American elites went to Europe on their holidays and returned infected. They then infected their servants who then spread it to their families and neighbours in the favelas. Under this Lancet proposal, they would have only tested the wastewater from commercial passenger flights and would have missed all those private aircraft acting as a vector for this virus.

    1. Raymond Sim

      I noticed a consistent pattern in the Sacramento and San Francisco Bay Areas of wealthy areas being apparent first adopters of new VOC’S.

    1. Ignacio

      Thank you flora. Any source bringing some sanity is welcome these days even if Craig’s sanity brings more depressing thoughts.

  9. upstater

    Norfolk Southern, PSR, etc

    Trains magazine has an understandable article about the dynamics of long, heavy poorly made up trains causing derailments. This is about the Springfield Ohio wreck of a 210 car, 18,000 ton train. The cause was initially blamed on out-of-gauge axles, but that was ruled out and train make up (according to commonly used PSR practices) was the cause:

    National Steel Car: Steel coil car wheelsets didn’t play role in Norfolk Southern derailment

    “The train was traveling on an ascending 0.6% grade with a heavier part on a 0.7% downhill grade,” the FRA said. “The weight was mostly concentrated at the head and rear ends of the train. During the accident, dynamic braking was applied only to the headend locomotive consist, while the DPUs were idle, making it function like a conventional train. The derailment happened at the sag between ascending and descending grades, with short, empty rail cars designed to ship coiled steel being the first to derail. Buff forces peaked as the downhill portion of the train ran-in, causing the derailment of cars 70-72 and the subsequent pile-up.”

    I expect pending legislation will address some of these issues. Train length and weight is too big to ignore (pun intended)

    1. cnchal

      Memo to Norfolk Southern. Precision doesn’t mean what you think it means. Stop insulting the word.

    2. John Beech

      Train length and weight are not fit purposes for legislation. The fix is remarkably easy if we stop the lawyers in Congress from enacting laws, or empowering the regulators. Instead, just free up the lawyers in private practice to sue the crap out of the railroads.

      Like in East Palestine; how does a lawsuit to the tune of $10M per person within a mile, and forced purchase of the properties at punitive prices, say $1M for a shack sound as a deterent?

      It’s my opinion it’s too cheap for these folks (the rail roads). Meaning when there is a derailment, they get away so cheaply the beancounters judge (quite rightly, by the way) that it’s cheaper to do what they do. E.g. operate trains with minimal crews, live with bearing fire sensors that are not repaired promptly, load trains without taking into proper account the terrain, plus the entire panoply of what are ultimately money-decisions that result in accidents.

      Easy fixes are usually suspect but believe me, if we make it cost them, and I mean cost them big time, then they’ll do the ‘right’ thing. Too easy? Nope!

      Why will this work? Simple, it’ll work due to a simple realignment of interest. Meaning let’s bring the corporate interest for protecting the corporate pocket into alignment with the public interest. This will work because it’ll be cheaper to operate trains more slowly and do whatever it takes to stop derailments and crashes which adversely affect the population.

      What I am saying is we merely have a mismatch between the damage and the price of restitution resulting in the railroads doing what any corporation will do, maximize profit. Remember, railroads don’t exist to move goods. They exist to make money.

      1. mrsyk

        Your idea might work if it includes mandatory hard jail time and robust clawback of earnings on RR executives.

      2. GramSci

        The railroads will factor this into the cost of doing business, and raise prices. Meanwhile, none of the profits will be directed toward building a sustainable, modern rail network. Until the personal income tax is raised to FDR-era levels motivations will not change.

      3. Michael Fiorillo

        You seem to think the US court system would allow those kind of compensatory and punitive awards. I wish I could share your confidence.

        Unless forced by large movements driving the political winds, the court system will maintain, if not increase, its default tilt oward Overclass interests.

      4. upstater

        I agree that vigorous class action with a huge awards would create disincentives to ignore public safety and environmental damage. However Norfolk Southern and the industry will spare no expense in civil litigation in this matter. Unfortunately the courts are not sympathetic to plaintiffs and deferential to corporate persons who hire top law firms. Think of the 737Max litigation as a guide.

        Consider the 2013 Lac Megantic disaster when an unmanned oil train sped down a hill, derailed and incinerated 47 people and a small downtown resulted in approximately only $338 million in damages. The CEO of the offending Montreal Maine and Atlantic railroad, Ed Burkhardt was never charged with anything, retired very comfortably and sacrificed nothing. Only underlings were criminally charged, in spite of the fact the corporation had slipshod procedures (a one man crew, no defined braking) and poorly maintained equipment.

        1. mrsyk

          “Ed Burkhardt was never charged with anything, retired very comfortably and sacrificed nothing.”
          As I see it, this is the crux of the biscuit.

      5. LY

        We need criminal charges, and without the kid gloves reserved for high status white collar criminals.
        IANAL (I am not a lawyer), but I would think criminal negligence, recklessness, and up to manslaughter charges are appropriate for the people who are in charge and benefit from the management systems that promote these accidents.

        Again, IANAL, but is there a corporate equivalent of racketeering laws to penetrate the mechanisms that isolate liability such as holding companies, contractors, offshoring, outsourcing, etc.? These deterrence really needs to go all the way to the top of the food chain.

  10. flora

    an aside: I see some words written or spoken more often now in a sort of sneering way that I never expected these words to be so used. Words like rights, freedom, democracy, free speech, 1st Amendment, (Ok, those last 2 are two words). I think anyone who sneers at the 1st Amendment or any of the Bill of Rights by sneering “muh rights” is giving aid to those pushing for the RESTRICT Act to pass. My 2 cents.

    1. Daniil Adamov

      A familiar development here in Russia, and probably not just here. Those words are often discredited by those who take them up. The resulting contempt for rights etc. makes it easier for others to remove or restrict them, since genuine criticism of such efforts becomes easy for the public to overlook as just more of that idiocy or hypocrisy. Come to think of it, the same goes for human rights, rules-based orders, etc. as practiced by the US.

