Category Archives: Entertainment and culture

A bee in their bonnet

Today’s mainstream media (MSM) and main social media networks have become behemoths that behave like they are expected to in a china store.

With one proviso: behemoths are thick-skinned, and today’s mainstream media and main social media networks aren’t.

There’s as much to cry about in today’s world as there is much to laugh about. News media provide us with material to cause us to shed bitter tears galore. Satirical sites have been springing up throughout to give us at least some sense of balance.

Two best known in the English-speaking world: The Onion and The Babylon Bee.

The former is generally described as left-leaning, the latter the opposite, right-leaning, that is.

Of course, these characterisations have been obsolete since a few hours after they had been adopted centuries ago in France, but that’s another issue for another day.

Suffice it to say that this is how many of their readers view the two sites.

The most unfortunate thing happens to be that this is also how the MSM and the major social media networks view them, too.

The strangest part is that, while The Onion gets away with character assassination after character assassination, The Babylon Bee doesn’t.

The Onion gets away even with its persistent misspelling of its editor’s name. Trying to be funny, s/he signs her/his name as Zweibel. The proper German spelling: Zwiebel. But let’s assume that even the misspelling has been committed in a (futile) attempt to look funny.

Fake fact-checking

The Grey Old Lady, the paper that claims that it publishes all the news that’s fit to print, a.k.a. the New York Times, has seen fit to start fact-checking items that The Babylon Bee saw fit to publish. The funniest part, if it wasn’t so tragic, was that The Babylon Bee’s motto, repeated time after time after time says that the site is the best ever source of fake news you can find anywhere.

So, was the Grey Lady’s fact-checking supposed to be satirical, too, or was it yet another make-work project for people who wouldn’t know journalism if it hit them between the eyes?

The Babylon Bee went after the Grey Lady with a very proper vengeance, and the Queen of political correctness, as well as Mistress of cancel and woke cultures, had to retract and apologise.

Snopes, years ago a relatively reliable fact-checker that had turned into a laughable attempt at investigative journalism, tried to fact-check the openly-admitted fake news that had appeared on The Babylon Bee, with gales of laughter rising around it.

Now, Seth Dillon, CEO of The Babylon Bee, has come up with another interesting piece of news, and no, this time, it’s not fake: Facebook will be moderating satire.

The idea is to make sure that no satire “punches down,” whatever THAT is supposed to mean.

The victims that deserve protection will be decided upon by Facebook and its bunch of illiterate half-wits who pose as their fact-checkers.

Take aim at anything that Facebook deems deserves protection, and it won’t qualify as what Facebook describes as “true satire.”

Jokes that “punch down” are simply hatred disguised as satire. In Facebook’s own words: “Indeed, humour can be an effective mode of communicating hateful ideas.”

Of course, who cares about Aristotle, the ancient Greek philosopher and author, considered by many the father of satire (and comedy itself)?

The village idiots at 1 Hacker Way in Menlo Park, California, know better.

CEO Dillon thinks it’s not a coincidence that the openly left-leaning Slate magazine published a piece accusing The Babylon Bee of having a “nasty tendency to punch down.” This prime example of hate speech appeared on Slate mere days after Facebook had made its historical announcements that it is now arbiter elegantiarum in all matters funny.

A familiar pattern

When the Marxists and their ilk failed with their attempts to push through their antagonistic contradictions theories based on class status, they switched, with incredible flexibility, to antagonistic contradictions theories based on race.

The Babylon Bee beat them to the punch by declaring openly it’s all about fake news and nothing but. The MSM and the Big Tech social media guys have been looking for other ways to get rid of this annoying site that has found ways how to irk them by making fun of them.

Hatred has become their newest battle cry, le mot du jour.

They use a relatively new method, described by a relatively new word: deplatform.

Whether it’ll work against The Babylon Bee (or anyone else, for that matter) remains to be seen.

As CEO Dillon puts it, his site is punching back, and if there’s any vertical dimension, it’s punching up, against a very mighty group of very mighty and influential people.

He has a very recent example to prove his case.

The Babylon Bee used the Mailchimp e-mail provider to distribute its newsletters.

Mailchimp had the gall to suspend the site’s e-mail service recently. As CEO Dillon describes it, Mailchimp cited “harmful information” as the reason for the suspension, but they would admit that it was a mistake and quickly reinstate the account.

Well, that provider has just lost a source of income.

Mailchimp has been exercising viewpoint discrimination under the guise of protecting the public from harmful misinformation, CEO Dillon said, adding that his company have no interest in staying on a platform that’s looking for excuses to censor its users by literally scanning the content of their e-mails.

That they reversed their decision matters little: it can happen again. So, The Babylon Bee has found another provider. To hell with Mailchimp.

Deplatforming, you see, can go both ways.

And if it hits the censors where it hurts the most, in their wallet, that is, so much the better.

Red-baiting? No, realism

As spoilt a brat as ever broke bread.

Imagine, if you will, a youngish looking female, appearing on one of the many social media video networks to announce to all and sundry who had tuned in that she has just left her job as a first officer on a Boeing-747 Jumbo Jet.

Her announcement has a history: only a few months earlier, she appeared on that same network, to tell all who wished to watch and listen that she had just passed her final tests that would make her a first officer on a Boeing-747 Jumbo Jet.

She used to fly smaller aircraft for regional airlines, but, she said, she had always wanted to make it to the bigs.

You can hardly make it bigger these days.

The ambitious European Airbus-380, though bigger than its Boeing counterpart, was conceived on the ill-conceived and somewhat ill-concealed ambition to show the bloody Yanks that others can build huge planes, too. Except: the Boeing people looked further ahead. They realised that the era of huge passenger planes criss-crossing the world would end one day soon. They designed their Queens of the Sky to make them relatively easy to convert into cargo versions. The idea never crossed the Airbus crowd’s minds. They are now stuck with orders rejected by former customers, tearfully curtailing the entire project. Meanwhile, Jumbo has been experiencing a revival.

Still, to get into a Jumbo flying crew course, and pass it, and get a first officer’s stripes, none of it is a piece of cake.

List of headaches

What happened for the new 747 first officer to call it quits?

Inconvenience.

