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Edward Snowden On Big Tech Companies, Like Facebook, Censoring & Controlling Information – Collective Evolution

Posted by M. C. on November 30, 2020

These companies are not obligated by the law to do almost any of what they’re actually doing but they’re going above and beyond, to, in many cases, to increase the depth of their relationship (with the government) and the government’s willingness to avoid trying to regulate them in the context of their desired activities, which is ultimately to dominate the conversation and information space of global society in different ways…They’re trying to make you change your behaviour… – Snowden

https://www.collective-evolution.com/2020/11/29/edward-snowden-on-big-tech-censoring-information-joe-biden-press-freedom-dangers/

ByArjun WaliaCE Staff Writer

In Brief

  • The Facts:Glenn Greenwald interviews NSA whistleblower Edward Snowden about Big Tech censorship of information, and the muzzling of journalists who go against the grain.
  • Reflect On:f your perception is built by mainstream media, do you truly know what is going on in the world if they are often working to hide or censor stories that would dramatically change your perception?

Glenn Greenwald is no stranger to censorship, he’s the journalist who worked with Edward Snowden (NSA mass surveillance whistleblower)  to put together his story and release it to the world while working for the Guardian. He eventually left the Guardian and co-founded his own media company, The Intercept, an organization that would be free from censorship and free to report on government corruption and wrong-doings of powerful people and corporations. He recently resigned from The Intercept as well due to the fact that they’ve now censored him, and is now completely independent. You can find his work here.

Anybody who reports on or sheds a bright light onto immoral and unethical actions taken by governments and the powerful corporations they work with has been subjected to extreme censorship. In the case of Edward Snowden, he’s been exiled, and Julian Assange of Wikileaks is currently clinging to his life for exposing war crimes and other unethical actions by multiple governments and corporations. There are many other examples. What does it say about our civilization when we prosecute those who expose harm, corruption, immoral/unethical actions by governments and war crimes?

Greenwald recently interviewed Snowden about internet censorship and the role big tech companies and governments are playing. Greenwald explains that in one of his earliest meetings with Snowden, he (Snowden) explained that he was driven in large part by the vital role the early internet played in his life, “one that was free of corporate and state control, that permitted anonymity and exploration free of monitoring, and, most of all, fostered unrestrained communication and dissemination of information by and among citizens of the world without corporate and state overlords regulating and controlling what they were saying.

This is what he and Snowden go into in the interview posted below. Prior to that I provide a brief summary of Snowden’s key thoughts.

Snowden starts off by mentioning government surveillance programs and the companies they contracted to do this work and compares them to modern day Big Tech giants censoring information on a wide range of topics. We see this today with elections/politics, to medical information dealing with coronavirus and vaccines, for example.

“In secret, these companies had all agreed to work with the U.S. Government far beyond what the law required of them, and that’s what we’re seeing with this new censorship push is really a new direction in the same dynamic. These companies are not obligated by the law to do almost any of what they’re actually doing but they’re going above and beyond, to, in many cases, to increase the depth of their relationship (with the government) and the government’s willingness to avoid trying to regulate them in the context of their desired activities, which is ultimately to dominate the conversation and information space of global society in different ways…They’re trying to make you change your behaviour… – Snowden

So basically, these Big Tech companies have become slaves, if you will, to the governments will, or at least powerful people situated in high places within the government. Snowden brings up the fact that many of these companies are hiring people from the CIA, who come from the Pentagon, who come from the NSA, who have top secret clearances…The government is a customer of all the major cloud service providers. They are also a major regulator of these companies, which gives these companies the incentive to do whatever they want.

This is quite clear if you look at Facebook, Google and Amazon employees. There are many who have come from very high positions within the Department of Defense.

In no case is this more clear than Amazon – Snowden

Amazon appointed Keith Alexander, director of the NSA under Barack Obama.

He was one of the senior architects of the mass surveillance program that courts have repeatedly now declared to be unlawful and unconstitutional….When you have this kind of incentive from a private industry to maintain the warmest possible relationship with the people in government, who not just buy from you but also have the possibility to end your business or change the way you do business…You now see this kind of soft corruption that happens in a constant way. – Snowden

Snowden goes on to explain how people get upset when government, especially the Trump government, tries to set the boundaries of what appropriate speech is by attempting to stop big tech censorship, he then says,

If you’re not comfortable letting the government determine the boundaries of appropriate political speech, why are you begging Mark Zuckerberg to do it?

I think the reality here is…it’s not really about freedom of speech, and it’s not really about protecting people from harm…I think what you see is the internet has become the de facto means of mass communication. That represents influence which represents power, and what we see is we see a whole number of different tribes basically squabbling to try to gain control over this instrument of power.

What we see is an increasing tendency to silence journalists who say things that are in the minority.

In Brief

  • The Facts:Glenn Greenwald interviews NSA whistleblower Edward Snowden about Big Tech censorship of information, and the muzzling of journalists who go against the grain.
  • Reflect On:f your perception is built by mainstream media, do you truly know what is going on in the world if they are often working to hide or censor stories that would dramatically change your perception?

Glenn Greenwald is no stranger to censorship, he’s the journalist who worked with Edward Snowden (NSA mass surveillance whistleblower)  to put together his story and release it to the world while working for the Guardian. He eventually left the Guardian and co-founded his own media company, The Intercept, an organization that would be free from censorship and free to report on government corruption and wrong-doings of powerful people and corporations. He recently resigned from The Intercept as well due to the fact that they’ve now censored him, and is now completely independent. You can find his work here. advertisement – learn more

Anybody who reports on or sheds a bright light onto immoral and unethical actions taken by governments and the powerful corporations they work with has been subjected to extreme censorship. In the case of Edward Snowden, he’s been exiled, and Julian Assange of Wikileaks is currently clinging to his life for exposing war crimes and other unethical actions by multiple governments and corporations. There are many other examples. What does it say about our civilization when we prosecute those who expose harm, corruption, immoral/unethical actions by governments and war crimes?

–> Practice Is Everything: Want to become an effective changemaker? Join CETV and get access to exclusive conversations, courses, and original shows that empower you to embody the changemaker this world needs. Click here to learn more!

Greenwald recently interviewed Snowden about internet censorship and the role big tech companies and governments are playing. Greenwald explains that in one of his earliest meetings with Snowden, he (Snowden) explained that he was driven in large part by the vital role the early internet played in his life, “one that was free of corporate and state control, that permitted anonymity and exploration free of monitoring, and, most of all, fostered unrestrained communication and dissemination of information by and among citizens of the world without corporate and state overlords regulating and controlling what they were saying.

This is what he and Snowden go into in the interview posted below. Prior to that I provide a brief summary of Snowden’s key thoughts.

Snowden starts off by mentioning government surveillance programs and the companies they contracted to do this work and compares them to modern day Big Tech giants censoring information on a wide range of topics. We see this today with elections/politics, to medical information dealing with coronavirus and vaccines, for example.

“In secret, these companies had all agreed to work with the U.S. Government far beyond what the law required of them, and that’s what we’re seeing with this new censorship push is really a new direction in the same dynamic. These companies are not obligated by the law to do almost any of what they’re actually doing but they’re going above and beyond, to, in many cases, to increase the depth of their relationship (with the government) and the government’s willingness to avoid trying to regulate them in the context of their desired activities, which is ultimately to dominate the conversation and information space of global society in different ways…They’re trying to make you change your behaviour… – Snowden advertisement – learn more

So basically, these Big Tech companies have become slaves, if you will, to the governments will, or at least powerful people situated in high places within the government. Snowden brings up the fact that many of these companies are hiring people from the CIA, who come from the Pentagon, who come from the NSA, who have top secret clearances…The government is a customer of all the major cloud service providers. They are also a major regulator of these companies, which gives these companies the incentive to do whatever they want.

This is quite clear if you look at Facebook, Google and Amazon employees. There are many who have come from very high positions within the Department of Defense.

In no case is this more clear than Amazon – Snowden

Amazon appointed Keith Alexander, director of the NSA under Barack Obama.

He was one of the senior architects of the mass surveillance program that courts have repeatedly now declared to be unlawful and unconstitutional….When you have this kind of incentive from a private industry to maintain the warmest possible relationship with the people in government, who not just buy from you but also have the possibility to end your business or change the way you do business…You now see this kind of soft corruption that happens in a constant way. – Snowden

Snowden goes on to explain how people get upset when government, especially the Trump government, tries to set the boundaries of what appropriate speech is by attempting to stop big tech censorship, he then says,

If you’re not comfortable letting the government determine the boundaries of appropriate political speech, why are you begging Mark Zuckerberg to do it?

