Saturday, June 27, 2020

"Disturbing Parallel To HIV": COVID-19 Can Cause Depletion Of Important Immune Cells, NY Times Admits

"Disturbing Parallel To HIV": COVID-19 Can Cause Depletion Of Important Immune Cells, NY Times Admits Tyler Durden Sat, 06/27/2020 - 17:30

Once again, it looks as though what was once being peddled as Covid-19 "conspiracy theory" on our site appears to have turned out to have been accurate news reported months before the mainstream media. Go figure.

As far back as February 1, 2020, when the pandemic was only starting to attract attention and the China-influenced mainstream media was politically inclined to minimize the severity of the disease before pulling a sharp U-turn and now going full bore with a narrative of just how dangerous it is to reopen the economy, we published an article referencing an Arxiv pre-print which found that the Covid-19 genome contained "HIV Insertions", stoking fears that the virus was an artificially created bioweapon.

While the mere suggestion that this virus was man-made - nevermind sharing discrete segments of its genetic structure with HIV - sparked outrage among the well-paid mercenary enforcers of the First Amendment known as "fact-checkers" who are employed by such biased organizations as Twitter and Facebook to stifle any line of inquiry that runs contrary to whatever dominant narrative has been blessed by the Zuckerbergs and Dorseys of the world, it was none other than the man who discovered the HIV virus back in 1983, that confirmed our suspicions saying that "the virus was man-made."

We then reported in April that Professor Luc Montagnier, the 2008 Nobel Prize winner for Medicine, claimed that SARS-CoV-2 is a manipulated virus that was accidentally released from a laboratory in Wuhan, China, and added that the Wuhan laboratory, known for its work on coronaviruses, tried to use one of these viruses as a vector for HIV in the search for an AIDS vaccine.

This is the same conclusion we explored months before the mainstream media when we suggested that COVID-19 may have emerged from a lab in Wuhan instead of being man-made. For being early in what is increasingly looking like a very accurate assertion, a Buzzfeed journalist wrote a hit-piece about Zero Hedge that resulted in us being banned from Twitter.

But here we stand, months later. We have since been reinstated on Twitter and the journalist in question has been  fired for plagiarism after BuzzFeed's new editor-in-chief, Mark Schoofs, published "A Note To Our Readers" detailing eleven instances where he lifted content from other publications without attribution going back to 2013, including his hit-piece against Zero Hedge.

Our lab origin "conspiracy theory" has gained widespread support and is the focus of several international investigations into the CCP lab. And just this week, we found out that and the HIV link that we first reported on months ago, and followed up on last month, continues to only get stronger.

As the mainstream media desperately plays catch-up, The New York Times released a piece yesterday called "How the Coronavirus Short-Circuits the Immune System" and said that "In a disturbing parallel to H.I.V., the coronavirus can cause a depletion of important immune cells, recent studies found."

"Now researchers have discovered yet another unpleasant surprise. In many patients hospitalized with the coronavirus, the immune system is threatened by a depletion of certain essential cells, suggesting eerie parallels with H.I.V.," the article says. 

The assertions could explain why few kids get sick and why a "cocktail" of treatments may be needed to bring the coronavirus under control, similar to how H.I.V. is treated. 

Dr. John Wherry, an immunologist at the University of Pennsylvania said that research now points to “very complex immunological signatures of the virus.” The NY Times wrote: 

In May, Dr. Wherry and his colleagues posted online a paper showing a range of immune system defects in severely ill patients, including a loss of virus-fighting T cells in parts of the body.

In a separate study, the investigators identified three patterns of immune defects, and concluded that T cells and B cells, which help orchestrate the immune response, were inactive in roughly 30 percent of the 71 Covid-19 patients they examined. None of the papers have yet been published or peer reviewed.

Researchers in China have reported a similar depletion of T cells in critically ill patients, Dr. Wherry noted. But the emerging data could be difficult to interpret, he said — “like a Rorschach test.”

"It is hard to separate the effects of simply being critically ill and in an I.C.U., which can cause havoc on your immune system,” Wherry continued.

The researchers found that the immune system could actually become impaired because it overreacts to the virus, as happens in sepsis patients. They found that in Covid-19 patients, there was a marked increase in a molecule called IP10, which sends T cells to where they are needed in the body. Patients with coronavirus, as well as SARS and MERS, see a level of IP10 molecules that go up and stay up, which can create "chaotic signaling" in the body. 

Dr. Adrian Hayday, an immunologist at King’s College London said: “It’s like Usain Bolt hearing the starting gun and starting to run. Then someone keeps firing the starting gun over and over. What would he do? He’d stop, confused and disoriented.”

This causes some T-cells, usually prepared to destroy the virus, to become confused and act "abberrantly". Recovery becomes tougher for those over 40 because the thymus gland, which is responsible for creating new T-cells, becomes less efficient. In kids, the thymus glad works much better. 

An overreaction of the immune system, causing things like a cytokine storm, may also be able to be treated by blocking a molecule called ID6, which helps organize immune cells. 

“There clearly are some patients where IL-6 is elevated, and so suppressing it may help. But the core goal should be to restore and resurrect the immune system, not suppress it,” Hayday said. 

Hayday believes an antiviral treatment may make the most sense, given the newfound information: “I have not lost one ounce of my optimism. A vaccine would be great. But with the logistics of its global rollout being so challenging, it’s comforting to think we may not depend on one.”

Recall, we had previously written that the South China Morning Post reported a study by Chinese scientists found that the novel coronavirus uses the same strategy to evade attack from the human immune system as HIV. Specifically, both viruses remove marker molecules on the surface of an infected cell that are used by the immune system to identify invaders, we noted.

The researchers warned that this commonality could mean Sars-CoV-2, the clinical name for the virus, could be around for some time, like HIV.

We wrote in May:

And here is where things gets very messy for the frauds known as "fact-checkers" who - without any actual facts or knowledge - threw up all over our February report that the coronavirus shared genetic material with HIV: while the mainstream media did everything in its power to censor any suggestions that Covid and HIV having genetic similarities (after all who wants to be threatened by an airborne version of AIDS) now it is none other than the South China Morning Post which writes that "earlier studies found the spike protein of the new coronavirus had a structure that allowed it to enter many types of human cells and bind with them. The same structure was also found in HIV, but not in other coronaviruses found in animals such as bats and pangolins."

At this point, the New York Times and the SCMP appear to have pointed out all the exact same facts - that the coronavirus not only shares genetic material with HIV, but also evades and cripples the immune system in a similar way to HIV - that got the "highly respected" StatNews to accuse Zero Hedge of spreading an "infodemic."

As we said last month:

"We wonder if StatNews author John Gregory will append his "analysis" now that actual "facts" have emerged showing that it's not the infodemic we should be afraid of, but the censordemic."


Glenn Greenwald breaks down new 'bogus' charges against Julian Assange

Co-Founding Editor of The Intercept Glenn Greenwald discusses developments in the indictment against Wikileak's founder Julian Assange. About Rising:  Rising is a weekday morning show with bipartisan hosts that breaks the mold of morning TV by taking viewers inside the halls of Washington power li


Catherine Austin Fitts – We are Watching the Mother of All Debt Entrapments


Former Assistant Housing Secretary and publisher of the Solari Report, Catherine Austin Fitts joins Greg Hunter to talk about her latest report, entitled ‘The Injection Fraud’ about the massive vaccine gambit currently in play and how this a vital part of the central bankers’ “Global Reset”.

Fitts cites the first meeting of the central bankers after the adoption of the new Federal Financial Accounting Standards 56 (“FASB 56″), in Jackson Hole, WY in August 2019. At the time, the Governor of the Bank of the England, Mark Carney did an interview, saying ‘The dollar’s not working and we need to shift to a global mechanism.”

