Are you as sick and tired as I am of all those tinfoil hat-wearing conspiracy nutters who express skepticism whenever the kind and beneficent US intelligence agencies bestow us with urgent information about a new country in need of regime change? Do you want to get rid of that kooky fringe 74 percent of Americans who believe in a “Deep State” which controls the elected government?
Well you’re in luck, bucko! I happen to have compiled right here a list of six simple steps that our compassionate government and fearless media can take to rid America of these looney toon paranoid conspiracy theorists once and for all:
1. Stop fucking lying all the time.
Simple, right? Just stop lying and people will stop wondering how the narrative they’re being spoon fed by their politicians and the media differs from reality!
End the practice of defense and intelligence agencies collaborating with think tanks and unelected insiders to manufacture false narratives which are then promulgated by pundits and politicians of both mainstream parties to advance imperialist agendas. What will Alex Jones and Sputnik talk about if the voices of power start telling the truth all of a sudden instead of lying about the justifications for imperialist wars, excluding and censoring skeptics of establishment orthodoxies from the mainstream conversation, and being forthright about the massive and ubiquitous problems in America’s democratic system?
That’ll show those crackpots!
2. Try some actual fucking government transparency.
That’s right! Add government transparency into the mix and what will hostile non-state intelligence operatives like Julian Assange have to publish? I say we drive the WikiLeaks fake news complex right out of business by eliminating the immense veil of secrecy which shrouds so many levels of US government. That way when those annoying conspiracy kooks try to say we’re not being given the full story about the behavior of America and its allies, our leaders can just tell them “Uh, yes we are actually” and show unredacted documentation of all their behaviors.
How do you like that, Russian WikiLeaks? We are the WikiLeaks now!
3. Stop fucking killing people.
Of course, it’s hard to be transparent when you’re conducting countless military operations all over the planet at any given moment, so we’ll probably have to stop that too. We don’t want to give away the secret plans and locations of America’s brave servicemen and women, after all. Dedicate the US military to defending America’s own shores and close down the hundreds of US military bases which dot the world like freckles on a Scotsman, and the next time those paranoid conspiracy freaks start questioning what they’re being told they can just be shown the truth.
Not as much fun as drone bombing children, I’ll admit, but if we want to get serious about this conspiracy theory epidemic we’ve got to start somewhere.
4. Stop promoting fucking conspiracy theories.
I don’t like to be a Debbie downer, but when we’ve got news stories coming out every few days promoting theories about the US president conspiring with the Russian government, it gets a little difficult to tell people not to indulge in conspiracy theories. Unproven claims about powerful people conspiring together is the exact thing that a conspiracy theory is, and while I understand that these are authorized conspiracy theories, we can’t rely on these crazy loons to understand the distinction.
Better to lead by example and avoid trafficking in conspiracy theories altogether, in my opinion.
5. Stop being such fucking assholes.
If US intelligence agencies weren’t torturing people, they wouldn’t have to lie about torturing. If US intelligence agencies weren’t surveilling US citizens, they wouldn’t have to lie about their surveillance programs. If US intelligence agencies weren’t constantly committing horrific atrocities to protect the interests of the powerful from the powerless, everyone would trust them and you’d stop seeing all these ridiculous conspiracy theories about what those agencies have been up to.
Call me crazy, but I’ve got this wild notion that maybe if highly secretive defense and intelligence agencies weren’t inflicting unspeakable acts of depravity and degradation upon humanity all the time from behind the veil of government opacity, humanity would be less paranoid about them.
6. Maybe try some fucking democracy for once.
People are beginning to notice that no matter who they vote for they get the same exploitative neoliberal policies at home and the same murderous neoconservative policies abroad, which doesn’t do much to dispel those wacky notions about a permanent unelected government pulling the strings while the official elected government puts on a pretend democracy show every few years. It would probably be a good idea to do something about how America has the worst electoral system in the western world, how ordinary Americans have virtually no influence over US policy or behavior compared to wealthy Americans, and the way the rigidly-enforced two-party system necessarily creates an extortion scheme where both parties serve the same plutocratic interests but bully Americans into supporting one or the other under the threat of losing civil liberties.
And again, I hate to be a wet blanket, but those defense and intelligence agencies technically are unelected and technically do wield an immense amount of power, and technically do have an immense amount of influence over Washington, Wall Street, Silicon Valley, Hollywood, the mainstream media, big oil, plutocratic interests, US allies, world trade, and countless major world events. By restoring power to the people instead of leaving it all in the hands of an elite class of secretive agencies and their plutocratic allies, people might feel like they have a bit more control over what’s going on in their country and won’t have to make up nonsensical stories about a “deep state”.
If we could pull these steps off, what will these conspiracy-mongering grifters have to sell to the naive populace? If everyone trusts their government and feels confident in the democratic process, who will believe stories about powerful unelected forces ruling over them?
You certainly wouldn’t have 74 percent of them subscribing to this absurd “deep state” conspiracy theory, that’s for sure.
Colonel Lawrence Wilkerson, speaking at a Ron Paul Institute conference this past weekend, predicted US troops would remain in Afghanistan another 50 years — just as they have in Germany and Korea. He also termed the ongoing US-backed campaign in Yemen the “most brutal war on earth,” a war western media overwhelming ignore.
Colonel Douglas Macgregor at the same conference called Washington DC “the place where good ideas go to die.” His years at the Pentagon, coupled with his experience leading US forces into Iraq during the first Gulf War, caused him to question the DC War Party in the most profound ways. Visiting the parents of an America soldier incinerated in a tank during that foray into Iraq, a foray with few US casualties otherwise, caused him to question not only his own missions but also the larger mission of US armed forces.
Both of these men now pose the same question: what is the goal? Why do seemingly endless military conflicts persist, despite lacking any constituency for their prosecution beyond the DC beltway? And why does US military strategy appear incoherent and counterproductive, when viewed through the lens of peace? Why can’t we do anything about this, no matter whom we elect and no matter how much war fatigue resides in the American public?
