Tuesday, May 22, 2018

Roman Empire II?

By Mike Rozeff

Pompeo’s speech today, making 12 demands upon Iran while threatening new sanctions, exemplifies an America trapped in the empire of its government’s making. Americans are hostages who have acquiesced. We can only escape our bonds by ending the empire.

Once an empire expands to take in numerous lands beyond the borders of its core country, its government (in this case, the U.S.) finds that its defense requires removing threats and potential threats in a host of places that are far from the core country, which is America, taking in these 50 states.

Pompeo says at the outset: “President Trump withdrew from the deal for a simple reason: it failed to guarantee the safety of the American people from the risk created by the leaders of the Islamic Republic of Iran.”

Pompeo misstates the reality. The American people or this country consisting of the 50 states, faces no safety risk from Iran. It’s the government, the U.S., that perceives the risk. America is not the U.S.; the U.S. is the government of America.
Although America, if it were shorn of its empire, and were reduced to its 50 states, faces no safety risk or military threat whatsoever from the IRI, when America is viewed as an empire with numerous overseas allies and obligations, then its leaders sense all sorts of distant threats and act against them. America is then trapped in the empire created by its own government, the U.S.

Pompeo and the rest of the foreign policy and defense establishment are men and women of empire. The Congress is too. This means that they do not act on behalf of America and Americans. They act on behalf of the empire. They are always giving us Americans a song and dance that they’re acting for our own good, our safety.
Iran presents absolutely no threat to America. By the U.S. empire, however, it’s conceived as a threat to its interests. America is trapped by its acquiescence to the U.S., which is the government controlling the empire.

Posted by ΛΕΟΝΙΔΑΣ

Sunday, May 20, 2018

Bravo Hungary!!

By Free West Media

It is well-known that Hungary put up a border fence, but how does it really work to keep migrants out? It appears to be a multiple-layer border fence stopping illegal migration to the country almost totally. The legal framework is nothing short of astounding.

The main ruse of all Soros-funded NGOs is constant litigation. Today, most illegal immigrants enter countries in the EU legally but overstay or violate whatever visa they may have obtained.

When the illegals get detained waiting for a deportation trial, lawyers employed by NGOs funded by billionaire George Soros, have unlimited funds to plead for their release.

The litigation overcrowds detention centers, because the longer the deportation legal process takes, the fewer deportations can be carried out.

If the detention center overflows, the authorities have no other option but to let the low-risk migrants back into the population where they disappear. This is called catch-and-release, done to prevent the system from becoming overburdened.

The genius solution of the Viktor Orbán government to this particular problem, is that the border fence is not actually on the border. It is situated a few meters from it. So there is a strip of land which is legally Hungary, before the migrants hit the fence.

In some zones, the border fence cuts deep into Hungarian territory, creating large areas of Hungary outside of the fence. These are called “transit zones”.
When a migrant is caught inside Hungary, he is instantly transferred to the transit zone, through one of the gates. This act is not deportation, but detention as the migrant is still in Hungary.

Lawyers from these NGOs can do nothing to intervene since there are no legal remedies available to migrants inside Hungary, technically speaking.
The migrant is able is approach one of the barracks set up inside these zones where he could present an asylum request, wait for its processing and the subsequent court appeal if he is rejected.

The point is that while the migrant is waiting, he is outside of the fence, so he is not actually in Hungary, although legally he is.

The zone has no fence on the border side, so migrants are free to leave that way – back to where they came from. This measure obviously prevents overcrowding. Most migrants do not wait around for their trials, but go back to try to cross the border somewhere where it is easier to get into the EU.

But by not being present for a trial, the case is then dismissed.
So it does not matter how long it takes before a migrant is legally deported from Hungary, because he never entered Hungary and never burdened the state, since most of them leave the zone.

Posted by  ΛΕΟΝΙΔΑΣ

Thursday, May 17, 2018


By Thomas Woods

I just finished reading an article on "the new American aristocracy" in The Atlantic. The subtitle included this predictable reproof: "You're probably part of the problem."

It's the usual breast-beating about inequality, and -- of course -- the out-of-hand rejection of the possibility that some folks may make better decisions than others.

No, no, citizen. Why, to think that way would be to "blame the victim"!

(I've discussed the numbers and the details of inequality numerous times on the Tom Woods Show, incidentally.)

We are instead to believe that tens of millions of Americans are the passive victims of an impersonal "system" that keeps them down. All the responsibility and good behavior in the world can't deliver them from this wily trap, we are solemnly assured.

Naturally there are plenty of cases of people who through no fault of their own are in precarious situations, and in my personal life I've been all too happy to help those people.

But we are truly delusional if we do not recognize that some people hold juvenile, even destructive ideas about money, wealth, and work, and that this is why they do not make progress.

Time after time I've tried to help people we've come across who have struggled financially. And in all but one case, the money did no good. A lack of money was only superficially their problem.

The Atlantic complains about schools and their alleged lack of resources. But the schools do not lack resources -- $12K per student per year ought to be plenty to convey basic knowledge to students, yet surveys of American adults reveal them to be woefully ignorant of even the basics of science, history, or politics.

Meanwhile, the student population has increased by about eight percent since 1970, but nonteaching staff has increased by a mind-boggling 130 percent.

That's not the one percent's fault.

As for this being a uniquely difficult time to be alive, I've consistently dissented.

On my podcast I advertise a service I deeply believe in: Skillshare, which offers access to over 20,000 classes, each of which will make you a more in-demand professional, or will teach you a skill you can use to make a living. (The deal they're running now is two months' access for 99 cents.)

