Tag Archives: Great Britain

There’s powerful evidence this Great Panic is foolish, yet our freedom is still broken and our economy crippled, by Peter Hitchens

Someday the coranavirus will be gone, and so to will our freedom. From Peter Hitchens at dailymail.co.uk:

As I watched the Prime Minister order mass house arrest on Monday night, I felt revulsion, anger and grief – as anyone brought up when this was a free and well-governed country would. I also felt terribly alone.

You could not have known, from anything broadcast that night or printed the following day, that anyone was unhappy with these events. But they were.

So, above all things this week, I would like to thank all the kind, perplexed people who have got in touch with me by so many means, to say they share my doubts about the Government’s handling of Covid-19.

Many will have seen the films, pictured, taken by Derbyshire police drones, of lonely walkers on the remote, empty hills, publicly pillorying them for not obeying the regulations. It is genuinely hard to see what damage these walkers have done, writes PETER HITCHENS

Many will have seen the films, pictured, taken by Derbyshire police drones, of lonely walkers on the remote, empty hills, publicly pillorying them for not obeying the regulations. It is genuinely hard to see what damage these walkers have done, writes PETER HITCHENS

There are, in fact, many of us. If you feel this way, you are nothing like as solitary as you think.

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Coronavirus Crackdown – Beware “The New Normal”, by Kit Knightly

What the coronavirus panic is doing to our freedoms will not go away when the coronavirus does. From Kit Knightly at off-guardian.org:

So this is how Liberty dies… with thunderous applause.

A few days ago James Corbett posted a video titled “Is this THE big event?” the answer to that increasingly looks to be “yes”.

Not the virus itself, you understand, which official statistics still show to be minor compared to annual flu outbreaks. But rather, what it’s being used for. The West’s vestigial democratic forms, and slowly atrophying civil liberties are facing a final assault from draconian authoritarians sensing (or creating) their big moment.

Spain is enjoying “martial law in all but name”, while Italy is likewise bringing in the army.

In France, Macron has “declared war” on the coronavirus, essentially locking the entire country up inside their homes unless they have “a good reason” to leave. A reason which must be submitted in writing to the police.

Public gatherings are of course strictly forbidden. Elections are halted.

No word yet on what the Gilets Jaunes plan to do. There is a march – Act 71 – planned for today. Will it go head? If so, will they be met with more violence? Maybe. Only now instead of being ignored by the media they will be branded “selfish” for putting “members of the public at risk”.

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The Long Shadow of World War I and America’s War on Dissent, Parts 1 and 2, Danny Sjursen

World War I was not just an unnecessary war for the US, it also sparked a dramatic diminution of Americans’ civil liberties, setting some of the precedents used to justify later abominations, including the Patriot Act. From Danny Sjursen at antiwar.com:

Part 1

“War is the health of the state.” So said the eerily prescient and uncompromising antiwar radical Randolph Bourne in the very midst of what Europeans called the Great War, a nihilistic conflict that eventually consumed the lives of at least 9 million soldiers, including some 50,000 Americans. He meant, ultimately, that wars – especially foreign wars – inevitably increase the punitive and regulatory power of government. He opposed what Americans commonly term the First World War on those principled grounds. Though he’d soon die a premature death, Bourne had correctly predicted the violations of civil liberties, deceptive propaganda, suppression of immigrants, vigilantism, and press restriction that would result on the home front, even as tens of thousands of American boys were slaughtered in the trenches of France.

This, the war on the free press, free speech, and dissent more generally, is the true legacy of the American war in Europe (1917–18). More disturbing, in the wake of 9/11 and Washington’s two-decade-old wars for the Greater Middle East, the dark, twisted, underbelly of World War I’s legacy has again reared its ugly head. Bipartisan, interventionist presidential administrations – unilaterally tyrannical in foreign affairs – from George W. Bush to Barrack Obama to Donald Trump have sought mammoth expansions of executive power, suppressed civil liberties, trampled on the Constitution, and waged outright war on the press.

All this was done – in 1917 and today – in the name of “patriotism,” what Oscar Wilde (perhaps apocryphally) labeled the “virtue of the vicious.” World War I produced the repressive and now-infamous Espionage and Sedition Acts, along with brutal vigilante attacks on Germans and other immigrants. The 21st century’s endless wars have engendered the equally autocratic USA PATRIOT Act, and their own reinvigorated brand of anti-immigrant and anti-Muslim abuses. It is for this reason that a brief reflection on America’s troubled – and oft-forgotten – experience on the home front during the First World War is more relevant than ever.

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Syria – Turkey’s Bluff Is Called – Media Opposition Sources Run By British Intelligence, by Moon of Alabama

The official US-Great Britain narrative of Syria makes so little sense it could only have been written by intelligence agents. From Moon of Alabama at moonofalabma.org:

Russia has called Turkey’s bluff of a wide ranging attack on Syrian government forces. The Turkish president Recep Tayyip Erdogan will now have to find a way out of the Idleb trap he set himself in. His excellent Syria adventure is coming to an end.

