~ July 4, 2022 ~
“Read a book, you might learn something.”
– New Left historian Carl Parrini to a generation of students at Northern Illinois University
“Fuck your fireworks, fuck your Court, fuck its decisions, and fuck your Fourth.”
– The author, somewhere in downtown Chicago, today
Thomas Jefferson’s Declaration of Independence (DOI) and the American “revolution” it signified should be taken with a ton of salt. The (DOI) articulated the revolutionary notion that “the people” have the right to dissolve a government that no longer serves their interests and the common good. But who were “the people” in the early U.S. republic? White male owners of substantive property holdings. This left out: Blacks, most of whom were branded and ruthlessly exploited as chattel slaves in the new republic; Native Americans, reviled as “savages” (more on who the real savages were below); women of all races; much of the white population, which was considered too poor to be trusted with citizenship (though they were welcome to give their lives to fight the British).
Silent Profits: Jefferson’s Nail Factory
Thomas Jefferson, whose face is carved into a South Dakota mountain stolen from the great Sioux Nation, is a chilling national icon. Henry Wiencek’s justly heralded volume, Master of the Mountain: Thomas Jefferson and His Slaves (2012), dug into previously overlooked evidence in Jefferson’s papers and new archaeological work at Jefferson’s Monticello site to discover Jefferson’s morally stunted, penny-pinching world. As one reviewer rightly notes:
La vida es corta, pero amplia. Life is short but wide.
– Spanish Proverb
In writing about my own experience in Vietnam, and reading about that of others, I have become aware that intensity of experience expands laterally in memory. The more lethal the experience, the more this is true. In the eighty-nine pages of Nothing Left to Drag Home, The Siege of Lao Bao During Operation Dewey Canyon II, as Written by an Artilleryman Who Survived It, by Garry Rafferty, I came away with the feeling that I’ve read a much larger book.
In 1971 Rafferty was assigned to a remote firebase along the Laotian border. His unit experienced a daily artillery duel with the enemy’s 152 mm guns that blew huge holes in their defenses and inflicted heavy casualties. Every battle was begun with the gut certainty of death. Their perimeter was constantly probed and resupply convoys were constantly ambushed. There is one episode of a literal wrestling match in a perimeter bunker between two NVA and American soldiers over a fifty caliber machine gun that had just been mounted there.
Along the Laotian border and in the DMZ US troops had to endure being pummeled by much larger weapons than further south, and the enemy had tanks. The medical results of this fighting were not pretty. There was one medic for a unit of eighty men and Rafferty finds himself often “helping doc.” Rafferty writes with a searing anger and devastating attention to detail. He recounts a Boschian scene during which someone’s pet dog runs by carrying a human arm in its teeth. He kills the dog in a rage. The next day the men get online to “police the area” which amounts to picking up pieces of people in empty sandbags.
How do dictators manage for decades to control 1.4 billion (China) or 146 million (Russia) people and on down to other smaller totalitarian regimes? Answer: one power hungry man at the top.
Political scientists have written about the various “pillars” sustaining autocratic regimes. Professor Christoph H. Stefes (University of Colorado Denver) focuses on the “pillars” legitimation, repression and co-optation – about which more later.
But just what are the mechanics flowing from the dictator’s throne that produce overwhelming compliance to the dictator’s demands? Starting with his “palace guards,” cooks, doctors, all the way down an intricate matrix of obedience to the cities/towns/villages level, the absence of any breaks in the links of the chains of oppression is remarkable. Even major suicidal sabotage at critical points in a regime’s iron grip rarely occurs.
Let’s start with the findings by anthropologists that all cultures have concentrations of power in very few hands whether in the political, economic or religious realms. Something in the scatter of human personalities entrenches the few ruling the many. The few deeply relish the power, wealth and status to which they apply great effort and energy while the many non-political inhabitants struggle to preserve their personal family lives, which dictators largely leave alone, especially when cultural norms provide private zones for work, family and progeny.
Idon’t believe we have ever experienced a Fourth of July holiday quite like this. Last year at this time, I was challenging the notion of patriotism if that patriotism motivates people to bury an uncomfortable past so as to secure their power over the present, and future. Such an exercise is perfectly in line with the basic concept of the holiday, as far as I am concerned: A recognition of the nation’s inception should always include meditations on how, and why, or if, that nation is changing.
This year, however, there are no meditations, but only the shocked and bleary thoughts of a car accident survivor seconds after the impact. So much has changed so jarringly, and not just because of COVID-19.
After White House aide Cassidy Hutchinson’s historic testimony before the 1/6 select committee, every conversation I had the next day began with “DID YOU SEE?” It was a breath of fresh air to be able to discuss real courage for a change, but Hutchinson’s performance could not obscure the fact that a president beyond control tried to turn a heavily armed mob on Congress to overthrow the election results. It could not obscure the better-than-average chance that same person could become president again in 2024.
A petition calling on the Democratic-controlled House to launch impeachment proceedings against Supreme Court Justice Clarence Thomas is on the verge of reaching one million signatures, an indication of growing public outrage over the right-wing judge's proximity to efforts to overturn the 2020 election and his role in the ongoing attack on constitutional freedoms.
The petition, posted to the website of progressive advocacy group MoveOn, currently has more than 989,000 signatures after a surge following the Supreme Court majority's ruling in Dobbs v. Jackson Women's Health Organization, which ended the constitutional right to abortion.
In his concurring opinion in Dobbs, Thomas plainly stated his desire to reconsider other landmark Supreme Court rulings, including those establishing marriage equality and the right to obtain contraception.
"Thomas—who sided with the majority on overturning Roe—made it clear what's next: to overturn high court rulings that establish gay rights and contraception rights," reads the petition. "And if that's not enough: Recently, Justice Clarence Thomas voted against a Supreme Court decision to compel the release of Donald Trump's records regarding the January 6 insurrection and attempt to overturn the results of the 2020 presidential election."
The Declaration of Independence begins with the famous words, crafted by Thomas Jefferson:
“We hold these truths to be self-evident, that all men are created equal, that they are endowed by their Creator with certain unalienable Rights, that among these are Life, Liberty and the pursuit of Happiness.–That to secure these rights, Governments are instituted among Men, deriving their just powers from the consent of the governed . . .”
Stephen Greenblatt argued in Swerve: How the World became Modern that Jefferson’s conception of the “pursuit of happiness” can be directly traced to Epicurean philosopher Lucretius’s De rerum natura (On the Nature of Things), a manuscript of which had been unearthed in the sixteenth century in a German monastery. Lucretius’ work begins with a paean to the goddess of beauty and love, Venus, who, he says inspires the very fecundity of spring itself.
The Trump Supreme Court self-evidently does not believe in these principles of liberty and pursuit of happiness, on which the United States was founded. The justices hold that we have no right to personal autonomy or bodily privacy and liberty, and that an alliance of Evangelicals and Catholics in state houses can legislate the most intimate details of our lives.
The justices draw on a scam called “originalism” to argue that the constitution now means what it meant to the framers in the 18th Century, which ought to make these originalists turn to professional, academic historians. They do not, and the naive historiography to which we have been treated by Samuel Alito and Clarence Thomas in recent weeks would earn any of my undergraduates an “F.”
Six Republicans on the Supreme Court just announced—a story that has largely flown under the nation's political radar—that they'll consider pre-rigging the presidential election of 2024.
Here's how one aspect of it could work out, if they go along with the GOP's arguments that will be before the Court this October:
It's November, 2024, and the presidential race between Biden and DeSantis has been tabulated by the states and called by the networks. Biden won 84,355,740 votes to DeSantis' 77,366,412, clearly carrying the popular vote.
But the popular vote isn't enough: George W. Bush lost to Al Gore by a half-million votes and Donald Trump lost to Hillary Clinton by 3 million votes but both ended up in the White House. What matters is the Electoral College vote, and that looks good for Biden, too.
As CNN is reporting, the outcome is a virtual clone of the 2020 election: Biden carries the same states he did that year and DeSantis gets all the Trump states. It's 306 to 232 in the Electoral College, a 74-vote Electoral College lead for Biden, at least as calculated by CNN and the rest of the media. Biden is heading to the White House for another 4 years.
Until the announcement comes out of Georgia. Although Biden won the popular vote in Georgia, their legislature decided it can overrule the popular vote and just awarded the state's 16 electoral votes to DeSantis instead of Biden.
