Links 11/17/2023

‘It was a way to share your musical experiences’: why cassette tapes flourished, and still endure Guardian (Kevin W)

Purposeful universe aeon

World’s Leading Theory on Alzheimer’s in Crisis After Major Drug Trials Fail ScienceAlert (Chuck L)



Oil Majors’ Carbon Capture Plans Dubbed a ‘Dangerous Delusion’ Bloomberg (David L)

EU to prolong authorization for controversial herbicide RT (Kevin W)

New York sues PepsiCo over plastic pollution Financial Times (David L)


China Will Crack Down on Fentanyl Sent to the US. Worse Drugs Could Fill the Vacuum. Vice

The Xi-Biden Summit Might Help Better Manage The Sino-US Rivalry Andrew Korybko

Alibaba Cancels Cloud Spinoff, Blames US Chip Sanctions The Register

After Solid Fuel ICBM Successes North Korea Testing Similar Engine For ‘Guam Killer’ Tactical Missiles Military Watch

European Disunion

Terminal decline Energy Flux (Micael T)

Germany gets a new antiwar party, this time on the left Responsible Statecraft

Warfighting Capability” as Guiding Principle for Action German Foreign Policy. Micael T: “War with Russia? They have learnt nothing from the Ukraine-war or WWII.”

The three German fears Branko Milanovic (Micael T)


‘Operation Al-Aqsa Flood’ Day 41: Israel ignores legally binding UNSC resolution, saying ‘it will not happen.’ and Rainfall on a destroyed Gaza could spell disaster Mondoweiss

UN Security Council adopts resolution for ‘humanitarian pauses’ in Gaza Politico

Gazans facing “immediate possibility of starvation” as food production collapses, UN organization says CNN (ma)

UNRWA chief says Gaza operations being deliberately strangled Middle East Online

Without fuel, internet and phone service has fully collapsed in Gaza Associated Press

Iran told US it did not want Israel-Hamas war to escalate Financial Times. Lead story.

Israel is winning and will prevail in Gaza war Asia Times. Kevin W: “Related article “Hamas is murdering Palestinian babies in Gaza hospitals” by Alan Dershowitz at”

* *

Hamas says it’s prepared for long war with Israel Anadolu Agency. As Alexander Mercouris pointed out, citing Henry Kissinger, insurgencies don’t need to win to win. All they need to do is survive.

A Planned US-Israeli Attack on Iran Is Contemplated Michel Chossudovsky (Micael T)

* *

IDF releases footage of weapons it says were found in Gaza’s Al-Shifa Hospital Arab News. Remember from yesterday’s links, IDF footage of IDF soldiers carrying obviously fake boxes of medical supplies into the hospital.

US, Israeli lies about “command center” at Al-Shifa hospital fall apart WSWS

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Don’t let them turn Palestine into a free speech debate Carl Beijer (Micael T)

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Crisis Update: Bin Laden Cameo Role In Gaza Mind War Moneycircus (Micael T)

New Not-So-Cold War

It’s Time to End Magical Thinking About Russia’s Defeat The Wall Street Journal (David L)

Treasury Department’s hunt for Russian oil sanction violators on the seas is intensifying CNBC (Kevin W)

UK’s newly appointed top diplomat makes surprise visit to Ukraine Al Jazeera (Kevin W)

The Conditions For Peace In Ukraine Ian Welsh (Micael T)

Separation of Church and State Is Fake—Happy Thanksgiving! American Conservative

Big Brother is Watching You Watch

How Conservatives Spent Millions in Public Money Building their Party’s Voter Database. Odds Are, You’re In It. Douglad Lamont (Micael T)

Prison Phone Company Leaked 600,000 Users’ Data and Didn’t Notify Them ars technica

Imperial Collapse Watch

Are we in a countdown to all-out nuclear war? Gilbert Doctorow (Chuck L)

Pentagon fails sixth audit, with number of passing grades stagnant Defense News


Biden, 80, trails his three main GOP rivals in the polls, with Nikki Haley leading the way ahead of the Democratic president by 10 points Daily Mail

GOP Clown Car

Ethics report says Santos lied to Election Commission, embezzled funds Christian Science Monitor

US congressman George Santos announces he won’t seek re-election after damning Ethics Committee report ABC Australia (Kevin W)

GOP senators clash with Tuberville over military nominees late into night The Hill. A right-wing contact contends this row is not primarily Turberville objecting to abortion policies (although that sells with his voters) but the woke recruitment/promotion bias and generally top-heavy armed services.

Our No Longer Free Press

Reporter Arrested at East Palestine Train Derailment Press Conference Sues Police Scheerpost


Roger Waters barred from South American hotels over Israeli pressure – media RT (Kevin W)

Should Joe Biden Be Banned? Jonathan Turley

Instantaneous Inflation in October Menzie Chinn


DeepMind AI accurately forecasts weather — on a desktop computer Nature

Why Mainstream Economics Got Inflation Wrong Project Syndicate (David L). Because mainstream economics is never right?

The Bezzle

Insiders Say Eat Just Is in Big Financial Trouble Wired (BC)

Users Can’t Speak To Viral AI Girlfriend CarynAI Because CEO Is in Jail 404Media

IBM pulls adverts from X after report finding they ran next to Nazi content Financial Times (David L)

Class Warfare

NY Promised Pot Store Loans Would Build Wealth and Create Equity. Instead, They’re Loading Businesses With Steep Costs. THE CITY

My Night in an $18 Hotel Room on the F1-Broken, Traffic-Choked Las Vegas Strip The Messenger (Dr. Kevin)

Antidote du jour. Tracie H: “This is one of our friendly neighborhood Mojave desert lizards in trona, California. I think I’d caption it “Bedroom Eyes”. 😊”

And a bonus (Chuck L). White moose are super rare!

A second bonus from Chuck L:

See yesterday’s Links and Antidote du Jour here.

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  1. Antifa

    (melody borrowed from Country Roads by John Denver)

    North of Richmond — Langley, Virginia
    Fairfax County, slow Potomac River
    There’s a Farm there teaching expertise
    In torture, fraud, and murder all for world peace

    Good guys have to be strong
    Not confused by right and wrong
    Black ops run for the Pentagon
    Killing for the Hegemon

    Plans cooked up by State Department plotters
    Coups and kidnaps, orders to do slaughters
    The Oval Office only wants results
    Innocent as toddlers asking the adults

    Good guys have to be strong
    Not confused by right and wrong
    Black ops run for the Pentagon
    Killing for the Hegemon

    Joining this crew is a choice that lasts forever
    They always say nobody ever leaves the CIA
    After I retire I’ll sit and ponder
    All the things that I did yesterday, yesterday . . .

    Good guys have to be strong
    Not confused by right and wrong
    Black ops run for the Pentagon
    Killing for the Hegemon

    Good guys have to be strong
    Not confused by right and wrong
    Black ops run for the Pentagon
    Killing for the Hegemon

    Killing for the Hegemon

    Killing for the Hegemon

  2. The Rev Kev

    “My Night in an $18 Hotel Room on the F1-Broken, Traffic-Choked Las Vegas Strip”

    Looking at the bright side, it may work out that more than a few homeless people that still have access to some money will be able to get a room every other night where they can sleep in a warm bed, have a hot shower or bath and feel and be safe as well. That would be a win for a few people. This reminds me of the first year of the Pandemic here in Oz which brought to a grinding halt the deluge of tourists that arrived during the course of the year. Tourist backpackers that were here suddenly found top-grade tourist hotels dropping their prices to rock-bottom prices where even they were able to put themselves up in a good hotel. It’s capitalism, baby.

    1. griffen

      Reads like the Tourism geniuses in Clark County put Emperor Commodus in charge of logistics and planning for Race Week….wait or is it really Race Month (Quarter)…\ sarc? It is as though Las Vegas is not a sufficiently crowded, traffic dense location as it was ! We need more spectacle.

      I get it though, Formula 1 has really begun taking off here in the States so maybe that’s good for growth and an increasing fanbase. And if F-1 is looking for more varied locations to host racing, I can think up a few former Nascar tracks that lay dormant or less used with plenty of parking and a large grandstand. I frequently pass one of those in Rockingham, NC, which despite what I suggest is still in use just not as much these days for the strictly left turn only racing.

      1. The Rev Kev

        A coupla months ago I came across a YouTube channel called ‘Jacob’s Life in Vegas’ in which he talks about what Vegas is like with its scams, illusion, etc. Here is a recent video of his where he talks about these races called “Why Formula 1 Is The Biggest Mistake Vegas Ever Made”- (14:53 mins)

        Good stuff in it.

        1. Benny Profane

          Yeah, good reporting. But, bottom line, street racing sucks. Its ugly live, and its ugly on tv. Drivers hate it.

          Vegas is such a hell hole. I visited it a few years ago on a southern Utah national park tour, because cheap, direct flights from the east coast. What a freak show. Literally. And this event is like tripling down on all the freakiness. I’ll still fly in and out, but, get my car and just drive away from there ASAP.

          1. TimH

            The Venetian is giving away a combined $250,000 to hourly employees working race week, with one employee winning a new Tesla Model 3 or $25,000 in cash.

            At least we now know what’s the real value of a TM3.

          2. Lex

            I’m not an F1 fan but I did see they had to cancel practices because a car sucked up a manhole cover. Which, damn is that some physics! But also now they have to weld all the manholes shut? A bumpy road course is not conducive to modern F1 cars.

        2. Wukchumni

          I love the area outside of Pavlovegas-Colorado River, Valley of Fire state Park, Red Rocks et al, but that dog won’t hunt for me as far as the strip goes, there is nothing there for me.

          You almost wonder why LV took on Formula 1, methinks it was on account of every Tom, Dick & Harry Native American casino muscling in on their action, gotta do something Big!

          1. juno mas

            Agree with you on the Valley of Fire, it’s real. The Strip, however, is pure fantasy. Though it does provide more than a third of State government budget (VoF is a State park) through Gaming and property tax. The Show must go on!

          2. Benny Profane

            Death Valley, Grand Canyon, Zion close. Red Rocks is cool. But, I felt seriously threatened just walking the Strip, avoiding certain groups. I’m a former NYC cab driver, and the old radar started activating over and over. I’ll bet half the people are on parole.

            Vegas just brings out the worst in humanity

    2. Wukchumni

      Hunter S, Thompson’s masterpiece was in regards to the Mint 400 off-road motorcycle race, and the fear & loathing in regards to everything the F-1 race is certainly pulp for the mill, but in lieu of a trip on drugs, its a power trip, bay-bee.

  3. furnace

    By now I can barely contain my anger as to the genocide currently unfolding. I wish misery upon these ghouls, and that vengeance will be swift.

    On another note, Elijah Magnier has a new article unpaywalled on why Hezbollah did not declare total war on Israel. It’s a very good read. Some bits:

    According to sources within the Hamas leadership, the organisation initially demanded Hezbollah’s participation in the conflict from the outset. However, Hamas later became convinced that opening a northern front with Hezbollah would not effectively deter Israel from concentrating on the southern front in Gaza. As a result, Hamas reportedly asked Hezbollah’s Sayyed Nasrallah to articulate the reasons for Hamas’s actions publicly. Nasrallah’s subsequent speech, delivered in his unique style, attracted considerable media attention and provided a platform for Hamas’ perspectives and motivations that it might not have achieved alone.

