Links 8/6/2023

4,000 Rescued Beagles, Bred for Research, Found Homes and Best Friends New York Times

More Baby Boomers are living alone. One reason why: ‘gray divorce’ CNN (KW)

Tropical trees use social distancing to maintain biodiversity Eurekalert!


Global Boiling The Polycrisis

Floating Solar Panels at The Equator Could Provide Virtually Unlimited Energy Science Alert (Chuck L): “…floating on calm seas…”

Hiroshima Day 2023: The global footprint of nuclear fallout Down to Earth


Two million people have long Covid in France, new figures show The Connexion

Experts warn UK is ‘flying blind’ with Covid cases expected to surge in autumn Evening Standard

Old Blighty

In London, thousands on the streets with no place to call home Anadolu Agency

Some British Airways passengers could go hungry as it will stop loading flights with enough food for all flyers Insider. Hunger games at 35,000 feet.

Prison living costs rule scrapped for wrongly convicted BBC (KW)



Pakistani PM Imran Khan arrested, sentenced to 3 years in prison Al Mayadeen

Pakistan’s IMF bailout is not without political consequences Himal Southasian


A Global Web of Chinese Propaganda Leads to a U.S. Tech Mogul New York Times (VS):Half or more of the charges they level are that these people are committing thought crimes beyond the officially approved narrative, and some of them correspond to Chinese talking points. How dare they? And a successful entrepreneur is funding radical people and being a class traitor, how dare he?”

Chinese ambassador to Russia comments on the dangers of NATO’s expansion into Asia Gilbert Doctorow

China-Italy ties: as Rome looks for belt and road exit it’s expected to be ‘punished twice’ without reaping benefits South China Morning Post

What Does China’s Stimulus Plan Mean For Rare Earths? Oil Price

US discusses ‘creative ways’ to help Mongolia export rare earths South China Morning Post

South Africa Spurns US Pressure to Stop Using China’s Huawei Technology Bloomberg


France refuses to withdraw troops from Niger RT

Niger’s coup leaders ask Russian mercenary group, Wagner, for help Euronews (KW)

New Not-So-Cold War

Biden’s Ukraine quagmire Nonzero Newsletter

Ukraine claims it broke through part of Russia’s fearsome defensive line in its counterattack. The next layer is even worse. Insider

Ukraine’s Attrition Rate Suggests Counteroffensive is Over Sputnik. Not so fast…

Eight Ukrainian pilots ready to train on F-16s Politico.English proficiency remains a sticking point.”


Ukraine is attacking its allies The Telegraph

Full video

More provocations from the territory of Belarus will come, says Polish PM Notes From Poland. Looks like Morawiecki is getting fashion tips from Zelenskyy.

Lithuania declares more than 1,000 Belarusians and Russians to be national security risks AP


Oil sanctions have failed after budget revenues surge as Russia completes the switch from European to Asian markets Intellinews

Putin’s secret navy The New Statesman. Greek shipping oligarchs.

Drone attack on tanker shows Kyiv’s intent to hit Russian energy shipments Politico EU

South of the Border

The U.S. Plot to Finalize the Theft of Venezuela’s Oil Black Agenda Report

You can get buried in hot pink with Barbie lining your casket—in El Salvador AP


Iran Navy Readies Drones And Missiles As US Marines Prepare To Board Oil Tankers gCaptain

Christians come under attack as Israel’s far right gets more brazen Middle East Eye

The Arabic media on Israel’s crisis: Don’t interfere with its implosion 972 Magazine

Israeli Coup Presents Iran, Hezbollah and Hamas With a Rare Opportunity Haaretz

Saudi Arabia bans travel to Lebanon, asks its citizens to ‘quickly leave’ The Cradle

Israel orders tens of thousands of 155mm artillery shells from Elbit Defense News

Imperial Collapse Watch

Scientists of Chinese descent leaving the US at an accelerating pace Chemistry World

Why the F-35’s Low Altitude Ceiling is a Major Drawback: Adversaries Will Almost Always Strike From Above Military Watch Magazine

France challenges US defense industry in Middle East as Rafale fighter jet sales outshine F-35 Al-Monitor

Army’s pricey IVAS goggles meet a training obstacle: Doors Breaking Defense

Biden Administration

The Ukrainian Prosecutor Joe Biden Had Fired Is Speaking Out Townhall


The 2024 Election Cycle Has Entered Its Summer of Discontent TNR


Yielding to Temptation: Jack Smith’s Indictment Seeks to Bag Donald Trump at any Cost Jonathan Turley

The Supremes

Clarence Thomas’s $267,230 R.V. and the Friend Who Financed It New York Times


Chris Hedges: Nurses Fight Godzilla Scheerpost

Transforming healthcare for older adults Brookings Institution. Spoiler: AI saves the day.

America’s largest hospital chain has an algorithmic death panel Cory Doctorow, Pluralistic


Texas AG appeals judge’s order that allows women with complicated pregnancies to get abortions Texas Tribune

Groves of Academe

College students with loans more likely to report bad health and skip medicine and care, study finds The Conversation

For $17,700 you can get your master’s degree in happiness: ‘it’s too important a field to be at the mercy of self help’ Fortune


Local governments are using A.I. to send kids to magnet school or set bail for convicts—and they’re not even trying to regulate it Fortune

AI Keeps Using More And More Energy. Where Will It End? Science Alert

Digital Watch

Australians could get a national digital identity within a year. This is what that means for you Nine News (KW)

Emerging Markets in Asia Are Rushing to Adopt Central Bank Digital Currencies The Diplomat

Zeitgeist Watch


The Bezzle

Remember That Guy Who Gave ChatGPT $100 to Start a Business? It Failed Miserably Futurism

Class Warfare

Southwest Pilots Union Forced To Negotiate With Airline Jalopnik

L.A.’s ‘Hot Labor Summer’ Flares Up Once Again Los Angeles Magazine. City workers to strike Tuesday.

Some of California’s best-paid public employees say they’re ready to strike. Here’s why Cal Matters. Prison doctors and psychiatrists.

Grindr Forces Workers Back to Office for Trying to Unionize, Organizers Say in Complaint Bloomberg

Need to Hire Workers in a Hot Job Market? Let Them Do Some Remote Work Wall Street Journal

Antidote du jour (via):

See yesterday’s Links and Antidote du Jour here.

Print Friendly, PDF & Email


  1. griffen

    Bury me in a pink coffin lined with Barbie images, I think not but it’s a crazy world. I mean there are all kinds of options to upgrade your “last gasp” at shopping and US consumption excess. I know what you’re perhaps cynically thinking, well I can’t take it with me.

  2. The Rev Kev

    “4,000 Rescued Beagles, Bred for Research, Found Homes and Best Friends”

    Anthony Fauci seen looking despondent.

    And that is one beautiful looking Beagle in today’s Antidote du jour. Thanks.

  3. timbers

    Imperialist(s) Collapse Watch

    IMF and World Bank report based on PPP GDP (vs nominal GDP), Russia is now the largest economy in Europe and 5th largest in the world, displacing Germany in both slots. UK falls to 10th, and may soon fall out of the top 10 forever. There are other losers in Europe. Nominal GDP is a different story. I suppose using the nominal method, we can always tweak the value assigned national currencies vs the USD to get the desired result.

    It’s hard to find any reporting on it in the MSN.

    1. Maxwell Johnston

      It was to be expected that RU would eventually overtake Germany in PPP terms, especially given recent events. Actually I think RU’s economy has long been bigger than Germany’s, given that the grey (all cash) economy in RU is certainly much larger than in Germany. Still, I’m impressed that the World Bank faced facts and ranked RU at number 5 (but not without a footnote, read to the bottom!):

      RU is now surprisingly close to number 4 Japan, which has its own issues with demographics and national debt. The times they are a-changin’.

    1. pjay

      Here’s some more context: an interesting profile on the President of Nigeria (who is also the current chair of ECOWAS), who has been threatening a military intervention to “restore democracy” in Niger:

      Tinubu represents what we in the West mean by “democracy” in Africa. Fortunately for Niger (and everyone in the region), there seems to be some resistance to Tinubu’s proposals from the Nigerian Senate. Let’s see which example of Nigerian “democracy” the West favors.

  4. Benny Profane

    So, the NYT runs a big front page story this morning for the Sunday brunch crowd all about how the Kennedy family is so embarrassed and ashamed of Robert Junior and his public persona, repeating the smear that he must be out of his mind for mentioning that a scientific study found that Ashkenazi Jews and Chinese people were more immune to the virus than the rest of us. That was too much for Caroline’s kid, who doesnt even carry the Kennedy name. Anguish in Camelot: Kennedy Campaign Roils Storied Political Family
    Meanwhile, Robert Junior filed a lawsuit against Google Friday for censoring his speech, which you would think would be kinda a big deal, when a Presidential candidate clashes with a massively powerful tech giant during a campaign, a tech giant obviously working with the incumbent forces to silence opposition. But, nope, no mention of this lawsuit at all in the New York Times since Friday, just this trouble in Hyannis Port stuff. Oh, that Bobby, what will we do with him. Like they should have power over him.
    But, what’s even more comical, is what I found when I searched Google for “rfk jr sues google” and got this:
    They can’t get the narrative straight. Some say that he was censored because of his “anti vax” views, others, well, just because, but, again, none want to go near the fact that he is the only outspoken anti Ukraine war funder other than Trump. YouTube shut him down minutes into his speech declaring his candidacy, and he certainly wasn’t going on about vaccines at that point. But at least some media was covering this, other than the grey lady.

    1. Benny Profane

      Meanwhile, the hits keep on coming. It’s as though somebody at HuffPost (I thought they left us) watched Debbie Wasserman Shultz do her thing and said, hold my beer. Maybe Debbie herself is moonlighting with a pseudonym.

    2. Bsn

      Oh, that NYT. Right now, their headline is about Russia’s “Forever War”. Just can’t make this sheit up. Well, actually the NYT can.

        1. Vandemonian

          Australia’s foreign policy as it applies to China is a bit schizophrenic. We alternate between militaristic chest-thumping in an attempt to impress our American mates (aka overlords, or masters, or owners, or occupiers) on the one hand, and wheedling pleas to lower trade tariffs to appease our primary producers on the other.

          You’d think, after 225 years of occupying this wonderful place we might have worked out who we are, come up with a genuine national identity, and sorted out our place in the world.

          1. The Rev Kev

            I thought that PM Paul Keating had it right decades ago when he said that Australia’s place is in Asia and that we should act accordingly. A lot of people back then thought the same. The past decade ago though we seem to be turning our back on Asia and going all in on the Anglo-Saxon Alliance. Gonzalo Lira did a video some time ago saying that we in Oz are being set up to be the future Ukrainians of the Pacific and I think that he is right.

