Saturday, March 6, 2021

Against the Kennan Sweepstakes — Tanner Greer

Wishful thinking and grand delusion masquerading as grand strategy.

The Scholar's Stage
Against the Kennan Sweepstakes
Tanner Greer

Del in hand gliding crash

 Uncle Albert has brought a solarium because he thinks it will cure his hangovers. Rodney gives it a try, but Del Boy turns the timer up for a laugh, except that Rodney falls asleep and gets a sunburn. 

In bed at night Rodney is nursing his wounds, when his whife tells him about her friend who owns a hand gliding club, and this gives Rodney an idea about how he can get revenge on Del Boy. He asked his wife if her friend could give Del Boy a 46 birthday surprise hand gliding session, and she says she will ask.

Recently, down the pub Del Boy has been bragging about how he used to go hand gliding and was very good at it. A top sportsman. Rodney's wife manages to set up a 46 birthday surprise hand gliding session for Del Boy. But on the day Del Boy is desperately trying to find a way out, except Rodney has a master plan which he likes. 

Part 2 

Xi Jinping's military tipped to beat US in first war battle over South China Sea

CHINA has been suggested to have the advantage over the US in a potential conflict over the Asia-Pacific, according to a maritime professor.

Professor Lyle Goldstein says that China may even strike first. 

Lyle Goldstein, research professor at the Naval War College's China Maritime Studies Institute, said the US would likely lose a first fight with the People’s Liberation Army (PLA). Washington and Beijing have repeatedly raised tensions with naval drills in disputed Asian waters over the past year, with China enraged over the US’s support of Taiwan and presence in the South China Sea.

Mr Goldstein argued "the situation is actually considerably darker" for US troops beyond the opening rounds of a potential conflict.

He added: “I think China now has adequate forces, including air, missile, electronic warfare, spec ops, naval, undersea and nuclear to likely prevail in the first phase and perhaps in subsequent phases too.”

Daily Express 

How Law Made Neoliberalism — Jedediah Britton-Purdy, Amy Kapczynski, David Singh Grewal

If we are to emerge from this era of crisis, we need legal thinking that operates on fundamentally different presumptions.

Longish but important. Neoliberalism as the basis of a socio-economic systems is grounded in law rather than economics and in a democracy, the law can be changed to suit conditions. 

The authors argue that it's high time to make changes in legal thinking to recognize and deal with power before the adverse consequences overwhelm society and unravel the social fabric even further.

While the article doesn't mention it explicitly, the United States is becoming ungovernable.

Boston Review
How Law Made Neoliberalism
Jedediah Britton-Purdy, Amy Kapczynski, David Singh Grewal

And neoliberalism is not even based on good economics.

Lars P. Syll’s Blog
The problem of reductionism in economics

The permanent income hypothesis
Lars P. Syll | Professor, Malmo University

Geoff Davies

Nor it just law. It's also narrative promoting false ideas and fake news. The narrative has to be changed to reflect reality, too.
The Left Will Never Achieve Its Goals Until It Prioritizes Countering Establishment Propaganda
Caitlin Johnstone

Moon of Alabama
‘Shia Backed’, ‘Iran Backed’ Nonsense And Other Warmongering Journalism

Hyperinflation Pushes Venezuela to Print 1,000,000-Bolivar Bills


Commie paradise turd world nirvana  no real productive output... 

TGA: No progress


Treasury Dept making no significant progress towards their goal of reducing this account balance to $800B by end March....

This week:

Last week:

Same balance.  Usually... when you want an account balance to reduce you have to withdraw MORE than you deposit... usually... except for morons...  in the mean time, there remains almost $1.4T of short term US Treasury security account balances in USD system that nobody wants or needs...

Friday, March 5, 2021

Howard Nicholson - International Trade Deals and the WTO

 How the strong countries set up trade deals to enrich their corporations at the expense of weaker ones. Third world countries are often forced, or tricked, into accepting privatisation, while the West quietly subsidises its own industries which will compete with them. Europeans too are forced to privatise and made to accept dangerous, low quality food because these trade deals have lower regulations. 

Howard Nicholas is a renowned development economist and associate professor of economics at the International Institute of Social Studies (ISS). 

"What is the connection between poverty, human rights and trade?

What is 'free' trade and who profits from it?

What are genuine and bogus solutions to poverty worldwide? 

What is the role of institutions like the WTO?

What is the role of trade treaties such as EPAs, TTIP and TiSA?

To what extent are trade and economics 'war by other means'?"

Howard Nicholas engages, among others, these questions in his lecture.

Part 2 can be found in the description. 

RT — India threatens to jail Facebook, WhatsApp & Twitter staff over refusal to wipe data that ‘undermines national security’ – reports

Indian authorities have reportedly given an ultimatum to US social media platforms, threatening jail time for their local employees if the companies continue to ignore official takedown requests against “damaging” information.

Facebook, WhatsApp and Twitter have each received written notices warning their employees could face arrest should the requests be ignored, in some cases citing specific India-based staff by name, the Wall Street Journal reported on Friday, citing “people familiar” with the matter....
 Freedom of speech runs up against reality — national security as sovereign states define it.
As Big Tech firms seek their way into India’s massive market, the country recently imposed new rules to govern social media platforms, requiring them to appoint India-based representatives to coordinate with law enforcement and government agencies. The restrictions can also compel sites to scrub content the state believes to undermine national security or public order. Ravi Shankar Prasad, the minister of electronics and information technology, argued the rules would force the companies to be “more responsible and more accountable,” after previously blasting sites like Twitter for “double standards” in enforcing their policies.
China just shuts them out.

India threatens to jail Facebook, WhatsApp & Twitter staff over refusal to wipe data that ‘undermines national security’ – reports

The shape of things to come in China — Pepe Escobar

It’s Lianghui (“Two Sessions”) time – the annual ritual of the Beijing leadership. The stars of the show are the top political advisory body, the Chinese People’s Political Consultative Conference; and the traditional delivery of a work report by the Prime Minister to the top legislature, the National People’s Congress (NPC).

The review of the draft outline of China’s 14th Five-Year Plan will proceed all the way to March 15. But in the current juncture, this is not only about 2025 (remember Made in China 2025, which remains in effect). The planning goes long-range towards targets in the Vision 2035 project (achieving “basic socialist modernization”) and even beyond to 2049, the 100th anniversary of the People’s Republic of China...
While the US and its allies fuss, China competes.
The Vineyard of the Saker
The shape of things to come in China
Pepe Escobar

See also

Sputnik International
Chinese Congress Lays Out 6.8% Defense Budget Hike for 2021, Paralleling Economic Growth

C K Voltair - Yellow Peril, Sinophobia and Red Scare - USA is on a Dangerous Path

Anyone who's remotely pro-China on social media is vilified as a Chinese bot or a "Wumao" - a person who supposedly works for 50 cents/hour to spread Chinese propaganda.

 Let's take a look at some illogical American talking points used in the smear campaign against China:

"China is going to collapse soon!"

If Americans really believed this, they would sit back, smile and ignore China.

"China is going to take over the world!"

