The Prince: Angelo Codevilla, 1943-2021

America lost a great patriot and one of its foremost public intellectuals yesterday with the untimely death of Angelo Codevilla at the age of 78.  Professor Codevilla, whose career spanned the Navy, the foreign service, the intelligence community, academe, think tanks, the blogosphere, and the literary world, was one of the the sharpest and shrewdest observers of the contemporary political scene -- hardly surprising, since the Italian-born scholar produced a notable 1997 translation of Machiavelli's The Prince. 

"Wisdom consists of knowing how to distinguish the nature of trouble, and in choosing the lesser evil."

The core of his appeal -- for his students, for those who heard him speak, for those of us who appeared with him on panels and at public events and had the thankless task of trying to match both wits and breadth of knowledge with him -- was Angelo's ability to cut quickly to the heart of any matter, instantly bolstering his fluent and elegant arguments with examples from history both ancient and modern. 

It is therefore, with profound sadness, that we present what might be the last piece he ever wrote, which will appear in Against the Great Reset, a collection of some 16 essays by such luminaries as Prof. Codevilla, Conrad Black, Janice Fiamengo, Michael Anton, David Goldman, Roger Kimball, Victor Davis Hanson, Alberto Mingardi, Salvatore Babones, Martin Hutchinson, Jeremy Black, Harry Stein, Richard Fernandez, and others still to come. I have the honor of editing the essays, as well as contributing one myself, along with an overall introduction. We hope to announce the publisher soon. 

What follows is an excerpt from "Resetting the Educational Reset." Although its topic is necessarily specific to the parlous state of our educational system, it brims with characteristic aperçus, sparkles with the joy of intellectual combat, and positively revels in its defense of Western civilization. No happier warrior lived, fighting on the side of the angels -- and now, surely, dwelling among them.

The closer one looks at education today, the more one sees that the dumbing down and perversion of America to which people object most strongly is the continuation of a century-old decay in our civilization. Problems with education bespeak civilizational ones, of which the phenomenon of Davos Man is but one manifestation.

Any civilization is the totality of the language, habits and ideas in which people live and move – the human reality that defines their practical limits. To see how grossly unequal to one another civilizations are, it is enough to glance at how much or little understanding of reality the languages they speak contain – what any given language enables, or not. We are accustomed to Greek, Latin, English, French, Italian, German, etc. with their massive dictionaries, full of definitions, pronouns, tenses, moods and concepts, all tied together by grammar that flows from logic. When we speak these languages correctly, we hardly realize that we are wielding powerful tools of reason, developed over thousands of years.

But acquaintance with the languages that most of mankind speak shows that most contain few well-defined words, and almost no grammar. Little intellection. Almost no reason. Sometimes they lack even the plural. Here we must term those who speak a form of English, French, etc. that they barely grasp as superficially civilized, if at all. Monkeys with keyboards.

Without going to any depth in the debate between the human possibilities that nature and nurture provide, enough experiments have been carried out that show that nature does not limit babies born into primitive tribes to lives near the level of quadrupeds, just as it does not endow the offspring of Ph.ds’s with high I.Qs. Quantification is unnecessary for us to know that much of civilization depends on the habits of body, heart, and mind into which we are civilized.

We may never have heard of Plato’s prescription that the body and mind are best trained for reason by physical discipline, that the right kind of music enhances these and the wrong kind hinders it. We may no longer play musical instruments as much as earlier generations.  And yet all who are part of Western civilization carry with us, among other things, a musical heritage based on mathematics and melody that also sets us apart from other civilizations.

What, then has education been doing to our civilization? The very concept of IQ, of Intelligence Quotient, of the Stanford-Binet test and things similar, is, as its critics argue, a cultural construct – less a measure of potential than of capacities already developed. No surprise that persons growing up in environments that stimulate and enable the development of human possibilities do in fact develop more of these. Some studies suggest that the complex of what each generation conveyed to the next made those generations more intellectually/morally potent than their predecessors though the early twentieth century, but that this process has reversed itself over about a half century and average IQ has dropped by some 14 points. The decline seems to have come at the top of our civilizational pyramid. Speculation about the causes is less relevant than noting the effects.

But the deepest philosophical causes are not in dispute. After Descartes’ Discourse on Method reduced reality into something wholly comprehensible by truncating it, the very peaks of Western philosophy reversed the relationship between reality and the observer. Kant and Hegel’s “idealism” is neither more nor less than the further affirmation that the mind, for its own sovereign convenience, can take possession of what it perceives. From these philosophical peaks, any number of streams of far less sophisticated thought have flowed that effectively and explicitly place the mind’s product under the sway of man’s will, and hence of man’s various interests.

The intellectual mechanism is straightforward: presume to abolish the objective status of what you see, and presume to retake possession of what you then suppose to be reality, based on what matters to you.

From Ludwig Feuerbach’s injunction to worship Christianity as our own creation, to Karl Marx’s assertion of sovereignty over the mind’s products as “superstructural,” to class interest, to Sigmund Freud’s assertion of perceptions as reflections of sexuality, the main streams of latter-day high Western thought have de-valued reason and reality in favor of all manner of self-indulgence. Today, colleges teach students to disparage reference to facts and logic as “logism.”

