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A Nation Imploding: Digital Tyranny, Insurrection and Martial Law

This article was originally published by John W. Whitehead at The Rutherford Institute. 

“In this difficult day, in this difficult time for the United States, it is perhaps well to ask what kind of a nation we are and what direction we want to move in. [Y]ou can be filled with bitterness, with hatred, and a desire for revenge. We can move in that direction as a country, in great polarization…filled with hatred toward one another. Or we can make an effort … to understand and to comprehend, and to replace that violence, that stain of bloodshed that has spread across our land, with an effort to understand with compassion and love… What we need in the United States is not division; what we need in the United States is not hatred; what we need in the United States is not violence or lawlessness; but love and wisdom, and compassion toward one another, and a feeling of justice toward those who still suffer within our country, whether they be white or they be black.”—Robert F. Kennedy on the assassination of Martin Luther King, Jr.

 

This is what we have been reduced to: A violent mob. A nation on the brink of martial law. A populace under house arrest. A techno-corporate state wielding its power to immobilize huge swaths of the country. And a Constitution in tatters.

We are imploding on multiple fronts, all at once.

This is what happens when ego, greed, and power are allowed to take precedence over liberty, equality, and justice.

Just to be clear, however: this is not a revolution.

This is a ticking time bomb.

There is absolutely no excuse for the violence that took place at the Capitol on January 6, 2021.

Yet no matter which way you look at it, the fallout from this attempted coup could make this worrisome state of affairs even worse.

First, you’ve got the president, who has been accused of inciting a riot and now faces a second impeachment and a scandal that could permanently mar his legacy. While the impeachment process itself is a political beast, the question of whether President Trump incited his followers to riot is one that has even the best legal experts debating. Yet as First Amendment scholar David Hudson Jr. explains, for Trump’s rhetoric to be stripped of its free speech protections, “The speaker must intend to and actually use words that rally people to take illegal action. The danger must be imminent—not in the indefinite future. And the words must be uttered in a situation in which violence is likely to happen.”

At a minimum, Trump’s actions and words—unstatesmanlike and reckless, by any standards—over the course of his presidency and on Jan. 6 helped cause a simmering pot to boil over.

Second, there were the so-called “patriots” who took to the streets because the jailer of their choice didn’t get chosen to knock heads for another four years. Those “Stop the Steal” protesters may have deluded themselves (or been deluded) into believing they were standing for freedom when they stormed the Capitol. However, all they really did was give the Deep State and its corporate partners a chance to pull back the curtain and reveal how little freedom we really have. There is nothing that can be said to justify the actions of those who, armed with metal pipes, chemical irritants, stun guns, and other types of weapons, assaulted and stampeded those in their path.

There are limits to what can be done in the so-called name of liberty, and this level of violence—no matter who wields it or what brand of politics or zealotry motivate them—crossed the line.

Third, you’ve got the tech giants, who meted out their own version of social justice by way of digital tyranny and corporate censorship. Yet there can be no freedom of speech if social media giants can muzzle whomever they want, whenever they want, on whatever pretext they want in the absence of any real due process, review, or appeal. As Edward Snowden warned, whether it was warranted or not, the social media ban on President Trump signaled a turning point in the battle for control over digital speech. And that is exactly what is playing out as users, including those who have no ties to the Capitol riots, begin to experience lockouts, suspensions, and even deletions of their social media accounts.

Remember, the First Amendment is a steam valve. It allows people to peacefully air viewpoints, vent frustrations, debate and disagree, and generally work through the problems of self-governance. Without that safety mechanism in place, self-censorship increases, discontent festers, foment brews, and violence becomes the default response for resolving disputes, whether with the government or each other. At a minimum, we need more robust protections in place to protect digital expression and a formalized process for challenging digital censorship.

Unfortunately, digital censorship is just the beginning. Once you start using social media scores coupled with surveillance capitalism to determine who is worthy enough to be part of society, anything goes. In China, which has been traveling this road for years now, millions of individuals and businesses, blacklisted as “unworthy” based on social media credit scores that grade them based on whether they are “good” citizens, have been banned from accessing financial markets, buying real estate or traveling by air or train.

Fourth, you’ve got the police, who normally exceed the constitutional limits restraining them from brutality, surveillance, and other excesses. Only this time, despite intelligence indicating that some of the rioters were planning for mayhem, police were outnumbered and ill-prepared to deal with the incursion. Investigations underway suggest that some police may even have colluded with the rioters.

Certainly, the lack of protocols adopted by the Capitol Police bears an unnerving resemblance to the lack of protocols in Charlottesville, Va., in 2017, when police who were supposed to uphold the law and prevent violence failed to do either. In fact, as the Washington Post reports, police “seemed to watch as groups beat each other with sticks and bludgeoned one another with shields… At one point, police appeared to retreat and then watch the beatings before eventually moving in to end the free-for-all, make arrests and tend to the injured.” Incredibly, when the first signs of open violence broke out, it was reported that the police chief allegedly instructed his staff to “let them fight, it will make it easier to declare an unlawful assembly.”

There’s a pattern emerging if you pay close enough attention: Instead of restoring order, local police stand down. Without fail, what should be an exercise in how to peacefully disagree turns ugly the moment looting, vandalism, violence, intimidation tactics, and rioting are introduced into the equation. Tensions rise, violence escalates, and federal armies move in.

All that was missing on Jan. 6 was a declaration of martial law.

Which brings us to the fifth point, martial law. Given that the nation has been dancing around the fringes of martial law with each national crisis, it won’t take much more to push the country over the edge to a declaration and military lockdown. The rumblings of armed protests at all 50 state capitals and in Washington, D.C., will only serve to heighten tensions, double down on the government’s military response, and light a match to a powder keg state of affairs. With tens of thousands of National Guard troops and federal law enforcement personnel mobilized to lock down Washington, DC, in the wake of the Jan. 6 riots and in advance of the Jan. 20 inauguration, this could be the largest military show-of-force in recent years.

So where do we go from here?

That all of these events are coming to a head around Martin Luther King Jr. Day is telling.

More than 50 years after King was assassinated, America has become a ticking time bomb of racial unrest and injustice, police militarization, surveillance, government corruption and ineptitude, the blowback from a battlefield mindset and endless wars abroad, and a growing economic inequality between the haves and have nots

Making matters worse, modern America has compounded the evils of racism, materialism, and militarism with ignorance, intolerance, and fear.

Callousness, cruelty, meanness, immorality, ignorance, hatred, intolerance, and injustice have become hallmarks of our modern age, magnified by an echo chamber of nasty tweets and government-sanctioned brutality.

“Despite efforts to curb hate speech, eradicate bullying and extend tolerance, a culture of nastiness has metastasized in which meanness is routinely rewarded, and common decency and civility are brushed aside,” observed Teddy Wayne in a New York Times piece on “The Culture of Nastiness.”

Every time I read a news headline or flip on the television or open up an email or glance at social media, I run headlong into people consumed with back-biting, partisan politics, sniping, toxic hate, meanness, and materialism. Donald Trump is, in many ways, the embodiment of this culture of meanness. Yet as Wayne points out, “Trump is less enabler in chief than a symptom of a free-for-all environment that prizes cutting smears… Social media has normalized casual cruelty.”

Whether it’s unfriending or blocking someone on Facebook, tweeting taunts and barbs on Twitter, or merely using cyberspace to bully someone or peddle in gossip, we have become masters in the art of meanness.

This culture of meanness has come to characterize many aspects of the nation’s governmental and social policies. “Meanness today is a state of mind,” writes professor Nicolaus Mills in his book The Triumph of Meanness, “the product of a culture of spite and cruelty that has had an enormous impact on us.”

This casual cruelty is made possible by a growing polarization within the populace that emphasizes what divides us—race, religion, economic status, sexuality, ancestry, politics, etc.—rather than what unites us: we are all human.

This is what writer Anna Quindlen refers to as “the politics of exclusion, what might be thought of as the cult of otherness… It divides the country as surely as the Mason-Dixon line once did. And it makes for mean-spirited and punitive politics and social policy.”

This is more than meanness, however.

This is the psychopathic mindset adopted by the architects of the Deep State, and it applies equally whether you’re talking about Democrats or Republicans.

Beware, because this kind of psychopathology can spread like a virus among the populace.

As an academic study into pathocracy concluded, “[T]yranny does not flourish because perpetuators are helpless and ignorant of their actions. It flourishes because they actively identify with those who promote vicious acts as virtuous.”

People don’t simply line up and salute. It is through one’s own personal identification with a given leader, party, or social order that they become agents of good or evil. To this end, “we the people” have become “we the police state.”

By failing to actively take a stand for good, we become agents of evil. It’s not the person in charge who is solely to blame for the carnage. It’s the populace that looks away from the injustice, that empowers the totalitarian regime, that welcomes the building blocks of tyranny.

This realization hit me full-force a few years ago. I had stopped into a bookstore and was struck by all of the books on Hitler, everywhere I turned. Yet had there been no Hitler, there still would have been a Nazi regime. There still would have been gas chambers and concentration camps and a Holocaust.

Hitler wasn’t the architect of the Holocaust. He was merely the figurehead. The same goes for the American police state: had there been no Trump or Obama or Bush, there still would have been a police state. There still would have been police shootings and private prisons and endless wars and government pathocracy.

Why? Because “we the people” have paved the way for this tyranny to prevail.

By turning Hitler into a super-villain who singlehandedly terrorized the world—not so different from how Trump is often depicted—historians have given Hitler’s accomplices (the German government, the citizens that opted for security and order over liberty, the religious institutions that failed to speak out against evil, the individuals who followed orders even when it meant a death sentence for their fellow citizens) a free pass.

This is how tyranny rises and freedom falls.

None of us who remain silent and impassive in the face of evil, racism, extreme materialism, meanness, intolerance, cruelty, injustice, and ignorance get a free pass.

Those among us who follow figureheads without question, who turn a blind eye to injustice and turn their backs on need, who march in lockstep with tyrants and bigots, who allow politics to trump principle, who give in to meanness and greed, and who fail to be outraged by the many wrongs being perpetrated in our midst, it is these individuals who must shoulder the blame when the darkness wins.

Darkness cannot drive out darkness; only light can do that. Hate cannot drive out hate, only love can do that,” Martin Luther King Jr. sermonized.

The darkness is winning

It’s not just on the world stage we must worry about the darkness winning

The darkness is winning in our communities. It’s winning in our homes, our neighborhoods, our churches and synagogues, and our government bodies. It’s winning in the hearts of men and women the world over who are embracing hatred over love. It’s winning in every new generation that is being raised to care only for themselves, without any sense of moral or civic duty to stand for freedom.

John F. Kennedy, killed by an assassin’s bullet five years before King would be similarly executed, spoke of a torch that had been “passed to a new generation of Americans—born in this century, tempered by war, disciplined by a hard and bitter peace, proud of our ancient heritage—and unwilling to witness or permit the slow undoing of those human rights to which this nation has always been committed, and to which we are committed today at home and around the world.

Once again, a torch is being passed to a new generation, but this torch is setting the world on fire, burning down the foundations put in place by our ancestors, and igniting all of the ugliest sentiments in our hearts.

This fire is not liberating; it is destroying.

We are teaching our children all the wrong things: we are teaching them to hate, teaching them to worship false idols (materialism, celebrity, technology, politics), teaching them to prize vain pursuits and superficial ideals over kindness, goodness, and depth.

We are on the wrong side of the revolution.

“If we are to get on to the right side of the world revolution,” advised King, “we as a nation must undergo a radical revolution of values. We must rapidly begin the shift from a thing-oriented society to a person-oriented society.

Freedom demands responsibility.

Freedom demands that we stop thinking as Democrats and Republicans and start thinking like human beings, or at the very least, Americans.

Martin Luther King Jr. dared to dream of a world in which all Americans “would be guaranteed the unalienable rights of life, liberty, and the pursuit of happiness.”

He didn’t live to see that dream become a reality. It’s still not a reality. We haven’t dared to dream that dream in such a long time.

But imagine…

Imagine what this country would be like if Americans put aside their differences and dared to stand up—united—for freedom…

Imagine what this country would be like if Americans put aside their differences and dared to speak out—with one voice—against injustice…

Imagine what this country would be like if Americans put aside their differences and dared to push back—with the full force of our collective numbers—against the evils of government despotism.

As I make clear in my book Battlefield America: The War on the American People, tyranny wouldn’t stand a chance.

The post A Nation Imploding: Digital Tyranny, Insurrection and Martial Law first appeared on SHTF Plan – When It Hits The Fan, Don’t Say We Didn’t Warn You.

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Ruling Class Wants Yo To “Remain Calm” And “Respect” The Oppressive System They Force You To Live Under

World leaders (the ruling class) is urging the public to “remain calm” and “respect democracy” after people stormed the Capitol yesterday.  We are the slaves, and not allowed to demand we live freely as is our birthright.

One such ruler is Canadian President Justin Trudeau.  The rulers can not possibly have people realizing no one has the right to rule them, whether the majority votes or not.

“Democracy is two wolves and a lamb voting on what they are going to have for lunch. Liberty is a well-armed lamb contesting the vote.” -Benjamin Franklin

Wake up, people.  This is how the ruling class sees us! We are their docile slaves and don’t you dare complain about it or do something about it.

Elitist UN Secretary-General Antonio Guterres is “saddened by today’s events in Washington,” a spokesman for the international body said yesterday after protestors stormed the Capitol, according to RT. He added: “In such circumstances, it is important that political leaders impress on their followers the need to refrain from violence, as well as to respect democratic processes and the rule of law.” Even though that rule of law is their enslavement. This is getting ridiculous.

These are all the same, honestly.  Respect the system of oppression set up for you, obey the ruling class, and just submit to your own enslavement and oppression to people who think they own you.  Is this finally the wake-up call people need? This is how they view us!

Another ruler Indian PM Narendra Modi said he was distressed to see news about rioting and violence in Washington, DC.” The Australian ruler is also upset that people are finally realizing no one should be enslaving, ruling, or otherwise owning them.

Government literally means “guvernare” to control “mentis” the mind. You can almost feel these rulers are getting anxious as people wake up to their birthright: freedom.

The ‘Great Reset’ is about Expanding Government Power and Suppressing Liberty

Figure out who owns you and do it quickly.  Time is up. Be safe, and stay alert.  Listen to what these tyrants are saying so you can understand how they view us and always continue to prepare for the worst while hoping for the best.

2020 Was a Snack, 2021 Is the Main Course

The post Ruling Class Wants Yo To “Remain Calm” And “Respect” The Oppressive System They Force You To Live Under first appeared on SHTF Plan – When It Hits The Fan, Don’t Say We Didn’t Warn You.

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The Year in which Comforting American Myths Were Ravaged

This article was originally published by James Bovard at The American Institute for Economic Research. 

Thanks in large part to Covid lockdowns, this year has left vast wreckage in its wake, with ten million jobs lost, more than 100,000 businesses and dozens of national chains bankrupted or closed. Up to 40 million people could face eviction in the coming months for failing to pay rent, and Americans report that their mental health is at record low levels. But the casualty list for 2020 must also include many of the political myths that shape Americans’ lives.

Perhaps the biggest myth to die this year was that Americans’ constitutional rights are safeguarded by the Bill of Rights. After the Covid-19 pandemic began, governors in state after state effectively placed scores of millions of citizens under house arrest – dictates that former Attorney General Bill Barr aptly compared to “the greatest intrusion on civil liberties” since the end of slavery. Politicians and government officials merely had to issue decrees, which were endlessly amended, in order to destroy citizens’ freedom of movement, freedom of association, and freedom of choice in daily life. Los Angeles earlier this month banned almost all walking and bicycling in the city, ordering four million people to “to remain in their homes” in a futile effort to banish a virus.

The Rule of Law is another myth impaled by 2020’s dire developments. Courts have repeatedly struck down sweeping restrictions. Federal judge William Stickman IV invalidated some of Pennsylvania’s restrictions in a September ruling: “Broad population-wide lockdowns are such a dramatic inversion of the concept of liberty in a free society as to be nearly presumptively unconstitutional.” After the Michigan Supreme Court effectively labeled Governor Gretchen Whitmer a lawless dictator, she responded by issuing “new COVID-19 emergency orders that are nearly identical to her invalidated emergency orders,” as the Mackinac Center noted. How many governors and mayors have you seen on the television news being led away in handcuffs after their arrest for violating citizens’ rights this year? None.

Another myth that 2020 obliterated was the notion that politicians spending more than a hundred billion dollars every year for science and public health would keep Americans safe.

