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Mendocino County Today: Tuesday, Oct. 25, 2022

Changeable | Pomo Rally | P Vague | Magic Market | Ducey Appearance | Albion Station | CRV Survey | River Cleanup | No Response | Poverty Gulch | Honor Roll | Elderhome Benefit | Ed Notes | No 26/27 | Planning Agenda | Brewer Concert | Harvest Festival | Yesterday's Catch | Humboldt Dems | Lemos Family | Contaminated Eel | Rockport Coupon | Partial Paving | EF Sale | Ian Damage | Rime | Devilspotting | Coming Elections | Teen Pregnancy | Annie Taylor | Schalk Mitt | Pluto-Patriots | Miners Shift | This Week | Camp Life | Chaos Party | SS Detroit | Ukraine | Gifted | War Sponsors | Foreign Aid | Propaganda War | Witchmobile

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CONSIDERABLE CLOUD COVER and patches of fog are expected for today, but skies should clear out some later in the day. A trough will drop down from the northwest tonight and bring some light rain to Del Norte and northern Humboldt counties. Frost and freezing temperatures are expected for some of the interior valleys each morning Wednesday through Friday. Otherwise, dry weather with near average temperatures for latter October are forecast through Thursday. A front will approach and then stall offshore on Friday. Rain forecast for this weekend is highly uncertain. (NWS)

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To the editor: 

The writer of the long letter passionately urging a Yes vote on Measure P, to provide much needed funds for our county’s volunteer fire departments, apparently did not read the proposition. Because that is not what the measure actually says.

Measure P is a .25% sales tax that, to quote the exact legal wording of the measure, “will be placed in the general fund to support general County services and functions, including but not limited to fire protection services.” 


No further details, no promises or estimates of how much, if any, of the money will go to our volunteer fire departments.

For the ten years this tax will be collected, the supervisors can spend the money however they want, as long as some of the money — a million dollars? a thousand dollars? ten dollars? — goes to “fire protection services,” a term that, like everything else in the measure, is not specified.

We voters, and sadly our great fire departments, are all being misled.

L.C. Lewis


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October 27th Ft. Bragg City Mgr. Peggy Ducey guest speaker

Soroptimist International of Noyo Sunrise hosts guest speaker, Fort Bragg City Manager Peggy Ducey in person and on Zoom on Thursday October 27th from 12 noon to 1 p.m.

Redwood Coast Senior Center Activities Meeting Room, 490 N Harold St., Fort Bragg

For zoom link email: 

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Our recent public meetings discussing our proposal to the community for a new fire station in Albion Village is now available on YouTUBE.

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CRV buyback facility on Albion Ridge? Please take this 2-question survey Announcement from Bruce McCracken, Vice President at C&S Waste Solutions, our new waste hauler on the coast: 

The Mendocino County Coastal community is in need of a CRV Buy Back Facility. To meet this need, we are excited to announce that Albion Transfer Station has been identified as a potential location that would bring a CRV Buy Back to the coast in a timely manner. Prior to moving forward with this project, we would like to gauge community support. We have assembled a short 2-question survey that can be reached at the following URL:

We would appreciate if you would provide your feedback on this project, as your opinion is important to us. 

I could not answer the first of two questions in this SurveyMonkey survey, and so I put this as my explanation and answer to the second question: 

“I can't say if I support a CRV Buy-Back facility placed at the Albion Transfer Station because that would depend on how many large waste-huling trucks would be driving up and down Albion Ridge Road each week, and how new many resident trips to drop off CRV recyclables this would entail. Please tell us all what the estimated number of increased trips per week would be? 

I do strongly favor a coastal CRV Buy-Back facility because the A-LR Fire Dept collected recyclables for several years and made our fire dept over $10,000 from this ALRFPD volunteer run CRV Buy-Back program. But it had to stop because there is no longer a collection center on the coast. The Albion transfer station might not be best because of serious downsides like its distance from the bulk of the coasts' population and its narrow road. But I think that whatever the location, it should be convenient for Albion and Little River residents. That fire department could really use the money, and its fire protection district perhaps has the greatest number of people living in forested areas on the coast. (Thanks to Rene Roberts for some of this working.) 

Please fill out the survey at: and let them know that we need to know what the impact this facility would have on Albion’s roads and residents.


Tom Wodetzki, Albion 

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Former Supervisor John McCowan and five South Ukiah Rotarians cleaning along the river at Perkins Street and the Talmage road gravel bar. Three loads to the dump and things are a little bit better.

The picture of Lisa Bates, Stacy Starkey, and Kaylee Simili emphasizes that we are NOT your grandfather’s Rotary Club.

If you’re interested in being part of a dynamic group of do gooders, contact our amazing Membership Chairperson Lisa Davey-Bates!

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District Attorney David Eyster

Assistant DA Dale Trigg

Chief Investigator Andy Alvarado

Blocking comments on DA Social Media site

The District Attorney's public information posts must be available to all, whether it be on the official county website or on Facebook, the site of choice. Your call. But you cannot block access to the site at your discretion.

Please read the attached information, and act accordingly. This is the second letter that has been sent regarding this issue, with no response from your office.

It seems unwise to continue to flaunt public access guidelines and risk potential costly challenges to taxpayers of defending a District Attorney practice that is clearly outside the limits.

“If a public official uses their account to carry out their role as an elected official, then their page or account is subject to the First Amendment. That means they cannot engage in most forms of censorship such as blocking someone or deleting someone’s comments just because of their subject or opinion. It is also generally unacceptable for the official to ask the platform to delete comments for them.”

Mike Geniella, Media Consultant


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Poverty Gulch Cookhouse, Comptche, 1910

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Dear Anderson Valley Community,

Thank you for your patience, as we updated the honor roll information. Our query for the database was being problematic. I am delighted to say that 113 students have qualified for the Brown (3.0-3.49) and Gold (3.50-4.0+) Honor Roll. Everyone is invited to attend the mandatory basketball meeting at 5 p.m. for basketball athletes, followed by the honor roll ceremony at 5:30 in the gym this Tuesday (Today, October 25). This first Honor Roll is based on a straight GPA. We may refine this in the coming time periods and disqualify anyone that has a D in any class or any type of a behavioral incident. However for this first honor roll, we will recognize the GPA achievement. Students will receive a certificate and a $10 ice cream certificate. I appreciate and applaud their commitment to their studies and thank the families for their support.

Congratulations to:

One more: Willow Douglass-Thomas has an Outstanding GPA Gold Honor Roll. (Sorry about that omission, Miss Willow!)

— Louise Simson, Superintendent, Anderson Valley Unified School District, Cell: 707-684-1017

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BOB ABELES: “And a big shout out to the fine wine makers of Anderson Valley for their cacophonous fan symphony this morning.”

TWO MORNINGS in a row, and by “morning” we're talking 1am until sunrise, hundreds of us have suffered sleep deprivation because, as Philo wine mogul memorably informed us, “My (Our) grapes are more important than your sleep.” 

THE ACOUSTICS of our formerly rustic valley are curious. There are homes on Lambert Lane whose residents say they only hear the frost fans if they go outside. Others, only yards away, compare the din to a combat Huey landing on their roofs. Here at AVA headquarters, the din is loud enough to disturb our sleep, and we're about a mile and a half distant from the machines. 

THE FROST FANS are a huge imposition on the people of the Anderson Valley, many of whom still don't know that they negatively impact property values. If you sell, you'll have to disclose to your buyer that for a month or two every year the buyer will have to remain awake from midnight to dawn. No, ear plugs do not blot out the giant chopper clamor. Hundreds of people cannot sleep through it.

