Moon of Alabama Brecht quote
January 26, 2021

Sorry, No Post Today.

Sorry, no post today.

The heating installation for the block I am living in failed yesterday. It is supposed to be up again only late this evening. It is freezing not only outside and typing with mittens on is just too inconvenient.

Use as open thread ...

Posted by b on January 26, 2021 at 16:54 UTC | Permalink

« previous page | next page »

Game stoooooooopppppp!

Posted by: Jezabeel | Jan 27 2021 3:50 utc | 101

I don't agree with karlof1.

He has nice ideas but obviously he's still a liberal at heart, and his hatred of the USA (him being an american, likely) blinds the contradiction that is still existing in modern China society.

There's obviously competition in China, and worse competition for profit.
- kids have to work hard and get good grade in hope of getting a good job => profit motive
- companies have to compete with each other, constantly finding new markets, not only in China but also other countries => yet another profit motive.
- products are made en masse and to be sold en masses => once again, profit.

China is now employing industrial capitalism, as USA did it in 40s period and Japan in the 80s, but this time it has the largest population on Earth to support it market and a strong state to control the business men (so we have billionaire party members), and fact the state controls the bank/moneytary supply. It also has adversaries in form of the US, Japan and India, thus the state's opposition can be deferred to being traitors.

But is this enough to uphold capitalism? I think not, as long as the profit motive is present, China will just be another USA, it just doesn't get there yet.

Posted by: Smith | Jan 27 2021 4:01 utc | 102

perhaps a classless bull like Pimpeo is your idea of a statesman or a young fella like O'Biden.
Maybe if he starved a few hundred thousand women and children he would appear strong.
Putin, the greatest Statesman of the century, is in a whole different class.

Posted by: ld | Jan 27 2021 5:02 utc | 103

One last thought. Instead of competition, contemplation. Wisdom and Honor as goals have always placed far higher in esteem than mere riches, and they were once part of Western identity centuries ago, yet remain ever present in what's called the East.

Posted by: karlof1 | Jan 27 2021 6:02 utc | 104

@Hoyeru | Jan 27 2021 3:22 utc | 100

Putin really should be removed. he is old and makes Russia appear weak and defenseless.

Unlike the young strong, vibrant Biden who came to power through impeccable adherence to a lawful democratic process? The russians are following their own formula and it is not crashing and burning like the US.

Your statement puts you in the troll category.

Posted by: Norwegian | Jan 27 2021 6:30 utc | 105

The lockdowns work! - Just not against Covid-19. :(

There are now reports that a range of infectious diseases have become for more common. In particular the regular seasonal flu pandemic didn't take place this winter. But also measles, the common cold and some other ills have sharply declined.

I wonder what the long term effects on the evolution of the influenza virus are. Did this ever happen before, the seasonal flu doesn't take place?

Posted by: m | Jan 27 2021 6:44 utc | 106

Posted by: gottlieb | Jan 26 2021 18:33 utc | 15
(Biden's 'sincere' virtue signalling)

Sickening, ain't it?
He's probably angling for a pre-emptive Nobel Prize to rival Obama's Peace Prize. The Nobel Prize for Irony, perhaps?

Posted by: Hoarsewhisperer | Jan 27 2021 6:52 utc | 107

The 737 MAX crashes were caused by a "chaotic and dangerously unstable production environment", and this has not been corrected.

Former Boeing Employee Says 737 Max "Still Not Fixed"

"The paper underscores the likely role a chaotic and dangerously unstable production environment played in the accidents. Mr. Pierson also puts forth three other plausible accident scenarios not addressed in the accident investigations. The 14-page report includes a timeline and an analysis that ties the two 737 MAX airplane crashes together in ways not previously reported. Most importantly, Mr. Pierson's analysis raises serious doubts as to the safety of the 737 MAX. Alarmingly, the FAA's recertification fixes do not address the problems identified in the report," the report's abstract reads.

Pierson concludes: "We can either investigate these production problems and fix them, or we can wait for another disaster."

Apparently, the decision has been made to wait for another disaster.

Posted by: Norwegian | Jan 27 2021 7:04 utc | 108

Posted by: migueljose | Jan 27 2021 2:38 utc | 97

Thank you. Your life sounds fucking awesome, I am jealous. I would be doing that myself but I have other commitments and she is not the pioneer type. (Yes, I know about wood heat, I used to backpack a lot, I like a minimalist approach to technology.) Decent insulation can make up for lots and lots of hydrocarbon heat and energy, but nobody gets rich that way. Mass produced housing could be much cheaper, better, and more robust, but nobody gets rich that way.

"Silence is better than bullshit."

Posted by: librul | Jan 26 2021 23:23 utc | 74

Yes, I like Escher, & he has a lot of company now. Recursion is fundamental, and also tricky. I know about Dr. Who, but do not watch TV much, never have. I binge watched movies for a couple years, but that was ten years ago. Most everything is crap these days. My wife grew up in Hollywood in the 50s and she fancies acting etc. so she keeps me informed. And I've been watching the collapse of Western Civilization, so of course I can read about all of it.

Posted by: Bemildred | Jan 27 2021 7:18 utc | 109

Always have a great sleeping bag for when the heat goes off. Be this little prepared.

Posted by: blues | Jan 27 2021 9:49 utc | 110

So, Sanofi and Merck announce they stop research on a traditional vaccin; Sanofi was given public funding for research and now announces they are cutting jobs,but will get the special consolation prize of packaging the Pfizer and Moderna vaccins to accelerate their production.
= Modified RNA for all! (or for the EU white elderly mainly?)

And yes, since the EU has started with the elderly and moved to +60, we will soon see all those back on their tours and cruises while the youth will have the choice between suicide and learning code to have a nice online job from home.

Posted by: Mina | Jan 27 2021 9:56 utc | 111

@ Posted by: Hoyeru | Jan 27 2021 3:22 utc | 100

'Biden and USA will interpret that as yet another sign of weakness on Putin's part'

While i sympathise with your sentiment, i'm not sure you have really thought this one through, which is probably why a man like Putin is in charge of Russia, and not you..

It won't matter one bit what Putin says to Biden, certainly not in the way of threats, most of which he could not back with actions, certainly without exposing Russia's operational limits in Syria and compromising Russia's long term strategic interests anyway.

Just as Russia, Iran et al do what they want regardless of sanctions, threats etc, so would the US, and to an even greater extent, since they are top dog and have a record of backing up their threats with actions.

Rather than confront directly and lose, (which, short of nuclear war, Russia would 100% lose in the ME as it is outnumbered 50/1 by US forces alone) Putin's best successes have come when he found common ground and provided a 3rd option, for example, stopping Obama from invading Syria by destroying their chemical arsenal, or using Turkey's opposition to Kurds to drive a wedge into Nato's plans and so on... so it makes sense he will be angling towards mutually beneficial solutions, rather than play a US-style threatening game, certainly not in the media space anyway.

Putin and Biden both know Russia can stand up to the US on a strategic level, but that has operational limits, meaning, the level at which the US/Russia confrontation is playing out in Syria does not warrant Nuclear War, but Russia is outnumbered and anything it does to US troops can be done 10x worse to them at Latakia and Hmeymin, and then what?

The US benefits from many proxies that harass Russian troops. As far as i know, Russia does not have any proxies, and Syrian troops are fair game as far as the US military and international media are concerned. The closest would be Iran's proxies, and even they have been given limits. All this talk of attacks on 'US convoys' in Iraq are just Iraqis killing Iraqis, no one is touching US soldiers anywhere for fear of direct retaliation on Iran. So what they gonna do?

