Moon of Alabama Brecht quote
August 29, 2021

The MoA Week In Review - OT 2021-066

Last week's posts at Moon of Alabama:

Other issues:


Covid-19 - Fluvoxamine:

China Tech cleanup:


Use as open thread ...

Posted by b on August 29, 2021 at 20:00 UTC | Permalink

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Posted by: arby | Aug 29 2021 20:15 utc | 3

Thanks for the link Arby. very good interview

Posted by: migueljose | Aug 30 2021 17:49 utc | 101

@oldhippie | Aug 30 2021 16:49 utc | 95

Thank you.
You are a Norwegian living n Norway?


I look up the numbers for Norway and google tells me 156,000 cases and only 814 dead. Only half a percent die in Norway? How has that been achieved. And how is the death toll so low? Here in Cook County with a slightly smaller population (5.15 million versus your 5.4) we have 11,000 dead. From front page news we are part of same civilization. Any insight?
I require extraordinary evidence for extraordinary claims. I have seen none of it, I know of nobody who have died, and I know of nobody who have told me they know. I know one person who claims to have been sick (and closed down the company I work for for more than a year!), he is till there and we have lunch and work together now. The whole thing is like a separate parallel universe that doesn't exist in my physical reality.

I think you are looking at a typical Norwegian trait, presenting ourselves as better than than others, we can fake it better I guess.

Posted by: Norwegian | Aug 30 2021 18:04 utc | 102

"Russia to create reusable space freighter to replace Progress resupply ships":

"The new space freighter will replace operational Progress resupply ships currently used to deliver cargo to the International Space Station, conduct refueling operations and adjust the orbit, the Energia chief designer said.

"'The Progress has one serious drawback: we cannot return the payload from the orbit aboard it. The disadvantage is that it burns up [upon re-entry to the Earth’s atmosphere],' he explained."

I imagine it's also designed to work with China's space station. Some may have missed China's announcement of its intention to study the construction dynamics for a very large space station. The ISS is slowly breaking apart as new cracks are discovered in its oldest module.

China's rocket designer announced likely manned moon landing in 2030. IMO, by that time the Outlaw US Empire will no longer have the ability to reach the ISS if it remains a viable orbital platform, which at this point is highly questionable. To avoid that, some very important budgetary actions must be taken prior to the 2024 elections.

Posted by: karlof1 | Aug 30 2021 18:08 utc | 103

thanks for the feedback on charlie watts.. i was busy yesterday going a gig and we opened with 'paint it black' in honour of charlie....

@ gottlieb | Aug 29 2021 22:08 utc | 20... thanks man! ditto and back at you!

Posted by: james | Aug 30 2021 18:26 utc | 104

@ uncle tungsten | Aug 30 2021 2:26 utc | 30.. thanks.. i am glad you enjoyed it!

did you read the link from @ Mohandas Templeton | Aug 30 2021 4:38 utc | 46??

you might want to check that out as well.. here is a link to it again... worth considering all sides... thanks for the link mohandas..

Pepe Escobar is Full of S**t

Posted by: james | Aug 30 2021 18:33 utc | 105

@c1ue 100

...because COVID is here to stay.

Where is 'here'? The places where covid has never taken a foot hold, those from which it has been eradicated or those which clearly want it to continue to be the gift that keeps on giving?

Posted by: Idiocrates | Aug 30 2021 19:02 utc | 106

Is someone murdering vaccine opponents ?

Posted by: librul | Aug 30 2021 19:50 utc | 107

librul "Is someone murdering vaccine opponents ?"

It is generally called self inflicted injury. Unlike the US, China has a healthy population. In the first early days of the covid appearance in China, little was known about how best to treat patients. Many medical staff died.

Here in oz when it was first allowed to spread, it ripped through a number of oldies homes and cut them down like insecticide dropping flies.
As for dedicated anti vaxers - self inflicted injury.

Posted by: Peter AU1 | Aug 30 2021 20:08 utc | 108

@ librul:

Okay, we now have three small-fry right-wing talk radio hosts dead, official cause of death is COVID. If there's a conspiracy to kill small-fry right-wing talk radio hosts, we'd need causes of death. Did government agents manage to infect them with lethal doses of COVID? was it Novichok, maybe? . . . We'd also need three complicit hospital teams. Not seeing it, sorry.

Posted by: corvo | Aug 30 2021 20:25 utc | 109

clue @ 100

Wyoming population is about 10% of Norway population and has roughly similar covid deaths. Both populations start with a 5, Norway’s pop has seven digits, Wyoming just six. Cook County used to be way ahead of downstate with lower population density, it is same now.

One factor that has to matter is that our population here is massively unhealthy to begin with. One reason none of us know the dead is that 300# persons tend to have small social circles. That can’t explain all of it. The vaccinated are about everyone around here. And I know none who have had major adverse reactions. Plenty who report minor adverse reactions, just zero with the bad stuff.

Health care workers I know have been saying since the beginning the patients are not there. The hospitals are and have been quiet. Same with vaccine reactions. Every doctor/researcher on the anti- side talks about the caseload. I would love to see some confirmation of that.

Posted by: oldhippie | Aug 30 2021 20:27 utc | 110

Peter AU1 @ 21 People are not tired of hearing about adverse and does not work problems discovered in engineered amino acid (genetic) scripts (mRNAs vaccines). Just now discovering not only simple, cheap cures for the Corona-19 which work, even with the dreaded Delta variant, but discovering the mRNA vaccines, are short term in effect, if they work at all. The biggest threat from Covid 19 is Oligarch intention to install digital slavery; the corona virus is relatively a very low threat compared to the giant problems revealed in the following links: read this and this read also this and this read this one too Is MRI a problem for the vaxed?

R. M. Rao @ 31 Covid19 update from India.
Kerala one of the most jabbed states has also highest infection rates in India. mRNA vaccines do not prevent infection, they excite each person's own immune system to rise in defense of the Corona structure, which is the problem with covid 19 disease.. take a look at this pre Wahun U. S. Patent 7279327 it describes specific S1 spike protein viral gene sequence and ACE2 cellular surface Receptor binding.

rjb1.5 "Very few people call for a prohibition on the use of automobiles or “radical reductions” in speed limits..

I was able to study the effect of low speed limit vs high speed limit on a long bridge that got knocked out.. before the damage, the bridge had two lanes going each way (total of 4 lanes) . the speed limit was 35 mph. the death rate was high.. one side of the bridge got repaired long before the other.. on the functioning side, two way traffic, the speed limit was raised to 55 MPH.. and the number of accidents reduced to near zero.. when the bridge was repaired and returned to normal, it posted 35 MPH, and accidents are daily problems.

In dangerous places where the speed limit is lowered the accidents increase.. has been my observation (lots of facts to back it up). I explain it this way, most people get bored and therefore become distracted when the task becomes mundane, routine and easy to perform.. therefore the participant lacks the attention needed to keep the activity safe.. carried to an extreme, theory suggest driving in a hazardous place, demands high levels of driver attention. attention is quite different from caution..speed limits address caution; but they decrease a driver's attention? people moving at different speeds, with different levels of caution and with different levels of driving skills, cause those with high skill levels, and indifference to caution, to pay attention. Put ten cops along the path, and increase the speed limit and watch the accidents go down. Drivers pay attention to cop threat.. and to incompetent drivers.. they get very angry at over cautious drivers, but they remain attentive to the threat <=undue caution and inept driving skill creates.. same in the is inattention to detail that leads to problems, there check list are used. to make sure the attention is focused on possible problems.

Posted by: snake | Aug 30 2021 20:40 utc | 111

@S #99
As usual, you purport to know things but clearly you don't.
It isn't just me pronouncing open source security is shyte, it is one of the titans of the open source area - Paul Vixie.
Nor has Mr. Vixie made a blanket pronouncement - he stated a specific reason why OS software security is shyte.
Nor is your commentary about "long term" relevant - it is precisely the maintenance of long term open source code which is the source of so many security problems.
New OS stuff tends to be not used - but there are all sorts of open source bits being called by other open source bits which are fundamentally insecure and have been so for decades. The CVS logs are filled with examples of these - much less the newer examples where dropped open source bits are taken over and used for supply chain attacks.
But thanks again for underlining just how little you know vs. the hype you believe.

Posted by: c1ue | Aug 30 2021 20:47 utc | 112

@Idiocrates #106
here means the human race.
Unless you're going to become a hermit and avoid all contact with the rest of humanity - there is no question whatsoever that COVID is going to be a recurring disease like the common cold and influenza, forever.
Those populations which were spared due to relative initial isolation combined with travel bans only postponed the problem - as my many examples show.

Posted by: c1ue | Aug 30 2021 20:49 utc | 113


Missed that the first time. Interesting read. Thanks.

Posted by: David F | Aug 30 2021 20:56 utc | 114

@oldhippie #110
If the US is so unhealthy - why is it that the US' COVID death rate is not significantly higher than Europe?
Secondly, the most severe examples of COVID death weren't in the "fat Midwestern people" red states but in the blue cities.
And while the US death rate is somewhat worse than the EU in general, on the other hand we also have a shyte health care system. I would ascribe far more deaths due to that than any other factor, yet the reality is that the US COVID death rate is 21st in the world @1966/1M vs. Spain 1799/1M, France 1747/1M, Italy 2140/1M.
Yes, Germany is lower @ 1101/1M but we're still talking about 2% or under - the majority of which were going to die anyway in 2 years or less.
As for Wyoming vs. Norway: Wyoming is libertarian central while Norway is a socialist petro state - and Wyoming is a destination for a lot of travel due to both the oil business and its upcoming status as a competitor to Delaware in the shell corp business.
Norway? I don't know of anything there that anyone goes to see. It isn't a major tourist center. Its oil production is offshore and administered by the state. It is cold. Food isn't impressive.
It might as well be an island in the Arctic ocean.

Posted by: c1ue | Aug 30 2021 20:57 utc | 115

Blue cities have lots of dark-skinned people, who are disproportionately deficient in Vitamin D.