GIVEN the number of home arsenals in the Anderson Valley, I'm surprised (and hopeful) that a local marksman hasn't planted a couple of rounds in these can't miss nuisances. I'd do it myself but all I have is a shotgun, and even with that I'd probably miss. 

VALLEY ACOUSTICS. Years ago, circa the early 1970's, when the Moonies operated a brainwashing center on the property now called Sheep Dung Estates, we could hear the would be zomboids chanting, and we were five miles south of them. The Moonies were then rightly regarded as a cult, but these days and millions of dollars later with a daily Washington newspaper, they're at least as respectable as, say, Trump, whom they of course support.

MY ADMIRATION for Nixon grew some when I read that he and Chuck Colson discussed fire-bombing the Brookings Institute.

DITTO FOR TRUMP: ”We must demand the immediate negotiation of a peaceful end to the war in Ukraine, or we will end up in world war three,” the former president said. “And there will be nothing left of our planet — all because stupid people didn't have a clue … They don't understand what they’re dealing with, the power of nuclear.”

CHRIS HEDGES characterized Trump's assessment as, “You know we’re in trouble when Donald Trump is the voice of reason.” The Biden administration, whoever or whatever wherever it is, has no strategy, but plenty of leverage to compel negotiations, but what we're getting is a steady march to doom. 

A READER ASKS, “Did you know that in the state of Arkansas aperitif is a synonym for a set of dentures?”

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The Staff Report(s) and Agenda for November 3, 2022, is posted on the department website at:

Please contact staff with any questions.


Brooke Larsen, Commission Services Supervisor, Mendocino County Planning and Building

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On Saturday, November 12th at 7:00pm, a special event will take place at the SPACE Theatre in Ukiah. Spencer Brewer will be celebrating his new record ‘Behind the Veil’, with a rare album release concert. Special guests include Jeremy Cohen, Paul Yarborough, Margie Rice and Joel Cohen.

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MENDO HARVEST FEST: November 4 - 13, 2022

Join the festivities during Harvest Mendocino as we invite you to enjoy a collection of events sure to entice you! Sample our chefs’ treats, and swish & swirl our liquid assets! Come experience a taste of everything from mushrooms to wines to homegrown green harvested here in Mendocino County. Relax, rejuvenate and rediscover all that Mendocino County has to offer! Stay a night or two… or more in some of the most unique and charming properties in Northern California! Come and savor the bounty…of Mendocino County!

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CATCH OF THE DAY, Monday, October 24, 2022

Degurse, Henderson, Vancau, Walters

NATHAN DEGURSE, Willits. Controlled substance, paraphernalia, resisting. 

JONATHAN HENDERSON, Ukiah. Vandalism, probation revocation.


DAVID WALTERS, Santa Rosa/Ukiah. DUI.

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HUMBOLDT PROGRESSIVE DEMOCRATS Oppose Privatization Of Medicare And Weigh In On Ballot Measures

In the face of renewed corporate attempts to privatize Medicare through private insurance scams termed “Medicare Advantage, and more recently the “ACO REACH” program, the Humboldt Progressive Democrats club joined local health care activists in vowing to oppose the corporate takeover of Medicare. At its October meeting, club members unanimously endorsed a resolution entitled “The Privatization of Medicare Must be Stopped” and called on Xavier Becerra, Secretary of Health and Human Services and President Biden terminate the ACO-REACH program. This resolution follows an explosive New York Times article “‘The Cash Monster Was Insatiable’: How Insurers Exploited Medicare for Billions” exposing rampant fraud in the existing so-called “Medicare Advantage” program (which is neither Medicare nor an advantage). Local activists are also issuing a call to attend remaining local presentations by United Heath promoting Medicare Advantage and ask the hard questions about its coverage and who pays:

  • October 27: 9:00 a.m., Holiday Inn, 3107 Concorde Dr., McKinleyville
  • October 27: 10:00 a.m., Think N' Tank Ctr, 512 I St., Eureka
  • October 28: 9:00 a.m., Peppers, 719 S Fortuna Blvd., Fortuna 
  • November 4: 9:00 a.m., Humboldt Sr. Resource, 1910 Calif. St., Eureka
  • November 11: 9:00 a.m., Holiday Inn, 3107 Concorde Dr., McKinleyville
  • November 14: 10:00 a.m., Think N’ Tank Ctr, 512 I St., Eureka

Club members also debated local and state ballot measures and recommend:

  • Measure M (Arcata) – Yes
  • Proposition 1 – Yes
  • Proposition 26 – Yes
  • Proposition 27 – No
  • Proposition 28 – Yes
  • Proposition 29 – Yes
  • Proposition 30 – Yes
  • Proposition 31 – Yes 

Endorsed local candidates are:

  • Arcata City Council – Kimberley White & Meredith Matthews
  • Eureka Mayor – Kim Bergel
  • Eureka City Council – G. Mario Fernandez
  • Clerk-Recorder, Registrar of Voters – Juan Pablo Cervantes

The General Election is November 8th and HPD encourages ALL eligible voters to make their voices heard. All California active registered voters will receive a vote-by-mail ballot. The last day to register to vote for the November 8, 2022, General Election is October 24, 2022. HOWEVER – those who are not registered can still show up to a polling place and vote with a provisional ballot. Please contact the Humboldt County Office of Elections if you have any questions. For democracy to work, you have to show up!

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Lemos Family Gathering, 1950

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The bad news - 83% of waters tested across the state were found to be contaminated by PFAS. We join the Waterkeeper Alliance in urging Congress to celebrate the 50th anniversary of the Clean Water Act by passing the Clean Water Standards for PFAS Act of 2022.

Conservation Groups Joint Statement on PG&E Herbicide Spraying

On September 29, 2022, PG&E alerted Humboldt County that it was going to spray herbicides along its easements across the region. PG&E failed to alert landowners or tenants of this new threat; instead, local news broke the story just two days before spraying was set to commence. Today, it appears that PG&E has postponed spraying and is requiring individuals to opt-in to the program. Many important details are still missing or are evidently still in flux.

We, like you, are alarmed by PG&E’s proposed herbicide spraying. The toxicants employed have a clearly established relationship with increased risk of disease, including cancer, and some have been banned in other countries as a result. Herbicide application is slated to start concurrent with the defined “wet period” in Humboldt County, risking runoff into adjacent streams. Humboldt County’s organic and cannabis farms are particularly at risk from spray drift, as even trace amounts of herbicides can ruin an entire year’s crop. Spray along roadsides places road users, particularly walkers and bikers, at risk and may contaminate wild-harvested foods, like berries, which can be picked from roadsides throughout the county. For these reasons and more, herbicide application has long been controversial in Humboldt County, with jurisdictions including Humboldt County and Arcata have adopted policies against herbicide application on their property.

Our organizations oppose herbicide application without the express permission of landowners, their tenants and adjacent landowners where there is risk of spray drift, and without measures to protect users of public streets and roads. We are at work to correct this situation and to reform larger processes to prevent similar incidents in the future. State law limits local jurisdictions ability to regulate herbicide application, however, we call on the Board of Supervisors to adopt a formal policy outlining its position regarding herbicide application. Email your Supervisor to register your concerns.

If you are concerned about herbicide application on your property, please contact PG&E at 1-800-564-5080 and email at PG&E has failed to provide readily usable maps where they will spray. A Google Earth file is available hereRedheaded Blackbelt and Soucy Biologique have provided maps for the community.

