November 8, 2022

Posted by orrinj at 5:49 PM


Israeli hydrogen power company and Moroccan renewable energy developer sign MoU (SUE SURKES , 11/08/22, Times of Israel)

 Israeli hydrogen company H2Pro and Moroccan renewable energy developer Gaia Energy signed a strategic agreement for the supply of green hydrogen on Tuesday during the United Nations' COP27 climate conference in Egypt.

Hydrogen power is harvested by separating and reuniting the elements that make up water through a process that uses electrolysis. Hydrogen is green when the energy used to power the electrolyzers comes from renewable sources.

H2Pro is the commercial arm of an innovation developed by the Grand Technion Energy Program at the Technion - Israel Institute of Technology in Haifa, in northern Israel. The company separates hydrogen from oxygen in several steps in a technique that uses electricity more efficiently.

Gaia Energy is a leader in renewable energy, working with large utilities, national grid operators and governments to help power Africa with renewable energy. It has six gigawatts of projects under development, and has plans for a further seven projects with a total capacity of 40 gigawatts across the continent.

Gaia Energy's Founder and CEO Moundir Zniber told The Times of Israel that Morocco had large swaths of territory available for giga-scale energy production powered mainly by wind turbines and solar photovoltaic panels.

Africa is wise to steal a march on the West.

Posted by orrinj at 4:10 PM


In Sikh founder's life, a model for letting justice guide our democracy (Simran Jeet Singh, 11/08/22, RNS)

Today, Sikhs around the world are celebrating the birth of their founder, Guru Nanak, on a day known as Gurpurab. Also today, Americans across the country are voting for their next slate of leaders on what is known in the United States as Election Day.

As a Sikh American born in the United States, I'm carrying both in my heart today, remembering the wisdom and teachings of the past as I hope for a better future. [...]

But Sikh teachings lead me to a different way of thinking, one shared by many people around the world and across traditions, which says that deep spiritual practice leads to compassion for the other, and this compassion in turn inspires service and justice. In this way our deep spiritual practice is deeply engaged in the world.

Many religious interpretations follow this basic logic, which motivated some of the religious figures who lived as the best among us.

When we view religion this way, as inspiring self-development and social concern at the same time, it becomes difficult to accept any attempt to draw a line between the spiritual and the political.

Posted by orrinj at 6:14 AM


Voters Think Democrats Have Their Own 'Extremism' Problem (Matt Lewis, Nov. 07, 2022, Daily Beast)

So how is it possible that Democrats could lose to a party who fields weird and conspiratorial candidates (like Donald Trump, Kari Lake, and Herschel Walker--just to name a few)?

According to Third Way's findings, "Despite a roster of GOP candidates who are extreme by any standard, voters see Democrats as just as extreme..."

Progressive readers may have difficulty understanding this, but for much of the country (and I'm not just talking about Trump fans), far-left ideas and activists are more troubling than the crazy candidates and conspiracies on the right.

Hot-button topics like critical race theory, transgender issues in schools, "social justice" riots, and "defund the police," are simply more bothersome to a lot of the electorate than Trump's attempts to overturn the 2020 election.

To be sure, some of the worries about left-wing radicalism are overblown or exaggerated--but not all of them. Indeed, according to liberal journalist Kevin Drum, (who charted changes in public attitudes on issues like abortion, guns, gay marriage, taxes, and religion), "Since 1994, Democrats have moved left far more than Republicans have moved right."

This sense seems to be confirmed by the Third Way memo, which continues: "Less than half [of likely voters surveyed] (46 percent) describe Democrats as patriotic... A paltry 43 percent say Democrats share their values overall and a similar proportion (44 percent) think the party looks out for the middle class--a core element of a winning Democratic brand. Compounding these problems, a majority of voters (55 percent) describe Democrats as preachy and 53 percent say the party is "too woke." And while 54 percent call Republicans 'too extreme,' a strikingly similar 55 percent of voters say the same about Democrats--with 59 percent saying the party has gotten more extreme in recent years."

