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Sun, 07 Jun 2020
The World for People who Think

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Wikipedia co-founder Larry Sanger says online encyclopedia scrapped neutrality, favors lefty politics

Wikipedia co-founder Larry Sanger
© Getty Images
Wikipedia co-founder Larry Sanger wrote that the site is now “badly biased."
Wikipedia co-founder Larry Sanger penned a blog post last week declaring that the site is "badly biased," "no longer has an effective neutrality policy" and clearly favors lefty politics.

Sanger - who is no longer involved with Wikipedia - wrote that it has long forgotten its original policy of aiming to present information from a neutral point of view, and nowadays the crowd-sourced online encyclopedia "can be counted on" to cover politics with a liberal point of view.

"There is a rewritten policy, but it endorses the utterly bankrupt canard of journalistic 'false balance,' which is directly contradictory to the original neutrality policy. As a result, even as journalists turn to opinion and activism, Wikipedia now touts controversial points of view on politics, religion, and science," Sanger wrote. "Examples have become embarrassingly easy to find."

Comment: Good on Sanger for calling it out. But Wikipedia's bias goes well beyond partisan stances. The website has a materialist, 'official narrative' bent that invades articles across the expanse of the site. From climate change to vaccines to natural health - Wikipedia is nowhere near neutral almost across the board. Pretty much the only place you'll find neutrality on the site are on pages that are entirely without controversy.

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Arrow Down

The CDC confirms remarkably low coronavirus death rate. Where is the media?

CDC corprate sign logo
Most people are more likely to wind up six feet under because of almost anything else under the sun other than COVID-19.

The CDC just came out with a report that should be earth-shattering to the narrative of the political class, yet it will go into the thick pile of vital data and information about the virus that is not getting out to the public. For the first time, the CDC has attempted to offer a real estimate of the overall death rate for COVID-19, and under its most likely scenario, the number is 0.26%. Officials estimate a 0.4% fatality rate among those who are symptomatic and project a 35% rate of asymptomatic cases among those infected, which drops the overall infection fatality rate (IFR) to just 0.26% — almost exactly where Stanford researchers pegged it a month ago.

CDC covid-19 infections
© CDC/screenshot

Until now, we have been ridiculed for thinking the death rate was that low, as opposed to the 3.4% estimate of the World Health Organization, which helped drive the panic and the lockdowns. Now the CDC is agreeing to the lower rate in plain ink.

Comment: See also:


We shouldn't indulge this deluded two-metre social distancing rule any longer

social distancing
People adhere to social distancing as they queue to enter a shop in Manchester
Social distancing is an unsustainable fantasy. We must get real, making sure to balance the risks along with ensuring quality of life

Social distancing is a fantasy. There, I've said it, and now you've heard it, you can't unhear it. Let's stop pretending that this is going to work. It isn't. Let go of the comfort blanket because like it or not, every individual citizen is going to have make their own risk assessments, use their common sense and make their own decisions about how to live their lives. "Stay away from everyone" is a clear message but not credible. "Stay alert" will just have to do.

During the surreal early weeks of the lockdown, the notion of long-term social distancing seemed logical and sensible, but as the weeks rolled by, the utter ludicrousness of it became apparent. Matt Hancock helped to emphasise the absurdity of it all when he said that it will not be possible to hug anyone outside of our household until the virus was "totally sorted". Risible.

A government minister telling the British people that they will not be able to touch another person outside of their "household" for an undefined amount of time just about sums up the madness of this time. I would think him a dangerous totalitarian if it wasn't obvious he was just flailing around haplessly unsure what to say or do.

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Brick Wall

Norway 'could have controlled infection without lockdown': health chief

Camilla Stoltenberg, Director General Norwegian Institute of Public Health
© Difi/Flickr
Camilla Stoltenberg, Director General of the Norwegian Institute of Public Health, believes less far-going measures would have been sufficient.
The head of the Norwegian Institute of Public Health believes Norway could have brought the coronavirus pandemic under control without a lockdown, and called for the country to avoid such far-reaching measures if hit by a second wave.

Camilla Stoltenberg, the agency's Director General, told state broadcaster NRK that the agency's analysis now suggested less restrictive measures would have been sufficient.

"Our assessment now....is that we could possibly have achieved the same effects and avoided some of the unfortunate impacts by not locking down, but by instead keeping open but with infection control measures," she said.

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Cloud Lightning

Circular firing squad scores a hit: Real reason Michael Moore's film axed from YouTube is climate wrongthink, not copyright

michael moore
© Reuters / Carlos Allegri
Moore burnishing his liberal cred at Bernie Sanders rally.
Michael Moore's popular yet controversial exposé of the "green" movement's corruption has finally been knocked off YouTube by a tactic that's as cowardly as it is underhanded. Nothing upsets a cult like a successful apostate.

Planet of the Humans, posted to YouTube for free viewing on Earth Day, to the horror of the climate-change industrial complex, was removed from the platform on Monday, after a British environmental photographer filed a copyright claim. The deplatforming represents a triumph for the deep-pocketed "green" superstars who've been tearing their hair out over the film for the past month, livid over the unflattering portrayal of their crusade by the once-beloved liberal filmmaker, but unable to shut him up.

Photographer Toby Smith claimed the film - which had been viewed more than 8.3 million times before its removal - used "several seconds" of footage he'd shot of rare earth elements being mined without his permission. Unlike previous attempts to get the film taken down - which targeted its distributor with claims the film was packed with falsehoods and "fossil fuel industry talking points" - this angle of attack was successful, concealing the iron fist of censorship within the velvet glove of copyright law.