The Centers for Disease Control utterly botched the initial testing regime, sending out bogus tests to state and local health departments and taking a month and a half to do what the Thai government achieved in one day. The Food and Drug Administration helped turn the coronavirus from deadly peril into a national catastrophe. Long after foreign nations had been ravaged and many cases had been detected in America, the FDA continued blocking private testing. The FDA continued forcing the nation’s most innovative firms to submit to its command-and-control approach, notwithstanding the pandemic.

The benevolence and compassion of public school teachers was another myth that 2020 obliterated. Teacher unions helped barricade school doors the same way that segregationist governors in the 1950s and 1960s refused to obey federal court orders to admit black students. The Chicago Teachers Union proclaimed: “The push to reopen schools is based in sexism, racism, and misogyny.”

Black and Hispanic students suffered much larger learning losses due to school shutdowns, leading former Education Secretary John King to warn of a “lost generation of students.” Despite a deluge of studies that showed that schools posed little risk of fueling the pandemic, teachers insisted that they were entitled to both their salaries and to stay at home as long as they considered necessary.

This was part of the collapse of the broader myth that the rulers and ruled have common interests. Among other splits, the response to the pandemic divided Americans into those who work for a living, and those who “work” for the government. Government employees in most states and at the federal level have been the Untouchables, continuing to draw full pay even when they were no longer even required to show up for work. One exception to this trend is government tax collectors, who continue commandeering as much as ever from citizens and property owners regardless of the collapse in public services in many places this year.

Another myth that perished in 2020 was that social media and the Internet could be a powerful propellant of free information. Instead, the biggest players pulled the most strings to suppress criticisms or dissent from the latest Covid policies promulgated by officialdom. On March 18, Twitter announced that, in response to Covid-19, it would ban tweets guilty of “denial of expert guidance” or “misleading content purporting to be from experts or authorities.”

The World Health Organization initially overestimated the Covid fatality rate by 50-fold but they remain Twitter-approved. Facebook recently launched far more aggressive policies, including directly contacting anyone who liked or commented on a piece that was later ruled erroneous by Facebook guardians and is refusing any ads that discourage people from getting vaccinations. Will they ban WHO’s chief scientist Soumya Swaminathan for declaring on Monday that there was “no evidence to be confident [vaccine] shots prevent transmission” of Covid? Google sought to suppress any doubts about lockdowns: “Most users in English-speaking countries, when they google ‘Great Barrington Declaration’, will not be directed to the declaration itself but to articles that are critical of the declaration,” a Spiked-Online analysis noted.

This year’s presidential election put a helluva dent in the credo that politicians rule with the “consent of the governed.” The pandemic provided the pretext to radically change voting procedures, spurring 65 million mostly unverified mail-in ballots. The New York Times warned in 2012 that “fraud in voting by mail is… vastly more prevalent than the in-person voting fraud that has attracted far more attention.” Many states solved that problem by “defining down fraud” and expunging the verification procedures previously used to routinely invalidate 20% or more of mailed-in ballots. The controversies around mail-in ballots, questionable software, ballot harvesting, and other practices mean that a record number of Americans will doubt Joe Biden’s legitimacy even before he takes his oath of office.

Perhaps the saddest casualty of 2020 is the myth that average Americans cherish their personal freedom. Politicians continually shifted the rationale for lockdowns – from flattening the curve, to ending “community spread,” to reducing cases to near zero. Regardless of the proclaimed rationale, most people submitted without a fight, and usually without even a whimper. Politicians and bureaucrats fanned mass fears which quickly ripened into hatred of anyone who did not comply with the latest edict.

States and cities across the country set up snitch lines that were soon deluged with complaints of people outside without a mask, meeting friends, or having more visitors in their homes than could fit in a phone booth. Many, if not most, people quickly acquiesced to the “new normal” where any government hack who recited the phrase “science and data” became entitled to rule their lives with an iron fist.

As the Harvard International Review warned, “The very methods that liberal democracies are currently using to effectively fight the virus are the same tactics that authoritarian leaders use to dominate their people. The tools that have been temporarily deployed in the fight against a once-in-a-lifetime disease may become permanent.” That was written on May 23, more than 15 million Covid cases ago – proof of the failure of lockdowns and pervasive restrictions to make Covid-19 vanish. But the miserable batting average of officialdom will vanish into the Memory Hole if politicians launch a campaign to make Covid vaccinations mandatory, complete with boundless vilification of anyone who balks at the injection.

Perhaps it has long been a myth that we live in a self-governing republic rather than a Leviathan Democracy where citizens merely make cameo appearances every few years at the voting booth. It is still possible that the catastrophic and pointless losses imposed by Covid crackdowns will finally awaken enough people to their growing subjugation. But the most dangerous myth is that Americans will finally become safe after they cease making any efforts to leash their rulers.

The post The Year in which Comforting American Myths Were Ravaged first appeared on SHTF Plan – When It Hits The Fan, Don’t Say We Didn’t Warn You.

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Here’s A Breakdown Of Everything Inside The $900BN Stimulus Bill, And What It Means For The US Economy

This article was originally published by Tyler Durden at ZeroHedge.

Within hours, Congress is set to vote on (and pass) a $900 billion Covid-19 aid bill that includes assistance for households and businesses, as well as funding for vaccine distribution and more. As discussed previously, the bill excludes the Republican priority of liability protections for businesses and other entities and left the key Democrat demand of state and local bailouts.

In a nutshell, the new package extends federal UI programs (e.g. PUA, PEUC) with an extra $300/week for all UI claimants for at least an additional 11 weeks.

It also sends another round of stimulus checks worth $600 per individual per household for those making less than $75k ($150k for married couples) and gradually phases out at higher incomes. The bill renews funding for PPP to support small businesses and provides targeted aid to transportation and other hard-hit sectors of the economy.  Similar to the prior bipartisan proposal, $325bn would go to small businesses’ support, including $284bn for the second round of PPP grants. Of note: the bill also allows businesses to deduct expenses paid with the first round of loans, which the Treasury had previously disallowed (i.e., a double-dip). With around $525bn in forgivable PPP loans issued and more coming, this looks likely to reduce tax receipts by tens of billions and possibly more than $100bn, though it depends on the profitability of the businesses that received the loans

Here are the details of what is in the legislation.

Workers and Households

Direct Payments: The legislation would authorize a second round of economic-impact payments, following the checks Americans received in the spring and summer, at a cost of $166 billion. Households would receive $600 for each adult and $600 for each dependent, instead of $1,200 and $500, respectively, in the first round. Mixed-status households, where some people are ineligible noncitizens, would get payments based on the number of eligible people in the households, as opposed to being shut out as they were in the first round.

The payments would be based on income from 2019 and begin phasing out for individuals with adjusted gross incomes over $75,000 and married couples over $150,000. Treasury Secretary Steven Mnuchin said Monday that the first electronic payments could reach bank accounts by the beginning of next week. Households whose incomes were too high to qualify or who added dependents in 2020 might not qualify for full payments immediately. But they can request additional money as part of the 2020 tax returns they will file in early 2021.

Jobless Aid: Workers would be eligible for a $300-a-week federal unemployment subsidy. As with the prior aid package enacted in March, gig workers and others who don’t ordinarily qualify for benefits would be eligible for the jobless aid. The money is available through March 14. The legislation would also extend to 50 weeks the amount of time for which workers may claim benefits through both state and federal programs. Most states typically provide 26 weeks of jobless benefits.

The measure also provides an additional $100-a-week subsidy for workers who have both wage and self-employment income but whose basic unemployment benefits don’t take into account their self-employment income. The cost of the enhanced unemployment benefits are projected at $120 billion.

Rental Assistance: The bill provides $25 billion of assistance to tenants in arrears on their rent. It also extends until the end of January 2021 a federal eviction prohibition, which the incoming Biden administration may extend again. The Treasury Department would be responsible for dispersing the rental assistance to states via a formula based on population. Landlords and building owners can apply on behalf of tenants meeting the eligibility requirements, generally those who make less than 80% of median income in their area, have at least one person in their households who has lost a job and can demonstrate they are at risk of losing their home.

Covid response

Health Care: The bill includes $9 billion for health-care providers and $4.5 billion for mental health, as well as more than $1 billion for the National Institutes of Health to conduct Covid-19 research.

Schools: The bill provides $82 billion for public and private K-12 schools, as well as colleges. Of that, the bulk would go to a $54.3 billion fund for public schools, while $22.7 billion would go to public and private higher education.

Testing and Tracing: States would receive $22 billion for testing, tracing and Covid-19 mitigation programs. Of this, $2.5 billion would be sent as grants targeting rural areas and communities of color.

Vaccines: States and federal agencies would receive funding for vaccine distribution. About $20 billion would go to the Biomedical Advanced Research and Development Authority, or Barda, for procuring vaccines and therapeutics. Nearly $9 billion would go to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention and states for further distribution of the vaccine, and $3 billion is designated for the national stockpile. Included in those sums is $300 million that is directed to go to high-risk areas and to communities of color.

Businesses

Airlines: Tens of thousands of airline employees would get their jobs back, at least for a few months, under the new bill, which includes $15 billion to cover airline salaries and benefits through the end of March. The bill also includes $1 billion for airline contractor payrolls. Airlines received $25 billion under the Cares Act in the spring to cover workers’ pay and benefits, and in exchange agreed not to lay off or furlough employees until Oct. 1. As that date neared without much improvement in their outlook, carriers and labor unions warned that job cuts would be coming and pleaded for another round of aid. When it didn’t arrive in time, they furloughed tens of thousands of workers, including 19,000 at American Airlines Group Inc. and over 13,000 at United Airlines Holdings Inc. The bill also includes $2 billion for airports and airport-based businesses.

Banks: The bill would provide $12 billion in support to small lenders focused on low-income and minority communities, buttressing minority-owned banks and firms known as community financial development institutions.

Entertainment Venues: The bill has $15 billion for independent movie theaters, live entertainment venues and cultural institutions.

Farms: The U.S. agriculture sector is set for another multibillion-dollar injection in the new relief bill, which directs $13 billion to crop farmers, cattle ranchers and rural communities. The new aid would come on top of roughly $46 billion that the U.S. Department of Agriculture projects the federal government will directly pay to the nation’s farmers this year, a record. That sum includes previous Covid-19 relief for farmers who had to plow up fields of produce ordinarily destined for restaurants, as well as hog producers who had to euthanize livestock because of pandemic-driven shutdowns at meatpacking plants.

Rail and transit: The bill would provide $1 billion in relief funds to Amtrak, aimed at helping the national passenger railroad avoid further layoffs and furloughs of its workers. Amtrak receives a regular operating subsidy of around $2 billion a year from the federal government, but its ticket revenue was devastated by the pandemic and lockdown orders. Ridership on some routes fell by more than 90% this year. The company says it will need a total of $4.9 billion in relief aid to get through the remainder of the year without deeper worker and service cuts. The bill also sets aside $14 billion for transit systems, many of which are considering major cuts in service and layoffs. In New York City alone, elected officials say they need an immediate $4.5 billion infusion to stave off severe reductions in subway and bus service. The bill also sets aside $2 billion for the bus industry and $10 billion for state highways.

Small Business: The $325 billion allotted to help small businesses includes $284 billion for first and second forgivable Paycheck Protection Program loans, and expands eligibility for local newspapers and TV and radio broadcasters. The bill also includes $20 billion for Economic Injury Disaster Loans. Businesses that received PPP loans would be able to take tax deductions for the expenses covered by forgiven loans, overcoming objections from Mr. Mnuchin. The provision would save businesses about $200 billion, according to an estimate from Adam Looney of the Brookings Institution. But it doesn’t count as part of the overall cost of the legislation.

U.S. Postal Service: The bill loosens some of the strings imposed on the U.S. Postal Service from the Cares Act, which provided a $10 billion Treasury loan after terms were negotiated. The bill would still provide $10 billion to the financially strained institution, but the Postal Service wouldn’t be required to repay it, and the conditions imposed by the Treasury wouldn’t apply. In exchange, the bill would require the Postal Service to provide more information to Congress, including a plan about its long-term financial solvency, within 180 days of the bill’s passing and information about how it plans to use the funds in reports to the Postal Regulatory Commission.

Taxes: Aside from the PPP break, the bill would extend a tax credit for struggling employers who keep workers on the payroll, and it would let recipients of certain tax credits qualify based on their 2019 incomes; in some cases, lower 2020 incomes could reduce their eligibility. The bill would also temporarily extend tax breaks for renewable energy, including incentives for wind energy and carbon capture. It also includes deductions for business meals, a provision that President Trump backed but that faced criticism from Democrats as a subsidy for three-martini lunches and indoor dining during a pandemic. Lower excise taxes on beer, wine and spirits that were set to expire Dec. 31 will be permanently extended, and tax incentives for investing in low-income areas and hiring workers from disadvantaged groups would be extended for five years.

* * *

Economic Impact

Based on cost estimates of the various provisions and applying the corresponding fiscal multipliers (Chart 1), Bank of America estimates that the new stimulus package will contribute approximately 2.7% to growth in 2021. The bank now expects that more of the stimulus impact will be frontloaded into 1Q (Chart 2). The start of the year has cross currents with weaker economic data but an earlier and more targeted fiscal stimulus (we had expected passage after inauguration). On balance, the bank now sees upside risk to the bank’s forecast of 1% GDP growth in 1Q.

One final point: no more stimulus?

As we reported last week, Goldman’s economists believe that this is the last major COVID-focused fiscal package. Assuming that President-elect Biden is facing a divided Congress next year, this looks likely to be the last fiscal package that Congress passes worth several hundred billion dollars or more (as by 2021 covid vaccines will be widely distributed making the passage of another broad-based stimulus virtually impossible). That said, Goldman does expect another debate over fiscal support in Q1, ahead of the expiration of the extended unemployment provisions in March. However, since Congress left the most difficult issues out of the current package, it seems unlikely that lawmakers will be able to agree on those in subsequent legislation. Of course, this would likely change if Democrats win both Senate seats in Georgia on January 5 and reach 50 seats in the Senate. In that scenario, Goldman would expect at least another few hundred billion in additional fiscal measures, including aid to states.

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Finnish Data Theft and Extortion

The Finnish psychotherapy clinic Vastaamo was the victim of a data breach and theft. The criminals tried extorting money from the clinic. When that failed, they started extorting money from the patients:

Neither the company nor Finnish investigators have released many details about the nature of the breach, but reports say the attackers initially sought a payment of about 450,000 euros to protect about 40,000 patient records. The company reportedly did not pay up. Given the scale of the attack and the sensitive nature of the stolen data, the case has become a national story in Finland. Globally, attacks on health care organizations have escalated as cybercriminals look for higher-value targets.

[…]

Vastaamo said customers and employees had “personally been victims of extortion” in the case. Reports say that on Oct. 21 and Oct. 22, the cybercriminals began posting batches of about 100 patient records on the dark web and allowing people to pay about 500 euros to have their information taken down.

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Cities Across The Country Board Up Windows Ahead Of The Election

 

Many cities are anticipating election chaos and violence after the election takes place on Tuesday, so business owners have been boarding up their windows to prevent as much damage as possible. Small businesses are being systematically destroyed and this could be the end for so many more.

Regardless of the outcome, businesses are concerned about the public’s response to the winner. From San Francisco to New York, major cities are taking precautions and shuttering their doors and windows to prevent theft and damages. After a spring of economically disastrous lockdowns and a summer of protests, looting, and rioting, storefront businesses across the country are bracing for a potential wave of social unrest related to the election.

In Chicago, several businesses along the Michigan Avenue shopping district have boarded up their windows in preparation for Election Day, Adam Skaf, a spokesperson for the Magnificent Mile Association, told NBC News. The group also partnered with the city government to participate in an auxiliary command center on Election Day, when it will share real-time information to businesses.

Walmart has also taken a controversial step. The store said this week it would remove all guns and ammunition from its sales floors as a precaution, after seeing some “isolated civil unrest.” Walmart announced Friday it had reversed that decision, however.

Another Secret Model: A Contested 2020 Election

While President Donald Trump has repeatedly suggested that he will refuse to participate in a peaceful transition of power in the event he loses to former Vice President Joe Biden, Hillary Clinton and others have suggested the Joe Biden refuse to concede no matter what.

This election has been promised to be chaotic at best. Prepare for the worst while hoping for the best.  You cannot control the actions of others, but you can prepare for the rabid hoards of people that are likely to take to the streets the night of the election and for days, if not weeks afterward. Be where you want to be and make sure you are safe. This has been promised to be ugly, and with so many Americans impoverished thanks to lockdowns, people are going to feel backed into a corner, and they may think fighting is the only way out. 

Texas Governor Orders 1,000 Troops For “Post-Election Disturbances”

Don’t Vote for a Psychopath: Tyranny at the Hands of a Psychopathic Government

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There Is A Solution To Big Tech Censorship – But No Politician Will Touch It

This article was originally published by Brandon Smith at Alt-Market.us. 

