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 ICJ Genocide Case Is No-Win For The Rules Based Order


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  1. Hi Ian,

    Did you had a look at the Tony Seba presentations?


  2. bruce wilder

    Charlie Stross had a brief essay expounding the thesis that the dominant Western ideology is techno-optimism / techno-philia. I don’t he meant to claim originality. If anything, he was restating a view that has become common, as billionaire tech bros finance their boyhood fantasies and ordinary people refuse to face the implications of resource depletion and overpopulation.

    It does not take any sort of genius to see how quickly and radically such an ideology is bound to crash and burn. It was fashionable to worry at one time about tech ignorance among the general population. In the meantime, magical thinking among elites manipulating “the narrative” has taken over.

    I tried to catch up with the Ukraine War and learned that the quality of reporting has not improved and no body knows nothing. And, France made two young gay guys Prime Minister and Foreign Minister. Yes, they were in a civil union but no one seems to know when that ended. Very young — the PM is the youngest head of government in the world and supposedly personally popular and kind of right-wing. FM off to Kiev, natch. This will work out well.

  3. Curt Kastens

    German politicians are actually talking about outlawing the German political Party Alliance for Gemany (Alliance für Deutschland or AFD). This party is now the 2nd most popular in Germany. In my opinion if the German Government does this the German government will be declaring war against a quite substantial part of its population.
    I mention this current situation because many years ago I wrote an essay about overthrowing an illegitimate but popular government. I mentioned that people of intelllegent good will have to drop this idea that a government is legitimate because it has the support of a majority of its adult population.
    This is an important conclusion to reach because only about 2% of the population in many countries are actually politically mature clear sighted adults.
    Another recent report that I read is that Sputnik Globe reports that the CIA is trying to recruit Russians who have studied in western countries not only to spy in Russia but to build a 5th column that could be instrumental in overthrowing the government that Putin is currently overtly in charge of. I mention that because what is good for the goose is good for the gander.
    Back when I wrote my essay I was concerned that the attempt to return legality and lefitimacy to the a country could lead to a civil war. Well at this point a civil would not bother me in the slightest. On one hand there is no reason to have a civil war because at this point nothing can be saved. But on the other hand there is no reason not to have a civil war because nothing can be lost that is not going to be lost soon anyways.
    A question that I posed which I find rather interesting is would the operation to return legality and legitimacy to a government be police operation or would it be a military operation. If it is a police operation giving someone an opportunity to surrender before you kill them would be a requirement. But if it is a military operation you can kill people with no warning what so ever.
    Ideally such an operation should be carried out using Bowie knives and .45 cal Colt pistols loaded with silver bullets, and a special mixture of gasoline, petroleum jelly, and perfume.
    Sadly if such a thing was actually going to happen in the places that it needed to happen most it would have happened before February 2022. But I can pray that perhaps lesser events will bring constirnation to those in the appropriate high level positions. Events like a misplaced garbage can.

  4. Curt Kastens

    Dialoge is obnoxious when it is with people who are not serious about fairness.

  5. Mark Level

    2 items to share this evening–

    1. Rest in Peace, Gonzalo Lira. Dead by medical neglect at age 55 in a Ukro gulag, after having $80,000 expropriated/ stolen for his very temporary freedom & attempt to flee across the border, 8+ months ago, after being beaten and abused by fellow inmates with admin approval obviously. (He reported this on his last, failed escape attempt posting on YTube.) Of course, not only is the Banderist regime, Zelensky et al directly responsible, but so is the US State dept. which evidently did exactly Zero to prevent the abuse, beatings & medical neglect (he suffered from pnuemonia in both lungs and severe edema before dying) despite Lira’s being a U.S. citizen. Naked Capitalism did a nice piece with all the grisly details. While I previously shared online here that I didn’t have the highest opinion of Lira, a right wing grifter & fan of the Pinochet regime his family worked for, & additionally I was unceremoniously banned forever from MoonofAlabama for saying negative things about G.L. (but adding that I wished him NO harm) & also being civil to a gay woman who shared similar misgivings viz his character by the Angry Kraut Bernhardt, NC covers his solid early work, including in Yves’ Smith’s tribute exposing James Vasquez, who pretended to be a Ukie Resistance “hero” to grift & steal money from dumb ShitLibs who hate “the Putin.” Also, the NYT reported the same later, without crediting Lira of course. NC link is at My condolences to the family, despite their history.