    1. Jabura Basaidai

      oh yes! – misery and vengeance upon these ghouls – most surely agree, but the rage is fueled by the feeling that there will probably be no true retribution for the war crimes by any of these gangsters besides being thrown verbally under the virtue signal bus by each other while nothing ceases the slaughter – the slaughter and the lies that justify or obfuscate it can be overwhelming –

      1. undercurrent

        Maybe an Angel of the Lord will convince Pope Francis to excommunicate the unrepentant sinner, Joseph Biden. After what’s been done in Gaza, especially as to the grievous sins done to its infants and children, their deaths resulting from Biden’s loathsome aid to israel, we can all agree with Jesus when he says that it would be better for JB if he’d never been born; and would have been so much better, in truth, for all of us.

        1. Jabura Basaidai

          i’ll sign a petition for that to be presented to the Pope – i’m a recovering Catholic after parochial schools from grades 1 – 12 – time for Francis to walk the walk – talk is cheap –

    2. Daryl

      It is normal to have extreme emotions witnessing one of the gravest crimes in all of history unfolding before our eyes. I only wonder how the news media/pol people justify this vile depravity to themselves.

  4. Colonel Smithers

    Thank you, Yves.

    Further to the Caitlin Johnstone link, it has been interesting and encouraging to observe retired French diplomats Dominique Galouzeau de Villepin, Yves Aubin de la Messuziere and Gerard Araud swat away with ease, insight and gallic panache ritual smears of anti-semitism on the airwaves, in print (for Messuziere writing in la Croix) and in front of French parliamentarians (Araud, facing questions from Macron’s Likudnik Meyer Habib). None feels that they even have to indulge the legally inaccurate nonsense that Israel has a right to defend itself, which, according to the UN, Israel or any other state does not have in occupied territory. They were such welcome differences in comparison with the forever useless and scared of its shadow British left.

    The above said, French tv has also featured some crude and casual racism, no longer bothering with euphemisms. This war has allowed the mask of progress and all that nonsense that much of the French population kids itself about to fall entirely. One commentator pointed out that in monarchist Britain, the interior minister was fired for incitement, but in republican France, the interior minister, a dodgy character with foreign and non Christian grandfathers, is allowed and even encouraged to incite racism.

    The sinking ship, further to the other links and according to my German current and former colleagues in banking, the SPD, FDP and European Commission, that is Germany is little better.

    1. The Rev Kev

      Thank you, Colonel. I have heard it said that the main reason why Alfred Dreyfus of the ‘Dreyfus Affair’ was hated so much was not so much that he was Jewish but that in fighting back against these false charges, that it forced French institutions to get undressed in public and in front of the world in fact. I think that we are seeing something similar in that the war in Gaza is forcing all these neocons, extremists, ultra-Orthodox and general ratbags come out in public and try to defend an actual genocide while pretending that it is no such thing at all, in-spite of daily videos showing that it is. They tell us to ignore what we see and to believe them instead. So we are seeing who does so and in America alone we see people like Biden, RFK jr, AOC and even Tulsi Gabbard trying to defend it. For Israel’s onslaught in Gaza they have striped themselves naked and we now see who they really are and it is not a pretty sight.

      1. JohnA

        Both media personalities and politicians in Britain are tying themselves in knots trying to justify accusing Russia of genocide and terrorism, yet the Israeli actions are neither, and morally justified at the same time.

        A group of schoolkids in east London went on strike earlier this week. Months ago they had been encouraged by their school to raise money for the Ukrainian cause and come to school dressed in blue and yellow. They wanted to do something similar for Gaza, but the school authorities said absolutely not. So they walked out. The hypocricy is off the scale here.

      2. Tom Stone

        My local congresscritter Mike Thompson replied to my email regarding Nakba 2023 with a pledge of undying fealty to Israel and full throated support of Apartheid and ethnic cleansing.
        No surprise there, especially after reading Whitney Webb’s book “One Nation under Blackmail” which I consider to be essential reading for anyone interested in US Policy toward Israel and the Middle East.
        Mr Thompson’s position is understandable, he wants to keep his job and any congresscritter that gets sideways with AIPAC will be faced with a VERY well funded primary opponent after being smeared as an antisemite for the remainder of their term.

        1. JCC

          I own property in both Central NY and Kern County, CA, so I take advantage of both addresses when using their sites to write all of them. And I have gotten the same responses from Congresscritters in NY State and California.

          They are all terrified of getting on the wrong side of AIPAC, even if it takes their supporting obvious, blatant, genocide.

          It just goes to show the level of fear, and greed, most Congresscritters suffer with.

          P.S. I live next door to Trona, CA and I’m very familiar with Tracy H.’s Mohave Desert lizards. Wonderful little creatures that do a good job keeping the scorpion population low.

      3. Kouros

        But, but, but, I thought that Hamas is killing all those innocent civilians (the idea that there is no inocent has not been continued) that are used as human shields, because one cannot expect anything better from barbarous Hamas rap, beheading of babies).

        The CBC interviewer of an advisor to Israel’s PM tried to push the envelope a bit, but this is what we hear coming from Israel.

    2. Carolinian

      This war has allowed the mask of progress and all that nonsense that much of the French population kids itself about to fall entirely.

      Thanks! Obviously I’m no expert on France but do watch a lot of French movies and have been there a couple of times and I would say that French vanity about their supposed intellectualism is greatly overdone. Even Godard was partly making fun of it. And when he stopped doing so he became boring.

      An article I saw recently said the French left a million dead behind in Algeria. Even if that’s an exaggeration the French enthusiasm for colonialism matched the British. To be sure black Americans found refuge there from Jim Crow but if you watch one of those old Josephine Baker movies the subtle racism is unmistakable. Chauvinism is a French word after all.

      1. Eclair

        ” …. the French enthusiasm for colonialism matched the British.”

        Well, maybe the French (and the Belgians) were as enthusiastic as the British, but they definitely were not as successful! The Brits did North America (kicking out the French, Russians and Spanish), and were triumphant in India and most of Africa (although they had to fight off the Boers, and the sneaky French got the prime chocolate-producing territory.) And, they really really tried to drug their way to success in China, but only got some land and concessions on the fringes. World War I saw them doing a major land grab in the newly-named ‘Middle East.’ (And we can see how that is turning out!) And, I have not even mentioned Ireland and Scotland and Wales, where they perfected their colonial settler tactics (wipe out the language and culture, co-opt a few corrupt locals, repress the indigenous peasants, and if they resist, ‘relocate’ them (they ones they have not killed outright.)

      2. Aurelien

        Algeria was part of France then (and had been since 1839, ie before many states were part of the US.) Those who wanted to keep it so (and they came from various parts of the political spectrum) made a comparison with the German invasion of 1940, and the subsequent division of France into two. It was said at the time that “the Mediterranean runs through France as the Seine runs through Paris,” and that the thought of another national humiliation so soon after 1940 was too much to bear. There was also the question. of the million or so Algerians of European extraction, who very much did not want to be part of an independent Algeria, and resisted violently, as well as the substantial part of the indigenous population which, if not opposed to independence, was not keen on a country led by the FLN.

        Deaths were probably in the hundreds of thousands, including battle casualties, internecine fighting (the FLN was good at wiping out its domestic opponents), casualties inflicted by and on the European population, massacres of “collaborators” after the war by the FLN, and even terrorist attacks in France by the right-wing OAS, as well as the main struggle between the FLN and the French. It was a horrible, horrible, shambles, from which nobody emerges with much credit. But it was special: Algeria, in the French view was not colony, and the French did not seriously try to retain any of their other major colonies.

        What the good Colonel is getting at, I think, is the fundamental tension of the last generation or so in French politics, where on the one hand the Jewish lobby is politically extremely powerful, and on the other hand anti-racism has been adopted as a secular faith by the Left, but also by the French establishment as a whole. The latter has prevented any sensible discussion of the problems raised by immigration, or even mentioning the subject. Gaza has made it impossible for these two positions to coexist, and we are seeing the underlying stresses emerge now. The natural consequence is to expatriate the problem, something I have written about here.

          1. vao

            Yes, France fought bitterly to keep Indochina till the very end, engaging in significant battles (and suffering further defeats) several weeks after Dien Bien Phu.


            Algeria, in the French view was not colony

            is extremely debatable. From 1881 to 1946, France imposed the infamous “code de l’indigénat” in Algeria — a legal system developed for the subjects of its colonies. Algerians were legally “French native subjects” — they were not citizens, except the Jews, but not the Jews from the Algerian hinterland. In practice, Algeria was very much treated as a settlement colony. Algerians only became full-fledged French citizens in 1958 — by then it was too late.

            1. Aurelien

              Vietnam was a colony and never anything else. The humiliation of losing Indo-China was in fact a major factor in stiffening resolve over Algeria. Whatever you may think of the arguments, Algeria as a territory was legally part of France and no French person a hundred years ago would have dreamed of suggesting otherwise.

              1. vao

                Official legal status apart, the fact is that a colonial legal regime was applied in Algeria.

                For that matter, Portugal viewed itself as a “pluricontinental, multiracial nation”, so that its colonies were not colonies, but “overseas provinces” — in which a colonial legal regime was nevertheless in force.

                After all, if it looks like a duck, walks like a duck, quacks like a duck, and swims like a duck, then…

    3. Feral Finster

      “All tyrannies rule through fraud and force, but once the fraud is exposed they must rely exclusively on force.”
      ― George Orwell

    4. Ignacio

      Thank you Colonel. Did you read the linked “The three German fears” Branko Milanovic? More interesting than the article itself was the comment made there by Pavlov Roufos.who argues about the inconsistency of past German history analysis to explain current fears. The picture i got from it is that too many things get confused in Germany these days and the Nazi past is only used as an excuse to support Israel crimes or hyperinflation fear as an excuse for more austerity and inequality today when austerity, precisely, what gave a rise to the Nazis. With such degree of confusion one cannot expect anything politically good coming from Germany. It will be worse reaction after bad reaction as we are actually seeing these days, with stupor in my case.

      1. Ignacio

        In Spanish we say “vamos de Guatemala a Guatepeor” (From Guate-bad to Guate-worse). Pessimism is justified in Germany and elsewhere in the EU.

      2. vao

        hyperinflation fear as an excuse for more austerity

        Germans are not worried about Weimar-like hyperinflation, nor do they use it as an argument for their policies. The supposedly visceral German fear of hyperinflation is actually a legend in force outside Germany. If Germans were so obsessed by hyperinflation, then Austrians, Poles, and even more Hungarians (look up their hyperinflationary periods after WWI and particularly after WWII) should be as well — but one never hears about them.

        What Germans are worried about is not to be in control of their monetary policy. This would require a longer explanation, but basically the reforms of 1948 (Reichsmark to Deutsche Mark) and 1990 (monetary union of GDR and FRG) were such painful experiences (including inflation in 1991-1992, and wild swings of inflation and deflation till 1953) that they made Germany extremely risk-adverse when it comes to currency and monetary policy, determining how it wanted the Euro and ECB to be set up.

