Newspeak In The 21st Century: How To Become A Model Citizen In The New Era Of Domestic Warfare

Newspeak In The 21st Century: How To Become A Model Citizen In The New Era Of Domestic Warfare

Authored by Cnythia Chung via ‘Through A Glass Darkly’ Substack,

Disagreement has become an extremely sensitive issue lately; it was once thought that debate was an essential component to a strong and healthy democracy, however, we are now told that it is extremely dangerous, in fact, it may soon be categorised as a form of domestic terrorism. [This article was originally published January 27, 2021.]

As early as mid-Nov 2020, Biden was already discussing the need to pass further laws against domestic terrorism. This is interesting since under the 2001 Patriot Act (which was meant to be a temporary enforcement in reaction to 9/11, however, is still in place 19 years later), domestic terrorism is already defined as;

“activities that (A) involve acts dangerous to human life that are a violation of the criminal laws of the U.S. or of any state; (B) appear to be intended (i) to intimidate or coerce a civilian population; (ii) to influence the policy of government by intimidation or coercion; or (iii) to affect the conduct of a government by mass destruction, assassination, or kidnapping; and (C) occur primarily within the territorial jurisdiction of the U.S.”

So, the question begs, what else needs to be added to the Patriot Act, which was recognised at the time of its enforcement as something that should only be temporary since it was understood that it infringed upon civil liberties? Come to think of it, why is the Patriot Act still in place, which allows for the indefinite continuation of human rights violations such as warrantless wiretapping; illegal torture, kidnapping, and detention; mass surveillance; government secrecy; Real ID; no-fly list; political spying; abuse of material witness statutes; and attacks on academic freedom?

As Glenn Greenwald wrote in his formidable paper The New Domestic War on Terror is Coming, “what needs to be criminalized that is not already a crime?”, keeping in mind that as of June 2020, the United States has the highest prisoner rate in the world, followed by El Salvador, Turkmenistan, Thailand and Palau.

Well, the answer is apparently simple and as always for our own good. We have come to a point in time where the enemy is not some radicalized ideology, it is not some foreign despot, it is not even the threat of war (whether it be economic, cyber or nuclear), but rather it is ourselves. We, the people, are the new enemies of the State.

You may protest “Not I! I am a model citizen! I pay my taxes on time, I am never late or call in sick for work, I make sure to be up-to-date with the newest ‘woke’ revelations and I don’t engage with anything outside of the mainstream matrix during my free-time.”

People such as yourself think, that when the Biden Administration is calling for tougher laws against domestic terrorism, that it is obviously meant for the ‘other guy,’ those uneducated bigots who are screaming at the top of their lungs “Treason!” and inciting what we are told to be forms of ‘insurrection,’ all in the name of the archaic ideas of ‘patriotism’ and the ‘U.S. Constitution.’

You, unlike so many others, have no problem recognising that the U.S. Constitution is actually part of the problem, that by the standards used today, the U.S. Constitution is itself responsible for ‘inciting violence’ and thus guilty of domestic terrorism, and thus needs to be revoked.

But you see… that’s just not good enough.

Though you are well on your way to becoming a model citizen in the 21st century, you still have a little ways to go. It is for this reason that a guide to 21st century Newspeak has been recently released to make sure that well-intentioned citizens like yourself are fully informed of what is required of you in terms of appropriate behaviour, as well as appropriate thoughts, and though this will take a little more time, appropriate instincts.

21st Century Newspeak

The first alteration that will need to take place is freedom of thought. It has been shown through peer-review studies that individual thoughts are susceptible to forming erroneous beliefs and can lead to dangerous behaviours such as refusal to integrate into a community standard.

Once an individual refuses to integrate into its designated community, it is only a matter of time before this individual shows opposition and even antagonism towards said community. Thus failure to integrate is one of the first signs that an individual is on the path to becoming a domestic terrorist.

Because the individual mind is flawed, it can no longer be trusted to be the standard of its own judgement of what is right and wrong. It is for this reason that we are introducing groupthink. This concept is not new, however, the difference is from now on the individual’s environment will only be allowed to reciprocate the values of groupthink, and all other thoughts outside of groupthink are to be banned and punishable under the new laws.

Even if thoughts outside of groupthink appear as harmless to the collective, they are not, for any thought that is not groupthink threatens to lead to a different outcome than that intended by groupthink and thus is a threat to the security of the collective.

In order to ensure commitment to groupthink, it will be mandatory that every individual engage in at least 2 minutes of Hate every hour throughout the day, every day. This can be achieved either by watching 2 minutes of Hate news, or by engaging in a public 2 minutes of Hate with a colleague, a friend or family member via social media.

It is imperative that an individual watch the 15 minute morning and evening “What to Hate” news provided by the Ministry of Truth (or Minitrue), in order to be the most up-to-date with what are the ongoing and new subjects of Hate, and what were previous subjects of Hate which are no longer deemed to be subjects of Hate.

It is most important that an individual never refer to a former subject of Hate as such. Any present subject of Hate must be seen as having always been a subject of Hate and any former subject of Hate must be seen as having never been a subject of Hate.

