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The Fake ‘Tripledemic’ That Was 90% RSV and Almost Zero COVID-19


Already by the last week of October 2022, continuing through November and early December, local Rhode Island media were amplifying clinician and public health official warnings about a paediatric respiratory illness ‘tripledemic’. The ‘tripledemic’ that prompted this tocsin of looming calamity in children was an alleged convergence of COVID-19, influenza and respiratory syncytial virus (RSV).

Serious paediatric illness is best gauged by the actual number of children hospitalised, as opposed to ‘respiratory virus test positivity’. The latter is especially misleading because of the unique, ongoing phenomenon of continued mass COVID-19 testing for minimal symptoms. Curiously, almost two months later, I could find no local media follow-up coverage elucidating the feared paediatric ‘tripledemic’ by this most germane metric: a direct comparison of children hospitalised for COVID-19, influenza or RSV.

With the cooperation of Rhode Island Department of Health (RIDOH) spokesman Joseph Wendelken, and an academic paediatrician at Hasbro Children’s Hospital, I can now present those hospitalisation data, per the table below. Given time lags in compilation and transmission, the hospitalisation record only covers all of October, and November 2022.

Despite the anguished media declarations, there was no Rhode Island paediatric ‘tripledemic’, at least through October and November. RSV, alone, accounted for around 90% (194 ÷ 222 = 87.4%) of so-called ‘tripledemic’ hospitalisations among Rhode Island children, and the rate of RSV hospitalisations (97 per month), was around seven-fold the rate of COVID-19 and influenza hospitalisations combined (14 per month). Moreover, the surrogate for RSV hospitalisations, a single International Classification of Diseases (ICD) RSV code (bronchiolitis, an inflammation of the smaller lung airways) omits RSV pneumonia and bronchitis coded hospitalisations. Certainly, omitting these ICD codes underestimates true paediatric RSV admissions.

The rate of primary (or ‘suspected‘ primary) COVID-19 pediatric hospitalisations mirrored what I discovered about the receding ‘Omicron wave’ from February to early June 2022. After weeks of wrangling, requiring an Access to Public Records Act submission to the Rhode Island Department of Health (RIDOH), supported by two state legislators, my query on paediatric COVID-19 hospitalisations in the first half of 2022 was answered on August 5th 2022. These data revealed that during the 16-week period from February 13th 2022 through June 4th 2022 there were a total of only 15 primary COVID-19 paediatric hospitalisations (for ages 0 to 17 years-old), as determined by RIDOH criteria. Notwithstanding this clinically insignificant, low ebb trickle of COVID-19 paediatric hospitalisations, RIDOH issued two memos recommending Rhode Island public schools re-institute compulsory masking (see RIDOH memos dated May 19th 2022 and May 20th 2022) for all school children in so-called “high COVID-19 transmission” districts.

Present ‘tripledemic’ nonoccurrence aside, the overwhelmingly RSV-driven rate of increased paediatric respiratory illness hospitalisations in Rhode Island during October and November should decline significantly in December and January as RSV infection rates peaked in early November and declined precipitously through early December (see data from RIDOH, plotted below).

Additional reassuring national data from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) indicate the early influenza spike this year may be peaking in the U.S. overall as well, albeit not yet in New England. The third leg of the non-‘tripledemic’, COVID-19 paediatric infections, are not spiking in Rhode Island above rates observed since the summer and early autumn, while primary COVID-19 hospitalisation rates in children (see earlier table) remain exceedingly low.

Predictably, those Rhode Island medical thought leaders ginning up unwarranted concerns about the ‘tripledemic’ are once againad nauseumpushing non-evidence-based masking and vaccination in children.

They ignore uniformly negative randomised controlled trials (RCTs) on community masking for the prevention of either influenza (12 RCTs; 10 here; also here and here) or COVID-19 (two RCTs; herehere), complemented by a small RCT in healthcare workers which demonstrated masks also failed to prevent RSV. While acknowledging the absence of a viable vaccine for RSV (but failing to mention the catastrophic failure of historical RSV ‘immunisation’), such thought leaders also ignore the absence of RCT data demonstrating either influenza or COVID-19 vaccines prevent hospitalisation from these respiratory illnesses in children.

The high rate of paediatric RSV hospitalisations alone in October-November should not be shrilly exploited by the media or so-called medical authorities to make counterfactual claims of an RSV, COVID-19 and influenza ‘tripledemic’. Instead, RSV, and now influenza, far more than COVID-19, should be accepted for what they are, i.e., part of the natural cycle of paediatric respiratory infections, and treated calmly, and with caring.

Dr. Andrew Bostom is a physician currently affiliated with the Brown University Center for Primary Care and Prevention, and was an Associate Professor of Medicine and Family Medicine at the Warren Alpert Medical School of Brown University from 1997 until June 2021. As a clinical trialist and epidemiologist he designed and completed the largest randomised controlled trial conducted in chronic kidney transplant recipients.

December 21, 2022 Posted by | Mainstream Media, Warmongering, Science and Pseudo-Science | , , , | 1 Comment

How Suspicious is it That U.S. Intelligence Spotted the Coronavirus in Wuhan Weeks Before China Did?


Here’s something that’s been bugging me. How did U.S. intelligence analysts pick up on what they deemed a dangerous novel virus in China at a time when there’s no good evidence China had picked up on it or was concerned? How did they spot the signal in all the noise of a normal Chinese flu season?

U.S. intelligence officials have admitted in various media reports to tracking the coronavirus outbreak in China since mid-November 2019, and even briefing NATO and Israel at the time. Yet at no point has any detail been provided on what caused them to take this unusual action.

