Saturday, January 19, 2019

MSM Begs For Trust After Buzzfeed Debacle


Following what the Washington Post has described as “the highest-profile misstep yet for a news organization during a period of heightened and intense scrutiny of the press,” mass media representatives are now flailing desperately for an argument as to why people should continue to place their trust in mainstream news outlets.

On Thursday Buzzfeed News delivered the latest “bombshell” Russiagate report to fizzle within 24 hours of its publication, a pattern that is now so consistent that I’ve personally made a practice of declining to comment on such stories until a day or two after their release. “BOOM!” tweets were issued by #Resistance pundits on Twitter, “If true this means X, Y and Z” bloviations were made on mass media punditry panels, and for about 20 hours Russiagaters everywhere were riding the high of their lives, giddy with the news that President Trump had committed an impeachable felony by ordering Michael Cohen to lie to Congress about a proposed Trump office tower in Moscow, a proposal which died within weeks and the Kremlin never touched.

There was reason enough already for any reasonable person to refrain from frenzied celebration, including the fact that the story’s two authors, Jason Leopold and Anthony Cormier, were giving the press two very different accounts of the information they’d based it on, with Cormier telling CNN that he had not personally seen the evidence underlying his report and Leopold telling MSNBC that he had. Both Leopold and Cormier, for the record, have already previously suffered a Russiagate faceplant with the clickbait viral story that Russia had financed the 2016 election, burying the fact that it was a Russian election.

UPDATE: A spokesperson for the special counsel is disputing BuzzFeed News' report.

 — @BuzzFeedNews

Then the entire story came crashing down when Mueller’s office took the extremely rare step of issuing an unequivocal statement that the Buzzfeed story was wrong, writing simply, “BuzzFeed’s description of specific statements to the special counsel’s office, and characterization of documents and testimony obtained by this office, regarding Michael Cohen’s congressional testimony are not accurate.”

According to journalist and economic analyst Doug Henwood, the print New York Times covered the Buzzfeed report on its front page when the story broke, but the report on Mueller’s correction the next day was shoved back to page 11. This appalling journalistic malpractice makes it very funny that NYT’s Wajahat Ali had the gall to tweet, “Unlike the Trump administration, journalists are fact checking and willing to correct the record if the Buzzfeed story is found inaccurate. Not really the actions of a deep state and enemy of the people, right?”

This is the behavior of a media class that is interested in selling narratives, not reporting truth. And yet the mass media talking heads are all telling us today that we must continue to trust them.

“Those trying to tar all media today aren’t interested in improving journalism but protecting themselves,” tweeted NBC’s Chuck Todd. “There’s a lot more accountability in media these days than in our politics. We know we live in a glass house, we hope the folks we cover are as self aware.”

More accountability in media than in politics, Chuck? Really? Accountability to whom? Your advertisers? Your plutocratic owners? Certainly not to the people whose minds you are paid exorbitant sums to influence; there are no public elections for the leadership of the mass media.

“Mueller didn’t do the media any favors tonight, and he did do the president one,” griped the odious Chris Cuomo on CNN. “Because as you saw with Rudy Giuliani and as I’m sure you’ll see with the president himself, this allows them to say ‘You can’t believe it! You can’t believe what you read, you can’t believe what you hear! You can only believe us. Even the Special Counsel says that the media doesn’t get it right.’”

“The larger message that a lot of people are going to take from this story is that the news media are a bunch of leftist liars who are dying to get the president, and they’re willing to lie to do it, and I don’t think that’s true” said Jeffrey Toobin on a CNN panel, adding “I just think this is a bad day for us.”

“It does reinforce bad stereotypes about the news media,” said Brian Stelter on the same CNN panel. “I am desperate as a media reporter to always say to the audience, judge folks individually and judge brands individually. Don’t fall for what these politicians out there want you to do. They want you to think we’re all crooked. We’re not. But Buzzfeed now, now the onus is on Buzzfeed.”

CNN, for the record, has been guilty of an arguably even more embarrassing Russiagate flub than Buzzfeed’s when they wrongly reported that Donald Trump Jr had had access to WikiLeaks’ DNC email archives prior to their 2016 publication, an error that was hilariously due to to the simple misreading of an email date by multiple people.

CNN is leading the way in bashing BuzzFeed but it's worth remembering CNN had a humiliation at least as big & bad: when they yelled that Trump Jr. had advanced access to the WL archive (!): all based on a wrong date.

 — @ggreenwald

The mass media, including pro-Trump mass media like Fox News, absolutely deserves to be distrusted. It has earned that distrust. It had earned that distrust already with its constant promotion of imperialist wars and an oligarch-friendly status quo, and it has earned it even more with its frenzied promotion of a narrative engineered to manufacture consent for a preexisting agenda to shove Russia off the world stage.

The mainstream media absolutely is the enemy of the people; just because Trump says it doesn’t make it untrue. The only reason people don’t rise up and use the power of their numbers to force the much-needed changes that need to happen in our world is because they are being propagandized to accept the status quo day in and day out by the mass media’s endless cultural engineering project. They are the reason why wars go unopposed, why third parties never gain traction, why people consent to money hemorrhaging upward to the wealthiest of the wealthy while everyone else struggles to survive. The sooner people wake up from the perverse narrative matrix of the plutocratic media, the better.


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‘Russia Collusion’: The Only Real ‘Colluders’ Have Been Proven To Be The Accusers



by Richard Enos, Collective Evolution: The Facts:As more evidence comes out, it is looking like the only ones ‘colluding’ in the ‘Russian Collusion’ affair are those U. S. government officials who have been trying to make the case against Donald Trump. Reflect On:Is there anyone out there that still believes claims that Donald Trump somehow […]

The post ‘Russia Collusion’: The Only Real ‘Colluders’ Have Been Proven To Be The Accusers appeared first on SGT Report.


This Is The Reason Smart TVs Are So Cheap 


A significant reason why a smart TV, or perhaps a new 65-inch 4K smart TV with HDR capability, can be purchased for about $500, is because some manufacturers are harvesting data from users.

Vizio’s Chief Technology Officer, Bill Baxter, outlined the strategy to The Verge during the Consumer Electronics Expo in Las Vegas, Nevada last Monday.

"This is a cutthroat industry. It's a 6% margin industry," Baxter said. "The greater strategy is I really don't need to make money off of the TV. I need to cover my cost."

More specifically, electronic manufacturers like Vizio have figured out that they can sell smart TVs at, or around cost, and concentrate on data harvesting and post-purchase monetization.

As Baxter put it: "It's not just about data collection. It's about post-purchase monetization of the TV."

He explained there are several ways to monetize smart TVs: "You sell some movies, you sell some TV shows, you sell some ads, you know."

Baxter said, without the additional forms of revenue, consumers would be paying higher premiums for smart TVs. "We'd collect a little bit more margin at retail to offset it."

Listen to the full interview here 

Vizio TVs, have the ability, with user opt-in, track anything that is on the TV, what the company calls “automatic content recognition.” That data used to be sold off to third-party data aggregators, but after the Federal Trade Commission and New Jersey slapped the company with a multi-million dollar fine in 2017. 

Legal documents from the case reportedly show that Vizio installed software on 11 million smart TVs to track viewing habits without consumers' knowledge.

Now, Vizio keeps the data but sells targeted advertising in a platform model like Google and Facebook.

So you must be wondering how much data is Vizio collecting from smart TVs?

