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Essential Knowledge

Sab, 04/02/2017 - 07:01

The traditional way in the West of teaching history is to start with the three phases of history. There is the beginning, the middle and the end. This is based on two assumptions that are unique to the West. One is that history is a process where the past casts a shadow over the present to shape the future. History is a long chain of causation. The other assumption is history works toward some end, as if it is by design. The idea of “progress” rests on this assumption. The world is progressing toward some end point.

For the student of history, the habit has been to start at the beginning and read forward, thinking about how each era led to and shaped the next. The tides of history have carried man to the place he is today, not by chance, but through the great chain of causality. Each new civilization was built on those that came before it. In this way, history is a stack of blocks and the story of man is a tower reaching to the heavens. To know what comes next means knowing every block in the stack and why it is there.

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A better and more accurate way to read history is to think of each people as having their own beginning, middle and end. History is not one single ribbon in time, but thousands of bits and strands that often lead nowhere and have no influence on what comes next, other than to perhaps stand out as an example for modern people. The emphasis here as we get into the essential knowledge of human history is to stick with books and podcasts that avoid theories of history. Instead, the focus will be on the story of the people in question.

For Westerners, the story of history usually begins with the Greeks, but you cannot really understand the Greeks without knowing something about the Persians. Greek civilization and what we have come to know as the West was forged in the time between the Battle of Marathon and the heroic last stand by the Spartans at Marathon. That’s not true, but it is the way we like to imagine it. Still, to understand the Greeks, you need to know something of the Persians. While only lasting 200 years, the Persians are integral to the history of the Greeks and the Jews, which is why Cyrus gets mentioned in the Old Testament.

You could read Herodotus and it is a fun read, but you can also listen to the great Dan Carlin podcast on the Persians. Carlin is a great history podcaster and a great storyteller so it is a fun way to learn a bit about the Persians. An excellent book for the general reader is Persian Fire: The First World Empire and the Battle for the West. The Persians did not exist in a vacuum, so learning about the people they conquered is a good idea, especially for Bible studying Christians. Here’s a book worth reading and here is another one that covers the material.

For those who have come to prefer podcasts, there is this ongoing podcast about the Ancient world that covers just about everything. I’ve listened to some of it and it is pretty good. There’s also the Ancient Warfare Podcast. It a product from the Ancient Warfare Magazine and it is a fun way to get your feet wet with regards to the people and civilizations of the ancient world. Unless you intend to search for the Ark of the Covenant, these history podcasts are a good introduction to the essential knowledge of these people.

The big subject, when it comes to this part of the world, is ancient Egypt and we are spoiled for choice when it comes to books. Unless you have a desire to become an Egyptologist, a good survey book like The Oxford History of Ancient Egypt is a solid choice. A highly readable history is The Rise and Fall of Ancient Egypt, which is why it made it to the best-seller list. Of course, there’s always the podcast route. This one is probably the most popular one at the moment. It’s well done and entertaining.

Finally, the Greeks. The main reason to know about the Persians, Egyptians, Babylonians and so forth is to have a better understanding of the Greeks. No people has cast a longer shadow and it is impossible to be an educated man without knowing about Greek history, culture and society. It is preferable to know Classical Greek. In a better age, Classical Greek was taught in high school, but that is no longer true. If you want to try and learn a bit, there are on-line course like this one and this one to get you started. You will not become fluent, but you can pick up enough to appreciate the grammar.

For the general reader or someone entirely new to the topic, Ancient Greece: From Prehistoric to Hellenistic Times is a great choice. It is one of those books you can read at the beach or at the airport. For something a bit more advanced, a textbook like this one or this one is a good choice. We tend not to think of textbooks as good reading, but modern history texts are aimed at a generation brought up on smartphones so they tend to be a bit more readable. The key is to start with a general, chronological history of the Greeks.

You cannot be an educated man without having read Homer. You can get the Iliad and the Odyssey for close to free as an eBook. The same is true of Aesop’s Fables. Most people remember it from childhood, but in the context of Greek history is recommended reading. Plato’s Republic is also a must read and it can be downloaded free from any number of sources. Of course, you can always find an on-line course on Greek literature if you are the sort who prefers structured learning.

The Greco-Persian wars and the Peloponnesian War are probably the two most important topics in Greek history. You can and should read Thucydides, but Donald Kagan’s treatment of the Peloponnesian War is fantastic and perfect for the general reader. As far as the Greco-Persian wars, reading Herodotus is a must, but you can also read The Landmark Herodotus: The Histories, by Robert Strassler. It is a big book, but it is a big topic and this treatment reads almost like a novel.

If you want to have a little fun while learning a little bit about Thermopylae, the Gates of Fire is a fun read. It’s not history, but it give you some sense of life in ancient Greece. A more serious telling is Thermopylae: The Battle For The West. If you prefer a podcast, then an excellent podcast on ancient Greece is this one that I have been listening to recently. The good thing about podcasts on ancient history is they tend to be done by people with the passion of a fan, rather than historians just making a buck.

Finally, a book that does not quite fit into the history category, but one I enjoyed reading is 1177 B.C.: The Year Civilization Collapsed. It is not exactly a history book, more of an analysis of what happened at the end of the Bronze Age. Within a period of 40-50 years at the end of the Bronze Age almost every significant city in the eastern Mediterranean world was destroyed. The reason for this remains a bit of mystery, but it makes for a good transition to Joseph Tainter’s The Collapse of Complex Societies, a must read.

Reprinted from The Z-Man Blog.

The post Essential Knowledge appeared first on LewRockwell.

Warmongers on Top?

Sab, 04/02/2017 - 07:01

When I was suffering through advanced infantry training in the US Army many, many moons ago, I learned the Trump negotiating system.

Our dreaded first sergeant, Delmar Creech, would terrorize us, inflict push-ups or latrine detail, and then restrict us to barracks over weekends for some minor infraction.

We hated him with a passion. But then one Friday he strode into the barracks and, with a big smile, said ‘you boys have been good. I’m granting you PX privileges!’

A cheer erupted. We were being allowed to go to the base store to buy candy, cigarettes, and magazines. Suddenly, everyone said, `Sarge ain’t such a bad guy after all.’

This is the secret to Donald Trump’s negotiating tactics: a storm of invective and abuse, followed by some minor concessions. `Trump ain’t such a bad guy after all.’

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We just witnessed this technique used on our old ally, Australia, where Trump threw a telephone tantrum over the prospect of a modest number of mainly South Asian Muslim refugees held on Australia’s Devil’s Island entering the US.

This nasty little spat came on the heels of last week’s refusal by Trump to accept Mideast refugees from seven nations, supposedly to keep America safe. However, there has not been a single attack against the US from Iran, Iraq, Libya, Somalia, Syria or Yemen – even though all have been bombed (26,171 times) or had their governments overthrown by the US and its allies. 

President Trump is doing precisely what he promised voters, something very rare in politics. One of the last presidents to do so was Democrat James K. Polk in the mid-1800’s who stormed into office on the promise of conquering northern Mexico, lowering tariffs, and bluffing the British out of Oregon.

Polk accomplished all of his goals, then refused to run for a second term so he would not be compelled to make political compromises. He died in 1849. His legacy was the new American states of California, Texas, New Mexico, Arizona and other western regions.

This writer had hoped that when Trump felt the full weight of office he would make good on his vow to press for a real Palestinian-Israeli peace agreement. Instead,  Trump welcomed Israeli PM Benyamin Netanyahu, packed his cabinet with rabid Muslim-haters, neo-cons, and far right zanies and has just about proclaimed a new crusade against Islam.

Was all this real or a political ploy? We must remember that nearly half of all Republican voters – Trump’s base – describe themselves as practicing born-again Christians. The Christian fundamentalist right played a key role in George Bush’s two victories.  Some 78% of born-again Christians voted for Bush.

These religious right voters come from the Bible Belt South and Midwest, a vast expanse routinely ignored by East and West coast pundits and political operatives.  The Trump campaign was extremely clever in analyzing this political geography and focusing efforts on the evangelical empty spaces between New York and Los Angeles – the same region that brought Prohibition in 1919 and Trump in 2016.

One of the key tenets of Republican theological voters is the hatred of Islam as the ‘new’ Communism and the fear that Islam’s growth is far outpacing Christianity.

Few of these confused Republican core voters have any sense of geography or history.  After the 9/11 attacks, surveys showed that 78% or more were convinced that Iraq’s Saddam Hussein was behind the attacks. This was a glaring example of what expert Kevin Phillips terms `the American Disenlightenment.’

President Trump benefitted from this accrued ignorance in his startling electoral victory. East and West coast media were astounded because they had never attended a Pentecostal Church or listened to the poisonous sermons of ‘Rev’ John Hagee or so-called Christian radio from whose bizarre ravings many Christian fundamentalists receive all their news.

I witnessed the birth of the strange alliance between America’s Christian far right and Israel in the early 1980’s during the Israeli invasion of Lebanon. Two radio stations from the Bible Belt USA rushed in to begin broadcasting their fundamentalist creed to Lebanon and Syria.

We laughed at these Christian broadcasters but the Israelis were smart enough to understand how their new born-again fundamentalist allies could be used as the first step to winning over the America’s Christian far right. The fundamentalists believe that Biblical Israel must be re-created (never mind Syria, Lebanon, and Palestine) before Christ can return.

Armageddon, the ultimate battle between good and evil, would ensue, bringing the destruction of the Earth. Born-agains will zip up to heaven while the rest of us slowly burn in hellfire.

Three decades later, Christian Conservatives are one of America’s leading political forces. President Trump just called for the ban on churches preaching politics and fundraising be lifted.

Let’s hope Trump uses some of his great energy to arm twist Israelis and Palestinians into a decent peace deal.  This, alas, seem unlikely.

The post Warmongers on Top? appeared first on LewRockwell.

When Your Child Dies

Sab, 04/02/2017 - 07:01

It has been a decade since I wrote my son’s obituary. I posted it the next day.

Lew Rockwell posted it the day after I posted it.

Writing it eased the pain. Writers often write to ease the pain. When you are depressed, work. Work is a productive pain-killing drug.

Warning: If you ever get tingling sensations in your heels, and they move up your calves, then thighs, always moving higher, year by year, get to the Mayo Clinic. They will become spasms when they reach your lower back. They will keep moving up until they are inside your skull. Read the obituary for more details.

I did not know at the time I wrote the obituary where the police found his body in his one-room apartment. It was not on the floor or in bed or slumped in a chair. This is rare, as you might imagine. His body was slumped face-down on the counter next to the kitchen sink. They surmised that he had walked over to the sink, suffered a seizure, died instantly, and fell face-down. The horizontal weight of his upper body supported his entire body. It never hit the floor.

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THE HOLE IN YOUR LIFE

When a close relative dies, you must adjust. There had been a relationship. Now it is gone.

Death is irreversible. We know this, but it is driven home when someone close to you dies. The finality is inescapable. There are no loopholes.

We do not normally bury our children. They bury us. So, we regard our relationships with them as permanent for us, though not for them. Then this permanence ends. This creates a hole in our lives. When death comes without warning, we are unprepared for this size of this hole.

It seems as though it will not fill up. This is correct. It never does. But time moves on, and life’s events are like weeds in a field. They fill up our memories. Better put, they clutter up our memories. Life is mostly cluttered amidst unmemorable, undated routines. We recall so little of it.

We move on. We may occasionally think back to the time when the deceased played a role in our lives. That inevitably draws our attention to the hole. It is just as big as it was when it first appeared, but it is concealed by clutter.

As we age, the years pass by faster. One year for a 60-year-old is a much smaller percentage of his life than one year for a five-year-old. The percentage gets smaller as we age.

The size of death’s hole is like that 12-month interval. It is just as big as it ever was, and just as final. But its impact in our lives is less. This is a blessing. It makes it easier to deal with the hole. We deal with it by ignoring it. Anyway, I do. My wife says she remembers him every day. She has a photo of him and his brother as adults on the message board above her desk.