They don't pay me anything for mentioning them in this email, of course. But they're such a great example that I can't restrain myself.

Likewise, Udemy lets you take top-notch courses on anything under the sun. Here again you can learn a marketable skill in your spare time, from the comfort of your home.

This -- and a million other novelties like it -- is a veritable miracle. Nobody had opportunities like this before today. We cannot let the inequality hysteria distract us from these extraordinary advances.

Oddly enough, the article admits the following:

"In total population, average life expectancy, material wealth, artistic expression, rates of violence, and almost every other measure that matters for the quality of human life, the modern world is a dramatically different place than anything that came before."

So the moment you've decided to complain is the moment in history where world economies can support more people than ever before, and where the indicators of human well-being are at all-time highs?

But then we get this:

"Historians offer many complicated explanations for this happy turn in human events—the steam engine, microbes, the weather—but a simple answer precedes them all: equality."

Wait, so you're not even going to mention the historians who think economic freedom might have had a teensy bit to do with this explosion of wealth? Not so much as a word about that?

Or there's Deirdre McCloskey, who argues that it was an ideological change, a change in the way in which we view commerce and the people who engage in it, that made this extraordinary world possible.

Nope. "Microbes" and "the weather" are what we're told about.

But the idea that equality yielded us all this is most preposterous of all.

Equality in the sense that no artificial barrier prevents someone from rising above his original station is certainly important, but this is never the kind of equality the folks at The Atlantic have in mind.

In fact, the explosion in wealth that is conceded in the article occurred in the face of tremendous inequality.

Ludwig von Mises noted that in the old days, the rich man traveled in a coach-and-four, while the poor man traveled on foot. Today, the rich man travels in a fancy car while the poor man travels in a beat-up car.

That represents a dramatic decrease in inequality.

Average people now enjoy amenities that the richest monarchs of Europe could scarcely have imagined.

The world's greatest orchestras can be piped into our homes at the push of a button. The great works of literature are a mouse click away. We can take courses from the world's greatest universities without paying a dime.

Let that sink in. It's like science fiction.

And our complaint is that some people are really rich?

All of us are rich.

All of us -- even our poorest -- enjoy living standards and opportunities for enrichment that should make us full of joy and gratitude to be alive.

How dare we be ungrateful or envious.

The things I do on my laptop to support my family would have been inconceivable even 20 years ago.

Posted by ΛΕΟΝΙΔΑΣ

Wednesday, May 16, 2018

The New Policing

Your humble editor finds this posting more disturbing than usual for reasons related to nostalgia for "the way we were".
By Charles Goyette

We are all the beneficiaries of former CIA senior official Ray McGovern’s participation in the public debate. The more visibility he has, the more people that hear him, the better I like it.

I still treasure the moment when Ray confronted then-Defense Secretary Donald Rumsfeld about his Iraq war lies.

In the opening days of the elective war on Iraq Rumsfeld had made the outlandish claim the he knew where the non-existent WMDs were. When McGovern confronted the Pentagon chief in 2006 at a public forum in Atlanta, Rumsfeld pivoted to the brazen denial, insisting that he had said no such a thing – never mind that this is the electronic media age, and all anyone had to do was “roll the tape” to watch Rumsfeld’s balderdash.
 Rumsfeld on ABC’s This Week with George Stephanopoulos, March 2003: “We know where they are. They’re in the area around Tikrit and Baghdad and east, west, south, and north somewhat.”

I was especially glad to see Rumsfeld held to account, because my employer at the time, broadcast giant Clear Channel Communications, had “suspended” me for a day from my prime time talk show for calling Rumsfeld “the worst secretary of Defense since Robert Strange McNamara.”

Rumsfeld was eventually squeezed out of office when a growing number of admirals and generals, retired and with nothing to lose, began to complain about his incompetence.

Ray McGovern distinguished himself again last week at the Senate confirmation hearing for Trump’s torturer, Bloody Gina Haspel, to head the CIA.

While the evidence-destroying Haspel was untouched during her appearance before the Senate committee, Ray McGovern, who has actually served his country with integrity, was wrestled to the floor and dragged out.  See it HERE.

Take note of the way the thugs who took Ray down immediately began shouting the mantra “Stop resisting arrest.” They are

trained like performing seals to do this so that prosecutors can pile up phony charges. Watch the 78-year old Ray being swarmed and see if there is anything other than someone protecting himself from being dragged about and roughed up. But if a defendant as much as raises his hands to protect his face, or if his limbs don’t contort in the way the detaining thugs demand, the petty authoritarian’s catch-all charge of resisting arrest is waiting in the wings.

My friend Marc Victor, the best known criminal defense attorney in Arizona, is admired for his professional skill, tenacity, and principles.  Marc has represented more than 2,000 defendants, numerous high-profile cases, federal and state alike. His law firm, Attorneys for Freedom, is staffed with attorneys who share Marc’s pro-freedom views. And yet for all his experience, Marc confesses that it wasn’t until he had his own run in with goons shouting the obligatory “stop resisting arrest,” that he really understood the depth of the criminal justice system’s dark side.
Posted by ΛΕΟΝΙΔΑΣ

Tuesday, May 15, 2018

The Swiss Push Back

From Ammoland.com

Fairfax, VA – As NRA-ILA reported on April 27, peaceful Switzerland is in the crosshairs of international and domestic gun control advocates who are intent on abolishing the idyllic nation’s tradition of an armed citizenry. Using the 2017 changes to the European Firearms Directive as justification, these foreign and home-grown forces are attempting to burden the tranquil republic with gun controls the Swiss people have continually rejected. However, as was pointed out in a recent Bloomberg article, many Swiss citizens are refusing to take this assault on their inalienable rights and national sovereignty lying down.

