About That Batumi Miracle…

Uncle Volodya says, "Honesty may be the best policy, but it's important to remember that apparently, by elimination, dishonesty is the second-best policy."

Uncle Volodya says, “Honesty may be the best policy, but it’s important to remember that apparently, by elimination, dishonesty is the second-best policy.”

Hey, remember back when Al Jazeera was the object of loathing and fear in the USA? Bankrolled by the Emir of Qatar – a thriving democracy in the Middle East whose ruler has been a male member of the Al Thani family since 1850 – Al Jazeera was once described by American media as “a mouthpiece for terrorists”, “anti-Semitic” and “anti-American”. It earned the anti-Semitic tag honestly enough, broadcasting an on-air birthday party organized by Al Jazeera’s Beirut bureau chief for a Lebanese militant convicted of killing four Israelis, including a four-year-old girl. And considering it was the outlet which carried Sheik Qaradawi’s weekly program, “Sharia and Life” and Sheik Qaradawi “extended his Koranic blessing to suicide bombing against American civilians in Iraq”, you could make an argument that it earned the anti-American tag honestly as well.

No more, though – all water under the bridge, let bygones be bygones. The outlet’s managers could not now be more pro-American, as this gushing testimonial to Mikheil Saakashvili’s appointment as Odessa’s governor attests. Penned by former United States Army officer Luke Coffey, it is a progressive tongue bath of Saakashvili that is almost embarrassing to read, kind of like watching a bizarre peep show featuring repugnant sex. Unless you’re an admirer of the former Georgian president, of course, in which case it is only his due as the Caesar Of His Time; render unto Caesar the things that are Caesar’s.

Coffey pitches a quick little historical vignette, describing how observers and analysts should not be surprised at Poroshenko’s appointment of a foreigner to lead Odessa, since that was de rigeuer back in 1803. Two French noblemen were appointed during this period, the first by Tsar Alexander himself, as governors of Odessa. These appointments join wife selling, tobacco smoke enemas, lobotomy and the Divine Right of Kings as examples of a progressive society, for the period in which they were common.

But when you top that historical precedent with Mikheil Saakashvili’s success in fighting corruption and improving the Georgian economy, why, as Mr. Coffey avers, the appointment “makes perfect sense”.

Mikheil Saakashvili’s success in fighting corruption and improving the Georgian economy; my, yes. Let’s take a look at that. Especially as Mr. Coffey avers that President Poroshenko appointed Misha specifically to clean up corruption in Odessa; you may want to keep an eye on that, see how he’s doing, from time to time. Mr. Coffey must have had an affectionate little smile on his face as he thought about Misha’s charisma, he positively oozes it. And energy, too – he’s engaging, and “has endless amounts of energy”. I think I can explain that last bit, as his increasingly porcine appearance suggests he is living on a diet of candy bars. Corruption-fighting by Cadbury.

Some more licking follows, as Saakashvili is described as a visionary who gravitated to Ukraine because it was the only way he could help the country of his birth that for some unaccountable reason wants to arrest him for corruption and various other allegations. Yes, you heard it here first: “…he understands that the geopolitical reality of the Black Sea means that a secure Odessa is a secure Georgia. For him, this is part of his destiny”. Jesus wept; I don’t know if I can finish this.

Mr. Coffey is fond of statistics to back up his claims, and that’s good. According to him, the Index of Economic Freedom – compiled by a conservative right-wing Washington think tank and an ideological conservative newspaper – just loves Mikheil Saakashvili for how easy he made it to do business in Georgia. And it hardly needs saying that Transparency International – supported by Shell International, Microsoft, Google, BP and General Electric, among others – saw him as a mythic corruption-fighter of epic proportions, like Batman, The Flash and Diogenes all rolled into one charismatic, energetic package.

I wonder what those organizations think of the current Georgian President. He does not seem to get a mention, nor does the government of Bidzina Ivanishvili, who headed the Georgian Dream party that knocked the charismatic corruption-fighting dynamo off his perch. Because Saakashvili’s crime-fighting spree coincided with record unemployment in Georgia: it was 12.6% when he took office, zoomed to nudge 17% under his able command, and was still 15% when he was ignominiously kicked out of office. It’s back down to 12.4% now. But Mikheil Saakashvili is credited with being “the one reason Georgia did not become a failed state”. You can’t see me, but I am doing that fingers-down-the-throat gagging thing.

Similarly, Georgia’s per-capita GDP is currently at a record high. So are monthly wages , which reached their record low in 2007, while Saakashvili was apparently too busy fighting corruption to look after his subjects. Wages in manufacturing – a critical component in national self-sufficiency –  same story: record high at present, record low under the Cadbury Dynamo. So weary from fighting corruption around the clock, it escaped his attention that his Defense Minister had started up an offshore business in his own name which roared from a paltry $8 Million and something USD in turnover in 2009 – the year he started it up – to nearly a Billion in 2012, three years of non-stop, rolling-in-moola corruption right under Saakashvili’s nose. The profits before taxes (taxes, ha, ha) that year amounted to more than $51 Million USD. That year, the per-capita GDP for Georgia – what your average Georgian would have to live on and support his family for a year, adjusted for purchasing power – was $6,322.50 USD.

But don’t let my stage-setting implant any preconceived notions, as we step uncritically and with open minds into the showpiece of Saakashvili’s renaissance of the Georgian economy – The Batumi Miracle.

“[T]he capital city [of the Adjara Region], Batumi, is booming. Foreign Direct Investment is flowing in. Five-star hotels mark the skyline. The old city has been rebuilt and preserved“, enthuses Coffey. Really? You know, I’m coming around to Mr. Coffey’s viewpoint. Mikheil Saakashvili actually is the one reason Georgia did not become a failed state. Because if he had won another term, it would have been. He saved Georgia, by getting thrown out of office.

The roof of the Batumi Trade Center – a Saakashvili project of which he laid the foundation stone himself in 2010collapsed in 2012, doing about 25,000 Lari (about $11,000.00 USD at today’s exchange rate) in damages. Fortunately it happened at night, when the building was empty.

But nothing says Sweet Smell of Saakashvili Success in Batumi – a miracle, if I may be so bold – like the Batumi Technological University. The American Technological University, as some referred to it, since it was built with American money from the Second Compact with the Millennium Challenge Corporation. MCC itself, if you can imagine the cheek, was unconvinced that Saakashvili’s bold plan to build a technological university was a sensible or justifiable expenditure of grant money (some of that Foreign Direct Investment cash that “flowed in”, according to Mr. Coffey). No, they argued (shortsighted fools) that building a technological university would be more likely to benefit privileged families than poor families, that the money would be better spent on addressing systemic failures in higher education, and refused to approve the project.BatumiTower

And this is where Saakashvili proved his worth as a guy who won’t be told “No”. Undaunted by the unseemly quibbling over poor people’s educational opportunities, he played the wild card that sucked all the air out of the room – our technological university will have the world’s only miniature Ferris Wheel. How do you like me now, bean-counting eggheads?

Of course it did not happen just like that; I have no idea if the Ferris Wheel was Saakasvili’s idea or the architect’s – although Saakashvili would most certainly have seen the designs – and it was not the addition of this feature that swayed the decision. But just imagine it: struggling all day with difficult technological problems, and then the glorious rush of freedom at the end of the academic day – all the students rushing for the roof, shouting “Me first!!” “No, me!!”. And then whirling around and around high above the earth…what a great way to blow American taxpayers’ money!!

Honestly; what kind of lunatic spends that kind of money on a Ferris Wheel on the roof of a technological university, in a country where the average citizen lives on about $6000.00 a year, after being told by the donors it was a stupid idea? The kind of lunatic who would be perfect for fighting corruption in Odessa, obviously.

Saakashvili opened the Batumi Technological University in 2012, just before the Georgian Dream wave rolled over him and swept him away. It was to have its first students in 2013. The incoming government studied the madcap project, and scrapped it. The new government requested proposals for improvements to the higher-education sector – just like MCC had initially suggested – and announced the intent to co-fund successful proposals with $50 million over 20 years. After spending more than $30 Million USD to build it (plus around $90,000.00 USD annually in maintenance in 2012 and 2013, Saakashvili’s ivory tower was sold for $25 Million, to be turned into a hotel.

Where a little Ferris Wheel just might be almost appropriate. Good luck, Odessa. Remember, it’s easy to ride the tiger. The hard part is getting off.

This entry was posted in Corruption, Economy, Education, Europe, Georgia, Government, Investment, Saakashvili, Ukraine and tagged , , , , , , , , . Bookmark the permalink.

2,224 Responses to About That Batumi Miracle…

  1. et Al says:

    Al Beeb s’Allah GONAD (God’s Own News Agency Direct): US announces new tank and artillery deployment in Europe

    http://www.bbc.co.uk/news/world-europe-33238004

    US Defence Secretary Ashton Carter said the equipment would be placed in Bulgaria, Estonia, Latvia, Lithuania, Poland and Romania…

    …On a visit to the Estonian capital, Tallinn, Mr Carter said each set of equipment would be enough either for a military company, or about 150 soldiers, or a battalion – roughly 750 soldiers.

    Much of the equipment was already in Europe, officials said…

    …According to a fact-sheet provided by the US military, the deployment would include 250 tanks, Bradley fighting vehicles and self-propelled howitzer artillery guns….

    …The US has also pledged intelligence, logistical and a range of other support to Nato’s new very-high-readiness reaction force. But the message from Washington is clear. It still expects its Nato allies to take on their share of bolstering the alliance’s defences….
    ###

    US SecDef Ashole blows hard. It’s rather underwhelming. Of all the resources at NATO’s disposal, this is really pathetic, but follows NATO’s strategy of hyping their minimal efforts as maximal in the hope that Russia would massively overreact.

    I suspect that it is again a lowest common denominator decision by the NATO Council. It’s intent is as much to poke Bear as give assurance.

    If you look at the details, they are being very careful with quantities and placements and keeping in strict line with the Conventional Forces Treaty that Russia has more or less quit. Why are they still doing this? Because it is in NATO’s favor, the political and economic consequences of dumping the CFE are unpredictable to say the least.

    This appears to be more worrying, until yet again you look at the detail:

    Flightglobal; US report calls for dual-capable F-35C and tactical nukes
    http://www.flightglobal.com/news/articles/us-report-calls-for-dual-capable-f-35c-and-tactical-413936/

    A US think tank has proposed installing nuclear weapons on the Lockheed Martin F-35C Joint Strike Fighter for deployment aboard aircraft carriers as a hedge against Russia and China….

    …Murdock believes the “nuclear umbrella” the United States extends to its allies is more effective and reassuring when it is planted in allied territory instead of relying solely on long-range nuclear bombers, ballistic missiles and submarines.

    According to the US Air Force, the first full-up B61-12 nuke will be assembled by 2020 and early aircraft integration activities with the F-35A are due to begin next year. The current time line would see the F-35A achieve dual-capable status by 2024 as part of the Block 4 configuration…

    …Murdock’s analysis also concludes that America needs to field range of nuclear weapons, at least one for every rung of the nuclear escalatory ladder, from low-yield, tactical nukes right up to those capable of mass destruction. The current US strategy favours a massive retaliatory response as the primary deterrent against a nuclear attack, leading some to question how the West will respond in the event of a lower-lever crisis….

    …The conversation about the strategic nuclear force structure comes as the US Defense Department embarks on a major recapitalisation of its nuclear triad, which critics and supports alike say is unaffordable…
    ####

    There’s a reason they put the crazies in Think Tanks, the same with ‘dissidents’ at the BBC. An eye can be kept on them. Guys like this are still living in the 1980s.

    Firstly, cash. This is not monkey nuts. Second, time (depends on money obviously). Third, this capability is probably already slated for the F-35, but not publicized. Once the F-16 tactical nuke squadrons in Belgium, The Netherlands et al (not me) retire their F-16s, there is quite probably going to be a capability gap but there is one thing the US hates, loosing capability. NATO wants to reintroduce upgraded nukes to Europe but knows that it will be extremely politically sensitive for most countries. That is one strand of NATO pumping up the Russian threat – terrify the Europeans and soften them up for new nukes. Resistance will be much tougher in western Europe, so where would the new nukes go? The Balts and Poland have to be the prime possibility. The Russians know all this so what we have is latent potential nuclear blackmail and game of chicken with Russia. It’s NATO’s extremely risky counter move to Russia not giving NATO a free reign, and it is right there on the table. No one has curiously told the European public yet, but that is no surprise from the Pork Pie News Networks.

    Here’s a nice pic of a special livery Transaero 747-400F, the same company that just announce at the Paris airshow they would by 20 747-8Fs. Sanctions, shmankshions!

    http://www.flightglobal.com/assets/getasset.aspx?itemid=62187

  2. et Al says:

    ABCNudes: Putin Slams Group Warning Russians Against Visiting Crimea
    http://abcnews.go.com/International/wireStory/putin-slams-group-warning-russians-visiting-crimea-31964932

    …Putin was referring to the Society for Protection of Consumer Rights, a little-known Russian watchdog that has caused uproar with its advice to Russians to stay away from the Black Sea peninsula…

    … It warned that Russians visiting Crimea without Ukrainian authorities’ permission could face criminal punishment in Ukraine. It argued that Russia’s annexation of Crimea violated both international law and treaties Russia signed with Ukraine.

    The group previously had focused on monitoring the quality of goods and services and hadn’t been involved in politics…
    ###

    WTF? Is this a prank?

  3. et Al says:

    Neuters: International tribunal looks like best chance for MH17 justice – Dutch source
    http://uk.reuters.com/article/2015/06/23/uk-ukraine-crisis-mh17-exclusive-idUKKBN0P325S20150623

    …The chance of a successful prosecution is considered slim at best but the Dutch still hope that, by pushing for a U.N.-style court with the backing of Western allies, they could pressure Russia, whose role in the process is critical, into cooperating….

    …the government is under intense pressure to act from a public who mostly believe Russia either shot down the plane or supplied the rocket to those who did….

    …And, while Dutch law provides a form of universal jurisdiction for war crimes, the downing of a civilian airliner during a civil war, possibly by mistake, is not a good legal fit. Malaysia, the flight’s destination, is even farther from the crime scene…

    …the prosecutors have narrowed their focus to the theory that the plane was shot down by a Russian-built BUK surface-to-air missile fired from an area held by pro-Russian forces…

    ..Experts have cited radio intercepts, photo and video material and satellite imagery as evidence that the rebels shot down MH17 with an advanced BUK missile system that was transported from Russian territory shortly before the incident.

    This raises the possibility that Russian nationals could be named in the indictment; the Dutch have not named anyone but say they are looking at all possible avenues of inquiry…

    …The closest analogy might be the 1988 Lockerbie bombing, when Pan Am flight 103 was blown out of the sky over Scotland, killing all 243 people onboard…
    ####

    So a lot of ‘what ifs’ and very little facts. I’m glad they mentioned Lockerbie – it’s where someone planted a piece of timer circuit board to get the right result. It’s most likely that the PFLP-GC wot did it too.

    • Cortes says:

      And Mr Al Megrahi DID get a fair trial “under Scots law” in the Netherlands 😳

    • marknesop says:

      Yes, thanks for that little blast from the past, so to speak; the evidence which convicted a Libyan was indeed alleged by a reliable witness to have been planted by CIA agents for the express purpose of fingering the Libyan agent who was convicted. It’s a useful reminder to us all for whenever someone implies this or that plot was perpetrated by the CIA, and the western response is loud derisive laughter or an embarrassed silence that suggests they are wondering what you are doing outside unsupervised, since the CIA would never do such a thing. They would, and they have, rationalizing all the while that it is for the greater good since American leadership is good for the world.

  4. Putin’s childhood friend (at least he claims to be one) who now lives in Gorlovka says that Putin is a traitor and has abandoned eastern Ukrainians.

    • What he says is that
      – He used to still like Putin a year ago and most of the Donbass residents considered Putin as a “god” a year ago.
      – Now all of this has changed. Donbass people are cursing Putin at the moment. Putin provoked a war in Donbass as a cover for his Crimean operation.
      – Putin’s “loud promises” (Russian parliament authorized Putin to use military force in Ukraine in the spring of 2014) encouraged Donbass residents to an armed rebellion but Putin never delivered his promises and in fact the law of using military force in Ukraine was withdrawn after Crimea was securely with Russia.. Donbass people were simply used as a cannon fodder to secure Crimea for Russia.
      – Every morning the Donbass people wake up hoping that Russia has finally started sendings its troops to Donbass (as was promised in the spring of 2014) but it is never going to happen. People of Donbass have finally realized this and now “they spit when they even hear a word Russia”.
      – Russia has betrayed Donbass. In a year Russia’s rhetoric has changed dramatically. A year ago Russia was saying that Russia will never abandon their compatriots. They will be protected. Now Russia is just silent and says nothing as Kiev bombards Donbass.

      He may be fake but I think he sounds sincere in this video. And I share his thoughts. I think Donbass was used as a cover to make the West “forget” about Crimea. Crimea was all that Russia ever wanted and Donbass people were made out to be the fools who spilled their blood for Russian ambitions in Crimea.

      This is why I think Donbass should now surrender to Kiev. Not because it is a honorable thing to do. Not because I like the Kiev junta (I hate them). It needs to be done to teach Russia a lesson. Russia did the dishonorable thing for the Donbass people and this is why Donetsk should host a NATO military base.

      • marknesop says:

        I realize this is a popular theme for you, that Putin should place himself at the head of the Russian army and lead them in a lunge for Kiev – one which would unquestionably succeed, as all of Ukraine would fall to the Russians in a week if they chose to take it. But then what? They would have conquered a large, desperately poor country for which they would have assumed responsibility, conveniently identifying Russia as the international pariah the west paints it into the bargain.

        I have agreed any number of times that it was a mistake for Putin to say that Russia would protect Russian-speakers, and he acknowledged it was a mistake by asking the Duma to revoke the authority to use the Russian military to do so in hope that it would avert violence. But who, really, could have foreseen that not only would the Ukrainian state use its military to butcher and slaughter civilians in a determined effort to force their servitude to the state, but that the western world – supposed sympathetic defender of rebel movements and unilateral declarations of independence, let freedom ring, bla, bla – would stand quietly by and make no effort to stop it. Moreover, would encourage it.

        Your solution would punish the Donbas and reward the junta with success, and at the same time blame Putin for causing the whole thing in the first place. Elegant. It is not Russia’s fault that Ukrainians are slaughtering their brothers next door, and not only is it not Russia’s responsibility to stop it, Russia is under strict orders from western leaders not to intervene in any way, shape or form, while every day there are more accusations that Russia is interfering because the Ukrainian army didn’t win that day. Yet somehow, your pick for blame in the whole thing is…Russia. Not Kiev, for doing the unthinkable – no! they should be rewarded with capitulation. Not the west for encouraging the continued slaughter, in which they have to make up crazy stories that Putin is burning his thousands of dead soldiers in mobile crematoriums to cover the fact that no Russian dead have been found and the greatest proportion of casualties are civilians, many of them women and children. No; it’s Russia’s fault, for not launching an armed intervention to put right a wrong Russia had no part in causing, in the process risking the destruction of the Russian people as a whole.

        • bolasete says:

          i think part of the problem is that the fate, even the lives of those in the northern hemisphere, could be decided by how the us vs russia standoff is resolved. both an article at the saker that i believe i linked here once (http://vineyardsaker.blogspot.com/2014/12/is-russia-ideal-enemy-for-western.html) and one at fortruss (http://fortruss.blogspot.com/2015/03/the-end-of-history-third-way-and.html) deal with the underlying dynamic succinctly. big war is on the menu and only the elites want it.

          • marknesop says:

            Yes, Washington will happily drive Europe into a disastrous recession in its efforts to have its own way. The best chance of averting something really nasty is in Europe realizing that and refusing to go along. I was reminded of that while reading this counterclaim to Curt’s blithe declaration that Russia’s reciprocal sanctions were of no consequence and that such a massive economy could easily absorb them. They’re looking at a half-million job losses in Germany alone. I don’t think job losses figured in his calculation at all, and he gave some comical figure like $100 Million. This study was not done by the low-trust liars with no credibility because of their Mongol roots, either.

          • Tim Owen says:

            Feels like it. In my bones.

        • Cortes says:

          How pissed off the engineers of the “western ” strategy must be to have their expectations re Russian responses to having their latest Baldrick like “cunning plans” confounded time and again. Almost as if those retard Moskal scions of Mongol/Tatar/random bearers of epicanthic folds and Mongol birthmarks were real human beings. damn their evil souls.

      • Fern says:

        This gentleman – Putin’s childhood friend – may be sincere but so what? A lot of people sincerely believe the earth is flat but that doesn’t make it so. It simply isn’t correct to say that Putin provoked a war in the Donbas to secure Crimea. Does Putin control the Kiev government (I’m using that term loosely) because it was their actions, particularly in Mariupol and Odessa against protestors who’d been mirroring the Maidan – occupying government buildings and so on – which lead to a violent reaction from people in Lugansk and Donetsk. Kiev could have stopped this assault on the East at any time – is it Russia that’s been preventing them from doing so?

        The Crimeans secured Crimea for Russia so, again, it’s simply incorrect to say that people of the Donbas were used as canon-fodder to achieve reunification. We know now that Russia undertook covert opinion polls to determine whether a majority of Crimeans would support re-joining Russia. Personally, I don’t believe Russia would have gone ahead if there had not been overwhelming support, it would have been just too difficult with an at best indifferent or, at worse, an actively hostile population. Crimea was secured pretty much without a shot being fired – so why did securing it require Putin to begin a war in the Donbas? The argument makes no sense.

        That said, I think Putin can be legitimately be criticised for his apparent promise to protect civilians in the East – this may, indeed, in the early stages of the conflict, have encouraged some people to take up arms. But not now though and not for some considerable time. And we don’t know his motives for saying what he did – maybe he thought that fear of provoking a Russian military response would deter Kiev in the way that Georgia has been deterred from military adventures against South Ossetia.

        Russia’s been providing food, shelter and jobs to a huge number of refugees; its humanitarian aid deliveries are the one thing that’s stood between a dire situation for the people of Lugansk and Donetsk and a humanitarian catastrophe on a scale not seen in Europe since WW2. And Russia is not silent about the situation in Ukraine – it’s mentioned every time Putin, Lavrov, Churkin and other members of Russia’s political elite speak. Russia has always been clear that its preferred solution is for Lugansk and Donetsk to remain part of Ukraine under some sort of federal structure. Putin’s never held out the hope of incorporation into Russia or of supporting Novorossiya’s path to a new, independent state so cries of ‘betrayal’ are not warranted.

        • marknesop says:

          We are on completely the same page on this; well said. Speaking of Russian aid and humanitarian crises, has anyone heard any news on the water situation in Lugansk?

  5. astabada says:

    I realized one of my previous messages had broken links. Since rkka raised again the topic of Russian demographics, I thought it would be useful to repost it, this time with the correct links. Following is the original message, but I’ve spared you my observations.

    A while ago I did a plot comparing the population of a few post-communist countries:
    (Figure)

    It shows the total population according to World Bank data. The values are normalised to the year 1991, to highlight relative trends since that crucial year.

    The code and the data to make the plot are available at:
    here (python implementation) and
    here (relevant World Bank data)

  6. yalensis says:

    Important victory for Russia:

    A 29-year-old Russian lady named Liudmila Matua won the beauty pageant called Mrs. Planet for 2015.
    Matua is from the city of Rostov-on-Don, and works as a secretary for the Minister of Technology and Information.
    The Mrs. Planet competition features married women between the ages of 20 to 40, from 50 different countries around the world.