It is said that time heals all wounds. They get less painful. Then they stop hurting. But some wounds leave scars. The death of a child is such a wound. It reminds us of the all the good things that did not develop. In the case of my son, this thought does not bother me. He suffered too much from that unnamed disease. Death was deliverance. No experts knew how to deliver him from that affliction. I do not look back and say: “If we had not done such and such, that affliction might not have come.” I don’t know what it was, let alone what caused it. I do not second-guess myself about that which had no causal explanation when he was alive.

Second-guessing the past is not productive. If we did not see something coming when we were right in front of it, then we were guessing. Most of life involves guessing. We are not responsible for that which we could not see, and which was inherently unimaginable.

Life is mostly cluttered routine. It is difficult to see through the cluttered routine.

A DELAYED GOODBYE

My son knew that I had always liked the music of the Carter family. One year, he gave me the autobiography of Johnny Cash for Christmas. For Christmas 2006, he gave me a biography of the Carter family. I noticed the cover and the topic, but the title did not sink in. I had just started my website, Gary North’s Specific Answers, in 2006. I was busy. I did not read the book at the time.

He died a month later, as far as we know.

About a year after his death, I got it out to read it. Only then did I notice its title.

Will You Miss Me When I’m Gone?”

The post When Your Child Dies appeared first on LewRockwell.

Steve Bannon Loves the 4th Turning

Sab, 04/02/2017 - 07:01

Steve Bannon became obsessed with a dark theory of history predicting the rebirth of America’s institutions every 80 years – and became convinced the US was on the brink of a bigger conflict than the Second World War, a report said Thursday.

Donald Trump‘s chief strategist became fascinated in the early 2000s by The Fourth Turning, a 1997 book in which William Strauss and Neil Howe explain their theory of American history, Time wrote in a profile of Bannon.

The former Goldman Sachs investment banker and Breitbart executive chairman appears on the cover of this week’s magazine, on which he is dubbed ‘the great manipulator’.

At one point, the piece delves into Bannon’s captivation for Strauss and Howe’s book – which led to Bannon’s 2010 movie Generation Zero, about the 2008 financial crisis.

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These cycles, according to the authors, have taken the US from the revolution (1765-1783) to the Civil War (1861-1865) to the Second World War (1939-1945).

Some might place the Second World War at the end of a period of crisis beginning with the Great Depression of 1929, over eighty years ago.

Bannon interviewed Howe while working on Generation Zero, and in the movie depicted the 2008 financial crisis as a point of turning.

Historian David Kaiser previously recounted in Time being interviewed by Bannon for the documentary.

‘Bannon had clearly thought a long time both about the domestic potential and the foreign policy implications of Strauss and Howe,’ Kaiser wrote.

‘More than once during our interview, he pointed out that each of the three preceding crises had involved a great war, and those conflicts had increased in scope from the American Revolution through the Civil War to the Second World War.

‘He expected a new and even bigger war as part of the current crisis, and he did not seem at all fazed by the prospect.’

Read the Whole Article

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History Without PC

Sab, 04/02/2017 - 07:01

I have listened to Dr. Wilson enough times, I could hear his voice as I read this work. He is one of my heroes as he teaches on American History, not what is taught in the established educational (?) spouts normally called “Schools, Colleges, Universities …”

is today, you will gain much understanding from this book. And, you will not get these truths from most other sources since it offers a lot of facts, logical thought, and all with refreshing non PC garbage, as only Clyde Wilson can.

Published by Shotwell Publishing (… a No Nonsense, Unapologetic, Unreconstructed Publishing Company Specializing in Hard-Hitting Southern Books.) I personally plan to purchase each of their works as they become available.

I hope to see their work offered in audio formats soon, I simply request that the one chosen to narrate, be a Southerner, sound like a Southerner, and have a heart full of the Passion of a Southerner. If a Yankee is chosen to read the book, well, then we would have another ….YANKEE PROBLEM… and that just would not be right now, would it?

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Reprinted from Amazon.com.

The post History Without PC appeared first on LewRockwell.

Trump’s Terrifying Problem

Sab, 04/02/2017 - 07:01

Every president inherits something difficult.

Some problems are simply out of the incoming president’s hands.

Obama inherited a financial crisis. Reagan inherited double digit inflation. Kennedy, Nixon, and Ford each inherited the Vietnam War.

For President Trump, it’s debt.

Donald Trump enters the White House with a $19.9 trillion a headache. In percentage terms, that’s 107% of our GDP.

Sure, every president inherits some kind of debt from his predecessor. But none of them had to follow the Borrower-in-Chief, Barack Obama. Obama doubled the federal debt during his tenure in the Oval. He pushed the total debt close to $20 billion – an 88% rise from when he first took the oath of office.

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Here at the Nestmann Intelligence Unit, this figure weighs heavily on our minds. Especially as we watch the Dow fly past the 20,000 mark to its historic high.

The markets are excited by Trump’s promise of tax cuts, slashed regulations, and job growth. But with the debt at a record high, we’re worried that Trump will find himself choked by a lack of funds.

What happens to the market if the president can’t make good on his business policies?

The Market Is Pricing the Second Coming of Ronald Reagan

Reagan’s former budget director, David Stockman, is worried. He says the markets are anticipating a return to Reaganomics. A return to unrestricted competition and low taxes.

But he says, “There’s no reincarnation coming.”

The key difference here is that Reagan had room to move. When he entered the White House, Reagan had to wrestle with only $1 trillion of debt. A mere 30% of the GDP to President Trump’s 107%.

Worse, on March 16, Congress will impose a new debt ceiling. The ceiling is expected to come in at $20.1 trillion. That leaves Donald Trump slammed up against the debt wall. There will be no more room to borrow, putting Trump’s ambitious plans at risk.

Stockman predicts a bloodbath. The debt ceiling will act as a reality check for the markets, he says. That could mean a sharp reversal from these historic highs.

Trump Has Bills to Pay…

The president has ambitious plans for America, but they won’t come cheap.

Chief among them are a trillion-dollar infrastructure program, a border wall with Mexico, and increased defense spending. At the same time, he’ll treat Americans to a sizable tax break. It’s a welcome policy, but it may leave a hole in the country’s piggy bank.

Trump has also pledged to leave Social Security and Medicare untouched, the two biggest drains on the budget outside defense. “I will do everything within my power not to touch Social Security,” he said.

But if Trump is to reconcile his infrastructure spending and tax cuts, he’ll need to find money somewhere.

To make matters worse, the Fed is raising interest rates. As many as three further hikes could be in the pipeline this year. Obama was lucky enough to ride the wave of low rates. Trump will enjoy no such luxury. With higher interest rates comes higher inflation and larger debt repayments.

The Good News…

… is that President Trump has outlined a vision for reduced spending.

He’ll employ a freeze on federal hiring with a view to cutting 20% on staffing costs. A further 10% will disappear on cuts to wasteful departments and programs. Meanwhile, the president’s commitment to job growth should bring tax dollars back into the pot.

Whispers of a $10.5 trillion cut in federal expenditure over the next 10 years are moving through the White House corridors. However, it remains to be seen exactly where this will come from. And whether it will be enough to bring down the deficit.

The big test will be the president’s inaugural budget. It will offer the first clue as to whether he can balance this knife edge.

President Trump Is the King of Debt

On the campaign trail, Donald Trump hailed himself the “King of Debt.” He said, “I’m great with debt… I’ve made a fortune by using debt, and if things don’t work out, I renegotiate the debt.

Well, he’s now got his hands on the biggest debt pile on the planet. And he faces a challenge to keep it in check.

If the US defaults on its repayments, we may witness the greatest recession the world has ever seen.

Of course, a default is unlikely. Instead, we may see the stirring of the printing press starting up again (also known as quantitative easing) as fresh new dollars are used to pay down the credit (reducing your purchasing power with every print run).

Even worse, the Treasury might just “borrow” funds from the Federal Employee Pension Fund to avoid defaulting. If you think that sounds terrifying and unthinkable, consider this: They’ve done it before.

Time to Create a Plan B

Thanks to Obama’s reckless attitude with the nation’s credit, President Trump may be choked by the debt crisis. It could limit his ability to put his ambitious policies to work. And that may cause the markets to sharply reassess their enthusiasm.

Worse, Trump may be forced to take extraordinary measures to keep the debt sustainable. Measures that threaten your nest egg.

While it’s impossible to time the markets or predict the future, it is possible to take control of your wealth. Perhaps it’s time to create a strategy that spreads your risk and reduces your exposure to the US debt problem.

Reprinted with permission from Nestmann.com.

The post Trump’s Terrifying Problem appeared first on LewRockwell.

Another US War of Aggression?

Sab, 04/02/2017 - 07:01

When Gen. Michael Flynn marched into the White House Briefing Room to declare that “we are officially putting Iran on notice,” he drew a red line for President Trump. In tweeting the threat, Trump agreed.

His credibility is now on the line.

And what triggered this virtual ultimatum?

Iran-backed Houthi rebels said Flynn, attacked a Saudi warship and Tehran tested a missile, undermining “security, prosperity, and stability throughout the Middle East,” placing “American lives at risk.”

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But how so?

The Saudis have been bombing the Houthi rebels and ravaging their country, Yemen, for two years. Are the Saudis entitled to immunity from retaliation in wars that they start?

Where is the evidence Iran had a role in the Red Sea attack on the Saudi ship? And why would President Trump make this war his war?

As for the Iranian missile test, a 2015 U.N. resolution “called upon” Iran not to test nuclear-capable missiles. It did not forbid Iran from testing conventional missiles, which Tehran insists this was.

Is the United States making new demands on Iran not written into the nuclear treaty or international law — to provoke a confrontation?

Did Flynn coordinate with our allies about this warning of possible military action against Iran? Is NATO obligated to join any action we might take?

Or are we going to carry out any retaliation alone, as our NATO allies observe, while the Israelis, Gulf Arabs, Saudis and the Beltway War Party, which wishes to be rid of Trump, cheer him on?

Bibi Netanyahu hailed Flynn’s statement, calling Iran’s missile test a flagrant violation of the U.N. resolution and declaring, “Iranian aggression must not go unanswered.” By whom, besides us?

The Saudi king spoke with Trump Sunday. Did he persuade the president to get America more engaged against Iran?

Senate Foreign Relations Committee Chairman Bob Corker is among those delighted with the White House warning:

“No longer will Iran be given a pass for its repeated ballistic missile violations, continued support of terrorism, human rights abuses and other hostile activities that threaten international peace and security.”

The problem with making a threat public — Iran is “on notice” — is that it makes it almost impossible for Iran, or Trump, to back away.

Tehran seems almost obliged to defy it, especially the demand that it cease testing conventional missiles for its own defense.

This U.S. threat will surely strengthen those Iranians opposed to the nuclear deal and who wish to see its architects, President Hassan Rouhani and Foreign Minister Mohammad Javad Zarif, thrown out in this year’s elections.

If Rex Tillerson is not to become a wartime secretary of state like Colin Powell or Dean Rusk, he is going to have to speak to the Iranians, not with defiant declarations, but in a diplomatic dialogue.

Tillerson, of course, is on record as saying the Chinese should be blocked from visiting the half-dozen fortified islets they have built on rocks and reefs in the South China Sea.

A prediction: The Chinese will not be departing from their islands, and the Iranians will defy the U.S. threat against testing their missiles.

Wednesday’s White House statement makes a collision with Iran almost unavoidable, and a war with Iran quite possible.

Why did Trump and Flynn feel the need to do this now?

There is an awful lot already on the foreign policy plate of the new president after only two weeks, as pro-Russian rebels in Ukraine are firing artillery again, and North Korea’s nuclear missile threat, which, unlike Iran’s, is real, has yet to be addressed.

High among the reasons that many supported Trump was his understanding that George W. Bush blundered horribly in launching an unprovoked and unnecessary war in Iraq.

Along with the 15-year war in Afghanistan and our wars in Libya, Syria, and Yemen, our 21st-century U.S. Mideast wars have cost us trillions of dollars and thousands of dead. And they have produced a harvest of hatred of America that was exploited by al-Qaida and ISIS to recruit jihadists to murder and massacre Westerners.

