Senator Theoden* on ZeroHedge Debate on X Spaces

Doing a great imitation of Neville Chamberlain.

Source: Aaronson (2024).

Don’t have a transcript, but here are excerpts from Senator Theoden’s website.

Théoden Reference is to reign during period of Grima’s tenure as security adviser. For more on Senator Theoden, see this post.

49 thoughts on “Senator Theoden* on ZeroHedge Debate on X Spaces

  1. Macroduck

    Off topic – climate:

    In comments, we have recently been treated to assurances that climate change is good in general because CO2 is good for plants. This assurance was offered despite reports that weather conditions in many parts of the world have reduced, and are likely to continue to reduce, harvests and to threaten famine.

    The assertion that CO2 accumulation is generally good because it is, in general, good for photosynthesis, misses a lot. A massive extinction is underway because, even if we have more photosynthesis (ignoring drought and flood), changing environment means resident species find themselves unsuited for their environment. They die off, despite all the glorious new CO2.

    But never mind the loss of species and the “canary in the coal mine” message that loss sends. How’s about human performance and the performance of human institutions, upon which most human welfare relies? Ummm…not good, apparently:

    “Heatwaves ripple into the financial system”

    Defaults, spill-over from poor agricultural returns to other sectors of regional economies, lost access to credit at the firm level and higher costs from mitigating the effects of high temperatures all occur during heat waves.

    Thought you’d want to know.

    1. 2slugbaits

      Higher CO2 levels might be good for plant growth, but the higher temperatures that go along with it aren’t good for plant yields. Corn, soybeans and rice can only tolerate a certain temperature range, beyond which growth starts to slow or even stop. And what’s good for plant growth is not necessarily good for plant yield. Higher night temps cause corn plants to respirate more, which consumes the sugars they need to produce ears of corn. So higher night temps lead to lower yields. High night temps in Asia are also hurting rice yields.

  2. Anonymous

    Cabot Lodge and post Diem Saigon seem to spike my observation of rhythm

    Let’s suspend democracy we like our choice

  3. pgl

    RonJon is just following the lead of King Donald I:

    Gaetz says Trump trashed Ukraine aid during House GOP meeting

    ‘Rep. Matt Gaetz (R-Fla.) said former President Trump criticized the $61 billion for Ukraine passed under Speaker Mike Johnson’s (R-La.) leadership and signaled his disinterest in sending the war-torn country more support during his Thursday meeting with House Republicans.

    “TRUMP ON UKRAINE: ‘They’re never going to be there for us,’” Gaetz wrote in a post on the social platform X, sharing comments from Trump at the morning meeting. According to Gaetz, Trump also asserted the U.S. should “pay OUR TROOPS” instead of sending billions of dollars to Ukraine. “Trump trashing the Ukraine Aid to @SpeakerJohnson’s face is so epic,” Gaetz added.’

    RonJon, Gaetz, and Trump are nothing more than surrender monkeys.

  4. pgl

    “I think we all have to understand that Vladimir Putin will not lose this war. I state it that way as opposed to Ukraine can’t win, Vladimir Putin will not lose.”

    Read this rest of the rant for yourself as I cannot bring myself to even cut and paste such trash. There’s one thing, however. We have seen this trash from a troll who had been banned. Could it be that said troll got a job writing copy for RonJon?

    1. Macroduck

      The almighty Putin “will not lose”? So it’s up to him? Wow. That’s a hell of an idea – one-sided in a conflict decides, and everyone else has to come to terms with that decision. Nobody else has agency, as the kids like to say.

      Russia’ economy roughly 1/5 the size of the U.S. economy, and roughly 1/10 the size of NATO’s economies combined, but Putin gets to decide. Russia has lost as many as 120,000 troops, with another 180,000 injured and as many as 700,000 having fled the country to avoid conscription. But Putin can simply refuse to lose. That all it takes.

      Who thinks like that? Someone who has an earful of Russian propaganda thinks like that.

      1. pgl

        Darn it – I left off the link. And now I can’t even remember where I found this absurd quote.

        1. Moses Herzog

          Listening to or reading Theoden puts even strong minds into a downward spiral mood-wise. You are to be forgiven for that.

