Links 9/24/2023

No brain, no problem. Jellyfish learn just fine Science. Hence, “The Blob.”

Private equity firms pivot away from traditional buyouts FT


Towards A Symbiotic Science Atmos

Conversations with plants: Can we provide plants with advance warning of impending dangers? (press release) Newswise


Can India and Pakistan’s Historic Water Pact Endure? Foreign Policy


Why can’t we shake the gloom? It’s more than inflation or higher prices. Claudia Sahm, Stay-At-Home Macro (SAHM). ‘Tis a mystery? Not to Sahm. Well worth a read, including the mechanics of discerning “consumer sentiment.”

Long COVID can cause long-term damage to multiple organs, study finds Sky News. “A third of long COVID patients sustained damage to multiple organs five months after infection.” And here is that study–

Multiorgan MRI findings after hospitalisation with COVID-19 in the UK (C-MORE): a prospective, multicentre, observational cohort study The Lancet. N = 250. From the Discussion: “Our study demonstrates the substantial burden of multiorgan abnormalities in patients after hospitalisation for COVID-19, with nearly one in three patients having an excess burden of multiorgan injury. When compared with controls, we noted a higher proportion of lung, brain, and renal MRI abnormalities among patients.” Interesting speculation:

Prion Disease After COVID-19: A Case Report American Journal of Case Reports. N = 1.

Best Air Quality Monitors of 2023, Tested and Reviewed Field & Stream

Nipah virus outbreak: What to know about the deadly disease spread by bats Fast Company. “Nipah virus is spread from bats and pigs to humans through direct contact or contact with their bodily fluids.” Since I stan for aerosol transmission, I think this latest iteration of droplet dogma is premature, and I would like to see aerosol transmission ruled out definitively. See, e.g. (granted, an animal study).


Eyebrows raised at China’s state-owned players’ increased stakes in European ports Container News

‘Serious hurdles’ to motherhood worsen demographic crisis in China South China Morning Post

The Koreas

Taepodong 2 – The North Korean Missile that Never Existed: How Western Analysts Mistook a Civilian Satellite Launcher for an ICBM Military Watch


US Envoy Confirms Canada Received ‘Five Eyes’ Intel Against India One India

Crisis in the Bread Basket Phenomenal World

European Disunion

Polish far-right party jostles for third-place powerbroker role FT

New Not-So-Cold War

Latest news on the war: these past two days we have advanced considerably to a full-blown Russia-NATO war Gilbert Doctorow. Important.

Why America Should Send Military Advisers to Ukraine (excerpt) Foreign Affairs. The deck: “On-the-Ground Help Will Bolster Kyiv Without Risking Escalation.” Commentary.

Russian Foreign Minister says Moscow will not consider proposals for ceasefire in Ukraine Ukrainska Pravda. Sergei and the football…

Ten Reasons Why Putin Might Prefer the Risks of a Compromise Peace to the Costs of a Forever War with Ukraine and the West (PDF) Geoffrey Roberts. A Russian specialist.

* * *

Leopard 2 manned by a German Bundeswehr crew destroyed – Russia

After Leo 2 and Challenger 2 Losses, Ukrainian Intel Chief Warns Incoming Abrams Tanks May Not Last Long in Combat Military Watch

* * *

Zelenskyy speaks before Canadian Parliament in his campaign to shore up support for Ukraine AP. Whoops:

The History of Fascism in Ukraine Part I: The Origins of the OUN 1917-1941 Internationalist 360° (2022). Parts II and III. I’m finicky about footnotes and linky goodness for specific claims, and I’m not seeing a lot here. Still, if you’re putting together a scorecard, you need the names of the players…

* * *

The Patriot The Atlantic. Milley. Fan service. “Though the specter of a recklessly instigated nuclear confrontation abated when Joe Biden came to office…” As opposed to a cautiously instigated one, say through a proxy war?

Nord Stream sabotage one year on: What to know about the attack Al Jazeera

No, the World Is Not Multipolar Foreign Policy

What you need to know about Azerbaijan-Armenia conflict in Nagorno-Karabakh South China Morning Post. The “What you need to know” (shorter: “What to know”) phrasal template leaps the East-West barrier and claims another victim.

Nagorno-Karabakh’s Armenians fall victim to the EU’s dependence on hydrocarbons and Pashinyan’s betrayal The Duran. Didn’t geography something to say? “Nagorno-Karabakh does not directly border Armenia but is connected to the latter through the Lachin corridor, a mountain pass.” Granted, the mountain pass was controlled by (Russian) peacekeepers, but the situation seems fragile, to say the least.

Biden Administration

Biden to join the picket line in UAW strike Politico. Remember when Obama was going to put on his “comfortable shoes” and “walk that picket line with you”? Good times. More than optics from Biden? Time will tell.

McCarthy backtracks, says he will keep Ukraine aid in Pentagon funding bill The Hill

Supply Chain

South America’s Richest Family Doubles Fortune on Shipping Bet Analysts Hated Bloomberg

The Supremes

How the Supreme Court could alter the way Americans interact on the internet USA Today


Judge overseeing case to remove Trump from ballot agrees to order banning threats and intimidation AP

US presidential candidate DeSantis opposes Ukraine’s NATO membership Ukrainska Pravda

The Georgia Fake Electors Scheme: What Does Legal and Political History Tell Us About These Charges? The Federalist Society

Democrats en Déshabillé

Whose Fault Is It? How Things Work. “Democrats need to accept that the class war is real.” Unfortunately, since at the very latest Bill Clinton, the Democrat Party and its PMC base have labored tirelessly to indoctrinate voters that anything and everything but the class war is real. Republicans have done the same, of course, but we expect it of them.

Workers Bark Back on “The Green Dream or Whatever” The Liberal Patriot

Spook Country

Echoes across the airwaves Brookings Institution. The deck: “How Kremlin narratives about Ukraine spread (or don’t) on US political podcasts.” A sample:

In moments of genuine uncertainty, pundits speculate. That creates an opening for the Kremlin to seed its preferred version of events. Importantly, Moscow doesn’t have to convince anyone of its view, but simply clear a much lower bar: that pundits air Moscow’s narrative as a possibility worth considering. This was the case around the Nord Stream 2 pipeline explosion, where many took a “question more” approach. In doing so, they frequently aired the “CIA did it” theory as a legitimate possibility. Podcast hosts and guests often leaned on a Substack post written by investigative journalist Seymour Hersh, as well as Biden’s threat to “bring an end to” the pipeline should Russia invade Ukraine, as evidence.30 Hersh, unsurprisingly, was also a fixture in Russian state media coverage of the bombing, including appearances by Hersh on RT31 and Sputnik radio32 broadcasts. Hersh’s claims were met with pushback from some quarters. ‘I don’t think there’s any reason to believe that we did it,’ said a guest on the Glenn Beck Show, which refuted Hersh’s theory in three separate episodes.33

First, thanks for the heads-up, guys. Second, thank heavens for the podcasting tagline, “wherever you get your podcasts.” There is no podcasting “platform” for the Censorship Industrial Complex to infest and suppress (thanks to podcasts being distributed via RSS). Third, watching Brookings — in full public view, mind you! — citing (footnote 33) an unnamed guest on the Glenn Beck show (!!) to refute Hersh… Well, it’s almost too rich, is all l can say (and does make me speculate that we’re looking at elite post-Covid brain damage and loss of executive function).

Digital Watch

‘Robots can help issue a fatwa’: Iran’s clerics look to harness AI FT


CDC recommends Pfizer’s RSV vaccine during pregnancy as protection for newborns CBS

The Final Frontier

Could You Stand on the Surface of Jupiter? Exploring the Enigmatic Outer Planets JSTOR

The loss of dark skies is so painful, astronomers coined a new term for it

Book Nook

Octavia Butler’s Advice on Writing The Marginalian

Quantum poetics Aeon. The deck: “Language both enables and interferes with our grasp of reality.” No kidding! Interesting read, though.

Sports Desk

Saturday Is Coach Prime’s Time Bloomberg. Deion Sanders (!).

Zeitgeist Watch

Who the hell are 2girls1bottl3? The Face

Tech expert claims to have found doomed MH370 jet on Google Earth New Zealand Herald (Furzy Mouse). Big if true.

Class Warfare

Kaiser unions issue a 10-day unfair labor practice strike notice as bargaining further breaks down HealthCare Dive

Opinion: Food banks are buying groceries at an astounding rate Colorado Sun

Psycho-Politics New Left Review

A New Way to Protect Against Heart Attacks WSJ. Colchicine.

Antidote du jour (via):

Bonus antidote:

See yesterday’s Links and Antidote du Jour here.

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About Lambert Strether

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


      1. furnace

        Touché. Still feel that anthropomorphize is better than dehumanize, if only as metaphor. Given the current track record of presenting plants as unfeeling repositories of resources to be extracted, perhaps a different angle may yield better results, regardless of scientific accuracy.

    1. Bsn

      Furnace, can’t agree strong enough. Long time gardener here and it’s so obvious. For example, when growing pole beans (Fortex are the best) as they grow their first “stringers” but can’t quite reach the support structure (they can grow 8 – 10′ high), if I take one and guid it (wrap it to the) bottom the structure, within 1-2 days all the others have found where to grab and grow. I’ll translate what they say into English…..”Hey guys, over here”.

  1. timbers

    US Envoy Confirms Canada Received ‘Five Eyes’ Intel Against India One India

    Is that like when we shared with the world that Saddam had WMD and Colin Powell explained it all to us? Anyways, men from United States, United Kingdom, Australia, Canada and New Zealand and the rest of The Garden don’t wear skirts and dresses in public like Jungle Modi does in the picture with the appropriately dressed Trudeau. You’d think India would have learned something from England when she was still a colony.

    So The Garden is going to split India away from BRICS / Russia just like it divided Russia from China and the rest of the world. Looks like it’s already starting to work. We can sit back and relax to some extent knowing The Garden is doing everything it can to hasten it’s fall. The team running The Garden never learn. India looks to be an increasingly solid member of The Jungle against The Garden. Early on I had a sliver of doubt India might tilt Garden, but those days are over. The Garden has seen to that.

