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Op-Ed: Political criminality, January 6, RICO, and recognizing realities or bye-bye America



Op-Ed: Political criminality, January 6, RICO, and recognizing realities or bye-bye America

Fights over the country’s debt limit have become common in the US Congress – Copyright AFP Ben STANSALL

The first anniversary of January 6 2020 has brought up some very bad memories and a lot of angst about unsolved serious problems. The rapid decline of American democracy into a farcical patchwork of corrupt states and a politicized judiciary is making a truly hideous situation a lot worse.

Failure to recognize the driving forces is a major, potentially nationally fatal, issue. Read enough news, and you’d swear that Jan 6 and its obscene fallout was purely political, ideologically driven, and some sort of legitimate national dichotomy.

It’s nothing of the sort.

Ask yourself:

  • Since when do a herd of barely literate social non-entities suddenly have such rabid feelings about things they can’t even spell, let alone understand?
  • Where did all the sudden conveniently packaged targeted hate come from? Even the rhetoric is basically a macro, using exactly the same terminology and the same wrong capitalizations of words? All you need to do is insert names and the spam writes itself.
  • Where did all the money come from to fund this gigantic garbage collection of fake anything and everything?
  • Who’s paying for online hate? How many paid trolls does it take to look like a bona fide political campaign? To the extent that people who should know better think it’s legitimate?
  • Why can’t America recognize standard old-style McCarthyism when it sees it? It’s not like you haven’t had enough experience, is it?
  • Where’s the money coming from? Who’s paying for the Front Row Joes and anti-vaxxers to take time off to campaign for insanity?
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If this is real politics, Mcdonald’s is a vegan global conspiracy. There’s no reality involved in any of it. Made up issues, solutions to problems that never existed, The Big Boring Endless Lie, it’s all there.

It’s all about money.

If there’s one thing every human being on Earth can agree with, it’s that politicians have far too much power. Most of the misery in this world is politically generated. If it wasn’t for whacko policies like inaccessible prices for health, housing, and education, the human race would be doing a lot better.

Policies cause misery. Ideologies simply justify policies. The economic policies, however, are always money-driven. The core issue is systemic political criminality, based on money. Getting access to money, preferably vast amounts of public money, isn’t exactly a new thing in politics.

In America the Super PACs pull in vast amounts of money. So do fundraisers. The sheer scale of money in US politics is almost unbelievable.

Where there’s money, there’s crime. Lots of it, and usually white-collar organized crime. These guys aren’t charities. They were involved in the sub-primes disaster in 2008 which practically wiped out the entire US middle class financially. They don’t steal jeans and on-sell them. They handle billions.

The US political system could well be the world’s biggest money laundry. (Although some political money might be more accurately described as dry-cleaned.) Where the money comes from, and where it goes, who knows? Someone obviously does. “So the country gets destroyed, so what? We’re making big money and have nice houses. We even get the occasional movie made about us. Whoopee.”

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Here’s a rhetorical question and some equally rhetorical associations:

Are politicians immune to money?

  • How about two-bit nobody lobbyists?
  • Judges and other political sycophants?
  • Chicken-faeces sourced organizations like ALEC?
  • Folksy gerrymander and other anti-democracy political enablers?
  • Damn near anyone or anything anywhere near this sort of money?
  • What about quaint little multi-billion tax-free organizations?  

(I have a Ph.D. in subtle innuendo, in case you haven’t already guessed.)

This is the best-funded insanity in history. It’s just as much systemic fraud as any sort of politics. It’s a type of racketeering. This is real RICO laws stuff, just in a political context. Bona fide money should have an audit trail going back to Adam’s birth certificate; this sort of money doesn’t. If the political money is sourced illegally, and it’s far more than likely a lot of it is, the entire racket is effectively criminal in nature.

You don’t even need to get out of bed to make money in this environment. You can be an adorable influential little maggot with a phone. That is quite literally all it takes.

How NOT to solve the problems 101

What strikes me as very strange is that people who are in a position to know a lot better aren’t making these connections. Everyone knows how intrinsically corrupt the US political system is.

So, to effectively solve none of the problems:

  • Don’t ask where the money comes from.
  • Make no attempt to find out where it comes from.
  • Don’t question motives for lunatic policies, statements, or anything else.
  • Put the interests of criminals above the interests of over 300 million people.
  • Cram the Supreme Court with very malleable very small souls.
  • Pretend to be a Christian and evangelize the money.
  • Grovel convincingly and pretend to be a real commentator.
  • Don’t even mention The Emperor’s New Toilet Paper.
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Cute, huh? I don’t buy any of this crap at any price, discount, or otherwise. How can so many actual, hyper-stressed-for-decades bill-paying, bullet-dodging Americans pretend not to know all this?  The criticism is way too superficial. The critics are routinely missing unmissable targets.

That’s your problem. Either solve it, or it will permanently solve you. Remember what Lincoln said about “some of the people”. Point being – They really are fools, rich, dumb, or otherwise.

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TikTok’s Working on a New, Opt-In Function to Show You Who Viewed Your Profile



TikTok's Working on a New, Opt-In Function to Show You Who Viewed Your Profile

I’m not entirely sure what value this might bring, but TikTok is reportedly working on bringing back the option to see who viewed your profile in the app over the preceding 30 days, which would provide more transparency over user interest.

As you can see in these screenshots, uncovered by app researcher Kev Adriano (and shared by Matt Navarra), TikTok looks to be testing an opt-in functionality that would enable you to see who’s checking out your TikTok profile, while users would also be able to see when you’ve checked out their profile as well when this feature is switched on.

