Category Archives: Losing Freedom

Banned Film Exposes the Real Reason for the COVID Pandemic

(Banned on Youtube and Facebook). I have not watched the video yet, but the article describes “reality” pretty well. mrossol

The Epoch Times, March 12, 2022, by Joseph Mercola

Prior to 2020, if you heard the term “lockdown” you might think of something that happens in a prison — not in a free society. This mechanism of control has since become commonplace — not among prisoners but among the free — with repercussions that are only beginning to be understood.

The film Planet Lockdown explores this unprecedented time in history, speaking with epidemiologists, scientists, doctors and other experts to uncover the real motives behind the increasing totalitarian control taking over the globe. Already banned by Facebook and YouTube,1 the film starts at the beginning of the pandemic, when we were told lockdowns were necessary to “flatten the curve.”

This was supposed to be a short-term, 15-day event in the U.S., but the narrative soon changed to ongoing restrictions. As Michael Yeadon, Ph.D., a former vice-president and chief scientific adviser of the drug company Pfizer and founder and CEO of the biotech company Ziarco, now owned by Novartis, explained, people have historically quarantined the sick, but quarantining healthy people, as has occurred for the past two years, has no scientific backing or historic precedence.2

“Given this virus represents, at most, a slightly bigger risk to the old and ill than seasonal influenza, and a less risk, a smaller risk, to almost everyone else who’s younger and fit,” Yeadon says, “it was never necessary for us to have done anything. We didn’t need to do anything — lockdowns, masks, testing, vaccines even.”3

The filmmakers of Planet Lockdown are allowing a free viewing of this film (for a limited time). CLICK HERE to learn more about their important mission and see how you can help!
 

Questionable Practices Urged for COVID-19 Diagnosis

Dr. Scott Jensen, a family doctor and former member of the Minnesota Senate, received an email from the Department of Health that seemed to be coaching him to use COVID-19 as a diagnosis in situations where he wouldn’t have previously used influenza or any other specific viral diagnosis without first testing for it. He said:4

 

“What struck me right away was I felt like I was being coached to go ahead and use COVID-19 without using the same standards of precision that I would for other things. If I’m going to make a diagnosis, I believe as a physician I have an obligation to use the tools available to me to nail it down with as much certainty as possible.

And it seemed to me that the Department of Health, and the link to this CDC document that said you could diagnose COVID-19 as a cause of death on a death certificate … those two documents, in tandem, went against everything that I had been taught or doing for the last 35 years.”

Even Dr. Ngozi Ezike, director of the Illinois Department of Health, is featured in the film stating that even if you died of a clear alternate cause, if you had COVID-19 at the same time, it would still be listed as a COVID death. “Everyone who is listed as a COVID death, doesn’t mean that was the cause of the death,” she says.5

In January 2020, the PCR test for COVID-19 came out, which allowed health officials to define COVID-19 “cases.” If the test was positive, it counted as a case — it didn’t matter if you have symptoms or not. Reiner Fuellmich, global fraud attorney, founder of the Corona Investigative Committee, pointed out, “It’s never, in the history of mankind, in the history of medicine, there’s never been testing of healthy people.”6

Yeadon agrees that mass testing of people with no symptoms has no scientific basis. Rather, he says, “It’s just a way to frighten people.”7 The rising “cases,” based on PCR testing, is what built the crisis. But counting cases was only measuring the activity of testing; the more that testing occurred, the more cases that were found.

‘Fear Everyone’ Became the Message

June 8, 2020, WHO director general Tedros Adhanom Ghebreyesus announced that asymptomatic people could transmit COVID-19. That same day, Maria Van Kerkhove, WHO technical lead for the COVID-19 pandemic, made it very clear that people who have COVID-19 without any symptoms “rarely” transmit the disease to others. In a dramatic about-face, WHO then backtracked on the statement just one day later.8

In the days that followed, media and health officials ramped up fear by claiming that you could be sickened by virtually anyone, even when they appeared to be healthy. “This idea that … you can be ill even though you have no symptoms and you can be a … virus threat to someone else even though you have no symptoms, that’s also invented in 2020,” Yeadon says.9

Alexandra Henrion-Caude, geneticist, former director of research with the French National Institute of Health, is among those who have noticed something off from the start. “I was very puzzled since the very beginning … I was alert to the fact that what we were living was not quite right.10

She notes that the notion of asymptomatic spread is terrifying because it turns virtually anyone you meet or encounter on the street into the enemy, because they could be exposing you to SARS-CoV-2. “This is actually terrible because it denies the capacity of a person to be a healthy person. Because if asymptomatic [spread] exists, then who is healthy? No one.”

What’s more, the “proof” of asymptomatic spread is flawed and fraudulent. The New England Journal of Medicine published an article suggesting the transmission of COVID-19 is possible from an asymptomatic carrier in January 2020.11

It was based on a 33-year-old businessman who had met with his business partner from Shanghai, then developed a fever and productive cough. The next evening, he felt better and went back to work January 27.

