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James Quinn is a senior director of strategic planning for a major university. James has held financial positions with a retailer, homebuilder and university in his 25-year career. Those positions included treasurer, controller, and head of strategic planning. He is married with three boys and... More
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  • GOOGLE, CHINA, THE NSA AND THE FOURTH TURNING

    "Even if you're not doing anything wrong, you're being watched and recorded. …it's getting to the point where you don't have to have done anything wrong, you simply have to eventually fall under suspicion from somebody, even by a wrong call, and then they can use this system to go back in time and scrutinize every decision you've ever made, every friend you've ever discussed something with, and attack you on that basis, to sort of derive suspicion from an innocent life." - Edward Snowden

    google big brother

    In my previous article Do No Evil Google - Censor & Snitch for the StateI addressed my experience with censorship through direct and indirect means by Google, other media related corporations and the Deep State they choose to protect, promote and perpetuate through propaganda. I found it interesting that websites heavily dependent on Google Adsense revenue who normally publish my articles either didn't publish it or released it at a time when the least amount of visitors would see it. The almighty dollar usually wins out over truth in our one dimensional degenerate capitalism society, driven by greed, consumerism, gluttony and debt.

    In this article I'll examine how Google, Microsoft, Facebook Verizon and the rest of the internet based mega-corporations have consciously cooperated with the NSA and the rest of the surveillance state to violate the Fourth Amendment rights of every American. Our Founding Fathers had plenty of experience with authoritarian overlords who had no hesitation in kicking in the doors of private citizens to search and seize whatever they desired. The men who formulated the Constitution and Bill of Rights were clear and concise in their language. They laid out the right of all citizens to privacy in one perfectly succinct sentence. The putrid den of vipers in Congress today would use 10,000 sentences to insure this right would be null and void.

    The right of the people to be secure in their persons, houses, papers, and effects, against unreasonable searches and seizures, shall not be violated, and no Warrants shall issue, but upon probable cause, supported by Oath or affirmation, and particularly describing the place to be searched, and the persons or things to be seized.

    Media mouthpieces for the Deep State use their platform to lie, misinform and obscure the truth about a basic right owed to all Americans. They claim we have a living Constitution, while they methodically and systematically murder it. The only rights that matter are the rights of the invisible government of rich powerful men who pull the strings in this corporate fascist surveillance state. Justice Potter Stewart illuminated the Fourth Amendment in the 1967 Katz case. He concluded the Fourth Amendment protects people, not places.

    A "search" occurs for purposes of the Fourth Amendment when the government violates a person's "reasonable expectation of privacy." Katz's reasonable expectation of privacy thus provided the basis to rule the government's intrusion, though electronic means rather than physical entry, was a search covered by the Fourth Amendment, and thus necessitated a warrant. Today, our Big Brother government controllers use the Constitution and Fourth Amendment to wipe their asses, while goliath media corporations cooperate to keep the profits flowing.

    "Even though we don't know which companies the NSA has compromised - or by what means - knowing that they could have compromised any of them is enough to make us mistrustful of all of them. This is going to make it hard for large companies like Google and Microsoft to get back the trust they lost. Even if they succeed in limiting government surveillance. Even if they succeed in improving their own internal security. The best they'll be able to say is: "We have secured ourselves from the NSA, except for the parts that we either don't know about or can't talk about." - Bruce Schneier

    The profane alliance between big banks, big corporations, and big government has created the Big Brother surveillance society we are living under today. And 95% of the populace is either willfully ignorant or perfectly happy with a boot stomping on their face forever. We have willingly become hopelessly enslaved while believing we are free. We think we are free to buy whatever clothes, iGadgets, baubles and trinkets we desire, while becoming imprisoned in the chains of credit card debt hawked by Wall Street bankers. We think we are free to pursue higher education, while being saddled with government peddled non-dischargeable student loan debt and few job opportunities. We think we are free to buy/lease whatever new vehicle we choose every three years, while falling into the trap of lifetime monthly payments to the financial elite. We imagine ourselves free to live in a 4,500 sq foot McMansion, 50 feet from another McMansion, while Wall Street creatively lures you into the shackles of an epoch of debt. We believe we live in a country admired for its morality and freedom, while in actuality the world despises us for our hubris, meddling, murdering and hypocrisy.

    We assumed we were free to communicate with other citizens, utilizing the amazing technological advances of the past twenty five years, in accordance with the freedoms guaranteed under the Fourth Amendment. American patriot Edward Snowden has revealed how wrong this assumption has proven to be. The puppeteers who control the politicians and government apparatchiks have no interest in allowing citizens privacy, freedom, liberty or free speech. They have a four pronged approach to controlling the masses.

    1. Use media propaganda and modern day bread and circuses (toxic processed food, reality TV, sports, movies) to amuse and confuse the government educated, eyes wide shut, populace.

    2. Use wars on poverty, drugs, and terror to keep the willfully ignorant masses cowering in fear, begging for more government programs, and pleading for more laws, regulations and statutes, which strip our freedoms, liberties and rights.

    3. Highly compensate the intellectuals, media pundits, economists, and thought leaders to promote the agenda of the ruling class. Truth is of no concern. Propaganda, misinformation, outright lies, and spinning a storyline are the techniques of choice to keep the masses bemused, confused and defused.

    4. As the Brave New World techniques begin to fail and more people are awakened to the increasing tyranny of an unelected invisible government, Orwellian techniques are instituted. The metadata collection by the NSA, with the cooperation of corporate America, is being done to intimidate those who might voice discontent and provide the controllers with the means to eliminate opposition and freedom of speech.

    A population unable or unwilling to think critically doesn't comprehend the extreme danger to our civil liberties from the unwarranted intrusion into our private lives by a surveillance police state bent on bribing, coercing and silencing dissent, truth and First Amendment rights. Civil libertarian, John Whitehead, captures the essence of our plight.

    "Intrinsically, privacy is precious to the extent that it is a component of a liberty. Part of citizenship in a free society is the expectation that one's personal affairs and physical person are inviolable so long as one remains within the law. A robust concept of freedom includes the freedom from constant and intrusive government surveillance of one's life. From this perspective, Fourth Amendment violations are objectionable for the simple fact that the government is doing something it has no license to do-that is, invading the privacy of a law-abiding citizen by monitoring their daily activities and laying hands on their person without any evidence of wrongdoing.

    Privacy is also instrumental in nature. This aspect of the right highlights the pernicious effects, rather than the inherent illegitimacy, of intrusive, suspicionless surveillance. For example, encroachments on individual privacy undermine democratic institutions by chilling free speech. When citizens-especially those espousing unpopular viewpoints-are aware that the intimate details of their personal lives are pervasively monitored by government, or even that they could be singled out for discriminatory treatment by government officials as a result of their First Amendment expressive activities, they are less likely to freely express their dissident views." - John W. Whitehead - A Government of Wolves: The Emerging American Police State

    Do No Evil, Unless it is Profitable

    "I can't in good conscience allow the US government to destroy privacy, internet freedom and basic liberties for people around the world with this massive surveillance machine they're secretly building." - Edward Snowden

    It's amazing how corporate principles, codes of conduct, ethics, and morality can be cast aside by men when their wealth and power is dependent upon casting them aside. Google's Do No Evil slogan is now a bad joke as they have consistently ignored their own motto by doing business with evil governments, bowing down to the demands of authoritarian surveillance states, and willingly handing over the private information of people to the government. They have done this in order to boost their profits and enrich their executives. The 120 million internet users in China are too big of a market, with vast profit potential, for Google to pass up over a little torture, murder, and repression by the Chinese government. Google bowed to the Chinese government and produced a censored, state-approved version of its search portal, enabling filters that block search terms such as Tibet, Taiwanese independence, Tiananmen Square protests, Falun Gong movement, freedom, democracy, political protest and prevent the engine from finding certain websites banned by the state. It also does not offer its blog or e-mail services in China in order to comply with government restrictions denying free speech. I guess evil is in the eye of the shareholder.

