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TBR News August 10, 2018

Aug 10 2018

The voice of him that crieth in the wilderness, Isaiah 40:3-8 

Washington, D.C. August 10, 2018:”We are living in most interesting, and often very depressing times. The Chief Executive is an obvious eccentric but very malicious. The media is divided between genuine news reporting and insane fantasies concocted by those who belong in institutions, wrapped in wet sheets in a bathtub. The planet is over-populated and, as Calhoun points out in his article on rat overpopulation, this leads to mindless violence on the part of the inmates. Washington is infested with legions of the unbalanced who scream for war against anyone who cannot fight back and all this negativity produces is unity in others against American depredations. Those who cause this can take their ample bribe monies and go to live in Antigua. They can search for the vanished remains of Natalie Holloway or search for huge amounts of gold buried somewhere in the vacinity by German U boat crews during the Second World War. Fantasy had replace reality and the United States is rapidly turning into a fractious mental institution.”

 

The Table of Contents

  • Omarosa says Trump is a racist who uses N-word – and claims there’s tape to prove it
  • Three Reasons Why ‘Fire and Fury’ Won’t Work With Iran
  • How Bad Are Things for the GOP? A Democratic House Candidate Got 30,000 Write-In Votes in Michigan
  • Beware the Slippery Slope of Facebook Censorship
  • Is your mobile phone damaging your brain?
  • New EU data law forces firms to ban WhatsApp, Snapchat from phones
  • Latest sanctions against Russia show Trump not in control of his administration

 

Fakes and Frauds

  • Were Enormous Pyramids Just Discovered In Antarctica?

Omarosa says Trump is a racist who uses N-word – and claims there’s tape to prove it

Former Apprentice contestant and ex-White House adviser writes in new memoir that she witnessed ‘truly appalling things’

August 10, 2018

by David Smith in Washington

The Guardian

Donald Trump is a “racist” who has used the “N-word” repeatedly, Omarosa Manigault Newman, once the most prominent African American in the White House, claims in a searing memoir.

The future US president was caught on mic uttering the taboo racial slur “multiple times” during the making of his reality TV show The Apprentice and there is a tape to prove it, according to Manigault Newman, citing three unnamed sources.

Trump has been haunted from around the time of his election in 2016 by allegations that outtakes from the reality TV show exist in which he is heard saying the N-word and using other offensive language.

In her book, Unhinged, a copy of which was obtained by the Guardian ahead of its publication next week, the former Apprentice participant  insists that the reports are true, although she does not say she heard him use the word herself.

She also claims that she personally witnessed Trump use racial epithets about the White House counselor Kellyanne Conway’s husband George Conway, who is half Filipino. “Would you look at this George Conway article?” she quotes the president as saying. “F**ing FLIP! Disloyal! Fucking Goo-goo.”

Both flip and goo-goo are terms of racial abuse for Filipinos.

Critics have previously questioned Manigault Newman’s credibility and are likely to accuse her of seeking revenge against the administration after her abrupt dismissal last December.

At the time, she writes, she felt a “growing realization that Donald Trump was indeed a racist, a bigot and a misogynist. My certainty about the N-word tape and his frequent uses of that word were the top of a high mountain of truly appalling things I’d experienced with him, during the last two years in particular.”

Recalling her sudden and unceremonious departure, she writes: “It had finally sunk in that the person I’d thought I’d known so well for so long was actually a racist. Using the N-word was not just the way he talks but, more disturbing, it was how he thought of me and African Americans as a whole.”

Trump hosted NBC’s The Apprentice from 2004-2015 before running for the presidency and still likes to laud his high ratings.

His insurgent election campaign was rocked in October 2016 by the release of an Access Hollywood tape in which he bragged about grabbing women “by the pussy”. The media firestorm prompted Bill Pruitt, a producer on the first two seasons of The Apprentice, to tweet that there were “far worse” tapes of Trump behind the scenes of the show.

Further allegations emerged that Trump had used the N-word in the recordings. Then, following the New York property tycoon’s shocking victory over Hillary Clinton, the actor and comedian Tom Arnold claimed to have the video of Trump using racist language.

“I have the outtakes to The Apprentice where he says every bad thing ever, every offensive, racist thing ever,” Arnold told the Seattle-based radio station KIRO. “It was him sitting in that chair saying the N-word, saying the C-word, calling his son a retard, just being so mean to his own children.”

But Metro-Goldwyn-Mayer, which owns the rights to the reality TV show, and its British creator, Mark Burnett, have resisted pressure to release the footage because of “various contractual and legal requirements”.

Once close to Trump, Manigault Newman was among his most high-profile supporters during the election campaign and drew a top salary of $179,700 as director of communications for the White House office of public liaison. She held her April 2017 wedding at Trump’s luxury hotel, close to the White House.

Hers is the second memoir from a former Trump administration member, following that of the ex-press secretary Sean Spicer, but it was always expected to be less adulatory. This week the Daily Beast reported that she had secretly recorded conversations with the president and “leveraged” this while seeking a book deal. On Sunday she is due to appear on NBC’s flagship political show Meet the Press.

Some commentators have struck a note of scepticism about her book. Brian Stelter, senior media correspondent at CNN, wrote in an email newsletter: “Is former ‘Apprentice’ star Omarosa Manigault-Newman a reliable source of info about the Trump White House? Buckle up for debates about that in the coming week. Because she’s about to betray Trump in a new tell-all book.”

For its part, the White House has previously dismissed criticisms from her. In February the deputy press secretary, Raj Shah, said: “Omarosa was fired three times on The Apprentice and this was the fourth time we let her go. She had limited contact with the president while here. She has no contact now.”

In the book, she recalls how in late 2016 Trump’s team held a conference call and scrambled for how to respond to the tape but it never came out. Then a source from The Apprentice contacted her and claimed to be in possession of it. Trump was in office and Manigault Newman continued to investigate.

She continues: “By that point, three sources in three separate conversations had described the contents of this tape. They all told me that President Trump hadn’t just dropped a single N-word bomb. He’d said it multiple times throughout the show’s taping during off-camera outtakes, particularly during the first season of The Apprentice.”

Recalling that she appeared on the first season, Manigault Newman reflects: “I would look like the biggest imbecile alive for supporting a man who used that word.” She says she confided in the former White House communications director Hope Hicks, who said, “I need to hear it for myself,” and continued to ask her frequently about what progress she was making.

She believes that Hicks told the White House chief of staff, John Kelly, that Omarosa was close to getting her hands on the tape, and this gave him cause to terminate her job, though he found a different pretext.

Four months after her departure, she spoke by phone to one of her Apprentice sources. “I was told exactly what Donald Trump said – yes, the N-word and others in a classic Trump-goes-nuclear rant – and when he’s said them. During production he was miked, and there is definitely an audio track.”

