39 thoughts on “News/Politics 2-26-22

  1. “The West Could Have Prevented The Russo-Ukrainian War, But Chose Not To”

    “President Biden and our European allies closed every off-ramp for Russia while misleading Ukraine into thinking we would defend it.”

    https://thefederalist.com/2022/02/25/the-west-could-have-prevented-the-russo-ukrainian-war-but-chose-not-to/

    “Not every war is unnecessary or avoidable, but history might well judge the Russo-Ukrainian war as both, not least because the United States and its European allies could have prevented it, but didn’t.

    The decision to go to war was Russia’s, and Russia bears ultimate responsibility for what happens now. But that does not absolve the West of its strategic incompetence and complacency, and it does not mean the United States and its allies are guiltless in all of this.

    At multiple points leading up to the current crisis, there were ways for the United States and Europe to create off-ramps for both Moscow and Kyiv, to shepherd a negotiated settlement so that both sides got a minimum of what they needed, and some of what they wanted.

    What might that have looked like? For Moscow, a recognition of its strategic claim on Crimea and the port of Sevastopol as the home of its Black Sea Fleet. For Kyiv, the promise of political independence and greater integration with Europe in exchange for territorial concessions.

    The West should have also considered the folly and recklessness of floating the idea of NATO membership for Ukraine, something no serious person ever thought Russia would accept without going to war to prevent it. And yet as far back as 2008, the United States openly discussed the possibility of Ukraine’s membership in NATO, even as Kyiv still claimed sovereignty over Russia’s most important naval base in Sevastopol. Under these conditions, the idea of Ukraine joining NATO was preposterous.

    Instead, for years now the West has encouraged Ukraine to take a hard line on Russia, with false promises that the U.S. and NATO would stand up to Moscow and defend Ukraine when it came down to it, or that Ukraine would become a NATO member and thus secure its untenable borders.

    As the political scientist John Mearsheimer argued back in 2016, the West has been leading Ukraine “down the primrose path, and that the end result is that Ukraine is going to get wrecked. … What we’re doing is encouraging the Ukrainians to play tough with the Russians. We’re encouraging the Ukrainians to think they will ultimately become part of the West, because we will ultimately defeat Putin and we will ultimately get our way, time is on our side.””

    ——-

    And how’d that work out for Ukraine?

    We sold them out…..

    Liked by 1 person

  2. “Biden Killed The Israel-Europe EastMed Gas Pipeline, How’s That Looking Now?”

    “Why is the U.S. continuing to pursue a policy that strengthens Russia and weakens our allies?”

    https://legalinsurrection.com/2022/02/biden-killed-the-israel-europe-eastmed-gas-pipeline-hows-that-looking-now/

    “Like life, a presidency is what happens to you while you’re busy making other plans.

    Joseph Biden intended his presidency to be about tackling the climate crisis – his most urgent priority after containing Covid-19. On his very first day in office, President Biden canceled the Keystone XL pipeline project, which was to carry millions of gallons of oil from Canada to refineries in the United States. The executive order canceling Keystone also revoked oil and gas development at national wildlife monuments.

    A few months later, Biden lifted sanctions on the Nord Stream 2 pipeline planned to carry natural gas from Russia to Germany, and ultimately approved it. Previous administrations opposed it as increasing German dependence on Russia and letting Russia deprive Ukraine of revenue by circumventing existing gas-transit networks. As of 2020, Russia supplied roughly 65% of Germany’s natural gas imports and 40% of European Union imported gas. Italy, which imports some 90% of its gas, is also heavily dependent on Russia.

    Finally, citing environmental concerns, Biden withdrew support for the EastMed Pipeline in January 2022. According to an accord between Israel, Greece, and Cyprus, the underwater pipeline was planned to stretch 1,180 miles across the Mediterranean Sea, connecting Israeli gas to Cyprus and Greece, and on to Italy. It was expected to cost about $7 billion, and would have carried 10 billion cubic meters of gas a year initially, with the possibility of eventually doubling capacity. Biden’s withdrawal killed the project for practical purposes.

    In the buildup to Russia’s invasion of Ukraine, two of Europe’s largest economies – Germany and Italy – worked hard to weaken preemptive sanctions. Germany refused to terminate the Nord Stream 2 pipeline. Even after Putin purported to recognize Ukrainian provinces as independent countries, while essentially rejecting Ukraine’s independence, Germany merely halted certifying the pipeline. But, it refused to commit to canceling it altogether. Italy fought to limit threatened sanctions to a few narrow sectors – excluding energy in particular. Even now, with Russian troops all over Ukraine, the E.U. continues to fight stronger sanctions like excluding Russia from the SWIFT banking system.