Osama’s bin Laden’s greatest achievement was not to bring down the twin towers and kill 3,000 Americans but to goad America into plunging headlong into the Middle East, a reckless and ruinous adventure that ended her post-Cold War global primacy.

Unlike the other candidates, Trump seemed to recognize this.

It was thought he would disengage us from these wars, not rattle a saber at an Iran that is three times the size of Iraq and has as its primary weapons supplier and partner Vladimir Putin’s Russia.

When Barack Obama drew his red line against Bashar Assad’s use of chemical weapons in Syria’s civil war, and Assad appeared to cross it, Obama discovered that his countrymen wanted no part of the war that his military action might bring on.

President Obama backed down — in humiliation.

Neither the Ayatollah Khamenei nor Trump appears to be in a mood to back away, especially now that the president has made the threat public.

The post Another US War of Aggression? appeared first on LewRockwell.

Hitler’s Mobile Phone

Sab, 04/02/2017 - 07:01

An old rotary phone that’s been tucked away in an English house in the country since 1945 is headed to auction in the United States later this month. Its significance? The antique phone, described by the auction house as a “mobile device of destruction,” once belonged to Adolf Hitler.

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Recovered from the Fuhrerbunker during the last days of World War II, the phone was “arguably the most destructive ‘weapon’ of all time, which sent millions to their deaths around the world,” Alexander Historical Auctions noted in a description.

The phone was gifted to Hitler during the last two years of the war and while it was originally black Bakelite, it was painted red – said to be Hitler’s favorite color – and engraved on the back with his name, an eagle, and a swastika.

British officer Ralph Rayner took the phone, but essentially kept it a secret at first, as British soldiers caught looting could face court martial. Rayner’s son, Ranulf, then inherited the phone when his father died in 1977.

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The post Hitler’s Mobile Phone appeared first on LewRockwell.

That Male-Female Wage Gap

Sab, 04/02/2017 - 07:01

You’ve heard about the “gender wage gap.”

That fable goes like this: since women in the aggregate earn only 79% of what men earn in the aggregate, women “earn 79% of what men earn for doing the same work.”

You get extra points for brain-wave activity if you asked: “Wait, how did ‘for doing the same work’ get added onto that?”

I’ll get to that in a minute.

The automobile manufacturer Audi just released an ad for virtue-signaling purposes to let us all know how outraged they are that women suffer from a 21% pay gap.

Right now the ratio of thumbs down to thumbs up for the ad on YouTube is running at 12 to 1, so not everyone in the world is brain dead.

So is there anything to the “pay gap” claim?

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First of all, the needle on your b.s. meter should be all the way in the red even before investigating the statistics. With profit margins in the single digits in many parts of the economy, what firm could afford to give its male employees such an overwhelming advantage? They’d instantly fire all the men, replace them with women, and wipe the floor with their competition.

The very same people who accuse business of thinking about nothing but profit, in other words, now expect us to believe businesses will throw profit out the window because they hate women just that much.

I’m sure in feminist fantasyland there are people who consider this a reasonable way to think about the economy. But you’re telling me not even one business has figured out the overwhelming advantage it could get by firing all its men?

So maybe there’s more to the question after all.

For instance, the 79% statistic doesn’t even correct for hours worked. So it’s a flat-out lie on those grounds alone.

Oh, proponents of the theory pretend to account for hours worked. Why, we’re comparing full-time workers to full-time workers, they protest.

But not all full-time workers are created equal.

As long as you work at least 35 hours a week, you’re considered full time. So we need to disaggregate the numbers a bit.

For instance, women are 2.5 times more likely than men to work just 35-39 hours per week. Men are almost twice as likely to work more than 40 hours a week, and 2.5 times more likely to work over 60 hours per week.

You think that disparity might have a teensy effect on earnings?

So once we correct for hours worked, the gap is down to 10.7%.

Well, what about that 10.7%?

Here we have to ask: are women and men doing the same work? That’s what’s normally assumed by indignant protesters.

But they’re not. In fact, the Obama White House itself had a 12% pay gap between men and women. How did they explain it away? Why, women and men do different things!

How about that!

Since women often intend to leave the labor force for extended periods of time in order to have children, they do not consider certain high-paying fields where their knowledge would be obsolete after so long an absence.

Instead, they prefer lower-paying jobs with schedules that are more convenient for their family lives.

When we compare never-married women and never-married men, we find (unsurprisingly) virtually no gap. What little gap that remains is accounted for by differentials in education, experience, etc.

So the “gender pay gap” is nothing a thinking person should worry about.

The folks at Audi would have known this already if they’d read my free libertarian eBooks.

The post That Male-Female Wage Gap appeared first on LewRockwell.

Fight Dangerous Free Radicals

Ven, 03/02/2017 - 07:01

You don’t have to look at many health food advertisements to see how many marketing messages focus on antioxidants and free radicals. Marketers depict free radicals as the cause of human suffering, while antioxidants are the ultimate defense and secret to immortality. Although the ad wizards exaggerate the truth, free radicals do, in fact, corrupt molecules like DNA, and antioxidants can help reduce the damage they cause. The mitochondria in our cells are responsible for releasing energy from the molecules in our food, but they also unleash electron-stealing free radicals like reactive oxygen and reactive nitrogen species. Fortunately, antioxidants scavenge free radicals and prevent them from causing further damage.

The effects of long-term, free radical damage (or oxidative damage) lead to the mitochondrial theory of aging. The mitochondrial theory of aging, like the free radical theory of aging, says that free radical stress causes “aging.” But, the mitochondrial theory of aging also asserts that free radicals damage mitochondrial DNA frequently and, over time, the damage accumulates. This regular “wear and tear” on the genetic code impedes the function of the mitochondria. When the mitochondria don’t function normally, the cell doesn’t receive the energy it needs and, ultimately, the operation of the cell as a whole is affected. When this happens in millions upon millions of cells, the organism itself ages and biological function begins to diminish.

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The upside is that you can reduce free radical damage. Let’s explore free radicals, how they affect us, and their relationship with antioxidants.

What Are Free Radicals?

Free radicals are atoms, ions, or molecules that contain an unpaired electron. The unpaired electron makes them unstable and highly reactive. In a process called oxidation, free radicals steal electrons from other molecules—fats, proteins, cell membranes, and even DNA—altering the fundamental structure of the affected molecule. One unbalanced molecule may not sound like a major concern, but oxidation sets off a chain reaction by damaging a cell’s DNA, structure, and ability to function. Over time, oxidative damage accumulates and contributes to aging and a variety of degenerative diseases.[1]

Where Do Free Radicals Come From?

There are many types of free radicals, but when we discuss them in a health capacity, we’re referring to those that contain oxygen in the molecule, known collectively as reactive oxygen species (ROS).

Oxygen is an essential element for life, and every cell in your body requires it for cellular metabolism. During cellular metabolism, cells use oxygen to convert food into a form of energy the body can use, called ATP. Free radicals are a natural byproduct of [2]

Cellular metabolism is not the only source of free radicals. Free radicals generate and are generated by inflammation, stress, illness, and aging.[3] Hazardous environmental sources such as pollution, toxic metals, alcohol, cigarette smoke, radiation, industrial chemicals, and medications expose us to free radicals.[1]

Completely avoiding free radicals is neither possible nor desirable. At low concentrations, free radicals are beneficial to the human body. Your immune system uses them to help defend itself against pathogens.[4]

As in all things, however, proper balance is critical and problems begin when free radicals are wildly out of balance. When free radicals overwhelm your body, it leads to oxidative stress.

What Is Oxidative Stress?

Oxidative stress is the oxidative damage that results from an imbalance between free radicals and your body’s store of antioxidants. According to the free radical theory of aging (FRTA), organisms age because of accumulated free radical damage to cells and DNA. The theory states that cumulative damage to cell components and connective tissue leads to wrinkles, decreased physical capability, increased susceptibility to disease, and death.[5]Though the free radical theory of aging remains controversial, oxidative stress contributes to degenerative conditions such as arthritis, heart disease, hypertension, Alzheimer’s disease, Parkinson’s disease, muscular dystrophy, and more.[1]

The Power of Antioxidants Against Free Radicals

Free radicals forage through your body looking for electrons to steal (or give away) and they aren’t picky. They need pairs of electrons in order to be stable and they frantically seek molecules to achieve this. Free radicals will take (or leave) an electron, whether it’s available or not, including those in fragile DNA molecules, proteins, and fats. Antioxidants stop free radical damage to molecules[6] by accepting or donating an electron to make it stable. Antioxidants are unique in that they remain stable when they donate an electron. Antioxidants sources are often discussed in terms of their free radical scavenging abilities. The “free radical scavenging activity” of antioxidants varies from one to the next.

Read the Whole Article

The post Fight Dangerous Free Radicals appeared first on LewRockwell.

A Program for Right-Wing Populism

Ven, 03/02/2017 - 07:01

This was written in January 1992.

WHAT IS RIGHT-WING POPULISM?

The basic right-wing populist insight is that we live in a statist country and a statist world dominated by a ruling elite, consisting of a coalition of Big Government, Big Business, and various influential special interest groups. More specifically, the old America of individual liberty, private property, and minimal government has been replaced by a coalition of politicians and bureaucrats allied with, and even dominated by, powerful corporate and Old Money financial elites (e.g., the Rockefellers, the Trilateralists); and the New Class of technocrats and intellectuals, including Ivy League academics and media elites, who constitute the opinion-moulding class in society. In short, we are ruled by an updated, twentieth-century coalition of Throne and Altar, except that this Throne is various big business groups, and the Altar is secular, statist intellectuals, although mixed in with the secularists is a judicious infusion of Social Gospel, mainstream Christians. The ruling class in the State has always needed intellectuals to apologize for their rule and to sucker the masses into subservience, i.e., into paying the taxes and going along with State rule. In the old days, in most societies, a form of priestcraft or State Church constituted the opinion-moulders who apologized for that rule. Now, in a more secular age, we have technocrats, “social scientists,” and media intellectuals, who apologize for the State system and staff in the ranks of its bureaucracy.

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Libertarians have often seen the problem plainly, but as strategists for social change they have badly missed the boat. In what we might call “the Hayek model,” they have called for spreading correct ideas, and thereby converting the intellectual elites to liberty, beginning with top philosophers and then slowly trickling on down through the decades to converting journalists and other media opinion-moulders. And of course, ideas are the key, and spreading correct doctrine is a necessary part of any libertarian strategy. It might be said that the process takes too long, but a long-range strategy is important, and contrasts to the tragic futility of official conservatism which is interested only in the lesser-of-two-evils for the current election and therefore loses in the medium, let along the long, run. But the real error is not so much the emphasis on the long run, but on ignoring the fundamental fact that the problem is not just intellectual error. The problem is that the intellectual elites benefit from the current system; in a crucial sense, they are part of the ruling class. The process of Hayekian conversion assumes that everyone, or at least all intellectuals, are interested solely in the truth, and that economic self-interest never gets in the way. Anyone at all acquainted with intellectuals or academics should be disabused of this notion, and fast. Any libertarian strategy must recognize that intellectuals and opinion-moulders are part of the fundamental problem, not just because of error, but because their own self-interest is tied into the ruling system.

Why then did communism implode? Because in the end the system was working so badly that even the nomenklatura got fed up and threw in the towel. The Marxists have correctly pointed out that a social system collapses when the ruling class becomes demoralized and loses its will to power; manifest failure of the communist system brought about that demoralization. But doing nothing, or relying only on educating the elites in correct ideas, will mean that our own statist system will not end until our entire society, like that of the Soviet Union, has been reduced to rubble. Surely, we must not sit still for that. A strategy for liberty must be far more active and aggressive.

Hence the importance, for libertarians or for minimal government conservatives, of having a one-two punch in their armor: not simply of spreading correct ideas, but also of exposing the corrupt ruling elites and how they benefit from the existing system, more specifically how they are ripping us off. Ripping the mask off elites is “negative campaigning” at its finest and most fundamental.

