Free - Beyond Collapse

Tuesday, May 20, 2014

Why They Hate Peace

 A standing military force, with an overgrown Executive will not long be safe companions to liberty. The means of defence against foreign danger have been always the instruments of tyranny at home. -James Madison

Guest Post By Ron Paul

 [Editor’s Note: This is a selection from the last chapter of Ron Paul’s A Foreign Policy of Freedom.]

The most succinct statement about how governments get their people to support war came from Hermann Goering at the Nuremberg trials after World War II:
Why of course the people don’t want war. Why should some poor slob on a farm want to risk his life in a war when the best he can get out of it is to come back to his farm in one piece? Naturally, the common people don’t want war; neither in Russia, nor in England, nor for that matter in Germany. That is understood. But, after all, it is the leaders of the country who determine the policy and it is always a simple matter to drag the people along, whether it is a democracy, or a fascist dictatorship, or a parliament, or a communist dictatorship. Voice or no voice, the people can always be brought to the bidding of the leaders. All you have to do is tell them they are being attacked, and denounce the peacemakers for lack of patriotism and exposing the country to danger. It works the same in any country.
It is rather frightening that a convicted Nazi war criminal latched onto an eternal truth!
It should be harder to promote war, especially when there are so many regrets in the end. In the last 60 years, the American people have had little say over decisions to wage war. We have allowed a succession of presidents and the United Nations to decide when and if we go to war, without an express congressional declaration as the Constitution mandates.

Since 1945, our country has been involved in over 70 active or covert foreign engagements. On numerous occasions we have provided weapons and funds to both sides in a conflict. It is not unusual for our so-called allies to turn on us and use these weapons against American troops. In recent decades we have been both allies and enemies of Saddam Hussein, Osama bin Laden, and the Islamists in Iran. And where has it gotten us? The endless costs resulting from our foolish policies, in human lives, injuries, tax dollars, inflation, and deficits, will burden generations to come. For civilization to advance, we must reduce the number of wars fought. Two conditions must be met if we hope to achieve this.

First, all military (and covert paramilitary) personnel worldwide must refuse to initiate offensive wars beyond their borders. This must become a matter of personal honor for every individual. Switzerland is an example of a nation that stands strongly prepared to defend herself, yet refuses to send troops abroad looking for trouble.

Second, the true nature of war must be laid bare, and the glorification must end. Instead of promoting war heroes with parades and medals for wars not fought in the true defense of our country, we should more honestly contemplate the real results of war: death, destruction, horrible wounds, civilian casualties, economic costs, and the loss of liberty at home.

The neoconservative belief that war is inherently patriotic, beneficial, manly, and necessary for human progress must be debunked. These war promoters never send themselves or their own children off to fight.
Some believe economic sanctions and blockades are acceptable alternatives to invasion and occupation. But these too are acts of war, and those on the receiving end rarely capitulate to the pressure. More likely they remain bitter enemies, and resort to terrorism when unable to confront us in a conventional military fashion.
Inflation, sanctions, and military threats all distort international trade and hurt average people in all countries involved, while usually not really hurting the targeted dictators themselves. Our bellicose approach encourages protectionism, authoritarianism, militant nationalism, and go-it-alone isolationism. Our government preaches free trade and commerce, yet condemns those who want any restraints on the use of our military worldwide. We refuse to see how isolated we have become. Our loyal allies are few, and while the UN does our bidding only when we buy the votes we need, our enemies multiply. A billion Muslims around the world now see the US as a pariah.

Our military is more often used to protect private capital overseas, such as oil and natural resources, than it is to protect our own borders. Protecting ourselves from real outside threats is no longer the focus of defense policy, as globalists become more influential inside and outside our government.
The weapons industry never actually advocates killing to enhance its profits, but a policy of endless war and eternal enemies benefits it greatly. Some advocate cold war strategies, like those used against the Soviets, against the unnamed “terrorists.” It’s good for business!
Many neoconservatives are not bashful about this:
Thus, paradoxically, peace increases our peril, by making discipline less urgent, encouraging some of our worst instincts, and depriving us of some of our best leaders. The great Prussian general Helmuth von Moltke knew whereof he spoke when he wrote a friend, “Everlasting peace is a dream, not even a pleasant one; war is a necessary part of God’s arrangement of the world. … Without war the world would deteriorate into materialism.” As usual, Machiavelli dots his i’s and crosses the t’s: it’s not just that peace undermines discipline and thereby gives the destructive vices greater sway. If we actually achieved peace, “Indolence would either make (the state) effeminate or shatter her unity; and two things together, or each by itself, would be the cause of her ruin …” This is Machiavelli’s variation on a theme by Mitterrand: the absence of movement is the beginning of defeat. (Michael Ledeen, Machiavelli on Modern Leadership)
Those like Ledeen who approvingly believe in “perpetual struggle” generally are globalists, uninterested in national sovereignty and borders. True national defense is of little concern to them. That’s why military bases are closed in the United States regardless of their strategic value, while several new bases are built in the Persian Gulf, even though they provoke our enemies to declare jihad against us. The new Cold War justifies everything.

War, and the threat of war, are big government’s best friend. Liberals support big government social programs, and conservatives support big government war policies, thus satisfying two major special interest groups. And when push comes to shove, the two groups cooperate and support big government across the board — always at the expense of personal liberty. Both sides pay lip service to freedom, but neither stands against the welfare/warfare state and its promises of unlimited entitlements and endless war.

Monday, May 19, 2014

Aren’t We Simply Witnessing Too Little Too Late In America?

Guest Post by Susan Boskey

How in the world did we get here? Families struggle with the joblessness and debt left by the corporate takeover of life. They are bombarded with a mean-spirited right/left emotional tone in public debate which gets nastier by the day. All the while, “The Powers That Be” (TPTB) are full-speed ahead inventing new ways to expand laws to micro-manage the lives of everyday Americans. Who knew?

Kick the bums out! Elect leaders who care! Reform the system! Get money out of election campaigns! Protest! Amend the Constitution to get rid of human privileges by corporations! Write your Congressman! And don’t forget to vote!

But really, aren’t we simply witnessing too little too late?

The quest for political reform fails to address the source of the problem. The real culprit is the way we humans think and behave and how our behavior so often falls to the lowest common denominator of what we can get away with. The “do no harm” adage of the Golden Rule as what works in human relations holds little sway in the 21st century digital world. Instead, the mantra which rules, spoken mostly in hushed tones, goes something like, “Get as much as you can any way you can.”

Certainly we find unspeakably corrupt behavior played out in politics and business, but lo and behold, such deceitful behavior begins squarely with the lowly individual. Name-calling, lying, cheating, bullying, stealing, back-biting, character assassination and the joy of dominating others, describes a few of the choices people make at home, at work and, of course, in politics. Considered practically normal, this style of relating is the basic personal crisis of conscience justified by, “but everyone is doing it!”

The Invisible Power of Context
Americans are culturally conditioned to believe that their country is the foundation of freedom and truth and they have neither knowledge nor interest to fact-check what their leaders and media tell them. - Lawrence Davidson, professor of history, West Chester University in Pennsylvania, 2014
A country’s political and financial “container,” or context, has the power to shape and define the scope of possibilities for its people. However, we lose sight of this fact and instead focus on the problems caused by governing systems. For example, American education teaches a version of American history that consistently overlooks and under-reports certain events, particularly those leading up to and surrounding the creation of the Constitution of the United States and the U.S. Government. It was by these events that the direction of the country was forever changed in ways that departed greatly from what we have been led to believe. A universal principle is at work here: any context, political or otherwise, has overarching influence on the content within it, e.g. as does the sun on every aspect of its solar system.