Whether we like it or not, Russia is punching well above its weight, sure, it has nukes and a formidable military, but it is not the empire of the Soviet Union, while the US has become even more powerful compared to the cold war days. Can you imagine an incident like Beirut 1983 resulting in a US withdrawal today? No, it would be the start of a new war. Most importantly, unlike the first Gulf War in 1991, the US would not need 6 months to send troops and equipment over there, they already have enough hardware in the ME already to start WW3. So what you gonna do?

We really don't know what was actually said. We will just have to wait and see...

I think Putin is aware of the spectre of the Soviet Union's past, and has always tried to counter the perception of Russia being an 'evil empire' by expressing himself diplomatically and appearing mild and reasonable in the media. What you may perceive as weakness, could also be perceived as less threatening to others. Regardless, it is just PR. Those who need to know are well aware of Russia's capabilities and not to cross their red lines, at least more so today than prior to 2015.

You may disagree with how he publicly promotes Russia's interests, but one has to also admire Putin's ability in exposing who the real evil empire actually is by just giving them enough rope to hang themselves by. You'd almost think the man studied judo or something...

Posted by: Et Tu | Jan 27 2021 10:02 utc | 112

Hoyeru @100: "Yet another stupid thing Putin did, telling Biden that normalization of Russian-US relations would benefit everyone..."

You don't "stand tough" against a heavily armed delusional psychopath (or nation of such delusional psychopaths) who can end civilization if they choose. Instead you make soothing sounds and pretend to agree with the psychopath's delusions to try and talk the psycho down from their violence.

The position of the American empire is precarious, and despite its delusions of exceptionality the citizenry of the empire and its leadership sense that instability somewhat. For many in the empire it is better to end civilization altogether than to lose the #1 spot squatting on top of that civilization. Because of this it can be advantageous to the rest of the world if America is allowed to continue with the illusion of being Master of the World until the empire declines to where it is less of a threat to humanity.

Putin murmuring sweet nothings to the psychopath empire helps put the empire at ease and lessens the probability of catastrophe. Sure, the empire will continue with its sanctions and novichok poisoning nonsense and color revolution attempts and things like that, but the world can deal with those, particularly as dollar hegemony crumbles. The time to get stern with the empire will be after the balance of power has shifted away from them sufficiently.

Posted by: William Gruff | Jan 27 2021 11:36 utc | 113

More food for the Owl of Minerva:

Cutting off stimulus checks to Americans earning over $75,000 could be wise, new data suggests, by Heather Long (WaPo)

Interesting how perspectives change after your political party takes power...

Posted by: vk | Jan 27 2021 12:10 utc | 114

Well, well, well...

‘Solidarity Is Failing’: E.U. and U.K. Fight Over Scarce Vaccines

It's easy to have solidarity when the pot is big. When it is small, however...

As we say here in the Third World: when money gets scarce, love is gone.

Posted by: vk | Jan 27 2021 12:17 utc | 115

It just dawned on me that China's superior 5g (now 6g) has massive implications for military command and control networks.

Up 'til now I've alway thought of 5/6g in terms of civilian use, however it's clear that the PLA/N is now fully capable of implementing faster, more resilient and therefore more effective C4SIR networks.

This is a game changer, far beyond the reality of Hypersonic MIRVs, carrier killers and nukes it means the PLA/N is now effectively on equal footing in a conventional war with the US.

I suspect this is the real reason the US wants to crush China's 5g industry.

I wonder what the effect of quantum communication networks will be on future warfare, given that China is in the lead there as well.

Posted by: Arch Bungle | Jan 27 2021 12:19 utc | 116

Fooling exactly zero persons:

US government's attitude toward China hard to change: Global Times editorial

It doesn't matter how deep the blue of ms. Jen Psaki's dress is, China will not change course.

Posted by: vk | Jan 27 2021 12:39 utc | 117

When it comes to communication and network, it should be quite obvious that Elon Musk and SpaceX massive satellite network system isn't exactly set up as a civilian infrastructure first of all. Sure, it's supposed to bring internet connexion all over the world. What it means first is that it will bring rapid communication the world over to US military and assets.

Posted by: Clueless Joe | Jan 27 2021 13:49 utc | 118

Hoyeru @100: "Yet another stupid thing Putin did,"

Everyone knows that Russians worship and study the game of Chess.

According to the renowned Chinese general Sun Tzu, "Strategy without tactics is the slowest route to victory. Tactics without strategy is the noise before defeat." Indeed, relying solely on your opponent falling for a tactical shot might work well for beginners but is a losing approach for more advanced players.

(more at the worthy link)

Hoyeru @100: "Yet another stupid thing Putin did,"

Posted by: librul | Jan 27 2021 13:57 utc | 119

A true people's revolution happening before our eyes in India:

Call me a pervert but as I watch this video I can't help thinking of the bull run at Pamplona. Sometimes, the bull gets a fighting chance ...

Posted by: Arch Bungle | Jan 27 2021 13:58 utc | 120

Posted by: Arch Bungle | Jan 27 2021 13:58 utc | 120

Yes, glad to see they have finally decided to fight back. That's what a revolution looks like. No more talk.

Posted by: Bemildred | Jan 27 2021 14:14 utc | 121

According to Figure 4 of the IMF report, the US lost the least from the Covid crisis as compared to its pre-Covid trajectory. It lost even less than China.
The biggest losses from the Covid crisis are for non-western countries ex-China.
Now, how is this possible? Well, this is what you get when you can print 5 trillion dollars at will.
Overall impact of Covid crisis: it slows down multipolarity in GDP terms, contrary to previous estimates.
Posted by: Passer by | Jan 26 2021 20:11 utc | 33

HA HA HA! That is an even worse joke than the pre-pandemic "pandemic preparedness" chart that put US and Europe well ahead and China lagging behind. If that is what the IMF write, they should all be sent back to kindergarten. Or else a nice strict re-education camp. Nothing but bullshit.

When they claim projected "real GDP" losses for USA 5%, Spain 6%, UK 4.5%, China 8% and India of all places 11.5%, you know they just pulled it out of their backsides. As for Fig 4: US making even less loss compared to China??? What king of blind retarded idiot is going to believe that crap?

Posted by: BM | Jan 27 2021 14:21 utc | 122

Now you know that western GDP calculation is bullshit.

Posted by: Smith | Jan 27 2021 14:23 utc | 123

Posted by: BM | Jan 27 2021 14:21 utc | 122

If those "experts" on China were right, China would have collapsed for like 50 times already.

Posted by: J W | Jan 27 2021 14:39 utc | 124

Arch Bungle @ 120

Read the comments on that twitter thread you posted. Bulls is about right. The Indian elite thinks the farmers are just cattle. It is refreshing to see that level of honesty.

Posted by: oldhippie | Jan 27 2021 14:54 utc | 125

Jesus, Japan is really going down the drain fast.

Posted by: Smith | Jan 27 2021 14:58 utc | 126

Posted by: BM | Jan 27 2021 14:21 utc | 122

It is possible when one can print trillions of dollars of the world main reserve currency at will. Because in this way, you basically steal from the rest of the world.

According to the IMF estimate, the pandemic (and all the associated money printing) made it *harder* for China to overtake the US.

The US is majically the least economically affected from the Pandemic compared to anyone else.

This clearly shows that the US is a parasite on the Global Economy.

Posted by: Passer by | Jan 27 2021 14:58 utc | 127

Posted by: oldhippie | Jan 27 2021 14:54 utc | 125

Read the comments on that twitter thread you posted. Bulls is about right.

Oh my, I hadn't even noticed that, so captivated was I by the spectacle.

My amusement turns to mild disgust:

"Dont know his name but he is wearing Sikh turban and throwing our national flag from bridge to gutter/canal."

... Of course, a rag is more important than a Dalit's life ...

And another:

"Pathetic and people are saying they were pushed too far,this was planned execution it's not response of anger,these police didn't create law yet they had to face these hooligans"

... well, that's what happens when you serve as footsoldiers of the aristocracy ...