            Looks like New Zealand is being roped in too and may join AUKUS-


            1. Vandemonian

              Can only agree, Rev. Keating was whip-smart – far too intelligent for Australian politics.

              Speaking of intelligence in politics, I’m beginning to wonder whether Albanese is deliberately mismanaging the Voice to Parliament process. Surely no-one leading a country the size of ours could be so inept and incompetent without putting on an act.

              1. The Rev Kev

                The Voice referendum is already failing but he is still going full speed ahead. I guess that he wanted some sort of ‘legacy’ for his Prime Ministership and nailed his flag to this idea. He was always just a mediocre talent and this is just proof along with his subservience o whatever Washington wants.

          2. MJ the Covid Spreader

            For all that time we fought for the British until they collapsed during WW2 and then we fought for the septic tanks (yanks).

            We are a colonial outpost. The only question is whether the Whitlam dismissal was a coup and if so, for the US or the Brits. Perhaps both.

            No government has been independent since then, including Keating.

    3. Lee

      “… repeating the smear that he must be out of his mind for mentioning that a scientific study found that Ashkenazi Jews and Chinese people were more immune to the virus than the rest of us.”

      There are studies that indicate there are genetic factors determining degrees of susceptibility or resistance to Covid-19. Whether or not these traits correspond to what we commonly refer to as racial groupings has not been determined so far as I know. Please correct me if I am mistaken.

      Had COVID but no symptoms? You might have this genetic mutation Nature July 19, 2023

      1. Jabura Basaidai

        interesting link – maybe a good thing i never got the ‘flu’ shots – had covid once and only way i knew was by taking a test at friends insistence after coughing due to smoking something wacky the night before but not after – positive on Monday negative on Friday and absolutely no symptoms – my brother and his wife who had flue shots (just checked with him) and mRNA shots and are mask careful got covid and were laid up for 2 weeks – we both have O+ blood type which is supposed to be good for avoiding hard cases of covid – did have the novavax 2 shot series 3 months before, only vaccine of any kind i’ve gotten since a kid – also been taking a mix of vitamin and herbal supplements for decades which includes a healthy dose of E and nattokinase – still mask up regularly and avoid crowds – ain’t no fool – had a valve stuck in 4 years ago so aware of the consequences to the blood and endothelial system – NC has helped extensively in staying abreast and aware – thank you one and all – jb

      2. Benny Profane

        Remember when the Spanish wiped out a big portion of the indigenous population of Central America just by shaking hands?

        1. Jabura Basaidai

          just started reading 1491 by Charles Mann – Spaniards really f&%#ed it up and the rest of the colonials that followed – sadly

          1. Benny Profane

            When I visited Granada, taking in the Alhambra and then visiting Isabella’s and Ferdinand’s tomb at the Royal Chapel, I had to think how history would have been so much better if the Moors won.

      3. jrkrideau

        Strangely enough, the Russian head of the military’s Chemical & Biological Warfare, General Kirillov, I believe, seemed to suggest that racial profiling was likely. I think his presentation here mentions it.

        Victoria Nuland’s dear-in-the-headlights testimony in front of a Senate commitee seems interesting.

        1. The Rev Kev

          A coupla years ago the USAF put out a contract to take DNA samples of people from Russia or Ukraine-Russia. You do have to wonder why.

  5. Lexx

    ‘More Baby Boomers are living alone. One reason why: ‘gray divorce’ ‘

    Immediately in the houses around us, six people living alone. Two have never married, one is a widower, one has married and divorced twice, two are married and their husbands have lived elsewhere for the last two years but show up once in a while for visits. All living alone in houses much too large for just one person.

    In the case of the missing husbands, one of these are the house flippers. After five years they can claim all the profit from the sale of the house tax-free. The second husband has been caring for an elderly parent.

    There are additional reasons why the Boomers are living alone or have split households other than divorce.

    1. digi_owl

      Yeah my mind did wander to all those that are likely alone because their partner succumbed to some work induced illness early.

    2. Roger Blakely

      At least when Baby Boomers were in their twenties in the 1960s and 1970s there was a concept that they were supposed to form families. That concept is far weaker today.

      Here is the link submitted by Hayek’s Heelbiter to Yves’s post last week about energy and women: 45% of women between ages 25 and 44 will be single and childless by 2030:

      The basis for the article, according to Google, is the following: According to a study by Morgan Stanley, it’s estimated that 45% of women ages 25–44 will be single and childless by 2030.

      1. annm

        As a baby boomer, I have to somewhat disagree. Many of us in that day were very involved in environmental issues and chose not to have children because, among other things, overpopulation. A joke today, since the world population has doubled since then. And the environment has hugely degraded. We were not wrong. I have never regretted not reproducing myself and know a number of women my age who made the same choice.

        1. Lexx


          My various SIL’S though more than made up the difference by having 28. One married three times, one has never married, one is a widow (2nd marriage) and the other three should be but those husbands keep hanging in there against the odds.

    3. albrt

      I am an attorney and I do some divorce work. The years after the kids grow up have always been known as a likely crisis time for marriages. It seems weird to me that anybody would not know this.

  6. The Rev Kev

    “US discusses ‘creative ways’ to help Mongolia export rare earths”

    ‘The landlocked nation is dependent on goodwill from neighbours China and Russia to get critical minerals to the world market’

    Well since teleportation is not a thing yet, they will have to be very ‘creative’ indeed to get those rare earths out since they have Russia to the north and China to the south. if Mongolia wants to get buddy-buddy with the US, they may then encounter, ahem, problems with shipping that ore. I see that the distance between Mongolia and Alaska is about 6,000 kilometers – or about 3,700 miles. Maybe they can give a contract to Elon Musk’s Boring Company to dig a tunnel under China and the North Pacific to Alaska to get those rare earths out that way.

    1. Paradan

      GO GO MIC! Its railgun to the rescue time! Congress needs get on this right away and allocate $200 million for an initial study of whether or we need to redo all the R&D from the Navy’s canceled program. I’m gonna go out on a limb and say that yes we will, given that the ocean and the desert are completely different environment. If congress can get this bill passed next session we can probably start testing a prototype by early next century.

    2. Glen

      Seems like a bit of “miss-direction”? Mountain Pass Mine in California was the world’s largest rare earth ore mine in the world at one point:

      Mountain Pass mine

      It’s been re-opened (I think for supplying the MIC), but is still developing local ore processing capability.

      My father-in-law is a retired mining engineer and can related rather detailed history of very good ore sites, and mines that never became viable because the deposits were located in the middle of (proper mining engineer term used here) Bum [Family blog] Nowhere. (But this cuts both ways, would a big open pit mine be popular in a large metropolitan area? Not very, mining is MESSY!)

      So what’s suddenly the big deal about Mongolia unless it’s being used as a wedge issue? If it really is nothing but a political issue, then how does America overcome it’s track record of leaving a devastated country in it’s wake?

        1. Glen

          You might be on to something there. American foreign policy no longer seems targeted at lifting up other countries, but to make them miserable, but then again, that sure seems to be even a local policy – crapify everything. So maybe that’s just the PMC’s skill set.TINA!

          I’ve talked to co-workers from some of the worst parts of Africa (Somalia) and one thing I’ve heard more than once was seeing bags of food come out of the back of a truck with from the USA on the bag made the biggest impression on them, and was a big factor in deciding to come to America.I don’t imagine dropping cluster munitions has the same effect.

          1. ex-PFC Chuck

            “American foreign policy no longer seems targeted at lifting up other countries, but to make them miserable . .”

            American foreign policy has never targeted at ‘lifting other countries up’, except perhaps in John Quincy Adams’ mind. However since 1948 it has been explicit policy to make or keep them miserable:

            “ . . we have about 50% of the world’s wealth but only 6.3% of its population. This disparity is particularly great as between ourselves and the peoples of Asia. In this situation, we cannot fail to be the object of envy and resentment. Our real task in the coming period is to devise a pattern of relationships which will permit us to maintain this position of disparity without positive detriment to our national security. To do so, we will have to dispense with all sentimentality and day-dreaming; and our attention will have to be concentrated everywhere on our immediate national objectives. We need not deceive ourselves that we can afford today the luxury of altruism and world-benefaction.”
            “Report by the Policy Planning Staff,” signed off upon by George Kennan, Director

              1. cosmiccretin

                Might not an alternative view of the Marshall Plan be that it precisely anticipated Kennan’s advice, that “our attention will have to be concentrated everywhere on our immediate national objectives”?

                The immediate objective of said Plan being by dispensing economic relief to ward off what was feared could be a soviet-communist takeover of what would otherwise have been a desperately impoverished and wrecked continental western Europe.

                Meanwhile Allen Dulles, James Jesus Angleton and other various other dubious characters for their parts busied themselves with pursuing the same objective, employing covert, rather more unconscionable, methods (and not a few ex-nazi/ex-fascist operatives).

                A difference of method rather than of purpose perhaps?

                1. Yves Smith

                  I have been told another theory by a very knowledgeable economic historian. He claims his reading of archives shows a tremendous amount of European flight capital was in the US financial system, more than we could use well domestically (note that sort of idea would never occur now). So a motive was to return the monies to Europe and rebuild export markets (remember Europe was so devastated that American firms would be providing a lot of capital equipment).

                  Problem is this finding was never germane to any of the things he published, so I can’t refer to a source.

  7. Mikel

    “Ukraine is attacking its allies”The Telegraph

    Wait until they really get a load of what else is going to come out of that training ground for terror.
    Blowback is going to be a mother.

    1. digi_owl

      Now if only that blow could reach the US east coast.

      But i suspect Europe will be the crumple zone once more…

    2. Paradan

      Don’t know for certain, but I’m pretty sure you can hit an airliner with a Javelin during take-off or landing.
      Good news is, is that they’ll totally show up on the body scan so there’s no way you could sneak one out of the terminal and onto the tarmac.

      1. digi_owl

        No need. With a 2km range, it can be fired from beyond the fence. That is, if it locks onto the heat of the plane at all. The primary complication will likely be the limited altitude, as it is not meant for anti-aircraft jobs.

        And USA et al has been shipping plenty of Stingers etc to Ukraine that would do a better job if one want to down an airliner. Just as Iraqi insurgents, as i think they got their hands on some leftovers from when CIA was handing them out like candy in Afghanistan.

  8. Dr. John Carpenter

    I’m just curious. Is there anyone who has been paying attention who doesn’t think the US will murder Z and blame it on Russia?

    1. The Rev Kev

      I was kinda betting on the neoNazis doing him in first and blaming the Russians. I would be curious as to who his bodyguards actually are. Are they all Ukrainian or are there western soldiers there as well like happens elsewhere? That could make a difference.

      1. digi_owl

        Didn’t a recent Helmer article quote Putin advising the Banderites to get rid of Z now? Seems everyone considers him a dead man walking since Vilnius.

        Do wonder if he could manage a flat run into Belarus from Kiev come night time.

