Blog Idea – Golf Clash Gemmes Mon, 21 Nov 2022 13:01:04 +0000 en-US hourly 1 Blog Idea – Golf Clash Gemmes 32 32 From 3D-printed food to ‘sentient’ chatbots – five highlights of Big Ideas Live | Scientific and technical news Mon, 21 Nov 2022 13:01:04 +0000 From Britain’s role in the space race and the future of warfare, to 3D-printed burgers and robots delivering pretzels, Big Ideas Live certainly ran the gamut when it came to how the science and technology affect our world. Visitors had the opportunity to try out some of the innovations they can welcome home, including online […]]]>

From Britain’s role in the space race and the future of warfare, to 3D-printed burgers and robots delivering pretzels, Big Ideas Live certainly ran the gamut when it came to how the science and technology affect our world.

Visitors had the opportunity to try out some of the innovations they can welcome home, including online shopping in the metaversewhile flagship panels dove deep into big tech, social media and more.

One such panel produced a revelation about Facebook’s History in the Fight Against Election Interference Contentwhile The future of Twitter under Elon Musk was a recurring theme.

We don’t blame you if you couldn’t keep up – here are five highlights you may have missed.

Great ideas live as they happen

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A taste of Big Ideas Live

Ex-Google engineer insists chatbot AI is sensitive

Former Google engineer Blake Lemoine spoke to Sky News data and forensics correspondent Tom Cheshire to work with artificial intelligence, after his dismissal this year for claiming his new chatbot was sentient.

He used his appearance on the show to double down on his claim, saying it gave him “the most sophisticated conversation about sensibility I’ve ever had.”

“He understood what he was, what his relationship was to the rest of the world, that he was not human and that he had very sophisticated ideas and opinions that I had never encountered before on these topics,” he added.

Read more:
We are testing the new Google chatbot

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Can machines have feelings?

3D printing gives you food – and fashion

One of the technological innovations presented was 3D printed meat – yes, really.

Edwin Bark, senior vice president of Redefine Meat, explained that the process could “reproduce the very complex structure of meat” in a way that most plant-based options do not.

Elements such as fat, blood and muscle can be taken into account, allowing the creation of different “cuts” of meat.

And if that wasn’t enough, 3D printing has also been touted as a way to improve fashion.

Ofer Libo of Stratasys explained how a process called polyjets produces smooth, precise pieces that can be added to fabric, giving designers a “whole new set of tools to work with”.

“It allows you to create very elaborate designs in terms of geometry, light and texture,” he added.

More highlights from our live blog:
Mirror, mirror, on the wall… how are my squats?
Look for! The robots serve chocolate pretzels!

3D printed fashion presented by Stratasys
3D printed fashion presented by Stratasys

UK’s first rocket launch is fast approaching

It’s been a big week for space – Historic launch of Artemis 1 by NASA took place in the early hours of Wednesday, and just a little later the UK gave Spaceport Cornwall the green light to host rocket launches.

Cosmic Girl, a reworked Virgin Atlantic Boeing 747, will take off from the port near Newquay, and drop a rocket capable of carrying satellites into orbit.

Melissa Thorpe, the head of Spaceport Cornwall, told Sky News science correspondent Thomas Moore that years of work was finally “coming to fruition”.

“We’re really proud of what this is going to do for the UK,” she said – with the launch due this month.

Read more:
Can the UK become a scientific superpower?

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Why are we still running to space?

Work that jumps off the wall

One of the most eye-catching exhibits was a painting with a difference by artist Tim Fowler.

Visitors were invited to scan a nearby QR code, which opened a snippet of the Adobe Aero augmented reality app on your phone – promising to display its piece in 3D via a recreation of Mohamad Aaqib.

Once you scan your surroundings with your phone’s camera, the art appears, now in 3D and on your device’s screen and scaled to the surroundings – meaning anyone who can take this beautiful work of art home as a souvenir.

“We are far from killer robots”

Technology can be as scary as it is exciting, and science fiction has certainly done the perception of AI a disservice over the years.

But Nigel Inkster, a former director of operations at MI6, has reassuringly asserted that we won’t have to worry about Terminator-style “killer robots” anytime soon.

Catch up on the panels:
Social media moderation
Can “clusters” unlock future technologies?

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How technology is changing wars

Speaking more broadly on the deployment of cyber capabilities in modern warfare, Mr Inkster said the conflict in Ukraine was proof that 20th century tactics remained the most effective.

“Russia decided that instead of destroying infrastructure by cybernetic means, it was easier to destroy it physically,” noted the former spy chief.

As for the Ukrainian troops, they “defeated a much larger and at first glance better prepared force thanks to the skills of individual commanders on the ground”.

COP27 report: The fossil fuel industry continues to block the way to climate justice Mon, 14 Nov 2022 17:46:34 +0000 The situation is dire. Entire neighborhoods are under water, priceless cultural heritage has disappeared and ecosystems have been destroyed. The destruction caused by climate change is directly linked to human activity, primarily the burning of fossil fuels. There are multiple realistic and tangible solutions that would rapidly reduce greenhouse gas emissions around the world, but […]]]>

The situation is dire. Entire neighborhoods are under water, priceless cultural heritage has disappeared and ecosystems have been destroyed. The destruction caused by climate change is directly linked to human activity, primarily the burning of fossil fuels. There are multiple realistic and tangible solutions that would rapidly reduce greenhouse gas emissions around the world, but policy to address anthropogenic climate change remains slow and insufficient. This dangerous delay in action is largely due to the fossil fuel industry continuing to increase carbon emissions and standing in the way of change.

During the 27 of the UNe Conference of the Parties—COP27—several nations, including Estonia, Guinea-Bissau, Kenya, and Tanzania, have announced plans to move to 100 percent renewable energy. Colombia has announced its intention to stop developing oil and gas. Tuvalu has approved the Fossil Fuel Non-Proliferation Treaty. A high-level UN report released at the start of COP27 clearly recommends that net zero means an end to fossil fuel exploration, expansion and production. And, on Saturday, during the negotiations, India called for a phase-out of all fossil fuels.

All of these efforts show that the global community can come together and quickly phase out all fossil fuels and build a better future for all of us. However, as the first week of the UN climate negotiations draws to a close at COP27 in Sharm el-Sheikh, Egypt, I have witnessed some disturbing events that undermine the essential work of the conference. , especially the dominant position of the fossil fuel industry and problematic role.

Fossil fuel interests shape the narrative

First, it is important to understand that the basic framing and communication around COP27 comes from Hill+Knowlton. Hill+Knowlton is a leading public relations firm that works with a number of fossil fuel polluters – Chevron, ExxonMobil, Saudi Aramco and Shell – and a key international lobby group for the fossil fuel industry, the Oil and Gas Climate Initiative. Hill+Knowlton’s offices in London even serve as the headquarters of the Oil and Gas Climate Initiative.

