Ron Paul Institute for Peace And Prosperity All Blogs 2018 http://www.ronpaulinstitute.org/archives/peace-and-prosperity/rss.aspx?blogid=5 Fri, 17 Aug 2018 04:00:00 GMT Fri, 17 Aug 2018 06:17:37 GMT John Miska’s Heroic Resistance in Charlottesville, Virginia Adam Dick http://www.ronpaulinstitute.org/archives/peace-and-prosperity/2018/august/15/john-miska-s-heroic-resistance-in-charlottesville-virginia/

Reading Rutherford Institute President John W. Whitehead’s Monday editorial “From Boston to Ferguson to Charlottesville: The Evolution of a Police State Lockdown,” I wanted to find out more about an arrest Whitehead mentions took place over the weekend in his hometown of Charlottesville, Virginia. Following a link in Whitehead’s editorial to a Daily Progress article by Allison Wrabel, I found that John Miska, a local individual who was arrested for defying some of the draconian restrictions government imposed in the city last weekend, provides a heroic example of resistance to the police state and martial law conditions about which Whitehead warns in the editorial.

Wrabel’s article describes the situation in which Miska found himself arrested on Saturday. Access to the Charlottesville Downtown Mall was cut off except for two entrances where police at checkpoints inspected people’s bags and confiscated various items banned as potentially dangerous, including “brass knuckles, a razor, a multi-purpose knife and aerosol cans,” though openly carried and legal concealed carry handguns were alright. Writes Wrabel, “[c]ity emergency restrictions banned metal beverage containers, razors and other sharp objects and required that those items purchased from stores on the mall be left in bags.” All this, and more described in Whitehead’s editorial, occurred in the city purportedly because a year earlier some people in protesting groups had engaged in violence against each other in the city, even though there was no indication that such was likely to occur again last weekend.

On Saturday, Miska, described in Wrabel’s article as a veteran who uses a walker, engaged in civil disobedience. He went into a Charlottesville Downtown Mall CVS store and bought prohibited items — two cases of canned iced tea, a razor blade, and bug spray in an aerosol can. Then, when he walked out of the store, Miska was stopped by a state cop. After Miska refused to submit to a search and declined the cop’s offer to escort Miska, along with Miska’s purchased items, directly back to Miska’ car (Miska wanted to eat lunch in the area before returning to his car), Miska was arrested.

Miska acted courageously Saturday in defying the police state. And his comments quoted in Wrabel’s article make clear that he was intentionally engaging in civil disobedience, describing what was happening as “the loss of our constitutional rights here in Charlottesville,” declaring “I’m here going about my lawful occasions and I refuse to be bullied nor have my rights severed because of an illegitimate, illegal edict put forth by the city of Charlottesville,” and proclaiming “If you want to enforce that edict upon me at this time, take me to jail.”

Brave actions like those taken Saturday by Miska must likely be pursued much more often and by many more people if there is to be a reversal soon of the descent into more and more disrespect for our rights in America. May Miska’s example embolden more people to resist the police state that is tightening its grip in our country.]]>
http://www.ronpaulinstitute.org/archives/peace-and-prosperity/2018/august/15/john-miska-s-heroic-resistance-in-charlottesville-virginia/ http://www.ronpaulinstitute.org/archives/peace-and-prosperity/2018/august/15/john-miska-s-heroic-resistance-in-charlottesville-virginia/ Wed, 15 Aug 2018 17:13:36 GMT
Ron Paul: We Need Alternatives to Social Media Companies that Are Silencing Dissent Adam Dick http://www.ronpaulinstitute.org/archives/peace-and-prosperity/2018/august/09/ron-paul-we-need-alternatives-to-social-media-companies-that-are-silencing-dissent/ Alex Jones and Ron Paul Institute Executive Director Daniel McAdams. Paul argues that purges undertaken by social media companies often are motivated by a desire to silence people “challenging the status quo,” instead of the purported reasons social media companies offer related to “terms of service.” He also chides the companies for doing “the work for the NSA,” or the National Security Agency, in conducting mass surveillance.

Paul goes on in the interview to express hope “that technology can stay ahead of it all and that we can have alternatives to the dependency on Twitter and these other companies that have been working hand in glove with the government.”

Watch here the complete interview, in which Paul also extensively discusses United States relations with and sanctions against Iran:

]]>
http://www.ronpaulinstitute.org/archives/peace-and-prosperity/2018/august/09/ron-paul-we-need-alternatives-to-social-media-companies-that-are-silencing-dissent/ http://www.ronpaulinstitute.org/archives/peace-and-prosperity/2018/august/09/ron-paul-we-need-alternatives-to-social-media-companies-that-are-silencing-dissent/ Thu, 09 Aug 2018 19:09:55 GMT
Five Minutes Five Issues: Twitter Purge, Alex Jones, More to Come, Government Pressure, Falling Giants Adam Dick http://www.ronpaulinstitute.org/archives/peace-and-prosperity/2018/august/09/five-minutes-five-issues-twitter-purge-alex-jones-more-to-come-government-pressure-falling-giants/ Stitcher, iTunes, YouTube, and SoundCloud.

Listen to the new episode here:



Read a transcript of the new episode, including links to further information regarding the topics discussed, here:

The Ron Paul Institute for Peace and Prosperity welcomes you to Five Minutes Five Issues.

Starting in five four three two one.

Hello, I am Adam Dick, a Ron Paul Institute senior fellow.

Let’s start.

Issue one.

On Sunday, Twitter took action against three individuals with whom many people who follow Ron Paul Institute activities are familiar. Twitter took down the Twitter page of writer and United States State Department whistle-blower Peter Van Buren. Twitter also barred Scott Horton Show host Scott Horton and Ron Paul Institute Executive Director Daniel McAdams from accessing their Twitter pages to make new posts or to do anything else. Twitter restored McAdams’ access to his Twitter account on Wednesday.

Many of Van Buren’s articles and blog posts and Horton’s interviews have been featured at the RPI website.

McAdams, Horton, and Van Buren seem to be “too dangerous” for Twitter. But, you will be able to continue to find their commentary at the Ron Paul Institute website. Indeed, on Tuesday at RPI’s Ron Paul Liberty Report, McAdams, Horton, and Van Buren discussed Twitter’s actions against them.

Issue two.

This week, several major internet companies, including Facebook, Google’s YouTube, Apple’s iTunes, and Spotify, shut down much or all the content that popular talk show host Alex Jones had at the companies’ websites. Even MailChimp cut off Jones from using its email service.

In a video monologue, Luke Rudowski says what happened to Jones “sets a very dangerous precedent with severe repercussions for both people on the left and the right.” Rudowski further explains: “Now, in short, what ultimately happened today was that a handful of government-connected, powerful, monopoly tech companies decided to purge Alex Jones from their websites — removing them from their platform and deleting all the work that they have done before.”

Rudowski is right. If this can be done to Jones, we should be concerned it will be done to plenty more people.

Issue three.

Powerful people, including in the US government, want things to go much further than major internet companies purging Infowars and other Alex Jones media outlets. For example, consider this Monday Twitter post by US Senator Chris Murphy (D-CT):
Infowars is the tip of a giant iceberg of hate and lies that uses sites like Facebook and YouTube to tear our nation apart. These companies must do more than take down one website. The survival of our democracy depends on it.
Issue four.

A July 30 Axios article by David McCabe suggests the kind of governmental pressure that can be applied to help bring about purges by internet companies. McCabe discusses a 23-page draft “white paper” being circulated by US Senate Intelligence Committee Vice Chairman Mark Warner (D-VA) proclaiming the need for “increased scrutiny” of “tech giants,” including social media companies. The white paper proposes imposing liability on social media companies for users’ posts that the companies do not remove. It also threatens further regulating of social media companies.

The first particular concern discussed in detail in the white paper is “the capacity for communications technologies to promote disinformation that undermines trust in our institutions, democracy, free press and markets.” What Warner’s white paper is really saying here is that dissent that threatens to disrupt the ruling order must be suppressed.

Issue five.

The current internet giants can fall just like Goliath, just like MySpace.

Kim Dotcom challenged the big internet and media companies with his website Megaupload until government action shut it down and turned his life upside-down, including with an ongoing effort to extradite him from New Zealand to America for prosecution and punishment. On Tuesday, Dotcom posted at Twitter a message to some of the big internet companies:
Twitter, Facebook, Google, you betray your users by helping the Deep State to spy on all, you politicize your platforms to manipulate public opinion, you shadowban, censor and attack free speech. Your tech is easy to replace and your users will leave you. Your days are numbered.
I hope Dotcom is right about that.

-----

That’s a wrap.

Transcripts of Five Minutes Five Issues episodes, including links to related information, are at the Ron Paul Institute blog.

Five four three two one.]]>
http://www.ronpaulinstitute.org/archives/peace-and-prosperity/2018/august/09/five-minutes-five-issues-twitter-purge-alex-jones-more-to-come-government-pressure-falling-giants/ http://www.ronpaulinstitute.org/archives/peace-and-prosperity/2018/august/09/five-minutes-five-issues-twitter-purge-alex-jones-more-to-come-government-pressure-falling-giants/ Thu, 09 Aug 2018 18:57:08 GMT
Peter Van Buren: Twitter Suspends Me Forever Peter van Buren http://www.ronpaulinstitute.org/archives/peace-and-prosperity/2018/august/07/peter-van-buren-twitter-suspends-me-forever/

Some readers are aware I have been permanently suspended from Twitter as @wemeantwell.

This followed exchanges with several mainstream journalists over their support for America’s wars and unwillingness to challenge the lies of government. After two days of silence, Twitter sent me an auto-response saying what I wrote “harasses, intimidates, or uses fear to silence someone else’s voice.”

I don’t think I did any of that, and I wish you didn’t have to accept my word on it. I wish instead you could read what I wrote and decide for yourself. But Twitter won’t allow that. Twitter says you cannot read and make up your own mind. They have in fact eliminated all the things I have ever written there over seven years, disappeared me down the Memory Hole. That’s what censorship does; it takes the power to decide what is right and wrong away from you and gives it to someone else.

Hate what I write, hate me, block me, don’t buy my books, but please don’t celebrate handing over those choices to some company.

I lost my career at the State Department because I spoke out as a whistleblower against the Iraq War. I’ve now been silenced, again, for speaking out, this time by a corporation. I am living in the America I always feared.

Reprinted with permission from WeMeantWell.com.]]>
http://www.ronpaulinstitute.org/archives/peace-and-prosperity/2018/august/07/peter-van-buren-twitter-suspends-me-forever/ http://www.ronpaulinstitute.org/archives/peace-and-prosperity/2018/august/07/peter-van-buren-twitter-suspends-me-forever/ Tue, 07 Aug 2018 14:18:18 GMT
Five Minutes Five Issues: Criticizing Media, Bipartisanship, NY Marijuana, Weapons Salesman, Conflicting Votes Adam Dick http://www.ronpaulinstitute.org/archives/peace-and-prosperity/2018/august/05/five-minutes-five-issues-criticizing-media-bipartisanship-ny-marijuana-weapons-salesman-conflicting-votes/ Stitcher, iTunes, YouTube, and SoundCloud.

Listen to the new episode here:



Read a transcript of the new episode, including links to further information regarding the topics discussed, here:

The Ron Paul Institute for Peace and Prosperity welcomes you to Five Minutes Five Issues.

Starting in five four three two one.

Hello, I am Adam Dick, a Ron Paul Institute senior fellow.

Let’s start.

Issue one.

There is much fuss about President Donald Trump saying negative things about the media, including calling much of the media “fake news” and “the enemy of the American people.”

Trump’s criticism of the media reminds me of an astute comment by Thomas Jefferson in an 1807 letter. Jefferson wrote:
… nothing can now be believed which is seen in a newspaper. I really look with commiseration over the great body of my fellow citizens, who, reading newspapers live & die in the belief that they have known something of what has been passing in the world in their time.
Issue two.

Current events writer Glenn Greenwald commented Thursday at Twitter that “the only way to maintain the conceit [that] there is so little bipartisanship in Washington is by steadfastly ignoring the vast key policy areas where the parties unite.”

As an example of such bipartisanship, Greenwald points to the United States Senate having approved the National Defense Authorization Act (NDAA) the day before by a vote of 87 to 10. Passing the expansive bill each year is part of the process of maintaining and increasing the US government’s military spending that far exceeds that of any other nation. The legislation also facilitates US military actions across the world.

Issue three.

In the June 23 episode of Five Minutes Five Issues, I talked about the New York state government potentially legalizing recreational marijuana next year given the announcement that week by state Commissioner of Health Howard Zucker that, after the conclusion of a study requested by New York Governor Andrew Cuomo, Zucker was about to release a report recommending legalizing marijuana.

Here is an update. That report was published on July 13. Then, on Thursday, the governor created a working group that, working with individuals including state legislative leaders and marijuana bill sponsors, is charged with drafting a recreational marijuana legalization bill based on the findings of Zucker’s report. The press release announcing the formation of the working group says the desire is for the state legislature to consider the legalization legislation in its next session.

Issue four.

In last week’s episode of Five Minutes Five Issues, I contrasted the stirring up of fear of Russia and the vast advantage the United States and NATO members have over Russia in terms of military spending and gross domestic product (GDP).