Manigault Newman also recalls her interactions with Trump during the filming of The Celebrity Apprentice in late 2007 – a time when the little known Democrat Barack Obama was in the ascendent. “During boardroom outtakes, Donald talked about Obama often. He hated him. He never explained why, but now I believe it was because Obama was black.”

In January, Trump was widely condemned for reportedly dismissing Haiti, El Salvador and African nations as “shitholes”. Manigault Newman describes a similar experience that appears to support that account. When she told Trump that she was going to Haiti, she writes, he demanded: “Why did you choose that shitty country as your first foreign trip?”

He added: “You should have waited until the confirmations were done and gone to Scotland and played golf at [his course] Turnberry.”

In another damning passage, she describes his “broken outlook” and how “the bricks in his racist wall kept getting higher”, wondering if he did “want to start a race war”. She adds: “The only other explanation was that his mental state was so deteriorated that the filter between the worst impulses of his mind and his mouth were completely gone.”

The book comes days after Trump faced renewed allegations of racism over his persistent descriptions of the congresswoman Maxine Waters as having a “low IQ” and CNN journalist Don Lemon as “the dumbest man on television”, as well as criticism of the basketball star LeBron James. This weekend marks the first anniversary of the white supremacist march in Charlottesville, Virginia, that erupted in deadly violence; the president claimed there were “very fine people on both sides”.

Elsewhere in Unhinged, published by Gallery Books, an imprint of Simon & Schuster, Manigault Newman takes aim at Trump’s sexism. Recalling more outtakes from The Apprentice, she says he asked personal questions about female contestants such as “What do you think she’s like in bed?” and “Do you think she’s sexy?” He allegedly asked male contestants: “Who you think would be better in bed between the two of them?”

The White House did not respond to a request for comment.

 

Three Reasons Why ‘Fire and Fury’ Won’t Work With Iran

August 3, 2018

by Scott Ritter

Truth Dig

On July 22, Secretary of State Mike Pompeo addressed a crowd of Iranian-Americans, giving voice to a new American policy on Iran that seeks to undermine the legitimacy of the Iranian government. It would also strangle Iran’s economy through the reimposition of economic sanctions that had been set aside when Iran and five other Western nations, including the United States, came to an agreement in 2015 over Iran’s nuclear program.

According to this agreement, the Joint Comprehensive Plan of Action, or JCPOA, Iran accepted sanctions on its nuclear program in exchange for the lifting of economic sanctions. When President Trump withdrew from the JCPOA in May, he promised to reimpose sanctions that had been approved by Congress, including those targeting Iran’s sale of oil. The goal of the Trump administration, Pompeo told the crowd, was to “get [Iranian oil] imports as close to zero as possible” by this November.

Pompeo’s address did not go over well in Tehran. Addressing a gathering of Iranian diplomats, Iran’s President Hassan Rouhani asked, “Is it possible that everyone in the region sells their oil and we stand idly by and watch? Do not forget that we have maintained the security of this waterway [Strait of Hormuz] throughout history. We have historically secured the route of oil transit. Do not forget it.”

Approximately 18.5 million barrels of oil a day transit through the Strait of Hormuz, a narrow channel of water separating Iran from Oman. The loss of this oil to the global economy would be devastating. On July 5, Rouhani commented on the American plan to shut down Iran’s oil imports, saying, “The Americans say they want to reduce Iranian oil exports to zero. … It shows they have not thought about its consequences.” While Rouhani had remained silent about what those consequences would be, Qasem Soleimani, the commander of the Quds Force of the Iranian Revolutionary Guards, made it clear that Iran would close the Strait of Hormuz to all oil traffic.

“America should know that peace with Iran is the mother of all peace, and war with Iran is the mother of all wars,” Rouhani said, warning the American president not to “play with the lion’s tail, this would only lead to regret.”

President Trump’s response, delivered via Twitter the next day, caught the attention of the world.

NEVER, EVER THREATEN THE UNITED STATES AGAIN OR YOU WILL SUFFER CONSEQUENCES THE LIKES OF WHICH FEW THROUGHOUT HISTORY HAVE EVER SUFFERED BEFORE. WE ARE NO LONGER A COUNTRY THAT WILL STAND FOR YOUR DEMENTED WORDS OF VIOLENCE & DEATH. BE CAUTIOUS!

On July 24, the Iranian Armed Forces chief of staff, Maj. Gen. Mohammad Bagheri, responded to Trump’s threats. “As the dominant power in the Persian Gulf and the Strait of Hormuz, [Iran] has been the guarantor of the security of shipping and the global economy in this vital waterway and has the strength to take action against any scheme in this region,” Bagheri said.

“As our president correctly pointed out, the enemies, particularly America, whose centers of interest are within reach of the visible and hidden defense forces of the Islamic Republic of Iran, should not play with the lion’s tail,” the Iranian general said, “because they will receive a strong, unimaginable and regrettable response of great magnitude in the region and the world.”

That same day, President Trump addressed a gathering of the Veterans of Foreign Wars, seemingly a perfect venue for offering a bellicose response to the Iranian threats of action. Instead, the president offered up a fig leaf of sorts. “We’ll see what happens,” Trump said, “but we’re ready to make a real deal, not the deal that was done by the previous administration, which was a disaster.”

The seesawing rhetorical game of threat and counterthreat being played by Trump seems reminiscent of a similar approach taken late last year and early this year with North Korea over its nuclear and ballistic missile programs. Last August, responding to North Korean threats to test missiles capable of reaching the United States, Trump had declared that North Korea “best not make any more threats to the United States,” saying that if North Korea disregarded him, “They will be met with fire and fury like the world has never seen.” Trump later went on to famously belittle North Korea’s leader, Kim Jong Un, as “little rocket man,” while Kim in turn responded by calling Trump a “dotard” and a “warmonger” whose true nature was that of a “destroyer of the world peace and stability.”

In June, Trump and Kim held a summit in Singapore, where they discussed the denuclearization of the Korean peninsula.

Many observers believe that Trump is reaching back to his North Korean playbook in engaging in the current hostile exchange with Iran. Iran, however, is not North Korea.

What follows are major reasons why Trump is wrong if he thinks Iran will accede to his demands that it renegotiate a nuclear agreement with the United States to replace the JCPOA.

Reason One: Iran Isn’t Breaking the Law

North Korea was in open violation of numerous U.N. Security Council resolutions regarding its nuclear and ballistic missile programs, and there was (and is) widespread concurrence that North Korea’s nuclear weapons program posed a clear and present threat to international peace and security. While Trump’s hostile rhetoric toward Kim Jong Un represented American policy only, he was backed up by a global consensus that the threat from North Korea’s nuclear arsenal was no longer acceptable. North Korea was on the wrong side of the law, and it knew it.