This paranoid warning usually follows the delusional, "China will collapse" claim. Make up your mind!

"Our free market is the best and China is communist!"

Americans conveniently forget that the US government subsidizes farmers, Big Pharma and the military-industrial-complex with hundreds of billions of dollars annually. Also, when developing nations subsidize Western corporations, it's applauded as smart business; but when developing nations help their domestic firms, it's vilified as socialism or communism.

What's even more interesting is that China now has more publicly traded companies than the US! There's more competition in "communist" China than in the "capitalist" US. For example, the US has one smartphone company (Apple), while China has Huawei, Xiaomi, Oppo, Vivo, ZTE, OnePlus, Transsion, etc.

Finally, comparing the economic growth of the US and China over the last four decades, no one can reasonably say that the US is superior to the China model:

C K Voltair - Yellow Peril, Sinophobia and Red Scare - USA is on a Dangerous Path#

“Blue wave!” wipeout


Entire “blue wave!” rally in “Big Tech!” (QQQ)  completely destroyed as of yesterday... ZERO gains in 6 or 7 months.... and morons are STILL going all around saying “bubble!” and “inflation!”...  same place ... IT.... ALREADY.... WAS...... on Labor Day.... hard to understand these people...

Biden could be stripped of war powers as senators look to rein him in after Syria airstrike - as they claim president's ability to launch military attacks leaves the US on a 'permanent war footing'

 Joe Biden could be stripped of war powers after a bipartisan bill was introduced by senators on Wednesday 

Senators Tim Kaine and Todd Young are calling for the repeal of 1991 and 2002 Authorizations for the Use of Military Force 

The authorizations allow for the use of military force by a US president that have been used to justify years of attacks in the Middle East 

Kaine says they leave the country on a 'permanent war footing'

It comes as Biden is accused of using the authorizations to 'stretch his war powers' after an airstrike in Syria last week

The president was criticized for failing to consult Congress before the strike

Daily Mail

Biden could be stripped of war powers as senators look to rein him in after Syria airstrike - as they claim president's ability to launch military attacks leaves the US on a 'permanent war footing'

Thursday, March 4, 2021

RYO Nakamura - US to build anti-China missile network along first island chain

Exclusive: Indo-Pacific Command requests to double spending in fiscal 2022

Billions of dollars for new missiles to encircle China. For Washington elites, military is the only option to bully and contain China’s rise. There are no plans for fixing the US economy.

What happened to good ol' capitalism and competition, which the US says it champions?

WASHINGTON -- The U.S. will bolster its conventional deterrence against China, establishing a network of precision-strike missiles along the so-called first island chain as part of $27.4 billion in spending to be considered for the Indo-Pacific theater over the next six years, Nikkei has learned.

They form the core proposals of the Pacific Deterrence Initiative that the U.S. Indo-Pacific Command has submitted to Congress and Nikkei has reviewed.

"The greatest danger to the future of the United States continues to be an erosion of conventional deterrence," the document said. "Without a valid and convincing conventional deterrent, China is emboldened to take action in the region and globally to supplant U.S. interests. As the Indo-Pacific's military balance becomes more unfavorable, the U.S. accumulates additional risk that may embolden adversaries to unilaterally attempt to change the status quo."

Nikkie Asia

US to build anti-China missile network along first island chain

BRICS — Russia Triples Gas Supplies to China Via Power of Siberia Pipeline

Russia’s energy major Gazprom said on Monday that it had pumped more gas to China in February via the Power of Siberia pipeline than it had initially planned, more than tripling supplies compared to the same month last year.

“The export of gas to China through the Power of Siberia gas pipeline continues to grow. Supplies regularly exceed our daily contractual obligations. The actual monthly volume of supplies in February is 3.2 times more than in February 2020,” Gazprom said in a statement.

The 3,000km (1,864 mile) cross-border pipeline started official deliveries of Russian natural gas to China in 2019. The so-called eastern route’s capacity is 61 billion cubic meters of gas per year, including 38 billion cubic meters for export. Last year, Gazprom supplied 4.1 billion cubic meters of gas to China via the Power of Siberia. It plans to boost exports by an additional six billion cubic meters.

Russia Triples Gas Supplies to China Via Power of Siberia Pipeline

Also at BRICS
China has pledged to provide nearly half a billion doses of the COVID-19 vaccine to about 45 countries and is ignoring Washington’s provocative charges that it is using vaccines to diplomatize and expand its influence through soft power initiatives. According to the Financial Times newspaper, the U.S. is developing a plan with QUAD allies - Japan, India and Australia – to distribute vaccines globally to hamper Beijing's efforts to expand its influence. The plan is being led by the White House's Indo-Pacific policy coordinator, Kurt Campbell, who reportedly met with ambassadors from QUAD member countries.

Considering the persistence of COVID-19 in some countries, in December last year Beijing promised Southeast Asian and African countries that they would have priority when the vaccines manufactured nationally by China were ready for distribution. Despite Washington's accusations, Beijing denies that its “vaccine diplomacy comes with costs.” A spokesman for the Chinese Foreign Ministry said that China considers the vaccine a “global public good.”

Wang Huiyao, president of the Center for China and Globalization, a Beijing-based think tank, commented: “I don't see any connection in that […]. China should do more to help other countries because it is doing well.”

Pavlina Tcherneva – Guaranteeing the Right to Decent Work


Brave New Europe
Pavlina Tcherneva – Guaranteeing the Right to Decent Work
Matthew D. Rose

TASS — Putin says Internet can destroy society if it does not follow moral guidelines

"We have had a lot of discussions about certain restrictions on the Internet, but the Internet has already penetrated every sphere of our lives and for the most part, it should follow not only formal laws and legal rules, but the moral guidelines of society that we live in as well," Putin said. "Otherwise, society will destroy itself from within," he stressed.

The president said that he wants the majority of citizens to understand this danger for the country’s future. "Because if there isn’t such a thing, they will stir things up for us from the inside," he said.…
China figured this out long ago.

Putin says Internet can destroy society if it does not follow moral guidelines

See also

Just another iteration in the unfolding of WWIII (which began immediately after WWII, and was in fact planned toward the end of WWII).

Sputnik International
West Has Launched Large-Scale Campaign to Support Russia's Non-Systemic Opposition, Russian MFA Says

See also

Both pro- and anti-war voices have stated that the U.S. is on the cusp of entering a second Cold War, and a new Gallup poll suggests that the groundwork for such a conflict has already been laid.

After Years of Propaganda, American Views of Russia and China Hit Historic Lows
Alan Macleod

See also

Gorbachev calls on Russian, US leaders to renounce nuclear war

Oilprice — Oil Soars As OPEC+ Sources Suggest No Production Increase

The U.S. oil benchmark, WTI Crude, jumped early on Thursday to above $64 a barrel, soaring by more than 5 percent, after OPEC+ sources began telling reporters that the coalition may be close to agreeing not to increase their collective oil production in April. WTI Crude prices were surging by 5.06% at $64.21 as of 11:18 a.m. ET on Thursday. Brent Crude prices jumped above $67 per barrel, to $67.17, up by 5.10%, after OPEC+ sources started to leak insights from the ongoing OPEC+ ministerial meeting.…
Oil Soars As OPEC+ Sources Suggest No Production Increase
Tsvetana Paraskova

See also at Oilprice

Resource Nationalism Becomes Major Threat For Oil Companies, Miners

Sputnik — China Development Bank Backs $62bn Loan Scheme For Mainland Chipmakers Amid US-China Trade Tensions

China Development Bank (CBD) has pledged financing for key emerging technologies in China via a 400bn yuan ($62bn) loan scheme, the South China Morning Post (SCMP) and others reported on Thursday.