An hour later we hear from five other states with Republican-controlled legislatures where Biden won the majority of the vote, just like he had in 2020: North Carolina (15 electoral votes), Wisconsin (10), Michigan (16), Pennsylvania (20) and Arizona (11).
Each has followed Georgia's lead and their legislatures have awarded their Electoral College votes—even though Biden won the popular vote in each state—to DeSantis.
Thus, a total of 88 Electoral College votes from those six states move from Biden to DeSantis, who's declared the winner and will be sworn in on January 20, 2025.
Wolf Blitzer announces that DeSantis has won the election, and people pour into the streets to protest. They're met with a hail of bullets as Republican-affiliated militias have been rehearsing for this exact moment and their allies among the police refuse to intervene.
After a few thousand people lay dead in the streets of two dozen cities, the police begin to round up the surviving "instigators," who are charged with seditious conspiracy for resisting the Republican legislatures of their states.
After he's sworn in on January 20th, President DeSantis points to the ongoing demonstrations, declares a permanent state of emergency, and suspends future elections, just as Trump had repeatedly told the world he planned for 2020.
Sound far fetched?
Renowned environmentalist and author Naomi Klein argued Thursday that over the past week, the United States experienced the early stages of a "rolling judicial coup" as the Supreme Court took a sledgehammer to abortion rights, gun control laws, and the federal government's authority to tackle greenhouse gas emissions that are fueling the global climate emergency.
"We have witnessed a shock-and-awe judicial coup," Klein wrote in a column for The Intercept, pointing also to the right-wing high court's decisions to weaken Indigenous sovereignty and further undermine the separation of church and state.
"And now this: a decision that eviscerates the Environmental Protection Agency's power to regulate a major source of the carbon emissions destabilizing our planet," wrote Klein, who for years has explored the ways in which reactionary political forces and corporations have taken advantage of crises to impose their will—a method she has dubbed "The Shock Doctrine."
West Virginia v. EPA marks a seismic win for such forces, which have spent decades coordinating and taking legal action against the federal government's regulatory authority, particularly when it comes to challenging the ability of corporations to pollute and degrade the environment as they please.
The Biden White House loves to use Vice President Kamala Harris as a human shield to take the flak for their failures. On Monday, her mission was to go on CNN and deliver the bad news that the administration would not squeeze Senate Democrats to get them to kill the filibuster with the goal of codifying abortion rights into federal law. “Right now, given the current composition of the Senate, the votes aren’t there,” Harris said, before reverting to the uninspiring message of voting more. She added, “The reality of it is, we don’t even get to really answer that, in terms of what happens or not, if we don’t have the numbers in the Senate.”
This was very much in keeping with the Biden White House’s lackluster approach to the Supreme Court’s historic decision in Dobbs v. Jackson Women’s Health Organization, which ended the constitutional right to reproductive freedom. As Reuters reported on Wednesday, “Biden and officials are concerned that more radical moves would be politically polarizing ahead of November’s midterm elections, undermine public trust in institutions like the Supreme Court or lack strong legal footing, sources inside and outside the White House say.”
The North Carolina Green Party's presumptive U.S. Senate nominee accused the state's Democratically-controlled Board of Elections of "a corrupt, lawless, and blatantly partisan attack on democracy" after it voted Thursday against certifying Green Party's petition for its candidates to appear on the November ballot.
"It's a slap in the face to the thousands of people who signed, to our grassroots organizers who worked tirelessly to collect thousands of signatures during an ongoing pandemic, and to everyone who believes in democracy itself," Matthew Hoh, a longtime anti-war activist, said in a statement.
All three Democratic members of the state election board voted against certification of the Green Party while the body's two Republicans voted in favor.
The board said after the vote that it opted "not to recognize the Green Party as an official political party in North Carolina" due to "an ongoing investigation into evidence of fraud and other irregularities in the petition process used to seek ballot access for the party."
The board acknowledged that the Green Party obtained more than the required 13,865 valid signatures for formal recognition, but it claimed that "several counties and state board staff identified numerous irregularities." Hoh said the Green Party received 15,953 verified signatures.
In a last-ditch effort to avoid extradition to the United States, lawyers for jailed WikiLeaks founder Julian Assange on Friday appealed to the United Kingdom's High Court to block the transfer.
"We also urge the Australian government to intervene immediately in the case to end this nightmare," Shipton said.
Supporters of Assange held protests ahead of his 51st birthday on Saturday, including one in an open-top double-decker London tour bus that passed by British government buildings in Westminster on Friday. One of the demonstrators, 79-year-old Gloria Wildman, told Agence France-Presse that Assange has "been in prison for telling the truth."
"If Julian Assange is not free, neither are we; none of us is free," she added.
For your reading pleasure Mondays and Fridays
Support this blog by visiting Jim’s Patreon Page
And thanks to all my Patrons for your support
The Party of Chaos is draping its narrow shoulders in black crepe this Fourth of July, putting on funereal airs, which is actually just another cynical act in their remorseless performance of pretending to care about our country, as everything they touch goes to shit, blood, and ruin. Anything not that, they would like you believe, is “right-wing extremism” and “domestic terrorism.” Such as reminding your fellow citizens that there’s an upside to the rule-of-law and free speech, two niceties of the constitution the Party of Chaos is working hard to dispose of.
Understand that this Party of Chaos is insane, and rejoice this holiday weekend that you are not them. Independence, after all, was not just throwing off the yoke of King George III, but of establishing conditions for a people to thrive and pursue happiness without nefarious interference by vicious authorities of a leviathan state. That was something worth fighting for in 1776 and worth fighting for now.
One such battle was decided this week in the US Supreme Court: West Virginia v EPA, about US government agencies under the executive branch usurping legislative and judicial prerogatives — in this case to enforce “Green New Deal” policies on the electric power industry by agency fiat, as if by law. No-can-do, the SCOTUS said in a 6-3 decision. The ruling will tend to quash the growing tyranny of the unelected federal bureaucracy issuing diktats that nobody has voted for, like the Department of Education’s increasingly insane use of the 1972 Title IX [nine] update of the Civil Rights Act of 1964 to jam biological male transsexuals into women’s sports and locker rooms.
Much of this agency mischief has emanated in recent years from whoever is in the White House issuing executive orders to get around a recalcitrant Congress. Barack Obama was especially prolific at it and now the junta behind “Joe Biden” is trying to emulate Mr. O. The upshot is that the Green New Deal is dead because even a Democratic majority Congress is too chicken to vote for measures likely to bring down the electric grid and put an end to mass motoring (though current trends suggest exactly that outcome is in the cards even without government action).
The ruling also tends to foil the World Economic Forum’s effort to re-set Western Civ as a transhuman technocratic “green” nirvana. Rather, the USA and Euroland are on the express track to a Palookaville of grubby, post-industrial, neo-medieval hardship. Try to imagine Mark Zuckerberg’s Metaverse minus reliable electric service. All you’re left with is an ill-dressed schmuck wearing goggles in a dark, empty room. Not to mention the technocrat elite’s wished-for boons of computer-enabled eternal life and never-ending orgasm. Fugettabowdit. Mr. Zuckerberg will be lucky months from now if he can avoid being clamped to a stake and torched by the angered new peasantry he helped to create.
War is not the glorious romp it used to be, either, in the days of caparisoned hussars and grenadiers in colorful enfilade. Now it’s more like being a swarm of gnats in a bug-zapper: pfffftttt… and you’re just one of ten thousand fellow gnats parlayed into the plane of ignominious nonexistence, sans accolades and salutes. Thus, our supremely stupid campaign against Russia in Ukraine, which is so not going well that it is hard to find a comparable strategic fiasco in history.
Of course, strategic fiascos are “Joe Biden’s” specialty. Even his former running mate, Mr. O, acknowledged that “you can’t overestimate [“JB’s”] ability to fuck things up.” The alleged current president wanted desperately to bog down his nemesis, Vlad Putin, in the Ukrainian buzzard flats, hoping that Russia would roll over and die. But, lo and behold, it’s not working, not even with that $50-billion “JB” supposedly wired to Kiev. Instead, it’s America and our NATO allies who are circling the drain. Remember all those humming factories we won the Second World War with? They don’t exist anymore. Try prosecuting an industrial war without any industry. Decreasingly, too, our oil production, thanks explicitly to “Joe Biden’s” policies. Next, he’ll beg Mr. Putin for a discount on Russian oil while threatening to punch him in the face. I hope you’re prepared to lose this one as badly as we lost Afghanistan.
