Saturday 21 May 2022

Things I read

Scott Ritter, the American weapons inspector who told the world, before the US invasion, that there were no WMD in Iraq, has stopped thinking Russia will defeat Ukraine and now expects an endless proxy war.

'Yes, Russia is winning in the east which is what they said their objective was all along. And they are accomplishing that. That is the special Military Operation. But now we’re talking about “war”, and I don’t think Russia has made that transition yet. This is a defacto proxy war between the west and Russia using Ukrainian forces as NATO’s sword. The object of this is to “bleed Russia dry”. And if Russia doesn’t change the dynamic, Russia will be bled dry.” Zelensky has indicated that he’s willing to mobilize a million people, at a time when the west is ready to provide the funding and equipment to turn those million men into a real military threat.

'So, I see what has been happening in the last few weeks as being decisive.

'The military aid the west is providing is changing the dynamic and if Russia doesn’t find a way to address this meaningfully, and to eliminate it as a military capability… then the conflict will never end.' 

(“Saturday Morning Live with Scott Ritter and Ray McGovern", You Tube)

"Middle-class socialists, according to Orwell, may speak for the workers. They may go in search of the workers. They may praise the workers. But secretly they dislike the workers for being working class, just as they dislike themselves for being middle class."

Robert Colville

Social scientists have identified at least three fundamental forces that collectively bind together successful democracies: social capital (extensive social networks with high levels of trust), strong institutions and shared stories. Social media has weakened all three. To see how, we must understand how social media changed over time, and especially in the years following 2009.
Jonathan Haidt in yesterday's Times.

'Instead of changing as usual at Charing Cross, I came straight on to Rio de Janeiro.' 

Alec Guinness at the very end of The Lavender Hill Mob. It reminds me of my life.

"Inflation is a regressive tax that most hurts the least affluent." 
Jeff Bezos. Is this true? It hurts most those with money in cash in a safe deposit box or under the bed.

"I have read somewhere or other, in Dionysius of Halicarnassus, I think, that history is philosophy teaching by examples." 

Henry St John, Viscount Bolingbroke. I might be wrong but I think this was in his maiden speech in the House of Commons. How much more stupid and ignorant English politicians are now than in Queen Anne's reign.

Paul Gottfried said that, unlike England, with its essentially mediaeval social structure, America was made by Protestant sectarians who neither had nor desired a mediaeval past and whose descendants have turned into celebrants of progress, commerce and human rights. I don't want England or Europe to lose touch with their medieval past.

Everyone wants to be a blowhard about both sides of the abortion issue but nobody wants to talk about how people don't know how to make personal connection without sex and yet are all desperate for deeper connection bc of how f-ing isolated we are.
Melody Arayi


  1. 'Things I read'

    Joseph Brodsky – On Ukrainian Independence

  2. US stock prices and President Biden’s approval rating continued to tank, as inflation swamped household income. Only 39% of Americans approve of Biden’s performance, and just 33% of Democrats think the country is heading in the right direction. That’s no surprise, given the nearly 40% collapse of retailers’ stock prices this year. The S&P 500 is teetering on the edge of a bear market – that is, a peak-to-trough decline of 20% or more.

    The Biden stimulus – compounding the errors of the Trump Administration – amounted to a Ponzi scheme that threw $6 trillion of spending power at US consumers while at the same time constricting supply. That’s like handing out 10,000 vouchers for 5,000 available hot dogs at a baseball game.

    The result is an inflation rate of 12%, not the 8% reported by the Bureau of Labor Statistics. Hourly earnings are rising by just 5% a year, so real income is crashing. Americans have been running up credit-card debt to make up the difference, but the meltdown of retail stocks signals that the post-COVID consumer boom is over.

    The Asia Times adjusted inflation rate of 12% implies that the fall in real earnings during the first quarter of 2022 was the worst on record, worse than the 1979-1980 recession – the last time that inflation rate was in double digits.

    Biden bunko blows up with stock market
    MAY 21, 2022

    1. He is a disaster. Only George W Bush was worse, unless you go back to LBJ.