      1. flora

        “If all that Americans want is security, they can go to prison. They’ll have enough to eat, a bed and a roof over their heads. But if an American wants to preserve his dignity and his equality as a human being, he must not bow his neck to any dictatorial government.”
        — Dwight D. Eisenhower, 1949

        1. The Rev Kev

          2023 – Dwight D. Eisenhower gets cancelled for wrongthink and tendencies of dissidence. Suspected of being a Russian sympathizer due to his constant contacts with Russians in the mid-40s.

          1. Daniil Adamov

            “must not bow his neck to any dictatorial government” is a dead give-away, really. That’s the kind of thing a Trumpkin would say! An anti-vax gun-loving Ukraine-hating disinformation-peddling Trumpkin at that.

            1. flora

              Eisenhower was the Allied Commander in Europe during WWII. He had army film makers go into the liberated concentration camps and film everything they saw. no narration, no sound. He wanted it filmed because he didn’t think anyone would believe what was done, and he wanted it believed and not forgotten. The films are still available.

              He had a certain then-recently destroyed dictatorial govt in mind when he was speaking in 1949.

              1. flora

                What happened in that other country did not happen all at once. It was a gradual process. I think that was Eisenhower’s warning in the 1949 speech.

          2. Ignacio

            Teixeira should be taken to the high temples at Tikal and be sacrificed there in public, as in Mayan times, to strengthen these post-modern Rights and Values we have gained recently.

          3. CarlH

            He should be canceled for his murderous foreign policy and for letting the Dulles Brothers run amoc.

            1. Roland

              “Murderous” foreign policy?

              1. Wound down Korean War.

              2. Didn’t intervene in Hungary.

              3. Worked with USSR to get UK, Fr, & Isr out of Egypt in 1956.

              When you look at the opportunities to wage war, and the pressures on him to take a more belligerent line, I think Eisenhower did not too badly.

              Was he involved in imperialistic evils? Subversion, sabotage, assassination? Yes. But so has every other American president since the beginning of the 20th cent. Eisenhower is no worse than any of the post-WWII presidents, and certainly cleaner than any of post-Cold War presidents.

              What I think was Eisenhower’s worst and most fateful decision, at least in tertrospect, was the creation of the Interstate highway system. Even in the 1950’s there were urbanists warning of the long-term consequences of automobile-driven development. But the impact on things like world climate were scarcely understood at the time. And the policy was very popular, indeed widely loved. Nevertheless, more blame lies with those who failed to alter policy in the generations that followed.

        2. timbers

          Dwight said “he/his”. That’s micro-aggression against all of us who are they/them. His quote should either be re-written to reflect “modern values” or expunged.

          1. JEHR

            Why don’t you just make up your own pronouns rather than trying to fit the present pronouns to a new agent? E.g.: si/sine tw/wine, etc.


            And Dr Moore says its easy for people to accept these pronouns into their everyday speech because they are so commonly used in other forms of language.

            She also thinks this is why other gender-neutral pronouns like ze pronounced zee and its variations: zir, zem, and zeir, have not caught on in everyday language.

            “I think the reason [gender neutral pronouns] have come about is because they have existed previously to not specify gender,” she says.

            “It has the advantage of already being part of grammar – there have been attempts to make new non binary pronouns, but they haven’t been as successful because they’re not already embedded in grammar.”

        3. Mildred Montana

          Eisenhower’s presidency was checkered to say the least. Although he accomplished some good things on the domestic front and he was fiscally conservative, he was a dedicated “commy” fighter.

          He supported France in the early days of the Vietnam war and after that loss, the new state of South Vietnam against that of the North. His administration orchestrated the military coups in Iran and Guatemala which deposed democratically-elected governments at the cost of many lives. He approved the Bay of Pigs invasion but left it to Kennedy to suffer the embarrassment of that fiasco.

          While he was in office Eisenhower was a Cold War zealot. Only upon leaving it in 1961 did he issue his famous warning about the potential dangers of a growing MIC in his farewell address.

          Smart move Ike because, although you did nothing about it when you could, most people will remember you only by those few self-exculpatory sentences which were essentially a personal hand-washing.

          1. tevhatch

            That famous speech was also a reaction to being caught / surprised over Sputnik, his attempt to explain away underfunding what would be NASA, because the fly boys were far more interested in the jobs that staffing all those bomber fleets would create. Ike was facing pressures from General Curtis LeMay and his MIC creatures in Congress and Industry to not develop missiles.

            Andrei Martinov discusses in his book Losing Military Supremacy how Naval Aviation (labor union, sarc) fought Admiral Zumwalt on the development of cruise missiles, then confined the fight to limiting anti-shipping cruise missiles to less than 100 km for ages.

          2. S.D., M.D.

            Given what happened to Kennedy once he was seen as a threat to the deep state, maybe it was a pretty smart move.
            Remind me which president since then has said even that much?

                1. pretzelattack

                  i didnt say he was offed for fun. could have been the mafia, or the cubans, or the fbi. but the warmonger who loved joe mccarthy and lied about a missile gap, and took the world to the brink of nuclear war over yet another US attempt to “contain” the USSR was not a threat to the deep state.

                  1. tevhatch

                    It’s most likely he was a threat to the Rockefeller’s move on the gold fields in Papua New Guinea, but pissing on a lot of shoes made it relatively easy. Him and Dag Hammarskjöl

          3. Tommy S

            Yes, well said. He also was in line with a first strike policy, as Ellsberg details in Doomsday Machine. That’s serious. When a large amount of American troops were under threat, it meant that both China and USSR would be hit with nuclear weapons.

          4. elissa3

            Ike’s Chance for Peace/Cross of Iron speech in 1953 showed his good instincts about 8 years before the MIC farewell speech (which was originally MICC, with “Congressional” in the draft deleted from the final). Unfortunately, he let the Dulles boys run wild in the interim. Or was Ike bad deep down? Or did he get the memo that JFK dismissed? It was early days, and I think the turning point in the evolution of the Empire. Sad.