The Indian elite thinks the farmers are just cattle. It is refreshing to see that level of honesty.

Odd, and here I thought the Indian elite worshipped cattle? Seems the Cow is not as holy as we thought ...

Posted by: Arch Bungle | Jan 27 2021 15:04 utc | 128

Arch Bungle | Jan 27 2021 13:58 utc | 120

oh my, the Indians are on the warpath /snark

Posted by: dan of steele | Jan 27 2021 15:08 utc | 129

At first they were adamant against its use. Then they wanted to conduct time consuming trials and now they’ve relented following an outcry by medical professionals on the frontline in the fight against Covid-19:

Durban – The South African Health Products Regulatory Authority (Sahpra), while giving ivermectin the green light to be used in the treatment of Covid-19 in “controlled compassionate use”, has warned the public to be careful about self-prescribing the medication as there was still too little data on its efficacy.

Speaking at a press conference on Wednesday, Professor Helen Rees, chairperson of Sahpra said the evidence for ivermectin “isn’t strong” and that was why they were taking the controlled and compassionate use of the drug.

Ivermectin: Why Sahpra is granting ’controlled compassionate use’ for Covid-19 treatment

The Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation will NOT be happy.

Posted by: Down South | Jan 27 2021 15:14 utc | 130

Dan of Steele

Do you see what you just did to yourself? Have been expecting something like that.

Posted by: oldhippie | Jan 27 2021 15:20 utc | 131

Posted by: Down South | Jan 27 2021 15:14 utc | 130

Ivermectin: Why Sahpra is granting ’controlled compassionate use’ for Covid-19 treatment

Somehow the use of the phrase ’controlled compassionate use’ reminds me of euthanasia ...

Posted by: Arch Bungle | Jan 27 2021 15:22 utc | 132

Passer By @ 127

The day is fast approaching when US prints another trillion and no one even notices.

Posted by: oldhippie | Jan 27 2021 15:25 utc | 133

BM @122

Basically the US prints $trillions, hands it out to their oligarchs, and tacks the amount printed directly onto their GDP. The IMF, being monetary fetishists (they are bankers; what more can you expect?) treats that as economic growth.

Other than the fact that the empire is stealing from everyone who has dollars when they do that, what's the big deal? If it makes the empire's leadership feel better I say go with it for now. It disguises the empire's real economic decay and that lessens the chances of the imperial aristocracy doing something rash to maintain their power.

That said, I cannot believe that the empire's elites don't see what is happening here. They have to know that they are hollowing out the US dollar's global reserve currency status.

Posted by: William Gruff | Jan 27 2021 15:27 utc | 134

Thinking back over the Beirut Port blast;

To date there has been been no clear evidence that it might have been due to foul play.

However I happened to be looking at these old Nasrallah speeches where he discusses a potential attack on the ammonia storage tanks in Haifa:

Transcript excerpt:

On the issue of ammonia – the ammonia storage tanks in Haifa. A few days ago an order was issued – that within ten days the ammonia storage facilities in Haifa must be removed. Okay, but why? Those tanks have been there for decades…Because the resistance spoke about these tanks and how they (practically form) a nuclear bomb (if targeted).

There are those that came to point out to us further, that there is a ship that delivers the ammonia, and hands it out to the Haifa storage facility and other (facilities) – if I had said regarding the ammonia storage facility that it (practically equates to) a nuclear bomb, they (themselves) said that the ship that comes from the sea – carrying ammonia to occupied Palestine – it (practically equates to) five nuclear bombs. Okay – how can this ship escape from us?

Let’s assume they empty the storage facility in Haifa. Firstly, wherever they take these tanks of ammonia, we will reach them God willing. Of course in Haifa it is easier, without a doubt – it is closer and easier. However, wherever they take these tanks we will reach them. Okay (let’s assume) you hid the tanks, where will you hide the ship? Under which wave will you hide it?

Thus this enemy is before a resistance that has capabilities and the courage to use these capabilities in any real confrontation – and they will carry out a thousand calculations (before launching war). And on this basis, if they want to empty the storage (facility) – of course the people of Haifa thanked Hezbollah (for causing the removal of this facility), (saying) ‘we have been calling for this for 20-30 years and nobody answered us.’

Today, on the anniversary of (the martyrdom of) the ‘leaders of victory’, I call on the Israeli enemy to not only empty the ammonia storage facility in Haifa, but also to shut down the Dimona nuclear reactor – to shut down the Dimona nuclear reactor. T

In the absence of precise and direct evidence, intuition leads me to believe that the port blast was engineered, and engineered by israel or the allies of israel.

Posted by: Arch Bungle | Jan 27 2021 16:26 utc | 135

karlof1 @ 73 ---good post but one disagreement: eliminate the death penalty totally. It dehumanizes this nation. No taking of human life, ever.

Posted by: juliania | Jan 27 2021 16:36 utc | 136

james @ 78, well, all my folk just think I'm queer (in the classical sense!) though I have hopes for my grandchildren. And be careful what you accomplish in dream fulfillment as our wintertime is upon us, ice inside all my windows (fortunately I don't have many) this morning. You are correct, though, it is an exceptionally beautiful area. Proof is that I always missed being here more on my ventures back to New Zeland than I did reversewise, so there's that. Plus Los Alamos just over the horizon, of course. Used to be a boy's ranch, needs to go back to being that.

Posted by: juliania | Jan 27 2021 16:46 utc | 137

This is just hilarious:

As another dramatic day shaped up for the battle between retail investors and hedge funds in the U.S., shares of some of Europe’s most shorted stocks were climbing.

Shares of French real estate investment trust Klépierre surged 17%, one of the Stoxx Europe 600 best performers on Wednesday. According to public filing tracker website WhaleWisdom, Klépierre is one of the most shorted stocks in France, behind airline Air France-KLM and retailer Casino Guichard-Perrachon, whose shares were 1.5% and 4.3% higher, respectively.

Another shorted stock, commercial real estate group Unibail-Rodamco-Westfield was up 17%.

The moves come as videogames retailer GameStop surged another 150% early on Wednesday. Shares have gained 1,864% in January as retail investors, organizing via forums such as Reddit’s WallStreetBets, sought to boost a group of heavily shorted stocks.

The GameStop Phenomenon? Some of Europe’s Most Heavily Shorted Stocks Are Rising

This is all very 1929-like now. Biden gets to be Herbert Hoover.

Posted by: Bemildred | Jan 27 2021 16:47 utc | 138

Sorry for misspelling, computer a bit stiff this morning.

Posted by: juliania | Jan 27 2021 16:48 utc | 139

Those firestoves you sleep on have always intrigued me, migueljose @ 97. The pueblo tribes where I live found value in apartmentstyle homes as the southwestern sun is an asset, even in wintertime. Cliff dwellers also. They were way ahead on solar designed homes. Mine isn't one of those but a former resident did enclose the back patio for which I am extremely grateful. When the sun shines I am good to go. And extremely grateful that there are less planes flying now than before the virus shrunk travel. Lots quieter!

Posted by: juliania | Jan 27 2021 17:14 utc | 140

For those interested in China's Space Program, this article provides a good update on what we can expect China to do this year:

"The CASC also revealed that Long March 11 will carry out four to five space launch missions this year, and apart from one from the ground launch pad, they will all be from sea platforms....

"The Long March 11 carrier rocket scheduling more than one sea launch a year would prove that China's seaborne space technology has greatly matured, expanding the service scope of China's space with lower costs and higher flexibility, Song Zhongping, a space observer and TV commentator, told the Global Times on Wednesday.

"In theory, with its much improved sea launch capabilities, Long March-11 would be able to carry out missions from much wider water coverage, whether it is along China's coast or even international waters, meaning more orbit options and more agile launch windows, Wang said."

