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Twitter accounts suspended for “COVID-19 misinformation” have increased over 70%

By Tom Parker | Reclaim The Net | July 28, 2022

Twitter suspended a record 4,466 accounts for violating its “COVID-19 misinformation” rules in H1 2022, according to the latest stats in its COVID-19 Misinformation Transparency Report. This represents a more than 70% increase from its previous record of suspending 2,614 accounts for violating the COVID-19 misinformation rules in H2 2021.

The report also revealed that Twitter removed 13,803 pieces of content and challenged (forced the account owner to verify their account with an email or phone number) 7,025 accounts for violating its COVID-19 misinformation rules in H2 2021.

One of the most controversial aspects of Twitter’s far-reaching COVID-19 misinformation rules is that users who repeatedly claim that vaccinated people can spread COVID-19 can be banned from the platform.

When Twitter introduced this rule, even the CDC was admitting that vaccinated people can become infected and “have the potential to spread the virus to others.” More recently, former White House COVID response coordinator Dr. Deborah Birx admitted during congressional testimony that the US government’s claim that the vaccinated can’t spread the virus was based on “hope” and acknowledged during a recent interview that she “knew” the vaccines do not protect against infection and that the US government “overplayed them.”

Despite these admissions and acknowledgments, this rule that bans users from saying vaccinated people can spread the virus is still in place.

Other claims that are banned under Twitter’s COVID-19 misinformation rules include “claims contrary to health authorities” that Twitter deems to “misrepresent research or statistical findings pertaining to the severity of the disease, prevalence of the virus, or effectiveness of widely accepted preventative measures, treatments, or vaccines” and claims that the vaccines are part of a “global surveillance” effort.

Twitter hasn’t published its censorship stats for July but several high-profile COVID commentators, including British consultant surgeon Tony Hinton and epidemiologist Andrew Bostom, have already been banned from the platform this month.

July 28, 2022 Posted by | Full Spectrum Dominance, Science and Pseudo-Science | , , | 1 Comment

Play with fire – get burned, China warns US

Samizdat | July 28, 2022

Taiwan is a part of China and the 1.4 billion Chinese will not tolerate any challenges to the country’s national sovereignty and territorial integrity, President Xi Jinping told his US counterpart, Joe Biden, in a phone call on Thursday. Xi’s warning comes amid reports that House Speaker Nancy Pelosi is preparing to visit the island next month, something Beijing has warned her against.

Xi “highlighted that the historical ins and outs of the Taiwan question are crystal clear, and so are the fact and status quo that both sides of the Taiwan Strait belong to one and the same China,” according to Beijing’s readout of Thursday’s call, also noting that Biden was the one who initiated it.

China is firmly opposed to Taiwanese separatism and will not tolerate “independence” for the island “in whatever form,” Xi told Biden, in the first direct call between the two leaders since March 18.

“Those who play with fire will perish by it. It is hoped that the US will be clear-eyed about this.”

According to the readout, Xi also told Biden that the US approach to China as the primary rival, strategic competitor, and a security challenge “would be misperceiving China-US relations and misreading China’s development,” adding that US attempts at “decoupling or severing supply chains in defiance of underlying laws” would not help its economy, but “only make the world economy more vulnerable.”

China and the US need to “uphold the international system centering on the UN and the international order underpinned by international law,” said Xi, who also “reiterated China’s principled position” on the crisis in Ukraine.

The much shorter White House readout of the call did not mention Ukraine or the specifics of economic discussions, instead singling out the issues of “climate change and health security.” It did, however, say that the call was “part of the Biden Administration’s efforts to maintain and deepen lines of communication between the United States and the PRC and responsibly manage our differences and work together where our interests align.”

When it comes to Taiwan, Biden “underscored that the US policy has not changed and that the US strongly opposes unilateral efforts to change the status quo or undermine peace and stability across the Taiwan Strait,” according to the White House.

Tensions between China and the US have escalated in recent weeks, after reports that House Speaker Nancy Pelosi (D-California) intended to take a congressional delegation to Taiwan in August.

Pelosi has neither confirmed nor denied the trip. Asked about it earlier this month, Biden said the US military thought it was “not a good idea right now.”

Since then, however, the Pentagon has reportedly developed a “contingency plan” to send additional ships and fighter jets to the region. Meanwhile, Chinese officials threatened the US with “unbearable consequences” should Pelosi go forward with her visit, and some pundits even advocated attacking Taiwan in response to such a “provocation.”

House Speaker Newt Gingrich visited Taiwan in 1997, but as government officials in Beijing have noted, he was opposition leader at the time, while Pelosi is from the same party as Biden.

Taiwan has been ruled by the nationalist Kuomintang, who found refuge on the island after losing the civil war to the Communists in 1949 and leaving the mainland with US help.