    Human rights groups are the only ones who have called out Google for their hypocrisy, censorship of free speech and worshiping at the altar of the almighty yuan. Google is not alone in kowtowing to the authoritarian regime in China, as Yahoo, Microsoft, Facebook and any other internet provider must agree to censorship and turning over private information to the authorities. Microsoft shut down the U.S. hosted, pseudonymous blog of a Chinese journalist, and Yahoo turned over to the Chinese government personal e-mail files of an online dissident who was subsequently sentenced to ten years in prison. These corporate tools of the state care not that China is still one of the most repressive countries on Earth, with tens of thousands jailed dissidents and political prisoners, as well as being a serial abuser of copyright laws.

    The Communist Party's propaganda department has ramped up operations at Office 1106, an organization which trawls cyberspace for subversion. All websites, bloggers and bulletin-board operators must register with the government and Beijing has a special internet police force responsible for shutting down "unacceptable" sites, blocking foreign news sites and jailing people for online postings. The press freedom group Reporters Without Borders described Google's acquiescence to authoritarianism as "a black day for freedom of expression in China". They realized this was the first step on a downward path to loss of freedom around the world:

    "But they continue to justify themselves by saying their presence has a long-term benefit. Yet the internet in China is becoming more and more isolated from the outside world and freedom of expression there is shrinking."

    The Free Tibet Campaign describes Google's surrender as an endorsement of censorship and repression. "With this move, Google's motto 'do no evil' is in smithereens," said the campaign's spokeswoman Alison Reynolds. "This also further contradicts those political leaders who attempt to convince us that foreign business can change China for the better." Google Earth does not recognize the word Tibet. These corporations use the predictable spin that it will notify users when access had been restricted and argues that it could play a more useful role in China by participating than by boycotting it. Tell that to the thousands of freedom fighters languishing in gulags. We know Google willingly censors on behalf of governments. Based on the revelations from Edward Snowden, you can be sure Google provides the identities of Chinese citizens who voice dissenting opinions about the Chinese government directly to the Chinese secret police. We are all enemies of the state and subject to surveillance, censorship and ultimately imprisonment. We are living in a modern technological dystopian nightmare, with no hope of awakening.

    "The world is not sliding, but galloping into a new transnational dystopia. This development has not been properly recognized outside of national security circles. It has been hidden by secrecy, complexity and scale. The internet, our greatest tool of emancipation, has been transformed into the most dangerous facilitator of totalitarianism we have ever seen. The internet is a threat to human civilization.

    These transformations have come about silently, because those who know what is going on work in the global surveillance industry and have no incentives to speak out. Left to its own trajectory, within a few years, global civilization will be a postmodern surveillance dystopia, from which escape for all but the most skilled individuals will be impossible. In fact, we may already be there.

    While many writers have considered what the internet means for global civilization, they are wrong. They are wrong because they do not have the sense of perspective that direct experience brings. They are wrong because they have never met the enemy." - Julian Assange - Cypherpunks: Freedom and the Future of the Internet

    Big Google and the Surveillance State

    "Big Brother in the form of an increasingly powerful government and in an increasingly powerful private sector will pile the records high with reasons why privacy should give way to national security, to law and order and the like." - William O. Douglas - Points of Rebellion, 1969

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    "We have seen segments of our Government, in their attitudes and action, adopt tactics unworthy of a democracy, and occasionally reminiscent of totalitarian regimes. We have seen a consistent pattern in which programs initiated with limited goals, such as preventing criminal violence or identifying foreign spies, were expanded to what witnesses characterized as "vacuum cleaners", sweeping in information about lawful activities of American citizens. The tendency of intelligence activities to expand beyond their initial scope is a theme which runs through every aspect of our investigative findings. Intelligence collection programs naturally generate ever-increasing demands for new data. And once intelligence has been collected, there are strong pressures to use it against the target."Church Committee -1975

    William O. Douglas and Frank Church foresaw the overreach of the surveillance state decades before Edward Snowden nobly sacrificed his future and risked his life to reveal the vast illegal collection of private phone calls, texts, emails, downloads, and every electronic communication of every person in America by a secret government agency operating in the shadows. The Chinese experience was a prelude to how Google, Yahoo, Verizon and the rest of the corporate internet/telecommunication complex would do whatever was demanded by the all-powerful NSA in order to expand their profits and avoid the ire of the Deep State.

    Edward Snowden threw a monkey wrench into the well- oiled gears of the cooperative efforts of the NSA, the British NSA - GCHQ, Google, Yahoo, Microsoft, Facebook, Apple, Verizon, etc. to conduct the greatest mass spying program in world history. The denials, finger pointing, obfuscation, and outright lies by government bureaucrats, politicians and corporate executives came fast and furious after Snowden's revelations. They were caught red handed committing illegal acts, in violation of the Fourth Amendment.

    Denial press releases regarding knowledge of this mass spying scheme from Google and Facebook appeared to be written by the same maggot public relations firm, as they were virtually identical.

    The reactions of Google and Yahoo were reminiscent of Captain Renault declaring "I'm shocked, shocked to find that gambling is going on in here!" in Casablanca.

    "We are outraged at the lengths to which the government seems to have gone to intercept data from our private fiber networks, and it underscores the need for urgent reform." - Google

    "We have strict controls in place to protect the security of our data centers, and we have not given access to our data centers to the NSA or to any other government agency." - Yahoo

    These faux expressions of outrage and surprise have been revealed by Snowden to be disingenuous and insincere. Glenn Greenwald and the Guardian verified the authenticity of a 41-slide NSA PowerPoint presentation, classified as top secret, used to train intelligence operatives on the capabilities of the PRISM program. The presentation claims "collection directly from the servers" of nine major US service providers, including Microsoft, Yahoo, Google, Facebook, and Apple. The presentation also claims the program is run with the assistance of these companies.

    Once they were caught in a lie, Google and the rest of the co-conspirators in this crime tried to backtrack and say they were just obeying their masters at the NSA. In a statement, Google said: "Google cares deeply about the security of our users' data. We disclose user data to government in accordance with the law, and we review all such requests carefully. From time to time, people allege that we have created a government 'back door' into our systems, but Google does not have a back door for the government to access private user data."

    Google is supposed to be the most highly advanced cutting edge tech company on the planet, but somehow their entire system is unencrypted and available to anyone with the means to access it. That sure seems convenient. They have plausible deniability, while allowing the NSA to syphon every piece of electronic communication on its networks. No wonder this NSA diagram had a big smiley face on it.

