- How stable are the world’s democracies? While there is a certain level of complacency among the citizens of most developed countries in the security of their freedom, at least one Harvard historian sees some glaring warning signs. Citing a “freedom index” compiled by Freedom House, Harvard historian Yascha Mounk notes that after rising steadily from the mid-1970s through the early 2000s, the number of countries globally that are considered “free” have been on a steady decline ever since.
- Political scientists have a theory called “democratic consolidation,” which holds that once countries develop democratic institutions, a robust civil society and a certain level of wealth, their democracy is secure.
- For decades, global events seemed to support that idea. Data from Freedom House, a watchdog organization that measures democracy and freedom around the world, shows that the number of countries classified as “free” rose steadily from the mid-1970s to the early 2000s
Read more at:How Stable Are The World’s Democracies? – “Warning Signs Are Flashing Red”
- In the latest scandal set to rock Germany, Spiegel reports that a German intelligence officer has been arrested over a suspected Islamist plot to bomb the agency’s headquarters in Cologne, raising fears that the spy agency itself has been infiltrated. The 51-year-old official had made a “partial confession” to the plot, Spiegel reports.
- The suspect attempted to pass on “sensitive information about the BfV (Germany’s domestic security agency), which could lead to a threat to the office”, an official told the newspaper. The spy agency first became aware of the man’s activities about four weeks ago according to Der Spiegel.
- A spokesman for the Bundesverfassungsschutz (BfV) declined to provide details on the man’s position at the agency or say when he joined. He also declined to comment on a report in Die Welt newspaper that the 51-year-old had planned to explode a bomb at the agency’s central office in Cologne.
Read more at German Intelligence Officer “Arrested In Islamist Plot” To Blow Up Spy Headquarters:
- The battle for one of the most contested Syrian cities in the nation’s long-running civil war, Aleppo, is approaching its climax. According to Reuters, the Syrian army and its allies announced the capture of a large swath of eastern Aleppo from rebels on Monday – by some estimates as much as 40% of the militant held part – in an accelerating attack that threatens to crush the opposition in its most important urban stronghold.
- In a major breakthrough in the government’s push to retake the whole city, regime forces captured six rebel-held districts of eastern Aleppo over the weekend, including Masaken Hanano, the biggest of those. On Sunday, the 13th day of the operation, they also took control of the adjacent neighborhoods of Jabal Badra and Baadeeen and captured three others.
Read more at:Assad On Verge Of Biggest Victory Since Start Of Syrian War With Imminent Capture Of Aleppo
- Former Dallas Federal Reserve Bank President Richard Fisher recently gave a speech identifying the Federal Reserve’s easy money/low interest rate policies as a source of the public anger that propelled Donald Trump into the White House. Mr. Fisher is certainly correct that the Fed’s policies have “skewered” the middle class. However, the problem is not specific Fed policies, but the very system of fiat currency managed by a secretive central bank.
- Federal Reserve-generated increases in money supply cause economic inequality. This is because, when the Fed acts to increase the money supply, well-to-do investors and other crony capitalists are the first recipients of the new money. These economic elites enjoy an increase in purchasing power before the Fed’s inflationary policies lead to mass price increases. This gives them a boost in their standard of living.
Read more at:Ron Paul Tells Trump: “To Really ‘Make America Great Again’, End The Fed!”
- Update: No guns were used, it was a person with a butcher knife.
- Firefighters say at least seven people have been transported after the active shooter was reported on campus, NBC reports. A report by the Associated Press says two of the people transported are in stable condition. There are no details on the other five victims.
An alert was issued for an active shooter on Ohio State University’s Campus, Monday morning. Ohio State University Police sent the alert at about 9:56am.
The alert said, “Buckeye Alert: Active Shooter on campus. Run Hide Fight. Watts Hall. 19th and College.”
A following alert told students to “continue to shelter in place. Wait for Police officers directions. Please contact Police / 9-1-1 only if you have information.”
- Update 3: The FBI is now on the scene of the incident:
- Update 2: The Columbus Fire Department adds that seven have been taken to hospitals from Ohio State University. AP adds that 2 are stable, but there are no details on the other 5.
Read more at:Ohio State Warns “Run, Hide, Fight” As Active Shooter At Large On Campus, 4 Reportedly Shot or Stabbed??
- The “war on terror” has simultaneously been a war on truth. For fifteen years—from 9/11 to Saddam Hussein’s “weapons of mass destruction” and “al Qaeda connections,” “Iranian nukes,” “Assad’s use of chemical weapons,” endless lies about Gadaffi, “Russian invasion of Ukraine”—the governments of the so-called Western democracies have found it essential to align themselves firmly with lies in order to pursue their agendas. Now these Western governments are attempting to discredit the truthtellers who challenge their lies.
- Russian news services are under attack from the EU and Western presstitutes as purveyors of “fake news.” Abiding by its Washington master’s orders, the EU actually passed a resolution against Russian media for not following Washington’s line. Russian President Putin said that the resolution is a “visible sign of degradation of Western society’s idea of democracy.”
Read more at:“Governments Are Running Out Of Excuses” Paul Craig Roberts Exposes “The Western War On Truth”
- Last week, in a troubling development for privacy advocates everywhere, we reported that the UK has passed the “snooper charter” effectively ending all online privacy. Now, the mainstream media has caught on and appears to be displeased. As AP writes today, “after months of wrangling, Parliament has passed a contentious new snooping law that gives authorities — from police and spies to food regulators, fire officials and tax inspectors — powers to look at the internet browsing records of everyone in the country.”
- For those who missed our original reports, here is the new law in a nutshell: it requires telecom companies to keep records of all users’ web activity for a year, creating databases of personal information that the firms worry could be vulnerable to leaks and hackers. Civil liberties groups say the law establishes mass surveillance of British citizens, following innocent internet users from the office to the living room and the bedroom.
Read more at:These Are The 48 Organizations That Now Have Access To Every Brit’s Browsing History