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Author: scott lazarowitz

Unprofessional News Media, Hysterical Social Media, and False Narratives

You’ve probably heard about the viral video of the MAGA-hat-wearing Catholic school students supposedly taunting a Native American person at an event in Washington. The media, celebrities and social media were all condemning of the students, and their own school administrators also condemned them.

But it turned out, thanks to the posting of the full almost 2-hour video of the whole thing, that it was other people there who were taunting the students. The students had not done anything wrong. In fact, given that they in fact were the real targets of racist remarks and threats, they handled themselves well.

Tom Woods, who details the entire episode on his blog (so you don’t have to watch the video for nearly two hours), suggests that any parent whose kids find themselves in such a situation should get a lawyer, etc. I totally agree.

But we have the mainstream media who merely repeat propaganda based on a brief video excerpt and make accusations without any checking, without any further investigating.

Besides this episode and the viral nature of false accusations against and smearing of students merely wearing “MAGA” hats, more recently also was the BuzzFeed false accusation of Donald Trump allegedly directing Michael Cohen to lie to Congress.

Apparently the Mueller people publicly disputed BuzzFeed’s claim. But the media were all over the story, without any verification whatsoever.

And of course the recent New York Times story on the FBI’s viewing Trump as a “national security threat,” with the news media and social media eating all that up as well.

In the Times article, as Glenn Greenwald points out, it wasn’t until the ninth paragraph that it states, “No evidence has emerged publicly that Mr. Trump was secretly in contact with or took direction from Russian government officials. An F.B.I. spokeswoman and a spokesman for the special counsel’s office both declined to comment.”

No evidence has emerged…”! Hmmm.

But apparently we can’t expect the news media to read that far into an article, so it seems. We really need alternative media now, for “All the News That’s Fit to Print.”

And regarding the Russia-collusions story and the Mueller investigation, I have tried to get the whole story out there, or, the story behind the story, as Larry Glick used to say.

News and Commentary

Ray McGovern wonders if James Comey was trying to use the notorious Steele dossier as “leverage” (i.e. like J. Edgar Hoover style “leverage”).

Declan McCullagh writes that a judge has ruled that police cannot require people to unlock their own iPhones with thumb or iris.

Naomi Mathew on Lysander Spooner, the anarchist who single-handedly took on the U.S. post office.

And Arjun Walia on Anderson Cooper caught spreading fake information and lying about vaccines live on CNN.

Enough of the Control Freaks and the Covetous (the Ocasio-Cortezes, Tucker Carlsons, et al.)

Sometimes all this is so frustrating. That is, advocating for freedom. The free America that the Revolutionaries founded has slowly and gradually become a place in which criminals and parasites can rob their neighbors and get away with it.

The biggest mistake committed by the early Americans was to create an apparatus with compulsory control to rule over the people.

And now we have generations of brainwashed serfs who comply obediently, and really believe that the racket in Washington is something that shouldn’t be completely dismantled.

On the Hill there is a poll showing that majorities of Americans support raising the top income tax rate to 70%, including people identifying as Republicans.

Meanwhile, appearing on 60 Minutes was Congresswoman Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez who, regardless of her denials, promotes the socialism of Soviet Union, Cuba and Venezuela and not the “socialism” of Sweden, Norway and the U.K. The latter group are capitalist countries (private ownership of the means of production) with a welfare state, not socialist countries.

Now, a lot of people, for example this Fox News commentator, think that Ocasio-Cortez is the voice of an ignorant generation. But the above poll suggests that much of the entire population is ignorant of economics and history.

Regarding her proposal to tax high incomes at 70%, Ocasio-Cortez said, “That doesn’t mean all $10 million are taxed at an extremely high rate, but it means that as you climb up this ladder you should be contributing more.”

Oh, yeah? “Contributing” to what? Most of what the federal government is unconstitutional, that is, unauthorized by the U.S. Constitution.

And “contribute” usually means to pay into something voluntarily. But who would voluntarily pay to keep U.S. armed forces overseas? Such invasions and occupations mainly have resulted in provoking foreigners into retaliatory actions against us, and trillions wasted.