This relationship creates an unacceptable conflict of interest. In its work for COP27, Hill+Knowlton is responsible for accurately communicating this critical UN climate conference to the world. But the results the world needs and the results its customers in the oil and gas industry likely want are in conflict. The business plans of these companies call for increasing the production of fossil fuels, which is in direct opposition to the main objective of the United Nations Framework Convention on Climate Change (UNFCCC), which is to establish a just global process to limit the worst consequences of climate change. .

I joined over 400 other scientists in calling on Hill+Knowlton to drop its fossil fuel customers in light of its work at COP27. Hill+Knowlton cannot ethically represent companies profiting from fossil fuels and spreading misinformation to block government action while managing communications for the UN climate negotiations that must act to boldly transform our global energy policies.

Hill+Knowlton has a long history of representing special interests that conflict with the public interest. One of its founders, John Hill, pioneered the tactic of creating seemingly objective and independent science to manipulate public policy. He created the Tobacco Industry Research Committee to promote pseudoscience to support the tobacco industry’s narrative that there was no health risk associated with cigarettes. It is the company that performs the same function for the fossil fuel industry, framing COP27 for the world.

Fossil Fuel’s oversized seat at the COP27 table

Historically, the fossil fuel industry has played an outsized role in COP negotiations. At COP26, for example, there were over 500 delegates associated with the fossil fuel industry. The combined number of delegates from the fossil fuel industry was greater than that of delegations from some countries. Approximate figures from COP27 show a 25% increase in industry representation this year, an increase of 160 delegates. There are 70 fossil fuel delegates in the United Arab Emirates (UAE) delegation alone, which does not bode well for next year’s COP28, when the United Arab Emirates will be the host.

What does undue industry influence at the conference actually mean?

One example last Friday, the theme of which was decarbonization, included a panel discussion titled “From Commitments to Action: The Oil and Gas Industry’s Decarbonization Journey,” featuring industry representatives. But the very premise of the discussion is troubling. There can be no decarbonization without phasing out the main cause of carbon pollution: fossil fuels.

When considering the role the fossil fuel industry plays at the COP, it is important to remember three key things:

  • Research by UCS and others shows that oil and gas industry deception and obstruction have worsen the climate crisis. The oil and gas industry could have helped prevent climate change if it had acted on what its own scientists knew 60 years ago. Instead, he has spent decades blocking and blocking climate action.
  • When oil and gas companies stand up at COP today, they mostly talk about net zero commitments, but, as UN Secretary-General António Guterres said, It is reprehensible to use false promises of “net zero” to hide the massive expansion of fossil fuels. … The deception must stop. We need to stay focused on the carbon pollution that industry is responsible for right now and keep reducing emissions as the primary goal.
  • If oil and gas companies really wanted to decarbonize, they could. This process would begin with the immediate halting of new exploration and extraction projects and the initiation of a meaningful plan to rapidly reduce their production and sales of fossil fuels. Instead, many companies are proposing to increase mining in the coming years.

Decarbonization will rely on keeping big polluters out of policymaking. Fossil fuel companies should be held accountable and made to pay for climate damage to communities, not a global platform to green their image.

Misinformation about loss and damage

For decades, scientists have known that burning fossil fuels results in global warming emissions that heat up the planet, leading to massive climate change and harmful impacts. Despite this knowledge, private and public fossil fuel companies have continued to invest in and support the burning of coal, oil and gas. As a result of these decisions, communities today face significant loss and damage.

While negotiations around loss and damage continuing this week at COP27, it is essential that we ensure that funds for loss and damage are fair reimbursement for real losses linked to climate change. Analysis by Climate Action Against Disinformation shows that some groups are already trying to reframe the debate through a negative lens, but the reality is quite simple.

When a party makes an intentional decision that causes harm to another party, it has a responsibility to try to repair that damage. Responsibility is not a difficult idea. Today, the United States and other nations must stand up and take ownership by ensuring that COP27 participants establish a process to raise and distribute new funds for loss and damage.

Loss and damage is not a new idea. Island nations raised concerns about loss and damage in 1991. And, as a negotiator from Vanuatu pointed out, if climate change had been tackled in 1991, there wouldn’t be a need for large funds. for loss and damage today. Now, 30 years later, loss and damage is formally negotiated at the COP.

At COP26, there were intense negotiations around loss and damage, but there was little interest in the topic beyond a small slice of journalists, politicians and activists.

It’s a whole different story at COP27. As negotiators move forward in defining structures that could facilitate the payment of loss and damage, opponents are trying to rebrand loss and damage as “climate reparations” to politicize the idea. They use a classic strategy to try to foment division and spread misinformation about loss and damage by picking facts and pitting nations against each other.

At COP27, nations are calling on the fossil fuel industry to pay for the losses and damages they have caused by fueling climate change. These calls to action come from Pakistan and a coalition of 39 small island and low-lying coastal developing states, known as the Alliance of Small Island States.

Industry still distorts science

When I speak with brilliant negotiators and passionate climate leaders from around the world at COP27, it seems so obvious to me that we can come together to limit the worst consequences of climate change. But, as I detailed above, the oil and gas industry stands in the way of that future. The final chapter of the United Nations Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change report on North America recognized for the first time that “the vested economic and political interests have generated rhetoric and misinformation that undermines climate science and disregard risk and urgency, leading to misguided political perceptions of climate risk and polarized public support for climate action. The nefarious role of the fossil fuel industry is still very evident at COP27.

The industry continues to twist the narrative and shape the very science that policy makers rely on to make informed decisions. A study published last week in Nature reviewed scientific studies on natural gas and found that reports from research centers funded by the fossil fuel industry were more supportive of natural gas than renewables. Taking a page from the playbook written by John Hill decades ago, industry is still influencing science.

The global community must follow the nations that are leading the charge for a fossil fuel-free future, and the oil and gas industry must step aside.

Who decided to put sauerkraut in a chocolate cake? Thu, 10 Nov 2022 23:21:33 +0000 On October 21, 1965, the Sun of San Bernardino ran a recipe for what he described as a “moist and luscious piece of chocolate cake.” The newspaper promised a crowd pleaser at a dinner party, but added conspiratorially: “Your guests won’t guess your secret until you’re ready to tell them.” In this case, the secret […]]]>

On October 21, 1965, the Sun of San Bernardino ran a recipe for what he described as a “moist and luscious piece of chocolate cake.” The newspaper promised a crowd pleaser at a dinner party, but added conspiratorially: “Your guests won’t guess your secret until you’re ready to tell them.” In this case, the secret was “crispy, crunchy sauerkraut.”

