Did you know that popcorn is a good source of fiber?
Did you know that popcorn is a good source of fiber?
Holy sacred cow batman!
Ashley Judd talks about tampons and President Donald Trump.
If there was any doubt that the liberal left was in complete meltdown mode, then look no further than Hollywood actress Ashley Judd’s strange and perplexing speech at the liberal left religious gathering, otherwise known as the the Women’s March in Washington D.C.
While the entire corrupt main stream media is calling Judd’s speech “epic” and “brave”, we found it cuckoo and nutty.
Judd needs to chill out a bit, and let President Trump prove to America that he is worthy of the job he rightfully won. God knows Obama was an utter disappointment, and Hillary would have been a WW3 disaster.
We ask Mrs. Judd the same thing we asked Madonna in a previous post…
We are not fooled by the likes of Judd, Madonna and Moore. They are shills, paid by the deep state to get on stage and “perform” in outrage of Trump’s presidency, so that the thousands of useful idiots in the crowd can continue to believe in the false idols of neo-liberalism.
Mark Dice adds…
Ashley Judd’s “Nasty Woman” speech at the Women’s March in Washington D.C. today is being celebrated by crazed feminists and beta males who cheered her on as she ranted about her period and for having to pay tax on tampons.
I recently watched the Borgia series on Netflix and I must say it is brilliant. It’s one of those cases where history is far weirder and insane than fiction. The meme below states historical facts.
Dear New Zealand: Your loss, our gain.
Signed North America.
According to writer Evan Osnos, preppers from Silicon Valley and New York are getting ready for the “crackup of civilization.”
One American hedge-fund manager who owns two New Zealand homes told Osnos he expected at least a decade of political turmoil in the United States. PayPal co-founder and Facebook investor Peter Thiel also owns property there, and has described New Zealand as “utopia.”
Osnos said it’s unclear exactly how many wealthy Americans are buying property in New Zealand with the apocalypse in mind, while many just want a holiday home there. However, the amount of land they have purchased in the last few years has increased dramatically, he added.
Statistics showed foreigners had bought over 3500 square kilometers of New Zealand in the first ten months of 2016, which is over four times as much as they did in the same period in 2010.
LinkedIn co-founder Reid Hoffman told The New Yorker that New Zealand had become the hot topic among Silicon Valley leaders lately.
“Saying you’re ‘buying a house in New Zealand’ is kind of a wink, wink, say no more. Once you’ve done the Masonic handshake, they’ll be, like, ‘Oh, you know, I have a broker who sells old ICBM silos, and they’re nuclear-hardened, and they kind of look like they would be interesting to live in.”
Hoffman estimated that over half of the Silicon Valley insiders were into preparedness – especially since anti-elite sentiment has risen around the globe in recent years. It was intensified by events like Brexit and the election of Donald Trump, he added.
According to the NY article, in the seven days after Trump’s election, 13,401 Americans registered with New Zealand’s immigration authorities, which is the first step toward seeking residency. The number was “more than seventeen times the usual rate.”
Meanwhile, the growing foreign appetite for New Zealand has already generated resentment. The Campaign Against Foreign Control of Aotearoa—the Maori name for New Zealand—opposes the sell-out to foreigners, particularly to American survivalists.
In a discussion about New Zealand on prepper website Modern Survivalist, one of the commentators wrote, “Yanks, get this in your heads. Aotearoa NZ is not your little last resort safe haven.”
Damn Israel and its arrogance. It refuses to listen to the world, to the UN resolutions that have time after time condemned its incursions into Palestinian land, and basically thinks the moral laws of humanity do not apply to it.
Relocate Israel to Florida where they belong! Meanwhile, boycott everything Israeli.
The plans have been authorized by Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu and Defense Minister Avigdor Lieberman, and are intended to allow the settlements “to maintain regular daily life,” the ministry said in a statement.
“It will be one of the largest industrial zones in the West Bank, in which we are planning to set up warehouse and fuel storage infrastructure, along with other elements,” the statement reads.
The news comes days after Israel announced a similar expansion of housing units in East Jerusalem.
The Israeli settlement policy goes against international law and has been the subject of much criticism from other nations, including the US under the Obama administration. Observers believe that the announcements, made in the wake of Donald Trump’s inauguration last Friday, are intended to signal Israel’s expectation of support from the new US president.
The ministry said that 100 of the homes would be built in the town of Beit El, Reuters reported. This settlement has received funding from the family of Trump’s son-in-law, Jared Kushner, according to Israeli media.
On Monday, Netanyahu reportedly told members of his security cabinet that he had decided to lift all restrictions on Israeli construction in East Jerusalem, which were put in place under diplomatic pressure, Haaretz newspaper wrote, citing senior officials briefed on the situation. The PM also announced his plans for moving forward with settlement expansion in the West Bank, according to the paper.
“A baby humming bird found his way into my home. He was a bit stunned so I let him recoup on our front porch. While waiting for his nectar to cool I captured a few images of him as he came back to his own.”
“Fox caught in action under the rain”
“The fox was bathing in the snow flake.”
A colossal Cumulonimbus flashes over the Pacific Ocean as we circle around it at 37000 feet en route to South America
“While enjoying the sights of Chicago’s Garfield Conservatory found this unlikely traveler taking a closer look at this Bromeliad. Sometimes you have to slow down to appreciate the tiny wonders right in front of you!”
“This image was taken last summer on Skomer Island, Wales. It is well known for its wildlife, the puffin colony is one of the largest in U.K.The photo shows a detail or study of an Atlantic puffin resting peacefully under the rain. As Skomer is inhabited, puffins do not feel afraid of humans, and so people can be close to puffins and the photographer can think about the right composition and take this kind of intimate portraits. Also that morning the conditions came together: rain and light.”
