No Minister

Archive for the ‘General Politics’ Category

Full Court Press

with 6 comments

If you’ve ever watched American basketball you’ll be familiar with the term “Full Court Press”, which is where a team basically attacks the other team in every part of the court.

The tactic is usually done by marking up each individual opposition player in every part of the court – as opposed to clustering around their own basket while their opponents lazily drift towards them with ball (the usual) and/or targeting a couple of key players.

What is being done to Elon Musk and Twitter now by the Left is the type of online Full Court Press they specialise in:

Understand that as you read each of those near-identical messages that these “people” are not re-tweeting another’s message. These are, supposedly, their own thoughts expressed on Twitter about how it’s:

Kinda weird how @elonmusk gets to decide how like a half-billion people communicate. Way too much power for one erratic individual to wield, don’t you think?

You have actually seen this before, but in another context:

And then there’s the government who are being asked, by that ever fair and balanced MSM, if they’re worried about us being at “critical moment” where a consistent narrative must be maintained. Understand that this question is coming from a member of the fucking MSM, openly advocating for the silencing for everybody but themselves and other members of the Establishment™.

Unfortunately for all these assholes they’re not only dealing with the richest man in the world but somebody who clearly understands both the cultural and political moments he’s in, as he showed in May, 2022.

Including dealing with the assholes known as Apple.

That’s how they shut down the starting app of Parler thanks to their massive duopoly with Google. “Free market” supporters take note, and see also that Apple had no problems selling the Facebook and Twitter apps even as the former were used to organise the January 6 “Insurrection”, while the latter has been filled with Iranian, Russian, North Korean and Taliban propaganda since its inception. It is only when Musk allows conservatives to speak more freely on Twitter that suddenly there is a huge problem. The Burn Loot Murder and Antifa assholes used used both Twitter and Facebook to coordinate the destruction of American cities in 2020, but that also was fine with Apple. But a conservative speaking on Twitter is a threat to democracy itself.

Then there’s this.

Ok, so that’s just the Bee having their usual satirical fun. But as always with “Fake News That You Can Trust”, there’s a truth behind it.

Apple has restricted AirDrop file sharing, the very method the demonstrators have been using to communicate privately out of earshot of their totalitarian masters. Was this on advice from the communist regime or did Apple just figure out for themselves what was in their best interest to do? It wouldn’t have been hard.

I should add I’d been hugely impressed by their tech since first using it at varsity in the mid-1980s’, shunning it only due to the cost, but finally giving in around 2003, since when we’ve been largely an Apple household. Which makes this all the worse.

Can’t let that huge Chinese market revolt, or that prison camp called the FoxConn factory where most iPhones are made, go down the tube, right Apple? Apple have come a long way – I should say fallen a long way – from their famous TV Superbowl commercial in 1984.

Note also that there is no word yet from Google about their pulling the Twitter app from selling to their huge Android OS community.

Both of those companies promote TikTok and profit off it. And nobody seriously questions that TikTok is an actual danger to both national security and to the mental health of children. US government officials are literally saying that. It is Chinese spyware – and used by people at both the White House and Pentagon.

Did I say richest man in the world? Despite his wealth not comparing to the glittering prize of the Chinese market, it would seem that Elon knows which testicles to squeeze and how, by releasing information like this:

Apple threatened at least one developer with banishment from the company’s lucrative App Store if they didn’t remove all search engine returns regarding COVID-19 from their library application.

LBRY bills itself as “an open, free, and fair network for digital content,” designed to circumvent social media and government controls. But the company told Twitter owner and CEO Elon Musk on Monday that, “During Covid, Apple demanded our apps filter some search terms from being returned. If we did not filter the terms, our apps would not be allowed in the store.”

And this letter from Senator Josh Hawley(R) to Tim Cooke may also have helped produce the following result today.

I always crack up at Musk’s dry humour: “misunderstanding” indeed. He knew exactly what the pressure campaign of the Left was all about.

But the fight goes on.

