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Posted on: Feb 04, 2023
"All men have their vices. In my lifetime I have collected the entire set! That makes me more of an authority than those who scream that thus-and-such is bad for you while at the same time insisting they have never experienced it themselves." -- Michael Rivero
Ford announced on Monday that it is pausing construction on a multi-billion dollar battery plant in Marshall, Michigan that had drawn scrutiny from U.S. lawmakers over the company’s partnership with Chinese battery-maker Contemporary Amperex Technology Co. Ltd., or CATL.
A small group of House Republicans has said that they’re willing to risk a possible government shutdown, rejecting party leadership’s funding bills unless specific demands are met. But they may face an uphill battle in the court of public opinion, according to an analysis of polling data showing House Speaker Kevin McCarthy remains immensely popular with conservatives.
A rare case of white-on-black killings, the triple murder at a Dollar Tree in Jacksonville, FL, attracted the attention of the President of the United States, eager to angry up his black base [‘Silence is complicity’: President Biden denounces racist shooting at Florida dollar store, by Grethel Aguila, Miami Herald, August 27, 2023]. It was used by the Leftist New Republic as evidence of the “threat” of mass right-wing violence [Violence Is Coming? Sorry, It’s Already Here—and Getting Worse, by Brynn Tannehill, New Republic, August 31, 2023].
But even including Jacksonville, there were only 4 (four) white-on-black homicides in August. In contrast, there were about 35 black-on-white killings (we fudge because a couple of the victims seem to be white Hispanics). As always, the Regime ignores this continuing carnage—in fact, it is probably exacerbating it: some of these killings appear to be random “Hate Crimes.”
US State Department spokesman Matthew Miller told reporters he had nothing to say about alleged attempts by unnamed figures in Washington to prevent Tucker Carlson from interviewing Russian President Vladimir Putin.
“This will be good,” Miller quipped upon hearing Tucker’s name, interrupting a journalist’s question. After drawing some laughs in the room, the reporter went on to ask whether the spokesman had any comments.
“I have no idea what he’s talking about,” Miller stated with a smile, before moving on to the next question.
Last week, former Fox News host Tucker Carlson told Swiss publication Die Weltwoche that he had attempted to set up an interview with Putin, but did not say when the interview was to occur or how exactly the US government intervened.
A Polish government minister has launched a bid to extradite Yaroslav Hunka, the 98-year-old Ukrainian-Canadian man who fought in a German-Nazi division during World War Two and last week received a standing ovation in Canada’s parliament.
“In view of the scandalous events in the Canadian parliament, which involved honouring, in the presence of President Zelensky, a member of the criminal Nazi SS Galizien formation, I have taken steps towards the possible extradition of this man to Poland,” announced education minister Przemysław Czarnek.
He published a copy of a letter he has sent to the head of the Institute of National Remembrance (IPN) – a state historical body that has prosecutorial powers – asking him to “urgently [establish] whether Yaroslav Hunka is wanted for crimes against the Polish nation or Poles of Jewish origin”.
The Nord Stream pipelines, built to deliver gas under the Baltic Sea from Russia to Germany, were hit by explosions in September 2022. The pipeline's operator, Nord Stream AG, said that the damage was unprecedented and it was impossible to estimate the time repairs might take.
The administration of US President Joe Biden decided to sabotage the Nord Stream and Nord Stream 2 gas pipelines due to fears of losing its influence over Germany, and Western Europe as a whole, amid the supply of cheap Russian gas to the European continent, Pulitzer Prize-winning US investigative journalist Seymour Hersh said in an article on Substack, noting that the incident had nothing to do with the conflict in Ukraine.
"The Biden administration blew up the pipelines but the action had little to do with winning or stopping the war in Ukraine. It resulted from fears in the White House that Germany would waver and turn on the flow of Russia gas—and that Germany and then NATO, for economic reasons, would fall under the sway of Russia and its extensive and inexpensive natural resources. And thus followed the ultimate fear: that America would lose its long-standing primacy in Western Europe," Hersh wrote.
The German government began a massive €100 billion rearmament campaign last year, pledging additional money for the military as social spending retreats and the country faces the threat of deindustrialization and economic stagnation.
German Defense Minister Boris Pistorius has some explaining to do amid reports that a €1.3 billion batch of new digital radio communications systems for the Bundeswehr’s fleet of tracked and wheeled vehicles will be forced to sit in storage for years due to compatibility and installation difficulties.
“34,000 ground forces vehicles are to be equipped with digital radio devices. In total we’re talking about billions of euros. Deliveries of the radios have been ongoing since January. Now it turns out that the devices will be impossible to install anytime soon,” a German publication wrote, summarizing the problem.
