At the local convenience store, my wife Jo handed the clerk a $5 bill and waited for her change; finally asking for it. The clerk said, “We have a coin shortage. We have to round things to the nearest dollar.” Screw that! She dug in her purse, cobbled together the correct change and demanded the clerk give her a dollar back – while the line of “social distanced” customers behind her grew long.
The next day she bought a fountain Coke, normally $1.00 plus tax. The clerk said, “$1.00 please.” The merchant absorbed the tax. There are signs in the local stores saying they have a shortage and will buy rolled coins.
My BS meter went into full alert. A government capable of putting a man on the moon could solve a coin shortage in a matter of a few weeks. If there is a shortage, it’s because some politicos, or bankers want to create one.
During this summer of madness in Portland, Oregon, and sadness over COVID-19, two below-the-radar events occurred implicating the insatiable appetite of the United States government to spy on everyone in America. Regular readers of this column know that the feds have been wearing away at our privacy rights using a multitude of means. Yet, these two below-the-fold events this summer have caught the feds flatfooted.
Here is the backstory.
After the calamity of Watergate, Congress investigated the nature and extent of FBI and CIA spying on Americans as ordered by President Richard Nixon. A Senate committee headed by the late Sen. Frank Church, D-Idaho, in 1975 made such startling revelations of warrantless and unlawful spying on Americans pursuant to presidential whims — going back to FDR — that it offered legislation to provide judicial oversight.
The legislation is the Foreign Intelligence Surveillance Act of 1978. It established the FISA Court, with a rotating membership of federal district court judges appointed to it by the chief justice.
FISA is profoundly unconstitutional because it authorizes the judges on the FISA Court to issue search warrants using a lesser standard of proof than what the Constitution requires. The Fourth Amendment requires proof of the likelihood of evidence of crimes in the place to be searched as a precondition for the issuance of search warrants, and it requires specification of the place to be searched or the person or thing to be seized.…
As researchers and journalists try to understand how the coronavirus pandemic is affecting people’s behavior, they have repeatedly relied on location information from smartphones. The data allows for an expansive look at the movements of millions of people, but it raises troublesome questions about privacy.
In several articles, The New York Times has used location data provided by a company called Cuebiq, which analyzes data for advertisers and marketers. This data comes from smartphone users who have agreed to share their locations with certain apps, such as ones that provide weather alerts or information on local gas stations. Cuebiq helps app makers use technology like GPS to determine the location of people’s phones, and in turn some of the app makers provide data to Cuebiq for it to analyze.
It can be difficult for people to keep track of whether and how their data is being gathered. Android-based devices and iPhones both require apps to ask users to enable location services before collecting the information, but the explanations people see when prompted to give permission are often incomplete or misleading. An app may tell users that granting access to their location will help them get weather alerts, but not mention that the data will be sold.…
Reading the late Hans Rosling’s 2018 book, Factfulness, during the summer of 2020 creates a sensation of surrealness that would have been absent had I read this volume in 2018 or 2019. On nearly every page of Factfulness Rosling busts the popular myth that we denizens of modernity face imminent calamities that will destroy us and the earth. Widespread fears – such as of overpopulation, of terrorism, and of the rich getting richer while the poor stagnate – are methodically revealed to be either completely unjustified or exorbitantly exaggerated.
But today, in the midst of the ongoing lockdowns and with no end in sight to the hysteria over COVID, I’ve lost all of the natural optimism that has long resided within me and that would have otherwise been fortified by Rosling’s splendid work.
The image that keeps coming into my head is of a sledgehammer. With brute force, a blunt and heavy instrument was swung down on society by the state. Sledgehammers crush. They demolish. That’s their only function. They do not build. And for as long as the dreadful weight of this particular sledgehammer – the massive mallet that is the COVID-19 lockdown – continues to press down on the rubble that it caused, there is very little opportunity for the human creativity and work effort unleashed by markets to bring about the kind of improvements that Rosling documents.…
And so it begins again, the never-ending, semi-delusional, train-wreck of an election cycle in which the American people allow themselves to get worked up into a frenzy over the misguided belief that the future of this nation—nay, our very lives—depends on who we elect as president.
For the next three months, Americans will be dope-fed billions of dollars’ worth of political propaganda aimed at keeping them glued to their television sets and persuading them that 1) their votes count and 2) electing the right candidate will fix everything that is wrong with this country.