      2. Dr. John Carpenter

        Who says they aren’t the US’s neo-nazis?

        If I were Z, I’d trust no one. But he doesn’t seem that self aware.

      3. Es s Cetera

        Right now Russia would be the safest place for Zelensky, that or perhaps Israel. I wonder if that’s how it’ll plot twist. Wondering if he has any Israel trips on the schedule…

  9. griffen

    Sports desk entry, from the cheap seats. Breaking overnight the USWNT will be travelling back to the US a tad earlier than planned, losing to Sweden. I am not an avid soccer fan of any stretch. This seems a bit, shocking of an early exit I suppose.

    I’m most familiar with the women’s soccer movement having lived in Chapel Hill, NC circa 1996 to 2006. The college game (led UNC coach Dorrance) there served as a heavy influence on those earlier Women’s national teams, starting with Mia Hamm and many of her counterparts.

    1. NotTimothyGeithner

      My sense is the hoopla around the team was around individual stars (the US is the evil empire in women’s soccer), too many stars. I certainly understand the desire of cash in on advertising deals, but I kind of suspect this wasn’t the Hamm teams that looked like machines with Hamm just outperforming everyone. The Rapinoe segment painted her as the rotating BLM Ukraine etc yard signs. I like Rapinoe, but I feel like the desire to promote new stars left things in a mess.

      On offense they looked disorganized. I’m reminded of that 2004 men’s bball team that had LeBron and AI. I like Iverson, but that group must have been insufferable. Wade was on it, but he had not won with Shaq yet. Duncan isnt a vocal team leader.

      Ugh, Marbury was on the team.

      1. griffen

        I completely get why the national basketball team had to perform a serious reboot after 2004, and recall all the hand wringing of no longer “the best forever and always” at our own sport. Larry Brown was not the right coach at the time for that group either, even accounting for his championship with the Pistons. A lot of things went wrong that year, for certain, and looking at the roster once again it is surprising that the team managed to win a medal at all.

      2. curlydan

        I watched all 4 games, and the team was a mess all over even though it had a good amount of talent. Some key stars were missing due to injury.

        The biggest issue was the coach, though. He played players outside of their key positions (e.g. Ertz at center back, Dunn on the wing), and he also played a 4-3-3 that left the weakened U.S. midfield without its key stopper (again, Ertz at CB instead of defensive mid) or its key offensive mid, Lavelle (injury at first then yellow cards before Sweden). The Netherlands used a 3-5-2 against us and dominated the game by overrunning our midfield.

        Then there were the front 3. Just bad at the end of the day. Sophia Smith played head down most of the time, charging to the goal and expecting to blow by her defenders. Alex Morgan was never really open and missed a PK against Vietnam and other shots later. When in the game, Rapinoe looked rusty and slow–not the natural born killer she was in 2019. Then she and Smith both missed PKs at the end of regulation. Oy!

        Girma and Horan were about the only two U.S. players who really had good tournaments.

        New coach and a few new faces needed.

        Oh yeah, the Swedish goalie was rock solid today, too, in regulation.

        Lastly, if anyone wants to see some real hate in action, read the comments section of an article on Yahoo or other middle of the road media source. The amount of hate for this U.S. team was immense. It’s sad really that so many Americans would root against their own sports team because of politics.

        1. ChrisPacific

          They can count themselves a little unlucky to be heading home as they did dominate most of the game against Sweden. That said, in football you make your own luck to some extent, and finishing was a problem for them all tournament long, not just against Sweden. Does anyone think that Japan (for example) would have gone goalless from that many chances?

          My first time watching them (I saw all of their pool games, but not the playoff) and I have to say they did not live up to the billing despite obviously having a ton of talent.

    2. dougie

      Soccer is lost on me. Why should I pay any attention whatsoever that to a sport that (mostly) does not allow use of our magnificent hands with opposable thumbs? I have felt this way since the 60’s when they made us play the game at recess in the 4th grade.

      1. Milton

        I always liked any sport where you can eat a P&J sandwich while playing. Talk about multi-tasking.

      2. vao

        If you want to use your hands and your feet, what about rugby — officially called rugby football?

      3. redleg

        Because not using one’s magnificent hands with opposable thumbs* is really hard to do, both physically and mentally.

        *there are throw ins, plus the goalkeeper.

      4. BRetty

        I agree.

        Some anthropologists have floated the theory that the big “leap” or hunting advantage that put early hominids on the way to dominance was not increasing brain size, but the evolution of the shoulder joint and the ability to throw overhand, hard and accurately. Modern apes are far stronger than humans, but there is no way a chimp or orangutan could ever really throw a baseball.

        I like that the two uniquely “American” sports — baseball and football — are centered around throwing. Baseball is about throwing a rock, while football (modern football, esp the last 30 years) is about throwing a spear.

        One note: Women “throw like a girl” not due to anatomy but because of practice. When actor John Goodman started production on “Babe”, the Babe Ruth biopic, it was assumed that although he was right-handed, he would be able to pick up batting and throwing lefty. HAHAHAH. He was not just bad, but pathetic, not even believable. Production was shut down for months while he worked with a couple MLB coaches to train his swing and throwing motion from scratch.


  10. Mikel

    “For $17,700 you can get your master’s degree in happiness: ‘it’s too important a field to be at the mercy of self help’ “Fortune

    “Just like you have microeconomics and macroeconomics, we have micro happiness and macro happiness,” Ben-Shahar says.

    I don’t even know where to start ripping this to shreds…

    With the point that the entire concept is at the mercy of the self-help industry, the bizarre, desperate, and maybe insane need to quantify emotions or just calling it all part of a grift that has gone on too long.

    1. The Rev Kev

      It’s a Professional Managerial Class thing where it all gets down to a matter of credentials. Who was them and can advance and who doesn’t. Mind you, I don’t expect to see Ben-Shahar replacing Dr. Phil any time soon. :)

      1. Mikel

        “Mind you, I don’t expect to see Ben-Shahar replacing Dr. Phil any time soon…”

        Won’t be for lack of trying.

      2. Terry Flynn

        Funniest result I found in my Aussie research is that one of the best things an Aussie wife can do to improve her well-being is divorce her husband…

        (The lecture is surprisingly still on YT)

        1. aletheia33

          this applies to the NYT story on gray divorce linked today. (sorry, OT comment here.)

          near the top it is mentioned that women baby boomers have more resources than prior generations of women. the implications of this immensely important fact are not spelled out.
          but the obvious (to most women of a certain age) takeaway from it, which is not addressed (b/c NYT?) is that for a certain number of women (we won’t guess at how many, nor will all admit to it), if you don’t have to stay married due to financial dependency, after a decade or so of acute boredom and/or exasperation with tending your partner’s physical and social needs, while the kids are growing into college age, you’re going to fly from the cage the minute its door opens.
          you may or may not fully realize that you’re going to do that, but it sure does happen.
          and you may not mind living on less than you would have had you stayed.

          a friend in her 80s told me recently that the only women she knows in their sixties or older who are still partnered are the ones whose partners are good with home maintenance.
          anecdata obviously. highly questionable no doubt.

          nonetheless, material benefits, maslow’s basic needs, increasingly with age, count a lot more than the NYT piece acknowledges. for example, there’s no mention of the health-destroying demands of the work of caregiving a partner with dementia or other debilities; for example, it’s not unusual for caregiving spouses to die before their partners.

          we can look to the nitty gritty elements of elder life, even among the middle classes who own their own homes, to uncover some of the basic sources of gray divorce. quelle surprise!

    2. griffen

      Good grief and FFS. It’s like a masters class in bull$hittery and also the introductory lead-in for every cult leader that ever walked the earth. Jim Jones, that creep from the FLDS Warren Jeffs, and so many others. Jones never drank his own grape kool aid, either.

      1. Mikel

        Alot of the Jonestown followers didn’t drink the Kool Aid. Evidence has emerged about injection marks and bruises on the people found dead in that compound.
        Once arriving, the people there were being held at gunpoint. They were lied to in order to be convinced to go in the first place.

        1. rowlf

          Having watched the news stories as it was happening, I had the impression the Peoples Temple of the Disciples of Christ had some practice runs first to test loyalty. Maybe that was later reporting to fill in the blanks.

  11. flora

    This morning in my inbox from FLCCC:

    After a year-long back-and-forth with the American Board of Internal Medicine, Dr. Kory and Dr. Marik received notification this week that their certifications will officially be revoked. The charge? Spreading “false or inaccurate medical information.”

    The ABIM committee concluded that the published peer-reviewed, clinical, and observational data that create the foundation of FLCCC protocols, educational materials and public statements are not “consensus driven scientific evidence.”

    No longer are doctors to be led by their deep knowledge, expertise, and years of treating patients, but by consensus. Interestingly, the “consensus” cited by the ABIM includes several studies that have been largely disproven or questioned for their glaring flaws, conflicts of interest or poor design ….

    Clearly, this move by the ABIM is meant to not only silence our founding doctors, but healthcare providers around the world who believe in early treatment, putting patients first, and saving lives….

      1. flora

        Thanks. About “consensus science”: what the Heck does that even mean? At one time, “consensus science” accepted the earth is flat, and sailing beyond the far horizon meant falling off the edge of the world. At one time, “consensus science” meant treat a disease caused by “bad humors” by bleeding patients.

        Bloodletting and blisters: Solving the medical mystery of George Washington’s death

        1. JBird4049

          I am overreacting to this, but really, any fool with a half decent knowledge of the history of science can tear this apart.

          The Ptolemaic theory of an Earth centered Solar System as oppose to the Sun centered Solar System is the best start. I wonder what they would say about Charles Darwin’s and Alfred Wallace’s lack of “consensus driven scientific evidence” theory of evolution by natural selection. Or the then consensus that the fraudulent Piltdown Man was real, which was one of the reason that the legitimate Taung Child was deemed false giving Raymond Dart a horrible time for his discovery. Then there was the problem of the Wright Brothers trying and failing a bit to convince people of existence of their aircraft the Wright Flyer because of course such flying was impossible.

          I knew all this when I was a teenage bookworm four decades ago. For me then, this makes this board’s decision a question of, is the board this ignorant or uneducated, or is it being deliberately, malignly obtuse? Honestly, I do not know what is worse. A system composed of people killing others through ignorance, or a system made of evil people deliberately killing others, which is what such an informed malice would be. And I ain’t being hyperbolic in my descriptions.

          S*** like this makes me not want to get out of bed.

      2. barefoot charley

        Lest we forget, the Emergency Use Authorization enabling Pfizer et al to skip meaningful testing is predicated on the finding that there is no other sound way to address the virus. That’s to say, all alternative treatments *must* be unsound. Of course, that’s a ‘finding,’ as the MIC says, not a fact. If we admitted what the rest of the world knows about covid treatment, big pharma would not only lose its monopoly, it would have to complete the already damning trials it eagerly interrupted thanks to that finding. Big Truth has big sponsors.

