Category Archives: Civil Liberties

OCLA Statement on the Government’s Use of the Emergencies Act

The Ontario Civil Liberties Association (OCLA) condemns the federal government’s use of the Emergencies Act (formerly the War Measures Act) to dispel peaceful protests in Canada.

Peaceful protest and civil disobedience are essential in a democratic society – without these mechanisms of peaceful expression, demonstration, and opposition there can be no democracy.

There is no national emergency caused by the Freedom Convoy protesters. Therefore, the government’s use of the Emergencies Act can only be understood as an opportunistic political act intended to eliminate protest that opposes the policies of the sitting government, to manipulate public opinion by further demonizing “the unvaccinated”, and to advance the ongoing degradation of civil liberties in Canada by setting an extreme precedent of governmental intervention to freeze or appropriate the assets of individual citizens who peacefully oppose the policies of the government of the day.

Related statements by other organizations and individuals are linked below:

The full text of Prime Minister Trudeau’s February 14, 2022, Emergencies Act announcement can be read at the link here (published by The Peterborough Examiner).

The post OCLA Statement on the Government’s Use of the Emergencies Act first appeared on Dissident Voice.

Shotgun Science and Bio-Colonialism

Introduction

As an Ottawa resident and an anarchist, it seems to me that an ultra-leftist analysis at ground zero of this thing is fundamentally necessary, specifically concerning the Canadian Government’s draconian get vaxxed or get fired policy. Having walked the congested downtown of Ottawa, it’s clear that this is an issue that transcends the political spectrum between the left and the right, since all walks of life and political stripes can be found in the downtown these days, contra the mainstream media’s coverage. And the exact point where the left and right sides of the political spectrum meet is upon the Government’s authoritarian application of its get vaxxed or get fired policy.

In short, to throw people out of work during a pandemic is insane and a serious error in judgment and governance. It is a total failure of leadership, policy, bureaucracy, and any form of decent human conduct during a global crisis when people are seriously struggling, both on the left and the right.  It is on this point, and this point alone, that any ultra-leftist analysis must revolve, and I dare say align with the other side of the political aisle. In my estimation, there is no significant issue for the ultra left pertaining to masks, social distancing, and lockdown policies since, from personal experience, it seems these innocuous practices have, to a certain extent, mitigated Covid-19 numbers, especially in my region. After all, people’s health must come before the economy.

However, upon the dreaded get vaxxed or get fired policy, there can be no compromise, no retreat or surrender. The Government is coercively enacting a fascist policy straight out of the 1930’s fascist playbook in order to construct a scapegoat, a lightening rod capable of diverting attention away from the Government’s own major failures during the pandemic. In sum, the Government is attempting to whip the population into a fascist hysterical frenzy of hate and retribution against a small minority of the population so as to absolve the Government of the fact that it has seriously fucked up in a lot of ways. And its get vaxxed or get fired policy (a major Government fuck up) is the mechanism by which the State is ducking its own liabilities, misgivings, and responsibilities. And, from any ultra-left perspective, such draconian State authoritarianism must be met with the unbridled force of anti-authoritarianism, namely, anti-fascism by any means necessary.

I

At the moment, society is in the full-throes of shotgun science, shotgun science being a  State form of one-sided medical science administered by means of coercion, hysteria, and mandated totalitarian threats, rather than any notion of sound reasoned scientific argument and scientific study. In brief, shotgun science is a perversion of the principles of genuine scientific inquiry in service of political power and profit. It is the acceleration of scientific inquiry and scientific study haphazardly in service of political power and profit via the removal of safeguards, as well as an expedited product roll-out coupled with authoritarian mandates, or more specifically, one serious fascist mandate that overrides human rights, liberty, and/or autonomy. Shotgun sciences come into existence when the State arbitrarily installs itself as the great arbiter of scientific truth and falsehood, and shuts down debate and scientific inquiry, thus, fast-forwarding and accelerating the implementation of an inadequate science in and across socio-economic existence regardless of the immediate and long-term consequences.

In short, shotgun science is a one-sided seemingly unanimous science, celebrated and buttressed by the repressive and ideological apparatuses of the State, which silence any and all dissenting voices by means of an underlying sense of terror and coercion, both mental and physical. To quote Paul Feyerabend, a shotgun science may be defined as a “monster Science that speaks with a single voice, [in the sense that it] is a paste job constructed by [a set of State-approved]  propagandists” for political and economic purposes.1 For Feyerabend, the real sciences never speak with a single voice because the real “sciences are full of conflict”.2 As a result, according to Feyerabend, any State-sanctioned shotgun “science cannot stand diverging opinions. [As a result,] it calls them [conspiratorial] lies” and, through the powers of the State apparatus, it strives to silence these diverging opinions and their scientific research permanently. In fact, any shotgun science paints itself to be an “alleged friend of reason, [but] it distorts it [in order] to make [reason fit its political and economic] intentions”.3

In  sum, shotgun science is political anti-science and an exercise in an anti-scientific rationality, despite portraying itself to be the embodiment of the pure spirit of scientific study and scientific rationality. In a word, it is a grotesque distortion of real science in service of profit and a nefarious political agenda. It is the one-sided bias politicization of a science.  And, out of the logic of these shotgun sciences, the Government’s get vaxxed or get fired policy arose and flourished like a poison weed in the brains of our centrist politicians. Whereby, the State squarely places a sawed-off shotgun in the people’s back and declared with its usual smug righteousness, to quote Jean-Francois Lyotard, “adapt [yourself] to our ends—or else”.4

II

As a Métis aboriginal, when the liberal governments of the world saw fit to mandate vaccines and vaccine passports under pain of duress, it was clear the government was no longer in support of democracy or rights, but instead preferred the capitalist authoritarianism of big business and big pharma. And not unfamiliar with these types of coercive mandates, aboriginals have a long history of dealing with a State government, drunk on power and a sense of righteousness, who decrees authoritarian mandates, willy-nilly. That is a set of micro-fascist mandates whereby a segment of the population must cough up its children under pain of duress since the government has deemed itself the great arbiter of what is true and what is best for each and all. To note, fascists are the great historical proponents of authoritarian mandates. And like the fascists before them, the liberal governments of the world are rummaging through the fascist playbook for despotic policies in the sense that vaccine mandates and vaccine passports are akin to all those fascist decrees that littered the 1930s. In the liberal Government’s case it is to identify and ban the unvaccinated from employment and from participating in public life. Like the fascists of old, the Government’s get vaxxed or get fired policy is an attempt to exclude and discriminate against a segment of the population simply because they are exercising caution or the individual rights to abstain. And like the fascists of old, the Government is defending its draconian policy in the name of Nationalism, absolute power, and the (health) purity of the people, specifically, those people who support the Government’s political agenda, unconditionally.

The injection mandate and passports discriminate against people’s right to choose, to move freely, and most importantly, to make a living. For example, abortion rights have given women the right to choose what they do with their bodies, pertaining to a specific medical procedure. And the same should apply with vaccines. People must be given the right to choose what they do with their bodies pertaining to a specific medical procedure regardless of consequences. This is what democracy and human rights are all about. You cannot pick and choose which rights you will champion on a given issue and which rights you will stomp on because it suits your myopic political agenda.

Imagine an employer or the State giving women the ultimatum: you either get an abortion or you get fired, this is our business policy. You must submit to the specific medical treatment of our work establishment or you starve on the unemployment line, either/or. In the sense that to work for us, you must resign your bodily autonomy to us, to do with as we please, medically. Like Doctor Mengele, who medically experimented with prisoners of the German State against their bodily autonomy and will, the Liberal Government is flirting with the same fascist modus operandi. Although, not as extreme, the same logic applies with mandatory vaccination and passports, get vaxxed or get fired. And clearly, being fired is the labor market equivalent of facing a fascist firing squad.

III

Ultimately, the State is ill-equiped and too ideologically partisan to be able to make any type of informed decision as to what people should put in their bodies pertaining to a specific medical treatment. We would call any government, who attempts to impose a ban on abortion, fascist.

And, in all honesty, it is our democratic duty at the moment to categorize the current liberal government and all its obedient media lackeys as fascists for supporting these get vaxxed or get fired policies. Because that is what they are — when these authoritarians and totalitarians attempt to arbitrarily remove rights from a segment of the population because this segment does not buy into the State-manufactured ideological tripe paraded before our eyes.

Abortion rights and vaccine injection rights are the same thing. You cannot champion abortion rights for one segment of the population, allowing them to make an informed decision about their own bodies, while denying the same rights to others when it comes to a different medical treatment. This is what Systemic Discrimination is, People!

It is giving leeway and rights to one segment of the population through State policies while denying another segment of the population the same rights, through another set of State policies. And both abortion rights and vaccine refusal rights work according to the same logic. That is, people must have bodily autonomy and bodily governance over their own bodies pertaining to their own personal decisions concerning various types of medical procedures. Whether it is abortion rights or the right to refuse a shitty vaccine, choice must fall with the individual and never with the State! In the sense that the State is too political, too partisan, too heavy-handed, clunky, bureaucratic, and mediocre to fully grasp the plethora of nuances, varieties, and differences found throughout the general-population. The State’s only job is to offer safe medical options and never to coercively impose by force one option upon the general-population, by means of terror, the terror of unemployment, a shotgun in people’s faces.

IV

History repeats itself, but, history repeats itself in a different form every time, hence its cunning and its ability to dupe the gullible over and over again. And like the authoritarian residential school mandates applied to aboriginals, once again we are faced with a totalitarian coercive mandate against our will and under pain of duress by a government who has lost its mind, but nonetheless, once again, has the gerrymandered support for its vile authoritarian State decrees, which are anti-democratic and straight out of the fascist playbook. Sunny ways have degenerated into an authoritarian State nightmare.

As a result, there is a strong likelihood that our future descendants, one hundred years from now or sooner, after endless denials, white-washing, and the smothering of facts by the State and its media propagandists, will be privy to another flurry of half-hearted apologies by another set of mediocre State-officials, bemoaning another State tragedy that could have been avoided if cooler and smarter heads had prevailed. And this time around, the teary-eyed apologies will be about the handling of Covid-19 and the implementation of the authoritarian State injection mandate and passports. Aboriginals know these half-hearted apologies all too well and have been their recipients all too often.

To have doubt; i.e., healthy doubts, is the cornerstone of any real science. To quote Paul Feyerabend, “science is not one thing, it is many. Science…[is] a wide variety of [opinions and] products held together, rather artificially (or should I say artistically) by a single name”.5  Science is never completely unanimous. It is never totalitarian. It is messy with many diverging verities. As Feyerabend states, “science is full of lacunae and contradictions”.5  Science does not speak in a single voice and does not offer a single coherent viewpoint, no matter how hard the State tries to pass off its shotgun science as unified, safe, and without side effects. Indeed, there are many undocumented side effects, not including the State-manufactured trauma of having to face unemployment head-on, due to a set of State-approved, authoritarian micro-fascist injection mandate. From an aboriginal perspective, the get vaxxed or get fired policy raises the spectre of colonialism all over again in a new guise, that is, the guise of bio-colonialism, bio-colonialism being the forceful application of State coercion via the medical community upon a racial minority who refuse to abide by a shoddy ineffective science.

Ultimately, doubt and plurality are central features of science, scientific rationality, and scientific inquiry. They are the double-helix at the center of science, by which science oscillates, and slowly, carefully, and rationally advances. And when the State shuts down dissenting voices and freedom of choice, it turns science into a grotesque monstrosity. It turns science against scientific rationality and/or logical-reason, that is, the pivot upon which any genuine science is founded and developed. In fact, the State transforms science into a totalitarian, I dare say, fascist-like Frankenstein monster, one that goose-steps across the globe with ear plugs in and blinkers on, regardless of the collateral damage it causes.  In short, science only becomes totalitarian when it is super-charged by a State-manufactured army of submissive centrist extremists, who saturate and populate the offices and cubicles of the State apparatus, as well as the talking slots of the mainstream media, spewing the State talking points on cue, devoid of critique and/or critical thinking.

In fact, a good rule of thumb is that whenever any State-approved scientist talks to you about the unanimous authoritarian nature of a specific science, you are in the presence of a quack, peddling another shotgun science. A quack is, by definition, a medical stool pigeon, who quacks on cue the latest platitudes presented to him or her by the State. A quack is a person with medical credentials who, being quite mediocre in the general practice of medicine and the general research of science and, broadly speaking, the philosophy and inherent ethics of science, finds refuge upstairs in the corridors of State power, that is, in the special administrative channels of scientific institutions as an obedient government lackey and spoke-person, namely, a quack on demand.  To reiterate Feyerabend, “there is not a single science”.6 Thus, whenever, you hear State officials or State-approved scientists speak in absolutes, you are in all likelihood being forced-fed a soup of verbal diarrhea by a government lackey, a quack at the beck and call of the higher-ups in the Medical-Darwinian hierarchical pyramid.

V

All things considered, there is nothing abnormal or conspiratorial about having serious doubts about a fast-food, shotgun type of government science, which is being rammed down the throats of citizens, a double-barrel shotgun pressed tight against the curve of their backs, care of the State and our profit-driven capitalist employers. In the short-term, these shotgun sciences are shoddy and full of questions and untested hypotheses. And most shotgun sciences lead to catastrophes in the long run, akin to the authoritarian mandated horror show that was John A. Macdonald’s State-approved residential school genocidal program.  In fact, any shotgun science works best under the heavy blanket of ideology and hysteria since shotgun science is political and economic, first and foremost. And the liberals, whether federal or municipal, have showered the National airwaves with gallons upon gallons of mass hysteria. One only needs to examine the news coverage of the Freedom Convoy’s first weekend in Ottawa to see an endless parade of Government lackeys, hysterical politicians, propagandists, and State-partisan news journalists, hysterically attempting to manufacture large-scale public hysteria against the convoy and in favor of drastic forms of State-repression (Goebbels would be so proud of the Canadian Broadcasting Corporation’s dreadful one-sided coverage that initial weekend).

Notwithstanding, this is the operationa mechanics of shotgun science, namely, how it functions and operates on the ground; how it uses a mainstream media monolgue, devoid of critique and/or dissent, to drown out any and all opposing viewpoints to its own State-manufactured, distorted, alternate pseudo reality. Shotgun science conceals its own scientific inadequacies by pounding a State-manufactured scapegoat, politically, ideologically, and economically, that is,  a scapegoat of the State’s own design. In the sense that all shotgun sciences are foremost concerned with profit and the submission of the general population to the State. Shotgun science is about political, ideological, and economic profitability at the expense of a State-manufactured scapegoat. It is about the health of the State and its State power before the health of the citizenry.

Like the despot John A. Macdonald before, the federal government and its provincial and municipal underlings, have returned to John A.’s preferred mode of State terror so as to ram through another set of dubious State policies, namely, another round of dubious authoritarian John A. State mandates, namely, the get vaxxed or get fired State-policy. However, this time around, the State-imposed colonialism is biological in nature. It is bio-colonialism. That is, the coercive enforcement of a State-mandated medical treatment against the free will and autonomy of indigenous persons and/or the general-population. Like abortion rights for women, medical rights apply to all people. Everyone has the right to choose what they put into their own bodies, what treatment they will subject themselves to.

Yet, the average vaccine-marinaded citizen is giving full-fledged support to our government’s bio-colonialist John A. authoritarian mandate, oblivious to the financial consequences of such flagrant despotism. In the sense that most citizens are spellbound by the government’s vox populi, bellowing loudly and incessantly from the government’s bull-horn, namely, the State-gospel according to the CBC, the Canadian Brainwashing Corporation.

