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Mon, 30 Mar 2020
The World for People who Think

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Surprise! Greta Thunberg BIOPIC Reveals Cameras Were Rolling From Day One of her 'Viral' Rise

Teenage environmental activist Greta Thunberg is the subject of a forthcoming documentary film - made by a crew that has followed her since the early days of her school strike. Still believe her rise to fame was an accident?

Thunberg, recently crowned Time magazine's Person of the Year, can add documentary film subject to her burgeoning resumé. The film, tentatively titled 'Greta,' was announced by Deadline on Monday for a 2020 Hulu premiere. Director Nathan Grossman has followed the young climate prodigy to the ends of the Earth, from her school-striking on the sidewalk in front of the Swedish Parliament, to the high seas aboard the $4mn racing yacht Malizia II. Grossman's only other IMDB credit to date is a Swedish film titled "Köttets lustar" (or "Lusts of the Meat"), which, while it sounds pornographic, purports to be the story of one man "looking over his life as a carnivore."

Light Saber

Former FBI Chief Says Sorry for 'Sloppy' Russia Investigation, But Media Interview Exposes Him as a Liar

comey testimony intelligence committee
© Reuters / Jim Bourg
Former FBI Director James Comey testifies before a Senate Intelligence Committee hearing
A report by the Justice Department's Inspector General published on Monday report found 17 irregularities, inaccuracies and omissions in the FBI's FISA warrant application, used to obtain permission to surveil former Trump campaign adviser Carter Page.

The warrant application was built heavily on a dossier of salacious and unproven gossip collected by former British spy Christopher Steele.

Testifying before the Senate Judiciary Committee on Wednesday, Inspector General Michael Horowitz said that the FBI's "basic, fundamental, and serious errors" amounted to a "failure" by the "entire chain of command."

Comey himself apologized to Fox News' Christopher Wallace on Sunday, saying "I'm sorry" for misrepresenting the role of the Steele Dossier in kickstarting the investigation. "I was wrong" to say that the FISA process was followed correctly, he continued, admitting to "real sloppiness" in his agency.

Comment: Comey still believes in his choirboy image, when all evidence seems to be against him. Now it's all coming out in the mainstream media, as they have no choice but to report on the tsunami of information breaking loose.

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MindMatters: Antifragile: Things That Gain From Disorder

Fragile things hate chaos, volatility and randomness. The slightest jolt can break them. But what is the opposite of fragility? Not resilience or robustness. Resilient things are neutral to stressors. They take a beating, but remain unchanged. So what likes from disorder? Our languages don't have a word for such a property, or at least they didn't, until Nassim Taleb came around.

Antifragile is the property of things that gain from disorder: like muscle, economies, creativity, and character. And today on MindMatters we delve into Taleb's book on the subject. Insightful, down to earth, witty and practical, Taleb's writing is one of a kind. Just like the man himself.

Running Time: 01:17:14

Download: MP3 — 70.7 MB

Bizarro Earth

Someone Meddled in the UK Election & It Wasn't Russia

UK news
Ladies and gentlemen I have here at my fingertips indisputable proof that egregious election meddling took place in the United Kingdom on Thursday.

Before you get all excited, no, it wasn't the Russians. It wasn't the Chinese, the Iranians, Cobra Command or the Legion of Doom. I'm not going to get any Rachel Maddow-sized paychecks for revealing this evidence to you, nor am I going to draw in millions of credulous viewers waiting with bated breath for a bombshell revelation of an international conspiracy that will invalidate the results of the election.

In fact, hardly anyone will even care.

Hardly anyone will care because this election interference has been happening right out in the open, and was perfectly legal. And nobody will suffer any consequences for it.

Comment: The evidence is damning, and yet, as the saying goes: "Every nation gets the government it deserves."

See also:

War Whore

'Undeniable Evidence': Explosive Classified Docs Reveal Afghan War Mass Deception

© Getty
In what's already being hailed as a defining and explosive "Pentagon papers" moment, a cache of previously classified documents obtained by The Washington Post show top Pentagon leaders continuously lied to the public about the "progress" of the now eighteen-year long Afghan war.

The some 2,000 pages of notes from interviews of senior officials who have shaped US strategy in Afghanistan confirm that "senior US officials failed to tell the truth about the war in Afghanistan throughout the 18-year campaign, making rosy pronouncements they knew to be false... hiding unmistakable evidence the war had become unwinnable," according to the bombshell Post report.

The internal interviews and statements were unearthed via Freedom of Information Act request and span the Bush, Obama and Trump administrations. The trove further confirms that US leaders knew vast amounts of money was being wasted in a futile attempt to "Westernize the nation".

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MindMatters: Ordinary Men: What Makes Normal People Do Monstrous Things

ordinary men
Are killers born or made? Depending on who you ask, you'll get a variety of responses: all humans are good - it's only the 'environment' or 'society' that makes them do bad things; anyone who engages in murder must be a cold-blooded psychopath, born to kill. But simple explanations come from simple minds. It's not a matter of either/or. Some people are born that way, like psychopaths. Some have the strength of character to resist the impulse to conform. But most people are somewhere in between, easily swayed to do the will of whoever is giving the orders.