This may appear as an impossible task, but we assure you it is entirely possible with the use of doublethink, which many of you have already been practising. Doublethink requires that one be both conscious and unconscious of the fact that they are telling deliberate lies while genuinely believing them; to deny the existence of objective reality and all the while to take account of the reality which one denies. This makes up a part of our new Party slogan: FREEDOM IS SLAVERY.

Those who excel the most in doublethink will receive the highest stations within our newly organised community, as safe-guards against the renegade, the domestic terrorist.

Another alteration that will need to occur is how we think and refer to the past and the future. With the newly enforced groupthink, the present is what groupthink dictates it to be, which is subject to change, however, must be regarded as having always been.

The past is what the present dictates it to be, if it were not, it could challenge the basis for the present. Thus to preserve the present, the past must serve the present, only justifying why we Hate what we presently Hate and why we Love what we presently Love and can do nothing to contradict these Party lines. There will be permitted no records of an alternative past, there will be no way to prove that the past was ever different from what the present dictates it to be, the only threat to this narrative is the record of the individual mind, and once this ceases to be there will only be the Minitrue record as the recorder of past Truth.

In effect, the model citizen will perceive the past as dead and the future as unimaginable. The future is unimaginable because it is impossible to think of an alternative to the present, in fact, the mere act of thinking of an alternative to the present is considered a challenge to the status quo of the present, and thus is a challenge to groupthink, and thus is a form of domestic terrorism, which we will call from now on thoughtcrime.

Thoughtcrime is essentially any thought pertaining to memory, judgement of right and wrong, thoughts of an alternative reality, and self-reflection, which are now all deemed forms of thoughtcrime. If an individual is to engage in any of these sorts of thoughts, it is only a matter of time before they will come into conflict with groupthink and the Party line, thus private thoughts are banned and punished under the new laws.

It may seem an impossible task at first not to engage in private thoughts, but again, we assure you it is entirely possible using crimestopCrimestop is the practice of not grasping analogies, failing to perceive logical errors, misunderstanding the simplest arguments, of being bored or repelled by any train of thought which is capable of leading in a heretical direction. Crimestop is essentially, protective stupidity.

It is imperative that one practice crimestop during any interaction with another individual, however, it is also imperative that one practice crimestop within their own inner-dialogue, such that even from your own conscience you will be protected from committing a thoughtcrime.

Newspeak will also help dissuade from thoughtcrimeNewspeak is to be the new acceptable vocabulary, anything that references words outside of the most-up-to-date edition of the Newspeak dictionary will be considered Oldspeak and something to be construed as counter to groupthink. It is understood that by reducing the vocabulary to revolve around a few words such as good; which for example can be used as plusgood, doubleplusgood, ungood etc, it will serve to narrow the range of thought an individual is capable of, and thus reduce the capability of committing a thoughtcrime. How wonderful! That in the future we will be unable to commit crime for we will be incapable of its thought! This makes up another part of our new Party slogan: IGNORANCE IS STRENGTH.

In terms of the new laws, in effect, nothing will change. Unacceptable behaviours and thoughts will not be designated as illegal per se; one reason for this is because we do not plan on having any public trials. Anyone who is in violation of conduct will simply be removed either temporarily into a “re-education facility” or will be vaporised. Any subject that has been vaporised will be removed from the collective memory records and can never be referred to as having ever existed.

The reason why no public trials will be held from now on is because, as we have seen, dissent is infectious. Thus, holding public trials risk further encouragement towards dissent. It is for this reason that dissenters must be removed swiftly and quietly in the middle of the night. Such disappearances will occur relatively regularly and will eventually become the new normal, however, it will not be traumatic for the collective. The subject will simply cease to exist as if it were all just a dream, the structure of our daily routine unaffected.

In order to ensure utmost compliance, the collective will be employing the use of children spies, this has already been occurring abroad, and proves to be very effective.

Purges and vaporizations will be a necessary part of the government mechanics and will become the new normal. We have already discussed the necessity for vaporizations, as for the necessity of purges, it is because the community will be built so as to remain in stasis, however, this can only be accomplished through artificial means, for it is not natural that a thing remain the same but rather that it either improves or deteriorates.

However, in order for the Party to maintain absolute control, there can be no change to the present except for that chosen by the Party, thus any change is a challenge to the Party. In order to facilitate an artificial environment of no change, resources must artificially be kept low, and purges need to occur so that this environment of scarcity is tightly controlled and maintained.

In order for us to achieve this, our economy will have to go through stagnation, we will need to decrease the amount of land used for cultivation, we will no longer add capital equipment needed for industrial growth and great blocks of the population will be prevented from working and will be kept half alive by State charity. The wheels of industry cannot be allowed to turn so as to increase the real wealth of the world. Goods must be produced, but they must not be distributed, and in practice the only way of achieving this is by continuous warfare.

War will continue under the Old Cold War doctrine. War will always be present, and yet will never be seen by the majority of our citizens, the reason for this being that war will not be about a real threat to security nor about real conquests but rather will be about maintaining the present status quo by exhausting the surplus of consumable goods, while also helping to preserve the special mental atmosphere that a hierarchical society needs.