    Detail of an internal "NSA presentation slide" published by the Washington Post. The sketch shows where the public Internet meets the private cloud maintained by Google, and points out - with a smiley face - that the data within the cloud is unencrypted.

    The documents released by Snowden forced Google to admit to willingly providing data, names and communications directly to the NSA. Google has a special server drop-box for the NSA where requested and approved files are placed to be taken by the NSA via secure FTP. Some printed records are delivered by hand. How much data passes through this hand-off process isn't known because the company has refused to reveal that information.

    With all the brainpower at Google HQ it is beyond laughable to believe they had no idea the NSA was collecting metadata on such a vast scale. They allowed this to happen with a wink and a nod in order to keep profits flowing. Google, Yahoo and the rest of the captured high tech industry sold out the American people for profits. They were willing participants in the largest crime in U.S. history, and there are no repercussions or prosecutions because their co-conspirators are the very government who would have to prosecute them.

    The supposedly legal aspect of this spying program allows the NSA to gather huge amounts of Internet communications by legally compelling U.S. tech companies, including Google, to cooperate with officials and turn over all data that matches secret court approved search queries. This is authorized under Section 702 of the FISA Amendments Act. PRISM operations are overseen by the Foreign Intelligence Surveillance Court (FISC). None of this was known prior to Edward Snowden nobly deciding he could not let this go on in good conscience. Neither the government, Google nor the other communications companies would have ever revealed this program. Of course, the non-legal vacuuming of metadata is far worse and has no support whatsoever under the U.S. Constitution.

    To give you some perspective on the scale of this criminal enterprise, NSA analysts processed more than 180 million records within a time span of 30 days from Google's metadata system. The NSA gained access to who sent the message, who received the message, what the message contained and all audio and video sent on this system. The NSA secretly tapped into the private fiber-optic networks that connect Google's and Yahoo's worldwide data centers, allowing the spy agency to suck up "at will" bulk metadata and content belonging to users of the companies' services.

    Under a program called MUSCULAR, a joint project with British NSA counterpart the GCHQ, the NSA takes advantage of overseas taps to intercept data flowing within Google's and Yahoo's geographically distributed data "clouds," where multiple copies of user data are stored unencrypted. Google "PREF" cookies, which can help identify a user's web browser and serve up personalized ads allows NSA to single out an individual's communications among the sea of Internet data in order to send out software that can hack that person's computer.

    The question is why is our government doing this? Are they doing it for our protection or for our subjugation? The War on Terror is really a cover for corporate fascists to further enrich themselves and gain a stranglehold on the government and financial system. There is little or no threat from terrorists in this country. The few psychopaths out there cannot impact this country in a major way. But, fear can be used by those in power to solidify their control over the masses. Before 9/11 it would have seemed unthinkable for our country to descend into a dystopian society, surrendering privacy, anonymity and individualism.

    This bulk collection of private communications is their ace in the hole. Anyone who dares to question authority, resist the establishment or voice a dissenting opinion can be discredited and destroyed with personal information gathered by the NSA. One method for undermining those deemed "radicalizers" by the NSA is to document their online porn habits. The documents released by Snowden reveal NSA plans to blackmail non-conformists, as explained by Glenn Greenwald.

    "Among the vulnerabilities listed by the NSA that can be effectively exploited are 'viewing sexually explicit material online' and 'using sexually explicit persuasive language when communicating with inexperienced young girls.' "

    If the Deep State cannot bribe you with cash, they will invade your privacy and use personal communications to bribe you. Censorship can be exercised through many channels. The saddest part thus far is the lack of outrage by the American people. The majority of mouth breathing techno-narcissists in this country have never heard of Edward Snowden. They don't realize he is the Paul Revere of the next American Revolution. They don't understand the implications of not standing and fighting during this Fourth Turning. Unless enough people stand up and say NO, we will end up with turnkey tyranny.

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    "The great fear that I have regarding the outcome for America of these disclosures is that nothing will change. People won't be willing to take the risks necessary to stand up and fight to change things… And in the months ahead, the years ahead, it's only going to get worse. The NSA will say that… because of the crisis, the dangers that we face in the world, some new and unpredicted threat, we need more authority, we need more power, and there will be nothing the people can do at that point to oppose it. And it will be turnkey tyranny." - Edward Snowden

    In the final segment of this three part article - Fourth Turning: The People vs Big Brother - I'll discuss how I think this all fits into the Fourth Turning Crisis we are currently experiencing.

    Disclosure: I have no positions in any stocks mentioned, and no plans to initiate any positions within the next 72 hours. I wrote this article myself, and it expresses my own opinions. I am not receiving compensation for it. I have no business relationship with any company whose stock is mentioned in this article.

    Mar 12 1:45 PM | Link | Comment!
  • DO NO EVIL GOOGLE - CENSOR & SNITCH FOR THE STATE

    "The conscious and intelligent manipulation of the organized habits and opinions of the masses is an important element in democratic society. Those who manipulate this unseen mechanism of society constitute an invisible government which is the true ruling power of our country. We are governed, our minds are molded, our tastes formed, our ideas suggested, largely by men we have never heard of.

    This is a logical result of the way in which our democratic society is organized. Vast numbers of human beings must cooperate in this manner if they are to live together as a smoothly functioning society. In almost every act of our daily lives, whether in the sphere of politics or business, in our social conduct or our ethical thinking, we are dominated by the relatively small number of persons who understand the mental processes and social patterns of the masses. It is they who pull the wires which control the public mind." - Edward Bernays - Propaganda

    I find the quote above by Edward Bernays to be a perfect synopsis for everything that has come to pass over the last century. The world has become increasingly controlled by an invisible government of greedy Wall Street bankers, shadowy billionaires, immoral big business, crooked politicians, and the military industrial complex, with mammoth media conglomerates, purposefully using propaganda to manipulate and mold the minds of the masses in order to exert power and control over our lives. He wrote those words in 1928, when the only available forms of manipulation were newspapers and radio. Bernays would be ecstatic and delighted with the implements available today used by our corporate fascist state controllers as they deliver the electronic messaging guiding the public mind.

    He never dreamed of television, the internet, social media, and the ability of corporations like Google, in full cooperation with the government, to censor the truth, while feeding misinformation and state sanctioned propaganda to the masses in such an efficient and effective mode. Compelling the masses to worship at the altar of technology, while idolizing the evil men running our largest banks and corporations, has been a prodigious success for the shadowy ruling power and their mass media propaganda agents. Mike Lofgren, former congressional insider and author of The Party Is Over: How Republicans Went Crazy, Democrats Became Useless and the Middle Class Got Shafted, describes these mysterious perfidious men as the Deep State:

    Yes, there is another government concealed behind the one that is visible at either end of Pennsylvania Avenue, a hybrid entity of public and private institutions ruling the country according to consistent patterns in season and out, connected to, but only intermittently controlled by, the visible state whose leaders we choose.

    My analysis of this phenomenon is not an exposé of a secret, conspiratorial cabal; the state within a state is hiding mostly in plain sight, and its operators mainly act in the light of day. Nor can this other government be accurately termed an "establishment."