  11. Katniss Everdeen

    RE: High risk of autoimmune diseases after COVID-19 Nature (Mark N)

    Owing to the inherent nature of their design (retrospective cohort), these two studies do not prove a causal link between SARS-CoV-2 and the development of autoimmune diseases; however, based on the temporal association with a history of COVID-19, they provide compelling and reliable evidence that SARS-CoV-2 infection is linked to a substantially increased risk of developing diverse new-onset autoimmune diseases after the acute phase of SARS-CoV-2 infection.

    So, correlation is definitely NOT causation unless you really, really need it to be in order to make your point.

    Post hoc ergo propter hoc.

    1. Verifyfirst

      Post hoc ergo propter hoc.

      Yes, as the tobacco companies said for decades…..

      Seriously though, at this point in Covid (three years), do you expect RCT’s? (and will you volunteer to be infected?).

      There have been many many studies of various impacts in the body, viral persistence, etc. especially in long covid (or are you saying that doesn’t exist either?). Of course much is still unknown.

      Here is one study where they had data from before infection to compare against (there are others but I’m too lazy to go find them for you).

      “To investigate the potential long-term cardiovascular effects of having COVID-19, researchers looked at data from national health care databases curated by the US Department of Veteran Affairs (VA). The information was split into three separate groups: people who had been diagnosed with COVID-19 (153,760 individuals), people who did not catch the virus (5,637,647 individuals), and people whose data was collected pre-pandemic (5,859,411 individuals).

      Across the board, COVID-19 survivors were at an increased risk for cardiovascular diseases across several categories, including cerebral vascular disorders, dysrhythmia, inflammatory heart disease, ischemic heart disease, thrombotic disorders, and other cardiac disorders. More specifically, being diagnosed with COVID-19 increased a person’s risk of heart attack by 63%, stroke by 52%, and heart failure by 72% in a 12-month period, compared to those without the illness.”

      There are limits to this study, of course. But the directionality of this and hundreds or thousands of other studies seems to point to an illness to be concerned about, especially since it is so easy to catch. Even with massive undercounting, it is the third leading cause of death in US at the moment? More than car crashes, breast cancer and stroke, combined.

      1. Katniss Everdeen

        Seriously though, at this point in Covid (three years), do you expect RCT’s?


        And for starters, I’d like to know the standardized parameters for the definition of “being diagnosed with covid.”

        A PCR test at 40 cycles of amplification? A “home” test, notorious for false positives as well as false negatives?

        After 3 years of garbage in, garbage out, enough is enough already.

        1. Objective Ace

          And for starters, I’d like to know the standardized parameters for the definition of “being diagnosed with covid.”

          A PCR test at 40 cycles of amplification? A “home” test, notorious for false positives as well as false negatives?

          What exactly is your concern? Unless your theoryzing that having Covid actually makes you less likely to have a heart attack — increased noise (which is what measurement errors create) doesnt change the conclusion. All it does is increase the sample size required to generate the conclusion.

          If that — measurement errors — were the case, the results are even more terryfing. In the absence of measurement errors the conclusion would have been even more stark

    2. Mikel

      “…In general, autoimmune and inflammatory pathologies have been linked to various infectious diseases, including COVID-19.
      Therefore, most of the autoimmune conditions listed in these articles are not specific for COVID-19. But an important aspect of COVID-19 is a notable increase in the overall incidence and range of autoimmune conditions in individuals after infection..”

      Important (I think) to highlight the issues that already exist with endemic viruses, as people refuse to think about the ongoing importance of air filtration and ventilation.

      And one of the studies used unvaccinated people. This is key.
      As many have been screaming: it was always going to be important to have a significant sized control group with the worldwide experiment going on with the therapeutics.
      It was a major reason why the shot mandates were actually anti-science.

  12. Raymond Sim

    When I saw the big solar panels I just assumed The Balloon was likely toting a synthetic aperture radar. I would imagine most anyone who’s ever heard of synthetic aperture radar (i.e. anyone who’s read ‘Aviation Week’ in the past 40 years) had the same thought. It did not occur to me that they were using it as x-ray specs.

    I remember thermal imaging getting the same “It sees through walls.” media treatment.

    But I was under the impression that the navy fished the wreckage out of the drink. Don’t they know exactly what it was hauling?

    1. cfraenkel

      “It sees through walls” brought to you by the fine folks who supplied the 6 man team, diving bell, and all their equipment on a sporting yacht.

      They’re just making #$%* up at this point.

  13. Katniss Everdeen

    RE: @SenGillibrand on Sen. Dianne Feinstein

    According to US News:

    Since a February shingles diagnosis, the 89-year-old California Democrat has missed more than 50 votes and prevented the Senate from confirming judicial appointments.

    Feinstein has asked to be “temporarily” replaced on the judiciary committee so as not to further delay the committee’s work, which includes approval of judicial appointments, and “likely quell” calls for her resignation.

    The problem is that democrats need GOP consent to replace her, and they have no incentive to give it since her absence is holding up those biden regime judicial appointments.

    Briahna Joy Gray was quite exercised over this on Rising the other day. She likened it to RBG’s hubristic refusal to resign from the supreme court, despite serious health concerns, during the obama admin, resulting in her replacement by a conservative Trump appointee.

    Gray also decried the “toxic feminism” of female lawmakers like pelosi and gillibrand who are screeching about “misogyny” in response to calls for feinstein to step down, with such seemingly important issues at stake.

    Interesting stuff that should undoubtedly be more extensively “reported.” (Briahna Joy Gray, 8+ minute video)

    1. Carolinian

      Some of us are also forlornly hoping that Biden will step down due to (mental) health issues. Maybe the downside of the “politics of self” is that trogs only exit feet first. After all they represent not just themselves but a category.

      MLK wanted colorblind. Could be time to also champion genderblind. Or it could be all just an excuse since we have even more problems with the male segment of the gerontocracy. New Boomer motto: don’t trust anyone over eighty?