Life for us will get simpler, for sure, but it doesn’t have to be a trip back to the eleventh century. Mere months remain before the Party of Chaos has its near-death experience at the polls and we can begin to contemplate a change of course that allows us to remain a civilized nation of law and liberty, despite all the damage done. I’m celebrating this Fourth of July by mindfully declaring the independence of the country I love from the regime of grifters, tyrants, and sadists temporarily occupying the power centers of Washington, DC. I hope you will join me and do likewise.
You might also enjoy another commentary, from JHK, in regard to the 4th:
~ July 3, 2022 ~
Imagine living in a country where armed soldiers crash through doors to arrest and imprison citizens merely for criticizing government officials.
Imagine that in this very same country, you’re watched all the time, and if you look even a little bit suspicious, the police stop and frisk you or pull you over to search you on the off chance you’re doing something illegal.
Keep in mind that if you have a firearm of any kind (or anything that resembled a firearm) while in this country, it may get you arrested and, in some circumstances, shot by police.
If you’re thinking this sounds like America today, you wouldn’t be far wrong.
However, the scenario described above took place more than 200 years ago, when American colonists suffered under Great Britain’s version of an early police state. It was only when the colonists finally got fed up with being silenced, censored, searched, frisked, threatened, and arrested that they finally revolted against the tyrant’s fetters.
No document better states their grievances than the Declaration of Independence, drafted by Thomas Jefferson.
A document seething with outrage over a government which had betrayed its citizens, the Declaration of Independence was signed on July 4, 1776, by 56 men who laid everything on the line, pledged it all—“our Lives, our Fortunes, and our sacred Honor”—because they believed in a radical idea: that all people are created to be free.
How much are you willing to sacrifice for “the future of the liberal world order”? As you will see below, the Biden administration is trying to convince us that supporting the “liberal world order” is far more important than any short-term economic pain that we are experiencing right now. So are you willing to pay ridiculously high gas prices for the foreseeable future and suffer through a very serious economic downturn in order to put pressure on Vladimir Putin and Russia? Some Americans would be willing to do that, but most would not.
On Friday, we learned that the U.S. economy is heading in the wrong direction a lot quicker than most of the “experts” had anticipated. The Atlanta Fed’s GDPNow model is currently projecting that economic growth for the second quarter of 2022 will be negative 2.1 percent…
The GDPNow model estimate for real GDP growth (seasonally adjusted annual rate) in the second quarter of 2022 is -2.1 percent on July 1, down from -1.0 percent on June 30. After this morning’s Manufacturing ISM Report On Business from the Institute for Supply Management and the construction report from the US Census Bureau, the nowcasts of second-quarter real personal consumption expenditures growth and real gross private domestic investment growth decreased from 1.7 percent and -13.2 percent, respectively, to 0.8 percent and -15.2 percent, respectively.
U.S. GDP growth was negative during the first quarter, and if U.S. GDP growth is negative again in the second quarter that will mean that we are already in a recession right now.
Since the creation of the US Federal Reserve over a century ago, every major financial market collapse has been deliberately triggered for political motives by the central bank. The situation is no different today, as clearly the US Fed is acting with its interest rate weapon to crash what is the greatest speculative financial bubble in human history, a bubble it created. Global crash events always begin on the periphery, such as with the 1931 Austrian Creditanstalt or the Lehman Bros. failure in September 2008. The June 15 decision by the Fed to impose the largest single rate hike in almost 30 years as financial markets are already in a meltdown, now guarantees a global depression and worse.
The extent of the “cheap credit” bubble that the Fed, the ECB and Bank of Japan have engineered with buying up of bonds and maintaining unprecedented near-zero or even negative interest rates for now 14 years, is beyond imagination. Financial media cover it over with daily nonsense reporting , while the world economy is being readied, not for so-called “stagflation” or recession. What is coming now in the coming months, barring a dramatic policy reversal, is the worst economic depression in history to date. Thank you, globalization and Davos.
SMALL TEAMS OF U.S. Special Operations forces are involved in a low-profile proxy war program on a far greater scale than previously known, according to exclusive documents and interviews with more than a dozen current and former government officials.
While The Intercept and other outlets have previously reported on the Pentagon’s use of the secretive 127e authority in multiple African countries, a new document obtained through the Freedom of Information Act offers the first official confirmation that at least 14 127e programs were also active in the greater Middle East and the Asia-Pacific region as recently as 2020. In total, between 2017 and 2020, U.S. commandos conducted at least 23 separate 127e programs across the world.
Separately, Joseph Votel, a retired four-star Army general who headed both Special Operations Command and Central Command, which oversees U.S. military efforts in the Middle East, confirmed the existence of previously unrevealed 127e “counterterrorism” efforts in Egypt, Lebanon, Syria, and Yemen.
Beijing criticized the North Atlantic Treaty Organization on Thursday after the U.S.-led military alliance asserted that China poses "serious challenges" to global stability.
NATO listed China as one of its priorities in the so-called 2022 Strategic Concept that leaders approved Wednesday at a summit in Madrid. This marked a first, as the alliance's previous blueprint, published in 2010, made no mention of the East Asian country.
According to NATO, Beijing's "coercive policies" threaten the Western bloc's "interests, security, and values."
Addressing the "systemic challenges posed by the People's Republic of China to Euro-Atlantic security" and the "deepening strategic partnership" between China and Russia is now a NATO priority, the bloc declared.
Beijing responded with indignation.
There is but one true thing to be said of a country whose highest court, from which there is no recourse and almost fully staffed by a fanatical majority appointed by two presidents who lost the popular vote, sweeps aside the hard-fought rights of half its residents in a day. There is one thing to be said of a country whose Congress permits the ongoing existence of the filibuster, a tool originally concocted to protect slave-owners that is now deployed daily to empower and continue the tyranny of the minority. There is one thing to say of a country whose Democratic Party leadership has become so ossified and bereft of ideas that all they can think to do after half that country lost their rights is to fundraise off the outrage.
The one true thing? That country is a living nightmare.
The White House has told Americans they must continue to endure crippling high gas prices in order to preserve the “liberal world order” and support Ukraine.
The comments were made by Biden advisor Brian Deese during a CNN interview when he was asked about the cost of living crisis.
“What do you say to those families that say, listen, we can’t afford to pay $4.85 a gallon for months, if not years?” the host asked Deese.
“This is about the future of the Liberal World Order and we have to stand firm,” Deese responded.
Countless Americans couldn’t care less about preserving the “liberal world order” in support of Ukraine, and would undoubtedly rather put America first.
Indeed, polls have shown that whenever they’re told the consequences of ‘supporting Ukraine’, appetite for American involvement plummets.
But that’s not the view of the president, who also said yesterday that Americans should suffer pain at the pump for “as long as it takes” because ‘Putin bad man’.
While President Joe Biden has halfheartedly scolded corporations for using inflation to reap record profits, he has done little but sit and watch as Congress fails to act on rising prices, instead leaving it to the Federal Reserve to deal with the issue — by declaring war on workers.
But the president has another option. His purportedly tough regulators — including Federal Trade Commission (FTC) Chairperson Lina Khan — could use their authority to investigate potential illegal price increases or limits on production.
When executives publicly proclaim plans to raise future prices or limit production, their comments could amount to illegal “invitations to collude” under federal antitrust laws — because announcing these future plans signals to competitors that they can make such moves in lockstep.
“These firms have now recognized that they can use inflation as a pretext to say, ‘Oh my god, our costs are going up, in the next quarter we are going to raise prices by 17 percent,’” said Hal Singer, a Georgetown University economics professor who focuses on antitrust issues and managing director at the litigation consulting firm Econ One. “And all their rivals are listening.”
The head of the United Nations just warned that we are heading into an “unprecedented global hunger crisis”, and people are already dropping dead of starvation in Africa. For months I have been documenting the signs that severe food shortages were on the way, and now they have begun. Of course there are many reasons why we are facing such a dire situation. Weather patterns have gone completely haywire all over the planet, the COVID pandemic has played havoc with global supply chains, and the war in Ukraine is greatly restricting the flow of agricultural resources out of one of the key breadbaskets in the entire world. Unfortunately, what we have experienced so far is just the tip of the iceberg.