The answer is not found in a facile denunciation of the military industrial complex or war profiteers, though both are very serious problems. The answer lies in understanding how the DC War Party operates. Its goals are not ours. It is not democratic; the government is not “us.” It is not political; its architects are permanent fixtures who do not come and go with presidential administrations. It is not accountable; budgeting is nonexistent and gross failures only beget greater funding. It is above all not “economic” — it operates in an artificial “market,” one created and perpetuated by wars and interventions ordinary people don’t want. War socialism, or what former Congressman Barney Frank brilliantly termed “military Keynesianism,” has taken on a life of its own.
Ludwig von Mises saw peace as the key to any liberal economic program, and argued strenuously against the fallacy of war prosperity. Even early in his career, before his horrific experiences as an officer in the Austro-Hungarian Army during World War I, he recognized the critical distinction between economy and war: the former characterized by exchange and cooperation, the latter marked by the worst form of state intervention:
Only one thing can conquer war — that liberal attitude which can see nothing in war but destruction and annihilation, and which can never wish to bring about a war, because it regards war as injurious even to the victors.
For Mises, war was worse than zero-sum. Even the prevailing party suffers, just as the shopkeeper suffers in Bastiat’s “Parable of the Broken Window.” The glazier’s profit does not benefit society, just as the War Party’s success in breaking other countries does not. But the loss is not only economic, it is also cultural and moral. War, the ultimate rejection of reason as a means of navigating human society, reduces our capacity for compassion and makes us complacent about atrocities. Worst of all, it emboldens and strengthens the domestic state — encouraging us to accept absurdities like TSA theater and heavily militarized SWAT teams operating in peaceful small towns.
While US troops remain mired throughout the Middle East, a subsurface political war heats up in the US. This cold civil war creates the kind of hyper-politicized society progressives once only dreamed of. Social media outlets encourage even the most ill-informed and ill-intentioned voices to spread hatred against those with differing views. Goodwill doesn’t translate, so fake bravado hidden behind anonymity or distance are the order of the day. Epithets like “racist,” fascist,” “Nazi” and worse become cheap currency in the new vocabulary of meaningless words. Dissenting voices lose jobs, reputations, and access to popular platforms. Mobs form to attack political opponents in restaurants and shops, shout down campus events, and threaten online disclosure of their perceived enemies’ personal information.
Meanwhile overt socialists like Elizabeth Warren, Bernie Sanders, Keith Ellison, and Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez lead the Democratic Party to demand government health schemes, guaranteed incomes, and “people’s” ownership of corporations. The statist house organ known as the Washington Post calls for the word “socialism” to be “reclaimed” and viewed in positive terms. Ostensible conservatives like William Kristol, Max Boot, and Lindsey Graham follow suit and utterly divorce themselves from any notion of judicious government. They call for the destruction of Iran, escalation of tensions with nuclear-armed Russia, and belligerence toward China and North Korea. Donald Trump, despite some initial antiwar instincts, hunkers down with twitter while surrounding himself with rabidly interventionist advisers like John Bolton.
What can this environment yield other than a rapidly coarsening society and the increasing potential for outright war between nuclear nations?
Just as civilization cannot be divorced from civility in our personal comportment, economics cannot be divorced from war. The most important and immediate action we can take is to expose the gross economic fallacies of our day. The hawkishness of neoconservatives and the “democratic socialism” of progressives both lead in the same direction, toward economic destruction and war. If you think American society is polarized and prone to lashing out abroad now, what happens with a shrinking economy and 40% unemployment?
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The mainstream media and out-of-touch politicians and bureaucrats want us to believe that the Cold War never ended, it’s a crime to talk with a Russian, and we should all be fearful of any Russians here in the U.S. Apparently our $21 trillion national debt, lack of border security, and the threat of radical Islamic terrorism pale in comparison to the grave threat posed by Russia.
This is yet another example of the disconnect between Beltway talking heads and the American people. Hard-working Americans — including constituents in my Kentucky district — care about jobs, paying the bills, putting food on the table, and leaving this country a better place for their children. The alleged “vast Russian conspiracy” harped upon by the Democrats and media since the election of President Trump is simply not a concern of normal Americans.
To date, “proof” of a Russian conspiracy to interfere in U.S. elections includes only Special Counsel Robert Mueller’s indictments of 13 Russian nationals and 12 Russian intelligence officers. The Russian nationals are accused of identity theft that allowed them to create fake social media accounts, and the 12 Russian intelligence officers are alleged to have hacked into the computers of the Democratic National Committee and Hillary Clinton’s campaign prior to the 2016 election. Most importantly, all indictments fail to allege that a single U.S. vote was changed.
Unfortunately, what began as only Russophobic rhetoric seems to have turned into a witch hunt, as President Trump calls it.
For example, the current hysteria may have motivated the recent arrest and indictment of Maria Butina, a former Russian graduate student at American University in Washington, D.C. Unlike many accused of violent crimes, Butina (who has not been accused of harming anyone) was denied bail, and is now reportedly being held in solitary confinement in federal prison until her trial. The indictment claims she acted as an unregistered agent of the Russian government. Thin on substance, it oddly suggests, for example, that attendance at a National Prayer Breakfast is something nefarious.
My colleague Dana Rohrabacher and I met with the Russian delegation that attended the prayer breakfast last year. Congressman Rohrabacher, a former speechwriter for President Reagan during the Cold War, was once on the front lines with the mujahedeen when they fought the Soviets, yet even he now faces criticism for seeking better relations with Russia.
While our justice system has always upheld the presumption of “innocent until proven guilty,” the relentless negative press surrounding Butina’s arrest presumes her guilt. So far, the evidence mostly shows that she is simply a strong supporter of the right to bear arms, has advocated for this right in Russia, and genuinely hoped for improved Russia-U.S. relations. These are not crimes.
What if Russia decided to indict and imprison an American student in Russia based upon thin evidence and charges of acting as an “unregistered U.S. agent”? The Golden Rule applies to nations, not just individuals.
