Category Archives: Cronyism

A Change in the Weather, by Bretigne Shaffer

The dinosaur known as government is about to encounter an Ice Age. From Bretigne Shaffer at lewrockwell.com:

“May you live in interesting times…”
– Someone a long time ago in China

It was windy this morning. Little bunches of leaves on sticks litter the sidewalk. Too big to be twigs, too small to be branches. The tops of trees swish around in the sky above my mom’s qi gong class in the park, and I remember how surprised I was when I first visited China – 35 years ago now – and saw all the old people doing tai chi and qi gong in the parks, the families taking their one child out for walks, people just getting on with their lives rather than spending their every waking moment battling the tyrannical state as I had imagined they would.

“It’s so awful out there! How do you stand it?” I hear over and over again from friends who don’t live in California, from friends who left long ago. And yes, I guess it is awful. I guess… but that’s just not what I see.

I run into a friend who owns a local business, and immediately say to her “the pilots!” Her eyes light up, and we talk for a few minutes about everything that’s happening.

“This is such an exciting time to be alive!” My friend says.

“Yes!” I agree. We talk about this incredible moment in time, the unprecedented opportunity we have to change things. All the work that needs doing on so many different fronts, and how little time we have to get it all done. We both leave the conversation more energized and eager to get on with that work.

To be clear: I don’t celebrate anything that the Federal government, or the government of California, has done over these past two years. Their actions have been devastating to millions of people’s lives, and literally deadly for millions of others. Much of what they have done is criminal, and I in no way endorse any of it.

But there is a silver lining, and it is this: These governments, and many more around the world, have taken a torch to their own credibility, to their own legitimacy. Never again will any thinking person accept unquestioningly the pronouncements of “public health authorities.” Never again will they turn to CNN, the New York Times, the Washington Post, or any other mainstream media outlets as “trusted” sources of information. And more people than ever before are aware of just how broken the worlds of scientific research and centrally controlled medical systems are.

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When Are Secrets Not Secret? By Andrew P. Napolitano

“State Secret” is generally code for: This is going to embarrass the hell out of important people so we’re going to keep it buried. From Andrew P. Napolitano at lewrockwell.com:

“Three people can keep a secret if two of them are dead.”
— Benjamin Franklin (1706-1790)

Last week, President George W. Bush’s torture regime reared its head in an unusual argument before the U.S. Supreme Court.

In 2002, Abu Zubaydah was captured by a militia in Pakistan and handed over to the CIA, which brought him to Poland where, under the supervision of CIA agents and American psychologists, he was brutally tortured until his removal to the Guantanamo Bay Naval Base in Cuba in 2006.

The Bush administration argued that Zubaydah was a high-ranking member of al-Qaida who possessed information needed to fight the war on terror. After his torture produced no actionable information, the CIA told the Department of Justice and the Senate that Zubaydah was not a member of al-Qaida, and it had no evidence of wrongdoing by him.

His lawyers filed a criminal complaint with the European Court of Human Rights against the CIA, its psychologists and the Polish intelligence agents who carried out the torture.

That court concluded that the torture did occur, and it referred the matter to Polish prosecutors to proceed criminally against the defendants. During that criminal proceeding, Polish prosecutors asked the DOJ for the names of those who tortured Zubaydah and documentation of what they did to him.

In the Supreme Court last week, the government’s lawyer conceded that the names of the torturers and the nature of their grisly deeds are already known — the psychologists wrote a book about it — but the government will not confirm any of it because it constitutes state secrets.

So, if these so-called secrets are now publicly known, why does the government refuse to confirm them?

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A Global Fiat Currency: “One Ring to Rule Them All”, by Thorsten Polleit

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One for the Dark Lord on his dark throne

In the Land of Mordor where the Shadows lie.

One Ring to rule them all, One Ring to find them,

One Ring to bring them all, and in the darkness bind them.

In the Land of Mordor where the Shadows lie.

J.R.R. Tolkien, The Lord of the Rings

We’re fighting Sauron. From Thorsten Polleit at mises.org:

1.

Human history can be viewed from many angles. One of them is to see it as a struggle for power and domination, as a struggle for freedom and against oppression, as a struggle of good against evil.

That is how Karl Marx (1818–83) saw it, and Ludwig von Mises (1881–1973) judged similarly. Mises wrote:

The history of the West, from the age of the Greek Polis down to the present-day resistance to socialism, is essentially the history of the fight for liberty against the encroachments of the officeholders.1

But unlike Marx, Mises recognized that human history does not follow predetermined laws of societal development but ultimately depends on ideas that drive human action.

