Javier Milei Delivers Argentina’s First Surplus in Over a Decade—and U.S. Media is Silent

Argentines witnessed something amazing last week: the government’s first budget surplus in nearly a dozen years.

The Economy Ministry announced the figures Friday, and the government was $589 million in the black.

Argentina’s surplus comes on the heels of ambitious cuts in federal spending pushed by newly-elected President Javier Milei that included slashing bureaucracy, eliminating government publicity campaigns, reducing transportation subsidies, pausing all monetary transfers to local governments, and devaluing the peso.

Milei’s policies, which he has himself described as a kind of “shock therapy,” come as Argentina faces a historic economic crisis fueled by decades of government spending, money printing, and Peronism (a blend of national socialism and fascism).

These policies have pushed the inflation rate in Argentina, once one of the most prosperous countries in Latin America, above 200 percent. Today nearly 58 percent of the Argentine population lives in poverty, according to recent study.

And Milei rightfully blames Argentina’s backward economic policies for its plight—policies that, he points out, are spreading across the world.

“The main leaders of the Western world have abandoned the model of freedom for different versions of what we call collectivism,” Milei said in a recent speech in Davos. “We’re here to tell you that collectivist experiments are never the solution to the problems that afflict the citizens of the world—rather they are the root cause.”

The revelation that Argentina has done something the US government hasn’t done in more than two decades—run a budget surplus—seems like a newsworthy event.

Yet to my surprise, I couldn’t find a word about it in major US media—not in the New York Times, the Associated Press, the Washington Post, or Reuters. (The New York Sun seems to be the only exception.)

I had to find the story in Australian media! (To be fair, the Agence France Presse also reported the story.)

One could argue that these outlets just aren’t very interested in Argentina’s politics and economics, but that’s not exactly true.

The Associated Press has covered Argentinian politics and Milei extensively, including a recent piece that reported how the new president’s policies were inducing “anxiety and resignation” in the populace. The same goes for Reuters and the other newspapers.

A cynic might suspect these media outlets simply don’t wish to report good news out of Argentina, now that Milei is president.

Indeed, in the wake of the news that Milei’s reforms had already resulted in a budget surplus, both Reuters and the AP ran articles highlighting a new study under the headline “Poverty in Argentina Hits 20-year High.”

Why US media would choose to ignore Milei’s budgetary accomplishments and highlight Argentina’s soaring poverty, which is decades in the making, is a difficult question to answer.

The decision could stem from the fact that these outlets have described Milei as a “far-right libertarian,” and a “Trump-like” figure (even though Trump, unlike Milei, is not a libertarian or classical liberal).

Another possibility is that these media institutions are suffering from something known as “media capture.”

Media capture can come in various forms and has numerous definitions, but the Center for International Media Assistance (CIMA) defines it as “a form of governance failure that occurs when the news media advance the commercial or political concerns of state and/or non-state special interest groups controlling the media industry instead of holding those groups accountable and reporting in the public interest.”

The most obvious examples of media capture would be outlets refusing to cover stories due to explicit threats of retaliation from powerful actors.

Maybe a sponsor says they’ll pull advertising if you run a story about the side effects of their product, or maybe a powerful Hollywood director threatens reprisals if you report his sexual abuses. Perhaps a certain Royal Family threatens to cut off interview access to your network if you run an interview with a sex trafficking victim who says she was victimized by a member of that Royal Family.

These are all very real scenarios of captured media, and such situations can have a profound impact on independent journalism.

“Captured media can go from vigilant watchdog to toothless public relations machine, ignoring the news of the day,” CIMA notes.

This is why the government takes such an interest in media. The economist Murray Rothbard famously wrote that because “its rule is exploitative and parasitic,” the state has a great incentive to shape opinion and ideology, which are the source of power.

Few tools are more effective at shaping thought than media, which is no doubt why the greatest tyrants of the 20th century went to great lengths to control it.

Constitutional systems of course require more subtlety. Which is why, as Rothbard wrote, the state purchases “the alliance of a group of ‘Court Intellectuals,’ whose task is to bamboozle the public into accepting and celebrating the rule of its particular State…”

The state has various methods to “purchase” the allegiance of media and others who can shape opinion, and some of these are downright shocking.

Writing for Rolling Stone in 1977, legendary reporter Carl Bernstein exposed records showing that hundreds of US journalists had been paid by the CIA over years to do work on the Agency’s behalf.

“Some of these journalists’ relationships with the Agency were tacit; some were explicit. There was cooperation, accommodation, and overlap. Journalists provided a full range of clandestine services,” wrote Bernstein, who along with Bob Woodward broke the Watergate scandal.

He continued:

Some of the journalists were Pulitzer Prize winners, distinguished reporters who considered themselves ambassadors without-portfolio for their country. Most were less exalted: foreign correspondents who found that their association with the Agency helped their work; stringers and freelancers who were as interested in the derring-do of the spy business as in filing articles; and, the smallest category, full-time CIA employees masquerading as journalists abroad. In many instances, CIA documents show, journalists were engaged to perform tasks for the CIA with the consent of the managements of America’s leading news organizations.

To be clear, I’m not suggesting the CIA is paying the above-mentioned media organizations not to write flattering stories about Milei.

Media capture, as mentioned, comes in various forms. And my hunch is that it typically involves applying pressure and offering incentives in more subtle ways than overt quid pro quos.

What I am saying is that no institution is more effective at media capture than the government, which has even more resources and power than Hollywood directors and royal families. And chief among the state’s many agendas is its own self-preservation. This puts the state at odds with free-market libertarians like Javier Milei who wish to create a more prosperous society by reducing (or eliminating) government’s influence over our lives. And this is the reason a resounding free-market success story in Argentina is likely unwelcome news to both the state and the Court Intellectuals who serve it.

The problem is, free-market economics is the only force that can save Argentina from proceeding further into an economic death spiral.

From countries like Hong Kong and Ireland to former Soviet Bloc countries such as Estonia and beyond, free markets have transformed struggling and impoverished economies with what Adam Smith long ago recognized as the surprisingly simple recipe for prosperity: “peace, easy taxes, and a tolerable administration of justice.”

It will do the same in Argentina, given the opportunity—whether media choose to cover it or not.

What do you think of Javier Milei? Is he a mad libertarian? Is he the saviour of Argentina? Does he need a better barber? Tell us in the comments below. 

This article was originally published on FEE.org. Read the original article

AUTHOR

Jonathan Miltimore is the Editor at Large of FEE.org at FEE.

EDITORS NOTE: This Mercator column is republished with permission. ©All rights reserved.

