Saturday, March 5, 2022

"I Understand..."

"I understand that fear is my friend, but not always. Never turn your back on Fear. It should always be in front of you, like a thing that might have to be killed. My father taught me that, along with a few other things that have kept my life interesting."
- Hunter S. Thompson
"I was as afraid as the next man in my time and maybe more so. But with the years, fear had come to be regarded as a form of stupidity to be classed with overdrafts, acquiring a venereal disease or eating candies. Fear is a child's vice and while I loved to feel it approach, as one does with any vice, it was not for grown men, and the only thing to be afraid of was the presence of true and imminent danger in a form that you should be aware of and not be a fool if you were responsible for others." 
- Ernest Hemingway, "True at First Light"

"U.S. Gas Prices Soar"

Full screen recommended.
NBC News, "U.S. Gas Prices Soar"
"U.S. gas prices are nearing an all-time high now hovering just below $4 a gallon. The cost of gas has increased every day since the Russian invasion of Ukraine."

"The Ukrainian People Are Being Sacrificed Like Pawns On A Chessboard By The Global Elite"

"The Ukrainian People Are Being Sacrificed Like 
Pawns On A Chessboard By The Global Elite"
by Michael Snyder

"44 million people live in Ukraine, and they are deeply suffering in a war that most of them did not want. Like most of us, the vast majority of Ukrainians just want to live their lives in peace and quiet, but that isn’t going to be possible now. So we should pray for the people of Ukraine, because they are going through a type of hell that is beyond what most of us even have the ability to imagine. And we should be very angry with all of those that caused this war, because it didn’t have to happen.

I want to be very clear about the fact that I do not support the Russian invasion of Ukraine. The Russians could have achieved their goals without a full-blown invasion, but now they have started World War III.

I also want to be very clear about the fact that I place a great deal of the blame for this conflict on the global elite. The Biden administration and other western powers encouraged Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelensky to endlessly provoke the Russians and they made all sorts of promises to him. So Zelensky pushed all of his chips into the middle of the table even though the Russians knew that the U.S. and Europe would not fight if they invaded.

Now Russia has called the bluff, and the U.S. and Europe have stayed on the sidelines. They certainly don’t want to fight the Russians, but they have no problem encouraging the Ukrainians to sacrifice countless lives fighting a battle that they can’t possibly win. Asking the Ukrainians to fight Russia is like asking a skinny 10-year-old boy to fight a 25-year-old heavyweight boxing champion. It isn’t a fair fight.

Many Ukrainians have fought bravely for their country, and this has given the Russian military more problems than they originally anticipated. But as Clint Ehrlich has pointed out, Russia’s early struggles actually make the possibility of any sort of a negotiated conclusion to this conflict must less likely… But the humiliating struggles they’ve experienced, which have been broadcast around the world, change the political calculus.

Russia no longer has the option of looking like a magnanimous victor by accepting a negotiated ceasefire. If President Putin accepts something like a conditional surrender that preserves the integrity of the Ukrainian government, that will be spun as a defeat for Russia. It may sound paradoxical from the outside, but Russia’s *tactical defeats* now make *strategic victory* imperative. To preserve Russia’s aspiration to be a superpower, there must be no doubt at the end of the war who the victor was. It must be Russia. By a crushing margin.

Even if it takes longer than originally anticipated, Russia will undoubtedly win this war. And more Ukrainians will needlessly die with each passing day. Of course it was the U.S. and other western powers that set the stage for all of this. In 2014, the Obama administration and other western powers were behind the color revolution which violently overthrew the democratically elected government in Ukraine. That resulted in an extremely violent civil war between the new U.S.-backed government and the separatists which were backed by Russia.

Things were relatively stable during the Trump administration, but then the Biden administration started filling Zelensky’s head with all sorts of ideas about joining NATO and taking Donetsk and Luhansk by force. And Zelensky bought into what Biden administration officials were telling him hook, line and sinker.

The Russians tried to negotiate, but Zelensky and the Biden administration steadfastly refused to compromise. So the Russians felt like they were out of options, and now the Biden administration does not want to fight a war that they helped to cause. And even though his country is now being destroyed, Zelensky is continuing to talk tough… "Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelensky issued an address to the Russian people on Thursday, according to state media, in which he announced that Russia would pay “reparations” and rebuild “everything” the ongoing war has destroyed in Ukraine."

Oh really? Precisely how does Zelensky plan to achieve that?

The Ukrainian government is also encouraging their citizens to make Molotov cocktails and to set up barriers to block the progress of Russians tanks…"The tone of Zelensky’s speech on Thursday, as reported by the government news site Ukrinform, was significantly less conciliatory than his address to the Russian people last week shortly after Putin began a full-scale assault of Ukraine, in which he emphasized friendly relations between Ukrainian and Russian people and urged Russians to pressure Putin to stop the war. The shift in tone aligns with that of statements from Ukrainian outlets on Wednesday declaring that Russian soldiers would be “slaughtered like pigs” if they attempted to surrender. Ukrainian government social media outlets are actively encouraging civilians to make Molotov cocktails, build roadblocks, and otherwise participate in the war."

Instead of telling women and children to fight the war that they helped to cause, I would like to see Zelensky and his associates get out of the bunker and do some fighting themselves. And I would also like to see Joe Biden, Kamala Harris, Antony Blinken, Jake Sullivan and other members of the Biden administration fly over to Ukraine and join the battle. Of course the same thing applies to Vladimir Putin. Instead of hiding in a bunker in the mountains, I would like to see him on the front lines.

Needless to say, none of these global leaders are actually going to participate in the fight. They are way too important for that. Instead, we are going to continue to see women and children face off against Russian tanks, and that is a disgrace. Wouldn’t it be great if the international rules of war were changed to say that those that start a war must fight in it?

But instead of fighting for Ukraine, the global elite are attempting to put lots of pressure on Russia in other ways. For example, all Russian-owned and bred cats have now been banned from international competitions… "An international cat federation has banned all Russian-owned and bred cats from competing in international competitions, in a move that’s sure to stop Putin’s attack on Ukraine."

