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SEC Goes After Cryptocurrency 'Influencers,' Starting With DJ Khaled and Floyd Mayweather: Reason Roundup

Plus: the First Amendment problems with prosecuting Wikileaks and the trans troops ban is dealt another blow.

Background: SERGII IAREMENKO/SCIENCE PHOTO LIBRARY/NewscomBackground: SERGII IAREMENKO/SCIENCE PHOTO LIBRARY/NewscomThe feds are now targeting "social media influencers" who promote cryptocurrencies. Last week, the Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC) announced charges in its very first cases involving crypto initial coin offerings (ICOs), fining music producer DJ Khaled and boxer Floyd Mayweather Jr.* for social-media posts that "may have appeared to be unbiased, rather than paid endorsements" of new coins.

"Mayweather failed to disclose promotional payments from three ICO issuers, including $100,000 from Centra Tech Inc.," said an SEC press release.

Khaled failed to disclose a $50,000 payment from Centra Tech, which he touted on his social media accounts as a "Game changer." Mayweather's promotions included a message to his Twitter followers that Centra's ICO "starts in a few hours. Get yours before they sell out, I got mine…"

Mayweather agreed to pay $614,775 in fees as part his penalty and Khaled agreed to pay $152,725. Steven Peikin, co-director of the SEC's enforcement division, commented that "social media influencers are often paid promoters, not investment professionals, and the securities they're touting, regardless of whether they are issued using traditional certificates or on the blockchain, could be frauds."

Beginning last year, the SEC advised that "any celebrity or other individual who promotes a virtual token or coin that is a security must disclose the nature, scope, and amount of compensation received in exchange for the promotion." But what crypto counts as a security isn't quite clear.

SEC Chair Jay Clayton said last week:

We don't believe Bitcoin is a security. Many of the ICOs that you see and you talk about, they are securities. And if you're going to offer or sell securities, you have to do so in compliance with our laws. We've been clear about that.

Hacked.com reports that "several SEC officials have also said that Ethereum is considered a non-security."

Since the 2017 announcement, the SEC has been cracking down on ICOs; "a top official said earlier this year that dozens of cases are pending," points out the cryptocurrency news site CCN. One result of the SEC's new interest is that it's become harder for platforms such as Coinbase to offer new coins:

In May, Coinbase announced its interest in listing Stellar (XLM), Cardano (ADA), 0x (ZRX), Zcash (ZEC), and Basic Attention Token (BAT). Fast forward nearly seven months, the exchange has only been able to add three out of the five cryptocurrencies it set out to integrate.

Coinbase has been cautious in ensuring that a digital asset is not recognized as a security by the SEC because in a hypothetical case that an asset listed by an exchange is declared a security by the U.S. government, the exchange could be prosecuted for illicitly distributing unregistered securities.

The "next wave" of the SEC's crypto crackdown will hit "social media influencers who have promoted ICOs to the general public," CCN predicts.

FREE MINDS

FOLLOW-UP

Trump's transgender troops ban has been dealt another blow. The Defense Department had requested "a stay of the Court's October 30, 2017 preliminary injunction which prevents Defendants from enforcing a ban on transgender individuals serving in the military," or, at a minimum, "a stay of the nationwide scope of the injunction pending the outcome of their appeal to the United States Court of Appeals for the District of Columbia Circuit," where oral arguments are scheduled for December 10.

"The Court finds that Defendants do not have a likelihood of success of the merits of their appeal, that Defendants do not face irreparable harm, that Plaintiffs would be harmed by staying the Court's preliminary injunction, and that public interest does not favor a stay," the court ruled on Friday. "Accordingly, Defendants' motion for a stay of this Court's preliminary injunction is DENIED."

QUICK HITS

• "I will be formally terminating Nafta shortly," President Trump announced to reporters over the weekend. "Congress will have a choice of the [newly agreed-upon trade deal with Mexico and Canada] USMCA or pre-Nafta, which worked very well."

• Yikes—a bipartisan "privacy bill" (i.e., tech and web regulation) is being drafted for early next year.

• This week in Congress, former FBI director James Comey will testify—in private, alas—before the House Judiciary Committee.