Well, the Verge’s editor-in-chief, Nilay Patel, tweeted that a connected VIZIO P-Series Class 4K HDR Smart TV pings a server over 500,000 times a week or nearly once every second, much more than the typical device.

My parents’ brand new Vizio P-Series TV (which is not set up to stream anything, they have an Apple TV) pings a server 10x more than any other device they own

— nilay patel (@reckless) January 6, 2019

Vizio is watching you...


Johns Hopkins, Bristol-Myers Face $1 Billion Suit For Infecting Guatemalan Hookers With Syphilis 


A federal judge in Maryland said Johns Hopkins University, pharmaceutical company Bristol-Myers Squibb and the Rockefeller Foundation must face a $1 billion lawsuit over their roles in a top-secret program in the 1940s ran by the US government that injected hundreds of Guatemalans with syphilis, reported Reuters.

Several doctors from Hopkins and the Rockefeller Foundation were involved in the government program, as well as four executives from Bristol-Myers' predecessors, Bristol Laboratories and the Squibb Institute, according to the complaint.

"The overall purpose of the study was to test out whether antibiotics could be used to prevent syphilis and other sexually transmitted infections before its symptoms appeared in someone who was exposed to them. So the researchers initially recruited sex workers with syphilis to have sex with prisoners.

Later on, they directly infected volunteers without their informed consent or knowledge of what was really happening.

In many cases, though, infected people were left untreated. In total, 83 deaths were linked to the study, though it’s not entirely certain whether the infections were the direct cause (That said, late-stage syphilis is often fatal)," reported Gizmodo.

In a January 3 decision, US District Judge Theodore Chuang denied the defendants’ argument that a recent Supreme Court decision shielding foreign businesses from lawsuits in US courts over human rights abuses abroad also applied to domestic firms absent Congressional authorization.

Chuang’s decision was a big victory for 444 victims (all mostly dead) and their relatives suing over the experiment.

The experiment was concealed until a professor at Wellesley College in Massachusetts discovered the files in 2010.

Chuang said lawsuits against US businesses under the federal Alien Tort Statute were not “categorically foreclosed” by the Supreme Court decision last April 24 in Jesner v Arab Bank Plc covering foreign corporations.

He said the “need for judicial caution” was “markedly reduced” where US businesses were defendants because there was no significant threat of diplomatic tensions from foreign governments.

The federal judge said letting the Guatemala case proceed would “promote harmony” by giving foreign plaintiffs a chance at a remedy in the American court system.

“Johns Hopkins expresses profound sympathy for individuals and families impacted by the deplorable 1940s syphilis study funded and conducted by the U.S. government in Guatemala,” the university said in a statement. “We respect the legal process, and we will continue to vigorously defend the lawsuit.”

Hopkins, Bristol-Myers, and the Rockefeller Foundation and their lawyers did not immediately respond to Reuters' requests for a statement.

Paul Bekman, a lawyer for the 444 Guatemalans, said his clients would proceed with discovery, including the exchange of decades-old documents.

An earlier decision found no statute of limitations arguments could be made since the plaintiffs did not learn about the experiment until 2010. 

Infecting Guatemalan hookers with sexually transmitted diseases was one of many eugenic programs the US government conducted during the 1940s and Post–World War II era. Now the academic institutions and corporations involved in these horrific government experiments are being served with massive lawsuits that could be financially devastating. 


Friday, January 18, 2019

"Everybody Knew" WSJ Exposes Bruce Ohr's Shocking Admission To The FBI


The Wall Street Journal continues to counter  the  liberal mainstream media's Trump Derangement Syndrome, dropping uncomfortable truth-bombs and refusing to back off its intense pressure to get to the truth and hold those responsible, accountable (in a forum that is hard for the establishment to shrug off as 'Alt-Right' or 'Nazi' or be 'punished' by search- and social-media-giants).

And once again Kimberley Strassel  - who by now has become the focus of social media attacks for her truth-seeking reporting - does it again. Confirming what we detailed yesterday - that The Justice Department was fully aware that the notorious Steele Dossier was connected to Hillary Clinton and might be biased, a crucial detail which was omitted just weeks later from the Foreign Intelligence Surveillance Act (FISA) warrant used to spy on the Trump campaign - Strassel makes the aggressive and correct statement that the Justice Department official’s testimony raises new doubts about the bureau’s honesty.

Via The Wall Street Journal,

Everybody knew.

Everybody of consequence at the Federal Bureau of Investigation and Justice Department understood fully in the middle of 2016 - as the FBI embarked on its counterintelligence probe of Donald Trump - that it was doing so based on disinformation provided by Hillary Clinton’s campaign.

That’s the big revelation from the transcript of the testimony Justice Department official Bruce Ohr gave Congress in August. The transcripts haven’t been released, but parts were confirmed for me by congressional sources.

Mr. Ohr testified that he sat down with dossier author Christopher Steele on July 30, 2016, and received salacious information the opposition researcher had compiled on Mr. Trump. Mr. Ohr immediately took that to the FBI’s then-Deputy Director Andy McCabe and lawyer Lisa Page. In August he took it to Peter Strzok, the bureau’s lead investigator. In the same month, Mr. Ohr believes, he briefed senior personnel in the Justice Department’s criminal division: Deputy Assistant Attorney General Bruce Swartz, lawyer Zainab Ahmad and fraud unit head Andrew Weissman. The last two now work for special counsel Robert Mueller.

More important, Mr. Ohr told this team the information came from the Clinton camp and warned that it was likely biased, certainly unproven.

“When I provided [the Steele information] to the FBI, I tried to be clear that this is source information,” he testified.

“I don’t know how reliable it is. You’re going to have to check it out and be aware. These guys were hired by somebody relating to—who’s related to the Clinton campaign, and be aware.”

He said he told them that Mr. Steele was “desperate that Donald Trump not get elected,” and that his own wife, Nellie Ohr, worked for Fusion GPS, which compiled the dossier. He confirmed sounding all these warnings before the FBI filed its October application for a surveillance warrant against Carter Page. We broke some of this in August, though the transcript provides new detail.

The FBI and Justice Department have gone to extraordinary lengths to muddy these details, with cover from Democrats and friendly journalists.

A January 2017 memo from Adam Schiff, the House Intelligence Committee’s top Democrat, flatly (and incorrectly) insisted “the FBI’s closely-held investigative team only received Steele’s reporting in mid-September.”

A May 2018 New York Times report repeated that claim, saying Mr. Steele’s reports didn’t reach the “Crossfire Hurricane team,” which ran the counterintelligence investigation, until “mid-September.”

This line was essential for upholding the claim that the dossier played no role in the unprecedented July 31, 2016, decision to investigate a presidential campaign. Former officials have insisted they rushed to take this dramatic step on the basis of a conversation involving a low-level campaign aide, George Papadopoulos, which took place in May, before the dossier officially came into the picture. And maybe that is the case. Yet now Mr. Ohr has testified that top personnel had dossier details around the time they opened the probe.

The Ohr testimony is also further evidence that the FBI misled the Foreign Intelligence Surveillance Court in its Page warrant application. We already knew the bureau failed to inform the court it knew the dossier had come from a rival campaign. But the FISA application additionally claimed the FBI was “unaware of any derogatory information pertaining” to Mr. Steele, that he was “reliable,” that his “reporting” in this case was “credible,” and that the FBI only “speculates” that Mr. Steele’s bosses “likely” wanted to “discredit” Mr. Trump.