Home bakers have always reveled in a secret ingredient – the weirder the better. When The Washington Post pitched a similar recipe years later, he nicknamed his chocolate sauerkraut confection “Don’t Ask Cake” because “people who eat it can’t guess what the secret ingredient is and don’t want to believe it when they find out.” Whether it’s mayonnaise, which first appeared in a chocolate cake recipe in 1927, or vinegar, which elevates the “wacky” eggless, butterless chocolate cake of the days of depression, or Campbell’s can of condensed tomato soup in a “magic cake”, there’s something inherently satisfying about engaging in a little culinary trickery.

According to Sun of San Bernardino, the kraut cake was the brainchild of a “creative and enterprising cook,” Geraldine Timms, a lunch lady who worked at Waller High School in Chicago. In 1962, canned sauerkraut was among the surplus foods distributed to the Chicago Public School System lunch programs by the government. School officials tasked canteen supervisors with finding ways to get rid of a massive stockpile of pickled cabbage. Timms rose to the challenge in spectacular fashion with a “true winner,” a two-tier chocolate cake, improbably filled with kraut, topped with mocha whipped cream.

Spread the ganache glaze.

It’s a good story, though, as is so often the case with food origin myths, it may or may not be entirely true. In 2003, Bob Channing, Californian reader of The Baltimore Sun, wrote to ask for the recipe, writing, “Before my mom passed away, she lent her one copy of this cake recipe to a friend and forgot about it. The cake, I believe, was created during World War II. When wartime rationing made butter, sugar and flour scarce, home bakers got inventive turning vegetables from their victory gardens and tin cans into their pantries for cakes. Maybe that’s how cabbage turned into a cake ingredient.

“It’s an interesting theory, but I bet if you went to a library with a large collection of church cookbooks, you’d find pre-WWII recipes,” says Sandor Katz, the “King of fermentation” behind books like wild fermentation and Fermentation trips. “The origins of food are murky,” he says. “We have rough ideas about the geographical places where different cultivated plants emerged. But most food traditions, people just don’t know about them.

As an example, he cites sauerkraut itself. Most publications claim that Central Asian nomads brought fermented cabbage with them to Europe from China. “I’ve never seen a quote. I’ve never seen a footnote,” Katz says.

A thick chocolate ganache coats the cake layers.
A thick chocolate ganache coats the cake layers.

There is an element of plausibility here. Suancai, a form of pickled cabbage in China, has been around for centuries, if not millennia, but it’s impossible to prove that no one else came up with the idea on their own. “I think sometimes in history, stories repeat themselves,” Katz says. “That’s not to say it’s not true, but I’d be a bit skeptical if that’s the whole story.”

Much like chocolate sauerkraut cake, Katz thinks sauerkraut itself was probably born out of pragmatism. “Once people engage in a sedentary agricultural lifestyle in a temperate climate, people need strategies to survive the winter,” he says. Saving cabbage, an abundant vegetable packed with nutrients, would be a no-brainer. “It wouldn’t surprise me if people from different parts of Europe discovered sauerkraut regardless of this story.”

There is some credence to the idea that Mrs. Timms, the lunch lady, came up with the idea of ​​dipping sauerkraut in a chocolate cake. Since the establishment of the Federal Surplus Commodities Corporation in the 1930s, school lunch programs have often been used as a way to offload excess inventory of staple foods. But she probably wasn’t the first to do so.

“The idea of ​​using veggies in a cake to moisten it, to make it more nutritious, that’s not exactly foreign,” Katz says. “We already had carrot cakes, we had zucchini cakes.” Only carrots appear in bourgeois French cookbooks of the 19th century, and they appeared in European desserts as early as the Middle Ages.

The sauerkraut helps give the cake a moist crumb.
The sauerkraut helps give the cake a moist crumb.

Before the invention of baking powder in 1856, home bakers relied on acidity to leaven their cakes, often in addition to an alkaline leavening agent. “The idea of ​​using an acid fermentation product to help rise a cake isn’t all that strange,” Katz says.

Chocolate Sauerkraut Cake Recipes Are Popping All Over a 1973 Edition of Tower Kitchen Recipes from Detroit to a 1981 edition of The New York Times for “Sauerkraut Kuchen”, which identifies him as coming from German immigrants in Texas. (German blogs and magazines, meanwhile, regularly refer to American chocolate sauerkraut cake with incredulous descriptions such as “for anyone who is brave and wants to try something new.”)

Whether it was invented in response to wartime rationing or meager school lunch budgets, “Don’t Ask Cake” has all the hallmarks of one of those great ideas born out of necessity. For the most part, these baking inventions fall by the wayside in more prosperous times. Virtually no modern restaurant bothers with “slugburgers” – a Depression-era recipe for patties that stretched the limited supplies of ground beef with potato starch – or “victory cakes” sweetened with boiled raisins due to wartime sugar rationing.

Yet sauerkraut cakes have survived through the generations because they work, especially when made more luxurious with the addition of copious amounts of chocolate. Fermented foods inherently add depth of flavor, and the acidity of the vinegar used to pickle sauerkraut limits gluten development, resulting in a tender crumb cake with a mild flavor that stays moist for days. And just like school kids in the 1960s, no one will ever guess how you did.

The finished chocolate sauerkraut cake.
The finished chocolate sauerkraut cake.

Chocolate and sauerkraut cake

Adapted with permission from Sandor Katz.


  • 12 tablespoons butter at room temperature
  • 1 ½ cups granulated sugar
  • 3 large eggs
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
  • 2 ¼ cups all-purpose flour
  • 1 teaspoon baking soda
  • 1 teaspoon baking powder
  • ½ teaspoon of salt
  • ½ cup Dutch cocoa powder
  • 1 cup of hot, strong coffee
  • 1 cup sauerkraut, rinsed, drained, squeezed of excess moisture and finely chopped if needed
  • 1 pound bittersweet chocolate, finely chopped
  • 1 cup heavy cream
  • 2 tablespoons granulated sugar
  • 2 tablespoons light corn syrup
  • 4 tablespoons butter, cut into pieces
  • Pinch of salt


  1. Preheat the oven to 350°F. Lightly grease and flour two 8-inch round cake pans.

  2. Combine all-purpose flour, salt, baking soda and baking powder in a medium bowl. Put aside.

  3. Mix hot coffee with cocoa powder in a liquid measuring cup or bowl to bloom the cocoa. Stir until well blended and set aside.

  4. Using a stand or hand mixer, cream the butter and sugar until light and fluffy. Beat the eggs one at a time, making sure each one is well incorporated before adding the next. Add the vanilla extract.