Here's a NASA page with a still image and short video of a Long March 11 sea launch which was rather impressive. If you've been following along, you'll have noted the degree of urgency in their program as reflected by the great numbers of launches and the rapidity planned for their space station's completion. And in case you missed it, Roscosmos is planning a moon station with China for the latter third of this decade.

Posted by: karlof1 | Jan 27 2021 18:09 utc | 141

@ migueljose | Jan 27 2021 2:38 utc | 97... thanks for drawing my attention to those stoves... i am going to look into them further... much appreciated!

@ juliania @137.... thanks for a more personal insight into where you live! stay warm.. you will have to look into those stoves migueljose draws our attention to! it is presently around zero here with a very little snow on the ground... so far - not much of any snow, except on higher altitudes.... cheers james

Posted by: james | Jan 27 2021 19:05 utc | 142

In what ought to be a moral outrage, the Outlaw US Empire has appointed an African-American to the post of UN Ambassador so she can accuse China of Genocide of Uyghurs. Never mind that this is the epitome of projection given its genocide of Native-Americans and involvement in the genocidal African Slave Trade, and that it breaks the UN Charter daily and really ought to be expelled. We've already proven the utter baselessness of that claim, but those in charge of Biden don't seem to be very smart. The talk in China for the past several months has been about its decoupling from the Outlaw US Empire, and if the Empire pushes this BigLie, it will pay a huge price as China has proven it can do without the Empire, but the Empire sorely relies on China as assessments of Trump's Trade War prove consistently. Furthermore, such a move makes an international currency reset all the more probable, and that will be extremely harmful given the Empire's current condition.

Posted by: karlof1 | Jan 27 2021 19:13 utc | 143

Davos speech is online in english, and even though the final remarks are directed to Europe they apply to the US as well.

Europe and Russia are absolutely natural partners from the point of view of the economy, research, technology and spatial development for European culture, since Russia, being a country of European culture, is a little larger than the entire EU in terms of territory. Russia’s resources and human potential are enormous. I will not go over everything that is positive in Europe, which can also benefit the Russian Federation.

And that was expressed with moderation, many think that the true Europe is Russia, with her capital city Moscow the biggest city in Europe, with seven hills like Rome. But not only size matters, culture too.

We are ready for this, we want this, and we will strive to make this happen. But love is impossible if it is declared only by one side. It must be mutual.

What else can be said, Vlad is starting to sound like a Beatle with his “All You Need is Love” tará tarará…

Posted by: Paco | Jan 27 2021 19:40 utc | 144

One other important fact about the Chinese that they practice but don't boast about. Over the 4,000 years of governing a very large region filled with a great mass of people competing for a finite amount of resources, the Chinese have gained the wisdom that to have harmony the collective competitive ambitions of the masses must be molded into cooperative pursuits such that all prosper and advance together as a collective, much like a colony of bees act as a collective to advance the wellbeing of all its members. IMO, this is the Chinese's greatest triumph as they've been able to see how to overcome humanity's natural competitive drive instilled by Nature that can be very destructive as we see here in the West, and actually make that competitive spirit further a cooperative collective. The Chinese aren't the only human culture to make this achievement, but they're certainly the most visible and important. This wisdom is a very big component of the ideological divide that the West must overcome if it's to prosper in the world's long term future where cooperative collectives will become the norm, while Tooth and Claw competition becomes Taboo.

Posted by: karlof1 | Jan 27 2021 19:42 utc | 145

Putin addresses Davos and World. I found Schwab's into to be of importance:

"Russia is an important global power, and there’s a long-standing tradition of Russia’s participation in the World Economic Forum. At this moment in history, where the world has a unique and short window of opportunity to move from an age of confrontation to an age of cooperation, the ability to hear your voice, the voice of the President of the Russian Federation, is essential. Even and especially in times characterised by differences, disputes and protests, constructive and honest dialogue to address our common challenges is better than isolation and polarisation. [My Emphasis]

Doesn't Schwab contradict himself, and from what hat did he pull his "window of opportunity"?

I've yet to go further into the transcript; although from media reports, Putin seems to have posed some excellent questions and observations.

Posted by: karlof1 | Jan 27 2021 19:57 utc | 146

I am reading Putin's speech to Davos that karlof1 links to in comment # 144 and below is a quote from it. My challenge to you when reading it is to replace the tech giant references with global private finance

I would like to emphasise one more important point. Modern technological giants, especially digital companies, have started playing an increasing role in the life of society. Much is being said about this now, especially regarding the events that took place during the election campaign in the US. They are not just some economic giants. In some areas, they are de facto competing with states. Their audiences consist of billions of users that pass a considerable part of their lives in these eco systems.

In the opinion of these companies, their monopoly is optimal for organising technological and business processes. Maybe so but society is wondering whether such monopolism meets public interests. Where is the border between successful global business, in-demand services and big data consolidation and the attempts to manage society at one’s own discretion and in a tough manner, replace legal democratic institutions and essentially usurp or restrict the natural right of people to decide for themselves how to live, what to choose and what position to express freely? We have just seen all of these phenomena in the US and everyone understands what I am talking about now. I am confident that the overwhelming majority of people share this position, including the participants in the current event.

When is the world going to have the conversation I keep asking for?

Posted by: psychohistorian | Jan 27 2021 20:20 utc | 147

Really, this is hilarious:

NASDAQ temporarily shuts down stock trading after internet trolls destroy hedge fund with GameStop stock

Seems to be two hedge funds actually.

Posted by: Bemildred | Jan 27 2021 20:33 utc | 148

Typical Northern Hemisphere-centrism! On Jan 26 (so-called 'Australia Day') it was 41C in Western Sydney. At 2am it was still 28C. Sydney Airport was the hottest place on the planet that afternoon @ 46C. I woke in a pool of sweat barely cooled by a lacklustre fan trying its best to move warm air around. b, your inconvenience sounds like paradise...

Posted by: Patroklos | Jan 27 2021 21:08 utc | 149

@146 Bemildred

That is one juicy story. What a revolution that Reddit free-speech collaboration can lawfully act to disrupt Wall Street, after all the secret collusion of that place. And of course the big traders want this competition criminalized - otherwise they lose their walled garden rigged market.

Love it.

Posted by: Grieved | Jan 27 2021 21:09 utc | 150

@134 William Gruff - "They have to know that they are hollowing out the US dollar's global reserve currency status."

I have long assumed the plan is to replace the world's reserve currency with the Special Drawing Right (SDR) of the IMF. That's what it's there for, and has long been openly discussed as such a possible instrument.

Jim Rickards has said that when (not if) the SDR takes its place as the main reserve currency, this event will flow an additional $100 Trillion of monetary capacity into the world economy, enough to soak up a lot of debt.

I assume two things. One is that the USD will simply take a different portion of the basket of currencies that make up the SDR (and presumably the Yuan makes a commensurate adjustment as well) - so that essentially all that's happening is something akin to receivership, where intense negotiations involving central banks and perhaps sovereigns will result in a new equation of currency exchange values.

The second thing I assume is that large banking forces don't much care about principal, and all they live for is interest. Today's principal is largely fictitious, while the interest payments from the indebted are true life blood. So, as with any indebtedness, it's completely possible to restructure the loan, so long as - and to ensure that - some kind of interest payment continues to be paid to the banks.

We discussed a while back that, if "the spice must flow" in this modern geopolitical world, then what exactly is the spice? My offer at the time - which I stand by still - was that interest payments to large creditor forces are all that really count to those forces. The rest of the world's arrangements can burn, as long as they get their compound-interest blood, calculated daily.