This two-pronged strategy is (a) to build up a cadre of our own libertarians, minimal-government opinion-moulders, based on correct ideas; and (b) to tap the masses directly, to short-circuit the dominant media and intellectual elites, to rouse the masses of people against the elites that are looting them, and confusing them, and oppressing them, both socially and economically. But this strategy must fuse the abstract and the concrete; it must not simply attack elites in the abstract, but must focus specifically on the existing statist system, on those who right now constitute the ruling classes.

Libertarians have long been puzzled about whom, about which groups, to reach out to. The simple answer: everyone, is not enough, because to be relevant politically, we must concentrate strategically on those groups who are most oppressed and who also have the most social leverage.

The reality of the current system is that it constitutes an unholy alliance of “corporate liberal” Big Business and media elites, who, through big government, have privileged and caused to rise up a parasitic Underclass, who, among them all, are looting and oppressing the bulk of the middle and working classes in America. Therefore, the proper strategy of libertarians and paleos is a strategy of “right-wing populism,” that is: to expose and denounce this unholy alliance, and to call for getting this preppie-underclass-liberal media alliance off the backs of the rest of us: the middle and working classes.

A RIGHT-WING POPULIST PROGRAM

A right-wing populist program, then, must concentrate on dismantling the crucial existing areas of State and elite rule, and on liberating the average American from the most flagrant and oppressive features of that rule. In short:

l. Slash Taxes. All taxes, sales, business, property, etc., but especially the most oppressive politically and personally: the income tax. We must work toward repeal of the income tax and abolition of the IRS.

2. Slash Welfare. Get rid of underclass rule by abolishing the welfare system, or, short of abolition, severely cutting and restricting it.

3. Abolish Racial or Group Privileges. Abolish affirmative action, set aside racial quotas, etc., and point out that the root of such quotas is the entire “civil rights” structure, which tramples on the property rights of every American.

4. Take Back the Streets: Crush Criminals. And by this I mean, of course, not “white collar criminals” or “inside traders” but violent street criminals – robbers, muggers, rapists, murderers. Cops must be unleashed, and allowed to administer instant punishment, subject of course to liability when they are in error.

5. Take Back the Streets: Get Rid of the Bums. Again: unleash the cops to clear the streets of bums and vagrants. Where will they go? Who cares? Hopefully, they will disappear, that is, move from the ranks of the petted and cosseted bum class to the ranks of the productive members of society.

6. Abolish the Fed; Attack the Banksters. Money and banking are recondite issues. But the realities can be made vivid: the Fed is an organized cartel of banksters, who are creating inflation, ripping off the public, destroying the savings of the average American. The hundreds of billions of taxpayer handouts to S&L banksters will be chicken-feed compared to the coming collapse of the commercial banks.

7. America First. A key point, and not meant to be seventh in priority. The American economy is not only in recession; it is stagnating. The average family is worse off now than it was two decades ago. Come home America. Stop supporting bums abroad. Stop all foreign aid, which is aid to banksters and their bonds and their export industries. Stop gloabaloney, and let’s solve our problems at home.

8. Defend Family Values. Which means, get the State out of the family, and replace State control with parental control. In the long run, this means ending public schools, and replacing them with private schools. But we must realize that voucher and even tax credit schemes are not, despite Milton Friedman, transitional demands on the path to privatized education; instead, they will make matters worse by fastening government control more totally upon the private schools. Within the sound alternative is decentralization, and back to local, community neighborhood control of the schools.

Further: We must reject once and for all the left-libertarian view that all government-operated resources must be cesspools. We must try, short of ultimate privatization, to operate government facilities in a manner most conducive to a business, or to neighborhood control. But that means: that the public schools must allow prayer, and we must abandon the absurd left-atheist interpretation of the First Amendment that “establishment of religion” means not allowing prayer in public schools, or a creche in a schoolyard or a public square at Christmas. We must return to common sense, and original intent, in constitutional interpretation.

So far: every one of these right-wing populist programs is totally consistent with a hard-core libertarian position. But all real-world politics is coalition politics, and there are other areas where libertarians might well compromise with their paleo or traditionalist or other partners in a populist coalition. For example, on family values, take such vexed problems as pornography, prostitution, or abortion. Here, pro-legalization and pro-choice libertarians should be willing to compromise on a decentralist stance; that is, to end the tyranny of the federal courts, and to leave these problems up to states and better yet, localities and neighborhoods, that is, to “community standards.”

The post A Program for Right-Wing Populism appeared first on LewRockwell.

New Fukushima Trouble

Ven, 03/02/2017 - 07:01

Record high radiation levels that’s lethal even after brief exposure have been detected at a damaged reactor at the Fukushima power plant in Japan. Specialists also found a hole, likely caused by melted nuclear fuel.

Radiation levels of up to 530 Sieverts per hour were detected inside an inactive Reactor 2 at the Fukushima Daiichi nuclear complex damaged during the 2011 earthquake and tsunami catastrophe, Japanese media reported on Thursday citing the plant operator, Tokyo Electric Power Company (TEPCO).

A dose of about 8 Sieverts is considered incurable and fatal.

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A hole of no less than one square meter in size has also been discovered beneath the reactor’s pressure vessel, TEPCO said. According to researchers, the apparent opening in the metal grating of one of three reactors that had melted down in 2011, is believed to be have been caused by melted nuclear fuel that fell through the vessel.

The iron scaffolding has a melting point of 1500 degrees, TEPCO said, explaining that there is a possibility the fuel debris has fallen onto it and burnt the hole. Such fuel debris have been discovered on equipment at the bottom of the pressure vessel just above the hole, it added.

The latest findings were released after a recent camera probe inside the reactor, TEPCO said. Using a remote-controlled camera fitted on a long pipe, scientists managed to get images of hard-to-reach places where residual nuclear material remained. The substance there is so toxic that even specially-made robots designed to probe the underwater depths beneath the power plant have previously crumbled and shut down.

However, TEPCO still plans to launch further more detailed assessments at the damaged nuclear facility with the help of self-propelled robots.

Earlier this week, hopes for a more efficient cleanup at Fukushima were high, as the plant operator announced a portion of nuclear fuel debris responsible for a lot of the lingering contamination from six years ago may have finally been found.

Reprinted from RT News.

The post New Fukushima Trouble appeared first on LewRockwell.

Want a Fabulously Productive Summer Garden?

Ven, 03/02/2017 - 07:01

Hold on to your hat! Spring and it’s warmer cousin, summer, are just around the corner. Yes, even if you’re looking out the window at piles of crystalline, white snow — believe! One day soon, the days will lengthen and your summer garden will become just as real as those freezing temperatures!

Seed companies from companies like Seed Savers, Territorial Seed Company, and Baker Creek Heirloom Seeds have their catalogs at the ready. Be sure to request them now before supplies run low. Here’s a comprehensive list of seed companies to peruse.

Even before the catalogs arrive, though, there are a number of actions you can take right now to get that summer garden ready before the spring thaw.

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1.  Improve your soil, if it needs it.

Marjory Wildcraft of The Grow Network, says that conditioning your soil is one of the first thing any gardener should do. Keep in mind that soil composition can change over time and should be re-evaluated every so often.

Our garden was growing tomatoes non-stop, even throughout the winter, when suddenly everything pretty much died. We learned, later, that our soil had accumulated too much nitrogen and had to back up several steps to make some adjustments. You might need to:

  • Have your soil tested by your local extension office.
  • Mix compost in with the soil you now have.
  • Add amendments, per instructions from extension office or local growers.

This article outlines, even more, mistakes a backyard gardener can make on her way to developing a healthy, productive garden.

2.  Push your composting into high gear!

Make sure everyone in the family knows what can and cannot be added to compost and place “compost catchers” near the kitchen sink and anywhere else food is prepared. As explained in this article, you really can compost through the winter.

Get the kids busy shredding newspaper and old mail (remove plastic windows in envelopes before shredding). Visit a nearby coffee house and ask for their old coffee grinds. Ask neighbors for grass clippings, piles of old leaves, and vegetable peelings. If it’s too cold outside to venture out to a compost pile, keep a rolling compost bin like this one on the patio, just outside the back door, or in an outbuilding. You can always move it when warmer temperatures arrive.

3.  Research what grows best in your area and microclimate.

If you’re not sure what to plant and when visit a farmer’s market and talk to the pros or search on the internet for local gardening blogs.

Out of curiosity, I did a search for “Phoenix garden blog” and came up with 28,900,000 results. OK, most of those didn’t have the information I was looking for, but the way I figure it is that if someone cares enough to write about their gardening efforts, they probably have some pretty good information and tips to share!

Local nurseries (probably not the big box store nurseries) will likely have good advice about what grows best in your climate. Remember that many of us live in micro-climates, and our backyards may have more than one microclimate, which affects what we can grow and when it should be planted and harvested.

4.  Check your watering system.

Replace any missing or damaged valves or hoses. There’s nothing quite like spending some money on seeds and/or seedlings, amassing a good amount of quality compost, and then coming out one day to discover that your plants are nearly dead from an unexpected heat wave.

This happened to us last June, and it was so disappointing. If your garden depends on a watering system, this is an area that can’t be neglected.

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Feds To Control Naturalization

Ven, 03/02/2017 - 07:01

It is one of the more commonly used cliches of the political establishment.

“We are a nation of immigrants.”

Most Americans just buy that bill of goods and never think about what it actually means. After all, they reason, their people came here from somewhere.

This is true, but this is simply reflexive group think of the worst order.

The vast majority of Americans were born here and come from families that go back for generations. The same was true of the founding generation. Many of the men from that greatest generation of Americans–sorry Tom Brokaw–were fourth or fifth generation Americans whose families had settled in the British North American colonies on their own hook.

No government handouts awaited their arrival.

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More importantly, these people, even those who arrived from the British Isles, were different. Most spoke English, but their idioms, dialect, and usage widely differed. So did most of their customs, from marriage to child-rearing to views of liberty and order.

That is still true today. Go to Massachusetts see what kind of reaction you get if you said this: “I’m fixin’ to go to the store and get a buggy. I’ll need it for my sweet tea and grits.”

You’ll be viewed as an alien. And rightly so. You would be.

We can’t be a “nation” because of a “nation,” by definition, is a people with similar language, customs, traditions, religion, etc. Northern and Southern Americans certainly have some things in common, maybe many, but their differences are often night and day. Everyone knows it, they just don’t understand why that is important.

America, both then and today, is a collection of republics wedded together for the “general welfare” of the Union, not a “nation” of people. That only included commerce and defense. All else was to be left to the States.

Which brings me to immigration, the hottest issue in America now. The pink hatted ladies and their “nasty” march were trumped by Trump.

President Trump promised action and immigration and he delivered. The founding generation would have agreed in principle. Just read the debates at the Philadelphia Convention about “naturalization.”

But this is a complex issue that involves the nature of the Union. While the general government certainly can–and should–look seriously at the issue of how to become an American citizen, the States can–and should–look to ratchet up their own “immigration” laws.

You see, immigration was long considered a State issue. Jefferson said as much in the Virginia and Kentucky Resolutions of 1798. A State like Texas could, at least according to the original Constitution, build its own wall and craft its own strict rules on immigration and state citizenship. That includes voting. The Constitution is clear that States determine who can vote as long as the distinction is not made on the basis of race, sex, age over 18, and the requirement of a poll tax. They can prohibit aliens from voting.

On the other hand, if Californians do not think the same way, they could allow all the immigrants they want into their “sanctuary State.” Or they could just secede. That would be the better and more preferable option. As Michael Goodwin of the New York Post wrote yesterday: “I say we take their wine and let them go. If California secedes and its 55 electoral votes come off the board, Dems will never win another American election. On the other hand, Hillary Clinton could become president of the breakaway state and the rest of us would be free of the Clinton stain.” Sounds good to me. But they can keep their wine. They’ll need it.

And it seemed clear at the Philadelphia Convention that States had vast leeway on the issue.

At the same time, the Congress could make it exceedingly difficult to become an American citizen. We should make it tough. This is the legal and preferable course. Trump’s executive orders could simply be reversed by the next man up. As Gouverneur Morris of Pennsylvania said in 1787 (anyone that knows me knows that I am no fan of Morris, but on this matter he is correct), “We should not be polite at the expense of prudence.”

