Moon of Alabama Brecht quote
February 26, 2023

The MoA Week In Review - (Not Ukraine) OT 2023-46

Last week's post on Moon of Alabama:

Bahman Kalbasi @BahmanKalbasi - 16:01 UTC · Feb 24, 2023

Awkward moment in UN Security Council just now. Ukraine FM asked members to stand for a moment of silence in memory of lives lost to Russian aggression.

Russian diplomats refused to stand saying they will only do so if it is in memory of all victims since 2014. Watch the rest.

Other issues:

Nigeria - Easy to see who the U.S. wants to win:




Use as open (not Ukraine related) thread ...

Posted by b on February 26, 2023 at 14:02 UTC | Permalink

next page »


Thank you.

Past week has shown Empire 'is' going down ... beyond doubt now that China has apparently commenced overtly, unambiguously, stepping up, IMV.

'Tis ironic Empire actually brought it all upon themselves by their own actions/choices, based on assimilated propaganda delusions, confirmation bias & outright ignorance mixed with extreme hubris.


Posted by: Outraged | Feb 26 2023 14:15 utc | 1

The article on Assange is particularly good and originated in Harpers which saves those of us who take extreme precautions when visiting Counterpunch from having to take the old disinfected bargepole out of storage.
Good to see Outraged back.

Posted by: bevin | Feb 26 2023 14:47 utc | 2

Posted by: Outraged | Feb 26 2023 14:15 utc | 1

Well, so much for the '1st post is a troll' thing.
Agreed and good to see your name again Outraged.
Tippin' one to your health.

Posted by: waynorinorway | Feb 26 2023 14:47 utc | 3

@ waynorinorway | Feb 26 2023 14:47 utc | 3

A matter of perspective, is it not, re 1st post ? Trolls would think so ? ;)

They tend to target the Ukraine Open thread mostly. Have been rather unwell last fortnight ... down for the count ... getting better ...

The return serve by RF Nebenza(?) & diplomatic crew re 'All victims' b has linked above at the UNSC was damned priceless. All the vassal plenipotentiaries standing around like stunned clubbed fish outta water, waiting, searching for the signal as to what to do, what to do?! Soulless false Janus-faced bustards. On camera.


Posted by: Outraged | Feb 26 2023 15:09 utc | 4

The TLS article is available only to subscribers and cleverer readers than this one.

I'm unsure what it says, after the first few teaser paragraphs, but it raises an interesting idea.
It is generally agreed that Wilson, a native of Atlanta I believe, was the most racist President in the C20th and perhaps, ever. He certainly believed in the Jim Crow laws and segregation.
In Europe his reputation is rather different: he is often regarded fondly as the grandfather of the United Nations. It is noted that the young FDR served in his Administration. It was even suggested, when I was at school, that had Wilson not lost the fight in Congress for the League of Nations the Second World War might never have occurred- baloney, no doubt, but part of the lost hero of Peace legend.

On the other hand Wilson seems to have been the most dogmatic of those who, at Versailles, insisted on re-building the continent on the basis of national ghettoes, separating 'races' and breaking up multinational states as the old Empires went down. This is often seen as a "good thing" but it wasn't always so and in the process hundreds of thousands lost their lives (is it a stretch to see Partition in 1948 India as Wilsonian?) while millions were expelled from their native places.

When I read of neo-con plans to break up Russia into bite sized neo-colonial chunks, I see the ghost of Woodrow Wilson behind the agitators.

Posted by: bevin | Feb 26 2023 15:13 utc | 5

@ bevin | Feb 26 2023 15:13 utc | 5

Archived TLS article for you & anyone else at WaybackMachine /

Copy/Paste the URL from the above link provided by b, in the 'Search' or 'Browse history' field, at above. Um, 24th & now 26th snapshots.

Posted by: Outraged | Feb 26 2023 15:39 utc | 6

Posted by: waynorinorway | Feb 26 2023 14:47 utc | 3
Posted by: Outraged | Feb 26 2023 15:09 utc | 4

Hey, wait a minute! By accident rather than design I appear to have acquired post #1 on the Ukraine Open thread; hope that doesn’t make me a member of the species Troglodytarum!

Although I’m still a newbie barfly, I am glad to see you are back. I particularly missed your number-crunching of the daily Defence Ministry ‘clobber list/scoreboard’. On my tab, your choice of a restorative medicinal tipple from the bar!

Posted by: West of England Andy | Feb 26 2023 15:49 utc | 7

Interesting selection!

Quite the write-up by Alastair Crooke, on the strains within the Coalition of the Dumb and Willing.
But consider this:
"Clearly the U.S. is preparing the ground for a Spring ‘Victory Announcement’ – as Milley’s delusional comments foreshadow – and a pivot – just a whisker ahead of the U.S. Presidential Election calendar kick-off."
Yes, what if the US does something like it? Just announce victory and sell it as best as possible, and then disengage from the war in Ukraine, leaving Ukraine in a status-quo, with the frontline exactly where it is today? What's Russia going to do in such a case, if Ukraine doesn't fold and lay down arms, but refrains from mounting any more attacks beyond the front? If it were to observe a quasi ceasefire, but wouldn't offer anything to Russia beyond that? If the shooting war stops, but Ukraine is still owned by the West, NATO comes and goes as it pleases, the sanctions remain in place, the theft and vilification goes on? Is Russia prepared for a situation like that? Wouldn't most of its goals and currently applied methods (denazification, demilitarisation) be voided in such a case? Wouldn't it be terminally barred from solving its Ukraine question to its advantage?

Posted by: Scotch Bingeington | Feb 26 2023 15:49 utc | 8

B. Thank you for another great week!

This article was posted yesterday on Naked Capitalism, and may have been reposted deep within some comment thread, but it deserves attention as it explains in historical terms why the Global South is not ready to jump on the anti-Russia narrative train. It appears the West’s past has finally caught up with it. So much for the “End of History”.

There is a great historical lesson here. I just hope the people with the money and the nukes can learn it.

Posted by: Michael.j | Feb 26 2023 15:57 utc | 9

@ bevin | Feb 26 2023 15:13 utc | 5

Try this:

Posted by: suzan | Feb 26 2023 16:09 utc | 10

The tweet in top post from Kalbasi -- It really was an awkward moment. Nebenzia completely took control of the situation and restored decorum. And showed who the adults in the room were. And showed who was leading.

Watch Blinken, he doesn't even know what just hit him.

Posted by: oldhippie | Feb 26 2023 16:21 utc | 11

Gabriel, Tom, and Oetams had a brief conversation about Orthodoxy on b's closure post to the 'buildup to war' series last week [194, 140, 182]. I commented that I would respond here,not having seen Tom's earliest of the three posts, (nor indeed Gabriel's answer to Tom.) I'm glad I later scrolled back to get those antecedents.

Tom was asking what any who are Orthodox 'get' from being of this persuasion. I puzzled about this last night, and this morning can perhaps give an answer of sorts.

Today is the Sunday feast in Orthodoxy named 'Forgiveness Sunday'. One might suppose that this is the day we forgive all those who trespass against us, but for me, not so. The small ceremony in the little church I had begun to attend actually took place the evening before, in darkness, with candles. I did not know very much about what would be happening; it was all very new. Simply described, it wasn't so much about me forgiving others; it was about them forgiving me.

Not only that, it began with me kneeling before my friends, asking their forgiveness, one by one, and they replying "God forgives." I had never kneeled in church experiences before this, and doing so was like becoming a child again- the way everyone loomed above me, and the aspect of the church proportions, just the way my grandmother's house looked to me as a three year old, with all of them, my kind and loving family.

Last night I wanted to say this morning that there is a wide spectrum to everyone's Orthodox faiths, but this particular feast was when I had the desire to be Orthodox - or rather I felt I had been Orthodox all along. I have been in other Christian churches; they didn't have this affect on me.

So, Tom, I am answering your question knowing you too have had other Christian experiences that seemed to you just copycat versions of other legends or tales. And I am sure you were told that this isn't the case, for various reasons. But why should it not be the case? There are moments in all our lives that are precious to us as human beings because we do have similar values from childhood on. And we take paths, different they may be, which reconcile our humanity to our early experiences, whatever they have been.