“Waves of fog roll over a neighborhood in Mill Valley, California, as seen from the top of Mount Tamalpais.”
“Every autumn walruses swim to this rookery place in the North of Russia (Chukotka, Vankarem cape). One day, walking along the beach away from the rookery, I came across a lone walrus, who was sleeping on the shore, its tusks sticked in the sand. I carefully crept up to it and photographed it with a wide-angle lens. At some point it woke up and noticed me.”
“A morning stroll into the blissful forest ! Ceaseless drizzles dampening the woods for 12 hours a day; The serene gloom which kept me guessing if it was a night or a day. Heavy fog, chilling breeze and the perennial silence could calm roaring sprits; And there I spotted this 20cm beauty the Green vine snake ! I wondered if i needed more reasons to capture this with the habitat; For I was blessed to see this at the place I was at. I immediately switched from the macro to the wide angle lens.”
“An American Crocodile on the surface in Gardens of the Queen, Cuba.”
by Arkadev Ghoshal
January 24, 2017
A total of 17 such radio signals have been received from this location in space, and given their nature, speculation has already begun on whether we are being hailed by extra-terrestrial life forms.
The signals — detected at the Green Bank Telescope in the US and the Arecibo Observatory in Puerto Rico, according to an article in the Astrophysical Journal — are described as Fast Radio Bursts (FRBs). Discovered only in 2007, FRBs are really fast radio signals that last for only a few milliseconds, and can be detected only with special equipment.
What’s also special about these FRBs is that even though they exist for such small durations, they tend to generate so much energy that it could parallel the amount of energy generated by the Sun for a whole day!
It is this aspect of the signals — as well as the fact that now a total of 17 such signals have been detected so far from the same region in deep space well beyond our galaxy — that is leading to speculation that there may be a sufficiently advanced extraterrestrial civilisation behind them.
”Everything is in a process of investigation both in the United States and in Spain, as well as the rest of the world. The nations of the world are currently working together in the investigation of the UFO phenomenon. There is an international exchange of data.” – General Carlos Castro Cavero (1979). From “UFOs and the National Security State, Volume 2,″ written by Richard Dolan.
The technological expertise of civilisations is often determined by the Kardashev scale, named after the Russian scientist who proposed it in 1964. It proposes that there are three kinds of civilisations across the universe: Type I, which utilises only that much energy which reaches it from its nearest star; Type II, which has harnessed entire energy of its nearest star for use across various planets; and Type III, which has harnessed the energy of stars across its entire galaxy.
Given the nature of the newly-received FRBs — specifically their energy — it is being speculated that if their source is artificial, they could have been sent by at least a Type-II extraterrestrial civilisation as a means to reach out to other, similarly intelligent civilisations. That is because the amount of energy in these FRBs cannot be produced by any conventional means known to man, but could be emitted by an artificial source from a civilisation that has harnessed the power of an entire star.
In this video Luke Rudkowski address the media’s outcry after Donald Trump met with Robert Kennedy Jr and asked him to be on the committee on vaccine safety. This issue is extremely important as we show you with evidence against the CDC and big pharma vaccine industry that has been largely unaccountable.
See previous post
In this randomized controlled trial, 60 older adults with subjective cognitive decline (SCD), a condition that may represent a preclinical stage of Alzheimer’s disease, were assigned to either a beginner meditation (Kirtan Kriya) or music listening program and asked to practice 12 minutes/day for 12 weeks. As detailed in a paper recently published by the Journal of Alzheimer’s Disease, both the meditation and music groups showed marked and significant improvements in subjective memory function and objective cognitive performance at 3 months. These included domains of cognitive functioning most likely to be affected in preclinical and early stages of dementia (e.g., attention, executive function, processing speed, and subjective memory function). The substantial gains observed in memory and cognition were maintained or further increased at 6 months (3 months post-intervention).
As explained in the research team’s previous paper, both intervention groups also showed improvements in sleep, mood, stress, well-being and quality of life, with gains that were that were particularly pronounced in the meditation group; again, all benefits were sustained or further enhanced at 3 months post-intervention.
The findings of this trial suggest that two simple mind-body practices, Kirtan Kriya meditation and music listening, may not only improve mood, sleep, and quality of life, but also boost cognition and help reverse perceived memory loss in older adults with SCD.
After eight years of kowtowing to Obama, they have suddenly discovered a civic responsibility to hold the government accountable. But they are focusing on minutiae, and in some cases actually telling lies, both of omission and commission. That risks alienating the public even further — making it harder, actually, for the media to act as watchdogs.
Lie #1: President Trump was focused on the crowd size at the inauguration. He mentioned it in passing in his speech at the CIA, and Press Secretary Sean Spicer took the media to task for trying to downplay attendance figures. But to say — as CNN’s Anderson Cooper did — that crowd size was Trump’s focus on his first day in office is simply absurd. On Cooper’s program Saturday, CNN played a clip of Spicer’s first press conference that only mentioned the crowd size issue — leaving out Spicer’s preceding comments taking a journalist to task for reporting, falsely, that Trump had a bust of Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr. removed from the Oval Office. The crowd issue was secondary — but CNN chose to focus on it because it was less of a slam-dunk against the media than the bust. Whatever the numbers on Inauguration Day, Spicer’s point was that the media were more interesting in undermining Trump, and promoting anti-Trump protests, than in covering the actual news of the day.