    All complex societies have an establishment, a social network committed to its own enrichment and perpetuation. In terms of its scope, financial resources and sheer global reach, the American hybrid state, the Deep State, is in a class by itself. That said, it is neither omniscient nor invincible. The institution is not so much sinister (although it has highly sinister aspects) as it is relentlessly well entrenched.

    Far from being invincible, its failures, such as those in Iraq, Afghanistan and Libya, are routine enough that it is only the Deep State's protectiveness towards its higher-ranking personnel that allows them to escape the consequences of their frequent ineptitude. - Mike Lofgren, Anatomy of the Deep State

    The techno-narcissistic American public has been manipulated into falsely believing their iGadgets, Facebook, Twitter, and thousands of Apps have made them smarter, freer and safer. As Goethe proclaimed, the majority of willfully ignorant Americans are hopelessly enslaved, while falsely believing they are free. Our controllers, through relentless propaganda and misinformation pounded into our brains by the government controlled education system and unrelenting messaging by their mass media co-conspirators, have molded the minds and opinions of the vast majority into believing government and mega-corporations are beneficial and indispensable to their well-being.

    The overwhelming majority have been conditioned like rats to believe anything their keepers feed them. In order to keep society running smoothly, with little dissent, thought, opposition or questioning, the Deep State utilizes all the tools at its disposal to manipulate, influence, coerce, bully and bribe the populace into passive submission. They've trained us to love our servitude. The Inner Party sees this as essential to their continued control, power and enrichment, while keeping the Proles impoverished, ignorant, fearful and distracted with bread and circuses.

    http://static.cdn-seekingalpha.com/uploads/2014/2/25/saupload_1984-social-classes.png

    The key weapon in their arsenal of obedience is technology and the mega-corporations that control the flow of information disseminated to the hypnotized mindless masses. The United States has devolved into a society where a few powerful unelected unaccountable men, controlling the levers of government, education, finance, and media are able to formulate the opinions, tastes, beliefs, and fears of the masses through the effective and subtle use of technology. They have tenaciously and unflinchingly fashioned a technology addiction among the masses in order to keep them distracted, entertained and uninterested in thinking, gaining knowledge, or comprehending their roles and responsibilities as citizens in a purportedly democratic republic.

    The mass media, along with their corporate compatriots - Microsoft, Apple, Verizon, AT&T, Comcast, Yahoo, Facebook and Google, gather vast amounts of data, emails, phone calls, texts, internet searches, spending habits, credit information, passwords, videos and private personal information from an agreeable, gullible and trusting populace. Americans have a seemingly infinite capacity for blindly counting on the government and the corporatocracy to use this data in an honorable and ethical manner. But, as Edward Snowden has revealed, the corporate fascist state is collecting every shred of data on every American in a systematic and thorough way. We have voluntarily surrendered our privacy, liberties, and freedoms to mega-corporations like Google and their techno-brethren, who then willingly collaborate with Big Brother NSA and allow unfettered access to this private information.

    The U.S. Constitution along with the First and Fourth Amendments are meaningless to these deceitful entities. Our freedoms have dissipated at the same rate we have adopted the technological "innovations" of Facebook, Twitter, and Google. We are being monitored, scrutinized, tracked and controlled by the technology we have exuberantly purchased from the mega-corporations stripping us of our freedom. Technological "progress" has actually resulted in a colossal regression in freedom, liberty, independence, choice, and intelligent questioning of authority. We having willingly submitted to the google shackles of tyranny in exchange for being entertained and amused by Angry Birds, Words with Friends, facebooking, texting, tweeting, posting selfies and statuses, and linking in.

    "Technological progress has merely provided us with more efficient means for going backwards." - Aldous Huxley - Ends and Means

    google big brother-2

    David versus the Nameless, Faceless Goliath Robot

    "It is difficult to get a man to understand something, when his salary depends on his not understanding it." - Upton Sinclair - I, Candidate for Governor: And How I Got Licked

    My enlightening encounter with the nameless, faceless $52 billion "non-evil doing" behemoth entity known as Google, over the last month, has clarified my understanding of how the invisible governing body of the Deep State uses the power of the all-mighty dollar to suppress dissent and obscure the truth. My inconsequential libertarian minded blog that attracts 15,000 visitors per day has been up and running for the last five years. I started my own blog because I didn't want to deal with ongoing censorship of my articles by Wall Street sellout blogs such as Seeking Alpha, Minyanville, and Financial Sense.

    Their salary/living depended upon them not publishing articles critical of Wall Street and the government. My intention has never been to make a living from my blog. Any donations or incidental advertising revenue allowed me to upgrade my server capacity to handle more visitors. I'm certainly not averse to making money, but the sole purpose of my blog has been to try and open people's eyes to Wall Street criminality, political corruption, media propaganda, and the perilous financial state of our country. Therefore, I was pleasantly surprised when Google approved my website for ads in December.

    I will admit my site has been essentially an un-moderated free for all going back to the very beginning in 2009. I do not believe in censorship or false civility. I attempt to induce anger and outrage with every article and post. These are desperate times and anger is the appropriate reaction. The country is on a burning platform of unsustainable policies and practices which threaten the future of our society. I'm pissed off and I want others to be just as pissed off. The regular commenters are intelligent, critical, opinionated, and not afraid to unload with both barrels on fellow regulars or newbies. The language is often strong and the posting of pictures and images adds to the frat house like atmosphere. Regular contributors include doctors, farmers, engineers, business owners, accountants, teachers, waitresses, students, homemakers, soldiers, spies, and retirees. The wild-west nature of the site is not a secret to anyone who has ventured a peek. I assume Google did a review of the site before approving it for their Adsense program.

    I started running Google ads on my site in early December. My site operated as it always had. The $30 per day in ad revenue was welcome, as it helped defray my server and security expenses. I experience a surge in visitors whenever I publish an article that gets picked up by fellow truth telling alternative media websites like Zero Hedge, 321 Gold, Washington's Blog, Steve Quayle, Monty Pelerin, Doug Ross, Market Oracle, Dollar Collapse, TF Metals and several others. I published an article called The Retail Death Rattle on January 20 which obliterated the false government and mainstream media recovery storyline and skewered the delusional incompetent CEOs of mega-retailers. It struck a nerve as it generated the highest visitor count in history for my site. It was even picked up by Wall Street Journal owned Marketwatch. My articles are highly critical of Wall Street, the Federal Reserve, corrupt Washington politicians and the feckless captured legacy media, but they usually fly under the radar of the ruling class. On January 22 Google disabled my ads for "policy violations". This is the vague non-specific description provided by the non-human policing bot:

    Scraped content

    It's important for a site displaying AdSense to offer significant value to the user by providing unique and relevant content, and not to place ads on auto-generated pages or pages with little to no original content. This may include, but is not limited to:

    · copying portions of text content from other sources

    · websites dedicated to embedded videos from other hosts

    · websites with gibberish content that makes no sense or seems auto-generated

    · templated or pre-generated websites that provide duplicate content to users.

