Tucker: Our leaders have sided with the agents of chaos

Our leaders have sided with the agents of chaos, by Tucker Carlson. Highly recommended.

The given reasons vary all the time, but that’s only on the surface. Race, capitalism, the Minneapolis police department — they’re all just excuses. This is another round in the ancient battle between those with a stake in society and those who don’t. Producers versus parasites. Those defending civilization versus those who want to tear it down for immediate gain.

What’s unusual about today, and what makes this so newsworthy, is that the clerisy — our ruling class — are rather supportive of the parasites. Apply the law to the looters? No thanks. Would they do this if it was right wing protesters or the tea party? Hell no, the language and response would be 180 degrees different.

Increasingly, the right wing is the home for the producers and the left the home for the parasites who live by government extortion (taxes). Those who live by private enterprise, whose services are taken up voluntarily (there’s a moral difference), are on the bad end of the trend. The left threaten to take control of everything, forever, as government grows, the media abandons a pretense of objectivity, and immigration forever changes the west to have a more third world mix. Our civilization is not, to use one of their favorite words, sustainable.

As Tucker says towards the end, “Should you keep playing along with all of that?”

UPDATE: Here’s the whole show:

UPDATE 2: Paul Joseph Watson’s take:

hat-tip Stephen Neil

When they do it, it’s speaking. No problem.

When they do it, it’s speaking. No problem.

This has happened before. This is a cultural classic. Commenting on a similar situation in the 1960s:

Back to reality. A mob in a major US city just burned down a police station. No one was arrested.

Where the Current Conventional Wisdom on Privilege Is Headed, by Steve Sailer.

Here is the direction the Conventional Wisdom is drifting at present: Due to centuries of White Privilege, blacks from now on should enjoy the privilege of resisting arrest if they really don’t feel like being arrested.

This is not to say that no black should ever be arrested, just that, in the ultimate analysis, black privilege is now more sacred than the law, so if a black really, really doesn’t want to submit to the cops, his feelings and his privileged person must override all other considerations, such as equal treatment of the laws.

Medical Examiner: George Floyd Wasn’t Asphyxiated

Medical Examiner: George Floyd Wasn’t Asphyxiated, by John Hinderaker.

Recall how in the Travyon Martin, “Hands Up Don’t Shoot,” and a dozen other US racial episodes, the initial picture painted by the media turned out to be completely untrue? Pretty much the reverse of what happened? But that the left continued with the initial picture, long after it was shown to be false, and in fact never acknowledged the truth? In both cases mentioned it took a few days for the truth to emerge.

Just last night Joanne and I were watching this on the news. Sure looks pretty bad for the cops — a pretty straightforward case of police brutality, we thought. But let’s wait a few days to see if something else arises.

Lo and behold:

Today we got the first information from Hennepin County’s Medical Examiner, in an attachment to the criminal complaint against officer Derek Chauvin:

“The Hennepin County Medical Examiner (ME) conducted Mr. Floyd’s autopsy on May 26, 2020. The full report of the ME is pending but the ME has made the following preliminary findings. The autopsy revealed no physical findings that support a diagnosis of traumatic asphyxia or strangulation. Mr. Floyd had underlying health conditions including coronary artery disease and hypertensive heart disease. The combined effects of Mr. Floyd being restrained by the police, his underlying health conditions and any potential intoxicants in his system likely contributed to his death.”

Emphasis added. Further, the complaint’s Statement of Probable Cause recites that Floyd complained of being unable to breathe well before Officer Chauvin put his knee on Floyd’s neck:

“While standing outside the car, Mr. Floyd began saying and repeating that he could not breathe.”

Does this mean that the officers’ handling of the situation was a model of fine police work? Of course not. And the manner in which they handled Floyd could have contributed to his death, according to the Medical Examiner. But the outrage over the Floyd case has mostly been based on the assumption that Officer Chauvin choked him to death by kneeling on his throat. If that assumption is false, the story is far more nuanced.

But as noted above, the actual incident has almost nothing to do with the ensuing violence. The latter is all about narrative and power. As for truth and facts, our postmodern ruling class pays only occasional lip service (when convenient).

