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Posts Tagged ‘Biden’

EconomicPolicyJournal.com: And the Biden Tax Hike Proposals Begin

Posted by M. C. on January 23, 2021

https://www.economicpolicyjournal.com/2021/01/and-biden-tax-hike-proposals-begin.html

Pete Buttigieg, President Joe Biden’s nominee to lead the U.S. Department of Transportation, this morning told a Senate panel considering his appointment that it’s crucial the country invests in strengthening transportation infrastructure nationwide.

And he launched the first suggestion for a tax hike. This one a gas tax:

Buttigieg talking about increasing the gas tax on Day 2 of Biden admin.— Philip Melanchthon Wegmann (@PhilipWegmann) January 21, 2021

RW
UPDATE

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Rough Ridin’ with Biden | Kunstler

Posted by M. C. on January 23, 2021

The threatened impeachment trial will be a marvel of casuistry — a procedure for removing someone from office who is no longer in office — and also for the transparently flimsy charge of “inciting the insurrection” at the capitol. As if to underscore the absurdity of that, Antifa squads rioted in Portland and Seattle on inauguration night. Their banners expressed less-than-jubilant sentiment for the new regime.

https://kunstler.com/clusterfuck-nation/rough-ridin-with-biden/

James Howard Kunstler

Speaking of the inauguration, I don’t know what was more peculiar: Lady Gaga sweeping out onto the capitol dais in Hunger Games drag —and I mean but exactly, down to the golden mockingjay pinned above her left breast — or Garth Brooks’s post-hymn dash to the exit as though he just heard the repo man was coming for his Gulfstream jet parked across the Potomac at Reagan National Airport.

The immense ranked American flags deployed silently down the mall in place of annoying US citizens lent a funereal vibe to the proceedings (as in the death of your country), while the thousands of massed national guard troops signaled the paranoia crackling under the surface as Ol’ White Joe Biden stepped forward to commence his party’s punishments against the unWoke (disguised as a call for “unity”). He was surrounded by a virtual wax museum of Deep Staters salivating for the upcoming blood-feast: The Obamas, Hillary and Bill (nodding off), Nancy, Chuck, Mitch… but just who was the Asian chap sitting behind the man-of-the-hour? Secret Service? Or his new minder (courtesy of Uncle Xi)?

As for Mr. Trump, he departed as he had arrived in 2016: stridently contemptuous toward the parasitical oligarchy that finally expelled him like a bladder-stone. The threatened impeachment trial will be a marvel of casuistry — a procedure for removing someone from office who is no longer in office — and also for the transparently flimsy charge of “inciting the insurrection” at the capitol. As if to underscore the absurdity of that, Antifa squads rioted in Portland and Seattle on inauguration night. Their banners expressed less-than-jubilant sentiment for the new regime. The Portland outfit broke windows and spray-painted the city’s Democratic headquarters, faking-out pols who had warned against an uprising of “white supremacists.” Of course, all those arrested would be promptly released without charges — demonstrating just how serious the Wokester officials running those cities really are about criminal anarchy. The grannies swept into the capitol rotunda by Antifa incursionists January 6th won’t be so lucky.

Neither did a much chattered-about military takeover happen during the tension-filled transition hours, though kibitzers on the web insist days later that it remains secretly underway. On his way out, Mr. Trump failed to pardon either Julian Assange or Edward Snowden, a disturbing failure, while he commuted the sentences of a couple of two-bit rap-stars, based on their contributions to advancing human dignity. And whatever Mr. Trump finally rooted out in the way of declassified FBI documents has already disappeared into the DC quicksand.

Much adored as he is for valiantly opposing everything swampish, it might be best now for Mr. Trump to just retire from the political scene and leave the battle to others. He made his point, colorfully and often bravely, considering the astounding bad faith of his adversaries, though he certainly could have articulated the stakes better and with more decorum. He leaves not merely a vacuum but a sucking chest wound of leadership opposing hysterical and tyrannical Wokery. Who will step forward in his absence? Probably someone we haven’t heard from yet. That’s how these things work.

The narrative instructs us that the election is resolved — so shut up about it already. But the election is not resolved. Enterprising gumshoes will be sifting through the evidence, interviewing witnesses, and combing through the thickets of fraud for a long time to come. Crime will be outed, if not prosecuted. Mr. Biden moves under a cloud of illegitimacy. Beyond the lingering election dispute lies all that evidence about the Biden family’s money-grubbing operations in foreign lands, clear down to the money-laundering records. Think that won’t bite eventually?

Nothing else is resolved about the national drift toward the Niagara of woe just downstream of here. Mr. Biden couldn’t have asked for trouble more loudly on Day One than by shutting down deportations of foreign nationals here illegally and signaling an open borders policy. The legions of newly unemployed and financially ruined US small business owners and workers may take a dim view of that. Rent and mortgage moratoria are extended as far ahead as June, as if landlords and mortgage-lenders don’t need to be paid to keep the banking system running. The new president has promised further, and even more severe, Covid-19 lockdowns. The Democratic Party apparently wants to utterly destroy what’s left of the real on-the-ground economy. No incoming US president has gotten off to a more feckless and ill-fated start.

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Caitlin Johnstone: The next two years will be the Democratic Party at its most transparent — RT Op-ed

Posted by M. C. on January 22, 2021

In one of the more bizarre displays in the Senate hearings, Biden’s nominee to lead the State Department, Tony Blinken, defended his support for the disastrous Libya intervention during his time in the Obama administration by blaming its aftermath on Muammar Gaddafi, the leader who was mutilated to death in the streets after a US-led intervention to oust him.

https://www.rt.com/op-ed/513255-caitlin-johnstone-democratic-party-biden/

By Caitlin Johnstone, an independent journalist based in Melbourne, Australia. Her website is here and you can follow her on Twitter @caitoz

Joe Biden is now the president of the USA. His day-one executive orders should have prioritized ending the single worst crisis in the world in Yemen, a war in which he campaigned on ending US involvement, but they did not.

Ending US participation in the Yemen genocide could and should have begun on day one. In These Times reported the following back in November (emphasis added):

“One thing Biden can do, starting on day one, is end U.S. involvement in the Yemen war – involvement that he helped initiate. ​By executive order, Biden could get the Pentagon to end intelligence sharing for the Saudi coalition airstrikes, end logistical support, and end spare parts transfers that keep Saudi warplanes in the air,” Hassan El-Tayyab, lead Middle East policy lobbyist for the Friends Committee on National Legislation, a progressive organization, tells In These Times. ​“He could restore humanitarian assistance to northern Yemen. He could use his power as president to put pressure on other nations that are supporting the Saudi coalition – like France, the United Kingdom and Canada – and get them to follow suit. He could have the State Department put a stop on all arms sales to Saudi Arabia unless they meet certain benchmarks.”

Biden did none of these things, which, while unsurprising, is still inexcusable. This isn’t some 10-year infrastructure plan we’re talking about. This is the worst mass atrocity on our entire planet, and it should be treated with proportionate urgency. This administration consciously chose not to end US participation in that atrocity as swiftly as possible, which will remain an inexcusable decision, even if the Yemen war is eventually ended later.

Instead of grilling Biden about his decision not to prioritize his promise to end the Yemen war, which is what any real journalist would do, the press are asking him stupid-nonsense questions about whether he can “unite the country.”

CNN keeps screaming at Biden “can you unite the country” and he keeps ignoring them. Hilariously dumb question, even funnier reaction.— Secular Talk (@KyleKulinski) January 20, 2021

In the lead-up to Biden’s inauguration, we were treated to some Senate hearings on his cabinet picks, in which we learnt that this administration will continue Trump’s murderous coup-mongering in Venezuela, that it will maintain Trump’s incendiary decision to have the US embassy in Jerusalem, that reviving the Iran nuclear deal is a long way off from happening and will first require consultation with Israel, and that it will be continuing Trump’s cold-war escalations against China.

