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Inflation is likely to become the number one priority over the next year, judging by the price rises to date on various consumer items and the fact that there’s nothing on the horizon that would stop it. Oil looks to be going higher, supply chains are still in bad shape, and governments continue to pump money into their economies to compensate for lockdowns.

It also looks like it will be a global event rather than just a few nations, since almost every nation has followed the same path and is having the same problems.

On top of everything else, the MSM has begun to take notice by interviewing not just the usual economic “experts” but ordinary people, which is what CNN did the other day:

“To demonstrate the ‘squeeze’ of inflation and supply chain issues on everyday Americans, CNN’s ‘New Day’ featured the Stotlers, a Texas couple looking after nine children – two of whom are their biological kids, while they’ve adopted six more and have one foster child. Krista Stotler said she started seeing prices rising this summer and it was costing them an extra $100 a week on groceries….  ‘A gallon of milk was $1.99. Now it’s $2.79. When you buy 12 gallons a week times four weeks, that’s a lot of money,’

For their troubles of appearing in a CNN interview the Stotler’s got these reactions from “Liberal” voices, including any number of journalists and Democrat activists (but I repeat myself). Here are just two but there’s plenty more where they came from:

That last one shows the usual situation of people reading a headline and not the whole article. As you can see above, only 2 of the children are the natural offspring of the parents. The Stotlers have opened their home to 7 more children. And he’s sneering at them!

On top of that the mockery is based on the gut reaction that 12 gallons of milk a week is absurd. But with 11 people in the family, it’s an average of two and a half cups of milk per person per day.

It shows how out of touch these critics are, but that won’t stop them being invited by their MSM mates onto talk shows to explain away recent Democrat election losses and how to get in touch with The People again.

It also shows that they’re assholes, which brings me to this article about Alec Baldwin’s recent shooting and killing of an innocent woman:

Alec Baldwin got to play his dream role last week, and unfortunately for an innocent woman, it was a method-acting version of Ted Kennedy. Now, you note that I am mocking a guy whose probable gross negligence killed a lady and maimed a man, and this raises an important question – do we really want to live in a world where our reaction to a tragedy caused by an enemy is not sorrow and compassion but mockery?

The article goes on to explore the pros and cons of being enough of an asshole to mock Baldwin in this situation:

In the world I would want to live in, we would all be at Option A, whispering a silent prayer for the hurting – and I did. But this is not the world we live in, and none of us are under any moral obligation to pretend we do.

Alec Baldwin is a bad person, but more than that, he is a bad person who hates us – with a mortality rate thanks to his hypocrisy. And now he is vulnerable, and the rules say he is fair game – his rules.

Not only that but this is not “punching down”, which Baldwin has done on Twitter countless times to ordinary people, in keeping with his Lefty peers as seen above with the Stotler family. By contrast, ripping Baldwin is punching up across the shields of his fame, wealth and the moral superiority that comes with the high levels of self regard his class of people have.

The conclusion is that it’s down to individual choice but that the writer is not going to condemn you if mockery is the route you take.

Think of it as the Cold War. Option B is mutually assured destruction – if you launch social media cruelty at our misfortune, you will pay in spades, so don’t. Option A is unilateral disarmament. Nice people on our side want us to disarm to make us better people; our enemies want us to disarm to make us better targets.

Those are the rules we’re playing by today. I didn’t make the rules. I don’t like them. I’m even willing to return to the old ones, once enough pain has been inflicted to teach the necessary lesson about changing the rules. But I am not willing to play by a different set of rules that limits me at the expense of my opponents.

Written by Tom Hunter

November 16, 2021 at 10:04 am

Your Brain on Murder – and Covid-19

A year ago, during the insanity of the BLM/Antifa riots across US cities that killed dozens, caused billions of dollars of property damage and screwed up a number of Central Business Districts (CBD’s), I came across a statistic that should not have surprised me but did.

The number of unarmed Black men that the public think are killed by the police in the USA in 2019, broken down by political ideology.

Putting that into an even simpler form:

Very Liberal respondents:

  • 14.29% said ‘about 10,000’
  • 31.43% said ‘about 1,000.’

Liberal respondents:

  • 6.67% saying ‘about 10,000’
  • 26.67% saying ‘about 1,000.’

According to the database at Mapping Police Violence, the number was actually 27 in 2019.

As you can see from the above chart, it’s the Moderate, Conservative and Very Conservative thinkers who have a much better grip on reality in this case.

Is it any wonder that these “Liberal” and “Very Liberal” people were all in on the BLM violence in 2020. I suppose you can at least say they’re genuine in their rage.

