- Ralph Raico On Rothbard, Hayek and Ayn Rand May 19, 2013 Robert Wenzel
- More on Bitcoin 2013 (Part 4) May 19, 2013 Robert Wenzel
- Just Remember.... May 19, 2013 Robert Wenzel
- More from Bitcoin 2013 Conference (Part 3) May 19, 2013 Robert Wenzel
- Reporting from Bitcoin Conference 2013 (Part 2) May 19, 2013 Robert Wenzel
- It's Not Pretty: The EuroZone Economies May 19, 2013 Robert Wenzel
- Krugman's Faulty Understanding of Austerity May 19, 2013 Chris Rossini
- Adam Koekesh Arrested in Philadelphia May 19, 2013 Robert Wenzel
- Bill Kristol's Empire of Death May 18, 2013 Robert Wenzel
- Snarky Comment on Gold from Former Ron Paul Staffer May 18, 2013 Robert Wenzel
- Gun Control Is Impossible May 20, 2013But only libertarians understand why. Article by Mark Crovelli.
- Put on Death Row by a Lying Cop May 20, 2013Debra Milke is to be freed after more than 20 years. Article by Paul Huebl.
- I Found Someone Who's Wrong 100% of the Time May 20, 2013He lives in DC, of course. Article by Tom Woods.
- The Terror Cartel Strikes in Idaho May 20, 2013Will Grigg on those protecting us from freedom and justice.
- Our Rulers Are Nutty as Well as Evil May 20, 2013The Mogambo Guru on Keynesian phrenology.
- Invade the World May 20, 2013Murray Rothbard was right about the future of US foreign policy, says Charles Burris.
- It Feels Like 2006 All Over Again May 20, 2013But this time it will be different. It will be worse, says Peter Schiff.
- The Feds Are Worried About the Dollar May 20, 2013As well they should, says Paul Craig Roberts.
- What's Ahead for Bitcoin? May 20, 2013Bob Wenzel reports from the hot Bitcoin 2013 conference in San Jose.
- Tune In, Turn On, Opt Out May 20, 2013Charles Hugh Smith on what happens to the ruling elite when the tax and debt serfs escape.
- Gun Control Is Impossible May 20, 2013
- Thomas Sowell on Why the Intelligencia Pay No Price for Being Wrong May 18, 2013 Christopher Westley
- Was Marx Right? May 18, 2013 Hunter Lewis
- Fed Bank President Targets Unemployment Targeters May 17, 2013 Joseph Salerno
- David Stockman Seminar in NYC May 17, 2013 Joseph Salerno
- William H. Peterson May 16, 2013 Mark Thornton
- Paul’s World May 16, 2013 Peter G. Klein
- Bring on the Helicopter Money–and Gut the Fed May 15, 2013 Joseph Salerno
- A Keynesian Monetary Politburo Member Speaks May 15, 2013 Thomas DiLorenzo
- The Greatest Understatement in the History of Economics May 14, 2013 Joseph Salerno
- Burt Blumert May 14, 2013 Mark Thornton
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Monthly Archives: March 2012
A great article:
by Anthony Wile
The Daily Bell
We track dominant social themes here at the Daily Bell, and the spectacular implosion of the “Stop Kony 2012″ campaign is a further example of how these memes are disintegrating under the pressure of what we call the Internet Reformation.We commented on this in this past week, in “Kony 2012 Debunking Shows How Far Alternative Media Has Come.” But we wrote that article before the spectacular implosion of the “artistic creator” of the video, who apparently had a nervous breakdown due to the reception of the video and was sent to a psychiatric facility.
I am not one to rejoice at this sort of thing. In fact, it is a personal and familial tragedy for the person involved, obviously. On the other hand, the video itself was fairly despicable, in my view, and obviously and evidently the intention was to create a power elite meme.
This is not idle speculation. Alternative media reports may have firmly fixed the producers of the video, “Invisible Children,” within the larger framework of the State Department and its infamous AYM sponsorship.
The “youth movements” that the power elite has assiduously cultivated over the past decade or more are responsible for destabilizing numerous countries around the world now.
The Invisible Children non-profit seems to me to be firmly entrenched within this Intel paradigm. No doubt, if their funding stream is analyzed closely it will emerge that various strands of support lead back to elite foundations and personalities.
What was the meme? It was to create a groundswell of support for a kind of neo-colonialist attack on Africa. Some of what is intended has been clearly elucidated now by alternative media and some has not.