Yet, President Trump insists that NATO governments increase their military spending. Why?

The answer may be found in this phrase: “military-industrial complex.” That is the conclusion of Brian Cloughley in his Friday CounterPunch article “NATO is a Goldmine for the US/Military Industrial Complex.”

In the article, Cloughley quotes Trump saying at a NATO meeting last month that “the United States makes by far the best military equipment in the world: the best jets, the best missiles, the best guns, the best everything” and listing off top US arms makers Lockheed Martin, Boeing, and Northrop Grumman.

Trump sounds like a salesman for American weapons companies in these comments, as he has at other times, such as when Trump, sitting next to Saudi Arabia Crown Prince Mohammed bin Salman at the White House in March, spoke about, while holding up promotional posters, the sale of various US weapons to Saudi Arabia.

Issue five.

On Thursday, Missouri Secretary of State Jay Ashcroft certified that three medical marijuana ballot measures have qualified, through the submission of supporting signatures, to be on the state’s November general election ballot. Tom Angell writes at Marijuana Moment that voters approving multiple medical marijuana ballot measures with conflicting provisions could lead to courts sorting out the effects of the votes.

-----

That’s a wrap.

Transcripts of Five Minutes Five Issues episodes, including links to related information, are at the Ron Paul Institute blog.

Five four three two one.]]>
http://www.ronpaulinstitute.org/archives/peace-and-prosperity/2018/august/05/five-minutes-five-issues-criticizing-media-bipartisanship-ny-marijuana-weapons-salesman-conflicting-votes/ http://www.ronpaulinstitute.org/archives/peace-and-prosperity/2018/august/05/five-minutes-five-issues-criticizing-media-bipartisanship-ny-marijuana-weapons-salesman-conflicting-votes/ Sun, 05 Aug 2018 19:43:27 GMT
TSA Passenger Screening Could Be Eliminated at 150-plus Airports Adam Dick http://www.ronpaulinstitute.org/archives/peace-and-prosperity/2018/august/01/tsa-passenger-screening-could-be-eliminated-at-150-plus-airports/ undefined

It seems that United States government actions taken in the name of “security” become more oppressive each year. This trend can be seen in the activities of the Transportation Security Administration (TSA) that corrals people into checkpoints at airports for harassment, friskings, and warrantless searches of luggage — abuse that worsens over time. For example, last year, TSA friskings were made more invasive with the introduction of a new “universal pat-down” procedure. And, this week, we have the revelation of the TSA’s Quiet Skies that James Bovard, in a new editorial, sums up as a surveillance program “spurring federal air marshals to target dozens of Americans each day on the flimsiest of pretexts.”

Maybe there is some hope for a curtailment of TSA abuses. A Wednesday CNN article by Rene Marsh and Eli Watkins relates that the TSA “is considering eliminating passenger screening at more than 150 small and medium-sized airports across the US, according to senior agency officials and internal documents obtained by CNN.”

Marsh and Watkins write that the change at these airports would affect around 10,000 passengers or “about 0.5 percemt of the people who fly out of US airports on any given day,” though any of them who have a connecting flight at one of the airports retaining a TSA checkpoint would have to endure a “security screening” there. Still, the change would be a good start at improving respect for individual rights.

Read the CNN article here.


]]>
http://www.ronpaulinstitute.org/archives/peace-and-prosperity/2018/august/01/tsa-passenger-screening-could-be-eliminated-at-150-plus-airports/ http://www.ronpaulinstitute.org/archives/peace-and-prosperity/2018/august/01/tsa-passenger-screening-could-be-eliminated-at-150-plus-airports/ Wed, 01 Aug 2018 22:44:46 GMT
Facebook Deletes 32 Pages; Blames Russians RPI Staff http://www.ronpaulinstitute.org/archives/peace-and-prosperity/2018/august/01/facebook-deletes-32-pages-blames-russians/
]]>
http://www.ronpaulinstitute.org/archives/peace-and-prosperity/2018/august/01/facebook-deletes-32-pages-blames-russians/ http://www.ronpaulinstitute.org/archives/peace-and-prosperity/2018/august/01/facebook-deletes-32-pages-blames-russians/ Wed, 01 Aug 2018 14:29:36 GMT
Five Minutes Five Issues: Defending Assange, Gerald Celente, NJ Marijuana, Russia Non-threat, Libertarian Misinfo Adam Dick http://www.ronpaulinstitute.org/archives/peace-and-prosperity/2018/july/29/five-minutes-five-issues-defending-assange-gerald-celente-nj-marijuana-russia-non-threat-libertarian-misinfo/ Stitcher, iTunes, YouTube, and SoundCloud.

Listen to the new episode here:



Read a transcript of the new episode, including links to further information regarding the topics discussed, here:

The Ron Paul Institute for Peace and Prosperity welcomes you to Five Minutes Five Issues.

Starting in five four three two one.

Hello, I am Adam Dick, a Ron Paul Institute senior fellow.

Let’s start.

Issue one.

Glenn Greenwald reported last week at The Intercept that the Ecuador government is planning to hand over Julian Assange to British police soon.

Assange of WikiLeaks has had asylum in Ecuador’s London embassy since 2012, but for the last 17 weeks his situation has been apparently much like solitary confinement in a prison.

A common expectation is that the British government would transfer Assange to the United States government to be imprisoned and prosecuted.

Comments by New York Times Deputy General Counsel David McCraw to judges at the US Ninth Circuit’s annual judicial conference this week provide some hope that much media — even if just for self-preservation — would oppose the US government taking action against Assange. At Courthouse News Service, Maria Dinzeo quotes McCraw:
'think the prosecution of him would be a very, very bad precedent for publishers,' McCraw said. 'From that incident, from everything I know, he’s sort of in a classic publisher’s position and I think the law would have a very hard time drawing a distinction between The New York Times and WikiLeaks.'
Issue two.

The latest addition to the speakers list for the Ron Paul Institute’s August 18 conference is Gerald Celente of the Trends Research Institute. Celente is a strong advocate for peace and a great public speaker. To see a list of conference speakers, buy a conference ticket, and obtain a reduced-price room at the conference hotel, go to the web page ronpaulinstitute.org/conference.

Issue three.

Might the New Jersey state government legalize marijuana by the beginning of September?

New Jersey Governor Phil Murphy campaigned for governor last year promoting his support for legalization, and he has declared that marijuana legalization is one of his priorities this year.

This week, New Jersey Attorney General Gurbir Grewal sent a memorandum to prosecutors in the state asking that “all municipal prosecutors in New Jersey seek an adjournment until September 4, 2018, or later, of any matter involving a marijuana-related offense pending in municipal court” while Grewal prepares a “statewide directive” regarding prosecutorial discretion in marijuana cases.

Claude Brodesser-Akner reports at NJ.com that a source in the state Senate says a marijuana legalization bill is expected to be considered in the Senate by September. The Senate passing that bill combined with the attorney general’s action, writes Brodesser-Akner, could together “effectively end prosecution of marijuana possession in New Jersey permanently.”

Issue four.

From the abundant media coverage of purported danger from Russia, you might suppose that Russia’s economic size and military spending exceed that of the US and NATO allies or are at least similar or close behind.

In an interview this week with host Scott Horton at the Scott Horton Show, economics and politics writer David Stockman puts Russia’s economy and the Russia government’s military spending in some context. Stockman, who is a Ron Paul Institute Advisory Board member, notes that the combined gross domestic product (GDP) of America and the 28 other NATO countries is 26 times bigger than the GDP of Russia. And military spending by the NATO countries is 16 times that of Russia, continues Stockman. Not just that, the US spending of 75 billion dollars a year on its intelligence agencies alone, explains Stockman, “is well more than the entire military budget of Russia, which is 61 billion.”

Such comparisons support Stockman’s conclusion in the interview that “the idea that Russia is a threat to the security of America, or Europe for that matter, is one of the stupidest jokes that has come down the pike in a long time.”

Issue five.

Libertarianism is one of the “right-of-center faiths.” That is a claim made by New York Times opinion columnist Ross Douthat in a Times editorial last week titled “Libertarians in the Age of Trump.” Is this a case of demonstrated ignorance about libertarianism or is this a case of purposeful deception?

-----

That’s a wrap.

Transcripts of Five Minutes Five Issues episodes, including links to related information, are at the Ron Paul Institute blog.

Five four three two one.

]]>
http://www.ronpaulinstitute.org/archives/peace-and-prosperity/2018/july/29/five-minutes-five-issues-defending-assange-gerald-celente-nj-marijuana-russia-non-threat-libertarian-misinfo/ http://www.ronpaulinstitute.org/archives/peace-and-prosperity/2018/july/29/five-minutes-five-issues-defending-assange-gerald-celente-nj-marijuana-russia-non-threat-libertarian-misinfo/ Sun, 29 Jul 2018 19:33:20 GMT
Will Russia 'Meddle' to Help Democrats in November? RPI Staff http://www.ronpaulinstitute.org/archives/peace-and-prosperity/2018/july/25/will-russia-meddle-to-help-democrats-in-november/
]]>
http://www.ronpaulinstitute.org/archives/peace-and-prosperity/2018/july/25/will-russia-meddle-to-help-democrats-in-november/ http://www.ronpaulinstitute.org/archives/peace-and-prosperity/2018/july/25/will-russia-meddle-to-help-democrats-in-november/ Wed, 25 Jul 2018 13:13:58 GMT
Five Minutes Five Issues: Cash, United California, Marijuana Regs, Trump Judges, Intelligence Community Adam Dick http://www.ronpaulinstitute.org/archives/peace-and-prosperity/2018/july/23/five-minutes-five-issues-cash-united-california-marijuana-regs-trump-judges-intelligence-community/ Stitcher, iTunesYouTube, and SoundCloud.

Listen to the new episode here:



Read a transcript of the new episode, including links to further information regarding the topics discussed, here:

The Ron Paul Institute for Peace and Prosperity welcomes you to Five Minutes Five Issues.

Starting in five four three two one.

Hello, I am Adam Dick, a Ron Paul Institute senior fellow.

Let’s start.

Issue one.
The cash system allows for an unmonitored “off the grid” space. This is also the reason why financial institutions and financial technology companies want to get rid of it. Cash transactions are outside the net that such institutions cast to harvest fees and data.
This is an interesting observation in Brett Scott’s Thursday Guardian article “The cashless society is a con – and big finance is behind it.”

Indeed, governments and their allies among businesses are together waging a war on cash, and for some of the same reasons — to access our wealth and to invade our privacy.

Issue two.

In the June 16 episode of Five Minutes Five Issues, I talked about how Californians would vote in November on a ballot measure proposing splitting California into three states. However, this week, a California Supreme Court order prevented the proposition from appearing on the state’s November ballot. The court will proceed in considering a legal challenge that the proposed splitting up of the state exceeds the power Californians can exercise via ballot measures. Depending on how the court ultimately decides the matter, the proposition could be voted on in a future election or be barred from consideration ever by voters.

Issue three.

In the June 30 episode of Five Minutes five Issues, I talked about a medical marijuana ballot measure having been approved that week by Oklahoma voters.

Later, the state’s Board of Health adopted rules for implementing the ballot measure, many of which were clearly not in line with the ballot measure’s mandate.

On Wednesday, Oklahoma Attorney General Mike Hunter sought to put an end to much of the Board of Health’s effort to undermine the approved ballot measure via regulations. Hunter wrote in a letter to the Board of Health’s interim commissioner that the board’s rules to, first, limit and prohibit the sale of edible, smokable, vapable, and other forms of marijuana, and, second, require a licensed pharmacist to be present at least 40 hours a week at each dispensary, lack statutory authority because nowhere in the ballot measure text are such rules expressly or impliedly authorized. In the letter, Hunter also notes there are similar concerns about other rules imposed by the Board of Health, including but not limited to rules restricting the location of dispensaries; prohibiting dispensaries from co-locating with other businesses; requiring medical marijuana to be grown, processed, and dispensed in enclosed structures; requiring a surety bond for licensing; setting hours of operation; and limiting the amount of THC in products for sale or distribution.

Issue four.

Much attention is being paid to President Donald Trump’s nomination of Brett Kavanaugh to the United States Supreme Court and the US Senate’s consideration of that nomination. If the Senate approves the nomination, Kavanaugh will be the second Trump appointee at the court.

Less attention has been paid to Trump’s nominations of individuals to be appellate court judges. John Gramlich notes in a Monday Pew Research Center article that Trump has successfully appointed more appeals court judges than had any presidents going back to Jimmy Carter by this point of their presidencies.

Issue five.

There has been much criticism this week of President Donald Trump expressing some skepticism about the analysis and conclusions of the so-called US intelligence community. On Wednesday, interviewer and writer Scott Horton provided at Twitter some pithy perspective on this criticism. Horton writes:
Get this: back a few years ago the "intelligence community" and the media convinced Americans (you?) that _Saddam Hussein's Iraq_ - which barely had an army, no navy, no airforce, and no alliance with Osama [bin Laden]'s al Qaeda, - was going to attack the USA if we didn't attack them first.
-----

That’s a wrap.

Transcripts of Five Minutes Five Issues episodes, including links to related information, are at the Ron Paul Institute blog.

