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Diversity a one-way street as the Left tries to ban anything offensive

Left wants to ban anything offensive

 

When the left talks about freedom, it means freedom for those who conform. When it talks about diversity, it means my way or the highway. Political correctness must be enforced. Dissent will not be tolerated. So much for the left and its concept of freedom and liberation.

Of course, the left will say to us, “No, you are the ones who require conformity. You are the ones who refuse to recognize marriage when it’s different from what you’re used to. You are the ones who want to forbid a woman from having control over her own body. It is our side, the left, which loves freedom.”

When it comes to abortion, notice that despite our refusal to accept that horrendous practice, the right is not forcibly stopping women from having abortions. We’re arguing that no one has the right to terminate the life of an innocent baby and we’re advocating a change in the laws and the culture through political and persuasive means.

Our way is the only right way!In sharp contrast, it is the left that wants to shut down dissenting views. Protesting at college campuses before a thoughtful conservative delivers a speech?  Of course…you need to focus on our way, ’cause it’s the best way! Forcing conservative professors into hiding? What’s wrong with that?  They should be hiding!  Forbidding professional counseling for minors with unwanted same-sex attractions?  They don’t need your biased counseling, they need to experience life so they can choose diversity.  Requiring people to use certain terms in their speech and punishing them if they don’t?  We know what we mean and so does everybody else, so use our words!

The more power the left has, the more dissension needs to be crushed and the more a radical PC norm must be enforced.  The more power the left has, the more power the left wants.

How else do you explain this headline announcing, “Liberal Australian Colleges Ban Sarcasm From Campus”?

As Kassy Dillon reported on the Daily Wire, “Several universities in Australia have brilliantly put a ban in place to protect students from the life-threatening dangers of sarcasm.”

In an interview on Sky News, Gideon Rozner, the Director of Policy at the Institute of Public Affairs, said that the majority of Australian universities are hostile to free speech and that only one university respects free speech. He added that several universities ban sarcasm because “it’s a form of violence.”

Seriously? You want to ban sarcasm?  If it offends you, you ban it…

Or how about this story from England, as reported by US News? “A school in England has banned students from wearing expensive winter coats in an attempt to stop the shaming of those less fortunate or struggling financially.  Woodchurch High School in Birkenhead, located in northwestern England, sent a letter to parents earlier this month announcing that the restriction would be enforced after Christmas.

“Rebekah Phillips, the head teacher at the school for students 11 to 16 years old, told CNN that she was ‘mindful that some young people put pressure on their parents to purchase expensive items of clothing,’ but that these jackets ’cause a lot of inequality’ between the students.”

Equality must be enforced?  Isn’t that what got the Communists started?

In the world of academics, if you want a good career, especially in the elite schools, you’d best keep your conservative views in the closet. In the words of economist James Miller, “Practically the only way for a women’s-studies professor to get a lifetime college appointment is for her to contribute to the literature on why America is racist, sexist, and homophobic.”

And what happens if you don’t like the results of a statewide election? You call for a boycott of that state! The people must be punished for their conservative and moderate votes.

That’s why “several Hollywood actors have called for a boycott of Georgia’s film industry after Republican Brian Kemp officially won the state’s gubernatorial contest.”  How dare the people of Georgia refuse to elect a far-left candidate supported by the Hollywood elite?  They must be punished.

Diversity is a one-way street when it comes to the left’s our-way-or-the-highway one-way world.

 

[From an article published by AskDrBrown.org]

 

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As always, posted for your edification and enlightenment by

NORM ‘n’ AL, Minneapolis
normal@usa1usa.com
612.239.0970

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

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Google employees are publicly rebelling against having to build new search engine which will make oppressed people even more oppressed

Google only wants money, not better and happier lives

 

More than 1,400 Google staff, many journalists, and human rights organizations are calling on Google to halt its controversial project called Dragonfly.

What is Project Dragonfly?

Dragonfly is a search engine specially built for China. It would unleash more censorship on a mass scale by selectively blocking certain search terms, apparently at the behest of China’s government. Human rights groups are blasting the company for aiding and abetting China’s mass surveillance and rights violations which could result in potential imprisonment.

