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Mon, 18 Jan 2021
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China detects just 103 new coronavirus cases in city of 11 million, enforces local restrictions

china masks
© REUTERS / Thomas Peter
A year after the coronavirus first erupted in Wuhan, China has declared "wartime mode" and has locked down another city of 11 million to combat a resurgence of infections.

Authorities in Shijiazhuang, a city in northeastern China, have barred people and vehicles from leaving in efforts to curb infection spread after the country reported its biggest one-day increase in five months with 103 new cases.

The city has been among the hardest hit after a handful of infections first cropped up in Beijing mid-December and spread across at least four surrounding provinces, including Hebei, where Shijiazhuang is located.

Mr. Potato

NYT reporter Sarah Jeong warns conservative writer Andy Ngo is a 'real threat', should be censored on Twitter

sarah jeong andy ngo
Sarah Jeong, the New York Times reporter who made headlines in 2018 for antagonizing white people, has branded conservative journalist Andy Ngo "dangerous" and called for his censorship on Twitter. In a tweet posted on Jan. 9, Jeong cited a thread from Donovan Farley, another journalist who claimed that Ngo repeatedly "willfully deceives his followers into a frenzy that results in death and rape threats" for journalists and "anyone else" supposedly targeted by his "scorn."

Comment: Exposing left-wing radicals is the only thing Ngo is guilty of, but in this day and age it's enough to get you banned permanently from social media. You can support him by buying his book Unmasked: Inside Antifa's Radical Plan to Destroy Democracy (if you can find it):

See also:

Bad Guys

Tucker Carlson: Who will stand up for everyday Trump voters facing retribution from the left?

washington dc protest capitol storming
The Republican Party must look after its voters, not its leaders

Within minutes of Trump supporters breaching the U.S. Capitol building Wednesday, virtually every powerful person in the country erupted in rage at the president.

Business leaders demanded that Trump be removed from office immediately under the 25th Amendment. Members of Congress clamored to impeach him, and at least one Democrat suggested that anyone in Congress who supported his claims of election fraud must be expelled. Meanwhile, the media set about denouncing Trump as a terrorist and a murderer, etc.

Notice a theme? The reaction was all about Donald Trump. The people in charge of every institution in American life spend all day talking about Donald Trump. You may not have noticed, because that's not very different from any other day over the past five-and-a-half years since he announced his candidacy.

Comment: An interesting commentary on Tucker's above piece from streiff over at Red State, is worth reading in its entirety, but here's a snippet:
Where Carlson gets it wrong, though, is the unspoken assumption that at some point, before all the icky people became visible, that the GOP establishment stood up for and protected Americans. That is false. Who sent our manufacturing overseas? Who coddled Communist China's theft of intellectual property? Who allowed nearly unbridled illegal immigration to help their buddies in the US Chamber of Commerce drive down wages with cheap labor? Who pushed to increase the number of H1B visa holders using the myth that there are not enough STEM grads to fill the jobs when a large majority of US STEM grads never find employment in that field? Don't look at the Democrats. Look at the GOP.

The main difference between the GOP and Democrat establishments is that the Democrats want you dead while the GOP wants your vote...of course, given what we know of the Democrat get-out-the-vote program, they may want you dead and then use you to vote for them.


Twitter suspends account of Judicial Watch's Tom Fitton, whistleblower of government malfeasance

Tom Fitton
© York Du/NTD
President of Judicial Watch Tom Fitton
President of Judicial Watch Tom Fitton said Twitter had suspended his account for at least seven days for allegedly violating the platform's rules.

Fitton said he was locked out of his account for posting "#Hydroxychloroquine is a safe drug," a topic he has been posting on since September. He said at that time, Twitter "specifically found that it was not in violate [sic] of its rules" but has now decided to take action against the account.

"I have 'appealed' but we all know, given this background, that this is not about HCQ, it is about finding a pretext to silence another leading conservative voice," Fitton said in a statement on Parler.

Twitter's ban comes as big tech companies ramp up their policing of statements and comments from President Donald Trump, conservatives, and other voices they claim may cause harm.


Greenwald slams liberals for being 'overwhelmingly supportive' of Big Tech 'brute force' against conservatives

Left-wing journalist Glenn Greenwald panned liberals on Monday for supporting concerted Big Tech efforts to "manipulate U.S. politics" over the past three months.

Greenwald pointed to censorship of the New York Post's reporting on Hunter Biden's laptop in October, Twitter's permament ban of President Trump and the suspension of right-leaning social media site Parler from Apple, Amazon, and Google. These companies, he said last week, have more power than any companies in world history due to their ability to control speech and information.

"Tech monopolies -- FB, Google, Apple, Amazon -- have more concentrated wealth & power than any in history. They have used brute force 3 times in 3 months to manipulate US politics: censoring NY Post, banning Trump, destroying Parler. And liberals are overwhelmingly supportive," Greenwald tweeted.