Poll Shows Biden Unpopular among Voters as Immigration, Inflation Worsen

A sprawling new survey is revealing that voters are getting sick of the Biden administration, and Trump’s popularity is holding strong. According to the latest Harvard CAPS/Harris poll, President Joe Biden’s approval rating is floundering, underwater at 45% (23% strongly approve, 22% somewhat approve), with his disapproval rate (39% strongly disapprove, 15% somewhat disapprove) remaining fairly steady since January of 2022. Nearly half of voters (48%) said that Biden is getting worse as a leader, while 27% (mostly Democrats) said he’s improving and 25% said he’s pretty much the same.

Furthermore, voters are disappointed with Biden’s performance on key issues. The 81-year-old president’s approval rating is low regarding his management of immigration (35%), inflation (39%), the economy (43%), rising crime rates (41%), and others. The only area where voters said Biden has done a good job was in responding to COVID-19. When asked what Biden’s biggest achievement has been as president, more voters (30%) said he hasn’t had a big achievement than voters (28%) who agreed that lowering the cost of prescription drugs is the biggest feather in Biden’s cap.

The Biden administration’s biggest failure is, according to voters, its border policy. Forty-four percent of voters (including about a third of Democrats and nearly half of Independents) believe Biden’s biggest failure was overseeing “an open borders policy and a historic flood of immigrants.” Runners-up for the title of “biggest failure” include weak leadership, “rampant inflation,” “a shameful withdrawal from Afghanistan,” and a failure to tackle surging crime rates.

Immigration, inflation, and the economy are the top issues that voters are concerned about heading into the next presidential election. Thirty-six percent of voters expressed concern over immigration, 33% over inflation and price increases, and 24% over the economy and jobs. Inflation was rated the most important issue to voters personally with 42% of voters responding that they have been personally impacted by rising prices, up four percentage points just since January. Immigration and crime were next, at 18% and 11% respectively. Additionally, 54% of voters said their personal financial situations were suffering under Biden and upwards of 70% said they fear that inflation is “here to stay.”

On immigration, 63% of voters said that the border crisis is worsening (including 42% of Democrats and 65% of Independents) and a staggering 71% said that the U.S. needs tougher laws against illegal immigration (including 56% of Democrats and 76% of Independents). A majority of voters also believe the federal government already has the power and authority it needs to fix the illegal immigration crisis and that Department of Homeland Security (DHS) Secretary Alejandro Mayorkas is simply not enforcing existing border control laws. Sixty-two percent of voters (including nearly half of Democrats) support impeaching Mayorkas “under the charge that he is willfully not enforcing immigration laws and securing the border…”

Also according to the survey, Biden would lose against former President Donald Trump if the election were held today. Forty-eight percent of voters said that they would pick Trump over Biden, with 9% saying they weren’t sure. When that 9% were asked which way they lean, Trump would beat Biden 53% to 47%. Significantly, Trump would earn 52% of the Independent vote and even 13% of the Democratic vote.

When third-party players are introduced, Trump still comes out on top, with former Democrat Robert F. Kennedy Jr. taking a substantial portion of the vote (nearly 10%) that would otherwise go to Biden. Trump also garnered nearly 80% support among GOP voters for the Republican presidential nomination, with former South Carolina governor Nikki Haley earning a paltry 14%. Biden would also beat Haley (41% to 39%, 19% undecided) if the two were to go head-to-head.

Even if Trump were to be convicted of the numerous indictments leveled against him by leftist prosecutors and Biden’s Justice Department, voters would still likely go for him over Biden. A whopping 54% of voters said they’d vote for Trump even if he were convicted of inciting the riot at the U.S. Capitol on January 6, 2021. Only 46% said they’d back Biden, which is actually down from 52% just a month ago. Fifty-two percent of voters said they would still vote for Trump if he were convicted of election interference charges in Georgia, but voters were split on whether to vote for him if convicted of allegedly mishandling classified presidential documents, with 50% backing Trump and 50% backing Biden.

A clear majority of voters (58%) also believe that the prosecutions against Trump are politically motivated. Even a surprising 42% of Democrats said they think that the Biden administration is “using the legal system in biased ways to take out a political opponent.” Voters were split when asked if Trump poses a “threat to democracy,” with 50% saying he doesn’t and 50% saying he does, which is down from 52% a month ago.

When asked if Trump will impact the nation “for the better,” 56% of respondents said yes, while 44% said he’s “a danger to democracy and will hopelessly divide the country if elected.” Nearly 60% of respondents also agreed with the statement, “I miss Donald Trump’s policies on the economy, immigration and crime,” and 62% agreed that Democrats “are trying to unfairly scare the voters over Donald Trump by labeling him as a dictator.”

When asked, nearly 60% of respondents said that they think Trump did a good job as president — that includes a majority in every age range polled, a majority among urban, suburban, and rural voters, 53% of independents, and even 29% of Democrats. Trump was also rated among the political figures with the highest net favorability, while Biden, his son Hunter, and other Democrats like Vice President Kamala Harris, Senate Majority Leader Chuck Schumer (D-N.Y.), Representative Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez (D-N.Y.), California Governor Gavin Newsom (D), and others received some of the lowest scores.

This comes as numerous other polls show Trump leading Biden in November and concern over illegal immigration skyrocketing.

AUTHOR

S.A. McCarthy

S.A. McCarthy serves as a news writer at The Washington Stand.

To learn more please visit: BIDENOMICS IS BAD ECONOMICS

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EDITORS NOTE: This Washington Stand column is republished with permission. All rights reserved. ©2024 Family Research Council.


The Washington Stand is Family Research Council’s outlet for news and commentary from a biblical worldview. The Washington Stand is based in Washington, D.C. and is published by FRC, whose mission is to advance faith, family, and freedom in public policy and the culture from a biblical worldview. We invite you to stand with us by partnering with FRC.

Are You Sick and Tired of Sending Your Tax Dollars to a Federal Government that Doesn’t Give Damn about You?

As we the tax paying citizens of America approach the 2024 tax season, we are witnessing a growing anger against the federal government.

Washington, D.C. doesn’t give a damn about you, they just want your money to spend on everything and anything that keeps them in power.

All three branches of government are wasting our money in different ways.

Big Government Writ Large

Let us look at a list of our top criticisms and recommendations of the Big Federal Government spending troika.