In the Swiss tradition of neutrality, Switzerland is not a member of the European Union. However, Switzerland is a member of the Schengen Agreement, which created the Schengen Area. Schengen Area states have abolished the international border checks between them and permit the free movement of people throughout the area.

As members of the Schengen Area, non-EU members Switzerland, Norway, Iceland, and Lichtenstein are obligated to comply with certain EU laws. In 2017, the EU imposed further firearms restrictions on its Member States when it enacted a new version of the European Firearms Directive. Under the European Firearms Directive, all Member States, and those under the Schengen Agreement, are required to meet a minimum threshold of gun restrictions. The 2017 update enacted more stringent firearms registration and licensing requirements, and re-categorized certain types of semi-automatic firearms and their magazines in a way that nearly prohibits civilian possession.

The Swiss Federal Council has put forward gun control legislation that would bring the country’s gun laws in line with the new Firearms Directive, contending that the onerous new rules would require “little effort” from gun owners.
As NRA-ILA previously noted and the Bloomberg piece reiterates, Swiss gun rights group ProTell and the Swiss People’s Party (SVP) are leading the charge against the new legislation.
Referencing a Firearms Directive provision that would make it harder for Swiss citizens to possess semi-automatic firearms and the Swiss tradition of permitting members of the militia to possess their military rifle after service, Bloomberg quoted ProTell Secretary-General Robin Udry as stating, “It would mean that the day you leave the army, you’re no longer trusted with your SIG 550 and treated like a potential terrorist or criminal.”Udry went on to explain, “In Switzerland, these kind of guns are all very well-controlled, so why should we now accept legislation from the EU when we don’t have this problem?”

In a piece for the SVP website, National Councilor David Zuberbühler outlined the party’s position on the new EU gun law. Zuberbühler explained that complying with the new rules would result in more bureaucracy and less security, by requiring the Swiss cantons to establish large and costly administrative schemes. Noting that the new restrictions would do nothing to combat terrorism, the councilor explained that violent criminals would acquire their weapons on the black market. Zuberbühler also pointed out that in 2011 Swiss citizens had the opportunity to adopt strict gun controls through a referendum. These gun restrictions were rejected at the polls.

Further, there is increasing evidence that Swiss citizens are gearing up for a fight. According to English-language Swiss news site Swissinfo.ch, ProTell membership rose 44 percent from June 2017 to April 2018, fueled by opposition to the new EU gun restrictions. The site quoted interim ProTell President Jean-Luc Addor, who said, “This increase shows that more and more citizens are worried about their rights and freedoms in this country.”Confident in the Swiss people’s respect for their right to keep and bear arms, ProTell has warned politicians that it is prepared to gather the 50,000 signatures necessary to hold a referendum to reject the new EU gun laws.

As with other attempts to exert national sovereignty in the face of the EU superstate, some have resorted to fear tactics to force the Swiss to comply with the new Firearms Directive. According to the Bloomberg piece, Pierre-Alain Fridez of the Swiss Socialist party has warned that if the Swiss do not capitulate, they would be thrown “out of Schengen” and would “lose the freedom of movement.” Swedish Green Party Member of European Parliament Bodil Valero had a similar warning, stating that a failure to comply “would drive a wedge between the EU and Switzerland and could lead to sanction measures.”

Director of the Global Studies Institute at the University of Geneva Rene Schwok offered a more measured take on the potential referendum. Schwok explained, “The Federal Council and the parliaments will ultimately not automatically abandon Schengen just because of this vote…They will try to negotiate an arrangement with Brussels.”
NRA-ILA will continue to monitor Swiss gun rights supporters’ battle to preserve their republican heritage of an armed citizenry and will apprise our members of the latest developments in this vital fight for freedom.

Posted by ΛΕΟΝΙΔΑΣ

Monday, May 14, 2018

U.S. Spin Machine State Department

By Michael Rozeff

The new Secretion [sic] of State wants a new map of the Meddle East. To that end, he’s trumpeting propaganda on Iran, such as:
“I think Rouhani and Zarif need to explain why it’s the case that while this agreement was in place, Iran continued its march across the Middle East.”
What march? There hasn’t been any Iranian march! If Iran had invaded anyone, the noise at the U.N. would have been deafening.

By contrast, the U.S. marched, flew, drove, rolled and sailed into Iraq, Libya, Syria and Yemen.

If anyone is on the march in the Meddle East, it is the U.S.

Besides, the Iran nuclear deal didn’t preclude either Iran or the U.S. from altering their political, economic and military influence in other countries. Pompeo’s rhetoric is totally fraudulent. The new Secretion of State comes across as a man fond of deception.

Pompeo lies. He claims Iran has “now fired missiles into an airport where Americans travel each day in Riyadh.” Those responsible for firing missiles at Riyadh’s airport haven’t been identified as Iranians. A Reuters report says otherwise: “Yemen’s Houthis fired a salvo of ballistic missiles at Saudi Arabia’s capital on Wednesday.”

Pompeo knows he’s exaggerating, misleading and lying. His purpose is to create an image of Iran that’s so negative that Trump can have a free hand in choosing Iranian targets to attack, and can place Iran on the defensive, and can justify Israeli attacks, and can justify Saudi forces in Syria.