        1. Willie

          The current conflict is about Putin’s ego, but it’s also part of the end of the historic Muscovite empire. That empire started expanding in the 15th century, more or less, and reached its peak after WWII when the Soviet Union reached well into central Europe. The fall began when the Soviet Union came apart. We are now watching the violent death throes of the sclerotic Muscovite empire. This could continue for another year, another ten years, who knows. Putin, with his ego and brutality, cannot reverse this historic fact. If anything, he’s accelerating it. His military is committing suicide in Ukraine. Most of the country is undefended because he knows he doesn’t have to worry about invasion from NATO and the other neighbors, excepting China, are too weak to invade. Internal populations have not figured out that Moscow’s authority is waning. Once they do, the collapse will begin in earnest.

          Putin himself has no succession plan. He seems to be installing relatives and the children of his inner circle into positions of power now. That won’t stop others from vying for power when Putin dies or is deposed. Something similar may happen in China, where Xi seems to have removed all possible rivals and by doing that, removed all possible successors. Putin will be gone sooner. That will plunge the empire into additional chaos.

          None of this makes it any easier or better for Ukraine in the short to medium term. Putin doesn’t seem to care how many die for his ego, nor does he seem to care how much damage he does to his country or his country’s economy. I keep expecting the economy there to fray, and maybe it’s doing that. I’m just not seeing it happen like I would expect just yet.

          For all those reasons, Putin lost as soon as he crossed the border. Never mind that Ukraine proved to be far more resilient, far tougher, and far better led than Putin expected.

    1. Moses Herzog

      Ok, I know the characters you refer to, but with my deficient American education, your main message here has gone over my head.

  5. 2slugbaits

    So the senator thinks he knows what’s best for Ukrainians and he knows their own interests better than they do. He seems to think that the US and NATO are trying to shove a war down the throats of Ukrainians against their will. My understanding is that it’s the Ukrainians who are begging NATO for more weapons.

    He also seems to think that Putin is immortal. He’s not. The Ides of March scenario is another way this war could end.

    1. pgl

      The Ides of March is what I’ve been hoping would happen to Trump for many years now. Putin BTW goes out of his way to avoid any person who might hurt him.

  6. Moses Herzog

    Certain people will amaze you how they have ZERO personal shame in their own words and their own actions, no matter how amoral or morally deprived it is. Ron Johnson, or if you prefer Menzie’s dead on accurate moniker~~Theoden, is one of these type “people”.

    Theoden would make the perfect VP for the orange abomination, if he wasn’t too intelligent to walk into the bear trap. As infuriating as Theoden is, he doesn’t have that Ronald Reagan/ Mike Pence blank gaze “What’s my name again??” look in his eyes.

  7. James

    You would think that Senator Johnson being from Wisconsin and Oshkosh (although I think he spends most of his time at home in Florida when it is not election season) would have voted for Ukraine aid – considering how much is going to Oshkosh Defense (to non Wisconsinites – they make Heavy Tactical Vehicles/tank transporters etc.).

    But I have wondered about Sen Johnson when he was missing from the 4th of July parade in Oshkosh in 2018 and we found out he was hanging out in Moscow –

    Ever since he has been right behind Rudy Giuliani and Tucker Carlson in pushing Russian propaganda –

    1. Moses Herzog

      He shows near despise of Wisconsinites yet they keep voting him in. Reminds me of my state’s constituents. When any politician craps on them with bad policy they can’t wait to vote for them again.

      Wisconsin has a much better public education system than my state, so I’m trying to figure out you guys’ excuse.

      1. Jake formerly of the LP

        In the last election (won as an incumbent by 1%), it was a major amount of racist ads against his Black opponent, funded by a torrent of dark money from donors that RonJohn gave a massive tax cut to. And then one BS poll 3 weeks from the election had RonJohn up 6%, and national Dem types gave up.

        But speaking as a Wisconsinite, that’s still no excuse. Anyone with an ounce of pride should look at that (mo)Ron talk for five minutes and realize he’s nothing more than a mediocre white Boomer who was handed his business by his billionaire father-in-law.

        1. Moses Herzog

          I’m down here in Oklahome, (I rarely reference directly on this blog, drinking now) a pretty old man now (I certainly qualify as “creepy uncle” type, hopefully if I was at your house on Thanksgiving you wouldn’t work at avoiding me, but I still fit as “creepy uncle” on the Venn diagram) Outside A VERY few months in kansas, 5 years in Iowa, 7 years in China (Wow it just dawned on me I was in China longer than I was in Iowa). I spent all my life in this illiterate shith*le state. It’s predominantly racist here also. They claim not to be racist, but it’s a continual “undercurrent”. I am not “woke”, On race/gender topics I probably would not be considered “progressive” Tired, very very very tired of race/gender discussions on NPR, NYT. I’m just telling you the truth here, But I still like to imagine myself “educated”.