Meanwhile we learn that the British military intelligence ran another large dis-information campaign that brought ‘Syrian voices’ into the ‘western’ press.

Erdogan continues with his wild rhetoric over Syria.

#ERDOGAN: “#Turkey cannot be confined within the 780,000 km2 border. #Misrata, #Aleppo, #Homs & #Hasaka are outside our actual borders, but they are within our emotional & physical limits, we will confront those who limit our history to only 90yrs.”

The Turkish talks with Russia have not gone well. Russia had proposed the following points:

1- 16-km border strip in Idlib under Turkey control
2- Russia controls crossing between Idlib strip and Afrin
3- M4 and M5 opened under joint Russian-Turkish supervision
4- Retreat of observation points to border strip

Some ten of Turkey’s observation points are currently surrounded by the Syrian army. If Turkey starts to escalate they will be in a dire situation.

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EU is Now Deaf to Their Coming Defeat, by Tom Luongo

Arrogant oblivion is not a good substitute for common sense and receptivity to other points of view, both of which the EU has lacked for many years. From Tom Luongo at tomluongo.me:

Yanis Varoufakis once described negotiating with the European Union like you’re singing the Swedish National Anthem. No matter what proposal you put in front of them, they acted like they didn’t understand and simply reiterated terms.

But, at least then they heard something. It may have been gibberish to them, but at least sound waves made it to their ears.

Today, these people are like overwhelmed autistic kids needing noise canceling headphones to blot out the unwanted stimuli. It may be therapeutic but it doesn’t solve the situation.

Now that Brexit is complete the EU has gone one step further, blocking out the very real strategic and tactical disadvantage they are in dealing with the United Kingdom in trade deal talks.

The arrogance and intractability of the EU when it comes to negotiations is supposed to be their biggest weapon. They project a strange combination of strength and indifference that can only come from people thoroughly insulated from personal accountability for their mistakes.

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UK Govt. Approves Net Censorship – Free Speech Dies, by Mark Angelides

One by one the nations of Europe are turning out the lights on civil liberties. From Mark Angelides at libertynation.com:

The United Kingdom has become the first Western nation to move ahead with large-scale censorship of the internet, effectively creating regulation that will limit freedom on the last frontier of digital liberty. In a move that has the nation reeling, Prime Minister Boris Johnson has unveiled rules that will punish internet companies with fines, and even imprisonment, if they fail to protect users from “harmful and illegal content.”

Boris Johnson

Couched in language that suggests this is being done to protect children from pedophiles and vulnerable people from cyberbullying, the proposals will place a massive burden on small companies. Further, they will ultimately make it impossible for those not of the pervasive politically correct ideology to produce and share content.

Quis Custodiet Ipsos Custodes

The new guardian of the internet will be the Office of Communications (known as Ofcom), a government-approved body that already regulates television, radio, broadcasting, and even the postal service. This group has been accused on many occasions of “acting as the moral arbiter” for the nation, and perhaps unsurprisingly, tends towards a very left-leaning position.

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Independence and its consequences, by Alasdair Macleod

Alasdair Macleod sees Britain’s future post-Brexit as bright, but there’s one huge danger. From Macleod at goldmoney.com:

Britain left the EU on the last day of January and is an independent nation once more. The new Johnson government is confident that Britain will do well outside the EU. Free trade will be embraced, and a no-deal outcome, now dubbed an Australian trade relationship, holds no fears for the British government.

This article summarises the political and economic consequences of this historic moment. The fly in the ointment is there is no sign that Britain’s government understands the importance of sound money, which will be crucial in the event a global economic and financial credit crisis materialises.

Independence and trade negotiations

Having given independence to all its colonies, now it’s Britain’s turn. On 1 February the UK became politically independent and entered an eleven-month transition period while trade terms with the EU and other trading nations are negotiated, with the objective of entering 2021 with freedom to trade without tariffs with as many nations as possible. If Britain succeeds in its initial objectives these trade agreements will include not only the EU but also America, Japan, South Korea, Canada, Australia, New Zealand, the other trans-Pacific Partnership nations and a host of sub-Saharan African nations in the Commonwealth. It amounts to about two-thirds of the world measured by nominal GDP, of which only 21% is with the EU.

Additionally, an analyst looking at market substitution must allow for the relative dynamism of economies. Britain’s trade in goods with the EU has been declining, and today represents about 45% of Britain’s exports, having slipped from 55% in 2006. Despite the penalty of WTO terms with nearly all of Britain’s other trading partners, British exports are gaining more traction in trade outside Fortress EU. The future is brighter elsewhere.

Furthermore, the EU’s trade covers physical goods affecting only 8% of Britain’s GDP, with services a separate issue negotiated on a case-by-case basis.[i]] Being predominantly wholesale, most trade in financial services is excluded (though the EU is trying to claim it is not), and those at the retail level are delivered through British-owned subsidiaries based in Luxembourg and Dublin. Attempts to force EU standards on British financial services have a long history of failure, and the most recent suggestion, that the EU will seek to maintain access to British fishing waters in exchange for continued access for financial services to the EU, is an empty bargain.

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