Friday, August 13, 2021

Europe: Mass Protests Against Covid-19 Vaccine 'Passports' - Soeren Kern

 

​ by Soeren Kern

"We are neither anti-vaccine nor pro-vaccine. We are for free choice. Those of us who do not want to get vaccinated do not do so out of ideology but because we realize that there are so many doubts and perplexities about this which is in fact an experimental mass vaccination." — Protester, Genoa.

  • Judging from the large number of banners with the words "Liberty" and "Freedom" that have been present at the events, it seems safe to conclude that many if not most of the marchers simply want freedom of choice.

  • "If tomorrow you infect your father, your mother or myself, I am a victim of your freedom when you had the possibility of having something to protect you and me. And in the name of your freedom, you may be having a serious form of the virus and you will arrive at this hospital. It is all these personnel who will have to take care of you and perhaps give up taking care of someone else. That's not freedom, it's called irresponsibility, selfishness." — French President Emmanuel Macron.

  • "The government has thought out the measures very well — anything that is kind of fun is made dependent on vaccination. Do you want to sip an aperitif in a café? Get vaccinated. Do you want to visit your mother by train? Get vaccinated. Do you want to go shopping? Get vaccinated." — Manfred Haferburg, German commentator, writing for the blog Achgut.

  • "We are neither anti-vaccine nor pro-vaccine. We are for free choice. Those of us who do not want to get vaccinated do not do so out of ideology but because we realize that there are so many doubts and perplexities about this which is in fact an experimental mass vaccination." — Protester, Genoa.

  • "The limits of freedoms are [when they impact on] the rights of other people. One cannot expose others to the loss of life or health." — Polish Deputy Prime Minister Jarosław Kaczyński.

Protests are erupting in cities across Europe in response to government efforts to impose so-called Covid passports, documents that show proof of immunization against Covid-19. In France, President Emmanuel Macron announced what arguably are the most severe measures in Europe to coerce people to get vaccinated. As of August 9, a "health pass" (passe sanitaire) is required to gain access to many places associated with daily life. Pictured: A gendarme checks the "health pass" of a customer in a bar in Bauvin, northern France, on August 10, 2021. (Photo by François Lo Presti/AFP via Getty Images)

Protests are erupting in cities across Europe in response to government efforts to impose so-called Covid passports, documents that show proof of immunization against Covid-19. The passports, which effectively reward the vaccinated and punish the unvaccinated, have sparked a heated debate over the constitutionality of government attempts to force people to get vaccinated.

In the last two weeks alone, hundreds of thousands of people of all political persuasions have gathered in at least 300 European cities to protest government overreach and to defend civil liberties. So far, the protests have not had the intended effect of reversing government policies, but they have highlighted that Europeans are thoroughly divided on the issue of Covid vaccines.

Some governments have tried to discredit the protesters by describing them as "anti-vaxxers," "negationists," "Covid deniers" — and much worse. Judging from the large number of banners with the words "Liberty" and "Freedom" that have been present at the events, it seems safe to conclude that many if not most of the marchers simply want freedom of choice. Many appear concerned that governments will use the current Covid-19 restrictions as a precedent to restrict other freedoms in the future.

Critics of the Covid passports say that they are being used by governments to compel vaccination at a time when immunization efforts in many European countries have stalled, presumably due to public apprehension about the unknown risks of Covid vaccines.

European publics appear to be roughly evenly divided about Covid vaccines: As of August 11, 62% of the adult EU population — with huge variances from country to country — was fully vaccinated, according to the European Center for Disease Prevention and Control (ECDC). Anecdotal evidence suggests that many of the unvaccinated are waiting for more information about the long-term efficacy of the vaccines.

The ECDC data show a marked deceleration in vaccination rates in almost all EU countries in July. This coincides with increasing reports of so-called breakthrough infections — fully vaccinated people who get sick with Covid-19 — that have called into question the effectiveness of the vaccines. Even those who have received the first dose appear to be reluctant to take the second dose, according to the ECDC data.

In France, President Emmanuel Macron has announced what arguably are the most severe measures in Europe to coerce people to get vaccinated. As of August 9, a "health pass" (passe sanitaire) is required to gain access to many places associated with daily life: cafés and restaurants (including outdoor terraces), hotels, gyms, shopping centers, planes, trains and long-distance buses, hospitals (with the exception of emergency rooms) and nursing homes. Anyone who enters an establishment without showing a valid pass is subject to a fine of €135 ($160). Hours after the measure took effect, police were deployed to enforce compliance. In the Paris train station Gare de Lyon, people using public transport were required to wear blue bracelets.

Certain professions that require close contact with the public (healthcare workers, firefighters, domestic helpers) will be subject to compulsory vaccination as of September 15. Those who refuse to comply risk suspension without pay.

To obtain the health pass, people must prove that they are fully vaccinated with an EU-approved vaccine; present a negative PCR or antigen test taken within the last 48 hours; or have a Covid-19 recovery certificate that is less than six months old.

The health pass rules will be extended to minors age 12 and over beginning on September 30.

On August 5, the French Supreme Court (Conseil constitutionnel) ruled that all of the government's Covid passport measures were constitutional — except that employees with fixed-term contracts cannot be fired, although their salaries can be withheld.

French MP Nicolas Dupont-Aignan tweeted:

"The #conseilconstitutionnel dishonors itself by validating most of the #PassSanitaire! The wise thus trample on the Constitution, flout individual freedoms & our fundamental values. A few concessions at the margin do not change the indignity of this decision!"

MP Jean-Luc Mélenchon added:

"Very disappointing decision of the Constitutional Council. It does not protect any of the freedoms threatened by the Pass Sanitaire. Black humor: a fixed-term contract cannot be interrupted but the payment of salary remains suspended."