Iran definitely has advanced its influence in Lebanon, Syria, Iraq, Yemen, and what’s left of Palestine ever since the U.S. lost its control of Iran in 1979. So what? Let these countries deal with their own affairs. U.S. meddling and missteps in the Meddle East going back for 70+ years have brought about its own loss of influence.

There was never good reason, including oil security, for the U.S. to have gotten so deeply involved in this region. The price of oil security has been demonstrably exorbitant. There has never been good reason for the U.S. to aim at controlling Meddle East governments, supplying vast armaments, participating in wars, all the while choosing up allies and making enemies. The entire project of empire and oil security has been fruitless. To continue this posture now with the aim of controlling Iran’s aspirations is equally irrational.

Posted by ΛΕΟΝΙΔΑΣ

Sunday, May 13, 2018

Another Lost War About to Begin?

By Eric Margolis

Israel launched waves of air attacks and ground shelling on a score of alleged Iranian military positions in Syria this week.   Was this a big step forward in the plan by Israel’s leader Benjamin Netanyahu and his ally Donald Trump to provoke a major war with Iran?

It certainly looks so.  The US, Saudi Arabia and Israel all recently suffered a stinging defeat in Syria. Their campaign to overthrow the Assad government in Damascus by using the rag-tag ISIS movement, then Sunni Muslim jihadist wild men, was defeated by the Syrian Army, backed by Russian air power, Lebanon’s Hezbollah and some Iranian militia groups and army advisors.

Israel now claims to have wiped out more than a score of Iranian positions in Syria.  As far as we can tell, these were minor logistics or communications facilities, not the backbone of a supposed Iranian offensive against Israel.

In fact, the alleged Iranian rocket barrage was directed at the Israeli-occupied Golan Heights that were illegally annexed and occupied after the 1973 Arab-Israeli War and are still held, legally, as part of Syria. Israel is very nervous about having world attention drawn to its continued occupation of the strategic Golan Heights from which Israeli heavy artillery can reach Damascus.

But now that the Trump administration has fallen fully under the influence of the pro-war neocons, an attempt to overthrow the Iranian government appears highly likely, using both military intervention and intensified economic warfare.

Iran has been under siege by the US since the American/British installed shah was overthrown by a popular revolution in 1979. The CIA and Britain’s MI6 have mounted numerous attempts to oust the Islamic Republic and re-install a client ruler.

Ironically, the ‘democratic’ western powers – the US, Britain and France – rely on medieval monarchs and dictators to control the Mideast while democratic politicians and movements are ignored.  Iran, in spite of its many rigidities and failings, remains one of the region’s more democratic states.   Ask our Saudi or Kuwaiti allies when was the last time they held a real election?

The failure of western intelligence services to provoke serious uprisings in Iran (or Russia), means that the military option is increasingly tempting.   This probably means provoking military clashes with Iran in the Gulf leading to full-scale attacks on its nuclear infrastructure and industry.   US warplanes and warships are actively probing Iran’s borders.  In addition, US forces are getting ever more deeply involved in the Yemen War.

When the US last considered a major attack on Iran during the Bush years, the Pentagon (which opposed the idea) estimated it would need 2,800 air strikes against Iran on Day One alone.

Many of the same war party crowd that engineered the 2003 US invasion of Iraq are now running the Trump administration.  Their goal is to cripple Iran and leave the Mideast to joint Saudi-Egyptian-Israeli control.

Recall President George W. Bush’s assertion that once he had crushed Iraq the next targets of US military intervention would be Lebanon, Syria, Iran and then Pakistan.

Invading Iran would not be easy.  Iran has very little capability to project power beyond its borders.  Its air force, artillery and tanks are decrepit.  America controls the skies from Morocco to Afghanistan.  Iran is vulnerable to raids and small incursions but subjugating this large, mountainous nation of 80 million would be very difficult.

In fact, and Iranian Revolutionary Guards commander once told me, ‘let the Americans invade. They will break their teeth on Iran.’  Over-confidence, of course, but he had a point.  Fighting on the defensive in urban areas, Iran could offer fierce resistance.

America’s imperial machine, like its British Imperial predecessor, likes small, easy wars against small, backwards nations.  Iran would be very different.

As we have just seen with North Korea, Iran’s best survival strategy, short of security guarantees by Russia and China, would be to race to produce a small number of nuclear weapons to deter attacks by the US and Israel.

Europe, which co-sponsored the Iran nuclear act and is now humiliated by Trump reneging on the deal, is too weak and disorganized to guarantee the pact and stand up to Washington.  This is too bad.  Now would have been a fine time for the EU to assert its independence from US hegemony and begin building its own independent European military forces.

Posted by ΛΕΟΝΙΔΑΣ

Saturday, May 12, 2018

The End in Sight


The welfare state is not a response to technological or economic conditions that produce hardship and an underclass. The welfare state is created by politicians who institute it. It is politically driven. They could not accomplish this without the existence of a cash cow of productivity growth, but the latter doesn’t fore-ordain that a welfare state be brought into being. Productivity growth doesn’t produce unemployment and people who cannot survive by their own work. There are prices for all sorts of labor, if the labor markets are left to adjust freely.

Productivity growth, brought about via capitalism, brings down the prices of goods needed to survive, but central bankers inflate. This creates differential effects on people in different classes. Inflation robs those most, the lower classes and less-educated, whose earning power is marginal and who do not have the knowledge to cope with its effects. It penalizes “thrift and hard work”, Rothbard tells us. It aids those most in a position to hold wealth in real assets, those who are well-connected and educated.

