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Edward Snowden's warning: Surveillance measures will outlast the pandemic

Edward Snowden
Edward Snowden has a warning for those who are giving up liberty for a false sense of security: the temporary mass surveillance measures put in place will be anything but temporary. Snowden says that these measures are not worth giving up even more liberty.

Nothing is so permanent as a temporary government program, and infamous whistleblower Edward Snowden is sounding the alarms about the Orwellian mass surveillance that will long outlast this coronavirus pandemic.

The former CIA contractor, whose leaks exposed the scale of spying programs in the United States, is warning that once this tech is taken out of the box, it will be hard to put it back. "When we see emergency measures passed, particularly today, they tend to be sticky," Snowden said in an interview with the Copenhagen International Documentary Film Festival.

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Health

The numbers just don't add up: Nearly 500,000 went to hospital in 2018-19 flu season but today there are not enough hospital beds for coronavirus patients?

hospital beds
Really, What is going on? The data just don't add up.

The MSM and Democrats claim there are not enough hospital beds for the current 85,000 people identified with the coronavirus, many of whom will never even enter a hospital due to their relatively minor condition. Also, in 2018-19 there were plenty of beds for the nearly 500,000 patients that spent time in hospitals, due to the flu.

Via the CDC - there were 490,000 hospitalizations during the 2018-2019 flu season.

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Megaphone

The propaganda of terror and fear: A lesson from recent history

Bush patriot act

President George W. Bush signs the PATRIOT Act into law, October 26th 2001
The ongoing and unfolding reactions to the Corona Virus look set to have wide-ranging and long-lasting effect on politics, society and economics. The drive to close down all activities is extraordinary as are the measures being promoted to isolate people from each other.

The deep-rooted fear of contagious disease, hardwired into the collective consciousness by historical events such as the 'Black/Bubonic Plague' and maintained through popular culture (e.g. the Hollywood movies Outbreak and Contagion), means that people are without question highly susceptible to accepting extreme emergency measures whether or not such measures are rational or justified. The New York Times called for America to be put on a war footing in order to deal with Corona whilst former Army General Stanley McChrystal has been invoking his 9/11 experience in order to prescribe lessons for today's leaders.

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Blackbox

Mainstream media starting to ask questions - Laura Ingraham reports on faulty WHO coronavirus mortality rates

laura ingraham
On Friday night Laura Ingraham was the first mainstream reporter to question the WHO's suggested mortality rate of the coronavirus of 3.4%.

There are two main organizations behind the global coronavirus panic.

** The first was World Health Organization's Director General, Tedros Adhanom Ghebreyesus, who claimed in a press conference in early March that the fatality rate for the coronavirus was many multiples that of the fatality rate of the common flu. Ghebreyesus claimed the coronavirus had a 3.4% mortality rate and incorrectly compared this inaccurate number to the annual estimated flu mortality rate of 0.1%.

** And the second organization was the Imperial College study from London that claimed half a million Brits would die in the pandemic and 2 million Americans would perish from COVID-19.

They were both wrong.

Comment: See also: Coulter: How do we flatten the curve on panic?


Chalkboard

Renowned German mathematician and professor of statistics slams dramatization of Covid-19

Gerd Bosbach

Gerd Bosbach, is a mathematician and an Emeritus Professor of Statistics whose main field of interest and research is statistics on demographics and health care. He is renowned enough in his country that he has a giant German Wikipedia page
The media reports daily the new «number of infected», while everyone involved actually knows that they are far too low.

The next part of the sentence then deals with "death rates", while everyone involved knows that they are far too high.

There is a confusion of terms, and politicians have to make decisions based on highly uncertain assumptions, with serious effects for society. Jens Berger spoke with professor in statistics Gerd Bosbach about definitions, numbers and the lessons that we have not drawn from past crises and hopefully will draw from this crisis in the future.

Jens Berger: Last Friday, the German Society for Epidemiology warned that in one hundred days we will have more than a million patients in Germany who will need intensive care. A horror scenario that was immediately picked up by many media, but was clearly put into proper perspective by the epidemiologists a few hours later. This forecast was made on the basis of assumptions that, let's say politely, are not really scientifically reliable. Can you explain to our readers how such reports come about?

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Padlock

Two hundred and thirty years of rights and liberties shredded: Why I oppose the lockdown

coronavirus freedom
© Anthony Freda Art
Although it was nearly twenty years ago, I can remember 9/11 like it was yesterday. I remember the shock of hearing about the planes crashing into towers, at first believing it was a tragic accident and quickly learning it to be otherwise. I remember being told that 19 hijackers, part of a fundamentalist plot to destroy America, were behind the attacks and that the mastermind was a man in a cave in Afghanistan named Osama bin Laden.