First of all, she blamed the schedule.

Crews on cargo aircraft don’t fly to a destination on the other side of the globe, enjoy a day or two of a layover, and fly back home, to another well-deserved rest. They bring a plane full of stuff to a city, hand the machine over to a crew that had brought a previous company machine in and now were waiting to fly onwards wherever the cargo manifest tells them.

The crew that had brought the plane into town heads for its designated (and usually quite luxurious) hotel, to spend a day or two. They can use the time any way they wish. Enjoying the sights, checking out the local entertainment venues, watching how the other half live, whatever.

When the time comes, they are driven back to the airport where they take over another plane that had just landed. While the loadmasters are busy filling the cargo hold with new goods, they read the cargo manifest to see where the heck they are landing next, put together a flight plan, and off they go.

Basically, they are away from home about 20 days a month on average, and if the 20-day monthly period happens to extend through the last day of one month and the first day of the next one, the days away from home can add up.

The former first officer didn’t like it either that she had to take her rest on a flight sleeping in a bunk.

A simple explanation: most of the flights take longer than the time permitted for pilots to be in the cockpit. That’s why companies assign more pilots than two (captain and first officer) to each trip. They take turns resting, and airliners have been built with bunks to accommodate them. Not good enough for the former B-747 first officer.

How she could not notice that this was the arrangement while taking her training sessions remains a sweet mystery.

The cargo aircraft flight crews are paid handsomely for their sacrifices.

They include most of the flying happening over nights, too: airports they frequent are busy 24 hours a day, and the idea is for the huge cargo birds not to crowd the taxi ways and runways during the peaks of passenger traffic. It is expected that the cargo crews are aware in advance that this is the flying routine.

In the case of the young lady, the expectation is even more obvious: she used to fly for an airline, after all, she must have seen the cargo crews now and then.

That’s why her statement announcing her abrupt departure from the dream job was so surprising: too long away from home, missing her family, and so on.

Now, missing one’s family, this is a serious matter. But when you hear that she has two dogs in mind, that is, not children, but dogs, the picture darkens somewhat.

Shocking? Not really

And here comes the most important and crucial question of them all: just how, for crying out loud, could it happen that a person could be as short-sighted (a polite substitute for another word) that she does not know what job she is getting into, and that her values put dogs before children?

The answer is as simple as it is NOT shocking: this is a result of decades-long developments in education, of changes in values, of deteriorating morality, of the me-first values that embrace it all.

China’s Great Helmsman, Mao Zedong himself, said famously almost three quarters of a century ago that he sees no need to fight the west, America in particular. These societies, he explained, are so decadent they will fall into his country system’s lap like over-ripened fruit.

His Soviet foe, Nikita Khrushchev, had been thinking along the same lines. Yes, his sentence that communists will bury America was the one that made the headlines, but it was what he had said earlier that mattered: America will wake up one day and see it has become communist. And he explained the same thing Mao Zedong had said, except in a language much less colourful.

The two mightiest communist leaders of the time three quarters of the century ago saw all of what we’re witnessing today. Those who would at the time try to explain all this to western politicians and western public, and those in America especially, would be called anti-Commie red-baiters and conspiracy theorists (the system repeats itself: raise doubts about the current pandemic hoax, and you will get called the same names).

Did it really have to end up like this?

History hasn’t much time for ifs and buts, but still: if, about three decades ago, parents threw out school boards that were trying to censor such classics like Mark Twain’s Tom Sawyer and Huckleberry Finn books, the picture of today could have been much different. Yes, the teachers would have had to learn how to explain that offensive words are but words, and that it is the action that is important.

Of course, to be able to do that, they would have had to learn proper teaching methods, including the subjects they were about to teach, rather than critical theories about pedagogy.

Human brain? How perfectly old-fashioned!

The gullibility of western (North American in particular) populations was (and remains till this day) spectacular. It said so on TV, in the newspaper, on the radio, therefore it’s the Gospel truth.

All of that instead using their critical faculties.

Unfortunately, the sharp thinking that could have been expected of civilised societies has been dulled by shameless consumerism: this phone is way too old (say, six months), and I see that there’s a brand new one on the market, will they accept my old one for a trade-in, or will I have to buy the new one outright?

That’s whence the former Boeing-747 first officer is coming.

Not to worry, she told her social media audience, she has another job lined up: flying helicopters commercially.

Of course, if she works for a company that provides fast transportation for corporate clients, her time won’t belong to her. Again. If a client needs or wants to be flown somewhere, she will have to be ready to fly even if her beloved dogs had been thinking of an outing in a nearby park.

If it happens more than once, she will again announce she’s quitting.

And she will be living with the acquired certainty that this world embraces quitters.

Today’s society may. The world doesn’t.

She is as spoilt a brat as ever broke bread. Unfortunately, the problem we’re facing is that she’s not an exception. She’s the rule.

Facebook on a rampage

You have to give it to Facebook: they are censoring posts left and right, and literally so.

Their latest victim: Russian TV’s (RT) Redfish. RT’s Berlin-based digital content project suffered the ignominy of Facebook killing their posts devoted to remembering the Nazi Holocaust and the defeat of fascism in Italy.

The project, Facebook said, violated its community standards. And, as a result, more than 830,000 followers ended up looking at the typical page, featuring a hand and words saying the page is no longer available.

Yes, some of the pictures were not for the squeamish: Italy’s Duce Benito Mussolini hanging upside down was executed on April 28, 1945 by Italian (very left-wing) partisans and hung down in that position for all to see.

The Redfish post that caused Facebook consternation was published on April 28, 2021, to commemorate the event.

On whose orders?

Facebook seems to be increasingly sensitive about facts. It removed archival photographs showing survivors of the Auschwitz death camp. Redfish published that content on Holocaust Memorial Day. The United Nations Organisation (UNO) designated January 27 — the anniversary of the liberation of the Auschwitz-Birkenau death camps – to remember the Nazi atrocities.

That’s when Redfish published its post, and that’s when Facebook removed it.

Why? Photos of death camp survivors violated Facebook’s rules on “nudity and sexual activity.”

