The Near-Global Collapse of Critical Thinking

Uncle Volodya says, “When an honest man speaks, he says only what he believes to be true; and for the liar, it is correspondingly indispensable that he considers his statements to be false. For the bullshitter, however, all these bets are off: he is neither on the side of the true nor on the side of the false.”

“Every ounce of my cynicism is supported by historical precedent.”

– Glen Cook, Shadow Games

“The power of accurate observation is commonly called cynicism by those who haven’t got it.”

– George Bernard Shaw

I’m lazy. But vanity constrains me from admitting that, so I call it ‘busy’. However I choose to label it, I haven’t written anything new in a long time. It’s not writer’s block, because I had a couple of topics in mind; if I had to blame it on anything, I’d blame it on the comments section. We don’t really have any rules here, or not many (there are a couple of people who can’t comment, but that’s because they cannot be trusted to not instantly return to old habits as soon as they are allowed), and things routinely drift off-topic to whatever is going on at the time. Current events; yes, that’s the term I was looking for. So when new things are happening, we tend to discuss them in the comments section, instead of my writing a new post dedicated specifically to that issue. It’s the primary cause, I’m afraid, of important comments you would like to be able to locate because they contain hard-to-find sources or just the information you need to settle an argument, because they are not linked by subject. Obviously I prefer the unregulated format, or I wouldn’t use it, but it does have its disadvantages.

Anyway, the silver lining that comes with being late to discuss a particular current event is that you get to talk about the filtered version, after the ferment has settled down and often new facts have presented. So it is with the teapot tempest of Alexei Navalny, vaulted to international fame virtually overnight by becoming the latest victim poisoned by nefarious Soviet-era deadly nerve agents that, in their known application, have a success rate of 16.67%. A funny statistic has emerged from the absurd times we are living in – a viral infection, the ‘novel coronavirus’, more commonly called COVID-19, has the world shivering with terror like frogs in a glass cage with a big snake, even though its Infection Fatality Rate (IFR) compares with the annual influenza bouts we have lived with all our years. Yet an engineered nerve agent reputed to be ten times as deadly as the most toxic poison the west could come up with – one which, I might add, has a known survivor list among the exposed of zero point zero – has never killed the individual it was intended to kill, and managed to incidentally slay one innocent bystander who was also an alcoholic and drug abuser. As John Lennon remarked in “Nobody Told Me”; strange days indeed. Most peculiar, Mama.

I meant to do a post on Navalny – more correctly, my patience with the ridiculous statements made about his latest adventure finally evaporated – after reading this amazingly cheeky tapestry of fabrication; “The Kremlin, predictably, says it didn’t poison Alexey Navalny. So what can the West do?”

I looked it up so as to have an electronic link, so readers could get the full effect. But I initially saw it in the newspaper, the Canadian Globe & Mail (British Columbia edition), in which it was headlined a little differently – “Why nobody has power to make Kremlin come clean on poisoning”. So far as I can make out on initial examination, the body of the article is unchanged. Both pieces – well, the same piece with two different headlines – are by Mark MacKinnon, who is The Globe & Mail‘s senior international correspondent, based in London, UK. He’s quite highly-regarded by his employers, is a seven-time winner of the National Newspaper Awards (for creativity, perhaps, although they don’t say), and the author of…”The New Cold War: Revolutions, Rigged Elections and Pipeline Politics“. Gee, that sounds like it might be about a particular country; let’s have a dekko at the writeup.

“When the Berlin Wall fell in 1989 and the Soviet Union collapsed two years later, liberal democracy was supposed to fill the void left by Soviet Communism. Poland and Czechoslovakia made the best of reforms, but the citizens of the “Evil Empire” itself saw little of the promised freedom, and more of the same old despots and corruption. Recently, a second wave of reforms — Serbia in 2000, Georgia in 2003, and Ukraine in 2004, as well as Kyrgyzstan’s regime change in 2005 — have proven almost as monumental as those in Berlin and Moscow. The people of the Eastern bloc, aided in no small part by Western money and advice, are again rising up and demanding an end to autocracy. And once more, the Kremlin is battling the White House every step of the way. Mark MacKinnon spent these years working in Moscow, and his view of the story and access to those involved remains unparalleled. With The New Cold War, he reveals the links between these democratic revolutions — and George Soros, the idealistic American billionaire behind them — in a major investigation into the forces that are quietly reshaping the post-Soviet world.”

Because western-imposed liberal democracy has been such a star-speckled success in so many places – Libya. Iraq, Venezuela…anyway, the above author information is offered to sort of set the tone for the type of worldview you might expect. And to introduce a premonition, before you even read his material, that Mark MacKinnon just might be exactly the sort of guy who would smirk with revulsion at the mention of Putin’s name, and have a big ol’ man-crush on Alexei Navalny. I’m not implying anything untoward, here; Mr. MacKinnon is a realist. An ideologue, yes, but a realist.

And as with others of his ideological type, I marvel that he apparently sees some sort of inspirational leader in Navalny. I’m cautiously optimistic, of course, because until international busybodies have a vote in Russian elections – as they have in other places, except it’s called ‘regime change’ – there is about as much chance of Alexei Navalny being elected to a position of influence by a broad Russian vote as there is of you dying from coronavirus. Which you have about a 99.6% chance of surviving, if you should get it. Anyway, I’m optimistic, as I have suggested many times before, because for so long as western liberal meddlers choose to put all their eggs in the Navalny basket, for that long leaders elected by Russian votes will rule more or less unmolested. You could as likely persuade Russians to dress up as Obama on Hallowe’en (well, first you would have to persuade them to celebrate it, which The Moscow Times almost reduced itself to tears trying to bring about) as you could to persuade them to vote for Navalny. And this latest escapade, which – perversely – has put him in the western hall of political fame has probably actually cost him votes in Russia, which is remarkable considering he already was about as popular as vomit air-freshener.

Mr. MacKinnon starts off his excoriation of the Kremlin, and his apparent poignant appeal for someone to rid us of this troublesome autocratic dictator, with some lighthearted snark about how predictable it is that the Kremlin would deny poisoning Alexei Navalny. Uh huh; of course they would. Real men would immediately own up – yeah, I poisoned that motherfucker. Teach him to talk smack about me. What are you gonna do about it? You might be repulsed by the implicit evil there, but at least you could respect Putin for telling the truth.

Let’s look at it a little differently. Suppose I said “Mark MacKinnon is a wife-beater”. For the record, I don’t even know if he is married. Or straight. But that’s beside the point, which is that to the best of my knowledge, it is not true. Doesn’t matter. Predictably, he would deny it. Now suppose I repeated that allegation regularly for twenty years. Might I be able to say, wearily, “the only predictable thing about MacKinnon’s latest wife-beating incident is his denial of having had anything to do with it”? I think I could. But denying it is exactly the predictable occurrence if he had not done it.

How about we take a quick recap of some of the things Russia has been accused of just in the last few years. A state-sponsored doping program for its Olympic athletes, in which they were fed performance-enhancing cocktails that powered them all the way to the podium. The special investigatory body put together to look into it, headed by Canadian Richard McLaren, claimed there was so much proof that it was embarrassing. When we got down to where the rubber meets the road, said investigatory body could not prove fuck-all, their star witness fell apart in testimony, and 28 Russian athletes had their Olympic bans reversed while 7 medals were reinstated. The Nation recapped it thus;

“How the Times could provide such minimal coverage of these important April 2018 reasoned CAS decisions on matters on which the Times had extensively reported is inexplicable. By allowing the Russian athletes, for the very first time, to confront their accusers with cross-examination, the CAS was in a position to make startling revelations about Rodchenkov and McLaren. Rodchenkov, for example, admitted that he never personally witnessed any accused Russian athlete committing doping violations themselves, including taking the illegal drug cocktail, giving a clean urine sample out of competition, tampering with a urine sample, or transmitting information to co-conspirators about the coding on the drug sample after it had been given.

Furthermore, several of Rodchenkov’s explanations of events were simply not believable. For example, Rodchenkov had stated that the swapping of urine samples occurred after 1 am, but his own diary entries confirmed his bedtime by midnight each night, with two or three exceptions. When confronted with this contradiction, he made the incredible claim that he had lied to his diary.”

Were the Russians guilty? Apparently not. What is the appropriate response when you are accused of something but did not do it? Denial? Damn straight. But there’s another key takeaway in there – the testimonial hearing in which the athletes and their representatives dismantled Rodchenkov’s self-important blathering was the very first time they had been able to confront their accuser. Uncorroborated denials are easy to brush off, which would seem to summarize Mr, MacKinnon’s style.

One more. Russia was accused by the United States – whose allies quickly picked it up as one more example of the reprehensible Russian conduct that just makes you shake your head in helpless wonder – of paying the Taliban in Afghanistan a bounty to kill American soldiers.

For starters, it would not be difficult to imagine the US Army as being so loathed in Afghanistan – considering American military operations have devastated the country for 19 years now – that jihadis in Afghanistan would be happy to kill them for free; might even pay for the opportunity, if they had any money. Some might say well, if not for the democracy-promotion efforts of America, the Taliban might still be in charge! Yeah, ha, ha; funny story about that. President Trump announced this past Spring that it was time to turn over law and order in Afghanistan to…the Taliban.

He said US troops had been killing terrorists in Afghanistan “by the thousands” and now it was “time for someone else to do that work and it will be the Taliban and it could be surrounding countries”.

Personally, I think it’s a hell of a cheek of the Taliban to accept money from the Russians to kill Americans who just cut them such an exceptional deal – you would think they would be so happy that they would dance into the streets with their arms full of flowers and candy. Oh, wait – different democracy-promotion operation.

And I’d just like to point out to anyone who is forming the opinion that I am a sarcastic prick that the main piece of ‘evidence’ on which the Americans based the assessment that a mysterious Russian GRU (military intelligence) unit was paying bounties to the Taliban to kill American soldiers was the discovery of ‘a large amount of American cash from a raid on a Taliban outpost’.

Jesus, God of our fathers – please tell me they had more than that. Quite apart from the patent rudeness of carrying out a raid on the ‘outposts’ of your new Afghanistan caretakers, the US dollar is the most common and widely-circulated currency in the world. Instead of leaping to the conclusion that it had to have come from the Russians – whose currency was still the ruble the last time I looked – why was the King Arthur Flour Company not immediately a suspect? After all, sourdough baking has lunged to a quivering peak during ‘COVID times’ (as I heard one imbecile describe the  peyote cartoon we are all living); King Arthur offers a very popular sourdough starter, and the Afghans are great bakers. Maybe they were saving up to buy a couple of truckloads, give the people something to raise their morale! Get it? ‘Raise’ their morale? It’s not funny if I have to explain it. But it makes as much sense as assuming the Russians want to accelerate the killing of American forces just as they are arranging terms for a pullout, which would surely make them stay longer.

Well, let’s get back to Mr. MacKinnon’s story, before we wander too far off the path. But I hope that addresses the issue of the Kremlin denying western accusations. Deny is what you do when you really had nothing to do with whatever it was you are being accused of, instead of ‘manning up’ and saying “Yeah; it was me”. Gaddafi did that, in the hope of making peace with the Americans, and look where it got him. And America is not put off by lack of evidence – obviously.

So we’re back where Russia might be believed today, if the past 20 years had never happened. At that, I would suggest he’s casting too wide a net; the USA and Russia were getting along fairly well between the time the Harvard Boys were invited in to remake Russia in 1991, and the presidential candidacy of American Idiot and Venture Capitalist Mitt Romney, during which candidacy he identified Russia – for no apparent reason than that it sometimes caused headaches for the United States at the UN – as the USA’s Number One Geopolitical Enemy. That was in 2012, which was only 8 years ago, and in fact the great majority of western accusations against Russia have taken place since 2014 and the US State Department’s successful second run at taking over Ukraine to Make It Safe For Democracy. It’s pretty hard to restore your ‘credibility’ when the international press whose language is foreign to your own continues to insist it has mountains of evidence that you are lying, but cannot reveal any of it because of national security. On the occasions it does publish some of its substantiation, the alternate-narrative element of the public is so scathing in its scorn – as happened when the British tried going public with their Skripals Case – that the storytellers are sent back to the drawing-board to make up something different. Otherwise they might have to explain why a poison so virulent that Sergei Skripal’s house had to have its roof removed because Novichok was daubed on the front doorknob, but the same poison failed to kill not only the Skripals times two, Detective Nick Bailey, Charles Rowley and now Navalny. The Skripals came into direct contact with it while the family’s roof did not, unless they had a sixteen-foot diameter doorknob, and Navalny actually drank it. So the story goes. I don’t think ‘absurd’ is too strong a word.

Russia, we hear, denied that its soldiers were in Crimea before Russia ‘annexed’ the territory in 2014. Where? Russia was permitted by international agreement to base sufficient forces at Sevastopol to easily take the region away from a Ukrainian Army so useless that initial attempts to stop the unraveling were made by civilian militias. Oh, and my favourite; Russia denied shooting down MH-17 “even after the anti-aircraft system involved in the attack was detected leaving Russia then returning short one missile.” Is that a fact? Well, no; it’s not. That accusation was made by Bellingcat, the brain trust of former underwear-company accountant Eliot Higgins, and there was never any ‘detection’ of any such anti-air system “leaving Russia and returning short one missile”. Bellingcat offered a potential route such a system might have taken to and from a launch site, in an animation, which was itself never substantiated by evidence – a route which took the system many vulnerable kilometers out of its way on the alleged return – and the photograph that made the cover of Paris Match is so obviously a Photoshop mosaic. And the inclusion of Ukraine, who was automatically a suspect considering the incident occurred in Ukrainian airspace, in the investigation to establish Russian guilt, together with its unsupervised access to the collected evidence, renders the whole issue farcical.

“And on it went. The official RIA Novosti newswire quoted chemical-weapon experts who said that had Novichok been used, Mr. Navalny would already be dead. It’s a line Russian state media have used before, after Mr. Skripal and his daughter survived the 2018 attack, but one they dropped after 44-year-old Dawn Sturgess died after coming into contact with an unused vial of Novichok in a Salisbury park three months later.”

Is that what happened, Mr. seven-times-recipient-of-the-National-Newspapers-Award? Dawn Sturgess was given the perfume bottle as a gift from her boyfriend, Charles Rowley, at his home in Amesbury, 8 miles from Salisbury. She allegedly ‘immediately sprayed some on her wrists and rubbed them together’ according to Rowley.

“Charlie Rowley claimed his partner, mother-of-three Dawn Sturgess, fell ill within 15 minutes of spraying the bottle, which he said he had found, on to her wrists at his home in Amesbury, Wiltshire.”

Couldn’t ask for much more of an eyewitness than Rowley – he’s kind of at the center of the story, albeit he is a heroin addict himself, according to a previously-cited reference. He claims that within 15 minutes she was stricken, claimed to have a headache, and disappeared to the bathroom, where he found her fully clothed and lying in the bath, ‘in a very ill state’.

Hand Mouse Cursor Clicks The Bullshit Button. Pointer Push Press.. Royalty Free Cliparts, Vectors, And Stock Illustration. Image 96927935.That’s funny; according to Sky News, she was not so ill that she could not admit herself to hospital, which she is alleged to have done at 11 AM on Saturday, after being poisoned with a nerve agent ten times as deadly as VX, exposure to which nobody has survived.

“During their trip to Salisbury on Friday, the pair visited a number of shops during the afternoon and evening with their friend Sam Hobson.

The following day, Ms Sturgess admitted herself to hospital at 11am. Mr Hobson, 29, and Mr Rowley went on to visit a number of places in the town centre.”

Mr. Rowley, the poor man who ‘lost so much’, was so affected by his beloved’s condition that he and his friend Sam Hobson went on – after she admitted herself to hospital – to see the sights of downtown Amesbury. We know they were in Amesbury because one of the locations they visited, Boots the Chemist in Amesbury, was soon thereafter closed by police as part of the investigation.

Perhaps they were looking around for the hospital. Because there isn’t one in Amesbury. The closest is in Salisbury, 8 miles away, and the next-closest is in Andover, even further. So the poor woman, having passed out in a very ill state after spraying a deadly nerve agent directly on her skin, somehow roused herself for the 8-mile drive to Salisbury and then proceeded with the admittance process, while the cretins in Emergency let the two who had dropped her off head back to Amesbury for some window-shopping. The alternative is that they were not even with her, and she drove herself. Say, do you know what one of the symptoms of nerve-agent poisoning is? Blurred vision due to excessive watering of the eyes.

The ‘only predictable part of the drama’, to borrow from Mr. MacKinnon’s introduction, is that Ms. Sturgess did not “die after coming into contact with an unused vial of Novichok in a Salisbury park”, or anything close to it. Sloppy, or loyal? Which is it?

Anyway, back to Navalny; for some reason I seem to be incapable of staying on his dramatic story. So, ‘predictably’, there are some pretty big holes in his story. For one, he was supposedly – initially – exposed to a near-unimaginably-toxic nerve agent which he drank in tea at the airport, prior to departure. Then the same Novichok which laid out Dawn Sturgess within 15 minutes did not affect Lyosha until 40 minutes after the plane took off. Team Navalny and its backers have attempted to explain that away by suggesting this was a specially-engineered ‘slow-acting’ Novichok.

What use would a slow-acting military-grade nerve agent be? Want to give the enemy a fair chance before killing him stone dead? And while we’re on the subject: note to the GRU, or the FSB or whoever – stop engineering Novichok to be slow-acting just to attack Navalny, and impervious to rain (like no other nerve agent ever, the immediate countermeasure is to flush the area with water and take atropine) to attack Sergei Skripal, and WORK ON MAKING IT KILL PEOPLE!!! Jesus Christ, do I have to think of everything myself?

So, obviously, the tea narrative was not going to work. Enter The Water Bottle Of Death. Allegedly, the GRU or FSB, or maybe Putin himself poisoned a water bottle and left it in Navalny’s hotel room in Tomsk, where there were always people in and out and they had no clue whether it would kill Navalny or someone else. Maybe that’s why they engineered it to be slow-acting and non-fatal. Then, after Navalny checked out and headed to the airport, where he hung around for at least long enough to drink a cup of tea before his flight was called, and then after takeoff and 40 minutes into the flight, suddenly, Lyosha is poisoned!! He begins to roar and scream with pain, and members of his entourage immediately go to get a lawyer to accompany them, and go to Navalny’s hotel, and – wonder of wonders – not only has it not been cleaned, it is still completely undisturbed!! Fucking hotel service in Tomsk, unbelievable, I hope they don’t pay them much.

So, what do we deduce from that? Not only did Navalny show no ill effects after being poisoned with a military-grade nerve agent for approximately an hour – rolling back the moment of his poisoning to his drinking tea in the airport before his flight was called – he survived it for significantly longer than that, because in the end the tea was just tea. He did not take the Water Bottle Of Death with him, instead leaving it in his hotel room, so he must have drunk from it before he left the room. How long was that? How far was his hotel from the airport? Well, let’s see – he stayed at the Xander (four stars, not too shabby), which is 24 km from the Bogashevo Airport. I feel safe in suggesting Navalny survived direct contact with a military-grade nerve agent for at least two hours before he even showed any symptoms, and perhaps for considerably longer than that. Which sounds quite a bit like the Skripal saga, in which they were poisoned by their front doorknob – the approximately sixteen-foot-diameter one which reaches to the roof, it’s a two-level home – but still managed to drive to the town center, feed the duckies in the park and then go on to a restaurant and finish dinner, before throwing a poison wobbler on a nearby bench outside. Where they happened to be discovered by the senior medical officer in the British Army. Quite by chance, she was just passing by.

So contact with the American VX agent means near-instantaneous death, but contact with a substance ten times more toxic means nothing at all for at least an hour and perhaps twice that, then an unpleasant bout of coma, then presto! 90% recovery of mental faculties – admittedly, not a high threshold for Navalny – and maybe 50% recovery of physical capability, with a cautiously-optimistic prognosis of a full recovery. Lawdy Jeebus; a miracle!

Back to MacKinnon’s story for a moment. “His transfer to Berlin’s specialist Charité hospital was delayed for 24 crucial hours while Russian officials floated wildly different versions of what might have happened to him.” Actually, they did no such thing; the doctors in Omsk are acknowledged to have probably saved his life, there actually was something wrong with him. They stabilized him for transport rather than immediately saying “Here you go, Krauts, it’s your show”, so his transfer was delayed for a not-at-all-excessive 24 hours, and it was the Germans who ‘floated wildly different versions of what might have happened to him’, initially claiming he had been poisoned with a cholinesterase inhibitor, and only changing the story to Novichok after the Water Bottle Of Death was delivered to Berlin by Navalny’s wife. And unless Lyosha had a water bottle secretly hidden on his person, they did not establish nerve-agent poisoning from his samples, either, unless the German doctors are incredibly incompetent. It would be pretty hard for a skilled medical technician to confuse a cholinesterase inhibitor with a nerve agent, and the doctors in Berlin initially had no clue what was wrong with him. They became confident after the water bottle was delivered.

Navalny’s aide is shown delivering his tea to him at the airport. No gloves, no Personal Protective Equipment whatsoever. But Lyosha was already crawling with Novicok – he must have been poisoned in his room. Was the hotel closed? The airport? Was the plane impounded and destroyed? Why is Navalny’s aide still alive, and not just waking up from a coma?

And now I am afraid I have some questions about Chain of Custody of important evidence in a criminal investigation. Because according to the timeline of the ‘Navalny poisoning’, Team Navalny back on the ground in Tomsk did not announce the discovery of a poisoned water bottle from his hotel room until September 17th – two days after the fact. Right up until then, Navalny’s ‘press agent’ stuck with the story that he was poisoned with tea at the airport. What kind of four-star hotel does not clean the room of a guest who has checked out for two days afterward? Alternatively, what kind of political team allows a narrative to persist that their leader was poisoned with tea at the airport for two whole days before they clue the world in that they have discovered important evidence to the contrary? So far as we know, nobody had analyzed the alleged traces on the bottle while it was still in Russia – the Germans allegedly established it was Novichok. Or else Team Navalny already knew, but didn’t bother to tell anyone, just assuming everyone who handled it would take deadly-nerve-agent precautions. Who else might have been inside that hotel room in two days? According to the NewsTimes, an Instagram post by Navalny claimed members of his ‘team’ tossed his hotel room looking for evidence only an hour after he collapsed, which is pretty impressive considering they had no real reason at that point to suspect a crime had been committed; he probably had just reached the hospital in Omsk by that point, if even that, and there had been no announcement as to his condition, But they waited until September 17th to announce they had discovered a bottle contaminated with Novichok? nearly a month later? Excuse me – some state-sponsored nerve agent – the bottle had not been tested yet.

According to the certifiable inbreeders in the European Parliament, Novichok and its family of poisons can only be made in state-owned military laboratories, and there is no way civilians could have gotten hold of it.

“MEPs have called for sanctions against Russia, saying on September 17, “The poison used, belonging to the ‘Novichok group’, can only be developed in state-owned military laboratories and cannot be acquired by private individuals, which strongly implies that Russian authorities were behind the attack.”

Huh. That’s odd. Because Alistair Hay – a toxicologist at the University of Leeds, a leading expert in the toxic properties of chemical warfare agents and a member of the British government’s advisory group on chemical warfare – assessed that it could be made by “any competent chemist”. I’m pretty sure they’re not all in the military, and obviously they do not need to be Russian. The principal developmental engineer of Novichok, Vil Marzayanov, published a book which contained the formula, and which sells on Amazon for less than 30 bucks. But what does Hay know, right?

“The Kremlin’s latest denials should and will fall flat with Western governments. It was already clear that Mr. Putin’s inner circle had ample reasons to wish Mr. Navalny harm. (The Kremlin’s feelings about the anti-corruption campaigner have long been obvious. Mr. Putin has repeatedly refused to use Mr. Navalny’s name, even when asked direct questions about him. On Thursday, Mr. Peskov continued that practice, referring only to “the Berlin patient.”)

Ha, ha!! Oh, my God. It is clear that the Kremlin has ample reasons to wish Mr. Navalny harm, because they don’t talk about him. If I hadn’t seen it with my own eyes, I wouldn’t have believed it. That’s some award-winning journalism right there.

I think we’re done here; what is supposed to be a straightforward tale of the unrepentant state poisoning of a political opponent is in fact so confusing and contradictory that I cannot make any sense of it. I suspect even closer examination of it is only going to reveal further inconsistencies.

“The notion of carefully wrought bullshit involves, then, a certain inner strain. Thoughtful attention to detail requires discipline and objectivity. It entails accepting standards and limitations that forbid the indulgence of impulse or whim. It is this selflessness that, in connection with bullshit, strikes us as inapposite. But in fact it is not out of the question at all. The realms of advertising and of public relations, and the nowadays closely related realm of politics, are replete with instances of bullshit so unmitigated that they can serve among the most indisputable and classic paradigms of the concept. And in these realms there are exquisitely sophisticated craftsmen who – with the help of advanced and demanding techniques of market research, of public opinion polling, of psychological testing, and so forth – dedicate themselves tirelessly to getting every word and image they produce exactly right.”

Harry G. Frankfurt, from “On Bullshit“.

How many of you would describe the western media as “exquisitely sophisticated craftsmen who dedicate themselves tirelessly to getting every word and image they produce exactly right”? Count me out. They’re not even good at it. Fortunately for them, critical thinking is at an all-time low.


1,428 thoughts on “The Near-Global Collapse of Critical Thinking

    1. …Source – Telegram channel ‘Horde’: “When thirty years ago they took as much independence as the alconaut Boris Nikolayevich [Yeltsin] was happy to spare..

      Alc(h)onaut. That is genius!

      RF attitude was seen as far back as 2014 in the Ukraine. That I think is the straw that broke the proverbial camel’s back, though I expect sentiment was heading that way already. Neighbor fatigue.

      Abroad, 2015 Syria showed the RF would help if you would help yourself.

      The fundamentals of all this is that Russia shares a border. For all the huff, puff and promises of the west’s greatest marketers of democracy and Free-dumb, geography doesn’t change. Sakaashiti learned this the hard way. He was hung out to dry by his allies because he was too small and too far away. A mere plaything to poke The Russians (TM).

      Russia has show that if their neighbors aren’t dicks, they are more than happy to trade and leave them alone. The moment they start enacting foreign ‘suggestions’ that are designed to rub Russia up the wrong way, then there is really no empathy or sympathy politically or economically. You’ve dug your own hole. Fill it in yourself, apologize and make amends.

      As I recently wrote, ‘not playing the game’ is a viable option, and it is probably the best way of inflicting the least damage to yourself. It’s hard to prove a negative but it is it is the result (at limited cost to oneself) that counts.

      BTW, has anyone read Killary’s recent screed about rebuilding America? She’s copying Putin/Medvyedev! Streamlining the military. Check! Reindustrialization. Check! Supporting innovation? Check! Ok, I only read the first bit as a I assume the rest rest is b/s and huge puff, cake ‘n’ eat it stuff. She even mentions Eisenhower (limited foreign goals. Check)! All too little and too late, and if she was SecDef or whatever it would depend on all the other slef-serving as*holes in the adminstration:


  1. From a Russian blogger who is obviously not a rubberduckian:

    Зрада* для Навального от Соболь
    2 days ago

    A victory for Navalny from Sobol

    I cannot number the “pious” impulses and hidden talents of our domestic liberals. They see everything, have time to busy themselves everywhere, their “talent” is revealed to all, and they fight for everything good against everything bad, always ready to give you advice, whether you need it or not.

    Whilst the rubber duck leader is licking his wounds in Germany, giving out interviews, revealing a plot against himself and denouncing his right (or maybe left) hand (or maybe not his hand), Lyubov Sobol, in the absence of her boss, has decided to prove herself in the field of animal protection. She has stated that all circuses with animals should be banned.

    [She writes above on Twitter: “All circuses with animals should be banned” in response to an Interfax report that the circus on Vernadsky Avenue had announced that an employee killed there by a bear had been responsible for his own death.]

    This reaction was caused by an incident at the circus on Vernadsky Avenue, where a circus employee had died by a the bear’s paws.

    The Big Moscow State Circus reported that an employee had died on October 5. He had made an unauthorized decision to enter the enclosure for an adult bear, thus violating the safety rules, which is confirmed by video camera footage and witnesses.

    The actions of the deceased circus worker actually look like suicidal ones: for no apparent reason, the worker went into the cage on the day off for the artists and closed it from the inside with two locks. In other words, it turns out that the worker cut his own life short by his own actions. However, according to Sobol, the circus is to blame. So let us accept that the circus is to blame. So who then is to blame for the death of the animals in the photographs below?

    I take it that these photos, which Navalny himself posted on the Internet, express his position on animal protection.

    Well, what do you say, Lyuba? Is this a “victory” [zrada] for your boss, or do you not share your boss’s views as regards this matter? If so, I am very much looking forward to your fiery criticism of the rubber duck leader as regards his position on animal protection.

    Thank you for reading and evaluating this article, and special thanks for your subscription.

    *”Zrada” and also its opposite “Peremoga” (in Ukrainian – “victory” and “betrayal, treason”) — a couple of lexemes of socio-political discourse, Ukrainisms that are now well-established Russian Internet memes, by which the meanings of the words — especially in the context of social struggle, such as “The Revolution of Dignity”, whence came these Internet memes — can change to the opposite.


    1. I agree that the holding of animals in captivity for human amusement should be discontinued, although this is an absurd event upon which to base such a position as the employee disregarded the safety rules designed to prevent people from coming in direct contact with a large and powerful animal. Parks, maybe, are an option for people to get an idea of the real size and appearance of something like a bear, but video is a realistic alternative to keeping wild animals caged up.

      Sobol is just like all the charter members of Team Navalny, mostly interested in taking a position on every public issue before anyone else can, so as to look statesmanlike. Now if the Russian government also espouses a similar position, it is ‘only copying Sobol’, or Navalny or whoever. If it takes no position, it doesn’t care about the issue. Cheap theatre, with no risks for politicians.


  2. США возложили вину за бомбардировку Хиросимы и Нагасаки на СССР
    09:21 / 13.10.2020

    The USA blames the USSR for the bombing of Hiroshima and Nagasaki

    Russia has been blamed for the nuclear bombing of Japan, ToDay News Ufa reports. The West has laid the blame again for the bombing of Hiroshima and Nagasaki on the USSR. In addition, according to some historians, it was the nuclear attack against the Land of the Rising Sun that explains the rapid success of Soviet troops in the outcome of the events of August 1945. In Russia, these claims are called a grand falsification of the role of the Soviet Union in World War II. The head of the Scientific and Methodological Department of the Victory Museum in Moscow, Professor Stanislav Davydov, in particular accuses historiographers from the U.S. of doing this. According to the scientist, it is only thanks to the influence of the West that many Japanese schoolchildren believe that the nuclear strikes on Hiroshima and Nagasaki were carried out not by the American but by the Soviet military. Davydov also noted that American historians insist that it would have take from one and a half to two years for the USA to fully achieve victory, whilst the USSR forced Japan to surrender in 11 days and did this thanks to the bomb strikes.

    Запад возложил вину за бомбардировку Хиросимы и Нагасаки на СССР
    13 октября 2020

    The West has laid the blame for bombing Hiroshima and Nagasaki on the USSR
    13 October 2020

    American historians have made the Japanese think that the Soviet Union used nuclear weapons against Hiroshima and Nagasaki, news and information portal EVO-RUS.COM reports.

    At the same time, it is known that it was the US military that launched nuclear strikes on these Japanese cities. Professor Stanislav Davydov blamed western historians for falsifying information about the USSR’s role in World War II.

    He noted that Western historians by their actions made most Japanese schoolchildren think that the Soviet Union was involved in the nuclear strikes on Hiroshima and Nagasaki.

    Davydov added that historians in the USA link the rapid surrender of Japan to the Soviet bomb strikes, assuring that it would take 1.5-2 years for Washington to fully win.



