Links 8/31/2023

Exclusive: In a first, Iranian surgeons reattach man’s head to neck successfully PressTV (Anthony L)

US FDA warns 3 baby formula makers to correct manufacturing process controls Reuters (Kevin W)


At Yale’s Long COVID Clinic, Lisa Sanders Is Trying It All New York Magazine (furzy)

England brings forward Covid booster vaccinations to counter new sub-variant Financial Times

Role of Tofisopam in Post COVID Neuro-psychiatric Sequelae: A Case Series Sage Jounals. Userfriendly: “Not a huge n but looks promising. not approved in the US yet, but it is in Europe.”


The 7 climate tipping points that could change the world forever Grist (Chuck L)

Finding Hope In The Dark Power Of Fungus NOMEA (Anthony L)

Deadly Idalia barrels through Georgia and the Carolinas with 9ft tides breaching seawall in Charleston, roads turned into rivers, homes flooded and THOUSANDS without power Daily Mail

Fatal mistake: Intergenerational report misleads on climate risks Pearls & Irritations (Anthony L)

EPA Removes Federal Protections For Most of the Country’s Wetlands NPR

Two Australian States Are At Risk Of Blackouts This Summer OilPrice


US chip war not enough to deter China’s military ambitions Asia Times (Kevin W)

Factories May Be Leaving China, but Trade Ties Are Stronger Than They Seem New York Times

They would not listen to us’: inside Arizona’s troubled $53bn chip plant Guardian (Kevin W). A chapter in the chip wars.

Japan plus South Korea equals AUKUS+2 Asia Times (Kevin W)



Why Gabon’s coup plotters can count on popular support Guardian

Gabon: how the Bongo family’s 56-year rule has hurt the country and divided the opposition The Conversation (Kevin W)

Old Blighty

Do not heat your homes in the evenings, net zero quango tells public Telegraph

European Disunion

“Value-based communication”: Baerbock now wants undiplomatic diplomats Freidliche Loesungren, via machine translation (Micael T). Trump was lambasted for this sort of thing by being Trump. But now it’s a virtue?

The Greens and the traitors Tobias Riegel, via machine translation. Micael T: “The word traitor is bubbling in in German politics.”

English language use gets a boost in Germany DW (Dr. Kevin)

New Not-So-Cold War

SITREP 8/30/23: Ukraine Smokescreens Failures With Meaningless Deep-strikes Simplicius the Thinker

Scott Ritter: Ukraine’s Fate Sealed Long Before Failing Counteroffensive Scott Ritter

From Ukraine/Russia Front Lines – w/Patrick Lancaster, Independent Journalist Judge Napolitano, YouTube

NO HOPE FOR PEACE IN UKRAINE — ONLY A WAR WITH THE UNITED STATES AND NATO Larry Johnson. We’ve said this from early on. There is no bargaining overlap. Russia will determine when it stops and what it does then. The factors arguing against the “war with Russia” scenario is 1. The China hawks, who are powerful and becoming better positioned via Charles Brown becoming head of the Joint Chief, do not want the US to shoot its wad against Russia; 2. The upcoming elections and the increasing unpopularity of Ukraine spending in the US means at least no big moves until after then; 3. The real possibility of the hawks in Poland being voted out this fall would severely impair any US plan for escalation. There are also reports that even Blinken is having doubts about Ukraine, which further suggests that this piece is a plant by Russia hawks to promote the notion that there is more unanimity about doing more than there really is.

Prigozhin’s Death: Yet Another US Delusion Bites the Dust Antiwar (Carolinian)

A day at the beach … in a war zone CNN (ma)

Insights from an Insider: Everything about Russia you’ve always wanted to know but can’t learn from the mainstream media. Eastern Angle (Micael T)

EU imports of Russian liquified gas leap by 40% since Ukraine invasion Guardian

Debunking German Propaganda’s Absurd Bullshit Cover Story Claiming Ukrainians Destroyed Nord Stream Pipelines to Deflect From US Responsibility to Avoid NATO Rift Mark Sleboda

Luxurious Villa owned by Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelenskyy’s Family Discovered On Egyptian Coast Punch (Anthony L)


Saudi Arabia: Man Sentenced to Death for Tweets Human Rights Watch (furzy)

Big Brother is Watching You Watch

MTA Website ‘Feature’ Lets You Track Subway Riders’ Locations 404media

UK government seeks expanded use of AI-based facial recognition by police Financial Times (Kevin W)

Ulez expanded to include whole of outer London BBC (Kevin W)

Hackers Shut Down 2 of the World’s Most Advanced Telescopes Space

Imperial Collapse Watch

Liberalism’s sin was born in the Cold War Unherd

Strategies Against BRICS German Foreign Policy (Micael T). That was fast.

