i AM GOING INTO THE HOSPITAL TOMORROW (TUESDAY) FOR MY FIRST CATARACT SURGERY AND WILL NOT BE WORKING TUESDAY AND WEDNESDAY. IF ALL GOES WELL I…
Thought for the day
"Everything went strictly ‘by the book,’ using means that were permitted by the constitution. At first there were ‘emergency decrees’ by the president of the Reich, and later a bill was passed by a two-thirds majority of the Reichstag giving the government unlimited legislative powers, perfectly in accordance with the rules for changing the constitution." -- Sebastian Haffner, Defying Hitler (paperback, Kindle, audiobook)
Only 39 percent of Americans approve of President Joe Biden, while just 25 percent of independents approve of the president, a Wednesday Ipsos poll revealed.
Florida’s Polk County Sheriff’s Office announced Thursday that a child sex sting operation had resulted in the arrest of 13 men, including one Disney employee.
The leading transgender health association has released its much-anticipated new guidelines. One aspect noticeably different from previous editions is that the explicitly stated minimal age recommendations for minors to obtain puberty blockers, cross-sex hormones, and surgeries have been removed.
A horrifying video showed a murder that unfolded in Tupelo, Mississippi, at a convenience store on Sunday where a “very gracious” man working at the store was allegedly “executed” by the suspect, police said.
It’s hard to grasp just how badly humanity is handicapping itself by excluding all solutions that can’t generate a profit. There’s a whole vast spectrum of potential solutions to the troubles we face as a species, and we’re limiting ourselves to a very small, very shitty fraction of it. By limiting solutions to ones that are profitable, we’re omitting any which involve using less, consuming less, leaving resources in the ground, and leaving nature the fuck alone. We’re also shrinking the incentive to cure problems rather than offer expensive, ongoing treatments.
Or even a project as fundamental to our survival as getting all the pollution out of our oceans. The profit motive offers no solution because there’s no way to make a surplus of money from doing so, and in fact it would be very costly. So the pollution stays in our seas, year after year. People have come up with plenty of solutions for removing pollution from the sea, but they never get rolled out at the necessary scale because there’s no way to make it profitable. And people would come up with far more solutions if they knew those solutions could be implemented.
Two drag shows scheduled in two parts of the country have two different interpretations by the public.
In Memphis, Tennessee, the Museum of Science and History has its “Summer of Pride” program in progress. Part of the program includes a family-friendly drag show. It is the first time a drag show is part of the program.
The museum, which focuses on exploration, discovery, nature, science, culture, and history, is expanding those areas with its Memphis Proud Drag Show and Dance Party. According to the museum website, the September 23 show and the party are open to all ages.
The party host is Barbie Wyre, a drag clown, along with six other performers who provide the entertainment. Before the drag show, a “Cocktails and Chemistry” event takes place on September 16.
The second drag event is a mere 1,584 miles away in Pocatello, Idaho. Unlike the upcoming Memphis event, Post Millennial reports the “Back to School All Ages Drag Show” was canceled due to “misinterpretation of marketing materials.”
Facebook groups are using the carrot emoji to hide anti-vax content from automated moderation tools.
The BBC has seen several groups, one with hundreds of thousands of members, in which the emoji appears in place of the word "vaccine".
Facebook's algorithms tend to focus on words rather than images.
The groups are being used to share unverified claims of people being either injured or killed by vaccines.
Once the BBC alerted Facebook's parent company, Meta, the groups were removed.
"We have removed this group for violating our harmful misinformation policies and will review any other similar content in line with this policy. We continue to work closely with public health experts and the UK government to further tackle Covid vaccine misinformation," the firm said in a statement.
At least ten people have been killed and four others are missing after 16 inches of rain hit the central Italian region of Marche in just two hours, causing catastrophic floods.
Local authorities said they did not expect such a sudden 'water bomb', as around 16 inches of rain fell within two hours on Thursday night, inundating the streets of several towns in the Ancona and Pesaro-Urbino provinces.
'It was like an earthquake,' Ludovico Caverni, the mayor of the town of Serra Sant'Abbondio, told RAI state radio.
Webmaster addition: Drought? What drought?!?