This is why the recent visit to Russia by my fellow Kentuckian Rand Paul is so courageous. In attempting to keep the lines of communication open between our two countries, he demonstrates true statesmanship amid a new xenophobic isolationism sweeping the anti-Trump media.
Sen. Paul’s meeting with Mikhail Gorbachev reminds me of President Reagan’s summits with that former leader of the Soviet Union. Like Paul and President Trump, Ronald Reagan believed in the power of a willingness to talk with our adversaries. Many believe that Reagan’s cordial relationship with Gorbachev encouraged the policies of “perestroika” and “glasnost” — an openness to freedom that led to communism’s downfall in Russia.
True leaders understand that dialogue is the quickest pathway to peace. As my colleague Rep. Rohrabacher says, “We need to find areas of cooperation and peace instead of constant belligerence that can only lead to war.” Contrary to what the D.C. elites would have you believe, Russia is not the biggest threat facing the United States today. The Russia scare is a distraction from our real threats, which include our massive national debt, porous borders, and an out-of-control federal government that claims the right to spy on Americans without a warrant.
It’s time to end the obsession with Russia. In the words of the famous English writer G.K. Chesterton, “A great nation ought not to be a hammer, but a magnet.” Let’s stop the bellicose rhetoric and instead start leading by example.
Thomas Massie is a Republican member of the House who has represented Kentucky’s 4th Congressional District since 2012.
CNBC: “Democrats view socialism more positively than capitalism, according to a new Gallup poll…”
To give you an idea of the deception inherent in socialism, here is a quote from none other than Andrew Carnegie, once one of the richest men in America:
“I believe Socialism is the grandest theory ever presented, and I am sure it will someday rule the world. Then we will have attained the Millennium…Then men will be content to work for the general welfare and share their riches with their neighbors.” (The New York Times, 1 January 1885, “A Millionaire Socialist”)
Carnegie, of course, like several of his ultra-rich compatriots, devised a method to give away his riches while keeping them: the non-profit foundation.
The last thing on Carnegie’s bloated mind was becoming “equal” with the great unwashed.
He was a liar of the first order. He recognized that, when you win the game of free enterprise, your most corrupt bet is to turn around and find every possible way to block others from winning. Then, you stand at the top of the heap, unchallenged.
That is exactly what he had in mind. That’s what socialism actually meant to him.
Let’s see socialism for what it is. Not in the abstract, but in reality.
The taking of money (taxes) from some people who work for it and giving it to others who don’t work for it. On a grand scale.
The vast expansion of freebies doled out by central government. In order to create and sustain dependence.
The government protection of favored persons and corporations, permitting them and aiding them to expand their fortunes without limit, regardless of what crimes they commit in the process. (Monsanto would be a fine example.)
The squeezing out of those who would compete with the favored persons and corporations.
The dictatorship by and for the very wealthy, pretending to be the servant of the masses.
The lie that the dictatorship is being run by the masses.
The gradual lowering of the standard of living for the overwhelming number of people.
The propaganda claiming socialism is the path to a better world for all.
In other words, socialism is a protection racket and a long con and a heartless system of elite control, posing as the greatest good.
It is just another form of top-down tyranny—as old as the hills.
A year or two ago, a person living in Europe told me that the European Union was not a problem, because it was just another layer of socialism placed over the existing socialist governments of European nations, and no one really noticed the existence of the EU.
—As if blindness were a reason not to worry.
SOCIALISM WAS NEVER ABOUT UNIVERSAL EQUALITY AND UNIVERSAL SHARING.
THERE IS NO SUCH THING AS UNIVERSAL AND COMPLETE EQUALITY AND SHARING, ONLY A FAKE VERSION DICTATED FROM ABOVE.
Socialism is, in the minds of most people who advocate it, a vague sentiment about people being kinder to each other.
Consider this fatuous and ludicrous statement, uttered by the mob boss of bosses of the Soviet Union, Nikita Khrushchev, in 1961: “The socialist economy has become so strong, so vigorous that from the summits we have reached we can issue an open challenge of peaceful economic competition to the most powerful capitalist country—the United States of America.”
Here is a correct translation: “Bankrolled and given vital technology by a few elites from the West, our vast society of socialist slave workers is now able to engage in capitalist competition with America.”
The raving of a madman.
Today’s youth who push and protest and riot and censor, on behalf of socialism, are working for the ultra-rich whom they despise.
That’s the long and short of “the glorious revolution.”
The Carnegies and Rockefellers of today (including a miniature Rockefeller named George Soros) have engaged the young as foot soldiers, and they know the young are willing dupes for socialism, because they created, for the young, an education system that makes them clueless and mindless.
The Carnegies and Rockefellers of today are saying: “Bring on the new world, the better world, the more just world, the happier world—whatever you want to call it—so we can run it from the top and show you what we really think of you. Make every conceivable lever of power ours, and then we’ll reveal what we really have planned for you.”
The prodigious author and researcher, Antony Sutton (1925-2002), wrote about hidden men (“socialists”) behind momentous events. He exposed their fraud of working for “the greater good.”
I recently came across a 1999 interview with Sutton, conducted by Kris Millegan, researcher and head of TrineDay publishers.
Millegan wrote about Antony Sutton in 1999: “Antony C. Sutton, 74, has been persecuted but never prosecuted for his research and subsequent publishing of his findings. His mainstream career was shattered by his devotion towards uncovering the truth. In 1968, his Western Technology and Soviet Economic Development was published by The Hoover Institute at Stanford University. Sutton showed how the Soviet state’s technological and manufacturing base, which was then engaged in supplying the North Vietnamese the armaments and supplies to kill and wound American soldiers, was built by US firms and mostly paid for by the US taxpayers. From their largest steel and iron plant, to automobile manufacturing equipment, to precision ball-bearings and computers, basically the majority of the Soviet’s large industrial enterprises had been built with the United States help or technical assistance.”
“…Then, someone sent Antony a membership list of Skull and Bones and— ‘a picture jumped out’. And what a picture! A multigenerational foreign-based secret society with fingers in all kinds of pies and roots going back to ‘Illuminati’ influences in 1830’s Germany.”