Even The Bald Eagle’s Call Is Propaganda Caitlin Johnstone (Kevin W)


Jack Smith’s Team Grilled Witnesses About Rudy Giuliani’s Drinking Rolling Stone (furzy)

Kenneth Chesebro’s risky ideas might sink him Washington Post (furzy)


Majority of Voters Are Skeptical of Possible Biden Impeachment – Poll Sputnik

What if Biden Backs Out of the Race? Real Clear Wire

Democrats en éshabillé

Feinstein is a silent character in her sad and messy final chapter Politico

GOP Clown Car

US Military Intervention in Mexico Would Be a Disaster History Legends

Our No Longer Free Press

Gofundme freezes Grayzone fundraiser ‘due to some external concerns’ Grayzone (Micael T)

Mastodon’s Next Major Release Enables Full-Text Search We Distribute. Paul R:” I remember Lambert was complaining about not having this.”

Free Speech Challenges to the Inflation Reduction Act JAMA

The Bezzle

Crypto Startup Bankrupt After Losing Password to $38.9M Crypto Wallet 404Media. Paul R: “Oh noes.”

An Apple TV+ production company is dodging bills in Finland Apple Insider (Micael T)

Guillotine Watch

How Musk, Thiel, Zuckerberg, and Andreessen—Four Billionaire Techno-Oligarchs—Are Creating an Alternate, Autocratic Reality Vanity Fair (Paul R)

Class Warfare

Labor Dept. Proposes Vast Expansion of Overtime Eligibility New York Times. Kevin W: “Is ‘Eligibility’ the same as ‘access’?”

Craig Murray: Destitution Capitalism ConsortiumNews (furzy)

More than 80,500 Michiganders lost Medicaid coverage in June alone Detroit Free Press (ma)

Antidote du jour. An overdue publication from mgl: “Common chaffinch singing in Queenstown (NZ) Gardens.”

See yesterday’s Links and Antidote du Jour here.

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  1. griffen

    Dang it all. Where is that paper napkin with all the passwords and the three answers to those ridiculous nonsense questions!! Now we’ll never get access again to that crypto vault. Who knows where Billy in IT went to elementary school in 1997?

    It’s just too, too funny.

    1. doug

      Also quite convenient. Better than ‘my dog ate it’?
      Billy in IT might know all? But where is Billy?

      1. britzklieg

        Wells Fargo Ordered to Pay 3.7 Billion for Array of Violations

        “According to the CFPB, Wells Fargo customers had their vehicles wrongly possessed, were illegally charged erroneous fees and interest charges on auto and home loans and were also charged “unlawful” overdraft fees. More than 16 million consumer accounts were affected, the agency says.”

      2. Dr. John Carpenter

        I got fired from an IT job once essentially because I was asking too many questions and making too many waves about all the piss poor ways they were handling things such as security, passwords, etc. A few months after, someone called me saying they were locked out of a system and apparently I was the only one who knew the password. I greatly enjoyed telling them that although I couldn’t remember it off the top of my head, my consulting fee was $50/hour and I’m sure it would only take me three or four hours to remember it. That put a quick end to the phone calls.

      3. Jon Cloke

        A friend of mine actually did ‘my dog ate it’ at school once, and brought in a large, circular ball of very damp-looking yellow paper to ‘prove’ it…

        Whole class wet themselves.

  2. Terry Flynn

    The “don’t heat your house in evening” piece may well be dumb in places in the light of existing UK housing stock but I found it more interesting for stimulating thinking on potential changes in new-builds (or retrofitting) to allow practices known elsewhere. For instance, I really had to train myself to put all the blackout blinds down & close all windows before leaving for work in my unit in Sydney when I moved down under. Windows and blinds were only opened at night to allow cool air in. The temperature was a lovely 15-17 degrees celcius max when I woke up and by “closing up the unit”, the blazing sunshine didn’t make the place an oven when I was at work.

    This practice has more limited effectiveness once you get into the Western suburbs, I know, but the more frequent unbearably hot (yeah yeah I know there’ve been none recently in UK!) days have made me educate family here back in UK about how to stop the house retaining heat (and conversely how best to retain heat on cold days) without resorting to electricity/gas hungry methods.

    1. The Rev Kev

      I lived for a while in England a coupla times and have experienced how the winters could not only be cold but could be damp as well. With all this irregular heating, I wonder if it will have an effect on older building with more damp getting into the building itself.