Tomorrow, Lent begins for the Orthodox. Happy Forgiveness Sunday, everyone!

Posted by: juliania | Feb 26 2023 16:25 utc | 12

When I read of neo-con plans to break up Russia into bite sized neo-colonial chunks, I see the ghost of Woodrow Wilson behind the agitators.

Posted by: bevin | Feb 26 2023 15:13 utc | 5

Indeed you do. Like Ike he is treated as benign, but in fact his 8 years did all kinds of damage, and enabled another 30 years of Jim Crow. He killed the progressive reforms of the preceding period, got us into the war, the Fed, the FBI, the national security state, it all gets a big leg up under Wilson. And WASP as can be, just like me. (Well to be fair, I am not a protestant any more.)

Sorta like Jimmy Carter.

We shoulda finished the job back in 1965, root and branch.

Posted by: Bemildred | Feb 26 2023 16:34 utc | 13

I've been reading the book "American Midnight" and have recommended it in comments here at MoA.

I also got the paywall on the review, but I'll see if the others w/ suggested links to the WayBack Machine work.

RE: The Spiegel article on the Israeli election disruptors - Gee....started off pretty interesting, but then immediately devolves into the usual RUSSIA RUSSIA RUSSIA PUTIN PUTIN PUTIN bullshit about Russian "dis/misinformation" in Germany, which is a joke considering that from everything I've been reading you can't even dare to question the official NATOstan/USA/Greens party lines about Ukraine in that country without being fined and having your career ended. So I have to ask (because the shitty article DOESN'T answer): WHAT RUSSIAN DIS/MISINFORMATION??? What a shitty article.

Posted by: Tom_Q_Collins | Feb 26 2023 16:34 utc | 14


Posted by: Bemildred | Feb 26 2023 16:35 utc | 15

Posted by: juliania | Feb 26 2023 16:25 utc | 12

In any case thanks for that reply. And no I didn't really see any responses to my question in the other thread. To this end I will post, from my own records, my own self-authored work on the ways in which Christianity was cribbed and copied from previous pagan and other more ancient religions, but not right now as I don't have the MS Word file available on my phone.

Posted by: Tom_Q_Collins | Feb 26 2023 16:36 utc | 16

Suzan, Outraged thank you for your invaluable (see subscription rates at TLS) assistance. Now I will read the article.

Posted by: bevin | Feb 26 2023 16:46 utc | 17

NATO-sponsored aggression and war crimes have been going on for more than eight years since the CIA-backed coup in Kiev in 2014.

Russell Bentley is a former U.S. soldier who has been living in the Donbass since 2014 fighting against the NATO-backed Kiev regime.

He claims that NATO troops are on the ground as mercenaries, shelling the Donbass region which is now part of the Russian Federation. He testifies that the NATO-sponsored aggression and war crimes have been going on for more than eight years since the CIA-backed coup in Kiev in 2014. NATO provoked the current war against Russia, says Bentley.

He believes Russia has the military power to win the war, but military leaders in Moscow are not pushing for victory as decisively as they should. The result, he says, is that the conflict is being prolonged which runs the risk of spiraling into a full-on NATO-Russia war.

Article contains link to 40 minute recent Youtube interview.

I believe there is something to this 'Russia is slow-walking' narrative. There are many different possible reasons for this of course, but many of Texas' criticisms over the past year claim that many in Donbass are seriously disappointed by Russian MoD decisions. Also, as he states there is far more foreign mercenary participation, including especially from NATO-nations, than generally recognized in the press. It's a small point maybe but it must give many in Donbass the feeling that the West is at war with, and killing, them whereas the RF is mainly playing a waiting or attrition game without ever attacking back and bringing the hurt to the countries harming them. It must be difficult and to me it is always outrageous that Western pro-NATO pundits insist on entirely ignoring the rights - including right to life - of those in these conflict-ridden oblasts.

Well, war is a messy business so...

Posted by: Scorpion | Feb 26 2023 17:02 utc | 18

Posted by: Tom_Q_Collins | Feb 26 2023 16:36 utc | 16

Thanks, Tom, for your speedy reply! Have you read The Master and Margarita by Mikhail Bulgakov? This is from the first chapter:

...The conversation, as was learned afterwards, was about Jesus Christ. The thing was that the editor had commissioned from the poet a long anti-religious poem for the next issue of his journal. Ivan Nikolaevich had written this poem, and in a very short time, but unfortunately the editor was not at all satisfied with it. Homeless [Ivan] had portrayed the main character of his poem -- that is, Jesus -- in very dark colours, but nevertheless the whole poem, in the editor's opinion, had to be written over again. And so the editor was now giving the poet something of a lecture on Jesus, with the aim of underscoring the poet's essential error...

Sorry; I love that book. I just couldn't resist, because I think maybe the Russians are ahead of you, in that chapter at least.


Posted by: juliania | Feb 26 2023 17:11 utc | 19

Sorry, should have edited that to indent the quotation between the ... [I actually did put it in blockquotes, so not entirely my fault!]

Posted by: juliania | Feb 26 2023 17:15 utc | 20

The vote for the future regulation ( )which will give the right to the WHO to decide where and when a pandemy is occuring and thus getting prevailing powers over the local country or the world is tomorrow.

Posted by: WilliamT | Feb 26 2023 17:50 utc | 21

Looking back at the days running up to the Russian intervention in 2022 inevitably entails looking back to 2013-2014, and previous history.

It is, therefore, quite illuminating to go back to Oliver Stone's interviews with Putin conducted from July 2015 to February 2017. There is a four-part documentary, but also a book with the full transcripts which includes some material not in the film.

Those who have not watched or read these interviews will be surprised at how much there is to hear and learn about all the subjects discussed here currently, and, of course, about Putin as a person and a great statesman, in my view at least.

The book: The Putin Interviews, with a foreword by Robert Sheer. Published in 2017 by Hot Books (Skyshore Publishin Inc).

Posted by: JB | Feb 26 2023 17:53 utc | 22

There is more than hysterical anti-Chinese propaganda in the Western media. Chinese guy I know in States said his nephew in Canada is waiting for an extended background check to come through to see if he will get a job offer. The nephew was born in Canada, does not speak any Chinese, never been to China, and graduated at the top of his class. Carl Zha of Twitter fame believes that ethnic Chinese people will be rounded like the Japanese during WWII if any sort of war breaks out.

Posted by: Erelis | Feb 26 2023 17:54 utc | 23

Tom was asking what any who are Orthodox 'get' from being of this persuasion.
Posted by: juliania | Feb 26 2023 16:25 utc | 12

How very egoistic. To think about what you can get and not about what you can give.

Posted by: Vikichka | Feb 26 2023 17:56 utc | 24

Chinese guy.. born in Canada.. does not speak any Chinese.. never been to China

Posted by: Erelis | Feb 26 2023 17:54 utc | 23

So he is not Chinese.

Posted by: Vikichka | Feb 26 2023 18:00 utc | 25

On topic in a wider sense is also Oliver Stone's documentary, that is, interview with Fidel Castro.
I warmly recommend it to everyone. Meet Castro and you will never forget him.

The documentary: Comandante, 2003, (99 minutes). There is a bad copy on youtube.

Posted by: JB | Feb 26 2023 18:13 utc | 26

thanks b!

@ outraged... nice to see you back! thanks everyone...

Posted by: james | Feb 26 2023 18:20 utc | 27

@ Vikichka | Feb 26 2023 18:00 utc | 25

i think you miss the point vikichka... the kind of anti chinese energy that is being pushed in the western media results in crap like what @ Erelis | Feb 26 2023 17:54 utc | 23 articulates...

Posted by: james | Feb 26 2023 18:22 utc | 28

Thanks, b, for your intense brilliance this week, and for including the Alistair Crook article - the point he makes about Hersh's interview and the focus on Biden's team is worth emphasis, as a fissure there could help us see some daylight, but indeed we have seen abject diversions of both R & D in the past with impeachments arranged about nothing at all (oops, I'm sounding like Seinfeld now).

Oh dear, when will all become sayable once again? - it used to be so!