• "Virginia may be for lovers, but it's not for lovers of free speech."

• An interesting case is coming before the U.S. Supreme Court week and could upend the country's more than 150-year-old policy of allowing people to be prosecuted by the feds and by state sources for the same crimes.

• Sigh. Predictably but still disappointingly, Trump turns out to be a fair-weather sentencing reformer:

CORRECTION: This post was previously illustrated with an image of Floyd Mayweather Sr. It is his son, Floyd Mayweather Jr., who was in trouble with the SEC.

Photo Credit: Background: SERGII IAREMENKO/SCIENCE PHOTO LIBRARY/Newscom

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  • Fist of Etiquette||

    This week in Congress, former FBI director James Comey will testify—in private, alas—before the House Judiciary Committee.

    Lies are classified.

  • ||

    Hello.

    You know it's a strange life when I trust Trump more than I do Trudeau.

  • Rich||

    Good Morning, Rufus! What's the Canadian bird's-eye lowdown on Trump's impending impeachment?

  • Chipper Morning Baculum||

    Yeah, what's in the eye of the loon?

  • ||

    Do you have to ask?

    Canadians consistently disappoint me where offering insights about America are concerned.

  • Fist of Etiquette||

    "Virginia may be for lovers, but it's not for lovers of free speech."

    They walked right into that one.

  • DiegoF||

    The Mises Institute folks would certainly have a field day pointing out how the courts apparently have a precedent of striking down this kind of advertising ban but not other, even more onerous restrictions on "commercial speech"; and how letting bars have a Happy Hour but not letting them advertise it is oppression as the courts see it, but banning it altogether is perfectly compatible with their rights and liberties.

  • SIV||

    21A says anything the states want to do to regulate alcohol is constitutional. It wasn't just a repeal of 18A.

  • loveconstitution1789||

    States still need their State Constitutions to allow for banning alcohol or drugs.

    States dont have plenary powers. They get the general powers via authorization from their State Constitutions.

    States have provisions for regulating business but not banning products and services.

  • DiegoF||

    Well, the Mises Institute folks would certainly not only applaud the result--as they are both very, very extreme subsidiarists and opponents of judicial review itself--but also argue that the 14A (which they think was oppression and should be repealed anyway) did not incorporate a single individual right against the states. Needless to say they have a very minimalist view of the Interstate Commerce clause and completely reject any Negative Interstate Commerce Clause reading. I said they would point out the amusing contrasts that controlling legal precedent creates; I didn't say they would suggest that the courts remedy that by "protecting liberty" in the way that mainstream libertarianism (and I, for what it's worth) might like. These are people who would have decided for New London against Kelo, and published article after article ridiculing opposition to SCOTUS's decision.

    Back in the real world, courts have backed further and further away over time from thinking Section 2 of the 21A did anything at all. The main Supreme who has put up any stink about it is Thomas, who absolutely loathes Negative Commerce. So so much for any originalist opposition to this little bit of libertarian activism. Maybe Gorsuch will change things, but that about it. You know Kavanaugh will not--and not just because of the subject matter!

  • Chipper Morning Baculum||

    Too bad many of the Mises people are collectivists. Their ideal society is local oppression of individual rights and they oppose the federal government because it puts limits on state and local government. The thing is, as Jacob Levy has pointed out, sometimes the federal government protects individual rights from the oppression of intermediate groups, such as the state and local governments. So, to me, the issue of localism always being better is not at all so clear-cut.

  • DiegoF||

    I am at the opposite end of the spectrum when it comes to subsidiarity--I think it is pretty much just a rule of thumb that it is mostly good for liberty, one that is often false. And I think that the MI crowd very clearly goes over the edge in their pro-subsidiarity rhetoric and uses blatantly collectivist language, as though that were OK as long as you do it in the context of subsidiarism. Subsidiarity is a tool to blunt the oppression inherent in collectivism; I don't care how effective a tool you think it is, you don't have to start talking like collectivists in its defense.

    That said, I think there are persuasive things to be said in defense of extreme subsidiarism; I've learned a lot from listening to them, even if I'm not convinced.

