tax dollars at work, yeah

Yesterday, the US Food and Drug Administration granted approval of one of the C-19 pharmaceuticals for persons 16 years and up. For those who are paying attention, this does not exactly provide warm fuzzies. 

Perhaps most concerning is the abandonment of protocols and transparency. Right out of the gate, the approval was based on only six months of data, about a year and a half before clinical studies could even be complete. 

Conducting studies assumes we care about the data, but this approval provided no visible data, no review of the data, nor a rigorous discussion of said data. The FDA abandoned its own protocol to hold a formal advisory committee meeting on the topic, conveniently avoiding scrutiny and discussion. (In fact, that committee only met twice this year, on Feb. 26 to consider the J & J EUA, and on June 10 to discuss pediatric use.)

Bear in mind, that discussion would have centered on the drugmaker’s own clinical study.

According to the FDA, “More than half of the clinical trial participants were followed for safety outcomes for at least four months after the second dose. Overall, approximately 12,000 recipients have been followed for at least six months.” This, when the original cohort in the study was 44,000. Some of those trial participants gone missing include the control group, in an obvious corruption of ‘science’, since placebo participants eventually took the drug under study.

This aggressive push to approval is hard to fathom especially in light of the truly disconcerting numbers in the Vaccine Adverse Event Reporting System database. The lack of explanation or insight or basic follow-up on the historically high numbers, including the shocking number of deaths, cannot simply be ignored. One cannot wave the numbers away implying it’s all just a coincidence without any forthcoming, honest follow-up. Unless, I suppose, you’re the FDA and media relying on a complacent public.

Speaking of public, yesterday’s approval also brushed off the long-standing protocol of a public hearing. Such lack of transparency and dissing of the public and democratic values is consistent with what Harvard experts deduced about corporate capture of federal regulatory bodies.

All that aside, why the big rush anyway? Despite assertions to the contrary, this hasty, cloaked approval will do nothing to coerce the vaccine-hesitant. In fact, the secrecy, haste, and refusal to openly broach developing data provokes further concern in that group and others. The landscape of suppression, censorship, and propaganda does not encourage trust either.

The big rush does, however, pave the way for further and broader mandates. Strangely, this full court press comes in the context of increasing data that instead suggest caution and a closer look.

Health aside, this blasé corruption of process bears implications about our governance which should concern any citizen. Blindly finding comfort in this approval is misplaced trust. We should expect and demand better.

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Stand for Freedom

independence

Can’t help but be thoughtful today about freedom and government. Today marks US Independence Day, commemorating the moment when the colonies shook off King George III and declared their independence. 

“Life, Liberty, and the pursuit of Happiness,” the declaration tells us, are “unalienable Rights,” and that “to secure these rights, Governments are instituted among Men, deriving their just powers from the consent of the governed.”

And here we are, 245 years later, now with firsthand experience of a noun that shouldn’t really be in a democratic lexicon, “lockdown.” Now, in a time when we have somehow adjusted to government/corporate censorship of individual voices and information, and, especially of late, the labelling of dissenting views as “extremist.” Now, when our personal information, communication, medical choices, and whereabouts are tracked on an epic scale. Now, when the sudden bombing of a distant nation, also holding people with unalienable rights, barely registers, and when information is suppressed, withheld, or manipulated by what was once known as a free press. Now, when taxes are siphoned from the masses and put to pockets and purposes perhaps not quite in keeping with the notion that “all men are created equal,” as the declaration noted.

But such things happen dependent on the consent of the governed and on the tax dollars of said governed. It is with the forbearance of the people that malfeasance blossoms. 

Just like other animals, each one affirming Life, Liberty, and the pursuit of Happiness, we need to be present, alert, and protective of those unalienable rights. It is on us to actively pursue and empower leadership that supports and implements our rights and the vision we hold for our free country and world. And, in that respect, each one of us must be a leader, awake to and informed by our innately compassionate hearts.

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two birthdays

Happy Birthday, Julian Assange! The man is 50 years old today, sitting in Belmarsh prison. Let this be the day he goes finally free.

It is unimaginable that Assange’s imprisonment carries on even as the case built against him, always specious and never on solid ground, completely crumbles to bits. The main witness in that “case” recently confessed that it was simply lies he told about Assange (Stundin 6_26_21). But perhaps you haven’t seen that information, because, surprise, mainstream media won’t carry it.