Fitts says, “Clearly, a decision was made to just go ahead and do it and what do we see in September? We see, in September the Fed move to intervene in the repo market. Since then, if you look at the last 12 months, M1 is up by 21% and M2 is up by over 30% and we’re watching massive programs of, literally the Fed buying the market.


“As that happens, the World Economic Forum website comes out and announces the ‘Great Reset’, which…is sort of the marketing for the non-financial people of exactly what’s going on.

“So, what we’re seeing is a reengineering of the global financial system and governance system, the ‘Just Do It’ method and of course, a very important part of that is we see a lot of smart money get out of the market in the top in January, in February and then March, a push to basically use police powers created through the healthcare system, to shut down a huge part of the independent economy, globally.

“So, small business, small farms shut down across the board, throwing both the emerging markets and many small business into debt traps. So, we are watching the mother of all debt entrapments going on globally and that means we’re in for a very radical reengineering and of course, that’s what we’re seeing in the US…

“We have a tracker, where we’re tracking the COVID deaths by state and party affiliations of the governors and mayors, and one of the things you can see, you have 37 Fed locations and banks and branches across the country. Guess how many of them had violent protests?

“…if you map out all the cities that have a Fed Bank, a Fed branch or the headquarters for the Fed Board of Governors – you have 37 locations – you have 12 banks, you have 24 branches and one board headquarters – 33 of those locations had violent protests…

“Absolutely, the Fed is behind this. The central bankers got together and said, ‘Okay, we’re going to begin the Global Reset. We’re calling it, “Go Direct.”‘

“They launched a plan. Blackrock has now been hired by three of the central banks. They’ve been hired by Canada, Sweden and the United States. The conflicts of interests are massive but but you’re talking about a fundamental reengineering.


“Now, I’ll give you my theory on what the healthcare police powers are all about. And that is, if you are going to re-engineer the global currency system, what they want to do is…they want to go to a system where 7 billion people around the planet are literally integrated into the cloud and can operate with an all-digital system that is the equivalent of a credit on a company store.

“It’s a control system and if you look at what they’re talking about putting into these injections [vaccines] or doing with them, you’re basically talking about a slavery system. You’re talking about integrating into people’s bodies. I always tell people, Bill Gates put an operating system on your computer that gave somebody a backdoor and made you update it constantly. And the excuse was, ‘there’s a new virus’.

“Well, they’re gonna play the same game with your bodies, because if you can get brain-machine interface into a human body or you know, a tattoo on a human body, it’s part of the Quantum Dot tattoos and integrate them into the to the Jedi and other clouds at the US government, then you can cut out all the state and local middlemen. You can cut out a lot of overhead and basically have everybody…on the system and that’s why I keep saying, ‘crypto is not a currency. It’s the end of currencies.'”

“But you’re talking about an all-digital system, where they can turn your money off and on. You know what this is called, you’re a Christian. It’s called the Mark of the Beast. That’s what they’re trying to do, here.

“They’re trying to extend the life of the dollar, build a global mechanism to manage the financial system – so, shift it more out of the United States and then essentially, hook everybody up into the cloud.”

“You have to fight vaccine mandates…I wrote an article called the injection fraud, which you just mentioned what I said is these these are not vaccines under the laws of medicine. And if you look at what they’re talking about putting into some of these things – and this is very experimental – but you have nano-particles and nanotechnology. You have things that alter your genes. These things are very experimental and they’re talking about using them without animal trials or the appropriate kind of trials, normal trials that would take you two years.

“Now, they’ve tried for many, many years to come up with a vaccine for coronavirus they’ve never been able to do it. So, I think one of the reasons they want contact tracing is so that they can deal with all the deaths, disability and sickness that’s going to come from you know injecting biowaste into human bodies.

“One of the things that’s in this is aborted fetal tissue. So, you’ve got aborted fetal tissue, you’ve got heavy metals, you’ve got the history of these injections is very, very ugly and it’s one of the reasons 54% of the children in America have chronic disease, because of all the foreign matter that’s been going into our veins from this stuff.

“So what I said in ‘The Injection Fraud’ is this is not medicine. A surveillance tracker is not medicine. I mean what Bill Gates is proposing to put the equivalent of a Microsoft operating system in your body that can be hooked up to their cloud and so you can be hooked up to the AI and all that data can make the AI very, very smart, including teaching robots how to do your job.

“So, this is a very dystopian vision of the future but make no mistake about it, if you could implement this vision, there are trillions of dollars to be made implementing this vision. If you look at the new system, the new system is very much what some people call a Transhumanist System but it’s not a new currency, it’s not a cryptocurrency, it’s not a digital currency, it’s a credit system, where they can cut you off centrally.

“If you look at the police powers, they’re suggesting, under the rubric; the excuse of ‘healthcare’, they’re talking about you can’t go to the store unless you let us inject you with these mystery ingredients. You can’t work unless you do. You can’t do this, you can’t do that…

“They’re talking about…hiring tens of thousands of contract tracers who can come into your home and force you to be tested and if they find you positive, now remember many of these tests have 50-80% false positives, they can quarantine you and they reserve the right to take people out of your home and take them to government or private camps, separately.

“So, they’re asserting the right to come into your home and take your children. So, I come in, I test you, I say you’re positive – with tests which are totally unreliable – and almost everybody has coronavirus in their bodies and we’re asymptomatic. It’s like saying we have cells…

“So, you’re talking about creating police powers that are going to give you very tyrannical central controls. This is ripping up the Constitution to an exponential degree…

“Donald Trump as far as I can tell is playing along [with the vaccine agenda]. Now, it’s interesting Donald Trump resisted shutting down the economy but then he went ahead and did it and Donald Trump, who’s resisted vaccine mandates proceeded, after through Bill Gates and Fauci’s credibility was destroyed, for very good reason, on many different points – Donald Trump promoted and started a program called Operation Warp Speed, and Operation Warp Speed is being run by the former head of research from GlaxoSmithKline, who’s a bio electronics expert and according to the Financial Times, is one of the leaders on brain-machine interface.

“Now, he’s got Operation Warp Speed set up to coordinate with the Department of Defense and he’s arranged for the Department of Defense, I think to buy – I think it’s six hundred million it’s basically two syringes for the whole population, set up with digital coding so that they can basically put in a database, who got what vaccine, etc.

“And frankly, if you look at how that’s all organized and set up, Trump has said, ‘Well, it’s for people who want the vaccine. If you look at the effort to get mandates, state-by-state-by-state and basically use the health code and the pretext of a flu defined as a ‘pandemic’ to radically increase central police powers, I think we’re talking about the greatest experiment – basically, this is non-consensual human experimentation, of taking nanotechnology, gene editing, gene-altering materials, heavy metals, biowaste, aborted fetuses and basically experimenting, injecting it into millions, if not billions of people. I mean, this is a this is a serious violation of the Nuremberg Code and the Nuremberg Principles…


“The fight in the campaign is not a fight over who runs the White House, the fight in the campaign is a fight over the [money] spigot. And what you have to understand about everything that’s going on right now, between our taxes and our pension funds, we’re financing this.

“And unfortunately, I’ve talked a lot on the Solari Report about entrainment technology and the propaganda on the media. You have a combination of propaganda and entrainment that has persuaded at least 40% or 50% of Americans that these injections are okay…

“You have two choices, one is freedom. One is slavery. And everybody’s gonna have to choose. There’s no navigating around it…I had one subscriber ask me, ‘Should I do real estate or precious metals?’ and I said, ‘Look, if you don’t have an army, it doesn’t matter where your assets are you’re gonna lose them. If you don’t have an army to protect them. That’s what you have to understand there’s no getting around this…

“They’re basically coming to steal all your assets. Even Jim Cramer said, ‘This is the greatest wealth transfer in the history of our civilization…Basically, what they just did was they shut down all small business and all small almost all small farms and ranches and proceeded to let the large corporations scarf up all that market share.