There’s no sexual activity to be seen anywhere in those photos but yes, the survivors are really not dressed in three-piece suits. They are almost naked. One can feel from the pictures that they are shaking: famished, skeleton-like, and in January which just happens to be one of the coldest months on Northern Hemisphere.

Facebook has been claiming in all of its censorship attempts that its activities can’t be judged under the First Amendment of the U.S. Constitution.

Here’s what the First Amendment says (verbatim): Congress shall make no law respecting an establishment of religion, or prohibiting the free exercise thereof; or abridging the freedom of speech, or of the press; or the right of the people peaceably to assemble, and to petition the Government for a redress of grievances.

So, it would seem that Facebook has a point.

Except, in a typical Facebook way of life (and American way of life, too), it has been pasting a warning label on everything linked to RT, however slightly. The warning label states, again, verbatim, that the company is funded in whole or in part by the Russian government.

Indeed, it seems that it is. But: so what? The truth is the truth no matter who utters it.

Yes, the Americans (and people elsewhere, following their example) have been telling all and sundry that coffee may be hot, or that shooting a gun may endanger somebody’s life, including yours.

But, RT says, and it has a pretty valid point here, if you follow Facebook’s decisions, they pretty closely resemble decisions made by U.S. government. It looks almost as if the so-called Big-Tech crowd were part of U.S. official propaganda.

RT uses another example: when they tried to post a colourised version of Soviet soldiers hoisting their country’s flag over the Reichstag (Nazi Germany’s parliament) in Berlin, Facebook removed it saying it broke its rules on depicting dangerous individuals and organizations.

This incident happened in May 2020, as most of the world were celebrating the 75th anniversary of the defeat of Nazism.

Facing this inexcusable blunder, Facebook claimed a glitch in its algorithm was the cause.

Whoever believes this statement must also believe in the tooth fairy and trust the claim that the Earth is round.

Strange links

Uncomfortably many facts stand in the way. To explain itself, Facebook would have to clarify, for example, its close partnership with the Atlantic Council. This august body is part of North Atlantic Treaty Organisation (NATO) effort to (their own words) identify “emerging threats and disinformation campaigns from around the world.”

To achieve this goal, the Atlantic Council obtained the services of one Ben Nimmo. This person is a self-described troll-hunter. Unfortunately, thus far, his findings have all had one major mistake: they were not supported by evidence.

While Russia definitely is NOT a shining example of pure democracy and law-abiding government, the German Commerzbank has yet to explain why it chose to close down RT’s video agency Ruptly and RT DE Productions GmbH’s accounts.

Just to make sure they would not be able to deny their actions were co-ordinated with Facebook’s, YouTube restricted RT’s ability to launch live broadcasts for seven days.

The explanation would have been hilarious if it wasn’t tragic: older videos, uploaded a long time ago, featuring an interview with a virologist and broadcasts from rallies against Covid-19 restrictions. According to YouTube, they violated its policies on medical misinformation” and “spam, deceptive practices and scams.

And here’s the craziest part: RT’s Redfish is now crying bitter tears. It describes itself as a left-wing (or left-leaning, at least) outlet, and now, it says, it is a victim of a right-wing conspiracy.

Not really true. The truth is much simpler: the so-called Big Tech are not only denying their users’ right of free expression. They are censoring the truth no matter whence it comes.

Where’s the anti-trust legislation when we need it?

New fad? Same old Marxism again

A leftist crowd of lazy bums has hijacked modern mainstream journalism decades ago. Pretending to be busy beavers, they’re coming up with all kinds of innovations, in an attempt to make their failed efforts more palatable.

The latest fad, dreaming in the background since the latter years of the 19th century: movement journalism.

That’s what they teach naïve kids at the Missouri School of Journalism, with enthusiastic help of the David W. Reynolds Journalism Institute. These institutions share space and ideology at 120 Neff Hall in Columbia. Their two other teammates include: Jonathan B. Murray Center for Documentary Journalism and David Novak Leadership Institute.

A minor aside: all journalism should be documented. Why create a new outfit to teach it?

Beg your pardon?

A whatnot (journalist he definitely isn’t) named Gabe Schneider spread himself quite extensively, to the tune of over 1,600 words, to explain the strange phenomenon of movement journalism.

His point of departure: Ida B. Wells and her reporting for the Memphis Free Speech in 1892 on lynchings across U.S. South.

It couldn’t be easy. The times were what they were. Lynchings, this cruel display of outright racism, as performed by the Ku-Klux-Klan, with eager support and encouragement provided by the U.S. Democratic Party, isn’t anything the U.S. should put proudly on display and not be ashamed of.

None of this justifies the nonsense called Project South, an innovative idea young Gabe Schneider goes ga-ga about.

The Project published a document in 2017, telling the world that a lady named Anna Simonton was speaking for it, and explaining what it is all about.

Herewith a verbatim quote from the opening of the 62 pages worth of drivel: “Project South is a movement building organization founded in 1986 to strengthen community organizing, develop accessible political education, and build people-centered infrastructure in the U.S. South. Based in Atlanta, Project South cultivates productive space for social movement leaders, organizations, and collaborations to build people power from the bottom up. Our work is informed by historical legacy and root cause analysis of our social and economic conditions. Project South recognizes the powerful role of media and communication in educating and activating our communities to work for racial, economic, and social justice and remains committed to developing movement-driven communications infrastructure in the region. Anna Simonton is the Movement Communications Fellow at Project South. She has worked as a journalist for eight years, from co-founding an alternative student newspaper at The Evergreen State College, to interning at The Nation magazine, to establishing a career as an independent researcher and reporter. She currently serves on the editorial board of Scalawag, a magazine of Southern politics and culture that has received wide acclaim.”

A few facts

Let’s open with Ms. Simonton’s Alma Mater, the Evergreen State College. It is a self-described “public liberal arts and sciences college in Olympia, Washington. Founded in 1967, it offers a non-traditional undergraduate curriculum in which students have the option to design their own study towards a degree or follow a pre-determined path of study.”

Ms. Simonton’ first employer, The Nation, describes itself as the oldest continuously published weekly magazine in the United States, covering progressive political and cultural news, opinion, and analysis.

Did you notice the word: “progressive”?

