Aletho News


Confessions of a reformed Remainer

By John Roberts | TCW Defending Freedom | September 13, 2022

There have been calls for those who championed lockdown to apologise or at least admit they were wrong – to accept the overwhelming evidence that the imprisonment of pretty much the entire population did far more harm than good. With few exceptions that hasn’t happened.

Well, I have a confession to make. I was a committed Europhile. My name is John and I loved the EU. I voted Remain in the referendum and was upset and dismayed when the result came through. Actually I was beside myself. I really could not understand how so many people could be antagonistic to something that I thought was such a force for good.

Surely, I reasoned, a closer union of European peoples would help change our centuries-long habit of killing each other. I have always enjoyed travelling around Europe, experiencing the various cultures and at the same time been proud of our common European heritage. To be able to explore in this way with relatively little bureaucracy, and perhaps eventually without currency exchanges, was to my mind wonderful. I also thought that Britain’s membership would be a bulwark to French and German domination, which some of the smaller EU countries hoped would be the case. Then there was the frequent banner-waving for freedom, democracy and human rights. What’s that you say? How could I have been so naive? Perhaps you might say something less polite. Anyway, I’m not going to argue; maybe I was too idealistic. I knew there was corruption and stupidity but there is in most governments and although I didn’t think the EU was benign I didn’t think it was evil either. Now I delight when I hear of the EU in difficulty, not because I wish ill on the people but because of the discomfort it would cause the globalist bureaucrats. I would be happy for the Union to break up.

What changed me? The last two and half years. Through the so-called pandemic nearly all countries have become increasingly authoritarian, ours included. Most countries in the EU took the biscuit with longer and stricter lockdowns and draconian vaccine mandates. Piers Morgan may have called for the unvaccinated to be made to suffer but it never really happened here except perhaps through the actions of our ‘friends’ and family members and, of course, care workers in England who were sacked for not taking the jab, too low on the social scale to worry about.

In countries such as Italy, France, Germany and others the vaccine mandates were forced through with fascistic brutality, applauded and encouraged by the EU. Travel and restaurant bans were commonplace; an apartheid reminiscent of Germany in the late 1930s. Many states in Europe suffered greatly from one kind of dictatorship or another in the last century so you would have thought that their leaders might have found imposing vaccine mandates on their populations difficult – but not so. Despite some ministers and officials here, drunk on dictatorial power, wanting to go full-on China, they never quite managed it. What happened here was bad enough but never as bad as much of Europe.

I would like to say that the marches, the resistance that rose through the internet and the thousands of nurses and other health professionals who refused to be intimidated, albeit too late to stop the care workers from being sacked, were the reasons for this, but I think there is more to it. There were plenty of examples of resistance and indeed solidarity between the vaxxed and unvaxxed in EU countries but the jackboots marched onward. There has now been a move away from the health apartheid but that’s because in the real world the vaccines have been shown to be useless at preventing spread; the majority of the vaccinated know this because they and their friends and families have caught the virus, sometimes more than once. In such circumstances even avid watchers of mainstream propaganda will spot the insanity of compulsory vaccination.

The last couple of years have shown that the EU is a piece of the globalist jigsaw puzzle and a large one at that, and it hasn’t just been hijacked as some countries have – its founders were going in that direction right from the start. It is obvious to me that the orchestrated pandemic with its lockdowns and vaccine mandates was part of that age-old weapon of tyrants: fear. Fear so that we will ask the globalist elites to protect us from disease and climate change. In return we have only to give up our culture, our national sovereignty and eventually our families. This is how I see the EU now; I was late coming to the party.

My estrangement from the EU led to a growing warmth towards my country. For all its faults and frustrations I believe the ideals of liberty are more deeply ingrained here than in many places. I wonder if those of our politicians who are closet tyrants realised they couldn’t impose an EU-style authoritarianism on us. I find it ironic that the French national motto is: ‘Liberty, Equality, Fraternity’. We don’t have a national motto; we have the monarch’s ‘Dieu et Mon Droit’: My God and my Right. Nothing about liberty there or equality either, decidedly autocratic, yet I would suggest that the British have been much less inclined to accept dictatorial government than the French. We are known to be a polite and placid people and we have not had the violent revolutions that our continental neighbours have suffered. We like order but not perhaps in the way the Germans do, not forced on to us from above but that which grew over the centuries from the ordinary people.

September 14, 2022 Posted by | Civil Liberties | , , , , | Leave a comment

Denmark ends COVID jab for people under 50

By Rachel Emmanuel | The Counter Signal | September 14, 2022

Denmark has ended the COVID-19 vaccine for most people under 50, the Danish Health Authority said yesterday.

Denmark had already discontinued COVID-19 shots for nearly everyone under 18.

According to health officials, the purpose of vaccines is to prevent severe illness, hospitalization and death.

“Therefore, people at the highest risk of of becoming severely ill will be offered booster vaccination,” the Danish Health Authority says.

“The purpose of vaccination is not to prevent infection with covid-19, and people under 50 are therefore currently not being offered booster vaccination.”