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Written by Tom Hunter

December 1, 2022 at 3:59 pm

Disband the Supreme Court

with 8 comments

Time for the Supreme Court to go:

Supreme Court rules in favour of ‘Make It 16’ case to lower voting age

There was never any good reason to replace the Privy Council with this vanity project of Helen Clark and Margaret Wilson.

Unlike the US Supreme Court, which has a modicum of accountability in that the elected representatives of the people appoint who sits on that bench, our Supreme Court has no accountability, meaning it is very dangerous should the judges turn out to be power-hungry activists. (Yes, yes, I know that in the US the judges are power hungry activists too. And I don’t want us to copy their constitutional arrangements. But at least when you vote in a senator or president, you also effectively vote in the bench, meaning the voters ultimately decide to put in who they want).

Our highest court’s bench is clearly full of left-wing power hungry activists, telling us that not letting children vote in elections is against the bill of rights! If anything, 18 years is too young to vote – we should raise it to at least 21!!!!

It is up to Parliament to decide things like what the voting age should be. Not unelected, unaccountable elites from inner city Wellington.

In addition to this affront to democracy, this court also effectively overruled the Three Strikes legislation and made an extraordinary finding in the Peter Ellis appeal that Maori customs are now to be elevated alongside Common Law. As well-respected laywer Anthony Willy puts it:

In a democracy politicians come and go at the whim of the electorate ( in the case of the present lot the sooner the better). Judges do not. They are appointed for a fixed term and frequently sit beyond that expiry date. One of the judges in the Ellis case is five years beyond the fixed term. Once appointed it is for all practical purposes impossible to remove a judge from office. The trade-off for this unique job security is that Judges confine themselves to applying the law to the facts of the cases that come before them. It is for that reason that Judges used to be selected from those lawyers who had devoted their careers to the practice of the law in the courts and the day-to-day exercise of the common law. That is no longer the case.

https://www.nzcpr.com/the-peter-ellis-decision/

I do not like the direction that our elites are taking us, nor do I like the stealthiness and underhanded manner they are subverting our democracy.

Written by Major Star

November 21, 2022 at 11:25 am

The Total, Utter and Complete Backdown on Hate Speech Legislation

with 8 comments

I was certain that this Labour Government was going to foist Hate Speech laws on us. There were six specific proposals:

  1. Increase the number groups protected under the Human Rights Act, from the status quo protecting groups based on their “colour, race or ethnic or national origins” to also include “sex, gender (including gender identity), religious belief, disability or sexual orientation.”
  2. Introduce a new offence in the Crimes Act so that hatred is specifically a crime (in place of current laws which merely forbid intentionally inciting racial disharmony).
  3. Make the crime of being a hateful bigot punishable by three years imprisonment or a fine of up to $50,000.
  4. If the second proposal was enacted (the criminal offence), at the same time beef up the Human Rights Act so that complaints may be made about hatred under the Human Rights Act (grossly empowering the Human Rights Commission)
  5. Make it illegal to incite others to be hateful bigots.
  6. Add to the grounds of discrimination in the Human Rights Act to clarify that trans, gender diverse and intersex people are protected from discrimination.

It was a huge overreach and deeply unpopular with ordinary NZers. The Free Speech Union mounted a very successful campaign against it. It made criminals of conservative religious NZers, ironically including any Muslim in NZ who held to orthodox Muslim beliefs about gender and sexuality.

The government is completely backing down from all of these changes – don’t believe anything that says otherwise! The one minor change they are making is a very watered down version of the first proposal, to simply add religious belief as a protected group in the HRA.

This is a complete 180 degree U-turn. The poorly drafted proposals, which failed to properly define hatred and allowed for civil and criminal proceedings against an alarmingly broad definition of discrimination, would have been ruinous for social and religous cohesion in NZ. Conservative churches (and mosques and temples) would have suddenly been guilty of hatred and hate speech if they dared to preach what they have believed for literally thousands of years.

The new proposal specifically protects those churches (and mosques and temples) from the woke fascists who would have been leading the charge against them!!!! Tyrants such as Shaneel Lal, David Farrier (and the entire Stuff propaganda department…), the Marxist-Pagan cult, and Shaneel Lal (again) were licking their lips with the opportunity to criminalise hateful bigots like me.

