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Drug War Obtuseness

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Sometimes I wonder how super-smart people can be so obtuse when it comes to the drug war. A recent example of this phenomenon is Ioan Grillo, a contributing editor for the New York Times. Grillo is the author of two books on the drug war: El Narco: Inside Mexico’s Criminal Insurgency, which was translated into five languages and was a Los Angeles Times Book Prize finalist, and his new book Gangster Warlords.

Clearly, Ioan Grillo is a super-smart person.

The problem is that he, like so many other super-smart people in the mainstream press, is also super-obtuse when it comes to the war on drugs.

Grillo thinks he has found a way to win the war on drugs. In an op-ed entitled “Dismantling Mexico’s Narco State,” he says that the secret is for the Mexican and US governments to start targeting for criminal prosecution Mexican government officials who protect the drug cartels. The corruption within the Mexican government would then be ended, which would mean an end to the official protection for the drug cartels and drug lords, which would enable law enforcement to finally — finally — shut them down. Victory in the drug war!

Why, that’s ingenious! Why didn’t anyone come up with this brilliant idea before now?

Maybe because it is so ludicrous.
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Blago Is Free

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On Tuesday, February 18, President Trump with excellent judgment commuted the 14 year prison sentence of former Illinois Governor Rod Blagojevich, aka “Blago.”
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Hillary's War: Nine Years Later Libya Still A Living Hell

Nine years after a US-led attack on Libya and murder of its leader, the democracy and liberation promised by Hillary Clinton and her band of "humanitarian interventionists" has never arrived. Instead, the once-wealthiest African country is mired in civil war and the standard of living has plummeted. There are several warring factions and militias vying for control, none of which seems strong enough to rule the country. This is a valuable cautionary tale about the disasters of US interventionism - which is precisely why no one wants to talk about it. Watch today's Liberty Report...
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Will Censorship Prevail over the First Amendment?

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I remember when censorship in America was a limited phemonenon. It applied during war time—“loose lips sink ships.” It applied to pornography. It applied to curse words on the public airwaves and in movies. It applied to violence in movies. There could be violence, but not the level that has become common.

Today censorship is ubiquitous. It is everywhere. In the United States censorship is both imposed from above and flows from the bottom up. Censorship is imposed from above by, for example, TV and print media, Google, Facebook, Twitter, and by laws in 28 states prohibiting criticism and participation in boycotts of Israel and by President Trump’s executive order preventing federal funding of educational institutions that permit criticisms of Israel. Censorship flows from the bottom up by, for example, people of protected races, genders, and sexual preference claiming to be offended. 

The ubiquitous censorship that today is characteristic of the United States has shut down comedians. It has shut down criticism of non-whites, homosexuals, transgendered, feminists, and Israel. Official explanations are shielded by labeling skeptics “conspiracy theorists.” The ubiquitous censorship in the United States is an extraordinary development as the US Constitution guarantees freedom of expression and a free press.
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18 Year Afghan War Coming To An End? Don't Hold Your Breath!

The US and Taliban have reportedly arrived at a deal to begin drawing US troops down from the current 13,000 to 8,600 and then...well no one knows. The initial reduction of hostilities will begin on 22 February and if successful the drawdown will follow. Already neocons in Washington are warning Trump not to be "too hasty" about ending the 18 year war. Will the US finally come home from Afghanistan? Don't count on it! Tune in to today's Liberty Report...
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Trump Is Right: The US Does Indeed Need a Space Force

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Right now, America has only a pathetic five divisions of the military: Army, Navy, Air Force, Marines and Coast Guard. We desperately need a sixth. And what could be more fitting for our President than fulfilling this need with a brand new spanking Space Force. Thank goodness Mr. Trump has now called this new initiative into being.

The case for the Space Force is overwhelming. Consider the following.

The Martians may attack at any moment. Do we have to wait for an actual invasion of the creatures from the fourth planet to protect ourselves? No. The threat thereof is imminent. If we wait, it might be too late. Do you want your kids to have to speak Martian? Thought not.

Then there is the fact that we simply do not have enough wars on the surface of the planet. The US is engaged, currently, only in some half dozen such conflagrations. We need more! How better to promote this than with a Space Force?
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The Death Of Free Speech: Zuckerberg Asks Governments For Instructions On 'What Discourse Should Be Allowed'

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I have written for years on the effort of European countries to expand their crackdown on free speech globally through restrictions on social media and Internet speech. It appears that Facebook chief executive Mark Zuckerberg has relented in what may prove the death knell for free speech in the West. Zuckerberg seems to relent in asking governments for regulations stipulating what speech will be permitted on Facebook and other platforms. It is the ultimate victory of FranceGermany, and England in their continuing attack on free expression though hate speech laws and speech regulation.

Zuckerberg told an assembly of Western leaders Saturday at the Munich Security Conference that “There should be more guidance and regulation from the states on basically — take political advertising as an example — what discourse should be allowed?” He did add: “Or, on the balance of free expression and some things that people call harmful expression, where do you draw the line?” The problem is that his comments were received as accepting that government will now dictate the range of free speech. What is missing is the bright line rule long maintained by the free speech community.

As tragically demonstrated in France, Germany, and the United Kingdom, speech regulations inevitably expand with time. The desire to silence one’s critics becomes insatiable for both governments and individuals.
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The Koch-Soros Foreign Policy Project: 'Restraint' Or Deception?

The big news last year was that billionaire oligarchs Charles Koch and George Soros were "burying the hatchet" and teaming up to fund a new US foreign policy based on restraint rather than "endless wars." From that cooperation came the Quincy Institute for Responsible Statecraft, as well as additional funding for other organizations working on "restraint." Is this a game-changer or is it an attempt to re-brand old ideas and discredited individuals and institutions? Watch today's Liberty Report...
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