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Fri, 02 Jun 2023
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Portland considers banning daytime homeless camps to address 'humanitarian catastrophe'

homeless portland
© AP
Frank, who is experiencing homelessness, sits in his tent in Portland, Ore., next to the Willamette River on June 5, 2021.
Portland officials are mulling a proposal to ban daytime homeless camps in most public spaces as the West Coast city struggles to get a handle on the ballooning number of people living on the streets.

Homeless people would need to clear their camps every morning by 8 a.m., picking up all their belongings and trash before they could settle down again at 8 p.m., according to the proposal.

The ban would extend to city parks, near schools, day cares, construction sites and some sidewalks, according to the plan brought forward by Mayor Ted Wheeler.

Comment: See also:

People 2

Disney faces backlash after mustached man in a dress is seen welcoming little girls into boutique

trans disney worker
Immense scrutiny erupted across the internet on Tuesday after a video surfaced of a cross-dressing male with a mustache greeting little girls as a "fairy godmother" at Disneyland's Bibbidi Bobbidi Boutique.

The video, which has since gone viral with more than 7 million views, shows the Disney employee named "Nick" wearing a pink and blue dress with matching makeup and welcoming little girls into the store. His title at the Bibbidi Bobbidi Boutique, which transforms kids ages 3 to 12 into princesses or knights with makeovers, is called a "Fairy Godmother's Apprentice."

"So, my name is Nick, I am one of the Fairy Godmother's Apprentices," Nick said, smiling at the little girl with a face full of pink and blue makeup.

Comment: See also:

People 2

French consumers tighten belts as food prices soar

Carrefour supermarket france
© Reuters
A checkout-free Carrefour store in Paris, France.
France prides itself on taking its food seriously, but many consumers are now tightening their belts or skimping on quality, hit by a record inflation rate that threatens to serve up another political headache for the government.

Adjusted for inflation, household spending on food fell year on year by a record 10 percent in April, to its lowest since March 2009, data from statistics agency INSEE showed on Wednesday.

That followed a near 16 percent annual increase in food prices - another record - in March. The rate eased back in May, but only to a still appetite-killing 14 percent.

"I go for the cheapest things, things on sale or generic brands. I compare prices per kilo or per item, which I didn't necessarily do before," Sandra Hamadouche, a 38-year-old mother of two, told Reuters in the Paris suburb of Joinville-Le-Pont.

Comment: In response to the rapidly deteriorating standard of living, countries across Europe, including Spain, and the UK, have seen some of the biggest protests and strikes in many years:


Huge fire engulfs paper warehouse in Germany

fire berlin
© Twitter - Berliner Feuerwehr
A fire in a paper waste warehouse on Lahnstrasse in Neukölln sent black clouds billowing into the sky above Berlin.
Even those who missed the giant plumes of black smoke billowing up into the the Berlin sky might have been alerted to the fire that broke out in a paper waste warehouse on Lahnstrasse in Neukölln yesterday by a frantic beeping coming from their smartphone: the fire brigade sent an official warning yesterday evening, about an hour after the start of the blaze. It's not yet clear what caused the fire, but this was a major operation.

A 6,000 square meter warehouse storing large quantities of extremely flammable material (paper, to be precise) caught fire on the premises of the Remondis disposal company on Lahnstrasse. The building was entirely destroyed. Firefighters are still on site and are expecting to carry out post-extinguishing work until noon on Thursday.

Comment: See also: TWO more huge fires today in US: Brooklyn timber mill, warehouse in Florida killing 2


Three years later, no justice for BLM insurrection in DC

blm protest
"Our office prosecutes all acts of violence, regardless of political motivation, the same."

So said U.S. Attorney for the District of Columbia Matthew Graves — under oath, mind you, and with a straight face — during a hearing of the House Oversight Committee earlier this month.

Representative Paul Gosar (R-Ariz.) questioned Graves' disparate treatment of Black Lives Matters rioters who terrorized Washington, D.C., in 2020 versus Trump supporters involved in the events of January 6, 2021.

Although the start of both incidents was a mere seven months apart, they are a world away in terms of accountability.