The issue of censorship by major tech companies is a precarious one, and I’m becoming increasingly suspicious of the nature of the debate. There are some complexities, but it can all be boiled down to this:

Big tech social media conglomerates argue that their websites are like any other private business and that they are protected from overt government interference by the US constitution. In other words, they have a right to platform or de-platform anyone they choose. Of course, this is the exact OPPOSITE of what most leftist groups have argued in the past when it comes to private businesses refusing to cooperate with people they disagree with on basic principle, such as LGBT activists, but let’s set that hypocrisy aside for now.

Social media companies have decided that the people they want to de-platform most are conservatives, along with anyone else who disagrees with hard-left ideologies such as social justice or the handling of the pandemic situation. Statements or content that run contrary to leftist philosophies are simply labeled “hate speech” or “conspiracy theory” and are erased.

Conservatives argue that big tech is a monopoly with far too much power, that social media should be treated more like a public resource or “town square” and that these companies are violating the free speech rights of conservatives by specifically targeting them for censorship. Many conservatives are also demanding that Donald Trump and the government step in to regulate or punish such companies for these actions.

The truth is that both sides are right, and both sides are wrong. The real solution to the problem requires a radical change in how we view the institution of corporations and how they interact with government, and it’s a solution I doubt ANY political official will consider, and that includes Trump.

Let me explain…

Social media and big tech do in fact represent a monopoly, but not in terms most people are familiar with. Instead of acting only as an economic monopoly controlling market share, big tech is also a political monopoly controlling the majority of communication platforms. If only one political and social ideological group dominates every major social media and digital information outlet, this in my view represents a completely unbalanced power dynamic that does indeed threaten the free speech rights of the populace.

Rabid censorship of the Hunter Biden laptop scandal, a scandal that is supported by facts and evidence that big tech has chosen to bury because it’s inconvenient to them rather than a violation of their community guidelines, is just one more example of the incredible danger that social media monopolies present.

Obviously, there is the issue of private property rights to consider. I fully support and defend private property rights and I do believe that a business has the freedom to refuse service to anyone for any reason. Just because you open your doors to the public does not mean the public now owns your labor. You should have the right to refuse labor whenever you wish.

If a business refuses a customer based merely on personal bias, then word is going to get around quickly and that business may lose a large number of potential buyers in the future (this is happening right now with multiple alternative social media companies on the rise). The free market should determine the fate of that business, not state or federal governments.

Government itself is an untrustworthy entity that craves a monopoly of power, and by handing government the authority to micromanage the policies and internal practices of web companies we might be trading the big tech monster for an even more dangerous governmental monster.

Who is to say that the government will stop with sites like Facebook or Twitter or Google? Maybe they will exploit their newfound powers to go after smaller websites as well. Maybe they will attempt to micromanage the entire internet. Maybe they will start dominating and restricting conservative websites instead of the leftist conglomerates we intended, and then we will be doubly screwed.

If you value freedom and the Bill of Rights, then this debate leaves us at an impasse. Both sides (perhaps conveniently) lead to a totalitarian outcome. The thing is, the publicly presented argument is a contrived one, a manipulated discussion that only presents two sides when there are more options to consider. The narrative is fixed, it is a farce.

The public has been led to believe that government and corporations are separate tools that can be used to keep each side in check. This is a lie. Big government and big corporations have always worked together while pretending to be disconnected, and this needs to stop if we are to ever defuse the political time bomb we now face.

To solve the social media censorship debacle we need to examine the very roots of corporations as entities. First, corporations as we know them today are a relatively new phenomenon. Adam Smith described the concept of a corporation as a “joint-stock company” in his treatise ‘The Wealth Of Nations’, and stood against them as a threat to free-market economics. He specifically outlined their history of monopoly and failure, and criticized their habit of avoiding responsibility for mistakes and crimes.

Joint-stock companies were chartered by governments and given special protections from risk, as well as protection from civil litigation (lawsuits). But, they were supposed to be temporary business entities, not perpetual business entities. The point was to allow for the creation of a joint-stock company to finish a particular job, such as building a railroad, and once the job was finished the company was dissolved and the government protections were no longer needed. Smith knew that if corporations were ever allowed to become permanent fixtures in an economy, they would result in disaster.

This is exactly what happened in 1886 when the Supreme Court allowed companies like Southern Pacific Railroad to use the 14th Amendment, which was supposed to protect the constitutional rights of newly freed slaves, as a loophole to declare corporations as “legal persons” with all the protections of an individual citizen. Not only that, but with limited liability, corporations actually became super-citizens with protections far beyond normal individuals. Corporations became the preeminent force in the world and it was their relationship with governments that made this possible.

This fact completely debunks today’s notion of what constitutes free markets. Corporations ARE NOT free market structures. They are, in fact, government-chartered and government-protected monopolies. They are SOCIALIST creations, not free-market creations, and therefore they should not exist in a free market society at all.

The alternative option to corporations was for businesses to form “partnerships”, which did not enjoy protection from government, limited liability or the ability to form monopolies. When the owners of a partnership committed a crime, they could be personally held liable for that crime. When a corporation commits a crime, only the company as a vaporous faceless entity can be punished. This is why it is very rare to see company CEOs face prosecution no matter how egregious and catastrophic their actions.

Today, certain corporations continue to enjoy government protections while also enjoying government welfare. Meaning, these companies get a legal shield while also basking in the advantage of tax incentives and taxpayer dollars.

For example, Google (Alphabet and YouTube) has long received huge tax breaks and is rarely if ever forced to pay in full for the massive bandwidth the company uses. In fact, YouTube was facing bandwidth affordability issues until it was purchased by Alphabet and Google, then it no longer had to worry about it – Google gets over 21 times more bandwidth than it actually pays for because of government intervention.

The same rules apply to companies like Twitter, Facebook, Netflix, Apple, etc. All of them enjoy extensive tax breaks as well as cheap bandwidth that makes it impossible for small and medium-sized businesses to compete, even if they operate on a superior model or have superior ideas. Many times the corporations pay no taxes whatsoever while smaller businesses are crippled by overt payments.

A truly free market requires competition as a rule, but the current system deliberately crushes the competition. Again, we live in a socialist framework, not a free market framework.

Now that we understand the nature of big tech and what these companies actually are (creations of government), the debate on social media censorship changes.

How? Take for example the fact that public universities in the US are not legally allowed to interfere with free speech rights because many of them survive by consuming taxpayer dollars. They are PUBLIC institutions, not private. Why then are we treating major corporations that survive on endless taxpayer infusions and incentives as if they are private businesses? They are not – They are publicly funded structures chartered by the government and therefore they should be subject to the same rules on free speech that universities are required to follow.

Said corporations will surely argue against this and will attempt to use legal chicanery to maintain their monopolies. Trying to dismantle them could take decades, and there are no guarantees that government officials will even make the attempt? Why would they? The relationship between government and corporations has been an advantageous one for establishment elites for decades.

Instead of challenging the corporate model in the Supreme Court, an easier option would be to simply take away all welfare and tax incentives for any big tech companies that refuse to allow free speech on their platforms. If Google had to pay normal price for the bandwidth it uses, the corporation would either implode or it would be forced to break apart into multiple smaller companies that would then compete with each other. More competition means lower prices for consumers along with better products. The threat of losing tax incentives would mean more large companies would refrain from censorship.

Donald Trump as president could conceivably make this happen, but he will not, and neither will any other political official. The partnership between government and corporations will continue, I believe because there are other agendas at play here. The establishment WANTS the public to argue in favor of tech totalitarianism on one side and in favor of government totalitarianism on the other side. They aren’t going to allow any other solutions to enter the discussion.

The only available strategy left for fighting back against big tech is to continue leaving their platforms and building our own. This will take many years to accomplish. The point is, there is a more permanent option, but it requires a complete deconstruction of the socialist government/corporate framework now in place. To confront the power dynamic between governments and major conglomerates is to confront one of the fundamental sources of corruption within our society, which is why it won’t be allowed. And when the system refuses to police itself, public upheaval becomes inevitable.

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The Election Has Already Been Hijacked and the Winner Decided: ‘We the People’ Lose

This article was originally published by John W. Whitehead at The Rutherford Institute.

“Free election of masters does not abolish the masters or the slaves.” ? Herbert Marcuse

Republicans and Democrats alike fear that the other party will attempt to hijack this election.

President Trump is convinced that mail-in ballots are a scam except in Florida, where it’s safe to vote by mail because of its “great Republican governor.”

The FBI is worried about foreign hackers continuing to target and exploit vulnerabilities in the nation’s electoral system, sowing distrust about the parties, the process, and the outcome.

I, on the other hand, am not overly worried: after all, the voting booths have already been hijacked by a political elite comprised of Republicans and Democrats who are determined to retain power at all costs.

The outcome is a foregone conclusion: the Deep State will win and “we the people” will lose.

The damage has already been done.

The Department of Homeland Security (DHS), which has been tasked with helping to “secure” the elections and protect the nation against cyberattacks, is not exactly an agency known for its adherence to freedom principles.

After all, this is the agency largely responsible for turning the American republic into a police state. Since its creation, the DHS has ushered in the domestic use of surveillance drones, expanded the reach of fusion centers, stockpiled an alarming amount of ammunition (including hollow-point bullets), urged Americans to become snitches through a “see something, say something” campaign, overseen the fumbling antics of TSA agents everywhere, militarized the nation’s police, spied on activists and veterans, distributed license plate readers and cell phone trackers to law enforcement agencies, contracted to build detention camps, carried out military drills and lockdowns in American cities, conducted virtual strip searches of airline passengers, established Constitution-free border zones, funded city-wide surveillance cameras, and undermined the Fourth Amendment at every turn.

So, no, I’m not losing a night’s sleep over the thought that this election might by any more rigged than it already is.

And I’m not holding my breath in the hopes that the winner of this year’s popularity contest will save us from government surveillance, weaponized drones, militarized police, endless wars, SWAT team raids, asset forfeiture schemes, overcriminalization, profit-driven private prisons, graft, and corruption, or any of the other evils that masquerade as official government business these days.

You see, after years of trying to wake Americans up to the reality that there is no political savior who will save us from the police state, I’ve come to realize that Americans want to engage in the reassurance ritual of voting.

They want to believe the fantasy that politics matter.

They want to be persuaded that there’s a difference between the Republicans and Democrats (there’s not).

Some will swear that Donald Trump has been an improvement on Barack Obama (he is not).

Others are convinced that Joe Biden’s values are different from Donald Trump’s (with both of them, money talks).

Most of all, voters want to buy into the fantasy that when they elect a president, they’re getting someone who truly represents the citizenry rather than the Deep State (in fact, in the oligarchy that is the American police state, an elite group of wealthy donors is calling the shots in cooperation with a political elite).

The sad truth is that it doesn’t matter who wins the White House because they all work for the same boss: Corporate America. Understanding this, many corporations hedge their bets on who will win the White House by splitting their donations between Democratic and Republican candidates.

Politics is a game, a joke, a hustle, a con, a distraction, a spectacle, a sport, and for many devout Americans, a religion. It is a political illusion aimed at persuading the citizenry that we are free, that our vote counts, and that we actually have some control over the government when in fact, we are prisoners of a Corporate Elite.

In other words, it’s a sophisticated ruse aimed at keeping us divided and fighting over two parties whose priorities, more often than not, are exactly the same so that we don’t join forces and do what the Declaration of Independence suggests, which is to throw the whole lot out and start over.

It’s no secret that both parties support endless war, engage in out-of-control spending, ignore the citizenry’s basic rights, have no respect for the rule of law, are bought and paid for by Big Business, care most about their own power, and have a long record of expanding government and shrinking liberty. Most of all, both parties enjoy an intimate, incestuous history with each other and with the moneyed elite that rule this country.

Despite the jabs the candidates volley at each other for the benefit of the cameras, they’re a relatively chummy bunch away from the spotlight. Moreover, despite Congress’ so-called political gridlock, our elected officials seem to have no trouble finding common ground when it’s time to collectively kowtow to the megacorporations, lobbyists, defense contractors, and other special interest groups to whom they have pledged their true allegiance.

So don’t be fooled by the smear campaigns and name-calling or drawn into their divide-and-conquer politics of hate. They’re just useful tactics that have been proven to engage voters and increase voter turnout while keeping the citizenry at each other’s throats.

It’s all a grand illusion.

It used to be that the cogs, wheels, and gear shifts in the government machinery worked to keep the republic running smoothly. However, without our fully realizing it, the mechanism has changed. Its purpose is no longer to keep our republic running smoothly. To the contrary, this particular contraption’s purpose is to keep the Deep State in power. Its various parts are already a corrupt part of the whole.

Just consider how insidious, incestuous, and beholden to the corporate elite the various “parts” of the mechanism have become.

Congress. Perhaps the most notorious offenders and most obvious culprits in the creation of the corporate-state, Congress has proven itself to be both inept and avaricious, oblivious champions of an authoritarian system that is systematically dismantling their constituents’ fundamental rights. Long before they’re elected, Congressmen are trained to dance to the tune of their wealthy benefactors, so much so that they spend two-thirds of their time in office raising money. As Reuters reports, “For many lawmakers, the daily routine in Washington involves fundraising as much as legislating. The culture of nonstop political campaigning shapes the rhythms of daily life in Congress, as well as the landscape around the Capitol. It also means that lawmakers often spend more time listening to the concerns of the wealthy than anyone else.”

The President. What Americans want in a president and what they need are two very different things. The making of a popular president is an exercise in branding, marketing, and creating alternate realities for the consumer—a.k.a., the citizenry—that allows them to buy into a fantasy about life in America that is utterly divorced from our increasingly grim reality. Take President Trump, for instance, who got elected by promising to drain the swamp in Washington DC. Instead of putting an end to the corruption, however, Trump has paved the way for lobbyists, corporations, the military-industrial complex, and the rest of the Deep State (also referred to as “The 7th Floor Group”) to feast on the carcass of the dying American republic. The lesson: to be a successful president, it doesn’t matter whether you keep your campaign promises, sell the American people to the highest bidder, or march in lockstep with the Corporate State as long as you keep telling people what they most want to hear.

The Supreme Court. The U.S. Supreme Court—once the last refuge of justice, the one governmental body really capable of rolling back the slowly emerging tyranny enveloping America—has instead become the champion of the American police state, absolving government and corporate officials of their crimes while relentlessly punishing the average American for exercising his or her rights. Like the rest of the government, the Court has routinely prioritized profit, security, and convenience over the basic rights of the citizenry. Indeed, law professor Erwin Chemerinsky makes a compelling case that the Supreme Court, whose “justices have overwhelmingly come from positions of privilege,” almost unerringly throughout its history sides with the wealthy, the privileged, and the powerful.

The Media. Of course, this triumvirate of total control would be completely ineffective without a propaganda machine provided by the world’s largest corporations. Besides shoveling drivel down our throats at every possible moment, the so-called news agencies which are supposed to act as bulwarks against government propaganda have instead become the mouthpieces of the state. The pundits which pollute our airwaves are at best court jesters and at worst propagandists for the false reality created by the American government. When you have internet and media giants such as Google, NBC Universal, News Corporation, Turner Broadcasting, Thomson Reuters, Comcast, Time Warner, Viacom, Public Radio International, and The Washington Post Company donating to political candidates, you no longer have an independent media—what we used to refer to as the “fourth estate”—that can be trusted to hold the government accountable.

The American People. “We the people” now belong to a permanent underclass in America. It doesn’t matter what you call us—chattel, slaves, worker bees, it’s all the same—what matters is that we are expected to march in lockstep with and submit to the will of the state in all matters, public and private. Unfortunately, through our complicity in matters large and small, we have allowed an out-of-control corporate-state apparatus to take over every element of American society.

We’re playing against a stacked deck.

The game is rigged, and “we the people” keep getting dealt the same losing hand. The people dealing the cards—the politicians, the corporations, the judges, the prosecutors, the police, the bureaucrats, the military, the media, etc.—have only one prevailing concern, and that is to maintain their power and control over the citizenry while milking us of our money and possessions.

It really doesn’t matter what you call them—Republicans, Democrats, the 1%, the elite, the controllers, the masterminds, the shadow government, the police state, the surveillance state, the military-industrial complex—so long as you understand that while they are dealing the cards, the deck will always be stacked in their favor.

As I make clear in my book, Battlefield America: The War on the American People, our failure to remain informed about what is taking place in our government, to know and exercise our rights, to vocally protest, to demand accountability on the part of our government representatives, and at a minimum to care about the plight of our fellow Americans has been our downfall.

Now we find ourselves once again caught up in the spectacle of another presidential election, and once again the majority of Americans are acting as if this election will make a difference and bring about change. As if the new boss will be different from the old boss.