Lie #2: President Trump insulted the CIA. Extending the faux outrage at Lie #1, the mainstream media criticized Trump for talking about crowd size in front of the CIA’s memorial wall for agents who have died in the course of their duties. The media showed considerably less concern when President Barack Obama spoke before the same wall about the release of the prior administration’s interrogation memos, impugning the integrity of the CIA and giving valuable intelligence to terrorists.
Lie #3: The anti-Trump protests in Washington, D.C. were important. The protests were nothing more than the venting of outrage at Trump’s election. For all the talk of “women’s rights,” there was nothing particular to point to that Trump had done about anything relating to women. The demonstration was large, but also disorganized, as well as vulgar, and protesters left heaps of trash over the various routes they took, including protest signs abandoned at Union Station as they left the capital.
Joel B. Pollak is Senior Editor-at-Large at Breitbart News. He was named one of the “most influential” people in news media in 2016. His new book, How Trump Won: The Inside Story of a Revolution, is available from Regnery. Follow him on Twitter at @joelpollak.
Read more at: breitbart.com
SHOW NOTES: https://www.corbettreport.com/?p=21383
Obama’s legacy is measured in ashes. From wars of aggression to a police state on steroids, banking bailouts and Obamacare, Obama has been the perfect captain to carry the New World Order football further down the field. But as Americans prepare for a new liner to be placed in their gilded bird cage, today we remember how the Deep State tricked the public in 2008 by giving them what they thought they wanted.
The U.S. government’s efforts against illicit drugs have finally run their course.
With over one trillion dollars wasted over the past several decades and nothing to show but failure, taxpayers are beginning to ask a simple yet pertinent question: Is it time to end the bottomless funding of this utterly ineffective anti-drug crusade?
With a $29 billion budget for the 2017 fiscal year, the Department of Justice (DOJ) has secured vast resources to the Drug Enforcement Administration (DEA). With a sizeable budget — $2.8 billion in 2015 — the agency tasked with the chore of enforcing “the controlled substances laws and regulations … and [bringing] to the criminal and civil justice system … organizations and principal members of organizations involved in the growing, manufacture, or distribution of controlled substances appearing in or destined for illicit traffic in the United States” has continued to be the number one drug warrior within the federal government. But the DOJ’s Criminal Division, which is tasked with overseeing multiple offices, also houses the Organized Crime and Gang Section (OCGS), an agency that specializes in “developing and implementing strategies to disrupt and dismantle” gangs and organized crime, including drug trafficking. The 2017 budget for the Criminal Division alone is $198.7 million, which represents a “9.3 percent increase over 2016.”
Over the years, these agencies have time and again been tasked with capturing drug lords and low-level sellers, attempting to put an end to the flow of illicit substances into the country. But despite the copious amounts of resources used in this task alone — whether it’s through the DEA, the OCGS, or even the Federal Bureau of Investigation (FBI) — illicit substance use (and abuse) has only grown across the country.
According to data released by the federal government, for example, “[a]vailability of methamphetamine remains high as evidenced by its accounting for the largest percentage of drugs identified from law enforcement seizures and its declining wholesale price.” And yet, President Barack Obama requested an increase in funding for agencies such as the DEA, FBI, and OCGS.
Despite these agencies’ failures, the supply of other substances, like heroin, has also increased.
With overdose rates doubling in most states between 2010 and 2012 and a staggering 28,000 Americans dying of opioid overdoses in 2014, it’s hard to understand the logic behind increasing the budget for an agency or group of agencies working unsuccessfully around the clock to put a stop to the drug trafficking business. Are these agencies helping to stop the flow of illicit drugs by enforcing current laws, or are they making the problem even greater by forcing users to rely on the black market?
In the real world, where employees of businesses or non-public organizations have to demonstrate proficiency in their trade to remain employed, these institutions are unable to keep their doors open if they are not delivering results.
When it comes to the federal government, however, results have nothing to do with budgeting. Why? Because the federal government doesn’t produce wealth. Instead, it taxes residents.
The federal government’s funding comes from the money earned through the ingenuity, hard work, and entrepreneurial spirit of common people. But as we see almost regularly on the news, people tend to spend money unwisely when they haven’t earned it. The same happens inside institutions where employees and leadership all rely on the bottomless pit that is taxpayer ‘revenue.’
Individuals are free to act on their desires and needs, basing their decisions on information they have at hand, but also on past experiences. As free agents, humans have the natural right to pursue their own lifestyles, which includes the use of illicit substances. The very core of principles used to guide the creation of the U.S. constitution clearly shows this. And for most of the country’s young history, drug use was not controlled by governments or law enforcement. Some of the founding fathers even grew their own hemp — a variety of the cannabis plant.
At some point, even the consumption of alcohol in America was outlawed. The result? The creation of some of the most legendary, law-breaking cartels the world has ever seen. But what else happened due to alcohol prohibition? More alcohol abuse (which the federal government attempted to battle by imposing an ill-fated policy of poisoning huge supplies of alcohol).
Like alcohol, drug abuse has turned into a problem because consumers have to rely on the black market for their products. Without access to clear information on these substances, consumers suffer tremendously. And without free competition, which would flourish without governments constantly hampering these efforts, consumers would be free to only pursue their habits by relying on the safest, most trusted sources.
If the goal is to put an end to the illicit drug trade, the federal government is embracing the very opposite of what they ought to, allowing their attempts to restrict drugs to empower black market entities taking advantage of anti-drug laws. Increasing the budget of law enforcement agencies and adding to the ever-growing burden on the U.S. taxpayer is not going to do anything to fix it.