“And that’s how they can expand M2 by 31%, because if you shut down Main Street, that’s very deflationary and it offsets the inflation of all the money you’re printing and giving your friends. So you’re talking-  if you look at the play of printing the money and engineering asset bubbles and the variety of things you’re doing with it at the same time, you’re throwing all small business and independent business into a into a debt trap.

“There was just a great article in Financial Times about KKR and some of the other private equity firms have been wanting to buy certain businesses for a long time. Well, they’ve all just gotten slammed down and they’re picking up equity pieces for pennies on the dollar. It’s exactly what they did in Asia in 1997, when they when they crashed Asia. So, this is an old game…

“I will bet you a dollar, Greg that when they came out of Jackson Hole with the ‘Do Direct’ plan, they had KKR and all those folks lined up and they had six months to get ready, to figure out how they were gonna buy everything. I mean Blackrock was running – designing and running the plan..

“Right now, if you look at everything that’s going on, we are financing the people who are attacking and destroying us. Well I’ve been talking about this for 20 years…

“First of all, you want to be safe. If they’re gonna defund the police, let me explain what’s gonna happen. If they defund the police, you have, since World War II, networks in the United States, organized crime networks. Who do you think runs the narcotics trafficking? Who do you think runs the illegal gambling, the illegal gun-running?

“I mean, that is all completely networked and you know, the money feeds the banking system and every dime is known. Every wire gets batched and goes through the New York Fed but but that’s a highly-managed business. If you defund the police, guess who’s gonna be the the most powerful player in the neighborhood? It’s gonna be those organized crime networks, because they’re gonna be well-armed.

“Now, let’s say you’d flip the money over to social services. Social services, the last time I checked and I’m not current on this, but when I left Washington, you had all the big defense contractors running around and getting contracts from Social Services, including the contractor who was sued for sex slave trafficking in Eastern Europe [Dyncorp] was picking up child support contracts.

“So if you flipped that money over to Social Services and you’ve got enough of the defense contractors in there – BAM – at high speed, you’re gonna bring up the Stasi network and they’re gonna have the police powers, under contact tracing you know to basically come after your kids. I would like to point out the people who led the launching and presentation for contact tracing and are promoting the contact tracing bill in the Federal Government…were all the people who flew Epstein Air.

“It’s Bill Clinton – we have a great Solari toon with Alan Dershowitz and he’s got a pin that says, ‘Epstein Air’ and he’s talking about, ‘Of course, they can come into your home and and take your kids and it’s all perfectly legal’ – which it’s not – but when did the facts ever stop Alan Dershowitz?

“How you fight this is stop worrying about the Presidential Election, start worrying about your Sheriff. This is gonna be trench warfare and we’re gonna have to fight it out, one county and one city council at a time…


“Now, I want to talk about the ‘Second Wave’. So, the Second Wave is supposedly going to come in September. But here’s what’s going to happen in September…one of the best authors who’s written about the history of vaccinations is Forrest Moretti and he has a series of books and he does a masterful job of explaining the game…

“Let’s say, Greg that you spray pesticides on the farms for agriculture and it makes everybody sick. If you admit that, then of course, you have a big liability, the insurance companies lose a lot of money – no good.

“So instead, you blame a virus and then you invent a vaccination for the virus and you give everybody the vaccination and instead of losing money on the liability, you make money and…you stop using the pesticide and you attribute everybody getting well to the vaccination, which isn’t true. They stop getting sick because you stop using the pesticide. So, it’s an old game and it’s designed to manage your liabilities.

“Now, why are they saying there’s going to be a Second Wave? Do you know what’s going to happen in September-October? They’re gonna finish getting all the Starlink satellites up and they’re going to start turning 5G on and they’re turning it on all over the country and – if you look at the history of radically increasing EMF radiation…that’s gonna make a lot of people sick, just like the vaccinations or the injections.

“I don’t call them vaccinations, because they’re they’re not medicine. The injections are gonna make people sick and the 5G’s going to make people sick and they need a cover story, because they need for their plans of rolling out digital currencies and rolling out lots of robotics. They need 5G.

“5G was invented by the Israelis for crowd control. It’s a crowd control technology. It’s not really a telecommunications technology. But if you look at all their plans, whether it’s driverless cars or or digital credit systems to replace the dollar, they need massive bandwidth and of course, they know it’s going to make a lot of people sick, so it wouldn’t surprise me if the Second Wave is the cover story for all the extraordinary damage that’s going to be done to our health by the injections and if you look at the numbers, it’s clear that the people who had the year’s flu shot were much more likely to get Covid-19 and to suffer from it or die…

“For 400 years, we’ve had a model of the human, a model of the economy a model of the planet that’s a machine model and it’s fostered great productivity in some ways but…the model fails because it doesn’t reflect how life really works and to me, what we’re watching is the ultimate gasp of a failing model, because it’s produced a culture of people who are very hypermaterialistic and they literally don’t understand life and they don’t understand reality.

“And for them, if you’re gonna maintain central control on a machine model, you need to stop people from resonating with divine intelligence and resonating with living things and resonating with each other and get everybody hooked into the machine and that’s what this is really about. Are we going to be governed by God? Are we going to be governed by central powers who are controlling us through the machine?


“So [why do they want to get rid of] Trump? It’s a combination of Trump’s style, number one because the style upsets and works up a lot of people. Now, some people like that, because what they want is a reality TV show. The other thing is that you know Trump is intolerant of certain practices and and the swamp is much deeper and much more ingrained than he thought.

“One of the reasons, I think you’re watching this Global Reset is the leadership has just decided – because, the process of trying to out them on Pizzagate and on very significant financial and legal liabilities was pretty scary to them and if you look at their criminal liabilities both on the financial fraud in the health care fraud and the pedophilia and all this other stuff the adrenochrome is a very bad, scary story. They just feel that they have too many liabilities to change their ways.

“So you’ve got a very deep system of people, both the politicians, legislators, the bureaucracy, who’s deeply addicted to swamp practices and has very extraordinary liabilities and they’re very afraid and so they’re betting the ranch that they can continue to centralize and this is this is World War III. This is what World War III looks like…

“Let’s go back to Go Direct. If you download nanotechnology in everybody that gives you a brain machine interface, you don’t need state and local government. You can just lock them up into the Jedi Cloud at the Department of Defense and manage them directly. That’s what Go Direct means, just like Go Direct means you don’t need Epstein to launder all the money or all $21 trillion, you can just Go Direct. If you look at all the different things the Fed is doing now – in fact, that’s what they’re doing, they’re Going Direct – you’re gonna cut out all middle management. Here it comes.


“[In the mass riots], you had a layer of what looked to me like professional mercenaries who are in there to provide air cover for variety parties but also to basically assassinate. If you look at some of the police killings that have been going on as this has been going on, I’ll betcha it’s professional mercenary.

“Now, you can’t send in that many teams to that many cities to basically burn and loot and wreck, all on a paid basis – they’re paid – those are paid jobs. That’s not going to happen unless the US military either stands down or is part of doing it.

“Now, I told you when FASB 56 passed, that this was secret monies for secret armies. I will bet you any amount of money that those 50 to 100 protests in American cities were financed by FASB 56.

“Now, I think one of the reasons the military was being very careful is they don’t want to mess with their $738 billion budget by pissing off either side but the other thing is you know if the contracts were negotiated through them with their budget to do those violent protests when they when they negotiated the contracts, they they didn’t imply that they were going to send in military teams to stop you

“So, imagine if you’re a defense contractor, you’ve negotiated contracts to manage and do the command structure for violent protests and 50 cities and then suddenly the military announces they’re sending in a military team to stop you, wouldn’t you say, ‘Wait a minute. That’s not my scope of work. I want 10 times the amount of money or my guys aren’t going in.

“If I’m a professional mercenary, I’m not going to go in and play that role if you’re gonna send a military team in to stop me. I’m gonna split. So, we’re talking about a reality TV show, here. This is not real.