        1. Carolinian

          “not by the color of their skin but the content of their character”

          The above is of course his quote on judging–the thing that “justice” is all about. I’m not sure what “color just” means. Does the justice vary by color? If you mean color equal (and therefore blind) then yes.

          1. ForFawkesSakes

            Dr. King was launching The Poor People’s Campaign when he was assassinated. It could have changed America as it was to focus on economic justice, meant to go beyond race lines.

            1. flora

              Yep. All poor people,Blacks and Whites and everyone working together on shared economic issues instead of fighting each other.

          2. Objective Ace

            While his stance changed somewhat over his life – he eventually settled on colorblindness when judging one’s character, but not necessarily colorblind when it comes to celebrating one’s culture and identity

    2. The Rev Kev

      Just came across the following tweet-

      ‘Defund Ukraine
      Was it was too much to ask Bernie to not go on Jen Psaki’s show to defend Dianne Feinstein’

      Had to check it out and yes, there is a Jen Psaki’s show and yes, Bernie was out there defending Feinstein- (13:44 mins) – about the 2:30 mark on.

  14. Lexx

    ‘Georgia National Guard Will Use Phone Location Tracking to Recruit High School Children’ – The Intercept

    ‘The documents note that “TikTok is banned for official DOD use (to include advertising),” owing to allegations that the app is a manipulative, dangerous conduit for hypothetical Chinese government propaganda.’

    LOL… aren’t enemies of The Empire useful? The irony is strong with this one.

    The inefficiencies of geofencing appear to be both bug and feature.

    1. Otis B Driftwood

      Jen Briney’s Congressional Dish latest is about the TikTok hearings. Among other things, lawmakers don’t seem to like the fact that TikTok won’t cooperate with the US security state like Facebook and Twitter pre-musk.

      Briney deserves a wider audience.

  15. The Rev Kev

    “No asteroid impacts needed: Newborn Earth made its own water, study suggests”

    Always figured that that theory of the Earth’s water coming from asteroid impacts sounded kinda hoaky. The sheer quantity of water on Earth made that theory kinda suspect. But having the water locked inside asteroids being chemically different from the water on Earth kinda seals the deal to knock off that old theory.

  16. Mikel

    “The only people who don’t want peace in the Middle East are the lizard people in DC..”

    I used to be skeptical of all the lizard/repitilian people stories.
    Then I read about plans on making insects a bigger part of diets.

      1. Daniil Adamov

        Wouldn’t they want more left for themselves, or is the plan to only feed the less tasty insects to the masses?

  17. The Rev Kev

    “Opinion | America, China and a Crisis of Trust”

    ‘As for China, it can tell itself all it wants that it has not taken a U-turn in recent years. But no one is buying it. China will never realize its full potential — in a hyper-connected, digitized, deep, dual-use, semiconductor-powered world — unless it understands that establishing and maintaining trust is now the single most important competitive advantage any country or company can have. And Beijing is failing in that endeavor.’

    He still doesn’t get it. They trust China in Russia. And the Saudis and Iranians trust them. Brazil trusts them. Come to think of it, more and more of the Global South trusts China. Well, let’s just say that they trust China far more than they do the west, mostly through past experiences. I may be wrong but I think that like Josep Borrell, Thomas L. Friedman tends to think of the countries outside of the Collective West as just being a jungle.

    1. cfraenkel

      That’s what makes the Friedman bit so funny (?), it’s like he’s looking in a mirror and doesn’t realize it.

      1. NotTimothyGeithner

        He’s a racist. That’s it. Exceptions are allowed, but whole countries competing with the US or Germany is simply absurd for his ilk.

    2. Jeremy Grimm

      The nugget about what Xi told President Biden, noted with this link most bothers me. As for Thomas Friedman and his insights …

  18. Carolinian

    New Turley on how DeSantis may be about to bring the hammer down on Disney and has the legal tools to do so.

    There was a series in the LAT not too long ago about how Disney also has a cozy and questionable relationship with the government of Anaheim where Disneyland is located. Sounds like in Florida at least cozy no more. And whatever one thinks of DeSantis–he doesn’t seem to be much of a politician–he does a refreshing willingness to play hardball with his opponents. The opponent in this case is a–these days–very much soulless corporation.

      1. Carolinian

        I’m so old I can remember when a kind of blanket opposition to big corporations was considered lefty. Ralph Nader with his anti-corporate theme was a hero.

        Post Powell Memo (and Nader) the big corps seem to have decided they can neutralize their class opponents via woke. But it turns out the only opponents they really have left are those annoying deplorables with their paranoia about their kids.

        Americans are not very political or ideological but messing with kids is poor strategy IMO.

        1. Henry Moon Pie

          Or put another way, the deplorables have had their prosperity taken away. Now they’re being told they must change their beliefs.

          Yeah, that’s a great political strategy. Deliver it with a wagging finger is even better.

          1. orlbucfan

            Long time Floridian here. No fan of the Tragic Kingdom, but DeSantis is a stupid FRightwingnut of the highest order. I look forward to him getting crushed by the national spotlight when he attempts his POTUS run.

    1. Jorge

      Yeah, my ex used to work in the Disney offices inside Anaheim City Hall. Yes, really.

      The relationship of Disney to FL locals was unique: DisneyWorld is a separate county, with one landholder, and the right to vote assigned to land ownership. Yes, DW is its own local government! I do truly salute DeSantis for attempting to trash this obscene arrangement, but I don’t think he will succeed.

  19. The Rev Kev

    “The breakdown of French-German relations augurs ill for the EU’

    Forget the supposed France-India breakdown. The real breakdown will be between the western/central EU countries and the eastern EU countries. For some reason the former block countries do not look kindly on that later block’s ideas of getting everybody into a shooting war with a nuclear-armed superpower.