No, this isn’t a Babylon Bee story. The Fédération Internationale Féline (FIFe) issued a statement saying it “cannot just witness these atrocities and do nothing.” Yes, I am sure that the citizens of Kiev, Kharkiv and Mariupol will be greatly encouraged when they hear that.

And as Ukrainian cities are pummeled by relentless shelling, the U.S. Army has decided that now is a great time to be “putting its soldiers through training on gender pronouns”… "While Russia wages a full-scale invasion of Ukraine, the U.S. Army is putting its soldiers through training on gender pronouns and coaching officers on when to offer soldiers gender transition surgery, according to an official military presentation on the subject obtained by the Washington Free Beacon.

The mandatory presentation, “Policy on the Military Service of Transgender Persons and Persons with Gender Dysphoria,” was given to officers earlier this month along with instructions for them to train their subordinates on the material. Portions of the presentation were provided to the Free Beacon by a whistleblower who was ordered to undergo the training as a high-ranking officer in the Army Special Forces."

As we sit in comfort here in the western world, major Ukrainian cities are being ruthlessly encircled by Russian forces. Millions of Ukrainians will soon be very cold and very hungry as they are relentlessly shelled by the mighty Russian military machine. But most Ukrainians never wanted any of this. If anyone deserves such a fate, it is the global elite that actually caused this war in the first place.

For years, I have been relentlessly warning that we were heading toward a conflict between the U.S. and Russia, but most Americans weren’t interested in such warnings. Now World War III is here, and the global elite think that they are going to be able to watch it from a safe distance. But this won’t just be limited to Ukraine. War is going to spread, and it will eventually deeply affect all of us."
Related, highly recommended:

Musical Interlude: Juzzie Smith, "Bluesberry Jam"

Juzzie Smith, "Bluesberry Jam"
The amazingly, ridiculously talented one-man-band! lol

"A Look to the Heavens"

“The constellation of Orion holds much more than three stars in a row. A deep exposure shows everything from dark nebula to star clusters, all embedded in an extended patch of gaseous wisps in the greater Orion Molecular Cloud Complex. The brightest three stars on the far left are indeed the famous three stars that make up the belt of Orion. Just below Alnitak, the lowest of the three belt stars, is the Flame Nebula, glowing with excited hydrogen gas and immersed in filaments of dark brown dust.
Below the frame center and just to the right of Alnitak lies the Horsehead Nebula, a dark indentation of dense dust that has perhaps the most recognized nebular shapes on the sky. On the upper right lies M42, the Orion Nebula, an energetic caldron of tumultuous gas, visible to the unaided eye, that is giving birth to a new open cluster of stars. Immediately to the left of M42 is a prominent bluish reflection nebula sometimes called the Running Man that houses many bright blue stars. The above image, a digitally stitched composite taken over several nights, covers an area with objects that are roughly 1,500 light years away and spans about 75 light years.”

"To Tell The Truth..."

"In ordinary times we get along surprisingly well, on the whole, without ever discovering what our faith really is. If, now and again, this remote and academic problem is so unmannerly as to thrust its way into our minds, there are plenty of things we can do to drive the intruder away. We can get the car out or go to a party or to the cinema or read a detective story or have a row with a district council or write a letter to the papers about the habits of the nightjar or Shakespeare's use of nautical metaphor. Thus we build up a defense mechanism against self-questioning because, to tell the truth, we are very much afraid of ourselves."
- Dorothy L. Sayers
"The world is a comedy to those that think,
 a tragedy to those who feel. " 
- Horace Walpole, In a Letter, 1770

"It Is Common To Assume..."

"It is common to assume that human progress affects everyone - that even the dullest man, in these bright days, knows more than any man of, say, the Eighteenth Century, and is far more civilized. This assumption is quite erroneous. The great masses of men, even in this inspired republic, are precisely where the mob was at the dawn of history. They are ignorant, they are dishonest, they are cowardly, they are ignoble. They know little if anything that is worth knowing, and there is not the slightest sign of a natural desire among them to increase their knowledge."
- H. L. Mencken

The Daily "Near You?"

Salmon Arm, British Columbia, Canada
Thanks for stopping by!

The Poet: Langston Hughes, "Dreams"


"Hold fast to dreams
For if dreams die
Life is a broken-winged bird
That cannot fly.
Hold fast to dreams
For when dreams go
Life is a barren field
Frozen with snow."

- Langston Hughes

"Life, eh?"

"We said together, wistfully, 'Life, eh?' It says everything without having to say anything: that we all experience moments of joyful or painful reflection, sometimes alone, sometimes sharing laughs and tears with others; that we all know and appreciate that however wonderful and precious life is, it can equally be a terribly confusing and mysterious beast. 'Life, eh?"
- Miranda Hart

“A Short Course in Get-a-Life Science”

“A Short Course in Get-a-Life Science”
by Lore Sjöberg

“There are about 250 million U.S. internet users, according to something I read on the internet, and about a quarter of them use discussion boards, according to something I read on some discussion board. And yet, I’m not seeing much evidence that the corpus of comments clogging the commons is going to produce the next Bertrand Russell, or for that matter the next Nipsey Russell.

There seems to be a certain desperation in the tone of your typical bile-posting poster child. They obsessively stomp from site to site, from article to article, fuming and chafing to share their opinion with the world. Oddly enough, often as not that opinion is “get a life.” I’m not exactly sure what “a life” is in this context, but it’s apparently impossible to capture on video, because I’ve never seen a YouTube comment saying, “Ah, this person truly has a life! Good show!” I was, however, able to isolate the Three Laws of Getting a Life:

1. Life is inversely proportional to time: People who need to get a life invariably, according to online comments, have too much time on their hands.

2. The best way to tell that someone lacks a life is that they are doing something just because they want to. This strikes me as a bit like defining “starvation” as “a bellyfull of homemade ice cream with chocolate sauce,” but you can’t argue with science.

3. Life-deficit is communicable. If you tell someone to get a life, that will often inspire a third party to impress upon you the importance of a life, and your current lack of same.

This led me to wonder: Who has less of a life, the person who needs to get a life, or the person who says “get a life” to the person who needs to get a life?