Posted by: lysias | Aug 30 2021 21:07 utc | 116

The evacuation's not yet done, but post-evacuation essays are already being written and published. The first is Alastair Crooke's The ‘Great Reset’ in Microcosm: “Data Driven Defeat” in Afghanistan is informed by several sources, the first of which is cited thusly:

"“A retired Navy SEAL who served in the White House under both Bush and Obama reflected,[that] 'collectively the system is incapable of taking a step back to question basic assumptions.' That 'system' is best understood, not simply as a military or foreign policy body, but as a euphemism for the habits and institutions of an American ruling class that has exhibited an almost limitless collective capacity for deflecting the costs of failure.

“This class in general, and the people in charge of the war in Afghanistan in particular, believed in informational and management solutions to existential problems. They elevated data points and sta­tistical indices to avoid choosing prudent goals and organizing the proper strategies to achieve them. They believed in their own provi­dential destiny and that of people like them to rule, regardless of their failures”. [Emphasis Original]

Crooke thus writes:

"The flaw was that Afghanistan as a liberal progressive vision was a hoax in the first place: Afghanistan was invaded, and occupied, because of its geography. It was the ideal platform from which to perturb Central Asia, and thus unsettle Russia and China.

"No one was truly committed because there was really no longer any Afghanistan to commit to. Whomsoever could steal from the Americans did so. The Ghani regime collapsed in a matter of days, because it was ‘never there’ to begin with: A Potemkin Village, whose role lay in perpetuating a fiction, or rather the myth of America’s Grand Vision of itself as the shaper and guardian of ‘our’ global future.

"The true gravity for America and Europe of the present psychological ‘moment’ is not only that nation-building, as a project intended to stand up liberal values been revealed as having ‘achieved nothing’, but Afghanistan débacle has underlined the limitations to technical managerialism in way that is impossible to miss." [My Emphasis]

Crooke then paraphrases Robert Kagan:

"that the ‘global values’ project (however tenuous its basis in reality) nonetheless has become essential to preserving ‘democracy’ at home: For, he suggests, an America that retreats from global hegemony, would no longer possess the domestic group solidarity to preserve America as ‘idea’, at home, either.

"What Kagan is saying here is important — It may constitute the true cost of the Afghanistan débacle. Every élite class advances various claims about its own legitimacy, without which a stable political order is impossible. Legitimating myths can take many forms and may change over time, but once they become exhausted, or lose their credibility – when people no longer believe in the narrative, or the claims which underpin that political ‘idea’ – then it is ‘game over’. [My Emphasis]

If that becomes true, Caitlin Johnstone and many others will be jubilant as the Establishment Narrative collapses. But Crooke's not finished. He then cites and links to the second main source, an essay by Swedish intellectual, Malcolm Kyeyune, "Farewell to Bourgeois Kings", whose pen thrust sinks in deeply:

"The American withdrawal has turned into a rout of the most desperate sort, with nobody really seeming to be in charge or claiming responsibility. Who will evacuate the american civilians? Who knows? Maybe the plucky russians could do Uncle Sam a solid – the russian consular staff is still there, they didn’t flee Kabul by piling into a waiting helicopter, after all – and help America’s wayward sons and daughters now that America herself seems to just have given up on the job? Maybe it’s now Xi Jinping’s job to clean up this godawful mess, or perhaps the taliban themselves will have to take responsibility for the safety of American citizens and soldiers, given that the actual superpower in the room seems so incapable of doing it? It is hard to talk about the unfolding situation without becoming excessively sarcastic; stories of military dogs being given seating on planes while afghanis desperately cling to the wings just outside the cabin window, or the local McDonalds in Kabul being temporarily staffed by marines, almost defy words. They might not be true, but they don’t exactly beggar belief; the department of defense making sure McDonalds can keep itself staffed in its final days of operation thanks to USMC jarheads pitching in to flip burgers is no more ridiculous than Emperor Nero playing his fiddle while Rome burns down around him. What makes this moment in history so, well, historic, is the almost inescapable sense, shared across the political and national spectrum, that we are watching something very similar before our very eyes: the American empire is burning, and nobody knows what to do about it, much less how to put the fire out." [My Emphasis]

Kyeyune then cites the famous essay by Carl Schmitt, The Crisis of Parliamentary Democracy, then puts the citation into his own words:

"What Schmitt is saying here is very important, and it might very well end up being the true cost of the Afghanistan debacle. Every ruling class throughout history advances various claims about its own legitimacy, without which a stable political order is impossible. Legitimating claims can take many different forms and may change over time, but once they become exhausted or lose their credibility, that is pretty much it."

Crooke then grandly concludes what many of us have already speculated about:

"There is therefore, little mystery as to why the Taliban took over Kabul so quickly. Not only did the project per se lack legitimacy for Afghans, but that aura of claimed expertise, of technological inevitability that has protected the élite managerial class, has been exposed by the sheer dysfunctionality on display, as the West frantically flees Kabul. And it is precisely how it has ended that has really drawn back the curtain, and shown the world the rot festering beneath." [My Emphasis]

The questions now become: How fast will the rot disintegrate and how much damage will ensue?

Posted by: karlof1 | Aug 30 2021 21:16 utc | 117

Blue cities have lots of dark-skinned people, who are disproportionately deficient in Vitamin D.

Posted by: lysias | Aug 30 2021 21:07 utc | 116

They're also more crowded. Those notoriously overweight denizens of the flyover states may experience a crowd once a week -- at church -- and maybe in the supermarket, whereas the poorer city folk get to experience a crowded bus or subway car at least ten times a week, in addition to shopping, church (assuming they go), etc. American nursing homes may not be quite as crowded as a subway car, but communal meals three times a day, double-occupancy rooms, air that circulates between rooms, etc. all contribute their bit.

I imagine increased population density and use of mass transit also play a role in the higher numbers in several European countries.

As we can see, however, the flyover states have been catching up, yay for them.

Posted by: corvo | Aug 30 2021 21:19 utc | 118

Patroklos | 13
Re: Covid-19 - Fluvoxamine
“My question is this: does it act on the virus or the germophobic hysteria that turned a seasonal respiratory illness into the Black Death? We could all use a little calming down...”
Oh yes indeed, we all could. And I guess it’s the latter rather than the former. In the study they say hopes are for Fluvoxamine to have some moderating or modulating effect on the immune system. It’s pretty much inconceivable that Fluvoxamine can have any effect on the virus itself, I think. Also, it doesn’t interact with the receptors which the virus goes for. Rather, it may help your body tackle the infection more effectively, or with less stress to your system.
Other than that, I subscribe to what DebzAu | 81 says. Certainly not a bad idea to take an anti-depressant/anti-anxiety med (if it works) if you’re in a place as gruesome as an ICU.

Posted by: Scotch Bingeington | Aug 30 2021 21:30 utc | 119

clue @ 115

I am in one of those blue cities. People here are really fat. Just as fat as in corn country downstate. Medical workers I know tell me that is the one consistent feature of covid patients. So I mentioned that. And here in the bluest of cities I still don’t have examples at hand of those who got sick or died of covid or who were sickened by the vaccine. It is like watching a movie. Six hundred thousand deaths should be noticeable. It is not.

Posted by: oldhippie | Aug 30 2021 21:39 utc | 120


We live in a sterile world where even images of injury or death are blurred by the sensors. The old and frail, even though they may still enjoy life are tucked away out of sight and out of mind.

Posted by: Peter AU1 | Aug 30 2021 21:54 utc | 121

Six hundred thousand deaths should be noticeable. It is not.

Posted by: oldhippie | Aug 30 2021 21:39 utc | 120

It would be noticeable if the fatalities were more evenly spread throughout the general population. As it is, 600K fatalities in a population of ca. 330M people is still only about 0.18%.

I imagine one can divide the country fairly neatly into two groups: (1) those who (a) know someone who became seriously ill from COVID or died from it, and (b) take COVID seriously, and (2) those who (a) don't know someone who became seriously ill from COVID or died from it, and (b) don't take COVID seriously. There's some "in between," e.g., people who take COVID seriously but don't know anyone who had it, but I don't suspect there are many such people. That's just the way people are, and it does fit in nicely with America's libertarian and Calvinistic ways of thinking: Why should *I* give a damn about *your* disease? (As if we didn't and don't see that with AIDS, right?)

Posted by: corvo | Aug 30 2021 22:08 utc | 122


Almost everyone in America is fat.

I too find it puzzling that I don't know anyone personally who has died or been hospitalized, even in a second hand way.

It SHOULD be noticeable.

The closest I have come is a guy who worked in the same place as me, though only one day a week for about 4 hours a day. Even then I didn't know the guy.

Posted by: David F | Aug 30 2021 22:17 utc | 123

@ oldhippie 85

Well I don’t know any with major side effects either. And pretty much everyone I know is vaccinated.

First dose of Pfizer I had mild viral symptoms within 48hrs, tired during the day but escalating for 5 nights in a row with all over muscle and joint pains, cranking headaches, swelling lymph nodes, painful urination, night sweats and sudden prickling fevers which topped out at 39.1C before breaking on the last night along with almost all of the other symptoms. According to US CDC this was a 'moderate' systemic reaction, maybe 10% or less of their case study. My gene pool reported similar milder but one severe reaction and when they fronted to Emergency the doctors said 'yes the pain happens' and prescribed hard core painkillers and bed rest which ended up being about 10 days.

Everyone else I know has reported mild or no symptoms apart from the usual sore injection point.

As for the Hermit Kingdom of ruthless dictator Ardern and her ruinous lockdowns – the world is full of mindnumbingly stupid people all parroting Yankee hysteria propagated on the global phone network via US corporate controlled social media – both pro and contra vax – but I assume they'll all shut the fuck up and start blathering about the next craze once Covid becomes an endemic seasonal malaise like the flu (with boosters and still killing people) or the measles (killing mostly anti-vax like the awful 2019 epidemic in Samoa that took so many of their little ones).

Compared to the Tory stupidity in Aus at the federal and NSW state levels, my year's pandemic free sojourn in Aotearoa has been surreal in the sense of being just simply ... 'normal'.