    The competition is very rigorous and lasts for a whole week. Matua won the category of “Best Body” and also the overall title.

    This other piece shows photo of the winner and the 2 runners-up. But it doesn’t give their names, and I couldn’t find much other information.

  7. yalensis says:

    Article about Liquified Natural Gas (LNG) terminal in Lithuania.
    In Klaipėda, Lithuania, there is this LNG terminal named “Independence”. The name intending to signify Lithuania’s independence from Russian gas.
    It was originally planned that the LNG would be sold to Estonia and Latvia. But the latter 2 countries don’t want to buy it, since this LNG is one and half times more expensive than good old-fashioned Russian gas.
    Not being able to sell the LNG, the company which owns the terminal, which is called “Klaipėdos nafta”, turned to the Norwegian company named Statoil, which is actually the source of the natural gas, in the first place. (Turns out the gas is Norwegian, and then the Liths do something to it.)
    So, “Klaipėdos nafta” asked Statoil if the latter could not sell them quite as much gas, since they can’t re-sell all of it.
    However, it seems they are stuck, because they have a long-term contract, whereby Norwegian Statoil delivers to Lithuania annually 540 million cubic meters of natural gas. This is the minimum required amount that Lithuania MUST buy annually, according to the contract, whether they need it or not.

    Coming out of the pipe, Norwegian gas only costs between 328.9 and 365.5 dollars for 1,000 cubic meters. However, doing whatever they do it at the terminal adds a cost of 145 dollars for each 1,000 cubic meters. This includes the cost of renting the terminal and also the amortization cost of the equipment. The process of liquifying and compressing adds a cost of additional 60 dollars per 1,000 cubic meters. After that, to squeeze a very tight margin, the Lithuanian company must charge between 539 and 576 dollars per 1,000 cubic meters. Compare that to the Gazprom price for regular Russian gas, which comes to $370.

    • marknesop says:

      You have to hand it to Grybauskaitė – she certainly has a nose for business. Unfortunately, it’s on the front of a big oval of cedar. Good luck with that, Lithuania. It’s a good example for Poland’s terminal, which Sikorski pointed out might generate gas which is more expensive, but at least they can put a Polish flag on it. I’m sure the consumers who see their gas prices achieve escape velocity will appreciate the sentiment, and smile in approval as they pay their new gigantic bills.

    • et Al says:

      I think that Poland did something similar with Qatar.

      http://www.reuters.com/article/2013/09/09/poland-energy-lng-idUSL6N0H22WR20130909

      …Szczesniak estimated the Qatari price to be 40-50 percent higher than that charged by Russian gas producer Gazprom . A senior energy executive in Poland suggested the premium was even higher…
      ###

      Dipshitz.

      • marknesop says:

        An extra $325 Million a year, if the price doesn’t go up. Fookin’ brilliant, that. Pride cometh expensive, what? Some would say there was a fine line between proud and stupid. And many of those rendering such a judgment would be Poles, reading their gas bill. If they were going to lose their minds altogether on a diet of their hate, why didn’t they go for a non-hydrocarbon-based energy supply?

  8. Moscow Exile says:

    Further to what our gobshite visitor resident in Lemberg and Kiev was saying:

    • kat kan says:

      Losses to the economy of course are much larger. That money didn’t come in. So that money didn’t get spent in local shops. So their sales are down, so their suppliers (and staff) suffer. In turn, those sell less so buy less….. it can easily double the loss internally, and create massive unemployment in rural areas. Then there’s extra losses when the Government has to fork out additional unemployment or other benefits because of this.

      Substitution is not instant. Animals need to grow to adulthood before they can reproduce. Fruit trees don’t yield commercial quantities for up to 10 years. But short crops like most grains and vegetables can be substituted in 6 to 8 months. Conversely, the exporter must find a new market in a few months or the last harvest goes rotten.

      In exchange for this, a few Russian companies had to do some juggling to borrow, and a few oligarchs are not allowed to travel. Reminds me of a story of an oligarch a few years ago who could not travel to his god-daughter’s wedding in Cyprus. He just chartered an airliner to bring 200+ wedding party to his estate in Russia for a 3-day second reception. Cop that, EU!!!

    • kirill says:

      I question these numbers if they are supposed to represent the initial losses. I recall the estimate for Canada to have been around $700 million. These numbers may be net numbers after these countries found alternative markets.

    • marknesop says:

      Yes, that’s the same story.

    • et Al says:

      I’ll repeat the story I posted a few weeks ago here as it seems apposite.

      Gazprom signed a long term deal with major British energy provider Centrica whilst on the other hand the British Government is forcing Mikhail Fridman to sell the North Sea assets he recently bought from the German firm Wintershall.

      https://secure.marketwatch.com/story/centrica-extends-gas-deals-with-gazprom-statoil-2015-05-13

      …A three-year supply deal that came into effect last year with Gazprom Marketing & Trading Ltd., a U.K. subsidiary of the state-owned gas giant, has been expanded from 2.4 bcm to 4.16 bcm per year, and will now run until 2021. ..

      http://www.rigzone.com/news/oil_gas/a/138192/Britain_Orders_Sale_Of_Russian_Billionaire_Fridmans_North_Sea_Fields

      …Britain’s first such order in the sector follows LetterOne’s acquisition of the fields last month as part of a 5.1 billion euro takeover of RWE’s DEA oil unit. Prime Minister David Cameron opposed the purchase of the British fields….

      As someone said in a film, Dat shit is fucked up.

      • et Al says:

        Sorry, there is a method in my previous post. The UK is missing from the list above. Being one of the most apparently Russophobic states, it still yings and yangs when it comes to cold hard cash (sic – Londongrad), close to its beating (f)art.

        All I’m saying is smoke ‘n’ mirrors. Sort of.

  9. yalensis says:

    Latest Shariy video debunking the story about the supposedly captured Russian soldier “Dmitry Simonchik”:

    http://www.vzgliad.ru/news/2015/6/24/752504.html

    • yalensis says:

      The basic gist is that Ukrainian media, starting with “Mirotvorets” (which is Avakov’s rat-fink online hitlist) took photos of a Russian soldier from 2010, changed the dates, and made it look like he was fighting and killed in Donbass this year.

      • yalensis says:

        P.S. – as coup de grace, Shariy interviews the actual guy (alive and well), whom Ukies said was dead.

  10. yalensis says:

    Meanwhile, back in France, Marine Le Pen is up in arms about recent Wikileaks indicating that Americans wire-tapped all the Presidents of France, starting with Jacques Chirac, and continuing onto Sarkozi and Hollande.
    According to Le Pen, these wiretapping activities undermine French sovereignty, independence, and security.
    And she demands some form of payback, like withdrawing from alliances.
    She says that the U.S. is neither a good friend, nor an ally to France. It is too hegemonistic.

    The U.S. reacted by somewhat denying that they wiretapped François Hollande.
    NSC Spokesperson Ned Price declared that they have no interest in listening to Hollande’s conversations.

  11. yalensis says:

    Meanwhile, back in Ukraine:
    Ukrainian nationalists are desperately scouring their History books for some victory over Russia that they can celebrate. They have settled on the Battle of Konotop from 1659. Ukrainians have decided to make a big deal out of the military victory and set up a monument celebrating the 365th anniversary of this battle. [yalensis: I think that is a typo in Navigator, the right number should be 356. ’cause if I substract 1659 from 2015, do I not get a difference of 356?? Not 365. ]

    Anyhow, math problems aside, a quick wiki shows that the combined Ukrainian-Polish-Tatar victory at Konotop was just another one of the pyrrhic victories for the Ukie side.

    They defeated the Russian army in one battle, true.
    But ultimately Russia prevailed. Vyhovsky was forced to flee to Poland, where the Poles executed him in 1664. “His defeat is largely attributed to his alliance with the very unpopular Poles and his inability to seek support among all the strata of the Ukrainian population and not just among the rich Cossack elite, who were willing to betray him at every opportunity either to Moscow or Warsaw. The civil war raged on and the victors of the Konotop battle were soon forgotten.”

    Moral of the story:
    Ukrainians can never formulate a good plan.
    Because they always keep shifting their alliances, and end up ticking EVERYBODY off!

    • cartman says:

      Neither can the Poles. They invaded Russia, Galacia, Lithuania, and Czechoslovakia in a very short time. Then they complain for seven decades about how they were “betrayed.”

      Also that coin on the wiki page was issued in 2009. Probably another provocation from Yuschenko.

  12. marknesop says:

    Ooooooo….Mr. Sahra Wagenknecht (Oskar Lafontaine, the lucky stiff) says “Fuck U.S. Imperialism!!” Is that the tide I hear, turning?

    Seriously, this gives the people a clear choice – same old same-old, with national leaders pretending to govern while taking their orders from Washington on the down-low in support of strictly American strategic objectives, or a true break with America as an economic partner only. The USA has pooh-poohed the notion of Europe actually rejecting it as ridiculous, but it wants to tread very lightly, because a lot of people are getting very fed up with a “Great Game” which is focused entirely on American benefit and in which the European members are expendable. Putin can make hay with this if he does not get too cocky.

    • ThatJ says:

      The problem with Germany’s Left Party is that it is anti-German.

      It’s not a patriotic party like, say, Marine Le Pen’s National Front or Orban’s Fidesz.

      Denouncing outward aggression against the OTHER whilst indulging in inward aggression against the SELF makes the party unattractive to a great many number of Germans, despite all its righteous anti-imperialist rhetoric. Think of a man who’s an activist that campaigns to end the violence against women, whilst at home he’s a wife-beater.

      The Left Party is also in the opposition, so it likes to make a lot of noise. Even Sarkozy denounced the anti-Russian French government now that he’s in the opposition. Would Sarkozy, under American pressure, toe the line on Russia? We don’t know, but there’s ground to believe that he would. The same suspicion applies to Die Linke, especially considering the party’s hardcore activists and their homophilia, Germanophobia and other traits that are not shared by the Russian government. See:

      “One German who will not be wearing any flags today is Stefan Kunath, 25. Kunath is an activist in Germany’s left of center Die Linke party. In an online correspondence he writes, “Many Germans use the World Cup as [an] outlet to show their suppressed nationalistic feelings. This why soccer is not solely about soccer, but the regaining of German pride after Auschwitz…”

      You can read the rest of the story here.

      Watch what Putin says in this video regarding what he thinks of Kunath and his ilk, duration is 45 seconds, starting at 1:26:00:

      You can enable the English subtitles by clicking on “Subtitles/CC”. The conference in question was the Seliger 2014 National Youth Forum.

      • Moscow Exile says:

        Die Linke (The Left) is the direct descendent of the Sozialistishe Einheitspartei Deuetshlands – the main party of the former German Democratic Republic. Much of the support for Die Linke is in the former “East Germany”, though very many Germans have not too fond memories of the SED and its politburo members.

        Shown below is the the 1968 SED Central Committee of the SED Politburo and candidate members:

        That’s Walter Ulbricht the middle, with the goatee, General Secretary of the party, and to his left is the last SED gensec, Erich Honecker, who got ousted just before the Wall fell in September ’89, and who passed on his office to the last and very short reigning SED Gensec, Egon Krenz.

        What a miserable, sour and po-faced awful bunch those East German politicians were!

        I lived in East Germany in 1989 and left there for the Soviet Union in September of that year. I can honestly say that the GDR is the only place that I have lived and have been so glad to leave.

        There were occassionally some light momernts though:

        Comrades Brezhnev and Ulbricht displaying their unbridled love for one another.

        I think they must have been at the vodka.

        That was well before my sojourn there, of course, in the workers’ paradise of the German Soviet Occupation Zone.

        • Tim Owen says:

          I was thinking of a putting a large sign up on our house which happens to have a billboard sized wall facing the street. A billboard to express my utter disgust with all the governments that supposedly represent me. I think I just found the image I need. And thanks to Sara’s husband I think I have my slogan.

          Now I just need to convince my lady wife.

          • Tim Owen says:

            Double damn. Just realized that’s Honecker tounging the mighty B above. That won’t do.

            I need a good, ironic image to pull this off. One that suggests detente in a humorous, subversive way.

            And a slogan that’s just a little bit cryptic. I was thinking: “END THE WAR PARTY.” Or “END THE WAR, START THE PARTY”

            Or maybe some riff on the fact that all the accumulating wisdom post 45 led to detente has somehow evaporated and now we’re, you know, HERE.

            Maybe it doesn’t matter that it’s Honecker?

            Any ideas welcome.

        • Moscow Exile says:

          Bloody typos!!!!

          Sozialistishe Einheitspartei Deutschlands!!!!!!

          The Geman Socialist Unity Party.

      • marknesop says:

        Sarkozy would say anything to get elected again, though, so that he could get back on the gravy train – not to mention that Sarkozy sold the MISTRALs to Russia, and Hollande’s caving in to the Americans was broadly unpopular. Still, it’s worth pointing out that Die Linke might be unelectable and so are in a position to say anything they like. However, as I mentioned just a moment ago, many opposition parties globally seem to be lining up against Washington rather than pandering to internal concerns, and it appears to me to symptomize growing discontent with American bullying.

      • yalensis says:

        Dear ThatJ:
        Your comment is dishonest and completely misleading.
        Putin does not mention Kunath or make any comments about German internal politics.
        He merely makes a more general point, that the contemporary German people are not responsible for what the Nazis did, 2 or 3 generations ago. Which is a quite generic and sensible point, that very few people could disagree with.

        As you often do, you attempt to imprint your own ideological preconceptions onto others.
        The fact is, you have no idea what Putin actually thinks about Kunath, or Wagenknecht, or any of the others. Maybe he likes them, maybe he doesn’t.

        But you don’t know.

        • marknesop says:

          “He merely makes a more general point, that the contemporary German people are not responsible for what the Nazis did, 2 or 3 generations ago. Which is a quite generic and sensible point, that very few people could disagree with.”

          And particularly relevant for him, as the corollary is the Russian people of today are not responsible for what Stalin did 2 or 3 generations ago, and he is not the reincarnation of Stalin.

        • ThatJ says:

          @yalensis

          Stefan Kunath stated that waving the flag in a pathetic show of civic nationalism is dangerous because in the past German nationalism led to the Shoah.

          Putin said that the mentality of people like Kunath is wrong and harmful. He didn’t need to name names. He’s aware that there are forces at work pushing German guilt.

          I wasn’t dishonest, and Stefan Kunath is indeed harmful for his country.

          • yalensis says:

            Once again, show me exactly WHERE Putin mentioned Stefan Kunath by name.
            Oh right, “He didn’t need to mention names.”
            Right, because you have ESP and you can read Putin’s mind.

            We get it, YOU believe Kunath is harmful for his country.
            But where does PUTIN say that Kunath is harmful for his country?
            I claim that you are putting words in Putin’s mouth, to make it seem like Putin agrees with you, about your opinion of Kunath.
            And furthermore, I don’t believe that you have ESP.

  13. Moscow Exile says:

    Hi everybody! Here I am in Donbas taking part in ATO.

    What fun this is!

    And here I am in hospital after having had both my legs blown off by a landmine.

    Irina Ivanyush, a 25-year old “punisher” from Drogovych, had both her legs blown off and suffered a wound to one eye after having stepped on a land mine near Avdeeka.

    Earlier, when supporting those who where shooting at women and children, she did a photo-shoot, grinning broadly. Now she is weeping bitter tears.

    The Yukie press is lavishing great praise on the unfortunate woman’s “heroism”.

    From the very first she volunteered as a medic.

    She says she’s going to continue to help the Ukraine “soldiers”.

    Quite how, I just cannot imagine.

    See: Девушка-волонтер потеряла обе ноги, но хочет и дальше помогать солдатам

    Героине слава?

    I wonder if she ever thought about the fate of that poor woman in the red dress who died shortly after after having had her legs almost blown off at Lugansk by cluster bombs loosed on the population there by a heroic pilot of the Yukie air force, albeit that Harding of the Grauniad suggested at the time that the frightful injuries and death toll of civilians that day might have been caused by “terrorists” trying to fire a SAM out of the Lugansk central administrative building.

    • kirill says:

      Any halfwit can engage in this schoolyard they did this and that first BS. I want to see proof the “terrorists” were shooting anything in the area including the air conditioners as was claimed by retards at the time. No proof, no case. In contrast, the presence of the Ukr Su-25 and its strafing run was caught on video. This is real proof and not “proof by assertion”.

    • cartman says:

      The landmines which were illegally placed by the junta, in violation of the Ottawa Treaty which was signed and ratified by the Ukraine. To date, no Western country has fulfilled its responsibility to place sanctions against the Ukraine.

      • marknesop says:

        Correct, and well said – the landmines the junta proudly advertised it was laying, without a murmur of censure.

        This report by Human Rights watch introduces documented evidence that Ukrainian forces lay mines, although it also reports “In April and again in June 2014, the government of Ukraine stated that it has not used
        landmines in the conflict and accused Russian forces of laying landmines in Ukraine”, and “In December 2014, Ukrainian government officials informed Human Rights Watch representatives that “no banned weapons” have been used in the “Anti-Terrorist Operations Zone” by Ukrainian armed forces or forces associated with them, such as volunteer battalions.” Despite lies right in their faces, HRW’s position is that it is not possible to determine who was responsible.

        This report repeats much of the same information, but closes with discussion that Ukraine has been in violation of the Mine Ban Treaty since 2010, and that its excuse for non-compliance was that it is waiting for a handout from the EU to pay for the destruction of its mine stockpiles.

        • Moscow Exile says:

          To be sure, I feel very, very sorry for that young woman who has lost her legs and I shouldn’t wish such a fate on my worst enemy – and she is my enemy, in that she would not have batted an eyelid if my Moskali wife and children had been the recipients of an artillery barrage, unleashed upon them by the “heroes” whose medical needs she immediately volunteered to tend for when they marched joyfully off to the east in order to coerce the “terrorists” there who refused to recognize the Kiev/Galicia regime.

          I still think, though, that it is highly likely that the landmine that has mutilated her so terribly and destroyeed the quality of the remaining years of her life was planted by her fellow “heroes”.

          Witness these landmines lifted by the separatists from a minefield this month and which were sown by the Banderites:

          Kids will be having their legs blown off for many years to come in those parts.

          • Northern Star says:

            http://freebeacon.com/national-security/obama-bans-landmine-use-against-military-leaders-advice/
            So will lamndmines be part of the equipment the USA provides to Kiev…for purely defensive purposes??

          • kat kan says:

            They are “doing the right thing” and putting up warning notices about them.

            NAF now have 600 trained sappers, working as civilians attached to their Emergencies Ministry, working full time on mine removal in liberated areas. One third of Donbass agricultural land was mined, and had to be cleared before they could start sowing their main crops last autumn. A few farmers have only found out about them by having one explode under their tractor, but luckily none have been killed by this so far.

            In border settlements now, people watch out for what’s happening, so can report mine laying as soon as they’re liberated. Buildings and infrastructure such as substations and wells also get mined.

            • cartman says:

              There was a bus full of passengers killed a few months ago near a checkpoint. The media immediately blame “separatist rockets” although the shrapnel looked like it was from a landmine.

        • kat kan says:

          Seeing the landmines always seem to be in areas that UAF or Pravy Sector has had control of, and NAF or Russians never, the mines must have been laid by parties on the Kiev side. Or some Martians slipped in under cover of darkness. Has HRW seen signs of Martians around?

          • marknesop says:

            Well, the OSCE has seen the rebels with mines, but they always (at least from the examples provided) seem to have them in a truck or display them on concrete, as if they are the results of mine-clearing. I would not suggest the DNR personnel are so lily-white that they would never re-use them or that it is impossible they would lay mines themselves, but the DNR is heavily invested in ensuring civilians cannot be injured by minelaying that they have carried out, since those civilians are their own people.

      • Tim Owen says:

        My sister in-law worked very hard on that treaty. I told her wife – my sister – who is a civilian working in the Canadian military – equivalent military rank of captain – how it’s been ignored and she was outraged.

        • cartman says:

          The NPT is invoked as the reason for sanctions and other options (on the table) because of Iran’s alleged violations of it. The US nor Russia have ratified the Ottawa Treaty, and are unlikely to do so. Russia doubly unlikely since the treaty would be invoked for “sanctions” just like the Minsk agreement is (even though the US was never invited).

          It shows that Europe and Canada are not leadership material. They have effectively killed this treaty and the chances to get other nations to sign. They have also killed their involvement in any arms control treaties in the future (if there are ever any more). Even Britain’s Princess Di worship has failed to rouse the population since this treaty was her pet cause.

        • marknesop says:

          It’d be nice if that came to something. Kind of like having an inside track.

    • et Al says:

      I’ve no sympathies for nazidolls, so:

  14. Moscow Exile says:

    Russian independent pollster, the Levada Center, says the share of Russians who are happy with Vladimir Putin’s work as president has reached 89 percent, which is his highest-ever approval rating.

    Just shows you how stupid Russians are, doesn’t it…

    Doesn’t it?

  15. Moscow Exile says:

    Two faced, double-talking Arschlöcher!!!!

    Just watch their body language and that of the military man next to them!

    Seibert is Merkel’s spokesman; Schaefer speaks for the German Foreign Ministry.

    • kirill says:

      These retards think their safety level is increased by nuke deployment on their soil. They will be carbonized nicely thanks to their arrogant ignorance.

    • et Al says:

      Yup. The German security guys know what’s what and are seriously unhappy. Still got to sell it to the extremely skeptical German public.

  16. ThatJ says:

    BLACKOUT BRITAIN

    All electrical power was cut in south Edinburgh for the fourth time in four years. The slide of Scotland’s capital towards third-world status coincided with reports that the products of modern Britain’s ‘schools’ and fatherless ‘families’ did not know how to put up a shelf, change a light bulb or mow the grass, not to mention having fallen out of the world’s top 25 countries in level of educational attainment.

    Edinburgh’s power cuts varied between one and four hours in length and were provided by faceless ‘suppliers’ who could never be contacted and by the SNP-led city council best known for its useless trams.

    At least there wasn’t a war on; though the West’s decline into IQ-disrespecting idealism and fatuous bureaucracy would pretty soon change that as thousands of A/A’s were ferried in daily to enjoy what was left of civilization before they closed it down completely

    WHITE MAN’S BURDEN

    As a thousand A/As floated into Europe daily (or were brought in without charge by HMS Bulwark) and another half-million waited in the ungoverned demakrazic Libya (of Western fabrication) for their chance to cross the Med to EU paradise, Australia’s top Queensman and Prime Minister, Tony Abbott declined to deny that he would bribe people-smugglers to steer away from Oz and had already been paying £30K for each boat intercepted and steered back to Indonesia (Guardian, 12 vi).

    (The Workers’ own Paradise had long paid for the prison islands of Manus and Nauru as places where it could dump unwanted aspiring migrants; but apparently the islands were full up or getting too much press attention.)

    Interesting questions arose for case-seeking lawyers as to whether Australia bribes would put the country in violation of its international agreements to accept refugees; and for economists as to whether the bribes would only increase refugee traffic. But Abbott said he would “do what it takes” to stop the boats so long as it was “decent”; and he could take credit for recognizing that Whites were going to have to re-imperialize the world and pay local governments to police it (if perhaps getting in return the cheap military labour that Russia enjoyed from the –stans). And an Indonesian boat captain insisted he had only been given his £30k on condition he engage in no more people smuggling.