Macron's measures have sparked massive protests for four consecutive weekends. On August 7, hundreds of thousands of people waving placards reading, "No to dictatorship," "Liberty," and "Macron, we don't want your health pass," marched in nearly 200 French cities and towns, including: Aix-en-Provence, Albertville, Avignon, Bayonne, Bergerac, Bordeaux, Caen, Chambéry, Cherbourg, Foix, Guingamp, La Rochelle, Lille, Marseilles (here, here and here), Metz, Mont-de-Marsan, Montluçon, Montpellier (here, here and here), Mulhouse, Nancy, Nantes, Narbonne, Nice, Paris (here, here and here), Pau, Perpignan, Reims, Rennes, Rouen, Strasbourg, Toulon, Toulouse and Valence.

In some cities, including Grenoble and Cambrai, restaurant owners refused to open to protest the health passes. In Avignon, a bar owner created an "Anti-Health Pass" in support of restaurant owners in the city. In Besançon, residents gathered in front of the local hospital to protest the health pass. In Roanne, residents demonstrated in front of the local fire station to support unvaccinated firemen at risk of losing their jobs. In Marseilles, police officers wore stickers with the message: "My body, my free choice: I will not be vaccinated."

Observers estimated that up to 870,000 people joined the protests across France on August 7. The French Police Union said that approximately 500,000 demonstrators had gathered by 3pm. The French Interior Ministry claimed that the total number of protesters numbered just 240,000.

President Macron blasted the protesters as "irrational," "cynical," and "manipulative." He added:

"If tomorrow you infect your father, your mother or myself, I am a victim of your freedom when you had the possibility of having something to protect you and me. And in the name of your freedom, you may be having a serious form of the virus and you will arrive at this hospital. It is all these personnel who will have to take care of you and perhaps give up taking care of someone else. That's not freedom, it's called irresponsibility, selfishness."

Despite the tough talk, the mass turnout surely must be concerning for Macron, who, ahead of French presidential elections set for April 2022, is running neck and neck in the polls with rival Marine Le Pen. In an indication that the protests may be having an impact, the government announced on August 7 that negative PCR tests would be valid for 72 hours, rather than 48 hours as stated earlier.

Commentator Manfred Haferburg, writing for the blog Achgut, described the scene in France:

"Suddenly the situation in France has changed. Yesterday, it was still about the defense of forced vaccination for employees of the health and transport system and the fire brigade. Today it is about the exclusion of unvaccinated people from almost all public life.

"But wait — exclusion not from all of life. The QR code is not checked to work in the large factories and to pay taxes. The government has thought out the measures very well — anything that is kind of fun is made dependent on vaccination. Do you want to sip an aperitif in a café? Get vaccinated. Do you want to visit your mother by train? Get vaccinated. Do you want to go shopping? Get vaccinated.

"It is the complete compulsory vaccination through the back door. The unvaccinated person can still test himself for free. But from September you must pay for the tests yourself. Then a visit to a restaurant suddenly costs 50 euros more for the test that is due. And anyone in Germany who is now gleefully shaking his head about France should wait another four weeks and then see what is going on in Germany."

In Germany, where Coronavirus-related protests have been going on for months, Chancellor Angela Merkel has vowed to make life difficult for the unvaccinated. After a "Corona Summit" on August 10 between the central government and the leaders of Germany's 16 federal states, Merkel threatened to confine the unvaccinated to their homes while the vaccinated could go about their daily lives. "The vaccinated will certainly be treated differently than the non-vaccinated if there is a further increase in the number of infections," she warned.

On August 9, the government admitted that it was aiming to further restrict the rights of unvaccinated people. In response to a parliamentary inquiry, the German Health Ministry stated:

"When the time for stricter measures for non-vaccinated people is reached, the federal and state governments will continue to act intensively for their own protection and the protection of the entire community."

Wolfgang Kubicki, Vice President of the Free Democrats (FDP), Germany's classical liberal party, responded with outrage over the government's ever-expanding role in the personal lives of citizens:

"The federal government is apparently saying goodbye to aligning its measures solely with the interests of the common good. Instead, citizens should now also be explicitly protected from themselves.

"Those who only see the responsible citizen as a risk factor who must be forced to act against his own will for his own good can no longer claim to act in the interests of the country and its citizens. The leaders [of Germany's 16 federal states] should take note of this statement and be aware that they can expect no constitutionally balanced coronavirus policy from the federal government."

Germany's largest circulation newspaper, Bild, published an angry rebuttal to Merkel's policies:

"Chancellor, we want unity (end the division and panic — equal rights for all people, vaccinated and unvaccinated; justice (end the violations to our freedoms — we want to be able to protest, we want that everyone can attend church or visit the football stadium); and freedom (anyone can choose to be vaccinated, we do not need your orders)."

Commentator Georg Gafron, writing for Tichys Einblick, accused Merkel of turning citizens into subjects:

"Everyone has their inalienable rights enshrined in the Basic Law. This also includes the right to the integrity of the person, this therefore obliges the particular self-determination of each individual. This has been invoked again and again in the history of the Federal Republic — by the way, this was also one of the things that made the Federal Republic so worth living in, the security and the protection of personal freedom and self-determination seemed to be guaranteed....

"But now it turns out that a large number of Germans and others living here actually want to forego the vaccination. The reasons for this are diverse. Due to the constant chaos in its Coronavirus policy, the federal government in particular cannot absolve itself of its share in creating uncertainty among the population and thus the loss of trust of the people.

"Now the situation is just the way it is. The vaccine is there, but a significant part of the population doesn't want it. Of course, doubts about its effectiveness and the fear of possible long-term consequences also contribute to this. This is where the fact that an open scientific discussion — I do not mean obscure conspiracy theories — has been and is being refused, takes its revenge....

"Anyone who wants to exercise their right to refuse vaccination will in the future have to dig deep into their pockets for various services such as going to a restaurant or a cinema because the PCR tests are compulsory for most people who have not been vaccinated and are subject to a charge.

"The constitutional judges may allow that, but the common man with a clear sense of the law will not accept it, because he has to pay for the exercise of a right in contrast to third parties. Where is the equality before the law?"

In Italy, thousands of people have protested the government's Covid passport, which took effect on August 6. The so-called Green Pass is now required to enter bars, cafes and restaurants (indoors only, not outdoors), gyms, theaters and a long list of other venues. The Green Pass, which applies to anyone 12 years of age or older, will be extended to universities and long-distance transport beginning on September 1.