Jan 23, 2017
Image: David Weekly/Flickr
Western Union admitted it behaved criminally through its “willful failure to maintain an effective anti-money laundering program and aiding and abetting wire fraud,” reports Forbes. They’ve agreed to pay a $586 million fine. From the Forbes article:
In a statement from the U.S. Department of Justice and Federal Trade Commission on Thursday, authorities describe insufficient or poorly enforced policies that resulted in the funneling of hundreds of millions of dollars in proceeds from illegal gambling, fraud and drug and human trafficking.
In one case, illegal immigrants from China sent money back to the people who smuggled them across the border. With the help of employees, the payments were structured so that they didn’t trigger reporting requirements under the Bank Secrecy Act, say authorities.
In another example, Western Union processed hundreds of thousands of transactions for an international scam, wherein fraudsters directed people to send money in order to claim a prize or help a relative. Western Union employees often processed the payments in return for a cut of the proceeds, say authorities.
Wifredo A. Ferrer, the U.S. Attorney in Miami, said the misconduct reflected “a flawed corporate culture that failed to provide a checks and balances approach to combat criminal practices.”
“Western Union’s failure to implement proper controls and discipline agents that violated compliances policies enabled the proliferation of illegal gambling, money laundering and fraud-related schemes,” he added.
I’m not a fan of civil asset forfeiture, which is basically a way for law enforcement to steal money and assets from anyone without charging them with a crime. But in this case, it seems appropriate for the government seize the assets of the CEO of Western Union, Hikmet Ersek, until he can prove that his $8.5 million salary didn’t depend on Western Union’s admitted criminal activities.
Taking vitamins and supplements often gets a bad rap because they’re not regulated by the FDA and many people believe that you should ingest these vitamins naturally through healthy foods.
He takes 50 everyday because they make his brain “work better.”
Taking vitamins and supplements often gets a bad rap because they’re not regulated by the FDA and many people believe that you should ingest these vitamins naturally through healthy foods. While there is nothing wrong with this mentality, it’s not for everyone and, apparently, not what Rick Rosner believes in. Rick Rosner is the second smartest human in the world with an IQ of 192, according to The World Genius Directory, and he takes approximately 50 pills everyday.
Rosner has taken dozens of IQ tests, most of which he has received the highest score ever, and was first labeled a genius when he was in kindergarten.
While some might suggest that Rosner’s obsessiveness over his health and taking his pills is over-the-top, Rosner says that the vitamins and supplements help his brain “work better.” In an interview with Business Insider, he detailed the pills he takes and the frequency for each, but he clarified that he is not a doctor.
Below is the list in his own words:
“Omega 3 fish oil capsules. This is supposed to be the good fat, more liquid at normal temperatures, to take the place of not-so-good, more solid fats.
Half an aspirin daily. Along with flossing your teeth, taking half an aspirin or a baby aspirin each day might be the cheapest, easiest way to extend your life. Aspirin knocks down inflammation and keeps your blood thin. You can get a year’s worth of aspirin for a buck at a discount store.
Metformin. A drug for Type 2 diabetics that decreases glucose production in the liver and helps your body use insulin more efficiently, reducing spikes in blood sugar (and possibly reducing the likelihood of cancer). Metformin is one of two drugs that may fool your body into reacting as if you’re ingesting fewer calories, possibly flipping your metabolism into extended-life mode.
Metoprolol. A blood-pressure drug that I take that knocks down adrenalin and the fight-or-flight response. It lets me drive in LA without my blood pressure going up.
Glisodin. One of the many things I take which is supposed to clean up cellular gunk, stuff that builds up over a lifetime. This may help slow down graying of hair, might cause slight euphoria. Hard to tell.
Avodart (generic name dutasteride). It knocks out DHT (dihydrotestosterone), a form of testosterone that makes your prostate blow up and your hair fall out. Whenever you see a TV ad where old men are always rushing off to pee, you’re seeing an ad for a DHT blocker. An added benefit of DHT blockers is they cause your body to pump out some extra testosterone to compensate, so it’s a little like being on steroids. Don’t let women come in contact with this drug — it could lead to the birth of a hermaphrodite.
Glucosamine and chondroitin. For less-creaky joints. Our dog gets this, too.
Fancy multivitamins from Life Extension and Vitacost. The kind with about 45 obscure ingredients.
SAM-e (S-Adenosyl methionine). This is supposed to keep your liver all nice. Also, milk thistle, which is also supposed to help your liver.
Astragalus. May help fight the shortening of telomeres.
Fiber gummies. I like food and don’t have perfect food habits, so I use fiber gummies and carb blockers to compensate for my lack of eating discipline. Fiber gummies are fiber in the form of gumdrops — candy that makes you poop. The faster food moves through you, the less you absorb. Carb blockers suppress a digestive enzyme so you only absorb 75% of the carbs you eat when you take them with a meal. You poop a little more, but it’s worth it.
Fat blockers. These are pure punishment and should be avoided for all but the fattiest meals. It’s better just to eat less fat. For instance, peel most of the cheese off a piece of pizza — it will still taste just like pizza.
Prescription and non-prescription drugs to lower cholesterol.
Curcumin. Reduces inflammation and is a very pretty orange color.
ALA and acetyl L-carnitine
Vitamin E with selenium and also Gamma E
Mangosteen pomegranate noni complex
Horse chestnut (for varicose veins)
Quercetin & bromelain
Coffee. This is the only brain drug I know for sure works. It doesn’t make me smarter, but it keeps me alert. Started drinking it about two and a half years ago. Used to nod off every afternoon at work. No more, thanks to coffee.
