Aletho News


An Enlightened Man Among Lawyers

The Indian public interest advocate, Prashant Bhushan, lights the path forward.

By John Leake | Courageous Discourse | February 22, 2023

An old friend who loves India once told me it is the only country in which he’d met what he called an “enlightened man.” His understanding of “enlightenment” was influenced by the German philologist, Max Mueller’s translation of the Sanskrit word, Bodhi (German: Erwachen or Erleuchtung) which translates into English as “awaken” or “enlightenment.” While most of us—with our myriad desires, attachments, and fears—blunder through life, he who possesses Bodhi sees through all of the illusions and deceptions.

My friend was convinced that an enlightened man is instantly recognizable as such, because his enlightenment gives him extraordinary calm, cheerfulness, and courage. At the time I heard this, years ago, I figured my friend was just one of many westerners who have romanticized India. But then, at a conference in Delhi on February 7, I met the great Indian lawyer and public interest advocate, Prashant Bhushan.

As he was one of many people I met at the conference, I didn’t initially realize that he is a world-renowned jurist who recently persuaded the Indian Supreme Court to strike down India’s vaccine mandates as unconstitutional. The only detail I caught in our introduction was that he was a medical freedom advocate. I sat next to him on stage with Drs. McCullough and Malhotra. Before the audience was seated and the formal introductions began, I asked him about the origin of the Indian Constitution.

He had the most friendly and elegant way of speaking with great erudition and not a hint of pedantry. And though a relatively small and slightly built man, he seemed to exude an inner strength. After we spoke for a while, Dr. McCullough leaned over to me and said, “It’s not every day you get to meet a guy who argues a case before the Supreme Court and wins.”

“What?” I asked, not entirely believing my ears.

“Yeah!” McCullough said. “Prashant took on the vaccine syndicate in India and won.”

“Wow!” I exclaimed. “What a man!”

During lunch I Googled him and read his Wikipedia entry, which tells of his extraordinary career as public interest advocate for human rights, environmental protection, constitutional protection, and government accountability, performing most of his work pro bono. In a world of selfish greed and corruption, Mr. Bhushan is one of those rare, enlightened souls who really can lead mankind out of the dark.

The Hindu Times published a report on his argument before the Indian Supreme Court. It seems to me that his reasoning and his victory serve as a beacon of hope for everyone who cares about classical liberal principles and constitutional protections.

February 23, 2023 Posted by | Civil Liberties, Timeless or most popular | , , | 5 Comments

Remdesivir Victims Grab Medical Centres By The Throat

New lawsuits have been filed against an array of Community Medical Centres in California over their covid care protocol…

By JJ Starky | The Stark Naked Brief | November 16, 2022

Gilead’s Remdesivir is a drug that has received a lot of criticism, and rightly so.

Prior to the pandemic, the World Health Organisation rejected its use due to poor trial studies abroad. NIAID-sponsored trials had likewise documented troubling issues. Reported adverse events were significant:

In short, a plethora of studies indicated it had potentially bizarre and fatal effects depending on the patient’s health. Patients who had a multi-organ impairment, for example, exhibited detrimental impacts on their renal function after the drug was administered. The FDA, nonetheless, granted its use under Emergency Use Authorisation (EUA) when a study showed it reduced COVID hospitalisation duration by 4 days.

From that point on, Remdesivir became part of every COVID-19 protocol across the country. Reports from 2020 have since revealed that if a vulnerable patient (aged 65 and over) came into a medical centre and tested positive, Remdesivir was the treatment most likely to be offered. That patient would then be placed or declared in the ICU as an inpatient.

Here is where the story turns very sinister.

According to local sources in California, hospitals that took on inpatient complex cases could charge up to 144x more than an outpatient case. As soon as they treated these patients within their facilities, they could apply for reimbursement from Medicare. In other words, there was a clear financial incentive for hospitals to “over-treat” patients to maximise profits.

With these reports now circulating, 14 Californian residents living in the Fresno area have filed lawsuits against various medical centres. These include Community Regional Medical Center, Clovis Community Medical Center, and St. Agnes Medical Center.

One plaintiff’s claim about a medical centre’s covid protocol is particularly reprehensible:

“A patient comes to the hospital often for problem unrelated to COVID-19. They are told they have COVID-19 or ‘COVID pneumonia’. They are immediately separated from their loved ones, and usually declared to be in ICU, even though they are often just placed in room. They are told that the deadly Remdesivir is the only available and safe treatment. They are usually told that if they leave the Hospital against ‘medical advice’ they will void their insurance. They are placed on BiPap machine at high rate, making it difficult for them to breathe. Their hands are often tied down so they can‘t take the BiPap machine off their face. After their hands are tied down, and sometimes before, [a] psychiatrist comes to the room and determines that they are ‘agitated.’ This results in the protocol patient being placed on morphine or something similar. Sedating the patient makes it more difficult for them to communicate and more difficult for them to fight the effects of Remdesivir especially as it relates to their ability to breathe….”

All the lawsuits are being funded by the Arizona-based medical advocacy nonprofit Truth For Health Foundation. The organisation is run by Elizabeth Lee Vliet MD. Currently, the three aforementioned lawsuits will return to court for case management in January.

Note: These claims do not concern ‘End-Of-Life Care Protocols’. They concern COVID care protocols in general. We’ve seen similar claims made in the UK regarding Midazolam but again this concerned ‘End-Of-Life’ care. These lawsuits could well lift the thickly-blackened veil (for the wider masses) on the medical industry’s capacity to treat patients like cattle.

February 23, 2023 Posted by | Deception, Science and Pseudo-Science, Timeless or most popular, War Crimes | , , , , | Leave a comment

Government Severely Downplaying Scale of Chemical Disaster, 9/11 Victims’ Lawyer Says

Sputnik – 23.02.2023

Despite investing hundreds of billions of dollars via the Bipartisan Infrastructure Deal, dozens of trains in the US continue to derail every year, resulting in massive damage to people and the environment.

“I’ve seen the pictures of the bubbling in the water. I’ve seen the pictures of the dead animals. I wouldn’t drink that water, would you?” Michael Barasch, a 9/11 Ground Zero victims’ attorney, told American media.

The lawyer warned of an impending mass outbreak of cancer in the affected population as a result of the massive derailment of a train transporting chemicals in Ohio. He also urged not to be swayed by claims of government agencies that there is no danger, advising them to fight for their rights and protect themselves. One of the components carried by the ill-fated train, vinyl chloride, has previously been linked to the development of various cancerous tumors.

“This is an explosion of cancers waiting to happen. And you won’t see it for years — sometimes 5, 10, 20 years. This is scary stuff,” Michael Barasch, the attorney said.

A train derailment near the town of East Palestine, Ohio, on February 3 caused massive pollution, as the train was carrying hazardous chemicals. For some three weeks now, the Department of Transportation’s leadership, headed by Pete Buttigieg, has been criticized in the media for failing to act . On February 21, the head of the department said he plans to visit the site of the tragedy, but has so far not given a specific date for the trip, although he regularly appears at a variety of public events.