China's State Council pledged $1.4tn in May last year to decouple from US emerging technologies and develop domestic artificial intelligence, green tech, energy infrastructure, 5G, transport and numerous other projects.

Dean Baker — The New York Times Has not Heard of China’s (or Russia’s) Vaccines

China and Russia are whopping the West in the Global South. NYT ignores.

See also

Dances with Bears
John Helmer

New Great Recession data suggest Congress should go big to spur a broad-based, sustained U.S. economic recovery — Austin Clemens

Will Biden repeat Obama's mistake and undershoot?

WCEG — The Equitablog
New Great Recession data suggest Congress should go big to spur a broad-based, sustained U.S. economic recovery
Austin Clemens

See also
Biden’s stimulus is not the stuff of economic revolution—it’s a mix of common sense and keeping the lights on. And the fundamental thinking behind the stimulus approach reflects a continuation of neoliberal policies of the past 40 years; instead of advancing broader social programs that could uplift the population, the solutions are predicated on improving individual purchasing power and family circumstances. Such a vision of society as a collection of enterprising individuals is a hallmark of the neoliberal policy formula—which, as the stimulus bill is about to make clear, is still prevalent within the Democratic and the Republican parties. This attention to individual purchasing power promises to be the basis for bipartisan agreement over the next four years.

The reality is that social programs on health care and education, and a new era of labor and banking regulation, would put the wider society on sounder feet than a check for $1,400....
Naked Capitalism
Bad Stimulus: Government Payments to Individuals Are a Terrible Way to Solve America’s Structural Economic Problems
Albena Azmanova, an associate professor of politics at the University of Kent’s Brussels School of International Studies and author of Capitalism on Edge: How Fighting Precarity Can Achieve Radical Change Without Crisis or Utopia(2020), and Marshall Auerback, a researcher at the Levy Economics Institute of Bard College, a fellow of Economists for Peace and Security, and a regular contributor to Economy for All, a project of the Independent Media Institute. Produced by Economy for All, a project of the Independent Media Institute

Lenders are flush with cash!


“Banks flush with reserves to lend out!”... (LOL nothing has changed)...

Murdoch & Morrison vs the ABC

 Jack Ma got brought in for a pep talk, because his new financial scheme could have harmed the Chinese economy if it loaded it with too much private debt.

Jamil Anderlini, of the FT, wrote this article below, but he doesn't understand the context and thinks it's just big bad government, the CPC. But why should wealthy individuals be allowed to wreck our economies and societies for private gain?

Libertarian freedom is everyone else's enslavement. 

Jack Ma personifies the contradiction of China’s ideology

The Communist party system needs entrepreneurs but curtails anyone who becomes too powerful

Jack Ma personifies the contradiction of China’s ideology

Rupert Murdoch is out to destroy the ABC, so he can replace it with his personal nonsense. He should be brought in by the authorities, given a pep talk, and he made to pay all his taxes, and all the other taxes his companies owe. 

Murdoch and Morrison v the ABC

Below, Michael Hudson describes how the financial sector has loaded our economy with too much private debt, so that now our society is crumbling. The Chinese government was never going to allow this to happen to their society. 

Debt and Power - Michael Hudson 

Wednesday, March 3, 2021

Bill Mitchell — It isn’t just like household debt!

See this Report from the Corporate Europe Observatory (February 2, 2021) – Vaccine scarcity: how the EU’s appeasement of Big Pharma damages COVID-19 response.

They sought information through FOI processes from the European Commission, which they documented in this report – Power and profit during a pandemic – why the pharmaceutical industry needs more scrutiny not less (September 21, 2020).

They concluded then that:

In a pandemic the pharmaceutical industry is hailed as a saviour; yet the industry is using the crisis to lock in its problematic, profit-maximising model. Pushing for public money with no-strings-attached, and stronger monopoly patent rules, the industry’s wish-list could restrict access to COVID-19 drugs and vaccines, prolonging the pandemic in the name of profit.

No surprises there, which is why we need nationalised pharmaceutical facilities.

The most recent CEO article reports the refusal of the Commission to disclose anything relevant to the public, including the “names of the members of the Joint Negotiation Team” (mentioned above).

The conclusion is that corporate cabal which is the EU is doing what corporate cabals do, cooperate with other corporate cabals to generate profits and to hell with the rest of us....

This post covers a lot of other ground. 

Bill Mitchell – billy blog
It isn’t just like household debt!
Bill Mitchell | Professor in Economics and Director of the Centre of Full Employment and Equity (CofFEE), at University of Newcastle, NSW, Australia

My new podcast episode is out.

The U.S. Grid Isn’t Ready For A Major Shift To Renewables Irina Slav

This [US electrical grid] is one massive system, and the sources that feed it electricity have become increasingly diversified. And while the shortage of natural gas was a big reason for the power outages in Texas, it was certainly not a shortage of gas that caused the blackouts in California last summer during a heatwave. Grid reliability has come to the fore because the decarbonization of electricity generation is not all fun, games, and zero-emission power.

The U.S. grid, as it is now, cannot support the massive shift to low-carbon power generation, Westhaven Power says. Operators need better control of regional grids to be able to anticipate dangerous situations like the ones in Texas and California, but obtaining it would become trickier with more intermittent wind and solar feeding the grid, the utility explains.

"What events in Texas and California demonstrate is the shortcomings of having highly-centralised power systems and the true value of resilience and flexibility in our energy grids, a value that is going to become even more vital as we continue to transition to renewable energy," says Dr. Toby Gill, the chief executive of UK-based climate tech startup Intelligent Power Generation....
Resiliency is back in vogue.
"Reliability and resilience – even in the face of extreme events – is achieved through diversity, redundancy, and modularization. Co-locating energy supply with demand through microgrids and other DERs [distributed energy resources] is an important step in preventing widespread crises like this in the future," according to Mark Feasel, Smart Grid president, Schneider Electric North America.

"In both cases [Texas and California], the strain could have been reduced with distributed resources, such as batteries and solar, as well as demand response tools, like smart thermostats with utility control," says K.C. Boyce, vice president of human insights firm Escalent's energy division. "However, Texas has limited distributed resources and demand response, and while California has lots of distributed resources, it doesn't have a good way of coordinating those resources, nor does it really have demand response tools to call on."...

Neoliberal "competition" in the vaccine world.

Big Pharma is fighting for tight control over Covid-19 vaccine production, limiting availability worldwide while reaping billions.