    MULTICULTI MAYHEM

    The anxieties felt by peecee-indoctrinated and –terrorized Whites about crossing the colour bar and making the slightest criticism of any Black turned out to be in short supply among Pakistani youth in multiculti Bradford. There, when a Black supply teacher (liked by his neighbours in nearby Leeds) asked a 14-yr Asian pupil to hand in at the start of a lesson the mobile phone with which the boy was constantly playing, a knife was drawn, the teacher stabbed and hospitalized, and the boy charged by police with attempted murder (D.Telegraph, 12 vi).

    ADIOS, AMERICA!

    Divine* US journaliste Ann Coulter provided an vigorous account at a signing in Washington of her most recent book which accused American authorities of hiding the vast extent of the problems arising from third-world immigration (AmRen, 18 vi).

    A bon mot from Ann: “Unless you’re being called a racist by the New York Times, you’re losing.”

    Another: “Roe v. Wade can be overturned. Obamacare can be repealed. Amnesty [for illegal immigrants] is forever.”

    *An AmRen correspondent (18 vi): There is no one remotely like Ann, part Mort Sahl, part Joan of Arc, the mind of a Harvard Law Professor trapped in the body of a Victoria’s Secret model. The proper response is adoration.

    The one discrepancy that intrigues me is that she is an ardent Christian (practically demanding martyrdom) and creationist (how ironic that the apogee of evolution denies evolution). Race realism is based on evolutionary biology. That suggests a fault line, but her outreach to the dissident right has been impressively enthusiastic.

    As for money-making, she would make much, much more if she tapered her views ever so slightly. With her looks and her wit, she is prime time material. She could drive a hard Faustian bargain but she’d rather have lunch with Vdare bloggers or even our Jared.

    INTELLIGENCE AGAINST INVASION

    Taking a couple of hours off from a jaunt to Milan’s ‘Expo’ exhibition, UK PM Daft Dave lunched with his Italian counterpart Matteo Renzi and promised help from British intelligence services (MI5, 6, 7, 8 etc.) to examine, document and discuss the hordes of A/A’s with which Italy was being inundated. Over a meal of risotto alla Milanese and roast veal, washed down with Soave and Bardolino wines, Cameron appeared to have been given a fairly sympathetic hearing for his case that the EU needed changes.

    Both leaders agreed the migrant problem originated outwith Italy {perhaps in Britain with its post-Thatcher idealism and demand for slave labour?…}; and that it would take months if not years of lunches ooops committee work to solve.

    http://gfactor.blogspot.com

    • marknesop says:

      Ann Coulter is America’s Yulia Latynina; crazier than Stormfront and twice as white. She accused a group of 9-11 widows of revelling in the celebrity granted them by their husbands’ deaths, “enjoying it”, because they criticized Bush’s policies. And she looks like a transvestite. Not that there’s anything wrong with that.

      There is nothing inherently wrong with immigrants unless you are prepared to make the case that they are too stupid – compared with whites – to learn anything useful. The problem lies in countries taking in people for whom they have no jobs. Canada would collapse without immigration because our birth rate will not keep up with the pace of growth we want and need to stay competitive. Every country should be able to set their own immigration targets and they should be driven by available opportunity – who is the authority which sets global immigration quotas, anyway?

    • ThatJ says:

      @marknesop

      I agree that Ann Coulter is not beautiful. Part of the problem with her looks is that she’s too thin, and is not young anymore. If she was at least a decade younger and weighted a few extra kilos, she would be more appealing.

      Thinness + age + hormonal changes + lack of neoteny = androgyny.

      Regarding immigration, if I was the president of a country facing demographic decline, I would argue that it’s a national security issue needing immediate action. My view is that feminism is not to blame (plenty of countries with no history of feminism have a below-replacement birth rate), but feminism makes the problem harder to tackle because of the ideology’s hold on the intelligentsia — the sector of the population that is more prone to protest. What is to blame is the inverted priorities of today, where women and men are taught that they first have to grow financially and ‘intelectually’ and only then, maybe after they are successful enough in their 30s or early 40s, they can “think about having children”.

      What is the % of young adults who go to the university after finishing highschool? In developed countries (and even developing ones such as Russia) I think that at least a third of young adults do.

      A simple fix to this problem by the state would be to demand that, for equality’s sake, both men and women must have at least a child in order to pursue higher education. I also believe that whatever the incentives by the state are, the reward must be immediate. Long-term rewards are unconvincing in that they can be scrapped by future governments and thus are not guaranteed. Some ideas:

      One child. You can pursue higher education. In other words, you need to be a parent to become a professional with a diploma.

      Two children. Education costs are cut by half, paid by the state.
      If you don’t plan to pursue higher education, you can convert this benefit to $10k in cash.

      Three children. Education costs are fully covered by the state, plus a $10k bonus.
      If you don’t plan to pursue higher education, you can convert this benefit to $20k in cash.

      Four children. $10k in cash plus a car.

      Five children. $10k in cash plus a plot of land.

      Entering university with a child would make the place less liberast, too, as people with children are proven to be more conservative. Another effect is that the prevalent mindset that “I’m too young to have children” will lose power as the sight of young families psychologically impact people who would otherwise feel like outcasts, even if they are unaware of this impact on a conscious level. Furthermore, there is an underlying belief/stigma that only the riff-raff can become young parents.

      The only people exempt from needing to have a child to pursue higher education are the infertile who naturally cannot have children and also the high-functioning autists who have problem socializing with people (= they are unlikely to ever marry).

      In the case of Canada, the country can and should select immigrants from European countries if the government considers immigration a must. As William Mackenzie King, Canada’s longest-serving PM, announced in 1947:

      Canada is perfectly within her rights in selecting the persons whom we regard as desirable future citizens […] There will, I am sure, be general agreement with the view that the people of Canada do not wish, as a result of mass immigration, to make a fundamental alteration in the character of our population. Large-scale immigration from the Orient would change the fundamental composition of the Canadian population.

      That’s a sentiment I can endorse. Multiculturalism was introduced in 1971 in Canada. But was Canada a monocultural place before that? No, it was not. There was no single religion, no single ethnicity and not even a single language. But it was mostly monoracial. As always, the focus of the multiculturalist ideology is not that be “multiple cultures”, but that whites are targeted for demographic destruction.

      • Jen says:

        The idea of requiring people to have children before pursuing higher education can be problematic. If someone is infertile, how can that be proved or disproved? – fertility and infertility are not always fixed or permanent states. The medical profession would have its work cut out testing people for fertility issues before they can pursue further education. Pharmaceutical firms would be slavering at the thought of selling fertility / infertility testing kits to medical clinics throughout the world.

        The situation would resemble what used to exist in Romania under Nicolae Ceausescu in the 1980s when abortion was outlawed and single and childless women had to visit medical clinics every month (they might be frogmarched by their boss at work to the clinic) to answer questions about why they were still childless and submit to medical examinations in the presence of govt officials. Women who had miscarriages could be suspected of evading the anti-abortion law and liable to be arrested and charged.

        Also universities and technical colleges would have to spend money on providing childcare and even preschools and kindergartens for children of students, or make sure there are such facilities close to their campuses.

        • yalensis says:

          All good points, Jen.

          The other side of the fertility coin, is that truly infertile people might demand the right to have children, and would expect the government to pay for their in vitro procedures and possible surrogacy (in case a womb is also needed). A very expensive proposition. (Currently people have to pay for this themselves, and I don’t believe is even covered by standard medical insurance.)

          Presumably ThatJ has all these fine points covered in his political program. Also, I am guessing that in his ideal future, the government gets to decide not only who MUST have children, but also who must not. And I am also guessing that he excludes certain racial types from being able to have children. (via forced sterilization, forced abortion, the usual fascist methods…)

          Dubious that any real people would actually vote such a political party into power. In Canada or anywhere else where people have elections.

          • marknesop says:

            The original idea was valid, and well-intentioned. But it’s an excellent example of why a project which has to be approved by a committee seldom sees the light of day unmodified. Sonmetimes that’s because the committe is a bunch of power-mad jackasses who can’t let anything pass without editing it. I wouldn’t like to think that describes us, but you can see also that no matter how good you think your idea is, a group of people from different backgrounds can see holes in it that you never would when you were developing it.

        • spartacus says:

          “The situation would resemble what used to exist in Romania under Nicolae Ceausescu in the 1980s when abortion was outlawed and single and childless women had to visit medical clinics every month (they might be frogmarched by their boss at work to the clinic) to answer questions about why they were still childless and submit to medical examinations in the presence of govt officials. Women who had miscarriages could be suspected of evading the anti-abortion law and liable to be arrested and charged.”

          From the top of my head, I have never heard of any woman being forced to undergo medical examination in presence of govt. officials in order to establish if she was fertile or not. I’ll ask my friends and relatives for some more information on the subject, but, at least to me, this particular point seems far-fetched. It is true that abortion was outlawed and was permitted in case the life of the pregnant woman was endangered by the pregnancy, if one of the parents had an hereditary transmittable disorder, if the child was a result of rape/incest, if the woman was over 45 years old or if she all ready had 4 children. It is also true that, during the annual medical check-up that was carried out in all the workplaces (on both men an women), the doctors performing the check-up (that in the case of women also included a gynecological examination) were supposed to make notes of any signs that would indicate that the woman in question may have had a previous abortion. But I never heard of anyone being forced to undergo fertility evaluation in presence of govt. officials. Because of lack of adequate contraceptive measures and a proper sex education there were women that ended up being forced to seek the assistance of doctors that performed illegal abortions under awful conditions. In my view, the law to ban abortions was a very serious mistake, one that led, in the time interval between 1966 and 1989, to about 9500 tragic deaths of women. It was a really tragic episode in the history of our country…

          • Jen says:

            Sources consulted for the information on the so-called “menstrual police”
            http://www.ceausescu.org/ceausescu_texts/overplanned_parenthood.htm

            I think in the early 1990s, when the former gymnast Nadia Comaneci had just arrived in the US after defecting from Romania through Hungary or Austria and staying a while in Montreal, a journalist asked her about whether unmarried and childless Romanian women had had to undergo monthly gynaecological check-ups and questioning about why they were still childless during Ceaucescu’s rule and Comaneci said that they had indeed been compelled to: she had been one of these women herself.

            In those days, a lot of strange rumours swirled around Comaneci because so little was known about her even though she was such a popular sports star and the Romanian government would not allow her to travel abroad for a long time after her coach Bela Karolyi defected to the US in 1981. Probably the strangest of the lot was that she had been Nicu Ceausescu’s mistress.

            Probably different parts of Romania applied Decree 770 more zealously than other areas.

            • spartacus says:

              I am amused to find out that there is such a thing as a website called “ceausescu.org”…

              “Condoms and other methods of contraception were smuggled into the country and sold for more than most Romanians could afford. ”

              This is also funny, because I know that my parents had such “devices” at their disposal. I found them accidentally while looking for hidden Christmas presents. Then, when I spoke to some of my friends about that, it turns out that some of them were making similar “discoveries”, while others were asking with a strait face “what’s a condom and what do you need it for?” Please note that this story takes place when me and my friends were about 13 – 14 years old. Within the same age group one could find huge differences in what one would call today “Sex Education” and it was in strict relation with the approach towards talking about sex taken within one’s family. In my case I was somewhat lucky because my mother was open about this subject and, whenever I had questions, she would answer them without making a big deal out of it. On the other hand, my father was pretty uptight about the subject, so I simply stopped talking to him about it.

              “Additionally, sex education was forbidden and books about reproduction and contraception were deemed “state secrets” only to be used for medical training”

              This is news to me. Back in ’85, when I was in the 7th grade, the curriculum included an anatomy course where students would learn about male and female reproductive systems. In those days, there were lots of things that were not right, but I am sometimes surprised by the exaggerations some authors make in order to sell books, or whatever…

              • marknesop says:

                If i ever get five minutes to work on the blog, and as well as adding the narrative for the book “Out of the Cold” that is already listed in the library, I want to add “Ordinary Russians” by Barry Broadfoot. The Great Sage who is allegedly famous for having interviewed thousands of Canadians lives just down the road from here, in Nanaimo, James’ home town, or he did when the book was published in 1989. Interviews and conversations are his thing, and the book reflects such conversations which took place during a trip he made to the Soviet Union in about 1986. At that time he was besieged with requests for novels in English by the great American author Robert Ludlum. A smart young secretary whom he met told him she would pay him much more for the book than he paid for it, and then she and an associate would make many copies on this amazing new machine they had on loan from the Japanese. It copied whole pages, woot, woot, woot, just like that, like magic. A photocopier, he told her. Yes, that’s what it was; amazing new technology – in 1986 – for the ignorant Soviets. They would have to give it back in 3 months, though, they just had it on trial and they were going to say it was no good so they wouldn’t have to pay anything because Russians are cheap, then they would approach some other company, maybe in Germany, and get something else for free. Mr. Broadfoot went armed with plenty of packages of .99-cent pantyhose, because he knew he would be able to extricate any information with such favours at his disposal. The whole book is like that, and even though he cannot speak a word of Russian, he was happy to put a spin on what people were saying in conversations to which he was an observer – they were striking deals, up to no good, you could just tell. I thought I would put it in so people could laugh at it, as I did, although it made me angry at the same time. He is very much a product of the Cold War in his thinking, and in his estimation Russians are ignorant, boorish rotters who deserve whatever happens to them, while Estonians are wonderful cultured people with progressive ideas and Ukrainians are a little corrupt but otherwise honest, cheerful and hardworking. I hardly need to say he doesn’t speak either of those languages. Some of his assessments came entirely from his imagination, while others are from actual conversations with people who were speaking in a second language or through an interpreter.

              • yalensis says:

                Thanks, Spartacus, your comments are very interesting.

                I can’t help but wonder if some of the anti-Ceausescu material from the West was just the kind of wild exagerration that is currently used against Putin.
                To demonize him beyond belief.
                He was, after all, overthrown in Western-supported color revolution!

                • marknesop says:

                  It actually did sound quite a bit like that, didn’t it – the repressive, cruel dictator eating canary heads and caviar whilst his poor people struggled on a diet of turnip greens. It would likely be a mistake to paint him as an enlightened leader, because I can believe he was a bit of a despot. But these guys almost never turn out as bad in the eyes of their people as they are painted by the hyperbolic western media.

                  I have seen the sum total of one Romanian woman, barring the fair Comaneci; an acquaintance of mine is married to a Romanian. She’s lovely, which admittedly tiny sample suggests Romanians are an attractive people as well as Slavic women.

              • Jen says:

                @ Spartacus: Very interesting to hear about the discrepancies in your experience and what passes through Western media filters about life in Ceausescu-era Romania. Not meaning to knock what your family experienced but it could be possible that Decree 770 was interpreted and carried out in different ways in different parts of the country, with some medical clinics following the law closely and others less so. Some doctors may have resisted the law in secret ways and given family planning advice or performed abortions at home.

                Here’s a more detailed article about Ceausescu’s anti-abortion law and some of the effects it had on Romanian women:

                Click to access adriana_iordache_2_.pdf

                • spartacus says:

                  “…with some medical clinics following the law closely and others less so. Some doctors may have resisted the law in secret ways and given family planning advice or performed abortions at home.”

                  You are dead right on this one. Yesterday I paid my mother a long overdue visit and, at some point in our conversation, I brought up the Decree 770. I made her a short resume of what informations one could find on the internet about this subject and asked her what was her opinion on this. She told me that she, or the women in her close proximity (friends, relatives, whatever), were never subjected to one of those workplace medical exams, other then the usual, yearly, check-ups. However, things were different in the large factories that employed large numbers of women (textile factories, for example). There, the women were indeed subjected to periodic medical check-ups and that those check-ups included gynecological exams that were used as a pretext to inspect if the woman in question had an illegal abortion procedure performed on her. But she told me that she never heard of any “fertility evaluations” with or without govt. officials present. She said that, in the absence of children, the only thing required of you was the so called “childless fee” (as a percentage of your monthly wage). Furthermore, while the law was in effect, people were constantly looking for loopholes to exploit (we Romanians are really, really good at that). For example if you were diagnosed with hepatitis or any disease that, coupled with your pregnancy, could adversely affect your or your baby’s health, the doctor was permitted to prescribe birth control pills. Additionally, an informal social network was formed that allowed women to seek the assistance of doctors willing to perform abortions. They would perform them in your own home, bringing whatever medical instruments were needed (they would borrow them from their workplaces and sometimes they would even enlist the help of a nurse). One of my mother’s co-workers had no less than 14 abortion procedures performed on her, while my mother had two. Also there was a thriving black market that allowed women to acquire birth control pills at affordable prices, thus bypassing the need to see the doctor for a prescription. When I say affordable I really mean that, because my mother was not some well paid apparatchik, she was a technician working on various construction sites and my father was a mechanical engineer working in machinery construction. These informal social networks were one of the biggest open secrets in our country. There was one for everything. Movie tickets, food, jeans, French perfume, cigarettes, booze, you name it. After 1989, some of those “informal merchants” became really successful businessmen. They had a head start because they had all ready gone through what Marx called “primitive accumulation”. And of course the secret police knew about them, but as long they didn’t threatened the status quo and were willing to supply information from time to time, they looked the other way. The real tragedy in this is that a sizeable number of women turned to unprofessional “problem solvers” that often botched the procedures and the women ended up infertile or, in extreme cases, dead. I think the Decree 770 is the perfect example of the level of disconnect that plagued the party leadership. They were practically living in another world all together.
                  What I find disturbing about my fellow countrymen, even today, is the lack of a proper sex education. For example my wife’s cousin has never gone to a gynecologist for a check-up. She is 35 years old. Another example: about two weeks ago, I spoke with a acquaintance of mine, a lawyer, who told me that he and his wife (also a lawyer) will have a baby and that they would have to make some changes in their professional lives because the pregnancy was unexpected. Since I was amused about the “unexpected” part, I asked how can it be unexpected. With all the contraceptive means readily available at every street corner, how can that happen. He told me that they didn’t think “it would stick”. Go figure.

                  About the poverty issue, I think what most westerners do not understand is that it was not poverty per se. People had money but, after about 1975, they did not have much to spend it on. Everything the country produced was destined for export. Imports were slashed drastically in order to have a positive balance of trade. The thirst for dollars that were needed to pay the external debt was all consuming.

                  At the end of the conversation, as a side note, my mother told me: “Let me tell you one more thing about those times. When you were a little baby and I went shopping with you still in your stroller, I used to leave you outside while I was in the store. It was that safe.” If the babies were sleeping or they were playing in their strollers and if the weather permitted, mothers would routinely leave them outside while they were shopping. That made me laugh, because in today’s Romania I don’t even think about leaving my small daughter out of my sight for even a minute. But that may be just because I tend to be the paranoid type of parent…

      • marknesop says:

        Anne Coulter was never attractive, in my opinion, because she is so mean-spirited, brassy and opinionated. Those qualities make her like a man, and there is nothing much very feminine about her. She has nice legs in a short skirt, although she’s getting a little past the age for short skirts (I’m told there is one, even if you still have great legs, much to my chagrin).

        Your plans make sense on paper, are even fairly innovative, but you have to figure on the welfare angle, and couples who are too lazy to do anything except chuck out sprogs one after another in order to qualify for more bonuses and support. Somewhere in the calculations needs to be “must take education for a trade with a view to employment” followed by “must have a job”. There are already a few people I can think of who are into full-time babymaking – I think of them every day when I am cycling to work, and wonder what time they will be getting up.

        • kafkananda says:

          One of the greatest mindf***s I’ve experienced in 65 years was learning that Ann Coulter is a Dead Head! Although I think she fails the ‘Are you kind?’ question. A big tent and mysteries of the mind, a combination still going strong after 50 years. The ‘Last Time’ is only another step into the journey forward. Wow, 50 years of the Grateful Dead, beginning this American Independence Day. Living true to yourself and others is a valid path in life. Let’s make the boys proud!

          • marknesop says:

            Welcome, kafkanada! I have never read that about her, although I could honestly say nearly all I know about her is what comes out of her mouth. I used to follow American politics closely, and I recall that she loathes liberals as if they are some kind of disease, and “liberals” include all Democrats plus anyone else who will not wave the flag at every opportunity and stand up and sing for corporate profits. Hell, yeah, corporations are people – Anne exulted over the legal decision which granted corporations the right to give unlimited campaign cash to political parties, and when the guy or gal who has the most money doesn’t win, I have to say it is a surprise because that’s pretty well how it always turns out. I love the Dead, too – it’s just not possible to keep that free-love generation hippie bubble going forever, but they are a poignant reminder of the days when it ruled, and I remember them as good days.

        • Jen says:

          Another issue of course is whether society should force people to have children. One could argue that forcing people to have children in order to receive education so that the parents can be better qualified at making a better grade of widgets in the widget factory than they would be otherwise, and so that society is assured of a future generation of widget makers (whether or not they are actually needed because in the future someone could invent robots that make widgets or widgets become self-replicating), is really not ethical.

          • marknesop says:

            That’s a valid point. I liked the initiative the Martin government implemented in the last great blaze of Liberal glory before they supernovaed out and became irrelevant, and Stephen Harper’s road crew took over to remake the country to his vision. As soon as a child’s birth was registered, the government started putting money away for his/her education; I think they put up $1000.00, and then managed it as savings, building the interest in safe investments. When that child finished high school, if he/she wanted to go on to secondary education and had the grades to be accepted, the money was his/hers for school. If he/she dropped out, died or otherwise never got to the threshold, the money went back into the kitty for someone else. I thought it was one of the best education plans ever. But the Conservatives killed it stone dead in their relentless quest for savings.

          • yalensis says:

            I think it goes without saying that it’s unethical to allow the government to use educational opportunity as a hammer to force people to have children, whether they want to or not.

            INCENTIVES to have kids, on the other hand – I see nothing wrong with that.
            But since ThatJ is a believer in race-based eugenics, I have a feeling that he would not care to apply such incentives across the board, to all the citizens of the polity, but only to selected ones, based on racial characteristics.

            But ThatJ is being a bit coy about that, since he is still (as of today) in the “latent” part of his propaganda cycle. Probably by tomorrow, we will start getting the full blast of the nastier stuff that comes out of him.

            • Moscow Exile says:

              Dmitry Medvedev signed a decree “On Establishing the Order of Parental Glory”

              Never gave me a badge, the tight-arses!

              They gave Mrs. Exile this after the birth of our last sprog – “they” being Moscow city authoriities:

              The obverse side of the medal reads: Born in Moscow.

              The reverse shows the Moscow St.George symbol.

              I, however, got sweet FA – and after all the hard work I did!

              Be that as it may, I agree entirely with the following chap’s sentiments as regards the possession of badges:

              From BuzzFeed, with usually snidey comments:

              Did you know that Vladimir Putin hands out medals every year to giant families in Russia? Because he does.

              The snidey comment at the end of the above-linked article reads thus:

              o Putin is still handing out the awards. And judging by his declaration that Russia will “continue pursuing our active demographic policy,” he probably will for as long as he’s president — so forever.

              No, old frantic Russophobic chum, “forever” is a long time: only as long as Putin remains the democratically elected president according to the constitutional terms of presidential office.

              A Russian presidential term of office, according to the Russian constitution, can be no longer than 6 years and cannot run more than two terms consecutively. After a second term of consecutive office, a Russian president must stand down and another must be duly elected, though anyone who is a Russian citizen and over 30 years of age may run for presidential office, even if he/she has previously held such office, after the presidential term of office of another incumbent president has expired.