The statement goes on to say that people under 50 are generally not at high risk of becoming severely ill from COVID.

“In addition, younger people aged under 50 are well protected against becoming severely ill from covid-19, as a very large number of them have already been vaccinated and have previously been infected with covid-19, and there is consequently good immunity among this

Under the new regulations, Danes under 50 will only be inoculated if they at high risk of becoming severely ill from COVID-19. This includes those with an impaired immune system, people working in healthcare and those working with seniors.

The ban comes even while Denmark expects “a large wave of [Covid] infection” in the next few months, according to independent journalist Alex Berenson.

Berenson reports that Denmark did not explicitly say the risks of mRNA jabs now outweigh their benefits for healthy people under 50, but that view “is implicit in the announcement.”

“In other words, the health authority is not stopping shots because Covid has ended. It now believes most people are better off getting the coronavirus than taking more mRNA,” he wrote.

The announcement comes as other countries make similar steps to limit COVID-19 vaccine access.

The UK has banned doctors from giving the COVID-19 vaccine to children under 12, saying kids don’t need it and they likely already have natural immunity.

The UK government also released a report stating that pregnant and breastfeeding women should under no circumstance get the Pfizer COVID vaccine due to a lack of trial data on the vaccine’s effect on reproductive health.

In Canada, health authorities continue to encourage parents to vaccinate their babies and kids, even while the former Chair of National Advisory Committee on Immunization (NACI) admitted last month that COVID is less deadly to kids than the flu.

Prime Minister Justin Trudeau recently said he might impose more COVID restrictions this winter unless 80-90% of the population gets “up-to-date” vaccinations.

To be fully vaccinated in Canada previously meant having two doses of a Health Canada-approved vaccine. The Canadian federal government is now applying pressure for citizens to get regular COVID-19 boosters.

In September, NACI announced that Canadians might consider getting a vaccine every 90 days.

September 14, 2022 Posted by | Aletho News | , , , , | 1 Comment

The elite are building Megalopolis, where the plebs will eat insects

By Lucy Wyatt | TCW Defending Freedom | September 14, 2022

We are at war in Europe. But not with Russia. The enemy does not have boots on the ground, tanks, machine guns or bombs; we cannot see it.

It is a devious, insidious many-headed hydra shaping our lives, aided by those who are meant to represent us.  A critical battle line has opened up against this amorphous enemy in the heart of Europe. In the Netherlands.

Brave Dutch farmers have mobilised their tractors, their slurry tankers and their bales of straw; they have taken to the streets to protest, as we first reported here and they have not let up.

After a tumultuous summer of protests by farmers over so called ‘pollution’ regulations – the Dutch government’s edict that will require farmers to curb their nitrogen emissions by up to 70 per cent in the next eight years – the Dutch agriculture minister, Henk Staghouwer, has resigned after only nine months in office telling reporters that he wasn’t the right person for the job. Indeed.

We would do well to pay attention. They are protesting on our behalf. They are taking on what’s been aptly described as ‘a corporatised “sustainability” agenda crafted by a billionaire-backed “green” elite with no popular constituency’.

Invisible institutions such as the World Economic Forum, the Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation, the Rockefeller Foundation, as well as a bevy of transnational corporations, are key ‘stakeholders’ in this closely-knit network. These are the unelected figures who are influencing government policy in supposedly sovereign states across the globe.

The Dutch government plans to spend 25billion euros expropriating 11,200 farms – allegedly to cut nitrogen emissions in half by 2030. This will mean the loss of 20 per cent of farms, while another 33 per cent will be forced to scale back and reduce livestock.

The madness of these cuts comes at a time of global food and fertiliser shortages, when Holland is the second-largest food exporter after the US. It now risks following Sri Lanka in becoming a major importer as opposed to an exporter of food.

As well as the timing, what makes Dutch farmers so suspicious is that the curb on nitrogen emissions falls disproportionately on farming, when industry and transport are also major polluters.  There is however a logic to this if the specific motive for this appropriation of their land and livelihood is the Tristatecity.

The Tristatecity is a ‘smart city’ project which began to emerge as a concept in 2015. It is the vision of Peter Savelberg, a Dutch consultant, to create a giant megalopolis from Holland through Belgium to the Ruhr in Germany, incorporating 30million to 45million people.

How in this carbon-conscious age could such a project have survived the eco piety of the environment zealots? It is hardly obvious how building skyscrapers and covering large areas in concrete can be more sustainable than farmland, but the project boasts that it supports all of the United Nations  sustainability goals.

Of course it does – on paper. It is also keen to promote agritech, centred on the region of Brabant, which includes vertical farming (eg hydroponics). It is possibly no coincidence that, according to the Financial Times, the Belgian government has also begun buying up farmland, allegedly to avoid the Dutch ‘crisis’. In other words, the Tristatecity is a classic World Economic Forum ‘fourth Industrial Revolution’ concept.