But then I ran across the same gap between reality and human minds on another issue, Covid-19, this one from a Gallup poll and splitting only by US political affiliation (Democrat, Independent, Republican):

Again making it even simpler, the percentages of those groups who think that the unvaccinated have a 50% chance of being hospitalized because of COVID:

  • 41% of Democrats believe that
  • 26% of Independents believe that
  • 22% of Republicans believe that.

The correct answer: Fewer than 1% of unvaccinated people infected with COVID will have to go to the hospital.

The good news, sort of, is that at least all three groups had a near majority thinking that the chances of vaccinated people being hospitalised is less than one percent, which is the correct answer for the USA:

The hospitalization rate for both vaccinated and unvaccinated COVID patients is under 1%:

  • The hospitalization rate for vaccinated COVID patients is 0.01%, or 1 out of every 10,914 patients
  • The hospitalization rate for unvaccinated COVID patients is 0.89%, or 1 out of 112 patients.

While it’s easy to be snide about the political and ideological mindsets that lead to such conclusions, if we like to think that most people, maybe more than 50%, are intelligent and rational enough to accept factual data – and god help me I want so much to believe that – then the fault for these massive differences from reality must lie with our MSM, Social Media and governments, who have such great influence in telling people what’s going on.

Written by Tom Hunter

November 7, 2021 at 6:46 pm

Social Media Topsy Turvy

I awoke this morning to news from Beloved Wife that she could not even access Facebook let alone get to the places she visits.

At first I thought it was just the usual FaceTwit shadow-banning or worse, but a quick check on Ye Olde Internet revealed that Facebook was actually down and out in the worst such failure they’ve had since 2008 (when they only had 80 million people in their walled garden).

My heart skipped a beat. Perhaps Putin’s outsourced cyber-crime units had finally struck a blow for freedom. As the Babylon Bee put it:

Sadly this did not turn out to be the case.

Written by Tom Hunter

October 5, 2021 at 6:58 pm

Politics as Religion

As religion, at least traditional Christianity, declines across the Western nations, other beliefs seem to be filling the resulting vacuum.

Strangely enough it’s not Atheism, which continues to amount to perhaps 2-3% of the population. It would be fair to say that the space is being filled with Agnostics, people who don’t specifically say they don’t believe in a god or gods, but who merely say that they don’t practice any religion.

More specifically perhaps it’s people who just don’t bother to think about religion and god much from any POV: it’s just not part of their life.

However, there do seem to be just as many “spiritual” believers around as ever, people who believe in, have faith in, something beyond themselves, something not always corporeal. For example I’m always surprised at how many crystal worshippers I encounter: I thought it was a hippie thing that died out with the 1970’s. Imbuing nature with spirituality seems to be a thing as well. Attend any Tangi in this country and you’ll soon learn how spiritual Maori are.

Unfortunately it seems that politics is one of those growing religions, as outlined in this clever essay published on substack, Fanatics:

It’s not hard to see why wokeness is so frequently compared to a religion. The metaphors are everywhere: the washing of feet, the prostrations, the proclamations of faith, the sacraments, the martyrs, the confessions, the heretics, the hallowed ground, the Original Sin, the evangelism. Last summer’s protests for racial justice often had the look of a religious movement. Many of its practitioners saw it explicitly in those terms.

The article has links for each of those specific examples if you want to check. There are broader comparisons that work just as well and are more important:

If religion gives meaning to the lives of the faithful, there are a lot more Americans now who lack that meaning than there used to be, and they’re concentrated on the left side of the political spectrum. It’s not difficult to imagine these people seeking the kind of meaning that religion would otherwise have provided them  — a sense of belonging to a larger community; a feeling of collective purpose; an affiliation with a temporal reality that transcends the duration of a single human lifespan — in other things. In their politics, for example.

Actually there’s a specific religion the author has in mind; good old American Calvinism, whose 18th and 19th century aspects he notes before delving into today:

All of these tendencies fit as comfortably into American left-wing social justice culture as they did in right-wing Christian evangelical culture in the 1990s. Liberal Twitter in 2021 is one big digital Calvinist village, everyone trying to out-virtue-signal one another to prove their ever-tenuous membership in an amorphous club of the morally elite, picking over everyone else’s tweets for signs of political heresy, and calling them out to the mob in a desperate attempt to deflect scrutiny from themselves. The same political culture prevails on college campuses, media outlets, and the non-profit industrial complex. Increasingly, it is becoming the norm in Congress.

It does seem awfully familiar, especially when explicit examples of modern political behaviour are seen in Social Media, but:

The problem is that politics is, in important ways, the very antithesis of religion, and in a democratic society, the more politics takes on the shape of faith, the more intractable and dysfunctional it becomes. That’s because politics, when put to its proper use, is the search for what disparate groups share in common, and the bargaining over their differences. Religion is practically its inverse; at its root, it’s tribal. And so as our politics have taken on the character of religion, they have become tribal, too.