“Now, I will tell you, if all the people doing the looting would stop being paid and encouraged and supported doing the looting, they wouldn’t have done it, so the question is, what was the military role? Did they stand down or were they an active part of doing it? Was it the intelligence agencies? What was the command structure?

I assure you, you can’t do anything in America – I mean imagine – do you think the NSA isn’t listening and watching everything? I mean, surely you’ve seen the movie, ‘Enemy the State. They have the whole country covered, from sea to shining sea by satellites and they listen to every phone call…


“We have to choose. Do we want to be do we want to be part of a divine intelligence or do we want to be controlled by a machine intelligence and be hooked up to the DoD Jedi contract with brain machine interface and mind controls?

“We have a choice. We don’t have to accept slavery so I, you know I think this can absolutely be turned around but we’re going to have to stand and we’re going to have to fight…

“Do not call it a vaccine and I’ll tell you why. Under the law, vaccines are free from liability…so, I won’t call it a vaccine because it’s injection fraud…We have to take that protection of criminal and civil liability away from them. They need to be held liable and if you look at the harm that that these injections could do, they could kill a lot of people, Greg and that could bankrupt a lot of pharmaceutical companies, if they don’t have protection…

“You need to get to know your Sheriff and your local enforcement. Do not defund your local police. If you can have a way to work with the small business and small farmers in your area and start to network and organize how are we going to be safe? How are we gonna have energy? How are we gonna have fresh, healthy food? All of these are jobs that can be brought back in the community, if we start to talk to each other and organize. There’s a lot of capital and a lot of intelligence but we’re going to have to decide we need to have these independent sources and we’re going to protect them…

“Covid-19 is a currency war. It’s the Global Reset. You put everybody in a debt trap, including the emerging markets, because remember, Europe can print the money that its debt is denominated in and the United States can but the emerging markets…can’t so you know, you’re kind of putting the BRICS back in a debt trap. But once you understand Covid-19 as part of the currency war, everything makes much more sense.”

Alexandra Bruce

Contributed by Alexandra Bruce



At Social-Justice Law School, Feelings Trump Facts



On May 27th, Claudette Beals-Clayton called the Toronto police from a high-rise apartment in the city’s High Park North neighbourhood. Her 29-year-old daughter, Regis Korchinski-Paquet, was in a state of crisis and acting violently. Beals-Clayton wanted officers to take Korchinski-Paquet to the city’s Centre for Addiction and Mental Health.

Police arrived and coaxed Korchinski-Paquet into the building’s hallway. Then the woman asked if she could go to the bathroom before leaving, and police let her re-enter the apartment. Several officers followed her while family members waited outside. Moments later, the family reportedly heard “Mom, help!” Not long after that, Korchinski-Paquet plunged 24 floors to her death.

In the heat of the moment, a devastated Beals-Clayton told reporters that police “came in my apartment and shoved [my daughter] off the balcony.” A man identifying himself as Korchinski-Paquet’s cousin made similar claims on Instagram. Before waiting for any kind of corroboration, reporters from Vice repeated these claims and vaguely linked the death to George Floyd, the Minneapolis man shown on video suffocating to death with a police officer’s knee on his neck last month. Like Floyd, Korchinski-Paquet was Black. The obvious implication here was that her death might be a race-motivated murder.

I spent five years working in one of Canada’s biggest newsrooms, so I know that it’s typically seen as irresponsible to publish such incendiary claims without the credible account of an eyewitness or some other form of proof. And so, even amidst the decline in journalistic quality and capacity on many municipal news desks, I was still surprised when I saw more reputable outlets pick up the Vice story, including the implication that racist police officers may have thrown a suffering woman to her death from a balcony.

Even if police officers were inclined to do such an unspeakable thing—is it credible that they would do so in broad delight, with at least four fellow officers and multiple family members close by? Korchinski-Paquet reportedly had been suffering seizures for years, and this was not the first time the family had summoned the police. Previous visits had involved reports of an occupant brandishing a knife. In the tragedy that unfolded last month, a police source told a local newspaper, Korchinski-Paquet had barricaded the door using an appliance, and then slipped while trying to escape by jumping onto a neighbour’s balcony. I can’t corroborate that story. But it certainly makes a lot more sense.

The day after this tragic incident, Beals-Clayton’s lawyer was asked by the Toronto-based Globe and Mail newspaper about the allegation that Korchinski-Paquet was pushed. He responded cryptically that Korchinski-Paquet’s mother “had not shared this version of events with me.” Later, the lawyer told reporters, “I can verify on behalf of the family that this”—Korchinski-Paquet’s being pushed or thrown—“was not witnessed by the mother. However, at the time of the statement, that is what the mother believed.”

Yet the damage was done. Local anti-racism activists made Korchinski-Paquet a poster child amid the larger campaign to discredit the police. And in many social-media forums, it is now simply taken for granted that the police had some nefarious role in Korchinski-Paquet’s death. As of this writing, at least one Canadian magazine still has a tweet up, declaring, “Family members and witnesses have reported that Regis Korchinski-Paquet, a 29-year-old Black woman, was killed by being shoved off an apartment balcony by Toronto police on the evening of May 27, 2020.”

It’s certainly true that Toronto’s Black community suffers more than its proportionate share of violent police interactions. CBC News reports that, of the 52 people who died in interactions with Toronto police between 2000 and 2017, over a third (19) were Black (all men, no women)—a proportion that is more than three times the Black share of the city’s population. Though most were armed at the time of death, and mental illness often is a complicating factor in such cases, the numbers raise serious questions about whether police are too quick to use lethal force against Black men. Yet they tell us nothing in particular about the tragic fate of Korchinski-Paquet.

Her death triggered an investigation by Ontario’s Special Investigations Unit, which occurs automatically whenever there is a police-involved death in the province. Police Chief Mark Saunders, who happens to be Black, spoke out to say that “a lot of [the narrative around Korchinski-Paquet] is misinformation, a lot of it is lies,” and pleaded for the public to “wait for the truth.” But amid complaints of media leaks, Beals-Clayton refused to speak to investigators, while a GoFundMe organized by Korchinski-Paquet’s sister raised more than $450,000. Anti-racism advocates organized marches through the downtown core to demand “Justice for Regis.” The incident is also being cited as proof that Toronto needs to “defund the police,” a cause that’s now being seriously considered by city councillors. On June 8th, Chief Saunders announced his resignation, saying that he wants to focus on preventing the problem of “young Black boys killing young Black boys.”

Even if lawyers have a bad reputation, it would serve us well to be a little more lawyerly in situations like this, waiting for facts and evidence to emerge before jumping to sweeping, emotionally charged conclusions. Yet at Toronto’s Osgoode Hall Law School, where I study, no one’s seemed much in the mood for fact-finding. The student union released a statement on behalf of the Black Law Students’ Association (BLSA) declaring that Korchinski-Paquet was killed “as a result of police violence” that “systematically targeted towards Black people.” Other school groups immediately joined the chorus. We were instructed that “individuals who are not Black” are hereby required to “act in solidarity with the Black community by listening to and amplifying the voices of Black people by starting with ‘I hear you, I believe you.’”

Which is awkward, because even the family’s own lawyer admitted early on that he did not “believe” the uncorroborated reports that police officers murdered Korchinski-Paquet in cold blood. And so it’s not clear why anyone should be required to “amplify” the voices of those who repeat this erroneous claim. In fact, spreading misinformation can inflict real harm. Yes, it’s terrible that about one Black Torontonian per year dies at the hands of the police, and those officers who behave illegally should be investigated and prosecuted as criminals. But from the rhetoric that’s now become common, one might think that Toronto police were conducting some kind of continual pogrom in Black neighbourhoods. That claim is unsupported by the numbers, and it likely makes Black Torontonians unnecessarily fearful.