    5. Wæsfjord

      I’m in France at the moment. Disgusting to see so many media running with the anti-semitism smear against protesters but heartening to see the posters and grafitti in support of Gaza. From the river to the sea!

    6. John k

      France has been the most independent of the major eu powers, witness no us bases since de Gaulle kicked them out (including the one housing my high school) vs Germany, GB and Italy. Gtanted, macron is a banker placed there to protect banking interests, so it is what it is.

      1. vao

        France has been the most independent of the major eu powers

        That was in the past. This attitude ended when Chirac retired as president.

    1. Mark Gisleson

      Wow, they just had to make home growing as shameful as possible:

      The new law, which goes into effect Dec. 7, will allow adults over 21 to buy and use marijuana products without a medical card. It will also be legal to cultivate up to six plants per adult (or a maximum of 12 per household) in a locked, enclosed area that’s not accessible to children or visible to the public.

      No, you’re not growing medicine, you’re growing shame and bringing dishonor down upon yourself. God forbid a child should witness your iniquity.

      1. samm

        Well, I got to say at least Ohioans get to grow their own! Here in Washington state it is strictly verboten. Cannabis can only be grown for commercial purposes, no exceptions, not even for the ‘medical’ variety (which used to be legal). No telling what they’ll nix next, but certainly they’ll make sure to show us proles that if we want to survive, we must rely on markets!

        1. Jabura Basaidai

          oh really!?! verboten when used to be illegal??? – hmmmmm…can’t have infringement on the “free market” – what happened to all those day-glow freaks preaching peace and love?
          reminds me of Kid Charlemagne – because markets
          This life can be very strange
          All those Day-Glo freaks who used to paint the face
          They’ve joined the human race
          Some things will never change

          Son, you were mistaken
          You are obsolete
          Look at all the white men on the street

          1. ian

            I live in Vermont. Maybe I aged out of it, but I stopped smoking weed when it became legal here. Took all the fun out it. Smoking weed was very eye-opening in my twenties because it got me thinking “If the government is lying about this [the “dangers” of marijuana], what else are they lying about?”

            1. Jabura Basaidai

              it is a bit stronger now – i have definitely aged out of the constant use a while back – not an edible fan at all – had a bag of a couple of ounces of weed a friend that grows gave to me in 2019 – still have some – it does alleviate aches & pains and doesn’t take much – never was a drinker, except cognac on rare occasions – me and alcohol don’t mix well –

      2. Lex

        You should see how most legal states make the cultivators for the store bought weed behave. You’d think it was plutonium. Thankfully the ability to control the home grower becomes almost fruitless once these laws are adopted. In Michigan the court of appeals recently ruled that exceeding the personal plant limit can’t be more than a misdemeanor.

    2. Screwball

      Ohio here. I was glad to see this passed, but not sure how it ends up. I expect once things move forward we see many counties and/or townships vote for a ban in said places. IOW, dry counties and townships.

      About the growing at home; the locked, enclosed area that’s not accessible to children or visible to the public. Define visible please. Also, I can’t find it now, but the language also said you have to grow it on your OWN land. So if I planted some seeds on my buddies farm out in the middle of nowhere where nobody could see them, it would be illegal. On the same note; if I plant some seeds in the clearing in a woods on my buddies farm, do they still have to be in a locked enclosed area? More questions than answers, and it all might come down to the local “pot” cops, whoever that turns out to be.

      One thing I am pretty sure about; in NW Ohio, a trip (no pun intended) to Michigan is a common thing since MI is already recreational, and the half dozen or so pot shops around the Monroe area (exit 11 from Ohio) who are constantly filled with Ohio plates now have a bleak future, depending on how long it takes for Ohio to get the trains running on time.

      As said in one of articles in that link, the governor of Ohio cannot veto this because of the way it was passed. DeWine had said he would veto any pot bill long ago. Another reason I expect battles around the state. Ohio is still pretty red. Our county passed it by one vote, which surprised me. Many rural counties were the same way. Both Issue 1 and 2 were passed due to the large cites/counties

  5. The Rev Kev

    “IDF releases footage of weapons it says were found in Gaza’s Al-Shifa Hospital”

    The Israelis have really messed up here. There were all these grandiose claims of massive Hamas bunkers under that hospital holding lots of Israeli captives with Hamas defending that hospital like it was Fort Knox. They have raided that hospital twice now and have come up with virtually zip. Sure, they point out enough equipment to arm what, a platoon at most? But most people are thinking that the Israelis simply brought in captured Hamas gear from other fights and planted it there. In short, nobody is believing them anymore. But some people are still defending the Israeli story. Here is a video with David Friedman, former US ambassador to Israel, saying that if you denied that it was a Hamas HQ base, that you were basically guilty of Holocaust Denial- (1:35 mins) – Must watch video

    1. mrsyk

      Heh heh, Friedman reveals himself as a propagandist when he embarks on the “When were you last in Gaza” gambit. When that spectacularly backfires he moves on to the “holocaust denier” strategy. What a tool.

      1. mrsyk

        Tone policing and bullying with teeth, backed by social media bots, no-boycott laws, frothing politicians and their talking head lackeys, university administrators, etc, etc.

    2. It's About Colonialism

      I’m extremely curious what the inside story was with the whole al-Shifa ploy. Maybe one day we’ll get something like memoirs or other testimony from Israeli soldiers involved.

      From the outside looking in, I’m wondering if Israel genuinely convinced itself there was something to find. So they raided, found nothing (I’m guessing the first thing they did was head straight to the basement and the old bunker they themselves built there in the 80s. Likely all they found was the hospital using it as a storage room for actual medical supplies. Or maybe even more mundane things like brooms and mops), and came back for a second raid with heavy equipment and started digging to find the Hamas tunnels they ‘know’ must be there.

      Aside from that, they’ve also bungled every other part of the optics. They were claiming they were bringing incubators (as if the problem wasn’t lack of fuel instead of lack of equipment), but that seems to have been a lie. Instead of helping to keep the hospital running ‘free of Hamas influence’, they’ve caused most of the people in the ICU to die and shattered whatever functionality the hospital had left.

      Yes the clear goal at this point is to force it to close as part of the strategy of ethnic cleansing, but there also seems to be an incoherence and dysfunction on some fundamental level within the Israeli military and political class. Not everyone seems to be on the same page.

    3. vao

      The various Israeli propaganda actions I have seen/heard (videos, discourses, posters, etc) are oddly weird, rabidly vindictive, caricaturally clumsy, and sometimes outright cartoonish.

      I wonder whether the fact that Israelis devoted all their skills and efforts to lobbying, i.e. canvassing and convincing individual politicians, renders them inept at understanding and communicating with the public at large.

      1. rowlf

        Pat Lang years ago mentioned when Netanyahu brought his Acme Products bomb graphic to the UN that the Israelis have a history of insulting their audiences with childish graphics. Hubris?

  6. TBone

    Carmen can blow it out of her ass. I hear, instead of “Holy, Holy, Holy,” “TAX THE CHURCHES” if they want to conduct political business in the name of an imaginary sky hallucination they pretend makes them righteous. What a load of sanctimonious claptrap. It’s always the loudest braggarts who are the least representative of Christ.

    1. pjay

      Yes. Whenever I’ve read several decent American Conservative articles and start to think “hey, here are people with which I can at least have a discussion,” they publish one like this and wake me up. A real Orwellian interpretation of the separation of Church and State. Given what’s going on in Israel right now, I can’t think of anything we need *less* that to assert ourselves as a “Christian Nation.”

      1. Feral Finster

        To be fair, The American Conservative seems to publish a lot of different viewpoints.

        An all-time favorite was some turkey about how “America Must Reclaim Its Spartan Heritage” or some other crackpottery. I asked the author whether that “Spartan heritage” included exposure of unwanted infants, or just helotry and military homosexuality.

        At least TAC had an interesting comment section, one that allowed even scathing criticism of the authors.

        1. Jabura Basaidai

          ff – i don’t subscribe to TAC but “had” an interesting comment section, as in no longer allowed? – personally think it’s worth it to at least scan what is usually worthless because a broken clock is always correct 2X a day – a strong point of NC is throwing the raw meat of Links out here and letting us gnaw on it –

          1. Donald

            It had an interesting comment section years ago. Very ideologically diverse when I first visited. I was banned without notice at one point, and I am pretty sure it was because I was too critical of Dreher. He would allow white nationalists to post and some lefties, but was always ready to ban them.

            They fired Larison and that’s when it really started going downhill.

            1. Feral Finster

              Dreher was funny that way. Sometimes he would allow himself to be abused mercilessly, and sometimes he would ban at the drop of a hat.

              In general, he really seems touchy about some things.

          2. Feral Finster

            Had, as in “past tense”. Now I think you have to subscribe to comment.

            I sometimes found TAC worthwhile, and as I said, the comments section was a good, free-rollicking discussion.

      2. Kouros

        TAC went through the trouble of overhauling their entire staff and at the same time stopped allowing comments for unpaying, unregistered folks. Since then it went all downhill.

      1. TBone

        I was going to correct my typo to ‘Carmel’ but thought haha that’s a great freudian slip. t, I hope your camping trip is filled with peace and wonder, and with the true meaning of the holiday – whatever that holds for you!

    2. Katniss Everdeen

      From the bowels of the article:

      Only a Christian nation could have made its first self-conscious act a feast day of thanksgiving to the God of their fathers. Only a still-Christian people, well over a century later, would have made that first feast day a state holiday. The act of thanksgiving is a distinctly Christian behavior, and the American people, despite great effort, have yet to complete their flight from this heritage.

      Given the current, hysterical, anti-this-or-that american zeitgeist, it’s unbelievable that this rabidly pro-christian rhetoric is even permitted to be whispered in any relatively mainstream publication, let alone one for “conservatives,” who pride themselves on sniffing out the tiniest, some might even say invented from whole cloth, “evidence” of anti-semitic “hate.”

      Imagine characterizing the “act” of “giving thanks” as a “distinctly christian” impulse. Doesn’t someone have the adl on speed dial???

      What’s next? A bipartisan “law” that prohibits consumption of turkey and sweet potatoes by any non-christian or non-christian “adjacent” u.s. resident on the 4th Thursday of November, and a requirement that they eat only pizza or chinese food instead on that sacred day?

      Glory to god in the highest, and peace on earth to men of good will.

      1. Jabura Basaidai

        i’m reading “1491” which goes into some detail about how the Wampanoag Confederacy saved the Pilgrims from starvation and negotiated a treaty with them and was the reason for the first Thanksgiving –

        the First Nations of the N. American continent have had every treaty broken and hardly celebrate a Thanksgiving for what has been done to their peoples and cultures – settler colonialism at its best – praise the imaginary sky hallucination that provided their disgusting justification – and btw; Thomas Paine, Benjamin Franklin, George Washington, John Adams, Thomas Jefferson and James Madison were unequivocal that the imaginary sky hallucination (god) had no place in the constitution – they have been quoted as such –

        The modern motto of the United States of America, as established in a 1956 law signed by President Dwight D. Eisenhower, is “In God we trust” – BUT – E pluribus unum (“Out of many, one”) was adopted by an Act of Congress in 1782 as the motto for the Seal of the United States and NOTHING about god in there – the idea of god is a useless artifact that has been used to avoid responsibility and give justification – and oh yeah, use as a boogeyman – the euro-trash interlopers that came to settle the western side of the Atlantic ocean and eventually the indigenous areas of the Pacific were men of such high moral integrity only in their own minds but not in their actions – a trail of destruction and misplaced manifest destiny –

  7. digi_owl

    For anyone interested in old audio formats, i recommend Techmoan on Youtube.