On today's MindMatters we delve into the hellish depths of World War II and Christopher Browning's excellent but disturbing book, Ordinary Men: Reserve Battalion 101 and the Final Solution in Poland. His research confirms what studies like those of Milgram demonstrated in the lab: normal people show a spectrum of responses to the influence of authority. A small minority are very willing to inflict harm to others. Another small minority refuses. But the vast majority go along, even if it makes them sick to the stomach and traumatized for life.

Running Time: 01:24:17

Download: MP3 — 112 MB

Gold Seal

Why Sexual Morality May be Far More Important Than You Ever Thought

The Proposal by Sir Alma Tadema, 1892

The Proposal by Sir Alma Tadema, 1892
One winter afternoon I was relaxing with a half-dozen fellow graduate philosophy students discussing theories of law and punishment. About an hour into the discussion, it occurred to me that some moral laws are necessary because, although they might limit pleasure and enjoyment in the short term, they actually minimize suffering and maximize human fulfillment in the long term.

A few days ago I finished studying Sex and Culture for the second time. It is a remarkable book summarizing a lifetime of research by Oxford social anthropologist J.D. Unwin.[1] The 600+ page book is, in Unwin's words, only a "summary" of his research — seven volumes would be required to lay it all out.[2] His writings suggest he was a rationalist, believing that science is our ultimate tool of inquiry (it appears he was not a religious man). As I went through what he found, I was repeatedly reminded of the thought I had as a philosophy student: some moral laws may be designed to minimize human suffering and maximize human flourishing long term.

Unwin examines the data from 86 societies and civilizations to see if there is a relationship between sexual freedom and the flourishing of cultures. What makes the book especially interesting is that we in the West underwent a sexual revolution in the late 1960's, 70's, and 80's and are now in a position to test the conclusions he arrived at more than 40 years earlier.


SOTT Earth Changes Summary - November 2019: Extreme Weather, Planetary Upheaval, Meteor Fireballs

secs nov
© Sott.net
As if mocking the propaganda of anthropogenic climate change advocates, Nature has - once again - provided a wild and varied ride for the inhabitants of planet Earth in the month of November.

In keeping with the pattern of recent years, winter arrived early again in many parts of the Northern Hemisphere, disrupting normal life and food production. The US saw new cold and snowfall records over much of its territory, even as 'Extinction Rebellion' zealots demanded further man-made CO2 reductions to 'save the planet from overheating'. Exceptional snowfalls and early freezing temperatures also left their mark in Europe, and parts of Africa, Asia, and the Middle East.

Heavy rain, floods, and landslides also wreaked havoc this month, with South Sudan, Kenya, Congo, Algeria, the UK, France, the Philippines, Australia, and northern Mexico all affected by hundreds of deaths, thousands displaced and significant damage to local infrastructure. Italy was hit once again by extreme weather this month: storms, floods, and early snow left a path of destruction across several provinces.

Our viewers will not be surprised to learn that a significant number of meteor fireballs and unexpected NEOs also made an appearance in our skies last month, shocking and delighting many eyewitnesses and leaving many experts wondering whether their claim that they can track all dangerous NEOs is really just 'pie in the sky'.

All that and more in this month's SOTT Earth Changes Summary...

Check out our past installments:


Psychologists Explain How To Stop Overthinking Everything

stop over thinking
Thinking about something in endless circles — is exhausting.

While everyone overthinks a few things once in a while, chronic over-thinkers spend most of their waking time ruminating, which puts pressure on themselves. They then mistake that pressure to be stress.

"There are people who have levels of overthinking that are just pathological," says clinical psychologist Catherine Pittman, an associate professor in the psychology department at Saint Mary's College in Notre Dame, Indiana.

"But the average person also just tends to overthink things." Pittman is also the author of "Rewire Your Anxious Brain: How to Use the Neuroscience of Fear to End Anxiety, Panic, and Worry."

Overthinking can take many forms: endlessly deliberating when making a decision (and then questioning the decision), attempting to read minds, trying to predict the future, reading into the smallest of details, etc.

People who overthink consistently run commentaries in their heads, criticising and picking apart what they said and did yesterday, terrified that they look bad — and fretting about a terrible future that might await them

'What ifs' and 'shoulds' dominate their thinking, as if an invisible jury is sitting in judgement on their lives. And they also agonise over what to post online because they are deeply concerned about how other people will interpret their posts and updates.

Alarm Clock

The Mysterious Death of White Helmets Founder James Le Mesurier

le mesurier white helmets

On Her Majesty's Top Secret Service
On November 11, 2019, the British founder of the notorious White Helmets, James Le Mesurier, died in Istanbul, Turkey. The circumstances surrounding his death immediately elicited a flurry of Turkish and corporate media reports, many of them contradictory, as the details of his final hours came to light.

Mark Urban, the diplomatic editor at BBC Newsnight, immediately tweeted that "a former colleague" had told him it was impossible to "fall from that balcony," referencing Le Mesurier's reported cause of death and intimated that there may have been "state involvement." Urban did not identify his mysterious "former colleague" or explain what made him sufficiently qualified to conclude that Le Mesurier's death may have been a state-sanctioned hit.

Urban deleted his tweets soon after, maintaining that "there is a good deal of suspicion it may be murder by a state actor, but others suggest he may have taken his own life." Did Urban jump the gun? Was he instructed to delete the tweets, and if so, by whom?