The train was carrying about 1.1 million pounds of vinyl chloride, butyl acrylate, isobutylene, and other highly hazardous chemicals. Lawyer Michael Barasch, who has helped thousands of 9/11 victims get medical treatment, criticized claims by the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) that the water was drinkable and the air in the area was safe.

This all comes against the backdrop of the Bipartisan Infrastructure Deal, in place since November 2021, which has been touted by President Joe Biden as one of the most ambitious infrastructure renewal projects in US history. Designed among other things to renew rail infrastructure with billions of dollars in investment, thousands of train accidents continue to occur in the US every year, including more than a dozen major accidents in the past year.

February 23, 2023 Posted by | Timeless or most popular | | Leave a comment

TSA Still Molesting at Warp Speed

By Jim Bovard | The Libertarian Institute | February 23, 2023

I traveled to Hartford, Connecticut last week for a conference. It was the first time since the start of the pandemic that I had the pleasure of being pawed by TSA agents. Alas, since 2020, neither I nor the Transportation Security Administration have become corrigible.

Flying out of Washington National Airport on Thursday, I saw a special entry for the CLEAR program that enables people who pay $189 a year to skip TSA lines. I lambasted this program here back in December. Travelers stand in photo kiosks that compare their face with a federal database of photos from passport applications, drivers’ licenses ,and other sources. TSA promises that its new airport regime will respect Americans’ privacy. Fat chance: TSA previously promised no traveler would be delayed more than 10 minutes at TSA checkpoints.

I stood and watched semi-frazzled travelers enter a roped-off expanse to get TSA approval for their visage.

A skinny young woman with a CLEAR t-shirt and a clipboard was standing guard at the entrance of the biometric site. She looked like a cherub with long straight red hair and a welcoming smile. Who could suspect that, as The Washington Post warned, the new system could be “America’s biggest step yet to normalize treating our faces as data that can be stored, tracked and, inevitably, stolen”?

“How soon will they be making the biometric checks mandatory?” I asked her.

“I don’t know anything about that,” she replied, as if I’d asked about the surface temperature of the planet Venus.

“Do people ever complain about having to do the biometric checks?

“No, this is voluntary,” she replied with a smile wider than a Kamala Harris grimace.

She was a good Washingtonian: she could never imagine any federal agency flogging hell out of the Constitution. I considered peppering her with another half dozen questions but wanted to keep my sarcasm fresh for dealing with TSA agents. My hunch was that the redheaded cherub was not a regular reader of the Libertarian Institute.

I finished guzzling my morning coffee I fetched from home and tossed the used Gatorade bottle into the giant trash barrel at the entrance to the TSA queue. The previous time I went through a TSA checkpoint at National Airport, TSA agents got riled up because I forgot to take off my belt. That spurred an enhanced patdown, a verbal brawl, and an article I wrote that the Minneapolis Star Tribune headlined, “The World’s Most Incompetent Agency.”

Seeking to avoid another kerfuffle, I sought to comply with the TSA checkpoint regimen.

I took off my boots and belt and took all the metal clutter out of my pockets.

I passed through and—beep—another alarm. WTF?

A TSA agent pointed to the giant video screen on the controlled side of the checkpoint, revealing a bright yellow splotch that proved that my derriere failed federal inspection.

“That’s my wallet,” I said.

“You aren’t allowed to have that in the scanner. We have to do a patdown.”

So I’m supposed to abandon my wallet to rascals notorious for robbing travelers? More than 500 TSA agents have been fired for stealing laptops, cell phones, and other property at checkpoints and in luggage screening.

Another TSA agent shuffled up to find my terrorist contraband. This dude was in his 20s but he looked weary before his time. He explained that he would perform a supplemental enhanced patdown on my backside.

“Are you going to jam my groin?” I growled.

“No, we’re not going to do that.”

“Yeah, OK, whatever.”

He proceeded to run his hands and his TSA Terrorist Catcher Magic Wand over my thighs and butt. I refrained from muttering that he got further than I usually did on first dates long ago. He then checked the inside of my thighs and signaled I could leave. I kept my profanity in reserve for the return flight.

Coming back through Hartford on Sunday afternoon, I was chagrined to see a long line of docile folks waiting to receive TSA blessings. I entered the queue and a scrawny, 70ish guy with his right arm in a sling came in behind me. He was struggling with his carry-on bag so I guessed his arm injury was recent.

He groused that he had paid for TSA Pre-Check but they hadn’t allowed him to use it that day. TSA Pre-Check customers usually avoid Whole Body Scanners—another reminder that the entire system is a charade.

“Where are you going?” he asked.

“I’m going to Washington but I don’t work for the feds.”

“Good,” he replied. He said he was going to Fort Lauderdale and I said that was a helluva friendlier place than D.C.

Over the years, I enjoy drawing out folks to see if they recognize TSA’s “security theater.” This guy got it.

I mentioned that I might have problems today at the checkpoint because TSA hates me.

“Why do they hate you?” he asked.

“Because I have flogged them in print for 20 years. Their scanners fail to catch mock bombs and weapons in 95% of the tests by undercover agents. Their explosive detection tests are so harebrained that they are triggered by hand sanitizer. The TSA chief denounced me for maligning and disparaging TSA employees.”

He smiled.

“But I don’t know why they would ever suspect me because I was a Boy Scout.”

He laughed and said he’d been a Scout as well. “But your hat makes you suspicious,” he added.

It was a bulky brown hat I’d recently picked up in Tennessee. I didn’t realize till afterwards that it was the “Bootlegger” design. I said that if I was flying out of North Carolina, my hat would fit right in. But here in Connecticut, I was screwed.

As we got near the checkpoint, I tugged off my belt and began unlacing my heavy boots. “You can go ahead of me—this will take awhile,” I told the elderly gentleman.

“No, no—you go first,” he insisted. He absolutely, positively did not want to go just before me.

As I stood waiting my cameo in the Whole Body Scanner, I heard him explain to a TSA agent that he had metal knee and hip replacements. They signaled for him to step through a side gate next to the scanner.

I ambled into the screener radiating as much disdain as I could muster on a Sunday afternoon. A TSA agent barked that my feet were in the wrong place; I had to make sure I put my socks in the cut-out drawing. Yeah, yeah…

“Hold your arms up higher,” she ordered.

That woman sounded as dumb as my high school gym teacher.

She signaled me to exit and then another agent came up with a TSA magic wand and signaled that I must halt.

“We have to check you,” a tall, spindly young guy announced.

“What was the problem?” I growled.

“The scanner alerted for something around your shoulders and upper arms.”

I have been working on my bench press lately but I didn’t think the results were that impressive.

He waved the wand and found nothing and signaled I could move along.

“What might have triggered the alert?” I asked.

“I dunno. It could have been the heavy shirt.”

Maybe they thought the wool in my shirt came from sheep that were raised by Al Qaeda in Yemen?