    Sexual content

    Google ads may not be placed on pages with adult or mature content. This includes, but is not limited to, pages with images or videos containing:

    · Strategically covered nudity

    · Sheer or see-through clothing

    · Lewd or provocative poses

    · Close-ups of breasts, buttocks, or crotches

    Over the last five years I have received exactly ZERO complaints from other websites or authors about re-posting their articles, with full attribution and links, on my website. No one can accuse my site of not having unique and relevant content. I have permission to post articles from Zero Hedge, Charles Hugh Smith, Michael Snyder, Jim Kunstler, David Stockman, John Mauldin, Doug Casey, Paul Rosenberg, Fred Reed and dozens of other brilliant truthful journalists detailing our societal decay. Was there some Kate Upton bikini Gifs and provocative Salma Hayak pictures scattered within the 200,000 comments made on the site in the last five years? Guilty as charged. It seems Google reviewers can't see the hypocrisy of running ads to meet young bikini clad Asian girls, while disabling ads because there a few bikini pictures on the website. I suspected my article had drawn the Eye of Sauron in my direction and this was the response.

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    Speaking truth to power during these perilous times has repercussions. But I decided to make a good faith effort to follow their rules.

    I had made almost 15,000 posts over the last five years. Over the next week I scanned the site and archived posts that included articles from mainstream media websites, along with a hundred or so bikini pictures. You never deal with a human being when attempting to satisfy the Google Gestapo. Identical canned appeal denial responses are issued from Google Central with no clarification or effort to help you understand their reasoning.

    Hello,

    Thank you for providing us with additional information about your site. However, after thoroughly reviewing theburningplatform.com and taking your feedback into consideration, we're unable to re-enable ad serving to your site at this time, as your site appears to still be in violation.

    When making changes, please note that the URL mentioned in your policy notification may be just one example and that the same violations may exist on other pages of your website. Appropriate changes must be made across your entire website before ad serving can be enabled on your site again.

    If you'd like to have your site reconsidered for participation in the AdSense program, please review our program policies and make any necessary changes to your webpages.

    We appreciate your cooperation.

    Sincerely,

    The Google AdSense Team

    There must have been some miscommunication within the Google Gestapo, as the ads were re-enabled after one week and my third appeal. A newbie, who didn't get the memo, must have mistakenly activated my ads. Regular commenters and contributors were confused by what they could and couldn't post on the site, as was I. The iron fist of the Google Stasi came down once again within a week, with the identical policy violation notice. I made the assumption that since the site was declared in compliance as of January 29, I only had to address anything posted since that date.

    I had purged the site of any and all risqué pictures, so I knew that wasn't a real issue. I thoroughly reviewed every post made since January 29 and archived or edited them to leave no doubt I was meeting Google's vague guidelines. I continued to have my appeals rejected. I then went back a year and archived hundreds of other posts. By the fourth appeal rejection, I realized I would never meet their standard because it wasn't really about violating Google content policies. It was my libertarian, anti-government, anti-Wall Street, anti-Mega-Corporation, anti-Surveillance State views that were the real issue. They were attempting to make me "not understand" or write about the creeping corporate fascist paradigm overtaking the country by making my Google salary dependent on "not understanding".

    Once I understood this truth, I was set free to provoke and prod the nameless, faceless Google entity and prove beyond a shadow of a doubt their true purpose. Their appeal form allows 1,000 characters for your response. Along with the actions I had taken, I began to question the integrity of the Google apparatchik "reviewer", as it was clear the site was not in violation. I had archived over a thousand posts and tens of thousands of comments. I challenged the man behind the Google curtain to provide me with proof the site was still in violation. I must have struck a nerve, as out of the blue I received a new violation notice.

    Violent or disturbing content

    AdSense publishers are not permitted to place Google ads on pages with violent or disturbing content, including sites with gory text or images.

    Now this was funny. My site focuses on the financial, political, and social decay of our country. It in no way advocates or promotes violence. It has no graphic images or gory videos. If Google is attempting to suppress videos of revolutions occurring in Venezuela, Ukraine, and Syria from being seen by citizens of the world, their credibility is zero. If Google is attempting to suppress videos of police brutality against citizens or the police state locking down an entire city while violating the Fourth Amendment, they prove themselves to be nothing more than a fascist propaganda tool of the State. This violation notice was laughable, but I decided to call their bluff one last time. I spent three days and archived 14,000 out of the 15,000 posts ever made on my site. All that remained were my main articles, published on dozens of other sites with Google ads active, and original content produced by myself or other approved contributors. There was no violent content, scraped content, or sexual content on my website.

    My ninth and final appeal was denied. I then proceeded to write an FU Google post on my website and inform my readers and contributors they were unshackled from the Google Evil Empire of Censorship. I'm in the process of restoring all of the posts I had archived. Some might argue that Google is just exercising their rights under our free market capitalism system. I would argue free market capitalism does not exist today. The unholy alliance of big banks, big corporations, big military and big media has created a state run by the few for the benefit of the few. They use their control of the purse strings to manipulate minds, crush dissent, and censor through bullying and bribery.

    Once I mentally liberated myself from their financial control, I was able to see their game. They essentially wanted me to purge the site of every anti-establishment example of free speech and First Amendment rights I had ever written, in order to kneel before the altar of $$$ in the Church of Google. Google would be perfectly fine if I converted my website into a chat-fest where I discussed the details of the upcoming Kim and Kanye wedding, pondered deep issues regarding the benefits of gay marriage, conducted polls on who The Bachelor will choose to be his betrothed this season, mused about what Hollywood stars will wear at the Academy Awards, and debated who will win the fourteenth season of American Idol. The Google money would flow freely as I contributed to the dumbing down and sedation of the masses. I have chosen not be a Judas that sells out my readers and the American public for 30 pieces of fiat to the Google Pharisees and the American corporate fascist surveillance empire.

    This was not the first time the Deep State attempted to silence my anarchistic viewpoint. On June 5 Edward Snowden, American hero and patriot, released the first of thousands of documents detailing the traitorous actions of the NSA, Obama, Congress, the Judicial branch, and the corporate media. Snowden revealed the government, in cooperation with Google, Verizon, Facebook and a myriad of other technology/media companies, was collecting metadata and conducting mass surveillance of every American in violation of the Fourth Amendment, a clearly illegal form of search and seizure.

    On June 19 I penned an article titled Who Are the Real Traitors? In the article I declared Obama, James Clapper, Dick Cheney, Diane Feinstein, Peter King and a plethora of other politicians, faux journalists, and talking media heads as the real traitors of the American people. The article achieved wide distribution through my usual channels and must have again drawn attention in Mordor on the Potomac. Two days later anyone with McAfee or Norton security were receiving false warnings about a malicious virus on my site. Long time readers in the military informed me the site was now blocked by the Department of Defense as a dangerous website. Other long-time readers informed me their corporations were now blocking access to the site. The site was inundated by denial of service attacks. It slowed to a crawl and was virtually inaccessible. I'm sure it was just a coincidence.

    I was forced to switch server companies and hire an anti-hacking company to protect the site, thereby increasing my cost to run the site by a factor of 10. Even though the companies I hired confirmed there were no malicious viruses on the site, Norton continued to scare Internet Explorer users from reading my site for the next eight months. How the $8 billion Symantec (owns Norton) entity could rationalize this false warning on only $80 billion Microsoft's Internet Explorer, seems suspicious to me. The warning would not appear if you accessed the site with Mozilla Firefox, even if you employed Norton security. Norton makes it virtually impossible to appeal their false danger rating. I'm sure thousands of people were scared away from my website by these unaccountable corporate entities, working on behalf of the all-powerful state. Lofgren's Deep State or Bernays' Invisible Government hate the truth. They despise anyone who attempts to open the eyes of the public to their deception, criminality, and propaganda.