Peter Savelberg is backed by the Dutch employers’ organisation VNO-NCW, pension funds and property developers. They believe that Tristatecity, with its 45million inhabitants, would be able to better compete for investment and talent with other global megacities, particularly those in China. And so, inevitably, the Tristatecity needs Dutch farmland for housing.

Meanwhile, the inhabitants of the Tristatecity will presumably live on bugs – because there would be less farmland to produce food for them. Hence the need for vertical farming. There would be little other industry for them to work in, because the fossil fuels needed for industry to function are drying up.

Germany is already experiencing signs of de-industrialisation as Russian gas disappears and the dried-up Rhine ironically prevents the movement of coal. Zero carbon is becoming a reality.

Despite a growing pushback against the UN’s ‘sustainable development’ programme Agenda 2030, against WEF and the Great Reset, the Dutch government, among others spurred on perhaps by the recent UN High-Level Forum in which the Netherlands participated this summer, has resorted to using so-called ‘climate change’ and ‘nature protection’ virtue-signalling as the devious and specious excuse for acquiring the land needed to implement its goals.

It is noticeable that the marketing hype around Tristatecity itself has gone quiet (only a few hundred follow its Facebook page), and the project has felt the need to issue a public statement claiming that it has no connection with nitrogen reduction programmes.

Here in the UK, we may have avoided the fate of the Dutch farmers for the time being, although our government’s financial incentive for farmers to leave their farms was on offer up till August 11. There is still a need for vigilance.

While Welsh schools are encouraging children to eat bugs, France has become the innovation nation for insect production and hosts the world’s largest insect farms.

A start-up called Ynsect has raised 224million dollars from investors – including Hollywood star Robert Downey Junior’s FootPrint Coalition – to build its second insect farm in Amiens in northern France.

The company breeds mealworms that produce proteins for livestock, pet food and fertilisers. The ‘40-metre tall plant spread over 40,000 square metres’ was promised by CEO and co-founder Antoine Hubert to be ‘the highest vertical farm in the world and the first carbon-negative vertical farm in the world’.

We are still under attack from the many-headed hydra in other ways.  Gaslighting takes many forms. One recent example was the granting of the top prize at the Chelsea Flower Show to a garden whose central feature was beaver-chewed wood and not flowers – as though untouched nature trumped cultivation and creation.

In June, we only narrowly missed the loss of 700,000 acres of farmland when the budget for ‘landscape recovery’ (aka ‘rewilding’) was slashed from £800million to £50million.

This war is not over and we should support our European allies as we did in the Second World War.

Recommended viewing is Jordan Peterson’s apocalyptic warning on what ‘sustainability’ really means and Michael Yon’s programme from July, when he was embedded with the Dutch farmers. 

Their fight is our fight. ‘Useless eaters’ unite. Pitchforks at the ready.

September 14, 2022 Posted by | Civil Liberties, Malthusian Ideology, Phony Scarcity | , , | 4 Comments

Exposed: The ‘97% of scientists agree with manmade global warming’ lie

By David Craig | TCW Defending Freedom | September 12, 2022

Our government is imposing draconian limitations on our lifestyles, our economy and our finances to save the planet from supposed catastrophic anthropogenic global warming (CAGW), now renamed ‘climate change’.  Probably one of the most repeated arguments you’ll hear in support of the need to achieve ‘net zero’ is that ’97 per cent of scientists agree CAGW is happening’.

President Obama is just one of many who have made this claim: ‘Ninety-seven per cent of scientists agree: climate change is real, man-made and dangerous.’

So did President Biden’s Special Presidential Envoy for Climate, John Kerry, when he warned of the ‘crippling consequences’ of climate change and said: ‘Ninety-seven per cent of the world’s scientists tell us this is urgent.’

Yet, in spite of the damaging effects reaching ‘net zero’ will have on Western economies, not a single politician or mainstream journalist seems to have made the effort to find out where this ‘97 per cent’ figure came from and how accurate it is.

The main author of the paper which came up with the figure was John Cook, an Australian former web programmer and blogger who later gained a PhD in philosophy at the University of Western Australia and founded what could be seen as a climate alarmist website.

He assembled a group of volunteers recruited via the website as part of a ‘citizen science’ project and tasked them with examining the abstracts of 11,944 climate papers from 1991-2011 matching the topics ‘global climate change’ or ‘global warming’. Note that the volunteers didn’t speak to any scientists and didn’t read the scientific papers. They just looked at the abstracts – a summary paragraph or two. The volunteers classified the abstracts into one of seven categories according to their opinions of Anthropogenic Global Warming (AGW):

1.      Explicit endorsement of AGW with quantification

2.      Explicit endorsement of AGW without quantification

3.      Implicit endorsement of AGW

4.      No position or Uncertain

5.      Implicit rejection of AGW

6.      Explicit rejection of AGW without quantification

7.      Explicit rejection of AGW with quantification

The reviewers then ‘simplified’ results into four main categories as follows:

Endorse AGW               3,896                   32.6 per cent of abstracts

No AGW position         7,930                   66.4 per cent of abstracts

Reject AGW                  78                         0.7 per cent of abstracts

Uncertain on AGW      40                         0.3 per cent of abstracts

This gave 32.6 per cent of abstracts which the reviewers concluded endorsed AGW.