They [Oxford University] Pledged to Donate Rights to Their COVID Vaccine, Then Sold Them to Pharma
Jay Hancock

Teaching Current Monetary Policy — Timothy Taylor

Catching up.

Conversable Economist
Teaching Current Monetary Policy
Timothy Taylor | Managing editor of the Journal of Economic Perspectives, based at Macalester College in St. Paul, Minnesota

Is the U.S. Going the Way of Afghanistan? — James Bovard

 The US is now deeply divided ideologically, which implies socially and politically also, since the two halves of the population see the world entirely differently, giving rise to "alternative facts."

The upshot of this condition is the necessity of one side controlling the narrative to capture the middle, which constitutes the swing votes.

A foundational issue at present is the legitimacy of the government. This post is about that and it outlines the conservative stance for the 2020 presidential election being illegitimate. 

Whether one agree with the position or not, or even who may be correct, it is important to understand the reasoning behind it as the basis for "stop the steal." 

Former president Trump continues to assert that he won the election, and this post explains the legal basis for this claim. The further claim is that these issues were never properly litigated in court.

You decide.

Whatever, some states, including Iowa where I live, are tightening down on the election laws making it more difficult to vote by shortening the period of early voting and restricting the procedure regarding absentee ballots, changing the conditions that prevailed in the recent election, ostensibly owing to the emergency conditions resulting from the pandemic.

Ironically, the US has managed to create domestic conditions resembling those it is trying to create in targets for regime change. Moreover, some are projecting this as the result of inference by US adversaries rather than being homegrown.

Is the U.S. Going the Way of Afghanistan?
James Bovard

Imperialism Is Capitalism’s Life Support System: Notes From The Edge Of The Narrative Matrix — Caitlin Johnstone

Capitalism is collectivism in denial. Money only works the way it works and exists the way it exists because we all collectively agree to pretend that those made-up, imaginary conceptual constructs are real. The collective is free to change that collective agreement at any time.

Capitalism is collectivism. If the collective wants to switch to another form of collectivism that doesn’t let people starve and die for not having enough imaginary numbers in their bank accounts, the collective is free to change the rules of its collective improvisation.

Becoming more conservative as you age isn’t maturity, it’s an admission that your values are based entirely on securing your own net worth....
Imperialism Is Capitalism’s Life Support System: Notes From The Edge Of The Narrative Matrix
Caitlin Johnstone

"History 2.0" - Blurb by Jeffrey Sachs — Frank Li

Short comment on Frank Li's new book.

"History 2.0" - Blurb by Jeffrey Sachs
Jeffrey D. Sachs, public policy analyst and former director of The Earth Institute at Columbia University, where he holds the title of University Professor

The ideological function of economic theories and models — Andri W. Stahel

... economists seem to be undeterred by these new understandings brought to physics or even by the blow brought to Newton’s mechanics by 20th-century quantum physics and Einstein’s relativity. They continue to stick to classical mechanics as if nothing had changed in the way physician understand the physical world. Nor are they bothered by the way other social and political sciences came to understand the social world; or how in neurosciences and psychology, the understanding of the working of the human brain is undoubtedly far-removed from the assumption of “rational behaviour” economists like to base their models on. As have neoclassic economists never seriously asked themselves whether the mathematical equations resulting from leaving aside all potential friction and nuisances while establishing models of the economic reality bear any meaning describing actual reality and real-world events.…
Real-World Economics Review Blog
The ideological function of economic theories and models

extract from 

real-world economics review, issue no. 94
Andri W. Stahel, Universitat Popular del Baix Montseny, UPBM, Barcelona, Spain

See also

Lars P. Syll’s Blog
General equilibrium illusions
Lars P. Syll | Professor, Malmo University

Lars P. Syll— MMT perspective on Biden’s $1.9-trillion big spend

The size of public debt and deficits is not — as already Abba Lerner argued with his ‘functional finance’ theory in the 1940s — a policy objective. The size of public debt and deficits are what they are when we try to fulfil our basic economic objectives — full employment and price stability.

Governments can spend whatever amount of money they want. That does not mean that MMT says they ought to — that’s something our politicians have to decide. No MMTer denies that too much of government spendings can be inflationary. What is questioned is that government deficits necessarily is inflationary.
Lars P. Syll’s Blog
MMT perspective on Biden’s $1.9-trillion big spend
Lars P. Syll | Professor, Malmo University

Bill Mitchell — Australian national accounts – second quarter of strong growth but still below where economy was a year ago

Coming off a low base. That is how to view the latest data release from the Australian Bureau of Statistics of the – Australian National Accounts: National Income, Expenditure and Product, December 2020 (released March 3, 2020). It shows that the Australian economy grew by 3.1 per cent in the December-quarter after growing by 3.4 per cent in the September-quarter. But the economy is still 1.1 per cent smaller than it was this time last year. The other thing to take from the data is that it once again confirms that nations that took the virus elimination strategy have done the best in economic terms compared to those nation which resisted tight lockdowns and other restrictions and are still enduring high infection rates and stalled economies. Household Consumption expenditure rose strongly as opportunities to spend increased and disposable income recovered somewhat. How long this considerable rebound can continue is another question. With the government fiscal support due to end soon and the base now higher, the coming quarters will not be as robust. And remember that the economy is still 1.1 per cent smaller and the labour market is still struggling and the Government’s fiscal support will still be required in certain sectors, which are still unable to achieve recovery (arts, tourism)....
Bill Mitchell – billy blog
Australian national accounts – second quarter of strong growth but still below where economy was a year ago
Bill Mitchell | Professor in Economics and Director of the Centre of Full Employment and Equity (CofFEE), at University of Newcastle, NSW, Australia

Budget Day 2021 — NeilW

It’s budget day here in the UK, and traditionally that means commentators write what they would do instead. Here’s the MMT view.
New Wayland
Budget Day 2021

Modern Monetary Theory and the Expansion: Ebook Pre-Order — Brian Romanchuk

My latest book Modern Monetary Theory and the Expansion will be released on March 11, 2021 in e-book formats. It is available for pre-order at Amazon, Kobo, Apple, and others to be added. The paperback edition will be available in about a month....
Bond Economics
Modern Monetary Theory and the Expansion: Ebook Pre-Order
Brian Romanchuk

US Treasury account back over $1.5T


This account balance was planned on Feb 1st to be reduced by $800b by end of March... so ofc they have only reduced it by $100b in 4 weeks... if they are still planning (moron journos? Bueller?) on hitting the $800b balance by end March then they going to have to reduce it by the remaining $700b in 4 weeks...

Warren urged U.S. regulators to reject banks’ requests to ease capital requirements

You knew this was going to happen.... "screw the banksters!".... now we have to see if Dems let her win this one...

Tuesday, March 2, 2021

China Never Sleeps - The Rise of Megacities


Sputnik — Huawei's AppGallery Rivals Google, Apple With 530m Users, Major Growth in 2020 Despite US Trade Bans

"Outcompeting China."