I think the reality here is…it’s not really about freedom of speech, and it’s not really about protecting people from harm…I think what you see is the internet has become the de facto means of mass communication. That represents influence which represents power, and what we see is we see a whole number of different tribes basically squabbling to try to gain control over this instrument of power.

What we see is an increasing tendency to silence journalists who say things that are in the minority. Stay Aware Subscribe To Our Newsletter  

You can watch the full conversation between Greenwald and Snowden below, the conversation is about 40 minutes long.

https://www.youtube.com/embed/5qEuKCS-czU?start=0&modestbranding=1&showinfo=0&theme=light

Closing Comments: This kind of information almost begs the question, are we ready as a society to truly create and disseminate journalism that is honest, integral and bi-partisan? Why is it that these types of organizations fail or struggle? How do some media companies fail? Well, they no longer stay true to their mission. They fall to the pressure of politics and fall into ideology. How many other times did ideology change what media outlets reported? Yes, it’s almost impossible to have zero bias, but how close can we get to zero? How can we achieve this when media outlets who do not fit within the accepted framework and disseminate information that challenges the popular opinion are constantly being punished for simply putting out information?

As Snowden mentioned above, these Big Tech companies in collusion with governments are literally attempting to not only censor information, but change the behaviour of people as well, especially journalists. When you take away one’s business or livelihood as a result of non-compliance, you are in a way forcing them to comply and do/say things you they way you want them done/said. We’ve experienced massive amounts of censorship and demonetization here at Collective Evolution, but we haven’t changed as a results of it. We simply created CETV, a platform that helps support our work as a result of censorship.

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Which To Celebrate, Pilgrims Or Native Americans? — Manhattan Contrarian

Posted by M. C. on November 30, 2020

The largest of the tribes where the Jesuits had some success in their efforts was known as the Hurons. That tribe inhabited an area south and east of the lake by that name. At the time, the Hurons were engaged in a life-and-death struggle with the Iroquois confederacy, which inhabited a broad swath of what is now upstate New York. From pages 634-35 of the 1983 New American Library edition of Parkman’s book:

The Eriez Indians of my locale were already history by the time of Columbus.

Of course, all of our “smartest” people in academia and government have little or no idea how or why the freedom-based economic order works. What they think they know is that they hate what they call “capitalism,” because it does not create perfect equality and justice between and among all people. So they are completely ready to get rid of this “capitalism” and go back to a world of desperate scarcity and endless conflict.

https://www.manhattancontrarian.com/blog/2020-11-28-hijr9k2nd0zghodf1id33wq6yvsgh5

Francis Menton

This year marks the 400th anniversary of the founding of the Plymouth Colony by the Pilgrims in 1620. Plymouth was the first English settlement to establish itself successfully in the New World. You might think that the four-century mark of that event would be cause for big commemorations. Instead, there has been barely a peep.

Today, the trendy thing is to feel nothing but guilt and shame for the expansion of European civilization, particularly the English version, into North America. After all, there were indigenous people here when the first settlers arrived. What right did the English or other European settlers have to occupy this territory? To demonstrate its politically-correct bona fides, Google affiliate YouTube (among many others) took the occasion of Thanksgiving Day to celebrate instead something they call “Unthanksgiving,” a day of “Indigenous history, activism and resistance”:

Unthanksgiving is about acknowledging, educating, and honoring centuries of Indigenous resistance. Coinciding with New England’s National Day of Mourning, . . . Native Americans and Indigenous persons have shared their experiences, using Unthanksgiving as an opportunity for intergenerational and intercultural dialogue,

Perhaps you may have the idea that prior to the Pilgrims North America was inhabited by Noble Savages living in peace and harmony with nature and each other. Then the evil Europeans arrived to commit plunder and rape and genocide. This is certainly the view pushed by much of trendy academia today, following the lead of America-hating Howard Zinn. But if you want a more full picture of the reality of the Native Americans at the time of early settlement, there are plenty of decent sources to look to. Two that I can recommend are Charles Mann’s “1491,” and Francis Parkman’s “France and England in North America.”

“1491” came out in 2005, and definitely has a more native-admiring perspective than Parkman’s opus, which was published over many years in the late 19th century. Nevertheless, an overriding issue permeates both books in their descriptions of native life pre- and shortly post-Columbus: the Indian tribes were engaged in constant, endless, brutal, murderous warfare against each other. Mann’s book has particularly harrowing accounts of the wars conducted by the Aztecs against their predecessors in the region that is today Mexico City.

Over in Parkman’s work, the portion relating to the French settlement of Canada derives mostly from first-person accounts written by Jesuit missionaries who inserted themselves among the tribes along and north of the St. Lawrence River in the early 1600s. The largest of the tribes where the Jesuits had some success in their efforts was known as the Hurons. That tribe inhabited an area south and east of the lake by that name. At the time, the Hurons were engaged in a life-and-death struggle with the Iroquois confederacy, which inhabited a broad swath of what is now upstate New York. From pages 634-35 of the 1983 New American Library edition of Parkman’s book:

How the quarrel began between the Iroquois and their Huron kindred no man can tell, and it is not worth while to conjecture. . . . The first meeting of white men with the Hurons found them at blows with the Iroquois, and from that time forward, the war raged with increasing fury. Small scalping parties infested the Huron forests, killing squaws in the cornfields, or entering villages at midnight to tomahawk their sleeping inhabitants. Often, too, invasions were made in force. Sometimes towns were set upon and burned, and sometimes there were deadly conflicts in the depths of the forests and the passes of the hills.

Parkman’s account is filled with detail of battles, tortures and executions. Here is an example from page 635:

[In the year 1645] Fortune smiled on the Hurons; and they took, in all, more than a hundred prisoners, who were distributed among their various towns, to be burned. These scenes, with them, occurred always in the night; and it was held to be of the last importance that the torture should be protracted from sunset till dawn. . . . Ononkwaya was among the victims. . . . On the scaffold where he was burned, he wrought himself into a fury which seemed to render him insensible to pain. Thinking him nearly spent, his tormentors scalped him, when, to their amazement, he leaped up, snatched the brands that had been the instruments of his torture, drove the screeching crowd from the scaffold, and held them all at bay, while they pelted him from below with sticks, stones, and showers of live coals. At length he made a false step and fell to the ground, when they seized him and threw him into the fire. . . .

But the wars continued, year after endless year. In 1649-50, the Iroquois got the upper hand, and essentially wiped out the Hurons. One example of the fighting in that year, from page 664-65:

Late in the autumn, a thousand Iroquois, chiefly Senecas and Mohawks, had taken the war-path for the Hurons. They had been all winter in the forests, hunting for subsistence, and moving at their leisure towards their prey. . . . It was just before dawn, when a yell, as of a legion of devils, startled the wretched inhabitants [of a Huron town the French called St. Ignace] from their sleep; and the Iroquois, bursting in upon them, cut them down with knives and hatchets, killing many, and reserving the rest for a worse fate. . . .

There is much, much more of the same and indeed far worse. Given the endless and brutal warfare that characterized Native American existence, it is not surprising that many native groups, upon encountering Europeans, sought to enlist the newcomers as allies against their perpetual enemies in neighboring tribes. Indeed, in Mann’s account, that is exactly what Chief Massasoit of the Wampanoags was about in befriending the Pilgrims and assisting them through their first difficult winter. The Wampanoags had just suffered a major population decline — probably the result of diseases brought by Europeans — and they needed help against their perpetual enemies the Narragansetts, who lived immediately to the West. The newcomers had things that the Wampanoags badly needed in that struggle, like knives, hatchets, and even guns.

As Parkman said, the origins of the particular dispute in the 1600s between the Hurons and the Iroquois are beyond knowing. But what we do know is that groups of humans in hunter-gatherer existence are always engaged in warfare against their neighbors. Specific slights or jealousies may have something to do with any given dispute, but on a more fundamental level, hunter-gatherers exist at all times on the brink of starvation, and there is never enough territory to go around.

In contrast, over the past several centuries, beginning in Europe and then spreading through the world, mankind has created an economic system that is capable of providing plentifully for multiple billions of people without need for warfare over control of resources. The system goes by the misnomer of “capitalism.” I prefer calling it the “freedom-based economic order.” Under this economic system, it is entirely possible for all people to live in peace and prosperity, without any need for the warfare that has plagued human existence from the beginning.

Of course, all of our “smartest” people in academia and government have little or no idea how or why the freedom-based economic order works. What they think they know is that they hate what they call “capitalism,” because it does not create perfect equality and justice between and among all people. So they are completely ready to get rid of this “capitalism” and go back to a world of desperate scarcity and endless conflict.

Be seeing you

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Why Chesterton Despised Thanksgiving Day | Intellectual Takeout

Posted by M. C. on November 30, 2020

Chesterton, to put it mildly, was not a fan of Puritanism in any of its guises. Theologically, Puritanism is rooted in Calvinism, and the determinism of Calvinistic predestination was anathema to Chesterton. But at issue here is another aspect of Puritanism, namely the temptation of Puritans, then and now, to promote—and enforce—prohibitions.