In this essay, I hope to shed light on a couple of the missing pieces to the puzzle of a pivotal moment in American history. Perhaps the reader will take away a bigger picture and begin to consider how what happened then laid the foundation for the financial, political, social and personal ills faced by the 99% today, and also discover the hidden-in-plain-view remedy available for the taking.

The First Form of Governance in America

The story of America began with British colonists-turned-Americans and their individual rights and self-governance even as the American Revolution was underway. Setting the stage was the Declaration of Independence, ratified on July 4, 1776, and the first federal constitution, the Articles of Confederation and Perpetual Union, drafted mid-1776 (hereafter called the Articles or first constitution). John Dickinson of Pennsylvania penned the combined input of the delegates from each of the thirteen colonies that convened to create the Articles, America’s first governing document. It was adopted November 1777, and ratified in 1781 by all thirteen fledgling states.

In effect, this first constitution elevated the common man to the same status as that of a sovereign king, i.e. a self-governing “free inhabitant.” Each of the several states functioned autonomously within a purely voluntary and decentralized federal system. English Common Law, based on God-given “natural” law, was inherited from England as the law of the land. Thomas Jefferson, in the Declaration of Independence, discerned the existence of a new American jurisdiction and the lack of authority British King George III had over it while referring to the first American constitution:
He has combined with others to subject us to a jurisdiction foreign to our constitution, and unacknowledged by our laws; giving his Assent to their Acts of pretended Legislation:
The stated purpose of the new, loosely-formed Union was to fend together against foreign invasion. United under the Articles, free inhabitants of the several states were able to protect themselves in ways not otherwise possible separately. The period of 1777 to 1789 was a time of general prosperity in America as the earliest Americans enjoyed benefits of the confederation without obligation of federal citizenship.
The said States hereby severally enter into a firm league of friendship with each other, for their common defense, the security of their liberties, and their mutual and general welfare, binding themselves to assist each other, against all force offered to, or attacks made upon them, or any of them, on account of religion, sovereignty, trade, or any other pretense whatever. —“The Articles of Confederation and Perpetual Union,” 1781
Not long after the 1781 ratification of the Articles, federal leaders agreed on what they saw as the many weaknesses inherent to the Articles since provisions for a supreme court, a commerce clause, the regulation of foreign trade, a standing army and the enforcement of taxation, had not been included. Over the years historians agreed the Articles were a failure, an opinion few would ever challenge.

In 1787 the Congress of the Confederation authorized that the Philadelphia Constitutional Convention could be held, however, with a resolution of specific, clearly stated limitations, “for the sole and express purpose of revising the Articles of Confederation and reporting to Congress and the several legislatures.”

As they say, the rest is history. It was at the Philadelphia Constitutional Convention that the 1787 Constitution of the United States came into existence. Interestingly, most Americans believe that it was with this second constitution that the country began. Ask anyone, and most people will tell you they had little to no idea about the years of American history prior to 1787.

The Articles have been listed as one of the four Organic Laws (founding laws) of the United States of America, along with the Declaration of the United States of America, 1776, the Northwest Ordinance, 1787 and the Constitution of the United States 1787, listed at the beginning of the U.S. Code (official compilation of all U.S. laws).

The Second Form of Governance in America

As people know from experience there are two sides to any story. Yet few learn the other side of the story about America’s beginnings. The other side of the American story reveals how to many Americans at that time, the idea of the 1787 Constitution of the United States was less about “a more perfect union…of, by and for the people” and more about implementing the Federalist plan to concentrate federal power in the hands of a few.

Free inhabitants, led by the likes of Patrick Henry, feared exactly this, a centralized system reminiscent of a form of governance like that of the British Empire they had so recently escaped. Behind the cover of patriotism, it turns out that their fears were well-founded, The Constitution of 1787 and the U.S. Government it established was nothing less than a bloodless coup of the original American jurisdiction and way of life by a small group of powerful businessmen.

The short version of the coup is that at the Philadelphia Constitutional Convention the Framers of the 1787 Constitution ignored the Congress of the Confederation’s resolution allowing only revisions to the Articles. Instead, they created an entirely new (unauthorized) second constitution and in 1789 proclaimed it ratified, though by only nine states and not the thirteen, as required by the Articles. On their own terms and by their own authority, the Framers created an illegitimate constitution and instituted a U.S. Government of manmade statutory law.

The creation of this second constitution and its government slipped in under the radar of most free inhabitants because they did not have the higher education necessary (as did the Framers) to figure out what had just happened. Many believed what the Federalist Papers told them; they would be recipients of a “more perfect union” because “all power of government was with the people.”

Yet for Patrick Henry and his cohorts, the incremental erosion of freedoms and liberties upon the establishment of the new U.S. Government did not go unnoticed. Essentially, these were the structural shifts from English Common Law to manmade statutory law, and from decentralized self-governance of “do no harm” to a centralized government of compelled performance (force). Autocratic government representation reverted back to serving the interests of an elite tyranny of the minority, the wealthy landowners.

Fast forward to today and the many statutory laws and regulations such as the Patriot Act and the National Defense Authorization Act (NDAA) legalizing indefinite detention of U.S. Citizens while denying them a trial by jury. By written law, U.S. Citizens have become potential enemy combatants or domestic terrorists, i.e. enemies of the state. Who benefits?

Herein is the overarching national myth for those with ears to hear: the myth is that we live in a nation of, by, and for the people. The second constitution marked a turning point backward, not forward, for the American people because the model for the U.S. Government used by the Framers was the British Monarchy, a fact well-documented in the notes of delegates attending the Philadelphia Constitutional Convention. Rule by a few, defined as oligarchy, differs only slightly from rule by a monarchy. Oligarchy (olig-archy) offers a handful of additional rulers beyond one king (mon - archy). The late comedian Bill Hicks described it this way, “You are free to do as we tell you.”

The Good News of Territorial Jurisdiction

As mentioned above, the body of law recognized by the first constitution was English Common Law, also known as unwritten law. Whereas under the second constitution the body of law recognized was statutory law, also known as written law. A statute is written by a state or federal authority. A characteristic of all written laws is that they must identify the boundaries (physical borders) of the land it owns, within which live the people to whom (and only to whom) its laws apply, also known as territorial jurisdiction.

While the Supremacy Clause of the second constitution declares it to be “the supreme law of the land,” former attorney and law researcher Dr. Eduardo Rivera says, not so fast. He asserts that the claim of supremacy is limited to the lands within the United States territorial jurisdiction. Therefore, statutory law of the U.S. Government applies exclusively to Americans living on federally-owned lands.

