Tuesday 11th of August 2020

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by Gus Leonisky on Tue, 2020-08-11 16:25

Network Ten will axe local news bulletins in Adelaide, Brisbane and Perth in sweeping changes likely to be accompanied by widespread job cuts in three states.

High-profile presenters Kerri-Anne Kennerley, Natarsha Belling, Tim Bailey and Mike Larkin will reportedly lose their jobs as part of the cost-cutting.

Under a major restructure of its news operations, the Brisbane and Perth bulletins will be presented in Sydney from September 14.

Melbourne will present the Adelaide bulletin.

Presenters, journalists and operations staff are all targeted under the widespread cuts.

Among the first to announce they were leaving the network, Adelaide newsreader Rebecca Morse.


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by Gus Leonisky on Tue, 2020-08-11 16:18

US President Donald Trump was abruptly led out of a news briefing by a Secret Service agent, after shots were fired outside the White House.

The agent walked on stage as Mr Trump was speaking and whispered in his ear.

Mr Trump was heard to say "Oh!" and "What's happening", as he left the room. The White House was placed on lockdown during Monday's incident.

The president returned nine minutes later to say the situation was under control and a man had been shot. 

The US Secret Service confirmed the incident, saying there had been "an officer involved shooting at 17th Street and Pennsylvania Ave". 

It said "a male subject and a USSS officer were both transported to a local hospital", adding that "at no time during this incident was the White House complex breached or were any protectees in danger".

President Trump told reporters he believed the US Secret Service had shot a suspect, who was armed "from what I understand".

He said did not know if the person harboured any ill intentions towards him.

"It might not have had anything to do with me," the president said.

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by Gus Leonisky on Tue, 2020-08-11 14:03



... it can only be the establishment Republican types perched at places like Brookings and AEI who now see some sort of opening on the D-team. But if they seem like the mushy end of the right flank, think again. These guys are charter members of the Washington foreign policy consensus, mixed in with neoconservative never-Trumpers like Eliot Cohen and Robert Kagan (his wife Victoria Nuland was a top neocon official in the Clinton State Department) who have despised Trump from the beginning and think his America First foreign policy is “deeply misguided” and leading the country to “crisis.” Kagan, who openly supported Hillary Clinton in 2016, has already authored at least one anti-Trump foreign policy op-ed with top Biden advisor Anthony Blinken. Wolves in sheep’s clothing. 

At the same time, The Lincoln Project has been killing Trump in online video fare this summer, and is currently the signature Republican opposition to the president’s re-election. It is led by several GOP strategists from losing presidential campaigns, including Steve Schmidt, who is best known for convincing military hawk Sen. John McCain to put Sarah Palin on his ticket in 2008, as well as Rick Weaver (McCain, 2000), and Stuart Stevens (Mitt Romney, 2012). 

Meanwhile, the backbone of Republican Voters Against Trump is Bill Kristol, who as AEI fellow and editor of The Weekly Standard, was the media mouthpiece for U.S. regime change in the Middle East, dating back in the Clinton Administration, all the way through the invasion of Iraq and his magazine’s timely demise in 2018. The PAC is a project of Defending Democracy Together, which he also directs. Other projects for the outfit include “Republicans Against Putin” and “Standing with Allies” (which urges continued assistance to the Kurds, read: more U.S. troops in Syria). Kristol also co-founded and contributes to the anti-Trump webzine, The Bulwark, which he co-founded in 2018. 

Neocon friends and allies are not in short supply. From Max Boot at The Washington Post singing the praises of The Lincoln Group:

If we are ever again to have a sane and sober center-right party in America — something we desperately need — then the Trumpified GOP must first be demolished. That is what the Lincoln Project is trying to accomplish, and more power to it. By leading the charge against the Republican Party, its founders have shown greater fealty to conservative principles than 99 percent of elected Republicans.