In other words, we should not conflate “naturalization” with “immigration.” That was the ingenious creation of nationalist SCOTUS judges in 1876, almost all of whom were appointed by Lincoln or Grant. Diversity.

The post Feds To Control Naturalization appeared first on LewRockwell.

Former Iron Curtain Countries Will Remain European

Ven, 03/02/2017 - 07:01

Originally appeared at American Renaissance

Americans have something to learn.

White people in the former Warsaw Pact countries still cherish their racial and cultural identities, and their politicians and citizens are trying to keep immigrants out. Even if we in America and Western Europe become extensions of the Third World, the countries behind the Iron Curtain will still be European.

I would like to discuss the most important of these countries: the Russian Federation. Here, people feel no white guilt. Why should they? While American blacks were demanding civil rights and reminding whites of slavery, Soviet citizens were suffering a kind of modern slavery. White privilege did not save the millions who disappeared in Stalin’s labor camps, nor did it help those who starved during the famines that he and his party bosses created. If American blacks or British Muslims had a taste of what Soviet citizens went through in the 1930s and 1940s, they would be glad they were American citizens and British subjects.

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Prisoners at Belbaltlag gulag camp.

Russians are proud to be Russian. Their people have produced some of the greatest literary and intellectual giants in the history of the West, and Russians take their greatness for granted. They are a tough people who stopped the Grande Armée in the 19th century and the Wehrmacht in the 20th—both considered the most fearsome fighting forces of their time. Russians are proud and tough, and like us also face a major demographic and immigration crisis. Unlike us, they recognize that immigrants are a threat.

Immigrants to the Russian Federation come mostly from the former Soviet republics, which have sent an estimated 13 million people to Russia since the collapse of the Soviet Union in 1989. During the Soviet era, the government sent many Russians to live in

Immigrants to the Russian Federation come mostly from the former Soviet republics, which have sent an estimated 13 million people to Russia since the collapse of the Soviet Union in 1989. During the Soviet era, the government sent many Russians to live in outlying republics as a means of cultural and political control. In the early years after the collapse, immigration consisted largely of these ethnic Russians streaming back to the motherland. In 1991-92, for example, 81 percent of immigrants were Russian, but beginning in 1994, their numbers began to decline. By 2007, ethnic Russians represented only 32 percent of immigrants, and perhaps 10 to 13 percent of the rest were from Ukraine. The remainder were almost certainly from former republics such as Uzbekistan, Kyrgyzstan, and Tajikistan. Some of these people look almost white, but they are not Slavs, and many are culturally Asiatic. Now the greatest number of immigrants to Russia come from these Central Asian countries.

As in Yugoslavia after the end of authoritarian rule, long-festering ethnic conflict flared up after the Soviet collapse. In 1944, Stalin had removed Meskhetian Turks from his native republic of Georgia, deporting them to Uzbekistan. In 1989, Uzbek nationalists rioted against this group they saw as interlopers, and many Meskhetian Turks fled for their lives, in many cases to Russia.

Another fighting that broke out in the 1990s after the Soviet collapse sent yet more refugees to Russia. During the Nagorno-Karabakh conflict between Armenia and Azerbaijan, both Armenians and Azeris fled in large numbers to Russia. When Chechnya rebelled against Russian rule, both Slavic and non-Slavic people from Chechnya, Ingushetia, and Dagestan fled to Russia.

The demographic effects of migration are sometimes hard to quantify because of the effects of internal migration. Non-Slavic Russian citizens, such as Chechens, Ingush, Azeris, etc. are moving into Western Russia and are bringing cultural problems. Because these people hold Russian passports, their movements are not counted as immigration. Only 82.4 percent of Russian citizens are actually Slavs, and many non-Slavs seem intent on moving into the ancestral Slavic homelands.

There are now millions of temporary workers and illegal immigrants in Russia, though no one knows the exact number. Figures provided by the Russian Federal Migration Service and Human Rights Watch range from three to 10 million.

The Western media portray Russia in a very negative light, but life in Russia is much better than in Central Asia or in the Caucasus Mountains. In Moscow and other major Russian cities, migrants enjoy a higher standard of living than would be possible in their home countries. Typically, Central Asians work in the short-term labor market as construction workers, restaurant workers, and in small workshops in private homes. As the Russian migrant rights activist Lidiya Grafova put it (yes, even Russia has such people), it is good for business to hire cheap, powerless Tajiks.

The Russian view of immigrants

Russians do not like immigrants from the Caucasus and Central Asia, nor do they care much for their own Muslim citizens. Articles posted on Human Rights Watch and the liberal, Moscow-based SOVA Center for Information and Analysis suggest that Russians frequently attack immigrants. However, it is clear from the conversation with Russians and from local news stories that immigrants victimize Russians just as Mexicans and blacks victimize whites in America. According to Moscow’s commissioner of police, Vladimir Kolokoltsev, migrants are responsible for 70 percent of the crime in that city, and the crime rate keeps growing. He noted that Central Asians are especially prone to rape, and that rape had increased 79 percent from 2013 to 2014. Attacks and robberies by Central Asians are a staple of conversation in big cities.

Immigrants to the Russian Federation come mostly from the former Soviet republics, which have sent an estimated 13 million people to Russia since the collapse of the Soviet Union in 1989. During the Soviet era, the government sent many Russians to live in outlying republics as a means of cultural and political control. In the early years after the collapse, immigration consisted largely of these ethnic Russians streaming back to the motherland. In 1991-92, for example, 81 percent of immigrants were Russian, but beginning in 1994, their numbers began to decline. By 2007, ethnic Russians represented only 32 percent of immigrants, and perhaps 10 to 13 percent of the rest were from Ukraine. The remainder were almost certainly from former republics such as Uzbekistan, Kyrgyzstan, and Tajikistan. Some of these people look almost white, but they are not Slavs, and many are culturally Asiatic. Now the greatest number of immigrants to Russia come from these Central Asian countries.

As in Yugoslavia after the end of authoritarian rule, long-festering ethnic conflict flared up after the Soviet collapse. In 1944, Stalin had removed Meskhetian Turks from his native republic of Georgia, deporting them to Uzbekistan. In 1989, Uzbek nationalists rioted against this group they saw as interlopers, and many Meskhetian Turks fled for their lives, in many cases to Russia.

Another fighting that broke out in the 1990s after the Soviet collapse sent yet more refugees to Russia. During the Nagorno-Karabakh conflict between Armenia and Azerbaijan, both Armenians and Azeris fled in large numbers to Russia. When Chechnya rebelled against Russian rule, both Slavic and non-Slavic people from Chechnya, Ingushetia, and Dagestan fled to Russia.

The demographic effects of migration are sometimes hard to quantify because of the effects of internal migration. Non-Slavic Russian citizens, such as Chechens, Ingush, Azeris, etc. are moving into Western Russia and are bringing cultural problems. Because these people hold Russian passports, their movements are not counted as immigration. Only 82.4 percent of Russian citizens are actually Slavs, and many non-Slavs seem intent on moving into the ancestral Slavic homelands.

There are now millions of temporary workers and illegal immigrants in Russia, though no one knows the exact number. Figures provided by the Russian Federal Migration Service and Human Rights Watch range from three to 10 million.

The Western media portray Russia in a very negative light, but life in Russia is much better than in Central Asia or in the Caucasus Mountains. In Moscow and other major Russian cities, migrants enjoy a higher standard of living than would be possible in their home countries. Typically, Central Asians work in the short-term labor market as construction workers, restaurant workers, and in small workshops in private homes. As the Russian migrant rights activist Lidiya Grafova put it (yes, even Russia has such people), it is good for business to hire cheap, powerless Tajiks.

The Russian view of immigrants

Russians do not like immigrants from the Caucasus and Central Asia, nor do they care much for their own Muslim citizens. Articles posted on Human Rights Watch and the liberal, Moscow-based SOVA Center for Information and Analysis suggest that Russians frequently attack immigrants. However, it is clear from the conversation with Russians and from local news stories that immigrants victimize Russians just as Mexicans and blacks victimize whites in America. According to Moscow’s commissioner of police, Vladimir Kolokoltsev, migrants are responsible for 70 percent of the crime in that city, and the crime rate keeps growing. He noted that Central Asians are especially prone to rape, and that rape had increased 79 percent from 2013 to 2014. Attacks and robberies by Central Asians are a staple of conversation in big cities.

Russians especially dislike Chechens. During the Chechen wars of the 1990s and 2000s, the Western media portrayed Chechens as the good guys fighting for independence. Chechens, with help from Islamic insurgents from the Middle East, terrorized the local civilians, used women and children as human shields, kidnapped and tortured civilians, and killed Russian prisoners-of-war.

Chechnya has also gone through a kind of ethnic cleansing. In 1989, the census counted 269,130 Russians and 11,884 Ukrainians in Chechnya, together making up 25.9 percent of the population. As of 2010, virtually all of those people were gone—either dead or driven away by Chechen death squads and Arab helpers—and Russians and Ukrainians now make up barely 3 percent of the population.

In addition to Central Asian and Caucasian immigration, there are rumors that Siberia is turning Chinese. Much of this information is unreliable or speculative, but if even a fraction of what is said about Chinese moving into Siberia is true, the Russian Federation faces serious, long-term problems in the East. Estimates of the number of Chinese living in Siberia vary, ranging from Russian figures of 35,000 up to Taiwanese claims of one million. In any case, China is a lot closer to Siberia than European Russia is, meaning that China can more easily project force into a region that is rich in coal, iron, manganese, lumber, and petroleum. If China has, say, a few hundred thousand citizens in Siberia, that constitutes a fifth column in a region with few Russians. If China’s governing elite needs an outside enemy to distract the people’s attention from problems at home, a defenseless and rich Siberia would be a good place to start a conflict.

Russia and China now act as though they are great allies, but they are united only by the fact that they hate the United States. An alliance based on mutual hatred of a third party is a weak one that can easily fall apart. The fact that China is still smarting from a long period of foreign colonialism, in which Russia exploited the Chinese just as much as the British or the Japanese, makes the Chinese a very dangerous partner for the Russians.

How Russians deal with immigrants

Because of the migrant waves of the last decade, the Chechen wars, and rumors of the Chinese influx into Siberia, Russians insist that the government take action. In 2011, Vladimir Putin banned foreign laborers from working as traders in kiosks and markets, and those who break this law can be deported. Since 2013, 513,000 foreigners have been deported by Russian courts, and 1.7 million have been banned from re-entering the country. A deportation hearing takes between three and five minutes, with the judge ruling against the defendant 70 percent of the time. After the judge issues his ruling the violator has no right of appeal and is quickly expelled.

Russia uses deportation and immigration as a political weapon. In September 2006, Georgia arrested four Russian officers for espionage. The Kremlin took great offense and claimed the officers were not spies. Russia recalled its ambassador and then cut all rail, road, and sea links to Georgia and stopped issuing visas to Georgian citizens. This was followed by several high-profile raids on Georgian businesses and places where Georgians congregate. In two months 2,380 Georgians were deported and another 2,000 returned on their own. The Russians officers arrested by Georgia were home in just a few days. There are lessons here for the United States.

Russians are still not satisfied with government action against immigrants. This is not surprising, given the corruption and inefficiency of Russian government institutions. Russians are therefore starting to take matters into their own hands.

On two different occasions in 2010, groups of Chechen men attacked and killed Russian citizens. In both cases, the killers were initially let off, amid suspicions that Chechens had bribed the police (a year later, one of the killers was eventually convicted). Russians were furious over the killings, and on December 11th there were protests across the country. The largest was in Moscow, where as many as 50,000 people may have taken part. The protest soon turned into a riot and Russians began attacking immigrants, killing 24 and injuring many more.

In 2013, there were further riots in Biryulyovo, just south of Moscow, after an Azeri man stabbed a Russian to death. Rioters shouted “White Power” and “Russia for Russians.” Some ransacked a wholesale vegetable market looking for immigrants to attack.

When the police do not do a good enough job of enforcing immigration law, Russians enforce it themselves. In April 2016, activists from the National Conservative Movement organized a project called “We Are Moscow,” in which they checked the documents of immigrant food sellers and turned violators over to the police. Similar raids on illegal food sellers have been carried out in St. Petersburg. In August, activists joined police in a sweep of homes of illegal immigrants in St. Petersburg, dragging them out into the streets and arresting them.