Posted by: Zeug Gezeugt | Aug 30 2021 22:18 utc | 124

Just wanted to say that Biden should be commended for getting USA out of Afghanistan. For whatever complaints there are about him, he did the right thing here

Posted by: aaaa | Aug 30 2021 22:31 utc | 125

Just wanted to say that Biden should be commended for getting USA out of Afghanistan. For whatever complaints there are about him, he did the right thing here

Posted by: aaaa | Aug 30 2021 22:31 utc | 125

Umm, not so fast. It depends mightily on why he did it. If he's just positioning us for more murderous mayhem elsewhere, then sorry, no laurels from me.

Here's one way to measure: Assuming that we really did remove all troops AND special ops AND mercenaries from Afghanistan, how many of them were brought back to the USA? How many of those "contractors" were told their services were no longer needed?

Posted by: corvo | Aug 30 2021 22:39 utc | 126

@c1ue #112:

As usual, you purport to know things but clearly you don't.

You have just described yourself.

It isn't just me pronouncing open source security is shyte, it is one of the titans of the open source area - Paul Vixie.

First of all, Paul Vixie is certainly not a “titan” of open source. More importantly, I don’t care what Paul Vixie or anyone else thinks. I only care about logical arguments.

Nor has Mr. Vixie made a blanket pronouncement - he stated a specific reason why OS software security is shyte.

And I stated a specific reason for why this argument does not apply to GrapheneOS: it does not have “tens to hundreds of billions of lines of code”. To give you a sense of scale, AOSP 8.0.0 has 26 million lines of .cpp/.java code.

Nor is your commentary about "long term" relevant - it is precisely the maintenance of long term open source code which is the source of so many security problems.

Congratulations, you have zero reading comprehension skills. The “long-term” qualifier applied not to the age of the code base, but to the goal of the open-source movement to return control of devices back to users, which requires writing open-source firmware for all processors inside devices, which is hard because these processors don’t have publicly available documentation. It is these efforts to reverse-engineer popular processors and/or find vendors that will agree to make their documentation public, as well as writing the first open-source implementation of the relevant firmware that are hard and, therefore, are long-term goals.

New OS stuff tends to be not used - but there are all sorts of open source bits being called by other open source bits which are fundamentally insecure and have been so for decades.

Guess what, there are people who understand this and have set out to create new open-source operating systems focused on security precisely because of their understanding.

But thanks again for underlining just how little you know vs. the hype you believe.

Thanks for underlining your complete inability to comprehend what others are writing about and your neurotic fixation on “debunking the hype”, even in situations where no one is hyping anything, which causes you to trip up and fall flat on your face—again and again.

Last time you were “debunking the hype”, you claimed that:

It is irrelevant because for every GW of solar or wind capacity that China builds, it builds 10x in coal fired.

I showed to you that it’s actually 0.6×, not 10×.

You also claimed that:

…the CCP is not trying to be carbon neutral.

I showed to you that the share of China’s electricity generated from carbon-neutral sources grew from 26.3% in 2015 to 32.7% in 2019, i.e., that CPC is indeed moving towards carbon neutrality.

I also showed that the share from renewable sources (sans nuclear) grew from 23.3% to 27.9%, to which you replied that:

…the actual percentage of China's overall energy picture from renewables is vanishingly small.

A person who describes 27.9% as a “vanishingly small” percentage is a clown.

Posted by: S | Aug 30 2021 23:08 utc | 127

Norwegian, Juliania and others who watch the Duran
Below is a link to today's excellent critique of Kamala Harris's disastrous trip to Vietnam and her visit to Hanoi's memorial of where they shot down John McCain, a man who flew 22 bombing trips over Hanoi and killed lots of people-- women, children, grandparents, patriotic Vietnamese. Both Alexander Mercouris and Alex Cristoforous did their usual detailed analysis of the Biden team's acceleration of U.S. imperial collapse. As usual, I learned some things and chewed on some concepts. However.....
About 3/4 of the way through they both began talking about their hope that the Republicans would win in 2022 and 2024. This diversion is a very important flaw and strategic mistake as well as, IMO, an inherent failure that most humans--myself included-- fall into: picking a side. Also termed "lesser of two evils". The result of "picking a side" is that a true resistance loses momentum and power. The U.S.A. is an imperial death machine. No group who is currently wired into the power elite is capable or willing to destroy THEIR life support system. 100%. Bernie Sanders. the Squad. even Tulsi Gabbard (full disclosure... I sent money to Sanders and Gabbard). Picking a team-- red, blue ore "progressive" which is fake revolutionary-- will not work. In other words... the 2022 elections should not be a focus of the resistance. Picking a lesser evil will hurt the resistance.
We need the talents, insights and sometimes courageous actions of people like the Duran and others. They teach us, inform us, stretch our understanding of key concepts and help us build a mental framework within which we can process information and sort through tricks and lies to build a movement that we can use to carry forward our vision of a sane world. But... no more "lesser of evils" choices.
Bottom line... we can't forget the heroic people who broke through the "lesser evils" didact: Malcom, Che, Fidel, Hugo Chavez, Evo, maybe Castillo (Peru). many many others. While we're at it, we could help the resistance within The Empire by pushing on our oracles, our teachers, our sources of information to "resist" the temptation to pick a side when the next Hunger Games/elections are hyped.

Posted by: migueljose | Aug 30 2021 23:08 utc | 128

Leaving weapons, vehicles, aircraft, tactical gear for Taliban is not a fuck up.
It was on purpose.

It’s not a giant blunder.

Same as leaving gear, etc. for ISIL in Iraq and Syria.

Who would make that mistake? Multiple times?

There is so much we DONT KNOW, and can only speculate onl

Posted by: Cadence calls | Aug 30 2021 23:24 utc | 129

@ migueljose:

Then there are those who believe that it's something of a moral imperative to vote for the greater of two evils, knowing full well that they are doing so, in the belief that the least horrible option among the possible ones is to thereby hasten the collapse of the system. The sooner it collapses, so the argument goes, the smaller the number of people who will hurt (as the American population does continue to increase). It's hard to imagine that a resistance movement is even possible in the USA, let alone a unified one, let alone one that could win over the hearts and minds of the great majority of Americans, especially the ones with all the firepower, before the collapse of the biosphere.

Not saying I'm a proponent of that argument, and I'm not at all sure it's an ethical one, but I can understand the reasoning behind it.

Posted by: corvo | Aug 30 2021 23:28 utc | 130

[Cross-posted from the ISKP thread.]

Survivors of the Kabul Airport Massacre: “The Americans Shot Directly at Us Without Discerning” (Komsomol’skaya Pravda, Aleksandr Kots, August 30, 2021 — in Russian)

I went to one of Kabul’s hospitals and found survivors of the massacre there. They claim that they were not fired upon by mythical terrorists, but by the Americans.

Two women were sitting near the intensive care unit, where their wounded relative was being treated. On that Thursday, they were all together at the eastern gate of Kabul airport.

“When the explosion occurred, we ran and saw that there was shooting from the side of the Americans—they were hitting some in their abdomens, others in their heads,” recalls Najila Jan.

She got a Swedish visa online and hoped to fly out that day on one of the evacuation flights.

“There was a stampede, everyone ran. Apparently, the Americans thought that there was someone among us who could also explode,” said another woman, Shah Jan. “That’s why they were shooting. The explosion killed few people, the epicenter was on the side where the Americans were. And people died as a result of the stampede and from the fact that from all sides the Americans were shooting at the people.”

A girl quickly enters the intensive care unit, bringing with her some medicines. The hospital lacks not only medicines, but also the necessary equipment. Her brother has a head wound, but the clinic cannot even scan his brain. And, according to doctors, this is one of the best hospitals in the city.

“My husband lives in Australia. I wanted to fly to him,” says Rahmana Agvari. “After the explosion, the Americans started shooting from all sides. They fired to ensure their safety, they didn’t care who died.”

Rahmana was also wounded, but lightly—a shrapnel hit her neck, she lost hearing in her right ear.

“My brother was also wounded, I went into the terminal at that moment, and that’s why I survived,” says the man sitting next to her. “But then the shooting began. Even those who fell were fired on from the American side. There was a crowd, and there was a stampede…”

The man asks not to be named and not to show his face—he worked for the Ministry of Finance and is now afraid of persecution by the Taliban. But they [the Americans – S] did not help him with the flight, so he tried his luck with his brother.

“They were always so friendly, they called us friends, and then they just shot us point-blank,” the man says with dismay.

There’s a video of these eyewitness accounts at the end of the article.

Posted by: S | Aug 30 2021 23:42 utc | 131

Leaving ARTILLERY pieces, 105mm howitzers, intact isn’t a fuck up.
Same goes for the armor, and optics.
That’s too valuable to leave behind.
There was a deal made, and we may never know the details

Posted by: Cadence calls | Aug 30 2021 23:44 utc | 132

"Then there are those who believe that it's something of a moral imperative to vote for the greater of two evils, knowing full well that they are doing so, in the belief that the least horrible option among the possible ones is to thereby hasten the collapse of the system."
I don't know corvo. I get close to that "burn it all down NOW" place when I'm feeling bad or totally without hope, but overall I can't justify pushing for some kind of apocalypse. Maybe I'm too old, too comfortable. But I keep going back to Malcom X. People like that. Meanwhile I'm talking with neighbors, pushing a bit. Nodding my head sometimes. I still pull them out of the ditch and they do the same for me. I'm rural without the flags but my neighbors don't seem to hold it against me.

Posted by: migueljose | Aug 30 2021 23:50 utc | 133

@126 who knows what is in store for the future. All presidents have had debacles - Jimmy Carter's admin had Brzezinski and that wilson bastard campaigning for supporting the mujahidin in Afpak which caused the mess in the first place. It's important to celebrate good decisions and condemn bad decisions

Posted by: aaaa | Aug 30 2021 23:53 utc | 134

The reports of what happened in that airport entrance corridor are sickening.
I believe the US/mixed tower guards unleashed hell on a doomed mass of humanity.
Be it training, orders, etc.; That was an unholy execution of the unwashed.
God help us

Posted by: Cadence calls | Aug 30 2021 23:53 utc | 135

@ migueljose:

I get close to that "burn it all down NOW" place when I'm feeling bad or totally without hope, but overall I can't justify pushing for some kind of apocalypse.
I hear you. Following that argument to its logical conclusion (or is it a reductio ad absurdum?) we might as just nuke the planet now.
Meanwhile I'm talking with neighbors, pushing a bit. Nodding my head sometimes. I still pull them out of the ditch and they do the same for me.
I like to think that even if that's all we can do, it's still worth doing.