“Spending and going into debt are encouraged; thrift and hard work discouraged and penalized. Not only that: the groups that benefit are the special interest groups who are politically close to the government and can exert pressure to have the new money spent on them so that their incomes can rise faster than the price inflation. Government contractors, politically connected businesses, unions, and other pressure groups will benefit at the expense of the unaware and unorganized public.”

The welfare state can only expand as long as the value of the “nation’s assets” outpaces the value of the “nation’s liabilities”. Wealth growth has to exceed debt growth in order to create a cash cow. When and if this condition fails, then the welfare state halts its growth. Demographics alone can cause this to occur. Wars can deplete the assets. Over-expansion of benefits causes excessive debt growth. Poor economic policies that stymie capitalistic policies cause decline in productivity. These are the kinds of factors that place a strain on the welfare state.
Politicians are myopic, and they tend to their own self-interest. They do not listen to the David Stockmans of this world until they run headlong into a crisis.

When the cash cow fund stops growing, benefits stabilize or decline. Taxpayers feel the squeeze. The welfare state goes into reverse when the nation’s liabilities exceed the nation’s assets. The producers of wealth feel the pinch as taxes rise and the recipients find benefits declining. The longevity of the welfare state depends on productivity and the levels of financing of welfare payments by debt and taxes.

Posted by ΛΕΟΝΙΔΑΣ

Friday, May 11, 2018

More War Drums?

President Donald Trump kept one of his campaign promises and announced he was pulling out of the deal with Iran brokered by his predecessor.

“I am announcing today that the United States will withdraw from the Iran nuclear deal,” Trump said in a White House press conference. He has long been critical of the deal because it contains a “sunset clause, a provision that allows key limitations on Iran’s use and development of new technologies for enrichment of uranium to end beginning in 2025, and because he believed it was insufficient to check Iran’s weapons development program.

But Iran has not had a nuclear weapons program for at least 15 years. As the Los Angeles Times reported in 2012:
U.S. intelligence agencies don’t believe Iran is actively trying to build an atomic bomb.
A highly classified U.S. intelligence assessment circulated to policymakers early last year largely affirms that view, originally made in 2007. Both reports, known as national intelligence estimates, conclude that Tehran halted efforts to develop and build a nuclear warhead in 2003.
The most recent report, which represents the consensus of 16 U.S. intelligence agencies, indicates that Iran is pursuing research that could put it in a position to build a weapon, but that it has not sought to do so.
What’s more, Iran is a signatory to the Nuclear Non-Proliferation Treaty. That gives it a right to develop nuclear energy. But it also puts inspectors from the U.N.’s International Atomic Energy Agency on the ground in Iran to keep tabs on the country’s nuclear activities.

As Pat Buchanan notes, Iran is making no demands on the U.S., its patrol boats have ceased harassing U.S. warships patrolling the Persian Gulf (as if they could cause a lot of damage with their navy), and their forces in Iraq and Syria (countries into which they were invited) do not interfere with U.S. operations against ISIS.
Buchanan writes:
Iran has never tested a nuclear device and never enriched uranium to weapons grade. Under the deal, Iran has surrendered 95 percent of its uranium, shut down most of its centrifuges and allowed cameras and inspectors into all of its nuclear facilities.
Why Iran is abiding by the deal is obvious. For Iran it is a great deal.
Having decided in 2003 not to build a bomb, Iran terminated its program. Then Tehran decided to negotiate with the U.S. for return of $100 billion in frozen assets from the Shah’s era — by proving they were not doing what every U.S. intelligence agency said they were not doing.

Should Iran rashly decide to go for a nuclear weapon, it would have to fire up centrifuges to enrich uranium to a level that they have never done, and then test a nuclear device, and then weaponize it.

A crash bomb program would be detected almost instantly and bring a U.S. ultimatum which, if defied, could bring airstrikes. Why would Trump risk losing the means to monitor Iran’s compliance with the deal?
Trump’s decision to pull from the deal is a bad one for Americans. It gives the U.S. less access to Iran’s nuclear intentions. It increases tensions in the area. And it sets the stage for a more expansive war in the region.

But Trump’s war cabinet must be rubbing their hands together with glee. They, and their neocon/globalist enablers, have been itching for war for almost 30 years, as Bob Livingston has told you before.

Posted by ΛΕΟΝΙΔΑΣ

Wednesday, May 09, 2018

Lying Bureaucrats; So What's New?


 The Broward County school and law enforcement officials have finally admitted Marjory Stoneman Douglas High School shooter, Nikolas Cruz, was indeed a participant in the “Promise Program”; a corrupt diversionary program intended to keep students out of the legal system.  Until today school and county officials had denied Cruz’s participation.

Florida: Broward school district officials admitted Sunday that the confessed Marjory Stoneman Douglas High School gunman was assigned to a controversial disciplinary program, after the superintendent repeatedly claimed Nikolas Cruz had “no connection” to the alternative punishment designed to limit on-campus arrests.

[…] When asked for a response, a spokeswoman for Superintendent Robert Runcie stated on Friday that district administrators were aggressively analyzing Cruz’s records.

[…] The Broward Sheriff’s Office has also said Cruz didn’t attend PROMISE.
“The school board reports that there was no PROMISE program participation,” BSO representative Jack Dale said during a recent meeting of a new state commission tasked with investigating the shooting.  (read more)
Nothing good comes from this admission now. Heck, it’s not an admission – they just got caught lying.  Notice who was lying: “the sheriff’s office and the school board.”  Think about it. Nice display of adult moral values for the students, no?