The Left’s Narratives versus the Right’s Facts

The Left’s Narratives versus the Right’s Facts, by the Z-Man.

The politics of multiculturalism, if you examine the claims, is narrative driven, always around a story of group conflict. Blacks, for example, are in their present condition because of the long oppression by whites. Feminism is the story of female liberation from the patriarchy. It’s why the Left falls for rape hoaxes and noose hoaxes so easily, despite the history of these hoaxes. The hoax fits the narrative that for them, explains everything about the world and their role in it.

The naive right:

On the other hand, the politics of conventional conservatism is about facts and ideas, specifically the rejection of the narrative idea. The Right in America, the conventional Right, … have always been convinced that “their own beliefs would creep up on the ideas of the Left, slit their throats in the dark, and stage an intellectual and cultural coup d’état, after which truth would reign.” Being right is all that matters. …

Ironically, this fact versus narrative dichotomy is most popular and most well-known because of Jewish conservatives like Ben Shapiro. He is famous for saying “Facts don’t care about your feelings.” He invests a lot of time discouraging whites from embracing their own narratives to counter those on the Left. Instead, they are supposed to embrace facts, as facts are the magic that will destroy the narrative. …

Narrative versus facts suits the left, because narrative wins in the short to medium term:

The thing is though, this fact versus narrative construct is a left-wing creation, at least it serves left-wing ends. Narrative is the predicate for morality. The reason the Bible is full of stories is moral claims naturally rise from stories.

A good narrative not only encompasses the known facts, it orders them. These are the important facts of the story, while these are not essential, there for color and context. It is this ordering that reinforces and existing morality or creates a new one.

Of course, this is why the fact side of the dichotomy favors the Left. When Shapiro demands you focus on facts, it is so you do not focus on the moral framework.

This week’s death of Floyd fits a narrative the left have been painting for decades. So off they go, not waiting for the facts (which may well turn out to contradict the narrative). By the time the facts catch up, it’s too late. The violence has been done. And the media only retell the narrative, not the facts.

The non-left has to get a whole lot better at countering the left’s narratives, or they will continue to lose.

Climate change is a good example. The facts show that the carbon dioxide theory of global warming is wrong. But the narrative and media control has swept the facts off the battlefield of ideas. At this stage, would anyone even take any notice of a book that pointed out the error in the climate models? The world won’t warm as the climate scientists keep predicting — it’s even likely to cool for the next three decades — but between rigged thermometers and the dominant carbon dioxide narrative no one will know. Relax, the Earth’s not in any danger. However, the excuse of global warming will have been used by the left to derail industrial civilization and foist ever-bigger government upon us. By the time the world finds out the carbon dioxide theory was exaggerated nonsense, the damage will have been done.

European gateway Israel and Costa Rica rush to join plans for Australia-New Zealand tourism bubble

European gateway Israel and Costa Rica rush to join plans for Australia-New Zealand tourism bubble, by Clare Armstrong.

Plans have been launched for a quarantine-free gateway to Europe through Israel by December, and a long-haul flight to Costa Rica, as countries that have managed COVID-19 effectively race to join Australia and New Zealand’s tourism bubble proposal.

Israel wants to schedule a permanent flight to its economic hub of Tel Aviv from either Sydney or Melbourne to open itself up as a stepping stone to ‘safe’ European countries including Norway, Denmark, Greece and the Czech Republic.

Israel’s Ambassador to Australia Mark Sofer said the “win-win” plan would help to revive the vital tourism sector in both countries and provide airlines with a quarantine-free economically viable route. …


Preflight health checks, strict contact tracing requirements, extra aircraft cleaning, and passenger number limits form the blueprint for reopening borders between Australia and New Zealand.

A draft proposal for a “safe travel zone” developed by a team of 40 experts making up the Trans-Tasman Safe Border Group will be handed to both governments by early June. …

There are also reports some Pacific Islands, such as Fiji, could be included in a trans-Tasman bubble.

Beijing crushes Hong Kong’s spirit under a legal jackboot

Beijing crushes Hong Kong’s spirit under a legal jackboot, by Greg Sheridan.

