Category Archives: Government

Italy Slouches Towards New Elections, by Tom Luongo

Italian politics are generally incomprehensible, even to Italians, but one trend is clear: a growing number of Italians no longer want to be under the EU’s thumb. From Tom Luongo at tomluongo.me:

Italy is always good political theater. I remember years ago when I cared more about poetry than politics, a friend of mine saying, “Tom, seriously, you’re missing out, Italian parliament is better than cable.” And in the early days of reality TV he was probably right.

That grand tradition of Italian government being closer to performance art rather than public policy continues today. I’m being somewhat facetious, certainly, since this game is deadly serious. Italy is a lynch pin to the grand dreams of The Davos Crowd for global social and economic dominance, so what happens there politically is vitally important to the world.

And given that the annual convocation of those would-be world rulers is happening right now in Davos, it is only fitting that changes are occurring in Italy’s ever fluid political landscape.

Since the collapse of the populist government in August when Lega’s Matteo Salvini tried to force a new election that he would win in a walk, the situation in Rome has been tense, to say the least.

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IMPEACHMENT WEEK: It’s OK To Be Bored; Not OK To Be White, by Ann Coulter

Musings on the impeachment farce and race from Ann Coulter at anncoulter.com:

It’s weeks like this that make me wish I had a job and didn’t have to stay home watching TV. With the impeachment nonsense dragging into its 56th month, I have some random observations, only a few of which have anything to do with impeachment.

1) As tempting as it must be for Republican senators to make a headlong rush to the TV cameras at the conclusion of the day’s festivities, they would be well advised to say this, and only this, each night:

Here are the vital issues the United States Congress did NOT address today:

— Repairing our highways, bridges and border with a major infrastructure bill.

— Ensuring that all Americans can get jobs by cutting off the deluge of cheap foreign labor.

— Providing the public with quality services by not inviting the rest of the world to come partake of government benefits meant for Americans.

— Fixing the disaster of Obamacare, so that all Americans have access to quality health care (by activating the same mechanisms that give them quality food, housing and iPhones: the free market, contract law and occasional government subsidies).

— Passing a bill to defund all the pointless, expensive military deployments around the globe, so we can FINALLY address the hellfires in our own hemisphere.

— Ending the opioid crisis by declaring war on Mexican drug cartels and building a wall.

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Trump’s Katyusha Conundrum, by William Walter Kay

Katyusha artillery rockets are playing a substantial but virtually unnoticed role in the Middle East. From William Walter Kay at antiwar.org:

Katyushas are short-range, unguided artillery rockets typically fired in salvos from truck-mounted launch-tubes. Iraq’s insurgents deploy three types.

The smallest is 107 millimeters in diameter and 1 meter long. Its 19 kilogram weight includes an 8 kg high-explosive, shrapnel-bearing warhead. The 107mm is often fired from a 12-tube launcher, however, infantry-portable single-tube tripods are common. An experienced crew with a standardized weapon can hit a 400 X 400 meter target from 8 kilometers away. During the Vietnam War the US Army considered the 107mm to be their adversaries’ most formidable weapon.

The 122mm ‘Grad’ Katyusha is 3 meters long and weighs 75 kg. Its warhead spans a third of its length and weighs 18 kg. It has a 20-kilometer range and a 30-meter lethal radius.

220mm Katyushas hurl 100 kg warheads 30 kilometers.

Katyushas have advantages over mortars. They deliver the same payload twice the distance and they fire multiple ordnance more rapidly. The globally ubiquitous BM-21 Grad fires forty 122mm rockets in three minutes. Reloading takes 10 minutes. Thus, Katyushas excel at “shoot-and-scoot” operations. As well, Katyushas’ flat trajectories permit line-of-sight attacks and their 700 meter-per-second velocities provide unique anti-building potential.

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On the 70th anniversary of Orwell’s death: The danger of third parties “curating” and “fact checking” our info, by Sharyl Attkisson

There are all sorts of official, semi-official, and private busybodies who want to protect us from “fake news.” We’re all just too stupid to sort through it on our own. From Sharyl Attkisson at sharylattkisson.com:

Political writer George Orwell, who died Jan. 21, 1950

It is a dangerous practice: Government, corporations, universities, news outlets and “experts” curating our information so that we cannot access, see or believe that which they determine we should not access, see or believe.

