You Have Been Assimilated

I had to go to Charlottesville today, so I thought I’d check out the mask scene there in establishments that I haven’t been to since the Coronamadness set in.

My first stop was at the drycleaner’s. No masks necessary there! I wasn’t wearing one, and neither was the owner. Give him an A+.

Next stop: Food Lion.

I’m familiar some of the places where they won’t let you in the door without a mask, such as Whole Foods and the ABC store. I don’t bother trying to resist in either of those. But Food Lion is a downscale place, the most plebeian of the supermarket chains. The one out here in the boonies seems to be shrugging off the masks fairly well — the last time I was in it, about 50% of the customers weren’t wearing them.

Charlottesville, however, is Woke Central, and Nancy Pelosi’s message (or maybe Mitch McConnell’s) seems to have been effective there. The place was a hive buzzing with masked drones, both employees and customers.

When I pulled up in the parking lot I saw a woman entering the store without a mask. She looked quite a bit older than I am, but she evidently didn’t consider herself to be at risk. Or maybe she’s defiant, like me. Or maybe she doesn’t have a TV.

However, when I got inside the store, I saw that everyone else had a mask on. If it weren’t for the non-conformist elderly woman, I would have been the only maskless one there.

It was depressing.

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Based on some of the emails I’ve been getting, not everyone has the same opinion on the mask issue, even if they agree with me on most other things.

I understand the rationale behind the lockdowns; nobody wants to see elderly invalids dying horribly of the disease. But the best strategy would be to protect the nursing homes, rather than to dump COVID-infected people in them, the way New York Governor Andrew Cuomo did. Nursing homes in the USA became death-traps, thanks in part to clueless government policies such as his.

It just doesn’t make sense to quarantine everybody in their homes. It makes sense to take special care of those who are vulnerable to the coronavirus.

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The Shadow of the Torturers

When Matteo Salvini was Italian Minister of the Interior, Carola Rackete, the captain of the migrant-ferry vessel Sea-Watch 3, defied Mr. Salvini and the Italian government by ramming a patrol boat and forcing her way into the port at Lampedusa.

It later emerged that three of the “refugees” she carried to Italy were notorious torturers for the people-smuggling gang that arranged the trafficking of migrants across the Mediterranean. The three men have now been convicted in an Italian court and sentenced to lengthy prison terms.

As a matter of interest, the case has a Mohammed Coefficient of 66.7%

Many thanks to MissPiggy for translating this article from the Swiss weekly Die Weltwoche:

The Code of Silence Around Captain Rackete

One year ago the German rescue ship Sea-Watch 3, of all ships, brought three torturers from the human smuggling mafia from Libya to Italy. The embarrassing news is being systematically concealed.

June 3, 2020
by Alex Baur

Last week, on May 28, a court in Messina, Italy sentenced Mohamed Condé, 27, of Guinea, and two Egyptians, Hameda Ahmed, 26, and Mahmoud Ashuia, 24, to 20 years in prison, each for torture, rape and involvement in a criminal organisation. The three Africans were found guilty of systematically torturing migrants as members of a Libyan smuggling gang in order to extort money transfers.

The prosecutor Maurizio de Lucia explained that the verdict was decided on the basis of the documents provided and delivered with shortened court proceedings hidden from the public gaze. In return, the punishment for those accused (who did not confess) was reduced by one third.

Disclosure of the toxicity at the highest level

The three men were arrested in a refugee shelter in Messina, Italy last August. According to de Lucia, these torturers employed by the smugglers were identified by a dozen migrants who had made the crossing from Libya, including on the rescue ship Alex in July.

According to the Gazzetta del Sud, the Sicilian anti-mafia unit DDA had previously targeted the three. While the two Egyptians abused the victims in a camp in Zawiya controlled by the smugglers, Condé is said to have filmed the scenes. The clips were sent to relatives to reinforce the ransom demands. This brutal method is well-known, and is also used by people smugglers in Mexico.

