Links 3/9/2024

Coywolves Are Taking Over Eastern North America Smithsonian Magazine (Dr. Kevin)

Woolly mammoth de-extinction inches closer after elephant stem cell breakthrough Live Science (furzy)

‘Super Predator’: One Animal in Africa Instills Even More Fear Than Lions ScienceAlert (furzy)

Superconductivity scandal: the inside story of deception in a rising star’s physics lab Nature (Dr. Kevin)

Pentagon Report Unveils 50s-60s UFO Sightings as US Spy Planes, Not Aliens BNN (furzy)

ISS battery packs set to make a return to Earth later today The Register (Chuck L)

Study finds that we could lose science if publishers go bankrupt ars technica (Dr. Kevin)

The Lost Art of Leisure Living Philosophy (Micael T)



Invasive plant time bombs: A hidden ecological threat PhysOrg (Chuck L)

Big Oil faces a flood of climate lawsuits — and they’re moving closer to trial Grist

Xcel Energy says its facilities appeared to have role in igniting Texas wildfire MPR News (Chuck L)


Hong Kong launches world’s first wholesale CBDC pilot South China Morning Post (furzy)

China, Philippines at a sea fight breaking point Asia Times

Old Blighty

For years, I suspected MI5 interfered in the miners’ strike. The truth was even more shocking than I thought Guardian (Kevin W)

Homerton Fertility Centre’s licence suspended over ‘significant concerns’ BBC (Kevin W)

European Disunion

The EU’s new competition rules are going live — here’s how tech giants are responding The Verge. See also our post on Apple’s app store in the EU. Micael T: “I read nothing about Big Tech bankruptcy or shatter into millions little pieces spread in the market winds so just another piece of poor EU-legislation.”

Solidarity on our side of the pond:


Who to save Haiti? Gangs take over in America’s poorest nation France24 (furzy)


‘Operation Al-Aqsa Flood’ Day 154: Biden’s maritime aid corridor to Gaza slammed as ‘unrealistic’ Mondoweiss (guurst)

US says Gaza humanitarian aid pier could take 60 days to be built Financial Times

US will deploy 1,000 troops off Gaza shore in plan to build floating dock WSWS

* * *

Humanitarian aid airdrop kills five people and injures 10 in northern Gaza The Journal (BC)

5 people killed in Gaza as aid package parachute fails to deploy CBS (Tom H)

* * *

‘We are the masters of the house’: Israeli channels air snuff videos featuring systematic torture of Palestinians Mondoweiss

Case for Israeli sanctions even stronger, Green Party’s Martin says Green Party (BC)

* * *

Leaked Israel lobby presentation urges US officials to justify war on Gaza with ‘Hamas rape’ claims Grayzone (furzy)

The New York Times Ignores Intense Scrutiny Of Its Oct. 7 Report Defector (Dr. Kevin)

* * *

Israeli road splitting Gaza in two has reached the Mediterranean coast, satellite imagery shows CNN (furzy)

US-led coalition shoots down 15 Yemen rebel drones: CENTCOM Arab News. We are supposed to be impressed?

The United Kingdom: Zionism’s covert nerve center The Cradle (Micael T)

New Not-So-Cold War

Ukraine war and Western system’s fatal flaw Alex Krainer (Micael T)

PATRICK LAWRENCE: The Russians in Ukraine Consortium News (Chuck L)

Ukraine SitRep: The Slow Grind – New Bombs – Calling For Talks Moon of Alabama (Kevin W)

US Weighs Tapping Army Funds for Ukraine as Aid Bill Stalls Bloomberg (Li)

Russia requests UN Security Council meeting to discuss Macron’s threats to send troops to Ukraine Anadolu Agency

Zelenskyy taps ousted commander-in-chief as envoy to UK in ‘compromise’ move Politico (Kevin W). Note he was offered this post before when he was in his “refusing to quit” phase.

French arms companies to manufacture directly on Ukrainian soil, defence minister says France24 (furzy)


Azerbaijan Accuses France of Double Standards in South Caucasus Conflict Eurasianet

Big Brother is Watching You Watch

How Illegal Fishing Ships Hide Nautilus (Micael T)

Imperial Collapse Watch

Raytheon Lowers Flags To Half-Staff After Nikki Haley Drops Out Babylon Bee

More than 40% of Americans know someone who died from drug overdose, UK researcher finds University of Kentucky (Dr. Kevin)

Once proud public healthcare in the West is not what it used to be South China Morning Post South China Morning Post


Trump Posts $91.6 Million Bond for E. Jean Carroll Defamation Case New York Times (furzy)

Exclusive: Liz Cheney, January 6 Committee Suppressed Exonerating Evidence Of Trump’s Push For National Guard The Federalist


IMPEACHMENT: A Rapid Succession of Events Patrick Lawrence, Consortium News


No Labels Vows to Introduce Fresh Hell to 2024 Election New Republic (furzy)

Budget Brinksmanship

Internal Senate GOP earmark war renews shutdown threat The Hill

Police State Watch

A Subway Plan Aimed to Ease Fears. The Blowback Was Immediate. New York Times

Can We Just Throw In The Towel On Airport Security Theater Already? Jalopnik (Kevin W)

Our No Longer Free Press

Columbia’s New “Antisemitism Task Force” Won’t Say What It Thinks Antisemitism Is Intercept


The job applicants shut out by AI: ‘The interviewer sounded like Siri’ Guardian. Paul R: “Your dystopia is ready for you.”

My Robotic Doppelganger Is The Grim Face of Journalism’s Future! ForeverWars. Micael T: “Will the media employees that pose as journalists exit too?”

Falling Apart Boeing Airplanes

United Plane Veers Off Runway in Third Boeing Incident This Week Bloomberg

The Bezzle

Soul-searching by a soulless discipline Steve Keen (Micael T)

More SPAC Humor: Astra Space Gets Bought by its Founders & Executives after Investors Got Almost Totally Wiped Out Wolf Richter

Class Warfare

VIP Health System for Top US Officials Risked Jeopardizing Care for Soldiers KFF Health News

Antidote du jour (via):

See yesterday’s Links and Antidote du Jour here.

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  1. Antifa

    (melody borrowed from Last Train To Clarksville by The Monkees)

    Yet More Crapification!
    Algorithmic aggravation
    I’ve been holding since 9:30
    Tryna change a reservation
    Their end froze . . .
    The Muzak flows . . .
    Frustration grows . . .

    Hindi accents are so charming
    I catch one word out of ten
    I can either teach you English
    Or try dialing up again
    On hold once more . . .
    With Bangalore . . .
    Just like before . . .
    And I don’t think I can do this any more

    Yet More Crapification!
    Someone’s profit calculation
    Take the time to listen to my wishes
    My urge is strangulation
    Ahh this black hole . . .
    Will claim my soul . . .

    (musical interlude)

    Yet More Crapification!
    Punching numbers for a clone
    Can I please talk to a human being
    Not an AI drone
    Does this save dough?
    I’d love to know . . .
    Before I go . . .
    And start bouncing off the walls inside my home

    Oh! Ahhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhh!

    Yet More Crapification!
    Endless shoddy innovation
    Talk much slower Mr. Murthi
    Such an impotent sensation
    Three hours on hold . . .
    I have been rolled . . .
    I’ll have to fold . . .
    I am suffering from robo-script syndrome

    Yet More Crapification!

    Yet More Crapification!

    Yet More Crapification!

    Yet More Crapification!

  2. The Rev Kev

    ‘Wide Awake Media
    Spanish and French farmers block the border between Spain and France, in protest against the globalist war of farmers being waged by complicit governments around the word, as part of their commitments to Net Zero and Agenda 2030, which nobody voted for or consented to.’

    Ursula von der Leyen and the European Commission listened closely to the concerns of all these farmers in all the countries of the EU, thought about it all, and then a day or so ago announced that they were extending for another year tariff-free grain from the Ukraine with no duties or quotas on all that grain. Yes, if it goes ahead it will put out of work tens of thousands of EU farmers at the very least but this is seen as a plus as it improves the EU’s green footprint. Note that there is no truth to the rumour that the paper that this announcement came out on had a raised middle finger as a water mark-

    1. DJG, Reality Czar

      The Rev Kev: So the purpose of Ukraine now is so that Ursula van der Leyen and the European Commission can have a colony?

      1. The Rev Kev

        The Russians may have their own thoughts about the EU wanting to use the Ukraine as a colonial outpost.

      2. flora

        Me thinks Ursula et al are wholly owned subsidiaries of The City, Wall St, Cargill, Pioneer Hi-Bred, and etc. Shorter: Ursula takes orders from her masters. / ;)

      3. Kouros

        It seems they are using Ukraine as scabs to break the back of European farmers. Why shouldn’t all those CAP subsidies go to make weapons instead, eh?!

    2. Cristobal

      Ursula´s behavior reminds me of the line in one of the songs from My Fair Lady: ¨They will listen very nicely then go off and do precisely what they want.¨

      Though I have no independent knowledge, I have read that much of the imported grain and other products are produced by the non-Ukranian operators in the agricultural sector, be they multinational, private equity or what have you. In other words, European investors have an interest. This leads me to another question: the Ukranian government has borrowed billions of dollars to pursue this war. Who exactly is on the hook when the enterprise goes belly up? More European investors with a fiducary interest?

      1. Feral Finster

        Don’t you know, rich people deserve a bailout when their money-making schemes go pear-shaped? Peons have to “learn to live within their means!”

    3. Es s Ce tera

      There’s something super weird about farmers protesting rising costs in fancy (and very unnecessary toy) tractors costing $700k+.

      In any case, I have no idea what they’re protesting about exactly, and especially which environmental regulations they find offensive. What sustainable farming practices are they objecting to, exactly? Using the appropriate crops? Crop diversity? More effective use of water? Measures to improve productivity with less? It comes across like they’re opposed to environmentalism in general? Are they denying climate change?

      I want to be sympathetic, I know they’ve been gouged every which way, but…I’m sorry to say from where I sit if they’re opposed to sustainability and don’t believe in climate change then they’re only discrediting themselves. Who’s going to consider their demands reasonable? Oh yeah, let’s just forget about the environment altogether, great approach.

      1. Wukchumni

        I’m more used to tractor pulls in the USA, where you can buy deep fried edibles as you watch farm implements doing their thing.

      2. Vicky Cookies

        They’re a bit… volkish to compare favorably with the Gilets Jaunes, who had a point about the impact of legislation aimed at mitigating climate change disproportionately hitting poor and working people. The petit bourgeoisie are squeezed by the haute bourgeoisie; it’s in the nature of the system. Right wing critiques of that system, clamoring about ‘climate communism’ speak to the class character of the movements they come from.

      3. Objective Ace

        I think the fact that it’s so difficult to find out exactly what the proposed “sustainable practices” are is telling. If they were simple and straightforward (and actually beneficial from an environmental prospective) that would be reported. Instead, this is about increased state control of the food system being branded in a manner that makes it more palatable to the masses.

        1. Bill Williams

          I see that but also the opposite side. The farmers are protesting because they want state involvement. They are not seeking liberty for the general citizen but some kind of authority to confirm that they way of living is ”good” and it will be protested. This protection of authority is oppose another form of authority which they perceive not to come from a government but from environment activists (communists). These activists have no idea what farming is about because they live in the city.

      4. Henry Moon Pie

        I’d agree with Es s Ce tera and Vicky Cookies that these protests appear to me to represent Big Ag and their “Big Local Operators” tag alongs. At the same time, the EU bureaucrats stupidly issued their regs from on high without taking to the people in the business.