The Chinese Communist Party has decided now to crush the semi-independent, liberal way of life, based on the rule of law and independent institutions, that the people of Hong Kong have enjoyed since before the territory’s handover to Beijing in 1997.

The passage by Beijing’s National People’s Congress of a national security law to apply in Hong Kong makes this now stark and clear and undeniable.

Under the Sino-British Joint Declaration, and Hong Kong’s Basic Law that flowed from it, Hong Kong is meant to have its own national security laws. …

Under Beijing’s new national security law for Hong Kong it will become a crime to spread false information, engage in acts of sedition or secession, and to conspire with foreign agents.

Beijing’s People’s Armed Police, the Ministry of State Security and other similar mainland institutions will set up in Hong Kong.

The vagueness in Chinese law of terms such as sedition and foreign agents suggests virtually anyone in Hong Kong who participated in demonstrations such as those that transfixed the world over the past 14 months, even the most peaceful demonstrations, would be liable for savage punishment.

This is a looming, terrible and perhaps irreversible tragedy for the people of Hong Kong. …

Beijing’s moves are clearly in violation of the agreement under which Hong Kong fell under Beijing’s control in 1997, which provided that the people of Hong Kong would exercise “a high degree of autonomy” and would preserve their distinctive way of life for 50 years. …

The Chinese Communist Party brings together two ideological dynamics unique in global history. The first is Marxism/Leninism. Western analysts routinely pooh-pooh Marxism/Leninism, if they’ve ever even heard of it. But one compliment analysts should pay the Chinese is to listen to what they actually say, especially to each other.

The Chinese Communist Party has fashioned its own ideological position but it has taken at least five lessons from Marxism/Leninism. …

  1. the centrality of the Communist Party to the state
  2. the dominance of the state in the economy
  3. the necessity for the party to ruthlessly maintain control over every element of state power
  4. the historical, almost metaphysical quality of the party as the vanguard of history, the animating agent of history …
  5. the notion that political life for the party and the citizenry is one of continuous struggle.

This last is a theme Xi himself has often repeated. …

The second great ideological dynamic that powers the Chinese Communist Party is the tradition of Chinese nationalism and exceptionalism.

Under Xi, Beijing has fashioned a pervasively ideological view of all history. It has determined, for instance, that the Qing Dynasty (1636 to 1912), China’s last imperial rule before the Chinese republic was established early in the 20th century, was a uniquely benign, and uniquely non-military, golden child of world history.

The Qing dynasty, like all other empires in human history, expanded in part through military conquest. But under modern Communist Party orthodoxy it is seen as having won support from the periphery of the Chinese empire, from Tibet and Xinjiang, from Taiwan and Inner Mongolia, entirely through acceptance of its superior civilisational qualities.


UPDATE: US splits with WHO as Trump strips Hong Kong, by Daniel Sankey.

The United States will reverse Hong Kong’s special customs status and bar “certain foreign nationals from China” as President Donald Trump hit back over new security plans for Hong Kong. …

Mr Trump said China had “broken its word” on Hong Kong, with the institution of new powers to quash unrest “diminishing the city’s longstanding and very proud status.” …

“I am directing my administration to begin the process of eliminating policy that gives Hong Kong different and special treatment.

“This will affect the full range of agreements, from our extradition treaty to our export controls on dual-use technologies and more, with few exceptions.”

And WHO gets the flick:

In a press conference at the White House this morning (AEST), Mr Trump also said the US would terminate its relationship with the World Health Organisation, which he said had not made any reforms in the wake of the deadly coronavirus.

What would Hillary, Obama, or Biden have done? Probably nothing. Given WHO more money so it can do a better job next time? Given implicit acquiescence to China by “recognizing reality”, while accepting Chinese donations funneled through Chinese businessmen? Maybe the Chinese would give their children valuable “jobs”?

Trump versus Twitter

Trump versus Twitter, by Rory Cellan-Jones at the BBC.

Seeing President Trump immediately go nuclear and threatening to go so far as to shut the social media platform down, Twitter might have been tempted to go quiet for a bit.

Instead, it chose escalation.