He goes on to specifically look at the tribal/religious aspects of Australia’s Aboriginals but also how blending this with politics can only end badly. It’s a lengthy article but worth your time to read.

He’s also not the only one saying this, but unfortunately the trend is speeding up rather than slowing down. Most religious arguments have ended in wars sooner or later, only after which did things settle down in new patterns until the next great uprising. Perhaps that’s the fate of the West again?

Written by Tom Hunter

June 26, 2021 at 9:23 am

What journalists don’t know

An interesting article on the topic of how increasingly disconnected journalists are from the societies they live in and report on.

It’s from a US perspective but I think the same thing applies in NZ. Sure, there are journalists for Farmers Weekly and the like, but the dominant faces and voices are concentrated in Auckland and Wellington.

This is Charles Cook in National Review; Have Journalists Ever Met the People They Write About?

This isn’t a conservative-vs.-progressive thing. It’s not a Republican-vs.-Democrat thing. It’s not a coastal-elite-vs.-flyover-country thing. It’s not even a Trump thing. It’s a journalists-vs.-normal-people thing. Outside of the narcissistic and incestuous Thunderdome that houses the American media, it remains the case that people simply do not think in the way that the Beltway-media class believes they do.

They are not traumatized by the daily news. They do not make key life decisions based upon the behavior of the president, nor wait for him to leave office before deciding that they are so disturbed that they no longer wish to work. They are not fixated upon the latest congressional MacGuffin or the implications of a given riot or the occasional mistakes of the police. And when they are looking to enjoy a good “cultural drama,” they do not look for it in the same places as the editors of the Washington Post do.

Only journalists and politicians do that. Why? Because they’re freaks. I mean that quite seriously, and I happily include myself in the description.

Cough … freaks … cough. Yes, well the difference is that freaks like moi don’t have a platform reaching vast numbers of people, and I’m well aware of where I sit in society:

People who argue about the national news every day are straight-up oddities — doubly so when they do it from New York or Washington, D.C.; triply so if they do it in pursuit of a comprehensible political ideology; and quadruply so if they do it using the digital funhouse we call Twitter. Don’t mistake me: There’s nothing wrong per se with being a weirdo. It’s a free country.

But there is a lot wrong with being a weirdo who is totally unaware that he is a weirdo. And there’s even more wrong with being a weirdo who spends his days projecting his own interests, obsessions, anxieties, pathologies, and ideologies onto an unwitting and normal population that is nothing at all like him, while claiming that he is giving a voice to that same unwitting and normal population. Increasingly, I see it accepted that “Twitter isn’t real life.” Well, journalism isn’t, either, I’m afraid.

It reminds me much of Englishmen Clive Crook, who wrote a very interesting article in 2015 analysing the rise of Trump by contrasting the area he lived and worked in – Washington D.C – with the area he was going to retire in, West Virginia, Donald Trump, Class Warrior:

I’m a British immigrant, and grew up in a northern English working-class town. Taking my regional accent to Oxford University and then the British civil service, I learned a certain amount about my own class consciousness and other people’s snobbery. But in London or Oxford from the 1970s onwards I never witnessed the naked disdain for the working class that much of America’s metropolitan elite finds permissible in 2016.

That’s a hell of statement coming from a product of the English class system. And the US MSM are right in with those attitudes. Back to Cook’s article:

Once again, I must ask: Has the average member of the press corps ever actually met anyone in America?

Written by Tom Hunter

June 25, 2021 at 1:36 pm

Never go full Twitter

A couple of weeks ago I was rather saddened to learn that one of my co-bloggers had fallen into the world of Twitter during the Great Wuhan Lung Rot pandemic.

I’ve never used Twitter and never will. From what I’ve seen it reinforces the worst aspects of human communication. The restricted text space should encourage people to be concise but seems to lead to poorly thought out, stupid comments that blow up in their face because they lack context and nuance. That is compounded by its addictive quality that pushes people into hammering out Tweet after Tweet when time off for reflective thought would be a better response. The cherry on top is that it enables one of the worst aspects of humanity – abusive pack behaviour.

I’ve lost track of the number of activists, journalists and ordinary people who have found themselves having to delete Tweets or even their entire account because of something stupid they said. The most recent example was one Richard Taite, founder of a Biden PAC (Political Action Committee) who responded to an incident where a Chicago man and his wife were dragged out of their car in a Black neighbourhood and shot.