In 1807, Supreme Court Justice John Marshall delivered the death blow to the authority of English Common Law in the U.S. court system. In the decision, Ex parte Bollman and Swartwout 4 Cranch 75, he stated that written law (i.e. statutory law) was the exclusive law of the United States courts. His decision confirmed that a jurisdiction is defined by written law and “cannot transcend that jurisdiction.” A common law and statutory law system could exist simultaneously as different territorial jurisdictions.
Courts which originate in the common law possess a jurisdiction which must be regulated by their common law, until some statute shall change their established principles; but courts which are created by written law, and whose jurisdiction is defined by written law, cannot transcend that jurisdiction. The reasoning from the bar, in relation to it, may be answered by the single observation, that for the meaning of the term habeas corpus, resort may unquestionably be had to the common law; but the power to award the writ by any of the courts of the United States, must be given by written law.Ex parte Bollman and Swartwout 4 Cranch 75 (emphasis added)
It has historically been well-established that King George III ceded his thirteen colonies to the new United States of America. Less well-known is that with the second constitution, lands that had been owned by the temporary government of the Northwest Ordinance were transferred in ownership to the newly formed United States/U.S. Government in 1789. Americans living within the borders of the Northwest Territory were, therefore, the (only) Americans subject to the statutory law of the new U.S. Government. Otherwise, the free inhabitants of the thirteen original states remained under the territorial jurisdiction of the first constitution and English Common Law by which they had been created.

What makes this period in American history so significant today? Since the Articles were never legally repealed (in writing), they not only remain valid per the Organic Laws above mentioned, but also as the governing document for current-day free inhabitants NOT living on federally-owned land. It is no surprise we were never told.

Why should you care about any of this? There’s a maxim in law that says, “Things that are different are not the same.” Apples are not oranges, right?

Apples: first constitution/decentralized several states/voluntary federal participation/ English Common Law/conscience/God-given rights

Oranges: second constitution/centralized federal government/compelled performance (force)/statutory law/commerce/manmade legislated rights (privileges)

Two totally different territorial jurisdictions exist simultaneously in America today. What Jefferson said in the Declaration of Independence about King George III being unable to subject the new Americans to a foreign jurisdiction reverberates today with a U.S. Government and its “Acts of pretended Legislation,” meaning those of a foreign jurisdiction that actually has succeeded in subjecting free inhabitants to laws that do not apply to them.
He has combined with others to subject us to a jurisdiction foreign to our constitution, and unacknowledged by our laws; giving his Assent to their Acts of pretended Legislation.
Federally-Owned Lands

Federal land ownership has changed and expanded beyond the time when it was only the land inside the Northwest Territory that was federally owned. Now “the Federal Zone” is a force to be reckoned with. A government document, “Congressional Research Service: Federal Land Ownership: Overview and Data 2012” reports, “The federal government owns roughly 635-640 million acres, 28% of the 2.27 billion acres of land in the United States.” Including:
  1. The District of Columbia
  2. Federal Zones within States and Counties and lands of the Bureau of Land Management 
  3. Territories of the United States 
  4. U.S. and Overseas Military Bases  
  5. Foreign Embassies, Veteran’s Hospitals and U.S. Post Offices 
  6. U.S. Coastal Waters
  7. National Parks
  8. Most U.S. Airport Property
You Can’t Get There from Here

The number of Americans who agree that the federal system is broken and cannot be fixed is growing despite those who keep trying. A centralized U.S. Government of statutory law is largely a commercial system governed by the Uniform Commercial Code (UCC). Given the structural design and operating principles of consolidation and centralization of such a system, power thereby defaults into the hands of a few. While these principles of an overarching commercial system remain firmly intact, there can be no possibility for genuine reform. It is structurally impossible.

Libido dominante, the lust for power, coined 2000 years ago to describe the founder of the Roman Empire, Augustus Caesar, is still what drives people, and especially in a system where so much of life (including people and nature) has been commoditized. The lust for power, no matter how you slice it, unleashes the worst of human behavior that affects people and places. Individually we neglect to look in the mirror, admit culpability as imperfect creatures, and commit to making changes in the only way change can begin and take root – with ourselves. When enough of us, from “authorities” to celebrities and children, voluntarily replace self-interest with conscience as our operating principle and reclaim the willingness to “do the right thing” in any situation, only then can something collectively amazing happen for America.
It is said that power corrupts, but actually it's more true that power attracts the corruptible. The sane are usually attracted by other things than power.  - David Brin, author
Free-inhabitant Americans today have unwittingly become the beneficiaries of the lost authority of the Articles. Given the continued validity of this governing document, individuals, families and organizations can set out to reconfigure their relationship with a foreign jurisdiction of U.S. Government statutory laws that do not apply to them. In order for a renaissance of individual freedoms and liberties to take hold and be sustained, it will be because the first constitution and all it stands for has again had life breathed into it.

Please do your own research to confirm the information I have shared in this essay. May this, the other side of the American story, inspire and encourage you in ways that make a difference. Thank you for your kind attention.

Susan Boskey, alternative financial consultant, thinker, freelance researcher and writer, author of the book, The Quality Life Plan®: 7 Steps to Uncommon Financial Security and was instrumental in bringing to market the book, Beyond the National Myth: waking up in the land of the free.

Friday, May 16, 2014

Are Russia and China About To Announce The End Of The US Dollar Era?

Guest Post by Jeff Berwick

Countries all over the world are meeting for a purpose that concerns you greatly, whether or not you're American: disuse of the US dollar.

Since the outbreak of the Ukraine crisis the end of the US dollar seems closer than ever. In move-after-move, Russia and China have become closer allies. There are numerous examples of this. For brevity's sake, two recent examples catch the eye. Gazprom issued bonds in the Chinese Yuan and Russia and China also signed a gas deal.  There are many more examples. 40 central banks have even placed bets on the yuan as the future reserve currency.

Until 2014 tales of dollar collapse seemed to be for conspiracy nuts, as geopolitics only faintly reflected this seeming reality. This year, that all has changed. It seems nation-states the world over are making moves towards a post-US Dollar world. It is not a matter of "if," but "when," and if you don't understand this coming-to-pass you will be in for quite the shock...and awe.

Once Russia, along with numerous allies, makes the fateful move, you can be sure many nations will follow. They already are trying to do so. Why? Because the US is the most destructive force on the planet, and its Achilles Heel is its "exorbitant privilege" known as the US dollar by most, and the Federal Reserve Note by those "in the know."

This will spell hyperinflation, social chaos, civil war, among other dislocations. Think this is hyperbole? It's not. To know that all one needs to do is look at the history of socialist banana republics...and then imagine something much, much worse. Why much worse? Because none of those banana republics were issuer of the world's reserve currency. The US doesn't produce a thing except the US dollar which are extremely easy to print as one man in Canada proved. He printed millions of dollars with a simple operation and circulated them. Moreover, Canada chose not to extradite him so he is a free man.

And so major nation-states are joining together to move beyond the dollar system. A "de-dollarized" world, as it is called in Russia, will change the lives of millions of Americans.


According to Voice of Russia, the Russian Ministry of Finance is looking to significantly increase the role of the Russian ruble in export operations while reducing the share of dollar-denominated transactions. The Russian banking sector, believe many, is "ready to handle the increased number of ruble-denominated transactions".

The Prime news agency reported that, on April 24th, the government organized a special meeting dedicated to finding a solution for getting rid of the US dollar in Russian export operations. Top level experts from banks, government and the energy sector came together as a number of proposals were put forth as a response for American sanctions against Russia.

This "de-dollarization meeting" was chaired by First Deputy Prime Minister of the Russian Federation Igor Shuvalov, demonstrating how serious Moscow is when it comes to moving beyond the dollar.

A subsequent meeting, chaired by Deputy Finance Minister Alexey Moiseev, reviewed how "the amount of ruble-denominated contracts will be increased." According to Moiseev, none of the experts and bank representatives polled found problems with the government's plan to increase the share of ruble payments.