Therefore, at this exact moment in history, to refuse shoddy vaccination is one of the most courageous and heroic things a person can do right-now, especially as an ultra-leftist. Any State that partakes in authoritarian shotgun science must be resisted since all forms of authoritarianism must be resisted, at whatever the cost.  And, as an anarchist and an aboriginal, I will not submit to another State-approved authoritarian mandate like the ones imposed upon my indigenous ancestors. To exercise caution and patience, when it comes to these fast-food shotgun sciences, is good practice. No one should take the Government at its word without doing his or her due diligence.

Due to the fact that when the State and a shoddy science make a covenant, science is no longer benign and neutral. Indeed, science becomes a political and economic force, a highly partisan politico-economic force, whose notion of consensus becomes like that of the State, namely, that consensus is subjugation. In the sense that, according to the State, a consensus is reached when all dissenting voices are silenced, ignored, and/or marginalized into acquiescence, due to the fact that, for the State apparatus, consensus and subjugation are one and the same thing. One implies the other. Subjugation is consensus and consensus is subjugation, according to the State.

In a nutshell, the State builds consensus by silencing all dissenting voices, and, according to the State, a dissenting voice not heard is a consenting voice, nodding jubilantly in approval. Thereby, the fundamental values of real science; i.e., inquiry, debate, counter-argument, doubt, rationality, independent research etc., are usurped and made inoperative when, by covenant, the State absorbs a science into its partisan authoritarian agenda.  And, at that moment, scientific inquiry is corrupted by the State. It becomes an ideological tool of statecraft. It becomes a shotgun science, a degenerate version of its former self, whereby the verity of scientific facts, scientific rationality, and the efficacy of scientific treatments are in the end determined by the partisan political agenda of the State and, more importantly, capitalist profit. The motto of any shotgun science backed by the State, is: “a patient cured is a customer lost”.  As Feyerabend states, when science is subjugated to the State, scientific “research in large institutes is [no longer] guided by Truth and Reason, but by the most rewarding [element of the economy, namely,]…money”.7   And  the authoritarian vaccine mandate and passports are a sure way for the State to make sure that Big Pharma gets the large sums of money and big profits it so desperately desires and has forcefully imposed upon the Liberal Governments of the world.

Thus, regardless of the consequences, authoritarianism in all its forms, medical or otherwise, must be resisted by any means necessary if need be. And indeed, I am willing to put my money where my mouth is, willing to sacrifice my employment (or worse) for the most basic founding principle of any open-participatory democracy, ANTI-AUTHORITARIANISM! Better to die, principles intact, with a breathing machine stuffed-down my throat than to submit to a set of duplicitous State officials who are currently dabbling in fascist John A. mandates and a new State form of hard-line paternalistic authoritarianism.

And no-one should want to live in a world where the State exercises blatant forms of State-sanctioned fascist decrees at the expense of democracy and democratic human rights. It is better to give one’s life for anti-authoritarianism and cherished human rights than to live under the fascist thumb of a set of centrist liberal fanatics and their degenerate Statecraft experiments in hard-line totalitarian despotism!

Bottom-line, the spirit of any real science is never despotic.  It only becomes so when the capitalist State apparatus subjugates it for its own political and economic ends. Because, as Feyerabend states, “science [is comprised of] many different [scientific] areas…which are run by people with different interests and, [thus], produce widely differing results”.8  Real science does not require a State-sanctioned shotgun in one’s face in order to be accepted as fact as the grounding factuality of any real science invariably converts rational people to its basic scientific facts over an extended period of time without the threat of unemployment and/or any hard-line anti-democratic mandate or passport.

Only by means of the State and its zombie army of State-approved medical quacks can the creative spirit of scientific study be extinguished and turned into something authoritarian, that is, the tyranny of science over scientific rationality, scientific inquiry, and sound ethics. To quote Feyerabend, it is “by irrational means such as propaganda, emotion,… [that] a blind faith [in any shotgun]…science [becomes]…sound knowledge”.9 In short, as the saying goes, a well-crafted State falsehood has the chance to go half-way around the world before the truth can even get its pants on. Or more apropos, a shoddy shotgun science has the chance to go into the blood-stream of half the world’s population before genuine scientific research can even get its syringe filled and ready to counter the government’s own credentialized snake oil peddlers, namely, the snake oil peddlers of these dubious State-sanctioned shotgun sciences.

All in all, according to Feyerabend, the shotgun sciences are nowadays first and foremost “business enterprises run on business principles”, backed by the power of the State.10  And, when it comes to any shotgun science, the ethics and principles of real science are muted in favor of the profit imperative and the political agenda of the State, which are the central pillars of any shotgun science. The point is power and profit. The point is to manufacture ideological hysteria in service of greater profits and more draconian powers.

Unfortunately, the liberal-centrist State has descended into a form of radical centrist extremism with its injection mandate, passport, and these shotgun sciences. The fact of the matter is we the people are being ideologically massaged by the State and its media outlets daily, so they can change the narrative and cover up their errors, failures, and mishaps through their very own creative statistical experimentations.

VI

In the meantime, by State mandate, the vast majority of the global citizenry line up on the global treadmill of these assembly-line shotgun sciences like Christian parishioners looking for absolution by syringe; i.e., 1 shot, 2 shots, 3 shots, 4 shots etc., endlessly into the future, year after year, with no end in sight, cash registers ringing with sweet delight. Indeed, not until the citizenry is aptly marinaded by the revelry of State ideology and the periodic unexplained fevers and strokes of these new shotgun sciences run-amok can the citizenry be deemed fit for work, fit for public service, and fit for democracy, according to these John A. authoritarian neo-liberals.

Norms about truth and falsehood are based upon ethical decisions. Ethics is the basis that drives real science and real scientific inquiry, and when the ethics are corrupt, duplicitous, and down-right authoritarian, shotgun science is the result. Thus, when any shotgun science, backed by the overwhelming power of the State, is put into practice, it is inevitable that there will be collateral damage; i.e., accidents, accidents conveniently buried by government statistics and propaganda.

In fact, as if by magic, the grim reality of these vaccine accidents will be massaged by the State. They will be given a thorough rubdown by the State. Whereas any damning visible facts will be downplayed by the soothing digital touch of creative statistical massages, care of the mind-numbing propagandists of the State. To quote Feyerabend, “scientific ideas [and empirical data] can be modified in many ways, [since, empirical data]…can be interpreted in a strict way and in more lenient ways. [Ultimately, State] models are [never] direct pictures of reality”, no matter how much the zombie army of State medical quacks repeat this State-sanctioned talking point on cue with ardent religious regularity. There will always be more than one way to fry an egg.11

In the final analysis, any hard-edge scientific facts against the State’s partisan agenda are to be polished clean, care of the many docile, obedient, and hopelessly servile State officials and/or medical professionals looking for a little morsel of media recognition. As a result, any hard-edge scientific facts will be concealed from public view and public scrutiny, hidden conveniently inside the broad general data sets, numbers, and numeric models, paraded before our screens by the functions and operations of State-manicured modeling, devoid of critique and/or dissent because dissent and critique have been outlawed by the State and its partisan media outlets. Like residential schools statistics, the numbers will be massaged in favor of the State and its civil servants. To quote Feyerabend, “empirical evidence is [always] sifted and str’amlined in accordance with [a State-approved] criteria that were [ultimately] developed in a [government] office” so as to serve the State’s partisan agenda rather than the principles of rigorous scientific inquiry. 12

In the end, the State must preserve its purity, sanctity, legitimacy, and supremacy first and foremost, even when it is wrong and/or makes a slew of significant errors along the way. It must always be perceived to be empathetic and on the right side of history, even when it is not. And to do this, the State must have the final say on what constitutes scientific truth. Therefore, according to Feyerabend, “power over minds and institutions [plays an] important…role in [any State] science”, despite the fact that “questions of [scientific] reality are too important to be left [solely] to [the State’s zombie-army of politically pliable] scientists”.13

In truth, the individual must be given reasonable room and freedom to rationally decide what constitutes scientific verity for him or herself without State-sanctioned consequences. Thus, when the State takes an authoritarian paternalistic stance against freedom of choice by outlawing the freedom of choice of individuals, the State shows its true colors. That is, the State shows it is inherently totalitarian, nothing but a mechanism of subjugation, working on behalf of a small aristocracy; i.e., the 1 percent and Big Pharma, against the general-population, namely, the 99 percent, which the State seeks to keep docile, ignorant, and in the dark about the real scientific facts. For Feyerabend, “every [science] has opponents”.14  And when, these opponents are censored, bullied, and/or prevented from freely sharing and freely choosing to abstain, scientific advancement and scientific rationality are short-circuited. They are short-circuited in service of super profits and State ideology. Whereby scientific advancement and scientific rationality are distorted beyond recognition in service of State propaganda, State ideology, and the instant profitability of these weaponized shotgun sciences. For the aboriginal community, this is means a new and improved form of State-sanctioned, John A. bio-colonialism, whereupon, aboriginals and the general-population must donate their bodies, including those of their children, in service of the State, which, like its past, the State denied aboriginals their human rights, not to mention the rights of the general-population.

Conclusion

As the residential school catastrophe has shown, regardless of the immediate costs, the State will never admit wrongdoing or immediate errors in judgment, until generations upon generations have passed on and the initial State-sanctioned trauma has been significantly dulled in people’s minds. Then, and only then, after many decades, with overflowing crocodile tears, akin to the crocodile tears pouring out of any well seasoned actor or actress, the State will offer up a plethora of empty apologies, worthy of a Shakespearean melodrama since its supremacy is now secured and no longer threatened by the obvious ineptitude of its own State-personnel.

Ultimately, whenever the State resorts to totalitarian mechanisms such as shotgun science, vaccine passports, and a get vaxxed or get fired policy, it does so foremost in order “to keep the capitalist production machine going”, in the sense that keeping the capitalist production machine going is the prime objective of the State, not the lives of people, per se.15  The health of people is only a distraction and/or a secondary consideration to corporate interests.

Thus, by forcefully injecting the public with doses upon doses of a shoddy shotgun science, including a constant stream of State-propaganda, according to Feyerabend, it “only shows how little objectivity there is in [these so-called shotgun] scientific arguments”, peddled to us daily by the State’s zombie-army of medical quacks/lackeys.15

It is true, as Feyerabend argues, that  State “science…seems [to be] an irresistible force,…but only if you…give into the PR of the [State] science mafia”, since, in actuality, as Feyerabend articulates, “different sciences have vastly different [voices and] ideologies”.16 In the sense that genuine science is never authoritarian and/or unified. Real science is a plurality. It is open-ended and full of scientific deviations and mutations. To quote Feyerabend, real “science is…complex and heterogeneous”.17 Or more specifically, “there are many different kinds of scientists [and] there are [many] different [ kinds of scientific] opinions”, nothing is truly settled or unanimous in the real sciences, once and for all.18 Real science is always evolving and rewriting its paradigms. It is only the shotgun sciences that are truly unanimous, unitary, and static once and for all, but they are only unanimous, unitary, and static by means of State terror; i.e., the forceful acquiescence of the general-population to a shoddy ineffective science by means of State coercion, namely, by way of the shotgun; i.e., by way of an authoritarian mandate and passport.

When all is said and done, to quote Feyerabend, “the sciences are [never] the last authority” and, even more so, when it concerns the validity of any shotgun science.13  The final authority is always the individual. And to deny and forcefully subjugate the individual to the State is the historical definition of fascism. And, if the barbarism of the residential schools has taught us anything, it is that any fascist-like tyranny, like mandatory injections, must be opposed with every fibre of one’s being no matter the cost, especially if this fascism stems from the authoritarian paternalism of the State. And no matter how benevolent the State and its submissive lackeys paint themselves out to be in the biased mainstream media, the fact of the matter is John A. authoritarian mandates are despotic and piss all over indigenous rights to self-governance and the personal bodily autonomy of the general-population. In essence, the State apparatus is riven with incompetence and mediocrity, as the best and brightest are blocked from the upper echelons of the State apparatus due to the fact that they do not subscribe heart and soul to the dominant State ideology and the religious centrist fanaticism of its State officials, who have lost all scruples to the grand spectacle of bio-colonialism and these shotgun sciences.

All told, true science is conflict. It is a plurality of miniature power struggles in and across a litany of micro-fronts, concerning what is true and what is false, what is ethical and what is not whereby the freedom of the individual always has the final say. To violently repress individual freedom and coercively impose another form of State-sanctioned colonialism; i.e., bio-colonialism, upon aboriginals, or anyone for that matter, is to castrate democracy and  transform all indigenous rights, and all human rights into a joke, a falsity without consistency in its application.

Overall, real science is one of the most important theaters of power struggle, that is, the power struggle in between the 1 percent and the 99 percent. And the pandemic has only intensified these power struggles, having clearly demonstrated that the State invariably sides with the 1 percent and the economy against the 99 percent and its bodily autonomy.  In the age of totalitarian capitalism, the State delivers its health services and recovery benefits by means of terror, that is, by means of a sawed-off shotgun, the sawed-off shotgun of State-sanctioned unemployment and the terror of financial ruin.

My Body! My Land! My Governance!

Postscript

The most vile aspects of history tend to repeat themselves in new disguises, and like John A. Macdonald before, we the people are witness once again to a State government stomping on aboriginal rights and people’s rights to self-governance and bodily autonomy. The State is attempting to purge non-compliant people from employment, so as to reassert its power against a segment of the population it seeks to utterly destroy financially. Thus, we must break the ideological spell of the State, its despotism, and its latest doctored platitudes that seem to indicate that the vast majority of people are devoid of critical thinking and lack any adequate understanding of what actually constitutes human rights!

Any time the State resorts to John A. authoritarian mandates, whether it is mandated residential school attendance or mandated vaccinations, the State is partaking in an excessive use of force against a minority, a minority of the population, which the State sees fit to exterminate and humiliate so as to safeguard and enlarge its power and supremacy into the future. The State has learnt nothing from the mandated atrocities it has sanctioned in the past! Thus, it is doomed to repeat another set of discriminatory acts, because, once again, it puts its faith in John A. authoritarian mandates against a minority, a specific segment of the general-population it seeks to crush into acquiescence.

All told, having sufficiently learnt the lessons of my residential school ancestors, there will be no reconciliation here! I will not submit to another anti-aboriginal John A. authoritarian mandate, imposed by a government out of control and out of its mind, whatever the cost! Due to the fact that the State and its government lackeys are clearly high on liberal ideology and fascist bio-accelerations. And now, the State is functioning and operating beyond the pale of reasonable restraint and any decent human conduct. Sunny ways have devolved into an authoritarian nightmare! And if the State does not return from the brink of authoritarian catastrophe, it will have to be forcefully demolished, one way or another.

Because  I will not be marinaded ad nauseam by any type of State-sanctioned fast food shotgun science! I will not be another guinea pig, another faceless numeric bar code on a cell phone, another compliant pin cushion of a failed State, attempting to line the pockets of Big Pharma; i.e., those corporate aristocrats who are really calling the shots inside those so-called liberal governments of the world!

