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Antifa in Theory and in Practice

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In recent weeks, a totally disoriented left has been widely exhorted to unify around a masked vanguard calling itself Antifa, for anti-fascist. Hooded and dressed in black, Antifa is essentially a variation of the Black Bloc, familiar for introducing violence into peaceful demonstrations in many countries. Imported from Europe, the label Antifa sounds more political. It also serves the purpose of stigmatizing those it attacks as “fascists”.

Despite its imported European name, Antifa is basically just another example of America’s steady descent into violence.

Historical Pretensions

Antifa first came to prominence from its role in reversing Berkeley’s proud “free speech” tradition by preventing right wing personalities from speaking there. But its moment of glory was its clash with rightwingers in Charlottesville on August 12, largely because Trump commented that there were “good people on both sides”. With exuberant Schadenfreude, commentators grabbed the opportunity to condemn the despised President for his “moral equivalence”, thereby bestowing a moral blessing on Antifa.

Charlottesville served as a successful book launching for Antifa: the Antifascist Handbook, whose author, young academic Mark Bray, is an Antifa in both theory and practice. The book is “really taking off very fast”, rejoiced the publisher, Melville House. It instantly won acclaim from leading mainstream media such as the New York Times,The Guardian and NBC, not hitherto known for rushing to review leftwing books, least of all those by revolutionary anarchists.
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Will Tax Reform Increase or Limit Liberty?

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President Trump and the congressional Republican leadership recently unveiled a tax reform “framework.” The framework has a number of provisions that will lower taxes on middle-class Americans. For example, the framework doubles the standard deduction and increases the child care tax credit. It also eliminates the alternative minimum tax (AMT). Created in the 1960s, the AMT was designed to ensure the “wealthy” did not use “loopholes” to “get out of” paying taxes. Today the AMT is mostly a means to increase taxes on the middle class.
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Longest War in US History Turns 16 Today – Thousands Dead, No End in Sight & It’s Getting Worse

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On this day 16 years ago, less than one month after 9/11, President George W. Bush delivered a televised address from the White House announcing the beginning of the Afghanistan War. “On my orders, the United States military has begun strikes against al Qaeda terrorist training camps and military installations of the Taliban regime in Afghanistan,” he said.
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Trump Will Declare Iran Nuclear Deal ‘Not in the National Interest’

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Officials familiar with the situation say that President Trump is intending to “decertify” the P5+1 nuclear deal with Iran ahead of the October 15 deadline. With no evidence Iran is violating the deal in any way, he is going to instead claim it is just “not in the national interest of the United States” to honor the deal’s terms.

This has much the same effect as falsely claiming Iran to be in violation, as it would put the nuclear deal up for a vote in Congress. Though Congress has long expressed opposition to the deal, it’s likely to be controversial to cancel it years after its implementation for literally no reason.

President Trump is to give a speech surrounding the matter, expected next Thursday, and will lay out a broad strategy of confronting Iran, trying to blame them for all Middle East instability and terrorism. This would both be aimed at justifying the decertification, and setting the stage for another flurry of sanctions and threats to attack Iran.

Officials say that President Trump won’t explicitly urge Congress to abrogate the deal, but will try to use the threat of doing so as leverage to force more onerous terms on Iran. Iran and other parties to the deal have ruled out renegotiating it, noting how difficult it was to get everything agreed to by everyone in the first place.
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Ron Paul: The Revolution At Ten Years

Why was December 16, 2007 such an important date? It was the day when a grassroots group launched a mock Boston Tea Party money bomb in support of Ron Paul's Republican presidential campaign. The fundraiser broke all online records at the time and suddenly everyone was talking about the Ron Paul Revolution. As we approach the tenth anniversary of that fateful day, Ron Paul has written a new book, The Revolution at Ten Years, taking a look back to those times, but more importantly taking a very sober look at where the spirit of the Revolution is today...and where it's going. We discuss the Revolution and the new book in today's Liberty Report. Don't miss the special offer at the end of the program!
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Russia Issues Third Warning Against US Cooperation With Terrorists in Syria

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The Syrian Army was on its way across the Euphrates river to liberate the oil- and gas-fields east of Deir Ezzor city. The US countered the move. It sent a small forces of Arab tribal mercenaries who were earlier allied with the Islamic State (ISIS). These proxy forces came from a northern direction and moved through Islamic State held areas without fighting and casualties up to the walls of Deir Ezzor city.