Here are excerpts from the 1999 interview:
Millegan – Can you tell the story of how you learned of Skull & Bones? And how you felt?
Sutton – I knew nothing of S&B until I received a letter in the early 80’s asking if I would like to look at a genuine membership list. For no real reason I said yes. It was agreed to send the package by Federal Express and I could keep it for 24 hours, it had to be returned to the safe. It was a “black bag” job by a family member disgusted with their activities.
For the benefit of any S&B members who may read and doubt the statement; the membership list is in two volumes, black leather bound. Living members and deceased members in separate volumes. Very handsome books.
I spent all night in Kinko’s, Santa Cruz, copied the entire volumes and returned within the 24 hour period.
I have never released any copies or identified the source. I figured each copy could be coded and enable S&B to trace the leak.
How did I feel? I felt then (as I do now} that these “prominent” men are really immature juveniles at heart. The horrible reality is that these little boys have been dominant in their influence in world affairs. No wonder we have wars and violence. Skull and Bones is the symbol of terrorist violence, pirates, the SS Deaths Head Division in WW Two, labels on poison bottles and so on.
I kept the stack of xerox sheets for quite a while before I looked at them—when I did look—a picture jumped out, THIS was a significant part of the so called [socialist] establishment. No wonder the world has problems!
Millegan: – What did your study of elites, economics, secrecy and technology do for your career?
Sutton – Depends what you mean by “career”?
By conventional standards I am an abject failure. I’ve been thrown out of two major Universities (UCLA and Stanford), denied tenure at Cal State Los Angeles. Every time I write something, it appears to offend someone in the Establishment and they throw me to the wolves.
On the other hand I’ve written 26 books, published a couple of newsletters and so on…even more important I’ve never compromised on the truth. And I don’t quit.
In material terms…hopeless failure. In terms of discovery…I think I’ve been successful. Judge a man by his enemies. William Buckley called me a “jerk”. Glenn Campbell, former Director of the Hoover Institution, Stanford called me “a problem”.
Millegan – Did any of Hitler’s economic policies threaten the interests of the international bankers, and if so did that play a role in his downfall?
Sutton – Hitler’s economic policies were OK’d by the bankers right through the war…ITT, Chase, Texaco and others were operating in Nazi-held France as late as 1945. In fact Chase in Paris was trying to get [acquire] Nazi accounts as late as 1944. When we got to Germany in May 1945, I remember seeing a (bombed-out) Woolworth store in Hamburg and thinking, “What’s Woolworth doing in Nazi Germany?” While we were bombed and shelled it was “business as usual” for Big Business. Try the Alien Custodian Papers.
…Union Banking is very important. I made a documentary for Dutch National TV some years ago. It got all the way through the production process to the Dutch TV Guide…at the last minute it was pulled and another film substituted. This documentary has proof of Bush financing Hitler—documents.
Maybe my Dutch friends will still get it viewed, but the [Skull&Bones] apparatus reaches into Holland.
Millegan – What is the story that was going to be told on Dutch TV? And what is the story of its censorship?
Sutton – Couple of years back, a Dutch TV production company from Amsterdam—under contract to Dutch National TV—came to US to make documentary on S&B [Skull and Bones]. They went to the Bones Temple and other places and interviewed people on East Coast. On West Coast, they interviewed myself and one other person.
I saw extracts from the original and it is a good professional job. They had documents linking Bush family and other S&B members to financing Hitler through Union Banking of New York and its Dutch correspondent bank. More than I have in [Sutton’s book] WALL STREET AND THE RISE OF HITLER.
The first version was later upgraded into a two part documentary and scheduled for showing this last March. It was pulled at last minute and has never been shown.
Millegan – What do you see for the future?
Suttton – Chaos, confusion and ultimately a battle between the individual and the State.
The individual is the stronger; and will win. The state is a fiction sanctified by Hegel and his followers to CONTROL the individual.
Sooner or later people will wake up. First we have to dump the trap of right and left, this is a Hegelian trap to divide and control. The battle is not between right and left; it is between us and them…
—end of interview excerpt—
Here is a telling Antony Sutton quote from his book, The Best Enemy Money Can Buy (1986):
“By using data of Russian origin it is possible to make an accurate analysis of the origins of this equipment. It was found that all the main diesel and steam-turbine propulsion systems of the ninety-six Soviet ships on the Haiphong supply run [to the North Vietnamese] that could be identified (i.e., eighty-four out of the ninety-six) originated in design or construction outside the USSR. We can conclude, therefore, that if the [US] State and Commerce Departments, in the 1950s and 1960s, had consistently enforced the legislation passed by Congress in 1949, the Soviets would not have had the ability to supply the Vietnamese War – and 50,000 more Americans and countless Vietnamese would be alive today.”
“Who were the government officials responsible for this transfer of known military technology? The concept originally came from National Security Adviser Henry Kissinger, who reportedly sold President Nixon on the idea that giving military techno¬logy to the Soviets would temper their global territorial ambitions. How Henry arrived at this gigantic non sequitur is not known. Sufficient to state that he aroused considerable concern over his motivations. Not least that Henry had been a paid family employee of the Rockefellers since 1958 and has served as International Advisory Committee Chairman of the Chase Manhattan Bank, a Rockefeller concern.”
If you think such traitorous actions could never have occurred, I point you to another researcher, Charles Higham, and his 1983 classic, Trading with the Enemy.
Higham focuses on World War 2. The men behind the curtain Higham exposed are in the same basic group that Antony Sutton exposed.