The digital radios, produced by German technology manufacturer Rohde & Schwarz, are supposed to replace the Bundeswehr’s older analogue sets. But the new equipment is reportedly proving difficult to mount on the military’s many different types of vehicles, requiring the purchase additional adapter kits, and showing other problems, like low-capacity batteries. Adjustments are reportedly necessary for the more than one hundred different vehicle types in service with the Bundeswehr.
The white owners of two small businesses based in Houston, Texas, are suing to block government policies privileging minority-owned businesses in city contracts. The policies also privilege women-owned businesses. However, the Pacific Legal Foundation (PLF), which represents the businesses, told Legal Insurrection it “made a strategic decision to focus directly on the race-based set-asides.”
Jerry and Theresa Thompson own Landscape Consultants of Texas and Metropolitan Landscape Management. Their companies compete for city landscaping contracts. However, because of the Thompsons’ race, their companies “cannot compete on equal footing with other businesses.”
Landscape Consultants, for example, has a $1.3 million contract with the city with an 11 percent set aside for minority-owned businesses.
This means that Landscape Consultants must take at least $143,000 of work away from its (largely minority) staff, even though they are capable of doing the work, and pay a competitor to do the work—solely because of the race of Landscape Consultants’ owner and the race of its competitor’s owner.
Legal Insurrection readers may recall that I reported State Farm, one of the largest insurance agencies in the country, was no longer accept applications for home and business insurance in California due to wildfire risks and the cost of rebuilding.
To stop more insurance companies from ditching California, the state’s insurance commissioner has approved plans for firms to use “climate change” as an excuse to gin up rates.
California will let insurance companies consider climate change when setting their prices, the state’s chief regulator announced Thursday, a move aimed at preventing insurers from fleeing the state over fears of massive losses from wildfires and other natural disasters.
Unlike other states, California does not let insurance companies consider current or future risks when deciding how much to charge for an insurance policy. Instead, they can only consider what’s happened on a property in the past to set the price.
…On Thursday, California Insurance Commissioner Ricardo Lara said the state will write new rules to let insurers look to the future when setting their rates. But companies will only get to do this if they agree to write more policies for homeowners who live in areas with the most risk — including communities threatened by wildfires.
Breaking news on this Monday out of China where we have new data on the dumping of U.S. treasuries and what this means for the U.S. dollar dominance. Saudi Arabia also dumping U.S. treasuries at an increased rate over the past few weeks. What is going on?
Canadian House of Commons Speaker Anthony Rota has apologized for honoring a Ukrainian man who served in Adolf Hitler’s Waffen SS forces during World War II, and calling him “a Ukrainian and a Canadian hero.”
Yaroslav Hunka, 98, a former member of the SS 14th Galician Division, was given a standing ovation in the chamber during the visit of Ukrainian President Vladimir Zelensky on Friday. The incident was heavily criticized by Jewish groups.
“On Friday, September 22, in my remarks following the address of the President of Ukraine, I recognized an individual in the gallery,” Rota said in a statement on Sunday. “I have subsequently become aware of more information which causes me to regret my decision to do so.”
Without mentioning Hunka by name, Rota reiterated that the Ukrainian man was one of his constituents. “I particularly want to extend my deepest apologies to Jewish communities in Canada and around the world. I accept full responsibility for my actions,” he said.
The civil rights complaint by the Equal Protection Project (EqualProtect.org) of the Legal Insurrection Foundatoin regarding two racially-discriminatory scholarships at Western Kentucky University has spread widely in the media, including initial coverage at The Chronicle of Higher Education, Fox News, and the Daily Caller.
While Rep. Adam Schiff (D-CA) campaigns for a Senate seat on a platform of earmarks for local causes, the 12-term Congressman has been busted steering millions in taxpayer dollars to for-profit defense contractors, many of whom have been political donors to his campaigns.
According to an investigation by Politico, Schiff "has offered an incomplete and potentially misleading account of his record on earmarks."
A POLITICO review of congressional earmarks and political contributions found that in addition to the money for homelessness and drug treatment, Schiff also steered millions to for-profit companies and raised tens of thousands for his House reelection campaigns from corporate executives and people connected to them. The review was mostly limited to publicly available data from the brief three-year window when corporate earmarks were disclosed.
In two particularly egregious cases, Schiff channeled millions in funding to Smiths Detection and Phasebridge, Inc., two defense companies within his district - with $6 million steered to Smiths Detection and $3 million to Phasebridge. Both moves would have been barred under reforms adopted in 2010. This financial maneuvering coincided with Schiff receiving $8,500 in contributions from PMA Group PAC and two family members of Paul Magliocchetti, founder and owner of the lobbying firm retained by both defense companies.
