Moon of Alabama Brecht quote
March 24, 2021

Open Thread 2021-024

News & views ...

Posted by b on March 24, 2021 at 16:39 UTC | Permalink

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Posted by: uncle tungsten | Mar 25 2021 11:47 utc | 99

No Kool aid at all, they have their own small turf and know how to keep their traditions and independence, if not formally independent in fact they really are, controlling their institutions, economy, education, health care and tax collection with the best levels of social development in all of Spain. If you ever have the chance to visit go to Getaria home of Juan Sebastian Elkano who was the first to do a circumnavigation even though it is credited to Magallanes, but Magallanes perished in the Philippines and Elkano completed the voyage, go to Getaria and have some Pintxos and their local wine Txakoli, few places I've visited where gastronomy and good eats have reached that level of artistry.

Posted by: Paco | Mar 25 2021 12:01 utc | 101

Best of all, two french ministers are/were in hospital this week with covid but the governemnt does not want to legalize auto-tests (the same autotests that can be bought in supermarkets in Germany and are received for free by Austrians). It seems they opted for a collective suicide as a punishment for heir hubris.
They first announced 2 weeks ago that it would be available ASAP but are now reluctant of letting them sold in supermarkets because they would lose some votes from the pharmacy-owners.

Posted by: Mina | Mar 25 2021 12:01 utc | 102

They should better call it a EU/US summit,
firs, briefed by Blinken, and then, ending with a visioconference with Biden... So that the US make very clear to all of them who is the boss.

Posted by: Mina | Mar 25 2021 12:05 utc | 103

31 Reasons Why I Won’t Take the Vaccine
by Chananya Weissman


A good read, title self explanatory.

Posted by: Fíréan | Mar 25 2021 12:25 utc | 104

@ Posted by: William Gruff | Mar 24 2021 17:47 utc | 6

Re.: "freedom from need" -
Perfect Animal Farm citation.

@Posted by: maahaa | Mar 24 2021 17:46 utc | 5
Re.: Musk said before concluding, “We’re most likely in a simulation.”
There has long been a term for people unable to distinguish.
The argument is facile, there are smart, bearded people who think about this stuff, but as a beginning I think it is common understanding that there may be a reality, all we have is perception of reality. But when reality is blurred, shoot for the one in the middle (is my advice).

Posted by: jared | Mar 25 2021 12:35 utc | 105

@ Posted by: Mina | Mar 25 2021 9:47 utc | 92

Smells of desperation.
Or is that rotting corpse?

Posted by: jared | Mar 25 2021 12:41 utc | 106

Idiocrates | Mar 25 2021 8:45 utc | 88

was curious about your nick, just spent a bit of time browsing a site called uncyclopedia. good stuff. totally unexpected. thanks for that.

Posted by: dan of steele | Mar 25 2021 12:45 utc | 107

another request I will ask of respected barflies: can you give a brief description of "The Economist"? I admit i'm too lazy to do the research outside the unusable search tools and figured many of you could make a quick summary. A couple of friends depend on it and I am trying to figure out a way to question that dependence but I know it's a pretty strong bond.

thanks in advance.

Posted by: migueljose | Mar 25 2021 12:45 utc | 108

Arguments against the idea we are a simulation.

1. The Universe is not simulatable.
(I don't agree with this but it could be true).

2. Why are we in a simulation? It would be silly to simulate a whole planet etc at huge cost. It
would take a whole planet of computers to simulate us. You could argue that the real Universe has
different physics but then we are really saying, "We don't know".

3. Who cares? If the universe can be simulated exactly then we can never disprove it. If you think and feel,
why does it matter? The more interesting point is if we can simulate the Universe we can recreate it ourselves. Holodecks
here we come. Though this means deepfakes can be as good as the real thing too.

4. The argument that we must be in a simulation because there are more simulated worlds than Universes is just a pure guess. To
perfectly simulate a helium atom in this Universe you need a helium atom. Now a simulation could optimise by only simulating the things it needs to calculate but why then is it calculating your consciousness all the time?

Posted by: Mighty Druken | Mar 25 2021 12:49 utc | 109

Answer to: Fíréan | Mar 25 2021 12:25 utc | 104

Second sentence of your "good read":

" it merely reduces the chance of getting a severe case of a virus if one catches it"

Alright, if you don't even understand the difference between a virus (SARS-CoV-2) and a disease (Covid-19), then maybe one should keep the mouth shut and the fingers still.