Posted by: Grieved | Jan 27 2021 21:23 utc | 151

Posted by: Grieved | Jan 27 2021 21:09 utc | 148

It's going to be outlawed by tomorrow afternoon, just watch. There already appear to be copy cats. The "equities trading firms" cannot allow this sort of thing to become common. Having the sheep able to trade the same way they do (by playing the Market, not the stock) would destroy them in no time flat. All because the peons have a way to communicate, they will fix that.

Posted by: Bemildred | Jan 27 2021 21:23 utc | 152

@ 146 bemildrid.. that is a hell of a story! everyone knows wall st is a ponzi scheme, but it sure is fun seeing these hedge fund con artists taking a hit.. it is always the other way around where main street gets the hit from wall st.. this is the reverse.. i am sure we will be hearing more on this story ''short'' ly...

Posted by: james | Jan 27 2021 21:26 utc | 153

Posted by: james | Jan 27 2021 21:26 utc | 151

Yes, oh my, I'm sure there is a good script in there somewhere too. Randy Newman already wrote the sound track:

Posted by: Bemildred | Jan 27 2021 21:44 utc | 154

Recursion V. II


you cannot locate The Index File
But have an index file
in which you could look up The Index File

you would then locate The Index File
in the index file
under index files

unless the index file uses abbreviations
in which case you would locate The Index File
in the index file


Posted by: librul | Jan 27 2021 22:26 utc | 155

RE: Game Stock short selling Wall Street play ( Bemildred | Jan 27 2021 20:33 utc | 146))

Joe Leonard YT explains:

📈🚀Gamestop and Reddit DESTROY Melvin Capital With This One Weird Trick! (23 min)

Posted by: gm | Jan 27 2021 22:56 utc | 156

Bemildred #146

GAME STOP !! oh the irony of that post. Magnificent news. The power of organising the commons :))

Posted by: uncle tungsten | Jan 27 2021 23:04 utc | 157

@ Bemildred with the link from comment # 146 ...thanks

What a hoot!!! Unfortunately it will not last.

All the Big Boys have to do is turn their HFT machine on Reddit narrative directions and they will make the killing back. That said, war is hell and it will get worse.

Posted by: psychohistorian | Jan 27 2021 23:06 utc | 158

William Gruff

"basically the US prints $trillions, hands it out to their oligarchs, and tacks the amount printed directly onto their GDP. The IMF, being monetary fetishists (they are bankers; what more can you expect?) treats that as economic growth.

Other than the fact that the empire is stealing from everyone who has dollars when they do that"

I would argue that a lot of that money goes to buy goods from China and elsewhere, so not sure if I would characterize US $ printing as theft, other than via benefiting Wall Street disproportionately.

Posted by: schmoe | Jan 27 2021 23:07 utc | 159

Bemildred #150

All because the peons have a way to communicate, they will fix that.

Might be hard to fix if people can get internet link via one of the competitor nations global satellite services.

One Belt One Road via the sky pilot.

Posted by: uncle tungsten | Jan 27 2021 23:17 utc | 160

not that I understand, but...

GameStock stock market situation is causing some kind of melt-down...

White House and SEC step in and NASDAQ CEO suggests halting trading as Reddit mob sends GameStop stock skyrocketing: Wall Street calls for crackdown on amateurs led by YouTuber 'Roaring Kitty' that have drained billions from hedge funds
GameStop shares rose another 130% on Wednesday amid a Reddit buying frenzy
The struggling company runs a chain of video game stores across the country
Group WallStreetBets is leading charge to inflate stock and punish hedge funds
GameStop stock is up 1,700% since January 1 in run that hurt short sellers
Hedge funds Citron and Melvin Capital likely lost billions as the shares rose
But GameStop's three largest shareholders have gained $3B in recent moves
They include board member Ryan Cohen, whose shares are up more than $2B
GameStop CEO Geroge Sherman is up $500M and investor Donald Foss $800M
TD Ameritrade instituted unprecedented restrictions on GameStop stock
Wall Street investors express alarm and say they have never seen anything like it
When the bubble collapses all of the shareholder gains could be wiped out
Biden's press secretary says that his team is 'monitoring the situation'

Posted by: gm | Jan 27 2021 23:26 utc | 161

Bemildred #146

It will be a big warning to the guys that short stocks.

A similar thing happened when the Hunt brothers tried to corner the silver market.

The way they saved the banksters then was to change the rules of the game.
They stopped allowing buy orders unless you were covering a short.

The hunts went for over one billion on that little fiasco.

Posted by: arby | Jan 28 2021 0:07 utc | 162

Lovely developments after my Putin at Davos comment. The Parasites ought to be raped for Trillions. Hopefully, b will write up an article centered around the speeches by Xi and Putin and their extremely frank remarks on the state of the world.

Posted by: karlof1 | Jan 28 2021 0:41 utc | 163

......China will just be another USA, it just doesn't get there yet.

Posted by: Smith | Jan 27 2021 4:01 utc | 102

FYI, China has already vaccinated 22.76 million till now . People who first receive the free Covid-19 vaccines are the front essential workers, such as average workers working in cold chain imported food industry, cashiers at supermarkets, waiters and waitresses at restaurants, bus drivers, lugger handlers and cleaners at airports, inspectors at custom, community workers, etc., apart from doctors and nurses.

Do you think "another USA" in-making capitalist country would provide this kind of care to its average citizen ahead of millionaires and billionaires?

Posted by: lulu | Jan 28 2021 1:01 utc | 164

Hooray!! The long awaited book by Dr. Hudson, Cold War 2.0. The Geopolitical Economics of Finance Capitalism vs. Industrial Capitalism, will soon become available, and an essay based on its first chapter is at the link. One tiny taste:

"These rentier dynamics are the opposite of what Marx described as industrial capitalism’s laws of motion. German banking was indeed financing heavy industry under Bismarck, in association with the Reichsbank and military. But elsewhere, bank lending rarely has financed new tangible means of production. What promised to be a democratic and ultimately socialist dynamic has relapsed back toward feudalism and debt peonage, with the financial class today playing the role that the landlord class did in post-medieval times."

I see the primary target audience are the Chinese as a translation will be published this year for they are the ones most needing to be reminded of the target on their backs.

Posted by: karlof1 | Jan 28 2021 1:14 utc | 165

@ lulu

Probably, it would be similar to FDR's New Deal. This is the "honeymoon" phase.

It's an effort to care for the working class, but it doesn't solve the profit motive behind the capitalist system.

Until China starts making stuff available for free (food, healthcare, long term employment, education), I wouldn't be holding my breath. Vietnam also has the same problems since the switch of the 80s, which I hope we will improve in the future.

Also, regarding the GAMESTOP stunt, corpos are already going in to "fix" it:

It seems only the elites can make money out of thin air, but a bunch of pleb nerds can't. Kudos to them though.

Posted by: Smith | Jan 28 2021 1:21 utc | 166

Those who may be tricked into believing that China doesn't care for its population may wish to read Vijay Prashad's latest work on the India uprising, which, in illustrating how farmers around the world go hungry and mal-nourished because of the corporate systems they're trapped in, offers this note in passing about the Chinese system:

Innovations in public delivery of food are essential. In 1988, China’s government set up the ‘vegetable basket programme’, in which mayors have to account every two years for the availability of affordable and safe non-grain foods (fresh produce is key here). Hinterlands of cities and towns had to protect their farmland so that non-grain foods could be grown nearby. For instance, with a population of eight million, Nanjing was 90% self-sufficient in green vegetables in 2012. The existence of the ‘vegetable basket programme’ enabled China’s cities and towns to ensure that the population continued to eat fresh produce during the COVID-19 lockdown. Such programmes need to be developed in other countries, where the food industry is driven by profit through the sale of cheap calories; these cheap calories have a very expensive, negative impact on society.