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While riding with my wife along Asti Road between Geyserville and Cloverdale, we encountered a paving crew laying beautiful smooth new asphalt. Wonderful, we thought, until we saw they were only paving up to the white line (fog line) and not an inch further over. The area outside the white line is where many cyclists ride to keep out of the roadway and away from cars. This area used to be paved. Failing to repave leaves old cracked and broken pavement that forces cyclists into traffic with cars.

A local city manager told me he had noticed this and couldn’t explain it. Probably a cost-saving decision not well thought out. While the county will promote cycling, this is another recent example of needlessly putting cyclists at risk.

Steven Hebenstreit

Santa Rosa

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Photo credit: AVA News Service

DISCOUNTED EARTH FIRST T-SHIRTS (minus the ! that might create a copyright infringement) are currently available at the Smith's Superstore in Los Alamos, New Mexico, located on Trinity Drive.

Perhaps the discount was triggered by the death of EF! Co-Founder Dave Foreman, who was born not so far away in Albuquerque, NM in 1946. Wonder whether Dave would have set off an armed response had he wandered through the always staffed highway checkpoint near the Los Alamos National Lab.

Have decided to think of it as a good thing that the sentiment Earth First is now so non-controversial that this t-shirt can be sold across the arroyo from LANL, the home of the US atomic bomb. 

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My question to Jill: Things getting back to some sense of normal yet?

Jill’s answer: At our house we are just waiting on two repairs...soffit replacement, garage ceiling drywall plus removal of wet moldy insulation in the attic and replacement of new insulation. We are really fortunate, Steve. We have much less to worry about than other people. My next door neighbor has $50,000 of damage for example. The damage outside of our residential neighborhood is on another level. Its really bad.

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Gustave Doré illustration for The Rime of the Ancient Mariner (1877)

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DON'T YOU KNOW the devil wears a suit and tie.

— Colter Wall

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I’m doubtful I will survive the coming shitstorm. Our generation is washing away by the tides of history. I’ve always embraced change, but I’ve never felt so alienated from our society. Now I know what it’s like to be locked up in an insane asylum. 

We are in a well-directed horror movie. The kind where the tension slowly builds, the music is ominous, and you know that any moment something terrible is about to be sprung on us on-screen. That’s how I feel about the coming elections. We’re pausing at the high point of the roller coaster, waiting for the plunge down the steep slope. In a thousand years, what will they say about our generation as they roast squirrels over the campfire?

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Today in History -- On today’s date 121 years ago, Thursday, October 24, 1901, on her 63rd birthday, noted American adventuress Annie Edson Taylor (1838-1921), “The Queen of the Mist,” became the first person to survive a trip over Niagara Falls in a barrel.

Annie Edson was born on October 24, 1838 at Auburn, New York. Whilst studying to became a schoolteacher, she met & married David Taylor. The couple had one son who died in infancy, & Mr. Taylor died not long after -- leaving Annie a widow. Annie then worked at various jobs in different places -- eventually ending up in Bay City, Michigan where she hoped to become a dance instructor. Since there were no dance schools in Bay City at that time, she opened her own. In 1900, she moved to Sault Ste. Marie to teach music. From Sault Ste. Marie she traveled to San Antonio, Texas, & from there she & a friend went to México City to find work. Unsuccessful, she returned to Bay City. 

Desiring to secure her later years financially & to avoid ending up in the poor house, she decided to become the first person to ride over Niagara Falls in a barrel using a custom-made barrel constructed of oak & iron & padded with a mattress. Several delays occurred in the launching of the barrel, particularly because no one wanted to be part of a potential suicide. Two days before her own attempt, she conducted a trial run -- placing her cat in the barrel & sending it over Horseshoe Falls. Seventeen minutes later, the kitty was found dazed & confused with a bleeding head, after which Taylor & her cat posed for a photograph.

Annie Taylor with her barrel & her feline “test pilot.”

On October 24, 1901, her 63rd birthday, the barrel was put over the side of a rowboat, & Taylor climbed in, along with her lucky heart-shaped pillow. After screwing down the lid, friends used a bicycle tire pump to compress the air in the barrel. The hole used for this was plugged with a cork, & Taylor was set adrift near the American shore, south of Goat Island.

The Niagara River current carried Taylor’s barrel over the Canadian Horseshoe Falls, which has since been the site for all dare-devil stunts at Niagara Falls. Rescuers reached her barrel shortly after the plunge. Taylor was discovered to be alive & relatively uninjured -- except for a small gash on her head. The trip took less than twenty minutes, but it was some time before the barrel was actually opened. Upon emerging from her barrel, Annie declared: “No one ought ever do that again!”

Shortly after her trip over the waterfall, Annie Taylor told the reporters: “If it was with my dying breath, I would caution anyone against attempting the feat... I would sooner walk up to the mouth of a cannon, knowing it was going to blow me to pieces than make another trip over the Fall.” 

Taylor briefly earned money speaking about her experience, but she was never able to build much wealth. Her manager, Frank M. Russell, ran away with her barrel, & most of her savings were used towards private detectives hired to find it. It was eventually located in Chicago, only to permanently disappear sometime later. She spent her final years posing for photographs with tourists at her souvenir stand, attempting to earn money from the New York Stock Exchange, briefly talking about taking a second plunge over the cataracts in 1906, attempting to write a novel, re-constructing her 1901 plunge on film (which was never seen), working as a clairvoyant, & providing magnetic therapy treatments to local residents.

Annie Taylor died from the effects of “morphea” (a disease of the skin) at the age of 82 on April 29, 1921, at the Niagara County Infirmary in Lockport, New York. She is interred in the so-called “Stunters Section” of historic Oakwood Cemetery in Niagara Falls, New York.

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by Patrick Cockburn

It is chillingly appropriate that this Halloween takes place as populist nationalist demagogues, once deemed politically dead and buried, are rising from their graves everywhere.

The dark forces responsible for their resurrection differ from country to country, but there is no denying the mass resurrection of some of the most toxic politicians on the planet.

In the US, Donald Trump was never actually in his political grave, despite losing the presidential election and his role in the 6 January Capitol riot. But four out of 10 Americans still approve of him, according to the polls, and he retains his grip on the Republican Party. In Brazil, Jair Bolsonaro has pulled level with his opponent Lula da Silva as he seeks re-election as Brazilian president. In Italy, Silvio Berlusconi is wrangling over his future position in a government led by a quasi-fascist.

The end of the Liz Truss premiership

Until Thursday, it seemed that Britain was one of the few countries in the world which could pride itself on having democratically ended the career of Boris Johnson, its own representative in the populist nationalist pantheon. Instead, the extraordinary end of the Liz Truss premiership has given Johnson a good chance of being back in 10 Downing Street come 31 October.

The return of Johnson, if it happens, would be more astonishing than the survival of Trump, Bolsonaro and Berlusconi as political players. Tory MPs forced him out as prime minister because of serial scandals and the calamitous loss of two by-elections that threatened a massacre of the Tory MPs in the next general election.

Who could have predicted that Truss would prove herself even more of a political Jonah, whose continuance in office threatened the very existence of the Tory party? Yet one should not be too surprised since Johnson’s career has always had a comic opera Gilbert and Sullivan feel to it as characters declared dead in one act – I am thinking of the Mikado – emerge alive and kicking later in the play.