  3. 08 окт, 12:15 19 710
    Евгения Васильева стала почетным академиком Российской академии художеств

    Remember her above?

    The linked RBK headline above reads:

    Oct 08, 12:15 19 710
    Evgenia Vasilieva has become an honourary academician of the Russian Academy of Arts

    Serdyukov’s former floozy, whose de-luxe apartment, where she suffered house-arrest and which is situated in the most expensive district of Moscow, was revealed to have been choc-a-bloc with assorted gems and baubles and works of art. A true kreakl!

    I never done nothing wrong Vasilieva in dock.


  4. Russia’s Strategic Intervention in Syria Five Years On – An ‘Unpardonable Blow’ to U.S. Empire

    October 9, 2020

    Five years ago this month, Russia began conducting fateful military operations in Syria at the request of the government in Damascus. It was a momentous “turning point,” as noted by Syria’s President Assad this week, whose nation is slowly rising from the ashes of war.

    More than salvaging Syria from a nearly decade-long war – vitally important though that was – Russia’s pivotal intervention also marked the strategic setback for a Western-backed campaign of regime change and wanton illegal war-making across the Middle East and North Africa….


  5. The Barbarians Are Threatening Us!

    …Russia is de-coupling from Europe, because it no longer trusts Europe. A huge shift. Seventy-five years after the end of WW2, German militarism and nationalism is stirring — and its élites are once again targeting Russia: “Berlin is ending the era launched by Gorbachev of a trusting and friendly relationship with Moscow. Russia, for its part, no longer expects anything from Germany, and therefore does not feel obliged to take into account its opinion or interests”, says the respected Moscow-based Carnegie bureau chief, Dmitri Trenin….

    Not that I’m one to quote Trenin, but there is a grain of truth in there but not much more. A very simplified way of seeing things. Rather Russia is no longer waiting, providing latitude for ‘domestic events’ nor expecting anything from u-Rope. But, Russia is always willing to talk, but only if the other side is being sensible.

    With u-Ropean trouble t’mill, it’s much easier to create a distractive bogeyman in Russia and publicly beating it as they cannot face the other options on which there is no unity.

    Maybe Berlin saw it had two choices, a) cancel NordStream II and be ultimately responsible in law etc. for all the consequences; b) go along with ‘targeted sanctions’ and keep NSII. Ride it ou. There has been a massive campaign to kill NSII and it has been ramped up in this US election year, not to mention it has support from inside the EU, so the calculation may well have been made to chose ‘the lesser of two evils.’ Notice that Merkel has mostly kept out of it, rather those jockying for postion as her replacement have been the ones harping loudly. Or providing themselves with political rope…

    Russia will continue to develop itself as it has been doing with its economic and political shift to the east which was started years before the current sanctions regime and this has only accelerated these plans. Russia has shown significant manegerial skill, though speed can be the enemy of efficiency and the friend of corruption (Vostochny space center development etc.). Some talk, others do. It’s not hard to see which do what.


    1. 13 октября 2020, 18:14
      Лавров допустил прекращение диалога России с ЕС
      13 October 2020, 18:14 Politics

      Lavrov has considered ending dialogue between Russia and the EU
      Moscow will have to take such a step if the EU does not understand the need for a mutually respectful conversation

      Russian Foreign Minister Sergei Lavrov said that Moscow could end dialogue with the European Union if the West does not understand the need for a mutually respectful discourse. The minister said this during the presentation of a report of the Valdai Discussion Club.

      Lavrov stressed that Russia has always had a sense of self respect.

      “Those people who are responsible for foreign policy in the West do not understand the need for mutually respectful conversation. Perhaps we should just stop communicating with them for a while”, the minister said.

      Lavrov recalled that according to the head of the European Commission, Ursula von der Leyen, “geopolitical partnership with the current Russian government is not working”.

      “So be it if that is what they want”, he said.

      The Foreign Minister added that he would not go into details about how “the EU is completely inappropriate, behaving unacceptably as regards the Navalny incident”.


      1. More publicity for Lyosha – how could he not get a swelled head when he might be responsible for a complete breakdown of dialogue between Europe and Russia? Think how richly Uncle Sam will reward him for such great work! The Presidential Medal of Freedom will just be a beginning!

        Well, every cloud has a silver lining, they say – look how great international relations are going with a woman in charge. I wonder what took so long.


    2. I can only repeat that Yurrup will be oh, so sorry if the Nord Stream II project is canceled. Russia is under no obligation to renew its transit contract with Ukraine and I doubt it would let itself be bullied into a new long-term agreement. Although Europe would go short for gas, the price would rise sharply and help offset losses to Russia, as other pipelines would be going flat-out. The prices for American LN G would be high, or else America couldn’t make money, but Wasg0hington would straightaway begin leveraging its supplier status to influence European politics for favourable outcomes for the USA. Even if Russia cooperated and agreed to transit gas across Ukraine, that pipeline system is on its last legs, and has probably deteriorated to the point the only option left is replacement.


  6. MK

    Навального могли отравить через шприц, не оставляющий следов. Такие делают в фирме отца Марии Певчих
    Этот укол не вызывает боли — он незаметен для пациентов
    13 октября 2020 10:14

    Navalny could have been poisoned with a means of injection that leaves no trace. These are made in the firm of Maria Pevchikh’s father
    This means of injection does not cause pain and is indiscernible to patients

    13 October 2020 10:14

    The mystery surrounding the poisoning of blogger Alexei Navalny has not yet been solved. Maria Pevchikh, a previously secret FBK employee, whose name echos loudly throughout the case and who lives splendidly in Britain and, it turns out, who has always headed the investigation department at the Navalny Foundation. However, for some reason, almost nobody had ever heard of her before.

    Now it turns out that Maria’s father, Konstantin E. Pevchikh, is the owner of a company with the patented “system of intradermal vaccine delivery” SKINPORT. This system, as follows from the patent description, is a “disposable syringe attachment with an integrated hollow silicon micro-needle microstructure”, which “increases the productivity of the procedure and does not require the special skills of a medical worker”. The patent further states that “the effectiveness of using such technology for vaccination has been tested clinically”.

    The fact is that her father has developed a painless form of injection that leaves no trace and is invisible to the patient and which may be used by non-medics.

    “Pevchikh could not have helped but to have been involved”, TV presenter Vladimir Solovyov told KP. “Was there a poisoning or was there not a poisoning? What happened? Bu throughout the whole story, Pevchikh is simply not involved. And as far as I am aware, Pevchikh is also in hiding from the Russian investigation. And she does not want to answer any questions. But we understand that the person who pretends to be the secret head of the FBK investigation flies from London to Tomsk only to iron Navalny’s shirt. It turns out that this task was her responsibility. However, that is reason enough for her to have been on board an aeroplane flying to Germany. Allegedly, she was carrying evidence: a bottle. But notice how the object in question, this bottle, has now somehow gone off the radar, vanished, at least according to the Western media. So there are more questions than answers. And there are certainly a lot of questions for Pevchick to answer.

    Here’s Papa Pevchick’s SKINPORT site:



    1. So she has knowledge, means and motive…

      As for injectionless delivery, the idea has been around for a long time and there were others before, such as PowderJect.*

      There was a big of scandal too.** I don’t remember of hearing from them since, though I do remember reading something about firing tiny pellets through the skin as a means of delivery.

      PowderJect Pharmaceuticals was a British vaccine, drug and diagnostics delivery company founded by Brian Bellhouse.

      In 1993, PowderJect was spun out of the University of Oxford with the help of Isis Innovation.[1][2]

      In 2003, the company was taken over by the American Chiron Corporation for £542 million.[3][4] The company’s CEO was Paul Drayson, Baron Drayson, son-in-law of the founder, Brian Bellhouse, and they received £100 million following the takeover.[3][4] Drayson received £43m for his 8% holding, Bellhouse £19.5m for his 3.6% stake, and their family trusts received £41m.[4]



  7. 13 ОКТ, 15:18 Обновлено 15:56
    Юристы Пригожина начали подавать иски о защите чести к Навальному, Соболь и Волкову
    Как сообщили в компании “Конкорд”, поводом для обращений в суд являются публикации оскорбительных высказываний, которые содержат клевету

    13 OCT, 15:18 Updated 15:56
    Prigorzhina’s lawyers have started filing defamation claims against Navalny, Sobol and Volkov.
    As reported by the “Concord” company, the reason for appeals being made to the court is the publication of offensive statements that contain slander

    MOSCOW, October 13. /TASS/. Lawyers of the Russian businessman and head of the “Concord Company” Evgeniya Prigozhina have prepared and started filing claims against Alexey Navalny, Lyubov Sobol, Leonid Volkov, Maxim Shevchenko and Vladimir Milov for defamation in order to defend the honour and dignity of the businessman. This has been reported by the “Concorde” press service.

    “The ‘Concord’ press-service informs that Evgeny Prigozhin’s lawyers have prepared and already started filing claims on the protection of honour, dignity and business reputation to the following citizens: Alexey Navalny, Lyubov Sobol, Leonid Volkov, Maxim Shevchenko and Vladimir Milov”, the message specifies.

    It is noted that the reason for appeals to the court is the publication of insulting statements, which contain slander of Prigozhin.

    The “Concorde” press service added that the purpose of the trial was “to compel these citizens to respect the rights and legitimate interests of others”.

    In October 2019, the Arbitration Court of Moscow had already ordered that there be recovered from Navalny, the activist Lyubov Sobol and the “Foundation for the Fight against Corruption” (FBK) about 29 million rubles (a total of about 88 million) as compensation for moral damage as the result of a suit filed by company “Moskovsky Shkolnik”, and also ordered that a video defaming the business reputation of the company be removed. In August of this year, Prigorzhin purchased the debt of Navalny, Sobol and FBK to “Moskovsky Shkolnik”.

    Hoe does that grab you, smart arse liberasts?


  8. Love it!

    A Russian blogger writes:

    Оппозиционная крыса в умелых руках становится волком

    In skilful hands, an oppositionist rat has become a wolf

    The record about Navalny’s poisoning has been spinning for a month and a half. There has been so much material in the Russian media and in the international press during this time. Some just do not believe in this poisoning; others do not believe and cite facts as proof that this cannot have been so; and there are others who are outraged over the fact that it seems to have been forgotten how to poison someone. This whole story is like a low-grade comedy show, in which the directors of this production believe that those who are watching it are village idiots.

    At one time, Mikhail Zadornov [Russian satirist, now dead — ME] spoke about the stupidity of the Americans, and this stupidity has been passed on to their European puppets. Well, maybe it has, only the satirist did not speak of it. But in general, with whom do they wish to communicate? However, the way they have staged this whole comedy with Navalny shows that they consider us, the Russians, to be stupid.

    I am not going to go on here about all the twists and turns of this “cunning poisoning”: a lot has been said about this and I am already tired of it. I am interested in another question: Why has this anti-Russian rat, and that this is so, no longer raises any doubt, freely moved around our country, although he had a written undertaking not to leave? Why has this rat, Navalny, bred ratlings all over the country, without their having been an adequate reaction to this either from the country’s leadership or competent state bodies?

    If, as some say, Navalny did not pose any danger to the state, then they are wrong. He poisoned the fragile minds of our young generation with Russophobic politics. This rat lived in our state and gnawed at its foundations. From our young he has raised little rats, new enemies of our country.

    A living example is taking place in neighbouring Belarus, where the main participants in the protests are young, green people who do not understand what they are doing, who have been brainwashed by the same opposition rats as is Navalny. They are selling out their country for the filthy lucre of the standard bearers of “European freedom and democracy”. The same is being prepared in Russia with the help of such rats as Navalny and his accomplices. We have quite a few young people who want to live a wonderful life, but have not done anything in order to achieve this. And when Navalny and his ilk’s siren songs are poured into their ears and supported by small presents, they follow them like cattle being led to their slaughter.

    Was there an attempt to poison Navalny? This does not fit in with all the facts that have been revealed in the course of this “poisoning” story. But throughout all this time, I have had one obsessive thought that something was missing: there was nothing to crown these events. And I realized that what was missing was an underground film studio run by a “White Helmets” organization.

    True, this time our Western and American “partners” have done without “White Helmets”: they consider us “stupid”. But they seem to have achieved their goal of throwing shit at Russia. And not without the help of our Russian leadership, which justifies its actions rather than having acted tough from day one and put this barking pack of Western curs in its place.

    Well, our rat, “not poisoned” by a chemical warfare agent and known as Aleksei Navalny, has turned from a rodent into a wolf. Not only doctors, but also specialists of a completely different type have worked on him very well. Sitting behind a cordon, one can bare one’s teeth at Russia. The bread of their “breadwinners”, although dirty, has to be earned

    It would be interesting to know whether, after all this story with Navalny, in which only an idiot cannot see the direct cooperation of this Russian citizen with the outright enemies of Russia, there will not be fewer “rats”? Maybe the penny will drop amongst some of them that they are spitting in the well from which they will have to drink for a long time?

    And yet, Navalny is going to return to Russia. How hard faced of him! The fact that this individual has neither honour nor conscience will not surprise anyone. But the fact that he considers himself immortal is surprising and far from the truth, in that there is no better way to hit Russia again, namely when his “masters” make him a sacrificial victim and a great martyr of the Putin regime, this time truly destroying him. Unless, of course, he first ends up behind bars, where he they will not be able to get at him.

    Because after such an article, some readers go into hysterics in their comments, I have to say right away that this article has not been written either by a kremlinbot or by a paid journalist: I am an ordinary citizen of my country. This is my personal opinion about all of this, taken off the top of my head, and now you know where I stand. And you, dear reader, have the right either to agree with me or not.


  9. So, it all came to nothing:

    “The Twitter statements do not constitute a self-executing declassification order,” they [DoJ] said. “Indeed, they provide no more authority to the Department to declassify material that the Presidential Memorandum giving the Attorney General authority to declassify information that the President signed on May 23, 2019. As with that memorandum, the President’s Twitter statements do not require the declassification of any particular documents and have not resulted in the declassification of any FD-302s [FBI interview summaries] at issue in this case.”

    Trump knew this. He just wanted to give potential voters a little hope/excitement but not draw the ire of the deep-shit state


    1. I believe my assessment was “not a chance”. But I would not be too sure Trump knew it would come to nothing. I think he is still learning the limits of what he can do. Past presidents who had the bipartisan confidence of the corporations (think Dubya Bush) were allowed to apply their own creative interpretation of the law pretty much at will. But Trump is held to a different standard.


  10. Marasmus</b (from the other Greek. μαρασμός — exhaustion, extinction) — an almost complete cessation of the mental activity of a person.

    Russian blog yesterday:

    Маразм! Немецкий политик о Навальном: Лицемерии Запада

    Marasmus! A German Politician on Navalny: The Hypocrisies Of The West

    A little about television in Germany

    Sarah Wagenknecht has appeared on the German television station ZDF Markus Lanz programme and answered the host’s questions about Navalny and coronavirus.

    Channel ZDF is a German public television company, which began broadcasting on April 1, 1963, and is available throughout the Federal Republic of Germany. Headed by a board of directors, it consists of 16 representatives from sixteen German states, 3 federal governments, and 12 from the Bundestag in proportion to the size of the factions therein, and 46 from public organizations. The channel is financed by a broadcasting licence fee [and also by advertising revenues — ME], collected from all radio and television owners.

    ZDF [Zweites Deutsches Fernsehen – “Second German Television” is officially, at least, an independent nonprofit institution, founded by all the federal states of Germany — ME] is one of the few truly independent media outlets, as the rest are owned by corporations and those close to the ruling elites.

    The Navalny poisoning

    Let us go over the poisoning briefly. There are many questions about it.

    Why, apart from Navalny, was no one hurt?

    Why was Navalny’s room not tidied up by the hotel staff?

    Why did those who poisoned Navalny not cover their tracks?

    How could “Novichok” have been found in an aqueous solution, if it could not survive for more than a day in such a solution (the opinion of Doctor of Chemical Sciences Leonid Rink), and was still traceable a fortnight later?

    If “Novichok” was found ON a bottle, how did those who collected the “evidence” at the hotel survive?

    Why does the Russian side have no access to the “investigation analyses”?

    Why did Navalny survive after having been being poisoned with nerve gas [sic], which is fatal — there have been only 2 cases of survivors in history: one died a year later, the second remained disabled, and yet Navalny is already up on his feet and walking around?

    Navalny, Putin and the hypocrisy of the West.

    Sarah Wagenknecht, during an interview on the ZDF TV channel, asked very important questions.

    Why do we treat the situation with Navalny differently, when undesirables in Saudi Arabia are dissolved in acid, for which actions no sanctions have been imposed or even a criminal case opened?.

    Compromising the law and common sense, a man who exposes the secret services and their crimes against certain people and all mankind has been put in prison, yet Navalny is at large.

    Nobody is imposing sanctions against America for shooting civilians from drones: nobody has even been imprisoned for this.

    Someone will say that this is insanity, but no: this is protection of national interests on the part of each state and has nothing to do with democracy or justice.

    P.S Unfortunately, for a long time now no one has cared about the truth: laws are violated, common sense and logic are lost, and ordinary people suffer from this and pay for all of this out of their own pockets, and with their health, and sometimes even with their lives.


  11. KP

    Extract from interview.

    Офицер химслужбы: Алексей Навальный отравился «Новичком»? Не держите нас за дураков!
    Бывший начальник химической службы 31-й подводной дивизии, писатель Александр Покровский оценил версию об отравлении Алексея Навального «Новичком»

    Chemical weapons officer: Alexey Navalny was poisoned by “Novichok”? Do not take us for fools!
    The former head of the chemical service of the 31st submarine division, writer Alexander Pokrovsky, evaluates the story about Alexey Navalny’s poisoning by “Novichok”.

    Extract from interview.

    Everyone is saying “Novichok” and thinks this is just is one substance, but it is a series of substances called VX-gases. You can’t just say, “Take a chemical and make a tablet out of it” because there is the question of the technology, which costs billions. The plant that does this, the laboratory, the training of the staff costs not just one billion but many billions, and this has been so for decades. In order to have made one tablet for Comrade Navalny, it would have been necessary to spend tens of years and tens of billions. Wouldn’t it have been easier simply to have bought a hammer? …

    So these three clowns in a Tomsk hotel room start showing how they took this bottle. Are you guys fucking kidding us? They are laughing at me. Are they trying to say I’m an idiot? This is like when the “White Helmets” in Syria were showing their videos. I said: “What do you want to say to me —that I’m an idiot?” This video from the Tomsk hotel is like one of the “White Helmets” ones. You guys have learnt from shitty examples. Then there are these flashing blinkers that go right across Berlin to the “Charite”. Don’t you feel sorry for the German city? The banker Kivilidi in the ’90s was hit with low-quality crap, but all the pathologists who were involved in that case died. Yet there they are, all strolling around; some of them are wearing gloves and face masks. Are you guys kidding me? What kind of mask? There can be no mask. Everything goes through such a mask quite easily.


  12. Vis my previous comment of the west looking the other way on Myanmar/Burma because it is a strategically important ally (useful against China):

    Euractiv: EU slammed for funding ‘discriminatory’ Myanmar voting application

    The EU and ‘human rights’, but not for the wrong people. Ah, I hear them say, ‘If we were not invovled, it would be much worse for them!‘ The self-justification of hypocritical foreign policy never ends.


    1. “After concerns were recently leveled at the EU for its role in supporting the app, Pierre Michel, public diplomacy adviser to the EU’s Myanmar mission, told Reuters that the bloc had “strongly advocated for the removal of all controversial data that could lead to discrimination and exclusion.”

      On the other side of the coin, however, representatives from the EU as well as partners involved in the development of the app, have praised the app for its capacity to provide more information about prospective candidates for election.”

      The EU is not as smart as it thinks it is, but it is plenty smart enough to have lined up its justifications in advance – a bad entity’s prejudicial election-tampering is a good entity’s ‘making sure you have as much information as possible before casting your ballot’. After all, you wouldn’t want to vote for a Rohingya and not realize it until after the election, would you? You know – those people the Myanmar government had a serious go at eradicating back in 2017, which resulted in ‘the largest human exodus in Asia since the Vietnam war’? The ones Human Rights Watch – that stalwart guardian of human empowerment run by Kenneth ‘Honest Kenny’ Roth – described as recently as last week as ‘living in an open prison’?

      You have to hand it to the EU – it’s not everyone who could take a position in which it is being relentlessly bullied and manipulated by the United States, and consequently perhaps deserving of sympathy and support, and say instead, “Why, see here! I can be every bit as reprehensible if I put my mind to it, so just look out!”


      1. It’s certainly no skin off the u-Ropean Parliament’s nose, the ones who chose the yearly ‘Sakharov Prize’ winners…

        Aung San Suu Kyi won the Sakharov Prize in 1990 and picked it up in 2013. In 2020, the S&D group (Socialist & Democrat) nominated the Byelorussia ‘Opposition’. And they finally ‘ suspended’ Aung San Suu Kyi’s prize. That’s ‘suspended’, not ‘revoked.’ You never know, she may still come good and u-Ropean Parliament will be a happier place.


  13. More bullshit off the Bullshitter:

    View this post on Instagram

    Про деньги 💰 Обещал рассказать – рассказываю. ⠀ Сначала новости: вчера узнал, что заблокировали не только банковские счета мои и членов моей семьи, но и даже мой счет ИП (индивидуальный предприниматель). ⠀ Это совершенно незаконно. Таким образом у меня не просто украли все деньги, которые были, но и лишили возможности их зарабатывать. Впрочем, разве можно было ожидать чего-то другого? Кампания "Навальный, лучше не возвращайся" набирает обороты. Квартира арестована, текущие счета арестованы, счет ИП арестован. ⠀ Ничего, прорвемся. ⠀ Ну так тем интереснее, кто оплатил моё лечение и пребывание в Германии, да? ⠀ Финансы и источники доходов политика должны быть открыты. Я всегда выступаю за это и сам уже несколько лет публикую информацию о своих доходах и имуществе, хотя обязанности у меня такой нет, я не чиновник. Расходы выглядят так: 1. самолёт, на котором меня привезли в Германию. 2. Лечение в больнице. 3. Расходы на лечение, реабилитацию и проживание вне больницы. ⠀ Самолёт стоил 79 тысяч евро и оплатил его предприниматель Борис Зимин @boris.zimin. ⠀ Финальный счёт за лечение от больницы 49 900 евро. Оплачен вскладчину: – предпринимателем Евгением Чичваркиным @tot_samy_chichvarkin – экономистом Сергеем Алексашенко – айтишник Роман Иванов aka @kukutz ⠀ Во сколько обойдётся дальнейшее проживание и лечение неясно, потому что неясен срок восстановления. Вчера ходил в госпиталь делать новую порцию тестов, они сказали, что все пока идёт хорошо. Но в любом случае расходы также взял на себя Евгений Чичваркин. ⠀ Спасибо этим замечательным людям как и огромному количеству других, кто предложил помощь, но мы не смогли ее принять по причинам сложного регулирования европейской банковской системы. Тут с ума сойдёшь пока правильно оформишь эти платежи, если хочешь сделать все по честному. Отдельное спасибо Леониду Волкову @leonidvolkov , который умудрился все организовать. ⠀ Вот. Отчитался. А теперь попробуйте спросить у путинских чиновников, кто оплачивает их перелеты на частных самолетах, лечение в европейских клиниках и каким «бизнесом» занимаются их жены и дети, показывающие доходы в сотни миллионов. Может, они тоже ответят? 😉 Фото @jenskochphoto

    A post shared by Алексей Навальный (@navalny) on

    First, the news: yesterday I learnt that not only my and my family’s bank accounts had been blocked, but even my account as an Individual Entrepreneur. Pray tell what exactly is your “enterprise” — blogging?]

    This is completely illegal
    [bullshit]. Thus, they have not only stolen [bullshit] all the money that I had, but also deprived me of the opportunity of earning it. [bullshit]. However, could you have expected anything else? The “Navalny Had Better Not Come Back” campaign is gaining momentum [bullshit]. My apartment has been seized, as have been my current and Individual Entrepreneur accounts.

    It doesn’t matter — well get by somehow.

    So the more interesting
    [news] is who has paid for my treatment and stay in Germany, right?

    A politician’s finances and sources of income must be open. I have always advocated this, and for several years I myself have been publishing information about my income and property, although I do not have such a duty to do so, as I have no official capacity.
    That’s right: you’re a blogger!]

    The expenses look like this: 1. the aeroplane on which I was brought to Germany. 2. Hospital treatment. 3. Expenses for treatment, rehabilitation and living outside the hospital.

    The aeroplane cost 79 thousand euros and was paid for by the entrepreneur Boris Zimin

    The final bill for treatment from the hospital is 49,900 euros. Payment shared by:
    – entrepreneur Evgeny Chichvarkin
    – economist Sergey Aleksashenko
    – IT specialist Roman Ivanov aka

    How much further accommodation and treatment will cost is unclear, because the recovery period is unclear. Yesterday I went to the hospital to do a new batch of tests; they said that everything is going well so far. But in any case, Evgeny Chichvarkin has also covered these costs.

    Thanks to these wonderful people as well as a huge number of others who have offered help, but we could not accept it owing to the complex regulation of the European banking system. Here you will go crazy as long as you correctly arrange these payments, if you want to do everything honestly. Special thanks to Leonid Volkov
    @leonidvolkov, who managed to organize everything.

    So there you are. Everything reported. Now try asking Putin’s officials who pays for their private jet flights, treatment in European clinics, and what kind of “business” their wives and children are doing, with incomes in the hundreds of millions. Maybe they will answer too? 😉 Photo

    Yeah, I’ve got a question for you, lying arsehole and US agent: who pays for your daughter’s education and accommodation at Stanford, California, USA, and who paid for her flight from California to Berlin so as to see her papa before he croaked from Novichok poisoning?


    1. Missed out the first line of that horseshit Instagram from the Bullshitter. It reads thus:

      Про деньги 💰
      Обещал рассказать – рассказываю.

      And means:

      About money
      I promised to tell you — I’m telling you:


      1. I pity the s/thole country you live in ME. 3 hours from earth to docking? What is that? FAKE! A gas station masquerading as a country. Pah!

        Independent: Astronauts smash record to reach ISS in just three hours

        Roscosmos says it is the ‘first time in history’ such a journey has taken place

        …Three hours and three minutes later, their Soyuz MS-17 capsule docked with the ISS after just two orbits of the Earth.

        Russian space agency Roscosmos said it was the “first time in history” that so few orbits were needed to reach the space station…


        Why the ‘ ‘ in the byline when it is ” ” in the body text? Has any one else done it?


          1. The crewed flight has been delayed due to anomalous engine performance in a recent Falcon launch.

            In other news, the DoD is in discussion with SpaceX to use their Superheavy/Startship to delivery troops and weapons to any location on earth in less than an hours.

            The above website is one of the legion SpaceX fanboys. Starship development has been a sh!t-show of bad engineering but to the fan boys its epic, beyond epic! Unprecedented engineering! They still talk confidently of a Starship landing on the moon with in a few years full of space cadets sporting the latest fashions in space suits.


            1. US & 7 friendly nations sign Artemis Accords to carve up moon – but satellite is hard to reach without Russia’s help

              The US has signed a treaty with seven countries governing exploration and exploitation of the Moon and its resources. While many signatories never even landed there, Russia and China were – perhaps unsurprisingly – not invited.

              The Artemis Accords, proposed in May to set reasonable boundaries for the growing number of countries eager to stake a claim to Earth’s only satellite, have been officially unveiled on Tuesday. In addition to the US, the signatory countries are Australia, Canada, Japan, Italy, the UK, Luxembourg, the UAE, and Japan….

              Hey, come help us set up a regular bus service to the moon and back, but you and your mate China are not invited to out little club that has already carved the moon up for ourselves. It’s nothing personal, so please contribute. You’ll get nothing back. We promise!

              It’s not surprising now that the US (in particular) sees its space delivery free of Russia how quickly they are willing to run in the other direction, but want Russia as on-call help/backup just in case.


      2. Deeply sad – the recent man of substance who had a nice apartment in Moscow, a private driver and a daughter at Stanford is now indigent, living on the kindness of…ahem…strangers. What is the world coming to?


    2. It should have been above: [Pray tell what exactly is your “enterprise” — blogging?]

      In parentheses. First square bracket missing.

      My cynical query, not Navalny’s Instagram shite.


  14. And on and on it goes . . . as reported in Vedomost, more hearsay shite from the ever faithful Russophobic and mendacious “New York Times”:

    13 часов назад
    NYT заявила о «двойном отравлении» Навального

    13 hours ago
    NYT has announced “double poisoning” of Navalny

    FBK founder Aleksei Navalny could have survived a “double poisoning” with “Novichok” poison, which had been added as a powder to his tea before his flight to Tomsk, and had also been found on a bottle of water, according to “The New York Times”, citing an unnamed senior official of the German special services.

    “German experts who have examined the evidence now say that the “Novichok” was a powder dissolved in a liquid, most likely in the tea that Navalny drank at the airport before his flight”, said a senior German security official, on condition of anonymity, says the publication. At the same time, the publication informant pointed out that the details of how exactly the founder of the FBK had been poisoned remain unclear.

    The newspaper also reminds readers that German experts had already stated that traces of poison had been found on a bottle which the FBK employees had allegedly taken from his [Navalny’s] hotel room. “This suggests that Navalny had been in contact with the poison before arriving at the airport, or perhaps he was poisoned twice”, the publication says.

    The initial version of the alleged poisoning, which was announced by Navalny’s press secretary Kira Yarmysh, was that the poison had been in the politician’s tea, drunk by him on August 20 at Tomsk airport before his boarding an aircraft. However, after the German authorities had announced the discovery of “Novichok” in the politician’s analyses, on September 17 FBK employees posted on Navalny’s Instagram page a video taken in his hotel room, where they showed bottles of water, allegedly taken away by them for investigation in Germany. According to them, German experts had found traces of the “Novichok” poison on them. Later, “Spiegel” reported that in early September, at a closed meeting with members of the Bundestag and Chancellor Angela Merkel, the State Secretary for Defence Gerd Hufe had announced the discovery of traces of the poison on the bottle.

    In early October, the Ministry of Internal Affairs reported that, as a result of a pre-investigation check, it turned out that FBK officials had not taken any bottles of water to Germany, although they confirmed that they had taken three bottles from his hotel room in Tomsk. Law enforcers also added that immediately after having passed through control at Tolmachevo airport (Novosibirsk), Navalny’s associate Maria Pevchikh had bought a 500 ml bottle of “Holy Spring” water from a vending machine, with which she flew to Omsk, and then from Omsk to Germany.

    In addition to the German authorities, experts from France and Sweden have announced the poisoning of the founder of FBK with a substance from the “Novichok” group. The Organization for the Prohibition of Chemical Weapons (OPCW) has said that it had found in the Navalny analyses traces of a substance that is similar in structure to “Novichok”, but is not included in the Convention on the Prohibition of Chemical Weapons. In Russia, this version about the poisoning of Navalny has not been confirmed. Doctors at the Omsk hospital, where the oppositionist was taken immediately after he had lost consciousness on the aeroplane that was flying from Tomsk to Moscow on August 20, have not found any traces of the toxic substance in his analyses.

    Sowing confusion and obfuscating and quoting unnamed sources!

    And for me at least, this whole tale recounted by NYT seems to have the aim of diverting attention away from the role played by the British agent and Russian traitoress Pevchikh.

    No apologies for writing “traitress” above, which word “Merriam – Webster” informs me is British and obsolete.

    I also write “actress” and the “woke” spellchecker tries to correct me.

    Then again, I wrote “woman” above and not “lady”, which seems to be the preferred term in US English for “woman”, or, as the truly “woke” as regards “gender issues” would say: “a person who menstruates”.

    Best wishes from an Angry Old Man in Moscow!



    1. Begging the NYT’s pardon (and the pardon of the German authorities) but isn’t Novichok supposed to be unstable enough that water can break up its chemical bonds and even water vapour can render it harmless after some time?