    1. furnace

      The thing is that people from colonized countries have a long memory, as opposed to the blissful ignorance of empire. The “Forgotten War” is anything but in the Korean peninsula; the massacres, rapes, and general horrors committed by imperial powers and never redressed (how could one even attempt to do so?) still burn brightly in the minds of those alive. So now that the West is seemingly more and more incapable of maintaining its grasp over the rest of the world, these “small matters” (in the case of India the Bengal Famine is more than enough justification) will weight heavily as to which side the Third World is going to stick with.

      1. vao

        In a conference (some 10 years ago, I cannot exactly remember) assessing the strategical position of Western countries, Régis Debray identified short-termism as one of their 5 major weaknesses. He reminded the audience that the rest of the world has quite a long memory regarding the injustices inflicted by the West upon it, and emphasized his point with the following metaphor:

        You quickly forget the slaps given to other people, especially if you tend to give lots of them. But the slaps you receive, you will remember them quite well and for a long time.

    2. jrkrideau

      Maybe I am a bit cynical but was the intelligence from the USA?

      Mind you, I am not saying that it may not be true. I, originally, put it down to factional disputes in the Khalistan Independence Movement but an Indian Agency is quite possible.

  2. hardscrabble

    Gilbert Doctorow’s blog today: Latest news on the war…

    disturbing to say the least

    1. Ignacio

      I believe that the analysis made at The Duran (Search in “Russia Doubles Military Spend, Output Surge, Ukr Objective Tokmak; US Delay ATACMS, Manpower Crisis”) is more well pointed than that of Doctorow. The ATACMS were going to be sent one way or the other. The delay in the announcement has to do with US exerting pressure on Zelensky.

    2. Aurelien

      Not convinced. In the first case, all headquarters buildings of this type have secure operations centres a long way below ground. In the Soviet era, they were built to withstand nuclear attack, so a Storm Shadow would just bounce off. It’s quite possible that part of the above-ground building was damaged, and that some poor security guard or passer-by was killed. But the NATO authorities would be perfectly aware that they stood no chance of seriously damaging the HQ itself, so this would have been purely demonstrative political attack.

      So far as I know, the German Constitution still forbids deployment of forces outside Germany without parliamentary approval. Twenty years ago, the Bundestag had to be recalled from its summer holidays to vote to allow German forces (and so NATO) to deploy to Afghanistan. Even if there was some clever way round this for small groups, what on earth would be the point of a single tank, wandering around obviously fairly near the line of contact, with no compatible communications, unable to speak the language, and, according to the story, completely unprotected? If the idea was to make a difference militarily, then you’d probably have to send at least a brigade, in order to have all the supporting capabilities you would need. And whilst the Germans could probably manage to cobble together an operational brigade from bits and pieces, the idea that it could magically disappear from various garrisons in Germany and reappear more than a thousand kilometres to the east strains credibility a bit. Someone would notice the recall of reservists for example. I suppose it’s possible that the Germans have somehow sent reconnaissance teams to find out what’s going on, not trusting the Ukrainians to tell the truth, but you don’t put them in an an unaccompanied tank of a type that the Russians are explicitly trying to destroy.

      1. The Rev Kev

        I suspect that this is going on a lot more than the public is aware of. Look at the Poles for example. Last year there were 2,200 of them returned to Poland in body bags and last I heard that number was up to 10,000. A lot of them were regular army who took off their Polish flags from their jackets and slapped on Ukrainian ones. Saw a video clip some time ago of a group on a small bus actually doing this. So why are they doing his? Combat experience. Learning what works and what does not work in modern warfare and taking those lessons back to the Polish military to apply. You cannot learn that from a book or just seeing it on videos. You need actual combat vets. So if the Poles are doing this then probably so are the Germans, the Brits, the Romanians, the Americans and who knows who else. Reaching back into history, the Germans did precisely this in the Spanish Civil war and whose lessons were applied when war finally broke out.

        1. Henry Moon Pie

          Very true. Ukraine is turning into the 30s Spanish Civil War where new equipment and new tactics were employed for the first time in the warm up to The Big One.

        2. Alice X

          In the Spanish Civil War, the airplanes the Soviets sent the Republicans were described as being from the Catherine the Great Air Force.

          The Germans did send their modern machines (and crews) to Franco while the Americans (Texaco) sent petroleum (on credit) to fuel them.

          So today Russia has the machines and the fuel and Ukraine has a hodgepodge.

          1. hk

            I think that characterization comes straight from Western historians’ hubris looking down on primitive Slavs.

            Soviet tanks and warplanes of mid 1930s were more advanced than anything in the world: I16 (the primary type sent to Spain) was the most advanced fighter in the world when its prototype first flew in 1933. I15, the second most common type, was and remains one of the most advanced biplane fighters the world has ever seen. Granted it’s a biplane, but biplanes we’re still a fairly common sight well into World War 2, although not so often as frontline fighters, admittedly. The T26 tank was, bar none, the most advanced tank of 1930s. The Soviet fighters look old when you compare them to World War 2 designs, but there was a quantum leap in aviation technology in in the decade following the start of the Spanish Civil War. It’s worth mentioning that the fighters that Germany and Italians originally sent were also biplanes and they were outclassed by the Soviet types, with the balance turning only when Germans began sending pre-production (and later full production) BF109s (and even then, I16s were a match even against the early model BF109’s).

            1. Alice X

              Thank you for the information. I’ve read Antony Beevor’s The Spanish Civil War and found it worthwhile. He was clearly pro Republican and especially sympathetic to the CNT which may have led to a bit of an anti-Soviet bias.

              Still, I would be interested to know the ratio of the Soviets newer machines versus surplus ones they must have also have sent. The Republic was not well supplied on petroleum as was Franco and that certainly had a bearing.

        3. vao

          So if the Poles are doing this then probably so are the Germans, the Brits, the Romanians, the Americans and who knows who else.

          France is an intriguing case.

          In the first few months of the war, there were quite a lot of indications pointing at a French presence in Ukraine: pieces of French Foreign Legion uniforms found in the wreckage of Ukrainian helicopters, Macron attempting to negotiate the exfiltration of some mysterious French personnel from Mariupol, several videos of French-speaking pro-Ukrainian fighters in action (often with non-native-French-speaker accents, but apparently fluent with military terminology). That presence seems to have completely disappeared.

          The French army has quite some experience fighting in Africa, but not against modern 1st world military. I therefore wonder what the French are currently doing in Ukraine — apart from sending their self-propelled guns and phased-out reconnaissance vehicles.

          1. hk

            I thought something similar earlier in the year when a Japanese general supposedly died in helicopter crash after a particularly big missile attack by Russians (about half a year ago), although it’s bound to be rather improbable that he was actually doing the poking around himself.

            Japan faces the possibility of a real shooting war with China soonish and they have no combat experience since 1945, let alone one against a modern industrialized opponent with missiles and such. It would be utterly negligent if they didn’t send a team to look around what’s going on in Ukraine under some excuse or another.

      2. Ignacio

        An explanation on why the Russians are silent about these attacks might be that they are testing in real war conditions their air defence systems. Better when Sebastopol is the objective rather than Moscow. If Americans display their ATACMS they might be thinking: good to challenge our systems with these, and those German missiles too. From a pure military point of view they are gaining a lot of info on the capabilities and limits of their air defence systems. Let’s keep silent, they might think.

      3. Lex

        It’s confirmed that the Black Sea fleet headquarters that was struck is not currently the operational HQ. Whether there’s bunker space or the main operations are elsewhere entirely, who knows. And the US, which is obviously providing the intelligence and guidance, would know that. It was a propaganda strike. A successful one but just a propaganda strike.

        It raises the question of whether the US is simply committed to a propaganda war or if it doesn’t feel like it’s capable of doing any more. With the follow up question of whether it believes that propaganda strikes don’t risk escalation. The US is playing with fire though. I won’t be surprised if a reconnaissance drone gets shot down. Of course the correlation between US/NATO reconnaissance over the Black Sea and an attack on Crimea is the Russian early warning system at this point.

        1. Polar Socialist

          Today’s Awful Avalance is quoting Russian media with news that can make one wonder who’s propaganda got the better boost from this strike that had apparently no military value at all.

          1. The Rev Kev

            That article made me think of another way that the west can escalate this war – with bunker busters! There has been no talk of them yet.

        2. Skip Intro

          I think the propaganda war is all they care about. The dynamic of new systems crossing old red lines is becoming regular: a story reports that US will send WunderwaffleX despite international law and likely escalation. Pentagon spokesperson walks it back, neocon at state claims president is considering it, and so on. I wonder if it reflects an internal battle between realists and war lobbyists/ideologues, or just a strategy to shift the Overton window enough to fit cluster bombs and tactical nukes through.

          Probably the US reconnaissance drones will be allowed to presage attacks and be a formal party to the war until Russia chooses to blind them at a crucial moment. If an escalatory retaliation is not reported, did it happen at all?

          1. Lex

            I think it’s completely uncoordinated. The system that convinced itself that Plan A, developed entirely on best case scenarios, would succeed is now just reacting to events it doesn’t really control. The escalations are both reactions to the loss of control and attempts to regain it, even if only within the propaganda domain.

            There is almost certainly a small clique of “realists” but their arguments and facts can’t make it to meetings where decisions are made. Biden doesn’t want to hear that and nobody he’s installed around him is going to be the one to tell him what he doesn’t want to hear.

            The recon is an excellent early warning system. It also suggests that the US isn’t capable of maintaining that reconnaissance 24/7, which would also mean that any losses to the capability would be significant.

            1. .Tom

              If your foreign policy activities are reported in domestic news, they aren’t foreign policy. So what some here call a propaganda war I’d call domestic politicking.

              I’m curious to see how 2024 election politics develops as Plan B: There is no Plan B gradually reveals itself. A bunch of R reps are making lots of “no more money for UA” noise which I think already has support among a significant chunk of voters and that will have to grow as reality seeps through.

              The usual “Putin must be defeated for Freedom Democracy and Human Rights” blather won’t easily hold up against “You keep trying and failing” together with a summary of the failures, costs and losses. But can R pols really face the truth any better than Ds? Idk.

          2. digi_owl

            Both Russia-Ukraine and China-Taiwan seem to be as much about getting congress critters re-elected than any meaningful world politics.

      4. Benny Profane

        I’ll start believing that foreign troops are on the ground and manning tanks when Russia releases video of these captured troops, otherwise, yes, hard to believe that Germany would allow a Leopard to be used by a German army crew, especially, as you say, they are prime targets for Russian kills. I have read that even many Ukranians want no part of western vehicles. That just puts a much larger target on their backs.
        But, then again, the stupid is thick these days, especially around this war, and especially in Germany.