        Even stupid regs are likely to help the small, organic farmers who are trying to show the way. A better policy would be to take the land away from Big Ag and foreign owners like Gates and give it to new, young farmers who’ve received training in how to farm not to maximize profit but to do things in a way that benefits rather than harms the local ecology and human beings. Current practices of Big Ag and Big Operators is poisoning all of us even if we don’t live around farms.

        1. bum

          I patiently await my expropriated land parcel to build my permaculture commune on. I think Zapata had something to say about this

          1. Henry Moon Pie

            I don’t expect any of the policies I would prefer to be enacted by either USA or EU elites. After their efforts to centralize power lead to the inevitable result, those with a Zapata sort of inclination will have to take matters in their own hands so that food can be grown after those $80,000 tractors run out of fuel and the nitrogen and phosphorus Big Ag and Big Operators depend on to grow a crop is no longer available.

        2. BillS

          If I understand correctly, “the stupid regs” is one of the things they are protesting. Small operators are crushed by the bureaucracy that large operators can handle by hiring PMC advisors who navigate the paper labyrinth. Many European farmers are still working on farms handed down through the generations and it is on them that fall the worst of the EU mandated changes.

          That said, things need to change to improve nitrogen runoff, pesticide residues, for example. However small farmers see the environmental regs as a cudgel to force them off their land and a means to consolidate operations under large multinational corporations.

      5. magpie

        Farmers don’t walk onto a dealership and choose the LX model because they’re so wealthy from farming. The majority of farmers have to finance their vehicles. But maybe they shouldn’t buy new? Ok, stay with the old tractor. Maybe we can tell them what colour to pick, too.

        If you have no idea what they’re protesting about, might you look into it?

        You might find the same thing that will confront you one day: when insipid, malevolent, ignorant bureaucrats will decide some part of your life or career needs to be taken from you. They may use some unfalsifiable platitude about environmentalism, or public health, or public safety to justify it, but it will be coercion.

        It is a dismal straw man to suggest they have to accept neoliberal authoritarianism or else they’re forgetting about the environment.

        You list a variety of conservation measures. Do you know how many of these the farmers might actually support? How would you know, if you don’t even know what they’re protesting about “exactly”?

        1. Amfortas the Hippie

          i’m in agreement with your take….;altho its been many years since i looked into the state of european agriculture.
          back when, they werent nearly as Big Agged and enserfed as the USA is…many more independent, smallish to medium operators…lots of coops.
          they also had ready access to markets back then…and not with a handful of giant gatekeepers in the way.
          all that may have changed, idk.
          that said…people who make their living growing stuff are, in my experience, more in tune and concerned about the health of the “environment” than yer average duck.
          they just use different words…and, a caveat, since the “green revolution”(Ie:”better living through chemicals”, they’ve had “experts” and various important people insisting that the latest chemical soup is not only essential to doing bidness…but really not all that bad for the frogs and such.
          its insidious.
          here, only 2 years ago, i was frustrated about the now 20 year ongoing catastrophe of herbicidal manure(persistent herbicides that make the abundant cowshit unusable for compost). in a fit of pique, i rang up the local ag extension agent…who is paid for by my taxes.
          and complained.
          he scoffed and belittled(such that i then rang the county judge and helped get him run off,lol)…and insisted that such poisons are benign….local ag people tell me that whomever is in that chair is the one pushing the latest poison onto them…suggesting(passive agressively, essentially) whatever dowpnt has cooked up.
          and this is a public employee.
          what seems to be at issue with the european farmers is the same thing that usaian farmers are generally upset about: so called “unfunded mandates”…wherein the epa or whatever requires some expensive method or product or process…often to please some group of loud college kids somewhere…but more often to please the likes of cargill and dowpont….and which the farmers themselves must pay for out of their already minimal profits.
          remember, too, the priceing and payment system is geared towards the middle men…not to the actual producers.
          i know that here, parity pricing in ag has gone away essentially, in inverse proportion to the rise of the neoliberal dispensation.
          so while it may cost x$ to produce a bushel of corn or a peck of peppers, the farmer gets “what the market will bear”…regardless of what it cost him/her to produce it.
          to my knowledge, this is the only “industry” where this crazy formulation exists…and its at the root of all the numerous and perennial farm crises.
          as for the giant tractors…the way commodity ag has evolved(sic–been engineered), that kind of scale is what they’ve been taught is necessary for generations.
          and farm equipment is just about as extortionary as anything else in ag.
          ie: that tractor doesnt really need to cost so much at the consumer end…but in collusion with the FIRE Economy thats eaten the world, its what they can get away with.
          with a mere…what 2% of the population(in the usa, at least) involved with ag…its no wonder that the genpop has no understanding of all these things.
          before pooh-poohing the complaints, one should at least attempt to walk the rows and try to understand the farmers’ perspective in all this.
          its like texas republicans kvetching about “high paid teachers”.

          1. GF

            Hey Amfortas, will the bar be open for the coming total solar eclipse which will pass right over your area of TX?

          2. magpie

            Exactly. Especially about unfunded mandates, middlemen and extortion, but honestly all of what you wrote is so much more coherent than sneering at the revolting kulaks.

        2. Fiery Hunt

          Damn those who think the generations of farmers don’t take better care of the EARTH than frickin “experts” without a spec of dirt under their nails.

      6. Cristobal

        reply to Es s Ce tera and others,

        Their complaint is about the prices they receive for their products. They often get less for their products than the cost of production. They are being forced out of business and have to sell out to the investors, who really don´t care about sustainability. To cut to the chase, farm policy in the US and EU is and always has been about cheap food. Even prior to the concern about the environment, the EU had developed a bewildering bureaucracy that farmers have to navigate every year. I don´t think those in the US appreciate how controlled the agricultural sector is in the EU. These rules and regulations change frequently. To produce crops in a sustainable fashion costs more than than to just plow up everything and let ´er rip with the herbacides and insectacides. Farmers in the EU have been faced for years with imports (¨free trade¨) from countries without such rules. Of course they are cheaper. Import controls are not being applied to protect the EU farm sector from this. The reason is to drive down farm prices. If that were not enough, it is well documented that both in the US and EU the market for both ag products and ag inputs is monopolized by a few giants. As is natural, they use their market power to raise prices in stores, and depress prices from the farm. That is another reason for the huge difference between what the farmers are paid, and what people have to pay in the grocery stores. Most of the farmers (real farmers, not investors) I know are in favor of sustainable farming practices, but we have to live with the fact that it costs more. Pursuit of the so-called ¨green agenda¨ should not and cannot be done on the backs of the farmers. They have every reason to be pissed off. The people who set these policies are PMC puro y duro. They have never had cow shit on their boots or worried about when it might rain next.

      7. Val

        Of course farming is the problem. The sustainability of constant war cannot be questioned, it is in the nature of the operation: To sustain constant war while pretending to care about life on Earth.

        So dear farmers, we really do want to be sympathetic but if you refuse our unexamined narratives and self-fertilizing articles of faith, we will ironically detach while an unelected and capricious bureaucracy destroys your livelihood.

        Thus you should provide us with a nice, reasonably priced lunch and make no complaint about market rigging. Think of the war.

        Also, your tractor is too small, but if it was bigger, likewise it would be too big.
        Go forth and virtue signal, like the hemp sower!
        But hurry up as we are peckish, cranky and hypoglycemic.

        If only climate change psychological type specimens were as dynamic as the sacred Earth herself, I would have some use for this comically large butterfly net and matching jumbo pith helmet.

      8. Ignacio

        To tell the truth it is very difficult to name a single reason because each agricultural region faces different problems. A very general cause is the increase in diesel and fertilizer costs both important agricultural inputs. Then there are other measures such as reducing cultured land, reducing fertilizer usage (so reducing agricultural output). I think this effects different types of production in different ways. Small farmers for instance may have more problems with these measures. One needs to spend a lot of time on the socioeconomics of agricultural activities, which are very diverse, only to understand how little one knows about it. A problem, as I see it is the way governance is played in the EU. They do it the easy way for them: they set “targets”: 4% reduction on this, 10% reduction on that and, unsurprisingly, many can’t cope with those changes.

        But to tell the truth I am very far from knowledgeable on this issue. I knew more when I worked in plant virus research because I had opportunities to talk with farmers.

        1. CA

          “To tell the truth it is very difficult to name a single reason because each agricultural region faces different problems…”

          Really fine comment, and reflects just the narrow, tailored efforts that are necessary for effective agriculture policy.

        2. Late Introvert

          It is local. Here in the great State of Iowa the farmers use way too many chemical inputs because it pays so well. I’ll need to find a link but estimates show that for every $1 in fertilizer/pesticide they invest it returns $2/3, even if it’s not needed.

          And they refuse to let anyone test it. In fact state house Republicans defunded the sensors on all the rivers last session.

    4. spud

      its only a matter of time that the free traders running the E.U. say its the farmers fault, they did not learn how to code.

    5. Pookah Harvey

      CEO of Wide Awake Media is Jarrod Fidden who hails from a family of ‘captains of industry’ – his father a Director of Kellogg’s (Australia) and grandfather Managing Director of RCA (Australia).
      “protest against the globalist war of farmers being waged by complicit governments around the word, as part of their commitments to Net Zero and Agenda 2030, which nobody voted for or consented to.”
      So what is in this UN Agenda 2030 that seeks to destroy small farmers?

      2.3 By 2030, double the agricultural productivity and incomes of small scale food producers, in particular women, indigenous peoples, family farmers, pastoralists and fishers, including through secure and equal access to land and other productive resources and inputs, knowledge, financial services, markets and opportunities for value addition and non-farm employment.

      2.5 By 2020, maintain the genetic diversity of seeds, cultivated plants, and farmed and domestic animals and their related wild species including through soundly managed and diversified seed and plant banks at the national, regional and international levels, and promote access to and fair and equitable sharing of benefits arising from the utilization of genetic resources and associated traditional knowledge as internationally agreed.

      2.b Correct and prevent trade restrictions and distortions in world agricultural markets, including through the parallel elimination of all forms of agricultural export subsidies and all export measures with equivalent effect in accordance with the mandate with the Doha Development Round.

      Are these the sections that the family farmers are upset about?

      1. Cristobal

        Re Pookah
        All that sounds real Hunky Dory. How? Happy happy joy joy words with policies that archive the opposite. As if wishing could make It so. This is the stupidity that those PMC clowns think is useful. Lets see them put their money where their mouth is.

        1. Belle

          The main policies I see are EU sanctions on Russian gas and Russian fertilizers,and opening the floodgates to foodstuffs from Kiev, now even cheaper after their slashing workers’ rights.

        2. Pookah Harvey

          I was trying to point out that the oligarchs are trying to hijack protests to guide them against UN programs that are not in those oligarchs interests. The EU has not implemented, in any significant way, any of the guidelines that Agenda 2030 has set out as far as I can tell
          Whether it is not patenting genomes, addressing climate change, implementing sustainable agriculture or anything ese that would make for a better world the oligarchy want to make sure that the UN can not have any significant impact.

      2. Darthbobber

        I’ve seen nothing in the farmer’s demands that reference the UN document at all.
        Wide Awake Media is just about narrative spinning. They WANT the protests to be seen as about their sponsor’s policy agenda.

        I don’t think that even their protests against EU regs are about climate change measures in the abstract, but about the implementation and the fact that they’re to bear the full cost when their backs are already to the wall.

        BTW, I notice that your cites from agenda 2030 seem to be non-essential.
        (2.3, 2.5, 2b) Are these a representative sample or is there a specific reason for singling out only them?

      3. Valerie in Australia


        After watching what has happened to the family farm in the U.S. over the past four decades, we know we can trust the government to maintain the genetic diversity of seeds, provide access to and fair and equitable sharing of benefits, prevent trade restrictions and distortions, and double the incomes of small scale producers.

        Seems to me, these farmers aren’t gullible and dumb. They know when they are being conned.