The dollar has been in an elongated freefall, of course, since the invocation of the Federal Reserve and the income tax act in 1913.

But what little remains appears to be hanging by a thread.


Russia wouldn't be so bold if it didn't have support. Other nations want to engage in a de-dollarization of the world. Both China and Iran, for instance, have been vocal about their interest in moving forward with such a plan. Many other leaders have expressed such interest, only to meet Washington's notorious bullets and eternity.

Vladimir Putin is scheduled to visit Beijing on May 20th and speculation suggests that gas and oil contracts will be signed between Russia and China and denominated in rubles and yuan, not dollars.
In just one week, we could be living in a significantly different world.

The West is out of control, with russophobes in control of US foreign policy. This means the US will antagonize Russia and other nations. This will only quicken the abandonment of the US dollar by Russia, China and the world.

The world is setting up the financial and economic infrastructure to simply ignore the United States entirely. What can the US do about it? Bomb more countries. But I am not so sure that is entirely possible for the US like it was just one decade ago. Humanity has awoken and already one war (Syria) was stopped by public outrage. There will be more such wars stopped by popular opposition.

The US's compromised position means one thing: China and Russia will make their moves, playing chess while Obama plays checkers.
  • China called for a new reserve currency in 2013.
  • Japan and India signed a currency dealing linking their currencies in 2011.
  • Gulf Arabs are planning – alongside China, Russia, Japan and France – to end dollar dealings for oil, using instead a basket of currencies including the Japanese yen and Chinese yuan, the euro, gold and a new, unified currency planned for nations in the Gulf Co-operation Council, including Saudi Arabia, Abu Dhabi, Kuwait and Qatar. 

We are on the cusp of a massive paradigm shift in the global monetary system and hardly anyone is aware of it.  Businessmen in the US are making plans and expending capital as though we are in a recovery.  Americans continue to spend money and save little with the same expectations.  And investors continue to invest as though everything is perfectly fine. They have difficulty conceptualizing the truth about the US economy, which is that it is as mired in debt as it possibly could be. The US is in so much debt that the numbers are mind-expanding for humanity.

Trillions of dollars in capital will be lost due to this and will enter the Western world into something that may be written about for centuries as one of the darkest periods in human history and labelled the Great Collapse.  And yet not one in a hundred in the US are even aware of it nor even think it is possible.

Those who are aware, however, and who have internationalized their assets and have the great majority of them in hard assets such as precious metals (also internationalized - find out how to do that here) outside of the financial system stand the best chance to survive the coming changes.
Never before has it been more important to turn off your television, do your own research and take control of your financial affairs.

A lot will be happening and, of course, we here at The Dollar Vigilante will be covering it all in real time. 

Join the discussion at The Dollar Vigilante.

Anarcho-Capitalist. Libertarian. Freedom fighter against mankind’s two biggest enemies, the State and the Central Banks. Jeff Berwick is the founder of The Dollar Vigilante, CEO of TDV Media & Services and host of the popular video podcast, Anarchast. Jeff is a prominent speaker at many of the world’s freedom, investment and gold conferences as well as regularly in the media including CNBC, CNN and Fox Business.

If You Are Doing Nothing Wrong You Have PLENTY to Fear – 30 Examples

Guest Post By Doug Newman

Sometimes I just want to pimp slap people.
Last summer, I was at dinner during a sales convention. The conversation didn’t get political until someone mentioned the NSA.
There is one in every crowd. Someone piped up and said, “They can spy on me all they want. I am not doing anything wrong.”
They sang this song in Germany in 1933. And they sang it with unprecedented gusto in the months following 9/11, all in the name of  “security” and “keeping us safe”.


We were at the MGM Grand in Las Vegas, the world’s second largest hotel. Nothing in the post-9/11 “national security” apparatus would prevent a terrorist from walking in, setting off a bomb, and killing hundreds or even thousands of people.
The more important questions are: How do you know you are doing nothing that could be construed as wrong by some state functionary? How do you know you are not breaking some law somewhere? And why are you so implicitly trusting that your government would never do anything evil with the information it has collected on you?
This is not purely an academic matter. The practical implications are profound.
I give you several examples.

1. Niakea Williams went to her son’s St. Louis-area elementary school one day to pick up her son, who has Asperger’s. The school was put on lockdown and Mrs. Williams was escorted out in handcuffs.

2. Adrionna Harris was almost expelled from her middle school in Virginia Beach after taking a razor blade away from a fellow student who was trying to harm himself.

3. Read what Houston police did to this man who gave 75 cents to a homeless person.

4. A little known Denver parking ordinance can get you a $25 fine even if you haven’t exceeded the two-hour limit.

5. Police in Iowa City, Iowa, seized $50,000 from this couple without charging them with a crime.
alberto willmoore
6. Alberto Willmore lost his teaching job in Manhattan over a totally bogus marijuana arrest. Even though he was never convicted of anything, he was unable to get his job back.

7. Norman Gurley was arrested in Lorain County, Ohio, because a compartment in his car could have been used to transport drugs.

8. Los Angeles County sheriff’s deputies shot and killed 80-year-old Eugene Mallory in his own bed during a meth raid. No meth, or any other illegal drugs, was discovered.

9. Paul Valin contacted police to report that he found a backpack full of what he believed to be meth-making equipment 15 miles from his home near Des Moines. As a result, the DEA placed his house on its list of meth labs.
Ryan Holle

Ryan Holle

10. Ryan Holle of Pensacola, Florida, lent his roommate his car on night in 2004. As a result, Holle is currently serving a life sentence without possibility of parole for pre-meditated murder.

11. New York police seized Gerald Bryan’s cash in a nighttime raid in 2012. Even though Bryan was cleared of any wrongdoing, the stolen cash was deposited in the NYPD pension fund.

12. Robert Duncan is currently serving two years in a California prison, even though the business in which he worked was legal in California.

13. Jordan Wiser spent 13 days in jail after Jefferson, Ohio, police found a pocketknife during a warrantless search of his car.

14. During a school lockdown in Clarksville, Tennessee, David Duren-Sanner gave police permission to search his car as he had “nothing to hide”. Police found a fishing knife. Duren-Sanner, who previously had never been to the principal’s office, was suspended for 10 days and then sent to an alternative school for 90 days.

15. Look what happened to these parents in Napa, California, even though the medical marijuana prescriptions they had were completely legal.
Eileen and Brandon Bower.

Eileen and Brandon Bower

16. Eileen Ann Bower of suburban Pittsburgh had her newborn child taken from her for 75 days because of a false positive drug test.

17. Jerry Hartfield of Bay City, Texas, has spent the majority of his life in prison, even though his conviction was overturned in 1980.

18. Jason Dewing of update New York was found guilty of violating a law that did not exist.

19. Don Miller of Waldron, Indiana, had his home raided by FBI agents who seized hundreds of cultural artifacts from around the world. Miller was neither arrested nor charged with anything.
don millers house
Fedcoats raid Don Miller’s house.

20. This San Diego couple was pepper-sprayed and tasered by police who had erroneously identified their vehicle after being stolen.

21. The good news is that Brian Aitken of Mount Laurel, New Jersey, had his prison sentence commuted. The bad news is that he was originally sentenced to seven years behind bars for possessing two legally purchased guns.

