Today, we talk about the pending “RESTRICT Act.”
But, before that, a few corrections to recent posts:
I was wrong to say that EVERY Israeli secular/left-oriented party that existed in 2001, no longer exists. After publishing, I was surprised to learn, the Labor (Avodah) party—which, as itself or its Mapai predecessor, ran Israel for the first 29 years, and is likely still the nation’s second largest party, by membership—still has FOUR seats (out of 120!!!) in parliament. Until I was corrected by my Israeli relative, I did not realize this party still existed, LOL. However, other 2001-era parties on this spectrum, have either lost all seats in parliament (e.g., Meretz), or have disestablished completely (e.g., Shinui, which at one time in the 2000’s was a tier-two party, about 14 seats.)
I was wrong to say the Ukraine needs $7 billion in monthly funding assistance. I now know the baseline “outside” funding need to be $5 billion monthly, given the shortfall between current revenue (I didn’t know the figure until yesterday) and the 2023 central budget (plus, regional spending which I’ve baselined from 2021.) HOWEVER, the budget LIKELY does not include spending such as hazard pay for frontline soldiers, as well as on refugee grants and housing. These additional items COULD add about another $1 billion to the total outside funding need. So, we know that foreign direct financing of the Ukraine MUST be AT LEAST $5 billion monthly, and POSSIBLY about $6 billion. In this context, it is CLEAR that the International Monetary Fund’s first, roughly $4 billion installment of a four-year, $15.6 billion fiscal assistance loan package MUST be disbursed, in one lump sum, IMMINENTLY, if it hasn’t been already. (I’m guessing it’s already been, without fanfare.) This money will be (or was) spent by the Ukraine IMMEDIATELY. As I wrote before, it’s CLEAR that this $4 billion from the IMF (basically, the USA under a fig leaf) is a means to fund the Ukraine’s budget WITHOUT Congressional authorization. But, what will they do in a few weeks, in a month? Ukraine needs money constantly, LOL. Obviously, they’re just delaying things, hoping Tucker Carlson finds something else to talk about!
(ALSO, I’ve learned that the World Bank—like the IMF, headquartered in Washington, DC, and basically a proxy of the U.S. Government—also provided the Ukraine with $500 million in direct budgetary support (“to pay civil service salaries”, etc., LOL) in December. Uncle Sam is pulling out ALL the stops, to delay another Congressional funding package. But, they can’t delay it for long!)
(ALSO, I would not be surprised to learn that the Pentagon or even CIA are helping pay the Ukraine’s budget out of their “black box” or (in the CIA’s case) “off the books” funds. This is not too speculative. U.S. House Republican leadership is DESPERATE to do everything possible to put off the next Congressional funding round. And, it is HIGHLY suspicious, how the Ukraine money angle has fallen out of the news in recent months. You know our State Media won’t look into or mention anything the War Machine / Foreign Clusterfuck Complex doesn’t want in the public eye. As I’ve written, in early February, the Washington Post mentioned a pending new $10 billion budget assistance package for the Ukraine… and never followed up, literally no news on that for over six weeks. Congress evidently decided against it for the time being, but you KNOW the money IS getting and WILL get to the Ukraine SOMEHOW.)
A Message to Establishmentarian Republicans
Get it through your skulls: The Republican base today, is NOT the Republican base of 2012
We’ll get to the “RESTRICT Act” in a few minutes.
Please listen to the below audio message.
The audio, and below language…..
Were all done BEFORE Trump’s indictment.
They’re even more true, now.
If you don’t want to listen…..
Here’s the short of it:
…..GOP prez candidate…..
…..is NOT ELECTABLE in 2024.
(I’m NOT saying Trump is or isn’t, but he certainly has a better shot.)
Not enough hard-core Trumper Republicans…..
…..will vote for that person.
Yes, many will hold their nose and do it…..
But not nearly enough.
To the Party Establishment:
You don’t have the votes!
I know you’ve gotten used to it….
But, with a candidate “acceptable” to you…..
The “wayward sons and daughters“…..
…..won’t “come home“…..
Not at the usual rate, anyway.
The world has changed.
If YOU haven’t…..
You will LOSE.
(Please note, in the audio message, by “celebrity”, I mean an overall superstar personality, not necessarily an athlete or actor or Kim Kardashian.)
(Also, please don’t confuse me with a voter, I’m out and done. It’s just fun to watch the GOP shitshow.)
(Also, I should add, if anyone thinks that after getting away with it in 2020, and—in Arizona at least—in 2022, the Dems won’t cheat in 2024, just because (hypothetically) Trump’s NOT on the ballot… Well, anyone who thinks that, needs to get their head out of their ass.)
Digital Protectionism Through A 21st Century Volstead Act
Everything you’ve heard…..
…..about the totalitarian (LOL) “RESTRICT Act“…..
…..is probably wrong.
Fox News‘ Jesse Waters said this bill…..
…..means “open season on your search history.”
There’s been open season on your search history for decades, welcome to America!
Anyhow… where’s that in the bill???
It’s not in the bill.
“RESTRICT” is plainly NOT about surveillance.
You have to be DISHONEST…..
…..to find surveillance in those 55 pages.
“RESTRICT” is something else.