July 28, 2022 Posted by | Aletho News | , | 4 Comments

Lavrov is on Blinken’s list of people to call

BY M. K. BHADRAKUMAR | INDIAN PUNCHLINE | JULY 28, 2022 

The US Secretary of State Antony Blinken at a press availability at the State Department on Wednesday made the dramatic announcement that he intends to speak to his Russian counterpart Sergey Lavrov “in the coming days … for the first time since the war began” in Ukraine on February 24. 

Interestingly, he gave an alibi that harks back to the Soviet era — prisoner exchange. 

The US is offering a swap of a Russian entrepreneur Viktor Bout, who was arrested in Thailand in 2008 on a US warrant and later convicted to 25 years in prison on charges of weapons trafficking, in exchange for Brittney Griner, a basketball star who has been detained at Moscow airport on drug charges and, importantly, Paul Whelan, an ex-US Marine, who was arrested in Russia in 2018 and sentenced to 16 years in prison two years later on charges of espionage. 

Whelan surely was a prize catch for the Russians. The American ambassador in Moscow had been visiting him in prison.

Blinken also added a second topic he’d like to discuss with Lavrov — implementation of the recent “grain deal”. Washington played no role in negotiating the deal and is presumably hoping to make a lateral entry into the matrix now. Blinken claimed he is “seeing and hearing around the world a desperate need for food, a desperate need for prices to decrease.  And if we can help through our direct diplomacy encourage the Russians to make good on the commitments they’ve made, that will help people around the world, and I’m determined to do it.” 

Interestingly, in a veiled reference to the US, Turkish Foreign Minister Mevlut Cavuсoglu stated Wednesday on broadcaster Tv100 that there were countries who “wanted to block” the grain deal between Russia and Turkey, who want the Ukraine conflict “to prolong”, as they think the longer Moscow’s special military operation continues, “the weaker Russia will be.” 

Fair enough. Blinken then came to the real purpose of his forthcoming call with Lavrov — “the plans that Russia now has to pursue the annexation of Ukrainian territory.” 

Blinken repeated the hyperbole that sanctions are having “a powerful and also growing effect” and has “weakened Russia profoundly” and the Biden administration will do all that it can “to strengthen Ukraine’s position on the battlefield so it has the strongest possible position at the negotiating table.” 

However, what comes through is the growing disquiet in Washington that to its utter disbelief, the Russian stance has only hardened lately. Blinken said it is “causing alarms.” In particular, he noted Lavrov’s remark last week that the Kremlin’s goals in Ukraine had expanded. “Now they seek to claim more Ukrainian territory, beyond the Donbas,” he commented.  

Indeed, the war has spun out of US algorithm. As Hungarian PM Orban pointed out last week, anti-Russian sanctions “have not shaken Moscow,” but Europe has already lost four governments and is in an economic and political crisis. 

Russia is paying back to the US and NATO in the same coin that the latter did when they dismembered Yugoslavia. The NATO’s war in Yugoslavia came at a time when Russia was weak and it helplessly watched the West carving up a fellow Slavic country. 

Russia will not be deterred now, as it is already past the mid-stream. Blinken noted frantically, “I think it’s very important now that we see what Russia’s next plan is – that is, the annexation of more Ukrainian territory – that the Russians, Foreign Minister Lavrov, hear directly from me on behalf of the United States that we see what they’re doing, we know what they’re doing, and we will never accept it. It will never be legitimised. There will always be consequences if that’s what they do and that’s what they try to sustain.” 

However, the paradox is, the initiative still lies with the US. The Russian army will move deeper into Ukraine in proportion to the US’ supply of advanced weapons with long reach into Russian territory. But Moscow is interested only so that Russian territory is safe from any attack from Ukraine.

It is the Biden administration’s choice to extend the duration of the war or escalate the scope of the Russian operation. Washington made a catastrophic mistake to torpedo the Russian-Ukrainian deal stuck in April in Istanbul when Kiev agreed to settle for the modest Russian demands.

But those were halcyon days when US Defence Secretary Lloyd Austin quipped — with Blinken by his side — after a quick trip to Kiev that the US wanted to see Russia “weakened to the degree that it cannot do the kinds of things that it has done in invading Ukraine.” Austin boasted that Russia had “already lost a lot of military capability” and “a lot of its troops. We want to see them not have the capability to very quickly reproduce that capability.” 

Hearing Austin’s battle cry, Blinken chimed in: “The strategy that we’ve put in place, the massive support for Ukraine, the massive pressure against Russia, in solidarity with more than 30 countries engaged in these efforts, is having real results. And we’re seeing that when it comes to Russian war aims.”

“Russia is failing. Ukraine is succeeding,” Blinken claimed. That triumphalism was not there in Blinken’s performance yesterday. 

A great beauty about press conferences is that some journalists make it lively and revealing. So, one American journalist asked Blinken, “you have been talking about how Russia is isolated internationally, and yet we see Foreign Minister Lavrov jetting off around Africa and the Middle East and President Putin going to Tehran… They make the case that they’re not isolated, and now you’re about to have this conversation with them. So what does that say about the administration’s efforts to isolate Russia when you are actually now reaching out to them to talk about the issues?”  