    Add to this Biden’s poor foreign policy judgment. As former defense secretary Robert Gates put it, Biden has been “wrong on nearly every major foreign policy and national security issue over the past four decades.”

    The upshot is that, despite threats of punishing if not crippling sanctions, the U.S. and its allies have actually done little.”

    ———

    Biden is a joke, a bad one.

    Liked by 1 person

  3. His numbers still seem way to high, thanks to clueless Democrats who can’t admit they were wrong.

    “NPR/PBS NewsHour/Marist National Poll: The Biden Administration Heading into the State of the Union Address, February 2022

    Americans Perceive Biden’s First Year in Office to Be a Failure… Want Biden’s Administration to Focus on Inflation Amid Persistent Financial Concerns”

    https://maristpoll.marist.edu/polls/npr-pbs-newshour-marist-national-poll-the-biden-administration-heading-into-the-state-of-the-union-address-february-2022/

    “President Joe Biden will deliver his first State of the Union address on Tuesday to a nation whose focus has shifted away from the COVID-19 pandemic and who is sending a message that they want Biden to focus on other issues, especially inflation. Americans’ concerns about their own personal finances and the overall direction of the country provide a stark backdrop for Biden who will face the nation with dismal reviews of his first year in office and his lowest job approval rating.”

    A plurality of Americans (38%) thinks President Biden’s top priority should be inflation. The coronavirus pandemic (11%), voting laws (11%), foreign policy (10%), and violent crime (10%) follow. Other issues receive single digits. Of note, more than seven in ten Americans (72%) are optimistic that the nation is nearing an end to the coronavirus pandemic.

    Majorities of Americans think Biden’s first year in office has been a failure (56%), he is not fulfilling campaign promises (54%), and he is doing more to divide the nation (52%) than to unite it. Americans are more than four times as likely to consider Biden’s first year to be a major failure (36%) than a major success (8%).”

    ———

    “Americans Remain Pessimistic About Nation’s Direction
    30% of residents nationally, down from 34% in December, think the nation is moving in the right direction, while 67%, up from 61% in December, think it is moving in the wrong one.”

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  4. Conspiracy nuts they called us. Crazy talk they said.

    But admit they were wrong?

    Never happen.

    “The UK Govt Accepts COVID Lab Leak Theory ‘Behind Closed Doors’

    Additionally, scientists find covid virus contains a DNA sequence patented by Moderna three years before the pandemic began.”

    But it wasn’t orchestrated in a lab?

    Sure….. 🤡

    ——-

    https://legalinsurrection.com/2022/02/the-uk-govt-accepts-covid-lab-leak-theory-behind-closed-doors/

    “For those of us at Legal Insurrection, a new report from the United Kingdom holds little to no surprises.

    However, consumers of mainstream media who were co-opted by Biden’s Chief Medical Advisor Dr. Anthony Fauci and his minions in their quest to promote “natural origins” of the virus that causes covid, a new report from the British government will be shocking.

    The British newspaper The Telegraph indicates that behind closed doors, authorities believe a lab leak in Wuhan, China, is now considered the most likely origin of the pandemic.

    On Monday, the Prime Minister told the House of Commons that the UK biosecurity strategy would be refreshed to protect against “natural zoonosis and laboratory leaks”, in a public acknowledgement of the threat from insecure research facilities.

    There is mounting suspicion that Covid-19 leaked from the Wuhan Institute of Virology which had been collecting and experimenting on dangerous bat coronaviruses in the years before the virus first emerged in the city.

    The Government has asked for evidence before drafting a new biosecurity strategy, which will deal with “accidental release and dual-use research of concern, where life science research is capable of being misapplied to do harm”.

    Hamish de Bretton-Gordon, an expert on chemical and biological counter-terrorism and former British Army officer, has submitted evidence for the strategy.

    He said: “I think the official view [within Government] is that it is as likely as anything else to have caused the pandemic. A lot of people like myself think it is more likely. I think attitudes have changed a little bit. The zoonotic transfer theory just didn’t make sense.

    “There is a huge amount of concern about coming out publicly, but behind closed doors most people think it’s a lab leak. And they are coming round to the fact that even if they don’t agree with that, they must accept it’s likely, and they must make sure the policies are in place to stop it.”