"That these Silicon Valley monoplies are grace menaces to political freedom & economic well-being is *not* a right-wing view," Greenwald wrote, paralleling Democrats supporting Big Tech with their alliance with the War on Terror, of which he has been deeply critical. "Authoritarians never believe they're authoritarians, no matter how much censorship, surveillance, jingoism, & imprisonment they demand."

Star of David

Israel announces new settler homes, risks Biden's anger

Givat Hamatos settlement
© AP/Maya Allenruzzo/File
Givat Hamatos settlement preparations
Israel on Monday advanced plans to build 800 new settler homes in the occupied West Bank, a move that could strain ties with the incoming administration of President-elect Joe Biden.

Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu's office announced the move, saying it would include 100 homes in a settlement where an Israeli woman was killed last month in an attack allegedly carried out by a Palestinian assailant.

The announcement will burnish Netanyahu's right-wing credentials in a tough campaign ahead of March elections, but it could anger Biden, who is opposed to settlement expansion and has clashed with Israel over it in the past.

Israel captured the West Bank and east Jerusalem in the 1967 war, territories the Palestinians want for their future state. Nearly 500,000 Israelis live in settlements scattered across the West Bank. The Palestinians view settlements as a violation of international law and an obstacle to peace, a position with wide international support.

The Palestinian Authority's Foreign Ministry condemned the latest announcement, accusing Israel of "racing against time" to build settlements before President Donald Trump leaves office.

Eye 1

WHO: Covid vaccine roll out won't achieve herd immunity this year, 'amplification effect from vaccines' unknown

© Reuters / PA Wire / Aaron Chown
A medical worker draws an injection of the Pfizer-BioNTech coronavirus vaccine into a syringe at the Hurley Clinic in London, Britain.
The roll-out of coronavirus vaccines in many countries will not provide herd immunity from the global pandemic this year, several health experts said on Monday, citing limited access for poor countries, community trust problems and potential virus mutations.

"We won't get back to normal quickly," Dale Fisher, chairman of the World Health Organization's (WHO) Outbreak Alert and Response Network, told the Reuters Next conference.

"We know we need to get to herd immunity and we need that in a majority of countries, so we are not going to see that in 2021," Fisher said. "There might be some countries that might achieve it but even then that will not create 'normal' especially in terms of border controls."

Comment: This is nonsense.

Comment: It's quite clear from the data that these experimental vaccines could very well turn a relatively harmless virus into a catastrophic problem for humanity: COVID Mass Vaccination Experiment: Prepare For The Worst With This Health Protocol


What the left wants to ignore about slain Capitol Police Officer Brian Sicknick

Brian sicknick
© United States Capitol Police/Handout via REUTERS
US Capitol Police officer Brian Sicknick
On Thursday, Brian Sicknick, an officer with the US Capitol Police, died from injuries sustained during the storming of the Capitol building. Democratic leaders have presented Sicknick as a martyr of the #Resistance against President Trump and his dangerous supporters. Reality is more complicated.

House Speaker Nancy Pelosi described Sicknick's death as a reminder of the need to "protect our country from all threats, foreign and domestic." President-elect Joe Biden suggested that whoever backed Trump supports "an all-out assault on our institutions of our democracy." The day's violence, it seems, has become an all-purpose excuse to denounce and ­silence anyone not sufficiently anti-Trump.

Yet neither Biden nor Pelosi reckoned with an uncomfortable fact: Sicknick was a Trump supporter himself, as his friend Caroline Behringer announced shortly after his death. Far from sharing the views of the #Resistance, he had written letters to his congressman opposing Trump's impeachment.

Like many Trump supporters who are now being censored, he ­believed that the system is fundamentally rigged in favor of a narrow elite. He had used fiery rhetoric, even called for regime change in America.

The people who claim to honor Sicknick have elided these facts. Acknowledging them would undermine their ­effort to label the 75 million Americans who supported Trump as a domestic threat. Already, unelected Silicon Valley billionaires are using Sicknick's death to justify censorship of views he expressed. Liberals are cheering the limitation of free speech. Leftists are applauding the exercise of corporate power.

Comment: Another Capitol Police officer has died, but no disclosure of cause nor link to the Capitol riot has been made:
US Capitol Police officer Howard Charles Liebengood, 51, died while off-duty on Saturday, according to a statement released Sunday by the Capitol Police and the White House. Liebengood was assigned to the Senate Division and had been with the Capitol Police since April 2005. Liebengood was on duty during the riot on Wednesday, per a statement from the Capitol Police Officers' Union, though it was not immediately clear if his death was linked to the riot.

Liebengood also had family ties to the Senate. His father, Howard S. Liebengood, was the Senate Sergeant-at-Arms from 1981 to 1983.

Trump ordered U.S. flags at the White House and other public property to fly at half-staff through Jan. 13 "as a sign of respect for the service and sacrifice" of Sicknick and Liebengood.