The Nation took over from William Lloyd Garrison’s The Liberator, an abolitionist newspaper. The Liberator closed its doors in 1865, after ratification of the Thirteenth Amendment to the United States Constitution.

That particular amendment abolished slavery and involuntary servitude, except as punishment for a crime. Congress passed it on January 31, 1865, and the required 27 of the then-36 states ratified it on December 6, 1865. It was solemnly proclaimed on December 18 of that same year.

Project South appeared 152 years after that not-insignificant event. Is that progress or what?

And just to touch upon the Scalawag: the Encyclopedia Britannica defines it thus: Scalawag, after the American Civil War, a pejorative term for a white Southerner who supported the federal plan of Reconstruction or who joined with black freedmen and the so-called carpetbaggers in support of Republican Party policies.

Classic roots

So, now that we have the basics together, what is this “movement journalism” all about?

It is another expression of Marxism. The classic class-based “antagonistic contradiction” wasn’t working. Why not come up with race-based, and gender-based “antagonistic contradictions” then?

The history is about a century old.

It started with a group that would become known as the Frankfurt School (Frankfurter Schule). It was a school of social theory and critical philosophy, part of the Institute for Social Research (German: Institut für Sozialforschung), at Goethe University in Frankfurt. Founded in Germany’s Weimar Republic, during the European interwar period, the Frankfurt School brought together far-left intellectuals, academics and political dissidents who saw Germany and the rest of the world crumbling. They were convinced that the only way to fix matters would be to establish communism everywhere.

In this sense they were closer to Leon Trotsky and his call for permanent revolution happening worldwide than to Josif Stalin. The Soviet dictator felt Trotsky was becoming too popular among Western salon-communists, as these people would be described with a certain degree of derision. So, he had him killed.

Meanwhile, Adolf Hitler and his National Socialists, who had similar objectives to those Frankfurt School had been dreaming of, saw in them not only dangerous competition, but also a gang of Jewish egg-heads.

He didn’t round them up. He simply let them leave.

And the Americans would accept them.

It would take years before the Frankfurt School Marxists managed to take America’s education system over, but once they did, they went to work with gusto. One critical theory would follow another, starting with teaching education, moving on to culture (entertainment, as it is known in North America).

These Marxists figured out America’s soft spot: don’t bore us with economics, give us song and dance.

This seems to be the extent of Gabe Schneider’s education, too.

Nobody told him yet that democracy with an adjective is not democracy, freedom with an adjective is not freedom, and journalism with an adjective is not journalism.

So he prattles merrily, blissfully unaware, to stay just with journalism, that this trade is about reporting, and that to do it right is a 24-hour job seven days a week, 365 days a year (and 366 in a leap year).

And the worst part is that way too many take him seriously. They don’t know any better, unfortunately: that’s how and what they’ve been taught in the most progressive schools in the world.

European Union tackles Artificial Intelligence. Does it?

The Communist Party of China will not be pleased: the European Union leaders think of banning using artificial intelligence (AI) for mass surveillance and social credit scores.

According to leaked news, the EU is considering many other AI uses to forbid, but these two are the most important.

The People’s Republic of China has been boasting that its law enforcement can find anybody anywhere anytime. They are able to do it within just a few minutes. Their AI equipment is as advanced as anybody’s, they explain.

It must come as a frightful surprise, shock, even, to the ruling Beijing mandarins that the EU, an organisation known as hopelessly leftist (and that’s putting it tactfully, beyond discreetly) would question their policy of Orwellian Big-Brotherism, and that it would do it so unscrupulously.

What is it?

Artificial Intelligence is whatever anyone decides to define it as.

When Czech writer Karel Čapek wrote his play named R.U.R. (Rossum’s Universal Robots) in 1920, he could have hardly expected that the word “robot” would become an integral part of so many languages (and that only very few writers who would be using it, would know its origin, Isaac Asimov being one of them).

Basically, robots employed by a Mr. Rossum would decide they had enough of doing what they are ordered to do, and they would start an uprising.

The word “robot” itself is an expression slightly changed from the original Czech word “robota,” meaning statute labour in the times of serfdom.

Interestingly, and those who haven’t learnt their Czech yet ought to be ashamed, the name of the robots’ owner itself is dripping with sarcastic irony: the word “rozum” equals reason in English, as in ability to think.

So, creating robots that do their masters’ thinking artificially, told only what the objective would be, has been as shortsighted as anything can get, with one exception: it helps those who would like to control the masses of population.

A video used to circulate on the world’s social media a few years ago. A People’s Republic of China official posted it. It showed a person, an alleged dissident, who got a call from another dissident, to meet at a pre-arranged (and thus, unnamed in the phone conversation) spot. The call was intercepted, of course, and using face recognition devices, the authorities had that dissident on their screens within seconds, cameras relaying his movement from one block to another, until the spot where he met the other guy, and before they could express any dissent, they were both arrested.

Ingenious, no?

Split personalities.

The European Union, on one hand, does everything possible to control each and every citizen of each and every of its member countries.

On the other hand, it introduced something known as General Data Protection Regulation (GDPR for short), a set of rules to protect everybody’s privacy. It has been in force since May 25, 2018, and even the transnational worldwide companies, such as Google, Twitter or Facebook, must comply to be allowed to operate anywhere within the EU territory.

Many, if not most, of today’s EU leaders claim Maoist past. And, as well, many, if not most, of today’s EU leaders are on board with Klaus Martin Schwab’s (of the World Economic Forum infamy) Great Reset, a.k.a. fourth industrial revolution.

They seem somewhat unsure when the Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation’s genocidal plans top the agenda: they are all agog about the Gates climate change claim. In light of the latest developments, they are not altogether certain about vaccination. And the eugenics ideas promoted by the Gates duo, while sounding attractive to many of the EU poohbahs, still leaves them shaking in their boots: memories of Adolf Hitler still hit too close to home.

They are not so sure, either, about George Soros and his Open Societies that clamour for a one-world government, controlled formally by the United Nations Organisation, but subordinated to persons and groups unknown. Where would this arrangement leave them, with all those benefits and perks they’ve been enjoying at taxpayers’ expense?

Again, here enters the one hand, and the other: they all of a sudden find themselves defending Europeans’ privacy, and ditching extraordinary tools of controlling the masses, including Artificial Intelligence.