Today I will keep it very short using my favorite bullet-style points:
- By most credible accounts, the recent Ukronazi+NATO attack in the Kharkov area was even more costly in KIA/MIA, wounded and lost hardware than the attack towards Kherson. The combined losses from these attacks are staggering.
- Yet there are all the signs that the Ukronazi+NATO forces are preparing for even more such attacks.
- The Ukronazi+NATO seem happy to trade human lives for territorial gains, no matter how small or how irrelevant that territory is.
- The Russians seem happy to trade space and time to protect the lives of their soldiers and equipment.
- We could say that the Ukronazi+NATO are trading bodies for shells.
Let’s remember the two goals set by Putin for the SMO: denazify and demilitarize. Both of these goals are human-focused, not terrain-focused. In other words, if a tactical-level withdrawal allows the Russian to kill scores of Ukronazi+NATO personnel and destroy their equipment, they will gladly accept the trade.
The other goal was to protect the LDNR. Kherson is not part of the LDNR.
Territory can be reconquered, equipment is hard to replace, especially complex weapon-systems.
And soldiers cannot be resurrected.
Russian Foreign Minister Sergey Lavrov said he was not surprised by the Kiev government’s plans to introduce criminal responsibility for Ukrainian citizens applying for Russian passports.
"I have already grown tired of being baffled by their moves," the minister said during Thursday’s broadcast of Channel One, when asked to comment on the initiative.
The press service of the Ukrainian ministry of reintegration of uncontrolled territories announced on Wednesday that it was designing a bill to make application for Russian citizenship a criminal offense. According to the document, obtaining a Russian passport can only be justified when its holder is planning to return to Ukraine via Russia and third countries.
Alexey Arestovich, an adviser to the head of the Ukrainian presidential office, said earlier that Ukrainians who had obtained Russian citizenship will be tried for high treason.
Prosecutors have scrutinized a former top official in the FBI who played a pivotal role in the bureau’s investigation of former President Donald Trump’s 2016 campaign over his alleged ties to Russia and other foreign governments.
“Saturday Night Live” has added its first “non-binary” cast member, and no, it’s not just a return of Pat.
Kremlin spokesman Dmitry Peskov on Thursday refuted media reports about an alleged assassination attempt on Russian President Vladimir Putin.
Claims of an earlier attack on the head of state’s car convoy en route to the presidential residence were first published by a Telegram channel on September 14, and were later reproduced by a UK tabloid, The Sun.
When asked whether those reports had any factual basis, Putin’s press secretary replied to TASS: ‘No.’.
A top medical journal at the heart of several pandemic-related controversies published a major COVID-19 Commission report Wednesday that concluded the deadly pathogen might possibly have leaked from a United States laboratory.
The eyebrow-raising suggestion—which was just a part of a 58-page analysis of the COVID pandemic and its origins—in The Lancet stated that it was “feasible” that the SARS-CoV-2 virus emerged either as a natural spillover event or as a leak from a lab. While the report mentions facilities in Wuhan, China, it also says that “independent researchers have not yet investigated” U.S. laboratories, adding that the National Institutes of Health has “resisted disclosing details” of its research on SARS-CoV-related viruses.
The White House on Wednesday announced it would send over $1 billion in security assistance to Egypt. The Joe Biden administration approved the aid as several top Democratic lawmakers pushed to reduce security assistance for Egypt by $300 million. While Egyptian military dictator Abdel Fattah el-Sisi’s government is creditably accused of severe human rights abuses, Cairo is the third-largest recipient of US aid.
Washington sends military aid to Egypt to bribe the government in Cairo to adopt policies favorable towards Tel Aviv. Egypt’s tight control over a key border crossing in the heavily blockaded Gaza Strip – one of few exits from the area not passing through Israeli territory – has been crucial in maintaining Tel Aviv’s dominance over 2 million Palestinians living in the crowded enclave, sandwiched between Israel and Egypt on the Mediterranean Sea.
Sisi swept to power in Egypt by killing hundreds of protesters and persecuting his political rivals. While he claims to hold elections, opposition candidates are frequently subject to imprisonment. Mohamed Morsi, Egypt’s only democratically elected leader, died imprisoned by Sisi.
