Here’s how today’s racists managed to win their upper hand

Giving racist advantage to one group over all others seems to have become the rule of the day. On the other hand, saying we’re all equal has become a crime. Many prominent politically correct people, both in the media and in the academic circles, are being hounded if they pronounce one syllable wrong.

No need to feel sorry for them: they have been the ones who had instituted political correctness in the first place, denying their rights to everybody else, including the right of expression. So, what goes around, comes around.

But still: what the heck is happening? How did we manage to get to a situation where a bunch of arrogant, ignorant, illiterate hooligans have become the sole dictators, deciding what’s going to be going on in the public square?

Early warning signs

Interestingly, most people aren’t aware that Manning Rudolph Johnson did predict most of what we witness now when he published his explosive book in 1958, named Color, Communism, And Common Sense.

In fact, one wonders how many of today’s so-called intelligentsia have ever heard his name. Asking whether they had read his book would be superfluous.

Manning Rudolph Johnson was black. He used to think that communism would help overcome the many racial inequities his people used to suffer in his country.

As he rose through the U.S. Communist Party ranks, Manning Rudolph Johnson found out that no, the communists’ goal was not to help racial minorities. Their goal was to fan up mutual racial and ethnic hatreds to such a degree that the flame would lead to annihilation of the republican system of government in the U.S., bringing communism in in its stead.

What did Manning Rudolph Johnson get in return?

Abuse from a U.S. Supreme Court Justice. Ridicule from the mainstream media. And a serious attempt to ensure that his name disappears from history.

Justice Felix Frankfurter, in his dismissive remarks about Manning Rudolph Johnson and his information (not opinion but information), has become a shining symbol for the so-called liberal Jewish intellectuals whose blatant anti-semitism can only be compared to Adolf Hitler’s or Muslim priests’.

In any case, Manning Rudolph Johnson told the truth and America is now paying for its ignorance and sheer gullibility in the face of the dangers of the cancer known as communism.

Look back in anger

History tells us this is nothing new. We only have forgotten to learn from her. As has been our habit throughout history.

Here’s a brief peek at a few very recent examples.

A mere 103 years ago, Imperial Germany’s High Command told their Emperor (Kaiser) Wilhelm II that they see an easy out of their country’s unending war on Russia. Queen Victoria’s oldest grandson found their ideas perfidious enough and gave his royal assent to the plan.

A group of Russians in exile want to overthrow their Tsar, Nikolai II, the generals told their Kaiser. That would bring Russia into such turmoil, Nikolai II would immediately start begging for some kind of a peace treaty to get his country out of World War One.

And if not the Tsar, then his successors will.

Let’s provide these seditious mongrels with money, put them on a train, and transport the lot of them to their country. Sealed train, insisted His Majesty, we don’t want them to start spreading their ideas among our own people. No problem, said the generals, sealed train it’s going to be.

But, His Majesty wanted to know, how do you know their revolution is going to work? How can you can expect the muzhiki (poor peasants) of Russia to turn on their Tsar, and on their beloved Orthodox (Pravoslavnaia) church?

The generals told their Kaiser that they had read the bolshevik chief’s works. He’s been promising to take the land away from its lawful owners and distribute it among the muzhiki. Vladimir Ulyanov obviously knows that the majority of peasants would be willing to desert their battle lines, and that would be the end of it. Not, the generals added, that they believe this Ulyanov guy would be as good as his word, but when that happens, it would be no longer any of their business.

And this is precisely what happened. A provisional government in Russia that had forced Nicholas II into abdication, had no idea that a group of their compatriots has embarked on the path known in every country, and every political and judicial system, as high treason.

It must have been a bitter pill to swallow for Russia’s Tsars for simple family reasons: Nicholas, his wife Alexandra, and German Emperor Wilhelm II were all first cousins of King George V of the United Kingdom. Nicholas and Wilhelm II were in turn second cousins-once-removed. Each descended from King Frederick William III of Prussia. They were third cousins, too, as they were both Tsar Paul I of Russia’s great-great-grandsons.

Incestuous family trees aside, once Vladimir Ulyanov, a.k.a. Lenin, got into power, he had his representatives sign a peace treaty with Germany at Brest-Litovsk. That treaty amounted to nothing less than to full surrender.

Of course, history would go on, and Germany would still lose the war. Wilhelm II would abdicate, and Germany would be thrust into such mayhem that it would later on find Adolf Hitler the most attractive leader to get her out of her misery. But that’s another story.

And that Lenin’s bolsheviks would soon enough tell the muzhiki they did not really need their own land, and start enforcing collectivization, that’s another story, too.

Many seem to forget what happened shortly after the bolsheviks took over. They decided that everything and everyone linked to their country’s past in whatever shape or form is suspicious. They began to act accordingly.

The created something known as Proletcult (proletarian culture: they just loved their abbreviations).

It remains a subject of general consternation that so many of old Russian palaces, monuments, sculptures and sundry works of art have survived to this day. Obviously, the bolsheviks had so much other stuff on their agenda, they just didn’t get round to destroying it all.

In any case, when the rest of the world, its so-called civilized part, at least, saw what the bolsheviks were doing to their nation’s rich cultural and historical traditions, they called it all kinds of names. Criminal barbarism was one of the nicest ones among them.

A few steps forward

How the militant Taliban managed to take over Afghanistan and spread its terrorist tentacles all over the world has been an issue analysed in so many densely printed tomes, just listing them would take yet another densely printed book.

Aside from debating the levels of war between the then-Soviet Union and the more civilized west, the answer would be simple: because the west allowed them to. How many learned, spectacles-wearing do-gooders used to say this is their (meaning: Afghan) culture and who are we to be telling them what to do?

Indeed: who?

Still, when the Taliban took to ancient sculptures and monuments and began dynamiting them, what did they hear? An occasional tut-tut, and a few editorials saying they were a bunch of idiotic barbarians.

The Taliban, just as the bolsheviks, knew precisely what they were doing and why: rob people of their culture and tradition, and what have you got? A disjointed group, one that may be linked by a common language, but disjointed, nevertheless.

The good old ancient Greek king Philip II of Macedon used to describe it as diaírei kài, the good old Romans found it intriguing enough to accept it as Divide et impera (divide and rule), and the Taliban felt no need to give it a name. They just implemented it.

And look where Afghanistan is now: a nation divided along old tribal lines where many villagers wouldn’t dare come close to a neighbouring village, in fear for their lives.

Who buries whom?

Today’s would-be revolutionaries, seditious criminals all of them, have found that the bolsheviks’ artificial hatred among classes, based mainly on envy, didn’t get them far enough. And it petered out, too, when people realized that it’s easy to hate all and sundry when you do have enough toilet paper at home, for example. When you have to chase for it all over the place and end up having make do with whatever else, class antagonisms become secondary in a hurry.

Today’s would-be revolutionaries have also realized that even religion-based terrorism no longer cuts it. In any case, not sufficiently enough.

So, why not try race-based grievances, most of them centuries old, and many based on outright lies. Why not destroy everything that reminds people of the past that led to today along the way?

Whether all of those grievances are even justified, or whether they are addressed where they should be addressed is not really relevant.

It will be 64 years this November since then-Soviet chief communist Nikita Sergeievich Khrushchev told the Americans that the communists will bury them.

This statement made instant headlines, and (as happens so often with modern media) most of what Khrushchev would say later would get lost. Not in translation (Khrushchev’s personal interpreter Viktor Sukhodrev knew his job to a t). It just wasn’t as catchy as the headline-grabbing burial statement.

But, it turns out, Khrushchev wasn’t as naïve as many thought he was.

Here’s what he had to say on that rainy November day in 1959: “Your children’s children will live under communism. You Americans are so gullible. No, you won’t accept communism outright; but we will keep feeding you small doses of socialism until you will finally wake up and find you already have communism. We will not have to fight you; we will so weaken your economy, until you will fall like overripe fruit into our hands.

“The democracy will cease to exist,” Khrushchev finished, “when you take away from those who are willing to work and give to those who would not.”

To sum it all up: whose lives matter now?

Look for the money trail, and you shall find …

America is a free country, but some people have decided to take it even further:

The family (brothers and sister) of George Floyd opened a Go Fund Me account to “help the family.” They have, at time of writing, already raised $13,958,800 from donations. Yes, almost $14 MILLION.

Please remember: George Floyd was arrested NINE times; he was a convicted drug dealer (and apparently high on drugs the day he died); he held a gun to the stomach of a pregnant lady while his five buddies robbed her home; he did prison time three different times, totalling about eight years, and he quite obviously didn’t learn anything.

Granted, his life should not have ended the way it did. Granted, as well, that he was a willing participant in activities that involved violence on both sides of the equation.

America is memorializing him by painting murals of him on the sides of buildings like he’s a hero.

Any wonder his family feel perfectly free to help themselves on his behalf?



What does it tell YOU?

All of this does tell something significant to a Russian-American who lives in the Excited States. She quite obviously knows her way around. Having worked for the Central Intelligence Agency (CIA), she knows a thing or two about the difference between politics and politicking. She summed it all up.