Oh well, you say, those prohibition-minded Puritans are long gone. Not so, countered Chesterton, who could point to the brief success of the movement to prohibit the sale of alcohol in America.

https://www.intellectualtakeout.org/article/why-chesterton-despised-thanksgiving-day/

By Chuck Chalberg

Did you know that England also has a Thanksgiving Day?  Well, actually it doesn’t. But G. K. Chesterton did propose such a day for his England. And therein lies a tale, or at least a few thoughts for a Thanksgiving Day conversation. 

Chesterton’s thoughts on thanksgiving with a small “t” are not at issue here. But they are important. He thought that a sense of gratitude was crucial for human happiness. For him, that sense should begin with thanks for this world and one’s very existence in it. Even in his darkest days, days of unbelief that were touched with thoughts of suicide, Chesterton always held on to some sense of belief—and his life—by “one thin thread of thanks.”

But his thoughts about an official Thanksgiving Day for England were more directly tied to the origins of the first thanksgiving feast in the New World and its perpetrators, the American Puritans. 

Chesterton, to put it mildly, was not a fan of Puritanism in any of its guises. Theologically, Puritanism is rooted in Calvinism, and the determinism of Calvinistic predestination was anathema to Chesterton. But at issue here is another aspect of Puritanism, namely the temptation of Puritans, then and now, to promote—and enforce—prohibitions.

Oh well, you say, those prohibition-minded Puritans are long gone. Not so, countered Chesterton, who could point to the brief success of the movement to prohibit the sale of alcohol in America.

Oh well, you respond, that foray into prohibitionism has been thoroughly discredited and is now nearly a century behind us. Maybe so. But during the heyday of the 18th amendment Chesterton was on hand to point to the follies—and dangers—of the prohibitionist mind set. He was also on hand to ask us to remember to thank God for “beer and burgundy by not drinking too much of them.”

Today Chesterton’s words remain on hand to remind us that there are links between the Puritan mind of the 17th century and what he has termed the “Modern Mind.” It is a cast of mind that still “cries aloud with a voice of thunder” that there are always things that must be “forbidden.”

This cry could come from prohibitionists declaring that “there must be no wine.” Or it could come from pacifists who insist that “there must be no war.” Or from communists who stipulate that “there must be no private property.” Or from the “secularist” who decrees that “there must be no religious worship.”

All of these prohibitionists, and more besides, remain determined to ride roughshod over Chesterton’s “ordinary man.” That would be the “ordinary man” who had a right to live—and order—his own life as he saw fit. Those rights included the right to “judge about his own health,” the right to “bring up children to the best of his ability,” and the right to “rule other animals within reason” among many other ordinary rights.

In sum, G. K. Chesterton was far from convinced that Puritanism was dead and gone. In fact, it was all too alive in the “Modern Mind.” That was the mind that could not accept what Chesterton regarded as the “Catholic doctrine that human life is a battle.” More often than not, these are the battles that one fights with oneself, which is to say battles that should be fought without benefit of official—and officious—prohibitions.

Having come to the United States twice while the 18th amendment held legal sway, Chesterton experienced a direct encounter with this version of prohibitionism. Teetotaler that he wasn’t, G. K. Chesterton had reason to object to the powers of prohibitionist thinking over the modern American mind (even if he occasionally benefited from home brew in professors’ homes while lecturing at Notre Dame in the fall of 1930).

When back home in England, Chesterton’s objections gave way to thanks. That would be thankfulness that his country had not taken a similar step. In fact, it was this very sense of thankfulness that led him to propose a Thanksgiving Day for England. It would be a day to “celebrate the departure of those dour Puritans, the Pilgrim fathers.” Once here, they gave thanks and feasted (probably without beer or burgundy).

But if Chesterton is right, they also left their mark on America and the modern American mind, a mark that had lingered here long after their departure not just from England, but from this world.

Dear Readers,

Big Tech is suppressing our reach, refusing to let us advertise and squelching our ability to serve up a steady diet of truth and ideas. Help us fight back by becoming a member for just $5 a month and then join the discussion on Parler @CharlemagneInstitute!

Chuck Chalberg

Dr. John C. “Chuck” Chalberg writes from Bloomington, Minnesota.

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Playbook for World Domination – LewRockwell

Posted by M. C. on November 30, 2020

https://www.lewrockwell.com/2020/11/ellen-finnigan/playbook-for-world-domination/

By Ellen Finnigan

Do you have more money than you know what to do with? Do you have big dreams and connections in high places? Do I have a plan for you!

Getting Started

  • First, make a plan. World domination isn’t just going to fall into your lap. Read old school case studies like The Project for a New American Century and from more recently, the World Economic Forum’s Great Reset, the WHO’s Agenda 2030, ID2020 and UN Agenda 2030.
  • Create a crisis. It must be a “catastrophic and catalyzing event.” It will be easier to implement your plan in the chaos that follows. WINE BOTTLE GLASSES – … Buy New $25.99 (as of 04:43 EST – Details)
  • Fear is your friend. Paralyze them with fear. They’ll go along with anything.
  • The crisis should have mysterious foreign origins. Cave-dwelling terrorists in Afghanistan, cave-dwelling bats in Wuhan. For some reason, caves work, maybe something about their primitive connotations. Plus, it’s not like journalists are going to investigate something that happened in some God-forsaken foreign nation when they can earn a paycheck by “reporting” on what happened last night on Twitter from the comfort of their own beds.
  • But the place can’t be totally random. You’re going to need some connections in high places. Remember, Bush’s connections with Saudi Arabia, the CIA with Osama Bin Laden, Bill Gates with China, and Anthony Fauci with that Wuhan lab?
  • Psychologically prepare the population. This is most easily accomplished by making movies for the plebes. See Pearl Harbor (May 2001) and Pandemic (January 2020).
  • You need an “invisible enemythat “knows no borders,” one that is impossible to definitively eradicate. But don’t use terrorists or a virus again. That’s played out. You’ll have to come up with something bigger and better next time. Aliens might be cool.
  • Make the epicenter the Big Apple, because those folks are generally on our side and always easy to work with. Also, take a cue from Hollywood: Godzilla didn’t invade Charleston, and I Am Legend doesn’t take place in Helena. There is a reason for this.
  • Go big or go home. Is it likely that commercial airliners would manage to fly through some the most heavily defended airspace in the world and hit two buildings, 18 minutes apart, and the Pentagon? No — LOL! Is it likely that a virus would manage to escape one of the most highly secured and secretive labs in the entire world? Probably not. But the good news is: You don’t have to worry about what is likely or probable or believable. Just concern yourself with what is plausibly deniable and go from there. Seriously, the bigger the lie, the easier it is to believe, because they won’t be able to believe that someone would tell a lie that big. It’s all about chutzpah!
  • Plant a few seeds or make sure there is some precedent for the incredulous, like this and this.
  • Practice makes perfect! We recommend running some simulations, like the Pentagon Mass Casualty Project or the September 11 NORAD drills or Event 201. They can be good for cover or confusion or just for looking like you are trying to prepare for a crisis instead of planning one.

D-Day

Now that you’re ready, you can trigger your “catastrophic and catalyzing” event. (D-Day stands for “Demo Day,” by the way. Ha ha.) Dragonfly Embossed Cob… Buy New $26.00 (as of 04:43 EST – Details)

  • Surprise, surprise. Condoleeza Rice and President Bush both said that no one could have imagined terrorists using planes as missiles! (Though the military had imagined and prepared for this very thing.) And even though the Wuhan lab had 1,500 viruses in its stockpile, the virus that caused the plandemic was of course totally unknown to mankind, like nobody knew how it worked and stuff. This is important, like whatever happens needs to seem to come out of nowhere.
  • Instantly associate your new crisis with an iconic old one, but don’t recreate the wheel. Humans have short memories. “Pearl Harbor” usually works. See The Boston Globe in September 2001, and The Boston Globe again in April 2020.
  • Provide instant answers and verbalize the plan immediately. By the afternoon of September 11, 2001, Osama Bin Laden’s face was plastered all over the television screen, and people were calling for war (the plan) shortly thereafter. With the virus, it was important to tell people immediately what it was, where it came from, and that there would be no hope in combatting it without a vaccine (the plan), right away. First impressions are important. After that, humans will for some reason just, like, go with it.