        Everyone I know in Europe supports the farmers.

        1. clarky90

          Not to worry Valerie! When we all start to die, in the West, because of “no food, water or medicines”, the USA can be relied on, to build a pier, to deliver food and supplies! It only takes 60 days. Surely, we can all wait that long? … merely a couple of months…..

          …just a couple of months……?

          After the pier is finally built…… we will just wait patiently, for a boat to finally, …… come in…. and unload onto that empty, waiting, magik pier

          Unfortunately, bureaucratic complexities …. (they are trying as hard as they can)

          Oh, what is that I see, on the far horizon? Could it be a relief ship…?

          No, unfortunately, it’s just another Navy destroyer keeping us safe, patrolling against terrorists.

  3. Hickory

    I believe this post gets it backwards:

    It says the media air torture reports because the public demands it. I believe The Israeli public is being trained for sadism by leadership that wants public support for sadistic activities. The people who control Israeli media choose what to air or not. The government chooses what stories to propagate and what to hold back.

    The hate generation is real, but hate doesn’t spontaneously arise in random people. It’s intentionally spread by those with the most influence. The fact that so many Israelis buy it is disappointing.

    1. DJG, Reality Czar

      Hickory and Yves Smith: Yes, the point of torture is to torture. The purpose of torture is to sow fear. Torture is always dressed up as law enforcement so that the people who love order will go along.

      Acquiescing to torture destroys a society. We see how much the years of torture under the military regime have undermined Argentina, which is hardly a functioning society. We see how much acquiescence by Americans in Abu Ghraib, the many unnamed sites in Afghanistan, the “black sites” in Lithuania, Guantanamo, and Homan Square in Chicago have undermined the U S of A.

      Torture is almost too easy. The Israelis (and the U.S. government) have taken the easy, immoral route. They have sown the wind. Expect Israel’s famous “democracy” to degenerate even further, and quickly.

      1. The Rev Kev

        After WW2 the US put Japanese officers on trial for torture which included water boarding. Everybody knew that torture was not only wrong but that if you were using to get information from a person, that they would make up all sorts of stories to make the pain stop. But then George Bush came along and not only relabeled it as ‘enhanced interrogation’ but normalized it in American society. It was a macho thing to do and was featured enough in that TV series “24 Hours” that US military officers asked the producer to knock it off as torture did not really work but the producer ignored them as he knew torture really did work. Mind you it made a great recruitment tool for Jihadists and who knows how many American soldiers were killed in revenge for all that torture. I really do think that John Yoo should be in a federal prison for all the harm he did with his torture memos instead of a Trump appointment to the National Board for Education Sciences (for his work on the Unitary executive theory he should be just shot). That is the thing about torture. When you do it it corrupts everything that it touches, including the legal system.

        1. vao

          But then George Bush came along and not only relabeled it as ‘enhanced interrogation’ but normalized it in American society.

          For that matter, Germans called it “verschärfte Vernehmung” — literally “sharpened”, or “stepped-up interrogation” in nazi times.

          The French used the verb “triturer” (triturate) instead of “torturer” (torture) during the war in Algeria.

          And the Portuguese during the Salazar dictatorship used the term “interrogatório contínuo” (continuous interrogation) to designate all forms of torture by exhaustion (sleep deprivation, strenuous physical positions, strict isolation, sensory deprivation, etc).

        2. CA

          Avoid War Crimes

          To the Editor:

          In ”A Burden Too Heavy to Put Down,” * David Brooks writes, ”Inevitably, there will be atrocities” committed by our forces in Iraq. Did he forget to add that they must be prosecuted?

          War crimes are indeed more likely if influential commentators foreshadow impunity for perpetrators of the ”brutal measures our own troops will have to adopt.”

          The choice is not between committing war crimes and retreating ”into the paradise of our own innocence.” A third option is for the United States to strive to avoid complicity.

          It is untrue that ”we have to take morally hazardous action.” Those who choose it, or urge others to, cannot evade or distribute responsibility by asserting that ”we live in a fallen world.”


          BEN KIERNAN
          New Haven, Nov. 4, 2003
          The writer is director of the Genocide Studies Program at Yale University.

          1. undercurrent

            Remember that it was The Gifted One, Barack Obama, who refused to conduct any investigation of the Bush regime for the war on Iraq. The Gifted One opted instead to look forward, and not backward, because of his, well, cool magnanimity, and his easy compliance with the practice of denying responsibility for any allegations of criminal behavior on the part of American politicians. The law is just something for other people, maybe for those reprobate young men who wore their pants way down below their waist; The Gifted One reserved his wrath for them, and not the connected and cultured crowd that he would certainly infiltrate in the future.
            Obama’s indifference to any investigation concerning the Bush Administration’s decision to invade Iraq, and to incur any kind of responsibility for that war, has helped to grease the way for biden’s genocide in Gaza.

        3. Eclair

          I remember reading, probably in Life magazine, about the treatment of US POW’s during the Korean War (1950-53.) There was much horror expressed about Korean use of ‘brainwashing’ techniques, which resulted in some of the POW’s actually stating that the US was doing some bad things during the war. Point being, that the Koreans were barbaric and that the US would never ever use such methods. I believed that until Abu Ghraib.

          1. Em

            Read up on Jeffrey Kaye’s coverage on the Korean War. The torture story was largely about covering up actual revelations that Americans were using biological warfare (much of the methodologies derived from the infamous Japanese Unit 731) against the Koreans and the Chinese.

            1. britzklieg

              This… the US war crimes against Korea is perhaps the greatest cover-up of deliberate atrocities ever to go unreported.

          2. Alice X

            Who to believe? The Empire or your lying eyes?

            From LeMonde Diplomatique, July 1999

            US COLD WAR SECRETS – First victims of biological warfare

            The United States and Britain continue to bomb Iraq on the grounds that Saddam Hussein has a hidden programme of chemical and biological arms. One of the declared objectives of Washington’s foreign policy is to combat the proliferation of weapons of mass destruction. Recently declassified archives now reveal, however, that the US was the first country to incorporate biological warfare into its military doctrine. And there are indications that it was used, at least on an experimental basis, during the Korean war.

            by Stephen Endicott & Edward Hagerman

            “I went to China in 1952 wanting to assess the assertions of germ warfare… I came away convinced that Chinese officials believed that the evidence was conclusive. On returning, Alan Watt, my successor as permanent head of the Australian Department of External Affairs, informed me that in the light of my public statements he had sought a response from Washington and was informed that the United States had used biological weapons during the Korean war, but only for experimental purposes.” So wrote Dr John Burton, former permanent head of the Australian Department of External Affairs, in a letter to Stephen Endicott on 12 April 1997.

            The Endicott/Hagerman book, November 22, 1998:

            The United States and Biological Warfare: Secrets from the Early Cold War and Korea

            The Ed Regis NYT review (and debunking?):

            Wartime Lies? – June 27, 1999

            Therein is a link to the first chapter of the Endicott/Hagerman work.

        4. spud

          i have to keep reminding people, and i am not carrying water for bush. but it was not bush that unleashed the torture monster in america, it was bill clinton.

          and its why the torturers cannot be brought up for trail. they will all point to bill clinton making it legal, and the democrats would never allow that.

          10 Reasons Bill Clinton Was Secretly A Terrible President there are more of course, just about every problem america and the world are facing this dim wit either created them, or compounded them.

          The financial crash of 2008 was the result of so many complex, compounding factors that people still can’t agree on who, if anyone, was responsible. However, there’s one name that keeps cropping up again and again: Bill Clinton

          bill clinton has expressed regret over free trade, the lack of tariffs he admits, has starved and impoverished millions, to late now, the world is in flames due to free trade

          bill clinton was the god father of american torturers, thats why bush and cheney go free

          ““Extraordinary rendition” is when shady government operatives stuff a bag over your head and fly you off to some foreign country where they can legally torture you. It sounds like something Alex Jones might dream up in a paranoid frenzy, but it’s a well-documented phenomenon under both Bush, Jr. and Obama—and Bill Clinton was the guy who started it all.

          Clinton and Gore signed off on the first rendition back in the ’90s, despite being aware that it breached international law. Until recently, rendered people frequently wound up in the prison cells of places like Mubarak’s Egypt or Gaddafi’s Libya, where they were tortured with electric shocks, rape, beatings, and even crucifixion. It can sometimes go hideously wrong: In 2003, the CIA snatched a terrorist off the streets and beat, tortured, and sodomized him, only to discover they’d accidentally grabbed the wrong man. The victim just happened to share a name with a wanted criminal. His suffering came care of the Clinton/Gore dream team.”

          1. britzklieg

            Once again, your historically factual explanations of why Bill Clinton (and Clintonism) is at the center of destroying what remained of “our democracy” after Nixon, Carter and Reagan’s neoliberal/neocon agenda, is spot on. How he got away with being considered one of the good guys is a miracle of MSM propaganda. Bill and Hillary make the British ghouls Burke and Hare seem quaint.

            Keep ’em coming, spud!

            1. Pat

              Speaking of tripping over things repeatedly in a short period, this is the fourth time I have heard or seen a reference to Burke and Hare in the last two days. Wild.

          2. Reply

            Nixon would not have been the only one to have said the following:

            If the President does it, then it is not illegal.

            David Frost heard that during a Frost / Nixon interview.

            How many others heard variations in the Oval Office, at Camp David, on Airforce One or elsewhere? And how many overheard loose talk in unsecure locations or on tapped media?

          3. Pat

            Timely reminder of one of the more ignored reasons why Bill Clinton was one of the worst Presidents in our history. Especially since it is impossible to escape Bill and his worse half these days. They seem to be everywhere.
            One reason could be that Biden needs as many surrogates as he can get. But I don’t buy it for a moment, they aren’t that civic minded.
            Remaining relevant, keeping HRC in the conversation, or just finding other ways to grift, they never do anything out of the goodness of their black black hearts.

          4. cousinAdam

            My modestly brilliant mom would from time to time drop little crumbs of wisdom and leave it to me to try and connect the dots. Once, in showing that sax-tooting Bill was “no dummy”, she pointed out that he was a Rhodes Scholar which meant (for starters) semesters of “finishing school” at Britain’s finest. She left it to me to eventually realize that this compelled membership in a very exclusive club which had a ‘pledge of allegiance’ to the interests of the Crown where it’s understood that the ends (at times) justify the means. This goes a bit beyond “It’s the economy, Stupid!” Slick Willy indeed.

        5. Don

          Torture is about hurting people, dehumanizing them, injuring, killing, rape — little or nothing to do with obtaining intelligence, it is entertainment, blood in the sand, revenge, abuse, blood sport, it will not disturb the dreams of the media people in the videos whose fingers and teeth are dripping with vicarious blood…

        1. Alice X

          From Caitlin Johnstone:

          Israel Accused Of Torturing UN Workers To Obtain False Testimony About UNRWA

          …This is another one of those stories about Israeli offenses that are so stunning that at first you can mistakenly believe you must not be reading it correctly — especially since the western political-media class haven’t been treating it like the jarring news that it is. If we had anything remotely like an objective news media in the western world, reports that Israel tortured United Nations staff to get them to make false statements against a UN aid agency would be the top story everywhere for days.

          1. Jabura Basaidai

            Caitlin is a warrior – she’s written some poetry that i like – here’s one i wrote during the ‘enhanced interrogation’ period – hope it fits in this thread –


            Something childish when rapacity infects
            the passionate, clear-minded individual,
            A certain cruel futility stands unveiled
            in levity and suffering, a carelessness
            of common decencies and the false
            meaning of unenlightened zeal
            hidden in hasty ferocity
            of procedure.

