Saturday, 21 July 2018

Stephen Cohen and John Mearsheimer talk sense on Russia

American Scholars Say The Real Threat To The U.S. Is Russophobia (HBO)


President Trump set off a roar of outrage when he defied U.S. intelligence agencies to defend Vladimir Putin and Russia against allegations of meddling. Republican lawmakers joined Democrats to condemn the president's deference to Putin, but his conclusion that the U.S. and Russia are both to blame for the deteriorated relationship is not without defenders.

Take, for example, two American foreign policy experts, Stephen F. Cohen and John Mearsheimer, who both say they agree with Trump on that point, whether you think that makes them Putin's patsy or not. And they're both afraid anti-Russia sentiment in the U.S. will tank Trump's efforts.

Molyneux and Southern in Australia

I don’t agree with them but they are using rational argument and not the tactics used by Antifa thugs.

The Australian police, like the Mafia, are demanding protection money

Stefan Molyneux & Lauren Southern On Sky News About White Genocide And Race & IQ

Australian governments admit Great Barrier Reef is collapsing

Australian governments concede Great Barrier Reef headed for 'collapse'

20 July, 2018

The world’s climate change path means the Great Barrier Reef is headed for “collapse” according to a plan endorsed by state and federal governments that critics say turns a blind eye to Australia’s inadequate effort to cut carbon emissions.

The federal and Queensland governments on Friday released a “new and improved” Reef 2050 Plan to save the iconic natural wonder, which explicitly acknowledges climate change poses a deadly threat to the reef.

The comments depart starkly from previous official efforts to downplay damage wrought on the reef for fear of denting the tourism industry.

Based on current climate projections, the outlook for coral reefs generally is “one of continuing decline over time, and in many regions, including the Great Barrier Reef, the collapse and loss of coral reef ecosystems”, the plan says.

It concedes that consecutive coral bleaching events and other stressors “have fundamentally changed the character of the reef”, which is one of the most diverse ecosystems on the planet.

Coral bleaching is projected to increase in frequency ... those coral reefs that survive are expected to be less biodiverse than in the past,” the plan says.

The reef is the world’s largest living structure, covering an area roughly the size of Italy.

Coral reefs are particularly sensitive to the effects of climate change including higher sea temperatures, ocean acidification and more intense storms and cyclones.

The plan recognised that “holding the global temperature increase to 1.5°C or less is critical to ensure the survival of coral reefs”.

Respected coral scientists have documented in peer-reviewed journals that most of the world’s coral reefs will not survive unless the global temperature increase is limited to 1.5°C above pre-industrial levels,” it said.

However WWF-Australia head of oceans Richard Leck said Australia’s emissions reduction efforts were not even in line with limiting warming to 2°.

He cited a 2017 report by the United Nations environment program that found Australia’s greenhouse gas emissions were set to far exceed its pledge under the Paris accord. This agreement aims to limit global temperature rises this century to well below 2° and to pursue efforts to limit the increase to 1.5°.

It is simply not good enough for the revised plan to suggest the global community must work to limit warming when Australia is not doing its fair share,” Mr Leck said.

The Australian Marine Conservation Society’s reef campaign director Imogen Zethoven said increased recognition of climate change as a threat to the reef must be followed by action.

She said scientific research soon to be published showed that if global temperature rises reached an average 2.4°, the Great Barrier Reef would suffer bleaching events twice a decade from 2041. This would occur as early as 2035 if average temperature rises reached 4.3°.

Bleaching events would be far less frequent under an average temperature rise of 1.6°, Ms Zethoven said.

The onset of twice-a-decade bleaching will then become the onset of annual bleaching and eventually [the entire reef] will be affected,” she said.

Environment and Energy Minister Josh Frydenberg said Australia’s Paris target was ambitious and the nation was “on track to meet and beat its 2020 target, we will also meet our 2030 target”.

The Queensland government has previously said millions of dollars in federal reef spending is essentially useless unless matched by efforts to tackle climate change

Labor environment spokesman Tony Burke said the federal government had neglected the reef by allowing large-scale land clearing in nearby catchments, which damages water quality.

"100 year" drought in New South Wales, Australia

"It's Dire!" - Aussie Farmers Face Worst Drought In 100 Years

20 July, 2018

Farmers are saying the situation they’ve been presented with is “dire.” As they battle the worst drought they’ve faced in 100 years, farming families in central-western New South Wales in Australia are facing ruin.