The Left is the Right.

Posted by orrinj at 12:00 AM


Posted by orrinj at 12:00 AM

"YOU HAVE NO IDEA" (slur alert):

WHEN TRUMAN CAPOTE MET ANN WOODWARD, RECENTLY MINTED WIDOW, IN SAINT MORITZWoodward had killed her husband. Now she was dining out at one of Europe's most exclusive restaurants, with Claus von Bülow. (ROSEANNE MONTILLO, 11/08/22, CrimeReads)

Back in the United States, those familiar with Ann Woodward-- and lately there were few who had not heard of her, whether over lunch at the Colony on New York's Upper East Side, or on the front pages of tabloids--believed that she had been banished to Europe by her formidable mother-in-law, Elsie Woodward, and was now likely leading a lonely life, without family or friends, much less a lover, with plenty of time to reflect on the transgressions that had forced her into exile.

But as Truman Capote watched her from a table across the restaurant, he saw that she was not the solitary widow they expected. Capote was not only surprised to see her in this particular location, but astonished to see her in the company of a man, which was a cause for raised eyebrows, considering that she had entered widowhood by her own hand not so very long ago. But Ann Woodward did not seem rattled by the patrons staring with obvious disdain as she exchanged languorous looks with her companion.

Truman recognized the man she was with: Claus von Bülow. A noted womanizer, the tall and handsome von Bülow had committed himself to the effort of charming a long list of social contacts and prided himself on his cultivation of illustrious connections--much as Ann herself had done during her early years in New York. Ann found in von Bülow an amusing companion, younger than herself, a man with a past as colorful as her own, if not more so. The rumors surrounding him were dark: that he was a necrophile; that he had killed his mother and stashed her body on ice; that somehow, he was still embroiled in espionage; that as a youth he had attended Hermann Göring's wedding. Von Bülow could rebut most of the gossip if he ever found himself in the mood to explain, which was rare. Most of the time he shrugged away the stories with a smirk, which made him even more beguiling to many.

In later years, long after Ann Woodward had come and gone from his life, Claus von Bülow would be indicted for the attempted murder of his wife, Sunny, whom he married in June 1966, and who would spend twenty-seven years and eleven months in a coma after it was suspected Claus von Bülow attempted to kill her by injecting her with sedatives and insulin. The position he would find himself in was not unlike Ann Woodward's, and further solidified his bizarre connection to her.

Posted by orrinj at 12:00 AM


'The ultimate enemy is women' - inside the fear-filled world of incels (Benjamin Zand, 7 Nov 2022, The Guardian)

I am sitting in a bar in Southampton with an "incel" - meaning involuntarily celibate - who has never had a proper conversation with an adult woman other than his mum. "How do you feel about the idea of talking to a lady?" I ask him. "I think there might be a little bit of a safety concern," he says, "in the sense of false rape charges. From what I read on the internet, it's unsafe to even be in the same room as a woman without a third party." He tells me that if he approaches a woman, she may start beating herself to falsely accuse him of "domestic abuse or assault".

I've spent a year inside the incel community in the UK and abroad - a world of loneliness, isolation and extreme misogyny - for a TV programme. It could be the most depressing documentary I've ever made and there are a fair few contenders.

Like crabs in a barrel, angry, young, virgin men brainwash each other with an ideology that tells them that only extremely good-looking men have any success with women and life, and that if you don't fit that criterion, women will not only ignore you, but set out to destroy you. It encourages anyone who doesn't have the right jaw shape, who isn't tall enough or who isn't a "Chad" (a highly attractive male) to give up. It also points them to one ultimate enemy: women.

No one hates just Mexicans.

