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Thought for the day
"If a nation expects to be ignorant and free, in a state of civilization, it expects what never was and never will be.<br>The functions of every government have propensities to command at will the liberty and property of their constituents.<br>There is no safe deposit for these but with the people themselves; nor can they be safe with them without information. Where the press is free, and every man able to read, all is safe." -- Thomas Jefferson
Trump derangement syndrome has a curious way of scrambling coherent thought. Witness the Democratic-media complex’s blind insistence the Justice Department raid on Donald Trump’s home is just and necessary—rather than a dangerous move for their party and the republic.
In descending on Mar-a-Lago, the department and the Federal Bureau of Investigation shifted the U.S. into the category of countries whose ruling parties use government power to investigate political rivals. No attorney general has ever signed off on a raid on a former president’s home, in what could be the groundwork for criminal charges.
Following the passage and signing of the Democrat climate package, talks of new disincentives for meat consumption is once again becoming a hot topic. Far-left activists complained that so-called Inflation Reduction Act only devotes five-percent toward changing farm practices.
According to researchers, taxes could go as high as 56-percent for beef, 25-percent for poultry and up to 19-percent for lamb and pork.
Leftists have long suggested that meat and dairy production is the ‘biggest climate culprit’. Those in favor of taxing meat consumption say that as meat and dairy become more expensive, plant-based foods would become more affordable.
Webmaster addition: Okay, so here's the deal. Those plant-based meat substitutes (aside from not tasting all that great) are more expensive than real meat. The liberal solution is not to improve the plant-based product and lower the price but to tax meat to coerce the public to buy a product they do not really want. After the way we were all treated during the Covid vaccine push, I think there will be a lot of resistance to this latest stunt!
Earlier this week, the United Kingdom became the first country to approve Moderna’s reformulated version of its COVID-19 vaccine, which claims to provide protection against both the original form of the virus and the significantly less lethal but more transmissible Omicron variant. The product was approved by the UK’s Medicines and Healthcare Products Regulatory Agency (MHRA) with the support of the UK government’s Commission on Human Medicines.
Described by UK officials as a “sharpened tool” in the nation’s continued vaccination campaign, the reformulated vaccine combines the previously approved COVID-19 vaccine with a “vaccine candidate” targeting the Omicron variant BA.1. That vaccine candidate has never been previously approved and has not been the subject of independent study. The MHRA approved the vaccine based on a single, incomplete human trial currently being conducted by Moderna. The company promoted incomplete data from that trial in company press releases in June and July. The study has yet to be published in a medical journal or peer reviewed. No concerns have been raised by any regulatory agency, including the MHRA, regarding Moderna’s past history of engaging in suspect and likely illegal activity in past product trials, including for its original COVID-19 vaccine.
The approval comes shortly before several Western countries, including the UK, plan to conduct a massive COVID-19 booster vaccination campaign this fall. Moderna has also noted that approval for its Omicron booster vaccine are pending in the US, EU, Australia and Canada – all of which are also planning fall vaccination campaigns focused on COVID-19. The company’s CEO, Stéphane Bancel, has called the reformulated vaccine “our lead candidate for a Fall 2022 booster.”
Afghan special forces instructed by the United States flew to Iran with weapons and specialized combat training as the Taliban regained power lin the midst of the Biden administration's departure from the country, according to a report issued by Republicans on the House Foreign Affairs Committee, The Washington Free Beacon has reported.
Webmaster addition" I assume that some of that $80 billion in weapons Biden left in Afghanistan has made it's way to Iran!
On Tuesday Russian President Vladimir Putin weighed on on major security issues ranging from the ongoing war in Ukraine to China-US tensions over Taiwan in a televised speech. Speaking before defense officials and regional think tank analysts at the Tenth Moscow Conference on International Security, among the most notable assertion of his is that NATO is moving "further east".
Within days prior to launching the Feb.24 invasion of Ukraine, he gave what was essentially a war speech emphasizing that urgent military action was needed to prevent NATO's further expansion into Ukraine. But it seems that in his latest comments Tuesday, he sees the threat of NATO influence at work as far as southeast Asia as well.