In the early hours of Friday morning, in a tweet about the protests in Minneapolis over the death of a black man, Mr Trump warned: “when the looting starts, the shooting starts“.

Twitter’s moderation team swung into action — after consulting CEO Jack Dorsey — and obscured the tweet with a message saying that rules on glorifying violence had been broken. Users could still see the tweet by clicking through that message, but sharing it was made harder.

A few hours later, as the president woke up, the official White House account simply repeated the offending tweet. We watched with bated breath to see what would happen and, sure enough, Twitter’s moderators slapped the same warning on the tweet.

It is difficult to see either side backing down now.

Twitter now finds itself either as the world’s censor, or just an inconsistent and naked propagandist. It must choose one.

The White House is busy scouring Twitter to find examples of other world leaders who have glorified violence without any comeback. Others are finding all sorts of old Trump tweets that appear to have broken the rules by, for instance, spreading misinformation about treatments for coronavirus.

Jack Dorsey, who had appeared very reluctant to apply anything but the most light-touch regulation [?? -ed], now finds himself faced with the unappealing prospect of cracking down on world leaders far and wide. …

Facebook had started down this road earlier, but backed off:

Mark Zuckerberg has made it clear he has no intention of following Jack Dorsey’s lead when it comes to fact checking politicians. Donald Trump’s Facebook page has simply replicated the posts which fell foul of Twitter — with no sign of fact-checking or finger-wagging.

Ooh, we can see what the BBC wants. Trump uses Twitter to bypass the media to talk directly to voters and to influence the topics under public discussion. The BBC would obviously prefer he didn’t have Twitter access, so the BBC and co. could go back being the only gatekeepers between a Republican president and the public. The media sure kept George Bush semi-gagged and under their thumb.

Like the fighting couple in some dodgy romcom, Trump and Twitter need each other — though one suspects Jack Dorsey might be tempted to throw the President out and change the locks.

Ooh giggle the left, Twitter is a private company so it can do what it likes. So were the bakeries, so were the bakeries. But unlike the bakeries, Twitter is a virtual monopoly due to the networking effect, so anti-trust principles apply.

A reader comments:

This is appalling rubbish from the BBC Propaganda Service. Just awful.

For a start, Twitter has been de-platforming people left, right, and centre if they depart from the PC Left’s narrative. So “… very reluctant to apply anything but the most light-touch regulation” is a flat-out lie.

Twitter has no business “cracking down on” or regulating anybody, let alone world leaders. It is NOT a publisher and should not be exercising editorial privileges which, in the case of people who aren’t PC Left, means censorship.

Will somebody please de-fund the BBC as a matter of great urgency.

UPDATE: Twitter Censors Trump Tweet Denouncing Riots; Took No Action On Tweets Supporting Riots.


The ceaseless culture war against Hungary

The ceaseless culture war against Hungary, by Frank Furedi.

If you listen to the Western media, you might think that in the weeks following the outbreak of Covid-19 the government of Hungary had transformed itself into a brutal dictatorship. There was a constant stream of articles claiming that democracy had died in Hungary. Opinion pieces insisted that the Hungarian government had exploited people’s concerns about the pandemic to impose a 1930s-style authoritarian dictatorship. …

These alarmist accounts of democratic backsliding in Hungary were a key theme in these Culture Wars. On the anti-sovereigntist wing of the cultural conflict, Hungary was held up as symbolic of an ideology of evil. …

Evil dictator, or just another European leader with emergency powers in response to Covid?

The Economist responded to Hungary’s enactment of a state of emergency by claiming that Viktor Orban, the prime minister, ‘has in effect become a dictator – in the heart of Europe’. The Guardian declared that the ‘world must not let Hungary get away with this power grab’. Writing in the EUobserver, Kenneth Roth, the executive director of Human Rights Watch, claimed that Hungary was now a dictatorship and therefore the EU had ceased to be a bloc of democratic states. …

The hypocrisy:

It is worth noting that other governments that enacted emergency powers in response to the Covid pandemic were not accused of such malevolent intent.