Writing on the day of George Floyd’s funeral, she published a comment that a social media platform where it appeared found so incendiary, it threatened to block her for a month.

Except: they were barking at a wrong tree. This lady won’t be scared. She hinted publicly where they should take off, left the piece on the site, unchanged, and the mighty platform backed off. People who had experienced communism first-hand, and at its worst, too, usually have a frightful time getting scared by some would-be censors from California.

Here’s the gist of Aleksandra Antosyak’s view, tongue firmly in cheek, quoted with her permission (including permission to use her name):

The most powerful power on the planet says good-bye to one of its best sons.

Not even presidents get this kind of funeral: a golden coffin, hundreds of thousands of mourning and crying people, thousands of kneeling idiots, and they all ask for forgiveness from the black population.

The mayor of Minneapolis, hands on the coffin that carries the body of the worthiest of the worthy citizens of America (so as not to fall down from grief), cries crocodile tears.

Screams such as ‘Forgive us’ interrupt the mayor’s sobbing.

The deceased criminal’s former wife is crying, too. Last time she saw him was six years ago, when he abandoned her and their then-three-month-old daughter. He hasn’t sent his former wife any support over the years, but the poor widow still has been screaming for a week that she was left without a breadwinner. The heart-sick Americans raised some $2 million (that was then, it’s now more than $14 million, and the Go Fund Me account has been growing steadily – my update).

The University of Massachusetts has established a scholarship named after George Floyd. We do not know whether this particular scientist could read or not, but, most probably, the answer is no.

Still, with events unfolding at this rate (and with the Nobel Prize Committee being what it is this past few decades), we can expect the prize to be renamed to honour George Floyd.

Floyd spent time behind bars for robbery, for drug trafficking, for armed robbery (holding a gun against a pregnant woman’s stomach, he and his accomplices demanded money), and his sentence was reduced in a plea bargain deal during which he identified all of his associates.

Drugs were discovered in his blood during the post-mortem.

So, this is the 21st century America’s national hero.

He left many followers. His case lives and keeps growing. To show respect and sorrow for their fallen comrade, we see these people perform acts of massive robbery and violence.

Some of the most beautiful areas in many cities, including Los Angeles and New York, have been turned into junk. At least 89 police officers were killed. A 17-year-old girl has been raped. Even swans that live in city ponds did not escape.

Joe Biden, a candidate for President of the United States, suffering from old-age dementia, also fell tohis knees.

Hundreds of thousands of “Saint Floyd” fans will vote in the election for this fossil, actually helping the Democrats to achieve their objective without bending anything other than their knees.

So wrote Aleksandra Antosyak. As mentioned, on occasion, she was sarcastic. But, at all times, she was actually very serious.

How did we get here?

Learnt tomes had been written about where current society of the so-called Western civilization variety has been headed the last few decades. To sum their findings up: they all eventually see scenes as if taken from Edward Gibbon’s The Decline and Fall of the Roman Empire. The British historian wrote his masterpiece in the 18th century. One would have expected people would be able to learn. But no. Not a chance.

Some would trace the current situation to the emergence of the legacy of a school of ideology (thought it definitely is NOT), known as the Frankfurt School (Frankfurter Schule).

The Marxist group that called itself Institute for Social Research (Institut für Sozialforschung) was founded by Carl Grünberg in 1923 as an adjunct of the University of Frankfurt. It was the first Marxist-oriented research centre affiliated with a major German university.

Little wonder that Adolf Hitler’s Nazis went after the Frankfurter Schule with a serious vengeance. Most of those attached to the school managed to get away. Mostly to Great Britain and the U.S. While their beginnings in the Anglo-Saxon world weren’t very easy, when the Allies were drawn into the Second World War, the German scholars’ standing improved. It improved so much that quite a few of them decided not to return to Germany. They stayed behind in the two democratic countries that had given them shelter.

Slowly but distinctly, they began their climb to academically important positions in Great Britain and, especially, the U.S. Why, especially, the U.S.? It’s an American habit to treat everything that had come from Europe with a special sort of admiration. Many reasons. Suffice it to say that this is how it is, and the Frankfurter Schule’s alumni progress is proof if any was needed.

Their most worthwhile graduates would worm their way into other academic institutions, first of the highest learning, but then proceeding to lower levels, closer, as they like to call it, to the masses. Other such graduates would find ways to join the ranks of various business organizations, and many would land in the mainstream media organizations.

Metastatic society

This is the cancer that had brought today’s level of education, especially in the humanities, to the lowest common denominator imaginable. These are the people responsible for such crimes as political correctness, affirmative action and sundry movements they would call progressive.

Hijacking words and complete expressions has always been one of the mainstays of their actions. The word ‘progressive’ is just one of the many these people have abused for purposes of their own, making them lose their original meaning in the process.

Using such catchwords and catchphrases based on now meaningless words, they have become past masters in re-writing history and turning human values upside down.

Whether these people are bringing humanity to the precipice of an abyss whence we had got just a scant few decades ago knowingly or not, is not really too relevant. The only relevant fact here is that they are pushing us all, whether we like it or not, somewhere where we had been. Many of their followers are perfectly ignorant and illiterate of their own history. Simple slogans will do.

Many of us are too scared: what if someone accuses us of racism or any other –ism in vogue today? After all, these would-be revolutionaries take no prisoners. One of the main proponents of political correctness within Canada’s public broadcaster made just one, single, one-word slip, and where is she now?

There has been a popular saying according to which history tends to repeat itself: once as a tragedy, the next time as a farce. Sounds great, but it is a fallacy, too: what we did experience was a tragedy, what we are experiencing now is a tragedy, and what we will experience if this continues, will be a tragedy.

We will either stand up now, and put a stop to all of this nonsense, or we’ll have nobody else to blame but ourselves.

Proud people violently hate violence

Ephraim Kishon, a famous Israeli writer, once wrote a story about some kind of an international socialist gathering. It took place in Prague, capital of what used to be communist Czechoslovakia.

A group of Israeli youngsters, quite obviously of the so-called left-wing political persuasion, came to the heart of Europe to take part, too.

And, Kishon wrote, a group of Czechoslovak young communist organization activists used to walk around them, hissing: Jews! Jews!

What are they saying? the young Israelis asked.

Oh, their official interpreter said with an embarrassed expression on his face, they’re saying you’re Jews.

So? asked the young Israelis. So what? Yes, we’re Jews.

A few moments later it hit them: oh, they (the Czechoslovak young communist organization activists) seem to have a problem with THAT. Well, we can hardly care less. They have a problem with the fact that we are Jews. We are, and we don’t.

Mind, these were all children and grandchildren of people who had only very recently experienced the cruelest racist outrage in modern history, the Holocaust.

They were proud of their heritage, and if someone had a problem with it, they just shrugged it off: we won’t be solving others’ problems for them.

Kishon was born in Hungary. As a Holocaust survivor himself, he moved to Israel. He didn’t know a word of Hebrew or Yiddish when he got to the Promised Land. He managed to learn both languages well enough to write for printed publication and, later, for stage and film productions. His written Hebrew was impeccable, his spoken Hebrew reminded all and sundry of his Hungarian origin.

And yet, he never ever even thought of calling himself a Hungarian-Israeli.

Meanwhile, across the Big Pond

Which brings us to the United States and its ongoing battles with what has been called systemic racism.

The fact that Canada’s prime minister seems to think his country has the same problem can be viewed as a side show. It could, if only the so-called spontaneous protest demonstrations were not allowed to break all the limitations imposed by the so-called Covid 1984 (this is not a typo) pandemic.

Those who object to the draconian measures of power-hungry government officials suffer police harassment of the worst kind if they don’t obey the two-metre social distancing rule during their peaceful demonstrations.

Those who have issues with what they view as pervasive racism in our society, can march hand-in-hand in tight crowds, loot, attack innocent bystanders, and not many dare say a word about it (and never mind against it).

One would have expected that laws should treat all of us equally. Seems the expectation has been way too idealistic.

Yes, the outbreak of protest was triggered by inexcusable, criminal, even, treatment of a suspect by an American police officer. And yes, this officer, and all those who were standing around him doing nothing to save the suspect’s life, should be behind bars now, and never be allowed to work in any public office ever again.

Not that George Floyd was an angel in any shape or form, as some try to depict him now. His rap sheet was quite lomg, and it did include violent crimes that landed him in prison, once for five years, and that only because he pled guilty in a plea bargain.

And yes, the police were called in on that tragic day because he was suspected of committing yet another illegal act, while intoxicated.

Still, again, none of it justifies what happened to him, and here’s hoping that justice meted on those officers involved in the tragedy will be swift and just.

But what we are facing now is about something else.

It is about people who seem to suffer from deep-rooted inferiority complexes because of who they are, or what skin colour they happened to be born with.

Systemic discrimination my foot

Not only was the United States one of the first countries to constitutionally abolish slavery, its history has shown that the country has continued to fight to make sure that particular amendment (number XIII) is upheld.

Here’s what it says verbatim:

Section 1.

Neither slavery nor involuntary servitude, except as a punishment for crime whereof the party shall have been duly convicted, shall exist within the United States, or any place subject to their jurisdiction.