Messaging

  • Re-traumatize through repetition. In 2001, television stations broadcasted the images of the towers collapsing over and over again for months. In 2020, no one could escape the daily reports on “cases.” Repetition is key. Don’t worry: We’ve laid the groundwork for you here. The media will dutifully repeat whatever you tell them, and then the humans will, in turn, repeat whatever they hear from the media. We didn’t call it “Operation Mockingbird” for nothing!
  • Make up slogans. Let’s roll! Never forget. Never again. These colors don’t run. Flatten the curve. Stay safe. Socially distance. Shelter in place. #wearadamnmask. You know, dumb crap like that.
  • You need some branding, something catchy to get people on board, something like “The War on Terror” or “The Great Reset.”
  • Promote unity. If someone questioned the events of September 11th he was deemed “unpatriotic.” If he questioned the narrative of COVID-1984, he was surely a sociopath! Next time, if shame doesn’t work, send them to a “re-education camp” or just start killing people, ideally in public.
  • The all-seeing eye. After September 11: “If you see something, say something” and “Report suspicious activity.” After the virus, people started snitching on their neighbors who were having a birthday party or playing football in the park.
  • Allow virtue signaling. Give people a way to show their buy-in, like by wearing an American flag on their lapel or donning a face diaper. Just make sure it’s easy, because people will do anything to seem like a good person, but not if it’s hard.
  • Tell them everything has changed. Use terms like “post-9/11” and the “New Normal.” The crisis must be characterized as a watershed event that will forever change the way they live (key word being “they”… ha ha.)
  • Never look back. Discourage reflection and “how did we get here” conversations, like about “blowback” or the ethics of engaging in biological warfare research or the pervasive problem of generally weakened immune systems from nutrition-less, GMO foods. People should only look forward (to the war/vaccine), never back. Pint Glasses by Black … Buy New $28.00 (as of 04:43 EST – Details)
  • Combat dissent. For anyone who 1) points out the published agendas in written documents, 2) speaks about large gatherings of powerful elites like Davos Group, Council on Foreign Relations, Bilderberg Group, etc., 3) dares to speak aloud the names of conspirators or the organizations they fund and associate with, 3) questions the origins of the crisis, or 4) urges prudence instead of haste, 5) calls attention to the downsides of the plan, 6) questions the plan in anyway, censor them, call them “conspiracy theorists” or say that they want to “do nothing” in a time of crisis.

Moving towards implementation, you must create the right environment.

  • The threat must be ongoing. After September 11, they used an ever-changing, color-coded warning system. After the virus, they did this too. In both cases there were constant reports of “break-outs” and predictions of a second wave, and ongoing “scientific discoveries” like: “It causes brain damage!” or “It causes infertility!” or “People who walk their dogs are 78% more likely to get the virus!”
  • Create logical chaos. For a thinking person, there is nothing so maddening. For example, in 2001, people were told that the fires from jet fuel were so hot that they could cause steel structures to collapse and disintegrate into dust, yet one of the terrorists’ passports was supposedly found lying on the ground. People were told the terrorists were in Afghanistan but “we” needed to invade Iraq. People were told the virus could live on surfaces for up to two weeks, but then it couldn’t. It wasn’t necessary to wear a mask, but then it was. Asymptomatic people could transmit the virus, then only pre-symptomatic people could. The virus could spread at anti-lockdown protests but not at BLM protests. This kind of thing will drive thinking people crazy. Good. That’s what you want.
  • Create social chaos. Thinking people will spend hours, years, decades, trying to figure out the truth, sharing the latest information, and then arguing, especially on social media, about what is true and what is not. Keep them arguing over the truth of what really happened while you implement the plan.
  • Ignore, play down protests and it will be like they didn’t happen. Most people had no idea of the extent of the protests against the invasion of Iraq, or about the extent of the protests against the lockdowns. So when the plan proceeded unimpeded, it didn’t strike many as being against the will of the people.
  • Make people feel physically insecure and unsafe. After September 11, they unleashed the Anthrax scare. After the virus, they funded the BLM and Antifa riots, started race wars, and worked toward color revolution. While Rome is burning, you will be calmly implementing your plan.

As you implement the plan:

  • Manufacture evidence. The intelligence agencies were pressured to “find” the evidence that would support the plan to invade Iraq; just like hospitals and doctors were bribed or pressured to report the cause of deaths as COVID-1984.
  • Dismiss family ties as conspiracy theory. George W. Bush was the son of Herbert Walker Bush, former President and head of the CIA (who didn’t remember where he was the day Kennedy died), had waged a previous war against Saddam Hussein, and had publicly called for a “new world order,” yet the “War on Terror” could have nothing to do with any of that. Bill Gates came from a family of eugenicists, engaged in dishonest business practices his whole life, and publicly called for population reduction and control, but this vaccine could have nothing to do with any of that. Glassware Set of 4 Bir… Buy New $49.95 (as of 04:43 EST – Details)
  • Move at warp speed. The post-September 11 cries that we must “Do something!” fueled the rush to war. The panic over the virus fueled “Operation Warp Speed,” the push for a vaccine. The wreckage at the World Trade Center was carted off and sold to China before anyone could blink. Likewise, there was no time to investigate Gates’ and Fauci’s ties to the Wuhan lab, how the virus escaped, whether the virus was manmade, the fraudulent testing and reporting, and certainly no time to for the necessary trials to test the vaccine before it went to market.
  • Mission creep: Just like the need to bomb the caves in Afghanistan where the terrorists supposedly dwelled led to the invasion for Iraq, and then the occupation of both countries for decades, so “fourteen days to flatten the curve” led to six months of “lockdown” and economic devastation and, then, the need to stop climate change, to move to digital currency, to usher in the fourth industrial revolution and trans-humanism.
  • Get the Catholic Church on your side. One way to do this might be to have a major paper publish drop a perfectly timed bombshell that exposes the largest sex scandal in history, thereby discrediting them, embroiling them in controversy, and preoccupying them with lawsuits for the foreseeable future so they can’t, or won’t, speak out against war. If you can’t do that, buy their silence with millions of dollars. Like the folks in NYC, the people at the top of the USCCB have proven historically very easy to work with: They didn’t bring up Just War Theory when the U.S. government invaded Iraq, and they didn’t bring up fetal tissue from aborted babies when they pushed the vaccine.

Now is the time for a power grab. Just like everything and anything could be justified in the name of national security after September 11, 2001, everything and anything could be justified in the name of public health in the wake of COVID-1984, including the following:

  • Increase surveillance and trampling of civil rights: There was the Patriot Act in the wake of September 11th and “contact tracing” in the wake of the virus.
  • Install new government busybodies: Like the TSA, then contact tracers.
  • Censor! Silence anyone who criticizes or questions the government’s narrative, even those – especially those — who are well qualified in related fields, such as doctors, immunologists, structural engineers, and architects. Refer to all as “conspiracy theorists” and put them all on a media blacklist.
  • Rake in obscene profits. The military-industrial complex on the one hand, BigPharma and the Davos billionaires on the other. Luckily these two massive industries eventually blended, with DARPA and the Department of Defense involved in the developing and deploying of the vaccine. With Big Military, Big Tech, and Big Pharma all blending, things things are getting harder for people to sort out. That’s good!

Psy-ops are necessary to psychologically condition the population for your long term plan.

See the rest here

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Erie Times E-Edition Article-Why forgiving student debt is a bad idea

Posted by M. C. on November 30, 2020

About once a year Jonah comes up with a winner. Of course he neglected to mention one of the main causes for increased debt. Increased tuition due to to easy Fed loan money. Easy money lets schools jack prices and pay for ever increasing admin positions, safe rooms and worthless (no real world job possibilities except teaching it again) PC approved majors.

https://erietimes-pa-app.newsmemory.com/?publink=20d7666bc

One good rule of thumb is to judge parties and politicians by their priorities. Politicians often pretend to be for every good thing under the sun, so the best way to judge them is to look at which things they actually work to achieve or spend political capital on. This will tell you not only what they’re really for, but which constituents they really care about.

By that metric, it will be very revealing if one of Joe Biden’s first actions as president will be to forgive student debt.

That’s an idea swirling around Democratic circles — particularly among the progressive base, which is worried that Biden might actually mean all that centrist and moderate stuff he said during the campaign. The base turned out for Biden, and now they want their pay-off — literally so, in the case of massive debt forgiveness.

Last week, a coalition of 236 progressive groups led by teachers unions called on Biden to cancel student debt on his first days at the office. Biden himself has already urged Congress to cancel $10,000 as part of a pandemic relief package.

Senators Bernie Sanders and Elizabeth Warren have called for even greater debt forgiveness. Sanders’ plan would cost an estimated $1.6 trillion dollars.

I think it’s a bad policy, and bad politics.

Let’s start with the policy: As economists on the left and right will tell you, the economic cratering caused by the pandemic is not like a typical recession. In normal times, bailing out failing businesses is a bad idea because, among other things, it creates what economists call “moral hazard” — incentivizing bad decisions people make when they think someone else (i.e. taxpayers) will pick up the tab.