    His friend Alexander Mercouris spoke emotionally about his sadness about Lira’s miserable abuse & neglect leading to death, he did get his wife & children out of Ukraine before reporting bravely & truthfully the faults of the Puppet regime. Mercouris rightly noted that his exposes on YouTube were all in English, primarily for an Anglo-American audience, & should’ve been protected therefor by the US 1st Amendment. But we know how seriously the Biden apparatchiks take that, don’t we?

    2. Regarding bruce wilder’s take on the new French PM, he looks like a younger, slightly smaller Macron!! They were pictured together, one could even say a Macron (mini-me) Clone. The exact same “fuck the proles” economic mania of course. The main difference in their sexuality would be Emmanuel had a mommy-teacher fixation (married his former teacher, who had children as old and older than him) & the new guy’s gay as shared. Tres charmant, or as the famous Orson Wells slogan goes, “Ahh, the French!”

  6. mago

    Having lived long enough to witness generational changes, I can vouch for the constancy and consistency of the ugly visages of the ruling classes which are in turn a reflection of their toxic emotions, ideologies and agendas.
    With the current crop born from polluted wombs, it’s an even uglier display of body, speech and mind.
    Don’t believe it?
    Taker a closer look at what you’re looking at. . .

  7. VietnamVet

    The Five-eyes Oceanic Empire is dying before our eyes. UK, Canada, Australia, and the USA (let alone New Zealand) simply do not have armament or manpower to occupy Yemen to push the Houthi back far enough from the Gate of Grief at the mouth of the Red Sea to reopen the Suez Canal to western shipping. A global logistic choke point has closed. The second, the Panama Canal, is limiting ships due to the drought. Thanks to the endless wars and climate change shipping to and from the Persian Gulf and Asia bound to Europe and the East Coast of North and South America and back will either have to go around Cape of Good Hope, Africa or trans-ship over Ferrocarril de Panamá. Inflation and further shortages are a given.

    Europe and the Americas must live within its means or revolts of 1776, 1789, 1821 and 1917 will be replayed just as WWI goes forward in Ukraine limited so far by Mutually Assured Destruction (MAD). With the Gaza escalation, the two regional wars have started WW3.

    The whole point of the Oligarchs’ Reagan-Thatcher counter-revolt that imposed Shock Treatment on Yeltsin’s Russia in the 1990s and subsequently the whole world was to allow the wealthy to get richer through exploitation of the earth and its inhabitants despite resource depletion, pollution, and overpopulation. To get a cut from the neo-liberal bounty, the plutocrats’ retainers and hanger-ons must believe the propaganda; the amoral “Greed is good.”

    Secretary of Defense Lloyd Austin just might have realized reality with his prostate cancer diagnosis and re-admittance to Walter Reed National Military Medical Center that the American healthcare system simply doesn’t give a damn about his prognosis only corporate profits. The world is on the brink of Israel choosing to ignite the Sampson Option that will fulfill the Abrahamic Religions’ End of Days Prophecy Option or a mistake that the Soviet Union and the NATO avoided in the first Cold War.

  8. bruce wilder

    I congratulate the French on overcoming gerontocracy even if they have only exchanged old, ignorant fools for young, ignorant fools.

    Still, I am amazed at how dumb “elite” human beings are — the leadership of Western Europe are amazingly ignorant of the geopolitics of their own economic foundations. The only exception might be Orban and they hate him for knowing the most basic economic dependencies of his own country.

    If you pay any attention to what Putin’s says, you know that he talks frequently and knowledgeably about Russia’s economic challenges and opportunities. He pays attention to the mechanics of the vehicle of state he drives.

    In the meantime, the West “fights” for control of “the narrative” with only a vague notion that some reality underlies any of it.

  9. Curt Kastens

    I do not know if the following link proves that the COVID Pandemic was premeditated.
    I have concluded that the COVID Pandemic was premeditated for completely different reasons which I have written about in the past on this site.
    But I post this link because it might be an entirely new set of reasons proving that the Pandemic was premeditated. Unfortunately I lack the background to know whehter or not the evidence that this person points to proves anything at all because I lack the background to offer potentially alternative explinations.

  10. Curt Kastens

    One thing that I forgot to mention is that if the the timeline in the above link is accurate. And if the timeline actually is highly unorthodox, this timeline implies an international coordination among people in societies that are on adversarial terms with one another.
    I find that aspect of the case very hard to swallow.
    This international coordintation implies that either the Intel/Security agencies of these competing countries collaborated on this project. Or, that there was rougue international coordination that pulled the wool over the eyes of at least some of the world’s major Intel/Securtiy agencies. If that would have been the case I guess an obvious question would be, how did they manage to do that. And additionally why did they do it.