When in doubt, just remember what the astute commentator George Carlin had to say about the matter:

The politicians are put there to give you the idea that you have freedom of choice. You don’t. You have no choice. You have owners. They own you. They own everything. They own all the important land. They own and control the corporations. They’ve long since bought and paid for the Senate, the Congress, the state houses, the city halls. They got the judges in their back pockets and they own all the big media companies, so they control just about all of the news and information you get to hear. They got you by the balls. They spend billions of dollars every year lobbying. Lobbying to get what they want. Well, we know what they want. They want more for themselves and less for everybody else, but I’ll tell you what they don’t want. They don’t want a population of citizens capable of critical thinking. They don’t want well-informed, well-educated people capable of critical thinking. They’re not interested in that. That doesn’t help them. That’s against their interests. They want obedient workers. Obedient workers, people who are just smart enough to run the machines and do the paperwork…. It’s a big club and you ain’t in it. You and I are not in the big club. …The table is tilted, folks. The game is rigged and nobody seems to notice…. Nobody seems to care. That’s what the owners count on…. It’s called the American Dream, ’cause you have to be asleep to believe it.

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NASDAQ NOSEDIVES: Can You Handle THE HEAT?

This article was contributed by Tom Beck of Portfolio Wealth Global.

We warned all throughout the MONTH of AUGUST that markets just don’t accept the REALITY of VALUATIONS anymore and one week afterward, the S&P 500 and NASDAQ peaked and have since entered a correction (NASDAQ for now).

Historically, as we explained, September is the market’s WORST MONTH, but this is getting even more SCREWED UP since Europe is considering a second quarantine period while elections in the U.S., which are the BIGGEST UNKNOWN, are rapidly approaching.

Listen closely: Americans are so programmed by propaganda ON BOTH ENDS of the spectrum that the questions asked to everyday citizens reflect the SERIOUS NUMBNESS of the average voter:

 

Courtesy: Zerohedge.com

As you can see, the RACE IS TIGHT and the stakes are high!

Yesterday, I watched the amazing documentary “The Social Dilemma,” which proves beyond any shadow of a doubt what the business model incentives of social media giants are, and it will be them that DECIDE THE OUTCOME of this presidential run come November.

Between now and then, here’s what could HELP TRUMP, and below that is what could help BIDEN:

  1. Vaccine news – the cure will obviously be positive for Donald Trump, who will RIDE THE COATTAILS, taking credit for the record-fast approval process.
  2. Quarantines and school closures – I have no doubt that Democratic states are going to MAKE LIFE a living hell for residents because they must show Trump’s inadequacy with containing the pandemic.
  3. Debates – obviously, the more we allow these two TO CONFRONT each other, the more Trump has a chance to shine.
  4. Social unrest – if chaos returns, police defunding claims will bring voters to Trump, who is against it. Police brutality, on the other hand, indirectly helps Biden.

Courtesy: Zerohedge.com

For now, markets are still IN SHOCK that Trump’s approval ratings aren’t what they were pre-COVID-19. In January, no one predicted a close race, so I believe that if Biden’s chances are real, it could be AN INITIAL re-rating of equities downwards due to the high probability of higher corporate taxes.

So, when looking at this -12% correction in the NASDAQ, don’t assume it has anything to do with the presidency because it doesn’t.

Prices of equities are TOO HIGH and it’s dawning on institutional investors that they can invest in the recovery by going LONG the beaten-down industries, thus leaving the “bubble territory” to the retail public to MESS WITH.

Now, after the dynamite has exploded, we believe institutions will use stink bids and get back into tech.

We sure are exploring the matter using THIS new watch list.

After already being out of the woods, the SECOND-WAVE mentality that is taking over is depressing and I expect many controversies in the COMING MONTHS.

Lastly, we’re working on a BIG ALERT that you don’t want to miss, so stay focused on what’s coming.

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Insider Attack on the Carnegie Library

Greg Priore, the person in charge of the rare book room at the Carnegie Library, stole from it for almost two decades before getting caught.

It’s a perennial problem: trusted insiders have to be trusted.

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Insider Attack on the Carnegie Library

Greg Priore, the person in charge of the rare book room at the Carnegie Library, stole from it for almost two decades before getting caught.

It’s a perennial problem: trusted insiders have to be trusted.

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Insiders Intelwars Theft

Insider Attack on the Carnegie Library

Greg Priore, the person in charge of the rare book room at the Carnegie Library, stole from it for almost two decades before getting caught.

It’s a perennial problem: trusted insiders have to be trusted.

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Alabama Crime Intelwars prescription drugs Theft

Police arrest suspected thief after she reportedly bragged about her crime on Facebook Live

Police busted a woman accused of stealing prescription pills in Mobile, Alabama, last week after she reportedly bragged about the theft on Facebook, authorities said.

Brieana Allen, 25, might have gotten away with her alleged crime if she hadn’t felt the need to boast about it on social media.

According to WALA-TV, police responded to a late-night call Wednesday, Aug. 19, reporting an altercation near the 2600 block of Dauphin Island Parkway. Upon arrival, officers reportedly spoke with a male victim who claimed that he had been robbed by Allen and that she had taken prescription pills from his vehicle.

He then told officers that Allen had posted a Facebook Live video bragging about the incident.

At this point, Allen actually called police to another location to tell them her side of the story, but when officers arrived they said they found the stolen prescription pills inside her purse.

Allen was promptly arrested and now faces charges of unlawful breaking and entering a vehicle, possession of a controlled substance, and illegal possession of prescription drugs.

At the time of this article’s publication, the live video allegedly posted by Allen could not be found on her Facebook account and was likely removed by the user.

Another post indicates that she has retained a lawyer to fight the charges, but this information has not been confirmed.

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Anger anti government extremists Antifa better off without politicians Boogaloo Dissenters Domestic terrorist duty excessive taxation Government Headline News human rights Intelwars MILITARY INDUSTRIAL COMPLEX mobs oppression rebellion rights rights aren't gifts from government speak up stand up suppression Theft Truth tyranny Violence War William Barr

America’s Revolutionary Founders Would Be Anti-Government Extremists Today

This article was originally published by John W. Whitehead at The Rutherford Institute. 

“It is the duty of the patriot to protect his country from its government.”—Thomas Paine

“When the government violates the people’s rights, insurrection is, for the people and for each portion of the people, the most sacred of the rights and the most indispensable of duties.”—Marquis De Lafayette

Had the Declaration of Independence been written today, it would have rendered its signers extremists or terrorists, resulting in them being placed on a government watch list, targeted for surveillance of their activities and correspondence, and potentially arrested, held indefinitely, stripped of their rights and labeled enemy combatants.

This is no longer the stuff of speculation and warning.

In fact, Attorney General William Barr recently announced plans to target, track and surveil “anti-government extremists” and preemptively nip in the bud any “threats” to public safety and the rule of law.

It doesn’t matter that the stated purpose of Barr’s anti-government extremist task force is to investigate dissidents on the far right (the “boogaloo” movement) and far left (Antifa, a loosely organized anti-fascist group) who have been accused of instigating violence and disrupting peaceful protests.

Boogaloo and Antifa have given the government the perfect excuse for declaring war (with all that entails: surveillance, threat assessments, pre-crime, etc.) against so-called anti-government extremists.

Without a doubt, America’s revolutionary founders would have been at the top of Barr’s list.

After all, the people who fomented the American Revolution spoke out at rallies, distributed critical pamphlets, wrote scathing editorials, and took to the streets in protest. They were rebelling against a government they saw as being excessive in its taxation and spending. For their efforts, they were demonized and painted as an angry mob, extremists akin to terrorists, by the ruler of the day, King George III.

Of course, it doesn’t take much to be considered an anti-government extremist (a.k.a. domestic terrorist) today.

If you believe in and exercise your rights under the Constitution (namely, your right to speak freely, worship freely, associate with like-minded individuals who share your political views, criticize the government, own a weapon, demand a warrant before being questioned or searched by the police, or any other activity viewed as potentially anti-government, racist, bigoted, anarchic or sovereign), you’re at the top of the government’s terrorism watch list.

Indeed, under Barr’s new task force, I and every other individual today who dares to speak truth to power could also be targeted for surveillance, because what we’re really dealing with is a government that wants to suppress dangerous words—words about its warring empire, words about its land grabs, words about its militarized police, words about its killing, its poisoning, and its corruption—in order to keep its lies going.

This is how the government plans to snuff out any attempts by “we the people” to stand up to its tyranny: under the pretext of rooting out violent extremists, the government’s anti-extremism program will, in many cases, be utilized to render otherwise lawful, nonviolent activities as potentially extremist.

The danger is real.

Keep in mind that the government agencies involved in ferreting out American “extremists” will carry out their objectives—to identify and deter potential extremists—in concert with fusion centers, data collection agencies, behavioral scientists, corporations, social media, and community organizers and by relying on cutting-edge technology for surveillance, facial recognition, predictive policing, biometrics, and behavioral epigenetics (in which life experiences alter one’s genetic makeup).

This is pre-crime on an ideological scale and it’s been a long time coming.

For example, in 2009, the Department of Homeland Security (DHS) released two reports, one on “Rightwing Extremism,” which broadly defines rightwing extremists as individuals and groups “that are mainly antigovernment, rejecting federal authority in favor of state or local authority, or rejecting government authority entirely,” and one on “Leftwing Extremism,” which labeled environmental and animal rights activist groups as extremists

Incredibly, both reports use the words terrorist and extremist interchangeably

That same year, the DHS launched Operation Vigilant Eagle, which calls for surveillance of military veterans returning from Iraq, Afghanistan and other far-flung places, characterizing them as extremists and potential domestic terrorist threats because they may be “disgruntled, disillusioned or suffering from the psychological effects of war.”

These reports indicate that for the government, anyone seen as opposing the government—whether they’re Left, Right, or somewhere in between—can be labeled an extremist.

Fast forward a few years, and you have the National Defense Authorization Act (NDAA), which Congress has continually re-upped, that allows the military to take you out of your home, lock you up with no access to friends, family or the courts if you’re seen as an extremist.

Now connect the dots, from the 2009 Extremism reports to the NDAA, the National Security Agency’s far-reaching surveillance networks, and fusion centers that collect and share surveillance data between local, state and federal police agencies

Add in tens of thousands of armed, surveillance drones that are beginning to blanket American skies, facial recognition technology that will identify and track you wherever you go and whatever you do. And then to complete the circle, toss in the real-time crime centers being deployed in cities across the country, which will be attempting to “predict” crimes and identify criminals before they happen based on widespread surveillance, complex mathematical algorithms, and prognostication programs.

Hopefully, you’re getting the picture, which is how easy it is for the government to identify, label, and target individuals as “extremists.”

And just like that, we’ve come full circle.

Imagine living in a country where armed soldiers crash through doors to arrest and imprison citizens merely for criticizing government officials. Imagine that in this very same country, you’re watched all the time and if you look even a little bit suspicious, the police stop and frisk you or pull you over to search you on the off chance you’re doing something illegal.

Keep in mind that if you have a firearm of any kind (or anything that resembled a firearm) while in this country, it may get you arrested and, in some circumstances, shot by police.

If you’re thinking this sounds like America today, you wouldn’t be far wrong.

However, the scenario described above took place more than 200 years ago, when American colonists suffered under Great Britain’s version of an early police state. It was only when the colonists finally got fed up with being silenced, censored, searched, frisked, threatened, and arrested that they finally revolted against the tyrant’s fetters

No document better states their grievances than the Declaration of Independence, drafted by Thomas Jefferson.

A document seething with outrage over a government which had betrayed its citizens, the Declaration of Independence was signed on July 4, 1776, by 56 men who laid everything on the line, pledged it all—“our Lives, our Fortunes, and our sacred Honor”—because they believed in a radical idea: that all people are created to be free.

Labeled traitors, these men were charged with treason, a crime punishable by death. For some, their acts of rebellion would cost them their homes and their fortunes. For others, it would be the ultimate price—their lives.

Yet even knowing the heavy price they might have to pay, these men dared to speak up when silence could not be tolerated.

Read the Declaration of Independence again, and ask yourself if the list of complaints tallied by Jefferson don’t bear a startling resemblance to the abuses “we the people” are suffering at the hands of the American police state.

If you find the purple prose used by the Founders hard to decipher, here’s my translation of what the Declaration of Independence would look and sound like if it were written in the modern vernacular:

There comes a time when a populace must stand united and say “enough is enough” to the government’s abuses, even if it means getting rid of the political parties in power. Believing that “we the people” have a natural and divine right to direct our own lives, here are truths about the power of the people and how we arrived at the decision to sever our ties to the government:

All people are created equal. All people possess certain innate rights that no government or agency or individual can take away from them. Among these are the right to Life, Liberty and the pursuit of Happiness. The government’s job is to protect the people’s innate rights to Life, Liberty and the pursuit of Happiness. The government’s power comes from the will of the people.

Whenever any government abuses its power, it is the right of the people to alter or abolish that government and replace it with a new government that will respect and protect the rights of the people. It is not wise to get rid of a government for minor transgressions. In fact, as history has shown, people resist change and are inclined to suffer all manner of abuses to which they have become accustomed. However, when the people have been subjected to repeated abuses and power grabs, carried out with the purpose of establishing a tyrannical government, people have a right and duty to do away with that tyrannical Government and to replace it with a new government that will protect and preserve their innate rights for their future wellbeing.

This is exactly the state of affairs we are suffering under right now, which is why it is necessary that we change this imperial system of government. The history of the present Imperial Government is a history of repeated abuses and power grabs, carried out with the intention of establishing absolute Tyranny over the country.

To prove this, consider the following:

The government has, through its own negligence and arrogance, refused to adopt urgent and necessary laws for the good of the people. The government has threatened to hold up critical laws unless the people agree to relinquish their right to be fully represented in the Legislature.

In order to expand its power and bring about compliance with its dictates, the government has made it nearly impossible for the people to make their views and needs heard by their representatives. The government has repeatedly suppressed protests arising in response to its actions.

The government has obstructed justice by refusing to appoint judges who respect the Constitution and has instead made the Courts march in lockstep with the government’s dictates.

The government has allowed its agents to harass the people, steal from them, jail them and even execute them. The government has directed militarized government agents—a.k.a., a standing army—to police domestic affairs in peacetime. The government has turned the country into a militarized police state.

The government has conspired to undermine the rule of law and the Constitution in order to expand its own powers.

The government has allowed its militarized police to invade our homes and inflict violence on homeowners. The government has failed to hold its agents accountable for wrongdoing and murder under the guise of “qualified immunity.”

The government has jeopardized our international trade agreements. The government has overtaxed us without our permission.

The government has denied us due process and the right to a fair trial. The government has engaged in extraordinary rendition. The government has continued to expand its military empire in collusion with its corporate partners-in-crime and occupy foreign nations.

The government has eroded fundamental legal protections and destabilized the structure of government. The government has not only declared its federal powers superior to those of the states but has also asserted its sovereign power over the rights of “we the people.”

The government has ceased to protect the people and instead waged domestic war against the people. The government has plundered our seas, ravaged our Coasts, and destroyed the lives of the people.

The government has employed private contractors and mercenaries to carry out acts of death, desolation and tyranny against other nations, totally unworthy of a civilized nation. The government through its political propaganda has pitted its citizens against each other. The government has stirred up civil unrest and laid the groundwork for martial law.

Repeatedly, we have asked the government to cease its abuses. Each time, the government has responded with more abuse.

An Imperial Ruler who acts like a tyrant is not fit to govern a free people.

We have repeatedly sounded the alarm to our fellow citizens about the government’s abuses. We have warned them about the government’s power grabs. We have appealed to their sense of justice. We have reminded them of our common bonds. They have rejected our plea for justice and brotherhood. Thus, our fellow citizens are equally at fault for the injustices being carried out by the government.

Thus, for the reasons mentioned above, we the people of the united States of America declare ourselves free from the chains of an abusive government. Relying on the Creator’s protection, we pledge to stand by this Declaration of Independence with our lives, our fortunes and our honor.

See what I mean? The abuses meted out by an imperial government and endured by the American people have not ended. They have merely evolved.

Two hundred and forty-four years after a group of anti-government extremists declared their independence from tyranny, the American people have once again managed to work their way back under the tyrant’s thumb.

“We the people” are still being robbed blind by a government of thieves. We are still being taken advantage of by a government of scoundrels, idiots, and monsters. We are still being locked up by a government of greedy jailers. We are still being spied on by a government of Peeping Toms. We are still being ravaged by a government of ruffians, rapists, and killers.

We are still being forced to surrender our freedoms—and those of our children—to a government of extortionists, money launderers, and corporate pirates. And we are still being held at gunpoint by a government of soldiers: a standing army in the form of a militarized police.

