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ANTI-STATE • ANTI-WAR • PRO-MARKET
Updated: 2 hours 19 min ago

Hate Is a One-Way Street

12 hours 47 min ago

After the recent violence here in Virginia, Catholic bishops felt they had to do something. So naturally, in 24 hours, they managed to take both sides.

On the day of the Charlottesville conflict, bishops called for unity and prayer and condemned hatred. Almost immediately the flaks from their DC lobbying arm got to them with a strong message: “It sounds like you’re agreeing with Trump. That will get you nowhere.” So the next day they issued a new statement that added a condemnation of “racism, white supremacy and neo-Nazism.”

Of course, these are easy targets. But what about the Left-wing violence perpetrated by Antifa and hundreds of armed, masked anarchists?

Well, in those 24 hours, the usual suspects had directed a barrage of bombast at Trump for blaming both sides.  And while the bishops undoubtedly oppose Antifa’s violence, they also happen to be fighting their own battle with Trump, and they desperately need the support of those very same usual suspects to help them win it.

Time to buy old US gold coins

Wait – the bishops are fighting Trump? But hasn’t Trump reversed Obama policies (all of which the bishops also opposed) regarding religious liberty, the HHS mandate, UN abortion funding, Planned Parenthood funding, the Mexico City policy and “transgender” student regulations?

Yes, and bishops support Trump’s actions, because every one of them addresses a morally objective evil. But there are also political issues on which Catholic can disagree, and Trump has reversed Obama policies on several of them, including health care,   DACA, welfare spending,  Cuba Policy,  Global Warming the death penalty, the environment and sanctuary cities.

And on these policies, the bishops support Obama’s views on every one of them.

But the largest issue by far on the bishops’ anti-Trump agenda is immigration policy.

For years, the bishops’ highest priority has been to legalize amnesty for illegal aliens and welcome more of them. Since 2009, bishops celebrated Obama’s sanctuary cities, his unilateral DACA “Dreamer” declaration, and his virtual suspension of immigration law. The bishops’ welfare agencies – Catholic Charities USA and Catholic Relief Services – received generous federal funding that increased every year under Obama – and today they amount to little more than secular federal NGO’s with a “Catholic” label.

And that isn’t all. Under Obama, additional funding amounting to hundreds of millions of federal taxpayer dollars a year went to the bishops through various channels for services provided to refugees, illegal minors and aliens, and other immigrants (the bishops’ DC office will not reveal just how much federal funding they receive for those operations).

But then came 2016. Like virtually everyone else on the Left, the bishops fully expected Hillary Clinton to win. Undoubtedly that would have assured that their federal funding would continue.

Trump’s unexpected victory delivered a traumatic shock to the system that threatened the bishops’ entire welfare infrastructure. They quickly realized that, while they were quietly grateful for Trump’s pro-life policies, those policies brought the bishops no funding. The big money came in programs that the president was determined to reduce or eliminate.

Ever since Trump’s victory, the bishops waged a frantic campaign to keep the money flowing.

And then came Charlottesville. What to do?

Put yourself in their shoes. Regarding the funding for aliens and refugees, the bishops are literally on the ropes. While others in Washington might waffle on immigration, Trump is standing fast. If he succeeds, the bishops’ funding ends. If he fails, business as usual returns, and the bishops can breathe a sigh of relief. They can even be quietly grateful for his defense of religious liberty and the unborn.

But first, Trump must fail! So whatever role Antifa played in the violence, the Charlottesville tragedy gives new life to the bishops’ avowed efforts to weaken Trump’s immigration policies – because it weakens Trump himself.

And that’s the bishops’ prime mandate right now. So instead of calling for prayerful reconciliation of both sides, they joined the stampede.

Did they really have any choice?

Had the bishops condemned all the violent factions involved in Charlottesville, they would have invited the same foul barrage of invective that the Left leveled at Donald Trump. So they blinked.

Trump fought the jackals off, but frankly, Catholic bishops lack his mettle.

As one celebrated pastor put it, “at the end of the world, a huge thunderclap will be heard when bishops are reunited with their spines.”

And that hasn’t happened yet.

In fact, it’s getting worse. New York Cardinal Timothy Dolan readily admits that the sex-abuse and cover-up scandals fifteen years ago devastated the bishops’ credibility, and it shows. Moreover, key bishops have privately admitted that voluntary donations from the faithful plummeted after the scandals, making that federal funding all the more critical.

So there never really was an option. Agree with Trump – and the facts? The bishops would have wilted. They’d be branded as traitors. And like Lenin, the Left makes short work of traitors. After all, the Left never considered Trump as anything but an enemy, but – except for the life issues – the bishops have been their friend. And a friend who turns on you in a crisis quickly becomes your worst enemy.

And this is a crisis.

Pity our bishops. What are they to do? They are good men. But they are not strong men. And, lest we forget, they need the money.

[This is the seventh in a series on the role of the Catholic Church in the decline and fall of the Republic Here are the first, the second, the third,  the fourth, the fifth, and the sixth. Follow these issues on Twitter @realchrismanion]

The post Hate Is a One-Way Street appeared first on LewRockwell.

Risk On: War, Economy, Debt, Dollar

14 hours 39 min ago

Totally irresponsible policies by Governments and Central Banks have created the most dangerous situation that the world has ever experienced. Risk doesn’t arise quickly as the result of a single action or event. No, risk of the magnitude that the world is experiencing today is the result of many years or decades of economic mismanagement.

Cycles are normal in nature and in the world economy. And cycles that are the result of the laws of nature normally play out in an orderly fashion without extreme tops or bottoms. Just take the seasons, they go from summer to autumn, winter and spring with soft transitions that seldom involve drama or catastrophe. Economic cycles would be the same if they were allowed to happen naturally without the interference of governments. But power corrupts and throughout history leaders have always hung on to power by interfering with the normal business cycle. This involves anything from reducing the precious metals content of money from 100% to nothing, printing money, leveraging credit, manipulating interest rates, taking total taxes to 50%+ today from nothing 100 years ago, etc, etc.

GOVERNMENTS DOING GOD’S WORK

Governments will always fail when they believe that they are gods. But not only governments believe they perform godly tasks but also hubristic investment bankers like the ex-CEO of Goldman Sachs who proclaimed that the bank was doing God’s work. It must be remembered that Goldman, like most other banks, would have gone under if they and JP Morgan hadn’t instructed the Fed to save them by printing and guaranteeing $25 trillion in 2008. Or maybe that was God’s hand too?

We now have unmanageable risks at many levels – politically, geopolitically, economically and financially.

This is a RISK ON situation that is extremely dangerous and will have very grave consequences. There is one very small but important silver lining which I will return to later.

1. RISK ON – US POLITICAL SITUATION AND WAR

When there are numerable risks that can all cause the collapse of the world economy, they all have equal relevance. However, the political situation in the USA is very dangerous for the world. This the biggest economy in the world, albeit bankrupt with debt growing exponentially and real deficits every year since 1960. Before the dollar has collapsed, the US will still be seen as a powerful nation although a massive economic decline will soon weaken the dollar and the country, burdened by debt at all levels, government, state, and private.

What makes the US particularly dangerous today is that the President is a lame duck. Both political parties are working against him and are trying every trick in the book to get him impeached. The Elite or powers that be are obviously also doing what they can to outmanoeuvre Trump and make him ineffective. But Trump is a fighter and will not give up easily. As he is virtually paralysed when it comes to any political or economic decision, what remains is military actions or war. As commander in chief, he has the ultimate say in pressing the nuclear button. He, like most of us, understands the catastrophic consequences of nuclear war. And we are not talking about just the US and North Korea. We would see China, Russia and many other countries involved. Wars are often started by an impulsive and power-hungry leader, which we certainly have in Kim and Trump.

Real power in the US comes from major sectors such as defence, energy, big pharma and investment banks. Their “contributions” to virtually all politicians is where the real power lies. When a leader is under major political pressure on the home front, starting a war quickly diverts the attention from domestic problems. And Trump would of course get total support from the military since their whole raison d’étre is war.

For Trump, a war would mean that he takes total control and all domestic squabbling is forgotten. He would be the king war maker and the “saviour” of the US.

Except for all the extreme consequences of a nuclear war, there will of course be serious economic implications such as stock and bond market collapses, dollar fall etc. There would also be massive money printing.

Hopefully it won’t come to this and Kim and Trump will realise the global catastrophe nuclear war would involve. But the risk is extremely high.

2. RISK ON – GLOBAL STOCK MARKETS

Stock markets worldwide are all in bubble territory. With volatility at historical lows and valuation at historical highs, stock market investors are displaying a total disregard for risk and reason. No trees grow to heaven even if it looks like it right now. Yes, bubbles can grow even bigger like the Nasdaq in 1998-2000. But investors should not worry about missing the last few points on the way up when the subsequent fall is 80% as happened to the Nasdaq 2000-2.

Virtually every stock market around the world is vulnerable. Below are monthly charts of the Nasdaq, TSX – Canada Nifty- India and Dax- Germany. All are showing a similar picture. They are severely overextended and have made new highs with bearish divergence. This means that the new highs are not confirmed by momentum indicators which are showing weakness. Other technical indicators are confirming that we are seeing long term tops in all stock markets and that the next major move will be a vicious and sustained fall. Thus, stocks are very high-risk today medium to long term.

3. RISK ON – US DOLLAR, CURRENCIES

With the coming economic collapse, all currencies will decline to zero due to unlimited money printing. The US dollar is substantially overvalued and has been falling against all currencies since December 2016. The graph below shows the dollar index which is down 10% since December last year. The initial target is the 2007 low of 70 which is a 25% fall from here. Eventually the dollar will fall a lot further. But so will of course all currencies which so far have fallen 97-99% in the last 100 years. The final fall of 1-3% from here is likely to take place in the next five years. This will happen as a result of unlimited money printing, undertaken by central banks in a final attempt to save the financial system. This is sadly very likely to fail.

Read the Whole Article

The post Risk On: War, Economy, Debt, Dollar appeared first on LewRockwell.

Here Comes Cognitive Dissonance

14 hours 39 min ago

We ashen-souled columnists, the galley slaves of journalism, are accustomed to abuse from web louts, though it makes us see humanity as having the charm one associates with the underside of a theater seat. We bear up manfully under this, perhaps in the company of Mr. Daniels of Tennessee. To be fair, we get a modicum of civil and intelligent comment.

The third category we see is CDA: Cognitive Dissonance Avoidance. The majority of men cannot abide anything they do not already think and,  when asked questions they would rather not contemplate, probably lock themselves in the bathroom until the screen goes blank. Herewith some of the most studiously avoided q questions.

The Police:  A cop sees a man strike a woman in the head with a piece of pipe and grab her purse. He tries to arrest the perp, who resists. The criminal is 19, muscular, and  weighs 220. What should the cop do?

Web louts avoid the question because all available answers involve violence and the louts, who hate the police while knowing nothing about them,  cannot afford to concede that violence by police can ever be legitimate. If they did, then many cases of alleged brutality  would become legitimate. So they duck and dodge. Classic CDA.

Second question: The perp is big, stoked on PCP, has a length of pipe, and does not want to go to jail. He attacks the cop. What should the cop do when attacked with a deadly weapon?

Note to web louts only: Do not natter stupidly about cops are thugs, you don’t like cops, they are racists, Fred is a fascist, and all the other excretions of negligible minds. Answer the question.

Intelligent design. For those unfamiliar with thes particular circus, intelligent Design–ID among the cognoscenti–is the theory or, as many would have it, observation–that some biological structures cannot have evolved because they are irreducibly complex, and therefore must have been designed. This does not mean excessively complex, but that the structures in question have too many parts all of which would have to appear at once or the structure would not function, and that the parts by themselves would have no value in survival. This is furiously denied by the Darwin claque.

If irreducible complexity does not exist, then any organism can in principle be traced backward, evolutionary step by evolutionary step, to nonliving matter. In practice of course this is impossible with entire organisms. With simple processes it should be doable.

Consider protein synthesis. This is a comparatively simple, well understood.  Why is it not irreducibly complex? How can it be simplified to a preceding evolutionary form? Can we reduce the number of nucleotides per codon from three to two, allowing coding for at most sixteen aminos? Can the sugar be eliminated from nucleotides? The phosphate?  Surely simplifying an already simple process should be only an exercise for grad students. Otherwise it would seem irrem—No! No!