    Among other things he covers the introduction of the Compact Cassette, and the response it got from the RIAA (to say it was hyperbolic and negative is an understatement). This also affected the introduction of later formats like DAT and Minidisc.

    Another thing is that while Phillips came up with both the cassette and the CD, it was Sony that made them popular.

    1. dougie

      I love my hundreds of DAT tapes of live concerts I accumulated back in the 80’s and 90’s, and listen to them most every day!

    2. Benny Profane

      ” it was Sony that made them popular.”

      The Walkman. Cassette players weren’t available in cars until later.

      1. Randy

        Sorry. I just checked Wikipedia about the Walkman. It was supposedly launched in 1979.

        I had a cassette player in my car in 1972.

      2. Wukchumni

        They were draining manmade reservoir Shaver Lake in the Sierra around 2010 to do work on it, and we got to talking to some of the crew working on the project, and I asked them what the commonest item was that they came across on the bottom other than bottles or cans, and it was Sony Walkmans, they related.

    3. Michael

      I can’t sell my 2000 Jetta cuz it has my only available cassette player. Plus an excellent sound system.
      A stitch in time!

      1. Nikkikat

        Oh, but don’t you just love paying to listen to really crappy musical genres that play the worst they have to offer for 149.00 per year? Snark

      2. Mark Gisleson

        I’m active in some communities that have enormous nostalgia for cassettes. They do sound warmer, just like vinyl. I have downloaded some rips of old 8-tracks that triggered lots of memories for me. I was an 8-track kid because you couldn’t play records outdoors or in the car.

        It’s my understanding that the limited edition cassettes being sold now are mostly junk quality (and not all the vinyl is up to standards). Digital is extremely good. Maybe not the best, but certainly the most convenient. You can always use an equalizer to ‘warm’ the sound up and it is extremely environmentally friendly.

  8. pjay

    – ‘The three German fears’ – Branko Milanovic (Micael T)

    Is it just me, or is this a really bizarre article, especially coming from Milanovic? I’m not so much talking about the “three fears” he emphasizes – inflation, the rise of the political right, and anti-Semitism – but the fact that he barely mentions the huge elephant in the room that is behind them: complete enslavement to the US/NATO project in Europe. This is hardly mentioned! Rather, Milanovic provides the perfect ideological cover for this project by simply amplifying German (and others) nightmares about Nazis and Hitler!

    Branko says he “met people from different walks of life: academics, trade unionists and people close to the ruling SPD, researchers of inequality, several journalists who interviewed me, and even several politicians who gave talks at various occasions.” Do you mean to tell me that *none* of these people are capable of seeing what to an outside observer like me seems blindingly obvious – that Lord Ismay’s famous quote about “keeping the Russians out, the Americans in, and the Germans down” has never been more relevant?

    Surely *someone* besides right-wingers in Germany have to understand this. Don’t they? Is Sahra Wagenknecht truly this alone?

    1. The Rev Kev

      You notice that the people that Brank was talking too were either PMCs or else PMC-adjacent? He would have been better talking to taxi drivers or going for a beer at a local Kneipe and talking to people there. I would be pretty sure that people would be worried much more about the impoverishment and de-industrialisation of Germany under it present leadership. Sure, Germans are worried about inflation and giving up the Deutsche Mark for the Euro probably put them on edge about floating bonds – which the EU is planning on doing for the Ukraine when they weren’t supposed to be. One thing that I did notice in the many trips that I made to Germany was their obsession about ‘sicherheit’ – security. I saw that word used a lot. Yes, this was during the First Cold War but now that we are in a second one, I am sure that this thought is once more coming to the top.

    2. hemeantwell

      It’s not just you. He talks about a general political malaise without talking about Wagenknecht’s important step to address it, a step that’s already getting significant polling response. Milanovic just got sent off the rink to the benches to sit alongside Tooze.

      1. Kouros

        That is an apt observation. Albeit Tooze tried lately to get some sparkle lately by rubbing himself on Carla Mattei’s work/sparkle…

    3. Feral Finster

      Enslavement to the US/NATO project is hardly something that the German political class fears. Rather, this is a desired outcome, as nothing can give a Euroclass German greater delight than when he is allowed lovingly to fellate his American Master.

    4. Ignacio

      Go again and read the well worth reading commentary by Pavlov after Milanovic’s article. Does a god job explaining the confusions you signal.

      1. pjay

        Thanks. That was indeed a useful comment. It also made the crucial point that although these “fears” noted by Milanovic may exist, they are in an important sense myths that serve ideological ends. I would add to the list the German concern with security pointed out by Rev Kev. It’s not that fear of Russian expansionism isn’t common. Rather, it’s that (in my opinion) this fear is a myth, actually the inverse of reality, serving as propaganda for NATO’s own expansionist agenda in post-Soviet Europe.

  9. flora

    re:IDF releases footage of weapons it says were found in Gaza’s Al-Shifa Hospital Arab News.

    Because of course Hamas or anybody would store metal weapons in the MRI imaging room…. right….

    1. The Rev Kev

      Haven’t you heard? The IDF also said that they found a laptop! That’s gotta be good as a WMD, right?

      1. Jen

        It’s been a while since I’ve had anything to do with MRIs, but I seem to recall that hard drives don’t fare well in the presence of giant magnets.

        1. flora

          You are right. The best way to ‘wipe’ or scramble a hard drive disk for safe disposal is to put it through through a degaussing process that eliminates the existing magnetic field on the hard drive and thus eliminates its data. (The next best way to erase hard drive data for drive disposal involves multiple overwrites across the entire disk conforming to DoD standards.)

      2. flora

        Wait a minute… I though laptop evidence was really Russian disinfo… a la Hunter? Sheesh, I get so confused. / ;)

    2. zagonostra

      I haven’t seen the photo myself but Scott Ritter on George Galloway’s MOAT described the IDF planting the flag on the roof of the Al-Shifa Hospital. Ritter really digs into the symbolism when contrasted with the Marines raising the U.S. flag atop Mount Suribachi during the Battle of Iwo Jima.

      1. The Rev Kev

        Hey, if they planted a flag on that hospital then that means that they own it. And that means they should be sending in Army doctors, nurses, surgeons along with real medical gear to treat that hospital’s patients that they now “own.”

      2. Christopher Fy

        As it’s on the roof the building I associated it with the Russians raising the flag over the Berlin Reichstag.

      1. flora

        Thanks. There are non-magnetic metals like aluminum, brass, and copper, and there are magnetic metals like steel…used for gun barrels among other things.

  10. DJG, Reality Czar

    I was doing some basic research this morning, and somehow, I backed into this video.

    A boy and his cat in a refugee camp in Gaza:

    I was reminded how boys at that age, seven or eight, can be moonbeams. I had moonbeam tendencies at that age. My grandnephew resembles this boy, too–all kinds of great explanations for how the world works.

    I was also reminded that a significant number of people are all exercised about “brownness” and “beigeness.” I should post pictures of my sibs and my cousins and me at that age: Ahhh, all little brown subhumans.

    I was reminded when Sting used to sing the following lyrics without tripping over himself to be currently-politically-orthodox.

    There is no historical precedent
    To put the words in the mouth of the president
    There’s no such thing as a winnable war
    It’s a lie we don’t believe anymore
    Mr. Reagan says we will protect you
    I don’t subscribe to this point of view
    Believe me when I say to you
    I hope the Russians love their children too

    Blunt question: Is that kid going to make it?

    1. nippersdad

      Great video! I was amazed at how laid back the cat was. We have ten of them, and, however friendly they may be, I cannot imagine manhandling any of them like that. They would have absolute fits. Those two have a wonderful bond.

    2. JBird4049

      >>>Blunt question: Is that kid going to make it?

      Although your question is likely rhetorical, a blunt answer is that only God knows; a more pragmatic answer is hopefully, but it depends on morally poor individuals, does it not?. Individuals who do not see the other side, which includes the children, as fully human and therefore disposable.

      What a wonderful world we have. /s

  11. Benny Profane

    So, I just learned this morning that the “U.S. Department of the Treasury’s Office of Foreign Assets Control” exists, after opening the CNBC article. Can’t get any clearer than that. We own you. Whatchagonna do about it?

  12. Amateur Socialist

    This morning brings news that my southern VT congressional rep Ms Becca Balint has become the first Jewish member of congress to call for a ceasefire. This after a somewhat controversial protest at a recent fundraiser. I believe I understand now that the controversy was deemed necessary because it might turn out to be effective.

    I hope and pray Bernie is paying attention.

    1. NotTimothyGeithner

      Politicians need to be confronted and ultimately reminded the people preparing their food are more than likely part of the 65%. All elected want to be liked.

      Even Manchin in his dotage fervently believes he has a grand coalition out there waiting for him. Biden doesn’t believe polls. Manchin has a few rich friends and Biden has enough brown nosers around to inure them from direct contact, but these smaller elected should be targeted. Don’t worry about Sanders. He’s worthless. The Congresscritters need to be picked off. Make it a race with a cut off. At some point, there won’t be an option to return to the light. One step is not by asking Sanders to see the light. His former staffers asked to speak with him, and he refused. Examples need to be made. Sanders has used his goodwill not to bend but protect Biden. Now, he’s an advocate of genocide.

      Boycotts should work this way too. Boycotting “Israel” is a mistake. Boycotting McDonald’s over its support of Israel can force the franchisees off the sidelines to be on the side of their customers. The sit-ins of the ‘s weren’t targeting places that didn’t serve African Americans. The boycotts targeted places frequented by blacks that still enforced Jim Crow. They forced the owners to choose between customers and friends at the club which without customers they won’t know.

      Making Angus King’s life hell might be worthwhile.

    2. i just don't like the gravy

      Hope and pray for Bernie?? Ha ha ha. Bernie has been and always was an establishment stooge designed to siphon productive organizing into useless ends (his campaigns).

      1. Jabura Basaidai

        from what i read about his earlier days, he seemed genuine – but would agree that his slide to the bottom accelerated quickly when he tried for the brass ring of presidential candidacy with the dems – he’s toast as far as i’m concerned and his efforts seem nothing more than virtue signaling to try and regain some dignity that will always remain out of his grasp – but he did have a best seller – sheesh….disgusting –

      2. Cassandra

        In my opinion, Bernie did not start out as a sheepdog. I just don’t think he is a very good actor, and he seemed to be genuinely surprised when his message took off in the fall of 2015. The Democratic Party Establishment was absolutely caught off guard when someone they had always considered a joke and a crank suddenly appeared to be a serious threat to HRC’s coronation. She had bought the DNC earlier in 2015, retiring the debts left from 2012, and had not expected to need to expend effort and resources just to secure the nomination.