The reaction from the fascist left is furious – how dare the government not just allow but actually protect religious groups to hold religious views!

The truth is, Faafoi was grossly incompetent when he let activist bureaucrats from the Ministry of Justice and the Human Rights Commission dream up such far-reaching and poorly thought-out proposals, which had severe third and fourth order effects on the rights of New Zealanders to hold and express orthodox views. Kiri Allan has cleaned this up admirably by not only ditching the proposals, but actually reversing them to specifically protect religious groups in NZ.

The fact the Human Rights Commission is saying that the new changes are “very disappointing” is an excellent indication to me that this is a good proposal!

True to form though, this isn’t the last of it. The government is tasking the Law Commission to undertake a review, opening up the possibility for another attempt in a year or two. Clearly the polling is telling them to hold off before the election…

Written by Major Star

November 20, 2022 at 1:43 pm

National wants a ‘Young Offender Military Academy’

with 21 comments

National wants to bring in a ‘Young Offender Military Academy’ in response to ferals and delinquents running amok.

National leader Christopher Luxon has announced a major crackdown on young offenders with a new policy including youth offender military-style camps and a serious offender category for those as young as 10…

National will establish a youth offender military academy that will be delivered by the New Zealand Defence Force and other community providers.

They would target young people aged 15 – 17 years old who could be ordered to attend by the courts for 12 months.

“The whole point is that these youth offender military academy’s are going to be a total circuit breaker. They are there to provide intense structured programs including schooling, mentoring, drug and alcohol treatment but in a very, very disciplined environment.”

https://www.1news.co.nz/2022/11/17/year-long-military-academies-for-young-offenders-proposed-by-national/

I have some questions about this:

  1. With what resources will the NZDF be expected to do this?
  2. Where will this be done? (Is the National Party aware of how dilapidated Waiouru Military Camp is, amongst all the other camps and bases?)
  3. Where will the ferals go after 12 months with the NZDF? What’s to stop them going straight back to where they came from?

I suspect there is some nostalgia about the Regular Force Cadet School, in operation until 1991. The RF Cadet School wasn’t for ferals or delinquents, but it was able to be a pathway taken before one became a feral. A good case in point is the comparison between Ron Mark and his brother Tui. Ron was lucky enough to be one of the about 120 or so teenagers accepted each year into ‘the club’, but alas Tui was not. Ron had a successful career in the NZ Army as a vehicle mechanic, then an officer in the Royal New Zealand and Electrical Engineers, before serving in the Oman forces and becoming an MP and cabinet minister. Tui joined a gang and led a life of crime and delinquency:

https://www.stuff.co.nz/national/politics/363725/Brother-to-brother-the-MP-and-the-gang-president

But what National are proposing is not RF cadet school. It is basically a military borstal for a year. I’m sceptical that it’ll be a successful circuit breaker for a teenager who has already embarked on a life of crime, gangs and drugs.

I’d also like to see some policy from National about how to rebuild the NZDF to do its core job before adding more tasks to the NZDF, such as parenting feral sh!theads.

UPDATE:

It’s a rehash of Sir Bill English’s policy from 2017 which was never implemented:

Speaking to Morning Report today, Mr English denied the new scheme would be a boot camp, calling it an “intensive wrap-around service, a junior military academy”.

“There is one group of 20 of these kids who have 800 offences, we’re not talking about wayward youth getting a short sharp shock.”

He said the teenagers had committed serious crimes, including rape, aggravated robbery and murder, but could not say if they would receive any weapons training from the army while in the programme.

“It’s going to be run by the army, it will include literacy, numeracy and a focus on health, a focus on activity and discipline and character.

“It’s about providing an alternative to prison, it’s not an employment scheme, it’s not an alternative to going to school, it’s an alternative to prison, or youth justice facilities. It’s 12 months, and it includes the wrap-round services that we do see working.”

