If you are inured to disgusting images, are you more or less likely to pick a front-row seat at the guillotine? More or less likely to vote a “liberal” or “conservative” ticket?
To a surprising degree, a recent strand of experimental psychology suggests, our political beliefs may have something to do with a specific aspect of our biological makeup: our propensity to feel physical disgust…
The brains of liberals and conservatives reacted in wildly different ways to repulsive pictures: Both groups reacted, but different brain networks were stimulated. Just by looking at the subjects’ neural responses, in fact, Montague could predict with more than 95 percent accuracy whether they were liberal or conservative…
If a movie is based on a book that is based on a real experiment that later actually happens in real life, is it “real” or “fiction.” The Corbett Report steps through the looking glass in search of information about Sirhan Sirhan, the shooting of RFK, CIA mind control experiments, and the blurring of the line between real life and fantasy.
… You want to know about the state of our union? It’s downright scary. Consider for yourself.
Americans have no protection against police abuse. It is no longer unusual to hear about incidents in which police shoot unarmed individuals first and ask questions later. What is increasingly common, however, is the news that the officers involved in these incidents get off with little more than a slap on the hands.
Americans are little more than pocketbooks to fund the police state. If there is any absolute maxim by which the federal government seems to operate, it is that the American taxpayer always gets ripped off. This is true, whether you’re talking about taxpayers being forced to fund high-priced weaponry that will be used against us, endless wars that do little for our safety or our freedoms, or bloated government agencies with their secret budgets, covert agendas and clandestine activities.
Americans are no longer innocent until proven guilty. Due in large part to rapid advances in technology and a heightened surveillance culture, the burden of proof has been shifted so that the right to be considered innocent until proven guilty has been usurped by a suspect society in which we are all potentially guilty of some wrongdoing or other.
Americans no longer have a right to self-defence. In the wake of various shootings in recent years, “gun control” has become a resounding theme. Those advocating gun reforms see the Second Amendment’s right to bear arms as applying only to government officials. Incidentally, the Trump Administration has done more to crack down on Second Amendment rights than anything the Obama Administration ever managed.
Americans no longer have a right to private property. If government agents can invade your home, break down your doors, kill your dog, damage your furnishings and terrorize your family, your property is no longer private and secure—it belongs to the government. Likewise, if government officials can fine and arrest you for growing vegetables in your front yard, praying with friends in your living room, installing solar panels on your roof, and raising chickens in your backyard, you’re no longer the owner of your property.
Americans no longer have a say about what their children are exposed to in school. Incredibly, the government continues to insist that parents essentially forfeit their rights when they send their children to a public school. This mindset that young people are essentially wards of the state to do with as government officials deem appropriate is in defiance of the children’s constitutional rights and those of their parents.
Americans are powerless in the face of militarized police. While police forces across the country continue to be transformed into outposts of the military, with police agencies acquiring military-grade hardware in droves, Americans are finding their once-peaceful communities transformed into military outposts, complete with tanks, weaponry, and other equipment designed for the battlefield.
Americans no longer have a right to bodily integrity. Court rulings undermining the Fourth Amendment and justifying invasive strip searches have left us powerless against police empowered to forcefully draw our blood, strip search us, and probe us intimately. Accounts are on the rise of individuals—men and women—being subjected to what is essentially government-sanctioned rape by police in the course of “routine” traffic stops.
Americans no longer have a right to the expectation of privacy. Despite the staggering number of revelations about government spying on Americans’ phone calls, Facebook posts, Twitter tweets, Google searches, emails, bookstore and grocery purchases, bank statements, commuter toll records, etc., Congress, the president and the courts have done little to nothing to counteract these abuses. Instead, they seem determined to accustom us to life in this electronic concentration camp.
Americans no longer have a representative government. We have moved beyond the era of representative government and entered a new age, let’s call it the age of authoritarianism. History may show that from this point forward, we will have left behind any semblance of constitutional government. It is not overstating matters to say that Congress, which has done its best to keep their unhappy constituents at a distance, may well be the most self-serving, semi-corrupt institution in America.