Now comes the clever bit. Instead of admitting that just 32.6 per cent of papers (actually just abstracts of papers) endorsed AGW, the group removed the 7,930 abstracts which didn’t take a position on AGW. That left just 4,014 abstracts of which 3,896 (97 per cent) supposedly ‘endorsed’ AGW.

This is like doing a survey of the voting intentions of 1,000 people. You find that 90 say they’ll vote Labour, 10 say they’ll vote Conservative and the remaining 900 are undecided. You eliminate the 900 undecideds and claim that 90 per cent of voters support Labour and just 10 per cent of voters will vote Conservative. This is, of course, complete statistical nonsense as the real percentage of the sampled 1,000 voters who have said they will vote Labour is 9 per cent, not 90 per cent.

That’s not the end of the magic employed to reach that wondrous 97 per cent. The reviewers lumped together three categories of abstracts – ‘explicit endorsement with quantification’, ‘explicit endorsement without quantification’ and ‘implicit endorsement’. (Implicit endorsement means that the reviewer felt that the paper endorsed the AGW theory even though the paper didn’t do so explicitly).

In the paper claiming 97 per cent support for AGW, the reviewers don’t tell us how many papers fitted into each of these three categories, but the survey’s own database shows that of the 3,896 abstracts which supposedly ‘endorsed’ AGW, just 64 were in the ‘explicit endorsement with quantification’ category; 922 were in the ‘explicit endorsement without quantification’ and the vast majority – 2,910 out of 3,896 – were in the ‘implicit endorsement of AGW’ category.

Thus only 986 of 11,944 – that’s just 8.2 per cent – of abstracts explicitly said they agreed with the theory of man-made global warming.

To summarise, this ‘97 per cent of scientists’ claim was based on the work of 11 to 12 volunteers, whose scientific credentials have not (as far as I know) been released and all of whom were probably firm AGW believers. Each looked at around 1,000, often quite obscure, scientific abstracts and from these documents decided whether the scientific papers (which they hadn’t read) supported the AGW theory. To claim such an approach is statistically valid is beyond farcical. To call the ‘97 per cent of scientists endorse AGW’ result ‘garbage’ could be seen as insulting to garbage.

Given the damage ‘net zero’ will do to our economies and our lives, it is incredible that not a single politician, mainstream journalist or editor seems to have had the ability or the inclination to expose the dubious origins of the ubiquitous ‘97 per cent of scientists endorse AGW’ claim.

September 14, 2022 Posted by | Deception, Science and Pseudo-Science, Timeless or most popular | | 2 Comments

Climate Emergency Not Supported by Data, Say Four Leading Italian Scientists


Four leading Italian scientists have undertaken a major review of historical climate trends and concluded that a ‘climate emergency’ is not supported by the data. Reviewing data from a wide range of weather phenomena, they say the climate crisis that many say we are currently experiencing “is not evident yet”. The scientists suggest that rather than burdening our children with the anxiety of a climate emergency, we should allow them to face various problems such as energy, food and health with a more “objective and constructive spirit” and not waste limited resources on “costly and ineffective solutions”.

During the course of their recent work, the scientists found that rainfall intensity and frequency was stationary in many parts of the world. Tropical hurricanes and cyclones showed little change over the long term, and the same is true of U.S. tornadoes. Other meteorological categories including natural disasters, floods, droughts and ecosystem productivity showed no “clear positive trend of extreme events”. Regarding ecosystems, the scientists noted a considerable “greening” of global plant biomass in recent decades caused by higher levels of carbon dioxide in the atmosphere. Satellite data show “greening” trends over most of the planet, increasing food yields and pushing back of deserts.

The four scientists are all highly qualified and include physics adjunct professor Gianluca Alimonti, agrometeorologist Luigi Mariani and physics professors Franco Prodi and Renato Angelo Ricci. The last two physicists are signatories to the rapidly growing “World Climate Declaration”. This petition states that there is no climate emergency and calls for climate science to be more scientific. It also calls for a freeing from the “naïve belief in immature climate models”. In future, it says, “climate research must give significantly more emphasis to empirical science”.

‘Extreme’ weather events attributed by climate models – somehow – to humans changing the climate, are now the main staple of the climate alarmist industry. As the Daily Sceptic reported on Monday, Sir David Attenborough used a U.K. Met Office model forecast in Frozen Planet II to claim that summer Arctic sea ice could all be gone within 12 years. But the likelihood of hardy swimming galas over the North Pole by 2035 seems somewhat remote, not least because Arctic sea ice has been growing in many summers since 2012. According to a recent report from the U.S.-based National Snow and Ice Data Center, at the end of August, “sea ice extent is likely to remain higher than in recent years”.