“We are all disgusted by the death of George Floyd and countless others who have been killed by racism and police brutality,” I wrote on my school’s Class of 2022 Facebook page. “However, I would encourage Osgoode students to do some research before repeating the claim that Regis Korchinski-Paquet was the victim of violence, racism or police brutality. There is not one shred of evidence that her death was anything but a tragic suicide or accident. The claim that she was pushed was made in the heat of the moment by distraught family members who did not witness her final seconds, and her family’s lawyer has walked back that unsupported claim. Regis was in the middle of a mental health crisis and police were, by all accounts, trying to save her life. As future lawyers, [we shouldn’t] make baseless, incendiary claims… I can’t think of a more serious accusation than hate-inspired murder. Let’s wait for some evidence before making these kinds of allegations.”

About 45 minutes later, my post disappeared. The student union deleted it. The class president, whose name I won’t mention here, then wrote to me to explain why:

We received many complaints and requests from students in the Osgoode community that your comment be removed. I think that it is only fair that you are informed as to why: Right now, many students in our community are hurting, grieving, and are looking to each other for support. Students felt that your post was inciting dismissal of the anti-black racism that black students are consistently facing and particularly now, in a time where students are looking for support, they did not appreciate this inquisition that they felt was harmful to the communities that are already hurting. We want to make a safe space for Black, Indigenous, and Students of Colour in our Osgoode spaces and sometimes, especially now, this means elevating the voices of the communities impacted the most. This is why we supported and shared BLSA’s statement. [W]e are not the triers of fact here and this is not a trial for the facts, it is a chance to show support and solidarity to our fellow students and it is important we leave space for that and let these students feel safe and supported. When students feel unsafe or attacked in our Facebook spaces, we take action to ensure the community is a safe one and for this reason, we deleted the comment. I hope you understand that this is not an attack on you, rather it is the way we choosing to support the students who need it most.

Nothing about my post was “inciting dismissal of anti-black racism.” So I suggested to the student union that they rethink their decision, and I asked for a copy of the applicable rules. To which I received the following response: “We operate based on our Constitution, which is posted publicly on our website. While we did not post specific rules to the Facebook page, we will do so now. Our removal was in line with Article VI, s. 11.j: ‘Actively solicit the opinions of equity seeking groups and work with those groups and other partners for the promotion of a discrimination free, equitable, and safe campus.’ The complaints we received were from equity seeking groups and individuals who felt that post did not contribute to a discrimination free, equitable and safe campus, which is why we removed it.”

Let’s be clear: This was a spat among law students about the contents of a social-media page. In the grand scheme of things, it’s not a big deal, and I’m not trying to play victim. But I do want to highlight what this incident says about an approach to truth-seeking that is now fashionable even among soon-to-be lawyers. According to this new approach, apparently informed by critical race theory and postmodern approaches to truth-seeking, evidence doesn’t matter much, because there is no “objective truth.” What matters is that we assess how much power people have, based on superficial characteristics like race and gender, and then let the most oppressed person’s version of events prevail. In the eyes of many of my peers, I must accept that the police killed Korchinski-Paquet because certain Black voices on campus say she was killed by police. If I don’t, I’m “not contributing to a discrimination-free, equitable and safe campus.”

Some professors also see the world this way, apparently. In the first weeks of my constitutional-law class, Professor Jefferey Hewitt told students that while Western legal systems are focused on getting to the “actual” truth, Indigenous people understand truth as something “fundamentally different.” To them, truth isn’t “objective and singular,” Hewitt says. “You cannot say from viewpoint A that B is wrong because you didn’t see what they saw.”

It’s true that different people can have different perspectives, but it’s wrong to assert that there is no objective truth. The Earth is round. The sky is up. Two plus two equals four, even if the party says it’s five. Korchinski-Paquet was either pushed or not, and the whole point of the legal system is to get to the “actual” truth of such questions through the systematic presentation of evidence and a clash of arguments.

Yet it’s impossible to know how many of my classmates are truly vested in the more fashionable postmodern approach, since, as this episode shows, a small handful of highly motivated actors now have the power to shut down discussion. And since no one wants to be cast as the villain, most of us just play along. Several students whom I’d never spoken with before reached out to tell me they were upset about the fact that my post was deleted, but won’t say so publicly because everyone is keeping tabs on everyone, and even a single social-media misstep can cost you a job following graduation.

They’re not crazy to entertain such fears. My whole first-year class was required to sit through a lecture earlier this year from Lisa Taylor, a journalism professor at Toronto’s Ryerson University. She walked us through examples of social-media posts that—justifiably, in her view—led various public figures to be pushed out of their jobs. One was a former high-ranking manager at CBC who was hounded out of the organization after he’d chimed in on a flippant, politically incorrect tweet. Taylor indicated her approval for this result. She also gave us a list of progressive Twitter accounts that we should follow if we wanted to get on the winning team.

One of the students who wrote to me told me that he wasn’t sure what to make of Korchinski-Paquet’s death, but that he “wholeheartedly supports [my] attempt to have a dialogue about it. Lawyers are the agents for our truth-seeking endeavours in the justice system, and that requires interrogating our deepest assumptions, even when it may feel uncomfortable.” At the same time, he added: “Many of us who find the decision questionable will not publicly speak out about it for risk of damaging our professional reputation with future colleagues and employers. This aversion comes at the cost of pursuing the truth, but it’s a decision we all need to personally make given our individual circumstances.” Ironically, that statement—and at least three others that I’ve saved—came from people whom the student union would describe as members of “equity seeking groups.”

Thankfully, there are a few law-school refuges for students like me—including the Runnymede Society, a non-partisan club that promotes discussion about liberty, constitutionalism, and the rule of law. These are causes that once would have attracted broad public support among law students. But in 2020, they’ve become surprisingly risqué. When I helped organize an event about the lack of ideological diversity in law schools, someone kept ripping down the posters. Needless to say, posters promoting “the Marxist Solution to Conflict with Iran” (who knew there was one?) stayed up.

Many Quillette readers already are quite familiar with the manner by which postmodernism, critical theory, and related doctrines have made extensive inroads into the liberal arts, corroding our ability to define objective reality. But the more recent metastasis of these ideas into law is especially worrying, because respect for objective truth, due process, the presumption of innocence, and equality before the law are all bedrock principles of our legal tradition. You can’t try a case if everyone is allowed to inhabit mutually exclusive realities based on their own impression of what makes them feel “unsafe.” Even panel discussions, which once might have featured competing views on these trends, increasingly have been turned into rallies favouring one point of view. I once attended a guest lecture in property law, at which all three speakers shared the view that Indigenous people hold title to all of what we call Canada.

I should say that there do remain many professors who believe in the value of debating ideas. Osgoode’s associate dean of students, for instance, accepted the Runnymede Society’s invitation to moderate a panel discussion on the United Nations Declaration on the Rights of Indigenous Peoples (UNDRIP). I had long objected to UNDRIP on the basis that it grants rights on the basis of race, which I see as incompatible with liberal, democratic values (a view that was articulated at the event by Queen’s University law professor Bruce Pardy). But Osgoode professor Karen Drake, an expert in Indigenous rights, among other subjects, presented a persuasive argument in support of UNDRIP as an instrument that protects rights asserted on the basis of nationality, not race. Moreover, she made her case without claiming some higher system of knowledge that supersedes conventional legal analysis, or otherwise appealing to meta-rules that serve to dismiss whole areas of discussion as unsafe or racist. As someone skeptical of UNDRIP, I found Professor Drake helped me see the other side of the argument. We need more of this.

As I enter my second year of law school, I’m left wondering how many of my classmates are going to be professionally functional once they graduate. Do they think they’ll be able to hit “delete” on arguments that they regard as upsetting? Do they expect judges to accept their clients’ claims on the basis of membership in an “equity seeking group”? It’s possible they believe that by the time they’re practicing lawyers, their ideological fellow travelers will have been appointed to the bench. And who knows—that may happen. But if not, their careers may be quite short. My hunch is that a good many of them will simply show up in court and not know how to make an argument.