Posted by: corvo | Aug 30 2021 23:56 utc | 136

@132 It's possible but the military gear requires spare parts to operate, and China/Russia are not going to supply them due to treaty conventions. It might just be the simplest reason, that the Afghanistan military was completely unreliable and American leadership did not expect it to fold and go home on day one. Maybe USA will make an offer to buy back the gear or strike a deal if the Taliban institute reforms that are agreeable to the West

Posted by: aaaa | Aug 30 2021 23:57 utc | 137

China and Ecuador
China's Xi and Ecuador's Lasso had a love fest (phone conversation) yesterday in which they reaffirmed the importance of their relationship. Surprised me at how almost effusive Ecuador's neoliberal bankster Lasso was. If I were U.S. I would be worried and a bit jilted.

"For his part, Lasso said that on behalf of the Ecuadorian government and people, he would like to once again extend warm congratulations on the 100th anniversary of the founding of the Communist Party of China (CPC), and on the great achievements the CPC has led the Chinese people to make, including the poverty eradication and anti-pandemic fight."

"Ecuador opposes politicizing and stigmatizing the pandemic and hopes to continue to deepen vaccine cooperation with China, he said, adding that the Ecuadorian side regards China as its most important comprehensive strategic partner and welcomes more Chinese enterprises to conduct investment and cooperation in Ecuador."

Posted by: migueljose | Aug 31 2021 0:03 utc | 138

Leaving ARTILLERY pieces, 105mm howitzers, intact isn’t a fuck up. Same goes for the armor, and optics. That’s too valuable to leave behind. Unless…. S There was a deal made, and we may never know the details

Posted by: Cadence calls | Aug 30 2021 23:44 utc | 132

Oh, I don't know. It could be just a fuckup after all. Never, but never underestimate the stupidity of our leadership, especially those who've made entire careers of failing upwards, which is pretty much par for the course in the military. If there were any thought behind the fuckup, it may have been along the lines of "So what are those towelheads going to do with all that good stuff--wage war on China?"

After that it's all conspiracy theory, which often enough turns out to prove correct: Maybe the brass evacuated Bagram in such a way as to embarrass the president. If so, they certainly succeeded and can give themselves little pats on the back. Or maybe they cut some kind of deal with the Taliban, the details of which we won't know anything about for months or years if ever.

Myself, I'd just as soon the Taliban have all that good stuff anyway. The Taliban aren't in much position to wage full-scale war against any of their neighbors (assuming they'd even want to), for one thing, so if they use it, then probably in their own Panjshir Valley. As a taxpayer I figure I'll be helping to replace all of that good stuff anyway, because if we'd rescued it, we'd only commit industrial-scale murder somewhere else with it, and need to buy more.

Posted by: corvo | Aug 31 2021 0:09 utc | 139

aaaa 137

US position both within Afghanistan and domestically unsustainable. Within Afghanistan because they had alienated and made hostile virtually the entire population.
Domestically because they had to take the wind out of Trumps sails or any future Trump for that matter. It was simply a matter of developing a new strategy to ensure Afghanistan is scorched earth for Russia and China. That revolves around continued fighting and instability in Afghanistan. In the Trump era this was based around keeping the two sides in Afghanistan fighting for as long as possible. There was no attempt by US to reconcile the two sides, only the opposite. Taliban, I think with Russia and China have been able to neutralize that strategy.
The Biden strategy is continued and ongoing strikes - try to take out and disorganize leadership with intermittent strikes, the various terrorist factions they can support, be it through India or anyone else who has connections to terrorist groups
US agreement with taliban was that it does not harbor terrorist groups. It will now simply declare Taliban is harboring terrorist groups to 'justify' its future actions. ISIS-k, the new baddest of the bad, the evilest of the evil that must be eliminated has now been created.
There has been a pearl harbor which all good Americans require. The enemy for the good people of America and the vassals has now been created.

karlof1 put up a piece on Russia's actions at the UN. This will be another Iran nuke deal, another Syria. Russia will absolutely ensure Afghanistan's survival, but at the same time, Afghanistan will have to take and wear a lot of hits from the US without reacting to provocations. At some point, Russia may ensure Afghanistan has adequate air defense but for a time it will not even have that. When it comes to economy, Afghanistan is in even worse position than Syria

Fuck celebrating a 'good' decision by the Biden tribe.

Posted by: Peter AU1 | Aug 31 2021 0:23 utc | 140

Oldhippie @ 95:

There was one website I was reading last year - MoA actually did link to it but I forget which MoA post and attached comments thread - where there was a below-the-line discussion about COVID-19 mortality rates in the Scandinavian countries and how they compare.

(As an aside, my opinion is that in most ways, with respect to its COVID-19 response and the mortality figures, Sweden can't be compared to Denmark, Finland and Norway because of its larger population and the fact that minority groups from overseas make up a higher percentage of the Swedish population (about 25%, I believe) compared to their percentages in the populations of the smaller Nordic nations (about 15% and possibly lower for Finland). If anything the one European country Sweden can be compared to - with respect to population size and the size of major cities - is Belgium which unlike Sweden last year imposed lockdown on its population.)

The BTL discussion mentioned that Sweden runs its aged care homes and associated structures very differently from how Norway runs its aged care homes. Swedish aged care homes (or nursing homes if you like, though in some countries the terms can mean different types of institutions with respect to the level of care they provide) are the responsibility of municipal governments who outsource the management of these homes to for-profit companies. Aged care / nursing homes typically have hundreds of patients cared for by contract staff on low wages. The staff are more often than not drawn from refugee or immigrant (Third World) communities and most of these people work at least two or more shifts a day at different institutions just to make ends meet, and even work weekends.

The result is that COVID-19 spread fast through aged care homes and immigrant / refugee communities in Sweden, particularly in Stockholm. This situation was not helped by the fact that many if not most aged care / nursing home workers come from crowded, high-violence areas in Stockholm designated dangerous and off-limits by police so government offices providing information in languages like Somali were absent from those areas. Apparently about 80% of COVID-19 deaths occurred mainly in Greater Stockholm and an equivalent percentage of COVID-19 deaths occurred mainly among the elderly.

By contrast aged care / nursing homes in Norway and Denmark are smaller institutions (no more than 50 patients in each home) providing better care than the industrial factory care in Sweden.

I'm happy to be corrected by MoA barflies in Denmark, Norway and Sweden.

Posted by: Jen | Aug 31 2021 0:50 utc | 141

I know several people personally who have died since mid-2020 due to COVID. None were over 50 years of age, one was a diabetic but otherwise a healthy athlete, another was a teenager with no known health issues and another was a woman my age in a runoff for district attorney in West Texas. She was a runner since the track team at my high school. The YOY deaths are way in excess of 2019 so the idea that it's just a "flu" or whatever is silly at this point.

Sadly, I too think it's here to stay now and I'm going to scoff at yearly vax and booster shots for the rest of my life, but I will probably be coaxed to get one if this thing doesn't fade away. I highly doubt the doom and gloom of "billions of people dead due to the mRNA vaccine over the next few years" ever materializes, but who knows. I have a blood disorder and so does my wife (mine ITCP, hers something akin to the opposite - her blood clots too easily) and - knock on wood - 5 months and a successful pregnancy later we're doing OK. I guess some would be shocked that a pregnant woman would take the "experimental" shot, and maybe our son will grow a third head or something in the future. I would PREFER a traditional shot and will be taking that if and when it's available - and mainly so as not to pad the pockets of Moderna and Phizer (don't trust the Phizer vax with blood disorders either).

Posted by: Tom_Q_Collins | Aug 31 2021 1:09 utc | 142

Sure, maybe the US left it behind to help Taliban.
Or another group.
Above my pay grade
But to leave high tach military gear behind …… that’s on purpose.
That’s what I’m saying.

Posted by: Cadence calls | Aug 31 2021 1:22 utc | 143

Blinken & Wan Li: Afghanistan & U.S. China issues
Alexander Mercouris has another brilliant analysis of Blinken's call to Wang Li, in which Blinken got an ear full. Loaded. Mercouris also noted his own caution in trying to avoid being censored by YouTube, hence, he pointedly deleted using the word "Xinxiang" which he suggested would trigger a censor. almost 50 min. long
bottom line... Russia and China are rising and exposing U.S. through diplomatic channels which includes U.N. The curtain is being torn open and Blinken has no idea what to do about it.

Posted by: migueljose | Aug 31 2021 1:22 utc | 144

I remember the last time I bugged out.
I left a 5 foot tall pile of uselsss garbage.
I paid my way on that bug out, so there was no legal backlash
Dude got paid, and I got out

Posted by: Cadence calls | Aug 31 2021 1:25 utc | 145

Posted by: Tom_Q_Collins | Aug 31 2021 1:09 utc | 142

"I would PREFER a traditional shot". I agree Tom. My wife and I got the J&J in March, both are ok so far but... who knows? Covid can kill or debilitate you. The vaccines can kill or debilitate you, IMO but I really don't know. My first choice would be the Cuban vaccine just because I think they are so ethical. Followed by the Russian and then Sinovacs. Mexico might be a possiblity to travel to get one of those. They appear to be more organized and transparent in their covid work. They have the Russian and Chinese vaccines and might have Cuba's Soberana too.

Posted by: migueljose | Aug 31 2021 1:36 utc | 146

Jen 141

Although I often think you are Australian but never have been able to pick your country for sure and it doesn't matter, but what you have described re nursing homes and migrant workers is exactly the same here in Australia.

Posted by: Peter AU1 | Aug 31 2021 1:40 utc | 147

@Posted by: corvo | Aug 30 2021 20:25 utc | 109

[Re: delicious deaths of 'freedom still exists', 'vaccine is a free-choice' believers]

"we now have three small-fry", noted corvo

It isn't about the individuals
it is about the fruitful propaganda
and fear creation.

and "Democrat" voyeurism

Posted by: librul | Aug 31 2021 1:51 utc | 148

Peter AU1 @ 147:

Yes I am Australian, I am in Sydney.