Loosening our bounds to reality is attractive also because calling things by whatever names serves our immediate purpose liberates us from the hard work of understanding things not of our making, and gives us the illusion of mastery over our environment. It is especially attractive to those who have power over others, because it frees them from having to persuade the rest of humanity. For society’s mob of lazy under-performers, pleasing the leaders is an easier way of securing one’s place than competing for merit. Anyhow: intellectual/moral deterioration has ever been an easier sell than the hard acquisition of skills and virtues.

In our time as ever, there does seem to be a natural concurrence of interest in imprecision  and lack of discipline between those who are happy enough to be barbarians and the despots who naturally dominate barbarians.

*****

Cutting the life support of higher-ed institutions requires exposing how little – if any – good they do by comparison with the price and opportunity costs of attending them. A little political action can go a long way in this regard by imposing on them the same requirements for transparency about the effects they have on those they serve as apply to other providers of goods and services.

Reputation, prestige, is literally the main product that they dispense. What do you get for four years at Old State U.? What about at Old Ivy? These questions deserve empirical answers. Institutions advertise the percentage of students they admit, and sometimes the entrants’ test scores, implying that they select the best and make them better. But the edu-class rejects categorically comparing students’ test scores (absolute and/or relative) before and after they attend. The rejection’s vehemence has increased as the amount of study required for graduation has fallen. Legislating transparency in educational outcomes is the most potent weapon against scam.

Fact-based challenges to established colleges’ hazy claims to beneficence can also help those who start up replacement institutions. What if, as is entirely possible, test figures bear out that the average student is not better able to think after four years at Old State or Old Ivy than before?  Could it be that they did not demand more of the student? There is plenty of evidence that they demanded less than in previous decades. The new colleges can credibly pledge to improve students at the very least by requiring more work of them.

More important but beyond empirical demonstration is that the substance of what is being taught, the manner and ethos of education, especially as it flows down from the peaks of academe, have corrupted – are corrupting – America. All manner of corruption is so immanent from America’s commanding heights on down as to make superfluous the presentation of facts and arguments about it.

Whoever would reset education in America from its current path must begin by noting and denouncing its corruption of our civilization. Each new generation internalizes civilization as it does its maternal language. Restoring the integrity of the civilization into which we educate succeeding generations requires educators to pay attention to its language’s every word.

The Coming Viral Dictatorship

A pivotal feature of dictatorial regimes is the institutional lie, expressed as an unfounded message of millennial hope, an ever-changing set of legislated policies, and the tendency of authoritarian leaders to violate their own axioms and edicts. We see this happening before our eyes as a Covid-19 tyranny takes root on our own soil.

The manifold inconsistencies and deceptions that circulate regarding the draconian mandates and coercive measures imposed by Big Government to combat the Covid pandemic should by now have alerted the public to their suspicious nature. We have observed the extent to which these ordinances are regularly flouted by the authorities, who have been seen without their masks, disregarding social distancing rules, and travelling during lockdowns. Such exemptions are obviously a privilege reserved only to the elites, who do not scruple to lecture us on the current proprieties.

One popular slogan that we meet everywhere, on radio and TV, on the Internet, and emblazoned on ubiquitous signage, is particularly irritating: “We’re All In This Together.” Clearly, we are not. While small business owners and entrepreneurs struggle with bankruptcy as their establishments are closed down, Big Box stores operate at full capacity, teachers retain handsome salaries while refusing to enter their classrooms, government personnel continue to be paid in absentia, and politicians suffer no loss of ample remuneration.

This means you.

Weddings, church services, funerals, social gatherings, holiday celebrations and anti-lockdown protests are either curtailed or banned to prevent proximity transmission of the virus; BLM demonstrations involving thousands of people cheek-by-jowl agitating for “social justice” are permitted and encouraged. Doctors are here to serve their patients; now many have embraced telemedicine, which does not impact their fees as it does their effectiveness. Diagnosis at a distance is not reliable medicine, though it is lucrative medicine. The overall hypocrisy that confronts us at every level of political, corporate and professional society is so blatant as to be unbelievable—except it is entirely believable. We are manifestly not in this all together, not by a long shot.

Another sedative to which we are constantly exposed is the official platitude that the mandates under which we malinger are intended “to protect public health and safety.” The collateral effects of this faux campaign have, in fact, endangered public health and safety. The category of “excess deaths” owing to delayed medical procedures for cancer, Alzheimer's, heart ailments and diabetes, among other conditions, including critical stress, depressive suicides, and adverse reactions and deaths linked to the Covid vaccines now arguably surpass Covid morbidity numbers—which themselves appear to have been grossly inflated. Indeed, in a crowning irony, the virus may itself be “boosted” by iatrogenic interventions. One need only consult virologist and immunologist Robert Malone, the actual inventor of the mRNA vaccines, who warns against them as Covid-19 suppressants. 

We were assured that vaccine passports were the route to “public health and safety” and that life would soon be back to normal. Now triple vaxxing, masks and renewed lockdowns have become mandatory in many jurisdictions and nations. The temptation to blame and penalize the unvaccinated for any upsurge of “cases” is spreading and may easily translate into second-class status for the unvaccinated and a policy of forced internment. 

