Tuesday, April 23, 2019

ITALY’S RULING CENTER-LEFT ‘PRETTY MUCH GONE,’ ROUTED OVER MIGRATION ISSUE

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from Infowars:

Open borders globalists destroyed by populist wave

The shake-up of the Italian political scene that saw voters ditch the ruling center-left and boost anti-establishment forces – according to preliminary results – is rooted in the migration problem, Professor Marco Bassani told RT.

“There is one clear result that is though the Democratic Party that was in power is gone, [it will get] 20 or 21 percent, we’ll see, but it’s pretty much gone. The issue was so clearly that of immigration that bother them a lot and clearly created that mess for them,” Bassani, professor of the history of political theory at the University of Milan, told RT.

The SWG projections on Sunday gave the center-left Democratic Party only 19 percent of the vote, meaning it’s likely to leave the government and go into the opposition. The success of the Euroskeptic Five Star Movement, which is expected to gain over 30 percent of the vote nationwide, came mainly from the south, can be explained by the uneven distribution of wealth across the country. The southern part has been “very much on the welfare for past 40 years,” Bassani said.

Speaking on possible coalition scenarios, Bassani noted that although he doesn’t see “any coalition coming out directly” from the elections, it should not be ruled out that the anti-immigration Lega would eventually build a coalition with the Five Star Movement.

“Probably [Lega chairman] Matteo Salvini will be a little bit ahead of [Silvio Berlusconi’s center-right Forza Italia] and he will be tempted to form a government with the Five Star [Movement]. He said ‘No, I will not do that,’ but he will be tempted,” Bassani said. He noted that “there is nothing in the Italian law that prohibits that.”

While Lega, formerly Lega Nord, is often referred to in the international media as ‘far-right’, this term is not quite accurate, Lorenzo Pregliasco, professor of political science at the University of Bologna, told RT.

They were basically a party for the interests of the north, of the old country, so they moved quite on the right of the political spectrum in the last year, but they are not seen as a far-right party, even if you can tell that they are actually,” Pregliasco argued. He noted that the “actual” far-right parties gained a very little of the vote at the election.

Read More @ Infowars.com

Video Catches Cops Savagely Beat Innocent Man with a Flashlight, The Lie to Cover It Up

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by Matt Agorist, The Free Thought Project:

Elizabeth, NJ — Jerome Wright, 57, was accused of a minor traffic violation and subsequently stopped by an unmarked police car. Seconds later, he would find himself doused with pepper spray, thrown to the ground, kicked in the head, and savagely beaten with a flashlight. The attack was so excessive and brutal that the New Jersey taxpayers were forced to shell out $250,000 to pay for it.

A key component of the lawsuit was a video taken by a nearby resident. Had it not been for the video, the court would’ve believed the police officers when they said Wright charged them and was a threat. The video also showed police kicking, stomping, and smashing Wright’s head in with a flashlight—a fact conveniently left out of the official report.

According to the lawsuit, which was settled in October, police used excessive force – including chemical spray, kicks, punches – then “fabricated” a police report in an effort to “cover up” their actions.

As app.com reports, the officers would admit in court that they left out these facts in their reports.

Elizabeth Police Officer Rui Xavier admitted in court testimony he left facts out of his arrest report: Jerome Wright’s hands were up in the air, Xavier struck Wright with a flashlight and kicked him.

Officer Xavier said he “oversaw” facts left out of his report when he was questioned in court and shown a bystander’s video. A version of the video edited to make the police interaction clearer is at the top of this story, an unedited version is below.

According to the lawsuit, Wright was accused of running a red light and an unmarked police cruiser attempted to pull him over. Because the car was unmarked, Wright did not immediately come to a stop.

Once, Wright realized that it was police in the unmarked vehicle, he immediately pulled over, according to the lawsuit.

According to the lawsuit, the officers then drew their weapons and demanded Wright exit the vehicle. But police claim Wright exited his vehicle and then charged officers, forcing them to deploy pepper spray.

Exactly what happened prior to Wright getting savagely beaten remains a mystery as the witnesses video did not start until Wright has already exited the vehicle. However, as the video shows, the 57-year-old man posed no threat and had his hands in the air, appearing to comply with everything the officers said—another fact conveniently omitted from the police report.

Wright’s lawsuit claims he asked why he was being arrested, then “without warning, justification or cause,” Figueiredo sprayed him. Wright “raised his hands in submission,” a gesture visible on the witness’ video. Then Wright was sprayed again by both officers, according to app.

However, Xavier’s report stated he joined in spraying Wright after Figueiredo’s burst “appeared to have no effect on (Wright).” The second spray “appeared to have angered (Wright) as he charged towards Officer Figueiredo. Officer Figueiredo was able to take Wright to the ground.”

In the video, Wright does not appear to be angry. He merely appears shocked and disoriented—something that most people would feel if one minute they are driving down the road and the next they are getting hit in the face with a chemical agent.

As Wright struggled to see, he appears to stumble at which point the officers kick his legs out from under him. Wright is slammed to the ground as the officers begin their attack.