A restaurant that was profitable before COVID-19 hit did nothing wrong. Trying to keep such businesses, and their employees afloat during the pandemic, which Washington did on a bipartisan basis, was a good idea.

Proponents of loan forgiveness are claiming this is just like that. Well, before the pandemic no one was calling for a mass bailout of small businesses, but lots of progressives were calling for student debt cancellation. In other words, they think the pandemic is a crisis that shouldn’t go to waste.

That doesn’t automatically mean they’re wrong, but it doesn’t make them right either. Student loan forgiveness, even according to formulae that exclude the very well-off, has very few broader economic benefits. As Jason Furman (Barack Obama’s chair for the Council of Economic Advisors) notes, debt forgiveness would be taxable — which would cut into any stimulative effect on the economy.

Think about it this way: If you only have $1.5 trillion to spend, what policy would help the most people actually struggling right now? I don’t think cancelling student loans would rank in the top 20.

Which brings me to the politics. Most Americans, especially most poor Americans, don’t have student debt, because most of them didn’t go to college in the first place. Moreover, most people who did go to college have no or very little student debt.

According to the liberalleaning Brookings Institution, roughly 30% of undergrads have none.

Another 25% have up to $20,000 in loans. Despite what you may have heard about the student debt crisis, only 6% of borrowers owe more than $100,000. Virtually all of them borrowed so much because they attended graduate school.

You can argue that people who choose to get graduate degrees — including many young doctors, lawyers and engineers in training — deserve relief. But do they deserve help more than truck drivers, mechanics or short-order cooks?

Heck, do they deserve relief more than the doctors, lawyers and engineers who chose to pay off their loans?

One reason teachers unions — a huge source of donations and political organizing for the Democratic Party — want loan forgiveness is that teachers and administrators can boost their pay by going back to school to get advanced degrees. Other municipal and federal workers — another major constituency for Democrats — have similar rules.

Whether or not you think that’s a good overall policy (I don’t), using the pandemic as an excuse to reward workers who are far less likely to lose their jobs and more likely to find new employment if they do, seems awfully self-serving.

The popularity of this idea stems from the fact that the Democratic Party has increasingly become the party of educated professionals, as the GOP has become more working-class. Lots of poor people are still Democrats, but they aren’t a major source of power within the party — the bureaucrats claiming to speak for them are. And that’s who Democrats are prioritizing.

Jonah Goldberg is editorin- chief of The Dispatch and the host of The Remnant podcast. His Twitter handle is @JonahDispatch.

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The Libertarian Party Will Never Have Political Power | The Libertarian Institute

Posted by M. C. on November 28, 2020

The purpose of politics is to seize power and centralize it to your party. The Left knows how to do this even when they aren’t in power and the Right fails even when they hold all the cards. As Curtis Yarvin puts it

https://libertarianinstitute.org/libertarianism/the-libertarian-party-will-never-have-political-power/

by Peter R. Quinones

Just give it up already. Those who are holding onto the dream that the LP will be able to wield any significant political, or cultural power have not thought this through. An ideology of non-aggression and voluntary interactions has no place in the political sphere unless they are willing to become like the other two parties. Their message is that we are not like them. It is one of incompatibility when it comes to Machiavellian power structures.

The purpose of politics is to seize power and centralize it to your party. The Left knows how to do this even when they aren’t in power and the Right fails even when they hold all the cards. As Curtis Yarvin puts it,

“Progressives see power as an end; conservatives see power as a means to an end. As soon as conservatives get even a sliver of power, they start trying to use this power to create good outcomes. This is irrational.

The rational way to use power is the progressive way: to make more power. Your power grows exponentially. Eventually you have all the power, and can get all the outcomes you want.

There is not one progressive idea which does not yield a power dividend. I cannot think of a conservative idea that does. If one did, the progressives would steal it. Then the conservatives would persuade themselves to oppose it, and all would be well.”

Anyone paying attention knows this. In our lifetimes the Left has grown their power – especially over the culture – to an insurmountable level. The Right has become what the Left was 25 years ago, and they always play catch-up. I hear echoes of Michael Malice saying, “Conservatism is Progressive driving the speed limit.”

What does this all mean for the Libertarian Party? It should be obvious. What is described above IS politics. It is the dirtiest, slimiest, most reprehensible way of gaining power over mankind. To argue against that is to be naive beyond measure. An ideology promoting the Non-Aggression Principle entering into the American political realm is like a kindergartener entering a UFC match. The outcome is inevitable.

And don’t think I’m just talking about the 202-area code. No, local politics is just as bad. If you’re walking in there as “the good guy” the inevitable “bad guy” will rear their head and take you out. And if you’re a Libertarian and you are “consistent” in your ideology, you won’t fight dirty because once you do you are out of the realm of libertarianism. You’ve just became “The Swamp” (even the local Swamp).

Once you understand this you realize that the old argument about whether the purpose of the Libertarian Party is one of “education” or “getting people elected” to institute political change is easily answered. You are a party of education. And one that will always be a joke in the eyes of those who understand the Machiavellian nature of politics. But is education even possible if you won’t do what it takes politically to even get on a debate stage ignoring the inability to centralize all power to you if you do get elected?

Maybe there are better ways to spend your time rather than tilting at windmills.

About Peter R. Quinones

Peter R. Quinones is managing editor of the Libertarian Institute and hosts the Free Man Beyond the Wall podcast. He released his first book, Freedom Through Memedom – The 31-day Guide to Waking Up to Liberty in November 2017. It reached #4 in the Libertarian Section on Amazon. He has spoken at Liberty Forum in Manchester, New Hampshire and is one of the Executive Producers on the documentary, “The Monopoly on Violence.” Contact him at pete@libertarianinstitute.org

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EconomicPolicyJournal.com: This is the Most Alarming Thing I Have Read About the Likely Biden Administration

Posted by M. C. on November 28, 2020

https://www.economicpolicyjournal.com/2020/11/this-is-most-alarming-thing-i-have-read.html

Joe Cirincione, who identifies himself as a “Hill Rat,” teaches at Georgetown and is a member of the Council on Foreign Relations, has sent this tweet out:

In his remarks, Jake Sullivan says @JoeBiden tasked them to “reimagine national security” to include “the pandemic, the economic crisis, the climate crisis, technological disruptions, threats to democracy, racial injustice and inequality in all forms.” 💯— Joe Cirincione (@Cirincione) November 24, 2020

This is the “Great Reset” combined with social justice warrior madness.

It is all part of the crony globalist attempt to gain control of the world and turn everyone, except for insiders, into serfs.

This is extremely alarming. If a battle needs to be launched, it is against this. –RW

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Critical race theory: a ruling-class ideology – spiked

Posted by M. C. on November 28, 2020

But whereas a previous generation of anti-racists challenged the social significance attributed to biological differences to argue that there was one race, the human race, and emphasised universal traits that create a common humanity irrespective of skin colour, critical race theorists argue that, once constructed, race becomes an incontestable fact. As Robin Di Angelo explains in White Fragility: ‘While there is no biological race as we understand it, race as a social construct has profound significance and shapes every aspect of our lives.’ (1)

https://www.spiked-online.com/2020/11/27/critical-race-theory-a-ruling-class-ideology/

Joanna Williams

Joanna Williams
Columnist

2020 has been shaped by two things. Coronavirus – and our response to it – has dominated every aspect of our lives. But something else has gripped us this year, too: anti-racism. In May, shocked by the killing of George Floyd at the hands of a Minneapolis police officer, people all around the world emerged from lockdown to participate in Black Lives Matter (BLM) protests. In the UK, statues fell, public figures knelt in solidarity and many people blacked out their social-media posts for a day. Schools, universities and workplaces stepped up diversity training and anti-racist initiatives.

There have been protests against racism in the past, of course. But this year has been different. Never before have people on every continent, in countries and towns facing their own unique problems, turned out in such huge numbers to support the same cause. Never before have books like White Fragility, Why I’m No Longer Talking To White People About Race and How To Be An Antiracist become international bestsellers. And never before has a protest movement had such establishment backing. In the UK, BLM has been publicly endorsed by the royal family, the football Premier League, and senior politicians. Multinational corporations have got in on the act, too. Ice-cream maker Ben and Jerry’s has pledged to do all it can to dismantle white supremacy, while elite universities have issued statements denouncing their own institutional racism.