      5. ilsm

        Long range bombing of headline targets is only worth the price of unmanned systems, the value in operational and strategic terms is nil.

        Cheap headlines, with no impact on greater issues.

        ATACMS with a 200 pound unitary warhead, or even cluster munitions is same, cheap headlines, little to no value targets. Same for German headline weapon.

        Good margins for the replacement sales!

        1. begob

          Dima has been reporting that Himars are often used for destroying single artillery positions. Will the Attack’ems suffer similar demotion?

      6. Mark Gisleson

        In his latest video Andrei Martyanov says that during time of war all operations are moved to multiple secret underground facilities. The building hit was of historic, not military, importance.

        Ukraine fighting a PR war right up to the very end.

        1. Louis Fyne

          and add the hypothesis that Ukraine wants to strike Russia in a way that makes Russia strike the main NATO logistics hub in Razenow (sp?), Poland.

          Ukraine wants NATO directly in the war.

      7. jrkrideau

        Andrei M suggests that all operations had moved to bunkers outside the city and that there probably was a small guard and maintenance staff. It sounds likely to me. Pure theatre.

        1. Zack Blabbath

          those are names of fictional movie villains!
          the first one is from “Hellboy”, Hans Gruber (Alan Rickman) was in “Die Hard” (the other Gruber character was in one of the sequels) & Hans Landa (Christoph Waltz’ character) in “Inglourious Basterds”

      8. Feral Finster

        You really think that anyone of influence and authority in Germany gives a rat’s [familyblog] about the German constitution?

        And American snaps his fingers, and a German official’s knees hit the ground with a thundering clap, constitution be damned.

      9. Procopius

        According to three or four of the stories I’ve read, before he died the injured driver gave the location of his brigade. I don’t see how the German government could have expected to send a whole brigade into Ukraine without being caught. This must be a deliberate provocation. I don’t understand why they don’t announce their action publicly — trying to goad Russia into accusing them and then using that as an excuse?

  3. Steve H.

    > Psycho-Politics New Left Review

    Thank you for another opportunity to chomp down on the definitive article:

    > took place in the 1960s when the three emancipatory currents – socialism, feminism and psychoanalysis – were closest to being united.

    Holy flying fark, this ten-dollar word twit just managed to erase Watts, MLK, and the Civil Rights Act. Back to polishing a nice sheen on that ivory tower…

  4. The Rev Kev

    ‘Doctors need to get their heads up’

    I’m sure that what that ‘tern’ means is that ‘Doctors need to pull their heads out.’

  5. JohnA

    Re Nord Stream sabotage one year on: What to know about the attack

    That both Sweden and Denmark are refusing to release any information about their investigations into the attack.
    That Russia has been denied access to the area to perform its own investigation.

    From which one can reasonably conclude that whatever Sweden and Denmark discovered/detected, did not point the finger at Russia, and implicated a party that was anti-Russia and therefore would be extremely embarrassing to the west to reveal.

    1. The Rev Kev

      It’s not so much that old Joe blew up these pipelines but that all these countries are looking at their shoes or looking up into the air and are refusing to stare facts in the face. A coupla months ago a politician in a European parliament caused an uproar & cries of outrage when he brought the subject up there. In all those countries, you are not allowed to state the obvious but have to pretend that the whole thing is a mystery and perhaps it would be best just to forget the whole thing. So long as all those EU countries continue to do so, then you know that they are firmly under the boot of Washington.

      1. GramSci

        Yeah. And al-Jazeera, too. No mention of ol’ Joe’s threat to put an end to Nordstream, or the celebratory NATO tweets after the deed was done. As Lambert would say, ’tis a mystery.

    2. caucus99percenter

      And of the German parties in parliament, the only one that seems even remotely interested in finding out who exactly blew up Nordstream 2, is the AfD.

      So it’s natural that the AfD is now the second strongest German party in the polls — they’re the only real opposition at the moment, the only voice protesting the various deceptions being pulled on the German public by the media and political elite.

    3. Skip Intro

      As is often the case, the most important obvious facts are completely erased from discussion. It is undisputed that Biden promised that Nordstream would be stopped if Russians entered Ukraine. What if the Russians invaded and nothing happened? That would clearly undermine the credibility of the entire US, and worse, be aired in GOP campaign ads along with pictures of happy Gazprom oligarchs. Once Biden promised that, the path to the long-desired termination of Nordstream was cleared. How is that promise not the starting point of any investigation?

  6. Benny Profane

    The Foreign Policy piece about advisors in Ukraine is just filled with stupid, but this one stands out: “Strategic-level advisers, in particular, could guide Ukraine through the process of executing defense reforms, such as establishing a transparent and accountable procurement system for defense equipment.” Oh, you mean like the same “system” we have here in the good old U.S.? When was the last time we had a proper audit?

      1. pjay

        Not Foreign Policy, but Foreign Affairs, the Council on Foreign Relations journal, which makes it even more striking in its amnesia and criminal negligence.

        So how do an “Assistant Professor at the Bush School of Government” and “a Ph.D. candidate at the LBJ School of Public Affairs” get such an article published in Foreign Affairs? Someone important obviously likes them and likes what they are saying.

        1. Polar Socialist

          Well, Council on Foreign Relations was the merry bunch who under the wings of Gordon Hull took over from the “Ivy League dilettantes” in the State Department and reneged pretty much every agreement USA had made with the other allies, especially Soviet Union about the peace and prosperity after the war thus willingly causing the Cold War v.1.

    1. jrkrideau

      Should be good. Those advisors know exactly what to watch for. Napoleon did not make Joseph Fouché head of police for no reason.

      The FP article is behind a paywall for me. Did it deal with US casualties?

    2. Aurelien

      To my certain knowledge, western countries have been doing this anyway for at least the last fifteen years. Ukraine has been a priority for training in professional skills, with results … well, let’s not talk about that.

  7. mrsyk

    “Why can’t we shake the gloom?” Might have something to do with the three headed hydra existential crisis that crashed the party. And no, not one of those heads is named “inflation”.

    1. Cassandra

      Three headed hydra, or the four horsemen of the apocalypse? One could argue that if, due to inflation, groceries are unaffordable then it might as well be called a famine.

    2. Malatesta

      Rejoice! “Inflation is slowing down”, but prices will never go back down or even stop growing. Everything is more expensive, except what you get paid relative to inflation, minus higher taxes and fees for what was once free.

      Comparing to 1970s is BS, we had manufacturing, unionization, a functioning civil society, relatively crime free streets, and coherent communities with a common culture.

      Taking the cue from NC commentariat, suspending all discretionary spending until early 2025. Not one more dollar spent in the much and self heralded, “Bideneconomy!”

      1. Lee

        “…fees for what was once free.”

        Friend of mine was recently in a fender bender on one of our local city streets in which there were no injuries nor was there a car fire. In addition to the police, a fire truck also showed up, did nothing, and departed. For the latter, she was billed $500 by the city.

      2. PelhamKS

        Excellent points. So inflation spiked, wages predictably didn’t come close to keeping pace, and now inflation is slackening and we’re mysteriously unhappy. Wages nationwide would suddenly and uniformly have to spike up to make up for the damage done. How likely is that?

    3. Jabura Basaidai

      started reading that piece and wondered what planet that person was on thinking it was just the end of the pandemic and inflation – that caused the overbearing gloom that is prevalent – DUH! – reading the comments yesterday was brutal for me – won’t go into why – everything is broken – here’s Sheryl Crow & Bonnie Raitt – doing the Dylan tune “Everything Is Broken” –

      at least within this blog it feels that folks understand that the cultures we live within are rather a joke and at least your comments and banter are refreshingly honest – y’all are the closest to what i would considered friends without actually sitting across from one another and having a beverage – thank you thank you thank you – oh yeah, also the plants know what we’re doing, it ain’t anthropomorphizing thinking we are one with the natural world – damn i cry every f#@king day at the debacle we have brought – better go throw the frisbee for Roscoe before i collapse in anger and frustration – damn it –

        1. Jabura Basaidai

          you’re welcome – have a furry visitor for 10 days, Pippa, she’s a sweetheart and runs Roscoe ragged unless he has the frisbee and makes her chase him – now if human relationships were that easy i’d have a trunkfull of frisbees – was going to go with the Dylan version but saw the Raitt/Crow version in the side panel and it rocked and liked Ms Crow on the harp – guitarist was smokin’ hot –

    4. NYT_Memes

      Just maybe the gloom isn’t only economic. We have been dragged through about 25 years of wars, lied about every one, lied about covid and especially lied about Ukraine. What this really means to me (confirmed by many chats with everyday people) is that our media isn’t telling us honest news and people are sensing it even if they haven’t had a “lightbulb moment”. Everything in the news is “Off”.

      People just can’t eat the dog food anymore.

    5. Jeremy Grimm

      Perhaps “Why can’t we shake the gloom?” asks the wrong question based on false assumptions. I believe the question tacitly assumes that the data presented in the pretty graphs can better measure the ‘true’ economic situation individuals face than those individuals can assess for themselves. This suggests a different question: “For whom does the data best measure their individual economic situation?” — or restated based on the assumption that individuals are capable of assessing their own situation — “Whose sentiments most closely follow the data?

  8. John

    American advisors in Ukraine … openly? As in big headlines, US Advisors Operating with Ukrainian Armed Forces … that sort of advisors? As the commentary presented by Lambert says, the FP writers have lost their f#%$&*g minds. I remember when there were just a few American advisors in Vietnam in the late 1950s. I also remember the panicky departure from Vietnam in 1975. In between all those people with their names on that wall in DC died. So did several million without a DC memorial. But the kicker is, no one in DC was fondling nuclear weapons except a couple of nut jobs. But now? today? Is being number one so important that civilization and /or humanity et al must be destroyed lest egos be deflated?

      1. Jabura Basaidai

        ah yes, “Canticle for Leibowitz” – still have my copy, i save all my books – daughter thanks me – just pulled out my copy of Vonnegut’s “A Man Without A Country” – always liked the title and liked it even more after reading it the first time – also pulled out my copy of Patrick Suskind’s “Perfume – The Story Of A Murderer” – wonder if any of the literati here are familiar with this novel?