    My first report on the Wuhan lab leak scenario was published in February 2020. It was challenging to get substantive data, but many people persisted.

    In May 2020, 17 international intelligence agencies had reached the same conclusion. In early 2021, the World Health Organization was forced to backtrack in its assertions that the virus could not have come from a lab leak. More recently, a Harvard/MIT scientist went before a panel of United Kingdom’s Members of Parliament (MPs) and asserted a Wuhan lab is likely the source of SARS-CoV-2, the virus that causes COVID-19.
    Yes, I have all these receipts…and many more.

    The reversal is damning for everyone involved in the media cover-up and the suppression of the lab leak theory as “misinformation.” This includes Dr. Francis Collins, a Fauci henchman, who says the lab leak theory is merely a “distraction.””

    ——–

    “And in breaking news that further strengthens the lab leak argument, a study recently published in “Frontiers in Virology” indicates that scientists have identified genetic material owned by Moderna in the virus’s spike protein.

    They identified a tiny snippet of code that is identical to part of a gene patented by the vaccine maker three years before the pandemic.

    It was discovered in SARS-CoV-2’s unique furin cleavage site, the part that makes it so good at infecting people and separates it from other coronaviruses.

    The structure has been one of the focal points of debate about the virus’s origin, with some scientists claiming it could not have been acquired naturally.

    The international team of researchers suggest the virus may have mutated to have a furin cleavage site during experiments on human cells in a lab.

    They claim there is a one-in-three-trillion chance Moderna’s sequence randomly appeared through natural evolution.

    Given these news reports, it will be interesting to see how much more news will be released that will be devastating to the “Experts” who were entrusted to protect American public health….and how fast Big Media walks back its assertions about the Wuhan lab.”

    Liked by 1 person

  5. Here ya’ go….

    Enjoy the reality that you’ve been lied to by “the experts” since day one, and that your govt is complicit in it all.

    https://www.dailymail.co.uk/news/article-10542309/Fresh-lab-leak-fears-study-finds-genetic-code-Covids-spike-protein-linked-Moderna-patent.html

    “More evidence Covid was tinkered with in a lab? Now scientists find virus contains tiny chunk of DNA that matches sequence patented by Moderna THREE YEARS before pandemic began”

    “Fresh suspicion that Covid may have been tinkered with in a lab emerged today after scientists found genetic material owned by Moderna in the virus’s spike protein.

    They identified a tiny snippet of code that is identical to part of a gene patented by the vaccine maker three years before the pandemic.

    It was discovered in SARS-CoV-2’s unique furin cleavage site, the part that makes it so good at infecting people and separates it from other coronaviruses.

    The structure has been one of the focal points of debate about the virus’s origin, with some scientists claiming it could not have been acquired naturally.

    The international team of researchers suggest the virus may have mutated to have a furin cleavage site during experiments on human cells in a lab.

    They claim there is a one-in-three-trillion chance Moderna’s sequence randomly appeared through natural evolution.

    But there is some debate about whether the match is as rare as the study claims, with other experts describing it as a ‘quirky’ coincidence rather than a ‘smoking gun’. ”

    Sure, a 1 in 3,000,000,000,000,000,000,000 quirk.

    I’m guessing complicit frauds Fauci and Collins are pushing that theory.

    Liked by 1 person

  6. Leftist suck. This is just like what GoFundMe did.

    Stop trusting them with your money.

    “Patreon suspends page for Ukrainian army donations”

    https://hotair.com/karen-townsend/2022/02/25/patreon-suspends-page-for-ukrainian-army-donations-n451084

    “Patreon is a San Francisco-based crowdfunding platform that was launched in 2013. A nonprofit page on the platform that fundraises for the Ukrainian army has been suspended and is under investigation by Patreon.

    Come Back Alive started in 2014 and is based in Kyiv. It is a nonprofit that provides equipment for the Ukrainian army. It raised hundreds of thousands of dollars in donations on its Patreon page. The donations poured in after Russia invaded Ukraine. The fundraising campaign is under investigation for supporting the purchase of military equipment which is banned by Patreon. Come Back Alive has been raising money but up until Russia invaded Ukraine this week, only small amounts were being donated over the last several months. After the war began, more than $300,000 was donated, including many donations of less than $1,000. That appears to have gotten the attention of Patreon administrators.