Posted by: Jen | Aug 31 2021 1:55 utc | 149

It is always instructive to 'put the boot on the others foot' as b does in the next post on The Ukraine. The result is double standards and hypocrisy are often exposed.

Here is another example from Pearls & Irritations. This time starting with Afghanistan:

Sadly no mention of the barbarism and hypocrisy about Palestine.

Posted by: Paul | Aug 31 2021 2:17 utc | 150

Tom_Q_Collins @ 142, MiguelJose @ 146:

If the Novavax COVID-19 vaccine becomes available in your respective countries, most likely some time next year, you can try that one as that is based on older vaccine technologies that have been used to create influenza and hepatitis B vaccines.

From Medpage Today:

... For Novavax's protein subunit vaccine candidate (known as NVX-CoV2373), spike protein is made by infecting cultures of insect (Spodoptera frugiperda) cells with a baculovirus that's been altered to contain genes for making the spike. The cells then churn out spike proteins, which are purified and mixed with an adjuvant to make the vaccine.

The Novavax candidate contains the "Matrix-M" adjuvant, which is composed of the plant-derived glycoside saponin, cholesterol, and phospholipids.

Paul Offit, MD, director of the Vaccine Education Center at Children's Hospital of Philadelphia, said this is the exact same technology used in the Flublok influenza vaccine, and is similar to other purified protein vaccines that have been around for a long time, like the hepatitis B vaccine ...

Here is the Wikipedia article on the vaccine:

NVX-CoV2373 has been described as both a protein subunit vaccine[19][20][21] and a virus-like particle vaccine,[22][23] though the producers call it a "recombinant nanoparticle vaccine".[24]

... The vaccine is produced by creating an engineered baculovirus containing a gene for a modified SARS-CoV-2 spike protein. The spike protein was modified by incorporating two proline amino acids in order to stabilize the pre-fusion form of the protein; this same 2P modification is being used in several other COVID-19 vaccines ... The baculovirus then infects a culture of Sf9 moth cells, which create the spike protein and display it on their cell membranes. The spike proteins are then harvested and assembled onto a synthetic lipid nanoparticle [LNP] about 50 nanometers across, each displaying up to 14 spike proteins ...

The formulation includes a saponin-based adjuvant ...

The synthetic lipid nanoparticle bit might worry some people as the mRNA vaccines (Pfizer, Moderna) also use an LNP based on polyethylene glycol (PEG), a derivative of petroleum. Many people are allergic to PEG and it is possible that a lot of the side effects and reactions associated with the mRNA vaccines are actually those of the PEG compound in them.

Posted by: Jen | Aug 31 2021 2:51 utc | 151

@Rao 31
You are parroting BJP and RSS fascist propaganda. The difference between Kerala and other union states is that
- it is double as densely populated than the rest of india
- it has full health service to all inhabitants
- it is conducting fast testing of covid
- its fatality rate with 0.5 is the lowest in all of India

More important, there almost certainly is no in any way significant covid or covid deaths underreporting in Kerala.
As I already pointed out with mortality data from Madya Pradesh, in other states the covid death rates are vastly unterreported, mainly as medical facilities to accurately report them are vastly nonexistant. Scientific surveys (Asia Times reported) estimate the covid fatalities in India being underreported by a factor of 10.

Which means that the number of covid infections may be underreported by the factor of 20 at least, given the age structure in the Indian society, as most young and younger adolescents everywhere mostly suffer light to medium or even asymptomatic covid. Being somewhat sick won't hinder the about 800 million poor and absolutely poor to strive for their daily income, often without looking for medical support other than by popular medicine.

It is well possible that about half of the Indian population has already undergone a covid infection. That processs is certainly less obvious in a state with better health services.

Posted by: aquadraht | Aug 31 2021 2:52 utc | 152

Remember this from just before Trump's inauguration?

The House Minority Leader said Trump shouldn’t pick fights with the CIA and FBI because they have lots of ways to get back at the president-elect.

“Let me tell you: You take on the intelligence community, they have six ways from Sunday at getting back at you,” Schumer told Rachel Maddow (see video starting at 0:28). “For a practical, supposedly hard-nosed businessman, he’s being really dumb to do this.”

I would expand the above advice to include the Pentagon.

"You've been Bagram'ed"

You forgot to duck, Joe. You've been Bagram'ed.

Joe points the finger at the Pentagon and the Pentagon points the finger back at Joe:

The way U.S. forces quietly slipped out of Bagram was also demoralizing for the Afghan army and probably contributed to its collapse.

You've been Bagram'ed, Joe.

Posted by: librul | Aug 31 2021 4:01 utc | 153

Looking at the graphs for India at worldometers, I think India now has heard immunity Delta spread unhindered through India and would have gone through virtually the whole population in several months. For deaths, Peru's numbers per million will give an indication. Peru too I think now has immunity.

Posted by: Peter AU1 | Aug 31 2021 4:14 utc | 154

Qatar know how to be creative, soon they ll have an airline to get women out and a business ratline to get men in

Posted by: Mina | Aug 31 2021 8:21 utc | 155

S' comment about Apple (no. 37) inspired me to write my own story as to my loss of interest in Apple.

I used to be a big Apple fanboy from 2011 until 2016, although the reasons behind my abandonment of the Macintosh platform had less to do with censorship and surveillance and more to do with customizability, longevity, and upgradability.

* I gave the classic Mac OS (pre-X) a try back in 2014, and after seeing that one could change e.g. the colors of certain user interface elements, it left me disappointed with the inability to do the same in Mac OS X. Even Windows XP and 7 allowed one to do the same, and to this day Windows 10 still does, although not to the degree that one can with a typical Linux distro.

* It appears that compatibility of Mac OS X software is hit or miss even when it comes to software written for the Intel architecture, and this was an occurrence even before they announced that they'd drop support for 32-bit software.
Case in point, the real reason I wanted a Mac in the first place was so I could play this Mac-exclusive game called GooBall. After I beat the game, I let it sit in my MacBook Pro for a year or two, and when I upgraded to a newer version, the game could no longer run. (Why they never made a Windows version is another story.)

* I don't know about you, but I find it unfortunate to not be able to run pre-2006 Mac software on today's versions of the Mac OS, let alone out of the box.

* Even then it's still relatively more difficult to virtualize older versions of Mac OS on today's Mac OS X than it is to virtualize older versions of Windows on today's Windows or Linux.

* New releases of the Mac OS often drop support for certain older Mac models. Planned obsolescence, anyone?

* Newer models of Mac hardware had begun to use proprietary components soldered into the motherboard (such as RAM and solid-state storage), replacing ones that were previously replaceable and off-the-shelf. (S did mention something about Apple's attempts to prevent independent repair shops from servicing Apple devices. This may or may not overlap.)

* Locking OS system software to a single vendor's hardware, while offering a more integrated experience, can and may deprive the end user of any alternatives should the hardware vendor do something he/she doesn't like.

That's when I moved over to a Lenovo Thinkcenter as my main computer, albeit with Ubuntu Linux installed. Haven't looked back to the Mac ever since, nor have I regretted it.

Posted by: Josep | Aug 31 2021 9:45 utc | 156

Josep & S

US money always comes under the control of the state. Starts ups make money, they then have something to lose. The US so called intelligence community can ensure this can be lost at any time. Very few put ethics above money.

With apple, There was a court case where FBI wanted apples encryption keys. It ended when FBI said it didn't need it as they had broken the encryption. It was obvious then that apple had come aboard though even that may have been theater. Many so called world leaders had apple glued to their ear. No chance deep state would allow new money to control that.
In Donbass, a number of leaders came to the fore meritocracy wise. They had apple and were taken out one after the other.

Posted by: Peter AU1 | Aug 31 2021 10:09 utc | 157

So, the report on COVID origins requested by Biden in May has been release. One summary is here:

The interesting bit for me is how it

explicitly stated that U.S. intelligence assessed that the virus was not a “bioweapon”

Which means that it almost certainly was.

Posted by: Idiocrates | Aug 31 2021 11:48 utc | 158

The ignominious end of the American era

Future students of history will remember August 30, 2021, as the end of the American era.

My opinion is that the end of the American era was September 15th, 2008, when Lehman Brothers signed for bankruptcy, thus bursting the financial meltdown that everybody here knows about.

But yes, I agree Afghanistan August 30th, 2021, is more graphic - specially because it was just your plain military defeat.

WaPo today came out with an op-ed claiming that the USA could rise from the ashes like it did from Saigon. I disagree with him and argue the polar opposite. In my view, Afghanistan is the prelude for decay of the American Empire - instead of a rebirth - for many reasons:

1) Kabul is not Saigon. The Taliban is not the Vietnamese Communist Party. The only similarity is the helicopter scene, but that's an infantile association;

2) Vietnam was an outright blunder. It was a completely unnecessary war in every sense of the word - including in the sense that American imperialism didn't need it to consolidate its position. The USSR was never involved with the CPV. The CPV's ultimate victory didn't result in any geopolitical gain for the USSR. The American economy was at its apex, it didn't need the war - in fact, Lyndon B. Johnson once said exactly that: that the war was happening precisely because the American economy was flourishing, not vice versa. The Vietnam War was a demented dream of a cabal of neocon priests based on a pseudo-scientific theory (Domino Theory). Afghanistan was completely different: it was a war for a presence in the Heartland, the single most important geopolitical region in the world. It had concrete reasons to be from the point of view of the American Empire;

3) Biden's claim that he's withdrawing from Afghanistan to focus on annihilating China doesn't make any logical sense. American domination of Afghanistan would help its struggle against China immensely. It would forever make Xinjiang a living hell to the Chinese. The loss of Afghanistan therefore hindered, not helped, the USA "focus" against China;

4) the defeat in Afghanistan happens in a moment of economic decline of the American economy, which is, by the way, also being castigated by a plague. When the Vietnam War was over, the American economy was past its prime, but was still extremely robust, and had a lot of ace in its sleeves to play in the medium to long terms. Indeed, it manage to soften (but not stop) the decline five years later with the neoliberal reforms of Carter-Reagan. This time, there's no perspective for the American people at all;

5) last but not least, the fact that the USA is out of Central Asia. This is an undeniable fact that objectively hurts the USA's world empire. Even if you're a rabid neocon, you have to admit that losing key territory is never good for any empire.