Against the grain?

Depends on whom you ask. The EU sees the solution in telling member states to set up something they call assessment boards to decide which of the AI applications are kosher and which aren’t.

Anew: on the one hand, shocking, as the Brussels EU head office will share power with individual countries, something it hasn’t done in decades. On the other hand, while many countries will decide to curb the use of AI not only to snitch on its own citizens (jó napot kívánok, Orbán Viktor úr, and dzień dobry, panie Morawiecki) but altogether, many others (Grüßgott, Frau Merkel, Bon Jour, Monsieur Macron, and dobrý den, pane Babiši) will be much more lenient.

After all, they can use not only China, but a number of North American jurisdictions for their examples, too.

Many municipalities in Canada quite openly install all kinds of closed-circuit television systems on their ways and byways, telling citizens who dare ask that they’re doing it in their own interest, so nobody can rob them and go unpunished, and rot like that.

In any case, those who develop or dare sell AI software that is on the banned list in the EU could face fines up to four per cent of what they make globally. And that includes those who are based elsewhere in the world.

No wonder then that the U.S. high-tech giants have been doing all they can to get rid of pesky local governments, and, in their warped view that is based on ignorance and sheer illiteracy, European Union is one of those.

Herewith the rules:

While, it seems, the list below is not really complete, it is impressive as it is, anyhow.

  1. A ban on AI for “indiscriminate surveillance,” including systems that directly track individuals in physical environments or aggregate data from other sources.
  2. A ban on AI systems that create social credit scores, which means judging someone’s trustworthiness based on social behaviour or predicted personality traits.
  3. Special authorization for using “remote biometric identification systems” like facial recognition in public spaces.
  4. Notifications required when people are interacting with an AI system, unless this is “obvious from the circumstances and the context of use”.
  5. New oversight for “high-risk” AI systems, including those that pose a direct threat to safety, like self-driving cars, and those that have a high chance of affecting someone’s livelihood, like those used for job hiring, judiciary decisions, and credit scoring.
  6. Assessment for high-risk systems before they’re put into service, including making sure these systems are explicable to human overseers and that they’re trained on “high quality” datasets tested for bias.
  7. The creation of a “European Artificial Intelligence Board,” consisting of representatives from every nation-state, to help the commission decide which AI systems count as “high-risk” and to recommend changes to prohibitions.

Pay special attention: the new set of rules bans using AI for mass surveillance and social credit scores.

Great or awful?

While perhaps too vague, it definitely is a start, optimists suggest.

Other experts are shrugging, doubting the whole thing to its roots.

Speaking, for example, about sections that regulate systems that might cause people to “behave, form an opinion or take a decision to their detriment,” they say these rules are too vague.

Besides, the devil’s in the detail, and that’s where reading the full text of the proposal becomes tedious, tiring and exceedingly boring.

How, more than a few experts ask, can a government decide whether a decision that had been influenced by AI was to someone’s detriment or not?

And: no matter how you slice it, the new proposals reflect perfectly the European Union’s approach to everything: when in doubt, regulate.

To come back full-circle to the question, namely, whether the EU is defying the New World Order proposals or not, here’s the answer: no. It’s just found a different way of getting there.

Racists overwhelm Oxford University

Getting education, any education whatsoever, is a hangover from distant past, several British reformers say. The worst part: the hallowed Oxford academe seems to be in full agreement.

Joseph II, the Emperor of the Austro-Hungarian Empire, was delighted on Tuesday, July 16, 1782. He attended the premiere of Wolfgang Amadeus Mozart’s opera (Singspiel), named Abduction from Seraglio (original title: Die Entführung aus dem Serail). After all, the Emperor did commission it.

But His Majesty had this to remark, much to Mozart’s displeasure bordering on disgust: “That is too fine for my ears – there are too many notes, dear Mozart.” (Scholars steeped in the elegant intricacies of the German language use this form: Zu schön für unsere Ohren, und gewaltig viel Noten, lieber Mozart! That leaves space for different interpretations, but that’s another issue.)

But: today’s educational modernisers would applaud His Majesty with gusto, if only they knew of his existence. Well, perhaps they would stop clapping upon learning that he was a Royal, but let’s leave this question to conjecture.

Writing notation is too white

Lessons on writing notation and how to conduct orchestras stink of colonialism and white supremacy, a few undergraduate students and teachers at the most venerable Oxford University said, and the school seems to be in agreement.

They describe musical notation as a “colonialist representational system.”

Classical repertoire taught at Oxford includes works by Mozart and Ludwig van Beethoven. That, some professors said, focuses too much on what they described as white European music from the slave period.

And they meant it.

There are quite a few problems with this. One of them is facts of history.

The trade in African slaves, not by white men but by Muslim Arabs who had been ruling Africa at the time, had nothing to do with western classical music notation. It is based on medieval liturgical music and Georgian chants.

Yes, Johann Sebastian Bach, Wolfgang Amadeus Mozart and Ludwig van Beethoven emerged in the 17th and 18th centuries. But they had nothing to do with any slave trade.

So, Black Lives Matter, a racist organisation if there ever was one, found another approach: the classical musical notation started at the height of colonialism.

Playing the keyboard or conducting orchestras ended up in the same boat. The reason is tragically idiotic: the repertoire used in the process “structurally centres white European music.” And that, the activists insist, causes “students of colour great distress.”

Throw Mozart and Beethoven out, give us a “decolonized’ curriculum.”

That means musical diversity, whatever that is.

Besides, why not introduce such topics like signature pop culture events, including Dua Lipa’s Record Breaking Livestream” and ”Artists Demanding Trump Stop Using Their Songs” instead?

This is what happens when you give an inch to the fundamentalists.

Oxford University bid a symbolic farewell to what Black Lives Matter and the school in unison described the university’s colonialist past. Gone is the statue of Cecil Rhodes from the Oriel College campus.

Black Lives Matter described the Victorian-era diamond magnate and prime minister of the Cape Colony as the “father of apartheid” in South Africa.

Not to be left behind, Oxford’s All Souls College’s library no longer bears the name of Christopher Codrington, a Barbados-born 17th century colonial governor and slave-owner.