Posted by: juliania | Feb 26 2023 18:26 utc | 29

i think you miss the point vikichka...
Posted by: james | Feb 26 2023 18:22 utc | 28

I dont get it. So you are a Canadian citizen, born in Canada, speak no Chinese, never been in China, apply for a job in the US, but they do expanded background checks based on suspicion for a Chinese connection? Did the name sound chinese?

Posted by: Vikichka | Feb 26 2023 19:03 utc | 30

Sorry about this, fellow barflies, but folks seem to care what WSJ says about what the Energy Department says...

Lab Leak Most Likely Origin of Covid-19 Pandemic, Energy Department Now Says
U.S. agency’s revised assessment is based on new intelligence

Posted by: Aleph_Null | Feb 26 2023 19:07 utc | 31

Posted by: Aleph_Null | Feb 26 2023 19:07 utc | 31

So what does Transportation Secretary Buttgig think about it?

Have they checked with the Pentagon?

Posted by: Vikichka | Feb 26 2023 19:03 utc | 30

Germans & Japanese (among others, e.g. muslims) have been given the same treatment here. The propaganda need for a cartoonish enemy to justify our theatrical wars overrides reality all the time.

Posted by: Bemildred | Feb 26 2023 19:22 utc | 32

Most of it is behind a paywall - the public part of it states just as much as that the virus appears to have escaped from the Wuhan laboratory complex, with no reference to either Dr. Fauci (who presumeably financed the research) or Jeffrey Sachs, who shed some light on the projects that were underway, in his investigation for the Lancet Journal. The best source to me is Max Blumenthal's interview with Jeffrey Sachs
where he also explains the role of the "proteolytic cleavage site" which apparently has been added to the former virus genome, resulting in the Sars-Cov 2 that we all know.
Another excellent interview, which has a lot of extra information, is here:

Posted by: grunzt | Feb 26 2023 19:31 utc | 33

@Aleph_Null | Feb 26 2023 19:07 utc | 31

Sure, no motive there. The fake pandemic rises again and everybody believes the lies once again, so that the war on China can become real.

Posted by: Norwegian | Feb 26 2023 19:34 utc | 34

@ grunzt | Feb 26 2023 19:31 utc | 33

From what I've seen, it's darned difficult to build on what Nicholas Wade wrote (published by the Bulletin of Atomic Scientists) -- "cleavage site" and all. This is why I find it boring. We're expected to regard the same story as more or less true, depending on the respectability of the source. We can surely trust WSJ and the Energy Department (not to mention Secretary Buttplug) because they've never disseminated disinformation, you know. Not in living memory!

Posted by: Aleph_Null | Feb 26 2023 19:49 utc | 35

I just read Glenn Greenwald's latest on Brazil. Lula Fake News Law

It seems like Lula is embracing censorship and trying to pass legislation against fake news and disinformation. I guess some apparatchik at the PT's headquarters will get to decide what is fake news if the law passes. I am no fan of Bolsonaro, but I think Lula is going to be a disaster for Brazil.

Posted by: lex talionis | Feb 26 2023 19:54 utc | 36

i cannot express how inspiring the twitter video from Bahman Kalbasi was. warmed the cockles, heartily. "greater love hath no man than this, than to lay down his life for his familiars." it's a miracle that there's any darkness in the world at all, since all the leaders stand for peace, brotherhood, mom, blood, soil, heroic self-sacrifice (performed by others, natch), and their own moral superiority.

i don't know why Anthony Blinken looks confused, since he's so used to, uh, "voting with his feet", as it were. but he sees a stampede and he just goes with it.

kudos to the diplos from the RAF. that was awesome.

Posted by: rjb1.5 | Feb 26 2023 20:02 utc | 37

Posted by: rjb1.5 | Feb 26 2023 20:02 utc | 37
though it is important that when the camera is on the US delegation, there is no doubt at all the US stands for "diversity." there's that black dude from the UK, there's that Indian looking chick, another black dude, and some lady from a loser token white country, Albania.

see, diversity! no Palestinians need apply.

Posted by: rjb1.5 | Feb 26 2023 20:15 utc | 38

Aleph_Null | Feb 26 2023 19:49 utc | 35

If it bored you because the matter is so difficult (cleavage site and all) you should give Jeffrey Sachs a chance. He is not a virologist, but an economist who worked his way up to some basic understanding of virology. And he is an excellent communicator and narrator - fully satisfying to that other non-virologist that I am.

Posted by: grunzt | Feb 26 2023 20:21 utc | 39

For you Norwegian

Jonathan Weisman: In some sense both sides are right...
In some sense, both sides are right, both sides are wrong,
and, in the bifurcated politics
of urban genderqueers and rural hicks,
of fetal stem cell bans and legal bongs,
of floury tiktok wives and boys in thongs,
in this American moment: nothing sticks;
the self-destruct device’s timer ticks
toward zero hour, and the nearing thundering song
of risen oceans lapping Appalachian
foothills murmur in our dreams, and wake, and speak:
human failing or God’s grim judgment day?
Reason, duty, kindness? Fickle fashion.
Fairness compels: in equal measure seek
to talk too much with nothing at all to say.
Jacob Bacharach long ago used to blog at "whoisioz". quitter. he went on to write books and junk like that, occasional poetry and such.

Posted by: rjb1.5 | Feb 26 2023 20:25 utc | 40

while i'm, uh, plugging Jacob Bacharach:
America Runs on a Sick Workforce.

From the perspective of the ruling class that people like Norwegian speak for and represent, the coronavirus and any other global pandemic could only possibly be one of two things:

1) nothing to worry about, it's "the flu" or whatever.
2) a bioweapon, i.e., something to go to war over.

it's not even possible that it could be simply what it is. something that has occurred innumerable times in history.

Posted by: rjb1.5 | Feb 26 2023 20:37 utc | 41

why don't masks work?

because masks interrupt the operation of the facial recognition software at my ATM.

so, no, masks don't work.

neither does isolating oneself from the diseases of the herd.

Posted by: rjb1.5 | Feb 26 2023 20:40 utc | 42

what else is inimical to health?


sick people don't need to rest do they?

no more than a sick planet.

all that stuff we were told about sleep being good for us,

all bullshit. keep up the home improvement, America!

anyway, here's some Abraham Joshua Heschel's "The Sabbath"
As discussed by these guys:
Prof. #oriZSoltes, Georgetown University, USA
Dr. Muhammad Maroof Shah, Srinagar, Kashmir
Professor John Robert Clammer, O.P. Jindal Global University, India
Moderator: Ananta Kumar Giri, Madras Institute of Development Studies, Chennai and Vishwaneedam Center for Asian Blossoming
Convener: Randhir Kumar Gautam, Vishwaneedam Center for Asian Blossoming

Posted by: rjb1.5 | Feb 26 2023 20:51 utc | 43

@rjb1.5 | Feb 26 2023 20:37 utc | 41

From the perspective of the ruling class that people like Norwegian speak for and represent,
It seems there is a tendency of people claiming to be mind readers around here. That is stupid, because only I know the truth of what goes on in my mind and I can thus call them out as the liars they are when it happens.

In reality, you get angry reactions like this when you get too close to the truth. The reaction is typical for cognitive dissonance. When someone receives information contrary to one's heavily invested world view, a common reaction is to reject the information instead of adjusting the world view. And of course, personal attacks comes with it.

Posted by: Norwegian | Feb 26 2023 21:00 utc | 44

Streeck's piece is the standout for me. His discussion of German politics is concise but nails it, especially the absolute criminal hypocrisy of the so-called Greens ('Greenbacks' more like) and the ongoing failure of the Left in Germany but also everywhere since 911. What this failure shows (to me at least) is that Western Marxism, after the debacle of '68 particularly, but accelerating fast after 1989, had definitely broken with the interests and cause of the working class. Lennon's 'Revolution' is the anthem of that break. These days the political left is a rump, mostly Gen X offspring of middle class fake revolutionaries. Meanwhile the Right, as always, intuitively understands the social conservatism of the working class and dog whistles to it.

As a result, the Left are hopelessly mired in contradictions, spouting one thing but living their lives by another. One cannot do this indefinitely and so when the Left hit their 50s and 60s they fade into the discrete comfort of bourgeois retirement.

