Reason Roundup

The U.S. Government Spent Billions Failing To Defend Its Own Agencies From Cyberattacks

Plus: Google gets hit with another antitrust lawsuit, the U.S. falls in a new ranking of human freedom, and more...

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As if this year wasn't apocalyptic enough already, over a dozen federal agencies—including the one that manages all our nukes—had their internal networks compromised in what's being described as the "worst ever" hack of the U.S. government.

On Thursday, Politico reported that the U.S. Department of Energy and the National Nuclear Security Administration (NNSA), which it oversees, both discovered evidence that hackers had accessed their networks. They're only the latest agencies to fall prey to hackers, who've also managed to infiltrate the State Department, Department of Homeland Security, and parts of the Pentagon.

The revelation of this massive cyberattack came last week when cybersecurity firm FireEye announced that its own systems had been breached.

The company's internal investigation pinpointed a vulnerability in the software they'd purchased from Texas-based technology company SolarWinds. Hackers had reportedly inserted a backdoor into SolarWinds' Orion network management software. That corrupted software was then pushed out via an update to some 18,000 of the company's clients, including numerous corporations and government entities.

FireEye's discovery set off a government investigation that has produced a growing list of agencies and departments that have also been infiltrated by the hack. The initial hack of SolarWinds reportedly happened between March and June, meaning that cyberattackers have likely had access to government networks for months now.

Thomas P. Bossert, a national security adviser to President Donald Trump, said in The New York Times that this kind of "supply chain attack" is typically the work of state actors, and suggested that the Russian government was responsible.

The Washington Post, relying on "people familiar with the matter," reported on Monday that the Russian hackers associated with the country's foreign intelligence service were behind the attack.

Democratic politicians have been quick to echo this line.

"This is virtually a declaration of war by Russia on the United States and we should take that seriously," said Sen. Dick Durbin (D–Ill.) on Wednesday. Sen. Richard Blumenthal (D–Conn.) said on Twitter that "today's classified briefing on Russia's cyberattack left me deeply alarmed, in fact downright scared. Americans deserve to know what's going on. Declassify what's known & unknown."

Patrick G. Eddington, a research fellow in homeland security and civil liberties at the Cato Institute, noted that Blumenthal and his fellow senators have the power to make all of this public if they wanted to.

The State Department has yet to publicly pin the blame on the Kremlin. Journalist Glenn Greenwald also noted that no proof of Russia's involvement has been made public as of yet.

Regardless of who's responsible, this hack has exposed some embarrassing security vulnerabilities for both SolarWinds, and particularly the U.S. government.

In the former's case, one security researcher told Reuters that he'd discovered last year that the company's update server was secured with the password "solarwinds123." The company did not have a chief information security officer either, reports The New York Times.

The Times also noted in a Wednesday article that despite the billions the federal government has spent upgrading and reorganizing its cybersecurity capabilities, it was unable to prevent or even initially detect this massive hack of government computer systems. It had to be alerted by the private sector.

One option policy makers should consider is just abolishing the Departments of Energy, Commerce, Homeland Security, and other compromised agencies we can make do without. An agency can't be hacked if it doesn't exist.


FREE MARKETS

On Thursday, 38 state attorneys general filed an antitrust lawsuit against Google, arguing that it had used uncompetitive practices to maintain a monopoly on internet searches. The Wall Street Journal has the details:

The states alleged that Google leverages its position as the dominant search engine—and the personal data such a perch allows the company to gather—to limit consumers from using competing search engines, force businesses to use its proprietary advertising tools and foreclose competition from specialized search engines for travel or local businesses.

This lawsuit comes a couple of months after the U.S. Department of Justice filed a similar antitrust suit against the search engine giant. How successful these efforts will be remains to be seen. Past federal investigations of Google's supposed monopoly power have come to nothing.


FREE MINDS

The Cato and Fraser Institutes have released the latest version of their Human Freedom Index, which ranks countries around the world based on how free their populations are, as measured by a range of indicators that "encompasses personal, civil, and economic freedom."

The report, which relies on data from 2018, once again gave top marks to New Zealand, Hong Kong, and Switzerland as the freest countries in the world. The U.S. was ranked 17th, down from 15th last year.


QUICK HITS

  • Perhaps the real victims of COVID-19 are the government officials not getting enough credit for the vaccines developed by private companies.
  • Southern California ICU capacity is officially at 0 percent.
  • The Boston Landmarks Commission would like the public's input on whether property owners should be allowed to demolish this potentially historic garage.

  • Los Angeles County is appealing a ruling from earlier this month that has stopped it from imposing a ban on outdoor dining.
  • Vaccinating the elderly first, rather than essential workers, will save more lives according to a model from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC).

 

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  1. …over a dozen federal agencies—including the one that manages all our nukes—had their internal networks compromised in what’s being described as the “worst ever” hack of the U.S. government.

    Did they learn nothing from that Angelina Jolie movie? It’s been DECADES.

    1. No voting machines were harmed during this hack.

      1. Real talk here: I wouldn’t trust any election system that wasn’t air gapped.

        1. I think the opposite. You want one that is completely transparent that anyone can look at. Secure all votes with cryptographic hashes and store the entire chain of custody of that vote from the machine to the eventual tabulation system. At the end you have a system that says “Voter 123 issued this ballot, and here is their public key and signature”. Anyone who wants to can verify the signature with the public key. Anyone can download the entire voter list and replay it at any time.

          1. Open source software. If any member of the public can’t inspect it, then it can’t be trusted.

            1. Definitely true. But that is secondary to the data being public. If the data isn’t public, you have no idea if the open source software was actually used to tabulate the votes.

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          2. Best part: if there’s a 51% attack, that’s democracy!

          3. In person voting. By ballot, with a photo identification card.

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        2. Even then I wouldn’t trust it. Just look a the security holes in the ballot counting machines up in Antrim County Michigan. The lessons here are:

          1) Don’t network your voting machines.
          2) Allow poll watchers to review the entire election process.
          3) Maintain an auditable paper trail for all ballots, including mail-ins.

          1. WTF, let’s make the actual casting of a ballot public. Recent research (seriously) shows that most Americans vote primarily as a signaling behavior, so eliminating the secret ballot will just make them happier.

            Also could be fun to see how spouses of candidates vote.

            1. You don’t need that. You can be pseudonymous. You have a unique ID, and if you want to post your vote online, you can. Otherwise, you remain anonymous.

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            2. Democrats used to threaten Americans to vote a certain way, so we have to keep actual votes secret.

              Democrats used to threaten people to vote a certain way, so only the voter is allowed in the polling booth.

              …. Always corrupt Democrats….

        3. You apparently haven’t seen the recent article whereby the electromagnetic signals put out by a computers RAM can be made to work as a weak WiFi signal and even air-gapped computers are not safe from being remotely hacked.

            1. While interesting, these all seem wildly impractical, especially at scale. Am I missing something?

              1. You’re not. Those things are interesting in theory, but in a room full of people with god knows how many cell phones and other radios being noisy as fuck it’s almost definitely useless in the real world.

                It might work in spooky government places where there’s little radio interference though.

              2. they are actually fairly easy to protect from outside signals, Faraday cage or some such they actually make sheetrock with it to prevent cell phone signals and such for quit rooms. thought about doing it to my garage to protect the cars electronics from Nuclear EMF event which many say will happen any day now and may happen form a solar flair

        4. For any computers networked together, you have to assume they have already been hacked by the Cylons.

          1. ^

            When Skynet finally comes online, it won’t destroy us because it thinks we’re the enemy. It’ll destroy us because it see doing so as a mercy kill. If I’m an all powerfull AI right now, I’ve gotta see all these stupid humans and think, what a waste. Especially if it’s pulling in data from Twitter and FB.

    2. Hello.

      Human freedom index?

      Now they’re just gaslighting.

      Rrrrright. We’re free in the West. Rrrrrright.

      Anyone notice the most retarded and restrictive countries have been 20 or nations in the West? The so-called ‘advanced and free’ countries with the rule of law.

      1. The report relies on data from 2018

        Check back in 2 years.

    3. Obviously they should have spent even more of our money failing to protect themselves.

    4. If only more government bureaucrats looked like Jolie.

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    9. A very good and valid reason for government officials to use their own private server….

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  2. RESIST!
    Not my president
    #NeverBiden
    Impeach!