According to the Second Law, the more self-indulgent and less practical an activity, the less of a life the participant has. While skydiving in a Bulbasaur costume is clearly both fun and pointless, it does require some sacrifice (hours spent sewing, plane rental fees) and it has some benefits (free drinks, casual sex with Pokégroupies). By comparison, telling someone to “get a life” is as easy as it is useless. But then, telling someone who just told someone “get a life” to get a life is clearly even more pointless. That implies that life-deficity can increase infinitely. Shouldn’t there be a lower limit where one has no life at all? (Or, to be more exact, where one has only zero-point life due to quantum fluctuation?)

That’s when it struck me, an insight worthy of a Hendrik Lorentz or a Florence Henderson: Needing to get a life isn’t the result of lacking life; life is the result of lacking the need to get a life! The scales were lifted from my eyes and set back in the eye-scale cabinet. Of course! If you spend every waking minute of your limited lifespan doing something drearily important, then you don’t have an abundance of life, you have zero “get-a-life.”

On the other hand, as I’ve learned from either chaos theory or Elliott Smith lyrics, meaninglessness is infinite. There’s always a way to make your actions more pointless and less purposeful. This is easily proven: If you post “Get a life!” you need to get a life less than someone who posts “Get a life!!” Thus, adding an exclamation point makes any activity more, well, pointless. Because there’s an infinite supply of exclamation points (at least according to classical typographic theory), there is no limit to the amount of get-a-life one can reach.

The Universal Get-a-Life Formula: I’ll be publishing the details of my work in an upcoming issue of “The Journal of Cretinology and Loser Science,” but suffice to say I have worked out the Universal Get-a-Life Formula. Here it is:

g’ = (g + 1)cue

…where g is the amount of get-a-life of the individual being commented on, c is the number of words in the comment that suggests that that individual get a life, u is the number of all-uppercase words in the comment, e is the number of exclamation points in the comment and g’ is the resulting amount of get-a-life exhibited by the commenter.

I have arbitrarily decided on Tron Guy as the international standard for one unit of get-a-life. Thus, by definition, Tron Guy has a get-a-life factor of 1 TrG. Most people who spend less than an hour a day using the internet have a get-a-life factor of 0.2 to 0.4 TrG. Charlie Sheen, by comparison, tops out at 6.351 TrG.

Now say someone using the handle “halokillr” visits a video of Tron Guy — or a photo of Tron Guy, or an article about Tron Guy — and leaves the following comment: “GET A LIFE!!!!! ha ha SO DUMB and y r u DOING?!?!!!” According to my calculations, halokillr now boasts a get-a-life factor of 212 times 69, or just over 41 billion.

I await my Nobel Prize.”

"Having One Of Those Days?"


“Jim Rickards: The New Great Depression Is Where We Are Now”

Full screen recommended.
The Atlantis Report,
“Jim Rickards: The New Great Depression Is Where We Are Now”

"The Center Of The Universe..."

“When science discovers the center of the universe,
a lot of people will be disappointed to find they are not it.”
- Bernard Baily

"How It Really Is"


"The Real Estate Bubble is About To Explode, With Scott Walters"

Full screen recommended.
Dan, iAllegedly AM 3/5/22:
"The Real Estate Bubble is About To Explode, With Scott Walters"
"One of the hottest topics is Real Estate. I truly feel that we are about to see the bubble pop in a big way. Today on iAllegedly Live we are lucky to have Scott Walters Realtor share his thoughts and expertise on where the real estate market is at and where it’s headed."

"Putin Deserves the Nobel Prize"

"Putin Deserves the Nobel Prize"
by Brian Maher

"Today we may discombobulate and astound you. We may even enrage you. That is because we nominate demon Vladimir Putin for the distinguished Nobel Prize - in medicine. That is correct. Vladimir Putin should be awarded the distinguished Nobel Prize in medicine. Are we out of our wits? After all…He has turned the Hippocratic oath upon its head — and done vast harms. He has laid violent hands upon his neighbors, slaying thousands. He is the consecrated enemy of all civilized men and all civilized nations.

We dispute not one word of it. As we thundered earlier this week: Ukrainian blood - and Russian blood - will forever stain the fellow’s hands. He can never rinse it away. We nonetheless nominate this hellcat for the Nobel Prize in medicine. Again, why?

Here is the answer: The coronavirus has menaced us for two years. We have endured vicious home imprisonments, grave economic privations, government ruthlessness and all species of associated miseries. None of it has leashed the virus. Nor have the vaccines - which is now obvious to any with eyes able to see and willing to see.

Now comes along the Russian berserker… Within the space of days, he has scotched the virus and put it to rout. He has liberated us at last from this hell-sent scourge.

Economist Mr. Martin Armstrong: "The joke running around is that Putin should be nominated for the 2022 Nobel Prize in medicine for he cured COVID-19 in 48 hours – something nobody else has been able to do in three years. Just hours before Biden’s State of the Union, he rescinded the mask requirement. So just hours before, you would get COVID if you did not have a mask. Thanks to Putin, suddenly Congress could actually meet without masks. That is something nobody else could have done in a matter of hours."

We agree. And our applause reaches astonishing decibels, deafening decibels. And so we nominate him… without reservation… for the Nobel Prize in medicine. Or rather, we throw in with his nomination — we are not the first to nominate him.

The august Nobel selection committee will cite Mr. Putin for his “extraordinary efforts to end pandemic of COVID-19”:
To the official statement we might fix an addendum: “Thanks to these extraordinary efforts to end the pandemic of COVID-19, Dr. Anthony Fauci will finally go away.” And so we speak our piece on behalf of Mr. Vladimir Putin. We are forever in his debt. The fellow deserves every last cent of the $1 million check a Nobel Prize winner receives… even if United States sanctions prevent him from cashing it…

Below, James Howard Kunstler has more - much more. As usual, James gives it with the bark off. Read on."
"Putin to the Rescue!"
by James Howard Kunstler

"Say what you will about Russia’s Cleanup-in-Aisle-Four operation in Ukraine. It sure changed the subject from the murderous COVID-19 madness - cooked up by political therapists who have all the answers for our salvation - to the hard realities of power politics. And at just the right time, too, as ever more hard data leaks through the bastions of captured corporate media to morally indict the criminal public health establishment and their elected enablers throughout Western Civ.