      After all, when the residents of Salisbury were worried about being possibly contaminated by Novichok back in early 2018, they were initially advised by the authorities to wash all their clothes and all would be well.

      Come to think of it, perhaps that’s why a double dose of Novichok is thought to have been necessary to try to finish off Navalny: because the idiot assassins keep dunking it into water before trying to poison him.


      1. As Wagenknecht stated on ZDF the other day {see above):

        How could “Novichok” have been found in an aqueous solution, if it could not survive for more than a day in such a solution (the opinion of Doctor of Chemical Sciences Leonid Rink), and was still traceable a fortnight later?

        Over to you, NYT.


      2. Novichok is supposed to be a VX agent, and if that description is accurate it is supposed to be miscible in water below 48.9 degrees Fahrenheit, which is to say it can be mixed in water in any ratio without separation of the two phases. That’s only 9.39 Celsius, which seems a little chilly for a hotel room. Above that, yes, you would think flushing with water is the standard immediate-action drill. That’s according to the Agency for Toxic Substances and Disease Registry (ATSDR).

        I note also that exposure limits to VX agents for the ‘general population’ – which I guess do not include Superman Navalny – are 0.0000006 mg per m3 over an 8-hour workshift. Yet an easily-detectable residue remained on the water bottles and failed to kill the Team Navalny searchers, while a German ‘expert’ theorized that the residue may have been transferred to the bottle from Navalny’s lips, and not the other way around.

        “Muscarinic effects include pinpoint pupils; blurred or dim vision; conjunctivitis; eye and head pain; hypersecretion by salivary, lacrimal, sweat, and bronchial glands; narrowing of the bronchi; nausea, vomiting, diarrhea, and crampy abdominal pains; urinary and fecal incontinence; and slow heart rate.

        Nicotinic effects include skeletal muscle twitching, cramping, and weakness. Nicotinic stimulation can obscure certain muscarinic effects and produce rapid heart rate and high blood pressure.

        Relatively small to moderate vapor exposure causes pinpoint pupils, rhinorrhea, bronchoconstriction, excessive bronchial secretions, and slight to moderate dyspnea. Mild to moderate dermal exposure results in sweating and muscular fasciculations at the site of contact, nausea, vomiting, diarrhea, and weakness. The onset of these mild to moderate signs and symptoms following dermal exposure may be delayed for as long as 18 hours. Higher exposures (any route) cause loss of consciousness, seizures, muscle fasciculations, flaccid paralysis, copious secretions, apnea, and death. “

        Navalny was in a coma for a week or more. He had to have had a severe exposure. Any of those sound like his symptoms? Roaring and screaming in pain in there anywhere?

        According to these guidelines, water is used for basic decontamination mostly in the instances of exposure to liquid agent.


  15. German Foreign Minister Ulrich Friedrich Wilhelm Joachim von Ribbentrop Heiko Maas waxes lyrical again:

    Новое заявление главы МИД Германии относительно дела Навального и дальнейших отношений между Россией и ФРГ

    New statement by the German Foreign Minister regarding the Navalny case and further relations between Russia and the FRG

    Joachim von Ribbentrop

    Heiko Maas

    According to [Maas], the FRG does not intend to freeze cooperation with our country, but on the contrary, is interested in the relations between our countries not only not deteriorating, but developing further in various directions. But at the same time, the head of the German Foreign Ministry recalled that good relations can be built only on the basis of trust and the expression of mutual respect by the parties to each other.

    Does such a statement by the German side mean that the situation with Navalny has found its logical solution? Not at all. Our European partners continue to repeat, as a mantra, statements that the attempted assassination of a Russian oppositionist should be investigated and that responsibility for the results of investigative actions lies with Russia. It cannot be said that such a position contributes to the strengthening of trust and relations between Russia and Germany, however, cooperation between our countries will most likely continue, since even this attempt by third forces to interrupt the partnership relations between Moscow and Berlin that have developed over decades has clearly failed.
    As for the sanctions that the European Union threatens to impose on Russia, then, as we have said earlier, if they are, they will be more in words than in deeds. In other words, a loud statement will be made by the European parliamentarians, but they will not affect the actual economic and political cooperation between our countries.

    Blah, blah, blah …



    1. Hey, bullshitting arsehole! I think you had better start learning some Deutsch, because I don’t think you will be coming back here.

      Or maybe you will fuck off to California?

      Please do!


      1. Poor Germany! It appears to be blowing off Russian trade and investment, and in return will get the lovely Navalny family as permanent guests of the state, with King Lyosha as Emperor-in exile. What a deal! I bet he’s already scouting around for new digs which will be palatial appropriate to his position as the future leader of Russia. And he likely intends to do just about as much work in Germany as he did in Russia, which is to say none.

        I doubt a move to America is in Washington’s plans – it would too openly acknowledge his role as a US pawn, while the State Department of International Meddling probably has some fantasies that he will be a useful extension of its influence in Europe.


    2. Perhaps Maas has been reading the Norwegian papers and considering what a production cut of 800,000 bpd might look like.

      The strike ended at the 11th hour without a shutdown, and the oilworkers reached an accord with the labor union…but where’s that vaunted trust now? What about next time? Can Norway still be regarded as a reliable partner?

      Paradoxically, Maas seems to be saying that trust between ‘the partners’ can only be restored when Russia admits it tried to assassinate Navalny with the knowledge and perhaps at the orders of the head of the Russian state, and commences an investigation. Sure; that spells ‘reliable partner’ to me. And thanks to Navalny’s constant bleating that Putin himself ordered the hit, such an investigation could not result in some mook nobody has ever heard of being charged – it would have to result in the Russian president in the dock to answer for his crimes before Yurrup felt ready to move forward with the relationship. Think that’s going to happen? Me, either.

      So long, Europe – it wasn’t ever actually nice knowing you, but it was sometimes tolerable.

      Some analysts hold that Russia could not survive without European investment; that the great majority of foreign investment in Russia is European. That last part is probably true. However, foreign investment in Russia has receded from more than $54 Billion annually between 2011 and 2013 to around $19 Billion annually between 2015 and 2018.

      “Many observers credit sanctions with at least tempering those figures, citing a collapse in foreign direct investment — from an annual average of $54.5bn between 2011 and 2013 to $19.2bn between 2015 and 2018 — as a major factor.”

      Yet Russia is still there, engine still turning over, apparently undaunted and by some descriptions, thriving.

      “The results have been impressive. All three levels of Russia’s government ran a budget surplus in 2018 and 2019, and its total public debt is about 15 per cent of GDP. The EU average is 80 per cent.

      Since the end of 2015, Russia’s international currency reserves have risen almost 50 per cent to $542bn at the end of November, the highest level since 2011 and close to a record peak achieved in 2008. The farming sector is booming — wheat production in 2017 was the highest ever on record — and Russia earned a record $24bn in agriculture exports last year, more than twice what it made from arms exports.”

      Significantly, trade with China has risen 53% in the last 3 years, accelerating to $107 Billion in 2019, and Moscow has stepped up its courting of the African nations.

      If Russia followed the western example, it would be even now threatening to not complete the Nord Stream II pipeline unless Heiko Maas is fired and replaced. And in a couple of weeks, Vladimir Putin could be chuckling to a forum of guests, “I said, Madame Chancellor, I’m on a plane in an hour. If he’s not fired, you’re not getting a pipeline. And son of a bitch, he got fired”. It is Germany who cannot be trusted; it has become weak and dependent on America, and fears offending it so much that it will continue to compromise its own interests rather than incur American displeasure.


      1. Maybe Russia doesn’t even need to say ‘Goodbye.’ Just not pick up the phone. If they need to leave a message they can do so on the answerphone. As you point out, Russia is doing much better (as is China) already. Both have persistence working off a solid base. They just need to stay the course which I’m afraid means more strategic patience but maybe with the odd slap or two.

        Things are only going to get worse here in the West. Mass redundancies for starters are inevitable in the very near future. Russia only needs respond if it receives something from the other side that is not b/s. It may take a while, but we are reaching rock bottom and a tipping point. I would say five years but everything is accelerated, so I would guess 2023 or so.

        The whole COVID-19 thing tops a accumulation of everything that has been f/ked since the 1990s when the ‘West won the Cold War’ and then sat on its laurels knowing everything in future would be golden. As*terity in response to the self-inflicted 2008 financial crisis only made things worse. COVID-19 marks the West running out of road to kick the can down. It should have been manageable (a la Asie) but we are far too clever to copy them! As*terity directly impacted on pandemic preparedness despite multiple reports warning of exactly this kind of thing. It really is mass incompetence on a grand scale. But remember, it’s nobody’s fault. No-one could have foreseen this, apart from those that did and wrote and warned about it over and over again. But we’ve got big guns. HURRAH!


  16. Al-Beeb s’Allah: Australian police drop case against journalist who reported ‘war crimes’

    Australian police say they will not prosecute a journalist for his reporting on alleged war crimes by Australian soldiers.

    …The raids on the ABC and the home of a News Corp Australia journalist had sparked a backlash from the media and press freedom advocates…

    …A similar case against News Corp Australia journalist Annika Smethurst was dropped in May. …

    Quite the non-apology.

    The rule is if you are a ‘Democracy’ you are afforded extra ‘latitude’ in abusing your so-called freedoms as long as you don’t do it too much* and the press learns its lesson to keep away from anything that is embarassing to the state. As the civil servants in Yes Minister explain, embarassing stuff is always classified as at least ‘secret’ if not ‘top secret’ even if it poses no threat to the security of the state.

    BTW, is the choice of headline picture BBC ‘snark’?

    * subject to redefinition of ‘too much.’


  17. How rock star Roger Waters was hung out to dry by Amnesty and Bellingcat for his views on Syrian ‘chemical attack’

    Kit Klarenberg is an investigative journalist.

    A leaked phone call reveals that outside pressure caused Amnesty to pull its promotion of a webinar featuring Pink Floyd’s Roger Waters – a vocal skeptic of the Douma ‘chemical attack’ that prompted Western powers to bomb Syria. ..

    Plenty more at the link.

    I’m surprised that Waters is surprised. Travesty International has long stopped being an independent group. Surely he could not have missed the top level appointments back and forth between it and No-man Rights Watch of the right kind of people a few years back? Douma chemical attacks not proven? The PPNN aren’t interested in reporting it especially after they gave a lot of oxygen of publicity that they had indeed ocurred. It’s just another trip on the media carrousel of amplifying claims and going quiet when they are eventually found to be bs.


  18. RT

    Six years after MH17 tragedy, Russia withdraws from ‘pointless’ investigation consultations with Netherlands & Australia
    15 Oct, 2020 09:01 / Updated 1 hour ago

    And first in with a comment, a Washington bot:

    “On 19 June 2019, the Dutch Public Prosecution Service charged four people with murder in connection with the shooting down of the aircraft: three Russians, Igor Girkin, Sergey Dubinsky, and Oleg Pulatov, and one Ukrainian, Leonid Kharchenko. International arrest warrants were issued in respect of each of the accused.”

    Russia should admit that it downed the MH17 aircraft. We know it takes a lot of courage to own up to your mistakes but c’mon. Your idols in Iran admitted it. Take some notes, Russia.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. It seems that Russian withdrawal from the bogus Dutch JIT has upset the US arselickers in the Netherlands.

      Посла России вызвали в МИД Нидерландов из-за отказа от консультаций по MH17

      Russian Ambassador summoned to the Netherlands Foreign Ministry because of refusal to consult on MH17

      AMSTERDAM, October 16, 2020, 04:27 – REGNUM Russian withdrawal from trilateral consultations on the Malaysian Airlines flight MH17 crash in 2014 was the reason for calling Alexander Shulgin, the Russian Ambassador in The Hague, to the Dutch Foreign Ministry, the Dutch foreign ministry press service reported on October 15 .

      “The Russian Ambassador was summoned to the Dutch Foreign Ministry today, and this information was brought to his attention”, explained the head of the department, Stef Blok, in his message to parliament.

      He added that the Dutch government had already emphasized, including during negotiations with Russian Foreign Minister Sergei Lavrov, that it attaches great importance to these trilateral negotiations.

      It should be recalled that Russia announced its withdrawal from the format of consultations with Australia and the Netherlands on the case of the crash of flight MH17 in connection with inadequate and unsubstantiated accusations against itself, the defence of the rights of the victims’ relatives being used in The Hague as a cover for this action.

      Yes, Russian participants at the JIT in the Hague should simply sit there and have shit thrown at them, have their proffered arguments and evidence for the Russian defence refused consideration and then simply “man up”, and confess Russian guilt for the shooting down of MH!7.

      And rightly so, because this is how the opinion makers in the West have decided who is the guilty party, and who can blame the JIT for its actions?

      Flight MH17, two years on: ‘As far as I’m concerned, Putin killed my son’
      Luke Harding
      Wed 13 Jul 2016 17.05 BST


      1. I don’t think the Dutch are upset at all. The whole set up was to stitch up Russia. This plays in to that narrative. This is good PR for the Dutch. They’re not interested in long term consequences (lessons not learned again) because they assume Russia will always come around and that any making up will be done without an apology.

        Vis Puke Farting, Steve Rosenturd wrote his bit from Nagorno-Karabakh (Ola Guerin from Az) and he managed to find someone to quote:

        “I used to respect [President Vladimir] Putin,” he says, “but he betrayed us long ago.

        “He does business with Turkey. He’s building them a nuclear power station. What Putin needs to realise is that if we’re destroyed, the whole of the Caucasus and southern Russia will end up under Turkish rule. If we die, so will Russia.”

        It’s quite the Pork Pie News Networks theme to pick a quote that fully encapsulates the western propaganda. It’s not lying per se, but ‘news narrative management.’



        1. Really let down by Putin Armenians.

          Meanwhile, from the “anti-regime” Moscow Times:

          Putin’s Approval Rating Returns to Pre-Coronavirus Levels – Poll
          Aug. 27, 2020

          President Vladimir Putin’s approval rating has jumped to one of its highest levels since the start of the year as Russia continues its steady recovery from the coronavirus outbreak, the independent Levada Center polling agency said Wednesday.

          At 66% in August, Putin’s approval rating went up by six percentage points in a month and almost reached the high 60s in January and February, according to Levada’s results. The share of Russians who approve of Putin hit a historic low of 59% at the height of the pandemic in April and May before slightly improving to 60% in June and July.

          Of course, Rosenberg, who is based in Moscow, is blissfully unaware of this.


        2. I would agree the Dutch are not particularly upset, since they probably are the recipients of such ringing praise and applause from Washington that their vanity is tickled unto satiety. However, they must put a sober face on it, because they don’t want to be blamed for wrecking trade relations between Russia and all of Europe, not just themselves.

          Perhaps this will make clear to everyone that Russia is not just going to ‘admit it’ and hope to move on like Gaddafi did.


  19. KP

    Правда о лечении Навального: мог ли месяц его пребывания в «Шарите» действительно стоить 50 тысяч евро
    Разбираем финансовую сторону скандала с «отравлением»
    16 октября 2020 9:05

    The truth about Navalny’s treatment: could a month of his stay at the Charité really cost 50 thousand euros
    We analyze the financial side of the “poisoning” scandal

    16 October 2020 9:05

    Aw c’mon! Why don’t you believe me?

    On October 14, opposition leader Aleksei Navalny published a post on social networks with a report on how much had been spent for his treatment in the Berlin clinic “Charité”, where he had stayed for 31 days – from August 22 to September 22.

    During this time, even some of Aleksei’s supporters were interested in who had paid for the medicine and how much it had all cost.

    He did answer some of the questions: the treatment cost 49,900 euros and the bill was kindly covered by his three wealthy supporters of the liberal wing. The personalities of these people are so beautiful that it is worth saying a few words about them:

    Sergei Aleksashenko — an economist, a Yeltsin minister, one of the architects of the 1998 default. Now lives in the USA.

    Evgeny Chichvarkin is a businessman who made his fortune selling of mobile phones in the late nineties and the early years of the first decade of this century His opponents have argued that the source of his wealth is through shady business schemes, with the help of which “mobile phones” were allegedly imported without paying customs duties. He now he lives in London.

    Roman Ivanov is a Yandex employee, a programmer freak who dyes his long beard red-violet-blue.

    In addition, according to Navalny, another 79 thousand euros to pay for a private plane that brought Navalny from Omsk to Berlin was allocated by Boris Zimin (a philanthropic businessman, whose charitable foundation was recognized as a foreign agent in 2015 and was liquidated).

    But these explanations only increased the bewilderment. Especially with regards to the price of Navalny’s stay at the Charité. The residents of the Federal Republic of Germany interviewed by Komsomolskaya Pravda say that the figures look plausible — but still, according to their subjective experience, it is very cheap. We can say at the lowest level. Just a month’s stay in the hospital can cost so much — without medication, complicated procedures, physiotherapy, which, as far as can be judged from fragmentary publications, Navalny is still undergoing, even after discharge.

    So what is the real cost estimate for such a level of treatment? The Charité clinic, for obvious reasons, does not communicate with Russian journalists. does not communicate with Russian journalists. We don’t receive any data about Navalny, except for stingy press releases: “It’s a medical secret and we have no right to disclose personal information”.

    Finally, when you try to call the Charité, introduce yourself as a potential patient and enquire about the cost of services, they answer: “Send your medical record and hospital file, we will draw up an individual treatment plan, calculate the cost and inform you after a while”. That is the way things are done. And there are no price lists made available to the general public on the Charité website (and most other reputable German clinics) either.

    So let us try to calculate it ourselves.

    An ambulance call (which brought Navalny from Berlin airport to the clinic) — 900 euros.

    A stay in a ward — 500 euros a day for 31 days: 15,500 euros.

    Intensive resuscitation therapy — 4000 euros a day for 24 days: 96000 euros. (This figure of 24 days is given in one of Charité’s press releases).

    The total is € 112,400. Almost twice as much as Navalny indicated.


  20. Al’s-Jizz Error: Former French President Sarkozy charged over Libyan financing

    Nicolas Sarkozy is accused of using cash from former Libyan leader Muammar Gaddafi for his 2007 presidential campaign.

    Unfortunately, he David Cameron and O-Bomber won’t be punished for destroying Libya and millions of lives because that was not their ‘intent’, despite a series of catastrophic foreign policy interventions over the years. They should all be in jail until they die. Not a Dutch one. Belmarsh will do.


  21. via BBC To Launch Character Assassination Program On Journalists Who Investigated White Helmets’ Links To Al-Qaeda In Syria

    BBC Radio 4 are set to release a new audio series, entitled ‘Mayday’, about the notorious ‘White Helmets’ and its late co-founder James Le Mesurier. But what may seem to be a harmless dive into the subject, is seemingly set to include character assassinations of journalists presenting a separate narrative to that of what has generally been presented by the British Broadcast Corporation.

    In a fashion which to some is reminiscent of how world renowned journalist Julian Assange – WikiLeaks frontman currently held in Belmarsh maximum security prison – has historically faced character assassinations, it is feared that a similar tactic is set to be used against independent journalists reporting on the war in Syria….

    …The BBC’s ‘Mayday’ is yet to air and so casting an overall judgement on the program, at this point, would be a fruitless endeavor. However, what can be discussed, is what has been made public from online exchanges between journalists such as Eva Bartlett and Vanessa Beeley – whose work has been integral to the counter narrative on the ‘White Helmets’ and its co-founder – and BBC journalist Chloe Hadjimantheou, who is working on the program, reportedly ready to air later this month. …

    More at the link.


    1. Ha, ha!! ‘No formal training as a journalist’, hisses catty Chloe Hadjimantheou at Beeley. I’m sure you all remember Liz Wahl, who was the most celebrated journalist in America for about five minutes, after she quit RT live during a broadcast. She was, by her own admission, a nothing journalist on a languishing local newspaper on Saipan, who jumped at the RT job because she thought it was a chance to work in America but didn’t want to “move to some Podunk town to cover rescued kittens and the Fourth of July parade.” She confessed she had googled RT in search of a job, and knew nothing about the network – what kind of journalist is that? One whose views were so important she was summoned to testify before the House Committee on Foreign Relations, evidently.

      Now she’s so busy with job offers, she had time to run for Congress.

      Last I looked, District 23 in Texas was still represented by Republican Will Hurd, although I don’t know how much of an improvement that is, given one of his self-professed duties is preventing the Russians from stealing America’s secrets.

      Or how ’bout Dana Perino, who did not know what a reporter was talking about when he asked her a question regarding the Cuban missile crisis – she was only the fucking White House Press Secretary.


  22. crAP via Sweden’s gov’t proposes a 40% increase in defence spending

    Sweden’s left-leaning government proposes biggest increase in defence spending in 70 years.

    …The government’s proposal said that if an attack happens, it can start with assaults on important civilian and military targets, sabotage and “liquidation of key people”. The whole territory “will be affected by intensive combat activities with major consequences locally and regionally,” it said…

    …The defence expenditures of Sweden, which is not a NATO member, is currently 1.1 percent of gross domestic product (GDP).

    It was not clear when a vote on the plan could be held in the Swedish parliament…

    I bet the deluded Russophobic Greens are behind this. Maybe they can buy a handful of F-35s and fly them at weekends?


    1. 40% increase in defence spending? Would that cover the cost of salvaging the Norwegian frigate that sank almost two years when it hit a stationary oil tanker and bringing it to lie in Swedish waters in the Baltic Sea in the hope the ruined ship might still be functional enough to detect a Russian submarine?


  23. Another color revolution fails in Kyrgyzstan

    The dividing line between politics and crime will be thin if not non-existent under Kyrgyzstan’s new strongman

    by MK Bhadrakumar

    The great game never ends, it mutates. We are witnessing this in the latest upheavals in the Central Asian republic of Kyrgyzstan.

    The great game in Kyrgyzstan started in 2005 when the incumbent president, the Soviet physicist and academician Askar Akayev, was overthrown in a color revolution after a parliamentary election. …

    The rest at the link.


    1. The Americans do not consider a colour revolution a ‘failure’ if it merely leaves the target country in turmoil and ferment. It can bide like that awhile, drawing on peacekeeping resources, until America comes up with a suitable rescuer. By no means should a judgment that American efforts left the country worse off suggest that Washington considers the attempt a failure.


  24. These colours don’t run?

    ‘No way I’m going to a Soviet hospital’: Sharapova’s ex-coach defends US player who fled Russia after positive Covid-19 test
    15 Oct, 2020 15:35

    No way I’m going to a Soviet hospital and separating from my baby for 14 days,” Joyce wrote on Twitter.

    Scared shitless of a bogeyman that ceased to exist almost 30 years ago — you know, at “the end of history” when the world became unipolar and the mighty hegemon was born.

    Manifest destiny and all that shite.


      1. I’m sure Querrey won’t mind sitting thru a three-year ban on playing the professional circuit for his reckless behaviour.


        1. For comparison Maria Sharapova herself was subject to a two-year ban on playing tennis for taking meldonium once every three months or so.


      2. Fled to America, no doubt. Where there have been more than 7 million cases and over 9,600 deaths. Set against incompetent neo-Soviet Russia, where there have been 1.3 million cases, and just under 2,400 deaths.


  25. Harding and some other tosser on “The Guardian”:

    Western spies privately blame Russia’s FSB for Alexei Navalny poisoning
    Fri 16 Oct 2020 10.38 BSTLast modified on Fri 16 Oct 2020 14.08 BST

    European leaders have been quick to accuse the Russian state of being responsible for Navalny’s poisoning in August, but remain reluctant to explicitly blame the agency they believe is responsible or President Vladimir Putin himself.

    Western security sources, however, are confident about accusing the FSB in private, although the assertion is hard to test.

    Given that the Russian politician had been put under surveillance by the FSB, and that he had been poisoned with novichok, which is only available to Russian state actors, the commission said it believed the FSB was responsible.

    “In these circumstances and taking into account that Alexei Navalny was under surveillance at the time of his poisoning, it is reasonable to conclude that the poisoning was only possible with the involvement of the Federal Security Service,” the official report said.

    Highly likely, my dear Luke!


      1. Note how Harding and his associate label the US agent Navalny as a “Russian politician”, whereas Navalny himself wrote in a recent Instagram:

        “A politician’s finances and sources of income must be open. I have always advocated this, and for several years I myself have been publishing information about my income and property, although I do not have such a duty to do so, as I have no official capacity”.

        The blogger says he is not obliged to reveal his sources of income because he is not a politician.

        Navalny has no political party and had insignificant support at elections — when he stood for election, that is. He most recently was not allowed to stand for election as he is a convicted criminal under a suspended sentence, and before that prohibition, he could not stand for election as he had been unable to gather the minimum number of signatures from the electorate that are necessary in order to run as a candidate in an election.

        As regards the founded by him foreign-funded organization the FBK — “The Fund for the Struggle Against Corruption” — that organization has been liquidated.

        So, “having no official capacity”, what role does Navalny now play in Russian society, apart from his being a hired by the USA regime-change agitator at present taking part in play acting the part of a victim of a murder attempt made against him by the Russian state?


    1. USA politics is such a circus.
      This may influence the independent voters- to vote for Trump and convince those disappointed Trump voters who believed all his rhetoric about “draining the swamp” to give him another term.

      This election is difficult to read as both parties have no platform – it’s all about Trump.

      The media and the tech giants are clearly on the side of Biden.

      Biden will in my view just get back to efficiently starting wars – like he did with Obama and the media won’t report any of it.

      The UK Where I am, And the EU will unfortunately follow the USA on these adventures.


      1. Yes, I think you are probably right on all counts – nothing, but nothing could be so shocking so as to move a committed Democrat to vote for Trump. Biden could show up for a rally with a naked child under his arm, and introduce him as his cat, Mr. Bojangles, and the audience of Joe Or Die Democrats would just nod and smile. The only way revelations of the Biden family’s complicit criminality and legal exceptionalism could have an effect would be if it persuaded some Democrat voters to stay home on election day and not vote at all, or spoil their ballots.

        I’m pretty confident, though, that the ‘results’ CNN and the other Democrat-friendly media outlets extol are a mirage, much like the fake overthrow of Tripoli, staged on a Qatari movie set were aimed at convincing the faithful that all was lost and there was no point fighting inevitability. I frankly doubt Biden has anything like the Joe-mentum which would see him winning in a landslide. If the aim is to stupefy Republican voters with the uselessness of throwing their vote away, it will fail. America is more divided than it has ever been – a trend that sees new deepening of the divide every election – and Trump’s Republican and corporate base will never vote Democrat. Rigging through the mail-in vote remains a possibility, however. Apart from that, I think Trump is still in a good place to win a second term.


        1. I can go along with most of that.

          There have been reports of heavy early postal voting which are most likely for the ‘Democrats’, but the US election is about the Erectoral Colleges. So like last time, you can ‘win’ the popular vote, but according to the US Constipation, it is the Erectoral College that is the ultimate decider. What we don’t know, or I am too lazy to see which populous state have had a lot of postal votes, is where the postal votes were cast (i.e. Florida).

          As for the Hunter Biden revelations (sp?), the ‘Barbara Streisand’ effect has taken full force thanks to Dem leaning Tw@tter * F/kbuk. Is such nepotism abnormal? Ab. So. Lute. Ly. Not. Will it swing undecideds? I’m really not convinced.

          Like Furgal in the far east of Russia, most people understand that corruption/nepotism is a ‘feature’, not a ‘bug’ of the system. They ALL do it. The question is, is it ‘my bastard’ or someone else’s? The news about Hunter Biden in the Ukraine has been out there already a long time so I think this won’t make much of a difference.

          I still thing t-Rump will be re-erected (erectoral college) as I have not seen a big shift, buuuut, after four years whatever advantage he has maintained may well have been fine salami sliced away!


          1. The papers say the Democrats are elated with their early lead, but cautious because almost none of the mail-in votes are Republican. They are expected to vote on election day, leaving the Democrats to hope for bad weather or a poor turnout, as it is still very possible for the Democratic lead to evaporate in hours.


        2. I think Trump is still in a good place to win a second term.

          Up til a week or so ago I thought the same but I am beginning to wonder.

          Have a look at

          Of course the projections are only as good as the underlying surveys and the models but I am beginning to think Biden has a change. Trump’s performance in dealing or not dealing with the pandemic seems to be hurting him plus voters do not have the visceral hatred for Uncle Joe (Biden not Jughashvili) that they had for Hilary.

          The worry is: Will Biden’s crooks and retreaded cold war grifters be worse than Trump’s merry band of screw-ups?

          At least, from my point of view, the sheer level of incompetence of Trump’s régime had something to recommend it.


  26. Hurrah!

    The local clinic has just telephoned in order to inform me that my last coronavirus test, taken 2 days ago, has proven negative.

    I am no longer under house arrest! I am free to go outside!

    My ability to travel free of charge using my social card is still blocked, however, because I am an old man.



    1. Was the drug they gave you Favipiravir/Avifavir/Avigan? Maybe that works better than Remdesivir, which the WHO just said was no better than horse urine.


      1. After the CT scan, following my refusal to be hospitalized, they gave me a load of medication buckshee. All made in Russia, of course. Mrs. Exile wasn’t happy about this. She wanted me to be in hospital on a drip, as she was then when I took bad.

        This is what they gave me at the “Soviet” clinic

        Гидроксихлорохин [Gidroxikhlorokhin]: Hydroxychloroquine

        See: FDA cautions against use of hydroxychloroquine or chloroquine for COVID-19 outside of the hospital setting or a clinical trial due to risk of heart rhythm problems

        So that’s why they checked my ticker with an ECG first and asked if I had ever had problems with my heart!

        Азитромицин [Azitromitsin]: Azithromycin is an antibiotic used for the treatment of a number of bacterial infections.

        Амокосиклав [Amokociklav], that is Амокоциллин + клавулановая кислота [Amoktsillin + klavulanovaya kislota]: Amoxicillin / Clavulanic acid is an antibiotic useful for the treatment of a number of bacterial infections.


        1. The hydroxychloroquine-azithromycin duo combined with zinc and Vitamin C is the remedy that Donald Trump originally touted as a COVID-19 treatment to the jeers of the MSM and others. This remedy has apparently been recommended and used in Morocco and Turkey to treat people testing positive for the virus with success. It can only be used by people with mild to moderate symptoms and cannot be used by those people whose symptoms have progressed to the stage where they need hospital treatment. This is because HCQ can only be tolerated by the human body in tiny quantities without side effects on the heart. It is best used as a preventative or prophylactic medicine by people who have been infected (as determined by testing) but who have no symptoms or mild symptoms.

          Studies done on this hydroxychloroquine combination that discredit the drug, including one that the UK medical journal The Lancet quoted and then withdrew when the researchers later admitted their biases, nearly always use flawed samples of hospital patients as subjects to receive the remedy. There have been some HCQ studies using other COVID-19 patients in non-hospital settings but their results seem to be mixed. I have no idea though whether that could be because of the way the research was designed or if the researchers themselves might have carried a bias against HCQ that affected its design or the way they did the experiments.


            1. Good catch! I think everyone here can connect the dots – an inexpensive and already-available solution which is cheap enough that pharmaceutical suppliers could donate millions of doses, set against a situation in which Pharma researchers can virtually write themselves a blank cheque for the pursuit of a vaccine which is touted as the Holy Grail, and the only way we can ever get back to some semblance of our former lives. The cost of which leaves us at the pharmaceutical community’s (and their wealthy investors’) mercy and for which our governments have already submitted advance orders for billions of doses, without having any idea what the price will be.


        1. young self surely? Still congrats. Cast off those clothes and declare your status to the people’s of Moscow from your Balcony! You may be met with cries of “Ti ne messiya!”


  27. Kremlin critic Navalny convalescing in Black Forest: local media
    OCTOBER 15, 20207:28 PM UPDATED 2 DAYS AGO

    BERLIN (Reuters) – Kremlin critic Aleksei Navalny is recuperating in Germany’s southern Black Forest region after having been discharged last month from hospital in Berlin, where he was treated for poisoning, local media reported.