Speculates? Likely? Mr. Ohr makes clear FBI and Justice officials knew from the earliest days that Mr. Steele was working for the Clinton campaign, which had an obvious desire to discredit Mr. Trump. And Mr. Ohr specifically told investigators that they had every reason to worry Mr. Steele’s work product was tainted.

Strassel concludes succinctly - and ominously for anyone who still believes that 'we, the people' have any freedom left, that the testimony has three other implications.

First, it further demonstrates the accuracy of the House Intelligence Committee Republicans’ memo of 2018 - which noted Mr. Ohr’s role and pointed out that the FBI had not been honest about its knowledge of the dossier and failed to inform the court of Mrs. Ohr’s employment at Fusion GPS.

Second, the testimony also destroys any remaining credibility of the Democratic response, in which Mr. Schiff and his colleagues claimed Mr. Ohr hadn’t met with the FBI or told them anything about his wife or about Mr. Steele’s bias until after the election.

And third, the testimony raises new concerns about Mr. Mueller’s team. Critics have noted Mr. Weissman’s donations to Mrs. Clinton and his unseemly support of former acting Attorney General Sally Yates’s obstruction of Trump orders. It now turns out that senior Mueller players were central to the dossier scandal. The conflicts of interest boggle the mind.

And Strassel concludes unequivocally, the Ohr testimony is evidence the FBI itself knows how seriously it erred. The FBI has been hiding and twisting facts from the start.


Finnish Study Validates Jordan Peterson's Take on Nordic Feminism - Sputnik International

50 Years Ago, Sugar Industry Quietly Paid Scientists To Point Blame At Fat : The Two-Way : NPR

Narrative Control Firm Targeting Alternative Media – Consortiumnews

Oregon to Become First State to Mandate Universal Home Visits of All Families with New-born Children

Our Prussian model of public schooling; controlling the masses – St George News

Facebook Is Now Censoring Talk About Politics And Religion At Work


It's not just social media users that are being censored, now its social media employees.

According to a new report by Business Insider, citing an internal company memo, Facebook is now telling its employees what they can, and can't, talk about at work.

Business Insider reviewed an internal company memo where Facebook's CTO claims to have put together "a set of ground rules for open and respectful communication at work, and a central moderation model."

The memo states: "We're keeping it simple with three main guidelines: Don't insult, bully, or antagonize others. Don't try to change someone's politics or religion. Don't break our rules about harassing speech and expression."

Facebook uses Workplace, an app that allows chat, for internal communication. Employees use it for work related projects, but also occasionally for small talk. The app is targeted as the main area where these new rules will apply.

The memo continues: "These guidelines apply to all work communications including Workplace, email, chat, tasks, posters, whiteboards, chalkboards, and face-to-face. Since Workplace is where most of these discussions happen, we are investing engineering resources there."

Facebook has also made it easier for employees to report one another when somebody says something that "offends" someone else. The memo continued: 

"We are making it easier to report posts and comments, and those reports will go straight to a trained moderator who'll moderate as needed. We're also developing more tools to help proactively."

We can't help but wonder, "Who is training the moderator?"

Social media sites have been under fire for censorship over the past couple of years: many on the right claim they're being targeted and stripped of their right to free speech, while those on the left are perpetually claiming that every statement they don't agree with is "hate speech" and "bullying". In fact, the censorship has gotten so prominent at times, it prompted the President to Tweet about it last summer. 

"Social Media is totally discriminating against Republican/Conservative voices. Speaking loudly and clearly for the Trump Administration, we won’t let that happen. They are closing down the opinions of many people on the RIGHT, while at the same time doing nothing to others," Trump said back in August.

In response, Facebook launched a review of policies possibly impacting conservative voices and other communities in back in early 2018. 

Journalist Caitlin Johnstone, who last year survived Twitter's attempt to suspend her Twitter account, described the suspension-spree, noting: "In a corporatist system, corporate censorship is state censorship."


Thursday, January 17, 2019

The Most Insidious Method Of Control Never Devised

Google Manipulated YouTube Search Results To Program Users' Behavior



In a new leak that can be accurately labeled “the smoking gun,” Google has been busted manipulating search results on YouTube in order to manipulate social behaviors and control minds. An internal discussion thread leaked to Breitbart News reveals that Google regularly intervenes in search results on its YouTube video platform.


Dossier Shocker: Top DOJ Official Sounded Alarm, Warned Of Clinton Connection And Possible Bias


The Justice Department was fully aware that the notorious Steele Dossier was connected to Hillary Clinton and might be biased - a crucial detail which was omitted just weeks later from the Foreign Intelligence Surveillance Act (FISA) warrant used to spy on the Trump campaign, reports John Solomon of The Hill

Bruce Ohr

According to Solomon's sources - which have proven impeccable, the former #4 Department of Justice (DOJ) official, Bruce Ohr - who had extensive contact with Steele, briefed "both senior FBI and DOJ officials in summer 2016 about Christopher Steele's Russia dossier, explicitly cautioning that the British intelligence operative's work was opposition research connected to Hillary Clinton's campaign and might be biased.

Ohr’s activities, chronicled in handwritten notes and congressional testimony I gleaned from sources, provide the most damning evidence to date that FBI and DOJ officials may have misled federal judges in October 2016 in their zeal to obtain the warrant targeting Trump adviser Carter Page just weeks before Election Day. -The Hill

Ohr's activities also contradict a key argument made by House Democrats in their attempts to downplay the significance of the Steele Dossier; that the FBI claimed it was "unaware of any derogatory information" about Steele, and that the former MI6 operative was "never advised ... as to the motivation behind the research." The FBI further "speculates" that those who hired Steele were "likely looking for information to discredit" Trump's campaing. 

There was no "speculation" going on by the FBI. Thanks to Ohr's warning, they absolutely knew about Steele's bias against Trump while working for a Clinton-funded project to gather harmful opposition research on him. 

Ohr had firsthand knowledge about the motive and the client: He had just met with Steele on July 30, 2016, and Ohr’s wife, Nellie, worked for Fusion GPS, the same firm employing Steele.

“I certainly told the FBI that Fusion GPS was working with, doing opposition research on Donald Trump,” Ohr told congressional investigators, adding that he warned the FBI that Steele expressed bias during their conversations.

I provided information to the FBI when I thought Christopher Steele was, as I said, desperate that Trump not be elected,” he added. “So, yes, of course I provided that to the FBI.” -The Hill

When lawmakers pressed Ohr as to why he would volunteer that information to the FBI, he answered "In case there might be any kind of bias or anything like that," adding later "So when I provided it to the FBI, I tried to be clear that this is source information, I don’t know how reliable it is. You’re going to have to check it out and be aware."

Ohr also says he told the FBI that his wife and Steele were working for Fusion GPS - the same firm hired by the Clinton campaign through intermediary law firm Perkins Coie, and that they were conduction Trump-Russia research at the behest of Clinton's camp.

Glenn Simpson (left), Christopher Steele, Bruce and Nellie Ohr

"These guys were hired by somebody relating to, who’s related to the Clinton campaign and be aware," Ohr told lawmakers, explaining how he warned the bureau. 

Perkins Coie eventually admitted to paying Fusion GPS, disguising the payments as legal bills when it was in fact opposition research

When Ohr was asked if he knew of any connection between the Steele Dossier and the DNC, he said he thought the project was really connected to the Clinton campaign, saying: "I didn’t know they were employed by the DNC but I certainly said yes that they were working for, you know, they were somehow working, associated with the Clinton campaign." 