Section 2.

Congress shall have power to enforce this article by appropriate legislation.

Passed by the Senate on April 8, 1864, and by the House on January 31, 1865, the 16th U.S. President, Abraham Lincoln, signed it into law on February 1, 1965, and the required number of states ratified it on December 6, 1865.

That it would cost Lincoln his life within a few months at the hands of an assassin is another tragic page in U.S. history.

Making sure that this particular amendment becomes reality everybody learns to live by and respect has been a struggle through modern U.S. history.

But none of it constitutes systemic discrimination. Not only has it been banned, but, as time has marched on, equality has become the code word for our existence.

This is not to say there have not been some individual cases of racism. Except, it seems, the definition of racism as used these days is sadly lacking, and so is the definition of discrimination as such.

And, perhaps not even surprisingly, it goes both ways.

Generally speaking, we all discriminate, day in and day out. If we apply for a job and somebody else gets it because s/he has convinced the would-be employer that s/he is the best and most knowledgeable candidate, is it discrimination?

You bet it is.

This is not a frivolous attempt to dismiss an important point with a meaningless attempt at a joke. Why not? Because there have been cases where the unsuccessful candidate would start crying discrimination, or, worse still, racism, and the employer would end up fighting for dear life before all those ideologically bent quasi-judicial human rights commissions.

It is intriguing, on the other hand, that there exist publications where authors of any kind whose skin is other than black need not apply. Ebony magazine, anyone?

Just try to imagine the boot on the other foot.

Can’t see it? Yes, and that’s one of the expressions of racism, too.

Or how about affirmative action?

The original 1961 plan by then-President John F. Kennedy included a provision, according to which government contractors were supposed to make sure that applicants for jobs are hired (and employees treated) fairly, without “regard to their race, creed, colour, or national origin.”

Fair enough.

Kennedy’s successor, Lyndon B. Johnson, added another executive order, demanding that government employers “hire without regard to race, religion and national origin” and “take affirmative action to ensure that applicants are employed, and that employees are treated during employment, without regard to their race, colour, religion, sex or national origin.”

Again, fair enough.

Except, instead of only bridging inequalities in employment and pay, increasing access to education, the plan developed into a project to promote diversity (whatever THAT is supposed to mean, it remains in the eye of the beholder), and redress apparent past wrongs, harms, or hindrances.

That history has shown that you can’t right a wrong by another wrong, has become perfectly irrelevant.

There exist some civilized countries in the world that maintain that giving preference to someone just because of their race, ethnicity (or any other standard other than merit) is not only bad for everybody concerned, it is also harmful for the entire society, including those who have supposedly benefitted.

Not so in the lawsuit-happy United States. It’s gone so far that the U.S. Supreme Court held in 2003 that the University of Michigan Law School could consider race as a plus-factor when evaluating applicants holistically. What the word holistically was supposed to mean in this context is left to any future lawyer’s imagination. The ruling only told the University of Michigan Law School not to use quotas.

Hallelujah, what progress when compared to communist countries that used quotas based on university applicants’ parents’ class origins.

So, what’s the issue?

Some of the most cynical political analysts around the world suggest that the issue is based on the fact that, historically, white-skinned Americans would bend over backwards to make sure there is no unfairness in their country. They have been trying, through their history, to repeal and redress the sins of their foreparents. When those who had cried foul were rewarded, they saw an opportunity to win other, even more important, concessions.

It’s called guilt-trips. Those most cynical political analysts say, today’s would-be victims have developed victimhood into artistically embroidered science.

Now, this concept is not new. Just look at Germany. After World War II, the victorious Allies instilled a deep-seated feeling of collective guilt for Nazi atrocities within her population. So, today’s Germans are willing to do whatever the evangelists of modern political correctness order them to do to clear their consciences of crimes committed by their grandparents.

Yes, that may be part of the problem, more generous analysts would say, but they still believe it is the inferiority complex that leads the black population to a certain level of self-pity that demands that others come, crawling on their knees, banging their heads against concrete floors, crying it’s all their fault. Mea culpa, mea maxima culpa.

After all, why would they be changing their American names to Arabic-sounding names? Are they not aware that it was the Muslim Arabs of Africa who made their ancient ancestors slaves? Are they not aware that it was the Muslim Arabs of Africa who sold their ancient ancestors into slavery overseas? Are they not aware that slavery is still very much kosher among the Muslim Arabs of Africa?

Or: why would they be hyphenating the description of their nationality? African-American? Even the poorest in their communities are better off than most of the real black Africans in Africa.

In the early 19th century, a new state emerged in Africa. It became known as Liberia. It came to exist on a land purchased by an American group that thought it might be useful for black Americans freed from slavery to return to their roots.

While the idea may sound far-fetched these days, it may have had its charm then: the enforced arrivals across the Big Pond in the holds of slave ships were still relatively fresh memory then.

There had lived sundry groups in the area that would become Republic of Liberia: some indigenous tribes, as well as a number of immigrants from other African countries, such as Somalia.

The returnees from overseas would become known as Americo-Liberians. They would hold positions of power until the final years of the 20th century: the country was created for them, after all, so, who else should run it?

This arrangement came to a relatively violent end during the last couple of decades, and one of the accusations hurled at the Americo-Liberians insisted that one of the first things they did upon arrival was to enslave some of the locals.

Be that as it may, the fact remains that the influx of Americo-Liberians has all but dried up since the country’s first few decades of existence.

Is there a lesson to learn?

Your turn.

Like sheep to slaughter, to Generation Five drumbeat

A spectre is haunting the world — the spectre of Generation Five communications systems.

If we rise against it now, not tomorrow or the day after, but now, right away, we still may have a bit of a chance of survival. If we don’t, we’re doomed.

First of all, what is it?

Herewith, an enthusiastic attempt at a definition from the usually reliable LiveScience website: 5G is yet another generation of cellular technology, the next great leap in speed for wireless devices. This speed includes both the rate with which mobile users can download data to their devices and the latency, or lag, they experience between sending and receiving information.

Data delivery rates are 10 to 100 times faster than current 4G networks. Users should expect to see download speeds on the order of gigabits per second (Gb/s), much greater than the tens of megabits per second (Mb/s) speeds of 4G.

Big Brother growing fast

One of the dangers of these new technologies is that they can be abused for all kinds of nefarious social engineering schemes.

Generation Five equipment helps increase the efficiency and effectiveness of yet another technology: electronic face recognition. Not only because of its speed of data transmission. It simply improves what the supporters of humanity’s return to 1984 of George Orwell’s imagination think is an absolutely required feature of government: controlling every citizen’s move and action whenever they are within range of these tools.

And governments are making darned sure that everybody who dares leave their home is within range. Not only the government of the China People’s Republic, where one would expect it (and would not be really too shocked by the news of almost half-a-million of such systems now patrolling almost all of the country). The city of New Glasgow in Canada’s province of Nova Scotia has decided to spend a bit of their taxpayers’ money on installling a network of face recognition cameras, too.

It’s for your own good, they say, it’s for your own safety and security.

Incredibly, but in a debate on the topic on a social media platform, there did appear at least one Canadian who is buying into this nonsense.

Of course, there exists yet another school of thought: if you haven’t done anything wrong, you have nothing to fear.

A minor reminder: if you call your bank, for example, or any similar outfit where money or personal data is involved, the first thing you hear is: this conversation is being recorded. If you have issues with that, tell us in advance.

See, that’s the law. Simply put: no eavesdropping without your knowledge.

What else is face recognition? Especially face recognition using the new, already fifth, generation of software and gadgets to gather data about you without you knowing about it?

Different views? No, different approach to facts

Enthusiasts speak of inevitable technical progress, as if difference in transmission speeds and other such innovations could save the world.

Realists speak of inherent dangers. And there are many of those.

Is it the ability of the new equipment to spy on all and sundry without them ever realizing that whoever wants to know everything about them, can do so through just a few clicks?

Or is it the impact of the newest technology on human health, even in those who prefer talking to one another face to face, without any technical implements standing in the way?

To sum up: the 5G technology can kill us all, but the enthusiasts’ voices sound louder because there is money to be made in building and promoting the new gadgetry.

So, for a change, here is a realist’s call: what the technological enthusiasts do is pure l’art pour l’art (art for the art’s sake, meaning: having no meaning). It does not contribute to our progress one iota. In fact, it is dangerous. Use the good old Mafia logic: when in doubt, have no doubt. Stop the spread of this unwarranted obsession once and for all.

No, this does not mean we should return to caves, start chasing mammoths for subsistence again, try to learn how to start a fire yet again, and forget about the existence of the wheel.

What we should do is follow an old physicians’ risk-to-benefit comparison formula that helps them decide when to use a medication or not. The idea is simple: will this or that pill help the patient, or will its side effects be more dangerous than the benefits of the treatment?

It would sound logical that when a new technology is linked to an increased number of critical, often deadly, ailments, that this particular technology should be removed from circulation until it is either proven beyond any resonable doubt that the link is not real, or until prevention is in place.