The recent sparring between Elon Musk and the despicable Jonathan Greenblatt of the Anti-Defamation League (ADL) has cast considerable light on the successful attempts by Jewish groups to dominate America’s foreign as well as some domestic policies, in part by taking away the First Amendment right to Freedom of Speech so their behavior cannot be challenged. As readers of Unz will be aware, Musk has threatened to sue the ADL for as much as $22 billion for defaming him and doing material damage to his business interests while also falsely smearing Musk himself and the platform for allegedly providing an antisemitic haven for “hate speech.” In Musk’s view, the ADL has put pressure on potential advertisers not to do business with him and to engage in a total boycott of his social networking sites.
Greenblatt’s argument is that material that he considers to be anti-semitic should not be allowed on any public forum, to include Musk’s site X, formerly known as Twitter. If Greenblatt were concerned with public incitements to kill Jews or damage their property there might be a case to be made, but the fact is that such behavior is already criminalized. Greenblatt is much more expansive than that, condemning any criticism of Jewish group or even individual behavior or the actions of Israel, which have included various war crimes and crimes against humanity to include targeting and killing Palestinian children and harvesting the organs of Palestinian prisoners. Israel is also a nation that is increasingly ethnically exclusive and has a state religion that is intolerant and repressive of other creeds, to include minority Christians and Muslims.
New York’s City Council — which just passed a budget that’s already been deemed a flop — is now spending some of its time advancing a plan that could kill off monuments honoring figures such as George Washington.
The Democratic-led council’s Cultural Affairs Committee is set to hold a public hearing Tuesday on a proposal to yank artworks from city property dedicated to historical figures such as George Washington, Peter Stuyvesant and Christopher Columbus because of their controversial pasts.
But critics immediately branded the effort as cancel culture run amok.
After decades as one of the world’s largest recipients of United States foreign aid, the Egyptian government was nervous about how long the largess would continue at that level. But when the United States cut a sliver of the aid in 2017 over Egypt’s grim human rights record, stunning Cairo, Egyptian officials found an ally in Senator Robert J. Menendez of New Jersey.
He happened to be the top-ranking Democrat on the Senate Foreign Relations Committee, a position that Egypt evidently felt could help its footing in Washington. And even as he accused the Trump administration of being lax when it came to Egypt, prosecutors say he was doing favors for Egyptian officials who had gotten to know him through his then-girlfriend — signing off on arms sales and secretly helping it lobby Washington to release funding.
In return, according to a federal indictment of Mr. Menendez unsealed on Friday, Mr. Menendez and his wife, Nadine Menendez, received hundreds of thousands of dollars in cash, checks and bars of gold.
It was a price that Egyptian officials clearly felt was worth paying.
Almost nine out of every ten Ukrainian draftees who enlisted in the army a year ago have either been killed or injured in combat, Ukrainian media reported on Friday citing a senior conscription officer in the Poltava Region.
Lt. Colonel Vitaly Berezhny, who is currently serving as the acting head of the territorial center for recruitment and social support, made this admission during a Poltava City Council meeting.
Sounding the alarm, Berezhny told meeting participants that “out of the 100 individuals who joined the units last fall, only 10-20 of them remain, the rest are dead, wounded or disabled.” Going from this statistic, he declared that the military was in urgent need of reinforcements.
He acknowledged that local authorities are facing significant challenges in their conscription efforts, having only achieved 13 percent of the mobilization plan. This places the Poltava at the bottom of the region’s rankings.
Aside from a Twitter-impulsive former Polish foreign minister gleefully suggesting the U.S. did it, the mainstream media commentariat had no inhibitions about openly blaming Russia through the fall of 2022.
A year later, however, the world still does not know “who done it.” Some critics suggest the probes may be getting into politically uncomfortable territory, with recent German reports pointing to a Ukrainian military connection to the blasts.
“Whether it’s instinctive or by direction, there is a clear attempt to simply bury this story completely,” said Anatol Lieven, the director of the Quincy Institute’s Eurasia Program, comparing the seeming lack of U.S. media interest to George Orwell’s “memory hole” in the novel “1984.”
“Obviously that is because the main theories that have been advanced for the responsibility of the sabotage, if true, would be imminently embarrassing for Western governments.”
For years, the Nord Stream pipelines have epitomized energy stability for Europe’s largest economy. Germany’s industries, households, and economic engine have heavily relied on the uninterrupted flow of Russian gas. However, overnight, a sudden and audacious disruption to this vital energy supply sent shockwaves across Germany, leaving it exposed and vulnerable.
The assault on these pipelines last year, allegedly involving American interference, has led to a surge in energy costs within Germany, and this is just the beginning. Industries grapple with unprecedented energy expenses, and consumers witness utility bills skyrocketing, contributing to widespread business closures and significant job losses. In addition to the grim economic outlook, the Ifo Institute has reiterated a projected 0.4% contraction for Germany’s economy in 2023. The prospects of a second-half recovery appear dim due to the country’s limited exposure to the post-pandemic services sector boom. While a 0.2% GDP contraction is anticipated in Q3, a full-blown recession is not yet on the horizon.