Blinken’s explanation: “Matt, in terms of some of the travels that the foreign minister, for example, is engaged in, what I see is a desperate game of defence to try somehow to justify to the world the actions that Russia has taken…” 

Yet, EU foreign policy chief Josep Borrell bitterly complained yesterday, “Lavrov visits to try to convince Africans that European sanctions are to blame for everything that is happening … and the entire western press repeats this. When I’m going to Africa to say the opposite, that sanctions have nothing to do with it, no one picks it up!” 

The spectre of the collapse of EU economies is rattling the Biden Administration. A CNN report yesterday was titled US officials say ‘biggest fear’ has come true as Russia cuts gas supplies to Europe. It said the Biden administration “is working furiously behind the scenes to keep European allies united” as the blowback from the sanctions against Russia hits them and the “impact on Europe could boomerang back onto the US, spiking natural gas and electricity prices.” 

The report quoted an unnamed US official saying Russia’s retaliation for western sanctions has put the West in “unchartered territory.” Suffice to say, Blinken’s call underscores the desperate urgency in Washington to open a line of communication to Moscow at the political level. 

How this volte-face plays out in European capitals, especially Kiev remains to be seen. Blinken led the western boycott of Lavrov at the G20 Foreign Ministers’ Meeting in Bali as recently as July 7-8. President Biden extended a glamorous welcome to Zelensky’s wife Olena Zelenska to the White House who was on a high-profile visit last week, even as Blinken was preparing his stunning announcement. 

July 28, 2022 Posted by | Economics | , , | 4 Comments

Ukraine is Losing the War, and So is Europe

By Oscar Silva-Valladares | Ron Paul Institute | July 27, 2022

Beyond the damage in Ukraine, the war also has significant casualties in the rest of Europe as the continent is losing its most competitive energy supplies, compromising the region’s manufacturing edge and accelerating an inflation wave that through higher energy costs will severely affect the wellbeing of its population this coming winter.

Europe has been trying for years to diversify its energy sources but it did not have a comprehensive contingency plan to counteract the impact of abruptly severing access to Russia’s oil and gas since the beginning of the Ukraine war. European politicians have grossly exaggerated the substitution potential of other energy sources (like LNG) and are facing the need to accept alternatives that not too long ago were considered politically unpalatable, like the reopening of coal production in Germany.

How did this gross miscalculation take place? Clearly, the European leadership has been unable to foresee the true economic consequences in Europe and beyond of the economic war unleashed against Russia. One explanation for the boldness and self-confidence surrounding the European standing against Russia at the beginning of the war was a strong belief that the combination of anti-Russian sanctions and military support to Ukraine would cause a significant weakening of Russia’s political, social and military standing leading to its defeat. This explains for instance bold statements that the war would only be solved in the field as it was confidently said by the EU’s foreign affairs representative back in March.

It can be argued that the wrong assessment on the war outcome has its roots in faulty US-British intelligence which forecasted Russia’s defeat through economic warfare and, therefore, a limited impact of sanctions on Europe. This not being the case has now made European leadership to scramble for solutions. Meanwhile, the political fallout is already taking place, with Britain and Italy’s prime ministers being the most visible casualties as victims of domestic political events unleashed by their own Russian sanctions. More importantly, it doesn’t seem that the remaining European leadership (led by von der Leyen, Macron and Scholz) is willing to change course without losing significant credibility.

On the other hand, dissenting and unorthodox European political views are sounding louder, as Hungarian prime minister Orban’s recent speech where he boldly mentioned that Russian sanctions and arming Ukraine have failed, Ukraine can’t win the war, the more weapons go to Ukraine the more territory it will lose and that the West should stop arming Ukraine and focus on diplomacy.

At the heart of Europe’s current troubles is its inability to balance its economic and security interests with enough autonomy to be able to look after its own interests. European ambiguity is not new, it has roots in the post-World War II architecture and the aftermath of the collapse of the Soviet Union, and in relation to Ukraine it manifested in its ineptitude to enforce the Minsk agreements that clearly offered a Russo-Ukrainian peace path but were unable to be enforced by France and Germany due to relentless US and Ukrainian pressure.

It seems that only significant political alterations in the European countries that matter -namely France, Germany and Italy- will allow a meaningful change of course from the current path of confrontation with Russia and ultimately economic self-destruction. Otherwise, any political initiative towards solving the war will be left in the hands of Russia and the United States and, if that is the case, any lasting agreement will not have European interests at heart. It would be tragic that a core European problem like the Ukraine war is finally solved through the dealings of an Euro-Asian and an American power.