As I tracked down my carry-on bag and boots on the carousel, I saw a TSA agent barking orders to the old guy with the arm in a sling.

“Do you want the supplemental screening to take place here or in a private room?” the TSA agent with a vapid visage badgered him.

I was tempted to shout: don’t go in the private room! But the guy had good instincts and said on his own that he wanted the patdown in public. At least it would be videotaped if the process went to hell in a handbasket.

The agent kept going up and down the old guy with the wand, poking and prodding and repeatedly ordering him to change his posture. The man looked humiliated at being treated like a terrorist suspect in front of so many bystanders. I don’t have that reaction to extra patdowns because I don’t give a damn for the opinions of TSA agents or anyone who happily submits to their boneheaded antics. But I could tell from the expression on the guy’s face that he was shocked.

He was finally released from TSA custody and shuffled with his shoes and belts to a nearby bench. As he was putting himself back together, I came up to offer condolences.

“I think it was the sling—that’s why they targeted me,” he said.

“They could have easily checked if you had a bomb or a gun in the sling without groping you all over but they didn’t do that,” I scoffed.

He put his head down and wished me a good trip.

“As a fellow American, I’m sorry how they treated you.”

My comment seemed to stun him. But more than twenty years after 9/11, TSA has no right to continue treating Americans like convicts waiting to enter a prison shower. TSA has taken menstruating women to private rooms to force them to lower their pants to prove they are bleeding—an abuse that has spurred multiple federal lawsuits. TSA effectively claims that Americans have no constitutional rights because they “voluntarily” submit to searches for permission to fly. That legal hogwash entitles them to endlessly harass hapless citizens. 

Despite squeezing millions of butts and boobs, TSA has never caught a real terrorist. TSA should be abolished and replaced by the type of private security companies that protect European and Canadian fliers without endless BS from officialdom.

Jim Bovard is the author of Public Policy Hooligan (2012), Attention Deficit Democracy (2006), Lost Rights: The Destruction of American Liberty (1994), and 7 other books.

February 23, 2023 Posted by | Civil Liberties, Full Spectrum Dominance | , , | Leave a comment

I was a prisoner in Guantanamo Bay Detention Camp, but who is its biggest captive?

By Mansoor Adayfi | MEMO | February 23, 2023

It was 21 years ago this month that I was flown in the belly of a US cargo plane, hooded, blindfolded, gagged and chained in an orange jumpsuit, for over 40 hours. I didn’t know where I was being taken, or why.

My journey into the unknown started when I was sold to the CIA as an “Egyptian Al-Qaida general” in 2001 after the US invaded Afghanistan. I was 18 years old, and I am from Yemen. After I was imprisoned for around three months in a black site in Afghanistan, I was taken to Kandahar military prison, an airbase that served as a transit station to the unknown. I wasn’t the only one being held there.

When a huge cargo plane landed in Kandahar three weeks later, we all knew that some of us would disappear. Without being able to see, hear or speak, we were dragged to the first plane blindfolded, and then chained to the floor. It was a journey of pain and suffering. When the plane eventually landed, we hoped it would be the end to our suffering. It wasn’t. It was only the beginning of a longer, more brutal journey.

Soldiers never seem to get tired of the beating and shouting. When the second flight ended, it was still not the end of the journey. The US marines snatched and dragged me onto a bus, and then onto a ferry. Where was I going? The first clue came from the sea, which was the first friend who welcomed me. A marine shouted in English and an Arab marine translated: “You are under the control of the US marines!” They continued to shout and physically assault us for the rest of the way.

The ferry eventually docked and a bus took us on the final leg of the journey. We were disembarked by being snatched, one after another. I was forced to sit on my knees for hours. The duct tape over my mouth blocked my screams. Every cell in my body was screaming but no one could hear my cries. They could see the pain, and I felt like maybe their twisted humanity was screaming back, too.

After going through the processing station —where we experienced humiliation and degradation over and over again — soldiers dragged my naked body over sharp gravel to a cage where an IRF (Immediate Reaction Force) team piled on top of me and started removing the chains violently; then the hood, goggles, earmuffs and the duct tape. Soldiers shouted into my ears, “DETAINEE 441! STOP RESISTING!” Resisting? I was barely breathing. Without knowing it, what they did at that moment was introduce the word “resist” into my mental landscape. That’s what I needed to do; I just had no idea how.

At night, it took a while for my sight to come back, but it was still blurry. All I could see was an ocean of orange figures caged just like me, all I could hear were rattling chains, slamming doors, soldiers shouting in their loudest voice, “SHUT THE F**K UP, DON’T LOOK AT ME, LOOK DOWN, NO TALKING!” The dogs barking in the near distance sounded less aggressive than them. The barking never stopped. As in never. It sounded as though they were protesting at the inhumane treatment in their own way.

On my first morning in Guantanamo Bay Detention Camp — for that is where I was — I took a long look around me. I found myself caged in a rose chain-link cage where even animals wouldn’t survive. There were many others there too. I could see swollen faces with bruises, black eyes, shaved heads and faces, split lips and bleeding wounds. We all looked the same. It was like a signature that the soldiers wanted to leave on us all. US President George W. Bush and his administration needed to prove that they were “winning” the “War on Terror”, so they called us the worst of the worst.

We were dragged to this unknown place from different parts of the world; some of us were sold for a bounty and some were handed over to the CIA by their own governments. It was the first time in history that such a thing was done: there we were; 800 men and children — yes, children — from 50 nationalities, speaking over 20 different languages, having different mindsets and cultures, snatched and flown to a dark hole hidden from the rest of the world. This American prison camp wasn’t even in America.

Everything was taken from us, and we became just orange figures with numbers printed on a bracelet locked on our wrists. Our captors stripped us of our freedom and imprisoned our bodies and wanted to control us and deny our humanity, but they failed to understand that what really makes us unique individuals are characteristics such as our names, values, relations, morals, beliefs, ethics, emotions, memories, language, knowledge, experiences, talents, feelings, dreams, nationalities and, of course, our innate distinctive humanity. These were part of another DNA, and a survival kit which the US government didn’t want to know about. They thought that they could control our bodies and freedom, but they would never control our hearts and souls.

Yes, we were isolated and disconnected from our families and the rest of the world, but even in America’s dark hole, life won. We created our own world. Yes, we were tortured and abused, but we also sang, danced, resisted and survived. Also, we soon found other generous guests at Guantanamo who came to visit us regularly, who challenged the US restrictions and never had CIA clearance to visit. They came to share our meals, to listen to us, and to tell us that everything will be okay. We became friends and families with the iguanas, cats, birds and banana rats.

Guantanamo started with a selection of Muslims from around the world, but it kept changing, evolving and growing. We lived through Camp X-Ray, Camp Delta, Camp 5, Camp 6, Camp Echo and others. We went through the torture programmes and abuse by interrogators, psychologists and a whole host of camp staff. We went on hunger strike to protest against the torture and injustice, only to be tortured more. We lived through all the years of Guantanamo: we lived through its Dark Age, its Golden Age, and back again to the Dark Age. With each year we grew older and our imprisonment only settled into us more deeply. Our captors got more creative in developing torture techniques to break us and to try to turn us into something we were not.