Iran, on the other hand, had successfully negotiated a nuclear agreement with the five permanent members of the United Nations Security Council, Germany and the European Union. Its nuclear program today operates in total conformity with the terms of that agreement. The Security Council had passed a resolution undoing the totality of the economic sanctions imposed on Iran because of its nuclear program. Trump withdrew from the JCPOA because of American domestic politics, not because Iran threatened international peace and security. As the United States moves to reimpose sanctions on Iran, one is struck by the number of nations rushing to its side to join in this endeavor: zero.

Simply put, there is no compelling narrative than can be crafted that has Iran walking away from the JCPOA.

Reason Two: Iran Doesn’t Have to Win to Win

A war between the United States and North Korea, while potentially devastating for the entire region, had only one sure outcome—total American victory (at a huge cost), and the absolute destruction of the North Korean regime. In short, if Kim Jong Un opted for war with the United States, he would be committing suicide—and taking millions of others down with him. Kim Jong Un is anything but suicidal. He built his arsenal of nuclear weapons for deterrence purposes, not to engage in a self-destructive acquisition of technology. North Korea’s ultimate goal has been to break free of the international isolation it has been subjected to; nuclear weapons were a way to secure that outcome. The Singapore Summit occurred  because of North Korean initiatives—the Olympic outreach, the meetings with South Korean leaders, and so on. Kim Jong Un was not compelled to go to Singapore—a meeting with an American president was always his ultimate objective.

The Iranian government does not trust the United States and has no desire to engage in diplomatic relations with the United States. This does not mean that the two nations cannot peacefully coexist—they can, and Iran desires as much. But throwing the possibility of a grand bargain with the United States on the table in exchange for Iran giving up its nuclear program is sheer fantasy. As such, any effort to compel Iran into diplomatic engagement by threatening it with war is doomed to fail. Iran learned the lessons of Hezbollah’s ongoing conflict with Israel, and in particular that of the 2006 war, all too well. To win the war, Hezbollah did not need to defeat Israel; it had only to make sure Israel did not defeat it. This is an ambition Iran readily aspires to—it can shut down the Strait of Hormuz, cripple the global economy and ride out any American military response. In the end, the United States will succumb to international pressure and search for a negotiated settlement, and Iran will emerge victorious simply because it survived. Iran would accept this outcome rather than surrender its hard-won diplomatic achievement regarding the JCPOA.

Reason Three: Religious Democracy

North Korea is an absolute dictatorship—Kim Jong Un need only gain the concurrence of his inner circle to move forward on ground-changing policy, such as improving relations with the United States. Even then, any voices of dissent can be—and indeed, have been—summarily silenced. Kim Jong Un has a constituency of one when it comes to getting his policies approved: himself.

Iran is a far more complex problem when it comes to making policy—an Islamic republic governed by a democratically elected executive and legislature whose decisions are subject to review by a theocracy that itself is governed by a constitution and held accountable, via elections, to the will of the people. While Iranian democracy has been openly mocked in the United States as a sham, the fact is that democratic processes have shaped the Islamic Republic of Iran since its founding. The current Supreme Leader, Ayatollah Ali Khamenei, has spoken of Iran as being a “religious democracy,” where the people’s participation in the government, expressed through the vehicle of elections, is indicative of the nation’s health (indeed, Iran’s 73.3 percent turnout in the presidential election of 2017, in which Hassan Rouhani won re-election, dwarfs the paltry 55.7 percent turnout in the U.S. presidential election of 2016 that put Donald Trump in office).

The JCPOA that was negotiated between Iran and the West was more than simply an expression of political will by the Iranian leadership—it was an expression of the will of the Iranian people, given voice through countless parliamentary debates and legitimized through repeated elections where the issue of Iran’s nuclear program factored in the balloting. The Iranian people would support its government refusing to bend a knee in the face of American threats; they would not support a government that surrendered their hard-won gains on the nuclear front, which the Iranian people suffered greatly to achieve.

Donald Trump lives in a transactional universe where everything can be dealt away. While this approach might work with New York City real estate and may even have limited application in international affairs, it fails where issues derived from intangible principles—something that cannot be monetized—are at stake. In Trump’s world, one can try to bribe North Korea with the promise of economic largesse or threaten NATO’s viability by placing a dollar value on continued membership. While the ulterior motives of North Korea agreeing—in principle, if not reality—to denuclearize, and NATO to increase its defense spending to 2 percent GDP per member, are probably far more complex than the zero-sum thinking that Trump’s transactional diplomacy suggests, the results are the same. But there can be no transactional diplomacy when the other side refuses to name a price, and Iran has made it clear that there is no price it is willing to accept to give up its nuclear program.

The danger here is that Trump doesn’t realize he is playing a losing hand. His bluff will be called by Iran (indeed, based upon Rouhani’s words, it has been called), but Trump will continue to throw chips into the pot until compelled to either reverse course and rejoin the JCPOA (unlikely), or force the issue and watch the United States enter a war with Iran it will not lose—but cannot win.

 

How Bad Are Things for the GOP? A Democratic House Candidate Got 30,000 Write-In Votes in Michigan

August 9, 2018

by Ryan Grim

The Intercept

In April, Michigan officials who oversee elections kicked Democrat Matt Morgan off the congressional ballot, leaving the Republican incumbent, Rep. Jack Bergman, to run unopposed in the general election.

That was the plan, at least, until primary day on Tuesday, when more than 30,000 Democratic voters cast write-in ballots in Michigan’s 1st Congressional District. That’s nearly eight times as many votes as Morgan needed to be resurrected and placed on the November ballot.

Morgan, a progressive Marine veteran, pulled off the successful turnaround without help from the national party or progressive organizations set up to support vets. Instead, he had filmmaker Michael Moore and a team of hundreds of volunteers who made sure voters knew that, even though there was nobody on the ballot, they could still vote for Morgan.

In Marquette County, in fact, Morgan got nearly as many votes as Bergman did. The county credited him with 4,388 votes to Bergman’s 4,522, even after disqualifying a chunk of votes.

The candidate was booted from the ballot based on a technicality: His petitions listed a Post Office box rather than a physical address. His campaign turned the petitions in on March 6. An official got back to the campaign on April 29, explaining the address snafu, and saying that they had until the end of the day to withdraw or they were likely to be disqualified, said Joe Vanderbosch, Morgan’s spokesperson.

They refused to withdraw, so the Michigan Board of State Canvassers booted Morgan. The campaign took the decision to the Michigan Court of Appeals  and lost in a 2-1 judgment. Instead of appealing further, the campaign turned to the write-in option instead. “We wouldn’t have ever chosen to do business this way, but when we look back on it, it has been a great opportunity,” Morgan told The Intercept. “It kicked our field program off, it incensed voters, it really turned people out.”

In order to make it onto the ballot, Morgan needed to win 5 percent of the total votes cast in the district for governor on the Democratic side, a figure that came to roughly 3,700 votes. His Marquette County total alone should qualify him for the ballot.