Americans can no longer rely on the courts to mete out justice. The U.S. Supreme Court was intended to be an institution established to intervene and protect the people against the government and its agents when they overstep their bounds. Yet through their deference to police power, preference for security over freedom, and evisceration of our most basic rights for the sake of order and expediency, the justices of the Supreme Court have become the architects of the American police state in which we now live.
I haven’t even touched on the corporate state, the military industrial complex, SWAT team raids, invasive surveillance technology, zero tolerance policies in the schools, overcriminalization, or privatized prisons, to name just a few, but what I have touched on should be enough to show that the world is indeed a dangerous place.
Yet what you won’t hear in any State of the Union address—what the president and his cohorts fail to acknowledge—and what I make clear in my book Battlefield America: The War on the American People—is that it’s the government that poses the gravest threat to our freedoms and way of life, and no amount of politicking, parsing or pandering will change that.
Having started on Monday, the US Army continues its war drills across the greater Los Angeles metropolitan area through Saturday with the goal of enhancing Army Special Forces skills by “operating in urban environments”, Army Special Operations Command said in a statement.
Residents around Los Angeles may hear sounds associated with the field training exercise, including helicopters and weapon simulations, according to the statement.
“The local terrain and training facilities in Los Angeles provide the Army with unique locations and simulates urban environments the service members may encounter when deployed overseas,” the Army told CBS.
Downtown Los Angeles residents were shocked Monday night when a fleet of Boeing A/MH-6M Little Bird and Sikorsky UH-60 Black Hawk helicopters swooped in around them.
— Uche (@ThatsUche) February 7, 2019
A commercial parking lot across the street from the Regal Cinemas L.A. LIVE 14, at 1000 W Olympic Blvd, was the epicenter of some intense war simulations Tuesday night.
MILITARY EXERCISE: The U.S. Army is conducting military training in the greater Los Angeles and Long Beach areas tonight until Feb. 9. Downtown LA residents are reporting seeing helicopters and hearing explosions. @MizSkellington pic.twitter.com/8Mmgn2FdTK
— CBS Los Angeles (@CBSLA) February 5, 2019
Newchopper4 Bravo was overhead as Special Forces performed training exercises in the parking lot, then were extracted by helicopters before taking off over the 110 Freeway while police blocked nearby intersections.
— NBC Los Angeles (@NBCLA) February 6, 2019
There were other field training exercises that were on the perimeter of the city, away from populated areas and toward the San Pedro Bay port Tuesday night and into early Wednesday morning.
The Army leased space in an industrially zoned area around the Port of Los Angeles near Terminal Island for field training exercises Wednesday night, according to Phillip Sanfield, a spokesman for the L.A. port. Port operations at Long Beach, the second largest port in the US, were not affected, port spokesman Lee Peterson told the Los Angeles Times.
Sanfield said residents living on houseboats in marinas around Wilmington were notified they might hear helicopters, explosions, and simulated assault rifle fire.
“There is no replacement for realistic training. Each location selected enables special operations teams and flight crews to maintain maximum readiness and proficiency, validate equipment and exercise standard safety procedures. The training is essential to ensure service members are fully trained and prepared to defend our nation overseas.”
The Army Special Operations Command conducts multiple urban field training exercises around the country, said Lt. Col. Loren Bymer, a spokesman for the command group.
“It wouldn’t be unheard of to train in Boston or Miami,” he said.
“It takes a lot of planning and coordination to do this safely.”
This is not the first time residents of a major metropolitan area across the US have experienced a military exercise. For instance, in 2015, Texas residents prepared for Jade Helm 15, an army training exercise which took place in multiple states.
As to what exactly the Army was preparing for by simulating war drills on the streets of Los Angeles was beyond our comprehension. One thing that is obvious: the Army is preparing for more conflict, whether with a foreign adversary or, more troubling, social unrest on the streets of America?