    “Patreon does not allow any campaigns involved in violence or purchasing of military equipment, regardless of their cause,” a company spokesperson told CNBC in an email. “We are investigating because of representations on their donation page for how the funds will be used. We have suspended the campaign in question while we investigate. If a page is ultimately removed our policy is to send the creator the remaining funds or refund all pledges.”

    Come Back Alive director Taras Chmut said that the organization last received money donated on its Patreon page in August. Is Patreon only now realizing what the money is being raised for and that it violates their policy? Chmut tried to access account details on the page Thursday but he received a message that read ““This page has been removed.” Other visitors to the page received the same message.

    Come Back Alive collects donations to distribute body armor, medical kits, and helmets to Ukrainian soldiers. It also provides mobile surveillance systems, televisions, and other equipment. Chmut was attempting to transfer money out of the account to pay for equipment. The group emailed Patreon when it couldn’t access the page. Patreon emailed back explaining it was looking into the case. Ukrainian officials announced Thursday a mobilization effort to expand the country’s military forces. However, the people joining often don’t have body armor or other equipment they may need to fight. Chmut is a veteran of Ukrainian armed forces. He explained that Ukraine is not a rich country and Come Back Alive supplements equipment needs for those who sign up to fight.

    If the Patreon page is permanently removed, Chmut will receive the remaining funds or Patreon will refund all of the pledges.

    The nonprofit has been collecting donations in bitcoin, too. Donations have been pouring in to a bitcoin wallet code listed on Come Back Alive’s website since the war began. The Patreon page, though, is the most convenient way for foreigners to contribute. Chmut said, “We have too much money here to lose it.” Data from blockchain analytics from Elliptic shows that during a 12-hour period, almost $400,000 in bitcoin was donated to Come Back Alive.”

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  7. Coward being cowardly.

    “Canadian Senator: Trudeau Revoked Emergencies Act as Senate Leaned Towards Disapproval

    The government’s representative in the Senate could not answer a simple question: “What exactly happened that the government decided to invoke the act?””

    https://legalinsurrection.com/2022/02/canadian-senator-trudeau-revoked-emergencies-act-as-senate-leaned-towards-disapproval/

    “Canadian Senator David Wells tweeted a thread confirming what we already thought: Trudeau revoked the Emergencies Act because he knew the Senate would not approve.”

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  8. Here’s an update on the Mohawk women on a mobility scooter trampled by the police in Ottawa.

    “Lady Trampled by Canadian Police Horses Moving to Florida

    The incident broke Candy Sero’s shoulder.”

    https://legalinsurrection.com/2022/02/lady-trampled-by-canadian-police-horses-moving-to-florida/

    —-

    “Weekend reports said Sero passed away, but her niece posted on Facebook that her aunt is alive. The incident broke her clavicle.

    Sero then posted a picture of herself on Twitter.”

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  9. Just Trump being right again…..

    ———-

    Liked by 1 person

  10. There’s a lot of Monday morning quarterbacking focused on the Ukraine right much of it from American politicians who couldn’t find it on a map. And some of it comes close to an apologist argument for Russia. From a Russian perspective, NATO enlargement has always seemed threatening especially since the US rejected the alternative — a grand Euro-American alliance stretching from Vancouver to Vladivostok. Initially, the west agreed to no expansion but then during the Clinton era; Poland, Hungary, and Czechia were added to NATO. Russia could probably live with that but then under Bush NATO expanded into the former USSR, the Baltic states. Its at this time Russia decided to push back. NATO expansion was not entirely US driven — other member states also needed to agree. Ukraine’s domestic politics then became a proxy war between Russia and the West — the Orange Revolution and Euromaiden. Without the breakaway republics vote, Ukraine turned westward — without votes from Luhansk and Donetsk, the pro Russian parties were easily defeated. This was a Russian error as they encouraged the “frozen conflict” which led to a western orientation for the rest of the Ukraine. I don’t see Biden’s role in this at all –with the exception of the Euromaiden protest which were supported by both US parties.

    While its true the west led Ukrainian gov’ts to orient themselves westward with promises of EU membership and maybe NATO, Ukrainians themselves want to orient themselves that way — given a choice between Russia and the EU, any sane person would take the latter. And the younger generations are even more adamant — they want the European lifestyle, they want to travel, study, and work all over Europe. Even in Russia, this allure is popular among the young people. Among my European friends and family, the Europeans advantage is highly valued no matter the political orientation.