According to The Guardian, the farmers in the affected region of central and western New South Wales continue to battle a crippling drought that many locals are calling the worst since 1902. In Warrumbungle Shire, where sharp peaks fall away to once fertile farmland, the small town of Coonabarabran is running out of water. The town dam has fallen to 23% of its capacity and residents are living with level-six water restrictions.

There are real fears the town will run dry. Unable to provide food would not only mean financial ruin for the farmers but also less food for those who need it.
It’s a pretty tough old time,” says Coonabarabran farmer Ambrose Doolan. “But if you’re working with your family and everyone is looking out for each other, you count your blessings.”

Last year, the Doolan family recorded their fourth-lowest average rainfall and that poor year has been followed by even drier conditions this year. The family has begun selling whatever stock they can and spends their whole day at feeding the cattle that remain because the pastures have dried up.
Farmers in this part of NSW are importing almost all food for their livestock from as far away as South Australia as prices rise with demand. The continued cost of buying feed is causing many to question their future on the land. The NSW government recently approved an emergency drought relief package of $600m, at least $250m of which will cover low-interest loans to assist eligible farm businesses to recover. The package has been welcomed but, in the words of a local farmer, “it barely touches the sides”. With the prospect of a dry El NiƱo weather pattern hitting the state in spring, the longer-term outlook is dire. The Guardian

As the cost of trucking in food for cattle and sheep increases, so will the cost of the products created from them, hitting consumers’ wallets hard. 

Charities such as Buy a Bale, where people can purchase hay bales for local farmers, have been some assistance, but rain would offer the biggest relief.  While much of NSW experienced a wet start to winter, the darker skies over Coonabarabran have yet to deliver said relief.

And many farmers say they will reject the government’s offer of a loan simply because they are already in a dire amount of debt.

Dust storm causing havoc for drought-stricken farmers in northern NSW

20 July, 2018

A dust storm in northern New South Wales is making already-tough farming conditions even worse for farmers.

Trina Redgwell and her husband Pete live on an 80-hectare Red Angus stud farm on the outskirts of Tamworth.

They woke this morning to find dust swirling around their property and most surfaces of their home covered with it.

"It has been blowing an absolute gale," Ms Redgwell said.

"We've had the paddock ready to go for our winter crop since February but haven't had the rain to plant. We were waiting for just 10 millimetres and we haven't even had that.

"There's obviously no grass cover so the wind is just blowing all our topsoil away, which will only make it worse for us and harder to eventually plant.
"It's just devastating."

Sue Currey in Walgett, NSW, is enduring a dusty day at her place

PHOTO Sue Currey in Walgett, NSW, is enduring a dusty day at her place


There have been reports of the dust cover reaching the Hunter region and as far north as Walgett, but the Riverina and central-west regions appear to have escaped it.

Dust from Mildura storm lingers

Bureau of Meteorology meteorologist Jordan Notara said the dust was a hangover from a storm that whipped over Mildura on Tuesday morning.

"The dust from the storm in Mildura has blown across the state and has continued to linger around," he said.
"For a dusty situation, the key ingredients are dry soil and strong winds, and those conditions currently exist in many parts of regional New South Wales.
"The forecast for today is for windy conditions, which will be blowing additional dust across parts of the state but it should also help to disperse it as well.

"There has also been a small amount of rainfall across New South Wales this morning with more predicted this afternoon, particularly in the northern part of the state, which should help the dust to clear."

Trina Redgwell in Tamworth found this mess in her laundry this morning

PHOTO Ms Redgwell found this mess in her laundry this morning.


That is welcome news for Ms Redgwell, but does not change the fact she is facing a weekend of cleaning.

"When I left for work this morning there was dust everywhere. We had a thick layer of dust along every windowsill and dust all over the floor.

"And to think I vacuumed and mopped on Tuesday."

Antarctic sea ice: This should alarm you

Antarctica in mid-winter

This is what data from the National Snow and Ice Data Center (NSIDC) for today looks like from Antarctica.

It is, on the face of it, alarming to sea sea ice concentrations of less than 100 %.

However, it can be confusing because different sets of data can show different things,

This shows the sea ice extent.