Mr English said the National Party was taking the view that the culture of the army was the right one to help the young people.

https://www.rnz.co.nz/news/political/337115/military-camp-scheme-has-never-been-tried-before-pm

If National want to convince people (especially me!) that this is a good policy, they’ll need to counter Sir Peter Gluckman’s conclusion in 2018 that “boot camps do not work” and that the NZDF will have sufficient resources for this in addition to their core roles.

Written by Major Star

November 17, 2022 at 6:02 pm

A five-minute conversation with the average voter….

with 2 comments

… is the best argument against democracy.”

So, it is often claimed, did Winston Churchill pronounce upon our system of government – his system of government – as one of his famous quotes.

Except it’s not.

As the International Churchill Society points out on their wonderful website with Red Herrings: Famous Quotes Churchill Never Said:

No attribution. Though he sometimes despaired of democracy’s slowness to act for its preservation, Churchill had a more positive attitude towards the average voter.

I often find myself in need of such positive attitudes when looking at the state of politics in this country and across the Western world, particularly in the wake of the results of the US Mid-term elections.

No, I do not say that because the GOP did less well than they should have, or because they lost some key races. I’m not a doppelgänger for the shrieking hysterics of the likes of “Bomber” Bradbury over at The Daily Blog:

Unlike any midterm before it, it suggests that democracy actually won…

Is that so? The Mid-Terms of 2006 and 2018 where the Democrats kicked ass and took names were not actually democracy winning then? Good to know that from “Bomber”, even if his anarcho-communist brain is obviously also dismissing the Mid-Terms of 1994, 2010 and 2014 as democracy losing because the GOP won big.

🙄🙄🙄🙄🙄🙄🙄🙄🙄🙄

And my response is also not the mirror-image of the more measured, calmer-sounding extremism of his TDB stable mate Paul Buchanan, who in this pre-election podcast had an “analysis” (and I use that term only in its broadest possible meaning) of the GOP that seemed little more than channeling the slogan of Orwell’s pigs: “Four legs good, two legs bad“. Seriously, if you can groan your way through it, you should listen as he simply repeats every single Democrat Party talking point on every single issue (prodded gleefully along by the equally unbalanced “journalist” Selwyn Manning) – right down to the claims of the “cruel attacks” on the brain-damaged candidate Fetterman, which were nothing more than the usual Democrat efforts at shutting up their opponents.

🙄🙄🙄🙄🙄🙄🙄🙄🙄🙄

No, I say that I need to maintain a positive attitude toward democracy because of the incredible desire of Democrat voters in Democrat states and cities to continue to vote for Democrats who have hurt them badly. I’m used to this in Chicago and California, but I thought that at least other Democrat parts of the nation – especially the sober citizens of the MidWest – would be better.

Yet the governors of Minnesota and Michigan (among others) were sent back into government even as their own voters registered unhappiness about the terrible impacts on the economic, educational, and social aspects of their states arising from their fanatical application of lockdowns, masks and vaccines – as well as poor performance on things like crime.

It’s not as if they even tried booting these terrible people out in Democratic primaries so they could get another Democrat to vote for in the General Election. Even from the POV of party tribalism I could have understood that. You love the Party, its policies and principles, but hate the politicians.

But these voters actually returned to power the same people who had hurt them and which they complained about hurting them. Unlike NZ in 2020 these Lefties could not even claim the results had been a success, not with tens of thousands dead. So WTF is that? BDSM?

Aside from the Mid-West, the best example actually comes from New York and is more concerned with crime than Chinese Lung Rot, especially since the architect of all those deaths, Andrew Cuomo, had been booted by his own party months ago (for sexual harassment, since that’s worse than getting people killed) and replaced by his Deputy, Kathy “why do you keep talking about crime?” Hochul.

It’s been on her watch that crime has become one of the main issues of NYC and New York state. It was suspected even by Democrats that it might cause her to lose, so much so that they were angry at the Democrat NYC mayor, Adams, who said that Hochul needed to call a special session and roll back new, lax bail laws. But she won anyway. And now we get this:

So, now that Hochul has been elected, New Yorkers are begging her to get crime under control — even those who voted for her.

“Now that Hochul has won, her priority needs to be do something about the crime in the subway,” one voter told The New York Post.