              Got that?

              No, it’s not like the US terms of presidential office, but so fucking what?

              • Moscow Exile says:

                And I tell you what: I’m proud to be part of a society that encourages the creation of such large families. And they’re multi-ethnic, as you can see by the photos, but they are still all rossiyane – “Citizens of the Russian Federation”.

                No, the “ethnics” are not sub-Saharan African, which I often feel is for many Westerners “ethnic”.

                I work with many Russian citizens who are not Slavs and I have never sensed any animosity directed at them by their Slav fellow citizens. Every day my janitor says good morning to me, and he is from some “stan” republic in Central Asia, as are all his other colleagues, male and female, in my district.

                I had to smile the other day when one dark-skinned lad sweeping the street said good morning to me in a friendly way: he was wearing a T-shirt on which was emblazoned in English: “I am a Muslim”.

                The thought crossed my mind whether I should be able to find on the Arbat a T-shirt on which there is a picture of Woden.

              • marknesop says:

                I personally think it’s very unfair – they’re portraying it as if the mother has to do most of the hard work!

      • Tim Owen says:

        I am SO glad you brought this up:

        “In the case of Canada, the country can and should select immigrants from European countries if the government considers immigration a must. As William Mackenzie King, Canada’s longest-serving PM, announced in 1947:

        Canada is perfectly within her rights in selecting the persons whom we regard as desirable future citizens […] There will, I am sure, be general agreement with the view that the people of Canada do not wish, as a result of mass immigration, to make a fundamental alteration in the character of our population. Large-scale immigration from the Orient would change the fundamental composition of the Canadian population.

        That’s a sentiment I can endorse. Multiculturalism was introduced in 1971 in Canada. But was Canada a monocultural place before that? No, it was not. There was no single religion, no single ethnicity and not even a single language. But it was mostly monoracial. As always, the focus of the multiculturalist ideology is not that be “multiple cultures”, but that whites are targeted for demographic destruction.”

        I fucking live here. The whole place is built on immigration. Including me.

        And you know, WE ALL GET ALONG JUST FINE.

        You know why? Because we have a good enough education infrastructure so that the majority of Canadians that notice can tell day-Glo bullshit from, you know, the regular onslaught. By day-Glo I mean your hateful ideology. Or for that matter the Chernobyl-like plume emanating from western Ukraine and its vassal-capital, Kiev.

        This country rejected at least one boatload of Eastern European refugees during the Nazi terrorism of the “Blood Lands” because they were deemed unsuitable for the economy. The cover was that they were deemed unsuitable for agricultural work, being – you know – Jews.

        Those escapees were returned to Germany and ended up in concentration camps as far as I recall.

        Can you imagine the distress implied by that narrative. Have you NO fucking PITY?

        The book’s called “None is too Many” and it was required reading in my public high school back in the 80’s.

        So a big up vote for public education as practiced in, you know, those countries with the best educated populace, like Scandinavia, and those at the back of the pack like Russia and Canada at ~ 5th or 6th. (As compared to the U.S. at, what, 18th.)

        • Tim Owen says:

          Just to put a finer point on it: my mother, who was in HR at Lucas-Rotax – a major arms-industry supplier – “back in the day” (50s / 60s) – told me they were directed to exclude black immigrants from the applicant files as it created problems on the “shop floor.”

          These were people in the Commowealth. As I recall from Hope and Glory, that means all the “pink bits.”

          This is not the right clip but it’s a brilliant film about a child’s experience of war-time:

          Regardless, race is not an issue in Canada. Nobody cares.

          Everyone knows that melding their own family package of stars / misfits / losers with another is going to be, you know, a challenge.

          Sounds like every wedding I’ve ever attended.

          Up with family. What’s close and knowable.

          “Death to” – how do you say this in Ukie – the party of war which wants to destroy everything that matters to all of us…

          I know!: the party of war / war party.

          • Moscow Exile says:

            I saw that “Hope and Glory” film when i was living in Germany and what amused me at the time was the summary in German that I read of it, written by the distributors in the Fatherland.

            The boy-hero, the central character of the film, was described as being “working class”, which amazed me, because the film shows British pre-war, middle-class, Home Counties suburbia and not the “slums of London” as the German distributers described the boy’s home environment.

            The boy’s “grandpa” even appears to be resident in some idylic riverside abode at Henley-on-Thames by the looks of it – a dead rough area and quite common: real whelks and jellied eels territory that really took a hammering from the Luftwaffe – I don’t think!

            • Oddlots says:

              Ha. That’s funny. I remember visiting a friend in Nuremburg back when I was living in Prague in 1990. Compared to Czech it was as spotless – and charmless – as an Ikea showroom but my host kept apologizing for the fact that he lived in the shabby “student” part of town, where the Turks lived. It mystified me at the time.

        • yalensis says:

          Dear Tim:

          You have my sympathy that ThatJ/MacDonald has turned his tender mercies to your country (=Canada). Prior to that, he was busy trying to incite race war in the U.S., which is where I am forced to live. And yes, typical America, god bless her, I have many neighbors from lots of different cultures, my closest neighbours are African-Americans (and yes, we like each other and get along just fine), but there are also Mexicans, Puerto Ricans, Greeks, other assorted European types, even Slavs (including me). And yes, we all get along just fine, we get up to go to work every morning and cheerfully say “Good morning” to each other, and go on hoping there will be never be no race war here, in OUR neighborhood.

        • ThatJ says:

          @yalensis

          The Mexicans, Puerto Ricans, Greeks, Slavs, African-Americans and other assorted Europeans will merge into a mongrel mess in the generations to come, certainly of lower intelligence than the founding stock of the country — unless there are racial barriers, as the founders and subsequent generations had, and which helped to steer the US from following the path of Latin America. There are other conditions that must be met, but brain power — a hereditary trait — is essential, and races differ greatly in this most important prerequisite.

          Mexico, Peru, Colombia, Venezuela, Haiti and most of Brazil are failures, whereas the United States, Canada, Australia and New Zealand are prosperous nations. Society is to a large degree a racial construct. The more passable regions of Latin America are located in the Southern Cone, and guess what’s the difference between the people inhabiting the Southern Cone and those in the rest of Latin America?

          • Jen says:

            The Southern Cone countries were subjected to military juntas (supported by the US as part of Operation Condor) during the 1970s and early 1980s that wiped out much of the middle class, destroyed trade unions and obliterated the academic / artistic intelligentsia by throwing them into prisons, torturing them and disappearing them by tying them up and bundling them into helicopters which then flew over the Atlantic and Pacific Oceans and threw them out there. The victims were usually disembowelled as well, both to attract the attention of sharks and to sink without trace.

            The end result is that people in the Southern Cone countries are probably rather less white than ThatJ thinks, since the working classes there tend to be a mix of white, indigenous and black while the middle classes either perished or fled elsewhere.

          • ThatJ says:

            @Jen

            Chile, Argentina, Uruguay and Southern Brazil are the most European parts of Latin America, and they are located in the Southern Cone.

            They are, by Latin American standards, more white than the rest of the continent, and also more developed.

            Corruption in Latin America is endemic and many Latin American countries — from the Southern Cone or not — went through military dictatorship in the past.

            The other thing is that Chile, Argentina and Uruguay have few blacks — even less than the US, percentage wise. Brazil on the other hand has a lot of blacks and mulattoes, though less in the south.

            • Jen says:

              The main reason that Southern Cone countries have few African-descended people is that these countries received massive numbers of immigrants from Europe, mainly from the Iberian peninsula and Italy, during the 1870s. African communities were also decimated by war – huge numbers of African-descended soldiers died in the War of the Triple Alliance against Paraguay in the early 1870s – and by cholera and yellow fever plagues.

              Also slavery and the importation of slaves in Hispanic parts of Latin America ended much earlier than in Brazil where slavery was abolished quite late (1860s or 1870s). Also Brazil received more slaves than anywhere else in the Western Hemisphere so its African-descended population was always very large and formed a large proportion of the country’s people.

            • Cortes says:

              Southern Cone countries may be more white due to copycat immigration and genocide policies adopted in the second half of the nineteenth century. those Tierra del Fuego folks (what a drag!)

            • Jen says:

              I should add also that supposed economic deadbeat countries like Colombia, Mexico, Venezuela, Central America, the Caribbean nations and most of northern and central Brazil are in the tropical zone where tropical diseases spread by mosquitoes are rife and usually chronic and slow-acting rather than quick and infectious like colds and flu. Chronic diseases weaken people, sap their energy and leave them with life-long problems long after they have gone, like a weakened heart, liver or kidney problems or (in the case of children suffering from repeated bouts of malaria) brain damage.

              A theory about Charles Darwin’s mystery illness that kept him bedridden for much of his life suggests that he might have picked up Chagas disease while travelling in South America during his Beagle journey in the 1820s.

              There are also some tropical diseases like dengue that not only repeat (because they don’t confer immunity) but each time they recur, the occurrence is worse than before and can cause haemorrhagic fever resulting in death.

              Also before lumping all the tropical countries as economic and political basket-cases, ThatJ ought to learn some basic history about each and every one of them. That way, he will discover that several of these nations suffered repeated interference in their domestic affairs by various European nations (Britain and France in particular) and the US. Haiti in particular was forced to pay huge reparations to France over 150 years as a result of winning independence in 1803 (at a time when Napoleon Bonaparte was in charge of France and France was supposed to be the mightiest military power in the world) and was also occupied by US military forces from 1915 to 1935. The US also installed the Duvalier dynasty in Haiti some time in the late 1940s. Guatemala is also an outstanding example where the US overthrew a democratically elected government in 1954 and installed its preferred regime and Honduras suffered a coup engineered by Washington in 2010.

          • yalensis says:

            Dear ThatJ:
            What is your own IQ score, if I may be so bold as to inquire?

      • Jen says:

        “All electrical power was cut in south Edinburgh for the fourth time in four years. The slide of Scotland’s capital towards third-world status coincided with reports that the products of modern Britain’s ‘schools’ and fatherless ‘families’ did not know how to put up a shelf, change a light bulb or mow the grass, not to mention having fallen out of the world’s top 25 countries in level of educational attainment …”

        Odd to see how power cuts can have any correlation with people’s general levels of technical ability and education or on their family structures since power supply and utilities generally depend more or less on systems and networks of machinery, cabling and people with specialised technical qualifications who maintain those structures or who write and maintain the software programs that control those systems. Many if not most systems of infrastructure like the train networks in Britain were built and being maintained at a time before public education became compulsory in that country so general education is not necessarily a requirement for an industrialised society to function.

      • Northern Star says:

        How “aryan” was Canada say..1500 years ago…..?? And for that matter who invited whites to sub-saharan Africa..or Southeast Asia..?? Or Central /South America???
        For those who practiced -and continue to do so-serial mass racial genocides throughout the planet…
        Payback’s a bitch…ain’t it !!!

    • Cortes says:

      Edinburgh tram fiasco was a construct of the Liebore, LieBigDems and Tory parties, for which voters and anti boondoggle SNP handed the perps “their tea” as the locals put it.

  17. ucgsblog says:

    I heard that sanctions were renewed against Russia on June 22nd. It seems that the attempt is to draw out a response from the Russians, so that bridges between Russians and Europeans can be proverbially burned. But if Russians are being given proverbial fire, why not proverbially light those on fire who are behind it? First, counter with even more sanctions. I doubt many Europeans want a sanction war with Russia, and the harder the pain, the more the voters are likely to vote out the current idiots in government. Russians can take the pain, it hasn’t been an easy century. Second, start pointing out to Europeans, your average voters, that it’s the current EU leadership that’s driving Russia and Europe apart, and that Russia’s got an equal partner in China, but Europe’s a junior partner of the US. Third, let’s not forget what a shithead Merkel is. June 22nd, really? I’ve lost all respect for her.

    • Moscow Exile says:

      There ain’t no gain if there ain’t no pain! – as my former rugby coach used to delight in telling us.

      • ucgsblog says:

        Russia’s at the top of the European Olympics at the moment: http://www.baku2015.com/medals/index.html

        • marknesop says:

          I’ll say – the women in particular are really kicking ass, they have almost four times as many gold medals as their next-closest competitors.

          • Moscow Exile says:

            That’s because they’re biologically men – everyone knows that. And they’re all pug-ugly as well.

            I’m sure Doolittle would back me up on this point.

            • marknesop says:

              Funny you should mention him; as I was walking downtown this morning, I met a man and said to him, “Excuse me, do you have the time?”, and he said, “Certainly; it’s 8:17”. I replied, “Thank you – lovely weather we’re having, isn’t it?” and he replied, “Yes, it is”.

              Notice how from the outset, I completely controlled the conversation. Not only that, I bent him to my will and forced him to parrot my viewpoint that the weather is lovely even though I have no expertise in meteorology and my statement was not substantiated in any way save by observation. I totally owned him. I bet my wife is younger than his, too, and if the conversation had gone on any longer I could have made him admit it. My social experiment in mind control was a complete success – as I knew it would be, because it was mine and I thought of it.

              Now that we have that jpg he sent us – which he obviously meant for us to have; it came from him and is not copyrighted – featuring a picture (a drawing, actually, looks like) of a considerably younger and saner-looking Curt with the phrase “You’ve been owned” superimposed, perhaps someone who is good with Photoshop could alter the text to “You’ve been blown”, or “You’ve been annoyed” or “you’ve been jerk-bombed”, something to that effect, without changing the picture, and we could use it occasionally on other blogs when the situation merits.

            • Jen says:

              “That’s because they’re biologically men – everyone knows that. And they’re all pug-ugly as well …”

              Wow, Mr Wotan worshipper, you’re telling me … look at these steroid-stacked steamrollers, each of them butt-ugly triple Y-chromosome hombres:

          • ucgsblog says:

            Top 5 leading medalists? All Russian women, all look amazing and all are really smart. It’s true what they say about Baku – once a playground for Russian girls, always a playground for Russian girls 😀

        • ThatJ says:

          @marknesop

          https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/2015_European_Games#Controversies

          There are two NGOs cited in the Controversies section of the Wikipedia entry for the games.

          Guess their names?

          If you guessed Amnesty International and Human Rights Watch, I have a prize for you. There is no prisoner of conscience in Germany, though. It’s a first world country occupied by a foreign power, so the government is alright. Being thrown into jail for questioning history is not an abuse, it’s the right thing to do, right? Yes, it’s right if you are AI or HRW.

          • yalensis says:

            Dear ThatJ:

            So, is this the phase of your cycle, where you try to slip “German revisionism” issue into every comment? Sometimes using a crowbar to make it fit the context?

            Why don’t you just come out and say what you mean?
            You believe that German historians have the right the praise the Nazi period, and that anti-speech laws should be rescinded.

            If you want to debate that point, fine, it would be an interesting debate.
            I know that this is an important issue for you personally, even though you don’t live in Germany, but have an interest in rehabilitating cultural Nazism.

            But don’t try to coyly slip this into everything else, like you did, above, with the Putin economic speech. You tried to make it sound like Putin endorsed your view, and he wasn’t actually saying anything about that particular issue.

          • ucgsblog says:

            Thankfully, few care about AI or HRW at these games. Politician wannabes need to learn to let sports be sports and leave sports alone. I mean don’t get me wrong, indict idiots like Blazer, but other than that, leave sports alone. Sports, like education, are a net good, and so are these games. Wrestling, Sambo, Judo – that’s what Caucasian boys and girls need to do, as that fights gangs like nothing else in the Kavkaz. And no amount of HRW/AI complaining about stuff that Azerbaijan does will change that. Should Azerbaijan be criticized for human rights abuses? Absolutely, but this isn’t the venue to do it. If I’m having dinner, I don’t want some random guy running in and bitching about politics. It’s rude and inconsiderate.

    • et Al says:

      …so that bridges between Russians and Europeans can be proverbially burned.

      I disagree. Like over burnt toast, if you scrape off the inedible bits (all the PR fluff and bs statements vs. quite carefully selected ‘smart’ sanctions that are remarkably limited), most of it is still good. so, Paradise is somewhat postponed…if you will.

      US and EU strategic interests are fundamentally divergent. All the papering over the cracks with the lowest common denominator actions whether by Brussels, NATO or the local dogs and cats shelter are just that. The five stages of grief, innit? I hope I’m not wrong, but my feeling is that the US is channeling Nixon playin’ crayzee.

      • ucgsblog says:

        Much like Putin doesn’t run Russia from a secret base in the Kremlin, Obama doesn’t run US policy. It’s run by Neocons and Neolibs who “heroically” misinform Obama to get their bomb-addicted needs met. When Kerry dared to take the line that NATO allies took, he slowly started to be pushed out. However, support for Neos is dropping quicker than the Confederate flag in the southern states, which is why they’re trying to push Obama to score a foreign policy victory, but they’re so inept, that they can only produce defeat after defeat. Why in the World the current EU leadership is following that idiocy, is beyond me. They don’t even have local support: private corporations are slowly withdrawing their funding, the public wants to throw rotten tomatoes at them, (not proverbially,) and somehow they’re the ones that EU listens to. Amazing.

        http://www.dailykos.com/story/2015/06/05/1390724/-America-s-Most-Realistic-Effective-Foreign-Policy-Role-Indispensable-MoneyBalling-Independent#

        72% of Americans are anti-Neos. It’s never been that high before.

  18. ThatJ says:

    DINNERS FOR EUROBABBLERS

    As France, Switzerland, Hungary and Austria took steps towards closing their borders against A/A’s streaming into them from Italy (in France’s case sending 200 heavily padded gendarmes to Ventimiglia, on the Riveria, to force 6K A/A’s back into Italy and seal the border against them), the Italian prime minister, Matteo Renzi, said that, if no “equitable deal” were struck to spread the wretched of the earth across the whole of western Europe, Rome would start issuing migrants with temporary visas allowing them to travel elsewhere in Europe, stop receiving the hundreds of boats arriving from Libya and refuse docking for foreign ships rescuing those stranded at sea (Guardian, 16 vi).

    But, meeting in Luxembourg, EU home secretaries could only bring themselves to plan jolly celebrations of the ‘borderless Europe’ thought to have been begun by the Schengen agreement (which Britain, Éire and Denmark had managed to avoid agreeing). It was thought that countries like Poland and Romania might take a few more dinners ooops migrants if the EU pressed ahead with its equally daft policy of irritating Russia over the Ukraine.

    Ukip’s Nigel Farage warned that the hordes of aspirimmigrants crossing the Med could soon be “of biblical proportions” – in the millions; and that Isis would insert its fanatics among the boat people. Even Guardian correspondents were 50% in favour of halting the migration (17 vi).

    The Pope suggested that those opposed to the A/A invasion should “seek forgiveness”; but his comments were rejected by the leader of Italy’s anti-immigration Northern League, Matteo Salvini, who retorted on Italian radio by asking, ‘How many refugees are there in the Vatican?’

    Hungary’s foreign minister announced plans to close his country’s border with Serbia to stem the flow of illegal migrants. The Hungarians would build a four-metre high, 110-mile long fence along the border in response to the growing number of migrants (Daily Mail, 17 vi). Hungary had the highest inflow of migrants per caput in Europe, taking in 55K in the first half of 2015 – representing a 60-fold increase in immigration in three years (Guardian, 18 vi).

    In Australia, it was revealed that the policy of paying boat people to stay away from Oz had been introduced by the previous Labor government. {This would be helpful news for British Labourites as they searched for new policies – with the aim, if they were wise, of winning back nationalistic, anti-Muslim votes that had gone to Ukip.}

    TRUMP JUMPS IN

    Galvanizing American Republicans’ search for a candidate to win the White House in 2016, billionaire Donald Trump, 69 and father of five and on his third marriage, put his name forward just a day after Jeb Bush had done likewise (New York Times, 16 vi).

    DT said he would stay the course – unlike in previous Republican selection campaigns when he had achieved only 5% support. DT flirted with a fine array of conservative/realist positions, having maintained his Presbyterean faith, having said Blacks were born idle, having denounced unwed motherhood, having spurned ‘climate change’ hysteria, having opposed abortion and third-world immigration (wanting a new Great Wall of China against Mexican invaders – whom he called “criminals,” drug peddlers and “rapists”) and having been a pal of flaky rightist Sarah Palin; but he was liberal about trade, believing ‘May the best man win’ (usually himself, except when Muslims were allowed to cheat on oil deals by an Obama-enfeebled USA).

    His aim to ‘Make America great again’ might be unexceptionable; but he expressed it with enthusiasm, and his stress on the importance of being “smart,” “bright,” and “talented,” as opposed to being “stupid” was refreshing even if terms like ‘IQ’ and ‘the g factor’ never cropped up. His eldest daughter Ivanka

    characterized him as ‘the opposite of political correctness’; and he had even been brave enough to face down comedian Ali G’s faux-naἵve TV interviewing which elicited peecee politeness from most celebrities (the only other notable exception being leftist Tony Benn).

    A showman of clear, strong and nicely detailed views, The Donald would surely prove more watchable than most other Presidential hopefuls put together; and thus whittle down the 50% of US voters who claimed to dislike him.

    MIGRANTS REJECTED

    Having easily won re-election as Governor of the northern Italian region of Veneto, Luca Zaia, a star of the surging anti-immigrant Northern League party, wasted little time showing voters that he had heard and understood their demands. Claiming that the sight of African migrants would have a “devastating effect” on the tourism industry, Zaia called for local officials across his region to begin clearing all reception centres and other housing occupied by migrants near tourist areas (Observer, 14 vi).

    His decision reflected the dismay that had been expressed to him in “every way and in every place,” Zaia claimed, adding that all further placements should be halted. This was the latest salvo in an escalating standoff between Zaia – together with other rightwing governors in Liguria and Lombardy – and the government in Rome, where argument had broken out over a plan by the centrist Prime Minister, Matteo Renzi, to distribute tens of thousands of African migrants and refugees across Italy.

    http://gfactor.blogspot.com/

    • ucgsblog says:

      Speaking of Farage, where’s Colliemum? I miss reading her well thought out arguments.

      The problem with Trump is that he’s not serious about it, he’s just doing it for the show. I mean the announcement came from him as he descended from an escalator in a clear “Stairway to Heaven” reference, as if he’s coming from Heaven, to be, (to quote the Donald,) the best jobs president that God created. I don’t dislike Trump, like I do with Bush or Carson, but I don’t trust him to be serious to lead.

      “Tonight on America’s Apprentice – which country will get no fly zoned? The Donald is really unhappy with Botswana’s job creation, but Malawi’s recent recession might make it the target for the Donald. The UN already issued a condemnation, but Trump was quick to explain – ‘you see, the UN is like a lawyer, you sort of has to listen to his advice, but not really’ stated the Donald.”

      • ThatJ says:

        I have noticed Colliemum’s absence. No idea why she’s absent lately.

        Trump will do the Republicans no favor by aiming at the presidency, he has no chance and his (admittedly arguably realist) views are unfortunately too unpalatable to the public. He’s outspoken, a quality that is adverse to political life in the US.

        • ucgsblog says:

          It’s not that he’s outspoken, so are Bernie Sanders and Rand Paul, both of whom have a chance, even though the “Fair and Balanced”, “Most Trusted Name in News” and “Progressive” media will hilariously deny that, but they don’t have the whole aura of “I’m a deity, kneel before me plebs” that Trump has. I think Paul’s the only Republican who can beat Clinton, out of the ones that are running, and when faced with a choice of “do you want Clinton or Paul,” I think Republicans will shift towards Paul. Then again, I’m overly optimistic.