  • Chipper Morning Baculum||

    I agree that subsidiarism is often, and especially in recent times, good for liberty. My point was that it is not always so. Historically, for example, the federal government has often protected minorities from the oppression of state governments.

  • loveconstitution1789||

    Except when the bloated federal government didn't.

    Overreaching Commerce Clause federal action.
    Waco.
    Ruby Ridge.
    Controlled Substances Act.
    ....

  • loveconstitution1789||

    Amendment XXI
    Section 1.
    The eighteenth article of amendment to the Constitution of the United States is hereby repealed.
    Section 2.
    The transportation or importation into any state, territory, or possession of the United States for delivery or use therein of intoxicating liquors, in violation of the laws thereof, is hereby prohibited.
    Section 3.
    This article shall be inoperative unless it shall have been ratified as an amendment to the Constitution by conventions in the several states, as provided in the Constitution, within seven years from the date of the submission hereof to the states by the Congress.

    Section 2 does nothing except back up states that amend their state constitutions to ban alcohol. Since states dont do that and AFAK every state allows alcohol, that section has no effect.

  • Bee Tagger||

    The First Amendment Problems With Prosecuting Julian Assange And Wikileaks

    i think you mean "the first amended problems with prosecuting..."

  • Fist of Etiquette||

    No public pressure from Trump on McConnell vis a vis criminal justice reform. WH sources say POTUS endorsement was more a distraction from midterm losses than an expression of heartfelt support - https://t.co/K4KLYlSmfV
    — Eliana Johnson (@elianayjohnson) December 3, 2018

    White House sources, eh?

  • Bee Tagger||

    being drafted for early next year.

    another reason to end the draft

  • Rat on a train||

    Draft it and send it to Afghanistan.

  • Fist of Etiquette||

    An interesting case is coming before the U.S. Supreme Court week and could upend the country's more than 150-year-old policy of allowing people to be prosecuted by the feds and by state sources for the same crimes.

    How are federal prosecutors expected to make their nut if you the double jeopardy loophole away from them?

  • DiegoF||

    What sort of convoluted legal reasoning blocks the Executive Branch from making changes to the list of disqualifying conditions for military service? Is there a statute I am unaware of?

  • Don't look at me!||

    The TDS statute.

  • damikesc||

    Especially one that would constitute considerable cost with minimal, if any, benefits in so doing. Military service isn't a right last I checked.

  • loveconstitution1789||

    Article I, Section 8:
    [...]
    To make rules for the government and regulation of the land and naval forces;
    [....]

    Technically Congress makes the rules for land and naval forces and the President controls their use.

    Congress already made rules and it gives wide latitude for the President to administer those rules.

    Lefties clearly forget that Bill Clinton ended "Don't ask, don't tell" (DADT) was the official United States policy on military service by gays, bisexuals, and lesbians, instituted by the Clinton Administration on February 28, 1994, when Department of Defense Directive 1304.26 issued on December 21, 1993, took effect, lasting until September 20, 2011. [wikipedia]

    If Bill Clinton can do it, so can Trump.

  • loveconstitution1789||

    Sorry.... US Constitution, Article I, Section 8 in case that was not clear.

  • DiegoF||

    Oh of course. I knew Congress has the power constitutionally. It's not like issues of genuine foreign policy or anything; it's just an ordinary domestic bureaucratic matter where Congress writes the statute and the Executive administers within it. But as you point out, it's pretty clear that the statute that DoD rulemaking works within is incredibly wide. And just look at the list of disqualifying conditions! If I were out to reform them to widen qualifications for "readiness" or whatever, transgender would be way the fuck down on the list. The whole thing is such bullshit. But what else is new?

  • loveconstitution1789||

    As you say, the rules are so general that there is no reasons that a President does not have some say in who will carry out the orders of the Commander-in-Chief.

    Even CEOs have hire/fire abilities and can direct H.R. Departments in hiring/firing procedures and policies.

    The Lefties know that the majority of Americans dont give a fuck about dying on the Trans hill, so it cannot be a campaign issue.

    I would guess that medical costs for Trans military people are magnitudes higher than typical military members, who have not been wounded in combat.

  • Azathoth!!||

    Bill Clinton STARTED Don't Ask, Don't Tell.