The Butina case

FBI Reveals Maria Butina Traded Sex In Exchange For All 62,984,828 Votes Trump Received In 2016
'Farce': US Authorities Trying to 'Break' Butina – Russian Ambassador

20 July, 2018

Maria Butina was arrested on Sunday by US authorities and charged with conspiracy to act as a foreign agent and with impersonating an agent of a foreign government.

Moscow will demand that Washington release Butina and allow her to return to Russia, the Russian ambassador to the United States, Anatoly Antonov, said.

Anatoly Antonov called the detention of the Russian woman, Maria Butina, a farce and expressed hope that she would not be "broken" in the US.

"This is some farce, some kind of comedy — what is happening today in the United States of America. This is a farce — what they do. These accusations are absolutely illegal," Antonov said, speaking on Friday at the Valdai Discussion Club venue.

He believes that they are trying to "break" her in the United States, citing "attempts to prevent Russian diplomats from meeting with this girl, to break her, as a matter of fact."

"Perhaps she was in our Russian Embassy. You cannot even imagine how many compatriots come to the Russian Embassy for various kinds of cultural events, concerts," Antonov said at the Valdai Discussion Club.

The ambassador added that Butina might have possibly approached him during one such event, and "somebody took a picture of it."

"I do not rule out that tomorrow we will see some kind of 'fake photo news' about the fact that she was talking with me and the day after tomorrow they will claim that she received instructions from me," Antonov added.

The 29-year-old Maria Butina was arrested by US authorities and charged with conspiracy to act as a foreign agent and impersonating an agent of a foreign government.

She denied both charges in federal court in Washington on Wednesday but was remanded in custody without bail, as she is considered a flight risk.

Russian Envoy on Butina's Arrest: US Intel 'Hunting' for Russians Abroad
Butina faces up to 15 years in US jail for acting as an unregistered agent for a foreign government and conspiracy.

Russian diplomats were granted access to Butina on Thursday. The Russian Embassy has also asked the United States for a formal explanation with regard to Maria Butina's detention.

The Russian Foreign Ministry in a post on its official Facebook page said that due to the arrest in the United States of Russian citizen Maria Butina, a flash mob was launched to support her: #FreeMariaButina.

Butina is a longtime advocate of gun rights in Russia who developed ties with US citizens who shared an interest in defending those rights, namely the National Rifle Association (NRA)

Lee Stranahan on the Bill Browder affair

All the @FoxNews hits by @BillBrowder show he’s SCARED of YOU. Here’s what is next...

The NZ media willingly swallows the bait.

Vladimir Putin's self-proclaimed nemesis Bill Browder speaks to Newstalk ZB

A meeting between two of the world's most influential leaders has left one man in particular questioning his future.

Financier Bill Browder is in hiding after a near decade-long cat and mouse chase across the globe with Russian President Vladimir Putin.

Browder - who has exposed corruption, fraud and human rights abuse in Russia - was surprised his name was brought up at Putin's meeting with US President, Donald Trump.

The pair reportedly discussed 'striking a deal' - to swap Browder and his alleged associates - in exchange for US access to 12 Russian agents charged with meddling in the 2016 presidential election campaign.

Putin's self-proclaimed nemesis is confident he won't be handed over if a dirty deal is struck with the US. Browder is not convinced it's a real deal.

He told Newstalk ZB's Larry Williams he immigrated to the UK 29 years ago, and holds British citizenship.

"If Putin wants me he needs to have a meeting with a different head of state, that is Theresa May."

Listen to the full interview with Bill Browder below:

Trump invites Putin to the White House

This dominated the news yesterday.
Don't go!

Putin invited to the White House for Autumn Meeting

Donald Trump has asked his national security adviser to invite Vladimir Putin to the White House in the autumn.

White House press secretary Sarah Sanders said on Twitter that Mr Trump had "agreed to ongoing working level dialogue between the two security council staffs" during Monday's summit between the two leaders in Helsinki.

She added: "President Trump asked (national security adviser John Bolton) to invite President Putin to Washington in the fall and those discussions are already underway."

Earlier on Thursday, the US president had said of Mr Putin: "I look forward to our second meeting."

The news comes as the US director of national intelligence Dan Coats revealed that he does not know what was said between the two leaders during their one-on-one meeting.

Mr Coats said: "I think as time goes by and the president has already mentioned some things that happened in that meeting, I think we will learn more. But that is the president's prerogative."

He also restated the US intelligence assessment about Russian meddling and Moscow's "ongoing, pervasive efforts to undermine our democracy".