In other words, the whole COVID story was falling apart. Though the CDC and the FDA were hiding and fudging all their numbers as best they could, the insurance actuaries and the humble morticians had no such inhibitions about reporting an upsurge in strange deaths. Whistles were blowing over the botched Pfizer approval trials. The world was beginning to grok how dishonest, deadly and sinister the whole COVID caper really was - from the engineered origins of the disease to the lethal mechanisms of the “vaccines” -  when it became necessary to divert the world’s attention.

Plus, the oaf Justin Trudeau badly tipped his hand on the West’s tilt into tyranny… and American truckers were revving up their convoys… someone, please, do something! Get Russia back in the center ring! And so the floundering establishment activated the still-potent workings of mass formation to fire up what looked like Act 1 of World War III. Forgive me for saying what I will about Russia’s invasion of Ukraine.

The U.S. authorities wanted it. They set it up nakedly by replaying the Cuban Missile Crisis in reverse, and they refused to negotiate in good faith as to their using Ukraine as a forward base for NATO on Russia’s border. The Russians couldn’t have been plainer about their intentions. They’ve been telling the U.S. to keep Ukraine neutral for over a decade, to not outfit the place for military shenanigans.

What part of that did America not understand? Every part, apparently - and on purpose. It raises the question, of course, as to whether we actually have an interest in that faraway land. I think the answer is: not hardly, except as a utensil of control and antagonism against Russia. As to the people of Ukraine, let’s be honest: We put them in harm’s way, and then we cried crocodile tears over them - most mawkishly in the increasingly bizarre ritual we call the State of the Union message. All those yellow-and-blue lapel pins and fashion accessories. What pathetic pretense.

Who in the U.S. government, from our founding in 1789 to 1991 - while Ukraine was part of Russia in one way or another - gave a passing thought to Ukraine? Answer: nobody. And then, after the crack-up of the USSR, Ukraine was “in play.” It all culminated in the 2014 CIA-sponsored “color revolution” that ousted then-president Viktor Yanukovych, who was inclined to join Russia’s Eurasian Customs Union of trade relations rather than the U.S.-wished-for NATO or EU.

And ever since then it has been one American intrigue after another - including a brisk trade in grift and bribery by the Biden family, the Clinton syndicate, the next gen of Kerrys and other entitled elites from over here selling their influence.

And now the economic sanctions on Russia, which are sure to blow back on the countries issuing them. Europe has to pretend that it doesn’t need Russian oil and gas, that it doesn’t need cheap uranium to run their nuke power plants, that it doesn’t need the Baikonur Cosmodrome to launch their satellites and so on.

More likely, these moves will accelerate the collapse of Western Civ’s banking system and stock and bond markets and erode the U.S. dollar’s role as the global reserve currency - a long-standing “exorbitant privilege” for getting stuff from all over the world in exchange for promises to pay some Tuesday in the distant future.

The reader may ask: Why does this blog appear to take Russia’s side in the current conflict against the U.S. and our supposed allies? Answer: Why would you trust a government (ours) and its captive news media after years of their blatant lying and tyrannical overreach? These parties appear to be at war against their own people, that is, against us - certainly more than Russia is. Especially in the historic moment when all our mendacious “narratives” are being exposed as false? Russian collusion? Indictments underway and more to follow? COVID-19?

A mega-crime of mass homicide spawned by a matrix of pharmaceutical racketeers, corrupt government officials and accomplice news organizations? Stolen elections? Don’t, for Gawd’s sake, even try looking at the slime trail of evidence. I won’t bother listing the many transgressions of Wokery against our culture and history. And all of a sudden, it appears a lot of American citizens have had enough of being deceived. I’m with them.

Now consider this: What if it turns out that Russia can complete its Cleanup-in-Aisle-Four operation relatively quickly, with a minimized loss of life and damage to the everyday infrastructure of Ukraine, and arrange things there afterward so that Ukraine is not a menace to anyone, either Russia or the West?

I sincerely believe this is their intention - just as I sincerely believe that their leadership is actually sane, and ours appears not to be. Perhaps Russia will even offer Ukraine (or its rearranged regions) assistance in recovering from the foolishness it played along with to its own sorrow? What if Russia actually has no intention of starting World War III? Will we keep trying to start it anyway?

Whoever is behind “Joe Biden” has done all they can to derail American Life, and the feckless leadership of Euroland has also seemed avid to trash its future. There is a welling movement, in America, at least, to resist all that, to sweep these degenerates out of power and make a concerted course correction in the direction of sanity, rectitude, liberty and generosity of spirit toward each other.

An awful lot of trouble has already been set in motion by the idiots running things. There is a difficult slog ahead. Is your head screwed on? Where will you stand?"

"Dangerous Pfizer Vaccine Fraud Fully Exposed" (Excerpt)

"Dangerous Pfizer Vaccine Fraud Fully Exposed" (Excerpt)
by Dr. Joseph Mercola

Story At-A-Glance: 
● "Former BlackRock portfolio manager Edward Dowd is speaking out about the real motivations behind the pandemic, which include a global debt problem and an imminent global collapse of the financial industry.
● After the Great Financial Crisis, the decision was made to increase the money supply, but this debt-based financial system is unsustainable and Dowd believes it’s on the brink of collapse.
● Restrictions on travel, vaccine passports and rampant censorship enacted as measures to control the pandemic are all a global way to control the collapse and its aftermath.
● Dowd’s friend in the biotech industry told him that the all-cause mortality endpoint had been missed by Pfizer in the original clinical trial - this means that in the jab group there were more deaths than in the placebo group.
● The biotech executives who saw the Pfizer data decided they weren’t going to get boosters, and the people who weren’t yet injected were not going to get the shot.
● Looking to Wall Street may give some of the greatest clues that what Dowd says is correct - even with COVID-19 shots so prevalent, Big Pharma stocks are dropping; Moderna is down 70%.

