Sen. Rand Paul (R-KY) on Friday continued the annual tradition of celebrating “Festivus,” airing out his many grievances as it relates to government waste.
Paul’s 2022 Festivus report highlights $482,276,543,907 in government waste and includes $2.3 million used by the National Institutes of Health (NIH) for an experiment involving injecting puppies with cocaine, $202,000 used by the Department of Defense (DOD) on Starbucks espresso machines, and $3 million for the construction of a Gandhi museum.
“This will be the 10th year in a row that I’ve celebrated #Festivus with you. By celebrated I mean have a little fun at the expense of Washington. If we don’t laugh we might cry,” Paul wrote before sharing some of the highlights of the report to his social media page and invoking the infamous Seinfeld quote from Frank Costanza, “I’ve got a lot of problems with you people!”
“I would air my grievance at Fauci again but I am trying to be festive — and also I’m trying to get home for Christmas. If I listed all of the things Fauci was wrong on…wow that guy is wrong a LOT,” Paul began:
According to Paul, the DOD wasted millions this year, including $28 million on “camouflage” uniforms that did not work.
Per the Festivus report:
A Special Inspector General for Afghanistan Reconstruction (SIGAR) report revealed that the Department of Defense (DOD) spent roughly $28 million on forest-patterned, “camouflage” uniforms to use in the deserts of Afghanistan. It was later found that the camouflage uniforms were “not based on an evaluation of its appropriateness for the Afghan environment.”
The DOD also spent $192,952 on what the report describes as “top-of-the-line” Starbucks espresso machines:
The NIH also wasted a significant amount of money. That includes $2.1 million on encouraging Ethiopians to wear shoes, $2.3 million injecting beagle puppies with cocaine, $1.1 million on “training mice to binge drink alcohol,” over $519,000 using mice to study racial aggression, and $187,500 on “verifying that kids love their pets.”
According to the report, the pet grant went to Kent State University, which used the funds to apparently “verify that the relationship between pets and children is beneficial to mental health.”
Other highlights directly from the report include:
Maintaining 77,000 empty Federal buildings (GSA)………………..………….$1,700,000,000
In a vote of 80-16, the US Senate yesterday approved HR 6172, which reauthorizes several surveillance authorities originally passed into law via the USA PATRIOT Act as temporary measures. HR 6172 cements the collection of business records, the “roving wiretap provision,” and the so-called “lone wolf provision,” which allows the surveillance of those with no known connection to terrorist organizations. While the FBI has testified to the Congress that the “lone wolf provision” has never been used, this is widely thought to be inaccurate and that this provision is the authority under which US citizens, activists and journalists, are being widely surveilled.
Several amendments were proposed to the Senate, only one of which passed. Senator Mike Lee, R-Utah, had proposed an amendment which would guarantee the participation of an Amicus Curiae (Friend of the Court) in cases involving requests for permission from FISA to surveil political figures, religious organizations and the press. This amendment passed by a vote of 77-19.
The Wyden-Daines amendment would have restricted the collection of browser activity and internet search history. This amendment also failed.
Senator Rand Paul (R-KY) had proposed a widely publicized amendment which would prohibit the surveillance of American citizens, excluding Americans from the provisions involving wiretapping and data collection tools authorized by the FISA court. This amendment went down in flames, receiving 11 yea votes and 85 votes against.
In a speech on the Senate floor, Paul had this to say about HR 6172:
To those of us that prize the rights guaranteed in the Bill of Rights, the Patriot Act is a violation of our most precious rights. The Patriot Act, in the end, is not patriotic. The Patriot Act makes an unholy and unconstitutional exchange of liberty for a false sense of security.
The failure of Paul’s amendment points to an uncomfortable reality: it is appearing more and more that our government is dedicated to the surveillance of Americans. With Osama Bin Laden dead and ISIS under siege, one would wonder what is so compelling about the phone calls, internet activity and more of a growing number of American citizens who are now watchlisted.