Incompetence and corruption

The absurdities of Johnson, Trump, Bolsonaro and Berlusconi are a diversion from trying to analyse how this gruesome quartet ever gained power in the first place and have been able to make comebacks despite appalling records of incompetence and corruption. The phrase “populist nationalist” is a little misleading and a better one might be “pluto-populist”. Trump supporters at the Republican convention in 2016 described him ludicrously as “a blue-collar billionaire”.

In reality, the tax breaks and contracts for the plutocrats turn out to be real and the levelling up agendas, be they in West Virginia, North Yorkshire or Southern Italy, evaporate after election day.

Another useful phrase for this type of right wing leader is “Gonzo politician”, because it gives central importance to their relationship with the media. I quoted before a study in Foreign Policy magazine, titled “We’re All Living in Berlusconi’s World Now“. In it, Tobias Jones argues that this process started in Italy 30 years ago, saying that “objectivity, and fidelity to the facts, seemed to dissolve in the 1990s. Gonzo journalism – subjective, deliberately dissolute and excitedly coarse – had given way to gonzo politics.”

A cheeky chap who appeals to the working class

Johnson is quintessentially a Gonzo politician of this kind, ostensibly a cheeky chap who appeals to the working class and creates a coalition between the “Red Wall” and the Tory shires. Except that this is something of a myth since analysis shows that the Tory success in winning in Labour seats in 2019 was largely to do with Brexit and had very little to do with Johnson’s popularity.

Yet, it’s easy to see why Tory MPs, donors and activists might imagine that Johnson is their one hope of avoiding electoral slaughter come the next general election.

Many Remainers will see the present crisis as Brexit chickens finally coming home to roost. And they are largely right. The political and economic centre of gravity has been rising in Britain ever since the Brexit vote. But it was Liz Truss’s Great Leap Forward which finally capsized a structure that was already unstable. The sheer silliness of Truss’s belief that she could cut taxes, primarily for the rich, borrow the money to do so, and expect automatic growth to follow is still breathtaking.

But, as so often in history, it is the truly stupid moves, be it Saddam Hussein invading Kuwait in 1990 or Vladimir Putin doing the same in Ukraine in 2022, that are difficult to predict.

A trade war waged against ourselves

The Brexit vote was Britain’s “Ukraine moment”. By putting up trade barriers between itself and its largest market, Britain became, as has been pointed out, one of the first countries to declare a trade war against itself. The economic self-harm was obvious, but Remainers tended to underestimate the pursuit of self-determination as a legitimate political force that could not be rebuffed by proving that the grievances and goals of the Leavers were exaggerated or illusory.

In many ways, the Brexiters have proved more damaging than Brexit as they seek to use it as a vehicle for their own agendas such as that of Liz Truss and Kwasi Kwarteng. But there are plenty of other weird people who have risen to the top of the Tory party in recent years willing to pretend that they have the formula to put things right. The Gonzo generation is still on the march in Britain, as it is in other countries.

A further piece of damage done by Brexit is that it is a diversion from governmental failings that have nothing to do with it. One is the growth in corruption with senior politicians and civil servants using their positions to make millions. A low point of this was the billions made by those who were politically well connected during the Covid-19 pandemic. People say that there have been financial scandals in the past, but miss the point that once these were about tens of thousands of pounds while now they are about tens of millions. Ministers in Westminster are no longer surprised to be introduced to a Libyan warlord or an Uzbek oligarch.

Anguished regrets

The Tory candidates to be prime minister are all likely to claim that they are the unity candidate. Many pundits express anguished regrets that British politics are becoming as divisive as Italy with an equally swift changeover of prime ministers and ministers. But a more ominous parallel with Italy is that Johnson/Berlusconi type governments tend to do nothing at all because they have made too many contradictory promises to too many people.

Not all the news is bad. Countries that change their leaders too often are a lot better than countries like Russia or China that cannot change them at all. Nevertheless, ceaseless political turmoil in Britain – as in the US, Italy and Brazil – ultimately opens the door to autocratic solutions.

In Memoriam

I was writing this newsletter last week when I glanced at my phone and saw an item that said Robbie Coltrane had just died. Once I knew him well because we were exactly the same age and arrived at the same moment at Trinity College Glenalmond, a public school outside Perth in Scotland. We sat at desks a few feet away from each other in the junior common room of Patchell’s House and always got on well together.

Robbie, whose non-stage name was Robbie McMillian, later said that he was unhappy at school and perhaps this was the case. But I cannot say that I noticed that Robbie was particularly miserable because, on the contrary, he was always ebullient and full of enthusiasms – when I first met him his passion was for big lorries whose virtues he would describe to me in great detail.

His father, to whom Rob was close, used to take us out for lunch in Perth and talk about his experiences as a police doctor in Glasgow. I remember him talking about going to the site of a stabbing where the victim, who had been knifed in the stomach, was lying on the ground. His burly assailant, who had been arrested. was standing nearby and Dr McMillan asked him why he had done it. “He called me fatty,” said the man, as if this was an adequate explanation for what he had done.

Both father and son relished stories like this, emphasising the grittiness of Glasgow compared to the less proletarian Edinburgh, whose supposedly more refined accent Robbie would often imitate with expressions of contempt.

Cockburn’s Picks

The bid by the Conservative and Labour parties, BBC and much of the media, the civil service, and almost everybody else to pretend that Brexit has not been a gross mistake is breaking down. The best summary of the nature of this slow-burning disaster that I have seen is in this simple but authoritative account.

(Patrick Cockburn is the author of War in the Age of Trump (Verso). Courtesy,

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Miners Shift by William Geldart

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with Walter Kirn & Matt Taibbi

Before tuning in to watch some NFL teams go from buyers to sellers this Sunday afternoon, check out a few excerpts from the new episode of America This Week with Walter Kirn and Matt Taibbi. To hear the full audio, click here

A focus of the show was the Bloomberg report that sent Twitter stock tumbling before the opening of trading Monday, that the U.S. might be “weighing” options for stopping the sale of Twitter to Elon Musk on national security grounds.


On the possible nixing of the Twitter sale:

Walter Kirn: It sounds like Elon Musk, for the crime of pursuing Twitter financially has been perhaps called in, or will be, for some kind of national defense review of his activities, the basis for this being (I guess) his tweets about Russia, or his tweets about a possible, compromise with Putin over the Ukraine war. It seems that Elon Musk’s pursuit of Twitter has been continually rebuffed and usually using the same message, that the American security state can’t afford for Twitter to fall into the hands of a heterodox thinker, even a free-thinking capitalist. This latest thing sounds like a candid admission, that Twitter is in fact an arm of the security state in some way, that it’s vital to our mission in shaping opinion, maybe domestically, maybe internationally, and controlling the narrative around events like the Ukraine War. I don’t know that they’ve ever come out and shown that as positively as they have with this notion that he’s going to be called down to the principal’s office.

Matt Taibbi: It’s funny because for the first six or seven years, we’ve had a lot of these like controversies about speech, where somebody’s taken off the internet, maybe Alex Jones gets sent to purgatory, or whatever it is. This is a completely different level. This would be the mother of all First Amendment stories. To deem the private purchase of a media distribution platform subject to the national security bureaucracy, which could exercise veto power over that — I can’t think of anything in our history that would even rival that.

Walter Kirn: One thing this proves is that there is no such thing as “fuck you money” in America anymore. The richest man in America, the one whose riches have to a large degree come from contracts with the government or subsidies for his electric cars, somebody who has worked hand in glove with the establishment to pursue many of its stated goals, like green energy — that he should be a suspect person is pretty astonishing. It means there is no level at which you free yourself from the scrutiny of the state. I guess that for some is a blow for equity, but it also suggests a very insecure and intrusive state.