Another high integrity patriot, former BlackRock portfolio manager Edward Dowd, is speaking out about the real motivations behind the pandemic, which he believes aren’t about COVID at all. Instead, it’s all about money - specifically a global debt problem and an imminent global collapse of the financial industry.

During his career, Dowd witnessed two bubbles - corporate fraud and then bank fraud - and now he believes we’re in the third bubble, which involves central banks and governments. “A lot of the regulatory agencies have been captured by deep-pocketed money interests, and so we have to spread the word and awareness through educating people, because the governments aren’t going to come and rescue us this time. We, the people, are going to do it, I believe,” he says.

Deaths Increased After COVID Shots: Dowd became suspicious of COVID-19 shots early on, as he reviewed data on side effects from the Vaccine Adverse Event Reporting System (VAERS). “These jabs kill people and they maim people. That’s my personal belief, and I think I’m 100% correct,” he says. Dowd has been analyzing data about mortality rates before and after COVID-19 shots became widespread, and found that death rates worsened in 2021 - after the shots became prevalent - compared to 2020, particularly among non-COVID-related deaths among young people.

For instance, Scott Davison, the CEO of Indiana-based insurance company OneAmerica, reported the death rate for 18- to 64-year-olds has risen 40% compared to before the pandemic. Further, insurance companies citing higher mortality rates include Hartford Insurance Group, which announced mortality increased 32% from 2019 and 20% from 2020 prior to the shots. Lincoln National also stated death claims have increased 13.7% year over year and 54% in quarter 4 compared to 2019. Dowd tweeted:

“Randy Frietag CFO just explained that in 2021 the share of young people dying from covid doubled in the back half of the year & that's driven the result for Lincoln & its peers. He cited 40% in 3Q and 35% in 4Q were below the age of 65. Mandates are killing folks. This shouldn’t be happening with miracle vaccines in a working age population period and a mild Omicron.”

Further, Dowd pointed out “a spike in mortality among younger, working-age individuals coincided with vaccine mandates. The spike in younger deaths peaked in Q3 2021 when COVID deaths were extremely low (but rising into the end of September).”

Dowd also reported data from public funeral home company Carriage Services, which announced a 28% increase in September 2021 compared to September 2020, while August had a 13% increase. He tweeted: “Business has been quite good since the introduction of the vaccines & the stock was up 106% in 2021. Curious no? Guys this is shocking as 89% of Funeral homes are private in US. We are seeing the tip of the iceberg.”

The Global Debt Bubble Is at Its Peak: "The pandemic was the perfect cover for central banks to print money for an “emergency,” Dowd said. “Under the cover of Covid they were able to print 65% more money to keep this thing afloat, but we’re at the end days here.” After the Great Financial Crisis, the decision was made to increase the money supply, but for every dollar you create, you create a dollar in debt, which then gets multiplied across the globe.

This debt-based financial system is unsustainable and Dowd believes it’s on the brink of collapse. “My overarching thesis is that we have a global debt problem, and after the Great Financial Crisis (of 2007-2008), all the central banks and the governments started pumping money into the system.” Since 2008, the central banks have cooperated to keep the debt bubble afloat - he used the example of negative yielding bonds in Europe - but it can’t stay afloat forever.

Restrictions on travel, vaccine passports and rampant censorship enacted as measures to control the pandemic are all a global way to control the collapse and its aftermath, Dowd believes, put in place under the guise of medical care: “If you know a debt bubble is going to blow up, and pensions won’t be able to be paid and people’s life savings will be wiped out, wouldn’t it be interesting to use COVID as cover to set up a system to prevent all that from happening, a medical system under the guise of medical welfare or help. It’s a stealth tyrannical system that can be switched from medical to riot prevention pretty quick.”

“That’s what I would do if I was anticipating a global debt problem,” he added. When asked whether the collapse is guaranteed, Dowd said, “Absolutely, it’s just a matter of time.” He didn’t want to speculate on whether the collapse would be this year, next year or at another point in the future, but believes it will be sooner rather than later. Still, he stressed that people shouldn’t run out to make investment decisions based on this prediction."
Please view this complete article, with videos, here:

"Is the U.S. Trying to Destroy the Dollar?"

"Is the U.S. Trying to Destroy the Dollar?"
by Jeffrey Tucker

"A good rule in evaluating American foreign policy: Nothing is as it seems. Everyone I know is playing the signaling game with regard to the Russia/Ukraine war. Who is the bad guy, and who is the good guy? Every American pundit seems to know with absolute certainty, all of which recalls the great insight of H.L. Mencken that we seem culturally incapable of comprehending complexity when it comes to any subject of foreign relations.

What’s remarkable here is how the populist pressure seems now to prevail over diplomatic wisdom. We saw that last week with the tremendous push to punish Russia through financial exclusion. Who was harmed by this most? Look at the lines of citizens in the streets of Moscow, desperately trying to get their cash out of banks. Look at the value of the ruble. Look at the Russian stock market.

Playing With Fire: A few commentators mentioned that harming Russian citizens themselves is a great tactic because then the citizenry will turn on Vladimir Putin and pressure him to reform or resign. This opinion is unbearably naive. The last time I heard this was over U.S. intervention in Iraq: The claim was that attacking Iraq would lead to the overthrow of Saddam Hussein. Obviously, that didn’t happen. The U.S. eventually just killed the guy. Is this where the U.S. and NATO are now with Putin? Not likely. With regard to Putin, not even the U.S. is this reckless. In which case, one wonders why this is happening. What accounts for this wild rhetoric?

It’s a display of appalling amateurism that would have been unthinkable a few decades ago. The people in charge today are silly people, without experience, who have only their woke credentials to guide them. That leads to massive mistakes.

Dethroning the Dollar: The decision to cut off the Russian central bank’s access to $630 billion of foreign reserves has truly shaken the globe. Most of that is held in Special Drawing Rights, a unit of account maintained by the IMF as a claim on hard currencies, which means mostly dollars. A sudden decision to disable that access tremendously devalues the dollar as a store of value for central banks around the world. That’s why such moves have been resisted in the past.