As the well-known reporter Chiara Giannini reported back in September in the newspaper Il Giornale, citing police sources, the three torturers had arrived in Italy from Libya on June 29, 2019 on the German-Dutch rescue ship Sea-Watch 3. It was a revelation of the highest level of toxicity. At that time, Sea-Watch 3 made headlines worldwide when Captain Carola Rackete, with forty migrants on board, broke through a blockade imposed by Interior Minister Matteo Salvini and forced entry into the port of Lampedusa. Some celebrated Rackete as an icon of humanity, but others cursed her as a naïve stooge at best who was used by unscrupulous gangs of traffickers. Criminal investigations were opened against both the hardliner Salvini, who was toppled last September, and the revolutionary Rackete.

Giannini’s revelation was pure dynamite against this backdrop. Even more astonishing, this has been ignored almost uniformly by the established media, both in Italy and internationally. It may have to do with the fact that Il Giornale — the newspaper is owned by Paolo Berlusconi, the brother of the famous Silvio Berlusconi — is seen as right-wing. However, the report was never denied. The police, the prosecutor’s office, the government, and above all Sea-Watch have never denied it. A spokesman for the NGO mentioned once: “We cannot rule it out, but we do not have any reliable information. People come without passports.”

But this is exactly the problem: Nobody knows who these alleged refugees are who are collected off the Libyan coast. Even if one does not accuse Ms. Rackete and similar networks of deliberately bringing criminals to Europe, the nonchalance with which they accept this is astonishing. After all, the self-proclaimed sea rescuers play into the hands of the smugglers’ mafia by taking over the costly journey across the Mediterranean. The three torturers undoubtedly chose the least risky route for their transfer to Italy. The question therefore arises whether they had specifically chosen the Sea-Watch 3 for their transfer, because it was easiest to locate due to GPS tracking.

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Corona Hijab Update

I’ve been avoiding visiting major urban retailers as much as possible, due to the coronamadness that has infected cities and major towns. Here in the Virginia Outback things are more relaxed, and it’s close to business as usual. But in the cities you’re far more likely to encounter people and commercial establishments that regard the edicts of Governor Ralph “Coonman” Northam with utmost seriousness and observe the masking and social distancing rules with something approaching religious zeal.

Readers may recall that I’ve been doing archaeological excavations in this house since Dymphna died, rooting through forty years’ worth of accumulated stuff (more than fifty years if you count the boxes and trunks that came down here from my mother’s house unopened). I’m organizing, consolidating, and curating materials accumulated over several generations.

I needed some shelving materials to rationalize some of the storage space, and that required a trip into town today to shop at Lowe’s. I wondered whether they would be enforcing Coonman’s masking bull, but I went on into the store anyway without a mask. They had no signs about masks, and only about 80% of the people there wore them, which was a relief. The young assistant who helped me wore a mask, but he didn’t seem concerned that I wasn’t wearing one. So that part of my itinerary went well.

While I was in the great metropolis I went to CVS (large chain pharmacy). As expected, they had a sign on the door about masks, saying that they are “required by law”. Which is nonsense — they are required by a gubernatorial executive order, which is not at all the same thing. The legislature of the Commonwealth of Virginia was not consulted. This particular order exceeds the governor’s statutory authority, and is thus unconstitutional. Furthermore, it is currently being litigated in court by Rob Schilling, a Charlottesville talk show host, and a pawnshop owner, also in Charlottesville.

So I went on into the store, brazenly unmasked. I was the only one there who refused to comply — 100% of the staff and other customers wore masks.

I could feel the dread weight of social pressure on my shoulders as I walked around the store, sticking out like a sore thumb in my selfish indifference to the well-being of others. I could have relieved the feeling by rushing back to the car and grabbing my mask out of the glove compartment, but I toughed it out.

I can understand why people give in to relentless social pressure. To resist it takes a conscious act of will that must be maintained continuously during one’s sojourns in public spaces. It’s very difficult and unpleasant not to do what everyone else is doing. But as a matter of principle, I considered it important not to comply with something so obviously arbitrary and insane.

There is a collective hysteria abroad in the land. The non-rural part of the land, that is — it’s not so bad out here, and it was good to come home.

When I stopped at the mailbox on my way in, I stood and chatted with my neighbor for a while. Neither of us was wearing a mask.