Why was Hungary held to a different standard? The answer was devastatingly simple. ‘Orban cannot be trusted’, Western observers implied. It was really another way of saying: ‘We don’t like him.’ …

What in fact happened:

This week, the Hungarian government initiated procedures to end the state of emergency. It will end on 20 June. This means Hungary has acted more speedily than many other governments to bring to a close its Covid measures.

Will those who spread the idea that Hungary had become a dictatorship acknowledge that they were wrong? Will they apologise for their slanderous statements about Hungary? Don’t hold your breath. It really doesn’t matter what the Hungarian government does; its adversaries in the West will always portray it as a dangerous dictatorship threatening European values. …

Inconvenient truths about Hungary are always met with a wall of silence in most of the Western press. …

The role of Hungary in the culture wars:

In the current Culture Wars, Hungary has become a kind of lightning rod through which the negative sentiments of the Western cultural establishment — especially their anti-sovereigntist views — can be expressed. …

Whenever a British, German or American newspaper editor or observer denounces the ‘dictatorship’ in Hungary, they are also indirectly attacking movements and politicians in their own countries who oppose the prevailing cultural norms. That is why those of us who supported Brexit in the UK, and who call for the valuation of national sovereignty in countries around the world, have a real interest in supporting Hungary against its Western detractors.

hat-tip Stephen Neil

Sweden: Girl, 17, ‘beheaded by ex-boyfriend Muslim migrant who wrapped her head in aluminium foil’

Sweden: Girl, 17, ‘beheaded by ex-boyfriend Muslim migrant who wrapped her head in aluminium foil’, by Lorraine King.

Tishko Ahmed Shabaz, 23, is accused of decapitating 17-year-old Wilma Andersson in Sweden when she visited his flat to collect her belongings after ending their relationship. …

A unnamed police chief said: “The suspect has retained a body part for an unknown reason and got rid of the rest of the body.”

Prosecutors claim Wilma was subjected to ‘repeated violence’ during her death.

Wilma’s devastated mum Linda has issued an emotional appeal begging people to continue their search and help her to find the rest of her daughter’s body.

Robert Spencer:

A culture of violence, the foundational text of which commands men to beat women from whom they “fear disobedience” (Qur’an 4:34), is going to give rise to this sort of thing, just as that same foundational text’s calls for violence against unbelievers (2:191, 4:89, 9:5, 9:29, 47:4, etc.) are going to give rise to jihad violence.

This is the new Sweden. Celebrate diversity!

Our ruling class refuses to recognize the danger to the West posed by Islam, no matter how obvious it is. You will be ostracized even for broaching the topic, no matter how obliquely.

Muslims in the West overwhelmingly vote left, for more welfare. Like the left, they enjoy undermining the Christian foundations of our society. The left ban criticism of radical Islam and Muslim immigration. Coincidence? Muslim immigrants also destroy the high trust and solidarity our society used to enjoy.

hat-tip Stephen Neil

Donald Trump Signs Exec Order to Curb Big Tech’s ‘Unchecked Power’

Donald Trump Signs Exec Order to Curb Big Tech’s ‘Unchecked Power’, by Charlie Spiering.

Donald Trump Signs Exec Order to Curb Big Tech’s ‘Unchecked Power’ …

“They’ve had unchecked power to censor restrict, edit shape hide alter virtually any form of communication between private citizens or large public audiences,” Trump said.

The president criticized the growing monopoly of social media companies in America, vowing to act to change the regulatory framework for the companies.

“There’s no precedent in American history for so small a number of corporations to control so large a sphere of interaction,” he said.

Trump said the increasing editorial actions by social media to control the content on their platforms endangered their liability shield under Section 230 of the Communications Decency Act as a neutral public platform.

“The choices that Twitter makes, when it chooses to suppress, edit, blacklist, shadowban are editorial decisions, pure and simple, they are editorial decisions,” Trump said.

The president accused the companies of political activism, calling it “inappropriate.”

“What they choose to fact check and what they choose to ignore or promote is nothing more than a political activism group,” he said.

You can be a platform, in which case you are not responsible for the contents appearing on your site because you did not choose it. So you cannot be sued for defamation.

Or you can be a publisher, in which case you can choose what appears on your site but are responsible for it. So you can be sued for defamation.