Italian Interior Minister Luciana Lamorgese said that police would be deployed to restaurants and bars to carry out random checks to enforce the measure. Those who break the rules face fines of up to €400 ($470); businesses face closure for five days. University employees who fail to follow the measures this fall face suspension without pay.

To obtain the Green Pass, people must prove that they have received at least the first dose of a Covid vaccine in the previous nine months; be cured of Covid-19 in the previous six months; or present a negative PCR or antigen test taken within the previous 48 hours.

In recent days, thousands of protesters shouting "No Green Pass" and "Freedom, Freedom" have marched in over 80 Italian cities, including Florence, Milan, Naples, Rome and Turin. In Genoa, a protester said:

"We are neither anti-vaccine nor pro-vaccine. We are for free choice. Those of us who do not want to get vaccinated do not do so out of ideology but because we realize that there are so many doubts and perplexities about this which is in fact an experimental mass vaccination."

In Poland, more than 100,000 people gathered in the city of Katowice on August 7 to oppose government restrictions. The organizers of the "March for Freedom" said that their aim was to "resist the tyranny that has been born over the past year and a half." Participants displayed slogans calling for the government to "stop sanitary segregation" and "coerced vaccination." Poland's establishment media refused to report on the march altogether.

Polish Deputy Prime Minister Jarosław Kaczyński said that the state had an "obligation to do everything it can" to protect against Covid-19, and that people who have not been vaccinated should be subject to "restrictions." He accused such people of being "extremely selfish" and "lacking empathy." He added: "The limits of freedoms are [when they impact on] the rights of other people. One cannot expose others to the loss of life or health."

Public opinion on the issue appears divided, according to Notes from Poland. It cited a July 24 poll for Wirtualna Polska which found that although a narrow majority (54%) of Poles thought there should be some restrictions on the unvaccinated, they were split on specific measures:

"More than 40% said that those who have not been vaccinated should be barred from entering restaurants and cafes, while almost 55% disagreed.

"Moreover, 34% of respondents said that vaccinations should be required to use shopping malls, and 59% thought it should not. More than 30% supported limiting train travel for unvaccinated passengers, with more than twice as many (almost 62%) against the idea.

"A majority (57%) were also opposed to restrictions on access to amusement parks and cultural institutions, while 37% were in favor. More than three quarters of people (76%) were against banning unvaccinated people from using medical centres. Around 21% disagreed with them."

In Northern Ireland, where the Covid-19 vaccine passport program was suspended after a data breach resulted in users receiving other users' personal information, authorities rejected hundreds of fraudulent applications.

In Spain, thousands of people gathered in Madrid to protest Covid passports. Protests are also being planned in more than a dozen Spanish cities on August 14 to object to government efforts to vaccinate children.

Elsewhere in Europe, Covid-related protests have been held in Austria, Belgium, Bulgaria, Croatia, Cyprus, Czechia, Denmark, Estonia, Finland, Greece, Ireland, Latvia, Lithuania, Malta, Moldova, Norway, Portugal, Romania, Sweden, Switzerland and the United Kingdom.

 

Soeren Kern is a Senior Fellow at the New York-based Gatestone Institute.

Source: https://www.gatestoneinstitute.org/17634/vaccine-passports-europe

Follow Middle East and Terrorism on Twitter

Progressives’ 'Green Energy' Boondoggle Based on Fantasy and Greed - Bruce Thornton

 

​ by Bruce Thornton

The unholy alliance of Big Business and Big Government.

 


Last Thursday Joe Biden posed for a photo op with representatives from automobile manufacturers. They gathered there to mark the Biden administration’s plan to raise the miles-per-gallon standard that gasoline powered vehicles must achieve––52 MPG by 2026. The compensation for automakers will comprise more regulatory credits for carmakers and subsidies for electric vehicle (EV) consumers, which will lead to higher prices for trucks and SUVs to offset their losses on EVs. This means consumers of those popular vehicles will be subsidizing EV drivers. And more taxpayer money will go to increasing available electricity, providing more and faster charging stations, and improving battery capacity.

As the Wall Street Journal editorialized, “Behold Big Business colluding with Big Government to grab subsidies and raise consumer prices,” a form of “corporate socialism, or state capitalism.” This unholy alliance calls to mind the “military-industrial complex” Dwight Eisenhower warned about in 1961, a warning still pertinent today.

At least during the Cold War a nuclear-armed Soviet Union posed an existential threat that justified cooperation between politics and the armaments industries. Today, the purveyors of anthropogenic, catastrophic global warming (ACGW) ––the more accurate label masked by the euphemism “climate change”–– are using a dubious theory riddled with uncertainty to justify such crony capitalist policies. The challenges to ACGW in the last few decades have exposed those uncertainties and the dubious “science” proponents claim to be “settled,” and so can justify spending trillions  of taxpayer dollars,

For example, MIT professor of atmospheric science Richard Lindzen, and Princeton emeritus professor of physics William Happer have written, “We are both scientists who can attest that the research literature does not support the claim of a climate emergency. Nor will there be one. None of the lurid predictions — dangerously accelerating sea-level rise, increasingly extreme weather, more deadly forest fires, unprecedented warming, etc. — are any more accurate than the fire-and-brimstone sermons used to stoke fanaticism in medieval crusaders.” So too physicist Steven E. Koonin, who writes in his new book Unsettled. What Climate Science Tells Us, What it Doesn’t, and Why It Matters, “The science is insufficient to make useful projections about how the climate will change over the coming decades, much less what effect our actions will have on it.”

On top of the contested rationale for pouring billions of tax-payer dollars into one industry, the logistics of enlarging electricity production for “green” technology like wind turbines, solar panels, and half-ton batteries for EVs, not to mention expanding exponentially the electrical grid, are formidable, as Mark Mills has reported:

Building one wind turbine requires 900 tons of steel, 2,500 tons of concrete and 45 tons of nonrecyclable plastic. Solar power requires even more cement, steel and glass—not to mention other metals. Global silver and indium mining will jump 250% and 1,200% respectively over the next couple of decades to provide the materials necessary to build the number of solar panels, the International Energy Agency forecasts. World demand for rare-earth elements—which aren’t rare but are rarely mined in America—will rise 300% to 1,000% by 2050 to meet the Paris green goals. If electric vehicles replace conventional cars, demand for cobalt and lithium, will rise more than 20-fold. That doesn’t count batteries to back up wind and solar grids.