The man was Gyovanny Arzuaga and he died. His wife, Yasmin Perez is still in critical condition. They were with their two kids, aged one and three, and were celebrating in the annual Puerto Rican Day Parade that’s been a feature of the city for decades. The flag sticking out of their car was, naturally enough, a Puerto Rican flag. How the hell anybody could mistake it for the old Confederate flag I don’t know, but he makes it quite clear that he’s cool with murder as long as the victims deserved it. Yet again, Twitter enabled the worst, not the best, of a human being. Mr Taite’s Twitter account has gone dark.

Twitter is a cesspool.

Recently a US survey was done that might explain some of this: it should certainly be shown to any members of PR or HR sections of public departments, ministries, NGO’s, corporations and any group with a public face that thinks it needs to do something or change something because a meme is “trending” on Twitter.

It’s not really a surprise. In the wake of the British Labour’s disasterous 2020 general election result one of the criticisms made of Labour activists was that they were so buried in Twitter that they thought it reflected the general population. Then there’s the growing censorship of the platform.

Written by Tom Hunter

June 25, 2021 at 8:55 am

What is censorship?

With the rise of Social Media websites that have created vast public spaces for discussion this question has been arising more frequently that it has in the past when censorship simply meant a government preventing you from speaking.

At present, because the likes of FaceTwit have banished President Trump from their spaces along with other Right Wing voices, the Lefty luvvies assume that Zuckerberg and company are on their side, so are more than happy to play the whole “Private Sector rights” back on to the Right – baking celebratory gay wedding cakes etc. In this they’re still being joined by the NeverTrump fanatics and the Libertarians.

You would think that the inconsistencies of the bans, with the likes of Iranian and CCP voices being allowed to remain while they punch out their propaganda, would cause the Left to think more deeply about this, but at present partisanship rules in the USA and as long as OrangeManBad is banned it’s all good.

Even the Socialist Workers Party had their access restored so they were probably quite happy to drop the subject.

I covered a fair bit of this double standard bullshit on a previous post, The Purge, back in February, including this quote aimed at the hard-line, private-sector-rulz Right Wing:

To be frank, anyone still defending big tech is part of the problem. You are going to “muh private company” yourself until every semblance of freedom is lost on these monopolistic “public squares.” And while some may be naive enough to think the ban monster isn’t coming for them, the next four years are going to get worse. Twitter, Facebook, etc. have no fear anymore. Trump is gone. The GOP lost the Senate and no longer control the committees. It’s a free for all, and everyone except those who are in hock with social media monetarily (i.e. The Dispatch crew) are vulnerable.

On that last, you should also refer to the counter-argument about such “private” spaces in the post, Answers to Bad Anti-Free Speech Arguments.

Of course there are some governments that, as Tatinia McGrath spotted, FaceTwit are comfortable with, given that they slobber at the prospect of hundreds of millions of new customers.

But now the government of Nigeria has gone after Twitter.

This follows on from the government of Uganda doing the same thing to Facebook and Twitter back in January (Not Literary Folk), fearing that they might also choose political sides in their upcoming election as they had in the USA. The FaceTwit response then was to reveal that they have no idea what irony is.

“Access to information and freedom of expression, including the public conversation on Twitter, is never more important than during democratic processes, particularly elections.”

This time their reaction was a little different, if equally stupid:

Wait! What? Access to them is “an essential human right in modern society”. ?

I know a guy named Donald Trump and 75 million Americans who might want to dispute the commitment of you assholes to that “right”. Or those who want to report on Hunter “Cocaine” Biden’s laptop. Or discussing gender vs. biology. Or comment on some CCP prick lying about the Chinese Sinus AIDS virus. Or discuss Chinese lab leak “conspiracies”.

Yeah, it’s a “human right” unless, apparently, you say something that FaceTwit/Google/Amazon don’t like. Then you’re gone, or certainly what you had to say is gone or dumped into a cyber Black Hole from which it can’t spread.

Yeah. That’s not the way “human rights” work, fuckers.

Still, it’s nice to know that FaceTwit have willfully denied Trump an essential human right.

I say we burn them to the ground. Well, their server farms at least.

Written by Tom Hunter

June 16, 2021 at 6:00 am

Another argument that is no longer off-limits

One of the detailed points of argument during the Great Chinese Lung Rot pandemic was around the definition of what actually constituted a Covid-19 death.

Early in the hysteria it was pointed out that deaths were being recorded as Covid simply because the patient had tested positive for Covid. This included even ridiculous examples such as deaths by car accident.

Naturally the pro-hysteria side, with the aid of the “If It Bleeds, It Leads” MSM, ferociously attacked such arguments. For the MSM it’s quite natural that the more death there is the better the story. That’s been true since the days of William Randolph Hearst and his famous “Sob Sisters” over a hundred years ago.