One will look back and see some crucial milestones for the cascading failure of the Western Left: Mussolini, Franco, Hitler, FDR's New Deal (which married Big Labor to Industry), loss of faith in the USSR at various points (1939 pact, revelation of Stalin's crimes, '56, etc), their 'emperor has no clothes' moment (May '68—the student year ended in May and by June they'd all gone on holiday. Students have staged revolutions in the playground ever since), end of the Cold War, 911 (all moral high ground captured by neocon agenda), COVID, now the Ukr-RF war. Gramsci explains the reasons for all this.

As such the Left now is simply whiney, offering critique without change, inverting Thesis 11. The 'moment of the left' 1871-1939 (if you like) has gone and won't return. All that remains are the inexorable forces of history itself.

Posted by: Patroklos | Feb 26 2023 21:16 utc | 45

The week in review succinctly summarized:
War continues and the peasants wonder why - at least the ones still thinking...
the other ones just go about their business unaware of all the ticking time bombs..
planted in the 20th century.
Many, getting older love to talk about all the nuance, but not much has changed really and some wonder...
is this our fate?
I think that basically captures it succinctly.

Posted by: Buffalo_Ken | Feb 26 2023 21:25 utc | 46

In Sydney the collective derangement about this war, and everything really, made me re-read Darkness at Noon by Arthur Koestler. I thought of following up with The Trial but Kafka is too awful and desolate. I'm waiting for the day when I am called to account for my 'wrong' views and will face my Crucible moment. Will I have the courage to keep faith with a rational, Enlightenment, open, truly liberal position? Or will I recant and apologise for my insanity and plead for my life back? It's sad times we live in my friends.

Posted by: Patroklos | Feb 26 2023 21:28 utc | 47

Posted by: Patroklos | Feb 26 2023 21:28 utc | 47
If you got nothing to apologize then don't say you are sorry.
If you got something to apologize for, then get it out before you are dead and gone.
So, don't over think it would be my council.

Posted by: Buffalo_Ken | Feb 26 2023 21:31 utc | 48

Posted by: juliania | Feb 26 2023 17:11 utc | 19

A couple of things and perhaps a correction of a misunderstanding. I actually did start The Master and Margarita a number of years ago and I bet if I tried I could find it somewhere around here. Thanks for the suggestion.

Since earlier today I was communicating from my "smart" phone, on the go, I wasn't really reading your post carefully. In my question in the other thread, I never referenced "orthodox" religion or even "orthodoxy." I asked about "organized" religion, which of course includes the orthodox beliefs or at least shares an overlapping portion of a Ven diagram with them. My problem is with "evangelicals" and anyone looking to push Christ - or "The Christ" and what he/it is supposed to represent onto anyone else. This is because I was raised hard-core Pentecostal with a strange evangelical twist (which isn't normal to most among that sect, I think - Usually they keep to themselves). Without getting too far back into my own experiences or dwelling too much on how "The Christ" is a fictitious character insofar as how he/it is portrayed in the Christian Bible, based on an amalgamation of multiple pagan and even more ancient "Gods" and the like. Same thing goes for the timing and nature of various Christian religious "events" and "holidays." Blah blah blah...suffice it to say that I did the research (over several years) and came to my senses, left (and was excommunicated from) the church and have never looked back.

So to my main questions from the other thread re: organized religion (I didn't specify down to Christianity either, unless I'm not recalling correctly, so Judaism, Islam, Hinduism, etc. are fair game) - I had asked what adherents among those who comment here might get from it. Do they actually get meaningful spiritual awakening/guidance/other benefits or if they are honest with themselves is "the church" (or "the mosque" or "the synagogue" etc.) more like a community networking place where one can go to feel part of a community and develop bonds with neighbors that may help with a different type of spirituality. I can fully see the latter parts being true - I know many Christians who are honest about it. They don't believe in the fairy tales in the scriptures, but they couldn't get by without the sense of belonging to a group, even if they have to tithe (some of them quite a bit) and even if some churches (ahem...cough....The Catholic Church) are scandal ridden carryovers from the Roman patriarchy....

SO that was the gist of my question. Just a short informal poll among regular readers here. Personally I get my spirituality needs met through music, the outdoors and hard, vigorous exercise (perhaps it's just the endorphins there, LOL).

Posted by: Tom_Q_Collins | Feb 26 2023 21:33 utc | 49

@ Vikichka | Feb 26 2023 19:03 utc | 30

sorry to not reply sooner.. i was out!

see @ Erelis | Feb 26 2023 17:54 utc | 23 post again.. let me quote the part you need to keep in mind - "Chinese guy I know in States said his nephew in Canada is waiting for an extended background check to come through to see if he will get a job offer."

when they do the background check,what do you think it involves?? pictures and name of the person?? if so - they can discrimate purely on this.... if you have never been to vancouver or toronto - there are a zillion people of chinese ancestry... they can be 4th and 5th generation who have not spoken a word of chinese and have been fully integrated into the canadian culture... it won't matter to immigration type people, or those making decisions that reflect the hostility or animosity of the usa or canadian govt towards chinese.. that is a sad fact of what indeed did happen during world war 2 with the rounding up of people with japanese ancestry.. it didn't matter... hopefully now you understand! cheers james

Posted by: james | Feb 26 2023 21:33 utc | 50

@ juliania | Feb 26 2023 16:25 utc | 12 quote

"Tomorrow, Lent begins for the Orthodox. Happy Forgiveness Sunday, everyone!"

thanks! to you as well... christian lent started last wednesday.. they are not completely synced up! different calendar i guess...

@ Tom_Q_Collins | Feb 26 2023 21:33 utc | 49

i do not practice a formal religion... but my guess is that you are correct to think they get some sense of community from it all.. i know people who are part of organized religious groups and churches... that is my sense of one of the things they get from it... they probably get more too in regards the time they might spend reflecting on life in a different way, or being encouraged to do so via the sermons and etc... of course love, friendship, forgiveness and understanding are dear to most everyone's heart! i suppose we are all looking for that - in all the right or wrong places, lol...

Posted by: james | Feb 26 2023 21:40 utc | 51

new pot from glen greenwald.. not sure if the link will work, but if not maybe the title is searchable for anyone interested..
New Law Sought by Brazil's Lula to Ban and Punish "Fake News and Disinformation" Threatens the Free Internet Everywhere

Posted by: james | Feb 26 2023 21:50 utc | 52

in all the right or wrong places, lol...

Posted by: james | Feb 26 2023 21:40 utc | 51

Ha ha, true! But who's to say what's right and wrong on matters like psychedelics and other mind altering substances? I mention this because I neglected to in my longer comment, but I have been known to set aside a nice spring Saturday afternoon or a night when my wife/family are out of town to imbibe in psilocybin. I find it to be VERY spiritually awakening. It also destroys (in a good way) one's ego if the "trip" is managed properly. But according to some of the more puritanical and orthodox religions this makes me a grave sinner with a fate including being cast into a pit of eternal fire. Same thing for weed, or any other drug really, but then the Catholics have been known to look the other way with alcohol. Since I'm kinda rambling now, that brings to mind a couple of jokes I've heard over the years from Catholic and Mormon friends.

- Wherever you find four Catholic priests, you'll always find a fifth.

- Why do you have two bring two Mormons on your fishing trip? Because if you only bring one, he'll drink all your beer.

Yuk yuk...

Posted by: Tom_Q_Collins | Feb 26 2023 21:53 utc | 53

@ Patroklos | Feb 26 2023 21:16 utc | 45

which link is "Streeck's piece"? thanks..

Posted by: james | Feb 26 2023 21:53 utc | 54

@ Tom_Q_Collins | Feb 26 2023 21:53 utc | 53

life is complicated.. there is good and bad in all areas of life and ideology... embrace the good and ignore the shadows, lol... regarding belief systems - it is hard to change others views on things.. probably impossible! by setting a positive example - i think that is a step in the right direction... i don't know the answer to the divisions among people.. religion is supposed to bring people together, but it is a fine line my friend and as we know from the time of the crusades - it can be the exact opposite!