          • marknesop says:

            I think the Republican nominee is going to be Rubio, simply because the conservatives who completely control the nomination process like the brand of shit he spreads. And Clinton will likely be the Democratic nominee, simply because the Democrats are locked in such a loop of despair that they don’t know what else to do. Rubio will probably win. That’s my guess.

            • ThatJ says:

              If they choose Rubio, it’s because he’s Hispanic. The Republicans want to court the Mestizo vote as White votes alone are not enough… anymore. In the last election, Romney won the white vote (61% vs 39% to Obama) and still lost the election.

              Rand Paul is not like his father, but he’s among the best candidates.

              • marknesop says:

                They’re Hispanics. I haven’t seen the term “Mestizos” since my high-school geography books, and that was in the early 70’s. Do you actually have a contemptuous and dehumanizing term for every race except whites? I am adamantly opposed to a Republican win because it does not matter who is the President – the conservative hardliners make all the decisions and they are wedded to ever more corporatism and profit-taking for the wealthy. But it really does not matter much because Obama was the last hope for a Democratic president who could unify Americans from both sides of the aisle and get back to something like the values that made America the greatest country and the envy of the world. Obama was an even worse failure than George W. Bush, although both claimed the mantle of “Uniter”. Things have gone too far now to pull back; we’re past the point of no return. Hillary would just make the sides cave in a little faster.

              • ucgsblog says:

                It’s called the Latino vote ThatJ. Romney lost the election because he lost middle class white votes in swing states. Last election wasn’t about racism, it was about Republicans not giving a shit about the middle class, whilst the Democrats didn’t give a shit either, but at least they pretended to give a shit. Middle class votes in swing states is what the voting’s all about. Romney’s 47% comment is as valid a reason that he lost the election, as the Latino vote.

            • ucgsblog says:

              So, those brainiacs would rather have Rubio lose to Clinton than Paul beat Clinton? Also, I’m hoping the Dems wise up and nominate Sanders, but they don’t have a Republican-Clinton issue, so not as much drive as Republicans.

        • marknesop says:

          Colliemum is not well. I’m hoping she will be OK, but she has had to take a little hiatus from commenting.

      • marknesop says:

        Trump does not love his fellow Americans, and makes no secret of his opinion that a good deal of them are useless freeloaders; America Inc. is just something else he wants to be the CEO of. None of the other candidates loves his/her fellow Americans either (with the possible exception of Mike Huckabee, because it’s his job), and all probably believe their constituents are lazy and a little stupid or else they would be running for President, but they have the good sense to pretend to be populist. From the vantage point of being mad as a box of frogs, The Donald disdains pretense.

        • ucgsblog says:

          He doesn’t want to run on trumped up pretenses.

          • marknesop says:

            Ha, ha!!! I saw what you did there.

          • Jen says:

            Haven’t Donald Trump’s companies been bankrupt about 3 or 4 times? At least when he wants to be CEO of Yoo-Ess-Ay, Inc., he can say he’s had experience running a company with no money.

            • ucgsblog says:

              True, but he got out of bankruptcy quite nicely. He’d make a great businessman if not for all of the “hurr durr me b Trump” b/s. Thus far, he’s the presidential candidate voted most likely to turn “No Child Left Behind” into “Child Apprentice”, which would, ironically, still be better than NCLB.

              • marknesop says:

                Ha, ha, ha!! That’s pretty funny.

              • Jen says:

                “Child Apprentice” would be the one reality TV show where the children compete to be fired by turning in work that deliberately mocks the show’s competitive values and the last kid left standing would be dragged kicking and screaming in chains to join the rest of the sobbing student body at the Donald Trump Academy.

        • Cortes says:

          Donald means “world ruler” originally given as a nickname (eik or additional name) to Hebridean/Norwegian Somerled. Now with the Dark Lord in Mordor and Donald’s in Scotland NYC and at the EU, the Vikings have a lot to answer for. Trump’s mother was Hebridean.

          • Moscow Exile says:

            That’s interesting to know!

            Vladimir means “Master of the World” as well (cf . Vladivostok – “Lord of the East” and Vladikavkaz – “Lord of the Caucasus”).

            I’ve always passed off to my son, Vladimir, that the English equivalent of his name is Walter; it’s not: “Walter” means “Ruler of the Army”, but I thought it near enough. I told him this because my son Volodya was getting rather pissed off with being called “Vlad” on the Internet.

            I don’t think, though, that he will appreciate being called Donald.

            Then again, maybe not.

            Тихий Дон ?

            • Cortes says:

              Basil Cottle, once of Bristol Univ has a wonderful book entitled “Names”; he also produced the Penguin Dictionary of British Surnames which is excellent on Celtic patronymics – the Macs and Welsh Ps. FYI

            • Jen says:

              The Scandinavian name Waldemar is a close equivalent of Vladimir.

              • Moscow Exile says:

                The Scandinavian Waldemar is not a “close equivalent” of Vladimir: it is “Vladimir” – but in the orthography of a language that uses the Latin alphabet.

                “Vladimir” (Владимир) was pinched from the Slavs by the Germanic tribes.

                In Polish, “Vladimir” is “Włodzimierz”. (Sounds a bit like “vwodshimeersh”.)

                The “w” in Polish is pronounced as “v” in English, and the Polish letter “ł” is pronounced rather like an English “w”, hence Poles saying the name of the Polish city known as Łódź sound to English ears as though they are saying something like “wudzh”, and this Polish name – Włodzimierz Cimoszewicz – sounds like this: Włodzimierz Cimoszewicz.

                • yalensis says:

                  This borrowing of the name “Waldemar” by the Germanic tribes (from the Slavic tribes) is a big deal in Slavic historical linguistics. It proves that around that time, when the word was borrowed, proto-Slavs pronounced the name something like “Voldimir”.

                  A subsequent series of sound changes is known as pleophony and is used to distinguish between the various, ensuing Slavic dialects.

                  Linguistics students informally call this the “TORT/TERT” rule.
                  This type of closed syllable becomes different things in different dialects, for example the proto-Slavic word for city “gord” or “gard” (possibly a German borrowing), becomes:

                  “gorod” in East Slavic dialects (e.g., “Nov-gorod”)
                  “grad” in South Slavic dialects (e.g., any city name ending in -grad)

                  Similarly, with the “Volodimir/Vladimir” pair.

                  The wiki entry gives many other common examples of this metathesis/pleophony.
                  One confusing feature is that Russian combines words with both E. Slavic and S. Slavic forms, for example “moloko” (milk, E. Slavic format) vs. “mleko-pitajushchij” – “mammal”, literally “milk-eating” – South Slavic format). All derived from pro-European word “*milk”, it goes without saying.

                  Reason being, the influence of Old Church Slavonic, which is a South Slavic dialect, sometimes called “Old Bulgarian”, on the development of standard literary Russian language.

                  Just like English has Germanic words for low-style and equivalent French words for high-style;
                  so too does Russian have East Slavic words for low-style, and equivalent Old Church Slavonic (South Slavic) words for high-style.

    • Tim Owen says:

      Jesus u are a one man clown car. Not easy to achieve with this competitive field.

      To quote Boris: Fuck off and die.

    • marknesop says:

      What are A/A’s?

      • ThatJ says:

        I think it’s an acronym for generic Africans/Arabs forcing themselves upon Europe, as they seem to lead an unhappy life when living among themselves, or in neighbouring countries ethnically more similar to them, a behavior that is at odds with historical European refuge movements. It is the norm for whites to flee to a neighbouring country or to a distant European-derived country founded by whites through conquest (back then it was a fair game, the Turks did it, too — at our expense). Put together, these destinations account to no more than 30% of the inhabitable landmass of the world. It leaves 70% for other races.

        Deedless humanitarians insist we must take care of all them. They will shriek if you say this to them, but hey, as I said, nobody believed 50 years ago that Mohammed and its spelling variations would one day become the most common name for baby boys in London, yet it did. So the genocidists oops deedless humanitarians conceal their intent until it’s too late. You may tell them in the end, “I told you so”, and the apes would still throw back at you the same accusations of yore, even though you were proven right.

        • marknesop says:

          Once again, if they did not let in people for whom there is no work, and undertook the required supervision to ensure those capable of working did not simply sit at home and claim endless benefits, there would be nowhere near the problem there is. There would still be a problem, because once established, families often want to bring over Grandma and Grandpa, as we did, and they frequently can’t work. My father-in-law still works, and the two of them help out with the household work as well so it is in all a very equitable arrangement and they have never claimed a dime in welfare benefits. In fact, in Canada people you sponsor as immigrants are not allowed to become a burden on society – you have to qualify (through your assessed income) as a sponsor and then those you bring into the country are your financial responsibility for 10 years. But other countries have different immigration rules.

          Not as simple as just marching them off to the ovens, I know, but it seems to work pretty well here.

  19. yalensis says:

    Follow-up to the Valentina Lisitsa concert story.
    Val had a successful trip to Donbass and performed her piano concert of classaical music for the residents there. She performed alongside the Academic Symphonic Orchestra named after Prokofiev.
    The concert was timed for 22 June, the “Day of Sorrow” for people in the ex-Soviet Republics, as that was the day when Nazis invaded.

    The concert took place in the Park of the Leninist Komsomol in downtown Donetsk.
    People began to gather early for the free concert. By 19:30 there were already over 1000 people.
    By the end of the concert there were over 10,000 people.

    The concert consisted of the following pieces:
    -Orchestra performed Shostakovich 5th Symphony (1937)
    -Concerto by Sergei Rakhmaninov
    -Sonata by Prokofiev
    -music of Vano Muradeli

    Having played several piano pieces, Lisitsa spoke to the audience. Knowing that Lisitsa had emigrated from Kiev way back in 1991, the audience were astonished to hear her speaking in pure Russian language. Lisitsa expressed her delight at performing for the Donbass residents. She commented:

    «70 лет прошло с того дня, как мы победили фашизм один раз. И теперь нам предстоит та же задача: защитить Европу, защитить весь мир от той от той коричневой чумы, которая опять поднимает голову. Вы стоите на линии фронта, защищая весь мир, все человечество от этого. Спасибо вам большое, мне невероятно, до слез приятно сегодня быть рядом с вами», — сказала пианистка

    “Seventy years have passed since that day, when we vanquished fascism for the first time. And now it has come to be, that we have to do exactly the same thing again, to defend Europe, to defend the whole world, against that very same brown (fascist) plague, which again raises its ugly head. You [residents of Donbass] are standing on the front lines, defending the entire world, all of mankind, from this (plague). We are enormously grateful to you, it is marvelous to be here, I am delighted unto tears to be here alongside you all.”

    Lisitsa’s speech was sincere and from the heart. The audience responded with thunderous applause.

    Next, Alexander Zakharchenko, the President of the unrecognized Donetsk Peoples Republic, limped up onto the stage (on his crutches) in order to offer Valentina a bouquet of roses, and to thank her for her courage.


    «Хочу сказать вам большое спасибо за ваш подвиг, мужество, за ваш труд и вашу твердую гражданскую позицию. Пусть неточно, но я попробую повторить вашу фразу: для любой страны самое страшное — когда сосед пытается убить соседа. Прошел год, на Украине остались те же олигархи, та же разруха и нищета, уже тысячи убитых и миллион беженцев. И вы, Валентина, войдете в историю как человек, который имел мужество приехать сюда к нам на фронт», — заявил Захарченко.

    “I want to say an enormous thank you, for your actions, your courage, for your hard work and your firm civic position. I will attempt to repeat, however inaccurately, your phrase: For any country, the most fearful thing is when a person tries to kill their neighbour. A year has passed, Ukraine is left with the very same oligarchs, the very same destitution and poverty, already thousands of killed, and a million refugees. And you, Valentina, you will go into history as a person, who had the courage to come to us here, at the front.”

    Zakharchenko also mentioned the bad people, who have been persecuting Valentina for her political views.
    Next, Zakharchenko invited onto the stage veterans of the Great Patriotic War, who had been given the best seats near the front, along with soldiers from the DPR.

    The concert ended with everybody singing the legendary anti-fascist hymn.
    [yalensis: here is a youtube video, NOT from above concert, of legendary Soviet singer Muslim Magamaev singing this song, just so people can relate to the song.]

    Piece ended noting that Lisitsa did not just tickle the ivory, then fly away.
    She intends to remain in Donbass for an extended visit, doing concerts in various towns, to help lift the mood of the people.

    • yalensis says:

      P.S. Here are the words to the song in above video by Magomaev.
      This is the song which, according to the Navigator article, the entire audience sang together at the end of Valentina’s concert.

      TRANSLATION INTO ENGLISH

      Buchenwald Bell

      1
      People of the world, arise for a minute,
      Listen, listen: Hear the ringing from all sides,
      In Buchenwald the bell is ringing,
      The bell rings, the bell rings.
      In this coppery sound is reborn,
      Is strengthened, righteous blood.
      It is the victims coming alive again from the ashes,
      And they rose up again, and they rose up again!
      And they arose,
      And they arose,
      And they arose again!

      2
      Hundreds of thousands of people burned alive,
      Form themselves into rows and ranks,
      International columns,
      They speak with us, they speak with us,
      Do you hear the claps of thunder?
      It is not thunder – it’s not a hurricane!
      Wrapped in atomic whirlwind,
      It is the ocean moaning, the Pacific Ocean,
      It moans,
      It moans,
      The Quiet Ocean!

      3
      People of the world, arise for a minute,
      Listen, listen: Hear the ringing from all sides,
      In Buchenwald the bell is ringing,
      The bell rings, the bell rings.
      The sound swims, it swims above the whole world,
      And the entire ephyr buzzes:
      People of the world, be thricefold alert,
      Defend the world, defend the world!
      Defend,
      Defend,
      Defend the world!

    • marknesop says:

      Inspiring. She’s a brave lady. I hope she will be safe, because you know the Nazis would love to get her and they must have some sympathizers still in the Donbas.

      Hopefully she will inspire others to leave the side of Ukraine in the realization that the Ukraine they knew is dead.

    • ThatJ says:

      “Seventy years have passed since that day, when we vanquished fascism for the first time. And now it has come to be, that we have to do exactly the same thing again, to defend Europe, to defend the whole world, against that very same brown (fascist) plague, which again raises its ugly head. You [residents of Donbass] are standing on the front lines, defending the entire world, all of mankind, from this (plague). We are enormously grateful to you, it is marvelous to be here, I am delighted unto tears to be here alongside you all.”

      She missed the target by a wide margin. No mention of the American project for Eurasia or the role to be played by Ukraine against Russia. The last thing that the “Anglo”-Zionist elites want for Europe is nationalism. Unfortunately, she doesn’t know this and I’m sure most people don’t either.

      In her mind, Ukraine is unleashing Nazism in Europe with the support of the racist United States. The Russian state is recognised as being the antithesis of fascism, so the implicit knowledge is that the emerging metaphorical Fourth Reich is to be used against the communistic Russia, with the Donbass residents being the first victims of many to come. Lol, I kid you not, this is how many people like her see the situation in Ukraine. This idea is especially prominent in “non-respectable” Trotskyite sites like globalresearch.ca (for dissidents) while the “respectable” mainstream ones (e.g. Huffington Post) downplay the narrative inside Ukraine aimed against Russia (and you can be sure that these sites would gang up on the country/government if the victims were the right kind) or they resort to condemning Russia for its non-liberasty.

      The Zionists love it when the goyim squabble among themselves and “nationalism” gets blamed. Ukraine is only a peon in the chess game against Russia, and the Zionists understandably support Western Ukrainians’ revenge fantasies. It so happens that Western Ukrainians were besties with the Nazis. The US doesn’t care, as long as there’s an ideology that feeds on Russophobia, the US will support it. Hell, if the Ukies were Russophobic commies, all the better for Uncle Shlomo.

      “Defending the entire world” is a bit too much, no? The violence is directed only against Russians or Russia-friendly Europeans. The alien interlopers in Europe are exempt from harm by Uncle Shlomo and indeed, were imported especially to prevent a very prominent minority and its destructive practices from standing out among the gentile masses. The alien interlopers, along with dissatisfied whites, are needed to form a coalition against the you-know-who. Together they form yesterday’s proletariat.

      PS: My post was deleted, I don’t know why. Maybe because I posted the entire article from TOO whereas only the link would suffice.

      • yalensis says:

        Dear ThatJ:
        Did you actually expect Valentina Lisitsa to stand up in front of the Donbass residents and spout YOUR ideology? About the goyim and the Trotskyites and all that bullshit?

        Like Tim said, you are a one-man clown car.

  20. yalensis says:

    In law enforcement news:
    Today Ukrainian government presented their new array of police uniforms.

    Wags noted that the new uniforms bear a striking resemblance to the uniforms worn by the heroes of the American comic film “Police Academy”.

    • Jen says:

      At last overloaded costume departments at various Hollywood studios and the BBC have a new client base to dump … er, sell off the over-supply.

      New uniforms for Ukrainian paramilitary police:

      New uniforms for Ukrainian marines:

      New uniforms for Banderite battalion fighters:

  21. Tim Owen says:

    As a little errr… pallete cleanser after our recent recent get-to-know-you session with one Curt Doolittle I propose the following:

    Come to think of it, I would be willing to contribute to sending thatJ off to a summer camp based on these theories, though we might need to also provide some incentive to, you know, the Other side to accept him.

    Who’s in?

    • yalensis says:

      That’s an interesting statistic he quotes, that 96% of the time, this method works, just bringing opposing people together to work on something. That is an impressive success rate. I think the key here is to get them WORKING on something together, not just sitting around talking about their differences. Marxists would call this method “Praxis in action”. It was what Marx counted on, when workers from different and sometimes opposing villages would be forced to work side by side at the same lathe in the factory, for example.

      I have my own modest example. At work, there is one guy in my immediate team that I didn’t get along with. We were bickering with each other from Day #1. (His fault mostly, long story…)

      Then the boss in his infinite wisdom forced us to work together on a joint project, and we started getting along better, just because we had to. We discovered that we have pretty much the same philosophy when it comes to technical strategies, and we were also brought more together in opposition to a THIRD person, who had a different and opposing technical strategy. (Nothing builds friendship like having a common enemy – LOL!)

      Long story short, the two of us still don’t really like each other, but we stopped bickering, at least, and I think there is a bit more mutual respect, since we both discovered, that the other one is quite competent at what they do.

      • bolasete says:

        “Praxis” –definite sign of jurgen habermas contamination, the frankfurt school. no wonder an ‘occidental tourist’, uh oh, i meant observer trashes you as a fellow trot . beware! opera and your sense of humor only covers minor sins!

        • yalensis says:

          Hee hee, while pretending to understand half of what you said–
          I LIVE to irritate the the lumpen-proletariat!
          Who don’t grok “praxis” ’cause they don’t prax. Capish?

        • Oddlots says:

          I remember a professor of mine telling this – apocryphal? – story about Habermas. As I recall one of his famous pronouncements was “theory and praxis are one and the same.” Apparently one of his more cheeky grad students asked him in a seminar: “Herr Doktor Doktor Habermas, if “theory and praxis are one and the same” why is your theory so radical and your practice so conservative?” his reply apparently was: “Ahhh, well what you’re missing is that theory and praxis are one and the same in theory… but in practice it’s quite different.”

          • bolasete says:

            the ‘thrust’ of habermas & theorie und praxis – as well as the Frankfurt school – was that it had become dangerous to be a Marxist in the west (duh!), so he (and they) cloaked their ideas in impenetrable prose for safety. of course, in the us they became trots and zionists (the very people ‘the occidental observer’ writes about). being condemned from birth to be a reader i preferred source material – m & e & l & t &s, even enver hoxha! i always found stalin an effective antidote to bs.

  22. ThatJ says:

    Meanwhile in Slovakia…

    Anti-immigrant protest organisers seek to unite extremists
    http://spectator.sme.sk/c/20058361/anti-immigrant-protest-organisers-seek-to-unite-extremists.html

    Fico ponders referendum on migrant quotas
    http://spectator.sme.sk/c/20058363/fico-ponders-referendum-on-migrant-quotas.html

    About 14.000 racial rights activists faced a counter-protest by about 300 Trotskyites who support the genocide of the Slovak people. The “great humanitarians” will, of course, not volunteer anywhere in the world to help the needy, nor will they donate any aid out of their pockets. Their “humanitarianism” is based on using the unwilling, but in their eyes expendable, Slovak population and sacrificing their posteriority in order to help “lift” the world’s downtrodden. The designation of Slovaks as some sort of slave people whose existence is to be sacrificed by enriching the ego of arrogant deedless Trotskyites (modern slavemasters) didn’t go well with the majority of the population.

    Here, again, we see the EU pushing for the genocide of Europeans in the new member states. I’ve been alerting about this development for a long time now. As I said, you can just compare the major cities of the Zionist-led Western Europe on one side, and the Russian-led former Soviet states on the other side. A walk in any major city of either side will reveal what this “European Union” is all about. An European Union without Europeans is worthless. Moscow could have just as easily imported a few million poor labourers from Africa and elsewhere, for the sake of diminishing the strength of nationalists, but it didn’t.

    Facebook page of the event:
    https://www.facebook.com/events/1607363829540197/

    The western neighbor of Slovakia also had its protests recently.

    Germany: Sturzenberger leads rally against Islamification and asylum “abuse”

    • Pavlo Svolochenko says:

      Are you sure you wouldn’t be happier on Curt’s side of the fence? All you’d have to do is learn to hate Russians.

      Beyond that, rot and perish, Europe.

      You will not be missed.

    • ThatJ says:

      @Pavlo Svolochenko

      I am not on Curt’s team. He’s a proponent of modern Western civilization and wants to see Ukraine included in it. Attaching Ukraine to a rotting corpse is foolish to the extreme.

      Ukraine is just an appendix to the grand conspiracy already well underway in Europe and in time it will become clear to everyone — or would, if Russia didn’t get in the plotters’ way.

      I do not consider Europe sovereign, therefore I cannot in conscience blame it entirely.

    • yalensis says:

      Dear ThatJ:

      You make quite a blanket statement about those 300 “Trotskyites” – that they “support the genocide of the Slovak people”. Is it right there in their party platform?
      ‘We demand the genocide of the Slovak people!” – LOL!

      I did a bit of research on these counter-protestors , they call themselves “Bratislava Without Nazis”, I wanted to see if I could either validate or disprove your statement that they support the genocide of the Slovak people.

      The counter-protest was convened by the “Bratislava without Nazis Initiative”, with around 30 high-profile personalities supporting it with a statement entitled “Together Against Hate”, TASR wrote. They view the setting up of the wartime Slovak Republic “one of the most tragic moments in Slovakia’s history”, claiming that some Slovak citizens were deprived of their rights and suffered repression and sometimes death.

      Okay, so they oppose the wartime Slovak Republic, which was Hitler client state.
      Obviously pro-genocide types.

      Okay, here is some info about them which I found.
      Their leader is a guy named Robert Mihály. I can’t find much about him. Is he Jewish? I don’t know. Does he support the genocide of the Slovak people? Dubious, but I don’t really know for sure. Maybe he does. Maybe he has a whole plan in place, gas chambers and all.. “In you go, Slovaks!”

      Do you see what I am getting at, you creep? You spout your own ideology incessantly and try to put it in the mouths of others. In your world-view, opposing Nazis is equivalent to supporting genocide. Upside-down world, maybe?