Cognitex from Life Extension
Methylene blue. A dye that is in Phase III clinical trials to see whether it clears out junk amyloid protein in the brain. MB may act as a detergent, helping to break up amyloid, which can clog the brain, killing neurons. Might be good if you’ve taken some shots to the head. I worked in bars and got punched in the face a few times — but not anything like the shots taken by football players. (Plus, methylene blue makes your urine a rich emerald green.)”
In addition to taking these supplements everyday, he also allegedly visits five different gyms in a typical day. He claims that taking the pills and exercising regularly help him to slow down the aging process of the body and allow him to stay alert.
Nick Parkins – Is the term ‘psychopath’ even sufficient to describe those in power today?
Nick Parkins, New Dawn
“Our society is run by insane people for insane objectives. I think we’re being run by maniacs for maniacal ends and I think I’m liable to be put away as insane for expressing that. That’s what’s insane about it.” ~John Lennon (1940-1980), English singer and songwriter
Lennon and others externalise the apparent paranoia that wells up inside us. “The world has gone mad!” More often than not we partition this voice off, content to view the world as others prescribe it. But who are these others, and what do they want?
The term psychopath is often criminally misjudged, thanks largely to unhelpful portrayals of sick, twisted and violent psycho-character types in the popular media. This has led, by way of public ignorance, to the common belief that the psychopath has no function, role or place in open society. A swift offload that allows us, the apparent sane majority, to circumvent our worst fears.
Any notion that the psychopath is incapable of functioning in open society is, according to M.E. Thomas1 – a self-confessed sociopath – flawed. The question is not the capacity to function, but rather what capacity or form that function takes. As Thomas says, psychopaths and sociopaths share an intertwined clinical history; both can function, they just do so differently. And though we are left to muse on what mask that function may take, in many social situations they excel.
Jean-Baptiste de Lamarck was a French biologist who advocated a theory of evolution widely rebuked in establishment circles. Lamarck’s major work was published in the same year Charles Darwin was born – who would go on to supplant Lamarck’s theory 50 years later. In Lamarck’s world cooperation prevailed over Darwinian competition as the driving mechanism of evolution.
According to authors G. Greenberg and M.M. Haraway,2 it was Darwin’s view that served to reflect and sustain a Victorian society tied to free market, capitalist and imperial values. His model supported a dog-eat-dog, life is hard, code of practice; the scientific valediction of the natural world as played out on a brutal, cold and insensitive landscape. Arguably the perfect environment for the aspiring modern day psychopath, and a prevailing view that the poet Tennyson described as nature, red in tooth and claw.
Although diagnosing definitive psychopathy in individuals remains somewhat of a grey area, attempts have been made to categorise psychological traits that set psychopathic personalities apart. Most prominent is the diagnostic check-list devised by renowned Canadian psychologist Robert Hare that is used to determine a categorical diagnosis of clinical psychopathy, or at best a category score.
According to Hare’s list, psychopaths display superficial charm, unbridled ego, and pathological lying and cold, calculated cunning to entrance their prey. They are often impulsive and irresponsible, and exhibit an absence of empathy and remorseless lack of guilt. These and other attributes, such as criminal versatility and a marked capacity to manipulate, deceive and control, mark them out as dangerous. These are traits that enable psychopaths to move into high-ranking positions of power and influence.
“We know much less about corporate psychopathy and its implications,” explains New York psychologist Paul Babiak, “in large part because of the difficulty in obtaining the active cooperation of business organisations for our research.”3 A dilemma that Hare disclosed to Jon Ronson, author of The Psychopath Test. “Prisoners are easy,” states Hare. “They like meeting researchers. It breaks up the monotony of their day. But CEOs, politicians…”4 According to Hare, these sharks are a different kettle of fish.
A rare study on psychopathy in the workplace conducted by Babiak, Neumann and Hare5 suggests that 1 in 25, or 4 per cent, of corporate executives display significant personality traits typical of psychopathy – an incidence four times that estimated in the general population. The study supports the claim that psychopaths can and in fact do achieve high ranking corporate status. We are left to speculate, but Hare concedes Wall Street may harbour 1 in 10 attracted to lucrative watering holes that are poorly regulated. Factor this in and it’s not hard to see how the very lifeblood and identity of corporations and financial institutions can often run cold.
Arguably most startling, the study indicates that despite being classed as substandard managers, team players and attracting poor performance appraisals, executives that met the clinical threshold of psychopath were valued by their immediate superiors as creative and innovative, as good communicators and strategic thinkers.
In short, they may not always fly under the radar. Despite the blips, it is clear to American psychiatrist Hervey Cleckley7 that psychopaths possess the communication, persuasion and interpersonal skills to override any negative impacts on their career. A finding supported by the Babiak study: “some companies viewed psychopathic executives as having leadership potential, despite negative performance reviews and low ratings on leadership and management by subordinates.”8 According to the authors, this shows a proficiency to manipulate decision makers, a point made by psychologist Dennis Doren who observed in institutions the psychopath’s unerring ability to seek out and foster relationships with those of highest authority and demonstrate tremendous skill at influencing them.9
In many instances the chameleon-like ability of the psychopath to mimic its surroundings by reading and influencing colleagues through the art of deception, be it through self promotion or subtle persuasion, allows the snake charmer to hide his true skin and pass unchecked through social customs. Studies suggest psychopathy, in body or by proxy, can entrench itself at the top, but is this phenomenon relatively isolated, or has this scenario over the course of human history always prevailed?
As vice president and director of Governance Studies at the Brookings Institution, Darrell West analyses business and law school curricula, specifically, according to West “because business and law schools train the leaders of tomorrow.”10 In the course of his research West reviews course syllabi and conducts interviews with faculty members. He has also surveyed data on business and law school student perceptions. What he found was troubling.