    1. chris

      Yes. It makes you wonder what would cause our leaders to stop and admit defeat. They’re fully in the “watch the world burn” mode now. If that post script describing the tank crew as German is real, that is significant news. What will Russia do when the pretense for proxy war is stripped away? And what kind of message does that send to China, or Iran?

      We are actively initiating WWIII now. No God should forgive the fools pushing this disastrous policy.

    2. SocalJimObjects

      We are rapidly heading towards a “win win” solution.
      America : “we can’t allow the enemy to win”
      Russia : “we can’t allow the enemy to win”
      China : “we can’t allow the enemy to win”
      etc, etc

      Well the solution to that is …..

    3. digi_owl

      I swear, Vietnam is the “trauma” that USA can never let go of. It seems to define everything that has been done since, from Grenada on up.

      Basically the national psyche is stuck ruminating about Vietnam and how it could’a/should’a/would’a won “if only”.

      1. vao

        Actually, I wonder how much Vietnam was a consequence of Korea — another traumatic military experience where the forces of the USA were nearly annihilated twice, and could just achieve a draw (despite resorting to ruthless strategic bombing campaigns) against what were considered backwards and ideologically dumbed-down countries (China and North Korea).

        1. digi_owl


          But Korea was, and continue to be, a stalemate. US forces are still present in the south, maintaining a capitalist “democracy” of sorts.

          Vietnam on the other hand was a televised rout.

      2. hk

        The problem, really, is that VN is the only war where “the enemy” basically got to dictate the terms, depending on who “we” are. One might say that it’s not the only war: the Civil War, again depending on who “we” are, was another one–and “we” haven’t gotten over that one yet either…

        1. Roland

          Afghanistan was a clear-cut defeat. The Western troops and officials are gone. Their client regime is gone. Taliban control more of the country than they did in 2000.

  9. john

    Book Nook: Octavia Butler. See Conversations with … , published by University Press of Mississippi.
    In our age of Chatbox industrial publishing, Butler wouldn’t have a hope of being promoted and published. She arrived just in time. Wonder who gains from her IP.

    1. Mildred Montana

      Strangely, I’ve never heard of her let alone read her. Must be missing something; her advice on writing is eminently sensible and jibes with that of other writers.

      Besides reading and writing constantly (which Butler strongly recommends) George Orwell is reputed to have copied out long passages of Swift and Somerset Maugham—from memory! He said the prose of those two taught him to avoid excessive use of adjectives (in line with Stephen King’s admonition against adverbs).

      Orwell’s admiration for Maugham surprises me. Although I’ve read and enjoyed everything he (Maugham) wrote, most critics dismiss his writing as “middle-brow”. Maugham himself, perhaps too modestly, placed it in “the first row of the second rank”.

      Yet he is still read today. Maybe old George was right to use him as a teacher.

  10. YuShan

    “Why can’t we shake the gloom? It’s more than inflation or higher prices.”

    I think that much more than before, people now see how broken the system is and how they are being played. The inflation “good news” is a case in point. We are supposed to be happy that prices were flat(ish) over the past 6 months. But prices are still double what they were 1-2 years ago and everybody knows they won’t go down. People are permanently poorer now.

    Then how the oligarchs came out of the pandemic much richer while 70%+ of the population are (much) poorer in real terms. How is that possible? Naturally the rich have more to lose during a crisis. This just shows how rigged the system is. It wasn’t just during the Great Financial Crisis of 2008, this is how it always works. It is just too obvious now to everybody.

    If people were naïve enough to think that institutions and government have their back, it’s abundantly clear now even to people who don’t really follow economic news that this is not the case. Most people now expect that the future will suck for them.

    On top of the pure economics, people also see that society as a whole is broken. There is no social cohesion, no larger vision or aspirations, just empty consumerism. Everything is a product and we are here to be milked for profit, to benefit a handful of elites. And fewer people feel a sense of security of having a pension or healthcare in the future. And $33T gov debt and $1.5T deficit, with no realistic path to fixing this?

    Instinctively, most people now feel that things will be downhill from here. Much more important than absolute levels of wealth is the direction that things are heading. You can be quite poor, but if you can believe that things will be progressively better for you in the future, you can feel happy and hopeful. But now we have the opposite. And the same is true for society, which is clearly falling apart. This pessimistic outlook has been in the many other metrics for a very long time now, notably fertility.

    1. Henry Moon Pie

      How would you not see that the country you lived in was failing: Covid, climate, Afghanistan, the border, crime? It’s collapse across the board.

      It’s now reflected in the polling. I just watched ABC’s Sunday morning talk show, and the new ABC/WaPo poll has Trump leading Biden 51-42. I kid you not. Now they dismiss it as an outlier, but the other numbers are even worse for Biden. And a majority of those polled would blame the Democrats rather than the Republicans for any government shutdown.

      They’ll have to call Obama back to fend off the torches and pitchforks. Folks are in an angry mood.

      Biggest number of all: 90%+ are unhappy about energy/gasoline prices. Wait until these KSA/Russian cutbacks hit a little harder. There is one constant politically in the country. Americans worship gasoline. Stupidest timeline or stupidest country?

      1. flora

        I would rephrase it this way: It is being collapsed across the board.

        There’s nothing organic about this, there’s no organic reason to not aid Lahina or East Palestine or Detroit or the border towns. There’s plenty of govt money for assisting those communities, there’s currently no political will to do so. There’s a consistent pattern, it looks like a plan of some kind, not organic.

        1. jsn

          Politics has been converted into a market.

          All other feedbacks to the system are now discounted by market operations.

          Political will exists in spades where it aligns with the market for policy: extraction subsidies; death & disability for profit; lucrative proxy war. The oligarchy is bloating at an unprecedented rate.

          1. flora

            Milton Friedman and the neoliberals’ dreams come true. The following quote is from a book review of Philip Miroski’s 2013 book ‘Never Let a Serious Crisis Go to Waste: How Neoliberalism Survived the Financial Meltdown.’

            “[The book] demonstrates at length how the triumph of neoliberal ideology has reached into every corner of out lives: destroying, distorting and redefining so that everything takes a market form. The self is reconstituted as fragmented set of maximizing actions, and corruption is redefined as exclusive to the state, exculpating market actors from any suspicion of involvement.”
            -Colin Crouch


            Shorter (my take): per neoliberal ideology the market is pure and impartial, the state is corrupt and partial, therefore it is right for the market to control the state. The state should never control or regulate the market. Profits above all other considerations.

            The neoliberal argument is bs, but greedy people find it very attractive. ( I’m not saying we have greedy politicians or anything. Mark Twain had something to say about honest politicians. / ;)

      2. Cassandra

        I was struck by the argument in the article that while inflation was undeniably worse for the bottom four quartiles, it wasn’t really that much worse than for the more fortunate. The author conveniently ignores that even before Covid, most Americans could not handle a moderate financial setback.

        When you are teetering on the edge of the precipice, it doesn’t take much of a push to go right over the edge.


      3. Feral Finster

        “They’ll have to call Obama back to fend off the torches and pitchforks. Folks are in an angry mood.”

        They’ll draft Michelle Obama or Oprah or somebody, anybody, to keep the wheels from falling off the neocon bus if need be.

        As it is, it’s probably not necessary. If the RNC doesn’t prevent Trump from getting the nomination, keeping Trump off the ballot in a couple swing states will be more than enough to ensure a Biden win in ’24.

        Then, the MSM will proclaim as one, that The Voice Of The People Has Spoken!

    2. .human

      I think that much more than before, people now see how broken the system is and how they are being played.

      Just to be clear here, “The System” is not broken. Most things are going according to various plans. “It’s a big club…”

      1. Henry Moon Pie

        I think that’s far from settled, unless you’re inside enough to know. You have to explain an awful lot of “losing” and bad things happening under elite management as just 11th dimensional chess on their way to their ultimate goal. Covid was a huge failure. Yes, the billionaires and their top level PMC got their way, but they’re just beginning to pay for their choices. They weren’t pursuing any long term plan. They were reacting to the unexpected and completely unable to focus beyond the S&P 500.

        The garbage that comes from the WEF is just pie-in-the-sky to keep the Establishment feeling good about itself. Politics is out of control, and they’re not the sort to try bear spray on the Capitol steps. The courtroom is their bailiwick, not the street, and they’re at a loss to how they can win if not in “civilized” venues. The conspiracy theory mentioned recently that an immigrant army was being imported to combine with the revolutionary commies was sad and hilarious at the same time. Seriously? This is what you’re afraid of? This is the kind of stuff a Crowder promotes. Radical commie revolutionaries? LOL. Over and over again during that Floyd Memorial Day, I saw the right-wing frat boys and jocks take on “antifa.” It was pretty sad. It was Prime Time’s team at Oregon yesterday. That kind of Left hasn’t existed in this country since the 30s, maybe the 60s with the Panthers. And this so-called immigrant army would only share a little English, not native language, not religion, not even continent.

        The paranoia in the country is getting out of control. People are picking up on things falling apart. They try to repress it for the most part, but that feeling is penetrating and affecting people.


      Well said. I’m reminded of “The responsibility of intellectuals” by Chomsky.

      There is a growing contempt of the like described in that essay where people are sick and tired of some “expert” providing guidance that pisses in the face of common sense and morality. The resulting lack of trust in institutions boils over into all things.

      Then Vietnam, now Covid.

    4. ilsm

      Why does the New York fed need to sell $1.48 trillion (to take liquidity down) in bonds each overnight (had been >$2.2 trillion, and never so huge before) to keep inflation and 5.3% rates????

      How does the music end?

      1. Mikel

        I’ve always wondered if WWI could have started and lasted as long as it has without the creation of the institution called The Federal Reserve.

        1. Feral Finster

          Adam Tooze’s “The Deluge” is most instructive in just how close H.M. Exchequer was to hard default on multiple occasions during WWI, and the measures that the British government took to keep the war financed and going.

          Before WWI, it was believed that any general European war could only last a few months before all sides had exhausted production and financial resources. They were correct, under pre-WWI conditions.

    5. Mikel

      “This just shows how rigged the system is. It wasn’t just during the Great Financial Crisis of 2008, this is how it always works…”

      Ms. Sham needs to look at charts that zoom way out and then think about the real trends in the economy:

    6. Adam Eran

      Just a comment on “And $33T gov debt and $1.5T deficit, with no realistic path to fixing this”

      Why sabotage your political opponents when you can persuade them to do it to themselves with comments like that?