Truths and recommendations (a short list):

  1. They tax us more and more and then spend furiously on things that do nothing for the American citizen. BTW, when was the last time you saw a tax cut?
  2. The growing national debt, now reaching $34+ trillion. Printing money isn’t the answer, cutting government spending, except for mandatory items like Social Security, Medicare, and Medicaid, is.
  3. Spending more and more money to support illegal aliens, a.k.a. illegal migrants/drug cartel members/foreign terrorists/child traffickers/drug traffickers, who are coming across our borders by the thousand each and every week.
  4. Spending billions on foreign wars, with the exception of fully supporting the state of Israel. It’s time to defund foreign wars and use that money to build up our own prosperity.
  5. Buying foreign oil and natural gas when we have abundant amounts right under the ground and off the shores of America.
  6. Investing in private green companies that waste our tax dollars and then go broke.
  7. Bailing out students who took out federal government loans to go to college or university. What are we teaching our children about taking responsibility for their own debts? We need to return student loans back to the private sector.
  8. Using our tax dollars to fund foreign entities, e.g. the PLO, and even terrorists organizations, like Hamas, via our monetary support of the United Nations and U.N.R.W.A.
  9. Funding federal department that are unconstitutional, e.g. the Department of Education.
  10. Stop over paying our federal elected officials, their staff, appointed members of the various departments and their staffs and the growing numbers of federal employees, e.g. the IRS armed agents. Cut the pay at every level.
  11. Wasting our tax payer dollars to attack we the people, via a two-tiered and militarized justice system, that seeks to destroy our Constutional Republican form of government.
  12. Finally, making us taxpayer fund a bloated Executive Branch, Congressional and Supreme Court staff. Cut each branch in half and you will see half the damage done to we the people.

The Bottom Line

Many today are addicted to a bloated, corrupt, and wasteful big government.

It’s past time to cut government and with it government spending.

Time to implement the Fair Tax and get rid of the federal income tax.

We live in the free state of Florida. Florida gets its income from a state 6% sales tax. Florida has a multi-billion dollar surplus.

Get the idea?

Time to defund, defang and damn the federal government to hell.

©2024. Dr. Rich Swier. All rights reserved.

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POST ON X: Here is how big government is working to stay in power.

The introduction of Corporate Fascism in The Netherlands

13 years ago, Mr. Mark Rutte started to govern in my country Holland as Prime Minister. Though he is a member of the Dutch Conservative Party, he’s in his heart not for individual freedom at all.

Right now, he is at the end of his last term. Elections for a new Dutch Government have already been held, and so he is on his way out.

The Netherlands changed a lot during his reign. And not for the better.

For example, the total amount of taxation per citizen, was 13 years ago about 35% of the average income. Now it’s up to 40%! That means that if you have an income of 20,000 Euro then you pay a total of taxes of that amount to the value of 8,000 Euro. This makes you a part-time slave of the Dutch Government.

There is a name for the system with which Mark Rutte governs. It’s not a pretty term: Corporate Fascism.

Corporate Fascism means that the CEO’s of the largest companies and a small group of powerful politicians rule over the citizens in total cooperation. They suppress the common man and empty his pockets with the power of the full state behind them.

Corporate Fascism can be found in many countries in Europe. It has replaced Social Democracy, otherwise known as the Welfare State.

In The Netherlands we see after 13 years of corporate fascism, that a huge amount of nice small shops with quality products and good personal service, have closed their doors. There are very few places where you can still buy artisan made traditional high quality products.

It’s gotten hard these days to make enough money simply to buy your groceries, clothes and pay your monthly rent, mortgage, electricity bill, phone bill et cetera. That’s strange, because you pay most money to big firms that produce their products in factories at almost no costs at all. The CEO’s of these companies are therefor FAKE capitalists. Competition is an illusion.

In a country with corporate fascism, there is an elite class that doesn’t do any productive work at all. These profiteers just sit behind computer screens and produce nothing. They enrich themselves in an extreme way.

Mr. Mark Rutte, who introduced Corporate Fascism in The Netherlands, now is considered the number 1 candidate for leading NATO.

I think that you should be warned.

When he can operate at a global level, he will do a serious effort to introduce Corporate Fascism on a global scale.

©2024. Matthys van Raalten. All rights reserved.

Biden Campaign Co-Chair Suggests Deporting Illegal Immigrants Would Hurt The Economy

Democratic Texas Rep. Veronica Escobar on Friday suggested that deporting illegal immigrants would have adverse economic consequences.

President Joe Biden and former President Donald Trump both visited the border and delivered remarks on Thursday. Escobar, co-chair of Biden’s 2024 reelection campaign, criticized Trump’s rhetoric and underscored the economic importance of immigrants in the workforce, advocating against deporting them on “CNN Newsroom With Jim Acosta.”

“Democrats have been willing over the decades to not just address border security as a whole, but also to address our workforce needs and to make sure that we remain a country of immigrants. Immigration is good for us economically,” Escobar asserted. “Republicans have created the current situation and we need solutions. But what Trump is signaling is horrific. He really does want to take us back to an era where people feared being in their own country simply because they belong to a minority group.”

WATCH:

Illegal immigration has massively increased under Biden as millions of migrants from around the world cross the southern border. One of Biden’s first actions in office was to issue executive actions revoking Trump-era border policies, including the Muslim travel ban and the border wall project.

“He‘s willing to violate the Constitution, violate our civil rights, violate constitutional rights,” Escobar told Acosta. “And let me tell you, it is impossible to deport every undocumented person in this country. There simply are not the resources nor is it advantageous to us. I mean, I’m sure you’ve seen the reports, Jim, that it has been immigrant labor, the immigrant workforce that has actually propped up our economy. The challenge we face is that Congress has not created legal pathways for them.”

AUTHOR

JASON COHEN

Contributor.

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Illegal Immigrants Continue to Commit Violent Crimes as Sanctuary Cities Reassess Policies

Violent crimes committed by illegal immigrants continue to rise throughout the country, resulting in American citizens being attacked, raped, and murdered. Experts are noting that these are the same migrants who receive taxpayer-funded health care, housing, education, food, and more.

The most high-profile story making news is last week’s murder of 22-year-old Laken Riley. She was a young nursing student at Augusta University who never returned from her jog Thursday morning because she was brutally murdered by who police believe to be a man named Jose Antonio Ibarra, who is also an illegal immigrant.

Not only does Ibarra have a criminal record in the U.S. since arriving illegally, but his brother does as well. Ibarra has been charged with theft, child endangerment, and murder, among other crimes. And his brother, Diego Ibarra, along with stealing, was recently caught giving police a fake green card with two different birth dates on it. This happened after he was stopped by police for driving while drinking beer — which the migrant told the officer was his seventh since he’d been behind the wheel.

On Monday, police in Maryland charged Nilson Trejo-Granados, one of five suspects, for the first and second-degree murder of two-year-old Jeremy Poou Caceres. Before being arrested for murder, Trejo-Granados was charged with theft in March 2023.

On February 20, Angel Matias Castellanos-Orellana allegedly raped a 14-year-old girl at knifepoint, and on February 25, he repeatedly stabbed a man in the face and back, demanding the man give him his property. According to The Post Millennial, “He was arrested and booked on armed robbery, aggravated battery, first-degree rape, and aggravated assault and a federal ‘ICE’ detainer was also issued for him.”

In addition, last month a group of alleged illegal immigrants viciously attacked New York City police officers in Times Square. As crimes committed by illegal immigrants skyrocket, some sanctuary cities are starting to reassess their policies. In fact, it was this beating in NYC that caused Mayor Eric Adams (D) to say during a townhall meeting, “Those who are committing crimes, we need to modify the sanctuary city law. If you commit a felony, a violent act, we should be able to turn you over to [Immigration and Customs Enforcement] ICE and have you deported.”