The implications could be devastating for the dollar as the de facto world-reserve currency. Why would central banks stock up for a rainy day if the U.S. is so ready and willing to demonetize its own currency when it opposes some policy of another government? The answer is that they will think very carefully before doing so in the future.

Until recently, the U.S. only took such actions as measures against terrorists. They were deployed against the Taliban and Iran. But nothing like this has happened with regard to a G-20 country that is a settled part of global supply chains. The psychological impact here will be felt around the world, particularly within China’s sphere of influence.

If a central bank’s saved reserves can be turned on and shut off like a light switch, the entire stock fails to achieve its purpose. The $630 billion would otherwise have been used to shore up the value of the ruble when it came under massive assault. Instead, the central bank had to sit back and watch the devastation, powerless to do anything about it.

Maybe the Biden administration thinks this is all fun and games, or perhaps some ridiculous display of bravado. But consider the implications for the future of the dollar as a world-reserve currency. If a currency can be regionally demonetized, devalued or otherwise completely smothered for purely political reasons, is it really a money at all?

Dumb: It’s one thing - and evil enough - that the U.S. would urge the shutdown of its own economy for a virus, closing businesses by force in the ridiculous idea that it is somehow going to slow or stop the spread. That’s astonishingly dumb simply for the pyschological impact on investors and business creators. It destabilizes and raises the worst possible question: How safe really is my property?

Now imagine this shutdown mentality applied to the world of international money and finance. The U.S. has said to the whole world that deploying dollar reserves can only happen with permission of the U.S. government and its allies. It has made the whole value or operational efficacy of the dollar itself contingent on political discretion! That’s not what money is supposed to be. A money that becomes that has harmed itself.

The China Factor: A mostly buried article in The Wall Street Journal sent the warning to just the right people: "If currency balances were to become worthless computer entries and didn’t guarantee buying essential stuff, Moscow would be rational to stop accumulating them and stockpile physical wealth in oil barrels, rather than sell them to the West. At the very least, more of Russia’s money will likely shift into gold and Chinese assets."

Indeed, the case levied against China’s attempts to internationalize the renminbi has been that, unlike the dollar, access to it is always at risk of being revoked by political considerations. It is now apparent that, to a point, this is true of all currencies.

The risk to King Dollar’s status is still limited due to most nations’ alignment with the West and Beijing’s capital controls. But financial and economic linkages between China and sanctioned countries will necessarily strengthen if those countries can only accumulate reserves in China and only spend them there. Even nations that aren’t sanctioned may want to diversify their geopolitical risk. It seems set to further the deglobalization trend and entrench two separate spheres of technological, monetary and military power.

The New Normal? Keep in mind: China owns $3.3 trillion in dollar reserves. That is a major factor in keeping the dollar king and limiting the inflationary impact of the Fed’s quantitative easing. Why would China trust holding these in the future? Will the shocking actions against Russia cause China to shift to commodities, gold or some other store of value, such as crypto? If that happens, we enter into a new world. Which is to say: The dollar is being dethroned by incredibly stupid U.S. actions, the world economy is falling apart and global trade is no more. Economic, financial and monetary wars are the new normal.

You would think that would be the headline. It’s not because most people cannot handle the truth. The WSJ article ends as follows: “What can investors do? For once, the old trope may not be ill advised: Buy gold. Many of the world’s central banks will surely be doing it.”

Brutal Truth: Let’s review the above in simpler terms. The U.S./IMF just demonstrated to the entire world that it has the willingness and power to smash the ability of a world superpower to do anything useful with its foreign reserves. They can all be made worthless based on a political decision. That decision takes a huge step toward effectively demonetizing the dollar for hundreds of millions of people.

Even if this conflict ends in some kind of diplomatic peace - and let us hope that this happens - the lesson of the attack on Russia’s central bank will last for years to come. Indeed, it could:

1) Mark the end of the dollar’s use as the de facto world-reserve currency.
2) Cause China to de-dollarize its balance sheet.
3) Bring terrifying new realities home to the U.S. by domesticating the consequences of Fed policy.
4) Kick off another huge round of inflation and high interest rates that will last for many years.
5) Fundamentally destabilize all world trade.

Two years ago, some ridiculous policymakers said they would go medieval on a virus. With these disastrous decisions in Russia/Ukraine, we are stepping even further back in time to a new dark age. What’s worse: My sense is that no one is really intending this as such. It’s the consequence of irrationality, ignorance, panic and shortsighted virtue signaling pushed by social media frenzies.

What a world and what a time! It will take decades to rebuild what’s been destroyed, and the effort hasn’t even begun."

"On the Cusp of an Economic Singularity"

"On the Cusp of an Economic Singularity"
by Doomberg

“One mustn't look at the abyss, because there is 
at the bottom an inexpressible charm which attracts us.” 
– Gustave Flaubert

"In 1988, Stephen Hawking published one of the best-selling science books of all time. In "A Brief History of Time," Hawking made the impossibly complex topics of astronomy and modern physics accessible to a lay audience, inspiring countless young students (and at least one green chicken) to pursue a career in the sciences. It is estimated that the book has sold an incredible 25 million copies worldwide.
In Chapter 3 of the book, Hawking introduces the reader to the Big Bang Theory and the concept of a gravitational singularity, which Wikipedia describes as “a condition in which gravity is so intense that spacetime itself breaks down catastrophically.” Essentially, since the laws of physics are eviscerated at a singularity, what happened before it is both irrelevant and unknowable, and one could consider such an event as having reset the universe’s clock. Here's how Hawking describes it in his book (emphasis added throughout):

“This means that even if there were events before the big bang, one could not use them to determine what would happen afterward, because predictability would break down at the big bang. Correspondingly, if, as is the case, we know only what has happened since the big bang, we could not determine what happened beforehand. As far as we are concerned, events before the big bang can have no consequences, so they should not form part of a scientific model of the universe. We should therefore cut them out of the model and say that time had a beginning at the big bang. Many people do not like the idea that time has a beginning, probably because it smacks of divine intervention.”