      The “debt” is a problem in the same sense your bank’s “debt” to you (i.e. your bank account) is a problem. The government’s “debt” is currency. Dollars actually *say* they are “debt” — They are Federal Reserve Notes, and a note is legalese for an IOU.

      Many people believe “tax & spend” is the way federal fiscal policy works, but that’s impossible. Where would taxpayers get the dollars to pay those taxes if the monopoly provider of (legal) dollars didn’t spend them out into the economy first?

      So it’s really “Spend first, then retrieve some dollars in taxes,” not “tax & spend.” So spending is independent of tax revenue. Taxes don’t provision federal programs; they can’t.

      And what do we call the dollars spent, but not yet retrieved in taxes. You know, the dollars in your wallet or bank account…? Obviously these are the dollar financial assets of the population. Perhaps less obviously they are also national “debt.” Telling the government to reduce its “debt” is roughly like marching down to the bank to demand it reduce the size of its debt (i.e. the size of your account). Not very sensible.

      Taxes are important to create the demand for dollars. They do not and cannot provision federal programs (which makes the current impoverishment and immiseration of the population even more sadistic and despicable). Dollars are IOUs. What does the government owe you for your dollar? Answer: a dollar’s worth of relief from an inevitable liability: Taxes. Note that the direction of obligation isn’t from taxpayers to some anonymous bondholders, or Chinese exporters. It’s from the government to the holders of dollars (or bonds). The obligation is to pay the holder another dollar, or wipe out a tax obligation.

      All the whinging about national “debt” is actually a plea to cut Social Security and Medicare (with the military, these comprise 85% of federal spending). Don’t fall for it.

      Incidentally, the most “sensible” objection to this point of view is that “just printing money produces [hyper]inflation!” That’s not true either. The Japanese debt was ~240% of their GDP even before U.S. inflation hit, and they had very modest inflation, if any. The Cato Institute’s study of 56 hyperinflations throughout history validates this too. A central bank “run amok” printing did not kick off even the Weimar and Zimbabwe inflations. Shortages of goods and a balance of payment problem initiated the price rises.

      1. Roland

        All that currency did not create itself. Do not downplay the direct responsibility of the monetary and political authorities for hyperinflation.

        In every case of high inflation, people in charge decide that runaway prices are a preferable outcome.

        For example, in Germany, the new republican government decided that hyperinflation was the quickest and easiest way to eliminate the war debts that were owed to millions of German domestic bondholders. The government and central bank pursued this policy, regardless of any other effects that it might have on German society.

    7. ChrisPacific

      Minor point – this part:

      And $33T gov debt and $1.5T deficit, with no realistic path to fixing this?

      is less of a problem than you think (see the MMT articles on this site or read ‘The Deficit Myth’ by Stephanie Kelton).

      It does illustrate your point though. Government knows the deficit is not a problem, as shown by their votes on defense funding, corporate welfare, the War On Everybody, or weapons for Ukraine. It only becomes a problem when the subject is social spending, healthcare, economic support for communities etc. or if another round of debt ceiling brinkmanship is needed to whip voters into a partisan frenzy and distract them from other issues. So whether the government is telling the truth or lying to you about the deficit, the conclusions are equally grim.

      1. eg

        The deficit and debt are a distraction intended to avoid the necessary political conflict over priorities by substituting a bogus “economic” constraint which doesn’t really exist.

  11. Adam

    Re the Brookings Institute article. The McCarthyites are back and they’re seeing commies everywhere. I better check under my bed to make sure none have crawled in there.

    1. The Rev Kev

      If the McCarthyites were right, then that would be a good reason not to keep your money under your mattress.

      1. chris

        Mr. Trudeau is all in for Ukraine. Who cares if there are noughtzis or banderites involved?

        Not for the first time, I really would like these fools to lay out their argument for what would happen to the US or Canada if Putin “won”. I’d like them to explain it to us citizens. I’d like us to have a chance to support the motion or reject it. I’m tired of my country committing atrocities without end in my name.

        1. North Star

          Members of the Canadian legislature clapped their hands until they were red and puffy for Zelensky’s recent appearance and presentation to parliament. Delusional is too weak a description. I have written to my MP a number of times asking for rationale as to why our PM is promoting war over peace, with no response as expected. Once this conflict is over there will also be a strong likelihood of no political accountability for the disastrous decisions made on behalf of Canadian citizens.

          1. jrkrideau

            What do you want to bet that almost all of them are totally ignorant of the real issues and history but they have a lot of the post-WWII Ukrainian Diaspora in their ridings who are lobbying and propagandizing like mad?

            I’m in South-Eastern Ontario and I have a Ukrainian Catholic Church 600 metres from me. We have some good Ukrainian dancers in town too.

            1. Feral Finster

              If they are in fact ignorant, which I doubt, does Google not work in Canada?

              They are sorry that they got caught. That they didn’t predict the uproar that followed. That is all.

          2. Mildred Montana

            “…why our PM is promoting war over peace…”

            Well, being Canadian, I think I can offer an informed guess. To wit, anything Trudeau does or says is simply vote-scrounging in search of his long-cherished majority government. He has no compass other than that. Ukraine supporters and Sikh separatists in Canada, they are just voters to be pandered to.

            And then there’s this from two days ago. In offering his condolences to the family of a slain police officer he tweXted, “Today, an officer in Coquitlam lost their life.” Yup, he used that horrible locution “their” though the officer was male and 51-years-old. I wonder, did he bother to ask the family for permission before neutering their son, brother, father?

            Regardless, just another example of Trudeau grovelling for votes—this time in the “woke” constituency. This is all that motivates him.

            1. jrkrideau

              Well, as any politician, he is not going to alienate that large a voting block if he can help it but I really do think most MP’s are that ignorant and Chrystia is likely feeding Trudeau on the Ukrainian file. She’s an expert. See has the degrees to prove it plus that apartment in Kiev.

              I just watched the Speaker of the House introduce Hunka.

              The Speaker introduces him as a proud Ukrainian-Canadian who fought for Ukrainian independence against the “Russians” in WWII.

              The Speaker does not seem to realize the bugger was fighting against the USSR, a Canadian ally nor, that if he was fighting against the USSR, he was fighting for Nazi Germany.

              Hunka is also from the Speaker’s riding of Nipissing—Timiskaming.

              For heaven’s sake, the Speaker has a undergrad degree in Poli-Sci. Don’t political scientists learn any history?

              It starts at ~48:30

              By this time, it looks like the members and senators would have given a standing ovation to a passing seagull.

              1. upstater

                Canada House speaker apologizes for recognition of veteran who fought for Nazis

                The speaker of Canada’s House of Commons on Sunday apologized for praising an individual at a parliamentary meeting who served in a Nazi unit during World War II.

                Two days earlier, Speaker Anthony Rota had recognized 98-year old Yaroslav Hunka as a “Ukranian hero” before the Canadian Parliament. Hunka served in World War II as a member of the 14th Waffen Grenadier Division of the SS, according to the Friends of Simon Wiesenthal Center, a Jewish human rights group that demanded an apology.

                Oopsie! He said it was an “oversight”…

                1. The Rev Kev

                  Jewish Canadians – and probably Canadian vets – were seriously unhappy about having a Nazi given a standing ovation in Parliament. They knew exactly who this guy was and what he was all about. The Canadian political elite have lost their mind and the deliberate fight with India is a further sign of this.

          3. Kouros

            Good to hear I am not alone in writing to my MP on such issues:

            “I was reminded to respond to your email by seeing the House applauding a 98 years old veteran that, while presumably fighting for an independent Ukraine, hitchhiked his faith and his cause’s faith to the Nazi Germany. An independent Ukraine then and now was/is a Ukraine considered pure of any non-Ukrainian blood and non-Ukrainian speakers – I know from watching Hungarian and Romanian news that the Ukrainian legislation persecuts minorities, a fact acknowledged by the 2019 Venice Convention in its report to the EU on the matter. Aleksey Arestovich, former adviser to the President Zelenski, admitted that much in an interview, after he was relieved from his duties, of the lunacy of persecuting the Russian minority in Ukraine, never mind the Hungarian or Romanian minorities there.

            This 98 year old veteran’s 14 Waffen Galician Division was famous for killing civilian Poles and Jews. The same as the present Azov Battalion has burned alive about 50 ethnic Russians in Odessa in 2014, or killed scores of civilians between 2014 and 2021 in Donbas.

            And now the whole world, thanks to the Associated Press, has seen the Canadian Parliament acclaim a Nazi collaborator, regardless of the circumstances. Are we to see the Canadian Parliament in the near future applauding some former German veteran living in Argentina for fighting against Evil Russia between 1941 and 1945, a Russia that was a Canadian Allay at the time and that contributed to the destruction of 75% of German war machine, just because right now the US cannot find an accomodation with Russia? I think that the acclamation the world has seen the other day is a stain that will be hard to remove from the face of our body politic. Together with the present Indian debacle, it shows how dangerous and ill conceived is to allow particular minority constituencies to drive national interest.

            Sincerely and respectfully yours,”

            However, my letters were all responded, most of the times with platitudes, but not always.

        2. Synoia

          Mr. Trudeau is all in for Ukraine.Of course he is. Consider it a bright shiny object to hide many other ills.

      2. jrkrideau

        Of course not. Mr. Trudeau in an idiot about international affairs and tends to rely on his ministers’ advice. That’s how we got into the Huawai/Meng Wanzhou mess.

        I wonder if Chrysta Freeland still has that apartment in Kiev?

        The PM and the Government have no say over who gets invited to the House but you would have thought that someone, maybe from Global Affairs would have whispered in the Speaker’s ear.

        I am totally disgusted that a Waffen SS solder was there. It was the 12th Waffen SS that massacred about 150 Canadian prisoners of war in Normandy.

        1. Feral Finster

          Even assuming that Trudeau really is that clueless, lol, Freedland is not, and it’s not like anyone in the Canadian Parliament apparatus is capable of doing even the most basic research.

          They knew full what they were doing, and if they didn’t, it’s because they didn’t want to look.

  12. The Rev Kev

    “Ten Reasons Why Putin Might Prefer the Risks of a Compromise Peace to the Costs of a Forever War with Ukraine and the West”

    With all due respect, the author of this article – Geoffrey Roberts – has gone well past his use-by date if he is serious here. So a quick counter to each of his points-

    1-Russian casualties: Yes, the Russians are losing good people but if they do not stop NATO here, then they will have to accept nuclear missiles on their borders which could cause tens of millions of Russian deaths.

