Welcome to Sott.net
Tue, 06 Jun 2023
The World for People who Think

Society's Child

Take 2

Disney fires top execs after box-office flop

Angus MacLane and Galyn Susman
© AFP / Alberto E. Rodriguez
Angus MacLane and Galyn Susman attend the premiere of 'Lightyear' at the El Capitan Theatre in Hollywood, California, June 8, 2022
Disney's Pixar Animation Studios has slashed 75 jobs, including the top crew members of 2022's 'Lightyear', which was blocked from release in 17 countries because of its depiction of a homosexual kiss and ridiculed by conservatives in the West.

'Lightyear' director Angus MacLane and producer Galyn Susman were let go late last month, Reuters reported on Saturday. While MacLane was a relative newcomer to the studio, Susman had been at Pixar since the original 'Toy Story' movie in 1995. Including the two executives, a total of 75 positions were axed at Pixar.

Released last June, 'Lightyear' cost $200 million to produce, but only managed to pull in $226 million in worldwide ticket sales. Its depiction of a homosexual relationship between two female characters saw it banned in 16 Muslim countries and in China. These bans reportedly cost Disney $100 million in potential profits.

While the homosexual scene was initially cut from the movie several months before release, Disney's then-CEO Bob Chapek insisted that it be reinserted in response to Florida's Parental Rights in Education Bill. This legislation, signed into law by Governor Ron DeSantis last March, prohibits teachers in Florida from discussing sexuality and gender identity with children in kindergarten through third grade.

Russian Flag

'Waging Peace': How a tour of Russia showed me that propaganda perverts reality in the minds of Americans

© Andrey Bortko/Sputnik
Former United Nations Chief Weapons Inspector on Iraq Scott Ritter talks to readers during the presentation of his book Disarmament Race, dedicated to nuclear security, at the Pobeda Culture and Leisure Centre on May 1, 2023, in Novosibirsk, Russia.
My month-long tour of the country was an eye-opening experience, and so was the hostility that met me back home...

At the end of April, my daughter Victoria and I departed New York City's JFK airport, ultimately bound for the Siberian city of Novosibirsk, the first destination of what would be a 26-day, 12-city tour of Russia.

While the official purpose of the visit was business (I was promoting my book, Disarmament Race, which has been published in the Russian language by the Komsomolskaya Pravda publishing house), the unofficial - and for me, most important - purpose of the visit was an opportunity to better understand today's Russia. To do this, I was going to dig deeper into Russian history, get a better grasp of the culture, and, in the process, try to understand the "Russian soul" in as precise a manner as possible.

Comment: Articles by Scott Ritter:


Harvard hires failed Chicago Mayor Lori Lightfoot for teaching gig

© Unknown
Former Chicago Mayor Lori Lightfoot
Failed Chicago Mayor Lori Lightfoot will be taking a teaching role as a Menschel Senior Leadership Fellow at the Harvard T.H. Chan School of Public Health.

Lightfoot, the first Chicago mayor to lose re-election in 40 years, will teach a course titled "Health Policy, and Leadership."

Under Lightfoot's leadership, crime and poverty in the Windy City skyrocketed, while public school test scores plummeted.

In its announcement, Harvard claimed:
"Lightfoot led a coordinated, citywide response across government, business, and community organizations to safeguard public health and minimize economic impact from the COVID-19 pandemic."
Lightfoot, who left office on May 15, received heavy criticism for her strict COVID policies and was slammed for violating them by getting a haircut at the height of pandemic lockdowns after telling residents to remain at home.

After her loss in the primary, Lightfoot attempted to blame her defeat on racism rather than her failed policies.

Comment: Harvard chose a winner:


Under-construction bridge collapses in India for second time in a year

Bridge india
This photo taken on June 4, 2023, shows an under construction bridge collapsing into the river Ganges in Bhagalpur district in India's eastern state of Bihar.
An Indian state government on Monday ordered a probe into the collapse of a portion of an under-construction bridge over the Ganges River over the weekend, the second time the structure has crashed in a year.