      • kat kan says:

        Considering his surname, he is ethnic Hungarian. There are a lot of those in Bratislava, which for a while was the capital of Hungary (while the Ottomans had taken over Budapest). Their minority rights are respected, and their cultural activities (including Hungarian language schooling for their kids) are supported with aid from Hungary, which also hands out passports to all ethnics who got trimmed off after WW1. I doubt he’d want to genocide his friends and neighbours.

    • Jen says:

      @ ThatJ: How do you know your beloved racial activists in Slovakia are not being paid by the same clandestine individuals, politicians and groups in Washington, London, Brussels and other parts of the West as the neo-Nazis in Ukraine are? Far-right groups often arise at “opportune” moments when the mainstream centre-right political parties are at a loss for ideas and direction. Extremist right groups serve to deflect public attention from the MSM centre-right who also cherry-pick the extremists’ ideologies for inspiration. We saw this happen in Australia over a decade ago when the Liberal / National Coalition mined ideas from One Nation and hung out One Nation’s leader Pauline Hanson to twist in the torrent of public ridicule and a jail term for misuse of party funds. The same process whereby mainstream politics absorbs extremist right-wing ideas is occurring in Germany where Angela Merkel’s Christian Democratic Union is edging closer to the position of Pegida.

    • ThatJ says:

      @Jen

      How do you know your beloved racial activists in Slovakia are not being paid by the same clandestine individuals, politicians and groups in Washington, London, Brussels and other parts of the West as the neo-Nazis in Ukraine are?

      Simple: there is no use for the nationalists in Slovakia. They hinder the plans of the Anglo-Zionist elite for the most recent members of the “West”, i.e. the former Soviet states, Slovakia being an obvious example (and Ukraine will become a victim of this strategy, too, which is why I have opposed the Maidan “nationalists” since the beginning). In the countries where the Anglo-Zionists have been in charge since 1945, the situation is so precarious that in terms of demographic integrity, Western and Eastern Europe are two worlds apart. The nationalists especially oppose racial dispossession/colonialism and sodomy, and the Anglo-Zionist strategy is to import racial aliens, pay the local liberasts, set up various NGOs and get a coalition of sodomites/aliens and other socially deviant groups going. They are the new proletariat that the soulmates of Trotsky in Washington hope to use. The enemies of the identitarians use typical slogans and buzzwords, of Western origin, of which I’m an adapt at spotting, being that I’ve been observing and studying Zionist subversion for almost a decade now. It is exactly what they do in the UK, in Germany, in France and elsewhere. The genocidists — their ringleaders — are more than likely on the payroll of Western NGOs, and private ones too, such as Soros’.

      • Jen says:

        But you don’t really know, do you? Otherwise you would not have spouted the Curt-Doolittle rubbish that you have. You have no evidence that the Slovak racial rights activists are or are not being funded from abroad and nor do you know whether the counter-protest was being funded or not funded from abroad either. You are only fitting the Slovak situation into your narrative which you assume to be correct.

        • yalensis says:

          Frankly, I wish that ThatJ would go away, far from here, to join the Slovak fascists in their struggle for Slovak fascism.
          There, in the streets of Bratislava, he could freely fight against hordes of Zionists, Trotskyites, Jews, Romani, sodomites, and (….) Hungarians…

          [er, yes, I did a bit of research, and it seems the Slovak neo-Nazis are not very keen on Hungarians either, seems they both claim the same strip of land, or something like that…]

  23. Moscow Exile says:

    Meanwhile, out in the provinces:

    Navalny – full of shit or what?

    At Kaluga somebody asks Navalny about his little scam in Montenegro that was revealed when he was running for Moscow mayor (remember, Chubais’ daughter was involved as well?), and lying bastard Navalny replies that all these allegations were unfounded and that his accusers had no supportive documents, which documents are shown in the video as the West’s poster boy lies through his teeth.

    Talk about flogging a dead horse! Has nobody at Langley seen the latest Levada polls?

    Putin’s policies are now at a record level of popularity amongst the Russians, 89% of whom support the Evil One’s actions.

    • yalensis says:

      Minor Correction:
      I am pretty sure it was GAIDAR’s daughter, not Chubais daughter, who did the Montenegro scam with Navalny.

      As musical accompaniment to my comment, I have selected “Vilia”, the fake-Montenegran folk song from Lehar’s operetta “Die Lustige Witwe”:

  24. Drutten says:

    Edward Lucas is at it again, apparently. This so-called “report” was widely quoted in Swedish, Finnish and Norwegian media today:

    Click to access Baltic%20Sea%20Security%20Report-%20%282%29.compressed.pdf

    Russia bad, Russia this and that. Russian aggression. Russian aggression. Russian aggression. You know the drill.

    Lucas alleges that the Russian drills earlier this year were essentially invasion rehearsals, aimed at Sweden, Norway etc. He offers no evidence of this, only wild conjecture. Lucas also does not mention that the March readiness drill in the north he is referring to was a direct response to the NATO drill “Joint Viking” that took place next to the Russian border a week earlier.

    Lucas also takes for granted that the alleged submarines in Sweden and Finland were Russian, and that this is yet another example of evil bad Russia. This despite the fact that neither Sweden nor Finland has named any particular foreign country as having been involved in this, instead both have urged caution and stressed that they haven’t actually confirmed any submarines at all.

    In light of this, Lucas calling the Finnish depth charges dropped as being “the first “kinetic” response to Russian aggression in the Baltics since the height of the Cold War” is just comedy gold. It’s not only an example of highly unprofessional and frankly, laughable conjecture, there’s a blatant lie on top of it all. Finland dropped depth charges against a suspected submarine object back in 2004, for instance. Shows just how much of an “expert” Lucas really is…

    There’s so much crap in this “report” that it’s painful to read. Take for example what Lucas thinks is the reason why Russia won’t actually invade everybody for now – it must first recall its “15,000-20,000 forces that are currently involved in operations in and around Ukraine” for without these Russia is crippled. You see, it can’t fight “two wars” at the same time!

    Ok, I’ll stop before I get more grey hair than what is reasonable for a person of my age.

    • Moscow Exile says:

      The man is suffering from some psychiatric disorder.

      • kirill says:

        Indeed. It takes a certain type of scum to spread blood libel that can result in a nuclear war. Since the Pentagon now openly targets journalists, I say that the label “irregular combatant” applies quite well to this lunatic.

    • Fern says:

      The really, really scary part is that Edward Lucas pops up regularly at various UK Parliamentary Committees where he briefs the members of Parliament present as a Russian ‘expert’. The only ‘knowledge’ (I’m using that word in the broadest generic sense) that most of our elected representatives have about Russia comes via Mr Lucas. On one level he’s comedy gold but on another, he’s a dangerous individual for those people with little time or inclination to do their own research.

      • marknesop says:

        Scary, indeed, considering Lucas is a little like a meteorologist in that he can be wrong every day for six months, and people will still listen. I don’t think you were with us in 2013 when I wrote this article about Ed Lucas and his Amazing Completely-Wrong Predictions for Global Alliances, but the only things he ever gets right are dead certs, such as “The sun will rise tomorrow in the east” and “Americans are interested in reading about Bruce Jenner turning into a woman”. What he actually knows about Russia from practical experience, you could put in your eye without blinking.

  25. ThatJ says:

    Medvedev signs food embargo extension until August 2016

    Russian Prime Minister Dmitry Medvedev has signed a decree to extend Russia’s embargo on food imports until August 5, 2016. The details of the extended ‘blacklist’ remained unchanged, he said.

    http://rt.com/business/269644-russia-food-embargo-extension/

    • ucgsblog says:

      $200k for being a professor with no publications? Average is $60k for those without publications. Maybe he’s like that dumbass that got kicked out of the Duma, who gave lectures for tens of thousands of dollars and thought that’s just how the World works.

      • Jen says:

        From what I remember reading about Saakashvili’s time at Tufts on his Wikipedia entry, the cravativore spent less than 12 months in the job as lecturer so he probably didn’t have enough time assembling enough undergrads and postgrads to make up a ghost-writing team that would be happy to write all his publications.for peanut shells
        http://authorskeptics.blogspot.com.au/

        • ucgsblog says:

          AFAIK, ghostwriters aren’t paid peanuts. Maybe it’s different in Academia, but in Hollywood and Silicon Valley, one can make a nice life as a ghostwriter. Then again, if Saak is getting $200k to lecture, (that alone is Kafkaesque,) maybe they cannot afford to pay ghostwriters more than pennies. He’s even screwing up economics in the states! How bad must Ukraine’s economy be for him to complain about being unable to mess it up? Also, thank you for the link Jen! And cravativore, nice! That’s one I haven’t heard before, I like it.

  26. Drutten says:

    A pretty decent write-up on the OSCE conference in Austria last week (in German):
    http://www.neopresse.com/politik/exklusiv-skandal-bei-osze-konferenz-wien/

    Lots of bizarre things reside therein, and a few flashbacks to events last year that should be remembered when assessing things today.

  27. Moscow Exile says:

    Schematic situation report from the Ukrainian Ministry of Defence:

    Notice where many of the miltary units that oppose Ukrainian armed forces are positioned.

    Evidence for this positioning?

    Absolutely none given

    • PaulR says:

      Notice how all the explosion markers are on the Ukrainian side of the front line – only rebels are carrying out shelling, it seems.

    • kirill says:

      These make believe maps have been parroted by the western media since day one of the “ATO”. They were particularly hilarious last year when the first aid convoy arrived from Russia. According to these ludicrous SBU maps which were reproduced with a different colour scheme by the BBC, etc., the convoy went through Kiev regime held land. A total fantasy.

      • Drutten says:

        They are designed to give the impression that Russia is trying to invade once a week in full force but that these invasions are continuously being repelled and contained.

  28. Jeremn says:

    Ah, those degenerate subhumans in Donbass, look, they can even paint. Even their children can paint. (Curt, that was for you!)

  29. Moscow Exile says:

    From Russia Insider:

    Patrick Armstrong’s Russian Federation SITREP № 25

    Compare and contrast.

    Russian army recruitment ad:

    US army recruitment ad:

    • Tim Owen says:

      The “strength to get over yourself.” That seems like a pregnant phrase.

      • Moscow Exile says:

        British Empire army recruitment poster:

        Love it!

        🙂

        • Moscow Exile says:

          Get some in!

          Get yer knees brown!

          • marknesop says:

            I remember the to-do over changing the flag – I was still in school then (1965), and it didn’t mean much to me in the sense that I reacted purely on emotion and not through historical knowledge. However, I must be a natural traditionalist, because I was opposed to the adoption of the current flag.

            • Moscow Exile says:

              It wasn’t immediately recognizable, though, as being Canadian, was it? It was the red ensign with a shield in the middle and Union Flag in the upper flagstaff corner. Don’t remember what was on the shield – a beaver probably.

              I’ll check it out.

              Nope, it was the British Royal coat of arms and some shamrock by the looks of it.

              Should have been a beaver with crossed hockey sticks!

              http://chc2dv-04.weebly.com/uploads/2/9/8/5/29852361/3763476.jpg?377

                • Moscow Exile says:

                  Further to this Canada off-the-topic thread, I forgot to mention that the other day, whilst travelling on the metro, I saw a fast food ad for something that you would never imagine.

                  I couldn’t believe my eyes when I saw it, and I cannot even remember what the dish is called, but some returned Russian emigré to Quebec province or some enterprising Canadian now resident in Mordor is advertising that Quebecois dish that consists of fries covered with gravy or whatever and which Paul of Ottowa, I think, he formerly of the Welsh Marches, mentioned here a couple of weeks ago.

                  I’ll have to give it a try.

                • marknesop says:

                  It’s Poutine, and it’s French-Canadian. But the essential ingredient that makes it Quebecoise Poutine is cheese curds, known as “squeaky cheese” because of the dryness that makes them squeak against your teeth. It’s actually very good, although horrible for you with all that starch and processed into the bargain. I’ve never seen anyone do it well as fast food, so it’s probably junk, but they all do it and people buy it. We have a small struggling Quebec-French restaurant in town called La Belle Patate (the Beautiful Potato) which does lovely poutine, but they have to make it right then and you have to eat it immediately because if it gets soggy with gravy it’s no good. Even simple comfort food has its rules. Bet the fast-food joint uses Mozarella or some white cheese that’s easy to obtain locally – it’s too much to hope for that they will have real cheese curds.

                  I’m sure I remarked before on local versions of fast-food classics, such as the New Zealand and Oz versions of the iconic Big Mac – the McKiwi and the McAussie. This is going back to 1995, mind, but the one was made with peanut butter and the other with sliced beets. I never tried either, so you’ll have to imagine the combination.

                • Moscow Exile says:

                  This stuff:

                  Poutine.

              • marknesop says:

                The shield devices represented the four founding provinces.

      • Moscow Exile says:

        The strength to get one’s leg over is more of a pregnant one, I should imagine.

  30. et Al says:

    Via Antiwar.com

    LRB: Short Cuts – Chase Madar
    http://www.lrb.co.uk/v37/n13/chase-madar/short-cuts

    Harold Koh is the former dean of Yale Law School and an expert in human rights law. As the State Department’s senior lawyer between 2009 and 2013, he provided the Obama administration with the legal basis for assassination carried out by drones. And despite having written academic papers backing a powerful and restrictive War Powers Act, he made the legal case for the Obama administration’s right to make war on Libya without bothering to get congressional approval. Koh, who has now returned to teaching human rights law, is not the only human rights advocate to call for the use of lethal violence. Indeed, the weaponisation of human rights – its doctrines, its institutions and, above all, its grandees – has been going on in the US for more than a decade…

    …Human rights organisations have also been at it. Although it’s the policy of Human Rights Watch not to comment on matters of jus ad bellum – whether or not a war should be waged – in 2011 the UN resolution authorising military force in Libya was warmly endorsed by the outfit’s executive director and top Washington lobbyist. Just days after airstrikes began against the Qaddafi government, a Human Rights Watch researcher called Corinne Dufka called for ‘nothing less than the type of unified and decisive action the UN Security Council has brought to bear in Libya’ to be employed in Côte d’Ivoire in an article published in Foreign Policy. Amnesty International consistently backed US military operations in Afghanistan, which it seemed to view as a Peace Corps programme with soldiers attached…

    ####
    More at the link. This one’s a keeper so everyone should add it to their arsenal of resources and also save a s/t load of comment typing too!

    • kirill says:

      International “human rights” “law” is the BS know as common or case law. It is not based on principles but instead on opportunism. Some case “establishes” the precedent and the grotesque parade marches forth. Note how imperial US uses this “law” as a fig leaf to cover its naked aggression and gross violation of human rights. Extra-territorial assassinations are only justified in the demented minds of Washington elites and those of their idiot fellow travelers. These killers don’t even have to justify the execution of their targets. It is all cast under the umbrella of fighting terrorism. Are you going to take Washington’s word for it? I am not. Washington cheats, lies and discredits itself every day of the week.

    • ThatJ says:

      @kirill

      This is what Washington himself had to say:

      “Observe good faith and justice towards all nations; cultivate peace and harmony with all. Religion and morality enjoin this conduct; and can it be, that good policy does not equally enjoin it – It will be worthy of a free, enlightened, and at no distant period, a great nation, to give to mankind the magnanimous and too novel example of a people always guided by an exalted justice and benevolence. Who can doubt that, in the course of time and things, the fruits of such a plan would richly repay any temporary advantages which might be lost by a steady adherence to it ? Can it be that Providence has not connected the permanent felicity of a nation with its virtue ? The experiment, at least, is recommended by every sentiment which ennobles human nature. Alas! is it rendered impossible by its vices?

      In the execution of such a plan, nothing is more essential than that permanent, inveterate antipathies against particular nations, and passionate attachments for others, should be excluded; and that, in place of them, just and amicable feelings towards all should be cultivated. The nation which indulges towards another a habitual hatred or a habitual fondness is in some degree a slave. It is a slave to its animosity or to its affection, either of which is sufficient to lead it astray from its duty and its interest. Antipathy in one nation against another disposes each more readily to offer insult and injury, to lay hold of slight causes of umbrage, and to be haughty and intractable, when accidental or trifling occasions of dispute occur. Hence, frequent collisions, obstinate, envenomed, and bloody contests. The nation, prompted by ill-will and resentment, sometimes impels to war the government, contrary to the best calculations of policy. The government sometimes participates in the national propensity, and adopts through passion what reason would reject; at other times it makes the animosity of the nation subservient to projects of hostility instigated by pride, ambition, and other sinister and pernicious motives. The peace often, sometimes perhaps the liberty, of nations, has been the victim.”

  31. et Al says:

    Yet again via Antiwar.com

    Neuters: Russia accuses deputy who opposed Crimea seizure of embezzlement
    http://www.reuters.com/article/2015/06/24/us-ukraine-crisis-ponomarev-idUSKBN0P41TR20150624

    …The federal Investigative Committee, which reports to President Vladimir Putin, said a state-funded technological foundation had paid Ilya Ponomaryov $750,000 for lectures, but he had delivered only brief comments…

    …While in the United States, Ponomaryov has campaigned for extending Washington’s sanctions imposed over Moscow’s role in the turmoil in Ukraine to include more Russian state officials…
    ####

    Nice reporting there Neuters. /sarcasm

    • kirill says:

      As if opposing the voice of the majority of Crimeans is a good thing.

      Reuters and the rest of the western news agencies are two bit propaganda operations. This was painfully obvious after the NATO meddling in Yugoslavia during the 1990s. Total, brazen bias without a shred of any balance or attempt at objectivity. Lie, lie and deny 24/7.

    • marknesop says:

      They must have “a case he has described as politically motivated” saved as a macro, so they don’t waste so much time typing. The go-to technique now has become, whenever anyone’s in hot water in Russia, search their background and see if they ever crossed Putin or did something that was unpopular with him, and conflate the two so it looks like he’s being punished for that.

      In fact, Ponomarev’s contrived “lectures” took place in 2010, and the investigators announced they were ready to proceed with a criminal case in the spring of 2013 – a year before the return of Crimea to the Russian Federation and at a time when nobody could have foreseen it would take place.

  32. et Al says:

    Tanjug: EC is not promoting Eastring pipeline
    http://www.tanjug.rs/full-view_en.aspx?izb=185773

    The European Commission (EC) is not promoting the Eastring pipeline project which was first proposed and then withdrawn, the EU Delegation in Serbia released on Tuesday and noted that EC is committed to diversification of Serbia’s gas supply sources, especially via the gas interconnection between Serbia and Bulgaria…
    ###

    The Commission puts dick in zipper, pulls up half way, realizes, undoes zip. What took them so long?

  33. et Al says:

    http://www.politico.com/magazine/story/2015/06/pentagon-air-force-navy-fight-china-119112_Page6.html
    …“Don’t kid yourself,” says one retired general who served in a high-profile infantry command slot during the second Iraq War. “The Air Force and Navy still think we can win wars without an Army. In the end, destroying the enemy’s army is what winning a war is all about. And only the Army can do it.”
    ####

    This is an interesting story for several reasons. First, it simply doesn’t question the US’s right to do what it does, i.e. freedom of access to the US and whomever it sees fit and by extension, denial of access to those it does not like. Secondly, the piece focuses on the interbranch bust up, but barely touched on the undercurrent that is a perpetuation of the US Military Industrial Complex.

    Business means creating new threats either explicitly or implicitly (as quoted above). They don’t care as profits are the bottom line and congressmen are in cahoots as the MIC has a major presence in just about every US state, a deliberate policy since the 1950s. In short, “It’s not about you (China), it’s about me (the MIX porkbarrel). If it wasn’t China, it would be someone other country. Now they are playing the same game with Russia for profits and keeping the EU under a US security wing.

    What this article does tell us is that there are senior voices questioning the whole rationale, but clearly they are still in the minority (and I’ll refer to a video I think Moscow Exile posted a day or two ago from a german press conference with its FM and an very uncomfortable looking military dude). It looks like the US kleptocracy refuses to at least admit publicly a future where the world does not revolve around Washington’s navel.

    • bolasete says:

      in re that general’s comments, i once read some writer’s book of interviews with famous people. he spoke with stalin late in life after the us had exploded the first h-bomb and wondered if that didn’t worry him. stalin answered: bombs don’t win wars; people win wars.

  34. et Al says:

    Oops! This should have come before the previous post:

    Politico: The Pentagon’s Fight Over Fighting China
    http://www.politico.com/magazine/story/2015/06/pentagon-air-force-navy-fight-china-119112_Page5.html

    The Joint Chiefs keep ordering up ambitious new war plans. But their biggest battle might be with each other…

    “…Meanwhile, Rep. Adam Smith, the ranking member of the House Armed Services Committee, and a number of his other colleagues wondered aloud during one hearing how the Pentagon could advocate forging a Pacific partnership with China in one breath, while talking about designing weapons to counter China in the next.”…

    …“Listen, AirSea Battle is about China, and there’s no doubt about that. But it’s also about a lot more,” Princeton’s Aaron Friedberg says. “Just because we’re thinking about ASB, about ways to protect ourselves, doesn’t mean we think we’re going to have a war with China. Our military talks to their military all the time. But our military has to prepare for every option—which is precisely what we should be doing. We have exaggerated concerns about offending the Chinese, but I think at some point we have to be more candid.”…

    …“This isn’t an attempt to deal with escalating threats,” a currently serving Marine Corps colonel argues, “it’s about identifying potential threats so that we can have escalating budget numbers.” This officer described ASB as “a self-licking ice cream cone,” a term used by Pentagon pundits to describe the Pentagon’s strategy of buying weapons that spawn threats that, in turn, lead to the purchase of more weapons—exactly, in a way, what the People’s Daily editorial had warned about…

    …The Army’s initial response to the January 2012 announcement was to meld what it had learned from counterinsurgency operations with its traditional commitment to large units, heavy tanks and massed artillery. The new concept was called “hybrid war.” Ultimately, however, “hybrid war” seemed more like a compromise than a change of direction…
    ####

    ‘Hybrid war’? Now where have we heard that recently? I guess good phrases refuse to die…

  35. yalensis says:

    ON TOPIC! ON TOPIC! ON TOPIC!
    The chief prosecutor of Ivano-Frankivsk was fired for saying bad things about Saakashvili.

    Ihor Nastasiak was unhappy about Saak’s appointment, and criticized him (on his Facebook page) for immediately bringing in all his Gruzian cronies, for example as Chief of Police.

    Ihor is now without a job, and probably wishes he had not been quite so outspoken.

    [yalensis: Is kind of of strange, but I get the impression that WESTERN Ukraine, which started all this Banderite nonsense, is more anti-government now than Kiev.]

    • Pavlo Svolochenko says:

      Historical precedent abounds.

      The leaders of the 1920s West Ukrainian People’s Republic were steeped in Habsburg parliamentary tradition, and were always uneasy about hitching their wagon to the thugs of the demagogue Petliura. Their suspicions about Petliura’s integrity were confirmed when he sold western Ukraine to Piludski.

      (and of course, the insane, degenerate sons of those genteel western Ukrainian politicians ended up founding the UPA and spitting on all the values their fathers had claimed to hold.)

  36. Jen says:

    Decline and Fall of British Civilisation: first Christopher Lee went to the Great Studio in the sky and now it’s Patrick Macnee’s turn.