On Friday, UN chief Antonio Guterres publicly warned that there will be an “unprecedented global hunger crisis”…
The world faces the prospect of a mass starvation “catastrophe” driven by unprecedented food shortages, U.N. chief Antonio Guterres warned Friday.
Guterres pointed to the conflict in Ukraine as exacerbating disruptions caused by “climate change, the coronavirus pandemic and inequality” to produce an “unprecedented global hunger crisis” already affecting hundreds of millions of people.
According to Google, “unprecedented” means “never done or known before”.
In other words, Guterres is saying that what we are heading into will be unlike anything that any of us have ever seen.
Last month, President Joe Biden nominated a longtime advocate of Social Security privatization and benefit cuts to a key board overseeing the Social Security system. The move comes as Republicans get ready to push cuts to Social Security and Medicare, if they end up winning control of Congress during the November’s midterms, as expected.
The development suggests that there could soon be a coordinated push in Washington to cut the Social Security program, which provides retirement, disability, and survivor benefits to 66 million Americans.
On May 13, Biden chose to nominate Andrew Biggs, a fellow at the right-wing American Enterprise Institute think tank, for a Republican seat on the bipartisan Social Security Advisory Board, which was created in 1994 to consult the president and Congress about the Social Security system.
For years, Biggs has been a vocal critic of expanded Social Security and workers’ right to a secure, stable retirement free from the vagaries of the stock market. He has dismissed the retirement crisis as a non-issue and as recently as 2020 blamed problems with the Social Security system on “older Americans’ game of chicken.” And two decades ago, Biggs worked on a Bush administration commission that pushed to privatize Social Security.
Amid all the high-profile rulings dominating the headlines, a more obscure but far-reaching decision slipped through the Supreme Court, even if it was barely part of the news cycle. It is the case that culminates Chief Justice John Roberts’ crusade to fully legalize corruption — and construct a political system that permanently produces all the extremist rulings now repealing the 20th century.
Cases like this new one, FEC v. Ted Cruz For Senate, don’t get much attention because they seem esoteric and technical. But so many of the more infamous legacies of the Roberts Court — crushing workers, rescinding reproductive rights, shielding big business from accountability, restricting voting rights, eviscerating gun control, complicating the fight against climate — can be traced back to its campaign finance rulings, which equate liberty with corruption.
That Roberts’ doctrine has given oligarchs, corporations, and their front groups a First Amendment right to bankroll political campaigns and now — thanks to the Cruz case — directly funnel cash to politicians’ personal bank accounts. The return on such investments has been all the right-wing laws, obstructions, and judicial edicts that have spewed forth from Washington over the last decade.
When an unelected conservative majority simply imposes the right’s policy preferences by fiat, there is little reason for the rest of us to respect the Court’s authority.
There has always been a certain amount of artifice in what Supreme Court justices do. Whether they are conservatives or liberals, they pretend that their personal moral and political values are irrelevant to their votes, and that they are just Following The Law. They delude themselves into thinking they are mere “umpires” who might have differing legal theories but are certainly not partisan. They try to get the public to accept this myth, because if we did think of the justices as mere “robed legislators,” there would be little reason to treat their decisions with deference and respect. It is necessary for the court’s legitimacy that the public not see its rulings as the mere imposition of certain partisan policy preferences by an unelected council who are only in their positions for arbitrary reasons (e.g., because of the timing of another justice’s death).
The Supreme Court on Friday overturned its landmark Roe v. Wade decision, invalidating federal protections for abortion rights. The decision will quickly limit reproductive health care access for tens of millions of people.
The decision, which is part of a barrage of devastating, precedent-setting Supreme Court rulings this term, surely has many Americans wondering how we arrived at such a dark moment. The answer is simple, even if it is rarely discussed in corporate media: It lies in a giant pile of anonymous cash that was deployed to buy Supreme Court seats, help determine justices’ caseload, and shape their decisions.
A secretive, well-financed dark money network has spent years working to build the Supreme Court’s radical conservative supermajority and bankrolling many of the politicians and organizations involved in the most controversial cases now before the court, including the abortion rights case decided Friday.
Over the past several decades, corporate lawyers, right-wing activists, Republican officials, and dark money groups with deep pockets have been laying the groundwork for a far-reaching legal assault on the federal government's ability to regulate U.S. industry—including the oil and gas sector threatening the planet.
On Thursday, their investments bore major fruit.
In a 6-3 decision along ideological lines, a Supreme Court packed with right-wing judges handpicked and boosted by some of the same forces leading the yearslong crusade against the power of regulatory agencies—which conservatives often dub the "administrative state"—dramatically restricted the Environmental Protection Agency's authority to rein in greenhouse gas pollution from power plants.
On its face, the ruling in West Virginia v. EPA appears limited in scope, pertaining to a specific section of the 1970 Clean Air Act and zeroing in on the reach of a single government agency.
But experts saw in the decision, authored by Chief Justice John Roberts, an ominous warning that the Supreme Court is ramping up its assault on the federal government's capacity to act on matters ranging from environmental protection to workplace safety to public health to consumer protection.
The US Supreme Court is a fascist organization.
Let me cut right to the chase to explain why.
This week the conservative majority (I won’t call them justices) overturned Roe v. Wade – the landmark 1973 decision that expanded access to abortion nationwide.
This is on top of decisions deeply wounding state’s rights to make gun regulations, to hold police civilly accountable for reading suspects their Miranda rights, and even the separation of Church and State in regard to public funding of parochial schools.
Let me be very clear—this is not about consistency based on legal precedent or interpretation of the law. It is ideology—pure and simple.
In the case of abortion, these four men and one woman did it because they wanted to. That’s all.
And they wanted to for a while now. They each lied to Congress during their confirmation hearings.
This month, the Supreme Court of the United States rescinded the constitutional right to abortion, made it easier to carry concealed guns in public places, and sharply limited the Environmental Protection Agency’s ability to regulate heat-trapping emissions from power plants. There is clear and copious scientific evidence showing that these rulings will put people’s lives and the health of our planet in danger.
My colleagues and I blogged about the West Virginia v. EPA case in February, when it was heard. As a climate expert, that’s within my wheelhouse and I wouldn’t typically weigh in publicly on abortion rights or gun violence. But watching SCOTUS make it more difficult to protect public health and safety, I feel an obligation as a scientist and advocate for science-based decision-making to use my platform and privilege to speak out. Here’s what the science shows about this month’s SCOTUS rulings.
Flint residents expressed disappointment and disgust after the Michigan Supreme Court on Tuesday determined former state officials were not indicted properly—yet again delaying accountability for the city's water crisis.
"This leaves no one criminally responsible for poisoning 100,000 people in one of the largest public health disasters in this nation's history," Flint Rising said in a statement Wednesday, adding that the group is "disgusted" by the 6-0 decision.
"It has been 2,986 days since the start of the Flint water crisis. Throughout the years, we've sent buses of Flint residents to our state and nation's capital, shared our stories, marched in the streets, and fought for reparations for our community," the group continued.
New research published Thursday by experts at the University of Colorado Boulder estimates that a nationwide abortion ban of the kind Republican lawmakers are intent on pursuing would increase maternal mortality in the United States by 24%.
Released just days after the U.S. Supreme Court ended the constitutional right to abortion—triggering total bans in a number of GOP-led states—the analysis uses newly available data from 2020 to show that the "increased exposure to the risks of pregnancy" caused by a federal abortion ban "would cause an increase of 210 maternal deaths per year (24% increase), from 861 to 1071."
The researchers stress that their estimate, which has not been peer-reviewed, is conservative—it only takes into account the higher mortality risk of continuing pregnancy to term.
"We find that increases in some states would be as great as 29%, while in others, because of already extremely low abortion rates and numbers, less than one additional death would be expected," they note. "Banning abortion will likely change maternal mortality in ways beyond exposing more people to the existing risks of maternal death; any increase in maternal mortality due to these changes would be in addition to our estimates."
The British home secretary has formally approved the extradition of WikiLeaks publisher Julian Assange to the United States, in the latest development in a dangerous and misguided criminal prosecution that has the potential to criminalize national security journalism in the United States.