Universal Masking in the Covid-19 Era

In one of last month’s fundraiser posts, as part of the discussion on face masks and the Wuhan Coronavirus, I quoted a paragraph from an article published in April by The New England Journal of Medicine:

We know that wearing a mask outside health care facilities offers little, if any, protection from infection. Public health authorities define a significant exposure to Covid-19 as face-to-face contact within 6 feet with a patient with symptomatic Covid-19 that is sustained for at least a few minutes (and some say more than 10 minutes or even 30 minutes). The chance of catching Covid-19 from a passing interaction in a public space is therefore minimal. In many cases, the desire for widespread masking is a reflexive reaction to anxiety over the pandemic.

I wasn’t the only right-wing extremist referencing this excerpt; it was bouncing around all over the place in the deplorable regions of the Intertubes.

Before I quote the latest from the NEJM, I must note that all the most contentious issues surrounding COVID-19 — face masks, the effectiveness (or danger) of hydroxychloroquine, “social distancing”, etc. — are political issues rather than medical issues. The scientific and medical aspects of these questions might be argued and debated, but since they are political issues, the science is settled, and brooks no debate.

The importance of any given topic and the extent to which it inflames the talking heads among media snoids depends upon Donald Trump’s position on it. If Mr. Trump supports it, the hue and cry against it blares at top volume day and night. If he opposes it, then earnest experts appear on every TV news or talk show to promote it. That’s just the way the game works.

Evidently the top brass at NEJM noticed the use to which their article had been put by right-wing pinheads, and felt compelled to do damage control by explaining the nuances of their policy on face masks.

Thus endeth my editorial opinion. Here’s the latest from the NEJM:

Universal Masking in the Covid-19 Era

We understand that some people are citing our Perspective article (published on April 1 at NEJM.org) as support for discrediting widespread masking. In truth, the intent of our article was to push for more masking, not less. It is apparent that many people with SARS-CoV-2 infection are asymptomatic or presymptomatic yet highly contagious and that these people account for a substantial fraction of all transmissions. Universal masking helps to prevent such people from spreading virus-laden secretions, whether they recognize that they are infected or not.

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Signs and Portents Everywhere… But of What? (Interlude 5)

Here’s another interlude post in Seneca III’s latest treatise. See the archives link at the bottom of this post for previous installments in this series.

Signs and Portents Everywhere… But of What?

by Seneca III

“War is the realm of uncertainty; three quarters of the factors on which action in war is based are wrapped in a fog of greater or lesser uncertainty. A sensitive and discriminating judgment is called for — a skilled intelligence to scent out the truth.” — Carl von Clausewitz

Interlude 5 — Whiteness rising and angry torrents raging through jagged rocks.

Prelude

Love and hate are the face and obverse of the same coin. For the last thirty odd years the white race has been subjected to the irrational hatred of the black and brown races — irrational because they subliminally understand that their failures, inadequacies and sheer primitivism have prevented them from creating stable, civilized cultures of their own despite the trillions on trillions of dollars, pounds, francs, deutschmarks and now euros pumped into their failed homelands and into their murderous self-made ghettos throughout the Western Ecumene, and thus they spurn the gratitude they should express, and turn to violent mayhem.

This should come of no surprise to seasoned observers of barbarian cultures. Essentially, after decades of our trying to help them in recompense for some of our ancestors’ actions hundreds of years ago, they are now openly spitting in our faces and physically attacking us with increasing ferocity in the expectation that we will be consumed by guilt and contrition and that consequently we will do nothing and meekly take it on the chin.

Well, they are wrong, and now they must face our hatred as we flip the coin over; the Law of Unintended Consequences has kicked in and is evolving into a force to be reckoned with — the BLM and Antifa thugs and other congenital liars and chancers of various persuasions are about to get their comeuppance. We understand now that this is a survival fight and we must treat it as such.

Report
1500-1930hrs 06/06/2020

Winston Churchill’s statue has been vandalized on the 76th Anniversary of D-Day (and so has Abraham Lincoln’s).