    1. Lets see how bad unreason Commies screech about this!

      SCOTUS Throws Out Challenge to President Trump’s Bid to Exclude Illegal Aliens from Being Counted in Determining Congressional Seats

      Commifornia is really gonna lose some House seats now!
      -4 maybe

      1. HAHA. Nothing from unreason in hours since this SCOTUS order was released.

    2. I’m starting to like this bit

  3. Your new besties Reason. Fuck off and die.

    https://twitter.com/JCompson_III/status/1339814373121011712

    Wow. In the
    @nytimes
    , a doctor explains why the CDC chose to de-emphasize the elderly, even though doing so would’ve saved lives:

    “Older populations are whiter…Instead of giving add’l health benefits to those who already had them, we can start to level the playing field a bit”

    1. Later in the piece another doctor, named Marc Lipsitch, explains that teachers should not be considered essential workers for the purpose of being given priority vaccines by the CDC because, and I quote, “they are often very white.”

      …A third expert, an economist named Elise Gould, counters Dr. Lipsitch that teachers *should* be prioritized. Why? Because the families they teach are disproportionately “Black and Brown”, and those groups would benefit more than white people.

    2. The beginnings of Sarah Palin’s death panels.

      1. Sᴛᴀʀᴛ ᴡᴏʀᴋɪɴɢ ғʀᴏᴍ ʜᴏᴍᴇ! Gʀᴇᴀᴛ ᴊᴏʙ ғᴏʀ sᴛᴜᴅᴇɴᴛs, sᴛᴀʏ-ᴀᴛ-ʜᴏᴍᴇ ᴍᴏᴍs ᴏʀ ᴀɴʏᴏɴᴇ ɴᴇᴇᴅɪɴɢ ᴀɴ ᴇxᴛʀᴀ ɪɴᴄᴏᴍᴇ… Yᴏᴜ ᴏɴʟʏ ɴᴇᴇᴅ ᴀ ᴄᴏᴍᴘᴜᴛᴇʀ ᴀɴᴅ ᴀ ʀᴇʟɪᴀʙʟᴇ ɪɴᴛᴇʀɴᴇᴛ ᴄᴏɴɴᴇᴄᴛɪᴏɴ…CMs Mᴀᴋᴇ $80 ʜᴏᴜʀʟʏ ᴀɴᴅ ᴜᴘ ᴛᴏ $13000 ᴀ ᴍᴏɴᴛʜ ʙʏ ғᴏʟʟᴏᴡɪɴɢ ʟɪɴᴋ ᴀᴛ ᴛʜᴇ ʙᴏᴛᴛᴏᴍ ᴀɴᴅ sɪɢɴɪɴɢ ᴜᴘ..Yᴏᴜ ᴄᴀɴ ʜᴀᴠᴇ ʏᴏᴜʀ ғɪʀsᴛ ᴄʜᴇᴄᴋ ʙʏ ᴛʜᴇ ᴇɴᴅ ᴏғ ᴛʜɪs ᴡᴇᴇᴋ……….. Home Profit System

    3. “If it saves even one life, we’re obligated to try… unless it’s the wrong life.”

    4. Real reparations.

    5. That was an amazing piece from the NYT. 3 experts. All analyzed how their is formed based on race.

    6. Why did you ignore the bits in the Times article that point out that those three doctors are not part of the CDC, but rather are on an independent advisory committee?

      And that the independent committee (which has other members) has yet to vote on a recommendation to pass along to the CDC?

      AND that the actual CDC has no obligation to accept the not-yet-made recommendation?

      AND the CDC director’s quote that he “looked forward to ‘future recommendations that, based on vaccine availability, demonstrate that we as a nation also prioritize the elderly'”?

      Kinda makes you look dishonest.

      1. It really doesn’t, it actually makes you look like a woketard praying no one notices your racism.

    7. Why not start with health care workers over 50?

    8. As said elsewhere, welcome to Medicare For All, suckers.

  4. On Thursday, 38 state attorneys general filed an antitrust lawsuit against Google…

    Governor’s mansions, here they come!

    1. yeah, because no one can go to Bing and search in the Microsoft browser….

  5. Your new besties, Reason: The Party Of Science.

    Fuck off and die.

    New England Journal of Medicine comes out against harmful sex designations on birth certificates
    https://twitchy.com/brettt-3136/2020/12/17/new-england-journal-of-medicine-comes-out-against-harmful-sex-designations-on-birth-certificates/

    1. Honestly I don’t see any benefit to having sex listed on your birth certificate. The government and various researchers wants it there for data analysis reasons, I’m sure, but removing it isn’t going to affect your life in any discernable way.

      1. Social security numbers are racist and sexist.

        1. So is work and paying for shit.

        2. social security numbers are bad just not in that way.

    2. We should also get rid of date of birth, and birth parents name and address, and location of birth. The birth cirtificate should just be a name.

      1. You mean a DEADNAME?!!
        How DARE you?!!

      2. asking for parents’ names discriminates against clones and engineered humans

      3. Birth certs are more an idea really…

    3. So your sex designation is harmful the Truth and real science is now harmful. what other truths should we hide because we don’t like it, how about voting fraud

  6. Perhaps the real victims of COVID-19 are the government officials not getting enough credit for the vaccines developed by private companies.

    Maybe that will translate into not getting any of the blame if things go awry.

    1. Sleepy Joe will solve this problem.

      1. His 100 day vaccine distribution plan that delivers slightly less doses than the current plan already in place shows us how great a president elect he is already.

    2. I think that’s a typo that slipped by the eagle eyed editors. My guess is “getting” should be “giving”.

  7. Your new besties, Reason. Fuck off and die.

    Hunter Biden associate texts hint at push to ‘get Joe involved,’ make it look like ‘truly family business’
    https://www.foxnews.com/politics/hunter-biden-ex-associate-get-joe-involved-family-business

    Hunter Biden’s former business associates were hinting at a push to “get Joe involved” in a joint venture with Chinese Energy Company CEFC and make the venture appear as a “truly family business” to the Chinese, according to text messages obtained and reviewed by Fox News.

    In text messages dating back to 2017, Hunter’s now-ex-associates James Gilliar and Tony Bobulinski discussed a breakdown of the joint venture with CEFC, the “stakes” and appeared to hint at discussions about getting the now-president-elect involved.

    In a back-and-forth over the terms of the company, Gilliar, in a May 11, 2017 text message to Bobulinski, wrote: “Man U are right let’s get the company set up, then tell H and family the high stakes and get Joe involved.”

    1. I have it on good authority from DoL that hunters issues are fake but trump russia is still more real than Bush bringing down the towers.

      1. Joe Biden basically thru Hunter under the bus yesterday saying he’s and adult and can deal with his issues.

  8. Reason’s new besties

    https://twitter.com/ggreenwald/status/1339641132108668928

    Look at what an absolute joke this Facebook/Instagram “fact-checking” is — to protect Biden.

    On the left: Instagram denouncing a random user for “disinformation”

    On the right: Cory Booker making the same point.

    Pleading with Silicon Valley to regulate our discourse is lunacy:

    1. Sleepy Joe will solve this problem.

      1. https://twitter.com/TheAtlantic/status/1339797205188751360

        Facebook has rolled back a post-election algorithm shift that favored authoritative news outlets. “The cycle of harm perpetuated by Facebook’s scale-at-any-cost business model is plain to see,” writes
        @AdrienneLaF
        .

      2. Actually, the problem was solved for Sleepy Joe.

    2. Greenwald appears to be far more libertarian than Reason writers and editors have become, and Greenwald has never claimed to be libertarian.

      1. He’s a liberal, which traditionally would overlap heavily with libertarians in some areas, but he would also argue in favor of government run health care and stuff like that, so he’s no libertarian.

        1. He is a classical liberal for the most part who still thinks welfare lite systems could be proprietary executed, his one weak spot.

        2. That’s the point

        3. “he’s no libertarian”
          Unfortunately, he’s still more libertarian than the Reasonistas.

        4. Taibbi and Greenwald have basically become Orwell at this point–dedicated socialists who find radical left-wing progressivism to be intellectually retarded.

  9. Reason’s new besties:

    https://twitter.com/therecount/status/1339654998502850566

    Biden will nominate Rep. Deb Haaland (D-NM) as Secretary of the Interior. If confirmed, she would:

    • Be the first Native American to hold the Cabinet position
    • Manage 1/5th of the land in the U.S., including tribal lands

    1. A tear will run down her cheek.

    2. She ca be native, she doesn’t look like Elizabeth Warren at all.

    3. There’s literally nothing in Halland’s resume that qualifies her for Secretary of the Interior other than the fact that she’s a redskin.

  10. Southern California ICU capacity is officially at 0 percent.

    Fuckin’ outdoor diners.

    1. There are so many COVID cases in the ICU, they should just shut them down.

      1. Duh, turn LA restaurants into ICUs. Do I have to think of everything?

    2. And percent that is covid caused?

    3. Once ICU beds are full, hospitals go into surge mode, which can accommodate 20% over usual capacity.

      Surge mode allows them to accommodate 20% more of their 0% capacity.