It turns out Google’s employees had been unwittingly working on this project for a while until 2017 without knowing its intended purpose. News of this highly secret program finally leaked and no one is letting it get swept under the rug.

Thankfully, since the news leaked out, no amount of time has caused advocates and free speech lovers to forget this scandal. Those in the know are using the hashtag #DropDragonfly.

The search engine would censure terms like “human rights” and “religion.” Hundreds of Google employees have called this out as obvious freedom of speech violations.

“We are Google employees and we join Amnesty International in calling on Google to cancel project Dragonfly…”

Common Dreams reported that an open letter was drawn up.

Signed by 61 groups—including Amnesty International, the Electronic Freedom Foundation (EFF), and Human Rights Watch—as well as 11 individuals that include NSA whistleblower Edward Snowden, the letter points to a series of reports from The Intercept that detail how the project “would facilitate repressive state censorship, surveillance, and other violations affecting nearly a billion people in China.”

Google employees recently published the open letter on Medium.com announcing that they had partnered with Amnesty International and called on their employer to cancel project Dragonfly, calling it an “effort to create a censored search engine for the Chinese market that enables state surveillance.”

They wrote:

We are among thousands of employees who have raised our voices for months. International human rights organizations and investigative reporters have also sounded the alarm, emphasizing serious human rights concerns and repeatedly calling on Google to cancel the project. So far, our leadership’s response has been unsatisfactory.

Our opposition to Dragonfly is not about China: we object to technologies that aid the powerful in oppressing the vulnerable, wherever they may be. The Chinese government certainly isn’t alone in its readiness to stifle freedom of expression, and to use surveillance to repress dissent. Dragonfly in China would establish a dangerous precedent at a volatile political moment, one that would make it harder for Google to deny other countries similar concessions.

Our company’s decision comes as the Chinese government is openly expanding its surveillance powers and tools of population control. Many of these rely on advanced technologies, and combine online activity, personal records, and mass monitoring to track and profile citizens.

Dragonfly would also enable a government propaganda program.

In addition to questioning Google’s wavering stance on China, the employees point out that Dragonfly would also “enable censorship and government-directed disinformation, and destabilize the ground truth on which popular deliberation and dissent rely.”

“Given the Chinese government’s reported suppression of dissident voices, such controls would likely be used to silence marginalized people, and favor information that promotes government interests,” they added.

This isn’t the first time Google has attempted Project Dragonfly.

Google dropped a previous attempt at Dragonfly in 2010 after employees voiced concerns. However, according to internal documents and inside sources, Dragonfly was back up in Spring 2017 and allegedly sped up in December after Google CEO Sundar Pichai met a Chinese government official.

Patrick Poon, who researches China for Amnesty, said:

It will be a dark day for internet freedom if Google has acquiesced to China’s extreme censorship rules to gain market access.  In putting profits before human rights, Google would be setting a chilling precedent and handing the Chinese government a victory.

China has been eerily quiet on the subject, yet the country is currently mining data from the brains of its workers and has installed a social credit system that has barred 15 million of its people from travel, so…

Just an “Exploratory” Project?

Google employees reminded the company that their original policies preclude them from working for evil purposes, so imagine their concern when they finally realized what the project was they had been unwittingly working on this whole time. Google has claimed that it was not close to plans for launching the project in China.

Although Google responded that work on Dragonfly was “exploratory” in nature, The Intercept reported that “an Android app with versions called Maotai and Longfei had been developed and could be launched within nine months if Chinese government approval was won.”

Additionally, a leaked document showed language that suggested something more than exploratory work.

“We have to be focused on what we want to enable,” said a Mr. Gomes to employees on the project. “And then when the opening happens we are ready for it.”

“I wish ourselves the best of luck in actually reaching our destination as soon as possible,” Gomes said in a committee hearing.

The company’s head of search quickly shut down any talk of goals for China during a Q&A at a conference in October.