Josh Dehaas is a writer at the Canadian Constitution Foundation. He tweets at @JoshDehaas.

Featured image: Justice For Regis march, Toronto, May 30th, 2020. Photo by J. Hargrove.   

The post At Social-Justice Law School, Feelings Trump Facts appeared first on Quillette.


Friday, June 26, 2020

"Volunteer" Hawaiians Turn "Paradise On Earth" Into An Island Of Snitches

Travel publications around the world have referred to the Hawaiian islands as “paradise on earth.” But a much darker and more disturbing trend that was once relegated to the continental United States has taken Hawaii by storm.


Strzok’s newly discovered FBI notes deliver jolt to ‘Obamagate’ evidence

The belated discovery of disgraced FBI agent Peter Strzok’s January 2017 notes raises troubling new questions about whether President Obama and Vice President Joe Biden were coordinating efforts during their final days in office to investigate Trump national security adviser Michael Flynn -- even


“Free Speech” In The US Empire Is As Illusory As “Free-Range” Eggs

In what Shadowproof’s Kevin Gosztola calls “a not-so-subtle effort to criminalize the journalism of an adversarial media organization that the United States has spent the last decade working to destroy,” WikiLeaks founder Julian Assange has been hit with another superseding indictment by the U


“Free Speech” In The US Empire Is As Illusory As “Free-Range” Eggs


In what Shadowproof’s Kevin Gosztola calls “a not-so-subtle effort to criminalize the journalism of an adversarial media organization that the United States has spent the last decade working to destroy,” WikiLeaks founder Julian Assange has been hit with another superseding indictment by the US Department of Justice.

Shadowproof, WSWS, and Consortium News all have solid and informative write-ups on this new development. The indictment adds no new charges, is riddled with inaccuracies, glaring plot holes, and amateurish errors, relies heavily on testimony from a literal convicted pedophile and diagnosed sociopath, and appears to be little more than a feeble attempt to legitimize the injection of the words “hacking” and “hackers” into the prosecutorial narrative.

To quote Assange’s partner Stella Morris, “They didn’t throw the book at Julian. They threw bits of paper found crumpled up in the discard pile.”

 — @wikileaks

The persecution of Julian Assange is a transparent and iron-fisted attempt by the US government to globally criminalize the publication of leaks which embarrass the US-centralized empire, thereby drawing a firm line which journalists all around the world know never to cross.

This is the inverted totalitarian oligarchic empire at its most overtly tyrannical. The imprisonment of Assange was the part of the movie where the villain finally reveals their true face for the monster they’ve always been, where it became clear to anyone paying attention that the US power alliance is as authoritarian and intolerant of real dissent as any tin pot dictator.

But this is the rarest form of imperial censorship. Normally, wherever possible, the power structures which dominate human civilization prefer to do so out of sight and out of mind, ideally having the inmates of the prison serve as their own wardens.

 — @aaronjmate

Aaron Maté, who as my regular readers already know is one of my favorite journalists on the planet right now, has an interesting new post on Twitter which reads (emphasis my own): “It’s incredible to see book after book churn out the same discredited Russiagate hype. When I talked to an editor at a major publisher about doing a book — you know, based on actual facts — they told me their friends would be mad at them if they published it, so that was it.”

This is a perfect example of the soft tyranny which does most of the key oppression of speech in the empire today. There are no laws prohibiting the publication of Maté’s award-winning journalism on the subject of the mass psychological operation known as Russiagate. Nobody who published such a book would be tortured and facing a 170-year prison sentence like Julian Assange.

Yet the speech remains restricted. Major publishers won’t touch Maté’s work. You won’t see him as a guest panelist on MSNBC or CNN. Not because those platforms are forbidden from doing so, but because they don’t choose to. As former MSNBC host Krystal Ball explained last year, an attitude of conformity has been manufactured from the top down to ensure than those who rise to the top of the most influential platforms are the ones who know how to toe the establishment line without being told. People are hired from the same conformity-enforcing universities by executives who were selected by media-owning plutocrats based on their willingness to protect the status quo their plutocratic kingdoms are built upon, and only those who play ball within that system ever rise to major positions of influence.

 — @ggreenwald

I am reminded of a famous contentious interview between Noam Chomsky and British journalist Andrew Marr in which Chomsky derided the false image mainstream journalists have of themselves as “a crusading profession, adversarial, we stand up against power,” saying it’s almost impossible for a good journalist to do so in any meaningful way in the mass media.

“How can you know that I’m self-censoring? How can you know that journalists are-” Marr objected.

“I’m not saying you’re self-censoring,” Chomsky replied. “I’m sure you believe everything you’re saying. But what I’m saying is that if you believed something different, you wouldn’t be sitting where you’re sitting.”

I am also reminded of a quote from the movie My Dinner with Andre:

“I think that New York is the new model for the new concentration camp, where the camp has been built by the inmates themselves, and the inmates are the guards, and they have this pride in this thing that they’ve built — they’ve built their own prison — and so they exist in a state of schizophrenia where they are both guards and prisoners. And as a result they no longer have — having been lobotomized — the capacity to leave the prison they’ve made or even to see it as a prison.”

Did you know that depending on what country you live in, so-called “free-range” eggs are often anything but?

In the USA, for example, all that is required for chickens to be considered “free range” is for them to have “access to the outdoors”. In practice what this means is that thousands of birds are crammed into tiny, unhygienic, multi-platform barns designed to fit as many animals as possible, and then a tiny door is opened on the far end of the barn leading to some small porch area which most of the chickens never even find their way to.

The USDA imposes no requirements that the chickens ever go outdoors, or even on what “outdoors” technically needs to look like, so in practice what you get is a bunch of “free range” hens never venturing anywhere near the door, and having no reason to try to do so.

This is exactly what the much-touted “free speech” of the western world looks like in practice when it comes to platforms with major influence. The door is technically open for The New York Times or CNN to elevate voices which dissent from the official imperial narrative about what’s going on in the world, but they choose not to, because a system has been designed which disincentivizes them from doing so.

Mass media outlets are the factory farms of speech. Nothing about it is free, humane, or organic about either such construct. A healthy world, which we will hopefully we one day see, will have neither.


Thanks for reading! The best way to get around the internet censors and make sure you see the stuff I publish is to subscribe to the mailing list for my website, which will get you an email notification for everything I publish. My work is entirely reader-supported, so if you enjoyed this piece please consider sharing it around, liking me on Facebook, following my antics onTwitter, checking out my podcast on either Youtube, soundcloud, Apple podcasts or Spotify, following me on Steemit, throwing some money into my tip jar on Patreon or Paypal, purchasing some of my sweet merchandise, buying my books Rogue Nation: Psychonautical Adventures With Caitlin Johnstone and Woke: A Field Guide for Utopia Preppers. For more info on who I am, where I stand, and what I’m trying to do with this platform, click here. Everyone, racist platforms excluded, has my permission to republish, use or translate any part of this work (or anything else I’ve written) in any way they like free of charge.

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The Outing of ‘Lady G’: Humiliating a Closeted Gay Republican in the Name of LGBT Rights



In Washington, D.C., rumors have long swirled around a certain long-time Republican senator, a perennial bachelor, being not-so-secretly gay. But the long-simmering issue came to a boiling point recently when a concerted effort to “out” the senator, dubbed “Lady G,” went viral. The result was widespread derision and mockery of the senator. And a cadre of left-wing LGBT activists suddenly found themselves doing a complete reversal, arguing that it’s now actually okay to involuntarily “out” someone—expose a closeted person’s sexuality—if one finds their viewpoints to be disagreeable.

The sordid affair began when a male sex worker and gay porn star named Sean Harding publicly accused the senator of contracting his services—allegations that effectively outed the man as gay, to the extent one believes them.

