Links 7/4/2023

‘Hot Money’ Is Piling Up at Banks and It’s Starting to Take a Toll Bloomberg

Why are interest rate rises not taming inflation? FT

Office landlords struggling for tenants are facing an even scarier predicament — zombie properties Insider

The multibillion-dollar lawsuits that could radically reshape how we buy and sell homes forever Insider

July Fourth Pre-Game Festivities

Celebrating the Fourth of July JSTOR Daily

#297 GETTYSBURG (Part the First) (podcast) Richard and Tracy Youngdahl. July 1–3. I highly recommend this enthralling, magisterial podcast. One factoid I learned from it: When the recently appointed General Meade arrived at the battlefield on the evening after the Confederate and Union armies had collided, the first thing he did was order a map of the ground to be made, and copies were distributed to all his commanders. Lee did no such thing.

How to keep your dogs calm during the fireworks on July 4 – from cuddles and treats to calming music and pheromone collars Daily Mail

Americans are down on morality, family and country Axios

The New 1970s Noah Smith, Noahpinion

The world’s tallest flagpole. A tiny Maine town. An idea meant to unite people is dividing them AP

Roller coaster riders stuck upside down for hours at Wisconsin festival CBS


We’re Building Things Based on a Climate We No Longer Live In Scientific American


6 southern Colorado counties, facing drought and thirsty neighbors, move to block water exports Colorado Sun


Effectiveness of the Coronavirus Disease 2019 Bivalent Vaccine Open Forum Infectious Diseases. N = 51,017 employees of Cleveland Clinic. From the Abstract: “The bivalent COVID-19 vaccine given to working-aged adults afforded modest protection overall against COVID-19 while the BA.4/5 lineages were the dominant circulating strains, afforded less protection when the BQ lineages were dominant, and effectiveness was not demonstrated when the XBB lineages were dominant.”

Viral persistence in children infected with SARS-CoV-2: current evidence and future research strategies (personal view) The Lancet. Literature review. From the Summary: “Our analysis suggests that in children, independent from disease severity, SARS-CoV-2 can spread systemically and persist for weeks to months.”


Beware a Chinese ‘dollar avalanche’ FT

Tax Havens Obscured at Least $1.4 Trillion of Foreign Investment in China Bloomberg. Handy chart:

U.S. Looks to Restrict China’s Access to Cloud Computing to Protect Advanced Technology WSJ

China warns of ‘multiple natural disasters’ in July Channel New Asia

Japan gets UN nuclear watchdog’s approval to discharge water from Fukushima disaster FT


Israel launches largest military assault in West Bank in years FT. On the bright side, maybe Israel can sell some of the more successful weaponry to Ukraine.

European Disunion

France riots: when police shot a teenager dead, a rumbling pressure cooker exploded The Conversation

Why France Is Burning Foreign Policy

France riots: Why do the banlieues erupt time and time again? BBC

Protests in France over police killing of teenager spread to Greece Anadolu Agency

New Not-So-Cold War

Really catapulting the propaganda:

Ukraine says Putin is planning a nuclear disaster. These people live nearby. WaPo:

Where’s the kitten?

Ukrainian Nuclear Plant Is Just One of Innumerable Problems for Its Neighbors NYT

IAEA: Zaporizhzhia nuclear plant reconnected to backup power line Kyiv Independent. So now the fuel rods can be moved? Out in the open?

* * *

Russian forces are on the offensive near Bakhmut and Marinka, 30 combat engagements occurred today – General Staff report Ukrainska Pravda. Suburbs of Donetsk.

Every Block Is Another Battle: Ukraine’s Latest Eastern Stand NYT. Marinka.

* * *

Ukraine intensively prepares for Vilius summit – Foreign Minister Ukrainska Pravda. Moar cowbell.

Russian military says it fended off Ukrainian drone attack on Moscow AP. Also moar cowbell.

* * *

Where Will All the Wagner Group Mercenaries Go Now That Russia Has Exiled Their Leader? RAND

Putin’s Corporate Takeover of Wagner Has Begun WSJ

Prigozhin appeals for public support as Wagner continues recruiting FT

The Wagner ‘Coup’ Was Staged by Putin—and the West Fell for It Newsweek

* * *

Foreign Minister Sergey Lavrov’s interview with the Great Game programme on Channel One, Moscow, June 28, 2023 The Ministry of Foreign Affairs of the Russian Federation

John Mearsheimer—Leading International Relations Scholar—On US Power & the Darkness Ahead for Ukraine (interview) Glenn Greenwald, System Update:

Ukraine Timeline Tells the Story Consortium News

Biden Adminstration

Biden nominates controversial former Trump-appointee to Public Diplomacy Commission CNN. Elliott Abrams.

Who is National Security Advisor Jake Sullivan, the man running US foreign policy? Al Mayadeen

The Sun Sets On Richard N. Haass’s CFR Career Simplicius the Thinker(s)

The Supremes

What to Know About a Seemingly Fake Document in a Gay Rights Case NYT


Massachusetts is not the gun-control beacon it once was The Economist. Masshole Firearms (!).


‘Public health has lost the war’: States legalize raw milk, despite public health warnings USA Today

Digital Watch

Everything Continues to Be Going Just Great at Twitter Daring Fireball:

From its inception through this weekend, Twitter has been like blogging, insofar as tweets being public. You visit the URL for a tweet, you see the tweet. Now it’s a walled garden, like most of Facebook, available only to logged-in users. I suspect this change will prevent the Internet Archive from caching tweets, too. That just sucks.

The real story is not the rate limiting despite what, no doubt following Musk’s lead, the tech pack journalism opines. No, the real story, as I urge here, is that Musk is turning Twitter into a walled garden, by not allowing anyone to read tweets, and breaking embeds. And nobody is saying that’s temporary, unlike the rate limiting (not well-defined and in any case not universally effective).

Burning Down The House The Defector. Also well worth a read.

Meta’s ‘Twitter Killer’ App Is Coming NYT. “Meta remains the most credible competitor to Twitter, with deep pockets and an audience of more than three billion people who use Facebook, Instagram or its other apps. Other platforms trying to capitalize on Twitter’s weakness — such as Tumblr, Nostr, Spill, Mastodon and Bluesky — are all much smaller than Meta.” Facebook is a rotting corpse. Instagram is visually-oriented, Twitter is text-based. I don’t see why users would move, or even add on. I think this new venture will go badly for The Zuckerberg™, and that makes me happy.

* * *

Will AI Change Our Memories? Yikes.

Supply Chain

UN body discusses potential for deep sea mining, permits may be coming soon FOX

Zeitgeist Watch

Can you trust a Harvard dishonesty researcher? Vox

Class Warfare

Report reveals extent of illegal fees for seafarer recruitment Splash 247

Remote Work Sticks for All Kinds of Jobs WSJ

Antidote du jour (via):

Bonus antidote:

See yesterday’s Links and Antidote du Jour here.

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About Lambert Strether

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


  1. The Rev Kev

    Before the day starts off, happy 4th July guys. Just remember. No pants with belts today but preferable stretch pants.

    1. griffen

      Number one goal for the day as follows. Start with a count of fingers and toes, end your day with the same count. Avoid DUI’s and be certain that police and troopers will be looking, and avoid drowning ( sad to report, last night news here in South Carolina there was a reported drowning ).

      Happy 4th of July. Or for historians, today marks the date of death for both Jefferson and Adams in 1826 (and yes I cheated on the year).

      1. mrsyk

        Ok, so no mowing the lawn, no driving, and stay away from the deep end of the pool.
        Happy Independence Day.

        1. griffen

          More a light bit of some guidelines, to be taken with a grain of salt (lime and/or tequila sold separately). You just know, it’s like the advice on swimming in the ocean every summer and being surprised that sharks find a human to be tasty.

          Mowing the lawn sounds like work to me however.

            1. ambrit

              Ha! Poor Colonials. You just changed one set of Oligarchs for another set.
              Stay safe. Watch out for falling ordinance.

      2. Samuel Conner

        > 1826

        The thing to remember is that it was the 50th anniversary of the Declaration. It’s a remarkable “coincidence”; one gets the impression (or one simply imagines; who knows what to make of something like this 200 years after the fact) that they seem to have both been hanging on by sheer force of will to live to see that milestone and then, having reached it, they were ready to expire.

        Perhaps they would not have been so keen had they been able to foresee what the nation would become.

        1. Jessica

          I believe that both were already disillusioned by the time they died. They fought for a republic of the virtuous (i.e. themselves) and by 1826, it was already clear that the republic was of the grasping and greedy. Though that did leave far more room for ordinary folks to play roles and the metastasis that is the empire came a full century later.

      3. Wukchumni

        Only 1 President has ever been depicted on an American coin that was issued when he was living, and sure you could google the answer but where’s the fun in that?

        1. griffen

          I certainly used the magical answer box and found Calvin Coolidge. Surprising, and unexpected, answer to the above question! I was really leaning on the answer being FDR, given the length of his time in the office and tumultuous era of Depression and World War II.