Not that far!

In an unexpected show of courage, the school refused to remove Codrington’s statue. He used to be an All Souls fellow and generous donor. It was his money that helped build the library in the first place.

In another scandal, Black Lives Matter stated, and Oxford faculty agreed, that “vast bulk of tutors for techniques are white men.”

And, while they are at it, the school is looking at a student’s proposal that no tutors should speak disparagingly to students about any element of the curriculum.

Meaning: how dare you criticize? Not only are the tutors banned from criticizing anything students love, they are not allowed to criticize anything other than white privilege.

Including hip hop and jazz on Oxford’s curriculum will provide “non-Eurocentric” topics of study.

In a scary case of self-flagellation, professors started asking whether the “structure of our curriculum supports white supremacy.” There should be a law about this, they suggested, adding another concern: an “almost all-white faculty” gives (how natural) “privilege to white musics.”

Here’s what they want to do: introduce “special topics” such as “Introduction to Sociocultural and Historical Studies.”

Who gives a hoot about Guillaume de Machaut, a French poet and composer of late medieval music, or Franz Peter Schubert, an Austrian composer of the late classical and early romantic eras?

Give us “African and African Diasporic Musics”, “Global Musics”, and “Popular Musics!”

Truth to be told, several faculty members had the gall to beg to differ. One, according to a British Telegraph newspaper story, went so far as to suggest that her/his (not identified) colleagues focussed on music from before 1900 “are often implicitly accused of being concerned exclusively with music that is ‘Western’ and ‘white’.”

No word yet on those particular teachers’ fates.

But if they are allowed to teach yet another hour, it would be a shock.

Race wars will do America in

It doesn’t pay to be poor if you’re white in Oakland, California. The city has announced its low-income families would be getting a what it calls “unconditional” $500 a month for a year and a half. Still, city parents did impose one condition: white families need not apply.

The official announcement is explicit about that: the project is only open to black, indigenous, and people of colour (BIPOC).

Mayor Libby Schaaf said the idea is to fight “systemic” racism.

Oakland authorities used what they describe as the city’s Equity Index. It showed that white households earn more than any other, on average. In comparison to the black community, white earnings are almost three times as much, the officials said.

Nobody checked those figures, and nobody bothered to ask whether this discrepancy can have other causes rather than racism.

Not to be outdone, the city of Evanston, Illinois decided to use community donations and revenue from a three-per-cent tax on recreational marijuana to offer reparations to black residents to compensate for past discrimination.

In numbers: Evanston, a city of about 73,000 people, just north of Chicago, will spend $10 million during the next decade to achieve a murkily defined racial equity. The first $400,000 will go towards helping black residents with housing.

The lone city alderman who voted against the plan, didn’t do so because she didn’t like the idea of reparations. According to Cicely Fleming, the program was too paternalistic. It assumed black people are unable to support themselves financially.

Considering President Joe Biden has no issues with spending billions the country does not have to repair an artificial issue, Evanston must have endeared itself to the old guy.

What the hell is the deal?

Elementary, my dear Watsons. Marxists found out (what took them so long?) that the original idea of so-called antagonistic contradiction based on classes does not work. Yet, the concept was one of the cornerstones of their ideology.

The other cornerstone has been known as the absolute and relative impoverishment of the proletariat. It turned out that it didn’t work, either.

A number of complex reasons for both failures. The main reason, though, was the simplest of them all. Concepts made up in the insupportably peaceful and dull air of the British Museum, where Karl Marx wrote most of his seminal work, Das Kapital, just don’t match what’s going on outside, in the fresh air of reality.

But Marxism is based on hatred. That is its major cornerstone. It can’t proceed without it. Conditio sine qua non, to put it scientifically.

The easiest hatred to replace Marx’s original concepts is based on race.

Races are indisputable. Your skin is either white, or black, or red, or brown, or whatever else. As former pop star Michael Jackson’s attempts to bleach his skin showed, science hadn’t got far enough yet to succeed.

The easiest next step: distort history. Marx got away with it. Why not today’s ideologues?

Except, facts seem to interfere with the ideologues’ new maxims.

Centuries ago, Muslim Arabs in Africa enslaved the original black population in countries they ruled.

Next thing they did, they sold many of them to merchants who would take them all the way across the Big Pond.

In a historically unusually brief time, America would abolish slavery. It would cost her a major war, but end it she did.

Then came the scandal of Liberia, something today’s Marxists prefer to remain silent about.

The American Colonization Society bought the West African area for freed U.S. slaves in 1821. About 10,000 freed slaves used the opportunity to return to their native continent. And, once they did, they declared the locals their slaves.

It would take the locals till 1989 to realize something was wrong, and express their disagreement in a violent manner, thus ending the master-slave arrangement the former new arrivals had imposed on them.

Yes, expressions of racism continued in the U.S. even after slavery had been abolished, but the country’s modern history shows that its society would develop into one that would make racism and segregation dirty words.

But here comes the irony to end all ironies. In the beginning, the struggle against racism was about all races being equal. Now, people from those same circles declare that no, races do differ. And, on top of it all, white skin means that people thus afflicted enjoy what is now known as white privilege.

Perfect nonsense, of course. Just look at the so-called affirmative action that would, starting officially in the early 1960s under the guise of fighting racism, introduce another form of it. Black people would be getting all kinds of advantages in getting into halls of higher learning, without much consideration given to the question whether they qualify academically. That same approach would hold for hiring practices in the federal governments, both in the U.S. and in Canada. And any company doing business with the respective governments had to adhere to these regulations, too.

Some called it reversed racism. Wrong: it is racism, pure and simple.

Great divide

Admitting that there exist different races is tantamount to racism. This denial of basic truth is one part of the idiocy that has been dividing the world.

Claiming that one race is better than all of the other races combined is racism.

But claiming that one race is better off than all of the others just because of its skin colour is yet another sign of moronism.

It is reaching insurmountable levels of outright stupidity.

University graduation ceremonies split into groups by race. White people directing black stories as well as Asian or Latinx) equals systemic whitewashing.