The writers reported the partner had been “well with no signs or symptoms of infection, but had become ill on her flight back to China, where she tested positive for 2019-nCoV on January 26.” From this case study, they theorized the virus could be transmitted from asymptomatic carriers. An important point was left out, which is that the researchers did not speak with the partner from Shanghai before publication.

However, Germany’s public health agency, the Robert Koch Institute (RKI), did speak with the woman on the phone, and she reported she did have symptoms while in Germany.12 So she was not asymptomatic after all.

In a State of Incoherence, People Crave Normalcy

The pandemic has twisted reality, leaving the public in a mental fog. “You’re regularly pledging obedience to things which are not logical,” Catherine Austin-Fitts, assistant secretary, Bush Sr. administration and investment adviser with Solari, Inc., says.13 WHO has changed definitions of herd immunity and pandemic, literally altering reality, and this is just one example.

Censorship and campaigns to discredit those who speak out against the narrative are additional control mechanisms that distort the truth. Bishop Schneider of Kazakhstan says the pandemic measures are very similar to Soviet times where he lived, in that there was only one narrative, and if you said there was another meaning, you were declared an enemy.

“When you had another opinion, they said, ‘You are a conspiracy group. You have a conspiracy theory. You have hate speech. This expression, hate speech, came from the communists.14 It’s psychological manipulation, based on fear, which makes people act totally irrational. The artificially imposed state of incoherence was even described by Austin-Fitts as a torture tactic, designed to get people to submit to vaccine passports and COVID-19 shots:15

“Human beings crave coherence. And so if you can put them in a state of incoherence they will literally do anything they can to get back to coherence. It’s a typical torture tactic. ‘If you just do what I want, I will allow you to go back to a state of coherence.’ So, if you just accept the [vaccine] passports, you’ll be free. Or if you get the vaccination, you’ll just be free.”

Further, by declaring small businesses as “nonessential” during lockdowns, they get shut down, while Amazon, Walmart and other big box stores can take over their market share. A major transfer of wealth occurred away from small family-owned businesses to very large, publicly owned businesses that benefited from the digital economy. In the meantime, Austin-Fitts explains:16

“The people on Main St. have to keep paying off their credit cards or their mortgage, so they’re in a debt trap and they’re desperate to get cashflow to cover their debts and expenses.

In the meantime, you have the Federal Reserve institute a form of quantitative easing where they’re buying corporate bonds, and the guys who are taking up the market share can basically finance — or their banks can — at 0% to 1%, when everyone on Main St. is paying 16% to 17% to their credit cards, without income.

So basically now you’ve got them over a barrel and you can take away their market share, and generally they can’t afford to do what they say because they’re too busy trying to find money to feed their kids.”

New Control Systems Are Being Engineered

If a few people want to control many, how can you get the sheep into the slaughterhouse without them realizing and resisting? “The perfect thing,” Austin-Fitts says, is invisible enemies, like viruses.17 This ramps up fear so the public believes they need the government to protect them. Another effective tactic is “divide and conquer,” and the media plays an important role in this, dividing people over shots and masks, for instance.

“What COVID-19 is,” Austin-Fitts explains, “is the institution of controls necessary to convert the planet from the democratic process to technocracy. So what we’re watching is a change in control and an engineering of new control systems. So think of this as a coup d’état. It’s much more like a coup d’état than a virus.”18

Dr. Wolfgang Wodarg, a former public health official and member of German parliament, agrees, stating that pandemic responses have “nothing to do with hygiene. It has to do with criminology.”19 The global injection campaign is another form of control, one that’s forcing the public to receive experimental shots.

Many of the experts in the film bring up the Nuremberg Code, which spells out a set of research ethics principles for human experimentation. This set of principles was developed to ensure the medical horrors discovered during the Nuremberg trials at the end of World War II would never take place again.

But in the current climate of extreme censorship, people are not being informed about the full risks of the shots — which are only beginning to be uncovered. People are being forced into the shots due to mandates and loss of jobs and personal freedoms, like the ability to travel freely and attend business and social events.

In the End, Truth Will Win

A revolution is occurring, and the experts are hopeful that people will awaken to common sense and resist the totalitarian control that is threatening to take over the globe. Instead, society can be regenerated if people come together and fight back against the encroachment on our liberties.

Civil disobedience, boycotting businesses that are requiring vaccine passports, participating in rallies and fighting illegal mandates in court are ways that everyone can get involved in protecting freedom. “If they want to make us a machine, if they want to make us slaves, we say no,” Wodarg says. “… We don’t need you anymore, we are many … we don’t have to be afraid of any pandemic.”20

Originally published by Mercola.com March 12, 2022

Sources and References

Views expressed in this article are the opinions of the author and do not necessarily reflect the views of The Epoch Times.

https://www.theepochtimes.com/banned-film-exposes-the-real-reason-for-the-covid-pandemic_4333569.html?utm_source=Morningbrief&utm_campaign=mb-2022-03-13&utm_medium=email&est=IlTVj14NYiYbO7BMHbqNL4bZiGV2HXiZSbbOQk4Yk0n6w7UMxMG+YP+dIvOAqw==

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Wife of Jan. 6 Prisoner: ‘We’re Being Targeted,’ It’s All About ‘Revenge’

The Epoch Times, 3/11/2022   By Patricia Tolson

The events of Jan. 6, 2021, at the United States Capitol have been described by some as an attempted “coup,” “domestic terrorism,” and a “deadly capitol insurrection.” But the jailed participants, and their friends and family, are convinced Jan. 6 participants are being targeted and threatened because of their support for former President Donald Trump.