“I’m happy Hochul won, but I don’t want her to think winning gives her a pass to keep things status quo,” said the voter. “She’s got her work cut out for her. None of us who rides the trains feel safe.”

AYFKM?

AYFKM?

Then.
Why.
Did.
You.
Vote.
For.
Her?

I guess it could be worse. I could be her opponent, Lee Zeldin, who ran a good race and got closer than any GOPer has in two decades in New York, sitting there wondering the same thing.

============================================

Looking back at that Churchill link I must say that I wish he had said the following:

“Well, dinner would have been splendid if the wine had been as cold as the soup, the beef as rare as the service, the brandy as old as the fish, and the maid as willing as the Duchess.”

But apparently Churchill never made smutty jokes.

Written by Tom Hunter

November 12, 2022 at 3:12 pm

Thoughts on voting in general

with 5 comments

Good old Silent Cal, still one of the best and most underrated Presidents in US history. Many people have speculated as to how things would have turned out in the wake of the 1929 stock market crash had he still been in charge rather than his idiot VP, Herbert Hoover.

He and the Republicans brilliantly handled a similar crash in 1920, setting the scene for the Roaring Twenties (The Depression You Never Heard of)

The 1929 crash was not the biggest economic crash in history.  It was not even the biggest crash in that decade. In 1920 the stock market fell further and faster than in 1929—and the collapse in the monetary base during 1920–1921 was the largest in U.S. history—yet within eighteen months recovery was complete.

In 1928, despite having been President for most of two terms – having taken over from President Harding when he died – he could have run for office again, and there’s no doubt he would have won in a landslide. But he turned down the opportunity and Hoover got the brass ring instead.

Perhaps I’m being unfair to Hoover, who was quite an intelligent, educated (engineer) and accomplished chap. But his ideas for government, especially in a crisis like 1929, were awful. Coolidge once said of him:

“for six years that man has given me unsolicited advice—all of it bad.”

And yet he chose to allow “that man” to take over from him and implement ‘bad advice’. No wonder Hoover pushed the highest income tax rate through the roof in response to the Great Depression:

The Revenue Act of 1932 (June 6, 1932, ch. 209, 47 Stat. 169) raised United States tax rates across the board, with the rate on top incomes rising from 25 percent to 63 percent. The estate tax was doubled and corporate taxes were raised by almost 15 percent.

Something to remember the next time a Lefty student of US history talks to you about the laissez-faire of Hoover.

The County Election (George Caleb Bingham)

We’ve certainly come a long way from that scene of elections in Missouri, which democracy Bingham believed in sufficiently to serve in the Union cause during the Civil War, despite being a Missouri native and politician.

Instead we have this, from a thoughtful piece on the 2022 US Mid-term elections:

This night is discouraging, but not because Republicans didn’t have as good a night as expected. It’s really because it seems that no level of economic turmoil or inflation or moral depravity is enough to sway people to change their minds. America is fractured now; divided and probably irreparably so. The great sort will continue.

And tomorrow, and in weeks to come, when Joe Biden stops propping up the economy by dumping the U.S. oil reserves to keep energy prices down, all heck is going to break loose. I was hoping that a GOP sweep would bring sanity back, but there will be no GOP sweep and the Republicans can shrug and say they can’t do anything to stop the onslaught that is about to happen.

Suffering is coming. Americans voted for what they’re about to get.

Perhaps that’s just how it has to be. During the Civil War even Lincoln himself, in trying to figure out the terrible conflict, concluded that it was God’s punishment for slavery.

But there’s also this aspect of modern America, best captured by the late Boston University professor emeritus Angelo Codevilla in his 2010 bestseller, The Ruling Class: How They Corrupted America, the nation has become divided between a “Ruling Class” whose “chief pretension is its intellectual superiority” and who thinks that most Americans – which Codevilla called the “Country Class”“are unfit to run their own lives.” Moreover, most Americans have noticed that “the Ruling Class has lost every war it has fought, run up an unplayable national debt, and generally made life worse.”