This weekend, here in the US, we are observing another sort of birthday, Independence Day, celebrating all things freedom with flags waving everywhere. This, while Julian Assange is imprisoned and tortured for the crime of revealing truth. This, while Edward Snowden remains unable to return home, for the same crime. This, while Daniel Hale faces 50 years in prison. This, while Reality Winner tries to reassemble her life.

And, very sadly, it seems we are not learning the lessons of the truths so revealed or the terrible consequences government is prepared to wield against those who stand for uncomfortable truths.

This is not just about Julian Assange. This is very much about YOU. It’s about your kids and theirs. It’s about freedom and justice, truth and peace, all around the world.

FREE ASSANGE.

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fourth estate

I don’t know about you, but, for me, the news, even as it dominates our daily lives, has become absolutely worthless. It’s become nonstop coverage of government, government figures, government data, government posturing, government restrictions, government policing, government cover-ups, government blah-blah-blah. Oh, and, still, a whole lot of sports. 

I’m really sick and tired of government 24-7. I have no use for glorified sports. And it all looks like propaganda to me.

Remember what news used to be? 

Good old-fashioned newspapers used to have a local, community focus. Yes, you could read what your local government was up to, but you could also read about businesses, about community programs, about social events, about local concerns. There used to be whole sections devoted to features — glimpses into what cool things people in your community were into, along with what churches were up to, what was going on in the schools (actual education, not just controls and sports), art, music, books, movies, cooking, and more. Columnists were local people writing about the community, or about how big issues impacted the local community. 

These newspapers actually served to connect us with our communities and society and ideas.

Now, there isn’t much community to be had — in newspapers or elsewhere. Most community newspapers were swallowed up by national media entities which reduced them to a local story or two surrounded by a wealth of wire stories on the usual government and sports crap. They might still include some local crime information because that’s useful, divisive propaganda. They might throw in a dose of a generic wire feature to give the illusion there’s real people out there — somewhere.

I look at the last vestiges we have of local news, and it’s all pretty much worthless whether online or in print. It’s just garbage. 

The big news outlets, obviously, amount to garbage, serving only to remind us on a daily basis how extremely propagandized we are. 

Hence, there’s the usual sorting through of blogs and social media, much of which is now conveniently censored. 

It all serves to erode and oppress community and agency, and, God forbid, ideas. And it’s no accident. Nevertheless…

seems like an opportunity.

we deserve better

Hell, yeah. It was a breath of fresh air to see first Tulsi Gabbard and now, yes, even Donald Trump, call out and expose the supposed Covid relief bill Congress pushed through. If it wasn’t already apparent, the approval of this ‘bill’ demonstrates such open contempt for the American people that no doubt can remain in the mind of any thinking person about the breathtaking, evil corruption in our “representation.” 

The 5,000-plus pages of brazen handouts to an astonishing array of entities, both foreign and domestic, under the guise of Covid relief is beyond insulting, it is criminal. The people we’re paying in Washington need to be fired, yesterday. 

And where, by the way, was incoming Joe Biden while this reprehensible act played out? After the fact, he suggests that he’ll push for more assistance in the next bill. Sorry, Joe, but your “down payment” is a day late and a dollar short. Come on, man.

Failing an overthrow of Congress, I’d settle at this point for a clean Covid Relief Bill, with none of the outright theft and sleight of hand that constitutes the majority of what Congress just passed. This would be a bill that includes actual relief for the people. And that does not amount to any 5,000 pages, mind you. While that’s going down, let’s boot Pelosi, too, and have some real discussion on healthcare for pete’s sake.

The people. That’s us. The ones paying these cretins. The ones paying for all this corruption. Wake up. Step up. We deserve better.

voices

No more. Who can read of yet another person put to death at the hands of government and not feel ashamed, angry, sad, revolted? This is so wrong on every level, and it must end. These are the leaders to whom the American people have granted power. These are the tax dollars that came out of your pockets put to such evil purposes, as if those aren’t many. We sit, silently absorbing these sick acts as they appear across our screens, supposing we have nothing to do with it. But in our silence we grant these powers to these leaders, we pay the bills, and we must finally recognize our complicity in these beyond-reprehensible acts. We must rise up, together, to speak against these murders and more. Media claims that would-be President Biden will put a stop to it, and that had better be the case. But with more of these murders planned between now and the 20th, cry out, “Stop!”, in the name of decency, humanity. Sadly, this abhorrent issue is one of many where we need to find our collective, compassionate voice and power. America, we can be so much better than this. Let us begin to reshape our country with compassion.

question not

No matter the church doors shut,
science is the new religion.
Cover your face, humble yourself in solitary contemplation,
bow in fear of the awesome power of your new god. 