Surveillance and the Coronavirus
It is compelling that Paul’s failed amendment comes at a time when the Department of Defense has just contracted with ApiJect to provide delivery systems for vaccines. ApiJect’s website details its capability to provide RFID tracking to every prefilled vaccine it provides, stating:
Whether health officials are running a scheduled vaccination program or an urgent pandemic response campaign, they can make better decisions if they know when and where each injection occurs. With an optional RFID/NFC tag on each BFS prefilled syringe, ApiJect will make this possible. Before giving an injection, the healthcare worker will be able to launch a free mobile app and “tap” the prefilled syringe on their phone, capturing the NFC tag’s unique serial number, GPS location and date/time. The app then uploads the data to a government-selected cloud database. Aggregated injection data provides health administrators an evolving real-time “injection map.”
ApiJect goes on to say:
Remote, real-time tracking of injections in the field can be achieved by affixing an NFC (Near Field Communication) tag to each BFS prefilled syringe. The NFC tag will hold a unique encrypted serial number. Just prior to injection, the health worker would tap the NFC tag to the back of their smartphone (just like using Apple Pay at a checkout counter). A free mobile app would capture and automatically upload the dose’s serial number, as well as append patient anonymous data including time, date, and GPS location to the government’s designated cloud database. Data would then be aggregated and analyzed to provide real-time coverage maps for more efficient vaccination campaigns.
In other words, everyone who gets the vaccine will have that event recorded and tracked.
It is entirely possible that this level of surveillance might have run into some problems should Senator Paul’s amendment, prohibiting the surveillance of US citizens, have passed the Senate. Clearly, a database concerning who has been vaccinated, when and where constitutes a surveillance authority.
Due to the passage of the Lee amendment to HR 6172, the Bill now goes back to the House to be reconsidered before going to President Trump to be signed into law. Senator Paul has stated he will ask Trump to veto the legislation. Given that Attorney General William Barr is a proponent of the Bill, and given that Trump appears to be on the fence concerning this, it is unknown whether he will veto it or sign it into law.
There is still time to contact the White House and voice your opinion on the tagging, tracking and surveillance of US citizens. Here is the contact information for President Trump: https://www.whitehouse.gov/contact/ You can also telephone the White House at this number and leave a comment for him: 202-456-1111
For a list of which traitors, er Senators that is, voted for the spy bill, you can check them out here:
Janet Phelan is an investigative journalist and author of the groundbreaking exposé, EXILE. Her articles previously appeared in such mainstream venues as the Los Angeles Times, Orange Coast Magazine, Long Beach Press Telegram, etc. In 2004, Janet “jumped ship” and now exclusively writes for independent media. She is also the author of two collections of poetry—The Hitler Poems and Held Captive. She resides abroad. You are invited to support her work on Buy Me A Coffee here: https://www.buymeacoffee.com/JanetPhelan
Has everybody gone stupid? The NSA has not stopped spying on Americans… and it never will, either
Tuesday, June 02, 2015
(NaturalNews) There are days I just shake my head in bewilderment at the astonishing, almost incomprehensible gullibility of mainstream Americans and the media that claims to be practicing intelligent journalism. When I see the Associated Press report things like, “The NSA had stopped gathering the records from phone companies hours before the deadline,” I’m almost paralyzed with disbelief.
What’s so funny about that story? For starters, given that the NSA is a super secret organization with ZERO oversight and a history of repeatedly lying about what it’s really doing, how on Earth are we supposed to believe the NSA when it says it suddenly stopped spying on Americans’ phone calls because it “lost the authority” it never recognized in the first place?
Is the mainstream media really just taking the NSA’s word that it has stopped spying on everybody because it no longer has the “legal authority” to do so? There isn’t a single shred of evidence that the NSA has stopped any spying activities at all. Even more, the Associated Press has no way to verify whether anything has been halted. Trusting the NSA’s statement claiming it has halted its spying activities is about as gullible as trusting Iran’s statements on how it has halted its nuclear fuel enrichment program. Geesh… how hard is it for people to understand that governments lie by default?
So now, suddenly, we’re supposed to believe the NSA isn’t spying on us all merely because it says so? Should we pull out our pinkies and do a pinky swear on it, too? Maybe we can be BFF as well?
The NSA recognizes no legal authority, period
It’s just incredible that anyone would think the NSA’s activities are bound by anything even resembling “legal authority.” The NSA does whatever the hell it wants. And why does it do that? Because it can. Because they’ve already gathered up all the records of U.S. Supreme Court judges and they have enough emails, phone calls, web surfing history and search engine history to blackmail practically everyone in Washington D.C. (and everywhere else, for that matter).