“The social responsibility of business is to increase its profits,” states West, taking his lead from the title of a 1970 New York Times magazine article written by the highly-influential American economist and statistician, Milton Friedman. The article was unequivocal: according to Friedman, maximising shareholder value was a company’s sole responsibility.11
“Many schools do not require stand alone courses that provide broad conceptions on the purpose of the corporation in society,” says West. Of those that do, “many focus on the purpose of the corporation, with emphasis on how to maximise shareholder value, especially in law schools.”12 Instruction therefore is key, notes West, and will colour a student’s view of the world. In fact, West concludes, “business school surveys show that after completing school, students are more likely to see shareholder value as the most important goal of the corporation.”13
It was not that Friedman was a prophet. In hindsight, according to West, he helped shape the outlook of numerous business leaders, academics, and thought-leaders that ultimately served to affect America’s modern sense of purpose of the corporation. An inherent identity that helps shape the way business and law school students view their, often times, lack of responsibility to society even today.
In the real world, inevitable coldly-calculated equations play out on the one side to maximise profit and on the other to minimise loss. And like most mathematical equations they make little or no sense to the layman.
“Can you buy what you already own?” This was the equation facing all concerned when Canadian-based Nautilus Minerals Inc. purchased the licence in 2011 from the “Independent State of Papua New Guinea” (PNG) to mine deep-sea vent fields in sovereign waters off the country’s coastline. The answer, morally, of course, is no.
According to Sir Julias Chan, current Governor of New Ireland province in PNG, ethics are an intangible commodity, and unlike cold hard currency rarely stack up. “First, the state cedes exploration and production rights to foreign companies for next to nothing,” says Chan. In the case of PNG 10,000 kina, equivalent to US$4,000. “For this pittance, the foreign developer gets full control of all the wealth that can be taken from the ground.”14
“The next step is for the state to seek equity in the project, usually 30 percent in a mining project and 22.5 per cent in an oil or gas project,” explains Chan. “The state has ‘given away’ the entire resource to a foreign company, and now returns to buy what was already legally its own property, for a 30 percent interest in the project.” To PNG this meant 300 million kina, or US$118 million. “And, to do so, the state usually takes out a commercial loan rate that puts the country further into debt at high interest.”15 Today a common event whereby the state acts to castrate itself and its people to high finance.
Joel Bakan is a professor of law at the University of British Columbia, Canada. While those that run corporations are for the most part, good, moral people, says Bakan, the duty of the corporate executive is to the corporation’s business interests first and foremost. “The money they manage is not theirs,” explains Bakan. “They can no sooner use it to heal the sick… or buy a villa in Tuscany.” In the corporate world, good people are encouraged to behave badly. In fact, the sum of corporate parts are “singularly self interested and unable to feel genuine concern for others in any context. The corporation, like the psychopathic personality it resembles, is programmed to exploit others for profit.”16
Under such terms it is not difficult to envisage how a system can soon come to value and mimic its most deviant parts. Equally, how the parts over time can come to be shaped by the whole.
According to philosopher and author Aaron James, while the psychopath feigns moral action as a tool to manipulate others, the arsehole could well be a butt of equal contention. Unlike the prototypical psychopath, says James, the arsehole “traffics in and is moved by moral justification,” which leads to an “entrenched sense of special entitlement.”17
The perfect example, according to James, is Apple founder Steve Jobs who saw his sole obligation to society as implicitly tied to producing the products his consumers desired. James notes what Jobs’s best friend, Jony Ive, once told Business Insider: “when he’s frustrated… his way to achieve catharsis is to hurt somebody. And I think he feels he has a liberty and license to do that,” said Ive. “The normal rules of social engagement, he feels, don’t apply to him.”18
Worryingly, James says, “the arsehole’s reasoning is shaped by the moral justification his surrounding culture makes available to him.”19 For instance, according to Hare, many white-collar criminals are psychopaths. “They flourish because the characteristics that define the disorder are actually valued,” asserts Hare. “When they get caught, what happens? A slap on the wrist, a six-month ban from trading, [oh] and don’t give us the $100 million back.”20
Accordingly, not only does corporate culture control net arsehole production, but the quality of butt-heads produced. And, depending on the culture, says James, “an arsehole can be better or worse behaved than a psychopath.”21 A consoling thought.
Arguably it is no more comforting to know that the psychopath you had fingered all along is really an arsehole nurtured by a system that is, by way of inherent nature, socially deviant. If the reasoning of a typical arsehole is moved by moral justification, taken from his surrounding environment, then the ability of a psychopathic culture and/or system to shape its own governing class is implied.
The enduring strength of psychopathy lies in its ability to manipulate how others perceive it. But the innate ability of the psychopath or the system to shape our perceptions is not, in itself, entirely the reserve of the clinical psychopath.
We all play our part in the masquerade. Many of us partake in cosmetic enhancements and props that support our ego’s waltz through this porcelain world. Whatever the score, the Hare check-list has a number picked out for us all. In its pursuit of ultimate control, this is the greatest achievement of psychopathy; after all, what better way to predict by response a person or group, than to give them your mind?