Social media want to be able to choose what appears on their site, but not be responsible for it. Talk about eating your cake but still having it.

Trump, a victim of social media site Twitter a few days ago, just changed that. You have to choose, Twitter. You might not enjoy the new game.

hat-tip Stephen Neil

Twitter wants to target conservatives — with none of a publisher’s responsibilities

Twitter wants to target conservatives — with none of a publisher’s responsibilities. By Sohrab Ahmari.

If Twitter is going to “fact check” the leader of the Free World, with a hard leftist as part of the team doing so, then it should be treated as the publisher that it is — with all the liabilities that entails. …

On Tuesday, Twitter appended a fact-check label to a presidential tweet about the fraud risk associated with mail-in voting. The exclamation urged users to “get the facts about mail-in ballots.”

The link took users to a CNN story with the headline: “Trump makes unsubstantiated claim that mail-in ballots will lead to voter fraud.” It was the kind of opinion-masquerading-as-reportage that CNN, and too many other mainstream outlets, specialize in. …

None of this comes as a surprise to conservatives on Twitter. For years, Twitter has censored conservative voices, increasingly without even bothering with the pretense of platform neutrality.

Who gets to decide what the President can say on Twitter?

And now we know why: A key actor in Twitter’s censorship operation turns out to be Yoel Roth, a fellow … blessed with a Silicon Valley sinecure (“head of site integrity”) that allows him to decisively slant the national conversation on the Web.

It was Roth who along with a co-worker introduced Twitter’s new “fact-checking” policy. …

Roth also happens to be a rabid hater of Trump and the 63 million Americans who voted for him.

“I’m just saying,” he tweeted in November 2016, “we fly over those states that voted for a racist tangerine for a reason.”

In January 2017: “ ‘Today on Meet the Press, we’re speaking with Joseph Goebbels about the first 100 days. . .’—what I hear when [Trump aide] Kellyanne [Conway] is on a news show.”

In July 2017: “How does a personality-free bag of farts like [Senate Majority Leader] Mitch McConnell actually win elections?”

An Open Letter to the D.C. Right: The scales have fallen from my eyes, and the sight before me is a sorry thing indeed.

An Open Letter to the D.C. Right: The scales have fallen from my eyes, and the sight before me is a sorry thing indeed. By Bruce Bawer.

I’ve known you for decades. You’re think-tankers, government officials, political journalists, and pundits. …

For a long while, I thought you were the good guys. You talked about individual liberty. Some of you identified as conservatives, others as libertarians, still others as classical liberals. None of you are outright leftists. …

You cheered my books on gay rights. (Many of you are gay.) But when I started writing critically about Islam, you went mum. All of you. You didn’t attack me in public, but you didn’t express support, either.

But that was OK.

Then Donald Trump came along. He spoke of liberty and of putting America First.

Your public rage at him — and his supporters — was instantaneous. It was visceral, full-throated, and constant.

I didn’t remember any of you getting that worked up about Barack Obama. Ever.

For a moment, at the very beginning, I didn’t quite get it. Then I got it. Of course. It was obvious.

Trump represented an existential threat to everything you had — your job security, your social status, your sumptuous lives in places like Chevy Chase, Falls Church, and Georgetown.

You knew — somehow all of you could tell instinctively — that when Trump talked about liberty, he meant it.

But you? However much you talked about liberty, at bottom you weren’t really about liberty at all — at least not the individual liberty of ordinary Americans.

What were you about? Well, for one thing, you were about the “liberty” of giant American corporations to move their factories abroad, even to Communist countries, without penalty.

For those of you who work at think tanks, this position was understandable: owners of giant corporations paid your hefty salaries.

Yes, over the decades, as a result of policies you advocated, countless working Americans lost their jobs to workers in other countries — some of them children, some of them literally slaves, all of them paid little or nothing.

Such losses, you asserted, were regrettable, but in the end everybody would benefit.

Well, look who’s benefited: The Chinese Communist Party. Carlos Slim. The Silicon Valley Billionaire Boys’ Club.

And, of course, you. Because nobody was exporting your jobs to China or Mexico. 