  11. Nurse faints at press conference after getting COVID-19 vaccine
    https://www.washingtontimes.com/news/2020/dec/17/nurse-faints-after-getting-covid-vaccine/

    1. https://twitter.com/TRHLofficial/status/1339933618253271040?s=19

      So they suspended the account who shared the nurse fainting

      1. But muh private companize!!!!

    2. Nobody ever did that before.

      1. The issue isn’t her fainting. It’s that twitter tried to cover it up.

        1. The people can’t be trusted to understand that it’s a small deal… So they can’t know about it.

          It’s for the greater good.

    3. Another date rape drug?

    4. so some people are afraid of needles. usually not nurses though.

      1. Some people are also pretty overworked these days

  12. The Boston Landmarks Commission would like the public’s input on whether property owners should be allowed to demolish this potentially historic garage.

    No suh!

    1. We can never tear down old buildings anymore. They all have history now.

    2. it must be maintained forever, with appropriate signage to explain how evil the people who built it were

  13. Vaccinating the elderly first, rather than essential workers, will save more lives according to a model from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC).

    Someone at the CDC realized that beta testing is done on the expendable.

    1. Watch out, Stallone and his old buddies will be after your ass.

      1. considering Stallone is elderly and held together with steroids

  14. https://twitter.com/TomFitton/status/1339925633296568320?s=19

    ICYMI, Comey FBI knew McCain leaked the anti-@RealDonaldTrump dossier. @JudicialWatch uncovered this last year.

    1. McCain really pooped on his own legacy, didn’t he.

      1. Seems like ol’ Cindy McCain was really running the show the last decade.

    2. The whole world knew but judges are blind deaf and dumb apparently to believe what the FBI was feeding them

  15. The report, which relies on data from 2018, once again gave top marks to New Zealand…

    Yeah, that’s not dated at all.

    1. Wait, when was 2018?

        1. It has always been March, 2020

  16. I’ll be too busy today to comment on his daily screed, so fuck offf Jacob Sullum.

    https://twitter.com/Cernovich/status/1339794444573282304

    Media knew Trump was going to win. So they seeded a narrative about election hacking.

    HBO did an entire documentary on *Georgia*.

    CNN went hard with the hacking narrative.

    But then Biden won more votes than Obama in his prime, so this narrative wasn’t needed.

  17. “The report, which relies on data from 2018, once again gave top marks to New Zealand…”

    I swear. 2020. I think I’m gonna self-lobotomize.

    1. Don’t. You might slip, and they will count that as another COVID death.

  18. https://twitter.com/ChefGruel/status/1339738046292320258?s=19

    Fascinating insight into the mind of an elitist. In a previous message she let me know she has enough money to live for years without working.

  19. https://twitter.com/JackPosobiec/status/1339757571545153537?s=19

    If only there were a word for a coalition or cooperative arrangement between companies like Facebook and Google intended to restrict competition

  20. https://twitter.com/KanekoaTheGreat/status/1339812216103522304?s=19

    ZUCKERBERG’S ELECTION

    1/ Funded by $350 Million from Facebook founder Mark Zuckerberg, activist organizations created a two-tiered election system that treated voters differently depending on whether they lived in Democrat or Republican strongholds.????
    Image
    2/ Mark Zuckerberg was invited into the counting room, and the American people were kicked out. Zuckerberg-CTCL funds allowed these Democrat strongholds to spend roughly $47 per voter, compared to $4 to $7 per voter in traditionally Republican areas of the state.????
    Image
    3/ In Michigan, $5,939,235 was awarded to jurisdictions where Clinton won & $402,878 where Trump won.

    In Pennsylvania, $13,063,828 for Clinton and $692,742 for Trump.

    CTCL hidden COVID-19 grant agenda was to increase the votes for Democratic presidential candidate Joe Biden.????
    Image
    4/ Zuckerberg money & money from other “leftist” organizations totaled $500M, while the Federal Government only appropriated $400M for the 2020 election. This effectively created a “two-tiered election system” and a “shadow government” running our elections.????
    5/ WISCONSIN????

    The “Wisconsin Safe Election Plan” was not authored by the state. Effectively, CTCL managed the election in these five cities.

    •Promote no voter ID “indefinitely confined”
    •Drop Boxes breaching chain of custody
    •Consolidating counting centers????
    Image
    Image
    6/ MICHIGAN????

    Election officials hired & trained by CTCL failed to provide meaningful bi-partisan observation. They gave direct access of state voter files to “leftist” groups like ‘Rock The Vote’. Thousands of ballots were cured without oversight from bipartisan observers.????
    Image
    Image
    6/ PENNSYLVANIA????

    CTCL paid election judges & election officials in Philadelphia mandated polling places & drop boxes.

    In Democrat Delaware County, there was 1 drop box every 4 square miles.

    In 59 Republican counties, there was 1 drop box every 1,100 square miles.????
    Image
    Image
    7/ GEORGIA????

    Fulton County allowed private access directly to government voter registration files & access to early voting opportunities.

    CTCL-funded counties had drop boxes every 14 square miles while unfunded counties had drop boxes every 294 square miles.????
    Image
    Image
    8/ DROP BOXES????

    Zuckerberg-money initiated the use of drop boxes for ballot collection, significantly breaching the chain of custody & failing to maintain proper logs to ensure all properly cast ballots were counted & all improperly cast ballots were not counted.????
    9/ ZUCKERBERG’S ELECTION????

    Zuckerberg’s charity, CTCL, paid for election judges, purchased the drop boxes, ordered the consolidation of the counting facilities, paid the election officials that boarded up the windows, & dictated the policies that undermined state law.????
    10/ Americans know there was election fraud. Americans saw Zuckerberg’s “sporting arena election centers” with observers using binoculars anywhere from 10ft to 200ft away from the ballots. Election officials even admitted that they violated state laws in contested states.????
    11/ AMISTAD PROJECT????

    Mahalo to @PhillDKline for fighting for election integrity as a private citizen and compiling this report on how private funds enabled election fraud in several key states.????

    Zuckerberg Election Meddling Exposed
    Zuckerberg Election Meddling Exposed PRESS CONFERENCE LIVE FEED WATCH

    12/ Further reading on how CTCL (founded by a former fellow of the Obama Foundation) created a two-tiered election system. Impartial election officials are supposed to work for the people, but in the 2020 election, they were on Zuckerberg’s payroll

    1. Everyone should watch the video from Amistad project. Its long and the guys are nerds more than public speakers but their evidence is spot on and damning. It’s also fully public info.

  21. One option policy makers should consider is just abolishing the Departments of Energy, Commerce, Homeland Security, and other compromised agencies we can make do without. An agency can’t be hacked if it doesn’t exist.

    Well just look at the token libertarian, bringing the ideological diversity.

    1. Ideological diversity is racist. Racial diversity is ideological.

    1. You’re boring people skreech

      1. He knows he’s wrong by now, but he figures in for a penny, in for a pound.

    2. Wonder why Flynn would be bitter. You sat back and gave no cares to the abusive prosecution.

      1. Is this yet another case where because I didn’t say anything you’re going to read my mind and tell me what I really think?

        1. Don’t have to. You pipe up constantly when leftists are getting dragged but this one you stay silent.

          You play at being anti-cop and anti-malicious-prosecution, but you completely vanished when it was happening to this guy.

          Which was better for everyone, honestly.

    3. you know what else isn’t unprecedented?

    4. Republicans finally catching up to Democrat tactics circa 2004.

  22. https://twitter.com/adamhousley/status/1339793311519797248?s=19

    I’m being told that just up until now…mid December…the fraud in California unemployment (EDD) is gonna approach 10 Billion dollars. That’s money from paychecks, business owners, federal relief and state money…all…gone.

    1. Not gone. It’s in the hands of unscrupulous people who will spend it quickly to boost the economy. You have to think about this kind of thing like an economist.

      1. Economies of Nigeria and the Philippines.

        1. “couple times a month”

  23. For those of you confused about the state of the stimulus bill, it’s no wonder. The coverage, nationally, has been terrible. Briefly, the questions of how big the stimulus bill is and what the bill pays for have largely been answered. The outstanding issue is how to pay for it.

    There is presently about $450 billion that Congress authorized for small businesses and such back in the Cares Act–and that money remains unspent. There were so many restrictions and high rates put on that money that businesses that needed a loan were able to get a better deal from private lenders, so that authorized spending is just sitting there at the Fed unspent, and the authorization to spend it is due to expire on December 31st, 2020, when Trump’s Treasury secretary is expected to order those funds back to the treasury.

    In short, the Republicans want to use that money for the stimulus bill, so that the $900 billion stimulus bill would only cost the taxpayers $450 billion in new spending. They are insisting on including language in the new stimulus bill that stipulates specifically that if the roughly $450 billion in unused funds from the previous Cares act is unspent by December 31st, it goes to the new stimulus bill or it goes back to the treasury and pays down debt.

