Perhaps you’ve seen PragerU’s video on Brazil’s experience with socialism. The key points of the course are how Brazil’s socialist policies indebted the country, undermined the economy, and enriched the elite class of politicians and their cronies. In response, many Brazilians, particularly younger Brazilians, created a movement called Movimento Brazil Livre or MBL. In English, it translates as the Free Brazil Movement.
The movement is not without scrutiny and a familiar line of attacks that those on the American right are used to. They are accused of spreading fake news, being promoted by a foreign entity, and being a threat to democracy. Evidently this behavior is par for the course in any country dealing with an outbreak of socialism. Facebook, an American company has long been accused, and found guilty, of showing favoritism towards leftwing organizations and politicians. In their efforts to combat fake news, they targeted the Babylon Bee, a Christian satire website. This was the result of Facebook consulting leftist factcheckers including Snopes, the specific one the led to the downgrading of the Babylon Bee‘s content. Facebook, in essence has created a system where factcheckers have unchecked power. As Kalev Leetaru of Real Clear Politics explains:
In its fight against “fake news,” Facebook has elevated nearly three dozen of the world’s fact-checking websites to be the ultimate arbitrators of what constitutes “truth” online. In the past, when fact checkers made mistakes, there was little consequence to their errors – one could choose to simply ignore those fact checkers that strayed too far from evidence-based verification. In the Facebook era, however, those fact checkers now have the ability to banish any statement or evidence they believe to be false and even to effectively blacklist outlets they disagree with.
Facebook has applied the same arbitrary system in Brazil and the same type of right-wing anti-mainstream media movement was disproportionately targeted. The Free Brazil Movement fell prey when nearly 200 pages and 87 accounts were deactivated for their role in “fake news.” The Free Brazil Movement confirmed with Reuters that several of its organizers were affected. The political organization has a long ways to go to reach political power. However MBL is well organized. The group was largely responsible for demonstrations that brought down President Dilma Rousseff. Libertarian outlet, Reason released a documentary on the the success of the Free Brazil Movement in 2016 at the start of the summer Olympics. The groups success in bringing down the controversial Dilma Rousseff has put the libertarian movement under greater public scrutiny. It’s worth noting that leading up to and after the vote, Dilma Rousseff called her impeachment sexist, a narrative leftist outlets supported.
Following the ousting of Rousseff, the Free Brazil Movement has a long uphill battle in changing the political landscape in Brazil. The organization has a savvy social media presence which Facebook delivered a blow to. The organization has taken to twitter to raise awareness and generate a public outcry aimed at Facebook and the bias media. Still the ability for the organization to spread information is undoubtedly undermined for its future ambitions. But the prospects, long term, are brighter as the country’s youth are more receptive to capitalism than their predecessors.
Shafeeq Sheikh, doctor convicted of rape, should be in jail. He got probation instead.
Shafeeq Sheikh raped a heavily sedated patient while working at the Baylor College of Medicine. After a rape kit matched his DNA, the jury convicted him of 2nd degree sexual assault with a maximum punishment of 20 years in prison. For whatever reason, the jury decided to give him 10 years probation instead.
Sheikh will have to register as a sex offender. Unlike most states and the federal government, Texas grants juries the power to set criminal punishments.
The punishment has surprised defense attorneys, disappointed law enforcement and raised concerns from a victims advocacy group, according to media reports.
The jurors had recommended the sentencing, to which visiting Senior District Judge Terry L Flenniken was required to follow by law, according to local media report.
Generally, I like the way Texas handles criminal sentencing. Every now and then, justice is not served and this is clearly one of those cases. Here is a victim who has been permanently changed, having been raped by someone she should have been able to trust in a place where she should have felt safe. He is a predator who the victim believes has committed similar crimes before.
Violent criminals must be punished. While the maximum term may have been too much, to not serve at least a decade in jail after what he did is sickening.