Here’s what we’ve been told, as gathered by DRASTIC’s Gilles Demaneuf. ABC News on April 9th 2020 reported information from “four sources” that “as far back as late November, U.S. intelligence officials were warning that a contagion was sweeping through China’s Wuhan region, changing the patterns of life and business and posing a threat to the population”.

These concerns “were detailed in a November intelligence report by the military’s National Center for Medical Intelligence (NCMI)”, citing two officials familiar with the report. The report was “the result of analysis of wire and computer intercepts, coupled with satellite images”. One of the sources said: “Analysts concluded it could be a cataclysmic event” and that “it was then briefed multiple times to” the Defense Intelligence Agency, the Pentagon’s Joint Staff and the White House.

The ABC report adds that “China’s leadership knew the epidemic was out of control” and the U.S. President was briefed in January.

From that warning in November, the sources described repeated briefings through December for policymakers and decision-makers across the federal Government as well as the National Security Council at the White House. All of that culminated with a detailed explanation of the problem that appeared in the President’s Daily Brief of intelligence matters in early January, the sources said…

“The timeline of the intel side of this may be further back than we’re discussing,” the source said of preliminary reports from Wuhan. “But this was definitely being briefed beginning at the end of November as something the military needed to take a posture on.”

The NCMI report was made available widely to people authorised to access intelligence community alerts. Following the report’s release, other intelligence community bulletins began circulating through confidential channels across the Government around Thanksgiving, the sources said. Those analyses said China’s leadership knew the epidemic was out of control even as it kept such crucial information from foreign governments and public health agencies.

However, the media reports are inconsistent. The same day (April 9th), NBC News published the following report, stating that “there was no assessment that a lethal global outbreak was brewing at that time”.

The intelligence came in the form of communications intercepts and overhead images showing increased activity at health facilities, the officials said. The intelligence was distributed to some federal public health officials in the form of a “situation report” in late November, a former official briefed on the matter said. But there was no assessment that a lethal global outbreak was brewing at that time, a defence official said.

Air Force Gen. John Hyten, Vice Chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff, said that he did not see intelligence reports on the coronavirus until January.

We went back and looked at everything in November and December. The first indication we have were the reports out of China in late December that were in the public forum. And the first intel reports I saw were in January.

The NCMI itself denied to ABC the existence of the “product/assessment” i.e., the report being referred to (though some have suggested a report that wasn’t technically an intelligence ‘product’ likely existed).

According to a Times of Israel report of April 16th 2020, the U.S. intelligence community “became aware of the emerging disease in Wuhan in the second week of [November] and drew up a classified document”. This report also claims that China was aware at the time: “Information on the disease outbreak was not in the public domain at that stage – and was known only apparently to the Chinese Government.” An Israeli Channel 12 report of the same date claimed U.S. intelligence was ‘following the spread’ in mid-November and even briefed NATO and Israel at the time – though, somewhat contradictorily, said the information “did not come out of the Chinese regime”.

A secret U.S. intelligence report, which warned of an “unknown disease” in Wuhan, China, was sent to only two of its allies: NATO and Israel. In the second week of November, U.S. intelligence recognised that a disease with new characteristics was developing in Wuhan, China. They followed its spread, when at that stage this classified information was not known to the media and did not come out of the Chinese regime either.

These media reports from unnamed intelligence officials referring to undisclosed briefing documents are clearly not all consistent. The Times of Israel claim that the Chinese Government knew in November is particularly odd as that report says it draws its information directly from the Channel 12 report, which states the opposite. The ABC News claim that the Chinese Government was aware in November of an “out of control” epidemic that was “changing patterns of life” but this information was kept secret is also odd. How could could an “out of control” epidemic that was “changing patterns of life” be kept secret? When the virus came to light at the end of December it was accompanied by a flurry of social media activity in China. Where is the social media activity from November, of people talking about an “out of control” epidemic that was “changing patterns of life and business”? Where are the satellite images showing these impacts on hospitals and social life? None have been produced, but this would be straightforward to do.

This leads to a crucial question. Did China know in November? I had previously assumed so, but looking more objectively, I’ve not seen any hard evidence it did. The 2021 US intelligence report on Covid origins says China “probably did not have foreknowledge that SARS-CoV-2 existed before WIV researchers isolated it after public recognition of the virus in the general population”. But was it aware of an unusual outbreak of unknown etiology earlier? I can’t see we’ve been shown evidence it was.

Apart from the claims in the above media reports (which, as noted, are largely denied by defence officials), the only evidence we have comes from the 2022 Senate minority staff report, which has links to U.S. intelligence, especially biodefence bigwig Robert Kadlec. This report suggests that China became aware of a leak at the Wuhan Institute of Virology (WIV) in November 2019 and, at that time, began working on a vaccine. But it gives no real evidence for this claim, just vague statements about when safety training occurred and insinuations about the timing of vaccine development. It also, notably, puts the attention wholly on Chinese research and the WIV and not at all on U.S. research, leading to suspicions it is a ‘limited hangout‘ from the intelligence community and an exercise in attention diversion.

It’s worth noting that Colonel Dr. Robert Kadlec, who appears to be behind the Senate report, was the first Homeland Security Director of Biosecurity Policy under President G.W. Bush and a mastermind of the early pandemic simulations, including 2001’s Dark Winter. When COVID-19 struck, Kadlec became the top emergency preparedness official co-ordinating the response from both the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services and the federal Government. He is thus a central figure in the U.S. biodefence establishment that brought us lockdowns and cannot be considered an independent or reliable source of information.