All in all, we are faced with an anti-democratic, authoritarian-paternalist State right now. And it has learnt nothing from John A. Macdonald and his degenerate daddy-knows-best, authoritarian genocidal fascism, that is, the unmitigated terror of his authoritarian residential school mandates! Therefore, faced with the Government’s get vaxxed or get fired policy, I can only raise my fists to the sky and yell out with certain conviction, resolve, and an inflexible iron will:

BY ANY MEANS NECESSARY!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

  1. Paul Feyerabend, The Tyranny Of Science, ed. Eric Oberheim (Malden, MA, USA: Polity Press, 1996)  p. 56.
  2. Ibid, p. 56.
  3. Ibid, p. 74.
  4. Jean-Francois Lyotard, The Postmodern Condition, trans. Brian Massumi, Minneapolis: University of Minnesota Press, 1999, p. 64.
  5. Paul Feyerabend, Against Method, (London, England: Verso, 2010) p. 204.
  6. Ibid, p. 203.
  7. Paul Feyerabend, The Tyranny of Science, ed. Eric Oberheim (Malden, MA, USA: Polity Press, 1996) pp. 73-74.
  8. Ibid. p. 9.
  9. Paul Feyerabend, Against Method, (London, England: Verso, 2010) p. 113.
  10. Paul Feyerabend, The Tyranny of Science, ed. Eric Oberheim (Malden, MA, USA: Polity Press, 1996) p. 73.
  11. Ibid, p. 50.
  12. Ibid, p. 47.
  13. Ibid, p. 51.
  14. Ibid, p. 66.
  15. Ibid, p. 53.
  16. Ibid, p. 55.
  17. Paul Feyerabend, Against Method, (London, England: Verso, 2010) p. 105.
  18. Paul Feyerabend, The Tyranny of Science, ed. Eric Oberheim (Malden, MA, USA: Polity Press, 1996) p. 57.
The post Shotgun Science and Bio-Colonialism first appeared on Dissident Voice.

Will Trudeau’s Act of Desperation Succeed?

I want to address the prime minister: No matter what you do, we will hold the line. There are no threats which will frighten us. We will hold the line.

— Tamara Lich, convoy organizer, 14 February 2022

Canada’s Charter of Rights

Justin Trudeau had cornered himself by grotesquely smearing the trucker convoy and its supporters as racist, misogynist, fringe, anti-science, vandals, and otherwise holding unacceptable views. He is unable to negotiate a peaceful outcome because he has refused to speak to the pro-freedom/anti-mandate protest movement.

Many of the truckers have insisted they aren’t leaving the capital of Ottawa. This is despite Trudeau trying his darndest to get them to leave. In addition to his invective against the truckers, he tried to have their funding cut off, he had jerry cans bringing fuel to the truckers seized, and he beefed up the police presence to cower them. All to no avail.

Meanwhile, Trudeau’s popularity has been tanking among Canadians. Desperate, he resorted to a nuclear option from his father Pierre Trudeau’s days. In Pierre’s case, he invoked the War Measures Act during the October Crisis in 1970 to fight the FLQ (Front de libération du Québec), terrorists seeking Quebec’s separation from Canada. The FLQ had kidnapped British diplomat James Cross and Quebec labor minister Pierre Laporte, the latter being killed by the FLQ.

The situation in Pierre’s day was decidedly different from the situation now for Justin’s invocation of, what is now called, the Emergencies Act. Justin has undertaken an extraordinary action to grab extra powers to handle the pro-freedom protests across the country. Perversely, Justin’s power grab would further diminish freedoms. One can only imagine how the truckers, who have vowed not to leave Ottawa until the mandates are removed, will react to the increased diminution of freedoms.

One side will be crushed in this final showdown.

“It is now clear that there are serious challenges to law enforcement’s ability to effectively enforce the law,” said Trudeau.

Effectively enforcing constitutional law is what former Newfoundland premier Brian Peckford is seeking, citing Justin’s mandates as abrogating Canada’s Charter of Rights. These charter rights were enacted by Pierre Trudeau’s government along with nine provinces, one of which was Peckford’s.

Justin Trudeau calls the emergency measures “reasonable and proportionate to the threats they are meant to address.”

Is the convoy a threat? Up to now, the demonstration has been peaceful. However, the convoy poses a threat to the political viability of Justin Trudeau. And as for threats, Trudeau’s tweet sounds eerily close to a threat, even toward the kids of truckers:

Make no mistake: The border cannot, and will not, remain closed. Every option is on the table. So, if you’re participating in these illegal blockades that are taking our neighbourhoods and our economy hostage, it’s time to go home – especially if you have your kids with you.

The Emergencies Act also allows the government to direct banks to freeze money for the protestors.

Cryptocurrency exchanges surely welcome such an action.

To invoke the Emergencies Act, the government must demonstrate that a state of emergency exists, and it must be approved by the parliament within seven days.

Errol Mendes, a professor of constitutional and international law at the University of Ottawa, opined, “If you look at what’s happened not just in Ottawa but at the Ambassador Bridge and Coutts, Alberta and in BC, essentially we have a national emergency.”

The Canadian Civil Liberties Association (CCLA) demurs:

The federal government has not met the threshold necessary to invoke the Emergencies Act. This law creates a high and clear standard for good reason: the Act allows government to bypass ordinary democratic processes. This standard has not been met.

Mendes argues that asking poses a national security threat: “You have this small group basically asking the government to do whatever they want. That’s the national security problem.”

It is true that relative to the Canadian population the truckers are a small group. However, that argument applies more so to the federal government. The members of parliament are a small group demanding, not asking, Canadians comply with mandates.

For whatever likes on a tweet are worth, the CCLA tweet (14 February 5:36 PM) has received 52.3 K likes while Trudeau’s tweet (14 February 8:36 PM) making clear the government’s position has received 5470 likes.

Granted, it is a ballsy move by Trudeau, but even more ballsy has been the “righteous dissidence” of the convoy of truckers in taking on the government and its gendarmes by behaving peacefully, being friendly, and keeping the streets clean. Crime has dropped during the protest.

The lines have been drawn. One of two likely outcomes will likely prevail: either Canadians will sacrifice their freedoms and comply with the mandates or the mandates will be repealed and Trudeau will have to step down.

The post Will Trudeau’s Act of Desperation Succeed? first appeared on Dissident Voice.

To the Victor Go the Spoils

As you know, I have other gigs, other ways to express ideas, and construct my own analysis in my own life. Experiences turned into philosophy. Or, anti-philosophy to invent self.

This piece is in the local rag, again, Newport, Lincoln County, Oregon. On the coast. (see story/Op-ed below — Newport News Times.)

Yes, the world is a microcosm in places wherever you find yourself, if you are willing to explore how universality is a common thread for most people, excluding the elites and rich and super-rich and sociopaths in those classes as well as down and dirty people born from a bad seed or with the evil encased in DNA. If you are willing to believe that not all humanity and all cultures frame their needs and wants and goals the same, but that we mostly want peace, prosperity, justice and a safe, clean, working world.

You can look at, say, Israel, and see that that apartheid state, that colony, well, the roots are there to apply the same sort of overall logic of oppression and land theft and human subjugation we see in the White United States of America. Imagine, ripping land away from people — Original Peoples — and then creating a policy of civilian (white) patrols and military patrols as part of an eradication policy to rid people of their ancestral land, but to rid the people altogether. Call it Indian Removal, Pacification or Assimulation, but like modern day “Israel,” the policy then was to remove people from being. From a future. From their right to travel freely. The system then got legalized, full of the lies of governments breaking treaties (all of them) to facilitate Manifest Destiny and Expansion for the rich. Those sociopaths I allude to above!

Now, again, more patronizing “month” number 12 to give lip service to Black people of this land. Black History Month now, in a time of right-wing hate of alternative (real) history and overall white disgust for the lives of Blacks now and Blacks then. This month of Netflix Black specials and other lip service fandangos seem like another blip on the screen of this out and out systemic and over hatred of people questioning their place here.

Black Lives Matter — the movement — was better than, well, nothing, and, sure, capitalism and egoism did take it down the ugly road of cooption and Hollywoodization. But. Yes, police are murderers, and so is the military, and then, defacto, we as taxpayers and citizens are part of that murder inc. See-speak-hear-rebuff no evil? Amerikkkaaah.

Then, this concept of wanting a campus with some semblance of “pacification” makes sense in this time of outright bigotry. Cancel Culture is an outgrowth of the fear porn Media have served up. Ivory Tower pencil necks, many of them in the Chosen Few class, they have messed up college, for sure. Bowing to elites, to the professional managerial class, and then fawning the super-stars of Capitalism, well, that’s the new normal for millions.

But throwing out the babies with the bathwater, that is the new normal with blogs, podcasts, YouTube shows, and infinite blathering on Instagram and TikTok lambasting everything tied to liberalism, to socialism, to a new way forward.

If you were to come back from the dead, say, dead in 1957, there would be an amazing schizophrenia buzzing in your head with all of the noise, the digital dimwit traffic, all of it, bombarding you dead sucker each second of the resurrection. To believe universities would not be subject to virtue signaling and cancel culturing, and to believe that snowflake making would not be the outgrowth of this dastardly warring, mean, racist society, that is, if you don’t get cause and effect, the why and how, then you have had to have lived in a toxic bubble of echo after echo of your own malfeasance.

What is good about Black Empowerment and Black History is certainly demonstrated by folks over at Hood Communist and Black Agenda Report, to name just a few. Black Alliance for Peace is another group. But most people do not tie into those sites, those thinkers on those sites.

The problem is that in USA, everything is turned into celebrity fawning or celebrity denigrating. Of course, Whoopi Goldberg is too rich and too stupid to understand what she was attempting to say on that stupid show about the Holocaust not being about race. She gets suspended for two weeks. Bizarre. All of it. The fact I am writing about it!

Of course, we have endless prattling and war mongering from African Americans, who should know what their place has been in the eyes of all administrations, even the one with the mixed race Obama. Blacks do not live in a democracy, and Biden is a racist, and, the systems in this country are against Black empowerment. And, yes, against worker empowerment. Against all people of color and those whites, too.

The U.S. Black Political Class and War

What passes for leadership is always a joke played upon Black people. The high water mark of the CBC being the “conscience of the congress” is long gone. No one can look to them on the issue of Ukraine or anything else. The people must restore the historical Black radical consensus as a matter of survival.  —

“It all makes sense” that in 2022, with the fear porn of billionaires and millionaires holding a thousand axes above our heads, those of us in the 80 Percent Class, with the Holly-Dirt engine of triple lies, with the Media in bed with the Deep-Shallow-Military State, with lab coat-wearing billionaires getting platforms to yammer on and on about universal yearly vaccinations for everything on planet earth; with the world going digital before our very eyes, with privatization on steroids; with a world so confused and dazed it collapses every minute;  and with the gear work of the slick and $2000 an hour racists working their magic to get the masses, the working class, the middle class, all lathered up and hateful against youth, the old, the homeless, BIPOC, educated, uneducated, sick, worn down, poor, all of this and more, as I say, it all makes sense that we are on a collision course of lack of solidarity. Big Time.

Try talking sense to anyone, and the conversation ends up spiraling into a cesspool of, well, Americana Amnesia. Americans the Children. Americans the Red-White-Blue Consumers. Americans the Nanny-Held Citizens. All those Americans Making a Buck Anyway Possible. A Little Bit of Poison in Air-Water-Soil-Food? The price to pay for capitalism. Capitalism with a big C for CANCER.

Remember, mostly, though, this America was created by religious zealots, by profiteers, mercenaries, Christian extremists, racists, superstition peddlers, peddling PR and smear and lies with a sucker is born every minute snake oil and poison gruel for children ethos.

Capitalism is the outgrowth of that theft of land and deployment of slaves to till the land, plant the crops, harvest the cotton, etc., etc.

Black History Month My Ass! We need daily rolling strikes. Shut them down, these planned pandemic psychopaths. Shut down these hoarders, these Bezos Yacht Boys. Shut the Musk Military Magic down. All of them need to be, well, you know, Exterminate All THOSE Brutes!

Black History Month Through the Eye of the Needle 

It’s an adage by P.T. Barnum:  “A sucker is born every minute.” In the USA, there are so many suckers now who don’t know their country’s history. It takes people from other countries to give them our history lessons.

When it comes to the struggles of Latinos, Asians, Native Americans and African-Americans, the racist systems in place – even in 2022 – work to continue making Americans more ignorant.

I’ve been teaching for going on 50 years. I’ve mentored many in community colleges, universities, K12, special programs for gifted and talented, gang intervention projects, refugee centers, military compounds, prisons, and homeless programs.

In a public arena where debate should take place by deploying critical thinking and rhetorical skills, most people who espouse banning books, who have no idea what the history of the USA is through the eyes of minorities or women, and who have no clue about other countries, I find can’t hold onto their prejudices and biases when up against smart, schooled and experienced debaters.

I’ve had many a run-in and debate with racists, sexists, and bigots. One thing they have in common is fear permeated with an undeserved sense of entitlement.

We’ve reached a point in the USA where dumb-downing vis-à-vis superficiality, lack of reading, a disregard for community engagement, and all that poisonous influence of “entertainment” consumed have created a large section of Americans who have zero concept of the power to change.

There is no doubt this country is based on exploitation, land theft, breaking every treaty signed with the First Nations tribes. This is a country that rose to success through slave labor – black slave labor. This is a country determined to expand by hook or by crook through Manifest Destiny and Imperial overreach.

It’s not to say other countries do not have these damning elements to their pasts. The point is, though, Americans are in a paradigm shift of consciousness. Black History Month is just one of many “months” or weeks to rethink bad history, lies and propaganda perpetrated by the dominant race.  Native American Heritage Month and banned book week are two topics I have explored here.

The issue at hand is, of course, February’s Black History Month. The work of researchers, internationally-traveled writers, educators, philosophers, anthropologists and sociologists is solid around this emerging history.

There is no Critical Race Theory conspiracy to denigrate the “white race.”

Paul Robeson — singer, athlete, actor, and, socialist Black man — stated:  “My father was a slave and my people died to build this country and I am going to stay here and have a part of it just like you….  The answer to injustice is not to silence the critic but to end the injustice.”

I consider Black intellectual, Cornel West, a friend, and I’ve marched with him in Seattle during Occupy Seattle. At Green River College, where I taught, we filled an auditorium with people wanting to hear him. I’ve written a story on him.

He’s smart, Christian, ministerial, deep into music, a writer and a public thinker. He is not a fan of Obama, Bush, Biden, Trump or Clinton. I know no person who is an avowed racist, white supremacist, or on a spectrum of angry history-denying white person I have taught and counseled who really could argue themselves out of a paper bag when faced with anti-racists. Think of anti-racists like Angela Davis (writer, Black Panther, educator) or Raoul Peck (filmmaker of HBO’s “Exterminate All the Brutes”) or Gary Howard (“We Can’t Teach What We Don’t Know: White Teachers, Multiracial Schools”).

I’ve been in Gary’s diversity workshops in Tacoma, and I have been in trainings with others, like Brown Eagle with Spokane’s Medicine Wheel Academy. I’ve worked with Winona LaDuke and have been a counselor for African-American ex-New Orleans Saints Toussaint Tyler.

Everywhere I have lived, worked and taught at I’ve found myself in a milieu of learning about other people: people that historians have lied about, that is, those whose ability to be humans and citizens in this country has been systematically thwarted through vicious systems of oppression. List some of them as sundown laws, red lining and overt racism and lynching.

When I taught mostly white students at Gonzaga University, many had never known the story of Emmett Till, the boy who was murdered by racists, and whose body was dumped in a river with a cotton gin fan wrapped around his neck.