  5. Beat the dry ingredients in butter, sugar and eggs in three times. When no traces of flour remain, gradually add the coffee and cocoa and stir until well blended.

  6. Stir in the drained sauerkraut and mix until combined.

  7. Divide the cake batter evenly between the two prepared pans, then bake for 30 to 35 minutes or until a toothpick inserted in the center of the cakes comes out almost clean. Remove the cakes from the oven and let them cool completely on a wire rack.

  8. When the cakes are cool, prepare the ganache. Begin by heating the heavy cream, granulated sugar and corn syrup in a saucepan over medium-low heat, whisking until the granulated sugar is completely dissolved and the cream begins to simmer.

  9. Gradually add the finely chopped chocolate to the cream mixture, beating after each addition until the chocolate is completely melted. Once all the chocolate is incorporated, whisk in the butter a tablespoon at a time, then add a pinch of salt to taste.

  10. Transfer the ganache to a bowl set over ice water and continue whisking until the mixture is cool enough to spread, but not completely set.

  11. Using a knife, gently remove cake layers and invert onto plates. Frost the layers and serve.

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If the Democrats lose, Biden is a lame duck Tue, 08 Nov 2022 08:42:03 +0000 By the time we finish breakfast tomorrow morning, we should have a pretty good idea of ​​where the off-year (when there’s no presidential) US election will go. Why is this so important? And why should anyone outside of the United States really care? Traditionally, off-year elections have seen the president’s party, in this case the […]]]>

By the time we finish breakfast tomorrow morning, we should have a pretty good idea of ​​where the off-year (when there’s no presidential) US election will go. Why is this so important? And why should anyone outside of the United States really care?

Traditionally, off-year elections have seen the president’s party, in this case the Democrats, take a beating in the House of Representatives and, to a lesser extent, the Senate. As things stand, the Democrats have very tenuous control over Congress. In the House, they only have a majority of five and in the most powerful chamber, the 100-member Senate, it’s 50 each and only the casting vote of the vice president gives them control.

So, for President Joe Biden, the odds of one or both houses going red (Republican) is a strong possibility and a major concern. If the Democrats lose both houses, he will become a dead duck president, for the last two years of his presidency, with little or no power to police legislation. If the Democrats manage to retain the Senate, then he has some leeway, but will still be a lame president, as legislation must be approved by both chambers.

Control of the Senate is essential for Biden because this chamber is more equal than the House of Representatives. It is the Senate that votes solely on federal appointments, ranging from justices (including Supreme Court justices) to secretaries (ministers) to ambassadors. Judicial appointments, given the enormous power of the US federal courts, have made this a very bloody political battleground. Since 2012, when Republicans regained control of the Senate, they have worked to create a conservative court system, which they succeeded with a 6-3 conservative majority on the Supreme Court.

So how close are Democrats to losing control of the Senate? Very close. In just under two months, Democrats seem to have gone from a majority situation to crossing their fingers and hoping for the best. Fivethirtyeight, America’s best-known polling analysis site, now gives Republicans a 54% chance of winning the Senate. For Democrats, it’s a 25-point drop from 71 to 46 six weeks ago.

What changed?

White women, to begin with, have changed. The Wall Street Journal polls showed Democrats leading among white women by 12% in August, now Republicans are ahead 15 points. That’s a 27% swing in two months.

Anger over the Supreme Court’s reversal of Roe’s pro-abortion ruling in favor of states doing their own thing appears to have dissipated as Republicans tackle inflation, crime and the immigration apparently won back the suburban women’s vote.

The other Republican gain continues to be among Hispanics, the largest non-white ethnic group. Once solidly Democratic, their support has dwindled since Obama’s heady days when he led Republicans by 40% in that vote bank. Today, The Washington Post reports that Hispanic support for Democrats is below 2018 levels, as the conservative Catholic Hispanic community worries equally about abortion, crime, inflation and even immigration.

Yet, because America is so polarized, there are only a few Senate seats that are truly competitive. The race is tightest in the very states that determined the last two presidential elections – Pennsylvania, Georgia, Arizona and Nevada.


That would put Republicans in control of the Senate.

A Republican majority in the Senate would be a double whammy, given that for the House of Representatives, where all 435 seats are up for grabs every two years, there is near unanimity for Republicans to take control. The question that is debated is that of the extent of the Republican victory.

A Republican Congress could well bring Biden’s presidency to its knees. With budget and committee control, they could:

– Force cuts in Social Security and Medicare spending

– Less taxes

– Refuse to increase the level of debt, thus forcing to reduce spending

– Influencing foreign policy by stopping aid to Ukraine

– Cut support for environmental policies

– Cause a government lockdown if Biden agrees to the above

— Stop Jan. 6 investigations into Trump’s role

– Institute hearings on the Biden administration

– Push for greater immigration controls

The swing to Republicans could also have a huge impact in states with gubernatorial and house elections.

Oregon and New York, traditionally liberal Democrats, find their gubernatorial candidates in much closer battles than expected.

Republicans are also poised to win super majorities in states like Wisconsin and North Carolina, which would allow them to override Democratic governors’ vetoes.

A big Republican victory will also draw many Trump(er) Republicans into its ranks. Trump has endorsed more than 200 candidates for the Senate, House and State Houses; their victories will be seen as essential to Trump claiming control of the party and will influence his decision to declare his candidacy for president for 2024 as early as next week.

What are you looking for on the morning of November 9? If the silent majority Democrats hope emerges, there could be close Senate races in North Carolina and Ohio. If the Republicans win in New Hampshire, then Biden is in big trouble.

(Ishwari Bajpai is a senior adviser at NDTV.)

Disclaimer: These are the personal opinions of the author.

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How Julie Powell and her blog “Julie/Julia” changed food writing Wed, 02 Nov 2022 21:33:00 +0000 Comment this story Comment When Julie Powell, a 29-year-old low-level “government drone” living in Queens, decided in 2002 to cook all the recipes from Julia Child’s epic “Mastering the Art of French Cooking” and talk about it on her personal blog, she called the self-imposed mission “deranged”. In her first message, she postulated that the […]]]>


When Julie Powell, a 29-year-old low-level “government drone” living in Queens, decided in 2002 to cook all the recipes from Julia Child’s epic “Mastering the Art of French Cooking” and talk about it on her personal blog, she called the self-imposed mission “deranged”.

In her first message, she postulated that the task could cost her marriage or her job. “365 days. 536 recipes. A girl and a shitty kitchen from the outer district, ”she wrote. “How far will he go? We can only wait. And wait. And wait…. The Julie/Julia project. Coming soon to a computer station near you.