“Severe case of virus…” lol

And, by the way, all vaccinations applied to date protect you from a severe course of disease by 100 %.

So, I stopped reading already after reason No. 1, thanks for the recommendation.

Posted by: Cemi | Mar 25 2021 12:50 utc | 110

a human being must be free from material privation, here and now, in life (and not in the mythical afterlife of reincarnation) in order to be really free...Don't fall for the nihilist bullshittery from the Buddhists et al.

Posted by: vk | Mar 24 2021 17:07 utc | 3

Dear oh dear, you are so completely wrong, but how to prove an intellectual and spiritual journey to a materialist incapable of even perceiving the path. Maybe in your next life...

Posted by: Gravel Rash | Mar 25 2021 12:54 utc | 111

@ Posted by: john | Mar 25 2021 11:52 utc | 100

You got it in one! :-)

I think we will soon learn (as in empirically) how it was when The Inquisition was running wild in search of witches and blasphemers. The scope of this silly 'religion' is now so much greater and so is the potential for evil:

Have you had your COVID shot yet?
Lets see your passport sir?
Oh, you are not vaccinated? Please step this way...

Posted by: Idiocrates | Mar 25 2021 13:01 utc | 112

@ dan of steele | Mar 25 2021 12:45 utc | 107

Hahaha :-) I was not aware of that Idiocrates (from the uncyclopedia). Thank you for this! Nice one...

FYI: the nick came to me as an association with the film Idiocracy.

We are headed there, no doubt in my mind...some are perhaps already there :-)

Posted by: Idiocrates | Mar 25 2021 13:10 utc | 113

Posted by: Cemi | Mar 25 2021 12:50 utc | 110

The content was not written by me, if you have any problems with the content that's between you and the Rabbi who authored the content.
Whether one agrees with the content or not it's a good read, though i understand from your response that you chose to read no further than the first of thirty one points, as is your right. Thank you for your response to the post.

Posted by: Fíréan | Mar 25 2021 13:11 utc | 114

@migueljose | Mar 25 2021 12:45 utc | 108

The Economist is often summarily described as "Rothschild's rag", search for that. I'm surprized that you hadn't found it by yourself, as it is common knowledge and squarely inside the Overton window. But anyway, now you know where to start looking for further answers.

Posted by: Lurk | Mar 25 2021 13:13 utc | 115

Blinken told the NATO summit that Russia is spreading "disinformation" to erode trust in vaccines.

Posted by: lysias | Mar 25 2021 13:14 utc | 116

I just felt like it was time for me to make a comment. But I just remembered that words don't really mean anything anymore.