However, real war will be purely an internal affair, the war waged by the ruling group against its own subjects, with the object of the war as to keep the structure of society intact and unchanging.

A peace that is truly permanent under this new ideology is no different than an invisible permanent war. For peace in our new era will equate to stability through no change. This makes up our first Party slogan: WAR IS PEACE.


All of these means are necessary if we are to realise that the only secure basis for oligarchy is collectivism, and that oligarchy is the only means to achieving peace, freedom and strength for the collective.

However, we are still very far from this ideal and there is much that threatens its becoming, namely, the masses, or what we call the proles. So long as the masses believe that they are entitled to freedom of thought, our endeavours cannot succeed.

The individual must voluntarily relinquish this. It cannot be taken from them no matter the degree of control and no matter the threat of physical harm. An individual’s mind is theirs and cannot be taken, instead, the individual must be led to believe that it is in their best interest to relinquish their mind.

Let us do our best then to convince the individual that they are no longer fit to use their mind and let us pray that we are successful, for if we fail, our entire system of control fails with it.

“You would not make the act of submission which is the price of sanity…Reality exists only in the human mind, nowhere else. Not in the individual mind, which can make mistakes, and in any case soon perishes: only in the mind of the Party, which is collective and immortal. Whatever the Party holds to be truth, is truth. It is impossible to see reality except by looking through the eyes of the Party.”

– O’Brien in George Orwell’s “1984”

*  *  *

Cynthia Chung is the President of the Rising Tide Foundation and a writer at Strategic Culture Foundation, consider supporting her work by making a donation and subscribing to her substack page

Tyler Durden
Mon, 06/27/2022 – 23:55

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BRICS Summit Reaffirms That Russia Not As Isolated As NATO Suggests

BRICS Summit Reaffirms That Russia Not As Isolated As NATO Suggests

The recent BRICS summit managed to run its course this past week with very little fanfare, despite the fact that Russia is in the midst of a conflict with Ukraine that has led to a worldwide economic war. China is edging towards a potential invasion of Taiwan, and much of the planet is in the middle of a stagflationary crisis in the meantime.

The one major takeaway from the summit was the reaffirmed stance of the BRICS that they would continue to work closely with Russia in economic terms.  

Since the beginning of the invasion of Ukraine, there has been a running narrative in the western media that sanctions and the removal of Russian access to the SWIFT network would crush the country within a few months, leaving them penniless and unable to project military power.  This has not happened.

A picture was painted by journalists and politicians of a completely isolated Russia, destroyed by a global cancel culture campaign that would de-nation them.  In reality, Russian trade, specifically their oil trade, has actually expanded.  Both China and India have increased their purchases of Russian oil while enjoying discounted prices.  Simultaneously, Europe and the US are suffering from oil and gas inflation and the EU is cutting vital oil and gas supplies from Russia.

Any economist with a brain and a familiarity with the BRICS could have predicted this outcome, but the bias within the mainstream media is a powerful thing.  If there were any doubts that the BRICS might distance themselves from Russia, these were put to rest in the BRICS statement on the Ukraine situation.  While supporting humanitarian efforts within Ukraine as well as diplomatic solutions, the BRICS member took swipes and NATO countries for opportunism and instigation.  In other words, there will be no breakup with Russia and BRICS markets will continue to remain open to them. 

This means that Russia’s war with Ukraine will be sustainable for many months to come, which means that sanctions and economic warfare will continue for many months to come.  Supply chain disruptions will continue unabated as Russian commodities remain off the market for the west, and this will add to the already high inflation we are currently dealing with.

Further economic escalation could even lead to BRICS allies engaging in trade warfare as well.  The situation has a powderkeg potential beyond anything the world has seen in decades.

Tyler Durden
Mon, 06/27/2022 – 23:35

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The Depopulation Of Taiwan

The Depopulation Of Taiwan

Authored by Igor Chudov via Igor’s Newsletter,

This is a continuation of my post from yesterday about a massive 13% decline in births in Germany. Such a decline is a nine-sigma event, meaning that it is so unlikely to occur by chance, that it would naturally happen as rarely as an asteroid striking the Earth.

My article explored several more locales (UK, North Dakota, and Switzerland).

But no other place stands out as much as Taiwan does.

23% Drop in Birth Rate in Taiwan

According to a Taiwan government report, the birth rate dropped by 23.24% in May 2022, compared to May 2021.

I inputted historical birth rate data from Macrotrends for the years 2009-2021, and added the year 2022 as year 2021 adjusted down by 23.24%. Obviously, 2022 is not over and the number of Taiwanese babies to be born this year (or during the next 12 months) is unknown. So the chart below is an illustration of what would happen in the next 12 months if the 23.24% drop stays constant.

When expressed in “sigmas”, units of standard deviation, the 23.24% drop in the birth rate in Taiwan is a 26-sigma event!

This is can be described as “unimaginable” in terms of the likelihood of happening due to random chance.