In one of the more bizarre displays in the Senate hearings, Biden’s nominee to lead the State Department, Tony Blinken, defended his support for the disastrous Libya intervention during his time in the Obama administration by blaming its aftermath on Muammar Gaddafi, the leader who was mutilated to death in the streets after a US-led intervention to oust him.

“Here’s what I think we misjudged,” Blinken said. “We didn’t fully appreciate the fact that one of the things Gaddafi had done over the years was to make sure that there was no possible rival to his power, and as a result there was no effective bureaucracy, no effective administration in Libya with which to work when he was gone.”

By “when he was gone,” Blinken means when he was dead, because the United States helped kill him after staging an intervention based on lies. He is defending his push for an intervention that led to a failed state in which people are sold as slaves by saying that, if Gaddafi had run his country better, it would not have collapsed into violence and chaos when the Obama administration murdered him.

This is like an axe murderer blaming his actions on his victim’s bad housekeeping. The brazenness with which imperialist goons can shrug off all responsibility for their actions will never cease to astonish.

At Senate confirmation hearing, Secretary of State nominee Anthony Blinken defends support for war in Libya“In fact, I think it’s been written about. I was [Biden’s] national security adviser, and he didn’t agree with that course of action.” pic.twitter.com/ZyCzTLXtOP— Kevin Gosztola (@kgosztola) January 19, 2021

The next two years will be the Democratic Party at its most transparent. After two years, they are statistically likely to lose control of the House and/or Senate, after which time they’ll be able to pawn off all imperialist bloodshed and lack of progress on an ‘obstructionist Congress’, like they did for the last six years of the Obama administration. But until then, the Democrats are going to have to own all their reactionary depravity and mass murder on their own.

This will set a sharp contrast from the past four years, during which every mundane part of the US empire’s institutionalized abuse was portrayed as an anomaly unique to the Trump administration. Unable to blame their refusal to advance progressive policies and basic human decency on Trump and Vladimir Putin these next two years, they’ll be forced to kill any leftward movement all on their own. Which is why we are now already seeing mass-media articles with headlines such as “Under Biden, it’s time for Democrats to let go of Medicare for All.”

And this period will provide ample opportunities to highlight the fact that’s exactly what the Democratic Party exists to do: kill all leftward movement in the most powerful government on earth. As the US continues its soul-crushing neoliberal policies at home and its murderous neoconservative policies abroad with the same degree of psychopathy it displayed in previous administrations, we must draw attention to the fact that it is the Democratic Party that bears the responsibility for these matters.

The sooner Americans can discredit the Democratic Party as a legitimate vehicle for progressive change, the sooner they can start looking for other tools. The first step to escape is to stop pushing against the fake door falsely labeled ‘exit’.

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Biden’s COVID-19 ‘Rescue’ Plan Is Based On 5 Big Lies – Issues & Insights

Posted by M. C. on January 19, 2021

So why is Biden claiming the rollout has been a dismal failure? One reason is to bash President Donald Trump, but the bigger reason is to justify a massive new spending program to “fix” the problem.

https://issuesinsights.com/2021/01/18/bidens-covid-rescue-plan-is-based-on-5-big-lies/

By I & I Editorial Board

Joe Biden went on prime time this week to promote his COVID-19 plans. For a guy who promises to be honest with the public, he’s off to a terrible start. Since mainstream media fact-checkers are now on their four-year vacation, we’ll set the record straight on several key claims he made.

1) “You will see it very clearly if you examine what the twin crises of pandemic and this sinking economy have laid bare.”

Sinking economy? Where has Biden been for the past six months? As the Bureau of Economic Analysis has already reported, the economy grew at a stunning 33.4% in the third quarter of this year – well above anyone’s expectations. The Atlanta Fed’s GDPNow pegs growth in the fourth quarter at a very strong 7.4%. (The last time GDP grew that much in a quarter was during the Reagan boom.) Unemployment, which was supposed to be close to 10% now, according to mainstream economists, is down to 6.7%. What’s more, as of November, 17 states had unemployment levels at 5% or lower. That’s not to say we are out of the woods, but the idea that the economy is “sinking” is a figment of Biden’s imagination. Either that, or he’s purposely misleading the country to justify another $1.9 trillion in stimulus spending.

Over the weekend, a Biden aid claimed the economy was “spiraling downward.”

2) “Moody’s, an independent Wall Street firm, said my approach will create more than 18 million good-paying jobs.”

It is true that Moody’s economist Mark Zandi claimed in a report that Biden’s economic plan would create millions of jobs. But as we noted in this space earlier, Zandi is a partisan with a poor track record.

 It was the same Mark Zandi who predicted that if Trump won the election in 2016, he’d cause “a lot of lost jobs, higher unemployment, higher interest rates, lower stock prices.”

Zandi predicted that in Trump’s first term the unemployment rate would be 5.7% in 2019, and climb from there. Actual result: Unemployment was 3.5% at the end of 2019, and falling.

He said there’d be 146 million jobs in 2019. Actual result: 152 million.

Zandi said the economy would eke out just 2.8% real GDP growth from 2016 through 2019. Actual number: 7.7%.

Referring to this figure without providing context is highly misleading.

3) “ But, the vaccine rollout in the United States has been a dismal failure thus far.”

This is another Big Biden Lie that we exposed on these pages a while ago. Currently, the U.S. leads the world in the number of vaccinations administered and the number who’ve been fully vaccinated, and ranks behind only the United Kingdom among western nations on a per capita basis. What’s more, daily vaccination rates continue to skyrocket in the U.S., topping 747,000 on the day Biden made his speech.

So why is Biden claiming the rollout has been a dismal failure? One reason is to bash President Donald Trump, but the bigger reason is to justify a massive new spending program to “fix” the problem.

4) “This gets money quickly into the pockets of millions of Americans who will spend it immediately on food and rent and other basic needs. As the economists tell us, that helps the whole economy grow.”

Biden was talking about his plans to cut another stimulus check of $1,400 to Americans, which would be on top of the $600 checks people are getting right now, thanks to the last $900 billion COVID-19 bill, as well as the $400 boost in weekly unemployment checks.

But “economists” are hardly all in favor of these measures. CBS News reported that “economists are split over whether increasing the stimulus checks from $600 to $2,000 per person is a good idea.”

Liberal economist Larry Summers called the $2,000 payments a “big mistake,” saying that “there is no good economic argument for the $2,000 checks” and that, in fact, they risk overheating the economy.

As for the unemployment bonus, some economists have noted that making unemployment nearly as, if not more, lucrative than holding a job will – not surprisingly – discourage people from finding work. No matter what Biden thinks, that’s not how you grow the economy.

Finally, it’s far from clear that people will “spend it immediately.” Some 60% of the money sent out through the CARES Act was either saved or used to pay down debt, according to a study published by the National Bureau of Economic Analysis.

5) “A growing number of top economists has shown, even our debt situation will be more stable, not less stable if we seize this moment with vision and purpose.”

There are some economists on the left who figure that, with interest rates so low, why not borrow trillions more to “invest” in liberal wish-list items.

But it’s hardly a consensus, and we seriously doubt that it’s “growing.”

Manhattan Institute economist Brian Riedl explained the folly of this thinking:

“First, the debt is already set to soar in the absence of any new spending. And second, these bloated debt levels will mean that any future rise in interest rates could bring a full-scale debt crisis.”

Meanwhile, Forbes reported earlier this month that “the debt load governments like the U.S. are taking on to fund such stimulus measures could stall economic growth for years to come, the World Bank warned Tuesday, echoing concerns among experts worried inflation could trigger another recession.”

As the Committee to Unleash Prosperity notes, Biden’s would be the fifth – or it is sixth? – virus-relief bill enacted in less than a year, and would bring the total to almost $5.5 trillion.