Immigration.The presence of any Latinos at all in America is strongly opposed by racialist groups such as the Alt-Right. These encourage the belief that Latinos are stupid, filthy, criminal, and parasitic, and seek to prevent immigration. There are forty million legal Latinos in the country, mostly citizens, who are not going to leave and cannot be deported. While it can certainly be argued that the country would be better off without them, they exist and will remain. Question for the Alt-Right:

What policy do you recommend toward American citizens of Latino descent?

Encourage assimilation? Discourage it? Poisoning? In any case, how?

Those opposed to immigration strenuously avoid the question because having a policy would concede the legitimacy, or at least permanence,  of Latino-Americans. This they cannot bring themselves to do. If they did, they would likewise concede the inevitability of  intermarriage. Eeeeeeek!

Personally I sympathize with white nationalists and think mass immigration should not have been permitted. But I also that that it was, and we have to deal with what is, not what we might like.

Illegal immigrants: The roughly twelve million illegals pose another problem. It is arithmetically very unlikely that a statistically important number of illegals will be deported or leave. If ten thousand a month were deported during Trump’s maximum possible reign, this would come to almost a million, eight percent of the illegals and substantially less than two percent of the Latino population. Question for white nationalists: What policy do you recommend toward those illegals who do not leave?

They duck and dodge on this question too because having a policy on remaining illegals–probably most of them–would be to admit that some will remain, which they will not. Questions consequent to the first would arise, such as do we amnesty them–the Alt-Right would rather take slit its throat–so they can get real jobs, buy houses, and so on, or keep them as a permanent underclass until their children, citizens, make the question noot?

Open borders: People in favor of mass immigration never put a number on what they want, without which they become moral poseurs and feel-good artists. There are probably 700 million Indians, at least 300 million Latin Americans, all of Haiti, 500 million Africans, and many hundreds of millions of Indonesians, Arabs, Afghans, Pakistanis, and so on who would like to come to America. Question for pro-immigrationists: Specifically, how many immigrants do you want to accept? What upper limit do you  want?

Plagiolepis alluaudi

Ants.  If you look at mammalian brains, or even reptilian ones, you see enough neurons to believe that they can manage the animal. People have about 1350 cc of brain, some whales 5400.

But consider the above ant. There is hardly any ant there. Most of what there is of the little beast consists of legs, exoskeleton, thorax and abdomen and so on. It has virtually no nervous tissue, distributed or otherwise.

Yet it effortlessly manages six legs over broken terrain (ask a robotics engineer how easy this is) operates digestive organs and such, knows how to forage for food, dig nests, care for queen and young, manage sensory organs and interact with other ants.

All of this is flat weird. Question: How can so very, very little “brain” control such complex behavior? What, as we would say in today’s digital world,is the storage mechanism? The programming language?

When I have asked this question, the response has been “Oh, Fred, ants use a different system.” That is the question, not the answer. What is the explanation, if one exists?

This question involves no web louts pr evasive politics, but there does seem to be a desire to avoid saying that there is something going on that we do not understand.

Affirmative action: This was originally sold as a temporary measure to give blacks who did not quite meet the qualifications for a job to to begin working, whereupon–so the theory went–they would study hard and catch up.  Critics argue that blacks aren’t catching up, and indeed cannot, and that affirmative action is just another entitlement giveaway to keep them from burning cities. . Proponents deny this. Question: When, specifically, should affirmative action be dropped, and how will we know when we get there?

There may be good answers to all of these questions. Specific, concrete, non-evsi have answers. I wouldlike to hear them.

The post Here Comes Cognitive Dissonance appeared first on LewRockwell.

You Might Be a Cheapskate

14 hours 39 min ago

Do you enjoy saving a buck more than most people?  Do you have a black belt in frugality? Around here, most of us consider “cheapskate” to be a positive word!

Here are 20 surefire signs that you are embracing your cheap side.  How many things on this list apply to you?

  1. You take it as a personal challenge to see how long you can go without spending money. The game is even better if you have a spouse or friend with whom you can compete.
  2. You don’t let food go to waste. You have an ice cream tub in your freezer nearly full of odd bits of leftovers, awaiting their reincarnation into “leftover casserole” or “leftover soup”.
  3. It’s physically impossible for you to drive past an interesting-looking garbage pile at the curb during somebody else’s spring cleaning frenzy, much to the dismay of your children. (Although there’s always that one kid who’s excited to dig through the pile with you!)
  4. Your first stop at the grocery store is the “last day of sale” rack in each department. When you get home with your stash, you immediately set to freezing, dehydrating, or canning your inexpensive score.
  5. Your kid looks at a necklace or pair of earrings at the “cool” store and scoffs, “We could make this.”  Then she puts it back and asks you to take her to the thrift store for items to disassemble for the supplies to make her own accessories.
  6. You don’t have cable. Your viewing, if you watch television at all, is done via an internet subscription service or even a rabbit ear antenna on top of the TV.
  7. A day of yard-saling is planned out like a military invasion: you have a Mapquest route of at least a half dozen sales, a thermos full of coffee, a wallet full of small bills, and a list including measurements of all empty spaces in your home that need to be filled, kitchen items you are seeking, books your daughter wants to read, and upcoming birthdays.  Your alarm is set the night before, a blueberry muffin is wrapped up and ready to go on the counter, and your comfy clothes are laid out.
  8. Before throwing anything in the garbage you take a few seconds to ponder how it might be reused. Then, you either compost it, put it aside for a re-purpose, or you turn it into a homemade “log”for your fire.
  9. If something breaks, you try to fix it. If it must be replaced or purchased, you always look for a used version first before doling out the money for a new one.
  10. You know how to darn socks….and you do it.
  11. You have a special super-skinny rubber spatula earmarked just for getting the very last bit of whatever out of jars and bottles in the kitchen.
  12. You wash and re-use sandwich baggies, and you’ve even rigged up a little drying rack for them beside your sink.
  13. You are outraged at the idea of spending $18 on a jug of laundry detergent because you could make a year’s supply for that amount of money.
  14. You have recently advised your child to cut off that teeny bit of mold on the brick of cheese because the other side is just fine.
  15. You don’t carve the Jack-o-Lanterns until the day before Halloween so that you can cook, puree, and can the pumpkin the day after Halloween.
  16. You have (and use) a clothesline.  Year round. In fact, you know from experience that laundry dries even if it freezes first.
  17. You know how to repair a plastic clothes hamper by “welding it” with a bread tag and a hot glue gun.
  18. The dish soap beside your sink is actually 50% dish soap and 50% water.
  19. You can’t really understand how other moms spend hundreds of dollars on scrapbooking supplies, when your scrapbooks filled with reclaimed do-dads look just as awesome for mere pennies.
  20. The concept of spending $25 dollars or more to get your nails done is as foreign to you as the concept of riding an ostrich around your yard.

Does the list above make you say, “It’s like Daisy knows me!!!”? What are some other signs that you might be a cheapskate? We’ll do a reader’s choice version soon!

Reprinted with permission from The Organic Prepper.

The post You Might Be a Cheapskate appeared first on LewRockwell.

Government, the AMA, and Med Schools

14 hours 39 min ago

In the introduction to a talk I gave at the Mises Institute this year, I noted how, in the early part of the twentieth century, a convergence of interests between social progressivists and ideological empiricists led to the publication of the Flexner Report and the subsequent enactment of licensing laws.

That historical context is further treated in an outstanding article by Alfred Tauber, who was professor of medicine and philosophy at Boston University School of Medicine.

In “The Two Faces of Medical Education: Flexner and Osler Revisited,” Tauber contrasts the radically different views these two men held about the ethos of medicine and the proper approach to medical education. It is ironic that the victorious position would be the one pushed by Flexner who, as Murray Rothbard put it, was “an unemployed former owner of a prep school in Kentucky … sporting neither a medical degree nor any other advanced degree.”

Tauber perfectly captures the aim of Flexner:

Flexner had another agenda than simply eliminating substandard institutions. The registration of medical schools with the Association of American Medical Colleges, the imposition of state licensing linked to such accreditation, the development of a model medical school at Johns Hopkins, and finally the effective use of philanthropic foundation support (e.g., Rockefeller, Carnegie) helped mould American medical standards closely to those advocated by Flexner. The 20th century doctor was to be an active and skeptical medical scientist.

He offers the following quotes from the report, documenting the conflation of medicine and science: “medicine is part and parcel of modern science. The human body belongs to the animal world.” (p. 53) “Is there any logical incompatibility between the science and the practice of medicine?” (p. 54) “Investigation and practice are thus one in spirit, method, and object.” (p. 56) Flexner, vaunting the effect of a strictly scientific education, also remarked that:

The student who has been successfully trained to regard the body as an infinitely complex machine learns to doubt his capacity to mend it summarily.

Despite having no medical degree, Flexner was not completely disconnected from the medical world. In fact, his brother was Simon Flexner, a microbiologist (of Shigella Flexneri fame), who was then director of the Rockefeller Institute for Medical Research. Simon Flexner had co-authored a book with William Welch, the founder of the Johns Hopkins medical school, and Welch had built the Johns Hopkins curriculum on a German model of medical education that was strongly reductionist in emphasis (in reaction to a then-prevalent current of German medical idealism). Abraham Flexner himself had been a student at Johns Hopkins University and, in his report, proposed a model for medical education based on the one instituted by Welch.

Of course, we should not neglect the role and interests of the AMA which had been pining for fifty years to get licensing laws passed and impose trade restrictions favorable to its members. Ronald Hamowy has well documented that, in its early history, the AMA had little concern for scientific medicine: “Blood letting and blistering, and the administration of massive doses of compounds of mercury, antimony, and other mineral poisons as purgatives and emetics, followed by arsenical compounds thought to act as tonics,” were standard care for the allopaths.

By the turn of the twentieth century, however, the organization saw the political advantage of touting itself as a promoter of a scientific education. It provided much of the background material upon which Flexner built his report and, of course, became one of the biggest benefactors of the licensing laws that were passed soon afterward. From then on, the AMA would largely control medical school accreditation, which would become bureaucratized and sclerotic. It also became the officially recognized entity authorized to speak on behalf of all physicians.

In contrast, “Welch’s position was rigorously opposed in his very institution by William Osler, who idealized the opposite pole of medicine’s foundation: the crucial vector was from bedside to the laboratory.” Likewise, “Francis Peabody, Chairman of the Harvard Medical Service at the Boston City Hospital, warned ‘the laboratory never can become and never should become the predominating factor in the practice of medicine.’”

Tauber continues: “The Flexner Report, with its sole reliance on a reductionist science to serve as an ideal for medicine, essentially omits the dynamic, or sociological encounter between patient and physician.”

But, ultimately, the AMA-Welch-Flexner-Carnegie model prevailed over the Osler-Peabody view. And the ensuing bureaucratic machinery wouldn’t cope with the massive increase in scientific knowledge that has occurred since the Flexner reforms fossilized medical education into following a standardized format.

Isn’t it astonishing that the medical school curriculum structure has remain unchanged for more than a hundred years? And, if we omit “the dynamic, sociological encounter between patient and physician,” is it any wonder a healthcare crisis would emerge?

Note: The views expressed on Mises.org are not necessarily those of the Mises Institute.

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Something Stinks About Charlottesville

14 hours 39 min ago

Evidence is turning up from, of all places, the Southern Poverty Law Center, as well as Breitbart and others, that this character, Jason Kessler, who organized the suspicious and supposed Alt-Right demonstration in Charlottesville, Va. that blew up in everyone’s face, is a cunning lefty holdover from the Occupy Wall Street movement and a former Barack Obama supporter.  I smell Soros money, sabotage, and Democrat dirty tricks here.

I’ve been suspicious of the nature of the violence at this supposed Alt-Right demonstration since the news first began breaking.  It is no secret that radical elements in the Democrat left have been routinely utilizing violence when it suits their purposes.  We also know via secret tapings by Project Veritas that the Democratic Party has a semi-official director of dirty ops, Dick Creamer, who hires, trains, and emplaces professional disruptors to encounter, engage, and infiltrate conservative demonstrations to foment violence, assuring that the demonstrations then become the targets of negative media attention – naturally, against the conservative side.  Creamer was caught on videotape boasting about his nefarious capabilities when he thought he was in friendly company.