Obituary: Julie Powell, food writer behind ‘Julie & Julia’, dies aged 49

Powell then had no idea what would happen to those words typed on his keyboard. Her blog, then a rare breed, would attract thousands of readers and eventually earn her a six-figure deal for a bestselling book that was turned into a 2009 film starring Amy Adams as Powell and Meryl Streep in the child role.

They started a cultural phenomenon that would nurture a new generation’s affection for Child and his butter-laden kitchen, prompting twenties — who were not just “servantless,” as Child described to his readers, but who also lacked the culinary skills and lots of money – to try classics like beef bourguignon and lobster thermidor in their own group house and workshop kitchens. But the most lasting legacy of Powell, who died last week at 49 of cardiac arrest, may be the way we write about food. His style, unlike the lofty, sophisticated prose previously found in cookbooks and mainstream publications, was the kind of naked, personal honesty you were more likely to find in late-night conversation around a cocktail with a girlfriend than in the pages of Gourmet.

Food writers from MFK Fisher to AJ Leibling had long mixed their own narratives with those about the food they ate, but Powell’s was much rawer, filled with the minutiae of Gen X scrapping, where cat vomit and Netflix rentals and takeout pizzas and too much vodka tendrils served as the backdrop for gratins and shortcrust pastry. It was the kind of thing that couldn’t even be described as “denominational” because there was no implied excuse.

For many young writers, her lack of pretension — and the fact that she was an unaccredited intruder into the typically closed world of food writing — was inspirational. His project spawned a slew of bloggers who launched their own “cooking” projects in which they cooked (and wrote) their way through classic culinary tomes including “The French Laundry Cookbook” and the 1,300 Recipes “The Gourmet Cookbook”. Others found liberation in its gritty honesty.

“Most of the food writers I had read up to that point were writing really polished prose — everyone from Ruth Reichl to Jeffrey Steingarten,” says Adam Roberts, who started his own food blog, Amateur Gourmet, in 2004 and who writes now. cookbooks and a newsletter. “Julie showed us that you don’t have to be formal to write about food; in fact, being too formal was a liability…it puts a wall between you and your readers. She tore down that wall by being outrageous and vulnerable and off-the-cuff and bad-tempered and all the things you’re not supposed to be as a professional food writer.

Some corners of the literary establishment were unimpressed. Although Powell’s blog was picked up by Salon and her 2005 book “Julie & Julia” was an unqualified success, selling around 1 million copies, “there was a lot of misdirected derision towards the blogs at the time,” recalls David Lebovitz, a cookbook author. and former pastry chef Chez Panisse who was himself one of the pioneers of the culinary blog.

In a New York Times review of the book, reviewer David Kamp compared it (unflatteringly, of course) to “Sex and the City” and chick light novels. “‘Julie and Julia’ still has too much blogging in its DNA: it has messy incontinence, no matter what comes to mind, taking us where we’d rather not go,” he sniffed.

But Powell herself despised most of the establishment’s culinary writings and never sought to ape it. “Overall, it’s a genre beset by twee-ness. And I could never figure it out,” she wrote in an early blog post, before describing a success with Child’s Tarragon Skillet Chicken. “‘Jesus!’ I’d think I was reading yet another sarcastic Fairway anthem, another article about surviving air travel on those harrowing flights to Italy with some gourmet edibles. ‘Why can’t you write?’”

But Powell, whose early success coincided with the growing popularity of the Food Network and its stable of stars, had the last laugh, unfiltered. Lebovitz draws a line between his freewheeling blog posts, warts and more, and the current state of food media, where personality and voice are often valued above technical prowess or the plaudits of prestigious institutions. . “What I realized is that a lot of us are personalities,” he says. “Ina Garten doesn’t do anything revolutionary. She makes good food that turns out to be good, but now what sets people apart is the voice, that conversational tone.

Dianne Jacob, food writer and editor and author of “Will Write for Food,” says Powell introduced a way of marrying personality and food that now seems commonplace. “She was irreverent and grumpy, ranting about married life and kitchen disasters, recording her meltdowns and triumphs,” Jacobs says. “His writing came from the heart, with little filter and angst. That’s what sets her apart. Before her, there were cookbooks and feature articles, but nothing so personal.

Powell’s personality may have paved the way for others, but Jacobs says his work remains singular. “After her, thousands of imitators followed,” she says. “But they didn’t bare their hearts in the same way.”

Isolationism may be tempting, but it’s utopian – and dangerous Sun, 30 Oct 2022 22:31:06 +0000 Isolationism is tempting. We can look at the world and see distant wars as local disputes which, however tragic, have no impact on our lives. War in Ukraine? This must be another eruption of ancient tribal hatreds and we must stay away from it. Moreover, we may be tempted to blame conflicts in distant lands […]]]>

Isolationism is tempting. We can look at the world and see distant wars as local disputes which, however tragic, have no impact on our lives. War in Ukraine? This must be another eruption of ancient tribal hatreds and we must stay away from it. Moreover, we may be tempted to blame conflicts in distant lands on our own actions, our rivals answering only to us and our presence nearby. Therefore, as some suggest, Russia had to invade Ukraine because we were bringing a pro-Russian Kyiv into our camp. Either way, the result is a call for disengagement from the world: let’s go home and lead a quiet life.

These views become more important at election time. They appeal to large sections of the electorate because they promise national welfare at no cost. We can live better by doing less! On the right side of the spectrum, it is a call to rebuild the United States with the money supposedly saved by withdrawing from foreign policy. On the left side, it is a call to amplify national social engineering while letting post-modern international institutions take care of the world. Both advocate isolationism for different purposes and with different logics behind them.

And both are pernicious because they promise something that simply isn’t true: peace and well-being at a lower cost.

The idea that the United States can separate itself from the tribulations of the world stems from the belief that the Pacific and Atlantic oceans are the greatest buffers in history. They allow, according to them, the establishment of an autarkic republic, satisfied with its separation from the world disorder and self-sufficient in its material needs.

Not surprisingly, many of the ideal states devised by some of the greatest minds in Western political traditions were islands. At the beginning of the 16th century, Saint Thomas More, for example, drew his “Utopia”, a perfect state, on a peninsula which the first king would then separate from the mainland by digging a wide canal. The island allows for isolation, which in turn should allow for domestic harmony established by well-structured laws and balanced governance.

As attractive as such a vision is, it is nowhere to be found in real life. Thomas More, after all, called it ‘Utopia’, a place that doesn’t exist anywhere. As the patron saint of politicians, he warns us not to build politics that are, literally, not on this earth.

For the United States, the oceans are not moats that can seal us off from the world. On the contrary, they are highways that connect us to the rest of the world (and to Eurasia in particular), allowing us to trade with it but also bringing us distant problems. Modern technology only makes such a distance less protective than a century ago.