    1. XXYY

      Anyone who has followed the history of scientific progress in almost any field knows that workers who make advances in the field are initially denounced, often quite violently, as heretics, fools, grifters, and idiots. The fact that someone would reject the prevailing paradigm and advance something different is more than enough evidence for most working scientists that she or he should be ostracized or banished. Contrary to the mythology of scientific discovery that we all learn in school, insights and inventions that change the face of a field are strongly resented and typically take decades to become widely accepted, commonly because they smash the rice bowls of existing powerful figures in the field. No powerful researcher ever published a paper titled “Sorry I was wrong about everything all my life.”

      Iconoclastic and inventive researchers should expect this dynamic going in, and just carry on anyway.

      1. LifelongLib

        I heard a podcast by an old professor who mentioned that when he was starting out he’d encountered a number of astronomy professors who still accepted the steady state theory. He said they had offices and showed up on campus every day, they just didn’t have any students. I guess the saying about science advancing one funeral (or at least one retirement) at a time is true…

        1. hk

          Steady state held on longer than it should have because LeMaitre, the man who came up with Big Bang was also a priest. I think Frank Hoyle actually said he felt Big Bang was an attempt to sneak Catholic theology into physics.

  12. LawnDart

    One polluted the sky with Starlink, the other poisons minds and is a twat in general… both have social media platforms with billions of users, but I suppose that Twitter is now more democratic than the authoriarian Facebook…

    Some background on the rivalery between these two billionares:

    The public feud between Mark Zuckerberg and Elon Musk is the gift that keeps on giving.

    My initial thought were to discard this as juvenile showboating between two preening cocks, but the idea is growing on me…

    Musk says fight with Zuckerberg will be live-streamed on X

    Elon Musk said in a social media post that his proposed cage fight with Meta (META.O) CEO Mark Zuckerberg would be live-streamed on social media platform X, formerly known as Twitter.

    The social media moguls have been egging each other into a mixed martial arts cage match in Las Vegas since June.

    Now it’s a question of who should fill the undercard… maybe Greene vs.Harris? Or how about some pro-wrestling tag-team action?

    Are we becoming more like Sparta or Rome?

    1. The Rev Kev

      So many people seem to think that Musk is still cool for some reason but today I read an article which shows how he really operates. Twitter/A will go to some of their most popular users and say ‘Hey, nice account that you built up. We’re taking it.’

      So 16 years spent building up that account and they just came along and took it. Not the first time that it has happened either-

      1. Henry Moon Pie

        Where did I hear that if your business depends on a platform, you don’t have a business?

      2. Dr. John Carpenter

        Last paragraph of that first story is the best punchline. Spoiler alert: he may be “super pi$$ed” Musk took his handle, but he’s still a Musk Stan. You can’t make this stuff up.

        Also, why people are shocked at this is beyond me. You think you own anything related to social media? Not unless you own the company itself. The second article, of course he’s not considering legal action as there is none he could take. Take your merch and scram.

      3. Jabura Basaidai

        never paid attention to the whole Musk hype until he respond to a tweet about events in Bolivia in 2019, and said “we will coup whoever we want,” and to “deal with it.” A$$hole – nor do i care for the borg-faced meta monster – put them in the ring and let them go for it –

        1. Henry Moon Pie

          I got the tip in the Comments, it could have been you, that “The Arrival” with Charlie Sheen was an interesting flick. For those who don’t know, it’s about aliens who infiltrate humans institutions so they can build huge CO2 belching plants around the world to do a little geoengineering. They are among the some who like it hot.

          The movie was made in the 90s, and since then, we’ve demonstrated that you don’t need aliens to pump your atmosphere full of CO2 as long as you have billionaires.

          Hmmm. Billionaires. Aliens. Hmmm.

        2. britzklieg

          the borg are fetching compared to zuckerburp… to quote Alberta Hunter: “he’s the ugliest thing God ever put breath in…”

  13. antidlc

    Letters to the Boston Globe re: Jha’s July 31 op-ed:
    With a few basic steps, most of us can finally ignore COVID

    Actually, we can’t yet ‘ignore COVID’

    Glad to see people submitting letters.

    1. ChrisRUEcon


      Once again, relegating these misanthropes to irrelevance is the only way forward. Eff them all. Thanks for sharing.

  14. Colonel Smithers

    Thank you, Conor.

    Further to Russia’s secret navy, my employer, a largely Dutch government owned bank that specialises in commodities and shipping finance, attributes its performance to the war, not just net interest income, and the ability to profiteer, our clients and us. War is good for business, well for us anyway.

    Our shipping clients in Greece and Norway lobbied the European Commission to ensure the latest package of sanctions, whose number I have lost track of, is riddled with loopholes. It was the same with the diamond merchants in Antwerp. Both sets of individuals pleaded (the risk of) poverty. The EU was happy to oblige. As Borell said, “It’s a jungle out there.”

    Unlike the oligarch owned New Statesman, I refuse to personalise these matters, especially having worked briefly in Russia for HSBC two decades ago, and won’t call the shipowners Putin’s navy.

    The public has to understand. It’s not personal. It’s just business, especially when the banking bonuses roll in next spring. We’ll even help Ukraine and spend some of the money on Ukrainian glamazons. Can’t say fairer than that.

    1. digi_owl

      > shipping clients in Greece and Norway

      Groan. Reminds me that the richest man on Cyprus is a Norwegian expat “tax refugee” shipping billionaire.

      If a ship sails in international waters with a Norwegian flag on the stern these days, just about the only Norwegians on board will be the captain and chief engineer. The rest are likely to be from south east Asia etc.

      All thanks to Norwegian Labour becoming a PMC infested center right party somewhere around the 70s-80s.

      1. Colonel Smithers

        Thank you.

        We had noticed.

        So have my friends and former colleagues at Lloyd’s (insurance market)

        1. digi_owl

          Sorry for ranting, it is just a topic that is near and dear to me.

          It used to be a reliable way for school tired Norwegian “boys” to see the world and earn a solid wage.

  15. Stephen

    “Iran Navy Readies Drones And Missiles As US Marines Prepare To Board Oil Tankers”

    An entertaining article that highlights Iran detaining warships and the US offer to “protect” them.

    Right at the end it then admits that Iranian ships have been detained and that foreign ships are released “only” (which actually does not sound unreasonable if you reflect) when the Iranian ones are. But also does not spell out that Ukrainian actions might simply be in retaliation for the seizures.

    Clearly, the article is a test of the reader’s analytical skills. Awesome. Like a SAT or GMAT style passage, I guess.

    1. Boomheist

      When I sailed with the Sailors Union of the Pacific ten years ago piracy was a big issue coming out of the Red Sea (Captain Phillips, anyone? Btw everyone sailing knew he messed up by taking his slow ship too close to the shore and pirates, that element is never discussed) and we crew had a whole series of steps to repel pirates, which mainly meant mounting hoses along the rails of the ship to make it hard for them to climb aboard, going faster than 20 knots, and putting people on watch always. Back then the plan was, if attacked, at some point we would all run through the corridors below the main deck to the bow and lock ourselves in up there, with radios, standing by until help arrived, the argument being that with the crew of the ship out of the way the good guys retaking the ship could fire at will at anyone they saw,. I know, this sounds pretty ridiculous, and it was. Just as I stopped sailing there were plans to bring aboard small teams of US mercenaries, or maybe it was soldiers, anyway teams of up to four people with weapons to guard the ship. On a US ship with US troops that is hard enough – finding them cabin and sleeping space, feeding them, figuring out where to store the weapons, training them to understand how to move around the ship – this is actually a difficult thing to do, and it takes people a good while to really “know” a ship – plus then being in a situation when the people up on watch steering the ship, the mate and the sailors, are now sharing the wheelhouse with one or two armed men, and wondering when the sh*t hits the fan who is giving the orders, not to mention the cost of paying for such a team while on the ship – all hard enough to coordinate and manage on a US ship with US soldiers. Now imagine this happening on a foreign ship, with crew members whop don;t speak English, and officers whose English may not be very good…..

      Except in the case of the Marines on these Greek and other ships it isn;t pirates they will be guarding against – men in open fast skiffs with some rifles and grappling hooks relying on speed. No, this time these Marines are on board to, what, stop an Iranian ship from seizing the tanker? Different stakes, I think, much different.

      Maybe the idea is that with the US Marines on these foreign flagged ships the Iranians will be afraid to seize the ships because of the risk that if a Marine is wounded or killed things suddenly escalate to near war footing. This seems like a crazy view, in fact it almost looks as if placinf the Marine on these ships is designed exactly to create such an incident.

      Of course, there are ways to stop and eventually seize a ship long before Marines will get close enough to strike an Iranian ship from wherever they are on the tanker. First the Iranian ship radios the tanker, says, heave to, stop, prepare to be boarded. The captain of the tanker will..what? Keep going, knowing the Iranian ship may then shoot a small cannon round over the wheelhouse? If I were the captain I would stop, come to a halt. Hopw likely is it that the Marines on board would try to override the captain, force the ship to keep going, risking them all?

      Nothing but one complication after another, and all of this, the marines on Board, seems like a performative action by the Empire to somehow claim it can protest these tankers when in fact all it will do is raise the stakes, enormously.

      1. Henry Moon Pie

        Or at least some of the people behind this plan are using the Marines as bait with the idea if those Marines get killed or taken hostage, it will make an excuse to escalate against Iran.

      2. digi_owl

        I for one am welcoming belt and road, as it will undermine the last vestige of imperial power.

      3. Feral Finster

        “This seems like a crazy view, in fact it almost looks as if placinf the Marine on these ships is designed exactly to create such an incident.”

        Winner winner…

      4. The Rev Kev

        Thanks for that detailed explanation. Yes, it is a lot worse than I thought but there it is.

  16. griffen

    God’s army gathers in Fort Worth. Well, I see the words Kenneth Copeland Ministries and “kook” immediately comes to mind. I find nothing so bizarre, incredulous even, as to see the 45th President held as a sort of champion by this branch of evangelical followers. One speaker even draws a comparison between Trump and the biblical figure Samson.

      1. NotTimothyGeithner

        People didn’t like it (some of its because it’s pointless in larger narrative*) but the Sparrow plot was interesting in that the religions weren’t uniform or wedded to temporal power. Then the king falls under the spell of one order and they get real power enforcing their edicts. The officialdom language changes to include “the faith and the crown” as the order the world is built on. Prior to that, they had an element of religious freedom.

        *I have no doubt the end of the show is the planned end of the books, but Martin discovered Bran didn’t have the best story and simply has tried to find anything remotely interesting while stumbling towards the end, hence his writers block.

