COMING UP SHORT THIS MONTH.
Thought for the day
"I offered my opponents a deal: "if they stop telling lies about me, I will stop telling the truth about them"." -- Adlai Stevenson, campaign speech, 1952
Texas Bexar County Sheriff Javier Salazar made national news on Monday after announcing he was opening an investigation into Florida Governor Ron DeSantis’ actions in sending illegal immigrants to Martha’s Vineyard. Meanwhile, at home, the Sheriff is derelict of duty ignoring a triple murder case.
The cooling system of the Zaporozhye Nuclear Power Plant has been compromised as a result of shelling from Ukrainian troops, Vladimir Rogov, chairman of the We Are Together with Russia civil society group reports.
"The cooling system is impaired, the transformers, the open switchgear. They want to make it impossible to operate," he told Radio of Russia on Wednesday.
Overnight to Wednesday, Ukrainian troops once again shelled the nuclear power plant.
The rift between Brussels and Budapest is getting wider by the day as Viktor Orban’s Hungary is running out of patience for the European Union’s suicidal policies. After years of wrangling and threats from Brussels that it will trigger the much-touted “rule of law” mechanism against the Central European country, it seems the EU is moving towards action, as it cannot allow Hungary to become a precedent that would serve as a “non-compliance” inspiration for other members to follow.
Budapest’s refusal to completely cut ties with Russia seems to be escalating the standoff. As a result, the EU has threatened to freeze approximately €7.5 billion in funds earmarked for Hungary. The unelected bureaucrats from Brussels are using “persisting corruption and fraud” as a pretext for the controversial move.
Hungary under Viktor Orban is often seen as a “rogue state” and the main obstacle to the EU’s futile attempts of isolating Russia. Budapest has been persistent in its demands for exemptions from anti-Russian energy sanctions. As a result, it accomplished retaining relatively cheap energy prices at a time when the rest of the EU is going through economic and financial unraveling thanks to Brussels’ suicidal sanctions war. With what’s sure to be a harsh winter coming in mere months, there is growing conviction among many EU members that the sanctions on Russia have not only failed to produce desired results, but have actually backfired miserably and are ravaging their economies.
Israel’s repeated attacks on Syria have apparently begun to affect the situation along the main frontline in the Golan Heights.
An Israeli attack that targeted the capital of the war-torn country, Damascus, on September 17 resulted in some tensions along the frontline.
Four F-16 fighter jets of the Israeli Air Force carried out the attack from the direction of the Golan Heights. The fighter jets launched four cruise missiles and ten guided glide bombs at the southern outskirts of Damascus. Two missiles and six bombs were successfully intercepted by Syrian Pantsir-S1 and Buk-M2E air defense systems. However, impacts were reported.
Two structures in Damascus International Airport and an air-defense base in the nearby district of al-Kiswah were hit.
The main target of the attack was reportedly the “Lebanon Corps Support Office” of the Iranian Islamic Revolutionary Guard Corps (IRGC). The office allegedly supports pro-Iranian forces in Syria, and more importantly Hezbollah in neighboring Lebanon.
Five Syrian service members were killed as a result of the attack. All of them were reportedly air defense operators.
The German authorities froze Russian assets to the tune of over 4.8 billion euros as of September 16 as part of the sanctions, the Spiegel publication reported on Wednesday citing the Federal Ministry for Economic Affairs and Climate Action.
Of this amount, sums of money account for more than 2.2 billion euros and movable property accounts for more than 1 billion euros. The rest is real estate and "other assets".
In July, the frozen assets amounted to 4.5 billion euros. According to the publication, the German government, within the Ministry of Economic Affairs, set up a special working group to combat the circumvention of sanctions. The ministry explains that commercial banks, insurance companies and other economic entities are responsible for blocking assets as part of the relevant decision of the European Union. The ministry notes that, despite the difficulties in enforcing the sanctions regime, these measures "significantly harm the Russian economy."
An arrest has been made by the U.S. Park Police after a man vandalized the base of the Washington Monument.
Florida Governor Ron DeSantis has responded to a lawsuit brought on by three Martha’s Vineyard migrants and a leftist organization that advocates for illegal aliens.
The casting decision for the lead role in the upcoming live-action adaptation of The Little Mermaid has made Chinese Disney fans furious.