Five four three two one.]]>
http://www.ronpaulinstitute.org/archives/peace-and-prosperity/2018/july/23/five-minutes-five-issues-cash-united-california-marijuana-regs-trump-judges-intelligence-community/ http://www.ronpaulinstitute.org/archives/peace-and-prosperity/2018/july/23/five-minutes-five-issues-cash-united-california-marijuana-regs-trump-judges-intelligence-community/ Mon, 23 Jul 2018 18:05:11 GMT
John Miska’s Heroic Resistance in Charlottesville, Virginia Adam Dick http://www.ronpaulinstitute.org/archives/featured-articles/2018/august/15/john-miska-s-heroic-resistance-in-charlottesville-virginia/

Reading Rutherford Institute President John W. Whitehead’s Monday editorial “From Boston to Ferguson to Charlottesville: The Evolution of a Police State Lockdown,” I wanted to find out more about an arrest Whitehead mentions took place over the weekend in his hometown of Charlottesville, Virginia. Following a link in Whitehead’s editorial to a Daily Progress article by Allison Wrabel, I found that John Miska, a local individual who was arrested for defying some of the draconian restrictions government imposed in the city last weekend, provides a heroic example of resistance to the police state and martial law conditions about which Whitehead warns in the editorial.

Wrabel’s article describes the situation in which Miska found himself arrested on Saturday. Access to the Charlottesville Downtown Mall was cut off except for two entrances where police at checkpoints inspected people’s bags and confiscated various items banned as potentially dangerous, including “brass knuckles, a razor, a multi-purpose knife and aerosol cans,” though openly carried and legal concealed carry handguns were alright. Writes Wrabel, “[c]ity emergency restrictions banned metal beverage containers, razors and other sharp objects and required that those items purchased from stores on the mall be left in bags.” All this, and more described in Whitehead’s editorial, occurred in the city purportedly because a year earlier some people in protesting groups had engaged in violence against each other in the city, even though there was no indication that such was likely to occur again last weekend.

On Saturday, Miska, described in Wrabel’s article as a veteran who uses a walker, engaged in civil disobedience. He went into a Charlottesville Downtown Mall CVS store and bought prohibited items — two cases of canned iced tea, a razor blade, and bug spray in an aerosol can. Then, when he walked out of the store, Miska was stopped by a state cop. After Miska refused to submit to a search and declined the cop’s offer to escort Miska, along with Miska’s purchased items, directly back to Miska’ car (Miska wanted to eat lunch in the area before returning to his car), Miska was arrested.

Miska acted courageously Saturday in defying the police state. And his comments quoted in Wrabel’s article make clear that he was intentionally engaging in civil disobedience, describing what was happening as “the loss of our constitutional rights here in Charlottesville,” declaring “I’m here going about my lawful occasions and I refuse to be bullied nor have my rights severed because of an illegitimate, illegal edict put forth by the city of Charlottesville,” and proclaiming “If you want to enforce that edict upon me at this time, take me to jail.”

Brave actions like those taken Saturday by Miska must likely be pursued much more often and by many more people if there is to be a reversal soon of the descent into more and more disrespect for our rights in America. May Miska’s example embolden more people to resist the police state that is tightening its grip in our country.]]>
http://www.ronpaulinstitute.org/archives/featured-articles/2018/august/15/john-miska-s-heroic-resistance-in-charlottesville-virginia/ http://www.ronpaulinstitute.org/archives/featured-articles/2018/august/15/john-miska-s-heroic-resistance-in-charlottesville-virginia/ Wed, 15 Aug 2018 17:13:36 GMT
Ron Paul: We Need Alternatives to Social Media Companies that Are Silencing Dissent Adam Dick http://www.ronpaulinstitute.org/archives/featured-articles/2018/august/09/ron-paul-we-need-alternatives-to-social-media-companies-that-are-silencing-dissent/ Alex Jones and Ron Paul Institute Executive Director Daniel McAdams. Paul argues that purges undertaken by social media companies often are motivated by a desire to silence people “challenging the status quo,” instead of the purported reasons social media companies offer related to “terms of service.” He also chides the companies for doing “the work for the NSA,” or the National Security Agency, in conducting mass surveillance.

Paul goes on in the interview to express hope “that technology can stay ahead of it all and that we can have alternatives to the dependency on Twitter and these other companies that have been working hand in glove with the government.”

Watch here the complete interview, in which Paul also extensively discusses United States relations with and sanctions against Iran:

]]>
http://www.ronpaulinstitute.org/archives/featured-articles/2018/august/09/ron-paul-we-need-alternatives-to-social-media-companies-that-are-silencing-dissent/ http://www.ronpaulinstitute.org/archives/featured-articles/2018/august/09/ron-paul-we-need-alternatives-to-social-media-companies-that-are-silencing-dissent/ Thu, 09 Aug 2018 19:09:55 GMT
Five Minutes Five Issues: Twitter Purge, Alex Jones, More to Come, Government Pressure, Falling Giants Adam Dick http://www.ronpaulinstitute.org/archives/featured-articles/2018/august/09/five-minutes-five-issues-twitter-purge-alex-jones-more-to-come-government-pressure-falling-giants/ Stitcher, iTunes, YouTube, and SoundCloud.

Listen to the new episode here:



Read a transcript of the new episode, including links to further information regarding the topics discussed, here:

The Ron Paul Institute for Peace and Prosperity welcomes you to Five Minutes Five Issues.

Starting in five four three two one.

Hello, I am Adam Dick, a Ron Paul Institute senior fellow.

Let’s start.

Issue one.

On Sunday, Twitter took action against three individuals with whom many people who follow Ron Paul Institute activities are familiar. Twitter took down the Twitter page of writer and United States State Department whistle-blower Peter Van Buren. Twitter also barred Scott Horton Show host Scott Horton and Ron Paul Institute Executive Director Daniel McAdams from accessing their Twitter pages to make new posts or to do anything else. Twitter restored McAdams’ access to his Twitter account on Wednesday.

Many of Van Buren’s articles and blog posts and Horton’s interviews have been featured at the RPI website.

McAdams, Horton, and Van Buren seem to be “too dangerous” for Twitter. But, you will be able to continue to find their commentary at the Ron Paul Institute website. Indeed, on Tuesday at RPI’s Ron Paul Liberty Report, McAdams, Horton, and Van Buren discussed Twitter’s actions against them.

Issue two.

This week, several major internet companies, including Facebook, Google’s YouTube, Apple’s iTunes, and Spotify, shut down much or all the content that popular talk show host Alex Jones had at the companies’ websites. Even MailChimp cut off Jones from using its email service.

In a video monologue, Luke Rudowski says what happened to Jones “sets a very dangerous precedent with severe repercussions for both people on the left and the right.” Rudowski further explains: “Now, in short, what ultimately happened today was that a handful of government-connected, powerful, monopoly tech companies decided to purge Alex Jones from their websites — removing them from their platform and deleting all the work that they have done before.”

Rudowski is right. If this can be done to Jones, we should be concerned it will be done to plenty more people.

Issue three.

Powerful people, including in the US government, want things to go much further than major internet companies purging Infowars and other Alex Jones media outlets. For example, consider this Monday Twitter post by US Senator Chris Murphy (D-CT):
Infowars is the tip of a giant iceberg of hate and lies that uses sites like Facebook and YouTube to tear our nation apart. These companies must do more than take down one website. The survival of our democracy depends on it.
Issue four.

A July 30 Axios article by David McCabe suggests the kind of governmental pressure that can be applied to help bring about purges by internet companies. McCabe discusses a 23-page draft “white paper” being circulated by US Senate Intelligence Committee Vice Chairman Mark Warner (D-VA) proclaiming the need for “increased scrutiny” of “tech giants,” including social media companies. The white paper proposes imposing liability on social media companies for users’ posts that the companies do not remove. It also threatens further regulating of social media companies.

The first particular concern discussed in detail in the white paper is “the capacity for communications technologies to promote disinformation that undermines trust in our institutions, democracy, free press and markets.” What Warner’s white paper is really saying here is that dissent that threatens to disrupt the ruling order must be suppressed.

Issue five.

The current internet giants can fall just like Goliath, just like MySpace.

Kim Dotcom challenged the big internet and media companies with his website Megaupload until government action shut it down and turned his life upside-down, including with an ongoing effort to extradite him from New Zealand to America for prosecution and punishment. On Tuesday, Dotcom posted at Twitter a message to some of the big internet companies:
Twitter, Facebook, Google, you betray your users by helping the Deep State to spy on all, you politicize your platforms to manipulate public opinion, you shadowban, censor and attack free speech. Your tech is easy to replace and your users will leave you. Your days are numbered.
I hope Dotcom is right about that.

-----

That’s a wrap.

Transcripts of Five Minutes Five Issues episodes, including links to related information, are at the Ron Paul Institute blog.

Five four three two one.]]>
http://www.ronpaulinstitute.org/archives/featured-articles/2018/august/09/five-minutes-five-issues-twitter-purge-alex-jones-more-to-come-government-pressure-falling-giants/ http://www.ronpaulinstitute.org/archives/featured-articles/2018/august/09/five-minutes-five-issues-twitter-purge-alex-jones-more-to-come-government-pressure-falling-giants/ Thu, 09 Aug 2018 18:57:08 GMT
Peter Van Buren: Twitter Suspends Me Forever Peter van Buren http://www.ronpaulinstitute.org/archives/featured-articles/2018/august/07/peter-van-buren-twitter-suspends-me-forever/

Some readers are aware I have been permanently suspended from Twitter as @wemeantwell.

This followed exchanges with several mainstream journalists over their support for America’s wars and unwillingness to challenge the lies of government. After two days of silence, Twitter sent me an auto-response saying what I wrote “harasses, intimidates, or uses fear to silence someone else’s voice.”

I don’t think I did any of that, and I wish you didn’t have to accept my word on it. I wish instead you could read what I wrote and decide for yourself. But Twitter won’t allow that. Twitter says you cannot read and make up your own mind. They have in fact eliminated all the things I have ever written there over seven years, disappeared me down the Memory Hole. That’s what censorship does; it takes the power to decide what is right and wrong away from you and gives it to someone else.

Hate what I write, hate me, block me, don’t buy my books, but please don’t celebrate handing over those choices to some company.

I lost my career at the State Department because I spoke out as a whistleblower against the Iraq War. I’ve now been silenced, again, for speaking out, this time by a corporation. I am living in the America I always feared.

Reprinted with permission from WeMeantWell.com.]]>
http://www.ronpaulinstitute.org/archives/featured-articles/2018/august/07/peter-van-buren-twitter-suspends-me-forever/ http://www.ronpaulinstitute.org/archives/featured-articles/2018/august/07/peter-van-buren-twitter-suspends-me-forever/ Tue, 07 Aug 2018 14:18:18 GMT
Five Minutes Five Issues: Criticizing Media, Bipartisanship, NY Marijuana, Weapons Salesman, Conflicting Votes Adam Dick http://www.ronpaulinstitute.org/archives/featured-articles/2018/august/05/five-minutes-five-issues-criticizing-media-bipartisanship-ny-marijuana-weapons-salesman-conflicting-votes/ Stitcher, iTunes, YouTube, and SoundCloud.

Listen to the new episode here:



Read a transcript of the new episode, including links to further information regarding the topics discussed, here:

The Ron Paul Institute for Peace and Prosperity welcomes you to Five Minutes Five Issues.

Starting in five four three two one.

Hello, I am Adam Dick, a Ron Paul Institute senior fellow.

Let’s start.

Issue one.

There is much fuss about President Donald Trump saying negative things about the media, including calling much of the media “fake news” and “the enemy of the American people.”

Trump’s criticism of the media reminds me of an astute comment by Thomas Jefferson in an 1807 letter. Jefferson wrote:
… nothing can now be believed which is seen in a newspaper. I really look with commiseration over the great body of my fellow citizens, who, reading newspapers live & die in the belief that they have known something of what has been passing in the world in their time.
Issue two.

Current events writer Glenn Greenwald commented Thursday at Twitter that “the only way to maintain the conceit [that] there is so little bipartisanship in Washington is by steadfastly ignoring the vast key policy areas where the parties unite.”

As an example of such bipartisanship, Greenwald points to the United States Senate having approved the National Defense Authorization Act (NDAA) the day before by a vote of 87 to 10. Passing the expansive bill each year is part of the process of maintaining and increasing the US government’s military spending that far exceeds that of any other nation. The legislation also facilitates US military actions across the world.

Issue three.

In the June 23 episode of Five Minutes Five Issues, I talked about the New York state government potentially legalizing recreational marijuana next year given the announcement that week by state Commissioner of Health Howard Zucker that, after the conclusion of a study requested by New York Governor Andrew Cuomo, Zucker was about to release a report recommending legalizing marijuana.

Here is an update. That report was published on July 13. Then, on Thursday, the governor created a working group that, working with individuals including state legislative leaders and marijuana bill sponsors, is charged with drafting a recreational marijuana legalization bill based on the findings of Zucker’s report. The press release announcing the formation of the working group says the desire is for the state legislature to consider the legalization legislation in its next session.

Issue four.

In last week’s episode of Five Minutes Five Issues, I contrasted the stirring up of fear of Russia and the vast advantage the United States and NATO members have over Russia in terms of military spending and gross domestic product (GDP).