      2. griffen

        I could have added a lengthy footnote, detailing my young life growing in a fairly rigid, smaller independent Baptist church and likewise education up to 12th grade graduation. I don’t see how these evangelists grow to become wealthy “empires to themselves” if you will, and accept it as the just hand of the prosperity gospel or divine favour if you will. Pretty sickening.

        As for the army anecdote, a shout out for a personal favorite song, “Seven Nation Army” from the White Stripes. Strike up the loudspeakers, football season is coming shortly.

        1. mrsyk

          “And I’m talkin’ to myself at night
          Because I can’t forget
          Back and forth through my mind
          Behind a cigarette”

          Good song.

        2. NotTimothyGeithner

          The Vulgate used to be the spoken Latin versus the Latin of Cicero, and it became the language of the Catholic Church because people knew the Vulgate not Classical Latin. Languages developed, but the Ecclesiastical Latin stayed the same becoming a language people stopped speaking. Then there was spectacle. Huge sums of money were donated to the church which had all kinds of temporal power.

          The priests call themselves “ministers” and avoid the branded priest label, but its still the same. The spectacle draws crowds. The money just starts appearing and needs to be explained or the faithful might leave. The parts the ministers don’t want to bring up are pushed to the side. In the end, there is nothing new under the sun.

          My general sense is the decline of civic organizations and bowling leagues leaves these charismatic temples as a stand in for community. The money simply pours in as everything else decays.

      3. rowlf

        Reminds me more of the two Karens, Johnny and Luther Htoo, leaders of God’s Army.

        No magical army, says twin

        Luther Htoo returns to Thailand and dispels mythology behind the violent God’s Army, which seized a Thai hospital under the apparent command of child twins.

    1. Henry Moon Pie

      That reference to Samson is a threat. Samson’s strength was a blessing given in return for his Nazarite vow, which included a pledge not to cut his hair. After Samson confided to his girlfriend Delilah about the importance of his long hair, she cut it in his sleep and handed him over to the Philistines. The Philistines bound him, gouged out his eyes and brought him into their temple to ridicule and torture him. Then this happened:

      While they were in high spirits, they shouted, “Bring out Samson to entertain us.” So they called Samson out of the prison, and he performed for them.

      When they stood him among the pillars, Samson said to the servant who held his hand, “Put me where I can feel the pillars that support the temple, so that I may lean against them.” Now the temple was crowded with men and women; all the rulers of the Philistines were there, and on the roof were about three thousand men and women watching Samson perform. Then Samson prayed to the Lord, “Sovereign Lord, remember me. Please, God, strengthen me just once more, and let me with one blow get revenge on the Philistines for my two eyes.” Then Samson reached toward the two central pillars on which the temple stood. Bracing himself against them, his right hand on the one and his left hand on the other, Samson said, “Let me die with the Philistines!” Then he pushed with all his might, and down came the temple on the rulers and all the people in it. Thus he killed many more when he died than while he lived.

      So if Trump is being compared to Samson, the implication is that if the Libs capture and bind him, he will bring the whole thing down on them and himself.

      Here’s David Crosby singing about his Nazarite vow: “I Almost Cut My Hair.” I’ve been operating with my own Nazarite vow (partial ;) ) since Lehman fell.

      1. Pat

        Funny, I have been thinking along the same lines. Not so much Trump delivering a mighty blow, but that the system is being weakened from within with every contortion meant to destroy Trump and his followers. People both need to believe in the system and the systems rules need to be stable and fixed for it to continue. Both “pillars” are being undermined.

        1. JBird4049

          Funny, I have been thinking along the same lines. Not so much Trump delivering a mighty blow, but that the system is being weakened from within with every contortion meant to destroy Trump and his followers. People both need to believe in the system and the systems rules need to be stable and fixed for it to continue. Both “pillars” are being undermined.

          Yes, even if you think that the Orange Menace is the worst thing evah, seeing him getting the attention you think he deserves while the Biden Crime Family gets fêted, worshipped, and an almost free pass from any corruption is dispiriting. It also spotlights all the other free passes on the massive corruption in the system including the Supreme Court. It is at such a level that an individual’s disgust of the system is independent of his ideology, and when you add the lack of competence, it is not if, but when, the system has a collapse.

        2. Henry Moon Pie

          Yep. More a house of cards than a temple supported by stone pillars. Or maybe we’re just in the middle of a long earthquake.

    2. digi_owl

      For a second i forgot that it is a name of an actual city, and figured the US military had thrown away all pretense and gone overtly religious.

  17. Ghost in the Machine

    “First wavers w/Long Covid are dying of things that look a lot like early AIDS deaths, with immune system panels showing similar dysfunction, and I don’t see a SINGLE major news outlet making the connection or asking questions.“
    This is very important if true. It seems possible based on what we have been reading and has dire implications. Who is Laurie Allee and on what info is she making this statement?

          1. Raymond Sim

            Please be clearer. Is the idea here that his decline may have been initiated by his vaccination? If so then say it explicitly, if not then please be explicit about what it is you actually are trying to say.

    1. Raymond Sim

      I can’t vouch for Laurie Allee or her sources, but her assertion is factually correct.

      More than ever before, I would be happy to be corrected by those with better understanding, but I believe I can safely assert that

      1. It’s unlikely that viral persistence is rare.

      2. The reservoirs for persistence include those exploited by HIV.

      3. Were they HIV-positive, many patients with Long Covid would be diagnosed as having HIV-related dementia or AIDS.

      1. Henry Moon Pie

        Thanks for that information. What a tragic story. And he was at the front end of the pandemic as far as catching it.

        Covid has exacted quite a toll among people my age, but Mr. Gilles is the age of my children, a young man with a family. It’s terrible.

        1. Raymond Sim

          Yes, and he would certainly appear to have been suffering from an acquired immune deficiency.

      2. Raymond Sim

        So when you said “Could nutrition be at play?” You meant it in the sense that he may have been suffering from outright malnutrition or other metabolic harm, self-inflicted?

        If so, then I concur. But even then his story will be all too familiar to folks who remember the early days of AIDS, when sufferers resorted to similar measures.

        Given the parallels between HIV and SARS-2 which I mention below, I think it’s quite reasonable to wonder what Gilles’ outcome might have been had an antiviral protocol similar to what has been developed for HIV been available.

        1. Raymond Sim

          Why didn’t you just say “I have some personal knowledge of Brandon Gilles’ case, and I don’t think he died of Long Covid.”?

          Your opaque reference to nutrition wasted both our time.

          Meanwhile Laurie Allee’s statement remains factually correct, as does everything I’ve had to say here.

          1. Raymond Sim

            Lol, it’s a thread full of links to her sources. An actual monkey could have compiled it and it would be just as authoritative as it would be were it produced by a PhD biologist.

          2. Acacia

            I make no claims for legitimacy. My post was mainly to try and surface a link to her sources, so y’all can reach your own conclusions, and hopefully save others the annoyance of digging through the spaghetti of Twitter tweets/replies.

    2. Bugs

      AIDS was a thing well before HIV because HIV hadn’t been discovered as the virus that causes AIDS. Let’s be very clear about that. I’ve mentioned here before how many people close to me I lost from it and this nonsense has no place in rational discussion of the disease. HIV infection is what causes AIDS.

      1. Missy Dunlop

        Luc Montagnier, credited as co-discoverer of “HIV” – said that a healthy immune system can fight off HIV infection many times over.

        I grew up during the AIDS “crisis” when they scared us to death with talk of HIV-AIDS decimating populations because it was going to spread from the male gay community and hard drug community – where it was quite obviously centered – to the rest of the population. This never happened, and it’s certainly not because of public messaging that got everyone to practice “safe sex.”

        There is a lot more to an AIDS diagnosis than HIV infection – in fact, it says so in the literature itself.

      2. Raymond Sim

        I’m afraid there’s a real danger that your message, which was well taken in its time, will be weaponized by minimizers if, as seems increasingly likely, we find that we are confronting a new acquired immune deficiency syndrome.

    3. JBird4049

      Well, AIDS, my old friend is back. IIRC, it took half a decade before it was noticed, then several years of having attention forced onto the authorities, searches for treatments were funded and found, and finally distributed. Say late 1970s to the earlier 1990s before widespread, universally available (more or less) treatments to contain, not eliminate HIV, meaning AIDS is essentially a permanent condition.

      However, using old AIDS as a guide, we will finally get the attention and the resources needed, but only eventually and only after another decade or so passes. If we are lucky, I would say two to five years with the next two presidential elections being involved in the outcome. Happy, happy. Joy, joy.

      HIV/AIDS is a more visually noticeable disease with an almost certain and unpleasant death without treatment, I think, but I could be wrong. If I am right, it means that it will be easier for the authorities in their wisdom to ignore Covid/AIDS as its symptoms are not as distinctive and the progress of the disease is much more varied and even random. Still means millions being dead, crippled then dead, or crippled either permanently or temporally, which is better than the just dead from the original AIDS, from a certain point of view.

      Aren’t we just fracked?

  18. chris

    I feel like sometimes it’s not fair to pick on the Guardian and like minded media outlets for their refusal to see what’s right in front of them. Because the experts they quote say such ridiculous things they don’t really have a chance to do actual journalism. Take this article, #5913245 in a series of bad climate takes. Why have we refused to handle climate change? According to Dr. Goodell, because of racism.

    The northern hemisphere isn’t abusing the southern hemisphere, and all migrants from the southern hemisphere, because it is cheap and easy to do it. The US isn’t importing brown skinned migrants because people with money have no desire to perform back breaking labor for low pay. And we’re not resisting demands from labor to provide AC or other remedies in warehouses or workspaces because rent extracting landlords or capitalists don’t want to spend money. No, it’s all racism.

    I especially like the discussion in the article which makes it seem like this won’t happen to white people. And that we won’t reach a drastic “oh $hit” moment even though we’re breaking records and exceeding what the models told us would happen. No, it will be a slow slog because of racism.

    These people will use anything other than class as an excuse to do nothing. Even though the real reason why we refuse to handle climate change is the rich aren’t affected by it like the poor, and the remedies for the problem would inconvenience the wealthy, so, we ignore them.

    1. Mikel

      It’s a catch-22. The current establishment won’t tackle environmental degradation because of racism and class and they will tackle environmental degradation because of race and class (with the goal of maintaining the privilege of the elite).

  19. The Rev Kev

    “Lithuania declares more than 1,000 Belarusians and Russians to be national security risks”

    Hopefully the Lithuanians are not thinking of downloading a copy of Roosevelt’s Executive Order 9066-

    But they and the other two Baltic States really seem to be suffering from a severe case of Russia Derangement Syndrome. The leadership of Poland too for that matter but the Polish people are realizing now how they could get dragged into this war if things go sideways.

    1. digi_owl

      Them baltics have pretty much suffered that since the USSR dissolved.

      But now something is making it flare like an auto-immune response. Do wonder how brightly the US embassies there glow in the night.