Sputnik International
Huawei's AppGallery Rivals Google, Apple With 530m Users, Major Growth in 2020 Despite US Trade Bans

Biden's Trade Agenda Reflects More Hardline Stance Against China in Rules, Experts Say

China Aims for Tech Independence Amid Looming Cut-Throat Race With US

Zero Hedge
Futures Spooked After China Says "Very Worried" About Bubbles In US, European Markets
Tyler Durden

Aperture - The Real Meaning of Life

 One day our Sun will burn out and  expand to devour the Earth.

Then our galaxy will burn out too, and all the other galaxies, after which the universe will die.

All the stars will become black holes and evaporate to nothing.

Everything gone.

It's sad! 

Noam Chomsky - Privatisation

 In China the state industries performed so well during Covid that the CPC decided to increase their influence.

“That’s the standard technique of privatization: defund, make sure things don’t work, people get angry, you hand it over to private capital.”

— Noam Chomsky

Monday, March 1, 2021

Bill Mitchell — Were are undermining our futures by deliberately wasting our youth

What simple measures might we use to see whether a system is working or not? Well that depends on the objective of the system. For me, one of the worst things that can happen in a social context is a capitalist system is involuntary unemployment because work is intrinsic to our beings. From the time we crawled out of the slime we have had to transform nature in order to survive. That reality goes to the heart of human existence and gives us purpose and builds our sense of network and cooperation and giving. I know all the arguments – this is a filthy capitalist system and why would we want people to be wage slaves – I am older now. I have been a left-winger all my life. I heard these arguments decades ago. And until those revolutionary armies that are apparently hiding out in the suburbs arms themselves and appear in the streets, I am thinking of the actual societies we live in and have to make the best of. We would spend our whole life times talking about revolution while workers around the world are being made to bear the costs of the failing neoliberal system....
Bill Mitchell – billy blog
Were are undermining our futures by deliberately wasting our youth
Bill Mitchell | Professor in Economics and Director of the Centre of Full Employment and Equity (CofFEE), at University of Newcastle, NSW, Australia

See also
There’s Only One News Story, Repeating Over And Over Again
Caitlin Johnstone

Lars P. Syll — Keynes on models and economics

Keeper quote. The implication is that organic modeling is more applicable to economics and other social sciences than mechanistic modeling owing to the nature of the subject matter.

Lars P. Syll’s Blog
Keynes on models and economics
Lars P. Syll | Professor, Malmo University

Sunday, February 28, 2021

The Universe Is Just Trying To See Itself — Caitlin Johnstone

The Universe Is Just Trying To See Itself
Caitlin Johnstone

Only Fools and Horses - Del Shows Off His Shooting Skills

They are wheelers and dealers who live on a council estate. Rodney, the younger brother, has met a nice girl and has been invited to her father's dinner party. Del Boy, the older one, sees an opportunity to meet some of the top brass and make contacts. 

Why You Should Stop Using Your Android Messages App

 I'm quite into Delta Chat now, although it's basic, like you can only send one picture at a time, but it's still in development, so hopefully it will improve.

There’s a serious issue that impacts hundreds of millions of Android users worldwide—one that should have been flagged by the huge backlash that suddenly hit WhatsApp in January. But it wasn’t, it gets surprisingly little attention, even though it puts you and your private information at risk. Here’s what you need to know.


Why You Should Stop Using Your Android Messages 

Why UK Pensions are Worst in the Developed World

 As a percentage of average earnings, the UK government pays out 29 per cent, putting it at the bottom of a table which is led by the Netherlands, which pays 100.6 per cent, Portugal, which offers 94 per cent, and Italy, which gives 93.2 per cent.

The UK is joined at the bottom of the list by Japan, Poland and Mexico, but all these countries still pay better state pensions, the report by the group of developed nations showed.


Why UK Pensions are Worst in the Developed World

Saudi Arabia is medieval, cruel and an absolute tyranny — Pat Lang

"Our guys."

Sic Semper Tyrannis
Saudi Arabia is medieval, cruel and an absolute tyranny.
Col. W. Patrick Lang, US Army (ret.)

At the Defense Intelligence Agency, Lang was the Defense Intelligence Officer (DIO) for the Middle East, South Asia and counter-terrorism, and later, the first Director of the Defense Humint Service. At the DIA, he was a member of the Defense Senior Executive Service. He participated in the drafting of National Intelligence Estimates. From 1992 to 1994, all the U.S. military attachés worldwide reported to him. During that period, he also briefed President George H. W. Bush at the White House, as he had during Operation Desert Storm.

He was also the head of intelligence analysis for the Middle East for seven or eight years at that institution. He was the head of all the Middle East and South Asia analysis in DIA for counter-terrorism for seven years. For his service in the DIA, Lang received the Presidential Rank Award of Distinguished Executive. — Wikipedia

See also

The Hill
See also

Another wrist-slap.

Zero Hedge
Biden Admits He Won't Sanction MbS Simply Because Saudis Remain "Our Allies"
Tyler Durden

Bitcoin cannot replace the banks

 Cryptocurrency hopes are based on a misunderstanding of how money is created

The bitcoiners think that the government creates all the money, but it is the regulated commercial banks which make most of our money.

Holding any asset in the hope that it becomes money is, to be sure, a long-term investment strategy. But it also shows a flawed understanding of how dollars work, and who creates them now. Most of what currently functions as money in the US and any developed economy does not come from the government. It comes from commercial banks. Banks do not just hold money, or transfer it. They create it.

Bitcoin is turning out to be a good way to reinforce the system we already have. There’s a lot about this system that functions poorly. The supply of credit money can be unstable, as banks stop making loans in a downturn, right when people need them the most. There is little incentive to extend cheap credit to people who need small loans. But there isn’t much, so far, that Bitcoin seems to have done to fix these things, and it’s not at all clear how it will.


Saturday, February 27, 2021

Putin, crusaders and barbarians — Pepe Escobar


The Vineyard of the Saker
Putin, crusaders and barbarians
Pepe Escobar

See also

In my view, Amnesty rightly denied to recognize Navalny as a "prisoner of conscience" since his past behavior and previous statements reveal that the man has no conscience. He is an opportunist rather than a defender of rights.

But more significantly from the political standpoint, polling backed by a record of  poor performance in elections in which he participated show that he has very little support in Russia, while Putin has approval numbers that Western leaders can only dream about. The West is betting on the wrong horse.

Amnesty, and the Failure of the Navalny Revolution
Paul Robinson | Professor, Graduate School of Public and International Affairs at the University of Ottawa


Biden’s First Foreign Policy Speech Vows Forever Wars
Brian Berletic

Disclosure: "My name is Brian Berletic and for several years I have run the alternative news blog, "Land Destroyer" under the pen name 'Tony Cartalucci.'" 

Berletic is an anti-imperialist.



Art Degree Summers digging in.... as he should....

Treasury plan


This is what they last said they are going to do:

Next quarter they are estimating $393B of additional USD savings but are only planning on providing an additional $95b of UST securities accounts ..... and zombie morons are currently thinking “hey! what if China doesn’t lend us the money!?!?”..... FTR.

How does one learn from people one disagrees with?


LOL how about you don’t use the dialogic method in the first place that’s how.... you use the scientific method...  