Nevertheless, Germany’s economic challenges persist. The nation’s economy remained stubbornly stagnant in the second quarter of 2023, failing to rebound from a previous winter recession, thereby solidifying its position as one of the world’s most fragile major economies. This Q2 stagnation aligns with earlier forecasts and signals a year-on-year adjusted GDP contraction of 0.2% for the same period. Germany, the primary economic engine of Europe, faces a bleak economic outlook, citing factors such as weakened purchasing power, diminished industrial orders, a slowdown in China’s economy, and the repercussions of aggressive monetary policy tightening. While some hold hope for a year-end resurgence, forecasts indicate that Germany may trail behind major Eurozone economies throughout 2023 due to these persistent challenges.
Findings in a new study challenge the mainstream narrative that COVID-19 vaccinations prevent long COVID. The study found that while previous infections reduce the risk of long COVID by 86 percent, vaccination status prior to COVID infection is irrelevant to a person's risk of developing long COVID.
“The notion had been that both previous infection as well as vaccination reduce the chances of subsequent long COVID should you become infected,” Dr. William Schaffner, professor of preventive medicine and health policy at Vanderbilt University Medical Center, told The Epoch Times.
These investigators have poured "cool water" on that concept, he continued.
Researchers from Martin Luther University Halle-Wittenberg, an over-500-year-old research university in Germany, found thatpeople with the highest risk of long COVID or post-COVID condition, as the authors wrote, were unvaccinated people infected with the Wuhan variant, followed by unvaccinated and vaccinated participants infected with the alpha variant.
While not explicitly discussed in the study, the study’s diagram and supplementary tables showed that with the exception of infection with the Wuhan variant, unvaccinated people tend to have a slightly lower risk of long COVID than their vaccinated counterparts.
A leaked U.S. Office of Naval Intelligence (ONI) slide is garnering concern about the Chinese regime’s continued capability to produce naval vessels at an alarmingly faster rate than the United States.
The leaked graphic depicts shipyards in China as being able to build new naval vessels at a rate that's 232 times greater than that of the United States. The ONI confirmed its authenticity to The Drive, which first published the slide.
This outsized capacity to support China's People's Liberation Army (PLA) Navy has caused some analysts to raise the alarm that the United States won't be able to close the gap for many years to come.
Retired Capt. James Fanell, a former director of intelligence and information operations for the U.S. Pacific Fleet, doesn't share the same level of pessimism, although he does acknowledge the challenges involved in rebuilding the United States' shipbuilding capacity.
He says closing the gap with the Chinese regime will require “a dramatic shift in the policy of unaccountable engagement that now characterizes the Biden administration.”
“The challenges are also greater than just political will,” Mr. Fanell told The Epoch Times. “There is an issue of America’s shipbuilding industry that has gone into disrepair since WWII.”
The SEC is now tracking your stock trades by your Social Security Number, and it shares the data with 3,000 outside agencies.
“A consolidated audit trail that accurately tracks orders throughout their lifecycle and identifies the broker-dealers handling them will provide us with an unprecedented ability to effectively oversee the markets we regulate,” said SEC Chairman Mary Schapiro.
The new rule becomes effective 60 days after its publication in the Federal Register. SROs are required to submit the NMS plan to the Commission within 270 days of the rule’s publication in the Federal Register. Once the Commission approves the NMS plan, the SROs are required to report the required data to the central repository within one year, and members of the SROs are required to report within two years. Certain small broker-dealers will have up to three years to report the data.
Voting machine company Smartmatic, which is suing Fox News and former President Donald Trump's top allies over their claims that the company's machines facilitated cheating in the 2020 US election, has been accused as uncharged co-conspirators in a bribery scheme in the Philippines.
According to court documents revealed by CNN, the Department of Justice has filed money laundering charges against former Filipino election administrator, Andres Bautista, who has been accused - along with unnamed Smartmatic executives - of illegal financial transactions.
The accusations levied against Smartmatic suggest attempts to funnel $4 million to Bautista, adding fuel to the allegations surrounding the 2020 U.S. Presidential Election, and the lawsuits filed by Smartmatic against Fox News and former President Trump's allies.
The new allegations further complicate Smartmatic's defamation suits against various pro-Trump figures and media organizations, who have sought to underscore Smartmatic's ties to Venezuela and its involvement in foreign elections as defense in their ongoing legal battles.
Smartmatic has sued Fox Newsas part of a $2.7 billion lawsuit, in which they have demanded a full retraction and apology from the network.
According to Smartmatic spokeswoman Samira Saba, the Florida-based company "has never won a project through any illegal means," and that the claims in the Bautista case are "not related to Smartmatic election security or integrity."