While we cannot speak for the conservative principles of every elected Republican we can safely say that “sane and sober” would not be words for how Boot, a saber rattler of the first order, ceaselessly promoted the failed U.S. war policy in Iraq. Once hated by non-interventionists on the left and right, his fedora-wearing visage is now firmly ensconced in the firmament of Washington’s elite liberal press. As is never-Trumper and neoconservative Jennifer Rubin, another Iraq War cheerleader, who tweeted about Lincoln’s willingness “to say out loud what we all whisper.



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by Gus Leonisky on Tue, 2020-08-11 08:05
The US Intelligence Community (IC) issued a report that says Russia is not a fan of Democratic presidential hopeful Joe Biden and the anti-Russia ‘establishment.’ If true, what is so unbelievable about the Kremlin’s stance?

The statement released on Friday says, in part, that Russia is employing “a range of measures to … denigrate former Vice President Biden and what it sees as an anti-Russia ‘establishment.’” It went on to say that this approach is consistent with Moscow's criticism of Joe Biden when he was Barack Obama’s vice president “for his role in … policies on Ukraine and its support for the anti-Putin opposition inside Russia.” Perhaps the best response to such an accusation would be to ask: Does the Democratic Party really need the Kremlin’s help in denigrating their top nominee for the presidential ticket when Joe Biden has been more than capable of denigrating himself? In fact, the day before the IC statement was released it was difficult to deny that the 77-year-old candidate’s use-by shelf date may have already expired.


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by Gus Leonisky on Tue, 2020-08-11 07:09

The official tasked with auditing staff arrangements in Dominic Perrottet’s office is a former deputy chairman of icare, sparking concerns his inquiry would not fully explore the relationship between the Treasurer’s office and the troubled public insurer.

Treasury secretary Michael Pratt will conduct the audit, but his appointment has been branded a sham by the opposition.

Premier Gladys Berejiklian yesterday expressed full confidence in her Treasurer, who is under increasing pressure following the revelation last week that the salaries of two of his personal ministerial staff were paid by the besieged public insurance body.

Mr Perrottet on Thursday night accepted the resignation of his chief of staff, Nigel Freitas, who took responsibility for what he said was an administrative error relating to the secondment of two icare staff, including policy adviser Edward Yap. Mr Freitas had worked with Mr Perrottet for four years.

Secondments from government sector agencies such as icare are permitted and occur regularly. However, the Herald has been told the arrangements relating to Mr Yap and an administrative assistant were discovered on Thursday to have not been documented as required by regulations.

Icare is a state-owned agency created in 2015, whose board is directly accountable to Mr Perrottet.


Read more: SMH 11/8/2020

by Gus Leonisky on Tue, 2020-08-11 07:03

from: https://www.bbc.com/news/world-europe-53721410

The US said it was "deeply concerned" by the election and urged the government to "respect the right to peacefully assemble and to refrain from the use of force”.


I nearly fell off my chair…

Is this the same US that is shutting down Chicago and other cities due to BLM protests and other Covid19 protests and and and hitting journos on the head…

And we’re confused about:

Russian President Vladimir Putin congratulated his Belarusian counterpart on his victory, despite friction over accusations of a Russian plot which Mr Lukashenko has tried to link to the opposition.

While :


But Mr Lukashenko poured scorn on Ms Tikhanovskaya's comments.

"So Lukashenko [me], who is at the top of the power structure and at the head of the state, after getting 80% of the vote must voluntarily hand over power to them," the president said. "The orders are coming from over there [abroad]."

Where is over there [abroad]?

Is the opposition to Lukashenko financed/supported by the Russians or by the West? Weird...

My wild guess would be the support for the opposition to Lukashenko is coming from the USA (99 % chances), in a different format to that that shook Ukraine in 2014. As they say "a different course of action for a different situation"... That's the unsaid motto of the CIA... But I could be wrong... Russia (1 %) might have shaken the apple tree as a "reverse psychology plot"... Meanwhile if the majority of people in Belarus are happy with Lukashenko, so be it... 

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by Gus Leonisky on Tue, 2020-08-11 06:21

Federal officials will be shielded from direct scrutiny at the NSW inquiry into the Ruby Princess cruise ship amid accusations the Morrison government has failed to co-operate with the investigation.