This not the first time Britain has come under attack and nor will be the last, but it will help us to deal with it if we absorb and remember these words:

“This is only the beginning of the reckoning. This is only the first sip, the first foretaste of a bitter cup which will be proffered to us year by year unless by a supreme recovery of moral health and martial vigour, we arise again and take our stand for freedom as in the olden time.” ― Winston S. Churchill

Thus, the barbarism continues; a mob in the vicinity of Downing Street have just thrown a bicycle — probably stolen, of course — and fired red flares at a police horse, causing it to bolt and unseat the rider.

She is sprawled on the ground, face up, unmoving, and she doesn’t look good at all.

Meanwhile, in Whitehall, the Cenotaph is being desecrated despite the fact that it is hallowed ground and, amongst many others, remembers and acknowledges the thousands of black and brown soldiers, sailors and airmen from what is now the Commonwealth who gave their lives in two World Wars. Statues and memorials can be cleaned or repaired as needs be whilst the memory of this evil day will remain…

…and burnt flags will be replaced.

This, I suspect, this is what the cousins across the pond mean by the phrase ‘A Chimpout’.

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Les Invulnérables

The migrant-loving French official who was identified here as a mayor is actually a member of parliament. Oz-Rita has translated an article with all the context for the event, and includes this prefatory note:

From the article we can see the name of the man — whom I mistook for a mayor — who brown-nosed the illegals. He is: the greenie (formerly belonging to the party of Macron) MP François-Michel Lambert. In France, for the civilised French, the Corona restrictions are far more draconian than, for example, here in Oz. There is an obligation to wear a mask, and an interdiction on all assemblies of more than ten (at least at the time of that demonstration).

The translated article from Boulevard Voltaire:

Thousands of illegals defy Covid-19 and France in Paris

At the call of 195 associations (no less, but no doubt most of them would fit into a single clip), thousands of undocumented migrants, mostly Africans, defied French law by parading through the streets of the capital, from the Opera House to the Place de la République. In order that they might, from illegal undocumented migrants, become legal migrants in their own right. There were 5,500 of them, according to the police.

For them, huddled together, it was a real call to insurrection, defying barrier gestures, of course, and the police prefect’s ban on demonstrations, since they did not respect the decree forbidding gatherings of more than ten people. These illegals who are asking to be welcomed in France have a very particular concept of what France has become for them: a lawless money machine!

We even saw and heard, at the Place de la République, where hundreds of Africans had taken over the statue, the ecologist deputy François-Michel Lambert, wearing his tricolour scarf, haranguing the crowd to demand the regularisation of all these men who had arrived on our soil without the slightest visa. The slogans? “Freedom for all the locked-up”, “Papers for all”… or even “Police assassins”, as we can hear very clearly in this video [see link] relayed by Eric Ciotti.

The police made only a timid appearance, throwing a few tear gas grenades and arresting 90 demonstrators, so the banned demonstration was able to go on until the end. Astonished and outraged, many politicians and public figures expressed their anger forcefully on Twitter.

Thierry Mariani: “A distressing parade of illegal immigrants on our soil.” Jean-Yves Le Gallou: “600 cops to prevent a demonstration by the Identitaires, there just a chopper from the gendarmerie.” Damien Rieu: “France, this magical country where thousands of illegal immigrants can parade in total impunity, when the police should cordon off the street and arrest them all and deport them immediately.”

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Maskless in Walmart

I went on an outing this afternoon to Kroger and Walmart in Appomattox. I had been dreading the trip, because it was my first venture into the larger Coronaworld since Governor Ralph “Coonman” Northam issued his ukase making the wearing of masks mandatory in public places. Like all the other li’l Stalins, the rules don’t apply to Coonman, as he made plain in a now-infamous selfie taken with one of his fans in Virginia Beach a couple of weeks ago:

How’s that for social distance, eh?

Anyway, I needn’t have worried: masking was not being enforced at Kroger and Walmart. The Corona Hijab was much in evidence, however: About 85% of people I saw were masked. Nevertheless, the atmosphere was very relaxed, much more so than it was back in April, when fewer masks were to be seen. None of the mask-wearing people appeared to care whether anyone else was wearing a mask.