As all of America was glued to their television screens, many rushed out to give blood in an effort to at least do something to help one another. George W. Bush's answer for Americans was to go to work and then go out and shop. Americans dutifully complied. But the government's answer, in tandem with mainstream media, was also to be afraid. Very afraid. Americans also complied with this request, perhaps more than any other.

In the days and weeks after the initial shock, a college professor informed me about a bill called the PATRIOT ACT that would essentially eviscerate much of the Constitution and Bill of Rights. After class, I questioned him further about the bill, which he explained, and suggested that if I really wanted to understand what was happening, I should read 1984 by George Orwell. I went home and did just that and was surprised to learn that not only was he right, but that I was watching what I was reading happen in front of me in real life.

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Cow Skull

WTC 7 NOT destroyed by fire on 9/11, concludes final University of Alaska Fairbanks report, formal "request for correction" will be made of Gov't

Building 7 wtc
The destruction of the 47-story World Trade Center Building 7 in New York City late in the afternoon of September 11, 2001, was not a result of fires, according to the much-anticipated final report issued today by researchers at the University of Alaska Fairbanks.

The UAF team's findings, which were the result of a four-year computer modeling study of the tower's collapse, contradict those of the National Institute of Standards and Technology (NIST), which concluded in a 2008 report that WTC 7 was the first tall building ever to collapse primarily due to fire.

"Our study found that the fires in WTC 7 could not have caused the observed collapse," said Professor Leroy Hulsey, the study's principal investigator. "The only way it could have fallen in the observed manner is by the near-simultaneous failure of every column."

The four-year study was funded by Architects & Engineers for 9/11 Truth (AE911Truth), a nonprofit organization representing more than 3,000 architects and engineers who have signed the organization's petition calling for a new investigation into the destruction of the three World Trade Center towers on 9/11.

Red Flag

'No new patients until release': WATCH staff protest KIDNAPPING of Haiti hospital chief as Covid-19 takes root in country

protective mask
© Reuters / Andres Martinez Casares
The chief surgeon and director at one of Haiti's major hospitals was kidnapped on his way into work, triggering protests from the facility's staff, who have refused to take any new patients until the doctor is freed.

The surgeon, Dr. Jerry Bitar, was abducted soon after leaving his home for the Bernard Mevs hospital in Haiti's capital of Port-au-Prince on Friday, an administrator at the facility told Reuters. Crowds gathered outside the hospital to demand for Bitar's release, chanting slogans and declining treatment for any new arrivals.

"Hospital staff decided not to take any new cases for the time being," said the administrator, Carla Puzo, adding "We will continue to look after those already here."

Hearts

Not all Americans are fighting over toilet paper: Here are some good deeds people have done that remind us of our better instincts

good deeds
During difficult times, you'll notice an emergence of conscience and courage in a lot of people. You might see people being willing to help others even when they are at risk themselves, acting courageously in conscience.

The coronavirus pandemic is no different. While you might see more coverage in the mainstream media about people fighting over toilet paper, here are 5 recent instances of kindness coming into play during the outbreak.

1. NJ Resident does grocery runs

Going from store to store collecting groceries for people in need, Bloomfield, New Jersey resident Abraham Dickerson is doing his part.

"Why did I start? Because I care," the good Samaritan said. "I didn't want to see anyone go hungry or possibly risk their life going to get food."

Dickerson's gesture means a lot to the people he is assisting.

An elderly woman named Barbara Brooks explained how Abraham helped her get groceries. Her residence is a tower where seniors live, and she has to deal with asthma. She was advised to be distant from others as much as possible.

"It means that someone cares," she said. "I'm almost out of breath."

Chalkboard

Public Hysteria Vs. Scientific Thinking

Corona
The Corona crisis has exposed our political and media establishments as dysfunctional and possibly dangerous. If the West was, until recently, associated with scientific, analytical, rational and methodical thinking, then not much is left of that Athenian reasoning. Like houses of cards, most of our Western democracies have succumbed to populist decision making that is, by its nature, deeply unscientific.

When I enrolled in university 35 years ago, scepticism and critical thinking were regarded as precious Western values. This approach has been discarded: skeptics are reduced into public enemies. They are scorned by the media and often smeared by their professional colleagues.

No one, I guess, doubts that the world is facing a hazardous health crisis, yet so many questions regarding the nature of this crisis, its origin, the virus at its centre and possible solutions are brushed aside in a manner reminiscent of historical clerical witch hunts rather than treated with the kind of reasoning that should be ingrained in us by Western Liberal traditions.

Comment: Many of the names Mr. Atzmon mentions above from the OffGuardian article had been previously captured here on SOTT, with added comments:

12 Experts Question The Need For a Global Coronavirus Lockdown

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