Google CEO Sundar Pichai is currently being grilled by Congress on the company’s potential plans in China as it relates to Internet censorship.

Will a censorship search engine happen in the U.S.?

One could argue it already is happening with changing algorithms that make it difficult for once-popular websites to be seen and heard. Google is currently in hot water over accusations that it shows political bias in search results. One could argue that the Fake News theater was just one brick laid in the road to widespread censorship.

Digital rights defenders warn that Dragonfly “is likely to set a terrible precedent for human rights and press freedoms worldwide.”

 

[From an article published by THE ORGANIC PREPPER]

 

NORM ‘n’ AL Note:  Here are some facts you might not be aware of:

Google trackers are lurking on 75% of websites.  This means they are not only tracking what you search for, they’re also tracking which websites you visit.

Google uses your data for ads that can follow you around forever. They let advertisers follow you across two million different websites and apps.

Your personal data remains with Google indefinitely.  It can be subpoenaed by lawyers, including for civil cases like divorce. Google answered over 100,000 requests in 2017 alone!

“DuckDuckGo has now grown into a solid Google replacement. It doesn’t track user data or target your IP address or search history. The search engine deployed by DuckDuckGo uses nifty algorithms and calculations you’ve come to expect on Google and give you a good search result. You can also customize its interface, with search shortcuts and an Instant Answers feature that’s just as good as, if not better than,Google’s Knowledge Graph. You can also make DuckDuckGo an extension of your browser and activate more privacy settings to keep your search history as protected as possible.”  [From TECHWORM.NET]

NORM ‘n’ AL have been using DuckDuckGo.com for the past several years, and have found it to be every bit as good at the actual search function as Google is…but we sure like the fact that we are not bombarded with ads every time we do a search!

 

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As always, posted for your edification and enlightenment by

NORM ‘n’ AL, Minneapolis
normal@usa1usa.com
612.239.0970

 

 

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US is now a net oil exporter for the first time in 75 years

Oil wells

 

AMERICA IS TODAY ENERGY INDEPENDENT!

America turned into a net oil exporter last week, breaking 75 years of continued dependence on foreign oil and marking a pivotal — even if perhaps brief — moment toward what U.S. President Donald Trump has branded as ‘energy independence.’

The shift to net exports is the dramatic result of an unprecedented boom in American oil production, with thousands of wells pumping from the Permian region of Texas and New Mexico, from the Bakken in North Dakota, and from the Marcellus in Pennsylvania.

While the country has been heading in that direction for years, this week’s dramatic shift came as data showed a sharp drop in imports and a jump in exports to a record high. Given the volatility in weekly data, the U.S. will likely remain a small net importer most of the time.

“We are becoming the dominant energy power in the world,” said Michael Lynch, president of Strategic Energy & Economic Research. “But, because the change is gradual over time, I don’t think it’s going to cause a huge revolution, but you do have to think that OPEC is going to have to take that into account when they think about cutting.”

The shale revolution has transformed oil wildcatters into billionaires and the U.S. into the world’s largest petroleum producer, surpassing Russia and Saudi Arabia. The power of OPEC has been diminished, undercutting one of the major geopolitical forces of the last half century. The cartel and its allies are meeting in Vienna this week, trying to make a tough choice to cut output and support prices, risking the loss of more market share to the U.S.

The U.S. sold overseas last week a net 211,000 barrels a day of crude and refined products such as gasoline and diesel, compared to net imports of about 3 million barrels a day on average so far in 2018, and an annual peak of more than 12 million barrels a day in 2005, according to the U.S. Energy Information Administration.

The EIA said the U.S. has been a net oil importer in weekly data going back to 1991 and monthly data starting in 1973. Oil historians that have compiled even older annual data using statistics from the American Petroleum Institute said the country has been a net oil importer since 1949, when Harry Truman was at the White House.

On paper, the shift to net oil imports means that the U.S. is today energy independent, achieving a rhetorical aspiration for generations of American politicians, from Jimmy Carter to George W. Bush. Yet, it’s a paper tiger achievement: In reality, the U.S. remains exposed to global energy prices, still affected by the old geopolitics of the Middle East.