Matt Taibbi: I thought the whole idea of Elon Musk is that he had beyond fuck you money.

Walter Kirn: He’s Iron Man. Iron Man is suppressive person. In an Iron Man script, the point at which Iron Man becomes a suspect in the eyes of the state apparatus would be a great plot point. He’d have to prove his patriotism at some point.

Matt Taibbi: I think that’s in Iron Man 3. The suit controls him, or Don Cheadle replaces him or something…

Walter Kirn: Anyway, about there being no such thing as fuck you money. About a week ago, Musk made some noises about pulling Starlink from the battlefield in Ukraine because Zelensky had told him to fuck off, and for other reasons, because he wasn’t getting paid, which seems astonishing to me. For the money we’re laying down on the Ukraine war, we can’t spend 80 million? They should allow him to make a slight profit, defending the free world from Putin and all.

Matt Taibbi: That’s not even between-the-couch-pillows money for the Pentagon.

Walter Kirn: Elon Musk as a dramatic figure in American life has gone through so many metamorphoses. He was Iron Man, the person who is maybe going to spearhead our future development in all kinds of ways, bringing smarts and engineering props and social vision to the remaking of America. Now he’s being treated as some sort of, kind of the way that Chinese treated Jack Ma, who was their richest man who also fell afoul of the state. I start to see in discussions of them on Twitter that he’s South African, a sort of suspect nationality. It’s kind of without specificity, these warnings. He’s growing into Dr. Evil for, for a certain contingent.

Matt Taibbi: (mimicking Mike Myers voice) Forty-four billion dollars!

Walter Kirn: Shutting up Alex Jones or suing Kanye West or other celebrities really doesn’t hold a candle to taking Iron Man, and putting him in a girdle.

Matt Taibbi: This leaked out to the public via a Bloomberg story before the opening of the trading day, and the stock price fell 16%. The Bloomberg story’s amazing. It’s anonymously sourced. It could theoretically come from Musk side, but it doesn’t feel like it. There are two amazing paragraphs in here, which feel like they’re worth reading verbatim: The discussions are still at an early stage, the people familiar said on condition of anonymity. Officials in the US government and intelligence community are weighing what tools, if any, are available that would allow the federal government to review Musk’s ventures. One possibility is through the law governing the Committee on Foreign Investment in the United States to review Musk’s deals and operations for national security risks, they said.

Matt Taibbi: This Committee on Foreign Investment in the United States is a real thing. I’ve seen it come up a few times in the past — let’s just say the ch something that’s owned by the Chinese government wants to buy into a chip maker or an aerospace company. In one case, they nixed a deal involving the purchase of a wind farm that was too near a Naval air station. The point is, it’s never happened that the government has gone to this committee and said, “We want you to look at this.” It’s something that I’m pretty sure is supposed to be invoked automatically. This would be extraordinary, if they did things backwards and said, “Hey, what bureaucratic infrastructure do we have that we can use to nix a deal?”

Walter Kirn: Two points. Number one, yours, which is that this is a committee that traditionally at least, seems to make its own recommendations that the higher reaches hear about, and act on. But this is in reverse. This is the higher echelons looking around and saying, you know, what can we use against him? Second, what’s foreign about his investment in Twitter? I don’t quite understand. Is he not a domestic actor? We’re not talking about China or Russia buying Twitter, are we? Isn’t Elon Musk one of us?

Matt Taibbi: He’s a U.S. citizen. Doesn’t that entitle him to be an asshole?

Walter Kirn: He also has security clearance. He couldn’t work on the projects that he does for us without that. Are they going to take away his satellites? What are they planning to do? In fact, when they talk about looking at the breadth of his business operations, as I understand it: he makes cars, He runs Starling. He is trying to churn out solar panels. Is severing his management of these projects a national security win? Um, or is this just purely punitive?

On a New Republic hit piece on David Sacks:

Matt Taibbi: There have been a bunch of these stories lately that are about rich people who are trying to enter the media world, but doing it in a way that is not approved. Like, there, there was, there was a crazy story that came out in The New Republic, which I seem to remember once was a readable magazine.

Walter Kirn: I used to be the national correspondent for The New Republic. That meant I dealt with everything that didn’t happen within the Beltway. I was allowed to stick up for farmers every once in a while…

Matt Taibbi: The story, the story is, it’s called “The Quiet Political Rise of David Sachs, Silicon Valley’s Prophet of Urban Doom.”

Walter Kirn: Prophet of Doom!

Matt Taibbi: It’s also out of a Marvel movie.

Walter Kirn: In what way does he want to doom the urban landscape?

Matt Taibbi: The sub-headline is great: Like his pals Elon Musk and Peter Thiel, Sacks is using his wealth and online clout to unite conservatives and former leftists in a reactionary movement against liberalism.

Matt Taibbi: Even I was mentioned in this piece as a reactionary. Even funnier though, they led with Katie Halper talking about how she interviewed the former district attorney of San Francisco, Chesa Boudin. They’re upset that Katie had a confrontational interview with Boudin on Sacks-owned Callin, and implying that because Sacks doesn’t like Boudin, this is another evil capitalist buying the left to do hit pieces. Except, Katie had already done multiple stories on Boudin, and there’s no editorial direction at Callin, it’s just an app. It’s looney-tunes conspiracy theory. They’re basically saying that David Sachs and Peter Thiel and Elon Musk and all these people are trying to bring about the so-called horseshoe theory uniting would-be leftists with reactionaries to stop the forces of light and good from triumphing everywhere. But no one seems to mind when billionaires own mainstream media organizations. Really, since when have billionaires done anything but try to influence the media?

Walter Kirn: It’s all in Citizen Kane, which is based on the story of William Randolph Hearst, of course. Media ownership is what allows you to start wars. It also allows you to marry bimbos, for whom you then build opera houses in an attempt to promote beyond their talents, all while missing that sled from childhood that made them feel healed, and happy.

Matt Taibbi: It doesn’t fill the hole!

Walter Kirn: They need to fill the hole, with influence and political potency. That is what billionaires do in the American mythos. What else would they be good for? You know,

Matt Taibbi: Again, we encourage that when they’re funding crappy neoliberal media ventures that basically say the same things that all of our politicians say. They even like upstart publications if they say the right things. Remember Ariana Huffington? When she came up it was, “Wow, look at this amazing new thing, a wealthy person is creating a vehicle through which all this political energy can pour out into the media landscape. Isn’t that amazing?” I seem to remember that being celebrated. But suddenly now that a handful of them are dabbling in ventures like Callin or Substack or whatever, we can’t have that. Time to get CFUIS on the horn!

Walter Kirn: They seem to be, Okay. So, so be off of Salesforce, I believe owns Time Magazine, if that’s correct. Um, another magazine I used to work for that’s changed hands several times. Um, and there doesn’t seem to be much of a problem when these billionaires buy legacy, uh, legacy publications,

Walter Kirn: When they buy the right places for the right reasons, they’re patrons. When they do something else, they’re suspect persons.

On the reign of Liz Truss, and the British in general:

Matt Taibbi: How funny was the short-lived reign Liz Truss, who was hailed by everybody in the United States as the great conservative alternative to populism? The American Enterprise Institute ran a great piece called “Growth Beats Grievance” or something, and Truss was gone about a ten minutes later.

Walter Kirn: She was the Third Way.

Matt Taibbi: There are sneezes that long that that probably lasted longer than her tenure. It was pretty amazing.