          1. Mildred Montana

            Thank you, another factoid for my over-loaded memory. Not surprising however, when one thinks about it. The Roaring ’20s. Good times. And they were all due to Coolidge. /sarc

            But then came 1929, the Great Crash, and new President Hoover, faced with circumstances beyond his control, could only offer platitudes, incantations, and unfounded optimism. An impossible task, but no coin for him.

            1. ambrit

              “Poor Hoover” was essentially an apparatchik. His answer to the Bonus March was to send in the Army. Who ran the Army for him during that “exercise?” Head Honcho was Douglass MacArthur. His able henchmen were Dwight Eisenhower and George Patton. Also, the first time, that I could find, of the use of armoured vehicles against a crowd.
              Remember the real reason behind the Fourth.

          2. Wukchumni

            The Sesquicentennial (that’s the 1926 commemorative coin with Coolidge) & Bicentennial celebrations were quite something, but i’ve heard about bupkis in regards to the Semiquincentennial, soon to be upon us.

    2. Wukchumni

      Seemingly the only import from the People’s Republic when I was a kid was fireworks* and I couldn’t get enough of them no matter if it was July 4th** or November 5th.

      We’d drive to Tijuana once every couple years, and my dad was big on making sure we saw the cardboard shacks those less fortunate than us were living in on the hill coming in, but I was all about somehow procuring firecrackers and maybe getting a picture of myself on a donkey painted to look like a zebra, yeah that’s the ticket!

      To give you an idea of how things have changed in some cities declaration of independence from them, there was a portable electric sign as you hit the city limits for Whittier last week that proclaimed:

      ‘$5000 Fine For Using Any Fireworks’.

      *the only imported item for sale on shelves across the USA from the Soviet Union, was Stolichnaya vodka

      ** Happy birthday, you old coot

      1. ambrit

        I have been told that the “Naked” in the blogsite name is purely Rhetorical.
        Clothing is not an ‘option.’

  2. Lexx

    ‘Public health has lost the war’: States legalize raw milk, despite public health warnings’

    Labor and livestock should go on strike, but until that day… I wanted raw milk to learn to make my own cheese. It has not been available here except through buying ‘a share’ directly through the producer’s owners. Maybe that will change soon…

    1. chris

      After learning about French cheese making, I’m very curious about raw milk and raw milk products too. The prime distinction in France appears to be extremely close knowledge of the entire supply chain. Like if you say the cheese was made from milk provided by a happy cow, that’s not the same as HappyCow(tm), they mean it was well treated livestock tended by a generational recipient of tradition and it ate the best grass on the best side of the mountain and was obtained during the right season and if you wanted you could visit the mountain side pasture in Jura and meet the cow.

      I don’t know how to replicate that in the US.

      1. JohnA

        De Gaulle claimed that there were more cheeses in France than days in the year. Every region has its own selection. They are usually labelled whether made of raw milk, lait cru, or not. And whether cow, goat or sheep milk. I was once advised by a French acquaintance not to eat cheese bought from a supermarket until long after its expiry date.

      2. lyman alpha blob

        Growing up on my family’s dairy farm, I drank raw milk exclusively for the first 18 years of my life. You have to stir it before drinking it to keep the cream mixed in. As long as the milk is stored properly, drinking it is fine. These days, most milk goes straight from the cow’s udder through piping into a refrigerated bulk tank. If you are interested in getting some raw milk, I’d get to know a local farmer and see how they run their operation.

        When I got to college and had to drink store bought milk for the first time, even the “whole” milk seemed like water after so much had been removed from it.

        1. Brunches with Cats

          Long line of dairy farmers on both sides of my family, spent first six years on small dairy managed by my father. We never bought milk. So the story goes, mother had to send raw milk with me to babysitter’s, because I couldn’t tolerate anything else. Then came kindergarten and the daily small carton. Resistance was futile (although I tried my darndest). Came home every day with a headache.

          Re: the comment further down about strong bones, none of my baby teeth would fall out on their own and had to be pulled as the adult tooth was emerging. Never attributed that to raw milk, but it’s an interesting theory.

    2. Eclair

      Societies, pre-refrigeration, relying on milk (cow, goat, sheep, camel ….) also developed a variety of fermentation procedures that reduce the incidence of harmful (to humans) bacteria in the final product. These processes also prolong the shelf life of milk. Long before we had shelves. So, we have yoghurt, kefir, filmjölk (my favorite.). The addition of salt and a long aging process further reduces harmful bacteria, and increases shelf life. And results in …. OMG! …. cheddar, tomme, gouda, parmigiana, roquefort …..

      Good luck in your cheese-making journey, Lexx!

      1. Bugs

        In Srbija (can I spell it that way now?) there’s this great stuff called kajmak, a kind of fresh fermented clotted cream that is made especially by old ladies in a special place in their houses. Most people know where to get the real stuff without going to the supermarket. It’s fantastic on a multitude of Balkan dishes, especially on čevapi with ajvar…

    3. Amfortas the hippie

      yeah. we’ve got a raw milk lady, here.
      advocate for it in the texas lege…and actually got a few concessions.
      still, last i looked, it was “on farm sales only”…but like me and my veggies, she does a lot of back alley sales…like a crack dealer.
      too pricey for me…and she talks yer ear off,lol.
      but its good…tastes real.
      and makes awesome butter.
      she makes all manner of stuff with it…including kombucha.
      and her whole brood(like 6 kids) grew up on it…and, as shes happy to tell you, they’ve never been sick(until covid, turns out)

      and, related, my late stepdad…in w heelchair(T-7) since ’68, Da Nang…grew up on a dairy.
      few years ago, the VA had to take a bone sample for some reason…doctor broke his stainless steel chisel thing on stepdad’s femur.
      said, “well, the bones are not the problem…”

      1. lyman alpha blob

        “…they’ve never been sick…”

        As I mentioned above, I grew up drinking the raw stuff, and graduated from high school with perfect attendance – never had a single sick day at school after catching the chicken pox in the 3rd grade

        Seen a few studies over the years showing people who grew up on farms tend to be healthier due to all the good bacteria acquired there, some presumably coming from the milk they drink. We lived a few hours away from the family farm by the time our child was born so we didn’t have access to raw milk, but I did take the kid out to the cow pasture at a week old in the hopes that some of the bovine goodness would rub off. Kid has been very healthy for the first decade and a half.

        1. howie

          Back in 1980-81, I had a job delivering kefir (called Refik – for some legal reason) and raw milk to health food stores – my route was NYC. The stuff came from upstate NY. (Gates Farm – descendants of General Gates of revolutionary War days)

          I was told the farm had to do all kinds of certification to sell raw milk. Raw milk was something I had never seen – or heard of – before. It scared me – and I was afraid to use any myself – especially if those milk cartoons got too warm – and swelled: then again I’ve never been a fan of milk)
          Seems like there is a lot more ‘health food’ things – like raw milk – available nowadays than 1980.
          Side note: the route was eventually co- owned by a Hasidic Jewish food business in Williamsburg, Brooklyn. I don’t know how that came about.

    4. DJG, Reality Czar

      Lexx: When I saw the link to the article, I thought that the idea was to free up unpasteurized milk to make cheese. Here in the Undisclosed Region, there are several cheeses made from unpasteurized milk, including the memorable Toma de Lait Brusc (which goes by its Piedmontese name and doesn’t have an exact Italian translation).

      As to drinking fluid unpasteurized milk: I’m of an age at which I cannot tolerate fluid milk. So I am questioning (with a bias) the use of fluid milk as a food.

      I doubt that the public-health experts are completely off base here.

      1. Janie

        Our local grocery chain in northwestern Oregon sells pasteurized (but not homogenized) milk in glass bottles. More than once, someone in checkout line has warned me that something is wrong with my milk – the top looks different. It tastes the way I remember milk. It’s too pricey, small local operation, for most families with children.

    5. cgregory

      Legalizing raw milk will open it up to corporate predation. Almost the first thing the corporations will do is corrupt the definition of “raw.” Then they’ll cut every possible corner to drive out all the competition and maximize profits.

      Before you know it, we will have a significant segment of the raw milk-consuming population infected with tuberculosis. Better to leave it in the gray zone, where ethical producers will deliver excellent quality despite laws on the books forbidding the sale.

      1. Amfortas the hippie

        there’s something to be said for gray and black market food sources!
        “the west wasnt won with a registered gun”, and all.
        look what happened to “Organic”(tm)

        oh, and custer died for our sins.

    1. Milton

      It would be nice if they automated attribution. So the next time someone gets a response from a query about Calpers shenanigans there would be a well-formatted reference below, showing a majority of the info came from NC.

  3. Nikkikat

    Seeing the article on Biden nominating the most criminal Elliot Abrams made my stomach flip over. For Gods sake! Who’s next Dick Cheney and John Bolton! Biden is insanely Evil.
    Article mentions diplomatic post. So Nuland is now just scouring the sewers for personnel.

    1. The Rev Kev

      When Trump brought Elliot Abrams out of his crypt a coupla years ago, the comments got kinda brutal on NC because people knew who he was and what he was all about. As long as people like this are promoted to diplomatic posts, American foreign policy will stay the same.