As it is now, data show that the negative impact of cellular telephony on human health has been very real (since its inception). That same data show that society as such has not made a single move to have this danger to itself limited, if not removed altogether.

Electronic suicide

The more we learn about nature, the scarier it is.

Yes, our predecessors were scared of every sign of something unusual, from the sounds of thunderstorms all the way to the silence of the vast forests and the howls of wild animals.

But it’s nothing when compared to our knowledge of the Earth’s own energies, of the Universe that surrounds us. And then we learn, as we have only very recently, that our artificial electric (or electronic, if you wish) waves not only interfere with what our planet has been emitting for millions of years. The effect shocks our bodies. It has hit our bodies with incredible suddenness, and we, as human beings, have had no time to prepare ourselves to be able to adjust.

That, in short, and without using any scientific language that supports these findings, is where we’re at. By blindly agreeing to the imposition of these newest technologies, we are committing electronic suicide.

Some may object: but we have never agreed to the introduction of this or that new technology.

Except: silence gives consent. This is an ageless principle, expressed in the good old wedding ceremony formula: speak now or forever hold your peace. Why, you may find it in good old Latin books of wisdom and law as qui tacet consentit,even.

Nobody asked us, either, anyway, others would say.

Absolutely. But why did we all get accustomed to the notion that everybody and their dog would share with the rest of humanity formulas and inventions that not only may be questionable but are, in fact, also part of a potentially profitable business propositions? Where is our own responsibility?

Not to put too fine a point on it, even the World Health Organization (WHO) had warned (nine years ago) that the Radio Frequency radiation (RF for short) can be carcinogenic: RF Radiation can lead to things like cancer, crib death, DNA damage (especially in infants and fetuses) and male infertility.

Generation Five technology spreads its death wings at ultra high frequencies and with ultra high intensity, compared to earlier technologies. That, in and of itself, makes it even more dangerous.

The excitement about the cool things that will help us live faster is contagious. But: yes, we will be able to download movies in a few seconds. Will we live long enough to watch them in their entirety?

What for?

For whatever reason, we have been indoctrinated by the snake-oil merchants of communications that we need to transmit more and more data. Not only that: we need to send and receive that data fast and faster, and to survive, we need the entire country covered, without a single area that can’t accept signals from around the corner.

Malarkey? Malarkey!

The first generation (remember those telephones used so people can speak to one another?) found lower (analogue) frequencies satisfactory. The signal could travel rather long distances, too. Buildings and trees did it little or no harm.

Humans of limited imagination (and/or education) were not satisfied. They asked for more. In return, they got 2G and 3G systems. That gave them texting and even some access to the Internet.

That would lead to higher frequencies.

Nice. But how about full access to the Internet, including video streaming?

Sure, said the snake-oil merchants of communications, here you are: Generation Four.

And now we have Generation Five coming up. We’ll be getting the so-called Internet of things, something too complicated to explain other than that it will connect everything with computer functionality to the Internet. Self-driving cars, refrigerators, making sure your in-house heating is set to temperatures you prefer between the moment you leave your office and the instant you open the garage door at home, all of it, plus all kinds of data sharing.

And someone, you don’t know who, and the snake-oil merchants of communications won’t tell you, will have all of this information about you at their fingertips. Be it your government, or another government, or a bunch of hackers out for ill-gained profit, either option is scary.

Besides, this 5G technology will require many more relay stations than today’s technologies ever dreamt of. Meaning: the strength of their signal, that is, the signal that has direct impact on your health, will be that much higher.

What should we do?

We have nothing to lose but our (and our children’s, and their children’s) health and freedom. We have our health and freedom (and that of our children, and their children) to win. Thinking people of all countries, unite!

Is the mass hysteria of social distancing based on science?

One of the main demands put on general public these days: stay six feet away from one another.

It’s called social distancing.

But why six feet? Because graves have been dug traditionally to that depth?

Can’t be. Because those who insist on the six feet here in Canada make it equal to two meters, which is wrong: six feet equals 1.8288 metres, almost 13 centimetres less than two metres. For those keen on Imperial values, that would equal more than five inches.

So, what the heck is the reason?

Elementary, as Sherlock Holmes used to tell his sidekick, Dr. Watson. It’s insufficient identifying abilities of today’s face recognition technologies that has brought the six feet to the forefront. Faces closer to one another less than six feet get blurred.

Why is it important? Because governments use face recognition technologies much more than they used to.

Yes, governments: police and intelligence agencies are run by government. Not that these agencies are owned by government. On paper, in democracy, we (meaning: we the people) own them. Governments only operate them on our behalf.

And, oh, by the way, these technologies tend to be racist and sexist, too: they have frightful difficulty identifying people of darker skin colour, and, for whatever reasons of their own, female faces.

But that’s another topic, for another day. Suffice it to say that face recognition technology is still reliably in its diapers. And yet, it’s used not only for unlocking telephones and sundry such activities, but also for government-led and controlled surveillance on unsuspecting people.

Which brings us back full circle to social distancing, one of the features of the mass hysteria provoked by fears of a virus. And the real danger to our basic freedoms, meanwhile, remains in the background. Those who had never experienced dictatorship echo the government’s idiotic slogan that claims that we’re all in this together, walking around in face masks that are much more dangerous to their health than any flu-like disease.

Those who did experience dictatorship are trying to object, only to be dismissed using the moronic label of conspiracy theorists.

Oh, by the way, a theory requires proof. So those who dismiss the objectors are basically confirming that they do have a case. Except: they dismiss it.

To put it bluntly: what we are experiencing these days is a thoroughly programmed and executed attempt to return us all into serfdom. And if you think this is too dramatic a statement, you may as well start thinking again.

Sequence of events

It all begins with news that a dangerous virus has somehow escaped a Level 4 laboratory in the Chinese city of Wuhan, and that is has been killing all and sundry. We get to see dramatic footage, taken from a vehicle driving frantically fast through dark streets of what we are told is Wuhan, showing lines of persons in all kinds of safety clothing, with canisters filled with unspecified fluids on their backs, spraying the place like nobody’s business. There are piles of something covered in black on the sidewalks: these, we are told, are bodies of the hapless Wuhan residents who didn’t manage to run away fast enough.

One minor issue with that: television reporting during the next few days uses the same footage. The sequence changes from time to time, but still: these are the same pictures we had seen in the beginning.

Reminds one of the times when television crews, especially those from Western Europe and the U.S., found a street in Lebanon’s Bekka Valley, and began using it as background for their reporting. It was during the 1983 Lebanon conflict with Israel. The street was indeed in ruins: it used to house the various command posts of the many terrorist groups that used to attack Israel. The Israelis used to call the place TV Alley, and when asked why they didn’t do anything about this blatant misrepresentation of facts the western television had been conveying to their unsuspecting audiences, they would only shrug: we’re not into censorship.

Back to China: the World Health Organization originally proclaimed this was a local matter for local authorities to handle.

A few days later it would become a pandemic, so far as the WHO was concerned.

Playing it by the ear?

Except: the WHO had changed its criteria for evaluating the spread of dangerous health risks about a dozen years ago. It removed the two most important ones: increased morbidity (number of ill people compared to number of citizens in a given territory in a given period of time) and increased mortality (number of fatalities compared to number of citizens i

n a given territory in a given period of time), leaving only the third one: it suffices now that a virus spreads continually across more continents than one. But that, says Dr. Wolfgang Wodarg, happens with most cases of influenza or herpes virus.

Dr. Who? Dr. Wolfgang Wodarg. A German specialist in internal medicine, concentrating on pneumology (lung diseases), as well as having worked in the field of epidemiology at the world-famous Johns Hopkins University at Baltimore, he knows the other side of the coin, too: he represented the German social-democratic party (SPD) in the country’s Parliament (Bundestag) for 15 years, as well as heading the health committee of the Europe Council (Consilium Europa). That is a collective body that defines the European Union’s overall political direction and priorities. The Europe Council consists of all heads of state or government of European Union member states, along with the President of the European Council and the President of the European Commission.

It was during Dr. Wodarg’s time at EU when he discovered the change in the WHO definition and the reasons that had led to it.

Dr. Wodarg led the EU health committee during the bird flu (Avian influenza, caused by the H1N1 virus, 2009) and swine flu (also H1N1 virus, 2009-2010) periods, and it was his job to find out how these cases could develop.

The investigation led to shocking results, Dr. Wodarg testified then, and does so to this day.

Here’s one of the 2010 stories in the British newspaper, Daily Mail ( You can continue reading on here, with the summary that extends to 10 years later, that is, to today.

Dr. Wodarg found that the WHO definition changed very shortly before the first 2009 pandemic declaration. According to him, the swine flu was one of the mildest flu waves then known to humanity. He initiated official hearings during which his committee demanded that the WHO explain its steps, one by one. The main question: why did WHO declare a pandemic when there was none?

The findings were shocking: a horrifyingly overwhelming (Dr. Wodarg’s own description) number of medical professors serving as advisers to the WHO had (and still have) an unbelievable conflict of interest. They acted and still do under the pressure of pharmaceutical companies.