And the Big Apple isn’t the only city backtracking. According to The Daily Wire, “The city council of Aurora, which sits just east of Denver, approved a resolution in a 7-3 vote on Monday demanding that large groups of migrants not be transported there since it is unable to fund new services for migrants or homeless people.”

In addition to a call to “secure our nation’s border,” the resolution said: “The City Council affirms remaining a Non-Sanctuary City and asserts the City does not currently have the financial capacity to fund new services related to this crisis and demands that other municipalities and entities do not systematically transport migrants or people experiencing homelessness to the City.”

Family Research Council President Tony Perkins said on “Washington Watch” Wednesday that these harsh and dangerous circumstances only highlight “the damage inflicted by the Left’s public policy decisions [and] their open borders.” Congressman Rich McCormick (R-Ga.), who serves on the House Foreign Affairs Committee and the House Armed Services Committee, agreed, noting that these policies have allowed “some nefarious people … across the border.”

McCormick pointed out that Venezuela currently has a record low crime rate. “Why do you think it is?” he asked. It’s because Venezuela is “getting rid of their criminals” by sending them to the U.S. through the open border, he said. “Bad people are crossing the border. … We have record numbers of deaths from fentanyl. We have record amount of child trafficking, rape, [and] murder. … I’ve been talking about it for years. This is a significant problem.”

He added, “If you’re coming to this country and committing crimes, and then you continue to commit crimes and have been released, what are we doing?” A major issue facing America, McCormick shared, is that these illegal immigrants and violent criminals are being released as if they’re “regular citizens.” But “they’re not,” he said. “They’re here illegally. … This should be an ICE issue,” because when an illegal immigrant gets arrested, “they get sent back to their country. That’s the way it’s supposed to be. That’s the law. Imagine following the law.”

Perkins noted that the Left is notorious for also making claims that we shouldn’t “politicize the murder of a 22-year-old student” like Laken Riley by connecting it to illegal immigration. But, he wondered, “How else do we look at this? This is their policies. This is the outcome that we’re seeing from their open border policies. How else can you look at it?”

“There’s so many ramifications for lawlessness that we’ve allowed to take place at our southern border,” Perkins stated. And that will only end, McCormick concluded, if we continue to “fight the good fight.”

AUTHOR

Sarah Holliday

Sarah Holliday is a reporter at The Washington Stand.

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EDITORS NOTE: This Washington Stand column is republished with permission. All rights reserved. ©2024 Family Research Council.


The Washington Stand is Family Research Council’s outlet for news and commentary from a biblical worldview. The Washington Stand is based in Washington, D.C. and is published by FRC, whose mission is to advance faith, family, and freedom in public policy and the culture from a biblical worldview. We invite you to stand with us by partnering with FRC.

Is American Pork Ending Up In The Bellies Of Chinese Soldiers?

Communist China’s military could be reaping the benefits of the takeover of a U.S agricultural giant.

America’s largest pork producer was exporting massive quantities of pork to its Chinese “sister company” as it stockpiled food for the Chinese military, according to a Daily Caller News Foundation review of corporate records and Chinese state-run media reports.

Smithfield Foods, owner of roughly 150,000 acres of U.S. land and operator of dozens of feed mills and production plants, has shipped hundreds of thousands of tons of pork to its China-based parent company WH Group and sister company Shuanghui Investment and Development Co. (Shuanghui) since being acquired in 2013, according to corporate and Chinese government records as well as state-run media reports.

Shuanghui has extensive ties to the People’s Liberation Army (PLA), which it touts on its website, and is responsible for developing food for China’s military to use on the battlefield, according to the PLA-sponsored China Military News.

Shuanghui also operates a food “mobilization center” for the PLA in Henan province, and has done so since 2009, according to a 2022 Shuanghui news release. Shuanghui’s mobilization center stockpiles food, including pork, to meet the PLA’s emergency response needs, and Chinese state-run reports indicate that Shuanghui has distributed food from this stockpile to Chinese soldiers on several occasions in recent years.

A December 2023 report from the Luohe municipal government in Henan province indicates the military stockpile is still active and under Shuanghui’s management.

While Shuanghui doesn’t disclose where the pork it supplies the PLA originates from, it’s very likely that at least some U.S. pork product is being supplied to the PLA, according to Brian O’Shea, a former military and intelligence analyst.

“My opinion would be that the Chinese government is giving this superior U.S. pork to their soldiers,” O’Shea told the DCNF based on his understanding of Smithfield’s central role in Shuanghui’s pork supply chain and Shuanghui’s extensive relationship with the PLA.

“At these mobilization centers, there’s going to be a Smithfield pile and a Chinese domestic pork pile, and the Chinese domestic pork is most likely going to the civilians, whereas the superior pork is going to the Chinese military,” O’Shea said.

Neither Smithfield nor Shuanghui responded to multiple requests for comment.

‘A Unified State’

WH Group acquired Smithfield in 2013 for $7.1 billion. At the time, WH Group Chairman Wan Long said the acquisition would allow his companies to “meet the growing demand in China for pork by importing high-quality meat products from the United States,” adding the merger “provided Smithfield the opportunity to expand its offering of products to China through Shuanghui’s distribution network.”

The DCNF recently reported that WH Group’s chairman and four other executives are Chinese Communist Party (CCP) members. WH Group’s chairman and several top executives also hold, or previously held, positions with the Chinese government, the DCNF found.

WH Group’s leadership includes both Shuanghui and Smithfield executives, according to Reuters.

In 2013, the U.S.-China Economic and Security Review Commission’s annual report characterized Smithfield’s acquisition by WH Group as “part of a broader trend of Chinese global investment in farm assets or food technologies.”

“China’s acquisitions in agriculture and other sectors are being driven by the desire to secure higher volumes of safe products and, in the long term, access to advanced production and processing technologies,” the commission wrote in its report.

“We’ve got to remember that China is a unified state,” Gordon Chang, distinguished senior fellow at the Gatestone Institute, told the DCNF. “It operates under the direction of the Communist Party, which demands absolute obedience from all individuals and all entities.”

Since 2013, Smithfield’s exports to China have exponentially increased. Shuanghui constructed a $110 million Smithfield-branded factory in China in 2015 that exclusively processes U.S.-raised Smithfield pork, and the company developed an e-commerce portal in 2017 that sells Smithfield products.

In the wake of these developments, Smithfield’s pork exports to China exploded from roughly 83,000 tons in 2018 to approximately 335,000 tons in 2020, according to S&P Global Market Intelligence data obtained by the DCNF.