To survive through the darkness in that dark hole, we only had each other and whatever makes us human beings. We were fathers, husbands, brothers and sons from different parts of the world. Some of us were teachers, doctors, soldiers, commanders, journalists, lawyers, tribal elders, mafia men, poets and professors; and some were spies. We had no shared life before Guantanamo, nothing in common. At first, we started introducing ourselves to each other, and getting to know each other. I wish our captives had taken time to get to know who we really were as well, instead of just needing to prove that we were hardened terrorists.

The cycle of hardship and the torture we endured forged strong bonds of brotherhood and friendship that helped us to survive. We started developing a new shared life and a new “us” at Guantanamo. Our brains started constructing new memories, relations, knowledge and experiences, but everything related back to and was based on Guantanamo life. Sharing our knowledge, experience and culture with each other created a beautiful Guantanamo where we sang songs in different languages, danced dances from different cultures, and laughed and cried together. After years, we grew together and became part of each other’s lives and memories. Guantanamo became part of us and part of our life. Guantanamo kept growing, evolving and changing, feeding on our lives and humanity. With it, we grew old too.

We weren’t the only victims of Guantanamo: all Americans and America’s values and justice system were as well. There were many Americans who came to work in the detention camp, and they became victims too when they refused to abandon their humanity and treat us badly. Some took a stand against the system and were imprisoned; others were fired or demoted. We fought for them as much as we fought for each other because they were humans and victims too, regardless of their nationality or which side they were on. Injustice has no boundaries, colour or nationality. As we were living in Guantanamo, we didn’t want anyone else to experience it.

Through the Dark Age of 2002-2010, we protested and carried out hunger strikes for years. We fought back as much as we could; we learned from each other and taught each other. In Guantanamo’s Golden Age we learned English and art; we painted and we made ships, cabinets, trees, all from remnants of trash and leftover cardboard.

In Guantanamo, I grew up, from a young boy to a caged man. My world was Guantanamo and it’s where half of my life was taken, where days, months and years were the same.

Then after around 15 years, I was forced to leave Guantanamo the way that I was taken there, hooded and chained. When they came to tell me about my release, they told me, “You have no choice.” I made peace with Guantanamo in Guantanamo and made the decision that it wouldn’t change me; it’s part of me and of who I am.

The whole world agrees that Guantanamo is a stain on our humanity and one of the biggest human right violations of the 21st century. There are those who tortured and abused us at Guantanamo who are still bragging about their time there and their work. Their humanity was the first real victim of that place.

Despite all these reflections, though, Guantanamo hasn’t left us yet. Even today, there are 34 men still in Guantanamo, 20 of whom have been cleared for release. There are many calls for the closure of America’s black hole detention centre. For us, closing Guantanamo does not only mean shutting down the facility, but also there being full accountability for the US government for what happened there: acknowledgment of the cruel and inhumane treatment, a full and unreserved apology, and reparations for the victims.

Guantanamo symbolises oppression, injustice, torture and lawlessness. In this way, Guantanamo is now everywhere, and I can say — in the strangest of ironies — that even though we were prisoners of the US destructive “War on Terror”, the United States is and always has been a prisoner of its own violence. Guantanamo is yet another chapter of this violence and one whose legacy will live on long after the prison is closed. The United State of America itself is Guantanamo’s greatest captive.

February 23, 2023 Posted by | Subjugation - Torture, Timeless or most popular, War Crimes | , , | 2 Comments

Google Expands Campaign to ‘Inoculate’ People Against ‘Misinformation,’ But Critics Say It’s All About Money

By Suzanne Burdick, Ph.D. | The Defender | February 22, 2023

Google said last week it plans to expand into Germany its campaign to “inoculate” people against misinformation — as if it were a virus — after seeing “promising results” in Eastern Europe.

The campaign is based on an approach called “prebunking” designed to teach people how to spot false claims before encountering them, thereby “inoculating” them against the “disease” of misinformation “like a vaccine does” against a physical disease, Euronews reported.

The tech giant will release a series of short videos that highlight techniques — such as fear-mongering, scapegoating, false comparisons, exaggeration and missing context — that are commonly used to promote misleading claims.

The videos dissect these different techniques so viewers can more readily recognize them when consuming media.

Proponents of the campaign say it’s an “efficient way to address misinformation at scale.”

But some critics allege Google’s campaign is selectively targeting information related to corporate and government interests and is motivated by money rather than a sincere desire to protect readers from false information.

“They [Google’s leaders] want Google to be what they see as a safe place for advertisers,” said Clayton Morris, a former Fox News anchor who co-hosts the online news show “Redacted.”

Videos to run as ads on Facebook, YouTube, TikTok

Google’s “prebunking” videos will run as advertisements on FacebookYouTube or TikTok in Germany. A similar campaign in India is also in the works, the AP reported.

Last fall, Google ran a test video campaign in Poland, the Czech Republic and Slovakia.

The campaign focused on inoculating viewers against “false claims about Ukrainian refugees” and showed techniques commonly used to support such claims, such as alarming or unfounded stories about refugees committing crimes or taking jobs away from residents.

The AP did not report the specific statements regarding Ukrainian refugees that Google deemed as false.

The videos were viewed 38 million times on Facebook, TikTok, YouTube and Twitter.

Researchers said people who viewed the videos were more likely to be able to identify misinformation techniques and less likely to spread false claims than people who hadn’t watched the video.

‘You can think of misinformation as a virus’

Alex Mahadevan, director of MediaWise, a media literacy initiative of the Poynter Institute, told the AP that the strategy was a “pretty efficient way to address misinformation at scale, because you can reach a lot of people while at the same time address a wide range of misinformation.”

In November 2022, Google and YouTube gave the Poynter Institute $13.5 million to strengthen its fact-checking efforts with $12 million earmarked to create a Global Fact Check Fund.

“You can think of misinformation as a virus,” Sander van der Linden, Ph.D., professor of social psychology in society at the University of Cambridge, told the AP. “It spreads. It lingers. It can make people act in certain ways.”

It also sometimes needs a periodic “booster,” according to the AP, because the effects of the videos eventually wear off.

Van der Linden assisted Google in developing its prebunking campaign and is presently advising Meta, which owns Facebook and Instagram, the AP said.

Google announced its expanded campaign just before the Feb. 17 start of the Munich Security Conference.

According to the AP, the timing of the announcement reflected the heightened concerns of government officials and tech companies regarding the impact of misinformation.

“There’s a real appetite for solutions,” Beth Goldberg, head of research and development at Jigsaw, a unit of Google that “explores threats to open societies,” told the AP. “Using ads as a vehicle to counter a disinformation technique is pretty novel. And we’re excited about the results.”