From Mises’s point of view, human history can be understood as a battle of good ideas against bad ideas.

Ideas are good if the actions they recommend bring results that are beneficial for everyone and lead the actors to their desired goals;

At the same time, good ideas are ethically justifiable, they apply to everyone, anytime and anywhere, and ensure that people who act upon them can survive.

On the other hand, bad ideas lead to actions that do not benefit everyone, that do not cause all actors to achieve their goals and/or are unethical.

Good ideas are, for example, people accepting “mine and yours”; or entering into exchange relationships with one another voluntarily. Bad ideas are coercion, deception, embezzlement, theft.

Evil ideas are very bad ideas, ideas through which whoever puts them into practice is consciously harming others. Evil ideas are, for example, physical attacks, murder, tyranny.

2.

With Lord of the Rings, J. J. R. Tolkien (1892–1973) wrote a literary monument about the epic battle between good and evil. His fantasy novel, published in 1954, was a worldwide success, not least because of the movie trilogy, released from 2001 to 2003.

What is Lord of the Rings about? In the First Age, the deeply evil Sauron—the demon, the hideous horror, the necromancer—had rings of power made by the elven forges.

Three Rings for the Elven-kings under the sky,

Seven for the Dwarf-lords in their halls of stone,

Nine for Mortal Men doomed to die,

One for the Dark Lord on his dark throne

In the Land of Mordor where the Shadows lie.

One Ring to rule them all, One Ring to find them,

One Ring to bring them all, and in the darkness bind them.

In the Land of Mordor where the Shadows lie.

But Sauron secretly forges an additional ring into which he pours all his darkness and cruelty, and this one ring, the master ring, rules all the other rings.

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A Message To Fauci: You Are In No Position To Dictate The “Greater Good”, by Brandon Smith

Who made Anthony Fauci king? From Brandon Smith at alt-market.com:

How does a fraud like Anthony Fauci find himself in the highest paid position in US bureaucracy? Well, Fauci’s career is a rather shocking testament to the reality of our government and our era – The more corrupt you are the more favors and promotions you will receive.

Fauci is well known as a shameless opportunist among many within the medical research community. For example, the creator of the Polymerase Chain Reaction (PCR) Test, Kary Mullis, had nothing but disdain for Fauci. Mullis was an interesting figure who valued scientific honesty above all else. He often warned that his PCR test could be exploited to inflate infection numbers by identifying remnants of a virus in a person’s body without distinguishing whether or not they are actually “infected” (sick). Sadly, his test is now being used in this exact manner today to exaggerate infection rates of the covid-19 virus.

In interviews Mullis has referred to Anthony Fauci as a “liar”, arguing that he is a bureaucrat that “doesn’t know anything about anything”. Mullis noted that people like Fauci have an agenda that is outside of the public good, and that they have no problem misrepresenting the science to the populace to achieve their goals. It should also be noted that YouTube has made it their mission to consistently erase any traces of the Mullis interviews mentioning Fauci from their website.

It is also not surprising that Fauci’s rampant fear mongering over AIDS in the 1980’s has gone mostly unmentioned by the mainstream media. His claim that 1 in 5 heterosexual Americans would be dead from AIDS by 1990 has been summarily memory-holed and the guy is treated like a scientific genius by the journalistic community in 2021.

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The Mark of the Beast, by James Howard Kunstler

The coming collapse will get rid of a lot of the present madness. From James Howard Kunstler at kunstler.com:

So, you’re feeling down and blue about the Woke Luciferian madness shading our American life under its baleful bat-wings? A lot of my friends and loved ones are down and blue. At this darkest of dark hours, I have some advice for you. Say ‘okay’ to whatever shade the universe is throwing on you. Rise! Go with it. Run with it and mount it. Ride it until you exhaust the beast that has made itself your enemy. Ride it until it goes to ground and whimpers. Because that is how it ends and you get your life back.

The frightful swans, black, white, and gray, are circling in the sky like those old air-traffic jams above the runways of O’Hare in bad weather. They are looking to land, and as they do, they will change everything. Enough people around the country will finally get their minds right. They will come back to themselves wondering… where have I been? This is what is coming at us (let’s count the ways):

The Covid-19 spell breaks. The beast thought it was a good idea to deprive millions of their livelihoods just to get its way and force them to submit to a medical experiment conceived in the utmost bad faith. You say your “vaccine” is defeating the plague that you schemed to create and beset the world with? We know exactly what you did. We know that most of the people getting sick now are the “vaccinated.” Look what happened in Israel. Too far to see? Look right here in Vermont. Your “vaccine” makes people sick. Soon, it will be self-evident everywhere that this “vaccine” is just another side of your boutique sickness.