“It appears that Republican voter suppression in Michigan’s 1st Congressional District has failed in an historic way!” Moore wrote on Twitter. “Republicans on the election commission kicked the lone Democratic candidate off the ballot, so thousands of us mobilized.”

Making it through the November general election will be a more challenging task, though by no means impossible. Michigan’s 1st District has been on the Democratic Congressional Campaign Committee’s battle ground since 2017 (though Morgan said he has gotten little interest from the party so far). Bergman won comfortably in 2016 by 15 points in a district that the Cook Political Report says has a nine-point GOP advantage. Donald Trump won Michigan in 2016 by just over 10,000 votes.

The 25,000 square-mile district covers rural northern Michigan, and it was last represented by a Democrat in 2010, when Blue Dog Rep. Bart Stupak, House Democrats’ most outspoken anti-choice lawmaker, retired rather than face the tea party wave. Now, Morgan is running a progressive campaign, focused on dialing back American military interventions overseas and bringing about universal health care, rather than hewing to the center. He is backed by the progressive group Justice Democrats, which heavily supported Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez, and despite being pro-choice, he also has the endorsement of Stupak.

While many veterans who run for Congress tout their military experience in justifying a more aggressive or expansive foreign policy, Morgan said that one of his top concerns is repealing the post-9/11 authorization of the use of military force. Presidents have been using the AUMF, as it is known, for a decade and a half to justify new military commitments around the globe unrelated to its original purpose of waging war against the group responsible for the September 11 terrorist attacks.

“One of the biggest issues veterans are concerned about today is that, when I first deployed to Iraq in 2003, I was newly married and had no children. Today I have a 13-year-old son, and the idea that we are still deploying our kids overseas on an AUMF that was passed four years before he was born, and we’re now four years before he’s eligible to serve, is the despicable reality of where we are today,” said Morgan, a retired lieutenant colonel. “I’m running against a guy that touts the fact that he’s the highest-ranking military official elected to Congress. He wears his military service on his sleeve, but he cannot step forward and say our Congress needs to be in front of this.”

Morgan added that his campaign has not yet found support among Democratic groups who aim to get veterans elected. “I am deeply frustrated that the organizations supporting veterans have not done more to support my candidacy, and my sense is they’re standing back because I’m running against another veteran,” he said. “But I think it’s really important: Jack Bergman and I are not the same.”

Rep. Seth Moulton, a Massachusetts Democrat, has endorsed and funded a string of veterans across the country. He has had several conversation with Morgan, though he hasn’t yet endorsed him. (Moulton has endorsed a significant number of moderate to conservative candidates, but also some progressives; his spokesperson said Moulton has no ideological litmus test.)

Morgan said the number one issue he hears about on the campaign trail is health care. When he explains his own experience with single-payer health care in the military and argues that Medicare should be expanded to cover everyone, he said, he rarely finds any objections from voters. “The only people opposing that are the lobbyists in Washington. I do not see Americans in Michigan opposing the idea of Medicare coverage. They want it fixed and the price tag isn’t keeping them up at night,” he said.

He has also been asked about about whether he would support California Rep. Nancy Pelosi to be Democratic leader in the next Congress, he said. His response is that it is time for new leadership. The values of the people in his district in Michigan’s Upper Peninsula are the same as those of the people in New York’s 14th District, where Ocasio-Cortez won her primary, he said, and they’re ready for something different. He added, “It’s time for a new generation of leadership in the Democratic Party. Candidates like me may not look like the candidate in NY-14, but we all share progressive values,” he said.

 

Beware the Slippery Slope of Facebook Censorship

The social network is too big and broken to properly function, and these “fixes” will only create more problems

August 2, 2018

by Matt Taibbi

The Rolling Stone

You may have seen a story this week detailing how Facebook shut down a series of accounts. As noted by Politico, Facebook claimed these accounts “sought to inflame social and political tensions in the United States, and said their activity was similar — and in some cases connected — to that of Russian accounts during the 2016 election.”

Similar? What does “similar” mean?

The death-pit for civil liberties is usually found in a combination of fringe/unpopular people or ideas and a national security emergency.

This is where we are with this unsettling new confab of Facebook, Congress and the Trump administration.

Read this jarring quote from Sen. Mark Warner (D-VA) about the shutting down of the “inauthentic” accounts:

“Today’s disclosure is further evidence that the Kremlin continues to exploit platforms like Facebook to sow division and spread disinformation… I also expect Facebook, along with other platform companies, will continue to identify Russian troll activity and to work with Congress…”

This was in a story in which Facebook stated that it did not know the source of all the pages. They might be Russian, or they might just be Warner’s idea of “sowing division.” Are we comfortable with that range of possibilities?

Many of the banned pages look like parodies of some paranoid bureaucrat’s idea of dangerous speech.

A page called “Black Elevation” shows a picture of Huey Newton and offers readers a job. “Aztlan Warriors” contains a meme celebrating the likes of Geronimo and Zapata, giving thanks for their service in the “the 500 year war against colonialism.”

And a banned “Mindful Being” page shared this, which seems culled from Jack Handey’s Deep Thoughts bit:

“We must unlearn what we have learned because a conditioned mind cannot comprehend the infinite.”

Facebook also wiped out a “No Unite The Right 2” page, appearing to advertise a counter-rally on the upcoming anniversary of the violence in Charlottesville, Virginia.

Facebook was “helped” in its efforts to wipe out these dangerous memes by the Atlantic Council, on whose board you’ll find confidence-inspiring names like Henry Kissinger, former CIA chief Michael Hayden, former acting CIA head Michael Morell and former Bush-era Homeland Security chief Michael Chertoff. (The latter is the guy who used to bring you the insane color-coded terror threat level system.)

These people now have their hands on what is essentially a direct lever over nationwide news distribution. It’s hard to understate the potential mischief that lurks behind this union of Internet platforms and would-be government censors

As noted in Rolling Stone earlier this year, 70 percent of Americans get their news from just two sources, Facebook and Google. As that number rises, the power of just a few people to decide what information does and does not reach the public will amplify significantly.

In a way, this is the other shoe dropping after last week’s much-publicized brouhaha over Infowars lunatic Alex Jones. Jones had four videos removed from YouTube and had his Facebook page banned for 30 days, though he seemed to find a way around that more or less instantly.

These moves were celebrated across social media, because who doesn’t hate Alex Jones?

The complainants in the Jones case included parents of Sandy Hook victims, who have legitimate beef with Jones and his conspiratorial coverage. The Infowars reports asserting the grieving parents were green-screen fakes were not just demonstrably false and rightfully the subject of a defamation suit, but also seemingly crossed a separate line when they published maps and addresses of family members, who experienced threats.

When Jones and his like-minded pals cried censorship and bias, they came across as more than a little disingenuous. After all, right-wingers have consistently argued on behalf of the speech rights of big corporations.