On September 19, Ukrainian militants committed another war crime against civilians in the Donetsk People’s Republic which remained unnoticed by the global media.
In the morning a precise strike hit the bus stop and a grocery store on the Baku Commissars Square in the Kuibyshev district of the city of Donetsk. As a result of the inhumane attack of the Ukrainian military at least 13 civilians were killed, including two children, many more civilians were wounded.
According to the Representative office of the DPR in the JCCC, Ukrainian forces fired 155-mm shells from their positions in the village of Netailovo located 15 kilometers from Donetsk. The attack was carried out with NATO military equipment.
Eyewitnesses say that some of the victims were alive for a moment after the attack. “They crawled until they bled out.”
A Yale School of Management and Yale Chief Executive Leadership Institute study titled “Business Retreats and Sanctions Are Crippling the Russian Economy” was issued in August, and it argues on a fraudulent basis that because (so they allege) “Russia needs world markets as an outlet for its commodity exports far more than the world needs Russian commodity supplies,” Russia will be crushed by Western sanctions that penalize countries that import those commodities from Russia.
What is fraudulent about the report is, first of all, that The West’s war against Russia isn’t a war by ALL nations against Russia, but is ONLY a war by countries that are allied with the U.S. against Russia. If it WERE a war by ALL nations against Russia, then the allegation that “Russia needs world markets as an outlet for its commodity exports far more than the world needs Russian commodity supplies” would be relevant to the outcome of this war, but it’s not. It simply isn’t relevant.
A second fraudulent argument in this Yale study is that Russia is checkmated by the U.S.-allied countries closing down the gas and oil pipelines that have been supplying those commodities to Russia’s biggest market for those commodities, which is the U.S.-allied European countries, and that the reason why Russia is checkmated on this matter is that Russia supposedly won’t be able fast enough to build new pipelines to sell those fuels elsewhere (since these EU nations had been Russia’s main customers for those fuels, and now won’t be buying it). The Yale study supposes that Europe can simply replace Russia’s pipelined gas by liquefied, containerized, shipped, and then re-gassified liquefied natural gas (LNG) from America and other suppliers, but ignores the crucial fact that pipelined gas is far cheaper, which is the reason why Europe was buying so much of it. It’s the main reason why fuel-prices are now soaring in Europe.
Russian servicemen have recently shared several videos from the front lines in different Ukrainian regions, showing how the treat the captured Ukrainian soldiers.
Wounded Ukrainians are often left by their comrades on the battlefields. In turn, Russian servicemen treat prisoners of war in accordance with international military law. All necessary medical care is provided to the wounded. The Russians provide first aid and then transport the wounded from the battlefields to hospitals, where they are treated by Russian doctors. Some seriously wounded Ukrainian soldiers are even transferred to hospitals in Moscow or other major Russian cities, if necessary.
The Ukrainian POWs on the front lines get water and cigarettes.
The videos below were shared by the Russian military from different Ukrainian regions at different time, which confirms that the Ukrainians who lay their weapons are always treated well.
One of the key myths of the twentieth century is the benign role played by international, American-led institutions after the Second World War. American liberals/progressives, fresh from imposing the New Deal in the thirties and planning and directing a world war, turned their eyes to international affairs: the United States had a world historic mission of messianic proportions: lifting developing countries into modernity by remaking them (and all other countries, for that matter) in America’s own image.
The Cold War era was rife with projects and organizations to carry out this vision, from Bretton Woods and the International Monetary Fund (IMF) in the area of international finance to the North Atlantic Treaty Organization (NATO) in military affairs to the CIA-funded Congress for Cultural Freedom used to spread progressive, US-friendly propaganda. These organizations all had mainly deleterious influences—I have previously indicated how Bretton Woods and the modern international financial system can best be described as financial imperialism—but in one area American interventionism is to this day universally acclaimed as benign: the Green Revolution.
Vanderbilt University Medical Center (VUMC) has deleted the website of their Transgender Clinic after journalist Matt Walsh detailed a doctor's promotion of transgender surgeries as a "big money maker" for the institution.
Videos obtained by Walsh also show apparent threats made against VUMC medical professionals who objected to the procedures, even for religious reasons.
Walsh posted his findings in a lengthy Twitter thread on Tuesday. In it, Dr. Shayne Taylor can be seen bragging about how she convinced Nashville to get into gender transitions because it's a "big money maker," especially because the surgeries require a lot of "follow ups."