No casualties were reported with no movement of people or vehicles on the bridge when nearly 250 meters (820 feet) of the concrete surface connecting pillars crashed into the river on Sunday.

Videos of the collapse spread on social media.

Comment: Whilst this may be the second time this has collapsed, just a few days ago there prior there was a significant rail disaster in the country: India train crash: at least 288 killed and 803 injured in Odisha state

See also:

Eye 1

Irish farmers revolt over gov'ts 'green' plan to cull 195,000 cattle, 'retirement scheme' offered to willing farmers

dairy farmer ireland
© Getty INUTAN/Gamma-Rapho via Getty Imagesmages
A dairy farmer tends to his herd on the Beara peninsula in West Cork
Irish farmers are rebelling against a proposal to cull tens of thousands of cattle a year to help Ireland meet its climate change targets.

The Irish government wants to reduce emissions from farming by a quarter by 2030. Media reports last week suggested that one option being considered was to reduce the national dairy herd by 10 per cent - meaning a cull of 65,000 cows a year for three years, at a cost of €200 million (£170 million) annually.

One Irish politician described the plan as "absolute madness" and there are warnings that some farmers will refuse, and others will leave the sector, if an order is introduced.

Comment: There shouldn't be a cull at all, because all signs point to an increasingly vulnerable food supply chain, with shortages and soaring prices making animal protein - which is critical for health - a luxury for an increasing number of people:


Swiss capital votes for legal cocaine, follows government permission for sale of cannabis

© Jennifer Gauthier, Reuters
After testing the controlled sale of cannabis, Bern's city parliament now wants to give residents access to harder substances
The municipal council of the Swiss capital Bern voted on Thursday to extend the trial sale of cannabis to cocaine. The drug will not be immediately legalized, however, without the federal government's permission.

The motion, which was introduced by the Alternative Left party, passed by 43 votes to 18, Swiss news outlet SRF reported on Friday. The motion was opposed by center-right and religious councilors, but supported by leftists and some members of the center-left Social Democratic Party.

Bern voted last year to test the controlled sale of cannabis, and was granted permission by the federal government last month. Cannabis sales are expected to begin in Bern this fall, and have already started in Basel, Zurich, and Lausanne.

Comment: It's notable that this comes on the heels of Canada - which is fast becoming euthanasia capital of the world - granting licenses for the manufacture of cocaine, heroin and other hard drugs, as well as Australia authorising the use of MDMA therapeutically.

Whilst there's strong reasons to conclude the West's 'war on drugs' was an outright failure, and in some instances it was wholly unjust - consider the medicinal uses of cannabis, as one example - this move to relax drug laws also comes at a time of societal disintegration and other, evidently nefarious, moves by the establishment against the general populace. And so one could reasonably ask: what's in it for the authorities? A drugged up, addicted, populace, would certainly be easier to control. In addition, the liberalisation of drug laws comes at a time when numerous governments are 'liberalising' their euthanasia policies:

Oil Well

Oil price rises after Saudi plan to further cut output from July

oil saudi arabia
Saudi Aramco's Al-Khurais central oil processing facility, 160km east of the capital Riyadh
Saudi Arabia announced on Sunday it would cut one million barrels of oil a day in July in a bid to boost sagging oil prices.

The latest cuts would take Saudi oil production to the lowest level for several years as the kingdom seeks to put a floor on prices in an attempt to fund an ambitious spending programme at home.

The kingdom's energy minister, Prince Abdulaziz bin Salman, Opec's de facto leader, said he "will do whatever is necessary to bring stability to this market" following a contentious OPEC+ meeting over the weekend.

Despite several attempts to reduce oil supply in the markets to keep prices steady over the last 10 months, the moves have largely come to naught.