            History never lost the innate ability to
            inflict a mental and bodily anguish
            upon humans and other creatures,
            A trap of an aptitude, a complex
            web of passion evolving in a
            refinement of ingenuity
            where violence was
            a necessity.

            Character of torture not primeval but
            an insidious stroke, audacious in reflection,
            Mediated by revenge and greed. A gruesome genius
            that overmasters reasoning facilities becoming too practical.
            Soon the ability becomes a reflection of a dull surfeited look of
            a gluttonous person after a heavy meal. A person becomes in time
            the ideal conception of their disgrace, a slave to their own fetters of a
            rationalized history that follows forever like a shadow on a clear sunny day.
            A frothy drought of character responsibility with a hungry hellhound on the trail
            of this demeaning phenomenon.
            It remains a thundercloud
            that passes over the sun
            raining insane logic
            Upon the mind

      2. Cristobal

        It can´t happen soon enough. It has gotten to the point that my desire for vengence to be inflicted on ¨the baddies¨ in Israel, which group seems to be getting broader every day, nearly outweighs my compassion for the people in Gaza. A ceasefire will not bring any kind of justice after all the suffering the Palestinians have endured, but things will revert to the way they were in a year or so. I fear we need a Final Solution, but not the one Netanyahoo is thinking about.

        1. Em

          Yes, I want every one of these bastards, down to the lowliest Hasbaraist on Telegram and Twitter, identified and sued into to bankruptcy and forever branded as Zionist genociders.

          Bari Weiss’s assets and future earnings (as a Cargill Kosher butcher) should be completely confiscated to send Refaat Alareer’s kids through grad school and provide his widow with a nice oceanfront home where she can watch the sunsets in tranquility and security.

        2. Dessa

          I hate the Zios and wish them the very worst, but calling for a capitalized “Final Solution” ain’t the move. There’s no need to summon Nazi rhetoric here. That phrase refers specifically to Jewish people, of which Zios are only a subset, and I should hope that we aren’t openly expressing hate for all Jews

      3. Feral Finster

        “Acquiescing to torture destroys a society. We see how much the years of torture under the military regime have undermined Argentina, which is hardly a functioning society.”

        The rulers don’t care.

        1. Em

          Serious question. Do you have any suggestions other than “surrender to our evil rulers because no positive change is possible”? Do you derive great joy in repeating that 200 times a day?

          1. Feral Finster

            Don’t argue with points I didn’t make. I am simply trying to describe reality as I see it, not as I wish it were. That also means that easy answers are not always forthcoming.

      4. Es s Ce tera

        Watching the prison video was quite strange. It was obvious these Israeli guards were terrified, their hearts racing, their eyes wide.

        They needed to pump themselves up with a pep talk, a morale booster, before going in.

        They needed something like 30 masked guards and a dog just to do a cell by cell headcount of small groups of six men chained to each other and their bunks slave ship style.

        They were opening those cell doors like it was going to be the last thing they’d do on earth, like the whole place was gonna blow.

        They were shaking, on edge, jumpy, these were not calm people.

        They needed morale music during.

        This was genuine cowardice, terror, fear. Is the rest of the IDF like that? Is the rest of the Israeli population like that? If so, this does not bode well for Israel. If I were a general I wouldn’t put these people in play, they’re not combat ready, would be exploring my options.

        I think I’ve decided they’re not going to invade Lebanon after all.

        1. Lena

          Perhaps the Haredim could be recruited to carry out torture. Even though they lack military training, they have shown themselves to be quite capable of sadistic violent acts. Not happy to confine themselves to mere spitting on Christians, they are more than willing to openly go after secular Jews – beating women, knifing people, etc. These are some vile religious extremists who, though their name (hared) means “to tremble’, would not shake when given the opportunity to torture Palestinians.

        2. Dessa

          Torture extracts its toll on the torturer too. Not that I think we need to bring out the violins for torturers, but it does explain why they’re so wired. They’re about to go and supress their humanity for however many hours to ignore the screams and tears, then go home to their families and try to live normal lives. It fucks them up and they know that going in. Many will develop PTSD.

          In have little sympathy for them — Torture is THE worst sin in my book — but it makes sense that they’re all fucked up after months of this

  4. The Rev Kev

    “US-led coalition shoots down 15 Yemen rebel drones: CENTCOM”

    Pfffft. That’s nothing. Yesterday Russia shot down 47 Ukrainian fixed-wing drones. ‘The ministry said one UAV was shot down over Belgorod Region, two over Kursk Region, three over Volgograd Region, and 41 over Rostov Region.’ The major difference between the Yemeni drones and Ukrainian drones here is that the Yemeni drones are not guided by the NATO satellite networks-

    1. ChrisFromGA

      Anyone else notice that operation “prosperity guardian “ is now yet another open ended US military commitment with no end date and lacking an achievable goal?

      Keep the spice flowing so that Chucky the Consumer can stay on the couch just doesn’t seem smart, measurable, achievable, realistic or time boxed.

      1. eg

        And it’s not like the operation is working either. It’s a sort of performance, the point of which isn’t clear beyond, “well, we have to be seen to be doing something, don’t we?”

        And diplomacy is never the “something.”

  5. DJG, Reality Czar

    Jalopnik: Ending security kayfabe at airports.

    The problem is what is the purpose of screening? What kind of suspects stand out to a human screener? What is just junk? >> The mini-bottle rule, for one. Then the take-off-shoes ritual.

    Years back, there were many articles about how human screeners at airports were good at detecting who is louche. Those were also the days when people would question in-coming passengers. Lufthansa sometimes questioned passengers at the gate before boarding.

    Then the assembly line came in.

    Just as grocery stores have noticed some, errrr, problems with self-checkout, so TSA, a department searching for some meaning for its existence, is going to have some self-checkin problems. How do they plan to deal with people gaming the system? I doubt that TSA has a clue.

    The long and short of it is that no one seems to know what airport security even means anymore. It has degenerated into bothering passengers.

    1. Benny Profane

      This will revert back to everyone in the same line when there is an incident involving a knife or even a gun on a flight. Especially a flight out of Vegas Vegas! Good Lord. Of all places to start this experiment.

    2. ambrit

      Many on the Crypto-conservative end of the internets contend that the TSA, and now the deployment of the Federal Police, er, National Guard, to the New York City subways is a means of normalizing the Surveillance State.
      Counterintuitively, all the Security Theatre is meant not to make the public feel safer, but to make people feel fearful in public. Frightened people will abandon rights and freedoms of all sorts in pursuit of that ever elusive “Freedom and Safety.”
      It’s all a classic “Big Lie.”

      1. Eclair

        And the ‘surveillance state’ has come to where you live.
        Our 1960’s era small condo building (four levels) is having an elevator rebuild. My husband was talking to the work crew this week (they have finished the heavy work and are now doing the electrical stuff) and they told him that the new elevator will have a camera, monitored 24/7 by a private firm on the ‘east coast.’ It’s a safely feature, they assured him, so that in case of a resident getting stuck, they can be rescued immediately. Creepy, I call it. More reason to take the stairs.

        1. ambrit

          Since this is an elevator, an artificial form of transportation, vertically rather than horizontally, does it fall under the aegis of the Transportation Security Administration? That will be an interesting legal quibble. Expect it to be litigated eventually.

        2. Alice X

          A simple help button/alarm would make more practical sense, and be cheaper, unless there is a darker motive, which is easy to imagine.

          1. Bsn

            If I lived there I’d be tempted to hit that “help” button every day. I needed help because I broke an eyelash upon entering”. Or, with the new camera, get in the elevator every day, masked, hoodied, etc. and black spray paint the lens. After a week or so, they’ll have to hire a “security” person to search every entrant. That’ll save them money :-)

            1. Eclair

              Eclair piously folds her hands and raises her eyes towards heaven. How can you possibly think of such dastardly actions, Bsn!

            2. Alice X

              I have only broken an eyelash looking to heaven. A heavenly eyelash the desert of which is shared equally by plenary humanity.

  6. The Rev Kev

    “Exclusive: Liz Cheney, January 6 Committee Suppressed Exonerating Evidence Of Trump’s Push For National Guard”

    Sounds like Liz Cheney had better start preparing her testimony, she’s got some ‘splainin’ to do. Of course this only goes to confirm to Republicans that the January 6 Committee was just a witch hunt to bring Trump and them into disrepute. If Trump gets in there may be another January 6 Committee but one that will actually get the truth of what happened that day. Whatever number of national Guardsmen that Trump requested, I do not think that they arrived until about five in the afternoon when it was all over. Nobody can explain why they were deliberately held back as were Washington’s Metropolitan Police Department and the media certainly did not really follow up on this dog that did not bark.

      1. Reply

        In the evidence locker next to Hunter’s laptop and many video and audio tapes.
        Monitored by Top Men.

        1/2 /s

    1. Henry Moon Pie

      I think the Democrats who resisted having the Guard were uncertain which way they might break if push came to shove.

    1. jo6pac

      They’re being gentle because it just being moved to the Nazi friendly part of the canadian govt.

  7. griffen

    Dr. Malcolm to the courtesy phone please, Dr. Malcolm this appears to be an urgent situation. You see these mammoths aren’t playing nice or friendly after all…\sarc

    De-extinction company…is really a thing I guess. Colossal Biosciences. Probably a parent company that spouts a newer company by 2040 to run the fictional “Island” from the film version.

  8. Steve H.

    > Soul-searching by a soulless discipline Steve Keen

    >> “I remember my friend Johnny von Neumann used to say, with four parameters I can fit an elephant, and with five I can make him wiggle his trunk.”
    >> With Ireland’s model’s 14 parameters, and four types of exogenous shocks

    A similar argument is why I never dove into string theory. Give me eleven dimensions and I’ll make the model dance the Watusi.

    For any interested, here’s

    > An equation of state unifies diversity, productivity, abundance and biomass

    I can’t say I fully buy it, but I am finding the model useful.

    Malthus spoke to the geometric (exponential) growth of population, Ne^(rt). Verhulst noted ‘The growth of the population necessarily has a limit, if only in the extent of land indispensible for the housing of that population.’ He framed the equation as the percentage of growth to that limit being inhibited by the nearness to the boundary:
    : p(1-p).
    The Verhulst equation shows how increasing the growth rate can lead to chaos.

    Pandit et al have an equation for the generation of classes, once stores of resources can be guarded, which can be framed as:
    : p (1-p)^n.
    n starts at rank=1, where Topchimp takes his share of the booty, then n=2, and etc on down the line. They advance the equation from the particular to the general, showing how classes can form as long as the powerful take bigger bites and half the population gets not much.

    Anyhoo, seems relevant for macroeconomics as well.

  9. VTDigger

    RE: Boeing

    This is a United issue not a Boeing issue. Shocking to have that many serious maintenance issues in a few months time. Would definitely never fly United again.
    Stay away people!

    1. timbers

      The taxpayer subsidized stock buybacks are working.
      “U.S. Airlines Spent 96% of Free Cash Flow on Buybacks” pervious 10 yrs – Bloomberg 2020.

      “Take a look at defense stocks” – Nancy Pelosi

      1. flora

        Neoliberal economics raiding the public treasury for private gain? Again? Who’d a thunk it. / ;)

    2. Stephen V

      And to think I’ve been flying United to avoid AMERICAN. Damm. Trapped by crappification in flyover country.

  10. Wukchumni

    The Lost Art of Leisure Living Philosophy

    We begrudgingly take a break a week or 2 a year if you’re a working stiff in these not so united states, and a good many feel guilty taking that much time off, what if somebody was looking?

    Those that go on vacation tend to have truncated ones that never allow them to settle their minds away from work, its what we do.

    True leisure for yours truly involves the outdoors and specifically the wilderness where the only connectivity is time tested methods invoking all of your senses, along with those of your companions. a social trapeze act without the net, if you’d like.