The Wolfram-Alpha illustration of likelihood by sigma only goes to ten-sigma. They thought that it would be pointless to show more sigmas. Except a 26-sigma drop in birth rate just happened in Taiwan.

What Happened In Taiwan?

Health experts are quick to blame Covid for all sorts of health problems afflicting those they advised to vaccinate. It is not the vaccine, they say, it is Covid. We tried to protect you with the vaccine, they would always insist. But you got Covid anyway, thanks to the evil antivaxxers, and your problems are due to Covid — that’s their explanation.

We know for certain, though, that the drop in birth rate in Taiwan is NOT due to Covid. Yes, Taiwan is suffering from a terrible COVID pandemic right now (despite being 91% vaccinated), however, Covid in Taiwan only started around April 21 of 2022, and could not impact May birth rates much.

To see what could cause the extreme drop in births, go back 9 months from May 2022, so to September 2021.

Taiwan was a poster child for successful vaccination. 91% of all Taiwanese residents received a vaccine dose. By October 1, 2021, 56% of ALL people of Taiwan received Covid vaccines.

They got a fairly usual mix of “safe and effective” AstraZeneca, Moderna, and Pfizer vaccines.

People of Taiwan got their shots, felt assured that Covid-19 stops with every vaccinated person, and moved on with their lives.

I doubt that the people of Taiwan noticed anything at the end of September. They knew for sure that their vaccines were safe and effective and would not affect their sperm or pregnancies. So they proceeded with family plans just as before, trying to make babies on purpose, or partying and having fun and getting pregnant accidentally, just as people do elsewhere.

Except for 9 months later, they only gave birth to 77% of the number of babies expected.

I hope that the people of Taiwan will start asking their authorities: what is happening to us?

A Glimmer of Hope

If you are like me, and you like babies, children, and grandchildren, you are probably upset by now and are wondering what will happen to all of us. Let me mention a possibility that, although unlikely in my opinion, may make this drop in birth rates temporary.

Covid vaccines are known to “disrupt the menstrual cycle” and lower sperm counts. It is possible that some women, for a period of several months, could not conceive and become pregnant due to these disruptions. Because all Taiwanese women were vaccinated at almost the same time, those disruptions created a precipitous drop in birth rates.

My hope, as someone who likes people, is that this will turn out to be the case. However, in my opinion, we will likely see the opposite, and reductions in birth rates will be permanent. Why? Because vaccinating young people was a crime. It was not a mistake. Let me not explain why, in this article.

Crimes like this are NOT perpetrated to achieve a two-month drop in birth rates. Criminals of such nature who gave young people shots that they did not need, for sinister reasons, go for the jugular. Of course, not all people participating in vaccination campaigns were having such sinister intentions. But it is possible that some persons on top had criminal motives that they did not disclose.

Again, I hope that the preceding paragraph will turn out to be unfounded. I was, and am, against any of that happening, do not support anything that is happening in Taiwan, and I am very worried.

Time will tell.

They Told Us it is Safe

This fact check from Dec 5, 2020 says that the vaccine is definitely safe for pregnancy “because there is no evidence that it is unsafe”. No trial specifically for pregnancy and fertility was conducted. They just lied to us that it is safe — but had no way of knowing.

Subscribe here

Tyler Durden
Mon, 06/27/2022 – 23:15

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The First Cut Might Not Be The Deepest

The First Cut Might Not Be The Deepest

Even Deutsche Bank’s Jim Reid admits that he was “slightly surprised” at the results revealed by the following chart, lifted from his latest slidebook (available to professional subs).

It shows what the median US CPI was at the start of the 13 hiking cycles in the last 70 years and also where it was at the first cut after these hiking cycles. Three things stand out from this and the table you can see in the chart book.

  1. Median CPI at the first hike was ‘only’ 2.5% so the Fed has always tried to lean against inflation relatively early in the upswing. However, this time round they didn’t hike until we hit 8.5%.
  2. Median CPI at the first cut was a still high 4.4%. This supports the notion that in normal times the Fed looks ahead rather than at the current level. I was still slightly surprised it was as high as this at the first cut, which offers some support to the market view of 36bps of cuts priced between March and December 2023 even if inflation is still high.
  3. The median time from last hike to first cut was only 4 months. This short time frame also surprised me. Again this would support the market view of cuts being priced in relatively soon after this hiking cycle ends.

That, as Reid says, is the history, and it made Reid appreciate that cuts could come in this cycle when inflation is still high whether this would be a policy mistake or not. Where this cycle is so different though is that the first hike occurred very, very late in the inflation cycle. Whether this changes the dynamic, time will tell.

For what it’s worth, Reid’s base case remains that the Fed will find it very difficult to ease policy notably given that inflation is going to be harder to dislodge.

Tyler Durden
Mon, 06/27/2022 – 22:55

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Abortion Clinics Start Closing After Roe v. Wade Ruling

Abortion Clinics Start Closing After Roe v. Wade Ruling

Authored by Tom Ozimek via The Epoch Times (emphasis ours),

Abortion clinics in multiple states closed their doors on June 25 following the Supreme Court decision to overturn Roe v. Wade and allow states to pass their own laws regulating access to abortion.