Friday, February 26, 2021

Biden To Let Trump-Era Rule Severely Regulating China Tech "Threats" Take Effect — Tyler Durden

Addressing the feared deep and lasting negative impact on the US economy itself, WSJ explains:
The rule could affect millions of American businesses, according to a Commerce Department estimate, potentially requiring them to get government clearance for purchases and deals involving sophisticated technology with what the regulation calls a "foreign adversary," or face potential unwinding of the deals or other enforcement.
Everything from sophisticated electronics, most especially computer components and iPhones, to camera equipment to vehicles, could potentially be impacted by a web of confusing regulations that could ensue.

Leading the charge against implementing the rule includes IBM, which was quoted in Bloomberg as saying, "By the Commerce Department’s own estimate, this rule would impose many billions of dollars in new compliance costs on millions of U.S. firms, including countless small businesses."...

Outcompeting China? 

Why Joe Biden will continue the US war on Nord Stream 2 till the bitter end — Johanna Ross

As Johanna Ross observes, this is geopolitics and geo-strategy in the style of the grand chessboard on which great powers contend for control of territory. 

What she doesn't point out is the that real objective of the US/UK is first forcing Russia to submit to US/UK imperial rule so that it can use this leverage on China's Western border, along with the Seventh Fleet and bases surrounding China to the east to force China into submission, thereby cement permanent US/UK hegemony as the first truly global empire. 

Why US/UK ? The US is the next iteration of the British Empire, which initiated this global strategy long ago and has been pursuing it since, now as a shadow of the US as a result of the power shift post-WWII.

This grand strategy, of which Russia and China are well aware, is leading inexorably to a new arms race, another cold war, and a high likelihood of WWIII.

In this, the US is taking the lead and bears most of the responsibility. Actions since WWII reveal that the US has little to no sense of responsibility. (Putin: "Do you realize what you have done?")

Why Joe Biden will continue the US war on Nord Stream 2 till the bitter end
Johanna Ross, journalist based in Edinburgh, Scotland.

See also

Backgrounder on geo-strategy.

See also

Consortium News (August 29, 2018)
Back in the (Great) Game: The Revenge of Eurasian Land Powers
Pepe Escobar

Bond Market Panic — Brian Romanchuk

Zombie attack.

Bond Economics
Bond Market Panic
Brian Romanchuk

The EU will choke off Europe's recovery — Thomas Fazi

Popular explanation of currency sovereignty and its implications for the EZ. Plus a Wynne Godley quote.

Thomas Fazi and Bill Mitchell wrote Reclaiming the State together. Fazi is an Italian journalist.

The EU will choke off Europe's recovery
Thomas Fazi



Just because you are paranoid doesn’t mean you’re not being watched..... 

Thursday, February 25, 2021

Andrew Batson — The definitive book on China’s industrial policy is also free

Once an obscure topic, China’s industrial policy now gets attention from heads of state. The entire US-China trade war waged by the Trump administration was, in formal legal terms any way, justified as a response to distorting industrial policy. Understanding industrial policy seems to be a requirement for participating in current intellectual debates about China.

Thankfully, Barry Naughton has written a short and highly readable book, The Rise of China’s Industrial Policy, 1978 to 2020, that explains its history and functioning. Even better, it is available as a free PDF download from the Centro de Estudios China-México at the Universidad Nacional Autónoma de México. Based on a series of lectures, the book has a conversational tone and jargon-free style that is rare for this subject matter, a topic both highly technical and highly politicized....
Andrew Batson's Blog

The Revival Of Russia And The Way Forward — Zamir Awan

Mostly focused on Russian relations with the Muslim world. Russia has good relations with both the Muslim world and Israel even though it is backing Syria and, more modestly, Iran. This is a difficult balancing act that he credits Putin with managing well. It also helps that the Russian Federation is a multi-ethnic and multi-cultural state with good domestic relations and respect for different peoples and traditions.

Under President Putin’s outstanding leadership, Russia has successfully reached out the Muslim World to restore its international influence. The mutual exchange visits by leaders of Saudi Arabia, Turkey, Iran, Egypt and exponentially growing economic and defense collaboration have the potential to shape a new regional and global order.

The Muslim World is enormous, with an estimated population of around two billion; almost every fourth person is a Muslim. There are 57 Muslim countries as sovereign members of the United Nations. They possess a large vote bank and political weightage. The Muslim World is rich in natural resources, with vast reserves of oil, gas, and minerals.

Although possessing colossal potential, but politically divided and yet poor and weak, often coerced by Western World and victimized frequently. It is an excellent opportunity for Russia to avail anti-America sentiments in the Muslim World in the best interest and build deep friendships with the Muslim World....

Wired — China Hijacked an NSA Hacking Tool in 2014—and Used It for Years

Reading the article, it is not known that "China hijacked an NSA hacking tool." While it seems to be the case that a China-based group obtained the tool, it is not known conclusively who originated it or how it was obtained, eg., directly or through another source.

The author of the article is not necessarily responsible for the title. That is an editorial choice. But this seems to be a piece in the pattern of attributing loss of information to Russian and Chinese government hackers based on inconclusive evidence.

How many people either just read the headlines and title, or else buy into sloppy reasoning based on cognitive-affective bias, one wonders.

China Hijacked an NSA Hacking Tool in 2014—and Used It for Years
Andy Greenberg, senior writer for WIRED, covering security, privacy, and information freedom

Economic Civil War — Joel Kotkin

Our national divide is usually cast in terms of ideology, race, climate, and gender. But it might be more accurate to see our national conflict as regional and riven by economic function. The schism is between two ways of making a living, one based in the incorporeal world of media and digital transactions, the other in the tangible world of making, growing, and using real things.
Birth pangs of the transition from the chiefly industrial age, when even agriculture was industrialized, to the digital age, where as many functions as possible are being digitized. In the transition from the agricultural age to the industrial age, agricultural workers were marginalized and replaced by machines. In the digital age, industrial workers are being marginalized and displaced.

This dynamic has become focused on energy and climate change in US policy and politics.

The American Mind
Economic Civil War
Joel Kotkin | Presidential Fellow in Urban Futures at Chapman University and Executive Director for Urban Reform Institute

Why the US Should Pursue Cooperation with China Jeffrey D. Sachs

Cooperation is not cowardice, as American conservatives repeatedly claim. Both the US and China have much to gain from it: peace, expanded markets, accelerated technological progress, the avoidance of a new arms race, progress against COVID-19, a robust global jobs recovery, and a shared effort against climate change.
Like no-brainer. Except the US would have to forego "full-spectrum dominance," which is a step too far, it seems.

And Jeffrey Sachs appears to be under some illusions about President Biden in this regard. It seems to me that he is looking too much at what is said and ignoring what is being done.