    The Suedkurier newspaper, citing several sources, reported that Navalny was staying in a holiday home in Ibach, a municipality in southwestern Germany, near the Swiss border.

    The Ibach mayor wrote on the municipality’s website: “Since this week a guest, a person of public life and public interest, is staying with his family in Ibach. They require a very high level of personal protection.”

    A Reuters witness said several police vehicles were parked on Thursday in the village of Oberibach, part of the district, and police had sealed off a section.

    Navalny, 44, was flown to Berlin from Russia for treatment after he fell ill on a flight on Aug. 20. The global chemical weapons watchdog subsequently confirmed he was poisoned with a new, undeclared variant in the Novichok group of toxins.

    Following his release from Berlin’s Charité hospital, he vowed to return to Russia.

    Herzliche Grüße aus Ibach — eure Ljoscha!

    Как Навальный, приехав на отдых в Шварцвальд, уже умудрился поднять там переполох

    How Navalny, having arrived in the Black Forest for recuperation, has already managed to raise a commotion there

    The story of the “poisoning of Navalny” has already bored everyone. Nevertheless, it is still interesting how, after treatment in the most expensive clinic in Germany, a person exposing corruption in Russia spends his free time. Where is his health restored and how? And, as it has turned out, how well the oppositionists live in our country!

    After a course of treatment at the Charité hospital, the tired and exhausted oppositionist went to rest in the Black Forest in a small German village in the most picturesque area of ​​the mountain range. It is like a picture from a book — beautiful landscapes, farms, water meadows. A real idyll.

    The appearance here of the allegedly poisoned Navalny has caused a real commotion. Firstly, there are black cars with tinted windows; secondly, there are many police officers and security men; finally and, thirdly, and what is of particular concern to the villagers, the local municipality building was hastily converted into a police headquarters. What for?

    Local residents say that people in civilian clothes constantly come out of there and people in civilian clothes constantly go inside. If someone approaches this building, the police immediately jump out of their vehicles.

    The village has only 360 inhabitants. And they were clearly not ready for such a recuperation. Nevertheless, everyone is already aware that “an ardent critic of the Kremlin” has settled in their village…

    “We want to live in peace here”, says one of the local residents

    But you can forget about tranquillity A drone is constantly buzzing over the village. The police are driving around the village in vans as if something had happened. Reporters in a tight circle surround the village burgermeister Helmut Kaiser, who says that Navalny came out of nowhere (in other words, no one was waiting for him) and that he, Helmut Kaiser, had been taken by surprise.

    “Here we have a person who requires a high level of personal protection.”

    And this “high level of personal protection” is driving the locals crazy. In Ibach, the village where Navalny settled, they often rest. Other famous politicians have also been here, for example, former federal presidents Karl Carstens and Horst Koehler. However, there has never been such a “level of security”.

    The burgermeister is asking the community to keep calm and treat the new “inhabitant” of the village with respect. But the locals are unhappy. Kaiser says he has been receiving calls lately from the most disgruntled of the residents. They do not like the restrictions that have already been put in place because of the “high-ranking guest” of the village. For example, the police guarding Navalny have occupied the entire conference hall in the town hall and a hall in the village administration building has been taken over as Navalny’s headquarters . This means that for their music club and other entertainment and meetings, locals have had to find a new place…

    And finally, I should like to note that this article appeared in the German edition of the Augsburger Allgemeine Zeitung. And here is the title: “Trouble in the idyll: Alexei Navalny is resting in the Black Forest”.

    Below; the above mentioned Augsburger Allgemeine Zeitung article:

    Aufruhr im Idyll: Alexej Nawalny macht Urlaub im Schwarzwald

    The idyll is almost perfect. A village in the middle of the Black Forest. Pastoral landscapes, farms, cows. The local inn has company vacations, the restaurant a few hundred metres further on is only open on Fridays and weekends. During the week, guests are not expected. The village is surrounded by the extensive Hotzenwald, a picturesque hilly landscape in the Black Forest, which seems to spring from a picture book this morning, with sunshine and blue skies. Were it not for the many police vans in front of the community centre. A white station wagon stands at a curve: a man and a woman are sitting inside it, watching the road. Something like this stands out in the small village, where hardly any people are on the road.

    Shortly before, a man with a mask covering his mouth and nose and surrounded by bodyguards, had stepped out the door of a house and quickly got into one of two large black limousines. The two cars with black tinted windows have just left the village. The man is Aleksei Navalny, an enemy of the Russian state and victim of a poisoning. He has rented a vacation apartment in Ibach in Baden-Württemberg.

    The Hotzenwald

    Only given the respect that Navalny truly deserves — and I am sure that the Bullshitter would wholeheartedly agree with such a sentiment

    Liked by 1 person

      1. That should have been eur Ljoscha above, by the way — “your Lyosha” — not eure Ljoscha

        I mistakenly put a feminine nominative singular ending on “eur” because the friendly, familiar term for Aleksei, namely Лёша [Lyosha], is declined as a feminine noun though it is a masculine name. Similarly, Вова [Vova} is the friendly diminutive of Vladimir — NOT “Vlad”!!!! and is also declined as a femine noun.


        1. Bloody sick of typos!

          Euer Ljoscha!

          Viele Grüße aus Moskau — euer Moskauer Exil

          I tell you what though, I reckon the Germans will soon get pissed off with the arsing around of their government and this jackanapes of an imposter. I somehow don’t think the Germans have been dumbed down by years of US occupation of their country as much as those people in the UK have been.

          In my opinion, the British have been so taken over by the USA because they share a common language with the official one of the USA (sort of) and for that reason believe that US citizens are their “cousins” and have a cultural commonality. Well, that might have been the case until about the 1870s, but not now.

          This idea, I believe, was dreamt up in the late 19th century by the very prescient British PM Lord Salisbury, who, recognizing that the might of the British Empire was being overtaken by the USA and the founded in 1871 German Reich, albeit, territorially, the British Empire was yet to reach its zenith in the the late 1920s, Westminster started peddling the notion that the UK was “the mother country” to all former British imperial territories, including the USA of course, and that is why the phrase “Anglo-Saxon” is used for the former “white” colonies, a term that I abhor. I get sick of seeing “Anglo-Saxons” used for for the UK, USA and Australasia. Furthermore, the educated in the classics Lord Salisbury (as most PMs have been — the fool Johnson is one such member of the educated at Eton/Oxford in the classics political UK elite) and others put forward the notion that the British Empire was passing over the laurels, as it were, to its “Anglo-Saxon” inheritor, the USA, rather as they supposed the Roman Empire inherited the wisdom and expertise of the Hellenic “empire”. However, he link between “Anglo-Saxon” England and the USA, Canada, Australia, New Zealand, is now so historically tenuous, albeit, politically, this link is used for all its worth.

          Churchill was one of the chief culprits for furthering such “Anglo-Saxon world” shite. His mother was a US citizen, though mostly brought up and educated in France (her father, in any case, was of French Huguenot descent) and he even “wrote” (he used to dictate to scribes) a 4-volume tome “A History of the English Speaking Peoples” (one of his less successful literary ventures). So detached from reality was Churchill as regards his belief in the commonality of these “Anglo-Saxon peoples”, that he went on speaking tours to the USA at the turn of the 20th century, where he ranted on about his experiences in British South African war of 1899-1902, where he had been captured by the Boers whilst gathering good imperial “copy” for a London newspaper. Apparently, Churchill was rather put back when he perceived considerable Yankee anti-British sentiment when he did this speaking tour. I presume he didn’t realize that Roosevelt is a Dutch name. Teddy Roosevelt was of Dutch descent and was US president when Churchill was doing his reminiscences of the South African War speaking tour. Apparently, Teddy Roosevelt could not stand Churchill, which is at least one good point that he had.


    1. All that guff about ‘returning to Russia’ is a load of balls formulated to maintain his dissident credentials – why would Navalny go anywhere? He is treated like a visiting plenipotentiary and never has to so much as put his hand in his pocket – it’s all paid for! He is living his dream; recognition galore, and a luxurious lifestyle that is like being on vacation every day, with nothing more expected of him that he continue to live – and occasionally grumble that he must soon return to Russia, where legions of his oppressed people cry out for his leadership. If the aim of these lurid tales is to invoke fury over the sheer insult of their over-dramatizing, it is yet another successful western op.

      It’s like that cartoon I saw about Biden – “Joe Biden is not stupid. He has dementia. It is Biden voters who are stupid.” The stupid in this instance are any of those who lend any credence at all to the manufactured image of Navalny as Russian Robin Hood.


      1. If he stays in Germany, he may become as popular as Kremlin ball stapler Pyotr Pavlensky.* He may even piss off some important people.

        What about FEMEN in La France? Exactly. Maybe in the Ukraine baring your breasts publicly is ‘radical’, but in France? Hello? La Marianne? Once based on Brigitte Bardot’s tsistkis? Que nada.

        Can anyone guess why the famously ‘independent’ western media hasn’t followed and explained why both bombed? They don’t want to tell their readers that both were publically lionized because it shows the ‘illeberal East.’ Back home, boring! That’s just partisan bs, not journalism.



      2. За чей счет Навальный живет в Германии
        2020-10-18 12:45:00

        At whose expense does Navalny live in Germany?
        The collective West continues to use Navalny in its geopolitical intrigues. They have made the blogger a mouthpiece that trumpets anti-Russian slogans all over the place. Time after time, Navalny appears in the Western media and, like a worn-out record, repeats the same thesis that the Russian authorities are to blame for his poisoning. Today in his arsenal there are several foreign news media outlets to which he has given interviews: the BBC, Bild, The Economist and Spiegel. No matter how much Navalny says in his speeches that he will return to Russia, political scientists do not think so. Armen Gasparyan is sure that the blogger is threatened with the penal code criminal offence “High treason”. Naturally, such a prospect is not a nice one for Lyoshenka and can completely discourage his desire to return. Moreover, one can ask [when abroad] for donations from anywhere in the world. Now Navalny is in the German town of Ibach, which is guarded by the police. It is a presentable and expensive place, where access for a mere mortal is restricted. Navalny is being kept there at the expense of German taxpayers. As long as the Russian activist is needed by the West, he will be “serviced” first class and the media will be attracted by him so that his person be more surrounded by moiré interference patterns. For example, in Europe and the U.S., they are trying to present Navalny as a “‘victim of the Russian regime” or a world-renowned politician. But de facto he is neither.


    2. At the same time the German government has told the King of Thailand, who spends most of his year living in Bavaria, that he cannot conduct affairs of state pertaining to Thailand while resident in Germany. So why is Alexei Navalny allowed to set up a base, political in nature because of who and what he is, in Ibach?


      1. I think you know. Because his efforts are directed against the Russian government, andf he is ‘pro-democracy’, which is to say he is pro-letting-the-US-Department-of-State-run-the-country.


        1. Exactly. In addition, allowing Navalny to stay in Germany and encouraging and funding his activities in Moscow is just one step away from declaring him the legitimate leader of Russia. Juan Guaido may not have even had to do as much as Navalny did, and certainly did not have to put his health at risk, to be declared President of Venezuela – he only had to try to put together a bunch of thugs to carry out an attempted coup under the cover of a charity rock concert at Cucuta in early 2019 and couldn’t even manage that. (Though the Live Aid Venezuela stunt was a dismal failure anyway.)


          1. Boy, I would love to see that. The west declaring Navalny the ‘legitimate president’ of Russia would be a sterling addition to the list of grotesque failures of that policy; Juan Guaido and Svitlana Tikhonovskaya. Such an adventure would serve to cement the global apolitical assessment that western political leaders are mostly delusional crackpots who are likely to declare the head of any country’s biggest corporation that country’s president tomorrow, simply because it would further western interests, and that such gratuitous titles are completely meaningless. Which would be an accurate assessment.

            An obvious major obstacle to such a ridiculous attempt is Russia’s global power and wealth relative to that of Venezuela – the west tried to starve the Venezuelans into submission, and even that poor country would not bow and accept the western choice. Russia has already been the recipient of years of attempts to wreck its economy, and has grown significantly stronger and less dependent as a result. In Venezuela, Guaido had the support of a significant sector of the business community, which fancied itself growing fat on American trade. No such support exists for Navalny in Russia, where he is backed by a few eccentric intellectuals and a horde of angry kiddies.

            That’s why it would be all the more fun to see them try.


    1. Yes, gracious; that was a tearjerker.

      “Nick should be incredibly proud of all that he has achieved and will always be considered to be part of the Wiltshire Police family.

      “I am sure that as one chapter closes, another opportunity will open up for Nick.”

      What’s the bet that ‘other opportunity’ will involve travel to a far-distant land where nobody really knows where he is, and perhaps a change of identity?


      1. Perhaps a book publishing deal was wangled in front of DS Nick and the money was too good to pass up. Repeating the Putin-wot-dun-it narrative would rake in money from those eager to buy the book (including Luke Harding who will be sure to write a very glowing review, especially if he gets to ghost-write it).


  28. Mmmm…in a test to assess the proper disbursement of charitable funds, “Sergey Frolov, deputy editor-in-chief of the publication “Top Secret”, sent 10,000 editorial rubles via the Yandex-Money system to the personal account of Navalny’s chief of staff, Leonid Volkov, who announced a fundraising campaign to register a “future presidential candidate”.

    Of course, as the subject article points out, Navalny as a convicted felon could not legally run for the presidency, so no such campaign could come about. When Navalny’s candidacy became an acknowledged impossibility, Frolov asked for his money back. Can you guess what happened? Yes! A Navalny staffer finally contacted him, to tell him it had been spent on ‘fighting the regime’! Which was not the declared purpose of the solicitation, even if that claim is true, which there is no reason to believe it is.

    “The “Anti-corruption Fund” financial report for 2018 indicates that in the period from December 2016 to April 2018, the Fund collected donations for the nomination of Aleksey Navalny for President in the amount of 372,775,000 rubles, which disappeared from the Fund’s accounts, and the fate of which is unknown.”


      1. Ha, ha!! Yes, that’s true, and more than one person has come to grief because of it. I know of at least one individual whom I believed when he said he transferred government funds to his personal account solely as a convenience, never thinking of the perception it might inspire. In that instance, no money was spent on anything, it was merely transferred. But that was enough to sink him.

        It’s amusing in a way to watch the entire western political and economic system studiously and resolutely ignoring the blinking-red signals of fiscal impropriety in Navalny – he is a shyster, plain and simple, and there is no end of circumstantial evidence. As we are well aware, circumstantial evidence is quite enough to start the media’s tongues clacking in their heads when the subject is anyone looked on by the powerful with disfavour. But divil a word where Navalny is concerned, the munificent and noble anti-corruption sensation. The truly funny part is that Navalny correctly interprets this reluctance to notice his baser qualities as a license to steal more. He’s in Germany, others are paying the bills, and he’s above reproach – could life be sweeter?


        1. Life will be sweet indeed for Navalny as long as he doesn’t use the same tactics he used in Russia to embezzle money from individuals and companies in Germany to maintain his and his family’s current lifestyle. I doubt though that he can or will change his ways. It’s just a matter of time before he embarrasses his host nation or causes a conflict between Berlin and Washington through his behaviour.


    1. I read a few days ago that some seniour German said that pipeline gas is still preferable to American LNG because the latter is bad for the environment as it is produced by dirty fracking. That’s a perfectly legitimate argument and based on current German and EU policy.


      1. Yes, most of it is from fracking and very dirty. Also the US fracking industry is collapsing. It always was more of a Ponzi scheme than anything. It has huge debts and no apparent hope of ever being profitable.

        I cannot remember what one would need as a gas price but IIRC the industry needs at least US$100 or so for oil to break even.


    1. Alexey Navalny: It’s a banned substance. I think for Putin– why– he’s using this chemical weapon to do– do both, kill me and, you know, terrify others. It’s something really scary, where the people just drop dead without– there are no gun. There are no shots and in a couple of hours, you– you’ll be dead and without any traces on your body. It’s something terrifying. And Putin is enjoying it.

      So am I. It’s very intriguing, the constant plot twists – Navalny is recorded live ‘moaning in anguish’…but he was not in any pain! Perhaps the very thought of such an amazing human being and exceptional leader – himself, naturally – struck down in his prime was just so sorrowful that he could not stifle his sadness.

      It’s ‘something really scary’, is it? Why? So far nearly everyone poisoned by it has survived with no apparent medium-to-long-term damage. The deadliest toxin in the world by a wide margin has so far managed to kill one barbag who was also a drug addict, and completely incidentally – she was not ever a target.

      According to the Russian record of its use as a murder weapon, though, on the sole known occasion it was so used, it killed the target in just a few hours. It also killed his secretary, who used the same phone to call an ambulance, and the pathologist who did his autopsy.

      So whoever is copying Novichok for its terror effects is not doing a very good job. Like Porsche, there is no substitute.


      1. The “moaning in anguish” was likely Navalny’s theatrical assumption that Novichok creates intense pain. When he learned, after his performance, that Novichok does not create intense pain, he changed his story on the fly.

        This, and a few other things, brings up an interesting conjecture. The Navalny stunt may have been a free-lance operation done without prior knowledge of Western intelligence agencies. He and his posse concocted the scheme betting that the the US and Germany would be backed into a corner and had to play along. They really had no choice as they could not abandon this asset without the entire “fearless opposition to the tyrant Putin” collapsing into the cesspool it was built upon.

        If so, it was an audacious move that only a sociopath could do. However, it does suggest that Navalny is finished after the last bit of propaganda value is wrung out. His future could be either termination under a convenient pretext (i.e. Putin finally got him) or to become a professor of BS at some US University or the like. The main point is that he is too unreliable to conduct further operations.


        1. I think the whole thing was a carefully-concocted operation that Lyosha was fully briefed-in on. His howls and screams would have been necessary in any case, with or without pain, because it was imperative that all on board be convinced that a terrible event was taking place and that emergency actions were absolutely called for. It’s hard to imagine the same dramatic effect could have been achieved by Navalny flopping out of the toilet like a gaffed bass, and whispering to the flight attendant, “I just have this feeling that says body, we are done”. Everyone including the flight attendant would assume he was drunk or something that was no particular cause for alarm, and maybe even for amusement. Until they learned that the flight was being diverted so this fuckwad could get off.


          1. I don’t know and I don’t care who’s cuning plan this was. It’s got him all the publicity he needs and also those in the west with their standard ‘no smoke without fire’ level of foreign policy ‘evidence.’ I think he’s actually looking to sell his life story for a Netflix series. Nothing else makes logical sense.


        2. Yes, maybe — apart from the fact that one of his posse is British agent who has been controlling FBK investigations into corruption for quite a while now and apparently was stuck to Navalny during his last foray into the provinces like shit to an army blanket.


          1. To Mark and ME;
            The Navalny show still has an ad hoc feel to it. Perhaps the plot extended beyond those who directly participated but I don’t think it was a high level operation. Navalny took a gamble that his sponsors would have no choice but to follow his lead. It now makes no practical difference as to whom planned it.

            Liked by 1 person

            1. It’s possible that Navalny’s Omsk-to-Berlin caper was intended to change continually so as to paper over what the original plan might have been and dissipate any responsibility for it. It’s continually being made up on the fly. Every time there’s a new development, it is milked for all its propaganda value and then discarded when an opportunity for another plot twist arises. The fact that the narrative as it develops makes no sense at all could be part of the general plan: as Karl Rove noted, while everyone puzzles over how all the different pieces of past history are supposed to fit, reality keeps creating and recreating itself anew and all we can do is try to catch up.


  29. More proof that Trump is a Kremlin Stooge?

    Навальный пожаловался, что Трамп не осудил произошедший с ним инцидент
    19.10.2020 | 07:59

    Navalny has complained that Trump has not condemned what happened to him
    19.10.2020 | 07:59

    Blogger Aleksei Navalny has expressed the opinion that US President Donald Trump should have also condemned what happened to him, as did European politicians, TASS reports.

    “I think it is especially important that everyone, including, and perhaps first and foremost, the US president, speak out against the use of chemical weapons in the 21st century”, Navalny said.

    [«Я думаю, что особенно важно, чтобы все, включая и, возможно, в первую очередь президента США, выступили против применения химического оружия в XXI веке».]

    On August 20, Navalny was taken to a hospital in Omsk after he had fallen ill on an aeroplane. Omsk doctors said that the main diagnosis was metabolic disorders. Then Navalny was transported to Germany. He was in a coma for two weeks. German doctors announced that he had been poisoned with substances from the Novichok group. Russia has asked Berlin for more detailed information on the test results, but has not yet received a response.

    Currently, Navalny has been discharged from the hospital and is undergoing rehabilitation.

    Big gobbed gobshite shouting his big gob off — or did his US controllers really urge him to make that statement? Is the CIA really using him as part of the Democrats “Russiagate” arsenal?


    1. Got it in one; I was going to say, until I read your last couple of lines, that this is further suggestion that Navalny is a Democratic project. The US State Department is full of Democratic appointees. They want to get all the mileage out of him they can before interest fades.


  30. Американские СМИ показали охрану Навального (видео)
    Сегодня, 09:18

    American media has shown the security cover provided for Navalny (video)
    Today, 09:18
    Russian opposition leader Alexei Navalny gave an interview to an American TV channel. The footage showed his security cover. In addition, Navalny lamented in the dialogue that Trump had not condemned his poisoning, reports NUR.KZ.

    In this article linked above, Navalny is quoted as having said:

    “Я заметил, что (Трамп) этого не сделал. Я считаю чрезвычайно важным, чтобы все, в том числе, а может и в первую очередь, президент США, были категорически против использования химического оружия в XXI веке”.

    [“I have noticed that (Trump) did not do this. I think it is extremely important that everyone, including, and perhaps in the first place, the President of the United States, be categorically against the use of chemical weapons in the 21st century.”]

    He is also quoted in the above linked article as having said:

    “Я не чувствую страха, кроме страха за детей. Это ужасная мысль, если они попытаются использовать этот “Новичок” где-нибудь около моей квартиры, куда приходят мои дети. Дверь или что-то в этом роде, каждый может к ней прикоснуться”.

    [“I don’t feel any fear other than fear for my children. It’s a terrible thought if they try to use this ‘Novichok’ anywhere near my apartment, where my children come. A door or anything like that, anyone can touch it.” ]

    Shades of the Skripal case? Doorknobs and doorhandles treated with “Novichok”

    How about including the toilet seat, bullshitter? ?

    One of his children, by the way, is not resident in Moscow but in San Francisco, studying, allegedly, free of charge at Stanford. And he no longer has an apartment in Moscow: his former apartment was seized by bailiffs under court order a few weeks ago.

    So he had no fear and felt no pain, but he was rolling around screaming on the aircraft deck.

    Why aren’t super-sleuth “investigative journalists” blowing huge holes in this steaming mound of contradictory bullshit that chief Bullshitter is persistently spewing out?


    1. If you can bear watching this gobshite talk:


      1. Miraculously, he recovered from the poison that is so dangerous people fear to mention its name, for fear that doing so might encourage tongue cancer, and is today fit as a flea; can’t wait to return to Russia for Round Two. If they were wise, they’d kill Lyosha themselves for his stem cells. Then world leaders could be protected against Russian assassination attempts.

        Liked by 1 person

    2. Certainly capitalizing on his new-found fame, isn’t he? Now he feels comfortable telling the US president how he ought to behave, and chiding him for not appropriately recognizing Navalny’s importance to the world. Dear God, what a swellheaded prat.

      If the Chief Bullshitter really feels so concerned for the safety of his family, he will leave them all abroad and return to Russia alone – I mean, he’s not a bit afraid for himself, he’s said as much. Go on, Lyosha – go back home and rally the great restless throng of oppressed ordinary Russians who cry out for your leadership!!

      Not on your life. He’s got the sweetest gig ever going on right there, newspapers beating a path to his door to find out what he likes to eat for breakfast and whose shirts he wears, no worries about income or housing, hobnobbing with world leaders who listen respectfully to his opinions, and all he has to do is rant about Putin all day long. The Americans are finally getting their money’s worth out of Lyosha. Whereas what would happen if he went home?

      It would quickly become clear that his support still comes exclusively from the same group – a few disaffected intelligentsia such as Boris Akunin, the Atlanticist liberatsi who endlessly predict the collapse of Putin, and the angry kiddies who feel like they are part of some great Thunberg-like global freedom movement that will bring them a comfortable life but absolve them of responsibility for working for it – you know; the way they live in America!


  31. Like

    1. Bla, bla, bla, says Alexey Navalny, reading from the script of Washingtonian grievances. Suddenly the world cannot get enough Navalny. I wonder if anyone has assessed whether he can sing – maybe they could get him to record a new version of ‘Candle in the Wind’.


  32. Like

  33. Like

    1. Yes, the very thing they are probably thinking right at this moment is who to poison next with this distinctive nerve agent that screams “Putin’s personal weapon”, but doesn’t kill anyone. What’s next for Navalny – being hit on the head with a Nerf hammer by Shoigu?


  34. A response to the “60 Minutes” Navalny interview from one of the God-fearing sons of the Home of the Brave:


  35. Article 275 of the Criminal Code “High treason” certainly applies as regards the actions of Lyosha Navalny , as does article 128.1 of the Russian Criminal Code on “Slander” …

    But as I have already said more than once, if Alyosha is issued with a foreign passport by the Presidential Administration of the Russian Federation, and Alyosha himself repeatedly violates laws and remains free whilst concurrently serving two suspended sentences, this means that someone needs him — so much so that even these mountains of shit, which thanks to his diligence have been poured on Russia in recent months, also do not count.

    There is such a term “protest sewerage”. It was born of German politicians in the ’50s of the last century as a tool to counter protests against social injustice and militarization. And it proved to be surprisingly effective. Roughly speaking, individual cadres were allowed a lot in exchange for their discrediting protest movements. In Russia, Navalny has long been playing this role, whilst feathering his own nest here and there. And as time passed, a big problem for Lyosha’s curators was his close work with the CIA. And the threat through Navalny to such a global project as Nord Stream 2 makes not only Navalny himself, but also these very “curators” traitors to the Motherland.



  36. A line of German cops following the “Oppositionsführer” at a safe distance near the Brandenburg Gate, Berlin.

    Navalny is now undergoing R&R under the watchful eyes of a sizable police presence at a Black Forest village, situated some 500 miles southwest of Berlin..

    How much is this freak show costing the German taxpayer, I wonder?

    Liked by 1 person

    1. That strikes me more as a chance shot of some uniformed personnel accidentally in the photo. Do security people usually line up several metres away from their charge?


      1. Uh huh; in snipers’ dreams. Pretty hard to take a bullet for the boss when you’re several meters from him.

        Maybe there has been a revolution in bodyguards’ rights while we weren’t looking.


        1. You never know, there could still be more diluted Novichok hidden dormant in Navalny’s pancreas that the Omsk hospital, Charite hospital and Bundeswehr military hospital doctors all have not detected. That hidden Novichok is liable to activate and start poisoning him again, and those bodyguards might have been warned to keep a safe distance away in case they accidentally touch him or smell his body odour and keel over stone dead.


  37. Actually, I think his companions in the still above are US “journalists”.

    I have not watched the “60 Minutes” clips that I have posted above because I cannot stand listening to the bastard, let alone when he spews out his bullshit in English. So in the clip from which the above still has been taken, the masked persons to the left and right of him and his statuesque wife may be “60 Minutes” American propagandists “journalists”.


  38. What is all this Navalny publicity tour for?

    The American/ European audience or the Russian audience

    Is he going to be promoted like Juan Guaido ?

    He just looks like a paid puppet on an anti-Russia tour.

    All these stage managed images and interviews.

    I am finding it difficult to see the point in all this.

    In my view – he is best ignored by the government
    Report in detail his disloyal behaviour – but nothing more.


    1. Not aimed at the Russian audience, definitely not.

      It serves as a pretext for more sanctions for those looking for any excuse and to force public officials to “condemn” Russia. I am 100% sure Trump is on to the game so his decision will be solely based on political expediency. If he believes he can win the election, he is likely thinking that he can not jump on the bandwagon thus will not join the Putin bashing party.


    2. Easy to say, but I’m pretty sure if you were accused of something heinous and knew you were not guilty, that ample evidence was available to prove it but that it was being kept from you while the accusations went on and on…that establishing your innocence would be a priority for you. Even when your attempts fell on deaf ears. Because perhaps the hardest thing, for a group or individual accused of something, is to know you did not do it, but keep silent and allow your accusers a free hand.

      I imagine Washington would love to declare Navalny the ‘legitimate President of the Russian Federation”, and its musing on what a wonderful world it would be if Joe Biden was President of the United States and Navalny was President of Russia might well b e a tentative trial balloon to see what public opinion makes of it. But it is not a very realistic possibility, for a couple of reasons. One, Washington already has a pair of governments-in-waiting that it is supporting, to little or no effect, and adding another risks introducing too many balls for the juggler to keep in the air, plus the resulting loss of confidence in Washington as a game-changer that makes its own rules. Two, whatever blabber the media generates, the real power-brokers know Navalny has no significant support at home, and that trying to foist him on the Russian people over their clear preference for the present leader has no hope of succeeding.

      They will have to continue with the make-believe for yet awhile, and hope for an opportunity.


  39. A pretty impressive but utterly useless display:

    These guys flying jet packs that require use of hands to point the auxiliary jets for a modicum of control will be more vulnerable than clay pigeons. The noise alone will alert any vessels within a few miles that they are coming.

    I suppose that they could board a very large vessel at night that has been commandeered by a few pirates without certainty of being shot down.

    A far more useful application would be as part of a rescue team to bring aboard a small vessel in distress urgently needed supplies or a trained EMT. Seems like a drone could do the same.


    1. Wow. You can fly in still or light airs from a carrier vessel that is right alongside – I wonder what prospective boarding candidate is going to permit that? Added to the criticism you have already pointed out that the ‘iron man’ is already quite busy controlling his direction and altitude, and is essentially defenseless. A speed of 200 mph or less is like an engraved invitation to a Gatling-gun style air defense system like Phalanx or Goalkeeper, and you would not have to hit a man in a rubber suit very often with a 20mm round to make him lose interest – Goalkeeper is a 30mm system if I remember correctly, and consequently would be even less encouraging. For purposes of comparison, a .50 cal round that would lift you right out of your shoes is a .127mm.

      There’s no denying it is interesting technology that should stimulate discussion and ideas, but a clever new system which will revolutionize opposed boarding it is not, not yet. There might be rescue applications as you suggested, but it does not look like the system has enough lift to carry the operator plus average deadweight.


      1. The Iron Man flyboys work well in sunny weather with little wind but I wonder how well they will fare in heavier weather when visibility will be poor and landing platforms may not be stable. Shouldn’t these Iron Man pilots also have better face and eye protection against the elements?


  40. Even more nonsensical that the jet-pack warriors mentioned above

    The US Army is developing a new cannon it claims will have a range of more than 1,000 miles, writes Popular Mechanics.
    The Strategic Long Range Cannon (SLRC) is touted as potentially being able to strike targets at up to 1,150 miles (1,850 km) away and fire 50 times farther than existing guns.

    Earlier, the outlet had published leaked photos of the SLRC, touted as able to bring about a revolutionary breakthrough in artillery warfare.

    Super duper long range artillery has been tried in the past:

    A 1,000 mile range would require a trajectory that would peak at hundreds of miles. The shell must use rocket assist and include various electronics for guidance. It would required heat shielding to resist high temperatures during reentry into the atmosphere. The shell may leave the muzzle at a few thousand mph but need to accelerate to a much high velocity using a rocket. If the shell weighs, say, 200 pounds, then warhead certainly could not weigh more than 50 pounds with the balance being the rocket, heat shield, fins and actuators for steering and guidance electronics.

    You’d think they would have learned their lessons from the Zumwalt destroyer long range gun debacle:

    Up to $1 million per round for a gun with far less capability than now being proposed.

    The main purposes are to keep the artillery boys happy and to keep the cash flow river to the MIC running deep and fast.