Posted by: james | Feb 26 2023 21:57 utc | 55

@ grunzt | Feb 26 2023 19:31 utc | 33

Thank you, very much. As it was posted 4 months ago, I suppose it is old news. I had previously read the rumors, but it is critical to get the exact news of the origins of Covid-19. Jeffrey Sachs is a great source. Thank God for The Greyzone reporting.

This is something we should all know about, in order get our global house in order.

Posted by: Michael.j | Feb 26 2023 22:00 utc | 56

Posted by: james | Feb 26 2023 21:53 utc | 54

bevin actually linked to Streeck's piece the other day in a Ukraine related thread and I read it then. b posted it today in the Week in Review here (above, last entry under the Germany category):

Posted by: Tom_Q_Collins | Feb 26 2023 22:03 utc | 57

@ Tom_Q_Collins | Feb 26 2023 22:03 utc | 57

thanks! i missed that at the bottom.. need new glasses, lol...

Posted by: james | Feb 26 2023 22:13 utc | 58

Patroklos | Feb 26 2023 21:16 utc | 45

"their 'emperor has no clothes' moment (May '68—the student year ended in May and by June they'd all gone on holiday."

Paris; I was there in May AND June from the second day of the riots. Beaten up the same afternoon I arrived, by the CRS..... and I wasn't even aware there were going to be riots when I left the UK to study for one month (ended up as two months as I couldn't leave, no exits. lived on tomato salad as there was very little else), De Gaulle out faced the rioters and there were tanks outside Paris. I saw them from the train when leaving for Switzerland.

However, I think that what really happened is that the joint student/workers were sold down the drain by people such as Cohn-Bendt. (Who then went on to a "valuable" career in the EU).

The "takover of the leadership role" is a recognised tactic by some as we have seen in many countries since.

Posted by: Stonebird | Feb 26 2023 22:16 utc | 59

Nemesis Calling:

I'm finally getting around to answering your question about FDR and the USSR/Stalin. I had been reading a book called "The Nazi Hydra in America" and wanted to mostly finish it before committing myself to an answer.

But before I do, could you please remind me of the question? I don't want to launch into a long screed that ends up not even being on topic. I think I remember it relating to special treatment being given to Stalin and the Soviets and unfair, totally over the top punishments doled out to Germany and the Nazis, but again I don't remember exactly. Sorry for not copying and pasting it since I've mentioned it so many times since, including now.

Posted by: Tom_Q_Collins | Feb 26 2023 22:27 utc | 60

Posted by: grunzt | Feb 26 2023 19:31 utc | 33

By what mechanism or practice is it alleged that the cleavage site was "added"? I can't watch any videos at the moment, but I'm interested to know whether they get into specifics (like gain of function by passing an infection from animal to animal - or - if they're alleging more advanced and direct methods were used) and if so, what level of detail they drill down to.

Posted by: Tom_Q_Collins | Feb 26 2023 22:36 utc | 61

The people of the Donbas are lucky: they know exactly what fate is in store for them if they end up on the losing side and NATO's puppets come to rule them. Ramzy Baroud on the fate of Palestine, which is a pretty good approximation of what the US and Britain, Canada and the rest of NATO condone and patronise.

patroklos@45 The reaction against capitalism that occurred in the C19th and C20th came from generations of workers who had inherited or themselves recalled an idea of what the world should look like. Without idealising pre-capitalist communities, which were largely rural and agricultural with a surprising measure of hunting/poaching and gathering mixed in, they taught people to believe that, in this vale of tears, each should be charitable to his neighbours.
However this worked out in practice it made for a frame of mind in which the cannibalistic exploitation found in a society in which 'callous cash nexus' was the basic connection between men horrified them.
Brought face to face with the liberalism of Malthus or Mill, Nassau Senior or Bentham men could not believe that they were not dealing with the Devil of whom they had been told so much in church and chapel.
The great advantage these early generations of workers had was that they were unindoctrinated, if they could read it was because they had learned to, often at great cost, themselves. They were beyond the range of the middle class' media, and, it was one of the features of the lives they lived in the cities and industrial towns that they quickly distanced themselves from the churches their bosses favoured.
The people who made the Russian revolution in the cities often still retained holdings in their native villages, refuges in case of strike or unemployment but also guarantees that they remained part of the same mass as the full time peasants. In China the revolution was largely the work of peasant masses, the rural working class.
My point is that those who lament the lack of political self activity in the modern working class, the casual acceptance of the corruption of the Unions, the childish loyalty of working people to parties headed by Scholtz, Albanese, Blair, Hollande and, dredging the lifeforms discovered in the most foetid sludge down where the sewage is pumped into the ocean, Keir Starmer, ought to explore the idea that what made the earliest generations of workers so militant and determined was not poverty or bad living conditions so much as a morality derived from generations of living and sharing power in rural communities, governed by custom which had grown up, and reflected class struggles over centuries.

Posted by: bevin | Feb 26 2023 22:58 utc | 62

Hadn't ever thought much about this. Covert Action Magazine asks: Was Hunter S. Thompson "suicided"?

Posted by: Tom_Q_Collins | Feb 26 2023 23:10 utc | 63

Below is the title of a ZH posting showing that comics are where the public now gets the truth from in the US

Leftists Furious As Woody Harrelson Sneaks Covid Vaccine Mandate Joke Onto SNL

Posted by: psychohistorian | Feb 26 2023 23:24 utc | 64

Fruit Shortages in the UK according to the BBC.

Exposed - the root cause.

Methinks Aunty is toying with the banana again ;)

Posted by: uncle tungsten | Feb 26 2023 23:26 utc | 65

Tom_Q_Collins | Feb 26 2023 22:36 utc | 61

The cleavage site consists of a sequence of four amino acids - mostly of the basic type, like arginine - which will serve as a target for some other protein (called furine) which will act as a scissors and cut the substrate protein in two.
I don't know how they found out, but it had long been clear that the insertion of a cleavage site leads to "gain of function" in that it makes the virus more infectuous. Using the FOIA Act, Sachs gained access to a document outlining an intended project of Dr. Fauci's NIAID Institute - where 180 samples of new, undescript viruses had been discovered and were to be checked for preexisting furine cleavage sites. If not found, a cleavage site would be added to the spike protein - simply by inserting 12 more nucleobases to the genome. -

But keep in mind that Sachs, as an economist, was no match for the scientists in the investigation panel that he chaired - they could play him for a fool, until...

Well, this is the part that makes the interview worth listening to, and I shouldn't spoil it at this point.

Posted by: grunzt | Feb 26 2023 23:27 utc | 66

ZH has a posting up with the title

COVID "Likely Arose" From Lab Leak, US Energy Department Admits In Classified Report

The quote

The complex narrative that governments, non-governmental organizations, Big Tech, and mainstream media built around Covid with shaky assumptions and misdirections is falling apart -- hence the latest pivot by the Energy Department.

Posted by: psychohistorian | Feb 26 2023 23:40 utc | 67

Cleavage sites sound like something to troll adolescent boys with...

Are they available on OnlyFans, does anyone know?..

... asking for a friend...

Posted by: West of England Andy | Feb 26 2023 23:42 utc | 68

Posted by: grunzt | Feb 26 2023 23:27 utc | 66

OK, I was under the impression that gain of function was merely a type of research whereby viruses (and bacteria?) are passed from host to host so that the pathogen "gains functions" it didn't have before. This is the basis of my query about what exactly they are asserting happened (if they are drilling down that far). The reason is that if they're saying traditional gain of function likely led to the cleavage site, I can believe that. But if they're saying or implying that there was direct genetic engineering going on - direct manipulation of viruses or their components, I don't think I'm willing to accept that as the technology doesn't exist to make such precise intended changes.

I'll listen to the vid later.

Posted by: Tom_Q_Collins | Feb 27 2023 0:11 utc | 69

"Icarus defies hubris: Are Biden’s ‘Wings’ melting?" poses excellent questions related to the very unexpected--by some--outcome one year after the economic attack on Russia and a year into the liberation of Great Russian lands and their people. The introductory paragraph implies a great deal:

"24 February marks the first anniversary of the war in Ukraine. Rarely does a single geo-political event so completely overturn expectations; rarely, does one geo-political event re-orientate the world map. A look at a geo-political representation of the world today would shock at how small London, Paris and Washington are shown, and how the world axis has shifted eastwards, with Eurasia the new global ‘eye’ at its centre."