The bipartisan coup that laid siege to our nation did not happen overnight. It snuck in under our radar, hiding behind the guise of national security, the war on drugs, the war on terror, the war on immigration, political correctness, hate crimes and a host of other official-sounding programs aimed at expanding the government’s power at the expense of individual freedoms.

As I make clear in my book Battlefield America: The War on the American People, the building blocks for the bleak future we’re just now getting a foretaste of—police shootings of unarmed citizens, profit-driven prisons, weapons of compliance, a wall-to-wall surveillance state, pre-crime programs, a suspect society, school-to-prison pipelines, militarized police, overcriminalization, SWAT team raids, endless wars, etc.—were put in place by government officials we trusted to look out for our best interests and by American citizens who failed to heed James Madison’s warning to “take alarm at the first experiment on our liberties.”

For too long now, we have suffered the injustices of a government that has no regard for our rights or our humanity.

We’ve suffered in silence for too long.

Frankly, what this country desperately needs is more anti-government extremists willing to take the government to task for its excesses, abuses and power grabs that fly in the face of every principle for which America’s founders risked their lives.

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banned bartering centralized banking system credit cult David Icke enslavement Headline News Humanity Intelwars money Money Creation pay it back power problems robbing us of real wealth ruling class stealing stop acquiescing Theft Trading Zionist International banking cartel

The Banking Cartel Cult’s MO: How They Rob Us Of Real Wealth

The international banking cartel has been robbing people blind since they began with the centralized banking system.  However, not many like to talk about just how they end up so wealthy and owning everything others have worked for.

David Icke mention this method of operation by “the cult” when he sat down with London Real’s Brian Rose. Icke has an uncanny way of laying out the way they are removing our wealth and property. Icke has been banned from YouTube for speaking up against the powers that shouldn’t be, so this video could be removed by the time you see this.

Basically, the bankers create money that doesn’t exist and loan it to people in exchange for collateral, or real wealth (such as a home, or land, or other physical assets.) If a person cannot repay the money that was created out of thin air, along with interest, the bankers will come in and take the collateral away, confiscating real wealth.

The cult does this by “creating a situation in which they can lend money that doesn’t exist to called ‘credit’ to the population and then charge interest on it, and taking as collateral that which does exist; land, resources, homes, businesses, and if the population doesn’t pay back the credit money that is a figment of the imagination, created out of nothing, basically, then the people issuing the credit, i.e., the banking system owned by the cult, gets your wealth that does exist,” say Icke.

This is an important piece of information to keep in mind.  If you owe money, and that loan is called up, and you cannot repay it, they will lay claim to the collateral that you’ve worked hard for.  All because you cannot come up with enough fake money to give to them. Like I’ve been saying, the system is rigged, and it’s not in our favor. This is the true nature of “the wealth gap” the mainstream media will refuse to talk about.

These same cult bankers are the ones, right now, trying to force the “Great Reset” on the world’s economy in a dominant takeover of literally everything on the planet. Again, this is important information to be aware of. We cannot beat this is we are not aware of what it is we are up against.

So what’s next for humanity? A “frenzy of repossessions,” says Icke. “As the cult, which owns the banking system, sucks up more wealth and resources of the world because of pandemic hoax that crashed the world economy, which the ones that control the banking system were behind.”

It All Comes Back To The Federal Reserve: The NWO Is Being Shoved Down Our Throats

Icke was wrong on a point, however. He proposes governments, not central banks, to be in charge of the money. That still leads to the same problems of eventual tyranny. When you give people power, history has shown that they are not benevolent with it. Centralized currency in the hands of another group is not solving the problem, it’s transferring it. If anyone is in charge of the financial supply, there will be tyranny and wealth distribution to those at the top claiming the right to create the money.

In fact, the government already has their version of wealth confiscation in the form of property taxes.  If you don’t pay it, they claim the right to steal your property from you. Again, transferring power is never the solution. Removing power will always be.

The solution is actually more simple: let people dictate which currency they use and remove that power from anyone, especially those who seek it. If people want to use gold, fine. Barter? Great. But transferring who can create the money is simply ludicrous, especially considering all governments are helping the “cult” usher in the New World Order. The truth is, no one owns anyone else and no one has the right to create money out of thin air, government or not. Transferring power is not the solution. Breaking free from these systems designed to enslave us, is the solution.

“The more choices you can make, the freer you are,” Icke says. “The solution is to stop acquiescing to authority,” Icke adds.

Reject the fear in exchange for knowledge.  These people at the top feed off of our fear and will never tell the truth.  They are determined to destroy humanity in their quest to own the world. We are the ones who have to stand up and stop this from happening. This is the reason I have suggested leaving the system.

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Banking Breaches dataprotection Intelwars keys pins Theft

Bank Card "Master Key" Stolen

South Africa’s Postbank experienced a catastrophic security failure. The bank’s master PIN key was stolen, forcing it to cancel and replace 12 million bank cards.

The breach resulted from the printing of the bank’s encrypted master key in plain, unencrypted digital language at the Postbank’s old data centre in the Pretoria city centre.

According to a number of internal Postbank reports, which the Sunday Times obtained, the master key was then stolen by employees.

One of the reports said that the cards would cost about R1bn to replace. The master key, a 36-digit code, allows anyone who has it to gain unfettered access to the bank’s systems, and allows them to read and rewrite account balances, and change information and data on any of the bank’s 12-million cards.

The bank lost $3.2 million in fraudulent transactions before the theft was discovered. Replacing all the cards will cost an estimated $58 million.

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abuses Americans are easily deceived control corporation election enslavement fall for it Government Headline News Intelwars killing law and order LIES Manipulation Martial Law militarized police Nazis police brutality Police State president Reichstag fire Theft tyranny

Engineering a Race War: Will This Be the American Police State’s Reichstag Fire?

This article was originally published by John W. Whitehead at The Rutherford Institute.

“Those who do not remember the past are condemned to repeat it.”— George Santayana

Watch and see: this debate over police brutality and accountability is about to get politicized into an election-year referendum on who should occupy the White House.

Don’t fall for it.

The Deep State, the powers-that-be, want us to turn this into a race war, but this is about so much more than systemic racism. This is the oldest con game in the books, the magician’s sleight of hand that keeps you focused on the shell game in front of you while your wallet is being picked clean by ruffians in your midst.

It’s the Reichstag Fire all over again.

It was February 1933, a month before national elections in Germany, and the Nazis weren’t expected to win. So they engineered a way to win: they began by infiltrating the police and granting police powers to their allies; then Hitler brought in stormtroopers to act as auxiliary police; by the time an arsonist (who claimed to be working for the Communists in the hopes of starting an armed revolt) set fire to the Reichstag, the German parliamentary building, the people were eager for a return to law and order.

That was all it took: Hitler used the attempted “coup” as an excuse to declare martial law and seize absolute power in Germany, establishing himself as a dictator with the support of the German people.

Fast forward to the present day, and what do we have? The nation in turmoil after months of pandemic fear-mongering and regional lockdowns, a national election looming, a president with falling poll numbers, and a police state that wants to stay in power at all costs.

Note the similarities?

It’s entirely possible that Americans have finally reached a tipping point over police brutality after decades of abuse. After all, until recently, the legislatures and the courts have marched in lockstep with the police state, repeatedly rebuffing efforts to hold police accountable for official misconduct.

Then again, it’s also equally possible that the architects of the police state have every intention of manipulating this outrage for their own purposes.

It works the same in every age.

As author Jim Keith explains, “Create violence through economic pressures, the media, mind control, agent provocateurs: thesis. Counter it with totalitarian measures, more mind control, police crackdowns, surveillance, drugging of the population: antithesis. What ensues is Orwell’s vision of 1984, a society of total control: synthesis.”

Here’s what is going to happen: the police state is going to stand down and allow these protests, riots, and looting to devolve into a situation where enough of the voting populace is so desperate for a return to law and order that they will gladly relinquish some of their freedoms to achieve it. And that’s how the police state will win, no matter which candidate gets elected to the White House.

You know who will lose? Every last one of us.

Listen, people should be outraged over what happened to George Floyd, but let’s get one thing straight: Floyd didn’t die merely because he was black and the cop who killed him is white. Floyd died because America is being overrun with warrior cops—vigilantes with a badge—who are part of a government-run standing army that is waging war on the American people in the so-called name of law and order.

Not all cops are warrior cops, trained to act as judge, jury, and executioner in their interactions with the populace. Unfortunately, the good cops—the ones who take seriously their oath of office to serve and protect their fellow citizens, uphold the Constitution, and maintain the peace—are increasingly being outnumbered by those who believe the lives—and rights—of police should be valued more than citizens.

These warrior cops may get paid by the citizenry, but they don’t work for us and they certainly aren’t operating within the limits of the U.S. Constitution.

This isn’t about racism in America.

This is about profit-driven militarism packaged in the guise of law and order, waged by greedy profiteers who have transformed the American homeland into a battlefield with militarized police, military weapons and tactics better suited to a war zone. This is systemic corruption predicated on the police state’s insatiable appetite for money, power, and control.

This is a military coup waiting to happen.

Why do we have more than a million cops on the taxpayer-funded payroll in this country whose jobs do not entail protecting our safety, maintaining the peace in our communities, and upholding our liberties?

I’ll tell you why.

These warrior cops—fitted out in the trappings of war, drilled in the deadly art of combat, and trained to look upon “every individual they interact with as an armed threat and every situation as a deadly force encounter in the making—are the police state’s standing army.

This is the new face of war, and America has become the new battlefield.

Militarized police officers, the end product of the government—federal, local, and state—and law enforcement agencies having merged, have become a “standing” or permanent army, composed of full-time professional soldiers who do not disband.

Yet these permanent armies are exactly what those who drafted the U.S. Constitution and Bill of Rights feared as tools used by despotic governments to wage war against its citizens.

American police forces were never supposed to be a branch of the military, nor were they meant to be private security forces for the reigning political faction. Instead, they were intended to be an aggregation of countless local police units, composed of citizens like you and me that exist for a sole purpose: to serve and protect the citizens of each and every American community.

As a result of the increasing militarization of the police in recent years, however, the police now not only look like the military—with their foreboding uniforms and phalanx of lethal weapons—but they function like them, as well.

Thus, no more do we have a civilian force of peace officers entrusted with serving and protecting the American people.  Instead, today’s militarized law enforcement officials have shifted their allegiance from the citizenry to the state, acting preemptively to ward off any possible challenges to the government’s power, unrestrained by the boundaries of the Fourth Amendment.

They don’t work for us. As retired Philadelphia Police Captain Ray Lewis warned, “Corporate America is using police forces as their mercenaries.”

We were sold a bill of goods.

For years now, we’ve been told that cops need military weapons to wage the government’s wars on drugs, crime, and terror. We’ve been told that cops need to be able to crash through doors, search vehicles, carry out roadside strip searches, shoot anyone they perceive to be a threat, and generally disregard the law whenever it suits them because they’re doing it to protect their fellow Americans from danger. We’ve been told that cops need extra legal protections because of the risks they take.

None of that is true.

In fact, a study by a political scientist at Princeton University concludes that militarizing police and SWAT teams “provide no detectable benefits in terms of officer safety or violent crime reduction.” According to researcher Jonathan Mummolo, if police in America are feeling less safe, it’s because the process of transforming them into extensions of the military makes them less safe, less popular, and less trust-worthy.

The study, the first systematic analysis on the use and consequences of militarized force, reveals that “police militarization neither reduces rates of violent crime nor changes the number of officers assaulted or killed.”

In other words, warrior cops aren’t making us or themselves any safer.

Militarized police armed with weapons of war who are allowed to operate above the law and break the laws with impunity are definitely not making America any safer or freer.

The problem, as one reporter rightly concluded, is “not that life has gotten that much more dangerous, it’s that authorities have chosen to respond to even innocent situations as if they were in a warzone.” Consequently, Americans are now eight times more likely to die in a police confrontation than they are to be killed by a terrorist.

Militarism within the nation’s police forces is proving to be deadlier than any pandemic.

This battlefield mindset has gone hand in hand with the rise of militarized SWAT (“special weapons and tactics”) teams.

Frequently justified as vital tools necessary to combat terrorism and deal with rare but extremely dangerous criminal situations, such as those involving hostages, SWAT teams have become intrinsic parts of local law enforcement operations, thanks in large part to substantial federal assistance and the Pentagon’s military surplus recycling program, which allows the transfer of military equipment, weapons and training to local police for free or at sharp discounts while increasing the profits of its corporate allies.

Where this becomes a problem of life and death for Americans is when these SWAT teams— outfitted, armed, and trained in military tactics—are assigned to carry out relatively routine police tasks, such as serving a search warrant. Nationwide, SWAT teams have been employed to address an astonishingly trivial array of criminal activity or mere community nuisances: angry dogs, domestic disputes, improper paperwork filed by an orchid farmer, and misdemeanor marijuana possession, to give a brief sampling.

Remember, SWAT teams originated as specialized units dedicated to defusing extremely sensitive, dangerous situations. They were never meant to be used for routine police work such as serving a warrant. Unfortunately, the mere presence of SWAT units has actually injected a level of danger and violence into police-citizen interactions that was not present as long as these interactions were handled by traditional civilian officers.

There are few communities without a SWAT team today, and there are more than 80,000 SWAT team raids per year.

Yet the tension inherent in most civilian-police encounter these days can’t be blamed exclusively on law enforcement’s growing reliance on SWAT teams and donated military equipment.

It goes far deeper, to a transformation in the way police view themselves and their line of duty.

Specifically, what we’re dealing with today is a skewed shoot-to-kill mindset in which police, trained to view themselves as warriors or soldiers in a war, whether against drugs, or terror, or crime, must “get” the bad guys—i.e., anyone who is a potential target—before the bad guys get them. The result is a spike in the number of incidents in which police shoot first, and ask questions later.

Making matters worse, when these officers, who have long since ceased to be peace officers, violate their oaths by bullying, beating, tasering, shooting and killing their employers—the taxpayers to whom they owe their allegiance—they are rarely given more than a slap on the hands before resuming their patrols.

This lawlessness on the part of law enforcement, an unmistakable characteristic of a police state, is made possible in large part by police unions which routinely oppose civilian review boards and resist the placement of names and badge numbers on officer uniforms; police agencies that abide by the Blue Code of Silence, the quiet understanding among police that they should not implicate their colleagues for their crimes and misconduct; prosecutors who treat police offenses with greater leniency than civilian offenses; courts that sanction police wrongdoing in the name of security; and legislatures that enhance the power, reach and arsenal of the police, and a citizenry that fails to hold its government accountable to the rule of law.

Indeed, not only are cops protected from most charges of wrongdoing—whether it’s shooting unarmed citizens (including children and old people), raping and abusing young women, falsifying police reports, trafficking drugs, or soliciting sex with minors—but even on the rare occasions when they are fired for misconduct, it’s only a matter of time before they get re-hired again.

Much of the “credit” for shielding these rogue cops goes to influential police unions and laws providing for qualified immunity, police contracts that “provide a shield of protection to officers accused of misdeeds and erect barriers to residents complaining of abuse,” state and federal laws that allow police to walk away without paying a dime for their wrongdoing, and rampant cronyism among government bureaucrats.

It’s happening all across the country.

This is how perverse justice in America has become.

Incredibly, while our own Bill of Rights are torn to shreds, leaving us with few protections against government abuses, a growing number of states are adopting Law Enforcement Officers’ Bill of Rights (LEOBoR), which provide cops accused of a crime with special due process rights and privileges not afforded to the average citizen.

This, right here, epitomizes everything that is wrong with America today.

Even when the system appears to work on the side of justice, it’s the American taxpayer who ends up paying the price.

Literally.

Because police officers are more likely to be struck by lightning than be held financially accountable for their actions. As Human Rights Watch explains, taxpayers actually pay three times for officers who repeatedly commit abuses: “once to cover their salaries while they commit abuses; next to pay settlements or civil jury awards against officers; and a third time through payments into police ‘defense’ funds provided by the cities.”

Deep-seated corruption of this kind doesn’t just go away because politicians and corporations suddenly become conscience-stricken in the face of mass protests and start making promises they don’t intend to keep.

As I explain in my book Battlefield America: The War on the American People, we need civic engagement and citizen activism, especially at the local level. However, if it ends at the ballot box without achieving any real reform that holds government officials at all levels accountable to playing by the rules of the Constitution, then shame on us.

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Engineering a Race War: Will This Be the American Police State’s Reichstag Fire?

This article was originally published by John W. Whitehead at The Rutherford Institute.

“Those who do not remember the past are condemned to repeat it.”— George Santayana

Watch and see: this debate over police brutality and accountability is about to get politicized into an election-year referendum on who should occupy the White House.