But even the medical “experts” had motive to push death numbers higher, since the more death there was the more likely they could persuade politicians and The People to undertake the extremist controls they advocated. Some of this was obvious with the pandemic models pushed by the likes of Neil Ferguson (“A spherical cow of uniform density in a frictionless vacuum“).

Naturally their counter-attacks against such critics focused on how you should not argue with medical experts, even though medical experts were among the critics of the Covid-death classifications. The motivations of the likes of Ferguson and company were not to be questioned, only those of their dastardly and uncaring opponents.

My, how things change when the motivations run the other way. In this case the criticism around deaths of people who have been vaccinated for Covid-19. Placed under such pressure, no less than the head of American Center for Disease Control (CDC) backs into …. the precise arguments put forward by critics of the Covid death counters.

Walensky is drawing a distinction between those who died directly because they got COVID and those who may have tested positive, but ultimately died of another comorbidity or condition. Now, to most people, that would seem like common sense. After all, why would you count someone with terminal cancer or an already failing heart as a COVID death – just because they had the virus when they died?

Obviously, what Walensky is saying is true. What we’ve known about COVID from early on from those hit the hardest told us that co-morbidities, including heart problems, lung problems, and morbid obesity, are the top factors, and that very old people (70+) naturally suffered more from the first two factors, hence them suffering a higher Covid-19 death rate than other age groups. If someone is otherwise terminally sick, even a mild case of Covid-19 could expedite matters – just as the Flu or Pneumonia normally does. The latter has long been called the “Old People’s Friend” for that very reason.

But the real point I want made clear here is that what Walensky is saying has previously been declared to be completely off-limits for over a year by the powers that be. In fact, it’s the kind of thing that has often gotten right wing-leaning sites in trouble with the social media censors of FaceTwit and company.

Yet, here is the Biden administration saying what was previously labeled as taboo, just because it now fits their narrative, which is driven by the motivation to reduce the death count rather than increase it because the latter would blow up the vaccination programmes. Meanwhile, the media don’t question it, and the social media overlords just shrug.

Oh, and the CDC has recently and rapidly shifted their positions on masks. Because Science.

The Purge

The Purge is a movie that has become a cult classic since its release in 2013.

A mix of SF and Horror, the basic plot of the movie is that a family in 2022 LA has to survive the one night of the year when all crime is allowed with no consequences:

In 2014, the New Founding Fathers of America, a totalitarian political party, are voted into office following an economic collapse. They pass a law sanctioning an annual “Purge”: for 12 hours each year all crime, including  murder,  arsontheft and rape, is legal during the period, except against government officials, and all emergency services are unavailable until 7 am. By 2022, the United States has become virtually crime-free and the unemployment rate has dropped to 1%.

Rick and Morty celebrate having purged the wealthy

My favourite parody of the movie is from the animated series Rick and Morty, “Look Who’s Purging Now” (the series itself is a parody of Back To The Future and its two main characters, Doc and Marty).

But let’s get back to reality. A couple of months ago I bookmarked a post by science writer Robert Zimmerman, which I felt was OTT pessimism, The Coming Purge:

Expect all Republicans and any fair-minded Democrats to be removed from the bureaucracy in the next four years, replaced by rapid partisan leftist progressives. Not only will the goal be to quickly consolidate their power, they will want to remove any questioning eyes as they reshape the laws to that end, sometimes illegally or inappropriately. Elections will be made less fair and easier to fake. Dissent will become more difficult, and carry worse consequences. Regulations will be honed to encourage their power, and to hobble their opponents.

It’s no longer over the top, starting with the removal of President Trump’s accounts from FaceTwat and extending to tens of thousands of followers of well-known Right-Wing voices:

There has been considerable talk about how this is all fine because of private property rights and “violating terms of service”, but it’s obvious that there is a political motivation and a bigotry at work here that’s no different than if it were aimed against religions or races, except those would be illegal:

Big Tech did not remove House Speaker Nancy Pelosi’s accounts when she called for “uprisings” against the Trump administration. Facebook and Twitter did not target Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez when she claimed that allegedly marginalized groups have “no choice but to riot.” These platforms did not act against Kamala Harris when she said the riots “should not” stop.

As that article points out, the likes of the SPLC (Southern Poverty Law Centre) have already been weaponised against the Right, to the extent of labelling anti-abortion groups as “hate groups”. The SPLC has problems itself with decades-old racial discrimination and sexual harassment. When this blew up a few years ago one of the outcomes was former employees coming forward to expose the con of exaggerating hate to bilk donors. But no matter to the likes of Joe Biden who, in a CNN town hall in October 2019, called for a kind of terror watchlist (to which the SLPC would provide “information”) to monitor organisations that oppose same-sex marriage and transgender identity. Given the double standards already applied between the Antifa/BLM riots and the Capitol Building incident by the Democrat Party, nobody should be surprised if “hate groups” soon morph into “Domestic Terrorists”.