      1. NotTimothyGeithner

        I think the Baltic states and Poland internalized Rumsfeld’s “New Europe” and became a cargo cult expecting to simply have tv west germany prosperity to materialize while cutting out natural trade routes.

        Except for uses at the UN, no one in McLean is going to visit Elbonia as a tourist or consider investing there beyond resource extraction. If I want to go to a cold pro-US with nice summers…I’ll just go to Norway. The population of the Baltic states is shrinking swiftly. I think they are desperate to prove their worth to the McLean, VA elect.

        1. Polar Socialist

          It sure looks like Lithuania is looking to be the next in line to “weaken Russia” when Ukraine is finally out of the game.

          1. hk

            How long could it last? It’s a tiny country with bad demographic profile and fragile economy (that is, heavily dependent on outside sources and markets for everything.). Really, all the Baltics, really.

        2. digi_owl

          Best do it soon then, as Norway seem poised to be washed away with rain in the years to come.

          That said, the local hotels do love the influx of US tourists fleeing the heat waves.

    2. Daniil Adamov

      The Czech president already invoked that American policy as a positive example IIRC. The idea is out there. Not sure if anyone will pick it up – but the Baltics seem likelier to go in that direction than most.

    3. Nikkikat

      I laughed when I saw the polish PM dressed in a green outfit
      Like zelensky! Does Vickie Nuland have a closet of green military
      Get-ups? In all different sizes. She just picks one out and sends it to the latest US dumb a** puppet.

      1. Bugs

        She just might but US presidents all wear that pseudo WWII Army Air Force brown leather jacket on occasion, with special patches and accoutrements. I’ve never seen Putin wearing such nonsense.

        1. alfred venison

          No, Putin doesn’t usually do dress up. Putin’s preferred nonsense seems to take the form of riding horses with his shirt off, or fishing with Shoigu with their shirts off. Having said that, he did once don an appropriate prop in the form of a short car coat to drive a truck across the newly restored Kerch bridge. He also took the wheel & drove himself, again in a short car coat, the last few versts into Mariupol for a surprise visit. He’s not above fashion stunts.

          1. britzklieg

            I am aware of the one famous shirtless, horse-riding Putin photo… can you link to others?

    4. Feral Finster

      Nobody is going to call Lithuania out on it, just as Ukrainian discrimination against the Russian language is a clear violation of several international accords.

      But nobody will anything about it.

  20. pjay

    – ‘Pakistani PM Imran Khan arrested, sentenced to 3 years in prison’ – Al Mayadeen

    I can almost hear Jack Smith furiously taking notes.

    1. Nikkikat

      Lol Pjay, I thought the exact same thing! They’ll get rid of him one or the other. The newest guy in a green suit is waiting in the wings.

  21. LawnDart

    Re; Scientists of Chinese descent leaving the US at an accelerating pace

    Malicious prosecution is a very real thing in the USA– you don’t even have to be political to be caught in the net: some slander from a rival that catches the ear of an authority can mean ruination, especially if you are not of favored class or persuasion.

    The climate in USA is not getting better, and many intelligent people who have the ability to do so are leaving.

    In todays USA, being Chinese makes you suspect. And being treated with mistrust and suspicion is no way to live, let alone living with constant fear of the threat of prosecution for innocent activity twisted to appear otherwise.

    I am sorry for the people who must face this. It is racisim, and for all the lip-service otherwise, racisim is very much alive, and used, in the USA by those in power (or who seek power) to further their political ends.

    The brain-drain is real, and we are becoming more stupid as a nation, but how stupid will things here get?

    1. Bsn

      In a certain way, your comment relates to Waesfjord’s above where he mentions “anti-vaxxers”. So many people have been ostracized and lost friends, jobs and careers for siting studies and statistics regarding how ineffective the Covid vaccines are. Examples from today are Kory and Marik (linked above by Flora). So, are they anti-vaxers????? Divide and conquer is being used – and accepted (without reason and due to people falling for MSN propaganda) by seemingly friendly and concerned citizens. Labeling someone “Chinese” (ergo commies or spies), right wing, leftist, (ad nauseam) is simple and not specific. When people can’t prove a point or come up with a reasonable counter argument they slide into name calling. Simplistic and often wrong. However, for the accused, a good reason to leave the country or leave the argument. Trouble is, some don’t have the means to leave. Many Americans are stuck here with people using terms like anti-vaxxer or Trump lover. Sad but true.

    2. flora

      Or… it may be the case China is offering them better opportunities for advancement in their field, better pay, higher research positions, and better lab facilities. I know one mid-career scientist who went back because of all these things. It was a hard decision for him and his family. They were established here, and well liked by co-workers and neighbors.

      Neoliberals claim the market is infallible, money rules. Maybe they never expected China to play that game against the West. It would be amusing if it were not so destructive to the West’s scientific discoveries’ future, upon which much of the West’s wealth was built over the last 100-200 years.

      Let’s talk about r-ism instead as the driving factor. Yeah, yeah, that’s the ticket!

      1. flora

        Adding, yes, r-ism is real. But I’m not sure it’s the real driver in this case. I also know mid-career scientists from western EU and Middle Eastern countries who started going back home 10-15 years ago because the outlook for advancement in the US was (and is) so bleak, and because US public schools k-12 were so diminished as educational institutions. (They had school age children.)

        1. LawnDart

          Let’s talk about r-ism instead as the driving factor. Yeah, yeah, that’s the ticket!

          “The team also conducted a survey in 2021–2022 of nearly 1400 Chinese Americans in tenured or tenure-track positions at US universities that revealed that 35% of them feel unwelcome, and 72% do not feel safe.”

          Did you miss that part of the article? Seriously, wtf?

          1. flora

            My point: What the survey showed was a new situation that was very much tied to US govt policies and pronouncements, much like the sudden recoil in much of the US population from Middle Eastern looking people in the wake of 9-11. People would hang out their car windows and yell at people on the sidewalk who looked Middle Eastern. I’d never, ever seen that before. (Now it’s forgotten and people act like it never happened. )

            What was happening in 2021-2022 that was tied by the US MSM and govt to China? That’s all. I don’t think it’s an organic situation, I think it’s carefully manufactured, and people fall for the manufacturing now as then. The war drums are beating. That’s all.

            1. flora

              Adding: Please forgive me if I offended you. I apologize. I look forward to your comments, and I meant no offense.

              1. LawnDart

                It didn’t seem like you– I was thinking that your thumbs outran your brain, as mine often do.

                No offense taken.

                I usually appreciate what you bring to the table– even when I don’t agree (seldom) you make well-written and reasoned comments.

      2. curlydan

        Another factor is that life might just be more comfortable in China.

        Its cost of living is generally lower. Most upper middle class families have a maid. The food is better. The infrastructure is generally better. The retirement age is younger. So if you’re not into politics, didn’t marry someone in the states, and aren’t sitting on a huge grant, why not go back?

  22. The Rev Kev

    “South Africa Spurns US Pressure to Stop Using China’s Huawei Technology”

    I can only imagine how the US is trying to do this. They will be telling the South Africans to throw away all the money that they may have spent installing all that Huawei gear, spend an untold amount of money over the next coupla years to rip it all out component by component – a tough job as they are finding out in the US – spend an untold amount of money again buying western equivalents that are likely more expensive and not so advanced and eat all the associated cost with this transition. In return for what exactly?

    This is all getting nutso. So right now as another example of paranoia about Chinese gear-

    ‘British lawmakers have warned against imports of Chinese electric vehicles, claiming the technology embedded in the cars could be used to spy on British citizens, according to a report in The Telegraph on Saturday. If it is manufactured in a country like China, how certain can you be that it won’t be a vehicle for collecting intel and data? If you have electric vehicles manufactured by countries who are already using technology to spy, why would they not do the same here?” an unnamed senior government official told The Telegraph’

    1. NotTimothyGeithner

      Between Clinton and Shrub, the US had 16 years where anything said went. The various foreign service entities are simply completely wrecked. I don’t think they have a concept of diplomacy beyond threats. Then they took the eye off accountability in the MIC, we don’t have a way to enforce those threats. We just had anot her record defense spending bill and per the links our best planes can’t even defend against the most likely threat, not a new threat.

    2. digi_owl

      Ironic, given that this seem to be running completely on “trust us” schoolyard slander techniques. On the other hand Snowden provided inside photos of NSA intercepting Cisco router shipments and installing listening devices.

      At this point i am wondering if getting Sweden and Finland into NATO is repayment for USA making Ericsson and Nokia’s biggest Chinese competition look bad.

    3. Bsn

      I seem to be on a rant today. Last one, I promise. “British lawmakers have warned against imports of Chinese electric vehicles, claiming the technology embedded in the cars could be used to spy on British citizens”.
      Ha! Yet they let nearly all modern cars, manufactured in Britain & the USA, track and sell the personal information on the purchasers/drivers – willy nilly. With “willy nilly” I will leave. Have a nice day. Would you like some fries with your order?

      1. Milton

        I have a huawei phone and give a rat’s patooti if Chinese are spying on me. What the hell are they going to do? I have more to fear from my occasional use of the chrome browser in that I’ll be bombarded with targeted ads from my browsing history.

  23. Terry Flynn

    Re happiness. This article is both horrid and good. Horrid because happiness is a terrible concept as operationalised in research (ask a traditional Mandarin speaker what “4” has connotations with when asked for your happiness on a 1-5 scale)! I won’t even BEGIN to get into the very very NSFW connotations numbers on the 1-11 scale have in Cantonese!

    The 5 concepts, however, are on the right lines. However, I dare not go further into detail since it’ll amount to self-publicity and break rules. However, I was a researcher in one of several groups who operationalised a QUALITY OF LIFE/WELLBEING measure (NOT happiness) that has proven much more intuitive and consistent with a wealth of other evidence about people’s experiences over the life cycle. Look me up if interested since this is not the place to put links to my work.

    1. Raymond Sim

      In hospital after my stroke, I was asked every few hours to rate my pain on a numerical scale that topped out at my worst pain ever.

      Leaving aside the question of whether a guy who can’t even make sense of a clock is up to such a task, my worst pain ever was the ICH I had just had, and I was pretty sure “5” on a scale with that as “10” was not going to convey my reality very well.

      I mostly said “8” because it was usually the only number between 5 and 10 I could remember. Then I got a new nurse and she said “On a scale of 1 to 5 …”

      1. Terry Flynn

        You describe very neatly a lot of what is utterly fatuous about these pain rating scales. For the numbers to work (i.e. be averaged etc) then they must be cardinal. 4 must be twice as bad as 2. The difference between 2 and 5 must be the same as 4 and 7. Etc.

        Decades of research in mathematical psychology (look up AAJ Marley and others) show this has NEVER EVER been shown. Even a given single human isn’t consistent! Multiple papers have shown we all “rescale” at retirement – the “scores” we give no longer are comparable to pre-retirement scores. There is NO WAY they can be, given the wealth of other information we have collected.