The simple truth of a singularity applies whether it occurred in the past or will in the future: what transpires on the other side is unknowable from here.

Given the horrific and still-unfolding events of Vladimir Putin’s invasion of Ukraine and the West’s collective response to it, one can’t help but wonder whether we are on the cusp of an economic singularity in which the laws and bedrock beliefs that formed the foundation of international economic order for decades break down. The consequences are similarly unknowable, but we suspect a great reset may indeed be upon us. Even if a ceasefire is announced moments after we publish this piece, shocking damage to the global economic system has undoubtedly already been done and certain genies won’t easily be put back into their bottles.

Before proceeding, we should state clearly that what follows is not a critique of the Western response to the invasion but rather an assessment of the potential first- and second-order consequences of these historic moves, as well as speculation on where some of the harshest economic crises might manifest in the near future. While we join in the hope that these measures achieve their desired direct effect, there’s no denying these are truly unprecedented times.

The most stunning move by the US and its allies was cutting off the Russian central bank’s access to most of its $630 billion of foreign reserves. Without access, one wonders if these funds are really “its” reserves at all? What is ownership without access? No matter how justified that move might seem today, there’s no escaping that this action will reverberate for years to come. In a blunt opinion piece in the Wall Street Journal titled “If Russian Currency Reserves Aren’t Really Money, the World Is in for a Shock,” reporter Jon Sindreu had this to say about how central banks everywhere must now view their reserves:

“Many economists have long equated this money to savings in a piggy bank, which in turn correspond to investments made abroad in the real economy. Recent events highlight the error in this thinking: Barring gold, these assets are someone else’s liability—someone who can just decide they are worth nothing. Last year, the IMF suspended Taliban-controlled Afghanistan’s access to funds and SDR. Sanctions on Iran have confirmed that holding reserves offshore doesn’t stop the U.S. Treasury from taking action. As New England Law Professor Christine Abely points out, the 2017 settlement with Singapore’s CSE TransTel shows that the mere use of the dollar abroad can violate sanctions on the premise that some payment clearing ultimately happens on U.S. soil.”
In for a shock, indeed. In essence, Sindreu’s piece argues that this move substantially increases the risk that the US dollar loses its privileged status as the global reserve currency and, at a minimum, likely ensures a polarization of the global economy into at least two camps – the West in one and Russia/China/Iran/Saudi Arabia plus other targeted or aligned countries in the other. If $20-30 trillion or more of global GDP spurns the preexisting reserve currency, is it still the reserve currency? If reserves can be negated overnight, are they even reserves? How many other countries must hedge against the possibility of similar sanctions? Should we add India to the list?

“The Biden administration is weighing whether to impose sanctions against India over its stockpile of and reliance on Russian military equipment as part of the wide-ranging consequences the West is seeking to impose on Moscow over its invasion of Ukraine. Donald Lu, the assistant secretary of State for South Asian affairs, on Thursday told lawmakers in a hearing that the administration is weighing how threatening India's historically close military relationship with Russia is to U.S. security.”

Another eyebrow-raising development is the US Department of Justice’s establishment of the ominously-named Task Force KleptoCapture, which has the stated intent of seizing (not freezing) the assets of Russian oligarchs. Here’s how the New York Times describes it: “The creation of the task force reflects the harsh scrutiny cast on Russian oligarchs, many of whom built their fortunes because of their ties to Mr. Putin. Even though they may not be directly involved in Russia’s invasion of Ukraine, they enable Mr. Putin by helping him conceal his own assets and remain in power. Russia’s oligarchs have invested their fortunes in assets around the world, and their ties to Mr. Putin have helped them gain influence and connections in the worlds of fine art, real estate, Wall Street and Silicon Valley.”
We are the first to admit that “Russian oligarch” is a less sympathetic faction than “Canadian trucker,” and perpetrating a war on another sovereign nation is way more serious than honking horns in downtown Ottawa, but many of the same questions we raised about the consequences of Justin Trudeau’s impulses seem apropos here. Who gets to define oligarch? What qualifies as enabling? Do the accused have any recourse? If assets in the West are subject to swift confiscation without due process for even indirectly enabling a currently unpopular-with-us national political leader – no matter how justified that unpopularity might be – what sane foreign asset owner wouldn’t at least consider liquidating assets now and onshoring what wealth they can preserve? Have we thought through the dominos that fall by fundamentally rewriting property laws?

Further down in the same New York Times article, we find another interesting passage. We’ve long argued that a crackdown on cryptocurrencies is imminent. Will the US use the Russian invasion of Ukraine as a pretext for doing so? It sure seems like it: “The task force will target people and companies that are trying to evade anti-money laundering laws, hide their identities from financial institutions and use cryptocurrencies to evade sanctions and launder money. The Justice Department said that it would use civil and criminal asset forfeiture to seize assets belonging to people subject to sanctions. The department said that its work would complement that of a trans-Atlantic task force announced this past weekend to identify and seize the assets of penalized Russian individuals and companies around the world.”

Yet another meaningful development is the move by multinational corporations to self-sanction all aspects of their business activity tied to Russia, undoubtedly motivated by the disturbing images coming out of Ukraine and pressured by their stakeholders to do something about it. This is not the first time corporations have been called to action after certain political events – Western governments have a long history of trying to implement controversial policies by leaning on business leaders to do their dirty work for them – but these recent developments likely cause concern even among Western leaders. Perhaps naïvely, the US and its NATO allies specifically tried to carve out Russian oil and gas from the reach of sanctions, recognizing our critical need for these essential supplies (a weakness we’ve been writing about for many months). But as the Financial Times describes in a recent report, if the zeitgeist uniformly labels an entity toxic – even an entire G20 country – there can be no carve-outs: “In reality, however, many western banks, refineries and shipowners are in effect ‘self-sanctioning’ — behaving as if Russian oil has already been placed under sanctions. ‘Russia’s oil has effectively become toxic,’ said one banker."

Some of the biggest buyers of Russian crude have cancelled shipments and orders as companies from banks to insurers and shippers retreat from Russian business. Roughly 70 per cent of Russian crude was ‘struggling to find buyers,’ according to consultancy Energy Aspects. As proof, Russia’s flagship Urals crude, a staple for refiners in north-west Europe and the Mediterranean, was quoted at a record discount of more than $18 a barrel on Wednesday.”