    1. Why would you need super-duper long-range artillery when you, uh, already have missiles?

      These artillery designers probably need to be given projects recreating the US Civil War (1860 – 1865) to keep them gainfully employed and occupied. At least they won’t waste as much money and the casualties would be zero.


      1. Missiles are expensive, and generally with artillery pieces it is the gun which is expensive while the ammunition is not. Early in its modern iteration, the Royal Navy announced it was getting rid of deck guns altogether, and its new (at the time) Type 22 (BROADSWORD Class) frigate would be all-missile – she had Excocets for her main battery, and Sea Wolf for air defense. They were not long modifying the design to include a deck gun. Canada and Australia are relatively-wealthy nations, yet they only fire off a real missile for training about once every four years.

        Artillery is cheap, and for the Army it is indispensable because keeping the enemy constantly under fire is an important part of breaking his will. The further away you can do that from, the less susceptible your artillery forces are to counterfire.


        1. As Patient Observer … patiently observes, a 1,000-mile (1,600-km) range would require the shell to use electronics and other navigation / guidance assistance and heat shielding to stop it from breaking up during re-entry into the atmosphere (and presumably some other protection while it is partially in space), all of which place weight limitations on how much incendiary material can be packed into the warhead. Designing the ammunition to endure such a trajectory, with all the stresses on the materials and electronics arising from rapid changes in speed, air pressure, temperature and gravity associated with it, could cost as much as designing a missile.

          What would be the recoil on a long gun that fires such ammunition and how would such a gun be operated to avoid recoil accidents and explosions in its immediate area? There wouldn’t be much point in having a long gun with massive recoil because then you’d have to clear a huge area around it and such an area could be easily identified by the enemy’s drones or satellites.


          1. If you double the length of the barrel, you halve the acceleration of the shell. Base bleed helps exhaust gases.

            At 22 years old, Dr. Gerald Bull was Canada’s youngest-ever PHD. He designed artillery pieces in the late 60’s/early 70’s which still outrange NATO artillery, and are more accurate. He believed, early in his research, that a range of 5,500 km was achievable with a gun-fired projectile, and some of the design work he did on ballistic technology and payloads is still secret. By extraordinary measures he was made an American citizen, and guess what? After that, everything he built was ‘American technology’.

            This program coyly suggests nobody knows to this day who murdered Dr. Bull as he exited the elevator of his Brussels apartment building , shooting him multiple times with a silenced weapon. But it was ‘very likely’ to have been the Israelis, and they were ‘very likely’ to have carried out the operation with the full knowledge of the United States. A short prison sentence for illegal arms dealing had so embittered Bull that he swore he would never again set foot in North America, and his customers were pretty much anyone who could pay – South Africa, China, and Saddam Hussein’s Iraq. The gun he built for Iraq whose sections were intercepted by the British would likely have been capable of a new record for range, but to the best of my knowledge, it was never fired, or even assembled.

            Bull’s modified howitzers, regularly used to great effect in combat, could accurately fire an explosive projectile more than 45 km. Although that’s a long way from 1,600 km, it is just a matter of scale and if you know when you fire where the shell is going to land, there is no need for any other guidance – it’s just ballistics. Obviously you cannot fire an unguided projectile at a moving target you can’t see, so such a weapon would be used against targets which don’t move. Like cities. A cellular-phone connection and a spotter who can see the shell impact point are all you need to correct your fire.


  41. SkyNudes: US charges six Russian hackers over global attacks that hit Novichok probe, French elections and Winter Olympics

    …”It went on to target broadcasters, a ski resort, Olympic officials and sponsors of the games in 2018. The GRU deployed data-deletion malware against the Winter Games IT systems and targeted devices across the Republic of Korea using VPNFilter.”

    The Russian hackers’ alleged attempt to cover their tracks included using certain snippets of code and techniques to try to confuse investigators into think they were from China and North Korea.

    The UK’s National Cyber Security Centre, a branch of GCHQ, believe Russia’s aim was to sabotage the running of the games, the Foreign Office said….

    So as usual, nothing but the Foreign Orifice’s word and they wouldn’t make stuff up, especially on order when the governement is under heavy domestic pressure? No. Never.

    I wonder if Tokyo has been asked for comment or given ‘evidence?’ Again, absence of information gives it away.

    Other outlets are putting out this FO press release with little comment, as usual.


    1. “The Russian hackers’ alleged attempt to cover their tracks included using certain snippets of code and techniques to try to confuse investigators into think they were from China and North Korea.”

      Just by the most marvelous coincidence, other bogus source codes in the Marble Framework tickle trunk are those of China, North Korea and Iran.

      So what do we have now? The CIA imitating Russia imitating China and North Korea? Oh, what a tangled web we weave, when first we practice to deceive.


  42. The lefty presidential candidate in Boliva has won the Presidency election in the first round!

    Al-Beeb s’Allah: Bolivia election: Evo Morales’s ally Luis Arce set for win

    A quick count suggests socialist candidate Luis Arce of the Mas party is set to win Bolivia’s presidential election in the first round.

    The second-placed candidate, Carlos Mesa, has conceded defeat and called Mr Arce’s 20-percentage-point lead in the quick-count “unassailable”.

    Mr Arce, an ally of exiled former President Evo Morales, says he will form a “government of national unity”.

    The country is still deeply divided after last year’s annulled election…

    But a) will Washingon accept it & b) not sabotage the new government?


  43. Well, well – hello, Chrystia Freeland, I’d like you to meet Andrzej Duda, President of Poland. What, your Grampy was a Nazi collaborator, too?? You’re kidding me – why, we’re like brother and sister!!

    “Polish President Andrzej Duda pursues a Russophobic policy and actively supports Ukrainian nationalists, because one of his ancestors was a Nazi collaborator who served the Nazi invaders and took part in the massacres on the territory of Belarus.

    Ukrainian publicist Miroslava Berdnik, previously persecuted by the SBU, reported this in her Telegram channel, the correspondent of PolitNavigator reports.”


    1. Why the ginormous teleprompter far from the podium? Why, so it would look like he is speaking unaided in media coverage! This is the only occurrence that I could find that showed this little helper for his enfeebled mind. Shss! Need to keep it a secret.

      I wonder if will be used if he takes the Oath of Office in January.


      1. The uncomfortable but inescapable conclusion is that Joe Biden does not have to know any facts, does not have to recall any statistics or memorize any dialogue – he only needs to be able to read. And he is far from the only one to abandon the off-the-cuff speech for the science of the teleprompter and other tricks which sharply reduce the chances you will be stuck for words, or say something foolish. George ‘Dubya’ Bush was quite well-known for using electronic aids to remotely coach his public speaking, from the eerie pre-delivery of his D-Day speech (which has been erased from the internet, as far as I can make out, although there were once examples of what the White House claims was an ‘echo’. They could not explain how the ‘echo’ was heard in the microphone before Bush spoke the same words a half-second later) to the mysterious bulge in the back of his suit jacket during his debates with John Kerry.

        If you watch Bush’s remarks during his uncharacteristically-eloquent speech in France on the anniversary of D-Day, he speaks oddly, in short phrases which are probably meant to imply deep emotion, but more likely represent the longest sentence he could deliver without needing further prompting. He has no other aids to speaking; the paper he is seen smoothing out at the beginning is merely his introductory remarks and routine courtesies to guests and his host. He never refers to it again once he begins his speech, and occasionally pauses with his head cocked as if he is listening.

        You can’t hear anything in this audio except the voice of Bush himself, but there was once no shortage of audio records in which another voice can be heard speaking before Bush. Ironically, Bush toadies left over from his administration were among those who most loudly and derisively referred to Obama as ‘President Teleprompter’.


      2. The speech is being recorded for a later TV or social media presentation. Crowd noises and applause to be added later by the TV network or social media company.


  44. YES!! This.

    We all like to have our worldview affirmed by a corroborating voice, even if that, too, is an opinion. This, for me, was like lying back in a hot bath.

    I have said as far back as I can remember, during Pompeo’s tenure as Giant Blasphemous Cream Puff of State, that the damage he was doing to the relationship between America and her allies was significant and perhaps irreparable. The article, if accurate, reveals a China which is quite a bit like Russia in its official treatment of minorities – subordinate ethnicities are recognized as distinct societies if their population meets a reasonable threshold, and where an ethnic population is regionally dominant, an autonomous government is established to facilitate local governance by people of the same ethnic background.

    I was not aware that during the term of China’s one-child policy – a dreadful time which led to the abortion or other more-horrible disposals of unwanted baby girls – mothers among ethnic minorities were permitted two or even three children.

    The article is obviously written in defense of China, but the authors seem to have substantiated their claims satisfactorily where such material is offered. Unsubstantiated opinion is often a close match with those offered by commenters on this forum.


    1. George Koo linked to a Youtube video of Mike Pompeous and the Croatian Prime Minister Andrej Plenkovic at a press conference in Dubrovnik. Watch how Plenkovic deals with Pompeosity!

      I swear I saw the Pompous One deflate considerably after Plenkovic’s speech about China’s BRI initiative. Good thing the wind was up and active otherwise the smell would have been horrific and everyone would have been knocked unconscious.


  45. Mike Pompeo, otherwise known as the international man of catastrophe,…

    You knew it was going to be good from the first sentence.


  46. Here’s part of a typical blog from a Navalnyite rubberduckian:

    Три места, где Путин с разгромным счетом проигрывает Навальному
    2 days ago

    Three places where Putin has crushingly lost to Navalny

    The time has come when Putin has begun to lose to Navalny.

    I don’t know, maybe it’s a sad thing,, maybe vice versa, for the better, but it is as it is …

    Below, I will tell you about three things where Navalny is superior to Putin, quite superior.

    1. Sincere support of the residents of Russia

    I don’t know about you, but I live on the Internet and I see life here, with all openness, publicity and the impossibility of hiding something from someone.

    So, that very openness helped me see things as they really are.

    And the very likes and dislikes that are placed under the posts published on behalf of Putin and Navalny are one example of the genuine sincere feelings of citizens.

    If someone does not know, then hundreds of thousands of dislikes are put under Putin’s appeals and as many bad comments are written, but under some of Navalny’s posts you can see millions of likes. Isn’t this love of the 21st century?

    Written by a juvenile, I suspect: note the use of “millions” of supportive comments for the Bullshitter and “hundreds of thousands” of unsupportive ones for Putin.

    Schoolkid tosser or immature kreakl.


    1. Yes, that’s what life’s all about now – getting ‘likes’ for whatever you say on the Internet. I think when I am President of the Russian Federation, I will pay every Russian a stipend of $75,000.00 a year, so that nobody has to go to work! Likelikelikelike.

      Only a child could imagine that ‘seeing life on the internet’ is seeing life for the way it is, or that it represents ‘the impossibility of hiding something’; dear God, it is the exact opposite, where ‘Gay Girl in Damascus’ can collect hundreds of thousands of followers who feel inspired by her although she is a Scottish man in his thirties, and Albed Banana is fluent in English.


    2. Why would the tyrant allow hundreds of thousands of dislikes while his dreaded nemesis is allowed millions of likes? Troll farms anyone? Interference in Russian politics by a foreign power?


  47. A cover story but for what?

    And here is the press release:

    October Surprise (running out of time on that one)? Preparation in some form for civil unrest after the election? Collecting internet chatter from home WiFi routers?


    1. The ACLU is already on it, complaining in a lawsuit – filed on behalf of a protester with a very Russian-sounding name – that the military is using low-flying helicopters and ‘rotor wash’ to intimidate and harass protesters.

      I daresay Trump is prepared for insurrection if he wins another term – the Democrats have been fertilizing the discourse with allegations that Trump has said he will not leave the White House if he loses the election, preparing the American people for the torches-and-pitchforks march to cast out the interloper. I believe Trump has expressed concerns that the mail-in vote will be used to steal the election, but so far as I am aware he has never said he will not leave the White House if he has demonstrably lost. Why would he? It’s a fucking horrible job, and he’s rich – it’s not like he needs the money.

      I honestly don’t think Biden has a hope, and I personally think the Democratic strategists are worried as well. That’s why they are preparing something unprecedented in America – a colour revolution to depose a sitting president.


      1. he [Trump] has never said he will not leave the White House if he has demonstrably lost. Why would he? It’s a fucking horrible job, and he’s rich

        It seems up for discussion if he really is rich. I get the feeling he is more of financial juggler than a rich man and he may have one too many balls in the air.

        Once he is no longer President he loses his legal immunity at the Federal level plus it becomes easier for state attorneys general, such as Cyrus Vance Jr of New York to press charges at the state level.

        He could be in for a world of hurt once he is back to being a private citizen.


        1. If Trump loses the election, and New York state turns out solidly Democrat, he may relocate to Florida or another state that consistently votes Republican. States with Republican legislatures and governors might be less likely to press any charges of mishandling the COVID-19 pandemic or anything else he has not done well or has done badly against him.

          Most of what he has supposedly done according to the MSM such as colluding with Moscow has never been decisively proved to have occurred.

          I understand that the running of his businesses was turned over to Donald Trump Jr and Eric Trump and if DJT senior has anything to fear, he may leave the management of Trump Corporation and its offshoot businesses to his sons and take up a “consultancy” role with the corporation, with a regular salary (that may mask other arrangements agreed on a handshake, a wink and a nod) and a roof (a very long and wide one and several tens of floors off the ground perhaps) over his head. DJT is likely to know that trailer loads of shit are in store to be flung at him once he leaves the Presidency and he may already be preparing for them. Do not be surprised if all of a sudden he decides to disappear of his own volition.

          The Democrats can’t hurt him too much or they would risk being called hypocrites even within their own circles. Even they have to look into the mirror first thing in the morning, however late that is. The New York Times and Washington Post can only protect the Dems so much before they start losing subscribers.


  48. Did you not see this little gem from the US Embassy in Kiev last week?

    The woman speaking above is a certain Col. Brittany Stewart, Military Attaché to the U.S. Embassy in Kiev.

    Yet another American woman doing a man’s job! 🙂

    The Russian Ministry of Defence was none too pleased with Colonel Stewart’s little performance:

    16.10.2020 (14:30)
    Defence Attaché to the U.S. Embassy in Moscow has been informed about the position of the Russian Ministry of Defence

    On October 16, the Defence Attaché to the U.S. Embassy in Moscow was invited to the Russian Federation Ministry of Defence Main Directorate for International Military Cooperation.

    The US Department of Defence representative was informed about the position of the Russian Ministry of Defence with regards to a recent statement made by the Military Attaché to the U.S. Embassy in Kiev, Air Force Col. Brittany Stewart, on the joint efforts of the US and Ukrainian Armed Forces in countering so-called “Russian aggression”.

    The American side was briefed on the false claims of the statement and its provocative nature, which compels the Ukrainian side to a military resolution of the internal conflict in the Donbass.

    The above mentioned statement is contradictory to previous declarations made by Pentagon officials on a settlement of the situation in the Ukraine by peaceful means only.

    [Edited by Moscow Exile because of grammatical and punctuation errors in the above-linked Russian -English statement, although the Russian Ministry of Defence did spell “defence” correctly! :-)]

    “We congratulate the defenders of the Ukraine. Thank them for their self-sacrifice and for taking risks every day”, she says in an East Slav dialect, noting that during their visit to the Ukraine, US Deputy Secretary of State Stephen Bigan and US Secretary of State Michael Pompeo had visited memorials to fallen soldiers, “because it was these soldiers who had sacrificed themselves to help protect the democracy, sovereignty and territorial integrity of the Ukraine”.

    “The USA is and will be your indestructible partner”, emphasized the Colonel Stewart.

    Have a nice day, suckers!


  49. Hit them where it hurts!

    20 Октября 2020 23:18
    Пригожин подал новые иски против Навального, Соболь и Волкова

    20 October 2020 23:18
    Prigozhin filed new lawsuits against Navalny, Sobol and Volkov

    Pro-Kremlin businessman Yevgeny Prigozhin is again suing opposition leader Aleksei Navalny, lawyer of the Anti-Corruption Foundation (FBK) Lyubov Sobol and FBK project manager Leonid Volkov. All statements relate to the protection of his honour, dignity and business reputation. Copies of the claims have been published by the press service of the Concord Group.

    The lawsuits against Navalny and Sobol are linked to a video on the “Navalny Live” YouTube channel. Prigozhin disagrees with the fact that he is associated with the private military company Wagner, receives corrupt orders from the Ministry of Defence, and is also involved in the poisoning of Navalny.

    The lawsuit against Volkov concerns the posts of the politician on social networks. “The information contains allegations that the plaintiff: is a particularly dangerous criminal; the organizer and actual perpetrator of the murder of journalists [Orkhan] Dzhemal, [Aleksander] Rastorguev and [Kirill] Radchenko in the Central African Republic two years ago; and maintains a private military company responsible for the loss of hundreds of human lives and untold suffering”, the statement said.

    Note that Prigozhin has long been suing representatives of FBK. For example, in October last year, the Moscow Arbitration Court ordered that Aleksei Navalny remove from his YouTube channel a video about the “Moscow Schoolboy” school meals organization and refute the defamatory information about the company. The court ruled that there be recovered from from Navalny, FBK and the author of the investigation, FBK lawyer Lyubov Sobol, 29 million rubles each in favour of “Moscow Schoolboy”. At the end of July, Navalny announced that he would liquidate FBK because of this court decision. In response, Prigozhin transferred 1 million rubles to the FBK account “as a donation”. Navalny later reported that FBK had returned the money to Prigozhin.

    Later it became known that Evgeny Prigozhin’s Concord company had bought the oppositionists’ “Moscow Schoolboy” debt, which meant that he intended to collect the debt directly in his favour [meaning that Navalny now directly owes him the money and that Prigozhin has the Bullshitter by the balls; small wonder that he was “poisoned” by Novichok and had to go to Germany, where he was miraculously cured and still remains — ME]. “I intend to strip the members of this group of unscrupulous people of their clothes and shoes”, said Prigozhin.

    FBK lawyer Lyubov Sobol said that the bailiffs had already blocked over 34 million rubles in her accounts, including 29 million rubles as debt collection to Prigozhin. In addition, bailiffs blocked 30.3 million rubles in the accounts of the Anti-Corruption Fund.


    1. As mentioned before, acquisition of the rights to the original case against Navalny’s mouseketeers was genius. The logical endpoint should be driving them to bankruptcy. And, even sweeter, perhaps, is the possibility that anyone bailing out the intrepid mouseketeers could find themselves on the hook as facilitator and funder of the libelling.



      1. If I were Volkhov, I’d be nervous. Sooner or later someone is going to have to actually die from Novichok poisoning if it is to maintain any credibility as a threat; as it is, it is getting a bit farcical for all these dissidents to be poisoned with the deadliest toxin known to man, only to shake it off and miraculously recover. If Team Navalny has to make a choice between Sobol and Volkhov, well, Navalny does have a weakness for blondes.


    2. I don’t understand – why did Navalny liquidate FBK? Did he not understand that so long as he was telling the truth and could prove he was, the lawsuit had no chance of success?

      Liquidating the Anti-Corruption Fund only makes it look as if…well, as if he was just making all that stuff up. I would have thought he would welcome such a golden opportunity to prove that Prigozhin is a crook and conspired with Putin to poison him, in front of the whole world.

      I wonder how long it will be before Novichok poisoning attempts are also made against Sobol and Volkhov, and they, too, have to flee to Europe and a life of comfort.


      1. You know as well as I do that it is the standard old tactic of dodgy traders the world over. When you get fingered by the law, liquidate the shop/company/investment house/bank/whatever and claim only debt on the books, therefore nothing to gain, set up elsewhere under a new legal vehicle.


  50., which is NOT “Pravda” of Soviet infamy, the Bolshevik Party organ and believed by many Western know-nothings to be de rigeur reading for all Russian citizens:

    Russian Foreign Ministry: Berlin “cleaned up” the OPCW report on Navalny
    10/21/2020 08:44

    The report from the OPCW that has finally been made available to Russian experts has puzzled them. The fact is that part of the material that is about the substance that caused the politician’s poisoning has been “cleaned up”.

    As it has turned out, the data has been “classified” at the request of the German authorities. Thus, key points on the composition, characteristics and other data of the “poisonous substance” remain secret for the Russian side.

    “The absence of this information indicates that allegations of the allegedly deliberate poisoning of the blogger remain unsupported by any evidence base of inferences”, said representatives of the Russian Foreign Ministry.

    Moreover, Germany is still not eager to work with Russia jointly: even the data on two analyses that were taken from Navalny at the Charité remain unavailable to domestic experts.

    Something is rotten in the state of Deutschland, methinks — and in Denmark, Sweden, Poland, the Baltics, the Netherlands, the UK etc., etc. as well.


  51. The touchy-feely Old Goat sill hard at it for his Liberast chums’ delectation:

    21:34, 21 октября 2020
    Венедиктов заявил об отсутствии сомнений в том, что Навальный был отравлен боевым веществом при поддержке государства

    21:34, 21 October 2020
    Venediktov has stated that there is no doubt that, with the support of the state, Navalny was poisoned with a military substance

    No doubt whatsoever! The evidence is clear and compelling.

    Echo Moskvy editor-in-chief Aleksei Venediktov has expressed his confidence that opposition politician Aleksei Navalny was poisoned with a military substance “with the support of the state or state structures”.

    “Right up to this very minute, I have no doubt that Aleksei Navalny was poisoned by “Novichok” or a substance similar to “Novichok”, or a substance from the “Novichok” group. But the fact that he was poisoned with a chemical warfare agent is obvious to me”, A. Venediktov said live on air from the Ekho Moskvy radio station.

    He stressed that the available evidence does not allow an opposite [interpretation of the events]. “Perhaps later some additional information will arise that will shake my opinion, but today I do not see how it can arise. There is direct evidence — 5 laboratories have found traces in Navalny’s analyses, which traces were caused by a substance similar to “Novichok”. The second [piece of direct evidence concerns his clothing]: where are his clothes in which he was brought to the hospital? Why haven’t they been handed over? What are they hiding? And where is the video footage of the hotel corridors, which were seized? These are three points”, Venediktov explained.

    He noted that “on the one hand, there is laboratory data, and on the other, the incomprehensible actions of the Russian authorities. All this leads me to believe that, most likely, Navalny was poisoned with a chemical warfare agent, at least with the support of the state or government agencies”, concluded A. Venediktov.

    What a thunderously logical train of thought Venediktov has presented!

    Why isn’t the old bastard told to fuck off out of Russia for good?

    Ekho Moskvy is majority owned by Gazprom Media, the largest media holding in Russia, and is a subsidiary of Gazprom, which is state owned.

    So the dirty old bastard above is employed by the state and, no doubt, earns a tidy sum spewing out shite from “his” radio station.

    Why is he allowed to do so?

    Everyone knows that criticism of the state is severely punished in Russia — by means of “Novichok”, it seems.

    So when is that piece of ordure who cant afford a haircut going to take a swig from a suitably dosed bottle of “Holy Spring” mineral water?


    1. Oh, come on – look at him. If somebody was going to have to spew an anti-state message every day and you were pro-state…wouldn’t you want it to be him? Christ, I’d hire him myself to agitate against me. He has the same audience Navalny has, and I doubt he is making any ordinary working-class Russians scratch their heads and muse, “You know…maybe Putin did poison Navalny. I mean, there’s a lot of evidence…”


    2. Эхо Москвы-“гнилое болото прозападных троллей”

      Echo of Moscow – “a putrid swamp of pro-Western trolls”

      November 14th. 2017

      Condoleezza Rice’s birthday (here – at the US Embassy after the interview)

      [The darling of the chattering classes, by the way, that shining star of the “Intelligentsia” Venediktov, has problems with his mother tongue, it seems. He wrote in his arse-licking Tweet above: День рождение Кондолизы Райс (здесь – в посольстве США после интервью). That should be: День рождениЯКондолизы Райс.]

      So, meet the CHIEF PEST, the editor of the radio station “Ekho of Moskvy” Aleksei Alekseevich Venediktov. “Echo of Moscow”, or as many call it: “Echo of Washington”, is an opposition radio station.

      I tell you — Russia is shitsville!

      This hotbed of traitors is financed by Western non-profit organizations, despite the fact that its controlling stake is owned by the holding company “Gazprom-Media”, and this is the number-two state company!!! How did it happen that for many years, these agitators of lies and of fear have been broadcasting throughout our homeland that everything is bad with us, and that our government consists of thieves and bandits?

      You know, there is a smart trick that they do in children’s swimming pools. Children who are afraid of water for many sessions are told, “You can swim because you have swum before”. They are told this day to day, and a few months later, lo and behold: the child begins to swim on his own! This miracle is called “the power of suggestion”.

      So they “echo” us every day from year to year, how everything is bad with us, and how everything is good with them. The ultimate goal of this radio station is that we all “SWIM” towards the West and the USA, and unfortunately with many of us this has already happened. The head of the radio station has repeatedly stated that the Ekho Moskvy project is quite profitable and independent, but this is a lie. If you look at the financial statements presented by the radio, money received by this news medium, most of it comes from advertising and is barely enough to pay the staff, or, rather, the traitors who are vilifying our country. In 2016, wrote that Echo employee Matvey Honopolsky, an ardent Russophobe who broadcasts in Russia, while in the Ukraine, received (and is now receiving) royalties from the American Broadcasting Board of Governors (BBG), a total of 19 money transfers worth $12,800. And this is the official information from the BBG reports.

      So why does our government allow such organizations to operate and promote evil in our country? All that the state needed to have done within the legal framework was to acquire a controlling stake and install its own director. However, according to Echo’s charter, the owners do not have the right to interfere with the editorial policy of the radio station, which is determined by the Editor-in-Chief through direct voting. That is to say, even the owner cannot change the editor-in-chief.

      Identical puppets with the same puppeteers, and even with the same names.

      When transmitting, the radio station occasionally refers to significant successes of the Russian Federation in various fields, but, in general, the station remains silent about them. However, almost every day, they do not forget to throw shit at the whole country and everything connected with it, making mountains out of molehills. Every year, with intervals of 3-4 days, we are told that there will be a terrible crisis, a collapse of the ruble, a fall in all shares and industries, that people are becoming impoverished, there is no place to work. This has been going on for 15 years, but nothing critical has happened. Yes, there are problems: there always have been and always will be, but they are being solved and everything goes on as usual. Russia is still bending Turkey, the West and America into positions that are not even in the Kama Sutra. We are not afraid of anything. They are afraid. And all they can do is create trolls by means of their greenbacks, who, foaming at their mouths, will shout “Help!!! Lifeguards!!! We are all going to drown!!!”, but it is they who are drowning and their puppet-masters through their lies and helplessness. And we easily and confidently ply forth aboard the icebreaker RUSSIA, smashing all the barriers and obstacles that lie ahead.

      This master [of disinformation and manipulation] has so messed up many Russian citizens’ heads, that they have really all begun to think that the bad times have come, but believe me, this is a myth: times were much, much worse than they are now. Don’t we have anything to eat? Do we really have total unemployment? Lies and provocation of “ECHO” trolls! When I come to you with such thoughts, I advise you to watch a cult and instructive film “The Cool Summer of ’53”. I assure you, it will be easier for you and you will understand that we are doing great now, and stop comparing RUSSIA with the West and the USA, saying: “But look at how they live!” As has been classically said: “We have our own special way”, that is to say, we have our own path of development; we are different, not like them; we are patient and merciful, even when we covered from head to toe with the shit that they have thrown at us and our chief allies have betrayed us for 10 pieces of silver. But as they say in Russia: “We take a long time to harness up, but when we have done, we move fast. And God forbid, dear “partners”, that you come to know all the fury and anger of Russia in a rage.

      And despite the fact that there are a lot of these “fabulous creatures” all over numerous social networks and video hosting and who speak out in the media and on international platforms, most of us do not believe in pro-Western trolls and are confident about the future. Many of us remember: “It was better in the past !!!”, and in fact, in fact, just some 90 years ago, the relevant authorities solved such issues very quickly, and most importantly, effectively.

      On January 18, 2012, Russian President V.V. Putin arranged a public scolding of the editor-in-chief of the radio station Echo of Moscow for “serving the interests of the United States”.The President then said: “You are not even a traitor, you are an enemy!” Friends, let us live in the present, make noble plans for the future. We will not live in the past; we will not follow the lead of enemies of provocateurs and trolls. We are stronger, both in spirit and in arms”.


        1. Putin said it, in a nutshell, and a prudent person would have taken it as a warning – what they are providing is not information; it is serving the foreign-policy interests of one state in relation to another. You could look at that typed out on a legal indictment, and it would spell T.R.E.A.S.O.N., insofar as those who do it live in the state whose interests they are working against.

          I have a secret apprehension that Venediktov fancies himself surpassingly clever, and at the same time believes the Americans can be trusted. I wouldn’t say he is so naive that he has visited America and seen only high standards of living everywhere he looked, and wants the same for his fellow Russians – no, but he fancies that once a deal was signed with America, Venediktov and his fellow intellectuals could compel them to keep it, because America is a country of laws. Any time things started to slip from the wonderful dream partnership the intelligentsia visualize, Venediktov would be able to wag his finger at them scoldingly, and say “Uh-uh; no, no – we had a deal”.

          Doubtless there are those Americans who think so, too, and would sign a deal meaning to hold to it. But their hands are tied; no matter their intentions, it would not be long before some American interests found fault with the deal – it restricted America operationally, prevented it from exercising the full benefit of its freedoms. And gosh darn it – that’s unconstitutional. But Russia would be expected to adhere religiously to its own part of the deal.

          So it’s possible Venediktov sees himself as a man of integrity, who wants to do good and fancies he can outsmart the American tricksters; it’s not an uncommon mania among egotists. Navalny is not cut from the same cloth; he is simply a grifter who will express his loyalty to anyone who pays him and permits him to enjoy a luxurious lifestyle without his having to work too hard for it.


      1. I maintain that the serving sirens of western superiority – Venediktov, Khodorkovsky, Kasparov, Navalny, Sobol, Vasiliyeva – are ideally suited for the job. Except for Sobol and Vasiliyeva, who are quite attractive, they all look the part, and there is nobody charismatic in the bunch, while Venediktov looks like a skeevy old pedo or something, and dresses like a rodeo clown on peyote. Their love for America and its ‘values’ is based on a belief – probably sincere, in some cases – that life in the west is ‘the good life’, and that all you need is a change of venue and you are on Easy Street forever. Government? No problem – thanks to the power of the honest democratic vote, if you don’t like what the government is doing, you simply wave your hand and vote it out of the picture. Not everyone is rich; no, no, let’s be real. But the standard of living is much, much higher, and a rising tide lifts all boats. They don’t see that in America, for example, the days we are living through right now are wiping out small to medium business right and left

        while in the four months from March to June Jeff Bezos increased his wealth by $48 Billion.

        Why not? Because they all see themselves as Jeff Bezos, kicking ass and getting ever richer, if only God would grant them the opportunity, and not that restaurant owner who is living on handouts and watching his business die. Not that the pandemic ruined the west – hardly; income inequality was always a major feature. We just don’t call our predatory rich ‘oligarchs’. We call them ‘entrepreneurs’ and ‘movers and shakers’, just the way the western media recategorized Petro Poroshenko literally overnight.

        It’s obviously possible to sway public opinion in Russia, and make the electorate believe the government is scheming to give it a rough deal so as to steal more for itself, builds nothing but is destroying everything, and that the electorate is powerless to do anything about it because it’s ‘voting’ is just a sham. But I ask you how much easier that would be if the ‘opposition’ were led by someone like Nikolai Starikov.

        Venediktov is a repulsive kook, and Navalny an obvious smirking grifter – the two inspire disgust and loathing in Russia, where it counts – nobody cares, or should not, how popular they are in America, where their singing for their supper inspires adoration and praise – remember how many radical organizations around the world evoke the same or similar praise for their ‘fiery independence’ in the western press, who would be shot dead in the streets if they were loose in Los Angeles. The west is happy to sing their praises so long as they are useful to western ends, and far away.