22. This special needs student in McDonald, Pennsylvania, was charged with felony wiretapping for recording other students who were bullying him mercilessly.
Abner Schoenwetter
Abner Schoenwetter

23. Abner Schoenwetter of Miami served over six years in prison for – you can’t make this stuff up – violating Honduran fisheries law.

24. Read what happened to John Filippidis of Hudson, Florida, when he was pulled over by state police while driving unarmed through Maryland.

25. In a case of mistaken identity, Lewis James of Durham, North Carolina, “was handcuffed and later jailed under a $1.425 million bond” after he had contacted the police to notify them of a dead body in the middle of the road. As someone put it on Facebook, “Don’t call the cops. Ever. Even if you find a dead body. Just don’t ever call the cops.”

26. Read what happened to Diane Avera of Meridian, Mississippi, when she went to Alabama to buy Sudafed, even though she did not know that this was illegal.
Andy Johnson and family.
Andy Johnson and family.

27. Andy Johnson of Uinta County, Wyoming, faces EPA fines of $75,000 per day for building a pond on land that he owns.

28. Douglas Zerby of Long Beach was shot and killed by police while watering his lawn because some idiot neighbor thought the hose nozzle was a gun.

29. Darien Roseen was arrested and had his vehicle searched by sheriff’s deputies in Payette County, Idaho, simply because his Colorado license plates led them to believe that he could have been carrying marijuana.
Banks was a high school All-American linebacker whose career was interrupted by a false rape conviction. The Atlanta Falcons  gave Banks a tryout in 2013.
Brian Banks was a high school All-American linebacker whose career and life were interrupted by a false rape conviction. The Atlanta Falcons gave Banks a tryout in 2013.

30. Brian Banks of Long Beach spent five years in prison and five more years as a registered sex offender as a result of a rape conviction. And then his accuser changed her story.
These are not “isolated incidents.” There are no doubt countless other examples of people who were doing nothing wrong, yet were harshly punished.

Also, consider the following:
• The Internal Revenue Code is 73,955 pages and millions of words long. No one has read it cover-to-cover and no one knows every aspect of it. Yet if anyone violates any of its provisions it can mean fines, prison or even death.
yale law library
• We are often told that “ignorance of the law is no defense.” To the right is a picture of the Yale Law Library. Do you know every law contained within these tomes?
  • Read what various emissaries of the Amerikan police state have done to these veterans who went all over the world to “fight for our freedom.”
• Seventy-two types of Americans are classified as terrorists in various government documents. Senator Harry Reid has now added a seventy-third category.
• Read how police have used asset forfeiture laws to seize millions of dollars from people without charging them with any crimes.
• Read this article and pay special attention to these words from former NSA official William Binney: “The problem is, if they think they’re not doing anything that’s wrong, they don’t get to define that. The central government does.”
• Read how the Innocence Project has helped exonerate over 300 wrongfully imprisoned people, many of whom were on death row.
• Attorney Harvey Silverglate argues that the average American commits three felonies a day without even knowing it.
• This Ford executive claims that, thanks to GPS, “we know everyone who breaks the law.”
• Although it has been estimated that there are over 3000 types of federal criminal offenses, no one knows the exact number for sure.
So, do you still feel you have nothing to fear?
Fascinating article from The Chronicle of Higher Education: “Why Privacy Matters Even If You Have ‘Nothing to Hide’”.

From NewAmericaNow -

Also consider how your politicians, judges, police, regulatory agents, Gate keeper anyone in authority can be manipulated by finding the right skeleton in their closet and cause them to do things they ordinarily would not do. Remember, power corrupts, absolute power corrupts absolutely. Your Republic is in danger.

Tuesday, May 13, 2014

Gun Control In Nazi Germany and Historical Lessons

Guest Post by Audrey Kline via the Ludwig von Mises Institute,

There is no shortage of theories or writings related to the rise of the Third Reich and the subsequent Holocaust. Stephen Halbrook’s 2013 book, Gun Control in the Third Reich offers a compelling and important account of the role of gun prohibition in aiding Hitler’s goals of exterminating the Jews and other “enemies of the state.” While much of the early gun prohibition was created with supposedly good intent, Halbrook carefully and meticulously details how a change in political regime facilitated manipulating some well-intentioned gun registration laws and other gun prohibition to be used in inconceivable ways.

Students of history as well as Second Amendment enthusiasts will find this a fascinating book and will find parallels between gun prohibition in pre-Nazi and Nazi Germany, and attempts to prohibit types of gun ownership and implement other forms of gun prohibition in the United States today. The current climate in the United States surrounding gun prohibition combined with a president who uses his office to impose executive order in ways not historically common gives many citizens pause, especially when looking at the era of the Third Reich. While certain states have imposed gun registration laws recently, enforcement of the laws remains unclear.

While Halbrook is careful to point out that a combination of factors led to the events of the Holocaust, there is no denying that many of the pre-war activities contributed to Hitler’s ability to disarm targeted groups, particularly the Jews. The rapid pace with which Hitler disarmed the populace in Germany is startling. Halbrook’s account is gripping, thorough, and full of legal documentation, leading the reader through the sometimes-daily changes in gun prohibitions that furthered Hitler’s agenda. Ultimately, the prohibitions enacted by the Nazi regime led to monopoly control of firearms by the Nazis and eliminated the ability of many groups in society to defend themselves. A similar progression in contemporary society related to government control of firearms and the firearms industry is a concern of many gun owners in the United States today.

In Part I of the book, a chaotic post-WWI Germany is the backdrop, a time when there were no established policies or laws pertaining to firearm ownership. Concern about firearms not being turned in after the war and conflict between extremist groups and the government led to the implementation of gun control laws. However, well-meaning clauses in the laws were subsequently used to provide the government with complete control over gun ownership, creating registries of gun and ammunition ownership, which ultimately fell into the hands of the Nazis. These lists were methodically used to disarm citizens. Through the first three chapters of the book, Halbrook does a masterful job of detailing the ever-changing gun control policies, ranging from the most extreme (execution on the spot) to the postured ‘relaxation’ of gun control laws that allowed possession of very expensive long arms that would not be affordable for the majority of the population.

Part II of the book opens with the naming of Hitler as chancellor of Germany at the end of January 1933, and the immediate utilization of the Weimar gun control policies to begin the Nazi campaign to seize arms and eradicate the so-called “enemies of the state” (all of whom were tagged as Communists). As a result, less than a month later, Hitler and Göring convinced President Hindenburg that an emergency decree was needed, which ultimately gave the Nazis the ability to eliminate constitutional assurances of liberty and free speech, a free press, the ability to assemble, and the right to privacy in personal communications. Furthermore, search and seizure of homes was authorized. This carte blanche for search and seizure essentially became the modus operandi of the Third Reich.

By the end of March, Hitler had succeeded in passing the “Enabling Law” which gave him the ability to create laws as he wished, with no requirement for consultation. Following this, the confiscation of weapons escalated. Municipal governments were informed that military weapons and ammunition had to be surrendered by the end of March. The Jews were targeted next, with a large raid in East Berlin on April 4, 1933. Jews were not forbidden to own firearms until 1938, but the raid led to confiscations and arrests. The 1928 Firearms Law was utilized to identify the so-called enemies of the state, locate them, interview them, and subsequently confiscate their weapons, thereby increasing Nazi control and eliminating private ownership of firearms from the majority of society.