Conservative justices have handed down rulings using the First Amendment to hold back regulation of big tobacco and the gun industry, and to justify unlimited campaign spending. Citizens United was a crucial moment in the degradation of the First Amendment, essentially defining corporate influence as speech.

As many pointed out last week, the Jones ban was not a legal speech issue – not exactly, anyway. No matter how often Jones yelped about “Hitler levels of censorship,” and no matter how many rambling pages he and his minions typed up in their “emergency report” on the “deep state plan to kill the First Amendment,” it didn’t change the objectively true fact their ban was not (yet) a First Amendment issue.

The First Amendment, after all, only addresses the government’s power to restrict speech. It doesn’t address what Facebook, Google, YouTube and Twitter can do as private companies, enforcing their terms of service.

So it’s true, there was no First Amendment issue with the Jones ban. But that’s the problem.

The pre-Internet system for dealing with defamatory and libelous speech was litigation, which was pretty effective. The standard for punishment was also very high. In the 1964 Supreme Court case New York Times v. Sullivan — the bedrock case for libel law involving a public figure — the court went out of its way to make sure that complainants needed to prove reckless or knowing disregard for fact.

Among other things, the court worried that absent such a tough legal standard, outlets would play it too safe with speech, and “make only statements which ‘steer far wider of the unlawful zone.’”

This mostly worked. Historically there were few analogs to Infowars that got anything like wide distribution because of the financial threat, which scared publishers most of all. In order to have power to distribute widely you needed resources, but you put those resources at risk if you defamed people.

That all changed with digital media. Way back in 1996, when mastodons roamed the earth and people used dial-up to connect to the Internet, Congress passed the Communications Decency Act. It contained the following landmark language:

“No provider or user of an interactive computer service shall be treated as the publisher or speaker of any information provided by another information content provider.”

Essentially this meant that Internet providers wouldn’t be treated like news organizations. In the eyes of the law, they were less like CBS or Random House than they were bookstores or newsstands.

The rule allowed platforms to grow exponentially without the same fear of litigation. Companies like Facebook and Google became all-powerful media distributors, and were able to profit from InfoWars-style programs without having to be liable

This led to the flowering of so much obnoxious speech that the First Amendment acquired a reputation as a racist con, and online media distributors, instead of being sued themselves as publishers, began to be viewed as potential restorers of order, beneficent censors.

Now, at a moment of crisis and high political tension, the public seems unable to grasp the gravity of allowing the government or anyone else to use that power.

It is already a scandal that these de facto private media regulators have secret algorithmic processes that push down some news organizations in favor of others. Witness the complaints by outlets like Alternet, Truthdig and others that big platforms have been de-emphasizing alternative sites in the name of combating “fake news.”

But this week’s revelation is worse. When Facebook works with the government and wannabe star-chamber organizations like the Atlantic Council to delete sites on national security grounds, using secret methodology, it opens the door to nightmare possibilities that you’d find in dystopian novels.

The sheer market power of these companies over information flow has always been the real threat. This is why breaking them up should have long ago become an urgent national priority.

Instead, as was obvious during the Senate hearing with Mark Zuckerberg earlier this year, politicians are more interested in using than curtailing the power of these companies. The platforms, for their part, will cave rather than be regulated. The endgame here couldn’t be clearer. This is how authoritarian marriages begin, and people should be very worried.

 

Is your mobile phone damaging your brain?

Ever since the mobile phone entered our lives in the new millenium, anxieties about its ill effects have abounded. But what do we actually know about the health risks of mobile phones?

August 10, 2018

by Charli Shield

DW

The science on smartphones is far from settled. Brain cancer, nerve damage, and various tumors have all been touted as potential negative consequences of regular mobile phone use.

While no solid evidence has been found to prove it’s dangerous, this doesn’t mean there is no cause for concern.

What about radiation?

A lot of the concern around the health and safety risks of mobile phones centres on the radiation emitted. Mobile phones release radiofrequency energy, or radio waves, that can be absorbed by bodily tissues. In the past, studies have linked heavy mobile phone use to certain brain tumors.

But according to Martin Röösli, head of the Environmental Exposures and Health Unit at the Swiss Tropical and Public Health Institute, the type of radiation emitted by a mobile phone is nothing to be alarmed about.

It is a very low energy radio frequency radiation – the same found in TV and radio signals. “It’s a non-ionizing radiation, so it’s not radioactive or x-ray,” Röösli told DW.  “No direct DNA damage can happen with this type of radiation. It’s impossible.”

As for the link between this kind of radiation and cancer, Röösli says he “does not see such indications.” Often these studies are “retrospective” and rely on people remembering their phone use, which people with tumors tend to over-report, Röösli told DW.

“We haven’t seen an increase in cancer rates in the last two decades, which you would certainly expect if there was a major risk in mobile phone use,” he added.

Likewise, Frank de Vocht, reader in Epidemiology and Public Health at the University of Bristol, told DW it’s unlikely the dangers of mobile phones have simply gone under the radar.

“If the use of mobile phones would increase the risk of something significantly like, say, cancer, this would have been picked up much more clearly with the scientific methods we have now; for example how the risks of tobacco smoking on lung cancer are straightforward to pick up.”

Wait, there’s more

But that doesn’t mean mobile phone radiation has no effect on the brain at all. Previous research has found evidence that it can change our brainwaves. And now, a new study co-authored by Röösli has found a link between mobile phone use and adverse effects on young people’s memory retention.

Swiss researchers studied 700 adolescents aged between 12 and 17; tracking their phone habits and getting them to complete memory tests. Over the course of a year participants had to fill out a questionnaire about their mobile phone habits, as well as answer questions about their psychological and physical health.

They then completed a series of computerized cognitive tests. Röösli said a unique feature of the study was the use of phone user data from mobile phone operators. That meant for every call made by the participants, the researchers “knew on which network it took place and how long it lasted.”

The study, published in Environmental Health Perspectives, found that one year’s worth of exposure to mobile phone radiation could have a negative effect on the development of memory performance in specific brain regions in adolescents. Here ‘exposure’ almost exclusively refers to phone calls.

“80 percent of the absorbed radiation comes from holding the phone to the head,” Röösli noted. Interestingly, they found the brain’s memory function was more vulnerable to the negative impact of radiation when the phone was held to the right hand side of the head. That’s where the areas of the brain related to memory are located.

“Basically what we saw was the higher the absorption of radiation [by the brain] the more likely the development of memory in one year wasn’t as good as those who didn’t absorb as much,” Röösli told DW. The researchers also emphasised that more research needs to be done to rule out other factors, including puberty, which could impact both mobile phone use and cognition.

As for other smartphone uses – sending text messages, taking photos, using apps –these involved “almost no [radiation] exposure to the brain.”

Should we change our behavior?