Yet, President Trump insists that NATO governments increase their military spending. Why?

The answer may be found in this phrase: “military-industrial complex.” That is the conclusion of Brian Cloughley in his Friday CounterPunch article “NATO is a Goldmine for the US/Military Industrial Complex.”

In the article, Cloughley quotes Trump saying at a NATO meeting last month that “the United States makes by far the best military equipment in the world: the best jets, the best missiles, the best guns, the best everything” and listing off top US arms makers Lockheed Martin, Boeing, and Northrop Grumman.

Trump sounds like a salesman for American weapons companies in these comments, as he has at other times, such as when Trump, sitting next to Saudi Arabia Crown Prince Mohammed bin Salman at the White House in March, spoke about, while holding up promotional posters, the sale of various US weapons to Saudi Arabia.

Issue five.

On Thursday, Missouri Secretary of State Jay Ashcroft certified that three medical marijuana ballot measures have qualified, through the submission of supporting signatures, to be on the state’s November general election ballot. Tom Angell writes at Marijuana Moment that voters approving multiple medical marijuana ballot measures with conflicting provisions could lead to courts sorting out the effects of the votes.

-----

That’s a wrap.

Transcripts of Five Minutes Five Issues episodes, including links to related information, are at the Ron Paul Institute blog.

Five four three two one.]]>
http://www.ronpaulinstitute.org/archives/featured-articles/2018/august/05/five-minutes-five-issues-criticizing-media-bipartisanship-ny-marijuana-weapons-salesman-conflicting-votes/ http://www.ronpaulinstitute.org/archives/featured-articles/2018/august/05/five-minutes-five-issues-criticizing-media-bipartisanship-ny-marijuana-weapons-salesman-conflicting-votes/ Sun, 05 Aug 2018 19:43:27 GMT
TSA Passenger Screening Could Be Eliminated at 150-plus Airports Adam Dick http://www.ronpaulinstitute.org/archives/featured-articles/2018/august/01/tsa-passenger-screening-could-be-eliminated-at-150-plus-airports/ undefined

It seems that United States government actions taken in the name of “security” become more oppressive each year. This trend can be seen in the activities of the Transportation Security Administration (TSA) that corrals people into checkpoints at airports for harassment, friskings, and warrantless searches of luggage — abuse that worsens over time. For example, last year, TSA friskings were made more invasive with the introduction of a new “universal pat-down” procedure. And, this week, we have the revelation of the TSA’s Quiet Skies that James Bovard, in a new editorial, sums up as a surveillance program “spurring federal air marshals to target dozens of Americans each day on the flimsiest of pretexts.”

Maybe there is some hope for a curtailment of TSA abuses. A Wednesday CNN article by Rene Marsh and Eli Watkins relates that the TSA “is considering eliminating passenger screening at more than 150 small and medium-sized airports across the US, according to senior agency officials and internal documents obtained by CNN.”

Marsh and Watkins write that the change at these airports would affect around 10,000 passengers or “about 0.5 percemt of the people who fly out of US airports on any given day,” though any of them who have a connecting flight at one of the airports retaining a TSA checkpoint would have to endure a “security screening” there. Still, the change would be a good start at improving respect for individual rights.

Read the CNN article here.


]]>
http://www.ronpaulinstitute.org/archives/featured-articles/2018/august/01/tsa-passenger-screening-could-be-eliminated-at-150-plus-airports/ http://www.ronpaulinstitute.org/archives/featured-articles/2018/august/01/tsa-passenger-screening-could-be-eliminated-at-150-plus-airports/ Wed, 01 Aug 2018 22:44:46 GMT
Facebook Deletes 32 Pages; Blames Russians RPI Staff http://www.ronpaulinstitute.org/archives/featured-articles/2018/august/01/facebook-deletes-32-pages-blames-russians/
]]>
http://www.ronpaulinstitute.org/archives/featured-articles/2018/august/01/facebook-deletes-32-pages-blames-russians/ http://www.ronpaulinstitute.org/archives/featured-articles/2018/august/01/facebook-deletes-32-pages-blames-russians/ Wed, 01 Aug 2018 14:29:36 GMT
Five Minutes Five Issues: Defending Assange, Gerald Celente, NJ Marijuana, Russia Non-threat, Libertarian Misinfo Adam Dick http://www.ronpaulinstitute.org/archives/featured-articles/2018/july/29/five-minutes-five-issues-defending-assange-gerald-celente-nj-marijuana-russia-non-threat-libertarian-misinfo/ Stitcher, iTunes, YouTube, and SoundCloud.

Listen to the new episode here:



Read a transcript of the new episode, including links to further information regarding the topics discussed, here:

The Ron Paul Institute for Peace and Prosperity welcomes you to Five Minutes Five Issues.

Starting in five four three two one.

Hello, I am Adam Dick, a Ron Paul Institute senior fellow.

Let’s start.

Issue one.

Glenn Greenwald reported last week at The Intercept that the Ecuador government is planning to hand over Julian Assange to British police soon.

Assange of WikiLeaks has had asylum in Ecuador’s London embassy since 2012, but for the last 17 weeks his situation has been apparently much like solitary confinement in a prison.

A common expectation is that the British government would transfer Assange to the United States government to be imprisoned and prosecuted.

Comments by New York Times Deputy General Counsel David McCraw to judges at the US Ninth Circuit’s annual judicial conference this week provide some hope that much media — even if just for self-preservation — would oppose the US government taking action against Assange. At Courthouse News Service, Maria Dinzeo quotes McCraw:
'think the prosecution of him would be a very, very bad precedent for publishers,' McCraw said. 'From that incident, from everything I know, he’s sort of in a classic publisher’s position and I think the law would have a very hard time drawing a distinction between The New York Times and WikiLeaks.'
Issue two.

The latest addition to the speakers list for the Ron Paul Institute’s August 18 conference is Gerald Celente of the Trends Research Institute. Celente is a strong advocate for peace and a great public speaker. To see a list of conference speakers, buy a conference ticket, and obtain a reduced-price room at the conference hotel, go to the web page ronpaulinstitute.org/conference.

Issue three.

Might the New Jersey state government legalize marijuana by the beginning of September?

New Jersey Governor Phil Murphy campaigned for governor last year promoting his support for legalization, and he has declared that marijuana legalization is one of his priorities this year.

This week, New Jersey Attorney General Gurbir Grewal sent a memorandum to prosecutors in the state asking that “all municipal prosecutors in New Jersey seek an adjournment until September 4, 2018, or later, of any matter involving a marijuana-related offense pending in municipal court” while Grewal prepares a “statewide directive” regarding prosecutorial discretion in marijuana cases.

Claude Brodesser-Akner reports at NJ.com that a source in the state Senate says a marijuana legalization bill is expected to be considered in the Senate by September. The Senate passing that bill combined with the attorney general’s action, writes Brodesser-Akner, could together “effectively end prosecution of marijuana possession in New Jersey permanently.”

Issue four.

From the abundant media coverage of purported danger from Russia, you might suppose that Russia’s economic size and military spending exceed that of the US and NATO allies or are at least similar or close behind.

In an interview this week with host Scott Horton at the Scott Horton Show, economics and politics writer David Stockman puts Russia’s economy and the Russia government’s military spending in some context. Stockman, who is a Ron Paul Institute Advisory Board member, notes that the combined gross domestic product (GDP) of America and the 28 other NATO countries is 26 times bigger than the GDP of Russia. And military spending by the NATO countries is 16 times that of Russia, continues Stockman. Not just that, the US spending of 75 billion dollars a year on its intelligence agencies alone, explains Stockman, “is well more than the entire military budget of Russia, which is 61 billion.”

Such comparisons support Stockman’s conclusion in the interview that “the idea that Russia is a threat to the security of America, or Europe for that matter, is one of the stupidest jokes that has come down the pike in a long time.”

Issue five.

Libertarianism is one of the “right-of-center faiths.” That is a claim made by New York Times opinion columnist Ross Douthat in a Times editorial last week titled “Libertarians in the Age of Trump.” Is this a case of demonstrated ignorance about libertarianism or is this a case of purposeful deception?

-----

That’s a wrap.

Transcripts of Five Minutes Five Issues episodes, including links to related information, are at the Ron Paul Institute blog.

Five four three two one.

]]>
http://www.ronpaulinstitute.org/archives/featured-articles/2018/july/29/five-minutes-five-issues-defending-assange-gerald-celente-nj-marijuana-russia-non-threat-libertarian-misinfo/ http://www.ronpaulinstitute.org/archives/featured-articles/2018/july/29/five-minutes-five-issues-defending-assange-gerald-celente-nj-marijuana-russia-non-threat-libertarian-misinfo/ Sun, 29 Jul 2018 19:33:20 GMT
Will Russia 'Meddle' to Help Democrats in November? RPI Staff http://www.ronpaulinstitute.org/archives/featured-articles/2018/july/25/will-russia-meddle-to-help-democrats-in-november/
]]>
http://www.ronpaulinstitute.org/archives/featured-articles/2018/july/25/will-russia-meddle-to-help-democrats-in-november/ http://www.ronpaulinstitute.org/archives/featured-articles/2018/july/25/will-russia-meddle-to-help-democrats-in-november/ Wed, 25 Jul 2018 13:13:58 GMT
Five Minutes Five Issues: Cash, United California, Marijuana Regs, Trump Judges, Intelligence Community Adam Dick http://www.ronpaulinstitute.org/archives/featured-articles/2018/july/23/five-minutes-five-issues-cash-united-california-marijuana-regs-trump-judges-intelligence-community/ Stitcher, iTunesYouTube, and SoundCloud.

Listen to the new episode here:



Read a transcript of the new episode, including links to further information regarding the topics discussed, here:

The Ron Paul Institute for Peace and Prosperity welcomes you to Five Minutes Five Issues.

Starting in five four three two one.

Hello, I am Adam Dick, a Ron Paul Institute senior fellow.

Let’s start.

Issue one.
The cash system allows for an unmonitored “off the grid” space. This is also the reason why financial institutions and financial technology companies want to get rid of it. Cash transactions are outside the net that such institutions cast to harvest fees and data.
This is an interesting observation in Brett Scott’s Thursday Guardian article “The cashless society is a con – and big finance is behind it.”

Indeed, governments and their allies among businesses are together waging a war on cash, and for some of the same reasons — to access our wealth and to invade our privacy.

Issue two.

In the June 16 episode of Five Minutes Five Issues, I talked about how Californians would vote in November on a ballot measure proposing splitting California into three states. However, this week, a California Supreme Court order prevented the proposition from appearing on the state’s November ballot. The court will proceed in considering a legal challenge that the proposed splitting up of the state exceeds the power Californians can exercise via ballot measures. Depending on how the court ultimately decides the matter, the proposition could be voted on in a future election or be barred from consideration ever by voters.

Issue three.

In the June 30 episode of Five Minutes five Issues, I talked about a medical marijuana ballot measure having been approved that week by Oklahoma voters.

Later, the state’s Board of Health adopted rules for implementing the ballot measure, many of which were clearly not in line with the ballot measure’s mandate.

On Wednesday, Oklahoma Attorney General Mike Hunter sought to put an end to much of the Board of Health’s effort to undermine the approved ballot measure via regulations. Hunter wrote in a letter to the Board of Health’s interim commissioner that the board’s rules to, first, limit and prohibit the sale of edible, smokable, vapable, and other forms of marijuana, and, second, require a licensed pharmacist to be present at least 40 hours a week at each dispensary, lack statutory authority because nowhere in the ballot measure text are such rules expressly or impliedly authorized. In the letter, Hunter also notes there are similar concerns about other rules imposed by the Board of Health, including but not limited to rules restricting the location of dispensaries; prohibiting dispensaries from co-locating with other businesses; requiring medical marijuana to be grown, processed, and dispensed in enclosed structures; requiring a surety bond for licensing; setting hours of operation; and limiting the amount of THC in products for sale or distribution.

Issue four.

Much attention is being paid to President Donald Trump’s nomination of Brett Kavanaugh to the United States Supreme Court and the US Senate’s consideration of that nomination. If the Senate approves the nomination, Kavanaugh will be the second Trump appointee at the court.

Less attention has been paid to Trump’s nominations of individuals to be appellate court judges. John Gramlich notes in a Monday Pew Research Center article that Trump has successfully appointed more appeals court judges than had any presidents going back to Jimmy Carter by this point of their presidencies.

Issue five.

There has been much criticism this week of President Donald Trump expressing some skepticism about the analysis and conclusions of the so-called US intelligence community. On Wednesday, interviewer and writer Scott Horton provided at Twitter some pithy perspective on this criticism. Horton writes:
Get this: back a few years ago the "intelligence community" and the media convinced Americans (you?) that _Saddam Hussein's Iraq_ - which barely had an army, no navy, no airforce, and no alliance with Osama [bin Laden]'s al Qaeda, - was going to attack the USA if we didn't attack them first.
-----

That’s a wrap.

Transcripts of Five Minutes Five Issues episodes, including links to related information, are at the Ron Paul Institute blog.