      1. lambert strether

        > American foreign policy will stay the same

        That’s hardly fair. It could get worse.

    2. DJG, Reality Czar

      Thank you, Nikkikat. All I can write, channeling Sinéad O’Connor playing the Blessed Virgin Mary in the film “Butcher Boy” is, Fer fook’s sake, Francie.

      Fer fook’s sake. Take a look at this bloodthirsty record, lifted from the CNN article: “Abrams was also blasted by a Human Rights Watch report for his attempts in a February 1982 Senate testimony to downplay reports of the massacre of 1,000 people by US-trained-and-equipped military units in the Salvadoran town of El Mozote in December 1981 – the largest mass killing in recent Latin American history. He insisted the numbers of reported victims were “implausible” and “lavished praise” on the military battalion behind the mass killings”

      One immoral and depraved zombie appoints another immoral and depraved zombie.

      But don’t vote “Third Party”! Vote Blue No Matter Who!

    3. EGrise

      “Controversial,” forsooth.

      Probably controversial at DC dinner parties, but for the rest of us he’s as “controversial” as Pol Pot.

      The media just doesn’t care any more, do they?

    4. pjay

      I hope that “liberal” Biden apologists will now stop pretending that there is any difference between the neocon Democrats and the neocon Republicans. Any so-called “liberal” or Democrat who defends this move has advanced beyond Trupmp/Putin derangement to a complete and utter rejection of reality.

      Don’t know if Caitlin’s reaction has been posted here yet. As usual, it captures my own feelings pretty well:

      His nomination is for “the bipartisan United States Advisory Commission on Public Diplomacy” – i.e. the *propaganda* commission. Indeed, Nikkikat, there are only a few living humans I would classify as possibly more evil, Cheney being one.

    5. wendigo

      My favorite Elliot video

      I have to give Wikipedia credit.

      From the Wikipedia home page as you type in Elliot A in the search bar one option that appears is

      Elliot Abrams
      American war criminal

      Funny the actual Wikipedia entry does not call him that.

        1. Jeff Z

          Got there late, alas! Could not see since it’s been several hours since I last looked in.

        2. JCC

          If you select the “Talk” tab you are able to see the various bit’s of legitimate information that wikipedia editors won’t put on the “Article” page. It covers a lot of the truthful, negative, stuff that most won’t bother looking at.

          The fact is that Abrams is a real live War Criminal. It’s unfortunate that Wikipedia doesn’t want that information posted on the main Article page using the policy excuse they’ve invented called “contentious”. I understand the reasoning, but in his case I personally see nothing contentious about it.

    6. square coats

      I saw a commentary on the twitters proposing that this was an attempt to find someone so bad that Nuland would look comparatively not so bad.

    7. Paradan

      Ought oh, this could be a precursor move to Disney releasing a Smurfs reboot. Oh god and live action at that…

  4. semper loquitur

    re: Woahpinion

    I am bested. I eagerly wanted to write a nice, long, juicy comment about Noahpinion’s latest contribution to the discourse but I was quickly overwhelmed by spheres of delusion and self-aggrandizement so vast that words failed. It reads like a hurriedly written Intro to Political Science paper, yet manages to define a spectrum of confusions that arcs so epically high as to interfere with local cloud patterns. It’s as if arch-Brightsider Steve Pinker had a baby, a thought the mind recoils from as soon as it is formed.

    1. Aleric

      I started with the intent for some lite hate reading and quickly bounced off the rapid fire confusions. A worthy application for Thomas Friedman’s column space after he moves to Mars.

    2. Darthbobber

      I was wondering if he experimented with semi-automating his writing by letting chatGPT do most of the lifting now. Reads a lot like a strung together AI piece. Even below his usual standard.

    3. skippy

      Noah is about a squishy as one gets …..

      Some of us took him to task years ago, amount of inversions required by him too move goal posts on shifting sand was epic … if all else failed he would deploy the ban hammer and call it a victory …

    4. eg

      Yeah, I read as much of his stuff as I can stand, but it’s a slog. I’m relieved when he issues paywalled content because then I’m spared. He’s an apologist for power when he isn’t merely uninformed.

      I mostly go there expecting to be irritated and to occasionally cross swords in the comments …

  5. upstater

    Who would pay to read Noah…

    But I do think that the Ukraine War has reminded Americans that their country has the capacity to use its power to do great good in the world. That could help reverse some of the decline in our self-image that sprang out of the Iraq War and the War on Terror — just as it has improved our image abroad. The national self-doubt of the post-Vietnam 70s eventually gave way to the resurgent patriotism of the 80s and 90s, when we wisely shifted from occupying smaller countries to helping smaller countries resist Soviet occupation and domination. A surge of patriotism won’t erase our social divisions, but it could help moderate them, by reminding us that in some sense we’re all on the same team.

    Maybe Noah should ask what the ROW thinks… The resurgent patriotism in the 80s and 90s led directly to the warmonger neocons, who have been in control for decades now. Noah is an idiot.

    1. semper loquitur

      Mental Kool-Whip. “Green shoots” ahead. Yeah, in the hastily scrabbled gardens you’ll see coming up when a major supply chain disruption hits.

    2. Dftbs

      The worst kind of idiot.

      I think that in the cauldron of their 20th century anti-communist zeal Americans rejected all understanding of historical dialectic as anathema. Whether conservatives with their Strauss-Howe bull$h!t or liberals at the end of history, now Noah with the 2020s as the 1970s and “American unrest” as a cycle. They relinquished their agency over to these mythical cycles.

      This Overlook Hotel view of history makes them blind their predicament. The 2020s aren’t the 1970s; there is no morning in America coming up. 2020s American no longer has a deep reservoir of unmatched material wealth and productive capacity which to financialize, leverage and consume. That was a one time bump, the last line to snort at the end of the party, and we snorted it three generations ago.

      This unrest isn’t cyclical it’s one of many consequences of a long process of decay. Assuming that history resolves itself into happy endings, that “greenshoots” are harbingers of an inevitable upside, so just sit back and let the system do what it does, is what got us here in the first place.

      1. hunkerdown

        Dialectic is unmasculine, or something like that.

        It’s not a cycle, it’s something that keeps happening for cause. If there is a cycle, it’s because we try to reform the problems instead of solving them. All values are a waste of time.

    3. tevhatch

      The better question might be what did “Noah” barter/trade/pay to gain his platform it’s exposure. Reading his material on Hong Kong “riots: (now France, that’s what I call a riot). I have a pretty good idea about at least one counter party, the NED. I suppose one day I’ll have to see what paid panels he’s appeared on to get more clarity.

    4. pjay

      I bet that explains Biden’s nomination of Elliot Abrams. He wants to recapture that “resurgent patriotism of the 80s” that saw Abrams and his ilk use our “power to do great good in the world’ by supporting fascist death squads that were “helping” all those “smaller countries” in Latin America resist the commies. I think Noah may be on to something. It’s morning in America again! I feel warm and tingly all over. Come on, guys! We’re all on the same team!

    1. Colonel Smithers

      Thank you, Rev.

      The vultures in London and New York will also be disappointed. They were looking forward to this, er, um, character heading the Norwegian central bank, including the sovereign wealth fund, and being allowed to pillage it like they have for so many other investment funds.

      The UK’s Ben Wallace will also be disappointed, but he had been let on a few months ago. Wallace has a young family to fund and, despite being a former Scots Guards officer, is not particularly well off, so was looking forward to a position like that before the US MIC beckoned. The opposition benches won’t be fun.

      1. The Rev Kev

        Thank you, Colonel. I heard that Boris Johnson wanted the job too and I can only imagine what sort of fiasco that would have been if he had been nominated. But as a comedy sitcom, it would have been on par with “Yes Minister.”

        1. Colonel Smithers

          Thank you, Rev.

          Boris did, but I don’t know how seriously, and thought he could treat the job as a jolly and have others do the work. Theresa May was also considered, but not for long and by many.

          British forces are in a parlous state, but still have some capability that only the US and France can muster in NATO. That counts for something. What has counted against British candidates for the top job is a view that Brexit weakened not just the EU, but NATO, too. One hopes former UK diplomat Aurelien / David pipes up.

          1. skippy

            Amends O/T

            Ugh at that Mauritius Crypto thingy … seems more virulent than covid …

      2. tevhatch

        An indication NATO is falling apart, so they have to grind the seat to make glue powder. However, maybe Stole-the-burger is so slow that current raiders of the wealth fund like to keep things as they are for a bit longer.

      3. digi_owl

        Feared as much.

        Sadly the nation is running out of alternatives, as our most photogenic opposition leader was just caught on camera helping himself to some overpriced sunglasses.

    2. Mildred Montana

      The drunk won’t last long. Pint-sized Chrystia will be under the table after two drinks.

      Out of curiosity I googled her height. One site listed it at 5’6″, the other at 5’9″. (Why such a discrepancy on a factual matter?) Having seen her on TV standing in the company of others, her head at chest-level, I was immediately suspicious. 𝘕𝘰 𝘸𝘢𝘺 𝘴𝘩𝘦’𝘴 𝘦𝘷𝘦𝘯 𝘤𝘭𝘰𝘴𝘦 𝘵𝘰 𝘵𝘩𝘢𝘵, I said to myself.