The competitor’s urge to win at all cost is certainly pervasive. So, too, the trend of irresponsibility, most evident in the compensation culture that has crept into the social mindset, thanks to laws that restrict a person’s capacity to develop by way of ethics and moral concepts of right and wrong. How can you take responsibility for thoughts and concepts that are not your own? In the broad, rules and regulations teach us to hand over our power, a transaction that re-enforces itself in society according to Thomas. She says that given the choice between having power and giving it up to a ‘trusted’ entity, people often choose to give it up rather than take the responsibility that comes with it.22
In its apparent, endless quest to reinvent society in its own image, psychopathy perhaps has more than one expression. Recent research into social media habits throws up disturbing correlations between heavy Facebook use and socially aggressive narcissism. In one study users that scored highly on a Narcissistic Personality Inventory questionnaire, reports Damien Pearse, “had more friends on Facebook, tagged themselves more often and updated their news-feeds more regularly.” The research, the report states, “comes amid mounting evidence that young people are becoming increasingly narcissistic, and obsessed with self-image and shallow friendships.”23
In the same breath the media have ‘jokingly’ jumped on those abstaining from Facebook as highly suspicious and suspect – they could have something to hide. Facebook use is, of course, prevalent and ‘normal’.
An infinite number of media streams exist that entice us to see our reflection, drawing us into powerful undercurrents, and buffeting us from one bank to the next. We surface only to take breath, disorientated and confused, disconnected from our natural cues. But perhaps that’s the idea. Certainly it is the innate need to control and the power to wield it, at whatever cost, and without care, that fractures the pathological mind from the rest of us.
“Those who rise to power in the corporatocracy, are control freaks, addicted to the buzz of power over other human beings.” ~Bruce Levine, social critic & psychologist
In a competitive world there will always be those who actively seek out, justify or embrace traits of psychopathy as a route to success. For a surgeon, a cold detachment and cool head has its place. But glorifying the psychopath is a perilous path to tread. According to psychologist Linda Mealey, competition only serves to increase the use of antisocial and Machiavellian strategies and counteracts any increase in pro-social behaviour after success.
Spiralling societal separation, and re-enforcing detachment, sets a dangerous precedent, what James refers to as a sense of “entitlement born of cosmic grandiosity.”24 He cites oil baron John D. Rockefeller who viewed his wealth not in some Wild West American capitalist context that gave him free rein, but unapologetically, by divine right: “God gave me my money,”25 said Rockefeller.
This sense of divine entitlement, being chosen, as apart from society, has deeply disturbing parallels to contemporary wealth.
Jeff Greene is a multi-billionaire property investor and entrepreneur, and owns reportedly America’s most expensive home. Greene, who made his fortune betting on sub-prime mortgages, says Americans need to have “less things”: “America’s lifestyle expectations are far too high and need to be adjusted, so we have less things and a smaller, better existence,” lectured the 60-year old, who lets out the $195 million palatial estate in Beverly Hills to royal families and international dignitaries for hundreds of thousands of dollars a month.26
At its heart, assuming it had one, departments within the system, be they political, corporate or financial, select by lineage this mind; one willing to create, support and maintain it. “Figures such as J.P. Morgan, Randolph Hearst, and Mayer Rothschild,” argues author Stefan Verstappen, “are professional psychopaths that reach the pinnacle of the financial stage where they cause no less misery and destruction as their political counterparts.”27
As a result, examples of psychopathic conduct in high office are commonplace. Robert Kirkconnell is a decorated US Air Force combat veteran of 27 years, and an outspoken critic of the US government MK-ULTRA program that conducted a battery of callous psychological or ‘mind control’ tests on its own citizens. In American Heart of Darkness, Kirkconnell charges the presidential Rockefeller Commission, set up to investigate the CIA’s activities, which he says funded the program. Kirkconnell no longer sees his home as a constitutional republic, but as a pathocracy run by psychopaths.
“I had to win at all costs, sometimes allowing the costs to flow unchecked, just to see the volume of my power.” ~M.E. Thomas
“Power is all I have ever really cared about in my life,” states Thomas. “Physical power, the power of being desired or admired, destructive power, knowledge, invisible influence. I like people enough that I want to touch them, mould them, ruin them,” says Thomas. “I want to exercise my power.”28 It’s nothing personal. It’s dietary. The idea of ruining people, she says, is simply delicious.
Thomas is not unique. The psychopath invariably plays with its food. In the process actively seeking to visit misfortune or suffering on others. Thomas regards herself as a white tiger – a beautiful and exotic pet but inherently dangerous. And whilst in her own words she considers herself tamed, inside she continues to grapple with a primal urge to destroy.
This mindset is not lost on society. In fact, it is a worldview captured succinctly in Michael Ellner’s personal state of the world address: “Just look at us,” he asks. “Everything is backwards, everything is upside down. Doctors destroy health, lawyers destroy justice, psychiatrists destroy minds, scientists destroy truth, major media destroys information, religions destroy spirituality and governments destroy freedom.” You can see his point. But to what extent does this world talked of by Ellner stem solely from blind pursuit of power and profit?
Is there a hidden systemic malevolence that creates fear and uncertainty; the chaos to warrant this chase? Is the malevolent mist, that evil intent we ascribe to heinous acts and misdeeds, illusory, an epiphenomena, a by-product of the psychopath brain? Or is it real, autonomous, and guiding the program? And does this distinction matter? Does it help us interpret, say, the rise in chronic illness, its origins and how the healing profession has become, as critics claim, a public relations buzz-term; managing symptoms for profit?
The world of Kirkconnell swings into focus. Are we all victims of systemic programming; of disorientation; an imbalance the predator incites in us to maintain and enforce its position and status?
Like a god, so much of what psychopathy is and does hides in plain sight. The psychopath appeals to its prey’s sense of empathy and faith in humanity. He is the blank slate onto which people project their hopes and ideals.
This realisation must dawn if we are to expose systemic psychopathy and confront wildly sinister possibilities, not least the darker identities and underlying motives upon which it is based.