One such example: American HBO network produced a documentary on famous golfer Tiger Woods. Several segments covering Mr. Woods’s personal life bordered on uncomplimentary. The battle cry of the enraged black racists: two men who didn’t know “what it is like to live life in a black man’s skin” directed it.

Shockingly, a number of white-skinned would-be intellectuals formed a self-flagellation chorus. Whether they hope that this would make their homes safe when hordes of thugs start demolishing white neighbourhoods is not known.

History teaches us that revolutions eat their own children with shocking alacrity.

History teaches us, too, that we can’t beat stupidity, but we mustn’t stop trying.

Too white, too male: a deadly sin

The cancel culture and woke idiocy seems to have no bounds: a famed Catalan translator is too white and too male to be allowed to translate a black female poet whose verses were recited at U.S. President Joe Biden’s inauguration.

The reason was, as the translator was informed, that he had a “wrong profile.”

Not only that: a Spanish publisher condoned this fit of moronism.

Barcelona-based publisher Univers said it had been they who had commissioned the translation of Amanda Gorman’s poem The Hill We Climb to Victor Obiols.

As a renowned Shakespearean translator famed also for Catalan versions of Oscar Wilde’s work, Obiols was the best qualified, Univers explained.

But, so far as Viking Books, Amanda Gorman’s U.S. publisher, is concerned this poem needs to be translated by a woman activist, preferably of African American origin.

As the Agence France Presse (AFP) reports, the American publisher did not question Obiols’s abilities. They just announced that they were looking for a different profile, which had to be a woman, young, activist and preferably black.

Univers editor Ester Pujol agreed that the Americans had every right to put any conditions in place. She went one step further, though: she found the demand perfectly acceptable.

Legalistically speaking, certainly, no question about that.

Yes, Obiols will not be able to add this translation to his list of works he helped reach the Catalan readers. But he is going to be paid for the work: he had already finished and submitted it when he was told his participation in such an august event as Biden’s inauguration would be inappropriate.

Now, Univers is looking for someone to replace Obiols. Whether there are many translators into Catalan as good as Obiols remains to be seen. And whether any Catalan translators would be willing to step in remains to be seen, too.

Obiols had this to say about the entire stupefying fiasco: “If I cannot translate a poet because she is a woman, young, black, an American of the 21st century, neither can I translate Homer because I am not a Greek of the eighth century B.C. Or could not have translated Shakespeare because I am not a 16th-century Englishman.”

In several tweets, Obiols described himself as a “victim of a new inquisition.”

He would later delete these posts. Whether he did so because, as he told reporters, he didn’t want them to be misinterpreted, or whether he was tactfully reminded to consider what would be better for him in the future, only he and his publisher know.

Amanda Gorman seems to attract all kinds of creeps.

About a month ago, Dutch poet Marieke Lucas Rijneveld was forced to turn down an assignment to translate Gorman’s The Hill We Climb into Dutch.

A black culture activist Janice Deul insisted that Rijneveld was also too white to translate the poem. The fact that, just last year, Rijneveld became the youngest writer ever to win the prestigious International Booker Prize didn’t matter. And neither did it matter that it was Amanda Gorman herself who selected Rijneveld for the job.

What was this immortal poem all about?

It described the early-January-2021 riot at the Capitol in Washington, D.C., while describing Gorman’s country’s democracy as fragile.

In the poem, Gorman called herself a “skinny black girl, descended from slaves and raised by a single mother.”

And that makes her poetry untouchable by anybody but another skinny black girl.

Scary lawyers or what?

A number of Harvard University Law School students, teachers and some alumni are demanding that this august body of an Ivy League school never again hire or admit anyone whose views coincide with the opinions held or shared by American President Donald J. Trump. And should anyone of such horrible views be found anywhere on campus, they should be fired instantly.

Have they all gone crazy or is it a logical outcome of a series of events that have happened a few decades ago?

The latter answer is correct. And so is the former one.

Affirmative action gave us a former college student who had first successfully posed as a foreigner so long as it meant he would be receiving financial and other benefits. That same affirmative action would get this student into Harvard University Law School. He would become American President a few years later.

His name: Barrack Hussein Obama.

If that wasn’t scary enough then, the aftermath is even scarier.

Affirmative action has been officially defined as a set of policies and practices within a government or organization seeking to increase the representation of particular groups based on their gender, race, sexuality, creed or nationality in areas in which they are underrepresented such as education and employment.

Most frequently, it has meant that people were advancing in their lives and careers because of the colour of their skin.

Some used to call it reverse racism. It’s nothing of the kind. This is pure systemic (and systematic) racism.

The explanation that those poor blacks would have no other chance to get into better schools without affirmative action doesn’t hold water. The examples of brilliant scientists of black skin colour who have made it all the way to the top of academic achievement are way too numerous to mention.

How it started

The ideas of equality have been prevalent in America way longer than today’s activists would be willing to admit. And the concept of affirmative action has existed in America since the 19th century. It would take then-President John F. Kennedy’s Executive Order 10925 to formalize it in 1961. Later, such orders developed the system of implementation, expanding it into the sphere of education, as well.

As the policies progressed, some people would object, saying that even if those groups selected for preferential treatment had been treated shabbily earlier, there can be no quick fixes. People admitted to institutions of higher learning should know the basics before getting into academic ranks, and it takes time to change elementary education so that the university entrants can learn their chosen sciences thoroughly.

Of course, those who had introduced affirmative action would hear none of that. Those who object were subjected to all kinds of labelling. It would later develop into all sorts of official politically correct policies, and all that combined would culminate, for the time being, at least, in all kinds of cancel culture and wokeness (another illiterate idiocy, this one defined as perceived awareness of issues that concern social and racial justice).

With the lower levels of new entrants’ abilities came a logical consequence: their educational level upon university graduation would often equal (or fall behind) the demands for high school finals. The number of stories of universities forced to teach their students the art of writing simple, basic papers, and never mind such basic grammar as the knowledge of spelling, have been rampant the last few decades.

So, no wonder that these people are not only unable to understand some pretty basic issues of standard science of economics, but they also hate anyone who has the gall not only to know these issues but to implement them, as well.

Since their ability to grasp complex issues is limited beyond any comprehension, the only way they know how to debate those who know more is to label them. They use all kinds of derogatory descriptions, often not even knowing what those words really mean.