That article, at the Tricontinental, is worth reading entirely:
My Wish Is That You Win This Fight for Truth

Posted by: Grieved | Jan 28 2021 1:49 utc | 167

Below is a quote from Putin's speech to the Davos crowd that details the priorities of Russia

I would like to point out four key priorities, as I see them. This might be old news, but since Klaus has allowed me to present Russia’s position, my position, I will certainly do so.

First, everyone must have comfortable living conditions, including housing and affordable transport, energy and public utility infrastructure. Plus environmental welfare, something that must not be overlooked.

Second, everyone must be sure that they will have a job that can ensure sustainable growth of income and, hence, decent standards of living. Everyone must have access to an effective system of lifelong education, which is absolutely indispensable now and which will allow people to develop, make a career and receive a decent pension and social benefits upon retirement.

Third, people must be confident that they will receive high-quality and effective medical care whenever necessary, and that the national healthcare system will guarantee access to modern medical services.

Fourth, regardless of the family income, children must be able to receive a decent education and realise their potential. Every child has potential.

This is the only way to guarantee the cost-effective development of the modern economy, in which people are perceived as the end, rather than the means. Only those countries capable of attaining progress in at least these four areas will facilitate their own sustainable and all-inclusive development. These areas are not exhaustive, and I have just mentioned the main aspects.

A strategy, also being implemented by my country, hinges on precisely these approaches. Our priorities revolve around people, their families, and they aim to ensure demographic development, to protect the people, to improve their well-being and to protect their health. We are now working to create favourable conditions for worthy and cost-effective work and successful entrepreneurship and to ensure digital transformation as the foundation of a high-tech future for the entire country, rather than that of a narrow group of companies.

What countries of the West have similar priorities?

Posted by: psychohistorian | Jan 28 2021 1:50 utc | 168

The only countries that actually delivered these promises was the USSR and presently Cuba. I'm not familiar with North Korea enough to determine if they still have that or not.

But sadly, Russia, China and Vietnam have not fulfilled these priorities.

Posted by: Smith | Jan 28 2021 2:15 utc | 169

Posted by: schmoe | Jan 27 2021 23:07 utc | 157

The money mostly do not go for buying chinese goods, as trickle down in the US does not work. The poor get poorer, the rich get richer. The rich do not consume a lot. The money goes into the US financial system - stock bubbles, bond bubbles, etc. For raising military budgets. As well as for paying off exploding federal debt.

Posted by: Passer by | Jan 28 2021 2:15 utc | 170

Posted by: schmoe | Jan 27 2021 23:07 utc | 157

The chinese themselves are critical of US money printing.

US financial hegemony makes world pay for its losses to COVID-19

Posted by: Passer by | Jan 28 2021 2:19 utc | 171

@ Passer by | Jan 28 2021 2:19 utc | 169 with the Global Times link

Thanks for that. I didn't know China's forex reserve was that high.

The point I would add to the posting is that this financial rape of other countries has been going on at least since 2008 at the current rate and since 1971 when the Reserve Currency became fiat instead of gold backed. There are those that talk about the petro dollar after 1971 but there was never any Reserve Currency type of fixed rate that existed for the US dollar before 1971.

I think that it is possible that in 2021 that the US has to purchase more of its debt than is purchased by foreign countries. It is the stopping of buying US Treasuries by others that will bring the system down for sure....and then the debtmageddeon unfolds....will any stand up to the derivative holders?

Posted by: psychohistorian | Jan 28 2021 2:36 utc | 172

Posted by: Et Tu | Jan 27 2021 10:02 utc | 112

>>Rather than confront directly and lose, (which, short of nuclear war, Russia would 100% lose in the ME as it is outnumbered 50/1 by US forces alone).

Is this another ignorant merican? The ME is closer to the Russian mainland than the US, which means that the US will be wiped out there. Russia has escalation dominance there. Including in Europe, if the US tries to start something stupid there.

Because it is near the russian mainland, which means that it can be saturated with thousands of hypersonic missiles the US does not even have.

Russia can saturate 2500 km + and in some cases 5000 km + from its territory with enourmous amount of long range missiles and anti-ship missiles. It can wipe out Europe itself and everything in it just by conventional weapons.

In half an hour of a conflict with Russia in the Middle East, all US bases and ships in the area will be targeted for a wipe out by large missile salvos of thousands of missiles fired from the mainland, ships and bombers, with not much time to react (it has 5 minutes time to react to unstoppable hypersonic missile barrage capable of hitting moving targets).

It is called a revolution in military affairs - by Andrei Martyanov.

Posted by: Passer by | Jan 28 2021 2:41 utc | 173

More to my comment # 170 about the US having to buy its own debt

Below is a quote from a Wall Street on Parade posting on that very subject.

Last March we reported the following:

“According to the U.S. Treasury, as of February 29, 2020, there was $16.9 trillion in marketable U.S. Treasury securities outstanding. Of that amount, at the end of February, the Federal Reserve held $2.47 trillion or 14.6 percent – making it, by far, the largest single holder of U.S. Treasuries anywhere in the world.”

As of December 31, 2020, there was $20.98 trillion in marketable U.S. Treasury securities outstanding. According to the Fed’s H.4.1 for January 20, 2021, the Fed owns $4.74 trillion of those or 22.6 percent.

According to those numbers the US is already buying and holding a rapidly increasing percentage of US debt.

This is the indicator the elite of empire do not want you to see. It shows that other countries are buying less US Treasuries and hence their operative level of trust is going down....don't listen to what they say, watch what they do with their money.

When is someone in public going to make note that the emperor is not wearing any clothes?

Posted by: psychohistorian | Jan 28 2021 3:21 utc | 174

Passer by 168

"The money mostly do not go for buying chinese goods, as trickle down in the US does not work. The poor get poorer, the rich get richer. The rich do not consume a lot. The money goes into the US financial system".
Maybe we are talking about matters of degree, but there was a surge in purchases of tangible goods at various points after stimulus funds were released and the US importation of Chinese goods has continued largely unabated despite the US recession. No one could disagree with your comment that, at least on a per capita basis, the wealthy and especially those in the financial sector went from being possibly wiped out in late March (before the Fed intervention) to receiving massive gains. Also, if there was no bailout and the western world went into a depression, China would no doubt be hurt as well via less exports, at least over the short term.

Posted by: schmoe | Jan 28 2021 4:27 utc | 175

@ psychohistorian | Jan 28 2021 3:21 utc | 172... is the usa holding it, or is the federal reserve holding it?? is there a difference?? i think there is..

thanks for your post on putins remarks @ 166 .. to answer your question - at the bottom - no western country is advocating for this openly as putin does here..

Posted by: james | Jan 28 2021 4:29 utc | 176

@ james | Jan 28 2021 4:29 utc | 174 with the question about who holds US debt

I agree that the quote in my comment says the "Federal Reserve" or "Fed" owning the Treasuries which is "real-time" debt versus the $27+ trillion (just checked) that the the US Treasury owes in national debt. The debt that the US Treasury owes is on the shoulders of US public.

So yes, there are kinda 2 types of US debt and one wonders if the Fed would take the loss if they have to buy up all US Treasury debt owned by other than US public. Some would say that US Treasuries are not debt but since 1971, when they became fiat money with no PM backing, that is what they represent, a promise to pay.......something.

Posted by: psychohistorian | Jan 28 2021 4:50 utc | 177

Posted by: arby | Jan 28 2021 0:07 utc | 160

Yes, I remember the Hunt brothers and their little silver escapade.

Changing the rules is what they do, it's how they rig the game, it's Calvinball all the way. That's how the legislatures are controlled, the rules committee, you want to be a corporate stooge and make the big bucks, you get first off on the rules committee. That is how the markets are run too. The "market makers" make the rules, and they make them to serve themselves.

You want to make democracy really work, there is your answer, only the public in open vote can make or change the rules.