Previously, a major coalition of civil liberties organizations, including Freedom of the Press Foundation, implored U.S. Attorney General Merrick Garland to drop the case against Assange in the name of protecting the rights of journalists everywhere. So, too, have the editors of major news outlets such as The New York Times and Washington Post.
By continuing to extradite Assange, the Biden DOJ is ignoring the dire warnings of virtually every major civil liberties and human rights organization in the country that the case will do irreparable damage to basic press freedom rights of U.S. reporters.
The prosecution, which includes 17 charges under the Espionage Act and one under the Computer Fraud and Abuse Act, covers events that took place more than a decade ago, but was brought only under the Trump administration — after the Obama Department of Justice reportedly considered charges but dismissed them for their dangerous First Amendment implications.
Stop Extradition of Julian Assange Now! explained that Julian Assange’s Extradition To US Formally Approved By UK Government reported on June 17 that,
“Julian Assange’s fate has been sealed as UK Home Secretary Priti Patel has formally approved his extradition to the United States, following a years-long legal saga in which the WikiLeaks founder’s legal team has pursued every avenue of the courts and appeal to fight the US request.
Held at London’s Belmarsh prison since his being taken out of the Ecuadoran embassy in April 2019, the 50-year-old Assange is now the closest he’s ever been to being handed over to American custody, where it’s expected he would face US legal proceedings and a likely conviction on multiple spying-related charges, eventually being sent to a federal supermax facility, specifically the ADX Florence Supermax. The Home Office has said in wake of Patel’s ruling that Assange has 14 days to appeal the decision.
It affirmed that the courts found that US extradition would not be ‘incompatible with his human rights’ and crucially that in US custody ‘he will be treated appropriately’ – this after the prior most successful legal challenge his defense mounted hinged on his facing cruel and possibly torturous conditions inside the US prison system, specifically the highly isolated life inside ADX Florence confinement.
Governments, corporations, and elites have always been fearful of the power of a free press, because it is capable of exposing their lies, destroying their carefully crafted images, and undermining their authority. In recent years, alternative journalism has been growing and more people are relying on social media platforms as sources of news and information. In response, the corporate state, digital conglomerates, and the mainstream media have been increasingly supportive of the silencing and censoring of alternative media outlets and voices that challenge the official narrative on most issues.
At the recent World Economic Forum meeting in Davos, Switzerland, “Australian eSafety commissioner” Julie Inman Grant stated that “freedom of speech is not the same thing as a free for all,” and that “we are going to need a recalibration of a whole range of human rights that are playing out online—from freedom of speech … to be free from online violence.” Meanwhile, the Canadian government is seeking to restrict independent media and the freedom of expression via the implementation of Bill C-11, which would allow it to regulate all online audiovisual platforms on the internet, including content on Spotify, Tik Tok, YouTube, and podcast clients.
“What do you do with someone with an allergy? What do you do with someone who’s immunocompromised, or someone who for religious reasons…or deep convictions, decided that no, they’re not going to get a vaccine? We’re not a country that makes vaccination mandatory.”~ Prime Minister Justin Trudeau, Brandon Gonez Show, May 9, 2021
In 1928, Sigmund Freud’s nephew Edward Bernays published a book titled Propaganda. Bernays emphasized in Propaganda that “The conscious and intelligent manipulation of the organized habits and opinions of the masses is an important element in a democratic society. Those who manipulate this unseen mechanism of society constitute an invisible government which is the true ruling power of our country” .
Bernays laid out a number of strategies when employing propaganda to achieve desired political objectives. We can look at these strategies as a way to reflect on the recent media propaganda about the truckers’ freedom convoy in Canada. The convoy became a thorn in the side of powerful establishment, elite interests, expressed especially in statements and actions of the Trudeau Liberals. The prime minister, numbers of cabinet ministers, and the legacy media got the convoy in their crosshairs. In 2022, politicians and the media gave Canadians a lesson on the real limits of democracy in Canada.
The one and only good I see coming out of the Covid Plandemic and catastrophic, quasi-mandatory vaccine policies, is that we’re seeing some Americans emerging as heroes during this dark time.
Many of us have long since known the names of key villains in our fight for the Republic and for liberty—people in the psychopathic billionaires’ club such as George Soros, Bill Gates, Klaus Schwab, Ted Turner, —and lesser, but equally destructive players, such as the Clintons, the Bushes, the Bidens, Pelosi, Newsom, Canada’s Trudeau, France’s Macron, etc.
But most of us likely had never heard of Dr. Scott Atlas, Dr. Lee Merrit, Dr. Jay Bhattacharya, Dr. John Ioannidis, or the U.K.’s former Pfizer VP, Dr. Michael Yeadon. Along with dozens of others, these men and women have risked their careers by taking a stand to save lives and speak the truth—which, in a time of universal deceit, as Orwell warned us, has become a revolutionary act.
The Knights Expose a Massive Criminal Conspiracy
But, lest we forget, I want to focus on a particular group of similarly remarkable men and women who, in January of this year, participated in a 5-hour hearing conducted by another hero who has taken a brave public stance: Senator Ron Johnson.
In Austria the massive harm done to human life and health done by the Covid “vaccines” has resulted in the Austrian Minister of Health shifting responsibility to doctors who betrayed their medical responsibility to inform patients of the risks of the vaccine.
Of course, had doctors done so, they would have been punished for “spreading misinformation.” It was the Austrian government that tried to mandate coercive vaccination of every Austrian.
In truth, the “Covid pandemic” was an exercise in massive disinformation by “health authorities,” aka marketing agents for Big Pharma, incompetent, mindless politicians, and a whore media that lied through its teeth and continues to do so.
Now that the Austrian Health Minister has shifted responsibility to medical doctors, how much longer can the utterly corrupt US “public health system” deny that there are massive “vaccine” injuries?
Here is the source. You can use Google to get a translation.
Pfizer is already swimming in record profits, but that hasn’t stopped the drug company from gouging the American taxpayer for every last dollar.
On Wednesday, the Biden Administration signed off on a new vaccine supply deal with Pfizer for $3.2 billion for 105 million COVID injections, but that’s only for the first batch of mRNA shots. The contract will generate well over $9 billion for Pfizer, as this latest purchase agreement tops off at 300 million doses. Compared to previous settlements with Pfizer, this public-private no-bid arrangement will come at a much higher cost to the U.S. taxpayer.
The Biden Administration has justified the deal by claiming that it needs to restock supply to prepare for seasonal spikes. The data does not support such a claim. According to the CDC, almost 100 million taxpayer-funded Pfizer shots (and 169 million total shots) have gone unused, resulting in billions of dollars in waste.
The new arrangement allows for the Biden Administration to buy Pfizer’s authorization-pending COVID injections, which the company claims is reformulated for newer variants.
Leaders of the member countries of the imperialist NATO military alliance concluded their annual summit in Madrid today. This summit was a clear display of NATO’s commitment to continuously fuel the fire of international conflict as the major capitalist powers drag the world back into a Cold War-style period of global confrontation.
In preparation for the summit, NATO members prepared a new “Strategic Concept” document that described the alliance’s key goals moving forward. The Strategic Concept’s principal target is Russia, which it labels “the most significant and direct threat” to NATO. Secretary-General Jens Stoltenberg promised even more support for Ukraine’s military in its war with Russia.
But the Strategic Concept also included a new and highly notable addition to NATO’s official enemies list: China.
The document labeled China a “systemic challenge.” While hostility to China has been NATO’s de facto approach for years, this announcement is a notable escalation. In essence, the NATO members are publicly announcing that China poses an existential threat to the world order that they dominate. China is pursuing a “no limits partnership” with Russia as it aims to fundamentally change the global political landscape such that the Pentagon and Wall Street no longer reign supreme. This is unacceptable to NATO.
Iran’s nuclear talks are back on track. There are not very high expectations though and some experts in fact believe that deal or no deal, an Iranian-Israeli future war is almost inevitable for a number of reasons.
For years, the Islamic Republic and the Jewish State have been waging a kind of shadow war – with no real dialogue or any advance towards reconciliation. In fact, one could very well argue that Tehran, on the one hand, and Tel Aviv and Washington, on the other, have been involved in a non-official war since the 1979 Iranian Revolution. Since the Israeli invasion of Lebanon, Tel Aviv has been confronting the Tehran backed Shiite organization known as Hezbollah and various other proxy wars have been fought.