The federal decision means the special commission will have to report without being able to question two federal officers who helped clear the ship to disembark 2700 passengers in Sydney in March.

Commissioner Bret Walker has issued a legal summons to hear testimony from one of the officials, a Department of Agriculture worker who granted permission for the ship to enter port, but was rebuffed again on Monday.

Prime Minister Scott Morrison promised to co-operate with the inquiry on April 21 and insisted on Monday he had done so, but he did not explain why the two officials should not appear to give evidence.

Asked why he did not encourage the two officials to come forward and speak to the special commission, Mr Morrison said the government continued to help the inquiry.

"I said we would co-operate with the inquiry as we have with other inquiries, and that’s exactly what we’ve done," he said.

More than 1000 cases of COVID-19 are estimated to have come from the Ruby Princess passengers who disembarked in Sydney on March 19, four days after Mr Morrison said ships would only put passengers ashore "directly under the command" of the Australian Border Force.

A federal Department of Agriculture biosecurity officer did not complete the checklist required for travellers with illnesses, which led to errors in a report that led to formal permission for the ship to disembark.

An Australian Border Force officer gave permission for passengers to leave the ship but made a mistake when checking health tests for some of those passengers.

The ABC revealed on July 31 that the ABF officer thought the passengers with "flu-like symptoms" had tested negative to COVID-19 when they had only tested negative for the common flu.

After hearing from dozens of state officials as well as the ship’s crew, Mr Walker issued the summons for the federal biosecurity officer to appear at the inquiry but encountered objections from Canberra.

The Australian Government Solicitor argued the commission did not have the jurisdiction to question federal officials.

Labor home affairs spokeswoman Kristina Keneally said the commonwealth was responsible for border control and should be accountable in the Ruby Princess inquiry.

"All Australians had to live with the consequences of Scott Morrison’s failure to stop the Ruby Princess," she said.



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by Gus Leonisky on Tue, 2020-08-11 06:08

“Real” Geoengineering News

Stratospheric Controlled Perturbation Experiment (SCoPEx), a controversial program aimed at reversing the climate crisis that we covered here several weeks ago suffered a recent blow after its chairwoman stepped down.

The program is based at Harvard University and until July 22 had an advisory council chaired by the director of the California Strategic Growth Council, Louise Bedsworth. But after coming under scrutiny both from global climate justice groups and in a June 19 story by The Real News Network, Bedsworth has stepped down from the post.

The scrutiny was aimed at the technology for which the research group is pushing to develop a governance mechanism, called solar geoengineering or solar radiation management, for reflecting sunlight away from the Earth to halt the greenhouse effect of climate change. That technofix—which involves spraying aerosols into the atmosphere for an indefinite period of time to shield the Earth—is seen by many as both potentially dangerous to deploy and also a way to continue business as usual in emitting greenhouse gases.


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by Gus Leonisky on Mon, 2020-08-10 19:57

Invasion of the New Normals

By CJ Hopkins

They’re here! No, not the pod people from Invasion of the Body Snatchers. We’re not being colonized by giant alien fruit. I’m afraid it is a little more serious than that. People’s minds are being taken over by a much more destructive and less otherworldly force … a force that transforms them overnight into aggressively paranoid, order-following, propaganda-parroting totalitarians.

You know the people I’m talking about. Some of them are probably your friends and family, people you have known for years, and who had always seemed completely rational, but who are now convinced that we need to radically alter the fabric of human society to protect ourselves from a virus that causes mild to moderate flu-like symptoms (or absolutely no symptoms at all) in over 95% of those infected, and that over 99.6% survive, which, it goes without saying, is totally insane.

I’ve been calling them “corona-totalitarians,” but I’m going to call them the “New Normals” from now on, as that more accurately evokes the pathologized-totalitarian ideology they are systematically spreading. At this point, I think it is important to do that, because, clearly, their ideological program has nothing to do with any actual virus, or any other actual public health threat.