  20. Mikel

    Bloomberg: “First Republic Worked Hard to Woo Rich Clients. It Was the Bank’s Undoing”

    The Chapelle Show used to have a skit called, “When Keeping It Real Goes Wrong.”
    This is just a bit like “When Keeping the Cantillon Effect Goes Wrong.”

    “…Wealthy homebuyers and property investors with high incomes and sterling credit scores could get a mortgage from First Republic Bank with a rock-bottom rate for several years. Better yet, they didn’t have to start repaying the principal for a decade.

    Across Manhattan, the San Francisco Bay area and Southern California, those terms attracted legions of wealthy clients — including executives from other banks — as interest rates sank during the pandemic. The loans left borrowers with more cash to invest and spend than if they financed their properties with more conventional mortgages. Demand was so strong that it helped First Republic double its assets in four years, while deposits surged.

    Now, it’s all looking like a colossal mistake…”

    “…The regional bank crisis has mostly focused on lenders’ underwater bond holdings headed into a messy earnings season. Those contributed to the collapses of Silicon Valley Bank and Silvergate Capital Corp. last month after surges in withdrawals forced both firms to sell the securities at losses.

    But at First Republic, which has lost almost 90% of its market value this year, such investments are only a piece of the issue. A much bigger challenge is its stockpile of low-interest loans, many of them to people who still have years to start paying them down. The mortgages are performing well, but their low rates and delayed repayments hurt their value.

    The firm is set to report first-quarter results April 24 with analysts estimating it will post a $40 billion drop in deposits.

    The loans have hampered efforts to find investors or a stronger lender to acquire the company, which is now leaning on $30 billion deposited by larger banks. The debt portfolio is one of the primary reasons several would-be rescuers aren’t willing to pony up cash, according to people with knowledge of their thinking, who asked not to be named discussing confidential deliberations.

    The mortgages also make a government-backed deal all the more politically fraught: How eager will regulators or Wall Street’s critics in Congress be to aid a bank that hurt itself with a product tailored to rich clients?”

    No doubt the establishment is prepared to send the economy through all kinds of contortions to bail out this mess. And commericial real estate loans are playing a leading role.

    1. griffen

      I kept the TV set on mute while he was on the CNBC channel this morning. While surely the content of his messaging should be heard, I can’t imagine it’s that much different today vs the last time I read about the debt ceiling two-step. The more interesting interview I watched was with Ryan Reynolds on the set, Canada has exported a few real gems.

      Brings to mind the wrestling from a bygone era, the days of Roddy Piper and Hulk Hogan. Let’s put them (Kevin, Joey from Scranton) into a steel cage and include a folding metal chair, and get r done !

  21. Susan the other

    Mmmm. Let’s all observe a moment of silence to contemplate the great god Change.

    1. Henry Moon Pie

      From Octavia Butler’s dystopic Parable of the Sower:

      All that you touch
      You Change.

      All that you Change
      Changes you.

      The only lasting truth
      Is Change.

      Is Change.

    1. griffen

      May we find it all a temporary delay, and that technology is not conspiring (yet again) against our interest to disrupt our harmonious news cycle.

      Damn you, internet gremlins. Damn you to hell!

    2. Randall Flagg

      We can only hope and send our best wishes it’s only a temporary snafu. ( I know what the acronym stands for LOL)…

    3. The Rev Kev

      Lambert has suffered a lot of problems with his computer gear lately so hope that this is not more of the same.

    1. IM Doc

      Lord Have Mercy

      I worked as a waiter all through college and medical school. I also worked odd jobs here and there. I did this in an era when a student could indeed leave debt free at the end which is exactly what I did. My tuition for medical school was less than a hundred dollars a semester. My closet of an apartment was about 125 a month, etc etc. I ate lots of leftovers from the restaurant – and the rest was stuff like beans and cornbread. I had my apartment where I could walk to school and walk to the restaurant.

      I was horrified when I had a recent reunion to note that the courtyard where we hung out in medical school had been turned into a huge fitness spa, complete with a lazy river pool and hot tubs everywhere.

      The “amenities” on the campus were absolutely unbelievable.

      The last four medical students I have had on my rotations, all 4th years graduating in the next few weeks, have all gone into more than 500K in debt in just medical school alone.

      This is insane. Not only have our higher education facilities lost their marbles – but so have the parents and students……A lazy river and a gym full of hot tubs? Expresso bars conveniently located outside each lecture hall?

      We no longer live in a serious country.

      1. Jason Boxman

        And then no one can afford to go into primary care, and we so desperately need more of these generalists, although rural America is losing all it’s hospitals as well. It’s a third world country. Hollowed out for financial engineering.

        1. Carla

          IIRC, Trump had a name for such countries. Methinks he wasn’t cognizant of a little phenomenon called projection.

      2. Henry Moon Pie

        They’re acculturating them. How are you going to produce greedy doctors unless you first acquaint them with luxury? Now it’s pretty likely that even a lot of those indebted students come from well-off families and haven’t lacked for much, but then they expect not to lack those “necessities” even while attending school. So either way, institutions feel they’d better pamper them.

        I’m beginning to see that in all our career tracks, from the time people are in school up through the prime of their working lives, people are being trained to be ruthless at the workplace, obsessed with conspicuous consumption, dismissive of ethical and moral concerns, in other words, sociopathic. The medical industry is just one example. The route through the business schools to the banks and consulting firms is another. The path through the law schools to Sullivan & Cromwell or Covington & Burling is another.

        I had experiences similar to yours back in the 70s when I was in school, the kind that keep you grounded in reality. The system certainly had those aspects back then, but things were not nearly so seductive and efficient. Changes in technology and “advances” in the knowledge of human psychology have made sure of that.

        We’re furiously making worse an already bad system led by people incapable of real leadership who become more sociopathic with each succeeding generation. My generation has already been so bad the system may not survive much longer. That may be a good thing.

        This is what I’m trying to say. The next Lloyd Blankfein will be worse. The next Barack Obama will be worse. Not because they will have started out as worse people, but because this insane system of ours is getting better and better at making people worse.