“I know they are definitely being targeted, especially in the jail, and us as a family,” said Angel Harrelson, whose husband, Kenneth Harrelson, is in jail on charges of sedition and conspiracy related to his presence at the Capitol on Jan. 6.

Angel Harrelson of Titusville, Florida, told The Epoch Times her husband has received death threats in jail and that she and her family have been targeted and harassed by the media. She said her husband also received a postcard in jail that included the family’s home address.

“They’ve threatened his whole family and they’re allowing those cards to get through over there,” she said.

About 700 people have been charged in connection to Jan. 6, and dozens have been sentenced to jail time, house arrest, and probation. More than 500 cases against Jan. 6 defendants remain open, The Washington Post reported in January.

In July 2021, House Speaker Nancy Pelosi (D-Calif.) formed the Select Committee to Investigate the January 6th Attack on the United States Capitol, but only two Republicans—Reps. Liz Cheney of Wyoming and Adam Kinzinger of Illinois—agreed to participate after Pelosi rejected candidates recommended by House Minority Leader Kevin McCarthy (R-Calif.).

Republicans have criticized the committee, stating the investigation is politically driven.

Despite claims to the contrary by several politicians and media figures, the FBI found no evidence that the breach of the Capitol was a coordinated attack, Reuters reported.

Angel and Kenneth Harrelson .
Angel and Kenneth Harrelson in the parking lot of SpaceX in Cape Canaveral Air Force Base in Florida just before a rocket launch in July 2019. (Courtesy of Angel Harrelson)

Kenneth Harrelson, 41, is a U.S. Army veteran. His wife said he traveled to Washington on Jan. 6 to protect Trump supporters from Antifa, a violent left-wing activist group that often disrupts conservative events.

Kenneth and Angel Harrelson have four children, including an 18-year-old son who will be graduating this year. He enlisted in the Army and will leave for boot camp a month after graduation. They also have a 15-year-old daughter who is mildly autistic and suffering terribly in her father’s absence, Harrelson said.

“She’s a daddy’s girl,” she said.

Angel Harrison said her husband and other Jan. 6 defendants are served rotten food, and that it’s up to family members to raise money for the defendants’ commissary accounts.

"Political Prisoner of War" t-Shirt from online store created by Angel Harrelson to raise money to buy her husband's food at the jail commissary.
“Political Prisoner of War” T-Shirt from an online store created by Angel Harrelson to raise money to buy her husband’s food at the jail commissary. (Courtesy of Angel Harrelson)

“We spend about $125 at the commissary per week, and care packages cost about $125 per month,” she said. She has set up a GiveSendGo account to help cover the continued costs, as well as an online store, selling products in support of those being persecuted as “Political Prisoners of War (PPOWs).”

Angel Harrelson said she hasn’t seen her husband since he went to jail a year ago, and that he’s become depressed. She said prosecutors are angry that he rejected a plea deal.

Kenneth Harrelson was first charged with obstruction, then conspiracy and sedition, his wife said.

Angel Harrelson also said her husband is accused of obstructing police officers by surrounding Capitol Police Officer Harry Dunn, but Harrelson said the protestors were protecting Dunn from rioters who had become violent.

Dunn is the officer who made unsubstantiated claims that the Jan. 6 protesters used a racial slur against him.

Prosecutors argue Harrelson was a leader for the Oath Keepers, with access to high-powered firearms. They allege Harrelson is present in photos captured at a Comfort Inn outside Washington, and that he’s seen in photos rolling a cart down the hallway after a riot. Authorities insist there is at least one rifle case on the cart.

Brad Geyer, attorney for January 6 defendant, Kenneth Harrelson.
Brad Geyer, attorney for January 6 defendant, Kenneth Harrelson. (Courtesy of Brad Geyer)

Brad Geyer, attorney for Kenneth Harrelson, told The Epoch Times there were no unlawful firearms involved in the Jan. 6 events.

According to Geyer, the Oath Keepers were there in an official capacity to protect “VIPs” who were speaking during different events during the rally, and “it was standard operating procedure for the Oath Keepers” to “provide a strong defense” in that environment, he said.

Geyer insists the Oath Keepers were never in an altercation with Capitol Police, and that the group’s members kept their legal weapons in Virginia because firearms are not allowed in Washington.

Harrelson is also accused of searching for Pelosi during the breach and engaging in text messages threatening the House speaker’s life. Geyer said Harrelson did not participate in those messages, which were part of a group chat, and that his phone wasn’t working while he was inside the Capitol Building.

“There was some kind of jamming going on, which makes it difficult for people to communicate with each other,” Geyer said. “If there was something bad going on, people couldn’t warn others to stay away. I don’t think that was a mistake.”