Click here to view S&P Global Market Intelligence infographic U.S. Exports of Pork Linked to Smithfield (tons)

“There was an unusual increase in sales of entire swine carcasses to China during 2019,” according to a U.S. Department of Agriculture Economic Research Service report. “This increase reflects the retooling of at least one U.S. Smithfield Foods plant to produce carcasses for shipment to a plant in China that had excess processing capacity due to the shortage of hogs in the country.”

Shuanghui “used excess capacity in its Chinese plant to make processed products from the carcasses,” the report added.

Between 2015 and 2020, 80% of Shuanghui’s imported meat came from Smithfield, Chinese state-run media outlet The Paper reported. Shuanghui characterized Smithfield as its “primary” pork supplier that same year.

Since then, Smithfield has continued to export hundreds of thousands of tons of pork to China. S&P Global Market Intelligence’s data shows Smithfield sent 242,672 tons of pork to China in 2021 and 124,886 tons in 2022. Smithfield exports to China hit 101,791 tons in 2023, the data shows.

A November 2023 financial briefing published by Chinese state-run firm Guosen Securities, which used data from compliance reports, forecast that Shuanghui will continue to rely on Smithfield pork imports for the foreseeable future.

“Shuanghui Development’s meat product offerings are expected to rely on the importation of Smithfield Foods’ Western products, and the synergy of the two large platforms will increasingly arise,” Guosen Securities reported.

‘My Love Spills Into Every Army Base’

While Smithfield has been sending pork to Shuanghui, the Henan-based company was supplying the PLA, according to corporate records seen by the DCNF. In fact, Shuanghui’s relationship with the PLA predates WH Group’s acquisition of Smithfield.

In 2008, the Chinese government proposed that large enterprises assist in creating provincial military stockpiles for various goods like food at so-called “mobilization centers,” and, shortly thereafter, Shuanghui officials applied for the firm to establish a “Non-Staple Foods Mobilization Center,” according to a PLA Daily article that was reposted by Chinese news outlet Sina.

The PLA first called upon Shuanghui’s mobilization center in June 2009 while it was still under construction, asking for assistance in delivering 10 types of foods to Chinese soldiers approximately 125 miles away, PLA Daily reported.

Shuanghui’s mobilization center “integrates the military with the civilian” and “blends peacetime and wartime” in order to “guarantee an emergency response,” according to an archived December 2009 company news release.

That same month, Shuanghui head Wan Long, who also heads WH Group, presided over the opening ceremony of the firm’s mobilization center, which several high-ranking Chinese military personnel attended, according to the archived post.

By 2015, the mobilization center reportedly employed more than 2,200 veterans. These veterans routinely simulate emergency situations, such as delivering food goods to front-line positions in wartime, according to state-run China News.

Shuanghui President Ma Xiangjie, who sits on WH Group’s board and is a CCP member, serves as the mobilization center’s director, according to a company announcement from December 2022. In that same announcement, the company touted that the PLA had named Ma Xiangjie as one of Henan’s “Top 10 Military Supporters.”

Company and Chinese military records reviewed by the DCNF indicate that PLA officers have inspected Shuanghui’s mobilization center multiple times in recent years. During a December 2021 inspection, PLA officers presented Ma Xiangjie with a ceremonial banner that read: “My heart is bound to the Great Wall of steel, my love spills into every army base.”

A December 2022 Shuanghui announcement states the company’s mobilization center had at some point prior “successfully developed an ABC set meal series of military rations.” The U.S. Army describes A-rations as “perishable foods,” B-rations as “nonperishable foods” and C-rations as a “balanced meal in a can.”

Wan Long and Ma Xiangjie did not respond to multiple requests for comment.

‘Food Security’

Chinese social media posts show Shuanghui has on multiple occasions distributed pork from its mobilization center to Chinese military personnel.

In February 2020, for instance, Shuanghui announced it had donated meat to the PLA as well as Wuhan military medical staff working on the front lines of the COVID-19 pandemic. Shuanghui’s announcement featured photographs of the firm’s truck delivering boxes of pork sausages to PLA soldiers.

Smithfield exported at least 335,411 tons of pork to China in 2020, S&P data shows.

Chinese government documents show that Smithfield was sending pork directly to Shuanghui during the pandemic. China’s General Administration of Customs reporting it had rejected approximately 27 tons of Smithfield “frozen bone-in pork” sent to a Shuanghui subsidiary sometime before August 2020, citing an issue with the shipment’s certificate of goods.

Shuanghui has also bragged about donating medical supplies to the PLA during the pandemic.

In fact, People’s Daily, which is the CCP’s official media arm, reported in February 2020 that Shuanghui had launched a global campaign to procure medical supplies for the Chinese military. China’s State Council supported Shuanghui by helping medical supplies obtained abroad pass smoothly through customs, People’s Daily reported.

“In the early stages of the COVID-19 outbreak, WH Group’s subsidiary Shuanghui Development purchased anti-epidemic materials, including protective clothing, isolation gowns, masks and goggles overseas to support front-line medical staff in Hubei Province,” reads an English-language version of an April 2020 WH Group release. “Shuanghui also donated living materials and epidemic prevention materials to military medical workers at Wuhan Huoshenshan Hospital through the Luohe military sub-district.”

Moreover, the People’s Daily article also features a photo of a Smithfield truck outside a warehouse with a caption reading “overseas procurement” and credits Shuanghui for the picture.

Other images show what appears to be a Caucasian man moving rectangular boxes purportedly full of medical supplies with a forklift and a UPS plane on a tarmac beside pallets of boxes. Another photo appears to show workers and delivery trucks at Shuanghui’s headquarters preparing to deliver supplies to the Chinese military, as reported in a Shuanghui corporate release less than a week later.

“The Chinese Communist Party is increasingly focused on acquiring, illicitly or otherwise, agricultural technologies and supply chains,” Wisconsin Republican Rep. Mike Gallagher, chair of the House Select Committee on the CCP, told the DCNF. “We must strengthen our food security before it is too late.”

‘Chinese Communist Control’

Shuanghui also apparently agreed to supply a Chinese state-owned defense firm with Smithfield products, according to a 2022 Shuanghui Chinese social media post to which the company’s website also links.

During a November 2022 conference in Guangdong province, Shuanghui signed a strategic partnership agreement with the Aviation Industry Corporation of China (AVIC) to manufacture customized products in order to “support the rapid development of China’s aviation industry,” according to a company social media post.

Photos from the November 2022 event appear to show Smithfield bacon alongside other Shuanghui products involved in the defense contractor deal. The U.S. government sanctioned AVIC in 2021 “for operating or having operated in the defense and related materiel sector of the economy of the PRC.”

“People are just now starting to understand the consequences of the naïve policymaking that dominated Washington for the past couple decades,” Florida Republican Sen. Marco Rubio told the DCNF. “Chinese communist control of American businesses is a challenge we have to confront before a crisis.”