And Biden’s plan is stuffed full of liberal wish-list items that have nothing to do with COVID. A Biden adviser tried over the weekend to defend the plan’s inclusion of things like $20 billion for public transit, $9 billion for cybersecurity, and a federal $15 minimum wage.

“Only a half-wit would ever support this monstrosity,” the Committee wryly observes, “which means it is likely to romp through the House and Senate.”

So there you have it. A $1.9 trillion stimulus plan built on lies and misinformation. Joe “No Malarkey” Biden is not off to a good start.

— Written by the I&I Editorial Board

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BIDEN’S BANANA REPUBLIC – Matterhorn – GoldSwitzerland

Posted by M. C. on January 16, 2021

https://goldswitzerland.com/bidens-banana-republic/

By Egon von Greyerz

Donald Trump is probably the luckiest presidential candidate in history to have lost an election. He doesn’t realise it yet as he suffers from a self-inflicted wound in the final moments of his presidency. Nor does Biden yet realise how unlucky he is to have won. But that will soon change as his presidency goes from crisis to crisis in all areas from monetary to fiscal to social and political. Very little will go right during his presidency.

The next four years could easily be four years of hell for Biden (if he stays the course for the whole four years), for the US and thus for the world.

TRUMP OBLIGED AS PREDICTED

When Trump won the election in November 2016 I wrote an article, dated Nov 18, 2016, called “Trump Will Grow US Debt Exponentially” .

The article also contained the following graph. In the article I predicted that US debt would double by 2025 to $40 trillion and that it would be $28t in January 2021 at the end of the four years.

Well, surprise, surprise, the debt is today $27.77t which can easily be rounded up to $28t.

I am certainly no forecasting genius, nor was the forecast just luck.

No, it was applying the best method that we have all been given but that few apply or understand.

This method is called HISTORY.

DEBT UP 31X & TAX REVENUE UP 6X

US debt had on average doubled every 8 years since Reagan took over in 1981. So as Trump became president in Jan 2017, he inherited a debt of $20t. Easy then to forecast that 8 years later the debt would be $40t. The $28t forecast for Jan 2021 is just the mathematical in-between point between $20t and $40t.

Even worse than the debt explosion is the the lack of tax revenue to finance the escalating and chronic budget deficits. As the graph above shows, debt has grown 31x since 1981 whilst tax revenues have only grown 6x.

The US deficit is currently $3.3t which is virtually equal to total tax revenue of $3.4t. This means that 50% of annual government spending needs to be borrowed.

BANANA REPUBLIC

The US economy now clearly fits the definition of a Banana republic. A brief description is: “In political science, the term banana republic describes a politically unstable country with an economy dependent upon the exportation of a limited-resource product, such as bananas or minerals.”

In the case of the US, the product they export is of course dollars printed out of thin air – a wonderful export item since supply is unlimited.

Further description is: “Typically, a banana republic has a society of extremely stratified social classes, usually a large impoverished working class and a ruling class plutocracy, composed of the business, political, and military elites of that society.”

Like all Banana Republics, the US economy and social structure is now on the way to perdition with virtually nil chance for Biden & Co to reverse the inevitable course of events.

HISTORY – HISTORY

So back to history – History is what has formed us and history doesn’t just rhyme as Mark Twain said but it often repeats itself. The debt explosion is another good example.

If more people studied and understood history, they would not just recognise the utmost importance of what lies behind us but also that history will teach us about what lies in front of us.

But very few scholars and no journalists study history. Instead we are now in an era when both the media and universities worldwide want to erase history and rewrite the history books. This shows us the total lack of understanding of the utmost importance of history in the evolution of the world.

But this is part of the total decadence and denial that we see at the end of major eras or cycles. The current cycle, whether it is just a 300 year cycle or a 2,000 year old cycle is now coming to an end. These changes clearly don’t happen overnight but the first phase of the fall can be dramatic. And that phase is likely to be starting very soon.

BIDEN ONLY HAS ONE TRICK UP HIS SLEEVE

So what will Biden and his masters do? Well Biden has already called for $ trillions of further support.

He also said: “If we don’t act now, things are going to get much worse and harder to get out of a hole later.”

Well we always knew that Biden really only had one trick up his sleeve – TO PRINT MORE than any president has done in history. To beat Trump is not hard, he only printed $8t in 4 years!

Let’s just remind ourselves that it took 200 years (1808-2008) to increase the US debt from $65 million to $10 trillion.

When Obama took over in Jan 2009 he inherited a $8t debt. Eight years later he handed over a $20t batten to Trump.

In 8 years Obama printed and borrowed more money than the previous presidents had achieved in the course of 200 years!

So will Biden print more than $10t?

Definitely!

Will he do it in 4 years? Most probably!

As I forecasted in my article in 2016, the debt will be at least $40t in Jan 2025, a $12t increase from today.

But no one should believe that Biden will stop at $40t. The US economy is already leaking like a sieve. And the problems have just started.

The problems in the currently semi-paralysed US economy will escalate at a rapid rate and the Biden team will attempt to plug every hole at all levels from a minimum wage to saving major corporations.

But sadly, Banana Republics don’t survive by printing worthless money.

PROBLEMS IN THE FINANCIAL SYSTEM AND NOT CV-19 STARTED THE CRISIS

Still, we mustn’t forget what started the latest phase of problems in the US economy.

It wasn’t Covid back in February 2020. No, that was a mere catalyst. The underlying disaster was a lot deeper. The real problem started back in Aug-Sep 2019. This is when the problems in the financial system became acute and both the ECB and Fed started flooding the system with money. But not real money of course but just worthless paper money created with just pushing a button.

Between the Fed and the ECB just under $8t of “fake” money has been created digitally since Sep 2019. It must obviously be called fake since nobody had to perform any work or produce any goods or services against this money.

It is really scandalous to call it money since it is no different from the Monopoly game money.

WHEN THE MUSIC STOPS…….

The printed $8 trillion at $15 per hour (Biden’s new minimum wage) equals 60 million man hours. But in the modern MMT (Money Market Theory) paradigm, you don’t need to work for the money. Whatever the world needs, central banks and governments can just create out of nothing.

That is until the music stops. And Biden or Harris are the likely conductors who will preside over the music stopping and the whole edifice collapsing.

The wise will obviously find a chair already now because when the music stops there will be no chairs free and all hell will break loose.

By that time debt will not just be in the $trillions or $100s of trillions. No, the printing will have reached $ and EUR quadrillions as not only most collapsing debt will need to be bought by central banks but also derivatives which probably amount to $2 quadrillion or more.

In addition, medical care, social security and unfunded pensions will probably exceed $1 quadrillion globally and add to the demise of the financial system.

Could I be wrong. Maybe. A close friend gave me once a T-shirt with the inscription:

“I AM NOT ALWAYS RIGHT – But I am never wrong”!

The gift must have been a subtle hint – Hmmm

Still, in my humble view I don’t believe that any orderly reset will change the inevitable course of events. So as far as I am concerned, it is not IF but WHEN.

A professional life of over half a century has taught me that even the most evident events can take longer to develop than you think.

But as I see risk at an extreme, now is the time to prepare.

MARKETS

So to finish, let’s have a quick look at where I see markets. I know forecasting is a mug’s game and I am not really interested in how markets move in the short term more than from an observational point of view.

In the next few years it is all about economic survival and wealth preservation rather than worrying about where the Dow or the Dax is going next.

See the rest here

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Biden and power by force, by Thierry Meyssan

Posted by M. C. on January 14, 2021

https://www.voltairenet.org/article211917.html

by Thierry Meyssan

The seizure of the Capitol by supporters of President Trump is presented as an attempted coup, while he is still in the White House. On closer inspection, it could be the other way around. Freedom of speech has been confiscated by an illegitimate power in favour of Joe Biden.

