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The Adderall Shortage Is Just the First Major Shortage


Week-end Wrap – Political Economy – October 23, 2022


  1. bruce wilder

    Craig Murray notes the intensification of the top-down politics in UK politics — the professional political class across the narrow neoliberal spectrum apparently believes it does not need popular support and a modicum of public acquiescence can be purchased from PR manipulation thru Media. This is only a further shift toward authoritarian repression but is stark right now, while it may well be obscured shortly as democracy is forgotten. Look now and remember.

    The spectacle of UK politics dresses up differently from U.S. politics, but the same deviation of political elite from electorate and popular concerns is accelerating. In the U.S. the spies are taking control of government and politics; arguably, the spooks in the U.K. are driving toward putting in Keir Starmer (that is what I think is happening) and a government of authoritarian repression.

    In other news, the warring parties in Ukraine predict the Other army is going to blow up a dam and flood a city. Who to believe?

  2. Astrid

    We’re vacationing in Quebec for the week, 6 nights in Montreal and 3 nights in Quebec City. Still masking, no indoor dining, no public transit use. Since that bars us from our usual high end dining haunts, we’ve been visiting butchers, bakeries, patisseries, fishmongers, chocolatiers, and markets instead (We’re staying in Airbnbs because it’s easier to control our airflow and gives us full kitchens (this is more expensive than staying in a standard room at the Fairmont in Quebec City, Airbnb is certainly becoming no bargain after various fees and taxes). Random thoughts:

    Masking at perhaps 2-5% everywhere, most of which are blue surgical masks. Nobody harassed us for wearing them but it’s certainly unusual.

    Very few open terrace and takeout options available on the high end. There were plenty of outdoor dining spaces still for casual places and lower rates restaurants, but back to business as usual for the nice places.

    Ice cider is delicious.

    Quebec produces A LOT of cider. Every food shop seem to offer dozens of choices.

    Quebec raspberries better than California raspberries. OMG on size of local celeriac and leeks and lettuce.

    The weather is about 10 C higher than it should be for this time of the year. It is very pleasant for walking and hiking.

    Sea urchins are very easy to prepare with a sharp tipped pair of scissors. And pretty cheap to boot.

    Gooseneck barnacles are only slightly harder to prep but they definitely aren’t cheap.

    Oysters are not necessarily cheaper than in the US, but you can pick between dozens of varieties at the bigger fishmongers.

    Yes, I am the sorry of person who will take 25 lbs of country bread cross international borders.

    Jean Coctu pharmacies consistently stock Betadine Cold Defense nasal spray. Still not sure if it works, but it’s another layer of defense on top of the Aura masks.

    Mont Royal is at peak foliage color. Quebec City parks are a bit past but still very pretty.

    The waterfalls are pretty spectacular. And we keep getting there after 5 PM so there’s nobody at the ticket booth.

    Pandemic travel is tedious and restricting, but I’m still glad to have done it. It’s good to be out of my head once in a while.

    Seeing quite a bit of low rise new condo development in Montreal, still much better than Portland or Toronto.

  3. Chuck Mire

    What pregnancy looks like, in photos, up to 9 weeks:

    In 13 US states, abortion is banned even in the earliest stages of pregnancy. But we rarely see what such tissue really looks like.

    It doesn’t fit the imagery of anti-abortion groups.

  4. Ian Welsh

    Sounds lovely, Astrid. Quebec has a GREAT food culture. I say that supermarkets in Montreal often have better food than many restaurants in Toronto. And dining more low end, I hope, is giving you experiences you wouldn’t normally get, and in Quebec (as I suspect in France) is still going to lead to an awful lot of very good food.

  5. capelin

    Dr John Campbell on New Boston Corona virus; lab-grown gain-of-function chimera. Lets see what happens when we mixn’match Wuhan and Omicron … Wow, cool, 80% kill rate in humanized mice.

  6. Willy

    A vacationing US-Saudi dual national was arrested upon landing in Riyadh for committing the crime of tweeting badly. Apparently in an authoritarian nation, any sort of moderate disagreement with the ruling elites shall result in a 16 year jail sentence, even if all of the tweets were sent from Florida.

    In other news, one of Elon Musk’s top financiers in his Twitter buyout is a prominent member of the Saudi royal family. Bad irony?

    Is this another episode of “even further shift toward authoritarian repression” via “free speech”? I guess we’ll find out.

  7. Astrid

    Definitely agree about the great food culture and yes, LOTS of food (having visited 50 or more food shops). And quite affordable by North American standards. Nothing was cheap, but a lot of the really good stuff was priced lower in dollar terms (without the CAD to USD discount) than mediocrities offered south of the border. The best of which stands up well to the best of France and Italy.

    Quebec and especially Montreal feels civilized and human. The center city is still dominated by well kept up walk up apartments with small first floor store fronts. Very walkable and bikeable and I recall a very functional public transit system from a prior trip. Relatively low proportion of ostentatious expensive yuppie housing and basically no McMansions. Lots of little neighborhood parks and lots of little kids and young parents. It’s feels much more humane compared to pretty much every other North American city including Toronto and Vancouver.