Higham, Trading with the Enemy:
“What would have happened if millions of American and British people, struggling with coupons and lines at the gas stations, had learned that in 1942 Standard Oil of New Jersey [part of the Rockefeller empire] managers shipped the enemy’s [Germany’s] fuel through neutral Switzerland and that the enemy was shipping Allied fuel? Suppose the public had discovered that the Chase Bank in Nazi-occupied Paris after Pearl Harbor was doing millions of dollars’ worth of business with the enemy with the full knowledge of the head office in Manhattan [the Rockefeller family among others?] Or that Ford trucks were being built for the German occupation troops in France with authorization from Dearborn, Michigan? Or that Colonel Sosthenes Behn, the head of the international American telephone conglomerate ITT, flew from New York to Madrid to Berne during the war to help improve Hitler’s communications systems and improve the robot bombs that devastated London? Or that ITT built the FockeWulfs that dropped bombs on British and American troops? Or that crucial ball bearings were shipped to Nazi-associated customers in Latin America with the collusion of the vice-chairman of the U.S. War Production Board in partnership with Goering’s cousin in Philadelphia when American forces were desperately short of them? Or that such arrangements were known about in Washington and either sanctioned or deliberately ignored?”
Getting the picture?
War, what is it good for? With the same “socialist” elites backing both sides, it’s good for business. It’s good for creating chaos and destruction. It’s good for launching new global organizations, in the aftermath; organizations that exert a level of control and reach that didn’t exist before. It’s good for launching organizations like the United Nations and the European Union and the World Trade Organization—dedicated to Globalism, which in turn is dedicated to planned civilization, in which the individual is demeaned and the group is All.
Freedom is demeaned; and dominance by the few over the many is hailed as peace in our time.
The author of three explosive collections, THE MATRIX REVEALED, EXIT FROM THE MATRIX, and POWER OUTSIDE THE MATRIX, Jon was a candidate for a US Congressional seat in the 29th District of California. He maintains a consulting practice for private clients, the purpose of which is the expansion of personal creative power. Nominated for a Pulitzer Prize, he has worked as an investigative reporter for 30 years, writing articles on politics, medicine, and health for CBS Healthwatch, LA Weekly, Spin Magazine, Stern, and other newspapers and magazines in the US and Europe. Jon has delivered lectures and seminars on global politics, health, logic, and creative power to audiences around the world. You can sign up for his free NoMoreFakeNews emails here or his free OutsideTheRealityMachine emails here.
“The enemy is the gramophone mind, whether or not one agrees with the record that is being played at the moment.” ~George Orwell
The big tech companies are now openly censoring popular viewpoints and deleting select social media pages who supposedly ‘violate community guidelines.’
There is, of course, never a detailed explanation of why companies like You Tube and Facebook delete user generated pages (our You Tube page was deleted in 2017 for no apparent reason and our Facebook page has been throttled down to almost no reach), and there is never a reasonable way to appeal for the reinstitution of these pages.
The end result of this type of censorship, however, quite likely will not bring about the feared Soviet style clampdown on ideas that challenge the establishment. It’s more reasonable to expect that these companies have fallen pray to monopolistic hubris and will soon see massive declines in viewership, collapsing stock prices and the revolt of angry shareholders. In other words, these companies are shooting themselves in the feet.
That said, the current social/political/media climate in America today is likely to bring about the rise of a far more insidious and dangerous type of censorship: self-censorship.
The Cambridge dictionary defines self-censorship as:
“control of what you say or do in order to avoid annoying or offending others, but without being told officially that such control is necessary:”
Wikipedia defines it as:
“Self-censorship is the act of censoring or classifying one’s own discourse. This is done out of fear of, or deference to, the sensibilities or preferences (actual or perceived) of others and without overt pressure from any specific party or institution of authority.” ~Wikipedia
In other words, self-censorship is voluntarily silencing one’s self out of fear of inoffical reprisal. That reprisal can come in many forms, soft and hard, but at it’s most fundamental level it involves the fear of what others will think of you or say to you if they don’t like what they hear.
This form of censorship is already taking hold and is the result of the fear that individuals have of upsetting the mobs and virtue signaling hordes of self-righteous personalities. It is the fear that anything you say can and will be used against you in the court of public opinion and political correctness. That just by voicing your opinion on something you risk being attacked by black clad and megaphone wielding tyrants, physically removed from restaurants or harassed when conducting the ordinary affairs of life.
George Orwell wrote extensively of self-censorship at the conclusion of world war II. When he sought to publish his classic book Animal Farm, which he wrote during the war as a metaphorical critique of Soviet society, he was rejected by a number of publishers who were afraid to offend the prevailing sentiment of the time that the USSR should not be criticized for fear of instigating a diplomatic rift with the UK.
Publishers and editors were not ordered by law not to criticize the USSR, but they did so as not to offend the political establishment and popular sentiment. To this, Orwell penned an introduction to Animal Farm explaining the effects of self-censorship on a free society.
Entitled, ‘The Freedom of the Press,’ Orwell’s short letter aptly describes the situation we are faced with today.
“…the chief danger to freedom of thought and speech at this moment is not the direct interference of the MOI or any official body. If publishers and editors exert themselves to keep certain topics out of print, it is not because they are frightened of prosecution but because they are frightened of public opinion. In this country intellectual cowardice is the worst enemy a writer or journalist has to face, and that fact does not seem to me to have had the discussion it deserves.” ~George Orwell
Orwell continues in his critique:
“Unpopular ideas can be silenced, and inconvenient facts kept dark, without the need for any official ban. Anyone who has lived long in a foreign country will know of instances of sensational items of news — things which on their own merits would get the big headlines — being kept right out of the British press, not because the Government intervened but because of a general tacit agreement that “it wouldn’t do” to mention that particular fact. So far as the daily newspapers go, this is easy to understand. The British press is extremely centralized, and most of it is owned by wealthy men who have every motive to be dishonest on certain important topics. But the same kind of veiled censorship also operates in books and periodicals, as well as in plays, films and radio. At any given moment there is an orthodoxy, a body of ideas which it is assumed that all right-thinking people will accept without question. It is not exactly forbidden to say this, that or the other, but it is “not done” to say it, just as in mid-Victorian times it was “not done” to mention trousers in the presence of a lady. Anyone who challenges the prevailing orthodoxy finds himself silenced with surprising effectiveness. A genuinely unfashionable opinion is almost never given a fair hearing, either in the popular press or in the highbrow periodicals.” ~George Orwell
In this dynamic, the influences of peer pressure and commercial pressures do more to silence dissent than any official decree of censorship could possibly accomplish.