          Don’t feel bad. OKlahoma is Wisconsin’s bad traits multiplied by 3. It just makes you shake your head, Shake my head every day in befuddlement

  8. Macroduck

    Israel’s war against Hezbollah may turn into a war against Lebanese civilians, in the same way the war against Hamas has been a war against Palestinian civilians:

    “This is exactly the time to take action against Hezbollah and Lebanon as a country and attack civilian infrastructures.”

    Attack Lebanon as a country, says Israel Defense and Security Forum CEO Lt. Col. (res.) Yaron Buskila. IDSF is a group of former and current members of the IDF, Shin Bet, Mossad and national police who attempt to influence policy. IDSF wants to kill Lebanese, excuse me, to “destroy civilian infrastructure” to weaken Hezbollah.

    1. Moses Herzog

      It’s so hard to communicate to Jewish people, I had this SAME problem in my 7 years in China…. SAME problem. I love Israel, I love Israeli people, I love China, and I love very deeply the Chinese people (As a stupid Goyim white dude) But if you talk bad about Xi Jinping, or you talk bad about Netanyahu, they think you hate “all” Chinese or you hate “all” Israelis. And I promise you, no matter how deeply you love them or express that love, they just get caught up in what you said about their government. And I told them “make fun and insult “W” Bush” I hate him too. He’s dyslexic, don;t learn English form “W” Bush, I hate Reagan. I’d tell them now “I hate donald trump” If you insult donald trump I don’t connect that to “You hate America.” It NEVER “registers” in their mind. They can’t fathom the difference. It’s extremely frustrating/aggravating.

    2. Moses Herzog

      @ MD
      Honestly, If I stop and think about it awhile, this must be one of the things that makes me nearly INSANE, especially if I’m sober. I just try to put it in the part of my brain that I cannot find when I’m sober. Just never go there. “it”s not there” yeah. It’s a neat trick if you can pull it off. Might even save you from self-destructive behaviors/

  9. Macroduck

    Clarence Thomas (et. al.) has declared that the Second Amendment distinguishes between guns which fire many times when the trigger is pulled only once by a human finger, because of some internal mechanism, and a guns which fires many times when the trigger is pulled only once by a human finger, because of some mechanism which is attached to the outside of the gun. What matters is not the many rounds fired at the single pull of the trigger. What matters is the location of the mechanism which causes multiple rounds to fire.

    That distinction is in the Second Amendment; Clarence Thomas says so, and so do five of his fellow justices.

    This is the same quality of legal thought as that derived from the antique views of witch hunters.

  10. pgl

    It seems some Republicans advocate mass murder:

    Republicans Cheer Supreme Court Ending Donald Trump Policy

    Republicans celebrated on Friday after the U.S. Supreme Court overturned a policy on bump stocks, even though it was put in place under former President Donald Trump. The Supreme Court struck down the ban on bump stocks in a 6-3 decision. All of the conservative justices joined the majority opinion, while the court’s three liberals dissented. Bump stocks can be added to guns to allow for continuous firing with critics saying they essentially turn a semiautomatic weapon into a machine gun.

    The Trump administration implemented a ban on the sale or possession of bump stocks in 2018, after a gunman used the weapon in a mass shooting in Las Vegas that killed 58 people and left hundreds of others injured. The policy received support from Democrats, as gun safety advocates viewed it as a common sense measure that could prevent future similar mass shootings. The ban came through a Department of Justice (DOJ) rule.

    Despite the policy being put in place by the Trump administration, Republicans on Friday celebrated the court’s overturning of the ban in posts to social media platform X, formerly known as Twitter. “Major victory for #2A rights at the Supreme Court!!” Georgia Representative Marjorie Taylor Greene, a prominent supporter of the former president, posted. Representative Lauren Boebert, of Colorado, posted, “A well regulated Militia, being necessary to the security of a free State, the right of the people to keep and bear Arms, SHALL NOT BE INFRINGED. And plastic accessories are not guns!” Senator Mike Lee, of Utah, posted, “Good. The Supreme Court reminds unelected bureaucrats that they don’t get to infringe upon our Second Amendment rights by rewriting laws they don’t like.” “In our Constitutional republic, Congress makes the laws, not the administrative branch,” posted Representative Thomas Massie, of Kentucky. “The Supreme Court just acknowledged this in a 6 to 3 decision invalidating Trump’s bump-stock ban.”