    In all of this, Americans argue as if this was an American issue — Biden vs Trump, etc. Its not. The US is still the power behind NATO but EU cooperation is needed. The US whether Obama, Biden or Trump is not responsible for EU reliance on energy. A planned pipeline in the Mediterranean won’t stop or start as Biden wishes. The US reach and power in Europe is far less than Americans imagine. Right now, Canada and the US are proposing far tighter sanctions on Russia including SWIFT but this matters not unless Germany and the rest of the EU consent and for them there is substantial sacrifice. I do think the powers to be in both the American Republican party and the EU have been surprised by the amount of popular support for Ukraine and the willingness to sanction Russia despite the consequences. In the end, if Ukraine slows down Russian advances, the pressure among western gov’ts will grow.

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  11. The Canadian Senate is a home for retired politicians. Although failure to pass the Emergencies Act might be embarrassing, it can be ignored — just pass it in the House of Commons again. The Senate has very little power — it can only delay a bill not kill it.

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  12. Even many Democrats know Russia is acting out because we have a weak president.

    “HARVARD: 62% say Putin would not invade Ukraine if Trump were president”

    https://adnamerica.com/en/united-states/harvard-62-say-putin-would-not-invade-ukraine-if-trump-were-president

    “The survey, conducted by the Harvard Center for American Political Studies (CAPS) and The Harris Poll, found that 62% of registered voters polled said that Trump would have deterred Putin from taking military action in Ukraine if he were still president. Looking only at those who identified with a political party, 86% of Republicans and 38% of Democrats answered this way.”

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  13. We’ve known since the first Iraq escapade, the Gulf War, that Russian equipment is no match for US firepower.

    This just reaffirms that fact. 🙂

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  14. The US “leadership” wants him to play coward and let Russia have it’s way. Typical leftist elite, evacuate the rulers, leave the peons to suffer the wrath of the Russians.

    How sad.

    “‘I need ammunition, not a ride’: Ukraine’s Zelensky in response to U.S.’s reported evacuation request”

    https://www.marketwatch.com/story/i-need-ammunition-not-a-ride-ukraines-zelensky-in-response-to-u-s-s-reported-evacuation-request-01645897189

    “Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelensky was asked to evacuate Kyiv at the behest of the U.S. government but turned down the offer.

    Zelensky said in response: “The fight is here; I need ammunition, not a ride,” according to a senior American intelligence official with direct knowledge of the conversation, who described Zelensky as upbeat.”

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  15. Meanwhile, the sellout of America continues.

    “Asked If Biden Would “Welcome” Iranian Oil, Psaki Says “We’ll Talk…If We Get To That Point”…”

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  16. Qualified?

    Pfffftttt….

    She just checks the black and female boxes, which is all this is about. The fact that she sucks at her job makes her perfect for a Biden appointee. Just another 🤡

    “Biden Supreme Court Nominee Had Rulings Reversed For Overreach…”

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  17. Liar.

    ———-

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  18. ——–

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  19. 🤡🤡🤡🤡🤡

    ——–

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  20. I don’t think Ukrainians need training at this point. More “stuff” is needed. The Russian military isn’t performing as well as they thought they would — part of this is hubris, but running out fuel on the way to Kiev makes no sense. Not sure if US/European military equipment is better than Russian but I’m definitely sure the training is better. The one thing the Russians do better is the Kalashnikov. On the other hand, the Russians didn’t even plan ahead and tanks and other vehicles can be seen on the highway out of gas.

    Trump did hold military aid to Ukraine unless the President came up with dirt on Biden. Whether that lead to less “stuff” being exported to the Ukraine is a matter of debate. Trump’s behaviour right now (as evidenced by his speech at Mar-a-lago) seems to indicate he wouldn’t have done any better than Biden and probably would have been far more reluctant to impose sanctions (if his reluctance in the past is anything to go on)

    As for Biden’s Supreme Court nominee — she seems as qualified as Barrett. I continue to be surprised by the lack of time many Supreme Court justices spend on an actual bench, I would think more experience would be a better idea.

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  21. The Dems “solutions” are just more useless begging.

    ———–

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  22. But no mean tweets, right?

    That’s what’s important…. 🙄

    Enjoy!

    “Russia Threatens Finland and Sweden with ‘Serious Military-Political Repercussions’ if They Join NATO”

    https://legalinsurrection.com/2022/02/russia-threatens-finland-and-sweden-with-serious-military-political-repercussions-if-they-join-nato/

    “Not content with waging war in Ukraine, Russian officials are warning its neighbors Sweden and Finland, that they will face ‘military consequences’ if they join NATO.