So here we now have another blown supposedly conservative demonstration, where violence erupts and people are killed, and guess who just happens to be a ringleader of the various ultra-right to Alt-Right organizations ranging from KKK and neo-Nazis to the kind of patriotic folks who might go to a Flag Day celebration!  Um, that would be our vaporous political will o’ the wisp, Jason Kessler, whose Occupy activities may well have put him in operational cahoots with high-level Democrat operatives.  And owing to the leniency of Virginia open carry laws, too many of Jason’s followers just had to parade their personal armories in all their camo combat gear, showing off their minuteman firepower.  My first reaction at seeing those clowns strutting down the street like they were in Mosul was, like that of many of my fellow NRA members and military veterans, shaking my fist and yelling at the TV, “No!  No!  No, you idiots!  No!”  And that kind of award-winning stupidity makes me wonder if the head planner for the event, Jason Soros…er, Kessler, didn’t have that firepower demonstration all lined up and ready to go precisely to make those right-wing tools look just like the fools they were being, while scaring the bejeezus out of the lefties, blacks, and MSM twerps.

Read the Whole Article

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Defy Your Doctor and Be Healthy

14 hours 39 min ago

This book condenses seven years of research concerning all of the things that doctors never say, and it teaches readers how to break free of the medical treadmill. Alternatives are explained in every chapter to demonstrate the healing power of natural medicine.  Defy Your Doctor and Be Healed is what the other natural cures books were supposed to have been, but weren’t. It does not merely list what works and what does not. It explains the hows and whys in a very straightforward manner.

Your doctor is not your healer. He is your dealer. This is why diabetes drugs cause full-onset diabetes, cholesterol medications cause sudden-onset heart attacks, and why radiation from cancer screenings causes cancer. The system is primarily designed to be self perpetuating, and to prevent us from ever being free. There is no money to be made from healthy patients, nor is there profit in having dead patients. The money is made somewhere in the middle, in patients who are alive, but barely.

By discovering how corrupt the system is, readers will never see things in the same way again. The medical establishment is one of few industries which remains well respected, because it has so cunningly been able to manipulate the public and the media — much more than any other industry ever has. As one of the hundreds of examples given within the book, cancer patients who forgo standard treatments live four times longer, and have a better quality of life; making virtually any alternative therapy superior. The mortality census shows that properly prescribed medications cause more deaths in the United States every year than any war in its history, and this omits the deaths from medical mistakes and surgery.

The legitimate alternative therapies are explained throughout this book, which were actually standard therapies prior to the early part of the twentieth century. These were the truly safe medicines that had been honed for centuries before the medical schools were hijacked by the Rockefeller Foundation, American Medical Association, and before medicine’s unholy trinity was formed with the addition of the Food and Drug Administration. This fascist cartel gave rise to a petrochemical empire that rules not only our highways and industries, but it covertly monopolizes our medicine as well. Its first actions were to silence all competition to its medical monopoly through disingenuous licensing laws, and then to ban all natural treatment options by fiat, for the sake of promoting its own chemical drugs. Such has come to pass. Few people know of this darkly-shrouded history, or of the better alternatives, because of the cartel’s iron grip upon society’s throat.

One of the reasons why alternative medicine is routinely mocked is because most of what has been presented as alternative medicine in recent times is not even medicine at all. Instead, it consists of new-age occultism. Much of it dates back to the forbidden religious practices of the ancient Egyptians. Our dedication to the truth and to using the natural tools that we have been given is one of the reasons why we refer to our healing methodologies as “God’s medicine”. It is giving the credit for our ability to heal where it is really due, and it conveys that the human body was not designed to be broken.

Reprinted from Amazon.com.

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No One Gave Peace a Chance, Including the Cops

14 hours 39 min ago

“What has violence ever accomplished? What has it ever created? …No wrongs have ever been righted by riots and civil disorders … an uncontrolled or uncontrollable mob is only the voice of madness, not the voice of the people … Whenever any American’s life is taken by another American unnecessarily—whether it is done in the name of the law or in the defiance of law, by one man or a gang, in cold blood or in passion, in an attack of violence or in response to violence—whenever we tear at the fabric of life which another man has painfully and clumsily woven for himself and his children, the whole nation is degraded.” — Robert Kennedy

Let’s be clear about one thing: no one—not the armed, violent, militant protesters nor the police—gave peace a chance during the August 12 demonstrations in Charlottesville, Va.

What should have been an exercise in free speech quickly became a brawl.

It’s not about who threw the first punch or the first smoke bomb.

It’s not about which faction outshouted the other, or which side perpetrated more violence, or even which group can claim to be the greater victim.

One young woman is dead because of the hate, violence, intolerance, racism and partisanship that is tearing this country apart, and it has to stop.

Lawful, peaceful, nonviolent First Amendment activity did not kill Heather Heyer.

She was killed by a 20-year-old Neo-Nazi who drove his car into a crowd of pedestrians in Charlottesville, Va.

Words, no matter how distasteful or disagreeable, did not turn what should have been an exercise in free speech into a brawl.

That was accomplished by militant protesters on both sides of the debate who arrived at what should have been a nonviolent protest armed with sticks and guns, bleach bottles, balloons filled with feces and urine and improvised flamethrowers, and by the law enforcement agencies who stood by and allowed it.

As the New York Times reported, “Protesters began to mace one another, throwing water bottles and urine-filled balloons— some of which hit reporters — and beating each other with flagpoles, clubs and makeshift weapons. Before long, the downtown area was a melee. People were ducking and covering with a constant stream of projectiles whizzing by our faces, and the air was filled with the sounds of fists and sticks against flesh.”

The madness is spreading.

People I know—good, decent people who value equality, reject racism, and believe strongly in tolerance—in their grief and dismay and disgust, threatened violence, acted like a mob, and adopted similarly violent, intolerant, disorderly tactics as those they claim to oppose.

Those who defend free speech were castigated by those who believe that only certain views should be allowed to be heard.

Those who cling to nonviolence were outnumbered by angry mobs intent on inciting violence.

Those who normally advocate a message of tolerance gave into the temptation to spew hate and intolerance.

The Rutherford Institute and the ACLU, two organizations who repeatedly stand up for the Constitution and the rights of all people—no matter how disagreeable their views may be—have been cursed at, denounced and threatened with violence for daring to remind government officials (and members of the community) that the First Amendment applies to all people equally.

The threats of violence have come from people who, while rightfully disgusted by the racist rhetoric and actions of the Neo-Nazis, wrongly decided that the answer to bigotry, intolerance and violence is mob justice, intolerance and more violence.

Glenn Greenwald gets it.

In a resounding rebuke of those who would opt to employ the tactics of fascists in order to silence fascists, Greenwald writes for The Intercept:

Demonizing lawyers and civil liberties advocates by depicting them as “complicit” in the heinous acts of their clients is a long-standing scam that is not confined to the U.S… Needless to say, none of these legal organizations or individual lawyers condone violence. They all vehemently oppose the ideology and worldview in the name of which this violence is committed. Yet they are all blamed for the violence and accused of complicity in it because they defend the free speech rights and civil liberties of people who express views in the name of which violence is committed.

The flaws and dangers in this anti-free-speech mindset are manifest, but nonetheless always worth highlighting, especially when horrific violence causes people to want to abridge civil liberties in the name of stopping it. In sum, purporting to oppose fascism by allowing the state to ban views it opposes is like purporting to oppose human rights abuses by mandating the torture of all prisoners. One of the defining attributes of fascism is forcible suppression of views… You can’t fight that ideology by employing and championing one of its defining traits: viewpoint-based state censorship…

The need to fight neo-Nazism and white supremacy wherever it appears is compelling. The least effective tactic is to try to empower the state to suppress the expression of their views. That will backfire in all sorts of ways: strengthening that movement and ensuring that those who advocate state censorship today are its defenseless targets tomorrow. And whatever else is true, the impulse to react to terrorist attacks by demanding the curtailment of core civil liberties is always irrational, dangerous, and self-destructive, no matter how tempting that impulse might be.

In other words, silencing unpopular viewpoints with which the majority might disagree—whether it’s by shouting them down, censoring them, muzzling them, or criminalizing them—only empowers those in the minority.

We are walking a dangerous road.

And then there’s the role police are supposed to play in upholding the law and preventing violence.

It’s a thankless job most of the time, and police must walk a fine line between respecting peaceful First Amendment activity and maintaining the peace, while not overstepping the limits of the Fourth Amendment.

For whatever reason—which only the police and government officials are privy to—the police failed to do their job at the Charlottesville demonstration, a charge levied by both the Alt Right and the counterdemonstrators.

The same police who in the past have responded to any acts of disorder or disobedience with the full power of their uniform and weapons were curiously lax in the face of outright violence.

As a Rolling Stone reporter recounted, “Unlike other events I’ve covered where anti-fascist protesters face off with white supremacists, the police make no effort to cordon the two groups off from each other to prevent violent clashes before they happen.”

Despite the fact that 1,000 first responders (including 300 state police troopers and members of the National Guard)—many of whom had been preparing for the downtown rally for months—had been called on to work the event, despite the fact that police in riot gear surrounded Emancipation Park on three sides, and despite the fact that Charlottesville had had what reporter David Graham referred to as “a dress rehearsal of sorts” a month earlier when 30 members of the Ku Klux Klan were confronted by 1000 counterprotesters, police failed to do their jobs.

In fact, as the Washington Post reports, police “seemed to watch as groups beat each other with sticks and bludgeoned one another with shields… At one point, police appeared to retreat and then watch the beatings before eventually moving in to end the free-for-all, make arrests and tend to the injured.”

Police Stood By As Mayhem Mounted in Charlottesville,” reported ProPublica.

Could Police Have Prevented Bloodshed in Charlottesville?” asked The Atlantic.

Police Response Inadequate at Charlottesville Rally,” concluded U.S. News.

There was no police presence,” a peaceful activist explained. “We were watching people punch each other; people were bleeding all the while police were inside of barricades at the park, watching. It was essentially just brawling on the street and community members trying to protect each other.”

Cornel West echoed this sentiment. “The police didn’t do anything in terms of protecting the people of the community, the clergy,” he told The Washington Post.

So what should the police have done differently?

For starters, the police should have established clear boundaries—buffer zones—between the warring groups of protesters and safeguarded the permit zones.

Instead, as eyewitness accounts indicate, police established two entrances into the permit areas of the park and created barriers “guiding rallygoers single-file into the park” past lines of white nationalists and antifa counterprotesters.

This is where the worst of the violence between protesters took place.

By 8:40 am protesters had already started gathering in the downtown area. Police failed to separate them.

By 10 am, a “mob of white supremacists formed a battle line across from a group of counter-protesters.” Police looked on and did nothing.

By 11 am, the general unrest had dissolved into all-out disorder. Police did not step in.

All the while protesters were throwing urine-filled water bottles, pepper spray and smoke bombs, and clobbering one another with flag poles and shields, Brian Moran, Virginia’s secretary of public safety and homeland security, watchedfrom a command post overlooking the downtown area and did nothing.

Moran watched while fights broke out and police stood by and failed to intervene.

Only at 11:22 am, after hours of brawling and confrontations between the protesters, did Moran take action by calling on Governor Terry McAuliffe to declare a state of emergency. Only then did police mobilize to declare the gathering an unlawful assembly, “cutting off the rally before it officially began,” and begin clearing demonstrators out of the park.

There were other models that could have been followed.

As investigative reporter Sarah Posner notes, “At a neo-Nazi rally in Harrisburg, Pennsylvania, just days before the November election, police employed this tactic with success – while the rally attendees and anti-fascist protesters taunted each other over a barrier of police, they were blocked from coming into physical contact. But in Charlottesville, the police inaction creates a sense of pandemonium.”

A good strategy, advises former federal prosecutor Miriam Krinsky, is to make clashes less likely by separating the two sides physically, with officers forming a barrier between them. “Create a human barrier so the flash points are reduced as quickly as possible,” she said.