The mask seemed to be a signal of compliance with the new social norms, rather than the action of the fearful. It’s as if people were saying, “OK, I’ve done my duty and put my mask on. Now I can go shopping and behave normally.”

Social distancing was not well observed, as demonstrated by a little vignette in the produce section of Kroger. A young housewife wearing a mask was picking through the onions while I waited patiently at the prescribed social distance so that I could pick through the potatoes. A man, also masked, came up from behind and lightly bumped into the woman. She turned around, and exclaimed with pleasure: evidently they knew one another. They chatted for a couple of minutes, standing at the usual distance two good friends would use, maybe two feet (60 cm) apart. Then, when they said goodbye, the young lady playfully punched her friend on the shoulder.

All while masked. It’s a good thing no COVID patrols were nearby, or the two would surely have been cited for their heartless indifference to the health of others. And I also would have been cited, of course, for not wearing a mask — obviously, I wanted everyone around me to die.

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Out With Them!

In a follow-up to last night’s video of a migrant-loving French politician, Oz-Rita sends her translation of this brief editorial from Riposte Laïque:

In Paris, thousands of illegal immigrants are defying France: out with them!

by Pierre Cassen, founder of Riposte Laïque
May 31, 2020

All the rot of this regime was made apparent this past Saturday, May 30, in the streets of Paris. 5,500 illegal Africans, with total impunity, despite the prohibition of a demonstration, supported by 195 parties, associations, unions of the Left, were able to demonstrate without the slightest problem from the Opera House to the Place de la République.

The French had a new confirmation that this regime only repressed the Gauls, and left total freedom to the inhabitants of the Islamic districts and the African invaders.

This government of criminals confirms, in the eyes of all, its contempt for the French and its preference for foreigners, at a time when our country is ruined, and when Macron evokes, for the first time, a European tax to pay for the crisis… and immigration.

With true patriotic leaders, the only possible response to this kind of situation can be summed up in one word: get out!

Fundraising in the Time of Corona

This was the “sticky” post for the spring fundraiser. It was first published on May 25, and was on top throughout fundraising week. Scroll down for items posted on and after that date.

Spring Fundraiser 2020, Day Seven

Sunday’s Update: A Diversity Flashback

We’re moving into the final day of what has been a very unusual fundraising week.

Tip jarThere was no way to tell in advance how this quarter’s fundraiser might turn out, given the economic devastation that is enshrouding most of the Western world. Would anybody have spare cash to donate to a minor website?

Would anyone even be paying attention?

Well… Up until now there have been a greater than average number of donations — which is astonishing. Yet the total amount that has come in is somewhat less than average, which isn’t surprising at all, since most people have been hit hard financially for the past two months or so. It’s gratifying that so many have been willing to chip in, under the circumstances.

If you haven’t got around to it yet, the tip jar is on the sidebar, or you can use this link.

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Instead of another COVID-related update, I’ll close this fundraiser with a blast from the past. The excerpt below was written by Dymphna almost exactly eight years ago, on June 4, 2012, for the final fundraising post of that year’s spring fundraiser.

The theme for that week’s bleg was “Diversity”, and she wrapped everything up with the following remarks:

The subject of Diversity is fraught. So for this Fundraiser, I’ve deliberately kept the lid on certain subjects. They can accumulate like barnacles or smart bombs on the wall of diversity, or rather on the battlements of modern, top-down “Diversity”. As is true of any other project, some stuff has to be routinely scraped off so you can see what’s underneath, yet other junk — whilst appearing to be identical — will blow up in your face. Frankly, the explosions aren’t interesting anymore.

It is the former which draws my curiosity. .The latter, full of traps like the origins or even the existence of “global” “warming” — oops, climate change…oops, methane in the atmosphere. Whatever. Any point in “discussing” those issues is long past. Those in Charge will tell you ahead of time: “It’s settled…” “Consensus Has Been Reached”… “Everyone Knows”… “Only an Idiot Would Think Such a Thing”….and so on, ad infinitum, ad nauseam.

Have you noticed that the more fervently views on such issues are clung to (bitterly), the less room there is for Reason or even the possibility of entertaining alternate ideas? Entertaining ideas? Enter that realm at your own risk.