Part III of the book details episodes of enforcement and expansion of gun prohibition by Hitler’s regime. To mark the one-year anniversary of Hitler’s power, the Law for the Reconstruction of the Reich was passed in January 1934, which centralized control over police and led to the replacement of the SA (Sturm Abteilung or Brownshirts) with the SS. Upon President Hindenburg’s death, Hitler assumed the presidency as well, allowing him the ability to rule by decree. Hitler could now declare laws at will and there was no right of appeal for those arrested. The military pledged allegiance to Hitler and the citizenry was instructed to follow Hitler’s decrees.

Confiscated firearms were redistributed to the police and concentration camp guards. The number of searches and arrests continued to escalate, and with the adoption of the Nürnberg Laws in September 1935, Germans or those with ‘kindred blood’ were decreed as citizens, leaving the Jews without citizenship and consequently, without civil rights. A new weapons law was drafted in November that would also forbid Jews from operating in the firearms industry. Though not yet enacted, the draft opened the door for the stealing of the gun manufacturing company, Simson & Co., by Hitler, who claimed that the Jewish owners were guilty of fraud. Additional accounts are given of exploitation of various incidents to further the Nazi campaign against the Jews.

Nazi Party control of the use and ownership of firearms was quickly implemented and far-reaching, with refinements to the Weapons Law continuing over the next few years. Eventually, in April 1938, Jews were required to register their personal assets if valued at over 5,000 marks. Just a few months later, Jews were required to register at local police stations to receive identification cards. Jews began to flee Berlin and other parts of Germany, as they were able.

In the concluding section of the book, Reichskristallnacht (Night of the Broken Glass) is detailed. Jews had been systematically disarmed, and their identity and locations were now on file with local police. It was simply a matter of time before the full shift into deportation and extermination of the Jews would begin. Records support that a campaign to arrest legally registered Jewish owners of firearms was now underway, along with the push by the Nazis to pressure Jews to flee Germany.

The complete confiscation of weapons held by Jews at this point was sparked by the November 7, 1938 assassination attempt of a German diplomat, supposedly by a Polish-Jewish teenager at the embassy in Paris. The Night of the Broken Glass came in the following few days. All Jewish weapons (including such things as letter openers) were confiscated, and all Jewish organizations were deemed illegal. With the Jews disarmed, Hitler’s plans could proceed with a defenseless populace. The majority of the non-Jewish German population was stunned by what had transpired but too afraid to protest. Isolated cases of resistance remained, such as the now well-known case of Oskar Schindler. When deportations commenced in October 1941, the possessions of the Jews were searched by the Gestapo for anything of value, and completed the disarming of the Jews. The dangers of silent witness are now well known.

As has been well documented, Jews were methodically attacked, their homes, businesses, and synagogues ransacked and burned. Upward of 30,000 Jews were arrested. Any Jews resisting arrest were ordered shot on the spot. Attacks on the Jews were to be carried out by the SA, with no interference by police. Jews arrested were to be sent to concentration camps for up to 20 years. The pogrom was so thorough that nearly all age appropriate, Jewish adult males in Stuttgart had been arrested. With the population afraid and disarmed, Hitler could proceed with little worry about resistance. The Court reinforced that there was no judicial review needed for activities of the Gestapo.

Halbrook concludes by noting that less government regulation and a tradition of rejecting tyranny could have led to a different outcome in Germany. Instead, systematic creation and manipulation of firearms registration and regulations, coupled with the decimation of individual citizen’s rights, enabled Hitler’s dictatorship and the slaughter of millions of innocent Jews and citizens of Nazi-occupied countries, as well as tens of thousands of Germans. It remains for all of us to wonder what might have been had people refused to register their firearms. Indeed, we should all take note and never forget.

Wednesday, May 7, 2014

The Chilling and Terrible Truth Behind The Evil That Is Common Core

Have you heard about Common Core? The chilling truth behind these new national educational "standards" will terrify you. Common Core represents the latest and most comprehensive step in the drive toward complete government control of our children and their education.

The following video will shock you, it will keep you riveted to your seat and will inform you like no other video I have seen on the subject. I personally did not think I could watch the entire 2 hour video and I was surprised as were my guests at the time that we had to pause the video for bathroom breaks. Watch it now, pass it on to others, especially parents, grandparents, teachers, principals and all educators everywhere you can. This must be defeated by the left and right, democrats and republicans, liberals  and conservatives. Let us unite for our children's sake. There is no greater reason. - NewAmericaNow

 Guest Post By Dave Hodges

There is a Trojan Horse within our midst and it is called Common Core. I did a cursory analysis of the program as the implementation came down which stated that implementation was imminent.

Finding information on this program has been difficult to say the least. The vast majority of teachers know next to nothing about the program. School administrators have many unanswered questions about Common Core’s implementation strategies, policies and regulations. This portion of the Common Core series focuses on the baseless and even false claims that Common Core will improve the majority of the students academic performance and ready them for college.

College Ready?

Isn’t it interesting that our government says that is their goal to get students ready for college, while at the same time overseeing an increase in college tuition which is eight times greater than the inflation rate as well as running a corrupt student loan program which is making debt slaves out of college students.

I laugh at the Common Core advocates who say the program is designed to get students ready for college because there is not one legitimate shred of proof to back up the claim. In fact, all of the credible research maintains that educational achievement will go backwards under Common Core.

It is very disturbing that it remains unclear what governance structure will be created in the future to address issues related to the Common Core Standards. What is clear is that the Standards are owned and copyrighted by nongovernmental (NGO) entities unaccountable to parents and students in individual states.

The Impact of Common Core on Math

The educational mantra of the federal government is that they wish for our students to lead the world in math and science. My son is an excellent math student, and this was impetus and motivation for me to investigate Common Core’s claims that math skills of students will be enhanced by following this novel program. Subsequently, I have examined and re-examined the impact of Common Core on math.

The standards require the teaching of geometry to follow an experimental method, which has never been used successfully anywhere in the world. And despite the claims made by Common Core advocates, the Common Core standards are not internationally bench-marked.

In fact, exclusion of key math concepts is commonplace under Common Core. The Pioneer Institutes examination of Common Core revealed the following deficiencies:
  • Common Core fails to teach prime factorization and consequently does not include teaching about least common denominators or greatest common factors.
  • Common Core fails to include conversions among fractions, decimals, and percents, identified as a key skill by the National Council of Teachers of Mathematics.
  • Common Core de-emphasizes algebraic manipulation, which is a prerequisite for advanced mathematics, and instead effectively redefines algebra as “functional algebra”, which does not prepare students for STEM careers.
  • Common Core does not require proficiency with addition and subtraction until grade 4, a grade behind the expectations of the high-performing states and our international competitors.
  • Common Core does not require proficiency with multiplication using the standard algorithm (step-by-step procedure for calculations) until grade 5, a grade behind the expectations of the high-performing states and our international competitors.
  • Common Core does not require proficiency with division using the standard algorithm until grade 6, a grade behind the expectations of the high-performing states and our international competitors.
  • Common Core starts teaching decimals only in grade 4, about two years behind the more rigorous state standards, and fails to use money as a natural introduction to this concept.
  • Common Core fails to teach in K-8 about key geometrical concepts such as the area of a triangle, sum of angles in a triangle, isosceles and equilateral triangles, or constructions with a straightedge and compass that good state standards include.
Additionally I found more examples of Common Core taking student achievement backwards through delaying when children which type of math.
  • The mathematics standards place Algebra I in ninth grade, rather than in grade 8 where it has traditionally been taught. This fact guarantees that the majority of students will not reach calculus in high school.
  • The standards require the teaching of geometry to follow an experimental method, which has never been used successfully anywhere in the world. And despite the claims made by Common Core advocates, the Common Core standards are not internationally bench-marked.
  • Common Core excludes certain Algebra II and Geometry content that is currently a prerequisite at almost every four-year state college.
The aforementioned facts speak for themselves and require no further elaboration.