Google has not announced plans to expand its campaign to the U.S., so it remains unknown if and when the California-based company will apply its misinformation prebunking tactics on its home turf.

‘Prebunking’ campaign more about promoting ‘corporate and government interests,’ say critics

Commenting on Google’s latest announcement, “Redacted” co-host Natali Morris said, “It’s clear the corporate idea of disinformation is really only related to corporate and government interests — not at all to human interest.”

The topics addressed by Google’s misinformation campaign, such as COVID-19 and climate change, are topics “that will either give governments or corporations more power,” Natali said.

Meanwhile, other topics of human interest — such as child trafficking — remain untouched by Google, she said.

Clayton Morris, who co-hosts “Redacted” with his wife Natali, said he believed Google’s efforts to fight misinformation are motivated by money.

For example, Clayton said, companies like Pfizer and Moderna spend billions of dollars in advertising and Google wants to be an “advertiser-friendly environment” so it “pushes down” information and opinions that criticize the companies’ pharmaceutical products.

“Imagine if Pfizer execs are sitting there and they’re thinking about where to put their ad dollars and they start seeing Google search results that are like Pfizer this, Pfizer that … that’s why they [Google] downrank all of this stuff to push that stuff away and they continue to make their good ad revenue,” he said.

Now the pharmaceutical companies don’t even have to produce ads anymore because Google is essentially doing it for them, Natali added.

“Imagine what a prebunking video would look like around a COVID vaccine,” she said.

Suzanne Burdick, Ph.D., is a reporter and researcher for The Defender based in Fairfield, Iowa. She holds a Ph.D. in Communication Studies from the University of Texas at Austin (2021), and a master’s degree in communication and leadership from Gonzaga University (2015). Her scholarship has been published in Health Communication. She has taught at various academic institutions in the United States and is fluent in Spanish.

This article was originally published by The Defender — Children’s Health Defense’s News & Views Website under Creative Commons license CC BY-NC-ND 4.0. Please consider subscribing to The Defender or donating to Children’s Health Defense.

February 23, 2023 Posted by | Full Spectrum Dominance | , | Leave a comment

‘Hypocritical hysteria’: Ex-UK MP says targeted for Palestine advocacy on Press TV

Former Labour MP Chris Williamson has been hosting Press TV’s weekly show, Palestine Declassified, since March 2022.
By Syed Zafar Mehdi | Press TV | February 23, 2023

A former UK Labour Party MP, Chris Williamson, was on Tuesday stripped of his parliamentary pass until further notice by a committee of lawmakers in what he described as “confected controversy.”

The 66-year-old seasoned British politician and human rights campaigner, who served as the MP for Derby North from 2010 to 2015 and again between 2017 and 2019, had since July 2020 been in possession of one of more than 300 security passes given to former parliamentarians.

The pass was revoked over what the committee termed his “unacceptable” role as a co-host of the weekly show ‘Palestine Declassified’ on Press TV, Iran’s premier international news network.

“The Administration Committee met yesterday and decided to suspend your parliamentary pass until further notice,” the committee chair and conservative MP Charles Walker wrote to Williamson in a comminque.

“The Committee considered that your continued presence on Press TV, a broadcaster that has been banned in the UK and multiple other countries, is unacceptable and risks bringing Parliament into disrepute.”

Speaking to the Press TV Website, Williamson said he “wasn’t surprised” by the arbitrary decision, noting that the political class in the UK has been “gripped by a kind of hypocritical hysteria”.

“The grounds for the arbitrary cancellation of my pass are absurd. They claim that my presence on Press TV ‘risks bringing parliament into disrepute’,” asserted Williamson, one of the closest allies of former Labour leader Jeremy Corbyn and author of ‘Ten Years Hard Labour’.

“But it’s their attack on free speech that is bringing parliament into disrepute, not the fact that I present a weekly programme on Press TV about Palestine’s struggle for freedom.”

The former British shadow minister who has previously been falsely accused of ‘anti-Semitism” said he never used his parliamentary pass since leaving the job in 2019 and was being targeted for championing the Palestinian cause and “exposing the brutal Israeli apartheid regime”.

He hastened to add that he intends to “write back” to Charles Walker and ask the committee to “think again in view of the absurdity and inconsistency of their position”.

A staunch socialist, trade unionist and anti-imperialist, Williamson has been co-hosting the ‘Palestine Declassified’ show on Press TV since March 2022 with David Miller, a former Bristol University professor who was sacked in October 2021 for his views on Israeli apartheid.

The popular show highlights with cutting-edge research and analysis the Israeli regime’s unbridled aggression in the occupied Palestinian territories and seeks to build global solidarity for the Palestinian cause. To a great extent, it has been successful in that goal.

Pertinently, Press TV was taken off air in the UK in January 2012 by media regulator Ofcom, which accused the network of “breaching broadcasting license rules” with its “editorial content”.

The network, in a statement at the time, called the decision “a clear example of censorship”.

“It is precisely because I host a programme about Palestine that’s broadcasted by Press TV, and because I have criticized the (British) government’s support for NATO’s proxy war in Ukraine,” Williamson told the Press TV Website, commenting on his parliamentary pass being stripped.

“MPs have used these two facts as a pretext for spurious complaints, suggesting that I therefore pose some sort of security risk. It is utterly absurd and frankly insulting”.

He decried the smear campaign and attacks against Press TV, saying it was “off the scale”.

“The hypocrisy over the treatment of Press TV is off the scale. But it indicates that the ruling class is insecure in their position, so we should take heart from that and keep going.”

The former MP also called out the “disturbing scale of censorship” in British society, saying the ability to speak out against the prevailing establishment narrative is “strictly restricted”.

“Little to no platform is provided by the corporate media to articulate a contrary viewpoint, and even access to social media is being restricted,” he told the Press TV Website.

“Academics have lost their careers for speaking out against the evils of Zionism for example, and anyone calling for a diplomatic solution is dismissed as a ‘Putin apologist’.”

Williamson further noted that the Zionist lobby and acolytes of the NATO military alliance in the British parliament exert an “entirely disproportionate influence”.

“The British political class only represent the interests of powerful lobbies, rather than the wellbeing of the communities they are elected to serve, and on whose votes they rely for their privileged positions,” he said, pointing to the gap between the rulers and the subjects.

A strong anti-war and anti-racism voice who has resolutely opposed the war in Ukraine – which completes one year this week – Williamson said the Nazi influence in Ukraine is “well-documented” while calling the embattled Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelensky “NATO’s useful idiot”.

“The ultimate ambition of the war hawks in the US is to weaken and ultimately balkanize Russia, and then pivot against China,” Williamson asserted, adding that the European governments are “allowing themselves to be used to help the US retain its dominant position in the unipolar world”.

“The US Defense Department openly commissions a report by the Rand Corporation on ways to achieve their goal against Russia. Furthermore, prominent figures in the Atlantic Council, NATO’s de-facto think tank, were setting out the strategic case for risking war with Russia in Ukraine before the present military conflict began,” he said, pinning the blame on the US-led NATO military alliance for the simmering crisis in Ukraine.