The best independent evidence we currently have that China knew earlier than the end of December are the reports Gilles Demaneuf relays from two U.S. scientists, Lawrence Gostin and Ian Lipkin, that in mid-December Chinese scientist contacts mentioned an unusual virus outbreak to them. This is hardly early, though, and is weeks after mid-November.

There are many reasons to think, as per the Channel 12 media briefing, that China did not know before December. For example, the evident lack of concern the Chinese Government had about the virus right up until around January 23rd. As late as January 14th China’s experts were telling the World Health Organisation they weren’t even sure the virus transmitted between humans! It’s hard to credit that, but it still shows how unalarmed they were.

There is also the absence of previous public health alerts like the one that appeared on December 31st 2019 from the Wuhan Municipal Health Commission, plus, as noted, the lack of any social media activity about an outbreak in November. In addition, there is the apparent failure to sequence the virus earlier than the end of December, and then in a private lab, which also puts the idea that China was developing a vaccine from November on shaky ground. And there is the fact that Chinese authorities appeared to believe the Huanan wet market was a plausible origin for the virus during January until they investigated the theory and debunked it.

Sure, there may be alternative explanations for some of these things. For instance, the wet market story may have been a way of supporting the bizarre initial claim that there didn’t appear to be human-to-human transmission, which it’s hard to believe Chinese scientists ever really believed, given how implausible it is and the fact that there did seem to be some awareness of a wider outbreak among Chinese scientists during December. On the other hand, the leaked Chinese Government report from February 2020 appears to show officials hurriedly looking back to see what was going in hospitals in October and November, with no indication they knew at the time – and also no indication of an “out of control” epidemic. Perhaps this too is a clever fake. But is all of it fake? And in any case, where is the actual positive evidence that China knew?

The apparent cluelessness of the Chinese contrasts strongly with what U.S. intelligence officials have said they knew in November, as per the above media briefings which state that U.S. intelligence analysts were ‘following the spread’ since mid-November and that the United States’ military, Government and allies were being kept informed. Perhaps some of this is exaggerated by intelligence officials trying to defend themselves from charges of missing the early signs of the pandemic. But all of it?

Furthermore, there is a very telling report from Dr. Michael Callahan, whom Dr. Robert Malone has described as “the top U.S. Government/CIA expert in both biowarfare and gain of function research”, and who was already in Wuhan at the beginning of January “under cover of his Harvard Professor appointment”. He told Rolling Stone that he had gone to Singapore to track the virus during November and December. He claims to have been tipped off about the virus by “Chinese colleagues”, but this is very vague and may not be true.

In early January, when the first hazy reports of the new coronavirus outbreak were emerging from Wuhan, China, one American doctor had already been taking notes. Michael Callahan, an infectious disease expert, was working with Chinese colleagues on a longstanding avian flu collaboration in November when they mentioned the appearance of a strange new virus. Soon, he was jetting off to Singapore to see patients there who presented with symptoms of the same mysterious germ.

There are two other striking contrasts between the initial approaches of the United States and China that are worth noting. Firstly, U.S. intelligence and biodefence people were highly alarmist about the new virus straight off in January while the Chinese Government remained apparently calm until around January 23rd. It’s still not entirely clear why China reversed policy at that point; ostensibly it was connected with acknowledging human-to-human transmission, but that is unlikely to be the real reason.

Secondly, U.S. scientists and intelligence officials latched onto a wet market theory that they knew to be false given that U.S. intelligence had been following the outbreak since November and that Chinese authorities themselves debunked the theory very early on. Despite this, some U.S. scientists, including those involved in the Fauci lab leak cover-up, have stuck to it doggedly since.

It is also of significance that U.S. intelligence officials and scientists have since the very start actively blocked any attempt to investigate the possibility of an engineered virus, a lab leak or early spread of the virus (though a few in U.S. intelligence seem to have been willing to investigate, albeit apparently with an agenda to exclusively blame China). Senior Government officials have been reported as repeatedly warning colleagues “not to pursue an investigation into the origin of COVID-19” because it would “‘open a can of worms’ if it continued”.

Despite squashing the investigations into origins, U.S. intelligence officials have insisted time and again that the virus definitely or likely wasn’t engineered and even backed the wet market theory months after it was discredited by the Chinese themselves. On April 30th 2020 the office of the U.S. Director of National Intelligence (which at that time was in vacancy) issued a statement that: “The Intelligence Community also concurs with the wide scientific consensus that the COVID-19 virus was not manmade or genetically modified.” On May 5th 2020, CNN reported a briefing from a Five Eyes intelligence source stating unequivocally that the coronavirus outbreak “originated in a Chinese market”.

Intelligence shared among Five Eyes nations indicates it is “highly unlikely” that the coronavirus outbreak was spread as a result of an accident in a laboratory but rather originated in a Chinese market, according to two Western officials who cited an intelligence assessment that appears to contradict claims by President Donald Trump and Secretary of State Mike Pompeo.

There is of course no way that genetic modification could have been ruled out, either then or since, given the lack of similar natural viruses and animal reservoirs and the fact that the knowhow to make the modifications certainly exists. For all its faults, the 2022 Senate report was the first intelligence-associated document to treat an engineered agent as a serious possibility – though notably to try to put the blame entirely on China. American scientists are simply not talking, however – an evasiveness that led Jeffrey Sachs to disband the Covid origins taskforce which formed part of the Lancet Covid commission he was chairing, perceiving severe conflicts of interest and a basic lack of cooperation from U.S. scientists, who appeared to be hiding something.