And who would voluntarily pay into a scheme of molesters, gropers and thieves, also known as the TSA?

The list goes on and on, totaling more than 4 trillion dollars, much of it needless, useless crap.

But Ocasio-Cortez says that “there’s a lot of people more concerned about being precisely, factually, and semantically correct than about being morally right.”

Morally right? Now, there’s a knee-slapper. On the social spending side, Ocasio-Cortez wants to spend other people’s money, stolen from their paychecks and other income, on “free health care, free education,” free stuff, free this or that.

I think she’s one of those True Believers who really believes that everyone has a “right to health care,” or a “right to education,” even though there are people who do not take care of themselves, eat terrible foods, drink like fish or smoke like chimneys. Those people, quite frankly, should not be considered to have a “right” to force a doctor to have to treat them.

Redistribution of wealth schemes, especially when made involuntary on the people, encourage people to not take care of themselves. Why bother being conscientious with eating habits or avoiding poisonous drugs and booze when someone will be right there to involuntarily treat you, and it’s all paid for?

Unfortunately, as those polls suggest, conservatives have been bitten by the tax-theft bug as much as “liberals,” for decades now. The envy and covetousness is equally spread on the left and right, and all points between, especially since so-called conservatives caved on FDR’s New Deal and more so LBJ’s “Great Society,” with Social Security, Medicare, etc.

Tucker Carlson of Fox News is himself quite ignorant of economics and history, and has been showing an anti-capitalistic covetousness in his talks recently. Shame, shame, shame on anti-free market “conservatives.”

Carlson feels the Bern, last August (and more recently last week).

Regarding Carlson’s slipping into anti-capitalist socialist rants, Tom Mullen points out,

It’s hard to believe Carlson could get so many things wrong in under five minutes, starting with his general premise. He and Bernie argue the problem is the corporations not paying enough, resulting in taxpayers having to pick up the slack. But business enterprises in a free market are supposed to seek the lowest prices they can find for labor and other inputs. That’s how market economies drive down the costs of consumer goods and make all members of society richer.

Carlson does not seem to understand that about the free market.

More recently, in a not-particularly-coherent rant, after noting the decline of American society and the importance of marriage, Carlson states:

Under our current system, an American who works for a salary pays about twice the tax rate as someone who’s living off inherited money and doesn’t work at all. We tax capital at half of what we tax labor. It’s a sweet deal if you work in finance, as many of our rich people do.

Republican leaders will have to acknowledge that market capitalism is not a religion. Market capitalism is a tool, like a staple gun or a toaster. You’d have to be a fool to worship it. Our system was created by human beings for the benefit of human beings. We do not exist to serve markets. Just the opposite. Any economic system that weakens and destroys families is not worth having. A system like that is the enemy of a healthy society.

But he never really seems to get what might be the root cause of so much societal decay. In my view, it is the institutionalization of theft, a.k.a. “taxation,” and the population allowing bureaucrats to impose intrusive policies into the private lives of the people.

Involuntary redistribution of wealth schemes empower parasites in central bureaucracies to wield control over others, a control which should not exist in a free society.

If there weren’t an income tax which is imposed coercively and with threats, then many of the power-wielding tyrants would otherwise be sweeping floors in the local Wal-Mart. That is because if there were a genuine free market and no government monopolies over a population compelled to support them, such skill-less bureaucrats would never be able to find actual work, in my view.

But, like Carlson, many people don’t seem willing or able to look at the income tax itself, or understand that it is a scheme of involuntary wealth confiscation via coercion and threats (otherwise known as “theft”).

The income tax-theft has been the underlying basis that has enabled and empowered criminals and gangsters to commit their crimes against their neighbors and get away with it. (For example, would the FBI, CIA, and DOJ have been able to do their dirty deeds had they not been involuntarily financed with the coercive tax-thefts? Nope.)