        A little Navalny goes a long way, and it will not be long before his claimed eagerness to return to Russia is viewed with interest rather than claimed fear for the safety of this brave warrior for freedom.


  52. I’ve noticed a new trend in the ‘Russia in Trouble’ media crowd. They’re licking their lips loudly and saying that it is now Germany that is changing the relationship with Russia ‘more to one of containment,’ one article claims it was the assassination by bicycle killer of a Chechen terrorist in Berlin that was the straw that broke the camel’s back.

    Of course there is no comment or linking of thought about the decapitation of M. Paty recently in France by a young Chechen. I wonder if they claimed political asylum from that ‘awful Kadyrov regime’? Even €µ called Pootie-Poot about it for some reason. The killer and family are French citizens and are treated equally and fully respect the laws ‘civilization’ of France!

    The point being that all sorts of scum have been given asylum in the west because they could be useful in future and for buffing up PR ‘Human Rights’ credentials. The Manchester bomber was from a family of islamist oppositionist to Ghadaffi…

    Or are we not supposed to point out any of the above? Nope. We’re suppose to cheer ‘Germany/whomever pulling the plug on Russia’ meme that is causing damp trousers in western media. Again.


    1. Not to mention, of course, the thoroughly charming Tsarnaev brothers, AKA the Boston Marathon bombers.

      Oh, dear; the Russian government warned the US government a year and a half before the bombing that Tamerlan Tsarnaev was a “violent radical Islamist”, but shucky-darn if someone did not misspell his last name in a security database, and the opportunity to question him was lost.

      Although, looking at this story, maybe that’s not so hard to believe – what does it mean if someone is ‘forthgoing’? Is that even a word? And how did an error like someone’s athletic ability being described as ‘steller’ make it past the editor at CBS? Is it enough now that people who can spell know what you mean?

      Until, of course, the misspelling is in a database which is searched by a computer, which is a less-forgiving editor.


    1. Reminds me of an anti-war cartoon from the Vietnam war era. The general is pointing to a map of the region with arrows pointing from South Vietnam into Cambodia. He explains that the US is withdrawing from Vietnam into Cambodia and then they will withdraw from Cambodia into Laos.


  53. Vis Insultin’ Erd O’Grand, many soothsayers are marvelling at the lack of response to his actions (particularly in the west) and also by Russia, leveraging Turkey’s ‘strategic importance.’ All I say in the latter case is that Russia plays the long game. Erd O’Grand is burning the candle at both ends. Or, doling out the rope himself. Or strategic over-extension. But even then his support of Az is selling weapons and using Syrian mercernaries which is hardly much direct risk to himself or recent articles extolling his ‘gas pipeline leveraging’ in Turkey’s favor/ But, there are always consequences one way or another. Sooner or later. They may be manageable, or rapid but I can’t hazard a guess.

    He still is very useful for Russia as a spoiler and a wedge amongst NATO/western nations despite his regular use of dick moves and two-bit gangster strategies. I think Russia has the situation in hand.


  54. Al-Beeb s’Allah: Nagorno-Karabakh: Nearly 5,000 dead in conflict, Putin says

    …Mr Putin said he disagreed with Turkey over the conflict, adding that Turkish President Tayyip Erdogan “might seem tough, but is a flexible politician and reliable partner for Russia”…

    Trans. “We’ve got his measure and we can handle him very comfortably thank you!”

    Oh, bollocks! My earlier comment has gone in to moderation. I should stop drinking. This post was evidence to support it. Can you rescue it please Mark?! Thanks!


  55. Deutsche Scheisse

    Putin says he allowed Alexei Navalny to be treated in Germany

    Russian President Vladimir Putin said he personally intervened to have rival Alexei Navalny flown out of Russia for medical treatment. Navalny claims Putin was behind his poisoning with the Novichok nerve agent.



    1. The Evil One must love teasing Western nations by having them examine and test his victims for poisoning with Novichok and seeing how they pass the tests with flying colours. He’d be most disappointed if his victims actually died of Novichok before the West can test them and exclaim: Aaack! Poisoned with Novichok! Putin did it!

      What a sly and cunning bugger is Putin, whose motives are too complex for ordinary mortals to fathom!


  56. Ha, ha, ha!! Oh, my ribs!!

    You can take the boy out of economics, but you can’t take the economics out of the boy; Krugman’s confessions as to having gotten globalization wrong are contained in – you guessed it – his new book. So if you want to lick your lips over his mea culpas, you have to put even more money in his pocket. Brilliant, no?

    Globalization was a hell of an idea while it was visualized as a stepping-stone to American dominance of world trade, and not Chinese. And don’t kid yourself that Krugman gives a flying fuck for how globalization has ‘hurt American workers’. Pure trade economics is merely war without guns and powder, and a dominant king of trade always emerges by virtue of its resources, economic skill and agility of understanding just how much advantage to permit each of its subordinates so that they are successful enough for self-satisfaction, but never a personal challenge. America’s increasingly frantic attempts to kneecap and bring down the Chinese juggernaut are a reflection of its growing understanding that it completely misread the rules, even as it made them up itself.


  57. Al-Jizz Error: France: Teacher’s killer in ‘contact’ with fighter in Syria

    Source close to the case says 18-year-old man who beheaded Samuel Paty was in close communication with a combatant in Syria.

    …Traced to Idlib

    Le Parisien newspaper reported on Thursday that Anzorov’s suspected contact had been located through an IP address traced back to Idlib, a rebel holdout in northwestern Syria.

    Idlib is controlled by the Hay’et Tahrir al-Sham (HTS) group, formerly al-Qaeda’s Syrian branch, but has also become the refuge for several splinter groups…

    Ah, that explains €µ’s call to Pootie-Poot. Except that it doesn’t.

    HTS members used to be ‘Syrian Rebels (TM)’ earlier on …it was formed on 28 January 2017 as a merger between Jabhat Fateh al-Sham (formerly al-Nusra Front), the Ansar al-Din Front, Jaysh al-Sunna, Liwa al-Haqq, and the Nour al-Din al-Zenki Movement…* which were very popular until the West, financed and supported with arms (via Gulfie allies) and eventually labelled them as terrorists. These Chechens were popular because they could be used in Russia’s ‘soft underbelly.’



    1. “The killing has prompted an outpouring of emotion in France, with tens of thousands taking part in rallies countrywide in defence of free speech and the right to mock religion.

      “We will not give up cartoons,” Macron vowed at Wednesday’s ceremony at the Sorbonne University in Paris.

      An opinion poll by the Ifop institute on Thursday found nearly 80 percent of those questioned said it was appropriate for teachers to use cartoons making fun of religion in the classroom.”

      Surely God wanted us to make fun of other people’s religions – the more devout, the funnier it is. It’s part of our Freedoms. That’s why we give Israel Billions in foreign aid every year – so we can make fun of God.

      Making fun of religion is just part of what makes school such a rich learning environment. It’s healthy for us to laugh at…well, other people; we can’t really pretend to be laughing at ourselves, because the west is overwhelmingly Christian.

      Just don’t make fun of the gays or the transgenders or the bisexuals. Because that’s not funny – not even in Elementary school. That’s where you go to learn how important it is to not discriminate against gays and how to use contraceptives properly so you can begin having sex earlier. Opinions that this is not appropriate for the classroom are not welcome, and will be met with suspensions for those who are employees in the education system. Still okay to make fun of religion, though.

      You know, if there really is some kind of deity out there monitoring us and keeping an eye on our behaviours, and He decided based on His observations to destroy the entire world in a coruscating fireball , I could not find it in me to blame Him or to protest that it was unjust.

      You probably thought France could not make itself look any more foolish or crazy. If you did, you’d be wrong. Via Martyanov;

      “Paris, 20 October–RIA Novosti. The head of France’s Ministry of the Internal Affairs Gerald Darmanin declared, that he wants to visit Russia at the end of this week and hold negotiations with Russia’s colleague. “Today I applied, on behalf of President (of France) to visit Russia this weekend to negotiate with my colleague… I applied and hope that I will get this opportunity to go to Russia this weekend or Monday”–Dermanin declared live at BFMTV channel broadcast. He noted, that his intention is to discuss the issue of the possible return (to Russia) of the radicalized persons with origins in Russia.”


      1. Agreed, the double standard reeks to high heaven as it were. Those who loudly proclaim their tolerance are usually the most intolerant of all.

        Whether it’s a deity, karma or a natural re-balancing emergent from deep physical laws not yet fully understood, this aberration of human development will surely end.

        There are types of brain scans that can identify neural structures responsible for selfless sacrifice and for narcissism/psychopathy. Here is one article on the later:

        Should people diagnosed with such a brain structure be regarded as handicapped or whatever the PC term is nowadays for their own safety and the safety of others? I don’t know.

        As noted by researchers, Western society has an usually high percentage of narcissists. Offered explanations include that narcissists do better in Western society and societal values encourage/reward expression of narcissistic behavior. Since narcissistic behavior is apparently a spectrum disorder, society would tend to amplify such behavior in mildly narcissistic people.

        It makes the most sense that the struggle between East and West is based on the psychology of the leadership which, in turn, can only exist with the permission of the general population. It’s not ideology nor religion. Good versus evil, we versus I, serving in heaven versus ruling in hell, whatever.

        The whole house of cards will crash soon enough. The challenge will be to survive. FWIW, Demitry Orlov of Club Orlov has returned to Russia with his family to escape what he regards as the pending collapse of the West. I have a business with a lot of people counting on employment. I guess we will ride it out.


      2. Around this time of year, the press in the UK normally finds easy targets in stories about train cancellations due to the “wrong kind” of leaves/snow etc on the tracks. The French must’ve picked up on that line of excuses to be able to even attempt to repatriate the “wrong kind of Islamic fundamentalist”. Or maybe it’s a homage to “Withnail and I” and the classic scene “we’ve come on holiday by mistake”?

        That tiny, invisible violin…I have something in my eye.


      3. I wonder if the European Court of Justice will now have a problem with France over ‘rule of law’ like it has with Poland? Russia could say tongue in cheek that France should respect the ECHR and European legal norms. After all, they’re France’s terrorist scum, so France can keep them.


      1. Sabine Hossenfelder, my current favorite scientist, had an interesting video on people who believe that our planet is flat. She correctly states that they are not stupid, just wrong.

        Their basic contention is that we should only trust the senses and our senses tell us that the world is flat. Frankly, adding in a little thinking, our senses would tell us that the world is curved and likely a sphere.

        There is much appeal and likely truth in trusting our senses and our thinking over what we are told how things work or what to think. This is especially so in the fields of economics and politics. I have just made the most obvious statement possible. Pretty good work this early in the day.


        1. That’s an intelligent way of explaining it.

          If we focus on one or two senses to the exclusion of others, then stuff starts to look weird and makes no sense. But even when we do not, the ‘sensor fusion’ that our brain does and now machines are starting to do reasonably can still be confused, hence things like daylight hallucinations and other optical or physical wobbles we have all experienced at some point.


        2. I think few flat earthers have ever been on the high seas. Ancient mariners who ventured away from the shoreline and headed out to the open sea must have realized that the earth’s surface was at the very least curved, for how else could thay have explained the gradual appearance of a ship from over the horizon, the first sighting of which would have been the very top of its mainmast, followed by the sighting of its other masts and flags and pennants, and then its rigging and then, finally, its hull that was visible above the waterline?


          1. Agreed.

            The terminology used in the O’Brian series about Aubrey and Maturin regarding sight of other vessels at sea can only make sense in a curved world. The lookout first announces “Sails at …” for the merest glimpse of another ship spotted from an observation position high on a mast and progresses to report the vessel as much closer “hull up”.


          2. The ancient Greeks figured out a lot of things from direct observation and basic geometry. IIRC, a Greek scientist determined the approximate diameter of the earth, the moon and the sun as well as their distances by observing lunar and solar eclipses and the angle of the sun at high noon at various latitudes. Here is how one Greek scientist made a surprisingly accurate measurement of the earth’s circumference.


            One complicating factor in using the appearance of a mast of a sailing ship to estimate the curvature of earth is atmospheric distortion. Looking out from the western shore of Lake Erie, there is an island about 20 miles to the east. Most times it is not visible, sometimes it is a bump on the horizon and occasionally the entire island is visible down to its beaches. I don’t know if it’s cool air over warm water or vice versa but there is some atmospheric effect in play.

            Liked by 1 person

            1. What a fascinating topic Patient Observer.

              Eratosthenes (276 BC. 194 BC) may have been wrong about a lot of shit – he still thought, for example, that the sun revolved around the [spherical] earth – geocentrism. But he made a pretty good first of calculating the circumference of the earth: Of course greats such as Pythagoras and Aristotle provided a solid foundation for his work though.

              Here is a short video illustrating his method:

              Then along comes Copernicus (1473-1543) with his heliocentric model.

              BUT WAIT – was he really the first?

              A guy named Nasir al-Din al-Tusi (1201 to 1274) was fleeing for his life across continents east to west ahead of the marauding Mongols and while he hadn’t formulated the heliocentric model he provided much of the groundwork in terms of the observations and mathematical modelling, otherwise accredited to Copernicus.

              I have read that al-Tusi may have been one of the characters depicted in Rafael’s masterpiece “School of Athens”.

              Here is a neat essay on al-Tusi’s contribution:

              *”Copernicus and Ibn Al-Shatir: does the Copernican revolution have Islamic roots?”* By Nidhal Guessoum


              Nidhal essentially argues a tenuous, incidental link and certainly no plagiarism by Copernicus. Perhaps some accumulated knowledge after a couple of centuries, the origin of which was not certain?


            2. How about the performance of radio waves? On a flat earth, VHF would wave a mocking goodbye to line-of-sight, and radio transmissions would be limited only by the power of the transmitter.


        3. One problem in trusting our senses and our thinking is that ultimately our intuition and thoughts depend very much on our experience of the world and the mental / psychological paradigms we are taught by our elders. Our senses and thinking cannot tell us that the world is curved and is spherical if our prior experience and the cultural background we have are not informed by knowledge of the planets and stars, how they move in the sky relative to the position of the observer on Earth, and being able to use that knowledge to direct human affairs, as in knowing when and where to travel by land and sea to find food and shelter, for hunter-gatherers who migrate within their territories annually, or for seafarers back in the days when they had to sail by the stars and use bird migrations to determine where land was over the horizon.

          To my knowledge the heliocentric (Sun-centred) view of the solar system was never universally accepted among the ancients across the Middle East and India. It would be worth knowing whether the Mayans, Aztecs and Incas had a heliocentric view or not of the solar system because these cultures developed their own astronomies and closely followed the paths of various planets, and (in the case of the Maya) developed very a sophisticated mathematics to make predictions about the timing of celestial phenomena. Would having a heliocentric or geocentric (Earth-centred) view make a difference to these cultures’ astronomies?

          Liked by 1 person

        4. I think I mentioned before that I have a colleague at work who is a flat-earther. Well, that’s not entirely fair – he doesn’t necessarily believe the earth is flat; he regards the claims of modern science with such skepticism that their statements regarding the roundness of the planet and their contemptuous dismissal of those who suggest it might not be round are sufficient that the claim must be regarded with suspicion.

          When I say, “But XX, when you are flying in an airliner at 30k-40k feet, you can actually see the curvature of the earth!” And his rebuttal to that is that the windows on an airliner are actually fish-eye lenses which distort the horizon, and make it look curved. I’m afraid that just sounds too much like invention for the purpose of preserving belief. But he is otherwise a great shipmate, with a wicked sense of humor, so I just try to sidestep those moments.


  58. To those who speculated here and there on the emergence, from the manufactured COVID crisis, of a World Government…ta DAH!!!!

    Yes, you know that when the IMF addresses you as ‘brothers and sisters’, it is time to get out the lube, because some big-time rogering is in the works.

    No more bilateral agreements. We must tackle the global economic problems as a united world. You know, now that I think about it, let me just put this out there – every united crisis group needs a leader…


    1. Have you seen this supposed leaked email from a so-called whistle-blower claiming to be a member of a Strategic Policy Committee within the Liberal Party of Canada?

      I caution that anything with the name of Henry Makow attached to it should be treated with suspicion. He sees the hand of the Rothschilds and the Illuminati in everything he doesn’t like and behind every bad thing that has happened in the world including the Nazi genocides against Jews and Slavs during WW2.


      1. I had not, but it sounds very flaky to me. There is very little support here for a UBI program, and the surveyed numbers of those who would reject a COVID vaccine if one were available is significant.


        1. The timeline of the supposed planned events is very suspicious as well: it is too short. The organisation involved in such an undertaking in a 12-month period would be immense and require huge amounts of investment in labour, money and other resources that would have to be taken away from other areas of government funding. That cannot be done without Parliament, individual MPs, relevant govt departments like the Finance Ministry or provincial govts noticing and making a fuss.

          Also the idea of building isolation facilities in remote parts of Canada to house huge numbers of dissidents, without people already living and working in those areas noticing something odd going on, is strange. Remote areas in Canada are not like remote areas in Australia where incarceration facilities for boatpeople fleeing persecution or war have long been used: remote parts of Australia tend to be desert where the issue of dealing with permafrost and the problems caused to building foundations and transport infrastructure is non-existent. Plus Canada is so far away from countries like Sri Lanka, Myanmar and Vietnam that it has never really had to worry about handling huge numbers of refugees trying to enter Canadian maritime territory in rickety fishing boats and having to build facilities to house them. So the infrastructure to house huge numbers of dissidents would have to be built from scratch. It would be easier for Ottawa to arrange with Canberra to ship out all Canadian dissidents to Australia where they can then be parcelled out to Nauru, Christmas Island, Manus Island in Papua New Guinea and places in remote Western Australia.


          1. What is far more likely at play is electioneering and over-the-top promising. We have just seen a mini-example here in British Columbia, where Premier John Horgan won a majority for his New Democrats after calling a snap election which infuriated his opponents. The pie-in-the-sky promises flew thick and fast, including Greens leader Sonia Fursteneau’s promise to return BC Ferries to a Crown Corporation. I use that as a stellar (not ‘steller’) example of a nutty promise because she doubtless polled her likely voters and settled on a promise to ‘improve service’, while ignoring everything else about the company, and because conservative Times-Colonist columnist Les Leyne blew a hole in the idea big enough to drive an Aircraft Carrier through.


            An idea masquerading as ‘getting you the service you deserve’ – presumably customers are not getting what they ‘deserve’ unless they get emperor-level fawning for pennies in costs – is actually a recipe for transferring semi-private debt to a fully public responsibility. And so it goes, on every level from municipal to national – those running for office hold a finger to the wind or put an ear to the ground, pick your metaphor, to see what the electorate wishes for and strive to interpret those wishes into the possible even where it is patently not. The only remarkable thing is that people still cast their ballots based on who promised them the thing they wanted most and persuaded them they could have it for next to nothing.


  59. Deutsche Welle still hard at it disseminating “factual” misinformation about Russian malfeasance:

    Bellingcat: Russia continued Novichok program despite claiming to end it [sic]

    Novichok has been used to poison Alexei Navalny, double agent Sergei Skripal and his daughter Yulia. A report by The Insider, Bellingcat, Der Spiegel and Radio Liberty disputes Moscow’s claims about ending the program.

    As regards the having vanished off the face of the earth Skripals, no definite proof of said poisoning has been presented, their attempted poisoning by Putin’s incompetent killer thugs having been “highly likely”, according to H.M. Government, and the agent most definitely used for the failed assassination attempt on the Skripals having been “Novichok”, according to some “guy” at Porton Down, as claimed by Boris de Pfeffer Johnson during an interview with shagger Nemtsov’s daughter on DW.


    Enough said.

    A Deutsche Welle primary source?

    And “Radio Liberty” and the impeccably unbiased “Der Spiegel”!!!

    And “The Insider”” FFS????

    Herr Doktor Goebbels would have been justifiably proud of the lads and lasses at DW!

    The Deutsche Welle translator’s English is not so shit hot as the Fritzes might well believe it is. The above DW headline should read: despite claiming to have ended it.

    And the German Washington lackeys, being the colonial subjects of the Empire that they are, choose to spell “programme” in the simplified way that their overlords do.



    1. Oh! It’s suddenly become all right!

      Chief Stooge must be up late.

      I’m using my iPhone, which is a pain in the arse because of my big fingers.


      1. Size doesn’t matter.

        Chief Stooge will not be around tomorrow, or most of the next day – I shall be engaged in moving the ferry BOWEN QUEEN from Vesuvius Bay, Saltspring Island, to Quadra Island near Campbell River, a journey of some 221 km by road. It’ll be in two stages, overnight at Buckley Bay the first night, then on to Quadra Island and drive home from Campbell River. I trust the world will hold together while I am gone, and Navalny will not become President of Russia or something.


  60. TASS
    24 окт, 13:07
    Захарова заявила, что в НАТО стали забывать, кто принес свободу Европе

    Oct 24, 13:07
    Zakharova has said that NATO had begun to forget who brought freedom to Europe
    This is how the official representative of the Ministry of Foreign Affairs of the Russian Federation commented on the statements of the German Lieutenant General Jörg Vollmer about the attitude of the North Atlantic Alliance to Moscow.

    MOSCOW, October 24. /TASS/. Statements by the head of the operational command “North” of NATO forces in Europe, German Lieutenant General Jörg Vollmer about the attitude of the North Atlantic Alliance to Moscow indicate that the bloc has forgotten who brought freedom to the peoples of Europe during the Second world war. This was written on Saturday by the official representative of the Russian foreign Ministry Maria Zakharova on her Facebook page.

    In an interview with Dagens Nyheter published on October 21, Vollmer said that the Russian Federation is trying to divide NATO and Sweden, and also expressed the opinion that, given the common history of the Alliance countries, they do not consider Russia an enemy, but consider it an opponent.

    “Given our common history, such German generals need to know it better: our country was an opponent of fascism and Nazism. “The Alps and the Danube remember” who “brought freedom to the peoples of Europe”, but then NATO members began spinning their tales”, Zakharova stressed.

    63-year-old Vollmer, photographed in 2015 — a proud holder of a Master’s Degree at the School of Advanced Military Studies in Fort Leavenworth, Kansas, USA.

    Old soldiers never die, they just become stupid old farts.


  61. One thing that I learned from the last presidential debate was that the Biden family is truly a criminal enterprise. He is far more (or less) than a daffy old man. The guy and his family are bad, very bad:

    Via Club Orlov:

    I wonder if all high level US politicians have multi-million dollar side hustles involving selling influence, andinside information, hanging out at Epstein’s island (or equivalent) and doing political hits on anyone who questions the sanctity of the Establishment.

    The utter incompetence of US leadership including the MSM may be a function of the fact that they are all addicted to their money and their personal schemes. Nothing is more important to them than protecting their egomania.


    1. I have not yet read the report itself, only the summary, but if the report is as well-substantiated as the author suggests, it will be hard for the Bidens to get out from under it. The mainstream media is mostly in the Democrats’ pocket, but enough media outlets are sympathetic to Republican objectives (none, in my opinion, are independent) that they could get it out there to where it could not be ignored to death.

      Modern American politicians are the Roman Senate of today – fantastically corrupt, addicted to forbidden pleasures and oozing arrogant entitlement. We’ve seen leaders from the political class, and they have been disasters. We’ve seen a leader from outside the political class, but firmly in the corporate class, and he is a disaster. Who’s left? The stableboy? The pool cleaner? Ron Jeremy? Alicia Keys (who is actually Alicia Cook; the ‘Keys’ refers to her piano chops)? America is tapped out for leaders, and its traditional talent pools are potholes of toxic sludge.


  62. StalkerZone is bragging that Ukraine is almost three times poorer than Russia:

    But is that much of an achievement? According to the same source Poland is almost twice as rich as Russia. And Estonia is about 2,5 times richer than Russia. Even China is richer than Russia now.

    Russia seems to be lagging behind, and being overtaken by China with 1,3 billion people is not great for Russia, as an average Chinese is now richer than an average Russian.


    1. The real issue is not Ukraine being three times poorer than Russia, but rather the poor performance of the former Soviet Union countries except for the Baltic countries. Communism killed these countries and its effect is still showing. All of them are far below $10,000 except for Russia who is just below that mark.

      Even energy-rich Uzbekistan stands at 1,100$ and Tajikistan at $800. Armenia and Azerbaijan are both roughly at $4,000.

      Why are these countries so much poorer than Estonia, Lithuania, Latvia and even Bulgaria and Romania?


      1. Good to hear from you Karl! Where to begin?

        Lets compare apples to apples. Germany has a population of 80 million and Russia about 142 million. Thus, the population ratio is about 56% between the two countries.

        Based on purchasing power parity (PPP) which partially accounts for foreign exchange rates AND that Germany and Russia have about the same size economy AND Germany per capita GDP is about $46,200 (projected for 2020) YIELDS a Russian wealth, per capita of about $25,800. Apples to apples. Don’t be lazy, check out my numbers.

        Remember, it’s P-P-P that matters to an individual’s wealth. Again, P-P-P. One more time: P-P-P.

        Agreed that Ukraine likely has a per capital wealth of about 1/3 that or Russia.

        Oh, almost forgot, DEBT! Russia is largely debt-free yet maintains a military that is power enough to defeat NATO according to most non-NATO observers of such matters. It’s quite a burden on an economy.

        One other tidbit, Baltic republics are in free-fall in terms of population. I wonder why.

        I was saddened but not surprised to see Croatia has a per capita wealth twice that of Serbia. Amazing what blockades, economic sanctions, political pressure, sabotage and….. massive bombing by NATO can do to a country.


        1. The Baltic countries having populations in freefall certainly helps to boost those countries’ per capita GDP. The fewer the number of people, the more GDP there is to share around, even though it is an abstract concept.


          1. And the Russian Federation — in effect the former RSFSR that had declared its independence from the USSR just as had all the other former Soviet republics — in its claim to be the inheritor state of the USSR, accepted total responsibility for all the debts of the USSR — and paid them off, i may add! — and in doing so, in an act of, dare I say, stupendous magnanimity, granted tabula rasa to the remaining former Soviet republics, including those that since then have continued to vomit bile against their erstwhile “Russian” oppressors, namely the three Baltic states and the “Independent Ukraine”, the economic situation of which four states in the course of the 20 years that have passed since their “liberation” from Soviet “tyranny” having plummeted ever further, not to mention their massive depopulation.


    2. Why do you believe that Stalker Zone is “bragging” and not simply stating a fact?

      Surely your use of the term “bragging” is a subjective criticism?

      Accepting that Russia is 3 times wealthier than the Ukraine, why do you criticize that as being a spurious “achievement” to be bragged about and not merely a fact?


      1. Karl was desperate to post something, anything. All that bad news about Russia – strengthening relationship with China, coming out of the pandemic in reasonably good shape, having the first and likely the most effective vaccine, etc. was too much to take.


          1. Such an alliance would indeed cause sleepless nights in Washington and Brussels because it would in all probability include a mutual-defense clause similar to NATO’s Article 5. An attack on either would be interpreted as an attack against both. In Washington’s fantasies, it conducts an overwhelming strike against one or the other, catching its ‘partner’ on the back foot and – if it were China – wiping out an important Russian energy customer even as its massive conventional army striking power was neutralized, where if it were Russia, denying China important energy reserves and wiping out its long-range attack warning, leaving it functionally blind.

            In reality, both are nuclear powers, although China’s capability is much weaker and less sophisticated, and the combined armies of the two would crush any NATO attempt to mount a land attack. In fact, I can’t think of anything more foolish than such an attempt right off the top of my head. So if you couldn’t attack it by conventional means and don’t have enough nukes to be sure of getting all theirs and escaping a fearsome counterstrike…where are you?


            1. Rule 1, on page I of the book of war, is: “Do not march on Moscow”. Various people have tried it, Napoleon and Hitler, and it is no good. That is the first rule. I do not know whether your Lordships will know Rule 2 of war. It is: “Do not go fighting with your land armies in China”. It is a vast country, with no clearly defined objectives, and an army fighting there would be engulfed by what is known as the Ming Bing, the people’s insurgents — Bernard Montgomery, 1st Viscount Montgomery of Alamein, addressing the House of Lords, 30 May 1962 (Hansard, Col. 227)

              I believe that “Ming Bing” is Montgomery’s version of “Ming Bing Ching”.

              Were Montgomery alive now and used such an expression in the House of Lords, he would be immediately attacked by the “Woke” for his racism, as I believe that the term, though I have never heard it before, is the equivalent of “Chink”.

              For what it is worth, I do not find the term “Chink” as being insultingly “racist”, though I am not Chinese, so I cannot really be a judge in this matter.

              For me, “Chink” is like “Russkie”, which I do not think is racist either, simply an imitation of what Russians say of themselves, namely “Я — русский” (Ya — russkiy: I am Russian), albeit the Chinese do not call themselves anything that sounds like “Chink” to anglophone ears.

              The Chinese call themselves “Han”. At least, that’s what a charming Chinese lady whom I taught many months ago told me. But she was almost Russian, because she comes from the northwestern Chinese province of “Black Dragon River” [Heilongjiang], which Black Dragon River” [Heilong Jiang] is called the “Amur” by the Russkies and forms part of the Russia / China frontier.


    3. Is Poland the target of western sanctions designed to destroy its economy?

      Is Ukraine the beneficiary of western efforts to improve its overall prosperity and grow its economy?


  63. Mission accomplished?

    “Берлинский пациент” Навальный стал политиком №3 в России

    “Berlin patient” Navalny has become the number 3 politician in Russia
    24th October 2020

    The unconditional and unchanging alpha, the number 1 politician, the public figure enjoying the greatest confidence of Russians, remains President Putin.

    But then some strange fundamental changes have taken place.

    Only 3 months have passed, and what progress!

    1. President Vladimir Putin.
    2. Head of the Mead Sergey Lavrov (+2, was in 4th place).
    3. Leader of the Liberal Democratic Party Vladimir Zhirinovsky (-1, was in 2nd place immediately after Putin).
    4. Opposition politician Alexei Navalny (+5, ranked 9th).
    5. Defense Minister Sergei Shoigu (-2, was in third place after Putin and Zhirinovsky).
    6. Premier Mikhail Mishustin (-1, was in 5th place).

    There are no more politicians and statesmen in the first 10. There are:
    7.TV presenter Malakhov (-1),
    8.the parodist Galkin (-1), Khabensky (-1),
    10. TV presenter Soloviev (+5).

    I think everyone has seen what radical changes have taken place.

    Lavrov has overtaken both Zhirinovsky and Shoigu.

    Shoigu has again lost to Zhirinovsky, but also to Lavrov and Navalny.

    Does this mean that Russians have become more peaceful, have ceased to rely solely on military force, that all the hopes now are for a firm, tough, even harsh, but still foreign policy of Lavrov’s diplomats, and not the military?

    Or is it that people now do not really rely on our Armed Forces?

    Or is it Shoigu who has lost his PR initiative, has himself faded into the background, lost in the crowd of public figures in Russia?

    Another important event, actually a revolution in public opinion, is the rise of Navalny.
    According to the results of a “Romir” poll, Navalny became the number 3 politician in Russia.

    I think everyone understands that Defence Minister Shoigu, Foreign Minister Lavrov, Prime Minister Mishustin are not politicians.

    [Nor is Navalny! — ME]

    They are statesmen, appointed managers, authorities, but not politicians.

    [Navalny is a US agent — ME]

    We have only three significant, notable politicians left:

    No. 1 Putin,

    No. 2 Zhirinovsky,

    No. 3 Navalny.

    [Notable politician???? Who? Navalny? — ME]?

    Politician # 3 is not Medvedev as the leader of United Russia, he is in 20th place (-2).

    And nor is the mayor of Moscow Sergei Sobyanin, he is in 22nd place (-2).

    And not Sergei Shnurov from the Party of Growth, he is in 24th place (-8).

    And not Gennady Zyuganov, he is in 26th place (-4).

    Moreover, not Sergey Furgal, who appeared for the first time at the 29th place.