Five four three two one.]]>
http://www.ronpaulinstitute.org/archives/featured-articles/2018/july/23/five-minutes-five-issues-cash-united-california-marijuana-regs-trump-judges-intelligence-community/ http://www.ronpaulinstitute.org/archives/featured-articles/2018/july/23/five-minutes-five-issues-cash-united-california-marijuana-regs-trump-judges-intelligence-community/ Mon, 23 Jul 2018 18:05:11 GMT
John Miska’s Heroic Resistance in Charlottesville, Virginia Adam Dick http://www.ronpaulinstitute.org/archives/neocon-watch/2018/august/15/john-miska-s-heroic-resistance-in-charlottesville-virginia/

Reading Rutherford Institute President John W. Whitehead’s Monday editorial “From Boston to Ferguson to Charlottesville: The Evolution of a Police State Lockdown,” I wanted to find out more about an arrest Whitehead mentions took place over the weekend in his hometown of Charlottesville, Virginia. Following a link in Whitehead’s editorial to a Daily Progress article by Allison Wrabel, I found that John Miska, a local individual who was arrested for defying some of the draconian restrictions government imposed in the city last weekend, provides a heroic example of resistance to the police state and martial law conditions about which Whitehead warns in the editorial.

Wrabel’s article describes the situation in which Miska found himself arrested on Saturday. Access to the Charlottesville Downtown Mall was cut off except for two entrances where police at checkpoints inspected people’s bags and confiscated various items banned as potentially dangerous, including “brass knuckles, a razor, a multi-purpose knife and aerosol cans,” though openly carried and legal concealed carry handguns were alright. Writes Wrabel, “[c]ity emergency restrictions banned metal beverage containers, razors and other sharp objects and required that those items purchased from stores on the mall be left in bags.” All this, and more described in Whitehead’s editorial, occurred in the city purportedly because a year earlier some people in protesting groups had engaged in violence against each other in the city, even though there was no indication that such was likely to occur again last weekend.

On Saturday, Miska, described in Wrabel’s article as a veteran who uses a walker, engaged in civil disobedience. He went into a Charlottesville Downtown Mall CVS store and bought prohibited items — two cases of canned iced tea, a razor blade, and bug spray in an aerosol can. Then, when he walked out of the store, Miska was stopped by a state cop. After Miska refused to submit to a search and declined the cop’s offer to escort Miska, along with Miska’s purchased items, directly back to Miska’ car (Miska wanted to eat lunch in the area before returning to his car), Miska was arrested.

Miska acted courageously Saturday in defying the police state. And his comments quoted in Wrabel’s article make clear that he was intentionally engaging in civil disobedience, describing what was happening as “the loss of our constitutional rights here in Charlottesville,” declaring “I’m here going about my lawful occasions and I refuse to be bullied nor have my rights severed because of an illegitimate, illegal edict put forth by the city of Charlottesville,” and proclaiming “If you want to enforce that edict upon me at this time, take me to jail.”

Brave actions like those taken Saturday by Miska must likely be pursued much more often and by many more people if there is to be a reversal soon of the descent into more and more disrespect for our rights in America. May Miska’s example embolden more people to resist the police state that is tightening its grip in our country.]]>
http://www.ronpaulinstitute.org/archives/neocon-watch/2018/august/15/john-miska-s-heroic-resistance-in-charlottesville-virginia/ http://www.ronpaulinstitute.org/archives/neocon-watch/2018/august/15/john-miska-s-heroic-resistance-in-charlottesville-virginia/ Wed, 15 Aug 2018 17:13:36 GMT
Ron Paul: We Need Alternatives to Social Media Companies that Are Silencing Dissent Adam Dick http://www.ronpaulinstitute.org/archives/neocon-watch/2018/august/09/ron-paul-we-need-alternatives-to-social-media-companies-that-are-silencing-dissent/ Alex Jones and Ron Paul Institute Executive Director Daniel McAdams. Paul argues that purges undertaken by social media companies often are motivated by a desire to silence people “challenging the status quo,” instead of the purported reasons social media companies offer related to “terms of service.” He also chides the companies for doing “the work for the NSA,” or the National Security Agency, in conducting mass surveillance.

Paul goes on in the interview to express hope “that technology can stay ahead of it all and that we can have alternatives to the dependency on Twitter and these other companies that have been working hand in glove with the government.”

Watch here the complete interview, in which Paul also extensively discusses United States relations with and sanctions against Iran:

]]>
http://www.ronpaulinstitute.org/archives/neocon-watch/2018/august/09/ron-paul-we-need-alternatives-to-social-media-companies-that-are-silencing-dissent/ http://www.ronpaulinstitute.org/archives/neocon-watch/2018/august/09/ron-paul-we-need-alternatives-to-social-media-companies-that-are-silencing-dissent/ Thu, 09 Aug 2018 19:09:55 GMT
Five Minutes Five Issues: Twitter Purge, Alex Jones, More to Come, Government Pressure, Falling Giants Adam Dick http://www.ronpaulinstitute.org/archives/neocon-watch/2018/august/09/five-minutes-five-issues-twitter-purge-alex-jones-more-to-come-government-pressure-falling-giants/ Stitcher, iTunes, YouTube, and SoundCloud.

Listen to the new episode here:



Read a transcript of the new episode, including links to further information regarding the topics discussed, here:

The Ron Paul Institute for Peace and Prosperity welcomes you to Five Minutes Five Issues.

Starting in five four three two one.

Hello, I am Adam Dick, a Ron Paul Institute senior fellow.

Let’s start.

Issue one.

On Sunday, Twitter took action against three individuals with whom many people who follow Ron Paul Institute activities are familiar. Twitter took down the Twitter page of writer and United States State Department whistle-blower Peter Van Buren. Twitter also barred Scott Horton Show host Scott Horton and Ron Paul Institute Executive Director Daniel McAdams from accessing their Twitter pages to make new posts or to do anything else. Twitter restored McAdams’ access to his Twitter account on Wednesday.

Many of Van Buren’s articles and blog posts and Horton’s interviews have been featured at the RPI website.

McAdams, Horton, and Van Buren seem to be “too dangerous” for Twitter. But, you will be able to continue to find their commentary at the Ron Paul Institute website. Indeed, on Tuesday at RPI’s Ron Paul Liberty Report, McAdams, Horton, and Van Buren discussed Twitter’s actions against them.

Issue two.

This week, several major internet companies, including Facebook, Google’s YouTube, Apple’s iTunes, and Spotify, shut down much or all the content that popular talk show host Alex Jones had at the companies’ websites. Even MailChimp cut off Jones from using its email service.

In a video monologue, Luke Rudowski says what happened to Jones “sets a very dangerous precedent with severe repercussions for both people on the left and the right.” Rudowski further explains: “Now, in short, what ultimately happened today was that a handful of government-connected, powerful, monopoly tech companies decided to purge Alex Jones from their websites — removing them from their platform and deleting all the work that they have done before.”

Rudowski is right. If this can be done to Jones, we should be concerned it will be done to plenty more people.

Issue three.

Powerful people, including in the US government, want things to go much further than major internet companies purging Infowars and other Alex Jones media outlets. For example, consider this Monday Twitter post by US Senator Chris Murphy (D-CT):
Infowars is the tip of a giant iceberg of hate and lies that uses sites like Facebook and YouTube to tear our nation apart. These companies must do more than take down one website. The survival of our democracy depends on it.
Issue four.

A July 30 Axios article by David McCabe suggests the kind of governmental pressure that can be applied to help bring about purges by internet companies. McCabe discusses a 23-page draft “white paper” being circulated by US Senate Intelligence Committee Vice Chairman Mark Warner (D-VA) proclaiming the need for “increased scrutiny” of “tech giants,” including social media companies. The white paper proposes imposing liability on social media companies for users’ posts that the companies do not remove. It also threatens further regulating of social media companies.

The first particular concern discussed in detail in the white paper is “the capacity for communications technologies to promote disinformation that undermines trust in our institutions, democracy, free press and markets.” What Warner’s white paper is really saying here is that dissent that threatens to disrupt the ruling order must be suppressed.

Issue five.

The current internet giants can fall just like Goliath, just like MySpace.

Kim Dotcom challenged the big internet and media companies with his website Megaupload until government action shut it down and turned his life upside-down, including with an ongoing effort to extradite him from New Zealand to America for prosecution and punishment. On Tuesday, Dotcom posted at Twitter a message to some of the big internet companies:
Twitter, Facebook, Google, you betray your users by helping the Deep State to spy on all, you politicize your platforms to manipulate public opinion, you shadowban, censor and attack free speech. Your tech is easy to replace and your users will leave you. Your days are numbered.
I hope Dotcom is right about that.

-----

That’s a wrap.

Transcripts of Five Minutes Five Issues episodes, including links to related information, are at the Ron Paul Institute blog.

Five four three two one.]]>
http://www.ronpaulinstitute.org/archives/neocon-watch/2018/august/09/five-minutes-five-issues-twitter-purge-alex-jones-more-to-come-government-pressure-falling-giants/ http://www.ronpaulinstitute.org/archives/neocon-watch/2018/august/09/five-minutes-five-issues-twitter-purge-alex-jones-more-to-come-government-pressure-falling-giants/ Thu, 09 Aug 2018 18:57:08 GMT
Peter Van Buren: Twitter Suspends Me Forever Peter van Buren http://www.ronpaulinstitute.org/archives/neocon-watch/2018/august/07/peter-van-buren-twitter-suspends-me-forever/

Some readers are aware I have been permanently suspended from Twitter as @wemeantwell.

This followed exchanges with several mainstream journalists over their support for America’s wars and unwillingness to challenge the lies of government. After two days of silence, Twitter sent me an auto-response saying what I wrote “harasses, intimidates, or uses fear to silence someone else’s voice.”

I don’t think I did any of that, and I wish you didn’t have to accept my word on it. I wish instead you could read what I wrote and decide for yourself. But Twitter won’t allow that. Twitter says you cannot read and make up your own mind. They have in fact eliminated all the things I have ever written there over seven years, disappeared me down the Memory Hole. That’s what censorship does; it takes the power to decide what is right and wrong away from you and gives it to someone else.

Hate what I write, hate me, block me, don’t buy my books, but please don’t celebrate handing over those choices to some company.

I lost my career at the State Department because I spoke out as a whistleblower against the Iraq War. I’ve now been silenced, again, for speaking out, this time by a corporation. I am living in the America I always feared.

Reprinted with permission from WeMeantWell.com.]]>
http://www.ronpaulinstitute.org/archives/neocon-watch/2018/august/07/peter-van-buren-twitter-suspends-me-forever/ http://www.ronpaulinstitute.org/archives/neocon-watch/2018/august/07/peter-van-buren-twitter-suspends-me-forever/ Tue, 07 Aug 2018 14:18:18 GMT
Five Minutes Five Issues: Criticizing Media, Bipartisanship, NY Marijuana, Weapons Salesman, Conflicting Votes Adam Dick http://www.ronpaulinstitute.org/archives/neocon-watch/2018/august/05/five-minutes-five-issues-criticizing-media-bipartisanship-ny-marijuana-weapons-salesman-conflicting-votes/ Stitcher, iTunes, YouTube, and SoundCloud.

Listen to the new episode here:



Read a transcript of the new episode, including links to further information regarding the topics discussed, here:

The Ron Paul Institute for Peace and Prosperity welcomes you to Five Minutes Five Issues.

Starting in five four three two one.

Hello, I am Adam Dick, a Ron Paul Institute senior fellow.

Let’s start.

Issue one.

There is much fuss about President Donald Trump saying negative things about the media, including calling much of the media “fake news” and “the enemy of the American people.”

Trump’s criticism of the media reminds me of an astute comment by Thomas Jefferson in an 1807 letter. Jefferson wrote:
… nothing can now be believed which is seen in a newspaper. I really look with commiseration over the great body of my fellow citizens, who, reading newspapers live & die in the belief that they have known something of what has been passing in the world in their time.
Issue two.

Current events writer Glenn Greenwald commented Thursday at Twitter that “the only way to maintain the conceit [that] there is so little bipartisanship in Washington is by steadfastly ignoring the vast key policy areas where the parties unite.”

As an example of such bipartisanship, Greenwald points to the United States Senate having approved the National Defense Authorization Act (NDAA) the day before by a vote of 87 to 10. Passing the expansive bill each year is part of the process of maintaining and increasing the US government’s military spending that far exceeds that of any other nation. The legislation also facilitates US military actions across the world.

Issue three.

In the June 23 episode of Five Minutes Five Issues, I talked about the New York state government potentially legalizing recreational marijuana next year given the announcement that week by state Commissioner of Health Howard Zucker that, after the conclusion of a study requested by New York Governor Andrew Cuomo, Zucker was about to release a report recommending legalizing marijuana.

Here is an update. That report was published on July 13. Then, on Thursday, the governor created a working group that, working with individuals including state legislative leaders and marijuana bill sponsors, is charged with drafting a recreational marijuana legalization bill based on the findings of Zucker’s report. The press release announcing the formation of the working group says the desire is for the state legislature to consider the legalization legislation in its next session.

Issue four.

In last week’s episode of Five Minutes Five Issues, I contrasted the stirring up of fear of Russia and the vast advantage the United States and NATO members have over Russia in terms of military spending and gross domestic product (GDP).

Yet, President Trump insists that NATO governments increase their military spending. Why?