On the tax-thefts, Murray Rothbard wrote in his Ethics of Liberty,

For there is one crucially important power inherent in the nature of the State apparatus. All other persons and groups in society (except for acknowledged and sporadic criminals such as thieves and bank robbers) obtain their income voluntarily: either by selling goods and services to the consuming public, or by voluntary gift (e.g., membership in a club or association, bequest, or inheritance). Only the State obtains its revenue by coercion, by threatening dire penalties should the income not be forthcoming. That coercion is known as “taxation,” although in less regularized epochs it was often known as “tribute.” Taxation is theft, purely and simply even though it is theft on a grand and colossal scale which no acknowledged criminals could hope to match. It is a compulsory seizure of the property of the State’s inhabitants, or subjects.

It would be an instructive exercise for the skeptical reader to try to frame a definition of taxation which does not also include theft. Like the robber, the State demands money at the equivalent of gunpoint; if the taxpayer refuses to pay his assets are seized by force, and if he should resist such depredation, he will be arrested or shot if he should continue to resist…

And on the State, Rothbard wrote in his Anatomy of the State (.pdf),

The State, in the words of Oppenheimer, is the “organization of the political means”; it is the systematization of the predatory process over a given territory. For crime, at best, is sporadic and uncertain; the parasitism is ephemeral, and the coercive, parasitic lifeline may be cut off at any time by the resistance of the victims. The State provides a legal, orderly, systematic channel for the predation of private property; it renders certain, secure, and relatively “peaceful” the lifeline of the parasitic caste in society. Since production must always precede predation, the free market is anterior to the State. The State has never been created by a “social contract”; it has always been born in conquest and exploitation. The classic paradigm was a conquering tribe pausing in its time-honored method of looting and murdering a conquered tribe, to realize that the time-span of plunder would be longer and more secure, and the situation more pleasant, if the conquered tribe were allowed to live and produce, with the conquerors settling among them as rulers exacting a steady annual tribute.

What has been lacking in America for over a century is freedom, economic freedom including the freedom to keep everything you earn (or otherwise honestly acquire) and do with it whatever you want. Americans used to have the freedom to save, invest, spend, contribute to charity, start businesses without government permission or government stealing from the people.

If there is to be an “America,” people need to know that it was founded to be a place of freedom, in which people are protected from others taking their earnings or property by force.

And an America in which people can come and go as they wish. No government permission, no visas, no passports, no being questioned by goons at the government border.

And early on the Revolutionaries who founded America recognized that it was the right of the people to keep and bear arms, not the right of the government to keep and bear arms. A free society is one in which people have whatever means of defense they wish to have. No government permission, no license, no registration, etc. That is actually a safer society.

I think the masses now for generations have been so brainwashed with propaganda, they really believe that it is right that they be subjugated by government authorities, that they must seek bureaucrats’ permission to do this or that, that they must submit to government rulers and enforcement goons stealing their money away, and accept all the other totalitarian, police state crimes that government criminals commit against the people.

We need to change that.

Freedom goes with free-market capitalism, while socialism and government theft of private wealth and property are anti-freedom, a police state, and a life of serfdom.

Further reading:

Economics in One Lesson, by Henry Hazlitt

Taking Money Back, Making Economic Sense (.pdf), Free Market, For a New Liberty, and The Case Against the Fed by Murray Rothbard

And Soak the PoorTaxation is Robbery, and The Income Tax: Root of All Evil by Frank Chodorov

Is Trump the “Psyop in Chief”?

In the past I had been thinking that The Donald being not-so intelligent and easily manipulable has been psy-opped by the national security state, CIA, FBI, the military generals, etc., to get Trump to give them everything they have wanted, and more. And he has been doing that. But because Trump is starting to act on more realistic impulses that go against the “security” bureaucrats, they seem to be leaving him. Yay! (Like John Kelly, Jim Mattis, et al.)

But Donald Jeffries is suggesting that Trump may very well be the one doing the psy-opping, like on the American people, and maybe on behalf of the very deep state, or national security state, he has been the target of. Is Trump actually very intelligent and just pretending to be dumb? Is he just a very good actor? (In my view, the bureaucracy has been after him for decades, in the same way they went after Michael Milken, Martha Stewart, etc. because bureaucrats are generally parasites who resent those with entrepreneurial success. But that’s what I think about that.)