Meanwhile, the staunch advocate for the Palestinian cause vowed to continue his advocacy work for the weak and vulnerable irrespective of whether he holds the parliamentary pass or not.

“Whatever dirty tricks they deploy against me, these political lackeys of the war machine and parliamentary servants of Israel’s brutal apartheid regime, they will never stop me campaigning for peace and supporting the liberation of Palestine,” Williamson asserted.

He also invoked the 20th-century Nobel Prize-winning Chilean poet, Pablo Neruda, that these out-of-touch politicians “can cut all the flowers but cannot keep spring from coming”.

“And I believe the day is coming when Palestine will be free from the river to the sea.”

Syed Zafar Mehdi is a Tehran-based journalist, political commentator and author. He has reported for more than 13 years from India, Afghanistan, Pakistan, Kashmir and West Asia for leading publications worldwide.

February 23, 2023 Posted by | Full Spectrum Dominance | , | Leave a comment

The Plan to Wreck America


In America, we have an oligarch problem, and it’s much bigger than the oligarch problem that Putin faced when he became president in 2000. The entire West is now in the grips of billionaire elites who have a stranglehold on the media, the political establishment and all of our important institutions. In recent years we have seen these oligarchs expand their influence from markets, finance and trade to politics, social issues and even public health. The impact this group has had on these other areas of interest, has been nothing short of breathtaking. Establishment elites and their media not only stood foursquare behind Russiagate, the Trump impeachment, the BLM riots and the January 6 fiasco, they also had a hand in the Covid hysteria and the host of repressive measures that were imposed in the name of public health. What we’d like to know is to what extent this group is actively involved in the shaping of other events that are aimed at transforming the American Republic into a more authoritarian system?

In other words, are the mandated injections, the forced lockdowns, the aggressive government-implemented censorship, the dubious presidential elections, the burning of food processing plants, the derailing of trains, the attacks on the power grid, the BLM-Antifa riots, the drag queen shows for schoolchildren, the maniacal focus on gender issues, and glitzy public show-trials merely random incidents occurring spontaneously during a period of great social change or are they, in fact, evidence of a stealthily orchestrated operation conducted by agents of the state acting on behalf of their elite benefactors? We already know that the FBI, the DOJ and the intel agencies were directly involved in Russiagate –which was a covert attack on the sitting president of the United States. So, the question is not “whether” these agencies are actively involved in other acts of treachery but, rather, to what extent these acts impact the lives or ordinary Americans, our politics and the country? But before we answer that question, take a look at this quote from from a recent interview by Colonel Douglas MacGregor:

I was reading a document that was authored by George Soros over 10 years ago in which he talks specifically about this all-out war that would ultimately come against Russia because he said this ‘was the last nationalist state that rests on a foundation of orthodox christian culture with Russian identity at its core. That has to be removed. So I think that the people who are in charge in the west and the people in charge in Washington think they have successfully destroyed the identities of the European and American peoples, that we have no sense of ourselves, our borders are undefended, we present no resistance to the incoming migrants from the developing world who essentially roll over us as though we owe them a living and that our laws do not count. Thus, far I would say that is an accurate evaluation of what we’ve been doing. And I think that’s a great victory for George Soros and the globalists, the anti-nationalists; those who want open borders what they call it an “Open Society” because you end up with nothing, an amorphous mass of people struggling to survive who are reduced to the lowest levels of subsistence … (Soros) even goes so far as to talk about how useful it would be if it was east Europeans whose lives were expended in this process and not west Europeans who simply won’t take the casualties. This is not a minor matter. This is the kind of thinking that is so destructive and so evil, in my judgement, that that’s what we’re really dealing with in our own countries and I think Putin recognizes that.” (Douglas Macgregor – A Huge Offensive”, You Tube, 11:20 minute)

The reason I transcribed this comment from MacGregor was because it sums up the perceptions of a great many people who see things the same way. It expresses the hatred that globalist billionaires have toward Christians and patriots, both of which they see as obstacles to their goal of a borderless one-world government. MacGregor discusses this phenom in relation to Russia which Soros sees as “the last nationalist state that rests on a foundation of orthodox Christian culture with Russian identity at its core.” But the same rule could be applied to the January 6 protestors, could it not? Isn’t that the real reason the protestors were rounded up and thrown into the Washington gulag. After all, everyone knows there was no “insurrection” nor were there any “white supremacists”. The protestors were locked up because they’re nationalists (patriots) which are the natural enemy of the globalists. The MacGregor quote lays it out in black and white. Elites don’t believe that nationalists can be persuaded by propaganda. They must be eradicated through incarceration or worse. Isn’t that the underlying message of January 6?

The other underlying message of January 6, is that ordinary people are no longer allowed to challenge the authority of the people in power. Again, political legitimacy in the US has always been determined by elections. What January 6 indicates, is that legitimacy no longer matters. What matters is power, and the person who can have you arrested for questioning his authority, has all the power he needs. Check out this excerpt from a post on Substack by political analyst Kurt Nimmo:

“Klaus Schwab, a student of the war criminal Henry Kissinger, is a mentor to power-hungry and narcissistic sociopaths. The WEF “Great Reset” is designed to turn the world into an impoverished social concentration camp, where destitute serfs “own nothing” and this, in true Orwellian fashion, will set them free…

I challenge people to investigate the WEF’s Global Redesign Initiative. According to the Transnational Institute in the Netherlands, this “initiative” proposes

a transition away from intergovernmental decision-making towards a system of multi-stakeholder governance. In other words, by stealth, they are marginalizing a recognized model where we vote in governments who then negotiate treaties which are then ratified by our elected representatives with a model where a self-selected group of ‘stakeholders’ make decisions on our behalf. (Emphasis added.)

In other words, large transnational corporate “stakeholders” will be deciding where you live, what you eat (insects and weeds), how you reproduce (or not reproduce; children produce carbon emissions), and what you can “rent” from them, or not be allowed to rent if you complain about an unelected globalist “economic” cartel driving humanity into serfdom, worldwide poverty, and depopulation.” (“WEF Calls for Destruction of America’s Middle Class“, Kurt Nimmo on Geopolitics)

What Nimmo is saying is that these billionaire elites are now so powerful, that they can openly say they’re going to “transition away from intergovernmental decision-making” (ie– representative government”) to a system of “multi-stakeholder governance.” If I’m not mistaken, that is a pretty unambiguous declaration of a new form of supra-national government, in which only the billionaire stakeholders have a vote in what policies are implemented. But isn’t that the way things work already? On any number of topics from ESG, to digital currencies, to vaccine passports, to AI, to gain-of-function research, to 15-minute cities, to transhumanism, to war with Russia; the decisions are all being made by a handful of people of whom we know every little and who were never voted into office.

And that brings us back to our original question: How many of these oddball events (in recent years) were conjured up and implemented by agents of the deep state to advance the elitist agenda?