    Obama finished it.

  • Bee Tagger||

    WH sources say POTUS endorsement was more a distraction from midterm losses than an expression of heartfelt support

    is there anything WH sources don't know?

  • Leo Kovalensky II||

    Basic economics?

  • loveconstitution1789||

    How bad TDS has affected people who hate Trump?

  • Chipper Morning Baculum||

    The ethics of liberty?

  • Rich||

    Their names?

  • loveconstitution1789||

    How little Mueller really has on anyone?

  • Bee Tagger||

    The feds are now targeting "social media influencers" who promote cryptocurrencies

    AND YOU ALL LAUGHED WHEN I WENT ON THE BACHELOR AND SAID MY JOB TITLE WAS "SOCIAL MEDIA INFLUENCER"

  • Chipper Morning Baculum||

    You misspelled "SOCIAL MEDIA INFLUENZA."

  • BestUsedCarSales||

    How dare you. I NEVER laugh at the Bachelor.

  • Don't look at me!||

    Have to disclose compensation for promoting crypto currency?
    You mean they weren't paid in bitcoin?

  • Rich||

    Mayweather agreed to pay $614,775 in fees as part his penalty and Khaled agreed to pay $152,725

    , both in Bitcoin.

  • Leo Kovalensky II||

    Their fines amount to between 200 or 200000 bitcoin, depending on the time of day they pay them.

  • Eddy||

    No, in regular currency - they dumped several boxes of pennies on the government's doorstep.

  • Rich||

    How about in captured CO2?

  • loveconstitution1789||

    Doesnt count. The "Party of science" does not consider CO2 removed from the atmosphere that way as anything good.

    You have to solve their problem, their way, or its a no go.

  • Chipper Morning Baculum||

    Did Mayweather make it rain with one dollar bills?

    At a rate of flicking one dollar bill per second, it would take him a whole week to pay the fine!

  • DiegoF||

    If Trump really is not pushing for a victory on sentencing reform, he is incredibly foolish. The situation with Kim K and that granny drug dealer was a good little PR win for him; this would be an incredibly powerful, permanent weapon in making his enemies seem foolish, petty and hypocritical. Plus he and the Congressional Republicans need a real accomplishment because Lord knows they ain't got much.

    Just unbelievably stupid if this is not pushed for. But then again, how hard did he push to curb spending, or for healthcare reform, or anything else? If only we had a president with his (not insubstantial) strengths who actually applied himself.

  • Fist of Etiquette||

    The celebrity so-called reformers refused to capitalize on the president's ego and work with him on it or generally give him any credit, instead basking in the glow of shunning all things Trump. Missed opportunities all around.

  • damikesc||

    Sad but true. It is exceptionally difficult to get any politician to take any REMOTELY controversial stance if they ONLY get the negatives with literally zero of the positives.

  • DiegoF||

    What opportunity? Few actually care. Kanye and Kim K, for all their perceived vapidness, apparently cared enough to thumb their nose at the sneers of their peers.

    If I see a single movie star at next year's Oscars stand up and say something about the Uighurs, and receive a rapturous ovation, I will take back everything I ever said and thought about those people. Can you imagine a Richard Gere in today's industry? Fuck, I wouldn't be surprised to hear he's been trying to make a comeback for the past ten years.

  • Bubba Jones||

    They are too busy blaming "America" for Hollywood's toxic sexual harassment.

  • Don't look at me!||

    McConnell Is the absolute worst. Who votes for someone like this and why?

  • Chipper Morning Baculum||

    He didn't even notice what he was voting for, he was in such a hurry to get to the beach to lay his eggs.

  • BYODB||

    Fortunately, sea gulls ate all his spawn this time around.

  • Enjoy Every Sandwich||

    Once a Congresscritter gets seniority and the influence that comes with it a lot of people see that as an overriding factor.

    I used to live in a rural area that had a totally horrible Republican representative. He was even a supporter of gun control, took money from what was then known as Handgun Control Inc., and voted for every gun control bill that came up. But people--many of whom had gun racks in their trucks--kept voting for him because he was a senior member of the House Armed Services Committee and he protected the jobs at military bases in the area.