For years, Israel and the United States have been playing a game in which the former threatens to attack Iranian nuclear sites, and the latter avoids opposing such an idea too much while at the same time signaling it would be an unnecessary and dangerous move it does not approve of at all. Sometimes, Washington also signs that it has the ability to prevent any Iranian counterattack in case Israel strikes. For example, in 2012 it blocked the Strait of Hormuz.
The United States supports its ally Israel and for years has denounced Iran as a “threat” to the Jewish state and the other nations in the area, especially Saudi Arabia. And yet Washington certainly fears that the Islamic Republic response to any Israeli attack would destabilize the entire region. The uncertainty factor also plays a role: no one really knows how advanced the Iranian nuclear program is. A fatwa (Islamic decree) stating that the Iranian Republic considers the use of nuclear weapons a sin is listed on Khamenei’s official website. It further states that Tehran supports the idea of a Middle East free of nuclear weapons. There is however intense debate in the country and a growing call for this fatwa to be reconsidered given the circumstances of today’s world.
“THERE IS NO place to hide,” said U.S. Attorney General Merrick Garland during a surprise trip to Ukraine this week, announcing that a veteran prosecutor known for hunting down Nazis would lead American efforts to investigate Russian war crimes. “We will pursue every avenue available to make sure that those who are responsible for these atrocities are held accountable,” he added.
Garland didn’t need to travel 4,600 miles in pursuit of war criminals. If he wanted to hold those responsible for atrocities accountable, he could have stayed home.
In a suburban Maryland neighborhood, just over an hour away from Garland’s office, I once interviewed a U.S. Army veteran who confessed to shooting, in Vietnam, an unarmed elderly man in 1968. He didn’t just tell me. He told military criminal investigators in the early 1970s but was never charged or court-martialed. He retired from the Army in 1988.
It is perhaps a wonder that it was not until experiencing the fallout from a global pandemic, that most Americans were forced to read or hear the words ‘supply chain’ or ‘logistics.’ Surprising both because it is on these things that the basic essentials of modern life are dependent and because of the revolutionary changes in these arenas over the past generation. Yet with COVID still haunting the global economy, as of this writing China is only just emerging from the largest COVID lockdown since Wuhan, and with inflation at the highest it’s been in decades, uncertainty about supply chains lingers.
Over the past twelve months this uncertainty has assumed many forms. There have been reports of shutdowns of factories in Asia, with workers reluctant to return to their jobs, ships backed up by the dozen at American ports, a shortage of truck drivers, and exploding wealth for the likes of Jeff Bezos. Obviously, the immediate trigger to the crisis would appear to be a mix of COVID and as a result Americans greatly increasing their online shopping. According to U.S. Census Bureau data, e-commerce sales jumped nearly 32 percent in 2020, and 50.5 percent since 2019.
I was outside the big iron fence surrounding the illegitimate Supreme Court when the ruling that ended women’s fifty-year constitutional right to an abortion was handed down by the Donald Trump-appointed Christian fascist majority on the most powerful judicial body in the world’s most powerful nation. It felt like when a loved one who has long been gravely ill finally dies. You know it’s coming, but it still hits you in the gut.
Two reporters asked me if I was surprised by the decision. Not at all, I said, no more than I was surprised by the January 6th Capitol Riot. Anyone who paid remotely close attention to Trump’s statements as president knew that he would never admit defeat and that he had no intention of permitting the peaceful transfer of power after he lost. The Trump Hall Putsch was both shocking and entirely predictable.
Anyone who has followed the Court since Trump and his party completed the Christian fascist takeover of the world’s most powerful judicial body with the appointment of an actual Handmaiden justice, Amy Coney- Barrett) right before the 2020 election knew that the reactionary ruling was coming. It was presaged in the Court’s decision to hear the Dobbs v. Jackson case in May of last year, in the oral arguments on Dobbs v. Jackson last December, and of course in the majority-backed draft decision that was leaked in early May. This moment was precisely the point behind the Trump party’s three high Court installations: Neal Gorsuch, Brett Kavanaugh, and Coney-Barrett. The woman-hating “instinctive fascist” Trump handed federal court appointments to fascist, arch-patriarchal theocrats as part of a deal that got him elected and helped keep him from being removed from power during his epically criminal and corrupt presidency.
Sen. Bernie Sanders on Thursday slammed oil companies for raking in huge profits on the backs of U.S. consumers and reiterated his case for a windfall tax, a demand that came as President Joe Biden's call for a federal gas tax holiday faced growing pushback from progressives and top officials in his own administration.
"Corporate greed is destroying this economy. Right now, people all over the country are paying $5, $6 for a gallon of gas," said Sanders (I-Vt.), the chair of the Senate Budget Committee. "Meanwhile, in the first quarter of this year, oil company profits were $93 billion, and they're going to spend $88 billion on dividends and stock buybacks for their wealthy stockholders."
"This is outrageous," he added. "Corporate profits soar, working people can't afford to fill up their gas tank. We need to pass a windfall profits tax now."
In March, Sanders led the introduction of a bill that would impose a 95% tax on the windfall profits of major companies, including oil giants that are taking advantage of Russia's war on Ukraine to hike prices and pad their bottom lines, helping to push inflation to a four-decade high. The Vermont senator has also signed onto a separate measure that would specifically target Big Oil with a new tax and use the resulting revenue to pay out quarterly rebates to U.S. households.
The global aid group Oxfam International slammed the G7 on Tuesday for failing to respond anywhere near adequately to a global food crisis that has pushed as many as 323 million people worldwide to the brink of starvation.
The wealthy Group of Seven countries—the United States, the United Kingdom, Canada, France, Germany, Italy, and Japan—acknowledged that staggering figure in a joint statement issued at the close of their latest summit but pledged just USD $4.5 billion in additional funds to fight the emergency, which Russia's war on Ukraine has exacerbated.
Max Lawson, the head of inequality policy at Oxfam, noted in a statement that "at least $28.5 billion more" is needed from the G7 to "finance food and agriculture investments to end hunger and fill the huge gap in U.N. humanitarian appeals."
FOR DECADES, Sen. Joe Manchin has presided over West Virginia’s Democratic Party, crowning candidates and throwing cushy appointments to allies while the state’s jobs, wages, and environment have gradually been ground to dust. But earlier this month, a grassroots slate of over 50 Democrats took control of the West Virginia Democratic Party after winning a majority of seats on the executive committee and ousting party leadership, thus ending Manchin’s de facto control of the state party apparatus.
Now, after a six-year organizing push, every old guard party apparatchik — save for the treasurer — is out of office, replaced with activists from across the Democratic spectrum set on revitalizing the state and forcing renewed support from the national party. The June 18 victories mark the beginning of the end for an era defined by atrophy, nose-diving voter rolls, and just a single Democratic statewide representative: Manchin.
The U.S. has decided that maximizing profit is more important than affordable food or gas for Americans. Meanwhile, President Biden could fix prices like Nixon did in 1971.
It looks like Joe Biden’s plan for dealing with inflation is to force millions of American workers into unemployment. This is not an exaggeration or a misrepresentation.
Recently, the president met with former Treasury secretary Larry Summers, who is publicly arguing that the U.S. needs a jobless rate of over 5 percent for five years to ease inflation.
“We need two years of 7.5% unemployment, or five years of 6% unemployment, or one year of 10% unemployment,” he explained in a speech in London.
Let’s put this into perspective. Just one month into the pandemic, America had a 14.7 percent unemployment rate—the worst since the Great Depression. During the Great Recession in 2009, unemployment hit 10 percent. Most of us are old enough to remember how very, very bad that was.
Los Angeles, CA — The mother of a Los Angeles police officer is coming forward this week alleging that her son 32-year-old officer Houston Tipping, was beaten to death by fellow cops during department training last month. Tipping was playing the role of a civilian and was beaten by fellow officers and suffered fatal head and neck injuries.
Shirley Huffman, Tipping’s mother filed a notice of claim against the city this month as part of a wrongful death lawsuit. Her son suffered a massive spinal cord injury during the event on May 26 and died three days later. He was buried last week.
Huffman stated in her lawsuit that the training exercise “had already been questioned” before her son was killed as other officers had previously suffered injuries during the training.
In a statement after Tipping’s death, police claimed that Tipping was injured while “grappling” with another officer in a tragic “accident.”