AUTHOR

PHILIP LENCZYCKI

Daily Caller News Foundation investigative reporter, political journalist, and China watcher. Twitter: @LenczyckiPhilip

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‘Another Day, Another Regulation’: DOE Continues War On Appliances, Locks In Regs For Clothes Washers And Dryers

The Biden administration finalized regulations for residential clothes washers and dryers on Thursday.

The Department of Energy (DOE) announced that it is locking in the “energy efficiency” regulations for residential clothes washers and dryers, marking the latest development in the Biden administration’s wide effort to shape markets to decidedly favor more energy efficient appliances in the coming years. The agency stated that the rules will reduce carbon dioxide emissions and save consumers money on their water and electricity bills over the course of many years.

“For decades, DOE’s appliance standards actions for clothes washers and dryers have provided loads of savings for American families while also decreasing harmful carbon emissions,” Energy Secretary Jennifer Granholm said of the finalized regulations. Her agency contends that the rules could save Americans as much as $39 billion on their energy and water bills, while also reducing about 71 million metric tons worth of carbon dioxide emissions over the next three decades.

The regulations increase the minimum water and energy efficiency levels that washers and dryers must meet down the road in order to remain on shelves. In many cases, more energy efficient units do not work as effectively or quickly as older and less efficient models, O.H. Skinner, the executive director of the Alliance for Consumers, told the Daily Caller News Foundation.

“Another day, another regulation from the Biden administration to remove products from the shelves and limit what people can buy in the name of their ideological goals. At this point, consumers have gotten the message: if it moves or has a motor and it is in your house, Biden would like it to cost more and probably be less effective,” Skinner told the DCNF. “Their primary rationale is that it will cost you less in the electricity bill, but don’t worry, in places like California, politicians are busy trying to drive up electricity bills, too.”

In a January opinion relating to a separate legal battle over DOE appliance energy efficiency rules for dishwashers and clothes washers, the U.S. Fifth Circuit Court of Appeals notably pointed out that some appliances favored by Biden administration policy “make Americans use more energy and more water for the simple reason that purportedly ‘energy efficient’ appliances do not work.”

Beyond clothes washers and dryers, the Biden DOE has also promulgated energy efficiency regulations for common household appliances like dishwashers, water heatersfurnaces and pool pump motors. The administration has also spent hundreds of millions of dollars on helping state and municipal governments pursue building codes that phase out natural gas infrastructure and favor electrification.

The DOE did not respond immediately to a request for comment.

AUTHOR

NICK POPE

Contributor.

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Another weapon of mass destruction: Central Bank Digital Currency

Liberty Counsel has launched a petition to pressure Congress to prevent the CBCD trainwreck by passing two all-important bills: H.R. 1122, and Senate Bill 887.

Liberty Counsel continues to fight the good fight.

Those interested can sign their petition or send faxes to pressure Congress to stop the planned Central Bank Digital Currency that would make cash obsolete, and bind us to a Social Credit score system as in Communist China.

Here’s what Liberty Counsel Chairman Mat Staver has to say:

“A CBDC in the hands of government spells doom for American liberty. Suddenly, politicians and government agents won’t simply “suggest” you follow their increasingly bizarre policies like replacing beef with bug protein or buying electric cars whose batteries poison the earth. With a CBDC, the government will be able to dictate these decisions by preventing you from using your own money to buy a steak or a tank of gas.”

“Americans have already experienced tyranny firsthand, thanks to COVID lockdowns and the planned destruction of the U.S. economy. We MUST NOT allow them to take the next step in financially enslaving Americans to their bizarre progressive policies.”

Liberty Counsel is working with several legislators to stop Joe Biden’s CBDC plans in their tracks.

Link below:

We need YOUR HELP to compel Congress to pass the CBDC Anti-Surveillance Act (HR 1122 and S 887). Please, fax Congress NOW to protect YOUR financial future.

©2023. Cherie Zaslawsky. All rights reserved.

Please follow Cherie on her Substack: https://cheriezaslawsky.substack.com/

Texas AG Sues Pornhub for Failing to Verify Age of Users

Texas’s attorney general has filed a lawsuit against pornographic website Pornhub for failing to obey state law requiring pornography websites to confirm the age of users before granting access to their sites. Experts welcomed the news as a step toward protecting minors from sexual exploitation.

Last year, Texas enacted House Bill 1181 into law, which requires pornography sites to verify that a user is 18 or older before allowing access to the site. The lawsuit against Pornhub, filed by Texas Attorney General Ken Paxton (R), alleges that Aylo Global Entertainment, the parent company of Pornhub, is liable for up to $1.6 million “plus $10,000 a day from September of last year to the date of the lawsuit.”

“Instead of abiding by Texas law requiring purveyors of obscene sexual material to institute age verification systems, the company immediately presents minors who access their websites with pornographic content,” Paxton stated in a press release. “I look forward to holding any company accountable that violates our age verification laws intended to prevent minors from being exposed to harmful, obscene material on the internet.”

Texas is one of eight states to enact laws requiring porn sites to verify the age of their users in recent years. The other states with age verification laws include Arkansas, Louisiana, Mississippi, Montana, North Carolina, Utah, and Virginia.

Pornhub, one of the most visited porn sites in the world, has been embroiled in a series of lawsuits in recent years. Two class action lawsuits have been certified against the company for profiting from child sexual abuse material and sex trafficking. Pornhub is also the target of a lawsuit on behalf of nine women who were secretly filmed while changing in a locker room in which the footage ended up on the site. As of 2023, Pornhub is the defendant in at least 10 lawsuits involving 256 alleged victims.

In a 2020 New York Times exposé, columnist Nicholas Kristof described how Pornhub is “infested with rape videos. It monetizes child rapes, revenge pornography, spy cam videos of women showering, racist and misogynist content, and footage of women being asphyxiated in plastic bags.”

In comments to The Washington Stand, Benjamin Bull, general counsel at the National Center on Sexual Exploitation, confirmed Pornhub’s penchant for allowing illegal material to fester on the site for monetary gain.

“From our own litigation and investigation, Pornhub is a criminal sex trafficking enterprise pretending to be a legitimate business,” he remarked. “It’s about time state law enforcement required them to comply with a common-sense law that protects children from sexual abuse and harm.”

Mary Szoch, director of the Center for Human Dignity at Family Research Council, expressed hope that Texas’s lawsuit will cause the pornographic site to reconsider its exploitive practices.

“Pornhub doesn’t take the exploitation of anyone seriously,” she told TWS. “They don’t care about the women and men whose lives are ruined when they are trafficked and forced to create pornography. They don’t care about the men and women whose brains are literally deteriorating because of pornography addiction. They don’t care about the relationships and marriages ruined because of pornography. And they don’t care about children who will be caught up in pornography addiction and never able to live freely because of it. All Pornhub cares about is increasing profits and spreading their evil filth everywhere. So maybe, Pornhub will care about the over $3.5 million they will owe the people of Texas.”