Walter Kirn: I lived in England, London, and Oxford for a few years. It was at a time in the eighties when Thatcher was Prime Minister, and Reagan was back here, and the British left was having a kind of massive spasm of both nostalgia and hostility to this new, frankly capitalist, Milton-Friedman-driven atmosphere. They often lectured me, my British friends, on the inferiority of the American system, their party-based, parliamentary system, which was much more flexible. You could call elections, you could lose faith in a leader and replace them. But theirs is looking pretty Keystone Kops right now.

Matt Taibbi: Is there anything funnier than a British person trying to argue superiority of anything British with regard to the United States? I mean that with all due respect. There are a lot of great things about the English. I lived there as a boy. They make great nature shows. They make excellent detective series. They’re really good writers. But they’re a glorified version of Puerto Rico now. They’re a US territory, and part of the deal is that we get to make fun of them. And we also get to recruit some of their talent to star in our superhero movies as villains and to narrate stuff, because they’re really good at that, too. Although we had a period of letting them run magazines here, and that didn’t end well.

Walter Kirn: I would relegate them to the status of international influencer, a sort of TikTok style influencer. Between their royal family and their various melodramatic political spasms. They’re somewhat colorful political characters. They hold our attention. But they haven’t been people of substance on the international scene for a while, at least since Tony Blair went. They had a kind of renaissance as part of the anti-Saddam coalition. But since then, there hasn’t been much.

Matt Taibbi: Really all they did in that episode is put a fake stamp of approval on our bogus reasons for invading Iraq, which is what they’re there for, to give a veneer of civilization on the things that we do. That’s what Britain is good at. They sound civilized. The politicians sound civilized or, and, and often look civilized, although not always. They’re there to do what we ask them to do, and they’re good at it.

Walter Kirn: When they coordinate with the American president, when there’s a Thatcher to a Reagan, or there’s a Blair while there’s a Bush, they often put a kind of bow tie on the American persona internationally. Blair restates what the stumbling Texan, heir to the Bush Dynasty, can’t say very well. He sits in the big councils and gives that special touch of class. Thatcher gave a touch of class in a way to an American movie actor president, though she was a different kind of figure. Boris Johnson’s rather short reign didn’t seem to coordinate very well with America.

Matt Taibbi: He meant less to the American imagination than Harry and Meghan did. All they are now are grifters. They came over and got a deal to do this massive Spotify podcast and did one and a half episodes, got paid $30 million or some ridiculous amount of money, and then checked out. To that, I say, good for them. I’m glad. That’s what America’s for. You come here, you rip us off, because we’re stupid and have lots of money. I applaud all Europeans who sell their European-ness on the American market and get vastly overpaid to do so. I think that’s a wonderful thing when it happens. But I balk at taking them seriously. And, and frankly, uh… I guess I should just admit that I have a dark fantasy about sending the 101st Airborne to occupy England sometimes.

Walter Kirn: Let’s explore your childhood, Matt, because this seems to be not purely policy-based bias that you have.

Matt Taibbi: I was picked on by the Brits when I was a kid. So I cop to that.

Walter Kirn: They’re great at being mean to people. I mean, it took me about a year living in England to realize that the national pastime is insulting you. Then they say, “Oh, just taking the mickey.” To segue into our other censorship based story we must remember that Harry joined the Aspen Institute’s “misinformation initiative” or whatever it was called. He did speak in front of the UN not long ago about the necessary necessity of pure discourse or, I don’t know — something about the dangers of misinformation. Harry does have that brief, even internationally, and here with our think-tankers. It does seem that you see stories every once in a while about Britain being a little ahead of us in the combating-woke-micro-aggressions department. I’ve seen a lot of stories about policemen showing up at people’s houses because they tweeted something that was deemed offensive to some group or something. I always like to feel that we’re a little freer than they are. I think we are...

Matt Taibbi: (irrationally angry) Wait, backing up — how do we have Prince Harry in charge of anything? What are the qualifications of that person? That mystifies me,

Walter Kirn: That’s the whole American experiment. We rejected the notion that that birth equals qualification, but it hangs on back in very old England.

Matt Taibbi: But then why do we do it too?

On the disappearance of ABC News producer James Gordon Meek:

Walter Kirn: Anyone who has a conversation in public, I think has begun to feel the cold fingers of the state on their shoulder. The amount of censorship in this society that’s run through Silicon Valley onto places like Twitter, Facebook, et cetera, is great, but the amount of self-censorship that’s going on in the minds of the people is far greater. And you begin to wonder if America can even speak in the way it used to, either personally or across the wires. Uh, I’m starting to get a sense of people talking in code retreating to sort of bunkers of like-mindedness, or simply being false in their public presentations. It is a cold digital curtain that’s falling on America, and whatever the specific justifications for it are, whatever the individual raids are predicated on, the feeling that reigns is one of inhibition.

Matt Taibbi: To follow up on your prior thought, the old bedtime story in our business was that the person who worked in the media was somebody who was just bursting with the emotion of defiance and unwillingness to be told what to say or think, or to self-censor. The people we celebrated the most in the media were the least inhibited people, the people who were least interested in what the government had to say about what, what it was. This could have been represented by somebody like Hunter Thompson, whose literary style of total defiance was what made him so popular. Or it was somebody like Sy Hersh…

Walter Kirn: I was just going to mention him.

Matt Taibbi: He was in defiance of every institutional safeguard in the country, found out true things, told the public about them. And even though he was a controversial figure, the public thought, this guy is great, because he’s taking risks, he’s working the phones to find out the truth and give it to us and, and fuck what the Pentagon thinks about it. There was no question that there was a tone of defiance in the way that he wrote that was really attractive. He told us about the CIA’s domestic surveillance program…

Walter Kirn: The My Lai massacre. Abu Ghraib.

Matt Taibbi: This was the opposite of official messaging. And now, where is that? They don’t want us to be that.

Walter Kirn: The character of the maverick or the rebel is about as relevant as the whaler is to modern industry. I don’t know what inspires young people to become journalists now. The possibility of doxing your neighbors, the possibility of being a Taylor Lorenz who cruises the internet to find wrongthink, and then exposes its speakers? Is it more like a policeman to be a journalist now?

* * *

Life in Camp (1864) by Winslow Homer

* * *


by James Kunstler

It’s hard to escape the awful feeling that Western Civ has a death wish, or to say which of its constituent nations wants to get to the graveyard first. Great Britain might be leading the pack with its Three-Card-Monte financial finagling economy and hot potato political leadership. Old Blighty sinks visibly by the day into sclerotic torpor — even while its MI-6 intel gang works overtime scheming to blow things up, to make the Russia-Ukraine mess even worse. Newly-tapped Prime Minister Rishi Sunak faces the same set of quandaries that sank Boris Johnson and Liz Truss, and his country will have to call a painful general election before long to make its government legitimate. Oh, to be a fly-on-the-wall at the first meeting between Mr. Sunak and King Charles.

Germany took a wrecking bar to its own economy this summer while its people kept goose-stepping to the absurd Covid “vaccine” tyranny narrative. The German gene for obedience marches them into their third national calamity in a hundred-odd years, with hardly a peep of political objection. Yet, deep inside them lurks that age-old Teutonic libido for violence. When will that break against the feckless head-of-state Olaf Scholz, with all the charisma of a Dampfnudel?