Project Syndicate
Why the US Should Pursue Cooperation with China
Jeffrey D. Sachs | Professor of Sustainable Development and Professor of Health Policy and Management at Columbia University, Director of Columbia’s Center for Sustainable Development, and Director of the UN Sustainable Development Solutions Network

When throwing evidence and facts is not enough. How Change Happens in the Humanitarian System — Duncan Green

Got an evidence-based argument? Maybe forget about it. Decision making is rational but there are more factors than evidence-based argument. This is an issue in the dialectic between liberalism and traditionalism. The liberal view of economics is that rationality trumps and rationality is based on economic maximization. Traditionalists may see it otherwise — which is a reason that many votes against their economic interests in favor of other factors they value more.
The panels supported research by ALNAP and others, which has strongly suggested that the use of evidence in humanitarian decision-making is limited, either because consideration of evidence is not an explicit part of the decision-making process, or because decisions are affected by a number of other considerations: politics, resource availability, or security. And, if we think back to the models of change presented in this paper, we should not be surprised if decision-makers are not entirely rational, or if decisions are strongly influenced by politics.

This is not to say that evidence is never used to support change. The meeting also considered a number of examples where the provision of evidence was an important part of the change process and some participants went as far as to suggest that evidence is a necessary, if not a sufficient, condition of change....
Oxfam Blogs — From Poverty to Power
When throwing evidence and facts is not enough. How Change Happens in the Humanitarian System
Duncan Green, strategic adviser for Oxfam GB

This Obscure Energy Treaty Is the Greatest Threat to the Planet You’ve Never Heard Of — Fabian Flues et al

The road to corporate totalitarianism.

Naked Capitalism
This Obscure Energy Treaty Is the Greatest Threat to the Planet You’ve Never Heard Of
Fabian Flues, an adviser on trade and investment policy at Berlin-based PowerShift, Cecilia Olivet, project coordinator with the Economic Justice Programme at the Transnational Institute, and Pia Eberhardt, a researcher and campaigner with the Brussels-based campaign group Corporate Europe Observatory. 
Originally published at openDemocracy

Human nature is no barrier to socialism — Louise O'Shea

Advocates of capitalism would argue that this analysis overlooks the role of individual incentive in socio-economic motivation, productivity, innovation, and risk-taking. On the other hand, there are also good arguments for creating socio-economic systems that integrate individual and social, and competition and cooperation. In addition, "human nature" tends to ignore or deny diversity, among individuals, groups, and societies and their cultures.

The former communist countries are now forced to grapple with these issues in arriving at a new development model that integrates seeming opposites. The present capitalist models are unattractive as exemplars owing to the socio-economic dysfunctionality that is associated with them, e.g., inequality, oligarchy, plutonomy, imperialism, and other asymmetries, as well as socializing negative externality.

That said, the post does raise some important questions and makes some good points.

What is the most successful model presently and what are its pros and cons and how could it be improved. The Scandinavian model was held up in this regard but there has been some retrenchment toward the failed neoliberal model.

Red Flag — a publication of Socialist Alternative
Human nature is no barrier to socialism
Louise O'Shea

Bill Mitchell — Some historical thinking about the Job Guarantee

I noted yesterday that I was appearing at a Seminar via Zoom with my MMT colleague, Pavlina Tcherneva, where we will discuss the concept of a social contract and where Modern Monetary Theory (MMT) fits into that, especially in the context of our idea of employment guarantees. The seminar – MMT and the new social contract: Lessons from Covid-19 – will be held on Saturday, February 27, 2021, from 10:00 Australian Eastern Daylight time and you can find details of how you can participate – HERE. I was thinking about what I would contribute to this workshop and rather than just rehearse the standard discussion about the Job Guarantee I have thought going back to square one would be a good place to start. This is especially a good thing to do, given that I increasingly see progressive people embrace the concept but try to do ‘too much’ with it. That is, place too much emphasis on it, especially in the context of Green Transitions. Pouring all our activist and political energy into getting a Job Guarantee up is not a sensible strategy for reasons I will explain. Second, a lot of critics, especially those who talk big on Twitter about ‘Bill Mitchell wanting people to starve’, clearly haven’t gone back to understand the roots of the concept and where it fits in. So today, I want to further clarify some significant issues that arise when both sides – pro and con – come in contact with the concept of employment buffer stocks for the first time and think they know all about.

As a matter of fact, I always applaud initiatives that propose to introduce a buffer stock of jobs and use it to replace the current unemployment buffer stock approach that devastates the lives of people and wastes human potential.

But I caution against making these initiatives out to be ‘game changers’....
Bill Mitchell – billy blog
Some historical thinking about the Job Guarantee
Bill Mitchell | Professor in Economics and Director of the Centre of Full Employment and Equity (CofFEE), at University of Newcastle, NSW, Australia

Modern Monetary Theory and the Recovery: "Soon" Brian Romanchuk

Modern Monetary Theory and the Recovery is in its final formatting stages. It is an introduction to Modern Monetary Theory (MMT), but directed at a particular subject: why has growth been sub-par in recent decades, and what could be done differently?

In addition to covering policy discussions, there is an overview of what MMT says, and what it does not. It also discusses many good faith critiques of MMT. There is a great deal of misinformation floating around with respect to MMT, and so the objective is to return to what the theory actually says....
Bond Economics
Modern Monetary Theory and the Recovery: "Soon"
Brian Romanchuk

History of Money (Part I) | From cowries to cryptocurrency — Amol Agrawal

This year has started with another frenzy in cryptocurrencies with Bitcoin prices crossing $50,000. Some countries such as China are close to starting their central bank digital currencies (CBDC). In India, the government is planning to issue a Bill that defines digital cryptocurrencies more clearly and the Reserve Bank of India is studying the scope of a CBDC.

To better understand these developments, a look back at history and the evolution of money is warranted — ideas, they say, go around in circles. What is seen as a novel idea today, usually has a past, and is often just packaged differently.

In the first of a three-part series, we trace how the concept of money evolved down the ages....
In 1835, the Coinage Act was passed which unified coinage across India. In 1861, the British crown decided to unify and monopolise the banknotes as well. The Paper Currency Act was passed which took away issuance of banknote powers from both private and presidency banks. However, unlike their home country, the British neither gave this function to an existing bank nor set up a new entity. They managed the issuance within the government.
Money Control | Opinion
History of Money (Part I) | From cowries to cryptocurrency
Amol Agrawal, Assistant Professor of Economics, Ahmedabad University

Future Monetary Theory — Trevor Jackson

 A professor of economic history critiques MMT. 

MMT doesn't go far enough. It remains embedded in the present system, which itself is the root of the socio-economic problem the world faces. While Trevor Jackson agrees that MMT is descriptive of the present system, it remains too faithful to it to address emergent challenges. 

I have been saying this for some time but for other reasons having to do with the world system. It's past time to start thinking seriously about economic and political economy on the basis of the world system and changing world order, e.g., resulting from the growth of inequality, decolonization, and the increasing importance of systemic integration that comes along with globalization through technological innovation, the pace of which is increasing.

Future Monetary Theory
Trevor Jackson | assistant professor of economic history at George Washington University

Renate Pore — Deficit is not democracy's 'Achilles' heel' (Opinion)

Articulate defense of MMT against debt phobia and deficit hysteria based on The Deficit Myth.