An exam room sits empty in the Planned Parenthood Reproductive Health Services Center in St Louis, Mo., on May 28, 2019. (Michael B. Thomas/Getty Images)

Around half of the states are expected to press ahead with banning abortion after the high court’s landmark ruling, according to the Guttmacher Institute, while in a handful of states with so-called trigger laws, abortion has already become illegal.

Abortion will either soon become—or already is—unlawful in at least 13 states, according to a tally by The Epoch Times: Idaho, North Dakota, Utah, Wyoming, South Dakota, Missouri, Kentucky, Tennessee, Oklahoma, Louisiana, Arkansas, Mississippi, and Texas.

Bans in Mississippi and North Dakota will come into force when their respective attorneys general sign off, while Wyoming’s prohibition will take effect within days.

Tennessee will have its ban applied in 30 days, while Idaho and Texas will see bans applied 30 days after the official judgment. Abortion has become illegal in the following states: Kentucky, Louisiana, Arkansas, South Dakota, Missouri, Oklahoma, Alabama, and Utah.

Clinics Close

Alabama’s three abortion clinics stopped performing abortions as providers face prosecution under a law dating back to 1951.

Staff at the Alabama Women’s Center for Reproductive Alternatives in Huntsville on Friday told women in the waiting room that they could not carry out any more abortions that day, though the women were given a list of out-of-state clinics still doing abortions.

At an abortion clinic in Little Rock, Arkansas, the doors to the patient area shut as soon as the Supreme Court’s decision was formally announced.

“No matter how hard we prepare for bad news, when it finally hits, it hits hard,” a nurse at the clinic told the BBC.

An abortion clinic in New Orleans, Louisiana, one of three that performs the procedure in the state, was also shuttered on Friday.

Legal Uncertainty

Abortion clinics elsewhere—including Arizona, Texas, and West Virginia—stopped performing abortions for fear of prosecution based on laws that predate Roe v. Wade.

In Texas, where trigger laws don’t go into effect for another month, providers suspended abortions while they seek legal advice on whether they are subject to an abortion ban based on laws passed in the 1920s.

Texas Republican Attorney General Ken Paxton, who announced the statewide closure of his agency’s office on Friday “in honor of the nearly 70 million unborn babies killed in the womb since 1973,” warned in a letter that prosecutors could immediately choose to pursue criminal prosecutions based on earlier laws that were unenforceable while Roe v. Wade stood.

Similarly, the existence of a 19th-century abortion ban in West Virginia led a clinic there to stop performing the procedure.

Several providers in Arizona halted abortions on Friday as they seek to determine whether pre-statehood laws may be grounds for prosecution.

Overall, repealing Roe v. Wade means that some 36 million women of reproductive age will lose access to abortion in their states, according to research from Planned Parenthood.

Predictably, the decision to overturn Roe v. Wade has drawn mixed reactions, with demonstrators outside the Supreme Court voicing both indignation and jubilation.

Tyler Durden
Mon, 06/27/2022 – 22:35

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“More Money In Your Pocket” – Newsom To Helicopter Drop $17 Billion In “Inflation Relief” Stimmy Checks 

“More Money In Your Pocket” – Newsom To Helicopter Drop $17 Billion In “Inflation Relief” Stimmy Checks 

As the Federal Reserve attempts to crush aggregate demand through the most aggressive monetary tightening policies in decades to cool red-hot inflation, California Governor Gavin Newsom has come up with the brilliant idea to stoke even more demand through a new round of stimulus checks. 

Millions of Californians will be receiving up to $1,050 as part of a NEW middle-class tax rebate. 

“That’s more money in your pocket to help you fill your gas tank and put food on the table,” Newsom tweeted Sunday night. 

The “inflation relief package” is a staggering $17 billion and will provide relief payments on an income-based system. Bloomberg Law provides more details on how the stimulus scheme works for households:

Individuals making as much as $75,000 a year, or joint filers making up to $150,000, would get $350 each plus $350 for one dependent for a maximum of $1,050. Those with income up to $125,000, or $250,000 filing jointly, would get $250 each plus another $250 for one dependent for a maximum of $750. Those earning more than $250,000, or $500,000 filing jointly, would get $200 each plus $200 for one dependent for maximum of $600.

Newsom’s move to tackle high inflation by helicopter dropping billions of dollars in stimulus checks is utter nonsense and will only work counter to what the Fed is ultimately trying to achieve: recession by aggressively hiking interest rates and winding down the balance sheet to reduce aggregate demand, so consumer prices fall.

Newsom’s stimulus checks could temporarily fuel inflation in the state as households would instantly spend the free money on whatever they please. Solving inflation with more government will only worsen the situation. This is also something the Biden administration fails to see (read: Biden Economic Adviser Asserts That More Government Spending Will Solve Inflation Crisis)

How long until California Democrats beg for price controls as their policies could incite even more inflation? They can’t keep blaming ‘Putin Price Hike’ if their policies spike inflation. 