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Brick Wall

Japan ends coronavirus emergency with 850 deaths and no lockdown

tokyo face masks
People wearing face masks cross a street in Tokyo's Shinjuku area on May 25 amid the novel coronavirus pandemic.
Japan's Prime Minister Shinzo Abe has announced the end of his state of emergency declaration for the novel coronavirus pandemic, with just 851 deaths reported and without ever implementing a lockdown.

"I have decided to end the state of emergency across the nation," Abe said during a televised press conference on Monday. "In just over a month and a half, we almost brought (the infection) situation under control."

Abe cautioned that lifting the order did not mean that the novel virus was gone from Japan. "Our battle against the virus will continue," he said, while urging the Japanese people to continue following stringent social distancing guidance.

Comment: It's quite likely that, much as with Russia, the Japanese did not count every death with coronavirus, despite comorbidities, as deaths from coronavirus. This will make a remarkable difference with the numbers and give a much more realistic view of how deadly the virus truly is. Had western nations been following the same logic, their numbers would likely have appeared similar to Japan's. But they wouldn't want that, now would they?

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The Great UnReason of 2020: The 'curious, but quite authentic, inability to think'

Comment: ...hence Sott.net is 'the world for people who think'. Our relatively small readership is roughly how many out there can think!

Hannah Arendt.
Upon the Nazis' rise to power, Hannah Arendt, a Jewish woman who would go on to become a considerable 20th century philosopher, had to flee with her family from her native Germany.

Once the war was over and some prominent Nazis were brought to justice, Arendt attended the trial in Jerusalem of Adolph Eichmann, the architect of the Holocaust.

The experience left an indelible impression upon her, one that would shape the trajectory of her philosophical thinking. What she observed was that, much to her surprise, Eichmann wasn't the incarnation of evil that she expected to encounter. His actions were monstrous, yes; but he was remarkably ordinary or "banal," to use Arendt's term of choice.

What struck Arendt was Eichmann's "curious, but authentic, inability to think."
"However monstrous the deeds were, the doer was neither monstrous nor demonic, and the only specific characteristic one could detect in his past as well as in his behavior during the trial and the preceding police examination was something entirely negative: it was not stupidity but a curious, quite authentic inability to think."

Light Saber

It's time to step into the arena

There's a passage in Teddy Roosevelt's famous 1910 "Citizenship in a Republic" speech I want to share with you today:
If a man's efficiency is not guided and regulated by a moral sense, then the more efficient he is the worse he is, the more dangerous to the body politic. Courage, intellect, all the masterful qualities, serve but to make a man more evil if they are merely used for that man's own advancement, with brutal indifference to the rights of others. It speaks ill for the community if the community worships those qualities and treats their possessors as heroes regardless of whether the qualities are used rightly or wrongly. It makes no difference as to the precise way in which this sinister efficiency is shown. It makes no difference whether such a man's force and ability betray themselves in a career of money-maker or politician, soldier or orator, journalist or popular leader.

If the man works for evil, then the more successful he is the more he should be despised and condemned by all upright and far-seeing men. To judge a man merely by success is an abhorrent wrong; and if the people at large habitually so judge men, if they grow to condone wickedness because the wicked man triumphs, they show their inability to understand that in the last analysis free institutions rest upon the character of citizenship, and that by such admiration of evil they prove themselves unfit for liberty.
The above words strike me as a perfect description of the deep hole we find ourselves in presently throughout these United States of America. It takes a whole nation to screw things up as badly as we have, and boy have we ever.


Release the Karens! Entitled tyrants are the latest scourge plaguing coronavirus-ridden US

© Brett Sayles from Pexels
Viral video shows a mob of shoppers berating a woman for entering a Staten Island store without wearing a face mask. This and other examples show the tyranny of the 'Karens' which is sweeping the US, mid-coronavirus crisis.

Just one tweet of the Staten Island scene, which was originally posted on Facebook, has been viewed more than 6.2 million times since it was posted on May 25.

"This mess has revealed a LOT of people's inner Karen," quipped one Twitter user, referencing the wildly popular meme depicting the entitled middle-aged woman who bosses fellow citizens around with impunity and demands to speak to the manager.

Comment: When a tyrannical government uses a contrived crisis to hystericize and empower its authoritarian followers a plague of Karens will surely follow: Also check out SOTT radio's: Objective:Health - The Menace of the Authoritarian Follower


Enough is enough: Belgium 'won't impose' strict measures again even in case of 2nd coronavirus wave

© Reuters / Francois Lenoir
Belgium will not return to the strict measures imposed for nearly two months to combat the coronavirus outbreak, even if there's a second wave of Covid-19 cases, according to the interior minister.

The country of 11.5 million people effectively closed down in mid-March, with only shops selling food and pharmacies operating. Other activities have steadily resumed in May, including the reopening of non-food stores. "The first lockdown has taken care of the situation in which we have ended up. These were exceptional circumstances, but we never had Italian or Spanish conditions," minister Pieter De Crem told the Flemish television channel VTM on Sunday.

"If there was a second wave, then I think we will find ourselves in a different situation, namely with testing and tracing. But I think we can rule out that we will have to go back to the tough measures," De Crem said.

Belgium, which is home to both the EU and NATO headquarters, has been among the worst affected countries in Europe, with 57,092 Covid-19 cases and 9,280 deaths, Reuters said. The number of cases, hospital admissions and fatalities has declined since peaking in early April.