At the time of the accident Officer Tipping was a bike instructor engaged in a training scenario involving grappling with another officer. During the scenario Officer Tipping fell to the floor and suffered a catastrophic spinal cord injury. Officers immediately began CPR and summoned a LA Fire rescue who transported Officer Tipping to USCMC.
This is a point with which Huffman disagrees. Huffman alleged her son was “repeatedly struck in the head severely enough that he bled,” and that the beating resulted in injuries requiring stitches. He also suffered multiple breaks in his neck, which caused his death, the claim said, according to the LA Times.
Bradley Gage, an attorney for Huffman, said Tipping suffered injuries to two parts of his head and to four vertebrae.
“Chief Moore stated that Officer Tipping impressed his peers with a ‘willingness to go the extra mile to make the world a better place,’” her claim stated. “Yet, that wasn’t enough to avoid other officers paralyzing him and eventually killing him in violation of law, and his civil rights.”
As TFTP reported last month, the Uvalde shooter was able to fire off rounds outside the school building for 12 minutes, unobstructed and unchallenged by law enforcement before he entered the school and murdered children. He then entered the school where he was allowed to remain unhindered for 1 hour and 17 minutes before a tactical unit with Border Patrol showed up, disobeyed the order not to go in, and finally took him out.
Last week, a still shot from a surveillance camera inside Robb Elementary showed that Uvalde cops were well equipped to engage the shooter. At least one of the officers is seen with a bullet proof shield nearly an hour before police would enter the classroom.
As parents were thrown to the ground, tasered, and handcuffed outside the school for trying to save their children, heavily armed officers — with the proper gear to take out a shooter — were inside the school just 19 minutes after the gunman arrived.
They would not enter the classroom for another 58 minutes.
Angeli Gomez was one of these parents who was thrown to the ground and handcuffed, but she persisted nonetheless.
“The police were doing nothing,” said Gomez. “They [the police] were just standing outside the fence. They weren’t going in there or running anywhere.”
Gomez would convince one of the Uvalde police officers to uncuff her and she snuck away.
“Fact checkers” are demanding that YouTube censor more videos for “misinformation,” with one of the reasons being that no one is watching their content.
Well, this is awkward.
The censorship demand was made during the GlobalFact 9, a fact-checking conference organized by the International Fact-Checking Network (IFCN).
“As an international network of fact-checking organizations, we monitor how lies spread online — and every day, we see that YouTube is one of the major conduits of online disinformation and misinformation worldwide. This is a significant concern among our global fact-checking community,” the IFCN previously wrote in a letter to YouTube.
During the conference itself, Angie Drobnic Holan, editor-in-chief of PolitiFact, complained that fact-checker groups are struggling because no one is interested in watching their content.
“YouTube does not seem to raise accurate, credible information in its algorithms. We have had a lot of experience with YouTube making videos of fact-checking content. It doesn’t seem to do very well,” Holan.
“I think most news organizations are extremely frustrated with your platform,” she added.
In other words, no one cares about boring, hyper-partisan content put out by dubious “fact-checker” groups, therefore their more successful competition must be censored!
The idea of the Great Reset derives from the New World Order which is still alive in the minds of the establishment or who we can call the globalists from people like Henry Kissinger to the current US president, Joe Biden. Of course there are many others on the top levels of the pyramid whose ideas range from establishing a police state, to implanting microchips the day we are born to track and trace us, to depopulating the planet. I know it all sounds insane but that’s what the globalists have planned for us for a very long time.
Klaus Schwab’s protégé, Yuval Noah Harari, is an Israeli born intellectual who authored a popular bestseller titled ‘Sapiens: A Brief History of Humankind’ and is also a professor of history at the Hebrew University of Jerusalem. Harari once asked a disturbing question, “what to do with all these useless people?” Harari is an intelligent man, there is no doubt about that, but his intelligence has led him to the level of insanity.
Harari is an influential member of the World Economic Forum (WEF) who supports the idea of creating a dystopian society managed by a handful of globalists who will rule over every human being on earth from the day they are born. According to Harari, planet earth is overpopulated:
Again, I think the biggest question in maybe in economics and politics of the coming decades will be what to do with all these useless people? The problem is more boredom and how what to do with them and how will they find some sense of meaning in life, when they are basically meaningless, worthless?
My best guess, at present is a combination of drugs and computer games as a solution for [most]. It’s already happening…In under different titles, different headings you see more and more people spending more and more time or solving the inner problems with the drugs and computer games both legal drugs and illegal drugs…
They also want people to stay home connected to the Metaverse world, a virtual reality simulation and at the same time get them addicted to all sorts of drugs. The kind of world they are trying to create for us is pure lunacy. Wired, a monthly magazine describes the metaverses as a combination of the digital and physical worlds that creates a virtual reality as in the Hollywood film, ‘Ready Player One,’ The article ‘What is the Metaverse, Exactly?’ answers that question,
President Joe Biden and top subordinates have refused to publicly acknowledge the danger of nuclear war — even though it is now higher than at any other time in at least 60 years. Their silence is insidious and powerful, and their policy of denial makes grassroots activism all the more vital for human survival.
In the aftermath of the 1962 Cuban missile crisis, President John F. Kennedy was more candid. Speaking at American University, he said: “A single nuclear weapon contains almost 10 times the explosive force delivered by all the allied air forces in the Second World War.” Kennedy also noted, “The deadly poisons produced by a nuclear exchange would be carried by wind and water and soil and seed to the far corners of the globe and to generations yet unborn.” Finally, he added, “All we have built, all we have worked for, would be destroyed in the first 24 hours.”
Kennedy was no dove. He affirmed willingness to use nuclear weapons. But his speech offered some essential honesty about nuclear war — and the need to seriously negotiate with the Kremlin in the interests of averting planetary incineration — an approach sorely lacking from the United States government today.
According to a recent survey by Ichikowitz Family Foundation, African youth favor China’s involvement on the continent over that of the United States.
In an article from the VOA-Voice of America, China wins battle of perception among young Africans, they report:
“Seventy-seven percent of young Africans said China was the ‘foreign actor’ with the greatest impact on the continent, while giving the U.S. an influence rating of just 67%. In a follow-up question on whether that influence was positive or negative, 76% said China’s was positive, while 72% said the same of the U.S.
“By contrast, U.S. influence has dropped by 12% since 2020, according to the survey of more than 4,500 Africans 18 to 24 years old and living in 15 countries across Africa.”
One of the primary reasons for their choices is: “Beijing’s investments in infrastructure development on the continent and China’s creation of job opportunities in African countries.” (Emphasis added)
Ivor Ichikowitz said:
“Young Africans are telling us that they are seeing tangible, visible and very impactful signs of the role that China has played in the development of Africa.”
“Albeit that there is significant criticism of Chinese investment in Africa, it’s very difficult for African governments not to value China because China is providing capital, providing expertise, providing markets at a time when Europe and the United States are not.”
What was the last sin you committed?
The Bible describes “sin” as a transgression of the law of God (1 John 3:4) and rebellion against God (Deuteronomy 9:7; Joshua 1:18).
In the year 590, Pope Gregory the Great specified the seven deadly sins:
pride – an excessive belief in one’s own abilities;
envy – excessive jealousy for others’ traits, status or abilities;
anger – excessive fury or wrath;
gluttony – an excessive desire to consume more than that which one requires;
greed – an excessive desire for material wealth or gain, no matter the consequences;
sloth – excessive self-indulgence, laziness, a refusal to accept work discipline; and
lust – an excessive craving for the sexual pleasures of the body.
Traditionally, the seven deadly sins were divided into distinct categories:
Spiritual sins – pride, envy and anger.
Corporal Sins – gluttony, greed, sloth and lust.
When I was in my early 20s and naïve, and I would lament petty things to my mother, she would say, "Why don't you go back and live in Iran for two years, and then let me hear you complain." It was her attempt to tell me, harshly but lovingly, that we had it good because everything in America was better than the restrictions we had left behind in Iran, especially as women.
Growing up in Iran until the age of 10, it was already clear to me that women were not free to speak their minds, and that everything from the makeup on their faces to the clothing they wore was under constant and harsh scrutiny. Even as a little girl in elementary school, I had to follow strict rules: we were not to run in recess—it was deemed inappropriate for little women—we could not have long or painted fingernails, and of course under Islamic law, we had to cover our hair with headscarves and wear a uniform that did not bare an inch of skin. These were just a few of many rules that the school guardians had forced upon us.
