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Much Ado About Nancy Pelosi and China

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China policy seems to be made by, and written about by, adults who were often beaten up on the school playground. They retain the language of bullying, and weaknesses, and standing up, and the fantasy that something would sweep in and save them from losing another days’ lunch money (maybe an aircraft carrier group?) That these people are now in control of the media, if not the House, does nothing good for anyone, especially anyone located on either side of the Taiwan Strait. American seems dumb enough to play at this game; is Beijing also?
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Did White House Advisor Use MIT 'Study' to Take Down Our Twitter Accounts?

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March 1, 2021 a group of MIT students and Phd candidates put together a set of visuals and deep “analysis” takes based on Twitter interactions around Covid. In one section they call out the ring leaders of the “Anti-Maskers Network” - yours truly, Alex Berenson, our own team reality collages El Gato, HOLD2, Kerpen, Gummi Bear, Kyle Lamb, Jordan Schlachtel, Clay Travis and Ethical Skeptic.

From the report:

"The anti-mask network comprises over 2,500 users (9% of the whole network) and is anchored by reporter @AlexBerenson, blogger @EthicalSkeptic, and @justin_hart. Despite being opposed to this community's views, The Atlantic’s @Covid19Tracking project and @GovMikeDeWine of Ohio (among others) are also classified as part of this community because anti-maskers frequently reference them as purveyors of misinformation."

Newly released documents from Alex Berenson’s lawsuit against Twitter reveal private Slack chats in 2021 where Andy Slavitt, who was then a COVID White House advisor, called for Alex’s account to be taken down.
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Afghanistan all over again: Ukraine’s rampant corruption means the Western supply of weapons is likely to eventually backfire

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Viewed from afar, the extent of Ukrainian corruption appears to go far deeper than the recent shift in the narrative might suggest, and it might come back to bite the West as weapons sent to Kiev's forces are disappearing with no account as to their whereabouts.

Just as it was with America’s support for the Mujahideen in the 1980s in fighting a proxy war against the Soviets, its backing of the Ukrainian government may one day reap a whirlwind. And just like its involvement in Afghanistan, decades ago, supporting the ‘enemy of my enemy’ involves dealing with shady characters and whitewashing their wrongdoings.

Following the onset of Russia’s military operation in Ukraine, the media very abruptly ceased its coverage of Ukraine’s seedy political underbelly – with dirty dealings that go all the way to the top. Even America’s sweetheart, Vladimir Zelensky, did not come away unscathed in those reports.

Just months prior to the conflict, mainstream publications, such as The Guardian, were reporting on Zelensky’s offshore connections, as exposed by the Pandora Papers. As detailed in the report, Zelensky, who campaigned for office on an anti-corruption platform, failed to disclose the extent of his offshore assets and his connections to some of the very oligarchs he promised to strip of political influence – and continued to treat everything as ‘business as usual’ once he came to power.
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We Don't Believe You

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David French, maybe National Review’s most reliably wrong scribe, issued this gem in response to the FBI raid on Donald Trump’s residence in Florida.

Imagine thinking federal police agents and lawyers will be “held accountable,” or that presidents are not above the law! Is this an afterschool special? “Let’s wait and see, folks, before we judge the situation. It might be perfectly on the up and up! Have faith in the rule of law and trust the process!”

French, in keeping with the listless residue of Conservative Inc., either can’t or won’t face the reality of postgoodwill America. This starts and ends with politics. If politics is war by other means, subterfuge is part and parcel of every battle and skirmish in that war. We are not required to take a combatant’s claims at face value, blundering ahead like Lucan and Cardigan at Balaclava. The contrary, in fact. Any political statement made today, by any politician or candidate or public official, can be answered thus: “We don’t believe you.” And with this comes a corollary: “We don’t trust you.”

When the Left talks about banning assault rifles, for example, we all know the true ambition of the gun controllers—many of whom are open and honest about their desire to completely eliminate private ownership of firearms in America. Progressives apply the same lens to bans on late-term abortion. But the Trump era, enhanced by the perverse dopamine incentives of social media, took this disbelief and distrust to a new rhetorical level. Witness today’s poisonous political lexicon, one that makes clear that any presumption of good intentions is gone: insurrection, treason, racist, Nazi, fascist, domestic terrorist, MAGAt. These terms are not used to persuade, but to dehumanize and banish. Which of course is nothing new in politics. But it’s worth pointing out the Frenchist folly of claiming that democratic norms are poised to reassert themselves and bring us together once Orange Man is gone.
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New Poll: Americans Unmoved By Jan. 6th Hearings

Despite relentless propaganda and juicy threats of impending arrests, a new poll of Americans shows the January 6th "insurrection" hearings are not shifting any opinions on the event. Also today, US warns starving Africa not to buy food from Russia. And...Biden gets boost in polls! Don't miss today's Liberty Report...
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Welcome to the Third World

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Headline from Politics Insider this morning:

Feds likely obtained ‘pulverizing’ amount of evidence ahead of searching Trump's Mar-a-Lago home, legal experts say.