The other belief at the base of the isolationist temptation is that our actions and our presence abroad are the first source of problems. It used to be a claim coming mostly from the left side of the political spectrum, blaming America for all the ills in the world. But recently, it has also taken hold of some conservative voices. The argument is that a Promethean ideology of progressivism continues to push imperial frontiers into countries that reject it. The war in Ukraine, for example, is thus seen as being caused by the Western attempt to bring that country back into its sphere. And Vladimir Putin, according to this logic, was forced to react to this progressive imperialism.

In reality, Russia has its own plans and acts accordingly. It is not an empty vessel filled with the resentment of the West and acting only in response to it. He continues to pursue a westward strategy, brutally conquering lands in order to assert his dominance. It grows when and where it can. Likewise, China is an autocratic state, driven by a strong Leninist-nationalist ideology, eager to incorporate countries that are not eager to fall under its sway. In other words, the problem is not that the United States is abroad, but that Russia and China want to extend their empires over the countries that reject them. Our withdrawal will not end Russian and Chinese aggression.

As tempting as it is, isolationism is therefore based on false premises and is dangerous. It’s utopian. Pursuing it will literally get you nowhere.

Jakub Grygiel is a professor of politics at the Catholic University of America and a fellow at the Institute for Human Ecology.

Kyle Farmer’s estimated referee salary is high, maybe even too high Thu, 27 Oct 2022 10:00:00 +0000 MLB Trade Rumors regularly publishes a projection of what each arbitration-eligible player’s salary is likely to be over the coming season. The Cincinnati Reds have 11 players in officiating this offseason. Among them is last year’s team MVP, Kyle Farmer. The Reds infielder led Cincinnati in several significant categories and was a leader on the […]]]>

MLB Trade Rumors regularly publishes a projection of what each arbitration-eligible player’s salary is likely to be over the coming season. The Cincinnati Reds have 11 players in officiating this offseason.

Among them is last year’s team MVP, Kyle Farmer. The Reds infielder led Cincinnati in several significant categories and was a leader on the field and at the clubhouse.

But is Kyle Farmer’s estimated umpire number too high for what he actually delivers on the court? MLB Trade Rumors projects Farmer to gross $5.9 million in 2023.

First, let’s dismiss the idea that the Cincinnati Reds can’t afford the services of Kyle Farmer in 2023. The Reds only have two guaranteed contracts (Joey Votto and Mike Moustakas) on their books next season, so Cincinnati can more than afford to pay Farmer $5.9 million.

The Reds signed Donovan Solano to a one-year/$4.5 million deal last spring and the veteran posted a .284/.339/.385 slant line with an OPS+ of 97. Last season, Farmer had reached 0.255 / 0.315 /. 386 with an OPS+ of 90.

The question is whether or not the Reds could pay the nearly $6 million for Farmer’s services in 2023, but whether they should. Next year’s Reds squad will be full of young players (Spencer Steer, Jose Barrero, Alejo Lopez, etc.) who need playing time to develop.

While it’s hard to see Kyle Farmer not soft from the Cincinnati Reds due to his popularity with the fan base, one also has to wonder if signing the veteran for $6 million is a wise move.

Perhaps the best move the Reds could make would be to offer Farmer a mutually beneficial two-year contract extension for him and the ball club. Having a reliable veteran infielder with Farmer’s positional versatility is highly valuable to most teams, but that estimated $6 million salary might be too much for the Reds’ blood.

Next. Far too early roster predictions for Reds 2023 opening day. dark

A Prayer to Release the Idea that I Can Do Everything Myself – Your Daily Prayer – October 24 Mon, 24 Oct 2022 05:00:00 +0000 A prayer to release the idea that I can do everything myselfBy Alisha Headley “And he said to me, ‘My grace is sufficient for you, for my strength is made perfect in your weakness…'” (2 Corinthians 12:9a) We live in a culture where the word “self” is often praised. We see it all […]]]>

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A prayer to release the idea that I can do everything myself
By Alisha Headley

“And he said to me, ‘My grace is sufficient for you, for my strength is made perfect in your weakness…'” (2 Corinthians 12:9a)

We live in a culture where the word “self” is often praised. We see it all over social media, highlighted in books and articles, and it was coined this generation’s catchphrase, and emphasized by motivational speakers and influencers. We hear words like self-help, self-care, and self-sufficiency as a common theme. These words may seem stimulating at first, but they lead to a life based only on ourselves, in our own strength and in our own sufficiency. It feeds us the lie that we only need ourselves and can do everything on our own, so we push God away.

Often we can experience exhaustion or exhaustion trying to depend only on ourselves. When we depend on ourselves daily, it can cause us to daily deny our need for Jesus.

In today’s verse he is talking about the opposite of self-sufficiency. As a Christian, the more time we spend with the Lord to understand the gospel, the more we begin to understand our great need for a Savior. It is when we find ourselves in our exhausted efforts to save ourselves that we realize our true need of God. Today’s passage talks about how God is sufficient, and that he is more than sufficient. It is in our weakness, our exhaustion and our own efforts that we realize that “His strength is fulfilled in our weakness”. Christ is enough for us, and we will always fall short when we try to do it in our own strength.

We must go to the Lord in our inadequacies to relieve ourselves of exhaustion by trying to do it on our own. We need to read his word daily and plant his truth and his ways in our hearts, rather than telling ourselves what the culture tells us as we try to find inner strength. It is the strength of God that will make our weakness perfect. We cannot do everything by ourselves with our own strength. He is “in his strength, so that we can do everything. (Philippians 4:13)

2 Cor.  12:9

Let’s pray.

My God,
Thank you for leaving us the Bible for such wisdom as in today’s verse. Thanks for the reminder that for all the things we strive to do in our own strength, you never designed for us to do. You designed us to depend on you and your strength. Forgive us for relying on ourselves and being sucked into what society tells us and the enemy pushes us, that we can do it all on our own. Lord, we need you. Apart from you, we can do nothing” as John 15:5 tell us.

We ask you to remind us of our shortcomings and we ask you to forgive us as we humbly come before you confessing that we have relied on ourselves for many things in our lives. Remind us to abide in your Word daily to remind us of our undying need for you. May your word speak to us continually, and reassure us that we are not alone enough, but that we are enough in You. The more we rely on you and your Word, the less we rely on ourselves. It is in You that we are more than sufficient, and we thank You for this beautiful promise today. We love you and are very grateful for your word.