JFK and Donald Trump

Jacob Hornberger has written a lot about the JFK assassination. (Here is one of his major articles on that subject.)

In his most recent post on JFK, Trump, Russia, and the deep state, he writes:

Ever since I began writing on the JFK assassination, there have been those who have said to me, “What difference does it make whether this was a regime-change operation? Most everyone who engaged in it is dead by now anyway. What relevance does the assassination have for us living today?”

The answer: We are still living under the governmental structure that pulled it off, the same structure that has been conducting a counterintelligence investigation of President Trump to determine whether he is a secret agent of the Russian government and, therefore, a threat to “national security.”

And he goes on to explain the historical context of why Donald Trump is being “investigated” as a “national security threat.”

“The Obama/New York Times Plot to Overthrow Trump”

Ron Paul and Daniel McAdams discuss “The Obama/New York Times Plot to Overthrow Trump”:

More:

David Stockman comments on the New Gray Lady, the New York Times’ most recent fictional essay on FBI viewing Donald Trump as a “national security threat.”

George Parry says the FBI prostituted itself.

And Tom Knapp says, Now more than ever, it’s clear the FBI must go.

(And also must go: the CIA, the NSA, DHS, ICE, TSA, and all the other unconstitutional three-letter word agencies in Washington.)

And speaking of the FBI and TSA, Becky Akers writes about the TSA molesters and the Stockholm Syndrome-suffering serfs who support them.

William Barr, Robert Mueller, and the New York Slimes

I heard some excerpts of today’s confirmation hearings of Donald Trump’s nominee for attorney general, William Barr, who said that the Mueller inquisition is NOT a “witch hunt” (after all he knows about it). Jeepers.

As I wrote already, Barr is an authoritarian statist, a “former” CIA flunky and thus a national security state apparatchik, as well as a vicious drug warrior, against prison reform, and is anti-immigration like Trump, i.e. extremely authoritarian.

Barr is a long-time friend of “special” counsel Robert Mueller, and I don’t see him actively wanting to expose the FBI and DOJ’s corruption and criminality in their falsely exonerating Hillary Clinton and their abusing FISA spying authority to go after Trump. He will be a cover-upper. Barr’s daughter, by the way, is a senior DOJ official, for drug policy. And if he recuses himself from the Mueller-Russia fishing expedition it would be just like Jeff Sessions, and, what, they’ll continue with the corrupt, conflicted Rod Rosenstein overseeing the investigation?

Moon of Alabama has this essay on how Obama enabled the FBI to spy on Trump. And Moon also addresses the recent New York Slimes propaganda piece on the FBI investigating Trump as a Putin asset. The Slimes makes stuff up and that piece is an example. Glenn Greenwald also spends time on the Slimes piece, and looks back to the J. Edgar Hoover FBI investigating high government officials as “national security threats.”

That the major news media outlets are not only taking people’s quotes out of context to make them look bad, or deliberately slanting an article by omitting key facts as a means of propagandizing against a certain public figure or issue is bad enough. But just making things up like a gossip rag is very bad. In fact, when these major news outlets are propagandizing like the Pravda, I think we really are in trouble. Some pundits have referred to that as “dangerous,” and it is.

So anyway, my conclusion is that with a Barr attorney general we will see a whitewashing of the DOJ and FBI criminality and corruption. The vast majority of Americans will continue to not be informed of the truth. Sad.

Democrat Warmongers, Socialism, and the Need for an American Brexit

Glenn Greenwald features polling data that suggest Democrats now are the new warmongers, while Republicans tend to agree with Donald Trump in Trump’s getting the military to begin withdrawal from Syria (and, let’s hope, Iraq, Afghanistan, and all those other territories that are not U.S. territories where U.S. government military do not belong!). Greenwald notes how the change in party-warmonger association occurred after the 2016 election. Like, “we hate Donald Trump, so if he wants to get troops out of foreign war zones, then we want them in there,” is what today’s Democrat voters seem to be saying.