Darwin Dorr is the director of research into psychopathology at Wichita State University, Kansas. “The majority of paedophiles are psychopathic,” says Dorr, “or at least manifest to a significant degree the psychological characteristics of psychopathy.”29
Such ties that bind power to its perversions are historic, endemic and persist to this day. Investigations surrounding an elite Sydney paedophile ring are only the tip of a cold and callous iceberg that threatens to sink a titanic raft of untruths. In the UK, the reputation of once respected DJ, television presenter, and establishment confidante, Jimmy Savile, sank when his penchant for children, dead bodies, and satanic rituals and foreplay was disclosed to a shocked population.
Questions are now being asked outside UK Home Office circles and its curious taste for celebrity trash cans. All of a sudden the term psychopath seems no longer sufficient. Are such people, the system they represent, and the entities they mimic and worship, beyond a check-list? Certainly UK and wider establishment attempts to stymie the truth only serve to disclose further the covert means and amoral control by which psychopathy operates as an integral part of the system.
Nick Parkins has a master’s degree in philosophy of the mind and likes to live outside the box. To read his work, or if you have a strange or unexplained experience you would like him to cover visit www.nickparkins.co.uk.
The above article appeared in New Dawn 152 (Sept-Oct 2015).
Unless you have a company buying licenses for you, tools like Photoshop, Pro Tools, Maya, or even Windows can be a serious bite out of your wallet. Here are some more affordable options to those normally pricey apps that’ll help you stop fretting and get more done.
The first one’s a bit obvious. If you don’t have the money for Adobe Creative Cloud subscriptions, or never purchased a copy of Photoshop for yourself, the GNU Image Manipulation Program (GIMP for short) is for you. It’s feature-rich, powerful (even moreso with the GIMPShop plugin), and with just a little work, can work pretty much exactly like Photoshop when you need it to.
If you have a little trouble getting started with it though, that’s okay—it can look a little daunting, but this cheat sheet full of shortcuts and tips can help you navigate it and get up to speed quickly. After all, it’s your favorite PhotoShop alternative for a reason. If you’d like more alternatives, Windows users can try Paint.net (free), and Mac users can check out the highly-acclaimed Pixelmator ($30.)
Microsoft’s Office suite is the productivity standard in offices around the globe, but when it comes to your computer at home, if you don’t want to shell out for a license, or don’t have access to it through other means, you’ll still need something to work with—especially if you have to work with Word documents, Excel spreadsheets, or PowerPoint presentations others send you. Enter Libre Office, our long-favorite alternative if you need a local, non-web-based office suite.
Libre Office has come a long way in recent years, too. What used to look very much like a stereotypical “design by committee,” utilitiarian suite of tools has now come into its own as a more than capable and elegant competitor to Office that can still open Office documents, edit them, and save them for seamless use by people using Office. And of course, it’s completely free.
Adobe Illustrator is a must-have if you work with vector graphics, build logos, or even format documents for print or other publication, but again, if you’re not down to shell out for Creative Cloud subscriptions, Inkscape has been a long-time favorite for, well, just about everything you can do in Illustrator without the bells and whistles that most people don’t actually bother using. Plus it’s free, open-source, and cross-platform.
Inkscape also has a large user community and tons of guides on its tutorials blog to help you get started with it and up to speed quickly if you need a little help. We discussed it more in detail in our guide to replacing Creative Suite with affordable apps, along with some alternatives if Inkscape doesn’t suit your fancy.
Researchers have found that there may be a way to vaccinate people against climate change misinformation. The key? Telling them lies.
Researchers have found that there may be a way to vaccinate people against climate change misinformation. The key? Telling them lies.
A team of psychologists from the University of Cambridge, Yale University and George Mason University studied the effect of “fake news” about climate change and how it can shift people’s opinions.
Medically speaking, people are vaccinated against a virus by introducing a dead or weakened version of it to the body. This gives it time to build up a resistance. It turns out that the same can work in psychology.
In a study published in the journal Global Challenges, researchers found that if a person is presented with facts on climate change followed by lies, the lies cancel out the facts.
However, if the facts are presented with a small dose of misinformation, a person doesn’t hold onto the misinformation as fact.
“Misinformation can be sticky, spreading and replicating like a virus,” lead author Sander van der Linden, a social psychologist from the University of Cambridge said in a statement.
“We wanted to see if we could find a ‘vaccine’ by pre-emptively exposing people to a small amount of the type of misinformation they might experience — a warning that helps preserve the facts.”
In order to determine how opinions shifted, the team presented more than 2,000 participants — of all ages and political views — with a website that asserted more than 31,000 U.S. scientists had signed a petition saying that there was no evidence that human-caused carbon dioxide release will cause climate change.
They also presented them with the accurate statement — based on a 2013 study — “97 per cent of scientists agree on manmade climate change.”
There was a 20 per cent increase in scientific agreement when participants were only presented with the fact (in the form of a pie chart). Those who were shown only the website that contained misinformation, dropped their belief in a consensus by nine per cent.
‘There will always be people completely resistant to change.’ – Sander van der Linden, University of Cambridge
To see if it was possible to protect people against misinformation, the team used two types of inoculation: a general one that stated “some politically motivated groups use misleading tactics to try and convince the public that there is a lot of disagreement among scientists.”
The second was a detailed inoculation that called attention to the fact that many names were fraudulent on the website and that fewer than one per cent of the signatories had backgrounds in climate change.
With the general inoculation, the average opinion shifted by 6.5 percent towards accepting the fact. When the detailed inoculation was added on top of that, the shift was almost 13 per cent.
“There will always be people completely resistant to change,” van der Linden said. “But we tend to find there is room for most people to change their minds, even just a little.”