    2-The Nuclear Danger: There is only one side waving nukes and it is not the Russians.

    3-Regime-Change in Kiev: Before too long the west will wash their hands of the Ukraine and the Zelensky regime will flee.

    4-Russian Public Opinion: All the missile attacks and raids has convinced the Russians to see it through to the end.

    5-Pressure from the Global South: The Global Majority knows that if Russia goes down, then they are next on the menu so will support Russia.

    6-Reconstruction of Incorporated Territories: They are already doing it and most of Mariupol for example has been rebuilt which help gives a boost to the economy.

    7-Slavic Solidarity: Russia knows who pushed their Slavic brothers into a civil war and there will be accounts to be settled.

    8-Restoration of Russo-Western Commerce: The west will never end their sanctions on Russia. Never. Those are permanent.

    9-Global Co-operation: Should it be pointed out that most of those problems have been created by the west?

    10-Birthing a New World Order: Again, it is the west that is pushing a Orwellian dystopia of a permanently divided world of warring blocs.

  13. Alice X

    Perhaps familiar to thinking expressed hereabouts:

    ‘Capitalism is dead. Now we have something much worse’:

    Yanis Varoufakis on extremism, Starmer, and the tyranny of big tech – Carole Cadwalladr @ the Guardian

    In his new book, Technofeudalism, the maverick Greek economist says we are witnessing an epochal shift. At his island home of Aegina, he argues it’s no longer the global finance system that shapes us, but the ‘fiefdoms’ of tech firms

    1. Alice X

      On second blush I think the Cadwalladr piece could easily have been found in the likes of, say, Good House Keeping. Whatever great truths Varoufakis has uncovered are not to be echoed much in her piece. I haven’t found much better, so maybe (in the voice of Gilda Ratner) never mind.

      1. pjay

        Yes. Cadwalladr is a Guardian-type liberal, similar to our NY Times-type liberals. Her stance on foreign policy in recent years has shown her to be yet another apologist for Empire. Yet as a “liberal” (in the US/NY Times meaning of the word), she can still show some sympathy, usually mixed with condescension, for a “left” leaning economic perspective that is somewhat critical of economic elites and favorable toward their victims. Thus the somewhat sympathetic/condescending discussion of Varoufakis and his book. That Varoufakis can be covered in this way by Cadwalladr in the Guardian also demonstrates that he is not really a threat to the Establishment.

        In my view, anyone who claims “capitalism is dead” is part of the problem. We are certainly moving rapidly toward a New Feudalism, and “Tech” is a big part of it. But this is just the latest stage of a global capitalism that is a long way from dying.

        1. Alice X

          A money (quite literally) quote on Varoufakis, from her piece:

          “I have no issues with luxury,” he says at one point, which is just as well because the entire scene would give the Daily Mail a conniption, especially since Aegina seems to be Greece’s equivalent of Martha’s Vineyard, home to a highly networked artistic and political elite. Tsípras, the former prime minister and Varoufakis’s nemesis, used to live next door. “He was on the next hill. There’s a symbolically important ravine between us,” he says.

          Maybe the ravine was not so great as he (Varoufakis) is perhaps something of a bourgeois ¿Marxist?

  14. The Rev Kev

    “US presidential candidate DeSantis opposes Ukraine’s NATO membership’

    Others may disagree but DeSantis kinda reminds me of France’s Macron in that he will see which way the political winds are blowing before taking a position. And if public opinion changes or some pressure group comes down on him, like a weather-vane he will veer the other way.

    1. Pat

      My line on HRC in the early 2000s was that she would wet and stick her fingers in the air first thing every morning so she would know what weasel words to say as she tried to be Prom Queen. Ron wants to be Prom King just as bad.
      At least DiSantis can still take popular positions while trying to get some traction with the public. (Fake as they are.) Finger in the air Hillary Clinton would still be touting that Ukraine support is necessary to safe Democracy and World peace in an environment where 90% of Democratic voters vehemently disagree. Not even faux disagreement with Ukraine support is allowed in today’s DNC.

    2. Benny Profane

      Well, if that’s the case, then Desantis sucks at reading the public, considering his vanishing poll numbers, not that he was all that popular north of Florida ever. I’m still astounded that he thought going after Disney was a smart political move, and he still won’t budge on that. I mean, millions of American save billions to travel and spend money in Orlando, like some sort of Mecca. And it’s not as though the Florida school system, up to grad school, is going to ever attract the best and brightest after what he’s done, although it was hardly competition to top systems before that. He also has all the charm of an assistant principal.

      1. Expat2uruguay

        About that Florida education system. I was raised in the college town of Gainesville Florida in the seventies and as a young girl they identified me as “gifted”. When I got to high school I was funneled into the clerical business education program, where I could become the best dadgum secretary ever!

        Well, it turned out that I spent most of my high school years cutting my boring classes and smoking marijuana with the college students. I barely graduated. (late, because I had to make up a PE class, which was apparently the only class that would fail a student for non attendance!)

        It wasn’t until I was 22 and talked to my father* who lived in the DC area that I ever even heard the word “engineer”! And it stuck: I became a civil engineer.

        *Mom and Dad divorced when I was one. He became a toxicologist for the EPA and my mother, ironically, graduated as a PE teacher who for reasons of mental instability didn’t work in her field.

  15. Pat

    If I were pregnant you wouldn’t be able to get me anywhere near a Pfizer RSV vaccine. There are two untrustworthy entities re pregnancy safety pushing this. Pfizer and the CDC.

    All big Pharma has not been trustworthy for decades regarding safety, side effects and efficacy. But it saddens me greatly that the reason for its existence has been totally destroyed and the CDC has become detrimental for human health and safety as it is now a tool where elite economic interests are served first and foremost.

    1. Katniss Everdeen


      It is beyond insane that one cigarette or glass of wine–“indulgences” that were completely unremarkable in pregnant women 50 years ago–are today considered potentially fatal fetal assaults, while new, experimental drugs during pregnancy are “approved” and “recommended.”

      As I write this, I am awaiting the birth of my first grandchild. Her name will be Violet. My 32-year-old daughter’s due date was this past Friday. Reading this article literally brought tears to my eyes at the thought of the big pharma dr. mengeles using my already precious, innocent, unborn Violet as a lab rat in their ghoulish, gene-editing experimentation for profit, and the dullard “dr.” mandy cohen’s purchased acquiescence to it.

      According to the Mayo Clinic:

      Respiratory syncytial virus, or RSV, is a virus that infects the lungs and respiratory tract causing cold-like symptoms. It’s so common that most children have been infected with it by the time they’re 2 years old. The virus can also infect adults. Self-care measures are usually all that’s needed to relieve discomfort…

      It seems that as our for-profit “healthcare” system “evolves” (some might legitimately say devolves), relying on the consumption of pharmaceuticals as it so massively does, the diseases that are advertised as the most “fearsome” and “deadly” are the ones that pfizer and moderna have managed to make a modified mRNA “vaccine” for. Whether it’s “true” or not.

      1. The Rev Kev

        Was thinking along the same lines earlier this evening and how I have lost all faith in the medical authorities here in Oz. Listening to them talking in the first year or two of the pandemic, I could not decide if they were talking more about medical matters or their personal portfolios. But it was remarkable the number of medical professionals that would go on TV and after they briefly touched base on medical matters, then spent the rest of the interview talking about the economy. WTF.

        P.S. Best wishes for the birth of your first grandchild Violet. That is the same name as one of my own granddaughters.

          1. Vandemonian

            A strong name with a powerful history. The Suffragette colours were green, white and violet – standing for Give Women Votes!

      2. Cassandra

        The Mayo clinic notes that for RSV,

        Self-care measures are usually all that’s needed to relieve discomfort…

        The unsaid qualifier is “for people with working immune systems.” However, last winter a lot of people ended up in the emergency room with RSV, and they were not all newborns. Hmm.

        1. Katniss Everdeen

          According to the National Foundation for Infectious Diseases (NFID), there are “an estimated 100-300 deaths among children younger than age five years annually” from RSV.

          And according to Statista, in 2021 there were 22.9 million children aged 0-5 in the united states. The unborn are not included in these numbers.

          I will leave it to the math wizards here to calculate how many unnecessary “vaccinations” must be given to healthy children age 5 and under in order to prevent 1 death.

          This is particularly salient in this case since this RSV “vax” is another modified mRNA drug, the long term effects of which are as yet unknown. The record keeping of adverse reactions has been chaotic and obfuscatory. As a result, tens of millions of otherwise healthy children are being put at risk of conditions they may never have experienced but for exposure to an insufficiently evaluated, experimental drug, for an infection from which they are in no danger. It is beyond unethical.

          The risks predisposing to childhood death from RSV are known–premature birth being a big one. A “healthcare” system actually concerned with “health” would concentrate on resolving the issues that make certain children susceptible to diseases that most can easily survive, rather than overly medicating the already healthy ones.

          1. Cassandra

            I agree with your concerns about exposing children to interventions without clear benefits vs risks.

            My worries are that last winter’s “unusually severe” wave of RSV infections is a harbinger of historically mild illnesses wreaking havoc among a population whose immune systems are damaged by relentless repeated Covid exposure.

            Edited to add that unfortunately, we have a “healthcare” system rather than actual healthcare.

      3. Carolinian

        Wow and tell it. Also best wishes for the coming event.

        Seems the historic “making things up” side of medicine persists. That life or death power over the public may also corrupt or corrupt absolutely. If only there some organization–say government–to keep it honest.

      4. chris

        First congratulations! I hope your family has all the joy a new baby can bring!

        “It is beyond insane that one cigarette or glass of wine–“indulgences” that were completely unremarkable in pregnant women 50 years ago–are today considered potentially fatal fetal assaults, while new, experimental drugs during pregnancy are “approved” and “recommended.””

        It makes a lot of sense actually. It’s all of a piece with what NC discusses everyday. Beyond being vices that common people enjoy, cigarettes and other things are known to cause issues that create lifelong problems in children if they’re exposed to them in utero. Because the US is such a disaster, no one who has an option here willingly accepts the risk of a ruined professional/social/economic/personal life due to a disabled child. So the same people who have created the fetish of eating clean have extended that to pregnancy. And if a woman doesn’t eat clean and their kid is born with issues, well, they deserve that, right? Because we have to be able to control things. Because bad outcomes only happen to those who aren’t smart, careful, educated, wealthy, etc.