“However Congress resolves its impasse over government surveillance, this much is clear: The National Security Agency will ultimately be out of the business of collecting and storing Americans’ calling records,” says the Associated Press. Yeah, right. In your crack-induced fairytale, maybe. But in the real world of hardball politics and blackmail, any organization that has the power to keep collecting all these records will absolutely keep doing so unless and until it is physically forced to stop (i.e. shut off the power, confiscate the servers and close the buildings).
And that’s never gonna happen, folks. Not by a long shot. The spy apparatus is far too valuable to ever be shut down. At best, it will pretend to shut down long enough to shut up the public. But behind the scenes, every single spy server dedicated to this task will continue as normal, without interruption.
Sorry to have to say this so bluntly, but anyone who believes the government is going to voluntarily stop spying on the American people is a complete fool. The way these games are really played is far beyond any recognition of “legal authority.” For example, the NSA can simply take its entire spy operation, transfer the assets to an NSA shell company in the Cayman Islands (without actually moving the servers anywhere), rename it “NSB” and continue operations as normal… all while testifying before Congress that, “The NSA has halted all domestic surveillance operations.” Yep, it has! But NSB has resumed those operations, ha ha.
And if NSB is ever unveiled, they can move it all to “NSC” and so on. The spying never stops, folks. The only thing that changes is the name of the spy organizations conducting it. Does any intelligent person honestly think they’re going to voluntarily shut off all those billions of dollars in servers and storage facilities they built for this purpose? Ain’t gonna happen.
And the way you know this to be true is to ask yourself this question: If you were the director of the world’s most amazing intelligence gathering spy tool that operated utterly without any boundaries or limitations whatsoever, would YOU shut it down? Of course not. No one would. You’d use it precisely because it’s powerful. It’s the Ring of Power from the Lord of the Rings. Almost no human being has the moral integrity to voluntarily part with it. It’s so PRECIOUSSSSS…
True American heroes: Edward Snowden and Rand Paul
Despite the ongoing spy activities of the NSA, it’s worth mentioning something hugely important in all this.
There is only ONE Presidential candidate who has the courage to stand up against the surveillance state and demand an end to these illegal violations of Americans’ privacy. His name is Rand Paul.
As far as I can tell, Rand Paul is the only candidate who has a spine. While Jeb Bush and Hillary Clinton are both total spy state insiders, Rand Paul is risking not just his political career but even his own neck to take a stand against the surveillance state. That’s historic. It’s truly remarkable, and it may uniquely qualify Rand Paul to be the kind of serious reformer who can take on Washington and knock some heads around.
Edward Snowden is also, of course, the key hero in all this, and I strongly recommend you watch the documentary called Citizen Four to gain a better understanding of Snowden’s contributions to privacy and freedom in America. Edward Snowden has quite literally risked his life — and forfeited his own personal freedom — to blow the whistle on the illegal spying being conducted by the U.S. government on the citizens of America.
What should have happened immediately after Snowden’s shocking revelations was a nationwide movement of pissed off people marching in the streets against Orwellian government. But what really happened instead was a nationwide movement of apathetic sheeple turning on Oprah and munching down some Twinkies before injecting themselves with insulin. In other words, nobody gave a damn because they were too busy cowering in blind obedience and practicing cowardice and conformity.
And so they all are getting the government they deserve: an Orwellian spy state that enslaves them all. This is what they are begging for, after all, when they are so gullible that they’ll believe anything the government tells them. The same people who believe the NSA magically stopped spying on them must also believe the FDA protects the people, the DEA wants to eliminate the drug trade, and the CDC is trying to eradicate infectious disease.
Wake up and smell reality, folks. None of these entities give a damn about the People. They all exist for only one purpose: to expand and assert their own power by any means necessary. That’s the fundamental nature of organizational existence, and it’s precisely why Big Government keeps getting bigger, badder and more dangerous unless its power is somehow limited or halted by the People.
Hence the origins of the Bill of Rights in the first place, over two centuries ago.
We’ve been down this road before, of course. This isn’t the first rise of police state tyranny in the history of our world. And it certainly won’t be the last…