    Nobody hides behind their black rectangle, and the art of conversation is all you’ve got aside from physical expressions that accompany the dialogue, not all that different from back in the Middle Ages.

    1. The Rev Kev

      Ever have any people go with your group only to discover that their black rectangle is now only dead weight? If so, how do they take it after waving it in the air trying to catch any signal?

      1. Carolinian

        I read a recent book on the Appalachian Trail and the author goes on the trail to see what it is like in the era of the smartphone. So it seems many do take the black rectangle and especially on long through hikes. When they get to a town they crowd around charging opportunities.

        And why wouldn’t they? The thing only weighs a few ounces and might save your life if you happen to be in cell range. The trail does follow mtn ridge lines.

        There’s also a Youtube genre of the young and photogenic videoing their hikes for the vicarious pleasure of a hopefully generous audience. These I know to take place out West since my bro loves them.

        I rarely take my phone on my local hkes (or anywhere) but I probably should. After all the NSA needs to keep track of me. /s

        1. ambrit

          Continuous telephonic location data is also vital information for our “Permanent Files.”
          Now our entire lives are High School Plays.

        2. Wukchumni

          The Appalachian trail is hardly wilderness, you’re never all that far from connectivity, and most everybody does carry a black rectangle in lieu of a bulky camera, and star apps are useful along with built in topo maps

          The only connectivity you have is with nature or your friends, and don’t worry about f-stops or other arcane camera functions of the past, just point and click, and as an added bonus you’ve got a movie camera too that would have been the envy of Hollywood back in the day.

          1. Carolinian

            Well obviously on your wilderness hikes you need a satellite phone. Or maybe a Starlink terminal? ;)

            Smoke signals and mirrors may be out of date or figments of western movies.

            You say you always hike with a partner so guess that’s the only safety backup for the great Sierras.

      2. griffen

        I prefer to have it on my longer hikes absent rainfall or inclement weather…just in event stuff happens and we need to reach someone or anyone…some spots in western NC however it indeed becomes just an expensive gadget that don’t work.

      3. Judith

        I spend a lot of time in the woods by myself birdwatching. I would rather not carry my phone with me but unfortunately I think it is a safety issue.

    2. Amfortas the Hippie

      one of my biggest lifelong complaints about my mother is her almost puritan work ethic…for me and my brother, at least.
      especially if its essentially busywork…and laborious,lol…and the more counterproductive and meaningless, the better.
      now, my boys have caught on….(for most of their lives, i strove to not influence their opinion of my mom with my whinging…no longer, once they broached that barrier, themselves).

      given this, in some ways my disability is a kind of blessing…once i had the xrays, mris, and various doctor statements and reports to prove i wasn’t just lazy and faking it, i then had a ready excuse for a day off, here or there,lol.
      after the proof, it was grudgingly accepted.
      now, i simply refuse to move that fence in the garden 6 feet to the left for no purpose.
      or whatever insane thing she obsesses about that must be done RFN.
      on my beer drinkin days(thursdays and sundays, ideally), i keep the volume down at the wilderness bar until after feedin time, lest she hear it, and call up with a giant list and harsh my mellow…as if she cant stand the very idea of leisure.
      idk if its a boomer thing, or what…i have noticed this same sort of phenomenon…albeit in a less pathological form…in others of her generation over the years.
      wife said a few times that she thought that mom just enjoyed watching people work for her….like when i’d find a crew for whatever project i had going, and she’d entice them to come work for her….she’d be happy as a clam for a few days…bubbly even…what with all that activity to no purpose.
      but then they’d never answer her calls, again,lol…and that would be that.
      these days i warn the people that come work for me away from her.
      so that she doesn’t chase off my occasional labor pool.

  11. DJG, Reality Czar

    Brethren and sistren: A question.

    What is this port for supplies in Gaza supposed to accomplish?

    As ever, the Western elites have no strategy and incompetent tactics. Of course, the double whammy of Biden and van der Leyen is a guarantee of malign incompetence.

    The strategy should be a ceasefire, negotiations, and some permanent resolution involving one state or two states. Is this tactic, the port to keep the Gazans just above group starvation, of any merit?

    As in the case of Ukraine, it is obvious that the U.S., U.K., and EU elites want wars to “manage.” Long, profitable wars.

    So what is the purpose of a port for supplies to a tiny country being bombed to smithereens by the Israelis who also control all the sea lanes? Are we to expect that the Ursula will be on the deck of the Steamship Flour Ration fighting the Israeli navy to make it to the temporary pie?

    1. NotTimothyGeithner

      60 to 90 days is all one needs to know to build this Biden pier. It’s for the people who believe Biden is good at heart of has secret plans. They will believe anything.

      1. Carolinian

        Never underestimate Joe’s ability to…..

        You know the rest. But then Obama picked the guy so what does that say about him?

      2. ambrit

        Too true. As a contrast, how long did it take to build the artificial harbours at Normandy used to supply the D-Day Allied forces? Even though pre-fabbed, about a week.
        As the Emperor Claudius says in the scene in the teleplay version of “I, Claudius” when looking over old plans for the ‘built’ harbour at Ostia, west of Rome proper, “The Divine Julius certainly knew what he was about. Yes.”
        Everything old is new again. ‘They’ were fighting over the Palestine two thousand years ago, and ‘They’ still are.

        1. jrkrideau

          As a contrast, how long did it take to build the artificial harbours at Normandy used to supply the D-Day Allied forces?

          Prob ably several months. Thy were built in the UK and towed into place.

          1. ambrit

            Yes, but I’m suggesting that the constituent parts of a ‘floating dock’ are already available, either militarily or commercially. Putting the parts together is the week mentioned.

    2. Will

      1. It’s a public relations stunt, or
      2. Used to get Gazans around Egypt’s border wall, or
      3. Bidenomics – instead of bridges to nowhere, build piers to nowhere!

      1. Em

        Justin Podur goes into this in some depth in the second half of this Sitrep –

        The idea of staging American sailors there specifically as a tripwire against Iranian, Turkish, or Chinese actions is certainly interesting. Though I still think it’s primarily an alternative to the Sinai ethnic cleansing plan.

        1. Em

          If I was a sailor or marine who got orders for the Gaza pier, I would conscientious objector out immediately. Whoever is sent there is just bait for an Israeli false flag or honest rightful attacks by Hamas and Hezbollah. Just pre-positioned meat for empire.

    3. The Rev Kev

      I would say that it is a delaying mechanism that makes the Biden White House that it is actually doing something just like the air drops. It let’s the Israelis continue their attacks on the Palestinians and starving them because everybody “knows” that a port will be there in two or three months time. I wonder how many Palestinians will starve in that time period. But the most important point is that it hides the fact that all those supplies could be going through to Gaza right now but the Israelis are deliberately bottle-necking it.

      Saw something remarkable tonight. It was an interviewer named Clarissa Ward who works for CNN. She was interviewing the relatives of the Israeli hostages who were trying to stop all food going into Gaza and letting them starve, including the children, But she was – get this – actually challenging them on their bs and giving facts that contradicted their opinions. She was actually showing them to be the mean-spirited people that they are and she mentioned that in a survey, that two-thirds of Israelis are just fine with starving the Palestinians. I never saw anything like this. I mean seriously, a CNN reporter-

      1. Lena

        I watched the Clarissa Ward interview. It was difficult. I tell myself, don’t turn away, force yourself to watch, even though I feel the helpless, hopeless anger building inside me. That little Palestinian boy, so thin, in so much pain. His poor mother, already having lost two children. What can I do to help them? To watch is to at least acknowledge what is happening. The suffering, death and destruction that my government is giving its “ironclad support”. I want to scream.

        1. Jason Boxman

          This is the same political class that murdered three quarters of a million Americans during Biden’s Winter of Death, with scarcely a care in the world.

          Aiding genocide, as horrific as it is, isn’t really a surprise.

          The Biden administration is pointedly, carelessly evil. That’s worse than malevolence, for in that at least there’s a concern when committing the evil. In casual evil, there isn’t even consideration.

          1. eg

            “They were careless people, Tom and Daisy — they smashed up things and creatures and then retreated back into their money or their vast carelessness or whatever it was that kept them together, and let other people clean up the mess they had made.”

    4. doug

      As others said, PR stunt. I can also see the supply ship ‘getting sunk by the Houthi’ false flag possibility.

    5. Bugs

      It’s a low risk naval landing and military supply operation in the eastern Mediterranean. The kind of training opportunity that only comes up once in a generation. That’s why the UK wanted in as well. Finally some use for that Cyprus base, besides officers flying around importantly and long weekend jollies in Larnaca.

      1. DJG, Reality Czar

        Bugs: Thanks for mentioning the bases in Cyprus, which, I believe, are “extraterritorial,” little bits of Rule Britannia where they should not be. ‘Tis a mystery to me why negotiations to put Cyprus back together just never seem to succeed.

        1. Michaelmas

          Tis a mystery to me why negotiations to put Cyprus back together just never seem to succeed.

          It’s about the sigint collection — largely, US sigint collection.

          In 1974, the UK was about to close those bases when the costs of running a military policing action in Northern Ireland were biting into UK’s overall defense budget, so the US kicked in a continuing contribution and the British cancelled the closure.

          US use of the Cyprus bases increased, with forex lots of U-2 flights taking off and landing at night. I suspect — based on the UK having far more employees in its intel agencies between GCHQ, SIS (aka MI6), and the British Army’s DIA than it has personnel in its regular military, alongside its willingness in 1974 to close them — that the UK itself could take or leave those bases.

    6. griffen

      Does it count under infrastructure or under military? By the bye, could it also serve as a starting point, if categorized under the former, to send over MayoPete Buttigieg to be the overseer of said install? After all, Pete has experience in transportation during a military exercise, I believe.

      Sort of serious but also a tinge of sarcasm…. performative theater methinks.

    7. The Rev Kev

      And when it gets built the Israelis will demand that the Americans leave and that they control all the security for it, which ships can dock, what they can unload, etc. so it will be just the same as an Israeli border crossing right now. And Biden will never challenge them on this.

      1. Em

        Didn’t Biden already say that Israelis will be able to control what gets in and will act as security for the pier? So basically they expect the genocidal maniacs who have barred thousands of aid trucks from entering Gaza to let them in by water?

      2. Paul Jurczak

        Of course. This is an old plan, see:–for-a-seaport-hotels-airport/2016/06/20/e45ce6fc-7948-4a10-bef3-0f782b030739_story.html. It will become another American subsidy to Israel, which will retain complete control over the installation. Yet another example of subverting the original intent of Oslo Accords to provide Gazans with a window to the world:

    8. Skip Intro

      In the short term it is an election stunt, in the long term, Israeli real estate agents are already carving up the neighborhood and taking deposits.

    9. Judith

      I seem to remember a commenter suggesting the port would be useful when the extraction of the offshore oil and gas reserves commences. Perhaps someone is planning ahead.

    10. ilsm

      Turn off the spigot of US/EU support of any and all types to the genocidal country run from Jerusalem.

      This is evil!

    11. flora

      Getting 1000 US troops near/into Isr/Gaza? For starters? What could go wrong?

      RIP, Aaron Bushnell.

      1. Antifa

        (melody borrowed from You Didn’t Have To Be So Nice by The Lovin’ Spoonful)

        Aaron Bushnell’s sacrifice
        A debt he felt he had to pay
        What I can’t do for any price
        He did like it was child’s play
        He felt the time was right for him to follow through
        ‘Free Palestine!’ he yelled for me and you
        And it’s true

        He didn’t run or look away
        As flames were rising to his face
        He took the pain as if to say
        Your conscience is a fiery place

        Now we watch genocide each day (genocide each day)
        And in our anguish start to pray (start to pray)
        The Jews can’t build their paradise (some paradise)
        Without there being Hell to pay (Hell to pay)
        One day you’ll feel the time is right to follow through (to follow through)
        Protesters marching by will call to you (call to you)
        Join the queue!