The alternative media, as we have pointed out previously, has been superb in rising up to denounce the video and the intentions behind it. Alex Jones led the charge with a hundred – maybe a thousand – websites and blog-sites all focusing on the true disinformation inherent in the “Invisible Children” effort.
Many facets of what the video was intended to do have been analyzed by now. But let me try to sum up in a few sentences:
The video may be part of a larger power elite plan to take control of the Middle East and Africa more directly. In the Middle East and upper Africa, as we’ve reported many times, the power elite has destroyed a number of secular regimes (Egypt, Tunisia and Libya) on their way to installing what seems to be a region-wide Caliphate.
The idea seems to be to create a wider war on terror by building a Muslim-oriented Caliphate using the Trojan Horse of the Muslim Brotherhood, which is apparently CIA connected at the very top. The Kony video is obviously aimed at providing a wider justification for more African military involvement by the West.
All the above actions are CONTROL oriented. There are other reasons, as well, having to do with gold, with the world’s next reserve currency and, of course, natural resources. Some of these we’ve pointed out in the past. But the larger issue is the one-world government that elites are continuing to pursue.
The moves in the Middle East and Africa and even the Kony video itself needs to be looked at within that context. And seen in that context, I think we can come to certain conclusions.
The main conclusion we can come to is that the elites’ dominant social themes are really in a kind of free fall now. The elites RELY on these dominant social themes to organize society and instill belief systems that allow for the gradual implementation of what has been called a New World Order.
The idea of a consolidated global government run by the current elite – and at the top it is apparently composed of dynastic banking families – ought to be scary to anyone. Power corrupts and absolute power corrupts absolutely. A one-world government cannot be anything other than tyrannical.
But these dominant social themes, having worked so well in 20th century and even earlier, have certainly been undermined by the availability of ‘Net information. One by one, they are toppling, or at least losing credibility. I’d like to think we’ve contributed to this trend.
Whether it’s global warming, the so-called “war on terror” or various scarcity memes having to do with food, water and oil, people are a lot less likely to take what they read and hear from the mainstream media at face value anymore. There are too many other outlets via the Internet.
This is why the powers-that-be have tried to crack down on Internet information via such ploys as copyright enforcement. It’s exactly the same tactic that was used after the Gutenberg Press began to change the way people thought about the Way the World Worked.
As we’ve often pointed out, this is a big problem for the power elite. Lacking the ability to propagandize the masses, the elites have turned to more brutal techniques. They are trying to accomplish via the brute force of law and regulation what they cannot accomplish via the propagation of memes.
Even worse, the elites have increasingly turned toward and encouraged, in my mind, economic disintegration. The idea is to make people so miserable and insecure via “austerity” and various wars that we will simply cry out for “order” at any cost. At that point, world government will start to become a reality.
But wait just a minute. As far as I’m concerned, however, “Kony 2012″ and the pushback it has received mark a kind of watershed moment for the Internet. There have been several I recall.
One was when Dan Rather was fired after the Internet exposed the phony documents he was trying to use to attack then US President George Bush. I have no admiration for Bush, who was a deliberate war-monger, but Rather was rightfully caught.
Another watershed moment, in my view, was the “ClimateGate” exposure of emails that showed fairly convincingly that global warming was a contrived hoax. The “movement” has never recovered from this setback.
And another, very recent, watershed moment has been the unraveling of the case against Dr. Andrew Wakefield who first identified a potential link between autism and the MMR vaccine. One of Dr. Wakefield’s colleagues just had disbarment from the British medical establishment reversed.
But the rapid and seemingly complete collapse of the Kony gambit must rank as the most astonishing yet in my view. The anger of seemingly the entire alternative media community is palpable and the “nervous breakdown” of the man who made the video when see in this light is perhaps no accident. They’re under enormous pressure.
The elites will continue to do what they do. They’ve been doing it for thousands of years apparently, and the exposure of their thematic mechanisms won’t stop them from trying to achieve their goals.
But above all the elites seek justification for what they do, and the Internet regularly strips these self-serving and manufactured justifications away from them.
This leaves the brutality of planned depressions, manufactured wars and unjust laws supported by crony favoritism. How long they can manufacture consent via fear rather than conviction remains to be seen.
There is a reason that the elites counted on the dissemination of their memes in the 20th century. There are a lot fewer of them than us.
The power of ideas:
DIY: End the Police State
Posted on March 20, 2012.