As no lessor authority than The Wall Street Journal Editorial board succinctly concluded:

“Too bad this bribe, er, incentive to vote Democratic won’t offset the state’s fast-rising cost of living, high taxes or the premium Californians pay for energy, water and housing, among other things, due to progressive policies.”

The Newsom manifesto appears to be from taxpayers according to their ability to the politicians according to their need.

Tyler Durden
Mon, 06/27/2022 – 22:15

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“Catastrophic Risk To Stocks And Bonds”: Fed’s Balance Sheet Caused Inflation, Not Low Rates

“Catastrophic Risk To Stocks And Bonds”: Fed’s Balance Sheet Caused Inflation, Not Low Rates

By Vincent Cignarella, Bloomberg Markets Live commentator and reporter

The Fed’s balance sheet as a percentage of GDP is what is driving today’s inflation — not the nominal Fed Funds rate. This will emerge as a major risk to stocks and bonds if not managed soon.

The chart below shows it was not the level of interest rates that contributed to higher inflation, but the Fed maintaining the size of the balance sheet at too-high levels for too long.

If economic growth slows as many expect, the influence the balance sheet has on GDP will be even greater and may pose potential catastrophic risk to stocks and bonds.

As growth slows, so must the balance sheet to maintain the equilibrium between supply and demand. The market will decide the level of rates; the Fed can just follow along.

Tyler Durden
Mon, 06/27/2022 – 21:55

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‘A Dire Warning For Democrats’: Over 1 Million Voters Switch To GOP Over The Last Year

‘A Dire Warning For Democrats’: Over 1 Million Voters Switch To GOP Over The Last Year

The Republican Party has been picking up support over the past year, as more than 1 million voters across 43 states switched to the GOP, according to voter registration data analyzed by the Associated Press.

More than 1 million voters across 43 states have switched to the Republican Party over the last year, according to voter registration data analyzed by The Associated Press. The previously unreported number reflects a phenomenon that is playing out in virtually every region of the country — Democratic and Republican states along with cities and small towns — in the period since President Joe Biden replaced former President Donald Trump. -AP

Democrats, meanwhile, picked up just 630,000 new voters in the analysis of 1.7 million voters who had switched affiliations over the last 12 months. The data, which was provided by political data firm L2, used a combination of state voter records and statistical modeling.

“While party switching is not uncommon, the data shows a definite reversal from the period while Trump was in office, when Democrats enjoyed a slight edge in the number of party switchers nationwide,” reads the report.

The data points to a red wave brewing ahead of this fall’s midterms, according to Axios.

The most damaging aspect of this shift to Democrats? The suburbs.

According to the report, ‘well-educated swing voters who turned against Trump’s Republican Party in recent years appear to be swinging back.”

Over the last year, far more people are switching to the GOP across suburban counties from Denver to Atlanta and Pittsburgh and Cleveland. Republicans also gained ground in counties around medium-size cities such as Harrisburg, Pennsylvania; Raleigh, North Carolina; Augusta, Georgia; and Des Moines, Iowa. -AP

More notables about the report via Axios:

  • The party switches were evident across the board — in red states and blue states, cities and small towns and suburban areas, AP found.
  • Of the nearly 1.7 million voters who changed parties in states with available data over the last year, some two-thirds went to the GOP.
  • “Biden and Democrats are woefully out of touch with the American people, and that’s why voters are flocking to the Republican Party in droves,” RNC chair Ronna McDaniel told the AP.

Between the lines: One outlier was in Virginia, where Democrats saw an uptick in registered voters.

“It’s more so a rejection of the left than embracing the right,” according to 37-year-old Ben Smith of Larimer County, Colorado, who says he reluctantly left the Democratic party over the last year after becoming concerned about his former party’s push for mandatory COVID-19 vaccines, as well as the party’s inability to tame crime while focusing on racial justice.

AP called it a “dire warning for Democrats” who are already dealing with the macro effects of the economy reflecting in the polls this fall during midterms.

What’s to blame?

According to the report, suburban parents grew ‘increasingly frustrated’ over the prolonged pandemic-related school closures, while the RNC began hosting voter registration events at gas stations in suburban locations within swing states, such as Arizona, Michigan, Nevada and Pennsylvania.

“Biden and Democrats are woefully out of touch with the American people, and that’s why voters are flocking to the Republican Party in droves,” said RNC Chair Ronna McDaniel. “American suburbs will trend red for cycles to come” thanks to “Biden’s gas hike, the open border crisis, baby formula shortage and rising crime.”

Over the last year, nearly every state — even those without high-profile Republican primaries — moved in the same direction as voters by the thousand became Republicans. Only Virginia, which held off-year elections in 2021, saw Democrats notably trending up over the last year. But even there, Democrats were wiped out in last fall’s statewide elections.

In Iowa, Democrats used to hold the advantage in party changers by a 2-to-1 margin. That’s flipped over the last year, with Republicans ahead by a similar amount. The same dramatic shift is playing out in Ohio.