The Usual hype

JPEG - 30 kbFor “The West Australian”, for his last days, Donald Trump, like Adolf Hitler, wishes for “the twilight of the gods”.

In every presidential election in the United States, we are told that the incumbent was a monster, that we are sorry for the crimes he committed, but that a new day is dawning for humanity with the rise of a new leader. The only exception is the election of Donald Trump in 2016. At that time and even before he was sworn in, we were told that this billionaire was elected following a regrettable mistake, that he was misogynistic, homophobic, racist, that he did not embody the “country of freedom”, but the supremacism of the “little whites” and the interests of the rich. For four years, we were constantly being convinced that this diagnosis was right. He was called a liar and his ideas and achievements were ignored.

This time, the insurrection on Capitol Hill allowed the dominant news agencies to add a layer to it. The outgoing president, Donald Trump, is unanimously accused of destroying democracy, which the incoming president, Joe Biden, will of course restore. Are those who remember the elections of George H. Bush, Bill Clinton, George W. Bush and Barack Obama ready to be fooled again?JPEG - 62.1 kbFor “Milliyet” (Turkey), the virtuous America has gone mad.

Yes, because the shock caused by the capture of the Capitol is such that one is willing to believe anything. If the United States is inexorably heading towards civil war [1], what will become of us Westerners?

This is why we did not want to see the crisis that is beginning to unfold. Only a few Greek newspapers had recently explained the reasons for the anger, which we have been dealing with for five years already (i.e. before Trump’s election).

This is also why we don’t want to look it in the face and we are satisfied with the blind comments that this shameful episode will not have a tomorrow. But who can believe it? It is true that things will calm down for a while and the repressive machine will crush the January 6 demonstrators, but it will only be a postponement and the civil war will not be long in coming.

Non-Westerners have already understood that the United States has such internal problems that it will no longer be able to set itself up as a model for the world, let alone give lessons in democracy to those it wants to subjugate.

Undemocratic elections

JPEG - 33.6 kbAccording to “La Razon” (Spain), the insurgency in the United States was the Trumpeters taking Capitol Hill.

In the 2000 presidential election, the bewildered world watched as the Supreme Court chose to ignore the recount of the Florida ballots. In accordance with the Constitution, it declared that it had no business interfering with a state’s ballot and was constrained only by Governor Jeb Bush’s decision that his brother George W. Bush had been elected by his constituents. Twenty years later, the world is watching the dismissal of 60 appeals filed by Donald Trump alleging massive fraud in many states.

As I wrote earlier, from a US legal perspective, Al Gore and then Donald Trump lost. But from a democratic point of view, they probably won. To tell the truth, it is impossible to know exactly, but given the results of the other elections that were held at the same time, there is little doubt about that. The only thing that can be said is that there is nothing democratic about this election: the counting of the votes is done by the governors, who in many federal states choose the civil servants or private companies that will do the counting. On the contrary, if the system were democratic, the counting would be done by citizens in public. Everyone could see ballot boxes being taken from the polling stations to a counting centre where officials opened them and then closed the curtains to prevent citizens from finding out more. No one can question the sincerity of these officials, but no one can guarantee it either. A democratic election can only exist in transparency. Therefore, this election is legal under US law, but simply not democratic.

Turnarounds

JPEG - 39.3 kbAccording to the “Corriere della Sera” (Italy), Trump’s fury is the assault on the Capitol.

To understand the events, we must observe two reversals of the situation that preceded the attack on the Capitol.

In mid-December 2020, President Trump organised a meeting at the Oval Office with the participation of General Michael Flynn. Flynn outlined his idea of martial law for transparent elections [2]. Most of the councillors present were opposed, despite the change of leadership in the Pentagon. Two weeks later, on 4 January 2021, the 10 former defence secretaries still alive signed a brief op-ed in the Washington Post [3]. They assured that all those who tried to introduce martial law would have to answer to the Justice Department. The unanimity of the former Secretaries of Defense attests that martial law was feasible and real. According to the Post [4], which reconstructed the meeting on the basis of the confidences of the former defence secretaries (who did not attend but were informed), President Trump never contemplated staying in power through the use of violence. On the contrary, he filed complaints and supported various legal actions to have the election annulled. He was preparing to campaign to return to the White House in 2025 [5].JPEG - 53.2 kbFor the Hindustan Times (India), the states of the Americas are no longer united, but on fire.

Vice-President Mike Pence, who was under heavy pressure from the Jacksonians, made his position known on January 6, the day the two congressional assemblies met in joint session [6]. He noted that his role as presiding officer was purely ceremonial and that it was not his job to decide the dispute, even though a certain reading of the Constitution theoretically gives him the right to do so. He therefore deferred to the parliamentarians. To do otherwise would have opened the smouldering civil war. At times like these, everyone knows what he or she can lose, and few people, particularly among the notables, are willing to take such a risk. As soon as this position became known, several important members of the Trump team resigned. The Jacksonians experienced these reversals as cowardice and betrayal of their ideals and their homeland.

A few hours later, Donald Trump held a meeting, not far from Congress, to denounce once again a “stolen election” and announce his return for the 2024 campaign. He never called on his supporters to take Capitol Hill, although some may have understood it that way.

Taking the Capitol

JPEG - 30.3 kbAccording to “Dawn” (Greece), “Trumpism is here and it threatens us”.

Some groups that were marginalized during the meeting tried to enter the Capitol. According to the videos, the Capitol police let them in without any real resistance. The demonstrators initially behaved deferentially in this place, which is sacred to them. However, they had been infiltrated by a group of Antifas. Without knowing why or how, things suddenly got out of hand. The hemicycle was invaded and parliamentarians’ offices were ransacked.

Anyone who has lived through a civil war knows that this is the worst thing that can happen. Like the English philosopher Thomas Hobbes, who lived through the first English civil war, they all believe that it is better to suffer a tyrannical state than to be deprived of a state (The Leviathan [7]). Taking the Capitol and eventually overthrowing the US “order” is an act with terrible consequences. It has not gone that far. The police who had allowed the demonstrators to enter the building suddenly and successfully pushed them back.

President Donald Trump himself called for calm, but without his wife. According to the US national religion, God’s blessing – and thus peace and prosperity – must descend through the president and first lady [8] on the “chosen people”. By choosing to speak on his own, Donald Trump has challenged the national religion.

Reactions in the US

JPEG - 37.6 kbAccording to the “Daily Mirror” (UK), now in the United States, it is now government by the mob.

Democratic congressmen, led by House Speaker Nancy Pelosi, immediately accused President Trump of having launched his troops on an assault on Congress. They proposed to impeach President Trump, even though he had only 13 days left in his term, through the 25th Amendment, paragraph 4 of the Constitution. This move, which they had previously discussed, would remove his right to stand for re-election.

However, the text invoked should not apply in this case: it concerns a disability attributable to the health of the President. The debates at the time of its adoption concerned the heart attack which prevented President Woodrow Wilson from fulfilling his duties at the end of his term of office (2 October 1919 to 4 March 1921) and the stroke – less serious – of President Dwight Eisenhower (24 September 1955 to 20 January 1961) which temporarily deprived him of some of his faculties and led him to share his powers with his vice-president Richard Nixon.

The ruling class felt the wind of the cannonball blowing. Whether the capture of Capitol Hill was a failure of its police force, as they try to persuade us, or whether it was organized under a false flag by Donald Trump’s enemies, those who conceived it have the capacity to overthrow institutions and sack their entire staff.

Reactions abroad

JPEG - 26.8 kbFor the “Boston Herald” (USA), this is chaos.