Nothing will change. The program continues today.  Illegal acts are still being covered up, and ever-increasing unlawful behavior is still being hidden in an effort to attain more favorable school statistics, and the subsequent money. Nothing will change there, nothing.

It didn’t change when Trayvon Martin was involved; they covered-up for him.  It won’t change just because Nikolas Cruz was involved.

  Unfortunate, but the corruption runs too deep…. Way, way too deep.

Posted by ΛΕΟΝΙΔΑΣ

Tuesday, May 08, 2018

The Civizilation Wreckers Next Target

By Thomas E Woods

Connecticut just became the tenth blue state to pledge to cast its electoral votes for whichever presidential candidate wins the popular vote nationally.


Because according to the measure's proponents, the electoral college -- along with everything else that's more than 10 minutes old -- is backward and stupid.

Here's one more step toward making the United States into a giant, undifferentiated blob, as opposed to the collection of distinct societies it was originally intended to be. T
he Constitution refers to the United States in the plural every time, and the way the Constitution and the Union were originally understood, the "popular vote" was an irrelevancy.

During the World Series, for example, we don’t add up the total number of runs scored by each team over the course of the series, and decide who won on that basis. We count up how many games each team won.

Thus: Game 1: Red Sox 10, Mets 0
Game 2: Red Sox 15, Mets 1
Game 3: Red Sox 5, Mets 2
Game 4: Red Sox 1, Mets 2
Game 5: Red Sox 0, Mets 1
Game 6: Red Sox 2, Mets 3
Game 7: Red Sox 3, Mets 4

In this imaginary series the Red Sox scored 36 runs while the Mets scored only 13, yet everyone would acknowledge that the Mets won the series. Not a single sports fan would be running around demanding that we count the total number of runs instead, or insisting that the way we determine the World Series winner is sinister.

But I think this is the correct analogy with the electoral college. How many games — e.g., how many political societies, albeit weighted to some degree by population — did you win?

Also, the electoral college puts an upper bound on how much support you can earn from any one state. Even if your whole campaign is geared toward taxing the rest of the country and handing the money to California, you still can’t get more than 55 electoral votes from that state. So to some extent, the electoral college forces the candidate to run a national race more than would be necessary otherwise.

A group called National Popular Vote, which seeks to abolish the electoral college, claims that "presidential candidates have no reason to pay attention to the issues of concern to voters in states where the statewide outcome is a foregone conclusion."

But this problem becomes much worse without the electoral college. If there is no limit to the support I can get from California and New York, then I'll campaign in those states like a madman. At least the electoral college puts something of a brake on this kind of strategy.

A brief note about Trump's defeat in the popular vote: had the election been decided on the basis of the popular vote, Trump would have campaigned differently in the first place. Also, more people in, say, California would have bothered to vote for him. So we can’t know that he would have lost the popular vote had those been the rules.

What we do know is that every step toward making the U.S. into a giant blob instead of a decentralized collection of societies is a step toward more centralized, bureaucratic management of society, and away from liberty.

We're not taught to think this way in school, of course.

Posted by ΛΕΟΝΙΔΑΣ

Sunday, May 06, 2018

The Horsefly Cometh

By James Howard Kunstler

You can see where this Mueller thing is going: to the moment when the Golden Golem of Greatness finally swats down the political horsefly that has orbited his glittering brainpan for a whole year, and says, “There! It’s done.”

It suggests that Civil War Two will end up looking a whole lot more like the French Revolution than Civil War One. The latter unfurled as a solemn tragedy; the former as a Coen Brothers style opéra bouffe bloodbath. Having executed the presidential swat to said orbiting horsefly, Trump will try to turn his attention to the affairs of the nation, only to find that it is insolvent and teetering on the most destructive workout of bad debt the world has ever seen. And then his enemies will really go to work. In the process, they’ll probably wreck the institutional infrastructure needed to run a republic in constitutional democracy mode.

They got a good start in politicizing the upper ranks of the FBI, a fatal miscalculation based on the certainty of a Hillary win, which would have enabled the various schemers in the J. Edgar Hoover building to just fade back into the procedural woodwork of the agency and get on with life. Instead, their shenanigans were exposed and so far one key player, Deputy Director Andrew McCabe, was hung out to dry by a committee of his fellow agency execs for lying about his official conduct. Long about now, you kind of wonder: is that where it ends for him? Seems like everybody else (and his uncle) is getting indicted for lying to the FBI. How about Mr. McCabe, since that is exactly why his colleagues at the FBI fired him?

Perhaps further resolution of this murky situation awaits Inspector General Michael Horowitz’s forthcoming report, which the media seems to have forgotten about lately. An awful lot of the mischief at the FBI and its parent agency, the Department of Justice, is already on the public record, for instance the conflicting statements of Andrew McCabe and his former boss James Comey concerning who illegally leaked what to the press. On the face of it, it looks pretty bad when at least one of these Big Fish at the top of a supposedly incorruptible agency is lying. There are at least a dozen other Big Fish in there who still have some serious ‘splainin’ to do, and why not in the grand jury setting?

Nobody knows where the current Attorney General, Jeff Sessions, is in all this — and “is” may be too strong a word to describe his wraith-like tenure this past year. He seems less present than the portraits of his dead predecessors lining the hallway outside his office, considering the lively swirl of allegations all around him. Well, he did appoint yet another special counsel, an obscure US Attorney from Utah, John Huber, to evaluate several heaps of FBI dirty laundry, most particularly the strange and baffling treatment that Hillary Clinton has received in the matter of the Steele Dossier, the email server inquiry dropped by Comey, and the 2012 Uranium One incident that abracadabra’d about $150 million (from wealthy Russians!) into the Clinton Foundation coffers while she was Secretary of State. Mr. Huber is charged to follow up anything the Inspector General discovers to be a possible breach of the law.