In Florida, Republicans captured 58 percent of party switchers during those last years of the Trump era. Now, over the last year, they command 70 percent. And in Pennsylvania, the Republicans went from 58 to 63 percent of party changers. -AP

To understand more about why disaffected Democrats have left their party (aside from the overwhelming obvious), click here.

Tyler Durden
Mon, 06/27/2022 – 21:35

via ZeroHedge News Tyler Durden

What To Expect In A Post-Roe World

What To Expect In A Post-Roe World

Authored by Jonathan Turley,

Below is my Hill column on what to expect in a post-Roe world. That world is already taking shape with states crafting their laws reflecting the values of their citizens from Colorado passing a law protecting the right to abortion up to the moment of birth to Louisiana banning all abortions except in limited circumstances.

The fact is that most Americans are in the middle in this debate with more nuanced views than many political leaders.

In the months to come, we will see if that view will prevail in the majority of states.

Here is the column:

In their historic ruling in Dobbs v. Jackson Women’s Health Organization, six Supreme Court justices noted that the nation was grappling with this deeply divisive issue in 1973 but that “Roe abruptly ended that political process.” The court has now declared that the future of abortion will rest with 330 million Americans rather than nine justices.

As this matter returns to the states, it is striking to consider what has changed legally and socially in the past 50 years. The comparison may hold some interesting surprises for politicians who are now declaring, as did President Biden, that “this fall, Roe is on the ballot.”

How little has changed

If one looks solely at the alignment of states, surprisingly little has changed. In 1973, 30 states banned abortion at any stage of a pregnancy, with some exceptions for the health of the mother. In the Dobbs litigation of 2022, 26 states asked the court to overturn Roe and its successor, Casey.

Thus, we remain deeply divided.

Roughly 16 states are poised or expected to make abortion illegal immediately under so-called trigger laws. South Dakota, Louisiana and Kentucky have immediate prohibitions that will come into effect. Missouri claimed to be the first to declare all abortion as unlawful except for medical emergencies.

Twenty-seven states have protections for abortion that are expected to continue. States like Colorado, New Jersey, Oregon and Delaware actually protected abortion without any limit on the stage of a pregnancy — guaranteeing the right up to just before time of birth.

Internationally, only seven countries allow abortion after the 20th week. While many countries have decriminalized abortion, most are closer to Mississippi than Michigan in limiting abortion to the first or second trimester.

How much has changed

While Dobbs is a major reversal of a long-standing precedent, much has changed legally since 1973. After Roe, the Supreme Court continued to expand protections over lifestyles and intimate relations. In the parade of horribles that followed Friday’s release of the Dobbs ruling, politicians and pundits warned that the decision could undo cases protecting contraception, same-sex marriage and other rights.

House Speaker Nancy Pelosi (D-Calif.), Vice President Harris and other Democrats continue to claim that the court was taking the country back to the last century. The image of criminalized homosexuality, marriage bans and contraception limits is unnerving — but also untrue.

In the Dobbs decision, the court’s majority expressly, repeatedly rejects the application of this holding to these other rights. Indeed, it is relatively rare to see the court go to this extent to proactively close off the use of a new case in future cases. The court said that “intimate sexual relations, contraception, and marriage” are not impacted by its holding because “abortion is fundamentally different, as both Roe and Casey acknowledged.” It noted that abortion is unique in dealing with “what those decisions called ‘fetal life’ and what the law now before us describes as an ‘unborn human being.’”

The court repeatedly stressed that those claiming the country will be put into a legal Wayback Machine are simply using the opinion “to stoke unfounded fear that our decision will imperil those other rights.” It could not be more clear, as the court said, that “rights regarding contraception and same-sex relationships are inherently different from the right to abortion because the latter (as we have stressed) uniquely involves what Roe and Casey termed ‘potential life.’”

The court and Justice Brett Kavanaugh’s concurrence repeat, almost mantra-like: “Nothing in this opinion should be understood to cast doubt on precedents that do not concern abortion.” Only Justice Clarence Thomas suggested that these other cases should be examined, yet even he stressed this opinion expressly rejects that application.

Putting aside the legal changes, there are major technological changes since 1973 that will impact the post-Roe world. Roughly 60 percent of abortions today are carried out at home, not in clinics, using pills with mifepristone and misoprostol to abort a pregnancy. In 2021, the Food and Drug Administration permanently removed the in-person requirement for these prescriptions and allowed women to access the drugs via telehealth appointments and online pharmacies. It will be difficult for states to interfere with such prescriptions, particularly if the federal government protects such access.

How we have changed

The greatest change may be us. As this issue returns to the states for citizens to decide, we are a different country than we were in 1973. Great strides have been made in the advancement of women and a wider acceptance of people making decisions about their own lives and values. While we remain divided on abortion, the public seems far more moderate and unified than the leaders of either party.

While some Democrats are voicing absolute views of abortion, and some Republicans are calling for total bans, most Americans hold a more nuanced view.

In 1975, polling showed 54 percent supported abortion under some circumstances, with 21 percent saying it should be entirely legal; 22 percent said it should be illegal.