Posted by: vk | Aug 31 2021 12:23 utc | 159

US (& nato) is f**king with Afghanistan on it's way out the door.
No surprises there.

The Saker posted a translation from the Russian rep speaking before the United Nations Security Council.

At the same time, we had to abstain during the vote on the draft SC resolution on Afghanistan.

We had to do this because the authors of the draft had ignored our principled concerns.

Firstly, despite the fact that the draft resolution was proposed against the backdrop of a heinous terrorist attack, the sponsors refused to mention ISIL and “Eastern Turkistan Islamic Movement” – the organizations that are internationally recognized as terrorist – in the paragraph on counter-terrorism. We interpret it as unwillingness to recognize the obvious and an inclination to divide terrorists into “ours” and “theirs”. Attempts to “downplay” threats emanating from these groups are unacceptable.

Secondly, during the negotiations we emphasized the unacceptability and negative impacts of evacuation of Afghan highly qualified personnel for Afghanistan’s socio-economic situation. If experiencing a “brain drain”, the country will not be able to achieve Sustainable Development Goals. These elements that are vital for the Afghan people were nor reflected in the text of the resolution.

Thirdly, the authors ignored our proposal to have the document state the adverse effects that freezing of Afghan financial assets had on the economic and humanitarian situation in the country, and mention the fact that humanitarian assistance to Afghanistan must imperatively comply with the UN guiding principles, stipulated in UNGA resolution 46/182.

"Different day, same shit"

It isn't long, read the whole thing.

Posted by: librul | Aug 31 2021 12:38 utc | 160

@aquadraht 152
All I am giving is a status update of cases in India. It is for the readers to draw conclusions. Most of my posts are fact based unless it is about covid prophylaxis(I believe and use ivermectin for me and family to avoid getting jabbed by the govt as long as possible)
A good daily report (factual) of vivid cases statewise is as follows
link to daily covid cases in India

Posted by: R M Rao | Aug 31 2021 13:14 utc | 161

@oldhippie #120
How many people over age 70 do you know?
Unless you're in the senior care business, most people under the age of 50 don't know very many 70+ outside of their direct relatives.
Nor are the 70+ *that* common running around the street or the stores.
So it isn't surprising to me that you (and I) haven't had direct contact with people who have died from COVID.
However, I know at least 25 people who have confirmed cases of COVID and none of them died or were even hospitalized. All were under 70 but most were under 50.

Posted by: c1ue | Aug 31 2021 15:55 utc | 162

@S #127
Graphene OS is a mobile OS - and no mobile is secure period.
As such, putting this up as some shining example of security is inane.

Furthermore, graphene is still part of the Android universe - meaning it sucks in Android updates. I will presume the Graphene team actually look at each update but this cannot be assumed going forward forever, nor does this make Graphene less vulnerable to origin OS code supply chain problems like ImageTragick/ImageMagick.

The only reason more cracks aren't reported on it are because nobody is using it. Get even 10M active users and that might change, but the people who crack OS's for a living don't bother unless there's a market for it.

Posted by: c1ue | Aug 31 2021 16:05 utc | 163

@ c1ue | Aug 31 2021 15:55 utc | 162... pretty sure oldhippie is in his 70's, or thereabouts..

Posted by: james | Aug 31 2021 16:06 utc | 164

@oldhippie and others

Obesity Linked to Lower Vitamin D Levels

Dec. 17, 2010 -- New research adds to the evidence linking obesity with lower levels of vitamin D, and the finding could help explain why carrying extra pounds raises the risk for a wide range of diseases, researchers say.

“Much of the vitamin D produced in the skin or ingested is distributed in fat tissue,” she says. “So obese people may take in as much vitamin D from the sun, food, or supplements as people who are not obese, but their [blood] levels will tend to be lower.”

An unanswered question is
does age affect vitamin D metabolism?
It is one thing to have enough vitamin D circulating in the blood,
but it has to be metabolized (enzymes) to be useful.
And then the follow up question of whether that process can be
optimized in the elderly and is anyone paying attention to this question.
Also, which elderly-used drugs are inhibiting the process...........

Posted by: librul | Aug 31 2021 16:26 utc | 165

@Posted by: james | Aug 31 2021 16:06 utc | 164

You could be mistaken.

Posted by: librul | Aug 31 2021 16:28 utc | 166

c1ue @Aug31 16:05 #163

I agree that security is a thorny issue. Security seems to be mostly relative. Very difficult to get absolute security where communications are concerned. But the fact is that attackers will mostly go after the low-hanging fruit of commercially-available systems. As the old joke says: to escape a lion, you only have to run faster then the others.

In addition, people don't work on FOSS because others are using it or to make $$. FOSS never would have even started if that was the motivation.

Enough talented people are unhappy with commercial products that they write the code. Its a labor of love -like artistry - or perhaps a FU to the corporate jerks they serve for a paycheck. There is also the personal satisfaction (and kudos from peers) for doing what you can to make the world a better place. The users, and other developers, come after.

IIRC, you support digital currencies. There were no "users" for bitcoin when it started.


Posted by: Jackrabbit | Aug 31 2021 16:36 utc | 167

Not sure if this was posted
(originally appeared in Medium)
But why republished by al Ahram Weekly? I have never seen such a long 'opinion' column in that journal.

Posted by: Mina | Aug 31 2021 16:49 utc | 168

In the Ivory Coast, a TV program had yesterday an ex-prisoner condemned for rape explaining to the host how to rape a woman and whether some of the gestures excited her.
I can't find a single report in English via Google News...
So here it is in French

(PS: The Ivory Coast is in the hands of Ouattara, put here by the US in Spring 2011 instead of Laurent Gbagbo, 'the man of France' til then; Macron was on official visit a couple of months ago. And yes, they had terrorist attacks by IS in the latest years)

Posted by: Mina | Aug 31 2021 16:56 utc | 169

And now this, about the Ford column

Posted by: Mina | Aug 31 2021 16:59 utc | 170

Too bad, just when we learn that gargling solution and nasal sprays can help cleaning up covid in the first days and after exposure, the best gargling tablets in Germany are unavailable in all the pharmacies.

Posted by: Mina | Aug 31 2021 17:06 utc | 171

@163 c1ue:

I agree that any piece of software with auto-update is not secure. I haven't checked, but is GrapheneOS doing auto-update? Do you have to turn it on?

Also, does the carrier (e.g. Verizon) have any say about whether you do auto-update, and do they have a say about whether they support GrapheneOS (or any other OS)?

Do they just care about comm protocol support, or are there other APIs or functionality which must be supported by the phone, which would enable them to block installation/usage of "non-conforming" OSes? My guess is they keep a tight rein on this, but maybe not...

I'm glad to see people talking about getting control of their phones. To the degree that the smart-phone is our window to the world...we should pay close attention to how that window actually works, and who actually owns it.

Posted by: Tom Pfotzer | Aug 31 2021 17:09 utc | 172

Posted by: migueljose | Aug 30 2021 17:49 utc | 101

"Thanks for the link Arby. very good interview"

Yes, I thought so.
The US operations are very sophisticated, thorough and cover all the bases.
I was impressed. They don't mess around.

Posted by: arby | Aug 31 2021 17:36 utc | 173

Librul @65

Good questions on Vitamin D
One issue with obesity and VitD is the more fat you have the more vitD you need because the fat ties up vitD and makes it unavailable (unless the fat is used)

MedCram has several good videos on vitamin D and Covid. Here is one:

Posted by: jinn | Aug 31 2021 17:56 utc | 174

@ librul | Aug 31 2021 16:28 utc | 166.. talking with o h on the music scene in chicago is how i base my guess... early to mid 70's. lol... he had an uncle who played with willie dixon and on a number of chess recordings... do you know who that is ??

Posted by: james | Aug 31 2021 18:25 utc | 175

Yes, I am 69 years of age. Old enough that attending funerals and memorial services is part of the normal routine. And no, there is nothing normal now. But the death notices do come and there are cards and flowers and donations to suggested charities and all that. And no one is dying of covid. And no one is dying of vaccines. People do talk. I do hear all the time about those who had or have a case and many more alarms because someone tested positive. If someone died I would hear. If someone were sick enough to be hospitalized I would hear.

Reading what Zeug Gezeugt posted @ 124 I have to believe him. If that was written by a bot or a disinformation troll then they are so good we will never unmask them and never see clearly. Still, no one has said anything like that to my face or over the phone or by email nor have I heard of such a thing at second hand through personal contact. And best wishes to Zeug, symptoms at that level are likely to presage further trouble down the road.

I would like to believe Pierre Kory and Peter McCullough and Robert Malone. And if those are disinformers or controlled opposition they are phenomenal actors. Greatest actors ever. If I had just one personal experience that lined up with what they are saying it would all make sense. I am waiting for that personal experience.

James, the uncle was Fred Rundquist. Not my blood uncle, he was everyone’s uncle. Though he was my sister in laws uncle. Everyone is Swedish here. Fred did thousands of recording sessions at Chess Studios. Leonard Chess always disbelieved the black artists were going to show up and Fred was there to cover. And yes, he could, and yes there are recordings credited to name blues artists where the guitar part is Fred. It did not happen often and it could have been worked around without using the white guy but that is what Leonard did. My sister in law is still getting royalty checks from Chess for some of those old sessions, which the name artists never saw. Fred kept going down to S. State Street because it meant the opportunity to hear and learn from great musicians. He worked with lots of great white musicians too but not the same. Upfront he got paid the same pittance the other session players did. Otherwise he was a union musician who worked three and four gigs a day seven days a week. He lost money by playing at Chess. He saw it as paying tuition.

Posted by: Oldhippie | Aug 31 2021 20:36 utc | 176

@ james , librul

Willie Dixon was active in the 1970s, so if oldhippie was 70 he could have played with Willie himself. I think the story was that his uncle was a stalwart that Leonard Chess called upon.

If you want to date oldhippie here's an idea: he said that he has been mistaken for that hack that wrote about the civilized nations broadporting blistering barnicle battleships.

Posted by: Platero | Aug 31 2021 20:48 utc | 177

Oopsies. South Michigan Avenue, not State.