Do click the link and go from there and be prepared to think when you're finished.

Posted by: karlof1 | Feb 27 2023 0:30 utc | 70

Posted by: Tom_Q_Collins | Feb 26 2023 21:33 utc | 49

I greatly do apologize, Tom, for my misread of your question-- I came to it backwards after what I'd felt was an interesting discussion of Orthodoxy that I wanted to enlarge upon. So, researching backwards a bit late on the other thread, I did make that mistake.

I've had the feeling that when Prince Vladimir had his nation baptized "in a princely fashion" as our priest said when we celebrated that millenium, the trappings of empire that came at the great Hagia Sophia ceremonies were truly awesome to his ministers. They have a rightful place in Russia historically speaking. Here in the US, empire doesn't really fit, to my mind, but the music and the icons are truly beautiful. I don't feel the loss of that great cathedral, myself more comfortable in what we had.

Our small family church could not and did not have empirical trappings -- but it was beautiful nonetheless in the ways I've expressed here, and we were, I am, still, traditionally Orthodox in belief, as Gabriel has described. So no, not a 'fairy tale' to the Orthodox. All of Orthodoxy is the same in that they follow Christ with sincerity. It's heartfelt, as it is in Russia, and in Ukraine too.

Thanks so much for responding.

Posted by: juliania | Feb 27 2023 0:38 utc | 71

oldhippie #11

"Watch Blinken, he doesn't even know what just hit him."

Blinken and his Uke tools are too smart by half, but only a fraction of Russia smart. Nebenzia held them all for a long one minute of disgrace.

Posted by: uncle tungsten | Feb 27 2023 0:38 utc | 72

A creative, intelligent and somewhat unhinged take on what civil war in the former USA will look like, including the two adversarial sides.

An interesting aside therein is his speculation that before the one-world government business can be established (of course it will be called 'new multipolarity' or some such), first America has to be brought to point of collapse. That sounds about right to me given everything ongoing is turning the West into a dysfunctional debacle steadily worsening day by day...

Posted by: Scorpion | Feb 27 2023 0:38 utc | 73

@39 grunzt | Feb 26 2023 20:21 utc

give Jeffrey Sachs a chance. He is not a virologist, but an economist who worked his way up to some basic understanding of virology.

Thanks for this and your other posts here. This particular point struck a chord with something I was reading just today, the final conclusion of the book Turtles All The Way Down - Vaccine Science and Myth.


The authors speak of three levels of discussion/challenge with regard to vaccines. At the first level (the shallowest), parents relate the stories of their children and the harm they suffered immediately following some vaccination, and this gets plenty of people angry, and makes sense across the board as an outrage, a visible harm that needs explaining.

Level Two of the discussion occurs as vaccine proponents (usually medical and academic professionals) enter the discussion, using scientific and medical language to refute the charges originally made in ordinary, commonplace language. Usually this cohort wins the day, because ordinary people don't have the language or familiarity to counter scientific papers, trials and the like, and more importantly don't have the time or ability to dive into the disciplines to examine the arguments of the more professional, Level Two discussants.

But there is a Level Three that develops over time - and which has now developed extensively - which consists of ordinary people and concerned parents who have persisted to examine and understand the points made in rebuttal to their original fears of vaccine procedures. These are non-professionals who nonetheless have learned enough to be able to contradict the professional arguments from Level Two.


And what happens is that Level Three argumentation sweeps the board. The Level Two arguments that sounded so authoritative left a picture of hysterical and uninformed parents being placated by the professionals in white coats who assured us all that there was nothing to worry about, and that the Level One challenge was simply ignorant conspiracy theory.

This picture no longer obtains. Many ordinary people have dived deep into medical science (and in the last 3 years I suspect that plenty of us have done this to a degree that we never desired or dreamed of doing).

So, the authors say that Level Three started to appear in the US about 15 years ago. Up until that point, the establishment was content to have the white coats win the arguments and leave that picture of authority in their place. But as ordinary people began to school themselves, and as the Level Two arguments were effectively countered, a change in the terms of discussion became necessary.

And what happened then was a complete refusal to discuss, a culture of professional refusology as the book coins it. And furthermore, a complete silencing of all discussion and challenge by dissenters from the establishment/industry narrative.


The book is useful because it deals with a time span of the last 60 years, and longer. I don't think it even once mentions the word Covid - it's not about THAT vaccine at all. It's about vaccines in general, and how the industry works, and how government is tied to the narrative, and the media compliant with the narrative.

Many of us have been shocked by what we've witnessed in the past three years. Turtles gives us the context in which all of these shocking events have occurred. There's really nothing new in what we experienced since 2020. It's standard playbook and business as usual.

But it takes a whole book to explain all that, and this is the book. It truly is, in my view, the masterpiece that it has been called. I recommend it unreservedly, and I hope I can say more about it later on.

Posted by: Grieved | Feb 27 2023 0:45 utc | 74

Posted by: Norwegian | Feb 26 2023 21:00 utc | 44
additionally, the environmental wreckage of capitalism is also not real.

you know what is real?


like i said, spokesperson for the ruling class and its values. not even possible that something could interrupt your little games.

Posted by: rjb1.5 | Feb 27 2023 0:47 utc | 75

Posted by: rjb1.5 | Feb 27 2023 0:47 utc | 75

you know what is real?


No doubt "WAR" is real....but what kind of war are you speaking to - 5th G war or 20th century war and did you know, war evolves and 5th G war is going out of favor.
Get a clue you old angry fart.

Posted by: Buffalo_Ken | Feb 27 2023 0:51 utc | 76

Posted by: Scorpion | Feb 27 2023 0:38 utc | 73
I don't think this can be predicted and I refute those trying to do it...too much uncertainty in the air, and why contemplate harmful civil strife I wonder.

Posted by: Buffalo_Ken | Feb 27 2023 0:52 utc | 77

Do click the link and go from there and be prepared to think when you're finished.

Posted by: karlof1 | Feb 27 2023 0:30 utc | 70

Thank you for that article. I would just start ranting so I will leave it at that.

Posted by: Bemildred | Feb 27 2023 0:52 utc | 78

An American Civil War? To use the site owner’s language: Dass ich nicht lache! It would be the Dimbots versus the Trumpoid Qbots, and granted, the latter could win. They do, after all, have all the police forces and the overwhelming majority of privately held firearms.

But what would be the end result? Lots of dead “niggers” and “spics” and “faggots” and maybe even some “kikes”snd “eggheads”—but the Deep State folks, who pull the Trumpoid/Qbot strings just as they control the libbies—would still be sitting pretty.

Posted by: malenkov | Feb 27 2023 0:56 utc | 79

Posted by: malenkov | Feb 27 2023 0:56 utc | 79
Last I heard the American Civil War already happened, so that is old history.
Seriously - is there not something more worthwhile to contemplate - why project out harmful thoughts and ideas....
and if you think I'm a pussy, I will prove you wrong.

Posted by: Buffalo_Ken | Feb 27 2023 0:59 utc | 80

Buffalo_Ken: I was surprised by your ESHA/OSHA comments; they demonstrated that your presence here isn’t entirely worthless.

Posted by: malenkov | Feb 27 2023 1:05 utc | 81

Posted by: malenkov | Feb 27 2023 1:05 utc | 81
Thanks - neither is yours I reckon.

Posted by: Buffalo_Ken | Feb 27 2023 1:09 utc | 82

Posted by: Tom_Q_Collins | Feb 26 2023 21:33 utc | 49
I don't get anything out of organized religion.

except some of the books i read. a good bit of the music, which in the west ultimately comes from the church, to an extraordinary degree. etc.

the question in a broader and perhaps universal perspective is: why does the City require the Temple? because there's lots wrong w/the City? official, public life requires something to scrub it, cleanse it, beautify it, etc.? and of course, the Teaching, because people don't learn to act at all like decent human beings from their life "in the marketplace."

so what's the problem? well, for one, the priests themselves both keep and do not "keep the law." i.e., they write down the scrolls, keep the libraries, scrub the idols, etc., but that does not make them heedful. It just means that they are scribes, at best. there's magic in those mysteries, and a big moneychanging operation going on.