The “green energy” promoters also ignore other costs. Building solar and wind farms requires much more land than does fossil fuel production, with a greater destructive impact on the environment. Mining the rare-earth minerals like cobalt and lithium necessary for EV batteries leaves behind toxic waste, pollution, damage to wildlife habitats, and lunar landscapes. Reductions in carbon emissions that come from EVs are greatly offset by the fossil-fuel powered big machinery and coal- or natural gas-powered electricity used in mining these minerals.

And there are the human costs. The bulk of these mines and processing facilities are in countries like China, which controls 90% of cobalt refining, and the Republic of Congo, which produces 70% of raw cobalt, that do not have labor protections like those in the West. About 40,000 children, some as young as four years old, are working long hours in Congolese cobalt mines. Imagine how many more children or political prisoners will be slaving away to meet the increased demands for the batteries necessary for Biden’s EV “green” dreams to be realized.

Similar fossil-fuel use attend wind turbines. As Mills points out, “Building enough wind turbines to supply half the world’s electricity would require nearly two billion tons of coal to produce the concrete and steel, along with two billion barrels of oil to make the composite blades.” The amount of land necessary for both solar and wind farms would be enormous, with environmental damage to wild life habitats. And NIMBY coastal dwellers are unlikely to agree to 850-foot tall wind turbines sullying their ocean views and making mincemeat of sea birds.

The biggest problem with EVs, however, is that apart from the high-end Tesla, they are not popular with the average driver, which is why consumers have to be bribed with taxpayer money to buy them. As the Journal reports, “EVs remain impractical for many drivers who live outside cities,” given that “batteries need to be recharged every 200 to 300 miles, which can take at least 30 minutes even with today’s fastest chargers. Most people don’t want to wait that long when they’re on the road.”

Building more charging stations, which the Biden plan proposes, is not as easy a fix for that problem as he seems to think. More charging stations means a much larger capacity electrical grid, a gargantuan task if “clean energy” regulations must be followed. Also as last year’s rolling blackouts in California and this year’s blackouts in Texas remind us, “clean” solar and wind energy obviously doesn’t work at night or when the wind doesn’t blow.

This requires millions of half-ton backup batteries to store energy when the sun doesn’t shine and the wind doesn’t blow, and a larger grid to deliver it. As of now, about 12% of U.S. energy comes from renewable sources, and of that 12%, 26% comes from the sun,  and 11% from wind. This scant percentage of our energy production means some pretty spectacular advances in battery design and transmission line production and installation will have to happen to meet the “green energy” lobby’s fantastical goal to eliminate 80% of hydrocarbons by 2030, and 100% by 2050.

Furthermore, as Paul Driessen writes, “Generating all that electricity without new nuclear and hydroelectric plants would require tens of thousands of 850-foot-tall offshore wind turbines, hundreds of thousands (perhaps millions) of somewhat smaller onshore turbines, and billions of photovoltaic solar panels. Backing up sufficient nationwide electricity for even one week of windless, sunless days would involve well over a billion battery modules. Connecting all this and our cities would require thousands of miles of new transmission lines.”

And don’t forget, building any large-scale infrastructure in the U.S. incurs exorbitant costs in time and money because of multitudes of government regulations from environmental protection rules to hiring and contracting requirements. Boston’s Big Dig highway tunnel and California’s high-speed rail project are monuments to the waste and inefficiencies of such projects. And how will all these transmission lines and billions of solar panels and millions of wind turbines be constructed without using machines powered by fossil fuels, and electricity produced from natural gas and coal? Believing that all these miracles can happen by 2050––a mere ten years longer than it took for Boston’s Big Dig–– is a fantasy, albeit a lucrative one for the industries getting the subsidies.

Finally, these “green energy” solutions to impending ACGW doom even if accomplished will not make a difference in slowing temperature rises and the alleged catastrophes that will follow. For whatever reductions in emissions the West achieves, the rest of the world, especially China and India––the world’s first and third largest emitters––will undo. And why should developing nations that need cheap electricity and fossil fuels to expand their economies, condemn their peoples to the misery and diseases of poverty just because the well-nourished, rich West indulges its Disneyesque fantasies about Mother Nature, and its faddish distaste for icky, low-brow industries?

“Green energy” and “renewable energy” are mere marketing phrases like “all natural” and “organic.” They provide cover for industries partnering with government and lining up to get their share of the taxpayer money Biden promises to shovel over to them.

More important are the dangers of such collusion and concentration of power. Eisenhower’s warnings about the “military-industrial complex” are, mutatis mutandis, pertinent to the sort of political-economic collusion we are witnessing today:

In the councils of government, we must guard against the acquisition of unwarranted influence, whether sought or unsought, by the military-industrial complex. The potential for the disastrous rise of misplaced power exists and will persist. We must never let the weight of this combination endanger our liberties or democratic processes. We should take nothing for granted. Only an alert and knowledgeable citizenry can compel the proper meshing of the huge industrial and military machinery of defense with our peaceful methods and goals, so that security and liberty may prosper together.

As always, in the end the buck stops with We the People.

 

Bruce Thornton is a Shillman Journalism Fellow at the David Horowitz Freedom Center.

Source: https://www.frontpagemag.com/fpm/2021/08/progressives-green-energy-boondoggle-based-fantasy-bruce-thornton/

Follow Middle East and Terrorism on Twitter

Joe Biden 'put his foot on the neck' of the energy industry, now he wants more oil: Salena Zito - Michael Quinlan

 

​ by Michael Quinlan

The Biden administration asked OPEC countries to increase their oil production in order to lower US energy costs

Biden wants the Middle East to pump more oil as he crushes domestic drilling

Washington Examiner [WHAT] Selena Zito discusses Biden's comments on oil drilling on 'Tucker Carlson Tonight'

Salena Zito, a political reporter at the Washington Examiner, said she was befuddled that President Joe Biden would call on OPEC to produce more oil while gas prices soar in the U.S.

