The Governor of Death and the Facebook of Fakes
Aaaaaand we’re back with another edition of our weekly podcast. Welcome one and all and get ready for our little rundown of everything that’s happened in your world over the past week. We hope things have been good for you. All’s A-OK on our end, though we’re busier than ever. But that just means we have even more of the freshest and most interesting news to bring to you, so here we go!
We kicked off January 28 with Seraphim Hanisch’s opinion piece, “Greek Orthodox Clerics Sell Out Christ to Praise Pro-Death NY Governor.” Of course, the pro-death governor is Cuomo in NY, who signed that disgusting and evil bill allowing a baby to be slaughtered at any time, and if it’s “accidentally” born alive anyways, it can be killed anyway. Unfortunately, just two years ago, a group called the Archons of the Ecumenical Patriarchate, made up of people from the Greek Orthodox Church in America, gave this disgusting excuse for a man a human rights award just two years ago because he was helping them rebuild their church that was destroyed on 9/11. What that has to do with human rights, I don’t know. This is a sore spot on the Church’s record, and hopefully they will address it in some way.
Then there was the history piece, with the T-39 shootdown incident in 1964, the beginning of the notorious 1977 blizzard, and the Challenger disaster in 1986.
And it looks like the Illinois State Board of Education has some big plans—they’re asking for $19 billion, which is more than half the state’s total budget. There’s no way they’ll get that much, but I guess they’re looking for at least some kind of increase. Among the hopeful projects is a universal pre-school program.
And a new report, highly contested, claims that 50% of Facebook users are likely fakes or duplicates. I meeean, come on. That seems insane. 50%?! But the thing is, FB really has no accurate way of measuring this. So check out the piece to see what you think of the stat.
Imagine killing your neighbor and getting away with it for decades, and remaining friends with the rest of the family that whole time. That would be pretty crazy, but that’s what happened in Brooklyn, where Calvin Grant was finally arrested for a 1992 murder after DNA tests were finally done on a cotton swab. Good job Cold Cases!
Next up is another USA Really original video report on Venezuelan-Americans rejecting the US’s intervention in Latin America. You know we love to stick our nose where it doesn’t belong, but, well, not everyone appreciates that! Seems they don’t believe in our government’s so-called “democratic intentions.” Go figure.
And here’s a stupidly sad, or sadly stupid story: “Cop Charged with Killing Colleague in Game of Russian Roulette.” I mean, it’s exactly what it sounds like.
Apparently volcanoes were on a rampage last year, killing more people than in the previous 18 years. What the crap is up with that? They killed 10,733 people and affected 61 million people worldwide in 2018. Methinks y’all should not choose to live near a volcano!
Here’s a shocker: “Half of Americans do not think Mueller’s report will be fair and evenhanded, poll says.” Well, duh, because nothing that we’ve seen so far in any way suggests that it would be. 57% have just some or no confidence at all in the report. I guess we’ll see what happens when it finally hits.
And what’s the Achilles heel of today’s youth? They never knew a world without the internet, and they’re more psychologically vulnerable cause of it. Sounds intriguing to me… check out the piece, “iGen Generation: Scientists Have Discovered Achilles Heel of Today's Youth” for that whole story.
Aaaand, we’ve been following the New California State movement. Well, they’ve held their third constitutional convention, so check out the piece on that to see what happened there.
Big climate change corporations are training people to go on diets now too, cause our eating habits are destroying the earth, doncha know? Climate change is an exciting business opportunity! Check out the piece on this matter for the full scoop!
Then January 29 kicked off with an opinion piece from K. E. Benois entitled “The Press Crosses the Line.” Well, yah, don’t they do that all the time?! While journalists have never held a premium social status in terms of respect, the public have generally seen them as a net social good, and this view has been largely based on the idea that journalists keep those in power honest. In the United States, the exposure of President Richard Nixon by Woodward and Bernstein has held an almost mythical significance. Less than a month into 2019, and this edifice of modern society has imploded, and it’s all thanks to the Covington Catholic madness. Check out this piece for Benois’ full analysis.
Next up was our history piece for the day, with the publishing of the Raven in 1845, the Battle of Rennell Island in WW2 in 1943, and the Mantra-Rock dance event in San Fran in 1967. The Grateful Dead and Janis Joplin were there!