        Real answers come from discrete choices (and how successful consumer good producers get demand predictions right). Does person X prefer A or B? How often? Etc. Pain scales would be much better if you were asked to compare your pain to *recognised* painful events.

  24. Onward to Dystopia

    I wonder, if you don’t have Trump Derangement Syndrome, is there a reason to watch the news at all anymore? Maybe it’s just a slow news summer, but I can’t be the only one who thinks they’ve squeezed this lemon long enough.
    Is everyone really this brain broken? I just can’t think about Donald Trump, shivering and shaking in the fetal position, a dark corner somewhere 24/7. But these people, I’m convinced, the last thought in their minds as they blink out of existence on their deathbed will be about Donald Trump. And they want it that way.

    1. Screwball

      I read something yesterday, but don’t remember where, CNN covered the Trump dealings for over 20 some hours of the day, if I remember correctly. Nothing at all about Hunter, or JFK Jr. suing YouTube. Trump 24/7 it will be.

      Glenn Greenwald has a video up with a CBS talking head going on about Jack Smith that I found quite telling as well. Here is a Twitter link which is all I have at this time;

      Greenwald on Smith and CBS


      aired what can only be described as a sexually-charged homage to special counsel, Jack Smith—somehow delivered under the guise of a news program.

      It’s borderline pornographic.

      In the real world, all my PMC friends want to talk about is where Trump is going to spend the rest of his days in prison. Of course nothing is bad enough for them. Gitmo is a popular choice, but most prefer a noose. That pretty much goes for his followers too. They believe the “Red Hats” are going to overthrow the country and install Putin style fascism because Trump is on Putin’s payroll.

      One guy calls the mental institution escapee Keith Olbermann “King Keith.” He listens to his podcast. I didn’t know KO had a podcast, but wondered why anyone would want to listen to an unhinged idiot? Well, they both do sound pretty much alike, so there is that.

      Greenwald also talks about these people and how unhinged they really are. I can’t argue with anything he says (see entire Twitter thread). It seems about 1/3 of our country has lost their minds. The bad part is, I think their ignorance (which they seem quite proud of) and hate for all things not them is making me crazy too.

      Just stop with all the insanity.

      1. petal

        The oldies station in our area has CBS radio news every hour. CBS radio news has been opening their session with Trump charges stuff since it broke the other day. It’s obsessive.

        1. Randall Flagg

          I’ll see your Trump dominated CBS radio news at the top of the hour and raise you with the across the board breathless reporting by NPR and it’s associated programs (Here and Now, 1A, On Point) for hours on end.
          Of course if trump disappears tomorrow, I still doubt if they would turn any attention to the Biden Crime Syndicate

    2. Mildred Montana

      Onward to Dystopia: I feel your pain. Outside of the half-hour evening national news and some of the local stations from Seattle, LA, Detroit, and Chicago, I rarely watch US news anymore and that most emphatically includes CNN. Trump day and night and any number of talking heads all saying the same thing, smug in their agreement. How long is this going to go on? How long can it possibly go on? Until November 2024? Oh gawd.

      The current state of CNN gets me thinking though (on the occasions I tune in) and that’s fun. For one thing: What motivates intelligent well-off people to go in front of a camera and misinform millions? And do it day after day, without finally admitting their mistakes and quitting the charade? Surely at least one of them must eventually see the light, issue a mea culpa, and go home and write a tell-all book about the news business. Those are interesting psychological/sociological questions to ponder and I do, while *not* listening to the blather.

      Another thing: What is the anatomy of lying? I mean that both figuratively and literally (Burton’s “The Anatomy of Melancholy”). In order to attempt to answer that question, I’ve taken to closely watching the expressions and body language of the assorted dissemblers to see if I can pick up some “tells”. (So far It seems to me there are quite a few “dead” eyes looking into those cameras or at each other.)

      Anyway, this mental exercise is far more entertaining than the programming and it’s something that everybody *can* try at home!

      1. Robert Gray

        > I feel your pain. Outside of the half-hour evening national news and …,
        > I rarely watch US news anymore …

        On a visit to America in the mid-late ’00s, I stayed one night with some friends who liked their news. It was a time when the war in Iraq was still hot but it had somewhat gone off the boil; i.e., GIs were no longer dying on a daily basis. Anyway, we watched a programme called ‘World News Tonight’ from one of the big networks. I was curious and paid close attention. It seemed like each story lasted two or three minutes, then came a series of adverts. Total ‘content’ in this half-hour broadcast couldn’t have been more than 15 minutes. But I kept waiting and waiting and at the end I just had to shake my head: this ‘World News’ contained not a single report, not a word, about anything that had occurred outside of the US, not even Iraq. I mean, we know that (most) Americans live in a bubble but this was absurd.

  25. Fred1

    As to the arguments that the 1/6 case against Trump will provide Trump with an absolute defense to the charges.

    First in any case in which the state of mind of the defendant is material to either the prosecution’s or the defendant’s theory of the case, statements of the defendant, as well as statements of others made within the hearing of the defendant, can be circumstantial evidence of the defendant’s state of mind. For instance, knowledge, intent, mistake or absence of mistake, reliance or lack of reliance, good or bad faith, reasonableness or unreasonableness are some that may apply to this case.

    A good illustration of this in a more common setting is self-defense. Did the defendant have a reasonable fear that the victim was about to launch a violent attack that would likely cause death or serious bodily injury?

    So, Trump’s statements or for that matter the statements of any other defendant in any other case in any other Court are not protected by the 1st Amendment, provided they are material and relevant to one of the issues of the case and are otherwise admissible under the Rules of Evidence.

    I added a lot of qualifications to the foregoing. Certainly Smith knows that Trump will make this argument, as well as multiple variations thereof, to both the judge and the jury. Because of this, I think Smith drafted the indictment in such a way to make it as bulletproof as possible against Trump’s 1st Amendment arguments.

    Obviously this case is sui generis. Trump was the president after all. So who knows what the trial judge and the appellate courts will do.

  26. Fred1


    As to the arguments that the 1st Amendment will provide Trump with an absolute defense to the charges set forth in the 1/6 indictment.

  27. semper loquitur

    The wonderful Glen Loury presents a wide ranging talk with Jay Caspian Kang, a journalist and writer, about how Affirmative Action actually plays out in favor of elites at the Ivies. It’s, among other things, about a curated experience for rich kids. Kang discusses how the admissions officers he interviewed returned to the same example of a dorm room full of diverse students, say an inner city kid, a rich kid, and an exchange student, all swapping stories and making new friends. He explains that it’s for the benefit of the elite child, the less fortunate students are a kind of NPC to their carefully (sorry) curated experience. The rich kids pay to be there; the city kid and the exchange student are essentially paid to be there.

    Glen goes into an interesting side discussion about how the student bodies at elite schools break down. You have your Affirmative Action students, broadly speaking. Their job is to provide some, um, color and that all-important moral patina to the school’s image.

    Then you have your geniuses. This group is necessary to keep the schools academically competitive. That’s the other half of the image.

    Then there are the rich kids. They are the prize, of course. Everyone else is there to keep both the rich kids and the world convinced that they are a bastion of progressive and brilliant ideas:

    Affirmative Action: It’s all about the Rich Kids | Glenn Loury & Jay Caspian Kang | The Glenn Show

    0:00 How Jay’s position on affirmative action changed
    12:15 Jay: I can’t see the virtue in affirmative action as it’s practiced
    20:07 Why did so many Asian students defend policies that discriminated against Asians?
    25:35 The hidden cultural argument in the California Mathematics Framework
    32:01 Is the “people of color coalition” coming apart?
    34:55 Why so little outrage over the SCOTUS affirmative action decision?
    42:26 When students internalize artificial trauma narratives
    49:06 America can’t economically decouple itself from China. Will anti-China rhetoric wane?
    55:49 What will and won’t change in the wake of Students for Fair Admissions v. Harvard
    1:05:29 Isn’t there some value to diversity in education?

  28. Jason Boxman

    I hadn’t realized, but this piece by Leonhardt also excused liberal Democrats leaving immunocompromised people to die; by simply declaring there’s no risk, a slight-of-hand:

    Most immunocompromised people are at little additional risk from Covid — even people with serious conditions, such as multiple sclerosis or a history of many cancers. A much smaller group, such as people who have received kidney transplants or are undergoing active chemotherapy, face higher risks.

    So that’s what happened to the moral panic about immunocompromised; It’s hard to keep track of what the Democrat hivemind believes. Once these people served the liberal Democrat purpose of vaccine shaming, they were discarded, kind of like minorities are discarded after every election, having voted “correctly”.

    He goes further on Twitter when posting his story, stating that SARS-COV-2 is now no different from any other respirator virus.

    Fun times. The Twitter really does give you an opportunity to see who and what these people actually stand for, as if it doesn’t come out in their writing in the NY Times and other places of state propaganda.

    1. cnchal

      First, about three-quarters of U.S. adults have received at least one vaccine shot.

      Second, more than three-quarters of Americans have been infected with Covid, providing natural immunity from future symptoms. (About 97 percent of adults fall into at least one of those first two categories.)

      Third, post-infection treatments like Paxlovid, which can reduce the severity of symptoms, became widely available last year.

      At this point, I don’t care anymore. Let them repeatedly infect themselves and soon enough they will rot away. They cannot be helped. Natural immunity from future symptoms is not the same as natural immunity from future disease. What a stupid way to misdirect.

      Jawb one is don’t get it. At least roughly a quarter of Americans are still on the ball

      1. Jason Boxman

        My larger concern here is, if the stories about immune disregulation and t-cell exhaustion are true, that this might be a kill shot. If it is anything like AIDS, we’d be looking at death at a scale heretofore unimaginable; but I haven’t read anything about this or seen anything about this. I don’t have any background in biology, so I have no idea how many ways you can have t-cell exhaustion and still be okay or whatever.

        At a minimum, we know from last year’s triple-demic that we’re headed into a future — it is here today — where people are going to be sick more often, and sicker, and some of that is going to lead to “excess” death. It’s just a question of at what scale; is it enough to breakdown society itself? Break the wheels of capitalism?

        I have no idea; No one’s talking about the systemic effects 3-5-10 years into the future; COVID Twitter is mostly about protecting oneself today, not about what is to come.

        1. Raymond Sim

          What I’ve been telling my family is that if infection with SARS-2 is one tenth as bad as infection with HIV, then it will do ten times as much societal damage. And as things stand it’s entirely plausible that SARS-2 infection will come to be seen as worse than HIV.

          It’s a situation where reality is outrunning my capacity for hyperbole.

        2. cnchal

          > Break the wheels of capitalism?

          Covid is like the spike belt across the road that flattens tires and the tire carcasses are shredding. The wheels are next, as we are not stopping to fix the tires.