Zito, who was a guest on "Tucker Carlson Tonight" Wednesday, asked why the Biden administration was now sounding the alarm about fast-rising energy prices after the president "put his foot on the neck" of the oil and gas industry day one in office.

"The energy industry in the United States has been one of the most robust sectors in our economy, leading right before the pandemic, we produced more oil than any other country in the world and we were self-sufficient in that area," Zito said. 

He remarks came after Jake Sullivan, Biden's national security adviser, said in a statement released by the White House that OPEC's agreed-upon production increases are "simply not enough" to support global recovery from the pandemic, and said the nations needed to "do more to support the recovery." 

 

She said that the energy industry created jobs across the U. S., and called it "curious" that the Biden administration would ask OPEC to produce more oil while limiting its production in the U.S. 

"Not only was that a job creator, and not only just directly within the energy industry but also the downstream industries that support it and the communities that then thrive on it and the school districts that benefit from it," she said. "But it also was very important in national security, which is why I thought it was curious today the national security head was telling, essentially begging the OPEC countries to produce more oil."

Zito also noted that this was just the most recent example of Biden's history of harming the U.S. oil industry. 

"The energy industry, Joe Biden has put his foot on the next since day one and there is no exaggeration in that statement, from his executive orders on the Keystone Pipeline to halting and/or pausing production on federal lands with fracking in New Mexico and also oil production in Louisiana, he has impacted lives, American lives profoundly right there."

 

Michael Quinlan is a reporter and video producer at FoxNews.com.

Source: https://www.foxnews.com/media/joe-biden-energy-industry-more-oil-salena-zito

Follow Middle East and Terrorism on Twitter

Mark Dice Video: Arrest Americans for Questioning the 2020 Election? - Mark Dice

 

​ by Mark Dice

For the Left, banning Trump supporters on social media isn't enough.

 


Video commentator Mark Dice traveled to San Diego, California to conduct a shocking experiment: asking random Americans if they’ll sign a petition supporting the arrest of Trump supporters who believe Democrats stole the 2020 election.

Don't miss this disturbing short video below:

 

Mark Dice

Source: https://www.frontpagemag.com/fpm/2021/08/dice-video-they-want-arrest-americans-questioning-frontpage-editors/

Follow Middle East and Terrorism on Twitter

A Racial Reckoning for the Democrats - Deborah Bucknam

 

​ by Deborah Bucknam

The Democrat party has never shed its racist past.

Vermont Democrat Party chair Bruce Olsson published a commentary recently proclaiming yet again that Republicans are "racist." This is particularly rich since the Democrat party is the oldest and most enduring racist political party in history, and its racism continues to this day.  Here are the facts:

The Democrat Party was founded in 1828. Its first national party platform, ratified during the 1840 Presidential election, stated: “ that all efforts by abolitionists or others, made to induce congress to interfere with questions of slavery… are calculated to lead to the most alarming and dangerous consequences, and that all such efforts have an inevitable tendency to diminish the happiness of the people… and ought not to be countenanced by any friend to our political institutions.”

The message was clear:  the Democrat Party did not consider Black Americans to be “people”  deserving of “happiness.”

That same language was in every national Democrat party platform for the next 16 years. 

Democrat party leaders acted on their racist principles, committing high treason against their country and their fellow Americans between 1861-1865 in order to preserve the system of Black human bondage. 

In 1868, the  Democrat Party platform urged amnesty for the traitors who, during the Civil War, killed hundreds of thousands of Americans for the purpose of preserving slavery. The platform also called for “the abolition of the Freedmen's Bureau; and all political instrumentalities designed to secure negro supremacy”:

In 1904, seventy-six years after its founding,  the Democrat party’s platform complained about the Republican platform:

“The race question has brought countless woes to this country. The calm wisdom of the American people should see to it that it brings no more.

To revive the dead and hateful race and sectional animosities in any part of our common country means confusion, distraction of business, and the reopening of wounds now happily healed.  We therefore deprecate and condemn the Bourbon-like selfish, and narrow spirit of the recent Republican Convention at Chicago which sought to kindle anew the embers of racial and sectional strife, and we appeal from it to the sober common sense and patriotic spirit of the American people.”

The Republican party’s “hateful” rhetoric in their party platform that the Democrats condemned?  Here it is:

“We demand equal justice for all men, without regard to race or color; we declare once more, and without reservation, for the enforcement in letter and spirit of the Thirteenth, Fourteenth and Fifteenth amendments to the Constitution which were designed for the protection and advancement of the negro, and we condemn all devices that have for their real aim his disfranchisement for reasons of color alone, as unfair, un-American and repugnant to the Supreme law of the land.”

Throughout most of the 20th century, Democrats condoned  or excused policies of apartheid and disenfranchisement of Black Americans.  Senate Democrats successfully filibustered a Republican led anti-lynching bill in 1934, and a Republican-led effort to ban the poll tax in 1940.  At the time, the poll tax was so effective  in the American South that  only 3% of Black Americans were registered to vote there. Elected Democrats fought tooth and nail against anti-racist legislation, filibustering the Civil Rights Act of 1964, the Voting Rights Act of 1965, and engaging in so-called “massive resistance” against school integration into the early 1970s. A century and half of racist policies vigorously supported  by Democrat party leaders -- no other political party in history comes close. 

Olsson’s commentary included the perennial claim that Republican President  Richard Nixon’s “Southern Strategy” -- an effort to bring two-party rule to the South in the 1960s -- was racist.  I lived in Tidewater Virginia in the late 1960s.  Coming from New England, I was shocked  at the abject poverty of Black American families and the rigid segregation of virtually all  institutions there, despite the heavy federal military presence.  The South was truly, as one historian put it, a third-world country in a first-world nation.  Since the successful Republican Southern strategy,  the South is no longer a third-world country, but a first-world economic powerhouse.  And today, the South is more integrated than the northern cities run by Democrat machines. Some “racist” strategy.   

