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Digital Trails: How the FBI Is Identifying, Tracking and Rounding Up Dissidents

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Databit by databit, we are building our own electronic concentration camps.

With every new smart piece of smart technology we acquire, every new app we download, every new photo or post we share online, we are making it that much easier for the government and its corporate partners to identify, track and eventually round us up.

Saint or sinner, it doesn’t matter because we’re all being swept up into a massive digital data dragnet that does not distinguish between those who are innocent of wrongdoing, suspects, or criminals.

This is what it means to live in a suspect society.

The government’s efforts to round up those who took part in the Capitol riots shows exactly how vulnerable we all are to the menace of a surveillance state that aspires to a God-like awareness of our lives.

Relying on selfies, social media posts, location data, geotagged photos, facial recognition, surveillance cameras and crowdsourcing, government agents are compiling a massive data trove on anyone and everyone who may have been anywhere in the vicinity of the Capitol on January 6, 2021.
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Ten years on, the US still promotes failed regime-change policy in Syria

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The US has only one objective in Syria—regime change. The fact that it has been unable to achieve this after ten years of trying does not appear to deter the Biden administration from embracing failure.

Back in 2001, former General Wesley Clark described a memorandum issued by then-Secretary of Defense Donald Rumsfeld which outlined a plan, as General Clark described it, on “how we’re going to take out seven countries in five years, starting with Iraq, and then Syria, Lebanon, Libya, Somalia, Sudan and, finishing off, Iran.”

Twenty years later, the world bears witness to the detritus of that vision. The US invaded Iraq, a seminal moment which saw a nation which espouses adherence to the so-called “rules-based world order” violate every rule in pursuit of the God-like power to dictate by force of arms the life and death of not only nations, but the millions of people who comprise the human element of what to the architects of these policies are merely lines on a map. Libya, Somalia, and Sudan have all become failed states because of US-led interventions. And, after ten years of incessant fighting, Syria serves as the front line of an ongoing US plan to take down that nation, together with Lebanon and Iran.

It was not supposed to be this hard. While Donald Rumsfeld and his band of merry warmongers avoided the temptation to follow-up the relatively easy defeat of Saddam Hussein’s Iraq by continuing to push into Syria, the Bush administration continued its regime-change fantasy by forming the “Iran Syria Policy and Operations Group” (ISOG), an interagency organization co-chaired by Liz Cheney (daughter of former Vice President Dick Cheney) and Elliott Abrams (of Iran-Contra infamy) dedicated to toppling the governments of both nations.
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Blockbuster! Washington Post Admits Using Fake Trump Quotes!

Two months after reporting on former President Donald Trump "pressuring" Georgia election officials to find fraud in the process - long after that narrative had been accepted as fact - the Washington Post yesterday announced that the quotes were made up. Who made them up and why? Shouldn't the Post have investigated thoroughly? Is there no pushback when the mainstream media continues to print biased falsehoods? Also today, one school district in Texas said a strong "NO!" to shutting down and online instruction only. And they thrived! Watch today's Liberty Report...
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She Wouldn't Wear A Mask...Galveston Police Broke Her Foot

A 65 year old Galveston woman found herself tackled, handcuffed, arrested, and with a broken foot after she refused to leave a local Bank of America branch without her money. The bank demanded she put on a mask, she refused, so they called in the police. Property rights? Also today, first anniversary of the Covid lockdowns. Success or tragic failure? Watch today's Liberty Report...
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Advocates of Economic Sanctions Mirror the Morality of al Qaeda

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Efforts to restore American and Iranian compliance with the 2015 nuclear deal—formally called the Joint Comprehensive Plan of Action (JCPOA)—are at an impasse.

President Biden has declared there will be no relaxing of smothering economic sanctions on Iran unless the country first returns to full compliance with the deal. Iran, which began exceeding nuclear enrichment thresholds in response to America’s total withdrawal from the deal under President Trump, wants the United States to begin easing sanctions first.

As that chess game continues, there’s something missing from op-ed pages, network news studios and the House and Senate chambers: a fundamental debate about the morality of economic sanctions.