Here’s a partial list of Don’t-Go-There-Unless-You-Want-a-Fight hot buttons. No particular order here, simply a reflection of what I’ve been reading and thinking about. These are only contentions; I have no solutions. The mysteries of life usually don’t come with quick remedies:

  • Abortion. Or not. When does life begin to have value? No, it’s not “settled”. Look up the numbers of those who believe religiously in #1 vs. those who think the prize is behind Door #2. Just don’t put these folks in the same room.
  • Gender. What could be simpler: This is a girl; see that little cleft where her penis should be? This is a boy, see his penis hanging there? Gender-bending is occurring at younger and younger ages, much to the horrified sorrow of parents caught in a five year-old’s intense identity crisis. It may well be that the crisis is real enough, but it could turn out to be just one manifestation of a larger, more complex reality than the one we can see. Human beings are quite malleable, but they are also fragile. The times in which we live, where sexual identity is up for grabs — literally — are reflected in many issues, and one of them is seen in these canary children. In different times most of them would’ve been spared this assault from the zeitgeist, an assault which begins during the dark floaty existence in utero. Were there no assaults from the residues of psychotropic drugs left in the drinking water (just to name one possible influence), or the constant low-level cultural exposure to increasingly depraved pornography, these children could have lived within the boundaries of their respective anatomy without a blip. When times simplify again — and they surely will — outlier cases will recede again. That’s not much comfort now to these kids or their parents as they stumble through the nightmare.
  • Religion is a crutch vs. Spirituality is a part of human experience. The former has become the more intellectually acceptable attitude of late, though one wonders what insecurity keeps the more aggressively devout unbelievers at their megaphones, proselytizing like hard-shell Mississippi Baptists. You begin to ask if there is some fervent need on their part to save the unwashed from arrant foolishness. Perhaps a good dose of American history about the cycles of the Great Awakenings in the 18th and 19th centuries would at least help the ardent atheists this side of the Atlantic to gain some perspective.

    My guess regarding the foundation of this popular orthodoxy among the media gatekeepers? It’s high school redux: they want to be with the cool kids and they don’t want to have to actually study anything. Aping your betters is so much easier, especially if your “educated” betters are being all edgy and you know it will irritate those boring duds in Flyover Country… As is the case for other media belief blankets, if you want to hear another side (and there is more than one) you’ll have to hunt for it on your own. What surprises me is the number of people who do — want to hear another point of view, I mean.

  • Sex among adults. Interestingly, as the results from the Boomer generation become apparent, and the laws of unintended consequences begin to take their toll, their children are turning away from their parents’ youthful decisions to let it all hang out. They see the results and politely decline. Or at least the ones who catch on early enough do so. They know the health risks for both sexes of too many sexual partners. They understand the complexities of bonding better than their naïve parents did. Except for the one percent — those befuddled “Occupy” useful tools — for the most part middle-class kids have turned back the clock. Of course many of them face rigors their parents did not: huge education debt, a poor job market, and increasing balkanization by class. Their lives will be tougher in many ways, but then so will they. At least the ones who aren’t forced to move back home, much the same way their great grandparents had to do to get by.
  • Sex with children as the new norm. Nope, that’s not worth our time. The downward deviancy of our culture was seen two generations ago and I’m sure it’s not hit bottom yet. But it will. In the meantime, let’s not contribute to the pollution.
  • Death. Like the beginnings of life, its endings are becoming more fungible. The Right to Die vs. the Responsibility to Die. Our old are becoming the Ice Floe Generation. And who gets to decide whose life has meaning or value? Recently, a couple sued for Wrongful Birth when their child was born with congenital anomalies the parents believed they should have been told about ahead of time. Among the nettles were questions like financial responsibility for this life no one wants. This question lies floundering side-by-side with the reality of aborted, breathing fetuses who are killed on the operating table without a qualm. Are we confused or what?
  • Trash. There are lots more thorns and contention here, but let’s end with garbage, with refuse, with detritus. Like global warming, there are folks on both sides of the Religion of Recycling, which is a smaller denomination of the colossal Environmental Cathedral — and that place makes Vatican City look like a high-rise tenement. Again, this subject has sectarian overtones in the higher reaches (or screeches) of the True Believers. For the dissidents there is often no choice: just because you can ‘prove’ your locality saves nothing by recycling doesn’t mean you can opt out. There are handy garbage technologies in your wheelie bin that will see you fined or put in jail if you don’t conform.