Do a simple thought experiment: what’s the difference between “theft” and “taxes?” Between “a fine” and “a ransom note?” Between “arresting” and “kidnapping?” Nothing. The person aggressed-upon was no-less harmed.
It doesn’t matter where the aggressor works or what attire they wear – individuals are responsible for their actions. Badges don’t grant extra rights. The sooner we each internalize that, the sooner things change for the better. But at the end of the day, the problem isn’t the police – the problem is an idea.
To stop having Oscar Grant’s and Kelly Thomas’s – we each just need to replace a bad idea – that some individuals have the right to coerce others – with a better idea – that no individual has the right to coerce others.
Yes, there are “bad cops” – but that doesn’t mean all police are bad. True, they’re “bad” in the sense that they steal your money to “serve you” – but so does everyone else who works for a government agency or as a government contractor. (Perhaps that includes your mom, who teaches at the local middle school, or your best friend who got a research grant from the CDC, or your cousin in the Marines. Ooh-rah!) I focus on policing because its the enforcement arm of a criminal organization, which exists due to an idea. A bad idea. And fortunately bad ideas can always be discarded for better ideas.
Individuals working in law enforcement might mean well, but their good-intentions are always overshadowed by the perverse incentives that say it’s ok for some to use force. One can’t fix a monopoly that claims a “legitimate” right to use force with more funding or through calls for greater transparency.
To truly change things we must each realize that no one has authority over us. Once you treat those with badges the same you would me or a neighbor the systematic violence ceases. Such an idea has far-reaching implications.
Many today have been led to believe the idea that some strangers in suits in an old marshland have the right to dictate every minutia of their lives. And that some strangers more-local can do the same at an even more microscopic level. And that other strangers – friends of the first groups – have the “legitimate” right to use force if they’re not obeyed. Huh!?
Shed the idea that “just doing my job” is acceptable. It’s not. The actor themselves is responsible for their actions, not text on paper, not some stranger far-away who says certain actions permissible, and not some tyrant more local who ordered the same. When individuals purposefully hurt others, as did Charles I. Newton, employee of the NH Drug Task Force and Robert Roche, employee of the Oakland Police Department, they should be outed and held accountable.
But don’t stop there, don’t be content with calling-out individual aggressors. Instead, be proactive. Delegitimize their violent institution by choosing not to grant them authority. See through the charade and think for yourself. Ideas have consequences!
This article from Simon Black is another illustration of how the “myth of external authority” can have disastrous consequences:
March 19, 2012
Here’s the scene. It was an overcast day in southern England last March. That is to say, a normal day in southern England.
Attempting to retrieve something that had blown into the water, 41-year old Simon Burgess slipped and fell into a 3 1/2 foot-deep pond. He then suffered a seizure. His body, lying motionless and face down in the water, was spotted at 12:15pm by a witness who immediately called 999 emergency services (like 911).
Within five minutes, emergency crews began arriving. Then more. Then more. 36-minutes after the initial phone call, no fewer than 25 emergency workers were at the scene. They brought out a state of the art emergency medical tent, resuscitation equipment, several fire engines, ambulances, and specialty dive gear.
For more than thirty minutes, emergency crews set up a complex operations center. Fire fighters positioned their trucks. Police officers cordoned off the area for crowd control. Water Support Unit officers donned protective gear and checked the pond for underwater hazards.
Yet with all of this commotion, nobody bothered to fetch Mr. Burgess. For 36-minutes, he floated in the center of the pond, face down, while dozens of first responders scurried about with their ‘make work’ projects.
Why? Because they hadn’t been ‘trained and certified’ by their various government agencies to enter water that was more than ankle deep. According to the UK’s Daily Mail,
“When a policeman decided to go in anyway, he was ordered not to. A paramedic was also told not to enter the water because he didn’t have the right ‚”protective” clothing and might be in breach of the Personal Protective Equipment at Work Regulations 1992.”
And so, the emergency crews stood by waiting until a specialty team arrived, donned protective gear, and waded into the waist-deep water (at maximum depth) to retrieve Mr. Burgess. Needless to say, doctors formally pronounced him dead by the time his body arrived to the hospital, roughly 90-minutes after he fell in the lake.
Following public outcry over how Britain’s impotent bureaucracy could manage to cost a man his life, the government held a formal investigation into the matter a few weeks ago. As expected, public service workers and politicians closed ranks, defending their decisions on the ground and claiming that they were only ‘doing their jobs’ and following the rules.