    Russia has issued a chilling warning to its neighbors Sweden and Finland, saying both nations will face ‘military consequences’ if they join NATO.

    Russian foreign ministry spokeswoman Maria Zakharova said that such a move in the wake of Russia’s invasion of Ukraine would have ‘serious military-political repercussions.’

    ‘Finland and Sweden should not base their security on damaging the security of other countries and their accession to NATO can have detrimental consequences and face some military and political consequences,’ Zakharova said during a news briefing.

    The foreign ministry later reiterated the threat on Twitter.

    ‘We regard the Finnish government’s commitment to a military non-alignment policy as an important factor in ensuring security and stability in northern Europe,’ the department wrote. ‘Finland’s accession to @NATO would have serious military and political repercussions.’”

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  23. Same as Cavanaugh?

    No. Not even close.

    When will you lefties stop slandering and libeling the man?

    “Biden’s Supreme Court Pick Faces Array of Ethics Questions

    A conflict of interest could trigger recusal from landmark affirmative action case”

    https://freebeacon.com/courts/bidens-supreme-court-pick-faces-array-of-ethics-questions/

    “Supreme Court nominee Judge Ketanji Brown Jackson will face ethics questions about her ties to left-wing public relations professionals, and a conflict of interest that could trigger her recusal from a landmark affirmative action case.

    Jackson, whom President Joe Biden nominated Friday, has come under fire following a report that she retained PR gurus with deep ties in Democratic politics to assist with her prospective nomination. And Jackson’s service on one of Harvard University’s governing boards will prompt questions as to recusing herself from a lawsuit accusing the university of bias against Asians in admissions, which the High Court will hear this fall.

    Republicans are still fine-tuning a response to Jackson’s nomination. Beyond the ethics items, the nationwide spike in violent crime could play a major role in Republican maneuvering around her nomination. Jackson has deep experience in the criminal justice system as a former trial court judge and commissioner on the U.S. Sentencing Commission, a panel that offers guidance on criminal penalties.

    Just hours before Biden officially nominated Jackson, Sen. Chuck Grassley (R., Iowa) sent a letter to Chief Judge Sri Srinivasan pressing for details about Jackson’s work with PR operatives Robert Raben and TJ Ducklo. Raben and Ducklo are Democratic loyalists who, according to a Feb. 16 Politico Report, helped ward off attacks on Jackson and connected reporters with the judge’s allies during the selection process.

    “It would be unusual, if not unique, for a candidate to enlist political communicators to assume this role,” Grassley’s letter reads.

    Grassley is the ranking Republican on the Senate Judiciary Committee and Srinivasan is chief judge of Jackson’s court, the U.S. Court of Appeals for the D.C. Circuit.

    It’s typical for judges jockeying for the Supreme Court to mobilize a volunteer network of ex-colleagues and former clerks to background reporters, lobby decision makers, and assist with nomination logistics. Those personnel, given their working relationship with the judge, are best positioned to speak to the judge’s body of work, their personal characteristics, and their likely profile as a justice.

    PR professionals from partisan Washington, D.C., outfits lack that kind of subject matter expertise and knowledge about the prospective nominee. As such, Republicans want to better understand what Raben and Ducklo were doing on Jackson’s behalf, particularly if they seeded negative stories about her rivals in the press. One of Jackson’s ex-law clerks edited Wikipedia entries for the judge’s two main rivals early in the selection process, according to Politico. The edits meant to paint both contenders as more moderate than Jackson, seen as a progressive stalwart.

    Grassley’s letter also asks whether Raben and Ducklo coordinated with the D.C. Circuit’s media relations office. Ducklo, a former White House press aide, resigned in February 2021 following reports that he threatened a female reporter.

    Apart from the messaging dust up, Jackson will also face ethics and recusal questions related to a lawsuit that alleges that Harvard discriminates against Asian students in admissions. The High Court will hear that case later this year, and the plaintiffs are urging the justices to ban consideration of race in college admissions altogether.”

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  24. About time.

    Make it hurt, or don’t bother.

    “Changing Its Tune, the White House Announces ‘Selected’ Russian Banks to Be Kicked Out of SWIFT”

    https://townhall.com/tipsheet/rebeccadowns/2022/02/26/changing-its-tune-the-white-house-announces-us-to-kick-certain-russian-banks-out-of-swift-n2603843

    “Shortly after a joint statement from the United States and other leaders announced they were removing “select” Russian banks from SWIFT, an “Explainer” report from Reuters was published, referring to the move as a “financial nuclear weapon,” quoting the French foreign minister.