    1. Moses Herzog

      I wish Lauren Boebert was as smart as she was HOT, then a lot of problems might be easier solved. But not every chick can be like my former GF (dark chuckle)

  11. pgl

    Russian inflation update:

    (Bloomberg) — Russian inflation accelerated in May to the highest in more than a year, adding to pressure on the central bank to hike the key rate to curb price growth. Annual inflation reached 8.3% last month, from 7.84% in April, the highest since February last year, Federal Statistics Service data showed late Friday. Price growth jumped to 0.74% in monthly terms from 0.5% in April. Bank of Russia Governor Elvira Nabiullina last week warned of the possibility of a “significant” rate hike in July if inflationary pressures don’t start to ease. That came after the central bank held the rate at 16% for the fourth meeting in a row, as Russia’s war in Ukraine continues to overheat the economy and stoke inflation. With government spending on the rise, Nabiullina has been turning more hawkish as economic growth, local demand and price increases have consistently outpaced the central bank’s expectations. The bank said June 7 that it anticipates inflation will return to its 4% goal in 2025.

    Inflation was slightly higher than their expectations but nowhere close to the stupid Steve Koptis claim that a 16% nominal interest rate had to mean expected inflation should be 14%. After all – I tried to explain to the World’s Stupidest Consultant that ex ante real rates for Russia could indeed by as high as 8%.

    But Know it All Stevie insisted that real rates had to be only 2% given his totally idiotic abuse of some irrelevant “Taylor Rule”. Yea = Stevie boy has a whole advanced macroeconomic theory that even the Village Idiots are laughing at.

    1. Moses Herzog

      This is just a neutral question, Do we know how the Urals oil thing is going with tariffs or quotas or whatever?? I’m asking seriously.

      Does that international oil thing-ie have any recent reports?? If the Western nations’ moves are still affective??

  12. pgl

    Summers Says Trump Tax Ideas Mean ‘Mother of All Stagflations’

    Former Treasury Secretary Lawrence Summers blasted policy ideas floated by former President Donald Trump as immensely damaging to both the US and the global economy. “This is a prescription for the mother of all stagflations,” Summers said on Bloomberg Television’s Wall Street Week with David Westin Friday, with regard to replacing a major amount of income-tax revenue with tariffs. It would also create “worldwide economic warfare,” he said. Summers was speaking a day after Trump presented the idea of using tariff hikes as a way to pay for some income tax cuts in a meeting with House Republicans. Trump has also proposed a minimum 10% universal import levy and a punitive rate for China. A shift to relying on tariffs for revenue would push up not just the cost of imports, but those of goods and services that compete with those imports, Summers said. Consumers would have less to spend on everything else, creating a “downward spiral” in the economy, he said. “I don’t think there’s been a more inflationary presidential economic policy platform in my lifetime,” said Summers, a Harvard University professor and paid contributor to Bloomberg TV. “Perhaps George McGovern in 1972 in some ways would be a comparison,” he said, referring to the Democratic nominee who lost in that contest.

    Telling us how you really feel Larry! Oh wait, Team Trump has asked Kudlow and Bruce Hall to come up with the Campaign Response

    ‘Asked about Summers’s criticisms, Karoline Leavitt, a Trump campaign spokesperson, said, “President Trump’s first-term pro-growth economic policies created record-low mortgage, interest and unemployment rates and made inflation virtually non-existent.”’

    Lord – the MAGA hatters are truly clowns!

    1. Moses Herzog

      Honestly I was wondering if Larry Summers was 1/2 step away from Peter Navarro strain male menopause. So this revelation surprises me. He did get the gut shot in on McGovern so I guess that still leaves Larry an opening for a Republican WH “token Jew” spot.

    1. Moses Herzog

      I first assumed you were talking about the ultimate douche Joe Kernen. But this guy is also a jerk. Way smarter than Kernen, but a sellout to TBTF CEOs for access for his book. Just spoonfed the “insider talk” and then regurgitate for the idiot masses. I’m sure it made him a lot of money repeating TBTF bankers’ agenda. To his mother’s בושה …… or maybe she raised him to whore for money, we don’t know.

  13. Macroduck

    Stating the obvious here, but we are starting to see a good bit of policy talk from the Trump camp. Not just imperial president, “vengeance IS policy!” kind of stuff. Replacing taxes with tariffs. Ending support for Ukraine. Balancing trade (overall or bilateral?). Presidential control over interest rates. Federal control over state courts.