In the fresh remarks, Putin continued his prior theme of a turn from unipolar to multi-polar world order, based on the decline of the United States and West. He said as translated in state media:
"Western globalist elites are provoking chaos by rekindling old and inciting new conflicts, implementing a policy of so-called containment, while undermining any alternative, sovereign paths of development. Thus, they are desperately trying to preserve the hegemony and power that are slipping out of their grasp, trying to keep countries and peoples in the grip of a neo-colonial order."
He blasted this Western "hegemony" as what in the end will result in global stagnation. Further he said:
"NATO's war machine is moving, approaching Russia's borders closely... Russia has been trying for 30 years to negotiate NATO non-expansion to the east..."
Faculty at the University of California–Los Angeles (UCLA) School of Law have created a database to identify and record efforts to block critical race theory (CRT) being taught in schools across the country.
The database, called the CRT Forward Tracking Project, allows users to “track attacks on critical race theory” and filter the information as part of an effort to “support anti-racist education, training and research,” according to the school.
The project was created by UCLA’s Critical Race Studies Program, founded in 2000 as the first law school program in the nation dedicated to critical race theory.
Chinese troops will travel to Russia to take part in war games along with India, Belarus, Mongolia, Tajikistan and other largely anti-Western countries, China's defense ministry said on Wednesday, adding redundantly that China's participation in the joint exercises was "unrelated to the current international and regional situation." (Narrator: it is related.)
Last month, Moscow announced plans to hold "Vostok" (East) exercises from Aug. 30 to Sept. 5, even as it wages war in Ukraine. It said at the time that some foreign forces would participate, without naming them. It turns out that the "foreign forces" account for just under half of the world's population.
China's defence ministry said its participation in the exercises was part of an ongoing bilateral annual cooperation agreement with Russia, Reuters reported.
"The aim is to deepen practical and friendly cooperation with the armies of participating countries, enhance the level of strategic collaboration among the participating parties, and strengthen the ability to respond to various security threats," the statement said.
What is perhaps most interesting about the news is that the war games will see India and China participate together, although as the Hindu times notes, it remains unclear if Indian and Chinese troops - hardly the closest of friends - will be present together or if they will participate in different drills, which will be spread across 13 different training grounds.
A couple of days ago, I had the chance to interview my good friend Andy Schectman, President & Owner of Miles Franklin Precious Metals, a company that has done more than $5 billion in sales.
Andy is a world-renowned expert in the field of precious metals and took the time to answer some pressing questions I had about about the state of energy markets in the U.S. and the quickly shifting landscape that the global economy sits on, with the BRIC nations banding together and collectively laughing at the West since the sanctions on Russia went into effect several months ago.
In what can only be described as an extremely disturbing interview that left my jaw agape by the end of it, Andy and I have a frank discussion about:
The price of oil and the country’s response to higher prices
How the Fed is trapped between a rock and a hard place, between inflation and recession right now
The BRIC nations banding together economically and challenging the U.S. dollar as global reserve currency
Andy’s thoughts on how nearly all traditional assets - including stocks, bonds a real estate and the dollar, may wind up “vaporized”
Former President Donald Trump will likely not be arrested on charges stemming from the FBI’s raid last week, according to a former Harvard Law School professor.
“Yes, it’s possible [but] I don’t think it’s going to happen,” Alan Dershowitz told Newsmax on Tuesday about whether Trump would be arrested. People who believe that prosecution and an indictment would keep Trump away from the 2024 campaign are “dead wrong,” he remarked.
“He can run for president even if he’s indicted, convicted, and wearing striped shirts, prison garb,” he added to the channel. “The Constitution provides only four bases for disqualification for president, and being convicted of a crime is not one of them. Congress can’t change the criteria that are in the Constitution for the election of the president.”
Wary of soaring tensions surrounding out-of-favor countries like China, multinational corporations such as Apple are diversifying production to places with less geopolitical risk.
Nikkei Asia spoke to three sources with direct knowledge of Apple's plans to shift Watch and MacBook production out of China to Vietnam for the first time.
Apple suppliers Luxshare Precision Industry and Foxconn have already piloted a production run of the Watch in northern Vietnam.
The move by Apple is a further win for the Southeast Asian country as it already produces iPads and AirPods.
Two sources told Nikkei Asia that Apple had requested suppliers to set up a MacBook test production line in Vietnam. They said progress in constructing laptop production in the country has been "slow, partly due to pandemic-related disruptions but also because notebook computer production involves a larger supply chain."