        1. JBird4049

          Even if you can keep yourself in the real, and be extremely frugal, the cost of some degrees are unavoidable especially if you try for even a modestly prestigious school; with the growing concentration of wealth limiting opportunities, it is often more important that you get a degree from the “right” schools, like one of the Ivies or Harvard, than having a good education from a good college. Those schools know this and charge accordingly.

          1. Henry Moon Pie

            True enough. But I also learned standing in the college registration line my freshman year with a high-school classmate who was the son of a wealthy banker that rich people are not reluctant to borrow interest-free money. Ed loans can be paid off early with no pre-payment penalties, making them free money while you’re a student.

      3. ArcadiaMommy

        You should see what private high school is like these days. I took my uncle who is an assistant dean at a private liberal arts college to campus and he was amazed at the amenities, classes, sports, clubs and other support the kids have.

        This is catholic school, half the cost of the non denominational private school down the street.

        Kids and parents get used to this as a baseline.

      4. digi_owl

        And likely this is spreading to the rest of the western world, in order tro try to retain some students.

  22. some guy

    America, China and a Crisis of Trust . . .

    A serious China-America war would certainly accelerate the decay and delamination of America in the medium-to-long term, whatever Pyrrhic cardboard-replica victory America might eke out in the short term.
    Since anyone can see this, i wonder what motivates the American policy-makers and drivers and connivers who try to engineer a War Situation between China and America.

    And my memory circles back to a David Emory ‘ For The Record’ Radiocast I heard years ago on our Student Radio Station. The episode, whose name I forget, advanced the thesis that the International Fascists recognized that their Nazi Germany would lose the war. They recognized it in 1941-42. So they made quiet arrangements to move serious money and thousands of fascists to safe havens for re-use after Germany lost the war. They regard the loss of WWII as having lost a battle and not the long war.
    They hate the Consitutional American Republic for having defeated them for a time and delayed their plans for World Fascism. They have infiltrated every level of American government and society they can and have been working to destroy America from within to remove it as an obstacle to World Fascism and also to get revenge on The American Contsitutional Republic for having helped the Allied Side win World War II ( or World Battle II) as the Global Fascist International sees it.

    Meanwhile, the Lords of Brussels want to turn EUrope into a new Holy EUroman Empire.

    1. chris

      A serious US-Chinese conflict would destroy the US. We’d have no medicine, no spare parts, no Amazon, no rare earths, no printing for books and other materials, no clothes, and no big iron for any of the heavy manufacturing that still does exist in the US. We lost that battle a long time ago. Absent building up our manufacturing capacity and skill set over the next 20 years, all China has to do is stop selling to us. It won’t matter whether we have to go cold turkey because we can’t get the stuff, or we experience another “Putin price hike” and have to pay triple the price through intermediaries. It will break the US. The people who keep fantasizing about a war with China are hopelessly insane.

      1. spud

        we did not lose the war for manufacturing. what happened was that we were sold out by bill clinton with the stroke of a pen. markets are simply a race to the bottom, so it was easy to predict this outcome, as i did in 1993.

        1. Jorge

          It had already started in the 1980s in the tech sector.

          I believe that a core driver was that we did not want to bear the pollution costs, so we cheerfully exported the factories and bought the doodads with the almighty dollar.

          1. digi_owl

            Environmental costs, wages, and the shortfall on the workers side of the ledger gets compensated for with cheap credit cards etc.

      2. digi_owl

        There is one defining characteristic of the PMC that have noticed, and that is their complete ignorance of logistics.

        I do wonder if it is a side effect of the rise of Amazon, and how they will deliver anything to your door with a single click year round.

      3. VietnamVet

        This delusion is even greater than “Ukraine will retake Crimea this summer”. The Western Elite do deep down know in their subconscious that if they are no longer top dog, the fallen hegemon, hording billions of hyper-inflating US dollars that are no longer the global reserve currency that they will be worthless. China becomes the sole industrial civilization left. Peventing this is well worth risking a global nuclear war for them, but not for the rest of us.

    1. davejustdave

      Well, it might be – in D.C. it is being observed as Emancipation Day, which is the reason Tax Day is tomorrow instead of today.

    2. MaryLand

      I hope it’s just an extra Easter Monday holiday for Lambert and that he is ok. With all he does it is understandable to take Mondays off. Could be good for self care.

    3. LawnDart

      I’m thinking that the gremlins may have bit him in the butt– they seem to have been acting-up recently.

    4. Another Scott

      Today is Patriot’s Day in Massachusetts and Maine and is a day off for governments and many private organizations.

      1. NotTimothyGeithner

        I grew up in Virginia, but I’ve always been annoyed patriots day and evacuation day aren’t national holidays. I HAD to work this morning instead of watching the Sox. Still angry.

      2. NotTimothyGeithner

        I sat in the John Hancock bleachers some years ago for the Boston Marathon. It was a blast.

    1. Mikel

      ‘it’s not for a company to decide’

      Wherever the profits flow to that is where the accountability and responsibility lies.

      They can’t wait to automate “the bezzle” and blame it on Hal 9000.
      Wake up.

  23. Late Introvert

    re: Recruiting in High Schools

    My daughter got a text from a recruiter (she’s a senior in high school). Luckily, the school doesn’t know her phone number, and it came to my phone. I replied Family Blog You! and he acted taken aback by that, replying OK you don’t have to be rude. I texted he was a creep texting my minor daughter and that his job was to destroy young people’s lives. He didn’t like that, needless to say. I didn’t read his reply but I saw the 1st line: #1 IT’S MY JOB.

    Ya, it sure is, you creeps.

    1. Henry Moon Pie

      Beware of exposing your true feelings to people in uniforms:

      I went over to the sergeant and said, “Sergeant, you got a lot a damn gall to
      ask me if I’ve rehabilitated myself. I mean, I mean, I mean that just, I’m
      sittin’ here on the bench, I mean I’m sittin here on the Group W bench
      ’cause you want to know if I’m moral enough join the army, burn women,
      kids, houses and villages after bein’ a litterbug.” He looked at me and
      said, “Kid, we don’t like your kind, and we’re gonna send your fingerprints
      off to Washington.