    According to the report:

    The United States, Britain, Europe and Canada committed on Saturday to removing some Russian banks from the SWIFT payments system, deploying what the French finance minister had earlier called a “financial nuclear weapon” because of the damage it would cause to Russia as well as its trading partners.

    The latest round of sanctions came after the U.S. Treasury Department said it was targeting the “core infrastructure” of Russia’s financial system, sanctioning two of its largest banks – state-backed Sberbank (SBER.MM) and VTB (VTBR.MM). Also on the sanctions list are Otkritie, Sovcombank and Novikombank and some senior executives at state-owned banks.

    U.S. banks must sever their correspondent banking ties – which allow banks to make payments between one another and move money around the globe – with Russia’s largest lender, Sberbank, within 30 days.

    Officials in Washington also wielded the government’s most powerful sanctioning tool, adding VTB, Otkritie, Novikombank and Sovcombank to the Specially Designated Nationals (SDN) list. The move effectively kicks the banks out of the U.S. financial system, bans their trade with Americans and freezes their U.S. assets.

    The sanctions will also affect Belarussian banks. ”

    ——–

    This should have happened when the first Russian soldier entered Ukraine.

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  25. “Supreme Court nominee Ketanji Brown Jackson, a politician in robes

    President Biden has delivered exactly who the left demanded”

    —-

    Which is an unqualified hack who checks the right grievance boxes.

    https://www.foxnews.com/opinion/supreme-court-nominee-ketanji-brown-jackson-biden-carrie-severino

    “The selection of Judge Ketanji Brown Jackson of the Court of Appeals for the D.C. Circuit to replace Justice Stephen Breyer on the Supreme Court was widely expected. From the start of his administration, Joe Biden has made it clear that his top priority is paying back the liberal Arabella Advisors dark money network that spent over one billion dollars to help elect him and Senate Democrats.

    These Arabella-advised groups seek nothing less than the appointment of politicians in robes who will rubber stamp their left-wing political agendas from the bench.

    That is what we can expect from a future Justice Ketanji Brown Jackson. President Biden’s announcement, like much of the messaging already coming from her promoters, zips quickly through resume items like her clerkship for Justice Breyer and work in private practice and as a public defender.

    Missing are details like her work drafting an amicus brief on behalf of pro-abortion organizations in a buffer zone case in which she repeatedly disparaged the peaceful and often prayerful clinic protesters as engaging in “in-your-face” and “chaotic” activity that somehow fell short of “pure speech.” She also represented several Guantanamo Bay detainees as a public defender and continued that representation on a pro bono basis after moving back to private practice.

    That was before her tenure as vice chair of the United States Sentencing Commission, during which the Commission reduced its sentencing recommendations for crack-cocaine offenses, advocated the repeal of mandatory-minimum sentences, and raised concerns about demographic disparities in sentencing.

    After her appointment to the district court in 2013, she compiled a record that reflected a hostility to both business and workers. She upheld an Obama administration meat labeling rule against a challenge from meat packers and a forest planning rule that was challenged by a coalition of timber, livestock, and off-highway vehicle organizations concerned about timber harvests falling and forest fires increasing. She also upheld a federal program that set explicit racial preferences in the awarding of government contracts.

    During the Trump administration, she struck down provisions of three executive orders limiting the time labor union officials could spend with union members, the issues that unions could bargain over in negotiations, and the rights of disciplined workers to appeal disciplinary actions—only to be reversed by the D.C. Circuit.

    She halted the Trump Administration’s rule expanding the expedited removal of illegal aliens, ignoring clear limitations on judicial review of such actions, and was again reversed by the D.C. Circuit.”

    ———–

    Clearly not highest court in the land material.

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  26. I compared Jackson to Barrett, not Kavanaugh, He has different issues. If conflict of interest in one case is all they have, they should pass her quickly. Clarence Thomas has set the bar on conflict of interest and recusal and it is high due to his wife’s consulting and lobbying firm and her work with other right wing activists.

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  27. Canada, the US, and the UK have been lobbying for Russia’s removal from SWIFT. The delay has been in the EU, not the Biden admin, as their citizens would suffer consequences as opposed to the Anglo-American world which is tied to Russia energy. Interestingly, the Russians bombed an oil refinery and storage near Kharkiv but have yet to turn off the taps in the oil pipeline which runs through Ukraine from Russia to Germany. The oil supply is running, without a problem, through a war zone.