        Aaron Bushnell sacrificed (Aaron sacrificed)
        He didn’t turn his gaze away (turn his face away)
        He made us look at Gaza’s price (Gaza’s price)
        And said the thing he had to say (had to say)

          1. marku52

            I don’t know how you do this (so well) day after day. A talent, sometimes a sad one.

            reply to Antifa…..

    12. Daniil Adamov

      I’m pretty sure it’s so that Democrats can point at it and say: “Biden is enabling genocide? But look, he set up a pier! With this, he is working against genocide, so all allegations to the contrary are invalid.” It’s possible there are some other goals as well.

      It also occurs to me that a widely advertised and singular supply port would be an obvious and easy point to herd desperate Palestinians towards, for any number of aims.

    13. Judith

      Elijah Magnier has a good discussion of the possible long-term military intentions behind the port:

    14. Offtrail

      As far as Biden is concerned, a competent tactic is one that convinces the American electorate that he’s doing something. Any benefit to Gazans is strictly ancillary.

      His administration has not done a good job lately of showing that it cares. Pamela Harris’ recent remarks in Alabama reminded me of the Robert Di Niro character in “Killers of the Flower Moon”.

    15. Dessa

      I’d bet dollars over donuts that it’s going to connect to that road Israel is digging right across Gaza, and that this is a preliminary step to their offshore natural gas project.

  12. QuarterBack

    Re the “Maritime Aid Corridor to Gaza”. It sure would be a handy way to bring large numbers of tanks and other heavy weapons into Gaza without having to traverse the bombed out roads bridges and ambush choke points. Just saying.

    1. vao


      And if those plans about bringing an “international peace-keeping force” come to fruition, expect many NATO and Israel-friendly troops to disembark on that harbour.

  13. MT_Wild

    Coywolves and sparred owls are two interesting cases of evolution through hybridization where the new species was both enabled by and better suited for an environment modified by humans.

    1. Carolinian

      I know our local wildlife includes coyotes–maybe real wolves soon? They can eat the mammoths.

    2. ilsm

      About 10 years ago I was out and about justr after dawn in Bedford Ma, near a green belt/mixed wetlands and saw a coyote (?) in the edge. A beautiful, robust example of canine.

      1. Joe Well

        I saw a coyote late at night a few years ago while exiting the Turnpike in Newton (I was exiting, the coyote was running into a residential neighborhood). The coyote’s fur almost sparkled when caught in my headlights and combined with how it moved was a little eerie. Like a supernatural ghost dog.

    3. Joe Well

      This reminded me of Margaret Atwood’s dystopian-postapocalyptic series of novels, Oryx and Crake, where all the animals started hybridizing, helped along by genetic engineering, so there were rakunks.

      Since there are so many SF readers in NCland, I’m surprised the novels aren’t mentioned more here. Of course, she’s not as imaginative as William Gibson and her politics are even worse, but her writing is wonderful.

      1. Pat

        Spent an enjoyable evening of listening to her and Neil Gaiman discussing her work.

        Funnily enough, I think something that should have been a huge boost to her career hurt it in the long run. This was the television series of Handmaid’s Tale. I know she loved it, but I was so so on it from the start and then it just kept going. And the longer it did the further it got away from the power of the original novel. I had to rethink what I thought she was saying there and for other work. I used to look forward to her books, but since I don’t trust myself reading her, I no longer care. And for people who were introduced to Atwood with the series, they don’t always like her novels – they loved Handmaiden and X just isn’t as good At least not the couple of people I talked in the last couple years about it. It shouldn’t work that way, but…

    4. Boomheist

      I worked on a project with Dr. Raymond Coppinger in 1970 seeking to determine if the eastern coyote was a version of a wild canid (ie a wolf coyote cross) or perhaps a combined domestic dog-wild canid variant (for example coyote-domestic dog). We actually went to northern New Hampshire and spent three weeks camping out in the middle of the winter in a huge swampy area tracking canids. We found, eventually, two dead animals, and dissected them in the lab. Both had been shot and crawled off to die, probably from shooters along a road. Ray said that domestic canids had pineal glands and wild canids did not, or maybe it was the other way around, but it was unclear if a species mix *wild and domestic) would have such a gland.

      In the end we never determined how the eastern coyote or coydog came to be. In 1938 there was a great hurricane in New England and a game farm in New Hampshire, Corbin’s Game Farm, was breached such that some wild animals held there escaped, including wolves and boars. The boars “took” and maybe the wolves interbred with domestic dogs and these became the coydog. Or maybe the coydog came from the west, from Minnnesota, maybe from a wolf-domestic mixture occurring there.

      What is true, however, is that in New England the entire area was deforested for farming in the 17th, 18th, and 19th centuries, such that by, say, 1900 New England was 30 percent forest and 70 percent open land. Now, and even in 1970, New England was and is 70 percent forested and 30 percent open, recreating habitats suitable to predators.

      1. Lee

        His books on dogs and their evolution are among my favorite reads. The selective breeding for altering instinctive hunting behaviors, particularly as regards herding, is fascinating.

  14. CA

    Arnaud Bertrand @RnaudBertrand

    If this passes we’ll be in the interesting situation where China doesn’t forbid its own citizens to travel to any capitalist countries but the US – supposedly the force for “freedom” in the world – forbids its own citizens to travel to an increasingly large amount of places: Cuba, Iran, Venezuela, etc. and maybe Xinjiang soon…

    Xinjiang which not many people know has now become one of the world’s top touristic destinations, with an astounding 265 million tourists visiting last year !

    Anyone can go there freely with a normal Chinese visa and actually, as of recently, many countries (like about half of the European countries) don’t even need a visa at all. And interestingly despite these hundreds of millions of tourists going there with their mobile phones, allowed to go anywhere unimpeded in the province, we strangely have yet to see a single image indicative of a genocide going on, Unlike the images we get daily from Gaza…

    Which is undoubtedly the very reason why the US wants to forbid their citizens from seeing the place with their own eyes, instead of via the prism of their dystopian propagandizing media… *

    US lawmakers urge Blinken to ban travel to China’s Xinjiang
    They also ask 3 US travel agencies to stop offering tours to the region so as to avoid perpetuating ‘atrocity crimes.’

    * Radio Free Asia

    8:16 AM · Mar 9, 2024

    1. Gregorio

      They’re probably afraid that too many people will go there and realize that their official narrative is just more fake news.

    2. JBird4049

      Does anyone know about the over one million (formerly two million) Americans imprisoned in the American carceral state? Or the hundreds of thousands of Native Americans trapped in their reservations who are the poorest people with the worst economic and social stats of any other large group in the United States? This includes addiction, rape, suicide, and murder.

      Nobody, or nobody remotely sane and honest, has said that a Nazi or Israeli style genocide is occurring or has occurred, in China, but that does not mean horrible things had been or is being done.

      The United States is a master manipulator of lies and facts done to obscure its extensive list of crime, but do not think that others don’t do the same.

  15. Enter Laughing

    RE: Minimizers : if covid were harming immune systems, we’d be seeing more TB

    Wonder if the influx of illegal immigrants factors into the number of TB cases.

    After all, about 300,000 illegal immigrants entered the San Diego region in 2023.

    According to JAMA, it’s been long reported that the largest absolute numbers of cases of tuberculosis (TB) among foreign-born individuals in the United States have been reported by the state of California.

    A Canadian study is more specific about the TB rate in foreign-born immigrants, finding that immigrants had a rate of active TB 20 times greater than Canadian-born residents.

    There’s no question illegal immigrants are surging into San Diego ERs, with the number of admissions doubling or tripling over previous admissions. I haven’t seen a breakdown of the reasons for the increased admissions.

    Maybe some news organization could investigate the extent to which illegal immigration is perhaps a contributing factor to the rise in TB in San Diego.

    1. JBird4049

      I worry about emphasizing either the possibility or reality of migrants bringing in infectious diseases, not because of the truthfulness, but because too many small souled humans will it to dehumanize the migrants. There are strong arguments against the current immigration disaster to be used without dehumanization. However, it is easier to incite hatred and violence against the weak then to work on solving a problem.

      I am fairly anti immigration for now, and I am strongly pro immigration reform, but I also believe that the vast majority of immigrants are the victims of the same people who have not only destroyed their countries but also ours.

      1. Enter Laughing

        My problem is the tweet that pins the increase in TB on Covid without any acknowledgement that it could be the result of other causes.

        For example, the article linked in the tweet says that the number of TB cases rose to 243 in 2023.

        But according to the San Diego County Tuberculosis Program the TB rate fluctuates and has been even higher in the recent past — there were 258 cases in 2016 and 264 cases in 2019. Were those increases also because of Covid?

        I don’t think it helps our understanding of public health to reflexively blame Covid for every problem that comes along without considering the bigger picture.

  16. GDmofo

    1k soldiers to build a pier, it’s almost like it’s a great excuse/cover for stationing troops near by. Now kids won’t set themselves on fire when they get their marching orders to go over there, plus they can tell themselves they’re doing something good! And all the other people that are being sent over there for “other”, less humanitarian means, can use this for cover!

  17. Benny Profane

    So, the NYT is trying to keep this Navalny thing alive by publishing this today:
    A blatant regime change piece of propaganda, but, that’s no surprise, right? Howlers are that the “team” “organizing” this movement are all outside the country, and, mystery of mysteries, nobody knows where the funding comes from, except a mention of “private donors”.
    But, again, they elevate the wife, or, can we say, ex wife, as the new leader of this movement, but never mention that she not only lives in relative comfort outside of Russia, but never even went to his funeral. I really doubt Putin would have prevented her from doing that, even though he isn’t the nicest guy in the world. The only thing I have heard from her was that short speech in front of well fed and dressed EU beauracrats telling them what they wanted to hear.
    Does anybody know that there is truth to the stories that she is living with her rich boyfriend in London?

  18. ambrit

    Re. the Gaza Pier. Excuse me if I err, but doesn’t Gaza already have a harbour? One that was bombed ‘closed’ by the Israelis early on in the IG War? Why not reopen that?
    As others above have observed, this looks suspiciously like a Performative Policy by “Angry Grandpa” Biden.

    1. Nikkikat

      Yep, just another PR hit from Jake Sullivan. This whole thing stinks of gas lighting. It’s a signal to the press to keep this narrative going to stave off those protests and especially the uncommitted votes. Never mind how ridiculous it is for the US to
      Claim that mean old israel won’t give us the key to the gate! It’s insulting that they believe this will buy us off. This scheme won’t work but lots of babies will have starved by then. This is all because a demented old man wants Israel to kill all these people.
      Biden could care less.