Despite the negative effects they did notice, Röösli described these as “very subtle.” But if you are concerned, the scientist points out that the radiation effect “can be easily minimised” by taking calls on the left side of your head, or using loudspeaker or headphones – “especially when the network quality is low.”

“This study shows that although there is probably an effect – on memory here – it is relatively small,” De Vocht told DW. “In my opinion the most important lesson from all these studies is that the use of mobile phones is not extremely dangerous, despite what some people may say.”

What both Röösli and De Vocht are concerned about, however, is not the potential biological effects of mobile phone use, but the behavioral changes seen in heavy mobile phone users. According to them, any percievable impacts from mobile phone radiation are far less pertinent than those that change the way people behave.

“There is convincing evidence that what resembles an ‘addiction to mobile phones’ negatively effects social interaction, mental health and wellbeing,” De Vocht said.

In 2015, Röösli co-authored a study that found adolescents who use their phones a lot – particularly after “lights out” – have disrupted sleeping patterns, and are “a lot more tired.” It’s this kind of research he thinks is “much more relevant from a public health perspective” when considering the health risks of mobile phone usage.

“That has nothing to do with radiation, it’s about behaviour.” Ultimately, Röösli said if radiation is having an effect on mobile phone users, “it’s not the big thing, at least at this point.”

New EU data law forces firms to ban WhatsApp, Snapchat from phones

Citing data privacy concerns, German auto parts maker Continental has banned WhatsApp and Snapchat from company-issued mobile devices. Will a second phone become the norm for firms, many of which rely on messenger apps?

June 6, 2018

by Benjamin Bathke

DW

German car parts supplier Continental has banned its 240,000 employees from using social media applications WhatsApp and Snapchat on company-issued mobile phones.

The new rule applies to the company’s entire global network and affects more than 36,000 mobile phones, Continental said on Tuesday from its headquarters in the northern German city of Hanover.

“We think it is unacceptable to transfer to users the responsibility of complying with data protection laws,” CEO Elmar Degenhart said. “This is why we are turning to secure alternatives.”

The move aims to protect “business interests, employees and business partners,” as the apps access private and therefore potentially confidential information — address book entries, for example — of uninvolved third parties, the company says.

Privacy has moved from a niche topic to one of the biggest headaches for top bosses as they scramble to comply with Europe’s new General Data Protection Regulation (GDPR), which governs how data collectors gather and use citizen’s information.

GDPR, which came into force on May 25, mandates that consumers have to be informed who is gathering their data such as name, address, email address and ID number, and that they must agree that it may be used.

Facebook-owned WhatsApp and Snapchat save users’ contact data, stored in their phones’ address books, and transfer the information to their own servers.

Currently, however, disabling the option to share one’s contact details limits the use of the app significantly. According to the GDPR, these regulations can lead to difficulties for companies like Continental, which in theory would have to ask each individual contact for their consent to transfer their data.

Different companies, different practices

In an interview with DW, the data protection ombudswoman for the German federal state of Schleswig Holstein, Marit Hansen, said the extent to which WhatsApp is GDPR-compliant must be assessed in detail.

“Regardless, companies must not pass on address book data without a legal basis or consent,” Hansen says, adding that all companies ought to regulate their business communications to avoid any risk that might arise through the sharing of personal data with third parties, regardless of whether the data concerns employees or clients.

Continental isn’t the only company listed on Germany’s stock exchange to resort to a ban of messenger apps, or similar measures.

Deutsche Bank, for instance, banned the usage of SMS, WhatsApp and other messenger services in January of 2017, citing documentation obligations for banks. Carmaker Volkswagen doesn’t allow chat apps for business use at all, instead relying on an internal messenger app. Competitor BMW only permits authorized apps on company phones; WhatsApp and Snapchat aren’t among them.

Others, like Germany’s largest airline Lufthansa, do allow chat apps for private usage. The separation, according to a company spokesperson, is technically feasible. “Business contacts are exclusively stored in the secured area of the device and cannot be utilized by social media apps.”

Hansen and other data protectionists have repeatedly warned of possible legal consequences of using WhatsApp on company phones. She has also pointed out that trade secrets could be at risk, for example when a foreign company gets access to customer data.

While WhatsApp didn’t comment, Snapchat publicly rejected the decision of tire giant Continental. “It is completely up to the user whether they wish to grant access to contacts in Snapchat,” a spokesperson of parent company Snap said. “If users do upload their contacts to their account they can stop syncing them and delete them at any time from within the app. We also do not store non-user contacts.”

Need for a second phone?

Ilona Klein, spokesperson of Germany’s Central Association of German Construction Companies (ZDB), called WhatsApp’s current data collection practice an “open flank,” particularly for small handicraft businesses that use WhatsApp on a daily basis. On construction sites, it is a standard practice to communicate via the app, Klein tells DW. Craftsmen also regularly use it to communicate with clients, for example to have them send images of spots in their homes that need repair.

A company that violates GDPR standards risks fines of up to €20 million ($23 million) or up to four percent of its annual global revenue.

Klein urged firms to stop using WhatsApp and resort to secure means of communication like email.

“Ultimately, private and professional use of mobile phones need to be separated consistently,” Klein says. Employees either need a second phone, or must delete WhatsApp from their existing one.

Echoing Klein, data protectionist Hansen thinks combining private and professional usage of company phones isn’t just “problematic” from a data protection perspective. It could also cause company bosses to neglect their control duties, if they cannot be assured of telecommunications privacy. Problems could also arise when business data is shared in a private context.

According to a survey by German digital association Bitkom of more than 1,000 German companies with at least 20 employees, more than one third (38 percent) use messenger apps like WhatsApp for their internal and external communication.

In a press release, Continental said it was prepared to “lift this ban,” provided WhatsApp and Snapchat “change the basic settings to ensure that their apps comply with data-protection regulations by default.” In a ‘privacy by default’ mode, the basic setting is such that the user doesn’t allow the app to store its data.

WhatsApp, which Facebook acquired in 2014 for roughly $22 billion, has more than 1.3 billion users worldwide.

 

Latest sanctions against Russia show Trump not in control of his administration

August 10, 2018

by F. Michael Maloof

RT

US President Donald Trump is not in control of his own administration, as evidenced by the latest round of sanctions imposed against Russia for the alleged involvement in the poisoning of the Skripals in the UK in March.

The sanctions came the same day that US Sen. Rand Paul, R-Ky., announced on a trip to Moscow that he had handed over a letter to Russian President Vladimir Putin from Trump calling for better relations between the two countries.

For that reason, the timing appears to be suspect, suggesting strongly that Trump has his own foreign policy while the Trump administration, comprised mainly of bureaucrats referred to as the Deep State, have their own. Right now, they appear to be in control, not President Trump, over his own administration, and it is having the adverse effect of further alienating Washington and Moscow.

