Lambert and I, and many readers, agree that Ukraine has prompted the worst informational environment ever. We hope readers will collaborate in mitigating the fog of war — both real fog and stage fog — in comments. None of us need more cheerleading and link-free repetition of memes; there are platforms for that. Low-value, link-free pom pom-wavers will be summarily whacked.
And for those who are new here, this is not a mere polite request. We have written site Policies and those who comment have accepted those terms. To prevent having to resort to the nuclear option of shutting comments down entirely until more sanity prevails, as we did during the 2015 Greek bailout negotiations and shortly after the 2020 election, we are going to be ruthless about moderating and blacklisting offenders.
P.S. Also, before further stressing our already stressed moderators, read our site policies:
Please do not write us to ask why a comment has not appeared. We do not have the bandwidth to investigate and reply. Using the comments section to complain about moderation decisions/tripwires earns that commenter troll points. Please don’t do it. Those comments will also be removed if we encounter them.
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Leopard crashes into house and rescued Daily Mirror (SBK)
The consciousness of bees Washington Post (furzy)
At Long Last, Mathematical Proof That Black Holes Are Stable Qanta Magazine
Earth Is Spinning Faster Now Than It Was 50 Years Ago Discover (Dr Kevin)
Solar power opens the door to banking for rural Indians Thomson Reuters Foundation (J-LS)
Streaming Is a Black Hole of Financial Loss The Bulwark (furzy)
Safer Sex, Social Gatherings, and Monkeypox CDC. I hope IM Doc weighs in. Whatever you think of the narrow usefulnesses, “advice” like this (as in the headline!) reinforces the idea that monkeypox is a de facto STD. This looks as if the CDC is setting up gays for blame for its failures.
Drought may force nuclear power production cut Associated Press. Re France.
France creates task force to stem impact of ‘historic’ drought France24 (resilc)
How much does Taiwan depend on China? DW (resilc)
Taiwan accuses China of simulating invasion as US relations nosedive Firstpost (J-LS)
Blinken chides China’s ‘irresponsible’ cut in US communication Al Jazeera (resilc)
Somalia supports China amid rising tensions on Taiwan Anadolu Agency
Pelosi’s Taiwan visit and the limits of American strategy Responsible Statecraft (resilc)
Inside London’s Struggle to Wean Itself From Russian Billions Vanity Fair (resilc)
Energy Bills Are Set To Soar In The UK OilPrice (resilc)
The people about to choose Britain’s next prime minister The Economist
New Not-So-Cold War
Exclusive: U.S. readies new $1 billion Ukraine weapons package Reuters (resilc)
Alarm mounts in western capitals over Turkey’s deepening ties with Russia Financial Times. The West has lost its mind:
Western capitals are increasingly alarmed about the deepening economic co-operation between Turkey’s president Recep Tayyip Erdoğan and Vladimir Putin, warning of the mounting risk that the Nato member state could be hit by punitive retaliation if it helps Russia avoid sanctions.
Note Turkey has been snubbed by the EU and by Western arms makers. From DefenseNews last October:
Challenging Western sanctions, NATO ally Turkey has pledged to further its defense industry cooperation with Russia, including fighter jet and aircraft engine technologies, a second batch of S-400 air defense systems, and submarines….
In an interview with CBS show “Face the Nation,” Erdogan said America’s refusal to both deliver F-35 fighter jets — which Turkey agreed to purchase — and sell Patriot air defense missiles gave Turkey no choice but to turn to Russia for the S-400 anti-aircraft missile system. The acquisition was a point of contention between Turkey and NATO during the Trump administration, and that sentiment has carried over to the new administration.
Now I see why Alexander Mercouris floated the idea that Turkey could depart NATO (not immediately, but the idea seemed impossible heretofore) and that the West will be trying (harder) to oust Ergogan
“After the confiscation of property of the Russian Federation”: the Federation Council said that Ukraine has ceased to be safe for gas transit RT. Original: «После конфискации собственности РФ»: в Совфеде заявили, что Украина перестала быть безопасной для транзита газа. Recall the discussion at NC of the pervasive political and press silence about the role of the Yamal-Europe pipeline as part of Europe’s gas woes (map here). Yamal-Europe carried 33-34 billion cubic meters of gas annually v. 55 billion cubic meters for Nord Stream 1 at full capacity. Ukraine cut off the supply on its leg of Yamal-Europe, on the pretext that it ran through Russian controlled territory, when that had been true for months. Poland refused to pay for gas in roubles, so Russia cut off their volume. So the Russian announcement is tantamount to make the closure of the leg of Yamal-Europe through Ukraine permanent (conceivably the West could have beaten up on Ukraine to stop blocking supply so the EU could get more gas, but no longer).
Has the Ukraine Conflict Driven U.S. Government Officials Crazy? CovertAction Magazine (resilc)
Bladed ‘Ninja’ missile decapitated al-Qaeda’s head Asia Times (resilc)
Zawahiri’s killing unlikely to weaken al-Qaida significantly The Guardian (resilc)
World Bank blames Lebanon for ‘deliberate’ economic crisis Al-Monitor (furzy)
Imperial Collapse Watch
Big Brother is Watching You Watch
State Legislatures Are Torching Democracy New Yorker (furzy)
It’s Hard To Win A Senate Race When You’ve Never Won An Election Before FiveThirtyEight (resilc)
FTX-Backed PACs Expand the Crypto Lobby in Congress The Intercept
Antidote du jour (via):
And a bonus:
Little monkey is anxious to save a trapped kitty pic.twitter.com/jqWpobVOiZ
— pups (@pups_Puppies1) August 6, 2022
See yesterday’s Links and Antidote du Jour here.