His mother had an open casket funeral attended by thousands in Chicago. He was kidnapped, shot and disfigured by white guys because of a “wolf whistle” directed at one of the cracker’s wives. They got off free. However, with so much entitlement, they were paid for a magazine article and admitted to torturing and killing the 14-year-old Emmett August 28, 1955.

The entire world heard about Emmett’s case. His disfigured face was photographed by dozens of journalists. His murder by racist whites in Mississippi kick-started the civil rights movement, even before Rosa Parks refused to sit at the back of the bus.

I was 19 years old when President Ford officially recognized Black History Month in 1976. Plain old white guy Gerald Ford stated he wanted all Americans to “seize the opportunity to honor the too-often neglected accomplishments of Black Americans in every area of endeavor throughout our history.”

This was a no-brainer for me. My old man, in the Army for 32 years, recounted how three of his servicemen were refused food in Kentucky. That eatery then became off-limits for soldiers. There was a big movement to list all other places that refused service to Blacks, Latinos, Asians and Native Americans.

That was before I was born. It’s great to have these celebrations for Blacks’ accomplishments, but really, overlooked and denied now is the price African Americans have paid to reach their aims. Sometimes these struggles to live, work, vote, and excel were set into stone by racist courts, racist businesses, and racist communities.

Change is always in the wind. Let’s hope more Americans get smart sooner than later. People live their histories. Listen to them.

The post To the Victor Go the Spoils first appeared on Dissident Voice.

Annihilating the Virus Enemy in Japan

Men wearing Japanese imperial military uniform visit the Yasukuni Shrine in Tokyo, Japan August 15, 2019, on the 74th anniversary of Japan’s surrender in World War Two. REUTERS/Kim Kyung-Hoon TPX IMAGES OF THE DAY

According to Japan’s Ministry of Health, Labor and Welfare, 18,515 people had lost their lives to the severe acute respiratory syndrome coronavirus 2 (SARS-CoV-2) by 24 January 2022. Of those deaths, four were minors, i.e., 19 years of age or younger. At this point, nobody can say exactly why the Archipelago of Japan has emerged relatively unscathed by the virus, but it has been clear for many months that Japanese have little to worry about.

Somehow, however, this has not translated into victory celebrations or a round of applause for government health officials for preventing a public health disaster, or much praise for the residents of Japan for their very diligent cooperation with government health guidelines. Indeed, the panicked language continues, such that we were recently told by journalists that Japan is “bracing” for the omicron variant. The government is now considering vaccine booster shots for everyone, not just health workers. The Nation’s borders were sealed quickly and tightly when omicron emerged in November. And even now we are told that we need greater security, and that local and national government agencies are willing and able to provide it, as long as we all trust and obey them.

With full awareness of the relatively low lethality of the virus, there is still widespread fear and a (mis)recognition that we are all in an exceptional situation now, one that will require, for our own health, greater austerity and sacrifices, and even more violations of Japan’s constitution. Nicknamed the Peace Constitution and promulgated in 1947, it is not yet clear whether it will be weakened through a “state of exception” in which the constitution is set aside “temporarily,” or through “amendment by interpretation,” or through actual legal revision, but what now appears almost inevitable is that elite ultranationalist forces in government will continue to take advantage of the present crisis to weaken the human-rights-defending potential of the Constitution, deprive the people of their civil liberties, and dismantle Japan’s fragile democracy.

With awareness of COVID-19’s impact on class struggle, we are now beginning to get a picture of who the losers and winners in Japan might ultimately be. Some of the key winners may include pharmaceutical and biotech companies, big business in general, universities and companies with public-private partnerships, liberal intellectuals in the fields of medicine and economics, pro-U.S. factions, and the ultranationalist political party Nippon Ishin no Kai (“Japan Innovation Party”), who are considering calling for the creation of an emergency situation clause in the Constitution. The losers will probably include not only the working class but also single mothers, victims of domestic violence, homeless people, small business owners and employees, immigrants, asylum seekers, and children without parents or with parents who cannot take care of them.

Healthy hygiene is important for us all, but we have to be careful that this discourse does not cause a loss of freedom, such as what we saw with the obsession with terrorism and national security after 9/11. Many people believe that a nation-state is supposed to achieve health security in the same way that it is supposed to achieve national security, i.e., by annihilating the enemy. If we are not careful, a similar bloodthirsty logic can take over, whether the enemy is a country, a terrorist, an insect, or a virus. Whether you use a nuclear bomb, a pesticide, or an mRNA vaccine, when the people are in a warring mood, the goal becomes annihilating the foreign Other. This is key to understanding COVID-19 deceptions.

Giorgio Agamben (1942-), the philosopher who, for many years, has deeply probed the question of the political uses of movements for greater “biosecurity,” emphasizes how the state exaggerates the bio-threats, just as it exaggerated terrorism and advertises itself as the savior of the people. He writes that “We could argue that, once terrorism ceased to exist as a cause for measures of exception, the invention of an epidemic offers the ideal pretext for widening them beyond all known limits” (Where Are We Now? The Epidemic as Politics, Valeria Dani, trans., Kindle edition [Rowman & Littlefield, 2021] p. 13). The “limitation of freedom” that is imposed by governments seems limitless, just as the desire for security is limitless (Where Are We Now? p. 38). Governments tell us that we need more security, we believe them, we desire more security, and then they intervene to satisfy that desire. (I have previously discussed the state of exception in Japan here). Just as governments were supposed to be the only ones who could protect us from terrorism, especially after 9/11, now they tell us that only they can protect us from nature.

The following quote often attributed to the Nazi war criminal Hermann Göring (1893-1946) seems appropriate for today. “Voice or no voice, the people can always be brought to the bidding of the leaders. That is easy. All you have to do is tell them they are being attacked and denounce the pacifists for lack of patriotism and exposing the country to danger. It works the same way in any country.” Many advocates of peace are aware of this problem, how states gain power by exaggerating threats from the outsiders within our communities and from people in foreign countries. Fear of the unknown plays into their hands.

More specifically, the system or the “regime” that we are now struggling under is the modern ideology of the plague that was famously described by Michel Foucault in Discipline and Punish: The Birth of the Prison (1975) and other works. This is aptly explained by Carlos Salzani:

It has been noted that the COVID-19 pandemic is a biopolitical dream (or rather nightmare) come true—and in fact Foucault’s poignant analyses of the intertwined evolution of politics and medicine in modernity have been evoked from the very beginning. To describe the mutations of power between the seventeenth and eighteenth century, Foucault tellingly used three models based precisely on infectious diseases. In the lecture on 15 January 1975 of his 1974-1975 course at the Collège de France titled [“Abnormal”] and, more in depth, in the opening of the chapter on panopticism of Discipline and Punish (published a month later, in February 1975), he counterpoised the management of leprosy and that of the plague as two distinct modalities of control and organization: whereas the former required the leper’s exclusion from society, the latter installed a disciplinary mechanism that mobilized society in its totality. Both models, Foucault noted, are very ancient, but in a sense at the dawn of modernity the plague model became prevalent. According to Foucault’s by-now famous distinction, the exclusion of lepers (premodern power) is a negative model based on rejection and prohibition and pursuing the dream of purifying the community; the plague model (modern, disciplinary power), to the contrary, is a positive technology of power demanding the inclusion of the infected within a space meticulously analyzed, partitioned, organized, and controlled, with the concomitant production of an appropriate knowledge. Exclusion is replaced by quarantine, rejection by inclusion and the assignment to each individual of a proper name and a proper place. The goal is no longer that of purifying the community but rather of producing a healthy population. This model contradicts the “literary dream of the plague,” all those political fables (like Camus’ or Saramago’s) which liken the plague to orgiastic outbursts of lawlessness, disorder, and confusion; the “political dream of the plague” is instead precisely the contrary, “the marvelous moment when political power is exercised to the full. Plague is the moment when the spatial partitioning and subdivision (quadrillage) of a population is taken to its extreme point.” In truth, the plague is met by order, discipline, hierarchy, control: “The plague-stricken town […] is the utopia of the perfectly governed city.” (Author’s italics).

Salzani explains that Foucault defined biopolitics as “the peculiarly modern political focus on the preservation of life,” and notes that this goes back to Cicero’s words, Salus populi suprema lex esto. (The health/safety of the people should be the supreme law). In “An Essay concerning the True Original, Extent and End of Civil Government” (1690) John Locke wrote, “Salus populi suprema lex is certainly so just and fundamental a rule, that he who sincerely follows it cannot dangerously err.” And every American knows from our “Declaration of Independence” that we have the right to “life, liberty and the pursuit of happiness.” Many people are familiar with the words, “That to secure these rights, governments are instituted among men, deriving their just powers from the consent of the governed.” And ominously from the perspective of government officials, the Declaration also told us that “whenever any form of government becomes destructive of these ends, it is the right of the people to alter or to abolish it.”

But the “Declaration of Independence” does not claim that safety and health are supreme, that they are far more important than liberty and the pursuit of happiness. There are limits to how much safety should be demanded, especially in times and places where governments do not respect human rights or democracy. Too much emphasis on safety can permanently damage democratic institutions. As the Japanese internist Dr. Irohira Tetsurō has argued, it is not possible for a society to simultaneously enjoy freedom of expression, freedom of profit, and zero [coronavirus] infections (Japanese weekly magazine, Shūkan Kinyōbi 1322 [26 March 2021] p. 34). Just as in China, some politicians in Japan have advocated the dangerous social goal of “zero corona.”

Kiuchi Minoru, like many politicians of the largely ultranationalist ruling party LDP, expressed worry about what would happen if Japan’s national legislative assembly did “not function when an urgent response is required.” Many Japanese believe that quick responses from the government will be necessary in the future when pandemics and natural disasters occur. This kind of concern was behind the 2020 revision of the 2012 Act on Special Measures against Novel Influenza, etc. (Shingata infuruenza tō taisaku tokubetsu sochi hō), which is now often abbreviated as the “Special Measures Law” in English. (The English translation of the law can be found on the page entitled “Japanese Law Translation” at the website of the Ministry of Justice). This Special Measures Law was revised on 13 March 2020 by the Diet (i.e., Japan’s national legislative assembly). In the midst of the crisis presented by the new coronavirus, the Diet granted the prime minister “the authority to declare a state of emergency in the event of the spread of an infectious disease that could gravely affect people’s lives.”

The next day, on 14 March, the revision came into effect, and Prime Minister Abe Shinzō gave a speech saying that the new law would prevent the spread of the virus and that the government would be asking the public to accept “substantial difficulties and inconveniences.”

At first glance, this new Special Measures Law sounds like a fair and reasonable response to a dangerous virus, until one recalls that the “state of emergency,” or “state of exception,” is precisely how the Nazis of Germany got their start. Some Japanese scholars of law have pointed out the danger of such a thing happening in Japan, such as the scholar of modern German history, Professor Ishida Yūji at the Graduate School of the University of Tokyo. The Weimar Constitution was once thought of as the most democratic constitution in the world, but it was through the abuse of the state of emergency clause (Article 48), which gave the president the power to issue an emergency decree, that Adolf Hitler rose to power. According to the Holocaust Encyclopedia,

Embedded within the Weimar Constitution was an article that encompassed the right/left political tension and would be fundamental to Adolf Hitler’s rise to power. This was Article 48, which stated that “If public security and order are seriously disturbed or endangered within the German Reich, the President of the Reich may take measures necessary for their restoration, intervening if need be with the assistance of the armed forces.” It also allowed the President to suspend civil liberties guaranteed in the Weimar Constitution.

This was the Constitution’s “fatal flaw,” and it is probably also what Asō Tarō referred to as the “Nazi Trick.” Asō, one of the right-hand men of the former prime minister Abe, is presently the Deputy Prime Minister and Minister of Finance. In 2013 he made the notorious suggestion, “Why don’t we learn from that (Nazi) trick?” (Various translations appeared in English). He made this statement in connection with the debate over the revision of the Constitution.

Ishida explains:

The fact that a minister who made such a comment and undermined the trust of the nation is able to retain his post shows the true nature of the [Abe] administration. The LDP [Liberal Democratic Party] will use this experience to try to write an emergency clause into the Constitution… A state of emergency gives the government the authority to suspend the normal constitutional legal order (i.e., separation of powers and the guarantee of human rights) and take emergency measures in emergency situations such as war, civil war, depression, and major disasters.

Ishida is the author of two books in Japanese relating to this fatal flaw in the Weimar constitution. He is the author of Hitler and Nazi Germany (Hitoraa to Nachi Doitsu [Kodansha Gendai Shinsho, 2015]) and the co-author with Hasebe Yasuo of Nazi “Tricks” and the State of Emergency Clause (Nachisu no “teguchi” to kinkyūjitai jokō [Shūeisha shinsho, 2017]). Thus it is not surprising that he was one of the first to raise the alarm when the Special Measures Law was revised in March 2020. For Ishida it was “incomprehensible” that all of the opposition parties, with the exception of the Communist Party and the Reiwa Shinsengumi, voted in favor of this law, when it does not require the prime minister to obtain prior approval from the Diet, who are the representatives of the people, when declaring a state of emergency. He said that the original 2012 law should have been corrected regardless of the fact that it was passed under the administration of the Democratic Party of Japan (Minshutō, a liberal opposition party to the left of the ruling LDP). This law gives the executive branch the authority to place restrictions on the fundamental rights of the citizens. He argues that it could easily wind up allowing Japan’s ultranationalist government to completely abandon the Constitution.

Hitler’s government, formed in January of 1933, was a coalition between the Nazi Party and the German National People’s Party (who were traditional conservatives). The Nazi Party had received 33.1% of the vote, so Hitler’s government initially came into power as a minority government. On 27 February 1933 the parliament building went up in flames. This was the famous “Reichstag Fire,” which happened just before election day (on 5 March). An atmosphere of panic and terror followed, and the Nazis blamed the fire on the communists.

On the day after the fire, the “Emergency Decree for the Protection of the German People” was passed. This was a declaration of a state of emergency. Democratic institutions were suspended, freedom of speech was restricted, and the right to own property and the right to trial before imprisonment were removed.

A month after the state of emergency was declared, on 24 March, the Enabling Act (Gesetz zur Behebung der Not von Volk und Reich, or “Law to Remedy the Distress of People and Reich”]) was rammed through the Reichstag. This law granted legislative power to the Hitler Cabinet. Hitler could now rule by decree. By July, Hitler and the Nazi Party had managed to establish a one-party system, with the Nazis as the sole ruling power. This was only six months after the Nazis had taken the reins of government. The parliament gradually ceased to function as a true legislature, to the extent that people wondered why the Reichstag even existed.

Ishida suspects that the government of Japan is likewise doing rehearsals for a state of emergency clause that would allow prime ministers to side-step the constitution. His warnings about Japan’s state-of-emergency legislative changes echo the those of Giorgio Agamben, who warned in 2020 and earlier that making the state of exception as permanent as possible is one of the primary goals of getting people to panic about biosecurity. According to Agamben, health security used to be “at the margins of political calculations” but is now becoming an “essential component of state and international political strategies” (Where Are We Now? p. 55). What certain politicians may now be hoping for is a permanent state of emergency.

Former Lower House Speaker Ibuki Fumiaki said at a meeting for an LDP faction on 12 March 2020, the day before the Special Measures Law was revised, that we must not “play too much or drink too much.” Suzuki Miho, the Mainichi journalist who interviewed Ishida, wrote that this statement reminded her of the World War II-era slogan in Japan “We will sacrifice everything for the victory” (Hoshigarimasen, katsu made wa), and she sensed anxiety about the virus among the people. With little known about it, there is an atmosphere of people coerced into enduring their suffering.