The answer may be found in this phrase: “military-industrial complex.” That is the conclusion of Brian Cloughley in his Friday CounterPunch article “NATO is a Goldmine for the US/Military Industrial Complex.”

In the article, Cloughley quotes Trump saying at a NATO meeting last month that “the United States makes by far the best military equipment in the world: the best jets, the best missiles, the best guns, the best everything” and listing off top US arms makers Lockheed Martin, Boeing, and Northrop Grumman.

Trump sounds like a salesman for American weapons companies in these comments, as he has at other times, such as when Trump, sitting next to Saudi Arabia Crown Prince Mohammed bin Salman at the White House in March, spoke about, while holding up promotional posters, the sale of various US weapons to Saudi Arabia.

Issue five.

On Thursday, Missouri Secretary of State Jay Ashcroft certified that three medical marijuana ballot measures have qualified, through the submission of supporting signatures, to be on the state’s November general election ballot. Tom Angell writes at Marijuana Moment that voters approving multiple medical marijuana ballot measures with conflicting provisions could lead to courts sorting out the effects of the votes.

-----

That’s a wrap.

Transcripts of Five Minutes Five Issues episodes, including links to related information, are at the Ron Paul Institute blog.

Five four three two one.]]>
http://www.ronpaulinstitute.org/archives/neocon-watch/2018/august/05/five-minutes-five-issues-criticizing-media-bipartisanship-ny-marijuana-weapons-salesman-conflicting-votes/ http://www.ronpaulinstitute.org/archives/neocon-watch/2018/august/05/five-minutes-five-issues-criticizing-media-bipartisanship-ny-marijuana-weapons-salesman-conflicting-votes/ Sun, 05 Aug 2018 19:43:27 GMT
TSA Passenger Screening Could Be Eliminated at 150-plus Airports Adam Dick http://www.ronpaulinstitute.org/archives/neocon-watch/2018/august/01/tsa-passenger-screening-could-be-eliminated-at-150-plus-airports/ undefined

It seems that United States government actions taken in the name of “security” become more oppressive each year. This trend can be seen in the activities of the Transportation Security Administration (TSA) that corrals people into checkpoints at airports for harassment, friskings, and warrantless searches of luggage — abuse that worsens over time. For example, last year, TSA friskings were made more invasive with the introduction of a new “universal pat-down” procedure. And, this week, we have the revelation of the TSA’s Quiet Skies that James Bovard, in a new editorial, sums up as a surveillance program “spurring federal air marshals to target dozens of Americans each day on the flimsiest of pretexts.”

Maybe there is some hope for a curtailment of TSA abuses. A Wednesday CNN article by Rene Marsh and Eli Watkins relates that the TSA “is considering eliminating passenger screening at more than 150 small and medium-sized airports across the US, according to senior agency officials and internal documents obtained by CNN.”

Marsh and Watkins write that the change at these airports would affect around 10,000 passengers or “about 0.5 percemt of the people who fly out of US airports on any given day,” though any of them who have a connecting flight at one of the airports retaining a TSA checkpoint would have to endure a “security screening” there. Still, the change would be a good start at improving respect for individual rights.

Read the CNN article here.


]]>
http://www.ronpaulinstitute.org/archives/neocon-watch/2018/august/01/tsa-passenger-screening-could-be-eliminated-at-150-plus-airports/ http://www.ronpaulinstitute.org/archives/neocon-watch/2018/august/01/tsa-passenger-screening-could-be-eliminated-at-150-plus-airports/ Wed, 01 Aug 2018 22:44:46 GMT
Facebook Deletes 32 Pages; Blames Russians RPI Staff http://www.ronpaulinstitute.org/archives/neocon-watch/2018/august/01/facebook-deletes-32-pages-blames-russians/
]]>
http://www.ronpaulinstitute.org/archives/neocon-watch/2018/august/01/facebook-deletes-32-pages-blames-russians/ http://www.ronpaulinstitute.org/archives/neocon-watch/2018/august/01/facebook-deletes-32-pages-blames-russians/ Wed, 01 Aug 2018 14:29:36 GMT
Five Minutes Five Issues: Defending Assange, Gerald Celente, NJ Marijuana, Russia Non-threat, Libertarian Misinfo Adam Dick http://www.ronpaulinstitute.org/archives/neocon-watch/2018/july/29/five-minutes-five-issues-defending-assange-gerald-celente-nj-marijuana-russia-non-threat-libertarian-misinfo/ Stitcher, iTunes, YouTube, and SoundCloud.

Listen to the new episode here:



Read a transcript of the new episode, including links to further information regarding the topics discussed, here:

The Ron Paul Institute for Peace and Prosperity welcomes you to Five Minutes Five Issues.

Starting in five four three two one.

Hello, I am Adam Dick, a Ron Paul Institute senior fellow.

Let’s start.

Issue one.

Glenn Greenwald reported last week at The Intercept that the Ecuador government is planning to hand over Julian Assange to British police soon.

Assange of WikiLeaks has had asylum in Ecuador’s London embassy since 2012, but for the last 17 weeks his situation has been apparently much like solitary confinement in a prison.

A common expectation is that the British government would transfer Assange to the United States government to be imprisoned and prosecuted.

Comments by New York Times Deputy General Counsel David McCraw to judges at the US Ninth Circuit’s annual judicial conference this week provide some hope that much media — even if just for self-preservation — would oppose the US government taking action against Assange. At Courthouse News Service, Maria Dinzeo quotes McCraw:
'think the prosecution of him would be a very, very bad precedent for publishers,' McCraw said. 'From that incident, from everything I know, he’s sort of in a classic publisher’s position and I think the law would have a very hard time drawing a distinction between The New York Times and WikiLeaks.'
Issue two.

The latest addition to the speakers list for the Ron Paul Institute’s August 18 conference is Gerald Celente of the Trends Research Institute. Celente is a strong advocate for peace and a great public speaker. To see a list of conference speakers, buy a conference ticket, and obtain a reduced-price room at the conference hotel, go to the web page ronpaulinstitute.org/conference.

Issue three.

Might the New Jersey state government legalize marijuana by the beginning of September?

New Jersey Governor Phil Murphy campaigned for governor last year promoting his support for legalization, and he has declared that marijuana legalization is one of his priorities this year.

This week, New Jersey Attorney General Gurbir Grewal sent a memorandum to prosecutors in the state asking that “all municipal prosecutors in New Jersey seek an adjournment until September 4, 2018, or later, of any matter involving a marijuana-related offense pending in municipal court” while Grewal prepares a “statewide directive” regarding prosecutorial discretion in marijuana cases.

Claude Brodesser-Akner reports at NJ.com that a source in the state Senate says a marijuana legalization bill is expected to be considered in the Senate by September. The Senate passing that bill combined with the attorney general’s action, writes Brodesser-Akner, could together “effectively end prosecution of marijuana possession in New Jersey permanently.”

Issue four.

From the abundant media coverage of purported danger from Russia, you might suppose that Russia’s economic size and military spending exceed that of the US and NATO allies or are at least similar or close behind.

In an interview this week with host Scott Horton at the Scott Horton Show, economics and politics writer David Stockman puts Russia’s economy and the Russia government’s military spending in some context. Stockman, who is a Ron Paul Institute Advisory Board member, notes that the combined gross domestic product (GDP) of America and the 28 other NATO countries is 26 times bigger than the GDP of Russia. And military spending by the NATO countries is 16 times that of Russia, continues Stockman. Not just that, the US spending of 75 billion dollars a year on its intelligence agencies alone, explains Stockman, “is well more than the entire military budget of Russia, which is 61 billion.”

Such comparisons support Stockman’s conclusion in the interview that “the idea that Russia is a threat to the security of America, or Europe for that matter, is one of the stupidest jokes that has come down the pike in a long time.”

Issue five.

Libertarianism is one of the “right-of-center faiths.” That is a claim made by New York Times opinion columnist Ross Douthat in a Times editorial last week titled “Libertarians in the Age of Trump.” Is this a case of demonstrated ignorance about libertarianism or is this a case of purposeful deception?

-----

That’s a wrap.

Transcripts of Five Minutes Five Issues episodes, including links to related information, are at the Ron Paul Institute blog.

Five four three two one.

]]>
http://www.ronpaulinstitute.org/archives/neocon-watch/2018/july/29/five-minutes-five-issues-defending-assange-gerald-celente-nj-marijuana-russia-non-threat-libertarian-misinfo/ http://www.ronpaulinstitute.org/archives/neocon-watch/2018/july/29/five-minutes-five-issues-defending-assange-gerald-celente-nj-marijuana-russia-non-threat-libertarian-misinfo/ Sun, 29 Jul 2018 19:33:20 GMT
Will Russia 'Meddle' to Help Democrats in November? RPI Staff http://www.ronpaulinstitute.org/archives/neocon-watch/2018/july/25/will-russia-meddle-to-help-democrats-in-november/
]]>
http://www.ronpaulinstitute.org/archives/neocon-watch/2018/july/25/will-russia-meddle-to-help-democrats-in-november/ http://www.ronpaulinstitute.org/archives/neocon-watch/2018/july/25/will-russia-meddle-to-help-democrats-in-november/ Wed, 25 Jul 2018 13:13:58 GMT
Five Minutes Five Issues: Cash, United California, Marijuana Regs, Trump Judges, Intelligence Community Adam Dick http://www.ronpaulinstitute.org/archives/neocon-watch/2018/july/23/five-minutes-five-issues-cash-united-california-marijuana-regs-trump-judges-intelligence-community/ Stitcher, iTunesYouTube, and SoundCloud.

Listen to the new episode here:



Read a transcript of the new episode, including links to further information regarding the topics discussed, here:

The Ron Paul Institute for Peace and Prosperity welcomes you to Five Minutes Five Issues.

Starting in five four three two one.

Hello, I am Adam Dick, a Ron Paul Institute senior fellow.

Let’s start.

Issue one.
The cash system allows for an unmonitored “off the grid” space. This is also the reason why financial institutions and financial technology companies want to get rid of it. Cash transactions are outside the net that such institutions cast to harvest fees and data.
This is an interesting observation in Brett Scott’s Thursday Guardian article “The cashless society is a con – and big finance is behind it.”

Indeed, governments and their allies among businesses are together waging a war on cash, and for some of the same reasons — to access our wealth and to invade our privacy.

Issue two.

In the June 16 episode of Five Minutes Five Issues, I talked about how Californians would vote in November on a ballot measure proposing splitting California into three states. However, this week, a California Supreme Court order prevented the proposition from appearing on the state’s November ballot. The court will proceed in considering a legal challenge that the proposed splitting up of the state exceeds the power Californians can exercise via ballot measures. Depending on how the court ultimately decides the matter, the proposition could be voted on in a future election or be barred from consideration ever by voters.

Issue three.

In the June 30 episode of Five Minutes five Issues, I talked about a medical marijuana ballot measure having been approved that week by Oklahoma voters.

Later, the state’s Board of Health adopted rules for implementing the ballot measure, many of which were clearly not in line with the ballot measure’s mandate.

On Wednesday, Oklahoma Attorney General Mike Hunter sought to put an end to much of the Board of Health’s effort to undermine the approved ballot measure via regulations. Hunter wrote in a letter to the Board of Health’s interim commissioner that the board’s rules to, first, limit and prohibit the sale of edible, smokable, vapable, and other forms of marijuana, and, second, require a licensed pharmacist to be present at least 40 hours a week at each dispensary, lack statutory authority because nowhere in the ballot measure text are such rules expressly or impliedly authorized. In the letter, Hunter also notes there are similar concerns about other rules imposed by the Board of Health, including but not limited to rules restricting the location of dispensaries; prohibiting dispensaries from co-locating with other businesses; requiring medical marijuana to be grown, processed, and dispensed in enclosed structures; requiring a surety bond for licensing; setting hours of operation; and limiting the amount of THC in products for sale or distribution.

Issue four.

Much attention is being paid to President Donald Trump’s nomination of Brett Kavanaugh to the United States Supreme Court and the US Senate’s consideration of that nomination. If the Senate approves the nomination, Kavanaugh will be the second Trump appointee at the court.

Less attention has been paid to Trump’s nominations of individuals to be appellate court judges. John Gramlich notes in a Monday Pew Research Center article that Trump has successfully appointed more appeals court judges than had any presidents going back to Jimmy Carter by this point of their presidencies.

Issue five.

There has been much criticism this week of President Donald Trump expressing some skepticism about the analysis and conclusions of the so-called US intelligence community. On Wednesday, interviewer and writer Scott Horton provided at Twitter some pithy perspective on this criticism. Horton writes:
Get this: back a few years ago the "intelligence community" and the media convinced Americans (you?) that _Saddam Hussein's Iraq_ - which barely had an army, no navy, no airforce, and no alliance with Osama [bin Laden]'s al Qaeda, - was going to attack the USA if we didn't attack them first.
-----

That’s a wrap.

Transcripts of Five Minutes Five Issues episodes, including links to related information, are at the Ron Paul Institute blog.