After a century of US domination, the rest of the world still doesn’t know what they are. It doesn’t know that the Constitution was written to establish a regime inspired by the British monarchy and that it was rebalanced by 10 amendments that guarantee people’s rights. The country that Alexis de Tocqueville describes in Democracy in America [9] is the country of this compromise, a country of freedom, but this balance was upset during the Obama years. Blinded, the rest of the world did not see that the United States has reverted to what it was in the first four years of its foundation: an oligarchic system, this time in the service of a class of international billionaires. It deliberately ignored the plight of the former middle classes, the grouping of the population by cultural affinity and the preparation of two-thirds of the population for civil war.

The Chinese media cannot help but notice the double standard when comparing photos of the Hong Kong assembly being taken by a high-voltage crowd with those from Washington. While the Russian media, busy with the Orthodox Christmas party, smiled disillusioned at their historic rival on land.

For their part, the Western media have embraced without reservation the neo-Puritan “cancel culture” that destroys all republican symbols and replaces them with others glorifying minorities, not for what they do, but because they are minorities. In doing so, they have identified a little more with the ideology that oppresses “America” [10]. As submissive vassals, they presented the US election as if their readers were going to participate and Joe Biden as their new master.JPEG - 29.2 kb The “Chicago Tribune” (USA) does not denounce sedition, but sees insurrection.

Reacting to the events on Capitol Hill, European leaders are taking their dreams for granted: German President and former head of the secret service, Frank-Walter Steinmeier, said that armed pro-Trump protesters had taken Capitol Hill; while the French President and former secretary to a well-known philosopher, Emmanuel Macron, denounced an attack on the fundamental principle of democracy “One man, one vote”.

No. With few exceptions, the Capitol demonstrators were unarmed.
No. The U.S. Constitution does not provide for equality among citizens of any state.
Yes. It is the US ruling class that despises democracy and the Jacksonians who defend it.JPEG - 28.1 kb“God help us! “proclaims the Philadephia Daily News (USA). “The non-civil war has come to this point: rioters have taken the Capitol”.

Already the very great fortunes that stand behind Joe Biden have seized power. They have put an end to freedom of expression. They “preventively” closed the Twitter, Facebook, Instagram, Snapchat and Twitch accounts of the White House, President Trump and his supporters in order to “prevent them from calling for further violence” (sic). In doing so, they have arrogated to themselves the powers of Justice and have escaped the Trump decree of 28 June 2020 enjoining them to choose between the status of neutral carrier of information or that of committed producer of information [11].Thierry Meyssan Translation
Roger Lagassé

[1] “Civil war becomes inevitable in the USA”, by Thierry Meyssan, Translation Roger Lagassé, Voltaire Network, 15 December 2020.

[2] “General Flynn, QAnon and the US Elections”, by Thierry Meyssan, Translation Roger Lagassé, Voltaire Network, 1 December 2020.

[3] “The time for questioning the election results has passed”, Washington Post (United States) , Voltaire Network, 4 January 2021.

[4] “Trump’s final efforts to overturn election create discomfort for the military”, Paul Sonne & Missy Ryan & Ellen Narashima, The Washington Post, January 6, 2021.

[5] “‘I’ll See You in Four Years’: Trump and the Ghost of Grover Cleveland”, Peter Baker, The New York Times, January 3, 2021

[6] “Mike Pence letter to Members of Congress”, by Mike Pence, Voltaire Network, 6 January 2021.

[7] Leviathan or the matter, forme, & power of a common-wealth ecclesiastical and civil, Thomas Hobbes, 1651

[8] Contrairement à une idée reçue, la fonction de «Première dame» n’est pas cérémonielle, mais religieuse. Elle incombe à l’épouse du président et, s’il est célibataire, divorcé ou veuf, à une femme de sa famille qu’il désigne.

[9] De la démocratie en Amérique, Alexis de Tocqueville, Gosselin (1re partie 1835, 2ème partie 1840.).

[10] Les Occidentaux sont persuadés que les Noirs et les Hispaniques ont tous voté contre Trump. En réalité ses électeurs comptaient 18 % d’Afro-Américains et 37 % de Latinos selon les instituts de sciences politiques.

[11] “Executive Order on Preventing Online Censorship”, by Donald Trump, Voltaire Network, 28 May 2020.

Thierry Meyssan

Political consultant, President-founder of the Réseau Voltaire (Voltaire Network). Latest work in English – Before Our Very Eyes, Fake Wars and Big Lies: From 9/11 to Donald Trump, Progressive Press, 2019. Biden and power by force Sheikh Rohani stirs up trouble in the Middle East Arbitrariness and censorship are back in the West Who is Destroying Lebanon and Why? Civil war becomes inevitable in the USA This author’s articles To send a message

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Democrats Launch Their Assault on Red State America – PaulCraigRoberts.org

Posted by M. C. on January 13, 2021

As journalist Ekaterina Blinova instantly recognized, the effect of the stolen election is to create one-party rule in the United States. Of course, the Democrats won’t rule. Rule will be by the interest groups for whom the Democrats will front. As the Republcans abandoned the American people and joined in the denunciation of the “insurrectionist Trump,” there are few voters left who will vote Republican. By its cowardice, the Republican Party has destroyed itself.

It must be a new high water mark of American insouciance that Parler executives thought the ruling Establishment would allow them free speech.

https://www.paulcraigroberts.org/2021/01/12/democrats-launch-their-assault-on-red-state-america/

Paul Craig Roberts

The opening salvo against red state America is the article of impeachment against President Trump introduced on January 11 by House Speaker Nancy Pelosi and Democrat Representatives David Cicilline, Ted Lieu, and Jamie Raskin.  So much for Biden’s promise to “unify the country.”  

What is the intent of this article of impeachment?  It cannot possibly be to remove Trump from office.  Trump will have left office before the Senate could vote on impeachment. There is no such thing as impeaching a person who is not in office. Clearly impeachment has nothing to do with getting Trump out of office.

How does it unify the country to follow up an election believed by half of the US voting population to have been stolen with impeaching the president who is regarded as the victim of a stolen election? Adding insult to injury will only further enrage 75 million or more Trump voters,  and many honest Democrats, who regard the election as stolen.  If the Establishment and its Democrat, Republican, and media allies truly believe the election not to have been stolen, why wasn’t the evidence permitted to be examined so that the controversy could be settled instead of ignored?  Ignoring the evidence deepens the suspicion as does labeling those who challenged the election “enemies of democracy.”  Democrats are now trying to censure Republican members of the House and Senate who supported having the evidence presented to Congress.  Why censure someone who wants evidence to be examined?

What many Americans and people abroad do not comprehend is that in the 2020 election Trump  officially got 74,222,958 votes.  This is the official number, which is understated by the 10 million vote suppression used against him.  In “losing,”  Trump’s 74,222,958 official votes are more votes than any elected president has ever received with the exception of Biden whose vote count was raised by 10 million fraudulent ballots. How is the country unified by demonizing half of it?  Are the Democrats’ threats and reprisals against Trump and his supporters unifying?  

I watched the presentations by independent experts to three state legislatures of the detailed evidence showing evidence that the election was stolen in the swing states. Some of the experts explaining the election’s theft were people of color as were many of those who signed affidavits under penalty of perjury of the electoral fraud that they witnessed.  This information has never been presened by the media to the public, nor has any media, election officials, Department of Justice, or Congress examined the evidence.  It is overwhelming evidence ignored.

Whether of not you believe that Biden—the most uninspiring presidential candidate in American history—got 81 million votes (the largest in American history), why do Pelosi and the Democrats want to make themselves even more hated and distrusted by half of the country by impeaching the president whose reelection they stole?  

This is rubbing salt in the wound.  Half of the country already regards Biden as an illegitimate president and regards the Democrats as power-mad totalitarians hostile to democracy.  What does Pelosi achieve by furthering this image of Democrats? She is damning her party and herself. Why?

The answer is to generate fear in Republicans and Trump supporters.  