      Here’s a couple of images of her standing beside Boris Johnson and Justin Trudeau:

      Johnson is reputedly 5’9″ and Trudeau 6’2″. Look at the photos, judge for yourself, and then ask why the media can’t be honest about even the simplest things. My best guess is she’s 5’2″ and not an inch more.

      1. Mildred Montana

        Oops, forgot to take into account the kind of shoes she was wearing! She might be even shorter.

        1. upstater

          I loved the picture of her last year at a NATO meeting in a black skirt and red blouse and jacket. OUN girl! At least Baerbock has staff to advise her to avoid brown…

          1. The Rev Kev

            She may try to deny it, but she doesn’t try to hide it, does she? If she ever became Canadian PM, she would be exactly the sort of person to turn Canada into an authoritarian State.

    3. Skip Intro

      They’re drinking with Ben Wallace, though he gets even more handsy when he’s in his cups.

    4. Carolinian

      Nikki Haley is tanned and rested–has spiked heels to deal with Putin.

      The Indian connection will also help lure Modi into NATO.

  6. Chas

    The story about unpasteurized milk reminded me that something else is done to industrial milk that the public knows even less about — homogenization. When use of milking machines on dairy farms became widespread in the 1950s to save human labor, cows didn’t react well to the machines. They caused infections in the udders and their bodies produced white blood cells to fight the infections. White blood cells formed a sludge in the bottoms of milk bottles, which back then were of clear glass. Customers saw a cream line on top and a sludge line of the bottom of the bottles. The process of homogenization dispersed the cream and sludge into the milk and kept them there. The fact of infected milk was thus hidden from the customers. I learned of this years ago when as a reporter I wrote a history of milk processing. I’m not sure of the situation today but I do know industrial milk is still homogenized.

    1. Keith Howard

      Milk in the US is also deodorized. When I was working in Mexico in 1980 I noticed that some milk was labeled ‘deodorizada.’

  7. flora

    Why do Americans have a Bill of Rights? Blame it on Independence Day…. and citizens with guns. / ;)

    Happy 4th. And careful with those firecrackers.

          1. flora

            No, I am thinking of Paul Revere’s warning ride ahead of the Battle of Concord and the battle at the North Bridge. The French Revolution came after the American Revolution. / ;)

        1. hunkerdown

          Real countries peopled by real cultures celebrate the ends of their revolutions. Only terrorists celebrate the start of a war.

          1. flora

            Guess France didn’t get the message. / ;)

            Bastille Day
            ” The taking of the Bastille signaled the beginning of the French Revolution, and it thus became a symbol of the end of the ancien régime.” – Britannica

            1. The Rev Kev

              The ancien régime. Isn’t that the one that taxed poor people to the point of starvation – and then turned around and gave rich people that money? That ancien régime? So everything old is new again. Who knew?

                1. GramSci

                  Medicare Advantage Plans, moar and moar citizens paying taxes rent freedom money to landlords and banks. We’re pretty close.

                  1. vao

                    Rents are not the same as taxes.

                    The “Fermiers Généraux” were, by contract, entitled to collect taxes, custom duties, special excise taxes (such as the infamous “gabelle” on salt), as well as administrating monopolies (tobacco, gun powder…) with target amounts to be delivered to the crown’s treasury. The Farmers paid dearly for the privilege, usually kept everything above those target receipts; in some cases, these excess “profits” were shared with the crown. Since the contracts were limited in time, it is easy to envision the kind of abuses the system led to.

                    Plenty of General Farmers where then beheaded during the Revolution, including famous French scientist Lavoisier. As a General Farmer, he got to rely upon the high-precision scales of the General Farm, serving to detect frauds, in his scientific experiments.

                    But when coming to rents: have you ever heard of “banalities”?

                    It works like this: you are an aristocrat with a domain somewhere in France (the system existed in other countries as well). You own some public facility such as a baking oven, a mill, a wine press, a market hall, a breeder bull or a boar.

                    Your duties as a nobleman: defray the costs of maintaining that infrastructure. Your subjects are just obliged (legally so) to rely upon it to the exclusion of any other comparable facility. Of course, at the price fixed by the seigneur…

                    Banalities were one of the very first (hated) privileges to be abolished in 1789.

                    We are coming close to the ransacking perpetrated by the 1st Estate during the Ancien Régime, but, frankly, we have not quite reached that stage yet.

              1. Mildred Montana

                There was no end to the ancien regime’s attempts to extract taxes from the Third Estate (in other words, everybody except them and the clergy). The 𝘤𝘰𝘳𝘷𝘦𝘦 (several days a year of compulsory unpaid labor on roads, etc.), the 𝘵𝘢𝘪𝘭𝘭𝘦 (a head tax), and the 𝘨𝘢𝘣𝘦𝘭𝘭𝘦 (a tax on salt): all of them fell oppressively on the poor.

                Then came the comeuppance for the First and Second Estates: “A severe winter in 1788 resulted in famine and widespread starvation in the countryside. Rising prices in Paris brought bread riots. By 1789 France was broke. The nobility refused to pay more taxes, and the peasants simply couldn’t.”


                The fattened and entitled nobility and clergy were now in trouble. Rather than yield to reality, many fled while the recalitrant perished. They were smug victims of their own hubris and comforting convictions that things would go on just as they had forever.

      1. Arkady Bogdanov

        Sorry for being late to the party as usual. Yes, I agree with Lambert here. Although I am an advocate for gun rights, guns had nothing to do with the Bill of Rights. The Bill of Rights exists because of the Anti-Federalists, and actual rioting and arsons by colonial Americans- mainly unaffiliated groups such as those collectively known as plebeian populists-southern Pennsylvania was a particular hotbed for this. This was well documented in the book Unruly Americans, I believe.
        One interesting note, is that if you read the histories, the constitution we live under is basically a coup document. It was negotiated in secret and instituted by elites with absolutely no democratic input by the population- hence the rioting that occurred at the time that led to the Bill of Rights as a concession (which was ignored when convenient from the get go, and with increasing frequency as time progressed). Very few people know how our government came to be, and the significant opposition at the time to the new constitution. The Articles of Confederation were thrown out because under it we had a for-real democracy, and the peasants had the same rights as the creditor class. and were given equal consideration in courts. Another interesting note for those interested in money supply and it’s effects- the environment during the time of the Articles was deflationary. There is much to learn if you read about that period. Nobody wants the public to actually know what happened back then, so most of the published history is from dissertations and low volume printings.

    1. Milton

      The US constitution and Bill of rights makes more sense if one replaces “people” with “land-owning persons and corporations” for example, the preamble:
      We the people land-owning persons and corporations, in order to form a more perfect union, establish justice insure domestic tranquility (control of the rabble) provide for the common defense (exclusive resource rights), promote the general welfare (fiscal liquidity), and secure the blessings of liberty to ourselves and our posterity (favorable estate tax structures), do ordain and establish this constitution (rules-based doc) for the United States of America.

      1. Lex

        “Liberty” in the usage of the time, especially in political economy was an open code word for “property rights”. Lots of arguments on both sides can be made about the Declaration of Independence and the potential of the American revolution. But the ratification of the constitution ended almost all of potential. It, as you say, established an oligarchy dressed up in liberal democratic robes. Almost all the progress that’s been made in the US required not following the constitution.

      2. Kouros

        I love this quote found in an article in Lapham Quarterly, and I never get tired of bring it up:

        On the morning of May 29, 1787, in the Pennsylvania State House in Philadelphia, Edmund Randolph, governor of Virginia, opened the meeting that would become known as the Constitutional Convention by identifying the underlying cause of various problems that the delegates of thirteen states had assembled to solve. “Our chief danger,” Randolph declared, “arises from the democratic parts of our constitutions.” None of the separate states’ constitutions, he said, had established “sufficient checks against the democracy.”

  8. semper loquitur

    re: dishonesty

    “Kelsey Piper is a senior writer at Future Perfect, Vox’s effective altruism-inspired section on the world’s biggest challenges.”

    I’m curious to see what Ms. Piper thinks of SBF, High Altruist of the Church of Crypto-Scams. I’m sure it’s a “bad apple” take. Intent upon her holy mission of “Finding the best ways to do good.”, she adheres to her faith in the notion that allowing a small sub-set of humanity to accumulate incredible wealth is the sure way to the Utopia. Never mind that that accumulation has, and still is, generating untold misery around the world. What’s important to Ms. Piper and the whole choir of mewling sycophants to power that our media is comprised of is that her masters get to do good. No one gives a fu(k about the recipients. The act is a ritual to cement the position of the powerful and their lapdogs sniffling the floor about the table…

    1. griffen

      I think it was in the Links section from Monday, a transcript of the Walter Kirn and Matt Taibbi discussion a Twain short story and the failure of the mythical but highly virtuous small town. While i’m not too familiar with that story they discussed, it did come across that Twain loved sticking the needle to people of wealth and means. The hypocrisy of fake virtue and perceived high ethics, it’s a gift that continues.