My fear is that there aren’t many good ways to explain all this. Why was U.S. intelligence following a potentially dangerous virus outbreak in China in November, weeks before there is evidence China was aware of the situation or concerned about it? How did it spot such a signal in the noise of an early flu season? As Gilles Demaneuf points out:

Satellite imaging would not allow us to distinguish between a bad seasonal pneumonia outbreak and the beginning of a coronavirus outbreak occurring at the same time. It is therefore likely that only part of the data that NCMI observed, such as communications at specific hospitals, was indeed linked clearly to something worse than a bad but still standard pneumonia.

But of course – and this is a crucial point – COVID-19 is not clearly and clinically distinguishable from a bad but still standard pneumonia. Demaneuf implies that analysts intercepted hospital communications revealing something distinctive that caused them considerable concern. But what is that? They don’t say – but they should. To state the obvious, these reports should be declassified and put into the public domain. The difficulty, though, is that it’s hard even to conceive what it might be. What were the doctors saying to one another that grabbed the intelligence analysts’ attention and caused them to start briefing NATO and jetting off to Singapore? Whatever it was, it does not appear to have alarmed the hospital doctors themselves, as no evidence has been produced that doctors or Government officials in China noticed or were concerned prior to mid-December. We have also seen no evidence of the “out of control” epidemic that was “changing patterns of life and business” as claimed in ABC News. The trouble is, in the absence of details, we’re left wondering what it could conceivably be, particularly when COVID-19 is not clinically distinguishable from other causes of severe pneumonia.

There is, it should be noted, one straightforward way to explain all of this, but it’s implications are disturbing to say the least. It is that the virus was deliberately released in China by some group or groups within the U.S. intelligence and security services. The purpose of such a release would be partly to disrupt China and partly as a live exercise for pandemic preparedness – which is, as we know, how the pandemic was in practice treated by those in the U.S. biodefence network. While shocking, this is not outside the bounds of possibility. Consider what Robert Kadlec wrote in a Pentagon strategy paper in 1998:

Using biological weapons under the cover of an endemic or natural disease occurrence provides an attacker the potential for plausible denial. Biological warfare’s potential to create significant economic loss and subsequent political instability, coupled with plausible denial, exceeds the possibilities of any other human weapon.

If this were the case, it may be that the addition of the furin cleavage site to the virus would be to enhance its infectiousness in order to increase the chance of a pandemic occurring (perhaps they’d tried before with a less infectious virus and it hadn’t worked so well). The virus would be deliberately relatively mild so it didn’t do too much harm, but severe enough to have the desired impact – at least when assisted with psyops and propaganda. Very few individuals would likely know the origin – most would be part of the live exercise.

Such a scenario would neatly explain how U.S. intelligence personnel were closely ‘following the spread’ in November despite China being oblivious. It would also explain why U.S. biodefence people were far more alarmist than the Chinese authorities from the get-go; why they have denied the virus could be engineered and squashed all efforts to investigate origins (and clung to discredited theories); and why they have followed through on the whole lockdown-and-wait-for-a-vaccine biodefence plan despite the virus plainly not warranting it (and the measures not working), and generally treated the whole thing like a live exercise. It’s uncontentious to point out that the pandemic was a golden opportunity to put their long-prepared plans into practice. But what if it was an opportunity they didn’t leave to chance?

None of us wants to draw this conclusion, of course. To disprove it, at least as far as this argument is concerned, we would need to see considerably more detail about what U.S. intelligence analysts were seeing and saying in November 2019, which would explain how they knew what China did not and why they were so concerned when China was not.

Short of this, it’s hard not to wonder: what if releasing the virus in China to disrupt the country and see how the world responds could have been some hare-brained scheme cooked up in the deeper recesses of the U.S. biosecurity state?

December 21, 2022 Posted by | Deception, Timeless or most popular, War Crimes | , , , | 1 Comment

Court Says No, Biden Cannot Enforce Vaccine Mandates For Federal Contractors

By Steve Watson | Summit News | December 21, 2022

A 5th Circuit Court of Appeals ruled Monday that The Biden Administration cannot enforce a COVID vaccine mandate on federal contractors.

“The President’s use of procurement regulations to reach through an employing contractor to force obligations on individual employees is truly unprecedented,” the ruling noted, adding “As such, Executive Order 14042 is unlawful, and the Plaintiff States have consequently demonstrated a strong likelihood of success on the merits.”

Referring to Biden’s Executive Order, the ruling also stated that “Congress has not spoken clearly to authorize such a dramatic shift in the exercise of the President’s power under the Procurement Act.”

The vaccine mandate would affect up to 20 percent of people employed in the U.S., Reuters has noted.

Louisiana Attorney General Jeff Landry, one of the plaintiffs in the case issued a statement asserting that “Today is a victory for freedom,” and vowing “We will continue to stand up against the Biden Administration’s abuses of power that threaten us now and in the future.”

The Ruling comes a week after The Senate passed the National Defense Authorization Act, which lifted the COVID vaccine mandate for active duty military personnel.

Republicans in the Senate, led by Rand Paul, had threatened to block the legislation unless the mandate was scrapped.

While the mandate will be sidelined, some 8,000 troops who were given the boot for refusing to go along with it have not been reinstated.

GOP Senators Ron Johnson and Ted Cruz argued tnhatthe discharged troops should be reinstated with back pay, reasoning that the mandate was “illegal”.

However, Democrats stated that reinstating those service members would send the message that it’s acceptable to disobey orders.

“What we’re telling soldiers is, if you disagree, don’t follow the order and then just lobby Congress and they’ll come along and they’ll restore your rank, they’ll restore your benefits, they’ll restore everything, so orders are just sort of suggestions,” Senate Armed Services Committee Chairman Jack Reed, D-R.I., said on the Senate floor. “They’re not.”

Some of the service members are taking the fight to the courts.