Which TikTok used to have, as a means to increase connections in the app.

TikTok profile views notification

As you can see here, TikTok used to provide a listing of people who’d checked out your profile, with a view to helping you find others to follow who may have similar, shared interests. TikTok removed the functionality early last year, amid various investigations into its data sharing processes, and with several high-profile cases of TikTok stalkers causing real-world problems for platform stars, it made sense that it might not want to share this information anymore, as it likely only increases anxiety for those who may have concerns.

But I guess, if stalkers wanted to check out your profile they wouldn’t turn the feature on, so maybe, by making it opt-in, that reduces that element? Maybe.

I don’t know, I don’t see a heap of value here, and while I can understand, when an app is starting out, how this sort of awareness might help to increase network connections, I’m not sure that it serves any real value for TikTok, other than providing insight into who’s poking around, and likely increasing concerns about certain people who keep coming back to check out your profile again and again.

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Maybe there’s a value for aspiring influencers, in reaching out to potential collaborators who’ve checked out their stuff, or maybe it works for hook-ups, if that’s what you want to use TikTok for, which is why the opt-in element is important.

But much like the same feature on LinkedIn, mostly, it seems pretty useless. I mean, it’s somewhat interesting to know that somebody from a company that you’d like to work for checked out your profile, but if they did, and they didn’t feel compelled to get in touch, who really cares?

There is a limited value proposition here, in that getting in touch with those who did check out your profile could result in a business relationship, similar to the above note on potential collaborators on TikTok. But I’d be interested to see the actual percentage of successful contacts made is as a result of these insights.

I can’t imagine it’s very high – but maybe, if you give users the choice, and they explicitly opt-in, there is some value there.

Seems like stalker tracking to me, and potential angst and conflict as a result.

There’s no official word from TikTok as to whether this option will ever be released at this stage.

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‘Flurona’ is a great example of how misinformation can circulate



'Flurona' is a great example of how misinformation can circulate

This transmission electron microscope image shows SARS-CoV-2—also known as 2019-nCoV, the virus that causes COVID-19—isolated from a patient in the U.S. Virus particles are shown emerging from the surface of cells cultured in the lab. The spikes on the outer edge of the virus particles give coronaviruses their name, crown-like. Image captured and colorized at NIAID’s Rocky Mountain Laboratories (RML) in Hamilton, Montana.
Source – NIAID, CC SA 2.0.

In early January, Israel confirmed its first case of an individual infected with both the seasonal flu and COVID-19 at the same time, authorities reported. The two infections were found in an unvaccinated pregnant woman who had mild symptoms.

At the rime, the Times of Israel said, “Some reports suggested this marked the first such dual case in the world, but reports of patients with both flu and COVID-19 surfaced in the US as early as spring 2020.”

And it was the Times of Israel that helped the story to go viral by using a catchy, made-up name – “flurona” – and reporting that this is the “first” such case in the country, which some people read as the first case ever.

One news outlet went about amplifying the anecdotal report into “a new nightmare to keep us awake at night.” All the hype over this supposedly new and nightmarish disease did nothing more than fuel the amount of misinformation already bogging down social media platforms.

Scientific American suggests that physicians and scientists just don’t seem to be able to get the right message across to the public about what is real, what is treatable, and what is downright false.

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Yes, you can catch the flu and Covid

Let’s look back a bit to the start of the pandemic. In March 2020, hospitals were being overrun with patients. At that time, COVID testing was still rather sluggish and expensive. So doctors often ordered several tests for patients, trying to identify — or eliminate from suspicion — other possible infections.   

And yes, any number of patients were found to have not only COVID-19 but nearly 5 percent of patients tested had another viral respiratory infection, too. At first, doctors worried more for these patients, whose immune systems were fighting two battles at once. 

“What we found was actually that patients who had Covid plus another infection — they had lower rates of inflammation in their body and were less likely to be admitted to the hospital,” said Dr. Sarah Baron, a physician who helped author a study in the Journal of Antimicrobial Chemotherapy to describe the findings.

While the study was small in the number of patients involved, it may offer an intriguing look at how one virus suppresses the effects of another – something called viral interference.

Researchers have known about viral interference since the 1960s when a group of scientists noticed that a live vaccine against polio and other enteroviruses also seemed to protect against unrelated viral respiratory diseases like influenza.  

For the week ending December 25, 2021, the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention reported that 6.2 percent of people tested for flu were positive, and 1,825 people were admitted to U.S. hospitals with flu that week.

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So I would suggest to everyone that first – remember there are many reliable news sources on the Internet. Secondly, if a story you read sounds outrageous, take a few minutes to research it. You may just find out how inaccurate it may be.

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12 Helpful SEO Tools for Your Brand in 2022 [Infographic]



12 Helpful SEO Tools for Your Brand in 2022 [Infographic]

Search engine optimization can be a complicated process, but every year, more tools and options are added to help simplify and streamline your efforts, which can provide you with valuable insights and guidance that hasn’t previously been available so easily.

The right tools can transform your strategy, and as such, it’s worth keeping track of the latest tool additions as you look to learn more about what people are searching for, and how you can create content and offers to align with those behaviors.

Which is where this new listing from PageTraffic comes in. The below infographic outlines 12 newer SEO tools that are worth a look in 2022.

More insight is always better, and these apps may just become a key pipeline to better understanding for your business.

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