      Dishonesty. The highly cynical among many of us, is seemingly an either who cares or what will it matter. The lack of honesty or any perceived admittance or fault is easy to spot in a boardroom (see Boeing, the United Airlines CEO on a private flight, the Titan fiasco)…just naming a quick few without going deep into the weeds. And then there’s the leading lights of Congress…

        1. juno mas

          Twain impersonators are still keeping his wit and wisdom alive:

          McAvoy Layne, a friend of mine while residing in Carson City, NV in the late 80’s, made a nice living from his impersonations. (He’s retiring the gig later this year after 33 years.) Twain lived in Carson City and caroused the saloons of Virginia City.

          Carson City now celebrates Samuel Clemens annually with big-time events.

      1. LawnDart

        Re; Can you trust a Harvard dishonesty researcher?

        In my opinion, Putin nailed it when referring to USA, the West, as “the Empire of Lies.”

        Lying, dishonesty, seems to have become much more pervasive– a common-thread throughout our culture, as, ironically, it becomes easier to detect via the wealth of shared observation and information available on the internet. But why would people lie, and continue to lie, and risk exposure? Could it be that minimal accountability and negative consequences for lying turn this into a low-risk/high-reward behavior?

        The ruling-class brazenly lies to our faces in what seems if nothing else an aggressive demonstration of power, mocking our inability to hold those on the other side of the power-balance to account. Their servants, the climbers and graspers, mimic this behavior– monkey see, monkey do…

        It’s OK to lie to us, because we are not their equals.

        And there’s this:

        How Lying Affects The Human Brain: Telling Lies Desensitizes Amygdala To Dishonesty; Increases Chances Of Being A Pathological Liar

        A recent study in Nature Neuroscience found habitual lying can desensitize our brains from “feeling bad,” and may even encourage us to tell bigger lies in the future.

        “When we lie for personal gain, our amygdala produces a negative feeling that limits the extent to which we are prepared to lie,” said Dr. Tali Sharot, senior author of the study, director of the Affective Brain Lab at the University College of London and a faculty member of the department of Experimental Psychology, in a statement.

        However, as we continue to lie, this response fades, which may lead to a “slippery slope” where small acts of dishonesty can evolve into more significant lies. In other words, lies breed lies as the brain gets desensitized to dishonesty.

        The corruption of this particular cancer has spread to such a degree, that our only hope for survival at this point is a radical, surgical intervention.

    2. hunkerdown

      Yes, that’s all any “politics” is, a celebration of slavery to “greatness” itself.

      Any utopia that contains a class system is actually an IDEAL.

      1. semper loquitur


        Easy! Careful where you point that word! It’s been known to misfire! ;)

  9. Bosk

    The counter-narrative to that USA Today article on raw milk is that pasteurization only started in order to clean up the milk being produced by filthy industrial slaughterhouses, where little effort was made keep the cow’s milk separated from the intestinal bacteria released from the abattoir. Pasteurization (and ultra-pasteurization) isn’t about cleaning up the milk supply, it’s an industrial process that allows industrial facilities to spend LESS time and money on cleaning up the milk supply. It was never really about small farms, where milking cows and slaughtering cows are traditionally kept separate, so there’s less chance of bacteria from a cow’s intestines getting into the dairy.

    I’ll drink some raw milk now and again, and I have a few liberal-types in my circles who, like the writer of the article, like to think that drinking raw milk makes you “an anti-vax type” who is “anti-science.” I just like the taste, and milk bought directly from the producer is much more profitable for the farmer. Sandor Ellis Katz’s The Revolution Will Not be Microwaved has a good chapter on the raw milk movement. His argument is basically that Big Agriculture aggressively goes after small farmers selling their milk and vegetables because they want the public to think small agricultural production is unsafe. “Don’t eat that lettuce from your neighbor, you could die from e coli bacteria! Don’t buy food from the farmer’s market, it’s not safe!” Here in NH and Maine, you can buy raw milk directly from many health food stores, and the dairy farms often put their test results right on the web; when I lived in RI, I would drive across the border to Massachusetts, where you had to buy it direct from the farm.

    1. Lex

      Indeed. It’s an interesting facet of cannabis legalization too where the giant companies spend a lot (and spent a lot lobbying for the initial laws) that portray the old ways of growing and distributing weed as “unsafe”. Their product is tested in labs, without anyone bothering to mention how cannabis labs are the most corrupt part of the production chain.

    2. lyman alpha blob

      “….more profitable for the farmer…”

      This is very true. One cousin of mine raises a few milking cows and sells raw milk at farmer’s markets and from her house. She doesn’t sell a lot of it, but gets to set her own price for it. Her two brothers who milked 60 cows could not set their own price for the milk and relied on what the dairy would pay them, despite it being a famer owned coop. They just sold off their herd a few months ago ending the family’s 100 year run at dairy farming once the price of gas and fertilizer and grain spiked but the price of raw milk did not.

      1. Jackiebass

        Compared to corporate farms, only 60 won’t make you much money. I grew up in rural PA. All of the farms were small family owned farms. Most of them are gone. When the parents got too old to farm it, the cows were sold because the kids didn’t want to farm it. Cows need to be milked so it is a 24hr. 7 days a week, 365 days of the year job. Most of the farmers I knew had an outside job to pay the bills.Now these farms are littered with homes of city people pretending to be country folks. Every day they drive into town or the mall to work. They return to their country home after work. To me it is sad to see what has happened.

      2. Lex

        My father in law started dairy farming at 17 back in the mid-70’s. He once told me that the wholesale price he got for milk in 1977 was the same as he got when he retired in 2010(ish). All his costs went up but not his revenue. Then he had a large farm of 400 milking head, now that’s not even a “small” dairy farm.

      3. skippy

        Best part about all this is the consolidation of industry and currant self regulation approach leads too any contamination being concentrated e.g. lets blend a thousand cattle because its more efficient.

  10. Wukchumni

    Peacocks unfurling their plumage always strike me as if they are getting ready to participate in a coronation…

  11. Wukchumni

    Well-a-well-a, I just got into Nathan’s today
    To see how many hot dogs I could put away
    With Joey Chestnut running up the score
    I applied myself, in Coney Island town
    When I finally did sit down
    I find myself in more indigestion than before

    They said we couldn’t do no wrong
    No other love for tube steaks could be so strong
    They served hot dogs from the chafing dish bottom drawer
    I played my part, and forsook my kidneys
    Despite my bulging old blue dungarees
    And I’ll never be able to wear them anymore

    Now my hunger’s gone, I don’t know what to do
    I lost my urge and walked right out the door
    And if I ever again find inspiration, I know one thing for sure
    I’m going to never eat more than four

    I ended up eating seventeen
    A little on the light side these days, it seems
    But they said a bowel movement was well worth waiting for
    I took their word, I took it all
    Beneath the sign that said eat more
    Joey ended up eating four score
    Ah, oh!

    Hot Dog, by Led Zeppelin

  12. mrsyk

    re:” World’s tallest flagpole”, do read this to the end. It gets nuttier as it goes on. For instance:
    “Doak, the army veteran, knows Morrill Worcester as a humble but determined man. And though Worcester never served in the military, no one questions his patriotism. Each week, Worcester stands alongside U.S. 1 waving flags alongside a group of residents, even in blizzards and rain.”
    Ok then.

    1. Carolinian

      This is good

      Other examples of found patriotism abound in most Americans’ lives, and I believe they are what really instill filial piety in us. A professional fireworks show held year after year on Independence Day soon becomes forgettable, but drunken fireworks mistakenly set off on the Third of July are spirited and remembered for decades afterwards. “My Country ’Tis of Thee” is a joyless tune, but when bellowed out in church, its reckless claims make an Americanist of even the most measured men. Perhaps the greatest example of found patriotism is the improperly hung American flag; here is a people who love their country so fervently that they do not even bother to respect its symbols.

      Many of my neighbors hang flags from their houses but never take them down during night or rainstorms so presumably were not Boy or Girl Scouts. But even cynical me can feel moved by

      The greatest things about America are our landscapes, which we were given by accident: the Great Lakes, the Brandywine Valley, Manhattan [the American West in toto]. So it is also with our customs. The United States was conceived at a constitutional congress nearly 300 years ago, but the country’s endurance is due to accidental occurrences seen on strange vistas where rational thought dare not intrude.

      In many ways a country is like your parents. You may not always approve of them but you’ll never entirely get away from them.

  13. The Rev Kev

    “Will AI Change Our Memories?”

    The past few weeks there has been a TV ad for some sort of mobile tool that will allow you to edit photos at a touch. Birds on a beach and you don’t like birds? Gone. People. Gone. Clouds. Gone. The people on the ad were young and frothy and keen but something about it set me on edge. They were editing their memories in real time and were not taking the world as it is but making up a Disney version for themselves. It’s like they had the power to fix reality – or one small portion of it anyway – but they never gave thought to the fact that what they were editing out maybe more important down the track than what they wanted to capture. I suppose the Next Big Thing where you will talk to your camera and tell it to create a photo of you standing outside the Coliseum hugging a young, hot babe – and it will do so and then do so as a video. Not too far fetched. Well, except the bit about me and a young, hot babe. Look at this video clip of Star Wars characters – as Italians – for what can be done now- (54 secs)

    1. hunkerdown

      Papa Smurf always says, digital evidence isn’t evidence. At last we can cross off, or edit, “seeing is believing” from the tablet of conventional wisdom, and in the meantime we can edit the ruling class into and out of whatever pictures we like.