And if you think that is an exaggeration you could listen to a person with actual experience dealing with such things, Russian dissident politician Alexey Navalny:

“This precedent will be exploited by the enemies of freedom of speech around the world,” he warned. “In Russia as well. Every time when they need to silence someone, they will say: ‘this is just common practice, even Trump got blocked on Twitter.” 

He also pointed out the same double standard noted above for the likes of Pelosi, except that in his case:

“I get death threats here every day for many years, and Twitter doesn’t ban anyone (not that I ask for it). Among the people who have Twitter accounts are cold-blooded murderers (Putin or Maduro) and liars and thieves (Medvedev). For many years, Twitter, Facebook and Instagram have been used as a base for Putin’s ‘troll factory’ and similar groups from other authoritarian countries,”

The Silicon Valley giants had already done a dry run early in 2020 for a different event:

Before long, Facebook’s Mark Zuckerberg could be seen warning that the social media giant would delete any protests against the lockdown, YouTube’s Susan Wojcicki declaring that any videos that contradicted WHO would be deleted, and Microsoft’s Bill Gates speculating about immunity passports.

But as bad as it may be for public folk like these it is the effects on the small-fry further down the food chain that are worse, like one of my go-to sites for Chicago-news-behind-the-scenes, Second City Cop. The inside information those two cops got fed by other working CPD cops was incredible. That link is actually to the WayBack Machine because as you can see they noted the purge and made the following prediction on Jan 9th:

Better view that video before it gets taken down. They’ll be coming after the blog shortly. Count on it.

And sure enough, on Jan 10 they were gone. All I could find was this statement released on a related news blog, Chicago Contrarian:

Over the weekend, we received information from a contact at Google that internal chat/e-mails led them to believe that certain precautions we had taken over the years had been breached by Google. We had gotten similar warnings from others in the past, and we dealt with or ignored them as the situation warranted. But this one was different. And this one – on the heels of Big Tech’s wholesale attack on the President, Parler and center-right to right-leaning authors, politicians and voices – pointed to a countdown that had far less time than we had thought. Most likely, far less time than you think, too. The blacklisting has begun, even if you won’t see it.

Even when it’s right in their faces.

At least the Second City cops were not going to be financially punished via social media, but radio host Robert Pratt certainly was as the purge has begun to extend far beyond the simple removal of Right Wing voices from Social Media:

Without warning the marketing heads of the corporation that manages the radio stations that air the conservative Pratt on Texas radio show for the past fifteen years announced today they were cancelling the program, despite its profitable status and high ratings.

Or how about this neonatal nurse and her business:

Cara Dumaplin, who for years has run very successful website called Taking Care of Babies, is now considered a “racist” and “hater” because she and her husband committed the unforgivable act of donating to the campaign of Donald Trump.

Luckily this guy was retired :

Elroy Stern, the 73-year-old Vietnam War veteran from Hustisford was working at his home Saturday when he was approached by three deputies from the Dodge County Sheriff’s Department. He said he got the sense he was being questioned as some kind of suspected domestic terrorist or insurrectionist, descriptors used by liberal politicians and news outlets in the wake of the Jan. 6 riot at the U.S. Capitol. It appears he was, according a copy of the incident report obtained by Empower Wisconsin under the state’s open records law. 

Lt. Robbie Weinfurter on Saturday afternoon was informed by an individual who “wanted to remain anonymous” that “Stern was trying to encrypt his phone and was planning on attending the Presidential Inauguration at the Wisconsin State Capitol with two other people”.

And? None of that is illegal. In the recent past a cop who got a phone call like that would have told the caller to shove it, but thanks to the screams about Right Wing Domestic Terrorism, faithfully echoed by a willing MSM, the cops are now obliged to investigate this crap. So Stern was then subject to questioning on his property in the presence of three sheriff’s deputies, about his integrity, patriotism, and his beliefs about the America he fought for so many years ago. All because some anonymous snitch felt that the elderly veteran concerned about election integrity who attends peaceful rallies was a threat.

Luckily the cops have not yet gone full Stasi, at least at the local level, but it’s early days in the Harris-Biden Administration and they have plenty of supporters like that snitch and one Arthur Chu:

The following effort won’t save any of us either, and it will start biting the Left on the bum as well:

There would be no end to what could be censored. Trans-sceptical feminists, already victims of Silicon Valley’s woke purges, would be completely wiped out on the basis that some idiot might interpret their intellectual, non-bigoted critiques of gender fluidity as an instruction to bash a trans person.