If anyone had suggested to Orwell, or the American founders, that we would invite this sort of manipulation and control of our information, they wouldn’t have believed it.

The idea was first introduced on the national stage by President Obama in October of 2016 right before the presidential election. He insisted that somebody needed to step in and “curate” our information in the “Wild, Wild West” internet environment.

Nobody had been clamoring for any such thing.

So the challenge for those who came up with this bright idea– in my opinion in an effort to control news and information– was to convince the public to accept something very un-American: their information being shaped and censored by others.

Watch Attkisson’s Tedx talk: Astroturf and Manipulation of Media Messages

This feat was accomplished in concert with the anti-fake news effort, started in September 2016 through a nonprofit called First Draft. (First Draft was funded by Google, owned by Alphabet, run by Eric Schmidt, a major Hillary Clinton funder and supporter.) The anti-fake news effort was also an effort by special interests to step in and control news and internet information.

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More Than 4 Times as Many Police Officers Killed Themselves Than Were Shot in 2019, by Matt Agorist

Police are under a lot of stress. From Matt Agorist at thefreethoughtproject.com:

In 2019, according to the Officer Down Memorial Page, 47 police officers were shot, 7 killed in a vehicular assault, and three died from assault. Another 77 cops died as a result of car crashes, heart attacks, and illnesses. Absent from the database of fallen officers, however, are the 228 cops who ended their own watch. This number is a giant leap from the year before and the fourth consecutive year that it’s risen.

As the number of officers killed in the line of duty decreased by 20%, the number of cops taking their own lives has increased 35%. The website Blue H.E.L.P. (Honor. Educate. Lead. Prevent.) has already recorded five officer suicides in 2020.

The mainstream media often portrays the unfortunate random killing of police officers as analogous to a larger “war on cops.” The reality is that there is a concerted public relations effort underway, on the part of law enforcement, with the intention of stemming the growing public calls for more oversight and accountability.

If law enforcement were genuine about wanting to save the lives of cops, they would begin by attempting to put focus on the out of control epidemic of police suicides, which dwarfs the number of cops fatally shot the line of duty. Cops are killing themselves at a rate 4 times higher than they are dying in the line of duty and this subject seems entirely taboo.

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“The 2-Child Policy Has Failed”: China’s Birth Rate Hits Record Low As Growth Slows, by Tyler Durden

At its present birth rate China cannot sustain the growth rates that have made it an economic powerhouse. From Tyler Durden at zerohedge.com:

China finally abandoned its controversial one-child policy in November 2013. But more than six years later, millions of Chinese couples are still unwilling to have a second child. And that’s a huge problem for the Communist Party, whose legitimacy in the eyes of the public depends on its ability to deliver on promises of unbridled growth and prosperity.

And who can blame them? Entrenched behaviors die hard, and after the government’s brutal treatment of citizens who defied its policy (which was initially imposed to ward off famine), we can sympathize with Chinese who simply believe that having two children isn’t in keeping with the fundamentals of patriotic socialism with Chinese characteristics.

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NJ Vaccine Bill To End Religious Exemptions Collapses: Is The Tide Turning? by Richard Enos

People are no longer accepting without question that vaccines are safe. According to this article, since 2004, there has not been one death from measles in the United States. In that same period, there have been at least 108 deaths from the measles vaccine, according to the government’s own reporting system. From Richard Enos at collective-evolution.com:

IN BRIEF

  • The Facts:A State Senate vote in Trenton, NJ on the removal of religious exemptions for childhood vaccines was derailed as a result of a boisterous protest by people who want to maintain the right to choose whether or not to vaccinate their children.
  • Reflect On:Are we seeing a watershed moment in the struggle between mandatory vaccination and people’s right to choose?

The battleground is now set. On one side are those who continue to claim “the science is settled” on vaccine safety and want to eliminate all vaccine exemptions, essentially forcing all children to get vaccines whether their parents agree or not. On the other side are those who believe that the science is far from settled, and believe that parents should have the right to choose what gets injected into their children’s bodies without fear of punishment.

The latest skirmish of this battle was on Monday in Trenton, NJ, where a bill proposing one of the nation’s broadest bans on religious exemptions to childhood vaccines did not have enough support in the Democrat-controlled State Senate to be put up for a vote. The bill would have ended a policy that allows parents in New Jersey to cite religious beliefs as the reason their children have not been immunized, without affecting the child’s ability to be enrolled in school.

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