    Incidentally that still is from the “Never, Never Say Die” episode originally broadcast in 1967. In that episode, John Steed and Emma Peel investigate an odd incident in which a motorist runs down and kills the same man twice and discover that a secret lab in the woods headed by (erm) Dr Frank N Stone (played by Lee, no less) is making robot replicas of politicians with the aim of replacing the real people with the robots and through them control the British nation! Lee also appeared in a later Avengers episode “The Interrogators” from the Tara King series: I have never seen this episode but I believe it was about British army officers being tortured and subjected to psychological manipulation playing on their training and obedience to give up secrets.

    The series and its New Avengers spin-off used to feature a lot of British actors, many of them becoming famous years later through James Bond films. There was also a lot of exchange of actors and script ideas between The Avengers / The New Avengers and Doctor Who over the years: I remember one year (1977) where The New Avengers and Doctor Who featured stories of rats in the sewers growing to enormous size from radioactive stuff being poured down the sink or fed directly to them in experiments and the correspondence was too close to be mere coincidence.

    • bolasete says:

      i read about steed’s demise. i admit to a lifelong crush on mrs peel and 65/66 xkes (alas, i lived on a triumph budget) that right after reading about macnee i looked into dvds of the peel episodes and was about to part with the $45 when i scrolled down to buyers’ comments which claimed they were very bad quality! anyone know where my pence might purchase a passable product?
      (apology to ol’ yal’ for being OFF TOPIC! but i am on topic in this immediate case.)

      • marknesop says:

        I share your crush on the delicious Diana Rigg, who remained a looker well into her 60’s. Her daughter, Rachael Stirling, is a bit of all right as well, although not a patch on her Mum.

        Here’s a box set that got extremely good reviews – may not be viewable outside Europe, though, so depends on where you live; something about the number of scanning lines, I think, I’ve run into that before. There are some linked options, though, so there is no shortage of alternatives.

        • bolasete says:

          i once had the true pleasure of watching her on stage doing shakespeare. she’s a very good actress but when i read she is/was in game of thrones my heart sank. mrs peel is far to sophisticated for such tripe!

          • bolasete says:

            i sent my reply afore your full comment displayed. thanx. i’ll check it out. i’ve had mixed results buying uk cds and getting them here (us frozen tundra country).

          • Pavlo Svolochenko says:

            Everybody in the Game of Thrones cast is too sophisticated for it – including the extras.

            The only actor who isn’t too sophisticated for Game of Thrones is Seth MacFarlane.

            • Jen says:

              These people are not too sophisticated for Game of Thrones and the show’s producers should consider casting them for the next season when the decade-long winter starts:

              • Pavlo Svolochenko says:

                Hmmm, no.

                The joy of watching them die would be cancelled out by the knowledge that it was only pretense.

          • Cortes says:

            Her Shakespearean talents can also be savoured in the movie “Theatre of Blood”, a vehicle for the peerless Vincent Price

        • Jen says:

          @ Mark, Bolasete: You’ll be interested in these bizarre little home movies “Diadems” and “Mini Killers” that Diana Rigg made in Germany and Spain in the late 1960s, in both of which she plays a nameless Emma Peel spy (the films have no dialogue). In the latter of these films, she busts a heroin shipment scam that uses baby dolls that squirt poison while on holidays. Why she made these films, no-one has any idea since she never talks about them and might have even forgotten them entirely.
          http://dangerousminds.net/comments/diana_rigg_stars_in_bizarre_german_stag_films_for_avengers_fetishists

  37. bolasete says:

    i tend to be a ‘big picture’ type; thus, i’ll try to make this relevant. i run thru zerohege.com each day and the following quote will work here:

    ” Pointless wars costing millions of innocent lives, poisoned food, air and water, demolished resources, manipulated economies run by elitist bankers who nonchalantly lend money with conditions for “interest”, corporate profiteering at any cost to humanity, a medical system built on sickness instead of health, media mindmush poisoning children and adults alike, draconian clampdowns for any reason, and on and on.
    Why is this not obvious to people that something is seriously wrong, and clearly intended to be just the way it is? Do they really think it’s gonna iron itself out, especially with clearly psychopathic power mad corrupt maniacs in charge?”

    this is typical for the site, yet the solution is almost always libertarian capitalism. while to me socialism is the obvious choice. unfettered capitalism led to what we have today. using self-interest in running a business always leads, if possible, to self-interest in controlling the political process. laws and regulations in the us came after catastrophes and depressions. the ignorance of political economy and history always stupefies me. thus to me the us and the west in general are hopeless for political change. maybe when the survivors are picking through the wreckage they might do better.
    so, to the donbass and russia. putin’s social state seems a variety of social democracy and history has shown it’s futile to rely on the good intentions of those with power. i suspect that circumstances will push putin to a purge. and then in donetsk they seem to have strong socialist inclinations and certainly aren’t fighting to save ‘their’ oligarchs. in a battle one simply tries to kill the enemy and preserve one’s own life. but before and after you can’t avoid thinking about what-for your fighting and what you hope to achieve and that, i think, must be reflected in your propaganda. putin keeps his cards close to his vest but at some point the rooskies need to show their conceptulization of the future and that starts and ends with people not pipelines.
    out of an embarrassingly large number of economics books i’ve read the only one i ever recommend is joan robinson’s freedom and necessity: 123 pages of text, no formulas. it’s about political economy, ie; it’s about people and how they want to organize their societies. (exposing my classical education.)

    • marknesop says:

      The one that jumped out at me was the quote about a medical system built on sickness instead of health. I read a quote in a novel – Peter James’ “Faith” – which intrigued me; although it was a novel, we usually still look for reality in the story, or it isn’t entertaining or engaging. Faith, the iconically beautiful (through repeated surgeries by her brilliant but controlling-psycho husband, Ross Ransome) wife, eventually seeks out a lover because her husband is such a hopeless prick, and takes up with another doctor who is the roughhewn type more into traditional medicine and homeopathic research. Anyway, he says (I’ve forgotten the character’s name, it’s a long time since I read it, but it’s not important) that modern medicine is all about treating your symptoms just enough to give you reliable relief, and studiously avoids any attempt to cure your condition. Why would doctors do that? If they give you relief, you will be a buyer of medications for as long as you live. It reminded me of those apocryphal legends of tinkerers who had invented a carburetor that got 80+ miles to the gallon (back when jetted carburetors such as the famed Holley double-pumper were the industry elite), and the designs were immediately bought up by Shell or Esso or Irving, and shelved forever, so as to keep people dependent on gasoline within a certain cost bracket and level of consumption. At around the time when I was listening wide-eyed to that legend, believing every word, gasoline sold for around 60 cents a gallon for regular. But the point is that it was believable, because even a hick country boy like me could see that corporations and institutions strove for the maximum degree of control over the consumer, and one of the best ways to do that was to increase his or her predictability where spending was concerned.

      The book is pure escapism, but quite compelling and well-written – I recommend it. The crazy jealous husband, a la “Sleeping With the Enemy”, has a lot of mileage in it.

      • Cortes says:

        The introduction of possibly deliberate “errors ” in certain types of work done on behalf of public bodies by private sector professionals with a view to ensuring remedial work down the line could never happen, could it?

      • Moscow Exile says:

        I once read that according to the traditional Chinese system, you paid your doctor as long as you were in good health; as soon as you became ill, the payments stopped.

        Holistic approach, I think. The doctor treated the “whole person” and didn’t just call around when the patient was ill.

        • yalensis says:

          Sorry dude, but “holistic” medicine is unscientific scam.

          Most of Chinese medicine is B.S. too, although not all of it. A lot of the treatments like herbal medicines and acupunctures, were developed over the centuries and even millenia, and were selected because they gave practical (albeit weak) results. Their effectiveness is the result of empirical experience, not any underlying scientific basis. The philosophy underlying a lot of “traditional” medicine is bogus; for example, belief in “humours” and “chi” and stuff like that.

          Modern (Western) scientific medicine is way better and more effective because it is based on actual science, and how the human body actually works, also taking into account invisible things like bacteria and viruses. What is wrong with western medicine is NOT the underlying science, or the testing methodology (double-blind tests, etc.), but with the capitalist system itself. (The things people mentioned about effective treatments being shelved due to profit concerns, etc.)

          Here is one example: In the U.S. there is a terrible epidemic of Lyme Disease. Especially in the Northeast. Which is a horrible, debilitating disease, that leads to a lifetime of complications. Everybody I know, knows somebody who has it, including children. Because they went out in the woods and got bitten by a deer tick.

          The thing is, there is an effective vaccine against this disease. The vaccine was first developed for dogs, and then a human version was created.
          Several thousands of people were successfully vaccinated against it, I believe in the early 2000’s. Then the company stopped making the vaccine, because it wasn’t economically profitable. At this point, the federal or state government should have stepped in, with a public health vaccination campaign, and subsidized the making of the vaccine, like the do with flu vaccine. But they didn’t. They would rather that people just get the disease, I suppose.

          But this is a failure of the political system, not of science. Traditional or Chinese medicine would not have been able to even come up with something like the vaccine. They WOULD have been able to come up with something like poultices to treat the rash, but that’s about it.

          • marknesop says:

            Yes, I know someone with Lyme disease – he got it while playing a dissident partisan in a military exercise, which involved skulking about in the woods in Nova Scotia. Because he is a government employee, he’ll be taken care of, but he retired around a year ago because he was unable to go on working, and I imagine if he had his choice he would have preferred to go on working and never to have gotten the disease. It has a wide variety of manifestations, but none are comfortable. Nice guy, everyone liked him, it’s a real shame. I don’t think it’s all that common here, though; there was a real scare a few years ago in Ontario, and now most people are well aware of the danger.

            Point taken, though – engineered medicine is indeed very effective. But what resonated with me was the fictional doctor’s inference that modern medicine, while it was capable of actually eradicating many conditions, deliberately focuses on managing the symptoms because that’s where all the money is.

          • Moscow Exile says:

            Yes, the British Medical Association published a report last year which slammed “alternative medicine”, most especially homeopathy, and quite rightly so, in my opinion. And this was no quickie report: the BMA had spent years in preparing it. However, in the same report it was stated that there was evidence that acupuncture proved effective for the treatment of certain disorders. How this was so, the BMA could not explain, but on the evidence that they had gathred as regards acupunctre, the association said it worked.

            • yalensis says:

              From what I understand, acupuncture is marginally more effective than placebo for certain conditions, such as headaches. It is not fully understood the mechanism by which it works, but the guess is that the rhythmic stimulation of nerve endings can set off counter-currents in the synapses of the nervous system. Since the proximal cause of a headache is the vibration of nerve endings in the trigeminal system of the facial muscles.

              Or something like that…..

              • marknesop says:

                Pirates supposedly wore earrings to improve their eyesight – the acupuncture point for eyesight is supposedly in the earlobe. However, I cannot recall any of the women I ever knew – all of whom had pierced ears at some point in their lives – saying that their eyesight had suddenly gone into overdrive.

          • Drutten says:

            It’s a shame that politics stopped it. The US human vaccine was rather successful against the B. burgdorferi-type lyme disease if I’m not mistaken.

            In Europe we have other kinds of lyme disease apart from the B. burgdorferi one – likewise with ticks as the chief vector but with different pathogens (other Borrelia species) being responsible, so the US vaccine wasn’t as successful here. Now there’s word of a “proper” european multi-vaccine in the works, so hopefully politics don’t get in the way of that here.

            Here in Sweden (and in Russia!), tick-borne encephalitis (TBE) is a far, far greater problem than lyme disease though, and vaccines against TBE are available in all affected geographical regions. “Vaccination buses” tour the countryside during the spring and summer months where I live, and one shot costs about 40 bucks. If you’re an outdoors person it’s recommended to get two shots with a few months in between, and then you’ll be fine with an “update” shot once every three-four years after that. I don’t know why it has to be like that, but I suppose there is a immunological reason for it.

            • Jen says:

              With most vaccines, the schedule starts in early childhood or young adulthood with the first two or three shots spread several months or a few years apart and then for years afterwards or the rest of your life you get booster injections every so often (for example, tetanus boosters every 5 years or every 10 years).

              There is always the risk that for some children or young adults, the body’s immunological response might be either too weak or too reactive which might be why, when you first go onto a vaccination schedule, you take the first few shots months apart rather than all at once. When you get a shot, you not only receive the vaccine itself, you also receive the compounds that are used to preserve it during storage and transport, and sometimes people can have a reaction to the compounds. Most vaccines these days are not supposed to use thimerosal or any mercury-based compounds as the preservative.

              There is the possibility that the current vaccination schedule recommended for children might be out of date. Tetanus is very rare these days when most people live in cities and have very little direct contact with horses. The vaccination schedule for tetanus suits a period when most people had direct contact with horses and activities associated with the animals (cleaning their stables, cleaning the roads after peak hour horse traffic in cities in the late 1800s) as horses harbour the tetanus bacillus.

              • kat kan says:

                All manure does.

                WHO in Africa is vaccinating young women, as the immunity carries over to the newborn, lasting a month or two. This saves hundreds of babies each year, who are born in unhygienic village conditions. Left lying around on dirt floors (or in gardens while the mother works them) apparently a lot used to get tetanus through the umbilical cord lesion. Agenda 21 CTers believe this is a drug to cause miscarriage (in subsequent pregnancies, somehow), as a method of eugenics.

                • yalensis says:

                  Well, the way to prove or debunk this accusation would be to conduct a statistical study of the vaccine as correlated to subsequent miscarriages.
                  People should not make these accusations against public health officials, unless they can back them up.

                • Jen says:

                  It seems that the people who made claims last year about tetanus vaccinations causing sterility in women in Kenya last year might have an axe to grind: the accusations came from Roman Catholic bishops and were supported by doctors at a Catholic-run medical centre in Nairobi.
                  http://www.snopes.com/medical/disease/tetanus.asp

      • Jen says:

        A psychiatric parallel with the situation described in the Peter James novel “Faith” is psychoanalysis where the psychoanalyst spends years treating patients and both doctor and patient develop a bond as part of the treatment. This would obviously lead to situations where the doctor starts milking his/her patients as ready and stable sources of income, and both doctor and patient become co-dependent. Anyone who saw that Metallica documentary “Some Kind of Monster” would have seen something of that type of relationship developing in the film: late in the film, James Hetfield and company decide they don’t need their shrink anymore and the doctor is upset when they tell him.

        It’s possible that pharmaceutical firms have seized on this co-dependency relationship model as a way of pressuring doctors to push more people onto medications that make people dependent on them and provide the firms with a captive market. The doctor simply becomes an unpaid sales representative for the company.

        • yalensis says:

          The doctor-pharmaceutical relationship is definitely one of the negative factors in Western medicine, along with the profit motive.

          Another negative factor, which I should have mentioned in my above comment (because I don’t want to come off as Panglossian “Western medicine is absolutely perfect!”) is the factor of designing good test protocols.

          This problem is discussed in David Hand’s book, which I keep mentioning (“The Improbability Principle”), because it is so damn good.
          Western medicine is actually very good at doing the math, calculating the probabilities, etc. However, when it comes to designing a good human experiment, there are many pitfalls, the gold standard of the perfect double-blind is rarely met, and the numbers can get skewed in many different directions. (Hand calls this “the probability lever”). This happens when studies are not designed properly; or when people drop out of the studies midstream; or when there is not a proper control; etc etc.). There could also be bias on the part of the testers, or even a “clever Hans” type of effect.
          This creates a situation with unhandled variables, with resulting margin of error not what it is supposed to be. As a result, a drug could be put out on the market which is either (1) ineffective, or (2) unsafe, or (3) both.

          • kat kan says:

            Double blind with placebos is not necessary, really. If the effect is so small as to be easily confused with placebo effect, that drug is a waste of time and money making or taking. Think statins. Majority of drugs today should change something which is easily measurable, in fact often get prescribed on the basis of such measurements.

            Test results can be gamed, of course. Especially to prove negatives. Eg it is usual to check no more people died taking the drug than taking the placebo. Such a test is then used to “test the efficacy of vitamins” which are then denounced as worthless because they didn’t save any lives. Why not denounce aspirin for not healing broken legs?

            Anyway, “diagnose-yourself” herb pills with unknown quantities of single active ingredients probably only help the manufacturer’s bank account. A proper mixture of actual herbs prescribed by a Chinese herbalist probably does work, for a wide variety of ailments, even if yin and yang don’t “exist”. Their protocols might be different, but they’ve tested those things on a few billion people over a few thousand years..

            • yalensis says:

              Dear Katkan:
              Don’t get me wrong, I am not knocking herbal medicines, I take a few of those myself.
              I don’t discount practical experience, and the fact that humans spent tens of thousands of years trying out different plants and herbs, to see what worked.

              We’re still in the same basic situation, the way things are now, basically, you just have to test stuff on yourself.
              I mean, what else can you do?

              The only thing is, I avoid concoctions with lots of ingredients. I would rather take a simple herb with a single action ingredient; that way, I have a better chance of guessing what is actually working on me. For example, if I take a concoction of molecules X+Y+Z, and it makes me feel better, then how do I know what’s really working? Maybe it’s just molecule X that my body needs. Or maybe it’s Y. I don’t like the fact that they mix everything together, that makes it harder to identify what works and what doesn’t. Too many variables!

        • marknesop says:

          In fact, something very like that happens – an elderly patient who has had repeated surgeries in an attempt to keep her youthful beauty has become angry with her most recent nose job and is threatening to sue if Dr. Ransome (Faith’s husband) does not get it right, so he deliberately introduces a virulent bacteria by breaking into the septum with a dirty chisel, so as to give her an infection he knows will kill her. But she was quite a lucrative cash cow prior to that, and having him as a personal surgeon was quite a badge of status among her social set.

  38. Drutten says:

    Today is the “Day of the Crimean Tatar Flag” in the Republic of Crimea, with large celebrations in Simferopol and Bakhchisaray tonight.

  39. Moscow Exile says:

    From Russia Insider this linked Consortium News article:

    The Nitwits Are in Charge

    following which article, this (slightly abbreviated and edited by ME) reader’s comment may be of interest to our Putin-has-thrown-Novorossia-under-the-bus contributor:

    We are … entangled in World War III, which has been ‘on’ since 1991, after Gorbachev made his sane and sensible attempt to break off Cold War I, when he recognized that maintaining empire was too expensive, costing too much both economically and in animosity, and so dissolved the Soviet Empire, looking to the West to recognize the value of a new, more neighbourly, economically interactive world order, with the money that had been going to maintain arms going to the consumer economy.

    The West assigned Gorbachev’s idealism to ‘weakness’ and defined his overtures ‘capitulation’. The West declared ‘victory’ and when Russia opened itself to western integration, invaded; grabbing for spoils, for control where it could be taken; and financing grabs for control, that Western owners could control through controlling the new oligarch owners; or through majority share ownership, or through financial foreclosings. Instead of the ex-soviet economies being helped up, they were destroyed completely.

    This was the beginning of what is now called “Hybrid Warfare”. Next came installing and tailoring governments in ex-soviet satellites, and moving the borders that had been negotiated to remain static, towards Russia: NATO expansion, the whole a new kind of economic and political ‘blitzkrieg’, of a slower order, but still depending on the attacked parties’ confusions and disorders making them unable to meet the focused assault.

    WWIII has followed the traditional “J” pattern, with Russia falling back and going down, then beginning to get a grip on the assault situation, and becoming able to meet it. Putin was instrumental in the Russian recovery of balance, and he, with Lavrov, and others directing the present Russian ‘line’ seem to have a developed a feel for Hybrid Warfare and developed effective defensive techniques. They stopped the rapacious capturings of Russian assets; they developed techniques to meet the Western initiated protest ‘revoutions’.

    Today Russia has stopped the assault and is holding its lines against the aggressors. It is not counter-attacking, it is maintaining its ex-soviet defined ideals and principals, to remain a new Russia, to avoid empire, to recognize and work with others as ‘partners’, to help where it can, but not dominate, to respect others’ sovereignties. This has been up-hill because Russia’s neighbours were all abused under the Soviet Empire and are all wary, but Russia appears to have stayed its course, refusing to make any moves towards re-asserting any authority outside its own borders.

    It is for this, and through this, that Russia is ‘winning’ today. Those elements of the West who have been warring have been pushing to ‘force’ Russia to show aggression. They have been presuming it and they have been declaring it. Russia has responded with self-control and restraint. [My emphasis – ME] The nations around Russia are beginning to believe the new Russia really is a new Russia, and that the New Russia does respect others and does not want to dominate or build, or rebuild, an empire, and the sane and rational of the European ‘West’ are recognizing this as well.

    The Western Aggressors are becoming less successful and meeting a kind of resistance they were not prepared for. They have been becoming more shrill, more strident, more hysterical. They have become more nakedly aggressive. They have been putting their foot in it again and again. They have been losing control and are continuing to lose it. Western aggressors created the Ukraine situation; their revoution and the crew they put into power threw the Crimea into Russia’s arms, if you recall: Russia’s ‘green men’ did nothing but peace-keep there. The Ukrainian ‘anti-terrorist’ operations, against civilians, to drive them into emigration, created a civil war, which the West backed ‘government’ has lost twice, and had to capitulate so as to stop their losses.

    The Hybrid-Warfare ‘Sanctions-Front’ that the West then opened up blew up in its face with a back-fire. The cutting off (or threat to do so) of SWIFT services has caused a Russian-Chinese, – Indian, -Brazilian alternative to bloom, which all the Western Warmongers’ allies had to join in order to assure their economic futures, since all trade with the nations the WarMongers have pushed to hedge against economic war activities. Again and again the Western Warmongers, trying to be aggressive, have put their foot in it and then slipped and fallen on their faces, while Russia has stood its ground peacefully, refusing to be baited.

    This is not funny? I’ve been laughing for months, even while feeling sorry for the victims of the Western Warmongers, who do not deserve to be toyed with as the Warmongers, including the Friedmans and WaPos and NYT-wits are toying with them.

    • yalensis says:

      I agree with the commenter who said that Thomas Friedman should be tried as a war criminal.

      • marknesop says:

        Thomas Friedman should be tried as a mendacious idiot, but that is unfortunately not a crime. Here he is in a rare moment of candor, acknowledging that he was all wrong about the Iraq War. He qualifies this, of course, by blaming the shortcomings of others in whom he had faith and trust, but still he admits the whole thing was a farce from the start, all about venal politics. What did that teach him? Fuck all, because he was back preaching the same doctrine in no time as soon as another battle front opened up.

    • marknesop says:

      I agree wholeheartedly, and wish I had said it myself. Laughing at the west’s ignominious pratfalls does not mean I wish its destruction or collapse – I live here, and I like it and am not interested in seeing drastic changes for the worse. I simply wish the west to lose this battle for domination of Russia, because it is an underhanded and vicious mission in which it does not deserve to succeed. Moreover, nobody has convinced me it is in any way necessary to crush Russia and break its will in order for the west to prosper and in fact the reverse is true – the world was considerably more prosperous in 2013 before the USA made its move. Russia was wholly prepared to be a responsible world citizen and to trade in peace for mutual benefit, and the whole threat-to-Europe bullshit is a complete hoax devised to stir the people up and get them to throw their shoulders to the wheel of war for America’s benefit.

  40. Moscow Exile says:

    June 26, 2015
    Yevgeny Primakov has died this day.

    • Moscow Exile says:

      President Putin sends condolences over Yevgeny Primakov’s death

      What a crying shame that he did not become president instead of that drunken bastard criminal Yeltsin!

      • Moscow Exile says:

        Primakov on the Crimea spoken during an interview in July, 2013, with RBTH :

        Many think that Crimea was in our pocket from the very beginning. That is incorrect; we had no part in starting the Ukrainian crisis.