        But with new medicine and science, that has to be better than nature! Here is something good you can put in your body to give your kid an edge before they’re even born. This is the same story people told families and women when we invented formula. Soon prenatal care will no doubt require women to go through a host of new things so that the womb is optimized and those who can’t afford all that will deserve what they get.

    2. Jeremy Grimm

      Much of the testing the FDA’s EULA for the mRNA Corona vaccine abrogated measures introduced in response to problems with a new medicine developed in West Germany in 1956 and prescribed to manage some of the discomforts of morning sickness. The problems resulting from this new medicine,thalidomide, resulted in 1962 Kefauver–Harris Amendment or “Drug Efficacy Amendment” — an amendment to the Federal Food, Drug, and Cosmetic Act.

    3. Jason Boxman

      As has been pointed out to me recently, the CDC recommended vaccination schedule for children has dozens of different shots, which was not always so. To this they apparently intend to add this new experimental shot.

      This is what discredits public health.

      A few years ago, I would have have thought it nuts to doubt whatever the CDC includes in its childhood vaccination schedule. Today, I’m highly suspicious of it.

      That’s tragic, and reflects a complete dissolution of public health as a concept, because I have no doubt that decades ago, CDC recommendations for childhood vaccination were probably essential and life saving. Today, who knows? You have to “do your own research”, unfortunately, and some of these shots, like MMR, are likely extremely valuable.

      But again, who can you trust? Whatever people in your tribe that support your worldview say. If that’s completely anti-vax, well, there goes public health I guess. Much of this only works if nearly everyone is vaccinated, when we’re talking about real vaccines that are sterilizing, and confirmed safe and effective throughout decades of use at this point.

      None of that matters though if our premiere public health insitutation is just a front for capitalist exploitation and big pharma.

      And societal collapse continues, unabated.

      1. Lambert Strether Post author

        > As has been pointed out to me recently, the CDC recommended vaccination schedule for children has dozens of different shots, which was not always so. To this they apparently intend to add this new experimental shot.

        Yes. They should revert to a schedule of a simpler time. Start (as is always my starting point) with what is simple, rugged, and proven. RSV is not that. (Though you can see who CDC is throwing Covid, RSV, and Flu vax into the same bucket purely as a matter of institutional imperatives, and when they started grouping the three together in, well, their propaganda, I should have made the call that an RSV vax was on the way. These charlatans, they work these angles all day. How does a dull normal keep up?)

      2. The Rev Kev

        Was thinking how at one point there was a campaign to label people who wanted to “do your own research” as conspiracy theorists or something. It did not last long but it was there.

          1. The Rev Kev

            This was roughly in the time period when an effort was made to say that ‘Ivermectin was horse paste, y’all’ and I think that you might remember that ad.

  16. antidlc

    T. Ryan Gregory
    Insurance industry coalition forms non-profit to study baffling excess mortality

    A coalition of insurance industry and healthcare leaders have formed a non-profit organization to help global insurers screen, test, and triage members to combat the baffling rise in excess mortality.

    Members of the group, called The Insurance Collaboration to Save Lives, say they were increasingly concerned about excess mortality and morbidity trends that even three years after the start of the COVID-19 pandemic, have not returned to pre-pandemic levels.

    1. Pat

      Hmmm. Anyone else thinking the actuaries have thrown in the towel on trying to calculate the data for life insurance…
      (Watching live television tells me that there is a lot of money in insurance for seniors. I imagine there used to be a lot in insurance for younger people with families that is until more than expected died.)

        1. Pat

          But getting young parents to pay month after month isn’t. That is about family security. And the whole point of that is to get years of payments before they decide it is not a necessary expense anymore. Unfortunately we have a lot of excess deaths, many of them in the timeframe where insurance companies are now paying out hundreds of thousands of dollars a claim instead of walking away with all the payments and no payout. It doesn’t take many of those before their profits take a huge hit.
          Since they don’t know a reason for the excess mortalities, the actuaries cannot accurately calculate the odds of a human dying early. Until they have data the insurance companies are flying blind. And that data can also be used in health insurance calculations later. This is all about the bottom line.

    2. Jason Boxman

      Oops, I read that at first as “excess morality” and I thought, ha, in the health insurance industry? I don’t think so.

    3. outside observers

      “… proactive screening and testing could bring insurers a 50x to 100x return from the mortality savings”
      So, sounds like you can expect to be dropped or have life insurance premiums adjusted upwards significantly if they find covid related markers in your blood.

      1. Cassandra

        [S]ounds like you can expect to be dropped or have life insurance premiums adjusted upwards significantly if they find covid related markers in your blood.

        Seems that could cause real problems with the “just a cold” trope… On the other hand, the insurance industry profits are so very important to Our Economy. Decisions, decisions.

  17. Lex

    The link on fascism in Ukraine is solid, though I agree it could use more serious sourcing.

    On the Canadian WWII vet: this is pretty beyond the pale. As a historical footnote, that Galicia was under the SS does not necessarily mean that all of its members were committed Nazis or the SS type that ran camps. German law forbade non-Germans from being in the Wehrmacht so all foreign forces were under the SS. In reality, the 14th was formed fairly late, 1943 and after Stalingrad when the Red Army was already moving west. The Germans had preferred the Ukrainian nationalist as local “police” and terror forces, plus individual volunteers to special units. (Concentration camp guards in Poland, for example.) The 14th was created because there were manpower shortages for the Germans. In another historical footnote, the 14th was supposed to be part of the defense of Vienna, but it ran away to surrender to the western allies. Which is how the seeds of Ukrainian nationalism were tended in the west.

    The members of the 14th were transferred from POW camps to displaced person camps by the British when the Soviets started asking for people by name. Bandera stayed in Munich, a few went to Britain, a solid handful ended up in the US (some protected from war crimes investigations personally by Allen Dulles) and a lot ended up in Canada.

    1. The Rev Kev

      Before the war, the thought of how the Canadian Parliament could be giving a standing ovation to not only somebody that fought for the Nazis and therefore against Canadian soldiers, but that they did so as part of an SS Division would have been mocked as bad humour. Maybe they should have given that guy a present – a box containing a formal SS uniform for old times sake. A lot of Canadians online were seriously appalled by this so I will not pick on the Canadians here. But many countrie would have done the same and it is not the ordinary people that want to see this happen but the political elite of those countries. And here we are simply seeing what the Canadian political elite are all about. So, what did the old boy say in the end? ‘Slava Himmler?’

      1. Benny Profane

        Jon Stewart still hasn’t addressed his giving an award to an Azov nazi a year ago. It’s a strange world. Everybody had Trump on the brain, now they have Putin. A lot of heads will explode if Trump wins the election, and they have to live with both. I would love to see Rachel Maddow blow up like that guy in Scanners.

        1. digi_owl

          TDS and PDS is two sides of the same coin, after all Trump won against saint Hillary because Putin put his thumb on the scale with Russiagate.

    2. ilsm

      Ukraine soldiers were on the bluff shooting Americans at Omaha beach on D-Day. 716th Inf Div, ‘static defenses’. Using 88’s, mortars, grenades, mk 34’s and mausers.

      Participated in industrial grade pogroms with the Germans.

      1. Harold

        I’d like to have a reference for the first statement, as the Ukrainian nationalists always insist they only fought Soviets.

        1. Darthbobber

          Well, there was quite a mix pressed into service to man the Atlantic Wall, including requisitioned labor from the captive peoples and POWs from Poland, USSR and other places. Doubtless some of the Soviet prisoners were Ukrainian. Such manpower was usually pretty quick to surrender if it’s German minders got killed or otherwise lost control.

          There was even a small group of what turned to be Koreans who surrendered. They had been pressganged into service by the Japanese, captured by Zhukov’s troops in the Khalkin Gol campaign, pressed into Soviet service and sent westward where the Germans eventually captured and re-re-pressganged them. While their military career wasn’t particularly successful, they didn’t die, which gave them a leg up on a lot of their contemporaries.

            1. Polar Socialist

              Your wish has been granted (wikipedia). Well, you still have to get hold of the film, but it’s the though that counts…

              Be warned, though, that many historians are very suspicious of the original story, mainly due to lack of any actual evidence never been found.

        2. ilsm

          got that unit number off internet….

          Stephen Ambrose reported the ukraines on Omaha Beach in his book on D Day.

      2. Es s Cetera

        The 716th were at all three beaches and along the coast but you may be thinking of the 243rd and 709th Ost-Legionen who served alongside the 716th in the Normandy order of battle.

        Yaroslav Hunka wore the Nazi uniform but his unit, the 14th Waffen Grenadier, was deployed against the Allies (e.g. Russia) mainly at Brody (Lviv) and in various anti-partisan (e.g. anti-resistance) activities. So he would have been hunting and killing people who resisted the Germans.

        For me it’s as simple as which uniform he wore, but Canada did a thing a while back where even though all Waffen SS were condemned at Nuremberg, Canada specifically exonerated the 14th of war crimes:

        The Canadian Deschênes Commission

        The Canadian Commission of Inquiry on War Crimes of October 1986, by the Honourable Justice Jules Deschênes, concluded that in relation to membership in the Galicia Division:

        The Galicia Division (14. Waffen grenadier division der SS [gal. #1]) should not be indicted as a group. The members of Galicia Division were individually screened for security purposes before admission to Canada. Charges of war crimes of Galicia Division have never been substantiated, either in 1950 when they were first preferred, or in 1984 when they were renewed, or before this Commission. Further, in the absence of evidence of participation or knowledge of specific war crimes, mere membership in the Galicia Division is insufficient to justify prosecution.[55]

        The commission considered the International Military Tribunal’s verdict at the Nuremberg Trials, at which the entire Waffen-SS organisation was declared a “criminal organization” guilty of war crimes.[56] Also, in its conclusion, the Deschênes Commission only referred to the division as 14. Waffen-Grenadier-Division der SS (Galizische Nr.1), but rejected such a principle.

        This may be why Canadian Parliament thought it a most excellent idea to give a Nazi a standing ovation.

  18. John W.

    Regarding The Patriot from The Atlantic, Goldberg’s intended audience is not the wider population, but rather the military and security services. The intention is to communicate the permissibility of a direct overthrow of Trump, should he win again.