Please tell me how our children are better off under these circumstances? They are not! Recently, I unsuccessfully tried to enroll my son in one of the Basis charter schools. I asked some very pointed questions about Common Core and how it was impacting their instructional strategies and course offerings. After the administrators wiped away their smiles, I was told that Common Core is something that they do not worry about because their curriculum and student expectations are so much higher that Common Core is not a factor in the education of their students. Unfortunately, my son was “wait-listed” and he did not get in because of over-crowding. Fortunately, we feel that our second choice, a specialized public school is promising and we have high hopes.

Class Warfare

Also at issue here is the perpetuation of class warfare. If my kid gets a quality education and your kid doesn’t, then your kid is going to work for my kid and on my kid’s terms. If the elite’s kids are going to be attending schools like Basis, or some affluent school that a middle class family cannot afford or gain entry to, this perpetuates a bifurcation of future opportunities. And when programs like Common Core are imposed on the public schools, the class differences related to education are exacerbated. All education should be free to all, as education can be the great equalizer. However, that would not serve the need to dominate by the elite of this country and this is another discussion for another article.

The aforementioned facts beg the question, how many parents actually look into these factors such as Common Core? How many parents simply entrust their neighborhood schools to provide an education that will make the children university ready? Would you write a blank check to pay your electric bill or to purchase a new car? Of course you wouldn’t. Then why would you write a blank check to your neighborhood school when so much is at stake? 


There are still excellent teachers and outstanding principals who pay lip service to the “standards,” and go above and beyond to provide quality opportunities to enhance the education of their students. What kind of school does your child go to? It might behoove you to investigate your child’s school, just as if your child’s future may depend upon it, because it does.

In the next installment, I will be exposing how science is being dumbed down as well and identify who actually created Common Core. The answer will surprise many of you.

Dave is an award winning psychology, statistics and research professor, a college basketball coach, a mental health counselor, a political activist and writer who has published dozens of editorials and articles in several publications such as Freedoms Phoenix, News With Views and The Arizona Republic.

The Common Sense Show features a wide variety of important topics that range from the loss of constitutional liberties, to the subsequent implementation of a police state under world governance, to exploring the limits of human potential. The primary purpose of The Common Sense Show is to provide Americans with the tools necessary to reclaim both our individual and national sovereignty.

Thursday, May 1, 2014

16 Signs That You’re a Slave to the Matrix

16 Signs That You’re a Slave to the Matrix Guest Post by Sigmund Fraud

Today’s world is a strange place. We are inundated with signals from early on in life, encouraging each of us to walk a particular path, establishing blinders on us along the way to discourage us from looking for alternatives to what the herd is doing or thinking. Life is so complex that over time, if we are paying attention, we realize that there are an infinite number of possibilities to what the human experience could be, and we come see that the world is on fire because individuals all too infrequently question why things are the way they are, failing to notice that their mindset or behavior needs adjustment in favor of more intelligent, commonsensical, or sustainable patterns of existence.

Not meant to be overtly critical of anyone’s lifestyle choices or personal situation, the following 16 signs that you’re a slave to the matrix are meant purely as an observational approach to helping you identify the areas of your life where you may be missing an opportunity to liberate yourself from someone else’s self-destructive design for your life.
Read on, and please take a moment to comment below with anything you’d like to add to the list or object to.

1. You pay taxes to people you’d like to see locked up in jail. This is perhaps the biggest indicator that we are slaves to the matrix. The traditional notion of slavery conjures up images of people in shackles forced to work on plantations to support rich plantation owners. The modern-day version of this is forced taxation, where our incomes are automatically docked before we ever see the money, regardless of whether or not we approve of how the money is spent.

2. You go to the doctor, but you’re still sick. Modern medical care, for all of its scientific progress, has sadly become sick care, where we are rarely advised to eat well and tend to our mental and physical health, but instead are routinely advised to consume expensive medications and procedures that are pushed by the for-profit healthcare matrix.

3. You’ve picked Team Democrat or Team Republican and argue with your friends, family and co-workers about politics. This is what the control strategy of divide and conquer looks like in our society. Both of the major parties are corrupt through and through, and independent candidates are not even allowed to exist. By believing in one of these parties and burning your personal energy on arguing with other ordinary people you are turning over your soul to the matrix, and doing your share in making sure that ‘we the people’ will never be united against corruption.

4. You work hard doing something you hate to earn fiat dollars. Work is important and money does pay the bills; however, so many people lose the best years of their lives doing things they hate, just for money. The truth about money today is that we do not have money, but instead, inflationary fiat currency that is privately owned and manipulated. Since it is still necessary to get by in this world, it is best that you get more value for your time by doing something you enjoy or by working with people you do not despise. It is easier than you may think to live on less money than we believe we need, we just have to be willing to go against the grain realize this.

5. You’re willing to accrue personal debt to fund the acquisition of consumer a consumer-oriented lifestyle. Each time a credit card is swiped it creates digits on the balance sheets of the banks that are most involved with the financial looting of the world today. These digits are then multiplied electronically by the fractional reserve system in place, which exponentially increases the power of these institutions. To participate in this, and by agreeing to pay this fake money back with interest in order to maintain a certain lifestyle is a strong indication that you are bound by one of the main tenets of the matrix – consumerism.

6. You converse with real people about the ongoing happenings of TV shows. TV is the most potent tool used for mind control, and the ‘programming’ that is available, while certainly cool, fun, or entertaining is geared to reinforce certain behaviors amongst the masses. Dramatizing the ego’s importance, over sexualizing everything, glorifying violence, and teaching submissiveness to phony authority are the main features of modern TV. By taking what is happening onscreen and making it a part of your real life, you are doing your job of supporting the matrix’s desire to confuse us about the nature of reality, proving that something doesn’t have to actually happen in order for it to feel real to people.

7. You don’t have anything to hide from total surveillance. If it does not bother you that someone, somewhere working for somebody is watching you, listening to your conversations, and monitoring your movements, then you are a good slave to the matrix. Invisible surveillance is an insidious form of thought control, and by using the logic of, ‘I have nothing to hide, therefore, it will do me no harm to be surveilled,’ then you are mindlessly admitting that you have an earthly master and are not of sovereign mind and body.

8. You think the world would be safer if only governments had guns. This is a violent world, and criminals engage in criminality against honest people at every level of society, including from within the government. Sure, in a perfect world weapons wouldn’t be necessary for anyone; but, sadly, our world is anything but perfect, and firearms are indeed a very effective form of protection against common criminals and abusive governments alike. The willingness to forgo your right to self-defense is a sign that you’ve relegated personal responsibility to someone else. Having the masses abdicate personal responsibility is one of the most important aspects of controlling them. Welcome to the matrix.