When the Democrats tried to sell the patently phony Russian-collusion narrative and impeachment case, some of you joined in the pile-on. Some didn’t: such matters weren’t in your wheelhouse. Besides, at least some of you had to have realized early on that it was all lies.

But none of you blew the whistle on it.

The Obama people were trying to overturn the 2016 election — a reprehensible betrayal of constitutional principles that put the United States through years of hell.

And what did you do? Even if you didn’t explicitly parrot Rachel Maddow, you nonetheless aided and abetted this coup attempt by staying silent about it while continuing to slam Trump over the trivial outrage du jour. …

Yes, Obama had been unmasked as a felon, a traitor. But you and your pals in the corridors of power in New York, Washington, and Los Angeles just kept on with the usual day-to-day Trump-bashing.

Proof of Obama’s crimes had been placed in front of all of you, and you all swept it aside without a moment’s hesitation. …

None of you cared that Obama and his people were crooks. You didn’t care that this was about the fundamental principles of the American constitutional republic.

You were just that cynical. …

One of you — a longtime friend of mine — even addressed Trump voters directly, telling us that we should be ashamed to have voted for him and ordering us not to do it again.

Sorry, but as a lifelong freelancer who’s never had to write a word at odds with my own conscience, I don’t like taking orders from people who’ve been paid generously to parrot their paymasters’ opinions.

The sheer refusal to engage with reality was breathtaking. …

If you can shrug off the transgressions of Obama and his courtiers so blithely, it’s because you’re all fellow members of the same establishment as Obama, Biden, Brennan, Comey, Clapper, and the Clintons, with the same values and priorities.

Guilt and innocence? Right and wrong? Right and Left? Who cares about such things? That’s for rubes in Flyover Country.

What matters is preserving your privileges as members of the patrician class.

For a long time, I didn’t realize — or couldn’t realize, or perhaps even chose not to realize — that this was what I was looking at when I looked at you.

No more. The scales have fallen from my eyes, and the sight before me is a sorry thing indeed.

Yep. Follow the money.

Espionage and Beijing Opera in the South China Sea

The New Cold War With China, by Dr. Edward Luttwak.

The South China Sea:

The United States under Trump has started the pushback in the South China Sea. The Chinese claim of sovereignty has been comprehensively refuted, has been ridiculed actually.

The Chinese do not have sovereignty at all. The Americans fly over them, sail in there, and other countries do too. And Japan also will have to do this. …

No practical military person would ever put valuable weapons on coral reefs in the middle of the sea where they cannot be protected by any means.

South China Sea

From a military point of view, these bases are not serious. This is theater. These are Beijing opera bases.

You don’t put a base on a coral reef because it gets blown out. If there were any kind of war, it gets blown out in the first five minutes. …

They are outposts, unprotected outposts, so they are very good for symbolic purposes. But it also means that if you fly over them and sail between them, you are negating their only value, which is symbolic.

The real nature of the confrontation:

The real action is geo-economic and technological competition. And there the coalition has further allies.

For example, in Europe, the Chinese can no longer go and acquire technology companies. Until a few years ago, maybe even a year ago, the Chinese could go and buy a German company, French, Italian, whatever, and bring the technology back to China.

They can’t anymore. There is now careful observation, they need approval to buy it, and the approval is denied. …

The race is on between research and development conducted in the West, versus Chinese research and development plus Chinese espionage.

As far as I know, Americans are not trying to steal Chinese technology. …

Attitudes must change:

As we speak, there are hundreds of Chinese citizens in Google. Then, there are much bigger numbers of American-born Chinese, many of whom have connections with China.

And we have a phenomenon like Microsoft, which has an advanced research center in Beijing. And who do you think works there? It’s not Brazilians or Portuguese. It’s Chinese citizens.

So, if this is going to be a technology race, what does it mean to operate a Microsoft advanced research center in Beijing? It means that whatever you do, you are giving to the Chinese. For free. …

What is missing is serious security, which you don’t have. We don’t have security rules; we don’t have a security mentality.

Just remember that last year, Google employees voted and pressed and lobbied and said Google should not cooperate with the Pentagon.