On Monday, Mr Trump claimed that he "didn't see any reason" why Russia would be involved in US election meddling, a comment that sparked bemusement and anger among US politicians and commentators.

But the next day he said that he had mis-spoke, saying "would" instead of "wouldn't".

He said what he meant "should have been obvious - I thought it would be obvious but would like to clarify in case it wasn't".

It was the first clarification that had to be issued after a number of deeply controversial comments made by Mr Trump during that news conference.

In the latest, on Thursday, the White House had to distance itself from what he had described as an "incredible offer" made by the Russian president.

That offer was to allow the US to question 12 Russians accused of interfering in the 2016 presidential election, in exchange for Russia being allowed to interview Americans they had accused of unspecified crimes.

Anger grew in the US at the prospect of turning American citizens over to the Russians for questioning, and on Thursday the White House stepped back.

Ms Sanders said: "It is a proposal that was made in sincerity by President Putin, but President Trump disagrees with it.

"Hopefully President Putin will have the 12 identified Russians come to the United States to prove their innocence or guilt."

The Americans in question include former US ambassador to Russia Michael McFaul and alleged crimes include fraud and corruption.

Extreme weather report - 07/19/2018

Climate & Extreme Weather News #129 (11th-19th July 2018)

00:12 Nigeria: Katsina & Abeokuta floods 
04:47 China: Sichuan & Gansu floods 
08:01 Japan: Heatwave 
08:33 South Korea: Heatwave 
09:17 The Philippines: Tropical Storm Son-Tinh 
10:44 India: Kerala & Gujarat monsoon floods 
13:48 Nepal: Floods & landslides 
14:15 The USA: Western wildfires & heatwave; Worcester MA & Washington DC flash floods 
18:36 The Middle East: Heatwave 1
9:06 Spain: Zaragoza flash flood 
21:50 Italy: Valenza flash flood 
23:16 Sweden: Heatwave & wildfires 
24:08 Temperature Data

The Duran on the Deep State coup against Trump

LATEST VIDEO From McCain to Brennan, Deep State soft coup against Trump picks up steam

20 July, 2018

Government officials and mainstream media puppets from left and right are condemning the US President over his press conference with Vladimir Putin.

Leading the charge are the usual Deep State, suspects, starting with John McCain and ending with the man many believe is behind the entire Trump-Russia collusion hoax, former Obama CIA boss John Brennan.'

RT CrossTalk host Peter Lavelle and The Duran’s Alex Christoforou examine the soft coup aimed at removing US President Trump by the November 2018 midterms.

Donald Trump’s press conference performance in Helsinki rises to & exceeds the threshold of “high crimes & misdemeanors.” It was nothing short of treasonous. Not only were Trump’s comments imbecilic, he is wholly in the pocket of Putin. Republican Patriots: Where are you???
Once again, @realDonaldTrump takes to the international stage to embarrass America, undermine our institutions, weaken our alliances, & embrace a dictator. Russia interfered in our elections & attacked our democracy. Putin must be held accountable – not rewarded. Disgraceful.
Missed opportunity by President Trump to firmly hold Russia accountable for 2016 meddling and deliver a strong warning regarding future elections.

This answer by President Trump will be seen by Russia as a sign of weakness and create far more problems than it solves. (1/3)