"I also told the FBI that my wife worked for Fusion GPS or was a contractor for GPS, Fusion GPS," he added. 

Ohr divulged his first contact with the FBI was on July 31, 2016, when he reached out to then-Deputy Director Andrew McCabe and FBI attorney Lisa Page. He then was referred to the agents working Russia counterintelligence, including Peter Strzok, the now-fired agent who played a central role in starting the Trump collusion probe.

But Ohr’s contacts about the Steele dossier weren’t limited to the FBI. He said in August 2016 — nearly two months before the FISA warrant was issued — that he was asked to conduct a briefing for senior Justice officials.

Those he briefed included Andrew Weissmann, then the head of DOJ’s fraud section; Bruce Swartz, longtime head of DOJ’s international operations, and Zainab Ahmad, an accomplished terrorism prosecutor who, at the time, was assigned to work with Lynch as a senior counselor.

Ahmad and Weissmann would go on to work for Mueller, the special prosecutor overseeing the Russia probe. -The Hill

In early 2018, Democrats on the House Intelligence Committee sought to downplay Ohr's connections to Steele during their investigation - insisiting Ohr only notified the FBI about Steele after Steele was fired by the FBI in November 2016 for improper contacts with the media. 

The memo from House Democrats - led by Rep. Adam Schiff's (D-CA), says that Ohr's contact with the FBI only began "weeks after the election and more than a month after the Court approved the initial FISA application."

Ohr's testimony refutes Schiff's memo, making clear he was in contact with FBI and DOJ officials long before the FISA warrant or the 2016 US election

Not only that, "Ohr explicitly told the FBI that Steele was desperate to defeat the man he was investigating and was biased," according to Solomon, and the FBI didn't have to guess as to Steele's motives.

The Hill article is a powerful piece of evidence that the Mueller investigation is the illegitimate offspring of a prior investigation based on a phony dossier paid for by the DNC. This was never revealed in false affidavits presented to FISA court. Mueller’s people implicated.

— Rudy Giuliani (@RudyGiuliani) January 17, 2019


Earth’s Ecosystems Are On A Collision Course With Extinction: Insect Populations Have Declined By Up To 98 Percent In Some Areas Of The World


Scientists are calling it “the insect apocalypse”, and it has extremely serious implications for the future of our planet. All over the globe, insect populations are plummeting dramatically. And since insects are at the very foundation of the global food chain, that is really bad news for all of us. In fact, one expert described what is happening to the global insect population as “hyper-alarming”. If we continue down the path that we are currently on, a bleak, apocalyptic future for our planet is all but assured.

When scientist Brad Lister recently returned to the Luquillo rainforest in Puerto Rico, he quickly realized that something was very, very wrong. And once his team began taking measurements, they discovered that 98 percent of the insect population on the ground was completely gone

“We knew that something was amiss in the first couple days,” said Brad Lister. “We were driving into the forest and at the same time both Andres and I said: ‘Where are all the birds?’ There was nothing.”

His return to the Luquillo rainforest in Puerto Rico after 35 years was to reveal an appalling discovery. The insect population that once provided plentiful food for birds throughout the mountainous national park had collapsed. On the ground, 98% had gone. Up in the leafy canopy, 80% had vanished.

But if this was just happening in Puerto Rico, it definitely would not be a global crisis.

Unfortunately, similar numbers are coming in from all over the planet

Flying insect numbers in Germany’s natural reserves have plunged 75% in just 25 years. The virtual disappearance of birds in an Australian eucalyptus forest was blamed on a lack of insects caused by drought and heat. Lister and his colleague Andrés García also found that insect numbers in a dry forest in Mexico had fallen 80% since the 1980s.

“We are essentially destroying the very life support systems that allow us to sustain our existence on the planet, along with all the other life on the planet,” Lister said. “It is just horrifying to watch us decimate the natural world like this.”

And one study that looked at data from the entire world concluded that there has been “a 45 percent drop in the abundance of invertebrates”

Worldwide, a 2014 summary of global declines in biodiversity and abundance estimated a 45 percent drop in the abundance of invertebrates, most of which are insects. And many individual species and species groups are declining or even being threatened with extinction, from bumblebees in Europe and the United States to fungus weevils in Africa.

When I said that we “are on a collision course with extinction” in the title of this article, I was not kidding around.

Without insects, we would have an exceedingly difficult time trying to survive on this planet. I really like how a Scientific American article made this point…

Insects pollinate a spectrum of plants, including many of those that humans rely on for food. They also are key players in other important jobs including breaking dead things down into the building blocks for new life, controlling weeds and providing raw materials for medicines. And they provide sustenance for a spectrum of other animals—in fact, the Puerto Rico study showed a decline in density of insect-eating frogs, birds and lizards that paralleled the insect nosedive.

As the planetary food chain systematically breaks down, we can rely on the artificial food chains that we have created for a while, but once things get bad enough those artificial food chains will not be nearly enough to feed the entire planet.

And it isn’t just invertebrates that are seeing their populations collapse.

Vertebrate populations are collapsing too, and according to one recent report they are down “an average of 60 percent since 1970”

The population of the planet’s vertebrates has dropped an average of 60 percent since 1970, according to a report by the WWF conservation organization.

The most striking decline in vertebrate population was in the tropics in South and Central America, with an 89 percent loss compared to 1970. Freshwater species have also significantly fallen — down 83 percent in that period.

Vertebrates include all mammals, fish, birds, amphibians and reptiles.

Needless to say, a 60 percent decline in less than 50 years is absolutely horrific, and essentially what we are facing is a slow-motion global cataclysm.

Meanwhile, we are running out of easily recoverable oil, there are already severe shortages of fresh water all over the globe, and at this point we can barely grow enough food to feed everyone in the world.

We are literally teetering on the precipice of disaster, and yet most people don’t realize what is happening.

The clock is ticking, and time is running out for the late, great planet Earth. We are literally destroying the globe, and we lack the willpower to do anything to stop our destructive behavior.

And soon 5G cellphone networks will be rolling out all over the world, and that will greatly increase the amount of radiation that we are constantly bombarding our natural environment with. But we must have better cellphone service, and so we are literally willing to sacrifice the future of our planet in order to get it.

I could go on and on, but I think that you get the point.

A massive global environmental collapse is already well underway, and it is only going to accelerate in the years ahead as humanity races toward a date with destiny.

Get Prepared NowAbout the author: Michael Snyder is a nationally-syndicated writer, media personality and political activist. He is the author of four books including Get Prepared Now, The Beginning Of The End and Living A Life That Really Matters. His articles are originally published on The Economic Collapse Blog, End Of The American Dream and The Most Important News. From there, his articles are republished on dozens of other prominent websites. If you would like to republish his articles, please feel free to do so. The more people that see this information the better, and we need to wake more people up while there is still time.

The post Earth’s Ecosystems Are On A Collision Course With Extinction: Insect Populations Have Declined By Up To 98 Percent In Some Areas Of The World appeared first on The Most Important News.


Wednesday, January 16, 2019

POLL: Most Americans believe US govt. spies on journalists



The following is from Rasmussen Reports

Voters strongly believe journalists and political opponents are targets of spying by the U.S. government, and they don’t trust the judgment of the feds when they do it.