In the context of (as reported by the Wall Street Journal)…..
…..the top four apps, by download volume…..
…..in the U.S., today…..
The “RESTRICT Act” is the first comprehensive U.S. attempt…..
…..at digital protectionism.
It is a crude go…..
…..at establishing a totally arbitrary, dumbed-down…..
…..”micro CFIUS” process…..
To allow Uncle Sam to ban…..
…..any given, successful Chinese…..
…..or other “unfriendly country” app…..
…..or other software, cloud service, etc…..
…..from use by any given U.S. entity.
Also, under “RESTRICT“…..
They can even target the sale of Chinese…..
…..(and they’re almost all Chinese)…..
Also, the legislation allows the President…..
…..to compel DIVESTMENT by foreign companies…..
…..of their U.S. IT-related operations.
(Hello again, TikTok.)
Back to the “ban” part…..
The legislation goes so far…..
…..as to allow the Department of Commerce…..
…..to cancel contracts already signed, or existing subscriptions.
Even, those in effect for years.
If someone ignores a Department of Commerce order…..
…..to stop dealing with a given Chinese software…..
…..they can go to jail for 20 years.
They can also have any relevant accounts and property…..
…..(used in their business)…..
…..seized and auctioned.
As if they’re a drug lord!
Between the sweeping nature of the legislation…..
…..its shocking novelty…..
…..and the “freestanding“…..
…..(i.e. not modifying any existing statute)…..
…..nature of its addition…..
…..to the U.S. Code…..
There’s no recent precedent…..
…..for this sort of thing.
It’s a sort of Volstead Act (1919 prohibition of alcohol)…..
…..for Chinese software.
Now, this is a real LOL…..
…..but there’s no provision…..
…..for actually BANNING any software.
They can order the Apple store…..
…..to stop selling X…..
…..but, they’d have to separately tell the Google store…..
…..to stop selling X.
The way it’s written…..
…..(although it could perhaps be “interpreted” otherwise)…..
…..they can’t just come out…..
…..and prohibit, in one go…..
…..EVERYONE from using X.
In other words…..
…..(I know, this is splitting hairs)…..
They can’t “ban” X, per se.
I don’t know.
Perhaps it’s to get around (or so they think)…..
…..WTO (free trade) rules.
But, that’s just a guess.
Anyway, of course…..
They can avoid…..
…..all the “don’t sell X” bullshit…..
…..by forcing divestment….
….that is, the sale of X…..
…..(obviously, at a “fire sale” price)…..
…..to a U.S. company.
So, two different hammers in the toolbox.
Now, Fox News’ Tucker Carlson…..
…..brought up free speech.
He said this bill allows the Government…..
…..to “regulate speech on the Internet.”
Well, just reading the bill…..
…..that seems false on its face.
However, Carlson is a smart guy.
I had to think about this for a minute.
Imagine if Telegram…..
…..(hands down, the world’s best all-around social media app for adults, and used as a backup, “in case I’m banned” medium by thousands of American, British, etc. tweeters and bloggers)…..
…..was still, today, a Russian company…..
…..instead of having been chased out of Russia…..
…..a few years ago.
If that was the case…..
Then, under the RESTRICT Act…..
Uncle Sam could say…..
“We don’t like this app, it’s interfering with democracy, blah blah…..”
…..(they don’t need any other rationale, it’s all subjective)…..
…..and knock it off the app stores.
Anyway, that’s for the future.
If passed today…..
What RESTRICT does…..
Is cements the trend towards “nationalization“…..
…..or national segmentation…..
…..of the Internet.
If (probably, when) it passes…..
It’s just another nail in the coffin…..
…..of the “World Wide Web.”
Facebook and Twitter have been banned in China since 2009.
Russia recently banned FaceBook, WhatsApp, Snapchat, and Viber.
They’d have banned YouTube as well…..
…..but their RUTUBE platform…..
…..isn’t ready to take up the load.
I can already see Chinese apps…..
…..pushing American ones…..
…..out of markets like India, the Arab countries, Africa, etc.
The Chinese learn fast.
10 years ago…..
No one thought they’d be cleaning our clock in software.
As they move into other markets…..
The way things are going…..
It seems to me…..
Those markets will DIVERGE from the U.S.
Given the way Uncle Sam thinks…..
They will, by default, be seen as HOSTILE.
This is also really bad for U.S. dotcom revenues.
Many of these dotcoms need global scale…..
…..or they’re not viable.
Or at least…..
Their present valuations would not be justified.
With that being said…..
I highly urge you to follow and “like” me on Twitter.
Just scroll down and “like” everything you see.
Also, feel free to give me money.
So that I’m not working for your infotainment, for free.
Read My Comments Policy
The first (and every subsequent) genius…..
…..who tries to leave a comment…..
…..asking me what I think of Iran, depleted uranium…..
…..or whatever else that’s NOT in the given day’s post…..
…..gets permanently banned.
Even if it’s some interesting topic…..
I’m just not taking the bait.
Please read my Comments Policy! It is below.
If you have an idea…..
…..as to what else I should write about…..
Please send me an email.
But keep the comments on-topic.
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Dreizin Report Policy On Rap, Rappers, And Thugs