U.S. crude exports are poised to rise even further, with new pipelines from the Permian in the works and at least nine terminals planned that will be capable of loading supertankers. The only facility currently able to load the largest ships, the Louisiana Offshore Oil Port, is on pace to load more oil in December than it has in any other month.

The massive Permian may be even bigger than previously thought. The Delaware Basin, the less drilled part of the field, holds more than twice the amount of crude as its sister, the Midland Basin, the U.S. Geological Service said Thursday.

While the net balance shows the U.S. is selling more petroleum than buying, American refiners continue to buy millions of barrels each day of overseas crude and fuel. The U.S. imports more than 7 million barrels a day of crude from all over the globe to help feed its refineries, which consume more than 17 million barrels each day. In turn, the U.S. has become the world’s top fuel supplier.

“The U.S. is now a major player in the export market,” said Brian Kessens, who helps manage $16 billion at Tortoise in Leawood, Kansas. “We continue to re-tool our export infrastructure along the Gulf Coast to expand capacity, and you continue to see strong demand globally for crude oil.”

 

[From an article published by NEWSMAX]

 

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As always, posted for your edification and enlightenment by

NORM ‘n’ AL, Minneapolis
normal@usa1usa.com
612.239.0970

 

 

 

 

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Four problems with the new climate change report

Climate change research

 

1. It wildly exaggerates economic costs.

One statistic that media outlets have seized upon is that the worst climate scenario could cost the U.S. 10 percent of its gross domestic product by 2100.  The 10 percent loss projection is more than twice the percentage that was lost during the Great Recession.

The study, funded in part by climate warrior Tom Steyer’s organization, calculates these costs on the assumption that the world will be 15 degrees Fahrenheit warmer. That temperature projection is even higher than the worst-case scenario predicted by the United Nations Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change. In other words, it is completely unrealistic.

2. It assumes the most extreme (and least likely) climate scenario.

The scary projections in the National Climate Assessment rely on a theoretical climate trajectory that is known as Representative Concentration Pathway 8.5. In estimating impacts on climate change, climatologists use four representative such trajectories to project different greenhouse gas concentrations.

To put it plainly, Representative Concentration Pathway 8.5 assumes a combination of bad factors that are not likely to all coincide. It assumes “the fastest population growth (a doubling of Earth’s population to 12 billion), the lowest rate of technology development, slow GDP growth, a massive increase in world poverty, plus high energy use and emissions.”

Despite what the National Climate Assessment says, Representative Concentration Pathway 8.5 is not a likely scenario. It estimates nearly impossible levels of coal consumption, fails to take into account the massive increase in natural gas production from the shale revolution, and ignores technological innovations that continue to occur in nuclear and renewable technologies.

When taking a more realistic view of the future of conventional fuel use and increased greenhouse gas emissions, the doomsday scenarios vanish. Climatologist Judith Curry recently wrote, “Many ‘catastrophic’ impacts of climate change don’t really kick at the lower CO2 concentrations, and [Representative Concentration Pathway] then becomes useful as a ‘scare’ tactic.”

Nasa graph

3. It cherry-picks science on extreme weather and misrepresents timelines and causality.

A central feature of the National Climate Assessment is that the costs of climate are here now, and they are only going to get worse. We’re going to see more hurricanes and floods. Global warming has worsened heat waves and wildfires.

But last year’s National Climate Assessment on extreme weather tells a different story. As University of Colorado Boulder professor Roger Pielke Jr. pointed out in a Twitter thread in August 2017, there were no increases in drought, no increases in frequency or magnitude of floods, no trends in frequency or intensity of hurricanes, and “low confidence for a detectable human climate change contribution in the Western United States based on existing studies.”

It’s hard to imagine all of that could be flipped on its head in a matter of a year.

Another sleight of hand in the National Climate Assessment is where certain graph timelines begin and end. For example, the framing of heat wave data from the 1960s to today makes it appear that there have been more heat wavesin recent years. Framing wildfire data from 1985 until today makes it appear as though wildfires have been increasing in number.