December 21, 2022 Posted by | Civil Liberties, War Crimes | , | 1 Comment

Star Of Body-Positivity Show Dead From Heart Failure At Age 37

By Tyler Durden – Zero Hedge – December 20, 2022

The body positivity movement, at least in the case of women, has been highly promoted by every area of the entertainment media and among social justice activists based on a singular claim: You can be healthy at any size (HAES).

The claim has inspired numerous efforts to normalize obesity in American society as not only socially acceptable but also medically acceptable. While political activism in science is nothing new and has been present in everything from climate change rhetoric to pandemic response, fat positivity disinformation in scientific observation is perhaps the most egregious and widespread. It attempts to ignore or dismiss decades of studies on the negative effects of obesity and asserts that being grossly overweight has minimal or no health consequences.

This argument is often debunked by the very people that tend to promote it and encourage it, as they die incredibly young and from health problems that are usually reserved for the elderly.

Jamie Lopez, star of the body positivity-based television show ‘Super Sized Salon’, was an advocate of a ‘beauty at any size‘ philosophy, more so than a health at any weight ideal.  However, social justice proponents often held up her example as justification for the HAES lifestyle. She is now dead, suffering from heart failure at age 37.

To be fair to Lopez, she did attempt to lose weight, dropping over 400 pounds in a year.

But, going from 800 pounds to 400 pounds is still not enough to prevent the myriad of health problems associated with obesity. Undoubtedly, body positivity proponents will try to gloss over her cause of death, but the fact remains that health and weight are indelibly intertwined.

While “beauty” might be treated as socially subjective by some people (studies show beauty concepts are actually biologically ingrained), health standards are not subjective.

Gluttony has long been a despised habit within almost all cultures for a reason – It is a sign of a lack of discipline as well as a precursor to societal decline, and, it is a sure trigger for an early demise.

December 21, 2022 Posted by | Mainstream Media, Warmongering | 1 Comment

Deutsche Bank: “A Certain Degree of Eco-Dictatorship Will Be Necessary”


Izabella Kaminska, formerly the Editor of the FT’s Alphaville and now the Editor of the Blind Spot, has flagged up an alarming passage in a document published in January 2021 by Deutsche Bank Research entitled ‘What we must do to Rebuild’. Eric Heyman has written the section about the tough choices the EU must face it if’s to meet its goal of achieving ‘climate neutrality’ by 2050 – Net Zero, in other words – and says the following:

The impact of the current climate policy on people’s everyday lives is still quite abstract and acceptable for many households. Climate policy comes in the form of higher taxes and fees on energy, which make heating and mobility more expensive. Some countries have set minimum energy efficiency standards for buildings or similar rules in other areas. However, climate policy does not determine our lives. We take key consumption decisions, for example whether we travel at all, how much we travel and which means of transport we use, whether we live in a large house or a small apartment and how we heat our homes, how many electronic devices we have and how intensely we use them or how much meat and exotic fruit we eat. These decisions tend to be made on the basis of our income, not on climate considerations.

If we really want to achieve climate neutrality, we need to change our behaviour in all these areas of life. This is simply because there are
no adequate cost-effective technologies yet to allow us to maintain our living standards in a carbon-neutral way. That means that carbon prices will have to rise considerably in order to nudge people to change their behaviour. Another (or perhaps supplementary) option is to tighten regulatory law considerably. I know that “eco-dictatorship” is a nasty word. But we may have to ask ourselves the question whether and to what extent we may be willing to accept some kind of eco-dictatorship (in the form of regulatory law) in order to move towards climate neutrality.

When he says we have to “ask ourselves… whether and to what extent we may be willing to accept some kind of eco-dictatorship” I don’t think he has a Net Zero referendum in mind. Rather, by ‘ourselves’ he means the EU’s ruling class. It has to ask itself whether it’s willing to pass laws forcing the EU’s population to modify its behaviour to meet the 2050 ‘climate neutrality’ target, regardless of whether it has a democratic mandate to do so or not.

I suppose we should be grateful that at least Heyman hasn’t tried to sugar coat this. It should be clear what “eco-dictatorship” means, even to those most reluctant to accept that Net Zero zealots have little love for democracy.

Stop Press: Izabella Kaminska has interviewed the neo-Malthusian Turkish-American economist Nourel Roubini for the Blind Spot podcast. In his book Megathreats: The Ten Trends that Imperil Our Future, and How to Survive Them he argues that individual freedoms will have to be sacrificed if we’re to contain another pandemic or avoid a climate catastrophe.

December 21, 2022 Posted by | Civil Liberties, Malthusian Ideology, Phony Scarcity | | 4 Comments

“Silent Majority” of Car Industry is Concerned About Electric Vehicles


A “silent majority” of car companies is concerned that electric vehicles will not alone be able to end reliance on fossil fuels, according to a senior Toyota executive. The Telegraph has more.

Akio Toyoda, the company’s president and grandson of its founder Kiichiro Toyoda, said that many concerned senior figures are reluctant to say what they really think because of the pressure to go green.

It comes as the industry struggles to ditch petrol and diesel, in the face of materials shortages and complex processes that have kept the cost of building electric cars high.

In comments on a visit to Thailand first reported by the Wall Street Journal, Mr Toyoda said: “People involved in the auto industry are largely a silent majority.

“That silent majority is wondering whether EVs [electric vehicles] are really OK to have as a single option. But they think it’s the trend so they can’t speak out loudly.”