"AirPods, Apple Watch, HomePod and more ... Apple has big plans in Vietnam, apart from iPhone manufacturing," one of the people with direct knowledge of Apple's plans said. "The components for MacBooks have become more modularized than in the past, which makes it easier to produce the laptops outside of China. But how to make it cost-competitive is another challenge."
Some 5,000 Texans who used a P.O. box as a voter registration address will likely be able to cast a ballot in the state’s midterm elections after a federal judge blocked a 2021 state election law.
Senate Bill 1111 attempted to tighten residency guidelines for Texas voters, but was struck down this month by U.S. District Court Judge Lee Yeakel, an appointee under former president George W. Bush.
Yeakel, who presides over the Austin Division for the Western District of Texas, found in a summary judgement that the state used vague language in the election law and parts of it failed constitutional scrutiny.
Texas’ Attorney General Ken Paxton appealed the decision last week to the 5th Circuit Court of Appeals, according to State Sen. Paul Bettencourt (R-Houston), who authored the election bill.
On Thursday, the Russian Defense Ministry warned that Ukraine is preparing a false flag attack on the Zaporozhye nuclear power plant (NPP) to coincide with UN Chief Antonio Guterres' Ukraine visit, scheduled for Friday.
The Russian Defense Ministry has presented a map with the possible consequences of Kiev's false flag attack on the Zaporozhye nuclear power plant (NPP).
According to the Russian MoD, “the Ukrainian side, together with their US handlers, tries to play the card and cause, in their opinion, a minor accident at the Zaporozhye NPP, disrupting its normal and safe operation and pointing the finger at Russia".
According to the Russian MoD's forecast, if an accident at the Zaporozhye NPP does take place, radioactive substances will engulf Poland, Germany and Slovakia.
European natural gas prices are trading at levels equivalent to about $70 per million British Thermal Unit (BTUs), which is roughly seven times higher than prices in the United States, CNN reported on Wednesday, citing Lipow Oil Associates.
Analysts told the outlet that Europe’s natural gas crisis is contributing to higher prices in America, noting however that it’s not the main driver. US natural gas prices have surged to levels unseen since 2008, closing at $9.33 per million BTU on Tuesday.
“Higher global prices are trickling down to the US. Natural gas has become a global commodity with the emergence of LNG,” said Rob Thummel, senior portfolio manager at Tortoise Capital Advisors.
The United States has stepped up its exports of LNG to Europe in an effort to mitigate the impact of declining flows from the continent’s major natural gas supplier, Russia.
Fifty-one years ago this week, President Richard Nixon slammed shut the “gold window” and eliminated the last vestige of the gold standard.
Nixon ordered Treasury Secretary John Connally to uncouple gold from its fixed $35 price and suspended the ability of foreign banks to directly exchange dollars for gold. During a national television address, on Aug. 15, 1971, Nixon promised the action would be temporary in order to “defend the dollar against the speculators,” but this turned out to be a lie.
The president’s move permanently and completely severed the dollar from gold and turned it into a pure fiat currency.
The First Steps Toward Fiat
Nixon’s order was the end of a path off the gold standard that started during President Franklin D. Roosevelt’s administration. June 5, 1933, marked the beginning of a slow death of the dollar when Congress enacted a joint resolution erasing the right of creditors in the United States to demand payment in gold. The move was the culmination of other actions taken by Roosevelt that year.
In March 1933, the president prohibited banks from paying out or exporting gold, and in April of that same year, Roosevelt signed Executive Order 6102. It was touted as a measure to stop hoarding, but was, in reality, a massive confiscation scheme. The order required private citizens, partnerships, associations and corporations to turn in all but small amounts of gold to the Federal Reserve at an exchange rate of $20.67 per ounce. In 1934, the government’s fixed price for gold was increased to $35 per ounce. This effectively increased the value of gold on the Federal Reserve’s balance sheet by 69%.
Sen. Lindsey Graham (R-S.C.) on Tuesday called for the release of the FBI affidavit that was used to justify the raid of former President Donald Trump’s Florida home.
“We need the affidavit, show your cards, Merrick Garland can’t have it both ways, he can’t give us the inventory of the warrant without telling us why it was necessary … without the affidavit, we’re flying blind in the dark,” Graham said, adding, “The American people are going through too much pain, too much heartache on this endless effort to destroy Donald Trump.”