Geyer also noted video showing Capitol Police moving barricades and waving people toward the Capitol Building. Another video shows police holding doors open while protesters file peacefully inside. A third video shows police standing back to allow an orderly group of protesters to pass by peacefully while one officer is seen waving the protesters along, contradicting reports that the crowd forced their way into the building.

Epoch Times Photo
Protesters are seen taking pictures inside the U.S. Capitol in Washington on Jan. 6, 2021. (Saul Loeb/AFP via Getty Images)

“There was no breach,” Geyer said, noting that prosecutors are fond of using that word. “No breach. Opening the door from the inside and inviting them in makes them invitees.”

Geyer said he will try to identify the police who ushered Harrelson up the steps and held the doors open to invite him inside.

If Kenneth Harrelson is convicted, his wife said the family will lose the veteran’s benefits they rely on for their house payment, car payment, and daily needs.

She said she’s always looked up to the police and trusted the government to find the truth about the situation, but now, she said she feels betrayed.

“I’ve known police officers all my life and a few are my best friends,” she said. “But how am I supposed to trust any of them now when they lie? I know my husband is innocent.”

Geyer agreed and said Kenneth Harrelson is “totally innocent.”

“I assumed that on some level, there would be some level of guilt, that you would be able to find something that he did,” Geyer said. “But his level of innocence is so overwhelming, it was a wake-up call for me.”

Geyer said the fallout from Jan. 6 has led to “a strange, mass psychosis event” surrounding defendants, and that the federal government maintains the façade of the Jan. 6 investigation by demonizing Harrelson and other defendants so they appear dangerous.

“He poses no threat of flight, and any suggestion to the contrary is concocted or made up, but they’re never going to let him out,” Geyer said.

https://www.theepochtimes.com/wife-of-jan-6-prisoner-were-being-targeted-its-all-about-revenge_4329840.html?utm_source=News&utm_campaign=breaking-2022-03-11-3&utm_medium=email&est=Vzjed7fW1YIClmVLbGBY+OYzWoPwdxV7rY5Co2QoEdeU9AOt9UVcjbepqXDFnQ==

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On the Cusp of an Economic Singularity – Doomberg

This is where the neo-liberals wanted to, and have, taken the West. They are in control. They take what they want; there is no rule of law. If you don’t “toe the line” you end up in a ‘black hole’ and there is little you can do. mrossol

On Substack: 3/4/2022

One mustn’t look at the abyss, because there is at the bottom an inexpressible charm which attracts us.” – Gustave Flaubert

In 1988, Stephen Hawking published one of the best-selling science books of all time. In A Brief History of Time, Hawking made the impossibly complex topics of astronomy and modern physics accessible to a lay audience, inspiring countless young students (and at least one green chicken) to pursue a career in the sciences. It is estimated that the book has sold an incredible 25 million copies worldwide.

A Brief History of Time | photo credit: BBC

In Chapter 3 of the book, Hawking introduces the reader to the Big Bang Theory and the concept of a gravitational singularity, which Wikipedia describes as “a condition in which gravity is so intense that spacetime itself breaks down catastrophically.” Essentially, since the laws of physics are eviscerated at a singularity, what happened before it is both irrelevant and unknowable, and one could consider such an event as having reset the universe’s clock. Here’s how Hawking describes it in his book (emphasis added throughout):

This means that even if there were events before the big bang, one could not use them to determine what would happen afterward, because predictability would break down at the big bang. Correspondingly, if, as is the case, we know only what has happened since the big bang, we could not determine what happened beforehand. As far as we are concerned, events before the big bang can have no consequences, so they should not form part of a scientific model of the universe. We should therefore cut them out of the model and say that time had a beginning at the big bang. Many people do not like the idea that time has a beginning, probably because it smacks of divine intervention.

The simple truth of a singularity applies whether it occurred in the past or will in the future: what transpires on the other side is unknowable from here.

Given the horrific and still-unfolding events of Vladimir Putin’s invasion of Ukraine and the West’s collective response to it, one can’t help but wonder whether we are on the cusp of an economic singularity in which the laws and bedrock beliefs that formed the foundation of international economic order for decades break down. The consequences are similarly unknowable, but we suspect a great reset may indeed be upon us. Even if a ceasefire is announced moments after we publish this piece, shocking damage to the global economic system has undoubtedly already been done and certain genies won’t easily be put back into their bottles.

Before proceeding, we should state clearly that what follows is not a critique of the Western response to the invasion but rather an assessment of the potential first- and second-order consequences of these historic moves, as well as speculation on where some of the harshest economic crises might manifest in the near future. While we join in the hope that these measures achieve their desired direct effect, there’s no denying these are truly unprecedented times.