Charleston Gazette-Mail | Opinion
Renate Pore: Deficit is not democracy's 'Achilles' heel' (Opinion)

Watch "As leaks expose UK op to 'weaken' Russia, suppression of Grayzone reporting backfires"

 After The Grayzone's Max Blumenthal reported on newly leaked documents exposing a massive UK government propaganda campaign against Russia, Twitter added an unprecedented warning label that the material "may have been obtained through hacking." Although Twitter may have intended to restrict the article, the warning had the opposite effect: it quickly went viral. 

Max Blumenthal and Aaron Maté discuss the suppression effort and the damning UK government leaks at the heart of it. After years of fear-mongering about Russian interference in Western democracies, these UK government files expose a sprawling propaganda effort that explicitly aims to "weaken" Russia. The documents reveal that this propaganda campaign has also enlisted major media outlets Reuters and the BBC, as well as the NATO member state-funded website Bellingcat.

Wednesday, February 24, 2021

The U.S. Air Force Just Admitted The F-35 Stealth Fighter Has Failed

The protection racket continues.

But over 20 years of R&D, that lightweight replacement fighter got heavier and more expensive as the Air Force and lead contractor Lockheed Martin packed it with more and more new technology.

Yes, we’re talking about the F-35. The 25-ton stealth warplane has become the very problem it was supposed to solve. And now America needs a new fighter to solve that F-35 problem, officials said.


The U.S. Air Force Just Admitted The F-35 Stealth Fighter Has Failed

Fed systems down


Says it was an “operational problem”... ie not a technical problem.....  

Nobody wants to receive reserve assets?  Hmmmmmmm...  

$70B reserves to depositories yesterday:

Perhaps destabilization starting.... 

My new podcast episode is out.

War Watch

MintPress News
What Planet Is NATO Living On?
Medea Benjamin

“We want a regime change in Russia”
Maurizio Blondet

Putin says Russia thwarted the activity of hundreds of foreign agents nationwide

Sputnik International
Putin: Information Campaign Exists Abroad to Undermine Russia's Achievements in Medicine

Sputnik International
US Vows 'Mix of Tools Seen and Unseen' Against Russia for Its Alleged Involvement in SolarWinds Hack

Sputnik International
US B-1 Bombers Arrive in Norway for First Time

Global Research

Sputnik International
Russia's Lavrov Calls on US to Eliminate Nuclear Weapons Sites Abroad, Says They Violate NPT

Intel Today
Salisbury Incident — Was ‘Novichok Killer’ Driving License Photoshopped by Bellingcat? [UPDATE — Bellingcat paid by UK FCO to post Russia Fake News]
Ludwig De Braeckeleer
Nahia Sanzo,

Spiegel Online
Russia: The Architect of Putin's Purported Palace Comments on Alexei Navalny's Film
Christian Esch

France, Canada, UK Send Warships To South China Sea To Assist U.S., Not Spread Influence In Former Colonies

The American Conservative
Writing Our Own Foreign Policy Destiny
Daniel Larison

Researchers identify mechanism by which exercise strengthens bones and immunity

 Scientists at the Children's Medical Center Research Institute at UT Southwestern (CRI) have identified the specialized environment, known as a niche, in the bone marrow where new bone and immune cells are produced. The study, published in Nature, also shows that movement-induced stimulation is required for the maintenance of this niche, as well as the bone and immune-forming cells that it contains. Together, these findings identify a new way that exercise strengthens bones and immune function.

Medical Press

Researchers identify mechanism by which exercise strengthens bones and immunity

Zero Hedge — Hong Kong Market Tumbles After "Shock" Transaction Tax Hike To Pay For Government Handouts

While Hong Kong has been an outlier when it comes to taxing stock transactions, with major markets such as the U.S. and regional rival Singapore refraining, HK's action may prompt more politicians into acting to transfer some capital from the financial sector to the people. Indeed, talk of implementing a tax on financial transactions has recently been rekindled by some Democrats in the U.S. after the recent trading frenzy in GameStop Corp. shares.

Sameness is Just Wrong — Peter Radford

Nothing new but it's worth restating from time to time. Ergodicity for one thing, simplicity for another.
There is something truly odd about any economist who lives wholly in the world of equilibrium. Truly odd. Just think of what they have to assume to get there
The Radford Free Press
Sameness is Just Wrong
Peter Radford


Lars P. Syll’s Blog
The leap of generalization
Lars P. Syll | Professor, Malmo University

Nikkei — US And Allies To Build ‘China-free’ Tech Supply Chain

The economic and military pressure on China and Russia is leading to a military alliance and technology sharing. "Competition." Exactly the result anticipated and looked forward to by the military-industrial complex that feeds off hostility.

US And Allies To Build ‘China-free’ Tech Supply Chain
Taisei Hoyama and Yu Nakamura, Nikkei staff writers

See also
With his plan to build a concert of democracies to contain China, US President Joe Biden is making a grave mistake. The US and China should each be doing their part to protect the global commons, not competing for global dominance.
This is all about preserving Western imperial hegemony when the current dynamic is decolonization and integrating liberalism and traditionalism. 

As always, follow the power and money. 

Project Syndicate
How to Cooperate with China
Andrew Sheng, Distinguished Fellow of the Asia Global Institute at the University of Hong Kong, a member of the UNEP Advisory Council on Sustainable Finance, and a former chairman of the Hong Kong Securities and Futures Commission; and Xiao Geng, Chairman of the Hong Kong Institution for International Finance, and professor and Director of the Research Institute of Maritime Silk-Road at Peking University HSBC Business School


Sputnik International
India OKs $1Bn Scheme to Attract IT Hardware Manufacturers From China, US & Other Nations

Michael Hudson Discusses the Economic Winds of [Non] Change Under Biden on Radical Imagination — Interview

 Michael Hudson interview with transcript.

Naked Capitalism
Michael Hudson Discusses the Economic Winds of [Non] Change Under Biden on Radical Imagination
Yves Smith

Bill Mitchell — Enforced poverty and torture for the victims of government policy failure – welcome to modern Australia

My Wednesday blog post with a few snippets. Don’t forget to enrol in our MOOC which begins next week. Also, some news from Britain that shows once again the British Labour Party has the gun aimed straight at its foot. And some comments on yesterday’s Australian government decision to increase the unemployment benefit by $25 per week and claiming this was appropriate – when it still means the recipients are $163 per week below the accepted poverty line. Enforced poverty by a government that refuses to create enough jobs and then punishes the victims of the policy failure. This all amounts to War and we can sing along to that after getting angry about the rest.
Webinar – MMT and the new social contract: Lessons from Covid-19 – Coming this Weekend!

I will be sharing the stage with my good friend Dr Pavlina Tcherneva and talking about how MMT economists talk about the social contract.

We will be considering the role of the Job Guarantee and lots of other things.

Go – HERE – for details about enrolment and participation.

It will run on Saturday, February 27, 2021, from 10:00 Australian Eastern Daylight time.
Bill Mitchell – billy blog
Enforced poverty and torture for the victims of government policy failure – welcome to modern Australia
Bill Mitchell | Professor in Economics and Director of the Centre of Full Employment and Equity (CofFEE), at University of Newcastle, NSW, Australia