And in noting that I do wonder, as I look at that previous comment about what it will take to break Democrat voters away from their own punishment, whether the same thing is happening to the USA that has happened to France (Choose your philosophers carefully), courtesy of a ruling class whose “chief pretension is its intellectual superiority”:

Whatever became of France? Once the most beautiful, brilliant and civilised country on earth, it is now caught in a seemingly irreversible spiral of decline….

“Older French generations are just beginning to realise how bewitched they were by the intellectual gurus who seized power in the chaotic aftermath of 1968.

“Perhaps the cleverest, most cynical and most pernicious of these Pied Pipers was Michel Foucault. His books and lectures undermined the moral foundations of French history, society and intellectual life. Only now, decades after his death in 1984, is France gradually coming to terms with the fact that it allowed its collective mind to be befuddled by an evil genius …

“[Prize-winning French novelist] Ernaux’s works are saturated in the solipsism and nihilism of [this] nation in decline.”A subtler French writer than Ernaux, Michel Houellebecq, published a far more prophetic novel earlier this year. Anéantir (‘Destroy’) is set in 2027, as Macron leaves office. His vision of France is grim: stricken by poverty and unemployment, it is a rapidly ageing society. Hence his focus is on fatal illness. Unlike Ernaux, whose depiction of her mother’s dementia is shockingly cold-blooded, Houellebecq’s writing about the end of life is suffused with humanity.

“Yet even Houellebecq sees no sunlit uplands for France. For him, as for most of his compatriots, Macron cannot come clean soon enough about the failures of leadership that have reduced France to such relentless economic, social, political and educational decline. The pessimism of the country’s greatest writer speaks volumes about a nation gripped by the politics of cultural despair.

“Houellebecq’s last testament is his valedictory elegy for a France that has lost its raison d’être. Under Macron, the French have reversed Descartes’ Cogito, ergo sum. Now it should read: ‘I no longer think, therefore I no longer am’.”

One difference is that for all their nice words about the Revolution, the Declaration of Independence, the Founding Fathers, the Constitution and the Bill of Rights, Americans have always been less in thrall to intellectuals and more pragmatic about their choices and paths.

In short, America still has a chance at surviving as a lawful, prosperous, healthy society – whereas I think France is lost:

In L’archipel français (“The French Archipelago”), published in 2019, sociologist Jérome Fourquet writes of a French “collective nervous breakdown” and the “crumbling” of French society. He notes that the religious and historical moorings of the French people are disappearing: churches are empty, important moments in the country’s history are no longer taught in schools

[In 2018], France had 9.3 million people living under the poverty line (on an income not more than 1,063 euros per month), and surveys showed that hundreds of thousands of families were suffering from malnutrition…The French economy suffered as a result of the lockdown. The number of poor people increased sharply and now stands at 12 million (18.46% of the population). 

Those who might have thought that the beheading of Samuel Paty would lead the authorities to make drastic decisions were proven wrong. Today, teachers throughout France report the relentless threats they receive. In the complaints they file, many say that Muslim students threaten “doing a Samuel Paty” to them. Jewish teachers face anti-Semitic threats and insults.

Essayist Céline Pina writes that the murder of little Lola, the reactions of the murderer after the crime and the government’s attempt to impose silence about the event, mark another step in France’s slide towards collapse, barbarity and chaos.

Far more detail at the link: all of it terrible.

Written by Tom Hunter

November 10, 2022 at 1:45 pm

NO! I want justice, apologies – and a measure of revenge

with 19 comments

“We’ve been patient, but our patience is wearing thin. And your refusal has cost all of us.” 

Source:

What America needs is not pandemic amnesty. It needs accountability. The politicians and leaders who employed the measures that resulted in these tragedies need to face consequences, full stop. We can’t get to forgiveness if there is no accountability and repentance.

But folks like Oster know this is not going to happen. The people she supported in their efforts to use the pandemic to get the state more involved in our lives will never meet justice. Indeed, the only evil people in this equation are people who expressed opinions with which she disagreed. In the end, her piece was nothing more than a pretty way of saying: “It happened. Get over it.”