Don’t fall for it.

The Deep State, the powers-that-be, want us to turn this into a race war, but this is about so much more than systemic racism. This is the oldest con game in the books, the magician’s sleight of hand that keeps you focused on the shell game in front of you while your wallet is being picked clean by ruffians in your midst.

It’s the Reichstag Fire all over again.

It was February 1933, a month before national elections in Germany, and the Nazis weren’t expected to win. So they engineered a way to win: they began by infiltrating the police and granting police powers to their allies; then Hitler brought in stormtroopers to act as auxiliary police; by the time an arsonist (who claimed to be working for the Communists in the hopes of starting an armed revolt) set fire to the Reichstag, the German parliamentary building, the people were eager for a return to law and order.

That was all it took: Hitler used the attempted “coup” as an excuse to declare martial law and seize absolute power in Germany, establishing himself as a dictator with the support of the German people.

Fast forward to the present day, and what do we have? The nation in turmoil after months of pandemic fear-mongering and regional lockdowns, a national election looming, a president with falling poll numbers, and a police state that wants to stay in power at all costs.

Note the similarities?

It’s entirely possible that Americans have finally reached a tipping point over police brutality after decades of abuse. After all, until recently, the legislatures and the courts have marched in lockstep with the police state, repeatedly rebuffing efforts to hold police accountable for official misconduct.

Then again, it’s also equally possible that the architects of the police state have every intention of manipulating this outrage for their own purposes.

It works the same in every age.

As author Jim Keith explains, “Create violence through economic pressures, the media, mind control, agent provocateurs: thesis. Counter it with totalitarian measures, more mind control, police crackdowns, surveillance, drugging of the population: antithesis. What ensues is Orwell’s vision of 1984, a society of total control: synthesis.”

Here’s what is going to happen: the police state is going to stand down and allow these protests, riots, and looting to devolve into a situation where enough of the voting populace is so desperate for a return to law and order that they will gladly relinquish some of their freedoms to achieve it. And that’s how the police state will win, no matter which candidate gets elected to the White House.

You know who will lose? Every last one of us.

Listen, people should be outraged over what happened to George Floyd, but let’s get one thing straight: Floyd didn’t die merely because he was black and the cop who killed him is white. Floyd died because America is being overrun with warrior cops—vigilantes with a badge—who are part of a government-run standing army that is waging war on the American people in the so-called name of law and order.

Not all cops are warrior cops, trained to act as judge, jury, and executioner in their interactions with the populace. Unfortunately, the good cops—the ones who take seriously their oath of office to serve and protect their fellow citizens, uphold the Constitution, and maintain the peace—are increasingly being outnumbered by those who believe the lives—and rights—of police should be valued more than citizens.

These warrior cops may get paid by the citizenry, but they don’t work for us and they certainly aren’t operating within the limits of the U.S. Constitution.

This isn’t about racism in America.

This is about profit-driven militarism packaged in the guise of law and order, waged by greedy profiteers who have transformed the American homeland into a battlefield with militarized police, military weapons and tactics better suited to a war zone. This is systemic corruption predicated on the police state’s insatiable appetite for money, power, and control.

This is a military coup waiting to happen.

Why do we have more than a million cops on the taxpayer-funded payroll in this country whose jobs do not entail protecting our safety, maintaining the peace in our communities, and upholding our liberties?

I’ll tell you why.

These warrior cops—fitted out in the trappings of war, drilled in the deadly art of combat, and trained to look upon “every individual they interact with as an armed threat and every situation as a deadly force encounter in the making—are the police state’s standing army.

This is the new face of war, and America has become the new battlefield.

Militarized police officers, the end product of the government—federal, local, and state—and law enforcement agencies having merged, have become a “standing” or permanent army, composed of full-time professional soldiers who do not disband.

Yet these permanent armies are exactly what those who drafted the U.S. Constitution and Bill of Rights feared as tools used by despotic governments to wage war against its citizens.

American police forces were never supposed to be a branch of the military, nor were they meant to be private security forces for the reigning political faction. Instead, they were intended to be an aggregation of countless local police units, composed of citizens like you and me that exist for a sole purpose: to serve and protect the citizens of each and every American community.

As a result of the increasing militarization of the police in recent years, however, the police now not only look like the military—with their foreboding uniforms and phalanx of lethal weapons—but they function like them, as well.

Thus, no more do we have a civilian force of peace officers entrusted with serving and protecting the American people.  Instead, today’s militarized law enforcement officials have shifted their allegiance from the citizenry to the state, acting preemptively to ward off any possible challenges to the government’s power, unrestrained by the boundaries of the Fourth Amendment.

They don’t work for us. As retired Philadelphia Police Captain Ray Lewis warned, “Corporate America is using police forces as their mercenaries.”

We were sold a bill of goods.

For years now, we’ve been told that cops need military weapons to wage the government’s wars on drugs, crime, and terror. We’ve been told that cops need to be able to crash through doors, search vehicles, carry out roadside strip searches, shoot anyone they perceive to be a threat, and generally disregard the law whenever it suits them because they’re doing it to protect their fellow Americans from danger. We’ve been told that cops need extra legal protections because of the risks they take.

None of that is true.

In fact, a study by a political scientist at Princeton University concludes that militarizing police and SWAT teams “provide no detectable benefits in terms of officer safety or violent crime reduction.” According to researcher Jonathan Mummolo, if police in America are feeling less safe, it’s because the process of transforming them into extensions of the military makes them less safe, less popular, and less trust-worthy.

The study, the first systematic analysis on the use and consequences of militarized force, reveals that “police militarization neither reduces rates of violent crime nor changes the number of officers assaulted or killed.”

In other words, warrior cops aren’t making us or themselves any safer.

Militarized police armed with weapons of war who are allowed to operate above the law and break the laws with impunity are definitely not making America any safer or freer.

The problem, as one reporter rightly concluded, is “not that life has gotten that much more dangerous, it’s that authorities have chosen to respond to even innocent situations as if they were in a warzone.” Consequently, Americans are now eight times more likely to die in a police confrontation than they are to be killed by a terrorist.

Militarism within the nation’s police forces is proving to be deadlier than any pandemic.

This battlefield mindset has gone hand in hand with the rise of militarized SWAT (“special weapons and tactics”) teams.

Frequently justified as vital tools necessary to combat terrorism and deal with rare but extremely dangerous criminal situations, such as those involving hostages, SWAT teams have become intrinsic parts of local law enforcement operations, thanks in large part to substantial federal assistance and the Pentagon’s military surplus recycling program, which allows the transfer of military equipment, weapons and training to local police for free or at sharp discounts while increasing the profits of its corporate allies.

Where this becomes a problem of life and death for Americans is when these SWAT teams— outfitted, armed, and trained in military tactics—are assigned to carry out relatively routine police tasks, such as serving a search warrant. Nationwide, SWAT teams have been employed to address an astonishingly trivial array of criminal activity or mere community nuisances: angry dogs, domestic disputes, improper paperwork filed by an orchid farmer, and misdemeanor marijuana possession, to give a brief sampling.

Remember, SWAT teams originated as specialized units dedicated to defusing extremely sensitive, dangerous situations. They were never meant to be used for routine police work such as serving a warrant. Unfortunately, the mere presence of SWAT units has actually injected a level of danger and violence into police-citizen interactions that was not present as long as these interactions were handled by traditional civilian officers.

There are few communities without a SWAT team today, and there are more than 80,000 SWAT team raids per year.

Yet the tension inherent in most civilian-police encounter these days can’t be blamed exclusively on law enforcement’s growing reliance on SWAT teams and donated military equipment.

It goes far deeper, to a transformation in the way police view themselves and their line of duty.

Specifically, what we’re dealing with today is a skewed shoot-to-kill mindset in which police, trained to view themselves as warriors or soldiers in a war, whether against drugs, or terror, or crime, must “get” the bad guys—i.e., anyone who is a potential target—before the bad guys get them. The result is a spike in the number of incidents in which police shoot first, and ask questions later.

Making matters worse, when these officers, who have long since ceased to be peace officers, violate their oaths by bullying, beating, tasering, shooting and killing their employers—the taxpayers to whom they owe their allegiance—they are rarely given more than a slap on the hands before resuming their patrols.

This lawlessness on the part of law enforcement, an unmistakable characteristic of a police state, is made possible in large part by police unions which routinely oppose civilian review boards and resist the placement of names and badge numbers on officer uniforms; police agencies that abide by the Blue Code of Silence, the quiet understanding among police that they should not implicate their colleagues for their crimes and misconduct; prosecutors who treat police offenses with greater leniency than civilian offenses; courts that sanction police wrongdoing in the name of security; and legislatures that enhance the power, reach and arsenal of the police, and a citizenry that fails to hold its government accountable to the rule of law.

Indeed, not only are cops protected from most charges of wrongdoing—whether it’s shooting unarmed citizens (including children and old people), raping and abusing young women, falsifying police reports, trafficking drugs, or soliciting sex with minors—but even on the rare occasions when they are fired for misconduct, it’s only a matter of time before they get re-hired again.

Much of the “credit” for shielding these rogue cops goes to influential police unions and laws providing for qualified immunity, police contracts that “provide a shield of protection to officers accused of misdeeds and erect barriers to residents complaining of abuse,” state and federal laws that allow police to walk away without paying a dime for their wrongdoing, and rampant cronyism among government bureaucrats.

It’s happening all across the country.

This is how perverse justice in America has become.

Incredibly, while our own Bill of Rights are torn to shreds, leaving us with few protections against government abuses, a growing number of states are adopting Law Enforcement Officers’ Bill of Rights (LEOBoR), which provide cops accused of a crime with special due process rights and privileges not afforded to the average citizen.

This, right here, epitomizes everything that is wrong with America today.

Even when the system appears to work on the side of justice, it’s the American taxpayer who ends up paying the price.

Literally.

Because police officers are more likely to be struck by lightning than be held financially accountable for their actions. As Human Rights Watch explains, taxpayers actually pay three times for officers who repeatedly commit abuses: “once to cover their salaries while they commit abuses; next to pay settlements or civil jury awards against officers; and a third time through payments into police ‘defense’ funds provided by the cities.”

Deep-seated corruption of this kind doesn’t just go away because politicians and corporations suddenly become conscience-stricken in the face of mass protests and start making promises they don’t intend to keep.

As I explain in my book Battlefield America: The War on the American People, we need civic engagement and citizen activism, especially at the local level. However, if it ends at the ballot box without achieving any real reform that holds government officials at all levels accountable to playing by the rules of the Constitution, then shame on us.

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Robert Kiyosaki: What The Elites Don’t Want You To Know

Robert Kiyosaki, the author of Rich Dad, Poor dad says there’s something the elitists don’t want you to know.  There’s a simple way to take back your power, and it involves removing yourself from any centralized banking system.

These centralized systems were all set up for the elite by the elite, and they don’t want you to know you can remove yourself from the system, or the Matrix, so to speak. All you have to do is invest and spend outside of their system.  Decentralized systems are already in place, and the key to breaking free involves understanding that the central banks were not set up to help you.

The Federal Reserve, the United States central bank, has “printed” [created out of thin air] more than $2 trillion since the global economic crisis began, and when the Fed prints money it makes the price of assets like gold, silver, and Bitcoin go up. As Robert Kiyosaki says, central banks are run by the “controlling elite.” These elites do not like gold or because central banks cannot print gold. Equally, central banks do not like Bitcoin and the blockchain because what Robert calls people’s money, does not need central banks either.

Today, billions of people are trapped in a central banking system owned by the mega-rich and are losing big time because they are saving money. Kiyosaki says he knew the “leaders” of the world were screwed up, but even he didn’t think they were as diabolical as they have revealed themselves to be. “People are missing out on one of the biggest, catastrophic cash heists, of the whole world,” says Kiyosaki. “Our governments have really screwed up,” he adds. So it’s time to leave the system or be dragged into slavery by staying in it.  After all, they shut down the world to cover up something “very very big.”

Lynette Zang: The Plandemic is a Cover For The “Global Financial Reset”

Kiyosaki says to get crytpo. The reason he likes it is because it’s outside the system.  The elitists and politicians cannot control Bitcoin, and they are terrified of people realizing this. This is panicking  all of the control systems of the globe (the governments.) They do not want you to figure this out. This was put in a fine way by a man named Jake Ducey, who understands, like Kiyosaki, that we are embedded in this Matrix of mind control.  But we can remove ourselves, and it’s remarkably easy.

But first, it’s important for you to understand why they need you to think you can’t be free of the rigged system. Once you figure it out, you’ll break out immediately, and it renders them useless. As Duecy says, “what good is a lifetime politician, that’s been a politician for 40 years, that’s made all this money off of taxpayer money (theft) and insider investing…what good are they if we realize we can create a better world without them? It renders them useless. Now, what good are the people that are behind the scenes, pulling the strings on those types of puppets, and we don’t even know who they are, ad they hide in the shadows, what good are they? NONE! And that’s why there’s a vested interest in censorship and control of any information that uplifts and changes the thought patterns of too many people.”

In short, to break free from the system means to stop using their money and paying them (taxes) to keep you enslaved.  Instead, use alternative currencies that cannot be manipulated, and realize that you don’t need a master or a ruler ordering you around because, without them, we can still work together and create a future worth living.

This is all part of the Great Awakening, says Ducey.  You can remain enslaved to the system, or you can wake up, let go of it, and start really living now. I think it’s happening anyway, so you might as well make the decision live freely anyway.  The longer you hold out and insist you need a master dictating your life, the harder this transition to a better way of life will be for you.

Good ideas don’t require force.

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HOSED DOWN: America’s Back – I DON’T BUY IT!

This article was contributed by Tom Beck of Portfolio Wealth Global. 

Fiat currencies are a STRANGE INVENTION. Sometimes, they fail miserably. At other times, they fail slowly, but NEVER have they been able to STAY ALIVE for long. Even the British Pound, the oldest fiat currency of them all, doesn’t have MUCH GOING FOR IT.

Fiat currencies are INHERENTLY diminishing in value since the money supply will ALWAYS INCREASE. The world is getting richer, so even if we were under a gold standard, the currency supply would enlarge constantly.

The BIG DIFFERENCE would be that it would have grown in accordance with debt and productivity levels. Politicians couldn’t JUST CREATE new units on a whim, nor could central bankers LEND currency to the entire RUSSELL 2000 index.

Simply put, when a central bank creates MORE CURRENCY than is needed for an economy, which it ERRONEOUSLY DOES, the excess currency floats to the rich and to assets, which inflate in price.

It’s easy to DETECT this flow of currency and it is what fuels our public debt.

Courtesy: Incrementum AG

The public learns TO DEPEND on this ballooning deficit (as shown above), instead of on itself for solutions. They don’t develop skills, but they develop dependence, which is just what politicians want – TRAPPED VOTERS.

Finally, what happens is that there’s STRESS between those who can’t figure out how the game of life works and those who have got the knowledge and the strategies.

Debt is a disaster, and if you think that just because there’s LOW INFLATION that debt doesn’t come with a price tag, YOU’RE WRONG.

Debt allows bad actors to get rich at your expense. It allows deep state to operate and PERPETUATES POVERTY.

Courtesy: Incrementum AG

This is the reason that in EVERY COUNTRY, the best option is to STORE WEALTH in gold, as you can see above!

I believe in American enterprise and I believe in this country and its people, but I’m NOT NAÏVE. Most have LITTLE TO NO financial education and can’t understand basic economic terms.

I don’t see this changing anytime soon and though it saddens me, I know the part I have to play in this and that is to publish this letter and inspire anyone that listens that the door to wealth is open, but it’s NOT EASY.

Through this platform, my objective is to allow everyone to COME INTO the world of finance.

Think about the fact that if every American adult would go out and buy 6 ounces of silver (worth around $100 today), more than one billion ounces of silver would be needed. This would bring forth the national debt debate TO THE FRONT AND CENTER and would FORCE AUTHORITIES to figure out new ways to conduct themselves.

Wealth creates destinies, not handouts.

Courtesy: Incrementum AG

It is DEEPLY DISTURBING that they don’t show this chart in schools and mainstream media outlets. EVERYONE should know that they’re saving wealth in a ticking TIME BOMB unless they own precious metals.

America’s future will be great, but the problem is that it’s not inclusive; the GDP grows, but so do the polarities between classes. The rich are FINDING OUT that unless they learn profitable ways TO ELEVATE others out of poverty, by inspiring them to get trained in new skills, and unless the government LEAVES STUDENT TUITION alone so that its price can fall by 90% and be realistic, the income gap will continue to WIDEN and they’ll be scrutinized much more and won’t be cherished for creating jobs, but vilified for exploiting workers.

America’s back, but its problems remain BLATANTLY VISIBLE.