As is glaringly obvious to anyone whose mind has not been taken over yet, the “apocalyptic coronavirus pandemic” was always just a Trojan horse, a means of introducing the “New Normal,” which they’ve been doing since the very beginning.

The official propaganda started in March, and it reached full intensity in early April. Suddenly, references to the “New Normal” were everywhere, not only in the leading corporate media (e.g., CNNNPRCNBCThe New York TimesThe GuardianThe AtlanticForbes, et al.)the IMF and the World Bank Group, the WEFUNWHOCDC (and the list goes on), but also on the blogs of athletic organizationsglobal management consulting firmscharter school websites, and random YouTube videos.

The slogan has been relentlessly repeated (in a textbook totalitarian “big lie” fashion) for going on the past six months. We have heard it repeated so many times that many of us have forgotten how insane it is, the idea that the fundamental structure of society needs to be drastically and irrevocably altered on account of a virus that poses no threat to the vast majority of the human species.

And, make no mistake, that is exactly what the “New Normal” movement intends to do. “New Normalism” is a classic totalitarian movement (albeit with a pathological twist), and it is the goal of every totalitarian movement to radically, utterly transform society, to remake the world in its monstrous image.

That is what totalitarianism is, this desire to establish complete control over everything and everyone, every thought, emotion, and human interaction. The character of its ideology changes (i.e., Nazism, Stalinism, Maoism, etc.), but this desire for complete control over people, over society, and ultimately life itself, is the essence of totalitarianism … and what has taken over the minds of the New Normals.

In the New Normal society they want to establish, as in every totalitarian society, fear and conformity will be pervasive. Their ideology is a pathologized ideology (as opposed to, say, the racialized ideology of the Nazis), so its symbology will be pathological. Fear of disease, infection, and death, and obsessive attention to matters of health will dominate every aspect of life. Paranoid propaganda and ideological conditioning will be ubiquitous and constant.

Everyone will be forced to wear medical masks to maintain a constant level of fear and an omnipresent atmosphere of sickness and death, as if the world were one big infectious disease ward. Everyone will wear these masks at all times, at work, at home, in their cars, everywhere. Anyone who fails or refuses to do so will be deemed “a threat to public health,” and beaten and arrested by the police or the military, or swarmed by mobs of New Normal vigilantes.

Cities, regions, and entire countries will be subjected to random police-state lockdowns, which will be justified by the threat of “infection.” People will be confined to their homes for up to 23-hours a day, and allowed out only for “essential reasons.” Police and soldiers will patrol the streets, stopping people, checking their papers, and beating and arresting anyone out in public without the proper documents, or walking or standing too close to other people, like they are doing in Melbourne, Australia, currently.

The threat of “infection” will be used to justify increasingly insane and authoritarian edicts, compulsory demonstration-of-fealty rituals, and eventually the elimination of all forms of dissent. Just as the Nazis believed they were waging a war against the “subhuman races,” the New Normals will be waging a war on “disease,” and on anyone who “endangers the public health” by challenging their ideological narrative.

Like every other totalitarian movement, in the end, they will do whatever is necessary to purify society of “degenerate influences” (i.e., anyone who questions or disagrees with them, or who refuses to obey their every command).

They are already aggressively censoring the Internet and banning their opponents’ political protests, and political leaders and the corporate media are systematically stigmatizing those of us who dare to challenge their official narrative as “extremists,” “Nazis,” “conspiracy theorists,” “covidiots,” “coronavirus deniers,” “anti-vaxxers,” and “esoteric” freaks. One German official even went so far as to demand that dissidents be deported … presumably on trains to somewhere in the East.

Despite this increasing totalitarianization and pathologization of virtually everything, the New Normals will carry on with their lives as if everything were … well, completely normal. They will go out to restaurants and the movies in their masks. They will work, eat, and sleep in their masks. Families will go on holiday in their masks, or in their “Personal Protective Upper-Body Bubble-Wear.” 