        It is undeniable, however, that for whatever reason, Bernie has been effectively muzzled and on a very short leash ever since June of 2016. His betrayal of his followers, particularly the millions of young people who thought there just might be an honest pol and a chance for hope and change– that was and is despicable.

        1. Jabura Basaidai

          he made me believe for a moment – the descent into darkness after being knee-capped on Super Tuesday was traitorous to the movement of optimism he created – unforgivable –

    3. John k

      Maybe saddest thing I’ve seen in politics. Imo his history informs he was real, but when Obama and the bought dem establishment confronted him he was toast – and maybe he was shocked at how few pols. ‘Friends/colleagues’, were supportive, aides too, probably felt all alone. Imo you fight, you lose, but you stay the same even if you are beaten up. But as an older person I realize it does get harder to fight the good fight. He’s given up, very sad.

  13. Wukchumni

    I remember dog eared covers of Beatles & Monkeys albums that my older sisters had and barely missed the eight track era thankfully, with its awkward format where if you switched tracks it would plop you into the middle of another song.

    There were so many record stores in the City of Angles, and as I approached adulthood, cassettes reigned, and as one of the early purchasers of a Sony Walkman, circa 1981, the pairing of it and cassette was amazing. It was your very own concert.

    I remember skiing to the cassette from Duran Duran so vividly, it was the first time i’d ever added music to hurling myself down steep embankments repeatedly, and what a revelation, and if you’re like me, you place certain music with a certain event and whenever I hear anything from that album, i’m transported back to the future.

    This was in concert with when I flew perhaps a million miles in the 80’s & 90’s chasing down aged round metal discs, so there was a lot of down time on airplanes, it was perfect.

    I think I did around half a dozen around the world flights and you had to go one direction or the other, and you had 6 months to complete your travel. On one of those trips, a numismatist friend came along and around the world in 80 days later, we returned to LAX.

    We landed in Athens from Bangkok, and his fiance was of Yugoslav heritage, so we decided to take a 24 hour express train from Athens to Belgrade, which took 52 hours and en route my first Walkman had been kind of crapping out on me and finally bit the dust as in dead as a door nail.

    On the train were mostly Yugoslavs and nobody hardly spoke English, but all the cool kids had shirts with it on them-exotic wording, and it didn’t matter if it said, it seemed.

    So maybe in hour 47 of our sojourn on rails, a Yugoslav about my age gets on the train somewhere and is sitting across from me, and I’m trying to coax the Walkman back to life and he’s watching, and a little nicety like language wasn’t needed to perform a transaction, as he makes his intentions known by pulling out a wad of Dinara, as in lets make a deal!

    How do I get money out of something that is dead to me, but convey its condition?

    I point to the Walkman and pantomime splitting my throat, and he gets it, I pull approx $30 US worth of paper money out of his hand, and we both smile, he’ll be the coolest dude any of his contemporaries know, but they will probably wonder why he never lets anybody use it.

    Careless Memories, by Duran Duran

    1. The Rev Kev

      You could almost write a history of our culture in terms of the technology used in playing music. So you might start with records – 33s, 45,s and 78s – then the switch to cassettes which made it more easier to listen to music in cars and like you point out on your person with the use of a Sony Walkman, then on to CDs before the transition to digital files meaning you could have an entire library of music on an iPod for example and from there the switch to music on mobiles. The subject of whether music has gotten better or worse over those very same decades would be the subjectfor another book however.

      1. Alice X

        The technology has actually meant that people don’t play music themselves. Player pianos were first and the affluent who could afford them didn’t need to play themselves or even hire someone to play for them. On and on.

        Timeline of audio formats

        Before that people would play music themselves, in the home, or social groups. That has been lost.

        1. ambrit

          True. When was the last time any of us was involved in a “sing along,” not including singing along to Sesame Street or Schoolhouse Rock! How can you sing along to a recording and get any sense of ‘call and response?’ A capella was always the hardest style of vocalization for me.
          We have at least one professional singer in the Commenteriat. Did you find this to be true, or were you blessed somehow?
          Anyway, stay safe.

          1. GramSci

            In their retirement, my sister and brother-in-law have been singing in multiple local chorales. Yesterday she tested positive for Covid. Again. Blind faith in Dr. Fauci.

          2. Cassandra

            I was not at all professional, but I sang all my life. My favorite social activity was choral singing; there is nothing like the thrill of feeling the vibrations generated in the core of your body meshing with those of the singers around you and making new resonances. And then the music ends and for a brief moment the echoes wash back around you.

            In order to sing well, a group must become a single organism for the duration of the music. In a large group, it is helpful to have a director to gather the disparate threads and weave them together, but you still must always be aware of what is going on with your neighbors. A capella kicks it up a notch as there is no cover if your tuning slips. Early music polyphony is fantastic; the line is handed from one voice to another and everyone has a moment to shine. And then there is Gregorian chant, unmetered, the line must move and swell and breathe as one.

            The music binds you together as it breathes together and as you literally breathe together. And there lies the rub.

            It breaks my heart that I will never again have that experience. I do not really care about things like restaurant meals or sporting events. But singing…

            1. Eclair

              Cassandra, thank you for your lovely description of participating in a choral group! I have friends who sing in groups ranging from barber shop quartet to large choirs, and friends who play instruments (fiddles) and their activities are an integral part of their lives, even as they become older.

              I, alas, cannot sing, except in the shower, and cannot play an instrument. But I have experienced that feeling of being part of a larger organism, when dancing. Pre-Covid, we would dance weekly with a contra-dance group. When the entire group was on-beat, with all the dancers and the musicians, we would, as you say, breathe together. And feel the actual vibrations and a hundred feet came down and hit the floor at the same time. Absolutely exhilarating! So, small hall, many dancers, all breathing hard ….. I miss it so much.

              1. Cassandra

                Yes, Eclair, that’s it! That moment when it snaps into focus and you are part of a living being bigger than yourself, creating something beautiful. My condolences for your loss…

          3. griffen

            Now I can’t help myself, but since it is the season…Buddy in the “Elf” movie has some memorable scenes. The best way to spread Christmas cheer, is singing loud for all to hear !!

            I’m in a store, and I’m singing !

          4. Laura in So Cal

            I sang to my Mom as we lost her to Alzheimers and she sometimes joined in. She could remember fragments of lyrics and still could carry a tune even though she didn’t know who I was. We both were mediocre singers but we had enjoyed singing together since our church choir days when I was a teenager.

            Recorded music didn’t work nearly as well in connecting with her.

            1. Cassandra

              I have seen an incredible video of an ancient ballerina sadly sunk in dementia. A visitor begins a recording of Swan Lake for her and it awakens her muscle memory so that her gnarled hands lift and float with all of their long-past grace. It is a miracle.

      2. Feral Finster

        Edison cylinders, before the advent of the 78.

        Someone wrote a surprisingly interesting book on the history of recorded music formats.

          1. Jabura Basaidai

            yo w – will definitely check out the MIM – i have my grandfather’s 1922 A2 Gibson Mandolin and once owned a D’Angelico Excel, so that museum will be interesting to visit next time in Phoenix – here in ASquared there used to be a rotating display of musical instruments on the second floor of Hill Auditorium from the on-campus Stearns Collection of Musical Instruments displayed at the School of Music, Theatre & Dance – fascinating too

            1. Jabura Basaidai

              thank you AX –
              nice when Lage finally gets to the song at 3:30 – also wonderful seeing the actual guitar Charlie played – wondered if there was another pickup when seeing the two holes below the pickup on it – i have every/any recording that Charlie made – too few –

              here are two jazz greats, Herb Ellis and Joe Pass doing Seven Come Eleven which just blows me away every time i hear it –

              here’s the original Benny Goodman Sextet and Lionel Hampton on the vibes –
              and Charlie on guitar –

              every picture i’ve seen of Charlie with his guitar, and even though they are black and white, the guitar doesn’t look all blonde like the one that Lage is playing – i’m sure there is provenance for the guitar but i’ve seen about every picture of Charlie and never with a guitar that looks like that – but what do i know –

    2. digi_owl

      Cold war was a weird time for tech, in particular on the east side of Europe.

      For example Sinclair’s ZX Spectrum basically bootstrapped home computing in USSR. But mostly by being a reference point for clones that took the core platform far beyond both longevity and capability of its UK original.

  14. Wukchumni

    Purposeful universe aeon
    (in the huddle}

    ‘Ok, everybody go deep and try to get open’

    I’m content with being a pantheist, where everything is godlike on this good orb… but I get it being a long suffering Bills fan, a good many need invisible means of support, its what we do in convincing ourselves to live via myth.

    1. ChrisFromGA

      My coping mechanism is to find an alternate NFC team to root for, knowing that the likelihood of them meeting up in the big game is essentially zero.

      Falcons? Too bad they have no QB.
      Vikings? A possible candidate. Josh Dobbs is fun to watch.
      Niners? Kind of unrootable if you ask me, ever since Shanahan blew a 28-3 lead vs. the dreaded Darth Hoodie.
      Cowboys? The hate for Dak makes me want to like him. But, I think not.
      Washington Football team? Anything associated with D.C. and clownworld is a hard no.

      1. Wukchumni

        As it so happens with a lot of promising QB’s, the league figures them out after a few seasons, and you become Carson Wentz on the sidelines in civvies not so much rooting for another playcaller to go down, but counting on it to bring him some modicum of redemption, they like me-they really like me again.

        Not saying that Josh is on the same trajectory, but thinking along those lines…

        1. ChrisFromGA

          I say give him a running game and a defense, and any coach in the league would take him, save maybe Andy Reid.

          Thought experiment – put Josh on the Patriots, with Darth Hoodie’s defensive mind, and discipline-based approach, what happens?

          1. Wukchumni

            I cringe everytime he decides that he’s a bruising RB trying to teach the defense a lesson or 2 about how tough he is, as he takes a beating instead of kneeling, and you’d swear he ingests Ipecac on the sidelines as he coughs it up so often.

            That said, i’m willing to give him the doubt of my benefit like any long suffering Bills fan, which is incidentally, all of us.

            1. ChrisFromGA

              My best guess is that the problem isn’t that the league has figured out Josh, it’s that he hasn’t figured out himself.

              A yoga retreat might help more than a new OC.

              1. tegnost

                well if you could get those guys on the other team to lay off and give him some space he would be fine ;/

  15. antidlc

    RE: IBM pulls adverts from X after report finding they ran next to Nazi content

    When I saw that link, I immediately thought of Edwin Black’s “IBM and the Holocaust”.

    1. digi_owl

      Heh, the number of US companies that were happy to do business in Nazi Germany is long. Fanta got created by Coca Cola’s subsidiary in Germany during the war for example.

      1. GramSci

        And let us not forget that Good Democrat Averell Harriman who bequeathed us the Union Banking Corporation, Prescott Bush, Foster Dulles, et al. (cf. possibly the last good Guardian story, 2004).

    2. Bryan

      IBM didn’t just “do business” with Germany, IBM facilitated the entire concentration camp/rail systemd up to and including a full-time office in each camp. Those numbers tattooed on prisoner arms, those were the numbers used on the IBM punch cards to track prisoners by demographic such as “crime,” trade and gender. Another good example of the added value provided by war.