And here’s a headline to grab ya: “Feminism on Drugs: Suffragists, Benzodiazepines and Biopolitics.” Although you wouldn’t think feminism and drugs are connected, but in their history and theoretical and political approaches, they are closely entwined.
There was a second opinion piece this day, from Luis Lazaro Tijerina, entitled. “The Venezuelan Armed Forces Amid the Road to Civil War.” This piece pulls you in right away: “The maniacal and naïve Donald J. Trump, who has proclaimed himself a “stable genius,” is preparing, along with various quarters within his regime, to destroy the legitimate government of Venezuela, and then to proceed to decimate the government of Bolivia, as they have a strategic road-map to retake South America through whatever political and military coups they can create.” Check out the article to find out where that’s going to go!
Next up: “US Accuses Chinese Telecom Giant Huawei of Conspiracy, Money Laundering.” Apparently we’re saying they stole trade secrets and violated US sanctions against doing business with Iran. Apparently that doesn’t make us too happy!
“Can Being a Sex Worker Really Change Life for the Better?” Well, there’re certainly some women working in Nevada who think so, and this piece brings you their sad stories.
And could it be? “The Collapse of Facebook Is Closer Than We Expected.” Well, as for me, I’ll believe it when I see it, but apparently FB was disconnected for 45 minutes back in August, and all kinds of interesting things happened on the rest of the internet. And it’s also experiencing some market problems. Check out this piece for all the ins and outs.
And more on the Latin America front: “U.S. Imposes New Oil Sanctions on Venezuela to Ramp Up Pressure.” Under the Trump administration, aggressive rhetoric against the Venezuelan government has ratcheted up to a more extreme and threatening level, with officials talking of “military action” and condemning Venezuela, along with Cuba and Nicaragua, as part of a “troika of tyranny.” That is some nice alliteration though.
And if you haven’t had enough about Venezuela, then January 30 kicked off with the piece “Venezuela: CIA Coups in South American Nothing New!” by Jeffrey Silverman. The CIA and the US State Department are at it again, this time in America’s backyard, stoking discourse and violence. It is just a matter of time before there is just enough blood spilled to set the whole country, or perhaps the entire region, on fire. But we’ve seen the same MO all over the world, haven’t we? And check out this piece for all the details!
Next up was the history piece for the day, followed by the story of a Duke prof who got the axe after telling her Chinese students they should speak English all the time. On the one hand, there’s a bunch of crazy profs running around who are freaking out because Chinese students are daring to talk Chinese to one another—absurdity—but on the other hand, like, why is this prof getting fired for making a suggestion to them based on concerns she’s heard from others? Absurdity.
Next up: “China Can No Longer Drag the Global Economy Along.” The Chinese economy has been growing wildly in the past 30 years, growing by an average of 10% a year! But, can they keep it up? They bailed out the global economy in 2009, but what are the lasting consequences? Check out this piece to learn it all!
And apparently there’s some bad stuff going down with the flu in Nebraska! It was actually ranked number one in the country in mid-January, so that’s pretty wild. But the officials are trying to keep it hush hush. Why do you think that might be?
And hey, are you feeling good? A little too good, maybe? Do you need a downer? Well we’ve got just the thing for you! “America Is Killing Itself.” If we look closely, we will see that US civil culture, or rather its prototype based on the chimerical structure of American society legitimizes violence, primarily within the US itself. For example, legal interpretations of various "atrocities" appeared in the US in the late 18th and early 19th centuries, which justified the use of state-sanctioned torture. Yup, that’s a nice way to kick things off. Head on over to this piece to get the full sad tale.
And anyone could have seen this coming: “New Mexico Bill Would Force Colleges to Believe Accusers in Sexual Assault Proceedings.” Of course, cause things like the Kavanaugh hearing certainly taught us to always believe the accuser, right?! Why can’t we just follow the evidence like any normal case?
And our American military superiority is under threat. There used to be an unspoken rule in America: It was impossible to doubt the power and might of the army. The Espionage Act of 1917 (still in force) provides for 20 years in prison "for disseminating false information about the U.S. Armed Forces in order to thwart its operations, cause a riot, or prevent recruitment into the army." That’s in the past--Americans are now openly talking about how the country’s military potential has gone to hell.
Then there’s another piece on Venezuela and the Latin American dignity that’s at stake there, followed by a piece that asks “Who Forced Donald Trump to Abandon the Promised Changes?” Did he succumb to the ruling class, or what? Well, this piece illumines you on what’s going on and why.