The neocons, led by National Security Advisor John Bolton, along with Secretary of State Mike Pompeo and his United Nations ambassador Nikki Haley, comprise the Trump “war cabinet” ostensibly aimed at directing a harder line toward Syria, North Korea, Iran but also Russia.

Bolton, in particular, has been outspoken in calling for regime change in some of  these countries. Trump not so much so. In fact, he has said just the opposite. Nevertheless, their anti-Russian flair in Washington has breathed new life into the neocons who, along with the Democrats, Deep State and much of the mainstream media, have pushed the false narrative of collusion between Russia and Trump.

This persistent anti-Russian rant and repeated sanctions which have been imposed have had the effect of leading to further threats of sanctions for questionable reasons, raising the potential prospect of suspension of diplomatic ties.

Even at the height of the Cold War, relations between the US and Russia never reached such low depths as they have now. The latest sanctions affect primarily dual-use technologies which are civilian products with potential military applications. They include gas turbine engines, electronics and integrated circuits which will now be denied. Previous sanctions going back to the Obama administration, however, already imposed bans on many of these dual-use technologies.

In addition, the US has delivered an ultimatum, saying that if Russia does not give assurances within 90 days that it will no longer use chemical weapons and allow international inspectors to inspect its production facilities, further sanctions will be implemented. But Russia denies it used chemical weapons. Unlike the US, it destroyed its chemical weapons stockpile in accordance with international treaties.

Implementation of the sanctions stem from provisions of the Chemical and Biological Weapons Control and Warfare Elimination Act of 1991.

The legislation gave a 60-day window to begin implementation of sanctions after the Trump administration determined that the now-British citizen Sergei Skripal and his daughter Yulia were poisoned by a strain of the Novichok nerve-agent. The US came to that conclusion following an initial determination by the British government.

However, the US administration missed the deadline by more than a month. That prompted Rep. Ed Royce, R-Calif., chairman of the House Foreign Relations Committee, to write a letter to Trump some two weeks ago slamming the president for ignoring the deadline.

Curiously, the British government hasn’t implemented similar sanctions, although the US has. It may reflect the continued uncertainty among some British politicians and experts over the origin of the Novichok and concern with Britain’s trade dependency on Russia. But since the Americans opted to implement sanctions due to existing legislation, there was apparently no objection from London even though it initially implemented sanctions by kicking out Russian diplomats from the country.

Moscow, however, vehemently denied that it was involved in the poisoning of Skripal and his daughter. Novichok was created by Russian scientists during the Cold War but never used on the battlefield. Russian officials asked Britain for evidence of Russian involvement and called for a joint investigation to be conducted by the Kremlin and British governments.

The British government repeatedly turned down the offer, as did other Western members of the United Nations Security Council, the US and France, when Moscow sought such a joint investigation.

The US claimed that the information linking the poison to Russia was “classified.”

Strangely, a government research facility at Porton Down in Amesbury, not far from Salisbury where the alleged March poisoning took place, examined the strain of Novichok. Porton Down lab does work for British Defense Science and Technology Laboratory, run by the Ministry of Defense, and the Public Health England.

Results from the examination confirmed the poison was a form of Novichok but – importantly – could not determine where the poison had been created or who had used it. This development created further confusion and prompted disputes among politicians.

It is known that samples of Novichok have been in the hands of many NATO countries for years after the German foreign intelligence service, the Bundesnachrichtendienst, or BND, had reportedly obtained a sample from a Russian defector in the 1990s.

The formula was later shared with Britain, the US, France, Canada and the Netherlands, where small quantities of Novichok reportedly were produced in an effort to develop countermeasures. Porton Down labs similarly had received samples to study. Czech President Milos Zeman recently admitted that his country synthesized and tested a form of Novichok. Sweden and Slovakia also have the technical capability to produce the nerve agent, according to Russian officials.

All of this makes makes the issue as to why Britain, and even the US, never wanted to share samples taken from the poisoning of the Skripals with Moscow more concerning. Yet, they all went ahead in lock-step to condemn Moscow for the poisoning, without any evidence, suggesting a more sinister reason for lobbying increased sanctions against Russia with the goal of further isolating the country.

It reflects the need especially by the US to have a demon in an effort to justify its defense spending to bolster NATO up to the border of the Russian Federation in the form of a new containment policy that launched the Cold War in the first place.

With even further sanctions against Russia in the recently passed Defense Department Authorization Bill about to go into effect, it is becoming apparent that the allegations against Russia are politically-motivated, false flag allegations to be used as an excuse for a greater geostrategic reason — to contain Russia just as the Trump administration is increasingly finding its US-led unilateral world order being challenged more than ever.

The reason, however, isn’t due to anything that Moscow initiated but by Trump himself who isn’t in control of his own administration, and maybe never has been. Many of his campaign promises such as dropping out of the Joint Comprehensive Plan of Action, or Iranian nuclear agreement, the threat of sanctions against any company that trades with Iran, his tariff war with US allies are in conflict with each other, leading to increased world instability. At the same time, Trump talks about better relations with Russia, but the actions of his own administration in demonizing Moscow dictate otherwise.

It is clear that darker days are ahead for Moscow-Washington relations, given the conflicting policies of Trump which have become self-destructive and prompt a challenge to long-established US political and economic world dominance.

  1. Michael Maloof, former Pentagon security analyst.

 

Fakes and Frauds

Were Enormous Pyramids Just Discovered In Antarctica?

Viral images attempting to sell pyramid-shaped features as evidence of an ancient civilization in Antarctica show nothing but mountains.

August 24, 2017

by Alex Kasprak

Snopes

CLAIM: Recently discovered satellite photos from Google Earth show that an ancient civilization built pyramids in Antarctica 100 million years ago.

RATING: False

ORIGIN

Since at least 2016, a collection of pyramid-shaped mountains in the Ellsworth Range of Antarctica have been used by a variety of click-peddling websites to argue that there may have been an intelligent human civilization on the continent of Antarctica a hundred million years ago. A hundred million years ago, for the record, is roughly a hundred million years before modern homo sapiens sapiens actually evolved, give or take a couple 100,000 years. As many headlines pushing this story want you to understand, this would “change how we look at history forever.”

The most recent version of this story comes from a post filed to the “consciousness” section of new-age web site “Earth. We Are One” (EWAO), which suggests that a photograph from a mountain range first discovered in 1935 is now breaking news:

Recently, Google Earth satellite imagery discovered a constellation of three snow-covered pyramids in Antarctica. Scientists and researchers are, admittedly, rather taken aback. Two of the three pyramids are about 10 miles inland, while the third is directly near the coastline.

The implications? Well, this discovery could end up re-writing our entire history. No research has ever mentioned a civilization in Antarctica, much less one with the technological know-how to construct pyramids. So, how did these pyramids get there?