Acts 23:8: The Sadducees says that there is no 'resurrection', no 'angel,' no 'spirit,' but the Pharisees affirm 'both'. (sic).

as you probably know, the Sadducees are the ruling class, whereas the other lot are more like a fundamentalist rebellion (or "reformation") of the utterly sold-out-to-Rome clergy.

there is no uprising, no messenger, no breath.
no rebellion, no jedi, no schwarz, i mean chi, i mean force.

depending on who (and when) we are talking about, the problem is not so much that a priest is "wrong" but where's the rebellion?

one example, from the filthy millenia long constipated bowels of christendom: the "filioque" clause. by the traditional ("orthodox") understanding of the church, there can be no conflict within the Trinity.

so why is the filioque clause added? precisely because it creates conflict. and such bullshit ensnares the conscience of the simple. a specialty of the RCC.

Posted by: rjb1.5 | Feb 27 2023 1:11 utc | 83

Posted by: Scorpion | Feb 27 2023 0:38 utc | 73

RE civil war.

It is interesting to speculate, but I think the USA today is far from its roots and very unpredicable how it would go.

I would say we have not yet had our popular revolution here, and that is what is coming. We still have our old colonial elites, plus a bunch of new foreign immigrants from our hegemonic possessions. Certainly a lot of it is likely to be reactionary, and another component on the unhinged left.

But I always have trouble with theories that hinge on the competence and machinelike functioning of the government bureaucracy and deep state operators. ("Never underestimate Biden's ability to f**k things up." -- B. Obama) I expect things to stop working, how far that will go remains to be seen.

Posted by: Bemildred | Feb 27 2023 1:16 utc | 84

Posted by: rjb1.5 | Feb 27 2023 1:11 utc | 83
i sometimes get inspired to check out the words, from the music and language i don't understand.

the evolution of the text of this song from Venantius Fortunatus (6th c) to the authorized papal bull from Thomas Aquinas is quite something.

Posted by: rjb1.5 | Feb 27 2023 1:18 utc | 85

Posted by: bevin | Feb 26 2023 22:58 utc | 62

Thank you for that penetrating analysis. What particularly struck a chord with me was this sentence:

They were beyond the range of the middle class' media, and, it was one of the features of the lives they lived in the cities and industrial towns that they quickly distanced themselves from the churches their bosses favoured.

When I researched my family history some years ago—they came from the west of England, they came from Ironbridge, Bradford, Machynlleth, they came from Tipperary—their early hatches, matches and dispatches were to be found, sometimes even back to the 16th century, in the church records. But through the 19th, they having migrated to the coal mining valleys of the then Monmouthshire, and centres of population such as Merthyr, Tredegar and Pontypool, I found them predominantly in the chapel archives. Often their graves were to be found where there was an adjoining yard. The chapels were very much the centres of local community life, and of course the male voice choirs emanated from them.

Into the 20th century this tendency reversed. One by one the chapels closed and were put to other uses. This was perhaps not particularly due to a transfer of loyalty as to a loss of religious interest, with church attendances falling year on year. People still however often insisted on church weddings for the pomp and circumstance, but would never attend a service from one year to the next.

I have followed the recent discussion on various religious attachment with interest though from an atheist position. The community aspect I touched on above is in my experience certainly an important factor, perhaps the most important because as someone observed, surely deep down, churchgoers cannot really believe the fairy tales? The question of Jesus being the son of god was best summed up for me by an anonymous Chinese with the remark: “How strange that he did not think to visit China”.

Posted by: Walt | Feb 27 2023 1:20 utc | 86

Posted by: malenkov | Feb 27 2023 1:05 utc | 81
Here, let me share with you some ESHA thoughts:
In regards to the railcar derailment and its consequences, I have a few other final thoughts as well.

* This was an "exceptional event" no-doubt, but in all my many years of ESHA experience, I'm not aware of any time a choice was made to "blow up" leaking containers on purpose - it truly makes no sense to me and contradicts good principle after a spill/accident occurs with respect to minimizing overall impact.

** If anything, the combustion that occurred (without knowing the details as to which specific railcars - some of them had other chemicals) more than likely resulted in a "cocktail" of chemicals many of which probably remain in the atmosphere and by now are probably world-wide but diffused and sunlight will break these down over time. In addition to the various chemical gases produced (both organics and maybe various nitrogen oxides and other chemicals like HCl), I suspect there was considerable amount of particulate matter released as well.

*** The particulate formed could also have very complicated chemistry, but as long as the particle size is not too small, this particulate will deposit within a given area mostly not that far away from the event itself that could be determined with some precision particularly if real-time meteorological conditions are considered and verified by subsequent monitoring/testing.

**** I think it is going to be imperative to monitor for this deposition as river water (nearby and downstream) for any lingering effects, as well as the groundwater around the area where the derailment actually occurred. Ambient air monitoring also needs to be performed and the sooner the better. This monitoring data needs to be thorough and rigorous (it ain't gonna be cheap) and probably permanently ongoing for certain aspects - "media-specific" (air, water, soil) "chemical" markers associated with the event will need to be determined to assess with better precision and the testing methodology needs to comport with all regulatory criteria.

***** Modeling could be done on some of this, but it is uncertain territory - some preliminary dispersion modeling (both ambient air and groundwater) might help define some of the parameters for the ongoing monitoring, but the monitoring is critical and will enable better understanding of the long-term impacts

***** This whole event is a tragedy and very concerning. I would really like to know the details as to how the decisions were made early on to respond to the event because those details should be public information without a doubt - any obfuscation on this is to be treated as potentially nefarious.

Posted by: Buffalo_Ken | Feb 27 2023 1:20 utc | 87

Posted by: rjb1.5 | Feb 27 2023 1:18 utc | 85
the city makes people forget where everything comes from

per te quoniam genus omne animantum
concipitur visitque exortum lumina solis: Lucretius, DRN 1.4-5.

"the poetry means nothing." right? so why does it exist? people not hearing the truth in their prosaic speech? prosaic speech which is poetry in its own right, namely, 'just do it' false advertising?

"i don't speak my mother tongue." Rammstein, 'Amerika.'

Posted by: rjb1.5 | Feb 27 2023 1:27 utc | 88

Both the unz piece I linked and the Alistair Cooke piece @karlov linked above operate from the same premise: that there are fissures in the US elites that are driving things. This seems more or less correct to me except that so-called 'US Elites' are also esconced in most of Europe including Threadneedle Street environs and plush mountain villas near Zurich and so forth.

The SMO is clearly in no hurry to take physical terrain. It is grinding down its opposition, but that opposition is far more than the motley brigades mustered to face them in Donbass bunkers, rather the entire Western political order along with how the West views itself and the world and indeed how the RoW views itself and the world. The old order must both crumble and be seen to crumble before the new order can take its place. There will be various combination of actual and phony conflict between elite factions and geopolitical blocs. And the whole thing will only be over when our entire sense of reality has shifted. Things can happen very fast, faster than our imagination, but it would not be surprising if this takes a generation or so.

[re Civil War] why project out harmful thoughts and ideas....

Posted by: Buffalo_Ken | Feb 27 2023 0:59 utc | 80

In the piece he mentioned his favoured dynamic which is general Secessions versus any outright conflict. Of course speculating is questionable however the issue is worthy: USA as a polity is in a crisis it has rarely seen before. Collapse is an imminent possibility. It is being riven with deep internal cultural-issue divides. There is racial, gender and class hatred across the board. The situation is already rife with 'harmful thoughts and ideas.' The question is: where is a positive way forward?

Is voting in federal elections a viable way forward? I don't think so but many still do and so nothing else is ever tried. Personally I think all who vote still are part of the problem not the solution but obviously there would be a wide range of opinion on that and rightly so. What about secession? Isn't it the correct next step if the Federal Govt has far exceeded its bounds and is now a kleptocracy? Or put another way: if you people the U.S.A. is now more of a kleptocracy than a representative republic with shared values rooted in human goodness and common sense etc., what is the solution? Surely one viable solution is to admit that the original Constitution was deeply flawed, has more than run its course (if indeed it ever proceeded as intended) and it's time for a Great Reset, a good Reset.