The most stunning move by the US and its allies was cutting off the Russian central bank’s access to most of its $630 billion of foreign reserves. Without access, one wonders if these funds are really “its” reserves at all? What is ownership without access? No matter how justified that move might seem today, there’s no escaping that this action will reverberate for years to come. In a blunt opinion piece in the Wall Street Journal titled “If Russian Currency Reserves Aren’t Really Money, the World Is in for a Shock,” reporter Jon Sindreu had this to say about how central banks everywhere must now view their reserves:

Many economists have long equated this money to savings in a piggy bank, which in turn correspond to investments made abroad in the real economy. Recent events highlight the error in this thinking: Barring gold, these assets are someone else’s liability—someone who can just decide they are worth nothing. Last year, the IMF suspended Taliban-controlled Afghanistan’s access to funds and SDR. Sanctions on Iran have confirmed that holding reserves offshore doesn’t stop the U.S. Treasury from taking action. As New England Law Professor Christine Abely points out, the 2017 settlement with Singapore’s CSE TransTel shows that the mere use of the dollar abroad can violate sanctions on the premise that some payment clearing ultimately happens on U.S. soil.

Photo credit: Bloomberg

In for a shock, indeed. In essence, Sindreu’s piece argues that this move substantially increases the risk that the US dollar loses its privileged status as the global reserve currency and, at a minimum, likely ensures a polarization of the global economy into at least two camps – the West in one and Russia/China/Iran/Saudi Arabia plus other targeted or aligned countries in the other. If $20-30 trillion or more of global GDP spurns the preexisting reserve currency, is it still the reserve currency? If reserves can be negated overnight, are they even reserves? How many other countries must hedge against the possibility of similar sanctions? Should we add India to the list?

The Biden administration is weighing whether to impose sanctions against India over its stockpile of and reliance on Russian military equipment as part of the wide-ranging consequences the West is seeking to impose on Moscow over its invasion of Ukraine. 

Donald Lu, the assistant secretary of State for South Asian affairs, on Thursday told lawmakers in a hearing that the administration is weighing how threatening India’s historically close military relationship with Russia is to U.S. security.”

Another eyebrow-raising development is the US Department of Justice’s establishment of the ominously-named Task Force KleptoCapture, which has the stated intent of seizing (not freezing) the assets of Russian oligarchs. Here’s how the New York Times describes it:

The creation of the task force reflects the harsh scrutiny cast on Russian oligarchs, many of whom built their fortunes because of their ties to Mr. Putin. Even though they may not be directly involved in Russia’s invasion of Ukraine, they enable Mr. Putin by helping him conceal his own assets and remain in power.

Russia’s oligarchs have invested their fortunes in assets around the world, and their ties to Mr. Putin have helped them gain influence and connections in the worlds of fine art, real estate, Wall Street and Silicon Valley.

Oligarch’s not-yacht | photo credit: Forbes

We are the first to admit that “Russian oligarch” is a less sympathetic faction than “Canadian trucker,” and perpetrating a war on another sovereign nation is way more serious than honking horns in downtown Ottawa, but many of the same questions we raised about the consequences of Justin Trudeau’s impulses seem apropos here. Who gets to define oligarch? What qualifies as enabling? Do the accused have any recourse? If assets in the West are subject to swift confiscation without due process for even indirectly enabling a currently unpopular-with-us national political leader – no matter how justified that unpopularity might be – what sane foreign asset owner wouldn’t at least consider liquidating assets now and onshoring what wealth they can preserve? Have we thought through the dominos that fall by fundamentally rewriting property laws?

Further down in the same New York Times article, we find another interesting passage. We’ve long argued that a crackdown on cryptocurrencies is imminent. Will the US use the Russian invasion of Ukraine as a pretext for doing so? It sure seems like it:

The task force will target people and companies that are trying to evade anti-money laundering laws, hide their identities from financial institutions and use cryptocurrencies to evade sanctions and launder money. The Justice Department said that it would use civil and criminal asset forfeiture to seize assets belonging to people subject to sanctions.

The department said that its work would complement that of a trans-Atlantic task force announced this past weekend to identify and seize the assets of penalized Russian individuals and companies around the world.

Yet another meaningful development is the move by multinational corporations to self-sanction all aspects of their business activity tied to Russia, undoubtedly motivated by the disturbing images coming out of Ukraine and pressured by their stakeholders to do something about it. This is not the first time corporations have been called to action after certain political events – Western governments have a long history of trying to implement controversial policies by leaning on business leaders to do their dirty work for them – but these recent developments likely cause concern even among Western leaders. Perhaps naïvely, the US and its NATO allies specifically tried to carve out Russian oil and gas from the reach of sanctions, recognizing our critical need for these essential supplies (a weakness we’ve been writing about for many months). But as the Financial Times describes in a recent report, if the zeitgeist uniformly labels an entity toxic – even an entire G20 country – there can be no carve-outs:

In reality, however, many western banks, refineries and shipowners are in effect ‘self-sanctioning’ — behaving as if Russian oil has already been placed under sanctions. ‘Russia’s oil has effectively become toxic,’ said one banker.

Some of the biggest buyers of Russian crude have cancelled shipments and orders as companies from banks to insurers and shippers retreat from Russian business.

Roughly 70 per cent of Russian crude was ‘struggling to find buyers,’ according to consultancy Energy Aspects. As proof, Russia’s flagship Urals crude, a staple for refiners in north-west Europe and the Mediterranean, was quoted at a record discount of more than $18 a barrel on Wednesday.