Don’t be fooled.

EXCLUSIVE REPORTS, Featured In This Article and in Others, Which Are Considered ESSENTIAL READING:
1. Gold Investing – DOWNLOAD HERE!
2. Trump’s War with Mainstream Media – DOWNLOAD HERE!
3. Covid-19 Round2 Sell-Off Playbook – DOWNLOAD HERE!
4. Why The Dollar Is Dead – DOWNLOAD HERE!
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Here Is The Stunning Chart That Blows Up All Of Modern Central Banking

This article was originally published by Tyler Durden at ZeroHedge. 

Several years ago, when conventional wisdom dictated that to push inflation higher and jumpstart lethargic economies, central banks have to push rates so low as to make saving punitive and force consumers to go out and spend their hard-earned savings, several central banks including the ECB, SNB and BOJ crossed into the monetary twilight zone by lowering overnight rates negative.

Then, year after year, we would hear from the likes of Kuroda and Draghi how the BOJ and ECB will continue and even extend their insane monetary policy, which now includes the purchase of 80% of all Japanese ETFs…

… until the central banks hit their inflation targets of 2%.

And yet, year after year, the BOJ would not only not hit its inflation target but appeared to drift ever lower, as did the ECB, SNB, and any other bank that had gone NIRP, confounding all economists and central bankers: why has this happened if rates were negative? Why were consumers not taking their money out of the bank and spending it, pushing inflation higher?

Nobody had an answer, until in late 2015, we offered a glimpse into what was structurally flawed with this “model”: using a report by Bank of America, we showed that not only had household savings rates not declined in countries with negative rates, they had in fact risen. There was a simple reason for this, as the BIS had highlighted: ultra-low rates may perversely be driving a greater propensity for consumers to save as retirement income becomes more uncertain.

What logically followed from this is that inflation would also track rates lower, resulting in a crushing blow to economic orthodoxy where the only weapon central banks had left to spark an economic – read inflationary – recovery was to ease monetary conditions even more in hopes that eventually they would drop low enough to spark the long-awaited recovery.

It never happened, even though amusingly it was all the way back in 2015 that we predicted – correctly in retrospect – just what the monetary endgame is:

Fear not: when even “moar” QE and NIRP do not work, and the economists of the ECB admit the “monetary twilight zone” was a disaster, there is one last “tool” they can and will use – helicoptersBecause when it comes to printing money, whether in digital reserve format, or physical paper format, there is literally no limit how much can and will be created to achieve what is the endgame of the current monetary dead end: the total destruction of fiat as a store of wealth in order to preserve the global equity tranche while wiping away a few hundred trillion in debt.

Thanks to COVID-19, we have now moved beyond merely the “twilight” and are now in the “helicopter” zone.

But what about the relationship between rates and savings, and by extension inflation? After all, that is the topic of this post. Well, we can now confirm that our intuition from 2015 that negative rates are not only not inflationary but outright deflationary, and encourage consumers to save even more, was correct all along.

Below we post a chart from the latest Research Investment Committee report by BofA titled “Stagnation, stagflation or elevation”, which with just one image blows up everything that is flawed with monetary policy. It shows that while lower rates indeed stimulate spending and lead to lower savings, this effect peaks at around 4% and then goes negative. In fact, the lower yields – and rates – drop below 4% – not to mention to 0% or below – the lower the propensity to spend and the higher the savings rate!

There is another reason why this chart of such epic importance: it confirms what so many have known but were afraid to voice as it ran against decades of flawed economic theory: it demonstrates without a shadow of a doubt, that hyper-easy monetary policy is not inflationary but is deflationary. Which is catastrophic for central banks, who publicly state that the only reason they are pursuing ultra-easy monetary policy which includes QE and negative rates, is not to goose the market higher (even though by now we all know that’s the real reason) but to stimulate inflation.

This is how Bank of America summarizes this stunning observation:

As low growth & inflation make low-risk-asset income scarce (e.g. from government bonds), households are forced to reduce consumption and increase savings in order to meet retirement goals.

Forced saving further depresses demand in a vicious cycle.

This means that the lower (and more negative) central banks push rates, the lower (not higher) the spending, the higher (not lower) the savings rate, the lower the inflation, the higher the disinflation (or outright deflation), which in turn forces central banks to cut rates even more, to add QE, yield curve control, buy junk bonds, buy ETFs, or pursue any of a host of other monetary policies that are even more devastating to consumer psychology, forcing even more savingsresulting in even more disinflation, causing even more intervention by central banks in what is, without doubt, the most diabolical feedback loop of modern monetary policy and economics.

Said otherwise, monetary easing is deflationary. Let that sink in.

In effect, what the chart above shows, is that once trapped by NIRPthere is no way out, and the more central banks pursue inflation to offset deflation via monetary policy, the more pronounced the deflationary outcome resulting in even more central bank deflationary “stimulus”!

Meanwhile, as central banks spark even more deflation with their policies, the one place where all those trillions in liquidity they conjure out of thin air ends up in, is what was once known as the “market” and is now, in the words of BofA the “fake market” or as DB calls it “administered markets“, leading to ever-higher fake asset prices, and ever greater wealth and income inequality, which ultimately tears the fabric of society itself.

In fact, just look at what’s happening to America right now: rioting, looting, pillaging, Americans fighting other Americans and while the media is spinning self-serving narratives that frame the bad guy as Trump, or China, or Russia, or this political party, or that, or some social movement, the truth is that the culprit behind the upcoming collapse of the US is just one, the same one that Thomas Jefferson warned the brand new nation about more than two centuries ago:

I believe that banking institutions are more dangerous to our liberties than standing armies. The issuing power of currency shall be taken from the banks and restored to the people, to whom it properly belongs.

If the American people ever allow private banks to control the issue of their currency, first by inflation, then by deflation, the banks and corporations that will grow up around them will deprive the people of all property until their children wake up homeless on the continent their Fathers conquered.”

And sure enough, looking at what’s happening in any major city today, we see a lot of homeless and desperate people. And as a further reminder, the Fed – as the Bank of England was so kind to remind us – was and remains a private institution, no matter its claims otherwise.

Source: Bank of England

Now if only someone could explain to all those millions of angry Americans that the source of virtually all of society’s ills is to be found in the building below (which just happens to house an unknown amount of freshly printed dollar bills), it would be a much-needed start to the reset the US so desperately needs to avoid complete destruction.

 

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The Fed Is Now The Proud Owner Of Bankrupt Hertz Bonds

This article was originally published by Tyler Durden at Zerohedge.

On March 23 – the day the S&P dropped to its cycle low of 2,237 –  the Fed stunned capital markets when it announced it would purchase investment-grade corporate bonds, traversing a Rubicon into a secondary market intervention that not even  Ben Bernanke had dared to cross. A few weeks later, on April 9, the Fed doubled down by announcing it would purchase not only junk bonds from “fallen angel” issuers (an announcement which came just days after a quarter in which a record $150BN in investment-grade bonds were downgraded to junk, starting the long-awaited tsunami of “fallen angels”), but would also buy junk bond ETFs such as HYG and JNK.

This is what the Fed’s Secondary Market Corporate Credit Facilities term sheet said on this topic:

The Facility also may purchase U.S.-listed ETFs whose investment objective is to provide broad exposure to the market for U.S. corporate bonds. The preponderance of ETF holdings will be of ETFs whose primary investment objective is exposure to U.S. investment-grade corporate bonds, and the remainder will be in ETFs whose primary investment objective is exposure to U.S. high-yield corporate bonds

Naturally, the news cheered beaten-down markets and was enough to send junk bond ETFs such as JNK and HYG soaring.

One month later, following a surge in inquiry including from the bond king Jeff Gundlach as to when the Fed would actually start buying corporate bond ETFs, the Fed realized it would not be able to jawbone markets anymore and would have to put its money where its term sheet was, and on May 11 the NY Fed said it would “begin purchases of exchange-traded funds (ETFs) on May 12.”

And while the central bank said the focus of its ETF purchases would be on IG-focused ETFs, the New York Fed also disclosed it would start buying junk bonds ETFs as well:

As specified in the term sheet, the SMCCF may purchase U.S.-listed ETFs whose investment objective is to provide broad exposure to the market for U.S. corporate bonds. The preponderance of ETF holdings will be of ETFs whose primary investment objective is exposure to U.S. investment-grade corporate bonds, and the remainder will be in ETFs whose primary investment objective is exposure to U.S. high-yield corporate bonds.

Then, last Thursday, we reported that as part of the Fed’s record balance sheet, which for the first time ever surpassed $7 trillion, the Fed disclosed that it also held $1.8 billion under Corporate Credit Facility holdings, the line item that includes purchases of both investment grade (LQD) and junk bonds ETFs (HYG, JNK, etc).

This came two days after Powell defended the Fed’s program to buy junk bonds during his testimony before the Senate Banking Committee, which asked how purchases of junk bonds is “helping folks on Main Street.” Powell flagged that the Fed allowed for buying bonds from so-called “fallen angels” to ensure there is “no cliff” between the two lending markets (even though as we pointed out previously, a clear cliff has formed), saying “we don’t want to have a cliff there to where investment grade markets are working well, but the leveraged markets are not, non-investment grade markets are not.”

He then added that “we made a very limited, narrow set of actions to support market function in these markets, including buying ETFs, and that’s had an effect to improve market function there.”

Powell concluded by saying “we’re not buying junk bonds generally across the board at all,” which of course is correct: he is merely buying ETFs that have junk bond constituents.

And this is where the Fed’s first major test of directly manipulating and intervening in market functioning is about to take place.

While the Fed’s H.4.1 statement does not breakdown how much of the $1.8 billion in ETF holdings is allocated to investment grade and how much is junk, it is safe to say that at least $1 dollar of that amount has been allocated to purchases of Junk ETFs.

That will be a problem for Powell, because a quick scan of the holdings of both HYG and JNK reveals that these junk bonds ETFs own, among the hundreds of other securities, several bonds from the just defaulted rental giant, Hertz.

Here are HYG’s holdings of HTZ bonds: they amount to just over $50MM in face value across 4 bonds (out of a total of $23.3BN in holdings across just over 1,000 bonds).

And here is JNK: just under $$30MM in notional across 3 CUSIPs out of a total of $11.55BN in total assets in the ETF.

And yes, for those asking, both ETFs hold that infamous Hertz bond that was issued last November and that will default before paying a single coupon.

To be sure, we can only extrapolate but it is safe to say that the Fed’s holdings of both these ETFs are modest for the time being, and we assume that the bulk of ETF purchases have targeted the investment grade, LQD ETF; still the fact is that as of this moment, the Fed is a holder, via BlackRock and via HYG and JNK, of bonds which are in default, and which make the Fed a part of the Hertz post-petition equity once it emerges from bankruptcy!

This means that unless the Fed somehow manages to divest of Hertz bonds that comprise its HYG and JNK holdings, the US central bank is as of this moment a stakeholder in the Hertz bankruptcy process, and assuming there is no liquidation, will end up owning a pro-rata stake of the post-petition equity once the company emerges from bankruptcy in the not too distant future.

What happens then nobody knows: will the Fed take a vocal position in the company’s future? Can the Fed even own equities via a debt-to-equity swap? What happens when hundreds of other junk bonds default and the Fed ends up owning billions in post-petition equity pro forma for equitization?

We don’t know; we doubt anyone on Wall Street or in Congress knows. And we are certain that the Fed itself doesn’t know because, in its scramble to stabilize the bond market, it forgot that once companies file for bankruptcy (certainly there is no discussion in the Fed’s term sheets of what happens once its corporate bond holdings default) the Fed will – sooner or later – end up being an equity holder.

As a reminder, the ECB was faced with a similar scandal in Dec 2017 when it ended up holding bonds of insolvent Steinhoff, but back then Mario Draghi quickly liquidated the bonds and the market pretended nothing ever happened. The problem for Powell is that one look at the HYG and JNK holdings reveal dozens if not hundreds of companies which will file for bankruptcy within months if not weeks, suggesting the Hertz debacle is just the start of a bankruptcy flood in which the Fed will emerge as a key actor in bankruptcy court and Powell will have to explain away why it is now an equity stakeholder of bankrupt companies.

We eagerly look forward to Powell answering all these questions, hopefully as soon as this Friday when the Fed chair holds yet another video conference.

 

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The Worst Is Yet to Come: Contact Tracing, Immunity Cards and Mass Testing

This article was originally published by  John W. Whitehead at The Rutherford Institute.

The things we were worried would happen are happening.”—Angus Johnston, professor at the City University of New York

No one is safe.

No one is immune.

No one gets spared the anguish, fear, and heartache of living under the shadow of an authoritarian police state.

That’s the message being broadcast 24/7 with every new piece of government propaganda, every new law that criminalizes otherwise lawful activity, every new policeman on the beat, every new surveillance camera casting a watchful eye, every sensationalist news story that titillates and distracts, every new prison or detention center built to house troublemakers and other undesirables, every new court ruling that gives government agents a green light to strip and steal and rape and ravage the citizenry, every school that opts to indoctrinate rather than educate, and every new justification for why Americans should comply with the government’s attempts to trample the Constitution underfoot.

Yes, COVID-19 has taken a significant toll on the nation emotionally, physically, and economically, but there are still greater dangers on the horizon.

As long as “we the people” continue to allow the government to trample our rights in the so-called name of national security, things will get worse, not better.

It’s already worse.

Now there’s talk of mass testing for COVID-19 antibodies, screening checkpoints, contact tracing, immunity passports to allow those who have recovered from the virus to move around more freely and snitch tip lines for reporting “rule breakers” to the authorities.

If you can’t read the writing on the wall, you need to pay better attention.

These may seem like small, necessary steps in the war against the COVID-19 virus, but they’re only necessary to the police state in its efforts to further undermine the Constitution, extend its control over the populace, and feed its insatiable appetite for ever-greater powers.

Nothing is ever as simple as the government claims it is.

Whatever dangerous practices you allow the government to carry out now—whether it’s in the name of national security or protecting America’s borders or making America healthy again—rest assured, these same practices can and will be used against you when the government decides to set its sights on you.

The war on drugs turned out to be a war on the American people, waged with SWAT teams and militarized police.

The war on terror turned out to be a war on the American people, waged with warrantless surveillance and indefinite detention.

The war on immigration turned out to be a war on the American people, waged with roving government agents demanding “papers, please.”

This war on COVID-19 will be yet another war on the American people, waged with all of the surveillance weaponry at the government’s disposal: thermal imaging cameras, drones, contact tracing, biometric databases, etc.

So you see, when you talk about empowering government agents to screen the populace in order to control and prevent the spread of this virus, what you’re really talking about is creating a society in which ID cards, roundups, checkpoints, and detention centers become routine weapons used by the government to control and suppress the populace, no matter the threat.

This is also how you pave the way for a national identification system of epic proportions.

Imagine it: a national classification system that not only categorizes you according to your health status but also allows the government to sort you in a hundred other ways: by gender, orientation, wealth, medical condition, religious beliefs, political viewpoint, legal status, etc.

Are you starting to get the bigger picture yet?

This is just another wolf in sheep’s clothing, a “show me your papers” scheme disguised as a means of fighting a virus.

Don’t fall for it.

The ramifications of such a “show me your papers” society in which government officials are empowered to stop individuals, demand they identify themselves, and subject them to patdowns, warrantless screenings, searches, and interrogations are beyond chilling.

By allowing government agents to establish a litmus test for individuals to be able to exit a state of lockdown and engage in commerce, movement and any other right that corresponds to life in a supposedly free society, it lays the groundwork for a society in which you are required to identify yourself at any time to any government worker who demands it for any reason.

Such tactics quickly lead one down a slippery slope that ends with government agents empowered to force anyone and everyone to prove they are in compliance with every statute and regulation on the books.

It used to be that unless police had a reasonable suspicion that a person was guilty of wrongdoing, they had no legal authority to stop the person and require identification. In other words, “we the people” had the right to come and go as we please without the fear of being questioned by police or forced to identify ourselves.

Unfortunately, in this age of COVID-19, the unrestricted right to move about freely is being pitted against the government’s power to lock down communities at a moment’s notice. And in this tug-of-war between individual freedoms and government power, “we the people” have been on the losing end of the deal.

Curiously enough, these COVID-19 restrictions dovetail conveniently with a national timeline for states to comply with the Real ID Act, which imposes federal standards on identity documents such as state drivers’ licenses, a prelude to this national identification system.

Talk about a perfect storm for bringing about a national ID card, the ultimate human tracking device.

Granted, in the absence of a national ID card, which would make the police state’s task of monitoring, tracking and singling out individual suspects far simpler, “we the people” are already tracked in a myriad of ways: through our state driver’s licenses, Social Security numbers, bank accounts, purchases, and electronic transactions; by way of our correspondence and communication devices—email, phone calls, and mobile phones; through chips implanted in our vehicles, identification documents, even our clothing.