Hurricane and cyclones are favourite scares that are frequently drummed up by green alarmists. It is unsurprising why they focus on these storms, since the scientists note that historically around 60% of all economic damage caused by global disasters is the consequence of U.S. hurricanes. On May 27th, the Met Office predicted that the 2022 Atlantic hurricane season, which runs from June to November, would “most likely” be above average, with a “likelihood” of 18 named tropical storms including nine hurricanes and four major hurricanes. In fact, the current Atlantic hurricane season has had its slowest start for 30 years. At the end of August there have been no hurricanes, and only three named storms, none of which produced winds of 74mph or higher.

In fact there is plenty of evidence that hurricane and cyclone intensity and frequency has changed little over the recent historical record. “To date, global observations do not show any significant trends in both the number and the energy accumulated by hurricanes,” note the Italian scientists. The two graphs below demonstrate this.

The IPCC has reported that hurricanes have increased strongly in the North Atlantic since 1878, but the scientists note that observations were relatively low during the first decades of the 20th century. After adjusting for lack of observational capacities in the past, there is a nominal upward trend. This trend, they explain, “is not significantly distinguishable from zero”.

The scientists accept that there has been a recent increase in heatwaves, which they attribute to the 1°C rise in global temperatures, although they note global heatwave intensity trends “are not significant”. They also note an increase in global rainfall, although an increase in extreme precipitation is observed only in a limited number of weather stations. Corresponding evidence for increases in flooding remains elusive, they say, “and a long list of studies shows little or no evidence of increased flood magnitudes, with some studies finding more evidence of decreases than increases”. So far as drought is concerned, the scientists note the AR5 finding of the IPCC that “conclusions regarding global drought trends increasing since the 1970s are no longer supported”. Several studies are said to show no increase in the main indices regarding global droughts.

In fact, a slightly warmer and wetter planet and a little extra CO2 seem to have done wonders for global crop yields. For the period 1961-2019, maize, rice, soyabean and wheat global average yields are reported to have grown every year by 3.3%, 2.4%, 2.6% and 3.8% respectively.

Well-researched, fact-driven, credible scientific papers such as this are crucial in the battle to stop green activists and rentiers having a free run to catastrophise every bad weather event in the interest of promoting a command-and-control Net Zero agenda. Attempting to attribute single weather events to humans burning fossil fuels is the product of feverish imaginations and garbage in, garbage out climate models. Rational, evidence-based science should be promoted at every opportunity.

Chris Morrison is the Daily Sceptic’s Environment Editor.

September 14, 2022 Posted by | Malthusian Ideology, Phony Scarcity, Science and Pseudo-Science | Leave a comment

Free stuff from the Inflation “Reduction” Act discriminates against the poor!

By David Wojick | CFACT | September 8, 2022

In the name of “inflation reduction” Uncle Sam is giving away four and a half billion dollars worth of rebates on electrical appliances and related juicy stuff. Okay the Federal Government is not actually giving it away; they are just paying for it. The taxpayers are paying the multi-billion dollar bill.

What is truly ironic is that this Act discriminates heavily against the poor. Many relatively low income households are systematically excluded from the rebate program, while much wealthier households qualify simply because their neighbors make more money. I am not making this up.

First the basics. This is the “HIGH-EFFICIENCY ELECTRIC HOME REBATE PROGRAM” (all caps on the Act). Despite the name there is not much about energy efficiency in this. It is mostly about electrification of residential properties.

The rebates are huge, specifically either 100% or 50% of cost, up to $14,000. That’s right, the Feds will pay 100% in many cases, making the stuff free. The big difference between these two numbers is where the discrimination comes in, but first more basics.

Here is the official list of big tickets that are covered:

“(1) an electric heat pump water heater

(2) an electric heat pump for space heating and cooling

(3) an electric stove, cooktop, range, or oven

(4) an electric heat pump clothes dryer

(5) an electric load service center

(6) insulation

(7) air sealing and materials to improve ventilation

(8) electric wiring

Insulation and air sealing may improve efficiency but the rest is just electrification. To qualify, the new appliance must either replace a gas fired one, be a first time purchase or be part of new construction. Note that where new gas appliances are outlawed, which is increasingly the case, people are being paid handsomely for doing what they have to do anyway. Free riders get it free!

Who qualifies for these two rebate amounts is where the discrimination comes in. The formula is quite simple, as follows.

The rebate is 100% if the annual household income is less than 80 percent of the “area median income.”

The rebate is 50% if the annual household income is between 80 percent and 150% of the “area median income.”

I have quoted “area median income” because that is the kicker. Obviously poor areas have relatively low area median incomes while wealthier areas have higher ones, in some cases a lot higher. Much follows from this.

Here is a simple example that makes the point very clearly. We have two areas, one poorer and one wealthier. The poorer area has a median annual household income of $50,000. In some States two people working full time making minimum wage would exceed this, so it is very low. The wealthier area has a median annual household income of $100,000. (Truly wealthy areas may have incomes much larger than this, making the discrimination much worse.)

Who qualifies for the 100% rebates in the poorer area? Any household with income less than $40,000. But in the wealthier area folks making up to $80,000 qualify! People making that kind of money in the poorer area are disqualified just because of that poverty. The same is true for the 50% rebate.