      There are a lot of tools around, generally based on the Stable Diffusion image generation model and some other kernels, to assist substantive retouching (“inpainting”: mask off a section of the image and tell it what you want to see there) and extrapolation of an image outside of its borders (“outpainting”). They compensate well for the weaknesses of text-to-image tools, where some complex detail (face, hands, joinery, surfaces, contours) in an otherwise acceptable generated image needs to be redone.

      The enthusiast community is working on video now, 8 seconds at a time. Because everyone deserves a montage, even an astronaut dog that doesn’t actually exist.

  14. flora

    Is the US over prescribing psychiatric drugs?

    Prevalence of Benzodiazepine Use 12.6 Percent in the United States
    January 3, 2019

    These are not harmless interventions. Several studies and headlines like the following:

    Benzodiazepines Linked to Long-Term Neurological Dysfunction
    – Psychology Today
    A search will bring up the link. I don’t want to over link this comment.

    Popular ‘Benzo’ drugs linked to suicide, brain damage — even if you stop taking them: study

    1. britzklieg

      you can check in but you can’t check out: getting off benzos is a long and dangerous process.

  15. saltydawg

    Re: Effectiveness of the Coronavirus Disease 2019 Bivalent Vaccine

    Also from the Abstract:
    The risk of COVID-19 also increased with time since the most recent prior COVID-19 episode and with the number of vaccine doses previously received.
    (emphasis mine)

    The relationship of vaccine doses to covid cases is graphically shown in Figure 2 of the study.

    The finding of more vaccine doses => more covid cases is discussed further in the Conclusions section, with links to other studies finding similar results.

    1. Screwball

      Here is another link about DeWine from a CBS station in Cleveland;
      Governor DeWine requests presidential disaster declaration for East Palestine


      According to a release from Gov. DeWine, Monday was the deadline set by the Federal Emergency Management Agency following a previous extension request.

      “The possibility remains that the voluntary support provided by Norfolk Southern could at some point in the future cease , and this Declaration is needed to ensure that the State and Federal government use all resources available to step in and provide the community with needed assistance.,” DeWine stated in his letter to President Biden.

      and [bold mine]

      Since the derailment, Gov. DeWine said the Ohio Emergency Management Agency has maintained frequent contact with FEMA on numerous fronts, including the potential provision of aid through FEMA.

      FEMA has consistently advised that such assistance would likely not be granted because of no unmet needs reported to the state, the release said.

      The voluntary actions of Norfolk Southern have to date reimbursed citizens and state and local governments for costs associated with damage incurred due to the train derailment.

      However, concern remains that FEMA assistance would be needed if the voluntary aid from Norfolk Southern ceases. Concern also remains regarding ongoing costs that might develop but have yet to be identified.


      The train derailed on Feb 3rd. That’s 5 months ago. IMO, a disaster should have been declared THEN. From everything I have read this town is still a toxic wasteland and crime scene. Unbelievable. So sad for those people.

  16. The Rev Kev

    “Lee did no such thing”

    Probably because he did not have the cavalry to undertake such a task. He had let JEB Stuart ride off thinking that he would scout for the Confederate Army operating blind in Pennsylvania. Instead, JEB Stuart took the best brigades with him and left two poorer quality brigades behind, both of whose commanders hated each other’s guts, and did not return until the battle was half over. No happy campers there. But what set up the battle was the action of a Union cavalry general named John Buford who decided to do a defense in depth to stop the Confederates from taking the high ground as seen here depicted in the 1993 film “Gettysburg”- (4:39 mins)

    For three days the Union held the lines and in the end they gave the Confederate Army their own Fredericksburg. Others called the Union line as the high tide mark of the Confederacy- (4:39 mins)

    1. NotTimothyGeithner

      Importantly, Grant won at Vicksburg on the 4th, effectively splitting the Confederacy.

      Meade doesn’t get the credit he really should, and the anecdote about maps shows this. He was in the process of reorganizing the army, and most of his purged units had been fighting at Gettysburg after a hard March. The former commander of the 20th Maine was promoted weeks before the battle putting him in charge of a whole Corp.

      1. ambrit

        Longstreet wanted to bypass Gettysburg entirely and menace both Washington and Baltimore from the rear, thus forcing the Union forces to come to him, not the other way around. Lee chose a more Traditional, Jumoni style assault, and the rest is history.
        A few months later, Gettysburg created the Gettysburg Address by Lincoln.
        Gettysburg Address:
        Compare this speech with the almost incomprehensible delphic utterances we get from our Politicos today.
        Stay safe.
        [Hmmm…. who have I pissed off now?]

        1. LifelongLib

          My understanding is that was the Confederates’ original plan — get a good defensive position between the Union army and Washington which would force the Union army to attack. Once the Union army was annihilated the Confederates thought Lincoln would have to make peace. Supposedly Lee was carrying a letter from Jefferson Davis to Lincoln stating the Confederates’ terms.

      2. ilsm

        Meade retained command of the army of the Potomac thru the remainder of the rebellion, even though grant as the new lt general was with that army…..

        Meade was an engineer, maps and topograph essential to the military engineer trade

        Lee was engineer as well, by this time he had run army of Northern Virginia for two years.

        To see Lee at Gettysburg I want to consider Lee at: Seven Days, Second Manassas, Fredericksburg (?), Antietam, Chancellorsville

        Lee was apt to improvise and act out of character.

        Early reporting reflected neither understood the Roundtops until Warren, the engineer for Meade stood there and caught its value, and anticipated Lee sending Longstreet corps, who was late jumping off.

        Further, Culp Hill battles ran as climatically as any about Cemetary Ridge.

        I will walk the field again, before I am too old!

    2. Lambert Strether Post author

      > Probably because he did not have the cavalry to undertake such a task. He had let JEB Stuart ride off thinking that he would scout for the Confederate Army operating blind in Pennsylvania. Instead, JEB Stuart took the best brigades with him and left two poorer quality brigades behind, both of whose commanders hated each other’s guts, and did not return until the battle was half over.

      This implies that Lee couldn’t have selected the very few cavalrymen it would have taken to survey the battlefield terrain from those you admit he had available to him. IIRC, Meade improvised a sort of staff ride. He didn’t send out an entire unit. Lee could certainly have done the same, had he been minded to do so. It didn’t take many soldiers, it didn’t take long, and the area surveyed was not great.

    3. LifelongLib

      Maybe it’s only because it was photographed and not just painted, but the U.S. Civil War feels like it happened day before yesterday, while the not much earlier Revolution is like ancient history:

    4. The Rev Kev

      A true story based on documentary evidence. The night before the disastrous Picket’s Charge-

      General Lee: I have hit them on the left and I have hit them on the right. So tomorrow I will launch an all-out attack on their center as they will be thinned out there as they would have sent forces from there to reinforce their wings.

      General Meade: He has hit me on the left and hit me on the right. I think that he will hit me in the center tomorrow so I will concentrate my infantry and artillery there.

      1. Lambert Strether Post author

        Meade was the better general, and the Union Army (finally) the better Army. That’s why Lee and the Confederates lost the Battle of Gettysburg.

  17. The Rev Kev

    “How to keep your dogs calm during the fireworks on July 4 – from cuddles and treats to calming music and pheromone collars”

    Some places they are substituting laser shows instead of fireworks. But those are sending the cats crazy.

  18. The Rev Kev

    “What to Know About a Seemingly Fake Form in a Supreme Court Gay Rights Case”

    Sounds like they are not going to do anything about that bogus document but is that wise? Can you feed in bs documents into a case going before the Supreme Court that has the potential to tip a judgment, one way or another? Doesn’t matter that it played only a minor art in that case. It could have been a major one and the next time it my very well do so. Why do I say next time? Because if there are no investigations and nobody going to trial for fabricating evidence in a Supreme Court case, this only guarantees that it will happen again.

    1. flora

      The Court may have to hire extra clerks to vet all supporting “documents” to the cases.

  19. Sutter Cane

    I grew up on a family dairy farm and drank raw milk up until I turned 18 and went to college. I didn’t notice any magical health benefits – I was sick as much as any of the other kids at school who weren’t drinking raw milk every day. My parents were fine with drinking the milk that they had produced in a raw state, because they trusted that it was clean. However, they wouldn’t have drunk the milk from some of our neighbor’s farms if you paid them, as they didn’t trust them to keep to the same standards of cleanliness.

    As raw milk is sold in the same health food stores that still sell homeopathic remedies and other junk, and given that the first half of my life spent drinking raw milk didn’t turn me into any kind of superman, I can’t help but view the claims of health benefits of raw milk as so much snake oil. Given the risks of getting bad milk, it seems like a foolish choice, for people who want to think they have some secret knowledge that “big dairy,” or “big AG” or whatever don’t want them to know about.