Posted by: Bemildred | Jan 28 2021 4:50 utc | 178

Posted by: uncle tungsten | Jan 27 2021 23:17 utc | 158

Well the cat is out of the bag now, it might be hard to fix. I don't know enough to say. I would hazard a guess that Psycho is right it will be war from here on out, now the peons know the score. It could make watching the business news a lot more fun.

Posted by: Bemildred | Jan 28 2021 5:01 utc | 179

Surprise, surprise.

Guardian is reporting Enrique Tarrio, one of the leaders of the Proud Boys, has ties to the FBI.

So this "rising tide of white supremacy" seems more and more like a cooked-up scheme to garner attention and make it seem like any nationalist-deplorable would be out in lockstep with that lowbrow, rudderless lot, who were often there anytime antifa was stinking up the place.

Two cooked-up groups. All theater.

Posted by: NemesisCalling | Jan 28 2021 5:15 utc | 180

@ james | Jan 28 2021 4:29 utc | 174 with follow on

I was a bit simplistic with my answer but it is hard to describe a woman that is only partially pregnant...../snark

The US Treasury has on its books debt other than US Treasuries and the Fed has never been audited....that is the simple answer..../snark

Posted by: psychohistorian | Jan 28 2021 6:49 utc | 181

Another apparently healthy (OC, Ca.) healthcare worker dies of an apparent immune reaction just a few hours after receiving his 2nd[!?] Pfizer CV mRNA jab.

Posted by: gm | Jan 28 2021 9:23 utc | 182

Grieved #165

I found this gem in you excellent link to Indian farmer's strike.

This recent attack on Indian farmers and agricultural workers is part of a longer series of assaults. On 10 January, P. Sainath, the founder of the People’s Archive for Rural India and a senior fellow at Tricontinental: Institute for Social Research, addressed a meeting in Chandigarh at which he talked about the broader context. ‘It is not only about the laws, which they have to take back’, Sainath said. ‘This struggle is not only about Punjab and Haryana; it has gone beyond this. What do we want, community or corporate-led agriculture? The farmers are directly confronting the corporate model. India now is a corporate-led state, with socio-religious fundamentalism and market fundamentalism ruling our lives. This protest is in defense of democracy; we are reclaiming the republic’.

The protests come at a time when there is great international concern about the situation of hunger and food production from multilateral agencies. Ismahane Elouafi, the chief scientist at the UN Food and Agriculture Organisation (FAO), recently told Reuters that farmers and poor urban residents have taken the burden of this pandemic. ‘Cut off from markets and with a plunge in customer demand, farmers struggled to sell their produce while informal workers in urban areas, living hand to mouth, found themselves jobless as lockdowns were imposed’, she said. Elouafi could very well have been talking about India, where the farmers and the urban poor are equally struggling to make ends meet in just this manner.

Class stratified societies such as India and the USA and Saudi Arabia and Indonesia.... are the living embodiment of a crime against humanity. There is no excuse for the human excrement that comprise the leaders in those nations.

Posted by: uncle tungsten | Jan 28 2021 9:26 utc | 183

Grieved #165

Your link led me to The Tricontinental and the Indian Farmers Strike.
This link will take you to Indonesia and the memories.
Thank you.

Posted by: uncle tungsten | Jan 28 2021 9:48 utc | 184

How long before Biden's Caregivers start dusting off the

Radicalization and Homegrown Terrorism Prevention Act of 2007

and start blackmailing/bribing the corrupt geriatric congress-creature leadership to fast track it into law during the dead of night? [following same choreography as 2001 Patriot act law]

FBI has already laid the key significant groundwork back in 2019:

Exclusive: FBI document warns conspiracy theories are a new domestic terrorism threat

Yahoo News

Posted by: gm | Jan 28 2021 10:47 utc | 185

Some amateur investors from a Reddit group picked up some hedge funds. Good for them. But they didn't bring Wall Street down in some sort of popular revolt.

This is what really happened:

A butterfly flaps its wings in Beijing and the stock market crashes

What happened was a literal illustration of chaos theory, namely the proverbial butterfly that flapped its wings in Beijing and caused a hurricane in the Caribbean. The Beijing butterfly in this case was the People’s Bank of China (PBOC), which pushed up the benchmark 7-day repo rate to 3.1% from 2.5% on January 25, a significant tightening that was mirrored in banks’ cost of funding.

Hong Kong stocks and European stock futures dropped immediately, followed by S&P futures (the subsequent drop in the S&P during the Wednesday New York trading session isn’t shown on the chart).

The Gamestop episode probably was an act of desperation, where American investors had literally nowhere to go, and then resorted to go after their own throats for some leftovers:

It’s noteworthy that it occurred on a day when the US Federal Reserve took pains to declare that it would support the market with security purchases for the indefinite future, and on which no important data was released.

Greed overwhelmed fear, moreover, in parts of the market; market professionals watched drop-jawed as day traders more than doubled the price of a moth-eaten video game retailer, Gamestop, during the Thursday session. A $3.5-billion hedge fund, Maplelane Capital, lost a third of its value shorting Gamestop in January.

It was therefore China - not Reddit amateur investors - who brought down Wall Street (and other stock markets around the world). Butterfly effect.


This one for a good laugh:

Vietnam proves communist-led capitalism can work

"communist-led capitalism"... do you mean socialism?

I don't get from where this "Vietnam is hyper-capitalist" myth came from. My guess is that it was a little story the Americans created and begun to spread among themselves so they could sleep better at night after the defeat in the War.

Posted by: vk | Jan 28 2021 11:38 utc | 186

One year later, Belgium finally does what the WHO recommands...

Posted by: Mina | Jan 28 2021 12:06 utc | 187

Spot the capitalist double agent:

China’s GDP growth targets should be scrapped to help put cap on local government debt, top central bank adviser says

China should permanently stop setting annual economic growth targets, as its overall level of borrowing and debt is rising at the fastest rate since 2009, following the global financial crisis, according to a senior adviser to the country’s central bank.

Ma Jun, a member of the monetary policy committee of the People’s Bank of China (PBOC) and its former chief economist, has outlined a number of risks facing the Chinese economy. He warned that continuing to set gross domestic product (GDP) targets may worsen the debt risks among local governments, which could increase their already high borrowing levels as they try to meet unrealistic growth goals.

Instead, Beijing should focus on stabilising employment and controlling inflation as its main macroeconomic policy goals, Ma said, according to a transcript of his remarks published on Monday on media site It was unclear when exactly his comments were made.

Further down the article Ma's argument is developed:

“By emphasising GDP assessments, it is inevitable that some locals will falsely report the rate of economic growth,” he said, adding that many local officials often turn to borrowing to lift GDP growth, adding more debt even as their revenues continue to decline.

Ok, this may be a problem with the system. In the past, some provinces manipulated their numbers in order to meet their annual quotas. But those were accountancy tweaks - not outright falsification - and most of them only to gain 0.1% or so. It's not like the entire Northeast is faking their growth so that +1% becomes +10%.

Besides, there's no evidence that, in the long term, China's GDP data is false. Greatest evidence for this is the West beginning to take China seriously, with the IMF ratifying its official numbers.

So, yes, data falsification is a problem in the socialist system - but it is not a structural problem, mainly because, in the long term, every agent depend on their reliability to survive as a society. In fact, we can argue data falsification is a bigger problem in the capitalist system.

Even if it was a structural problem in socialism, what does it have to do with controlling inflation and "stabilizing employment" [i.e. keep unemployment rates high]? Both are at very healthy levels in China. Besides, if data falsification is a problem, why should we trust China's employment and inflation numbers? Does he have the real numbers? If he doesn't, what is his educated estimation?