“There is a homophobic republican senator who is no better than Trump who keeps passing legislation that is damaging to the lgbt and minority communities,” Harding wrote in a tweet that quickly went viral, receiving more than 100,000 likes. (I won’t be linking to it, because I don’t see any point in helping him add to the hit count.) “Every sex worker I know has been hired by this man. Wondering if enough of us spoke out if that could get him out of office?… I cannot do this alone. If you’d be willing to stand with me against LG please let me know.”

This prompted another male sex worker to post an article on the open blogging website Medium detailing an alleged encounter he had with “Lady G.” This article not only named the Republican senator, and outed him as gay, but included humiliating and demeaning intimate details about the elderly senator’s body. It was cruel and painful to read. The article has since been taken down, but the details it exposed will live forever on the Internet.

Throughout it all, many LGBT activists cheered on the mob—despite outing being a practice that normally is considered immoral and cruel by most gay people. Some explicitly stated that they were perfectly happy to violate their own principles if that’s what it took to ensure the Republican senator loses reelection. “Outing is a brutal tactic that should be reserved for brutes,” wrote LGBT activist Dan Savage. “Lady G more than qualifies.”

Savage was among a number of community members who tried to claim that they were acting on some well-defined, legalistic moral exception to the normal rules. Gay journalist Yashar Ali opined that “anyone who is in the closet should never be forced to come out or outed,” since it’s “a deeply personal journey and anyone who engages in outing closeted people is cruel beyond description.” But of course, “there is one exception”: public figures who support anti-LGBT policy. They are fair game.” How convenient.

Another widely-circulated tweet called “Lady G” a “traitor” and a “hateful turncoat.” Another read: “[The senator] isn’t a terrible person because he’s gay. He’s a terrible person because he has spent his life legislating against gay rights.” Meanwhile, many ostensibly “progressive” Twitter users circulated crude photoshopped images and memes demeaning the senator on the basis of his sexuality—an adult version of the sort of vicious bullying tactic that gay boys endure from bullies at schools across the United States. Even the mainstream LGBT media—including the Los Angeles Blade and Towleroad—jumped in on the story. Sadly, so did the Washington Post.

If reports are to be believed, the senator was allegedly not just sleeping with men, but soliciting prostitutes. That’s illegal, even if such laws are the subject of debate (especially within LGBT and progressive circles). But the prostitution angle didn’t feature prominently in the online hate campaign. The senator’s enemies don’t really care about the sex work. What they care about is the thoughtcrime committed by a gay politician who disagrees with progressive views and supports Donald Trump.

Let’s cut through the idea that these sexual doxers are doing angels’ work because they happened to be targeting a conservative. Political disagreement doesn’t justify this sort of cruelty. Ever. We are all human, and are morally obligated to treat others with a basic degree of dignity and respect—yes, even if you feel that a person hasn’t afforded you the same. Progressive LGBT activists who abandon their values so they can go all in on a digital hatefest are no better than the bigots they purport to oppose.

Still, it’s worth considering: Is the senator in question really a vicious “anti-LGBTQ” bigot who deserves to be taken down by any means necessary? Well, sure, “Lady G” has opposed gay marriage. And he voted against gay integration in the military during his many years in the Senate. But so did the current Democratic presidential nominee, Joe Biden—you know, the same guy most of these hashtaggers now openly endorse. The idea that this Republican senator has gone out of his way to vilify the LGBTQ community is unsubstantiated. He’s pretty much toed the Republican party line over the years. Yes, it happens to be a party line that’s out of step with most Americans on social issues. But if you don’t like it, vote it down at the polls. Don’t humiliate a man for his sexuality.

But even if “Lady G” had made opposition to LGBT rights the central theme of his political career, that still wouldn’t validate the cruel treatment that’s been meted out to him. People of good faith can disagree over issues such as gay marriage without necessarily being hateful bigots. Barack Obama opposed gay marriage as recently as 2011. Was he, too, the devil incarnate?

And here’s a larger question: Who gets to decide which politicians are “anti-LGBT” and which aren’t? The most powerful activist group within the US LGBT activist establishment, the Human Rights Campaign, has declared Donald Trump—the first president to enter office supportive of gay marriage—to be the “worst president on LGBTQ issues ever.” The group also regularly stakes out positions on many issues that many ordinary LGBT Americans find extreme.

That includes me. I support gay marriage, equality under the law, and advocate for LGBT inclusion and tolerance in the conservative movement as a right-of-center journalist. However, I don’t support the medical transitioning of young gender-confused children, or accept academic doctrines that postulate an infinite number of genders. Within Washington LGBT activist circles, this marks me as a mini-“Lady G.” My views even got me chased out of a gay men’s soccer league. I can only imagine what these trolls would do if someone offered them incriminating dirt on me. Just as they were quick to create a loophole that allowed them to out a senator they didn’t like, I’m sure they would have no problem creating a similar exception for me—or, indeed, for any LGBT person whose views they dislike.

More and more, you can always tell who the most puritanical social-justice advocates are. Gay or straight, they’re the ones doing logical backflips to justify viciousness and cruelty in the name of diversity and tolerance.


Brad Polumbo (@Brad_Polumbo) is an American political journalist and an opinion columnist at the Washington Examiner, a conservative political magazine based in Washington, D.C.

The post The Outing of ‘Lady G’: Humiliating a Closeted Gay Republican in the Name of LGBT Rights appeared first on Quillette.


Wednesday, June 24, 2020

Forbes Caught in Blatant Censoring Act

Disclaimer: The entire contents of this website are based upon the opinions of Dr. Mercola, unless otherwise noted. Individual articles are based upon the opinions of the respective author, who retains copyright as marked.


Tuesday, June 23, 2020

NASCAR, investigators confirm: 'Noose' was actually handle for garage door

A noose reportedly left inside a garage bay at Talladega Speedway as an alleged act of racist intimidation against Bubba Wallace, NASCAR's only black full-time driver, was actually a simple pulley attached to the garage's door, NASCAR and federal officials confirmed this week.


Was the Moynihan Report right? Sobering findings after 1965 study is revisited

New research released by the Urban Institute on Thursday comparing the social and economic status of African American families in 1965 to their condition today paints a troubling picture about their current state — and, by extension, the long-term economic survival of the collective black communit


The Father of Capitalism and the Abolition of Slavery



It has become a common trope that slavery and the slave trade is responsible for the industrial revolution, if not our entire modern prosperity. Slavery is often called capitalism’s “dark side.” A recent column in the Guardian claimed the slave trade “heralded the age of capitalism” and Guardian columnist George Monbiot said on Twitter: “The more we discover about our own history, the less the ‘trade’ on which Britain built its wealth looks like exchange, and the more it looks like looting. It meant extracting stolen resources and the products of slavery, debt bondage and land theft from other nations.” The same line has been taken by London Mayor Sadiq Khan, who tweeted: “It’s a sad truth that much of our wealth was derived from the slave trade.”

But what did the “father of modern economics,” Adam Smith, actually think about slavery? And is it responsible for our modern prosperity?

Adam Smith argued not only that slavery was morally reprehensible, but that it causes economic self-harm. He provided economic and moral ammunition for the abolitionist movement that came to fruition after his death in 1790. Smith was pessimistic about the potential for full abolition, but he was on the side of the angels.

Smith’s The Wealth of Nations, published in 1776, contains perhaps the best known economic critique of slavery. Smith argued that free individuals work harder and invest in the improvement of land, motivated by their interest in earning a higher income, than slaves. Smith refers to ancient Italy, where the cultivation of corn degraded under slavery. The cost of slavery is “in the end the dearest of any,” Smith writes.

His thinking about slavery can be traced further back. In the Lectures on Justice, Police, Revenue and Arms, delivered in 1763 long before Britain’s abolitionist movement was formalised, Smith writes:

Slaves cultivate only for themselves; the surplus goes to the master, and therefore they are careless about cultivating the ground to the best advantage. A free man keeps as his own whatever is above his rent, and therefore has a motive to industry.