  20. Mikel

    “The Sun Sets On Richard N. Haass’s CFR Career” Simplicius the Thinker(s)

    “As mentioned, the CFR is arguably the oldest of American proto-globalist institutions. It partly had its start in the days of WW1 as the brainchild of Woodrow Wilson called ‘The Inquiry’, which was tasked with coming up with ways of favorably redrawing the map of post-WW1 Europe and the world…”

    Has any President and administration implemented or been a part of implementing into existence as many vile ideas as Woodrow Wilson? And they are the kind that
    metastasize like a cancer.

  21. converger

    Elliot Abrams is a toxic blight on the foreign policy landscape, from to blowing the opportunity for a comprehensive nuclear weapons ban with Gorbachev under Reagan, to Iran-Contra under Bush I, to Iraq under Bush II, to Venezuela under Trump. Elliott Abrams was instrumental in driving the decades of US bad faith, across both Republican and Democratic administrations, that created Putin and his Russian imperialist ambitions after the US left Russia to drown in the 1990s. He does not deserve respect. He deserves to rot in hell.

    1. pretzelattack

      Abrams is a prime dirtbag, never forget his shilling for the death squads in El Salvador, and the massacres they perpetrated. But Putin doesn’t have imperialistic ambitions. The US drowned Russia, and that created a backlash in Russia against the US. Putin helped push back on that, although I’m still not clear on how much influence the US sympathetic oligarch’s retain in Russia.

  22. Lambert Strether Post author

    From a pro-UKrainian OSINT account:

    Vilnius is July 11-12 (Tuesday-Wednesday). So indeed this week would be a good time for a Zaporizhzia false flag, which ideally would occur before Friday to mesh with the American news cycle.

    1. Skip Intro

      A few weeks back the FSB reportedly intercepted a shipment of stolen radioactive cesium that was intended to spread near the ZNPP to generate an appropriate signature. It is probably meant for the US nuke-sniffer plane that recently arrived in our EU colonies.

    2. Lex

      The chatter has been getting louder, consistently, for too long. I’m starting to come around to the idea that the proposed attack is actually nuclear blackmail against the US. “Give us more and let us into NATO or we’ll blow up ZNPP.”

      Desperation is setting in on Bankova street.

    3. Katniss Everdeen

      I can’t believe you posted this. Obviously many cannot see the “show more” which could be “fortuitous.”

      This (I hope this link goes through) was posted by Illargi in the comments section at The Automatic Earth this morning. I honestly did not know what to make of it.

      Banks, stock markets, fed offices all closed today. (god only knows what’s going on “after hours” at the stock market right now.) Vilnius coming up.

      I can’t remember if Douglas MacGregor’s latest interview was posted here, but he made some pretty dire predictions about the 2024 elections and bank closures in the last couple of days.

      Gotta admit, this sounds pretty sinister.

      1. Lambert Strether Post author

        > I can’t believe you posted this

        In a good way, I assume. This is exactly the sort of chatter we should pay attention to.

        The material after the show more reads: “The backup plan is a Tochka-U filled with radiactive substances”, followed by three clown-face emojis.

        It’s Ukrainre OSINT, as I said. FWIW! However, after all the mainstream propaganda, to which I have been regularly linking, it’s important to see something more “real time,” false-flag, false-false-flag,
        or false-false-false-flag though it be.

    4. ThirtyOne

      Handy advise from Terror_Alert:
      GET INSIDE: If warned of a radiation hazard, immediately get inside the nearest building and move away from windows. Put as many walls between you and the outside to protect you from the radiation outside.
      If not possible, try to expose yourself to the source of the radiation and die fast. Dying from the symptoms is a painful death.

    5. Lambert Strether Post author

      > a Zaporizhzia false flag

      Big Serge weighs in:

      Thing is, Big Z needs a stunt before Vilnius very badly. All the Zaporizhzia propaganda could be a feint, I suppose. Low cunning. But what else do they do? Suicide bombers at the Kremlin? An anthrax attack in the Moscow subway? Kidnapping a train and holding it hostage? What?

      1. ambrit

        ‘They’ll’ do the traditional thing and fling a hand full of propagit against a wall and hope that some of it sticks.
        First thing to worry about is if that NATO ‘radioactives sniffing’ plane is “mistakenly” shot down, by either side.
        Second, if Airborne troops are flown to the power plant to “secure it” against the wily Russians. Who are already there. Hmmm…..
        Third, if NATO aircraft are sent in to secure a “no fly zone” over the plant, “for safety’s sake.”
        Fourth, if, using the “incident” as a motivation, NATO troops are sent into the Ukraine to “secure” the other nuclear power stations against further “Russian terrorism.”
        Anyway you look at it, we are on a steady flight into terrain.
        Stay safe. Get your anti-radiation supplies stocked and staged. If this goes nuclear, as all the previous war games have demonstrated, it will go full on Intercontinental Nuclear Exchange.
        As the clergyman Amalric said in 1209; “Kill them all. G– will know his own.”
        The reference is apposite because what is happening in the Ukraine now has all the earmarks of a latter day Crusade.

  23. GramSci

    «The Wall Street Journal has a new article out about how US war veterans are no longer recommending their kids join the military, which is cutting the war machine off from an important recruitment “pipeline” because the children of military families make up the majority of military recruits. … “Deeper problems soldiers report include moldy barracks, harassment, lack of adequate child care and not enough support for mental health issues such as suicide.” … One recruiter is quoted as saying “To be honest with you it’s Wendy’s, it’s Carl’s Jr., it’s every single job that a young person can go up against because now they are offering the same incentives that we are offering, so that’s our competition right now.” … I view these as positive developments. Hopefully everyone stops enlisting in the world’s most murderous military.»

    What Caitlin, an Aussie, fails to understand is that Carl’s Jr. is a fast-food chain that panders to African Americans. The Great American Jobs Guarantee of yore, the U.S. Army, is now dirt floor slave quarters. The Jobs Guarantee has moved on to the media and college-educated drone jockeys sitting at desks in Northern Virginia.

    1. britzklieg

      Given its ubiquitous global perniciousness, seems like our fast food will kill off the “other” before our fat soldiers will…

  24. Mikel

    “The Wagner ‘Coup’ Was Staged by Putin—and the West Fell for It ” Newsweek

    However any particular situation is perceived, the relationship with Wagner is foreboding for Russia.

  25. SD

    RE: Masshole Firearms:

    Massachusetts is not the progressive monolith it’s often depicted as by the mainstream media (even the Boston Globe) in terms of both its polity and politics. One example: Scott Brown winning Ted Kennedy’s senate seat back in 2010.

    Massachusetts is very Catholic, and there are profound class divides among urban, suburban, and rural areas here that mirror New York State in many ways, though on a smaller scale.

    The conservative American Gentry is alive and well in all corners of Massachusetts. The caricature of Boston and its many universities and colleges as a liberal stronghold often obscures that. The Kennedys that really mattered are long gone.

    There is a communitarianism that I’ve seen and experienced in my little rural corner of the state that I think helps keep us more or less even-keeled. It’s a good place to live, but we’re not immune to the problems that affect the rest of the country.

    1. Late Introvert

      The 2.5 years I lived in Boston from ’88 to ’91 sure disabused this person’s notions of MA being a redoubt of liberalism, unless you mean racist and rude. But they sure feel superior to all of us in flyover.

      1. NotTimothyGeithner

        Dad always said replace “liberal” with “reactionary” when talking about Massachusetts.

        1. Late Introvert

          Nice. I sure hope my daughter quotes me some day. That is the ultimate honor.

  26. hunkerdown

    US: The beatings will continue until morale improves.
    China: [giggles in LED material] Please, hurt me more!

    China curbs critical metal exports in retaliation for Western restrictions on chip industry (SCMP)

    Gallium nitride is a very common material for visible LEDs and has been for decades. It is a byproduct of alumina mining, and the preponderance of aluminium mines are in the Russian parts of Ukraine. Now China is mediating exports of refined and processed gallium. Matter is prior to ideas…

  27. Jeff W

    Why are interest rate rises not taming inflation? FT

    Chartered accountant and political economist Richard Murphy gave his take (an MMT interpretation) on why increasing interest rates is not taming inflation on Owen Jones’s YouTube channel about two weeks ago:

    I actually think that putting up of England now is actually in itself creating inflation and I’ll say quite bluntly that I don’t think the Bank of England does understand inflation or how it’s created in the modern economy and that they have got all their assumptions wrong.

    People now rent from private landlords and the moment we have now got an interest rate rise up goes the rent and for many people that’s 30 to 40 percent of their income if they’re in rental accommodation. It‘s also true that interest is reflected in many other prices in a way the Bank of England just doesn’t understand. Yet 90% of all cars bought now are on car leases but a car lease is just a loan by any other name and, of course, if your interest rates go up, the price of car leases goes up. If you buy from a large company—large companies are financed by debt—if the interest rate goes up, the company pushes up the price to recover the cost of its extra interest. It wants to still make a profit. The Bank of England just doesn’t understand these transmission mechanisms so that every time they put up interest rate they push up prices.