Meanwhile, across the pond the besieged and embattled-axe Theresa May is doomed as Prime Minister of the U.K. because her clinging Brexit plan is going down to defeat in Parliament. She may very well be replaced by the far-leftist Jeremy Corbin. Why is it that there can only be the choice of left-wing statists or “rightists” conservative nationalists? Libertarians no longer exist, either in U.K. or in the U.S., it seems.

If it is a war between private property advocates and collectivists, socialists and nationalists, the private property advocates are in a teeny-tiny minority.

And here in the U.S. we have the young people attracted to socialism, even though they have no idea what it really is. It sounds nice. And no, Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez, Sweden and the Nordic countries are not “socialist” countries, because they are generally “free-market” economies with privately-owned industry and means of production but with a welfare state, just like in the U.S. and the U.K.

Socialism is not Sweden, Norway, Denmark, et al. No, socialism is Soviet Union, China, North Korea, Cuba, Venezuela.

But because those who advocate for socialism are ignorant of what it is and of the history of its murderous, destructive effects throughout history, they advocate for it, because “socialism” sounds nice.

The advocates for continued government central planning in immigration in Amerika, so-called nationalists like Donald Trump, want a Government Wall on the border. They are unified in that. So, not much difference between those guys and the people on the left who want government central planning in other areas. And yes, the controls that the U.S. government has over immigration are examples of socialist, government central planning. As I wrote before, The Donald is himself a diehard socialist. And so are his ignorant followers, apparently. Socialism is all about a criminal police state over the people, in immigration, and all other areas.

Besides the hysterical cheerers-on for immigration socialism central planning police state Government Wall, the other more overt socialists want the government to run just about everything else. What they, too, want is a police state. What do they do if people don’t want to submit to the socialists’ plan for funding and participating in a government-run health care scheme? The socialists send the armed police after the people. What do the socialists do if people don’t obey their government edicts and diktats on firearms ownership, or financial regulations or continuing to use cash, gold or bartering against the rules? The socialists send the armed police after the people. That’s their police state.

But contrary to today’s proud self-proclaimed socialists who want to control every aspect of the lives of the people, and throw the serfs in jail if they don’t comply, or today’s not-so-self-proclaimed socialists in immigration who want to arrest and jail “illegal” immigrants who neglected to get a bureaucrat’s permission to travel or move to a better area, the true purpose of America was supposed to be FREEDOM!

And centralization such as in Soviet Union, European and United States always goes against freedom. Decentralization promotes freedom.

For example, in a free society people are free to come and go as they please, without anyone’s authorization. As long as they are peaceful. If you don’t suspect some individual of violating the person or property of others, then you leave him alone. Don’t punish peaceful, innocent people for the actions of others. The American Revolutionaries, so-called Founding Fathers, would never have wanted a Government Wall on the border of their new “America.”

Besides the freedom to come and go as one pleases, a free society also means the freedom to own and possess whatever material property one wants, as long as one is peaceful and acquires the property honestly, including any kind of weapons or means of defense one wants. No permission from bureaucrats, no registration, no license.

I could go on and on, but the free society that was envisioned by the American Revolutionaries was with respect to self-ownership and the non-aggression principle, private property rights, freedom of contract, freedom of association and freedom of non-association, freedom of movement, and so on.

But those guys didn’t realize what a mistake they made by empowering a centralized government in Washington over the people of the states. The Anti-Federalists were right to be skeptical. If today’s Trump-worshiping nationalists were around at the time of the Revolution, they would never have even considered the Anti-Federalists’ skepticism and their views against centralization of power.

And now, America is too big to be one single country with one single culture, from coast to coast and border to border. It’s just too big. So, we need our own Brexit, too. We need to decentralize, just as the European Union needs to do, just as Soviet Union did.

But I don’t have that much hope for that, for any return to freedom because too many people among the population reject that freedom, on the left and the right, and all points between. Just look how juvenile the Democrat voters are, drooling with hatred of Donald Trump, as well as the nationalist Trump followers, drooling with hatred of foreigners. They are all in agreement that government central planning should continue, and they oppose private property and free markets.