It was a very different world for me in Iran, and even more so for adults. Dissent in Iran can easily have the consequence of imprisonment, and my family, specifically my mother, experienced that in her fight for Iranian liberation before my birth; she endured five years in prison. So one might imagine my mother's perspective in an America that promised her more than her birth country ever did in her 50 years. In a sense, America also provided her a cultural shift, an escape from her traditional upbringing that had led her to an early marriage and crushed her dream of going to college.
With its highways and suburbs, modern America was built around the automobile and powered by fossil fuels. The oil crises of the 1970s provided an opportunity to change course and move to renewable energy, but any momentum achieved then proved to be very short-lived.
If you lived in the suburbs in the 1970s, you can see it in your mind’s eye: driveway after driveway filled with Country Squires and Pontiac Safaris and Buick Estate Wagons. The Silvermans, for instance, with whom we shared a double-driveway in the Boston suburb of Lexington (“birthplace of American liberty”) and who, on a warm summer evening, would pile all the kids in back and all the adults in front and drive off two or three miles to Buttrick’s ice cream stand. When I say the kids piled in the back, I mean we crammed into the back cargo area — and, if memory serves correctly, on the back roads Mr. Silverman would actually lower the tailgate and let us dangle our legs over the back. Needless to say all of this would now get you arrested for child endangerment, but we loved it. Loved it without thinking about it, because the car was the absolute unquestioned reality of our lives.
Americans had, of course, been buying cars in big numbers since Henry Ford started up his assembly line in 1913, but until the end of World War II the numbers were not that big: in 1950 there were only 25 million cars registered in the country. That summer, over Lexington, a fleet of seven skywriting planes puffed out a gasoline advertisement in the sky: “New Blue Sunoco,” it said, day after day.
The Brazilian government published data Friday showing that more than 2,500 fire hotspots were recorded in the Amazon rainforest last month, the highest number for June since 2007 — one of the worst years ever for the critical ecosystem.
The latest report from Brazil’s National Institute for Space Research showed that the Brazilian Amazon has lost 1,450 square miles of jungle since the start of 2022.
Greenpeace Brazil said in response to the alarming figures that the far-right Bolsonaro government’s systematic rampage against basic environmental protections is responsible for the surge in rainforest fires and overall deforestation, which have helped transform parts of the Amazon — long known as a key carbon “sink” — into sources of planet-warming greenhouse gas.
Toledo, Ohio is breathing a sigh of relief after the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration announced on Thursday that the annual toxic algae bloom in Lake Erie’s western basin is forecast to be “smaller-than-average” compared to recent years. In 2014, an explosion of cyanobacteria sent officials scrambling and forced the water treatment plant to shut off the city’s tap water for three days. That wasn’t even the largest bloom on record in western Lake Erie. Levels of cyanobacteria in 2011 and 2015 were even higher, creating a thick layer of blue-green scum on the lake.
Cyanobacteria produces toxins that can harm the internal organs of humans and wildlife. Symptoms of exposure include headache, pain, dizziness, vomiting and diarrhea. The Great Lakes region enjoys one of the world’s largest supplies of fresh water, and residents were shocked by the water shutoff, not to mention the signs posted at beaches to warn swimmers the lake was poisonous. Local activists sprang into action, organizing a ballot initiative to save the lake.
America loves its military. It should because it’s the most expensive defense force of all time. $778B was allocated for defense spending in 2022. China comes in a distant second at $229B.
All of which prompts a provocative question: What if the Marine Corps publishes a landmark study that claims recipients of the US government defense budget are collectively responsible for accelerating the danger of climate change to very dangerous levels, in fact, to unlivable levels?
As of June 2022, that’s precisely what’s happened.
The world’s militaries, intelligence agencies, foreign affairs strategies, and think tanks are unwittingly advancing the hyperthreat, which is an acceleration of climate and environmental change leading to Hothouse Earth. This startling information is explained in detail in an eye-opening analysis in which hyperthreat is the primary subject, to wit: Plan E: A Grand Strategy for the Twenty-first Century Era of Entangled Security and Hyperthreats by Elizabeth G. Boulton, PhD, Publisher – Journal of Advanced Military Studies, Vol. 13, No. 1, 2022.
In the winter of 2001, the New York Committee for Occupational Safety and Health (NYCOSH)—an organization established by trade unionists and health and safety activists to promote the implementation of the 1970 Occupational Health and Safety Act (OSHA) in the workplace–visited the Village Voice to measure the electromagnetic fields in some of the work areas.
In 1979, Nancy Wertheimer and Ed Leeper’s groundbreaking study had found a compelling association between childhood cancer and the “electrical current configuration” of houses in Denver, Colorado–it was followed by other studies with similar results. In the succeeding decades, EMFs received a fair amount of media attention. Those directly concerned with the problem—such as public health advocates and residents of communities where children lived near power lines—complained no action was being taken. The utilities countered with ridicule and accusations of fearmongering.
In June of 2001, the International Agency for Research on Cancer (IARC), an agency of the World Health Organization (WHO), finally weighed in, classifying EMFs as “possibly carcinogenic” (a 2b hazard) on the basis of “limited” evidence concerning childhood leukemia. However, many experts were unhappy with this nebulous 2b classification and believed the available evidence warranted a stronger response.
Once again, the meaning of Independence Day in the United States is clear. The freedom we are told the Pentagon sends troops around the world to protect (which is a load of bullshit anyway) is again revealed to be mostly for men, especially white-skinned ones. Yeah, there are those women who will celebrate just as hard as the five men on the Supremacist Court will this 4th of July, but it’s the aforementioned men who will be raising their glasses the highest. In their toasts, they will note that women are finally being returned to their proper place; as handmaidens of their Lord Almighty and servants of the patriarchy. How dare they have the right to decide whether or not to bear children. Next thing you know, they’re wanting to be presidents and priests.
There’s a part of me that finds it almost impossible to believe that we are back to this situation in 2022, fifty years after the woman’s right to choose was decided. I remember reading jill johnston’s fascinating essays and the ads in the Village Voice placed by doctors providing abortion services when I lived in the Bronx in 1973 and 1974. However, when I look around the nation and recall its history since the Roe v. Wade decision was handed down, I’m actually more surprised it took so long to overturn it. After all, the return to the white capitalist paradise that was partially undone in the 1960s and early 1970s was already well underway by 1982, ten years after Roe v. Wade. Ronald Reagan and his band of troglodytes were making certain of that. They were setting the stage for the future to come. On top of that, there really weren’t too many laws protecting LGBTQ people on the books back then. By the end of the decade, Reagan and his crew of corrupt crackers were intentionally letting gay men die, as they denied and even fought the reality of the HIV-AIDS epidemic. Ronnie didn’t care. His god was on his side.
The Supreme Court is relentlessly funding and empowering Christian fascism. It not only overturned Roe v. Wade, ending a constitutional right to an abortion, but ruled on June 21 that Maine may not exclude religious schools from a state tuition program. It has ruled that a Montana state program to support private schools must include religious schools. It ruled that a 40-foot cross could remain on state property in suburban Maryland. It upheld the Trump administration regulation allowing employers to deny birth control coverage to female employees on religious grounds. It ruled that employment discrimination laws do not apply to teachers at religious schools. It ruled that a Catholic social services agency in Philadelphia could ignore city rules and refuse to screen same-sex couples applying to take in foster children. It neutered the 1965 Voting Rights Act. It watered down laws allowing workers to combat sexual and racial harassment in court. It reversed century-old campaign finance restrictions to permit corporations, private groups and oligarchs to spend unlimited funds on elections, a system of legalized bribery, in Citizens United v Federal Election Commission. It permitted states to opt out of the Affordable Care Act's Medicaid expansion. It undercut the ability of public sector unions to raise funds. It forced workers with legal grievances to submit their complaints to privatized arbitration boards. It ruled that states cannot restrict the right to carry concealed weapons in public. It ruled that suspects cannot sue police who neglect to read them their Miranda warnings and use their statements against them in court. Outlawing contraception, same-sex marriage and same-sex consensual relations are probably next. Only 25 percent of those polled say they have confidence in Supreme Court decisions.