(a) Unreal. The Babylon Bee can retire now.
She almost pulled it off. The vice-president almost got through her Asia trip without any embarrassing incidents. She is flying back to Washington, D.C. as I write this. Kamala ended her trip to Asia with a gaffe. In the speech she delivered at the DMZ, the vice-president made an unfortunate gaffe when she said the United States has a “strong alliance” with “the Republic of North Korea.”
Creepy Joe and Kackala: dumb and dumber.
(b) There is a Russian word called vranyo that idiomatically means: a lie that everybody knows is a lie, and that the liar knows everybody knows is a lie, but that everybody pretends to believe. (An Arab version of vranyo would be the assertion that there never was a Jewish Temple in Jerusalem.)
This shamferendum in Donetsk, Lugansk, Zaporizhia, and Kherson is classic vranyo in action — a laughably transparent pretext for the Anschluss of these four regions of Ukraine to Mother Russia.
Vladimir Putin will officially add territories of Ukraine to Russia at a signing ceremony in the Kremlin on Friday, his spokesman has said.
Moscow-backed officials in four regions of Ukraine said so-called referendums had delivered overwhelming support for joining Russia.
The polls in the self-declared republics of Luhansk and Donetsk and the regions of Kherson and Zaporizhzhia have been slammed by Ukraine and the West as “shams”.
Most of the world will not recognise the results which come after armed officials were seen going door-to-door collecting votes. Polling closed on Tuesday afternoon after five days of voting.
Putin will also give a major speech on Friday following the signing ceremony at the Kremlin’s St George’s Hall, and will meet with Moscow-appointed administrators of the Ukrainian regions.
Tim Sebastian, who used to host the interview show Hardtalk on BBC, here interviews a Russian diplomat who resigned his position in disgust over the Ukraine invasion. Very much worth watching.
(c) The ‘partial mobilization’ is backfiring big time. “What’s gone on in Ukraine, as far as most Russians are concerned, has been somebody else’s problem. But now mass mobilisation is everybody’s problem.”
(d) And now we come to the subject of Georgia Meloni, with breathless media references to it being almost exactly the 100th anniversary of Mussolini’s March on Rome. Never mind that:
- her main opposition, the Partito Democratico [heh!], can trace its ancestry back to the PCI (the Italian Communist Party). “But they are reformed!” you say. Well, if Meloni is beyond the pale for briefly having been a member of MSI, then why not apply the same standard to adherents of the main competing brand of totalitarian collectivism.
- if the antiDemocrat machine wants to find a fascist to go fight, well, I can help them find one. At Goodwill you can pick up a detection device for cheap — it’s called a mirror.
(e) Oldie but goodie from Instapundit. And yes, I actually read The New Class.
Much of the current tension in America and in many other democracies is in fact a product of a class struggle. It’s not the kind of class struggle that Karl Marx wrote about, with workers and peasants facing off against rapacious capitalists, but it is a case of today’s ruling class facing disaffection from its working class.
In the old Soviet Union, the Marxists assured us that once true communism was established under a “dictatorship of the proletariat,” the state would wither away and everyone would be free. In fact, however, the dictatorship of the proletariat turned into a dictatorship of the party hacks, who had no interest whatsoever in seeing their positions or power wither.
Yugoslav dissident Milovan Djilas called these party hacks the “New Class,” noting that instead of workers and peasants against capitalists, it was now a case of workers and peasants being ruled by a managerial new class of technocrats who, while purporting to act for the benefit of the workers and peasants, somehow wound up with the lion’s share of the goodies. Workers and peasants stood in long lines for bread and shoddy household goods, while party leaders and government managers bought imported delicacies in special, secret stores. (In a famous Soviet joke, then-leader Leonid Brezhnev shows his mother his luxury apartment, his limousine, his fancy country house and his helicopter only to have her object: “But what if the communists come back?”) . . .
Djilas’ work was explosive — he was jailed — because it made clear that the workers and peasants had simply replaced one class of exploiters with another. […]
But the New Class isn’t limited to communist countries, really. Around the world in the postwar era, power was taken up by unelected professional and managerial elites. To understand what’s going on with [then-]President Donald Trump and his opposition, and in other countries as diverse as France, Hungary, Italy and Brazil, it’s important to realize that the post-World War II institutional arrangements of the Western democracies are being renegotiated, and that those democracies’ professional and managerial elites don’t like that very much, because they have done very well under those arrangements. And, like all elites who are doing very well, they don’t want that to change.
[…A]fter the turn of the millennium, other Americans, much like the workers and peasants in the old Soviet Union, started to notice that while the New Class was doing quite well (America’s richest counties now surround Washington, D.C.), things weren’t going so well for them. And what made it more upsetting was that — while the Soviet Union’s apparatchiks at least pretended to like the workers and peasants — members of America’s ruling class seemed to view ordinary Americans with something like contempt, using terms such as “bitter clingers,” “deplorables” and flyover people.
[…] Talking about the yellow-vest movement, French geographer Christophe Guilluy observes: “Immediately, the protesters were denounced as xenophobes, anti-Semites and homophobes. The elites present themselves as anti-fascist and anti-racist, but this is merely a way of defending their class interests. It is the only argument they can muster to defend their status, but it is not working anymore.”
That’s right. It’s class war masquerading as something else, but people have seen through the mask.
And speaking of things not going so well for the rest of us, Rasmussen Reports:
With the stock market tumbling, a majority of Americans think it’s likely there’s an economic depression in the future.
The latest Rasmussen Reports national telephone and online survey finds that 57% of American Adults believe it’s likely that, over the next few years, the United States will enter a 1930s-like Depression, including 21% who think a depression is Very Likely. Thirty-two percent (32%) don’t think a depression is likely, and another 12% are not sure. These findings haven’t changed much since May, when 55% said a depression was likely in the next few years.
[*] Which actually racked up an even higher body count than National Socialism, though not for want of trying on the part of the latter. I hate both Communism and National Socialism with the passion of a thousand suns — the latter hatred is just more personal.