But going back further tells a different story on both counts, as Pielke Jr. has explained in testimony.

Moreover, correlation is not causality. Western wildfires have been particularly bad over the past decade, but it’s hard to say to what extent these are directly owing to hotter and drier temperatures. It’s even more difficult to pin down how much man-made warming is to blame.

Yet the narrative of the National Climate Assessment is that climate change is directly responsible for the increase in economic and environmental destruction of western wildfires. Dismissing the complexity of factors that contribute to a changing climate and how they affect certain areas of the country is irresponsible.

4. Energy taxes are a costly non-solution.

The National Climate Assessment stresses that this report “was created to inform policy-makers and makes no specific recommendations on how to remedy the problem.” Yet the takeaway was clear: The costs of action (10 percent of America’s GDP) dwarf the costs of any climate policy.

The reality, however, is that policies endorsed to combat climate change would carry significant costs and would do nothing to mitigate warming, even if there were a looming catastrophe like the National Climate Association says.

Just last month, the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change proposed a carbon tax of between $135 and $5,500 by the year 2030. An energy tax of that magnitude would bankrupt families and businesses, and undoubtedly catapult the world into economic despair.

These policies would simply divert resources away from more valuable use, such as investing in more robust infrastructure to protect against natural disasters or investing in new technologies that make Representative Concentration Pathway 8.5 even more of an afterthought than it already should be.

The Trump administration is coming under criticism for publishing the report on Black Friday. To the extent that was a conscious strategy, it certainly isn’t a new tactic. The Obama administration had frequent Friday night document dumps in responding to congressional inquiries about Solyndra and the Department of Energy’s taxpayer-funded failures in the loan portfolio. The Environmental Protection Agency even released its Tier 3 gas regulations, which increased the price at the pump, on Good Friday.

No matter what party is in charge, the opposite party will complain about their burying the story. Regardless, the American public would be better served by enjoying the holiday season and shopping, rather than worrying about an alarmist report.

 

[From an article published by THE DAILY SIGNAL]

 

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As always, posted for your edification and enlightenment by

NORM ‘n’ AL, Minneapolis
normal@usa1usa.com
612.239.0970

 

MORE DATA ON THIS SUBJECT TO BE POSTED TOMORROW.

 

 

 

 

 

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Experts thought new home sales would rise in October, but new home sales DROPPED by 8.9 percent

New home sales have fallen in four of the last six months, so a very clear trend is now developing

The U.S. economy is definitely deviating from the script, and we just got more evidence that “Housing Bubble #2” is bursting.  Experts were expecting that new home sales in the U.S. would rise in October, but instead they plunged 8.9 percent.  That number is far worse than anyone was projecting, and many in the real estate industry are really starting to freak out.  And to be honest, things look like they are going to get even worse in 2019.

One survey found that the percentage of Americans who plan to buy a home over the next 12 months has fallen by about half during the past year.  Mortgage rates have steadily risen as the Federal Reserve has been hiking interest rates, and at this point most average Americans have been completely priced out of the market.  Home prices are going to have to come way down from where they are right now, and just as we witnessed in 2008, rapidly falling home prices can put an extraordinary amount of stress on the financial system.

Most analysts didn’t expect to see a new homes number anywhere near this bad.  Sometimes a really bad number from one part of the U.S. can drag down the overall number, but that wasn’t the case this time.  According to Reuters, there were “sharp declines in all four regions”…

Sales of new U.S. single-family homes tumbled to a more than 2-1/2-year low in October amid sharp declines in all four regions, further evidence that higher mortgage rates were hurting the housing market.

The Commerce Department said on Wednesday new home sales dropped 8.9 percent to a seasonally adjusted annual rate of 544,000 units last month. That was the lowest level since March 2016. The percent drop was the biggest since December 2017.

But of course it isn’t as if this latest report is coming out of nowhere.  The truth is that new home sales have fallen in four of the last six months, so a very clear trend is now developing.

