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COVID-19

‘River of Freedom’ documentary exposes the brutal COVID tyranny of New Zealand’s Jacinda Ardern

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9 minute read

Former New Zealand Prime Minister Jacinda Ardern

From LifeSiteNews

By David James

What emerges from the film is a political class without conscience. It turns out the Ardern government’s COVID advisory group knew early on about the vaccine side effects and advised the cabinet against the mandates. But the government went ahead anyway.

The documentary River of Freedom is a filmic record of the protests in New Zealand against the COVID lockdown policies and the mandating of vaccines. It has made its mark locally. Despite being ignored by the mainstream media, and only playing on a few screens, it reached number 10 in the box office.

The film documents the objections against then-prime minister Jacinda Ardern’s mandatory “No Jab, No Job” vaccination regime. It shows how the New Zealand politicians, when confronted by the protestors, hid in the building; all 120 parliamentarians refused to communicate with them. Two ex-members of parliament did visit and were later served with trespass notices.

The protestors seemed neither organized nor threatening; most of them talked repeatedly about the need to love one other. The mood was rather one of confusion and trauma as people who had mostly trusted their government saw their politicians turn into bureaucratic tyrants.

Many of them had lost their jobs and suffered the accompanying distress. There were photos of the vaccinated, often young, who had either died or been seriously injured. There was an especially sad story from a woman who had to undergo four rounds of chemotherapy after getting jabbed because of the extreme inflammation.

It is another chapter in the bleak history of what will come to be seen as the greatest medical crime in history. Yet strangely it is clear that both sides thought they were in the right.

The film starts with a truck convoy similar to the famous Canadian event. They arrived in the capital city Wellington as a diverse group, coming from many different walks of life. Their claims were simple. People should have the right to make choices about what goes into their body and should not be forced by the state. They should have the right to air their views and be involved in public discussion without being censored, demonized, abused, and ignored, including by the mainstream press.

This would once have been a statement of the extremely obvious. As one unjabbed policeman, who lost his job, pointed out, whenever he detained someone, he was required to inform them of the New Zealand Bill of Rights. Yet those rights were completely ignored by the NZ government.

The politicians, meanwhile, displayed a smug certainty that only managerialist functionaries can achieve. They had their deliverables (get everyone vaccinated) and, my goodness, they were going to deliver them. It is another demonstration that imposing a management discipline inevitably impedes peoples’ conscience, the ability to reflect on one’s own actions.

RELATED: New Zealand whistleblower who leaked data linking COVID jabs to excess deaths faces 7 years in prison

In parliament Michael Wood, the minister for Workplace Relations and Safety said, after pretending to have some understanding of the protestors’ fears, that underneath it all was “a river of filth, a river of violence and menace, a river of anti-semitism, and … a river of Islamophobia”. What the latter two claims were about is anyone’s guess. Oh, and I nearly forgot. There was also a “river of genuine fascism”.

The legal sophistry was provided by the Attorney General David Parker, who burbled on about “collective rights” versus individual rights. He opined that in communist and fascist countries collective rights are taken too far – a better description would be that rights are largely removed from people – and then warned against “an extreme version of individual liberties trumping community rights”.

Apart from slipping between “rights” and “liberties,” which have different definitions, it is hard to see how what the protestors wanted was in any way “extreme.” It is indisputable that freedom of speech, freedom from arbitrary arrest or detention, the right to be free from discrimination, and the right to work are foundational in New Zealand. Yet free speech was attacked as “spreading disinformation,” discrimination against the unvaccinated was vicious, and the right to work was removed for anyone who did not comply.

The right to freedom of religion was also compromised. An unjabbed Catholic man said he was locked out of his church, and a Hare Krishna practitioner said could not go to his temple.

The film shows the protestors engaging in many “extreme” activities such as singing songs, having sausage sizzles, and talking about love a lot. When the politicians refused to meet them – with the exception of New Zealand First leader Winston Peters – they doubled down by having more sausage sizzles, singing more songs, and passionately speaking of the need for people to treat each other well.

Enraged, the politicians unleashed the police who looked very much like the “river of violence and menace” that Wood mentioned. Except it was the state sending it, not the protestors. Even then, the reaction was mostly peaceful despite a number of the protestors being hurt.

New Zealand did not experience the highly suspicious involvement of its military, as occurred in Australia, Canada, and the United Kingdom. And the country turned out to have a functioning judiciary, which definitely was not the case in Australia, where judges discovered new meanings for the word “cowardice” (they were exempted from the jab).