Showing just how unnecessary and excessive the use of force by the officers was, Wright took his case to trial and was found not guilty.

Read More @ TheFreeThoughtProject.com

Lindsey Graham: North Korea War Would Be ‘Worth It’

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by Jason Ditz, The Anti Media:

A US war in North Korea would be bloody, with tens of thousands of US soldiers killed and millions of civilians on the Korean Peninsula. A recent US exercise projected brutality “beyond the experience of any living soldier,” according to Army chief Gen. Mark Milley.

Sen. Lindsey Graham (R-SC) tried to sum that up in two words – “worth it.” The notoriously bellicose senator insisted that the disastrous number of deaths would definitely be worth it to the US government as a boost in “long-term stability.”

At least more stability for the survivors. North Korea has always had a retaliatory capability to wipe out much of South Korea, and the development of nuclear weapons only risks making the consequences of a US attack on North Korea that much greater, and more calamitous.

Graham’s position on the deaths of literal millions isn’t necessarily shared broadly among US politicians, though President Trump has long favored a narrative suggesting that he is on the verge of launching such an attack, and that has necessarily kept Graham’s hopes up.

Read More @ TheAntiMedia.com

‘Dystopian Horror Show’ In Venezuela Leads To Massive Exodus And Offer More Dire ‘End Times Warning Signs’ To America

by Stefan Stanford, All News Pipeline:

In this heartbreaking recent story over at Yahoo News they report that socialist nation Venezuela’s rapid descent into oblivion has taken a new turn downwards as zookeepers in the starving nation are being forced to use zoo animals to feed their other zoo animals in a desperate attempt to keep some of the animals alive.

While it’s been widely reported that some of the starving masses in Venezuela had been looting zoos themselves, killing zoo animals for their next meals, the stories coming out of Venezuela over the past week are leading to calls for the US military to become involved and secure humanitarian aid for those who are running out of hope as heard in the 1st video below. What Fox News calls the ‘dystopian horror show’ in Venezuela is providing the world with all kinds of ‘end times signs’. 

As the Washington Post reports in this new story (saved at the Wayback Machine), a massive exodus is still happening with Venezuelans leaving their country in record numbers, overwhelming neighboring nations unprepared to handle the unending flow of people which some say is on par with Syrians leaving their homes following the outbreak of war there back in 2015. As we all know now, the ‘exodus’ from Syria helped lead to the overwhelming of Europe and the massive problems that we’re witnessing there today. 

With children dying, millions starving and people being persecuted by their own government and criminals who’ve taken over neighborhoods, should the US military get involved as some are calling for? As we hear in the first video below, the growing calls from the Venezuelan people themselves for American military intervention there are growing every day.  Surprisingly, the Washington Post story actually calls it like it is by reporting that the people there are fleeing “an increasingly oppressive socialist regime”, with 250,000 Venezuelans escaping to neighboring Colombia alone since last August and 3,000 more arriving every day. 

As ‘The Print’ recently reported, the outflow from people in Venezuela is now Latin America’s worst refugee crisis with an estimated 1.1 million people having already left the country as inflation skyrockets, giving America a small peak at what could happen to our own country should any ‘worst case scenarios’ unfold here. 

And while some days Americans might feel like the world has turned against us, the struggles that some Americans are now going through with food still available 24/7 in most cities and towns across the country are nothing compared to the daily lives of people in Venezuela, many of who spent many hours each day just trying to find food for themselves and their families. 

From the Washington Post story.:

There is little precedent in the region for the speed and intensity of the Venezuelan migrant crisis. 

After the leftist firebrand Hugo Chávez became president in 1999, thousands of Venezuelans — especially from the upper classes — moved out of the country. But the current exodus is far more dramatic.

Under Chavez’s handpicked successor, President Nicolás Maduro, Venezuela has reached a breaking point, with lower oil prices and economic mismanagement leading to the world’s highest inflation rate and spiraling indexes of poverty and malnutrition. At the same time, Maduro’s government has jailed and allegedly tortured opponents, sparking a wave of political asylum seekers. 

Nearly a million Venezuelans have left their country over the past two years, according to the International Organization for Migration, with experts citing a surge during the second half of 2017, when the economy took a sharp turn for the worse. That figure is in addition to the hundreds of thousands who departed between 1999 and 2015. 

“We’ve been coming here en masse, like people fleeing from a war zone,” said Marcos Ardon, 47, a former business owner in Venezuela now working in a Panama City, Colombia coffee shop.

In this new story from the NY Times they ask “Can Venezuela Be Saved?” with the socialist nation unwinding and the most prominent opposition leader there now under arrest. Showing us that when nations are in collapse, the roundups of ‘dissidents’ inevitably begins, what we’re seeing with political opposition being imprisoned there is likely just what we would get here in America should we one day fall to the depths of despair that is the ‘new norm’ for most in Venezuela.

Another ‘new norm’ that we’d never wish upon anybody as Reuters reports in this new story, the average Venezuelan has lost 24 pounds within the past year and ‘fear and want’ are considered ‘the new normal’. This heartbreaking excerpt from the Reuters story.: 

Poorer by the day, hundreds of thousands of Venezuelans have concluded that escape is their only option. With the country’s currency virtually worthless and air travel beyond the reach of all but elites, buses have become Venezuela’s caravans of misery, rolling day and night to its borders and returning largely empty to begin the process all over again.

Just after dawn, dozens of Venezuelans gathered at the dark bus station in Caracas. They lugged one big suitcase each, as well as blankets, toilet paper, cheap bread and jugs of water. Weeping wives, confused children and elderly parents hugged them over and over until it was time to check tickets and weigh bags, then hung back, waiting hours for the bus to leave. When it finally pulled out, the passengers looked down at their loved ones, pounding on the windows and blowing kisses as they speeded out of this crumbling capital city. 

On board the bus, web developer Tony Alonzo had sold his childhood guitar to help pay for his ticket to Chile. For months he had been going to bed hungry so that his 5-year-old brother could have something for dinner. Natacha Rodriguez, a machine operator, had been robbed at gunpoint three times in the past year. She was headed for Chile, too, hoping to give her baseball-loving son a better life. Roger Chirinos was leaving his wife and two young children behind to search for work in Ecuador. His outdoor advertising company had come to a bitter end: Protesters tore down his billboards to use as barricades during violent rallies against authoritarian President Nicolas Maduro. 

Their bus tells the story of a once-wealthy nation in stomach-dropping free fall, as hundreds of people flee daily from a land where fear and want are the new normal. 

Read More @ AllNewsPipeline.com

Putin – The Man Who Stopped Washington’s Regime Change Rampage

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by Mike Whitney, Market Oracle:

“It is essential to provide conditions for creative labor and economic growth at a pace that would put an end to the division of the world into permanent winners and permanent losers. The rules of the game should give the developing economies at least a chance to catch up with those we know as developed economies. We should work to level out the pace of economic development, and brace up backward countries and regions so as to make the fruit of economic growth and technological progress accessible to all. Particularly, this would help to put an end to poverty, one of the worst contemporary problems.” Vladimir Putin, President Russian Federation, Meeting of the Valdai International Discussion Club

Putin wants to end poverty? Putin wants to stimulate economic growth in developing countries? Putin wants to change the system that divides the world into “permanent winners and losers”? But, how can that be, after all, Putin is bad, Putin is a “KGB thug”, Putin is the “new Hitler”?

American liberals would be surprised to know that Putin actually supports many of the same social issues that they support. For example, the Russian President is not only committed to lifting living standards and ending poverty, he’s also a big believer in universal healthcare which is free under the current Russian Constitution. Naturally, the Russian system has its shortcomings, but there has been significant progress under Putin who has dramatically increased the budget, improved treatment and widened accessibility. Putin believes that healthcare should be a universal human right. Here’s what he said at the annual meeting of the Valdai International Discussion Club:

“Another priority is global healthcare…. All people in the world, not only the elite, should have the right to healthy, long and full lives. This is a noble goal. In short, we should build the foundation for the future world today by investing in all priority areas of human development.” (Vladimir Putin, President Russian Federation, Meeting of the Valdai International Discussion Club)

How many “liberal” politicians in the US would support a recommendation like Putin’s? Not very many. The Democrats are much more partial to market-based reforms like Obamacare that guarantee an ever-increasing slice of the pie goes to the giant HMOs and the voracious pharmaceutical companies. The Dems no longer make any attempt to promote universal healthcare as a basic human right. They’ve simply thrown in the towel and moved on to other issues.

Many Americans would find Putin’s views on climate change equally surprising. Here’s another clip from the Valdai speech:

“Ladies and gentlemen, one more issue that shall affect the future of the entire humankind is climate change. … I suggest that we take a broader look at the issue….What we need is an essentially different approach, one that would involve introducing new, groundbreaking, nature-like technologies that would not damage the environment, but rather work in harmony with it, enabling us to restore the balance between the biosphere and technology upset by human activities.

It is indeed a challenge of global proportions. And I am confident that humanity does have the necessary intellectual capacity to respond to it. We need to join our efforts, primarily engaging countries that possess strong research and development capabilities, and have made significant advances in fundamental research. We propose convening a special forum under the auspices of the UN to comprehensively address issues related to the depletion of natural resources, habitat destruction, and climate change. Russia is willing to co-sponsor such a forum…..” Valdai)

Most people would never suspect that Putin supports a global effort to address climate change. And, how would they know, after all, bits of information like that– that help to soften Putin’s image and make him seem like a rational human being– are scrubbed from the media’s coverage in order to cast him in the worst possible light. The media doesn’t want people to know that Putin is a reflective and modest man who has worked tirelessly to make Russia and the world a better place. No, they want them to believe that he’s is a scheming tyrannical despot who’s obsessive hatred for America poses a very real threat to US national security. But it’s not true.

Putin is not the ghoulish caricature the media makes him out to be nor does he hate America, that’s just more propaganda from the corporate echo-chamber. The truth is Putin has been good for Russia, good for regional stability, and good for global security. He pulled the Russian Federation back from the brink of annihilation in 2000, and has had the country moving in a positive direction ever since. His impact on the Russian economy has been particularly impressive. According to Wikipedia:

“Between 2000 and 2012 Russia’s energy exports fueled a rapid growth in living standards, with real disposable income rising by 160%. In dollar-denominated terms this amounted to a more than sevenfold increase in disposable incomes since 2000. In the same period, unemployment and poverty more than halved and Russians’ self-assessed life satisfaction also rose significantly.”

Inequality is a problem in Russia just like it is in the US, but the vast majority of working people have benefited greatly from Putin’s reforms and a system of distribution that –judging by steady uptick in disposable incomes– is significantly superior to that in the United States where wages have flatlined for over 2 decades and where virtually all of the nation’s wealth trickles upward to the parasitic 1 percent.

Since Putin took office in 2000, workers have seen across-the-board increase in wages, benefits, healthcare and pensions. Poverty and unemployment have been reduced by more than half while foreign investment has experienced steady growth. Onerous IMF loans have been repaid in full, capital flight has all-but ceased, hundreds in billions in reserves have been accumulated, personal and corporate taxes have been slashed, and technology has experienced an unprecedented renaissance. The notorious Russian oligarchs still have a stranglehold on many privately-owned industries, but their grip has begun to loosen and the “kleptocracy has begun to fade.”

Things are far from perfect, but the Russian economy has flourished under Putin and, generally speaking, the people are appreciative. This helps to explain why Putin’s public approval ratings are typically in the stratosphere. (70 to 80 percent) Simply put: Putin the most popular Russian president of all time. And his popularity is not limited to Russia either, in fact, he typically ranks at the top of most global leadership polls such as the recent Gallup International End of Year Survey (EoY) where Putin came in third (43 percent positive rating) behind Germany’s Angela Merkel (49 percent) and French President Emmanuel Macron. (45 percent) According to Gallup: “Putin has gone from one in three (33 percent) viewing him favourably to 43 percent, a significant increase over two years.”

The only place where people have a negative view of Putin is in the United States (14 percent) and EU (28 percent), the two locations where he is relentlessly savaged by the media and excoriated by the political class. This should come as no surprise to Americans who know that the chances of stumbling across an article that treats Putin with even minimal objectivity is about as likely as finding a copper coin at the bottom of the Pacific Ocean. The consensus view of the western media is that Putin is a maniacal autocrat who kills journalists and political opponents (no proof), who meddles in US elections to “sow discord” and destroy our precious democracy (no proof), and who is conducting a secret and sinister cyberwar against the United States. (no proof). It’s a pathetic litany of libels and fabrications, but its impact on the brainwashed American people has been quite impressive as Gallup’s results indicate. Bottom line: Propaganda works.

The attacks on Putin began sometime in 2006 during Putin’s second term when it became apparent that Russia was going to resist the looting and exploitation the US requires of its vassal states. This is when the powerful Council on Foreign Relations funded a report titled “Russia’s Wrong Direction” that suggested that Russia’s increasingly independent foreign policy and insistence that it control its own vast oil and natural gas resources meant that “the very idea of a ‘strategic partnership’ no longer seems realistic.” That’s right, Russia was thrown under the bus because they wanted to control their own oil and their own destiny.

John Edwards and Jack Kemp were appointed to lead a CFR task force which concocted the absurd pretext that that Putin was “rolling back democracy” in Russia. They claimed that the government had become increasingly authoritarian and that the society was growing less “open and pluralistic”. Kemp and Edwards provided the ideological foundation upon which the entire public relations campaign against Putin has been built. Twelve years later, the same charges are still being leveled at Putin along with the additional allegations that he meddled in the 2016 presidential elections.

Needless to say, none of the nation’s newspapers, magazines or broadcast media ever publish anything that deviates even slightly from the prevailing, propagandistic narrative about Putin. One can only assume that the MSM’s views on Putin are either universally accepted by all 325 million Americans or that the so-called “free press” is a wretched farce that conceals an authoritarian corporate machine that censors all opinions that don’t promote their own malign political agenda.

What Washington really despises about Putin is that he has refused to comply with their diktats and has openly rejected their model of a “unipolar” world order. As he said at the annual Security Conference at Munich in 2007:

Read More @ MarketOracle.co.uk

TRUMP AND DEMOCRATS AGREE TO DISARM THE PUBLIC

by Aaron Kesel, The Daily Sheeple:

U.S. President Donald Trump has flip-flopped from wanting to arm teachers to now siding with Democrats who  want to confiscate and ban semi-automatic firearms, violating the Second Amendment of individuals deemed “dangerous” by the government.

In a recent lawmaker conference, Trump proposed confiscation of guns from certain individuals deemed to be dangerous, even if it violates their right to due process, The Hill reported.

“I like taking the guns early, like in this crazy man’s case that just took place in Florida … to go to court would have taken a long time,” Trump said at a meeting with lawmakers on school safety and gun violence.

“Take the guns first, go through due process second,” Trump said.

Trump was responding to comments by Vice President Pence that families and local law enforcement should have more means to report potentially dangerous individuals with weapons when he made the disturbing comments against liberty and freedom.

“Allow due process so no one’s rights are trampled, but the ability to go to court, obtain an order and then collect not only the firearms but any weapons,” Pence said.

“Or, Mike, take the firearms first, and then go to court,” Trump responded.

It is worth highlighting Trump’s statements “from certain individuals deemed to be dangerous.” Who determines who is dangerous? According to a recent manual by the DoD “homegrown violent extremists” isn’t clearly defined, as Activist Post reported last year.

Further, under the Obama administration, the DHS didn’t hesitate to call those who believe in conspiracy theories potential right-wing terrorists, stating the following points might make someone a terrorist in a study by the University of Maryland, which was funded in part by the Department of Homeland Security, according to PJ Media.

  • Americans who “are fiercely nationalistic, as opposed to universal and international in orientation”
  • Americans considering themselves “anti-global”
  • Americans who are “suspicious of centralized federal authority”
  • Americans who are “reverent of individual liberty (especially their right to own guns and be free of taxes)”
  • Americans exhibiting a belief in “conspiracy theories that involve grave threat to national sovereignty and/or personal liberty and a belief that one’s personal and/or national way of life is under attack”

Meanwhile, House Democrats in agreement with Trump have introduced a bill H.R.5087 that if passed would ban the sale of semi-automatic firearms. The legislation opts to prohibit the “sale, transfer, production, and importation” of semi-automatic rifles and pistols that can hold a detachable magazine, as well as semi-automatic rifles with a magazine that holds more than 10 rounds.

Rep. David Cicilline, D-R.I., announced Monday he is introducing the legislation entitled: “Assault Weapons Ban of 2018.” More than 150 Democrats have signed on in support of the legislation, Rep. Ted Deutch, D-Fla., said. (That number since increased to 165 out of 193 serving Democrats at the time of this report.)

Read More @ TheDailySheeple.com

How far can the Americans be pushed?

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by Ghassan Kadi, The Saker:

Inspired by the Saker’s article regarding how far can the Russians be pushed, (http://thesaker.is/escalation-in-syria-how-far-can-the-russians-be-pushed/), I ask, how far can the Americans be pushed, not specifically only in Syria, but in general?

In his article, the Saker articulated in his regular rational and captivating style, the issue of Russian patience, or should we say frustration, with America’s actions and inactions in Syria. And, as I was reading the article, I began to think about looking at the situation from the other side of the mirror in a tongue-in-cheek manner; looking at it from the American perspective.

I thought back to an article I had written on the very same theme some years ago, focusing and predicting on what a desperate America would do.

The sad and ironic reality is that America does not walk the talk of competitiveness and level playing fields. America’s definition of a national threat is different from that of any other country in human history; except perhaps for ancient Rome.

For this reason, America does not believe that Russia has been pushed at all, but quite the contrary. America believes that is America that has been pushed; by not only Russia, but by many other nations. As a matter of fact, I started writing this article and I wasn’t going to finish it and submit it until President Putin pushed America even further towards the state of panic in his 1st of March speech.

American politicians operate on the pretext that America has a given right to be the greatest, wealthiest, most-developed, strongest unrivaled nation on earth.

Given its history and post WWII successes of being able to lure in the best brains of the world; not only from Germany, but the rest of the world, America believed that the homeland of any eminent scientist should be America.

Furthermore, with the multitude of defections from the USSR, not only Russian scientists were welcomed into America, but also musicians, scholars, athletes and other people of exceptional talents and capabilities.

And this list goes on, because Germany and Russia were not the only nations that exported excellence to America, but the whole world did, and perhaps for good reasons, because from the 1950’s onwards, everybody wanted to live in America; and many pop culture songs have recorded this phenomenon.

In little time, the best of the best in Europe and the rest of the world ended up in America. Not too many want to be reminded that that Wernher von Braun, the “American” rocket scientist who designed the Apollo program rockets, was a former Nazi, the same von Braun who designed the rockets that hit London in 1945.The prime reasons for his exodus and that of others, were poor living conditions, political persecution among other reasons. So if America managed to lure them in and find a way to capitalize on their great talents, then America has well and truly deserved the spoils of their genius.

But Trump’s America, even Obama’s, Bush’s and Clinton’s is not exactly that global brain and talent pivot any longer. As a result, America has changed the rules of the game in order to stay on top.

But this went further, according to the American way of looking at the rest of the world. During the Cold War, members of the former Warsaw Pact were considered as enemy states together with all other states affiliated with the USSR such as Cuba, Syria, Egypt and Angola, just to name a few. After the downfall of the USSR and the virtual elimination of serious adversaries, America “had to invent” new enemies. The post “Cold War” definition of an enemy morphed into classifying nations as members of the “Axis of Evil” if they did not kowtow to Washington’s definition of the so-called “New World Order”.

But as America grows weaker, financially, technologically, and even militarily, and as the world is beginning to look to China and Russia for the latest technology instead of America, for as long as America is able to stretch the definition of what constitutes a national threat, and for as long as the rest of the West will buy this definition, it will continue to do this.

Having lost its competitive edge and not yet being able to admit it, America is still desperately trying to cling to this edge by means that contradict with its stature as the leader of the free world and the nation that it alleges to be.

To this effect, and for America to be able to hold on to its leading position, it can no longer do this from any semblance of a position of fairness and real and honest competition. This is why America is now upscaling its enemy definition and resorting to what can be best seen as bullying tactics; thereby taking unfair advantage of other nations.

According to those new rules, now that they no longer can conceal or sugarcoat its true intentions, any nation that tries to develop itself is seen by America as a potential threat. And this applies to all aspects of development, because according to America, no other nation is allowed to be better or even close to where America is.

If America cannot compete against athletes of other nations, it will ban them.

If America cannot be trade competitive, it will impose sanctions on its competitors.

If America sees that a nation does not fully kowtow to its agenda, it will classify it as a terrorist state and tries to push it to its knees by putting a ban on international trade with it.

When the economy fails and America cannot generate wealth, REAL WEALTH, to stay on the top, it will print money.

And when American citizens turn into whistle-blowers, they are branded as traitors. So much for free speech. And where did Edward Snowden seek political asylum? In Russia out of all places. Will we in the future see a reversal of the former exodus of citizens of the USSR to the USA? We cannot say this can be ruled out.

One therefore does not have to be Kim Jong Un, sitting on a nuclear arsenal with a button in his hand threatening to hit American cities with, to be seen as a threat to America. Any person or any state touted to out-perform Americans or America now or in the future, in any field of endeavour, is considered by the American policy makers as a threat. But even speaking of Kim Jong Un, the question of whether or not his stand is offensive or defensive is quite diabolical. North Korea saw what happened to Vietnam, Iraq, Libya and Afghanistan. Most importantly, North Korea has not forgotten what happened to Korea itself. How can any rationally-minded person blame North Korea for developing nukes; if the sole intention is to stave off another American onslaught?

Back to the main subject. To put this into perspective, when America sees that anti-Russian sanctions are not working and that in fact the global Russian influence is getting stronger, when it sees Russia is in Syria making things happen, it feels threatened.

When it sees Russian state-of-the-art weaponry and electronic jamming devices in action, when it sees China building a huge fleet with two aircraft carriers and counting, when it sees Russia and China way ahead, each developing their own hypersonic, even orbital, fighter jets, (https://sputniknews.com/military/201708271056829517-mig-31-41-russia-interceptor-aircraft-features/) which America itself does not yet have, when it realizes that it has to use Russian-made rockets to propel its satellites into space, when America knows that for all practical purposes, America is no longer the world’s strongest economy, then America feels that it has been pushed to the absolute limit that only further sanctions and war can remedy.

The 1st of March 2018 Putin speech will in the future be seen as a turning point. Even though President Putin did not mention electronic jamming devices and other Russian military technology that America is well and truly behind in, he will be seen in history as the first ever non-American leader to put American military on notice by saying to American policy makers that Russia is militarily more advanced than America in both defense and attack.

And if America brags its unrivaled huge fleet, the new technology Russia has developed has the potential to turn American naval vessels into ancient and expensive sitting, or should I say floating, ducks waiting to be sunk.

In retrospect, ancient Rome saw in rivaling Carthage an existential threat until the Romans pillaged Carthage killing every single man woman and child. We cannot expect annihilation of this magnitude in the time and age, or can we? Having said that, America’s nuclear power is a huge force to be reckoned with, and to expect America to accept second or third grade world status, without a bang, is no more than wishful thinking. But how useful and effective is this power?

Read More @ TheSaker.com

Consumers Are Revolting Against Animal Cruelty — So the Poultry Industry Is Lobbying for Laws to Force Stores to Sell Their Eggs

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by Glenn Greenwald, The Intercept:

OVER THE LAST decade, thanks to a cascade of undercover exposés of factory farms and slaughterhouses by animal rights activists, it has become increasingly difficult to ignore the horrors of industrial animal agriculture. Though it has received less attention than than the systematic torture of pigs and cows, perhaps no part of animal agriculture is more heinous than egg production, an industry in which hens are confined to excruciatingly small cages for the entirety of their tortured lives. As the Humane Society put it after an extensive investigation into the indescribable cruelties of this industry, “Perhaps the most abused farm animals, nearly 280 million laying hens in the United States are confined in barren wire battery cages so restrictive the birds can’t even spread their wings.”

As consumers have awoken to the barbaric conditions of the egg industry, they have begun to turn toward incrementally more humane alternatives, such as cage-free eggs, as well as truly humane options, such as eggs from pasture-raised hens at places like Vital Farms.

The market, as they say, is speaking. As Americans become more educated about the morally repellent practices of this industry, they are increasingly refusing to reward barbaric practices by buying eggs that are the byproduct of industrial torture. 

But in response, the powerful poultry industry — which long invoked principles of the “free market” to justify their torture-derived products being available to consumers — have now reversed course. With consumers choosing more humane egg products, lobbyists for the poultry industry are pushing laws that would force stores to carry their products even if doing so offends their moral sensibilities and ethical judgments.

In Iowa, the nation’s biggest egg-producing state, lawmakers, at the behest of the poultry lobby, are making their most brazen attempt yet to fight the tides of change: simply making it a legal requirement for grocery stores to carry inhumanely produced eggs. A new bill in the Iowa state legislature, overwhelmingly passed by the Iowa House of Representatives on Monday by a vote of 81-17, would force any Iowa grocery store that participates in the Women, Infants and Children federal food assistance program and sells what the bill refers to as “specialty eggs” to also stock “conventional eggs.” “Specialty eggs” are cage-free eggs, free-range eggs, or “enriched colony cage” eggs — eggs produced in larger cages with perches and other amenities in them. “Conventional eggs” are eggs from hens confined in battery cages.

The bill’s supporters frame the measure as a consumer choice issue, arguing that the most economically destitute Iowans deserve access to lower priced eggs. Animal welfare advocates view the motivation differently.

“These bills are designed to keep a dying industry afloat that consumers no longer want to support,” said Cody Carlson, an attorney at Mercy for Animals. “This is an industry that refuses to change in any meaningful way.”

In 2010, Carlson worked at two industrial egg farms in Iowa, covertly documenting the inhumane practices employed in egg production as an undercover investigator. He and his co-workers, he told The Interceptwould walk down vast rows of battery cages looking for mummified bird corpses stuck to the floors. The cages were about the size of a microwave, with seven to 10 hens crammed into each one. The floors were made of an abrasive wire mesh, so when birds died — often from thirst or starvation after their confinement had debilitated their muscles and bones, rendering them paralyzed — the live hens would stand on top of the decaying carcasses to give their feet some relief. Workers like Carlson were responsible for removing the trampled carcasses.

Read More @ TheIntercept.com

What Do You Think Would Have Happened To America If Hillary Clinton Had Won The Election?

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by Michael Snyder, The Economic Collapse Blog:

As I travel up and down Idaho’s first congressional district, I frequently talk with voters about how we almost lost everything in November 2016.  When I ask what a Hillary Clinton presidency would have meant for this country, almost every single time I get a response like “it would have been over” or “we would have been finished”.  Our Republic was already hanging by a thread going into 2016, and even four years under Clinton may have been enough to wipe out any hope of ever turning things around.  The election of Donald Trump was literally the greatest miracle in modern American political history, but it doesn’t mean that our Republic has been saved.  What it does mean is that we now have a narrow window of opportunity to save our Republic.

Today they call themselves “Democrats”, “liberals” and “progressives”, but the truth is that leftist politicians in both parties have been steadily marching us down the road toward socialism for a very long time.  Our Constitutional Republic is barely recognizable at this point, and it is going to take emergency measures to restore it.  So now is definitely not a time for politics as usual and more of the same in Washington.  Instead, we need to send bold leaders to Washington that will be willing to turn our deeply corrupt system upside down.  If I am able to win my race and get to Washington that is precisely what I intend to do, but I can’t do it alone.  There are less than 80 days to go until May 15th, and I am asking for your help to win this incredibly close race.

Donate By Credit Card Online: https://secure.anedot.com/michaelsnyderforcongress/donate

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Donate By Check: Make your check out to “Michael Snyder For Congress” and send it to the following address…

Michael Snyder For Congress
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Doing nothing is not an option.

If we fail to take advantage of this opportunity provided by the Trump presidency, eventually the left will retake control and will continue marching us down the road toward socialism until the Republic that our founders established is destroyed for good.

In 2018 if we elect typical wimpy Republican politicians that simply want to be part of the Washington club and advance their political careers, nothing will get accomplished.

What we need are visionary men and women that are willing to stand up to the leadership of both parties and say that enough is enough.

We are simply not going to do things the same way any longer.

I’ve said it before, and I will say it again.  What we need is a second American revolution.  I am not talking about a revolution of guns and bullets, but rather one of ideas, values and principles.  I would like to share what I wrote about this second American revolution when I first announced my candidacy last July…

Today, the liberal elite dominate almost every aspect of our society. Their enormous media corporations control more than 90 percent of the news and entertainment that we watch on our televisions, their dominance of the legal system has resulted in the legalization of abortion and gay marriage, and their relentless grip on public education means that an entire generation of young Americans is being indoctrinated in their ways.

And of course for decades the liberal elite have been accustomed to pulling the strings in both major political parties. Many had believed that it would be impossible for us to ever take our government back, but the election of Donald Trump showed us that anything is possible if we will just work together.

Today, our Republic is hanging by a thread. If our founders had not stood up and fought for their way of life, the United States of America would not exist today, and if we do not stand up and fight for our way of life now, there will be nothing to pass on to our children and our grandchildren.