Oscar Silva-Valladares is a former investment banker that has lived and worked in North and Latin America, Western & Eastern Europe, Saudi Arabia, Japan, the Philippines and Western Africa. He currently chairs Davos International Advisory, an advisory firm focused on strategic consulting across emerging markets.


Copyright © 2022 by RonPaul Institute

July 28, 2022 Posted by | Economics, Militarism | , , | Leave a comment

US Should Not Fund Ukrainian ‘Blacklist’

Consortium News | July 27, 2022

Scott Ritter was among those blacklisted by a Ukrainian government agency that appears to be funded by the United States. Ritter has written the following letter to his representatives in Congress.

Senator Charles Schumer

Leo W. O’Brien Federal Office Building

11A Clinton Avenue, Room 827

Albany, NY 12207

Senator Christine Gillibrand

Leo W. O’Brien Federal Office Building

11A Clinton Avenue, Room 821

Albany, NY 12207

Representative Paul Tonko

19 Dove Street, Unit 302

Albany, NY 12210

July 27, 2022

Dear Senators Schumer and Gillibrand, and Congressman Tonko,

My name is Scott Ritter. I am a New York State resident, currently residing in the Town of Bethlehem, in Albany County. My family and I have lived at our current address since July 2000.

I am writing to you in your collective role as my elected representatives in the United States Congress, specifically regarding H.R. 7691, the Additional Supplemental Appropriations Act of 2022, which became Public Law 117-128 on May 21, 2022, which each of you voted in favor of.

I draw your attention to the First Amendment of the United States Constitution, specifically the following language: “Congress shall make no law…abridging the freedom of speech, or of the press.”

By enacting Public Law 117-128, you appear to have abrogated your Constitutional responsibilities in so far as you may have, in fact, made a law which both abridges the freedom of speech and a free press by enabling the Government of Ukraine, through the use of US taxpayer dollars appropriated under Public Law 117-128, to publish a “blacklist” singling out US citizens as “Russian propagandists” for exercising their Constitutional rights pertaining to free speech and a free press.

The “blacklist” in question was published on July 14, 2022, by the Ukrainian Center for Countering Disinformation, and consists of a list of politicians, academics, and activists who the Center claims promote “Russian propaganda.” Many on this list are citizens of the United States, some of whom, like me, have taken an oath to uphold and defend the Constitution of the United States.

While the specific criterion used by the Ukrainian Center for Countering Disinformation for selecting persons for inclusion on this “blacklist” is not known, in my case the Ukrainian government appears to have taken umbrage against my articulation of Ukraine as a NATO base of operations, my analysis of the Bucha Massacre in early March which assigns responsibility to Ukrainian security services, and my description of the current Ukraine-Russian conflict as a “proxy conflict” being waged on behalf of the United States.

Whether one agrees with my positions on these and other matters pertaining to Ukraine is not the point; by articulating my views, I am exercising my rights under the Constitution of the United States. While the Government of Ukraine is free to express its opinions regarding my viewpoints as it sees fit, the Government of the United States, by using funds appropriated by the United States Congress, should not facilitate the actions of the Government of Ukraine in this regard.

I draw your attention to Section 507(a) of Public Law 117-128, which directs that “[f]unds made available by this title under the heading Economic Support Fund may be made available for direct financial support for the Government of Ukraine.”

Public Law 117-128 makes available $8,766,000,000 for assistance for Ukraine under the heading “Economic Support Fund.”

On July 12, 2022, the United States Agency for International Development (USAID) issued a press release in which it announced that $1.7 billion in direct budgetary aid was provided to Ukraine under Public Law 117-128, which allowed the Government of Ukraine, among other things, to pay the salaries of Ukrainian civil servants. This would logically include the salaries of the employees of the Ukrainian Center for Countering Disinformation.

As a constituent whose name has appeared on a so-called “blacklist” published by the Ukrainian Center for Countering Disinformation, my personal and professional life has been, and continues to be, detrimentally impacted by the chilling effect of being labeled a “Russian propagandist” for simply exercising the right to free speech guaranteed by the United States Constitution. Moreover, Ukraine has a history of converting “blacklists” of this nature into “kill lists”, where those who speak out against the policies of the Ukrainian government are being murdered or threatened with violence. I am certain you agree with me that Congress cannot be in a position where, through its actions, foreign governments are provided the means to intimidate citizens of the United States from exercising their Constitutionally protected rights regarding free speech.

As such, I respectfully request that each of you investigate what role, if any, funds authorized by you under Public Law 117-128, have been used to underwrite the actions of the Ukrainian Center for Countering Disinformation, and more specifically, if any funds appropriated under Public Law 117-128 have been used to pay the salaries of Ukrainian civil servants employed by the Ukrainian Center for Countering Disinformation involved in the preparation and dissemination of this so-called “blacklist”.