The Syrian army was about to win the race when it started to cross the Euphrates. But it suddenly was surprised by a large al-Qaeda attack in southern Idleb province. That area had been quiet for months. 29 Russian troops who were supervising a deescalation zone there were nearly encircled by al-Qaeda forces. They only escape after an emergency relief operation had cut through al-Qaeda lines. The Russian Ministry of Defense accused the US of having communicated the position of the Russian platoon to al-Qaeda.

Shortly thereafter a Russian general, visiting Deir Ezzor city to supervise the Euphrates bridge crossing, came under extremely well aimed mortar fire by the Islamic State. The general and two other high ranking officers were killed. During years of fighting around Deir Ezzor ISIS had never shown the capability for such a precise strike. Someone must have communicated with the terrorists and transferred the exact position of the local headquarter, as well as the time of the Russian general's visit.

A week later a concentrated ISIS attack on the main supply road between Palmyra and Deir Ezzor was attacked by a large number of ISIS forces. It is trying to retake al-Suknah in the middle between the two cities. The Russian Defense Ministry claims that the attacking ISIS forces came from southern areas of al-Tanf near the Jordan border which are under control of US forces. Should ISIS take al-Suknah the Syrian-Russian contingent in Deir Ezzor would gain be cutoff.
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Britain Moves To Criminalize Reading Extremist Material On The Internet

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For years, civil libertarians have warned that Great Britain has been in a free fall from the criminalization of speech to the expansion of the surveillance state. Now the government is pursuing a law that would make the repeated viewing of extremist Internet sites a crime punishable to up to 15 years in prison.  It appears that the government is not satiated by their ever-expanding criminalization of speech.They now want to criminalize even viewing sites on the Internet.  As always, officials are basically telling the public to “trust us, we’re the government.” UK home secretary Amber Rudd is pushing the criminalization of reading as part of her anti-radicalization campaign . . . which turns out to be an anti-civil liberties campaign.


We have previously discussed the alarming rollback on free speech rights in the West, particularly in France (here and here and here and here and here and here) and England ( here and here and here and here and here and here and here and here and here and here). Even the Home Secretary has been accused of hate speech for criticizing immigrant workers.

Prime Minister Theresa May has previously called for greater government control of the Internet. Now, the government not only would make reading material on the Internet a crime, but would not necessarily tell you what sites will be deemed the ultimate click bait.  Rudd told a Conservative Party conference that she wants to crackdown on people “who view despicable terrorist content online, including jihadi websites, far-right propaganda and bomb-making instructions.” So sites deemed “far-right propaganda” (but not far-left propaganda) could lead to your arrest — leaving the government with a sweeping and ambiguous mandate.
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USA LIBERTY Act - Making Spying On You Permanent

With Section 702 of the FISA Amendments Act set to expire at the end of the year, Congress is scurrying to find a way to preserve the post-9/11 authority for the government to conduct mass surveillance of US citizens' communications. They have come up with another Orwellian bill, the USA LIBERTY Act, which would fix none of Fourth Amendment problems of the original bill but would make the original unconstitutional bill permanent. So "Liberty" to Congress is a mass surveillance state. The Cato Institute's Patrick Eddington joins today's Liberty Report to discuss 702 and its possible replacement bill...
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Cuba's 'Sonic Weapons' - Real Or Imagined?

The Trump Administration has just expelled several Cuban diplomats in Washington and suspended visas for Cubans wishing to visit the United States over reports that US embassy personnel in Havana have been attacked by some kind of mystery "sonic weapon" that is leaving them everything from dizziness and hearing loss to brain damage. Are the Cubans really attacking American diplomats? Could the maladies be caused by some kind of virus? And who benefits by pushing the story? Our take in today's Liberty Report...
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Trump and 'His Generals' on Collision Course Over Iran

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With President Trump again facing the requirement to certify whether Iran is complying with the P5+1 nuclear deal this month, it looks like a major clash may be brewing between the president and the neocons on one side, and the military generals he openly embraces in his Administration on the other. What might normally be a fairly automatic and objective process is looking more like a clash of the titans for the Administration. Who will blink?
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