Pulverizing! Hold that thought.

We’ve reached the stage of American history where everything we see on the news must first be understood as political theater. In other words, the messaging layer of news now almost always dominates the factual narrative, with the latter often reported so unreliably as to be meaningless anyway. Yesterday’s sensational tale of the FBI raiding the Mar-a-Lago home of former president Donald Trump is no different.

As of now, it’s impossible to say if Trump’s alleged offense was great, small, or in between. But this for sure is a huge story, and its hugeness extends in multiple directions, including the extraordinary political risk inherent in the decision to execute the raid. If it backfires, if underlying this action there isn’t a very substantial there there, the Biden administration just took the world’s most reputable police force and turned it into the American version of the Tonton Macoute on national television. We may be looking at simultaneously the dumbest and most inadvertently destructive political gambit in the recent history of this country.

The top story today in the New York Times, bylined by its top White House reporter, speculates this is about “delayed returning” of “15 boxes of material requested by officials with the National Archives.” If that’s true, and it’s not tied to January 6th or some other far more serious offense, then the Justice Department just committed institutional suicide and moved the country many steps closer to once far-out eventualities like national revolt or martial law. This is true no matter what you think of Trump. Despite the early reports of “cheers” in the West Wing, the mood in center-left media has already drifted markedly from the overnight celebration.
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Repression, Terror, Fear: The Government Wants to Silence the Opposition

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Militarized police. Riot squads. Camouflage gear. Black uniforms. Armored vehicles. Mass arrests. Pepper spray. Tear gas. Batons. Strip searches. Surveillance cameras. Kevlar vests. Drones. Lethal weapons. Less-than-lethal weapons unleashed with deadly force. Rubber bullets. Water cannons. Stun grenades. Arrests of journalists. Crowd control tactics. Intimidation tactics. Brutality. Lockdowns.
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Police State? Armed Feds Raid Trump House

Armed Federal agents busted into former President Trump's Florida house last night, ostensibly to seek classified documents that were to be turned in to the National Archives. What's behind this unprecedented move? Also today: Biden sends Ukraine $4 billion...to help with their budget! And finally: media races to claim Biden chalking up victories. Why? Watch today's Liberty Report...
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NATO Learns Nothing and Forgets Nothing

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NATO Secretary-General Jens Stoltenberg recently addressed the Workers Youth League (AUF) summer camp in Utøya, Norway. The AUF is Norway’s largest political youth organization and is affiliated with the Norwegian Labor Party. The AUF summer camp is of course famous for being the scene of the horrific terrorist attack perpetrated by neo-Nazi Anders Breivik in 2011.

Stoltenberg said little of note. Nonetheless, his speech was a remarkable demonstration of how little NATO has learned from the dramatic events of this year. A serious military conflict is taking place on the European continent, a conflict that NATO had played a substantial role in triggering through its unwavering insistence on scooping up as many countries in Europe, Central Asia and beyond into its military system, without any regard for the security concerns of others.

The war in Ukraine is moreover the second major conflict to break out on the European continent within the last 25 years. Both of these conflicts are inextricably linked to two NATO commitments: first, to limitless expansion and, second, to the elimination of Russia’s presence and influence from Europe once and for all. The war in Ukraine was triggered by the first commitment; the 1999 bombing of Yugoslavia by the second.
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Producing New Enemies for No Reason Whatsoever

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A good friend of mine, learning of the impending visit of Speaker of the House of Representatives Nancy Pelosi to Taiwan, recalled Homer’s description of Helen of Troy, “The face that launched a thousand ships and burnt the towers of Ilium.” Well, Nancy ain’t no Helen of Troy, but she might nevertheless be in the business of launching warships and burning cities due to her bizarre interpretation of her foreign policy prerogatives as Speaker.

It is like watching a train wreck developing in slow motion. Witnessing the highly dangerous behavior of the Biden Administration and its acolytes in power like Pelosi, one feels compelled to ask whether the White House and Congress are now setting the stage for the elevation of China to the status of foreign enemy number one? Indeed, if one has been hanging around Washington for the past twenty-five years or so, it was hard to miss the often-surfaced bipartisan contention that China is America’s major over-the-horizon adversary, or even enemy, with its growing economy, its successful geopolitics, and its huge industrious population. I can still recall my shock at hearing Democratic Senator Jim Webb, an honorable and highly intelligent Iraq War critic, telling a conservative gathering in 2015 that the real future threat to the United States would be coming from China.

Fear of China, sometimes dubbed in racist language as the “Yellow Peril,” has a long tradition in the United States and in Europe. In the current context, the US government is certainly apprehensive about where the increasing rapprochement between China and Russia is going, summed up by Secretary of State Tony Blinken as “The deepening strategic partnership between the People’s Republic of China and the Russian Federation and their mutually reinforcing attempts to undercut the rules-based international order run counter to our values and interests.” Ironically enough, that development stems from the inept US diplomacy exemplified by Blinken’s tunnel vision that most recently allowed a negotiable crisis to develop into a full-fledged war over Ukraine.
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