Greetings from Tyler,

The big story today is Turkey, and how its currency is collapsing.  You can read headlines about sanctions against Turkish officials freezing their assets in the U. S. and retaliatory sanctions against American officials.  But that doesn’t explain why the Turkish lira is in free fall.  The recent poor relations with Turkey come from the fact that an American pastor is being held in prison on charges of “Christianization.”  Plus, Erdogan claims that a man who helped organize an attempted coup against him is hiding in the U. S. and there is no effort to extradite him back to Turkey to face legal charges.  If Turkey’s fate depends on waiting for President Trump to blink, good luck to them.

As Turkey’s economy falters, Erdogan is blaming the United States, whatever that’s worth.  But Turkey is a member of the EU and of NATO.   Several European nations, notably Spain, loaned fabulous sums to Turkey and its financial institutions when the outlook was rosier.  Tremors rumbled through the world’s financial markets with the news of Turkey’s currency devaluations but seem to have stabilized.   Longer term, EU exposure to a Turkish collapse, at a time when European nations are already faltering, may turn out to be the big story.

Here’s a lesson that should have been learned long ago.  Banning a book, movie, or in this case an alternative media outlet, is likely to make it more popular than ever.  From what we can tell so far, people who believe in freedom of speech but who would never otherwise go to Alex Jones or INFOWARS as their source of news or opinion, are acquiring the app in large numbers just to go against the apparent social justice monopoly that exists among social media companies.  For several of the top tech outfits to all banish somebody on the same day indicates coordination.  After all, the occasionally offensive, sometimes bogus content of Alex Jones rants has been out there for ages. It didn’t just emerge this week, it’s been part of the background static since before the Internet was conceived.

We’ve noticed that the corporate giants have behaved as enforcers of every politically correct doctrine, demanding that neither terrorists nor criminal aliens be insulted while working to legitimize radicals, whether Black Lives Matter or Antifa.  Network outlets and the flagship newspapers that steer their content practice censorship on a continuing basis. They publish what they want their audiences to react to and don’t pay any attention to anything that goes against their socialist narrative.  Everyone who notices is either “doing the bidding of Vladimir Putin,” or Nazis, according to them and their apologists.

It’s not just the way they report, it’s what they won’t report.  A current example is what happened this week that, if roles were reversed, would have been wall-to-wall.  In Portland, the black-clad, masked and misnamed Antifa “protesters” hurled racial epithets into the faces of black ICE officers calling them names that have been effectively banished from the English language.  There are of course exceptions made for rappers, gang-bangers and residents of the “hood.”  They can scream out whatever they want, at anybody they want.  That’s understood and accepted by pretty much everybody, because you see, they are the “victims,” lashing out against their oppressors.  Antifa is not a “protest” at all.  It’s mob is made up of fascist thugs (mostly white) who hurt people or damage property to intimidate all opposition.  They demand open borders, free stuff and government mandates to punish and do away with capitalism. Notice how the Portland, Oregon mayhem this week went almost completely unnoticed by mainstream outlets.

Radicals are the media darlings.  Journalists and networks largely understand their logic even when there is none, promote their demands, attack their detractors, participate in calling patriots racist bigots and run perpetual interference.  Don’t they realize that their own round the clock attempt to humiliate and destroy Donald Trump helped result in his winning the presidency?  Calling him and any who would dare vouch for him every evil epithet has not worked.  They’ve apparently convinced themselves that EVERYONE, save the deplorable, irredeemable garbage people in flyover country, detest him and therefore cheer their efforts to destroy his presidency.  It’s not working.

There are parallels in these situations that highly educated (indoctrinated) elite opinion makers just can’t grasp.  Maybe in hindsight, but not yet.  In the meantime, this may just be the beginning.  The primary networks still operate in lock step.  They (including former star anchors and some in the Senate) dream of the day when there is a single authority sitting as judge and jury presiding over the distribution of information.  This may be the “tip of the iceberg,” as they say.  Fox News already is no panacea.  They have an equal share of naysayers, emotional defenders of Antifa, BLM, Obama, Hillary and the obvious corruption of the premier agencies.  But dozens of stories, particularly those that show corruption in the FBI, CIA, Department of Justice and others, have reportedly been spiked.  Only when a story goes so viral that one of the other mainstream outlets publishes it, will it see the light of day on Fox News.  But that’s not good enough.  The radical socialists (including some in very high office) would love to see it banished.  The Trump era has them so rattled, they’ve dispensed with the “moderate” routine and shown their true socialist colors.

Most of us realize that loads of false and misleading information is spilled into the public discourse daily.  We either look in on it occasionally to see what others are banking on, or ignore it altogether.  That’s not nearly good enough for those that want conservative speech completely banned for the “survival of our democracy,” which to them means mob rule.  May freedom of speech prevail over the machinations of the enforcers, the violent “protesters,” the network anchors, their expert panels, and the tech companies that are pushing the limits of monopolistic censorship.  And they have the nerve to call everybody else “fascist!”

Either you hate Trump and want the U. S. to get back to the Obama transformation or face banishment by the self-appointed guardians of socialist snowflakes.  They’ve intervened in some of our efforts as well, rejecting boosts for The Answer to Unanswered Prayer.  Arguing with them via e-mail gets nowhere, so we’ll find other ways.  We will keep pumping out the Good News and the bad news as it plays out.  Truth is, it feels a lot safer now than it has for many years.

Mark Armstrong