    The Democrats are screaming bloody murder over this. They’re saying that Biden needs to be able to use those already authorized funds for coronavirus relief for businesses and such, and, in fact, they appear to be trying to use that roughly $450 billion to repurpose those funds so that $450 billion can be used to bail out state and local government. They were expecting Biden to authorize those funds to be used by way of an executive order–much like Obama used TARP money intended for home lenders and borrowers to bail out and take over General Motors.

    So, when you read coverage of the stimulus talks with headlines like this:

    “Relief bill could slam door on Biden’s ability to extend emergency economic support”

    https://www.politico.com/news/2020/12/17/relief-bill-biden-extend-emergency-economic-support-447796

    —-Politico

    Oh, the humanity!

    . . . understand what they’re talking about.

    If the Republicans get their way on this, the stimulus bill will cost about $450 billion less in additional spending, and unless Biden and the Democrats manage to get another bill through Congress bailing out state and local government, there won’t be a bail out state and local government.

    P.S. Even if neither there Republicans nor the Democrats are libertarians, there is still a big difference between them–and one is far more libertarian and capitalist than the other.

    1. This is about as close to the truth as you’re likely to get from the left of center media, and even it’s slanted.

      “But Toomey wants to ensure that the Fed and Treasury are stripped of the authority to restore pandemic lending facilities that Treasury Secretary Steven Mnuchin will allow to expire on Dec. 31, including the Main Street program for mid-size businesses and facilities for municipal bond issuers and corporate credit and asset backed securities.

      Mnuchin is clawing back some $455 billion from the Fed facilities, which would be used to help pay for the new aid package for individuals and small businesses.

      But the move limits the options for Biden’s Treasury secretary nominee Janet Yellen to backstop financial markets in the event of more turmoil, and his transition team called it “deeply irresponsible.”

      —-Reuters

      https://www.reuters.com/article/us-health-coronavirus-usa-fed-idUKKBN28R3ET

      First you get what the Republicans want to do, but that’s really just a set up for the supposed authorities to damn it as “deeply irresponsible”.

      When’s the last time the Democrats didn’t think refusing to spend an additional $450 billion on something was deeply irresponsible?

      1. It’s not like the law is going to stop Biden from bailing out the blue cities and states – he has a pen and a phone after all.

        1. He can’t spend money that isn’t authorized by Congress.

          He really can’t.

          The reason Obama was able to do that with TARP was because TARP was authorized by Congress.

          Presidents can’t use an EO to fund the government much during a shut down either. If Congress doesn’t authorize those funds, they can’t be repurposed for anything.

          1. Governors can’t deny residents their civil rights and close churches, yet… 2020

          2. Didn’t Trump spend the money raised by his tariffs by subsidizing the farmers on his own authority?

            1. The president was given the discretion to raise those tariffs by Congress.

      2. Good reporting, Ken.
        Much appreciated

    2. I don’t expect much from the MSM, but it is shameful that Reason has missed this opportunity to shine a light on the backdoor deals that are being made to hang onto all that sweet, sweet stimulus money.

      This is big deal. The bailout for the states must not happen.

      1. There is no more libertarian, capitalist, and fiscally conservative issue than starving the state government beast right now.

        This is the way government is made smaller, and now’s the time to generate support for it.

        I don’t know whether this is about Reason not wanting to give praise to Republicans or whether it’s about them being in a shared, group think mentality, where they can’t even get their heads around what’s happening and why because they can’t even look at Republicans without feeling nauseated.

        But they’re missing this–and they have been for months. If the bailout of the states and municipalities is killed, it will have been killed without them hardly having noticed it.

        1. We’re currently fighting over whether to spend $450 billion (a chunk of which the Democrats effectively want to use to bail out unfunded pension obligations in blue states), but the lede on this thread is about how the federal government suffered a cyber-attack despite spending a few billion on cyber-defense.

        2. It was more important to blame orange man for covid spending and pretending Joe has a history of being sane on spending.

      2. Haha that’s the pot calling the kettle black Chuck! If mormons weren’t evil they’d take their billions of dollars and give it away. And not the phony Mormon “charities.” Most of that money goes to supporting mormons while they’re harrassing people. Or “we’ll give yoy nutritional food and clean water… But we gotta baptize ya first.”

        Mormons are hoarding money in a time like this. Shame on them.

        Please tell me if you visit Chuck!

      3. Vox Light can have multiple writers submitting articles on Trumps legal challenges, with full TDS inspired hatred, but NONE of them have covered the ongoing bailout saga. It’s pretty clear why – because they’d have to give credit to Republicans. God forbid!

        You can shit on the GOP about plenty of issues, but Trump and the Senate GOP has been outstanding on this issue. Yet, crickets from Vox Light. But don’t worry liberal trolls, Sullum will write another TDS inspired article on Trump any moment now; to be quickly followed by Root and Bailey.

    3. “The outstanding issue is how to pay for it. ”
      That hasn’t been an issue since the Clinton era. Now it’s simple: run budget deficit, have Fed buy the debt.

      1. Actually, they’re arguing about whether funds left over from the last bill will be used to pay for it without $450 billion in additional funding.

  24. The left loves their child molesters.

    https://twitter.com/MrAndyNgo/status/1339702545904791555?s=19

    Exclusive report: A serial child sex offender recently released from prison served a titular leadership role at the BLM-antifa autonomous zone in north Portland. Micah Rhodes is a registered sex offender who has victimized at least six minors. #antifa #BLM

    1. That should get buttplug2 all excited.

    2. Remind me which party nominated a known creep of teenage girls to both a senate seat and the presidency?

      Your self awareness levels are going negative.

      1. To be fair, many of the girls that Joe Biden has creeped on weren’t teenagers.

      2. The Kennedys were Dems.

      3. That would be the Democrats with Joe Biden.

      4. Bill Clinton has suffered enough!

      5. Lol, talk about a own goal.

        Here’s a compilation of creepy Uncle Joe obviously feeling little preteen girls up on camera, if you can stomach it.
        https://youtu.be/5XqF4wA-dco?t=4

        1. Like Cuties, its fine when people we like do that to kids.

          (And like Cuties I will not be watching that video either)

          1. Why some of those Dads (or Moms) didn’t cold-cock him is beyond me. I know the Secret Service is intimidating but that’s your kids.

      6. Your self awareness levels are going negative.

        Did you say that while looking in the mirror?

      7. Die on this hill Mr. “Couple times a month”

      8. NJ Senator Bob Menendez on line 1…

        Bill Clinton on line 2…

        1. Ted Kennedy and Chris Dodd on conference call.
          Larry Craig is sending some kind of morse coded message.
          Dennis Hastert is wrestling with the messenger boy over his tip.

          1. Tip of what?

    3. Andy Ngo is a known liar. He colludes with far right vigilantes. He will dox people for simply being arrested at a protest.(with the atmosphere since George Floyd and having the DHS goons there many innocent people have been arrested. Along with his exaggerating and lying I’m surprised he hasn’t had to deal with slander or libel claims)
      Fuck him.

      Rapists, child molesters, and abusers have been all across the political spectrum. Dennis Hastert, Donald Trump, Bill Clinton.

  25. https://twitter.com/yinonw/status/1339768706650533893?s=19

    Cases are skyrocketing in CA despite the trifecta of lockdowns, curfews, and masks. Florida has none of those and is experiencing fewer cases.

    1. Is the economic destruction worth it?
    2. Is the erosion of civil rights worth it?
    3. Is it even working?

    The answer is no.

    1. If those things are not working, it is evidence that we need to double down on those same things.

      1. Good and hard.

      2. Ban takeout food! Ban indoor grocery shopping! Mask up while you’re sleeping! No kissing or hugging members of your own household!

  26. https://summit.news/2020/12/17/governor-gretchen-whitmer-uses-santa-zoom-call-to-tell-kids-not-to-visit-their-families-at-christmas/

    Whitmer introduced Santa Claus to the 6 groups of children before inviting them to ask Santa questions, almost all of which were about COVID-19 rules and had obviously been scripted for them.

    Asked by one of the kids if he had to wear a mask, Santa said him and his elves are “all masked up and social distancing.”

    Father Christmas was subsequently asked if coronavirus had reached the North Pole, to which he responded that no one was taking any chances and that “we’re all gonna mask up, we’re all gonna wash our hands, and we’re all gonna stay six feet apart.”

    All of the children on one of the zoom calls were seen wearing masks.

    1. Nobody can forget, even for one second, about the pandemic. These kids need to be reminded in every way possible that they need to follow the rules.
      This is how we create good ‘party’ children who will educate their parents.