Obviously, there is not much need to elaborate on the pharmaceutical companies’ reasons: money smells like roses no matter how earned.

Dr. Wodarg offered his findings on today’s coronavirus pandemic to leading German newspapers, such as the Frankfurter Allgemeine Zeitung or the Süddeutsche Zeitung, in an attempt to reduce the growing general panic.

Both newspapers rejected his offers, saying such publication would be inappropriate, improper, even.

Now what?

Bill Gates became rich off the sales of disc operating systems created for the almighty IBM and all of the clones of its personal computing devices.

How he had become an expert in public health, virology and epidemiology has never been stated.

Where he first encountered Thomas Robert Malthus’s theories is also a mystery wrapped in an enigma.

Malthus was, first and foremost, an English cleric. A priest who rose all the way to the office of a curate, that is. His thinking has always been along the lines of ideology. He decided to try his hand in the field of economics. So far as he was concerned, the only valid part of the science of economics was what we now call political economy. The only issue here: economics is not about ideology. But nobody told Malthus that he was about to enter a slippery slope.

Malthus published An Essay on the Principle of Population in 1798. A frightfully static theory: more food results in more people, and more people means less food for everybody concerned (per capita, that is, to use importantly sounding foreign words).

But, and here comes a shock, Malthus never said the Earth was over-populated.

People who came after him, including Bill Gates, did.

A number of hypotheses would follow this post-Malthusian would-be discovery, including such humanitarian movements like eugenics (killing people whose mental, physical or racial qualities did not meet the standard, whatever that standard was supposed to mean).

Bill Gates is on record as agreeing with this train of thought, so successfully implemented by Adolf Hitler’s Third Reich. Of course, he does not say that Hitler was correct. It may very well be that he is not even aware that he is quoting from Nazi Germany’s Nuremberg laws.

Dreadful silence

The most frightening thing here is that none of this is making mainstream media headlines. And when someone dares mention that vaccination as such has been and still remains a rather questionable method of achieving immunity against sundry diseases, today’s so-called social media platforms are quick to label such daring people as quacks, illiterate morons, conspiracy theorists. With those noble words, they censor anyone who has the gall to suggest that so-called accepted science means nothing. After all, the notion that the Sun circles around the Earth used to be accepted science, too, and cost quite a few who dared to differ their lives.

Another gag order

A theory (not so new, by the way) seems to prove beyond any doubt that the modern communications systems that help spread so-called cellular telephony are a present danger to pedestrians and traffic. There used to be headlines about, for example, real estate agents who would spend days on end with their cell phones close to their ears all the time while they were awake: the number of brain tumours in this particular group had grown beyond acceptable levels.

That is nothing when compared to today’s systems. The newest one, so-called Generation Five (G5), its inventors claim, can do everything. Ever heard the expression: Internet of Things? Basically, all kinds of tools and things we use in our everyday lives no longer need us. They can operate without human involvement. People would only slow it down.

That it is used to spy on us all is one thing. That the G5 use of frequencies can cause and does cause some diseases compared to which all viruses are kindergarten games, is another.

Where are the headlines demanding at least an explanation, if not removal of this anti-human technology outright?

Simple: nowhere.

What is important

There have been stories circulating around the world about the viruses and the scandals surrounding them. Some more outrageous than others. Some more revealing than others.

For example: several intelligence agencies have reported that the Wuhan Lab went dark for two weeks right after Oct. 6, 2019. Apparently there were no phone calls coming in or going out, and nobody would bat an eye. A few weeks later, stories about a virus coming from the wet market, killing hundreds of thousands, ruining most of the world’s economies, becomes the main headline grabbers.

But: where are the headlines about China People’s Republic imposing a new sedition and subversion legislation on Hong Kong? It would enable its feared state security police to operate in the city that had been promised it would be allowed to continue living under its traditional freedoms under the 1997 handover to China.

Where are the headlines about the new war heating up in Libya?

And, most importantly, where are the headlines about governments stealing our rights and freedoms with impunity, telling us they are acting in our interest?

And the final question: why do we let them get away with it?

Is the mass hysteria of social distancing based on science?

via Is the mass hysteria of social distancing based on science?

Russia vetoes probe into Malaysian airliner crash

So far as admissions of guilt are concerned, this one ranks with the best of them: Russia, one of the five permanent members of the United Nations’ Security Council, vetoed the idea of creating an investigative tribunal to probe the Malaysian airline flight MH17 catastrophe.

The aircraft was shot down while flying at about 11,000 kilometres above the Donbass region of Ukraine. Most of the evidence available thus far points to Russia’s involvement.

The incident cost the lives of 298 people. Vitaly Churkin, Russia’s Security Council representative, was the only person present to reject the tribunal plan out of hand. He didn’t have to explain anything. Neither do China, France, the United Kingdom and the United States have to explain why they veto any so-called “substantive” Security Council resolution, and the decision which resolution is substantive and which isn’t is theirs, too.

Here are the rules: the permanent members can abstain (not vote, that is), or make themselves scarce while a vote is underway (thus, not vote, again), but these moves haven’t got the effect of a veto. Only a majority vote against it or a veto can stop a Security Council resolution in its tracks.

And only the five permanent members, as established at the creation of the United Nations in 1945, have the right of veto.

Well, nobody has ever said that the United Nations is a democratic body, after all.

Here are the basic facts: 11 of the 15 Security Council members voted for the resolution submitted jointly by Malaysia, Australia, the Netherlands and Ukraine. China, Angola and Venezuela abstained. Russia had been saying all along that the resolution would not pass. Now, it made sure of it.

Dutch prime minister Mark Rutte went so far as to telephone Russia’s president Vladimir Putin, to ask him to reconsider. To no avail.

Why, oh why?

Russia’s official reaction is simple: the tribunal would develop into an instrument of anti-Russian propaganda, and besides, you’d have to find the guilty party (parties) first, and judge them only after you’ve found them.

This has been known for decades as the Andrei Yanuarevich Vyshinsky theory of jurisprudence: once you’re brought before a court, it means you’re guilty.

Presumption of innocence? HUH? The accuser has to prove the accused’s guilt? HUH? The accused is innocent until proven guilty? What the heck are you talking about?

Vyshinsky’s approach worked splendidly during Josef Vissarionovich Stalin’s trials. True, some would later claim the trials were only based on occasional errors but, otherwise, Stalin was right, and so was, by extension, Vyshinsky.

Of course, what Russia’s behaviour caused is known as the boomerang effect. Thus Malaysia’s transportation minister, Liow Tiong Lai: “(This) sends a dangerous message about the impunity perpetrators of this heinous crime can enjoy.”

U.S. Security Council Ambassador, Samantha Power, said Russian veto will only bring more pain to victims’ families. Left unspoken: they would logically link their pain to Russia’s unwillingness to help find the perpetrators.

Russia’s Churkin said establishing a tribunal would have been premature. He said his country has always been prepared to cooperate in a full, independent and objective investigation.

Investigators who had been probing the crash since it happened have looked at the latter statement askance. What they have encountered so far has been anything but Russia’s cooperation.

Basic debate

The Malaysian airliner, en route from Amsterdam to Kuala Lumpur, came crashing down in the area of Ukraine controlled by pro-Russian separatists last July.

Experts say the plane was brought down by a ground-to-air missile launched in a Russian separatist-controlled area. They said it was a weapon nobody else but the Russian army had in its arsenal at the time.

Russia revealed recently a digital video recording that, it says, proves the plane was shot down using an air-to-air missile, launched from a Ukrainian fighter jet.

One minor mistake of major proportions: experts analyzed the digital video file and found conclusive evidence that it was fake.

Another Russian theory: Ukrainian army launched the ground-to-air missile.

Another minor oversight: the Ukrainians had no access to this kind of weaponry.

And, of course, a recently revealed video that shows the pro-Russian separatists inspecting the debris, exclaiming, oh, but we didn’t know this was a civilian plane, and similar words to that effect, isn’t helping the official Russian cause, either.

Ukrainian authorities, aware that the Russians would not accept any evidence they would present, gave up their right of investigation and transferred it to the Dutch. So, the office for airline safety of the Netherlands has received all of the debris, and has been trying to find the reasons for the crash. Its job is not to find the perpetrators. The Dutch attorney general’s office has been trying to find those guilty. It put together a commission that includes experts from Ukraine and the countries whose citizens had been among the victims.

There are no Russians on this body, and this makes Moscow even more paranoid.

Considering Russia has for centuries acted on the premise “it’s us against them,” and “everybody’s against us, and we know it,” no wonder its government is openly suspicious.

It remains to be seen what the Kremlin is going to think, say and do if Ukraine’s government decides to propose the formation of a similar tribunal at its earliest convenience at the United Nations’ General Assembly. To win, they would require just two-thirds of the vote, and Russia would be able to vote in any shape or form, but without the right of a veto.

The only problem: none of this is going to bring the 298 victims back.

Russian doping case just won’t go away

Ben Johnson and Marion Jones, step aside. Your doping scandals have been thrashed through the media left, right and centre. Yet, they can’t even begin to compare to what Russian sports authorities have done to show what can happen when winning (at all cost) is everything.