    2. rowlf

      I get text messages from recruiters for my sons who recently graduated from high school. Fortunately my sons have asthma and I ask the recruiter to mark that. I cut the recruiters some slack as a cousin had the same position for a while and these people are just doing their jobs.

      Whenever possible I try to get potential recruits to meet with quiet veterans before making a decision. I live in an area that used to have a good draw for recruitment and the general attitude now is “Pass me by”.

  24. Henry Moon Pie

    Ian Welsh has an interesting post up followed by interesting comments about the possibility of civil war in the U. S. He correctly points out that the Full Faith and Credit Clause of the Constitution is being undermined by Red state efforts to prevent citizens from obtaining banned treatments in Blue states countered by Blue state efforts to invalidate the reach of Red state laws in Blue states. Welsh points out pre-Civil War legal parallels.

    Interesting comments follow by familiar screen names and include a link to Peter Turchin’s ideas about our declining “social resilience.” Turchin predicted a rough decade ahead for America because of this back in 2010.

    1. flora

      There will not be a civil war as one usually thinks of war. I believe the new model is 5th generation warfare.

      Along those lines, Denninger has an interesting article today. I recommend reading the linked newspaper article from The Tennessean at the top of his article. The story is just old enough you can compare what it reports and what the national MSM blew it up into. It’s a good starting point for the rest of Denninger’s argument about “argument.” (more properly: rhetoric and its uses and misuses.)

      1. Henry Moon Pie

        That was a nice dissection. I was lucky enough to have a high school teacher who taught us those rules using Hayakawa’s Language in Thought and Action and a game called “Propaganda.” It was a useful inoculation.

        I had two thoughts as that story first appeared:

        1) The Republicans really walked into this one.

        2) Distract from Bakhmut and later from the substance of the leaks.

        With banks on the brink, the offensive not looking so great, China messing up our wars and Joe’s deterioration, we’re going to see distraction after distraction.

      2. Daryl

        Comparisons to the fall of the Roman Republic are pretty played out… but I can’t help but notice some similarities here. Specifically, one side gets power, proscribes the other, other side takes back power and retaliates in kind, in the process destroying whatever sort of restraints keep such a system stable. And ensuring that only extremists and opportunists survive.

        The US has an interesting, added angle of the massive deep state that currently is vaguely aligned with the D party but in reality is primarily interested in continuing to suck up money and power regardless of the social ideology that dominates.

        So we’re living with the apocryphal curse “may you live in interesting times” playing out in front of us. Good luck to everyone.

      3. Bugs

        Well, it would probably be less lethal than a war with Russia and/or China. I’m planting lots of popcorn in my little corner of Normandy this year. Hope it doesn’t pop on the stalk.

  25. Insouciant Iowan

    I deeply appreciate the thought, research, and energy reflected in Jacob Siegel’s well-written essay “A Guide to Understanding the Hoax of the Century
    Thirteen ways of looking at disinformation.” He included many details about which I knew not. I also found much that jibed with my own conclusions arrived at independently. This helped me feel less crazy.
    That said, I was left wondering why he did not include in his analysis efforts to sway the 2016 presidential election in Trumps’ favor by Israelis.”Throughout the summer and into the fall of 2016, Israel massively and illegally interfered in the U.S. presidential election.” [James Bamford, Spyfail, p. 410]
    Perhaps he is unaware of such interference, or he knows of the allegation and disagrees with it, or intends this interference by Israelis as a topic for a future essay. I look forward to reading it.
    Siegel has given us a thoughtful and illuminating, if incomplete, assay of the current regime.

  26. Willow

    An example of why the West struggles to bring the Global South onboard go no further than NAFO. By having a dog as its mascot/meme immediately puts off all Muslim countries. NAFO reinforces the idea that Ukraine is a (colonial) white man’s war. That NAFO was created in this way just shows how narrow the mindset in the West is and that broader impacts are ignored.

  27. Daryl

    > ‘Crisis’ looms as 800,000 more nurses plan to exit workforce by 2027: study Beckers Hospital Review

    Let me guess, they’ve tried everything… except paying them more. And making a safe workplace environment. But other than that, everything!

    Housing is also a nightmare in a lot of the places the increasingly consolidated hospitals are located.

  28. Jessica

    If JFK was executed for lack of fealty to the deep state, it was because he changed after the Cuban Missile Crisis. He may have gotten the US into the crisis, but he was also the one who refused the military’s calls for a nuclear first strike. The speech he gave at American University in 1963 fully acknowledging the sacrifices and suffering of the Soviets during WW2, his refusal to greenlight the racist, religionist murder of 500,000 to 2,000,000 Indonesians, his hesitation about Vietnam, his playing footsie with Khruschev all raised doubts about his fealty to the deep state.
    Also, he had of course most definitely already pissed off Dulles for refusing to be forced into a war on Cuba by the (pretty much planned) failure of the Bay of Pigs invasion, then firing Dulles.
    The earlier McCarthyite JFK and the missile gap JFK was a good friend of the deep state. Coming within a hair’s width of becoming the largest murderer in human history seems to have sobered him up. His brother RFK too. RFK was also deeply affected by the murder of his brother. Similar to how FDR was morally changed for the better by his polio.

    1. Carolinian

      Seymour Hersh says that both brothers were eager to have Castro killed and pushed the CIA to do so despite the agency’s reluctance. He claims his IC insiders told him this.

      Oswald had both Cuban and Soviet connections and very likely a motive to attack. Isn’t that just as good an explanation as the far fetched notion that the spooks would plot to kill an American president and expect to get away with it? If you read a history of the CIA and especially the early years it’s as much a history of bumbling as successful overthrow of unwanted governments. I find the CIA/Kennedy CT more than a stretch although they may very well have known a lot more about what really happened than they wanted to admit.