Believe! the white-coated preachers call.
Faith and money will save you.
Proffer ample gold at the altar of the chosen science,
then bring your body and soul to the sacrifice.

Bow before the altar,
turn not your eyes toward any other. 
Make outcasts of those who would be scientists 
with data or ideas deemed unholy by your master.
Mingle not with heretics
no matter how learned.
Spit on them, damn them, gag them
in deference to the one true deliverer of science.
Shun the neighbor who questions.

Open your throat and
extend your arm for the sacraments.
Place your children on the pyre of the appointed science, too.
Empty their minds and yours of other notions.
The proclaimed science does not query, 
nay, it commands the natural world.
Question not.
The homeless, the unemployed, the lonely, the struggling, the ostracized, the injured, the ill, the once-free —
see how the saving arms of the only true science make it all so deserved.
Believe and be grateful.

accountability

Of course there’s next to no press coverage of it, but a United States court of law yesterday found that the National Security Agency acted illegally in its mass surveillance of US citizens’ telephone data and lying about it. As reported by Reuters, the US Court of Appeals for the Ninth Circuit declared it may have been unconstitutional as well.

The government’s assertion that the warrantless surveillance program of its own citizens served to fight domestic extremism also fell flat in the courtroom as the court ruled that the records did not support such claims.

This is a WIN for the American people. This is a WIN for the American Civil Liberties Union that helped bring the suit. It is also a WIN for courageous whistleblower Edward Snowden who disclosed the crime in 2013, and who remains in exile under threat of the US government’s use of the Espionage Act against him for said truth-telling.

It is wonderful to see a victory in the category of what’s right, but, somehow, and sadly, I do not think that this will reassure Snowden that it might be safe to come home to the country for which he so bravely stood up at such great personal cost.

It’s way past time that we recognize folks like Edward Snowden, Chelsea Manning, and Julian Assange as the heroes they are. It is despicable that the powers that be continue to malign them, hunt them down, imprison them, torture them, and more using the empowerment and funding of the people these heroes sought to protect. It is way past time that we demand that those entities serve their people legally and constitutionally, with transparency and accountability.

As usual, folks, the responsibility is ours to raise our voices and seek what’s right.

descent into depravity

Yesterday, the United States almost had its first federal execution since 2003. The scheduled execution was halted by a last minute ruling that questioned whether the intended pentobarbital method constituted cruel and unusual punishment.

Late yesterday, the Supreme Court expedited things in a whirlwind, handing over a 5-4 decision at 2 a.m. allowing the execution to proceed. The dissenting justices question the constitutionality of capital punishment.

Why, after all these years, and in the midst of a ‘pandemic’ where everyone breathlessly watches daily death counts in manifest fear, is the federal government aggressively pursuing the death penalty? 

It solves nothing in any given case. It can only be designed as a demonstration of the absolute and brutal power the government is prepared to wield against its own citizenry, and serves to engender a climate of fear — as if we don’t have enough of that going around. This, while giving societal ills the brush-off.

There is no man or woman who can properly sit in judgment with the power to dole out death. Aside from the fundamental moral void of such a presumption, we have seen far too many instances in which “justice” has been delivered to the wrong person. It is a revolting hubris that presumes the power to deliver death in judgment. It is depraved. It is all the more barbaric in the hands of a government so assiduously courting the disaffection of the people on so many fronts.

Last night’s ruling paves the way for four executions in the near term death queue, with more on the calendar later this year. Given that there have been three federal executions carried out since 1963, this is a disturbingly enthusiastic leap back into this sickening protocol. According to the Bureau of Prisons, a total of 37 federal executions took place since 1927 — that’s a span of almost 100 years. The administration plans to make up for lost time, apparently.

No. Stop. It is time to absolutely abolish the death penalty, both at the federal and state level. It is time to halt our descent into further depravity.