  • Juice||

    What choice do they have?

  • Ordinary Person||

    They're called Republicans and yeah.

  • loveconstitution1789||

    McConnell is still magnitudes better than any Democrat.

  • Fist of Etiquette||

    No public pressure from Trump on McConnell vis a vis criminal justice reform.

    The president doesn't like to air dirty laundry in public.

  • Weigel's Cock Ring||

    This week in Congress, former FBI director James Comey will testify—in private, alas—before the House Judiciary Committee.

    If they had any balls whatsoever they would have him arrested and charged with perjury for his lies he told while under oath regarding the absurd "investigation" into Hillary's crimes as soon as he walked in the door.

    But they don't have any balls, and as an approved member of the Deep State the laws don't apply to him, so nautrally that will not happen.

  • Rich||

    "The Judiciary Committee will make available to Mr. Comey a full transcript of that testimony within 24 hours" or "as soon as is reasonably practicable." Comey is then "free to make any or all of that transcript public as he is free to share with the public any of the questions asked and testimony given during the interview."

    No reasonable prosecutor would make public such things.

  • Jerryskids||

    "The Judiciary Committee will make available to Mr. Comey a full transcript of that testimony within 24 hours"

    In the bottom of a locked filing cabinet stuck in a disused lavatory with a sign on the door saying 'Beware of the Leopard'.

  • BYODB||

    Ah ha, so you admit they were on display!

  • OpenBordersLiberal-tarian||

    The First Amendment Problems With Prosecuting Julian Assange And Wikileaks

    Assange and Wikileaks are agents of the hostile foreign power (Russia) that hacked our election and installed a President who may have been a Kremlin asset since 1987. When a bunch of dead white male slaveowners wrote the First Amendment, I doubt they could have predicted something like that happening centuries in the future.

    Furthermore, I learned in college it's a LIVING CONSTITUTION anyway. I'm sure the First Amendment can be read in an updated way that allows us to defend ourselves against attacks on our democracy that are no less serious than Pearl Harbor or 9 / 11.

    #RussiaHackedTheElection
    #(AndWikileaksHelped)

  • Don't look at me!||

    Top shelf material.

  • Chipper Morning Baculum||

    OBL is just parodying straight up progressives, as always.

  • OpenBordersLiberal-tarian||

    There is substantial overlap between what progressives believe and what we Koch / Reason libertarians believe. That's all. When my words sound like those of a standard Democrat, it's merely because the topic at hand is one on which progressives and libertarians should be united.

    And recall that I disagree with progressives on issues like the minimum wage (I'm against it), the morality of $50 billion individual net worths (I don't object), and money in politics (I support it).

  • Chipper Morning Baculum||

    I have yet to see you make a statement that distinguishes between progressives and Koch/Reason libertarians. You seem to think the only difference is minimum wage and limits on individuals' net worths. This reveals more about you than any "Koch/Reason libertarians."

  • Bubba Jones||

    Are you new here?

  • loveconstitution1789||

    An interesting case is coming before the U.S. Supreme Court week and could upend the country's more than 150-year-old policy of allowing people to be prosecuted by the feds and by state sources for the same crimes.

    Since the federal government was designed to be very tiny and limited, not the bloated bureaucracy it is, the Founders did not foresee that Americans would allow so many federal crimes. Especially "crimes" like drug prohibitions that clearly violate the US Constitution.

  • BestUsedCarSales||

    I have become an endless shilling machine, my God... how I have fallen from the guy who posted about pubic hair...

    Regardless, Andrew Heaton has a new podcast. Something's Off with Andrew Heaton

    It's been pretty good so far. Half hour episodes with a guest where they discuss issues and concepts of the day. He's particularly interested in analysis of the ways people think. That is, not what people think about things specifically, but the underlying paths of reasoning that they use. Lots of jokes about diners as well.

    Before Reason so callously killed Siskind and cancelled Mostly Weekly he as a beloved feature here. He had to flee to Dallas now and is doing a podcast. Support him if you will, he's a decent fella I think.

  • Chipper Morning Baculum||

    What happened to Siskind? Her condescending looks as she slapped Heaton were ever so hot.