    1. flora

      Taking advice from Goldberg is like taking advice from… I was going to say “from the CDC”, but that angle has been covered. / ;)

  19. brian shore

    The Brookings Inst piece is surprising due to it’s subversive quality. More analysis and history on this NGO would be important given their influence.

  20. Tom Stone

    A few remarks on the “Bohemian Grove” from someone who has lived in the neighborhood.
    Many fly in on private airplanes which are parked based on size, with the largest jets parked closest to the tower.
    If you arrive in a piddly little Gulfstream V you will have a walk of at least 1/4 Mile to the terminal.
    The liquor store/wine shop closest to the Bohemian Grove lays in fine wines on consignment for those who don’t bring a wine cellar on their 737 or 747.
    $500 would be a very inexpensive bottle of wine there , they run into the tens of thousands of Dollars.
    Security starts filtering in weeks before the encampment and there are quarters reserved for them both on site and in local communities.
    There is a LOT of security, including Secret Service.
    Think Camp David, with a mix of Government and private security.
    And high end hookers also show up, I ran across them in the Sebastopol Whole Foods a time or two ( The 6′ tall blonde one legged Domina in full leather with two collared and leashed slaves was pretty obvious).
    Personally, I prefer the Bohemian Creamery to the Bohemian Grove, but I’ve always been considered a bit odd.

      1. Synoia

        Because we have mountains and deserts and rivers between us and DC, and the BS from the east cannot fly that high, or perishes in the desert, or cannot walk on water..

      2. Jeremy Grimm

        I had the impression that the Bohemian Grove was much more than a California manifestation:
        “Social Cohesion & the Bohemian Grove: The Power Elite at Summer Camp”
        [Note: Domhoff has made his book “The Bohemian Grove and Other Retreats: a study in Ruling-Class Cohesiveness” available for download from his website as a pdf file. Look at page ‘x’ of the preface to this book. It contains a chart of Centrality Rankings for 30 Organizations. The Bohemian Grove is #11 in the chart, the Brookings Institute was #9.]

    1. Jeremy Grimm

      As robotics creates smaller and more capable automatons, I wonder whether there might be some way to place listening devices in areas of the Bohemian Grove. During the right year — when political candidates are selected — I imagine there could be some very interesting conversations available for later study and analysis. What is the state of the art for stealth in countering detection of small listening devices?

      Imagine what a fly on the wall might hear in the Bohemian Grove during celebrations. Much of what might be captured would probably be remarkably inane but with a few sparkling jewels scattered within the chaff.

  21. antidlc

    CVS pharmacists stage walkout over working conditions, leaving pharmacy counters closed

    Nearly two dozen pharmacists at the nation’s largest retail pharmacy chain staged a walkout in the Kansas City metro area this week over working conditions they say put CVS Health pharmacists and patients at risk.

    The walkout began Thursday and continued into Friday. Organizers said they had shuttered numerous pharmacies across the metro area, which covers a portion of eastern Kansas and western Missouri. Some pharmacies outside the metro area also have joined. They estimated at least 22 locations had closed.

    While the group’s specific complaints focus on store staffing and quotas, the walkout reflects a rising outcry from pharmacists at several national pharmacy chains. They say their work requirements leave them unable to safely fill and verify prescriptions, putting patients at risk of serious harm or even death.

  22. Mikel

    Workers Bark Back on “The Green Dream or Whatever” The Liberal Patriot

    “…This Green New Deal proposal was radicals at Sunrise could have wished for and more. The proposal affirmed that the United States must become net zero on carbon emissions by 2030 through a dramatic and far-reaching transformation of every aspect of the economy. And far from entailing sacrifice, this economic transformation would provide full employment in high-wage jobs, accompanied by universal high-quality health care and housing. It would end all oppression of indigenous people, “communities of color,” migrant communities, and other “frontline and vulnerable communities…”

    Grifters gotta grift.
    The “universal healthcare” is a real laugher. These f’ers shriveled up over the pissant proposal of a public option.

    Heard similar things about the benefits of NAFTA to workers in the USA, the “freedom” that will come form the internet, the “vax” that prevents infection, “don’t call it a bailout”, infaltion is transitory, housing prices always go up…

    Anyway now the world is going to mine its way to a “green” future and keep engaging in all of these so “green” wars and military conflicts.

    Just follow the money and see what the BS is really about.

        1. flora

          Thanks. Great pictures. For a second it looked like it was Robotaxis’ spawning grounds, salmoning their way upstream to reproduce. Good thing there weren’t any Baylor Bears around. / ;)

  23. Jason Boxman

    At this point, the precautionary principle demands that if public health institutions claim a virus or other infectious agent spreads via droplets, they’re lying. Always assume airborne until proven otherwise, and definitely assume that the CDC and WHO are lying in support of capitalism at the expense of human health.

      1. some guy

        And sometimes easy to satirize at opportune moments, such as during Forest Wildfire Smoke Season when some clever satirists advised people to protect themselves against airborne smoke by washing their hands often.

  24. Jason Boxman

    From Opinion: Food banks are buying groceries at an astounding rate

    During the past year, each time I’ve walked through any of the four Food Bank of the Rockies distribution centers, I hear the same comment from staff: “Our shelves are never this empty, and it’s been challenging to keep them stocked especially with our most highly requested items.”

    I’ve been wondering about this; It’s been about 9-12 months since there’s been any serious coverage of breadlines in this country, and yet it isn’t like they’ve gone away. It just doesn’t track with the Bidenomics narrative that everything is going just great!, great I tell you!

    And this is part of the largest increase in poverty in recent history, brought to you by Biden and liberal Democrats!

    Feeding America, the national network of 200 food banks and 60,000 food pantries, recently reported that in 2022, approximately 49 million people in the U.S. – 1 in 6 – received charitable food assistance. Since March, when Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program emergency allotments ended, Food Bank of the Rockies has seen a 40%-60% increase in individuals seeking food assistance at our mobile pantries and has been distributing enough food for more than 181,500 meals daily. This spike is greater than we saw during COVID-19.

    (bold mine)

    Shutdown might make it worse:

    Food banks are scrambling to make ends meet in case the government temporarily shuts down.

    The Federation of Virginia Food Banks says it is spending 300% more money every month on food than before the coronavirus pandemic. This is due to high food costs and the decline in donations.

    Executive Director Eddie Oliver says the shutdown could leave many without food.

    “We are facing a bit of a crisis at the moment in terms of our food supply. Food donations are way down. Government commodities typically make up to 30% of our inventory,” Oliver said Wednesday, September 20.

    He says they’re also concerned about how a government shutdown will affect people with SNAP benefits.

  25. Gulag

    An extremely insightful article on Psycho-Politics by Eli Zaretsky. Maybe there still is some kind of hope for the Left if they are able to creatively examine their own materialist reductionism.

    Some examples:

    “Understanding that modern capitalist society is based not simply on the rise of industry, but also on the withdrawal of production from the family.”

    “In general, psychoanalysis did not directly confront institutions, but rather worked indirectly through its effects on individuals.”

    ” A new journal Parapraxis, describes itself as a psychoanalytically oriented supplement to radical critique and historical materialism; promising to uncover the psychosocial dimension of our lives.”

    “…the ideas or stimuli that came to the individual from society or culture were not directly registered but were dissolved and internally reconstituted in such a way as to give them personal, even idiosyncratic meanings.”

    “…psychoanalysis was not oriented to an identifiable sociological group such as the working class, but rather to new historically specific possibilities for personal emancipation, which capitalism promised but could not deliver.”

    “The sixties efforts to produce a non-reductive understanding of the relations of the social and the psychical were short-circuited.”

    “What happens in the absence of a theory of the unconscious is projection. All evil and wrong is seen as coming from the outside….When individuals lack even the concept of an intrapsychic life, much less access to it, they will project their aggression and other bad feeling outward.”

  26. maipenrai

    “Among patients who suffered a recent myocardial infarction, low-dose colchicine was effective at preventing major adverse cardiovascular events compared with placebo. Benefit was primarily due to a reduction in the incidence of stroke and urgent hospitalization for unstable angina leading to revascularization. Colchicine appeared to be beneficial among patients with diabetes. The study drug was well tolerated and associated with a similar incidence of infection and diarrhea compared with placebo. Colchicine was also cost-effective. The benefit of colchicine was purported to be due to anti-inflammatory properties of the drug.”

  27. upstater

    Exclusive: Germany scraps plans for more stringent building standards to prop up industry

    BERLIN, Sept 25 (Reuters) – The German government will put on indefinite hold plans to require more stringent building insulation standards, environment minister Robert Habeck told Reuters, an effort to help prop up the ailing building industry.

    The about-face from the German government comes ahead of a closely watched meeting between the building industry and government leaders with Chancellor Olaf Scholz on Monday to address a major slump in the sector.

    Putting up buildings that will last 100, 200 years or more… with the last century’s insulation and energy standards and practices. Gotta prop up the developers’ next quarter bottom line, don’t we? Just think of the pop in share prices of construction and REITS on the DAX.

    Germany, home of the Passiv Haus. What a joke, no? So much for the pro-coal, pro-war German Green party.

  28. The Rev Kev

    Stop me if you have heard this one before. So a member of Zelensky’s security goes into a bar near the UN building, gets drunk, starts demanding that Americans shout ‘Slava Ukraini’, fights a bar keeper trying to smooth things over, gets into a bigger fight where he has his a** kicked, and then the police move in to arrest everyone- (1:03 mins)

  29. Darthbobber

    Psychoanalysis article.
    1) Seems to confuse books about, or influenced by, psychoanalysis with psychoanalysis itself. (Firestone’s book, to take one example, leaving aside what one might think of its influence on feminism, affected the practice of psychoanalysis very little if at all. They also somehow elide Lacan, who was probably the lead figure the last time radicalism marched into a psychoanalysis related intellectual box canyon. Also seem to leave out Deleuze and Guattari. Can’t blame them.

    2) This seems flat wrong: “One reason is that psychoanalysis was not oriented to an identifiable sociological group, such as the working class, but rather to new, historically specific possibilities for personal emancipation, which capitalism promised but could not deliver.” Again, we seem to confuse talking ABOUT psychoanalysis with the profession itself, which in practice, and as a profession, oriented itself towards those who could pay for the individual treatment. And usually the amounts involved were not small. Which tended to make the actual customers what is conventionally labeled upper-middle class at a minimum. And also led to shop talk in jokes like “the transference is successfully completed when the patient runs out of money.”

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