(L-R) Then-President Donald Trump looks on as Sen. Lindsey Graham (R-S.C.) speaks during an event about judicial confirmations in the East Room of the White House on Nov. 6, 2019. (Drew Angerer/Getty Images)
Graham’s comment came a day after Department of Justice lawyers argued in court that the affidavit should be sealed, including redacted versions of the document, because it would harm the agency’s investigation.
An affidavit would provide more details about the investigation and would provide insight into why the federal government is investigating Trump, including what triggered last week’s raid on Mar-a-Lago.
So far, a U.S. magistrate judge in the case authorized the unsealing of an FBI warrant and property receipt, which showed that agents took materials there were allegedly considered top secret or classified from Trump’s home. The judge, Bruce Reinhart, who in 2008 represented individuals associated with infamous sex trafficker Jeffrey Epstein, scheduled a 1 p.m. Thursday hearing on whether the affidavit and other related documents should be unsealed.
Days ago, we said the next food insecurity problem that may impact Americans' eating habits could be an emerging potato shortage. Now there appears to be another issue: Tomatoes are getting squeezed, and risks of a ketchup shortage rise as a severe drought batter California's farmland.
"We desperately need rain ... and are getting to a point where we don't have inventory left to keep fulfilling the market demand," Mike Montna, head of the California Tomato Growers Association, told Bloomberg.
"It's real tough to grow a tomato crop right now," Montna continued, adding, "on one side you have the drought impacting costs because you don't have enough water to grow all your acres, and then you have the farm inflation side of it with fuel and fertilizer costs shooting up."
The lack of water and the soaring cost of farming appears to be a 'perfect storm' in the making that could result in a shortage of all sorts of tomato-based products, including ketchup, salsa, and spaghetti sauce.
"Self-silencing" — people saying what they think others want to hear rather than what they truly feel — is skewing our understanding of how Americans really feel about abortion, COVID-19 precautions, what children are taught in school and other hot-button issues, a new study finds.
Why it matters: The best predictor of private behavior is private opinion. People's actual views are far more likely than their stated views to drive consumer and social behavior — and voting.
- "When we're misreading what we all think, it actually causes false polarization," said Todd Rose, co-founder and president of Populace, the Massachusetts-based firm that undertook the study. "It actually destroys social trust. And it tends to historically make social progress all but impossible."
The big picture: People are often more moderate than they'll readily admit when "being pulled toward a vocal fringe," whether left or right, Rose said.
Ukrainian government officials are teasing the likelihood of more strikes and 'sabotage operations' inside Russian controlled Crimea, after having cheered on at least two recent large explosions at military sites.
Kiev officials, including President Volodymyr Zelensky himself, are reportedly warning that all civilians should "stay away from potential targets" in Crimea. This follows the Kremlin on Tuesday admitting for the first time that the recent explosions were the "result of sabotage".
Following the latest incident, the Russia's defense ministry said, "On the morning of Aug. 16, as a result of an act of sabotage, a military storage facility near the village of Dzhankoi was damaged."
This is the clearest indication yet that in addition to the Dzhankoi munitions depot blast, the prior Aug.9 massive explosion at Russia's Saky airbase, some 200km deep inside, was also a Ukrainian attack - as some Ukrainian officials had already leaked to US newspapers.
The Saky airbase incident had also set off discussion over whether US-supplied HIMARS rockets could reach that far. If indeed there were foreign weapons systems behind it, it could set the US and Russia on a dangerous path of escalation and collision as the proxy war could fast develop into direct confrontation between superpowers in Ukraine.
A senior White House climate advisor has been sanctioned by the National Academy of Sciences for violating its ethics policies.
Axios reports that Jane Lubchenco, the deputy director for climate and environment at the White House Office of Science and Technology Policy, has been pulled up by the NAS for editing a paper later found to contain technical errors, as well as having worked with the scientists involved in it, one of which turned out to be her brother-in law.
After more than two years of missteps and backpedaling over Covid-19 guidance that had a profound effect on Americans' lives, the Centers for Disease Control (CDC) announced on Wednesday that the agency would undergo a complete overhaul - and will revamp everything from its operations to its culture after failing to meet expectations during the pandemic, Bloomberg reports.