9. You knowingly drink fluoridated water. Of all the health debates taking place today, the topic of fluoridated water is the easiest to understand, for it is a toxic by-product of an industrial process. Water is supposedly fluoridated to aid in dental health, which is debatable in itself; but, if this were so, then the involuntary fluoridation of public water is a medication without your consent … a form of slavery. Knowing this and continuing to drink fluoridated water is a sign that you’re content with your slavery to the matrix. Here are 18 scientifically validated reasons to end public water fluoridation.

10. You knowingly consume toxic poisons like MSG and Aspartame. These two chemicals are widely known to be toxic to the human body. Knowing this and continuing to poison yourself with tasty, but chemical-laden processed foods is a sign that the matrix has programmed you to place less value on your health and future than on your immediate gratification.

11. You depend on the pharmaceutical industrial complex for the management of your own mental health. The use of psychotropic medicines is rising rapidly in our society because people have been convinced that mental states are similar to diseases, while the truth about natural mental health has been obfuscated by corporate media and a for-profit medical establishment. If you’re taking psychotropic medications, then you are under one of the most potent forms of mind control available. Part of this control is to convince you that you have no authority over your own mind. This is perhaps the matrix’s most terrible lie, and by willingly taking these psychotropic medications you are conforming to the worst kind of slavery, and inhibiting your natural mental and emotional responses to the life stressors that are signaling to you that you need to change your behavior and habits.

12. You haven’t yet stopped watching your local and national news programming. The mainstream news media is a tool of control and manipulation, and by continuing to support their ideas and worldviews by giving them your attention you are volunteering to be a slave to this not-so-subtle form of mental programming. Even the local news is scripted at the national level by agents of the handful of corporations tasked with shaping our opinions of events.

13. You’re more concerned with televised sports or other mindless distractions than you are with the quality of your natural environment. The Deepwater Horizon, Alberta Tar Sands, the rise of Fracking, the sacrifice of the Amazon, and Fukushima are all life-changing events that will severely impact the our future on planet earth. To be unconcerned with all of this while tuning into a never ending stream of sports trivia and distraction-based living is a sign that your sense of self-preservation has been stolen and replaced with an impulsive tendency for triviality and escapism.

14. You’re skeptical of any area of life that hasn’t been ‘proven’ or validated by modern science. The very essence of science is the inquiry into the unknown, implying that until science can grasp something, it is inexplicable. By discrediting or ridiculing experiences that other people have, yet evading scientific understanding, like near-death experiences, acupuncture, or the life-changing effects of Ayahuasca, then you are slavishly reducing your understanding of the world to a narrow range of possibilities. The matrix is made possible by efforts of volunteer gatekeepers people who are unwilling to think outside of the box.

15. You’ve never questioned the popularized version of ancient history and the origins of our civilization. There are many unanswered questions about the origins of the human race that point to a different version of human history than what is taught in school. Read 20 history questions they refuse to answer in school to discover some of the many ways in which our history has been hijacked. By never questioning what we’ve been told about our origin we are acquiescing to many of the imposed belief systems and narrow-banded views of human potential that the matrix promotes.

16. You haven’t yet realized that you are a spiritual being living a human experience.
If you can relate to any of the items on this list, then the matrix has you, and it is now your duty to engage more deeply in your liberation.
If you’d like to add to or object to anything on this list, then please do so in the comments section below, and be sure to share this with your friends.

US Economy Is A House Of Cards

Guest Post by Paul Craig Roberts

The US economy is a house of cards. Every aspect of it is fraudulent, and the illusion of recovery is created with fraudulent statistics.

American capitalism itself is an illusion. All financial markets are rigged. Massive liquidity poured into financial markets by the Federal Reserve’s Quantitative Easing inflates stock and bond prices and drives interest rates, which are supposed to be a measure of the cost of capital, to zero or negative, with the implication that capital is so abundant that its cost is zero and can be had for free. Large enterprises, such as mega-banks and auto manufacturers, that go bankrupt are not permitted to fail. Instead, public debt and money creation are used to cover private losses and keep corporations “too big to fail” afloat at the expense not of shareholders but of people who do not own the shares of the corporations.

Profits are no longer a measure that social welfare is being served by capitalism’s efficient use of resources when profits are achieved by substituting cheaper foreign labor for domestic labor, with resultant decline in consumer purchasing power and rise in income and wealth inequality. In the 21st century, the era of jobs offshoring, the US has experienced an unprecedented explosion in income and wealth inequality. I have made reference to this hard evidence of the failure of capitalism to provide for the social welfare in the traditional economic sense in my book, The Failure of Laissez Faire Capitalism, and Thomas Piketty’s just published book, Capital in the 21st Century, has brought an alarming picture of reality to insouciant economists, such as Paul Krugman. As worrisome as Piketty’s picture is of inequality, I agree with Michael Hudson that the situation is worse than Piketty describes.
Capitalism has been transformed by powerful private interests whose control over governments, courts, and regulatory agencies has turned capitalism into a looting mechanism. Wall Street no longer performs any positive function. Wall Street is a looting mechanism, a deadweight loss to society. Wall Street makes profits by front-running trades with fast computers, by selling fraudulent financial instruments that it is betting against as investment grade securities, by leveraging equity to unprecedented heights, making bets that cannot be covered, and by rigging all commodity markets.

The Federal Reserve and the US Treasury’s “Plunge Protection Team” aid the looting by supporting the stock market with purchases of stock futures, and protect the dollar from the extraordinary money-printing by selling naked shorts into the Comex gold futures market.

The US economy no longer is based on education, hard work, free market prices and the accountability that real free markets impose. Instead, the US economy is based on manipulation of prices, speculative control of commodities, support of the dollar by Washington’s puppet states, manipulated and falsified official statistics, propaganda from the financial media, and inertia by countries, such as Russia and China, who are directly harmed, both economically and politically, by the dollar payments system.

As the governments in most of the rest of the world are incompetent, Washington’s incompetence doesn’t stand out, and this is Washington’s salvation.

But it is not a salvation for Americans who live under Washington’s rule. As all statistical evidence makes completely clear, the share of income and wealth going to the bulk of the US population is declining. This decline means the end of the consumer market that has been the mainstay of the US economy. Now that the mega-rich have even more disproportionate shares of the income and wealth, what happens to an economy based on selling imports and off-shored production of goods and services to a domestic consumer market? How do the vast majority of Americans purchase more when their incomes have not grown for years and have even declined and they are too impoverished to borrow more from banks that won’t lend?
The America in which I grew up was self-sufficient. Foreign trade was a small part of the economy. When I was Assistant Secretary of the Treasury, the US still had a trade surplus except for oil. Offshoring of America’s jobs had not begun, and US earnings on its foreign investments exceeded foreign earnings on US investments. Therefore, America’s earnings abroad covered its energy deficit in its balance of trade.
The economic stability achieved during the Reagan administration was shattered by Wall Street greed. Wall Street threatened corporations with takeovers if the corporations did not produce higher profits by relocating their production of goods and services for American markets abroad. The lower labor costs boosted earnings and stock prices and satisfied Wall Street’s cravings for ever more earnings, but brought an end to the rise in US living standards except for the mega-rich. Financial deregulation loaded the economy with the risks of asset bubbles.

Americans are an amazingly insouciant people. By now any other people would have burnt Wall Street to the ground.

Washington has unique subjects. Americans will take endless abuse and blame some outside government for their predicament–Iraq, Afghanistan, Libya, China, Russia. Such an insouciant and passive people are ideal targets for looting, and their economy, hollowed-out by looting, is a house of cards.