Most mainstream economists still don’t seem to understand what is happening.  According to Reuters, the consensus estimate was that we would see new home sales rise 3.7 percent in October, and so an 8.9 percent plunge came as a real shock.

New home sales have now missed expectations for seven months in a row, and the similarities to 2008 are starting to become undeniable.

Sales of previously owned homes have been falling as well.  In fact, in October we witnessed the largest drop for previously owned home sales in four years

Sales of previously owned U.S. homes posted their largest annual decline since 2014 in October, as the housing market continues to sputter due to higher mortgage rates that are reducing home affordability.

If you want to blame someone for this mess, blame the Federal Reserve.

They created a “boom” in the housing market by pushing interest rates all the way to the floor during the Obama years, and now they are creating a “bust” by aggressively jacking up interest rates at a pace that our economy simply cannot handle.

If we had allowed the free market to be setting interest rates all this time, we would not be on such a roller coaster ride.

Just like during “Housing Bubble #1”, millions of Americans have been buying houses that they cannot afford, and that could mean another massive wave of mortgage defaults as this new economic downturn intensifies.  At this point, the debt to income ratio for mortgages insured by the FHA is at an all-time record high

One worrying indicator: The average debt-to-income ratio for mortgages insured by the Federal Housing Administration, which makes up about 22% of the housing market, is now at its highest level ever.

This is yet another indication that we are even more vulnerable than we were just prior to the subprime mortgage meltdown during the last financial crisis.

What’s coming next?  Even if economic conditions remained stable, housing prices would need to start falling dramatically in order to attract buyers.  In fact, we are already starting to see this happen in southern California and other markets that were once extremely “hot”.  As housing prices fall, millions of Americans will suddenly find themselves “underwater” on their mortgages.  In other words, they will owe more on their homes than those homes are worth.  During the last recession, many “underwater” homeowners ultimately decided to walk away rather than continue to service ridiculously bloated mortgages.

But the truth is that economic conditions are not likely to remain stable.  In fact, many are projecting that the approaching downturn will be even worse than 2008.

In such a scenario, millions of Americans will lose their jobs, and that means that millions of Americans will suddenly not be able to make their mortgage payments. As a result, mortgage defaults will skyrocket and home prices will drop like a rock. Just like last time around, there could be people who wake up one day and realize they owe two or three times as much money on their mortgages as their homes are currently worth, making the stampede of people walking away from “underwater” mortgages into an avalanche.

Needless to say, millions of mortgages suddenly going bad is a scenario that our financial system is not equipped to handle. What happened in 2008 was absolutely catastrophic for our large financial institutions, and what is coming is going to be even worse.  Of course the big financial institutions will want the federal government to bail them out, but there may not be much of an appetite for more corporate bailouts this time around.

And considering the fact that the US is already 22 trillion dollars in debt, we can’t exactly afford to be printing truckloads of money to fix another economic crisis.

The Federal Reserve has set the stage for this giant mess, and it is very likely going to shake the housing industry to the core, which in turn will create catastrophe on Wall Street and in the rest of the US economy.

 

[From an article by Michael Snyder for the Economic Collapse Blog]

 

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As always, posted for your edification and enlightenment by

NORM ‘n’ AL, Minneapolis
normal@usa1usa.com
612.239.0970

 

 

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Need a smile or a chuckle? Get it here!

From the Indian Hills Community Center in Colorado (ongoing):

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

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As always, posted for your edification and enlightenment by

NORM ‘n’ AL, Minneapolis
normal@usa1usa.com
612.239.0970

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

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Another EASY Monday…recent news in pictures

Official Democrat US map

 

The shoes he'll NEVER fill...

 

Anchor baby diapers

 

Civility and ignorance...

 

Mourning with our friends...

 

The other caravan...

 

More ignorance...

 

[From political cartoonist Michael Ramirez]

 

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As always, posted for your edification and enlightenment by

NORM ‘n’ AL, Minneapolis
normal@usa1usa.com
612.239.0970

 

 

 

 

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