It does seem that when people are so focused on contributing to a “war effort,” they can easily lose awareness of the fact that their rights are being stolen from them. On 7 April 2020, a few weeks after the Special Measures Law became law, Abe did declare a state of emergency, making use of his new power under the revised law. Even at that early point, Abe wielded the mighty authority to restrict people’s right to freedom of movement and assembly. Yet, Ishida notes, a poll conducted by the Mainichi on the following day, indicated that 72% of the respondents approved of Abe’s declaration, and only 20% disapproved.

Another troubling feature of the Special Measures Law for Ishida is that it allows for a wide range of compulsory measures to be taken, such as requests to refrain from mingling with other people outside one’s home; restrictions on the use of schools and assembly halls; the prime minister’s new power to give instructions to NHK (Japan’s national broadcaster); and his power to expropriate land, buildings, and supplies. He warns that the day may not be far off when rallies and demonstrations become impossible, when people “clam up” no matter how dissatisfied they are with the government. In his view, too, Japan’s Diet is now weak, as was the Reichstag when Hitler became chancellor.

Many lawyers have made statements against the Special Measures Law, too. The Japan Federation of Bar Associations (JFBA), an organization of lawyers with 42,991 members, opposed it, in fact. Their concern was not with the parallels with Nazi history or the state of exception but with the negative effects on COVID-19 patients and businesses. They worry that patients may be stigmatized and human rights may be violated:

Anyone may contract COVID-19 because of its significant transmissibility. People infected do not deserve blame for their contraction of the virus, whereas the amendment bill presented this time ignores such circumstances and seeks to impose obligations by means of punishment without adequate deliberation. It neglects the aims of and the historical background to the legislation of the Infectious Diseases Act and makes light of the fundamental human rights of those who are affected by infectious diseases.

This is exactly the situation that Agamben describes when writing, “the citizen no longer has a right to health (‘health safety’) but is instead forced by law to be healthy (‘biosecurity’)” (Where Are We Now? p. 56).

As the JFBA statement explains, in the past “…there was groundless discrimination or prejudice” against patients suffering from Hansen’s disease, (AIDS), and other infectious diseases in Japan. That is “the historical background to the legislation of the Infectious Diseases Act.” (The full name of the Infectious Diseases Act is the “Act on the Prevention of Infectious Diseases and Medical Care for Patients with Infectious Diseases,” or Kansenshō no yobō oyobi kansenshō no kanja ni taisuru iryō ni kan suru hōritsu. This law has been part of Japan’s infectious disease surveillance system since 1 April 1999. The JFBA opposes both these laws, the Infectious Diseases Act and the Special Measures Act). The JFBA statement also cites violations of worker’s rights, such as dismissals of unvaccinated workers; increases in hate speech against minorities; and people infected with COVID being unable to vote.

The Special Measures Law was established at a time when Japanese perceived, correctly or incorrectly, that Japan needed more biosecurity, and many people were unaware of the fact that a “state of exception,” in the sense of an ideological operation, was in the works. Although historians like Ishida and lawyers such as those with the JFBA have raised concerns, Japan’s journalists are not problematizing this law.

Yet, the Special Measures Law may be the greatest threat to Japan’s Peace Constitution in decades. This is because it opens the way for a state of exception in which prime ministers and prefectural governors possess the authority to issue decrees that have the effect of a law. While the Peace Constitution still exists, prime ministers and prefectural governors are able to do things during an official state of emergency that they could not normally do. However weak or gentle such decrees may appear, they could set the stage for much more Draconian decrees in the future, and there is no guarantee that future prime ministers and governors will not abuse their new power.

This Special Measures Law may even weaken the authority of the Diet, and violate Article 41, which says, “The Diet shall be the highest organ of state power, and shall be the sole law-making organ of the State.” Contrary to Article 41, the Special Measures Law gives the prime minister the authority to suspend certain articles of the constitution whenever there is a war, economic crisis, or pandemic. Setting aside the constitution in this way is dangerous because there is no clear end in sight. Japan has had at least three major crises in the last two decades: 9/11, “3/11” (the 2011 Tōhoku earthquake and tsunami), and the 2020 coronavirus crisis, and as a result of all three, the Constitution has been violated and rights have been trampled on.

Who can be sure, for example, that what happened to Japan and Germany during WWII, where people like Adolf Eichmann (1906-62) and Tōjō Hideki (1884-1948) went about their work calmly and confidently organizing massacres as if they were harvesting cabbage, will not happen again. Under a state of exception, when the constitution is repeatedly ignored, powerful officials are often in a position where they are able to say with a straight face that they are just following orders. No illegal acts are committed because the constitution is no longer in effect. In the case of Japan now, coronavirus justice depends solely on the judgment of a small number of individuals, primarily the prime minister and the regional governors.

Governors can “request” a state of emergency for their prefecture from the prime minister. The way this process seems to work is that the Ministry of Health, Labour, and Welfare distributes information to prefectural government offices and, based on that information, if the number of COVID-19 cases is sufficiently large, governors single-handedly make a decision to request a state of emergency for their region from the prime minister. If the prime minister is convinced (as he always is), he complies with the governor’s request and issues a state of emergency for that prefecture. It is a win-win situation for the prime minister and the governors. This system of declaring states of emergency empowers governors of regions with large case numbers, including ultranationalists like Tokyo Governor Koiki Yuriko and Osaka Governor Yoshimura Hirofumi (who has been likened to Adolf Hitler), not only liberals like Aichi Governor Ōmura Hideaki and Okinawa Governor Tamaki Denny. This overly empowers a small number of elite officials; encourages unconstitutional and undemocratic governance; and hurts the lives of many people, such as those working in the restaurant industry.

The lawyers group JFBA predicted the last problem. Governors, with the cooperation of the prime minister, can force business operators to “change their operating hours or take other measures and, in the event of non-compliance with the order,” they “can impose petty fines and publicize the fact of having issued the request and order,” which hurts the reputation of the business operator/owner.

There is a lack of regulation of governors as they punish businesses for not cooperating with their biosecurity protocols. The JFBA explains that the law does not provide clear criteria for issuing the request or order, “while the scope of the authority granted to the prefectural governors is quite extensive.”

Such orders from governors can cause “immediate” and “grave” consequences, they warn, for people who work at businesses operating under severe conditions, and those people could “lose their livelihood or even their lives.” They emphasize the difficult situation that restaurant owners find themselves in:

The businesses involved in dine-in food service or serving alcoholic beverages, namely the major target of the request/order, are not engaged in operations which are harmful in themselves. It is too cruel to require them to change operating hours (which could be critical to their trade), etc. only because there are risks of spreading infection in food and drink establishments regardless of how hard they try to contain it. If such request or order is due, it must be combined with the necessary and adequate compensation defined in the Constitution of Japan as “just compensation there for” for businesses that are affected.

What compensation will be given to affected businesses has not been spelled out and, in the future, governors could theoretically lash out at certain persons in an arbitrary and unjust way, e.g., attacking the restaurants that are on the side of their personal enemies or political opponents. Orders from governors could impinge on the rights of business owners to provide products and services. “Additionally, the indifferent issuance and publicizing of the request/order may produce unjustifiable reputational damage or discrimination and prejudice, and entails violations of the business operators’ honor, right to privacy, and freedom of business.” For restaurant owners, employees, and many others, the new emphasis on hygiene, sanitization, and biosecurity presents them with the danger of worsened health, stigmatization, and the loss of human rights. One person’s safety is another person’s danger.

Tokyo Governor Koike has, in fact, already ordered four restaurants to pay 250,000 yen (USD $2,000) fines for refusing to shorten their business hours, which they were ordered to do under her state of emergency. While it may be fine to call Japan’s biosecurity policies “lockdown lite,” these fines demonstrate that the Special Measures Law does have legal teeth in it. In the words of the JFBA, this law grants “broad authority to the prefectural governors for the purposes of containing the spread of COVID-19.” According to Japan’s constitution, people have the right to work (Article 27) and the right to own property (Article 29). Article 31 states that “no person shall be deprived of life or liberty, nor shall any other criminal penalty be imposed, except according to procedure established by law.” Under Article 21 Japanese are also supposed to enjoy the right of assembly and association. One could argue that the rights of the above four restaurant owners have been violated.

The political scientist and activist Douglas Lummis has underscored how dear the Constitution has been to the hearts of millions of people throughout the Archipelago of Japan:

Under the protection of the human rights provisions of the Constitution, Japan developed a politically active civil society, and this civil society in turn made protection, or better, full realization of the Constitution its principal piece of business. The country’s ruling elites made the amendment of Article 9 and the remilitarization of the country its first goal as far back as the 1950s; the civil society has so far prevented this. If the Constitution was not legitimized by the Diet vote in 1947, it surely was legitimized in the decades of struggle by the civil society to preserve it.

One of the most dramatic examples was the 1960 US-Japan Security Treaty Uprising (or “Anpō” protests. “By the time the protests climaxed in June 1960, an estimated 30 million people—about one-third of Japan’s population at the time—participated in some manner in cities, villages, and towns all across the nation”). These were protests for peace and the sovereignty of the people, against the US-Japan Security Treaty, which is the treaty that continues to this day to allow the U.S. to station troops on Japanese soil.

Peace-loving people and others throughout the Archipelago have often brought out the best in the Constitution, using it during the three quarters of a century since it was promulgated to build a foundation of peace, democracy, and human rights. Now the question is, “Will Japanese civil society stay strong, maintain a ‘politically active civil society,’ and continue to breathe life into the Constitution? Or, does the Constitution have one foot in the grave already?” For the sake of the people of East Asia and future generations of Japanese, let us hope that the former is true, that Asō Tarō’s ultranationalist dream of the death of the Peace Constitution does not occur. He was ignorantly but cunningly plotting for its death on 29 July 2013 when speaking before an ultranationalist audience: “It should be done quietly. One day everybody woke up and found that the Weimar Constitution had been changed, replaced by the Nazi Constitution. It changed without anyone noticing. Maybe we could learn from that. No hullabaloo.”

Lummis points out Asō’s ignorance: “The Weimar Constitution was never amended by the Nazis; the Nazis did not take over the government ‘quietly’.” Indeed, it was not “amended.” It was state-of-exceptionized. It is not necessarily true “that the LDP is aiming for a Nazi-type regime. They have their own, local, model for authoritarian government: the Japanese government as it was before 1945.” It is an undemocratic and militarist past that nobody in East Asia except former colonizers and colonizer-collaborators looks back on with nostalgia.

Many thanks to Olivier Clarinval for answering several questions about how current government health policies in the Global North are threatening democracy.

The post Annihilating the Virus Enemy in Japan first appeared on Dissident Voice.

Authoritarian Madness: The Slippery Slope from Lockdowns to Concentration Camps

In the politically charged, polarizing tug-of-war that is the debate over COVID-19, we find ourselves buffeted by fear over a viral pandemic that continues to wreak havoc with lives and the economy, threats of vaccine mandates and financial penalties for noncompliance, and discord over how to legislate the public good without sacrificing individual liberty.

The discord is getting more discordant by the day.

Just recently, for instance, the Salt Lake Tribune Editorial Board suggested that government officials should mandate mass vaccinations and deploy the National Guard “to ensure that people without proof of vaccination would not be allowed, well, anywhere.”

In other words, lock up the unvaccinated and use the military to determine who gets to be “free.”

These tactics have been used before.

This is why significant numbers of people are worried: because this is the slippery slope that starts with well-meaning intentions for the greater good and ends with tyrannical abuses no one should tolerate.

For a glimpse at what the future might look like if such a policy were to be enforced, look beyond America’s borders.

In Italy, the unvaccinated are banned from restaurants, bars and public transportation, and could face suspensions from work and monthly fines.

In Austria, anyone who has not complied with the vaccine mandate could face fines up to $4100. Police will be authorized to carry out routine checks and demand proof of vaccination, with penalties of as much as $685 for failure to do so.

In China, which has adopted a zero tolerance, “zero COVID” strategy, whole cities—some with populations in the tens of millions—are being forced into home lockdowns for weeks on end, resulting in mass shortages of food and household supplies. For those unfortunate enough to contract COVID-19, China has constructed “quarantine camps” throughout the country: massive complexes boasting thousands of small, metal boxes containing little more than a bed and a toilet. Detainees—including children, pregnant women and the elderly— were reportedly ordered to leave their homes in the middle of the night, transported to the quarantine camps in buses and held in isolation.

If this last scenario sounds chillingly familiar, it should.

Eighty years ago, another authoritarian regime established more than 44,000 quarantine camps for those perceived as “enemies of the state”: racially inferior, politically unacceptable or simply noncompliant.

While the majority of those imprisoned in the Nazi concentration camps, forced labor camps, incarceration sites and ghettos were Jews, there were also Polish nationals, gypsies, Russians, political dissidents, resistance fighters, Jehovah’s Witnesses, and homosexuals.

Culturally, we have become so fixated on the mass murders of Jewish prisoners by the Nazis that we overlook the fact that the purpose of these concentration camps were initially intended to “incarcerate and intimidate the leaders of political, social, and cultural movements that the Nazis perceived to be a threat to the survival of the regime.”

How do you get from there to here, from Auschwitz concentration camps to COVID quarantine centers?

Connect the dots.

You don’t have to be unvaccinated or a conspiracy theorist or even anti-government to be worried about what lies ahead. You just have to recognize the truth in the warning: power corrupts, and absolute power corrupts absolutely.

This is not about COVID-19. Nor is it about politics, populist movements, or any particular country.

This is about what happens when good, generally decent people—distracted by manufactured crises, polarizing politics, and fighting that divides the populace into warring “us vs. them” camps—fail to take note of the looming danger that threatens to wipe freedom from the map and place us all in chains.

It’s about what happens when any government is empowered to adopt a comply-or-suffer-the-consequences mindset that is enforced through mandates, lockdowns, penalties, detention centers, martial law, and a disregard for the rights of the individual.

The slippery slope begins in just this way, with propaganda campaigns about the public good being more important than individual liberty, and it ends with lockdowns and concentration camps.

The danger signs are everywhere.

Claudio Ronco, a 66-year-old Orthodox Jew and a specialist in 18th-century music, recognizes the signs. Because of his decision to remain unvaccinated, Ronco is trapped inside his house, unable to move about in public without a digital vaccination card. He can no longer board a plane, check into a hotel, eat at a restaurant or get a coffee at a bar. He has been ostracized by friends, shut out of public life, and will soon face monthly fines for insisting on his right to bodily integrity and individual freedom.

For all intents and purposes, Ronco has become an undesirable in the eyes of the government, forced into isolation so he doesn’t risk contaminating the rest of the populace.

This is the slippery slope: a government empowered to restrict movements, limit individual liberty, and isolate “undesirables” to prevent the spread of a disease is a government that has the power to lockdown a country, label whole segments of the population a danger to national security, and force those undesirables—a.k.a. extremists, dissidents, troublemakers, etc.—into isolation so they don’t contaminate the rest of the populace.

The world has been down this road before, too.

Others have ignored the warning signs. We cannot afford to do so.

Which brings me back to the present crisis: COVID-19 is not the Holocaust, and those who advocate vaccine mandates, lockdowns and quarantine camps are not Hitler, but this still has the makings of a slippery slope.

The means do not justify the ends: we must find other ways of fighting a pandemic without resorting to mandates and lockdowns and concentration camps. To do otherwise is to lay the groundwork for another authoritarian monster to rise up and wreak havoc.