The mainstreaming and elite-backing of anti-racism initiatives speaks to a new understanding of racism. Critical race theory (CRT) used to be a minority pursuit, an obscure academic interest. In 2020 it provided the rationale for protests, books, diversity workshops and school lessons. In June, Channel 4 screened The School That Tried to End Racism, a documentary series that followed the progress of children made to undergo an anti-racist re-education programme based upon principles of CRT. New phrases entered our vocabulary. Terms like systemic racism, unconscious bias, white privilege, cultural appropriation, reparations, microaggression and intersectionality migrated from academics and activists to newspapers, radio discussions, charity campaigns and school lessons. President Trump and Kemi Badenoch, the UK’s minister for equalities, made speeches explicitly naming CRT and calling out its perniciousness.

What is Critical Race Theory?

CRT begins with a challenge to the ‘scientific’ racism of the 19th and early 20th century. In the days of empire, colonial exploitation and slavery were justified by a belief that white people were physically, mentally and morally superior to the people they ruled over. This view extended to the working class at home, who were portrayed as genetically distinct from and inferior to the upper class. This biological understanding of race began to be called into question after the Second World War, although its legacy continued to play out in Apartheid-era South Africa, Jim Crow laws in the American South and discrimination in the UK.

Critical race theorists are not the first to point out that race is socially constructed; that is, it is not a naturally occurring phenomenon but created and made meaningful by people collectively, over time and place. Few today disagree with this point. But whereas a previous generation of anti-racists challenged the social significance attributed to biological differences to argue that there was one race, the human race, and emphasised universal traits that create a common humanity irrespective of skin colour, critical race theorists argue that, once constructed, race becomes an incontestable fact. As Robin Di Angelo explains in White Fragility: ‘While there is no biological race as we understand it, race as a social construct has profound significance and shapes every aspect of our lives.’ (1)

Protesters hold placards in Parliament Square during a demonstration on 20 June 2020 in London.

Protesters hold placards in Parliament Square during a demonstration on 20 June 2020 in London.

When race is seen in this way, racism is understood as systemic; that is, built into the very fabric of societies designed by white people, for the benefit of white people. Proponents of CRT argue that ideas of white superiority and black inferiority are intrinsic to our language, culture and interpretations of history. Every aspect of our daily lives, from education, policing, the health service and employment assumes a white norm, they argue, and this makes a mockery of equality before the law and the liberal notion of equality of opportunity. As Reni Eddo-Lodge explains in Why I’m No Longer Talking to White People About Race: ‘If you’re white, your race will almost certainly positively impact your life’s trajectory in some way. And you probably won’t even notice it.’ In an inescapably circular argument, race is constructed and made meaningful through racism; it is people’s everyday experiences within a racist society that create the reality of race.

The Origins of Critical Race Theory

CRT is newly fashionable and highly influential, but it has a long and complex history. Its origins can be traced back to a divide within the US civil-rights movement. Free speech, democracy and legal equality were initially considered integral to the fight for civil rights, but by the end of the 1960s, with progress appearing to have stalled and both racism and poverty still major problems, groups within the movement began to question the efficacy of these principles. Many arrived at the conclusion that legal equality not only left social inequality intact but actually provided the context and justification for its continuation. As the authors of Words That Wound, a key CRT text published in 1993, point out:

‘It became apparent to many who were active in the civil-rights movement that dominant conceptions of race, racism, and equality were increasingly incapable of providing any meaningful quantum of racial justice.’

Having come up against the limits of formal, legal equality, the question facing the civil-rights movement at this point was how best to achieve social equality. As Helen Pluckrose and James A Lindsay point out in Cynical Theories, more materialist activists focused on housing, schooling, employment and income. For some, this led to championing black nationalism and segregation over universal human rights. At the same time, some began to find a home within academia where, to quote Words that wound:

‘individual law teachers and students committed to racial justice began to meet, to talk, to write, and to engage in political action in an effort to confront and oppose dominant societal and institutional forces that maintained the structures of racism while professing the goal of dismantling racial discrimination.’

These academic activists argued that ‘majoritarian self-interest’ was ‘a critical factor in the ebb and flow of civil-rights doctrine’; in other words, a white-majority society would be unlikely to cede its power voluntarily (1). A key text to come out of this period was by Derrick Bell, Harvard’s first African American professor. In Race, Racism and American Law, published in 1970, Bell argued that white people only concede rights when it is in their interests to do so. By 1987, his views had crystalised further and he was able to explain that, ‘progress in American race relations is largely a mirage obscuring the fact that whites continue, consciously or unconsciously, to do all in their power to ensure their dominion and maintain their control’.

Black scholars found common cause with professors engaged in critical legal studies who sought to formulate a radical left-wing critique of dominant liberal approaches to the law. Together, they drew from ‘liberalism, Marxism, the law-and-society movement, critical legal studies, feminism, poststructuralism/postmodernism, and neopragmatism’. A key aim was to examine ‘the relationships between naming and reality, knowledge and power’ (2). This marked a splintering from the materialists and a distinct turn towards subjectivity. It led to racism being understood not just as legal and economic inequalities, but as social, cultural and psychological practices. At this point, as Matsuda et al tell us, ‘Scholars of colour within the left began to ask their white colleagues to examine their own racism and to develop oppositional critiques not just to dominant conceptions of race and racism but to the treatment of race within the left as well’. Their conclusions presented racism, ‘not as isolated instances of conscious bigoted decision-making or prejudiced practice, but as larger, systemic, structural, and cultural, as deeply psychologically and socially ingrained’ (3).

In 1981, Kimberlé Crenshaw, then a student of Derrick Bell’s, led a protest against Harvard Law School when it refused to hire a black professor to teach Race, Racism and American Law following Bell’s departure. Crenshaw, along with others, invited leading academics and practitioners of colour to lecture on a course aimed at ‘developing a full account of the legal construction of race and racism’. Bringing people together in this joint intellectual project crystalised the ideas underpinning critical race theory. By the end of the 1980s, Crenshaw’s work led her to devise a framework she labelled ‘intersectionality’ to describe how multiple features of a person’s identity can combine to create different modes of discrimination and privilege. Her 1991 essay, Mapping the Margins: Intersectionality, Identity Politics and Violence Against Women of Colour, has been especially influential.

Protesters gather near the White House, 22 June 2020 in Washington, DC.

Protesters gather near the White House, 22 June 2020 in Washington, DC.

Pluckrose and Lindsay point out that the concerns of materialists dominated the critical race movement from the 1970s to the 1980s. However, by the 1990s, a more identity-focused and postmodern understanding of CRT, driven primarily by radical black feminists such as Crenshaw, Audre Lorde, bell hooks, Patricia Hill Collins and Angela Harris, was becoming increasingly popular. Today, CRT is mainstream and terms like ‘structural racism’ now refer to structures of thought far more than any structural, material analysis of society. Activists have taken the subjective, identitarian and psychological understanding of racism developed within universities and transformed it into a list of commandments all must obey.

Joanna Williams is currently researching hate crime in her role as director of the Freedom, Democracy and Victimhood Project at the think tank, Civitas.

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How is an American Left Still Possible? Four Theses – Letters from Flyover Country

Posted by M. C. on November 28, 2020

Opposition to any given Leftist policy constitutes a threat to their dual cosmologies, that must always be kept in harmony:(a) the inner, mental egalitarian fiction that we are all equal despite overwhelming evidence of the senses and the conduct of Nature and (b) the outer, environmental fiction that Nature, far from being indifferent, is actually taking sides. Stranded dolphins, for instance, somehow become a symbolic demonstration of Earth’s revulsion with Donald Trump’s coiffure

https://lettersfromflyovercountry.com/how-is-an-american-left-still-possible-four-theses-782/

by L. Q. Cincinnatus

“… the methods of thinking that are living activities in men are not objects of reflective consciousness.” — Charles S. Peirce (1892)

The history of the modern physical sciences in the twentieth century is strewn with instances of discipline-shattering “thought experiments.” Perhaps the most famous is Einstein’s 1919 prediction of a solar eclipse proving his theory that light is bent by gravity. It was so dazzling that it cemented his Nobel Prize in Physics in 1921.

Such exercises reveal that the human mind can so fit itself to empirical reality that remote events may be understood with pinpoint, and even life-saving, accuracy. My favorite example of the pyrotechnic splendor of inductive inference was how NASA scientists predicted, to the very second, when a radio signal would reach the Apollo 8 command module upon emerging from the first orbit of the moon on the morning of December 24, 1968. No proof for this event existed; it had to be logically inferred from the laws of wave propagation.

So, my question is: can you call to mind even one remotely comparable mental experiment from the so-called social sciences? I would venture that most people can’t, and for the very good reason that inductive reasoning is simply the wrong logic tool to use in matters of human behavior. While this is not the place to explore the methodological differences between the physical and the social sciences, the idea that society and human behavior can be conceived as operating under the same laws as Brownian motion or Bernoullian distribution is—or should be—laughable on its face. More on this in a moment.

