The horizon is not so far as we can see, but as far as we can imagine

Open Thread

Use to discuss topics unrelated to recent posts.


The End Of The Post-War & Post-Soviet Eras


Week-end Wrap – Political Economy – August 27, 2023


  1. someofparts

    It dawned on me this week that “healthcare” in the U.S. isn’t just privatized these days, it is fully criminalized.

    1) the laws were changed to exempt vaccine manufacturers from legal liability after which the manufacturing of vaccines metastasized rapidly
    2) the court-enforced legal discovery process is the only way we are EVER allowed to learn the results of any tests a company runs on a drug

    So, we are not allowed to see any of the research on a vaccine, to see what the risks or side effects might be, and we are also not allowed to sue companies for any harm their drugs may cause, and then … civic and government authorities try to make us give our children these drugs.

    The criminality by the drug companies is bad enough. The fact that the government is openly abetting and enforcing for these guys is all the way over the line into textbook fascism.

    Meanwhile, since Russia has won the arms race with her hypersonics and the funeral dirge for the petrodollar could be heard at the recent BRICS meeting, Chinese intelligence is picking up signals that the U.S. plans to double down on resorting to bio-weapons.

  2. Chuck Mire

    You won’t find these links on Facebook:

    The education of Frances Haugen: How the Facebook whistleblower learned to use data as a weapon from years in tech:

    Haugen’s calls to change Facebook’s incentives have broken through because of careful planning and enthusiasm for deep research, according to interviews with her and with those who know her.

    The Facebook Files:

    The Wall Street Journal, October 1, 2021

    Facebook Whistleblower Frances Haugen: The 60 Minutes Interview (13:36):

    Frances Haugen says in her time with Facebook she saw, “conflicts of interest between what was good for the public and what was good for Facebook.”

    Facebook whistleblower Frances Haugen testifies before Congress | full video (3:59:25):

    Facebook whistleblower Frances Haugen testified before Congress again on Wednesday. Haugen filed complaints with federal law enforcement and told “60 Minutes” in October that in her time at Facebook she saw “conflicts of interest between what was good for the public and what was good for Facebook.”

  3. Willy

    Even all fast food restaurants have large, obvious poster boards advertising all of their prices. So that consumers can compare how they compete with each other.

    When have you seen a medical office run like that?

    I haven’t had any doctor who recommended a specialist or simple procedure ever know what the price is gonna be. Not in over 20 years. In the old days all the single practice doctors usually knew their prices offhand.

    I like that wording, criminalized. Criminalized capitalism.

  4. Willy

    I’ll be repeating this about our third-party proselytizers.

    They always seem to want the votes siphoned away from the Democratic establishment. Why do these Democratic Party Establishment haters never talk about siphoning votes away from the right?

    They tell us to ally with our economic brothers from the right. Yet they never provide any credible economic populist candidates from the right. Or movements, or blogs, or names.

    But you just told us that conservative minions are perceiving all the economic same problems as leftist minions are. Where are all these conservative populist leaders, who aren’t obvious dissembler conmen on some hidden plutocratic dole.

  5. different clue


    We could speak of “bizfash” and “kulturfash”. Both parties support bizfash in their own way. The Republican party supports kulturfash and the Democratic party supports anti-kulturfash so as to create a velcro decoy zone of conflict to lure people into. The kulturwar conflict is real but it is also a velcro decoy zone of pre-shaped forever-battlespace.

    A Party which could square that circle could get somewhere if enough time remains for it to even get anywhere at all. Different groups may try different approaches.

  6. mago

    So much happening
    We snuffle and sniff for truth
    But come up empty

    Looking here and there
    Confused by tornado changes
    And fickle weather

    When digging deeper
    We encounter mud and more—
    A stench everywhere

    All right. That’s some kind of attempt to use a triplicate haiku form to describe how difficult it is to understand and parse complex issues in a world on fire.

    It’s an open thread.

    Outside my window
    A chickadee on a limb
    Waiting for its time
    (To access the suet and the water.)

    Never mind
    A salubrious and beneficial weekend to anyone who may be reading these errant words.
    A tu salud y bienestar

  7. VietnamVet

    Where are you going to hide?