In what Graves calls the "Capitol Siege" investigation, more than 1,000 Trump supporters have been criminally charged. Graves, a Biden appointee, has promised to double that caseload before he's finished. His office announces new arrests every week.

That, however, is not the case for rioters who caused far more violence and inflicted far more damage in the nation's capital in 2020. The rioting that began on May 29, 2020 at Lafayette Square prompted the lockdown of the White House; Donald Trump, his wife, and teenage son were ushered to an underground bunker for their safety as looters and arsonists repeatedly tried to scale the fence and break through police barricades erected outside the White House.

Cardboard Box

Cargill to sell China poultry business as high costs reduce profitability and sales fall

© REUTERS/Denis Balibouse/File Photo
A Cargill logo is pictured on the Provimi Kliba and Protector animal nutrition factory in Lucens, Switzerland, September 22, 2016.
Cargill Inc. is selling its poultry farming and processing business in China, the world's biggest meat market as weak demand and high costs continue to pressure margins.

The world's largest agricultural commodities trader has agreed to sell its Cargill Protein China operations to private equity firm DCP Capital, a company spokesperson said, without disclosing terms. The deal is expected to close in 2023, subject to regulatory approval.

The sale comes as meatpackers like Cargill struggle with thinning margins, and inflation that's eroding demand. Relatively high grain prices are also boosting the cost of feeding animals, all challenges new Cargill's Chief Executive Officer Brian Sikes will have to tackle.

Comment: A similar scenario of rising costs, reduced demand, and producers reducing stock, is playing out elsewhere on the planet, with the ultimate result being that the food supply chain becomes ever more vulnerable. Although it's notable that China has been proactive in its attempts to support farmers and shore up stocks.

Meanwhile, and particularly in the West, there's highly suspect food processing plant fires; supermarkets refusing to pay producers for the cost of production and producers in turn reducing the number of stock; extreme weather and erratic seasons wiping out harvests; outbreaks of animal diseases, and the sometimes excessive response by the authorities; lockdown backlogs and their subsequent culls; soaring inflation and energy prices, as well as a draconian crackdown by, primarily Western, governments, that are clearly intended to throw farmers out of business; all of which, taken together, it seems that a collapse of the food supply chain is all but inevitable.

Further to this, it's also notable that Cargill would sell off now, what with the significant uptick in provocations by the US against China:


AI poses 'extinction' risk to humanity, say experts - but Bill Gates says different

machine learning
Global leaders should be working to reduce "the risk of extinction" from artificial intelligence technology, a group of industry chiefs and experts warned on Tuesday.

A one-line statement signed by dozens of specialists, including Sam Altman whose firm OpenAI created the ChatGPT bot, said tackling the risks from AI should be "a global priority alongside other societal-scale risks such as pandemics and nuclear war".

ChatGPT burst into the spotlight late last year, demonstrating an ability to generate essays, poems and conversations from the briefest of prompts -- and sparking billions of dollars of investment into the field.

But critics and insiders have raised the alarm over everything from biased algorithms to the possibility of massive job losses as AI-powered automation seeps into daily life.

Comment: And, predictably - because Bill Gates never met a potentially destructive technology he didn't like - he had this to say:
As CNBC reports, Microsoft cofounder Bill Gates predicted that during the next few years, AIs will "be as good a tutor as any human ever could."

"At first, we'll be most stunned by how it helps with reading — being a reading research assistant — and giving you feedback on writing," he told a crowd during his keynote speech at a digital learning conference in San Diego last week.

"If you just took the next 18 months, the AIs will come in as a teacher's aide and give feedback on writing," he continued. "And then they will amp up what we're able to do in math."

Bill & AI 4Eva

It's far from the first time that Gates has voiced his excitement over the tech.

Just last month, Gates wrote on his blog that "the age of AI has begun," called OpenAI's GPT large language model "revolutionary," and predicted that "whatever limitations [AI] has today will be gone before we know it."

Nearly two decades before OpenAI released its blockbuster AI chatbot and scored a lucrative Microsoft deal, Gates talked up the then-futuristic-sounding field of machine learning to the New York Times.

"If you invent a breakthrough in artificial intelligence, so machines can learn, that is worth ten Microsofts," he told the paper back in 2004.