The US and its allies are in talks over whether to send Ukraine more advanced weapons in the future, including fighter jets, US defense sources have said, according to the Financial Times. The Kharkiv counteroffensive has apparently emboldened Ukrainian officials to press Washington harder for more advanced and longer-range weapons, now that some degree of success in rolling back Russian forces can be demonstrated.
The idea is that if Ukraine's forces can prove they've taken back significant territory with what defense systems the US has provided so far, they can ultimately make the case that the whole of the east and south is within their reach - and even the potential to liberate Crimea while they're at it - if longer range and more advanced arms are made available.
Remarks from Lisa Belcastro, the coordinator for Martha’s Vineyard homeless shelter Harbor Homes, went viral Thursday after she was asked about 50 illegal immigrants arriving on the island.
Despite many complaints, appeals and critiques, the infamous Ukrainian website “Myrotvorets” remains active on the internet. The site exposes the personal data of thousands of people considered enemies by the Ukrainian neo-Nazi regime, making it the largest public kill-list ever witnessed. The most terrible point of this situation is that hundreds of ethnic Russian children are included in this list. Russian diplomats demand a position on the part of UNICEF on the matter, but international organizations remain silent.
Although Myrotvorets is officially an NGO, in practice it operates in a fully integrated manner with the Ukrainian government. The very purpose of the site is to provide a database of alleged “enemies” of the Ukrainian state, thus being much more of a Kiev intelligence department than an NGO. The website project started precisely in 2014, as well as the beginning of the ethnic and political persecution against Russian citizens and Maidan’s opponents. Also, it must be noted that many of the people included in the list were actually murdered, such as Russian journalist Daria Dugina, which shows that Ukrainian intelligence forces really use the data provided by Myrotvorets and try to “fulfill” the kill-list proposed by the website.
However, what is most shocking in this issue is the presence of children on this list. The Ukrainian government and its allied neo-Nazi organizations do not seem to distinguish who actually poses a threat to the Maidan’s political regime and who does not. For them, everyone who opposes the government and publicly expresses their critical opinions must be exterminated, even innocent civilians and children. According to a recent data survey by journalist Mira Terada, at least 327 children would have had their personal data exposed by Myrotvorets. Considering that Ukrainian forces really try to kill those on this list, the lives of these children are in danger.
Rep. Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez (D-NY) exploded at a Republican member during a House Oversight Committee hearing after he questioned a witness who repeatedly shouted while being questioned.
Phil Washington, Joe Biden’s nominee to head the Federal Aviation Administration, was just served with a warrant in a criminal case.
President Biden’s nominee to head the FAA, Phil Washington, had a warrant served this morning in the criminal case involving his previous role at Los Angeles County Metropolitan Transit Authority.
Washington is the current head of Denver International Airport. The Denver City Council approved hiring him despite a criminal investigation covering his prior role in Los Angeles where a whistleblower – that Washington calls a disgruntled employee – claims there was a corrupt contracting process. In particular several no-bid contracts for LA Metro’s sexual harassment hotline were awarded at a cost of over $8,000 per call to a charity led to a friend and donor of Metro board member and L.A. County Supervisor Sheila Kuehl. She says the contract decision was Washington’s.
Whether there was actual, prosecutable corruption, or mere incompetence – and whether Washington was involved in any corruption or simply a hands-off manager – the scenarios and optics here do not look good for his nomination or for the Biden administration.
Is this what a party does when it can’t keep voting on articles of impeachment?
It’s been almost two years since former President Donald Trump’s defeat, yet House Democrats have managed to build an entire legislative agenda around Trump Derangements Syndrome.
The House Oversight and Reform Committee alone has been firing away Trump-obsessed legislation, as Democratic sponsors for bills on the Census, civil service, and whistleblower protections all cite Trump as a key part of the justification for the proposals. The common line connecting all the bills is to curb executive power that should be in the hands of an elected president and enhance the power of unelected and largely unaccountable bureaucrats.
Three of the bills that began in the oversight panel cleared the House Rules Committee this week to move to the House floor.