If we reduce economic sanctions to a general characterization that encompasses both ends and means, we arrive at a truth that is as damning as it is incontrovertible:
Economic sanctions intentionally inflict suffering on civilian populations to force a change in their governments’ policies
If that has a familiar ring, perhaps it’s because “the intentional use of violence against civilians in order to obtain political aims” is one definition of terrorism.
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The One-Year Anniversary of Lockdowns

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One year ago, between March 13 and 16, 2020, began what most of us would agree were the most difficult days of our lives. We thought our rights and liberties were more or less secure or could only be hobbled on the margin. We took certain things for granted, such as that our governments would not – and could not – order us to stay home, close most businesses and schools, shut down travel, padlock churches and concert halls, cancel events, much less lock down society in the name of virus control. 

All that changed with a federal document issued March 13, 2020, and declassified three months later. It was the lockdown guidelines. Over the following days, governors panicked. People panicked. Bureaucrats were unleashed. All the powers of the state at all levels of society were deployed not on the virus but on the people, which is all that governments can really control. The lockdowns were nearly universal, implemented around the world but for a few holdouts, one of which was in the US (South Dakota). 

A year later, most states are opening up while those still clinging to lockdowns can no longer control people. Regardless of warnings from the top that going back to normal life is too dangerous, most people have decided to be done with the whole dreadful episode.
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Is Biden Holding America Hostage Until ‘Independence’ Day?

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Last week President Biden addressed the nation on the first anniversary of the coronavirus being declared a “pandemic.” It was a disturbing speech, warning us that the “hopeful spring” will only emerge “from a dark winter” if all Americans “stick with the rules.” Whose rules? His rules.
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One year into ‘15 days to flatten the curve’, why are we still tolerating authoritarian government clampdowns on our daily lives?

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In the 12 months since states first started ordering citizens to stay at home under the pretext of Covid, we’ve come a long way. Particularly in our understanding of how illiberal our politicians can be and how supine we are.

One year ago, at noon on Tuesday, March 17, France went into total lockdown for the first time. Until then, Covid-19 was something of which we were faintly aware – background noise in our daily lives that was mostly relegated to Wuhan, China. But we all had that one moment when we realized that it was about to hit home hard. 

In my case, that instant came two days before the lockdown, when the local outdoor pool posted a sign on the door drastically reducing the total user capacity to just 100, right before closing entirely the following day. On March 16, French President Emmanuel Macron addressed the nation to announce what he described as temporary measures, to be implemented for at least 15 days. Only essential trips outside the home would be allowed. Period. Case closed. All in the interests of protecting the French healthcare system, the long-suffering victim of perennial government cutbacks, from being forced onto life-support as it tends to be nearly every year during flu season.

The government’s drastic actions successfully convinced many citizens at the outset of the lockdown that the coronavirus must be on par with the plague. Macron opened the first few paragraphs of his national address with the phrase, “We are at war.” Yet even the government didn’t really know what it was dealing with at that point or how to handle it.
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The Sovietization of the American Press

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I collect Soviet newspapers. Years ago, I used to travel to Moscow’s Izmailovsky flea market every few weeks, hooking up with a dealer who crisscrossed the country digging up front pages from the Cold War era. I have Izvestia’s celebration of Gagarin’s flight, a Pravda account of a 1938 show trial, even an ancient copy of Ogonyek with Trotsky on the cover that someone must have taken a risk to keep.

These relics, with dramatic block fonts and red highlights, are cool pieces of history. Not so cool: the writing! Soviet newspapers were wrought with such anvil shamelessness that it’s difficult to imagine anyone ever read them without laughing. A good Soviet could write almost any Pravda headline in advance. What else but “A Mighty Demonstration of the Union of the Party and the People” fit the day after Supreme Soviet elections? What news could come from the Spanish civil war but “Success of the Republican Fleet?” Who could earn an obit headline but a “Faithful Son of the Party”?

Reality in Soviet news was 100% binary, with all people either heroes or villains, and the villains all in league with one another (an SR was no better than a fascist or a “Right-Trotskyite Bandit,” a kind of proto-horseshoe theory). Other ideas were not represented, except to be attacked and deconstructed.
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