  11. someofparts

    testing to see if I can post

  12. someofparts

    Thinking about Ian’s recent post about levels of morality between psychopaths and saints I clearly belong in the middle of that scale. Love my cat who is a very good looking mammal, but get so homicidal at the sight of a palmetto bug (giant cockroach) that I could qualify for Israeli citizenship.

  13. Allison

    This international coordintation implies that either the Intel/Security agencies of these competing countries collaborated on this project. Or, that there was rougue international coordination that pulled the wool over the eyes of at least some of the world’s major Intel/Securtiy agencies.

    This is why JFK was using alternate channels to communicate with the CIA. He correctly didn’t trust the Zionized Jesus-Angleton at all and wanted to smash the entire “intel” edifice to pieces. This obviously didn’t mean he didn’t want “intel” – a better word might simply be information – but he didn’t trust the entrenched agency which at that time wasn’t nearly as entrenched as it is now – though Kennedy saw where it was headed.

    Yes, Kurt Castens, there is coordination at higher levels. There is intel within intel within intel.

    Never forget that Julian Assange was introduced to the world via a glowing writeup in The Guardian and Mr “Citizen’s Journalist” immediately began showing up at “public” appearances in thousand dollar digs. He was questioned about the 9/11 deep state/intel event and he immediately referred to people who don’t believe the official story as being into “conspiracies” and wondered aloud why they all didn’t pay more attention to his own “wikileaks” which he said publishes the “true” conspiracies. In fact, John Young at Cryptome said that wikileaks publishes nothing that isn’t already known anyway.

    Of course, Assange should be out of jail. But he’s not who people think he is.

  14. bruce wilder

    I cannot reject the hypothesis that COVID-19 is someone’s policy response to global resource limits being breached by overpopulation. It does not have to be a “conspiracy of lies” at the “highest levels of state”.

    The technology of molecular biology puts enormous power into the hands of mere technicians. It does not require Manhattan Project levels of centralized resource mobilization or coordination. The necessary infrastructure is in place and prerequisite knowledge is esoteric but widely dispersed, some of the difficult techniques and math already embodied in machines and algorithms that are deployed as fancy gadjets available to those in the right labs.

    You can see the hazards of hierarchical decision-making in many other spheres: someone at the top merely has to fail to anticipate or appreciate consequences and possibilities while enabling someone much further down the pecking order to FA&FO. No individual has to be deliberate, but someone without much scope or authority or fame can choose (or simply amplify a “mistake”).

    That the Media pundits and talking heads and spokesmodel politicians are in denial . . . always . . . is just who they are, part of their general incompetence pattern.

    Historically, the

  15. StewartM

    Bruce Wilder

    I cannot reject the hypothesis that COVID-19 is someone’s policy response to global resource limits being breached by overpopulation.

    Only if said person/people are incredibly ignorant of the way that pathogens act, and evolve. The people smart enough to create such a pathogen are also smart enough to know that this genie won’t stay in the lamp and thus will become a threat to them, too, and personally at that.

    By contrast, the “useless rich” John Galts who actually might want such a thing, are too ignorant on how to create one. Just like they’re pretty much ignorant and incapable of creating/inventing or actually just maintaining or doing pretty much anything.

    So I call this hypothesis “pretty much busted”

  16. StewartM

    Bruce Wilder

    I congratulate the French on overcoming gerontocracy even if they have only exchanged old, ignorant fools for young, ignorant fools.

    OTH, the old, ignorant fools are probably less capable of doing harm. Nothing is as dangerous as a stupid person with a lot of ambition and energy!

    (I have seen this at my job, and let me tell you, that “stupid and passive” is much better than “stupid and energetic”.)

  17. Ian Welsh

    Yeah, people would track how many days George Bush or Biden or Trump took off, and I’d be “good, let them take their entire term off.”

  18. bruce wilder


    I do not presume to know as much about biology as you imagine you do. If COVID-19 was a product of gain-of-function research, released accidentally or purposely, it does seem remarkably well-equipped to prepare human populations for a succession of pandemics and to gradually destroy immune systems. Maybe our putative researcher, Gavrilo Princip with a test tube, believed in the efficacy of quarantine or simply did not care about personal consequences. Or, consider that Dr Frankenstein was killed by his Monster.

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