But it’s finally back to Mr. Mueller, the zeppelin-sized horsefly circling the head of state. There was that Russia thing that set off the awful commotion in the FBI, which arose first in the charge that the newly-appointed National Security Advisor had a couple of conversations with the Russian ambassador during the presidential transition period. The President-elect’s furious adversaries managed to put across the story that American officials are not supposed to talk to ambassadors from foreign countries, which is about the most absurd proposition imaginable — except in a land where school kids are taught nothing about government or history. Anyway, Mr. Flynn was not even indicted for that, but rather for supposedly lying about it to a delegation of interrogators from Mueller’s office. My guess is that Mr. Trump will sack Mr. Mueller when the IG’s report comes out and the shady machinations that brought Mueller onto the scene are revealed in full. The #Resistance will lose its avatar and impeachment will become the sole campaign issue for November 2018.

Reprinted with permission from Kunstler.com.

Posted by ΛΕΟΝΙΔΑΣ

Saturday, May 05, 2018

Cultural "Appropriation"

By Thomas DiLorenzo

The latest fad of the Western-culture-hating Marxists in academe, television, the media, etc., etc. is “cultural appropriation.”  Adopting or even imitating non-American cultures is a grave sin.  At least one university has even prohibited the wearing of sombreros on Cinco de Mayo Day (today) or calling it “Drinko de Mayo” (which would seem more appropriate and fitting, by the way).

OK.  In the name of egalitarianism, equality, all men are created equal, bla, bla, bla, bla, bla, then neither should foreign-born people in the U.S. “appropriate” our culture.  Like speaking English, for example, or playing or watching American baseball, football, and basketball.  Not to mention NASCAR.  No listening to or playing jazz, Motown, Country, or Lynrd Skynrd music.  No reading novels by American authors or purchasing artwork by American artists.  Talk about appropriation!  Or even wearing clothing with American sports teams logos on it.

We also have a culture of capitalism that is more pervasive than all of the “Third World” countries that a lot of immigrants come from (which of course is why they are “Third World” economically).  So it stands to reason that only native-born Americans should be allowed to participate in American capitalism.  If you come from a country with a dictatorship and essentially no civil liberties (Venezuela, for instance), then of course you should never be allowed to appropriate our democracy by voting here, and you should not have any of our civil liberties, either.

This is just a very short list for starters.

Posted by ΛΕΟΝΙΔΑΣ

Friday, May 04, 2018

Latest in the Mueller Star Chamber Affair

A federal judge on Friday harshly rebuked Special Counsel Robert Mueller’s team during a hearing for ex-Trump campaign chairman Paul Manafort – suggesting they lied about the scope of the investigation, are seeking “unfettered power” and are more interested in bringing down the president.

"You don't really care about Mr. Manafort,” U.S. District Judge T.S. Ellis III told Mueller’s team. “You really care about what information Mr. Manafort can give you to lead you to Mr. Trump and an impeachment, or whatever."
Further, Ellis demanded to see the unredacted “scope memo,” a document outlining the scope of the special counsel’s Russia probe that congressional Republicans have also sought.

The hearing, where Manafort’s team fought to dismiss an 18-count indictment on tax and bank fraud-related charges, took a confrontational turn as it was revealed that at least some of the information in the investigation derived from an earlier Justice Department probe – in the U.S. attorney’s office for the Eastern District of Virginia.

Manafort’s attorneys argue the special counsel does not have the power to indict him on the charges they have brought – and seemed to find a sympathetic ear with Ellis.

The Reagan-appointed judge asked Mueller’s team where they got the authority to indict Manafort on alleged crimes dating as far back as 2005.

The special counsel argues that Deputy Attorney General Rod Rosenstein granted them broad authority in his May 2, 2017 letter appointing Mueller to this investigation. But after the revelation that the team is using information from the earlier DOJ probe, Ellis said that information did not “arise” out of the special counsel probe – and therefore may not be within the scope of that investigation.

“We don’t want anyone with unfettered power,” he said.
Mueller’s team says its authorities are laid out in documents including the August 2017 scope memo – and that some powers are actually secret because they involve ongoing investigations and national security matters that cannot be publicly disclosed.

Ellis seemed amused and not persuaded.

He summed up the argument of the Special Counsel’s Office as, "We said this was what [the] investigation was about, but we are not bound by it and we were lying."

He referenced the common exclamation from NFL announcers, saying: "C'mon man!"

Trump himself drew attention to the judge’s comments later Friday afternoon, during an NRA convention in Texas.

“It’s a witch hunt,” he said. “I love fighting these battles.”

The judge also gave the government two weeks to hand over the unredacted “scope memo” or provide an explanation why not -- after prosecutors were reluctant to do so, claiming it has material that doesn’t pertain to Manafort.

“I’ll be the judge of that,” Ellis said.

House Republicans have also sought the full document, though the Justice Department previously released a redacted version, which includes information related to Manafort but not much else.

The charges in federal court in Virginia were on top of another round of charges in October. Manafort has pleaded not guilty to both rounds. The charges filed earlier this year include conspiring against the United States, conspiring to launder money, failing to register as an agent of a foreign principal and providing false statements.