A new Rasmussen Reports national telephone and online survey finds that 61% of Likely U.S. Voters think it’s at least somewhat likely that the U.S. government spies on critical journalists and political opponents, but 24% think it’s unlikely. This includes 30% who think it’s Very Likely the government spies on these groups and six percent (6%) who think it’s Not At All Likely. Another 14% are undecided. (To see survey question wording, click here.)

Does the U.S. government spy on critical journalists and political opponents?

  • 61% Very likely or somewhat likely
  • 24% Unlikely
  • 14% Undecided

Note: Sharyl Attkisson is currently suing the Justice Department and FBI for the government intrusions into her work and personal computers as far back as 2011 while she conducted investigative reporting for CBS News.

A diverse group of Constitutional free press and privacy advocates is supporting Attkisson v. Dept. of Justice/FBI to fight the government computer intrusions. Click here to support.


Human Rights Court Rules Against Parental Rights


Decades ago, when I was first ordained a priest, I shared a prejudice that many people hold: I thought homeschooling families were odd. I believed schooling children at home deprived such children of opportunities to be with other children causing them to be less able to communicate with others, socially awkward, and reclusive and narrow in their experience and understanding of the world that they would one day have to grow up in and navigate.

That was until I actually met home schooling families. This happened when I was serving in a chapel that had daily Masses serving largely downtown workers.  Most of those coming were business people who would come either before they went to work or during their lunch hours.  Among my congregants was a mother with three young children who would come regularly.  Aside from the regular fussiness of children being asked to sit quietly for a thirty minute service, I was impressed at how attentive and well-behaved the children were.

It was my custom during those years to welcome people as they entered the chapel and to greet them once again at the conclusion of liturgies. This afforded me the opportunity to get to know, even if only slightly, this family.

One day as the little gaggle entered the chapel I greeted them and noticed that one of the little boys–perhaps six or seven years old–was holding a napkin in his hand with something folded into it.

“What have you got there?” I asked.

Beaming with pride, he extended his hand to me and unfolded the napkin to reveal a hideous, almost prehistoric looking insect, lying dead on the crease.

I suspected he could see the horror in my face but he simply said, “This is a Tettigarctidae,” pronouncing the word precisely, “Homer writes about them in the Iliad. They are very interesting because they hibernate for long periods of time before emerging.”

“How interesting,” I said,  “I’ve never heard of them before… Well, let’s begin Mass then, shall we?”

A day or so later I received a letter, addressed to me in childish handwriting, in my mailbox.

“Dear Fr. Sirico,” it read, “I must apologize for the mistaken information I gave you the other day before Mass.  The bug that I found was not really a Tettigarctidae. I took the bug home and looked in our books and found that it was really a Cicadidae which is related to the Tettigarctidae. They as very similar, but the Tettigarctidae are only found in Australia. The Cicadidae are in America. Sorry about the confusion.”

My first reaction was to bust out laughing; but my second reaction was wonderment.  As time passed I was extended an invitation to dinner at this family’s home to meet the father of these children.  I spent a lovely evening conversing with the whole family–not just the adults–about a wide range of things.

Perhaps what left the deepest impression on me that evening was the relaxed intelligent conversation I was having with children who looked me straight in the eye, asked me questions, and listened to my replies. I felt free to ask about their philosophy of homeschooling and why they chose to make such a serious counter cultural commitment to it. I also mentioned my curiosity about the insect research.

The mother helped me to understand that education was only part of the broader formation of her children’s lives. Life is filled with opportunities for learning, like the discovery of the bug on the way to church, and the discovery of what specific type it, in fact, was.

I was amazed and frankly embarrassed that something so simple and natural had escaped my grasp until getting to know that family.

All of this came to mind when I read of the recent ruling by the European Court of Human Rights that the parental rights of two homeschooling German parents were not violated when:

In August 2013, a group of at least 20 police officers and social workers raided the Wunderlich home and took away their four children. ADF International, the legal group representing the parents, claimed that the action left the family traumatized.

The children were placed in a children’s home for three weeks. Though they were eventually returned to their parents, their legal status was not clear. The children were enrolled in a school from 2013 to 2014.

Homeschooling has been illegal in Germany since 1918 and the Court ruled that:

“Based on the information available at the time, the domestic authorities had reasonably assumed that the children were isolated, had had no contact with anyone outside of the family, and that a risk to their physical integrity had existed,” the court said.

The court acknowledged that the parents later submitted learning assessments showing that the children had “sufficient knowledge, social skills and a loving relationship with their parents,” but this information was not available to officials when they decided to withdraw parental custody in a temporary and partial manner.

In other words, the state acted out of ignorance presumptuously seizing children from their home. And yet a court, allegedly dedicated to human rights, has ruled the parent’s rights were not violated? When the state can seize healthy, social, and intelligent children from loving parents simply for educating their children according to their conscience no rights worth the name exist.

Parents have a natural right and responsibility to raise and educate their children, not the state. It is also parents who know best the needs of their children and who have the greatest incentive to make positive choices for their formation, not politicians and meddling bureaucrats.

Not all families are willing or able to effectively home school their children but, when many of our schools struggle to form children intellectually and morally, homeschooling parents who choose to make that commitment should be applauded for their effort and not presumed guilty of negligence.

I shudder to think what might have happened to that first homeschooling family I met had they lived in Germany. Would they too have had their children taken from them? I have stayed in touch with this family all these years and watched these children grow up.  The two little boys are now both physicians and fine young men. Homeschooling was a blessing to this family, a blessing that allowed them to be a blessing to each other, and which equipped them to be a greater blessing to the world.


This article has been republished with permission from Acton Institute.


Google Manipulated YouTube Search Results To Program Users' Behavior


Authored by Mac Slavo via,

In a new leak that can be accurately labeled “the smoking gun,” Google has been busted manipulating search results on YouTube in order to manipulate social behaviors and control minds. An internal discussion thread leaked to Breitbart News reveals that Google regularly intervenes in search results on its YouTube video platform.

According to Breitbart, the existence of the blacklist (terms Google considered sensitive) was revealed in an internal Google discussion thread leaked to Breitbart News by a source inside the company who wishes to remain anonymous. A partial list of blacklisted terms was also leaked to Breitbart by another Google source. Some of the blacklisted terms included “abortion,” and terms related to the Irish abortion referendum, Democratic Congresswoman Maxine Waters, and anti-gun activist and communist, David Hogg.

In the leaked discussion thread, Breitbart further reported that a Google site reliability engineer hinted at the existence of more search blacklists, according to the source. “We have tons of white- and blacklists that humans manually curate,” said the employee. “Hopefully this isn’t surprising or particularly controversial.”

According to the source, the software engineer who started the discussion called the manipulation of search results related to abortion a “smoking gun.”

The software engineer noted that the change had occurred following an inquiry from a left-wing Slate journalist about the prominence of pro-life videos on YouTube and that pro-life videos were replaced with pro-abortion videos in the top ten results for the search terms following Google’s manual intervention.

“The Slate writer said she had complained last Friday and then saw different search results before YouTube responded to her on Monday,” wrote the employee. “And lo and behold, the [changelog] was submitted on Friday, December 14 at 3:17 PM.” –Breitbart

The manual (human) adjustment of search results by a Google-owned platform  contradicts a key claim made under oath by Google CEO Sundar Pichai in his congressional testimony earlier this month. Pichai actually said that his company does not “manually intervene on any search result.” A Google employee in the discussion thread drew attention to Pichai’s claim, noting that it “seems like we are pretty eager to cater our search results to the social and political agenda of left-wing journalists.”