Five four three two one.]]>
http://www.ronpaulinstitute.org/archives/neocon-watch/2018/july/23/five-minutes-five-issues-cash-united-california-marijuana-regs-trump-judges-intelligence-community/ http://www.ronpaulinstitute.org/archives/neocon-watch/2018/july/23/five-minutes-five-issues-cash-united-california-marijuana-regs-trump-judges-intelligence-community/ Mon, 23 Jul 2018 18:05:11 GMT
John Miska’s Heroic Resistance in Charlottesville, Virginia Adam Dick http://www.ronpaulinstitute.org/archives/congress-alert/2018/august/15/john-miska-s-heroic-resistance-in-charlottesville-virginia/

Reading Rutherford Institute President John W. Whitehead’s Monday editorial “From Boston to Ferguson to Charlottesville: The Evolution of a Police State Lockdown,” I wanted to find out more about an arrest Whitehead mentions took place over the weekend in his hometown of Charlottesville, Virginia. Following a link in Whitehead’s editorial to a Daily Progress article by Allison Wrabel, I found that John Miska, a local individual who was arrested for defying some of the draconian restrictions government imposed in the city last weekend, provides a heroic example of resistance to the police state and martial law conditions about which Whitehead warns in the editorial.

Wrabel’s article describes the situation in which Miska found himself arrested on Saturday. Access to the Charlottesville Downtown Mall was cut off except for two entrances where police at checkpoints inspected people’s bags and confiscated various items banned as potentially dangerous, including “brass knuckles, a razor, a multi-purpose knife and aerosol cans,” though openly carried and legal concealed carry handguns were alright. Writes Wrabel, “[c]ity emergency restrictions banned metal beverage containers, razors and other sharp objects and required that those items purchased from stores on the mall be left in bags.” All this, and more described in Whitehead’s editorial, occurred in the city purportedly because a year earlier some people in protesting groups had engaged in violence against each other in the city, even though there was no indication that such was likely to occur again last weekend.

On Saturday, Miska, described in Wrabel’s article as a veteran who uses a walker, engaged in civil disobedience. He went into a Charlottesville Downtown Mall CVS store and bought prohibited items — two cases of canned iced tea, a razor blade, and bug spray in an aerosol can. Then, when he walked out of the store, Miska was stopped by a state cop. After Miska refused to submit to a search and declined the cop’s offer to escort Miska, along with Miska’s purchased items, directly back to Miska’ car (Miska wanted to eat lunch in the area before returning to his car), Miska was arrested.

Miska acted courageously Saturday in defying the police state. And his comments quoted in Wrabel’s article make clear that he was intentionally engaging in civil disobedience, describing what was happening as “the loss of our constitutional rights here in Charlottesville,” declaring “I’m here going about my lawful occasions and I refuse to be bullied nor have my rights severed because of an illegitimate, illegal edict put forth by the city of Charlottesville,” and proclaiming “If you want to enforce that edict upon me at this time, take me to jail.”

Brave actions like those taken Saturday by Miska must likely be pursued much more often and by many more people if there is to be a reversal soon of the descent into more and more disrespect for our rights in America. May Miska’s example embolden more people to resist the police state that is tightening its grip in our country.]]>
http://www.ronpaulinstitute.org/archives/congress-alert/2018/august/15/john-miska-s-heroic-resistance-in-charlottesville-virginia/ http://www.ronpaulinstitute.org/archives/congress-alert/2018/august/15/john-miska-s-heroic-resistance-in-charlottesville-virginia/ Wed, 15 Aug 2018 17:13:36 GMT
Ron Paul: We Need Alternatives to Social Media Companies that Are Silencing Dissent Adam Dick http://www.ronpaulinstitute.org/archives/congress-alert/2018/august/09/ron-paul-we-need-alternatives-to-social-media-companies-that-are-silencing-dissent/ Alex Jones and Ron Paul Institute Executive Director Daniel McAdams. Paul argues that purges undertaken by social media companies often are motivated by a desire to silence people “challenging the status quo,” instead of the purported reasons social media companies offer related to “terms of service.” He also chides the companies for doing “the work for the NSA,” or the National Security Agency, in conducting mass surveillance.

Paul goes on in the interview to express hope “that technology can stay ahead of it all and that we can have alternatives to the dependency on Twitter and these other companies that have been working hand in glove with the government.”

Watch here the complete interview, in which Paul also extensively discusses United States relations with and sanctions against Iran:

]]>
http://www.ronpaulinstitute.org/archives/congress-alert/2018/august/09/ron-paul-we-need-alternatives-to-social-media-companies-that-are-silencing-dissent/ http://www.ronpaulinstitute.org/archives/congress-alert/2018/august/09/ron-paul-we-need-alternatives-to-social-media-companies-that-are-silencing-dissent/ Thu, 09 Aug 2018 19:09:55 GMT
Five Minutes Five Issues: Twitter Purge, Alex Jones, More to Come, Government Pressure, Falling Giants Adam Dick http://www.ronpaulinstitute.org/archives/congress-alert/2018/august/09/five-minutes-five-issues-twitter-purge-alex-jones-more-to-come-government-pressure-falling-giants/ Stitcher, iTunes, YouTube, and SoundCloud.

Listen to the new episode here:



Read a transcript of the new episode, including links to further information regarding the topics discussed, here:

The Ron Paul Institute for Peace and Prosperity welcomes you to Five Minutes Five Issues.

Starting in five four three two one.

Hello, I am Adam Dick, a Ron Paul Institute senior fellow.

Let’s start.

Issue one.

On Sunday, Twitter took action against three individuals with whom many people who follow Ron Paul Institute activities are familiar. Twitter took down the Twitter page of writer and United States State Department whistle-blower Peter Van Buren. Twitter also barred Scott Horton Show host Scott Horton and Ron Paul Institute Executive Director Daniel McAdams from accessing their Twitter pages to make new posts or to do anything else. Twitter restored McAdams’ access to his Twitter account on Wednesday.

Many of Van Buren’s articles and blog posts and Horton’s interviews have been featured at the RPI website.

McAdams, Horton, and Van Buren seem to be “too dangerous” for Twitter. But, you will be able to continue to find their commentary at the Ron Paul Institute website. Indeed, on Tuesday at RPI’s Ron Paul Liberty Report, McAdams, Horton, and Van Buren discussed Twitter’s actions against them.

Issue two.

This week, several major internet companies, including Facebook, Google’s YouTube, Apple’s iTunes, and Spotify, shut down much or all the content that popular talk show host Alex Jones had at the companies’ websites. Even MailChimp cut off Jones from using its email service.

In a video monologue, Luke Rudowski says what happened to Jones “sets a very dangerous precedent with severe repercussions for both people on the left and the right.” Rudowski further explains: “Now, in short, what ultimately happened today was that a handful of government-connected, powerful, monopoly tech companies decided to purge Alex Jones from their websites — removing them from their platform and deleting all the work that they have done before.”

Rudowski is right. If this can be done to Jones, we should be concerned it will be done to plenty more people.

Issue three.

Powerful people, including in the US government, want things to go much further than major internet companies purging Infowars and other Alex Jones media outlets. For example, consider this Monday Twitter post by US Senator Chris Murphy (D-CT):
Infowars is the tip of a giant iceberg of hate and lies that uses sites like Facebook and YouTube to tear our nation apart. These companies must do more than take down one website. The survival of our democracy depends on it.
Issue four.

A July 30 Axios article by David McCabe suggests the kind of governmental pressure that can be applied to help bring about purges by internet companies. McCabe discusses a 23-page draft “white paper” being circulated by US Senate Intelligence Committee Vice Chairman Mark Warner (D-VA) proclaiming the need for “increased scrutiny” of “tech giants,” including social media companies. The white paper proposes imposing liability on social media companies for users’ posts that the companies do not remove. It also threatens further regulating of social media companies.

The first particular concern discussed in detail in the white paper is “the capacity for communications technologies to promote disinformation that undermines trust in our institutions, democracy, free press and markets.” What Warner’s white paper is really saying here is that dissent that threatens to disrupt the ruling order must be suppressed.

Issue five.

The current internet giants can fall just like Goliath, just like MySpace.

Kim Dotcom challenged the big internet and media companies with his website Megaupload until government action shut it down and turned his life upside-down, including with an ongoing effort to extradite him from New Zealand to America for prosecution and punishment. On Tuesday, Dotcom posted at Twitter a message to some of the big internet companies:
Twitter, Facebook, Google, you betray your users by helping the Deep State to spy on all, you politicize your platforms to manipulate public opinion, you shadowban, censor and attack free speech. Your tech is easy to replace and your users will leave you. Your days are numbered.
I hope Dotcom is right about that.

-----

That’s a wrap.

Transcripts of Five Minutes Five Issues episodes, including links to related information, are at the Ron Paul Institute blog.

Five four three two one.]]>
http://www.ronpaulinstitute.org/archives/congress-alert/2018/august/09/five-minutes-five-issues-twitter-purge-alex-jones-more-to-come-government-pressure-falling-giants/ http://www.ronpaulinstitute.org/archives/congress-alert/2018/august/09/five-minutes-five-issues-twitter-purge-alex-jones-more-to-come-government-pressure-falling-giants/ Thu, 09 Aug 2018 18:57:08 GMT
Peter Van Buren: Twitter Suspends Me Forever Peter van Buren http://www.ronpaulinstitute.org/archives/congress-alert/2018/august/07/peter-van-buren-twitter-suspends-me-forever/

Some readers are aware I have been permanently suspended from Twitter as @wemeantwell.

This followed exchanges with several mainstream journalists over their support for America’s wars and unwillingness to challenge the lies of government. After two days of silence, Twitter sent me an auto-response saying what I wrote “harasses, intimidates, or uses fear to silence someone else’s voice.”

I don’t think I did any of that, and I wish you didn’t have to accept my word on it. I wish instead you could read what I wrote and decide for yourself. But Twitter won’t allow that. Twitter says you cannot read and make up your own mind. They have in fact eliminated all the things I have ever written there over seven years, disappeared me down the Memory Hole. That’s what censorship does; it takes the power to decide what is right and wrong away from you and gives it to someone else.

Hate what I write, hate me, block me, don’t buy my books, but please don’t celebrate handing over those choices to some company.

I lost my career at the State Department because I spoke out as a whistleblower against the Iraq War. I’ve now been silenced, again, for speaking out, this time by a corporation. I am living in the America I always feared.

Reprinted with permission from WeMeantWell.com.]]>
http://www.ronpaulinstitute.org/archives/congress-alert/2018/august/07/peter-van-buren-twitter-suspends-me-forever/ http://www.ronpaulinstitute.org/archives/congress-alert/2018/august/07/peter-van-buren-twitter-suspends-me-forever/ Tue, 07 Aug 2018 14:18:18 GMT
Five Minutes Five Issues: Criticizing Media, Bipartisanship, NY Marijuana, Weapons Salesman, Conflicting Votes Adam Dick http://www.ronpaulinstitute.org/archives/congress-alert/2018/august/05/five-minutes-five-issues-criticizing-media-bipartisanship-ny-marijuana-weapons-salesman-conflicting-votes/ Stitcher, iTunes, YouTube, and SoundCloud.

Listen to the new episode here:



Read a transcript of the new episode, including links to further information regarding the topics discussed, here:

The Ron Paul Institute for Peace and Prosperity welcomes you to Five Minutes Five Issues.

Starting in five four three two one.

Hello, I am Adam Dick, a Ron Paul Institute senior fellow.

Let’s start.

Issue one.

There is much fuss about President Donald Trump saying negative things about the media, including calling much of the media “fake news” and “the enemy of the American people.”

Trump’s criticism of the media reminds me of an astute comment by Thomas Jefferson in an 1807 letter. Jefferson wrote:
… nothing can now be believed which is seen in a newspaper. I really look with commiseration over the great body of my fellow citizens, who, reading newspapers live & die in the belief that they have known something of what has been passing in the world in their time.
Issue two.

Current events writer Glenn Greenwald commented Thursday at Twitter that “the only way to maintain the conceit [that] there is so little bipartisanship in Washington is by steadfastly ignoring the vast key policy areas where the parties unite.”

As an example of such bipartisanship, Greenwald points to the United States Senate having approved the National Defense Authorization Act (NDAA) the day before by a vote of 87 to 10. Passing the expansive bill each year is part of the process of maintaining and increasing the US government’s military spending that far exceeds that of any other nation. The legislation also facilitates US military actions across the world.

Issue three.

In the June 23 episode of Five Minutes Five Issues, I talked about the New York state government potentially legalizing recreational marijuana next year given the announcement that week by state Commissioner of Health Howard Zucker that, after the conclusion of a study requested by New York Governor Andrew Cuomo, Zucker was about to release a report recommending legalizing marijuana.

Here is an update. That report was published on July 13. Then, on Thursday, the governor created a working group that, working with individuals including state legislative leaders and marijuana bill sponsors, is charged with drafting a recreational marijuana legalization bill based on the findings of Zucker’s report. The press release announcing the formation of the working group says the desire is for the state legislature to consider the legalization legislation in its next session.

Issue four.

In last week’s episode of Five Minutes Five Issues, I contrasted the stirring up of fear of Russia and the vast advantage the United States and NATO members have over Russia in terms of military spending and gross domestic product (GDP).

Yet, President Trump insists that NATO governments increase their military spending. Why?

The answer may be found in this phrase: “military-industrial complex.” That is the conclusion of Brian Cloughley in his Friday CounterPunch article “NATO is a Goldmine for the US/Military Industrial Complex.”