Russian athletes have been accused of doping on a scale unheard of before. What has happened since?

Not much.

Following the alleagtions published some time ago in various European media, representatives of the World Anti-Doping Agency (WADA) have gone to Moscow and left the Russian capital a few days later with more than 3,000 samples. They took all of it to a specialized laboratory in Köln am Rhein in Germany. Considering Russia’s sports minister Vitaly Mutka told the Reuters news agency on the occasion that his country will provide WADA with everything, it raises a few uncomfortable questions. Such as: who guarantees that the samples WADA has loaded on the plane have never been tampered with? Not that one is paranoid but: the Russians have a history rich on disinformation (bluntly put: lies and obfuscation).

So, here’s the question again: who is making the guarantees everything’s above board and nobody’s trying to make any deals under the table?

It’s not a rhetorical question. And here’s the answer: nobody.

In case you’re wondering: remember, for example, the Chernobyl nuclear station meltdown? The one where everybody all over the world knew there was an unexpected release or radioactive material into the air in the Soviet terrirory (most reports went so far as to pinpoint the location within a few centimetres), and yet, the Soviets kept denying it all for days on end?

Or, to remain within recent memory, remember the Kursk submarine that went down in the Arctic, all and sundry aware of the tragedy and offering a number of helping hands, with the Soviets first denying there even was such a submarine, then, denying that it had some kind of technical malfunction, then, denying that they can’t save it by themselves, and, then, letting the entire crew die while help was just around the corner?

So, one more time: nobody can guarantee that everything’s going to be above board, with no under-the-table deals, so help us Nature. Not with the Russians in on it. Not with their president (a former KGB spy) in on it. Not with his KGB cronies helping him run the country any way they felt was useful – to them.

Here’s what happened

Originally, this scandal involved only the International Association of Athletics Federations (IAAF). It would spread across the sporting spectrum as a forest fire in no time. Russian track-and-field athletes, swimmers, cyclists, biathlonists, cross-country skiers and weight lifters face charges of doping. Russian sports bodies’ chiefs stand accused of participating in a massive conspiracy that permitted all that.

IAAF President Lamine Diack’s own son, Papa Massata Diack, has been involved personally, too. Young Diack has been IAAF’s marketing poohbah. This gives nepotism a brand new meaning.

Germany’s ARD television network charged recently that young Diack had personally helped Russian marathoner Lilya Shobukhova make her 2009 positive out-of-competition doping test disappear from the record so she could take part in the 2012 Olympic Games in London. She paid 450,000 Euros through her coach Alexei Melnikov.

Not that it helped much: Lilya Shobukhova didn’t finish due to injury.

The French newspaper, l’Equippe, found more documentation. Some of it links Russia’s widespread doping culture directly to the office of then-prime minister (and today’s president) Vladimir Putin.

In fact, decrees authorizing Russian sports bodies to use all means at their disposal (whatever THAT is supposed to mean) to achieve victories have come down under Putin’s own signature.

Russian officials, as could have been expected, denied the ARD and l’Equippe reports as smear campaign filled with innuendo and nothing more. Except, just several months earlier, these same officials had banned that same marathoner Lilya Shobukhova for two years because of doping. To add insult to injury, Lilya Shobukhova now went public, saying that some of the money she had to pay for the cover-up has been refunded to her.

The entire operation was easy enough. The athlete to be tested under the so-called out-of-competition protocol would be notified well in advance that the testers were coming, with precise date, time and place included in the warning. Most of the tests require collection of urine samples. Still, those athletes were allowed the privacy of their own washrooms, with the commissioners waiting (discreetly) outside. That, despite the requirement that the commissioners were supposed to be present at all times when the samples were collected.

Dr. Gabriel Dollé, the director of the medical and anti-doping department at the IAAF, stepped down after he had been interviewed by this august body’s ethics commission.

How perfectly honourable!

The German TV ARD and French paper l’Equippe’s probes found many more details. Not that they had any sporting ideals in mind when they went public with them. Titillating scandals such as these help enhance ratings. Better ratings help enhance advertising. Better advertising helps enhance the health of the bottom line.

Running concern

Sir Sebastian Coe, the legendary British middle-distance runner, boss of the 2012 London Olympic Games and the man expected to become the IAAF chief in the not-so-distant future says track-and-field is facing its worst crisis in the last four decades.

Depends on how you view it.

Canada’s own Ben Johnson had to return his gold at the Olympics at Seoul, South Korea in 1988. He won it in the crowning track-and-field race, 100 metres dash.

America’s own Marion Jones was involved in the doping lab BALCO scandal, and, sportingly enough, was economical with the truth when speaking to U.S. federal investigators. That landed her behind bars.

Johnson’s gold would eventually go to America’s Carl Lewis. This guy distinguished himself by not getting caught. Nobody in their right mind would believe that a human can run at 40 km per hour speeds. Horses can do that. Not humans.

Not surprisingly, the drug Johnson was caught with was Stanozolol, a medication used most frequently to improve muscle growth, red blood cell production, increase bone density and stimulate the appetite of debilitated or weakened (what? yes, you do hear it right!) horses. Stanozolol can be used for people, too, to help treat anemia and similar conditions. But definitely not in doses whose traces were found in Johnson’s body.

The numerous medals won by Marion Jones went all over the place to other female athletes whose medical and coaching staffs knew better than to associate with BALCO too openly.

Sir Sebastian used to face accusations of cheating himself, too.

Again, the point of view depends on the angle.

Having noticed that most African runners spend most of their time training in high altitudes, only to come down to race in lower elevations and beat everybody hands down, Sebastian Coe (as he was then) followed in their footsteps.

Is that cheating?

If you tried to replicate the effect training at high altitudes has on an athlete’s body by injecting oxygen into an athlete’s blood, it would be called blood doping. That’s illegal. If, on the other hand, you were to spend a few months in, for example, the Andes, now, that would be considered an innovative approach to training. Yet, the effect is the same.

Was Sebastian Coe cheating? You be the judge.

That uncomfortable angle might, however, explain Sir Sebastian’s calls for prudence. Still, he said, if the accusations are proven beyond any doubt, the penalties should be harsh enough to deter any followers.

He’s definitely not afraid of the embarassment a proper clean-up job would cause the sports to suffer, Sir Sebastian said. He is scared that if people try to sweep all these allegations under the proverbial rug, spectators would lose any interest they have had so far in watching sports.

Which is all this is about.

Sir Sebastian should have mentioned Russian officials’ penchant for publishing fake information, distributing falsified data all over the place or, to put it bluntly, lying through their teeth. It’s called disinformation, and if anyone’s a past master in this field of human endeavour, it’s the Russians. History proves it beyond any doubt, reasonable or not.

Sir Sebastian didn’t say it. Why not? As mentioned, he’s a presumed heir to the top post at the IAAF. Except, he still would face a vote by the body’s general assembly. Here are the numbers: the IAAF consists of 212 member federations. It used to be 213 but the November 2010 meeting of the IAAF Council found that the Netherlands Antilles was going to cease its independent existence.

Like it or not, the Russians still carry considerable weight within that body. They can have unhealthy influence on the outcome of the voting. So, Sir Sebastian, who used to say the Russians ought to be stripped of all of their medals and let’s be done with it once and for all, is now backpedalling. Ever so gently, but still, distinctly enough.

So, what’s the issue?

The issue is that all this outcry and indignation are hypocritical.

Nothing more, and nothing less, either.

Professional sports are all about business. They are part of entertainment industry. So, they do their utmost to entertain. If they were to manage to find ways for humans to catch lightning with bare hands and twist its shape according to their spectators’ wishes, so much the better.

That people are wiling to pay good money to watch well-trained humans (animals would seem to sound better and closer to the truth) performing acts beyond the limits of human abilities is a strange phenomenon. It’s not particularly new. Attendance at Greek Olympiads, predecessors of the modern extravaganzas, would make today’s organizers turn yellow with envy. Doping and outright cheating were a normal way of doing things then, and nobody would even bother to shrug about it, let alone create expensive bodies to oversee what these bodies call “the cleanliness of the sports.”

That professional sports would develop into a global business of such gigantic proportions is a sign not of the athletes’ godly (or ungodly?) abilities but of pure marketing genius.

It is also a sign of something more sinister. Nobody described it better than the British writer, George Orwell. He wrote an essay for the Tribune newspaper in December of 1945, commenting on the visit of Soviet football team Dynamo. Some people, not so much out of sheer naivete but, rather, knowing a marketing opening when they saw one, would go so far as the herald the visit as a sign of everlasting peace between the democratic (no matter how Royal) Great Britain, and the communist Soviet Union.

After all, who could blame them if “everlasting” didn’t last even till the end of Soviet footballers’ trip to Great Britain? The organizers (meaning: the guys who promised everlasting peace) have collected the spectators’ money and spent the rest of the time laughing all the way to the bank.

That average people in both countries were still going hungry following the war was not much of a concern to them.

Anyhow, herewith a few quotes from George Orwell’s piece.