And it cannot get more dystopian than that. Hitler insured his propaganda minister was able to manipulate the minds of many during his reign as a tyrant. Journalists in America are now no better and they are using Google to alter the minds and morals of otherwise good people. We live in strange and disturbing times.

Please read Breitbart‘s entire article here. There is much more information!


Stockman Slams "Deep State Handmaid" NYTimes Over Trump Smear: "Are You F**king Kidding Me?"


Authored by David Stockman via The Ron Paul Institute for Peace & Prosperity,

The Donald has been on a red hot twitter rampage, and he's completely justified. Actually, we didn't think the Russian Collusion Hoax could get any stupider until we saw the New York Times' Friday evening bushwhack.

The trio of authors, apparently self-tortured victims of the Trump Derangement Syndrome, actually had the gall to print a story in the once and former Gray Lady of journalistic rectitude which was nothing more than an ugly smear on the sitting President of the United States - one that would have done Joe McCarthy proud:

In the days after President Trump fired James B. Comey as FBI director, law enforcement officials became so concerned by the president’s behavior that they began investigating whether he had been working on behalf of Russia against American interests, according to former law enforcement officials and others familiar with the investigation.

The inquiry carried explosive implications. Counterintelligence investigators had to consider whether the president’s own actions constituted a possible threat to national security. Agents also sought to determine whether Mr. Trump was knowingly working for Russia or had unwittingly fallen under Moscow’s influence.

It doesn't get lower than that. The only thing that they didn't mention was presidential Treason, but it's hard to say that "working in behalf of Russia against American interests" would constitute anything less.

So exactly what did the trio of wet behind the ears nincompoops at the New York Times—Adam Goldman, Michael Schmidt and Nicholas Fandos—dig up from the diarrhetic bowels of the FBI that warranted the above characterization?

Why, it is apparently the following, which is surely a red hot smoking gun. That is, one that condemns the FBI, not Trump; and shows that the NYT, which once courageously published the Pentagon Papers and had earned the above sobriquet for its journalistic stateliness, sense of responsibility and possession of high virtue, has degenerated into a War Party shill—not to say the journalistic equivalent of a comfort woman: Mr. Trump had caught the attention of FBI counterintelligence agents when...

...he called on Russia during a campaign news conference in July 2016 to hack into the emails of his opponent, Hillary Clinton. Mr. Trump had refused to criticize Russia on the campaign trail, praising President Vladimir V. Putin. And investigators had watched with alarm as the Republican Party softened its convention platform on the Ukraine crisis in a way that seemed to benefit Russia.

Well, for crying out loud!

Any journalist worth his salt would know that Trump's July 2016 shout-out to the Russians was a campaign joke. At best, it was merely an attempt to cleverly state in one more way the running GOP theme about Hillary's missing 30,000 emails. How many times before that had Sean Hannity delivered his riff about Hillary's alleged hammer-smashing of 13 devices and acid-washing with BleachBit of the missing emails?

More importantly, how in the world of constitutional government, free speech, and contested elections does Trump's refusal to criticize a foreign leader that we we're not at war with constitute something worthy of a counter-intelligence investigation by the FBI?

Indeed, in the case of the Ukraine resolution at the GOP convention, the issue was about making the GOP's prior pro-Ukraine platform even more hawkish, which Trump thought was a bad idea on policy grounds.

Besides, the Democratic platform ended up more dovish than the GOP's final wording. And, no, the FBI didn't think to investigate the Dems for being squishy soft on support for the crypto-Nazi's who took control of Ukraine during an illegal, US funded/supported coup on the street of Kiev in 2014.

What we are saying is that the trio pictured  here—one of whom graduated from Harvard in 2015 and the other two not much older—don't seem to even know that foreign policy is a debatable issue. Or that the American people actually voted into office a candidate who took the other side of Imperial Washington's unwarranted demonization of Putin and made no bones about his desire for a rapprochement with Russia.

Actually, as to pursuing rapprochement, so did: 

  • JFK, after the near catastrophe of the Cuban Missile Crisis; 

  • Lyndon Johnson, after the Seven Days War during his meeting with Kosygin at Glassboro NJ; 

  • Richard Nixon, with the ABM Treaty, detente and his visit with Brezhnev in Moscow; 

  • Jimmy Carter, when he signed the SALT-II agreement; 

  • Ronald Reagan, when he went to Moscow to virtually end the Cold War; and 

  • Bill Clinton, when he sent a multi-billion IMF aid package to Yeltsin to help him get re-elected in 1996. 

The fact is, all of the above presidential policy initiatives were heatedly debated in Washington during a period when the US and Soviet Union each had roughly 9,000 nuclear warheads pointed at the other. But that did not lead to FBI counter-intelligence investigations of politicians—to say nothing of sitting Presidents—who took the "wrong" side of these thoroughly democratic debates.

And that includes the outright "peace" candidacies of Gene McCarthy and Bobby Kennedy in 1968 and George McGovern in 1972. Indeed, shortly thereafter it was the Church Committee in the US Senate that aggressively investigated the CIA and FBI, not the incipient Deep State which investigated the elected politicians of that era.

Stated differently, Senator Lloyd Bentsen would have to said to the trio pictured below, "I knew Neil Sheehan, David Halberstam and Seymour Hersh—and you are no Sheehan/Halberstam/Hersh!"

In that regard, your editor did not know the latter three personally back in the day. But those of us on the anti-war barricades during the Vietnam era read them assiduously; and we did not mistake their honest journalistic coverage of that calamitous foreign policy episode for Robert McNamara's lie-filled talking points and genocidal "body counts".

Indeed, back in those days mainstream journalists tended to be the nemesis of the Deep State (yes, it has existed ever since WWII), not it's handmaid.

For instance, in the 1980s Congressman Ed Boland's amendment stopped the effort of neocons in the Reagan Administration to undermine the duly elected "Sandinista" government of Nicaragua. But back then, the press went after the meddlers and interventionists in the national security bureaucracy, not Congressman Boland and the Congressional majority which voted to shackle the Deep State.

In fact, several of the Reagan meddlers went to prison—not to sinecures at CNN or NBC.

Moreover, the alleged "communist" threat in those days was on America's doorstep in central America, not thousands of miles away on Russia's doorstep, as in the case of the Ukraine and Crimea.

Have the three knuckleheads ever read a history book?

Do they not know, for instance, that there are virtually no Ukrainians in Crimea (the population is mainly Russian, Tartar etc.); that the latter was a integral province of Mother Russia for 171 years after it was purchased from the Ottomans by Catherine the Great in 1783; and that Crimea only was added as a territorial appendage to the Socialist Republic of the Ukraine in 1954 by the order of the Soviet Presidium as a door prize to the comrades in Kiev who had supported their favorite son, Nikita Khrushchev, in the bloody battle for Stalin's succession?

Has it not occurred to them that when the scourge and historical anomaly of the Soviet Empire finally slithered off the pages of history that untangling the utterly artificial borders that had enslaved 350 million people might be a tad messy, and that the rump-state of Russia had a valid security interest in the manner in which it unfolded?