In which case the current Constitution and Federal Construct aka 'Union' needs to be dismantled. It's a topic that should be far more widely discussed in the States IMO.

In any case, I think the SMO will keep grinding away until the fault-lines in the West start to create tremors, quakes and then crashes in their respective homelands. The SMO mission will not have succeeded until NATO is no more. For NATO to be no more the polities supporting need to be no more or at least if still extant than greatly, profoundly changed with entirely new leadership and social contracts.

That is what is in play. Just drawing up some sort of meaningless START III deal and new borders around Donbass etc. won't cut it. That ship has sailed.

Posted by: Scorpion | Feb 27 2023 1:31 utc | 89

rjb1.5 @ 42 wrote:
"why don't masks work?
because masks interrupt the operation of the facial recognition software at my ATM.
so, no, masks don't work."

I can vouch that that is true.

Posted by: jinn | Feb 27 2023 1:32 utc | 90

@ Grieved | Feb 27 2023 0:45 utc | 74 with the Turtles all the way down link and comment...thanks

Its the financialization of health care just like we have seen and discussed about other aspects of our economy (Boeing Max 737). Profit over public good has been the Western mantra since fiat money in 1971.

When you live in a God of Mammon world the incentives you live by are to make profit for others, not to live an honorable life in community with others.

Level Three is not just ordinary people and concerned parents but nations standing up to the international institutions that have been financialized as to purpose.

Thankfully, its not if any more but when the shit show "all the way down" will stop that we are watching.

Posted by: psychohistorian | Feb 27 2023 1:38 utc | 91

Bemildred @78--

Now you know why I maid my comment so short!

Posted by: karlof1 | Feb 27 2023 1:41 utc | 92

then the states are sovereign already - are they not?

Posted by: Buffalo_Ken | Feb 27 2023 1:34 utc | 91

Am not well versed in those niceties but believe that essentially the States ceded much of their Sovereignty when signing onto a collective power-sharing agreement. Since then Federal Powers and Executive scope have expanded greatly whilst State powers have receded considerably. The processes for Secession are tortuous. The Article V Convention notion is extremely easy to undermine.

I suspect they will have to go back to Common Law maxims and conventions similar to the original Dec of Ind, namely to point out various ways the current arrangement is violating the letter and spirit of the original agreement and to claim the right to withdraw given the agreement is already in breach so none of the other rules and regulations regarding Secession etc. need apply. If at some point it goes to SCOTUS who rule against them, they can again claim sovereignty at which point either there is formal civil war or there is not. But no doubt others understand these things far better.

The issue IS worth considering but not so much in terms of how to do it necessarily but whether or not there truly are still viable remedies within the status quo setup. This is where we are at now and this is rarely considered as a topic. Is the US still a functioning Representative Republic acc. to its own Constitution? I don't think so (for decades now) but how could one determine that? In how many ways is the current USG in breach of the fundamental agreements if at all? Many other similar questions (the issuance of currency, level of Income Tax, election counting systems, overreach of Intelligence etc.) These things should be seriously examined in the light of whether or not they reflect a fixable or terminal breach of the constitutionally-engendered social contract in the polity known as the United States of America. That is the first step.

Then remedies can be considered after the initial diagnosis has been well made.

(And what it the case in the US is the case in most other developed West polities as well, but the US is the one most under attack right now with possible exception of Germany.)

Posted by: Scorpion | Feb 27 2023 1:45 utc | 93

Posted by: Norwegian | Feb 26 2023 21:00 utc | 44:

"It seems there is a tendency of people claiming to be mind readers around here. That is stupid, because only I know the truth of what goes on in my mind and I can thus call them out as the liars"

From my experience, the people who hide behind a statement like, "you can't read my mind" know full well that everyone has observed what they are thinking by what they have said.

If that were not true they would try to explain what they are thinking, but instead instead explaining their views, they say "you can't read my mind" as a method of running away and hiding from what they have previously said.

Posted by: jinn | Feb 27 2023 1:49 utc | 94

Posted by: juliania | Feb 27 2023 0:38 utc | 71

No worries at all. The same; thanks for your response. I think my original question was probably a little strange/confusing anyway since I kind of threw a wrench into the otherwise mostly on topic thread. :-)

Posted by: Tom_Q_Collins | Feb 27 2023 1:58 utc | 95

here are 5 states I think would be well-advised to stick together as a region: NC, VA, WV, KY, TN. I mean really are they truly 5 states, well I reckon after the 1st Civil War that is the case.
The heart of the matter in my mind is - are we not smart enough yet to avoid the mistakes of history past because war is not a forgone conclusion to a thinking man - nor does it need to be and nor is it in the interest of peasants such as myself.

Posted by: Buffalo_Ken | Feb 27 2023 1:52 utc | 97

First: why not GA, FL, LA, TX, AZ and a few more?
Second: again, I think before leaping ahead to such things the first job is to really dig down and clearly articulate the grievances. Then there would be a similar digging down to determine remedies. Then getting a large movement in favour. Then pulling the trigger. But without getting detailed and specific about the grievances it is hard to argue for any specific remedy.

It also happens to be an axiom in terms of how the human body-mind matrix works that often clearly seeing the obstacle is the beginning of remedying it because all obstacles have ignorance at their root one aspect of which is inability to see clearly what is actually going on right now in the present moment. It is easy to leap ahead conceptually, often in grand and genuinely intelligent ways, but real progress involving millions who live on the ground in ordinary reality can only take place at that ground, human level, so ideologies and Big Schemes should be avoided and rather very elementary common sense basic steps. Again the first of which has to be very precise, accurate and detailed examination of the current situation and its problems.

This is rarely done except in rather vague terms laced with various styles of emotive outrage. Understandable, but won't get much done. (Not saying you espoused any such thing, just sayin').

With respect tambien, Scorp.

Posted by: Scorpion | Feb 27 2023 2:11 utc | 96

Back during the protests and police crackdowns and riots in 2020 there was a heated, but mostly civil discussion here at MoA. I recall bringing up the history of the Feds infiltrating peaceful protest movements and attempting, often succeeding in stoking violence and property damage. I had also pointed out a couple of cases where likely right-wing or "anarchist" infiltrators like "The Umbrella Man" from the Minneapolis AutoZone were doing the same. Anyway, I don't read The Intercept anymore, but someone emailed me this article a few minutes ago, and it's pretty interesting.

Krystal Ball (sorry always chuckle when I see that name - is it real?) and Kyle Kulinski also did a recent podcast episode on the case and the phenomenon.

Posted by: Tom_Q_Collins | Feb 27 2023 2:12 utc | 97

Who could do such analysis?

How about: RFK Jr, PCR, Rand Paul, Thomas Sowell & Clarence Thomas worked together on an Ad-Hoc Constitional Commission to clearly enunciate where the current polity has veered off course and what constitional or extra-constitutional Common Law remedies (if any) there might be. (And maybe karlof would like to sit in?!)

But again: clearly identifying the core problems would be a HUGE step forward for the country to have these things spelled out in black and white without media or partisan spin & hysteria, nor endless 'what-if we do this' distractions which only ensure that nothing ever gets done.

Posted by: Scorpion | Feb 27 2023 2:20 utc | 98

Tom Q Collins @ 100:

The phenomenon is not new unfortunately. Back in the early 1970s 1990s the FBI infiltrated a group planning to bomb the World Trade Center. The FBI even sent bomb-making instructions and materials to the engineer in the group before thinking better of it.

At about the same time the Feds were trying to arrest a fellow called Randy Weaver on various grounds (owning illegal firearms among others) by trying to entice him through informants and infiltrators to join Aryan Nations or be in possession of a sawn-off rifle. Weaver managed to evade such ruses before US Marshals officers besieged him and his family in Idaho. The siege ended after the FBI got involved and killed Weaver's wife. By then Weaver's son was already dead after a shoot-out with the marshals.

Posted by: Jen | Feb 27 2023 2:29 utc | 99

Sorry, a typo appeared in my comment @ 102. The events I describe took place about 1993, give or take a couple of years.

Posted by: Jen | Feb 27 2023 2:31 utc | 100

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