In Cleveland, the site of the GOP presidential convention, “Trump diehards, Revolutionary Communists, Wobblies, and Alex Jones disciples” faced off in a downtown plaza. Yet as The Atlantic reports, “Just as confrontations between the groups seemed near to getting out of hand, police swooped into the square in huge numbers, using bicycles to create cordons between rival factions. The threat of violence soon passed, and no pepper spray or tear gas was needed.”

For that matter, consider that Charlottesville police established clear boundaries just a month earlier in which they maintained clear lines of demarcation at all times between KKK protesters and counterprotesters. Indeed, the primary violence at the July 8 Klan rally came when police used tear gas and pepper spray to force protesters to disperse.

The question, as always, is where do we go from here?

It’s a question that Martin Luther King Jr. wrestled with and addressed in the last book he wrote before his assassination, Where Do We Go from Here: Chaos or Community?

As King pointed out repeatedly, hate begets hate. Violence begets violence.

And as I make clear in my book Battlefield America: The War on the American People, tyranny begets tyranny.

The day after King was assassinated, Robert F. Kennedy delivered these remarks:

This is a time of shame and sorrow. It is not a day for politics. I have saved this one opportunity to speak briefly to you about this mindless menace of violence in America which again stains our land and every one of our lives. It is not the concern of any one race. The victims of the violence are black and white, rich and poor, young and old, famous and unknown. They are, most important of all, human beings whom other human beings loved and needed. No one – no matter where he lives or what he does – can be certain who will suffer from some senseless act of bloodshed. And yet it goes on and on…

Too often we honor swagger and bluster and the wielders of force; too often we excuse those who are willing to build their own lives on the shattered dreams of others. Some Americans who preach nonviolence abroad fail to practice it here at home. Some who accuse others of inciting riots have by their own conduct invited them. Some looks for scapegoats, others look for conspiracies, but this much is clear; violence breeds violence, repression brings retaliation, and only a cleaning of our whole society can remove this sickness from our soul.

For a broad and adequate outline we know what must be done. When you teach a man to hate and fear his brother, when you teach that he is a lesser man because of his color or his beliefs or the policies he pursues, when you teach that those who differ from you threaten your freedom or your job or your family, then you also learn to confront others not as fellow citizens but as enemies – to be met not with cooperation but with conquest, to be subjugated and mastered. We learn, at the last, to look at our brothers as aliens, men with whom we share a city, but not a community, men bound to us in common dwelling, but not in common effort. We learn to share only a common fear – only a common desire to retreat from each other – only a common impulse to meet disagreement with force.

The lesson for all of us is this: remember, when you strip away the politics and the class warfare and the skin color and the religious ideology and the gender differences and the sexual orientation and anything else that can be used as a source of division, remember that underneath it all, we are all the same.

As Nelson Mandela recognized, “No one is born hating another person because of the color of his skin, or his background, or his religion. People must learn to hate, and if they can learn to hate, they can be taught to love, for love comes more naturally to the human heart than its opposite.”

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The Reckless US Worldview

14 hours 39 min ago

THE CONFRONTATION BETWEEN the U.S. and North Korea has cooled off slightly with Kim Jong-un’s announcement that, at least for the time being, he will not attack Guam with an “enveloping fire.”

So since we have a small breather before Armageddon, let’s take the time to understand what this conflict is all about.

A good place to start is with the repeated comparisons U.S. politicians have made between the situation with North Korea and the Cuban missile crisis in October 1962.

For instance, Sebastian Gorka, deputy assistant to President Donald Trump, recently said, “This is analogous to the Cuban missile crisis.”

According to Rep. Darrell Issa, R-Calif., “It represents the greatest crisis … undoubtedly since the Cuban missile crisis.”

Democratic Sen. Ed Markey of Massachusetts calls it a “modern-day Cuban missile crisis.”

Former CIA director Leon Panetta believes it’s “the most serious crisis involving a potential nuclear war since the Cuban missile crisis.”

Gorka, Issa, Markey, and Panetta are, in fact, all correct: This is quite a lot like the Cuban missile crisis. However, it’s not for the reason they appear to think, which is something like “we again face a crazy adversary that is willing to blow up the world and we should all be terrified.”

Here’s the real similarity:

The “crisis” then and now was created by the refusal of the U.S. to live under the same threat to which we subject others.

John F. Kennedy had claimed during his 1960 presidential campaign that the U.S. faced a terrifying nuclear “missile gap” with the Soviet Union, which was poised to overwhelm the homeland at any second. As Kennedy likely knew, this was exactly the opposite of reality. The Soviets had a few dozen unreliable intercontinental ballistic missiles, while the U.S. had several hundred of much higher quality. When America’s nuclear-armed bombers and submarines were added, the U.S. had about 10 times as many nuclear warheads as the Soviets.

Soon after Kennedy took office, the U.S. stationed medium-range nuclear-tipped Jupiter missiles in Italy, and placed more in Turkey in April 1962. ICBMs launched from the U.S. would take perhaps 30 minutes to reach the Soviet Union. The Turkish missiles were about 2,000 kilometers from Moscow and therefore could strike the Soviet capital with almost no warning.

It’s still not clear how much of a role the Jupiter missiles played in Soviet leader Nikita Khrushchev’s decision to deploy Soviet nuclear weapons to Cuba, starting in the summer of 1962. Khrushchev apparently first discussed doing so after being briefed on the missiles in Turkey, and later said the missiles in Cuba “equalized what the West like to call ‘the balance of power.’” However, another part of the Soviets’ motivation was to deter the U.S. from launching an invasion of Cuba – something which was a real possibility, given the Bay of Pigs attack the previous year and the CIA’s ongoing Operation Mongoose.

In any case, Khrushchev was correct that all that the missiles in Cuba did was level the playing field: Washington D.C. was about 2,000 kilometers from Cuba, and could be obliterated in a matter of minutes, just like Moscow could be obliterated in minutes with the U.S. missiles in Turkey.

Read the Whole Article

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What Afghanistan Looked Like

14 hours 39 min ago

In 1967, Dr. William Podlich, an amateur photographer and college professor, took a leave of absence from his job at Arizona State to work with UNESCO in Kabul, bringing his wife and daughters along with him. It was here that Podlich documented Afghanistan, at a time before the U.S. invasion, Russian war, and Marxist revolution had touched the land with its power and destruction.

The photos expose a place that once looked healthy in its nature, strong in its structure, and flourishing with free people. But soon the Soviet invasion of 1979 would open the doors to the destruction of the country known now for being war-torn — a stark opposition to its past reputation as a thriving and modern nation.

“When I look at my dad’s photos, I remember Afghanistan as a country with thousands of years of history and culture,” says Dr. Podlich’s daughter, Peg Podlich. “It has been a gut-wrenching experience to watch and hear about the profound suffering which has occurred in Afghanistan during the battles of war for nearly 40 years. Fierce and proud yet fun-loving people have been beaten down by terrible forces.”

Peg Podlich also said of her father:

He had always said that since he had served in WWII…he wanted to serve in the cause of peace. In 1967, he was hired by UNESCO as an expert on principles of education for a two-year stint in Kabul…. Throughout his adult life, because he was interested in social studies, whenever he traveled around [in Arizona, to Mexico, and other places] he continued to take pictures. In Afghanistan he took half-frame color slides [on Kodachrome] and I believe he used a small Olympus camera.

Podlich’s eye-opening collection of photos from the 1960s were honoured by his son-in-law Clayton Esterson, who took it upon himself to revive the message behind the images by putting them on the web. People were astounded by the images exposed: a country with character; with promise.

“I have taken on the role as family archivist and when Bill Podlich gave us his extensive slide collection, I immediately recognized the historical significance of the pictures,” Esterson says. “Many Afghans have written comments [on the website] showing their appreciation for the photographs that show what their country was like before 33 years of war. This makes the effort to digitize and restore these photographs worthwhile.”

Many photos have circulated the web in various forms, while a full collection of Dr. Podlich’s work can be found on a website maintained by Esterson.

When you imagine Afghanistan, you likely don’t envision a place where liberal lifestyles run the show. But as you will see in the following images, The Kabul used to be a bustling capital of well-dressed men, women wearing colourful clothing, and even short skirts, as they walked freely amongst the masses, while foreigners and tourists had the pleasure of exploring peacefully, without fear for their safety, and children had comfortable classrooms, lush land to explore, and adolescences free from the ravages of war.

To read our articles about “False Flag Terrorism,” you can click HERE.

Reprinted with permission from Collective Evolution.

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Sleep More, Weigh Less?

14 hours 39 min ago

By Dr. Mercola

Nearly 71 percent of U.S. adults aged 20 and over are overweight or obese. Among children, nearly 21 percent of 12- to 19-year-olds are considered obese, along with 17 percent of 6- to 11-year-olds and 9 percent of 2- to 5-year-olds.1 Exercise and, particularly, diet, definitely play a role in this epidemic, but there’s another often-overlooked factor that may help people to keep their weight in check with little added effort. In fact, it requires nothing but getting more sleep.

Like overweight and obesity, insufficient sleep is a public health problem in the U.S. — and it could be that the two are related. The U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) reported that 50 million to 70 million adults have sleep or wakefulness disorder, while more than 35 percent said they sleep fewer than seven hours during a typical 24-hour period.2

Meanwhile, this lack of sleep is having serious consequences, like unintentionally falling asleep during the day (reported by 38 percent of survey respondents) or nodding off while driving (reported by nearly 5 percent). Your weight, however, may also suffer.

Sleeping Well Associated With Smaller Waist, Lower Weight

U.K. researchers looked into the connection between how long you sleep (sleep duration), diet and metabolic health among more than 1,600 adults.3 Past research has linked not enough sleep with an increased risk of metabolic diseases, including obesity, and this study found similar results. Sleep duration was negatively associated with body mass index (BMI) and waist circumference, which means the longer a person slept, the smaller their waist and lower their BMI were likely to be.

Specifically, people who slept for an average of just six hours a night had a waist circumference more than 1 inch (3 centimeters) larger than those who slept for nine hours a night.4 Shorter sleep was also linked to lower levels of beneficial HDL cholesterol,5 and researchers noted, “[O]ur findings show that short-sleeping U.K. adults are more likely to have obesity, a disease with many comorbidities.”

Along these lines, a study published in the journal Sleep even found that sleeping in longer on weekends — also known as “catch up sleep” (CUS) — may positively impact your weight. On average, the group of participants who slept up to two hours longer on weekend days than weekdays had a significantly lower BMI than the non-CUS group.6 Lack of sleep influences hormone levels, including increasing the “hunger hormone” ghrelin and decreasing leptin, which is involved in satiety.

By activating your endocannabinoid system, which is involved in modulating appetite and food intake, sleep deprivation can even give you the munchies, similar to marijuana use. In the featured study, while the researchers hypothesized that shorter sleep may lead to increased unhealthy eating, they found no such link in this case.

How Does Sleep Affect Your Waistline?

Sleep is intricately involved in your body’s ability to function properly. Skimp on it, and your self-control will suffer, as will your willpower to make healthy eating choices. On a biological level, however, lack of sleep also disrupts important hormones — like, as mentioned, ghrelin and leptin — and metabolic function. Losing as little as 30 minutes of sleep each night can disrupt your metabolism enough to cause weight gain.

In fact, each half-hour of sleep debt incurred during weeknights raised one study’s participants’ risk for obesity and insulin resistance by 17 percent and 39 percent respectively after one year.7 What this means is that if you need eight hours of sleep but consistently only get seven, you may theoretically raise your risk of obesity by about 34 percent and simultaneously jack up your chances of insulin resistance — which is a hallmark of most chronic diseases, including type 2 diabetes — by 78 percent.