Posted by orrinj at 12:00 AM


Quack COVID Group America's Frontline Doctors Is Suing Its 'Rogue Founder' Simone Gold ( Anna Merlan, November 7, 2022, Vice News)

America's Frontline Doctors (AFLDS), the pseudo-medical group that rocketed to pandemic infamy by spreading bad information about COVID, advocating for discredited treatments, fearmongering about vaccines, and attempting to influence state legislation, is suing one of its founders in federal court, months after her release from prison. 

AFLDS filed suit on November 4 against Dr. Simone Gold, accusing her of misappropriating AFLDS funds to buy a $3.6 million home, rent another property, purchase three luxury vehicles, and fund a housekeeper, personal security detail, and thousands of dollars a month in other, unspecified personal expenses. The suit also accuses Gold of tortious interference, claiming she's seeking to "to take back control of AFLDS and restore herself into a leadership role with the organization." In September, Gold finished serving almost 60 days in prison on a trespassing charge after she entered the U.S. Capitol during the January 6, 2021 insurrection. 

Posted by orrinj at 12:00 AM


Posted by orrinj at 12:00 AM


Guy Fawkes & National Identity (Mark Tooley, November 7, 2022, Providence)

As an icon, Fawkes is now cute and whimsical. But of course, he and his conspirators were terrorists and attempted assassins. Their success would have been disastrous for Britain and the wider cause of liberty in the world.  Britain, nearly unique in the world, had a robust and fairly independent parliament that could challenge arbitrary royal power. Within a few decades, the parliament would even launch a war against and behead the king.  Relative liberty in Britain contrasted with more autocratic Spain, for whom Fawkes fought in its war against the Protestant Netherlands.

Fawkes failed to get direct Spanish aid for insurrection in Britain, but he helped organize seditionists on his own. The explosion was intended to kill the "heretic" King James I, after which his nine-year-old daughter Elizabeth would become a Catholic queen who would return the natural order to Britain.  Fawkes was discovered with 36 barrels of gunpowder beneath the House of Lords. Under torture he confessed his plans and the names of his co-conspirators.  He died by hanging before he could be drawn and quartered while still alive. In death, his body parts were scattered throughout Britain as an example.  King and parliament decreed that November 5 should be celebrated annually as a day of thanksgiving with bonfires and church services.  A special liturgy was added to the Church of England's Book of Common Prayer.  Later, fireworks on the holiday became prominent, if also dangerous.

King James II, who was Catholic, unsuccessfully tried to suppress the commemoration.  Auspiciously, William of Orange landed in England on November 5 to overthrow and replace James, and he gladly oversaw the full revival of the holiday. Guy Fawkes Day became enshrined as Britain's chief national day of celebration.  Britain has no equivalent of July 4 or Bastille Day.  Today, Guy Fawkes Day has no legal standing but is the British equivalent of Halloween as a quirky folk holiday.

Guy Fawkes Day has across centuries often included anti-Catholic themes and effigies of the pope. But in recent times those themes have mostly if not entirely faded.  Anti-Catholicism today is likelier to come from secularists than from Protestants.  But the day has been central to Britain's unfolding self-identity as  independent, self-governing, defiant, free from domestic and external tyranny. 

Posted by orrinj at 12:00 AM


November 7, 2022 (Heather Cox Richardson, 11/07/22, Letters from an American)

Today, Yevgeny Prigozhin, a Russian oligarch and the leader of the private military company the Wagner Group, who is close to Russian president Vladimir Putin, boasted that Russians had interfered in U.S. elections and continue to do so. "We have interfered, we are interfering and we will continue to interfere. Carefully, accurately, surgically and in our own way, as we know how to do." He added: "During our pinpoint operations, we will remove both kidneys and the liver at once."

Prigozhin is apparently behind the Russia-based "troll farms" that try to affect U.S. elections. Steven Lee Myers of the New York Times writes that Russians have indeed targeted the 2022 elections to make right-wing voters angry and undermine trust in U.S. elections. Their hope is to erode support for Ukraine's struggle to repel Russian invasion by electing Republicans who side with Putin.

He had them at oppressing Chechnya.