France’s Macron called yesterday to settle the Ukraine mess “on Ukraine’s terms,” as if that palooka of a country was not about to be KO’d by the neighboring land it was induced to antagonize by the NATO mafia. Italy’s new PM Georgia Meloni promised Ukraine “her full support” over the weekend, perhaps forgetting that almost nothing supports Italy’s continued existence at First World levels of comfort and comity. Spain, the Netherlands, Sweden and the other lesser NATO players just bystand stupidly as the alliance declares war on reality and all of Europe slides toward neo-medieval cold and darkness.

Then there’s us, Crazyland, formerly known as the USA, floating the possibility of a nuclear missile exchange, as if that were any kind of workable answer to the completely unnecessary war we instigated in the crossroads of Eurasia. Now, the word is out that a 101st Airborne “Screaming Eagles” strike force is assembling in Romania, next door to Ukraine, for some supposed incursion into the war zone — where there would be a fair chance of them getting slaughtered. Are you serious, Lloyd Austin and Mark Milley, or is this just some new deranged Woke vaudeville act in your continuing effort to humiliate the US Armed Forces?

Factor in, of course, the fast-approaching midterm election, which seems to have driven the “Joe Biden” regime and its Party of Chaos into a fugue of extreme desperation as they face a possibly massive repudiation at the polls that will put them out of business for many election cycles to come — if not permanently — and bring an end to the Wokester-Jacobin freak show.

How the Democratic Party became hostage to the worst array of political ideas ever assembled remains a profound mystery. How do they persist supporting a Covid “vaccine” campaign that is now obviously false and dangerous? Is it simply an inability to acknowledge a terrible mistake? Or is it — as things seem — something darker, a deliberate effort to inflict harm on the American people? Kind of looks that way. Several states quickly and loudly opted out of “vaccine” mandates for schools since the CDC’s advisory committee’s bizarre 15 to 0 vote to include the janky mRNA shots on the childhood “schedule.”

How did “JB” & Company imagine that a wide-open border along with big cash gifts to border-jumpers was going to play with the economically sore-beset public? Who imagined that drag queens grinding their junk in children’s faces was a winning ploy? Who told them that Americans would approve of turning the FBI into a Gestapo, barging into politically-targeted households with SWAT teams before dawn? How did they forget that there is a First Amendment to the Constitution that forbids the government to interfere with freedom of speech? Who is actually behind this insanity?

These never-before-seen acts-of-war against American citizens will call for some serious ‘splainin’ after the Party of Chaos is thrashed in the election — assuming they don’t make the final and fatal misstep of pulling some excuse to cancel, postpone, or muck with their November 8 appointment with fate. One such ‘splainin’ flurry is already set, since Judge Terry Doughty of the Western Louisiana District Federal Court has ordered Anthony Fauci and a train of high-profile officials to testify under oath in a lawsuit brought jointly by Missouri AG Eric Schmitt and Louisiana AG Jeff Landry on the “JB” regime’s collusion with social media to censor news and suppress free speech.

There is also the strangely lingering matter of Special Counsel John Durham’s inquiry into the origins of the RussiaGate scandal. It’s pretty inconceivable to me that he will quit the operation after the two seemingly lame cases against attorney Michael Sussmann and Brookings errand boy Igor Danchenko — both failures to gain convictions. What Mr. Durham did accomplish in those exercises was to get a whole lot of testimony submitted as evidence (that is, on-the-record) implicating the higher ranks of the FBI and the DOJ in all that malicious and illegal nonsense — perhaps enough to bring cases against the glaringly obvious true culprits such as James Comey, Andrew McCabe, Peter Strzok and the rest of the Crossfire Hurricane gang. Is Mr. Durham being obstructed by Merrick Garland? (If so, you can be sure the country will eventually find out.) Or does the Special Counsel have the guts to carry on somehow anyway? I think we’ll know after the election.

(Support Kunstler’s writing by visiting his Patreon Page.)

* * *

The SS Detroit

* * *


There were growing signs that the occupation government in the southern city of Kherson was preparing the city for fighting ahead of a possible Ukrainian counteroffensive.

A senior Ukrainian official said Russia’s occupation administration in Kherson is leaving.

Top allies warn Russia against using ‘dirty bomb’ accusations to escalate the war.

Russian talk show host suspended after saying Ukrainian children should be drowned or burned.

Brittney Griner doesn’t expect ‘miracles to happen’ with her appeal, her lawyer says.

More Ukrainian officials accuse Russia of intentionally slowing grain shipments.

Italy’s new right-wing government seeks to reaffirm support for Ukraine. 


* * *

* * *


The United States has pledged more than 52 billion euros in military, financial and humanitarian aid to Ukraine since the war began in February 2022 and October 3.

As Statista's Anna Fleck details, data from the Ukraine Support Tracker shows that the U.S. has provided by far the most aid to the country, followed by EU institutions (16.2 billion euros), the UK (6.7 billion euros), Germany (3.3 billion euros) and Canada (3 billion euros).

* * *

* * *

WESTERN PROPAGANDA means people always oppose the last war but not the current war. The US provoking and sustaining its Ukraine proxy war is no more ethical than its invading of Iraq; it just looks that way due to propaganda. Ukraine isn't the good war, it's just the current war.

It is only by the copious amounts of propaganda our civilization is being hammered with that this is not immediately obvious to everyone. In the future (assuming we don't annihilate ourselves first), the propaganda will have cleared from the air enough for people to see clearly and realize that they were lied to. Again.

The US indisputably deliberately provoked this war. The US is indisputably keeping this war going. The US indisputably benefits from this war while Ukrainians, Russians and Europeans get nothing but suffering from it. Empire apologists will admit to the latter in rare moments of honesty, as Matthew Yglesias recently did when he wrote the following:

The United States is using up a lot of military equipment in the war, but it’s being used for the purpose of destroying Russian military equipment. Since we were already fully committed to an anti-Russian military alliance, this is actually a really good deal for us. Basically, NATO equipment + Ukrainian lives are being traded for Russian equipment + Russian lives, which leaves NATO coming out ahead. That's doubly true because NATO is much richer than Russia, so we win a long-term game of "everyone explode their weapons as fast as they can make them."

Again, though, what makes that really true is that NATO material is killing Russian soldiers, while Russian material is killing Ukrainian soldiers. That’s a deal in our favor.

It's easy to oppose the last war. It's hard to oppose current wars as the propaganda machine is shoving them down our throats. Everyone's anti-war until the war propaganda starts.

— Caitlin Johnstone

* * *


  1. Kirk Vodopals October 25, 2022

    Boris Johnson, representing western nations, supposedly sank a peace deal early on brokered by Turkey between Ukraine and Russia. Now he scuttles off and hides. Trump and Tulsi are beating the peace drum while Lindsay and Alexandra play verbal diarrhea supporting arms deals. Anthony Blinken does zero negotiating for peace, rather he’s on a tour to sell more weapons. At home, none of the political candidates recognize that “it’s the economy, stupid” as they fight over abortion, gender and “standing with Ukraine”. And Xi has his predecessor man-handled out of a live televised ceremony. What’s next!

    • George Hollister October 25, 2022

      Pretty good summary. But I am wondering what the offramp is for Putin, that he can sell as a win on the one hand, and doesn’t throw Ukraine under the bus on the other. Meanwhile, Turkey is selling drones to Ukraine. And someone in Xi’s administration must be reading about America’s decline in the AVA. What we are witnessing is a similar recipe for disaster as we had before WW1.

      War is a part of the human condition, and having a good national defense essential. But good judgement is not inherently a part of any of it, and this is the case for all nations, and national leaders.

  2. Marmon October 25, 2022

    14 Days Left.

    End The Insanity.

    Vote Republican


    • Marshall Newman October 25, 2022

      Wrong again, as usual.