Incredible, isn’t it, that in a country of more than 330 million people, we are given only two choices for president? How is it that in a country teeming with creative, intelligent, productive, responsible, moral people, our vote too often comes down to pulling the lever for the lesser of two evils?
The system is rigged, of course.
It is a heavily scripted, tightly choreographed, star-studded, ratings-driven, mass-marketed, costly exercise in how to sell a product—in this case, a presidential candidate—to dazzled consumers who will choose image over substance almost every time.
As author Noam Chomsky rightly observed, “It is important to bear in mind that political campaigns are designed by the same people who sell toothpaste and cars.”…
In a great suppression of free speech, technocrats working the COVID-19 pandemic are shaming, ridiculing, bullying and marginalizing anyone who questions their pseudo-science and shifting positions. The state-mandated wearing of face masks, social distancing and contact tracing are all unconstitutional and in some cases, illegal.
Once upon a time, there was something called science. It included the discovery of truth about nature, the elements, the universe, etc. It was practiced by honest and accountable practitioners called scientists and engineers. They often invented cool new things as a result of their studies, but generally they had no primal urge to use their knowledge to dominate other people, groups or even entire societies.
Then certain other scientists and engineers rose up and made a discovery of their own. If true science was ever-so-slightly skewed and engineering disciplines were applied to society at large, then they could indeed use their “knowledge” to dominate and control other people, groups, entire societies or even, heaven forbid, the entire planet.
The first group pursued science. The second group pursued pseudo-science.
Merriam-Webster defines pseudo-science as “a system of theories, assumptions, and methods erroneously regarded as scientific.” The Oxford dictionary clarifies by stating, “a collection of beliefs or practices mistakenly regarded as being based on scientific method.…
You know about “security theatre,” right? That’s the kind of take-off-your-shoes-and-belt nonsense that was instituted at the airport post-9/11 to give passengers the feeling that the government was protecting them from those dastardly Al-CIA-da terrorists.
Of course, these measures do nothing to actually prevent terrorism. Even the MSM mouthpiece media was forced to admit that the TSA never caught a single terrorist with such practices.
But that’s not the point. These procedures are only there to give the impression that agencies like the TSA are actually keeping the public safe.
Well, guess what? As we transition from the post-9/11 “homeland security” paradigm to the post-COVID “biosecurity” paradigm, there is now an equivalent to the security theatre phenomenon taking shape: biosecurity theatre.
I know you’ve noticed it already. The stickers on the floor at the supermarket telling you exactly where to stand when lining up at the cash register. The “one-way aisles” telling you which way to walk as you do your shopping. The infrared thermometer guns pointed suggestively at your head before you enter a public building, as if such a device could actually detect a fever within a fraction of a second of “scanning.”
Of course these gadgets and procedures are not meant to stop the spread of any infectious pathogen.…
AntibodiesThe topic of antibodies is becoming more important again due to the manufactured COVID crisis. It is important that you grasp the nature and function of antibodies, as well as their limitations, since the New World Order (NWO) manipulators orchestrating Operation Coronavirus are counting on your ignorance as they continue to roll out their tyrannical agenda. Specifically, they are counting on most of the public buying into the antibody-protection paradigm. What does this mean? By that term, I mean that they want you to believe that if you have certain antibodies, or a certain amount of antibodies (measured by titer), that you will be safe and protected from a certain disease. This plays out in 2 ways: firstly, they want you to trust the accuracy and authority of COVID antibody tests (even though there are many flaws, at least 5 as I touched upon in this article), but secondly and more importantly, they want you to trust the pending COVID vaccine (and all vaccines), since the efficacy of every single vaccine is predicated on the idea that it induces antibodies and therefore immunity. This is the key assumption – and it is patently false.…
If you can’t handle one little arbitrary political abduction at the hands of secret government police, socialism may not be for you.
Socialists protesting in Portland are learning that “The worst thing that can happen to a socialist is to have his country ruled by socialists who are not his friends.” -Ludwig von Mises
See, you might not realize it, but the USA is already heavily influenced by the socialist/ communist philosophy of Karl Marx.
Socialism is more of an umbrella term, meaning centralized control of the means of production– like factories and farming– in the hands of the state.
Communism is more extreme, with complete abolishment of private property, and a dictatorial government that allegedly attempts to distribute wealth “to each according to his need,” and extract labor “from each according to his ability.”
The two are related enough to use them interchangeably for our purposes.
Karl Marx was born over 200 years ago. And despite the utter failure of his communist philosophy in practice, the cult lives on. Still people want to try again… this time they will get it right.