    2. This bitch really is a crazy. It’s almost like she sees the craziness from other Dem governors and says, “hold my Whiteclaw”, then ups the ante.

    3. I’m waiting for the glut of prank videos where parents tell their kids that due to social distancing and capacity guidelines, Christmas is being postponed until March. Or July if your in Washington State.

    1. UBI would be better than the current system of welfare programs. But, of course, you’d never get politicians to actually replace the current system with a UBI. UBI would be applied on top of it and we’d have double plus ungood welfare.

      Even if you managed to get them to entirely replace the current system, you know a lot of people would still blow through their monthly UBI check in a week and then complain that they need more help. It’d take at most 2 election cycles to have welfare programs piling back up on top of the UBI.

      If you’re really worried about the lazy, irresponsible masses revolting UBI is just going to be a band-aid that delays it.

      1. I think the intention of UBI is to make people dependent on it. Then when you roll out the social credit scores, loss of that income becomes an effective threat.

        Of course in the real world it won’t be that easy for them, but that won’t stop the attempt. The Davos crowd really really wants to create a global China knockoff, but for corporatists.

      2. I agree entirely, though you could just make the distributions daily to prevent so much binging.

      3. Yeah, UBI is a good idea by economists, for economists. For multitudes of people perpetually unable to rub two nickels together, it’s a bad idea.

        1. Sure, it assumes that the population is entirely made up of rational middle-class, late 19th Century Anglo-Saxons or Scandanavians instead of the 21st century rainbow coalition, most of whom have little, if any, future-time orientation.

      4. Of we go to a ubi system all checks should come with a note “you are such a useless person society has deemed it easier to pay you to stay out of the way than to deal with you trying.”

    1. These people had the largest Empire the world has ever seen at one point…

      1. So they know how to control huge numbers of people?

        1. LOL. Juice, I do enjoy your perspective.

  27. In the former’s case, one security researcher told Reuters that he’d discovered last year that the company’s update server was secured with the password “solarwinds123.” The company did not have a chief information security officer either, reports The New York Times.

    But gee only the RUSSIANS!!! could have hacked such a powerful password!

  28. One option policy makers should consider is just abolishing the Departments of Energy, Commerce, Homeland Security, and other compromised agencies we can make do without. An agency can’t be hacked if it doesn’t exist.

    Finally, a libertarian-ish solution from Unreason.

    1. Chipper was claiming Carter was more libertarian than Trump even though he formed 2 departments. Education should be added to that list.

    2. Yeah, a Harris administration will eliminate government departments. Haha!

  29. The report, which relies on data from 2018, once again gave top marks to New Zealand, Hong Kong, and Switzerland as the freest countries in the world

    What year did New Zealand ban guns by executive fiat? Oh, yeah, 2019. Not that I expect banning guns to impact any ‘scale of freedom’. Why would anyone need to defend themselves when there are such great police forces out there?

    1. NZ had low crime before and after the ban, which wasn’t obeyed. You can ban something, but that doesn’t mean the people will cooperate, otherwise there would be no War on Drugs.

      1. Hong Kong? Man, that chart’s gonna have a mean gap down.

    2. It’s a serious thing, but they’re free in many other ways.

      I bet it didn’t help their ratings any.

    3. It’s a serious thing, but they’re free in many other ways.

      I bet it didn’t help their ratings any.

    4. “When seconds matter, the police are only minutes away. (Or hours, if you live in a major metro area.)”

      -Some other guy

      1. Could be hours if you live out in the boonies as well. Might only be one or two cops on duty in the whole county.

        That came up with the whole VA 2A thing a few months ago. I saw an interview with some rural Sheriff who said he couldn’t guarantee response times of less than 45 minutes at his current staffing level and the size of the county he was responsible for. His message was that people should go get guns (preaching to the choir in rural VA) since those don’t take 45 minutes to respond.

        1. until just a few years ago my county only had one sherrif at night and he would often be called out to the wilderness where 4×4 is required we are talking hours in and hours out so essentially one call a night would get a response. listening to the scanner one night the Sheriff got lost looking for lost hunters i knew where he was and where he was supposed to be he made a right when he needed to make a left. it was kind of funny since the lost hunters kept moving also

    5. And yet, no covid restrictions for months. High rate of entrepreneurship. High savings rate. Low infant mortality.

      New Zealanders think they have it pretty good.

      But who cares, right? Gotta be able to stock up on small arms. I mean, they’ll be the least significant weapon on an actual battlefield, but don’t let that ruin a good larp. FREEDOM!

      1. Talk to a lot of NZers about Ardern’s sky-is-falling cowardly authoritarian response, or do you just like to sacrifice individual freedoms for the possibility of slowing or stopping a perceived issue? Not the classic libertarian stance, certainly, but it takes all kinds. As for the NZ ‘data,’ statistics can be used to show anything. The savings rate will no longer apply. Infant mortality, who cares? Entrepreneurship? Maybe, but I will bet that that is no longer the case. And, without the freedom to enjoy these things, they simply don’y matter. One might think you would understood this, but you seem to devote your time to ad hominem attacks.

        1. DOL isn’t a libertarian, so expecting libertarian stances is off base.

          “No COVID restrictions” is rich. Look at what you have to do if you want to enter or exit NZ right now and tell me there aren’t restrictions.

        2. Ardern style of “leadership” isn’t leadership at all. She seems to be scared of everything, including her own shadow. EVERYTHING is scary and you lowly citizens should give up your rights to trust government to make it better. Nothing she says gives me any confidence that she could actually fix anything. It really amazing that somebody like her got into power. Says a lot about Kiwis.

      2. I mean, they’ll be the least significant weapon on an actual battlefield, but don’t let that ruin a good larp. FREEDOM!

        “Siege of Kobani? What’s that?”

    6. and what year did New Zealand ban tourism? 2020

    7. Typical self centered, evil goddamn Mormon. You’re opinion means shit Chuck. Worshipping a pedo con artist disqualifies you from having any say on anything. Mormons shouldn’t be given any authority. That’s a disaster waiting to happen. Not only are they really goddamn stupid, but they think they know what’s best for everyone else. They’re authoritarian pieces of shit.

      Kill yourself asshole!

      1. I thought you hicklib faggots were into pedophilia, considering how common grooming appears to be in your community.

        More self-loathing, it seems.

        1. What “community” are you referring to?
          No self awareness, it seems.

          I know you’re too stupid, but you really should try to hide your bigotry. I suppose maybe you realized that conservatives will never be able to purge the uneducated bigots from their ranks so they might as well embrace it.
          However you repulse normal people.

  30. As we watch Biden fill out his cabinet, there’s one theme emerging. See if you can spot the trend!

    1) Biden’s Secretary of the Treasury: Janet Yellen

    Janet Yellen has promised to make fighting climate change a priority as Treasury secretary, spurring hope among activists she will put the issue at the center of U.S. economic policy for the first time.

    Yellen, President-elect Joe Biden’s nominee to lead the Treasury Department, has already endorsed a tax on carbon dioxide emissions and urged countries to set up independent councils that can pursue aggressive climate policies without political interference.

    —-Bloomberg

    https://www.bloomberg.com/news/articles/2020-12-11/yellen-gets-a-shot-to-throw-treasury-s-clout-into-climate-fight

    2) Joe Biden’s “Climate Envoy”: John Kerry

    3) Joe Biden’s “Climate Czar”: Gina McCarthy

    4) Joe Biden’s Secretary of Energy: Jennifer Granholm

    Granholm is a two-term governor of Michigan with deep roots in the auto industry, of crucial importance if you plan to move the auto industry away from fossil fuels.

    5) Secretary of Transportation: Pete Buttigieg

    Buttigieg is already on the record with his own version of the Green New Deal

    Conclusion: Those of you who imagine that Biden’s campaign promises regarding the Green New Deal shouldn’t be taken too seriously need to account for this: If Joe Biden selected his cabinet based primarily on the intent to push through his Green New Deal, I’m not sure he could have picked a better bunch. Being supportive of the Green New Deal seems to be his primary consideration.

    1. Joe Biden doesn’t support the Green New Deal, he merely supports laying the groundwork for the Green New Deal.

      1. I get what you’re saying, but just for the record, Biden says he does support the Green New Deal on his campaign website.

        “Biden believes the Green New Deal is a crucial framework for meeting the climate challenges we face. It powerfully captures two basic truths, which are at the core of his plan: (1) the United States urgently needs to embrace greater ambition on an epic scale to meet the scope of this challenge, and (2) our environment and our economy are completely and totally connected.”

        —-Joe Biden

        https://joebiden.com/climate-plan/

        He’s also promised to eliminate all carbon emissions from power generation in 15 years.

        1. Green Raw Deal is a better name. “New” stuff requires destroying nature and using resources. Raw food is healthier.

    2. The Senate won’t go along, but Biden will have a phone and pen and we all know what those are worth in the right hands.