  • BestUsedCarSales||

    She's the head writer of Star Talk with Neil Degrasse Tyson now.

  • Chipper Morning Baculum||

    If she slaps Neil Degrasse Tyson at least once each episode, I am sold.

  • Chipper Morning Baculum||

    Also, thanks for the reminder, BUCS. I listened to part of the first podcast but then forgot about it. I will listen some more. I wonder why he moved to Dallas. That place sucks.

  • BestUsedCarSales||

    Heaton's an Oklahoma boy, probably a city that is more affordable than NYC. More congenial than NYC. Closer to home, and with a better economy.

    I might be wrong about Dallas though. He mentions he lives in Texas now, and I thought he said Dallas, but it might be somewhere else. Regardless, when I visit Dallas this Christmas I will be sure to stalk him.

  • Chipper Morning Baculum||

    Well, I hope he is in Austin. Austin is a great city.

  • BestUsedCarSales||

    I really like Dallas every time I visit my sister. Very chill. Lots of Koreans. Good stuff.

  • DiegoF||

  • loveconstitution1789||

    Except for all the Lefties trying to fuck of the Texas parts that make Austin decent.

  • Chipper Morning Baculum||

    Mayweather agreed to pay $614,775 in fees as part his penalty

    Well, there goes Mayweather's budget for the next hour.

  • Rich||

    the Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC) announced charges in its very first cases involving crypto initial coin offerings (ICOs), fining music producer DJ Khaled and boxer Floyd Mayweather for social-media posts that "may have appeared to be unbiased, rather than paid endorsements" of new coins.

    "May have appeared to be"?!

    This is why we need "social media influencers" and the government -- to make *clear* what *is*.

  • Earth Skeptic||

    Oh noes! You mean my bestest (virtual) friends on the YouFaceTwit don't post me the truth about the uber coolest lives they claim to live, and tell me the stuff I really, really need to be as cool as them?

  • Bubba Jones||

    I take financial advice from athletes.

  • Sevo||

    "Critical climate talks begin with US on sideline"
    [...]
    "Separately, negotiators will discuss ramping up countries' national emissions targets after 2020, and financial support for poor nations that are struggling to adapt to climate change."
    https://www.sfgate.com/world/article/
    Critical-climate-talks-begin-with-US-
    on-sideline-13438087.php

    Thank you, Mr. Trump.

  • BestUsedCarSales||

    I was listening to an interview with a professor at CU here in Boulder. And he was so upset that we are no longer the leading force in climate change. That the rest of the world is so far ahead of us. And that we have given up our leadership position in the climate change debate.

    I don't really understand this obsession with being the worlds leading force in shit. Everyone tells us we do a horrible job of it. We don't have to police the world.

  • Diane Reynolds (Paul.)||

    We don't have to police the world.

    That went out of fashion ~1992.

  • loveconstitution1789||

    Some people really want to be TOP WOMEN and/or make sure there are lots of TOP MEN.

  • BYODB||

    We're no longer the 'leading force' in climate change because, spoiler alert, the rest of the planet that's actually industrial has laughed their way all the way to the forefront of manufacturing as we cut off our own balls in the name of CO2 emissions which are, another spoiler alert, less powerful greenhouse gasses than the H20 that makes up a massive proportion of the planets air and surface area.

    So, yeah, that professor is really upset that they have no fucking idea what they're talking about. You'd think that being paid to talk about things would help offset that, but I suppose not.

  • Ken Shultz||

    There were a number of huge things happening over the last few days--some of them don't seem to merit a mention here. One of the most interesting is the violent protests that have flared up in Paris.

    Over the last couple of years, I've spent a lot of time reading foreign news--and not just the journalism but the reactions to it in comments in various parts of the world. Perhaps the most interesting thing I've discovered is that people all over the world seem to have the same arguments about the same things we have--even though they have different cultures and historical contexts, which is fascinating.

    If I took arguments in Australia about Aboriginals, their place in society, why the government should or shouldn't work to change that, why they're discriminated against, how the government should work to improve their conditions, etc., etc. and changed the verbiage to American slang and made it about African-Americans, you wouldn't know it was people from another country talking about a minority that wasn't subjected to Southern slavery, hadn't gone through the American civil rights movement, etc., etc.