  19. Wukchumni

    …We got it together, didn’t we
    We’ve definitely got our thing together don’t we Bibi
    Isn’t that nice
    I mean really, when really sit and think about it
    Isn’t it really, really nice

    …I can easily feel myself slipping
    In more and more ways
    That super genocide world of my own
    Nobody but you and me

    …We’ve got it together Bibi

    …My first, my last, my everything
    And the answer to all my dreams
    You’re my sun, my moon, my guiding star now Beau’s gone
    My kind of wonderful, that’s what you are

    …I know there’s only, only one like you
    There’s no way they could have made two Netanyahus
    You’re, you’re all I’m living for, your love I’ll keep forevermore
    You’re the first, you’re the last, my everything

    … In you I’ve found so many things
    A love so new, only you could bring
    Can’t you see it’s you? You make me feel this way
    You’re like a fresh morning dew on a brand new day

    … I see so many ways that I
    Can love you ’til the day I die
    You’re my reality, yet I’m lost in a dream
    You’re the first, the last, my everything

    … I know there’s only, only one like you
    There’s no way they could have made a two state solution
    Netanyahu, you’re my reality, but I’m lost in a dream
    You’re the first, you’re the last, my everything

    … You and me Bibi
    It’s you, and me
    And you are the first, the last, my everything

    You’re The First, The Last, My Everything
    , by Barry White and the Love Unlimited Orchestra

  20. The Rev Kev

    “Russia requests UN Security Council meeting to discuss Macron’s threats to send troops to Ukraine’

    Sounds like Russia is going to call Macron out before the UN. Macron is demanding that they will send troops in to stop Russia going to Kiev or Odessa. If Russia lets this stand, then the Germans will do the same for Kharkov and the British for Kherson. And so the Russians will, after a warning, annihilate any foreign forces in the Ukraine – which just happens to be a war zone. This sounds like Macron is bluffing to make the Russians stop where they are. Not going to happen, especially after all the blood and treasure that they have expended. To do so means that they will lose the war so the Russians will make it clear that any foreign troops in the Ukraine are fair game.

    1. jrkrideau

      the Russians will make it clear that any foreign troops in the Ukraine are fair game.

      Putin, Medvedev and others have made this very clear many times. The West seems to refuse to believe this.

      “Russia would never dare invade Ukraine”.


    1. Bsn

      Ye, but then good luck trying to clean the pot. Had a renter once who went off the handle and poured wax down the toilet. What a mess.

  21. Carolinian

    re Columbia

    Much of the conversation centered on the lack of an agreed-upon definition for antisemitism. After Fuchs invoked the “I know it when I see it” line, a Jewish student said they were “extremely alarmed” over the task force not defining antisemitism. That led to a tense exchange in which Fuchs repeatedly interrupted the student and briskly reminded the room that the meeting was confidential. When the student pushed back, the task force co-chair called out the student for taking notes and beginning their question “in a very provocative, antagonistic tone.”

    A recent article on the education of NYT reporters cited Columbia as a leading source–a rigorous source, clearly. Or perhaps it’s a well funded by special pleaders source. You’ve got to be taught goes the song and if you are Jewish and object to Gaza somebody who doesn’t know you gets to call you “self hating” and make it stick. This is about power, not prejudice.

    1. Pat

      I don’t think they would have enjoyed my response, that first they would need to make sure everyone knew who qualifies, what were the traditional Semitic tribes, Something that would make it very clear that it does not just apply to Jews and Israelis, but most everyone from the region as well. And that support of the Palestinians cannot by any definition be antisemitism as they are both by definition, and DNA, descendants of a Semitic tribe.

  22. Tom Stone

    I was thinking about what Genocide Joe could do to improve his polling this morning, due to concerns about his age and health many people will feel that they are actually voting for whomever is his VP and Kamala Harris is a liability.
    Michelle ruled herself out, Oprah has too much sense to want the job and Stacy Abrams…is Stacy Abrams.
    What’s needed is a Woman of Color that both the MSM and the PMC will be genuinely enthusiastic about, one that has all the qualities that they admire.
    Megan Markle.

    1. griffen

      It seems his outreach could focus on younger voters say, those under 35…so he recently did a TikTok video aimed at this cohort on Super Bowl Sunday. That video may have also included a rant on corporate greed and “shrinkflation” being a problem…

      I’d suggest someone that cohort recognized and kinda like them too. Not sure Megan fits that spot…a famous comedian maybe? What’s Amy Schumer been up to lately I wonder.

    2. Screwball

      Whoopi Goldberg. She has made a living out of trashing Trump. They love anyone who trashes Trump – that is their life – all they think about. She doesn’t have to be right or smart – they will believe anybody or anything. Joe Scarborough could be her running mate.

      If not Whoopi, Joy Reid.

      Yea, that’s the ticket!

      1. Lena

        Rachel! Not a woman of color, but hey, she is a lesbian. Our first lesbian VP! I feel the excitement.

        1. Screwball

          Yes, a good idea, and she’s got the whole Russia angle figured out too.

          I’m really amazed (not really I guess) how so many are still on the blame Russia for everything train.

          The ones I have talked to since the SOTU speech thinks Joe knocked it out of the park. Some said they were shaking their fists in solidarity. They also have convinced themselves the November election is going to be a big winner – because Trump. Their theory is; by then so many more undecideds will finally see how bad Trump is, they will pull the lever for Joe because he is far and away so much better.

          Then Trump will be gone and everyone lived happily ever after.

          It’s truly astonishing how many of these people, who are off the charts arrogant, think everyone but them are no nothing idiots, still buy into all the BS they are fed, no matter how wrong and ridiculous it is.

          Like someone above said; they will believe anything.


  23. Carolinian

    Re Patrick Lawrence reads Hunter’s closed door testimony. Clearly Biden is not going to be impeached at this late point but it is important that the facts come out as he approaches electoral judgment by the public. As Michael Kinsley said the real crimes are usually what’s legal rather than illegal and on that level we instead need a Nuremberg for all the bodies piling up. Not that that will happen either but the voting public can save us from still more “what’s legal” if only they will.

    1. Bsn

      But then again, Biden will likely win the election regardless of how the populace votes. So, let’s keep this on the back burner until we need to get it boiling again.

  24. griffen

    Article on the impeachment proceedings and the Hunter Biden deposition… performative theater from the one side ” nothing to see nothing is tied directly into Joe R Biden” since forever…I’m not convinced as yet the Republicans got the goods on Scranton Joe. When it comes to Hunter I still must suggest, change his last name and the optics become clear. Same could likely apply to brother James too.

    If he’s a Joe Smith or Johnny Johnson, just a regular no name his tail is wearing orange. Just saying.

    1. Wukchumni

      In lieu of lately having Hunter’s wardrobe consisting of 3 piece suits-complete with old glory lapel pin, why not have Hunter embrace his inner hunter, dressed in full camo and hiding behind a duck blind?

  25. Wukchumni

    Imagine going out on a limb, taking one off for the team?

    Many of the fans who attended the Kansas City Chiefs wild-card round victory over the Miami Dolphins at Arrowhead Stadium in January and suffered from frostbite due to the extremely cold conditions are now facing the need for amputations, according to a report from Kansas City television station Fox4.

    Seventy percent of the frostbite victims who have sought medical attention at the Grossman Burn Center this winter are now facing the need for amputations, according to the report. Dr. Megan Garcia, the medical director at Grossman Burns Center, said many of those victims are Chiefs fans who attended the Jan. 13 wild-card game.

      1. Wukchumni

        Maybe next season in KC, the High 3 celebration becomes popularized among the fan base?

        1. ChrisFromGA

          One silver lining of being a Bills fan. You’re so hardened from living in the arctic that your extremities have anti-freeze.

          1. Wukchumni

            I mistakenly thought I was no longer a Long Suffering Bills Fan, and had to have hope amputated.

          2. griffen

            Silver lining made me think of what I consider a relatively good song,even if I don’t know this particular band’s work all that well. “Won’t take the easy road…”

            Vicariously I’d think the NE Patriots recent struggles post TB12, at least dent the pain even a little.


        2. Henry Moon Pie

          Some of the Chiefs’ receivers acted as if they had three fingers at times–during the regular season. Miraculously, the problem seemed to resolve itself just in time for the game in balmy Buffalo.

          I guess a High 3 would be appropriate for a team attempting an unprecedented (in the post-merger NFL) Three Peat.

          1. Wukchumni

            I have to hand it to you Henry, your Chiefs are the Steelers of the 70’s, to my Bills being the Oilers of the 70’s, a good Houston squad that could never get beyond the steel curtain in the playoffs.

  26. Wukchumni

    A mystery benefactor is helping solve this National Park’s affordable housing crisis.

    An anonymous donor has given $40 million to Yellowstone through the National Park Foundation, specifically with the intent of ensuring that park employees can actually afford to live near the 2.2-million-acre wilderness, Montana Public Radio reported this week.

    The protected swath of nature — which spans portions of Wyoming, Montana and Idaho — has grown increasingly popular in recent years, with visitation rates reaching record highs and, paradoxically, making it harder and harder for staff to find housing.

    “I can count at least five critical positions where we’ve tried to recruit, but we got turned down by the applicant because of a lack of housing,” Park Superintendent Cam Sholly told the outlet.

    This is where its at with our National Parks, we need generous GoFundMe benefactors to fill in for the Feds as politicians shrink the NPS budget even further.

    Sequoia NP has a bunch of open critical positions that need filling, but there’s no housing for them, and all the rentals here in Tiny Town are AirBnB’s and the like.

    1. griffen

      In a present world full of woe and glum, I’ll accept any glimmer of light and hope, so good on the donor whomever that may. Someone ought to get proper credit.

      Perhaps a stealthy investor has reaped the windfall from owning stock in the Nvidia Corp and has since cashed in those winnings at the casino, er Wall Street?!? Mild sarcasm but hey that’s a booming winner ever since May or June of last year.

  27. Gloria

    The job applicants shut out by AI: ‘The interviewer sounded like Siri’

    “Is it cheating to use A.I. when answering a robot?”

    A broader question: Is it wrong to cheat or steal from a robot?

    “Citizens are duty bound to pay their debts and honor their contracts under penalty of law and social censure. Corporations can reorganize, declare bankruptcy, be bought and sold and default on their employees’ pensions and commitments to society with impunity. They dump their responsibilities onto the taxpayers who subsidize their private profits. Corporations pollute everyone’s environment with impunity, giving people diseases, yet corporations don’t get sick.

    In light of this, it seems perfectly correct to treat corporations differently than one would treat a person or a family owned business that respects its employees and serves the community. Since corporations have no notions of honesty, fair play or decency when dealing with people, we should have no such moral obligations toward corporations or robots.”

    1. bobert

      It strikes me that the impetus for at least some of the much-ballyhooed, “Just around the corner!” claims about artificial consciousness is the need to provide AI and by extension robots with all the legal privileges of being a human. Being the tools of wealthy and powerful interests, they will enjoy staunch legal protections in case it’s needed. You, on the other hand, will face the full extent of the law that now includes dead things as people with full human rights.

    1. tegnost

      After Russia invaded Ukraine in February 2022, Europe tried to secure alternatives to Russian energy supplies, and revived a Palestinian initiative to extract natural gas off the coast of Gaza. It was hoped that the $1.4bn project – involving the Palestinian Authority, Egypt, Israel and Hamas – could launch gas production by March 2024.

      I, for one, wouldn’t put it past them. The US clearly doesn’t want the conflict to stop.
      Why not?

    2. ambrit

      I’m ‘dead’ certain that it will have a “Bait Shop” at the end. Which end, I leave up to your imagination.
      “Hey Ari! Throw a MRE out there and let’s see what rises to the bait.”
      “No, no, no! That’s against the Greater Israel Wildlife and Fisheries Department guidelines!”
      “You’re no fun!”

  28. CA

    An important finding on manufacturing productivity in America has been confirmed. American manufacturing has actually been declining since 2011, for all the supposed manufacturing planning being done especially keeping high level international competition in mind.

    January 30, 2018

    Manufacturing Productivity, * 1988-2023

    * Output per hour of all persons

    (Indexed to 1988)

    January 30, 2018

    Manufacturing Productivity, * 2000-2023

    * Output per hour of all persons

    (Indexed to 2000)

  29. Jason Boxman

    A related thought on

    Minimizers : if covid were harming immune systems, we’d be seeing more TB

    I wonder how much our unchecked immigration woes affects this? I recall IM Doc said he’s seeing infectious diseases that previously weren’t common in his area from all this unchecked migration.

    You’d think Republicans would use that as a talking point. That immigrants are literal disease carriers. But apparently not.