        During the crisis, a goal was set: Return Crimea to Russia. In order to do this, there were two prerequisites. Firstly, the Crimean people had to express their will for such a thing to happen. Events were already in motion that indicated that the Ukrainian authorities might try to hinder the will of the Crimean people through force. In light of such circumstances, President Putin requested permission to send in troops.

        See: Yevgeny Primakov on Ukraine

        • marknesop says:

          “Events were already in motion that indicated that the Ukrainian authorities might try to hinder the will of the Crimean people through force”.

          As they certainly would have done, and it is clear that only the certainty of armed resistance deterred them.

      • Ali Cat says:

        Wasnt he the one who thought about the euroasian union, i read somewhere about the Primakov Doctrine, but cant find the link.

        • Moscow Exile says:

          Lavrov predicts historians may coin new term: the Primakov Doctrine

          “The moment he took over the Russian Foreign Ministry heralded a dramatic turn of Russia’s foreign policy. Russia left the path our Western partners had tried to make it follow after the breakup of the Soviet Union and embarked on a track of its own”, Lavrov said.

          • Moscow Exile says:

            Well (surprise, surprise!), according to Ariel Cohen, however, the Eurasian Union is all part of the Evil One’s dastardly plan for the revival of the USSR:

            Russia’s Eurasian Union Could Endanger The Neighborhood And US Interests – Analysis

            And strike me pink! In the above-linked “analysis” there’s that well known and oft repeated mistranslation again:

            Vladimir Putin famously said in 2005 that the collapse of the Soviet Union was the greatest geopolitical catastrophe of the 20th century and a genuine tragedy for the Russian people.

            I repeat again:

            Putin did not say that “the collapse of the Soviet Union was the greatest geopolitical catastrophe of the 20th century”: that is a Western propaganda meme that frequently appears in comments made by Westerners.

            What Putin said on April 5th 2001 to the Russian Federal Assembly (the upper house of the bicameral Russian legislature) during a televised speech is almost always quoted out of context by Western commentators, their intention, no doubt, being to suggest that Putin regrets the fall of the USSR.

            A translation into English of what Putin actually said at that time as regards the collapse of the Soviet Union would be that said collapse was “a major geopolitical catastrophe of the century”.

            Putin then continued, saying that what befell former Soviet citizens after the collapse of the Soviet Union was a “tragedy”.

            Here is what Putin actually said on April 5th 2001:

            Прежде всего следует признать, что крушение Советского Союза было крупнейшей геополитической катастрофой века. Для российского же народа оно стало настоящей драмой. Десятки миллионов наших сограждан и соотечественников оказались за пределами российской территории. Эпидемия распада к тому же перекинулась на саму Россию.

            [Above all, we should acknowledge that the collapse of the Soviet Union was a major geopolitical disaster of the century. As for the Russian nation, it became a genuine tragedy. Tens of millions of our co-citizens and compatriots found themselves outside Russian territory. Moreover, the epidemic of disintegration spread to Russia itself.]

            He then went on to say:

            Накопления граждан были обесценены, старые идеалы разрушены, многие учреждения распущены или реформировались на скорую руку. Целостность страны оказалась нарушена террористической интервенцией и последовавшей хасавюртовской капитуляцией. Олигархические группировки, обладая неограниченным контролем над информационными потоками, обслуживали исключительно собственные корпоративные интересы. Массовая бедность стала восприниматься как норма. И все это происходило на фоне тяжелейшего экономического спада, нестабильных финансов, паралича социальной сферы.

            Многие тогда думали, многим тогда казалось, что наша молодая демократия является не продолжением российской государственности, а ее окончательным крахом, является затянувшейся агонией советской системы.

            Те, кто так думал – ошиблись. Именно в этот период в России происходили крайне значимые события. В нашем обществе вырабатывалась не только энергия самосохранения, но и воля к новой свободной жизни.

            [Individual savings depreciated; old ideals were destroyed; many institutions were disbanded or reformed in a slapdash fashion. Terrorist intervention and the Khasavyurt capitulation that followed damaged the country’s integrity. Oligarchic groups — possessing absolute control over information channels — served exclusively their own corporate interests. Mass poverty began to be seen as the norm. And all this was happening against the backdrop of a dramatic economic downturn, unstable finances, and the paralysis of the social sphere.

            Many thought, or seemed to think at the time, that our young democracy was not a continuation of Russian statehood, but its ultimate collapse, the prolonged agony of the Soviet system.

            But those who thought that were mistaken, for that was precisely the period when significant developments were taking place in Russia. Our society was generating not only the energy of self-preservation, but also the will for a new and free life.]

            For the full speech see: Послания Федеральному Собранию

            Official Kremlin translation: Addresses to the Federal Assembly

  41. Jeremn says:

    Ukraine look sto be rejected by Europe, according to a poll funded by USAID:

    http://iwp.org.ua/eng/public/1570.html

    Well, only 31% thought that Ukraine was part of Europe.

    (Perhaps, once they have jkilled all the Mongols, this will increase to 32%?)

  42. yalensis says:

    On the fuel front:
    Now that the end of June is approaching, Ukraine is starting to think about the next heating season, and how they would like to continue getting subsidized gas from Russia.

    On 30 June is planned a 3-way meeting meeting reps of Ukraine, Russia, and EU, in Vienna.
    Vladimir Demchishin, Minister of Energy for Ukraine, stated that he hopes to sign a packet with same deal as last year, which includes a discount on gas price. However, he has not yet formally requested the discounted price.

    The discount consists of 100 dollars off for each 1000 cubic meters of gas.

    However, on Wednesday, Russian Prez Putin hinted, that Russia cannot afford to continue subsidizing Ukraine with such a generous discount. He indicated that Ukraine might be forced to pay the same price (without discount) as Poland. This is related to the fluctuations of prices on the world market.

  43. yalensis says:

    In European news:
    There is some personal friction between Tusk (Poland) and Tsipras (Greece).
    At the EU summit, Tusk played the role of schoolyard bully. He pushed Tsipras around and then told him:
    “The game is over.”

    Tsipras responded thusly: “In Greece there are 1.5 million unemployed, 3 million people living in poverty, thousands of families who have no income, besides the pensions of the grandfathers and grandmothers. THIS IS NOT A GAME.”

    Tsipras added: “One must never underestimate, what people are capable of doing, when they feel themselves to be humiliated.”

    Meanwhile, Greece is getting NOTHING from their so-called friends in the EU. The leaders of all the other countries just keep repeating that Greece must introduce “reforms” and austerity, and so on. They will not be satisfied until Greece is left a lifeless corpse on the world stage.

    • marknesop says:

      It’s true, though, as an RI piece by Alex Mercouris pointed out, that Greece must stop negotiating by playing Russia off against the EU. That turned out to be a disaster for Yanukovych, and it will for Tsipras as well if he keeps it up.

      • yalensis says:

        Dear Mark:
        I posted my clown video, and you responded to it with political commentary.
        This proves that I dominated the conversation from the beginning.
        I had you from “hello”.
        I completely controlled the tone and direction of the clown thread.
        The rest of you are just munchkins to my genius. You’re out of your league.
        I am so rich that I could buy and sell you at least 5 times over.
        My first ex-wife (can’t remember her name) was a glamorous witch. I think her name was Endora. She was beautiful, but she was a ball-buster.
        That was why I had to trade her in for my second, trophy wife, who is only 10 years old.
        I had to choose between brains and cuteness, and I chose cuteness.
        Well, it’s been nice knowing you mental pygmies.
        So long, I’m off to cut another big huge deal, after I snort some more cocaine!
        Yeah, Guido is waiting for me on the corner…

        • marknesop says:

          You have good taste – Agnes Moorehead actually was a great beauty in her youth. The Endora fright wig and the odd plucked eyebrows gave her such an exotic look that I was surprised to learn she came from entirely UK stock, although she was an American. I would have been prepared to swear she descended from something East European.

          Don’t forget to foward a line drawing of yourself, looking regal rather than insane, coupled with a suitably grandiose phrase like “Creeping Smackdown…You have just been my bitch”. If you are worried about being identified, make the drawing so it doesn’t even look like you, so that the drawing is sort of thoughtful-looking and reflects introspection rather than cackling, stuck-on-yourself craziness.

          • yalensis says:

            Never forget that I look 15 years younger than my actual age! (Even with the devil horns.)

          • Jen says:

            I saw an old episode of “The Wild, Wild West” on Youtube a year ago and Agnes Moorehead played the main villain. She looked the same as she did as Endora on “Bewitched” and put in an enormously campy performance; the highlight was when she worked out with small dumb-bells shaped like hearts. She apparently won an Emmy for that role.

            Moorehead is also famous for the small role she had in Orson Welles’ “Citizen Kane”. Unfortunately her judgement in choosing film roles was not always impeccable; she also appeared in that notorious Genghis Khan film (with John Wayne as the Mad Mongol and Susan Hayward as his bride) that was made downwind of atomic testing in Nevada. Like Wayne, Hayward and most of the cast, Moorehead died from cancer.

  44. Moscow Exile says:

    Again, for the benefit of the allegedly knowledgable Doolittle, one of those settlements in Russia that cannot be classified as a city, there being only two cities in that benighted cultural wilderness – Samara:

    The river is the Volga. Note how the vastness of Russia makes the city, just visible on the skyline, look like a spot on a giant’s arse.

    I should imagine the prairie states of Canada look similar, apart from the river.

    Before I set off for Russia from Germany, a former German uninvited guest here (1941-1945) once exclaimed to me that I should go mad in Russia because “it’s all sky and empty”.

    I know what he meant – but it’s not empty.

    More shots of the village Samara:

    Looking West ‘cross the Mighty Volga:

    Looking in the otherr direction towards the village:

    The old village centre:

    The village fish market:

    • marknesop says:

      Well, to be fair, of course Curt meant that if another nation – presumably the indispensable one – were to nuke Moscow and St Petersburg, there would be such a humanitarian catastrophe and tremendous loss of life that Russia would reconsider its position. That’s probably accurate. However, if an enemy were to nuke Toronto and Montreal, Canada would have lost a huge chunk of its population. New York and Houston, ditto for the United States – I can’t imagine that would be just the incentive that fired ’em up and made them feel like digging in for a long fight. I can’t think of any developed country that could tolerate the loss by destruction of two of its largest cities, and it goes for the USA as well.

      It’s interesting, though, that destroying cities and killing huge numbers of non-combatants has evolved to the go-to leverage.When you consider your enemy to be made up of brutes and savages who are of no value to the world, such calculations are simple. It is a trade-off, though, because the United States is becoming viewed steadily as more of a dangerous loose cannon itself by the nuclear countries of the world. Curt’s is just the attitude to cement that view. His blustering and self-aggrandizement is the polar opposite of soft power. He would fit right into the current American government model.

      We met a lovely woman from Samara a couple of years ago, on a cruise out of Miami. She was a photographer, specializing in wedding packages, and she very much liked Miami and was hoping to relocate there for maybe a few years. This is her; well, her page, she is obviously not in any of the photographs herself. She and Sveta still correspond on Facebook, although I have no time for that stuff. She said she had a son who was around 17, but she only looked early-thirties herself, with the eye-catching face and figure so many Slavic women have.

      • Moscow Exile says:

        One of actress Helen Mirren’s distant Russian kinfolk, I see.

        Samara was often in the news a few years ago because of its dynamic mayor, whose policies had led to an economic boom in the city and its environs.

        One of the underground railway stations in Samara.

        Samara beach. (The tide must have gone out! 🙂 )

        Bit chilly in winter, though.

      • Jen says:

        The difference though is that if the US took out Moscow and St Petersburg, Russia would have sufficient industrial capacity in the Volga river region to recover. The centre of politics would shift east to the Volga and any one of the cities on the river would become a new capital. People would move east and south through the country, and while Russia would need at least 20 – 30 years to recover, it would still remain one country.

        On the other hand, if Russia blasted New York City and Los Angeles, the US might not recover so well if the main economic drivers are Wall Street and Hollywood, and all the other industries dependent on them. Both NY and LA have sizable metropolitan areas and there are other large cities nearby so possibly up to 100 million people could be affected. Also with NY and LA on opposite sides of the country, the radiation clouds that would develop effectively lock in the rest of the population with nowhere to go except north to Canada or south to Mexico and the Caribbean.

        • marknesop says:

          Good point. Russia would have lost a tremendous proportion of its population, though, where the USA would be less affected.

        • kat kan says:

          LA would sow radio active salt all over California, which happens to grow some 40% of all America’s food. Though they might have to find substitutes for that sooner than the Bomb, as they’ve used up all the water.

          Nice looking country, USA, but they have no chermozem.

  45. dany8538 says:

    I am now sure Ukraine will default. Once Goldman Sachs says so, it practically becomes reality 🙂
    http://russia-insider.com/en/politics/goldman-sachs-ukraine-will-default-july/ri8318

    • Moscow Exile says:

      She’s said so as well – the Chicago Banderite financial criminal who passes for finance minister:

      Ukraine could default in July – finance minister

      What did Obama recently say about a certain country having its economy “in tatters”…?

      • marknesop says:

        But everyone speaks as if default were a measurable low-water mark from which recovery could begin. If Ukraine defaults on its debt it is because it is stony broke and has no money, and the sun coming up next morning will rise on a country which must still subsist on handouts from the international community. It has no appreciable retrenching position once it owns itself a bad debtor unable to repay its creditors, because its biggest market was Russia and it blew that off with its big Nazi mouth. Commerce as such is effectively dead, or exists on such a tragic sublevel that it is of no significance to the economy as a whole, and “default” is just another marker on a descent into hell.

        If the west meant to have it, it had to know it was going to be expensive, and I still marvel at the naivete of the planners who thought Russia was going to finance Ukraine’s transition to a European country.

        • kat kan says:

          Actually they have a big wheat harvest coming in soon, half of which they can afford to sell. Enough for a bit of ready cash. They’ll probably sell all of it then beg for money to buy some back later, when the people have no bred again. Anyone with any sense will start to grow buckwheat NOW on any pare bit of ground they can find — it grows easily with not much care, and should be ready to harvest before first frost. A house yard full can keep 2 people alive over winter..

    • marknesop says:

      One of the commenters pointed out, though, that a potential default depends entirely on what the USA wants, and if it wants to stave off default it can do so indefinitely by parceling out dribbles of aid, just enough to prevent collapse, and redefining “default”.

  46. bolasete says:

    forgive me. i must have seen a ghost. having mentioned habermas, he resurfaced today at counterpunch (http://www.counterpunch.org/2015/06/26/jurgen-habermas-on-faith-and-knowledge/).
    yalensis: as to the difficulty of marx, my second ex-wife, high-schooled in berlin, claims the culprit is the german language itself. notwithstanding the closeness of english and german the syntax is so different that german becomes, truly, a foreign language. it ain’t french.

    • bolasete says:

      yal: that german dagmar henn article is now on saker in good english: http://thesaker.is/the-dark-side-we-should-never-be-like-them/

      • yalensis says:

        Thanks!
        I had succeeded in sweating through 3 pages of the German, but now I think I will switch to the English.

    • Moscow Exile says:

      When one to long, complex sentences in German to listen has, must one for the end of the sentence to wait, in order for the verb to hear.

      • Moscow Exile says:

        The first work of German literature that I had to study was Theodor Storm’s novella Aquis Submersus, 1876.

        I can never forget its turgid opening lines:

        In unserem zu dem früher herzoglichen Schlosse gehörigen, seit Menschengedenken aber ganz vernachlässigten »Schloßgarten« waren schon in meiner Knabenzeit die einst im altfranzösischen Stile angelegten Hagebuchenhecken zu dünnen, gespenstischen Alleen ausgewachsen …

        Word for word and not changing the German word order, the above reads as follows:

        In our to the former ducal palace belonging, since time immemorial however quite neglected “palace garden”, had already in my boyhood the once in old French style laid out box tree hedges into bare, ghostly alleyways grown …

        And how about this:

        Der Reichtum der Gesellschaften, in welchen kapitalistische Produktionsweise herrscht, erscheint als eine ”ungeheure Warensammlung“

        written by Herr Doktor Marx himself?

        Literally:

        The wealth of societies, in which capitalist production ways reigns, appears as an “immense wares collection”.

        The opening line of Das Kapital.

        In good English thus:

        The wealth of those societies, in which the capitalist mode of production
        reigns, presents itself as an “immense pile of commodities”.

        Alles klar?

        • bolasete says:

          1876!!! what was it like in the days of the soviets + electrification?

          • bolasete says:

            i recall a japanese nobelist -might have been the one who shared the prize with feynman- who claimed that when he did physics he had to think in english as japanese didn’t lend itself to physics apprehension. so, since you know english and russian and german, does german, or its syntax as you demonstrated above, actually affect perceptions?

            • Moscow Exile says:

              Yeah! You’ve got to wait for the verb to get the punch line of a gag, sometimes for quite a while, which often makes German jokes a drag, leading to the English native speaker’s wrong perception that the Germans have no sense of humour.

              Japanese verbs are tagged on the end of a sentence as well.

              I should add that in my opinion Germans certainly do have a sense of humour, as do Russians. However, because Russian smiles don’t come for no reason, Americans especially think that Russian are dour, miserable and glum, because they don’t wish all and sundry a nice day all the time, which meaningless salutation being accompanied by a beaming and likewise meaningless smile.

              • Moscow Exile says:

                German joke:

                “Also jedes Mal, wenn mein Mann einen Orgasmus hat, dann lässt er einen Schrei los wie Tarzan!” berichtet die Frau ihrer Freundin. “Aber das ist doch nicht schlimm!” –
                “Eigentlich nicht – aber ich wache jedes Mal davon auf!”

                “So, everytime my husband has an orgasm, he cries out just like Tarzan does”, a woman tells her friend.

                “So what’s so bad about that?”

                “Well, nothing really – but every time he does it, he wakes me up!”

                Well, I thought it was funny.

                🙂

                • Jen says:

                  Reminds me of the joke about different nations’ ideas of foreplay.

                  French idea: flowers, dinner, wine, sex
                  Italian idea: flowers, dinner, wine, dancing, sex
                  Latino idea: flowers, dinner, wine, dancing, caressing, sex
                  English idea: “Oi, you awake?”
                  🙂

                • Moscow Exile says:

                  As regards Jen’s story on foreplay in different cultures, my Glasgow pal, who was my best man and who studied in Atlanta, told me this tale, which he insists is true.

                  He studied in the USA because, though looking at him now it is hard to believe, he was an accomplished sportsman – a long-distance runner – and got a scholarship to Georgia State University after having been head hunted by his sporting acquaintances, a Glasgow husband and wife team, whose names I cannot remember now but who were track medallists at the Moscow Olympics, 1980.

                  Anyway, his tale was that he had arranged a date with some Atlanta girl and after picking her up, drove off in the direction of some big burger joint where, I believe, he had first chatted her up. As they approached the place, she just turned round to him and said: “Forget the burger! Let’s just fuck”.

                • marknesop says:

                  I had a couple of mates on the East Coast who had novel techniques. One would select a table near the girl’s bathroom, reasoning that at one time or another in the course of an evening nearly every girl in the place would walk past. When they came out he would ask each one, “Would you like to fuck?” He swore an average one in six would say Yes, but I never saw any examples. Another would show up at the bar just as it opened, buy a half-dozen beers at once and then put one on each of five tables besides the one where he was sitting. As the place filled up he would monitor his traps, and when he saw a couple of nice-looking girls at one of those tables he would pretend to be coming back from the washroom, say, “I’m sorry, I’ll move” and they would say “no, no, our mistake, we thought the table was free, please join us”, and he would.

              • marknesop says:

                I remember doing a NATO tour with the German Zerstörer HESSEN – this was a U.S. Eastern seaboard NATO cruise rather than the much-prerred (by North Americans) European one. We visited Mobile, Alabama, Charleston, South Carolina, New York and a couple of other evidently forgettable ports, since I have forgotten them. We were in Mobile for Mardi Gras, and some of the Germans had always wanted to see it in its most popular home, New Orleans. So they rented a big car and I went with maybe 5 of them from the Weapons and Combat departments to New Orleans. It was a little bit drunk out, so I don’t remember too many details, but we definitely didn’t stay overnight so it must have not been too far between the two cities. But yes, they had a great sense of humour. Mind you, they all spoke excellent English and mostly spoke that because I don’t know very much German and not enough to converse in sentences.

                Something that did make me laugh, and oddly, I was thinking about it just the other day, is that someone always gets trapped on Bourbon Street in their car. The police block off both ends of it because it is an end-to-end and wall-to-wall street party, but there are any number of side streets and somebody always manages to get lost and force their way into the crowds in their vehicle. Then they might have an hour and a half wait in dense crowds to inch their way to the next street which allows them to escape, even though it might be only two blocks from where they came in.

          • Moscow Exile says:

            That’s the publication year. I didn’t read it then. I read it in 1986, which was when the Soviet Union still existed, of course.

    • yalensis says:

      Dear bolasete:
      That’s a freaky coincidence (about habermas in Counterpunch).

      I might have mentioned, I have been reading a very good book by David Hand, called “The Improbability Principle”. He mentions this phenomenon whereby you hear about some person you never heard of before; and within days their name is everywhere, and you are hearing it all the time!
      It’s just a statistical coincidence, not evidence of a “collective subconscious” or anything like that, but it’s kinda funny when it happens!

      • bolasete says:

        in the words of the immortal nero wolfe: in a world of cause and effect, coincidence is always suspect.

  47. Jeremn says:

    Ah, so that is what it is all about. Tusk says the EU should spend more on defence. The EU. It used to be such a progressive little union.

    His tweet, kindly retweeted by Jens Stoltenberg

    • Tim Owen says:

      I wonder how much that tweet is worth to someone 5-10 years hence? And Jesus, how to repay him for this favour.

      “No, really, he’s willing to sit on our board? Why we’d be honoured! Why didn’t we think of that. Brilliant!”

  48. et Al says:

    Russia: Other Points of View: PUTIN AND CHARLIE ROSE INTERVIEW TRANSCRIPT
    http://www.russiaotherpointsofview.com/2015/06/putin-and-charlie-rose-interview-transcript.html

    For those of you who didn’t see the Charlie Rose Show last week after Rose returned from the StPetersburg International Economic Forum, the following is submitted. Sharon

    Guest Column by Vladimir Putin

    June 23, 2015

    Interview with the President of Russia and Other Parties at the St. Petersburg International Economic Forum..
    ###

    The rest at the link

    & Patrick Armstrong’s latest sitrep too:
    http://www.russiaotherpointsofview.com/2015/06/russian-federation-sitrep.html

    • marknesop says:

      I am regularly surprised by the degree of geopolitical knowledge Putin seems to posssess. I imagine he knows what hot-button subjects are likely to come up and can probably prepare himself to some extent, but he seems never to be caught by surprise by anything, and always has an answer ready to go. Contrast that with doughheads like John McCain and his creative geography that has Iraq bordering on Pakistan. But he’s still the go-to guy for “America stands with you” declarations in front of crowds of cheering protesters and always the firast one to advocate transfers of U.S. weapons to the dissident nation du jour. And he could probably keep himself in Gucci loafers until he pops his clogs just in what he makes on the Sunday-talkies circuit. People listen to him respectfully although he has the geographic grasp of a sixth-grader. But every time Putin opens his mouth, they have the “Lies!!!” cry spun up and ready to go. What’s unreasonable in what he said?

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