In another revealing study, people who slept only five hours a night gained nearly 2 pounds a week while consuming extra calories, primarily late at night. On the contrary, people who slept nine hours a night maintained their weight and tended to eat fewer high-carbohydrate foods and unhealthy fats.8 The results are true even among children, which research revealed that children with the least amount of sleep are 4.2 times more likely to be obese.9

If you’re trying to lose weight, getting adequate sleep may make or break your results, with research from the University of Chicago showing that dieters who slept for 8.5 hours lost 55 percent more body fat than dieters who slept 5.5 hours.10 “Lack of sufficient sleep may compromise the efficacy of typical dietary interventions for weight loss and related metabolic risk reduction,” the researchers wrote, continuing:11

“The neuroendocrine changes associated with sleep curtailment in the presence of caloric restriction, however, raise the possibility that lack of sufficient sleep may compromise the efficacy of commonly used dietary interventions in such individuals. For instance, higher ghrelin concentrations may facilitate the retention of fat and increased hunger could compromise adherence to caloric restriction.”

How to Gauge If Your Health Is at Risk From Not Enough Sleep

Worldwide, the average sleep duration on weekdays has declined by about 37 minutes over the last 10 years.12 Meanwhile, about 1 in 3 Americans is getting less than seven hours of sleep a night, and an estimated 83.6 million adults in the U.S. are sleep-deprived.13

In addition to weight gain, too little sleep has been linked to type 2 diabetes and metabolic syndrome. The featured study also revealed that short sleep may also interfere with thyroid hormones and raise C-reactive protein levels (CRP), which may promote inflammation and increase the risk of type 2 diabetes.14

Aside from chronic disease, sleep deprivation has the same effect on your immune system as physical stress or illness,15 which may help explain why lack of sleep is tied to an increased risk of numerous chronic diseases and acute illnesses like colds and flu. In fact, research shows adults who sleep less than six hours a night have a four times higher risk of catching a cold when directly exposed to the virus than those who get at least seven hours.16

Sleeping less than five hours per night resulted in a 4.5 times higher risk. The study found that sleep was more important than any other factor when it came to protecting against the cold virus, including stress levels, age and smoking. You probably already know if you’re sleep deprived, but in case you’re not sure, the late Professor Emeritus Nathaniel Kleitman, physiologist and sleep researcher, came up with one of the simplest tests to determine if you’re sleep deprived — and as a pioneer in sleep research, he was well qualified to know.

Here’s how it works: In the early afternoon, grab a spoon and head off to your darkened bedroom to take a nap. Place a metal tray on the floor beside your bed, and hold the spoon over the tray as you attempt to fall asleep. Be sure to check the time as well. Next, when you inevitably fall asleep and the spoon crashes down onto the tray, waking you up, immediately check the time again and note how much time has passed.

If you fell asleep within five minutes, it means you’re severely sleep deprived, according to Kleitman. If it took you 10 minutes to fall asleep, this is still a sign that you could use more sleep. If, however, you managed to stay awake for 15 minutes or more before falling asleep, you’re probably well rested.17 If you don’t happen to have a spoon and metal tray handy, you can still take this test by setting an alarm for 15 minutes to see if you fall asleep before it goes off.

Most Adults Need Eight Hours of Sleep a Night

Sleep needs vary depending on your age, activity levels and health status, but the studies are quite clear — and most experts agree — that eight hours of sleep a night is ideal. Keep in mind, however, that eight hours of sleep is not eight hours in bed. If you go to bed at 10 p.m. and get out of bed at 6 a.m., you might say you’ve slept for eight hours. In reality, you probably spent at least 15 to 30 minutes falling asleep and may have woken during the night one or more times.

With the advent of fitness-tracking devices, however, we now have access to actual sleep data (and more) from wristband users. The data is quite useful on a personal level and can help you determine when you need to get into bed to realize a full eight hours of sleep. If your problem sleeping is less about when to go to sleep and more about having trouble sleeping once you’re in bed, turn your attention to sleep hygiene.

Perhaps the most important natural “trick” of all for improving your sleep is to make sure you’re getting proper exposure to bright light during the day and no exposure to blue light at night. In the morning, bright, blue-light-rich sunlight signals to your body that it’s time to wake up. At night, as the sun sets, darkness should signal to your body that it’s time to sleep.

Ideally, to help your circadian system reset itself, get at least 10 to 15 minutes of natural light first thing in the morning. This will send a strong message to your internal clock that day has arrived, making it less likely to be confused by weaker light signals later on.

Then, around solar noon, get another “dose” of at least 30 minutes’ worth of sunlight. A full hour or more would be even better. If your schedule is such that you have to get up and arrive at work before sunrise, aim to get at least that half-hour of bright sunlight sometime during the day.

In the evening when the sun begins to set, put on amber-colored glasses that block blue light. You can also dim your lights and turn off electronic devices to reduce your exposure to light that may stifle your melatonin production. Better still, swap out LEDs for incandescent or low-voltage incandescent halogen lights. After sundown, you can also shift to a low-wattage bulb with yellow, orange or red light if you need illumination.

A salt lamp illuminated by a 5-watt bulb is an ideal solution that will not interfere with your melatonin production. Candle light also works well. If you’ve already optimized your light exposure and are still struggling with sleep, see my 33 healthy sleep secrets for a more comprehensive list of strategies for a better night’s rest.

Sources and References

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The US’s 2nd Domestic War

14 hours 39 min ago

“They had found a leader, Robert E. Lee — and what a leader! … No military leader since Napoleon has aroused such enthusiastic devotion among troops as did Lee when he reviewed them on his horse Traveller.”

So wrote Samuel Eliot Morison in his magisterial “The Oxford History of the American People” in 1965.

First in his class at West Point, hero of the Mexican War, Lee was the man to whom President Lincoln turned to lead his army. But when Virginia seceded, Lee would not lift up his sword against his own people, and chose to defend his home state rather than wage war upon her.

This veneration of Lee, wrote Richard Weaver, “appears in the saying attributed to a Confederate soldier, ‘The rest of us may have … descended from monkeys, but it took a God to make Marse Robert.'”

Growing up after World War II, this was accepted history.

Yet, on the militant left today, the name Lee evokes raw hatred and howls of “racist and traitor.” A clamor has arisen to have all statues of him and all Confederate soldiers and statesmen pulled down from their pedestals and put in museums or tossed onto trash piles.

What has changed since 1965?

It is not history. There have been no great new discoveries about Lee.

What has changed is America herself. She is not the same country. We have passed through a great social, cultural and moral revolution that has left us irretrievably divided on separate shores.

And the politicians are in panic.

Two years ago, Virginia Gov. Terry McAuliffe called the giant statues of Lee and “Stonewall” Jackson on Richmond’s Monument Avenue “parts of our heritage.” After Charlottesville, New York-born-and-bred McAuliffe, entertaining higher ambitions, went full scalawag, demanding the statues be pulled down as “flashpoints for hatred, division, and violence.”

Who hates the statues, Terry? Who’s going to cause the violence? Answer: The Democratic left whom Terry must now appease.

McAuliffe is echoed by Lt. Gov. Ralph Northam, the Democratic candidate in November to succeed McAuliffe. GOP nominee Ed Gillespie wants Monument Avenue left alone.

The election is the place to decide this, but the left will not wait.

In Durham, North Carolina, our Taliban smashed the statue of a Confederate soldier. Near the entrance of Duke University Chapel, a statue of Lee has been defaced, the nose broken off.

Wednesday at dawn, Baltimore carried out a cultural cleansing by taking down statues of Lee and Maryland Chief Justice Roger Taney who wrote the Dred Scott decision and opposed Lincoln’s suspension of the right of habeas corpus.

Like ISIS, which smashed the storied ruins of Palmyra, and the al-Qaida rebels who ravaged the fabled Saharan city of Timbuktu, the new barbarism has come to America. This is going to become a blazing issue, not only between but within the parties.

For there are 10 Confederates in Statuary Hall in the Capitol, among them Lee, Georgia’s Alexander Stephens, vice president to Jefferson Davis, and Davis himself. The Black Caucus wants them gone.

Mount Rushmore-sized carvings of Lee, Jackson and Davis are on Stone Mountain, Georgia. Are they to be blasted off?

There are countless universities, colleges and high schools like Washington & Lee named for Confederate statesmen and soldiers. Across the Potomac from D.C. are Jefferson Davis Highway and Leesburg Pike to Leesburg itself, 25 miles north. Are all highways, streets, towns and counties named for Confederates to be renamed? What about Fort Bragg?

On every Civil War battlefield, there are monuments to the Southern fallen. Gettysburg has hundreds of memorials, statues and markers. But if, as the left insists we accept, the Confederates were traitors trying to tear America apart to preserve an evil system, upon what ground do Democrats stand to resist the radical left’s demands?

What do we do with those battlefields where Confederates were victorious: Bull Run, Fredericksburg, Chancellorsville?

“Where does this all end?” President Trump asked.

It doesn’t. Not until America’s histories and biographies are burned and new texts written to Nazify Lee, Jackson, Davis and all the rest, will a newly indoctrinated generation of Americans accede to this demand to tear down and destroy what their fathers cherished.

And once all the Confederates are gone, one must begin with the explorers, and then the slave owners like Presidents Washington, Jefferson and Madison, who seceded from slave-free Britain. White supremacists all.

Andrew Jackson, Henry Clay of Kentucky and John Calhoun must swiftly follow.

Then there are all those segregationists. From 1865 to 1965, virtually all of the great Southern senators were white supremacists.

In the first half of the 20th century, Woodrow Wilson and FDR carried all 11 states of a rigidly segregationist South all six times they ran, and FDR rewarded Dixie by putting a Klansman on the Supreme Court.

While easy for Republicans to wash their hands of such odious elements as Nazis in Charlottesville, will they take up the defense of the monuments and statues that have defined our history, or capitulate to the icon-smashers?

In this Second American Civil War, whose side are you on?

The post The US’s 2nd Domestic War appeared first on LewRockwell.

Nice To Have an AK-47 Handy

14 hours 39 min ago

A Florida woman in Panama City Beach heard the sounds of three men breaking into his vehicle early Sunday morning. She woke her husband to tell him, the moment so many gun owners secretly dread. He then reportedly got up, had her secure their children, and went out to confront the three men who were breaking into their car outside.

However, this Florida man wasn’t the dolt that has become synonymous with the phrase “Florida man” in recent years. He knew there was a 9mm pistol in the car, and he went out to confront the burglars armed with AK-47.

The incident unfolded around 2:45 a.m. when the homeowner’s wife was awakened by noises outside of their home. The woman then woke her husband, who looked outside and observed three suspects breaking into the family’s vehicles.

The man, who knew a 9mm handgun was in one of the vehicles, told his wife to watch over their children and ensure their safety as he grabbed an AK-47 and confronted the suspects.

Once confronted, the suspects fled to a nearby getaway vehicle, but the homeowner said one of the suspects, who was later identified as 19-year-old Tristen Wilson, turned toward him in a manner that led the homeowner to believe Wilson had a weapon. The homeowner, in turn, fired his weapon.

Wilson was struck in the leg and the gunshots left the getaway car’s windows shattered and at least one tire flat.

It’s important to remember that Florida is a Castle Doctrine state, so the gentleman in question is unlikely to face any legal charges resulting from this. Especially as it seems clear the sheriff believes this was a righteous shoot.

There is a possibility that someone will try to push the angle that the Castle Doctrine laws don’t cover someone breaking into a vehicle, but that should be nipped in the bud. The gentleman went outside armed, but he also knew there was a gun in the car. He had a real reason to be concerned enough about his safety so as to feel he needed a firearm for protection on that tidbit alone.

Read the Whole Article

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Are You TPP’d?

Fri, 08/18/2017 - 01:01

This article is all about how you can have a year’s supply of toilet paper, no matter what size house or apartment you live in.

Lack of sanitation has caused the death of more people worldwide than all of the wars in human history combined. Many of those deaths were due to poor sanitation methods and lack of understanding of diseases and how they link to poor hygiene.

So why is it that those who live in prosperous countries do so little about that aspect of self-reliance?Sanitation is such a vital part of survival yet do we consider it a vital part of our survival preps….at least enough to have a year’s supply of toilet paper and other sanitation supplies as well as “cleanliness” knowledge?

I’m making an educated guess here that only a tiny percentage of preppers have a years’ supply of this indispensable commodity.

We have all seen the frantic rush to the super market when a snowstorm is predicted. Those TP rolls just fly off of the shelves.

But, but, but, you say…how can I have a year’s supply of toilet paper? I just don’t have the room….I have a big family…. I live in an apartment! Is it really possible to have enough TP in my small space?