          Whenever I think about this, my outlook grows a bit dark. The constant lies from the “sick care leaders” has destroyed trust. Corporate profits trump the health of the corporate exploitees that make the profits. It’s not getting any better. Now Brandon wants to force government exploitees back into the office, and for what? The profits of real estate tycoons is moar important than the health of the bureaucrats. It goes on and on like that. Taylor Swift concerts as superspreader events, massive crowds passing covid around and what’s on the idiot box? News media interviewing moms and their daughters about what an exciting night ahead while bragging about how ridiculously expensive tickets are. A week later they are sick as hell, but what a good time was had by all. I don’t know how to price that value.

          Why would those large and in charge discuss this openly with the peasants? That would require contrition and honesty going forward, something the congenital liars at the top of the heap are not capable of.

          Up thread is a link to a letter to the editor to the Boston Globe. Long Covid Has Destroyed My Life.

          I would love nothing more than to “finally ignore COVID,” as the headline to Dr. Ashish Jha’s July 31 op-ed reads (“With a few basic steps, most of us can finally ignore COVID”). As a healthy, vaccinated, and recently boosted 35-year-old, I did what he said: I ignored COVID-19 on a weekend trip with friends in September 2022. But the infection I got as a result has all but destroyed my life.

          Jha, Walensky, Faucci, Mandy, they were careless people and when things go bad they retreat into their vast carelessness, leaving the mess for individual peasants to clean up. What’s really important is they make bank as it happens.

          Bunker futures are hotter than ever.

    2. Jason Boxman

      Back in January, the AMA begged to differ that immunocompromised are off the hook in: What doctors wish patients knew about COVID-19 reinfection

      “Because the viruses are continuing to circulate … they’re continuing to mutate and immunosuppressed patients have a higher risk of adverse outcomes if they get reinfected,” said Dr. Crum.

      “We also know they don’t respond as well to the vaccines,” she said, adding that with “the immunosuppressed, we still need to be concerned even if they’re vaccinated—our guard needs to remain up.”

  29. Dida

    A word of caution regarding Phenomenal World and its many daughter sites, such as Polycrisis. I visited them yesterday in pursuit of a text called ‘The class politics of the dollar system’… And that, to me, was like honey to a bee! Just like ‘Global boiling’, it had a catchy title, started with a descriptive diagnosis, and ended with ‘solutions’ for a distressed humanity. But whose solutions were those: who was talking to me and for what purpose?

    A ‘publication focused on political economy’, Phenomenal World has plans for expansion into other disciplines – ‘economics, history, finance, policy, and politics’ – and belongs to a family foundation, Jain Family Institute, founded in 2014 by Bob Jain, Founder and Chairman. As to their goal, I encountered the usual word salad that reflected a non-specific yet straightforward ‘globalist’ agenda: ‘Our mission is to address pressing social problems by identifying and building high-impact interventions that translate to real world progress. A platform for research and social entrepreneurship, JFI brings global policy from theory to practice.’

    More research followed. Robert Jain, who is the poster child for financialized globalization, started as an options trader with one of the largest options trading firms in the world, later bought by Swiss Bank. After two decades at Credit Suisse, a ‘global systemically important bank’ where he served by the end as head of the asset management division, he joined Millennium Management, one of world’s largest alternative asset management firms, as Co-Chief Investment Officer. In 2022, he left after an overhaul in the top ranks, and is now busily ‘assembling a team as he seeks to launch the largest-ever hedge fund’ (Bloomberg); it is also ‘one of the most anticipated hedge funds in history’, with Wall Street investors ‘justifiably salivating’ (Business Insider).

    To conclude in regard to Phenomenal World, just be aware who stands behind it: the prospective father of world’s largest-ever hedge fund, who has a degree in Government at Cornell, and has created his own institute to ‘bring global policy from theory to practice’.

  30. ChrisRUEcon


    “…floating on calm seas…”

    Not sure if that call out was a sarcastic one. My assumption is that it’s a reference to the “doldrums” a.k.a. the Inter-Tropical Convergence Zone (ITCZ). I’ve thought of other potential uses for that windless calm, namely carefully spaced hovering drones for internetworking. It’s a mad idea to be sure but if we can have balloons for internet, why not ITCZ drones? ;-)

    1. ChrisRUEcon


      This saddens me to great ends but makes me ask why it has to be so in a multipolar world where a country like China is courting allies globally. Take this section:

      “But grabbing loot is not the criminals’ only goal. Sanctions are meant to undermine governments and create unrest. The Chavez and Maduro presidencies used oil wealth to provide free health care. The Children’s Cardiology Hospital of Latin America is located in Caracas, and as the name suggests it cared for children throughout the region.

      Now that hospital performs surgery without necessary equipment, such as sternal saws, because the U.S. punishes any nation that dares to do business with the targeted country. “

      Why is this still a thing? Can Venezuela not get equipment like this from China or via backdoor paths just like Europeans are getting Russian gas?! Something is seriously off with this whole BRICS/SCO thing. Areas like this are where I think China and Russia could be making a real difference but it appears they are not… yet??

      1. jrkrideau

        Why is this still a thing? Can Venezuela not get equipment like this from China or via backdoor paths just like Europeans are getting Russian gas?

        Who makes that equipment? If it is not a company in Russia or Iran what company wants to risk US sanctions and watch its entire business be frozen?

        Who would handle the financial transactions? SWIFT won’t work and any bank could end up under punitive US sanctions.

        Just how easy is it to ship embargoed materials to Venezuela if the USA is going to freeze the transport company’s accounts and maybe its ships and planes, etc.

        Maybe Venezuela can get the equipment from China or Russia but can China or Russia afford a navel escort to shepherd it to Venezuela? Well for small shipments it might only take an Antonov An-124 a few times a week.

        Backdoors are fine if you have a massive economy and contrivance on both the buyer and seller’s sides.

        1. ChrisRUEcon

          Thanks for your response!

          > Who makes that equipment? If it is not a company in Russia or Iran what company wants to risk US sanctions and watch its entire business be frozen?

          There was a recent article posted here about products put together in Turkey from Chinese parts. Where there’s a will there’s a way is all I’m saying

          > Who would handle the financial transactions? SWIFT won’t work and any bank could end up under punitive US sanctions.

          Here is where alternate constructs (like the Chinese Unipay or bilateral arrangements) can help. I know … we are not saying something as evolved as a BRICS currency, but …

          > Just how easy is it to ship embargoed materials to Venezuela if the USA is going to freeze the transport company’s accounts and maybe its ships and planes, etc.

          The Chinese are also masters of reverse engineering. I cannot imagine that all but the most proprietary or advanced types of medical equipment could have have Chinese equivalents in relatively short shrift. Perhaps I am over optimistic here, though …

          In terms of shipping, that’s a good point … but you provided a nice answer:

          > Well for small shipments it might only take an Antonov An-124 a few times a week.

          I’d love to see the US try to escalate by targeting Chinese or Russian vessels delivering stuff to Venezuela. I’d like to think Blinkin’ and Nod(ding Off Joe) aren’t that crazy, but then again …


          1. tegnost

            Where there’s a will there’s a way

            even russians can figure out how to make a hamburger (/s )

    2. ChrisRUEcon


      Wot a load of pearl-clutching horse shit from fetid usual suspect NYT.

      “Cry more …” as the kids say these days.


    3. ChrisRUEcon


      Well, well … has it really come to this?!

      I can imagine the post-assassination hagiography. WaPo and NYT will go on for weeks with it. Is another Time Person of The Year out of question? They’re gonna name a block in NYC’s theatre district after him, aren’t they? Probably the same one Hamilton plays on.

      I’m still betting on a week of Russia sorties to end this once and for all … the cleaning ladies will know where to find him.

  31. chuck roast

    The Arabic media on Israel’s crisis: Don’t interfere with its implosion

    The Zionists have lost Martin Indyk! My head explodes!

  32. Willow

    re: Biden’s Ukraine quagmire
    Biden isn’t in control of US foreign policy which is is driven by spite & revenge. Sole focus is to create enough pain & chaos for Russia that Putin is deposed. This is the end game. And State will keep doubling down until either this happens or we have WW3 and history burns.

    1. ChrisRUEcon

      > Biden isn’t in control of US foreign policy which is is driven by spite & revenge.

      US foreign policy is driven by capitalist greed, and the conscious desire for the US ruling class to have dominion over as much of the world’s resources and capital as possible. With Russia, it’s further a case of US failure to fully capture the lion’s share of Russia’s state assets after interference in Russia’s 1996 election. The dismantling of the USSR under Yeltsin instead yielded local and global-trotting Russian oligarchs. Putin put paid to any attempts at Western control of Russia’s vast resources, and Russia’s schism with the West is now complete. Russia now sees western (EU/UK/US) for the lying, conniving lot they are and they will look east and to the global south in increasing measure. I am hopeful we won’t get WW3 … if only because political unrest borne out of increasing suffering of the masses in Europe and the US will lead to leadership changes.

  33. ThirtyOne

    🇯🇵 72 years ago, the United States tested a nuclear weapon on the Japanese.

    A memorial service was held today in Hiroshima to commemorate the victims of the American atomic bombing, but none of the Japanese politicians mentioned that the bombing was carried out by the United States.

    At the same time, politicians recalled the “threats with nuclear weapons” from Russia.

  34. alfred venison

    I’ve been reading Martyanov since Maidan, he & Raevsky (The Sakar) helped me get through that personally trying period emotionally intact & not thoroughly misinformed. I believe he thinks the U.S. Navy is still competent & stacks up well against the Chinese navy, but not the U.S. Army or Airforce, which, in his characteristically not so humble opinion, would be thoroughly trounced if they were to go toe to toe, eyeball to eyeball against the Russians. With regard to WWII, he thinks the U.S. Army’s role in Europe is vastly overrated, but that the U.S. Navy’s role in the Pacific is rated appropriately. In short : the Red Army and U.S. Navy won WWII. I hope I haven’t grossly misrepresented his views. -a.v.

  35. anon

    I wish that someone other than me would look at and remark on the Stanford University wastewater site data. Both for the past 12 weeks, and since the start of the pandemic. On August 4th, just three days ago, they recorded the biggest spike ever. But it is not XBB; there is a big spike of XBB but the giant spike is instead of the nucleocapsid gene of all variants (If I’m understanding correctly). What is up with this? What is it, if it is not XBB? And why do there keep being these giant spikes? This is not a time when lots of people are around; it is summer.

    I have not seen monster spikes like this on any other wastewater site.

    1. Raymond Sim

      Wow, that is a big spike!

      I think the overlay is making it appear as if the source of the nucleocapsid is unaccounted for. When I deselect the ‘All N’ then I see a big XBB spike.

      I never know what to make of CODIGA. Their numbers are often all over the place, and often wildly at odds with the sewershed they’re a part of. Stay tuned I guess?

Comments are closed.