And, once they’ve labelled them, comes the action: rid us of them all.

Right? Wrong?

Some call these new inquisitors’ actions a return to McCarthyism.

Well, returning one sort labelling using another sort of labelling doesn’t solve anything.

And, besides, to use McCarthyism as a swear word is perfectly wrong.

Yes, Sen. Joseph McCarthy did attack a number of people within the American establishment. But no, his attacks were not indiscriminate.

The U.S. counter-intelligence managed to get into Soviet espionage communications traffic. The so-called Venona Decrypt used to be a closely-guarded secret, but the names Sen. McCarthy scrutinised did come as result of this breach.

Of course, those who would attack Sen. McCarthy had no idea. And many of their successors still can’t accept that he was right, even after the former Soviet intelligence archives (both KGB and GRU) opened their doors, confirming that Sen. McCarthy’s probes were correct.

Still, such deep (and naïve) thinkers as Ed Murrow of the CBS, and, later on, Walter Cronkite of that same CBS, or Daniel Schorr of the PBS, could and should have known that the Soviet Union was an implacable enemy of all things free and democratic.

We are experiencing the results of their ignorance now. People with academic degrees whose knowledge is sadly lacking, but whose devotion to anti-human ideology is overwhelming. People who got into prestigious schools because of the overwhelming lack of respect for real human values. People who demand respect for themselves and have no respect for others.

Bluntly: people keen on dismantling the system that got them all the privileges they have been enjoying, not realising that all revolutions eat their children, and their turn will come next.

Too sad.

We’re getting too close to the point of no return

While many optimists think the Covid-19 hysteria will be behind us soon, the founder of the World Economic Forum is planning otherwise.

Lockdowns and other similar measures should be here to stay. Governments hope whatever they do will show their employers they’ve been taking good care of them.

Klaus Martin Schwab, the guy whose feudalistic socialism theory has started the entire movement, is on record as saying nothing can beat Covid-19 better than continuing with the drastic measures we have been witnessing since last March.

Governments, advised by medical people on their payroll, have only proven their opportunistic illiteracy. They claim their decisions to lock entire regions and industries down in the hope of stopping the spread of Covid-19-related illnesses are based on sound science. Like parents who aren’t sparing their rod when disciplining their children, the governments say they know what’s good for us, not realising they are doing what’s good for a small group of people hell-bent-for-leather on achieving their anti-human goal of turning the wheels of history where they want them.

How about facts?

Yes, quite a few medical professionals have bought into statements that we are facing a plague combined with caries, with a bit of leprosy thrown in.

But, a deeper dig reveals some shocking information.

The most obvious one: claiming they are treating an increasing number of Covid-related conditions brings monetary benefits to those who make those claims. Yes, the medical crowd gets paid bonuses based on a number of Covid-related illnesses they report. It does NOT mean this is the real number. It means this is the number reported to payroll departments, so they can calculate proper bonuses.

Bluntly put: governments have been bribing medical professionals.

Here’s a shocking number: even if we accept all deaths reported as Covid-related, the toll would be 0.028 per cent.

But we can’t accept those statistics. The evidence is no longer anecdotal, appearing here and there: an elderly person, in her/his nineties, passes away from either simple old age, or a condition linked to old age, or any other illness, and the death certificate lists Covid as reason of death even though not a sign had been detected.

Money talks, that’s all: another bonus.

The results are shocking. Young people who see no future because of the lockdown and other limitations, take their lives. Even those who are studying online and seem to be continuing with their education quite satisfactorily, are deeply depressed. The result: North American suicide rates among young people have jumped beyond belief. In the U.S. alone, they are up by 60 per cent.

Yes, some of it can be attributed to the fact today’s young generation, used to get anything and everything at the snap of their fingers, is spoilt by the snowflake culture that bans everything that can upset them, and by the cultures of woke and cancelling everything they deem unacceptably rough.

By the way, while “woke” is now used in political terms all over the world where English is spoken, it isn’t a new word at all. It means a person is aware of issues that concern what that person views as social and racial justice. Its origin comes from what is known as African-American Vernacular English. The original expression meant one was to stay awake. Now it reads woke, and the meaning has moved somewhat to include what its authors say is a continuing awareness of these issues.

In any case, an increase in youth suicides by 60 per cent is a strong signal that those people need help, and they are not getting it. Which is quite fine so far as the Gates Foundation’s goals are concerned: there are too many of us, why not have the weaker ones removes themselves from the genetic pool by their own hands?

Interestingly, not many in the government circles and mainstream media (MSM) have noticed that we have had none of the usual flu seasons. Neither have they noticed that fluctuations in Covid-related infection numbers resemble those recorded during annual flu seasons to the last dot.

And, so far as the decrease in new infections is concerned, why, this has been happening because we’ve been such good girls and boys, obeying our governments a health authorities’ every whim, including snitching on those who didn’t do what they had been ordered to do.

World in ruin

To sum up: our basic human rights are going to hell with all speed, our hospitality industry is in ruins, young people’s extracurricular activities have been curtailed like in an aftermath of a nuclear war, most of the arts and their practitioners are in the poorhouse, and the evidence that the entire scenario has been a hoax has been becoming increasingly convincing with each passing minute.

Lest anyone thinks that thing will get back to normal once the non-existent pandemic is over, here’s a warning: Klaus Martin Schwab of the World Economic Forum infamy still wants his feudalist-socialist vision of a Great Reset (a.k.a. the fourth industrial revolution) to become reality. The Gates Foundation still insists that about 6.5 billion of today’s 7.8 billion people on this Earth must go, and if someone calls their plans genocidal, so be it. And George Soros and his Open Societies are still convinced that what we need is one government ruling all over the world. The United Nations will suffice for the moment, but that august body can be subordinated to the mightiest any time the mightiest wish.

These forces know no other way to achieve their goals than instilling fear, terrorizing people into submission, using methods survivors of socialism know only too well. The damage they have caused to humanity borders on the irreparable. In any case, even if we find ways to get rid of these monsters, it may still take generations before humanity returns to its senses.

And that is the worst crime of all: nobody is going to give us back the time we’ve lost living in fear.