Russians have long memories of invaders. They suffered under the Mongolian Golden Horde and later at the hands of the Poles after the death of Ivan IV. They remember the French and the German invasions, and in today’s Central Asian immigrants they see the modern equivalent of the Golden Horde. Russians still have pride in their nation and people and have a government that is at least moderately responsive to their desires. Even if the United States loses its European character, Russians are determined to remain masters in their own home.

Reprinted from Russia Insider.

The post Former Iron Curtain Countries Will Remain European appeared first on LewRockwell.

Our Bodies, Our Lives, Our Right To Imbibe

Ven, 03/02/2017 - 07:01

What a genocidal racist Donald Trump is! Last week, as proof of his desire to rid the world of nonwhites, he resuscitated the so-called Mexico City Policy, which withholds U.S. funding from international NGOs that perform or promote abortions. And the same leftists who’ve accused Trump of being a genocidal white supremacist are now accusing him of forcing women of color in Third World countries to have more babies. Just let that sink in for a moment…leftists call Trump a white supremacist who hates Third World nonwhites, then they accuse him of upping the population of Third World nonwhites by taking away their “birth control.”

No one ever said leftists make sense.

Having lost the Great Meme War of 2016 (a.k.a. the presidential election), lefties decided to use Trump’s Mexico City Policy directive as a base from which to launch a volley of hip, edgy, progressive, and oh-so-clever memes. Because you see, when Trump signed the order, he was surrounded by (drumroll), men! Men deciding the reproductive fate of women! And while many a fine meme was fired off, the prize must surely go to The Guardian’s social and new formats editor, Martin Belam. The doughty young Belam took one look at the photo of Trump signing the “eradicate nonwhites by making more of them” order and, mustering all of the intellectual prowess that is expected from a social and new formats editor, brought forth the Holy Tweet, the one that shall forever define this critical moment in history:

Why are the most advertised Gold and Silver coins NOT the best way to invest?

As long as you live you’ll never see a photograph of 7 women signing legislation about what men can do with their reproductive organs.

I’ll give you a moment to allow your goose bumps to settle.

Within just a few days, the tweet had garnered over 343,000 “likes” and 266,000 retweets, and it was featured in The New York Times and dozens of other high-profile liberal papers. In this time of crisis, Martin Belam turned out to be the hero Gotham both needs and deserves.

Except…while, agreed, there is not to my knowledge a photo of seven women using the power of the law to take away the reproductive rights of men, you know what does exist in a huge quantities? Photos of American women lining up to use the power of the law to regulate what men are allowed to drink. Now, I can understand if Belam, a Brit, is a little hazy on American history. So he might not know that the criminalization of alcohol was pushed by women as a punitive measure against men. It’s considered the first successful exercise of women’s political power in this country. Yes, the first thing American women did when they finally began to get political influence was a lobby to take rights away from men. So excuse me if I’m not terribly impressed by Belam’s holier-than-thou “you’ll never see women do this” horseshit. Women have done worse, and right out of the gate. And here, Mr. Belam, are some pics to prove it (and here and here and here and here and here)…photo after photo of seven (or more) women lined up to push for legislation to tell men what they can and can’t put in their bodies.

Read the Whole Article

The post Our Bodies, Our Lives, Our Right To Imbibe appeared first on LewRockwell.

The Anti-Vaccine Underground

Ven, 03/02/2017 - 07:01

By Dr. Mercola

In the wake of Robert F. Kennedy Jr. telling reporters that President Trump asked him to chair a commission on vaccine safety and scientific integrity, the media is angling to shame and ridicule vaccine safety and informed consent proponents, be they physicians, scientists or parents with the ability to read and think for themselves.

Although Kennedy’s appointment has not been confirmed yet by the Trump administration, The Atlantic has gone so far as to suggest that a “shadow network of anti-vax doctors” is being emboldened by questions and concerns the new president has voiced about vaccine safety.1

Like Kennedy and many other critics of vaccine science and policy, President Trump has been outspoken about his suspicions that vaccines and vaccine policies may not be nearly as safe as they’re portrayed, and that the science is far from settled.

Why are the most advertised Gold and Silver coins NOT the best way to invest?

Meanwhile, Kennedy recently co-wrote an article in which he released documents revealing that officials at the Food and Drug Administration (FDA) and Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) “knew that infant vaccines were exposing American children to mercury far in excess of all federal safety guidelines since 1999.”2

Recent reports also reveal that medical treatment guidelines are frequently influenced by drug industry ties,3 and scientific “citation cartels” are gaming the system by repeatedly citing each other’s work,4 thereby making their studies appear more noteworthy and establishing what amounts to a false base of research that becomes difficult to overturn by independent researchers.

In all, there can be little doubt that the drug industry is getting anxious and this is why the heat is being turned up against anyone daring to question the status quo on vaccines.

Clearly, having an open discussion about vaccine safety means opening the door to doubt, and this is something the drug industry simply cannot afford. Meanwhile, avoiding the discussion is something parents, and the health care system as a whole, can no longer afford.

Emboldening ‘Anti-Vaccine Shadow Network?’

Not surprisingly, The Atlantic and other media outlets have published diatribes attacking President Trump and his staff for meeting with not only Kennedy, but also Andrew Wakefield, a British gastroenterologist.

In 1998 Wakefield and 12 colleagues published a case series paper in The Lancet, reporting that parents of 9 of 12 children they’d seen for chronic gastrointestinal symptoms told them that their children’s symptoms had begun soon after getting the measles-mumps-rubella (MMR) vaccine.

A case series paper is different from a control study in that it simply describes experiences of a single patient or group of patients with a similar diagnosis. As Wakefield points out in his book, “Callous Disregard,” the purpose of a case series paper is to “generate new hypotheses.”

It is not supposed to suggest or investigate possible causality — and Wakefield’s paper did not make any causal claims. Rather, he and his colleagues concluded:5

“We have identified a chronic enterocolitis in children that may be related to neuropsychiatric dysfunction. In most cases, onset of symptoms was after measles, mumps, and rubella immun[iz]ation. Further investigations are needed to examine this syndrome and its possible relation to this vaccine.

The world didn’t read it that way, however, and the paper was retracted after generating massive international controversy and denials by public health officials and doctors giving vaccines to children.

According to Science Magazine, Trump met with Wakefield and three other vaccine safety activists in August, 2016:6

“Trump chatted with a group of donors that included four antivaccine activists for 45 minutes, according to accounts of the meeting, and promised to watch “Vaxxed,” an antivaccine documentary produced by Wakefield …

Trump also expressed an interest in holding future meetings with the activists, according to participants.”

Such meetings and discussions are being widely criticized as completely unnecessary and evidence of ignorance and anti-science heresy by anyone involved, on par with believing that the Earth is flat. As noted by The Atlantic:7

“… [M]ost mainstream doctors say the vaccine question is beyond settled: Vaccines are some of the safest and most important preventive-health measures around. There is no evidence they cause autism or any other health problem …

What’s more, unvaccinated people don’t just threaten their own health. Outbreaks are more likely to occur during dips in the percentage of a population that’s immune … A high vaccine uptake rate protects the vaccinated and unvaccinated alike.”

There’s No Such Thing as Vaccine-Induced Herd Immunity

The Atlantic goes on to discuss the importance of herd immunity, noting that “not one child under the age of 1 died from the chicken pox between 2004 and 2007, even though the chicken pox vaccine is not given to children that young. They simply benefited from the so-called “herd immunity” of older kids who were vaccinated.”

What the writer, Olga Khazan, fails to address is the fact that herd immunity doesn’t work the same way for immunizations as it does for naturally-acquired immunity resulting from exposure to, and recovery from, illness.

To understand the difference between natural immunity versus vaccine-induced immunity, please see the video below.

Khazan also makes no effort to explain how the majority of outbreaks occur in areas that are thought to HAVE herd immunity status already, i.e., where the majority of people are fully vaccinated and “should” therefore protect the entire community from infection and transmission of infection.

Download Interview Transcript

Documents Reveal Government Betrayal

In his article, Kennedy claims that documentation8 obtained via FOIA proves the FDA and CDC knew childhood vaccines were overexposing children to mercury, which is a well-known potent neurotoxin.

Part of the FDA Modernization Act, passed by Congress in 1997, required the FDA to compile a list of pharmaceutical products that contain mercury.

More than 30 FDA licensed inactivated vaccines containing the mercury-based preservative, thimerosal, ended up on this list and included DPT/DTaP, HIB and hepatitis vaccines routinely given to babies between day of birth and 18 months old.

The FDA was also charged with conducting a quantitative and qualitative analysis of the mercury compounds on the list. This responsibility fell on the FDA’s Center for Biologics Evaluation and Research (CBER).

Prior to this, no one had ever added up the cumulative mercury exposure resulting from thimerosal-containing infant vaccines. According to Kennedy:9

“When the agency finally performed that basic calculation, the regulators realized that a [6]-month-old infant who received thimerosal-preserved vaccines following the recommended CDC vaccine schedule would have received a jaw dropping 187.5 micrograms of mercury.

Instead of immediately ordering the removal of thimerosal, FDA officials circled the wagons treating the public health emergency as a public relations problem. Peter Patriarca, then director of the FDA Division of Viral Products, warned his fellow bureaucrats that hasty removal of thimerosal from vaccines would:

‘… raise questions about FDA being ‘asleep at the switch’ for decades by allowing a potentially hazardous compound to remain in many childhood vaccines, and not forcing manufacturers to exclude it from new products.

It will also raise questions about various advisory bodies regarding aggressive recommendations for use. We must keep in mind that the dose of ethylmercury was not generated by “rocket science.”

Conversion of the percentage thimerosal to actual micrograms of mercury involves ninth grade algebra. What took the FDA so long to do the calculations? Why didn’t CDC and the advisory bodies do these calculations when they rapidly expanded the childhood immunization schedule?’

Toxicology Models Confirm Mercury Overexposure

Dr. Barry Rumack was one of the consultants hired by the FDA to delve deeper into the cumulative mercury exposure problem from vaccines given to babies in the first few years of life. In 1999, Rumack presented a model of the mercury blood-and-body burden associated with childhood vaccines, showing that:

“… [T]himerosal-containing vaccines was dosing American children with mercury levels far exceeding all three federal safety guidelines established by the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA), FDA and Agency for Toxic Substances and Disease Registry (ATSDR),” Kennedy writes.

“There was no point in time from birth to approximately 16-18 months of age that infants were below the EPA guidelines for allowable mercury exposure. In fact, according to the models, blood-and-body burden levels of mercury peaked at [6] months of age at a shockingly high level of 120ng/liter. To put this in perspective, the CDC classifies mercury poisoning as blood levels of mercury greater than 10 ng/L.”

With the certain knowledge that infants were being exposed to unacceptably high mercury burdens through vaccines, what the FDA did next is unforgivable.

The agency that is supposed to protect the public from unsafe pharmaceutical products concealed these alarming findings about “bolus” (large amount) mercury exposures to infants receiving multiple thimerosal-containing vaccines simultaneously by using a statistical trick in which they simply averaged the mercury exposure over a period of six months.

In reality, the bolus mercury exposures via multiple vaccines given on a single day occurred at four specific times during the first year of a child’s life: at birth, and at 2, 4 and 6 months of age. By averaging the exposures over the full six months, the spikes in mercury on the four days of vaccination disappeared. According to Kennedy:

“An analogy would be to compare taking two Tylenol tablets a day for a month to taking 60 Tylenol tablets in one day; the first exposure is acceptable, while the other is lethal.”

Even With Deception, Mercury Burden Exceeded EPA Guidelines

Using this statistical trickery, mercury levels from childhood vaccinations ended up being lower than FDA and ATSDR guidelines, leading the Public Health Service and the American Academy of Pediatrics to report that:

“There is a significant safety margin incorporated into all the acceptable mercury exposure limits. Furthermore, there are no data or evidence of any harm caused by the level of exposure that some children may have encountered in following the existing immunization schedule. Infants and children who have received thimerosal-containing vaccines do not need to be tested for mercury exposure.”