Earlier this year, Ellis suggested that Manafort could face life in prison, and “poses a substantial flight risk” because of his “financial means and international connections to flee and remain at large.”

Posted by ΛΕΟΝΙΔΑΣhttp://www.foxnews.com/politics/2018/05/04/federal-judge-accuses-muellers-team-lying-trying-to-target-trump-cmon-man.html

Tuesday, May 01, 2018

A New Precedent?

By Mike Rozeff

If I were Trump, I’d take the 5th if I had to and not answer Mueller’s 48 questions. Before doing that, I’d use as many legal grounds as I could find not to respond to these questions in any way. I’d start with the UN Declaration of Human Rights, using those provisions that mirror or relate to our own Constitution. Then I’d reinforce the argument by bringing in these parallel provisions. Finally, I’d bring in any and all pertinent rights that are mentioned in the Constitution or not mentioned.

Article 6: Everyone has the right to recognition everywhere as a person before the law.
Trump as President retains his rights as a person. His office doesn’t require that he lose or give up those rights.

Article 7: All are equal before the law and are entitled without any discrimination to equal protection of the law.
Trump is entitled to his lawful protections, without being discriminated against because of his position.

Article 12: No one shall be subjected to arbitrary interference with his privacy, family, home or correspondence, nor to attacks upon his honour and reputation. Everyone has the right to the protection of the law against such interference or attacks.

Trump should argue that the Mueller inquiry has already violated this article in several ways, such as by the raids on his lawyer. He has already argued that the inquiry is built upon insubstantial grounds, which means the “arbitrary interference” with his affairs. Actually, it’s even worse. The interference has been with evil motives against him and his policies.

Article 17: (1) Everyone has the right to own property alone as well as in association with others. (2) No one shall be arbitrarily deprived of his property.
The raids on trump’s lawyer, Michael Cohen, exceeded legal bounds. Argue against the warrant, and argue that personal property was stolen arbitrarily. Argue that the search and seizure was an illegal “fishing expedition”. Separately, argue again that the entire basis of Mueller’s investigation and this search and seizure are arbitrary as well as the result of a plot against Trump.

Article 19: “Everyone has the right to freedom of opinion and expression; this right includes freedom to hold opinions without interference and to seek, receive and impart information and ideas through any media and regardless of frontiers.

Argue that Trump’s communications during the campaign are protected speech. Collusion, whatever it may mean in this context, is not a crime. Trump had every right to confer with others, about Russia, Putin, or anything else. This argument doesn’t admit that he did this, but says that even if he did, it was his right and protected.

Article 20: “(1) Everyone the right to freedom of peaceful assembly and association.
(2) No one may be compelled to belong to an association.
Trump, Jr. and others had every right to meet with someone like the Russian lawyer. Manafort had every right to associate with his Ukrainian clients. Trump could associate or not with whom he pleased. Mere association is not a crime. The second part of this article implies that no one may be compelled NOT to associate peacefully with others, as in meetings. There can be no law forbidding peaceful association, chats, dinners, meetings, correspondence, etc. Mueller’s inquiry is indeed a fishing expedition and witch hunt that looks for crimes being committed where there is no probable cause.

Like anyone else, Trump has a right to remain silent. He or his lawyers should invoke it and explain exactly why he’s doing this, despite his lack of guilt. They should argue openly that he wants to avoid false entrapment, to avoid vague or meritless charges like obstruction of justice, collusion and lying under oath. The argument should be that Trump has a right to avoid the appearance of wrongdoing, and that it is all too easy for clever prosecutors to create such an appearance. It is easy for people’s memories to fade, for there to be confusion and disagreement over what was said or done, for witnesses to lie or exaggerate or misinform in order to save their skins, and for patterns to be read into a series of events that were not actually part of any patterned plot. Trump has every reason and right to avoid these pitfalls.

My own opinion is that Mueller’s questions are attempts to trap Trump. Answering them in any way, unless one is extraordinarily clever and careful in one’s choice of words, is almost surely to result in self-entrapment. Trump is not that careful or clever, often far from it. And his speech is often elliptical and curt. He’ll get himself into big trouble unless he remains silent.

The Mueller inquiry against Trump is horrible. It’s part of the Democratic-Deep State coup against Trump. Trump should never ever have been saying he wanted to testify or speak with Mueller about these matters. He should kiss-off Mueller on the 48 questions, even if he doesn’t fire him.
Trump’s rights are being seriously threatened and violated. This is an American version of a Stalin-Beria era interrogation and subsequent show trial.

Trump should not answer Mueller’s questions. He should ignore a subpoena if that happens next. He should make his case as strongly as possible in public, however, not only with brief tweets but with a lawyer’s brief that contains a complete narrative of who dreamed up the Russian angle to smear him and his campaign, who amplified it, what their motives were and how the dossier and other events created the coup against him. Mueller is part of that narrative. He should also take this lynch attempt to the public by speeches. He should use all the rights arguments he can muster. He should make clear that the aim of the anti-Trump conspiracy has been to hound him from office. And if he himself has made mistakes that played into their hands, he should acknowledge that he erred. He should confirm that he will not cooperate with Mueller in any way. He has to make clear why he is not going to answer Mueller, that he won’t cooperate with a criminal conspiracy to overturn the election and remove him from office, that the investigation has no legitimate basis, that the investigation has an illegitimate basis, that the investigation is violating basic rights, that collusion with Russia has been a sham charge from the outset. Trump should argue that he has been defamed and smeared and name the people who have done it and why they did it.

Posted by ΛΕΟΝΙΔΑΣ