I would argue that Ludwig von Mises’ 1920 analysis of economic calculation is one of the great, unsung thought experiments in modern science, but because it was conducted as an exercise in deductive, as opposed to inductive, reasoning that it is either wholly ignored or, more likely, not understood.

Through a series of strict deductive inferences anchored in the primary “given” of socialism—the absence of private property—Mises demonstrated that a functioning price system would never emerge, and, as a result, no method of rationally calculating the relative scarcity or necessity for higher order goods of any kind could be used to sustain an economy. Mises stated flatly that a socialist economy was was not merely a contradiction in terms, but impossible (unmöglich).

His analysis was immediately seized upon by socialist theoreticians and planners and the history of its reception, both in the free world and in the countries behind the former Iron Curtain, makes for fascinating reading. In the final analysis, of course, Mises was proven right. Resoundingly so. Because  in 1920, before Lenin had even consolidated power, Mises had already foretold the fate of the Soviet Union. And it would take another seventy years and scores of millions of human corpses for him to finally be vindicated.

And not only was Mises right about the practical matters of socialist planning—about where shoe laces were needed most and how cotton could be sourced and delivered to mills where such laces were to be woven and produced—he was also right about epistemological matters. It is impossible for one mind to command the distributed knowledge of millions of decision-makers conducting and executing valuations in real time in markets that fluidly and without explicit command from a central authority, redirect capital, goods, and labor to match consumer demand. This “knowledge problem” became a centerpiece in the work of his protégé, Friedrich von Hayek, and was rolled out in exquisite detail when he stood to receive his 1974 Nobel Prize in Economic Science.

The central point is that: (1) for fully a century the logical proof of the impossibility of socialism has been known and accepted as the central, indeed fatal, flaw in the socialist project, and (2) that with the fall of the Soviet Union, to say nothing of the real-time, parallel path experiment provided by East and West Germany across four decades, the logical proof was borne out empirically, in social and behavioral form, and in real time.

Even socialist economist Robert Heilbronner had to fess up in 1989 declaring, “Mises was right.” So, with the awareness that one can deduce axiomatically the conditions that produce human poverty, misery, and state-sponsored genocide of its own populace (“democide”), how is it even remotely possible that there can be an active political movement, comprised of millions of people, who seek to reenact the most destructive political and economic experience in human history?

And even more to the point, since the statistical analyses put forth in The Black Book of Communism (1999), to say nothing of the revelations of the Venona decrypts, what kind of human being can countenance the notion of reviving any of the ingredients of this kind of inhumane catastrophe for the reenactment of globally-scaled human misery for life in the twenty-first century?

In Misesian terms, how is the Left even possible?

I would like to lay out four theses that might be used to explain the residual existence of this suicidal theology, this system of faith whose believers are unable to value their own existence—physically, economically, and morally. In all honesty, I think we are looking at a situation where, given differences in age, experience, and cultural milieu, two or more strands are continually being braided together at all times. So while it is important to see various elements in play, the chances are high that there is always some “reverb” between each of these components of this mass political madness at work.

Our political culture was shaped and matured in historical conditions that knew nothing of deliberate cognitive infiltration as a political strategy; therefore, our task is to restore the principles which allowed that political culture so elegantly and effortlessly yield an explosion in life expectancy, quality of life, and per capita wealth—McCloskey’s “great enrichment.” We take this enrichment for granted, as do the enemies of human well-being. So, let’s take a deep breath and consider an array of explanations.

First Thesis: Romantic Ignorance. This is the easiest layer to grasp because it is  seen everywhere. Romantic ignorance as a pretext for “social action” is the adolescent response to the absence of a theological argument against state charity. The Judeo-Christian tradition, broadly speaking, addresses the development of conscience and character by demonstrating how direct acts of compassion, unmediated by coercion or compulsion by others, benefits both receiver and giver.

In the traditional model, charity flows from one’s empathic recognition of distress or injustice, and one engages with the subject or victim without institutional mediation. The moral merit of this scenario is that effort is made to correct the preconditions of the pathology, not merely the conditions. And these preconditions center on the human heart and are communicated non-verbally. Moreover, charity becomes contingent on recognition of the sacrifice involved in providing the relief but also in the correction of behaviors and the evidence of a change of direction and a change of heart. The Right, regardless of the the reflexive contempt of the Left, posits charity on the basis of an inward change; the Left, shallowly and materialistically, believes that redistribution is enough. You give the victim enough “stuff,” and his life will improve; that’s the Left’s answer for every imbalance, inequality, and difference. Fix the optics. I believe it was James Burnham who provided the most excoriating expose of piebald, left wing materialism ever penned.

We recognize the shame of genuine victimhood—just as one does its subjection—by tracking the visual signals of that inward change though outward expressions: dilated pupils, facial responses of recognition, and eventually specific behaviors and the emergence of pride and self-respect. This “soul change” is predicated on the acknowledgement of the existence of the soul which is anathema for all post-religious charity work. The Left, in its thrall with self and sensation, disregards the soul altogether, or sees it where it isn’t. 

The “romantic” dimension comes in the artful self-delusion that one’s efforts can “change the world.” It is horribly selfish (all about the giver), ego-centric (as if single acts can change another’s heart), and hubristic (the simplistic materialism of giving someone a fish to make them less hungry never ultimately works). But there is an enduring enchantment, a romantic delusion that “doing something” is preferable to “doing nothing,” and demanding that others comply with the objective is all part of the experience of collective enthusiasm. The late Murray Rothbard explained how the “romantic ignorance” of Progressivism had cultural roots in the Yankee post-millennial pietism of the Puritans; his belief was that seventeenth-century theological injunctions for the salvation of the individual soul had slowly morphed into a primary ingredient in the Progressive contagion of compulsive and unreflective do-gooder activism that emerged in the course of the post-Darwinian Protestantism of the late nineteenth century.

Irving Babbitt (1865-1933), one of the great humanist scholars of the Right who beheld the sweep of modern culture as as grand coarsening of the spirit, declaimed in his Rousseau and Romanticism that the Romantic impulse led to an unconstrained personality—that the normal inhibitions of the Classic temperament were deactivated by the Romantic germ, and one’s sense of self flowed like an omelette spreading evenly and thinly into the heated pan. Babbitt believed that the Romantic’s “merely aesthetic” consideration of social hypotheticals—scenarios of pity and sin, for instance—was capable of delivering emotional rewards and thus could serve as an unconscious green-light for the conscious contemplation, and ultimately acting out, of self-destructive behavior for aesthetic enjoyment. In his world Romantic impulse was a form of slow-motion suicide undertaken as a racily pleasurable form of aesthetic delectation. Of course with it comes an implicit refusal to contemplate the end-state of a chain of inferences that begins with soul death, and continues with an insensate separation of self from society and indeed from pain. This was all part of the allure of transgression that in revolutionary France saw the emergence of a de Sade and its fulfillment in a Fourier. Babbitt’s romantic was Wolfe’s radical chic in powdered wigs and silk pumps.

Second Thesis: Seeded Deception. The second thesis is a darker, indeed anti-romantic counterpoint to the first. Here, socialism as charity is tacitly accepted to be a failure in reality, but it is simply too good a ruse to ignore as a business model for creating public procurement schemes and related activities to reallocate assets in such a manner as to create cash streams that benefit the “organizers.” Of course, there will be anecdotal case studies describing in great detail and replete with emotional imagery explaining how the charity has immeasurable “human impact.” This is the marketing equivalent of the Madison Avenue huckster who shows you what you want while selling you what he has.

One might say that this is the central operative feature of the modern American educational career: selling socialist ideology as both a science and an aspiration. It is, of course, the career path that individuals who choose a career in “government service” buy into, including many in the military and even seemingly mundane work of the GSA or some other semi-submerged bureaucracy. It was originally called “service” because an educated person with professional training, as an attorney or physician for instance, could certainly command higher pay in the private sector. That is clearly not the case for millions. Indeed, average government wages have, since the Obama years, surpassed private sector remuneration in aggregate. And with this, not only is there no conception of the parasitical nature of this unnatural and anti-economic asymmetry, there is a kind of hubristic pride attached to it—as if one “does well by doing good.” The layers of delusion and economic nonsense are so tightly fused that now everyone is compelled to buy into the deception, quite literally, with every taxed transaction of your financial existence. Is it still abuse if the victim is not conscious of the crimes being perpetrated? 

This kind of seeded deception requires seed (the ideas of Marx), a sower (the educational systems), and intent (the public’s naive trust in the educational system). It may be hard to believe because it all seems so fresh—especially given the cratering of traditional educational standards of the 1980s that were still able to produce an occasional Republican voter—but the deliberate skewing of the educational system for both financial gain and cultural advantage has been underway in this country since the 1840s. I know, I know. You will wonder why, if this is the case, how it is that we didn’t become Sovietized before the Russians! I will describe it in greater detail at another time, but the case has been made in elaborate, forensic detail by the late John Taylor Gatto (1935-2018); it is one important chapter in the long and deep cultural history of the impact of “left-ish” forces since the Reformation that has been part and parcel of the modern Right’s critique prior to the emergence of William F. Buckley, Jr.’s “new” Right in the 1950s.