      Also bear in mind that the Vietnam escalation had as much to do with holdover “best and the brightest” Kennedy apparatchiks as with Lyndon’s neurotic desire for war president glory. Meanwhile the other side of the aisle was eager to “blow the treetops off.” Assumptions about what might have been are just that.

      1. flora

        Hersh is repeating a CIA delivered self-justification story. I read that Hersh article and was puzzled by it.

      2. tevhatch

        Seymour’s one source for this claim was a CIA man ( I can’t recall the name right now) with a huge vendetta against the Kennedy family, that his bias lined up with Hersh probably accounts for why Hersh didn’t dig further. I on the other hand find the claim that of agency’s reluctance to carry out assassinations flies in the face of the CIA’s history, perhaps a weak sauce to excuse their failure (or more pertinent, Seymour’s source failure) to deliver.

        1. digi_owl

          CIA was even supposedly considering sending Castro a box of explosive cigars, like something straight out of Looney Tunes.

        2. Carolinian

          Well let’s say it was the CIA’s plan to kill Castro. Are you saying that they did this without the president’s approval? Or rather that there was no such attempt? Whether they were reluctant is just anecdotal–not the key point.

          And if there was such an attempt and Castro and others knew about it then that could have something to do with the Kennedy assassination.

          It’s like if we go around blowing up Nordstreams then how long before others start blowing up our pipelines? The Kennedys also took out Diem so it’s not like their hands were clean. I think Hersh’s main theme is that the Kennedys, and Biden too, have a “dark side” and that I believe. Their father Joe Kennedy was a real piece of work.

          1. tevhatch

            Did the CIA ask Kennedy’s permission to take out Kennedy? I find the idea that the CIA pressed Kennedy to assassinate Castro and he agreed fits my bias, and that they probably didn’t bother to inform either him or his successor of their failures and repeated attempts also fits my bias. Anther option for the 2nd that works for me is Castro was so good for the CIA’s business that they purposefully failed each time.

  29. ChrisFromGA

    So, its not looking good for any sort of sunlight or transparency around the kid who allegedly released classified documents (Jack T.)

    More questions than answers 3 days after he got arrested. Does he have a lawyer? Is he going to plead guilty or not guilty? Has he already been given a new identity and building a new life in Fargo, ND?

    This looks like a classic “memory holing” operation.

    1. Jason Boxman

      This seemed to nuke shows in progress last time. Another reason I prefer finished series.

  30. Wukchumni

    If you ever plan to motor west
    Travel my way, take the highway that is best
    Get your kicks on route M 06

    It winds from Kyiv to Mukachevo
    More than 450 miles all the way
    Get your kicks on route M 06

    Now you go through Zhytomyr
    Zviahel, Korets
    And Rivne is mighty pretty
    You see Dubno,
    Brody & Lviv
    Stryi, Skole
    Don’t forget Skaliava
    Uzhhorod, and make chop-chop to Chop
    Won’t you get hip to this timely tip
    When you make that Ukraine trip
    Get your kicks on route M 06

    Won’t you get hip to this timely tip:
    When you make that run for more ammo trip
    Get your kicks on route M 06
    Get your kicks on route M 06
    Get your kicks on route M 06

    Route 66, performed by Chuck Barry

  31. The Rev Kev

    Ruh roh! ‘The Canadian Broadcasting Corporation (CBC) announced on Monday that it was “pausing” its activity on Twitter after the social media platform labeled it as state-funded, arguing that this somehow impugned their editorial independence.

    “Our journalism is impartial and independent. To suggest otherwise is untrue. That is why we are pausing our activities on Twitter,” the government-funded outlet tweeted.’

    Somebody else is not happy about pointing out how they are wearing no clothes.

    1. Don

      Yes, it is of course beyond any doubt that CBC is 100% publicly-funded, which we resolutely call “tax-payer funded”, which is of course, totally different.

      There is also no doubt that CBC/RadioCanada is biased in favour of the Liberal Party (AKA “The Natural Governing Party”), and gently averse to the Conservative Party. Quite subtle, but unmistakable.

      When not in power (which is more often than not) The Conservative Party resolutely calls for defunding the CBC. In or out of power, the Liberal Party promotes continued generous funding of the CBC, “a bastion of Canadian values”. The Conservative Party backs off on its hostility towards the CBC when it periodically comes to power, and ex-Conservative Prime Ministers and Cabinet Ministers are treated warmly and gently, occasionally even reverentially, by the CBC. The CBC is generally positive towards the NDP, except during election campaigns, if it appears that the NDP might syphon off enough Liberal votes to enable a Conservative victory.

      It’s a quintessentially Canadian folk dance.

      1. El Slobbo

        Not so long ago, the CBC was proud to be a valuable Canadian government service. The lack of any need to pander to the lowest common denominator as a means of pleasing corporate sponsors was a plus.

        BTW, numbers on CBC’s website: 1.7 billion total revenue in 2018-2019, of which 1.2 billion is government funding. That’s about 70%.

        1. tevhatch

          …need to pander to the lowest common denominator…

          So that’s where it went wrong, it pandered to the people elected to put the public purse to use for private gain.

  32. Jason Boxman

    So I completely ignored ChatGPT because the whole AI moniker has the media agog, and I can’t stand it. But I finally signed up today for a trial, and it’s spooky how effective it is at basic tasks; For example, I dumped in my modest list of recipe titles, and had it categorize them for me. First pass was good enough, then I had it remove duplicates and pick the single best category for each recipe. It did as well as I’d do, maybe better.

    I must be boring, because I can’t really think of much else to actually try without really thinking about it.

    I’ve had no urge to try to “talk” to it so it emits humanized replies. This definitely has the potential to change the world, in one way or another.

  33. JustTheFacts

    I’m one of those very old fashioned people who don’t believe there should be regulations to “protect children online”. Children should not be online. End of story. If you don’t let your children walk around the most depraved streets of the world’s cities, you don’t let them use the internet either.

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