    One of the dystopian uncharms of living in an urban landscape is unending trash. But city-slicker trash has become another source of revenue for cash-poor rural areas. While the downside is that the nearby urban poor often find it cheaper to skulk out here to the country and leave their bags of unidentifiable refuse because they can’t afford the trash stickers the city makes them buy, there’s an upside to this. Big cities up North will pay good money to poor rural areas if they’ll take the garbage out. Thus many county boards of supervisors do just that, and this venture keeps the real estate tax rate down for the bumpkins.

    Don’t you wonder where this will lead as consumers are unable to continue consuming? Will trash reduce itself to an endangered species? In order to continue the justification of its existence, will the EPA have to step in with emergency rulings?

Diverse contentions. They’re endless and they get more polarized all the time. As resources get thin on the ground, look for the rigidities to worsen. I don’t know about you, but I’m sick of living in interesting times. I’m ready for a good long spell of boredom — kind of like those endless amber waves of grain we don’t have anymore because they hybridized all the wheat. Modern varieties are now too short to wave at anyone.

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The photo below was taken in the late 1990s. It shows Dymphna on her 58th birthday:

It’s probably the last image of her that I’ll scan and post, unless I happen upon another trove of lost photos. She gave her permission for me to post just one, the photo of her holding a puppy that I included with my eulogy for her last June.

However, I figure that her attitude about such things is probably more relaxed now that she is incorporeal. The photos of her that I’ve posted here over the past twelve months are excellent ones, in my opinion. She is exactly herself in them, and I cherish them more than words can say. I think she’s OK with my including them here.

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Saturday’s gifts came in from:

Stateside: California, Illinois, Minnesota, Nebraska, New Mexico, and Texas

Far Abroad: Australia and the UK

Canada: Ontario

I’ll be back in a few days to post a wrap-up with the final tally of locations.

The next fundraiser will begin sometime in the hot, hot summer. Who knows what the coronacrisis will have morphed into by then?

Many thanks to everyone for their generosity.

Saturday’s Update: Who is That Masked Man?

We’re moving into the penultimate day of Gates of Vienna’s quarterly fundraiser.

Readers who are sheltering in place at home and have nothing better to do are invited to send a modest donation by way of the tip cup on the sidebar (or by using this link).

Those small individual gifts are the way I keep this blog going. If a significant number of readers give a little bit each, it adds up to enough to pay for the site and keep me in cheese and crackers for another quarter.

Full disclosure: This website is not corona-compliant. Its proprietor is a coronadissident who refuses to wear a mask.

Since yesterday morning’s update I became aware of an article published by the The New England Journal of Medicinethat bolsters my dissident stance. It concerns the ineffectiveness of wearing a mask as a means of preventing the spread of COVID-19. One of our commenters mentioned it, but I also ran across it on Twitter.

This was actually published in April, but for some reason is only now drawing attention:

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Orange Vests Protest Coronavirus Restrictions in Milan

A group called the Orange Vests staged a demonstration in the Italian city of Milan to protest the government’s handling of the coronavirus crisis.

Many thanks to FouseSquawk for translating this news report, and to Vlad Tepes for the subtitling.

The translator notes that after the demonstration police were able to identify a number of the participants, who were then issued with citations for violating social distancing rules.

Video transcript:

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“An Armed People Shall Never Be Enslaved”

José Atento has written in the past about the remarkable similarity of the sabotage of Donald Trump and that of Jair Bolsonaro by the establishments in their respective countries. The Brazilian chapter of the Deep State is attempting to weaponize the coronavirus scam against President Bolsonaro. Sound familiar?

Note: The video included in the essay below was not subtitled by us, so be aware that there is a lot of vulgar language in the subtitles.