Comment: Meanwhile: Russian oil floods global markets via major Asian intermediaries

Cardboard Box

UK suffering another egg shortage, cost jumps 30%, low supplies could last months as producers exit market

Waitrose bare shelves egg shortage

Shoppers have reported empty shelves at Waitrose as the shortage of eggs continues
Shoppers are reporting empty shelves at Waitrose amid reports that egg shortages will continue until the autumn despite the threat of avian flu outbreaks falling.

Comment: Note that Waitrose is one of the higher end supermarkets where shoppers expect a particularly high level of quality and service, this shortage will not go down well with customers, and so one would presume that it's not for lack of trying that the supermarket was out of stock.

Availability for eggs remains patchy and varies from one retailer to the next.

But even shoppers who do find they are able to procure a pack of eggs might be in for a surprise when they see the shelf price.

Customers attempting to purchase eggs from Tesco online recently were greeted with a message notifying them that the product is 'subject to availability' and they 'may receive a different box' to that which they ordered.

The supermarket's medium free range eggs were reportedly out of stock online in packs of six.

Comment: Due to the high cost of food, with meat and fish becoming 'premium' products these days, it's likely that many people will defer to lower cost alternatives for their protein, and taste, needs, such as to eggs. Even in France, where shoppers consume greater amounts of fresh, not processed, foods (see Tweet below), consumers are significantly reducing their purchases of meat and fish. However, with increasing chronic egg shortages, there aren't many animal protein alternatives left. And the establishment's propagandised alternatives of insects or vegetarianism pose a serious threat to health.

Notably, egg shortages and fires at chicken farms have been occuring in a number of Western nations:

Red Flag

A 14-year-old is dead. Her dad blames 'safer supply' drugs provided by the gov't

Kamilah Sword
© National Post
Greg Sword (left) and his daughter Kamilah Sword, 14. Kamilah died from an overdose after becoming addicted to hydromorphone, a drug commonly prescribed as part of safer supply programs.
Fourteen-year-old Kamilah Sword overdosed and died last August after becoming addicted to hydromorphone, a drug which her friends say they often acquired through drug users who were defrauding Vancouver's safer supply programs. Her father, who wants answers for his daughter's death, feels "brushed aside" by the government and worries about how the investigation of his daughter's death is being handled.

Last week, he shared his story and introduced me to Kamilah's closest friends, and their parents, who explained how hydromorphone abuse has ravaged their families and contributed to a new generation of opioid addicts in Port Coquitlam, B.C.

Collectively, they painted a disturbing portrait of a community where the abuse of "dillies" (the slang term for Dilaudid, a brand of hydromorphone) is ubiquitous among teenagers, thanks, in part, they say to the wide-scale defraudment of "safer supply" programs.

As I reported in an investigative story, published earlier this month by the National Post, Canada's "safer supply" experiment, which was widely scaled up in 2020, has been a disaster.

The program was supposed to reduce overdoses and deaths by providing drug users with free hydromorphone, a pharmaceutical opioid as potent as heroin, as an alternative to potentially tainted street substances. In practice, these opioids are often being resold (diverted) on the black market to fund the purchase of harder street drugs, primarily fentanyl.


EU member state deletes peace proposal after pressure from Ukraine

Hungary map of Ukraine
© Magyarország Kormánya /YouTube
Screenshot from the video clip posted on YouTube by the Hungarian government.
Hungary altered a political video ad after Ukraine accused it of a "provocative act".

The Hungarian government has deleted a video clip calling for peace in Ukraine, which identified the Crimean peninsula as part of Russia following backlash from Kiev.

Earlier this week, the Hungarian government released a 30-second political ad showing, among other things, a schematic map outlining Ukraine's borders, which did not include Crimea. The peninsula overwhelmingly voted to join Russia in 2014 following a Western-backed coup in Kiev. Neither Ukraine nor its Western backers have recognized the referendum's results.

In an apparent hint towards a possible international peace summit, another part of the video also featured a conference room with the flags of Russia, Ukraine, the US and several other countries.

Comment: See also: