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Ad Valorem Censorship


Censorship Is What Happens When Powerful People Get Scared

“Only the weak hit the fly with a hammer.” – Bangambiki Habyarimana

Anyone who tells you the recent escalation of censorship by U.S. tech giants is merely a reflection of private companies making independent decisions is either lying or dangerously ignorant.

In the case of Facebook, the road from pseudo-platform to willing and enthusiastic tool of establishment power players is fairly straightforward. It really got going earlier this year when issues surrounding egregious privacy violations in the case of Cambridge Analytica (stuff that had been going on for years) could finally be linked to the Trump campaign.  It was at this point that powerful and nefarious forces spotted an opportunity to leverage the company’s gigantic influence in distributing news and opinion for their own ends. Rather than hold executives to account and break up the company, the choice was made to commandeer and weaponize the platform. This is where we stand today.

Let’s not whitewash history though. These tech companies have been compliant, out of control government snitches for a long time. Thanks to Edward Snowden, we’re aware of the deep and longstanding cooperation between these lackeys and U.S. intelligence agencies in the realm of mass surveillance. As such, the most recent transformation of these companies into full fledged information gatekeepers should be seen in its proper context; merely as a dangerous continuation and expansion of an already entrenched reality.

But it’s all out in the open now. Facebook isn’t even hiding the fact that it’s outsourcing much of its “fake news” analysis to the Atlantic Council, a think tank funded by NATO, Gulf States and defense contractors. As reported by Reuters:

Facebook began looking for outside help amid criticism for failing to rein in Russian propaganda ahead of the 2016 presidential elections…

With scores of its own cybersecurity professionals and $40 billion in annual revenue in 2017, Facebook might not seem in need of outside help.

It doesn’t need outside help, it needs political cover, which is the real driver behind this.

But the lab and Atlantic Council bring geopolitical expertise and allow Facebook to distance itself from sensitive pronouncements. On last week’s call with reporters, Alex Stamos, Facebook’s chief security officer, said the company should not be expected to identify or blame specific governments for all the campaigns it detects.

“Companies like ours don’t have the necessary information to evaluate the relationship between political motivations that we infer about an adversary and the political goals of a nation-state,” said Stamos, who is leaving the company this month for a post at Stanford University. Instead, he said Facebook would stick to amassing digital evidence and turning it over to authorities and researchers.

It would also be awkward for Facebook to accuse a government of wrongdoing when the company is trying to enter or expand in a market under that government’s control.

Facebook donated an undisclosed amount to the lab in May that was enough, said Graham Brookie, who runs the lab, to vault the company to the top of the Atlantic Council’s donor list, alongside the British government.

Facebook employees said privately over the past several months that Chief Executive Mark Zuckerberg wants to outsource many of the most sensitive political decisions, leaving fact-checking to media groups and geopolitics to think tanks. The more he succeeds, the fewer complications for Facebook’s expansion, the smaller its payroll, and the more plausible its positioning as a neutral platform. Facebook did not respond to a request for comment.

With that in mind go ahead and check out the Atlantic Council’s donor list and all the shady characters on its board.

Now that it’s been established that Facebook is in fact censoring based on advice provided by former spooks and other assorted establishment charlatans, let’s talk about what this means. I think there are two major takeaways.

First and foremost, the entire push to make arbitrary de-platforming by tech giants the new norm proves the establishment is scared to death. The very powerful folks accustomed to manipulating and shaping the world via narrative creation aren’t terrified about what Alex Jones says, they’re terrified that it’s popular. The establishment “elites” are in such denial about the consequences of the world they created, all they can do is spastically attack symptoms. Trump didn’t divide U.S. society and Alex Jones didn’t cause our widespread (and entirely justifiably) distrust in institutions; the status quo system did that via its spectacular failures. Trump’s election and Alex Jones’ popularity are merely symptoms of an incredibly corrupt and failed status quo paradigm, the stewards of which continually refuse to take a look in the mirror, accept blame and reform.

The way I see it, two key events of the 21st century directly led to the situation we find ourselves in currently. The launching of the Iraq war based on false evidence spread by intelligence agencies, politicians and the media, and the decision to bail out bankers and protect them from jail in the aftermath of the financial crisis. Combined, these two things created an environment of anger and distrust in which nearly anything becomes possible politically and socially. Trump and Alex Jones are symptoms of a failing society, not the root causes of it.

If I’m right about this, censorship of such voices by SilIcon Valley billionaires will backfire spectacularly. Alex Jones has now been made a martyr by tech oligarchs and deep state think tanks, which gives him more street cred than he had before. De-platforming does nothing to the demand side of the equation when it comes to his content, as we saw with his Infowars app soaring in the charts soon after the purge. If people want to find Alex Jones and Infowars, they will find it. Moreover, other communities are beginning to wake up to how dangerous all of this is. For example, last week we witnessed a growing number of Bitcoiners create accounts at decentralized Twitter-alternative Mastodon in case Jack Dorsey decides to step up censorship there.

Ultimately, it’s safer for society to have open public forums where all ideas — whether you consider them dangerous and crazy or not — can be openly expressed alongside each other. That way we can see what’s out there and debate or debunk them in front of large and diverse audiences.

This is 2018 and de-platforming popular content won’t make it go away. It’ll just shift it over into areas of the internet you can’t see, where it’ll fester and grow stronger over time in even more intense and radicalized echo chambers. You’ll think it’s gone from society because it’s been safely cleansed from your corporate-government Facebook timeline, but it may grow even stronger in the shadows. This is particularly the case in a nation dominated by an entrenched, corrupt and unaccountable elitist class. One that refuses to confront the reality of its monumental failures, and instead chooses to self-interestedly obsess over what are just symptoms of a decadent empire in decline.

[Byline Michael Krieger]

Liberty Blitzkrieg
13 August 2018

See Also

The Imperium Censorship of YouTube (VIDEO)

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Thought crimes: Argumentum ad baculum, and then some …


Much that we are now observing is the hallmark of fascism in censorship by force and it’s appointees are basing their actions upon logical fallacies as in the Argumentum Ad Verecundiam presented herein and elsewhere in their other arguments.

Modern totalitarians do not at first crush dissent by force; to do so would be to invite open revolt. Instead, they seek to delegitimize opposing views, by means of public ridicule and harassment. Opponents are called fools and idiots before they are accused of presenting a danger.

But eventually, dissenters are identified as threatening the well-being of the people, and are therefore to be dissuaded, controlled… and then stopped. The science is settled. The argument is over.  Argumentum ad baculum.

Interesting things begin to happen when mobocracy rules. Things like Jacobinism, Bolshevism, Nazism, fascism, and communism.

Freedom and liberty are then replaced by oppressive and fatal forms of totalitarianism. This is the “scientific” field-proven and historic result where special-interest mass delusion, hope, change, and so on, and so on occur.


“It’s a silent encroachment of totalitarianism, as only one perspective is allowed to be aired, and the ground is increasingly being cut out from under the feet of dissenters.”

“Only the weak hit the fly with a hammer.” – Bangambiki Habyarimana

George Orwell Warned Us of the Most Dangerous Type of Censorship

“The enemy is the gramophone mind, whether or not one agrees with the record that is being played at the moment.” ~George Orwell

The big tech companies are now openly censoring popular viewpoints and deleting select social media pages who supposedly ‘violate community guidelines.’

There is, of course, never a detailed explanation of why companies like You Tube and Facebook delete user generated pages (our You Tube page was deleted in 2017 for no apparent reason and our Facebook page has been throttled down to almost no reach), and there is never a reasonable way to appeal for the reinstitution of these pages.

The end result of this type of censorship, however, quite likely will not bring about the feared Soviet style clampdown on ideas that challenge the establishment. It’s more reasonable to expect that these companies have fallen pray to monopolistic hubris and will soon see massive declines in viewership, collapsing stock prices and the revolt of angry shareholders. In other words, these companies are shooting themselves in the feet.

That said, the current social/political/media climate in America today is likely to bring about the rise of a far more insidious and dangerous type of censorship: self-censorship.

The Cambridge dictionary defines self-censorship as:

“control of what you say or do in order to avoid annoying or offending others, but without being told officially that such control is necessary:”

Wikipedia defines it as:

“Self-censorship is the act of censoring or classifying one’s own discourse. This is done out of fear of, or deference to, the sensibilities or preferences (actual or perceived) of others and without overt pressure from any specific party or institution of authority.” ~Wikipedia

In other words, self-censorship is voluntarily silencing one’s self out of fear of inoffical reprisal. That reprisal can come in many forms, soft and hard, but at it’s most fundamental level it involves the fear of what others will think of you or say to you if they don’t like what they hear.

This form of censorship is already taking hold and is the result of the fear that individuals have of upsetting the mobs and virtue signaling hordes of self-righteous personalities. It is the fear that anything you say can and will be used against you in the court of public opinion and political correctness. That just by voicing your opinion on something you risk being attacked by black clad and megaphone wielding tyrants, physically removed from restaurants or harassed when conducting the ordinary affairs of life.

George Orwell wrote extensively of self-censorship at the conclusion of world war II. When he sought to publish his classic book Animal Farm, which he wrote during the war as a metaphorical critique of Soviet society, he was rejected by a number of publishers who were afraid to offend the prevailing sentiment of the time that the USSR should not be criticized for fear of instigating a diplomatic rift with the UK.

Publishers and editors were not ordered by law not to criticize the USSR, but they did so as not to offend the political establishment and popular sentiment. To this, Orwell penned an introduction to Animal Farm explaining the effects of self-censorship on a free society.

Entitled, ‘The Freedom of the Press,’ Orwell’s short letter aptly describes the situation we are faced with today.

“…the chief danger to freedom of thought and speech at this moment is not the direct interference of the MOI or any official body. If publishers and editors exert themselves to keep certain topics out of print, it is not because they are frightened of prosecution but because they are frightened of public opinion. In this country intellectual cowardice is the worst enemy a writer or journalist has to face, and that fact does not seem to me to have had the discussion it deserves.” ~George Orwell

Orwell continues in his critique:

“Unpopular ideas can be silenced, and inconvenient facts kept dark, without the need for any official ban. Anyone who has lived long in a foreign country will know of instances of sensational items of news — things which on their own merits would get the big headlines — being kept right out of the British press, not because the Government intervened but because of a general tacit agreement that “it wouldn’t do” to mention that particular fact. So far as the daily newspapers go, this is easy to understand. The British press is extremely centralized, and most of it is owned by wealthy men who have every motive to be dishonest on certain important topics. But the same kind of veiled censorship also operates in books and periodicals, as well as in plays, films and radio. At any given moment there is an orthodoxy, a body of ideas which it is assumed that all right-thinking people will accept without question. It is not exactly forbidden to say this, that or the other, but it is “not done” to say it, just as in mid-Victorian times it was “not done” to mention trousers in the presence of a lady. Anyone who challenges the prevailing orthodoxy finds himself silenced with surprising effectiveness. A genuinely unfashionable opinion is almost never given a fair hearing, either in the popular press or in the highbrow periodicals.” ~George Orwell

In this dynamic, the influences of peer pressure and commercial pressures do more to silence dissent than any official decree of censorship could possibly accomplish.

When speaking on the importance of press freedom, American writer E.B. White spoke of the cultural importance of having many independent viewpoints and fearless news organizations professing a wide range of ideas.

“The press in our free country is reliable and useful not because of its good character but because of its great diversity. As long as there are many owners, each pursuing his own brand of truth, we the people have the opportunity to arrive at the truth and to dwell in the light. The multiplicity of ownership is crucial. It’s only when there are a few owners, or, as in a government-controlled press, one owner, that the truth becomes elusive and the light fails. For a citizen in our free society, it is an enormous privilege and a wonderful protection to have access to hundreds of periodicals, each peddling its own belief. There is safety in numbers: the papers expose each other’s follies and peccadillos, correct each other’s mistakes, and cancel out each other’s biases. The reader is free to range around in the whole editorial bouillabaisse and explore it for the one clam that matters—the truth.”  ~E. B. White

Final Thoughts

Media censorship is a shift in the flow of information, while self-censorship is a shift in consciousness. It is the dangerous cornerstone of group-think.

We haven’t reached that point yet, not by a long shot, as is evident in the fact that both sides of the political spectrum are 100% engaged in bickering with the other side. But as social discourse continues to digress and corporations and other institutions feel more empowered to compel their employees and clients to unofficially comply with one political view or another, self-censorship will come creeping more so into our culture.

Will you have the courage to be yourself as the push towards internet censorship gains momentum?

***

This article (George Orwell Warned us of the Most Dangerous Type of Censorship) was originally created and published by Waking Times and is published here under a Creative Commons license with attribution to DylanCharles and WakingTimes.com. It may be re-posted freely with proper attribution, author bio, and this copyright statement.

Delivered by The Daily Sheeple (edited)
Accessed 17 August 2018


In our epoch of too many noises and many frustrations, many “free” minds have given up the struggle for decency and individuality. They surrender to the “Zeitgeist,” often without being aware of it.

… the more familiar people are with the concepts of thought control and menticide, the more they understand the nature of the propaganda barrage directed against them, the more inner resistance they can put up, even though inevitably some of the inquisitor’s suggestions will leak through the barrier of conscious mental defense.

~ Joost A. M. Meerloo, M.D

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Censorship Is What Happens When Powerful People Get Scared

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Anthropomorphism Revisited


It’s a tiny handful of the community that’s responsible for the lion’s share of the bloodshed. In Boston during the period between the mid-1990s and mid-2000s, more than half of all murders, more than three-quarters of youth homicides and 70 percent of all shootings were perpetrated by 1 percent of youth between the ages of 15 and 24,

Most attacks occurred in circumstances where gangs or drugs played an important role (according to BPD investigation results). Most were in outdoor locations in the disadvantaged Boston neighborhoods of Roxbury, Mattapan, and Dorchester.

“As shown by Yale University sociologists in a recent study, 70 percent of all shootings in Chicago can be located in a social network composed of less than 6 percent of the city’s population.”

Researching and addressing the complicated human factors that lead to gun violence may be challenging, but doing so has far more potential to serve the public…

There is a concise way of expressing the simple fact that guns aren’t sentient, but rather are inanimate objects not imbued with ethical or moral properties. As such, guns on their own cannot kill, but can be used by a person to kill. The expression “guns don’t kill people; people kill people,” is a rejection of a juvenile anti-gun anthropomorphism.

Psychological warfare serves to weaken mass opinion through fear and fright. Collective paralysis is a reaction to the fright and terror… Most people are easily seduced by welcome suggestions. In states of collective fear, they search for the most acceptable suggestion…

Fear and terror, before penetrating deeply into the mind, require an incubation phase before they cause inner explosion and neurotic reactions…

Fear, fright, and intimidation may pass through long incubation periods and have extensive aftereffects on human thinking and the mind. The human brain is heavily burdened, and much time can elapse before the personality again finds the ability to stabilize itself. — A.M. Meerloo M.D., 1949.


Government-funded Researchers Discover Basic Ballistics

Fairfax, VA – -(Ammoland.com)- Each year, Sen. Jeff Flake (R-Ariz.) publishes the Wastebook, a project developed by former Sen. Tom Coburn (R-Okla.) in 2008.

The document details the most ridiculous instances of federal government largesse, such as $1.7 million for a hologram comedy club in Jamestown, N.Y., $450,000 for National Science Foundation-funded research that determined dinosaurs couldn’t sing, and $230,000 for a National Institutes of Health-funded study showing that rhesus macaques are aroused by the color red. For the 2018 edition, Flake’s staff may want to examine a recent U.S. Bureau of Justice Assistance-funded study that came to the shocking conclusion that larger caliber firearms are more deadly than relatively smaller caliber firearms.

The study is titled, The Association of Firearm Caliber With Likelihood of Death From Gunshot Injury in Criminal Assaults, was published on the Journal of the American Medical Association Network Open, and authored by Anthony A. Braga and Philip J. Cook. For the project, the authors examined shootings that occurred in Boston between 2010 and 2014. Shootings were coded by the characteristics of the victim, the number of bullet wounds they suffered, the location of their wounds, and whether or not the wounds were fatal.

The researchers also ordered the cases into three groups by the caliber of firearm used in the shooting. Calibers .22, .25 and .32 were categorized as “small,” .38, .380 and 9mm as “medium,” and .357 magnum, .40 S&W, .44 magnum, 10mm, and 7.62x39mm as “large.”

The researcher found that the use of “medium” and “large” caliber guns resulted in more fatal wounds than the “small” caliber firearms. The authors wrote,

We were able to confirm the strong positive association between caliber and fatality rate and summarize the overall effect of larger calibers by simulating the effect on outcomes if all the guns had been small caliber. The result is a 39.5% reduction in the probability of death, implying an equal reduction in the gun homicide rate if the same shootings had occurred but with small-caliber weapons, rather than the actual mix of small, medium, and large calibers.

The general conclusion of this research has always been evident to anyone even remotely familiar with firearms or physics. The kinetic energy of a moving projectile is a function of its velocity and mass. A faster and heavier bullet carries more energy than a lighter and slower bullet, and can potentially impart more damage on the intended target.

This is obvious to the firearms community. Calibers and projectiles are marketed on the basis of their so-called “stopping power.” State Fish and Wildlife agencies require minimum caliber size and muzzle energy for taking certain game. Gun owners debate incessantly about the characteristics and effectiveness of different calibers. Enterprising gun enthusiasts construct elaborate tests to observe numerous calibers and projectiles under varying conditions and share the results online.

New calibers are developed with the express intent of being more effective. For instance, one of the “large” calibers noted by the researchers, 10mm Auto, was developed to ameliorate the perceived shortcomings of other cartridges. Following the 1986 FBI shootout with a pair of bank robbers in Miami, Fla., the Bureau determined that the 9mm cartridges used by their agents prolonged the deadly encounter. After extensive testing of the performance characteristics of numerous calibers and projectiles, the FBI adopted the 10mm for a short period.

Aside from obvious, the JAMA study is largely redundant. The FBI’s Ballistic Research Facility is considered the gold standard of ballistics research and conducts testing on the effectiveness of various calibers and projectiles. In 2015, their exhaustive research into the ballistic, medical, psychological, and tactical realities of the use of different calibers led to the Bureau bring 9mm back into standard service.

The broad findings of the JAMA study are what anyone would have predicted. More ridiculous is what the researchers and the anti-gun press have attempted to extrapolate from these “findings.” The authors contend that their research strikes a blow at a key gun rights argument, writing,

The opposing view holds that it is not the type of weapon that determines whether the victim lives or dies, but rather the intent of the assailant. This notion is captured by the old slogan “guns don’t kill people; people kill people.” In this view, an assailant who is determined to kill will do what is necessary to accomplish that purpose, regardless of weapon type.

This was parroted by the Washington Post’s dubiously named Wonkblog, in a piece titled, “Actually, guns do kill people, according to a new study.” The author of the article contended,

The results undercut the idea that “guns don’t kill people, people kill people.” That catchy turn of phrase is often used by gun rights supporters to emphasize the human role in gun violence rather than the gun itself.

Just how does it do that? To gun rights supporters, the phrase “guns don’t kill people; people kill people,” isn’t some sort of commentary on the effectiveness of the various means of committing murder. It is a concise way of expressing the simple fact that guns aren’t sentient, but rather are inanimate objects not imbued with ethical or moral properties. As such, guns cannot kill, but can be used by a person to kill. The expression is a rejection of a juvenile anti-gun anthropomorphism.

Moreover, there is ample evidence in the JAMA study that illustrates this gun rights argument. The authors noted,

Most attacks occurred in circumstances where gangs or drugs played an important role (according to BPD investigation results). Most were in outdoor locations in the disadvantaged Boston neighborhoods of Roxbury, Mattapan, and Dorchester.

This is in line with Braga’s other research on the severe concentration of gun violence within certain communities. In a 2010 item for the Journal of Quantitative Criminology, titled, “The Concentration and Stability of Gun Violence at Micro Places in Boston, 1980–2008” Braga and his fellow researchers explained that,

Recent advances in criminological research suggest that there is significant clustering of crime in micro places, or ‘hot spots,’ that generate a disproportionate amount of criminal events in a city… We find that Boston gun violence is intensely concentrated at a small number of street segments and intersections rather than spread evenly across the urban landscape between 1980 and 2008.

Then-Yale Ph.D. candidate and current Assistant Professor at Rutgers University Michael Sierra-Arévalo outlined some of the research on this topic in a 2015 piece for the Hartford Courant, titled, “The Shooting Disease: Who You Know, Where You Live.” Sierra-Arévalo explained,

The concentration is not just in terms of place, but also people. It’s a tiny handful of the community that’s responsible for the lion’s share of the bloodshed. Turning to Boston again, in the period between the mid-1990s and mid-2000s, more than half of all murders, more than three-quarters of youth homicides and 70 percent of all shootings were perpetrated by 1 percent of youth between the ages of 15 and 24.

One percent.

The researcher went on to add, “As shown by Yale University sociologists in a recent study, 70 percent of all shootings in Chicago can be located in a social network composed of less than 6 percent of the city’s population.”

This research all underscores the importance of the human role in gun violence, rather than the mere presence of a certain type of firearm. Researching and addressing the complicated human factors that lead to gun violence may be challenging, but doing so has far more potential to serve the public than redundant findings obvious to any middle school physics student.

Opinion (edited)


About:
Established in 1975, the Institute for Legislative Action (ILA) is the “lobbying” arm of the National Rifle Association of America. ILA is responsible for preserving the right of all law-abiding individuals in the legislative, political, and legal arenas, to purchase, possess and use firearms for legitimate purposes as guaranteed by the Second Amendment to the U.S. Constitution. Visit: www.nra.org


There seems to be some confusion with the term “to kill,” and with the terms “to defend,” or for that matter, “to protect one’s family, life and property.”

In the latter sense, placing blame is hardly the issue. At this point in time, the U.S. Constitutional Document informs us of our moral and sovereign duties as Americans in a free society. We the people, as a modern society have evolved from the citizenry of the past, but we find the basic nature of the criminal individual has not; this is why such a document as our Constitution is not only needed, but is still required in the present.


Flashback: House sit-in over gun legislation enters sixth hour

“There are more background checks and regulations for owning a gun than there are for coming into the country.” Think about that a minute.

There are those not realistically looking at the data. If they truly did, they would realize something is very wrong there.

Biological Hazard – Vibrio cholerae, diarrhea & dysentery outbreak (Update) 2018: Gulf Coast region, USA


CHOLERA, DIARRHEA AND DYSENTERY UPDATE (26): AMERICAS (USA) TOXIGENIC O141 STRAIN, 2017
******************
Published Date: 2018-08-03 09:25:11
Subject: PRO/EDR> Cholera, diarrhea & dysentery update (26): Americas (USA) toxigenic O141, 2017
Archive Number: 20180803.5944168

Date: Thu 2 Aug 2018
Source: CDC. MMWR Morb Mortal Wkly Rep 2018; 67(30); 838-9 [edited]

ref: Loeck BK, Roberts A, Craney AR, et al. Notes from the Field: Toxigenic _Vibrio cholerae_ O141 in a traveler to Florida — Nebraska, 2017; MMWR Morb Mortal Wkly Rep 2018; 67: 838-9.
———————————————————————-
_Vibrio cholerae_ serogroups O1 and O139 are toxigenic strains associated with epidemic cholera; however, other _Vibrio cholerae_ serogroups, such as O75 and O141, can also produce cholera toxin, leading to a cholera-like illness identified as vibriosis (1). Cholera and vibriosis are more common in the Gulf Coast region of the USA and are related to exposure to coastal water sources and consumption of raw or undercooked shellfish. Persons typically become ill approximately 24-72 hours after exposure. Symptoms can last from 3 to 7 days and range from mild diarrhea to profuse watery diarrhea and vomiting, which can lead to severe dehydration, hospitalization, and death (2).

In October 2017, Nebraska state and local health department officials received an electronic laboratory report of stool culture positive for _V. cholera_. The Three Rivers Health Department in Fremont, Nebraska, began an investigation and completed a patient interview using the Cholera and Other _Vibrio_ Illness Surveillance (COVIS) system form.

The patient, a woman from Nebraska aged 51 years, had recently traveled to Florida. She reported exposure of her feet in the Gulf of Mexico and consumption of raw oysters at a local restaurant. She developed diarrhea approximately 36-48 hours after eating at the restaurant. Upon return to Nebraska, she sought medical care and a stool specimen was collected, from which _V. cholerae_ was isolated. The patient was not hospitalized and recovered from the illness. The isolate was forwarded to the Nebraska Public Health Laboratory where additional phenotypic testing presumptively identified the isolate as _V. cholerae_. The isolate was subsequently submitted to CDC for serotyping and molecular testing to confirm the species identification and to test for the presence of cholera toxin genes. The isolate, which was confirmed as _V. cholerae_ by rpoB gene sequencing, was subsequently identified as serogroup O141 and reported as positive for the ctxA cholera toxin gene and the ompW gene but negative for the toxR and tcpA genes. Although genes coding virulence within the _V. cholerae_ strains can vary, these virulence genes can be used to assess the epidemic potential of this species. For example, both the ctxA gene and the toxR gene (the regulatory gene that controls expression of cholera toxin) are commonly found in the O1 and O139 epidemic strains of _V. cholerae_. A traceback investigation by the Florida Department of Agriculture found that the oysters consumed were harvested from the Gulf Coast region in either Florida or Louisiana. No other cases were identified.

Although O141 has not been found to be an outbreak-associated strain, toxigenic _V. cholerae_ serogroup O141 has been associated with sporadic illness in the USA (1,3). These infections have been associated with seafood exposure in Florida and New Jersey and freshwater exposure in Arizona, Michigan, Missouri, and Texas. Since the initiation of COVIS in 1988, 16 cases of toxigenic O141 have been reported in the USA. This is the first case reported from Nebraska.

Vibriosis has been a nationally notifiable condition since 2007. Vibrio species are difficult to culture, because they are not easily identified using routine enteric media and often require selective media. However, detection of _Vibrio _species might become more common with increased use of culture-independent diagnostic testing (CIDT) using molecular-based methods, which are considered to be more sensitive than are standard cultures. Some of these CIDT assays are designed to detect a subset of _Vibrio_ species and might not identify all cases or only identify cases as vibriosis without species information. For example, the FilmArray Gastrointestinal Panel (BioFire Diagnostics, LLC) has genomic targets for both _Vibrio_ species and _Vibrio cholerae_. The manufacturer’s instructions for this assay indicate a limitation for detecting strains of _V. cholerae_ that do not carry the toxR gene, suggesting that the isolate in this case, without culture follow-up, could have been detected only as a _Vibrio_ species. Therefore, CDC asks that state health departments submit all _V. cholerae_ isolates for confirmatory testing and additional characterization and suggests that states consider reflex culture testing on specimens identified through CIDT as _Vibrio_ species or _V. cholerae_. States that require reporting of vibriosis cases should consider the role confirmatory culture testing plays in the assessment of relevant risk factors to improve public health detection and case management.

References
———-
1. Crowe SJ, Newton AE, Gould LH, et al: Vibriosis, not cholera: toxigenic _Vibrio cholerae_ non-O1, non-O139 infections in the United States, 1984-2014. Epidemiol Infect 2016; 144: 3335-3341; abstract available at https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/27510301
2. CDC: Cholera — _Vibrio cholerae_ infection. Atlanta, GA: US Department of Health and Human Services, CDC; 2018; available at https://www.cdc.gov/cholera/general/index.html
3. Crump JA, Bopp CA, Greene KD, et al. Toxigenic _Vibrio cholerae_ serogroup O141-associated cholera-like diarrhea and bloodstream infection in the United States. J Infect Dis 2003;187:866; available at https://academic.oup.com/jid/article/187/5/866/2191646

Communicated by:
ProMED-mail
<promed@promedmail.org>

[As a review, the flagellar (H) antigens of _Vibrio cholerae_ are shared with many water vibrios and, therefore, are of no use in distinguishing strains causing epidemic cholera. The O (somatic) antigens, however, do distinguish strains of _V. cholerae_ into 139 known serogroups. Almost all of these strains of _V. cholerae_ are non-virulent. Until the emergence of the Bengal (O139) strain (which is “non-O1”), a single serogroup, designated O1, has been responsible for epidemic cholera.

There are 3 distinct O1 serotypes, named Ogawa, Inaba, and Hikojima, each of which may display the “classical” or El Tor phenotype (or biotype). The biotypes are distinguished by their expression of surface antigens A, B, and C. Ogawa contains antigens A and B; Inaba antigens A and C; and Hikojima antigens A, B, and C. The latter serotype is relatively rare.

Not here, but in almost all cases, non-O1, non-O139 _V. cholerae_ isolates do not possess the genes for cholera toxin as the non-toxigenic O1 in this posting. Some isolates can cause substantial diarrhea (1-4). The type III secretion system (TTSS) is a mechanism for Gram negative bacilli to introduce effector proteins into host cell cytoplasm (5). It has been reported that a functional TTSS is required for at least in some non-O1, non-O139 isolates to induce diarrhea in an animal model associated with small bowel damage and production of proinflammatory cytokines (6). In addition, TTSS contributes to virulence even in the presence of cholera toxin and TCP [toxin coregulated pilus (TCP), an intestinal colonization factor] (6).

References
———-
1. Bhattacharya MK, Dutta D, Bhattacharya SK, et al. Association of disease approximating cholera caused by _Vibrio cholerae_ of serogroups other than O1 and O139. Epidemiol Infect. 1998; 120(1): 1-5; https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC2809342/.
2. Sharma C, Thungapathra M, Ghosh A, et al. Molecular analysis of non-O1, non-O139 _Vibrio cholerae_ associated with an unusual upsurge in the incidence of cholera-like disease in Calcutta, India. J Clin Microbiol. 1998; 36: 756-63; http://jcm.asm.org/content/36/3/756.long.
3. Bidinost C, Saka HA, Aliendro O, et al. Virulence factors of non-O1, non-O139 _Vibrio cholerae_ in Cordoba, Argentina. Rev Argent Microbiol. 2004; 36: 158-63; https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/15786867.
4. Chatterjee SC, Ghosh K, Raychoudhuri A, et al. Incidence, virulence factors, and clonality among clinical strains of non-O1, non-O139 _Vibrio cholerae_ isolates from hospitalized diarrheal patients in Kolkata, India. J Clin Microbiol. 2009; 47(4): 1087-95; http://jcm.asm.org/content/47/4/1087.long.
5. Gatan JE, Colimer A. Type III secretion machines: bacterial devices for protein delivery into host cells. Science 1999: 284(5418): 1322-8; http://science.sciencemag.org/content/284/5418/1322.long.
6. Shin OS, Tam VC, Suzuki M, et al. Type III secretion is essential for the rapidly fatal diarrheal disease caused by non-O1, non-O139 _Vibrio cholerae_. mBio 2011; 2(3): e00106-11; http://mbio.asm.org/content/2/3/e00106-11.long.
– Mod.LL

HealthMap/ProMED-mail maps
Nebraska, United States: http://healthmap.org/promed/p/229
Florida, United States: http://healthmap.org/promed/p/212]

See Also

2017
—-
Cholera, diarrhea & dysentery update (99): Americas (USA) O1, non-toxigenic, 2016 20170915.5317160

2016
—-
Cholera, diarrhea & dysentery update (12): USA (WV) urine isolate, RFI 20160328.4118916
2015
—-
Cholera – USA (UT): non-O1, non-O139 20150708.3492387

2013
—-
Cholera – USA: (SC) probable non-O1, non-O139 20131017.2007319

2011
—-
Cholera – USA (05): (NY) non-O1, non-O139 20110706.2046
Cholera – USA: (NY): RFI 20110616.1840
Cholera O75 – USA: (FL) raw oysters, warning 20110511.1443
Cholera – USA (03): (NY) ex Dominican Rep. banquet 20110208.0429
Cholera – USA (02): (MA) ex Dominican Rep. banquet 20110130.0364
Cholera – USA: (MA) ex Dominican Rep., banquet 20110127.0326

2010
—-
Cholera – Haiti (21): USA (FL) 20101117.4171

2006
—-
Cholera, post-hurricane, 2005 – USA (LA) 20060120.0192

2005
—-
Cholera – USA (Hawaii): RFI 20050615.1685
………………………………………….ll/mj/ml

Source:
A ProMED-mail post
ProMED-mail is a program of the International Society for Infectious Diseases


Note:

Rotavirus is a contagious virus that can cause gastroenteritis (inflammation of the stomach and intestines). Symptoms include severe watery diarrhea, often with vomiting, fever, and abdominal pain. Infants and young children are most likely to get rotavirus disease. They can become severely dehydrated and need to be hospitalized and can even die.

Vibrio cholerae, and Cryptosporidium parvum are several water safety threats classified as potential Category B bioterrorism pathogens that can cause Rotavirus symptoms. These are the second highest priority organisms/biological agents.

Pathogenic organisms and toxins such as these may persist in food and water supplies. Humans are also a source of infection.

Food or waterborne pathogens that may be used as bioterrorism agents:
Salmonella species
Shigella dysenteria
Escherichia coli 0157:H7
Giardia lamblia
Vibrio cholerae
Cryptosporidum species
Campylobacter species


‘Democratic Socialism’ and the oxymoron


“[T]he first step in the revolution by the working class is to raise the proletariat to the level of ruling class to win the battle of democracy.”
— Communist Manifesto, chapter 2

“What will be the course of this revolution? Above all, it will establish a democratic constitution, and through this, the direct or indirect dominance of the proletariat. […] Democracy would be wholly valueless to the proletariat if it were not immediately used as a means for putting through measures directed against private property and ensuring the livelihood of the proletariat.”
— The Principles of Communism

“[I]t is very clear that in fundamental theory, socialism and democracy are almost, if not quite, one and the same. They both rest at bottom upon the absolute right of the community to determine its own destiny and that of its members. Men as communities are supreme over men as individuals.”
— Woodrow Wilson, “Socialism and Democracy”

Think this sounds good: income equality, a fair living wage for everyone, plentiful employment opportunities, quality healthcare coverage for all, affordable college education for all who want it, easy access to affordable, quality housing, and a tax system where the so-called rich pay their “fair share?” It’s strange however, those that are pushing these social hot buttons never get around to defining who exactly would qualify as the “rich” nor what a “fair share” tax would be. Especially considering a great many of these Socialist Democrats making all the noise are already millionaires; So, this being the case, what is stopping them from giving away most of their own wealth now if they really are so convinced it would solve all our problems? 

Related

What You Need To Know About The Democratic Socialists Of America

An oxymoron is a word or group of words that is self-contradicting

“I think we just need to realize that the end goal is, ultimately, like social control of the means of production … You know we don’t just want to improve capitalism, we will ultimately want to get rid of it.” — Joe Cernelli, a founding member of that West Virginia DSA chapter.

The DSA views capitalism as an oppressive system — “We see it as fundamentally undemocratic,” … “When it comes right down to it, we believe people need to be able to live a dignified life. I mean, there are certain things that should not be left up to the (individual) market,” — DSA National Director Maria Svart

See Also

There’s No Such Thing as ‘Democratic Socialism’


Republic vs. Democracy

Just after the completion and signing of the Constitution, in reply to a woman’s inquiry as to the type of government the Founders had created, Benjamin Franklin said, “A Republic, if you can keep it.”

A Republic is representative government ruled by law (the United States Constitution). A Democracy is government ruled by the majority (mob rule). A Republic recognizes the unalienable rights of individuals while Democracies are only concerned with group wants or needs for the good of the public, or in other words social justice.
Lawmaking is a slow, deliberate process in our Constitutional Republic requiring approval from the three branches of government, the Legislative, Executive, and Judicial branches for checks and balance. Lawmaking in Democracy occurs rapidly requiring approval from the majority by polls and/or voter referendums, which in turn is mob rule 50% plus 1 vote takes away anything from the minority. Here is one example; if 51% of the people don’t pay taxes they can vote a tax increase on the 49% that do, which is mob rule.

Democracies always self-destruct when the non-productive majority realizes that it can vote itself handouts from the productive minority by electing the candidate promising the most benefits from the public treasury. To maintain their power, these candidates must adopt an ever-increasing tax and spend policy to satisfy the ever-increasing desires of the majority. As taxes increase, incentive to produce decreases, causing many of the once productive to drop out and join the non-productive. When there are no longer enough producers to fund the legitimate functions of government and the socialist programs, the democracy will collapse, always to be followed by a Dictatorship.
Even though nearly every politician, teacher, journalist and citizen believes that our Founders created a democracy, it is absolutely not true. The Founders knew full well the differences between a Republic and a Democracy and they repeatedly said that they had founded a republic in numerous quotes, and documents.

Article IV Section 4, of the Constitution “The United States shall guarantee to every State in this Union a Republican Form of government, and shall protect each of them against Invasion“, the word Democracy is not mentioned in the Constitution at all. Madison warned us of the dangers of democracies with this quote, along with more warnings from others.

“Hence it is that democracies have ever been spectacles of turbulence and contention; have ever been found incompatible with personal security or the rights of property; and in general have been as short in their lives as they have been violent in their deaths… A republic, by which I mean a government in which a scheme of representation takes place, opens a different prospect and promises the cure for which we are seeking.” James Madison, Federalist Papers No. 10 (1787).

“Democracy is two wolves and a lamb voting on what to have for lunch. Liberty is a well-armed lamb contesting the vote!” Ben Franklin

“A democracy is nothing more than mob rule, where fifty-one percent of the people may take away the rights of the other forty-nine.” Thomas Jefferson

“Remember, democracy never lasts long. It soon wastes, exhausts, and murders itself. There never was a democracy yet that did not commit suicide.” John Adams

“But government in which the majority rule in all cases can not be based on justice, even as far as men understand it.”  Henry David Thoreau

Our military training manuals use to contain the correct definitions of Democracy and Republic. The following comes from Training Manual No. 2000-25 published by the War Department, November 30, 1928.

Below is what the Manual No. 2000-25 says in Section IX Lesson 9.

DEMOCRACY:
A government of the masses.

Authority derived through mass meeting or any other form of “direct” expression.

Results in mobocracy.

Attitude toward property is communistic–negating property rights.

Attitude toward law is that the will of the majority shall regulate, whether is be based upon deliberation or governed by passion, prejudice, and impulse, without restraint or regard to consequences.

Results in demagogism, license, agitation, discontent, anarchy.

REPUBLIC:
Authority is derived through the election by the people of public officials best fitted to represent them.

Attitude toward property is respect for laws and individual rights, and a sensible economic procedure.

Attitude toward law is the administration of justice in accord with fixed principles and established evidence, with a strict regard to consequences.

A greater number of citizens and extent of territory may be brought within its compass.

Avoids the dangerous extreme of either tyranny or mobocracy.

Results in statesmanship, liberty, reason, justice, contentment, and progress.

Is the “standard form” of government throughout the world.

The manuals containing these definitions were ordered destroyed without explanation about the same time that President Franklin D. Roosevelt made private ownership of our lawful money (US Minted Gold Coins) illegal. Shortly after the people turned in their $20 gold coins, the price was increased from $20 per ounce to $35 per ounce. Almost overnight F.D.R., the most popular president this century (elected 4 times) looted almost half of this nation’s wealth, while convincing the people that it was for their own good. His right hand man, Harry Lloyd Hopkins, the New Deal architect, who suggested many of F.D.R.’s policies said.

“We shall Tax and Tax, Spend and Spend, Elect and Elect, because the people are too damn dumb to know the difference”.  Harry Hopkins


Rule of Law vs. Rule of Man

All of the governments that mankind has instituted in the history of the world can be divided into two categories. Any and every state can be categorized into either rule of law governments or rule of men governments. History has proven that any nation founded upon the shifting sands of the whim of men will always degenerate into oligarchy and tyranny. However, a nation of virtuous, educated people, which is founded upon and holds to the bedrock of a rule of law system will maintain prosperity and freedom despite the natural occurrences and challenges of history. This elementary yet strikingly relevant dichotomy is misunderstood by many Americans. And, this misunderstanding is one of the many reasons why our nation has been mistakenly led away from a rule of law system toward something that was not intended by our Founding Fathers.

First, it is important to define the two systems. A governmental system ruled by men is any system in which fallen man directs the course of the nation. This includes not only dictatorships and oligarchies where one man or a select few call all of the shots, but also democracies where majority opinion rules without any restraints or protections for minority opinion and individual liberty. According to our Founding Fathers, democracies were as dangerous as any form of government. Benjamin Franklin defined democracy as “three wolves and a lamb voting on what to have for lunch,” and explained that true liberty is “a well-armed lamb contesting the vote.” In sum, any rule of man system, whether mob rule or rule by the elites, is destined for failure. Liberty and property will not be protected under such systems, and the nation will ultimately suffer under tyranny.

A rule of law system is quite the opposite. In a rule of law system, the nation possesses a set of guidelines usually in a constitution, which sets the terms for governing. Only according to those blueprints for governing, then, can any men write and execute additional laws. The constitution is the law of the land, and everything else must be measured up against it. A constitutional republic is such a form of government. The constitution is written to assign tasks to the various branches of government and to assure the God-granted liberty and property rights of every citizen. Then, representatives of the people govern according to the constitutional limits of power with a constant concern for individual liberty and constitutional integrity.

Unfortunately, many Americans have become confused regarding these two drastically different systems for governing. Americans have been taught in school, by the media and by politicians that democracy is good, and that the more democracy we have, the better. This mistaken view is not simply a semantic error, as some might assert, but it is a dangerous misunderstanding. Most Americans actually believe that the majority ought to rule; they do have a correct understanding of democracy, but they mistakenly advocate it because that is what they have been taught to do.

The biggest danger in a democracy is that the very things that government is instituted to protect (liberty and property) are in constant danger to the whim of the majority. In a democracy, when a crisis occurs (whether real or manufactured), the majority calls for government solutions. Then, when politicians answer that call and government grows in size and influence over peoples’ lives, there is an equal and opposite decrease in the amount of liberty and property maintained by the people. 20th century American history shows this process in action. Interestingly enough, as the government gains more and more power, the majority actually begins to lose its voice and the nation descends into oligarchy and ultimately tyranny.

The only alternative for citizens who want to keep their liberty and property unmolested by majorities or oligarchs is the constitutional republic rule of law system. Our government was intended to be such a system. The Federal Government has a job description laid out clearly and concisely in a few-pages-long document. And, in case we didn’t catch it on the first read through the Constitution, the 10th Amendment reminds us that any powers not given to the Federal Government are reserved to the states or the people. The obvious central concern of the Founding Fathers in including this emphasis was to limit the amount of power that the central government would be able to wield regardless of what man might say.

The constitution was not meant to be read as a collection of mere suggestions for governing. The language is clear: “Congress has the power to…” etc. The literal rigidity of the document itself was described well by Thomas Jefferson when he exclaimed, “Let no more be said of confidence in man, but bind him down from mischief by the chains of the Constitution.” The proverbial chains of the rule of law are meant to bind men down from their wayward tendencies.

Once upon a time in America, citizens and politicians alike had a constant concern for the U.S. Constitution and the Bill of Rights; laws were written and executed according to its mandates. Those were days when government was limited in its function because the politicians knew that their job description was limited indeed by the expressed powers of the Constitution itself. Those were the days before the “elastic clause” had been stretched to the moon and back. And, those were days when the liberties of the citizens were top priority. Today, we would do well to remember that the law of the land ought to rule and that people (politicians or majority opinion) can only act according to that rule of law. If we continue to move simultaneously toward democracy and oligarchy we will be disappointed to see that our future belongs to tyranny. Some day each ignorant citizen will wake up to these realities and will lament, as Woodrow Wilson did years after the creation of the Federal Reserve System, “I have unwillingly ruined my government.”

[Byline Scott Ritsema]

PropagandaMatrix.com
26 May 2005


The worst part of perpetual victimization is that it transforms even the vilest villainy into virtue.

Perpetual victimization is the worst thing that can be done to someone. It means conceptually depriving them of their free will and treating their every action as a reaction.

Perpetual victimization is the ugliest side of the liberal welfare state in all its awful glory, tucking adults into their oversized cribs and graves, soothing them with socialized lullabies and nurturing their frustrations and grudges with passive aggressive appeasements that only create greater helplessness and feed a deeper level of bitterness.

Some inside the beast understand that the public sector thrives on such anxiety. It feeds on failure and this is the goal. They want private enterprise to vanish and the state to be the provider of all services. Most however don’t realize this. They have just been taught to protect their entitlement privileges.

The public sector is ruthlessly competitive in its own way. It’s a Darwinian economic ecosystem and everyone is trying to grab funding for their own programs. Exploiting a crisis, knowing the right political buzzwords and being able to summon a mob of clients or union members to agitate for your program are the keys to success.

The welfare state can’t solve any of the problems that those liberal sociologists thought it could. But the political machines who authorized the spending never wanted the problems solved. It wanted them perpetuated. It wanted plantation voters with no hopes or dreams beyond the next state lottery ticket, who would vote for them to protect their benefits and be weak-minded enough to destroy their communities. And that’s what they got.

Perpetual victimization not only deprives people of choice, it deprives them of even the possibility of choice, of their free will. It insists to them and to anyone who will listen that they are helpless to do anything to improve their lot. Perpetual victimization breeds perpetual entitlement which when combined with a sense of impotence, breeds perpetual war. “Your money or your life” isn’t simply the cry of a mugger or a government official anymore, it’s the clarion call of entitlement, bred and fed by perpetual victimization.

Democracy is not a perfect cure for the ultimate good, or the ultimate evil, to the extent that its leadership is corrupt or void of empathy or committed to political philosophies that harm some in their society, the democracy they run reflects the overall evils of tyranny that come from abuses, atrocities and oppression.

When you have finally bankrupted your country to its very utmost range of debt, when you have finally made it impossible for anyone to earn a living without the intervention of the government, when you have made it illegal for anyone to have a stray unconventional thought, then you will have finally brought the edifice of civilization to the point at which there is nothing left to do but to bring it all crashing down under its own weight… It will finally bring to light what is behind the ideological madness, but by then it will be to late. — an edited entry from David Greenfield’s blog Sultan Knish

It is recommended to watch this following Public Broadcast documentary as it can provide an insightful illustration of the case in point.

Whose Streets?

Lessons to be learned: How A Socialist Venezuela Drowns in Debt


One Million Percent Inflation: Venezuela Removes Five Zeroes from Currency

Venezuelan dictator Nicolás Maduro has removed five zeroes from the country’s bolivar currency amid inflation that is expected to reach one million percent by the end of the year.

The announcement comes two days after the International Monetary Fund predicted that Venezuela’s inflation would reach one million percent by the end of 2018. Maduro said the monetary conversion would spark “great revolutionary changes in the economy, which Venezuela demands.”

Such a measure is indicative of the unprecedented levels of inflation experienced by the bolivar currency, which has lost over 99.999 percent of its value since 2010 as a result of socialist economic policies started under Hugo Chávez that created a highly inefficient, nationalized economy.

At current exchange rates, one U.S. dollar is equivalent to 3.52 million bolivares, leading to a total collapse of people’s savings and livelihoods that has left large swathes of the population in desperate need of economic and humanitarian assistance.

Back in March,  Maduro announced that the government would print money with three fewer zeros, although the plan was never carried out in full. He has also tried to solve the inflation crisis by repeatedly raising the country’s minimum wage, as well as releasing higher denomination bank notes to prevent people from thousands of banknotes to buy simple products.

However, such methods have only forced inflation higher so that the country’s monthly minimum wage is now worth under one dollar a month, while prices of basic products rise astronomically every day to keep up with changing currency prices.

Despite the regime’s open hostility towards the United States, increasing numbers of Venezuelan merchants are now only accepting in U.S. dollars, raising speculation that the country will be forced to revert to the dollar in a post-Maduro economy.

As well as his crumbling domestic economy, the Maduro regime is also unable to pay its enormous debt burden to countries such as Russia and China. Earlier this year, the regime launched its own national cryptocurrency known as the “petro” backed by the country’s extensive natural resources of oil and diamonds, although cryptoanalysts dispute over both the legality and effectiveness of such a me

[Byline Ben Kew]

Breibart (edited)
27 July 2018

See Also

Officials Investigating Pres. Nicolas Maduro In Money Laundering Plot


Flashback

“Maduro has long maintained that Venezuela’s triple-digit inflation and deepening recession are the result of a smear-campaign waged by his rivals. Maduro’s opponents counter that the state of the economy is the result of more than a decade of state controls and government incompetence.”

The Meltdown in Venezuela’s Currency Is Deepening

The black-market rate for the bolivar plunges beyond 8,700 per dollar for first time.

The meltdown in Venezuela’s currency is deepening as a crippling dollar shortage and a threat of oil sanctions take their toll on the economy. The black-market rate for the bolivar traded weaker than 8,700 per dollar for the first time, according to dolartoday.com on Friday, compared with the official rate of around 10 and a more widely used alternative rate of 2,757. That’s creating an illusion for foreigners observing the country’s stock market, which appears to be valued at $2.57 trillion — bigger than Germany’s, France’s, India’s or Canada’s — but is worth only $3 billion based on the black-market rate.

[Srinivasan Sivabalan, with assistance by Nathan Crooks, Ben Bartenstein, and Brendan Walsh, 21 July 2017 via Bloomberg Businessweek]

**************

An attempt by Khmer Rouge leader Pol Pot to form a Communist peasant farming society resulted in the deaths of 25 percent of the country’s population from starvation, overwork and executions

Socialism In Action: Venezuela Has A New “Forced Labor” Law That Can Require People To Work In Fields…

Death Never Truly Comes In a Glamorized Package


Those that would desensitize death do themselves great injustice and grave psychological harm.

Media images and Hollywood portrayals may capture the imagery and horror, but not the breath and scent that accompanies the true reality of it.

Maybe what is seen can’t be unseen, but what is experienced will stay with you forever.

When friends and associates dematerialize before you, turning into red clouds of mist, and human beings instantaneously become piles of steaming meat spread over a small area the moment of truth arrives, and reality slaps us awake from our stupor.

It’s not the sight or the sounds. or the chaos, or even the smell that can stay with you years after the experience. But it is the intrusive perception of how fragile and weak the human body is when it faces a stronger force that yields its total annihilation.

There are those that may never experience the carnage the Angels of Death may bring along with them; personally I believe this may be a good thing. Surely a peaceful death is a blessing, but regardless of how one meets the grim reaper, the outcome is inevitable. So prepare yourselves, for the End is always nearer than we might think.

As for those who are call on others to perform as proxies for such destruction, they seal their own fate and will only reap the deserted land of their hubris and ignorance.