The Democrats are using open unabashed retribution to scare Republicans and Trump supporters into compliance. Everywhere you look Republican members of Congress both House and Senate, Trump’s present and former cabinet members, and present and former members of the White House staff are denouncing Trump and putting distance between Trump and themselves. The latest is Fiona Hill, formerly of Trump’s National Security Council. She denounces Trump for having “put us on the brink of civil war.” Note that for Republican Fiona Hill, it is not a stolen election that puts “us on the brink of civil war,” but the protest against the election theft. This is the position of the Republican Party.  In other words, the Republicans have surrendered.  They are useless to the people.

As a large number of videos made available online by people who attended the rally show, the Capitol police allowed protestors into the Capitol.  The Trump supporters were not smart enough not to take the bait. Once inside, the Democrats had their “insurrection” and “storming of the Capitol.”  

It achieved its purpose. It stopped presentation of the evidence showing Congress a stolen election. Scared by the presstitutes one voice proclamation of an attempted coup, the Republicans wilted and ran for their political lives knowing that they would be blamed for “aiding and abetting Trump’s insurrection.” 

The Democrats intend to keep them running, and that is what the impeachment is about.

Trump supporters are in for it as well.  The FBI, which has been hand-in-hand with Democrats throughout the Russiagate and impeachment hoaxes, is now hunting down those who attended the Trump rally.  Those for whom the FBI cannot invent grounds for arrest have their names turned over to the presstitutes who agitate for their firing from their jobs. Already policemen, corporate employees and executives, including a chief financial officer, have been fired for attending the Trump rally, and recording artists dropped because they attended the rally. Dumbshit indoctrinated school children have impoverished their own families by ratting out their parents for attending the rally and causing them to be fired.

Children squealing on their parents to the media is the worst part of the Democrats’ assault on America, because it shows that the liberal propaganda that passes for education in the schools has destroyed solidarity and loyalty in the family.  Without the family, there is no society.  Essentially, without family there is no country.

In so many ways Americans are now people without a country. 

As the blatently public theft of a presidential election shows, democracy is a dead value among elites and institutions in the United States.  The word will continue to be used as cover for oligarchic rule in the interest of the few. All who find the courage to challenge rule by the few will be demonized as “enemies of democracy.”  We are already seeing it.  President Trump and his “deplorables” are already declared “enemies of democracy.”

Whether or not Americans believe Trump and his supporters are enemies of democracy, many will be caused by fear to go along with it.  Otherwise, they will be the next to be outed, fired, and prosecuted.

I am not optimistic.  One reason for my lack of optimism is the age of disinformation in which we live. Disinformation is used by the Establishment to conform the public to its agendas. Disinformation is used to reconstruct white society. Disinformation is even used by Trump supporters in efforts to keep alive hope that the stolen election will be overturned or that Trump will win reelection in four years.

Another reason I am not optimistic is that I read comment sections of websites that host courageous and insightful commentators in hope of encountering intelligence and a rising awareness that could result in effective resistance.  But what do I find?  Inability to comprehend what they have read. Narcissists  hiding behind fake names. Nit-picking in place of weighing a well-stated presentation. And the ever-present trolls demeaning the authors with ad hominum accusations that are spread into social media.  

I am also not optimistic when I see that Trump, who has experienced the evil power of the Establishment, has not come to the realization that the last blow he can strike against the Establishment is the pardon of Assange and Snowden, two who are persecuted for telling the truth. Perhaps the reason is that many of Trump’s patriotic supporters have fallen for the Establishment’s line that Assange and Snowden are Russian agents who acted against America.

In the United States, Canada, Australia, New Zealand, UK, and all of Western Europe, telling the truth is being criminalized.  The result will be the destruction of the truth-teller. This is true as well within the universities.  Identity politics and Establishment agendas rule.  If you cross them, you are out.

Objective truth has been redefined as a “white construct” that serves “systemic racism” and misogynists. White people, especially heterosexual white males, have been assigned the role that Karl Marx gave capitalists. They are hateful, exploitative creatures that must be destroyed by demonization and indoctrination. The process has been going on for some time in the schools and in work place “sensitivity training” sessions.

This is the ideology of the Democrat Party. Imposed ideologies wear down facts. 

As the Native American tells the elderly woman in the Clint Eastwood film, The Outlaw Josey Wales, “Hell is coming to breakfast.” White people can expect hell.  To see this, all you have to do is to look at Biden’s Department of Justice appointments.

Americans are only now beginning to realize that the expensive educations they have paid for their children have resulted in their children being stolen from them. A friend told me recently that his son and son’s girlfriend had left their brutally lockdowned Democrat state to come to him in a Republican state where life still went on not too far from normal.  Having heard their conversations with him and among themselves, he has concluded that they regret that they were born white.  

To his dismay, he understands that their regret at having white skin is not because of employment and promotion quotas that limit their success as white people, or the demeaning racial training sessions they have to endue as “systemic white racists.” Their regret is due to their successful indoctrination that, as white racists, they are responsible for the lack of success of black Americans.  Perplexed, he asked me, “how can we resist the tyranny that is being imposed on us when the younger generation believes we are quilty and cannot be trusted with our freedoms.

Yes, good question.  How?

Note that the outpouring of support for Trump in the Washington Rally, which Democrats easily turned into a liability for Trump, consists largely of older adults.  Where were the young people?  They stayed home and ratted out their parents.

America’s young were not born into a free society. They have never experienced a free society. They are not socialized into a free society. They have no idea what one is beyond access to the Internet. 

It was two decades ago that the Bush regime orchestrated  the PATRIOT Act.  It was two decades ago that the Republican President of the United States threw habeas corpus out the window and claimed executive authority to detain American citizens indefinitely without presenting evidence before a court.  No bar association, no university law faculty, no court, no Congress, and certainly no presstitute media demanded Bush’s impeachment for unilaterally exercising unconstitutional executive authority.

During the subsequent Obama regime, America’s First Black President, who got less votes than Trump did in 2020, executed American citizens without due process of law.  No one demanded Obama’s impeachment for his unconstitutional and illegal murder of American citizens.

If cancelling the Bill of Rights isn’t insurrection, what is?

In contrast, President Trump who challenged the media monopoly for its censorship, who challenged the military/security complex for its orchestration of Russia as an enemy, who challenged various “trade agreements” for sending Americans’ middle class jobs abroad—in other words, a rare president who represented the American people—this President was destroyed by the Establishment and its media and intellectual whores.

The  corrupt and evil Establishment, acting through the Democrat Party with the backing of the monopoly over all communications and the monetary and power interests of the military/security complex and Wall Street, and strengthened by the Identity Politics hatreds, which extend into the universities, public schools, bar associations, corporations, and judiciary, and the indoctrination seminars that white males are forced to undergo, has achieved more power than Stalin and Hitler could imagine.  

Today the United States is not only a threat to its citizens but also a threat to the world.  The American Establishment’s belief in its hegemony makes the United States  the greatest threat that the world has ever experienced.  

The forces in control of the United States deny the existence of objective truth. As the Establishment defines truth, truth is what serves the agendas of the ruling elite.  

There is no other truth.  

Among other terrors, this means that an accused person can mount no defense.  As the trial of the surviving brother of the alleged Boston Marathon Bombing demonstrated, the proof of his innocence according to the FBI’s own evidence was not allowed to be introduced into the trial, only the fabricated “evidence” of his guilt.  When this happened, it was clear that the United States government regarded the rule of law as dispensable whenever it interferred with its agenda.

As journalist Ekaterina Blinova instantly recognized, the effect of the stolen election is to create one-party rule in the United States. Of course, the Democrats won’t rule. Rule will be by the interest groups for whom the Democrats will front. As the Republcans abandoned the American people and joined in the denunciation of the “insurrectionist Trump,” there are few voters left who will vote Republican. By its cowardice, the Republican Party has destroyed itself.