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Never Having to Say You’re Sorry, by Karen J. Greenberg

If you have a psychopathic streak and literally want to get away with murder, enter government service. From Karen J. Greenberg at consortiumnews.com:

Karen J. Greenberg says the past two decades have seen no accountability for the lawless  U.S. policies of the war on terror.

U.S. Secretary of Defense Lloyd Austin delivers remarks during the Pentagon’s 20th memorial service for 9/11. (DoD, Jack Sanders)

The anniversary of the 9/11 attacks was marked by days of remembrances — for the courageous rescue workers of that moment, for the thousands murdered as the Twin Towers collapsed, for those who died in the Pentagon, or in Shanksville, Pennsylvania, fighting off the hijackers of the commercial jet they were in, as well as for those who fought in the forever wars that were America’s response to those al-Qaeda attacks.

For some, the memory of that horrific day included headshaking over the mistakes this country made in responding to it, mistakes we live with to this moment.

Among the more prominent heads being shaken over the wrongdoing that followed 9/11, and the failure to correct any of it, was that of Jane Harman, a Democrat from California, who was then in the House of Representatives. She would join all but one member of Congress — fellow California representative Barbara Lee — in voting for the remarkably vague Authorization for the Use of Force, or AUMF, which paved the way for the invasion of Afghanistan and so much else.

It would, in fact, put Congress in cold storage from then on, allowing the president to bypass it in deciding for years to come whom to attack and where, as long as he justified whatever he did by alluding to a distinctly imprecise term: terrorism.  So, too, Harman would vote for the Patriot Act, which would later be used to put in place massive warrantless surveillance policies, and then, a year later, for the Bush administration’s invasion of Iraq (based on the lie that Iraqi ruler Saddam Hussein possessed weapons of mass destruction).

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The Amen Corner Strikes Again, by Philip Giraldi

What the Israeli lobby wants, the Israeli lobby gets, and it makes no bones about pressing its case. From Philip Giraldi at unz.com:

Once upon a time the Israel Lobby destroyed critics of the Jewish state and its behavior by stealth. If a Congressman or Senator were speaking honestly about the lopsided relationship with Israel which required suppressing, it was done by making sure that individual was not reelected. This was normally accomplished by vetting an attractive opposition primary candidate who would do Israel’s bidding, funding him or her generously and providing unfavorable press coverage of the incumbent.

One great victory for Israel using that technique was the 1992 defeat of George H. W. Bush by Bill Clinton. Bush had dared to withhold guarantees on loans sought to fund Israel’s expansion of its settlements, clearly a genuine American interest as the settlements were a violation of international law. Going into the election, he appeared to be the much stronger candidate, but then the captive media starting to write about how the economy was in bad shape, which was not true, and switched over to deeply negative coverage of his campaign. The Lobby also heavily contributed financially to the Clinton campaign. George H.W. subsequently privately blamed the Israel Lobby for his defeat, a lesson his son George W. clearly absorbed in that he took pains to never anger Israel. He went rather the other way, surrounding himself with Jewish neocons as his national security policy team, which in turn produced Afghanistan and, quite plausibly, was the driving force behind the catastrophic attack on Iraq.

Legislators who have been dethroned by Israel using the same technique are Senators Chuck Percy and William Fulbright as well as congressmen Paul Findley, Pete McCloskey, Cynthia McKinney and James Traficant. They all faced credible, well-funded opponents and lost their seats. And the Israel Lobby, behind it all, never even had to complain about their views on Israel. In fact, it was believed to be better to not raise that issue directly.

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To Save America, Durham Must Reveal The Whole Russiagate Story And Punish The Guilty, by Roger Simon

The betting here is that John Durham’s investigation will end up being an exercise in damage control for the Democrats, but we’re willing to be wrong on that. From Roger Simon at The Epoch Times via zerohedge.com:

A bit more information has emerged from the John Durham investigation into Russiagate (or “Spygate,”as it is known hereabouts).

This is due to what is likely a leak from one or more of the targets to their loyal propagandists at CNN. (In the article, the reporters do their best to downgrade the scandal they fanned for years as no more than a trivial “dirty trick” that all campaigns do. There’s a well-known word for that adapted into the English language.)

The import of these leaks is usually to soften the impact on the target(s), but it also gives us another indication Durham is still active.