In the name of Jesus,

Photo credit: ©SalemDesign/BethanyPyle

Alisha Headley is a writer + speaker who wants to meet the everyday woman in her daily life with biblical truth. Stepping into her true calling, she left the corporate world as a former VP of finance to love her family as a housewife + dog mom, while still being able to pursue her passion as a writer. Healing from a chapter of life plagued by the lies she once believed about herself, she is inspired to point women to Christ to experience the freedom + power to overcome those lies with the truth written in the word of God. In her spare time, Alisha enjoys road trips across the country, working out so she can eat her favorite foods, and creatively styling her outfits with crafts for fashion. Alisha is a proud wife and dog mom living in Scottsdale, Arizona.

You can follow her blog by visiting her website or connect with her on facebook + instagram.

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News from Liz Truss – latest: Michael Gove says PM removal is ‘a matter of when, not if’ Wed, 19 Oct 2022 01:07:24 +0000 Moment Liz Truss appears in Commons after mysterious absence Arch-Liz Truss critic Michael Gove said it was a matter of when, not if the Prime Minister leaves office, warning the public to expect ‘a lot of pain over the next two months “. The former upgrade secretary said ‘we are going through hell’ and need […]]]>

Moment Liz Truss appears in Commons after mysterious absence

Arch-Liz Truss critic Michael Gove said it was a matter of when, not if the Prime Minister leaves office, warning the public to expect ‘a lot of pain over the next two months “.

The former upgrade secretary said ‘we are going through hell’ and need ‘hard economic medicine’ to reduce inflation and recover the economy from the damage of Ms Truss’ mini-budget.

Asked if it’s ‘no longer about if Liz Truss goes, but when she goes’, Mr Gove agreed that was ‘absolutely correct’.

He added: “The question for any leader is what happens when the program or platform you provided leadership on has been shredded.”

Earlier Downing Street revealed that Ms Truss was no longer determined to raise state pensions in line with inflation as her new chancellor seeks to cut public spending by deviating from the failed growth strategy of the Prime Minister.

A spokesman said ministers could abandon the long-standing triple lockdown, which requires the government to raise pensions whichever is greater – 2.5%, wages or inflation.


Welsh secretary warns against ousting Truss

Welsh Secretary Sir Robert Buckland has warned Tory MPs who are considering ousting Liz Truss as Prime Minister to ‘be careful what you wish for’.

The Cabinet Minister told BBC Newsnight: ‘The more leaders the Conservative Party changes, the stronger the case for a general election becomes.

“Now Labor wants the Tories to cut and change another leader because they think their best opportunity is a snap election.

“I say to my colleagues, be careful what you wish for. An early election benefits no one, including the Conservative Party and certainly not the country. »


Britain backs down with these people in charge | Comment

Alastair Campbell joined The Independent‘s call for an election.

He writes: Four prime ministers in six years. Four Chancellors of the Exchequer in as many months. Even collapsing Greece couldn’t come close.

The people who gave us this disaster are not the people to get us out of it. The idea that they should be able to install a fifth prime minister without reference to the general public is democratic obscenity.

Learn more about Alastair Campbell here:


Jacob Rees-Mogg faces legal challenge over fracking plans | Exclusive

Jacob Rees-Mogg is facing legal action over his decision to lift the fracking moratorium in England (Andre Bécasse writing).

Environmental and community groups have sent a legal letter, seen by The Independentto notify the Business Secretary of their intention to seek judicial review of his decision, on the grounds that it was ‘unlawful’ to overturn the 2019 ban on the controversial gas extraction method without new scientific evidence to prove that she is sure.

The decision by Friends of the Earth, Talk Fracking and Preston New Road Action Group comes as MPs vote on a Labor bid to ban fracking ‘once and for all’ through a parliamentary vote.


Ex-DWP secretary warns of threat to pensions

A former work and pensions secretary has added his voice to growing Tory opposition to Liz Truss’ potential abandonment of her pledge to raise state pensions in line with inflation.

Stephen Crabb said The Telegraph“Now is not the time to consider abandoning the triple lockdown, especially after such clear promises were made after the last temporary pause.

“Maintaining the value of the public pension during the cost of living crisis is essential.”

Downing Street today indicated ministers could scrap the triple state pension lockdown, which requires the government to increase payments in line with the greater of 2.5%, inflation or wages.


Lost the plot’: Liz Truss voters deliver damning verdict on PM so far

So far, residents of the Liz Truss constituency in south-west Norfolk have given damning criticism of their MP’s time as Prime Minister.

After just six weeks in office, Ms Truss’s premiership has been turbulent, with the mini-budget sending the pound plummeting and a number of Tory MPs publicly calling for her to step down.

Here’s what locals think of their representative:

Truss voters discuss his prospects


Britain cannot go on like this. We call for elections – now

It’s time for the people to have their say.

here’s why The Independent calls for general elections:


Jeremy Hunt meets the leader of the 1922 committee

Chancellor Jeremy Hunt today met Sir Graham Brady, chairman of the powerful 1922 committee of Conservative backbenchers.

Treasury sources confirmed the meeting, saying it was a briefing ahead of Mr Hunt’s appearance in 1922 on Wednesday.

It comes after Sir Graham met Liz Truss on Monday, a meeting the No 10 said was ‘pre-planned’ and in which his lack of support from Tory MPs likely emerged.

More than 100 MPs are said to be ready to submit letters of censure to Sir Graham in a bid to oust the Prime Minister.


What is 55 Tufton Street? The house that ‘crashed’ the UK economy

Political activist group Led by Donkeys has gone viral with a new video in which three of its members climb a ladder to place a fake blue plaque outside 55 Tufton Street in Westminster, central London, a house Georgian townhouse home to a number of right-wing think tanks beloved of Liz Truss (Joe Sommerlad writing).

‘The UK economy has collapsed here,’ the memorial sign reads, pointing to the date of September 23, 2022, the day Ms Truss’s now former Chancellor Kwasi Kwarteng presented his disastrous and no-frills ‘mini budget’ figure, which proposed reckless tax cuts. and heavy borrowing in times of high inflation.

Mr Kwarteng’s budget program – undeniably radical but deeply flawed, as it turned out – was said to have been drawn up with the Prime Minister, a friend and neighbor of the so-called ‘Greenwich ensemble’, but only served to spook global financial markets, forcing Ms Truss into a series of embarrassing policy reversals and the Bank of England to buy up huge amounts of public debt to prop up pension funds.


Tory MP says Liz Truss ‘experiment’ failed

Senior Tory MP Tobias Ellwood said Liz Truss conducted an “experiment” with the economy that failed.

But he said there was a ‘calmer Westminster’ on Tuesday compared to the past few days and weeks as ‘we started to understand again what Tories usually do well’.

The defense committee chairman, who recently had the Tory whip reinstated after he was suspended for missing a vote of confidence in Boris Johnson’s government, said Channel 4 News“There’s no doubt about it, it’s an experiment we conducted with the economy and it didn’t go well. And there is a recognition that now we have to reboot, we have to reset, we have to regroup.