    This is now a three-tier world, the NATO empire, the BRICS Axis and everyone else. The unilateral world and the US dollar reserve currency are no more. Sovereign nations are divorcing themselves from the global corporate racketeers.

    The contradictions are so enormous that the truth no longer exists.

    World uranium mine production:
    Kazakhstan 21,227 tons is surrounded by BRICS nations.
    Canada 7,351 tons.
    Namibia 5,613 tons is next to South Africa.
    Australia 4,087 tons.
    Uzbekistan 3,300 tons is also surrounded by BRICS nations
    Russia 2,508 tons is sanctioned by the West.
    Niger 2,020 tons is the supplier of 20% France’s nuclear electricity. Can NATO loose Niger’s uranium too in addition to Russian natural gas?
    China 1,700 tons is a BRICS nation.

    USA and Canada produce 25% of the world’s petroleum. Canada and Australia produce 25% of the uranium.

    The basic fact is that the mob corporate-state is simply unable to cut its energy use by 75%. The truth that the energy supply on the earth is finite is heresy to the ruling elite. Joe Biden has prohibited uranium mining around the US Grand Canyon. To him this means that future reserve supplies of uranium are not needed. This is obviously not true unless mankind can proliferate mini-fusion suns across the world. Yet, losing control of the African Sahel region is a good reason for the deep state to plant a bomb on the Wagner Group executive jet in Moscow to remove the Russian mercenaries from a looming global resource conflict there.

    Only sovereign nations with the support of its citizens can sacrifice together so that their families and society can survive a very dangerous future.

  8. Curt Kastens

    I had maintained that Prigrozin’s antiques earlier this year were scripted in advance.
    I could not believe at the time that anyone, including Prigrozen, could be so stupid to believe that they would get away with publically attacking the Russian leadership during a time that the nation was involved in a war of survival, let alone starting a rebellion. Besides, Prigrozin was not the real leader of Wagner. One of the people who died on the airplane with him was the real leader, and that person had a real military background, not the background of a c(r)ook. The real leader whose name I unfortunately forget would have surely had more sense.
    But the crash of the plane that killed these people seems to indicate that I was wrong. This is not conclusive proof by any means. President Biden, and the west also had a propoganda motive to kill Prigrozin. But to say that the a western intellegence (military) agency planted a bomb on the plane and actually doing are two quite different things. It would not have been a mission impossible. But it would have been a difficult task.
    If the west pulled this off. If the west did it they made the Russian Intellegence Services look amorish in compairison. Although the west had a PR motive to carry out this attack. I can not see that the attack will have all that much effect on Wagner’s operations. After all it is a military organization that is actually bankrolled by the Russian Government. Such an organization is by design capable of surving the death of its leader. That means that this incident will not really have much influence on what is going on in Niger and the surrounding region. That was not a motive for the west to bring down the aircraft, if they did it.
    It should be obvious that we will never know for sure who did it because those in charge of the investigation have such an obvious conflict of intrest. They obviously can not point the finger at their own government. But they also can not point the finger at the second most likely suspect, President Biden, because blaming him would be to admit thier own government’s incompentence.
    The whole Prigrozin affair dovetails nicely with the coup in Niger. The west wildly cheered Prigozin’s percieved attempt to overthrown a legally democratically elected government. Yet when people actually successfully did such a thing in Niger it was condemned. The western media and much of the population of the west are driven by only one principle when it comes to coups, if you are on our side your coup is a popular revolution, if you are not on our side it is a crime against civilization. I on the other hand take a much more consistent approach. I say, a coup is a legitimate way to deal with a government that you do not like even if it has a 99% approval rating. What is good for the goose is good for the gander.
    That brings me to the US coup of 1963, the role that the Democratic Party plays in this society is that of the covert arm of the Republican Party. People have been trying to take control of the “centrist” Democratic Party leadership for decades. They have been unsuccessful. To that without taking out the leadership of the US MIC first may make trying to change the behavior of the leadership of the Democratic Party a real mission impossible. But that was wishful thinking. The time of soulutions is past. Now it is the time to suffer the consequences of our collective failures.