Here are just some of the potentially catastrophic economic consequences to ponder if these events continue to snowball down a steepening slope. The obvious place to start is in the energy sector, where European natural gas prices have been trading like a crypto scam coin, rising and plunging by unthinkable amounts on a daily basis. The economic impact of both the elevated price and the volatility of energy on Europe’s manufacturing sector will be revealed in the coming weeks and months – we suspect the results will stun many.

Similarly, Russia and Ukraine are among the most prolific producers and exporters of critical foodstuffs in the world, and prices of agricultural goods are flashing red. In a piece we wrote all the way back in October of last year called Starvation Diet, we predicted a global mass starvation event was nearly inevitable, and that was before war broke out in Ukraine. Here’s how the piece opened:

We are on the cusp of a significant mass starvation event of our own making. Soon, tens of millions of the world’s most impoverished people will die from an inability to feed themselves, while many of those comfortably getting by now – especially in the Western World – are in for a shock.

Unsurprisingly, wheat has traded limit up for several days in a row and prices are reaching levels that condemn vast swaths of the global population to the fate we reluctantly described above. Food inflation is the catalyst for many popular uprisings, and the path from empty shelves to the guillotine has historically been a direct one. Now consider further that the West has outsourced the production of energy and critical mining materials to impoverished countries. What happens when those governments get overthrown and the production assets get nationalized?

There are countless other alarming consequences which we could document here – ahem, Russia produces 40% of global Palladium supplies and, ahem, Ukraine is responsible for the majority of global Neon gas exports (critical for the production of lasers used to make microchips, which are already in chronically short supply) – but even we are losing the capacity to ponder the totality of the economic doom that awaits.

Recent statements by US political leaders don’t inspire much confidence in our ability to navigate this crisis without substantial further economic and political escalation. In a single 24-hour period, House Speaker Nancy Pelosi called for a ban on Russian oil imports while simultaneously stating her opposition to the development of US oil to replace them. Meanwhile, Republican Senator Lindsay Graham went on live television and flippantly called for the assassination of the President of Russia. To drive his reckless point home, he then took to Twitter and amplified his message:

A big bang is coming. Brace for impact.

Need a pick-me-up after the Doom? Relieve some tension (and help us a TON) by pressing the LIKE button!

https://doomberg.substack.com/p/on-the-cusp-of-an-economic-singularity?r=6wm3s&s=r&utm_campaign=post&utm_medium=email

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How Western elites exploit Ukraine – UnHerd

I don’t really care “who’s side you’re on”. The point of this piece is to have you consider why are the “powers that be” so interested and vested in controlling the narrative. They allow for little or no alternative views. If you didn’t see it in the last two years around COVID-19, then you likely will not see it with respect to the Russian/Ukrainian conflict either. mrossol

UnHerd, 3/3/2022 by Arta Moeini

The war in Ukraine poses a palpable threat to Western democracies, but this has little to do with Russia posing an inherent strategic threat to the United States or its European allies. No — more so than the Russian state, the threat to the West comes from within, a consequence of our congealing perceptions towards the conflict.

Bombs are not raining down on our cities; instead, what we are experiencing is the psychological weaponisation of war — and its exploitation as a tool of indoctrination and statecraft in the hands of the establishment.

The Ukraine crisis is undoubtedly a tragedy, but it is merely the latest in a series of geopolitical events stretching back at least 20 years in which the media coverage has been biased, one-sided, and ideological. All of these instances — Iraq, Libya, Syria, and the Afghanistan Withdrawal — were riddled with “structural information traps” that we ignored at our peril.

 

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With each of these conflicts, the coverage gets worse, and the traps become ever more luring and incendiary. In each case, a narrative is constructed and transposed over the reporting, reinforced by sensationalist imagery that could rationalise an intervention and perhaps military action. But none compares to Ukraine. Here, we have witnessed the media of the Free World disseminating dishonest or otherwise uncritical coverage, fake news, Ukrainian disinformation, and propaganda aimed at conditioning the public to internalise the establishment’s Manichean narrative of a deranged madman’s random war of aggression.

Not only has the Ukraine coverage been highly charged, morally self-righteous, and plainly political, it actively demands a collective suspension of disbelief as it cultivates and redirects a natural reaction of sympathy felt by all into a moral outrage that insists on certain retaliation. Some, such as the former US ambassador to Russia Michael McFaul, have irresponsibly vilified the entire Russian population. Others, such as The Atlantic’s Anne Applebaum, have begun to senselessly demonise prescient realist American academics for daring to shed light on Russia’s basic national security interests and the possibility of a confrontation if they go unrecognised.

So far as the Western legacy media is concerned, we really do live in the post-historical age Francis Fukuyama triumphantly proclaimed in 1989, with liberal internationalism the only acceptable paradigm through which to understand the world. Alternative views are now tantamount to championing tyranny. In each instance, the dictator comes to personify internationally Hegel’s thymotic, if savage, primitive man — the inhumane antithesis of the “last man” —  fighting maniacally against liberal democracy, the march of modernity, and progress itself. Assad, Ghaddafi, the Taliban, and Vladimir Putin all fit this archetype as reactionary actors par excellence necessitating a holy alliance to confront and civilise.