In the article, Cloughley quotes Trump saying at a NATO meeting last month that “the United States makes by far the best military equipment in the world: the best jets, the best missiles, the best guns, the best everything” and listing off top US arms makers Lockheed Martin, Boeing, and Northrop Grumman.

Trump sounds like a salesman for American weapons companies in these comments, as he has at other times, such as when Trump, sitting next to Saudi Arabia Crown Prince Mohammed bin Salman at the White House in March, spoke about, while holding up promotional posters, the sale of various US weapons to Saudi Arabia.

Issue five.

On Thursday, Missouri Secretary of State Jay Ashcroft certified that three medical marijuana ballot measures have qualified, through the submission of supporting signatures, to be on the state’s November general election ballot. Tom Angell writes at Marijuana Moment that voters approving multiple medical marijuana ballot measures with conflicting provisions could lead to courts sorting out the effects of the votes.

-----

That’s a wrap.

Transcripts of Five Minutes Five Issues episodes, including links to related information, are at the Ron Paul Institute blog.

Five four three two one.]]>
http://www.ronpaulinstitute.org/archives/congress-alert/2018/august/05/five-minutes-five-issues-criticizing-media-bipartisanship-ny-marijuana-weapons-salesman-conflicting-votes/ http://www.ronpaulinstitute.org/archives/congress-alert/2018/august/05/five-minutes-five-issues-criticizing-media-bipartisanship-ny-marijuana-weapons-salesman-conflicting-votes/ Sun, 05 Aug 2018 19:43:27 GMT
TSA Passenger Screening Could Be Eliminated at 150-plus Airports Adam Dick http://www.ronpaulinstitute.org/archives/congress-alert/2018/august/01/tsa-passenger-screening-could-be-eliminated-at-150-plus-airports/ undefined

It seems that United States government actions taken in the name of “security” become more oppressive each year. This trend can be seen in the activities of the Transportation Security Administration (TSA) that corrals people into checkpoints at airports for harassment, friskings, and warrantless searches of luggage — abuse that worsens over time. For example, last year, TSA friskings were made more invasive with the introduction of a new “universal pat-down” procedure. And, this week, we have the revelation of the TSA’s Quiet Skies that James Bovard, in a new editorial, sums up as a surveillance program “spurring federal air marshals to target dozens of Americans each day on the flimsiest of pretexts.”

Maybe there is some hope for a curtailment of TSA abuses. A Wednesday CNN article by Rene Marsh and Eli Watkins relates that the TSA “is considering eliminating passenger screening at more than 150 small and medium-sized airports across the US, according to senior agency officials and internal documents obtained by CNN.”

Marsh and Watkins write that the change at these airports would affect around 10,000 passengers or “about 0.5 percemt of the people who fly out of US airports on any given day,” though any of them who have a connecting flight at one of the airports retaining a TSA checkpoint would have to endure a “security screening” there. Still, the change would be a good start at improving respect for individual rights.

Read the CNN article here.


]]>
http://www.ronpaulinstitute.org/archives/congress-alert/2018/august/01/tsa-passenger-screening-could-be-eliminated-at-150-plus-airports/ http://www.ronpaulinstitute.org/archives/congress-alert/2018/august/01/tsa-passenger-screening-could-be-eliminated-at-150-plus-airports/ Wed, 01 Aug 2018 22:44:46 GMT
Facebook Deletes 32 Pages; Blames Russians RPI Staff http://www.ronpaulinstitute.org/archives/congress-alert/2018/august/01/facebook-deletes-32-pages-blames-russians/
]]>
http://www.ronpaulinstitute.org/archives/congress-alert/2018/august/01/facebook-deletes-32-pages-blames-russians/ http://www.ronpaulinstitute.org/archives/congress-alert/2018/august/01/facebook-deletes-32-pages-blames-russians/ Wed, 01 Aug 2018 14:29:36 GMT
Five Minutes Five Issues: Defending Assange, Gerald Celente, NJ Marijuana, Russia Non-threat, Libertarian Misinfo Adam Dick http://www.ronpaulinstitute.org/archives/congress-alert/2018/july/29/five-minutes-five-issues-defending-assange-gerald-celente-nj-marijuana-russia-non-threat-libertarian-misinfo/ Stitcher, iTunes, YouTube, and SoundCloud.

Listen to the new episode here:



Read a transcript of the new episode, including links to further information regarding the topics discussed, here:

The Ron Paul Institute for Peace and Prosperity welcomes you to Five Minutes Five Issues.

Starting in five four three two one.

Hello, I am Adam Dick, a Ron Paul Institute senior fellow.

Let’s start.

Issue one.

Glenn Greenwald reported last week at The Intercept that the Ecuador government is planning to hand over Julian Assange to British police soon.

Assange of WikiLeaks has had asylum in Ecuador’s London embassy since 2012, but for the last 17 weeks his situation has been apparently much like solitary confinement in a prison.

A common expectation is that the British government would transfer Assange to the United States government to be imprisoned and prosecuted.

Comments by New York Times Deputy General Counsel David McCraw to judges at the US Ninth Circuit’s annual judicial conference this week provide some hope that much media — even if just for self-preservation — would oppose the US government taking action against Assange. At Courthouse News Service, Maria Dinzeo quotes McCraw:
'think the prosecution of him would be a very, very bad precedent for publishers,' McCraw said. 'From that incident, from everything I know, he’s sort of in a classic publisher’s position and I think the law would have a very hard time drawing a distinction between The New York Times and WikiLeaks.'
Issue two.

The latest addition to the speakers list for the Ron Paul Institute’s August 18 conference is Gerald Celente of the Trends Research Institute. Celente is a strong advocate for peace and a great public speaker. To see a list of conference speakers, buy a conference ticket, and obtain a reduced-price room at the conference hotel, go to the web page ronpaulinstitute.org/conference.

Issue three.

Might the New Jersey state government legalize marijuana by the beginning of September?

New Jersey Governor Phil Murphy campaigned for governor last year promoting his support for legalization, and he has declared that marijuana legalization is one of his priorities this year.

This week, New Jersey Attorney General Gurbir Grewal sent a memorandum to prosecutors in the state asking that “all municipal prosecutors in New Jersey seek an adjournment until September 4, 2018, or later, of any matter involving a marijuana-related offense pending in municipal court” while Grewal prepares a “statewide directive” regarding prosecutorial discretion in marijuana cases.

Claude Brodesser-Akner reports at NJ.com that a source in the state Senate says a marijuana legalization bill is expected to be considered in the Senate by September. The Senate passing that bill combined with the attorney general’s action, writes Brodesser-Akner, could together “effectively end prosecution of marijuana possession in New Jersey permanently.”

Issue four.

From the abundant media coverage of purported danger from Russia, you might suppose that Russia’s economic size and military spending exceed that of the US and NATO allies or are at least similar or close behind.

In an interview this week with host Scott Horton at the Scott Horton Show, economics and politics writer David Stockman puts Russia’s economy and the Russia government’s military spending in some context. Stockman, who is a Ron Paul Institute Advisory Board member, notes that the combined gross domestic product (GDP) of America and the 28 other NATO countries is 26 times bigger than the GDP of Russia. And military spending by the NATO countries is 16 times that of Russia, continues Stockman. Not just that, the US spending of 75 billion dollars a year on its intelligence agencies alone, explains Stockman, “is well more than the entire military budget of Russia, which is 61 billion.”

Such comparisons support Stockman’s conclusion in the interview that “the idea that Russia is a threat to the security of America, or Europe for that matter, is one of the stupidest jokes that has come down the pike in a long time.”

Issue five.

Libertarianism is one of the “right-of-center faiths.” That is a claim made by New York Times opinion columnist Ross Douthat in a Times editorial last week titled “Libertarians in the Age of Trump.” Is this a case of demonstrated ignorance about libertarianism or is this a case of purposeful deception?

-----

That’s a wrap.

Transcripts of Five Minutes Five Issues episodes, including links to related information, are at the Ron Paul Institute blog.

Five four three two one.

]]>
http://www.ronpaulinstitute.org/archives/congress-alert/2018/july/29/five-minutes-five-issues-defending-assange-gerald-celente-nj-marijuana-russia-non-threat-libertarian-misinfo/ http://www.ronpaulinstitute.org/archives/congress-alert/2018/july/29/five-minutes-five-issues-defending-assange-gerald-celente-nj-marijuana-russia-non-threat-libertarian-misinfo/ Sun, 29 Jul 2018 19:33:20 GMT
Will Russia 'Meddle' to Help Democrats in November? RPI Staff http://www.ronpaulinstitute.org/archives/congress-alert/2018/july/25/will-russia-meddle-to-help-democrats-in-november/
]]>
http://www.ronpaulinstitute.org/archives/congress-alert/2018/july/25/will-russia-meddle-to-help-democrats-in-november/ http://www.ronpaulinstitute.org/archives/congress-alert/2018/july/25/will-russia-meddle-to-help-democrats-in-november/ Wed, 25 Jul 2018 13:13:58 GMT
Five Minutes Five Issues: Cash, United California, Marijuana Regs, Trump Judges, Intelligence Community Adam Dick http://www.ronpaulinstitute.org/archives/congress-alert/2018/july/23/five-minutes-five-issues-cash-united-california-marijuana-regs-trump-judges-intelligence-community/ Stitcher, iTunesYouTube, and SoundCloud.

Listen to the new episode here:



Read a transcript of the new episode, including links to further information regarding the topics discussed, here:

The Ron Paul Institute for Peace and Prosperity welcomes you to Five Minutes Five Issues.

Starting in five four three two one.

Hello, I am Adam Dick, a Ron Paul Institute senior fellow.

Let’s start.

Issue one.
The cash system allows for an unmonitored “off the grid” space. This is also the reason why financial institutions and financial technology companies want to get rid of it. Cash transactions are outside the net that such institutions cast to harvest fees and data.
This is an interesting observation in Brett Scott’s Thursday Guardian article “The cashless society is a con – and big finance is behind it.”

Indeed, governments and their allies among businesses are together waging a war on cash, and for some of the same reasons — to access our wealth and to invade our privacy.

Issue two.

In the June 16 episode of Five Minutes Five Issues, I talked about how Californians would vote in November on a ballot measure proposing splitting California into three states. However, this week, a California Supreme Court order prevented the proposition from appearing on the state’s November ballot. The court will proceed in considering a legal challenge that the proposed splitting up of the state exceeds the power Californians can exercise via ballot measures. Depending on how the court ultimately decides the matter, the proposition could be voted on in a future election or be barred from consideration ever by voters.

Issue three.

In the June 30 episode of Five Minutes five Issues, I talked about a medical marijuana ballot measure having been approved that week by Oklahoma voters.

Later, the state’s Board of Health adopted rules for implementing the ballot measure, many of which were clearly not in line with the ballot measure’s mandate.

On Wednesday, Oklahoma Attorney General Mike Hunter sought to put an end to much of the Board of Health’s effort to undermine the approved ballot measure via regulations. Hunter wrote in a letter to the Board of Health’s interim commissioner that the board’s rules to, first, limit and prohibit the sale of edible, smokable, vapable, and other forms of marijuana, and, second, require a licensed pharmacist to be present at least 40 hours a week at each dispensary, lack statutory authority because nowhere in the ballot measure text are such rules expressly or impliedly authorized. In the letter, Hunter also notes there are similar concerns about other rules imposed by the Board of Health, including but not limited to rules restricting the location of dispensaries; prohibiting dispensaries from co-locating with other businesses; requiring medical marijuana to be grown, processed, and dispensed in enclosed structures; requiring a surety bond for licensing; setting hours of operation; and limiting the amount of THC in products for sale or distribution.

Issue four.

Much attention is being paid to President Donald Trump’s nomination of Brett Kavanaugh to the United States Supreme Court and the US Senate’s consideration of that nomination. If the Senate approves the nomination, Kavanaugh will be the second Trump appointee at the court.

Less attention has been paid to Trump’s nominations of individuals to be appellate court judges. John Gramlich notes in a Monday Pew Research Center article that Trump has successfully appointed more appeals court judges than had any presidents going back to Jimmy Carter by this point of their presidencies.

Issue five.

There has been much criticism this week of President Donald Trump expressing some skepticism about the analysis and conclusions of the so-called US intelligence community. On Wednesday, interviewer and writer Scott Horton provided at Twitter some pithy perspective on this criticism. Horton writes:
Get this: back a few years ago the "intelligence community" and the media convinced Americans (you?) that _Saddam Hussein's Iraq_ - which barely had an army, no navy, no airforce, and no alliance with Osama [bin Laden]'s al Qaeda, - was going to attack the USA if we didn't attack them first.
-----

That’s a wrap.

Transcripts of Five Minutes Five Issues episodes, including links to related information, are at the Ron Paul Institute blog.

Five four three two one.]]>
http://www.ronpaulinstitute.org/archives/congress-alert/2018/july/23/five-minutes-five-issues-cash-united-california-marijuana-regs-trump-judges-intelligence-community/ http://www.ronpaulinstitute.org/archives/congress-alert/2018/july/23/five-minutes-five-issues-cash-united-california-marijuana-regs-trump-judges-intelligence-community/ Mon, 23 Jul 2018 18:05:11 GMT