If we do not want to repeat the past, then we must learn from past mistakes.

January 27 marks Remembrance Day, the anniversary of the liberation of Auschwitz-Birkenau, a day for remembering those who died at the hands of Hitler’s henchmen and those who survived the horrors of the Nazi concentration camps.

Yet remembering is not enough. We can do better. We must do better.

As I make clear in my book Battlefield America: The War on the American People and in its fictional counterpart The Erik Blair Diaries, the world is teetering on the edge of authoritarian madness.

All it will take is one solid push for tyranny to prevail.

The post Authoritarian Madness: The Slippery Slope from Lockdowns to Concentration Camps first appeared on Dissident Voice.

Madness, Mayhem, and Tyranny

Tyranny does not flourish because perpetuators are helpless and ignorant of their actions. It flourishes because they actively identify with those who promote vicious acts as virtuous.

— An academic study into pathocracy

Disgruntled mobs. Martial law. A populace under house arrest. A techno-corporate state wielding its power to immobilize huge swaths of the country. A Constitution in tatters.

Between the riots, lockdowns, political theater, and COVID-19 mandates, 2021 was one for the history books.

In our ongoing pursuit of life, liberty and happiness, here were some of the stumbling blocks that kept us fettered:

Riots, martial law, and the Deep State’s coup. A simmering pot of political tensions boiled over on January 6, 2021, when protesters stormed the Capitol because the jailer of their choice didn’t get chosen to knock heads for another four years. It took no time at all for the nation’s capital to be placed under a military lockdown, online speech forums restricted, and individuals with subversive or controversial viewpoints ferreted out, investigated, shamed and/or shunned. The subsequent military occupation of the nation’s capital by 25,000 troops as part of the so-called “peaceful” transfer of power from one administration to the next was little more than martial law disguised as national security. The January 6 attempt to storm the Capitol by so-called insurrectionists created the perfect crisis for the Deep State—a.k.a. the Police State a.k.a. the Military Industrial Complex a.k.a. the Techno-Corporate State a.k.a. the Surveillance State—to swoop in and take control.

The imperial president. All of the imperial powers amassed by Donald Trump, Barack Obama, and George W. Bush—to kill American citizens without due process, to detain suspects indefinitely, to strip Americans of their citizenship rights, to carry out mass surveillance on Americans without probable cause, to suspend laws during wartime, to disregard laws with which he might disagree, to conduct secret wars and convene secret courts, to sanction torture, to sidestep the legislatures and courts with executive orders and signing statements, to direct the military to operate beyond the reach of the law, to act as a dictator and a tyrant, above the law and beyond any real accountability—were inherited by Joe Biden, the nation’s 46th president.

The Surveillance State. On any given day, the average American going about his daily business was monitored, surveilled, spied on and tracked in more than 20 different ways, by both government and corporate eyes and ears. In such a surveillance ecosystem, we’re all suspects and databits to be tracked, catalogued and targeted. Consider that it took days, if not hours or minutes, for the FBI to begin the process of identifying, tracking and rounding up those suspected of being part of the Capitol riots. Imagine how quickly government agents could target and round up any segment of society they wanted to based on the digital trails and digital footprints we leave behind.

Digital tyranny. In response to the events of Jan. 6, the tech giants meted out their own version of social justice by way of digital tyranny and corporate censorship. Suddenly, individuals, including those who had no ties to the Capitol riots, began to experience lock outs, suspensions and even deletions of their social media accounts. It signaled a turning point in the battle for control over digital speech, one that leaves “we the people” on the losing end of the bargain.

A new war on terror. “Domestic terrorism,” used interchangeably with “anti-government,” “extremist” and “terrorist,” to describe anyone who might fall somewhere on a very broad spectrum of viewpoints that could be considered “dangerous,” became the new poster child for expanding the government’s powers at the expense of civil liberties. As part of his inaugural address, President Biden pledged to wage war on so-called political extremism, ushering in what investigative journalist Glenn Greenwald described as “a wave of new domestic police powers and rhetoric in the name of fighting ‘terrorism’ that are carbon copies of many of the worst excesses of the first War on Terror that began nearly twenty years ago.” The ramifications are so far-reaching as to render almost every American an extremist in word, deed, thought or by association.

Government violence. The death penalty may have been abolished in Virginia in 2021, but government-sanctioned murder and mayhem continued unabated, with the U.S. government acting as judge, jury and executioner over a populace that had already been pre-judged and found guilty, stripped of their rights, and left to suffer at the hands of government agents trained to respond with the utmost degree of violence. Police particularly posed a risk to anyone undergoing a mental health crisis or with special needs whose disabilities may not be immediately apparent.

Culture wars. Political correctness gave way to a more insidious form of group think and mob rule which, coupled with government and corporate censors and a cancel culture determined not to offend “certain” viewpoints, was all too willing to eradicate views that do not conform. Critical race theory also moved to the forefront of the culture wars.

Home invasions. Government agents routinely violated the Fourth Amendment at will under the pretext of public health and safety. This doesn’t even begin to touch on the many ways the government and its corporate partners-in-crime used surveillance technology to invade homes: with wiretaps, thermal imaging, surveillance cameras, and other monitoring devices. However, in a rare move, the Supreme Court put its foot down in two cases—Caniglia v. Strom and Lange v. California—to prevent police from carrying out warrantless home invasions in order to seize lawfully-owned guns under the pretext of their so-called “community caretaking” duties and from entering homes without warrants under the guise of being in “hot pursuit” of someone they suspect may have committed a crime.

Bodily integrity. Caught in the crosshairs of a showdown between the rights of the individual and the so-called “emergency” state, concerns about COVID-19 mandates and bodily integrity remained part of a much larger debate over the ongoing power struggle between the citizenry and the government over our property “interest” in our bodies. This debate over bodily integrity covered broad territory, ranging from abortion and forced vaccinations to biometric surveillance and basic healthcare. Forced vaccinations, forced cavity searches, forced colonoscopies, forced blood draws, forced breath-alcohol tests, forced DNA extractions, forced eye scans, forced inclusion in biometric databases: these were just a few ways in which Americans continued to be reminded that we have no control over what happens to our bodies during an encounter with government officials.

COVID-19. What started out as an apparent effort to prevent a novel coronavirus from sickening the nation (and the world) became yet another means by which world governments (including our own) expanded their powers, abused their authority, and further oppressed their constituents. Now that the government has gotten a taste for flexing its police state powers by way of a bevy of lockdowns, mandates, restrictions, contact tracing programs, heightened surveillance, censorship, overcriminalization, etc., it remains to be seen how the rights of the individual will hold up in the face of long-term COVID-19 authoritarianism.

Financial tyranny. The national debt (the amount the federal government has borrowed over the years and must pay back) exceeded $29 trillion and is growing. That translates to almost $230,000 per taxpayer. The amount this country owes is now greater than its gross domestic product (all the products and services produced in one year by labor and property supplied by the citizens). That debt is also growing exponentially: it is expected to be twice the size of the U.S. economy by 2051. Meanwhile, the government continued to spend taxpayer money it didn’t have on programs it couldn’t afford; businesses shuttered for lack of customers, resources and employees; and consumers continued to encounter global supply chain shortages (and skyrocketing prices) on everything from computer chips and cars to construction materials.

Global Deep State. Owing in large part to the U.S. government’s deep-seated and, in many cases, top-secret alliances with foreign nations and global corporations, it became increasingly obvious that we had entered into a new world order—a global world order—made up of international government agencies and corporations. We’ve been inching closer to this global world order for the past several decades, but COVID-19, which saw governmental and corporate interests become even more closely intertwined, shifted this transformation into high gear. Fascism became a global menace.

20 years of crises. Every crisis—manufactured or otherwise—since the nation’s early beginnings has become a make-work opportunity for the government to expand its reach and its power at taxpayer expense while limiting our freedoms at every turn: The Great Depression. The World Wars. The 9/11 terror attacks. The COVID-19 pandemic. Indeed, the government’s (mis)management of various states of emergency in the past 20 years from 9/11 to COVID-19 has spawned a massive security-industrial complex the likes of which have never been seen before.

The state of our nation. There may have been a new guy in charge this year, but for the most part, nothing changed. The nation remained politically polarized, controlled by forces beyond the purview of the average American, and rapidly moving the nation away from its freedom foundation. Over the past year, due in part to the COVID-19 pandemic, Americans found themselves repeatedly subjected to egregious civil liberties violations, invasive surveillance, martial law, lockdowns, political correctness, erosions of free speech, strip searches, police shootings of unarmed citizens, government spying, the criminalization of lawful activities, warmongering, etc.

In other words, as I make clear in my book Battlefield America: The War on the American People and in its fictional counterpart The Erik Blair Diaries, the more things changed, the more they stayed the same.

The post Madness, Mayhem, and Tyranny first appeared on Dissident Voice.

The left’s contempt for bodily autonomy during the pandemic is a gift to the right

When did parts of the left get so contemptuous of the principle of “bodily autonomy”? Answer: Just about the time they started fetishising vaccines as the only route out of the current pandemic.

Only two years ago most people understood “bodily autonomy” to be a fundamental, unquestionable human right. Now it is being treated as some kind of perverse libertarian luxury, as proof that the “deplorables” have been watching too much Tucker Carlson or that they have come to idealise the worst excesses of neoliberalism’s emphasis on the rights of the individual over the social good.

This is dangerous nonsense, as should be obvious if we step back and imagine what our world might look like had the principle of “bodily autonomy” not been established through centuries of struggle, just as were the right to vote and the right to health care.

Because without the principle of bodily autonomy, we might still be dragging virgins up high staircases so that they could be sacrificed to placate the sun gods. Without the principle of bodily autonomy, we might still be treating black people like animals – chattel to be used and exploited so that a white landowning class could grow rich from their enforced labours. Without the principle of bodily autonomy, we might still have doctors experimenting on those who are “inferior” – Jews, Romanies, Communists, gays – so that “superior races” could benefit from the “research”. Without the principle of bodily autonomy, we might still have the right of men to rape their wives as one of the unwritten marital vows.

Many of these battles and others were won far more recently than most of us care to remember. I am old enough to recall listening in the car on the way to school to “serious” debates on BBC Radio 4 about whether it was justifiable for the courts to presume a husband’s right to rape his wife.

Arguments about whose bodily autonomy has primacy – a woman’s or the foetus she is carrying – are at the heart of ongoing and inflammatory abortion debates in the United States. And protection of bodily autonomy was the main reason why anyone with an ounce of moral fibre opposed the US torture regime that became normalised in the war on brown people known as the “war on terror”.

Bad faith

There is good reason why, in western societies, vaccination uptake is lowest among ethnic minorities. The clues are embedded in the three preceding paragraphs. Powerful nation-states, run by white elites for the benefit of white elites, have been trampling on the bodily autonomy of black and brown people for centuries – sometimes because those elites were indifferent to the harm they were causing, and sometimes because they professed to be helping these “inferior” peoples, such as in the “war on terror’s” promotion of neoliberal “democracy” as the grounds for invading countries whose oil we coveted.

The pretexts change but the bad faith is the same.

Based on their long histories of suffering at the hands of western, colonial states, black and brown communities have every reason to continue assuming bad faith. It is not solidarity, or protecting them, to ignore or trivialise their concerns and their alienation from state institutions. It is ugly arrogance. Contempt for their concerns will not make those concerns evaporate. It will reinforce them.

But, of course, there is also something arrogant about treating the concerns of ethnic minorities as exceptional, patronising them by according them some kind of special dispensation, as though they need indulging on the principle of bodily autonomy when the rest of us are mature enough to discard it.

The fact is each generation comes to understand that the priorities of its ancestors were misplaced. Each generation has a powerful elite, or a majority whose consent has been manufactured, that luxuriate in the false certainty that bodily autonomy can be safely sacrificed for a higher principle. Half a century ago the proponents of marital rape argued for protecting tradition and patriarchal values because they were supposedly the glue holding society together. With 50 years’ hindsight, we may see the current debates about vaccine mandates – and the completely unscientific corollary that the unvaccinated are unclean and plague carriers – in much the same light.

The swelling political consensus on vaccine mandates intentionally ignores the enormous spread of the virus after two years of pandemic and the consequent natural immunity of large sections of the population, irrespective of vaccination status. This same consensus obfuscates the fact that natural immunity is most likely to prove longer-lasting and more effective against any variants of Covid that continue to emerge. And the consensus distracts from the inconvenient fact that the short-lived efficacy of the current vaccines means everyone is potentially “unclean” and a plague carrier, as the new variant Omicron is underscoring only too clearly.

No solidarity

The truth is that where each of us stands on the political divide over bodily autonomy says less about how much we prioritise human rights, or the social good, or solidarity with the weak and powerless, and much more about other, far less objectively rational matters, such as:

  • how fearful we are personally about the effects of Covid on ourselves or our loved ones;
  • whether we think the plutocrats that run our societies have prioritised the social good over the desire for quick, profit-making technological fixes, and the appearance of strong leadership and decisive action;
  • how sure we are that science is taking precedence over the interests of pharmaceutical corporations whose profits are booming as our societies grow older and sicker, and whether we think these corporations have captured our regulatory authorities, including the World Health Organisation;
  • whether we think it helpful or dangerous to scapegoat an unvaccinated minority, blaming it for straining health services or for the failure to eradicate a virus that is, in reality, never going away;
  • and, especially in the left’s case, how reassured we are that non-western, official “enemy” governments, such as Cuba, China, Russia and Iran, have thrown most of their eggs into the vaccine basket too – and usually as enthusiastically as western societies.

It is possible, however, that the way our technological, materialist world has evolved, ruled by competitive elites in nation states vying for power, means there was always likely to be a single, global conception of how to end the pandemic: through a quick-fix, magic bullet of either a vaccine or a drug. The fact that nation states – the “good” and “bad” alike – are unlikely to think outside this particular box does not mean it is the only box available, or that this box must be the one all citizens are coerced into.

Basic human rights do not apply only in the good times. They can’t just be set aside in difficult times like a pandemic because those rights are a nuisance, or because some people refuse to do what we think is best for them. Those rights are fundamental to what it means to live in a free and open society. If we get rid of bodily autonomy while we deal with this virus, that principle will have to be fought for all over again – and in the context of hi-tech, surveillance states that are undoubtedly more powerful than any we have known before.

Coerced vaccination

It is wrong, however, to focus exclusively on bodily autonomy. The undermining of the right to bodily autonomy is slipping into an equally alarming undermining of the right to cognitive autonomy. In fact, these two kinds of autonomy cannot be readily disentangled. Because anyone who believes that people must be required to take a vaccine will soon be arguing that no one should be allowed to hear information that might make them more resistant to vaccination.

There is an essential problem about maintaining an open and honest debate during a time of pandemic, which anyone who is thinking critically about Covid and our responses to it must grapple with every time they put finger to keyboard. The discourse playing-field is far from level.

Those who demand vaccine mandates, and wish to jettison the principle of bodily autonomy as a “medical” inconvenience, can give full-throated voice to their arguments in the secure knowledge that only a few, isolated contrarians may occasionally dare to challenge them.

But when those who value the principle of bodily autonomy or who blanch at the idea of coerced vaccination wish to make their case, they must hold back. They must argue with one arm tied behind their backs – and not just because they are likely to be mobbed, particularly by the left, for trying to widen the range of arguments under consideration in what are essentially political and ethical debates masquerading as scientific ones.