House Majority Leader Nancy Pelosi:
"Officer Liebengood was a patriot who dedicated his life to defending the Capitol and protecting all who served work in and visit this temple of our Democracy. His passing is a great tragedy that compounds the horror of this past week. May Officer Liebengood's service be an inspiration to support and defend the Constitution and protect the American people."
Sen. Chris Coons, D-Del., said Liebengood had been posted at the door nearest his office, where they got to know each other. "Howie was one of the kindest and most thoughtful people I have met in my decade in Washington. My heart breaks for his family, friends and colleagues."

Matt Waldrip, chief of staff to Sen. Mitt Romney, R-Utah, recalled that "talking with him was often the best part of my Senate day." "I know Howie well enough to know he did everything he could on Wednesday," he wrote. "We love Howie. We'll honor him forever."

Nancy Cordes, chief congressional correspondent for CBS News, recalled that Liebengood "always had a smile on his face and a kind word to share, even at 6:45 in the morning."

See also:
DC Officer Sicknick's death driven by medical condition; reports of fire extinguisher attack unconfirmed

Alarm Clock

Free speech platform Gab reports 750% increase in traffic amidst big tech crackdown - Parler goes offline - Twitter stock crashes

© Getty Images via AFP / Justin Sullivan / Getty Images North America
Gab.com, the free speech friendly social network, says traffic has increased by more than 750 percent in the past few days, following the blacklisting of President Donald Trump from most mainstream tech platforms.

"Our traffic is up 753% in the past 24 hours. Tens of millions of visits," said Gab in response to a question about slow loading speeds.

The free speech network announced that it would bring ten new servers online to handle the increased traffic volume.

Gab was the first free speech alternative to Twitter. It takes a hardline stance on freedom of speech, allowing all legal content except pornography. Users are allowed to control their own experience on the platform through the creation of custom word filters and blocks.

Comment: What a concept! Let people block what they want blocked, instead of getting Big Brother to do it for everyone. But that's a bit too tolerant for authoritarian freaks...

Gab takes an equally hardline stance on illegal content and threats of violence, encouraging users to proactively report such content for removal.

Despite this longstanding policy, both Apple and Google have, for years banned the Gab app from their app stores, a fate which has also befallen Parler.

Comment: Meanwhile Parler is being punished. After this initial threat:

Amazon shut down the network early this morning. It was reportedly hacked, with all its users' personal data leaked online:
In their viral post, the Redditor asserted that one of Parler's hosting platforms, Twilio, accidentally exposed the app's security authentications via a press release. This in turn could have allowed any person to create a blank administrator account and access all of Parler's private content, which, besides message history and geo data, might have included users' driver's license photos, which were used to create a verified account.
Parler is reportedly suing Amazon:

Pinterest has joined in the criminal pile-on, cracking down on 'hateful' pro-Trump content.
The imageboard platform, best known for its cooking recipes and interior design tips, confirmed that it has been limiting hashtags related to pro-Trump topics, such as #StopTheSteal, in an effort to weed out unsavory content.
"Pinterest isn't a place for threats, promotion of violence or hateful content," a Pinterest spokesperson told Axios. "Our team is continuing to monitor and removing harmful content, including misinformation and conspiracy theories that may incite violence."
Welcome to 1984. There are even calls for digitally removing Trump from his cameo in Home Alone 2.

Twitter shares have dropped over 11%. But lost profits won't stop them. This is a full-on ideological hysteria that will lead to nothing good. Just as Covid-19 provided the pretext for the institution and normalization of totalitarian government measures, the Capitol Hill riot is only a pretext to give the totalitarians what they've always wanted.


Understandable derangement

Illusion of Power
© Eric Peters Auto
Today - Monday - may be the day the Orange Man is dragged feet first out of the White House. Even if not, the day is coming when his die-hard supporters will have to deal with the hangover of the delusion that by some deux ex machina - or "kraken" - the Orange Man's fortunes are going to be reversed at the very last minute, just wait and see. Generals with no commands are saying so!

Cling tight to the fantasy because the actuality is just too much to bear.

Here is the bitter pill that must be swallowed:

Facts are irrelevant now. It does not matter that the election probably was stolen any more than it matters that a "mask" isn't stopping the spread of anything (except sanity). A medieval mentality is rising from the shattered remains of the Enlightenment. A new Dark Age is descending, defined by irrationality rabidized, as it was 500 years ago. If you listen, you can already hear the cry . . .

Burn the witch!

Just sub in "Trumper" - or conservative or for that matter anyone who questions anything the new priest class says the faith requires. People worry about the Second Amendment when the First is already on the rack, its tendons snapping, bones dislocating. How will the Second fare when its turn comes?

Yet many people on the Trump (or other-than-Biden) side still do not fully appreciate what they face. They retain their own anachronistic faith that facts matter; that if only the people knew the truth about the election! About Biden! About this virus that doesn't kill 99.8-something percent of the healthy population!

The truth does not matter.

It is no defense, either.