This Week in the New Normal #81

Our successor to This Week in the Guardian, This Week in the New Normal is our weekly chart of the progress of autocracy, authoritarianism and economic restructuring around the world.
…see if you can spot the “secret theme” of this edition.

1. Storms “batter” the UK

Yesterday, Storm Isha tore across the UK knocking over bins and making gates rattle all over the south coast. Now, Storm Jocelyn is hot on Isha’s heels. More rain and wind are expected.

One unfortunate pensioner was reportedly killed by a falling tree, but the very fact that’s headline page news shows a) how much they want people to be afraid, and b) how little there is to be afraid of.

Is this just normal inclement weather? Absolutely not, it’s “different”, according to Sky News…

Different how? Doesn’t matter.

Of course, not so long ago neither “Isha” nor “Jocelyn” would have existed it would just have been “stormy”, since the UK only started naming storms a few years ago “to improve public awareness”.

Propaganda tip: “Improve public awareness” usually means “scare people”.

On an unrelated note, at the recently concluded Davos summit, no fewer than 36 different presentations were at least related to climate change and around 50 “agenda articles” on climate change have been published this year alone.

2. “The Obesity Crisis”

Did you know that obesity is bad for the global economy? That it can give you cancer? That it might collapse the NHS?

We should probably have special taxes in place on certain foods to prevent it, right?

And also here’s some Big Pharma slop. They tested it this time, honest.

On an unrelated note, “tackling the obesity epidemic” was the subject of a panel at Davos last week.

There will be a longer form article on this published during the week.

3. Argentine President Tells Davos to Shove it?

Newly elected President of Argentina Javier Milei divided opinion with his speech at Davos this week:

The Guardian called it “jarring”, the World Socialist Website called it a “fascist rant” and Politico ranked him 1st in their “dirty dozen of Davos”.

While the Spectator claimed he “dismantled the Davos groupthink” and the Telegraph that he “exposed Davos’ Left-wing rot”

He has also been praised by Elon Musk and the head of the IMF. All of which makes his apparent hero-worship from some alt quarters quite confusing. After all…

  • To speak at Davos, you have to be invited. They almost certainly vet all the speeches too.
  • Milei has been involved with the WEF for years.
  • Since when did we start trusting elections anyway?

I mean, a loud-mouthed non-politician with a “telling it how it is” schtick and crazy hair? Haven’t we done that one before?

I’m not sold. At all.

Oh, and he got the vaccine don’t forget.

BONUS: Unaccountable mystery of the week

According to the Daily Mail, the UK is currently suffering its ‘worst heart care crisis in living memory’.

While Sky News reports:

Heart disease warning as early deaths at highest rate in more than a decade

…anybody have any idea what could be causing that?

It’s not all bad…

Damon Imani was accidentally invited to Davos, and made the most of the opportunity…


All told a pretty hectic week for the new normal crowd, and we didn’t even mention China’s super uber totally deadly completely real new virus or the “surprising” increase in inflation.

There’s a lot of change in the air, a lot of agendas in the works, if you see a headline, article, post or interview you think is a sign of the times, post it in the comments, email us or share it on social media and we will add it to the next edition.


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