What can be done.  I am open to answers.  If you think about it, you wonder if Americans have the intelligence and awareness to survive.  Consider Parler, a social media alternative that does not censor.  Why did Parler think it could be independent when it was dependent on Apple, Amazon, and Google?  It must be a new high water mark of American insouciance that Parler executives thought the ruling Establishment would allow them free speech. https://www.cnn.com/2021/01/09/tech/parler-suspended-apple-app-store/index.html 

America is in collapse on all fronts—morally, economically, socially, politically, and militarily.  Every American institution is corrupted. America’s collapse will be a large collapse, and it will affect the entire world.

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The woke purge – spiked

Posted by M. C. on January 11, 2021

Twitter’s suspension of Donald Trump is a chilling sign of tyranny to come.

https://www.spiked-online.com/2021/01/09/the-woke-purge/

Cancel culture doesn’t exist, they say. And yet with the flick of a switch, billionaire capitalists voted for by precisely nobody have just silenced a man who is still the democratically elected president of the United States. With the push of a button in their vast temples to technology, the new capitalist oligarchs of Silicon Valley have prevented a man who won the second largest vote in the history of the American republic just two months ago — 74million votes — from engaging with his supporters (and critics) in the new public square of the internet age.

Not only does cancel culture exist — it is the means through which the powerful, unaccountable oligarchies of the internet era and their clueless cheerleaders in the liberal elites interfere in the democratic process and purge voices they disapprove of. That’s what Twitter’s permanent suspension of Donald Trump confirms.

The new capitalists’ cancellation of the democratically elected president of the United States is a very significant turning point in the politics and culture of the Western world. We underestimate the significance of this act of unilateral purging at our peril. It demonstrates that the greatest threat to freedom and democracy comes not from the oafs and hard-right clowns who stormed the Capitol this week, but from the technocratic elites who spy in the breaching of the Capitol an opportunity to consolidate their cultural power and their political dominance.

Twitter’s ban on Trump is extraordinary for many reasons. First, there’s the arrogance of it. Make no mistake: this is the bosses vs democracy; corporates vs the people; exceptionally wealthy and aloof elites determining which elected politicians may engage in online discussion, which is where most political and public debate takes place in the 21st century. Those who cannot see how concerning and sinister it is that a handful of Big Tech companies have secured a virtual monopoly over the social side of the internet, and are now exploiting their monopolistic power to dictate what political opinions it is acceptable to hold and express in these forums, urgently needs a wake-up call.

Secondly, there is Twitter’s deeply disturbing justification for why it suspended Trump. It says Trump’s account ran the ‘risk’ of ‘inciting violence’. And yet the two tweets of his that it cites do nothing of the sort. In one, Trump describes his voters as ‘great American patriots’ and insists they will have a ‘GIANT VOICE’ in the future. In the other he confirms that he will not be attending the inauguration of Joe Biden. That’s it. In what warped moral universe can such standard, boastful Trump-made statements be interpreted as calls for violence?

In the warped moral universe of pre-emptive, precautionary censorship being built by our tech overlords, that’s where. Strikingly, Twitter says its censorship of the president is based on how other people might read and interpret his words. It says its censorious motivation is ‘specifically’ the question of ‘how [Trump’s tweets] are being received and interpreted on and off Twitter’. Trump’s comments ‘must be read’ in the broader context of how certain statements ‘can be mobilised by different audiences’, Twitter decrees. So Trump’s words, strictly speaking, are not the problem; it’s the possibility, the risk, that someone, somewhere might interpret them in a particular way.

This sets a terrifying precedent for the internet age. It legitimises a new regime of online censorship which doesn’t only punish inflammatory speech — which would be bad enough — but which punishes normal, legitimate political speech on the grounds of how other, unnamed people or groups might respond to it.

There would be no end to what could be censored. Trans-sceptical feminists, already victims of Silicon Valley’s woke purges, would be completely wiped out on the basis that some idiot might interpret their intellectual, non-bigoted critiques of genderfluidity as an instruction to bash a trans person. Christians sceptical of gay marriage, pro-life campaigners furious about abortion, radical leftists who say ‘smash the system’ — all could potentially fall foul of this new diktat that says we are not only responsible for what we ourselves think and say, but also for the myriad interpretations that everyone else, from the man in the street to the weirdo incel, makes of what we think and say.

On this basis the White Album should be banned, given its songs ‘Helter Skelter’ and ‘Piggies’ were ‘mobilised by different audiences’ to terrible ends — the killings carried out by Charles Manson’s Family. Catcher in the Rye? Censor it. Don’t you remember how it ‘mobilised’ Mark David Chapman to kill John Lennon? As for the Bible, the Koran and any number of political texts and anthems — the risks of ‘mobilisation’ that they pose are clearly too great, so, to be on the safe side, let’s scrub those too.

It isn’t just Twitter. Mark Zuckerberg (zero votes) had already indefinitely suspended Trump (74million votes) from Facebook. Reddit has scrubbed its Donald Trump thread. All social-media accounts that promote the mad Qanon conspiracy theory are being suspended. Mike Flynn and Sidney Powell have been banished from Twitter. YouTube is now banning any video and account that says the American election was fraudulent. This shows how ideological Silicon Valley oligarchs have become. For four years leading members of the media and cultural elites in the US and the UK have said the American presidential election and the EU referendum of 2016 were frauds. That they were meddled with, illegitimate, should be overthrown. You’ll find tens of thousands of videos on YouTube featuring people saying the vote for Brexit was a fit-up by Ruskies or an ‘advisory’ vote fraudulently turned into an instructional one. They won’t be taken down. Because our tech overlords are engaged in acts of openly political censorship.

And then there’s Parler, the libertarian alternative to Twitter. Google this week removed the Parler app from its store on the basis that it doesn’t control its users’ inflammatory speech strictly enough. Apple is threatening to do likewise. All those who said ‘Just make your own social-media platform’ clearly underestimated the tyrannical determination of the woke elites to erase ‘offensive speech’ from every quarter of the internet. This is a full-on purge of any voice that significantly runs counter to the worldview of the anti-populist elites.

That the left is cheering this on is cretinism of the most remarkable kind. They are green-lighting the most thorough assault on freedom of speech that the capitalist elites have ever carried out. They are sanctioning the control of speech by billionaires. They are celebrating as corporate oligarchies interfere directly in the democratic process. They are making a fetish of private property rights, insisting that the corporate rights of virtual monopolies like Twitter and Facebook, in this case their right to throw people off their platforms, override the social, democratic good of free public debate.

I know this is unlikely anytime soon — given the entirely bullshit and pseudo ‘leftish’ posturing of the Silicon Valley elites — but imagine if at some point in the future the tech overlords decide that Bernie Sanders or some rabble-rousing organiser of protests outside Google’s HQ might ‘mobilise audiences’ to do something bad and decide to ban them? What will the left say? Nothing, presumably. Or nothing that should be taken seriously, given they will have helped to create this web of tyranny. They have forgotten the cry of the true radical Thomas Paine: ‘He that would make his own liberty secure must guard even his enemy from oppression; for if he violates this duty he establishes a precedent that will reach to himself.’

There is danger in the current moment. It comes not from horn-helmeted idiots and racist scumbags who paraded through the Capitol Building for an hour, but from those who wish to turn that despicable incident into the founding myth of a new era of woke authoritarianism. The business and political elites, determined to crush the populist experiment of recent years, will busily launch wars on ‘domestic terrorism’, clamp down on inflammatory speech, purge from the internet and from workplaces anyone with ‘incorrect’ thoughts, and blacklist those who believe populism is preferable to technocracy. They’re already doing it. The Biden administration isn’t even in power yet and this is already happening. Imagine how emboldened the new oligarchies and their woke mobs will become once Biden and Co are ruling. Brace yourselves; the purge is only beginning.