    Google has become a tool and partner of the Deep State. Enrichment of the state within the state is their sole purpose. Google's Don't Be Evil motto, originated when they were a fledgling company in 2000, has become a farce as they have descended into the netherworld as the information police for the ruling despots. They are now a humungous corporation with near monopoly control over the flow of information, searches, emails, and internet advertising. They know more about you and your habits than you do. They attempt to control freedom of speech at the point of a wire transfer. Fall into line or no advertising blood money for you. Not only do they suppress viewpoints through advertising revenue bullying, they manipulate their search engine results to hide the truth from the masses. Google search engines filter, block and bury blog posts that contain content or information it deems incompatible with the message of its corporate fascist co-conspirators. Its oppressive corporate practices on behalf of its evil partners are an abridgment of the freedom of speech, perversion of the truth, and active attempt to mold the minds of the masses.

    (click to enlarge)

    One of the most intelligent and cleverest contributors to my website, Nick (aka Stucky), summed up the evil entity known as Google in this pointed comment on my website:

    There is an Entity out there who knows every search you ever made.

    The Entity knows all about your emails, the content and address.

    The Entity knows what you buy online and how often.

    The Entity is developing software to predict what you will buy next.

    The Entity can now even watch you, and know where you are, and what you are doing.

    The Entity even knows your habits.

    The Entity has enormous resources and stacks of cash.

    The Entity shares your information with Lesser Entities … and also The Big Evil Entity that rules us all.

    The Entity makes the NSA, CIA, FBI, DHS, and their ilk look like Lightweight Chumps.

    The Entity hates you. You are just a means to an end.

    The Entity is building a Profile all about you.

    The Entity will soon know you better than you know yourself.

    Welcome to Google, the most evil Entity on the planet.

    As a society we have fallen asleep at the wheel. We've allowed ourselves to be lulled into complacency, distracted by minutia, mesmerized by technology, turned into consumers by corporations, pacified by financial gurus and Ivy League economists, and fearful of our own shadows. Surveillance, censorship and propaganda are the tools of the oppressive state. Free speech and truthful revelations about the Deep State are a danger in the eyes of our oppressors. Words retain power and can change the hearts and minds of a tyrannized citizenry willing to listen. V's speech to London in the movie V for Vendetta, with slight modification, captures the essence of how Google fits into the evil matrix we inhabit today.

    Because while the truncheon may be used in lieu of conversation, words will always retain their power. Words offer the means to meaning and for those who will listen, the enunciation of truth. And the truth is, there is something terribly wrong with this country, isn't there?

    Cruelty and injustice…intolerance and oppression. And where once you had the freedom to object, to think and speak as you saw fit, you now have censors and systems of surveillance, coercing your conformity and soliciting your submission. How did this happen? Who's to blame? Well certainly there are those who are more responsible than others, and they will be held accountable. But again, truth be told…if you're looking for the guilty, you need only look into a mirror.

    I know why you did it. I know you were afraid. Who wouldn't be? War. Terror. Disease. There were a myriad of problems which conspired to corrupt your reason and rob you of your common sense. Fear got the best of you and in your panic you turned to the government and their banking/corporate patrons. They promised you order. They promised you peace. And all they demanded in return was your silent, obedient consent.

    I choose not to silently and obediently consent to the will of the Deep State. Google will not silence me. We are in the midst of a Fourth Turning and I will try to do my small part in sweeping away the existing social order and trying to replace it with a system that honors and follows the U.S. Constitution. In Part 2 of this expose of evil, I'll provide further proof of Google's hypocrisy, censorship, and willing participation in spying on the American people. I'm beginning to understand the major conflict which will drive this Fourth Turning - The People vs The Corporate Fascist State.

    (click to enlarge)

    WARNING: The National Security Agency is recording and storing this communication as part of its unlawful spying program on all Americans … and people worldwide. The people who created the NSA spying program say this communication - and any responses - can and will be used against the American people at any time in the future should unelected bureaucrats within the government decide to persecute us for political reasons. Private information in digital communications is being shared between Google, Facebook, Verizon and the government. It will be used against you when it suits their purposes.

    Disclosure: I have no positions in any stocks mentioned, and no plans to initiate any positions within the next 72 hours. I wrote this article myself, and it expresses my own opinions. I am not receiving compensation for it. I have no business relationship with any company whose stock is mentioned in this article.

    Feb 25 4:11 PM | Link | Comment!
  • THE BROKEN LIMB & BURST PIPE FALLACY

    "Economics is haunted by more fallacies than any other study known to man. This is no accident. While certain public policies would in the long run benefit everybody, other policies would benefit one group only at the expense of all other groups. The group that would benefit by such policies, having such a direct interest in them, will argue for them plausibly and persistently. It will hire the best buyable minds to devote their whole time to presenting its case. And it will finally either convince the general public that its case is sound, or so befuddle it that clear thinking on the subject becomes next to impossible.

    In addition to these endless pleadings of self-interest, there is a second main factor that spawns new economic fallacies every day. This is the persistent tendency of man to see only the immediate effects of a given policy, or its effects only on a special group, and to neglect to inquire what the long-run effects of that policy will be not only on that special group but on all groups. It is the fallacy of overlooking secondary consequences." - Henry Hazlitt - Economics in One Lesson

    Saturday was the first day since a double shot of snow and ice storms hit the Philadelphia metro area on Monday and Wednesday I had a chance to drive around Montgomery County and witness the devastation firsthand. Over 750,000 homes lost power at the height of the ice storm on Wednesday and over 100,000 remained without power this past weekend. The mainstream media has become such a farce and propaganda machine for vested interests, it is essential to verify with your own eyes everything they report as fact. Their purpose is to entertain the consciously ignorant, exaggerate threats to keep the low IQ multitudes fearful, and function as mouthpieces for the ruling class. Deceitful corporate executives, mendacious government apparatchiks, and oblivious teleprompter reading media talking heads have been utilizing cold weather as an excuse for every poor earnings announcement, horrific employment report, and dreadful decline in retail sales. It certainly has nothing to do with decades of stagnant household income, awful monetary and fiscal policies, or the consequences of Obamacare.

    We have become a delusional state dependent upon fallacies to convince ourselves our foolhardy beliefs, ludicrous economic policies, corrupt captured political system, and preposterously fraudulent financial system are actually based on sound logic and reason. Some fallacies have been perpetrated intentionally by the ruling class to manipulate, sway and deceive the populace, while others have been willfully employed by millions of techno-narcissistic iGadget addicted zombies as a substitute for thinking, reasoning and taking responsibility for the course of our nation.

    You have men who constitute the unseen true ruling power of the country making a conscious and intentional effort to peddle fallacies to the masses in order to manipulate, mold, and corral them in a manner beneficial to the ruling power, financially, politically, and socially. The ruling class has been hugely successful in their capture of the public mind, creating a vast majority of the willfully ignorant who desperately grasp at fallacious concepts, beliefs, and storylines in order to avoid dealing with reality and being accountable for their actions and the actions of their leaders.