The Democrat party has never shed its racist past.  Today the party fights vigorously against school choice and voter ID laws, both overwhelmingly supported by minority communities.  Its leaders support abandoning crime-ridden Black communities by its “defund the police” movement.  It zealously supports expensive and unreliable “renewable” energy which hurts the poor and minorities, and its environmental land use policies are the equivalent of yesterday’s restrictive covenants that redlined minorities.  The Democrats’ latest racist push is critical race theory, which denigrates the courage, sacrifice and enormous achievements of Black Americans, while pushing for resegregation through so-called “affinity groups.”  As they say, a tiger doesn’t change its stripes. 

It’s time for a racial reckoning.  Democrats insist on apologies and accountability from the rest of us.  Democrats must take their own advice and own up to their own endemic racism. Then perhaps real racial healing can take place.

Image: Public Domain

To comment, you can find the MeWe post for this article here.

 

Deborah Bucknam

Source: https://www.americanthinker.com/articles/2021/08/a_racial_reckoning_for_the_democrats.html

Follow Middle East and Terrorism on Twitter

Climate Scientists Admit Exaggerated Warming - Vijay Jayaraj and E. Calvin Beisner

 

​ by Vijay Jayaraj and E. Calvin Beisner

Far too many scientists have been afraid to test climate doomsday narratives.

Last week, a group of scientists sent shock waves through the climate-science community. They boldly pointed out that current climate models exaggerate greenhouse warming.

In other words, they confirmed what climate skeptics have been arguing all along: that most computer climate models forecast unrealistic warming -- warming not observed anywhere in the real world.

Could this be a turning point for climate science? Has the hitherto staunch resistance to any kind of scrutiny regarding the dangerous warming narrative come to an end?

Scientific Method

Science is not a body of facts. It is a method of finding facts -- a method that is inherently skeptical. Not cynically skeptical, but humbly skeptical. It insists, as the motto of the Royal Society, nullius in verba, roughly translated “take nobody’s word for it,” that a scientist’s every claim be tested -- over and over and over. Thus, as the philosopher of science Robert K. Merton put it in 1938, “Most institutions demand unqualified faith; but the institution of science makes skepticism a virtue.”

A scientific hypothesis is carefully studied and checked against available evidence. The process of establishing a scientific truth involves the scientific community’s continuous effort to falsify it until so many such efforts have failed that the community provisionally accepts it -- with emphasis on provisionally.

In the age of celebrity culture, though, people easily assume that theories celebrated scientists -- or large numbers of scientists, or scientists associated with government authorities -- embrace are above challenge. Yet even theories universally embraced (for example, that continents don’t move, or that all ulcers are caused by excess stomach acid arising from too-acidic foods or anxiety) are not immune from new challenges or improvements and have been discarded.

Even the most celebrated scientists have been wrong. As EarthSky editor Deborah Byrd notes,

Einstein’s [General] Theory of Relativity implied that the universe must either be expanding or contracting. But Einstein himself rejected this notion in favor of the accepted idea that the universe was stationary and had always existed. When [Edwin] Hubble presented his evidence [the red shift] of the expansion of the universe, Einstein embraced the idea. He called his adherence to the old idea “my greatest blunder.”

It is now understood that the universe is constantly expanding.

Today, climate science finds itself in turmoil. Theories of catastrophic global warming driven by carbon dioxide emissions have long escaped careful scrutiny -- just as the theories of acid-caused ulcers and stable continents long did.

Climate Scientists: Yes, the Models are Wrong

Some climate scientists, like Roy W. Spencer and Judith Curry, point out that many warming theories depend on computer models that are badly flawed. If the empirical, observational evidence -- which Nobel Prize-winning physicist Richard Feynman called “the key to science” -- doesn’t keep these theories standing, what does? It appears that it’s the veneer of authority embodied in the United Nations’ Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC).

However, now scientists deeply embedded in the IPCC have admitted that the models exaggerate warming. They raise concerns about the implausibility of the exaggerated warming levels.

Science noted, “But as climate scientists face this alarming reality, the climate models that help them project the future have grown a little too alarmist. Many of the world’s leading models are now projecting warming rates that most scientists, including the modelmakers themselves, believe are implausibly fast.”

These new admissions reaffirm findings in 2014 and 2019 that most models exaggerate warming -- though the evidence is that they exaggerate not “a little” but a lot.

Scientists identified these unrealistic exaggerations by comparing model performance with real-world temperature data. A study published in 2020 analyzed 38 Coupled Model Intercomparison Project Version 6 (CMIP6) models and concluded, “For lower-troposphere and midtroposphere layers both globally and in the tropics, all 38 models overpredict warming in every target observational analog, in most cases significantly so, and the average differences between models and observations are statistically significant.”

Thus, solid empirical evidence shows that belief in dangerous greenhouse warming is unwarranted, based on faulty computer climate models.

That scientists working within the IPCC now acknowledge models’ errors could be a first step for climate science’s return to normalcy -- that is, to the skepticism that is a hallmark of science -- after decades of adherence to the doomsday narrative.

But there are obstacles in the way. The same Science article that reported the IPCC scientists’ admission that the models run hot also quoted NASA Goddard Institute for Space Studies Director Gavin Schmidt as saying, “It’s become clear over the last year or so that we can’t avoid this” -- a slip that suggests that he and others have, contrary to the skepticism inherent in genuine science, been trying to avoid it for a long time. So long as that mentality prevails, “climate science” will fall short of the true measure of science: honest, humble self-skepticism.

It remains to be seen how the UN will approach this complex and delicate matter. Bold, outright admission could deflate public trust and so undermine the agenda of global “decarbonization.”

Nevertheless, the admission gives hope to climate science’s future. Far too many scientists have been afraid to test climate doomsday narratives. This might give them courage.

Honest scientists follow the evidence wherever it leads. But to stand up and own the truth, scientists must also be freed from political pressure. Funding for the climate-science community flows largely through entities that seek to gain politically from climate fear. This must stop, and academic institutions must no longer function as public relations agencies for fearmongering political narratives.

Image: Dragons Flight

To comment, you can find the MeWe post for this article here.