It would seem the last sentence was added as a protective buffer to prevent people from actually conducting further testing of actual mercury levels in children following repeated injections with mercury-containing vaccines in the first few years of life.

Remarkably, even with this statistical trick, “The levels were still above EPA guidelines which were the most stringent of the three,” Kennedy writes,10 adding that “Numerous toxicologists have reported that the FDA’s calculation, averaging these high bolus dose exposures, was not appropriate.” Moreover, it appears the FDA may have misguided the pediatrician, Dr. Leslie Ball, assigned to oversee the public reporting of the ATSDR results.

According to Kennedy, Ball was unfamiliar with toxicology and, when confronted about the statistical manipulation, she replied that she was basically just following orders, saying, “That is what I was told to do.” Email correspondence from 1999 shows that even Ball herself questioned the rationale behind averaging the exposures. In a July, 1999 email to Norman Baylor, Ph.D., director of the Office of Vaccines Research Review, marked “confidential,” Ball asked:11

“Has the application of these calculations as exposure guidelines received the sign off by toxicologists? In prior discussions, the toxicologists seemed reluctant to state any Hg (mercury) level was ‘safe.'”

CDC Vaccine Patents Create Serious Conflicts of Interest

Kennedy has also reported that the CDC owns more than 20 different vaccine patents and sells $4.1 billion in vaccines each year, noting that those patents create a significant undisclosed conflict of interest when it comes to the agency’s involvement in vaccine safety.12

Mark Blaxill, who specializes in intellectual property law, in 2010 wrote about the fact that the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services (DHHS), through the National Institutes of Health (NIH), holds patent rights to the HPV vaccines Gardasil and Cervarix, and receives a percentage of the profits from the administration of these vaccines on a global scale.13

In a recently released report, Ginger Taylor, M.S., director of the Maine Coalition for Vaccine Choice, lists the human vaccine-related patents held by the CDC, which currently total 27, plus another five patents for veterinary vaccines.14 (For links to the actual patents, please see the reference hyperlink to the original report.)

“Does this seem like a public health agency making “independent” vaccine recommendations, or a private company with an impressive portfolio to which one might look for investment opportunities?” she writes.15 Yet, “Nowhere on the CDC’s website can I find the disclosure that the agency is a profit partner with the vaccine makers for whom it is supposed to be providing safety oversight.

Kennedy is in very safe territory by reporting that the CDC has over 20 patents that create vast, undisclosed conflicts of interests in vaccine safety. He is understating the problem by more than half … The vaccine business is currently a $30 billion per year industry … the World Health Organization … project[s] that it will become a $100 billion per year industry by 2025.

Thus, it is evident that the CDC and their business partners need the public to not only be [OK] with the 69 doses of recommended childhood vaccines, but to begin to adhere to the additional 100-plus doses of vaccines recommended by the new adult schedule, and to be ready to inject their families with the additional 271 vaccines in the development pipeline.

That profit boom can’t happen if the corruption in the industry, and the vast, unassessed damage that it has done to the health of children (and now adults) is laid open for all to finally see.

The $30 billion per year industry will become a sub $10 billion per year industry, with a cap on how much it can make. Because there is a cap on how much the human body can process. We must continue to press the Trump administration for comprehensive vaccine safety review and reform, including the universal right to forgo any and all vaccines without coercion.”

Pharma and CDC Fund Medical Trade and Front Groups to Undermine Vaccine Exemptions

Back in 2008, veteran CBS reporter Sharyl Attkisson asked the question in her investigative report, “How Independent Are Vaccine Defenders?”  She found extensive financial ties between vaccine manufacturers and the American Academy of Pediatrics (AAP), Every Child by Two (ECBT) and Merck vaccine developer Paul Offit.16 The AAP, ECBT and Offit all lobby for elimination of vaccine exemptions for religious, conscientious or philosophical beliefs.

The CDC is also a primary funding source for the National Association of County and City Health Officials (NACCHO),17 an organization whose mission “is to be a leader, partner, catalyst and voice for local health departments.” While its name and mission statement would make you think it’s a member-funded organization, it actually operates primarily on government grants, and the CDC is a primary source. Seven of 11 funding priorities for NACCHO programs also come from the CDC.

In July, 2011, NACCHO issued a policy statement urging state legislators to remove vaccine exemptions for religious, conscientious and philosophical beliefs.18 During the 2013 fight in the Oregon state legislature to eliminate the religious belief vaccine exemption (S.B. 132), NACCHO heavily lobbied for the bill and did it again in 2015 with another bill to eliminate all but medical vaccine exemptions granted by a doctor (SB442).

In fact, NACCHO was portrayed as a primary supporter of the bill,19 and also has put its weight behind eliminating personal belief vaccine exemptions in other states.

Moreover, NACCHO policies not only favor mandatory use of vaccines from cradle to grave, but also support the creation of national electronic registries of the vaccination status of all citizens, including adults. It’s worth noting that in addition to the 69 doses of vaccines on the childhood vaccination schedule, the CDC recommends no less than 72 vaccinations between the ages of 19 and 65 for adults.

It would appear as though NACHHO is little more than a front group for the CDC, and through use of federal tax dollars, the CDC is actively undermining vaccine exemptions and civil liberties, including freedom of thought, conscience and religious belief. Could one reason be because the CDC is an agency that is financially profiting from promoting mandatory vaccination policies and laws?

Again, in reality, the CDC is hardly an impartial agency, and it does not appear to have safety at the core of its operation when it comes to vaccines. Rather it seems to be an integral part of the vaccine industry machine.

Another front group for the vaccine industry — and the CDC — is Voices for Vaccines, which “advocates for on-time vaccination and the reduction of vaccine-preventable disease.” Its administrators are portrayed as two concerned mothers, who founded the blog Moms Who Vax. However, Voices for Vaccines is actually an “administrative project” of the Task Force for Global Health, the third largest charity in the U.S., which has deep ties to CDC and pharmaceutical industry funding.

A 2013 article by News from Underground explained that the Scientific Advisory Board of Voices for Vaccines includes Merck vaccine developers and mandatory vaccination proponents Paul Offit and Stanley Plotkin; former CDC immunization director Alan Hinman, who is an Emory University professor and heads the Center for Vaccine Equity at the Task Force for Global Health; Vanderbilt professor William Schaffner; and director of the Immunization Action Coalition, Deborah Wexler. The Immunization Action Coalition is funded by pharmaceutical companies through the CDC Foundation.20

In 2014, the online blog VacTruth also detailed the many connections between Voices for Vaccines, the Task Force for Global Health, Emory University, the CDC, vaccine makers and other pro-vaccine organizations and promoters, including Dr. Paul Offit.21

The Atlantic may want you to think there’s a shadow network of anti-vaccine doctors out there, determined to undermine the health of the world. But it’s ironic, considering that, in reality, there is a vast, undisclosed, yet well-documented pharma-driven network using every propaganda tactic in the book to squash freedom of thought and speech about vaccination — all in the name of protecting profits.

Media Conveniently Ignores Conflicts of Interest When It Serves

Not surprisingly, corporate media pundits are all too willing to point out how many minutes President Trump might have spent face-to-face with Andrew Wakefield, a physician they did everything in their power to discredit, and the influence he might have on the president. However, they rarely, if ever, talk about the extraordinary conflicts of interest of another physician, Paul Offit, who is one of the most prominent vaccine propagandists typically cited by the media whenever vaccine safety questions arise.

As noted by Taylor, Offit has asserted that “holding vaccine patents, being funded by Merck and having Merck buy and distribute, to physicians, his book extolling the virtues of vaccines, does not compromise his objectivity as a member of the committee that determines what is and is not sound vaccine practice.”22 In one instance, Offit said:

“I am a co-holder of a patent for a (rotavirus) vaccine. If this vaccine were to become a routinely recommended vaccine, I would make money off of that. When I review safety data, am I biased? That answer is really easy: absolutely not.”

Ironically, the corporate media are now alleging that Kennedy — who has been outspoken about the toxicity of mercury in vaccines and conflicts of interest within the vaccination system for the last decade — is so tremendously biased that he could not possibly contribute anything worthwhile to the discussion, while Offit, who has made a small fortune off his promotion of mandatory vaccine use, is presented as the non-conflicted, objective and most respected authority in the vaccine field.

How does that work? Offit’s proclamations of impartiality are ludicrous in the extreme and so are media reports claiming anyone but doctors like Offit is too biased to lead an investigation on vaccine safety.

Funding Colors Patient Recommendations

I’ve written about how industry money can taint recommendations by individuals and health organizations alike on many occasions, and now yet another study has confirmed the power and influence of funding. According to Susannah Rose, a social worker and scientific director of research for the Cleveland Clinic’s office of patient experience in Ohio, who led the study:

“Relationships with industry might bias advice, and I don’t think anyone is immune to that. If they’re getting funding and advocating for certain medications, there’s a potential for undue risk of influence.”23

Her study found that more than 67 percent of 245 patient advocacy groups received industry funding in the past year, and evidence suggests the source of funding played a role in recommendations made by such organizations.

Adverse Events Vastly Underreported

In a best-case scenario, we would have accurate information about vaccine side effects. Unfortunately, we do not, and this has seriously undermined efforts to push for greater vaccine safety. In a recent paper published in PLOS Medicine, Dr. Gordon Schiff discusses the need for better prescription drug adverse event reporting. While he does not single out vaccine reactions, there’s cause to believe vaccine reactions are even more underreported than other drug reactions.

“While not a pediatrician, as a primary care physician and patient safety researcher I have spent considerable time both submitting and reviewing safety reports. At one point, I had filed more error and adverse drug reactions reports than all the other physicians at my public hospital in Chicago combined, making me either the institution’s most dangerous prescriber or its most diligent reporter,” he writes.

What he describes about underreporting of drug adverse events by physicians cuts to a core problem of vaccine safety. On the one hand, the federal Vaccine Adverse Event Reporting System (VAERS) is specifically set up to record adverse events related to vaccines in the U.S. On the other hand, it’s criticized as being unreliable due to severe underreporting.

The answer is obvious: insist on mandatory reporting. But that’s not happening. On the contrary, there appears to be a concerted effort to control and manipulate statistics by discouraging and minimizing reports, effectively sweeping problems — no matter how severe or widespread — under the proverbial rug.

Parents of vaccine injured children were the ones who secured vaccine safety informing, recording and reporting provisions in the National Childhood Vaccine Injury Act of 1986. The law’s vaccine reaction reporting requirement directed doctors and all vaccine providers to report adverse events following vaccination to VAERS, which is jointly operated by the CDC and the FDA.

This is NOT a prerequisite for the person making a vaccine reaction report to VAERS to personally make a judgment about whether or not he or she believes the adverse event was caused by the vaccination. Rather, a report is supposed to be filed for any and all hospitalizations, injuries, deaths and serious health problems following vaccination. Period. It’s not up to the vaccine provider to decide whether a reaction is related to the vaccine or not.

Despite this legal requirement, most vaccine providers are unfamiliar with the reporting process, are confused about who should be doing the reporting, and/or are unwilling to file a report. Each year, VAERS receives about 30,000 reports, and studies into reporting habits suggest adverse reactions are only filed in 1 to 10 percent of all cases.24

In a 2015 article, an ER nurse and former police officer described his experiences with vaccine reactions. He said he’s seen first-hand how many doctors not only refuse to report vaccine reactions, but actually go through extra trouble to cover them up by altering the medical records and removing mention of recent vaccinations.25,26

Doctors Frequently Overestimate Benefits and Underestimate Harms of Medical Interventions

Meanwhile, recent research27 reveals that clinicians frequently overestimate benefits and underestimate harms of medical treatments, tests and screenings. When it comes to vaccines, there’s little doubt the same pattern is to be found. According to the authors:

“In this systematic review of 48 studies (13, 011 clinicians), most participants correctly estimated 13 percent of the 69 harm expectation outcomes and 11 percent of the 28 benefit expectations. The majority of participants overestimated benefit for 32 percent of outcomes, underestimated benefit for 9 percent, underestimated harm for 34 percent, and overestimated harm for 5 percent of outcomes.