Meanwhile, MPs on the parliamentary Science and Technology Committee have warned that plans to require that all new boilers are able to run on hydrogen within a few years are unrealistic and the gas is likely to play a limited role in the future energy system, given the practical challenges of producing and handling it cleanly at large scale. From the Telegraph:

They argue huge questions still need to be answered about the potential deployment of the gas, and highlight “conflicting views” on the role it could play in domestic heating, given the merits of electric heat pumps instead.

Hydrogen is currently a niche product used in chemical production and oil refining, but politicians around the world hope it can replace fossil fuels in uses ranging from heating to transport, as it does not produce emissions when burned.

However, the committee argued that in practice this was likely to be limited to uses where other options are unsuitable, or in areas which are close to hydrogen production hubs.

“It seems likely that any future use of hydrogen will be limited rather than universal,” they said. “This limited – rather than universal – use of hydrogen should inform Government decisions. For example, we disagree with the Climate Change Committee’s recommendation that the Government should mandate new domestic boilers to be hydrogen-ready from 2025.”

Both reports are worth reading in full.

December 21, 2022 Posted by | Economics, Malthusian Ideology, Phony Scarcity | | Leave a comment

Russian carmaker to launch production at former Nissan plant

RT | December 21, 2022

Russia’s biggest automaker, Avtovaz, will start producing cars at a plant in St. Petersburg previously owned by the Japanese car manufacturer Nissan, the company’s CEO Maxim Sokolov told reporters on Wednesday.

Sokolov noted that the cars will be produced under the Lada brand and that preparations for the launch of production are in the final stages.

“We will not reveal all the details now, they are kept under wraps by the automakers till the last moment, but I can say that these cars will be modern, of high quality and with the highest safety standards… As soon as the memorandums [with our partners] are signed, we will immediately present them to the public,” the company official said.

Earlier reports stated that Avtovaz was planning to restart production at the plant in the second half of 2023.

The Nissan plant in St. Petersburg, which was launched in 2009, has a production capacity of up to 100,000 cars per year. Last year, roughly 43,000 cars came off of its assembly line. The plant mostly produced SUV models such as the Qashqai and X-trail.

The Japanese carmaker suspended operations at the plant in March, citing supply-chain interruptions due to Ukraine-related sanctions imposed on Moscow. Last month, the company decided to sell all of its Russian assets to the state-owned research and development firm NAMI, according to the Russian Trade Ministry. Under the deal, which was concluded for a token sum of €1, Russian carmaker Avtovaz is to carry out maintenance services for Nissan vehicles and supply spare parts for them.

December 21, 2022 Posted by | Economics | , | Leave a comment

Hungarian Parliament Speaker: West’s Push to Turn Ukraine Into Anti-Russian Bridgehead is a ‘Strategic Mistake’

Samizdat – 21.12.2022

Budapest has stood alone among NATO’s Eastern European flank in rejecting the transfer of weapons to Ukraine via its territory. Prime Minister Viktor Orban has essentially labeled the Ukrainian conflict a Russia-US proxy war, citing the need for peace talks between Russia and the US, rather than Moscow and Kiev, for the conflict to stop.

Hungarian Parliament speaker Laszlo Kover has lashed out against Western governments’ “hypocritical” behavior in Ukraine, and warned that the West’s attempts to pry Kiev out of Russia’s orbit and turn it into an armed base against Russia has proven to be a “strategic mistake.”

“I think the Western world made a strategic mistake when it tried to not only take Ukraine out of Moscow’s sphere of interest, but also turn it into a large military base against Russia,” Kover said in a broad ranging interview with a Hungarian radio station on Tuesday.

Asked whether he sees any prospects for a diplomatic resolution to the crisis, Kover said that if he “wanted to be cynical,” he would point out that Western countries have already found a workaround, by “proclaiming the protection of European values and international law and accusing Russia of all kinds of crimes, with basis or without basis. In the meantime, they have tried to stock up on Russian oil and gas, so their trade volume with Russia actually jumped radically after sanctions were announced.”

The politician, who is a member of Prime Minister Orban’s Fidesz party, accused Hungary’s European allies of engaging in a “hypocritical show” in Ukraine and behaving in a “terribly hypocritical and irrational” way, destroying their own economies, even as the United States “has embarked on the path of an openly protectionist economic policy,” by setting up trade barriers to European automobiles, for example, making American cars 25-30 percent cheaper than their European-made counterparts.

“This is clearly offensive. It violates all kinds of free trade rules and agreements, and of course violates the legitimate interests of European car manufacturers. Now, compared to this [the crisis with Russia, ed.] the leaders of the EU member states and the European Council are watching events with drooling glee, and we haven’t seen even a harsh outburst or verbal reaction, lest they take some kind of countermeasure, some kind of defensive step,” Kover complained.

The parliament speaker suggested that from the “first moment” of the Russia-West proxy conflict in Ukraine, the goal was to try to “destroy Russia economically, politically, in every sense” and to separate Moscow from the European Union, “to create a new Iron Curtain,” no matter the cost to Europe.

“This means in practice that the space of continuous economic and political cooperation based on mutual, fair consideration of interests, which could have been created in a unified Eurasia stretching to Portugal to say, Southeast Asia, seems to be falling apart at this moment, and I think that the damage caused by this conflict will stay with us for the rest of our lives,” Kover said.

Kover stressed that Hungary’s position has been and remains to defend its elementary economic interests by withdrawing from some EU-level sanctions against Russia “to prevent decisions that harm us more than Russia.” The official added that “the whole sanctions regime has hurt Europe much more than Russia, and I think we should fight here in Central Europe so that this scenario, where we become the eastern periphery of a North Atlantic empire, does not come true.”