The Sporting Spirit

I am always amazed when I hear people saying that sport creates goodwill between the nations, and that if only the common peoples of the world could meet one another at football or cricket, they would have no inclination to meet on the battlefield. Even if one didn’t know from concrete examples (the 1936 Olympic Games, for instance) that international sporting contests lead to orgies of hatred, one could deduce it from general principles.

Nearly all the sports practised nowadays are competitive. You play to win, and the game has little meaning unless you do your utmost to win. On the village green, where you pick up sides and no feeling of local patriotism is involved, it is possible to play simply for the fun and exercise: but as soon as the question of prestige arises, as soon as you feel that you and some larger unit will be disgraced if you lose, the most savage combative instincts are aroused. Anyone who has played even in a school football match knows this. At the international level sport is frankly mimic warfare. But the significant thing is not the behaviour of the players but the attitude of the spectators: and, behind the spectators, of the nations who work themselves into furies over these absurd contests, and seriously believe — at any rate for short periods — that running, jumping and kicking a ball are tests of national virtue.

People want to see one side on top and the other side humiliated, and they forget that victory gained through cheating or through the intervention of the crowd is meaningless. …

Then, chiefly in England and the United States, games were built up into a heavily-financed activity, capable of attracting vast crowds and rousing savage passions, and the infection spread from country to country. It is the most violently combative sports, football and boxing, that have spread the widest. There cannot be much doubt that the whole thing is bound up with the rise of nationalism — that is, with the lunatic modern habit of identifying oneself with large power units and seeing everything in terms of competitive prestige.

If you wanted to add to the vast fund of ill-will existing in the world at this moment, you could hardly do it better than by a series of football matches between Jews and Arabs, Germans and Czechs, Indians and British, Russians and Poles, and Italians and Jugoslavs, each match to be watched by a mixed audience of 100,000 spectators. I do not, of course, suggest that sport is one of the main causes of international rivalry; big-scale sport is itself, I think, merely another effect of the causes that have produced nationalism. Still, you do make things worse by sending forth a team of eleven men, labelled as national champions, to do battle against some rival team, and allowing it to be felt on all sides that whichever nation is defeated will “lose face”.

Thus spake George Orwell in 1945. Remember: in 1945. Thus spake George Orwell 69 years ago.

He said it all, and let’s leave it at that.

Toronto’s Olympic dream Canada’s nightmare

Why the people of Toronto continue to think that their collection of villages is the centre of the universe as we know it remains a sweet mystery.

Why many others across Canada seem to keep swallowing this nonsense hook, sink and line has become an enigma beyond belief, too.

On the heels of the Pan American Games, whose bill is yet to be revealed, so all of us learn how much this sham is going to cost us, there seems to be a growing sentiment abroad, insisting that Toronto should bid for the 2024 Olympic Games. Why, they say, it’s the ideal moment in history: the PanAm Games have been a resounding success (says who? Oh, they say so, which means that’s how it’s got to be!), and besides, the other potential North American suitor has just pulled out of the contest. A window of opportunity if there ever was one!

If only they listened to what Boston’s Mayor Martin S. Walsh had to say.

Announcing that he was asked to sign a contract that would guarantee that the city of Boston would be responsible for potential financial losses, Mayor Walsh said he couldn’t in good conscience do anything of the kind. He is of the view that this ought to be somebody else’s responsibility (read: the organizers ought to be responsible, not the taxpayers). Besides, he was asked to sign a document the precise language of which would be revealed to him some two months after he had signed on the dotted line. No option to negotiate, Mayor Walsh added, and that sealed it for him.

In that one sentence, Mayor Walsh revealed the criminality of the Olympic system as we’ve known it for decades.

Olala, Marcel!

Enter Marcel Aubut, head of the Canadian Olympic Committee.

To refresh everybody’s memory (in case it needs refreshing), that would be the same Marcel Aubut who drafted Eric Lindros first overall in 1991 even though he had been perfectly aware that Lindros would refuse to join the Quebec Nordiques no matter what. As a result, Lindros, considered by many Wayne Gretzky’s second coming, would lose an entire NHL season. That makes Aubut’s move even more unconscionable. As a hockey official of extensive experience Aubut must have known that professional players’ careers are limited.

And he crowned this sordid drama by trading Lindros a year later to two teams (the excuse that he and Pierre Page had no way of informing one another about their individual but separate talks does not hold water). The case had to be settled by an independent arbitrator, a scene that still makes the crowd at 1185 Avenue of the Americas in New York cringe.

To refresh everybody’s memory again (in case it still needs refreshing), that would be the same Marcel Aubut under whose personal and expert guidance the Quebec Nordiques were eventually forced to leave Quebec City in a financial shambles, only to resurface in Denver as the Colorado Avalanche and win the Stanley Cup within a year.

Of course, in fairness, who knows whether the Avalanche would have won anything without the presence of Patrick Roy in their net? It seems quite obvious that, had the Nordiques stayed put, theirs wouldn’t be the club the Montreal Canadiens would trade Roy to.

But that is hindsight. The fact that remains is that it was Marcel Aubut who caused the Lindros scandal, and that it was Marcel Aubut who helped bring the Nordiques to financial ruin and ignominious departure.

So, having this guy say that “It’s time to make it crystal clear, I am officially declaring that I will use the full power of my office to lead and advocate for Toronto’s candidacy to hold the 2024 Olympic Games,” that would be a clarion call for everybody concerned to run for cover.

Not so easy

Let them apply, so what? many might suggest.

Alas, that’s not how it works.

To put together a presentation for an Olympic Games bid costs money. There are firms that specialize in this kind of work. They charge their clients for every box of Kleenex they use when they happen to sneeze. With the deadline for bid submissions set for September 15, 2015, these consultants would have to work pretty hard and fast. Double (or triple) the original demand in order to account for the deadline pressure.

So, taxpayers would be shelling out their hard-earned loonies just so the International Olympic Committee (IOC) members have something to read in their leisure time. Without any guarantee whatsoever. Marcel Aubut might be presenting himself as a heavy hitter whose word spreads general fear in the IOC offices in Lausanne, Switzerland, but, in fact, he’s a featherweight so far as the Olympic poohbahs are concerned.

But, while the Olympians get set to gather to ponder on the individual bids by hicks who are willing to mortgage their citizens’ future for the chance they might appear on TV screens, bidding cities will have to prove they have sufficient facilities to host events on such scale.

No problem, the Toronto bid supporters will yell, we’ve just had the PanAm Games, and our facilities worked just fine.

First of all, they would be lying through their teeth. Track-and-field experts have been shocked by the small-country-county ambience of Toronto’s fields. Even Edmonton’s Commonwealth Stadium worked better during the track-and-field world championships in 2001.

Besides, the Olympic would-be royalty demands that their events happen in brand new facilities. They claim, as an excuse, that these facilities would then remain as legacy for future generations to use. Another bald-faced lie. There have been exceptions, to be sure. Some of the winter sports facilities in Calgary still remain in use. But going into more detail would reveal some horror stories that are better left for windy and rainy autumn nights. They are best shared by crowds that are sitting by the fireplace, with toddies all around. These stories are scarier than most of the Halloween costumes people could ever imagine.

In any case, even facilities built brand-new for the PanAm Games would be obsolete (in Olympians’ view) nine years hence.

Here’s what happens

Hordes of realtors, developers and sundry financiers will overwhelm all levels of government telling them this or that kind of work’s got to be done immediately, even before the Olympic crowd bothers to descend upon the bidding city. Whether it’s a conspiracy, as many Olympic watchers suspect, remains to be seen. But the fact is that, when asked, Olympic officials will nod in agreement: what, you didn’t read the fine print?

Interestingly enough, government officials proceed to spend like crazy sailors on shore leave. After all, it’s not their money they are spending. And there is a sufficient number of fools amongst their electorate who fall for the shamelessly idiotic propaganda about the Olympic Games. It’s the greatest sporting event on earth, and one that takes its responsibilities seriously, whether it’s the environment or the cleanliness of the athletes. We as citizens should be proud that the august Olympians decided that ours is the best spot on planet Earth to hold this event, that’s the motto.

And not even the fact that it took Montreal almost four decades to pay off its Olympic debt, and that it’s going to take Vancouver about that same amount of time to pay off its Olympic debt changes the hoopla.

If the Olympic Games were produced and paid for by private organizers and if they made money in the process, three cheers for them.

But since the Olympic Games are produced and paid for by taxpayers who have literally no say in what is going on, the picture changes.

There have been case studies during which analysts presented private entrepreneurs with Olympic budgets and accounting books, so far as they could lay their hands on them.

The private entrepreneurs were shocked both by the budgets and by the accounting that followed.

To use a most recent Canadian example, none of them would have thought of bringing snow (using trucks and helicopters) from Manning Park all the way to the mountains around Vancouver.

The more thoughtful people in the entrepreneurial crowd hated what they saw. Not because none of them got to hop on the gravy train. Because they saw where their taxes were going, and they didn’t like it one bit.

To be sure, by the way, this kind of megalomania is not limited to Canada.