Which is why there has long been a clear distinction between actual “incitement to violence” by a speaker – versus the actions of people who merely think that what a speaker says is an instruction to take violent action and who then make the choice of their own volition, as did Bernie Bro, James T Hodgkinson, when he opened fire on Republican Congressman in 2017.

On this basis the White Album should be banned, given its songs ‘Helter Skelter’ and ‘Piggies’ were ‘mobilised by different audiences’ to terrible ends — the killings carried out by Charles Manson’s Family. Catcher in the Rye? Censor it. Don’t you remember how it ‘mobilised’ Mark David Chapman to kill John Lennon? As for the Bible, the Koran and any number of political texts and anthems — the risks of ‘mobilisation’ that they pose are clearly too great, so, to be on the safe side, let’s scrub those too.

And in fact the hits against the Left have already started – albeit in a small way compared to what’s hitting the US Right Wing – with Britain’s Socialist Workers Party being ripped off Facebook:

The party’s own page was removed and so were the pages of dozens of SWP activists. The SWP described FB’s actions as a ‘silencing of political activists’. They’re right. This was a unilateral act of ideological censorship carried out by the capitalist elites of Silicon Valley against a perfectly legal party based in the UK. It demonstrated the terrifying power of the Big Tech oligarchy, which clearly has no respect whatsoever for borders, territory or democratically made national laws and feels that it can reach into any nation state it chooses and switch off the oxygen of publicity to any party, group or individual it disapproves of. 

It should be noted that these dickheads have been front-and-centre on the whole De-Platforming, Blacklisting bullshit in Britain in the last decade, so watching them get a dose of their own medicine has been hilarious to watch, especially with all their subsequent squealing.

What’s more, the ideological justifications that the SWP and other leftists have put forward for these acts of censorship – the idea that ‘hateful’ speech must be suppressed, the idea that offensive ideas are wounding, the nasty patrician notion that minority groups need to be protected from difficult discussion by the authorities – have helped to shape the broader, off-campus culture of censorship...

all of this has been influenced by the modern left’s cultivation of a new form of therapeutic, paternalistic censorship that is designed to protect allegedly vulnerable individuals from the hurtful ideologies of right-wingers, critics of Islam, ‘transphobes’, etc etc.

I doubt they’ve learned anything, especially since their pages have since been restored on Facebook, an act of grace that will not be extended to voices on the Right.

Admittedly much the same could be said for the hard-line, private-sector-rules Right Wing. As this article pointed out to these idiots:

To be frank, anyone still defending big tech is part of the problem. You are going to “muh private company” yourself until every semblance of freedom is lost on these monopolistic “public squares.” And while some may be naive enough to think the ban monster isn’t coming for them, the next four years are going to get worse. Twitter, Facebook, etc. have no fear anymore. Trump is gone. The GOP lost the Senate and no longer control the committees. It’s a free for all, and everyone except those who are in hock with social media monetarily (i.e. The Dispatch crew) are vulnerable.

Instead of regulation or the “free market”, maybe the best idea is to pass a law allowing ordinary citizens to do whatever we want to the social media companies and their shitty management and employees for 12 hours once a year with no legal consequences.

Written by Tom Hunter

February 1, 2021 at 11:31 am

Bad Timing for Big Tech to pick a fight with the State

Google has threatened to pull its entire search engine capability from Australia.

This was made quite clear by their Australia-NZ Managing Director, Mel Silva, in his opening statement to the Australian Senate’s Economics Committee Inquiry:

“If this version of the Code were to become law, it would give us no real choice but to stop making Google Search available in Australia. That would be a bad outcome not just for us, but for the Australian people, media diversity and small businesses who use Google Search.”

Given that Google dominates the online search engine market, with an incredible 88.14 percent market share (Oct ’20), that’s a substantial threat to those small businesses – and all of Australia.

Over the past few years there has been sporadic discussion in various nations about forcing the likes of Google to pay for the content of the news media that they link with. Naturally this has been proposed by the Legacy MSM, as they’ve watched their subscriptions nosedive and advertising revenue vanish into places like EBay, Craigs List and TradeMe since the early 2000’s. But Google is there as well, since it gets a small slice of the money when somebody finds a service or product they want to buy via the Google search engine.

But after all the talk, little has been done, even in Europe, until now.

The proposed Australian law would force digital platforms to enter into negotiations with news media companies to pay for content. If the tech companies and media companies fail to reach an agreement, the law would empower an arbiter to determine the payments. Google is obviously not happy about this, hence the threat.