Brendan O’Neill is editor of spiked and host of the spiked podcast, The Brendan O’Neill Show. Subscribe to the podcast here. And find Brendan on Instagram: @burntoakboy

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EconomicPolicyJournal.com: In His First 100 Days, Biden Plans to Out Do All of Trump’s 2020 Mad Spending

Posted by M. C. on January 10, 2021

According to Axios, Biden wants to follow this up with a $3 trillion tax and infrastructure package.

Yes, give most Americans $1,400 (in addition to the $600 they are now receiving) and then tax the hell out of the “rich.” In addition to raising capital gains taxes for all.

This is what the Democratic control of both houses of Congress is going to bring.

https://www.economicpolicyjournal.com/2021/01/in-his-first-100-days-biden-plans-to.html

Joe Biden is considering asking Congress to give Americans the balance of the $2,000 per person coronavirus payments that was promoted by Trump, Axios reports. In addition, Biden wants to send funds to state and local governments to fill gaps in revenue that were created by governors and mayors that locked down their jurisdictions because of COVID-19.

Then, get this.

According to Axios, Biden wants to follow this up with a $3 trillion tax and infrastructure package.

Yes, give most Americans $1,400 (in addition to the $600 they are now receiving) and then tax the hell out of the “rich.” In addition to raising capital gains taxes for all.

This is what the Democratic control of both houses of Congress is going to bring.

Mitch as majority leader, though a crony himself, would have stopped a lot of this.

Needless to say, the spending Biden is proposing here is going to be much higher than what will be generated by any new taxes, so Jay Powell at the Federal Reserve better start ordering a lot more barrels of green ink.

RW

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JOHN KIRIAKOU: The Dark Past of Biden’s Nominee for National Intelligence Director – Consortiumnews

Posted by M. C. on January 1, 2021

There were three controversial areas where Haines made a name for herself and for which she should have to answer in a confirmation hearing: The CIA’s refusal to release the Senate Torture Report and the decision to hack into the Senate Intelligence Committee’s computer system; the CIA’s decision to not punish those officers who carried out the hack and who killed and tortured prisoners beyond even what the Justice Department said was permissible; and the government’s drone program, in which hundreds, perhaps thousands, of civilians were killed.

https://consortiumnews.com/2020/12/29/john-kiriakou-the-dark-past-of-bidens-nominee-for-national-intelligence-director/

By John Kiriakou
Special to Consortium News

Former acting CIA Director Mike Morell, who has disingenuously argued for years that he had nothing to do with the agency’s torture program, but who continued to defend it, has taken himself out of the running to be President-elect Joe Biden’s new CIA director.

The decision is a victory for the peace group Code Pink, which spearheaded the Stop Morell movement, and it’s a great thing for all Americans.  Now, though, we have to turn our attention to Biden’s nominee to be director of national intelligence (DNI), Avril Haines.

Haines is certainly qualified on paper to lead the Intelligence Community.  A longtime Biden aide, she has the president-elect’s confidence.  But that’s not good enough.  Haines is exactly the kind of person who shouldn’t be in a position of authority in intelligence.  She is the kind of neoliberal intelligence apologist whom so many of us have opposed for so many years.  Don’t just take my word for it, though.  Look at her record.

Haines first began working for Biden when she served as deputy general counsel of the Senate Foreign Relations Committee when Biden was its chairman.  When Biden became vice president in 2009, Haines moved to the State Department, where she was the assistant legal adviser for treaty affairs.  After only a year, she moved to the White House, where she became deputy assistant to the president and deputy counsel to the president for national security affairs, the National Security Council’s chief attorney.

Avril Haines, at center facing, with President Barack Obama at right, and other aides, July 13, 2015. (White House Flickr, Pete Souza)

That’s quite a position.  What it means was that her job was to legally justify President Barack Obama’s decisions on such intelligence issues as drone strikes and whether to release the CIA Torture Report.  She served there under CIA Director John Brennan.  Obama apparently liked the job she did for him because in 2013, he named Haines deputy director of the CIA (DD/CIA).

Haines was the first woman to be named DD/CIA, and she served again under Brennan, who proved time and again that he was no fan of congressional oversight.  Haines’s attitude was similar to Brennan’s:  The CIA was going to do what it was going to do, and she would make no apologies for it.

There were three controversial areas where Haines made a name for herself and for which she should have to answer in a confirmation hearing:  The CIA’s refusal to release the Senate Torture Report and the decision to hack into the Senate Intelligence Committee’s computer system; the CIA’s decision to not punish those officers who carried out the hack and who killed and tortured prisoners beyond even what the Justice Department said was permissible; and the government’s drone program, in which hundreds, perhaps thousands, of civilians were killed.

Drone “pilots” launch an MQ-1 Predator unmanned aerial vehicle for a raid in the Middle East. (U.S. military)

Haines’ Torture Cover-Up

You may recall that in December 2014, the Democratic staff of the Senate Foreign Relations Committee released a heavily redacted version of the executive summary of the committee’s torture report, the result of years of investigation using primary-source CIA documents.  The executive summary was about 525 pages long, just a fraction of the nearly 6,000-page complete report.  And the release of the 525 pages was the result of protracted negotiations between the committee and the CIA.

In the end, the public heard a few details of what the CIA’s prisoners underwent at secret prisons around the world.  But the full story was never made public.  It likely never will be.  And that’s thanks to Avril Haines.

Sen. Dianne Feinstein in 2010. (Steve Jurvetson, Flickr, CC BY 2.0, Wikimedia Commons) 

Earlier that year, then-Senate Intelligence Committee Chairman Dianne Feinstein took to the Senate floor in a very unusual display and accused CIA Director Brennan of spying on her committee’s staff members.  Specifically, Feinstein said that CIA officers had hacked into the Senate’s computers to see what it was that committee investigators were focusing on.

The hacking was unprecedented, and Feinstein referred it to the Justice Department for prosecution.  Attorney General Eric Holder, however, chose not to pursue the case.  Brennan took responsibility for ordering the hacking and he made no apologies for it.  But his top aide, his assistant, his legal adviser through the episode was Avril Haines.  She has never explained her decisions in support of the hack.

Furthermore, it was Haines who overruled the CIA’s inspector general and who decided not to punish those CIA officers who hacked into the committee’s computers, or those CIA officers who had gone over and above what the Justice Department had authorized in its “Enhanced Interrogation Techniques” program, killing and maiming prisoners.

In the end, not only were no CIA officers punished, but the leaders and most prominent officers in the torture program were promoted, in some cases into some of the most sought-after positions in the CIA.  I know this to be true.  I worked for them.

Haines and Drones

One area in which Haines has not received a great deal of media coverage has been her role in the drone program.  When Haines was the National Security Council’s top lawyer, Brennan was the keeper of the so-called kill list.  It was Haines who took phone calls in the middle of the night asking her for legal authority — permission — to launch missile attacks from drones.  She has never answered for her actions.

Now is the time for Americans to put down their collective foot on Biden’s national security appointees.  Morell was utterly inappropriate for a senior position in the Biden national security apparatus.  Haines is, too.  She has, very simply, committed crimes against humanity.  I’m under no illusions that Biden is a progressive or that he will differ greatly from previous Democratic presidents on national security.

But I do believe that wrong is wrong.  Avril Haines is exactly the kind of person we don’t want running the Intelligence Community.  This is the moment for opponents of her nomination to lobby senators on the Intelligence Committee. There’s still time to defeat her.

John Kiriakou is a former CIA counterterrorism officer and a former senior investigator with the Senate Foreign Relations Committee. John became the sixth whistleblower indicted by the Obama administration under the Espionage Act—a law designed to punish spies. He served 23 months in prison as a result of his attempts to oppose the Bush administration’s torture program.

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