 

Vijay Jayaraj (M.Sc., Environmental Science, University of East Anglia, England), is a Research Contributor for the Cornwall Alliance for the Stewardship of Creation and resides in Bengaluru, India. E. Calvin

Source: https://www.americanthinker.com/articles/2021/08/climate_scientists_admit_exaggerated_warming_.html

Follow Middle East and Terrorism on Twitter

Fed up with Fatah's corruption, Palestinians protest across West Bank - JNS and ILH Staff

 

​ by JNS and ILH Staff

The populace, local leaders and academics have voiced disappointment with the party, originally founded as a national liberation movement.

 

Concerns rise as PA mulls canceling elections
Palestinian President Mahmoud Abbas | File photo: AP/Mohamad Torokman

Ongoing protests in recent weeks in the West Bank against the Palestinian Authority over the killing of opposition activist Nizar Banat by security forces have led to heavy criticism of the PA for suppression.

According to a report by the Middle East Media Research Institute published on Tuesday, the protests have expressed deep dissatisfaction over ongoing corruption and the absence of democracy. The unrest followed the decision this spring by PA head Mahmoud Abbas to postpone elections out of a fear of losing to other factions.

Denouncing the authorities, protesters have chanted for the "overthrow of the regime."

In response, the PA has launched counterprotests where Fatah members claimed the opposition is "a coup attempt led by Hamas." For example, Fatah's deputy chairman, Mahmoud Al-Aloul, said at a Ramallah rally: "Don't provoke Fatah, for we will not show mercy to anyone!"

In response, according to the report, the Palestinian press has strongly criticized Fatah's handling of the Banat incident and the conduct of the movement's officials.

Articles by academics and intellectuals, as well as by current and former politicians, have voiced disappointment that Fatah, which was originally founded as a national liberation movement, has become a ruling party that they say "blindly defends the PA against legitimate criticism."

 

JNS and ILH Staff

Source: https://www.israelhayom.com/2021/08/12/fed-up-with-fatahs-corruption-palestinians-protest-across-west-bank/

Follow Middle East and Terrorism on Twitter

Germany Will Spend $41 Million to ‘Discover’ Causes of Present-Day Anti-Semitism - Hugh Fitzgerald

 

​ by Hugh Fitzgerald

Will the "investigation" include the Qur’an and Hadith?

 

 

Yes, it’s a puzzlement, all right. What makes so many people – mainly Palestinians and Turks in Germany, Palestinians and Moroccans in the Netherlands, Palestinians and Egyptians in Italy, Palestinians and Pakistanis in Great Britain, Palestinians and North Africans in France – so full of hatred for Jews and the Jewish state? What moves Ilhan Omar, and Rashida Tlaib, and Nihad Awad, and Linda Sarsour, to come down so hard on “the Jews”? This question requires, the Germans believe, generously subsidized deep research, and they are – it’s understandable, given their regrettable past — eager to fund it. And that is what they have just announced they will embark upon such research, as discussed here: “German Government to Spend $40 Million on Researching What Fuels Antisemitism, Racism,” by Sharon Wrobel, Algemeiner, August 4, 2021.

The German government will spend more than $40 million (35 million euros) to fund research projects into the causes of antisemitism, hatred and racism as part of a wider effort to fight the growing phenomena, the Federal Ministry of Education and Research announced on Wednesday.
 
“It is more than shameful that Jews in Germany feel threatened,” said Germany’s Education and Research Minister Anja Karliczek. “Antisemitism and racism have no place in Germany. They are poison and a big threat for social cohesion. We must fight this poison with all our determination. But we can only fight what we understand.”
 
A number of academic researchers on the subject of antisemitism will be funded with a total of $14 million over a period of four years. Additional funding of $27 million will be granted to projects to combat right-wing extremism and racism.”
Why is the government going to spend twice as much on “right-wing extremism” as on “antisemitism”? Isn’t antisemitism supposed to be the main subject of study? And isn’t left-wing antisemitism, of the Antifa, woke, Black-Lives-Matter variety, a much greater problem in Europe today than “right-wing extremism”?
“We want to expand our knowledge base in order to effectively combat racism and antisemitism,” Karliczek continued. “The research projects we fund will contribute to this understanding and help develop suitable measures to prevent and combat antisemitism in education, civil society and politics.”
Do you think any research project that proposes studying the Qur’an and hadith as sources of antisemitism has a chance of being funded? Don’t be silly. What about a proposed comparative study, “Antisemitism in Western Christendom and the Lands of Islam?  Not on your life. What about a study of antisemitism in schoolbooks used in Muslim countries? Nothing doing. Or a study of “Hajj Amin el-Husseini in Berlin, 1939-1945”? Out of the question. The German government wouldn’t like where any of this is going.
She added that the research groups will address questions including how antisemitism reaches children in schools, and what the public can do to immunize against online hate speech.
Here’s what the public can do. It can demand that governments no longer allow Big Tech – Facebook, Google, Twitter and so on – to police itself. These companies have shown an unwillingness to ban all expressions of antisemitism. That responsibility  must be taken away from them, and entrusted to a group that bases its banning of sites on whether they meet the IHRA definition of antisemitism.
The initiative will examine the dynamics and facets of antisemitism from different disciplinary perspectives and will include academics from theology, education, political science and law. Selected projects range from “antisemitism in online media” to “antisemitism in the context of the judiciary,” “Christian signatures of antisemitism,” and the prevention of antisemitism in education. Jewish perspectives will be systematically included, the government said.
“Christian signatures of antisemitism,” but not a hint that “Muslim antisemitism” will be studied. Why is that, do you think?
“To build the basis of our actions, reliable knowledge of the current manifestations of antisemitism, right-wing extremism and racism is indispensable,” said Felix Klein, Germany’s Federal Commissioner to combat antisemitism and promote Jewish life.
Again, the missing words are “Muslim.” “Muslim antisemitism,” “Islamic extremism,” “Muslim racism.” “Islamic racism.”
“The current funding guideline for research on antisemitism supports a wide range of research projects. Together with the funding guideline for right-wing extremism and racism, this gives us a clearer picture of these phenomena and their connections,” he said.
But even without needing to burn the midnight oil in study, without organizing conferences where scholars can meet to solemnly discuss what-oh-what could those “causes” of a sharp rise in antisemitism could be, and then to prepare detailed reports for the German government that will finally enlighten us all, I think we all know the answer – the hate whose name we dare not speak — don’t we? Let’s just cut to the chase. The fons et origo of today’s antisemitism, which is displayed overwhelmingly by Muslims, are the Qur’an and the hadith. Here are Qur’anic passages about the Jews, as usefully compiled by Robert Spencer:
 