In short, relative poverty disqualifies a lot of people from getting these fancy rebates. The richer the area the more money people can make and still qualify.

Local poverty disqualifies low income people. Surely this is wrong, in fact it is nuts.

My guess is this colossal blunder is because the law was written in a huge rush. Senate staffers were working around the clock to craft a compromise bill. The fact that different areas can have very different median household incomes did not occur to them.

Personally I think these rebates are a ridiculous waste of taxpayer money (especially in areas where gas appliances are prohibited by law). But if they are going to exist, then who qualifies should be the same for everybody. Disqualifying people for living in a poorer area is just wrong.

Congress should repeal or rewrite this nutty law.

David Wojick, Ph.D. is an independent analyst working at the intersection of science, technology and policy.

September 14, 2022 Posted by | Civil Liberties | | 1 Comment

European Leaders Cling to Green Fantasy as Citizens Suffer

By Vijay Jayaraj | RealClear Energy | September 07, 2022

There is being caught between a rock and a hard place, and then there’s Europe. The continent’s squeeze between a severe energy shortage and a policy of phasing out fossil fuels — the world’s most widely available energy source — got tighter Sept. 2 when Russia’s Gazprom stopped its natural gas supply to Europe through the Nord Stream 1 pipeline due to “oil leakage.”

Experiencing astronomical power prices and anticipating an energy-starved winter, citizens are saddled with their leaders’ pursuit of a green utopia that has denied them access to adequate supplies of coal, natural gas and oil. Consumers are left largely at the mercy of expensive and unreliable solar and wind power.

For many of us, Europe’s self-imposed disaster is a warning of what’s to come should our leaders insist on pursuing a carbon-free nirvana — an absurdity that is not even possible. However, for those faced with eye-popping price hikes, the situation is life altering!

In the UK, many small businesses have no choice but to shut down this winter. James Allcock of Beverley, England, says that the electricity prices for his tiny 22-seat restaurant has risen from 2,928 pounds a year to 22,516 pounds. “Unsure what to actually do next but as a business that cost would now be more than I pay in rent and more than I take some months,” he laments. “I simply don’t have the money for this.”

For slightly bigger businesses, the situation is even worse.  Premier Seafoods Ltd, award-winning fishmongers in Grimsby, England, tweeted, “I have two meters in my business. Jointly, currently, 21,000 pounds.  Quoted to go to a combined 91,000 pounds. What on earth do I do?”

Edwards of Conwy, awarded the Best UK Butcher (2014-15), says, “Last year I spent 129,000 pounds on energy. I received this quote yesterday for 782,011 pounds — 2,500 pounds a week to 15,000 pounds a week! Any suggestions on how I move forward.” A small fish and chip shop in Oswestry, Shropshire, must pay an energy bill that has increased from 9,000 to 35,000 pounds.

UK’s Federation of Small Businesses reports, “Nearly 15 percent of small- and medium-sized firms polled fear they may have to close or downsize as a direct result of the spiraling energy bills.”

In Germany, high energy prices have caused manufacturers to stop production. The country’s finance minister says that the trend in the manufacturing sector is “alarming.” And there are dozens of other EU countries where small business owners have expressed their helpless situation on Twitter.

 Even during this difficult situation, many so called experts seem to be out of touch with reality. Instead of seeking ways to improve energy production, they advise Europeans to reduce energy use. One expert says Europe must reduce energy demand — even as winter is approaching.

Last week, outgoing British Prime Minister Boris Johnson blamed previous governments for the crisis and lamented not having enough nuclear plants. However, like many EU leaders, he steered away from using coal to generate more electricity or increasing fracking to produce more domestic natural gas.

Since then, Liz Truss has been named to replace Mr. Johnson. She speaks of producing more energy while indicating support for the green’s net zero nonsense. Where this actually goes for the UK remains to be seen.

Nonetheless, for many Europeans the prescription for their pain is more pain: Reduced energy supplies, economic stagnation and cold homes.

Addressing the political nature of energy crisis, British journalist Julia Hartley-Brewer tweeted, “The fact that we’re talking about rationing energy, kids dying from the cold, thousands of businesses facing closure, millions unable to afford to keep warm this winter, should be a matter of national shame…None of this just ‘happened’… It’s the result of political choices.”

While political leaders — and their cheerleaders in academia and the bureaucracies — live comfortably on taxpayer-funded salaries, citizens suffer.

Vijay Jayaraj is a Research Associate at the CO2 Coalition, Arlington, VA. He holds a masters degree in environmental sciences from the University of East Anglia, UK and resides in India.

September 14, 2022 Posted by | Malthusian Ideology, Phony Scarcity, Science and Pseudo-Science, Timeless or most popular | , | 1 Comment

A Culture Of Faith

Tony Heller | September 7, 2022

The psychological warfare campaign being waged against the public has nothing to do with climate science, and everything to do with the science of propaganda.