Then in 2019, Gates invested in the startup Luminous, which is building a light-based AI accelerator chip that will purportedly power the supercomputers necessary to sustain the AIs of the future.

If his comments in recent months are any indication, it's clear that Gates believes we really are on the precipice of a true quantum leap in AI tech — and while he feels like the outlook is rosy, it's hard to say whether or not we agree with him.

Stock Down

Retailer Kohl's stock crashes following backlash over kids' Pride gear

Kohl's Pride clothing infants
© Kohl's website/screenshot
The Kohl's website displays various clothing items for newborns and infants.
Retail giant Kohl's is facing significant backlash after conservatives highlighted the company's Pride gear intended for children. The collection includes a onesie decorated with cartoon figures carrying a rainbow-colored flag and is aimed at celebrating Pride Month.

Their stock crashed roughly five percent on Tuesday following the controversy.

Comment: In answer to the last question, an open article in PubMed (of all places!) has something to say about it:
Mothers of boys with gender identity disorder: a comparison of matched controls


This pilot study compared mothers of boys with gender identity disorder (GID) with mothers of normal boys to determine whether differences in psychopathology and child-rearing attitudes and practices could be identified. Results of the Diagnostic Interview for Borderlines and the Beck Depression Inventory revealed that mothers of boys with GID had more symptoms of depression and more often met the criteria for Borderline Personality Disorder than the controls. Fifty-three percent of the mothers of boys with GID compared with only 6% of controls met the diagnosis for Borderline Personality Disorder on the Diagnostic Interview for Borderlines or had symptoms of depression on the Beck Depression Inventory. Results of the Summers and Walsh Symbiosis Scale suggested that mothers of probands had child-rearing attitudes and practices that encouraged symbiosis and discouraged the development of autonomy.
And from a 2020 article in American Thinker:
A 1991 study may have found the root cause of transgenderism

By Andrea Widburg

If you're on the left, you believe that the traditional idea that humans come in two sexes (male and female) is not only outdated, but evil. Instead, leftism insists that human sex identification is an infinitely malleable matter of personal choice, untethered to genetics. Conservatives respond that it's not a matter of choice. Instead, people who claim to be transgendered almost invariably have complex mental issues, often stemming from their upbringing. A recently recovered 1991 study supports conservatives.

During his pre-election town hall, Joe Biden happily accepted that little boys and girls know exactly what sex they really are (separate from their biological sex) and promised that he will ensure that the law lets them make those choices. By saying this, Biden implied he would encourage allowing children to opt into dangerous hormone treatments and mutilating surgery. That's not just demented; that's evil.

Just a couple of weeks ago, HBO premiered a documentary about allegedly transgender kids. Footage made the rounds of a scene in which a woman tries to force her manifestly six-year-old son, Phoenix, to stand in front of an LGBTQ church and proudly identify himself as a girl. You can see the clip at the beginning of this Matt Walsh video:

Walsh goes on to point out some important insights about the HBO show:
1. The mothers are crazy. (When Phoenix's parents get divorced and Phoenix finally insists he really is a boy, his mother feels better because she had worked through her issues. Another boy, whose mother insists he is a girl and lives through his fame, hates his female persona.)

2. The fathers are nonentities or invisible men who go along with overwhelming mothers. They are eunuchs and seem fine with having their sons take that lack of masculinity one step farther.

3. Many of the children come from broken or breaking homes.

4. Even parents who aren't on board with their children's transgenderism go along meekly with the social pressure.
I agree with everything Walsh says. I have said for years that transgenderism is a leftist attack on masculinity and a creepy, pedophile-like way to take control of children's sexuality.

What I said doesn't preclude people having body dysmorphia, a term that means they have a wildly incorrect view of their bodies. Before transgenderism became a "thing," the most commonly known version of this disorder was anorexia nervosa, which saw perfectly healthy young women starve themselves to death because they saw themselves as fat.

Thankfully, we recognized that anorexia was a mental illness and tried to re-orient these women's minds. If we had treated anorexia the same way we treat the disorder of "transgenderism," we would have offered these women dieting tips and stomach-stapling.