But who are the “unvaccinated”?  Israel’s Director of the Ziv Medical Center Dr. Salman Zarka admits that the definition is changing: “We are updating what it means to be vaccinated.” In the absence of a third jab (and counting), even the double-vaxxed fall into the category of “unvaccinated.” As Kit Knightly writes in off-guardian, “Israel is the petri dish”; if it works there, the rest of the world will follow suit. Of course, in another sense of the phrase, it doesn’t really “work there.” A multi-sourced chart published in the Financial Times, comparing over-vaxxed Israel to under-vaxxed Egypt, provides a sobering metric. Egypt is doing at least an order of magnitude better than Israel. Equally distressing, on August 22 West Virginia governor Jim Justice reported a 26 percent surge among the fully vaccinated and a 25 percent increase in vaccinated deaths. This surely is not a one-off.

Where do you think you're going?

It should be obvious by this time that we are dealing with a vast shell game. In an open letter to the Canadian Minister of Health, McGill University theology professor Douglas Farrow argues, correctly, that vaccine mandates are incoherent. That is surely the right word. Masks were supposed to keep us safe. They didn’t do very well, so the first jab was introduced, which should have offered immunity. Then came a second jab, followed by a third and counting. Then came the vaccine passports. Meanwhile, as noted, double-and-triple-jabbed Israelis are still fighting infection and transmission and have now even been refused entry to Portugal and to open, prosperous Sweden.

It is no surprise, at least among the concerned, that distrust is growing of our health authorities, the political class and the collusive “misleadia,” assiduously promoting a medical dogma that is plainly muddled, deceptive and hypocritical. It is also, to put it bluntly, totalitarian.

The next step is the construction of quarantine or internment camps, as currently planned in Australia. Similarly, in the U.S. the CDC has proposed a “shielding approach” that would establish “a group of shelters such as schools, community buildings within a camp/sector…where high-risk individuals (the unvaccinated) are physically isolated together.” As if this weren’t plain enough, the proposal states that “High-risk individuals would be temporarily relocated to safe or ‘green zones’ established at the household, neighborhood, camp/sector or community level… They would have minimal contact with family members and other low-risk residents.” 

Meanwhile, the National Guard is in process of hiring “internment resettlement specialists” to supervise detention operations and “provide guidance to individual prisoners.” It is not clear from the explanatory description what this program precisely entails, but it doesn’t augur well. On August 6, 2021, governor Bill Lee of Tennessee signed an executive order authorizing involuntary internment of targeted citizens, under the convenient designation of “regulatory flexibilities.”

Not to be outdone, the Department of Homeland Security claims that those resisting the vaccines pose a “potential terror threat.” If you oppose the vaccines, you are an “extremist.” The document is very clear: “These extremists may seek to exploit the emergence of COVID-19 variants by viewing the potential re-establishment of public health restrictions across the United States as a rationale to conduct attacks.” Bill HR 4980 currently before Congress would place unvaccinated persons on a No-Fly list and lead inexorably to a No-Buy gun control law. A No-Buy gun list would prevent people from arming themselves. As they say, you have been warned.

Welcome to Australia.

My own country of Canada marches in lockstep with the heavily mandated nations of Israel, the U.K. and, of course, Australia and parts of the U.S. According to NaturalNews, the Canadian government has ordered enough vaccines to inoculate every man, woman and child many times over for the next three years, having stockpiled 293 million doses for a population of 38 million. The report continues: Just months ago, the Covid-19 vaccines were hailed as a ‘miracle of science’ that were putting an ‘end to the pandemic’… But now the narrative has changed” and we can expect more censorship, travel restriction, contact tracing, deprivation of human rights, dodgy testing, and mask and vaccine mandates. The fear is that even supermarkets may eventually be placed off limits for the unvaccinated, forcing one to rely on doorstep deliveries. 

As we’ve seen, this despotic program is being implemented in the name of “protecting public health and safety.” It appears, rather, as if it is being put in practice to create a system of “vaccine enslavement” and authoritarian control. Our Prime Minister, after all, is on record as admiring the “basic dictatorship” of Communist China.

What next? One shudders to think. Where next? Who's next?

What'cha Gonna To Do When the Wind Don’t Blow?

I’ve often thought I should start a new kind of psychological therapy, one I call the Get Real School. Instead of listening to neurotics moan about their childhood toilet-training traumas, I’d have them discuss what their adult beliefs are, and we’d explore how sensible their concerns and plans are. If it took off, I’d expect that California’s and the European Union’s energy supplies  would benefit greatly from this therapy if only I could get their leaders into my office.

They have ignored utterly the need for energy reliability, discounted cost to consumers, overestimated the capacity of renewable energy, and underestimated energy demands. They  do so based  on the ridiculous concept that man can control the climate. To that end everything from cow flatulence to clean-burning natural gas must be stemmed in place of wind, sun and water. In the process, of course, they increase their own power over virtually every aspect of life within their domain.

It’s still mild in Europe right now, though winter is coming, a time when demand is always greater, and yet  even in a more benign fall there’s been a substantial shortage of energy and as a result an incredible increase in energy costs to consumers. 

To infinity and beyond!