September 14, 2022 Posted by | Mainstream Media, Warmongering, Malthusian Ideology, Phony Scarcity, Science and Pseudo-Science, Timeless or most popular, Video | 1 Comment

Poland receives US nuclear offer

Samizdat | September 13, 2022

The US has sent Poland a proposal to help build six nuclear reactors in the country in a bid to reduce carbon emissions and gradually phase out coal, the Polish Climate ministry announced on Monday.

Delivered to Poland’s Minister of Climate and Environment Anna Moskwa by US ambassador Mark Brzezinski, the proposal suggested that Washington and Warsaw create a detailed bilateral roadmap for the construction project, which is set to be finished by 2040.

“It’s more than a commercial offer, it reflects 18 months of work and millions of dollars spent on analysis and evaluations,” said a spokesperson for the Westinghouse Electric Company, a US firm bidding to take on the project.

US Secretary of Energy Jennifer M. Granholm called the report “a major step towards Poland’s development of a robust civil nuclear industry that is zero-carbon emitting and will result in another European source of energy that is free from Russian influence.”

“This project has the potential to ensure that the Polish people can receive the safest, most advanced, and reliable nuclear technology available,” the politician added.

The Polish government expects the partner in its nuclear programme to take a 49% stake in the company and assist in managing and financing the plants, after providing the technology for them.

The government in Warsaw will now consider the US proposal, and make a decision before annual talks on technology issues this autumn.

Washington’s offer comes shortly after Poland claimed that it had become the “locomotive of development” for the whole of Europe, while questioning Germany’s supposedly misguided energy policies, which have been left in “ruins”.

“Germany’s policies have inflicted tremendous damage on Europe,” said Polish Prime Minister Mateusz Morawiecki, describing the phase-out of coal and nuclear power as “premature”. The leader also criticized Berlin’s decision to allow the construction of the Nord Stream 1 and 2 gas pipelines, and grilled Berlin for becoming energy dependent on Russia.

September 14, 2022 Posted by | Nuclear Power | , | 3 Comments

Wall Street Giants Set to Smash Profit Records Off Global Hunger, Energy Crisis

By Jake Johnson | Common Dreams | September 9, 2022

Russia’s war on Ukraine has wreaked havoc on global commodity markets, driving up energy and food prices and exacerbating hunger emergencies around the world.

“We’re in a market where speculators are driving prices up.”

But while disastrous for the global poor—millions of whom are living on the brink of famine—the chaos has been a major boon for Wall Street giants, according to new data showing that the world’s 100 largest banks are on pace to smash commodity trading profit records this year.

“The 100 biggest banks by revenue are set to make $18 billion from commodities trading in 2022,” Bloomberg reported Friday, citing figures from the London-based firm Vali Analytics. “That would be the highest in the data, which goes back 14 years, and exceed the previous high watermark in 2009.”

“The prediction is the latest evidence that the wild swings in energy prices triggered by the war in Ukraine are delivering a boon to commodity traders, even as they push European nations into crisis,” Bloomberg added. “Vali, an analytics firm that tracks trading business, compiled data that includes the leading five banks in commodity trading: Macquarie Group Ltd., Goldman Sachs Group Inc., JPMorgan Chase & Co., Citigroup Inc., and Morgan Stanley.”

Though the prices of wheat and other food staples have fallen from their peak in recent months, they remain significantly elevated compared to last year, according to the United Nations’ Food and Agriculture Organization, leaving millions vulnerable to hunger and starvation.

The World Food Program estimates that “as many as 828 million people go to bed hungry every night” and “the number of those facing acute food insecurity has soared—from 135 million to 345 million—since 2019.”

Energy prices have also eased but remain high, contributing to cost-of-living crises throughout Europe and other parts of the globe.

“People’s misery makes capitalists’ superprofit,” Salvatore De Rosa, a researcher at the Lund University Center for Sustainability Studies, tweeted in response to Bloomberg‘s reporting. “How do you reform this?”

Wall Street banks have not just benefited from the commodity price increases—they’ve actively helped fuel them, experts say.

“We’re in a market where speculators are driving prices up,” Michael Greenberger, former head of the Division of Trading and Markets at the U.S. Commodity Futures Trading Commission, told Mongabay in July.

“Commodity markets are supposed to be hedging markets for people who are dealing with the commodity involved,” Greenberger said. “In the case of wheat, it would be farmers and people buying wheat. But if we looked at it, there would be banks in there with no interest in what the price of wheat is, writing swaps and controlling this price.”

“It’s too easy to say the war in Ukraine has unbalanced all these markets, [or that] supply chains and the ports are shot, and that there’s a supply and demand reason for these prices going up,” Greenberger added. “My own best guess is anywhere from 10% to 25% of the price, at least, is dictated by deregulated speculative activity.”

September 14, 2022 Posted by | Economics, Malthusian Ideology, Phony Scarcity | | Leave a comment

Global Oil Output Short of 6Mln BPD Due to Western Policy: Russian Energy Official

Samizdat – 14.09.2022

ST. PETERSBURG, Russia – A significant investment shortage into traditional energy sources caused by the Western sanctions and environmental, social, and governance (ESG) policy has caused a global production deficit of 5-6 million barrels per day, Russian First Deputy Energy Minister Pavel Sorokin said on Wednesday.