Posted by: Oldhippie | Aug 31 2021 21:27 utc | 178

Soros gets it wrong again.

From today's behind the paywall AFR:

"What investors need to understand about Xi Jinping and markets
George Soros is wrong. It’s not that Chinese president Xi Jinping fails to understand how markets operate – he just thinks they should be at the service of the Chinese state."

Posted by: Paul | Aug 31 2021 22:07 utc | 179

Two rats are leaving the sinking ship, or "Two Senior FDA Officials Stepping Down", in other words.

One of them is Mrs Marion Gruber, a native German who was instrumental for Pfizer et al. in the vaccine push. Like her boss Mrs Janet Woodcock, who at 73 is even older than Mrs Gruber, Mrs Gruber never heard of spike proteins, furin-cleavage sites, ADE or a substance called 2-[(polyethylene glycol)-2000]-N,N-ditetradecylacetamide before the good people of Pfizer came knocking on her door. But whatever she hasn't learned during these last months, she may yet learn come fall and winter.

Posted by: Scotch Bingeington | Aug 31 2021 22:15 utc | 180

Quantum computer chip, not if but when:

Archer, AXE - ASX, has made considerable strides this year in the early-stage development of our 12CQ quantum computing qubit processor chip, with wonderful achievements technologically, expanded access to world-class deep-tech infrastructure, and the granting of related patents in Japan, China, and South Korea.

USA patent pending.

Posted by: Paul | Sep 1 2021 0:24 utc | 181

The hasbara troll dis-information army:

Created because of constant news items like this:

Posted by: Paul | Sep 1 2021 1:21 utc | 182

What I want to know is who tells these judges how to think/rule on cases like this????...they can't even do a simple search of wikipedia before they call it"horse paste"??? Will they voluntarily step down when they are proven wrong?

An Illinois judge has ruled against a woman who sought to force doctors to provide her unvaccinated husband with ivermectin to treat severe COVID-19, after a hospital warned that administering the so-called "horse paste" remedy would turn the man into a "guinea pig."

It's one of several lawsuits around the country seeking to force doctors to provide ivermectin, which is normally used to treat people and livestock for parasitic worms. Ivermectin is being pushed by COVID-19 anti-vaxxers in online forums as the latest version of the Trumpian drug hydroxychloroquine. With doctors and pharmacists refusing to provide ivermectin to treat COVID-19, some have turned to farm supply stores to obtain the drug, resulting in overdoses and prompting a warning from the FDA.

Posted by: psychohistorian | Sep 1 2021 2:34 utc | 183

Below is a Xinhuanet posting showing China setting example for others....especially their position on housing for living in not for investing/speculation

BEIJING, Aug. 31 (Xinhua) -- China will focus on the development of government-subsidized rental housing in the 14th Five-Year Plan period (2021-2025) to ensure the housing security for the people.

The country has built over 80 million sets of government-subsidized and renovation housing, improving the living conditions of more than 200 million people with difficulties, Wang Menghui, minister of housing and urban-rural development, told a press conference Tuesday.

China's great achievement in setting up the world's largest housing security system has actively contributed to the country's success in building a moderately prosperous society in all respects, Wang added.

Among the different types of government-subsidized housing, the rental housing is built to mainly address the concerns of new dwellers and young people in big cities, while shared-ownership housing is mainly designed for people who can not afford commercial housing to improve their living conditions, said Wang.

China vowed to tackle prominent housing problems in large cities at the tone-setting Central Economic Work Conference held in December last year, listing the development of rental housing as one of its key economic tasks for 2021.

In this year's government work report, China reiterated the principle that "housing is for living in, not for speculation" for the third time since it was first proposed in 2016, vowing to keep the prices of land and housing as well as market expectations stable.

Posted by: psychohistorian | Sep 1 2021 4:44 utc | 184

Below is another Xinhuanet posting and this shows what leadership is all about

BEIJING, Sept. 1 (Xinhua) -- Chinese students are returning to classrooms for the new school semester.

Chinese President Xi Jinping has attached great importance to young people, encouraging them to study hard and achieve well-rounded development. He has on many occasions expressed what he expects of young Chinese.

The following are some highlights of his quotes.

-- A person can have a lot of aspirations but the most important one should be about the motherland and people. This is the anchor of all concrete aspirations and the backbone of life.

-- Students should strive to have pure hearts, sound personalities and integrity; they should be educated, compassionate and ready to take on responsibilities.

-- I hope students stay hungry for knowledge, stay interested in exploration, cultivate the spirit of science, study hard and commit to practice.

-- We should adopt the educational philosophy that health comes first; make P.E. lessons a regular feature of the curriculum and devote enough time to them; help students enjoy physical exercise, improve their physical fitness, develop sound personalities and temper their will.

-- Young people should dare to dream. Spaceships, submarines [and other things] envisioned in classics from Chinese mythological novel "Journey to West" to Jules Verne's science fiction have all become real, haven't they? While dreaming big, young people also need to keep their feet on the ground and study hard, so as to make the dreams come true.

-- A nation will prosper only when its young people thrive; a country will be full of hope and have a great tomorrow only when its younger generations have ideals, ability and a strong sense of responsibility.

Posted by: psychohistorian | Sep 1 2021 4:48 utc | 185

Posted by: Oldhippie | Aug 31 2021 20:36 utc | 176

Perhaps I am wrong, but in my far distant memory, Booker T & The MG's recorded at Chess. Bravo, Big Train and Green Onions and go the blues.

I'll drink another Barossa Valley, South Australian red just for the memory.

Posted by: Paul | Sep 1 2021 7:36 utc | 186

Seems appropriate

Posted by: Mina | Sep 1 2021 10:01 utc | 187

What is it that Germany and Brunei have that others don't have ?? (apart from money)

Posted by: Mina | Sep 1 2021 12:47 utc | 188

Quick comment:

Lumping together all of Stalin’s legacy to discredit his WWII leadership is an attempt to weaken modern Russia, FM Lavrov claims

It ends with this standardized journalistic paragraph:

Stalin, born in Georgia as Joseph Jughashvili, became leader of the USSR in 1924, following the death of revolutionary Vladimir Lenin. The legacy of the former leader splits opinion inside modern Russia. For some, he is a hero for his leadership through World War II, but for another segment of society, he was a tyrant who led a repressive and murderous regime. For others, he is a mixture of the two.

This information is objectively wrong.

Stalin didn't become leader of the USSR in 1924.

First, the office of "leader" didn't exist and never existed in the USSR: nobody knew how the system would work, and there wasn't one specific office that made you the chief of the executive and the armed forces of the USSR. There was the office of president of the USSR, but that was more like a title created with the clear intent of giving a lifetime achievement title for Lenin himself. The chaotic and heavily decentralized system of the USSR was so confused that some even consider Sverdlov as the first head-of-state of the USSR. Lenin was also the president of Sovnarkom.

The only constant of the Soviet system, present from its very beginning (when it was still called the RSFSR) to its very end, was that the de facto governing body was the Politburo of the VKP(B) [KPSS]. That's the reason Russia/USSR didn't disintegrate even during the chaotic days of the Revolution and Civil War. It was only with time and necessity that the VKP(B) consolidated as the de facto Soviet State itself. By that time, it was found out that the General Secretary was the most powerful office of the new system - but that was not obvious at all during the first years of the Revolution. After WWII, the system consolidated itself around a scheme where, in order to be the equivalent of the POTUS or a Prime Minister of the USSR, one had to accumulate two offices: general secretary of the VKP(B) and president of the Supreme Soviet (more importantly, of its presidium); this system of dual office exists in China until the present times.

Just to give you a picture of how experimental the Soviet system was: in the aftermath of the Revolution, it was intended that the Supreme Soviet should be the absolute authority of the RSFSR (USSR). It was unpractical in reality, and it slowly and silently slid towards a ceremonial function to the presidium. It only exerted absolute power once: the decision to sign the Brest-Litovsk Treaty of 1918.

Second, Stalin didn't succeed Lenin. For starters, the system was heavily experimental as already stated, so it was in flux. Secondly, Lenin was the absolute leadership because of individual merit, not because of the offices he had or didn't have. Thirdly, Stalin wasn't Lenin's "favorite": by logical order of political succession, Trotsky was the favorite (as Lenin's personal favorite), followed by Zinoviev (the closest to Lenin). It was Zinoviev - not Stalin - who consecrated the term "Leninism", precisely to prop himself up in a theoretical battle for succession. Even if you exclude these two, you could still argue in an institutionalist line that Stalin would still be behind Kamenev in this line of succession, as he was the president of the Moscow VKP(B).

Stalin would only become the obvious most powerful member of the VKP(B) in 1926, after Trotsky's defeat, and only become the de facto leadership of the USSR by 1928, after the defeat of the rightist deviation of the party. By that time, the doctrine of "Socialism in One Country" was already the common sense of the vast majority of the Soviet people. Stalin rose to power because of the hegemony of "Socialism in One Country", not the contrary; and because the system revealed that the power of organization of the Party was more important that anything else. Trotsky and Zinoviev were intellectuals with no popular base, who were only effective Party members and State servants under tutelage and direct guidance of Lenin; when he died, they became just random intellectuals.

Last but not least, there's Lavrov's speech:

“I absolutely agree that history must not be touched,” he told the war veterans. “By the way, attacks on Stalin as the main villain, lumping together everything he did before, during, and after the war, is also part of that very attack on our past and the outcome of World War II.”

There are many reasons why this falsification of History is perpetuated until the present day, none of them having nothing to do with Russia and everything to do with Communism:

1) The non-Stalinist Left in the West (from the social-democrats to the Trotskyists) need to amalgamate all of Stalin's "crimes" together because the legitimacy of Stalin's policies lie on one fact alone: war was coming and the USSR had to industrialize at breakneck speed at all costs. By stating his policies actually retarded industrialization and dismantled the Red Army, they can paint Stalin's policy as an absolute failure, whereas the opposite argument would completely vindicate him;

2) The liberals, in addition to #1 (which they topple with some anachronistic humanitarian arguments), also can claim that it was the USA, not the USSR, that defeated the Third Reich and therefore the world, thus putting capitalism as different from nazi-fascism while painting it as the true progressive force for humanity instead of socialism.