Blame it on the North Sea winds which suddenly stopped blowing if you wish. I blame it on ludicrous energy policies. What do you do when the wind stops blowing (one-twenty fourth of its normal electrical production) and the windmills stand still? You rely on fossil fuels. To make up the shortfall, gas and coal-fired electrical producing plants are forced into play as backups.

British political geniuses counted on the wind farms to do away entirely with net carbon emissions by 2050. This may seem odd to officialdom’s deep thinkers, but just as man can’t control climate, so also he cannot control wind or sunshine or rainfall, either. Well, you might say, the U.K. is lucky to still have backup fuels to pick up the shortfall. But, no, the same central planning that counted on wind has also set up a system of purchasable carbon credits to offset the use of such fuels. Quite naturally, the price of those "credits" is soaring as the need for them increases. More sensible planners would have provided for suspension of the carbon-credit system when there’s an urgent need for them, but, of course, they did not.  

How substantial will the hit to the pockets of U.K. consumers be? At the moment electricity prices in the U.K. are seven times higher than they were last September -- up to $395 a megawatt hour for power to be dispatched the next day. France, Germany and the Netherlands are also seeing substantial energy cost increases. Here’s how this works:

Gas is in short supply right now and renewables aren’t pulling their expected share, so utilities must buy more coal, and when they do they have had to buy more emissions allowances as well. And the increased costs have to be passed on to consumers -- directly for electricity  (and indirectly through the higher costs of goods and services). So, wherever possible, energy producers  have returned to gas and that meant gas prices have also shot up. Still, they are able to generate some electricity using these backups right now. But, despite this experience, the U.K. demands that all coal plants must close by 2024. When and if they do, the situation will certainly be more dire.

At the moment, the only companies that profit from the shift to wind power are U.S. exporters of liquified natural gas and Russian gas exporters. This winter, if the North sea wind blows, they better pray it doesn’t at the same time freeze the windmills or blow them down.

Um... hello?

California is also suffering from an electricity shortfall.  And its plan is to allow more air pollution for 60 days. That state has been relying heavily on solar energy  and wind. It also relies on hydroelectric power but drought and wildfires have limited the capacity of that source. The summer heat increases demand for electricity. So much so, that the state predicts a shortfall sufficient to power 2.6 million homes in the coming months.

To avoid that, it has requested that six natural gas units throughout the state be permitted to operate at maximum capacity “notwithstanding air quality or other permit limitations.” It will certainly be ironic if we see that  closing some gas plants that operated under emission controls to save the environment now results in  greater emissions because renewables proved insufficient, and the remaining gas plants were allowed to operate outside emission controls. While it seems not to have considered the consequences of its closure of fossil fuel generating plants, California suddenly seems to have noticed a cost-benefit issue, arguing to Secretary of Energy Jennifer Granholm that the power outages posed “a greater risk to public health and safety” than the greater emissions. The request was granted September 10. Let’s see what happens after the 60-day reprieve is up and the rest of the state’s green energy plan is implemented.

 On a higher  political level than California and the U.K., the game continues. John Kerry, the U.S. "Climate Change" envoy has been shuttling back and forth to India and China, the world’s greatest producers of  carbon emissions in what is certain to prove a vain attempt to persuade them to shortchange their countries of vital reliable, affordable energy. At the E.U., despite rocketing carbon-offset prices due to the insufficiency of renewable resources to meet demand, their climate czar Frans Timmermans, the European Commission vice president, blathers on about that bloc cutting gas emissions “by at least 55 percent by 2030,” and offers up some big new thinking:

Even in Brussels there’s an occasional bright light. In this case it was Poland’s Anna Zalewska who noted citizens  unfortunately will “pay for the ambitions of the E.U.” And  the chair of the Parliamentary committee on the environment, who was all for the banning gas and diesel fueled cars, has contended that the notion of extending the carbon market to transport and buildings went too far. "Because we believe that the political cost is extremely high, and the climate impact is very low.”

What he’s really afraid of is massive social protests against such loony fiddling of something as basic to life as energy. And he should be. Winter’s just around the corner, European gas supplies are short and it’s a struggle, in any event, to get their older gas plants back on line. It may well prove that  a E.U. Christmas means there will either be  coal in the people’s electric plants or in the E.U. bigwigs' Christmas stockings.

But Is O'Toole Any Better?

The Canadian Federal election is taking place on September 20th, and it seems harder than usual to follow what is going on up there. Recent polling suggests that the Conservatives and Liberals are more or less neck-and-neck, with the NDP pulling in third as expected, but with a surprisingly strong 20 percent share of the projected vote. Why so close? Well, it's partly because of the nature of the contemporary Canadian electorate -- the 2019 election, at least by popular vote, was a nail-biter as well. But it is also likely because the basic positioning of the major parties are so similar that you'd need to be a scholastic philosopher to determine the difference between them.

This should come as no surprise as far as two of those parties are concerned. The brains behind current prime minister Justin Trudeau, knowing well that the resurgence of the NDP was key to Stephen Harper's electoral victories in the early aughts, have continued moving leftward to prevent Jagmeet Singh's iteration of the party from bringing about a similar result. And, anyway, two leftwing parties jockeying for position as the true party of the left is so commonplace as to be almost not worth commenting upon.

But a notionally right-of-center party doing so? That's the puzzler.