Trump Derangement Syndrome is clearly real. To be clear, it’s not necessarily better or worse than Trump sycophancy. Americans–whether serving in public office or everyday working stiffs–should never base their life around idolatry of or seething hatred for one prominent leader. But, of course, that has happened with Trump. I suppose polarizing is a shorter way to put it, but that term seems so trite.
A new survey has found that almost four out of five refugees living in Sweden have vacationed in the countries that they originally fled from.
The survey was conducted by polling firm Novus on behalf of the Swedish online newspaper Bulletin.
It found that 79 per cent of people who arrived in Sweden as refugees, supposedly fleeing war or persecution, have returned to their home country since arriving in Sweden.
“According to the survey, they do not wish, however, to return home permanently,” reports Remix News. “When asked whether they plan to permanently return to their country of birth in the future, just 2 percent say they do, while 16 percent say maybe — 81 percent of those who arrived in Sweden from non-European countries say they do not, primarily because they believe Sweden to be a better country to raise their children.”
Russia’s largest oil producer, state-owned Rosneft, reported on Thursday a 13% increase in its first-half net income compared to the same period last year, boasting increased efficiency despite the Western sanctions on Russia over the invasion of Ukraine.
Rosneft’s net profit increased to $7.2 billion (432 billion Russian rubles) in the first half of 2022.
The company’s oil and gas production rose by 1.5% to 4.85 million barrels of oil equivalent per day (boepd) as compared to the same assets it held last year, excluding assets disposed of in 2021.
“In 1H 2022, Rosneft was under an unprecedented pressure of adverse external factors and unlawful sanctions. However, thanks to high operational efficiency and appropriate management decisions, we were able to ensure business continuity and demonstrate stable results,” Rosneft’s Chairman of the Management Board and Chief Executive Officer Igor Sechin – a long-time ally of Putin – said in a statement.
“1H 2022 financial results form a solid basis for interim dividends payment and a further growth of total payments for 2022,” Sechin added.
Russia is said to be angered Thursday after European Commision president Ursula von der Leyen went to Kiev to meet with President Volodymyr Zelensky for the first time since Ukraine was given EU candidate status in June - something which she hailed during remarks.
"So much has changed. Ukraine is now an EU candidate," she said in a social media post. It was her third trip overall to the war-ravaged country since the invasion began in February. "I'll discuss with (President Volodymyr) Zelensky and (Prime Minister) Denys Shmygal how to continue getting our economies and people closer while Ukraine progresses towards accession," she had described headed into talks.
The threat of power rationing across Europe persists even after EU officials held an emergency meeting last week to starve off the impending winter energy crisis. EU countries have increasingly relied on US energy imports, though shale bosses warned the ability to boost oil and gas supplies would be challenging.
"It's not like the US can pump a bunch more. Our production is what it is," Wil VanLoh, head of private equity group Quantum Energy Partners, one of the shale's most prominent investors, told Financial Times.
"There's no bailout coming," VanLoh added.
"Not on the oil side, not on the gas side.
Europe can thank the Democrats and the Biden administration for their war against crushing the US energy industry that led to massive divestments across the sector, which crippled oil production growth and refining capacity, and pressured/shamed the world into withdrawing any capital allocations to fossil fuels.
A special master has been appointed to act as a firewall between the Justice Department and materials seized during an Aug. 8 raid on former President Trump's Mar-a-Lago residence in Palm Beach, Florida.
In a pair of Thursday orders from federal district Judge Aileen Cannon, the DOJ's motion to access a subset of classified records stored on the Trump property was denied, and a recently retired judge that both the DOJ and Trump's team agreed on - recently retired Judge Raymond Dearie - will serve as special master.
Tiny folded diamonds that fell to Earth from an ancient dwarf star may sound like something from an intergalactic feature film, but researchers from Australia and the United Kingdom have proven the existence of the rare gems after examining a stony meteorite.
Scientists from Australia and the UK have established the existence of lonsdaleite, a rare hexagonal diamond, no bigger than a human hair, that researchers note is layered into a distinctive folded pattern, unlike the earth-formed diamonds that have a cubic structure.
The existence of Lonsdaleite—named after the pioneering British crystallographer Dame Kathleen Lonsdale—has previously been the subject of debate because its very existence could not be proven.