After much bluster and jawboning, the BOJ's repeated verbal intervention attempts to keep the USDJPY below 145 proved to be nothing but one giant bluff, at least for now.
Asian currencies - especially those like China and Japan refuse to tighten in sympathy - were already under huge pressure on Thursday after the Federal Reserve continued to tighten U.S. monetary policy when the Bank of Japan decided to counter the global tightening trend again, and stuck to its ultraloose stance.
The Japanese yen initially toyed with, then decisively weakened past 145 to the dollar, a fresh 24-year low, after the BOJ said it would maintain its monetary policy under which it is buying unlimited quantities of Japanese government bonds necessary to control the yield curve. And since the BOJ is caught in an impossible dilemma, where it can't maintain Yield Curve Control (i.e., unlimited bond buying and thus currency printing) and a stable currency, Kuroda - whose shock and awe QE legacy is on the line, hyperinflation be damned - has again picked to sacrifice the yen which is in free fall this morning, with some speculating it could plummet as much as 147 today unless the BOJ steps in with intervention.
France is working up to fully nationalizing the currently 84% state-owned nuclear energy company Électricité de France (EDF) at the same time that the company is anticipating a massive downturn in profits.
EDF had already warned investors that its core profits would take a considerable hit this year, but just sharply increased that projected loss to a whopping 29 billion Euros (normally here we would say how much that is in dollars, but the European economy has taken such a downturn – largely thanks to energy woes – that the values of the Euro and the Dollar are virtually identical). The massive loss is thanks to a series of unfortunate events that have led to more than half of EDF’s 56 reactors being taken offline – a record shortage.
France’s nuclear sector has been hit with multiple issues at the worst possible moment. The industry is dealing with a pileup of delays and stoppages thanks to the Covid-19 pandemic, a “series of maintenance issues including corrosion at some of France’s aging reactors, troubles at state-controlled energy group EDF and a years-long absence of significant new nuclear investment,” according to reporting from the Financial Times over the summer. In the few months since that FT report, the situation has grown even worse, as a severe drought has caused rivers around Europe to run dry, leaving some French and Swiss nuclear plants without enough water to keep their systems cool.
Update: The Norges Bank hiked by 50bps to 2.25% as expected. The central bank said that the rate will most likely be raised further in November.
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As Bloomberg's Ven Ram writes, "just a couple of years ago, anyone who was bearish on Treasuries would have been laughed out of the room. But suddenly the mood is deadly serious as the Fed marches us toward a brave new world with a benchmark interest rate approaching, ahem, 5%."
On Wednesday, Powell stuck to the script as expected, with the result that we’re likely to see front-end Treasury yields push higher and higher in the coming months as we near the Fed's "dotted" terminal rate of 4.6%. And while traders still digest Powell's hawkish shock, let’s also take a look at what European central banks might be sending our way.
Starting last month Ukrainian lawmakers began seeking to implement severe consequences for those participating in Russia-sponsored referendums in occupied territories of Ukraine. For example, a law is being pushed through parliament which criminalizes obtaining a Russian passport in temporarily occupied territories, Ukrainian sources reported last week, according to Yahoo News.
Proposed possible punishments have included losing Ukrainian citizenship, or even lengthy jail sentences. But other officials have argued for a more compromising approach given the necessity of survival in occupied areas. But now the Ukrainian government has reiterated its willingness to impose steep penalties for even participating in any Kremlin-sponsored vote to join the Russian Federation.
Bob Bishop and George Rodriguez were on with Jason Goodman at Crowdsource the Truth to discuss the disaster and invasion at the Southern US Border.
The renewable energy revolution just got a whole lot more fun. The Beam Suntory company has announced that it’s going to be increasing its production of Kentucky bourbon using the power of renewable gas. In order to meet the growing demand for whiskey, Jim Beam is going to increase capacity by a whopping 50% at its Booker Noe distillery in Boston, Kentucky while also reducing its greenhouse gas emissions by the same percentage. A recent press release from Jim Beam and its Japanese parent company Suntory announced a $400 million investment in a renewable biogas system.
“This expansion will help ensure we meet future demand for our iconic bourbon in a sustainable way that supports the environment and the local community that has helped build and support Jim Beam,” CEO Albert Baladi said.