Those questioning the manufactured consensus – a consensus that intentionally scapegoats the unvaccinated as disease carriers, a consensus that has once again upended social solidarity among the 99 per cent, a consensus that has been weaponised to shield the elites from proper scrutiny for their profiteering from the pandemic – must measure every word they say against the effect it may have on those listening.

Personal calculations

I place a high value on autonomy, of both the cognitive and physical varieties. I am against the state deciding for me what I and you are allowed to think and say, and I am against the state deciding what goes into my and your body without our consent (though I also recognise that I have little choice but to breathe polluted air, drink polluted water, and eat chemically altered food, all of which have damaged my and your immune systems and made us more susceptible to viruses like Covid).

But at the same time, unlike the vaccine mandate mob, I never forget that I am responsible for my words and that they have consequences, and potentially dangerous ones. There are a significant proportion of people who almost certainly need to be vaccinated, and probably regularly, to avoid being seriously harmed by exposure to the virus. Any responsible writer needs to weigh the effect of their words. I do not wish to be responsible for making one person who would benefit from a vaccine more hesitant to take it. I am particularly wary of playing God during a pandemic.

However, my reluctance to pontificate on a subject on which I have no expertise – vaccine safety – does not confer a licence on others to command the debate on other subjects about which they appear to know very little, such as medical and political ethics.

The fact is, however much some people would be best advised to take the vaccine, there is a recognised risk involved, even if we are not supposed to mention it. The long-term safety of the vaccines is unknown and cannot be known for several more years – and possibly for much longer, given the refusal of the drug regulators to release vaccine data for many more decades.

The vaccine technology is novel and its effects on the complex physiology of the human body and the individual vagaries of each of our immune systems will not be fully apparent for a long time. The decision to take a new type of vaccine in these circumstances is a calculation that each individual must weigh carefully for themselves, based on a body they know better than anyone else.

Pretending that there is no calculation – that everyone is the same, that the vaccines will react in the same manner on every person – is belied by the fact that the vaccines have had to be given emergency approval, and that there have been harsh disagreements even among experts about whether the calculation in favour of vaccination makes sense for everyone, especially for children. That calculation is further complicated by the fact that a significant section of the population now have a natural immunity to the whole virus and not just vaccine-induced immunity to the spike protein.

But stuffing everyone into a one-size-fits-all solution is exactly what bureaucratic, technocratic states are there to do. It is what they know best. To the state, you are I and just a figure on a pandemic spread-sheet. To think otherwise is childish delusion. Those who refuse to think of themselves as simply a spread-sheet digit – those who insist on their right to bodily and cognitive autonomy – should not be treated as narcissists for doing so or as a threat to public health, especially when the immunity provided by the vaccines is so short-lived, the vaccines themselves are highly leaky, and there is little understanding yet of the differences, or even potential conflicts, between natural and vaccine-induced immunity.

Perpetual emergency

Nonetheless, parts of the left are acting as if none of this is true, or even debatable. Instead they are proudly joining the mob, leading the self-righteous clamour to assert control not only over the bodies of others but over their minds too. This left angrily rejects all debate as a threat to the official “medical” consensus. They insist on conformity of opinion and then claim it as science, in denial of the fact that science is by its nature disputatious and evolves constantly. They cheer on censorship – by profit-driven social media corporations – even when it is recognised experts who are being silenced.

Their subtext is that any contrary opinion is a threat to the social order, and will fuel vaccine hesitancy. The demand is that we all become worshippers at the altars of Pfizer, Moderna and AstraZeneca, at the risk otherwise of being denounced as heretics, as “anti-vaxxers”. No middle ground can be allowed in this era of perpetual emergency.

This is not just disturbing ethically. It is disastrous politically. The state is already massively powerful against each of us as individuals. We have collective power only in so far as we show solidarity with each other. If the left conspires with the state against those who are weak, against black and brown communities whose main experiences of state institutions have been abusive, against the “deplorables”, we divide ourselves and make the weakest parts of our society even weaker.

Former Labour leader Jeremy Corbyn understood this when he was one of the few on the left to publicly resist the recent move by the UK government to legislate vaccine mandates. He rightly argued that the correct path is persuasion, not coercion.

But this kind of mix of reason and compassion is being drowned out on parts of the left. They justify violations of bodily and cognitive autonomy on the grounds that we are living in exceptional times, during a pandemic. They complacently argue that such violations will be temporary, required only until the virus is eradicated – even though the virus is now endemic and with us for good. They silently assent to the corporate media being given even greater censorship powers as the price we must pay to deal with vaccine hesitancy, on the assumption that we can reclaim the right to dissent later.

But these losses, in circumstances in which our rights and freedoms are already under unprecedented assault, will not be easily restored. Once social media can erase you or me from the public square for stating real-world facts that are politically and commercially inconvenient – such as Twitter’s ban on anyone pointing out that the vaccinated can spread the virus too – there will be no going back.

Political instincts

There is a further reason, however, why the left is being deeply foolish in turning on the unvaccinated and treating the principles of bodily and cognitive autonomy with such contempt. Because this approach  sends a message to black and brown communities, and to the “deplorables”, that the left is elitist, that its talk of solidarity is hollow, and that it is only the right, not the left, that is willing to fight to protect the most intimate freedoms we enjoy – over our bodies and minds.

Every time the left shouts down those who are hesitant about taking a Covid vaccine; every time it echoes the authoritarianism of those who demand mandates, chiefly for low-paid workers; every time it refuses to engage with – or even allow – counter-arguments, it abandons the political battlefield to the right.

Through its behaviour, the shrill left confirms the right’s claims that the political instincts of the left are Stalinist, that the left will always back the might of an all-powerful state against the concerns of ordinary people, that the left sees only the faceless masses, who need to be herded towards bureaucratically convenient solutions, rather than individuals who need to be listened to as they grapple with their own particular dilemmas and beliefs.

The fact is that you can favour vaccines, you can be vaccinated yourself, you can even desire that everyone regularly takes a Covid vaccine, and still think that bodily and cognitive autonomy are vitally important principles – principles to be valued even more than vaccines. You can be a cheerleader for vaccination and still march against vaccine mandates.

Some on the left behave as if these are entirely incompatible positions, or as if they are proof of hypocrisy and bad faith. But what this kind of left is really exposing is their own inability to think in politically complex ways, their own difficulty remembering that principles are more important than quick-fixes, however frightening the circumstances, and that the debates about how we organise our societies are inherently political, much more so than technocratic or “medical”.

The right understands that there is a political calculus in handling the pandemic that cannot be discarded except at a grave political cost. Part of the left has a much weaker grasp of this point. Its censoriousness, its arrogance, its hectoring tone – all given cover by claims to be following a “science” that keeps changing – are predictably alienating those the left claims to represent.

The left needs to start insisting again on the critical importance of bodily and cognitive autonomy – and to stop shooting itself in the foot.

The post The left’s contempt for bodily autonomy during the pandemic is a gift to the right first appeared on Dissident Voice.

No Substantive Economic Recovery In Sight

One of the fundamental economic laws under capitalism is for wealth to become more concentrated in fewer hands over time, which in turn leads to more political power in fewer hands, which means that the majority have even less political and economic power over time. Monopoly in economics means monopoly in politics. It is the opposite of an inclusive, democratic, modern, healthy society. This retrogressive feature intrinsic to capitalism has been over-documented in thousands of reports and articles from hundreds of sources across the political and ideological spectrum over the last few decades. It is well-known, for example, that a handful of people own most of the wealth in the U.S. and most members of Congress are millionaires. This leaves out more than 95% of people. Not surprisingly, “policy makers” have consistently failed to reverse these antisocial trends inherent to an obsolete system.

At the same time, with no sense of irony and with no fidelity to science, news headlines from around the world continue to scream that the economy in many countries and regions is doing great and that more economic recovery and growth depend almost entirely, if not entirely, on vaccinating everyone (multiple times). In other words, once everyone is vaccinated, we will see really good economic times, everything will be amazing, and we won’t have too much to worry about. Extremely irrational and irresponsible statements and claims of all kinds continue to be made in the most dogmatic and frenzied way by the mainstream press at home and abroad in a desperate attempt to divert attention from the deep economic crisis continually unfolding nationally and internationally. Dozens of countries are experiencing profound economic problems.

While billions of vaccination shots have already been administered worldwide, and millions more are administered every day (with and without people’s consent), humanity continues to confront many major intractable economic problems caused by the internal dynamics of an outdated economic system.

A snapshot:

  1. More rapid and intense inflation everywhere
  2. Major supply chain disruptions and distortions everywhere
  3. Shortages of many products
  4. “Shortages” of workers in many sectors worldwide
  5. Shortened and inconsistent hours of operation at thousands of businesses
  6. Falling value of the U.S. dollar and other fiat currencies
  7. Growing stagflation
  8. Millions of businesses permanently disappeared
  9. More income and wealth inequality
  10. High dismal levels of unemployment, under-employment, and worker burnout
  11. Growing health insurance costs
  12. Unending fear, anxiety, and hysteria around endless covid strains
  13. More scattered panic buying
  14. The stock market climbing while the real economy declines (highly inflated asset valuations in the stock market)
  15. Spectacular economic failures like Lehman Brothers (in the U.S. 13 years ago) and Evergrande (in China in 2021)
  16. All kinds of debt increasing at all levels
  17. Central banks around the world printing trillions in fiat currencies non-stop and still lots of bad economic news
  18. And a whole host of other harsh economic realities often invisible to the eye and rarely reported on that tell a much more tragic story of an economy that cannot provide for the needs of the people

The list goes on and on. More nauseating data appears every day. Economic hardship, which takes on many tangible and intangible forms, is wreaking havoc on the majority at home and abroad. There is no real and substantive economic improvement. It is hard to see a bright, stable, prosperous, peaceful future for millions under such conditions, which is why many, if not most, people do not have a good feeling about what lies ahead and have little faith in the rich, their politicians, and “representative democracy.” It is no surprise that President Joe Biden’s approval rating is low and keeps falling.

What will the rich and their political and media representatives say and do when most people are vaccinated, everyone else has natural immunity, and the economy is still failing? What will the rich do when economic failure cannot be blamed on bacteria or viruses? To be sure, the legitimacy crisis will further deepen and outmoded liberal institutions of governance will become even more obsolete and more incapable of sorting out today’s serious problems. “Representative democracy” will become more discredited and more illusions about the “social contract” will be shattered. In this context, talk of “New Deals” for this and “New Deals” for that won’t solve anything in a meaningful way either because these “New Deals” are nothing more than an expansion of state-organized corruption to pay the rich, mainly through “public-private-partnerships.” This is already being spun in a way that will fool the gullible. Many are actively ignoring how such high-sounding “reforms” are actually pay-the-rich schemes that increase inequality and exacerbate a whole host of other problems.

It is not in the interest of the rich to see different covid strains and scares disappear because these strains and scares provide a convenient cover and scapegoat for economic problems rooted in the profound contradictions of an outmoded economic system over-ripe for a new direction, aim, and control. It is easier to claim that the economy is intractably lousy because of covid and covid-related restrictions than to admit that the economy is continually failing due to the intrinsic built-in nature, operation, and logic of capital itself.

There is no way forward while economic and political power remain dominated by the rich. The only way out of the economic crisis is by vesting power in workers, the people who actually produce the wealth that society depends on. The rich and their outmoded system are a drag on everyone and are not needed in any way; they are a major obstacle to the progress of society; they add no value to anything and are unable and unwilling to lead the society out of its deepening all-sided crisis.

There is an alternative to current obsolete arrangements and only the people themselves, armed with a new independent outlook, politics, and thinking can usher it in. Economic problems, health problems, and 50 other lingering problems are not going to be solved so long as the polity remains marginalized and disempowered by the rich and their capital-centered arrangements and institutions. New and fresh thinking and consciousness are needed at this time. A new and more powerful human-centered outlook is needed to guide humanity forward.

Human consciousness and resiliency are being severely tested at this time, and the results have been harsh and tragic in many ways for so many. We are experiencing a major test of the ability of the human species to bring into being what is missing, that is, to overcome the neoliberal destruction of time, space, and the fabric of society so as to unleash the power of human productive forces to usher in a much more advanced society where time-space relations accelerate in favor of the entire polity. There is an alternative to the anachronistic status quo.

The post No Substantive Economic Recovery In Sight first appeared on Dissident Voice.

The Branch Covidians are Waging War on Humanity

All embarked, the party launched out on the sea’s foaming lanes while the son of Atreus told his troops to wash, to purify themselves from the filth of the plague. They scoured it off, threw scourings in the surf and sacrificed to Apollo full-grown bulls and goats along the beaten shore of the fallow barren sea and savory smoke went swirling up the skies.

Homer, The Iliad (1.365-370)

The Biden administration’s announcement that Americans employed in companies with over 100 employees would be compelled to take an experimental gene therapy in explicit violation of the Nuremberg Code has opened a new front in the biofascist assault on democracy. Businesses and government agencies that fail to enforce this mandate will potentially face draconian fines. Should the oligarchy succeed in completely weaponizing health care, vaccine passports would undoubtedly become both pervasive and mandatory, but as Tucker Carlson pointed out during one of his recent monologues, it is also likely that dissidents would be handed over to the Cult of Psychiatry. This is not an uncommon practice in police states, and the pathologization of dissent has been ongoing in the West for quite some time now. Only through knowledge, compassion, and camaraderie can the forces of neo-Nazi medicine be outflanked. The days of medical Armageddon are upon us.

As the Vaccine Adverse Event Reporting System (VAERS) and its European counterpart unequivocally demonstrate, the Covid vaccine program is causing tremendous harm and should have been terminated many months ago. Even the efficacy of the vaccines is very much in doubt, as evidenced by soaring Covid case numbers in some of the most vaccinated places on earth, such as the Seychelles (see here and here), Israel (see here, here, here and here), Gibraltar and Iceland. As physician assistant Deborah Conrad pointed out in her interview with The HighWire, VAERS is so dysfunctional that many doctors and nurses are only vaguely aware of its existence.

Addressing the “pandemic of the unvaccinated,” Joseph Mercola, MD, writes on Mercola.com:

In a June 29, 2021, interview, Fauci called the Delta variant ‘a game-changer’ for unvaccinated people, warning it will devastate the unvaccinated population while vaccinated individuals are protected against it. Alas, in the real world, the converse is turning out to be true, as the Delta variant is running wild primarily among those who got the Covid jab.

As Dr. James Lyons-Weiler and other experts without ties to industry have noted, coronavirus vaccines have long had a poor safety record. Indeed, when scientists attempted to create a vaccine for SARS-CoV-1 the laboratory animals all died due to pathogenic priming.

The vaccine mandates are causing middle class professionals to quit their jobs in droves, from highly trained fighter pilots, to large numbers of nurses leading to maternity wards being shuttered. In what is reminiscent of the anthrax vaccine (administered to the military despite the lack of both informed consent and FDA approval), army doctors are now observing serious adverse events in formerly healthy soldiers. The Covid vaccine drive has surpassed even the psychopathy of the Nazi doctors, as it would have been inconceivable to senior physicians in the Third Reich to give all of German society an experimental vaccine.

In an incident that underscores how delusional the mass media has become, WXYZ-TV in Detroit, an ABC affiliate, reached out to people on Facebook for stories of Americans who died of Covid because they delayed getting vaccinated, but were instead inundated with thousands of stories of people who were killed or seriously injured by the Emergency Use Authorization (EUA) gene therapies.