Posted by: vk | Sep 1 2021 13:34 utc | 189

@ Paul

B T and MGs were Stax records in Memphis. Competed with Motown in Detroit. But, yeah, they could groove.

Posted by: Platero | Sep 1 2021 13:59 utc | 190

@ Mina

Not sure why appropriate, but thanks anyway. And, hey, Max Roach !!

Posted by: Platero | Sep 1 2021 14:01 utc | 191

Maybe more appropriate is this . And I had thought that Theresa's closed down in 81.

Posted by: Platero | Sep 1 2021 14:04 utc | 192

Thank you for your trio of posts here this morning, psychohistorian. The ivermectin one is particularly important as the next wave of the virus may involve persons who followed the rules based order with respect to vaccines, but discover they are still vulnerable to whatever new version of it comes to their neighborhood. Maybe even they have taken a third or fourth shot, and still have contracted version XYZ - what then to do?

The suppression of alternatives when all has failed is not the worst crime in a series of assaults upon such a person's natural immunity. It is simply, as you say, the final straw. I remember with polio all sorts of excellent therapies were promoted well before the final vaccines, and certainly we could have been trying our older medications such as ivermectin well before this. In China, I remember, the traditional therapies were not suppressed, they were recommended as known supports, tried and true. There is so much guesswork, because there has been so much disinformation bruited about. To use an analogy; the study of the problem has become a minefield. How to clear it? We all pitch in, and indeed sunlight is the best disinfectant there is. Plus positivity, which we do not see down here in the weeds.

And that goes to your post on schools and young people. Here it is abysmal what is happening to children as the virus seeks new victims. Home schooling is the answer, and if you cannot do it fulltime, form a team with your neighbors so one parent has a small group of kids once a week - if my old person math is correct, that's a group of seven. Never mind the ages - and never mind the subjects - I taught English using Robert Frost's poems, learned along with the kids. It can be done! Keep them safe!

Posted by: juliania | Sep 1 2021 14:20 utc | 193

Great synopsis by commenter 'TAE Summary' over at The Automatic Earth:

How to Win at Covid 19 Chess

* The Opening or Fauci’s Gambit: Engineer a virus that is somewhat deadlier than the flu. Release it and obfuscate the origins. Report worldwide deaths 24/7 to get people scared.

* The Middlegame or The Orthodox System: Block available treatments and roll-out draconian and painful measures until a novel, somewhat safe and somewhat effective but ultimately leaky therapy can be created. This will ensure the virus spreads worldwide and mutates, prolonging the crisis indefinitely. Use the media and governments to convince everyone that the new therapy is their only hope of returning to ‘normal’. Vilify anyone who says otherwise as haters of humanity.

* The Endgame or Zugzwang: Once people are convinced that the new therapy is their only hope, tell them that for the safety of all they must have continuing proof that their therapy is up-to-date in the form of a global, digital record required for admittance to any place where there are other people including shops, churches, travel and entertainment venues. Give this ‘passport’ a star-studded yet guilt-driven and threatening ad campaign and link it to a sexy technology like block-chain to make it hip and popular.

* Checkmate or The Smothered Mate: Once the passport is in place you can expand its criteria to include anything you want and people who refuse will be unable to function in the modern world. You have achieved total control of much of the world population. Your ability to predict people’s response 13 moves in advance has paid off. Clear the board at will.

Posted by: john | Sep 1 2021 15:30 utc | 194

They have been training on leaky vaccines:

Posted by: Mina | Sep 1 2021 15:41 utc | 195

@ Oldhippie | Aug 31 2021 20:36 utc | 176.. thank you... quote "He lost money by playing at Chess. He saw it as paying tuition." the life of a musician... we don't do it for the money.. i can tell others that much.. regarding your comment on malone - my brother follows him on twitter and watches all his videos and would agree with you... i like the man too..

@ Paul | Sep 1 2021 7:36 utc | 186... there is a stax museum in memphis right where the recording studio used to be.. if you ever get a chance, go visit it.. i think you and others would enjoy it.. we certainly did!

@ mina 187... you listen to monkey jungle?? that is very cool.... 3 of the greatest jazz musicians on one recording... can't be that! i got to see max roach once, but wasn't old enough to see duke and mingus... oh well...

Posted by: james | Sep 1 2021 15:57 utc | 196


Correct musicians don’t do it for the money. Most are entirely incapable of anything but music. They don’t have a choice, it’s music or nothing.

And now I will tell you how unusual Fred was. He died with a substantial estate. All from making union scale on gigs. Endlessly gigging. I did mention royalties but those checks are quite small. Fred left the union local half a million. His guitar collection was given to music schools. They all auctioned them off, the total was around 2 million. My sister in law was the only living relative, she got 5 mil. And I am very proud to say she gave it all away. He was not a brilliant money manager, just a cheapskate. He was holding the bag for Lehman Brothers, lost 3 mil just before he died by holding LB until the end.

Posted by: Oldhippie | Sep 1 2021 16:20 utc | 197

@Posted by: Oldhippie | Sep 1 2021 16:20 utc | 197

"Correct musicians don’t do it for the money."

Pretty sure everyone realizes that you meant to have a comma after the word Correct.
After all, what would "correct musicians" be? - Politically Correct musicians?
No way.

Not to quibble, but I remember Davy Jones relating that he did it for the girls.

He, by coincidence, performed on the Ed Sullivan Show during a program that included
The Beatles.

Jones, only 18 at the time, was blown away by the sheer adulation of the Beatles’ fans – both inside and outside the studio.

He later said of the night: ‘I watched the Beatles from the side of the stage. I saw the girls going crazy and I said to myself, this is it. I want a piece of that.’

Posted by: librul | Sep 1 2021 16:51 utc | 198

It's yet again another September first and the traditional opening day of school holiday in Russia. This year, Putin's in Vladivostok addressing children there in person and those of the nation via video. He has an important announcement:

"First of all, I would, of course, like to congratulate the little first-grade pupils who will go to school for the first time, as well as their parents, mothers, grandmothers and educators. In reality, we always do this, and this is the right thing to do because high school pupils are already in a sort of preset mode, they meet with their friends and peers, this is a continuation of the academic process they get accustomed to from the second or third grade. However, first-grade pupils are opening a new page in life, they are facing a new destiny, beginning to acquire knowledge and to choose their place in life and their subsequent careers.

"This is a highly important period in the life of little children. As bureaucrats say in such cases, I would like to take advantage of this opportunity and to ask all other Russian school pupils to give a warm welcome to the little children at the schools and to support them all the way, in the direct sense of the word and figuratively speaking. This is the first thing that I wanted to say.

"Secondly, you know that we have reinstated the Soviet-era, and later Russian, Znaniye [Knowledge] Society that aims to help people, and young people to find their place in life and to choose an interesting direction that will fascinate them, so that he or she will want to commit the rest of his or her life to it."

What!!?? No teaching to the test as done within the Outlaw US Empire. Going back to--GASP--a "Soviet-era" institution (we were told all of those were abject failures) that promotes a knowledge-based philosophy that understands that all people have talents and can contribute to society. Here in the West, we have no need for such a society when everything one needs to know can be found via computer. Here's Putin's retort:

"Of course, there are many so-called information resources in the modern world, including the internet and Runet. You name it, they got it. And it appears that users can learn just about anything there, including information about the stars, the centre of the earth, tacks, nails and diamonds. But there is a problem linked with the quality of this information. There is a lot of information rubbish which is often presented as the ultimate truth. But we should not trust this information which is provided by people posing as specialists, rather than real professionals.

"Znaniye Society and its work involve real professionals specialising in every narrow field of knowledge, and it is certainly possible to trust them and to base one’s own perceptions of any specific phenomenon and its future development on their information and to decide whether it is interesting to you personally and whether it is something you would be ready to devote your entire life to later on." [My Emphasis]

So, Znaniye Society will act as a sort of alternative, trustworthy, Wiki along the lines of career counselors whose job is to guide a student to discover his/her intellectual bliss.

And as is his custom, Putin will deliver a lecture of sorts based on his own expertise; and after a short revelation of his CV, he honestly concedes:

"Then there is another field – as they say, wake me up in the middle of the night and I will tell you anything concerning domestic and foreign policy. I could have chosen this topic if I had wanted to.

"But I chose history as today’s subject. I do not really consider myself a specialist or an expert, so this will not be a real lesson – just a conversation on the proposed theme. An exchange.

"So why do you think I picked this specific field? Firstly, it is quite fascinating. Secondly, it is very important and covers a whole range of matters. In fact, history is the pivot, the foundation of all humanitarian knowledge including literature, music, philosophy, natural sciences, and so on. Learning all this is extremely important because we are interested in knowing how things were done before; it is even more important because it helps us understand the world we are living in today and the future we are heading into."

As a historian, I couldn't provide any better reasoning for my field of study, which unfortunately is done so disgustingly poorly here in Liberal LaLa Land where it's deemed you really don't need to know any history at all, not even your own.

The English transcript isn't finished yet, but I was going to end my comment at this point and highly suggest barflies click the link and read Putin's lesson for today that he gave to all Russia's schoolkids, professors, parents, and others, for it's not at all what any Western leader has to say to his people, not even close. Sputnik has an article some may have read already that gives part of Putin's lesson that's not yet in the English transcript away. So yes, I would regard this as a very serious national address by Russia's President. Yet, the audience that really needs the lecture isn't Russians; it's those residing within the Outlaw US Empire and its vassals.

Posted by: karlof1 | Sep 1 2021 17:04 utc | 199

Biden has nominated Rahm Emanuel as U.S. ambassador to Japan.

Can Rahm curse and swear in Japanese?
Rahm is infamous for his constant stream of foul language.

Rahm likely couldn't be bothered to learn Japanese,
so his diplomatic counterparts in Japan will have to
bone up on Rahm's sewer-dialect.

Honor and shame still matter in Japan.

Rahm's family name is actually: Filth.

Emanuel’s father Benjamin was part of the Israeli assassin team that murdered Sweden’s Count Folke Bernadotte in ’48.

Posted by: librul | Sep 1 2021 17:09 utc | 200

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