    I do wonder about “select” banks and if that will be a serious loophole. German banks have many ties to Russia as do a few New York banks, by only having a select banks targeted this would appease the western banking elite. The EU gov’ts may have been surprised by the support Ukraine has received from other Europeans, and now realize SWIFT expulsion despite the consequences is politically feasible.

    I also wonder if Putin underestimated the opposition to the war both abroad and at home. Opposition from progressive western oriented young people is to be expected, but the hard right including some in the military are also not enthusiastic. There’s been a general consensus in the European far right that European wars are “brother” wars and the real enemy is outside the continent. Members of the Russian military — far more right wing and nationalistic than Moscow protesters — are probably not too fond of fighting fellow Slavs and Orthodox as opposed to Muslim Chechens, and other deviant “brown” people. And given the Ukrainian resistance, support for the war will decline further. The longer Ukraine holdout, the greater the chance Putin suffers domestically. Right now, the state run media is keeping the older generation in line with some obvious propaganda. The Nazi claim rings true to many people raised in the Soviet education system which stressed the Great Patriotic War and the traitors within the USSR especially the Ukrainian nationalists based in Lviv. Young people are more inclined to believe the international news they view over the internet.

    Putin’s rant is directed more at Finland than Sweden. Sweden has maintained a policy of heavily armed neutrality for over two centuries but in the last few decades has completed military exercises with NATO and has aligned its weaponry with NATO. This without any comment from Russia and Putin. Finland, however, used to be part of the Russian Empire and after maintaining its independence in WWII was quite differential to the USSR in foreign affairs and even domestically.(Finnish cold war history is fascinating for how delicately they toed the line between independence and subservience) In recent years its become obvious the Finns see themselves as oriented toward western Europe and the relationship with Russia has deteriorated. Putin seeks to keep Finland closer and at very least away from NATO or even the Swedish version of neutrality. And given his rant, its not working — the lure of western Europe is strong.

    The attempt by Americans to tie the present European conflict based on European history and economics to the Biden administration is just weird. The world does not revolve around the White House nor can your domestic opponents be blamed for the behaviour of others.

    Liked by 1 person

  28. Unsettling

    https://www.newsweek.com/vladimir-putin-increasingly-erratic-delusional-condoleezza-rice-1683043

    ++++++++++++++++++++++++++

    Former Secretary of State Condoleezza Rice views Russian President Vladimir Putin’s behavior as increasingly “erratic” and “delusional” as his forces continue an invasion of Ukraine.

    Putin ordered the Russian military to invade Ukraine this past week, with the full-scale assault beginning early Thursday morning. While many analysts initially presented a dire assessment of Ukraine’s ability to defend itself, the Eastern European nation has fought back hard and thus far largely stood its ground against Putin’s military.

    Rice, who served in the administration of former President George W. Bush, is a leading expert on the Soviet Union and Russia, and currently directs the Hoover Institution at Stanford University. During her tenure as secretary of state from 2005 to 2009, she met directly with Putin and other top Russian officials on numerous occasions. …
    +++++++++++++++++++++++++

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  29. Like

  30. Rice is a Russian expert–she even speaks the language, I believe. Thanks for your assessment, HRW. It’s been interesting sifting information. We’re concerned by what the morning will bring.

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  31. I have to agree with Rice and Rubio. I expected Putin to focus on not only occupying Donetsk and Luhansk but extending it to include all of Donbas. Perhaps an attempt to control the Black Sea coast but not an attempt to capture Kyiv and other cities. Its as if he’s believing his own state propaganda. Putin is no longer playing chess while the rest of the world is playing checkers. He’s playing poker now and he went all in on bad hand and Ukraine called his bluff.

    Militarily, the Ukrainians were far more strategic. The Russians possess more tanks and armour than all of NATO. Facing the Russian military on the steppes of the Ukraine would have led to a quick defeat for Ukraine — which Russia may have counted on. Instead Ukraine retreated to the cities where tanks are less effective and left small contingents behind to cut off the Russian supply line. The Russian army is now facing shortages and is facing an enemy on a terrain that favors defense over armour. The strange thing is why the Russia military didn’t predict this as a possible Ukraine strategy. Its the same one Russia has used for centuries — retreat from a superior enemy (Napoleon, Hitler, etc) and stretch their supply lines so they always face the possibility of shortages. And now Ukraine is copying their strategy.

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  32. Like

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