  16. Alice X

    >Purposeful universe – Neither atheism nor theism adequately explains reality. That is why we must consider the middle ground between the two

    The piece starts off on the wrong foot and hobbles along. Well into it:

    At the other extreme, it is common for humanists to argue that cosmic purpose would be irrelevant to the meaning of human existence.

    I can go along with that. I’m still trying to take in the new theory of life as a conservation of entropy. If I even have that much right.

    A New Physics Theory of Life

    From the standpoint of physics, there is one essential difference between living things and inanimate clumps of carbon atoms: The former tend to be much better at capturing energy from their environment and dissipating that energy as heat.

    1. digi_owl

      At its base, this notion of cosmic irrelevancy was perhaps what fueled Lovecraft’s writing. His cosmic beings seemed to care no more for humans than we do for flies.

    2. Grebo

      Goff says:

      The difference is that life has objective value…

      But value is subjective! As is purpose. If you are looking for purpose in the World you have already assumed God.

      His casino argument makes no sense either.

  17. ChrisFromGA

    Blinken’s face during Genocide Joe’s latest bout with Tourettes reminds me of a lawyer who had dedicated his life to the law going into a courtroom, after having argued for his client to the best of their ability, and the Judge calling him to the bench and saying:

    “Yeah, you made a good case but just for grins and giggles, I am deciding this one based on a coin flip. Heads, or tails?”

    1. Jabura Basaidai

      if you’re referring to the “dictator” name-calling and revealing “too much detail” about the negotiations – well Blinken looks extremely constipated and trying to pass a particularly difficult fecal obstruction – read the whole room groaned in unison – dems have to be the three monkeys to vote for The Husk – the Three Stooges have more on the ball than this guy –

    1. tegnost

      call me cynical, but like with QE, the plan certainly was to just do a quick recapitalization then get back to normal but it worked so great for wall st that the interested parties wouldn’t allow it to stop…same with gaza, someone in the state dept. was like “hey, we’ll just let it go on for a week and israel can kill more of hamas’ future fighters and their prospective moms” ….then it was two weeks, then it was 3 weeks, and now it is starting to “look bad” and everyone knows that looking bad is way worse than being bad.

      1. nippersdad

        That is what it looks like to me as well.

        The UN just approved those “humanitarian pauses” so beloved of our neocons, and the best description of them I have seen was by Moon of Alabama, when they characterized them as “twenty hours of genocide followed by four hours of ethnic cleansing”.

        You just cannot be too cynical these days.

      2. Alice X

        >looking bad is way worse than being bad

        One hospital reports that, as it is out of fuel, a majority of the premature babies have died as have patients on life support.

        Now for the mass starvation and death from dehydration.

        1. Katniss Everdeen

          The other night on the network nightly “news,” they showed video of about a dozen Palestinian newborns, dressed only in disposable diapers, all laying together on a table or gurney.

          Then they showed video of joni ernst, chuck schumer, hakeem jeffries, and the new speaker johnson at the pro-israel rally. They raised their clasped hands over their heads and chanted repeatedly into the microphone on the podium, “We stand with israel!” while grinning triumphantly.

          Interspersed were commercials about where to buy the perfect Christmas presents.

          This unrelentingly bloodthirsty, murderous spectacle is so profoundly disturbing. While I know this is the way america has always operated, somehow this time it seems different. The shameless, guilt-free, open celebration of the carnage and suffering being wrought by our “friend” israel with u.s. cheers and cash and arms just seems too much this time.

          These images of grown, adult american “statesmen” and capitalist titans, privileged all, incessantly proclaiming the god-given righteousness of the slaughter of newborn babies and their siblings and their parents is JUST TOO MUCH THIS TIIME.

          1. Jabura Basaidai

            yes it is too much – brings me to tears too often, or maybe not enough – it is unforgivable and will not be forgotten –

  18. dave -- just dave

    The linked article on Purposeful Universe by Philip Goff reminded me of something I heard in the last years of the twentieth century, when I would occasionally hang out at the Transpersonal Psychology Interest Group suite at the annual meeting of the American Psychological Association. Presented as the basic assumptions of the mystical worldview were the following propositions:

    1/ The Universe is here on purpose.

    2/Humankind has, or could have, some connection with that purpose.

    3/It is possible to improve your ability to perceive and cooperate with that purpose in the place and time where you find yourself.

    These ideas made sense to me at the time I heard them, and I still hope they are true.

    1. Joe Renter

      Dave- there is purpose in everything you experience and all that exists. We are something like gods that incarnate from realms other than the physical. We spiritualize matter and contribute to the kingdoms below us (mineral, vegetable and animal).
      I suggest looking into Theosophy and the work of Alice Bailey to get an understanding of the Esoteric teaching tradition. It’s a long path back, but know we all evolve eventually. Pondering this reality tunnel is a start. May all find the tools for True Happiness.

    2. GramSci

      If there’s a purpose to the Universe, I don’t think I’ll ever be wise enough to understand it. My purpose, however ill-served, is simply to promote peace and harmony wherever I find it.

    3. Kouros

      It is more fun to read “Calculating God” by Robert J Sawyer. Same points but conveyed in a very epic but nevertheless not too drmatic, a bit self effaced Canadian way.

  19. Wukchumni

    NY Promised Pot Store Loans Would Build Wealth and Create Equity. Instead, They’re Loading Businesses With Steep Costs. THE CITY

    The only 2 items greatly deflating as most everything else is going up in price are tv sets & marijuana.

    I saw 70 inch HD tv sets @ Wal*Mart for $499 and an ounce of the kind is only $49 at the local pot shoppe.

    Legalization killed the little guy grower, you could almost make more money growing pot marjoram.

    1. GramSci

      OTOH, this little guy grower in Outer Pentagonia can legally grow four Cannabis plants in his back yard, so long as they are not visible from the street. With a little planning, I can grow two auto-flowering crops during the growing season, even though one crop is more than sufficient for Juana and my self-medication needs.

      1. Wukchumni

        Ahem hemp as a living…

        Tiny Town had quite the reputation as where the goods were grown back in the day starting in the 60’s or 70’s as we’re all hidden away for the most part and the community was 420 friendly when it was illegal, and I remember going by grow houses and getting a contact high in an innocent drive-by say in 2007, and later talking to the farmer who sold his wares grown out of his garage mahal, down in SoCal for $2800 a pound. He told me it was worth $6k a pound delivered in Tx, as they were way draconian on any dank around deep in the heart of.

        Good luck with that now, and as an added bonus electricity rates have gone up plenty, along with a plethora of spendy Ag applications.

        The only constant between them and current corporate cannabis is they are both cash businesses.

    2. mrsyk

      What legalization killed is a high viability/low risk alternative economy income producing option for the under-privledged. This, of course, is entirely the opposite of the heavily gilded “social equity” framing (I’m going baroque!), if I may quote AI(my google algos); Social equity provisions in cannabis legislation are premised on the hope that the profit generated around adult-use cannabis can be leveraged to ameliorate the damage done by racially biased enforcement of prohibition in black and brown communities.

  20. GramSci

    Bob Lord and friends over at is calling attention to fast-approaching oral arguments in Moore v. United States. Citing their open letter and amicus brief to the Court, they write:

    “The justices of the U.S. Supreme Court now appear poised to consider a case that could preempt the future “taxation of unrealized gains or extreme wealth” … highlighting “multiple potential conflicts of interest where billionaire benefactors of three justices on this Court have a substantial interest in the case.”

    I wonder what Harlan Crow and his good friend Cornel West would say about this?

    1. ambrit

      If played right, this could be the ‘incident’ that destroys the Supreme Court’s reputation for good. A ‘real’ leftist would use this as an irrefutable argument for the complete dissolution of the Court.
      As a servant of the State, the Court system therefore also serves the “sponsors” of the State.
      I remember reading somewhere a comment about the Law not only has to ‘uphold the societal norms,’ but, most importantly, must be seen to be doing so. Today’s Court is doing a version of that, but is inadvertently highlighting the essential rot at the heart of “The Law” today. When Supreme Court Justices are shown to be accepting anything of value from political ‘players,’ honour demands that said justices retire from the post, post haste.
      Brendan Behan: “I respect kindness in human beings first of all, and kindness to animals. I don’t respect the law; I have a total irreverence for anything connected with society except that which makes the roads safer, the beer stronger, the food cheaper and the old men and old women warmer in the winter and happier in the summer.”
      ― Brendan Behan
      Anything else is a normalization of corruption.
      Here we are, at the mercy of a self identified comprador class.

  21. mrsyk

    Ae you suggesting that Cornel West has a similar relationship to Harlan Crow as Clarence Thomas? That seems like a stretch.

    1. GramSci

      Check out my link to The Hill: West had an opportunity to return Crow’s campaign donation and decry the relationship between Clarence Thomas and Harlan Crow. Instead he defended that relationship. Some “socialist”!

      1. Jabura Basaidai

        g-damn, Cornell too – another one bites the dust – feet of clay must be a requirement to even consider candidacy, and each and every one of them from what ever party or independent without exception now checks that box – guess not going to pull lever for any of them –

      2. mrsyk

        I did. I’m not a fan of The Hill. It’s fair to say West is just another disappointment. He has no political instinct or skills and hasn’t a snowball’s chance of becoming president. As you put, he missed yet another opportunity to do the right thing. None the less, there’s something off when you compare him to Clarence Thomas via Harlan Crow. Shouldn’t this discussion be about money in politics, or about how only the wealthy get representation? I’m weary of character smearing, right or wrong, particularly if it’s the main course. It’s part and parcel to ID politics and smothers the discussion of issues.

        1. GramSci

          “Shouldn’t this discussion be about money in politics, or about how only the wealthy get representation?”

          Yes, but that’s the discussion West chose not to have. Instead we got (paraphrasing) “Harlan Crow is actually a good guy because he doesn’t like Trump and Orange Man Bad.”

          1. mrsyk

            A good point. West disappoints with the TDS symptoms. It would be helpful if he recognized Trump as a symptom not a cause. I’ve sat back in my armchair and decided that West might not be good at money. This bothers me just as much, and might also explain why the three grand wasn’t returned immediately.

    1. Katniss Everdeen

      The “data security breaches” bother me a lot less–nobody’s data is “secure” anywhere on the web, so why would it be any different for prisoners and their families–than the fact that there’s a profitable “prison phone company” in the first place.

  22. bobert

    Birding Question:

    Does anyone have a recommendation for a no-waste, general purpose bird seed for my new feeder? Thanks in advance!

    1. GramSci

      I buy 50# bags of black oil sunflower seed from Tractor Supply. Most seed eating birds in Ohio and Outer Pentagonia love it, but your birds may make different dietary demands.

      1. Jabura Basaidai

        Costco sells a nice 40# bag of mixed components to attract a wide variety of birdies – black oil sunflower, safflower, striped sunflower, peanut pieces, raisins and dried cherries – i’ve had squirrel-proof feeders to prevent the gymnasts from access but also had to prevent raccoons and deer that will knock them off and chow down – always a challenge –

    2. Lexx

      ‘No-Mess’ from Wild Birds Unlimited. We have enough ground feeders that very little stays on the ground for long. Add a suet feeder for the clingers like woodpeckers and flickers.