Walt Heyer, who was one of the first Americans to take hormones and have surgery to "change" from a man to a woman, realized that (a) the medical community unconscionably pushed him into these drastic changes and (b) the problem was with his upbringing, not his misgendering. In his case, he blamed his grandmother, who gave him big ego strokes for wearing girls' clothes and being feminine.

Based on my own experiences living in the San Francisco Bay Area in the company of a lot of people living on the LGBTQ spectrum, I think Heyer's right. Probably 70% of the people I know on that spectrum had suffered childhood traumas, whether it was absent fathers, overbearing mothers, or abuse at a parents' hands.

It may be that those overbearing mothers, the same ones Matt Walsh focused on, are the biggest factor in transgenderism. Someone trolling through the literature discovered a 1991 study in the Journal of the American Academy of Child and Adolescent Psychiatry that compared mothers of boys with gender identity issues to mothers of "normal boys." (Yes, just 29 years ago, it was still "normal" to call a boy a boy.) What the study revealed is that, for the boys who identified as girls, 53% of their mothers had Borderline Personality Disorders. For boys who knew that they were boys, only 6% of the mothers had Borderline Personality Disorders.

Seemingly, when boys are transgender, it's not because, baby, they were born that way. More often than not, it's because they had the spectacular bad luck to be born to a mother with a serious mental disorder.

I've long said that when people claim to be members of the opposite sex, rather than destroying their bodies with hormones and surgery to create a Frankenstein-like simulacrum of that opposite sex, we should first give them a trial treatment of hormones aligned with, not the opposite of, their biological sex. It seems they also need time with a good psychiatrist who understands the emotional trauma of a disordered mother.

Evil Rays

Media colluding with feds to lay narrative for 'right wing' attack on US power grid

power grid
When the lights go out, it's becoming clear who will be blamed

The media is not your friend.

That may sound like an overly simplistic statement, and yet look how many Americans marched in lockstep to the advice of the media over the last two-plus years when it came to taking a deadly toxic, spike-protein laced injection. I personally know many who wish they had not succumbed and taken those shots. Some will admit it openly. Others not so much. But you can see the distress in their eyes whenever the topic comes up.

The corporate media has become so corrupt and its messaging so indistinguishable from the government in Washington that they will literally say anything, read any script, write any fake story, that their mockingbird handlers order them to relay to the public. To do otherwise means instant termination and isolation. The pattern is now there for all to see. We have a plethora of national journalists who have either quit or been fired by their corporate-media bosses because they asked too many questions, or insisted on reporting on forbidden topics. Sharyl Attkisson, Lara Logan, Tucker Carlson, just to name a few. Others like Gary Webb and Michael Hastings died under mysterious circumstances.

So it is with great dread that I must alert you to the alerts coming out of the mainstream media over the weekend while many of us were enjoying family barbecues, going to the beach, or sitting on a fishing boat. The evil ones never rest. Not when they believe they are in their final end-game scenario of America's long-awaited destruction. All of the major corporate media outlets, working in collusion with the federal government, put out an alert about the potential for "right-wing" attacks on the U.S. power grid.

Comment: See also:


Yakov Rabkin: I left the USSR to enjoy free speech in the West. Fifty years later, it no longer exists

Yakov Rabkin
© D-Keine/Getty Images
Fifty years ago I left the Soviet Union for one reason: My desire for freedom. I was disgusted by the one-sided world view fostered by the banning of foreign publications and the jamming of Western radio stations. The obedient media, toeing the party line, repulsed me and made me laugh.

Fear of the authorities (even if they were far more "vegetarian" than in Stalinist times) restricted open discussion of politics to the "kitchen cabinet," with a small circle of trusted friends.

I left behind my hometown (then Leningrad, now St Petersburg), my friends, my brother and the graves of my parents and grandparents. Applying to emigrate meant taking a risk, because you almost always risked losing your job, many friends and even relatives, with no guarantee that you would even be granted an exit visa.

I was lucky. Just a few months later, my Soviet citizenship was revoked and I was able to buy a one-way train ticket to Vienna. My dream of freedom had come true. Although I was only allowed to take $140 out of the Soviet Union, the first thing I bought in Austria was a copy of the International Herald Tribune newspaper.