      1. paul

        One problem is if you turn off the heating at night and there is a cold snap leading to burst pipes, UK insurance companies will not pay up will not pay up.
        So if you want to avoid this, drain down your hot and cold water system each time you turn off the heating.

        1. Robert Gray

          Erm … the degree of shelter / protection provided by a typical house — even a poorly-insulated one — is such that it would probably take an outside temperature of -10 C before the residual heat of the day is overcome and the water in the pipes even begins to think about freezing. That would require an awfully severe (and sudden) cold ‘snap’ to achieve. I don’t imagine even the ‘turn off the heat at night’ crowd are talking about situations when the expected temperature will drop below +10 C.

          (I apologise if the Telegraph article addresses this issue but since it’s behind a paywall …)

    2. Lexx

      We have to work out our routine (remember) every spring how to best keep the house cool. It’s slightly less about keeping the daytime heat out than the night time cool in. It only works because one or both of us is home all day.

      Air conditioning off at night, windows and skylights open, house and ceiling fans running on low… the cooler night time air fills the house which is slightly lower than the thermostat by day (72 and remember, this is Colorado, we’re at a mile high). As the temp comes up mid-morning, we close everything facing the east, then at 71 we close all doors and windows and turn on the air-conditioner. Our utility bills tells us this is working, our bills have gone down, but over the years we’ve also done a lot in insulating. Retrofitting is really the best solution. We looked into a whole house air exchange but it was not a good fit for us.

      1. outside observer

        Our ac doesn’t kick in until 78f. We dress like it’s summer in the summer. In winter heater doesn’t kick in until 68f. We dress like it’s winter in the winter. We try not to fight the seasons too hard and that seems to keep the bills reasonable.

      2. Posaunist

        We live in Denver. Just had a good rooftop (whole house) evaporative cooler installed. It is capable of getting the house below 70 F (21 C) on a 100 F (38 C) day, but we don’t drive it that hard. At night we sometimes turn it off with windows open, sometimes just run the fan on low, depending on outside temperature. No reason for expensive, environmentally unfriendly, air conditioning here.

        I think the role of air conditioning on global heating is greatly underestimated. It allows people to live in places which are too hot for comfort, and masks the reality of the situation.

  3. The Rev Kev

    “Feinstein is a silent character in her sad and messy final chapter ”

    ‘The stakes for her party are huge. If she were to step down before her term ends in early 2025, Senate Republicans have said they would prevent another Democrat from taking her place on the Judiciary Committee to block President Joe Biden’s federal court appointments. The Democrats lack the 60 votes needed to change committee assignments.’

    This sounds a lot like the situation that happened with Justice Ruth Bader Ginsburg where she refused to stand down for a younger candidate that would be aligned with Democrats but endured in office until she died at 87 leaving behind a vacancy that Trump filled with a Republican friendly Amy Coney Barrett.

      1. Mark Gisleson

        Lost several trade paperback picture books of that movie when the fire fighters hosed down my bookstore in ’82 thinking that was where the smoke was coming from (close, it was the appliance repair shop across the hall). The Dark Crystal was underappreciated at the time, strangely even more so now altho if memory serves me right, it does drag at times (Skeksis move very slowly).

    1. Dr. John Carpenter

      I’m pretty sure I read here that Pelosi and others (one of Feinstein’s relatives with aspirations?) don’t want here to step down because Newsome will likely appoint someone to replace her they didn’t approve of. Didn’t see that mentioned in the article…hmm…

      “Friends and longtime political allies say they are pained to see Feinstein’s legacy tarnished by a feud between well-off relatives over what’s, essentially, degrees of wealth.”

      Oh, I don’t know. I’d say a bunch of spoiled richies children and cousins fighting over degrees of wealth is 100% appropriate for her legacy.

    1. icancho

      The beautiful chaffinch is native to Eurasia, but was introduced from UK to NZ some time in the 19th century, and is now established there as one of NZ’s most widespread and abundant species.
      Chaffinch trivia: Swedish naturalist Karl Linnaeus named this bird Fringilla coelebs; ‘fringilla‘ is Latin for ‘finch’, while ‘coelebs‘ means ‘bachelor’. Linnaeus assigned this epithet since, during the Swedish winter, the female birds migrate south, leaving most males in their ‘bachelor’ isolation.

      1. digi_owl

        Explains my mental whiplash when it felt so familiar yet the image source said NZ.

        And that name explanation hits close to the modern Nordic life, as everyone that can afford it seem to head to the riviera the second there the weather turns cold and dark.