Good News! The answer is a resounding YES!

Your space is definitely big enough. It takes about 1 square foot of floor space to store a 6 month’s supply for 2 people. Do the math for your family size. You CAN do it. You DO have space.

If you have a garage your TP storage will actually take no floor space at all. If you store it inside your house, no one will even realize that it is there because neither friends or family will be able to see it! It’s a quick and easy project that will be fun for the whole family to work on together.

For even more motivation to do this, just spend a little time thinking about what you would do without it! Hmmm?

I wish I could take credit for thinking of this ingenious storage method but about 4 years ago when I was searching for a better way I came across this marvelous idea on a YouTube video. Since then I have shared those ideas with friends, family, neighbors and anyone who wants to learn. Perhaps you have seen it but if not, I am sharing in words and photos what that video taught me…how we did it and how we became fully toilet paper prepared. No last minute scramble to the grocery or big box store just to discover that the shelves are bare of this essential item.

I’m sharing how not to get caught with your pants down, so to speak, and with no vital solution close at hand.

To make an accurate assessment of you family’s toilet paper needs keep a running list of the number of rolls (and note the roll size) your family uses for one week. Now multiply that by 52. The method used here cost less than the cost of buying toilet paper in those 12 packs and takes up far less of your precious floor space. It’s all good.

So let’s begin.

How to Store Toilet Paper Efficiently

Supplies Needed:

  • 1 Cardboard 10” Masonry Tube
  • Duct tape
  • 7 old plastic grocery bags
  • 7 dryer sheets
  • Box of 12 coreless commercial size rolls of toilet paper

(Exact information about this to follow)

Once your supplies are together, this process only takes about 20 minutes to complete!

Okay. Let’s go. Here is the simple process to become fully toilet paper prepared.

Below is a photo of the heavy cardboard tube that is used by contractors for pouring concrete foundation supports. The tube is open at the top and bottom. It can be bought at most stores that sell contractor supplies. Places like Lowe’s or other similar home supply stores. The cost, if I remember correctly, is around $10 to $12 dollars for the tube. I can fit one in my mid-size car kitty-cornered. They also fit flat in our small truck bed.

First Step

The first step is to duct tape one end securely. Don’t skimp on the tape. Then do it again in the opposite direction to add more strength to your make-shift “lid”. Are you with me so far?

Now turn the tube over so that the taped end is on the floor and the open end is at the top. Next, take an old plastic grocery bag and drop it into the tube followed by one dryer sheet….yep, that’s one dryer sheet.

Second Step

You will need to order a box of coreless toilet paper. There are 12 very jumbo rolls per box and for 2 people one roll will last a bit over two weeks, so that’s a 6+ month’s supply. These large coreless rolls are for use in a toilet paper dispenser like you see in a store restroom.

You can order a dispenser as well. Ours dispenser cost was about $10 four years ago, but I just checked the cost today and the price has, of course, sky rocketed. You don’t absolutely have to have a dispenser because when the time comes to use your emergency storage TP you can simply slip a small smooth rope through the hole in the roll and hang it up.

Here is a photo of the information on the box of toilet paper. I ordered it from Amazon. These were one ply since at the time, the 2 ply version was nowhere to be found. I have recently seen the 2 ply coreless. Make sure you purchase coreless because the core size may not fit in a 10” masonry tube.

Third Step

Okay, the next step is to take 2 rolls of the coreless 9” rolls of toilet paper, seen below, and put them in an old plastic grocery bag that is snuggly tied. Now drop them flat end down into the tube. They will gently slide to the bottom. Drop in another dryer sheet.

Now repeat this process five more times until all of the toilet paper is in the tube…. 2 rolls TP into plastic bag snuggly tied, dropped into the tube, followed by a dryer sheet.

The empty plastic bags at either end of the tube will help the bag containing the TP not to stick to the duct tape lids. The dryer sheets are to deter little critters like Mickey and Minnie from nibbling on your new precious and needed sanitary resources!

Read the Whole Article

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Don’t Like Public Monuments?

Fri, 08/18/2017 - 01:01

When I was a student at the University of Colorado, I regularly walked by the Dalton Trumbo memorial fountain which was named after the communist Stalin-sympathizing novelist and screenwriter.

Once upon a time, the fountain had been simply known as “the fountain,” but around 25 years ago, it was unnecessarily renamed after a controversial person.

The reason for the renaming was the same as with any memorial or monument designed to honor a person or idea — to create an emotional connection and familiarity with the person or idea connected to the place; to communicate a certain view of history.

The renaming of the fountain followed an earlier renaming controversy. One of the University’s dorms, Nichols Hall, was named after a participant in the infamous Sand Creek Massacre. Even in its own time, the massacre had been denounced, earning condemnation from Indian fighters like Kit Carson. Not surprisingly, the dorm that bore Nichols’s name was eventually renamed “Cheyenne Arapahoe” in honor of the Indian tribes whose members Nichols had helped attack.

As with the Trumbo fountain, the dorm’s name was changed in order to send subtle messages — messages about what is valued, what is good, and what is bad.

There’s nothing inherently wrong with this, of course. The problem only arises when we begin to use taxpayer funded facilities and institutions to carry out these attempts at education.

Thus, in a sense, when approaching the problem of government monuments and memorials, we encounter the same problem we have with public schools. Whose values are going to be pushed, preserved, and exalted? And, who’s going to be forced to pay for it?

Ideology Changes Over Time 

This problem is further complicated by the fact that these views change over time.

Over time, the “good guys” can change as majority views shift, as new groups take over the machinery of government institutions, and as ideologies change.

In 1961, when Nichols Hall was named, few people apparently cared much about the Sand Creek Massacre. 25 years later, however, views had changed considerably among both students and administrators.

For a very obvious illustration of how these changes takes place, we need look no further than the schools.

In the early days of public schooling — an institution founded by Christian nationalists to push their message — students were forced to read the King James Bible. Catholics were forced to pay taxes so schools could instruct students on how awful and dangerous Catholicism was. Immigrant families from Southern and Eastern Europe were forced to pay for schools that instructed their children on the inferiority of their non-Anglo ethnic groups.

A century later, things have changed considerably. Today, Anglo-Saxons are taught to hate themselves, and while Catholics are still despised (but for different reasons), they now are joined in their pariah status by most other Christian groups as well. Italians and Eastern Europeans who were once treated in public schools as subhuman are now reviled as members of the white oppressor class.

Similar changes have taken place in art and in public monuments and memorials.

Public Memorials Serve the Same Function as Public Schools 

But the principle remains the same, whether we’re talking about public schools or public monuments: we’re using public funds and facilities to “educate” the public about what’s good and what’s not.

This has long been known by both the people who first erected today’s aging monuments, and by the people who now want to tear them down. The leftist who support scrapping certain monuments actively seek to change public monuments and memorials to back up their own worldview because they recognize that it can make a difference in the public imagination. They’re fine with forcing the taxpayers to support their own worldview, of course, and actively seek to use public lands, public spaces, public roads, and public buildings to subsidize their efforts. They already succeeded in doing this with public schools decades ago.

The Answer: Privatize the Monuments

In a way, the combined effect of public memorials, monuments, streets, and buildings function to turn public spaces into a type of large open-air social studies class, reinforcing some views, while ignoring others.

Libertarians have long noted the problem of public education: it’s impossible to teach history in a value-neutral way, and thus public schools are likely to teach values that support the state and its agendas. Even some conservatives have finally caught on.

To combat this problem, those who object to these elements within public schooling support homeschooling, private schooling, and private-sector alternatives that diminish the role of public institutions.

Governmental public spaces offer the same problem as public schools.

In both cases the answer is the same: minimize the role of government institutions in shaping public ideology, public attitudes, and the public’s view of history.

Rather than using publicly funded thoroughfares, parks, and buildings as a means of reinforcing public “education” and “shared history” as we do now, these government facilities should be stripped down to their most basic functions. Providing office space for administrative offices, providing streets for transport, and providing parks for recreation. (The last thing we need is a history lesson from the semi-illiterates on a typical city council.)

Some might argue that all these properties and facilities should be privatized themselves. That’s fair enough, but as long as we’re forced to live with these facilities, we need not also use them to “honor” politicians or whatever persons the current ruling class happens to find worthy of praise.

The nostalgia lobby will react with horror to this proposition. “Why, you can’t do that!” they’ll complain. “We’ll be robbed of our heritage and history.” Even assuming these people could precisely define exactly who “we” is they still need to explain why public property is necessary to preserve this alleged heritage.

After all, by this way of thinking, the preservation of one’s culture and heritage relies on a subsidy from the taxpayers, and a nod of assent from government agencies.

Preserving and Promoting Culture Through Private Action 

Once upon a time, however, people who actually valued their heritage did not sit around begging the government to protect it for them. Many were willing to actually take action and spend their own money on preserving the heritage that many now rather unconvincingly claim is so important to them.

A good example of the key role of private property in cases such as this can be seen in the work of the Catholic Church in the US — which has never enjoyed majority support from the population or from government institutions. If Catholics were to get their symbols and memorials in front of the public, they were going to have to build them on private property, and that’s exactly what they did.

In Denver, for example, the Catholics of the early 20th century knew (correctly) that no public park or government building was going to erect any Catholic-themed art or memorials on their property. So, the Catholics proceeded to erect an enormous cathedral on a hilltop one block from the state capitol. The new cathedral was highly visible and provided easy access to religious ceremonies for the few Catholic politicians and officials who worked at the capitol. It provided meeting space. It contained stained-glass art created by German masters. Moreover, the new building served as a huge symbolic middle finger to the anti-Catholic Ku Klux Klan which was growing in importance in Denver at the time.

So, did Church officials sit around whining about how there was no crucifix on the front lawn of the State Capitol? Did they demand that the taxpayers pay to maintain a central town plaza featuring a statue of Saint Peter? Some probably did. Those who made a difference, though, took action and acquired real estate in prominent places throughout the city. They put universities on that land, and cemeteries, and convents, and friaries, and schools, and even some memorials and statues. Today, next to the cathedral, on a busy street corner, is a large statue of a Catholic pope: John Paul II. It’s on private property. It’s seen by thousands every day.

Source.

And why should the self-appointed protectors of American “traditional” values think they deserve anything different? Indeed, we’d all have been saved a lot of trouble if the organizations that demanded statues of Confederate generals everywhere had put them on private land instead of in public parks. We’d all be better off if the private owners of the Stone Mountain monument hadn’t sold it to the State of Georgia because they were too cheap to maintain it themselves.

In the past, had the purveyors of publicly-funded culture instead taken a principled and successful stand against using public lands and funds to push a certain view of history, no one would have to now waste his time sitting through city council meetings where politicians decide who deserves a statue, and who is to be thrown in the dustbin of history. Were we to quit using public parks as showcases for public indoctrination, we wouldn’t have to worry about the Church of Satan erecting a monument in the “free speech area” of a public park — as they recently did near Minneapolis.

The next time someone wants a statue of some politician, artist, or intellectual — whether they be communists, Confederates, or satanists — they ought to be told to buy a nice little plot of land somewhere — perhaps along a busy street or next to an important street corner in town — and put their statue there.

Note: The views expressed on Mises.org are not necessarily those of the Mises Institute.

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Figuring Out the JFK Murder-Coup

Fri, 08/18/2017 - 01:01

The official story of the Kennedy assassination is that he was killed by a former U.S. Marine, lone-nut, communist assassin named Lee Harvey Oswald.

The big problem, however, is that the official story has never comported with much of the circumstantial evidence in the case nor with common sense, reason, and logic. That’s why no one has ever been able to come up with a credible motive for Oswald to kill Kennedy.

As I pointed out in Part 1, by the time he was assassinated Kennedy was ending the Cold War against the communist world and had announced his intention for America to live in peace, friendship, and mutual coexistence with the Soviet Union, especially Russia, Cuba, and the rest of the communist world.

If Oswald had, in fact, been an genuine communist, that would have made him ecstatic. Why kill Kennedy knowing that he would be replaced by Johnson, who vehemently disagreed with JFK’s change of direction and, instead, was on the same page as the Pentagon and the CIA?