There are many that believe that America is too far gone, and so they are content to sit back and wait for everything to fall apart.

But that is not my choice.

I choose to fight for America.

Every generation of Americans has had to take a stand for liberty, and now it is our turn.

Please join this nationwide movement, because this literally may be the last chance we ever have to take our government back.

Read More @ TheEconomicCollapseBlog.com

You Won’t Believe It

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from Mark Dice:

Now, a Trade War — Is a Shooting War Next?

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by Jim Rickards, Daily Reckoning:

A popular thesis since the 1930s is that a natural progression exists from currency wars to trade wars to shooting wars. Both history and analysis support this thesis.

Currency wars do not exist all the time; they arise under certain conditions and persist until there is either systemic reform or systemic collapse. The conditions that give rise to currency wars are too much debt and too little growth.

In those circumstances, countries try to steal growth from trading partners by cheapening their currencies to promote exports and create export-related jobs.

The problem with currency wars is that they are zero-sum or negative-sum games. It is true that countries can obtain short-term relief by cheapening their currencies, but sooner than later, their trading partners also cheapen their currencies to regain the export advantage.

This process of tit-for-tat devaluations feeds on itself with the pendulum of short-term trade advantage swinging back and forth and no one getting any further ahead.

After a few years, the futility of currency wars becomes apparent, and countries resort to trade wars. This consists of punitive tariffs, export subsidies and nontariff barriers to trade.

The dynamic is the same as in a currency war. The first country to impose tariffs gets a short-term advantage, but retaliation is not long in coming and the initial advantage is eliminated as trading partners impose tariffs in response.

Despite the illusion of short-term advantage, in the long-run everyone is worse off. The original condition of too much debt and too little growth never goes away.

Finally, tensions rise, rival blocs are formed and a shooting war begins. The shooting wars often have a not-so-hidden economic grievance or rationale behind them.

The sequence in the early 20th century began with a currency war that started in Weimar Germany with a hyperinflation (1921–23) and then extended through a French devaluation (1925), a U.K. devaluation (1931), a U.S. devaluation (1933) and another French/U.K. devaluation (1936).

Meanwhile, a global trade war emerged after the Smoot-Hawley tariffs (1930) and comparable tariffs of trading partners of the U.S.

Finally, a shooting war progressed with the Japanese invasion of Manchuria (1931), the Japanese invasion of Beijing and China (1937), the German invasion of Poland (1939) and the Japanese attack on Pearl Harbor (1941).

Eventually, the world was engulfed in the flames of World War II, and the international monetary system came to a complete collapse until the Bretton Woods Conference in 1944.

Is this pattern repressing itself today?

Sadly, the answer appears to be yes. The new currency war began in January 2010 with efforts of the Obama administration to promote U.S. growth with a weak dollar. By August 2011, the U.S. dollar reached an all-time low on the Fed’s broad real index.

Other nations retaliated, and the period of the “cheap dollar” was followed by the “cheap euro” and “cheap yuan” after 2012.

Once again, currency wars proved to be a dead end.

Now the trade wars have begun. On Thursday, July 27, the U.S. Congress passed one of the toughest economic sanctions bills ever against Russia.

This law provided that U.S. companies may not participate in Russian efforts to explore for oil and gas in the Arctic. But it went further and said that even foreign companies that do business with Russia in Arctic exploration will be banned from U.S. markets and U.S. contracts.

These new sanctions pose an existential threat to Russia because depends heavily on oil and gas revenue to propel its economy.

Russia has vowed to retaliate.

Meanwhile, the long-expected trade war with China has begun at last. This is a trade war that President Trump threatened the entire time while he was on the campaign trail. Yet after Trump was sworn in as president he did nothing about Chinese trade and currency practices.

Trump did not declare China a “currency manipulator” and did not impose tariffs on Chinese steel and aluminum being dumped on U.S. and world markets.

The reason Trump did not act swiftly was because he wanted China’s help facing North Korea’s nuclear weapons and missile programs. If China would put pressure on North Korea, Trump would go easy on China.

But China did not hold up their end. China has done nothing to change North Korea’s behavior and will not do so in the future. Now Trump has no reason to hold back.

On Monday, Jan. 22, President Trump announced steep 30% U.S. tariffs on imports of solar panels and washing machines.

The tariffs were not aimed at China alone, but China is by far the largest source of solar panels shipped to the U.S., and one of the largest sources of washing machines.

So while Trump can claim that these tariffs were not specifically targeted at China, that is exactly what they were.

After Trump announced the tariffs on solar panels and washing machines. the Chinese Commerce Ministry expressed “strong dissatisfaction” and said it “aggravates the global trade environment.”

Now yesterday, the Trump administration announced plans to impose tariffs on steel and aluminum. The plan slaps a 25% tariff on steel and 10% on aluminum. While the tariffs are expected to apply to all countries, China was certainly a strong consideration. Trump plans to sign the trade measure next week and said they would be in effect “for a long period of time.”

Read More @ DailyReckoning.com