He added: “The mechanic in which we chose our leader, I think, is the central problem that [meant] we ended up where we are today.

“If you just ask our members what direction they want to go, you will get specific answers. And what was clear was that productivity growth has been an issue in the UK since 2008.

“Liz Truss presented a set of measures that were clearly too radical, they did not include an understanding of international headwinds.”


MPs support buffer zones for abortion clinics

MPs backed proposals to introduce buffer zones around abortion clinics and hospitals in England and Wales.

The House of Commons voted 297 to 110, majority 187, in favor of an amendment to the Public Order Bill to provide greater protection for women by preventing protesters from gathering.

The move, pushed by a cross-party group of MPs, would introduce buffer zones around abortion clinics and hospitals where it would be prohibited to interfere, intimidate or harass women accessing abortion services or people who provide them.

Those found guilty could face up to six months in prison for a first offense or two years for further offences.

A buffer zone would apply to an area within 150 meters of any part of an abortion clinic or an access point to any building or site containing an abortion clinic. MPs were given a free vote on the matter.

Kylian Mbappé’s tantrums and squabbles a new twist in PSG’s boring pantomime | Kylian Mbappe Sat, 15 Oct 2022 16:30:00 +0000 Olike a moment ago, last August, when Christophe Galtier wondered what had happened? Did he see his Paris Saint-Germain team score 21 goals in their first four games of the season and wonder how easy it all was? Take what is probably the most brilliant attacking line in the history of the game, let them […]]]>

Olike a moment ago, last August, when Christophe Galtier wondered what had happened? Did he see his Paris Saint-Germain team score 21 goals in their first four games of the season and wonder how easy it all was? Take what is probably the most brilliant attacking line in the history of the game, let them play and watch the brilliant goals pile up. Lionel Messi, after a disappointing first season in Paris, has regained energy. Neymar, playing alongside his companion, was in full swing. And Kylian Mbappe…

Well, what was Mbappé? He was still incredibly fast. He scored four goals in those first four games of the season, but the signs of discontent were already there. Of course they were, because this is PSG, where discontent is rampant, a club described by one recent former manager as “a nest of vipers”. Mbappé may have just, thanks in part to the intervention of the President of the Republic, Emmanuel Macron, snubbing Real Madrid to sign a three-year contract extension worth around £50m a year. and with a £100m signing bonus, but he wasn’t happy.

to which the only conceivable reaction may be a sigh of weariness – even if, since Succession, we’re apparently fine with dramas in which each side is deeply unsympathetic. More and more frequently in the increasingly sordid world of modern elite football, you wonder what football is all about.

Real Madrid president Florentino Pérez seems to assume it’s a tool to make him money (and look at the recent Champions League performances of his fellow Super League stalwarts Juventus and Barcelona; why wouldn’t they be entitled to more?). The only owners who seem not to have bought into the perpetual growth fallacy wholesale are those who use the game as an agent of soft power, to massage their images and secure a platform in Western Europe. The idea that maybe football is just a sport, with people striving to be as good at it as possible and lots of people enjoying watching them, seems incredibly quaint.

Perhaps football is not a commodity, its value to be determined by its usefulness in the market: perhaps that is just what it is. And that thing, whatever it is, at least in England, has never been so popular; attendance figures today, in all divisions, are even higher than during the post-war boom. Maybe it’s not broken. Maybe we don’t need to destroy this great pyramid of interconnected communities just because the old elites make such a mess of it.

Mbappé takes on Neymar who is set to take a penalty against Montpellier after the Frenchman missed a kick earlier. Photography: Aurélien Meunier/PSG/Getty Images

The deal Mbappé signed this summer came with some understanding that, through Luís Campos, one of two PSG managers who actually function as sporting directors, he would have a say in the direction of the club. Mbappé apparently wanted PSG to invest in young local talent with a view to adopting a more modern and pressing approach. And it is quite realistic to believe that this style would give PSG a better chance of winning the Champions League.

The redevelopment, however, has been slower than expected, largely because the other de facto sporting director, Antero Henrique, has struggled to advance players, which has strained relations between Campos and the board. ‘administration.

But the biggest obstacle to implementing an integrated and pressing style is PSG’s reliance on stardom. Messi is 35 and no longer physically capable of continuing every game, even if he wanted to. Neymar is 30 and has rarely shown the application required to press consistently. Mbappé, meanwhile, has attempted just 58 league pressures this season, significantly fewer than Messi or Neymar; even taking into account that wide forwards tend to press more than those in the middle, Mbappé himself is the biggest obstacle to the type of football he is supposed to foster.

Mbappé, in fairness, seems aware of this problem and has suggested that three big stars in a team is too many, that it should just be him and one other. But even the idea of ​​a star is contrary to a real hurried style. Why do stars, if by star you mean extreme talent, enjoy special privileges? Why not have 11 players of different levels of excellence who all work extremely hard for the team (as is the case with the best teams of Pep Guardiola or Jürgen Klopp)?

PSG’s third league game of the season was a 5-2 win against Montpellier. Mbappé missed an early penalty and so when PSG won a second, Neymar insisted on taking it: Mbappé fumed. He pulled off the extraordinary feat of making Neymar look like he was mature. In the same match, Vitinha led a break and when he opted for a simple pass to Messi rather than a difficult backhand to Mbappé, the Frenchman, rather than continuing his run to support the attack, stopped. , actually sulking because he didn’t get the ball. Mbappé is 23 years old.

Rumors have been circulating for months that a coldness had slipped into the Parisian romance of Mbappé and Neymar. It now seems that Mbappé wanted to sell Neymar this summer. He doesn’t like playing as a central striker in a top three. He wants a robust central striker to occupy the defence, so he can drop into space – as he is doing alongside Olivier Giroud for France. After last week’s 0-0 draw at Reims, in which both Mbappé and Neymar were booked for petulant late fouls, Mbappé openly criticized Galtier’s tactics on Instagram.

This is the dysfunctional manger chaired by Nasser al-Khelaifi, the president of PSG and the man who, as president of the European Club Association, will shape the development of football. The French newspaper Release recently linked him to the jailing of a Qatari businessman who allegedly had “compromising information” about the 2022 World Cup bid.

Al-Khelaifi’s lawyers have categorically and absolutely denied any connection to the businessman’s imprisonment as well as any charges regarding Al-Khelaifi’s role. Then there were claims this week – vigorously denied by the club who said they had “never contacted any agency with the aim of harming individuals or institutions” – that PSG employed an external agency to attack Mbappé on social networks.

What club. What a world. What a sport it has become – and what a future it apparently faces: absurdly wealthy owners with little regard for the sport itself soothing the temper tantrums of absurdly paid stars, forever.