Likewise, did they perchance ever read the strident warnings of the father of Soviet containment and NATO, Professor George Kennan, about the foolishness of extending NATO to the very borders of Russia; and especially after Bush the Elder and his Secretary of State, James Baker, had promised Gorbachev in 1989 that in return for his acquiescence to unification of Germany that NATO would not be extended by "a single inch" to the east?

In fact, have they ever bothered to contemplate why NATO even exists any longer; or the anomaly of the North Atlantic Treaty Organization sending troops to the Hindu Kush to make war upon the Taliban tribesman who had actually defeated the Soviet Empire—and 27 years after the Soviet Union was no more?

That is to say, in the whole ragged to-and-fro of post-Soviet eastern Europe and Washington's arrogant claim to sole superpower status, is it really so hard to see that there are two sides to the debate; and that dissent from Washington's hegemonic claim to say what can and can't happen in Kiev, the Donbas and Crimea is actually the more rational course, and certainly not tantamount to treason?

Or consider what happened to Ronald Reagan's misbegotten infatuation with the Star Wars will-o-wisp of a nuclear shield. The latter had the military-industrial complex drooling over the implied trillions (in today's $) of funding, and the Deep State giddy
with the thought that the putative Star Wars shield would unleash it from the bonds of MAD (mutual assured destruction) and thereby open the path t0 US global hegemony.

Needless to say, the intrepid mainstream journalists of the 1980's still had the Sheehan/Halberstam/Hersh investigative spirit and courage about them. It did not take too many years for their exposes to make Star Wars the laughingstock it actually was, and for their rebukes to the Deep State narrative to embolden the bipartisan opposition on Capitol Hill to essentially shut it down.

At the end of the day, there is no other way to say it. The Goldman/Schmidt/Fandos types of the present era are not journalists at all; they are lazy, intellectually corrupted, mendacious stenographers of Imperial Washington's oppressive group think.

After all, only a decade or two ago any journalist who typed the words "....whether Mr. Trump was knowingly working for Russia or unwittingly fallen under Moscow's influence" would have suffered tremors and palpitations for the very phrasing of it.

Don't these kids know them thar words is McCarthyite code for unmasking commie traitors?

Here's the thing. Until the groupthink of the Imperial City congealed into what amounts to worship of the Warfare State after 9/11, any self-respecting journalist who discovered that the FBI had opened a counter-intelligence investigation of a sitting president for the preposterous reasons outlined in the NYT story would have been all over this insidious affront to constitutional government like a screaming banshee.

That is, under what imaginable constitutional scheme does a second tier law enforcement agency have the prerogative to investigate the duly elected President because he fired the FBI director for good cause; rejected the prevailing anti-Russia foreign policy for solid reasons of national interest; and knew that the Russian collusion meme was Democrat sour grapes for loosing the election and said so publicly, loudly and frequently, as is his prerogative?

In the old days, journalists often had the integrity and summoned the courage to speak truth to power. By contrast, the trio of sanctimonious brats pictured above were too lazy, stupid or mendacious to even connect the dots.

That is, this ballyhooed counter-intelligence investigation was launched the very next day after Comey was fired by two of the most compromised people in the entire Obama Administration posse of anti-Trump election meddlers--if not criminals—led by former CIA director John Brennan.

We are referring to the acting FBI director Andrew McCabe, later fired for leaking to the media and lying about it and his legal council, Lisa Page. After the release of literally tons of anti-Trump SMS messages with her lover-boy, the FBI agent Peter Strzok, over the past 12 months what kind of self-respecting journalists would not see the red flags flying in every direction?

By now any one who knows how to Google, also knows or should know that Strzok and Page sent text messages that suggest they were discussing opening up a counterintelligence investigation against Trump even before Comey’s firing. And when it happened, their exchanges left no doubt:

“And we need to open the case we’ve been waiting on now while Andy is acting,” Strzok wrote to Page on the day of Comey’s ouster.

So there you have it. McCabe, Strzok and Page are Deep Staters if the term has any meaning at all. Yet here is why Lisa Page thought Trump was such a threat to national security that she and her colleagues were justified in unilaterally suspending the constitution and prosecuting the elected President of the people because they disagreed with his foreign policy positions.

Indeed, by her own closed door testimony to the House committee (now leaked) it is obvious that Lisa Page is a light-weight numbskull when it comes to thinking about national security. For it turns out, she doesn't even claim that Russia is a military threat to America or that Putin has aggressive intents for territorial conquest.

No, it seems his sin is that he doesn't embrace Washington's self-conferred role as the Indispensable Nation and may even be in mind of thwarting Washington's noble effort to spread "our democratic ideals" and bring the blessings of Coca-Cola, long pants and the ballot box to the otherwise benighted peoples of the planet.

You only need a decent regard for the mayhem that the Washington War party has brought to the world—from the jungles of the Mekong Valley, to the Hindu Kush, to Mesopotamia, the Levant, North Africa and Latin America, too—to say are you f*cking kidding?

'In the Russian Federation and in President Putin himself, you have an individual whose aim is to disrupt the Western alliance and whose aim is to make Western democracy more fractious in order to weaken our ability, America’s ability and the West’s ability to spread our democratic ideals,' Lisa Page, a former bureau lawyer, told House investigators in private testimony reviewed by The Times..... 'That’s the goal, to make us less of a moral authority to spread democratic values,' she added. Parts of her testimony were first reported in the Epoch Times.

Many involved in the case viewed Russia as the chief threat to American democratic values.

'With respect to Western ideals and who it is and what it is we stand for as Americans, Russia poses the most dangerous threat to that way of life,' Ms. Page told investigators for a joint House Judiciary and Oversight Committee investigation into Moscow’s election interference.

As to the last bolded line, we will not bother to wonder how a pint-sized economy of $1.5 trillion compared to America's $20 trillion and all of NATO's $36 trillion, with a military budget of $61 billion compared to NATO $1.05 trillion, is going to do what Khrushchev failed to do—bury us!

So we fully appreciate why the Donald is on the rampage...

'Wow, just learned in the Failing New York Times that the corrupt former leaders of the FBI, almost all fired or forced to leave the agency for some very bad reasons, opened up an investigation on me, for no reason & with no proof, after I fired Lyin’ James Comey, a total sleaze!' the president tweeted.

'Funny thing about James Comey,' he continued. 'Everybody wanted him fired, Republican and Democrat alike. After the rigged & botched Crooked Hillary investigation, where she was interviewed on July 4th Weekend, not recorded or sworn in, and where she said she didn’t know anything (a lie).'

'the FBI was in complete turmoil (see N.Y. Post) because of Comey’s poor leadership and the way he handled the Clinton mess (not to mention his usurpation of powers from the Justice Department). My firing of James Comey was a great day for America.'

"He was a Crooked Cop,” Saturday’s tweetstorm concluded, “who is being totally protected by his best friend, Bob Mueller, & the 13 Angry Democrats – leaking machines who have NO interest in going after the Real Collusion (and much more) by Crooked Hillary Clinton, her Campaign, and the Democratic National Committee. Just Watch!” 

..., and in this instance, couldn't more wholeheartedly agree.


Tuesday, January 15, 2019

Here’s What Happens When The Gender-Gap Index Is Adjusted For Bias.


The apparently neutral phrase, “gender inequality,” is not neutrally understood in our society. It normally conjures up women’s lower numbers in male-dominated corporate directorships and STEM professorships or other high-status domains that are in fact accessible only to a sliver of the male population, never mind the narrower female sliver.