During the 2014 Winter Olympics in Sochi, Russia, alpine skiing events took place quite far from the sea shores, separated from the Black Sea by massive mountain ranges. The organizers, in an attempt to make access easier for the tourist hordes who would want to watch the break-neck artists hurtling down the slopes, broke through the mountains. One tunnel after another, one artificial pass after another. The result: the moist sea air made it all the way through to the alpine events areas. Tons of artificial snow and sundry chemicals made the slopes acceptable for the skiers. Not for the nature. The alpine meadows have been devastated beyond belief and it will take decades for the scientists to be able to say whether they would ever recover.

So much for the Olympians’ environmental responsibility.

But sports are good for your health!

Absolutely. But not sports as performed at highest-level events.

First and foremost, to even have a chance of becoming an Olympic-level athlete, you’d have to become a professional in your chosen field. Nobody can make it on talent alone any longer.

Becoming an Olympic athlete is no guarantee of success, either.

Now, if you decide you want to spend the rest of your productive life jumping over hurdles or throwing all kinds of stuff so far as they can fly, it’s your business. You may even think that what you’re doing is useful for society. It’s your right to have opinions.

The buck stops once you accept a cent of public funding. And getting money from sports federations equals exactly that. These bodies wouldn’t be able to survive a single season without getting government support.

As an athlete, you may claim that you are presenting yourself as a role model for the younger crowd so that they become hooked on sports, too.

There’s nothing easier to explode than this myth. If money various levels of governments grant to various sports federations, up to and including the Olympic committee, were spread among schools, so they can build and maintain sports facilities, hire and keep physical education teachers, and are able to keep physical education as a daily class on their schedules, that would be the proper way of engaging in sports.

The highly trained gladiators just don’t cut it. And that’s ignoring all their doping and other dirty shenanigans.

To sum this angle up: the federal government has, quite properly, resisted spending taxpayers’ money in support of professional hockey clubs.

It should tell the same thing to all those who come, caps in hands, asking for federal government support in staging events such as the Olympic Games. The government is not in the business of professional sports.

And if those would-be organizers start pushing their point by saying what an economic bonanza their event would turn out to be, the government should issue a collective smile and say: Is that so? So, go ahead, invest, and be successful. We’ll watch your progress with considerable interest.

And if the potential organizers, blackmailers, one and all, start crying, the answer should be even simpler. Let them eat cake.

Note to NHL: public money and private business do not mix

As gall goes, Gary Bettman has set new standards.

In a live interview on Hockey Night in Canada  the other day, Scott Oake apologized for even broaching the subject, and then he asked a logical question: what’s the NHL commissioner’s view of the City of Glendale’s decision to quit the agreement they had with the Arizona Coyotes?

Why did Oake feel he had to apologize? It was hot news of the moment, and he was speaking to the boss of the outfit that has had a keen interest in the matter.

Apologies or not, Bettman’s answer showed anger unbecoming of a person in his position. And it showed an arrogance that in just a couple of sentences displayed for everybody to see everything that’s wrong with professional sports on the business level.

Corporate welfare is the best description of what professional sports teams have been abusing. They’ve been getting away with public financing of new arenas, special deals, and whatever they could obtain, ripping off the (mostly unsuspecting) taxpayer all along. And, most surprising, shocking, even, they have felt they are entitled.

Which brings us to the outburst of anger one isn’t used to see in a Gary Bettman.

Unhappy council

The good members of the Glendale city council have had enough of the Arizona Coyotes shenanigans. They couldn’t get majority owner Andrew Barroway to talk to them. When they asked the minority owner, Anthony LeBlanc, about reports of some financial transactions that allegedly went against both the letter and the spirit of the deal the city had with the club, all they would get was incoherent obfuscations. Mr. Barroway, thus Mr. LeBlanc, is a busy man. He runs a hedge fund in New York, you see. The message was obvious: he hasn’t time to spare to talk to the hicks who run the city of Glendale.

So, council members decided to look for a hole that would get them out of the deal. They said so publicly that this was their plan. A few weeks later, Mr. Barroway and Mr. LeBlanc managed to find time in their preciously crowded schedules to meet with the mayor of Glendale, his deputy, and a few city officials. No coffee was served, no sandwiches were available. According to some reports, there were a couple bottles of water somewhere in the room.

That wasn’t the important part. The important part was that city representatives told Coyotes’ owners they were unhappy about the entire scenario and would like to open discussions about making a few changes here and there. The Coyotes’ owners said absolutely no way. To top it off, Mr. LeBlanc said they were ambushed. Either he’s illiterate and doesn’t know how to read regular newspapers (or their associated websites), and nobody read it to him, or he just doesn’t care what the city of Glendale has been saying rather publicly for quite some time.

If he wasn’t making it up and this was the first time Mr. LeBlanc had heard about the city’s distinct lack of happiness about the deal, it speaks volumes about his entrepreneurial incompetence.

In either case, ignorance is no excuse.

City in the poorhouse

The city of Glendale has been suffering for quite some time. It has had difficulties meeting its own financial obligations. Compared to just a few years ago, the city government’s workforce has been cut by almost 20 per cent. Enforced furloughs, vacant positions going unfilled, merging departments, you name it, the city has used all of these methods, and then some. Yet, it’s still unable to buy a new firetruck or open a new public library.

There might be studies that would find why this has been happening. There might be studies trying to figure out who or what is guilty of it all. But they are not relevant for the Arizona Coyotes soap opera. The city’s economic situation is what it is, and to be demanding $15 million annually for arena maintenance borders on the unconscionable.

That’s how simple it is.

In fact, for professional sports clubs to be asking for public handouts in the first place is unconscionable.

A bit of theory. Economy is divided into three basic spheres. They are described as core, public purpose, and business spheres. Some classify them as household, government, and business spheres. Names may differ, but other than that, it’s the same thing.

In economic theory, business sphere is strictly separated from the other two spheres. Government can (or may) use policies of economic stimuli to attract or keep an industry (a business, that is), but this just happens to be one of the must muddied areas of economics. Suffice it to say that pure economic theory frowns upon such relationships.

End of the bit of theory.

To be blunt: professional sports clubs do not create anything productive. Enthusiasm about a wicked wrist shot in hockey, or a curved (Beckham-like) shot in football (soccer, that is), or a new kind of kicking in free-style swimming, may (or may not) improve an individual’s mood. But that’s about it.

To limit an individual’s emotional well-being to watching extraordinary feats achieved by professional athletes is a dumbing-down proposition.

That’s one point of view.

To limit access to basic services that a government is supposed to provide just because said government is out of money as it had spent it on helping a professional sports club borders on the criminal.

To stay with Glendale, Arizona: what is more important to its citizens, a new firetruck, a new library, or an old and repeatedly failing hockey club? According to a recent public opinion poll, almost two thirds of Glendale’s citizens prefer the former to the latter.

Enough said?

Not according to the owners of the Coyotes, a hockey club that’s been losing money left, right and centre since the moment it landed in Phoenix in 1996. Please remember: it came to Phoenix from Winnipeg, a hockey-crazy community that had not been able to sustain it. And it came from Winnipeg to Phoenix, the place where they like their ice at the bottom of their glasses (filled with fire water, mostly), and where most of the locals can hardly care less about the fastest team game in the world.

Why Phoenix in the first place?

The strategic intent was easy to grasp: let’s have NHL hockey spread all over the Excited States. That’s the only way to get a national broadcasting contract and, thus, exposure. Alas, it seems (in hindsight) that Phoenix and environs have been doomed right from the start.

Not only that: blessed with one suspect owner after another, it seems NHL poohbahs would do well to look up in their dictionaries the real meaning of the expression: due diligence.

But the main point is simple: professional sports clubs should not be allowed to even approach governments, hats in hands, asking for taxpayer-subsidized handouts. If there is one industry where this should be forbidden by law, it’s the professional sports industry. (That, by the way, includes the Olympic Games and sundry international events, too.)

The rule should be: if you have the wherewithal to start a professional sports club, you would be logically expected to have enough money to pay for the re-zoning and building permits, for the construction itself, and for the running of the club, too. If one of these pre-conditions is not met, no permits would be forthcoming, and no taxpayer-funded subsidies, either.

And the word to such owners and leagues should be simple: no, you are NOT entitled to anything.

A minor legalistic observation: the Coyotes intend to claim that former city attorney Craig Tindall had nothing to do whatsoever with the contract between Glendale and the hockey club. That, they said they planned to say, makes the hole the city used to call the deal off null and void. They’ll have to convince a number of judges that they have a valid point. For the city, it would suffice to show that the text of the deal passed once (just once!) through said Mr. Tindall’s hands, even if it was for proof-reading purposes only.

Of course, it would be grasping at straws on the Coyotes’ part. And it would be missing two basic points.

First: the locals don’t want you. Stop behaving like a jilted lover who keeps telling her or his departing partner but you can’t leave me! Why not? Because I love you!

Instead, leave while the leaving is (still) good.

And the second point, even more important: grow up and realize that you are not entitled to anything from the public. Grow up and realize that public money and private business just do not mix. Remember that, eventually, if you persist in your attempts to blackmail the public, it may come back to haunt you.

And then, where will you be?