Under Section 507(d) of Public Law 117-128, Congress directs that “[t]he Secretary of State or the Administrator of the United States Agency for International Development, as appropriate, shall report to the appropriate congressional committees on the uses of any funds provided for direct financial support to the Government of Ukraine pursuant to subsection (a) and the results achieved, not later than 90 days after the date of enactment of this Act and every 90 days thereafter until September 30, 2025,” and that such a report “shall also include the metrics established to measure such results.”

I request that each of you become personally involved in preparing the appropriate questions to be asked of either the Secretary of State or the Administrator of USAID when they next appear before Congress to carry out their mandated reports regarding the use of funds provided for the direct financial support of the Government of Ukraine. The specific metric of interest here is whether any of these funds were used to pay the salaries of civil servants employed by the Ukrainian Center for Countering Disinformation involved in the preparation and dissemination of the aforementioned “blacklist”.

If funds were, in fact, used in this manner, I would respectfully request that you, in your status as my elected representatives to the United States Congress, take the appropriate action necessary to ensure that funds appropriated by the United States Congress are not used to suppress the free speech rights afforded to citizens of the United States, including myself, by the First Amendment of the United States Constitution. Moreover, I would insist that you take the appropriate action to guarantee that the Government of Ukraine immediately cease and desist in all activity designed to threaten and intimidate citizens of the United States. You are duty bound to protect the interests of the United States and its citizens rather than facilitate the actions of a foreign power that are, by design, intended to accomplish just the opposite.

Congress cannot be allowed to bypass Constitutionally imposed constraints on its actions by allowing a foreign government to do that which would not be permitted here in the United States. By paying the salaries of the civil servants employed by the Ukrainian Center for Countering Disinformation, who have prepared and disseminated the so-called “blacklist”, you and your fellow Senators and Representatives appear to be doing just that—allowing the Government of Ukraine to suppress the right of free speech guaranteed to United States citizens under the Constitution.

I look forward to hearing back from each of you as to how you propose to proceed in this matter.

Sincerely,

Scott Ritter

July 28, 2022 Posted by | Civil Liberties, Full Spectrum Dominance | , , | 1 Comment

FBI manipulating domestic terror stats – whistleblowers

Samizdat | July 28, 2022

The FBI is instructing its agents to reclassify cases as ‘domestic violent extremism’, Republican Representative Jim Jordan has claimed, citing agency whistleblowers. Jordan argued that the FBI may be inflating the statistics to satisfy the Biden administration’s crackdown on the supposed threat of homegrown terror.

“From recent protected disclosures, we have learned that FBI officials are pressuring agents to reclassify cases as ‘domestic violent extremism’ even if the cases do not meet the criteria for such a classification,” Jordan wrote in a letter to FBI Director Christopher Wray on Wednesday.

“Given the narrative pushed by the Biden administration that domestic violent extremism is the ‘greatest threat’ facing our country, the revelation that the FBI may be artificially padding domestic terrorism data is scandalous,” Jordan continued.

In the days after he took office in January 2021, Biden repeatedly talked up the threat of “domestic terrorism” in the US, describing the pro-Trump riot on Capitol Hill earlier that month as a prime example of this threat. He followed this rhetoric with a domestic terrorism strategy that increased funding to the Department of Homeland Security and Justice Department, while the former agency issued a memo classifying a broad range of dissidents and criminals – from racial extremists to animal rights activists and all others with “personal grievances and beliefs with political bias” – as domestic violent extremists.

This crackdown was necessary, Wray told Congress last summer, stating in June that the FBI had a “very, very active domestic terrorism investigation program,” and that it had “doubled the amount of domestic terrorism investigations.” Attorney General Merrick Garland cited this apparent doubling of investigations as proof that domestic extremism, particularly that involving white supremacists, was the “most lethal” threat facing the US at the time.

However, whistleblower testimony indicates “that the Biden administration’s narrative may be misleading,” Jordan, who is the ranking member of the House Judiciary Committee, wrote to Wray.

“One whistleblower explained that because agents are not finding enough DVE [domestic violent extremism] cases, they are encouraged and incentivized to reclassify cases as DVE cases even though there is minimal, circumstantial evidence to support the reclassification,” Jordan continued, adding that the agent in charge of one field office offered awards and promotions to subordinates who could reclassify the most cases as domestic extremism.

“This information … reinforces our concerns regarding the FBI’s politicization under your leadership,” Jordan told Wray. Citing an alleged “purge” of FBI employees with conservative views, the Ohio Republican argued that the FBI seems “more focused on classifying investigations to meet a woke left-wing agenda” than addressing his committee’s concerns.

As of Thursday afternoon, the FBI has not publicly addressed Jordan’s allegations.