Indeed, it wasn’t communists who hated Kennedy for what he was doing. It was instead the U.S. national-security establishment, which believed that Kennedy’s actions constituted a grave threat to national security.

In 1947, the federal government had been converted from a limited-government republic into a national-security state. The reason? To combat communists, communism, and the Soviet Union, especially Russia.

In the late 1940s, the U.S. government prosecuted officials in the U.S. Communist Party for belonging to an organization that embraced communist literature, literature that called for the violent overthrow of capitalism. The Smith Act prosecutions were big-time news in the 1940s and early 1950s. There is no way that any American would have been unaware of them.

And then there was the Korean War in the early 1950s, where the U.S. government intervened in a foreign civil war, without even the semblance of the congressional declaration of war required by the U.S. Constitution. In that “police action,” as U.S. officials called it, U.S. forces killed and injured millions of North Koreans, not only by carpet-bombing the entire country, including rural villages, but also by illegally using germ warfare. The rationale? The same rationale that would be relied on later to justify the massive killing of people in Vietnam’s civil war — that they were all nothing but “commies, Reds, and gooks.”

Today the Korean War is known as the Forgotten War. But it wasn’t forgotten back in the mid-1950s. Everyone knew about it. And everyone knew that the U.S. Marine Corps had killed a lot of “commies, Reds, and gooks” during the conflict.

Oswald was studying socialism and communism as a teenager. That was during the 1950s. By the time he was studying communism and socialism, the U.S. national-security establishment’s anti-communist crusade had been in full swing for years. The crusade was already part of the national psyche, especially given the Korean War and the persecution and criminal prosecution of suspected communists.

The obvious question arises: Why would a genuine communist want to join an organization — the U.S. Marine Corps — that had just killed and injured millions of communists in Korea? Why would he join a government that was persecuting, prosecuting, and jailing communists here in the United States? Why would he join an organization by which he could be ordered to go anywhere in the world on a moment’s notice and kill more “commies, Reds, and gooks,” such as Vietnam, Laos, or Berlin? Does that make any sense at all?

So, how does one explain this conundrum? How does one explain why Oswald, a supposed communist, joined the Marine Corps, an organization devoted to killing communists?

There is an easy explanation — one, however, that is not consistent with the official story.

In the 1950s, there was a famous television series called I Led Three Lives, which is based on a book of the same name by a man named Herbert Philbrick. The series revolved around an American man who posed as a communist but who was actually a FBI agent. The man’s job was to infiltrate communist cells that were supposedly operating here in the United States and secretly report their activities to the FBI.

It’s worth watching a couple of episodes of I Led Three Lives just to get a sense of what life was like here in the United States during the Cold War and the anti-communist crusade. You can access them on YouTube by searching for “I Led Three Lives.” The commies were supposedly everywhere — the State Department, the Army, Hollywood, the public schools, and other walks of life. The Russians were coming! They were coming to get us, take over the federal government, and turn America entirely Red.

Needless to say, the star of I Led Three Lives was portrayed as a heroic, courageous, and patriotic American. Risking his life every day at the hands of the communists, who might suddenly discover his secret identity, he was fighting to protect Americans from a communist takeover, fighting to keep America “free.”

For any teenage boy in the 1950s who had come to the realization that becoming Clark Kent and Superboy was beyond his reach, it was different with I Led Three Lives. Any American boy could grow up to become a G-Man and devote his life to ferreting out communists, prosecuting them, and jailing them, as U.S. officials were doing with members of the U.S. Communist Party in the 1940s and 1950s.

As a PBS documentary entitled Who Was Lee Harvey Oswald? pointed outI Led Three Lives was Lee Harvey Oswald’s favorite TV Show as a teenager.

Now things makes sense. Since this was his favorite television show, the teenage Oswald would naturally have begun fantasizing growing up to be like the hero of the show — a secret G-man who falsely portrayed himself as a communist in order to find and destroy the countless communist cells that were supposedly spreading across America.

The teenage Oswald would have realized that the job would necessarily involve learning everything he could about communism and socialism. After all, as you can see in the television series, any G-man who was falsely portraying himself as a communist to other communists would have to play his role convincingly. He would have to know communism as well as his enemies and be able to convince them that he too was a committed communist. To do that would require extensive study of communism and socialism.

Now it makes sense why Oswald would join the Marines, just as his older brother had. His joining the Marines demonstrated that like his hero in I Led Three Lives, Oswald hated communists as much as any other Marine. Moreover, he must have known that the Marines were where he would stand a good chance at being recruited to work for the FBI and maybe even the CIA.

In fact, take a look at the website of the CIA. See if it doesn’t point out the CIA looks to the U.S. military as a prime source for recruiting new agents. Clearly, the U.S. Marine Corps would rank near the top. Semper fidelis!

Soon after the Warren Commission got established, the chairman, Earl Warren, called a top-secret meeting of the committee. Its purpose? To address information that Warren had received that Lee Harvey Oswald, the accused assassin of President Kennedy, was in actuality an intelligence agent, one who had been secretly working for the FBI and maybe even the CIA.

It would certainly explain how Oswald learned to be fluent in Russian while he was in the military.

It would also explain why he was never abused, insulted, prosecuted, or thrown out of the military for proclaiming he was a Marxist Marine while he was still on active duty, even though U.S. officials were carrying out their anti-communist crusade against suspected communists all across America, including within the U.S. military.

It would explain why the military discharged him early so that he could travel to Russia where he would supposedly defect.

It would explain why the FBI and the CIA never indicted him or even summoned him to appear before a federal grand jury after he returned to the United States after supposedly attempting to defect to the Soviet Union.

It would explain how Oswald got a job with a company in New Orleans that was owned by a right-wing, anti-communist businessman.

It would explain why Oswald printed the address of a former FBI agent as the return address on a pro-Cuba pamphlet he was distributing in New Orleans.

It would explain what Oswald was behaving like a communist in New Orleans, with nary a peep from U.S. officials.

It would explain why the person standing in line next to Oswald when he was in New Orleans getting a visa to travel to Mexico was a CIA agent.

It would explain Oswald’s trip to Mexico City prior to JFK’s assassination.

It would explain how Oswald got a job in a photography business in Dallas that developed highly classified documents for the U.S. government.

It would explain why Oswald was seen in the company of a CIA agent in Dallas.

After he was arrested, Oswald proclaimed his innocence and claimed that he was being framed for the assassination of the president. Many people have never given that possibility any consideration. The automatic assumption has been that Oswald was guilty because the pat evidence pointed toward guilt, evidence that was entirely consistent with a good frame-up. Thus, the only question over the years has been: Did Oswald act alone or in a conspiracy with others?

The problem is that when the question is framed like that, it leads to nothing but contradictions, inconsistencies, anomalies, mysteries, and conundrums that cause people to throw their hands up in despair. It’s also why we still have people like Larry Sabato and Philip Shenon trying to come up with some motive for Oswald more than 50 years after the assassination. Many people simply cannot accept the possibility or probability that Oswald was telling the truth — that he was, in fact, innocent and was being framed by the very people who actually did have a motive for assassinating the president — the same motive that drove them to target Mossadegh, Arbenz, Castro, Allende, and others for regime-change operations. They simply cannot accept that that an agency that specialized in protecting “national security” through assassination and cover-up in other parts of the world would actually do its job here in the United States when circumstances supposedly required it.

As I detail in my ebook The Kennedy Autopsy, there was clearly a cover-up involving the autopsy of the president. Today there is no reasonable question about that, especially given the extensive information in Douglas Horne’s five-volume book Inside the Assassination Records Review Board.

For example, when the ARRB summoned former Navy photography official Saundra Spencer to testify in the 1990s, she said that the autopsy photographs in the official record were not the ones she developed on a top-secret, classified basis on the weekend of the assassination. The ones she developed, she testified, had a big hole in the back of Kennedy’s head, which connoted an exit wound, which implied a shot fired from the front. Her sworn testimony confirmed the statements of the Dallas physicians who confirmed that there was a huge exit-sized wound in the back of Kennedy’s head. Yet, the official photographs in the records show the back on Kennedy’s head to be intact.

Spencer’s testimony stands today. It was never contradicted by the Pentagon or the CIA. That means that the official autopsy photographs in the Kennedy case are fraudulent, which necessarily means that there was a cover-up. The question naturally arises: Who would they be covering up for on the very night of the assassination?

In 1953, in the run-up to the Guatemala regime-change operation, the CIA published a top-secret assassination manual that demonstrates that the agency had begun specializing in assassination early on. Equally important, the manual demonstrates that the CIA was also specializing in how to keep people from discovering its role in state-sponsored assassinations. By the time the 1960s rolled around, the Pentagon and the CIA were teaching Latin American military dictatorships that in the case of covert state-sponsored assassinations, a good strategy would be to blame the assassination on a communist. I wonder why they were so convinced that the blame-a-communist strategy would be successful in keeping people from discovering that a political assassination was state-sponsored.

Was Oswald in fact an U.S. intelligence agent whose secret portrayal as a communist was used to frame him for assassinating the president? As I show in my ebook Regime Change: The JFK Assassination, that’s the only thesis by which all the mysteries, anomalies, inconsistencies, and contradictions disappear. It’s the only thesis by which all the pieces of circumstantial evidence fall into place in the Kennedy assassination.

The problem is that all too many Americans find it too frightening to go down that road. While they now accept the U.S. regime-change operations in Iran, Guatemala, Cuba, Chile, Congo, and others, which took place before, during, and after the Kennedy assassination, unfortunately they still cannot bring themselves to see that the assassination of President Kennedy is as much a part of our nation’s national-security heritage as those other regime-change operations are.

Reprinted with permission from The Future of Freedom Foundation.

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Russia Turns to Cryptocurrencies

Fri, 08/18/2017 - 01:01

The central depository for the Moscow Exchange, National Settlement Depository (NSD), announced that it is developing a platform to provide accounting services for digital assets like cryptocurrencies.

The platform looks to be build a unit of account, very important in the volatile crypto-space, for people to value their assets in and have access to through a wallet platform.

In short, the Moscow Exchange is taking a page out of Dan Larimer’s BitShares and its OpenLedger exchange to provide trading and accounting and banking services all validated and accessible through the blockchain.

In essence, by the end of 2018, cryptos will be trading on the Moscow Exchange and integrated into the banking system to stand beside stocks, bonds and other derivative assets.

CEO Eddie Astanin:

“Our goal is to create a secure and user-friendly accounting infrastructure for digital assets. We consider the platform would not only provide technological and legal protection of all parties involved, but also extend variety of post-trade services for investors, custodians and new institutions emerging in this sector of economy.”

Building Blockchains off the Putin/Buterin Meeting

This is yet another example of Russia’s rapid response to the changing environment of cryptos.  Vladimir Putin’s meeting with Ethereum designer, Vitalik Buterin, in May at the St. Petersburg International Economic Forum must have been truly eye-opening for Putin.

Since then I can almost not keep up with the news flow coming out of Russia relative to the widespread adoption of the blockchain to rapidly modernize those areas of its economy that need it in order to compete over the next generation or two.

Putin, ever the long-game strategist, must have had a ‘eureka’ moment talking with Buterin about Ethereum for people close to the Kremlin to be reacting this quickly.

And the news this morning that Buterin is working on the fix for Ethereum’s scaling issues is welcome news on this front as well.

Blockchains as Sanctions Defense

But this goes deeper than just banking modernization, which is a priority for the Russian government.  These moves into crypto are direct responses to the new sanctions placed on Russia by the U.S.

These are moves to make Russia a diversified destination for capital fleeing the chaos of the Western political breakdown that we are watching unfold before our eyes in real time.

There has been a lot of smoke about Russia (and China) backing their national currencies with Gold.  And, while as a gold bug, I appreciate this sentiment I also understand that Russia couldn’t do that in this environment without creating insane capital flow issues in the current environment.

The better plan is to loosen central bank policy, issue some ruble-denominated debt (or yuan) while building up the crypto infrastructure to absorb those capital flows without creating dislocations within the ruble market.

This creates a more natural and organic flow of capital into the country without it causing social upheaval.  Like the announcement of Russian Miner Coin, his move by the NSD is just another building block in the foundation of a more resilient Russian financial system to better coordinate the flow of capital and smooth the development of the chain of production.