Google’s larger problem is that in the wake of the things done by Big Tech in the recent US election, even Right-Wing political leaders who could normally be expected to defend business, aren’t quite that keen to do so any longer, as PM Scott Morrison made clear in response to a question at his latest press conference:

Let me be clear. Australia makes our rules for things you can do in Australia. That’s done in our Parliament. It’s done by our government and that’s how things work here in Australia and people who want to work with that in Australia, you’re very welcome. But we don’t respond to threats.

Morrison is not the only leader that’s starting to push back against Big Tech. The nations of the European Union have long had the reputation of sticking it to America’s tech titans, as witnessed years ago when they levied a $US 794 million fine against Microsoft for its monopolistic practices against non-MS software products that needed to operate on MS Windows if they were to have a business.

HAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHH..(cough)

Google and Amazon make Microsoft look like pikers in the monopoly department, no more so than when they effectively destroyed a Facebook competitor, Parler, by denying to sell its online app (Google and Apple) and then denying it the servers it needed as a platform (Amazon).

That’s just the usual area of anti-trust and anti-monopoly law. But all this has happened in the wake of Facebook and Twitter banning the accounts of President Trump and thousands of Right-Wing online voices. The Euro’s, even hating Trump as they do, were not impressed:

“The fact that a CEO can pull the plug on POTUS’s loudspeaker without any checks and balances is perplexing,” wrote Thierry Breton, the European Union’s commissioner for the internal market on Politico. “It is not only confirmation of the power of these platforms, but it also displays deep weaknesses in the way our society is organized in the digital space.”

Merkel’s chief spokesperson Steffen Seibert said, “The right to freedom of opinion is of fundamental importance. “Given that, the chancellor considers it problematic that the president’s accounts have been permanently suspended.” He said that they didn’t have issue flagging a post. if it was ‘inaccurate, but that they should not be banning speech.

U.K Health Secretary Matt Hancock also blasted Big Tech for what they had done, for making “editorial decisions” which then raised a “very big question” about how social media is regulated. “That’s clear because they’re choosing who should and shouldn’t have a voice on their platform,” Hancock said.

And their had been earlier warnings, such as one from psychologist Robert Epstein (who voted for Hillary Clinton in 2016):

“We’re finding very substantial pro-liberal bias in all ten or at least nine out of ten search results on the first page of Google search results… not on Bing or Yahoo though,” Epstein reported. “And we’re seeing that bias in every single demographic group. In fact, in one report we generated recently, we saw more liberal bias in Google content going to conservatives than going to liberals.”

It’s hardly a surprise that the California-based giants swing Democrat hard in their political donations. It literally goes with the territory.

A 2018 survey found that conservative employees in Silicon Valley tech companies live in fear that their political beliefs will be found out. James Damore said conservatives at Google are “in the closet” and that Google executives are digging through a secret email list in order to out them.

It’s never a good idea for any business, no matter how large, to pick political fights, because you can never guarantee that the side you pick will always be in power.

European politicians have a different motivation; they guard the power of the state much more closely and jealously than their counterparts in the USA, which has a history of not trusting government and supporting the private sector against governments. In the USA there are still Republicans who will defend the likes of Facebook and Google against the regulatory efforts of the EU and Australia, but after the stunts that Big Tech pulled before and after the US election against GOP voices, the ranks of those GOP defenders must be dwindling.

Ultimately it will be a combination of private and public sector efforts that are going to whittle away at the likes of Google, as happened with previous IT monsters like IBM and Microsoft.

And those efforts might be led by another super-rich person – actually the richest man on the planet at present – as shown by his re-Tweet of a Babylon Bee satirical article.

Elon Musk has long made known his displeasure about the likes of Facebook, on more than one occasion leading chants of “Fuck Zuck. Fuck Zuck“, as he did just the other day when he playfully discussed buying Facebook:

“You know, when I told some close confidantes about this idea of mine, they all wanted to know what I’d do with Facebook,” Musk explained. “And as much as I know people like to use it as the Internet’s premier ex-girlfriend or boyfriend stalking platform, I think I have much better solution, and I mean better for the species, if not our entire planet.”

Musk showed the investors in the room an animated video that detailed his plans for Facebook. The video shows a SpaceX Falcon rocket blasting off into the sky. At one point the two solid boosters fall off and glide on a precise path down to the landing pad. Both rockets land perfectly square, and one ends up resting gently on a big red button labeled “DELETE.”

“And you can see that the second side booster would end up pressing the delete button,” Musk said. “Which would send a proton torpedo down the exhaust port of Facebook’s headquarters, triggering a chain reaction that should destroy the platform.”

He’s got my support. Google and their ilk need to wake up to the fact that they’re making a lot of political and business enemies very quickly.

Written by Tom Hunter

January 23, 2021 at 8:29 am