If you follow political news, you have probably seen articles claiming that the midterms are looking good for Democrats.
Years of underinvestment in oil and gas production is the leading cause of today’s energy crisis, and when the global economy rebounds from the current slowdown, the little spare oil production capacity that’s left will be wiped out, Saudi Aramco’s chief executive Amin Nasser said on Tuesday.
“Many of us have been insisting for years that if investments in oil and gas continued to fall, global supply growth would lag behind demand, impacting markets, the global economy, and people’s lives,” the CEO of the world’s largest oil company and top oil exporter said at the Schlumberger Digital Forum 2022 in Switzerland today.
New York Attorney General Letitia James is set to make a *major announcement* at 10:30 am ET on Wednesday.
A panel of experts operating under the Department of Health and Human Services has recommended that all adults under the age of 65 should be screened for anxiety disorders, and all adults regardless of age should be checked for depression amid an uptick in American reporting mental-health issues following the Covid-19 pandemic.
Exactly two months ago we predicted that with the economy in shambles as a result of two years of MMT idiocy, inflation soaring, unemployment about to explode, markets crashing, Biden clueless what year it is, and so on, that "Democrats Prepare To Unleash Hell On Fed Chair Powell For The Coming Recession".
And moments ago the most outspoken Indian among the Democrats proved us right, when Lizzie Warren threw the first tomahawk at the Marriner Eccles building: "Chair Powell just announced another extreme interest rate hike while forecasting higher unemployment. I’ve been warning that Chair Powell’s Fed would throw millions of Americans out of work — and I fear he’s already on the path to doing so."
Federal Reserve rate hikes will add trillions to the national debt, according to an analysis by the Committee for a Responsible Federal Budget.
The Fed delivered another 75-basis point rate-hike during its September FOMC meeting this afternoon and made it clear that rates will be 'higher for longer' to fight persistently high inflation. According to the Committee for a Responsible Budget (CFRB), rate hikes will add another $2.1 trillion to the national debt over the next decade.
United Nations Secretary-General António Guterres gave a grim assessment of global developments on Tuesday, September 20th. Guterres said that we are looking at a fairly gloomy and dark upcoming “winter of global discontent” from rising prices, a warming planet, and deadly conflicts.
“Our world is in peril,” Guterres told the opening of the United Nation’s 193-member annual assembly in New York. “A winter of global discontent is on the horizon,” Guterres said according to a report by Euractiv.
According to the UN’s assessment, countries are “gridlocked in colossal global dysfunction” and are increasingly not ready or willing to tackle the major challenges. “Trust is crumbling, inequalities are exploding, our planet is burning. People are hurting – with the most vulnerable suffering the most,” he added, presenting the annual report on the work of the body. “The United Nations Charter and the ideals it represents are in jeopardy,” he said.
The UN claimed that cooperation and dialogue are the only paths forward, he warned that “no power or group alone can call the shots”. But we know what they mean is that the ruling classes and masters of the planet will call the shots, not the people being ruled over.
Thanks to Establishment media, the sorcerer apprentices advising President Joe Biden – I refer to Secretary of State Antony Blinken, national security adviser Jacob Sullivan, and China specialist Kurt Campbell – will have no trouble rallying Americans for the widest war in 77 years, starting in Ukraine, and maybe spreading to China. And, shockingly, under false pretenses.
Most Americans are oblivious to the reality that Western media are owned and operated by the same corporations that make massive profits by helping to stoke small wars and then peddling the necessary weapons. Corporate leaders, and Ivy-mantled elites, educated to believe in U.S. "exceptionalism," find the lucre and the luster too lucrative to be able to think straight. They deceive themselves into thinking that (a) the US cannot lose a war; (b) escalation can be calibrated and wider war can be limited to Europe; and (c) China can be expected to just sit on the sidelines. The attitude, consciously or unconsciously, "Not to worry. And, in any case, the lucre and luster are worth the risk."
The media also know they can always trot out died-in-the-wool Russophobes to "explain," for example, why the Russians are "almost genetically driven" to do evil (James Clapper, former National Intelligence Director and now hired savant on CNN); or Fiona Hill (former National Intelligence Officer for Russia), who insists "Putin wants to evict the United States from Europe … As he might put it: "Goodbye, America. Don’t let the door hit you on the way out."