ICE gets media beating for taking illegal immigrant into custody over Mexican homicide warrant
It’s the type of story the media craves. An illegal immigrant, Joel Arrona-Lara, who “hasn’t done anything wrong” was detained by ICE agents while transporting his pregnant wife to the hospital. She ended up having to drive herself the rest of the way before delivering their son.
The spin is predictable. They skim over the fact that he has an arrest warrant in Mexico for homicide while putting all the focus on his wife’s dilemma. They even attempt to cast doubt on the warrant because the lawyer for the family says he couldn’t find a record of the warrant. This last part is most peculiar because it would be simple for a major media outlet to confirm the existence of the warrant. They did, of course, but they won’t report that when they have a better quote from the lawyer denying its existence.
Eventually details will emerge about the warrant, but not until the media inflicts as much damage as possible on ICE and anyone in favor of legal immigration being the proper way to enter the country.
Here’s the story. If you click through, you’ll even get a link at the bottom to the family’s new GoFundMe page:
Her husband Joel Arrona-Lara was driving his wife to the hospital for a scheduled Cesarean section Wednesday afternoon when they had to stop to get gas. That’s when their car was approached by two SUVs. Maria said they were officers with Immigration and Customs Enforcement.
The mother of five was then asked to show her identification and complied. When the agents asked Arrona-Lara, the couple said he didn’t have the ID on him, but that they lived nearby and could go get it for them. The agents then asked Arrona-Lara to exit the vehicle, searched the car for weapons, and put Arrona into custody, leaving Maria alone at the gas station.
There’s no doubt the circumstances surrounding all of this are unfortunate. Pregnant wives should not have to drive themselves to the hospital for a scheduled C-section. On the other hand, suspected murderers shouldn’t be entering the country in the first place. That point won’t be mentioned by mainstream media.
ICE has a responsibility to take people like Arrona-Lara into custody so it can be determined whether or not they should be deported. There may have even been a certain degree of leeway given had there been no records other than his status as an illegal immigrant, but being a suspected murderer with an arrest warrant took away any chance at leeway. The ICE agents did the right thing.
As a legal immigrant, I have no sympathy for those who cheat the system and break our laws. Blaming the ICE agents for doing their job correctly in order to keep us safe is the type of insanity mainstream media loves to sell us.
The real reason Ocasio-Cortez is afraid of the press
For at least the second time, reporters were barred from covering an event featuring Socialist Democratic darling Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez. The campaign’s reason: we want attendees to feel comfortable since there’s so much national press covering her.
This is an absolutely ridiculous excuse, of course. Nobody goes to a campaign event without knowing the press will (should) be there. It doesn’t make them less comfortable and may actually give some a sense of security knowing the answers to their questions will be judged by more than the audience at hand. That’s one of the reasons for the press in the first place, to give information about an event to people who cannot attend.
Instead, the press is getting another roadblock:
Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez, the Democratic socialist star running for New York’s 14th congressional district, is facing criticism after her campaign banned journalists from covering a town hall meeting with voters this week.
The Queens Chronicle, a local news outlet, reported that the campaign for the 28-year-old progressive prevented reporters from attending a campaign event in Corona on Sunday, even though it was open to the rest of the public. The campaign reportedly barred reporters from a prior event as well.
It’s conspicuous that a local publication was barred because it runs contrary to the narrative the campaign is trying to sell. So why is she being hidden from reporters at these types of events?
It’s clear that her exposure is her best friend and worst enemy. Being talked about is a politician’s best friend on the campaign trail, but it also offers a risk of failure. This is most common in events like the town hall meetings she is holding because she’ll be forced to think on her feet.
What if she can’t think on her feet? What if her answers when placed in an unscripted situation the type of answers many would expect from an inexperienced socialist?
Until she’s ready to handle the pressure of having press cover these events, she won’t be ready to hold public office at this level. The House of Representatives isn’t for people who need to be protected from their own answers.