According to recent polling by the Pew Research Center, only 8 percent of adults say abortion should be illegal without exception, while just 19 percent say abortion should be legal in all cases, without exception. Yet, polls also show that 65 percent of Americans would make most abortions illegal in the second trimester, and 80 percent would make most abortions illegal in the third trimester.

These polls suggest that the majority of Americans will continue to live in states protecting abortion while citizens would support limits like the one in Mississippi. In Virginia, Gov. Glenn Youngkin (R) announced an effort to limit abortions to Mississippi’s 15-week standard but expressed a willingness to compromise on that cutoff date. In other words, there may be room for compromise as states work out their own approaches to abortion.

Of course, none of the political or legal realities will likely penetrate the rage and rhetoric following the decision.

Indeed, there is a tendency toward Roe revisionism. Roe supporters ignore that Roe’s constitutional rationale was always controversial, including among some liberals. Justice Ruth Bader Ginsburg, for example, called the ruling “heavy-handed judicial activism” and felt the decision went too far. The original Roe actually died years ago when it was gutted by Casey in 1992 in its logic and tests. It was later the subject of 5-4 decisions that created a confusing muddle of what constituted “undue burdens.”

Such revisionism is a natural part of grieving. In Shakespeare’s “Richard III,”the Queen Mother was asked how to deal with the hate of loss. She responds: “Think that thy babes were sweeter than they were; And he that slew them fouler than he is.” The same is true of Roe revisionism. Roe is now presented as inviolate and beyond question in its constitutional footing, while the opinion that slew it is presented as threatening every right secured since 1973.

Our post-Roe world will not be written by Congress with the proposed federalization of Roe or another 50 years of conflicting court decisions. Instead, it will rest with citizens in 50 different states in coming years. The process just might surprise us.

Tyler Durden
Mon, 06/27/2022 – 21:15

via ZeroHedge News Tyler Durden

Nigerian Governor Orders Mass Issuance Of Gun Permits To Counter Murderous Hordes

Nigerian Governor Orders Mass Issuance Of Gun Permits To Counter Murderous Hordes

Gun permits have rarely been issued in Nigeria—but that’s about to change.

In the face of rampant violence by huge gangs of heavily armed bandits, one state governor has ordered the mass issuance of gun permits to citizens desperate for a chance to protect themselves. 

For over a decade, Nigerians living in the country’s northwestern states have endured an endless plague of looting, kidnapping and murder at the hands of gangs and ethnic militias, which Nigerians call bandits. The violence has taken its steepest toll on the states of Zamfara and Kaduna.  

A map showing the states of Nigeria, with the northwestern Zamfara and Kaduna states highlighted

The bandits operate from bases in remote forests where terrain makes offensive operations by Nigerian security forces more difficult and dangerous. In addition, “Nigeria’s security forces are stretched fighting an Islamist insurgency in the northeast of the country, leaving individual states to rely on vigilante groups to tackle the bandits,” reports Reuters.

In addition to the money they gain through robbery and kidnapping, the bandits also control gold mines, giving them additional resources to fund weapons purchases. 

Barack Obama and Hillary Clinton helped give Nigeria’s murderous bandits a powerful advantage over citizens and police alike. The collapse of Libya’s government after the U.S.-NATO-led regime change war boosted the flow of military weapons throughout West Africa. According to a 2016 OXFAM report, Libya’s illicit arms market has enabled online purchase of rifles, heavy machine guns, rocket-launchers, anti-tank guided missiles and grenade launchers. 

With government increasingly incapable of stopping the onslaught, the bandits have been emboldened. In early January, some 200 people were killed in Zamfara as bandits used violence on civilians as a form of retaliation for government airstrikes on their base. In a two-day orgy of violence, up to nine villages were attacked, with bandits shooting villagers while looting and burning their homes

Last week, bandits attacked two churches in the neighboring Kaduna state, killing eight people and kidnapping 38.

And now, Bello Matawalle, the governor of Zamfara state, has decided his citizens deserve at least a fighting chance against formidable foes. Specifically, the governor ordered the police commissioner to issue 500 licenses in each of the state’s 19 emirate subdivisions.

“Government is ready to facilitate people, especially our farmers, to secure basic weapons for defending themselves,” said Ibrahim Magaji Dosara, Zamfara information commissioner.

Nigerian bandits at their base in 2021 (via Wikipedia) 

Perhaps betraying an affinity for gun control—even in as desperate a situation as that faced by Nigerians—Associated Press couldn’t help but strike a skeptical tone: “It was not yet clear how arming citizens would help prevent the attacks; authorities have admitted that even the Nigerian police are sometimes overwhelmed during violent attacks.” 

The expansion of gun ownership is one of a variety of measures against the marauders. Others include the closure of gas stations in particularly dangerous areas, and a ban of motorcycles, which are integral to the bandits’ modus operandi. Upwards of 300 or more motorcyclists descend on villages at once, typically with both an armed rider and an armed passenger.

“Anybody found riding a motorbike within the areas [are] considered bandits and security agencies are thereby directed to shoot such persons at sight,” said Dosara.

Tyler Durden
Mon, 06/27/2022 – 20:55

via ZeroHedge News Tyler Durden