      Um, good luck with the squirrels… fair warning.

      1. endeavor

        If you have Red Squirrels in your area they will keep out the larger squirrels that try to get on your feeder. They are tough little guys and only eat a small amount of seed that falls to the ground. Put some seed on the ground for a couple of days to attract them. They will stick around for the whole winter.

        1. Randy

          I was told that Red Squirrels will defeat Gray Squirrels in a fight. I was told Red Squirrels were aggressive to birds competing for food on a feeder even to the point of biting the heads off Chickadees.

          When I started feeding birds I found out that was all BS. My observations tell me that Grays will always kick ass on Reds and Chickadees are not that stupid as to allow a Red squirrel or anything else close enough to hurt them much less bite off their head.

          Red Squirrels are entertaining because they use tunnels through the snow to approach the feeder popping up to see if they are on course to their goal. I put stove pipe around my feeder posts to make sure all squirrels get only leftovers on the ground. If you allow squirrels access to your feeders you will go broke buying sunflower seed and the birds will go mostly hungry.

          It is entertaining watching squirrels try to defeat your barriers to their entry. Don’t bother with the slinky method either.

    3. Randy

      If you live in the northern US go with sunflower seed, everything likes sunflower seed. My wife tried buying a mixture billed as Cardinal attractant but the birds just pick out the mixture and toss it on the ground to get at the sunflower seed. My chickens pull the same trick with their feed. They dig for bits of corn throwing everything else on the floor of their coop. I let them clean up their wasteful habits before I refill the feeder. They either clean up their mess or they go hungry.

      If you live in bear country wait until they hibernate before filling feeders. It is amazing how much trouble bears will go through to get a couple mouthfuls of sunflower seed.

  23. tegnost

    While I only agree with kunstler about half the time he has a distinctive madcap style, and today is an entertaining read

    1. Screwball

      Agree 100%. He does have a way with words. Like you, I don’t always agree with him, but in general I think he’s too optimistic. IOW, I don’t think he’s cynical enough. Maybe that’s because I’m too cynical. :-)

      1. GramSci

        Too optimistic, indeed. He seems to believe that in the end Truth will win out, and we’ll all return to the Gold Standard. In the meantime, it’s all the fault of the N-words and the hippies.

  24. Feral Finster

    “China Will Crack Down on Fentanyl Sent to the US. Worse Drugs Could Fill the Vacuum. Vice”

    The idea that all we gotta do is get rid of the Fent *or its precursors) and we got the problem fixed is silly. People will just find other ways to get high.

    The question we should be asking is why are people in America so desperate to get high, knowing where drugs such as crystal or fentanyl or tranq can lead? We’ve all seen street addicts, and that life does NOT look like fun. So how desperate does one have to be to get out of one’s head, that you would even think of going down that road?

    Of course, answering that question requires us to take a hard look at ourselves and our lives and where we are going, and it is much easier to blame foreigners.

    1. Wukchumni

      Sometimes I wonder if cities don’t almost embrace fentanyl as a bullwark against what probably costs them the most of anybody in the community to look after, it’d be as if every down & outer was mailed a noose with long enough rope attached and advised of local rafters to best apply oneself.

      1. MaryLand

        Of course in Canada if you can’t support yourself you can apply to be euthanized. They will accommodate that request. No pretense of caring for the poor and it’s all legal.

        1. Randy

          In the US if you want to be euthanized you can buy fentanyl. The US is a more self-service culture I guess. Less hassle and cheaper for everybody concerned.

    2. Katniss Everdeen

      You do have to wonder whether, as president Demento was bitchin’ about China’s fentanyl causing america’s drug problems, Xi didn’t suggest that it might help if every Tom, Dick and Harry who got a toe over what used to be a southern border wasn’t welcomed in and transported to the furthest reaches of the country, with a gigantic debt to pay to the very people makin’ beaucoup bucks off those drugs in the first place.

      Beijing can only help people who help themselves. Or so I’d imagine Xi might have been thinking.

  25. Jason Boxman

    Students Are Missing School at an Alarming Rate (NY Times via

    The academic achievement of millions of American students faltered during the pandemic — and in many cases, has not recovered three years later. The latest data on student attendance offers one explanation: Far more students are missing many days of school compared with before the pandemic.

    LOL. Can I beat my head into a bloody pulp?

    The word COVID does not appear in this story.

    Those numbers are from the 2021-22 school year. Is it possible it simply took more time for students to get back into a routine?
    Preliminary data from the 2022-23 school year suggests the situation has improved, but only slightly.

    The quality of stupid in this world is a sight to behold. No one could possibly divine any particular reason why this might be happening.

    The pandemic affected several key drivers of attendance. It has disrupted students’ relationships — with other students at school, and with teachers, who often are burned out and leaving their jobs at higher rates. And it has set students back academically, which makes coming to school far less enjoyable. Other factors, such as family instability, rising student anxiety and an increase in school suspensions, may also be at play.

    I mean, this is breathtakingly stupid. Not a word on COVID. I guess kids don’t get sick? lolz.

    1. mrsyk

      Here’s a hint why covid is not mentioned (My emphasis).The Findings: Post-Pandemic absenteeism is widespread, but it is worse in high-poverty schools
      Sadly, the pandemic is not over for me as covid is raging in my extended family with five current cases.

      1. .Tom

        There’s a lot of it about. I’m feeling better today after a + on Sunday and a rough week. An upstairs neighbor reported his + yesterday.

    2. Screwball

      Coming from someone who has taught the last 5 years, and through the pandemic, I can tell you things have gotten progressively worse over those years. I don’t know the reason why, COVID, or other things related to COVID (lock downs, Zoom school, etc) but the students are not where they should be when they enter my classes (college STEM class).

      I am not the only one who has noticed this. I have spoke with others, recently, and over the last few years that the off site learning was not a good thing, and the students over these times are now quite behind the 8 ball as far as learning goes. Like I said, I don’t know the reasons, but this current crop of people (not all, but most) seem like they have no desire to learn. They do the least amount of work possible, skip as many classes as possible, and do just enough to get a passing grade. Many even refuse help when I offer to give it to them. They simply don’t want to spend the time, and apparently don’t care.

      I think this will be my last year (I’m retired so I don’t have to do this). I am not the only one. Just a couple of weeks ago I was saying this to a couple of fellow profs and they feel the same way, and also added, they are hearing this from many others. I expect many will turn in their teaching tools and call it a day after this year. I can’t say I blame them.

      Again, I don’t know the reasons why, that’s above my pay grade, but if I was to point to one thing – it would be “HOME.” As in, it all starts at home. No work ethic, no ambition, no respect for teachers or fellow students, and they don’t seem to care about their grade as long as they past (again, doing as little as possible). Shame, so many of these young people have no clue what world they are about to enter, and how rotten, nasty, and unfair it is.

      Now if we had classes on cell phones….

      1. GramSci

        The students I see now, from outside academia, all seem to have enjoyed their Covid years off. They don’t particularly want to get back on a treadmill to mass extinction.

      2. Randy

        When I was in high school in the ’70’s 50% of the students in my class didn’t care about anything, grades or learning. They were intellectually lazy. Many were also physically lazy. They could leave high school and join the military or go to work in a window factory shoving blocks of wood through a saw while making enough to (barely) support a family until they retired on Social Security. It seems they were happy with that kind of low level existence.

        Now that the US has de-industrialized the 50% that are motivated know that only 10% will be rewarded and then only if they know “somebody”. The rest know they are going nowhere so why bother.

      3. NotTimothyGeithner

        Besides absenteeism, there are a few issues.

        A classmate’s older brother was quite smart, always reading out material or books well beyond his grade level. His little brother, not remotely as talented as his brother, simply would read whatever his brother read. Seeing Tyler read these books always drove the rest of the class to read harder books. Long story short, my 3rd grade class (a small catholic school) devoured Lord of the Rings. The kids stayed at home and became weirdos instead of seeing other kids and thinking, “should I be doing that? If that doofus can, I should be able to also.”

        With the disruption, the kids weren’t having the chats we remember with other kids. What is everyone doing?

        The other problem is school is supposed to be easy or easy to manage academically. The rest of it was the hard part. We kind of forget this as we age. The kids were home for a long time. There is no coordinated effort to reset standards. Everything is a hodge podge, so you have kids who are classes they have no business in with the class being dumbed down for a test with the kids moving onto the next class. When school gets hard or becomes incomprehensible, the kids are still kids.

        Remember a college freshman was in 9th grade when Covid hit. What was the state of their STEM classes in high school? Did they do lab activities? For math, did they just look up the steps on google? Explaining why they don’t test well but have great homework.

        If you really want to be worried look at the presentation of math on IEXCEL and EdPuzzles that students have been getting in lieu of work sheets or even/odd number assignments. These programs are awful. The accountability isn’t there, and they are so tedious kids will not do them beyond the bare minimum. They don’t explanations of their mistakes just that they were wrong, so effectively, they don’t get anything out of it. Because there is no coordination, the teachers are simply left on an island doing what they can do, and since school has become difficult before the kids were propped up, they are responding. All they have heard is school gets harder every year from adults who walked uphill both ways to skill, and so the kids don’t have the life experience to recognize what is wrong. The kids just assume they are dumb, and so they act out.

        The kids were out of school for a long time, and I have absolutely no idea what the name of the secretary of education is. They should be the most important person in the country.

        I looked him up and clicked under “news”. Miguel Cardona is worried about TikTok and “misinformation.” He’s worried the kids will get exposed to propaganda and not believe in wise father Biden.

        TikTok is the problem. Besides the increasing difficulty as they age which kids aren’t necessarily equipped to deal with which is why they go to school, neoliberalism has created a situation where the kids wellbeing isn’t a priority by the powers that be.

        1. Screwball

          I like all you said. So many issues…

          Education took the business model approach and turned it into an assembly line instead of a job shop.

          Round pegs, round holes, square pegs, square hole. Fit, guide, and help people to their talent instead of the next quarterly earnings report, which is what it has become. Too many put into the position to fail, not excel.

          As more teachers give it up, the rot will continue.

  26. Anthony K Wikrent

    From yesterday’s links: “Q&A with Rep. Dean Phillips” [The Dartmouth (Petal)]. Phillips: “People are screaming as loud as they can that they’re desperate. Life is not affordable.”

    I’ve been wanting to vent each time I see some analysis of why the USA public is so dour. If you want to solve economic precocity, you HAVE to address the fundamental cause of USURY. Nobody is doing this. There will never be fully shared economic prosperity — in USA or any other country — until the bankers’ dictatorship is dismantled. Phillips does not address this, either.

    It’s not really an issue of affordability; the lack of affordability is not a cause, it is an effect. The cause is the economic rents extracted throughout the economy.

    Former financial regulator William Black, David Cay Johnston, Michael Hudson and others wrote about this repeatedly during and immediately after the 2008-2009 crash. Yves wrote about it and published Econned. Simon Johnson and James Kwak published it in 13 Bankers.