Director Rochelle Walensky began telling CDC’s staff Wednesday that the changes are aimed at replacing the agency’s insular, academic culture with one that’s quicker to respond to emergencies. That will mean more rapidly turning research into health recommendations, working better with other parts of government and improving how the CDC communicates with the public. -Bloomberg
"For 75 years, CDC and public health have been preparing for Covid-19, and in our big moment, our performance did not reliably meet expectations," said Director Rochelle Walensky. "I want us all to do better and it starts with CDC leading the way. My goal is a new, public health action-oriented culture at CDC that emphasizes accountability, collaboration, communication and timeliness."
Federal Reserve officials saw 'little evidence' late last month that US inflation is easing and predicted it would remain elevated for 'some time', newly released minutes from July's policy meeting show.
The minutes released on Wednesday showed policymakers committed to raising rates as high as necessary to bring inflation under control, and acknowledging that they would have accept lower economic growth for that to happen.
Inflation has been running hot and remained near a 40-year high at 8.5 percent in July, despite a rapid series of jumbo interest hikes that have taken the Fed's policy rate from near zero to 2.5 percent.
Joe Rogan compared the hatred that the left has for Florida Gov. Ron DeSantisa to the hatred they have for former President Donald Trump in his latest podcast show.
Rogan was speaking with his guest Seth Dillon, the CEO of the Babylon Bee, when he was asked by Dillon if he thought DeSantis would be command more respect from the left than Trump.
"The left still hates him, but they don't hate him the same way they hated Trump. They tried to but he's more reasonable, he's very like level in the way he talks about things," said Rogan.
"He's firm though, I mean," Dillon interjected.
"Yes, but you know what I'm saying, like, he's not an insulting like character, like Trump's a character. Like part of what he's doing he's doing comedy, it's like he's doing standup when up there, when he makes fun of Biden and makes fun of other people. He's doing f***ing standup, he really is, and he kills," Rogan explained.
Climate science has been so suffocated by ideological zealotry it's becoming difficult just to find normal objective analysis these days. Any piece of data that contradicts the man-made climate change narrative is surrounding by a spin machine that either dismisses the information or obscures it in a deluge of global warming propaganda, inoculating the reader well before they get a chance to digest the news that maybe climate change is not all it's cracked up to be.
Whenever high temperatures are reported in the US or Europe the news is hyperinflated into wild theories of climate Apocalypse by the media, but weather history suggests that the panic is fabricated rather than justified. In fact, any hot weather event you can pick out in recent years is likely overshadowed by a much worse event decades or centuries before “man-made carbon pollution” was ever a thing.
For example, the media is frantic over the current drought and “record temps” in Europe this summer, warning that it could become the “worst drought” in 500 years. Of course, this claim opens the door to a question that climate scientists and propagandists don't want to answer: What happened 500 years ago?
A similar level of global warming hysteria was present during a heat wave in Europe in 2003, as well as in 2018. The few climate scientists still not bought and paid for by governments and the UN have had to point out that these droughts are nothing compared to the living hell that was the drought of 1540. This event is often termed a “mega-drought” because the region suffered historically hot temps while receiving almost no rain for a year.
Upset by Murkowski's vote to impeach him during his second impeachment trial, former President Donald Trump tossed his support behind Kelly Tshibaka. With 50% of precincts reporting, Murkowski topped Tshibaka in the open primary by about 1,500 votes. The top four finishers will advance to the general election due to recent changes to Alaska's voting laws, allowing the incumbent senator to advance to the general.
The Western globalists’ plans to crater their economies so they can finally exert full authoritarian control over their populations has been proceeding at a steady pace, but the African nation of Zimbabwe may have just provided some countries and even some U.S. states with an exit ramp.
According to reports, Zimbabwe began issuing one-ounce gold coins last month as a means of combatting rampant currency deflation, and it was so successful that the country is planning to begin issuing smaller denominations this fall.
“Following the successful launch of the gold coins on 25 July 2022 and in response to public demand, the bank shall introduce and release into the market gold coins in units of a tenth ounce, quarter ounce and half an ounce for sale with effect from mid-November 2022,” Reserve Bank of Zimbabwe governor John Mangudya said this week.