  28. JB

    Waterford Whispers News (Irish version of The Onion) ‘apologizes’ for offending the Church of Scientology:

    Background being CoS accusing WWN of ‘hate speech’, as Ireland is about to enact free speech threatening hate speech laws:

  29. John Beech

    Regarding MLS listings, when we sold our home in North Carolina 20 years, or so, ago, I determined to sell it myself. Like how much work could it possibly be? So a few photos, a quickie web page on a server, plus a dozen bandit signs, and presto.

    Only problem? Real estate agents stealing my bandit signs! Ended up making another dozen.

    Anyway, I sold the home inside of two weeks – no commission. Why? Because it’s not rocket science! Buyer arranged for an inspector (in his interest since caveat emptor always holds true), their check cleared (my interest), and we were done! Easy peasy.

    Realtors? I believe price fixing is the real sin of the MLS system, not commissions.

    Here’s all I did, link to page.

    You’re welcome to download the page and substitute your pwn photos and copy as a template.

    1. juno mas

      Yes, I did the same thing selling a summer home on Lake Almanor, CA. The real work of transferring/selling a house is done by the Title company. They insure clear title. If Seller is upfront on property condition there usually are no subsequent issues.

      Dealing with looky-loos can be an issue in your primary residence (if your still living there) but my summer house sold in the winter. This was 20 years ago before the wildfires devastated the surroundings.

    2. Oh

      Good job John! If you’d used a realtor you’d have not only given them a commission but you’d have had the pleasure of being inconvenienced to show the house at the realtor’s whim and pleasure usually at short notice!

  30. mrsyk

    Remember when we used to share music and stories on the holidays?
    Here are some bands that to check out, no links.

    Los Punsetes (Madrid post punk)
    Mallet Brothers (Maine rock, recommended to those who like The Dead)
    Saints and Liars (Vermont country rock fusion)
    Hello Mary (NYC all girl post punk)
    Hermanos Gutierrez (Mexico dark thematic mood music)

  31. Willow

    Russia being so brazen as to play the Wagner ‘Coup’ just shows how much a liability a senile president is & how adversaries (including UK & Poland) are playing this to their advantage. Pentagon likely scared shitless Biden is going to do something really really stupid.

    1. ambrit

      If the Pentagon could refuse the orders of Trump, even if sub-rosa, (such as his directive to remove all American troops from Syria, which order was ignored,) then they can do the same to Biden.
      The problems will come from the younger cadres of officers who have no experience of fighting a credible foe. I heard exactly this riding the bus yesterday. The subject of Russia in the Ukraine came up. Three separate people said that the Russian troops were badly trained and cowardly, or badly led, and that the Ukrainian Army was now the best land force in the world. When I asked where these people had learned their facts, I was told that such was common knowledge and universal on the news media channels. The people saying these things were of different races, ages, and genders. The Propaganda is working.
      “Burn it with fire,” is taking on an entirely new meaning.

      1. Yves Smith

        You probably know they directly ignored his orders (which per Douglas Macgregor were papered up properly) to leave Afghanistan. And per Macgregor, the timing (winter 2020-21) would have been much better. Tribes up in the hills then, so there would have been no scenes in Kabul and more civilians who’d gotten in deep with Americans would have been able to exit safely.

        1. ambrit

          Seriously, wouldn’t that rise to the definition of a coup? I doubt that mutiny would be the right word. Since the President is legally Commander in Chief, the offending officers would be guilty of disobeying orders. Either way, the primacy of the civilian command is subverted. I do come off as being a bit hypocritical in that I am advocating for the same disobeying of orders by serving officers. In my defense, when the End of the World is on offer, some rules should be ‘bendable.’
          Stay safe.

  32. Tom Stone

    The recklessness already demonstrated by the Biden Administration should scare the crap out of every one, We have never been closer to a Nuclear exchange than we are RIGHT NOW.

  33. Amfortas the hippie

    been idly trolling the web elsewhere, today(wilderness bar, cooking dead animals)
    came across this…

    which was the same conclusion, re; the amurkin right, that i came to, some 20 years ago….that its not just about undoing the New Deal…but the frelling Enlightenment, itself.
    Moldbug/Yarvin, et alia, are just the first honest “conservatives” in a long time, who dont couch their desires in pretty(?!) liberalish words.
    social structure of 1100AD, with all the modern toys and conveniences reserved for the chosen few(how very calvinist).
    but $40 is 2/3 of a carton of cigs, dammit…so it might hafta wait til i sell some sheep.
    i first came across Matt McManus on Areo.
    some years ago.
    wish he was closer than michigan,lol.
    theres a place by the fire…

    1. Amfortas the hippie

      remember when “Ranch Style Beans” useta have “husband pleasin'” with a dagwood style bust of a smiling, supposedly typical american husband on it?
      just noticed it aint there, as i was washing the can(for scooping chick crumbles and whatnot…waste not!)
      made a crackly boudin mess in the skillet on the fire, grilled ordinary local link sausages(central texas’ version of polska kielbasa) with the cheese and jalepenos(“japs” in cafe parlance) already in them, and some really good cheese stuffed bacon wrapped shrimps that could not have been done by machine, in spite of the low cost.
      started with a margarita with tequila from my buddy from Queretero.
      then texas’ own shiner bock.
      and thinking about all y’all, scattered over the world.
      my distributed think tank.
      happy fourth, for what its worth.
      Downal wyth Bluddy Behg Hid!

    2. JBird4049

      >>>social structure of 1100AD,

      Yes, but there was still a belief in noblesse obliges, which often many people believed. Heck, the feudal knights often led the charge. During World War One the leaders of that age and of the British, French, German, Austro-Hungarian, and IIRC the Russian empires were all expected to personally send themselves and/or their sons into the fight. Aside from losing most of the fighting age males of this entire, they also lost the sons of the leadership.

      As only the upper classes were considered truly good enough to be officers and as it was normal, even necessary, for the lieutenants and captains, often even the majors and colonels over the top. Lieutenants historically have the highest casualties as they have to be seen and move about to do their job whereas everyone else either has more distance from the front or can pay more attention to not being killed.

      This is not to say that they were angels or even good, but like the Greatest Generation had, there was some sense of community and the obligations that went from the individual to that community and from the community to the individual; this is something that the culturally and physically aware conservatives and the more holistic leftists/liberals tend to be concerned about and which the modern elites from the small town to the country and really of Western Civilization either ignore, or worse, are ignorant of.

      I am rehashing all this to point out that historically one very important way that the ruling class stayed in power and all the perks was to put real efforts in governing for benefit of their whole community and if needed, put their posteriors in danger. Yes, it was often an ignored fairytale, but often it was true enough to matter.

      I don’t see any of our betters even making a pretense of any obligations, responsibilities, duties, or even considerations at all. They seem to care for nothing beyond what they want, nor of any recognition of the harms that are the results of their actions. They have all the worse qualities of past ruling classes with none of their virtues.

      This is certainly an exaggeration, but honestly, they all need to go.

    3. Henry Moon Pie

      It sounds like you’re making the best of the heat.

      I’ll have to admit some of Deneen resonates with me. Mill as the leader of an elitist cultural vanguard rings pretty true. And I’m not so sure the Enlightenment is serving us too well right now. It always had this strong tinge of hubris to it, and now that’s proving deadly. Sulfur in the sky with diamonds.

      From the review, I had some trouble with all that talk about “equality and freedom” as the only proper goals. It’s pretty rich to talk about equality in a society in which the billionaires’ jets and yachts are getting bigger right along with the homeless camps. And freedom is no more than the freedom to buy. Otherwise, shut up and get back on your hamster wheel.

      Defending much about our Business As Usual is no easy task. More and more people seem to be at the point of “anything but what we’ve got.”

  34. LawnDart

    “First of all, I congratulate our anti-aircraft warriors, the warriors of the anti-aircraft missile troops of the Ukrainian Air Force, who are celebrating their hoilday today…”

    Is Zelinsky openly acknowledging US troops/contractors participation in the war? Not like it’s a secret or anything, but it would seem to up the ante:


    The NATO Summit in Vilnius is one week away and the situation in Ukraine grows worse with each passing day. One indicator that things are grim is the confirmation today, by the usually effervescent Volodymyr Zelensky, that Russia launched a successful strike on the Ukrainian Intelligence Service (SBU) headquarters in Sumy.

  35. juno mas

    RE” Water: six Colorado Counties

    The photo of the center pivot irrigation shows water being used to grow—alfalfa! The Counties are concerned that water diverted out of County will be used for drinking water supply?

  36. skippy

    Per the China metals thingy ….

    Francesco Sassi
    🇨🇳China’s decision to restrict critical mineral exports (germanium and gallium) will hit key sectors in the 🇪🇺European Union’s effort to decarbonize its economy. This also demonstrates the limits of western aspirations to shift supply chains beyond the reach of policymakers in🇨🇳

    Still scratching my head about the sanctions on computing and defense related products by the U.S. as the materials to make them are mostly from China, hence the sanctions would be moot if supply was restricted or banned.

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