    Pavel Grudinin fell to 46th place (-14),

    Nikolay Platoshkin to 49 (-14).

    And Navalny moved up to 4th place in the overall standings and 3rd in the political.

    Particularly visible is Navalny’s breakthrough, given the survey methodology.

    People were asked to name 7 people who enjoy their greatest confidence, in order, starting with the very-very.

    Navalny was 9 in the old poll, that is, not everyone remembered him and not always.

    Now Navalny is generally the 4th, which means that he is known to almost everyone, and enjoys the confidence of a majority.

    [My stress, and therein lies the Bullshitter’s victory — ME]

    If we take both politicians and managers, the government , and then Navalny pushed both Mishustin and Shoigu aside.

    Shoigu pushed aside, do you understand?

    They trust Navalny more!

    Of course, in connection with recent events — poisoning, evacuation to Germany, recovery — increased attention has been riveted on Navalny.

    However, now everyone knows of him.

    He will also move Zhirinovsky from his seat to politician # 2 and try to move on.

    Do you want such an alternative to Putin?

    Путин занял первое место в рейтинге доверия жителей России

    MOSCOW, October 24, 2020, 16: 50-REGNUM In a list of 100 people who enjoy the greatest trust amongst the residents of the Russian Federation, the first place was taken by the current head of state Vladimir Putin. This, as RBC reports, has been confirmed by data provided by the research holding “Romir”.

    Sociologists of the All-Russian Centre for Public Opinion Research (VTsIOM), based on the data of the survey conducted on October 12-18, estimate the level of trust to the Russian leader at 67.7%, and experts of the Public Opinion Foundation (POI), in their turn, note that Putin is trusted by 59% of respondents


    В рейтинге доверия россиян Жириновский уступил место Лаврову

    In the rating of trust expressed by Russians Zhirinovsky hast lost his position to Lavrov

    The independent research holding “Romir” has compiled a list of 100 people who enjoy the greatest trust among Russians.

    A fourth study of Russians’ trust in public figures has made it possible to track the dynamics of the rating of individual influencers and the general trend over the post-quarantine period. The respondents were 2,400 people with different socio-demographic characteristics, consumer and media preferences, and living in all regions of Russia.

    The trust ratings of the Research Holding “Romir” have been compiled since December 2019. The previous wave of research was conducted in June during the period of self-isolation.

    Answering the open question: “Which of the public figures in Russia do you trust?”, Russians were asked to independently choose up to 7 persons who seemed to be the most frequently mentioned.

    The leader of the trust rating is still Russian President Vladimir Putin. Foreign Minister Sergei Lavrov moved up to second place. The third place is closed by the leader of the Liberal Democratic Party of Russia Vladimir Zhirinovsky, who took second place in June.

    The most active dynamics of the rating compared to June was noted for the following persons: Laysan Utyasheva (from 77th to 45th place), Garik Martirosyan (from 88th to 63rd place) and Vasily Vakulenko, known as Basta (from 95th to 66th place).

    The trust rating has also grown among other representatives of the arts and show business: Dima Bilan (16 lines up), Ivan Okhlobystin (16 lines up), Polina Gagarina (12 lines up) and Fyodor Bondarchuk (10 lines up). Blogger Ilya Varlamov also strengthened his position, moving from 69 to 58 place.

    Among politicians, the greatest growth in confidence was shown by the Chairman of the State Duma Vyacheslav Volodin (10 lines up).

    Some of the rating participants were unable to maintain the confidence of Russians at the same level. Alla Perfilova, known as Valeria (36 lines down) and Oleg Gazmanov (26 lines down).

    Among politicians, a decrease in confidence in Alexei Kudrin and Valentina Matvienko was noted. They dropped 25th and 24th in the ranking, respectively.

    Trust rating “Romir”, General Top-100, Geography: Russia, cities 100 thousand +

    Open infographic

    This study, according to experts from “Romir”, shows the peculiarities of the perception of information during the quarantine period. That is, the increased influence of the media on Russians, and, as a consequence, a stronger psychological dependence on the incessant flow of news. Some new persons included in the current rating, a year ago, would have gone unnoticed by the overwhelming majority of TV viewers, radio listeners or readers. However, in a situation of restrictions, the focus of attention of Russians has somewhat shifted from well-recognized public, political figures and representatives of show business to new ones. Including representatives of other states.

    [My stress — ME]

    Changes in the rating prove the effectiveness of the traditional popularization mechanism, which is based on the number and frequency of mentions. Regardless of whether the person is the object of criticism or vice versa. Sociologists also identified the factor of curiosity that influenced getting into the top 100 new influencers. Unfamiliar surnames and their heated discussion in the media, especially on the air of state channels and radio stations, aroused interest even among the most conservative part of consumers of this content, and led to an increase in their rating.

    “The trust rating demonstrates what the Russians lacked during self-isolation – entertainment content, spectacles. Having disappeared from visibility during the quarantine period, many artists return with concerts, performances and new shows, which leads to an increase in the trust of musicians, actors and TV presenters. And in politics, we observe similar trends: against the background of support or resistance to the government’s actions in the fight against the pandemic, not all statesmen and politicians were able to maintain the trust of Russians or fit into the rules of show business. Only Putin and Urgant retained 1st and 11th places, respectively, ”comments Andrei Milekhin, president of the Romir research holding, vice president of Gallup International, founder of the Mile Group and doctor of sociological sciences.


    This research was conducted on the basis of the Romir Single Source Panel, which involves 4000 people. Adult Russians over 14+, representing the urban population of Russia 100+, answered the question: “Which of the public figures of Russia do you trust? Name 7 people, where the first will be the one you trust the most.”

    Based on the results of the survey, a point rating of individuals was compiled. The votes cast for each person were counted, taking into account the place of his mention: that is, 7 (seven) points were assigned to the first place, 6 (six) points for the second, and so on up to the seventh place.

    For each public person, a trust audience and affinitive indices for various fields of activity, services, and goods are calculated.

    For many leaders, dynamics can be calculated. In the mid-90s, within the framework of the All-Russian omnibus, Romir regularly measured the trust in public figures, built federal and regional ratings of persons. A number of these

    However, notwithstanding the whoops of joy that will no doubt burst forth from the rubberduckians on hearing the above news — and interestingly, ROMIR does not go cock-a-hoop over Navalny’s rating improvement nationwide — Putin still enjoys a whopping majority in the trust sakes, but as I always say: bullshit baffles brains, and the Western media have been pouring forth massive propaganda non-stop about the Russian bullshitter in chief. And Russians are aware of what the Western media vomits forth.

    Cue the resident occasional troll to comment on all of the above, which person will no doubt be in raptures on learning of the above, as anything that is perceived by him to have brought discomfiture to the Russian state seems to gladden his heart.


    1. Further to the above:

      Western pundits confounded again as Putin’s popularity rises despite major shift in Russian news consumption from TV to online
      14 Oct, 2020 14:46

      Contradicting pundits who predicted that the Covid crisis would put a permanent dent in Putin’s popularity, the Russian president’s approval rating has bounced back to upwards of 69 percent, according to the latest survey by pollsters Levada.

      Coming on top of recent victories in Russia’s regional elections by the pro-Putin United Russia party, the survey demonstrates that the president and his movement continue to enjoy considerable popular backing.

      As Patrick Armstrong has already pointed out in his SITREP 22 OCTOBER 2020:

      CLUELESS. Paul Robinson reminds us that so many Western “experts” haven’t a clue: Putin is popular because Russians think he’s doing a good job, not because “state TV” tells them he is.

      Again from Patrick Armstrong and of possible interest to the resident troll:

      Russophrenia – or How a Collapsing Country Runs the World
      October 20, 2020

      Russia, Russia ever failing: will fail in 1992, finished in 2001, failed in 2006, failed in 2008, failing in 2010, failed in 2015. Russia’s failing economy, isolation, ancient weapons, instability; a gas station masquerading as a country. Doomed to fail in Syria and losing influence even in its neighbourhood in 2020.

      A country with GDP comparable to that of Australia cannot afford to be a superpower, fight a protracted war in Syria, fight in the Ukraine and develop its own stealth fighter and other equipment to match the United States.

      And on and on it goes!

      Wonder what they think in Helsinki?


    2. I have said this before.

      Opinion polls are designed to shape opinion – and should always be viewed with caution or in my view discarded completely.

      Liked by 1 person

      1. Total agreement. Such polls are used to sway opinion – get with the winner! Don’t be left behind!

        By proper selection of the sample, asking questions in a certain way or just fabrication of results is all that it takes to create the impression of a landslide of support for whatever one is promoting. The intent, as alluded to earlier, is to cause despair and surrender in the opposing side.

        There was a lot of this during the 2016 US presidential campaign and a lot of it in the current campaign. Every night we learn that Biden has established a commanding lead in all key area, mail-in ballots are at record levels and most from democrat voters (how do they know?). Yet, Trump can turn out large public rallies while Biden is speaking to mostly empty parking lots whenever he ventures outside of his basement.

        The more sinister purpose is to guarantee massive demonstrations/violence if Trump were to win.


    3. I believe I said any number of times that the main thrust of the ‘poisoning’ was to get people talking about Lyosha and to make his name a household word – no end of previous Russian studies and polls smirked that hardly anyone in Russia knew who he was, and many who did thought he was a floating turd. Well , keeping him in the news cycle day after day has certainly worked a treat to cure that. And he is such a shameless prostitute and liar that he has no problem coming across all big-eyed and innocent, and promising Russians to pull down the stars and hand one to every voter, in a bid to earn their approbation, just as western politicians do. During election week, the candidate of your choice would come to your house and wash your dinner dishes every night if you promised to vote for them. Having done so, if you showed up to ask for a selfie with your new best friend, he/she would have security escort you off the property.


  64. Vatican rebuts US protests over China deal

    Pact allows Catholic bishops in China to be approved by both the Chinese communist party and the Vatican.


    Is there anyone the US isn’t trying to bully? Their obsession with containing China by copy pasting their strategy for the Soviet Union is retarded. It’s more of ‘if you are not with us, you are against us.’


  65. Via RT, this is absolutely incredible!

    Likely, this is the same speech given to heads of government in private. Giving the same speech in public smells of desperation.


    1. I guess that the speaker was warning the audience of how the US operates and not delivering a threat on the behalf of the US. Regardless, he hit all of the right points.


  66. From a Russian blog:

    Of interest to trolls who think the sun shines out of the USA’s arse:

    В США массово закрываются заводы и колхозы, но никто не поднимает по этому поводу вой в интернете

    In the U.S., plants and collective farms are being shut down on a massive scale, but not a voice is being raised about this on the Internet.
    Yesterday .

    Of course, I wrote about “collective farms” more as an analogy so that it would be easier for those to whom this note is dedicated to realize that not “everything is bad” in either of them and that there are more than enough ways out of this situation.

    Of course, there have never been any collective farms in the United States, although, there have always been fairly large and not so large farms that have provided jobs for the local population. They still exist, but every year they are becoming fewer and fewer. Here is a quote from an American source:

    Wisconsin, where dairy exhibitions used to be held, is considered one of the centres of dairy farming in the country. However, the state lost 465 dairy farms in 2017, 638 in 2018, and 551 in 2019. This is evidenced by data from the US Department of Agriculture, Trade and Consumer Protection.

    This is only one state and only one branch of agriculture. Why are American “collective farms” going bankrupt? The reasons are quite commonplace — huge concerns that are engaged not only in the production of agricultural products, but also in the development of innovative technologies, have flooded the market with cheap products containing GMOs and chemicals.

    All this action is fueled by the open GMO lobby in the US government (corruption in our opinion), which, despite the fact that America is the largest producer of genetically modified products in the world, is not even obliged to declare its presence on the packaging.

    As a result, farming has become unprofitable and there has been a population drift from rural areas to the big cities.

    Something painfully familiar, is it not? Only now there is no howling and wailing all over the American world about this. Residents of the United States are sober-minded people: if an enterprise is unprofitable, it should be closed. We sighed and moved on to a new place. And no one, mind you, writes in the comments “What has Trump brought this country to? All the collective farms have been closed!”

    Generally speaking as regards factories and large enterprises, in the States the story is worse than it was after the collapse of the USSR. Do you know what the “Rust Belt” is? Well, at least Google it or read it up in Wikipedia. In hundreds of depopulated cities that were once industrial centres — in Rochester, Syracuse, Buffalo, Pittsburgh, Flint, Allentown, Erie, Cleveland, Toledo, Youngstown, Detroit, Lansing, Gary, Indianapolis, South Bend, Milwaukee, Chicago, Springfield, Duluth, etc …. millions of people have been forced to move, to simply abandon their homes, for which it had been impossible to find a buyer.

    And, again, mind you, no one went to rallies with slogans and demanded that the government urgently build a new plant, since there is an understanding that a plant is not built by the government, but by private investors — in other words, by the same kind of folk as they, and so such a demand that something be done means that one should demand that something be done by oneself. However, only a madman would think of investing money in some small, outlying town simply because there are 10,000 unemployed there.

    And that is why, according to all the same American statistics, the average American moves 5-6 times in his life, looking for a new job and better living conditions. Nobody sits around the same place his whole life, boozing and whinging whilst watching over the graves of his forebears.

    I should like to tell you about Detroit in more detail. For the history of this city is more than remarkable. Just in case, let me remind you that Detroit was once one of the three largest cities in the United States.

    The bankruptcy began after the Second World War, when the enterprises that had been commandeered into the military-industrial complex were left out of this business.

    In 1967, a series of riots of the black population swept over it, as a result of which the “whites” chose to move to quieter places. (Now everything is as before, 83% of the population consisting of “African Americans”.)

    Here is a video: “Detroit. Drug dealers, prostitutes and gangsters”

    And here is a photo gallery: “The Dying City of Detroit, USA”.

    Other plants began to close. There is a whole complex of reasons for this. The rest of the residents preferred to trade in drugs and stay at home on benefits; an energy crisis broke out, as a result of which the demand for cars fell sharply; then a financial one, which affected no fewer people because, as is customary in the States, most of the “white” population of the city was involved precisely in the “service sector” (insurance, medicine, banks, loans), which, in fact, constitute towards the very inflated GDP of the country.

    Detroit Mayor Kwame Kilpatrick was convicted of fraud and sentenced to 28 years in prison. Over the next 10 years, 7 construction companies and 12 directors were charged with corruption. (OH, AGAIN SOMETHING PAINFULLY FAMILIAR!)

    In 2010, there were 100,000 (THAT IS ONE HUNDRED THOUSAND, FOR THOSE WHO DO NOT UNDERSTAND) abandoned buildings!

    In 2013, the city was officially declared bankrupt.

    So here is what I am getting at, my dear readers. For our ZIL, the USA had its own Studebaker, and for our AZLK the USA had its own Packard. The list, for one reason or another, for the closure of US auto enterprises only, comes to more than 2,100. Here on Wikipedia is the complete list.
    Yes, yes, I can see that many of them ceased to exist at the dawn of the 20th century, so what? On the territory of America there was neither a Revolution nor a Second World War. Grow and develop!

    They had Pan American for our bankrupt Transaero, Polaroid for our “Рекорд” factory..

    But this is not the most important thing. The fact is that in the United States there are no forums for cities like Detroit, where agitated residents discuss the corruption of the mayor and the inaction of the president. No one howls in the comments in Zen posts about closed factories, collective farms, lost jobs and low wages. Everyone gets up and goes from their localities, moving off to where there is work. You do not have to go so far — in my St. Petersburg office, 40% of the employees “come in large numbers” from other cities. And people have everything — mortgaged apartments, cars, and trips abroad. By the way, I recently took an apartment in a new building at 2.5%. And you know, nobody “IS GOING BACK TO WHERE HE CAME FROM“.

    So there are opportunities to live happily in our country. Which is what I wish for you.


  67. More shite from the US agent in yet another interview, this time with the German arsewipe “Bild“:

    Poison victim Navalny on former Chancellor Schröder

    Schröder is Putin’s errand boy

    … who defends killers.

    The US agent told “Bild”:

    The fact that I was poisoned with a military chemical weapon is madness. If it were not for the clear results of the Bundeswehr, French and Swedish laboratories, I myself should not have believed it. We know a lot about Putin and the Kremlin. But to poison a civilian with Novichok so that he dies on an aeroplane, I should not have even believed that the Kremlin would do that. But now it has been proven beyond all doubt. BY DENYING THAT I WAS POISONED WITH “Novichok” – IS LIKE DENYING THE EXISTENCE OF THE CHEMICAL AGENT ITSELF. But perhaps their main goal was not to kill me, but to intimidate people all over Russia.

    After having allowed Navalny to have his say, the “Bild” journalists, unlike their colleagues from “Spiegel”, took the bull by the horns, as they say, and pressed him with a direct question:

    Bild: Will Putin fall?

    Navalny: I am not a political scientist and I do not make predictions. But if there were fair elections tomorrow, we would defeat Putin. I have no doubt about it: if there were fair elections, we would defeat his ruling party. But Putin is crazy about money and power. He would do anything to stay in power.
    In the cellars on Lubyanka, Cagliostro and Nicolas Flamel (see “Harry Potter and the Philosopher’s Stone”) have been sitting for a long time in alchemical laboratories, brewing up an elixir of immortality !

    Bild: Does this mean that he will try to kill you again?

    Navalny: The Russian people deserve to live a happy and ordinary life. And the biggest obstacle on the way to it is Putin’s aspiration of becoming the richest and most powerful man in the world. I oppose him and try to protect myself, my family and my people.

    Bild: The Kremlin has frozen your accounts and confiscated your apartment. Where do you plan to live and what will you live on when you return to Russia?

    Navalny: This is nothing new for me. My accounts have been frozen several times before, and my apartment was confiscated. I am used to it — unlike “Novichok” and this coma (laughs). But I do not know what will happen when I have returned. I might be arrested at the airport. I just do not know.

    Bild: Ex-Chancellor Schröder, who specifically works for Rosneft, said that it is impossible to talk about your poisoning by Novichok yet, since there are no facts, and if there are no facts, then all this remains “speculation”. What would you say to him?

    Navalny: This is very insulting. This is humiliating for the German people. And especially for the Bundeswehr laboratory. Did you falsify the result of your investigation? Gerhard Schröder receives money from Putin. But if he is now trying to deny this chemical attack, this is really very disappointing. It is one thing being a lobbyist for Putin. But now he is trying to protect a KILLER. But I know that even his own party is very negative about Schröder’s work. It’s just humiliating to hear such words from the former chancellor. This is very difficult for me to understand. After all, he is the former chancellor of Europe’s most powerful country. Schröder is now Putin’s errand boy who defends killers. Schröder has an official salary, but I have no doubt that there are hidden fees. This is my personal opinion as a lawyer who has been studying Rosneft and Gazprom for several years. I have no document in which it would be written in black and white:”Here, Herr Schroeder, here is your portfolio full of money. But I have no doubt that Schröder is receiving secret payments from Putin”.

    Bild: Schröder and other Kremlin supporters say they are on friendly terms with Russia. Do you think they are friends of Russia?

    Navalny: Can people be friends of Russia if they steal money from Russians? I want people in Russia to have the same access to medical care as I do at Charité. But even the richest people in Russia do not have such access, because there are no such hospitals. And why not? All because of Putin and his friends, people like Gerhard Schröder. They steal Russian money and make Russians poor. Think about space technology. When I was a child, we were very proud to be at the forefront. It all ended. The country is decaying, and these people are contributing to the decay of my country. They are not friends of Russia.

    Bild: They say you are used to being stalked. But still: are you not afraid at all?

    Navalny: I am not afraid. However, I am not crazy, and I understand all the risks. I have to live with this. I am a well known person, it is easier for me even when they try to kill me. There are generous people who helped arrange an aeroplane to take me to Germany. But if you are an independent activist or journalist and you are killed, no one will know about it except your family. If I were scared, I should be ashamed.

    Bild: What does your son who is with you in Berlin think? Does he also want to return to Russia? Is he afraid for you?

    Navalny: My son is doing well. My children support me. They know how it feels when men in black masks search their nursery, rummage through their toys, ostensibly to find something. My son has a child’s bank account where he was saving money for a new laptop. And his account was also frozen. We told him: sorry, Zakhar, but this money now belongs to Putin. He does not understand that Putin needs his $300 so as to be happy.

    Bild: There are German politicians who expect Russia to investigate the assassination attempt on you. What would you say to them them?

    Navalny: There has not even been an attempt to present this as an investigation. No investigation has yet been conducted in Russia. I am not naive. I believe that this was a direct order from Putin, and I do not think there will ever be a real investigation. I also understand that there is little Western politicians can do if any Russian is poisoned in Russia. But it is important for the West to investigate Russia’s use of chemical weapons. The OPCW must investigate this. Otherwise, the Kremlin regime may be tempted to use chemical weapons against its opponents. We only know about failed poison attacks, but we do not know how many successful kills there have been.

    Bild: What should the German government do with Valery Gergiev, who has supported Putin for many years and is now the chief conductor of the Munich Philharmonic?

    Navalny: We must give him a choice. Gergiev supported Putin in the elections. If he loves the regime so much and wants Russia not to follow the European path, then you must tell him: you are a very talented musician, but we will no longer allow you to enter the European Union. You can enjoy the Putin regime in Russia. Or Gergiev will change his mind and stop at least publicly supporting Putin. There are a lot of such people in Russia. They are very talented and very disingenuous. I am glad you mentioned Gergiev, he is a great example. These people need to be pressurized. They will have to turn their backs on Putin because they understand that Europe will no longer tolerate it if they assert in Russia that Europe is something very terrible. Gergiev will not try to poison me with Novichok, but he supports everything that Putin does. People like him should be banned from entering the European Union, and you know that 99% of all Russians welcome this.

    Bild: What did you do after you had left the hospital?

    Navalny: On Monday I had my first meal in a restaurant. It was the German dish of pork knuckle . It might be a cliché, but I loved it. I heard that Berlin is famous for street food. I look forward to the opportunity of just going out, sitting down somewhere and ordering a kebab and a beer.

    Bild: There is a big difference in Russia between Moscow, St. Petersburg and the regions. How do people far from the megacities feel about Putin?

    Navalny: We have proven that people in the megacities are critical of Putin. Our main goal was to destroy the myth that the regions are walling up behind of Putin. The Kremlin is afraid of this. After the pension reform, and after wages have fallen for seven consecutive years, the Kremlin fears this myth will fall apart.

    Bild: Mr Navalny, one last question: do you think you will live long enough to see a Russia without Putin?

    Navalny: I do not know. But I am doing everything I can to ensure that my children have the opportunity to see Russia without Putin, a normal, prosperous European Russia.

    What a totally in love with himself heap of bullshitting shite!

    He talks such shite that I really do think he has blown them.


    1. The objective seems to be to get as many people as possible to sue him for defamation – this, I suppose, will ‘prove’ that they are ‘Putin’s errand-boys’. And why not? He has no assets that are technically his, can’t pay any judgments levied against him, and Germany will protect him from going to jail, while he lives comfortably on ‘the kindness of strangers’. What disincentive is there against shooting his mouth off as long as there are outlets that want to interview him, as they are doubtless being encouraged to do? And all of it serves both to keep him on the front pages, and to burnish his credentials as ‘Putin’s fiercest critic’. Whoopty-fuckin’-doo.

      Going into raptures in the western press over how cool Navalny is will not make him popular in Russia – quite the opposite, in fact. He could not get elected in Russia, and could not ride at the head of a regime-change charge, either. He is so disliked in Russia that he can probably not ever return, and so he will live the life of a spoiled western mouthpiece, pampered and cosseted in the west. Success, from Navalny’s point of view, but I fail to see how he can be any more useful as a lever to pry Putin out of office, and doubtless future liberal bootlickers can be discredited simply by linking them to Navalny.

      It occurs to me that Navalny’s diddling of financial judgments against him – as probably will be the case – can also be used to illustrate that the west does not respect financial law, either; in fact, it only respects judgments it awards itself. Non-aligned countries can feel free to respect western-invoked ‘international law’ if they wish, so long as they understand there are no concrete rewards for it, they will be expected to adhere to western laws while the west feels no compulsion to observe theirs, and there is thus no real reason for obedience.


    2. It looks as if Navalny is discovering a new career he can exploit to the hilt, as a media talking-head who can be trotted out on TV and radio talk shows and various cultural festivals to spout his fake Novichok-poisoning ordeal drivel, and to write articles repeating his ordeal (with variations) for newspapers, journals, magazines and online blogs whenever he needs money. Masha Gessen better watch out for some competition!


      1. Happy family under guard in a fashionable Black Forest village Kurort — and at whose expense?

        The Bullshitter writes in the above Instagram:

        Веселые родители – счастливый ребёнок.

        If you should check that out with Google, as indeed most would: Happy parents — happy child

        As a matter of fact, the Russian adjective весёлый means: happy, inclined to laugh, full of fun, cheerful, jolly.

        So the comment from the survivor of Putin’s Novichok assassination attempt commented in his above instagram:

        Cheerful parents — happy child.

        The word весёлый also used to translate as “gay”, but contemporary English-Russian dictionaries no longer do that.

        As it happens, obstreperous person that I am, I still used “gay” in the UK when resident there over 25 years ago with the meaning that I had been brought up to understand — just to bug folk, see, e.g. “Im feeling quite gay today for some reason, although, basically, I’m a serious person”.

        Anyway, I digress.

        I fail to see how the Bullshitter can describe the scene pictured in the above instagram as one depicting “cheerful parents and a happy child”: they all look totally pissed-off!

        And the weather in the photograph does not look too good either.

        A better caption to the miracle-man’s above Instagram would have been:

        Totally pissed off: wife nagging, kid pulling his face and being a pain in the arse, shit weather!

        By the way, some Russian wag has replied to the lying bastard’s comment:

        Опять что-то замышляют — Again plotting something?

        Mustn’t be one of those Russians who, according to a recent opinion poll, trusts what Navalny says.

        Might have even have been the Dark Lord who posted that reply.


        1. I wouldn’t give him the benefit of the oxygen of publicity and play his game, let alone giving Der Beagle publicity also. The only exception to this is if something actually new happens, i.e. the Schroeder libel case against him goes ahead. I’m just not interested.


        2. Well, Lyosha must now always walk a fine line between enjoying life like other folk, albeit with the appropriate restraint, and bearing the martyr’s burden of Putin’s opposition. It would not do to see the happy trio larking about in the sunny fields with flowers in their hair, laughing merrily after such a close brush with death – it changes you, you know? So in a way, Putin has taken even that from them.

          The Bullshitter is just playing a role, and delivering the performance of his life from the look of it, considering he was a hair away from irrelevance like Nemtsov, and now is a household word and borderline celebrity.


  68. On that traitorous bastard Venediktov again: much the same as I have posted above, but I loathe the bastard so much — almost as much as I do Navalny — that I cannot help myself from posting the following:

    А это уже, простите, госизмена!
    Главный редактор «Эха Москвы» публично обвинил власти России в отравлении Навального
    Андрей Соколов

    Forgive me, but this is treason!
    The editor-in-chief of “Echo of Moscow” publicly accused the Russian authorities of poisoning Navalny

    Andrey Sokolov

    Listen, but this is already an offence under the Criminal Code! First of all, for libel. This is exactly the conclusion one is drawn to when considering the statement of the editor-in-chief of the main information mouthpiece of the liberal opposition of the radio station Echo of Moscow Alexei Venediktov, who on Thursday publicly accused the Russian authorities of trying to kill a person with a chemical warfare agent.

    “Up to this very minute, I do not doubt that Aleksei Navalny was poisoned by “Novichok” or a substance similar to “Novichok” or a substance from the “Novichik” group. But the fact that he was poisoned with a chemical warfare agent is obvious to me ”, A. Venediktov said confidently on the air at the Ekho Moskvy radio station.

    He stressed that the available evidence allegedly does not allow the opposite to be asserted. “Perhaps later some additional information will arise that will shake my opinion, but today I do not see how this can arise. There is direct evidence — 5 laboratories have found traces in Navalny’s analyses caused by a substance similar to Novichok. Secondly, where are his clothes, in which they brought him to the hospital? Why haven’t they been handed back to him? What are they hiding? And where is the video footage of the hotel corridors that were seized? These are three [items of evidence]”, A. Venediktov explained.

    The chief editor of Ekho noted that, “on the one hand, there are laboratory data, on the other, the incomprehensible actions of the Russian government. All this leads me to the idea that, most likely, Navalny was poisoned with a chemical warfare agent, at least with the support of the state or state structures”, A. Venediktov concludes with a significant air.

    A banal lie

    Where did he get such confidence? Is he a chemical warfare expert? A doctor? An Investigator? No?

    Then it is clear that he was able to have constructed such accusations only from reports of unfounded statements by Western politicians and fake articles in the Western press, and also on the basis of the unsubstantiated conclusions of the Bundeswehr specialists, who made the initial Navalny diagnosis, and even on the conclusions of the Western laboratories, to which these “doctors” in uniform sent the analyses processed by them for research.

    And why does Venediktov say nothing, for example, about the conclusion of the OPCW, which did not find any “Novichok” in Navalny’s analyses? Why is he silent about the fact that the German side categorically refuses to acquaint Russian experts with its conclusions, referring to some considerations of “secrecy”? Why does Germany refuse to cooperate with Russia in the investigation of what happened to Navalny?

    It is quite obvious that in fact, Venediktov, of course, does not and cannot have any “proof”, and he is simply lying in a banal way..

    But why? Yes, for the simple reason that for the liberal opposition, any means are good if they are used to pin blame on the government. But does the editor-in-chief of Ekho Moskvy now understand that blatantly and, unsubstantiated, accusing the Russian government of poisoning Navalny with a chemical warfare agent, he can now be prosecuted for this libel under Article 129 of the Criminal Code of the Russian Federation, paragraph 5, which reads:

    “Defamatory actions, manifested in combination with a false accusation of a serious crime, entail punishment in the form of fines of up to 5,000,000 rubles or the award of correctional labor for 480 hours”.

    A convincing statement from the president

    Moreover, exactly on the day when the slanderous statement of its editor-in-chief appeared on the Echo website, Russian President Vladimir Putin, whom he blatantly accused of involvement in Navalny’s poisoning, gave at a meeting of the Valdai discussion club once again an exhaustive explanation of the strange situation with blogger.

    The President recalled that he personally had asked the Prosecutor General’s Office to allow Aleksei Navalny to leave Russia, despite possible restrictions against this because ofa criminal case. Putin noted that he had given such an order immediately after the blogger’s wife had approached him.

    “I immediately instructed the prosecutor’s office to check the possibility of his going abroad for treatment. Meaning that they could not have released him, because he had restrictions related to judicial investigation and a criminal case”, explained the president. The head of state also noted that in a conversation with one of his European colleagues, he proposed sending Russian specialists to Germany for a joint investigation.

    “We would have worked on the spot and received some materials. And these materials could have been used as the basis for initiating a criminal case, if it really is a criminal act, to investigate it. But they will not give anything”, he said.

    In addition, Putin expressed doubts about the information about the discovery of traces of “Novichok” in Navalny’s body. “Okay, they said they had found traces of the Novichok. Then all this was transferred to the OPCW … and suddenly we are told: this is not a “Novichok”, this is something else. So is this “Novichok” or not? There are already doubts about what was said at the beginning”, the President added.

    He also noted that if the government “had wanted to poison someone, they would hardly have sent him to Germany for treatment”.