    1. The Rev Kev

      Wonder how far this will go before it was finished. I still remember how once upon a time three plainclothes cops arrested five guys in the middle of a burglary and I bet of people still remember where that ended up. Not the same level here obviously but a lot more things are coming to light about what was happening in this town and the people involved. It’s not over yet.

  4. flora

    An aside: I cringe whenever I hear or read about someone who claims to stand on their Constitutional rights being mocked with the phrase “but, mah rights’. The courts will decide if their rights claims are valid. Mocking the idea of standing on Constitutional rights is something the guys who want to do away with those rights use in argument, imo. You know, the same guys who think elections are bad for democracy, and the 1st Amendment is ok in theory but needs limits.

    1. The Rev Kev

      What grinds my gear is the one that says that if you are doing nothing wrong, then you should be not worried about all the governmental and corporate surveillance going on implying that only criminals are worried about their privacy.

      1. Jeff V

        Whereas of course, everything that the government does needs to be shrouded in the utmost secrecy so that we can all enjoy the “security” the government provides us with. Anyone who thinks differently is a foreign agent, a traitor and/or a useful idiot.

        1. The Rev Kev

          It has been said that the purpose of the UK’s Official Secrets Act is not to protect the secrets of the UK but to protect the secrets of the officials. :)

          Hence that line from “Yes Minister” about leaking secrets- ‘That’s another of those irregular verbs, isn’t it? I give confidential press briefings; you leak; he’s being charged under section 2A of the Official Secrets Act.’

    2. mrsyk

      “The courts will decide if their rights claims are valid.” Not just the courts. I grew up in flyover country. Small towns tend to be more “tightly knit” and have long memories, everybody knows everybody. Marion County’s citizens will, in the way of rural communities, also render a verdict here. IMO, Cody is finished. His reputation is stained and time won’t wash it out. County Sheriff (elected) Jeff Soyez, Magistrate Judge Laura Viar (appointed) and Town of Marion Mayor David Mayfield (elected) should take note.

  5. Lexx

    ‘Even The Bald Eagle’s Call Is Propaganda Caitlin Johnstone’

    ‘This fact is the single most American thing in the known universe. It’s more American than talking loudly at tourist attractions. It’s more American than a Bible covered in ranch dressing fingerprints. It’s more American than a Marvel movie about superheroes drinking Mountain Dew in monster trucks. It’s more American than a deep-fried aircraft carrier.’

    Oh please, Americans don’t need a tourist attraction to talk loudly. They do that everywhere and at all times. It’s their measure for having fun. It wasn’t loud? Well, they just weren’t into it and left making even more noise walking back out the door. We’re best defined by ‘attention-seeking commotion’ anywhere on the planet.

    If you’re deaf and want to find the Americans in a crowd, look for the added clues of physical clumsiness and failure to make eye contact with those who don’t look genetically ‘familial’ or showing the colors of tribal-approved allies. They’re the ones expressing surprise as they run right into ‘strangers’, like ‘where the hell did that come from?’, and by ‘that’, they mean you.

    We’ve been hearing a lot of vocalizations from this year’s crop of young red-tailed hawks. Note the difference between adults and their young:

  6. Lex

    I’m sure there are ways around this and I’m sure that the loopholes are being exploited to their fullest, but any project that gets federal funds is usually a Davis-Bacon prevailing wage job. Meaning that the labor costs are the same whether the contractor employees are union or non-union; non-union labor gets the full union compensation package (benefits, pension, etc.) cash equivalent. If Davis-Bacon is in effect for the Arizona project, then hiring non-union isn’t about saving money.

    Beyond that I have to say, “well … you’ll have that on these big jobs.” It does sound like a terrible project. I suspect that the reason they get away with the safety issues is that they made a “partnership” arrangement with Arizona OSHA (or whatever they call the agency) which usually means that the regulators don’t do much in the way of site visits and the ones performed are scheduled. The regulatory interface is mostly administrative with audits performed by the construction group and results handed over to regulators.

    1. Katniss Everdeen

      Ya think Davis-Bacon applies to those 500 foreign workers whose visas TWSC is trying to “fasttrack,” to sub-in for the “unskilled,” non-union labor they tried to get away with hiring?

      This build is being financed by american taxpayers and will generate profits for a chinese company. As far as I know, americans will not see a dime of financial benefit. It should have been a no-brainer (an obvious imperative for any biden-conceived project) to specify that only american union labor be used. brandon is a big labor supporter from scranton after all.

      Kinda makes you wonder what other contingencies have been overlooked in this rush to keep the river of sacred chips, so vital for our “modern” way of life, flowing. What happens, for instance, if china decides “reunification” with taiwan is in its best interest?

      1. cfraenkel

        That’s the main reason ‘they’ (the MIC & wall st) convinced TSMC to locate the fab in conus to begin with. On a powerpoint deck, chip production is fungible. If the reunification balloon goes up, DOD assumes they’ll be able to shift production on-shore. Wishful thinking no doubt, but then reality doesn’t seem to influence decisions in DC.

    2. juno mas

      Here’s the US Dept of Labor link for Davis Bacon regulations:

      I’ve been involved with federally funded projects in Nevada (right-to-work State) and the DBRA pay scale (prevailing wage) is always higher than what most contractors pay their laborers. In a Union controlled labor state that may not be the case for high skill trade unions (high rise steel construction). But the federal prevailing wage scale will reflect this.

      Both General contractors and sub-contractors often use these regulated federally funded projects as bonus days for their employees. The paperwork involved with DBRA is considerable and getting banned from these types of projects (for cheating) is not favorable for big construction firms.

  7. Mark Gisleson

    If the American working class ever decides it needs a motto, I’d vote for: “They would not listen to us.”

      1. Mark Gisleson

        Nah. At that point all you have to do is give them a hard look and the message is delivered.

        Reporters have no way of verifying the uglier truths: workers rarely object once. When they disagree, management hears about it at every step of the process. Usually goes well beyond “I told you so” and ends in “thank god there weren’t more fatalities” territory.

        Management intransigience can be best summed up as that scene in every Disney family movie where the parents are dead wrong and stupidly so because they refuse to hear their kids tell them the one thing that changes everything. I have plenty of stories from my factory days and have NEVER met another factory worker who didn’t have similar stories.

  8. chris

    A question for the Commentariat, is there a useful metric to watch for the effect of restarting student debt payments on the economy? I imagine the effect will be worsening over time until it stabilizes. I imagine it will be worse in some regions than in others. Not sure what financial data we collect that would be a good source of information on the topic. Thanks!

    1. The Rev Kev

      Wasn’t there a metric that said that the worse the economy is going, the prettier the waitresses?

      1. juno mas

        Student debt repayment is suspended while a student maintains “substantial progress” ,academically. The debt bomb goes off after graduation.

        The “anchor” of student loans has seeped into prospective college aspirants calculations: enrollment at California community colleges is down substantially (20% at some). Many high school grads are seeking employment in retail/automotive positions that are starting at $20+/hr.

        A good move if you’re uncertain about college and want to get some work/life experience.

  9. Expat2uruguay

    Water situation 8n Uruguay update: the rains have come and save the situation, and the government has also built a pipeline to another watershed to enhance the supply of fresh water for Montevideo.

    After declaring a water emergency on June 19, the Uruguayan government announced the construction of a project to transfer water from the southern San José river to the Santa Lucía with a view to reinforcing the reserves that supply Montevideo and the metropolitan area.

    Once the work was completed, the transfer began to function on August 10 and represents an increase of 200,000 mt3 of water per day in the supply to the area, which consumes an average of 500,000 mt3 per day. “This new source of drinking water supply for the metropolitan area will be essential, since, given the persistent water deficit, it will make it possible to more efficiently manage the use of the Paso Severino reserves,” said the OSE [state water company -expat2uruguay] authorities. As they explained, the work had a cost of 20 million dollars and implied the installation of 13 km of pipeline during 35 working days.”

    1. Ignacio

      Nice to see some good news from time to time. Best regards for you and all Montevideo citizens. There is apparently a very much contested private project for water de-salinization from Rio de La Plata. Here in Spain we are waiting for heavy rains coming next weekend, possibly too heavy and damaging but the water is sorely needed. Here in Madrid the trees look sad.

      1. Amfortas the Hippie

        aye. good luck to all you other dessicated husks.
        here in the NW Texas Hill Country, its been dry as a bone and mostly over 100 degrees since late May…burn ban since then, too…all of that is normal for mid july til mid september…but not may til…?
        i hear anecdotes at feedstore about wells getting silty.
        but el nino has begun in the south pacific…which means a possible repeat of fall of 2018, when we got 30″ of rain in a month or so.(yearly average, fwiw, is 27″)
        all we’re waiting on is something to bust up the stability of this high pressure heat dome…which has now happened, beginning with Hurricane Hillary, and all the smaller ones that came around since.
        i await the inundation…and have metal trash cans of wheat and native pasture seed at the ready, to run out and spread it around in the rain.

        1. cfraenkel

          Here in the lower mainland, Metro Vancouver has been trying to get people to stop watering their lawns. One of their press tactics is to show scary photos of the low water level in the Capilano reservoir, the one readily visible from the street and various tourist locations. Funny thing is, if you bike the 15km trek to the linked-by-pipeline Seymour reservoir, the water level there is maybe 5 ~ 10 ft from the high water mark.

        2. marku52

          My neighbor’s ivy is turning brown. Never seen that before in 10 years here in SW OR. Lots of other trees are doing layoffs to reduce overhead. Brown leaves everywhere. It isn’t fall yet.

          1. wilroncanada

            Southern Vancouver Island (that’s in Canada) normally has semi-drought conditions in July and August. This year the total precipitation from May 1 to August 31 was 47mm. Normal is about 120. Our little burg, about 100kms north, has had less than 40mm in those 4 months.
            Arbutus trees shed both leaves and bark when dry, though the arbutus is technically an evergreen. It will also do something else when under extreme stress–“sacrifice” one branch or branches on one side of the tree to save the rest.

    2. edgui

      The Guardian suggested that various political representatives warned at the time of an imminent fade and yet the works were not being carried out. How can this be explained?

    1. mrsyk

      Good link. There’s excellent background info relating to the suspension of state water code and how this suspension looks to be about serving corporate interests and the wealthy. This is a must read.

    2. LifelongLib

      I don’t think framing this in terms of Native Hawaiians vs the wealthy is correct. The majority of people who live in Hawaii (including the Lahaina area) are not Native Hawaiian but face many of the same economic issues. The fires didn’t respect anyone’s ethnicity.

      1. flora

        The abuse of the ’emergency declaration’ law is now widespread. Think Patriot Act, etc. Very handy for govt entities who want a way to get around existing enacted laws. / ;)

  10. Skip Intro

    We note a parallel between the US neocon administration and its German lackeys in the project to save ‘Democracy’ from candidates who endanger its war by using lawfare to ban political opponents. The Germans may successfully ban AfD, though it is probably a bridge too far, the US, in its sloppy style will botch the Trump prosecution probably resulting in his landslide victory.
    Green Capo Hofreiter:
    “We have to be aware of what a danger the AfD represents for Democracy, Civil Rights, and the wellbeing of many people. This awareness has not yet reached all parts of society”

    1. digi_owl

      What would be funny is if the ban leads to Wagenknecht’s new party gets a massive influx of members.

      1. Feral Finster

        Germans are nothing if not obedient. Germans also want to believe that their leaders have their best interests at heart.

  11. Michael Fiorillo

    Regarding Michigan residents losing their Medicaid coverage in June: fifteen million Americans lost their eligibility for Medicaid on the day Trump was indicted in the Stormy Daniel’s case. They didn’t lose it because of Joe Manchin or mean Repugs; they lost it because Uncle Joe and the Democratic Party don’t want them to have it, just as they likewise didn’t want to increase the minimum wage.

    Needless to say, #McResistance imbeciles in the media and elsewhere were oblivious, if not indifferent, and could only crow about the indictment of Orange Man. If they wanted to discredit themselves even further, they should have brought Michael Avenatti (remember when #McResistance media was talking about him as a possible presidential nominee in 2020? Good times…) back for old times sake.

  12. The Rev Kev

    ” “Value-based communication”: Baerbock now wants undiplomatic diplomats”

    Only Annalena Baerbock could be so dense as to tell Germany’s Ambassadors to go around the world and start lecturing other countries on Germany’s values like she does and that she will back them. I guess that when she went to China and started to lecture and finger-wag at them that she thought that this would be a great template for all of Germany’s Ambassadors to use. But what will happen is that it will isolate Germany and get other countries to turn to China and Russia more. Has she really forgotten what it was like when Trump appointed Richard Grenell to be the US Ambassador to Germany and just after he arrived, he stared acting as if he was the Grand Viceroy of Germany and started to issue orders?

    1. digi_owl

      She and her ilk seem convinced that that neoliberal globalism is the ultimate culture, and anything else is backwards conservatism best reserved for museums and reservations.

  13. bassmule

    Re: Guillotine Watch

    Where are all the gazillions of kilowatt hours for this project going to come from?

  14. Ignacio

    According to Político poll of polls in Germany while voting intention remains more or less stable for CDU, SPD, FDP and die Linke, from sep22 to today, the greens have seen a decline from 23% to 14% while the AfD a rise from 12% to 21%. So the greens would like to play this card of forbidding the AfD by pre-emptively determining it is a menace to democracy as the way to solve the problem of them loosing popularity. Who is here the real menace to democracy? This runs parallel to the Trump indictments in the US so it seems the Greens are just following the example given by the Democrats in the US to resort to judicial rules bent by them to their interests. This, IMO supports the theory that there is an undemocratic internationalist PMC push to keep their power at any cost.