An American company in the United States says, “We will not cooperate with the Pentagon.” But they are cooperating with China.

A new cold war:

This is like the Cold War in 1946. In 1946, Winston Churchill went to America and said an Iron Curtain has descended in Europe and we have to oppose the Soviet Union.

Everybody shouted at Churchill that he was a warmonger and Russia is our ally, the Soviet Union was our brave ally, Stalin was our great ally.

It took several years. We are at this early stage, with lack of awareness of what the geo-technological competition means.

It means no Microsoft in Beijing and it means real security in the United States.

hat-tip David Archibald

Is this the week the magic died for Boris Johnson?

Is this the week the magic died for Boris Johnson? By Stephen Daisley.

What is really going on here? The via dolorosa Boris Johnson is trudging along is about more than Dominic Cummings’s actions and the Prime Minister’s refusal to acknowledge they were wrong, let alone ask the bloke for his ticket. The government’s Covid-19 messaging has been eviscerated, health guidance undermined, public goodwill forfeited and political capital amassed across ten months expended in a few days. The Prime Minister believes all this is worth it. …

Some believe Cummings’ talents as a strategist, proven in the EU referendum and the Red Wall-smashing 2019 election victory, have convinced the Prime Minister that he needs him. Others point to Cummings’ role in shaping Johnson’s agenda (Brexit, levelling-up) and his centrality to the day-to-day running of government. These considerations will be prominent in the Prime Minister’s thinking but perhaps foremost will be his and his adviser’s shared ambition to remake the Conservatives as a radical party. Cummings is the architect and Johnson the front man for that project, one that represents a far more daring departure than even Tony Blair and Peter Mandelson attempted with New Labour. …

Almost six-in-ten voters believe Cummings should resign, including 52 per cent of Leavers … If we think of Cummings and Johnson as populists it seems deliciously ironic, and not a little perverse, that they are making themselves very unpopular with the public by appearing to be as out-of-touch and high-handed as the elites they rail against.

But if we think of them as pragmatic disruptors, a temporary quarrel with the country is a price worth paying to triumph over what they see as the obstacles to their project: the media, the expert class, the civil service and the Tory party….

If Dominic Cummings stays, the reconstruction of the Conservative party and of government in the UK will become infinitely harder to obstruct. If he goes, it will represent an ideological defeat for the Cummings-Johnson project and leave Boris Johnson’s government adrift. The Prime Minister is putting his premiership on the line to save Dominic Cummings because he believes that, without him, he won’t have a premiership anyway.

The other diseases the coronavirus lockdown stopped in their tracks

The other diseases the coronavirus lockdown stopped in their tracks, by Stuart Layt.

Rates of influenza have been squashed flat after initially hinting at another serious year for case numbers.

The numbers went so low Queensland Chief Health Officer Dr Jeannette Young said residents of the state were more likely to get COVID-19 than a flu in 2020.


Obviously, quarantine has always restricted the sick and the healthy, because there has never been a way to tell who was and who wasn’t infectious in the incubation period. When whole boats were quarantined, no one knew who was healthy or sick, and mandatory quarantine applied to boats with zero known infections. In the 1300s, whole areas would be quarantined and escapees were sometimes executed.

Did you know that to bring in a healthy animal to Australia from a country where rabies is present the healthy dog has to be quarantined for six months to prove it does not have rabies?

Asymptomatic spread is relevant in Whooping Cough, Dengue, Epstein Barr, Cytomegalovirus, Herpes Simplex, HIV, Helicobacter Pylori, Legionnaires, Measles, Leprosy, TB, Meningitis, Gonorrhoea, Samonella, Norovirus, Polio, Malaria, Rabies, Rhinovirus, Lyssavirus, Typhoid, Golden Staff, Strep pneumonia, and syphillus.

On Quarantine: Typhoid Mary was healthy but quarantined for 23 years.

In 1917 30,000 female prostitutes were held in prison even after they tested negative to stop the spread of STD’s to soldiers.

In 2003 with SARS  “Canada quarantined almost 100 people for every confirmed SARS case in the country. Though Toronto only had 250 probable cases, about 30,000 people were confined in hospitals and their homes.”