    “The fatally poisoned person” is already at a resort

    Let us remind those who do not know, Navalny was hospitalized on August 20 in Omsk after he had fallen ill on an aeroplane. Omsk doctors stated that the chief diagnosis was a metabolic disorder, which had caused a sharp change in blood sugar. According to Russian doctors, no poisons were found in Navalny’s blood and urine. At the request of the Navalny family, he was transported to Germany for treatment, after which the German government, with reference to military doctors, said that the Russian had allegedly been poisoned with a substance from the Novichok group of toxic warfare agents. Later, the Cabinet of Ministers of Germany reported that the conclusions of German experts had been confirmed by the laboratories of Sweden and France. And the OPCW said that a substance was found in Navalny’s body, similar in characteristics to Novichok, but not on the lists of prohibited chemicals. As a result, Navalny was discharged from the hospital, his condition is satisfactory, but the attending doctors have not ruled out his complete recovery. And judging by the latest statements of the blogger and the photos of the “victim” of the deadly “Novichok” posted on the Internet, Navalny is vigorous, moderately well-fed and gaining strength for new “feats” in one of the German fashionable resorts, where he is carefully guarded by the police, and in his free time outdoors, he talks to his CIA mentors.

    And forgive me, but this is treason!

    But this is not just about lying on the air. What Mr. Venediktov and his “Ekho” team are now doing concerns not only a law about libel, but on a much more serious accusation. The fact is that the Venediktites have already begun to fabricate fakes in support of Western provocations about Russia’s alleged involvement in what happened to Navalny. So, along with the accusation of Venediktov himself, the Ekho website has also posted a sort of “informational” message about the dismissal of the first deputy director of the FSB, General of the Army Sergei Smirnov.

    “Putin, according to media reports”, writes the author of this message on “Echo”, “has dismissed the curator of the Second FSB Service, which is associated with the poisoning of Navalny … RBC sources say that Smirnov is retiring because of his seniority — this year he turned 70. At the same time, “Novaya Gazeta” reminds us that in the FSB Smirnov managed the work of the military counterintelligence department, the economic security service, and the service for the protection of the constitutional order. It is also called the Second Service of the FSB, and it is this service, as claimed by the British newspaper “The Guardian”, citing sources in the intelligence services of Germany, Britain and France, who may have been involved in the poisoning of Russian politician Alexei Navalny.

    Got the hint? Is it clear what is to be read between the lines of this sort of “informational message”? It is bad, they say: the general poisoned Navalny, so he was fired! That is, Ekho Moskvy, run by the notorious liar Venediktov, directly fabricates, with his own hands, a deliberate fake, again accusing the Russian government of involvement in a criminal offence – an attempt to kill a person.

    Well, the fabrication of such a “canard” is no longer just slander. This is direct complicity in a provocative political campaign organized by Western intelligence services against Russia, that this is nothing else but … betrayal, treason!

    Article 275 of the Criminal Code of the Russian Federation “High treason” says, in particular, that a person who is found guilty of “… providing financial, material, technical, consulting or other assistance to a foreign state, international or foreign organization or their representatives in activities directed against the security of the Russian Federation” shall be punished by “imprisonment for a term of twelve to twenty years with a fine of up to five hundred thousand rubles or to an amount of the convicted person’s salary or other income for a period of up to three years, or without that, a restriction of liberty for a term of up to two years.

    Of course, Mr. Venediktov did not provide “financial and material-technical assistance” to the West, but, as is quite obvious, he did provide “other assistance” directed against the security of the Russian Federation. He began to publicly disseminate deliberately false speculation that undermined the reputation of our country abroad, and took part in an information campaign hostile to Russia, which resulted in new sanctions imposed against our country.

    You have become a nuisance, Mr. Venediktov. It is time now to answer to the Russian law … to the fullest extent.


    1. The linked article below raises a number of provocative facts. First among them is that flu cases have decreased by 98%. That’s right, only 2% of the normal rate for the flu. Why?

      The article suggests, despite hand waving to the contrary, the flu may still be there but misdiagnosed as Covid-19 (perhaps deliberately so in my opinion). Secondly, people who have been exposed to Covid appear to be immune to the flu. The official data suggests 20% of the US population would meet that criteria but it could be much higher.


    2. Venediktov is just trying to boost his ratings. It seems fairly obvious from his provocative statements – “I would like to believe otherwise, but so far the evidence that I have been presented with makes the conclusion inescapable” – that he is encouraging the Russian government to officially deny his charges, and to get a dialogue going which he can feature on his show; Venediktov, speaking truth to power, bla, bla, bla. He is necessarily framing his challenges as provocatively as possible because he hopes for a response. There is nothing illegal in what he has said so far, which amounts to what I have suggested: I’d like to believe our government would not do such a thing, and I’m reserving my final judgment for now, but from what I have seen so far they are guilty as sin. He plainly hopes the government will respond with a denial – look! the government is worried about what Venediktov thinks! And he will blossom and prosper from the ‘poisoning’ the way Navalny has.

      Even better would be if the government responded heavy-handedly, shouldering its way into Ekho Moskvy’s offices and confiscating files and computers and the like. Venediktov has been careful to walk the edge of the precipice, and he really hasn’t said anything that rises to treason – How can he be held responsible if the awful lies of the Germans and other westerners have turned his head? He just says, this is what I have heard, and nobody has given me a reason to disbelieve it. It seems fairly obvious he hopes to provoke the Russian government into a back-and-forth which will make his show relevant and important and talked-about.

      Given the casually cold way Putin has treated him on the occasions he has spoken to him publicly, I am in my turn confident that he will just let Venediktov rail pointlessly and without rejoinder. Be assured he is being watched carefully for anything he says and does which would make him liable for prosecution.


      1. He sounds to me what in America they call provokative radio personalities Shock Jocks. I don’t see him doing this in u-Rope and being accepted for long, but that is the point. They’re ‘heroes’ when they behave like this in the Evil Empire (TM), but the moment they actually move west, ball stapler, Femen etc. they disappear or get in to trouble. They have no other utility. A ‘one trick pony’ as they say.


  69. NASA makes a major announcement that their SOFIA flying observatory discovered water in sunlit regions of the moon. Stunning, Who could have suspected such?

    Why, the Soviet Union did back in 1976:

    he Soviet scientists went to great lengths to protect their samples from contamination once they returned to Earth – far more than the United States’ Apollo astronauts – but nonetheless, the Soviet trio “were not willing to stake their reputations on an absolute statement that terrestrial contamination was completely avoided,” though they noted they took “every possible precaution” to protect it, Crotts wrote in 2012.

    Despite this, according to Crotts, by 2012 their work had not been cited a single time. In NASA’s news release on Monday, the US government space agency makes clear that when they refer to previous “indications” water might be present on the sunlit side of the moon, they are referring to US efforts in the 1990s, such as the 1994 Clementine spacecraft and 1998 Lunar Prospector orbiter, not to any Soviet finding.

    IIRC, “proof” of the irrelevancy of Soviet/Russian science is that their research findings are rarely cited. In the case of water on the moon – zero citations. This fact dovetails nicely with our earlier discussions of the overwhelmingly shoddy/biased nature of technical publications in the West.


    1. This is similar to the old argument La Russophobe and I used to have, whenever the ‘ratings’ of world universities were updated. She would crow that an American university was almost always first and they dominated the top 10, while there was no Russian university even in the top 100. This, of course ‘proved’ how smart Americans are compared to Russians, and how much the world craves and values an American education.

      A big part of those ratings, as well as what gets professors on the tenure track, is publishing – how many academic papers have the faculty of University X published? Because that’s ‘contributing to education’. I suppose few will be surprised that over 80% of such papers are published in the English language. Few, if any papers published in Russian are noticed at all by the western rankers of educational pizzazz. Quite a few things Russia does are ignored by the west because it is easy and convenient to do so, and when it is it will pass unchallenged.


      1. Few, if any papers published in Russian are noticed

        Back when I was an undergraduate, many years ago, this was a seriously annoying problem. There was some very good Russian research in areas I was interested in but it was more or less inaccessible. In a pinch, I could, maybe, have read one paper a year with dictionaries all around me.


        1. I recall reading years ago a letter sent by an irate reader of the UK “Daily Telegraph” when that rag was, as per usual, decrying Russia and all things Russian, which reader listed off all that he considered was wrong about the Evil Empire and its Orcish citizens. One of the buffoon’s top complaints was that Russians speak a language that no one can either read or understand.

          I was tempted to reply: боллокс!


          1. Very true but given our lack of Russian it could be maddening and AFAIK there was no decent funding for the social sciences.

            OTOH a classmate of mine who did a summer at Library and Archives Canada said he could classify every geological paper in the USSR even if he knew no Russian when he arrived.


  70. Is this the thin edge of the Chinese-sanctions wedge, at long last?

    The companies mentioned are in haste to point out that foreign military sales are government-to-government and are less a company decision. Also, it is the companies’ defense units which are subject to sanctions. Still, Boeing fell 3.7% on the news, Lockheed 2.7% and Raytheon also 3.7%. China has the world’s largest fleet of 737 MAX planes, and Chinese orders form the bulk of the company’s backlog order book.


  71. Well, well – look who has been tapped to lead the One World Government’s COVID-vaccine acceptance effort. Cass Sunstein, who led Barrack Obama’s Office of Information and Regulatory Affairs, and our old PR pals, Hill & Knowlton.

    You all remember Hill & Knowlton – the consultancy firm hired by the Kuwaiti Government to persuade Americans and the world to get behind Washington’s decision to wipe out Saddam Hussein and destroy Iraq, Version One.

    Of course, this was not a deception operation which fooled the US government – the Washington Hill & Knowlton office was run by Craig Fuller, Poppy Bush’s Chief of Staff when he was Vice-President.

    Expect the attacks against ‘anti-Vaxxers’ and ‘Covidiots’ to take on a whole new dimension of nastiness, not to mention determination.


  72. BBC bang at it again with its misleading headlines!

    Syria war: ‘Russian air strikes kill dozens’ in Idlib
    Published 17 hours ago

    The murderous swine! Must have struck another hospital again — or a market, or a wedding feast!

    Hang on though!

    Russian air strikes in northern Syria have killed more than 50 Turkish-backed militia fighters in the mainly rebel-held province of Idlib, reports say.

    Oh, I see! The murderous swine have killed headchoppers!

    What beasts those Russians are!

    The article reads further:

    A training base for an Islamist group called Faylaq al-Sham was hit.

    So they missed the local hospital?

    Oh, and lookee here! The BBC source is none other than:

    UK-based monitoring group the Syrian Observatory for Human Rights put the number of dead at 78.

    It’s that bloke in Coventry again!

    Liked by 1 person

    1. You beat me to it ME! This is mealy-mouthed Al-Beeb s’Allah at its careful, onside best. Remember, they only become (literal) headchoppers when they are over here (western u-Rope/US). Over there…


  73. Euractiv: France wants broad Digital Services Act rules on content, documents reveal

    France believes that regulation on online content as part of the upcoming Digital Services Act (DSA) should not be restricted solely to illegal material, but should also cover areas including disinformation and harmful content, documents obtained by EURACTIV reveal.

    …“On the contrary, the scope of regulation should cover the entire moderation function operated by online platforms, thereby including not only illegal content but also any content prohibited by the platform, such as content that is legal but harmful and disinformation.”…

    ‘legal but harmful and disinformation’

    So a political judgement then. This from a country that holds its principles of Liberté, Egalité et Fraternité in a vacuum disassociated from real life. This really would be the thin end of the wedge.

    So where does the Charlie Yebdo Prophet Mohammed cartoons lie in this? Being France, I expect them to have their cake and eat it, i.e. one rule for a select few, and completely different rules for the rest. The Elites will be fully protected from ’embarassment’ and everyone else is fair game. France is already eating itself but even by their standards this is impressive!

    How they expect this to get past the ECHR and the ECJ will be interesting. Maybe the judges will just say it is not their remit or some other dodge such as ‘a declaration in itself is not incompatible with the law.’

    The rest of the world will take note yet again of Do as we say, not as we do. u-Ropean values that everyone else should aspire to.


    1. Yes, the litmus test for ‘freedoms’ and ‘protecting our country’ should always be, “What would we be saying about it if Russia was doing it?” And I think most here would agree that the western response to a Russian government announcement that it intends to rule on what the population is allowed to read, hear and know based on a state filter that the material constitutes harmful content or disinformation, even though it might be perfectly legal (i.e. not inciting the population to riot or overthrow their government), would be a great scream of outrage and agony.

      Just looking around at the political picture emerging, though, it might not be sites and venues such as RT that are the targets of this intent, but ‘COVID deniers’ and other realists who want to know what all the fuss and blowing of money and crippling of the economy were all about.


  74. Euractiv: Kyiv summons Hungarian envoy over election interference

    Ukraine’s foreign ministry summoned Budapest’s ambassador after Hungarian Foreign Minister Péter Szijjártó campaigned on social media for Hungarian Cultural Federation in Transcarpathia (KMKSZ) candidates during Sunday’s municipal elections (25 October), Hungarian news agency MTI reported via Evropeyskaya Pravda.

    … what it said were attempts to interfere in the country’s internal affairs, after a local NGO alleged that Hungarian state secretary for national policy, János Árpád Potápi, was campaigning for the candidates of the Hungarian Cultural Federation in Transcarpathia (KMKSZ) during his early October visit…

    …Budapest and Kyiv have been locked in a row over minority rights since Ukraine’s parliament in 2017 adopted a language law that mandated the use of Ukrainian in education and other aspects of public life…

    …In turn, Hungary continues to block Ukraine’s cooperation with NATO and the holding of Ukraine-NATO Commission talks.

    In a normal u-Ropean country you have the right (if recognized as a minority) to education in the state and your own ‘ethnic’ language. But the Ukraine is not a ‘normal u-Ropean country.’

    They pulled this same s/t with the significant number of Ukranian Russian speakers to the silence of Brussels and the west years earlier and made Ukrainian the only state language. That and other public threats effectively handed the Crimea back to Russia, not that the Pork Pie News Networks will tell you that.

    But Hungary can effectively push back and it does. Also Orban has form in bringing up the rights of ethnic Hungarians abroad when he wants to score domestic political points (sic Serbia).

    The big irony here is that Hungary is playing the role of western ‘we can interfere wherever we like’ and the Ukraine is like Russia telling them to f/k off!


  75. At last, dummer Fritz reacts! Well some of them — and they still show their willingness to believe the lying bastard Navalny’s tale.

    Süddeutsche Zeitung:

    25. Oktober 2020, 18:49 Uhr
    Gerhard Schröder
    Roulette mit Russland
    Die Rolle des Altkanzlers war schon länger umstritten. Doch seit der russische Oppositionelle Alexej Nawalny Schröder als ,,Laufburschen” Putins bezeichnet hat, ist die Debatte neu entfacht. Die Meinungen dazu gehen weit auseinander

    October 25, 2020, 6:49 p.m.
    Gerhard Schröder
    Roulette with Russia
    The role of the former chancellor has been controversial for a long time. But since the Russian oppositionist Alexei Navalny described Schröder as Putin’s “errand boy”, the debate has rekindled. Opinions differ widely.

    With his abuse of the former Federal Chancellor Schröder as “Putin’s Errand Boy”, Navalny abused his hospitality rights in the Federal Republic in the most brutal way. As a guest, in my opinion, he has no right to interfere in domestic politics. On top of that, his public nationalistic and xenophobic statements give me pause for thought. Of course, I condemn the poison attacks on him, on which the Russian government must finally speak out clearly — Wolfgang Heinz, Bad Krozingen.

    Of course you condemn the evil Russians, Arschloch!

    The attack on Navalny is condemned, but far from cleared up. The fact that German law enforcement authorities obviously do not want to work with Russian authorities does not make it any easier. In my opinion, German officials and the media also maintain a double standard when it comes to the Tiergarten murder, because the obvious murders in western democracies of their declared opponents, especially terrorists, can be regretted, but will hardly be condemned. The aggressors know what risks they are taking.

    When Gerhard Schröder puts his bets on Putin, that is still more realistic and of value to me than the mock naivety with which the Süddeutscher Zeitung supports this sinister Navalny in the media. If he came to power in Moscow, the tendencies towards nationalism, homophobia, anti-Semitism and xenophobia that already existed in the population would gain majority support and state doctrine. To misunderstand this and to condemn current Russian politics in a fluff is incomprehensible to me. This stance must be a holdover from the Cold War — Jürgen Scharf, Pulheim.

    Still begs the question that the Bullshitter was poisoned and that Russians are beasts to buggers, Jews and foreigners.

    Gerhard Schröder was one of the best Federal Chancellors that Germany has had. With his Agenda 2010 he got the economy going again, and Angela Merkel was able to reap the fruits of this work as Chancellor. Schröder was a Realpolitiker and represented Germany’s interests. And it is indeed in Germany’s greatest interest to have a good relationship with Russia and also with its President Putin. And in my opinion it is ridiculous when it is claimed that Putin commissioned the poisoning of Navalny and also ordered the murder in the [Berlin] zoo. [Der Berliner Tiergarten — ME.] A Russian head of state has far different responsibilities, and there is no evidence of such claims. Germany always wants to be such a great constitutional state, so highly moral. In the rule of law, however, the presumption of innocence applies, that is, as long as nothing has been proven, Putin must not be publicly suspected of contract murder — Peter Fendt, Marktoberdorf.

    Navalny is calling for Russia to be boycotted, Putin to be held accountable, Nord Stream 2 to be discontinued, and former Chancellor Schröder is called “Putin’s errand boy”. German politics, from Merkel to Habeck to Maas, hang on the Kremlin critic’s lips and literally give him a halo. Nevertheless, facts should be kept separate. Firstly, a malicious assassination attempt took place against Navalny. This is to be clarified, and the guilty are to be punished — and the guilty unequivocally convicted. This should not be disputed. Only it is currently not clear who carried out this poison attack, which is why it is inadmissible to pretend that the perpetrator and Putin have been identified, and nd so, on the other hand, to do so damages the argument.

    Secondly: Aleksei Navalny is by no means suitable as a role model, which he is currently hyped up to be. Because he not only stands for criticism of the oligarchy and corruption, but “makes open xenophobia acceptable”, as MDR and Deutsche Welle reported in 2017 and 2018. Navalny also claims, without any evidence, that “every second crime in Moscow is committed by immigrants”. If necessary, Navalny is also gets involved in the “Russian March”, a movement of right-wing national, right-wing extremist and openly xenophobic forces. While he proudly refers to such activities in Russia, he trivializes them in other western countries.

    German politicians should take note that Aleksei Navalny is two different things, the deeply regretted victim of a poison attack, but at the same time a more than questionable politician — Wolfram Salzer, Neustadt bei Coburg.

    Again, accepts the unproven “fact” that the play-acting lying bastard was indeed poisoned.

    Remember his rolling around and writhing on the deck, his howling and screaming.? That’s how the Bullshitter imagined a Novichok victim would react. But then, following his withdrawal from a medically induced coma, he learns other wise, and states he felt no pain, but knew he was dying.



    1. Yes, I thought the same regarding Navalny’s changing story regarding how it feels to die from Novichok. It gives credence to the proposition that Navalny and his gang conducted a free-lance operation based on a high confidence that the West had to play along. In any event, they certainly did play along.


      1. Utter bullshit!

        On the left: samples of the old style “Novichok” being collected by the British; on the right: Navalny’s FBK associates collecting samples of the new style ( said by folk to be “far better”) “Novichok”.

        I mean, who are they trying to kid?

        Do they think the general public consists of idiots?

        Apparently they do, and the general public is — at least, in the long psyched up to be scared shitless of Russia “Free World”, it seems to be.


    2. Merkel was the same German politician who grovelled to the Bush regime to forgive Germany for not supporting the illegal aggression against Iraq. Her regime should never have been confused for having any sort of Realpolitik.


  76. And the bad news keeps trickling in for Boeing, as All-Nippon Airlines (ANA) announces it will cut or delay new aircraft orders and retire 22 of its older Boeing 777 widebody jets.

    That news falls on the heels of Cathay Pacific’s decision to defer a $7 Billion order for 27 new 777X jets to beyond 2025, and American Airlines’ negotiated agreement to defer delivery of 18 new 737 MAX aircraft by 3 and 4 years. These are, of course, deferrments rather than cancellations – but will it amount to the same thing given Boeing’s weakened state and the parlous health of long-haul commercial air travel?

    Boeing has shed more than 50% of its stock value in 2020, even as regulators edge closer to clearing the 737 MAX to fly again. In the first 9 months of this year, Boeing lost a combined 381 orders for new planes, and the damage wreaked by coronavirus is expected to keep global airlines struggling for a decade.

    The administration continues to white-knuckle it as it maintains recovery is not feasible until there is a vaccine.


    1. Southwest flirts with Airbus in fleet renewal

      …Southwest executives have in recent years expressed interest in the idea of branching out beyond operating only 737s, a discussion that gained traction following the 737 Max grounding, which hit Southwest particularly hard…

      …Cowen’s Becker says the airline will “have to work harder to maintain their low-cost advantage” since new aircraft would add complexity. She adds that another possible contender to replace the -700s could be Embraer E-Jets E2s, though the airline has not disclosed discussions with the Brazilian airframer.

      Southwest says it plans to make a fleet decision within the next year, with potential deliveries of new jets from 2025. Airbus did not respond to multiple requests for comment….

      Long on speculation, but not inaccurate. Airbus’s A220 plant in Mobile Alabama is gearing up production and has already delivered its first A220.


  77. The COVID scare-the-shit-out-of-’em steeplechase plunges ahead, with this almost-completely-unsupported ‘analysis’ that severe COVID infections may be linked to cognitive brain damage equivalent to the brain aging ten years. You know, I don’t think I have ever seen such a concerted and malicious effort to make potential victims terrified of a disease. And who’s behind the research? The Imperial College in London – them what was famous for developing the ‘model’ that said COVID would kill over 2 million people in the USA, and a half-million in the UK. Which kind of begs the question who would believe the Imperial College if it said its studies suggested the sky would grow dark between 20:00 and 05:30 local time.

    As we are growing accustomed to seeing, the headline appears pitched at those news denizens who only read headlines. If you did not read the whole story, you would perhaps not ever know the ‘study’ was not peer-reviewed, did not verify the cognitive ability of participants pre-COVID, and accepted a substantial degree of self-reporting from people who claimed to have had COVID but could not demonstrate a positive test. “COVID made me stupid, Guv!”; is that about the size of it?

    Derek Hill, a professor of medical imaging science at University College London, described the results of the study as ‘intriguing, but inconclusive’, which must be newspeak for ‘thickly-compressed bullshit’. But it is what passes for ‘science’ these days. “Scientists’ and ‘researchers’ who appear to have gotten their degrees from the entirely-fabricated St-Regis University and a population so dumbed-down it can barely breathe without instruction create conditions ripe for the ‘pandemic of idiots’ that has stricken this dysfunctional world.


    1. A local doctor shared some insights regarding her view of Covid-19. Per the doctor, the virus is only sightly more deadly than the flu and masks are of little help. She was of the strong opinion that the pandemic is a political creation.

      I suspect that the medical establishment has polarized with those who believe that the end-is-near receiving various rewards (monetary, approval by their superiors, soap box access, martyr points, etc). Those who disagree have learned to keep quiet.


      1. The most recent ‘good news’ that I have read – and that only upon a challenge from my stepson because I said I had never seen such a negative pressure campaign by the press, in which all hope is stifled – was that it would likely only last another nine months.


      2. A local doctor shared some insights regarding her view of Covid-19. Per the doctor, the virus is only sightly more deadly than the flu and masks are of little help.

        Then she is an idiot. To date Canada has had 222,887 diagnosed cases and 10,000 deaths and we look to be just starting the second wave.

        For the 2019-2020 flu season, Canada had a tested incidence of 42,541 cases—presumably overall number is at least twice or three times greater if not more. The death rate for influenza in Canada is 500 to 1500 cases per year[1]

        1. I get the impression that these figures are as much a guestimate as a good estimate.

        There is good evidence that masks help though they certainly not perfect.

        She was of the strong opinion that the pandemic is a political creation.

        Ask her to explain how China, Taiwan, Mali, Peru Russia and Canada and the rest of the United Nations all managed to agree that a pandemic was a great political ploy and seem to able to coordinate their stories so well.


        1. There is pretty strong evidence – in the form of figures from the WHO and CDC – which suggests where it does not say outright that a large proportion of the deaths includes people over 85 with one or more co-morbidities. Once again, these are people who most likely would have died anyway. Mixing them in with the ‘COVID deaths’ pushes that number up artificially high.

          There is no ‘second wave’; as soon as countries relax their stringent lockdowns – which all with any sense agree are unsustainable, you can’t just keep all economic activity except gas stations and grocery stores in suspended animation for more than a year while you struggle to deny an infectious respiratory virus any victims – there are fresh outbreaks of the same virus, which was never eradicated, and kept simmering along at a case or two here, a case or two there. Lockdown will only work if it is maintained worldwide until there are no further cases of coronavirus which is verified to be COVID-19 and not something else which just looks like it in the not-very-specific tests currently available. The last case has to be recovered, worldwide, before the virus will be gone, and until that happens there will just be succeeding ‘waves’ of infections that are merely recurrences of the same outbreak as soon as fresh victims are available. It’s continuous and unrelenting lockdown until global recovery, or herd immunity.

          Where is the good evidence that masks help? Is this just the opinion of someone like Dr. Fauci, or was there an actual clinical trial in which two statistically-similar groups – masked and unmasked – were exposed to the same viral environment and no other controls (handwashing, gloves, etc…) were in place?

          This is a respiratory infection – so it affects everyone who breathes – that features very small particles, about 0.1 micron. An N-95 mask, the ones worn by medical workers, will filter 95% of particles 0.3 microns and larger, three times the size of a COVID-19 viral particle.

          A study conducted by the International Journal of Infection Control used 30 (admittedly, a small sample) operating-room workers and a blood-agar plate at a fixed distance from the mouth. Workers were asked to phonate “Aaahhh”. Tests were conducted with workers unmasked and wearing a 2-ply cloth/paper disposable mask, and bacterial levels were measured at 30, 60, 90, 120, and 150 minutes after putting on the mask. Bacterial levels – and bacterial particles are significantly larger than viral particles – reached pre-masking levels in 2 hours and 30 minutes. That’s presumably when the mask is worn so it is as tight-fitting as possible, and not with the nose exposed or with large gaps at the cheeks the way a lot of people wear them.

          They are a tremendous inconvenience in many ways, and I suppose a lot more people would be committed to wearing them, properly, if an actual clinical trial in controlled conditions and with measurable and convincing results confirmed that wearing them outweighed the inconvenience.


          1. There is pretty strong evidence – in the form of figures from the WHO and CDC – which suggests where it does not say outright that a large proportion of the deaths includes people over 85 with one or more co-morbiditie

            Of course there is. The Canadian figures support this. It still does not mean that Covid-19 did not do them in. Nor does it mean that SARS-CoV-2 is not killing or grievously injuring a fairly large number of younger people—who,by the way, may have co-morbidities.

            There is no ‘second wave’

            What do you think a “second wave” means?

            Ireland has not gone into a strict lock-down? The UK is not Faffing about with something that even Boris does not understand. France does not have curfews? In Ontario we do not have lock-downs in Toronto, Burlington and Peel?

            Where is the good evidence that masks help?

            Your mask study seems to suggest that we are using masks in a clinical setting properly. They need to be changed frequently, something I suspect most medical people did not realize.

            If you want to spend the time here is an interesting podcast on masks Not directly relevant to Covid-19 but interesting.

            Here is an interesting discussion on masks. (Warning written in *very* Québecois French and not very scientific.)

            A slightly more scientific lit review:

            On a more anecdotal level, China and other Asian countries seem to find them useful.

            I have seen some more “scientific” studies that indicate that masks should help reduce the spread of SARS-CoV-2 but never bothered to bookmark them. The general theme seems to have been nothing in general use rather than clinical use, is going to be great but all most anything will reduce the viral load to some extent.

            This is a respiratory infection – so it affects everyone who breathes – that features very small particles, about 0.1 micron.

            Actually I think the results are a bit better than that if some of the viral load is not in aerosol form. We have to remember that the major point of a mask is not to protect the wearer but to reduce the spread of the virus to others. Reducing the emissions, typically in large bits of moisture that later may end up as aeorsols reduces the spread of the disease. IIRC, the masks also help protect the wearer but to a much lesser extent.

            …was there an actual clinical trial in which two statistically-similar groups – masked and unmasked – were exposed to the same viral environment and no other controls

            Well one “could” do it but such an RCT would be unethical and you would never get it by a human research committee.

            there are fresh outbreaks of the same virus, which was never eradicated

            And the bets are that SARS-CoV-2 is one of these. Of course so was smallpox until it was eradicated —and it probably was easy to eradicate compared to SARS-CoV-2—or the seasonal flu. As with the flu the best we can hope for is a decently reliable vaccine to help control it. Unless it mutates itself out of existence we will not “eradicate” it.

            They are a tremendous inconvenience in many ways,
            Well I find they are a pain in the butt but not all that bad. Winter clothing is as bad or worse—I don’t live in Lotusland. 🙂

            The existing experimental and clinical knowledge of mask effectiveness pretty well insures that an RCT trial of masked vs unmasked is too unethical to happen. The podcast referenced above is a natural experiment that is about as close as we will get.


          2. I hear that <A HREF=""Danish researchers who conducted a large randomised, controlled trial – in which 3,000 Danes wore masks and 3,000 other Danes went about with no masks as the control group, and a large number of test participants were employed by Denmark’s largest retail company in its supermarkets – to discover whether wearing a mask in a public space during the COVID-19 pandemic are having difficulties in finding a medical or science journal that will publish the study and its results. Apparently the test results are “controversial”. Unfortunately the researchers cannot discuss the results or make them public until the study can be published.

            Rationale for and design of the Danish study on the effectiveness of mask-wearing during the COVID-19 pandemic

            The Lancet, the New England Journal of Medicine and the American Medical Association’s journal all refused to publish the study.

            Funny that the refusal arises because the test results are “controversial”, not because the researchers might have acted unethically in having 3,000 people expose themselves to COVID-19 infection in a setting where they face the public and touch things already touched by the public continuously every day, five or six days a week.

            Liked by 1 person

              1. Thanks, Jen; a lot of good substantiation in there, including the article by Dr. Brosseau at the University of Illinois, which I cited a few times and then could not find afterward because I couldn’t remember her name.

                The major Canadian dailies today carried near-identical stories mocking QANON, the conspiracy-theory organization, describing how families have been torn apart by one member who falls into the QANON vortex and begins talking about how Nicole Kidman is a satanist, and Hillary Clinton eats children, ha, ha, what a bunch of nutters. Say – did you know QANON ‘believers’ are also broadly opposed to wearing face masks? Neat trick, huh? In one twist of projection, those who object to being forced to wear a face covering are one and the same with those who believe in wild conspiracy theories. Divide and conquer, baby.

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            1. Funny that the refusal arises because the test results are “controversial”

              This is not unusual in a study. Without knowing what the “controversial” objections are my first bet would be that one or two reviewers panned the study.

              There could be very valid objections or a reviewer may be obtuse and not understand the study—both happen all the time.

              Assuming a human research ethics board approved of the study, one has to assume that it was ethical. Remember that early on, it was not clear that transmission was airborne. There was much more worry about fomites as the major method of transmission.

              Both the Lancet and the NEJM have been burned a couple of times recently one Covid-19 papers so they may be being very cautious. And the Lancet probably is still embarrassed by Andrew Wakefield’s infamous 1998 paper on vaccines and autism.

              There is nothing preventing the authors putting the paper up on a pre-pub site such as the medRxiv preprint server unless they have some weird contractual agreement with the funders. They can even stick the data up somewhere for downloading.

              Here is one such prepub Face Masks, Public Policies and Slowing the Spread of COVID-19: Evidence from Canada that I have just skimmed.

              Note these researchers supply their data:
              A detailed description is provided in the data files shared at the project’s Github repository.

              Given that it has economists as the authors, I would be wary. Other “epidemiology” papers authored by economists have been criticized for using simplistic models.


    2. The age group/s of the people involved in the study is/are not known so any so-called cognitive decline as measured by the results of the Great British Intelligence Test (whatever that is – who wants to bet that BoJo and his cabinet could pass it if they took the test?) could be due to age-related factors. Even general anaesthesia given to people in older age groups can affect short-term memory and in some individuals has been linked to early onset of dementia.