O'Toole: Maybe inject some principles while you're at it.

Erin O'Toole won last summer's race for Conservative leader running as "True Blue O'Toole," a patriotic military man who was going to take the fight to Justin Trudeau. But ever since, he's gone out of his way to remake the CPC in his own Red Tory image. According to Gary Mason, in a column entitled 'Erin O'Toole is changing Canadian conservatism as we know it,'

[B]ehind the scenes, there was always a plan to change the direction the party would head in during an election if [O'Toole] became leader – the direction many believed offered the only path to victory.

Mason continually praises O'Toole's sagacity in eschewing the positions of his base on issues like abortion, guns, conscience protections for healthcare workers, and environmentalism; and his overall willingness to adopt stances more acceptable in polite society. Says Mason, a "Conservative Party headed by Erin O’Toole would be in step with the times. Full stop." But it's striking that the supposedly up-to-date positions he describes, purportedly to appeal to the same type of alienated, working-class voters who made Brexit a reality, are in fact the characteristic views of the Laurentian Elite.

Peter MacKay famously blamed the party's loss in 2019 on the "stinking albatross" of social conservatism hanging about its neck, but for Erin O'Toole the albatross seems to be conservatism itself.

Environmentalism is our focus here at The Pipeline, and on that score O'Toole's drift has been particularly egregious. One of the Tory insiders that Mason quotes praising the party's lurch leftward is Ken Boessenkool, who has been arguing for years that the only way conservatives will ever again take power is if they sell out Canada's oil and gas producing provinces by embracing carbon taxation and other extreme (and pointless) regulations in order to win over voters in the Greater Toronto Area (GTA). O'Toole has taken this advice, and the advice of other Tory insiders, like Mark Cameron, former head of the environmentalist pressure group Canadians for Clean Prosperity, now a deputy minister in the government of Alberta.

During his leadership campaign O'Toole signed a pledge saying,

I, Erin O’Toole, promise that, if elected Prime Minister of Canada, I will: Immediately repeal the Trudeau carbon tax; and, reject any future national carbon tax or cap-and-trade scheme.

But after he'd won, O'Toole released a document entitled 'Secure the Environment: The Conservative Plan to Combat Climate Change,' which begins "Canada must not ignore the reality of climate change. It is already affecting our ecosystems, hurting our communities, and damaging our infrastructure."

To combat climate change, O'Toole promised that, should he form a government, he would 1) implement his own Carbon Tax, one that's less onerous than the Liberal version, but which could be increased if market conditions make doing so feasible. 2) "Finalize and improve" the Trudeau government's Clean Fuel Standard (also known as the second carbon tax), 3) enact an electric vehicle mandate and invest billions of tax-payer dollars in EV manufacture and infrastructure, which includes, 4) update the national building code such that all buildings will have "mandatory charging stations or wiring required for chargers", 5) reduce emissions in line with the Paris Climate Accords by 2030 and achieving Net-Zero emissions by 2050. And on and on.

That's not just a flip-flop, that's an atomic belly flop.

Coming your way, Canada.

But are these moves necessary to win? Mason quotes Howard Anglin, former Chief of Staff to both Harper and Jason Kenney, as saying "[t]he first challenge that any Canadian conservative party must confront is that Canada is not a conservative country." Maybe. But I can't help hearing in that sentiment the predictions of impending "permanent Democratic majorities" we've been hearing about in the U.S. for the last 40 years. My own theory is that Canadians are rarely presented with a serious conservative alternative to the Trudeaupianism they've been force-fed since the '60s.

Here's just one example of how the Tories might have approached this election differently -- Dan McTeague of Canadians for Affordable Energy recently pointed out that the exploding price of housing has been a major issue in this election, but there has been little mention of the other factors making life in Canada increasingly expensive.

Once someone has a place to live, they are going to need to cool it in the summer and heat it in the winter. They will need electricity to cook and store their food... All of this, of course, takes energy... Every major Canadian political party is committed to at least Net Zero emissions by the year 2050. I have written extensively about how this leads to skyrocketing energy prices. Yet, amid all the talk about housing affordability no one in Canada seems to be saying much about energy affordability.

Policies like carbon taxation are always sold by the Liberals as affecting "Big Polluter" mega-corporations, but in fact they do real harm to ordinary people, both when they 're hit with the tax directly at the pump or paying their heating bill, or indirectly when the price for everything else goes up. Canadians are very sensitive to those pocketbook issues, probably even more so than Americans. Energy affordability could have been a winning issue for the CPC, with the winter months approaching and more than a year of accumulated pandemic-related economic anxiety weighing on people's minds. Instead they chose to go Liberal-lite, a move which rarely, if ever, works.

Still, I do appreciate arguments like those of former Conservative MP and minister Joe Oliver, whose recent endorsement of O'Toole for PM said:

[Trudeau] has exploited the pandemic to set the country on a path of unsustainable spending and intrusive government. Four more years galloping toward a dystopian Great Reset would make it exceptionally challenging for a new government to arrest, let alone reverse, that dire fate.