Ignorance of our own intellectual heritage is one of the intended byproducts of the seeded deception—with the advent of Reconstruction, “current events” evolved from being inert facts to being objects of deliberate propagandistic distortion in the classroom since the days of Teddy Roosevelt. The easiest case in point: every Boomer has been force-fed ideological gavage about the United Nations, probably, since grammar school. The fact that this organization’s objectives and personnel from our own country were dedicated to the victory of international communism is still actively denied by the professional Left. 

We will get as much deception as we tolerate.

Third Thesis: Affective Impairment. This is not a particularly new thought vector. Rossiter and Haidt have looked at the phenomenon of the psychological structure of the liberal Left from the point of view of personality development and the Big Five personality traits, respectively. To simplify, both see the “leftist mind,” if you will, as either not whole, not healthy, or both.

The most pristine example of the practical reality of a cognitive defect on the American Left is, paradoxically, completely understood by the political leadership of the American Left! The classic “Exhibit A” will always be Prof. Jonathan Gruber’s recorded statement that the entire pretext for the wording of Obamacare was, “the stupidity of the American voter.” More specifically, this is a tacit admission that those who were against the bill had correctly understood the fundamentally flawed, indeed criminal, deception involved. Gruber explains that the proponents of socialized “health care” could in fact rely on the intrinsic stupidity of Democrats. The implicit strategy was made explicit:  people who are routinely persuaded by intention alone and habitually ignore the labor of comparing factual and counterfactuals, to say nothing of performing a “gut check” on the potential significance of a bureaucratic shell game—these people could be relied on to miss the deliberate deception.

Indeed, the typical Democrat/Leftist is barely capable of reproducing the basic arguments in support of whatever cause is being marketed to them at any given time; just as certain is their inability to reproduce any rational argument against their cause. In lieu of argument and demonstrations, they rely on aesthetic heuristics—the conformity of an image with the tenets of their belief system. For instance, a taste for a certain stylistic alignment between one’s attire and one’s home furnishings is not a simple matter of “lifestyle preference.” Stylistic immersion and saturation in anti-human systems of form are a dead giveaway that the individual in question sees neither clothes nor dwelling as a fitted environment for the body, the family, and the community. Rather, these objects are seen as props on a stage, where one’s life becomes a platform for the communication of an ideological commitment that is intended to be read as “self expression.” More on the heuristic value of aesthetics below.

Opposition to any given Leftist policy constitutes a threat to their dual cosmologies, that must always be kept in harmony:(a) the inner, mental egalitarian fiction that we are all equal despite overwhelming evidence of the senses and the conduct of Nature and (b) the outer, environmental fiction that Nature, far from being indifferent, is actually taking sides. Stranded dolphins, for instance, somehow become a symbolic demonstration of Earth’s revulsion with Donald Trump’s coiffure. Instances of apophenia of this magnitude are no longer reserved for asylums for schizophrenics; this kind of thinking can be heard from Protestant pulpits, talk show hosts, and even nature programs. 

See the rest here

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Those Who Fear Disease Most Are Most Likely to Prefer Authoritarian Regimes | Mises Wire

Posted by M. C. on November 28, 2020

“Because many disease-causing parasites are invisible, and their actions mysterious, disease control has historically depended substantially on adherence to ritualized behavioral practices that reduced infection risk. Individuals who openly dissented from, or simply failed to conform to, these behavioral traditions, therefore, posed a health threat to self and others.” Unfortunately, as covid-19 has demonstrated, people are willing to subject themselves to rituals even if they have no discernible impact on deterring transmissions.

https://mises.org/wire/those-who-fear-disease-most-are-most-likely-prefer-authoritarian-regimes

Lipton Matthews

Covid-19 has unleashed a pandemic of restrictive measures on the population. Lockdowns and mask mandates are becoming widespread. Libertarians have been vociferously denouncing covid-19 containment strategies as draconian. Evolutionary psychologists, however, argue that reactions in favor of government restrictions are the norm in environments where the public fears contamination. According to the parasitic stress theory popularized by Randy Thornhill and Corey Fincher, societies with a high prevalence of diseases are more supportive of authoritarian policies. This is unsurprising because to prevent transmissions experts often recommend limiting movement. Due to fear, citizens would have a vested interest in promoting policies claiming to lower infections. Likewise, the aversion to contracting covid-19 has forced many to advocate hysterical policies. For anthropologists interested in analyzing the parasitic stress theory, covid-19 is a perfect case study.

Murray, Schaller, and Suedfeld (2013) in their discussion of the relationship between pathogens and authoritarianism elucidate the importance of disease control mechanisms in germ-rich societies. “Because many disease-causing parasites are invisible, and their actions mysterious, disease control has historically depended substantially on adherence to ritualized behavioral practices that reduced infection risk. Individuals who openly dissented from, or simply failed to conform to, these behavioral traditions, therefore, posed a health threat to self and others.” Unfortunately, as covid-19 has demonstrated, people are willing to subject themselves to rituals even if they have no discernible impact on deterring transmissions. One must appear to be complying with the crowd or face expulsion. Humans are emotional creatures, and hence they give primacy to symbolic gestures. For example, recently researchers noted that “no direct evidence indicates that public mask wearing protects either the wearer or others.” Yet despite the dearth of evidence in favor of wearing masks, the researchers nevertheless advocated their use in the name of group solidarity: “Given the severity of this pandemic and the difficulty of control…we suggest appealing to altruism and the need to protect others.”

Blind conformity to public opinion is also evident when analysts recommend mask mandates after admitting that they “may be far from enough to prevent an increase in new infections.” Although the evidence does not support containment measures such as mask mandates and lockdowns, they remain quite popular among the intelligentsia. However, this pattern is consistent with the parasitic stress theory. To some, the costs of tolerating dissent in an environment compatible with diseases are too onerous, so contrarians are usually viewed as a threat to society. Therefore, in the era of covid-19 ideas in opposition to the prevailing orthodoxy will be neutered.

For instance, writing in The Spiked Magazine, Fraser Myers exposes Google for censoring the Great Barrington Declaration:

The Great Barrington Declaration was spearheaded by Martin Kulldorff from Harvard Medical School, Sunetra Gupta from Oxford University and Jay Bhattacharya from Stanford University Medical School. The declaration was bound to cause controversy for going against the global political consensus, which holds that lockdowns are key to minimising mortality from Covid-19. Instead, the signatories argue that younger people, who face minimal risk from the virus, should be able to go about their lives unimpeded, while resources are devoted to protecting the most vulnerable. But for making this argument, the declaration has been censored. Tech giant Google has decided that the view of these scientists should be covered up. Most users in English-speaking countries, when they google ‘Great Barrington Declaration’, will not be directed to the declaration itself but to articles that are critical of the declaration—and some that amount to little more than smears of the signatories.

Moreover, numerous examples suggest that covid-19 is being leveraged as a justification for authoritarianism. Consider the insightful observation of Steven Simon in an article for the journal Survival:

In illuminating COVID-19’s utility for power-grabbers, observers have tended to point to three cases: Israel, Hungary and the Philippines. In Israel, Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu has been accused of manipulating pandemic fears to delay his prosecution on corruption charges by shuttering the courts, hamstringing his centrist opponent, Benjamin Gantz, and intensifying electronic surveillance of Israeli society. In Hungary, Prime Minister Viktor Orbán has cited the crisis to extract from a right-leaning legislature remarkably broad powers to suppress dissent. And in the Philippines, President Rodrigo Duterte, after mishandling the response to the pandemic, has moved to quash criticism and harshly imposed quarantine and curfew rules, ordering that violators be shot dead.

Similarly, as Zmigrod et al. (2020) remind us, the changes wrought by pandemics are often long term: “Historical pathogen prevalence still predicts contemporary ideological attitudes, and so if Covid-19 elevates the allure of authoritarian ideologies, the effects could be long-lasting.” Covid-19 has nurtured authoritarian sentiments, and the residues will remain long after we have discovered a vaccine. Based on the present environment, measures may become more stringent. Therefore, the only option available to proponents of liberty is to be a bulwark against tyranny by strongly opposing the violations of human rights in the name of preventing covid-19. Author:

Contact Lipton Matthews

Lipton Matthews is a researcher, business analyst, and contributor to mises.org, The Federalist, and the Jamaica Gleaner. He may be contacted at lo_matthews@yahoo.com or on Twitter (@matthewslipton

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