    1. Louis Fyne

      “…undemocratic internationalist PMC….”

      on the plus side, most transnational PMCs have never held a gun or experienced deprivation as bad as queuing in a Walmart.

      So any civil war in the western world will be awfully short. Mercenaries are not going to be dying for Klaus Schwab and company.

      1. Ignacio

        On the minus side their war include “sanctions” of the kind of rising interest rates and taxes more damaging for a populace that has no escape to tax havens or whatever they have at their disposal.

  15. The Rev Kev

    “SITREP 8/30/23: Ukraine Smokescreens Failures With Meaningless Deep-strikes”

    Was reading earlier how the Russians intercepted a Ukrainian sabotage team-

    ‘Russian security forces have intercepted a Ukrainian commando team, seeking to conduct sabotage operations in Russia’s Bryansk Region, according to the Federal Security Service (FSB).

    Two Ukrainian servicemen were killed in Wednesday’s firefight, and five were captured, including three who were injured, the agency said. It added that the FSB had worked alongside the National Guard and the Interior Ministry.

    The Ukrainians were identified as members of Ukraine’s military intelligence and special operations command.’

    I wonder who trained those guys up before they tried to go into Russia? They had a helluva arsenal with them.

    1. digi_owl

      Weird seeing them target northwards near Belarus.

      Also, that is a whole lot of phones. Never mind the consumer solar panels and the eink readers.

      I’m guessing the 90s Nokia looking phone is a sat phone.

      Oh and those rifles are WAC-47s?

  16. Mikel

    “Crypto Startup Bankrupt After Losing Password to $38.9M Crypto Wallet” 404Media

    “…Prime Trust pitches itself as a crypto fintech company designed to help other startups offer crypto retirement plans, know-your-customer interfaces, ensure liquidity, and a host of other services…”

    I think the bank fiascos earlier this year are a reminder that everyone’s liquidity is only ensured if they have access to a bailout and insurance from the very financial system it rails against. It’s emergence accelerated from that very same financial system via the ultra low interest rates that went on too long.
    Hence, the attempts to weasel in on the fiat bailout structure via “regulations.”

  17. Carolinian

    Re Caitlin and eagles–Ben Franklin said it should have been the turkey instead of the carrion crow. So you can’t really blame the p.r. aspect on Hollywood, which Franklin hadn’t thought of yet. Raptors are a lot more intimidating than tasty birds who flee when approached and perhaps early USA was worried about being made into dinner.

    Now of course predatory eagles–Russian Tsar’s used two of them on their crest–are totally appropriate.

    We have lots of hawks around here. That screech is kind of annoying.

  18. LawnDart

    Re; #COVID-19, and maybe Jackpot or Class Warfare

    United States ‘experiencing a crisis of early death’

    A recent study is revealing the dire state of public health in the United States. In comparison to other wealthy nations, the U.S. death rate far outpaces America’s peers — leading researchers to say that the country is actually “experiencing a crisis of early death.”

    Researchers from the Boston University School of Public Health (BUSPH) found that more than one million U.S. deaths a year — including many young and working-age adults — could be avoided if the country had mortality rates similar to other high-income nations.

    The study refers to these excess deaths as “Missing Americans…”

    1. JBird4049

      All these “early deaths” from Covid, RSV, and even the flu with the increase of STDs like gonorrhea, chlamydia, and syphilis is starting to resemble the cocktail of infectious diseases such as smallpox, tuberculosis, and again syphilis, that made life miserable, and often very short, around 1900.

      To me, it is surprising that enough people lived long enough to do anything substantial, but then, many of the famous people I read about were going insane or dying of diseases like syphilis or tuberculosis; it is like all those well know people today who are more often dying or being crippled by Covid. It does seem to me that Covid is treated much as AIDS was in the 1980s. Countless numbers dying after a “brief illness” back then with no mention of what that brief illness was.

      The old is new again; I guess that I am very lucky to have lived in the few decades from the 1960s to 2010s when infectious diseases were under control.

  19. Carolinian

    That Unheard on the philosophical underpinnings of the neocon/neolibs is a deep dive in the wackadoo. It says Irving Kristol’s wife Gertrude Himmelfarb provided this basis by embracing a form of Christianity even though Jewish.