When speaking on the importance of press freedom, American writer E.B. White spoke of the cultural importance of having many independent viewpoints and fearless news organizations professing a wide range of ideas.
“The press in our free country is reliable and useful not because of its good character but because of its great diversity. As long as there are many owners, each pursuing his own brand of truth, we the people have the opportunity to arrive at the truth and to dwell in the light. The multiplicity of ownership is crucial. It’s only when there are a few owners, or, as in a government-controlled press, one owner, that the truth becomes elusive and the light fails. For a citizen in our free society, it is an enormous privilege and a wonderful protection to have access to hundreds of periodicals, each peddling its own belief. There is safety in numbers: the papers expose each other’s follies and peccadillos, correct each other’s mistakes, and cancel out each other’s biases. The reader is free to range around in the whole editorial bouillabaisse and explore it for the one clam that matters—the truth.” ~E. B. White
Media censorship is a shift in the flow of information, while self-censorship is a shift in consciousness. It is the dangerous cornerstone of group-think.
We haven’t reached that point yet, not by a long shot, as is evident in the fact that both sides of the political spectrum are 100% engaged in bickering with the other side. But as social discourse continues to digress and corporations and other institutions feel more empowered to compel their employees and clients to unofficially comply with one political view or another, self-censorship will come creeping more so into our culture.
Will you have the courage to be yourself as the push towards internet censorship gains momentum?
Dylan Charles is the editor of Waking Times and co-host of Redesigning Reality, both dedicated to ideas of personal transformation, societal awakening, and planetary renewal. His personal journey is deeply inspired by shamanic plant medicines and the arts of Kung Fu, Qi Gong and Yoga. After seven years of living in Costa Rica, he now lives in the Blue Ridge Mountains, where he practices Brazilian Jiu Jitsu and enjoys spending time with family. He has written hundreds of articles, reaching and inspiring millions of people around the world.
Not content to stop at banning videos, YouTube has decided to add “fact checks” and quotes to videos on topics that it feels are controversial, and the MMR vaccine is one of them.
Last month, the video sharing platform started placing a blurb of text beneath certain videos offering viewers a “scientific” explanation. For example, the text placed underneath some videos about climate change is taken from a Wikipedia entry on global warming and reads: ”Multiple lines of scientific evidence shows that the climate system is warming.” They’re also questioning sources, with a series of climate videos posted by the RT news site containing a description from Wikipedia about the publisher that says: ”RT is funded in whole or in part by the Russian government.”
The move comes after YouTube announced this spring that it will place descriptions taken from Encyclopedia Britannica and Wikipedia alongside videos about topics that tend to attract conspiracy theories, such as the Oklahoma City bombing and the moon landing. Although YouTube has not shared a full list of topics that will be given this treatment, some of the topics identified in a post to its administrators include global warming, Dulce Base, the Federal Emergency Management Agency, the Kecksburg UFO incident, the 1980 Camarate air accident, and the MMR vaccine.
The company has not notified the users who originally uploaded the videos in question that they will bear these propaganda messages. It is not clear why YouTube is lumping the MMR vaccine’s proven link to autism in the same category as conspiracy theories, but given their track record, politics almost certainly played a big role.
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The Chief Marketing Officer of PragerU, Craig Strazzeri, said YouTube’s new policy, which has affected some PragerU videos, shows its political bias.
He said: “Despite claiming to be a public forum and a platform open to all, YouTube is clearly a left-wing organization. This is just another mistake in a long line of giant missteps that erodes America’s trust in Big Tech, much like what has already happened with the mainstream news media.”
Others have expressed surprise that these blurbs are showing up on videos that are about science rather than conspiracies. YouTube says that even more videos will receive the labels in the months to come and that it is using an algorithm rather than people to determine which videos will be given the blurbs.
Right now, they are only visible to viewers in the U.S., and they are expected to be rolled out gradually. YouTube will be keeping track of how often viewers click on the blurb, which will link back to the original source.
Angry users flocking to speech-protecting sites
People are growing increasingly fed up with YouTube’s attempts to control the narrative and influence what people believe by silencing views that oppose their own. This month, they came under fire for banning right-wing host Alex Jones’s channel, which was just the latest in a long string of moves against videos on topics like vaccines, climate change, natural health and guns.
If you’re looking for a place to post or watch videos without YouTube insulting your intelligence or controlling what you read and share, the free-speech alternative REAL.video is the place to go. With more than 300 new channels joining the platform each day and 1.5 million minutes of video served each week, it provides a destination for people who value freedom to discuss all manner of topics that are unwelcome elsewhere. Best of all, there is no user tracking, shadow banning, or long ads to sit through. As great and fair alternatives like this gain in popularity, one can only hope that YouTube’s reach will shorten dramatically.
The NaturalNews Network is a non-profit collection of public education websites covering topics that empower individuals to make positive changes in their health, environmental sensitivity, consumer choices and informed skepticism. The NaturalNews Network operates without a profit incentive, and its key writer, Mike Adams, receives absolutely no payment for his time, articles or books. The NaturalNews Network is not for sale, and does not accept money to cover any story (or to spike it). NaturalNews Network is what the news industry used to be, before it sold out to big business.
Kanye West talks about what he thinks of Donald Trump, Kim’s trip to Washington D.C. to meet with him, the two motivating forces in the world, overcoming fear, being too caught up in the past, and his thoughts on people being mad at him for his views.
“If the vote were today” in Congress, says United States House of Representatives Member Thomas Massie (R-KY) in a new interview with host Matt Welch at Reason, “the federal prohibition [on marijuana] would go away.”
The catch, says Massie, is that leadership will not allow such a vote to occur. “A change in leadership could mean that issue gets resolved tomorrow,” asserts Massie.