July 28, 2022 Posted by | Civil Liberties, Deception, False Flag Terrorism | , , , | Leave a comment

“I’ve Delivered”: New Disclosures Demolish President Biden’s Denials on Hunter Dealings

By Jonathan Turley | July 28, 2022

New disclosures are demolishing the continued denials of President Biden that he had no knowledge and nothing to do with his son’s business interests. The emails (reviewed by Fox and The Daily Mail ) include exchanges with at least 14 of Hunter Biden’s business associates while Joe Biden was vice president. They cast further doubt on the president’s repeated claims that he had no knowledge of his son’s foreign business dealings.  In one almost plaintive email, Hunter actually complains to an associate that he had delivered on everything that was demanded of him in getting access to his father and the White House.

President Biden and the White House continue to repeat his denial from the campaign trial in 2019: “I have never spoken to my son about his overseas business dealings.” These denials have continued even after an audiotape surfaced showing President Biden leaving a message for Hunter specifically discussing coverage of those dealings.

Some of us have written for two years that Biden’s denial of knowledge is patently false. Indeed, it is baffling how Attorney General Garland can ignore the myriad of references to Joe Biden in refusing to appoint a special counsel.

There are emails of Ukrainian and other foreign clients thanking Hunter Biden for arranging meetings with his father. There are photos from dinners and meetings that tie President Biden to these figures, including a 2015 dinner with a group of Hunter Biden’s Russian and Kazakh clients.

People apparently were told to avoid directly referring to President Biden. In one email, Tony Bobulinski, then a business partner of Hunter’s, was instructed by Biden associate James Gilliar not to speak of the former veep’s connection to any transactions: “Don’t mention Joe being involved, it’s only when u [sic] are face to face, I know u [sic] know that but they are paranoid.”

Instead, the emails apparently refer to President Biden with code names such as “Celtic” or “the big guy.” In one, “the big guy” is discussed as possibly receiving a 10 percent cut on a deal with a Chinese energy firm; other emails reportedly refer to Hunter Biden paying portions of his father’s expenses and taxes.

The new disclosures only add details to the the extent of his knowledge and involvement. It appears that Biden met with at least 14 of Hunter’s business associates from the U.S., Mexico, Ukraine, China and Kazakhstan over the course of his vice presidency. That includes Hunter’s Mexican business associates, Miguel Aleman Velasco and Miguel Aleman Magnani who visited the West Wing on Feb. 26, 2014, and Joe was later photographed with Hunter giving Velasco and Magnani a tour of the White House Brady Press Briefing room.

Hunter is clearly eager to get photos as a deliverable for the visits. In one email in April 2014 to David Lienemann, Biden’s official photographer, Hunter asks “Do you have pictures from the lunch I had in dad’s office (I think on 2/26) with Miguel Alleman [sic] Sr. And Jr. And Jeff Cooper? If so let me know and I can send someone to pick them up. Thanks. How was Kiev?”

Other emails show Hunter using trips with his Dad to arrange meetings with business associates like Magnani. Indeed, in one exchange with Magnani, Hunter complains that he is not getting responses on his business dealings, objecting

“I have brought every single person you have ever asked me to bring to the F’ing White House and the Vice President’s house and the inauguration and then you go completely silent,. I don’t know what it is that I did but I’d like to know why I’ve delivered on every single thing you’ve ever asked – and you make me feel like I’ve done something to offend you.”

The cringeworthy email only adds to the embarrassment not of Hunter Biden but Merrick Garland who continues to refuse the obvious need for a special counsel. Indeed, the public could raise the objection raised by Hunter: what does it take?

July 28, 2022 Posted by | Corruption, Deception | , | 1 Comment

Recent warming isn’t unusual, temperature spikes within decades have occurred regularly over the last 150 million years

BY CHRIS MORRISON | THE DAILY SCEPTIC | JULY 28, 2022

Remarkable new scientific evidence has been published that suggests abrupt rises in temperature have been a feature of global climate change going back to the iceless Jurassic period over 150 million years ago. These warming events, in which the temperature rose many degrees centigrade within decades or less, were thought to be a feature of the last ice age up to 100,000 years ago and confined to Greenland and the North Atlantic. This dramatic new evidence suggests they were a feature across the globe going back millions of years.

The findings will give fresh insight into the highly politicised debate around climate science and Net Zero. It is constantly argued that the recent small rise in global temperature, which started over 200 years ago, is unprecedented, and is caused by humans burning fossil fuel. Far from being unprecedented, it seems similar changes in temperature over comparable, and often shorter, time periods were ubiquitous across paleoclimatic history stretching back to the Jurassic era.

A group of French scientists led by Slah Boulila from the Sorbonne carried out extensive research into what are known as Dansgaard-Oeschger (DO) events. These events, named after two paleoclimatologists, track 1,500 year temperature cycles when large rises suddenly occurred followed by a reversion to ice age conditions. The scientists noted warming up to 15°C within a few decades, “pointing to abrupt and severe changes in Earth’s past climate”. Scientists and green activists seeking to downplay the significance of large changes in the paleoclimatic record have suggested that oscillations of northern hemisphere ice sheets and surrounding waters played a part.