Social scientists allegedly strive for a much more holistic picture, especially when setting nations beside each other for a global assessment of gender inequality.

One frequently cited authority is the Global Gender Gap Index (GGGI), introduced in 2006, and relied on by policy makers worldwide. But a provocative new study, released Jan. 3, takes critical distance from GGGI premises, providing its own set of metrics for analyzing gender inequalities and arriving at some startlingly disparate conclusions.

Entitled “A Simplified Approach to Measuring National Gender Inequality,” authors Gijsbert Stoet from the U.K.’s University of Essex, and David C. Geary from the University of Missouri, contend that the GGGI is unreliable, because it is “biased to highlight women’s issues.”

They argue that the GGGI does not measure men’s areas of disadvantage, such as compulsory military service, harsher punishments for the same crime, and workplace deaths — 95 per cent male.

By definition, they say, the GGGI “excludes the possibility that men can be less well off than women – this is because the GGGI focuses on women’s advancement.” As well, they contend that the GGGI uses indicators that are only relevant to elite women, and that the GGGI includes indicators more reflective of choice than of discrimination.

The researchers propose a truly gender-neutral set of metrics for calculating equality scores, named the Basic Index of Gender Inequality (BIGI). BIGI focuses on three factors: educational opportunities (literacy, years of primary and secondary education), healthy life expectancy (years expected to live in good health), and overall life satisfaction which, taken together, are the “minimum ingredients of a good life.”

These metrics can be applied anywhere, regardless of income level, cultural paradigm or national economic development tier. In the words of the study abstract, because of its focus on issues that are important to all men and women in any nation, BIGI “better captures variation in gender inequality than other measures, with inclusion of outcomes that can be favourable or unfavourable to either sex, not simply unfavourable to women.”

Stoet and Geary calculated BIGI scores over five years (2012 through 2016) for 134 nations, representing 6.8 billion people. They relied on GGGI reports published by the World Economic Forum and the Gallup World Poll for data.

To their surprise, they found that using the BIGI as a yardstick, men are on average disadvantaged in 91 countries, while women are disadvantaged in 43 countries, most of them economically under-developed.

Sometimes the deviations from parity are quite small or even negligible, as for example in the case of Israel, Saudi Arabia, Singapore, Turkey, China and Switzerland.

Saudi Arabia? Parity? Yes. Because equality between the sexes does not mean men and women are doing equally well, on average, “just that they are more or less equal within their life circumstances.” While women in countries with a poor reputation for gender equality may fall behind men in one area, men may fall behind in another area, cancelling out both scores.

Saudi Arabia is a highly developed nation in which women fall behind in education, but score higher on healthy life expectancy and life satisfaction. This may seem counterintuitive to Western women, but culture, with the expectations it imposes, is a strong determinant of what constitutes “satisfaction.”

A Saudi wife in a polygynous marriage to a wealthy husband might find life quite satisfying, while a poor Saudi man with almost no marriage prospects at all may find life quite unsatisfying.

Canada’s figures put it amongst the countries with a slight female advantage. Feminists may not be delighted to hear this. But given the BIGI metrics, it makes sense.

Canadian women’s life expectancy is seven years longer than men’s. Men’s health in Canada is on average poorer than women’s. They are more prone to alcoholism and drug abuse, and more vulnerable to violence.

Male suicide rates are considerably higher, especially during Family Court battles, where women are greatly advantaged (and which causes great life dissatisfaction in fathers).

Canadian men are nine times more likely than women to be imprisoned. They perpetrate more crimes, to be sure, but they also receive harsher sentences for the same crimes, even when committing the same crime in tandem.

Men constitute about 85 per cent of homeless adults. Canadian men show higher dropout rates at every level from primary school to university. Canadian women own a disproportionate share of private wealth. (I could go on.)

This is an important study, not nearly as simplistic as it may seem in this reductive summary, and worth reading — without gender bias if possible — before judging.

This article has been republished with permission from


{Image Credit:  Pixabay, PixababyLicense]


The Heart of the Matter: Families and Fatherhood


In “Back To Discipline: Disparate Impact Reflects Disparate Reality”, Heather MacDonald applauds the Federal Commission on School Safety’s repudiation “of disparate-impact analysis.” She writes:

Disparate-impact analysis holds that if a facially-neutral policy negatively affects blacks and Hispanics at a higher rate than whites and Asians, it is discriminatory. Noticing the behavioral differences that lead to those disparate effects is forbidden. In the area of school discipline, disparate-impact analysis results in the conclusion that racially neutral rules must nevertheless contain bias, since black students nationally are suspended at nearly three times the rate of white students. In 2014, the Obama administration relied on this methodology to announce that schools that suspended or expelled black students at higher rates than white students were violating anti-discrimination laws.


MacDonald gives evidence demonstrating why this policy increased violence and poor discipline in the classroom. Faced with possible charges of discrimination if they dismissed a disproportionate number of black students, regardless of their offenses, school administrators allowed troublemakers and gang members to remain in classrooms. Once they realized the school would not punish them for their misbehavior, these miscreants spread disorder, including physical attacks on teachers and fellow students.


That such permissiveness  would only encourage aberrant behavior may seem obvious to even casual observers, but apparently not to some school and government officials. They maintained the policy, classroom discipline in many schools took a dive, and the schools suffered accordingly.

Embedded in MacDonald’s  article are the real reasons for juvenile crime and incivility, both in and out of school: the breakdown of families and absentee fathers.

About 33% of American children live in single-parent households. Among African-Americans, approximately 72% of children live with a single parent, most often the mother. Family breakdown, MacDonald asserts, is the “cause of urban crime and disorder.”

As is so often the case, however, we look to the government for Band-Aids rather than getting to the root of a problem. Many Americans, liberals and progressives, yes, but even a large number of conservatives, turn to the government for help when there are problems with our young people. Every time these people genuflect to the federal government, they not only allow that government to take the place of the traditional family, but they also hand over more power to an entity that is both inept and greedy for control.

Many observers understand the devastation done to our culture and society by the implosion of the family. Which raises the question, as MacDonald does in the article: Why don’t our politicians and others begin a campaign to “revalorize fathers and men?”

Such a campaign would cost little money but might bring great gains in nearly all parts of our society. Think what might happen if local leaders, business executives, pastors, teachers, the media, Hollywood, members of the Congress, and the president himself made an effort, whenever the opportunity presented itself, to stress the importance of the intact family. Think what might happen if we began a serious national dialogue on the importance of fatherhood. Think what might happen if we put aside our current disparagement of men and manliness, our assaults through the law and culture on marriage, and the sneering attacks, mainly from radicals in so many of our universities, on the traditional family unit, and instead promoted the family: mothers, fathers, and children.

Such a program might diminish the battalions of inmates in our prisons, decrease the discipline problems in our schools, increase the capabilities of our students, and reduce monies spent on federal welfare programs.

Perhaps most importantly, by making the family once again the foundation stone of society and by stressing the importance of men and fathers to our culture, we might recover our diminishing freedoms, liberties lost to the government as the family has broken down, a crack-up predicted over fifty years ago by Daniel Patrick Moynihan.

“The family is the test of freedom,” G.K. Chesterton wrote, “because the family is the only thing the free man makes for himself and by himself.”

Revalorize fathers and men. Revalorize the idea of family. And maybe in the process we will revalorize the United States of America.


[Image Credit:  Francisco Osorio, Flickr, CC BY 2.0]