  • Ken Shultz||

    We may imagine that our political arguments are unique to our circumstances and culture, but they aren't. Study the revolutions of 1848, the fascist movements around the world in the first half of the 20th century, the political upheavals of 1968, and the populism around the world circa 2016, and you realize that we may filter our understanding of what's happening and why through the historical context of a particular location, but everywhere you go, everything always happens in the present, and we're all reacting to the same realities in the present tense.

    Populist movements in the U.S., Germany, England, and Paris are all exploding at the same time for more or less the same reasons. Macron is essentially a progressive. While the yellow jackets are rioting in the streets of Paris, the government announced that they were outlawing spanking your children--like it was a sugary soda ban or forcing people to bake cakes for gay weddings. It's all the same shit. Everywhere you look all over the developed world, you'll find progressive elitists who've gotten way too far ahead of the people they govern. It's hard to imagine Brexit, the yellow vest movement, Merkel's fall, or Donald Trump without it.

  • BYODB||


    We may imagine that our political arguments are unique to our circumstances and culture, but they aren't.

    Well, if you're limiting your readings to Westernized nations it wouldn't be at all surprising that they parrot the same talking points since they're all a bunch of progressive 'one world' collectivists. That, and we're all a bunch of former colonialist expansionists that trace our roots to Rome.

    If you read a newspaper from, say, Iran or China you might find some interesting tidbits that differ significantly from 'The West'.

  • Weigel's Cock Ring||

    Yep. Everywhere you look in the western world, more and more people are getting fed up with George Soros and his little socialist neo-feudalist minions desperately trying to turn us all into peasants.

    By the way, Welchie Boy is allegedly married to some French broad and they supposedly go there quite a bit, so you would think this story would be right in their wheelhouse.

  • Bubba Jones||

    Aboriginals are more like native Americans. Perhaps with less extermination?

  • BestUsedCarSales||

    No, they were probably more viciously exterminated than Native Americans. Hell, I've met Australians who still say that they should be finished off.

    One thing that is not unique about America is our interaction with the native population. This story has been told a million times all over the world, all throughout history.

  • DiegoF||

    What does everyone have against the Aborigines? They look pretty cool to me--if not, as Trevor Noah so rudely pointed out, particularly sexy.

  • Ken Shultz||

    That's the point. They have no historical context in common with African-Americans and yet those arguments about those two groups are more or less the same.

    Australia was a prison colony. The right there may argue that they're not responsible for how the crown treated aboriginals. If the Australian government owes aboriginals something, then maybe the British government owes the descendants of Scottish farmers who were sent to a prison colony because they couldn't pay their taxes.

    Sound totally different than in the U.S., right?

    The historical context is different, but the left in Australia wants the same things for aboriginals that the left in the U.S. wants for African-Americans--for the same reasons. Affirmative action, welfare reform, sentencing reform, police brutality, etc., etc., etc.--all these things are issues and support for and against them fall along predictable lines, the same political lines that shape these ideas in the U.S. They argue about hate speech, gun control, the drug war, etc., etc., just as we do--and along the same lines, too.

    Nothing has ever happened in the past, and nothing will ever happen in the future. Everything that happens always happens in the present. Thus spake Shultzathustra.

  • Ken Shultz||

    Our present circumstances dominate our thinking, and they're pretty much the same all over the world. A racial minority within a democracy finds themselves in the same circumstances everywhere, and so does the majority. That's probably why disconnected social movements (from the revolutions of 1848 to the populists of 2016) seem to be coordinated. It isn't about their individual histories. It's about their shared circumstances. Why wouldn't they all have the same arguments at the same time?

  • loveconstitution1789||

    +100 Ken.

  • loveconstitution1789||

    For lefties it boils down to control and remaining in power.

    Blacks in the USA are used just like I am sure Aborigines are used for political gain. I would bet money that there is an Aboriginal Reverend Al Sharpton.

  • Diane Reynolds (Paul.)||

    Hacked.com reports that "several SEC officials have also said that Ethereum is considered a non-security."

    All crypto currency is a non-security. That's its fucking point.

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