I also want some solid rules put in place via legislation that will mean our society will never, ever again pull this shit. But that’s probably being too hopeful since the future can only be mildly influenced and in any case I thought we already did have barriers in place via our now-laughable Bill of Rights.

No, I think some measure of punishment in the form of a loss of power and job prospects for the likes of Baker, Wiles and the other “scientific” fanatics who pushed the lockdowns, the masks and the vaccine mandates, will likely have a more powerful effect than rules, for it will instruct future little fanatics that there will be a price to pay personally if they go too far in their fanaticism. That’s what I mean by “revenge”.

Emily Oster is a Brown University economist and supposed “parenting guru”, and she has just written an article in The Atlantic which basically says that all these things were just honest mistakes and anybody else would have messed up. Of course you can see why that’s so appealing to our political class, which went along with almost 100%, especially in NZ, Britain and much of the West. The only real Western pushback came in the USA, and those politicians are now starting to reap the rewards. Regrettably there are others also reaping the rewards who do not deserve to do so.

From what I can see on screenshots of her Twitter timeline she spent the first months of the pandemic being absolutely terrified of the virus until school closures began to hurt her own kids. She then started to come on as a kind of “lockdown moderate”, opposing the worst of the hysteria but also constantly validating the underlying assumptions that made them possible – probably so she could retain relationships with her friends and colleagues.

April 2020, with nothing else to do, my family took an enormous number of hikes. We all wore cloth masks that I had made myself. We had a family hand signal, which the person in the front would use if someone was approaching on the trail and we needed to put on our masks.  Once, when another child got too close to my then-4-year-old son on a bridge, he yelled at her “SOCIAL DISTANCING!”

These precautions were totally misguided. In April 2020, no one got the coronavirus from passing someone else hiking. Outdoor transmission was vanishingly rare. Our cloth masks made out of old bandanas wouldn’t have done anything, anyway. But the thing is: We didn’t know.

Fucking bullshit! We did know.

It’s not like respiratory viruses, the Flu, were unknown. They’d been studied for more than a hundred years and the lessons and instructions on how to deal with them had been written into the Public Healthcare plans of dozens of Western countries, including our own MOH Influenza Pandemic Plan (2nd edition, 2017), and they did not include the concepts of Lockdowns, mask mandates or vaccine mandates.

Rishi Sunak has said the government gave too much power to scientists during Covid lockdowns – and was not honest about the potential downsides.

The Tory leadership contender and former chancellor told the Spectator ministers were banned from talking about the “trade-offs” involved… he said the negative impacts of lockdowns on society were “never part” of internal discussions, adding meetings were “literally me around that table, just fighting”. Ministers were also told not to discuss the potential downsides in interviews, he added.

“The script was not to ever acknowledge them. The script was: ‘Oh there’s no trade-off, because doing this for our health is good for the economy.'”

Rishi Sunak – British Prime Minister

Yeah Rishi. We noticed. I guess nobody in the Tory cabinet saw that graphic above! I was not impressed to see in that Spectator article that former No 10 aide Dominic Cummings said that Sunak was talking “dangerous rubbish” and that the interview “reads like a man whose epicly bad campaign has melted his brain and he’s about to quit politics”.

Obviously Mr Cummings still thinks that such intimidation and name-calling works. It certainly did for the lockdown-mask fanatics for about two years. What assholes they are.

“We” – or at least a fair number of people, including some world-leading epidemiologists (world-leading until Fauci and company went on a sliming mission against them) – knew all this from the start in early 2020. We were not ignorant and we were not hysterical in responding to the Chinese Lung Rot Pandemic. But all that calm, measured, rationality got buried by the propaganda cry of “Let it rip” (a phrase it turns out that Fauci and company crafted in emails behind the scenes to denigrate his far more expert scientific opponents).

Stefan Baral, an epidemiologist at Johns Hopkins with 350 publications to his name, submitted a critique of lockdowns to more than ten journals and finally gave up—“the first time in my career that I could not get a piece placed anywhere,”

See also:

The Covid-19 Royal Commission

Lockdowns don’t work. What does? (April, 2020)

Visible Death vs. Invisible Death

Lockdowns: a nightmare of imagination

Everything in the Lockdown, nothing outside the Lockdown, nothing against the Lockdown.