This seems like an impossible question since it’s hard to find a link between these dramatically diverse events. For example, what is the link between a Drag Queen Children’s Hour and, let’s say, firebombing a food processing plant in Oklahoma? Or the relentless political exploitation of gender issues and the January 6 public show trials? If there was a connection, we’d see it, right?

Not necessarily, because the link might not have anything to do with the incident itself, but instead, with its impact on the people who experience it. In other words, all of these events could be aimed at generating fear, uncertainty, anxiety, alienation and even terror. Have the intelligence agencies launched such destabilizing operations before?

Indeed, they have, many times. Here’s an excerpt from an article that will help you to see where I’m going with this. It’s from a piece at The Saker titled “Operation Gladio: NATO’s Secret War for International Fascism.” See if you notice any similarities with the way things have been unfolding in America for the last few years:

Yves Guerin-Serac: the Black Ops Grandmaster behind Operation Gladio… wrote the basic training and propaganda manuals which can be fairly described as the Gladio order of battle.”…

Guerin-Serac was a war hero, agent provocateur, assassin, bomber, intelligence agent, Messianic Catholic, and the intellectual grandmaster behind the ‘Strategy of Tension’ essential to the success of Operation Gladio. Guerin-Serac published via Aginter Press the Gladio manual, including Our Political Activity in what can aptly be described as Gladio’s First Commandment:

“Our belief is that the first phase of political activity ought to be to create the conditions favoring the installation of chaos in all of the regime’s structures…In our view the first move we should make is to destroy the structure of the democratic state under the cover of Communist and pro-Soviet activities…Moreover, we have people who have infiltrated these groups.”

Guerin-Serac continues:

“Two forms of terrorism can provoke such a situation [breakdown of the state]: blind terrorism (committing massacres indiscriminately which cause a large number of victims), and selective terrorism (eliminate chosen persons)…

This destruction of the state must be carried out under the cover of ‘communist activities.’ After that, we must intervene at the heart of the military, the juridical power and the church, in order to influence popular opinion, suggest a solution, and clearly demonstrate the weakness of the present legal apparatus. Popular opinion must be polarized in such a way, that we are being presented as the only instrument capable of saving the nation.”

Anarchic random violence was to be the solution to bring about such a state of instability thus allowing for a completely new system, a global authoritarian order. Yves Guerin-Serac, who was an open fascist, would not be the first to use false-flag tactics that were blamed on communists and used to justify more stringent police and military control from the state….” (“Operation Gladio: NATO’s Secret War for International Facism”, The Saker)

Repeat: the first phase of political activity ought to be to create the conditions favoring the installation of chaos in all of the regime’s structures… This destruction of the state must be carried out under the cover of (communist) activities… Popular opinion must be polarized in such a way, that we are being presented as the only instrument capable of saving the nation.”

In other words, the objective of the operation is to completely disrupt all social relations and interaction, cultivate feelings of uncertainty, polarization and terror, find a group that can be scapegoated for the wide societal collapse, and, then, present yourself (elites) as the best choice for restoring order.

Is this what’s going on?

It’s very possible. It could all be part of a Grand Strategy aimed at “wiping the slate clean” in order to “transition away from intergovernmental decision-making” to a system of “multi-stakeholder governance.”

That could explain why there has been such a vicious and sustained attack on our history, culture, traditions, religious beliefs, monuments, heroes, and founders. They want to replace our idealism with feelings of shame, humiliation and guilt. They want to erase our past, our collective values, our heritage, our commitment to personal freedom, and the very idea of America itself. They want to raze everything to the ground and start over. That is their basic Gameplan writ large.

The destruction of the state is being carried out behind the cover of seemingly random events that are spreading chaos, exacerbating political divisions, increasing the incidents of public mayhem, and clearing the way for a violent restructuring of the government.

They can’t build a new world order until the old one is destroyed.

February 23, 2023 Posted by | Civil Liberties, Economics, Malthusian Ideology, Phony Scarcity | , , | 2 Comments

Broadcaster sacks host after external influence probe

RT | February 23, 2023

French broadcaster BFMTV has fired an anchor following a probe into alleged external meddling into his work, AFP reported Thursday, citing an internal company email it had seen.

The host in question, Rachid M’Barki, was found not to have followed due editorial process in multiple news segments aired between 2021 and 2022, BFMTV Marc-Olivier Fogiel reportedly said in the correspondence. The faulty news segments included false information on assorted topics, ranging from Russian “oligarchs” to the situation in the Middle East and Western Sahara.

The anchor was suspended early in January, after the company became aware of the potential misconduct on his part. The affair became public this month, when the Forbidden Stories collective released an investigation into a secretive Israeli contractor group, dubbed ‘Team Jorge,’ which had specialized in assorted malign cyber activities to manipulate the outcomes of elections worldwide. To expose the group, the journalists fancied themselves as prospective clients seeking electoral meddling, while covertly recording hours of footage during meetings with the members of the clandestine contractor unit.

The group, run by Tal Hanan, a 50-year-old former Israeli secret services operative, operated a vast social media bots network it used to affect public opinion in different countries. The team also reportedly used legitimate news outlets to plant the information it needed for its activities, with M’Barki identified among presenters which had been fed the misinformation.

The presenter had previously acknowledged receiving information from shady anonymous sources, but denied a deliberate spread of fake news on his part. Speaking with Politico after the investigation came out, M’Barki acknowledged that he “used information… received from sources” and that “they did not necessarily follow the usual editorial process.”

“They were all real and verified. I do my job… I’m not ruling anything out, maybe I was tricked, I didn’t feel like I was or that I was participating in an operation of I don’t know what or I wouldn’t have done it,” the journalist stated.

February 23, 2023 Posted by | Deception, Fake News, Mainstream Media, Warmongering | , | 1 Comment

Tony Blair launches new push for biometric digital ID for all citizens

By Ken Macon | Reclaim The Net | February 22, 2023

Former UK Prime Minister Tony Blair is again promoting a controversial plan to give every British citizen a . This would entail the utilization of new biometric technology to store a person’s passport, driving license, tax records, qualifications, and their right to work status.

Sir Tony had previously attempted to introduce ID cards during his time as Prime Minister.

Tony Blair and former Conservative lawmaker William Hague have stated that a major transformation of the government with regards to technology is necessary in order to keep up with the ever-changing world.

However, there was backlash from their demands with Sir Jake Berry calling it a “creepy state plan to track you from the cradle to the grave.”

Blair and Hague revealed their plot in an article for The Times, in which they said “politics must change radically because the world is changing radically.

“We are living through a 21st-century technology revolution as huge in its implications as the 19th-century industrial revolution.”

The duo alleged that current politicians were “in danger of conducting a 20th-century fight at the margins of tax and spending policy when the issue is how we harness this new revolution to reimagine the state and public services.”

The duo demand digital IDs for every citizen – they also called for “a national health infrastructure that uses data to improve care and keep costs down, and sovereign AI systems backed by supercomputing capabilities.”