    Much like last time, but with a greater level of intent, Trump thinks changing things in a whim, things he doesn’t understand, sometimes maybe because he doesn’t understand them, is what being president is for.

    Big explanations about why Trump’s ideas are disastrous are fine, for those who have the patience to listen and understand. However, presidential elections are won by convincing undecided voters in a handful of swing states. Those voters are undecided because they haven’t been paying attention, because they just want someone to takecare ofthis stuff without asking too much of them. Explanations of why this crazy mush of policy ideas are terrible have to be simple, catchy and emotionally appealing.

    Any ideas?

      1. pgl

        The Big Oil bribe, more tax cuts for the rich, crypto, TikTok – all bad enough. But the worse is how Trump sucks up to the Likud nutcases by selling out Palestine:

        ‘Sheldon died in 2021, but his wife Miriam has continued his cause and may even surpass Yass to become Trump’s biggest patron in this election cycle. A New York Magazine profile of Miriam, published last month, suggested that Trump’s support for the Israeli annexation of the West Bank was top of her wish list for a second term. Sheldon died in 2021, but his wife Miriam has continued his cause and may even surpass Yass to become Trump’s biggest patron in this election cycle. A New York Magazine profile of Miriam, published last month, suggested that Trump’s support for the Israeli annexation of the West Bank was top of her wish list for a second term.’

        1. Moses Herzog

          “Israeli annexation of the West Bank”

          Not an “if question” but WHEN. set your stopwatch from now.

          1. pgl

            I have an idea for a new home for the Palestinians. Give them the land around and including Maro Lago. Would serve the Orange Jesus right!

          2. Moses Herzog

            @ pgl
            Your idea on real estate very easily gets my vote. Pretty damned great idea I have to say, Will Ivanka go along with your superb idea?? Or just keep putting her crotch on the fence in the vague middle ground??? We know the answer don’t we.

  14. Macroduck

    In the U.S., clumsy, selfish, divisive, vile governance was rejected in 2020. UK voters, because of institutional differences, didn’t have that opportunity, but probably would have done the same if the chance had presented itself.

    Now, the chance is presenting itself. Tories are going to be out of power for the first time in 14 years. Good riddance.

    But more than a swing from soulless right-wing deception to feckless left-wing “who knows?” is underway. Reform UK just out-polled the Conservatives:

    In other words, the party which represents sincere, overt racism, not just a mix of sincere and politically convenient racism, is the second most popular in the UK. The party which actually wanted to leave the EU, not one which backed into leaving in a stupid miscalculation, is the second most popular. The party which won’t even pretend to take climate change seriously is more popular than the one which backed away from climate-change goals but gave lip service to them.

    Given that Labour will be handed a national health system that the Tories broke, an economy that the Tories broke, finances that the Tories broke, a weakened global economy and, oh yeah, accelerating climate change, I don’t envy them their win. With Conservatives maybe out of power for a generation(?), when the public decides to take out their frustration over the result of Conservative cowardice on Labour, will the UK’s racist/isolationist/pollutionist party come to power?

    Feels like home, doesn’t it?

  15. pgl

    I was reading up on the 2022 energy price boom when I came across a new term (to me) for an old idea. Crack spread! That is a measure of the refinery margin between the price refineries charge to distributors of gasoline and the price they pay for oil. Now oil prices did spike in 2022 after Putin invaded Ukraine but I got the sense that gasoline price increases meant higher refinery margins (aka crack spreads) as well. And thanks to the Dallas FED, we can see how these margins compared to previous periods (see chart 3):

    Of course the drill baby drill MAGA morons like Bruce Hall kept dismissing this suggestion as they of course want to blame Biden for everything and seem to think drilling for more oil solves all problems. Of course the MAGA morons never had a clue what is happening in the market as they are usually on crack.

      1. Moses Herzog

        You always make me smile and laugh Macroduck on the rare times you’re not educating me, or sometimes both. I’m not being sarcastic, please don’t ever leave this blog, You’re good for my mental health MD.

  16. Moses Herzog

    I was watching all these old “Rush” interviews. So incredible Neal Peart’s thoughts on life and society. I had thought recently in my head “The train Hobos have died, hobo culture has died, I feel very very sad about that” Neal Peart said “What about ‘RV gypsy culture’ “?? The hobos are still going. It just switched modes.

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