But the French scientists now say that paleoclimatic studies have shown that the 1,500-year climate cycle is no longer restricted to the North Atlantic Ocean of the last glacial period. “The 1,500-year cycle is documented in both hemispheres, in other oceans and in continents, such as in lake and river deposits, in pollen fossils, in stalagmite proxy records, and in loess-paleosol deposits,” they add. In conclusion, the scientists note that the analysed paleoclimate records of the late Jurassic “supports the global nature of DO-like event, and in particular that their potential primary cause is independent of ice sheet dynamics”.

Of course, the inconvenient fact that the planet has seen countless significant temperature rises in the past is not unknown. Back in 1999, before global climate hysteria got into its full stride, geographer Mark Maslin from Imperial College co-wrote a paper on “sudden climate transitions” in which he stated: “All the evidence indicates that most long-term climate change occurs in sudden jumps rather than incremental change.” He went on to add that some, and possibly most, large climate changes involving movements of several degrees occurred at most on a timescale of a few centuries, sometimes decades, “and perhaps even a few years”.

These days Maslin is Professor of Earth Systems Science at the politically-named UCL Anthropocene, and tweeting that “Earth is already becoming unliveable”. A frequent guest on BBC programmes, Maslin has explained that the Anthropocene began with European colonisation and mass slavery. The origins of racism and climate emergency “share common causes”. Climate change politics helps build “a new political (and socio economic) system”. In 2018, he was one of a number of eco-activists who signed a letter to the Guardian saying they would no longer “lend their credibility” by debating climate change scepticism.

It would seem that the record of large – often startlingly large – rises in past temperature needs to be downplayed if the command-and-control Net Zero project is to be promoted. Removing fossil fuel from modern lifestyles within less than 30 years demands enormous economic and societal sacrifices, particularly from poorer members of society and across the developing world. It can only be done if enough people and populations believe there is an existential threat to the planet from recent warming and model-projected future warming.

Meanwhile, science continues to produce evidence of major temperature changes in the past. Two recent studies suggesting much higher temperatures are noted by the No Tricks Zone climate science site. A new study is said to have shown that it was warm enough 8,000 to 5,000 years ago for the plant Ceratopteris to have grown at 40°N in northern China. These days, the plant’s limit is 34°N, suggesting that winter temperatures in the past needed to be 7.7°C higher than today. Another warmth threshold species study argues that the Arctic Svalbard needed to have been 6°C warmer than today during the early Holocene. This is because 9,000 years ago, molluscs survived 1,000km north of where they are currently found.

Further details on the work undertaken by the Boulila team, including its scientific methodology, can be accessed here. More details about the two papers can be found on the No Tricks Zone.  And further reporting on past global temperature changes by the Daily Sceptic can be found here.

July 28, 2022 Posted by | Malthusian Ideology, Phony Scarcity, Science and Pseudo-Science, Timeless or most popular | 1 Comment

US Wants to Increase RT, Sputnik Moderation Due to Their Objectivity – Russian Embassy

Samizdat – 28.07.2022

US senators are calling for increased moderation of Spanish-language RT and Sputnik, as they are dissatisfied with the interest of Latin Americans in objective coverage of events, the Russian Embassy in the United States said in a statement.

On Wednesday, US Senate Foreign Relations Committee Chairman Robert Menendez, Senators Bill Cassidy and Tim Kaine called on the CEOs of Meta (banned as an extremist organization in Russia), Twitter and Telegram to better moderate content distributed by Spanish-language versions of RT and Sputnik. The senators said they were concerned by reports that the reach of such media outlets has increased amid the situation in Ukraine.

“Parliamentarians, in the typical manner, once again turn everything upside down, seeing in the work of our news agencies attempts to “spread disinformation”, “undermine democracy” and “sow chaos” in the Western Hemisphere. The reason for such accusations is dissatisfaction with the interest of the Latin American public in objective coverage of events in Russia and the world,” the Russian Embassy said on Telegram.

“Washington’s ruling circles are clearly annoyed that, thanks to high-quality and timely news content, citizens of the countries of the region make a choice in favor of Russia Today and Sputnik, and not US-controlled media,” it said.

July 28, 2022 Posted by | Full Spectrum Dominance | , , | 1 Comment

Remote learning was built to fail School shutdowns were no innocent mistake

By Will Collins | UnHerd | July 27, 2022

Imagine that it’s September 2020 and you’re teaching at a middle school that has gone online. Miraculously, all of your students have functioning laptops and can join class remotely. You’ve checked your equipment with a colleague, who assures you that the audio feed is clean and the lighting in your apartment does not make you appear demonically possessed. You have a slideshow and a digital worksheet ready to go on the flora and fauna of different climate zones.