Smith describes how serfs in Western Europe—in feudal relationships with lords—were progressively transformed into free tenants as they acquired cattle and tools. Harvests were more evenly divided between landlord and tenant to encourage better use of land, and tenants eventually progressed to simply giving the landlord a sum for lease. As government became more established, the influence of lords over the lives of tenants was also loosened.

Capitalism was, as Marx described, the next stage in human development after feudal slave relations. Smith’s commercial society is in direct opposition to a slave society. Smith, at his core, is an advocate for individuals being free to specialize and trade, including to trade their labor. Everyone acting with regard to their “own interest,” not because of coercion, creates general prosperity.

Smith’s case against slavery is proven by history: The huge uptick in human prosperity came largely after the end of feudal relations and the abolition of slavery and the slave trade. We are many magnitudes richer than when lords held slaves, or even chattel slavery proliferated in the Americas. The setting free of humanity led to extraordinary innovation and entrepreneurialism. This is only possible, as Smith argued, when individuals can benefit from the fruits of their own labor (slaves cannot hold property in their own name, and hence cannot trade or choose to specialise).

We didn’t become rich because a few hundred years ago people toiled on farms in awful conditions. In fact, the opposite. “It was precisely the replacement of human muscle power with that of steam and machines which did away with the vileness of chattel slavery and forced labor,” Tim Worstall has explained.

Nor did the slave trade fund the industrial revolution. Leading economic historian Deirdre McCloskey explains that the slave trade, and the goods produced by slaves, were a tiny portion of foreign trade in Britain. Additionally, slaves were not passive: From Jamaica to St Dominique they rebelled against their masters. Quashing these rebellions was not cheap. More broadly, McCloskey argues that the industrial revolution was spurred by domestic innovations and not trade or minuscule imperialist returns.

Put differently, if all that it took for a country to be rich was historic slavery then countries would be rich in proportion to their historic level of slavery, but this is not so. Just because America had grotesque slavery and got rich does not mean that America got rich because of slavery. Many countries that had extensive slavery in the past, such as former Spanish colonies in South America, are not particularly rich today. There are many alternative, more plausible explanations for human prosperity.

Additionally, just because some individuals made personal fortunes from slavery, does not mean that nations overall benefited very much. In fact, the average person not only got little or nothing materially out of the likes of the British Empire—they also had to pay huge expenses for its defence in various wars, up to and including their own lives. In any case, the claim that imperialism spurred the industrial revolution gets the timeline wrong: Empire required steam and steel ships, and hence came after the industrial revolution had already begun.

So in the end, slavery, the slave trade and imperialism were not only morally disgusting but also of dubious economic value. A small number of people profited from the trade—and they campaigned against abolition. But this should not be confused with a broader claim that our modern prosperity is built on benefits that went to a small number a few hundred years ago.

The moral case

Slavery wasn’t just bad economics. For Smith, slavery was inhumane and evil. In the aforementioned lectures, Smith discusses the brutal treatment of slaves in ancient Rome, where, in the night time “nothing was to be heard but the cries of slaves whom their masters were punishing”:

Ovid tells us that the slave who kept the gate was chained to it, and the slaves who manured the ground were chained together lest they should run away, and what was more cruel, when an old slave was incapable for work he was turned out to die on an island near the city kept for that purpose.

Smith also observed that:

[W]e may see what a miserable life the slaves must have led; their life and their property entirely at the mercy of another, and their liberty, if they could be said to have any, at his disposal also.

Smith’s revulsion at the idea of slavery may indicate some motivated reasoning in the economic arguments; he may have wanted to show that an alternative world without slavery would lead to prosperity in order to bolster the abolitionist case.

Smith was, nevertheless, notably pessimistic about the broader chances of abolition:

[S]lavery takes place in all societies at their beginning, and proceeds from that tyrannic disposition which may almost be said to be natural to mankind… It is indeed all-most impossible that is should ever be totally or generally abolished.

He even thought that as societies got richer they would be able to afford more slaves. Smith downplayed the likelihood that free or monarchical societies, or religion, would lead to abolition. At the time, the British Empire, and many others, were transporting millions of people from Africa across to the Americas in the extraordinarily violent and barbaric practice of chattel slavery—often justified by extreme racism and involving extensive torture and sexual exploitation.

Smith was, thankfully, wrong. This practice would come to an end. Over the coming decades Britain’s anti-slavery movement abolished slavery throughout the British Empire and helped spur the global abolitionist movement. (Chattel slavery never existed under English or Scottish law—though there were some imported slaves under the guise of domestic work.) Parliamentarian William Wilberforce worked, with researchers Thomas Clarkson and Zachary Macaulay, and Quaker and Anglican campaigners, on a life-long crusade against the barbaric practice from the late 1780s. This group became known as the “Clapham Sect,” residing in south west London. They brought attention to the issue, attained wide support from William Pitt to Edmund Burke, travelled the country, pioneered lobbying techniques such as parliamentary petitions, wrote pamphlets, printed badges, and held public meetings.

Smith has been widely credited with influencing the antislavery movement. His work has been described as a “generative site of abolitionist ideology.” Smith provided the economic case against slavery in both the United Kingdom and, later, the United States. His arguments against slavery were quoted in early antislavery material. Wilberforce, who met Adam Smith in 1787, quoted Smith often. Quaker abolitionist James Cropper quoted Smith’s ideas about slavery’s economic inefficiency. Additionally, Smith’s ideas about ethics and empathy, developed in the Theory of Moral Sentiments (where he describes the “levity, brutality, and baseness” of the slave traders), also came to significantly influence the rhetorical strategy of the abolitionist movement. Smith, of course, was not alone. A wide array of liberal thinkers made the case for the supremacy of the individual and against slavery.

These campaigns managed to achieve an extraordinary “collective change of heart,” historian Niall Ferguson has written, in the face of the organised and powerful beneficiaries of slavery. In 1807, Parliament abolished the slave trade across the British Empire, which came to cover hundreds of millions of people. But this was not all. The Royal Navy used its dominance of the sea to suppress the slave trade by foreigners, both seizing slave ships and coercing other countries such as Spain and Portugal into signing treaties committing to end their slave trade.

By 1860, the Royal Navy’s West Africa Squadron had seized approximately 1,600 ships involved in slavery and freed 150,000 Africans aboard those vessels. About 1,587 members of the squadron are estimated to have died from both disease and being killed in action. Freetown in Sierra Leone takes its name from its first settlers, returned slaves by Brits. According to Ferguson: “The freed slaves walked through a Freedom Arch bearing the inscription—now almost obscured by weeds: ‘Freed from slavery by British valor and philanthropy.’” In 1833, slavery was abolished across the British Empire. The British and Foreign Anti-Slavery Society, now known as Anti-Slavery International, was formed in 1839 to stamp out slavery across the globe. It is the world’s oldest human rights organization.

This took far too long. Slavery is, was, and continues to be (in its modern forms) totally repugnant. But what makes the British Empire unique is not its entanglement with the slave trade, which was true of nearly every empire, as Smith explains, but rather its moral crusade against the trade from the 19th century.

It is no coincidence that the birthplace of the industrial revolution is also the birthplace of the global antislavery movement. Slavery is the antitheses to market economies which depend on the voluntary exchange of labor.

Slavery has been a consistent feature of human history; the Enlightenment liberal and Christian thinkers contributed substantially to the case for its abolition. Adam Smith was one of those early thinkers. In 1764, an anonymous American published an anti-slavery pamphlet based on The Theory of Moral Sentiments. The pamphlet concludes on Smith:

How had he bless’d mankind, and rescu’d me!


Matthew Lesh is the Head of Research at the Adam Smith Institute. Follow him on Twitter @matthewlesh.

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