    The fallacy being flogged by government drones and the legacy media about companies not hiring new employees because it has been cold and snowy during the winter is beyond absurd, except to someone who lives in the cocoon of Washington D.C. or regurgitates words processed on a teleprompter by paid minions of the ruling class. If you live in the real world, run a business, or manage employees, you understand weather has absolutely nothing to do with your decision to hire an employee. An organization takes weeks or months to hire employees. They don't stop hiring because it snowed on Wednesday or the temperature was below normal. The contention that hiring has been weak for the last two months due to weather is outlandish and based upon flawed logic and warped reasoning. It is so illogical, only an Ivy League economist could believe it.

    The other fallacy being pontificated by retail executives in denial, cheerleaders on CNBC and the rest of the propaganda press is weather is to blame for terrible retail sales over the last quarter. Again, this argument is specious in its conception. The retail executives use weather as an excuse for their failure in execution, hubris in over-expanding, and arrogance in pursuit of quarterly earnings per share and bonuses. CNBC and the rest of the Wall Street media pawns must provide lame fallacies for the corporate fascists regarding our downward economic path or the masses my wake up to reality. Protecting and expanding the wealth of the parasitic oligarch class is the one and only purpose of the corporate media.

    Think about whether cold and snow in the winter will really stop purchases by individuals. If you need a new shirt for work or a pair of sneakers and it snows on Wednesday, you will wait until Saturday to make the purchase. Groceries will be consumed and replenished whether it is cold and snowy, or not. If an appliance or car breaks down, weather will be a non-factor in the new purchase decision. The proliferation of on-line retailing allows everyone to shop from the warmth of their homes. If anything, bad winter weather often spurs stocking up of groceries and the purchase of items needed to contend with winter weather (salt, shovels, coats, hats, gloves). Only an asinine spokes-model bimbo on CNBC could non-questioningly report the press release excuses of retailers. Critical thinking skills and journalistic integrity are non-essential traits among the propaganda mainstream press today.

    Revealing the truth about pitiful employment growth and dreadful retail sales would destroy the fallacy of economic recovery stimulated by the monetary policies of the Federal Reserve and fiscal policies of the Federal government. The ruling class must perpetuate the myth that central bankers pumping $3.2 trillion of debt into the veins Wall Street banks and Obama dumping $6.7 trillion of debt onto the shoulders of future generations in order to cure a cancerous disease created by debt, has revived our economy and cured the disease. The unseen governing class cannot admit their traitorous actions have impoverished the working middle class, destroyed small businesses, depleted senior citizens of their savings, and warped our economic system to such an extent that recovery in now impossible. If the ignorant masses were to become sentient, the ruling class would become lamppost decorations.

    After discovering water pipes at my rental property had burst due to the extreme cold weather and witnessing the widespread damage caused by the mid-week ice storm, I immediately thought how overjoyed my favorite Keynesian, Ivy League, Nobel Prize winning, New York Times scribbler, Paul (destruction is good) Krugman must be. All this destruction and devastation will be a tremendous boost to the economy according to Krugman and his ilk. This intellectually deceitful, morally bankrupt, despicable excuse for a human being spoke these words of wisdom three days after the 9/11 attacks:

    "Ghastly as it may seem to say this, the terror attack - like the original day of infamy, which brought an end to the Great Depression - could even do some economic good. So the direct economic impact of the attacks will probably not be that bad. And there will, potentially, be two favorable effects. First, the driving force behind the economic slowdown has been a plunge in business investment. Now, all of a sudden, we need some new office buildings. As I've already indicated, the destruction isn't big compared with the economy, but rebuilding will generate at least some increase in business spending."

    He had expanded his broken window beliefs to broken buildings, broken nations, and a broken people. You can't keep a cunning Keynesian down when they need to propagate discredited fallacies in order to feed their own ego and promote foolish debt fueled spending by government, consumers and corporations as a solution to all economic ills. It makes no difference to a statist like Krugman that Frederic Bastiat had obliterated the preposterous notion that destruction and the money spent to repair the destruction was a net benefit to society, 164 years ago in his essay - That Which is Seen, and That Which is Not Seen. Bastiat's logic is unassailable. Only the most highly educated Princeton economists don't get it.

    Have you ever witnessed the anger of the good shopkeeper, James B., when his careless son has happened to break a pane of glass? If you have been present at such a scene, you will most assuredly bear witness to the fact that every one of the spectators, were there even thirty of them, by common consent apparently, offered the unfortunate owner this invariable consolation - "It is an ill wind that blows nobody good. Everybody must live, and what would become of the glaziers if panes of glass were never broken?"

    Now, this form of condolence contains an entire theory, which it will be well to show up in this simple case, seeing that it is precisely the same as that which, unhappily, regulates the greater part of our economical institutions.

    Suppose it cost six francs to repair the damage, and you say that the accident brings six francs to the glazier's trade - that it encourages that trade to the amount of six francs - I grant it; I have not a word to say against it; you reason justly. The glazier comes, performs his task, receives his six francs, rubs his hands, and, in his heart, blesses the careless child. All this is that which is seen.

    But if, on the other hand, you come to the conclusion, as is too often the case, that it is a good thing to break windows, that it causes money to circulate, and that the encouragement of industry in general will be the result of it, you will oblige me to call out, "Stop there! Your theory is confined to that which is seen; it takes no account of that which is not seen."

    It is not seen that as our shopkeeper has spent six francs upon one thing, he cannot spend them upon another. It is not seen that if he had not had a window to replace, he would, perhaps, have replaced his old shoes, or added another book to his library. In short, he would have employed his six francs in some way, which this accident has prevented.

    I wonder whether the myopic focus on only immediate impacts and inability of ideologues to understand unintended consequences is premeditated or just erroneous reasoning. The broken window fallacy can now be extended to broken limbs and burst pipes across the Northeast. Huge trees have been toppled, limbs and branches are strewn on the properties of homeowners across the region, homes and businesses have been physically damaged, and power outages wrecked profits at small businesses. Society has gained no benefit whatsoever from the mass destruction wrought by these storms. Thi

    s weather induced ruin exposes GDP calculations as useless and misleading regarding the true economic health of the nation. The hundreds of millions in destruction will not be factored into the GDP calculation, but the spending by homeowners and businesses to remove downed trees, fix broken roofs, replace burst pipes and clean-up debris will be factored positively in the GDP calculation. The inevitable politician response will be increased government spending to repair damage to infrastructure. This will also be additive to GDP. Krugman will get a tingle up his leg.

    CNBC's Cramer & Liesman will rave about the unexpectedly strong GDP in the first quarter as proof the economy is doing great. The fallacy that GDP growth and stock market gains are beneficial to the average American will be flogged by the propaganda press at the behest of the ruling class until the last vestiges of national wealth are confiscated by the oligarchs. In the real world, the destruction caused by the harsh winter weather will not benefit society one iota. GDP will reflect the immediate short-term seen impact of the cleanup and repair of property damage. GDP will ignore the unseen opportunity costs which were lost and the long-term consequences of expenditures made to put property back in the condition in which it started. Destruction does not create profit, except in the Keynesian world of Krugman and his Ivy League educated sycophant cronies.