No matter the current resistance by leadership, Massie predicts “the federal prohibition on the marijuana plant will be gone within a decade,” due to states taking the lead against prohibition rather than because of the bravery of legislators in Washington, DC.
Watch Massie’s complete interview here:
In the House of Representatives, Massie has supported ending the US government’s war on marijuana. A focus of that support has been Massie’s efforts to end US government prohibition on the growing of industrial hemp.
In the House, leadership has prevented marijuana prohibition roll back bills from reaching the floor for debates and votes. The House Rules Committee has also blocked many amendments seeking to chip away at marijuana prohibition from being considered on the House floor during debate of other legislation, such as appropriations bills.
Back in May of 2014, before consideration of marijuana prohibition roll back amendments was fully shut off in the House, House members voted by comfortable margins in favor of Department of Justice appropriations bill amendments intended to direct the US government to back off from taking action against people complying with state medical marijuana and industrial hemp laws that are less restrictive than the US government laws.
Massie’s assessment that there is now majority congressional support for taking the bigger step of ending the US government’s marijuana prohibition seems in line with growing majority public support for legalization as well as legalization having been approved in nine states and Washington, DC, with Michigan and New Jersey likely to be added to the list this year.
Massie is a member of the Ron Paul Institute Advisory Board.
The Ron Paul Institute for Peace and Prosperity is a project of Dr. Paul’s Foundation for Rational Economics and Education (F.R.E.E.), founded in the 1970s as an educational organization. The Institute continues and expands Dr. Paul’s lifetime of public advocacy for a peaceful foreign policy and the protection of civil liberties at home. The Institute mobilizes colleagues and collaborators of Dr. Paul’s to participate in a broad coalition to educate and advocate for fundamental changes in our foreign and domestic policy.
Before televisions and computers were invented, Americans didn’t spend any time staring at television and computer screens. They worked hard, raised their families, personally interacted with their communities (remember that?), and generally tried to make the world a better place. But now for many of us, the “virtual world” actually seems more real than the “real world” does. In fact, as you will see below, average Americans now spend most of their waking hours staring at a screen. We have willingly connected ourselves to “the matrix”, and the amount of time spent connected is rising with each passing year. A report that was just put out by Nielsen found that we spend an average of 11 hours per day interacting with media…
Americans now spend most of their waking hours watching TV, listening to music, using apps on their smartphones, or otherwise consuming media, a new study finds.
US adults are spending more than 11 hours a day on average—or about two-thirds of their waking time—consuming media in some form, Nielsen showed in its first-quarter 2018 report on US media consumption today (July 31). It measured, based on its representative panels of TV, radio, and digital households and consumers, activities like watching TV and DVDs, listening to the radio, visiting apps on a smartphone or tablet, and using the internet and game consoles.
No wonder we don’t have time to do anything else.
The time Americans spent interacting with various forms of media was up 19 minutes over the previous quarter, and here is how it broke down…
Watching live television: 4 hours, 10 minutes
Watching time-shifted television: 36 minutes
App/Web on a smartphone: 2 hours, 22 minutes
App/Web on a tablet: 47 minutes
Internet on a computer: 39 minutes
Listening to the radio: 1 hour, 46 minutes
Internet connected device: 26 minutes
Game console: 14 minutes
DVD/Blu-Ray device: 6 minutes
It really surprised me how little time Americans spend watching DVDs. I suppose that since everything is going digital that DVDs will someday be relics of a bygone age, but we aren’t there quite yet.
Another surprising thing from the report was the difference in behavior between the generations. According to Nielsen, older Americans actually spend the most time consuming media…
Though older generations generally spend the most time with media (adults 35-49 spend over 11 hours a day on it, while adults 50-64 do so at a nearly 13-hour clip), younger generations are at the forefront of TV-connected device and digital usage.
But young adults spend more time than anyone else consuming media on smartphones…
Young adults 18-34 spend 43% of their time consuming media on digital platforms. Almost a third of their time spent with media (29%) comes from apps/web on a smartphone—the most of any measured generation.
If it seems like young people are constantly on their phones, that is because they are. Smartphone use is at an all-time high, and it keeps going up every year.
Sadly, it isn’t just in our free time that most of us are willingly connecting ourselves to “the matrix”. A different study discovered that the average office worker in America spends 1,700 hours in front of a screen each year…
We’re often told to limit the amount of screen time in our daily lives, but for many of us, we don’t have much of a choice. A new study finds the average office worker spends nearly 1,700 hours in front of a computer screen over the course of a year.
According to a survey of 2,000 office workers by contact lenses manufacturer Acuvue, office workers spend about 6.5 hours a day sitting in front of their computer.
So when you add the amount of time we spend staring at screens at work to the amount of time that we spend staring at screens at home, for many of us it pretty much takes up almost all of our waking hours.
Is this good for our society?
And we should talk about who controls all of this media that we are consuming. Today, approximately 90 percent of the programming that comes through your television is controlled by just 6 giant media corporations. Of course those 6 giant media corporations are ultimately owned by the elite of the world.
So if you spend several hours watching television each day, you are allowing “the matrix” to fundamentally shape what you think, what you believe and how you view the world.
At least on the Internet there has been more diversity of viewpoints, but now there is a massive effort to censor alternative voices. The elite are attempting to become gatekeepers in the digital world just like they are with every other form of media.
In 2018, major alternative voices are being “shadowbanned”, censored or having their accounts terminated altogether by the tech giants. Some large conservative websites have seen their traffic from social media fall by over 90 percent, and many of them have seen a dramatic drop in revenue. For example, WND has seen revenue decline by about 60 percent over the last two years…
WND and the rest of the independent media are feeling the heat from the Internet Cartel, which controls traffic, revenue, search power, hosting and distribution of news and information through social media, not to mention retail sales of all books.
It’s a scary time of rapidly shrinking traffic and revenues. WND, for instance, has seen drops in revenue from more than $10 million in 2016 to $6 million last year to perhaps as little as $4 million in 2018.
All other forms of media are already completely dominated by the elite, and so we must not allow them to take full control of the Internet.