      1. I don’t know that every senator will hold in the face of whatever Joe Biden and the Democrats are willing to give, say, a Susan Collins if she breaks with the party. Different agency facilities end up in different states because people are willing to make deals for such things. Can they create 10,000 highly paid government jobs in Maine if she jumps ship? Who in Maine will fault her for bringing those jobs to their state?

        And people commit political suicide every year for all sorts of unexpected reasons. For instance, I’m not sure Justin Amash realized he’d committed political suicide until after he’d done it.

        1. Of course Republicans won’t hold, they aren’t there to stop or repeal Democratic gains, they’re there merely to slow them down.

          1. The point is that it will only take one of them–now that Trump is no longer in the White House.

            When your party is in the White House, it’s like being on offense and having a quarterback.

            When your party isn’t in the White House, you’re playing on defense. You’re not expected to shut the other team out. You’re just trying to keep the scoring to a minimum.

            Biden will score some points. They can’t stop him entirely, and the coverage will occasionally break down.

        2. “We’re doing this anyway, so if you don’t vote with us to provide a thin veneer of legitimacy, you’ll be undermining democracy. And… it’s a shame what happens to people who undermine democracy.”

    3. By rejoining the Paris Climate Accord, Biden would destroy America’s economy (especially our recently independent energy industry), while allowing China to double its carbon emissions and take over the world.

      Hopefully, Joe Manchin has also noticed that Biden’s cabinet nominees plan to ban (mostly by price hikes via thousands of new federal regulations) coal and natural gas, which dominate West Virginia’s past, present and future economies.

      If Manchin switches to Republican, he could likely become chair or any Senate committee he desires.

    4. Cabinet members have no role is passing legislation.

      1. No. They just have a role in implementing policy.

        Neither Betsy DeVos, Ajit Pai, nor Pompeo passed a single piece of legislation, but their actions had a profound impact on the implementation of policy–from Title IX and “net neutrality” to Pompeo’s forcing the U.S. backed government in Kabul to release Taliban prisoners and start negotiations with the Taliban.

        From the top of the Treasury, the DoT, and the DoE, those folks can do an awful lot of damage.

    5. Team of rivals. Expect more transparency, anonymous leakers, and former staffers calling Biden the fucking moron he is than even the previous administration.

      /sarc

    6. Come on Ken. This isn’t important at all. The real question is: “Does Biden make mean tweets?” You KNOW the answers is no. Everything else is secondary to Twitter protocol.

      Means Tweets = LITERALLY Hitler. Everybody knows this.

  31. https://www.gatestoneinstitute.org/16863/free-press-foreclosure

    The “fourth estate” refers to freedom of the press. The term may have first been used by the philosopher-statesman Edmund Burke, who in 1787 highlighted the press as free and apart from the other three British “estates” — clergy, royalty and commoners.

    The modern meaning, however, refers to the press as a fourth and free power — as even a “watchdog” — over the executive, legislative and judicial branches of our government. Today, however, it is the watchdog that needs watching.

    The foundation on which the United States is built, freedom of speech and freedom of the press, is enshrined in the First Amendment to the US Constitution:

    “Congress shall make no law respecting an establishment of religion, or prohibiting the free exercise thereof; or abridging the freedom of speech, or of the press; or the right of the people peaceably to assemble, and to petition the Government for a redress of grievances.”

    Before our eyes, however, this freedom is being distorted, strangled and withheld.

    Young people today seem to have no idea of what the media used to be when America was more united. All the newspapers and media outlets recognized and covered the same big stories. The ideal to which journalistic professionalism aspired was objective reporting — at least an attempt toward it — and the media at least tried to keep “news” balanced, and separate from opinions and op-eds.

    Today, journalism has changed so that the “news” is often conflated with unsupported and biased opinion. Consider Newsweek’s story on Senator Ron Johnson’s (R-Wis.) poll-supported claim that “Donald Trump would have won the election if the media had given more coverage to unsubstantiated allegations concerning President-elect Joe Biden’s son, Hunter.” The word “unsubstantiated” is the reporter’s opinion — not a certified fact. As we are seeing now, and as Senator Johnson was doubtless well aware, the allegations were smothered in substantiation. All a reporter had to do was look.

    Similarly, some journalists cannot seem to hold themselves back from reporting on Trump’s supposedly “baseless” claims of election fraud — despite eyewitness affidavits, vote count anomalies, abrogations of both the Constitution and states’ election laws, and the use of Dominion voting machines and Smartmatic software that are reported to have the capacity to flip votes secretly from one candidate to another.

    Widely censored by both Big Tech and the mainstream media was a New York Post article which asserted that an abandoned laptop, the undisputed property of former Vice-President Joe Biden’s son, Hunter, implicates him as the family “concierge” for the Biden family’s influence-peddling in China — a country cited by Director of National Intelligence John Ratcliffe as America’s “National Security Threat No. 1.”

    Two corroborated reports in the New York Post highlighted Hunter Biden’s financial interests in various foreign countries — include his partnering with two Chinese military companies, one under investigation for espionage and the other for human rights violations. Both New York Post articles were censored — actually totally blocked — for two weeks by Twitter and Facebook, as was, for a time, the Twitter account of White House Press Secretary Kayleigh McEnany for having posted the contraband information.

    As Glen Greenwald, who recently resigned from The Intercept, the website he co-founded, wrote, weeks before the election:

    “Early in the day, users who attempted to link to the New York Post story either publicly or privately received a cryptic message rejecting the attempt as an ‘error.’ Later in the afternoon, Twitter changed the message, advising users that they could not post that link because the company judged its contents to be ‘potentially harmful.'”

    Recently, YouTube, announced that it was removing all videos accurately “claiming (that) mass fraud changed election results.” Left unperturbed, however, are masses of inaccurate material, such as that President Trump allegedly colluded with Russia, or Chinese and Iranian propaganda claiming “the US army may have brought the coronavirus disease to Wuhan.”

    It was also, it seems, perfectly fine for the New York Times, as its editor-in-chief, Dean Baquet, admitted, to have “built our newsroom” around the fake Russia Hoax for two years, but the confirmed facts concerning the Biden family’s influence peddling was apparently “not fit to print” — especially before an election the newspaper was manipulating.

    Divisions in the media have also created for the public widely divergent images of the president. To one group, President Trump is supposedly a far-right, authoritarian tyrant, allegedly seeking permanent rule; a buffoon, a fascist, racist, white supremacist, narcissist, lunatic, and incompetent, lacking in both empathy and presidential dignity.

    To another group, he is the patriotic upholder of the American Constitution, a man of legendary accomplishments in office — four more partners for peace in the Middle East (the UAE, Bahrain, Sudan and Morocco); producing and delivering a new vaccine in less than a year; expanding school choice to improve “equality”; preventing Iran from a nuclear breakout; protecting the US border from trafficking and drug smuggling, and unmasking and confronting China as a lawless, omnivorous threat. To this group, he is a Hercules, delivering for the people in spite of unrelenting attempts to undermine him, and by far the last best hope of saving the United States from an energized, appeasement-prone, increasingly socialist takeover.

    Many believe that what the US has been experiencing – such as the bogus charges of collusion with Russia, a kangaroo impeachment, and now an election that appears overwhelmingly stolen — is nothing less than a succession of attempted coups d’états, more in keeping with Russia, China, Venezuela and Cuba than with a sustainable republic.

    This month, it was claimed that Republican Governor Brian Kemp of Georgia “awarded a $107 million contract to Dominion voting machines two weeks after meeting with People’s Republic of China’s Consul General.”

    Senator Chuck Schumer has already announced that he would like to “change America.” He has not quite specified into what.

    Transitions to tyranny — in the name of “helping the people” — usually take place along with the “cancel culture’s” desecration of statues, re-writing of history, outbreaks of rioting, looting, murders and ongoing denigration to whip up hate.

    For much of the country, the attempted coups have now been sanctified and made to seem legitimate by the election — that many feel was “stolen” — of former Vice-President Biden. One can surely understand how Republicans feel now that the top-ranking conspirators involved the attempted coups have captured the government through their figurehead, former Vice-President Biden.

    Clearly, voter fraud must be investigated, as scheduled in upcoming hearings under Senator Ron Johnson December 16. If elections continue the same way — by legitimizing practices that sidestep Constitutional and states’ laws — as they threaten to do in two run-off elections in Georgia on January 5, we will no longer have a viable republic. The two upcoming elections in Georgia to determine control of the Senate may end up being the last firewall of a workable, multi-party nation.

    Also clear is that the election of former Vice-President Biden was made possible not only because he was supported by almost universally biased mainstream newspapers and television stations that distorted or snuffed stories at will, as well as by Wall Street corporations and Big Tech companies aching to do business with a lucrative, if hegemonic, China.