Ben Sasse: "When the President plays these moral equivalence games, he gives Putin a propaganda win he desperately needs."
Conservative John McCain, who is facing a rare and terminal brain cancer, unleashed a damning statement against Mr Trump’s conference with Mr Putin, describing it as “one of the most disgraceful performances by an American president in memory”.
President Trump proved not only unable, but unwilling to stand up to Putin,” he said.
It is tempting to describe the press conference as a pathetic rout — as an illustration of the perils of under-preparation and inexperience. But these were not the errant tweets of a novice politician. These were the deliberate choices of a president who seems determined to realise his delusions of a warm relationship with Putin’s regime without any regard for the true nature of his rule, his violent disregard for the sovereignty of his neighbours, his complicity in the slaughter of the Syrian people, his violation of international treaties, and his assault on democratic institutions throughout the world.”
The conservative senator’s comments arrived after the US president declined to name Russia as the adversary behind coordinated attacks on the 2016 presidential election.
While discussing whether he thought Russia was behind hacks against the 2016 election — as the US intelligence community has determined —the president said: “I don’t see any reason why it would be.”
Dan Coats [the US Director of National Intelligence] said its Russia. President Putin says its not Russia,” said Mr Trump. “I don’t know why it would be…..I have confidence in both parties. President Putin was extremely strong and powerful in his denial today.”
That set off a wave of condemnations from Democrats and Republicans alike.
President Trump’s press conference with Putin was an embarrassing spectacle,” Bernie Sanders wrote in a tweet. “Rather than make clear that interference in our elections is unacceptable, Trump instead accepted Putin’s denials and cast doubt on the conclusions of our intelligence community. This is not normal.”
Jeff Flake, one of the only frequent Republican critics of Mr Trump in Congress, said the conference was “shameful” in a statement he posted across social media.
I never thought I would see the day when our American President would stand on the stage with the Russian President and place blame on the United States for Russian aggression,” he said. “This is shameful.”
Former CIA Director John Brennan released a statement calling for Mr Trump’s impeachment and describing his comments as “treasonous”.
Donald Trump’s press conference performance in Helsinki rises to & exceeds the threshold of ‘high crimes and misdemeanours,'” Mr Brennan wrote on Twitter. “It was nothing short of treasonous. Not only were Trump’s comments imbecilic, he is wholly in the pocket of Putin. Republican Patriots: Where are you???”
Elizabeth Warren also slammed the president for failing to hold Mr Putin accountable, writing on Twitter: “Russia interfered in our elections & attacked our democracy. Putin must be held accountable – not rewarded.”
Disgraceful,” she concluded.
However, Mr Trump’s typical roster of critics weren’t the only legislators rebuking his bizarre denials of US intelligence. Lindsey Graham also criticised Mr Trump’s performance, adding that his denial of US intelligence will “be seen by Russia as a sign of weakness and create far more problems than it solves”.
Missed opportunity by President Trump to firmly hold Russia accountable for 2016 meddling and deliver a strong warning regarding future elections,” he said.
The Republican senator added a suggestion to Mr Trump: review the soccer ball Mr Putin gave to him as a gift for “listening devices” and “never allow it in the White House.”
Thomas Pickering, a regarded statesman and the former US ambassador to Russia, told MSNBC that he was in utter disbelief after the press conference was held on Monday.
It’s a breathtaking denial of something that clearly is so obviously true,” he said. ”it represents the epitome of President Trump’s effort at self-promotion over the notion of defending the national interest of the United States.”
Mark Warner, a Virginia senator, also suggested Mr Trump committed a clear violation of his responsibilities as president.
Mr Trump committed “a breach of his duty to defend our country against its adversaries,” Mr Warner said. ”If the President cannot defend the United States and its interests in public, how can we trust him to stand up for our country in private?”
Meanwhile the latest Deep State leak, via the NYT, claims that US President Trump was told by Obama holdovers that Putin was involved in cyberattacks during the 2016 election. US intelligence told Trump this information days before the inauguration.
The same liberal hacks who illegally leaked this information want Americans to trust them as they continue to destroy this duly elected president.
President Trump on Wednesday told CBS anchor Jeff Glor that he has no confidence in the tainted intelligence by far left hacks Clapper, Brennan and Comey.
And, once again, the timing of this leak is not an accident.
Liberals are outraged that President Trump refused to chest bump Putin in Helsinki.
The deep state leaked this information to pile on the Republican president.
The New York Times reported…
Two weeks before his inauguration, Donald J. Trump was shown highly classified intelligence indicating that President Vladimir V. Putin of Russia had personally ordered complex cyberattacks to sway the 2016 American election.
The evidence included texts and emails from Russian military officers and information gleaned from a top-secret source close to Mr. Putin, who had described to the C.I.A. how the Kremlin decided to execute its campaign of hacking and disinformation.
Mr. Trump sounded grudgingly convinced, according to several people who attended the intelligence briefing. But ever since, Mr. Trump has tried to cloud the very clear findings that he received on Jan. 6, 2017, which his own intelligence leaders have unanimously endorsed.

CrossTalk on Russophobia: Denying Detente

U.S. president Donald Trump has repeatedly said he wants better relations with Russia. He did finally have his long sought summit with Vladimir Putin. Both presidents called it a success. The American political class and corporate media call the Helsinki summit a failure and Trump even worse. Are the United States and Russia destined to be enemies forever?

CrossTalking with Brian Becker, Earl Rasmussen, and Dan Kovalik.