Then January 31 kicked off with an opinion piece from Pradeep Banerjee: “Rome Traded Freedom for Autocracy. What Will America Decide?” Here’s an interesting truncated history on the Roman Empire to start things off: Rome was not built in a day. And while the might of the empire pinnacled, the gulf between the rich and the poor widened. When the empire started stretching its geographical boundaries, the rulers found it cheaper to build the cities, and its infrastructure using the slaves it had acquired by conquest. As cheap labor put Roman citizens out of work, unemployment increased. And with unemployment came hunger and other problems associated with it. Crime in society increased and so did poverty and ill health. So how does this tie in with America? Let Banerjee show you!
Next up, of course, was the history piece, followed by a piece on the Fed holding its rates steady, and another economic piece: “Cautions on world trade cycle statistics.” Given the ongoing change in the trade cycle, the world economy is also changing. But now we see a new turn. With global trade growth decelerating sharply after the global financial crisis of 2008-2009, the protectionism surge and the break in global production chains have intensified the challenges. There is a distinct possibility that a reversal in an already weak trade cycle could trigger an unexpectedly rapid deterioration in the global economy. Check out the piece to get more where that came from.
Then there’s another piece on the Fed: “How Will the US National Debt Benefit From Any Fed Policy?” followed by a piece on the threat of Chinese artificial intelligence! Not only is the development of their AI way ahead of ours, but it even threatens our democracy! Of course, people today think Russians on Facebook threaten our democracy, so who knows.
And we rounded out that day and the month of January with the piece: “Selling Fake Followers and Likes Can Land You in Trouble With the Law.” Fake followers and fake likes have flooded social media in the past few years, which made the New York Attorney General’s Office reach a first-of-its-kind settlement with a company that sold fake social media engagement in an effort to deceive consumers. So what’s the deal? You’ll have to read the piece to find out.
Then we got things rolling in February with an opinion piece from Manuel Miranda: “Univision Falls Apart While Telemundo Rises.” The USA has two grand old dames in the hispanic network TV market; Univision and Telemundo who both are based in Miami. The viewers that follow both platforms are of different social and economic groups, which provides a glimpse regarding the electoral results in Florida. So two television stations—what does this tell us about America on a broader scale? This piece will lay it out for you.
And more classic Trump—he’s calling talks with Democrats on the wall a waste of time haha. He even said he almost abandoned the idea of negotiations with Congress members over the construction of the wall on the US-Mexico border.
Then there was the history piece for the day, with the Marshalls-Gilberts raids in 1942, the execution of Nguyen Van Lem in 1968, and the passing of the Communications Decency Act in 1996.
Aaaand will China have a new nuclear bomb sometime soon? Apparently the US is worried about it. "The attack with the use of nuclear electromagnetic weapons is part of the military doctrines, plans and exercises of China, North Korea, Russia and Iran for a revolutionary new way of warfare. This new method is called the war of the sixth generation, contactless war, electronic war, total information war and cyber warfare," one report says.
Then we wrapped up the day with “Sovereignty Against Globalism: The Main 21st Century Dilemma.” What is globalization and how does it relate to sovereignty? Schematically, it looks like a combination of two phenomena. The first phenomenon is of geopolitical origin and is called "glocalization." It denotes erosion and destruction of states and sovereignties with the transfer of state powers and prerogatives upwards. The second phenomenon is related to the civilization factor, which is "fragmentation" -- identities fragmentation combined with the integration of economies.
Next up was the history piece for the weekend, with the signing of the Treaty of Guadalupe Hidalgo on February 2, 1848, the end of the Battle of Kwajalein on February 3, 1944, and the beginning of the Battle of Manila on February 3, 1945.
Aaaand, we wrap up this whole shebang by returning to Mueller: “The Last Argument from Mueller Is Nothing More Than Another Fake.” Special Counsel Robert Mueller’s so-called investigation of “Russian meddling” has hit a dry well yet again. Mueller is trying by any means possible to prevent the indicted Russian firm Concord Management from its right to a fair, open and public determination of its case, stating that simply trusting him, that everything is just peachy is absolutely sufficient. But, is it? This article takes that apart for you.
Well, ladies and gentlemen, we thank you for listening to the end! We hope you found something to interest you, and we hope you have a great week and enjoy the pieces we bring you over the coming week. Good night, one and all!