Kover reiterated that measures were necessary “to try to end this armed conflict as quickly as possible,” even if it takes “years before this can take the form of some kind of peace treaty.” In the meantime, “we should try to create a new Central European or pan-European peace system in which each [country’s] security needs are taken into account by the other side,” the official said.

As for NATO’s role in the Ukraine crisis, Kover urged the Western alliance to stick to preparing to defend the sovereignty and security of alliance members, and not allow the bloc to drift into a hot war with Russia. “It’s very close to it anyway, because while no NATO members are involved in the war de jure… when a country supplies weapons to another that is at war or when a country or political community tries to destabilize the economic life of another country via various sanctions, blockades or the freezing of assets, this can be considered a kind of warfare.”

Relations between Hungary and Ukraine have been strained since the 2014 Euromaidan coup, which brought nationalist forces to power in Kiev which gradually moved to deprive the 150,000-strong community of ethnic Hungarian Ukrainians living in western Ukraine of their rights, including the right to receive an education in their native tongue.

Amid the escalation of the crisis, Hungarian and Ukrainian officials have gotten into a series of vicious verbal spats, with Ukraine’s Foreign Ministry asking Kover to produce a note from a psychiatrist on his mental state after the speaker suggested that Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelensky was suffering from a “mental problem.”

December 21, 2022 Posted by | Economics, Militarism, Russophobia | , , , , | Leave a comment

Defense minister announces major expansion of Russian army

RT | December 21, 2022

Russian Defense Minister Sergey Shoigu has announced the need to make a number of structural changes to the country’s armed forces in light of NATO’s attempts to bolster its presence on Russia’s border and expand its membership to Finland and Sweden.

During a Russian Defense Ministry meeting on Wednesday, Shoigu proposed a number of measures to strengthen the security of the Russian Federation, including creating a special grouping of troops on the country’s northwestern border and expanding Russia’s armed forces to amount to 1.5 million servicemen in total, with some 695,000 of them being contract soldiers.

Shoigu’s comments come as Helsinki and Stockholm have submitted bids to join NATO, citing a perceived threat from Russia in light of its ongoing military operation in Ukraine. Their accession to the US-led bloc is currently stalled by Türkiye and Hungary, but all other members have already welcomed their membership.

The minister also offered to “gradually” change the minimum draft age in Russia from 18 to 21 and raise the maximum age to 30, while also offering all draftees the opportunity to sign a contract with the army from the first day of service.

Shoigu went on to suggest creating a number of new military groupings, including five new artillery divisions, eight bomber aviation regiments, and one fighter regiment, as well as six army aviation brigades.

Russian President Vladimir Putin, who also attended the meeting, approved the proposals for improving the country’s armed forces and instructed Shoigu to report back once these measures are deliberated with the ministerial board. Putin promised to address these proposals in detail later.

During his address to senior defense officials, Putin also emphasized the need to continue to modernize Russia’s nuclear arsenal, describing it as the key to guaranteeing the country’s sovereignty.

December 21, 2022 Posted by | Militarism | , , , | 1 Comment

West Seeks to Prolong Conflict in Ukraine as Much as Possible to Weaken Russia: Shoigu

Samizdat – 21.12.2022

MOSCOW – The West seeks to prolong military operations in Ukraine as much as possible in order to weaken Russia, Russian Defense Minister Sergei Shoigu said on Wednesday.

“We are particularly concerned about the buildup of NATO’s forward presence near the borders of Russia and Belarus, as well as the desire of the West to prolong military operations in Ukraine as much as possible in order to weaken our country,” Shoigu said at a collegium meeting at the Defense Ministry.

Russian armed forces continue to deliver precision strikes targeting the Ukrainian military command and control system, military enterprises and related facilities, and destroy the military potential of Kiev, Sergei Shoigu said.

“Russian troops continue to destroy military targets, inflict massive high-precision strikes on the military command and control system, enterprises of the military-industrial complex and related facilities, including energy. The supply chain of foreign weapons is being destroyed, the military potential of Ukraine is being crushed,” Shoigu said.

Russian servicemen are being confronted by the joint forces of the West during its military operation in Ukraine, Shoigu said.

“Today, in Ukraine, Russian military is being confronted by the joint Western forces. The United States and its allies are pumping the Kiev regime with weapons, training military personnel, providing [Ukraine with] intelligence information, sending advisers and mercenaries, and waging an information and sanctions war against us,” Shoigu said.
Russia is always open to constructive peace talks to settle the conflict in Ukraine, Russian Defense Minister Sergei Shoigu added.

“We are taking action to save the population from genocide and terror. Russia is always open to constructive peace talks,” Shoigu said.

The 2014 coup in Kiev funded by the West that brought anti-Russian forces to power has caused the current conflict in Ukraine, Sergei Shoigu stressed.

“After the revelations of [ex-German Chancellor Angels] Merkel, [ex-Ukrainian President Petro] Poroshenko and other politicians about the true goals of the Minsk agreements, it became obvious to everyone that Russia was not the source of the conflict in Ukraine. The reason is the coup d’etat in Kiev financed by the West in 2014, which brought anti-Russian forces to power and divided the fraternal peoples. This provoked an armed confrontation in Donbass,” Shoigu said.

Ukraine resorts to prohibited methods of confrontation, including terrorist attacks and contract killings, shelling of civilians with heavy weapons, as well as nuclear blackmail, Russian Defense Minister Sergei Shoigu said.

“The Ukrainian leadership resorts to prohibited methods of confrontation, including terrorist attacks and contract killings, shelling civilians with heavy weapons. Western countries try not to notice all this, as well as elements of nuclear blackmail, for example, provocations against the Zaporozhye nuclear power plant and scenarios for preparing the so-called dirty nuclear bomb,” Shoigu said at a collegium meeting at the Defense Ministry.