This, in turn, limits the effects of U.S. sanctions.  Once the market comes to the conclusion that Russia treats capital better than the U.S. does, the current trickle will become a torrent.  And Russia has to be ready to handle this.

Diversifying into the blockchain is one of those important avenues.

Reprinted with permission from Russia Insider.

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The Best First Gun

Fri, 08/18/2017 - 01:01

With the state of the country as it is, I recently had a couple of friends approach me for my take on where to start in the world of firearms. As they put it, they didn’t want to be stocking years of canned good and toilet paper, but they do want to be ready for the far more day-to-day situations they might find themselves in.

They were putting aside some food and water for disasters and whatnot, but they were lost when it came to guns. They found websites that were supposed to help, but they trusted me for some silly reason.

As I wanted to be a good friend, I told them sure, I’d help, but then I stopped short.

I remembered when someone told me where to start, what type of gun I should first pick up, and I began wondering if that was really the right advice.

“Get a 12-guage,” I was told. “You can use it for hunting and self-defense. It’s the perfect gun.”

Of course, I didn’t do that, but I considered it sound advice.

But I don’t anymore. Not for most people, anyway. Instead, I stay get a handgun in a caliber such as 9mm, .40, or .45 ACP for semi-autos or .38 or bigger for revolvers.

Yes, everything above said about the 12-guage shotgun is true. You can swap out barrels on most and use it to hunt pretty much everything, especially in my neck of the Southwest Georgia woods. In fact, there are some things that can only really be hunted well with a shotgun.

The thing is, what if you don’t give a darn about hunting?

For many people who can be termed “preppers”—those who are preparing for disaster—hunting is a key part of any long-term strategy. The thing is, let’s be realistic. The odds are good that no prepper alive today will ever need their long-term strategy.

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CNN Calls Anyone Who Disagrees With Them

Fri, 08/18/2017 - 01:01

Jennifer Lawrence, who came out in 2015 and said that if Trump became President it would be the “end of the world” has finally come out and said our  politically polarized country needs to come together because “we can’t continue this divide and anger.”

“There needs to be a bridge,” she told in an interview with Vogue Magazine. “There are issues affecting us as human beings, not as liberals and not as Republicans. We have to protect the foundation of this country, and acceptance.”

The violent events of the White Supremacist rally in Charlottesville, Virginia, illustrated men brandishing torches to Nazi insignia and camouflage-clad heavily-armed men who looked like soldiers ready for the battlefield. The men appearing to be soldiers were members of armed militia organizations, who say they went to Charlottesville to provide order at the protest. The hatred building up on both sides is escalating out of control. The White Supremacist who drove a car into a crowd is just an example of this hatred that is rising. The more each side responds to the other only ensures that the violence will continue to escalate. It is by no means just the alt-right who has formed militias.

The left has also formed armed militias which promote violent class warfare so if you hate someone who has more than you, that’s OK – you are not a racist or fascist, just Marxist. The left are anti-rich and are Marxists seeking to as always confiscate the wealth and subjugate others (see Redneck Revolt). So they are fair, it does not matter your religion or race, if you have more than them you are evil. This view is preached by politicians all the time, yet is somehow just fine.

This stupid rhetoric has got to stop. I have been warning our model is forecasting tremendous civil unrest fostered by the economic downturn. The New York demonstrators keep accusing Trump of Fascism and Racism outside Trump Tower demanding all business leaders resign from working at all with the White House or they will boycott and threaten them with violence. And this will do something good for the country or New York?  The left are continuing to attribute the action of White Supremacists to Trump further dividing the nation.

The crazy left seem to have their minds filled with slogan propaganda for they clearly do not even remotely understand what Fascism actually is and this ban on Muslims from six countries is not racism since Muslim is a religion not a race. Trump has not argued against any race in this country and Mexicans are not a separate race either. It does not matter. You cannot engage in any reasonable discourse. CNN, which is becoming the greatest threat to civilization spreading discontent internationally, will never recant or show an honest debate of the entire subject. CNN is too busy making money and too greedy to see what they are doing is creating the foundation for civil war. CNNhas become an extremely dangerous propaganda machine abandoning impartial news broadcasting.

At Armstrong Economics we have ALL races on our staff and we HAVE Muslim employees that travel here to the States with no problem since they are not from the six countries on the terrorist list. So it is difficult to comprehend what exactly it is that the CNN followers are so angry about if it is not plainly that Hillary lost and they just hate rich people they define as anyone who has more than they do. These conflicting views and rhetoric of groups on the left are tearing the country apart. It is their demand that everyone resign from Trump’s advisory groups that only enrage the opposition. Such demands are outrageous and they seem to use any issue to try to just suspend government until the next Presidential election come 2020. Any issue is being used against Trump and that is just enraging more people further dividing the nation.

Jennifer Lawrence is at least addressing the middle ground but nobody seems to listen. Trust me, then you will see serious violence in the streets during 2020. I would not go near any city hosting the Democrats or Republicans in 2020. I will tell you now – stay far away.

Fascism is an authoritarian nationalism, that is characterized by dictatorial power, forced suppression of opposition, and control of industry and commerce. I do not understand how anyone can claim Trump is a fascist. CNN, of course, keeps trying so desperately to create civil unrest. They have come out and said with a headline “Alt-right? Don’t be afraid to call them fascists.” We simply have to stop these stupid labels. That is the first think we have to do to try to restore some civility.

In London, we have the Telegraph coming out really against CNN with the headline: “Fascism is not Conservatism, and conservatives must make that clear.” I really question what is going on at CNN. It is not the reliable news source, it is becoming a hateful and vindictive network that is trying to create civil unrest. If Trump were truly a Fascist, he should send in troops and shut down CNN. That would be a good fascist move.

Let’s make no mistake here. The White Supremacist rally is taking place now because the standard of living has been diminishing with rising tax levels that reduce the disposable net income of people. That is the root cause of why such rallies take place now in opposition to the leftist rallies that erupted when Trump was elected setting cities on fire – not quite nonviolent. This is all building to a place we do not want to think about.

The White Supremacist movement in the South is also a long-standing resentment of blaming the blacks for their loss in the Civil War. Slave labor in the United States was first composed of whites – not blacks. They were criminals sold to plantation owners as indentured servants from British courts. The British legal system was so corrupt anyone for the slightest offense even stealing an apple was arrested and sold into Indentured servitude, all to profit the government destroying families. As Christopher Hibbert reported in his book, Roots of Evil (1963), the sentence imposed by the judge read:

 “Because you have committed this offence, the sentence of the court is that you shall no longer be burdened with the support of your wife and family. You shall be immediately removed from a very bad climate and a country overburdened with people to one of the finest regions of the earth where demand for human labour is every hour increasing and where it is highly probable you may ultimately regain your character and improve your future.” (Roots of Evil, p145)

When the Revolution broke out, that supply of labor ended. It was being supplement by blacks being serviced by the Dutch from Africa. The Civil War did not begin as a racist issue, to those in the South it was a blow to them economically removing their workforce. The hatred arose post-Civil War as many blamed the blacks for the reason there was a war when the issue was really human rights regardless of their color. It was the religious right who rose up on the North against the Southern Democrats at that time. The issue split the Northern politics resulting in Abraham Lincoln becoming the first Republican President.  People will often blame others for their loss rather than accept responsibility themselves. This is why the racism took hold in America in contrast to Europe.

Jennifer Lawrence was against Trump, but she sees that this anger is festering. This is what concerns me that as the economy gets worse and governments keep raising taxes exploiting people reducing their standard of living, tensions will rise. This is manifesting in White Supremacists who have not risen up in mass since the 1960s and now we have armed leftist militia groups cheering class warfare. From the 1950 Maple Shade Township incident where Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. was confronted by a bartender who refused to serve him and his friends, it will be 72 years when we reach 2022. This trend will continue to rise and it is being driven by the deteriorating economic landscape under the surface.

Reprinted with permission from Armstrong Economics.

The post CNN Calls Anyone Who Disagrees With Them appeared first on LewRockwell.

Miracle in Syria

Fri, 08/18/2017 - 01:01

AMMAN JORDAN – I haven’t seen many miracles in my decades of travel around the globe, particularly not in the strife-torn Mideast.

But last week I participated in a real miracle in Jordan as the splendid Four Paws International group staged a daring rescue of 13 wild animals trapped in the wartime hellhole of Aleppo, Syria.  It appeared to be a mission impossible.

Syria has been torn apart for the past six years by a bloody civil war that has killed over 400,000 people and reduced many parts of this beautiful country to ruins.  Half the population has become refugees.  The ancient northern city of Aleppo, Syria’s largest, was laid waste.

Just outside Aleppo lies a wrecked 40-acre amusement park cum zoo that once held hundreds of imprisoned wild animals to entertain children.  The animals were abandoned in their cages in the midst of constant gunfire and shelling.  Many were killed; the rest were left to starve to death or die of thirst.  Some starving Syrians shared their meager rations with the animals.

No one else cared about these abandoned creatures that included five lions, two tigers, two Asian black bears, two hyenas and two Husky dogs.

But the Vienna-based Four Paws Charity did, and so did I.  Four Paws had rescued a majestic lion named Simba and a charming honey-colored bear named Lula from Iraq’s abandoned Mosul zoo. Both had been starving.  I agreed to sponsor much of the rescue operation in Aleppo.

I spent a morning in the New Hope Refuge outside Amman, Jordan, presided over by Jordan’s Princess Alia, the king’s sister.  Over lunch, she showed remarkable compassion and understanding for wild animals.

Previously, Four Paws, led by its veterinarian, Dr. Amir Khalil, had rescued numerous starving or sick animals from the ghastly zoo in Gaza, Palestine.

Last week, a security team engaged by Four Paws International finally entered war-ravaged Aleppo which is besieged by feuding jihadist bands supported by competing outside powers that include al-Qaida and even Israel.   Throw in Kurds, Turks, the Syrian government, Iranians, Hezbollah and the US for a total madhouse – and a very dangerous one.

Risking their lives, the security team managed to get around the jihadists and then into the Aleppo zoo.  Over two trips, the thirteen remaining animals were coaxed into cages, then lifted onto flatbed trucks.  Then the convoy headed for the Turkish border.  This was the second attempt.  A previous one had been held at the border, then forced to turn back.

The daring rescue team had to negotiate with the bands of trigger-happy jihadists surrounding them.  A team of well-armed ‘security consultants’ came in to guard the convoy escaping from Aleppo.   There was talk that the Israeli army might come to aid the animals, or a Turkish-backed militia.   In any event, the little mercy convoy finally got to the Turkish border under the cover of darkness.

But the gate leading into Turkey was locked.  Four Paws, with the help of Turkish volunteers, managed to talk the guards into opening it – yet another small miracle.

The animals were then driven for over 24 hours to an animal sanctuary near Bursa, south of Istanbul.  There, one of the tigers, an imposing male that I named Sultan, went into cardiac arrest.  Another wonderful veterinarian, Dr. Frank Goeritz, got into his cage and managed to bring him back to life, warning his aides ‘leave the gate open in case he wakes up.’  Sultan was saved.

Wheels had to be cut off the cages to fit them into a commercial aircraft.  Finding the right tool to do this in the middle of the night in Istanbul was another challenge.

After long delays, the mercy flight finally got to Amman where we met them at 5:30 am.  Four Paws director Heli Dungler was waiting with us.  Thanks to the patronage of Princess Alia we got the animals through border controls and then onto flat-bed trucks for a two hour journey north to the al-Ma’wa animal refuge near the ancient Roman city of Jerash.  Drivers on the road could not believe their eyes as our convoy of big predators rolled by.

After a labor of Hercules, the heavy cages were unloaded from the trucks and the 13 new residents were gently introduced into their new enclosures.  The animals were of course confused, exhausted and testy, but we were thrilled that our wards were finally safe in their new homes.

We humans were also exhausted, but elated. I had slept no more than a few hours for days and was groggy from jet lag and fatigue.  But Four Paws had achieved the impossible and shone a beacon of humanity into the boiling darkness of Syria’s civil war.

As a final sign of good karma, lioness Dana gave birth to a feisty little girl who begins her life in a far better place.

The post Miracle in Syria appeared first on LewRockwell.

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