Not only has a two-tier society emerged where the unvaccinated are being denied the right to work, attend university, eat out, go to sporting events, and enjoy the performing and visual arts; but another two-tier society has also emerged, one which has been evolving for quite some time now: the mega rich – for whom none of these draconian rules will apply – and everyone else. Video from a Democratic Party fundraiser hosted by Nancy Pelosi in Napa Valley has emerged showing affluent liberals rubbing shoulders unmasked while their brown servants wear masks. Masks and social distancing were apparently not required at the recent Met Gala in New York, where celebrities get to hobnob, have shallow conversations, and show off their outlandish costumes while millions of their countrymen wallow in unemployment, hopelessness, and despair.

And it would seem that New York City mayor Bill de Blasio (whose real name incidentally is Warren Wilhelm Jr.) is not the only one who delights in imposing punitive measures on those who opt for the control group, with museums and concert halls enthusiastically embracing the heinous practice. The Guggenheim has even written on their website in conjunction with their vaccine requirement that “We focus on safety so you can immerse yourself in art.” (Thankfully, I have a lot of art books).

What will transpire if the mandates remain in place? Will our leaders order their minions to shut off the water of the unvaccinated? Will workers and students be compelled to take an experimental AIDS vaccine or submit to weekly testing? These injunctions are unethical, discriminatory, and unconstitutional, as they transform inalienable rights into privileges which must be earned by participating in a dangerous medical experiment. Restaurants in Manhattan, which have some of the highest commercial rents in the world, are naturally reluctant to enforce these regulations, yet run the risk of being snitched on by Branch Covidian undercover operatives.

Such an incestuous relationship has formed between the FDA, CDC, NIH, NIAID and the pharmaceutical industry, that going to the websites for these agencies invariably yields information that mirrors what is posted on the drug company websites. There is robust science indicating that natural immunity is stronger than vaccine-induced immunity. There is likewise compelling evidence that face masks do more harm than good, yet these facts continue to be ignored by the presstitutes – a gaggle of clowns also on industry payroll.

When reporter Emerald Robinson asked White House principal deputy secretary Karine Jean-Pierre how doctors were testing for the Delta variant, Jean-Pierre became defensive, demanding that we stop asking questions and follow “the experts.” They know best after all, who when not registering vaccinated deaths as unvaccinated and artificially inflating the Covid death toll, are busy turning the country into a nation of opioid, heroin (the two are inextricably linked), fentanyl, barbiturate, benzodiazepine, and psychotropic drug addicts. (American doctors even once prescribed cocaine and heroin). Speaking at the Washington National Cathedral, our imaginary president, Dr. Fauci, said that he was sympathetic to Brits and Americans who are accustomed to certain post-Medieval rights and freedoms, “but now is the time to do what you’re told.”

The FDA “approval” for the Pfizer Covid vaccine attempts to conflate EUA investigational agents with FDA-approved drugs, as FDA has not approved the Pfizer BioNTech vaccine, which is still in use, but the Pfizer Comirnaty Covid vaccine, which isn’t even available. The FDA has argued that the two vaccines are indistinguishable from one another and that they can be used interchangeably, which is absurd. Any drug under the auspices of an EUA is by law experimental and cannot be mandated. Senator Ron Johnson wrote a letter to FDA Acting Commissioner Woodcock requesting clarification on this preposterous state of affairs.

It is curious that Hydroxychloroquine is somehow safe as a maintenance drug for lupus, yet suddenly becomes dangerous when used to treat SARS-CoV-2, even if only taken for a very short period of time. Here is the website lupus.org:

Given the drug’s many and varied beneficial effects and its excellent long-standing safety profile, most rheumatologists believe that Hydroxychloroquine should be taken by people with lupus throughout their lifetime. [Italics added]

The FDA temporarily authorized the use of Hydroxychloroquine to treat COVID-19 in March of 2020, but only with hospitalized patients. The FDA notice read as follows:

Hydroxychloroquine sulfate may only be used to treat adult and adolescent patients who weigh 50 kg or more and are hospitalized with COVID-19, for whom a clinical trial is not available, or participation is not feasible.

As Dr. Vladimir Zelenko, Dr. Peter McCullough, and others have noted, Covid protocols using Hydroxychloroquine and other zinc ionophores are most efficacious early in the disease process. In other words, the FDA denied permission for doctors to use a medication for outpatient care where it has been shown to significantly reduce hospitalization and death, but allowed the drug to be used for hospitalized patients where the disease has often spiraled out of control, thereby setting the drug up to fail. Dr. Simone Gold has argued that the prevalence of Hydroxychloroquine in Africa, where it is frequently obtainable as an over-the-counter drug for malaria treatment and prophylaxis, has played a significant role in protecting the continent from Covid.

So eager were the Branch Covidians to torpedo Hydroxychloroquine as a treatment for SARS-CoV-2 that they conducted dangerous and unethical trials where patients were deliberately overdosed and given toxic quantities of the drug, likely causing some of the trial participants to die, and causing even far more deaths when public health agencies around the world advised (or in some instances, ordered) doctors to stop using a life-saving medication as a treatment for COVID-19.

Writing for The Defender, the newsletter for Children’s Health Defense, Jeremy Loffredo points out that in addition to threatening the profits of the mRNA vaccines, Hydroxychloroquine posed a threat to the profits of Gilead, the manufacturer of Remdesivir:

Since the beginning of the Covid pandemic, dozens of new studies have demonstrated the effectiveness of Hydroxychloroquine and its first cousin, Chloroquine, against Covid. These studies occurred in China, France, Saudi Arabia, Italy, India, New York and Michigan. However, such proof of Hydroxychloroquine’s benefit to patients with Covid has posed an existential threat to Gilead sales throughout the Covid outbreak.

Remdesivir costs over $3,000 per treatment and has been linked to serious and potentially life-threatening side effects. Nevertheless, if a drug is profitable safety, necessity, and efficacy are disregarded. It becomes “the standard of care.”

Having had their fill of demonizing Hydroxychloroquine, the presstitutes and pharmaceutical sock puppets turned their vitriol on another unpatentable drug, Ivermectin. Described as “a multifaceted drug of Nobel prize-honoured distinction” by the journal New Microbes and New Infections, Ivermectin has played a critical role in combating onchocerciasis, also known as river blindness. Writing for The Lancet, Michel Boussinesq, MD, PhD, points out that “Ivermectin has been widely used for 30 years to combat onchocerciasis and is rightly considered a wonder drug.” In African countries where Ivermectin is regularly taken as an anti-parasitic Covid deaths have been negligible. Elaborating on this point, Kenyan doctors Stephen Karanga and Wahome Ngare pointed out in a Klartext podcast that due to Ivermectin’s effectiveness in treating Covid they weren’t worried about SARS-CoV-2; their real concerns lay with car accidents, HIV, and malaria.

Meanwhile, the FDA refuses to even acknowledge that Ivermectin can be used in humans, tweeting “You are not a horse. You are not a cow. Seriously, y’all. Stop it.” (Yes, those are some of the smartest people in the world). This villainy is not without precedent, as millions of Americans were prescribed highly addictive opioids as opposed to safer and more inexpensive over-the-counter pain medications. The sacking of Canadian emergency physician Dr. Daniel Nagase, who was found guilty of saving the lives of his Covid patients with Ivermectin, underscores the fact that the elites will stop at nothing to prolong the pandemic.

In addition to fomenting the cult-like notion that a vaccine is a magical elixir for which no risk-benefit analysis is needed, the media has played a critical role in deceiving hundreds of millions of people around the world into believing that Covid is equally dangerous to all patients irregardless of age and preexisting conditions. This, in turn, has led to Black Death levels of hysteria, as evidenced by unvaccinated locals in the Indian state of Madhya Pradesh being forced to wear placards displaying the skull and crossbones.

Physicians who attempt to treat Covid early using Front Line COVID-19 Critical Care Alliance (FLCCC) and Association of American Physicians and Surgeons (AAPS) protocols are being vilified as quacks and snake oil salesmen, while doctors who are killing staggering numbers of people through a combination of nontreatment and dangerous experimental drugs are hailed as heroes. In many ways, this is the essence of biofascism: care patients desperately need is denied them, while dangerous care is imposed through coercion – both monstrous violations of the oath to do no harm.

It is not uncommon for physicians to prescribe FDA-approved drugs to treat conditions that are different from what the drug was initially intended for. This is referred to as “off-label use” or “off-label prescribing.” How will a high-risk patient who contracts Covid benefit from masks, social distancing, lockdowns and vaccines (even if they were safe and effective)? They need something that will ward off the inflammatory phase of the disease and keep the ventilator at bay. This suppression of early treatment options has failed to escape the attention of the Indian Bar Association, which has sought criminal charges against WHO Chief Scientist Dr. Soumya Swaminathan for making fallacious claims about Ivermectin to protect the Church of Vaccinology.

A passage from the Rome Declaration, established at the Rome Covid Summit, and signed by over 10,000 doctors and scientists, states the following:

WHEREAS, thousands of physicians are being prevented from providing treatment to their patients, as a result of barriers put up by pharmacies, hospitals, and public health agencies, rendering the vast majority of healthcare providers helpless to protect their patients in the face of disease. Physicians are now advising their patients to simply go home (allowing the virus to replicate) and return when their disease worsens, resulting in hundreds of thousands of unnecessary patient deaths, due to failure-to-treat;

WHEREAS, this is not medicine. This is not care. These policies may actually constitute crimes against humanity.

In the Age of Faucism, everyone who arrives at an American emergency room is being given a PCR test, and if it indicates that they have the virus (not unlikely considering the prevalence of false positives), their loved ones are summarily kicked out of the hospital, they are put into isolation, given drugs of dubious safety and efficacy, and even intubated. Dr. Jane Ruby has referred to these Covid obsessed hospitals as “the new ovens.” Furthermore, physicians are being threatened with revocation of their licenses should they be found guilty of “spreading misinformation” – a practice also commonly referred to as informed consent.

Hitler’s physicians were fond of euthanizing the mentally ill, and it would appear that their heirs are equally enamored with the practice, as the mentally handicapped have been vaccinated by force and with armed police present in Los Angeles. Children in Toronto have been given the experimental jab, without parental permission, and in exchange for free ice cream, while irate parents were prevented from entering the grounds. Not to be outdone, whistleblowers from Aegis Living, an assisted living facility for the aged, have reported that residents have been “chemically restrained” and injected with the investigational mRNA biologicals without their knowledge. As Dr. Lee Merritt said in a talk with Dr. Sherri Tenpenny, “We have a whole society doing what we tried the Nazi doctors for.”

As evidenced by the CDC vaccine schedule (a growing list of mandates coupled with liability protection for the manufacturer), and the fact that parents can be charged with “medical neglect” should they object to their children being placed on psychotropic drugs, the American public school system has long been in the grip of late-stage biofascism. To add insult to injury, toddlers are now being forced to wear masks and the mRNA biologicals are being injected into minors. Children’s Health Defense has reported that “Pfizer’s Covid vaccine could be rolled out to babies as young as 6 months in the U.S. this winter — under plans being drawn up by the pharmaceutical giant.”

Australia offers another window into our future should we fail to save humanity from the hordes of Faucism. Indeed, this has become a country where farmers’ markets are shut down by riot police, senior health officials tell their countrymen not to talk to one another so as to prevent transmission of a virus, pregnant women are arrested in their pajamas for attempting to organize anti-lockdown rallies on the Internet, women are violently choked by sadistic goons for leaving their homes unmasked, young children are pepper sprayed and brutalized for committing the aforementioned sin, citizens are committed (or “sectioned” as they say in Britain) for questioning the official Covid narrative, rubber bullets are fired into crowds of informed consenters, and extreme forms of violence are unleashed against elderly protesters – acts of barbarity that have enraged the citizenry. Melbourne in particular has lost all semblance of checks and balances, with storm troopers being unleashed on the population, in harrowing scenes reminiscent of the Wehrmacht’s storming of Prague. (Granted, without the live rounds).

Convinced that anyone who questions the veracity of the liberal media and the public health agencies is a “conspiracy theorist” (really a euphemism for “mentally ill”), neoliberals have already crossed the Rubicon and taken up the truncheon of authoritarianism. Undoubtedly, the official Covid narrative is deranged. Yet is it any more inane than “Trump’s white supremacist insurrection,” “Russia invaded Ukraine,” “the Russians hacked the election,” “Trump is Putin’s puppet,” and NATO was compelled to bomb Libya to smithereens “to save Benghazi?”

Trapped in a vortex of amnesia and unreason, the neoliberal has been hoodwinked into believing that whatever the medical mullahs say is “the science;” and whatever the liberal media says is incontrovertible, irrefutable, and infallible; i.e., “reality.” Fauci’s contradictory statements, particularly with regard to the virulence of COVID-19 and his stance on masks, fail to diminish their fervor as they cannot even remember what they had for breakfast, let alone the tens of thousands of Americans killed by Vioxx or the over 400,000 Americans that lost their lives to the opioid epidemic.

The liberals of the 1960s, who genuinely believed in the Nuremberg Code, would have regarded the Branch Covidians with contempt. What a pity that the ranks of these medical brownshirts are dominated largely by those who once idolized the likes of Bobby Kennedy and John F. Kennedy, yet now wallow in a pitiable state of moral and intellectual bankruptcy. It is true that conservative publications, such as The Washington Post, The Economist, and The Wall Street Journal are parroting similar propaganda with regard to Covid. However, as evidenced by Tucker Carlson’s show, the conservative media no longer speaks with one voice. Moreover, millions of conservatives no longer believe in the infallibility of the conservative media as liberals continue to believe in the infallibility of the liberal media.

Ultimately, the Branch Covidians are the offspring of a union between a corporatized health care system that has grown increasingly hostile to informed consent, and a liberal class that stopped thinking when Bill Clinton was inaugurated and has come to regard senior officials in the liberal media and the public health agencies as gods. The mass psychosis of the Branch Covidians is inextricably linked with the mass psychosis of neoliberalism. Without the latter the former would have about as much societal impact as the Hare Krishnas.

The Nazis divided humanity into the subhumans (Jews, Roma, political prisoners, and Slavs); the humans (allied European fascists and the Japanese); and the supermen (the Germans, or Aryans). For quite some time now, the American health care system has been mired in a multi-tier system which divides patients up into similar categories. In light of this boorishness, teaching hospitals have long been instructing trainees that care is to be doled out depending on what kind of insurance plan patients have. Privileged patients are granted the right to choose their own doctor while the less fortunate are confined to narrow networks. Humans are permitted to meet with an attending physician while the Untermenschen are sent to resident clinics. Unbeknownst to Nazi doctors, both past and present, there is no bioethics on-off switch. In what was foundational to the Blitzkrieg but could also explain their increasingly deranged decision making, much of the German military during World War II was regularly taking Pervitin, the predecessor to crystal meth, and doing so with the support of their own doctors.

As the forces of darkness become increasingly desperate, liberals drown in an ocean of madness and sociopathy. Hypnotized by an oligarchy they have deified, while believing that they are still marching with Martin Luther King singing “Kumbaya My Lord” and “We Shall Overcome,” this faux-left movement bears a closer resemblance to the Democratic Party of the 1860s than the Democratic Party of the 1960s. Indeed, if the Branch Covidians succeed in destroying the citadel of informed consent, only one form of government will reign in the United States: slavery.

The post The Branch Covidians are Waging War on Humanity first appeared on Dissident Voice.