In an interview with BBC Radio 4 Blair highlighted how countries “as small as Estonia and as large as ’ are moving towards digital IDs.

“If you look at the biometric technology that allows you to do digital ID today, it can overcome many of these problems,’ Blair said.

Big Brother Watch condemned Blair for pushing for a digital identity system.

Big Brother Watch director Silkie Carlo said: “Sir Tony and Lord Hague are absolutely right about the need for the UK to take leadership in technological innovation, but this means protecting people’s rights and privacy, not reviving failed proposals for an intrusive mass digital identity system and a database state.”

Carlo added: “A sprawling digital identity system of the type described by Sir Tony and Lord Hague is utterly retrograde and would be one of the biggest assaults on privacy ever seen in the UK. The public has consistently opposed mandatory ID systems and there is absolutely nothing to suggest the public would want or support such a digital ID system now.”

Blair recently called for global organizations such as the World Trade Organization (WTO) and  (WEF) to push national governments to introduce “digital infrastructure” that monitors who has been vaccinated and who hasn’t.

February 23, 2023 Posted by | Civil Liberties, Full Spectrum Dominance | , , , , | 1 Comment

In the flesh: The Oxford anti-Low Traffic Neighbourhood march

By JJ Starky | The Stark Naked Brief | February 21, 2023

Some protests are torrid affairs. Others can prove enlightening. The march last Saturday in the heart of Oxford was the latter.

Attendees rocked up nearly 2 hours before the scheduled meet, poised with their homemade placards, ready to dissent. It was truly an eclectic mix. Tweed jackets juxtaposed grey baggy trackies, edgy high-tops contrasted brown Chelsea boots, dreadlocks neighboured crew cuts, with all unified under one mission – to say no to Oxfordshire County Council’s creeping authoritarianism.

Last year, the Council announced plans to impose Low Traffic Neighbours (LTN) across the city. Councillors justified the £6.5 million schemes by declaring that they will “greatly reduce” motor vehicle traffic in residential streets. They purport to achieve this by two means. First, bollards will be placed to block off certain streets. Second, LTN zones will be designated and monitored by cameras recording license plates, so if residents drive in zones they have not purchased a permit for, they will be fined. Upon that fine being ignored, they would likely be jailed.

Multiple consultations were then held late last year. The response from locals was overwhelming. 65% of them wholly disapproved. Only 7% endorsed the proposals in another consultation. With some notably citing, the schemes would make certain journeys up to 10 times longer. Acclaimed actress Florence Pugh’s father, who owns a shop in a LTN-designated area, revealed the council failed to consult local shop owners like him. He likewise expressed frustration over footfall decreases since lockdowns and how LTN’s were almost guaranteed to worsen the situation.

At 1pm on the dot, the speeches began. Several speakers took the stage but one 12-year-girl stole the show. The anti-Greta, if you will. There she stood, impressively reading out a pre-written speech that progressively exposed the irrationality behind the council’s plans point-by-point. Crowd members clapped intermittently. And then came the punchline, “To Klaus Schwab…”, she paused, “how dare you!”. Everybody loved it. Children in politics should really be a no no. But to witness an anti-woke one actively fighting to preserve her freedom rather than simping for the current political vogue, by God it was refreshing.

Admittedly, we may or may not have popped to the pub to down a quick ale at this point before rejoining. So we missed the start of the march. When we rejoined, we were confused. The crowd had nearly quadrupled in size.

Chants of freedom rang aloud for the better part of the next 2 hours. Plenty of bypassing youths looked perplexed. Some took videos with disapproving smirks. You could almost see them twitching their thumbs in anticipation of posting about the Alex Jones loons they’d just seen. Several cab drivers beeped their horns in support, smiling and waving vigorously as they did. It was an out and out, peaceful success.

Only the next day did we see coverage of Antifa agitators. Apparently a dozen or so turned up but were quickly cordoned off by police and dispersed after a bloke trolled them with a hearty rendition of Frank Sinatra’s “That’s Life”. Then came the barrage of articles from various local and legacy media journalists.

The Oxford Mail tainted marchers by highlighting that a “Neo-Nazi” was in attendance. LBC’s James O’Brien labelled everyone attending “conspiracy theorists and anti-vaxxers”. But one journalist, Dave Vetter, went further and purveyed in what can only be called live gaslighting. According to Vetter, live-tweeting his perspective, it was an “intoxicating mix of far-right conspiracy slogans, antisemitism and really terrible hip-hop”. He concluded “the rally is, at heart, a climate denial protest”.

In reality, while there were some radical deductions espoused, these were minute, the vast majority of people were simply expressing their desire not to be restricted by local government. No signs we saw referred to Jewish people. And the hip-hop was a sheer sight better than what Vetter is probably capable of. Tellingly, Vetter only mentioned the word freedom once in his thread, which is slightly strange, provided it was the most common word featured on placards. Instead, the likes of the Oxford Mail, O’Brien, and Vetter focused on sporadic elements, deploying typical guilt-by-association devices designed to reassure readers that all these crackpots aren’t to be taken seriously.

Vetter then linked a “video explainer” at the end of his thread to show how 15-minute-cities are a “win for everyone”. From the get-go, again, the presenter gaslights. Ominously, we are told a strain of opposition (virus-connotations likely intended) is growing that is fatally misunderstanding these schemes for “open air prisons enforced by a police state from their enclosed zone”. So let’s recap. Oxford Council proposes plans to restrict and regulate traffic in the city. They ignore locals’ obvious rejection. Planned rollouts of the scheme continue with the council investing in cameras to monitor and fine those in breach of the scheme – sounds quite authoritarian to me. Again, there was no mention of infringements on freedom. Nor was there any reference to the clear subversion of local democracy, which is more or less a facade nowadays.

Entirely absent from almost all coverage is the money that Oxfordshire County Council stands to make. According to citizen journalist, Dulwich Clean Air, Southwark council issued 37,006 PCN fines to drivers going through 5 ANPR cameras (same as Oxford intends to use) in Dulwich’s LTN zone in only 65 working days in May 2021. That amounted to £4,810,780, which is £74,012 per day. Oxford has an estimated population of about half that of Southwark. That equates to roughly £37,000 in fines per day and £13,505,000 a year.

No wonder Oxfordshire Council want to join the party…

What the protest really showed, however, is as much as national governments are guilty of a mission creep towards a kind of plastic moral governance, so are local councils. Per Oxfordshire County Council’s cabinet member for travel and development strategy, Duncan Enright’s own words, these schemes are “going to happen definitely” (whether the public like it or not).

In short, we know better. So the herd must follow our moral plans even if they disapprove. It is the same existential issue afflicting government at the national level. Turns out, it has captured government at the local level too. The ends justify the means for these legislators. Until that is reversed at both macro and micro-level, these protests will grow in number.

Dozens upon dozens of councils across the UK, meanwhile, announce similar traffic schemes to dissenting choruses.

February 23, 2023 Posted by | Civil Liberties, Malthusian Ideology, Phony Scarcity | , | 1 Comment