“The current situation on the energy market is not a result of the last few months but a consequence of the policy that was being created by the West during the last decade. The sanctions, which were imposed not only on Russia but on other countries, as well as the green agenda and the ESG policy of the last 10-15 years caused a significant shortage of investments into traditional energy sources. It has deprived the world of 5-6 barrels of oil per day, according to our estimates,” Sorokin said at the 11th St. Petersburg International Gas Forum.

The official also said that traditional energy sources are short of at least 250-270 billion euros ($25.1- $27 billion) in investments per year, adding that the slowdown in demand for oil and gas in the developing countries in Latin America, Africa and in the Asia-Pacific region affect the global economy, increasing the risks of economic recession.

The 11th St. Petersburg International Gas Forum (SPIGF), which is taking place from September 13-16 in the Expoforum Convention and Exhibition Centre, is hosting more than 80 events with the participation of 700 speakers from 20 countries. It aims to outline prospects for the further development of the sector, according to the organizers.

Among the main events of the SPIGF 2022 convention program are the international scientific and practical conference “Underground Gas Storage: Reliability and Efficiency” and plenary session “Gas Engine Fuel: a Reliable Solution in the Face of New Social-Economical and Environmental Challenges.”

September 14, 2022 Posted by | Economics, Malthusian Ideology, Phony Scarcity | , | Leave a comment

Russia-Turkey deal to ensure poorest countries will receive grain

By Ahmed Adel | September 14, 2022

The opening of the Black Sea corridor for the export of Russian grain allows Turkey to realize some of its interests, but more importantly, it allows Russian grain to reach the most vulnerable countries, which is critical since Ukrainian grain is ending up in the EU instead of the poorest countries. Russian President Vladimir Putin and his Turkish counterpart Recep Tayyip Erdogan will discuss the opening of the corridor for the export of Russian grain at the upcoming Shanghai Cooperation Organisation (SCO) summit to be held on September 15-16 in Samarkand, Uzbekistan. 

Although Western sanctions have not been directly imposed on Russian grain, sanctions have created export difficulties. Therefore, a corridor through the Turkish Straits is a solution and will also benefit Ankara’s coffers as utility companies in Turkish ports will profit. In addition, Turkey is the main supplier of flour to the European market, with the flour being made from Turkish, Russian and Ukrainian grains. 

Moscow is facing some problems despite sanctions not being directly imposed against Russian grain. For example, there are issues with payments and settlements as many banks are simply afraid of sanctions. Sanctions also create problems with transportation logistics, especially with ships. Those logistical problems have led to an increase in the price of grain. 

More importantly, the poorest countries lose access to basic foodstuffs because developed countries buy them instead. According to data, 345 million people around the world are already suffering from food insecurity, 2.5 times more people than in 2019.

From the Turkish perspective, presidential elections will be held next year, and with country experiencing major economic issues, Erdogan is hoping to close a deal that can boost his popularity. With difficulties on the domestic front, he is using foreign policy issues and nationalistic rhetoric aimed against the Kurds in Syria, the Armenians in Nagorno-Karabakh, issues in the Mediterranean with Greece, and now global food insecurity, to gain votes.

At the same time, the US evidently does not care about poor countries that were not supplied with Ukrainian grain. In fact, Washington deceivingly accuses Moscow of creating fake news about who the grain was supplied to. Erdogan too, challenges the American position.

“The fact that grain shipments are going to the countries that implement these sanctions (against Moscow) disturbs Mr. Putin. We also want grain shipments to start from Russia,” Erdogan said at a news conference with his Croatian counterpart on September 8. “The grain that comes as part of this grain deal unfortunately goes to rich countries, not to poor countries.”

It is recalled that Putin said at the Eastern Economic Forum in Vladivostok that Russia will not cooperate with those who put up barriers against it. Although this at first was thought to mean oil and gas, this policy is also the same with grain. 

None-the-less, to friendly states, Moscow not only intends to deliver 30 million tons of grain to those that need it by the end of the year, but in fact will increase those deliveries to 50 million in 2023.

Although the US would ultimately want to ban the export of Russian grain, there cannot be a complete ban since grain is categorised as humanitarian goods. The grain harvest in Russia was good this year, making the export potential significant, and thus it will likely ensure that a food crisis does not emerge. 

In any case, the delivery of Russian and Ukrainian grain to world markets is important in stabilising prices. Turkey in this way is positioning itself as an indispensable partner in alleviating a potential global food crisis. Despite around 100 cargo ships having left Ukrainian ports since July, Ukraine’s wheat has not reached its traditional clients in Africa at anywhere near its normal volume. With Putin and Erdogan expected to conclude an agreement in the coming days, Russia will be in a position to ensure that there is not a global scarcity or crisis.

Ahmed Adel is a Cairo-based geopolitics and political economy researcher.

September 14, 2022 Posted by | Aletho News | , , | 1 Comment