If you want to change society, it won’t do you any good to go out to the street corners or to the marketplaces because nobody will listen to you.
If you want to change society, you have to go online, because that is where the people are.
Right now we are in an information war, and the future of our country is hanging in the balance. So let us fight this information war as hard as we can, because losing is not an option.
In the wake of Defense Distributed winning the right to freely publish its blueprint for its “Liberator” 3D-printed gun, the gun control outrage machine went into overdrive:
In breach of agreement with the State Dept, Cody Wilson did downloand about 2500 copies of blue prints for 3D guns. It is out because of the Trump Admin. WE NEED TO MAKE THIS THE DEFINING ISSUE OF THIS ELECTION. Every candidate should be forced to take a stand on this.
3D GUN UPDATE: today, @SenBillNelson took to the Senate floor to ask the Senate for “unanimous consent” to immediately take up and pass his legislation to block the online publication of blueprints used to make fully functioning 3D-printed guns. #NoRA (Thread) pic.twitter.com/hRucDATVTu
The most egregious bit of hyperbole was courtesy of Sen. Chuck Schumer, who displayed his ignorance on “ghost guns” in just two sentences:
“I am sounding an alarm that come Aug. 1, America is going to get a lot less safe when it comes to the gut-wrenching epidemic of gun violence,” Schumer said. “Ghost guns are not only scary, they’re outright dangerous in the way they can mimic the look and the capacity of a hardened, fully semiautomatic weapon.”
In spite of the fact that Liberator plans have been available for years (and are still available in many places on the internet), Schumer thinks an arbitrary legal date will all of a sudden mean Chicago gangs will take to the streets armed with “ghost gun” Liberators that are as fully functional as regular firearms. The truth is, Schumer blatantly ignores the truth not only on the Liberator, but what a “ghost gun” actually is.
While Wikipedia’s “A ghost gun is a gun with no serial number” definition is enough to make Schumer look stupid, for the sake of argument, we will go with a more robust definition from Quora…
It is a firearm manufactured for personal use in compliance with 18 USC 922(r), Federal, State and local laws. Such firearms are made for personal use and are more-or-less untraceable as they are not required to be registered or serialized.
Hence the made-up term “Ghost Gun”, a gun that is ephemeral, that doesn’t exist in any form that can be traced or observed unless its owner chooses to reveal its existence.
…which is especially relevant when the legality of a “ghost gun” is considered:
The key to such guns is ALL laws must be followed. They cannot be manufactured for commercial sale as this requires an FFL07. They must not violate the National Firearms Act of 1934 in general. If the firearm is assembled using foreign made parts, it must comply with 18 USC 922(r) in order to be considered a “US Made” firearm.
…but more importantly, the term has traditionally been applied to “unfinished” lower receivers and firearms into fully functioning ones, as the LA Times described in its fearmongering on the dangers of “untraceable” ghost guns:
“Criminals are making their own weapons because they cannot buy them legally … or they are paying other people to make those guns for them to get around the gun laws,” said Bill McMullan, special agent in charge of ATF’s L.A. Field Division. “This is a trend among Southern California gangs.”
An unfinished lower receiver, sometimes referred to as an “80% receiver,” can legally be purchased without a serial number from a seller who is not a federally licensed firearms dealer as long as it is missing the key components that would make it a firearm.
The lower receiver then can be completed easily by drilling a few remaining holes into the unfinished metal shell. It is then ready for a barrel, trigger mechanism, stock and upper receiver to be attached.
Aside from the LA Times (falsely) believing that milling a fire control cavity and the other gunsmithing work required to finish a lower receiver can be “easily” done, the newspaper made sure to omit the recent California law which makes such activity illegal unless the finished receiver is registered:
In July 2016, California passed AB 857 which requires all completed firearms to have a serial number applied by Jan 1, 2019. An 80% lower is not a firearm, so a serial number would only be required once the 80% lower is completed. Unfinished 80% lower receivers do not need a serial number.
If you build an 80% lower into a 100% lower after July 1, 2018, you must FIRST apply to the California DOJ for a serial number, pay a fee, and they will then assign a serial number that you must apply to your firearm. If you built your firearm prior to July 2018 and already engraved a serial number of your choosing that is compliant with ATF regulations, the text of the law seems to indicate that this should be in compliance. However, we have heard that CA DOJ has made statements suggesting that people must engrave a new DOJ issued serial number on their lower even though the lower receiver already has a ATF compliant serial number engraved on it.
To quickly summarize the above, every activity pertaining to building, completing, or possessing “ghost guns” by prohibited persons is already illegal under federal law, and heavily regulated under many state laws.
So, why is all of the “ghost gun” talk pertinent to 3D-printed guns? That question is even more relevant when you take a closer look at the Liberator itself:
The Defense Distributed gun can be best described as a .380 caliber, single-shot, plastic piece of shit. And before you say “cheap”, take a close look at what The Atlantic, a super-liberal mainstream media outlet, stated about the Liberator:
But 3D printing, still being a young technology, is slow. The two firms I spoke with each suggested that printing the various small parts would take hours — eight hours in one’s estimation.
Nor would it necessarily be cheap. The firm that ultimately offered to do the printing suggested that, given the number of objects and the fact that it was important to ensure that they were well-milled and that I wanted it quickly, the final price would be a bit above my budget: $1,500.
I wish the best of luck to anyone that attempts to build a Liberator for under $4,000 and safely fire it 10+ times. But, even if it can be done for less than that, why would a criminal waste the money on the very limited Liberator, when the parts for a “ghost” AR-15 can be ordered online and “completed easily”, as the LA Times puts it?
The liberal hysteria surrounding “ghost guns” is nothing more than the latest round of liberal virtue signaling and inability to cope with the fact that President Trump is indeed… President. In spite of the fact that all activity regarding home finishing of firearms is already widely-available yet illegal and off-limits to prohibited persons…
…this will not stop the big-money gun control machine from using the Liberator as its latest tool to make legal gun ownership as arduous, time consuming, and expensive as possible.