Going from problem with reliable data to controlling inflation and keeping unemployment rates high is a quantum leap in Ma's logic. Quantum leaps only happen in the subatomic world, not in the social world.

The only answer I can think of is he's a neoliberal (i.e. capitalist) by ideology. And these last paragraphs corroborate with that:

Ma suggested that Beijing consider relaxing some controls on capital outflows to alleviate the upwards pressure on the yuan exchange rate, to prevent it from becoming too strong, which would hurt China’s exports. Last year, the yuan gained more than 6 per cent against the US dollar.

Ma also expressed some optimism over the new presidential administration in the United States, listing it as the main potential upside opportunity for the Chinese economy this year, as President Joe Biden is likely to seek ways to work with China on the issues of climate change, public health and nuclear arms control.

Except that the Renminbi is not strong against the USD. It is still at the 6 to 1 ratio. In the 2000s, the RMB was well into the 4 to 1 ratio and I don't think anybody was complaining. On the contrary: the USG itself considers the present-day ratio "currency manipulation" by China, and claims it should let the RMB freely fluctuate so it could value it in relation to the USD.

And it astonishes me Ma considers Biden's election as the best thing for China's economy in 2021. What the fuck does Biden have to do with the Chinese people's efforts to rejuvenate their nation? This is Third World inferiority complex at its worst.

Posted by: vk | Jan 28 2021 12:25 utc | 188

And with some luck I can wrap the whole discussion between my two mitten posts :) Did anyone notice should be perfectly possible to edit Bernies mittens onto the Poor Poet?
But enough of that. Something should be done about the long term discrimination against oven gloves. They can handle the cold too.

Posted by: Tuyzentfloot | Jan 28 2021 12:36 utc | 189

Proof is in the pudding:

Xinjiang GDP growing 3.4% in 2020, boosted by agriculture and manufacturing

+3.4% is almost double the rate of the national average (+2.3%).

Bu.. but those poor Uighurs, being exploited, colonized, etc. etc....

Posted by: vk | Jan 28 2021 13:01 utc | 190

Bemildered: further to our conversation at
and my comment -
"I think the reality is that the "broader resistance" have communicated / are communicating to those in decision making places that any military escalations will be met decisively and proportionately. The world could change very quickly. If some in the Bidet administration, US "infrastructure" etc can ensure that nothing stupid happens then enough time can go by for Bidet and Xi to be singing from the same songbook with Putin then joining them. That is my hope. The examples you cite are a tiny fraction of what the "broader resistance" is capable of."

The comment above, Posted by: Passer by | Jan 28 2021 2:41 utc | 171 outlines some of the capabilities I was alluding to. And then let us imagine what China might be capable of.

Plus "Months not years" is now being said by the Hezballah, Iran etc "resistance" with regard to that "shitty little country Israel". Big changes are afoot.

How little China and the Chinese could give a shit about the holohoax and other legendary historic persecutions of the Chosenites must be a big worry for jew and zionist power.

Some months ago, I watched an interesting talk about a possible global reset coming. Unfortunately I didn't copy the youtube address and I can't remember the name of the speaker. He was a Palestinian born in Haifa, about 80 years old, a minister of the Jordanian government, a founder of one of the biggest accounting auditing companies in the world. He outlined the serious work that has been going on for years (by serious people in serious institutions) to bring about such reset. A possible scenario he outlined was - the hubristic US has a low level military confrontation with China and gets demonstrably caned and as part of a facesaving retreat, "partners" with China in a reordering of the current world (dis)order. Maybe a MOAite can provide a name and a link.

Posted by: tucenz | Jan 28 2021 14:25 utc | 191

Posted by: tucenz | Jan 28 2021 14:25 utc | 189

A possible scenario he outlined was - the hubristic US has a low level military confrontation with China and gets demonstrably caned and as part of a facesaving retreat, "partners" with China in a reordering of the current world (dis)order. Maybe a MOAite can provide a name and a link.

I'm not a believer in this particular conspiracy theory but I must admit that James Corbett of the Corbett report often makes a very engaging (though not quite convincing) narrative supporting it.

You may find this interesting:

China and the New World order:

Posted by: Arch Bungle | Jan 28 2021 14:33 utc | 192

Looks like they have figured out a way to stop the bull raid on some of those stocks.

Robinhood locks out traders from GameStop, AMC, Nokia and others

Posted by: arby | Jan 28 2021 14:43 utc | 193

Posted by: tucenz | Jan 28 2021 14:25 utc | 189

Yes, I've seen the "months not years" and even "days" once, but I suppose conditions were not right. I imagine "Biden" is preferred to Trump for this anyway.

And RE passer by's comments, yes that is pretty much what I expect. Details to be determined. Iran running the show, Russia present as a second for Iran, some little guy like Yemen or Hezbollah delivering the blow. "Biden" may not try anything, like I say they look misinformed, but you can't tell out here in TV land, I don't really know how realistic they are. The lunacy in DC results in a society in which nobody can think at all and everybody lies constantly to maintain social position.

And I pretty much stick by the claim that what happens depends on whether anybody is listening (aside from us denizens of the cave here) and whether any of them get a say in what happens. There is nobody in charge really, that's the problem. People give orders, nobody notices.

Russia and China can be patient, I hope they are.

Posted by: Bemildred | Jan 28 2021 14:44 utc | 194

You have to admire the mental gymnastics in the headline:

Economy Cooled in the Fall, but 2020 Rebound Exceeded Early Forecasts: The U.S. economic recovery stumbled but didn’t collapse at the end of last year, setting the stage for a much stronger rebound this year.

"Early forecasts"? What about the "latest forecasts" (which all predicted a full-fledged recovery)? They don't exist anymore?

Posted by: vk | Jan 28 2021 14:45 utc | 195

Posted by: vk | Jan 28 2021 13:01 utc | 188

+3.4% is almost double the rate of the national average (+2.3%).
Bu.. but those poor Uighurs, being exploited, colonized, etc. etc....

Surely you must know these impressive results are due to the phenomenal productive capacity of detention camps?!!

Posted by: Arch Bungle | Jan 28 2021 15:26 utc | 196

Posted by: vk | Jan 28 2021 14:45 utc | 193

Seems quite honest to me if you read it the right way:

- Economy Cooled in the Fall: Economy was in the shitter heading into winter and getting worse.
- but 2020 Rebound Exceeded Early Forecasts: It was shit, but not as shit as we thought it would be.
- The U.S. economic recovery stumbled but didn’t collapse at the end of last year: It bounced off a Stimulus Canvas while collapsing.
- setting the stage for a much stronger rebound this year.: because there's no way this shit could get any worse!

NewSpeak man, NewSpeak.

Posted by: Arch Bungle | Jan 28 2021 15:31 utc | 197

@ Posted by: Arch Bungle | Jan 28 2021 15:26 utc | 194

Even if that was true, it doesn't change the fact that the province itself grew 3.4%. That would not be the case in the colonial model, which predicts lower growth in the colonies (but higher profit rates) than in the metropolis, because wealth is forced from the colonies to the metropolis through the system of imperial preference (artificial surplus of the metropolis).

Posted by: vk | Jan 28 2021 15:41 utc | 198

@ Posted by: Arch Bungle | Jan 28 2021 15:31 utc | 195

Yeah, but why did the NYT ignored the recent forecasts - which all predicted a fantastic rebound for not only the USA, but the whole West?

My hypothesis is the NYT is hiding the failure of the vaccination programs in the West - which the most recent forecasts predicted would instantly trigger an economic recovery.

Posted by: vk | Jan 28 2021 15:43 utc | 199

@ psychohistorian 175 /179.... thanks... i see the federal reserve as a key player in world finance and i think the fact they are not accountable says it all...

Posted by: james | Jan 28 2021 17:34 utc | 200

« previous page | next page »

The comments to this entry are closed.