They will arrive at the airport eight hours early, stand in their little color-coded boxes, and then follow the arrows on the floor to the “health officials” in the hazmat suits, who will take their temperature through their foreheads and shove ten-inch swabs into their sinus cavities. Parents who wish to forego this experience will have the option to preventatively vaccinate themselves and their children with the latest experimental vaccine (after signing a liability waiver, of course) within a week or so before their flights, and then present the officials with proof of vaccination (and of their compliance with various other “health guidelines”) on their digital Identity and Public Health Passports, or subdermal biometric chips.

Children, as always, will suffer the worst of it. They will be terrorized and confused from the moment they are born, by their parents, their teachers, and by the society at large. They will be subjected to ideological conditioning and paranoid behavioral modification at every stage of their socialization … with fanciful reusable corporate plague masks branded with loveable cartoon charactersparanoia-inducing picture books for toddlers, and paranoid “social distancing” rituals, among other forms of psychological torture.

This conditioning (or torture) will take place at home, as there will be no more schools, or rather, no public schools. The children of the wealthy will attend private schools, where they can be cost-effectively “socially-distanced.” Working class children will sit at home, alone, staring into screens, wearing their masks, their hyperactivity and anxiety disorders stabilized with anti-depressant medications.

And so on … I think you get the picture. I hope so, because I don’t have the heart to go on.

I pray this glimpse into the New Normal future has terrified and angered you enough to rise up against it before it is too late. This isn’t a joke, folks. The New Normals are serious. If you cannot see where their movement is headed, you do not understand totalitarianism. Once it starts, and reaches this stage, it does not stop, not without a fight. It continues to its logical conclusion. 

The way that usually happens is, people tell themselves it isn’t happening, it can’t be happening, not to us. They tell themselves this as the totalitarian program is implemented, step by step, one seemingly harmless step at a time. They conform, because, at first, the stakes aren’t so high, and their conformity leads to more conformity, and the next thing they know they’re telling their grandchildren that they had no idea where the trains were going.

If you have made it through to the end of this essay, your mind hasn’t been taken over yet … the New Normals clicked off around paragraph 2. 

What that means is that it is your responsibility to speak up, and to do whatever else you can, to stop the New Normal future from becoming a reality. You will not be rewarded for it. You will be ridiculed and castigated for it. Your New Normal friends will hate you for it. Your New Normal family will forsake you for it. The New Normal police might arrest you for it. It is your responsibility to do it anyway … as, of course, it is also mine.


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by Gus Leonisky on Mon, 2020-08-10 19:32

75 Years after Hiroshima

The Nuclear Risk Is "Higher Than it has been since the Darkest Days of the Cold War"

In an interview, Izumi Nakamitsu, the United Nations' leading disarmament official, warns that the risk of a nuclear war is greater than ever. She says that the lack of dialogue between nations has created an extremely dangerous situation today.


Japanese diplomat Izumi Nakamitsu, 57, holds degrees in law and international relations from universities in Washington, D.C., and Tokyo. After her studies, she began working for the United Nations. She has also taught international relations at Tokyo’s Hitotsubashi University. Nakamitsu has served as the UN under-secretary-general of disarmament affairs since 2017.


Interview Conducted By Dietmar Pieper

DER SPIEGEL: The global system of nuclear arms treaties is eroding. The INF treaty is history. The ongoing negotiations surrounding the New START treaty have been difficult. There is even talk of new nuclear testing in the United States. Are we about to lose everything that has been achieved during the Cold War and the time since?

Nakamitsu: Arms control and disarmament instruments provide tangible security and stability benefits. It is highly concerning that some governments appear to forget this lesson. Instead, we should work together to maintain what we have. And there are some important elements still standing.

DER SPIEGEL: What are you thinking of?

Nakamitsu: We are encouraging the United States and the Russian Federation to extend the New START treaty, which limits the number of deployed strategic nuclear warheads. The norm against nuclear testing is also one of the greatest achievements of the post-Cold War era. We consistently encourage countries to identify means that will accelerate the entry into force and universalization process of the treaty banning nuclear tests.


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See also:

losing ground to the competition... in saving the furniture...

and more...

from victory via becoming rust at the bottom, with the sad loss of lives, to MAD...