    Nothing that any of these writer recommended as policy changes has been adopted. So the looting has proceeded apace. Bidenomics is merely a salve pasted over a profusely bleeding wound. We have to stop the bleeding,

    And to stop the bleeding we need to destroy the bankers’ dictatorship.

    1. GramSci

      It’s not just the bankers, they are only representative of the class they serve. We’ve seen similar avaricious behavior from the likes of Bill Gates, Sam Walton, pick your favorite Anthony Fauci, or TV host. Beyond usury, until there is an effective maximum wage, things will continue to deteriorate.

      1. Jabura Basaidai

        thank you AX for that – don’t know if you’re old enough to have enjoyed Rocky and Bullwinkle cartoons but they were a lifesaver when i was in grade school and junior high – so thoroughly subversive and satirical – Dudley became my little brother Doug’s nickname that he still responds – Peabody and Sherman and Edward Everett Horton’s voice for the Fractured Fairy Tales – lived through a classic epic era of TV – you still a Detroit person? – i grew up there and very proud say i’m from Detroit – live a short drive away – still go to Eastern Market –

  27. Wukchumni

    Advice from 1928 Sequoia & Grant Grove NP’s guidebook:

    “Black and Brown bear.~Found throughout the Parks and very plentiful at Giant Forest during the spring and early summer months, where several at one time may be seen at Bear Hill.

    These bears are not ferocious, and under all ordinary circumstances will run from man. Young of the same litter often vary in color from cinnamon to brown or black.

    Visitors must not feed the bears. They are fed daily from camp garbage.”

    1. mrsyk

      Well, back then the bears weren’t competing with the homeless over the garbage. Things were a lot friendlier.

  28. michael99

    Via a comment at the Menzie Chinn link on inflation:
    Revisiting Greedflation, Barry Ritholtz

    I was pretty skeptical about Greedflation initially; when i ranked the top 15 sources of US inflation in mid-2022, “Corporate Profit Seeking” was at the bottom, ranked 13 out of 15 inflation causes.
    But as time went on, more research and data became available. Slowly but surely, we came to learn that more companies were adapting to the pandemic era’s mix of rabid demand and supply chain snarls with a specific approach choosing “Price over volume.”

  29. Jabura Basaidai

    think perhaps Doctorow’s headline is a bit hyperbolic? – is he desperate for readers?
    “Are we in a countdown to all-out nuclear war?”

    1. mrsyk

      Seems like we live in hyperbolic times. I’d sure like to wake up in a different timeline one of these mornings.

      1. Wukchumni

        If you could go back in time and under the rules of engagement as per my terms, what era and where would you want to be?

        I’d want to go back to first contact with the local tribes around say 1750, but only if i’m not carrying any diseases that could do them in, as they have stone age immunity systems-the resulting deaths not dissimilar in number to what a nuclear weapon can do on a percentage basis to a population.

        On second thought, i’m good right here & now.

        1. Jabura Basaidai

          maybe 1490 or earlier here in n. america – indigenous in central and s. america could get sacrificial – would definitely have to be before the infection of white euro-trash to this side of the Atlantic – but trying to figure a different timeline/era is always polkadots and moonbeams – my larcenous side leans to the prohibition era before big brother had a strong hold in the manner of today – oh well, i ain’t good with here and now but do we really have another choice – please tell me –

          1. Wukchumni

            I know the area like the back of my hand (a real misnomer in my opinion, bet you couldn’t pick out the back of your hand if offered a dozen pictures of different ones) and it wouldn’t have changed all that much in terms of looks, but the vegetation would be really different, lots of low lying stuff went away, i’ve read of grasses 5 to 6 feet tall, you never see that now.

            1. Jabura Basaidai

              ever so often will run across a tree that was never cut down during the epic slaughter of trees here in Michigan – they are huge and have to wonder what it must have been like to live with these immense mysterious creatures – First Nation folks didn’t have axes to mutilate the trees – i lived in the UP of Michigan for a while and you can go places and see massive stumps of white pines from long ago – a friend that lives in San Francisco has told me stories he read of the massive Redwoods that inhabited the Bay area – the unbridled greed of our ancestors upon this continent was without equal – and it is still occurring – yep, any time before 1492 in N. America would be fine for me – have an unending fascination of trees – btw sorry to read of your knowledge of departure – i have a scar from where they cracked my chest to get at my heart and switch valve out for a bovine one – friends are departing constantly – lost my dearest and best friend to cirrhosis earlier this year – remember reading earlier this week about Yves’s loss – know you’re a bit younger, but age ain’t got nothing to do with it – i’ve shared a couple of poems here before – decided even though they were appreciated wouldn’t share again, but thought i would share this one with you – they actually look different through my formatting but that isn’t available to me here so here it is unformatted – you live a full life from what you have written here so i think you will appreciate this poem –

              Do Not Count the Days

              Though the days we count are surely numbered feel wonder
              with all your might through the pleasures and strife, be careful
              of rhetoric and hype or get caught in the excitement of this torture.

              When the sky bears down with a fistful of frightened stars
              disturbing harmony with your environment preventing
              peace from petty ambitions and rivalries, expand,
              Do not contract the circle and circumference
              of life, your life is your education so
              expand to infinite dimensions.
              We can be aroused by hate,
              Or touch upon
              the sense of
              in life,
              Do not count the days.

              Nothing resembles a person
              as much as the way they live, and
              die inside by degrees. The color of life and
              death not a disease of the mind or of sorrow, be
              at peace with yourself, every defense provokes assault.

              Accept silence and derive enjoyment from people and places
              without expectation, do not live a life devoid of energy,
              Become a savant amassing knowledge. Fame and
              success never define accomplishment and leave
              you stranded upon expectation where wealth
              will only nourish and sustain a feeble and
              flickering flame. But to only survive
              confers no distinction either,
              Do not count the days.

              Become the personification
              of humility and deference
              mining a vein of humor
              and fantasy enhanced
              by a total disregard
              for political and
              social theories.
              And do not count the days

        2. mrsyk

          Post-Civil War Northern California comes to mind pretty quick.
          I really shouldn’t complain. It’s been a good run.

    2. Polar Socialist

      Well, he has a tendency of being somewhat hyperbolic when it comes to nuclear confrontation, but he’s also often merely reflecting the Russian TV-discussions he’s watching. In this case more of the latter: according to The Evening with Vladimir Solovyov the West is losing on every front, the world politicvs resemble those of before the WW1 and that can only mean a thermonuclear war because Genocide Joe has no other options.

      So, yeah, it’s hyperbole, but not by Doctorow. In this case he’s just a messenger. So don’t shoot him.

  30. JBird4049

    >>>As Alexander Mercouris pointed out, citing Henry Kissinger, insurgencies don’t need to win to win. All they need to do is survive.

    This was the ultimate strategy of the winning side of the American Revolution, Afghanistan’s wars with the Soviet Union and the United States, and the United States with Vietnam. It does not mean that it did not hurt both sides, but if one side just gets tired and leaves, who wins? And before anyone starts talking about winning the battles, the losing side in all those wars usually won the battles.

    1. Polar Socialist

      Technically Afghanistan’s government was doing well against the insurgents for several years after Soviets bid their farewell. It was only after Mr. Yeltsin stopped sending them ammo to accommodate The West that the secular Afghanistan fell to the less-than-secular Afghanistan which then fell to the not-secular-at-all Afghanistan.

  31. dday

    I’d like to see Sahra Wagenknecht move to Arizona and run for the US Senate. She would tie in knots our very own SKari Lake.

    A “conservative leftist”, now that’s a slogan.

    1. JBird4049

      Without knowing Wagenknecht’s, I can say that the term “conservative leftist” could be applied to me.

      Today’s establishment left in the Democratic Party consist of Neoliberal, IdPol extremists, with a side of permanent war. I would be labeled a bigoted, antisemitic Putin lover, and communist. And a class reductionist.

      The old free speech, New Deal and Great Society, civil rights supporting Democrats are gone and this is what has replaced them.

      If this politician is running a platform that could come a leftist party before the 1990s, she is a conservative leftist. It feels weird saying that, but if it is the truth, well…

  32. Willow

    > Are we in a countdown to all-out nuclear war?
    Can the West really afford letting Russia win? Once Ukraine military collapses Russia will have whole of Ukraine in play. Reputational impacts for West will be devastating. Especially for Biden heading into an election year. With added pressure of Gaza/Israel, risk of very poor decisions is huge. UK is determined for war with Russia and Europe seems to think it can play bureaucratic games with Russia without being thumped. Xi seemed very happy at APEC like a cat playing with mice. Blinken on the other hand seemed very agitated & unwell.

    1. Polar Socialist

      Afford Russia win what? Please, focus on the important things like Taiwan and the most moral army in the world.

      But not, like, too much.

    2. tegnost

      Blinken on the other hand seemed very agitated & unwell.

      don’t rule out a good cop/bad cop song and dance routine

  33. LawnDart

    Re; Gaza

    I don’t believe that “Greater Israel” saw mention, but it looks like things will become much, much worse over the next several weeks, with Israeli expansion becoming the primary factor: many in Israel feel that this current conflict presents a “now-or-never” opportunity:

    From Scratch: ‘Greater Israel’

    Greater Israel’ refers to the notion of expanding Israel’s territory and sovereignty to encompass what many Israelis describe as their historic Biblical land. For many, this includes the occupied Palestinian territories and the occupied Golan Heights.

    Moon of Alabama touches upon this as well:

    What are the borders of that Jewish nation?

    The borders of the homeland of the Jews are the Euphrates in the east and the Nile in the southwest. [This would include the territory of multiple Middle Eastern countries as well as the territory that Israel controls today.]

    Let’s add some Larry Johnson to the mix for additional religious overtones (the short and wonderful video embeded in the article is a must see!):


    I think the USA will become an direct participant in this conflict before Christmas, reasons include;

    A. It will make the hard-right very happy
    B. It will make MIC many, many billions more
    C. Because it is a way for the USA to hurt China

    As the Mideast goes up in flames, China’s economy will get burned.

    1. Polar Socialist

      I think most of Chinese energy still comes from coal. And of the rest, only about half from West Asia.

      That said, I wonder who ever thinks it would be a “good idea” to try to deny the world’s largest economy with world’s biggest army even partially of it’s energy needs?

  34. Lex

    I enjoyed the tape article. As someone who found Metallica via traded tapes in the 80’s and owned a huge collection of Grateful Dead shows on tape, it was pleasantly nostalgic. Given how hard it is for musicians to make any money, with merch and physical albums at shows being the main revenue, I’m all for people making and selling tapes.

    But it’s also just nostalgia. The ability for people to get their music heard (and record it for that matter) is better than ever. Nor is the mixtape dead. We just call it a playlist now. It may not be quite as “cool” but it is better in a lot of ways. Except the homemade sleeves and liner notes.

  35. Jon Cloke

    It occurs to me that the efforts to enforce the Russian oil price cap and the ‘intensifying’ hunt against ‘Russian oil sanction violators’ is increasingly like the War On Drugs (WOD).

    A massive amount of time, money and effort is being spent pointlessly trying to restrict an unrestrictable activity, and the attempt to control Russian oil just makes the trade massively profitable for intermediaries…

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