Szoch continued, “AG Paxton and the people of Texas should be commended for holding Pornhub accountable, and they should continue going after Pornhub until it is completely shut down. There is nothing good about pornography. Nine out of 10 boys and six out of 10 girls are exposed to pornography before the age of 18. This evil drug robs people of their ability to love. It must be stopped.”

AUTHOR

Dan Hart

Dan Hart is senior editor at The Washington Stand.

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The Washington Stand is Family Research Council’s outlet for news and commentary from a biblical worldview. The Washington Stand is based in Washington, D.C. and is published by FRC, whose mission is to advance faith, family, and freedom in public policy and the culture from a biblical worldview. We invite you to stand with us by partnering with FRC.

Smartfood Gets Dumb: Bud Lights Itself With “LGBTQ” GLAAD Bag

Move over, Bud Light and Dylan Mulvaney. There’s a new brand in town finding woke ways to reduce its market share.

I learned this shopping in a local supermarket Wednesday, when I noticed a rack with unusually colorful bags of Smartfood popcorn. Since the brand has been introducing new varieties in recent years, this wasn’t surprising. What did raise my eyebrows was that the bags were a sexual devolutionary special edition roll-out for, it seems, Valentine’s Day, but were still around. (Is it too much to hope it’s because they’re not selling well?)

Much like Dylan Mulvaney, the bags are brazen and “in your face,” unabashedly advertising a partnership the brand now has with GLAAD. Originally formed in 1985 and then known as the Gay & Lesbian Alliance Against Defamation, GLAAD has now expanded its sexual devolutionary horizons and pushes the MUSS (Made-up Sexual Status, aka “transgender”) agenda along with its original obsessions. In other words, this group is as toxically left-wing as they come.

This doesn’t stop Smartfood Stupidfood from boldly proclaiming on its bags, “Smartfood & GLAAD, together for love.” (Pro tip for the company: You spelled “lust” wrong.) A picture of the bag is embedded in my tweet below.

After a bit of research, I learned that Stupidfood actually forged this partnership in 2022. I don’t know if it received much press back then, but I don’t remember hearing about it. Regardless, it’s amazing that a company will wade into a divisive, bruising culture-war battle by making common cause with one of the high-profile combatants. Have any of its executives ever heard of Dale Carnegie’s book How to Win Friends and Influence People?

Note again, too, that GLAAD is absolutely on the cutting edge of societal devolution; it’s a danger to all of us, including, of course, kids. Consider how it boasts about its MUSS advocacy, which it indicates goes back to 1998. In its media guide, it issues instructions such as “Always use a transgender person’s chosen name” and “Ask for the pronoun a person uses, and use it” (know here that there are recently invented pronouns such as “ze” and “zir.” Also know that people don’t have pronouns — languages do.)

GLAAD is also all-in on having males masquerading as females participate in the latter’s sports. In other words, if it’s sexual and bad for society, GLAAD is all for it.

And Stupidfood is all for GLAAD. In an announcement of its support, it makes a “pledge to donate $150,000 to LGBTQ+ initiatives.” This is chump change for the brand, of course, especially considering that it has long been owned by Frito-Lay, itself a subsidiary of PepsiCo. But it may lose far more than that in sales if its radical GLAAD association gets enough exposure.

I say “may” because I realize its market isn’t identical to what, for example, Bud Light’s was. Bud Light’s sales have collapsed, as it isn’t subject to a boycott, but a walkaway. It may never recover.

Whatever the outcome with Stupidfood, it certainly deserves the same fate. What are these executives thinking? Is the GLAAD alliance the result of “woke capital,” of entities such as Blackrock and its CEO, Larry Fink, pressuring the company into embracing politically correct policies? Is it a function of younger Millennials entering corporate America with their woke-academia priorities? Is it both?

Perhaps Stupidfood perceives that our culture has long been drifting “left” (i.e., toward moral disorder) and is merely betting on the future. This would, though, risk losing the present.

Regardless, for sure is that they’ve lost my business. I did like their overpriced popcorn, though I’d only buy it on sale. But now I wouldn’t take it for free. They can join with the cultural devolutionaries if they want, but they won’t be doing it with my money. I’m out.

Contact Selwyn Duke, follow him on MeWe or Gettr or log on to SelwynDuke.com

©2024. Selwyn Duke. All rights reserved.

New York Times ‘Journalist’ Accused of Participating In Oct. 7th Hamas Attacks Wins Journalism Award

The New York Times proudly announced last Monday that it had “won three George Polk awards, including two for its coverage of the Israel-Hamas war.” Those prestigious journalism awards went to “Samar Abu Elouf and Yousef Masoud of The Times” for “photojournalism for their photographs of the conflict from inside Gaza, capturing the horrific toll of Israel’s airstrikes on civilians, including the death and injury of many children.” The Times neglected to mention, however, one telling detail: Masoud has been unmasked as a member of Hamas who participated in the Oct. 7 jihad massacres inside Israel.

The Paper of Record shows no sign of firing Masoud or returning the George Polk award he won, but the Jerusalem Post had the story on Thursday, noting that the media watchdog Honest Reporting had “highlighted his accreditation to a photo provided to the Associated Press, with the caption, ‘Palestinians wave their national flag and celebrate by a destroyed Israeli tank at the Gaza Strip fence east of Khan Younis southern Saturday, Oct. 7, 2023.’ How had Masoud gotten on the scene so quickly, so as to be in a position to take this picture? Honest Reporting “questioned Masoud’s explanation of his presence that he’d been woken up at 5.30 a.m. by rocket fire even though the firing only started an hour later.”

What’s more, “Masoud’s name was included in an investigative report from November showing that journalists from leading news outlets, including The New York Times, AP, Reuters, and CNN, joined Hamas terrorists from the Gaza Strip on October 7 to document the events with their cameras.” The New York Times responded indignantly: “The accusation that anyone at The New York Times had advance knowledge of the Hamas attacks or accompanied Hamas terrorists during the attacks is untrue and outrageous. It is reckless to make such allegations, putting our journalists on the ground in Israel and Gaza at risk.”

Honest Reporting, however, said that claims it had “jeopardized the safety of all media working in Israel and the Palestinian territories” were nothing more than “a deliberate attempt to deflect from the real issues we raised.” And that’s true. Why doesn’t Masoud explain how he came to be on the scene of a Hamas operation on the morning of Oct. 7, and why he stated that he was awakened by rocket fire an hour before the rocket fire started?