It’s certainly not the first time this has happened. Last year, a 14-year old girl in London collapsed while in the middle of a cross-country competition. It took emergency workers 30-minutes to arrive, at which point they refused to carry her body through the muddy park to the ambulance as it was against health and safety regulations.
Then there was the case of 44-year old Alison Hume in Scotland; she had fallen into a mine shaft and was trapped there for six hours suffering from hypothermia because emergency service supervisors claimed that using their winch to retrieve her would be a violation of regulations.
Or the case of 10-year old Jordon Lyon of northern England, who was drowning in a local pond when two police officers arrived to the scene… and did absolutely nothing because they weren’t properly trained. Apparently you have to be trained by the government in order to jump in the water and save a drowning child.
The public outcry in each of these (and similar) incidents more often than not results in a call for more regulation. This is such a typical government reaction– the solution to a problem created by too much regulation is more regulation. It’s the only thing these people know how to do.
These examples focus on the United Kingdom… but the issue exists around the world. Common sense and human decency are becoming increasingly sidelined to what the regulation says. Any good people in the rank and file are being crushed by an amoral bureaucracy.
In the United States, the government has gone so far as to state that it has no obligation to provide police protection or emergency services; courts have routinely upheld that “a government and its agents are under no general duty to provide public services, such as police protection, to any particular individual citizen…” (Warren v. District of Columbia)
It’s all a stark reminder that government is a disease masquerading as its own cure… and that, ultimately, we only have ourselves to rely on. Trust me, this is good news. The sooner people wake up to how horrifically incompetent and amoral their governments are, the better off we’ll all be.
Article by Jon Matonis at Forbes:
Could Bitcoin Become the Currency of System D?
If zeros and ones are outlawed, only outlaws will use zeros and ones.
Cryptography shall always have a place in securing our digital future and most especially in securing our digital value. Advanced public-key encryption for the masses cannot be eliminated nor denied — the genie is out of the bottle and mankind is the better for it. The unintended consequence of regulating or restricting decentralized cryptocurrencies such as bitcoin is that their use as a currency will have been ‘recognized’ officially and that usage will be driven largely underground.
However, underground may not be so bad anymore as Robert Neuwirth points out in his brilliant Foreign Policy article, “The Shadow Superpower”. If aggregated, this $10 trillion global black market is the world’s second largest economy after the United States and it is also the world’s fastest growing economy. The OECD (Organisation for Economic Co-operation and Development) projects that, by the year 2020, fully two-thirds of the world’s workers will inhabit this shadow economy, or “System D.” As Neuwirth elaborates, it refers to the entire untaxed, unlicensed, and unregulated cash-based economy:
System D is a slang phrase pirated from French-speaking Africa and the Caribbean. The French have a word that they often use to describe particularly effective and motivated people. They call them débrouillards. To say a man is a débrouillard is to tell people how resourceful and ingenious he is. The former French colonies have sculpted this word to their own social and economic reality. They say that inventive, self-starting, entrepreneurial merchants who are doing business on their own, without registering or being regulated by the bureaucracy and, for the most part, without paying taxes, are part of “l’economie de la débrouillardise.” Or, sweetened for street use, “Systeme D.” This essentially translates as the ingenuity economy, the economy of improvisation and self-reliance, the do-it-yourself, or DIY, economy.
Enter bitcoin. All kind of vibrant economic activity is occurring in this informal economy, which in some regions is between 20-60% of GDP or more, and every economy needs a currency. Essentially, bitcoin is the ‘System D’ of currencies — global, decentralized, and non-state sanctioned. It is still early days but as bitcoin bypasses traditional banking and financial institutions, it is a currency off-the-grid just as System D. To deny the existence of System D is to deny the fact that economic participants find ways to survive even during prolonged times of hardship. According to Neuwirth “it asserts an important truth: what happens in all the unregistered markets and roadside kiosks of the world is not simply haphazard. It is a product of intelligence, resilience, self-organization and group solidarity.”
It is inconceivable to think of those in under-developed countries and the developed economies of the eurozone coping without System D activity given the recurring recessions that are exacerbated by the violent central bank-induced business cycles. Despite increasing consumption taxes like VAT (value-added tax), the informal economy can still provide relief through various markets and bazaars. Americans too will need black markets to survive. System D represents the future.
What do you think?
“Waving the constitution around as a symbol of your liberty is like a dog who has learned to carry his leash in his mouth.” -Butler Shaffer