“The Qur’an depicts the Jews as inveterately evil and bent on destroying the wellbeing of the Muslims. They are the strongest of all people in enmity toward the Muslims (5:82); as fabricating things and falsely ascribing them to Allah (2:79; 3:75, 3:181); claiming that Allah’s power is limited (5:64); loving to listen to lies (5:41); disobeying Allah and never observing his commands (5:13); disputing and quarreling (2:247); hiding the truth and misleading people (3:78); staging rebellion against the prophets and rejecting their guidance (2:55); being hypocritical (2:14, 2:44); giving preference to their own interests over the teachings of Muhammad (2:87); wishing evil for people and trying to mislead them (2:109); feeling pain when others are happy or fortunate (3:120); being arrogant about their being Allah’s beloved people (5:18); devouring people’s wealth by subterfuge (4:161); slandering the true religion and being cursed by Allah (4:46); killing the prophets (2:61); being merciless and heartless (2:74); never keeping their promises or fulfilling their words (2:100); being unrestrained in committing sins (5:79); being cowardly (59:13-14); being miserly (4:53); being transformed into apes and pigs for breaking the Sabbath (2:63-65; 5:59-60; 7:166); and more.”
 
Nothing further needs to be researched. Give that man $14 million. Or the whole 35 million euros. And spare us all the simpsonesque – O.J. rather than Homer – attempts to find the “real killer.” We know.
 

Hugh Fitzgerald

Source: https://www.frontpagemag.com/fpm/2021/08/germany-will-spend-41-million-dollars-discover-hugh-fitzgerald/

Follow Middle East and Terrorism on Twitter

The Abraham Accords: For the generations to come - Houda Nonoo

 

​ by Houda Nonoo

On the eve of the one-year anniversary of the accords, I am now just as thrilled as I was on September 15, 2020, when I sat on the White House lawn as a member of the Bahraini delegation.

The signing of the Abraham Accords will no doubt be one of the biggest Middle East milestones in our lifetime and as we celebrate its first anniversary, it is an opportunity to reflect on this auspicious time for the Kingdom of Bahrain, and the region more broadly. It is also the time to look forward to the limitless opportunities ahead of us.

As one of the few indigenous Jews in the Arabian Gulf, it is particularly meaningful to me. As a citizen of this region, I am filled with excitement to see the construction of a new Middle East, one focused on coexistence and prosperity.

I would like to thank His Majesty, King Hamad bin Isa Al Khalifa and His Royal Highness, Prince Salman Bin Hamad Al Khalifa, the Crown Prince and Prime Minister, for their leadership, vision, and courage to lead our nation proudly and boldly into the future through the signing of the Abraham Accords.

These Accords represent a promise that the leaders in the region have made to build a better life with security and opportunity for all of us and for future generations still to come.

As we approach the first anniversary of the Accords, I am just as excited now as I was when sitting on the White House lawn on September 15, 2020, as a member of Foreign Minister Dr. Abdullatif bin Rashid Al Zayani's delegation.

As we embark on a new era in the Bahrain – Israel relationship, it is important to remember that at the core of this agreement is the desire to create a new Middle East, one built on peace and prosperity for all. I believe that the growing partnerships between Bahrain and Israel, will lead to sustainable peace in the region.

 

Houda Nonoo

Source: https://www.israelhayom.com/opinions/the-abraham-accords-for-the-generations-to-come/

Follow Middle East and Terrorism on Twitter

60% of Jews in Queensland have experienced antisemitism, watchdog says - JNS and ILH Staff

 

​ by JNS and ILH Staff

Data gathered by the Executive Council of Australian Jewry showed that the number of anti-Semitic abuses reported this year has already matched the total number of incidents from 2020.

 

60% of Jews in Queensland have experienced antisemitism, watchdog says
Antisemitism is again on the rise globally | File photo: Reuters

A Jewish group in Queensland, Australia, is advocating for outlawing displays of Nazi flags and for old laws to be updated following an uptick in antisemitism among the local Jewish community, reported the Brisbane Times.

Six in 10 members of the Queensland Jewish community said in a recent survey conducted by the Queensland Jewish Board of Deputies that they have experienced antisemitism.

"Of those Jews in Queensland who experienced antisemitism, half were either abused, harassed, intimidated or bullied simply because they are Jewish and, distressingly, many of these incidents occur in the workplace," said Jason Steinberg, vice president of the Queensland Jewish Board of Deputies.

"Fifteen percent of Queensland Jews also reported hate-fueled incidents that related to Israel and/or Zionism. We have also seen an increase in activity by white-supremacist, neo-Nazi and other far-right extremist groups whose members seem to act with impunity, as well as anti-Israel activists targeting local Jews."

He called on Queensland to make it a criminal offense if someone's behavior or published material was likely to intimidate others or incite harassment based on race, religion, sexuality or gender. He proposed penalties of up to 14 years in jail.

"The current law is 30 years old and is outdated," he said. "We are also calling on the state government to ban the public display and sale of items that include Nazi symbols, such as the swastika, which are used by racists with impunity. This will empower the police to remove and confiscate these items and be a useful tool in countering the proliferation of extremist ideologies."

Data gathered by the Executive Council of Australian Jewry showed that the number of anti-Semitic abuses reported in Queensland this year has already matched the total number of incidents from 2020, according to the Brisbane Times.

JNS.org contributed to this report.

 

JNS and ILH Staff

Source: https://www.israelhayom.com/2021/08/12/60-of-jews-in-queensland-have-experienced-antisemitism-watchdog-says/

Follow Middle East and Terrorism on Twitter