Here are just some of the potentially catastrophic economic consequences to ponder if these events continue to snowball down a steepening slope. The obvious place to start is in the energy sector, where European natural gas prices have been trading like a crypto scam coin, rising and plunging by unthinkable amounts on a daily basis. The economic impact of both the elevated price and the volatility of energy on Europe’s manufacturing sector will be revealed in the coming weeks and months – we suspect the results will stun many.

Similarly, Russia and Ukraine are among the most prolific producers and exporters of critical foodstuffs in the world, and prices of agricultural goods are flashing red. In a piece we wrote all the way back in October of last year called "Starvation Diet", we predicted a global mass starvation event was nearly inevitable, and that was before war broke out in Ukraine. Here’s how the piece opened: “We are on the cusp of a significant mass starvation event of our own making. Soon, tens of millions of the world’s most impoverished people will die from an inability to feed themselves, while many of those comfortably getting by now – especially in the Western World – are in for a shock.”

Unsurprisingly, wheat has traded limit up for several days in a row and prices are reaching levels that condemn vast swaths of the global population to the fate we reluctantly described above. Food inflation is the catalyst for many popular uprisings, and the path from empty shelves to the guillotine has historically been a direct one. Now consider further that the West has outsourced the production of energy and critical mining materials to impoverished countries. What happens when those governments get overthrown and the production assets get nationalized?

There are countless other alarming consequences which we could document here – ahem, Russia produces 40% of global Palladium supplies and, ahem, Ukraine is responsible for the majority of global Neon gas exports (critical for the production of lasers used to make microchips, which are already in chronically short supply) – but even we are losing the capacity to ponder the totality of the economic doom that awaits.

Recent statements by US political leaders don’t inspire much confidence in our ability to navigate this crisis without substantial further economic and political escalation. In a single 24-hour period, House Speaker Nancy Pelosi called for a ban on Russian oil imports while simultaneously stating her opposition to the development of US oil to replace them. Meanwhile, Republican Senator Lindsay Graham went on live television and flippantly called for the assassination of the President of Russia. To drive his reckless point home, he then took to Twitter and amplified his message:
A big bang is coming. Brace for impact."

Friday, March 4, 2022

Gregory Mannarino, "NATO Warns Of Potentially Wider Conflict; The FED Also Warns; Food And Energy Shortages"

Gregory Mannarino, PM 3/4/22:
"NATO Warns Of Potentially Wider Conflict; 
The FED Also Warns; Food And Energy Shortages"

"Get Ready For A Terrifying Breakdown Of Our Food Systems"

Full screen recommended.
"Get Ready For A Terrifying Breakdown Of Our Food Systems"
by Epic Economist

"The total collapse of our food and energy systems is dangerously close, and it is safe to say that once that happens, the world will never be the same. Unfortunately, most people have no idea of the challenges we are going to face in the coming weeks and months. Many Americans are still thinking that their lives will go on as normal because the conflicts that recently erupted are on the other side of the globe. They have no idea about just how much their lives are going to be affected by the disruptions brought on by this tragic event.

We must remember that the world was already suffering the worst food crisis in modern history. Food supplies are still getting tighter and tighter with each passing month. To make things even worse, the countries in conflict are large exporters of grains and oils, and of course, the escalating conflict is going to change that. This is the beginning of a terrifying breakdown of our food and energy systems, and that is going to affect every man, woman, and child on the entire planet.

Given that both nations are the world’s largest producers of several types of grains and vegetable oils, the aggression is pushing food prices to skyrocket, and in the U.S. that spike is going to be particularly sharp. According to Kelly Goughary, the senior research analyst at Gro-Intelligence, an agriculture data platform, collectively, the countries usually account for 29 percent of all wheat exports and 75 percent of global exports of sunflower oil, So if exports from the two countries are reduced or completely cut off, how is the rest of the planet going to replace that output? Have you ever considered what is going to happen if the world faces a sweeping shortage of grains?

Moreover, American Bakers Association President Robb MacKie warned that consumers will start seeing rising prices in anything that has grain in it because the grain markets “are all tied to each other.” In essence, this means we will be paying much higher prices for bread, beer, cereal, animal feed among other things, which will impact billions of dollars worth of products. “In a situation where the whole supply chain is already stressed, if [the conflict] goes on more than a couple weeks, you will start to see food prices spinning out of control” he predicted.

On the other hand, the global energy crisis is also causing some alarming distortions on the market. In an attempt to ease the effects of the energy crunch Europe is facing, the U.S. is exporting large amounts of liquefied natural gas, but the costs do to so are very elevated. And since our domestic supply of natural gas is getting smaller, prices in the U.S. are currently 60% higher than a year ago and will continue to go higher, according to Rystad. The same goes for propane, coal, and electricity. And the latest increase in the price of oil, going over $100 per barrel, means that soon we will be paying five to seven dollars for a gallon of gasoline.

In a recent opinion piece, analyst Mike Adams, summed up the current state of affairs and shared some very gloomy forecasts about the near future. “We predict food riots in U.S. cities as food inflation makes even basic sustenance unaffordable to low-wage workers. The working poor are headed toward a massive uprising as both fuel and food become nearly impossible to afford, even at $12 – $15 hourly wages. At some point soon, just driving to work makes no economic sense because the gas is nearly as expensive as what people earn at work”.

Adams also warned that the consequences of the global conflict could lead us to the total collapse of our society and economy. The combination of a global strife, rising food and fuel prices, rampant inflation, and currency debasement are likely to create “a total collapse of the world we once knew. Forget about affordable food or just-in-time delivery of anything. The world is about to become extremely inconvenient, expensive, and broken. The supply chain disruptions will get FAR worse from here forward,” he wrote. This is the most insane societal environment that we will soon find ourselves living in. This isn’t a drill. We’re moving towards a horrifying breakdown of our basic systems, and that is going to make our entire society fall into pieces, shaking our lives to the core as it happens.