“An armed people shall never be enslaved”

by José Atento

Last time, I reported how the Brazilian Establishment was doing everything possible to overthrow Brazil’s president Jair Bolsonaro. At that time I mentioned the incident created by the early departure of Justice Minister Sergio Moro. Moro became a Brazilian national hero as the judge who led Operation Car Wash that put jailed powerful politicians and entrepreneurs, including former president Lula. Bolsonaro invited him to be his justice minster because Moro represented one of his causes: the fight against corruption.

Some pointed out that even though he was aligned with the fight against corruption, Moro was against some of Bolsonaro’s other positions. Contrary to Bolsonaro, Moro was in favor of abortion and in favor of disarming the population.

Let us jump to the present and the COVID-19 crisis. The Supreme Court, mostly composed of judges appointed during the 16 years of socialist rule, decided that the guidance, administration and control of how to tackle the pandemic was the responsibility of the state governors. One may argue that was correct, since public health is prerogative of states and municipalities, but, in practice, that made the federal government like the “Queen of England” whose only duty was to print money. Nonetheless, Bolsonaro made his opinion heard loud and clear, that, based on the Brazilian reality, where most of the population eat based on the money they make every day, the best approach would be a vertical lockdown of those in higher-risk groups (the elderly and those with health conditions); otherwise, the social consequences of the lockdown would be huge.

Some states, particularly those governed by the socialist Labour Party (PT) and the state of Rio de Janeiro and São Paulo, whose governors are pre-candidates for the 2022 presidential election, opted to force a full lockdown upon the population, calling it “social distancing.” Here comes the newspeak: everything was closed, and everyone told to stay at home, but it was not a lockdown. God knows what a lockdown would mean to them. At the same time, they began to bombard Bolsonaro with all sort of accusations, such as that he was anti-science, and the mainstream Brazilian media (that includes the newly created CNN-Brazil) blamed Bolsonaro for everything, even though his power had been removed by the Supreme Court.

Probably, the most outrageous of all was the way state and municipal police forces began to treat citizens who allegedly “disrespected social distancing” even if they were alone in an empty space. The brutality of a police-state became visible in videos that flooded social media (but not mainstream media) where working men, the elderly and women, even in bikinis, were brutally handcuffed and arrested. Meanwhile, governors are releasing criminals from jail, even drug-trafficking leaders and unrepentant rapists.

During this time of crisis, Justice Minister Moro resigned, claiming Bolsonaro was trying to interfere with the work of the Federal Police, even attempting to change some of its directors. Vague as this accusation was, as it is a constitutional prerogative of the president to appoint people to senior positions, the Establishment began to ask for Bolsonaro’s impeachment. Moro claimed that the content discussed during the last ministerial meeting would prove that. the Supreme Court opened an investigation based on Moro’s accusation, and requested the tape of the meeting.

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Serve the Fatherland by Snitching on Your Neighbor!

The Italian government is adopting an initiative to recruit volunteers from among unemployment recipients and welfare beneficiaries. The job of the recruits will be to help the government enforce its social distancing policies — that is, they will be expected to snitch on people who get too close to each other.

So it’s sort of like the CCC, corona-style.

Below are two videos on the topic. Many thanks to FouseSquawk for the translations, and to Vlad Tepes for the subtitling.

The first video may be a news report; its provenance is unclear. However, by the way it’s put together, it might just as well be an official promotion produced by the Italian government:

The second video shows the response of opposition leader Matteo Salvini, the head of the Lega party:

Video transcript #1:

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Fill Out the Form, or We’ll Take Away Your Kids!

The latest totalitarian escalation in the German coronavirus crisis is a threat by the authorities to take away people’s children if they don’t fill out a form properly and have their child take it to school every day.

Many thanks to MissPiggy for the translation, and to Vlad Tepes for the subtitling:

Video transcript:

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The Corona Lockdown is an Abuse of Power

Hans-Christoph Berndt is a politician for the AfD (Alternative für Deutschland, Alternative for Germany) and a member the Brandenburg Landtag, or regional parliament. In the following video Mr. Berndt discusses the German government’s coronavirus lockdown policy, describing it as an abuse of power.

Many thanks to MissPiggy for the translation, and to Vlad Tepes for the subtitling:

Video transcript:

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