    • Marshall Newman October 25, 2022

      Let’s review the facts.
      Donald Trump is an unapologetic liar. He is a race-baiter. He propagated a conspiracy claiming the 2020 election rigged, though every subsequent investigation proved it was not. He encouraged a violent insurrection at the Capitol to overturn an election he lost. He stole documents from the White House.
      All this, and the majority of Republican politicians support him.
      Only those few Republicans who reject Donald Trump, and support our Constitution and our democracy deserve your vote. Those who support him and/or anything he represents should be voted out of office.

      • George Hollister October 25, 2022

        Gee, the same can be said for Democrats, and Hilary Clinton. The most unapologetic liar of our time, and he is way ahead of everybody, is Adam Schiff.

        • George Hollister October 25, 2022

          Republicans and Democrats are the two sides of the same coin called a Voter’s Choice. One side or the other should not be selected too often, or we we end up with what is happening in California right now.

          • Harvey Reading October 25, 2022

            So, what do you propose? Another 8 years of Pete Wilson, or some similar moron? Reagan, fortunately, is dead and rotting…

        • Marshall Newman October 26, 2022

          No it cannot. None of those facts can be said of the Democrats or Hilary Clinton. Either show the evidence to back up your claim or be known as a liar.

    • Chuck Dunbar October 25, 2022

      “DON’T YOU KNOW the devil wears a suit and tie.” And maybe he wears one of those red caps, or pretends to be a patriot, or maybe even rides a Harley….

    • Harvey Reading October 25, 2022

      Screw Biden. Screw Trump.
      Screw ALL the neoliberal and fascist scum.


  3. Marmon October 25, 2022


    NY State Supreme Court reinstates all fired unvaccinated employees, orders backpay, says the state violated rights, acted arbitrary & capricious, notes: “Being vaccinated does not prevent an individual from contracting or transmitting Covid-19.”


    • Marco McClean October 25, 2022

      “Requiring brakes in cars does not prevent cars from crashing into other cars or trees, nor from being crashed into by another car or a tree.”

  4. Cotdbigun October 25, 2022

    Absolutely, we have a country to save! The two year horror show needs some sanity injected and a u-turn on inflation is also a must. You can do the right thing and still hate Trump, no problem there.

  5. Bruce McEwen October 25, 2022

    We appear to be getting closer and closer to Jose Saramago’s novel, Seeing, wherein, in the aftermath of a pandemic—a book and author that predates Covid— people find they have better things to do than vote in the next general election — which strikes terror into the government and sends ‘em packing!

    • Bruce McEwen October 25, 2022

      Cockburn’s definition of gonzo — subjective (based on personal tastes), deliberately dissolute ( lax in morals), and excitedly coarse (rude, crude and vulgar)— defines JHK pretty good.

      • Bruce McEwen October 25, 2022

        Come to think on it, I expect JHK is just playing it safe, by identifying as an election-denier/antivaxxer goon (in the Native American sense of the term), in hopes of being spared on the approaching (November 9th-10th) “Kristallnacht” when the Trumpsters go on their rogue elephant rampage at the end of the approaching general election.

  6. Eric Sunswheat October 25, 2022

    RE: In the face of renewed corporate attempts to privatize Medicare through private insurance scams termed “Medicare Advantage, … oppose the corporate takeover of Medicare.

    —>. October 25, 2022
    Advocates for Medicare beneficiaries and members of Congress say more is needed. They blame insurance companies backed by private equity funds that they say are trying to win Medicare Advantage clients with advertising bluster instead of better insurance plans…

    There’s a separate threat from would-be fraudsters who try to take advantage of the open enrollment period that runs through Dec. 7 to trick consumers into signing up for services that could prove expensive or to steal their Medicare number.

    —>. Check out the new 2023 Medicare & You eHandbook! The eHandbook is easy to search or download, so you can quickly find what you’re looking for. (Regulations change every year.)

    —>. The Medicare Health Insurance Counseling and Advocacy Program (HICAP) through the California Department of Aging, provides local individual counseling by appointment and interactive educational Zoom webinars as the primary source for free and unbiased, accurate and objective Medicare information, advocacy and technical assistance to beneficiaries.

    Our North Bay region serves the six counties of Marin, Sonoma, Mendocino, Lake, Napa and Solano.

  7. Marmon October 25, 2022


    Liberal Democrats withdraw letter to Biden that urged him to rethink Ukraine strategy

    “The Congressional Progressive Caucus has rescinded a letter, signed by 30 House liberals and sent to the White House on Monday, that urged President Biden to negotiate directly with Russia to bring an end to the war in Ukraine.

    The withdrawal comes a day after the letter, led by Congressional Progressive Caucus Chair Pramila Jayapal (D-Wash.), triggered fierce pushback from many Democrats. The retraction was also a stunning misstep for a prominent House liberal who has expressed interest in seeking a leadership position in the party.”

    “This is one of the main reasons I left the Dem Party: it’s COMPLETELY controlled by an elite cabal of warmongers. Any Dem who opposes their warmongering agenda is beat into submission. Sadly, to vote Democrat is a vote for war & more war—possibly nuclear.”

    -Tulsi Gabbard 🌺


    • Marmon October 25, 2022

      I’m a Trump Republican, [the opposite of George Hollister] we need to make a deal, for the sake of mankind. One thing I learned from my dad, everything is negotiable. Trump is a champion when it comes to the art of the deal.


    • Harvey Reading October 25, 2022

      Trouble is, the fasciuglicans are even worse at warmongering and murder…remember the Bush wars with Iraq, the first, initiated by Pappy, to eradicate “Vietnam Syndrome”, the second, shrouded in a pack of total lies, just for the hell of it, so Shrub could finally prove himself a man by slaughtering civilians. You’re sick if you believe any person with a brain would vote for either version of murder incorporated.

    • Bruce McEwen October 25, 2022

      CNN is on the front lines right now, boots on the ground, Wolf Blitzer signing 155 artillery rounds with ribald repartees to the Dem libs who tried to talk some sense into the rabid war mongers… it’s CNN’s war, now, Wolfie yanking the lanyard for the first fire- for-effect salvos! “On Donner, on Blitzer, on Bilken und Blunder!! …!!!!

  8. Marmon October 25, 2022


    Report: Giants prepared to spend whatever it takes to land Aaron Judge.



    • Marmon October 25, 2022


      Here are 5 possible landing spots for Judge. [Here’s #2]


      “Ask almost anybody inside the game which team could pry “Judge away from the Bronx and the first answer is usually the Giants, who have been looking for a face-of-the-franchise type of star to succeed Buster Posey. San Francisco took swings for both Giancarlo Stanton and Bryce Harper in recent years, showing that the Giants aren’t afraid to pay a star player.

      With only $92 million in salaries committed in 2023 — a number that will likely drop to $70 million if/when Carlos Rodón opts out — and $20.5 million guaranteed in 2024, the Giants have plenty of payroll flexibility. Also of note: Judge hails from Linden, Calif., less than 100 miles from Oracle.” Park. Coming home might not be a determining factor for Judge, but it could prove to be a selling point for the Giants.”


      • Marmon October 25, 2022

        Aaron Judge’s wife is also from Linden California. Give that a thought, Mr. Anderson.


        • Marmon October 25, 2022

          I bet Judge and his wife grew up as Giant’s fans.


  9. Michael Turner November 14, 2022

    It’s always amusing to read Kunstler’s errant “ predictions” retrospectively, but his election forecast of October 25 is the funniest ever.

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