After all, there is nothing remotely implausible about the idea of a New York Times “journalist” being a Hamas operative. Honest Reporting pointed out the Times’ “backing of a decision to rehire Gazan freelance filmmaker Soliman Hijjy despite HonestReporting previously revealing how he had praised Hitler on social media.” What’s more, the Times and the rest of the establishment media have for years been consistently anti-Israel, and have worked assiduously to whitewash the bloody reality of Islamic jihad. Why would the Times, or any other establishment propaganda arm, hesitate to hire a supporter of Hamas and fanatical hater of Israel and Jews? Media observer Hugh Fitzgerald states that “save for a single columnist — Bret Stephens — the New York Times has no one on its staff, among its hundreds of reporters, columnists, and op/ed contributors, who could be described as willing to give Israel a fair shake.”

We have just recently discovered how closely the United Nations Relief and Works Agency for Palestine Refugees in the Near East (UNRWA) collaborated with Hamas, allowing the jihadis to operate on UNRWA premises, employing Hamas operatives, and teaching hatred of Jews and Israel in its textbooks for Palestinian schools. If this could happen before the eyes of a watching world, what would possibly prevent a “journalist” from a deeply biased and essentially pro-Hamas outlet from going whole hog with his support for the jihad terror outfit?

The New York Times has a great deal to answer for, far beyond Yousef Masoud. Masoud may indeed have been a Hamas jihadi, in which case his George Polk award should be rescinded and the Times should not use him again. But the fact that none of that is likely to happen is in large part a result of the Times’ indefatigable efforts to make support for jihad violence respectable and mainstream. The Times should at this point perform a thoroughgoing soul-searching, and a wholesale reevaluation of its uncritical support for jihadis. But nothing is much less likely.

AUTHOR

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Mercedes-Benz Walks Back On Huge Electric Vehicle Commitment Amid Slowing Demand

Mercedes-Benz on Thursday walked back plans to have an all-electric line-up by 2030 as consumers decline to adopt electric vehicles (EV) at the rate automakers expected.

The company has changed its expectations to have only 50% of its sales be EVs by 2030, announcing that it will be updating its current line-up featuring the internal combustion engine into the next decade, according to Mercedes-Benz in its fourth quarter report. EV sales grew 21% year-over-year in 2023, but total car sales remained relatively the same, bucking hopes that EVs would fuel growth as the automaker pushes electric models.

“It is almost like we will have a new lineup in 2027 that will take us well into the 2030s,” Ola Kaellenius, CEO of Mercedes, said following the report, according to Reuters. Kaellenius noted near the end of last year that even European markets, which are more likely to adopt EVs, might not be able to reach the 2030 all-electric goal due to consumer reservations about issues like lack of charging infrastructure and appealing models.

The Biden administration has sought to ease charging concerns as the president pushes for an EV transition, allocating $7.5 billion for charging infrastructure. Despite the huge investment, lack of demand, regulations and union requirements have stalled construction, with only two charging stations having been built as of December 2023.

Mercedes-Benz also posted its fourth quarter results, with revenue declining a disappointing 1.8% year-over-year but up slightly by 2.1% comparing 2023 to 2022, according to a release from the company. Net profit was down 21.5% in the quarter year-over-year and 1.9% for 2023.

The company also announced a 3 billion euro stock buyback in an effort to boost its stock price, according to the fourth quarter report.

Other automakers have also had to cut EV goals, including Ford, which announced that it would be reducing production volume of its F-150 lighting as of January after losing a total of $4.7 billion on EVs in 2023. General Motors reported a $1.7 billion loss in the fourth quarter in the production and sale of its EV line, despite being profitable otherwise.

“Our overall goal remain unchanged: Our Ambition 2039,” Mercedes-Benz said in a statement to the Daily Caller News Foundation. “Thereby, the ambition is to make our entire fleet of new vehicles net carbon-neutral along the entire value chain and over the vehicles’ entire life cycle by 2039. Therefore, we continue to put our company in a position to go all electric.”

AUTHOR

WILL KESSLER

Contributor.

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AT&T’s War on Landlines

There’s a current movement to shut down landlines completely by “decommissioning” the copper wiring that enables this reliable form of communication. And this movement appears to be growing! Why? Perhaps because landlines work. And because the Powers that Be can’t monitor them and shut them off at will, as they can do with wifi and digital communication. Just a wild guess. You be the judge.

But it’s taking place in Britain and Australia as well as in America today. They plan to replace the copper service with either fiber or 5G. Sound good to you?

By the way, here’s an article from CNN, about a huge outage that happened today, February 22, 2024:

AT&T says service has been restored after massive, nationwide outage. Authorities are investigating

“AT&T’s network went down for many of its customers across the United States Thursday morning, leaving customers unable to place calls, text or access the internet.

By a little after 3 pm ET, roughly 11 hours after reports of the outage first emerged, the company said that it had restored service to all impacted customers.”

That’s 11 hours that people were left high and dry, without the ability to make or receive phone calls. This is why we need landlines, no matter what AT&T tells us, as it argues landlines, which are time-tested and never fail, are “antiquated.” I guess they mean like the Constitution, which is even older, and which Leftists also want to replace.

In California, AT&T is requesting that the CPUC—California Public Utilities Commission—allow it to end landline service permanently.

Fortunately, the public has the opportunity to weigh in with the CPUC, which has already received thousands of letters in support of maintaining landlines, which many people rely on.

AT&T’s power outage just this morning is proof positive that it must continue to maintain our landlines for our safety and security. They are far more reliable than WIFI, and there’s no legitimate reason to do away with them.

Here’s something else to consider: “This change may affect alarm systems, elevators, and call boxes reliant on landlines.”

Here’s the link to the CPUC’s website where you can read public comments, and if you live in California, you can use the link on that page to write your own comment prior to AT&T’s hearing.

So far, this one looks winnable!

©2024. Cherie Zaslawsky. All rights reserved.

Please visit: https://cheriezaslawsky.substack.com/

CEO of Cardone Capitol To Team: “Immediately Discontinue All Underwriting on New York City Real Estate” In Wake of Insane Ruling in Trump Case

It begins. As predicted, one of the most successful private equity real estate firms has called for a cessation of business in New York.

Grant Cardone to Team: “Immediately Discontinue All Underwriting on New York City Real Estate”

By: Joey Solitro, Yahoo News, Feb 21, 2024:

Grant Cardone is less than pleased with the ruling against former Donald Trump, in which Trump has been ordered to pay $355 million in penalties plus interest. If Trump were to pay the full amount of the penalty today, it would cost him roughly $450 million.

In a post on X, formerly Twitter, Grant Cardone said, “Dear Cardone Capital team, Immediately discontinue ALL underwriting on New York City real estate. The risk outweigh the opportunities at this time. Recent political decisions will continue to deteriorate price and benefit states that don’t have these challenges. Focus on Texas & Florida.”

Cardone’s comments echo what Kevin O’Leary said in a recent interview, calling the decision to fine Trump “unjust,” “appalling,” and “Un-American.”

“That fact that he was found guilty, you might as well find guilty every real estate developer on Earth,” O’Leary said.

Continue reading.

AUTHOR

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