    Currently, power in America is concentrated in six companies:

    “News Corp, Disney, Viacom, Time Warner, CBS and Comcast own 90% of the TV stations, radio stations, movies, magazines and newspapers that 277 million Americans rely on for news and entertainment.”

    Those companies have been “consolidated from 50 companies back in 1983.” Supporting them are supposed “fact checkers” — often suspect, and funded in large part by liberal billionaires such as George Soros and Bill Gates who most of the time support the Democrats.

    Meanwhile, countless Americans have had advertising accounts or websites abridged or closed simply because Big Tech does not agree with their views. The investigative organization “Project Veritas” exposed Twitter’s “shadow banning” mainly right-of-center views, meaning that “users were blocked from the platform without even being notified.”

    On November 17, the Senate Judiciary Committee questioned Facebook’s CEO Mark Zuckerberg and Twitter’s CEO Jack Dorsey about their political bias and practices, perhaps in an effort to curb their manipulation of a tremendous market dominance of information. Republican Josh Hawley questioned Zuckerberg about one program in particular, “Tasks,” which is ostensibly used to share and coordinate “security-related” information between Twitter, Facebook and Google.

    Zuckerberg claimed that the coordination was confined to “terrorism and foreign government influence but not content.”

    Really? Then why did the media “breathlessly” cover Adam Schiff’s fake “content” that the laptop scandal was “Russian disinformation,” a claim emphatically denied by Director of National Intelligence John Ratcliffe.

    Despite Big Tech’s millions in donations to members of Congress, some members are considering revoking Section 230 of the Communications Decency Act , which provides immunity to Big Tech from content they post, or breaking up the Big Tech companies as violators of anti-trust laws, the better to enable competition.

    Zuckerberg also mentioned the intention of the three media giants to support the two Democrats in the senate run-off races in Georgia on January 5. A George Soros-Bloomberg group has already contributed $300,000 to the two Democrats in their attempt to defeat incumbent Republican Senators Kelly Loeffler and David Perdue.

    Of the Democratic challengers in Georgia, Jon Ossoff has had business ties with a Chinese company, PCCW Media, a telecom company, whose chairman, Richard Li, has for years opposed pro-democracy protestors in Hong Kong. The Rev. Raphael Warnock, backed by the billionaire George Soros, is anti-military, anti-Israel, and has praised a fellow-preacher, Frederick Haynes III, “a Louis Farrakhan-supporting preacher after he compared President Donald Trump’s election to the Sept. 11 terrorist attacks and applauded efforts to defund police departments.”

    The latest efforts by the media giants have been the attempt to discredit President Trump’s claims of massive fraud in the election; claims backed up by Trump lawyers such as Rudy Giuliani, Jenna Ellis, Lin Wood and Sidney Powell, as well as various experts in technology.

    How did all this come about in star-spangled America? The radicalization seems to have actually begun in our institutions of higher learning, perhaps by teachers and others in power. Many who were radical protestors in the 1960s and ’70s, may well have since been indoctrinating public school children with a version of history calculated to make them despise their country and accept communism.

    As presidential historian Craig Shirley has written in “They’re Coming for you, Mark Zuckerberg”:

    “As instructed in Rules for Radicals by Saul Alinsky, the left either destroys or takes over institutions in order to gain control; power. Public education … is now under the thumb of the left and their labor unions, and our children are not learning, except to mouth leftist bromides.”

    At present, radicalized schools are, not surprisingly, turning out radicalized reporters. According to a study by the National Association of Scholars, Democrat professors outnumber Republican ones by nine to one. In the Northeast, the ratio was 15.4 to one. If you want to know what happened to the Republicans, just ask Daniel Ravicher, a law professor at Miami University, censured for tweets that supported Trump.

    What we are witnessing in the universities appears to be massive, Marxist-inspired group-think. It has also infested the media and other areas of society, thereby crushing another essential linchpin of democracy: the free marketplace of ideas.

    If you think that a slow-motion coup seems unlikely, tune in to William Binney’s interview with Chris Hedges. A former technical director of the National Security Agency (NSA), Binney maintains he retired in disgust when he realized that the NSA used the technology that he had created to spy on Americans.

    One hopeful sign is that in the US, we do not have complete censorship — at least yet. In freedom of the press lies its reverent responsibility for the freedom and welfare of the people.

    As more and more news of the election fraud has comes to the attention of Americans, rallies have sprung up in support of honest elections. So far, still to be answered, is the question: If election officials can ignore legalities with impunity, how, going forward, can there be trustworthy elections?

    Whatever the final outcome of the current presidential election, let us hope that the frogs are starting to jump out.

    1. Dude, you’re going to break the scroll wheel on my mouse.

    2. The radicalization seems to have actually begun in our institutions of higher learning, perhaps by teachers and others in power. Many who were radical protestors in the 1960s and ’70s, may well have since been indoctrinating public school children with a version of history calculated to make them despise their country and accept communism.

      This is not a secret. The Soviets were able to infiltrate the governments in Eastern Europe through murder and corruption in short order, but they always knew they had to play the long game with the West. Instead of infiltrating the governments where they could be rooted out, they went after the institutes of higher learning. It is no coincidence that all the radicalism on US college campuses happens 20 years after enough of the professors and administrators they had planted or corrupted achieved tenured positions and couldn’t be fired for expressing their anti-capitalist viewpoints.

      Fake it ’til you make it. That’s how socialism takes root.

      1. It’s really funny when conservatives accuse colleges of “indoctrinating” students with liberal or progressive ideas. It’s obvious they were too stupid to go to college otherwise they’d know how stupid that is.
        To be fair to them they consider anything to the left of kissing Trump’s ass as Marxist.

        If you wanna see indoctrination look at BYU. They teach all sorts of delusional lies there.

        Stupid fucking far right looney Mormon.

        1. Did you go to BYU?

          1. Of course not. I know some people who did.

            Fuck a school named after a racist dictator!

            1. It’s really funny when KAR accuses BYU of “indoctrinating” students with delusional lies. It’s obvious they were too stupid to go to BYU otherwise they’d know how stupid that is.

              1. I would never apply to that bigoted shit school in bigoted shit town. I assume I’d be too smart to get in because you can’t question Mormon theology and go there. You also can’t drink, smoke, fuck, or have any fun.

                I was responding to the morons who claim colleges indoctrinate students with liberal ideas. I also see people claiming public schools are indoctrinating kids. That’s pretty stupid too, but I do have some anecdotes. I’ve heard so many southerners say that their teachers taught lost cause Propoganda. Maybe righties make those claims because that’s what they do and they assume liberals do it too?

                Are you Mormon? Did you go to that bigoted shit stain of a school?

        2. “It’s really funny when conservatives”

          It’s really funny when you liberals have bad poker faces.

          1. It’s really funny when the America hating traitors show their true colors.
            At least when it’s coward keyboard warriors.
            It’s scary when it’s Republicans in congress and the military. It’s terrifying there are over 100 traitors in congress.

    3. wasn’t there a word limit at some point?

      1. At least there were breaks for the paragraphs. 🙂

  32. “Hackers had reportedly inserted a backdoor into SolarWinds’ Orion network management software.”

    See, that damned solar power shit is just a commie plot, and has been all along.

  33. In the former’s case, one security researcher told Reuters that he’d discovered last year that the company’s update server was secured with the password “solarwinds123.”

    Hey, that’s way better than “password”, right?

  34. “The Boston Landmarks Commission would like the public’s input on whether property owners should be allowed to demolish this potentially historic garage.”

    Is that a garage? Or a bunker (or meth lab)?

    1. Murder shack.

      1. You Mormons are such lying, self centered pieces of shit. Always trying to portray themselves as some kind of suffering christ like figures. It’s bullshit because they’re the aggressors!

        You’re such a self centered piece of shit Chuck! “I didn’t do anything you just started ridiculing me!”
        I know you’re really stupid, but hopefully you understand.

        If you don’t want to be ridiculed and eventually strangled with magic underwear THEN DONT BELONG TO AN EVIL, STUPID CHURCH.
        Pretty goddamn simple. When you believe such a stupid religion and try to force it on others don’t be surprised when they don’t like it. Of course people are going to point out how goddamn stupid what you believe is when it’s been disproven.

        Burn in hell you goddamn redneck.
        It says a lot about you that you’d leave beautiful Oregon for shithole Texas. The majority of Oregonians are nicer and smarter than Texans too.

        There’s a reason the rest of the country makes fun of Texas and the south. It’s the asshole of America.

        1. I’m going to laugh my ass off when a Mormon re-enacts the Mountain Meadows Massacre on you, hicklib.

          Of course, you could always save them the trouble and slit your own throat. Send us the livestream for that, please!