  9. Curt Kastens

    This comment is related to the one that I just sent. Right now I put the odds of Putin being behind the death of Prigrozin and his staff at 60%. That Biden was behind it at 30%. That someone else not connected to a government plot was behind it at .5%. That the crash was an accident 9.5%.
    But to say that the crash was an accident does not neccessarily go deep enough. An accident is often really just a cover story for how the simulation director(s) send history off in a new direction. I am sure that reader’s here will be familure with the expression, an act of God. Well as a scientist I do not believe that a God takes an interest in the affairs of humans. But as a model scientist I do recognize that we are trapped inside of a simulated universe. In this simulation it could be that everything is preordained to happen. After all if you type 9 x 9 in to a calculator it is preordained that you get 81. Our entire simulation could just be the a collection of preordained figures run for the entertainment of some beings outside of our simulation. But it is possible that those outside of the simulation have the possibility to change the originally entered numbers for reasons of entertainment or research.
    If the aircraft collided with a peice of debris from a satellite falling back to earth or a piece of debris from an aircraft falling from a higher altitude one would be hard pressed not to see that as a miracle. But if the crash failed due to a poor maintence practice, or a neglegent decision, I think that one should not rule out the miracle explination. It would simply be a case of the simulation director sabotaging someones decsion making.
    After all this crash happened at a time that was terrible for Russia. It happened on a time that all 3 top members of the organization were on the plane. It does not matter that all 3 have been on the same plane before. That was from reports that i have heard a seldom occurance. It happend a day after Prigrozin was reported to have returned from Africa. I think that this last part is important because I do not think that Prigrozin actually was in Africa, or even in a desert in Kazakstan. I think that he made that video in a movie studio. On that video he is wearing enough gear to keep a man warm on the top of the Greenland icesheet. Yet there is not a bead of sweat on him. Furthermore the timming of his death alone calls in to question of whether or not he was really in Africa.
    I think that crash of this aircraft would be a classic example of screwing with all the heads of those with sentience inside of the simulation. After all, although it would have been easier for Putin to pull off this assination, if it was not an accident. The timing of the event was terrible for Russia. Of course that could have deliberately been part of an effort to point the finger away from Putin.
    The bottom line is that if neither Putin nor Biden was behind it, there is a 95% chance that it was a miracle.

  10. Curt Kastens

    In Reference to Coups.
    If you look at the really really big picture I think that it is foolish to say that because a government is popular that it is legitimate. The whole idea of legitimacy is a myth. It is a completetly subjective concept. In my subjective thinking it is not very important how rulers obtain power. What makes thier rule legitimate or not is what they do with that power once they have it. If I like what they are doing they are legit, if I do not like what they are doing they are not. The opinions of other people do not count unless they agree with my own OR and this is an important OR they can convince me to make their opinions MY opinions. And that sometimes has actually happened.

    On another minor subject. It was once said by a famous person that the ink of the scholar is more valuable than the blood of the martyer. But in not to many years the blood of the beet will be more valuable than the blood of the martyer or the ink of the scholar.

  11. Z

    One might think that amphetamine use would shorten the user’s life span by taxing their weary hearts with all those extra beats, but one would be wrong to believe that.

    The speed seems to actually strengthen their hearts, perhaps from the extra exercise of their tickers from the speed, and as long as they don’t overdo it and OD themselves into a heart attack (a rarity, most ODs are due to Fentanyl and other opioids), it appears to increase their life spans. Maybe the increased velocity of the blood flowing through their system plays a role in it as well.

    Take a look at Congress, it’s full of speed freaks who have been using it for several decades. Watch the old stage whore Seven Hundred Dollar and Zero Sense Joe popping around in his ego-driven rantings, frequently about U.S. foreign relations or increasing jail sentences for drug use, back in the 90s. Though they may be soulless husks in some ways, these mofos are still around selling out U.S. citizens and advocating for bombing foreign countries and their people just as eagerly and enthusiastically, if not more, as they did several decades ago.


  12. bruce wilder

    RFK Jr is a right-wing populist calling himself a Democrat – surely Willy will fall in love now.

  13. different clue

    @bruce wilder,

    Could you explain in detail how and in what ways RFK Jr is a right-wing populist calling himself a Democrat?