    If there is a plausible avenue to moving to Quebec for me I would do so despite the 6 months winters. As it is I am going to have to investigate the price of a cottage on Ile d’Orleans

  8. different clue


    The Saudi Barbarian judicial kidnapping of a dual Saudi Subject/ American Citizen is also a demonstration that the Saudi Barbarian owning family considers America weak and dependent enough on Saudi Barbarian oil that the regime there can take Americans hostage any time they like. Other governments have begun doing the same. It is a price of diminishing power and revenge for DC FedRegime powerplays in the past.

    From now going forward, the only realistic response the American government can take to reduce the number of these foreign government kidnappings is to draw up a list of ” go there at your own risk” countries.

    ” My fellow Americans, God help you if you go to Iran, Russia, North Korea, Saudi Arabia, China, ( other countries to be added as needed), because we can’t, and we won’t even try anymore.”

    And after a warning like that, any American who still goes to these places is clearly seeking a Darwin Award.

  9. Willy

    Agree dc. I’ve been saying for a while now that allowing a tiny handful of people to make all the major decisions for the rest of us doesn’t usually end well. Too many of their kind claim to be these humble nice guys only here to help, to then rip off their mask after achieving power to reveal a power-hungry megalomaniac.

    But then, my opinion might be different if more power-hungry megalomaniacs ripped off their masks to reveal humble nice guys.

  10. Astrid

    After Assange (an Australian in the UK) and Meng Wanzhou and that Alstom guy and whatever the heck the Alex Saab situation was and now banning US citizens from working for Chinese companies, I am a lot more worried about the long arms of US “justice” than speculate on what other governments may do to me. Not to mention the US and Mossad assassination of Iranian and Lebanese and Syrian politicians/scientists/generals.

    Also, I don’t know about Russia, but Chinese citizenry don’t typically consider rape and shiving to be part of the normal prison experience. Pretty sure that suicide by police isn’t an viable option in China or Iran. I would take my chances with traveling to Iran or China or Russia. Somehow I’ve managed to travel there many times in the last 30 years and never ran afoul of the public security bureau people.

    Again, always amazing how much more time Americans spend speculating about about the purported sins of others and not noting the confirmed sins of the American government, even against their fellow Americans.

  11. Jason

    We May Have Only a Few Months to Prevent the Next Pandemic(!)

    An op-ed featured prominently in the always warmongering, fear-inducing NY Times by Dr Craig Spencer, who is Director of Global Health in Emergency Medicine at New York-Presbyterian/Columbia University Medical Center and who currently divides his time between providing clinical care in New York and working internationally in public health.

    Dr Spencer uses the column to tell us that “there are dozens of reforms needed and debated” but he then runs headlong into a focus on three (quite familiar) things which he feels “require immediate attention and investment:

    1) disease surveillance
    2) strengthening of the global health care work force
    3) ensuring equitable access to treatments and vaccines

    The looming threat acts as an impetus, per usual, to advance Western-aligned surveillance capabilities under the auspices of disease control.

    Dr Spencer goes on to say that “There’s also an urgent need for greater capacity to create treatments and vaccines in places where they’re often in short supply and last in line for distribution” but he then, per usual, skips over any actual talk about treatments and recklessly jumps right to vaccines.

    Dr Spencer is also quite bummed that politicos haven’t forced US taxpayers to pony up the hundreds of billions of dollars ($88 billion alone for “pandemic preparedness and ‘biodefense'”) for the endeavor:

    “Congress remains unable to secure funding for future Covid vaccines and response, let alone the $88 billion requested over five years for pandemic preparedness and biodefense.”

    Dr Spencer concludes with a direct comparison of the “needs” of his vested interest to that of the MIC deep state:

    “We need to treat pandemic preparedness as a permanent priority, as we do our national defense, which is allocated hundreds of billions in annual funding even in times of peace.

    The beaming Dr Craig Spencer:

  12. Willy

    Whenever I travel I completely ignore the locals but consume whatever the locals have to offer because in today’s authoritarian world, the more stuff one controls the more legitimate one gets to be.

    But there’s that Rick Steves guy. He says the common Iranians and Russians are pretty much normal folks just like the rest of us, so get out there and meet them. I wonder what Rick Steves would be like as our dictator.

  13. Astrid

    I knew a woman who was active in the Washington state Democratic party. Rick Steve had a reputation, not a good one. I think he was known for being an over the top sycophant to the perceived power centers.

    Before this I had the displeasure of trying to rely on his guidebook for Italy, where’s we quickly found inaccuracies and bad recommendations, especially for restaurants and services. Good thing we could fall back on using the Blue Guide, Rough Guide, TripAdvisor, and TheFork. Our rather fabulous driver/guide for Tuscany mentioned that there was a major scandal where Rick Steve’s guide had recommended a restaurant that wasn’t even open at time of publication. Our guide also said that Rick Steve recommended guides were locally known to be poor quality operators.

    I know Russian and Iranian emigres. Not saying that they’re typical for their countrymen (my Iranian friend traces her descent to the main line of the Safavids), but definitely not “just folks” even in their most hair down and relaxed moments.

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