Meaning: Clinicians rarely had accurate expectations of benefits or harms, with inaccuracies in both directions, but more often underestimated harms and overestimated benefits … Inaccurate perceptions about the benefits and harms of interventions are likely to result in suboptimal clinical management choices.”

To finish where I started, I believe it’s imperative we start having an open public discussion about vaccine safety and conflicts of interest in the mandatory vaccination system. The industry does not have the right to shame doctors and patients for wanting to be safe rather than sorry.

The vaccine industry and the federal agencies charged with vaccine safety oversight are rife with conflicts of interest, as the National Vaccine Information Center and other individuals and organizations have pointed out over the past three decades.28,29It’s time to get to the bottom of it. Profit cannot be allowed to continue being the sole driving force of government health recommendations. Our society simply cannot afford to pay that price any longer.

Protect Your Right to Informed Consent and Defend Vaccine Exemptions

With all the uncertainty surrounding the safety and efficacy of vaccines, it’s critical to protect your right to make independent health choices and exercise voluntary informed consent to vaccination. It is urgent that everyone in America stand up and fight to protect and expand vaccine informed consent protections in state public health and employment laws. The best way to do this is to get personally involved with your state legislators and educating the leaders in your community.

THINK GLOBALLY, ACT LOCALLY.

National vaccine policy recommendations are made at the federal level but vaccine laws are made at the state level. It is at the state level where your action to protect your vaccine choice rights can have the greatest impact.

It is critical for EVERYONE to get involved now in standing up for the legal right to make voluntary vaccine choices in America because those choices are being threatened by lobbyists representing drug companies, medical trade associations, and public health officials, who are trying to persuade legislators to strip all vaccine exemptions from public health laws.

Signing up for NVIC’s free Advocacy Portal at www.NVICAdvocacy.org gives you immediate, easy access to your own state legislators on your smart phone or computer so you can make your voice heard. You will be kept up-to-date on the latest state bills threatening your vaccine choice rights and get practical, useful information to help you become an effective vaccine choice advocate in your own community.

Also, when national vaccine issues come up, you will have the up-to-date information and call to action items you need at your fingertips. So please, as your first step, sign up for the NVIC Advocacy Portal.

Share Your Story With the Media and People You Know

If you or a family member has suffered a serious vaccine reaction, injury, or death, please talk about it. If we don’t share information and experiences with one another, everybody feels alone and afraid to speak up. Write a letter to the editor if you have a different perspective on a vaccine story that appears in your local newspaper. Make a call in to a radio talk show that is only presenting one side of the vaccine story.

I must be frank with you; you have to be brave because you might be strongly criticized for daring to talk about the “other side” of the vaccine story. Be prepared for it and have the courage to not back down. Only by sharing our perspective and what we know to be true about vaccination, will the public conversation about vaccination open up so people are not afraid to talk about it.

We cannot allow the drug companies and medical trade associations funded by drug companies or public health officials promoting forced use of a growing list of vaccines to dominate the conversation about vaccination.

The vaccine injured cannot be swept under the carpet and treated like nothing more than “statistically acceptable collateral damage” of national one-size-fits-all mandatory vaccination policies that put way too many people at risk for injury and death. We shouldn’t be treating people like guinea pigs instead of human beings.

Internet Resources Where You Can Learn More

I encourage you to visit the website of the non-profit charity, the National Vaccine Information Center (NVIC), at www.NVIC.org:

  • NVIC Memorial for Vaccine Victims: View descriptions and photos of children and adults, who have suffered vaccine reactions, injuries, and deaths. If you or your child experiences an adverse vaccine event, please consider posting and sharing your story here.
  • If You Vaccinate, Ask 8 Questions: Learn how to recognize vaccine reaction symptoms and prevent vaccine injuries.
  • Vaccine Freedom Wall: View or post descriptions of harassment and sanctions by doctors, employers, and school and health officials for making independent vaccine choices.
  • Vaccine Failure Wall: View or post descriptions about vaccines that have failed to work and protect the vaccinated from disease.

Connect With Your Doctor or Find a New One That Will Listen and Care

If your pediatrician or doctor refuses to provide medical care to you or your child unless you agree to get vaccines you don’t want, I strongly encourage you tohave the courage to find another doctor. Harassment, intimidation, and refusal of medical care is becoming the modus operandi of the medical establishment in an effort to stop the change in attitude of many parents about vaccinations after they become truly educated about health and vaccination. However, there is hope.

At least 15 percent of young doctors recently polled admit that they’re starting to adopt a more individualized approach to vaccinations in direct response to the vaccine safety concerns of parents.

It is good news that there is a growing number of smart young doctors, who prefer to work as partners with parents in making personalized vaccine decisions for children, including delaying vaccinations or giving children fewer vaccines on the same day or continuing to provide medical care for those families, who decline use of one or more vaccines.

So take the time to locate a doctor, who treats you with compassion and respect, and is willing to work with you to do what is right for your child.

Sources and References

The post The Anti-Vaccine Underground appeared first on LewRockwell.

Get Free Cell Phone Service

Ven, 03/02/2017 - 07:01

No, it’s not an Obama-phone. What’s the catch? Well, if you keep your monthly usage to 200 minutes of phone calls, 500 text messages, and 500 MB of data, there is no catch.  Never get a monthly bill.  No Spanish-American war tax. It really is free.  Zero dollars and zero cents.  And, you get to use the latest fancy-pants smartphones. Although I am not being paid to write this and Lew is not being paid to run it, I just have to point out to other liberty lovers another great outcome coming out of the somewhat free market.

Freedompop.com is the brainchild of Stephen Stokols and Steven Sesar. They are both tech gurus who saw the possibilities of VOIP technology flowing through 4G LTE data networks via a smartphone app that is assigned a conventional phone number. The service rides on Sprint’s 4G LTE network but lacks charges for telephone/text usage and associated charges/taxes. The infrastructure-free company obtains large chunks of cheap wholesale data from Sprint and parcels it out to its users via a seamless smartphone app that converts regular phone-number based calls and text messages to data that flows over the 4G network. The phone and internet interface on the phone looks the same as any other smartphone.  It is not like opening a Skype app or Google Hangouts app every time you make a call.

Sprint, apparently seeing the low-cost competition, negotiated to buy Freedom Pop from the founders (and shut it down?).  FreedomPop’s owners ended the negotiations and decided to continue with their own plans.

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Sprint’s geographic coverage is less robust than Verizon, but you will probably do fine if you live in, or near, most cities of a least several thousand people. If you have any doubts, you can check for coverage in your area. The on-line set-up process for the free service will also confirm coverage in your location before proceeding. Sprint’s network was originally built to cover the interstate highway system, so you will also likely have good coverage if you live within a few miles of an interstate highway.

You don’t wind up with a cheap flip-phone under this free plan either. You select a refurbished name-brand smartphone. You can use the phone for all the things you do now, like buying stuff on Amazon, checking Accuweather, and reading LRC—only for free.

You can use a smartphone you already own if your phone is compatible with the Sprint network.  Otherwise, the one-time cost to start up your free service is only to select and buy an inexpensive used or refurbished smartphone from FreedomPop that they will set up for you. It will arrive in the mail ready-to-use. You will get a free phone number assigned for your local area code/call area. Or, you can transfer your existing number. My only cost to use the service was the purchase of a used phone of my choice on their website. I chose a Samsung Galaxy S5 and paid $139 for it. If I stay within the 200 minutes, 500 text messages, and 500 MB of data, I won’t ever be charged anything. You can also turn off the auto-billing functions in the account options so that you will never exceed your allotted usage and never be charged for excess usage. But, even if you do exceed the allowed minutes and texts, you will merely be bumped up to a $7.99 / month unlimited call/text plan with the 500 MB of data.

If you do decide to go whole-hog and buy into all the bells and whistles including the unlimited call and texting options, 1 GB of data, and the hotspot wireless tethering feature for your other devices, you will still wind up with a smartphone plan of less than $20 a month. If you want to stay totally free, just select “no thanks,” etc. on all the offers during the set-up process.

Oh, and I almost forgot to mention, you can also get a free data plan for your tablet from FreedomPop.

The post Get Free Cell Phone Service appeared first on LewRockwell.

Another Gov’t Orgy of Destruction

Ven, 03/02/2017 - 07:01

You’ve heard the saying that history repeats . . . as farce? Well, here we are. Not quite ten years after the government paid people to throw away perfectly good used cars to “stimulate” demand for new ones – the despicable Cash for Clunkers program – the government is doing the same thing again.

Only this time, the cars are not “clunkers” and the government is forcing VW to pay people to throw them away.

Almost 600,000 of them.

These cars are not high-miles and worn out, on their last legs. Many are only a year or two old. Nothing is wrong with any of them – other than their having been deemed “out of compliance” with Byzantine EPA emissions tests.

But only sometimes – and only slightly.

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The cars were programmed to pass the EPA certification tests – required before they could legally be sold. They passed the tests, which incidentally is the same criteria Uncle insist on when it comes to the “education” of “the children” in government schools. Pass the tests (SOLs) and you pass on to the next grade. Kids are “taught” to pass the tests.

Uncle smiles.

But in VW’s case, it was later discovered that the programming was set up to run the engine differently – that is, better from the standpoint of the people buying and driving the cars – when out on the road and not connected to the EPA’s emissions test dynamometers. Under certain operating conditions – wide open throttle, for one – the calibrations were set to produce maximum performance.

Or, under other conditions, maximum miles-per-gallon.

Diesel-powered VWs like the Jetta and Passat TDI routinely delivered better-than-advertised (by EPA) mileage, out in real-world driving. I can vouch for this personally, having test driven every TDI-powered VW sold over the past 10 years. They all used less fuel – delivered higher mileage – than EPA said they would. Interesting. Less fuel used equals less exhaust gas produced equals lower emissions overall.

VW never gets credit for that.

Crickets. Including from the mother-loving “environmental community.”

Which makes my teeth hurt because if you do the arithmetic, the more-efficient-than-advertised VW diesels reduced the aggregate of harmful emissions yugely vs. the fractional per car increase in tailpipe emissions generated by the “cheating” software.

Whole number differences, mind.

Now add to the tabulations the 562,000 high-efficiency cars slated for destruction. They will be replaced by gas-burning cars  that use 20-30 percent more fuel to travel the same distance.

More whole number increases in the “harmful” exhaust byproducts EPA apparatchiks insist they are protecting us from.

It’s shameful.

But – once again – “demand” will be “stimulated” by this gratuitous destruction of value. The 562,000 owners of the targeted-for-termination TDI VWs will need a new car to replace the one bought back and thrown away.

Some may buy/lease another VW, which will give the appearance of increasing VW’s sales; some – soured on VW – will buy a new car from someone else. It will “stimulate” new car sales generally, a kind of four-wheeled take on the Potempkin Village concept. Create a facade, make things look good.

Just don’t look behind the facade.

Read the Whole Article

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Seattle SJW Calls for Mass Murder

Ven, 03/02/2017 - 07:01

We recently warned that America is about to see unprecedented protests and rioting from coast to coast.

But don’t take our word for it.

A social justice warrior involved in the Seattle street protests tells you everything you need to know about what the future holds and lends further evidence to the notion that America sits on the precipice of widespread civil unrest.

The woman, who also claims to be a pre-school teacher, implies that it’s time for extreme measures, including but not limited to killing people, starting at the White House.

Just so you know… we need to start killing people… first off we need to start killing the White House… the White House might die… your fucking White House… your fucking White House must go…

As you’ll see below, when she claims it’s time to start killing people she is most likely referring to white people exclusively. But killing isn’t enough.

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If you’re white, it’s time you started kicking some of your hard-earned wealth her way, including your cash and your house:

White people… give your fucking money… give your fucking house… your fucking property… we need it fucking all… you need to reparate black and indigenous people right now…. Pay the fuck off… it ain’t just your fucking time.. it’s your fucking money…

Watch her full speech (and then be sure to register your kids with her pre-school):

Reprinted with permission from SHTFplan.com.

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