New Zealand is more frightened than Britain

Failed solutions, Moral Cruelty and Advertising

“The dark night of…

Double Standards & Changing Narratives

The British Lockdown (May 2020 where opposing opinions were already quashed)


Written by Tom Hunter

November 1, 2022 at 3:37 pm

Even the Penguins

with 3 comments

Written by Whiskey&Pie

October 27, 2022 at 1:06 pm

The Rover

leave a comment »

Our cherry trees are in bloom now too, so this photo seemed appropriate.

But now, back to the world of astounding facts.

Will government be able to help with this? Let I.Rat answer that question.

What will help?

Of course it depends on which capitalist and which socialist we’re talking about, amirite?

Yeah, maybe not him. For the socialist side, the following is courtesy of Ye Olde Lefty Chris Trotter.

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Written by Tom Hunter

October 26, 2022 at 6:37 am

A primer on US Government

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With the US Mid-term elections less than a month away (November 8) and with voting already underway in some places, it’s worth looking at what the US Government actually is and why these elections are just as important as the Presidential elections, to which far more attention is paid.

The latter is understandable. Given the military power a US President potentially wields as Commander in Chief and the media coverage of a President, people around the world assume that when they look at the President they’re seeing the US government in action.

But the President is just one component of that government – a very important component of course, but limited in power in some respects. So here’s a concise view of that government:

  • The President: Head of State & Government, Commander in Chief, Head of Govt. Departments
  • Congress – House (Legislation – detailed) and Senate (Legislation-high level, appointing Federal judges, Foreign Treaties)
  • Supreme Court (Judicial review to ensure the President, Congress and States are acting within the Constitution)
  • The States (Miniature USA’s; the primary source of day-to-day government)

Keep this in mind during the elections because the political control of each, not just one, is very important.

THE PRESIDENT:

A four year term, limited to two terms. FPP elections by voters in States then enable “Electors” from the Electoral College to select the President. The number of Electors for each State equals the number of House Reps they have, plus the two Senators each State has, e.g. California has 53 Reps so 55 EC votes. The EC forces Presidential candidates to contest more widely than just the highest population centres, thus hopefully widening representation. President’s can veto Congressional legislation but their veto can be over-ridden if the numbers are present in Congress.

  • Commander in Chief:
    The Founders wanted this because you can’t run a war by committee, but they never could have seen the CiC controlling such a vast, permanent military, least of all thousands of nuclear weapons.
  • Foreign Policy leader:
    There was a time when this didn’t matter much, and when it became more important in the 20th century the US Senate was quite aggressive in getting involved. It’s why President Woodrow Wilson’s League of Nations effort died in the USA. It’s also why FDR could not make much progress in getting the US involved in WWII, against the bi-partisan Isolationists in the Senate, until Pearl Harbour made it a moot point. In the 3rd volume of his biography of LBJ, Master of The Senate, Robert Caro makes a convincing argument that the Pearl Harbour attack caused the Senate to permanently retreat from trying to lead foreign policy initiatives, to the detriment of America in the Korean and Vietnam Wars, plus the Cold War in general. Sure, they’ll argue inside the Senate against Presidential ideas and efforts on this front, but you never see a group of Senators leading the charge.
  • Domestic Bureaucracy:
    The Founders absolutely never saw this coming. Domestically the Presidency was designed to be very weak because of the fear of a new King or Emperor or outright dictator rising to power. But through the 20th century the Congress has created one huge bureaucracy after another and they all report to the President. Even though the President can’t make or change laws, there is now enormous scope to use American Sir Humphrey’s to push the envelope out with rules and regulations that effectively act like legislation. Not to mention the simple directives to just not enforce the law – or perhaps enforce it in detail – to push party political and ideological positions. Bush’s “War on Terror”, Obama and Biden on Immigration and now Biden with his Department of Justice injustices.

THE CONGRESS:

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Written by Tom Hunter

October 17, 2022 at 6:00 am