    And it’s a real concern. One that isn’t being addressed, but is quite literally festering.

  30. antidlc

    Two pilots fall asleep for almost 30 minutes during passenger flight

    A disaster was narrowly avoided after two pilots fell asleep for almost 30 minutes mid-flight while passengers were onboard.

    A Batik Airplane in Indonesia reportedly drifted off its planned flight path after both the pilot and co-pilot snoozed off in the cockpit for 28 minutes.

    The pair fell asleep despite being responsible for the lives of 153 passengers on board.

    Although the plane eventually landed safely, officials have launched an investigation into the incident, which reportedly happened on January 25 as the plane was on its way from South East Sulawesi to the capital Jakarta.

    1. Screwball

      Between the TSA goons who want to rape me, the mechanical problems we see almost daily, and now this; I will never get on an airplane again. Actually, I don’t even want to drive past an airport. A wheel might fall on me.


    1. Jeremy Grimm

      Thank you for the link. I hope battery technology will progress … but I do not expect to find coin water-batteries available at my local Dollar Store any day soon. For decades I have watched for and followed announcements of new wonder technologies only to find disappointment. The Market which the u.s. so thoroughly relies upon seems to completely filter out technical advances that threaten existing investments and existing Corporate products.

      I will shamelessly use this comment on your link to express my extreme consternation after reading Hansen’s Draft pdfs for Sophie’s Planet. Therein I became aware of the Integral Fast Reactor [IFR] technology that Hansen advocated as a crucial component of a reliable electric Grid using substantial amounts of intermittent power — like Solar and Wind power. I do not know that IFR reactors are the ‘answer’ but I am sure that though implemented and tested … to a point … they were and are extremely promising as a way to avoid the kind of Collapse I can too easily envision without them. I can only wonder why Clinton so precipitously cancelled funding lines for their study.

      I have been outspoken in comments at NakedCapitalism expressing my antipathy toward Nuclear Reactors as tools for powering the future. Learning more about IFR technology I am beginning to wonder at and regret my knee-jerk opposition to … all … Nuclear Power. I am strongly biased by the level of mendacity promulgated by the u.s. Atomic Energy Commission, and expect I will regret that bias.

      1. Steve H.

        Changing your mind with new evidence and techniques could be referred to as Modification With Descent.

        But use the Precautionary Principle for poisons that will be active for thousands of years. Malevolence must be assumed, and the Elephant’s Foot will be a potential weapon for centuries.

        Outside of the Biosphere, Nuclear Power is nearly inevitable. Good luck with that.

        1. GramSci

          The claim by IFR reactors is that:

          «The waste products of IFR reactors either have a short half-life, which means that they decay quickly and become relatively safe, or a long halflife, which means that they are only slightly radioactive. Due to pyroprocessing the total volume of true waste/fission products is 1/20th the volume of spent fuel produced by a light water plant of the same power output, and is often all considered to be waste.»


  31. Gregorio

    Regarding: “Zelenskyy taps ousted commander-in-chief as envoy to UK in ‘compromise’ move”
    I wonder if Vegas is offering odds yet on him being the next Novichok victim?

  32. Glen

    Re: Ukraine war and Western system’s fatal flaw

    As the New York Times reported last September, Russia is producing at least seven times more ammunition than the US and its Western allies combined, and she is producing it at about 1/10th of the cost of western manufacturers. For example, while the cost per round for a Russian 152 mm round is about $600, NATO must budget between $6,000 and $8,000 per each 155 mm round.

    I think it’s safe to say that Western elites are realizing that a neoliberal economic system which focuses on maximizing profit cannot win a war.

    But I would say that is a short sighted conclusion, and would expand it to include health care, education, food, housing, finance (banking), utilities. Look at the article also linked to about elite health care:

    VIP Health System for Top US Officials Risked Jeopardizing Care for Soldiers

    Through a unit at the White House, government personnel were routinely allowed to receive treatment under aliases, providing no home address or insurance information. For some of them, the care was free, as Walter Reed had no way to bill for it or waived charges.

    Why aren’t they first in line for using “normal” American health care? After all, it’s the best in the world! /snark Instead, they have decided to create a health care system that doesn’t even know how to bill for services, as opposed to the system American’s use which routinely bills Americans for services they have not even received, or which they have supposedly already paid for – claim denied!*
    (*Trademarked Obamacare).

    The West is in a bit of a bind. The neoliberal economic model has failed. The BRICS are making it clear they are not going to play along. But Western elites are still in full TINA mode even if every action they take does nothing but pour more gasoline onto the West’s funeral pyre. I guess it’s “progress’ as defined by Western elites – we now have a whole 0.01% that can be Nero and fiddle while Rome burns.

    1. Jeremy Grimm

      Alas, how did you conclude Western Elites are realizing that a Neoliberal economic system which focuses on maximizing profit cannot win a war? Do you really truly believe that Western Elites care about winning a war? You need to focus on ‘maximizing profit’. That is what Western Elites care about. Do you really believe Western Elites care about health care, education, food, housing, finance (banking), utilities as they affect us hoi polloi? Focus on ‘maximizing profit’ … for as long as possible. After that, the Western Elites are building their bunkers to ride out the times when — as us proles say — the shit hits the fan. Fiddle? What Fiddle? Eat, Drink, and be merry in ‘safe’ enclaves. Rome can burn, as long as the wine cellar holds out.

      1. ChrisFromGA

        Just a guess but my suspicion is that Western Elites, as evidenced by their leaders like Chucky Schumer and Mitch McConnell want to have it both ways – a financialized economy and total victory over Russia.

        And they still think they can.

        The thought that they may have to “pick one” is likely too much for their egos; see the classic Upton Sinclair line about a man whose salary depends on not understanding something being difficult if not impossible to reason with.

        If by some chance they had the self-awareness to realize it’s an either/or scenario, I believe they would choose to save financialization, because to choose a purpose-driven wartime economy would be the end of them.

        That’s because todays financialized MIC supports too large of a chunk of the overall economy. Modern weapons systems built by it don’t just support the troops, but also an entire entourage of grifters, leeches, and laptop class do-nothings who then spend their salaries supporting in turn our “consumer based economy.”

        Karl Denninger has made the point that one reason the health care sector has become such a bloated, inefficient monstrosity is that for every job that touches an actual patient, such as a doctor or a nurse, there are something like 20 back office pencil pushers who make zero difference. They’re the ones who deny claims, or build more useless software that supposedly leads to “efficiency “ but really just adds complexity and burnout.

        I suspect the MIC is similar and likely much worse. (Thank God I have never actually worked for a defense contractor and never will.) How many Raytheon or Boeing jobs actually lead to more resilient, effective weapons systems? Why not just get rid of the contractors completely and have the actual building of weapons systems done by government workers directly?

        Isn’t contracting out this type of work inherently susceptible to grift, fraud, and inefficiency?

        How many MBAs are there? Does Russia need 500 MBAs to build a tank?

        De-financialized weapons would mean cutting loose this entire gang of thieves, and forcing them to either go on actual welfare vs. the disguised version they’re on now.

        Much like scraping the barnacles off a ship before it must enter a race.

        This would be too much psychologically for the Beltway bandits, and might lead to unpredictable scenarios like the collapse of the entire system.

        Or stated more simply and paraphrased from others, late stage capitalist has no reverse gear. It’s forward only towards more financialization of everything, or we hit the wall and everything blows into smithereens.

    2. Jeremy Grimm

      The West is in no bind. The Empire is crumbling. Western Elites have their plan ‘B’ — hide within the Imperial ruins. Those of us outside their liars may suffer … but what do they do they care?

  33. flora

    Taibbi’s latest. paywalled, but the embedded MSM post-game play-by-play, in golf announcers’ tones, is worth watching for the state media factor. / ;)

    State TV Slobbers Over State of the Union
    Could state media in the GDR, Soviet Union, Maoist China, or Pinochet’s Chile have reviewed a leader’s speech as breathlessly as Joe Biden’s State of the Union? Listen before you answer

    1. Pat

      Hey my local news today talked about Biden going to Georgia with his spirited campaign after his “fiery and feisty” SOTU. It doesn’t even have to be a review.

  34. Wukchumni

    Pentagon Report Unveils 50s-60s UFO Sightings as US Spy Planes, Not Aliens BNN

    How disappointing that there isn’t anybody else out there, we’re kind of stuck with ourselves.

    1. Alice X

      They are out there, the vastness of the universe, the vastness of the time (an elusive term) since its inception and the miniscule realm of our species existence, let alone its blip of technology, we haven’t done anything to find them. Or helped them to find us.

      And of course, even if we do hear from them, given the distances, they might already be gone.

  35. Alice X

    My own outrage over the Zionist’s erasure of Palestinians has long ago surpassed a boiling point. What happens to water when it far exceeds its boiling point: it only exists as vapor, it disappears.

    I will not disappear. I am a human crying out for humanity. Is this the NYT crying out, tell me please, and tell me how they can show this picture without massively condemning the powers that be?

    The 10-Year-Old Boy Who Has Become the Face of Starvation in Gaza

    1. Alice X

      …and tell me how they can show this picture without massively condemning the powers that be?

      Where does their conscience lie?

      I will resist my cynical inclination for a brief moment.

    2. Alice X

      Genocide is not a subset of things you check off on a list of things that are OK, not OK, on a list for a political candidate, party, regime.

      It is not a thing you forget. It is not a thing you should ever forget.

      1. The Rev Kev

        If a person or even a nation supports genocide, then at that point they are beyond redemption. The Collective West fighting Russia in the Ukraine was one thing but supporting the Israeli genocide in Gaza means that those of us living in the west are as bad as the Russians say we are.

        1. Alice X

          Chomsky said, some years ago, that the Zionists actually wanted to erase the Palestinians completely, but that it wouldn’t look good to do so.

          Now the Zionists appear to believe they have found the excuse to do so.

          What is the crux this leaves us with? Some of my Judaic friends have said: Zionism has hijacked Judaism.

          They speak of Judaism as being beautiful.

          I speak of the beautiful as such:

          No religion, or its precepts, or its proponents, can rightly proclaim the necessary elimination of another segment of humanity.

          As this correlates to Judaism, I stand with my Judaic friends. As I stand with humanity.

    3. Alice X

      I am thinking now, though I am 74, and perhaps because of, that I must go to some point where I will be arrested in a civil disobedience.

      And yet I think of the Sudan and the Congo. And there are others.

      What can I do?

      1. Alice X

        No problem?


        Can I…even… trade…a bucket of tears for five more minutes of a life of one Palestinian?

        Or should it be…

        In the alternate Universe we do not inhabit:

        No tears, because Palestinians ARE FREE!

        tag this as you willz

  36. VietnamVet

    “VIP Health System for Top US Officials” is another revelation of the “Donor Occupied America”. The fact that the revolving door Mercenary Generals and selected Senior Executives get special health care surprised me. It shouldn’t have. It is amazing how effective the propaganda is at hiding the truth. Since George Carlin joked; “It’s A Big Club… And You Ain’t In It!”, the American Middle Class has not been a member. They simply are its exploited subjects.

    If US Regular Army and National Guard troops are rotated into Ukraine and Middle East meat grinders; the draft will required. The anti-draft protests will be a repeat of the Civil War Riots in New York City and the Vietnam War; or worse. Dick Nixon withdrew the U.S. Army from “Nam” to save it due to the “Silent Revolt” there but he was later forced to resign by the Club in retaliation.

    Without UN Armistices and DMZs on the Line of Contact, this time, defeat will also include the loss of WW3 and the end of the western hegemony. With the likely repeat inauguration of the Trump or the Biden Administration in January 2025, that got the USA in this situation in the first place, the future is very bleak, indeed.

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