    Though a Jew concerned about the abuse of minorities, Himmelfarb laid extraordinary emphasis on this point, in turn making Christianity integral to Cold War liberalism. While liberals had spent the prior century often viewing religious forces as an enemy, she called for a new liberalism based on Acton’s Christian vision of sin. Acton, who had rejected “integralist” forms of Christian Right-wing politics that longed for a return to medieval theocracy, was principally important for reforming secular liberals who sought to secure freedom against secular totalitarianisms such as Nazi and Soviet tyranny. He recognised, Himmelfarb wrote, “the presence of eternal and absolute” morality, in contrast to liberals who “had no sense of the religious sanctity of those principles” and compromised away freedom.

    Billy Graham couldn’t have said any better himself. Of course a more sophisticated view of Christianity might see “sin” as a metaphor for destructive urges rather than a test being supervised by a God judging his own creation (with a Devil also on hand to, as Flip Wilson used to say, “make you do it.”)

    Dividing the world up into good versus evil is handy of course if you want to also conquer while claiming the mantle of good. If the Reaganauts did it first the Bidenauts are doing it now. It could be there are alternate aspects of Christianity that we moderns have to embrace–like forgiveness and redemption or perhaps understanding a better word than forgiveness. We are going to need more than dogma to understand ourselves.

    1. Amfortas the Hippie

      and Praxis…cant forget that.
      Golden Rule, and all that commie stuff.

      only one around here who seems to know what praxis is(besides my boys, of course), is the current catholic priest…who seemed surprised when i brought it up at the dinner after wife’s funeral.

  20. Bsn

    Regarding Ukrainians demanding that their men be found, 2 things. One is that many of them are vaporized on the steppe and secondly, that strapping young man at the 32 second mark in the video looks old and big enough to send to the front. In fact, the boy to his left looks pretty fit too. Watch out what you film.

    1. Skip Intro

      I read that having the soldiers listed as missing allows the AFU to avoid paying some benefits or something, so ‘missing’ is a bureaucratic dodge that is presumably pretty obvious to most involved.

  21. Pat

    Interesting dropping into John Cardillo’s Twitter feed. Not sure if he just liked DiSantis’ response about Idalia or it is more long term, but he is very supportive. “This is Presidential” supportive. It may be coming from the more Republican spectrum of the PMC but I get the same feeling about his response to Trump as I do from the Democratic version. There is a fair amount of TDS there.

    Looking at the article, there is a pretty good case to be made that Trump’s PACs and campaign are over spending. That if they are funding his legal teams it is draining the coffers, not that they lay out where the money actually went. But it also shows that all of them are in the black and money can and is easily transferred between them. Trump does continue to fundraise and is making the case himself that this is about eliminating his ability to advertise. It also states his reported wealth and makes noises that he should pay his bills himself. And adds complaints that he is leaving others accused on their own for legal defense.

    As with all mainstream Trump reporting, we don’t know how much is fueled by “this time is it fervor” Or OTOH how much is hidden by Trump bravado and bragging. It will be interesting to watch it all play out. If past is prologue, there will be some big action regarding Trump to distract from something detrimental to Biden and it will result in a huge influx of cash for Trump long before his campaign organizations run out of funds. But maybe the Bidens have learned and will do something else.

  22. John Beech

    Late to NC today, the press of work, as usual.

    Regarding the TSMC plant in AZ . . . might this be a time we in America took a back seat and did it their way? After all, look and learn became a watch phrase for good reason.

    I’m troubled we go hat in hand to beg them to build a plant stateside only to then make trouble. Good thing I’m not the Taiwanese else I’d be reconsidering this whole thing.

  23. Mikel

    “Strategies Against BRICS” German Foreign Policy

    “…The Western powers have failed to drive a wedge into the group itself or between BRICS members and the numerous nations seeking to join. The threat of apprehending Russia’s President Vladimir Putin on his way to South Africa was aimed at stirring up tensions within the BRICS group…”

    That was to the point. No room for misunderstanding.

    What’s the USA equivalent of this “German Foreign Policy” publication/organizition?
    “Information on German Foreign Policy” ( is compiled by a group of independent journalists and social scientists who observe, on an ongoing basis, Germany’s renewed attempts to regain great power status in the economic, military and political arena.”

  24. ArvidMartensen

    On Thiel, Zucks, and those other tech anti-humans
    parabiosis…This is where they did the young blood into older mice and they found that had a massive rejuvenating effect.

    Thiel is just using a word to confuse the plebs rather than the word that every 8 yo kid recognises from the movies. It’s vampire. Thiel wants to become a vampire and live forever.

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