    Can you also explain why you decided to insult a fellow commenter with a “prediction” based on zero analysis or evidence of any kind?

  14. Z

    Christoforou and Mercouris from Duran Locals, who Naked Capitalism often include in their Daily Links and are well worth listening to IMO, seemed to be stumped as to why Ukraine is being told by the West to concentrate their offensive on the Zaporizhia front because even if they somehow make it to their purported goal and seize Melitopol they still wouldn’t be able to hold it anyway since their forces would be so depleted by then.

    But the West’s goal of that offensive is not Melitopol, as Russia surely realizes. Their true goal is, and has been, to seize the Zaporizhia nuclear power plant because if Ukraine can get control over that they can threaten to use it as a nuclear dirty bomb to try to freeze the front and maybe give the West, aka the U.S., the leverage to negotiate a face-saving peace settlement and secure Odessa as Ukraine’s so Larry’s and Stanley’s Asset Inflation Factory Blackrock can ship out the grain from there from all the Ukrainian farmland they bought up.


  15. bruce wilder


    don’t be making demands

    I was responding to

  16. Z

    In regards to Prigozhin, in my view one of two things happened and neither of them have to do with Putin having him knocked off. This, like The “Coup”, is either more Maskirovka … and by that I mean that this was staged, Prigozhin is not dead, and he has snuck off to some beautiful, but lonely Russian hideaway with some trusted company and some government body guards … or the West, probably via direct Ukrainian involvement, killed him by planting a bomb on the plane.

    If you think The “Coup” was true though then I suppose the belief that Putin played a role in either condoning or ordering Prigozhin’s death comes pretty easily to you. If you believe, as I do, that it was The “Coup” then you’d expect that something like this was always in the plans and it seems suspiciously pat to you that things ended up as tidily as they did with a closed casket.

    I do however believe that Utkin was killed, but not on the plane. He could have been placed on the plane after he was dead though. Utkin was supposedly a neo-Nazi and he may have had ties with the Azov and been sympathetic to their cause and could have possibly outed himself as a traitor during The “Coup”. I doubt that Russia is hiding him or that he’d want to be hid. He wasn’t the CIA target that Prigozhin was.

    Almost as soon as The “Coup” came up empty though, the U.S. began talk of getting an ICC warrant to arrest Prigozhin should he wander into the West, which is kind of odd behavior towards someone who supposedly did something, threaten a coup of Putin, that they eagerly pointed towards as signs of Putin’s “hold” in Russia weakening. One would think that the CIA wouldn’t want to immediately make an enemy of someone such as that but they did for some reason.

    Prigozhin had to know it would come down to this because if you burn the CIA in some big way, you better believe that they’ll eventually get back at you unless you can disappear somehow. Otherwise, it’s only a matter of time before they track and drone you. They can even hide behind the Ukrainians and have them do it for them. The CIA would make it a priority to find him. Now though, even if the CIA is skeptical of his supposed demise, how many resources are they going to place towards chasing down someone who may no longer exist?


  17. Willy

    Hillary deserved to be told what a crappy corporate establishment globalist she was, hated by a vast left wing conspiracy. I’m glad she doesn’t show her face in public much anymore. But was punishing her worth getting stuck with three SC justices doing flunkey duties for two+ pluto-corrupt ones?

    I’ll let wiser minds decide.

    An accelerationist might say yes, yes we need to let the drunk smash his car into his child’s bedroom so he finally has his epiphany and checks himself into rehab. A radical might say that the only way is to have the nice men take the drunk away in the little white van. Trump is more like the drunk taking away his daughter away in the little white van, so he can get all her well-intentioned bitching to stop.

  18. different clue

    @bruce wilder,

    If you had an answer, would you need to offer a haughty and peremptory dismissal? My question was very real. In what particular describable ways is RFKjr a right wing populist calling himself a democrat? I am not the only reader who will see if you have an anwer to the question or not.

  19. Willy

    The CIA and/or Ukrainians would’ve taken Prigozhin in to extract any and all Russian and Putin secrets from him. In that case, he would’ve either been witness protected or completely disappeared.

    Any other line of reasoning seems to be one hell of an uphill battle. But who am I to stop propagandizing the ad hominem? That stuff can get amusing.

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