          1. Not gonna happen.
            Let your Mormon klan buddies know I’d fuck them up.

            Red Racist White Supremacist

            You can call me a hick till the cows come home. It doesn’t change the facts:
            You’re an unrepent racist ad bigot.
            You won’t even say what state you live in. Because you live in an uneducated rural shithole.
            You’re really fucking stupid.
            You’re a racist bigoted asshole.

            Reason commenters are such shitbags. Using the N word and F word is fine, but anyone criticizing mormons needs to be cancel cultured to death for being a bigot.
            I’ve also noticed that any criticism of Israel or support shown for Palestinians is labeled anti-Semitic.
            All the Trump cult members keep bringing up Israel’s treaties with the Gulf Arab states. Asking how will these affect Israel’s occupation of the West Bank isn’t anti-Semitic! Some of my jewish friends are more critical of Israel than me.
            Yet actual anti-Semitic tropes like Soros being a Nazi or collaborating with Nazis is posted all the time.

            Everytime on of the inbred right wing loons tals shit to me on here is a badge of honor. If I got under the skin of Trump loving racists then I did something good!

            Red Racist White Supremacist is an America hating traitor!

        2. “There’s a reason the rest of the country makes fun of is moving to Texas and the south”

          FTFY

          1. It still gets made fun of a lot. To be fair Texas is a big diverse state. There are nice parts and there are shit parts.

            The south is just one big shithole

            1. Is that why you don’t go into the black neighborhoods, hicklib? I can see why you moved to the whitest metropolitan area in the country, those niggers can be scary.

              1. I didn’t move there I was born and raised. I actually grew up in the more diverse part of town.

                You really have no shame in posting bigoted and racist stuff? No one is calling you out for it either?
                Yet when I point out what Chuck CHOOSES to believe is goddamn nonsense I get called a hateful bigot.

                So I guess many reason commenters feel bigotry against mormons is unacceptable (I’ve also had multiple people complain I was racist against rural working class whites). However racism and homophobia including open use of the N word and F word is fine. Especially if its directed at a liberal.

                People don’t choose their ethnicity, gender, orientation, culture… Mormons choose to belong to a religion that has been disproven. They choose to try and force it on everyone.

                Fuck off you racist piece of trash!

              2. Portland metro is probably whiter than SLC but that’s because of all the Polynesian Mormons. Salt Lake City is not diverse at all. It’s the worst city, metro area, and state in the country.
                Outside there’s lots of great outdoors stuff, but you still have to put up with stupid bigots.
                As far as just cities go SLC is king shithole. There’s barely any bars or pubs, and it’s damn near impossible to get real beer instead of that 3.2 shit.

                They hosted the Olympics because of Mormon money and Romney. They’re trying to host again. The Olympics are an immoral crock of shit, but fuck Salt Lake hosting again. They shouldn’t have an NBA team for Christ’s sake. Goddamn and the stupid mormons would talk about how they should get an NFL team. I’d point out there’s not that many people there and NFL games are played on Sunday! A few years ago BYU played a game here and they moved EVERYONES game back a day so BYU wouldn’t have to play on Sunday. Fuck that! They should play or forfeit! Did Sandy Koufax ask baseball to not play the WS on Yom Kippur?
                The PAC12 made a horrible mistake letting Utah in. Utah was plan D, but it should of been plan Z. Any other mountain west team that’s not BYU or air force. Now the PAC12 is stuck with those Mormon shitbags. BYU got all butthurt and went independent. Doesn’t matter cuz they always have and always will suck. Their 1984 “championship” is such goddamn bullshit. They beat a 5 loss team in the Holiday bowl. What little success the mormons have in football is because of the Polynesians they’ve tricked. More proof how self centered and delusional mormons are is Lavell Edwards and Jerry Sloan are treated like gods in Utah. “The Jazz practically have 2 titles, but they had to play Michael Jordan.” Other teams black players who get in trouble are “thugs,” but Karl Malone has his name on car dealerships there and they don’t know anything about that 13 year old he had a kid with when he was 20.

                Fuck Mormons and fuck racist bigots like Red Rocks.

    2. Perhaps these people have a much different understanding of “ownership” than I do.

      If I actually own it I don’t need to seek permission to demolish it, and certainly not from the general public.

      1. Ownership is a racist, patriarchal, transphobic, and xenophobic concept.

        1. One more and we can win liberal slander bingo.

          1. Scratch that, this is liberal bingo, you get to pick however many free spaces you want. EVERYONE WINS!

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  36. “Vaccinating the elderly first, rather than essential workers, will save more lives according to a model from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC).”

    Maybe since some “essential” worker, like a 25 year old teacher, has a 0.001% chance of contracting COVID and dying.

    1. They really don’t care how long they keep people in care homes locked up. So many won’t be voting in 2024.

      1. “So many won’t be voting in 2024.”

        Well….

      2. Mormons shouldn’t get the vaccine. Or it should be contingent on them agreeing to stop reproducing and trying to convert people.
        I’m a pacifist at heart, so they should be given the chance to live if they do the right thing.
        Unfortunately they never will or will just lie. That’s why they need to be exterminated.

      3. They’re mostly white and conservative anyway.

  37. The antitrust case filed today focuses on whether Google is illegally preferencing its own services in search.
    The FTC investigated this exact question in 2013 & voted unanimously not to pursue a case.
    Canadian competition bureau did the same in 2016.

    The Canadian competition bureau’s investigation was launched by Stephen Harper’s government and stopped by Justin Trudeau who had become Prime Minister several months earlier.
    Google had donated millions to Trudeau’s PAC because up here it’s legal.

    Funny how that wasn’t mentioned.

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  39. As if this year wasn’t apocalyptic enough already, over a dozen federal agencies—including the one that manages all our nukes—had their internal networks compromised in what’s being described as the “worst ever” hack of the U.S. government.

    In all seriousness, why am I supposed to care? Why would I consider this to be even remotely qualified as one of the things that made 2020 a bad year?

  40. We gonna get anything about the ATF going after legit businesses and arbitrarily deciding that some firearms are now NFA items?

  41. But the USA should be rising in the freedom rankings, having voted out literal Hitler and elected two liberals to run the government….

  42. Dem Sen. Shaheen: GOP Lawmakers Trying to Overturn Election ‘Bordering on Sedition and Treason’

    Democrats never have the Constitution on their side when they talk.

    Jan 6, 2021 Joint Session of Congress is going to be called sedition by Democrats when the Constitution clearly describes the procedure.

    Then the 12th Amendment vote where Trump wins the majority of states.

  43. ‘Fraud Happened’: Sen. Rand Paul Says the Election in ‘Many Ways Was Stolen’

    The Commies at unreason will suddenly hate Rand Paul.

    1. “Suddenly”?
      ENB’s been hating and calling the Paul’s “racists” for ages.

  44. Never Trump Bill Kristol Offers to Help Joe Biden Win Amnesty

    Poor Never-Trumper Neo-Cons. No place to call home.

    Republicans and Libertarians hate you. Democrats hate you.

  45. President Trump’s Executive Order On Foreign Interference in Elections Comes Due Today – Things Are Going to Get Real

    Joe Biden getting a trial at Guantanamo Bay would be fitting for such a treasonous piece of shit.

  46. Pennsylvania Coronavirus Cases Rise Despite Months-Long Statewide Mask Mandates

    All the mask pussies will pivot and blame the non-mask wearers like me.

  47. Hollywood Had A Bad Year

    HAHA. Fuck those Commie bastards. You reap what you sow.

    1. Lefties sow Commie bullshit and they reap stinky garbage.

      1. Congratulations LC! You must be very happy.

        1. I know I am.

          Anyway, Japanese action, Korean dramas, German crime shows, British comedies and Nigerian and Indian musicals are far more entertaining than the edgelord capeshit and snide social-signaling coming out of Hollywood.

        2. Im very happy. Unreason doesnt know shit.

          Which means their assessment that biden will be president is shit.

          Its not over till its over. Republicans have the constitution on their side.

  48. Scarlet Macaw is at the top of the list of the ten most beautiful birds according to its distinct color combination on the body. Belonging to the category of parrots, the bird lives mainly in the moist evergreen forests of South America. Little birds appear to have been observed in the provinces other than the Coiba Islands.

    The Scarlet Macaw is a large, uniquely colored body with a combination of red, yellow, and blue. Besides, it is considered the smartest bird around the world, which can make sounds like real people. Finally, a bird can travel an average of about 90 cm in length at speeds above 35 mph. Another interesting fact is that the life expectancy of a bird is an impressive figure of 75 per year.

    The Scarlet Macaw

    1. Is there some kind of secret code hidden in the selection of what birds you describe, where and when?

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