Posted by: blues | Mar 25 2021 13:14 utc | 117

We are not facing socialism or communism, we are facing totalitarianism, if it is not already here.
Under totalitarianism, all zones of autonomy are treated as criminality and all forms of independent thought are treated as a threat to society.
Those who are unaware of this, and are still caught in the dichotomy trap, thinking they are fighting supermacists and white nazis, are brainwashed soldiers and agents of the totalitarian system which they can neither understand or call by name, as the inner party masks it's nature from the public. The public officials we know and their agents in the military and police state, comprise the outer party, and are complicit to varying degrees whether by coercion or maybe simple fear of being on the receiving end of system now that they know the true evil of its inner workings.
Those pushing this agenda are not clowns, they know exactly what they are doing and they are executing a plan they have been working on for very long time.
If we have learned anything in the last year, it is not chaotic although the appearance of chaos serves them well. Each step from the implementation of department of homeland security and fusion center nationalized apparatuses, to the corporate requirement of face masking, to the implementation of a lawless business operated voting system ominously called "dominion", has been imposed upon us in a way that can only be described as precisely coordinated, only distracted momentarily by citizen revolts, which have all been methodically handled in backchannels and even more ominously quiet visits from agents of the thought police, which are uniformly ignored by the media agents of the totalitarian system.
Dissidents have left the country, Glenn Greenwald, Barrett Brown, and they struggled to establish any media platform that will not be censored or otherwise comprimised. Others like Craig Murray face the now surprisingly draconian censorship measures, while others slowly wake up to realize that the entire online mass media marketplace belongs to a foreign country who only needs our soldiers to die on land mines in syria for a century long aggressive war for an ethnostate you are not allowed to mention without being criminalized.
First agenda of the new sleepy green screen administration, endless foreign war without benefit to the home population and removal of personal arms.
The nexus of these impositions, the WEF, council on "foreign relations", and other councils of the unaccountable epstein class, is obfuscated from us, we cannot call Bill Gates or George Soros to account, directly question them, know their wearabouts, or mock them without risk of reprisal from privatized goons.
The military was required to retake their oath, but the organization known as the Oath Keepers is considered an extremist organization and a cartoon frog was banned with prejudice like a historic committer of atrocity.
This is an upside down world, and it will not right itself without action.
This is Tyranny writ large.
Make your plans to be enslaved, or.....
When, not if, they imprison me, remember that I wrote these words, and please rescue me from the coming gulag which at this point I foresee is unavoidable. Those of us who stand in the public light have no choice but to demonstrate the evil with our lives.
Remember, if a writer takes risk to post his words, they have 10x as much merit as those words written for profit or to slide important topics, of which there are both on this page.
How sad it is to see the United States fall this way, but how easy to foresee it was. What Eisenhower and Kennedy warned about became the cancer that killed the entire idea.
What cicero did too, no nation can survive treachery from within.
If you intend not to be a slave this and my link will be useful to you.
Library Genesis:
Mental Self Defense
god bless america
but at the moment, god would have nothing to do with this government.

Posted by: J. Michael Hudson | Mar 25 2021 13:29 utc | 118

@ Posted by: J. Michael Hudson | Mar 25 2021 13:29 utc | 118

Excellent, Thanks for making that valuable point.
In some ways, words are our enemy - things are labeled in ways that have conotations that place would areas of discussion in simplistic buckets that we can support or attack. Funny, we are having same discussion at Z/H at this moment - reduce the discussion to a binary (ideally) then stir-up an argument.

This issue is not the economic theorys (which only model reality), the issue is to create a society which engages all in a positive way so that that society can flourish and acheive great things.

Posted by: jared | Mar 25 2021 13:39 utc | 119

According to NASA's Earth Observatory, Annapurna I — the 10th-highest mountain — is the most dangerous to climb, with a fatality rate of 32% as of 2012. K2, second-highest peak, is almost as dangerous, with a fatality rate of 29%. Everest, by contrast, has a 4% fatality rate.
Is Covid-19 infection as dangerous? In early months of the epidemic, infected people sent to facilities caring got the disabled aged could be as well sent to climb Annapurna (of course, logistics made it impossible). Now it seems to be between 1 and 3%, which seems higher than the public is comfortable with.

Posted by: Piotr Berman | Mar 25 2021 13:56 utc | 120

Posted by: Mina | Mar 25 2021 12:01 utc | 102

You can have a test for free in the pharmacy; I don't have any problem there.

Posted by: Laguerre | Mar 25 2021 13:58 utc | 121

got the disabled aged --> for the disabled aged people

Posted by: Piotr Berman | Mar 25 2021 13:58 utc | 122

Seems more and more that Trump was a circus distraction (willingly) for the masses, while the grown ups were obviously working very diligently behind closed doors on this new normal. I think TPTB were expecting more people to be turned off as Trump kept increasing the unsavory behavior and rhetoric, but many just cheered louder. Oh well, as unsavory as it is to the immaculately groomed...sticks instead of carrots it will have to be.

Posted by: DaveNItUp | Mar 25 2021 14:00 utc | 123

J. Michael Hudson @Mar25 13:29 #118

Excellent comment.

Pages could be written about the slow but deliberate decent into tyranny. To some degree this has been helped by technological advances. But those that see the extraordinary media manipulation know that tech was not the only factor and probably not even the major factor.

PS I met Michael Hudson at a event.


Posted by: Jackrabbit | Mar 25 2021 14:01 utc | 124

"Aug 26, 2020 — However, the death rate for climbers [of Mt Everest] has hovered unchanged at around 1% since 1990. "

I take my words back. Covid-19 is more dangerous. Of course, climbers have a better health profile than average. I am trying to emulate them with gentle hikes.