 
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Such a melioristic framing of international politics justifies and indeed privileges a Manichean narrative of good and evil. In this context, rationality itself is bound to the good, defined as effective conformity with liberal hegemony.

This is how the permanent members of the ruling class view the world. The former Director of National Intelligence James Clapper, for instance, has made the enlightening observation that the years-brewing war in Ukraine was a result of Putin simply becoming “unhinged”, suggesting he might be suffering from neurological problems. Not to be outdone, Condoleezza Rice, one of the architects of the Iraq War and the ill-advised 2008 Bucharest declaration (which affirmed Nato’s “open door” towards Ukraine and therefore helped to spark this most recent conflict), bemoaned Putin’s “delusional rendering of history” and “erratic” behaviour.

Perhaps, given the profound crisis of meaning in the West and the gap in solidarity and social cohesion, we should not be surprised. Living under the conditions of rootlessness, spiritual emptiness, and angst, every crisis is an opportunity for mythopoesis. Tragedy is reborn, and we are easily enthralled by the periodic cycles of worship and hero-making. Our faith in the cult of expertise, meanwhile, blinds and lulls us to the potential dangers of such black and white thinking.

As good Straussians, American neoconservatives were among the first to intuit this fact: that owing to disenchantment and the dissolution of our “sacred canopy”, the myth — or the Platonic “noble lie” — can be used to strengthen the Regime. Through their co-option, they would ensure the inherent power of the “noble lie” would be harnessed to regularly generate casus belli for global liberal imperialism. After all, what better unifying force than the “grand American project” of war to energise one’s desire for national greatness and the need for the regimentation of life in a disordered, chaotic Zeitgeist. Led by America, the grand mission of the Anglosphere would therefore have to be “to advance civilisation itself”. Not to mention, heroes also need villains, and it does help that in the Ukrainian archetype, ‘evil’ is not an intangible virus but can be personified onto an ‘other’ — in this case, Vladimir Putin.

This is the fake, performative, and internationalist nationalism of the American elite class: they use emotional triggers to rally the people behind the flag of the state in the name of lofty humanitarian causes which mask their own self-importance and narcissistic greatness. In fact, the systematic and periodic milking of tragedy to sow mass hysteria and manufacture support for the liberal imperium and its rulers has become the modus operandi in Washington. The consequence is not only further empowerment of the martial state, but also the enabling and even the ennobling of America’s war machine.

But so what? So what if our information ecosystem in the West is substantively flawed and prejudiced? Is this kind of systemic information bias, unbalanced coverage, and outright favouritism not endemic to all culture-complexes, prevalent also across state-run media in China, Iran, and Russia? The answer is certainly yes, but with an important qualification: the latter are not liberal democracies.

Some might say the foreign policy hawks have not learned from their catastrophic regime-change wars in the Middle East. But they have. They learned the importance of narrative control and information warfare targeting domestic audiences: consolidating the media, tightening their hold on information, marginalising the few investigative journalists that remain, and nullifying scepticism as examples of appeasement or Putinism. Undoubtedly, the situation seriously endangers civil liberties and freedom of thought in the Anglosphere, undermining the very foundation of Western democracy.

 
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But wedded to a disturbing, yet ascendant, neo-McCarthyism, the homogenisation of the Western media environment could ultimately prove more ominous than simple government censorship à la North Korea or Iran. At its core, the phenomenon aims to condition public opinion into “correct” acceptable speech patterns in the service of the “noble lie” — using the good heart of most ordinary citizens and their repulsion at human suffering as bait.

This noxious development, unless fully defanged and neutralised, could yet tear the very fabric of Western society, unleashing the dystopia of internalised totalitarianism, wherein the public-private boundaries disappear and citizens — even informed ones — can hardly distinguish between planted or socially-reinforced information and their own views. In such a world, the only choice is to virtue signal and self-censor.

Gone unchecked, it could amount to mass indoctrination around key national security questions and spell the end of democracy — in spirit if not procedurally. This is the ultimate fog of war.

Despite their litany of failures, the lesson drawn by the foreign policy establishment from their calamitous interventionism under the banner of democracy and freedom (“democratism“) was not to abandon their evangelical crusades for empire and to affirm restraint, moderation, and prudence. It was, instead, a desire not to be caught in the lie, as they were with their patently false claim about Iraq’s weapons of mass destruction (WMD). To achieve this, the military-industrial-congressional complex and the professional-managerial class that runs it had to dominate a new battlespace: information. Not for foreign audiences, in which Western intelligence has had a long track record, but to domesticate, intellectually sterilise, and effectively neutralise their own citizens.

To guarantee the continuation of its globalist misadventurism, the establishment had to control and limit the political discourse at home. It has done so largely in two ways. The first was to claim monopoly over ‘truth’, and to discredit anyone who might not go along with the endorsed narrative by doubting their patriotism and brandishing them as appeasers, apologists, and/or outright traitors. The second was to ensure a total consolidation of national security narratives — so that even when instances of falsehood and misinformation are discovered, this would not receive much exposure but be shunned to the darkest corners of the internet.