But I can't help but notice that Oliver's argument -- that Trudeau is awful and Canada just needs him gone -- is only for O'Toole by default.  Maybe that will be enough, and Trudeau fatigue will carry O'Toole over the finish line. But such a strategy just failed spectacularly in the California recall election, leaving Gov. Gavin Newsom in an even stronger position to torture the Golden State than he was before. Canada is likely to experience the same fate.

The Parallels Between 9/11 and COVID-19

It isn’t obvious at first, but if you look at the terrorist attacks of 9/11 and COVID-19, there are stark parallels that go to the heart of what America is, and what it isn’t.

The insidious and horrific strategic and tactical brilliance of the 9/11 plot is that it relied on three deficiencies engrained in American sociology, and one critical holistic approach.

The first deficiency was that airport security was exceedingly lax.  The Israelis already understood that weapons were only one part of a threat profile, and that anything could be used as a weapon.  What Israeli airport security looked for was people who were a threat.

In 2001, U.S. airline security was handled by private companies that used minimum wage workers with minimal viable threat-detection training.  America was woefully unprepared for the possibility of box cutters, much less terrorists themselves.  We had no profiling system in place.

Have a nice flight, Mr. Atta.

The second deficiency was that the terrorists knew that cockpit doors could be easily breached, but more importantly, that by harming female passengers or flight attendants, the male pilots would instinctively leap to their defense – exposing themselves to harm and loss of the cockpit.

The third deficiency was that Americans would do as they were told, and remain in their seats.  Thank God the passengers of United 93 rose to the occasion, sacrificing themselves to save countless other lives.

The fourth deficiency was more holistic.  America would never see this coming.  We wouldn’t expect it from either a strategic or a tactical standpoint.  The reason the entire plot was successful was because the terrorists understood their enemy so well that they designed the attacks by using our weaknesses against us.  Whether the terrorists knew that our military aircraft were not generally armed and couldn’t shoot down a plane is unknown, but regardless, we weren’t ready for that scenario, either.

Simply put: America was not only unprepared for this scenario, it was underprepared.

Why?  Because America, particularly government at every level, lacked vision.  The problem with government is that the bureaucracy discourages innovation, forward-thinking, imagination, and therefor, preparation.

The changes in American society to adapt to this new reality were generally accepted as necessary, if unwelcome.   America has learned to live with a government-run airport security agency that functionally isn’t much better than the lax private firms.  Technology has sufficiently improved that obvious weapon threats can be detected, yet political correctness has undermined any possible passenger profiling.  A protocol exists for when pilots can exit a cockpit.  Military aircraft are armed.

Threats on board aircraft are met with swift passenger response.  That isn’t government at work, that’s normal Americans protecting each other when a clear and present danger asserts itself.

Which brings us to COVID-19.  The clearest parallel is that, once again, America was caught utterly unprepared for the scenario.  The same situation from 2001 remains: government lacked vision, imagination, and preparation.

Apparently, none of the millions of government workers in any branch of government, or at any state or local level, or at any agency such as, say, the Centers for Disease Control saw the same movies about deadly viruses that we did.

Despite the anthrax attacks, which began just a week after 9/11, government failed to have any protocols whatsoever in place.   Think about this.  The primary job of government is to defend the nation, and despite knowledge that a bioterror attack could and likely would one day happen, our government was caught utterly and irredeemably flat-footed.

The worst irony of all is that, while it appears that China was involved with intentional weaponization of the virus, it is unlikely that the release itself was intentional.  China has far too much reliance on the global economy, and the dispersal vectors would have been carefully planned and executed.

The release was accidental and yet we still weren’t prepared.   Worse, government at every level has botched the response, except in Republican-led states.

The attacks of 9/11 showed America that our unaddressed vulnerabilities could be exploited and result in disaster.  Twenty years later, we haven’t learned that lesson.  The even more terrible irony is that our unaddressed vulnerabilities are being exploited by our own people and in service of tyranny.

It’s been apparent since early on that the virus is primarily a threat to the elderly and those who are already in bad shape, with 94 percent of those dying being over age 65 and with an average of three comorbidities.  Yet politicians rushed to shut everything down, kept things shut down, and created even greater short-term and long-term damage by adhering to this misguided policy.

Docile Americans have been all too quick to stay in their seats, keep their masks on, take experimental vaccines, shut down their businesses, keep kids home from school, and do what they are told.   The only difference is that terrorists aren’t flying us into buildings.  No, that job is being handled by the federal government, malicious governors, and myopic county and city officials.

Think about United 93.  Those heroes didn’t stay in their seats.  They rose up and put a stop to things, and nobody told them to just do as they were told.  At least the other United passengers weren’t a hindrance.   Today, half of America not only act as hindrances to those who demand to protect their own liberties, but actively fight to suppress those acts.

Just as the TSA hasn’t made us any safer, the government response to Covid hasn’t made us safer, either.  The only people put on no-fly lists are so-called agitators who refuse to comply with the absurd demand by a federal agency to wear a mask on an airplane, despite the fact that airplanes are proven not to be a spread vector.

Welcome to the friendly skies.

Instead of an airport security approach of profiling those most likely to be terrorists as possible threats, the TSA has a history of harassing old ladies and children.

Meanwhile, government and willing corporate stooges are profiling average Americans and subjecting them to tyranny by forcing them to adhere to vaccine and mask mandates.