Add to this the fact that businesses, schools, and other facilities are relying more and more on fingerprints and facial recognition to identify us. All the while, data companies such as Acxiom are capturing vast caches of personal information to help airports, retailers, police, and other government authorities instantly determine whether someone is the person he or she claims to be.

This informational glut—used to great advantage by both the government and corporate sectors—has converged into a mandate for “an internal passport,” a.k.a., a national ID card that would store information as basic as a person’s name, birth date, and place of birth, as well as private information, including a Social Security number, fingerprint, retinal scan, and personal, criminal and financial records.

A federalized, computerized, cross-referenced, databased system of identification policed by government agents would be the final nail in the coffin for privacy (not to mention a logistical security nightmare that would leave Americans even more vulnerable to every hacker in the cybersphere).

Americans have always resisted adopting a national ID card for good reason: it gives the government and its agents the ultimate power to target, track and terrorize the populace according to the government’s own nefarious purposes.

National ID card systems have been used before, by other oppressive governments, in the name of national security, invariably with horrifying results.

For instance, in Germany, the Nazis required all Jews to carry special stamped ID cards for travel within the country. A prelude to the yellow Star of David badges, these stamped cards were instrumental in identifying Jews for deportation to death camps in Poland.

Author Raul Hilberg summarizes the impact that such a system had on the Jews:

The whole identification system, with its personal documents, specially assigned names, and conspicuous tagging in public, was a powerful weapon in the hands of the police. First, the system was an auxiliary device that facilitated the enforcement of residence and movement restrictions. Second, it was an independent control measure in that it enabled the police to pick up any Jew, anywhere, anytime. Third, and perhaps most important, identification had a paralyzing effect on its victims.

In South Africa during apartheid, pass books were used to regulate the movement of black citizens and segregate the population. The Pass Laws Act of 1952 stipulated where, when, and for how long a black African could remain in certain areas. Any government employee could strike out entries, which canceled the permission to remain in an area. A passbook that did not have a valid entry resulted in the arrest and imprisonment of the bearer.

Identity cards played a crucial role in the genocide of the Tutsis in the central African country of Rwanda. The assault, carried out by extremist Hutu militia groups, lasted around 100 days and resulted in close to a million deaths. While the ID cards were not a precondition to the genocide, they were a facilitating factor. Once the genocide began, the production of an identity card with the designation “Tutsi” spelled a death sentence at any roadblock.

Identity cards have also helped oppressive regimes carry out eliminationist policies such as mass expulsion, forced relocation, and group denationalization. Through the use of identity cards, Ethiopian authorities were able to identify people with Eritrean affiliation during the mass expulsion of 1998. The Vietnamese government was able to locate ethnic Chinese more easily during their 1978-79 expulsion. The USSR used identity cards to force the relocation of ethnic Koreans (1937), Volga Germans (1941), Kamyks and Karachai (1943), Crimean Tartars, Meshkhetian Turks, Chechens, Ingush and Balkars (1944) and ethnic Greeks (1949). And ethnic Vietnamese were identified for group denationalization through identity cards in Cambodia in 1993, as were the Kurds in Syria in 1962.

And in the United States, post-9/11, more than 750 Muslim men were rounded up on the basis of their religion and ethnicity and detained for up to eight months. Their experiences echo those of 120,000 Japanese-Americans who were similarly detained 75 years ago following the attack on Pearl Harbor.

Despite a belated apology and monetary issuance by the U.S. government, the U.S. Supreme Court has yet to declare such a practice illegal. Moreover, laws such as the National Defense Authorization Act (NDAA) empower the government to arrest and detain indefinitely anyone they “suspect” of being an enemy of the state.

You see, you may be innocent of wrongdoing now, but when the standard for innocence is set by the government, no one is safe.

Everyone is a suspect.

And anyone can be a criminal when it’s the government determining what is a crime.

It’s no longer a matter of if, but when.

Remember, the police state does not discriminate.

At some point, it will not matter whether your skin is black or yellow or brown or white. It will not matter whether you’re an immigrant or a citizen. It will not matter whether you’re rich or poor. It won’t even matter whether you’re driving, flying or walking.

After all, government-issued bullets will kill you just as easily whether you’re a law-abiding citizen or a hardened criminal. Government jails will hold you just as easily whether you’ve obeyed every law or broken a dozen. And whether or not you’ve done anything wrong, government agents will treat you like a suspect simply because they have been trained to view and treat everyone like potential criminals.

Eventually, when the police state has turned that final screw and slammed that final door, all that will matter is whether some government agent—poorly trained, utterly ignorant and dismissive of the Constitution, way too hyped up on the power of their badges, and authorized to detain, search, interrogate, threaten and generally harass anyone they see fit—chooses to single you out for special treatment.

We’ve been having this same debate about the perils of government overreach for the past 50-plus years, and still, we don’t seem to learn, or if we learn, we learn too late.

All of the excessive, abusive tactics employed by the government today—warrantless surveillance, stop and frisk searches, SWAT team raids, roadside strip searches, asset forfeiture schemes, private prisons, indefinite detention, militarized police, etc.—started out as a seemingly well-meaning plan to address some problem in society that needed a little extra help.

Be careful what you wish for: you will get more than you bargained for, especially when the government’s involved.

In the case of a national identification system, it might start off as a means of tracking COVID-19 cases in order to “safely” re-open the nation, but it will end up as a means of controlling the American people.

For those tempted to justify these draconian measures for whatever reason—for the sake of their health, the economy, or national security—remember, you can’t have it both ways.

You can’t live in a constitutional republic if you allow the government to act like a police state.

You can’t claim to value freedom if you allow the government to operate like a dictatorship.

You can’t expect to have your rights respected if you allow the government to treat whomever it pleases with disrespect and an utter disregard for the rule of law.

As I make clear in my book Battlefield America: The War on the American People, if you’re inclined to advance this double standard because you believe you have done nothing wrong and have nothing to hide, beware: there’s always a boomerang effect.

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authoritarian Compliance cops are the enemy COVID-19 Death demands Headline News human rights Humans id cards Intelwars LEOs LIES lockdown manufacture consent mass surveillance national security personal information Police State Screening sheep show your papers testing Theft tracing tyranny wake up

The Worst Is Yet to Come: Contact Tracing, Immunity Cards and Mass Testing

This article was originally published by  John W. Whitehead at The Rutherford Institute.

The things we were worried would happen are happening.”—Angus Johnston, professor at the City University of New York

No one is safe.

No one is immune.

No one gets spared the anguish, fear, and heartache of living under the shadow of an authoritarian police state.

That’s the message being broadcast 24/7 with every new piece of government propaganda, every new law that criminalizes otherwise lawful activity, every new policeman on the beat, every new surveillance camera casting a watchful eye, every sensationalist news story that titillates and distracts, every new prison or detention center built to house troublemakers and other undesirables, every new court ruling that gives government agents a green light to strip and steal and rape and ravage the citizenry, every school that opts to indoctrinate rather than educate, and every new justification for why Americans should comply with the government’s attempts to trample the Constitution underfoot.

Yes, COVID-19 has taken a significant toll on the nation emotionally, physically, and economically, but there are still greater dangers on the horizon.

As long as “we the people” continue to allow the government to trample our rights in the so-called name of national security, things will get worse, not better.

It’s already worse.

Now there’s talk of mass testing for COVID-19 antibodies, screening checkpoints, contact tracing, immunity passports to allow those who have recovered from the virus to move around more freely and snitch tip lines for reporting “rule breakers” to the authorities.

If you can’t read the writing on the wall, you need to pay better attention.

These may seem like small, necessary steps in the war against the COVID-19 virus, but they’re only necessary to the police state in its efforts to further undermine the Constitution, extend its control over the populace, and feed its insatiable appetite for ever-greater powers.

Nothing is ever as simple as the government claims it is.

Whatever dangerous practices you allow the government to carry out now—whether it’s in the name of national security or protecting America’s borders or making America healthy again—rest assured, these same practices can and will be used against you when the government decides to set its sights on you.

The war on drugs turned out to be a war on the American people, waged with SWAT teams and militarized police.

The war on terror turned out to be a war on the American people, waged with warrantless surveillance and indefinite detention.

The war on immigration turned out to be a war on the American people, waged with roving government agents demanding “papers, please.”

This war on COVID-19 will be yet another war on the American people, waged with all of the surveillance weaponry at the government’s disposal: thermal imaging cameras, drones, contact tracing, biometric databases, etc.

So you see, when you talk about empowering government agents to screen the populace in order to control and prevent the spread of this virus, what you’re really talking about is creating a society in which ID cards, roundups, checkpoints, and detention centers become routine weapons used by the government to control and suppress the populace, no matter the threat.

This is also how you pave the way for a national identification system of epic proportions.

Imagine it: a national classification system that not only categorizes you according to your health status but also allows the government to sort you in a hundred other ways: by gender, orientation, wealth, medical condition, religious beliefs, political viewpoint, legal status, etc.

Are you starting to get the bigger picture yet?

This is just another wolf in sheep’s clothing, a “show me your papers” scheme disguised as a means of fighting a virus.

Don’t fall for it.

The ramifications of such a “show me your papers” society in which government officials are empowered to stop individuals, demand they identify themselves, and subject them to patdowns, warrantless screenings, searches, and interrogations are beyond chilling.

By allowing government agents to establish a litmus test for individuals to be able to exit a state of lockdown and engage in commerce, movement and any other right that corresponds to life in a supposedly free society, it lays the groundwork for a society in which you are required to identify yourself at any time to any government worker who demands it for any reason.

Such tactics quickly lead one down a slippery slope that ends with government agents empowered to force anyone and everyone to prove they are in compliance with every statute and regulation on the books.

It used to be that unless police had a reasonable suspicion that a person was guilty of wrongdoing, they had no legal authority to stop the person and require identification. In other words, “we the people” had the right to come and go as we please without the fear of being questioned by police or forced to identify ourselves.

Unfortunately, in this age of COVID-19, the unrestricted right to move about freely is being pitted against the government’s power to lock down communities at a moment’s notice. And in this tug-of-war between individual freedoms and government power, “we the people” have been on the losing end of the deal.

Curiously enough, these COVID-19 restrictions dovetail conveniently with a national timeline for states to comply with the Real ID Act, which imposes federal standards on identity documents such as state drivers’ licenses, a prelude to this national identification system.

Talk about a perfect storm for bringing about a national ID card, the ultimate human tracking device.

Granted, in the absence of a national ID card, which would make the police state’s task of monitoring, tracking and singling out individual suspects far simpler, “we the people” are already tracked in a myriad of ways: through our state driver’s licenses, Social Security numbers, bank accounts, purchases, and electronic transactions; by way of our correspondence and communication devices—email, phone calls, and mobile phones; through chips implanted in our vehicles, identification documents, even our clothing.

Add to this the fact that businesses, schools, and other facilities are relying more and more on fingerprints and facial recognition to identify us. All the while, data companies such as Acxiom are capturing vast caches of personal information to help airports, retailers, police, and other government authorities instantly determine whether someone is the person he or she claims to be.

This informational glut—used to great advantage by both the government and corporate sectors—has converged into a mandate for “an internal passport,” a.k.a., a national ID card that would store information as basic as a person’s name, birth date, and place of birth, as well as private information, including a Social Security number, fingerprint, retinal scan, and personal, criminal and financial records.

A federalized, computerized, cross-referenced, databased system of identification policed by government agents would be the final nail in the coffin for privacy (not to mention a logistical security nightmare that would leave Americans even more vulnerable to every hacker in the cybersphere).

Americans have always resisted adopting a national ID card for good reason: it gives the government and its agents the ultimate power to target, track and terrorize the populace according to the government’s own nefarious purposes.

National ID card systems have been used before, by other oppressive governments, in the name of national security, invariably with horrifying results.

For instance, in Germany, the Nazis required all Jews to carry special stamped ID cards for travel within the country. A prelude to the yellow Star of David badges, these stamped cards were instrumental in identifying Jews for deportation to death camps in Poland.

Author Raul Hilberg summarizes the impact that such a system had on the Jews:

The whole identification system, with its personal documents, specially assigned names, and conspicuous tagging in public, was a powerful weapon in the hands of the police. First, the system was an auxiliary device that facilitated the enforcement of residence and movement restrictions. Second, it was an independent control measure in that it enabled the police to pick up any Jew, anywhere, anytime. Third, and perhaps most important, identification had a paralyzing effect on its victims.

In South Africa during apartheid, pass books were used to regulate the movement of black citizens and segregate the population. The Pass Laws Act of 1952 stipulated where, when, and for how long a black African could remain in certain areas. Any government employee could strike out entries, which canceled the permission to remain in an area. A passbook that did not have a valid entry resulted in the arrest and imprisonment of the bearer.

Identity cards played a crucial role in the genocide of the Tutsis in the central African country of Rwanda. The assault, carried out by extremist Hutu militia groups, lasted around 100 days and resulted in close to a million deaths. While the ID cards were not a precondition to the genocide, they were a facilitating factor. Once the genocide began, the production of an identity card with the designation “Tutsi” spelled a death sentence at any roadblock.

Identity cards have also helped oppressive regimes carry out eliminationist policies such as mass expulsion, forced relocation, and group denationalization. Through the use of identity cards, Ethiopian authorities were able to identify people with Eritrean affiliation during the mass expulsion of 1998. The Vietnamese government was able to locate ethnic Chinese more easily during their 1978-79 expulsion. The USSR used identity cards to force the relocation of ethnic Koreans (1937), Volga Germans (1941), Kamyks and Karachai (1943), Crimean Tartars, Meshkhetian Turks, Chechens, Ingush and Balkars (1944) and ethnic Greeks (1949). And ethnic Vietnamese were identified for group denationalization through identity cards in Cambodia in 1993, as were the Kurds in Syria in 1962.

And in the United States, post-9/11, more than 750 Muslim men were rounded up on the basis of their religion and ethnicity and detained for up to eight months. Their experiences echo those of 120,000 Japanese-Americans who were similarly detained 75 years ago following the attack on Pearl Harbor.

Despite a belated apology and monetary issuance by the U.S. government, the U.S. Supreme Court has yet to declare such a practice illegal. Moreover, laws such as the National Defense Authorization Act (NDAA) empower the government to arrest and detain indefinitely anyone they “suspect” of being an enemy of the state.

You see, you may be innocent of wrongdoing now, but when the standard for innocence is set by the government, no one is safe.

Everyone is a suspect.

And anyone can be a criminal when it’s the government determining what is a crime.

It’s no longer a matter of if, but when.

Remember, the police state does not discriminate.

At some point, it will not matter whether your skin is black or yellow or brown or white. It will not matter whether you’re an immigrant or a citizen. It will not matter whether you’re rich or poor. It won’t even matter whether you’re driving, flying or walking.

After all, government-issued bullets will kill you just as easily whether you’re a law-abiding citizen or a hardened criminal. Government jails will hold you just as easily whether you’ve obeyed every law or broken a dozen. And whether or not you’ve done anything wrong, government agents will treat you like a suspect simply because they have been trained to view and treat everyone like potential criminals.

Eventually, when the police state has turned that final screw and slammed that final door, all that will matter is whether some government agent—poorly trained, utterly ignorant and dismissive of the Constitution, way too hyped up on the power of their badges, and authorized to detain, search, interrogate, threaten and generally harass anyone they see fit—chooses to single you out for special treatment.

We’ve been having this same debate about the perils of government overreach for the past 50-plus years, and still, we don’t seem to learn, or if we learn, we learn too late.

All of the excessive, abusive tactics employed by the government today—warrantless surveillance, stop and frisk searches, SWAT team raids, roadside strip searches, asset forfeiture schemes, private prisons, indefinite detention, militarized police, etc.—started out as a seemingly well-meaning plan to address some problem in society that needed a little extra help.

Be careful what you wish for: you will get more than you bargained for, especially when the government’s involved.

In the case of a national identification system, it might start off as a means of tracking COVID-19 cases in order to “safely” re-open the nation, but it will end up as a means of controlling the American people.

For those tempted to justify these draconian measures for whatever reason—for the sake of their health, the economy, or national security—remember, you can’t have it both ways.

You can’t live in a constitutional republic if you allow the government to act like a police state.

You can’t claim to value freedom if you allow the government to operate like a dictatorship.

You can’t expect to have your rights respected if you allow the government to treat whomever it pleases with disrespect and an utter disregard for the rule of law.

As I make clear in my book Battlefield America: The War on the American People, if you’re inclined to advance this double standard because you believe you have done nothing wrong and have nothing to hide, beware: there’s always a boomerang effect.

Share