You start the lesson by marking attendance. This process, which usually takes a few seconds, now lasts five minutes because you have to remind almost every student to turn on their cameras. Most will turn them back off after you share your screen because they’ve realized you can’t navigate a slideshow and monitor 17 different video feeds simultaneously. You pause after slide three to ask what you think is a basic question about the material, just to make sure everyone is paying attention. You are greeted by absolute silence. You call on one student by name, but someone else says she’s in the bathroom. Another student is having problems with his wifi. A third’s microphone doesn’t work (it never works). It’s 15 minutes into the lesson and you’ve barely covered three slides. The students have six more online classes to sit through before the school day ends.

Even at the beginning of the pandemic, it was obvious that remote learning was uniquely ill-suited for children and teenagers, who are easily distracted, prone to online mischief, and unlikely to pay attention to academic material from their living rooms. Even adults struggle with corporate conference calls and lengthy Zoom meetings. Instead of acknowledging this reality and keeping students in class, American public schools embarked on a disastrous experiment in remote learning that persisted in many places even after the vaccine rollout.

As the consequences of school shutdowns become obvious and undeniable, a new media narrative has emerged. Pandemic-era learning loss was a tragic but unforeseen consequence of an unprecedented public health crisis. Shutting down schools, says The Economist, “was worse than almost anyone expected.” In an otherwise sobering article on the collapse of public education in the pandemic era, The Atlantic tells us that learning loss “is far greater than most educators and parents seem to realize.”

In truth, these problems were completely predictable. Indeed, they were acknowledged from the very beginning of Covid, albeit sotto voce. Many studies have examined the disproportionate impact of school closures on poor and minority students. An equally telling but under-discussed fact is that even at the height of the pandemic, when alarmists were calling for total school closures and blithely assuring skeptics that kids were “resilient,” students from affluent families were usually able to stay in school.

In California, Governor Gavin Newsom was widely criticized for a night out at an upscale restaurant while most of the state remained under lockdown. A more galling example of official hypocrisy is his approach to education. After California imposed public school shutdowns, Newsom’s children continued to attend in-person classes at a local private school. Affluent and well-connected families across the country made similar decisions. As public schools shut down, private schools remained open and enrollment surged. Those who could afford to send their kids to private school clearly understood the value of in-person instruction, even if they were reluctant to acknowledge this publicly.

It is all but forgotten now, but at the height of the pandemic, school shutdown advocates embarked on a clumsy media campaign against the very idea of learning loss. The New York Times credulously quoted an anti-testing activist (no ulterior motives there!) in a long, chin-scratching meditation on the case against measuring pandemic learning shortfalls. Punditsunion officialseducation experts, and teacher organizations cautioned against use of the term “learning loss” because it was unduly pejorative. In retrospect, the motive behind these linguistic gymnastics is obvious. School shutdown supporters knew their policy would yield disastrous results and wanted to do everything possible to obscure that fact.

The pandemic era lowering of standards reached its sad culmination last summer with Oregon’s decision to waive basic math and reading requirements for high school graduation. You do not need to be an advocate of relentless, No Child Left Behind-style testing to admit that schools need benchmarks to ensure they’re actually teaching something. And just about every benchmark available shows that students have suffered dramatic educational setbacks from remote schooling.

Beyond the usual academic indicators, public schools are now contending with chronic absenteeism, a youth mental health crisis, and a wave of disciplinary problems. Missing students and behavioral outbursts occur because kids who have lost a year or more of school are unaccustomed to regularly attending classes, sitting still, and paying attention. The study habits of an entire generation of students have atrophied online, a loss that will persist for the rest of their academic careers and beyond. Meanwhile, kids deprived of normal social interactions naturally suffer from feelings of isolation, alienation, and loneliness. None of these findings should come as a surprise.

The most striking thing about remote learning in the United States is how lengthy American school closures were compared to peer nations. Progressive wonks and education activists are usually enthusiastic boosters of European practices. When Covid hit, they became strangely incurious about foreign schools. Social democratic Sweden kept its schools open for almost the entire pandemic. Other European countries confined their shutdowns to the viral winter months. None of these schools experienced mass student death or out-of-control community spread. Abbreviated school closures in Eastern European countries like Hungary also disprove the notion that American schools lacked the financial resources to reopen safely.

Full article

July 28, 2022 Posted by | Science and Pseudo-Science, Timeless or most popular | | Leave a comment

BOOSTED, SICK & GETTING SICKER

The Highwire with Del Bigtree | July 22, 2022

Despite his triple vaccination status, Biden has tested positive for Covid-19. Watch as we revisit Del’s now famous “football analogy,” illustrating “original antigenic sin,” and why the highly vaccinated might be in big trouble.

THE BLOODY TRUTH

Neither government regulatory agencies, nor vaccine makers, cared to monitor what the experimental Covid jabs did to women’s cycles. After widespread alarm, the menstruation issues have turned out to be real, and lacking any long-term studies on fertility.

July 28, 2022 Posted by | Deception, Science and Pseudo-Science, Timeless or most popular, Video | , | Leave a comment