On 9/11, we saw heroes emerge from every corner of America.  We saw them on United 93.  We saw them in the firefighters and first responders of New York City.  We saw them in average citizens helping each other out.

Today, we see few heroes.  There are doctors who will prescribe forbidden treatments.  There are those who quit their jobs.  There are those speaking out on social media. But there are no heroes like those on United 93.  The terrorists from within America have won.

Enemies of the People: Gavin Newsom

Who's Afraid of the Big Bad Covid?

It seems odd that the more research and information we have on Covid-19 and its treatments, the worse the story gets.

For the first time in history, the reaction to a virus is to shut down an entire polity and economy – workers, businesses, groceries, transportation, entertainment – regardless of infection. It seems that the more advanced a society is, the more primitive its responses to disease. Why?

Still-living generations of men and women who stood-up to tyrants in WW2 suddenly cower in their closets, allowing government to destroy the world they had sacrificed so much to save.

Their children, the infamous Baby Boomers, ‘Cry “OMG!” and loose the dogs of quarantine.’

THEIR children, raised with more freedom and prosperity than any generation in the history of the known universe, wet their beds and fink on their neighbors if Johnny is out without a mask.

The countries with the highest levels of vaccination now are experiencing the highest levels of infection. Governments are talking about three jabs, four jabs, annual jabs – forever. Countries that are not participating in the orgy of self-destruction that is consuming most of the West, on the other hand, seem to be doing far better. (Newsflash-1: Almost everyone who gets it – gets over it. Newsflash-2: We’re ALL going to get it.)

The government statistics on lethality are here. Basically, if you are under 80 years of age and are not morbidly obese, this is not going to kill you.

Every study looking at the issue has arrived at the conclusion that natural immunity is both stronger and more long-lasting than artificial immunity that comes from the muzzle of a syringe. Natural immunity is achieved by having one’s body infected and the infection successfully fought-off.

Infection: Antibodies: Immunity.

Get it: Get over it: Immunity.

But … the media and government tell you: We can’t get over it! We’ll all DIE!

For reasons both unknown and uninvestigated both our government and its media scribes are working together to suppress information about, and prohibit usage of, proven treatments; the “get over it” part of the problem.

Get it: Get over it: Immunity…. does not seem to be a goal of the ruling class…

In Florida, Governor Ron DeSantis has been pushing monoclonal antibodies as treatment, with tthese results:

(The government is restricting the distribution of monoclonal antibodies.)

As many have noted, ivermectin, a Nobel-prize-winning antiviral and a drug on the WHO list of critical drugs, kills 99.98 percent of the viral load in 48 hours (and here). HCQ has similar results.

(The government and BigPharma are restricting the distribution of ivermectin and HCQ.)

A new Nitric Oxide nasal spray (NONS) seems to kill the virus in several days.

(If I were a betting man, my money would be on government prohibiting distribution, usage & dissemination of information on NONS once it's proven useful.)

All of these are drugs and treatments long in use, which kill the virus in the infected. Infection: antibodies: immunity.

Many people – about half the country – are enthralled by mRNA vaccines. At the same time, the CDC is looking at a “higher than expected” rate of myocarditis among recipients of mRNA vaccines. The five-year mortality of those diagnosed with myocarditis is 72.4 percent. Three quarters of those so diagnosed will likely die within five years.

The face-mask monster, sighted in Berlin.

This peer-reviewed report on Myocarditis is astounding and should be read in its entirety, but a few quotes are in order here. [references in the linked paper]:

The US Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) finds increased reported cases of myocarditis and pericarditis following mRNA COVID-19 vaccination, most notably in adolescents and young adults, including in the absence of COVID-19 infection. Myocarditis was only rarely found post-vaccination prior to the COVID mRNA vaccines.

However, it has recently been determined that the delivery of spike proteins and / or their generating mechanisms, as with all known injected substances, do indeed diffuse and travel in an organism, away from the site of injection, in accordance with well-established principles of circulation, throughout the body, including to internal organs.  Organs that have been affected by this body-wide distribution have included the heart, brain, spleen and liver, with especially high concentrations found in the ovaries and the plasma.…

It has been observed also that mRNA interventions are fragile and unpredictable in their effect, and have been seen to damage mitochondria by a number of known mechanisms. Of patients hospitalized for COVID-19, myocarditis-pattern injury was observed in 4.5% to 27% of cases. Moreover, in the event of SARS-CoV-2 infection, it was found that the associated cytotoxic and pro-apoptotic effects were sufficient to abolish cardiomyocyte beating (contraction-relaxation cycles). However, direct virus replication was not found on examination of the myocardium, and SARS-CoV-2 RNA was not found in the cardiomyocytes.  Therefore, it is worthwhile to examine if post-vaccine myocarditis is likely to be caused by spike proteins generated by the vaccines.

The spike proteins that are generated by the mRNA COVID vaccines are said to be identical to those attached to SARS-CoV-2. The spike protein in SARS-CoV-2 is a trimeric, or three-part protein, composed of two functional S1 subunits, as well as a structural S2 subunit.  Each of those three units are, incidentally, bound and inactivated by the drug ivermectin.