Without actually answering that question, EWAO then lists a litany of undeniably cool, but wholly irrelevant facts about the geologic history of Antarctica, even including some that are not completely incorrect:

Over millions of years, Antarctica has drifted from a position closer to the equator to its present perma-frozen location.

What EWAO describes here is plate tectonics — the foundational theory of modern geology that has been well accepted since the 1960s and was first presented as “continental drift” in the early 1900s. In fact, one of the first suggestions that Antarctica may have been warmer in the past came from the discovery of 250-million-year-old fossils of plants in Antarctica by British explorer Robert Falcon Scott during a 1912 expedition, which later provided support for the concept.

EWAO then unnecessarily cites a scientist at the British Antarctic Survey who (factually) stated that there was lush vegetation on the continent 100 million years ago. EWAO presumably does this so they can write the words “The British Antarctic Survey backs this up”, also presumably hoping that the reader wouldn’t catch on that the Survey was talking about long-established science rather than the complete redefinition of evolutionary history and wholesale rejection of the geologic and archeological records.

The final bit of supporting evidence for an ancient civilization capable of making 4,000-foot-tall structures (which, it should be noted, would be a remarkable feat given the fact that this would be ten times the height of the Great Pyramids of Giza) is information provided by a series of expeditions to Antarctica’s Lake Vida, which, in EWAO’s words, “discovered unexpected microbial lifeforms trapped under a 65-foot-thick sheet of ice [that] resemble descendants of microorganisms from much warmer climates”.

The discovery of these organisms was notable, given the extreme environment and their ability to reproduce once thawed, but not because of some purported resemblance to more temperate species of bacteria. One could make the equally factual argument that penguins share resemblance with animals from a warmer climate, because as birds they evolved from theropod dinosaurs that inhabited an ice-free Earth. Such an observation would be equally useless.

Despite the irrelevance of the allegedly supporting information provided, EWAO concludes:

About 100 million years ago, someone was building pyramids on the Antarctica that was then located at the equator.

Ignoring the fact that Antarctica has been in its present latitude for the past 100 million years (its most recent warm periods were caused by climatic factors, not tectonics), the question EWAO should have been answering is this: Why would a mountain look like a pyramid?

The answer to that question is that pyramidal peaked mountains, also called a horn (as in Matterhorn), are a feature of glaciated areas; they form from the convergence of glaciers that scour the sides of an existing landmass. This is a great explanation for the pyramid shaped mountains highlighted by EWAO, as they exist at the convergence of multiple ice sheets on a continent noted for its nearly 100 percent glaciated surface.

Therefore, we rank this claim as false because, as University of California, Irvine geology professor Eric Rignot told LiveScience in 2016: “This is just a mountain that looks like a pyramid.”

 

Future subjects, all proven by Resident Scientists!

  • Lost continent of Atlantis discovered off Bermuda
  • 911 caused by Tesla Death Ray
  • Earth’s center full of water and dead animals from Noah flood
  • All school shootings are Hollywood production
  • Planet X bearing down on Cleveland, Ohio
  • Huge crocodile eats two fishing boats in Gulf
  • Former President Obama born on Mars
  • Houston, Texas destroyed by Israeli atom bomb
  • Loch Ness Monster seen in Lake Erie
  • US paper money contains tracking devices
  • HAARP system created giant squirrls
  • Commercial toothpaste causes fatal (and messy) earwax explosions
  • Giant mosquitoes from Brazil attack Florida swimmers
  • Huge, 32 foot high, two-headed alien space mummy found in Peruvian cave
  • Portable radio discovered with mummy in Egyptian tomb, batteries dead
  • Mahatma Gandhi seen alive in San Francisco bar
  • Giant elk crushes cars on Louisiana freeway
  • Harvard University run by large lizards
  • The Antichrist buys home in Peoria, Illinois
  • Moon revealed as plastic alien spy base
  • John Wilkes Booth proven to be an Illuminati leader
  • Angry unicorn spears three Girl Scouts in Wetumka, Georgia
  • Brown bear in Seattle zoo gives birth to two-headed giraffe triplets
  • Recently discovered TF disease crippling U.S. Congressmen (editor’s note: TF stands for Terminal Flatulence)

 

2 responses so far

  1. SOZT
    As the world heads rapidly toward the time when the general populace becomes aware of Nibiru looming nearby and its pending passage, political and economic battles are erupting. These are seldom what they seem on the surface, seldom how they are described in the media or by the players, and never posed in the context of a Nibiru passage. Thus, the spasms and decisions made by Heads of State, the imposition of sanctions, and the adjustments to tariff agreements seem illogical and confusing. But insert Nibiru into the equation and it makes more sense.
    We have stated that Russia is demonized in the West not because it is a bad actor or even responsible but because it is viewed by the cover-up over Nibiru to be the source of an announcement
    http://www.zetatalk.com/newsletr/issue565.htm
    that Nibiru is real. We have also stated that the banks in the West, exemplified by the International Monetary Fund,
    http://www.zetatalk.com/newsletr/issue462.htm
    have sought to control and enslave many countries by their loans. This is at the heart of the New World Order
    http://www.zetatalk.com/newsletr/issue589.htm
    agenda. Bankruptcies are now resulting. Brazil, Argentina, Venezuela, Greece, and Turkey are recent casualties.
    Key to understanding the current economic wars is the cover-up over Nibiru. Thus Russia is falsely accused and Trump must maintain a posture of being tough on Russia in order to stay in power, politically. Putin understands this. Then there is the faltering New World Order agenda,
    http://www.zetatalk.com/newsletr/issue589.htm
    which is failing due to the presence of the BRICS system as an alternative to the Jewish banking system and secret court indictments against the Bush/Clinton/Soros Cabal for their voter fraud and terrorism support. The popularity of the enigmatic Q
    http://www.zetatalk.com/newsletr/issue614.htm
    shows that the populace is having their eyes opened to all of this.
    Meanwhile each country is being forced to stand on its own. Trump’s approach to level the economic field by tweaking tariffs has this aim – to make America great again. The US has once again become a manufacturing nation and is even oil independent. This was not a goal of the New World Order, who sought to drive the US to its knees economically and by Soros induced riots force the US to give up its guns so the citizenry could be controlled. Why is the issue of each country being independent important?
    After the Pole Shift, there will be winners and losers, sinking and rising land masses, countries suddenly thrust into polar regions, or inundated by rising seas. We have stated that all treaties will be broken, eventually. Paper money and all paper promises
    http://www.zetatalk.com/index/zeta156.htm
    will default and be worthless, the barter system taking its place. What will endure will be the ability of the people to grow food and to maintain a manufacturing industry. China and Russia have that, and Trump is making sure the US has that. All other agendas be damned.
    EOZT

  2. Planet X and “Sorcha Faal” are invented entities of the sort Jones stuffs his credulous readers with. How about a Giant Easter Bunny who eats small children?

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