Any war is a tragedy. We should work to de-escalate and see it end in Ukraine. But there are always at least two sides to a conflict: two agendas, not counting the designs of external actors. War does not occur in a vacuum. It often betrays (and is the culmination of) a long history of grievances and distrust.

Having claimed over 14,000 lives since 2014, the conflict in Ukraine is not about Vladimir Putin and his character but realpolitik, national interest, and great power rivalry. Countries have genuine security interests, some of them existential. They have real red lines.

“No Russian leader could stand idly by,” Putin told William Burns, now the director of the CIA, and accept Nato membership for Ukraine, Georgia, or Belarus, or allow Western weapons systems into these countries. As one of American greatest strategists and the architect of “containment” against the Soviet Union, George Kennan’s reaction to the Clinton administration’s insistence on Nato’s enlargement is particularly telling: “I think the Russians will gradually react quite adversely and it will affect their policies. I think it is a tragic mistake. There was no reason for this whatsoever. No one was threatening anybody else. This expansion would make the founding fathers of this country turn over in their graves.”

 
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Almost 25 years on, such sober-minded analysis is increasingly rare. And this sidelining of neutral, dispassionate scrutiny in the Russo-Ukrainian War is particularly alarming because this is not America’s war. The North Atlantic has little vital geostrategic interest in Ukraine other than in trying to avoid a refugee or energy crisis. Yet many in Washington, London, or Brussels have goaded and encouraged, and are now revelling in, the conflict — convinced as they are that an extended quagmire there could become the kind of vulnerability for Russia that Afghanistan was for the Soviet Union, a malignant tumour metastasising to the whole of the Russian body politic and instigating regime change.

While diehards may desire a West-East clash packaged under the tired rubric of Democracy versus Autocracy to prove their machismo, the situation in Ukraine is boiling over — and it is still early days. Things are about to get far more dreadful. Ukraine is a small state neighbouring a great power, a historical buffer and bridge between Russia and the West. “To Russia, Ukraine can never be just a foreign country,” wrote Henry Kissinger in 2014. “Russian history began in what was called Kievan-Rus,”. The sooner we heed and accept this fact, the sooner we can sensibly gauge the situation as is and review our commitment critically.

Statesmanship is the art of not letting emotions drive policy. Sentimentality is the enemy of reason, all sense of proportion, and limits: in short, it kills realism and breeds wishful thinking. Such utopianism is senseless and dangerous: it will prolong the conflict and get lots of innocent civilians needlessly killed. Meanwhile, fomenting false hope in the public domain could further fan the flames of war, entangling Europe and the US in a confrontation with nuclear Russia — an Armageddon the tale of which we will likely not live to tell.

War is not sports-betting, where one can feel good about siding with the underdog from the comfort of a couch or a bar. It is geopolitics in its most visceral, existential form: wagers have real costs involving human lives, and they are settled only with power and political will.

The point is that this tragedy was entirely predictable and avoidable. We invited (if not compelled) conflict with our politics of intrigue and meddling in Eastern Europe, our disregard for Moscow’s security interests, and our moral grandstanding over items like Nato’s eastward expansion, Ukrainian neutrality, and demilitarisation. Any seasoned diplomat of the Cold War would be left utterly mystified. This was and remains political and strategic malpractice.

The question now is whether we want to put millions of Ukrainian lives in jeopardy simply to keep it as a Western Bulwark on Russia’s frontier and a dagger at Moscow’s throat. The Russo-Ukrainian War must be condemned and brought to an end using diplomacy, but the West must accept a degree of culpability for leading the Ukrainians “down the primrose path” and egging on their showdown with their giant neighbour to the east. Any attempt to escalate and prolong this conflict by giving false hope to the Ukrainian people with tough rhetoric, moralistic bluster, lethal arms, and economic sanctions, the brunt of which will be felt by civilians on both sides, is irresponsible and callous. It would only ensure more death and suffering.

 
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As former US Army Colonel Douglas Macgregor contended in a recent television interview: “I see no reason why we should fight with the Russians over something that they have been talking about for years, [and] we simply chose to ignore… We will not send our forces to fight, but we are urging Ukrainians to die pointlessly in a fight they can’t win. We’re going to create a far greater humanitarian crisis than anything you’ve ever seen if it doesn’t stop.” Only this time, our liberal conceit and messianic delusion could potentially spiral a regional conflict into a global maelstrom that would exterminate humanity in a nuclear apocalypse.

The road to hell, as the wise aphorism has it, is paved with good intentions. Unless we course-correct now, we could soon find ourselves in a Huxleyan Brave New World that exploits the illusion of freedom while normalising the sophistic manipulation of public discourse to manufacture consent around the establishment’s liberal internationalist foreign policy.

When all roads lead to interventionism and war, pause, think, and consider how we got to where we are. Ask yourself who designed this dystopian city of lies and to what purpose — before it is too late.

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