In this instance, more subpoenas have been issued, including some to Perkins Coie. That’s the Democratic National Committee’s and Hillary Clinton’s law firm that only a few weeks ago defenestrated—for reasons unspecified, but we can guess— one of Hillary’s principal lawyers, Mark Elias.

The other Clinton campaign lawyer, Michael Sussman, has already been charged with lying to the FBI on the matter of alleged Trump links to the Russian Alpha Bank, ties that turned out to be non-existent.

This time, however, we learned that “Tech Executive-1” in the Sussman indictment is Rodney Joffe, a rather distinguished cybersecurity expert, but not in this case because he was apparently involved with the same attempted deception.

Mr. Joffe was evidently no fan of Donald Trump. How far he took his enmity we shall see as this plays out.

Or we won’t. Therein lies the problem. Many are worried that Durham will only take the investigation so far and then peter out.

A real Russiagate investigation has myriad possible targets with very famous names, some of the most famous, in fact. Yet negativism about the results is everywhere in conservative circles with some justification.

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Could the CIA be behind the leak of the Pandora Papers, given their curious lack of focus on US nationals? by Kit Klarenberg

Or maybe there are just no bad Americans in positions of power. From Kit Klarenberg at rt.com:

Hailed as shedding new light on the global elite’s complex financial arrangements, the Pandora Papers pose many questions – not least where are the Americans? Are the authors unwilling to bite the hidden hand that fed them?

On October 3, the Washington, DC-based International Consortium of Investigative Journalists (ICIJ) announced the leak of almost three terabytes of incriminating data on the use of offshore financial arrangements by celebrities, fraudsters, drug dealers, royal family members, and religious leaders the world over.

The ICIJ led what it called “the world’s largest-ever journalistic collaboration,” involving over 600 journalists from 150 media outlets in 117 countries, to comb through the trove of 12 million documents, dubbed the ‘Pandora Papers’.

Among other things, the data reveals the use of tax and financial secrecy havens “to purchase real estate, yachts, jets and life insurance; their use to make investments and to move money between bank accounts; estate planning and other inheritance issues; and the avoidance of taxes through complex financial schemes.” Some documents are also said to be tied to “financial crimes, including money laundering.”

While the publication of articles related to the documents’ bombshell contents is only in its early stages, the Consortium promises that the records contain “an unprecedented amount of information on so-called beneficial owners of entities registered in the British Virgin Islands, Seychelles, Hong Kong, Belize, Panama, South Dakota and other secrecy jurisdictions,” with over 330 politicians and 130 Forbes billionaires named.

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Slowly, Then All at Once, by James Howard Kunstler

We’ve reached the inflection point of collapse. From James Howard Kunstler at kunstler.com:

You can start to wonder what, if anything, will be left standing of the life we once called “modern” when Christmas 2021 rolls around. Shopping? Motoring? Working? Mingling? Eating? Sleeping? Waking…? Suddenly, everything is coming apart.

The supply lines are wobbling and many will go down. No stuff, no parts, before long, no food. Energy supplies are shaky everywhere. China’s electric grid is going dark from insufficient coal. Russia lacks the surplus NatGas to keep Western Europe warm. Global shortages drive up US oil and gas prices while people lose jobs and incomes over vaccine mandates — meaning families will freeze as the daylight dwindles. “Joe Biden’s” dark winter is coming on fast.

Ol’ White Joe might be going soon, too, before his vaunted dark winter even arrives. Guess what’s on his schedule this Monday morning.  Answer: an airplane ride from Wilmington to Washington, some remarks at 11:15 about the debt ceiling, and then… nothing. Calling “a lid” on the day. The “president’s” mental mojo has sunk so low that his handlers won’t allow him to gab freely with the Democratic Party’s congressional caucus. They hustled him out of the room on Capitol Hill last week after he attempted a pep-talk to that posse in their deranged effort to pass a $3.5-trillion “social safety net” package that is just a giveaway to ward-heelers in “blue” cities.

But then, who can imagine Kamala Harris in the Oval Office? Surely not Kamala herself, who has been cringing out-of-sight for weeks as the situation worsens. No more trips to Texas to pretend to care about the foreign invasion at the Mexican border that she was assigned to manage. No more anything for Ms. Harris, except hunkering down in the old naval observatory in a paralysis of anxiety and nausea. Do they dare even letting her pretend to head the executive branch? Or does she just resign in tandem with Ol’ White Joe, propelling Nancy Pelosi into the job? That will light up our dark winter, won’t it?

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