In sum, the mRNA vaccines – unexpectedly – create spike proteins throughout the body – for how long no one knows.  These spike proteins kill heart cells that do not regenerate. Kill enough and you will die: 72% mortality within five years. (Unanswered question: What do these circulating spike proteins do in fetal hearts only building their cells for the first time?) And FDA-approved drug treatments that stop the above lethal processes are prohibited by the government and Big Pharma.

By forcing non-vaccinating (they don't prevent infection or spread) mRNA "vaccines," probably forever, when we know, at best, they reduce symptoms but do not create herd immunity (and here), and that may cause myocarditis, when we do have drugs and treatments that kill the virus in the infected - who then will develop long-term (and herd) immunity, we are being forced to prolong the virus and prohibited from ending its threat.

Why?  Why? Why?

 

The President of the United States

Makes you proud to be an American, doesn't he?

In Memoriam

Winner Takes All, Beijing-Style

Much has been made of the estimated one-trillion-dollars worth of lithium reserves hiding in the soil of Afghanistan since the chaotic withdrawal of American troops from Kabul cast doubt on America’s future ability to exercise power in and around Afghanistan. That ability is not zero. The U.S. has the power to withhold large sums of aid on which the Taliban is relying for the reconstruction of a devastated country. But it’s greatly inferior to the power and influence currently exercised by China which is cosying up to all of its neighbors in Central Asia in an attempt to gain something like a monopoly of lithium.

It’s a scene reminiscent of pre-war thrillers in which hostile powers vie for the control of materials essential for war, usually oil, and their agents scheme to steal the maps and contracts that will ensure their victory. (See Eric Ambler, Graham Greene, and more recently, Alan Furst passim.) But it’s very far from fiction.

China herself has substantial reserves of lithium. That’s a “special earth” that goes into the manufacture of electric vehicles, AI machines, and iPhones. As an Al Jazeera report pointed out,

Now all three are at the cutting edge of a modern economy driven by advancements in high-tech chips and large-capacity batteries that are made with a range of minerals, including rare earths. And Afghanistan is sitting on deposits estimated to be worth $1 trillion or more, including what may be the world’s largest lithium reserves — if anyone can get them out of the ground.

And not just lithium. Among the other rare minerals increasingly needed to power a modern economy and to achieve climate change policies such as Net-Zero, China also has large reserves of tungsten, iron, lead, copper, mercury, and more.

Looking to 2050.

If China succeeds in its current wooing of not only the Taliban but also Pakistan, Iran, Russia, and other countries in Central Asia, the Middle East, and further afield, it will come close to gaining a strategic monopoly of the minerals needed for economic growth, technological superiority, and military power. The West ignored that threat until recently when the Chinese Communist Party’s deceptive and even sinister suppression of news of the Covid virus until it had spread worldwide belatedly alarmed policy-makers. If China is an enemy or becoming one, its hoovering up of strategic minerals would constitute a major national security threat. Unless . . .

There was one optimistic interpretation of China’s rush to monopolize strategic minerals, however: it suggested that the new superpower might be serious about eventually combatting climate change. Its previous promises to do so were looking as threadbare as its explanations of the origins of Covid. But might China’s grab for a virtual lithium-etc. monopoly mean that it was preparing for an eventual switch from fossil fuels to “renewables” which would require a reliable supply and build-up of stocks of the raw materials for the switch?

So has does that optimistic view look when placed alongside other decisions taken by Beijing? My attention was caught by a paragraph in the important book, This Sovereign Isle: Britain In and Out of Europe, by the distinguished Cambridge historian, Robert Tombs, in which he briefly notes the “alarming rampage” that China embarked on in June 2020: economic sanctions against Australia when its government proposed to investigate subversion and corruption in its own political system; China’s suppression of liberty in Hong Kong (that incidentally broke an international treaty with the U.K.); the invasion over the Ladakh frontier by the Chinese army that attacked and murdered twenty Indian troops; renewed tensions with Japan and other maritime states over Chinese claims on strategic islands in the Pacific; threats against Taiwan (naturally); and then, more interestingly:

[I]n quick succession in July and August the Chinese government concluded long-term oil and gas contracts with Iran(for $400 billion—effectively a monopsony for twenty-five years), Saudi Arabia (it is said in exchange for nuclear technologies that the US would not provide), and Abu Dhabi, securing long-term supplies at bargain prices at the expense of Europe and Japan.

The return of the Silk Road.

At the expense of the U.S. too since the country won’t be able to access the reserves China has locked up when the slow strangulation of America’s fracking revolution and pipeline capacity by Biden’s regulatory policy means that the supply of American natural gas peters out. No one in Washington or Brussels seems to have joined up all the dots. Professor Tombs now does so:

[T]his pre-emption of vast oil supplies, combined with massive use of coal for electricity generation, suggests how far Beijing’s vaunted backing of Green technology is a weapon against a gullible West.

In other words the Chinese government is locking up energy reserves of all kinds, the means of transporting energy of all kinds (think Belt and Road), and the supplies of lithium and other raw materials needed for ‘clean’ energy and ‘renewables’ to work. America’s defeat in Afghanistan just made China’s task both easier and more vital.

And what are the U.S. and the West locking up? Not America’s high-technology weaponry abandoned in Kabul but promises of eventually joining the West in its Net-Zero crusade—promises that China has broken several times already.