Posted by: Piotr Berman | Mar 25 2021 14:02 utc | 125

Posted by: migueljose | Mar 25 2021 12:45 utc | 108 who ask for a description of The Economist

I'll just quote Wladimir Iljitsch Lenin:

"[The Economist] is a journal which speaks for British millionaires."

Posted by: vato | Mar 25 2021 14:03 utc | 126

So that the US make very clear to all of them who is the boss.

Posted by: Mina | Mar 25 2021 12:05 utc | 103

US would like to think that, but they're having difficulty keeping up the facade.

Posted by: Laguerre | Mar 25 2021 14:06 utc | 127

No Laguerre, that was the announcement, but they U-turned (lots of U-turn last week, isn't it? what a coincidence)

Posted by: Mina | Mar 25 2021 14:16 utc | 128

bevin and norweigan

thank you

Posted by: migueljose | Mar 25 2021 14:23 utc | 129

@ J. Michael Hudson | Mar 25 2021 13:29 utc | 118

Thank you for that. Your post got me thinking along the lines of:

Have we actually ever known anything other than tyranny? I think it could easily be argued that the answer is NEVER. Obviously, it depends on the definition, but perhaps the 'acceleration' we see now is either an illusion of change or it is something other than slippage into full blown tyranny...maybe its a fight between tyrannies?

Perhaps one tyranny has decided its now or bust (i.e. US etc). Maybe its the other way around: if one tyranny is not capable of lording over them all, then this fight of tyrannies will lead us out of the deep dark hole and we can be feree...

oooh shit, I think I must have eaten too much of that cheese I found under the cooker!

Posted by: Idiocrates | Mar 25 2021 14:23 utc | 130

@ Posted by: J. Michael Hudson | Mar 25 2021 13:29 utc | 118

There is overwhelming evidence the concept of "Totalitarianism" is a pseudo-scientific propaganda device developed by the Western center-left in the aftermath of WWII to fight the Soviets in the ideological war.

The origin of the term itself is obscure, though. The Mensheviks who immigrated to the USA in the 1920s after losing the Civil War claim to have popularized it. Either way, the term caught up so well during the Cold War in the West that, by the late 1950s at least, there already was an academic field called "Studies of Totalitarianism" in France, even though it was probably invented in the USA.

Posted by: vk | Mar 25 2021 14:26 utc | 131

@john | Mar 25 2021 11:52 utc | 100

Thank you for posting that, much appreciated! It gives me hope that the insanity will end eventually.

Posted by: Norwegian | Mar 25 2021 14:31 utc | 132

"We" (my wife is actually carrying the ball on this) are having a wicked hard time
getting the vaccine of our choice. (We choose the J&J vaccine.)

Biden, you are full of promises ("politic promises"), but this vaccine distribution is fu'ed, in our humble opinion.
[side note: When Bernie Sanders supporters, who had contributed to the DNC, sued the DNC because the DNC broke it's
own charter which stated it would treat candidates equally, the DNC argued in court that that was a "political promise"
and that they, the DNC, could do basically whatever it (and the most $influential$) wanted]

If you go to the CDC website to try to locate a vaccine they send you to

Maybe, if you live in a specific state, it might be easier.
But here is the current pop-up you receive at

States reporting data to VaccineFinder

This website includes the latest information on COVID-19 vaccine availability at certain providers and pharmacies in
Alaska, Tennessee, Indiana, Iowa, Oklahoma, Utah, and New York State (excluding NYC).

In other states, information may be limited while more providers and pharmacies are added in the coming weeks.

It is the CDC which recommends and links you to VaccineFinder.

So, VaccineFinder, in our state, tells us something is available at a very specific pharmacy.
You check with that pharmacy and they say, "sorry".

When you do find a vaccine available they can't (or do not want to) tell you what particular vaccine they have in stock.
You have to show up to find out (maybe find out, I haven't experienced it, but I am not expecting much from them).
Then if they don't have your choice of vaccine and you refuse what they offer you go back to the end of the waiting list.

Can the CDC answer a straightforward question?

In their FAQ section for coronavirus vaccines (they have 10 of them):

Can I choose which COVID-19 vaccine I get?

Here is the answer, which basically says "we don't want to tell you":

You should get any COVID-19 vaccine that is available when you are eligible.
Do not wait for a specific brand. A