    There are 2.5 million households in the Philadelphia metro area. There are hundreds of thousands with trees down, pipes frozen, gutters smashed, roofs leaking and electrical infrastructure damaged. An individual homeowner with a couple of large trees down will need to pay $500 to $1,000 for a tree service to remove the debris from their property. Considering the median household income in Montgomery County, PA is $75,000, that is not an insubstantial sum.

    The homeowner did not anticipate this expenditure and will react by not dining out, taking a shorter vacation, not buying that new couch, or not investing in their small business. A landlord who has to repair busted pipes will incur added expense, resulting in less profit. Less profit means less taxes paid to the state and federal government, exacerbating their budget deficits. The landlord will defer replacing that old air conditioner for at least another year. Multiply these scenarios across the entire Northeastern United States and you have the long-term negative financial implications outweighing the short-term boost to GDP.

    The Keynesian fallacy of increased economic activity being beneficial is annihilated by the fact homeowners and business owners are left in the same condition as they were prior to the storms, while the money spent to achieve the same property condition was not spent on other goods and services that would have truly expanded the economy. The fallacious government engineered GDP calculation will portray destruction as an economic boost. Keynesian worshiping economists and government bureaucrats observe this tragedy as only between two parties, the consumer who is forced to repair their property and is denied the pleasure of spending their money on something more enjoyable and the tree service company who experiences a positive impact to their business. They exclude the appliance store, restaurant, or hotel that did not receive the money spent on repairing the property. It is this third unseen party who is left out of the equation. It is this third party that shows the absurdity of believing destruction leads to profit and economic advancement. The national economic output is not increased, but highly educated government drones and Wall Street captured economists will point to GDP and disseminate the fallacy.

    This leads us to government in general and the fallacy that government spending, government borrowing, and government programs are beneficial to society and the economy. Legalized plunder of the populace through income taxes, real estate taxes, sales taxes, gasoline taxes, cigarette taxes, license fees, sewer fees, tolls, and a myriad of other ass raping techniques is used to subsidize crony capitalist special interests, the military industrial complex, faux wars on poverty, drugs and terror, a failed public education system, vote buying entitlement programs, and a tax code written to benefit those who pay the biggest bribes to the corrupt politicians slithering around the halls of congress.

    Government is a criminal enterprise designed to take from the weak and powerless while benefitting the connected and powerful. The government extracts the earnings of citizens and businesses at the point of a gun and redistributes those funds to special interests; funding boondoggles, wars of choice, foreign dictators, and the corporate and banking interests who control the puppet strings of Washington politicians. State organized and legal plunder designed to enrich everyone at the expense of everyone else is the delusional fallacy permeating our cultural mindset today.

    President Obama declared my region a disaster area, allowing for government funds to supposedly help in the cleanup efforts. Again, the fallacy of government intervention benefiting society is unquestioned by the ignorant masses. Local and State governments are required by law to balance their budgets. The never ending progression of storms and record cold temperatures has already blown the winter storm budgets of transportation departments across the region. Gaping potholes are swallowing vehicles and will need to be repaired.

    Government spokespersons and politicians tell the public not to worry. The government will come to the rescue, even when the funds officially run out. They won't react the way a family would react to a budget overage, by cutting spending in another area. We have had mild winters in the recent past when the winter road budgets were far under. Did the government set aside this surplus for winters like the one we are currently experiencing? Of course not - they spent it on some other boondoggle program or useless shovel ready bridge to nowhere. Government politicians and their lackeys do not look beyond their 2 year election cycle.

    The government budget overages due to winter storms will show up in the GDP calculation as a positive impact. A snowplow pushing snow to the side of the road and a crew filing a pothole has put the roadway back into the condition it was prior to the bad weather. The roadway is exactly the same. The money spent could have been used to pay down debt, fund the government pension shortfalls which will overwhelm taxpayers in the foreseeable future, or be given back to citizens to spend as they choose. There has been no net benefit to society.

    No government spending provides a net benefit to society. Every government program, law, regulation, subsidy, tax or fee gives rise to a series of effects. The immediate seen effect may be favorable in the eyes of myopic politicians and an ignorant populace, but most government intervention in our lives proves to be fatal and unsustainable in the long-term. Whatever short-term benefits might accrue is far outweighed by the long-term negative implications on future generations. All government expenditures are foisted upon the public either through increased taxation or state created surreptitious inflation.

    We have a country built on a Himalayan mountain of fallacies. We are a short-term oriented people who only care about our present situation, giving no thought about long-term consequences of our policies, programs, laws or actions. Critical thinking skills, reasoning abilities, and a basic understanding of mathematical concepts appear to be beyond our grasp. We'd rather believe falsehoods than deal with the harsh lessons of reality. We choose to experience the severe penalties of burying our heads in the sand over using our God given ability to think and foresee the future consequences of our irrational choices. We suffer from the ultimately fatal disease of ignorance, as described by Bastiat.

    This explains the fatally grievous condition of mankind. Ignorance surrounds its cradle: then its actions are determined by their first consequences, the only ones which, in its first stage, it can see. It is only in the long run that it learns to take account of the others. It has to learn this lesson from two very different masters - experience and foresight. Experience teaches effectually, but brutally. It makes us acquainted with all the effects of an action, by causing us to feel them; and we cannot fail to finish by knowing that fire burns, if we have burned ourselves. For this rough teacher, I should like, if possible, to substitute a more gentle one. I mean Foresight.

    It's a big country and one fallacy doesn't fit all. Some fallacies are committed purposefully by evil men with evil intent. The Wall Street financial elite, big corporations, big media and their politician puppets fall into this category. Other fallacies are executed by people whose salary depends upon the fallacies being believed by the masses. Middle level bankers, managers, journalists, and bureaucrats fall into this category. And lastly you have the willfully ignorant masses who would rather believe fallacies than look up from their iGadgets, Facebook, and Twitter and think. The thing about fallacies is they eventually are buried under an avalanche of reality. If you listen closely you can hear the rumble of snow beginning to give way on the mountaintop. Fallacies are about to be crushed and swept away by the real world of consequences.

    "Wall Street had been doing business with pieces of paper; and now someone asked for a dollar, and it was discovered that the dollar had been mislaid. It was an experience for which the captains of industry were not entirely prepared; they had forgotten the public. It was like some great convulsion of nature, which made mockery of all the powers of men, and left the beholder dazed and terrified. In Wall Street men stood as if in a valley, and saw far above them the starting of an avalanche; they stood fascinated with horror, and watched it gathering headway; saw the clouds of dust rising up, and heard the roar of it swelling, and realized it was only a matter of time before it swept them to their destruction…

    But it is difficult to get a man to understand something when his salary depends upon him not understanding it."

    Upton Sinclair - The Moneychangers

    Disclosure: I have no positions in any stocks mentioned, and no plans to initiate any positions within the next 72 hours. I wrote this article myself, and it expresses my own opinions. I am not receiving compensation for it. I have no business relationship with any company whose stock is mentioned in this article.

    Tags: economy
    Feb 12 11:30 AM | Link | 1 Comment
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