The United States seeks to use the situation around Ukraine to maintain global dominance, Shoigu added.

“It is clear that the current situation is beneficial primarily to the United States, which seeks to use it to maintain global dominance and weaken other countries, including its allies in Europe,” Shoigu said at a collegium meeting at the Defense Ministry.

The Russian armed forces are taking comprehensive measures to prevent civilian deaths in Ukraine, Sergei Shoigu said.

“In this context, comprehensive measures for excluding deaths among the civilian population are being taken,” he said at a collegium meeting at the Defense Ministry.
He also noted that the Russian army had been conducting precise air strikes against the military command and control system of Ukraine, enterprises of the Ukrainian defense industry complex and other related facilities.

December 21, 2022 Posted by | Timeless or most popular, War Crimes | , , , | 1 Comment

Former FBI lawyer and Twitter general counsel Jim Baker thanked FBI for convincing Twitter the Hunter Biden laptop story was fake

By Christina Maas | Reclaim The Net | December 20, 2022

Independent journalist Michael Shellenberger released a new batch of  Files that showed how the FBI convinced Twitter that the Hunter Biden laptop story was misinformation.

At the center of Twitter’s decision to suppress the story was Jim Baker, the former deputy legal counsel at Twitter, who held a similar role at the FBI before joining Twitter. Baker and the FBI worked together to convince Twitter that the contents of the Hunter Biden laptop story were hacked from another source by Russian agents and put on the laptop that the New York Post reported on.

“During all of 2020, the FBI and other law enforcement agencies repeatedly primed Yoel Roth to dismiss reports of Hunter Biden’s laptop as a Russian ‘hack and leak’ operation, ” Shellenberger wrote. Roth was then head of trust and safety at Twitter.

“Indeed, Twitter executives *repeatedly* reported very little Russian activity. E.g., on Sept 24, 2020, Twitter told the FBI it had removed 345 ‘largely inactive’ accounts ‘linked to previous coordinated Russian hacking attempts.’ They ‘had little reach & low follower accounts,’” Shellenberger continued.

Although Twitter continued to find nothing suspicious, the bureau repeatedly reached out for information.

In July 2020, FBI Assistant Special Agent Elvis Chan arranged for security clearances for Twitter executives so that they can be briefed about election interference the bureau expected to see ahead of the November 2020 election. Baker was one of the executives given the clearance, and Chan acted surprised to learn that Baker was at Twitter.

Baker was not the only ex-FBI agent at Twitter. Shellenberger revealed that there were so many that they had their own Slack channel.

Shellenberger found that after Baker was given clearance, the FBI gave him information intended to influence Roth and other executives to believe the laptop story originated from hacked materials. Baker and FBI agent Laura Dehmlow even had a private meeting where no one else was allowed.

Roth initially pushed back against the idea that there was foreign interference on Twitter. However, after the Post published the story, he conceded.

Shellenberger wrote: “On Oct 14, shortly after @NYPost publishes its Hunter Biden laptop story, Roth says, ‘it isn’t clearly violative of our Hacked Materials Policy, nor is it clearly in violation of anything else,’ but adds, ‘this feels a lot like a somewhat subtle leak operation.’”

After Roth’s message, Baker repeatedly insisted that “the Hunter Biden materials were either faked, hacked, or both, and a violation of Twitter policy.”
At around 10 am, hours after the Post published the story, Twitter suppressed it, citing “experts.”

“The suggestion from experts – which rings true – is there was a hack that happened separately, and they loaded the hacked materials on the laptop that magically appeared at a repair shop in Delaware,” Roth wrote in an email.

Shellenberger concluded that the influence and pressure from the FBI resulted in Twitter executives concluding that the content of the Hunter Biden laptop was misinformation.
Baker and his team signed a letter to the FBI agents who worked on the project to thank them for helping suppress the story.

December 21, 2022 Posted by | Civil Liberties, Deception, Timeless or most popular | , , | Leave a comment

Twitter Gave Boost to Pentagon Psyop Accounts

By Kyle Anzalone and Will Porter | The Libertarian Institute | December 20, 2022

Twitter placed dozens of accounts created by US Central Command (CENTCOM) on a “whitelist” for preferential treatment, according to internal company documents obtained by journalist Lee Fang. The eighth edition of the ‘Twitter Files’ exposed the site’s involvement in propaganda operations run by the Pentagon.

CENTCOM sent an email to Twitter in 2017 requesting special privileges for 52 Arabic-language accounts it said would be used to “amplify certain messages” to target audiences around the world. The social media platform quickly agreed and placed the accounts on a “whitelist,” which, according to Feng, ”essentially provides verification status to the accounts w/o the blue check, meaning they are exempt from spam/abuse flags, more visible/likely to trend on hashtags.”

Many of the profiles did not disclose their relationship with Pentagon, and some of them remain active. CENTCOM used the sock accounts to promote US policy goals or boost the message of American allies, with some posting about the war in Yemen and pushing criticism of Iran. Another handle was seen asserting that “accurate” US drone strikes only kill terrorists.

Fang pointed out that the accounts were in violation of Twitter’s own policies, as company executives had previously told lawmakers that they would “rapidly identify and shut down all state-backed covert information operations & deceptive propaganda.”

In previous reporting on the Twitter files, Matt Taibbi explained how the company effectively came to operate as a subsidiary of the FBI, while a separate exposé by Michael Shellenberger showed how the bureau leverages its influence to censor content and gain more access to Twitter data without warrants.

December 21, 2022 Posted by | Deception, Mainstream Media, Warmongering, Timeless or most popular | , | Leave a comment