Some sacked New Zealand police and defence force personnel challenged the vaccine mandate in the High Court and won. It is the point at which the documentary ends.

The Covid disaster showed that, when put under pressure, most Western countries do not have an effective judicial branch of government, an independent rule of law. So New Zealand’s High Court victory was not trivial. At least some of country’s institutions were willing to protect democracy.

What emerges from the film is a political class without conscience. It turns out the government’s COVID advisory group knew early on about the vaccine side effects and advised the cabinet against the mandates. But the government went ahead anyway.

Why? Managers are required to produce measurable outcomes, and the outcome was to get everyone jabbed. Anything else, such as listening to peoples’ objections, considering possible risks, abiding by the principles of democracy, or even remembering what it is to be human, were ignored. That icy callousness of the politicians makes quite a contrast with the heartfelt outbursts of the protestors.

Brownstone Institute

The Pandemic Excuse for a Corporatist Coup

Published on

From the Brownstone Institute

By Jeffrey A. Tucker

We’ve just come across a document hosted by the Department of Homeland Security, posted March 2023, but written in 2007, that amounts to a full-blown corporatist imposition on the US, abolishing anything remotely resembling the Bill of Rights and Constitutional law. It is right there in plain sight for anyone curious enough to dig.

There is nothing in it that you haven’t already experienced with lockdowns. What makes it interesting are the participants in the forging of the plan, which is pretty much the whole of corporate America as it stood in 2007. It was a George W. Bush initiative. The conclusions are startling.

“Quarantine is a legally enforceable declaration that a government body may institute over individuals potentially exposed to a disease, but who are not symptomatic. If enacted, Federal quarantine laws will be coordinated between CDC and State and local public health officials, and, if necessary, law enforcement personnel…The government may also enact travel restrictions to limit the movement of people and products between geographic areas in an effort to limit disease transmission and spread. Authorities are currently reviewing possible plans to curtail international travel upon a pandemic’s emergence overseas.

“Limiting public assembly opportunities also helps limit the spread of disease. Concert halls, movie theaters, sports arenas, shopping malls, and other large public gathering places might close indefinitely during a pandemic—whether because of voluntary closures or government-imposed closures. Similarly, officials may close schools and non-essential businesses during pandemic waves in an effort to significantly slow disease transmission rates. These strategies aim to prevent the close interaction of individuals, the primary conduit of spreading the influenza virus. Even taking steps such as limiting person-to-person interactions within a distance of three feet or avoiding instances of casual close contact, such as shaking hands, will help limit disease spread.”

There we have it: the pandemic plans. They once seemed abstract. In 2020, they became very real. Your rights were deleted. No more freedom even to have house guests. In those days, the rule was to enforce only three feet of distance rather than six feet of distance, neither of which had any basis in science. Indeed, the actual scientific literature even at that time recommended against any physical interventions designed to limit the spread of respiratory viruses. They were known not to work. The entire profession of public health accepted that.

Therefore, for many years before lockdowns wrecked economic functioning, there had been two parallel tracks in operation, one intellectual/academic and one imposed by state/corporate managers. They had nothing to do with each other. This situation persisted for the better part of 15 years. Suddenly in 2020, there was a reckoning, and the state/corporate managers won it. Seemingly out of nowhere, liberty as we have long known it was gone.

Back in 2005, I first came across a Bush administration scheme, an early draft of the above, that would have ended freedom as we know it. It was a scheme for combating the bird flu, which officials back then imagined would involve universal quarantines, business and event closures, travel restrictions, and more.

wrote: “Even if the flu does come, and taxpayers have coughed up, the government will surely have a ball imposing travel restrictions, shutting down schools and businesses, quarantining cities, and banning public gatherings…It is a serious matter when the government purports to plan to abolish all liberty and nationalize all economic life and put every business under the control of the military, especially in the name of a bug that seems largely restricted to the bird population. Perhaps we should pay more attention. Perhaps such plans for the total state ought to even ruffle our feathers a bit.”

For years I wrote about this topic, trying to get others interested. It was all there in black and white. At the drop of a hat, under the guise of a pandemic that only state managers can declare, real or drummed up, freedom itself could be abolished. These plans were never legislated, debated, or publicly discussed. They were simply posted as the result of various consultations with experts, who worked out their totalitarian fantasies as if scripting a Hollywood film.

The 2007 blueprint is more explicit than anything I’ve seen. It comes from the National Infrastructure Advisory Council, which “includes executive leaders from the private sector and state/local government who advise the White House on how to reduce physical and cyber risks and improve the security and resilience of the nation’s critical infrastructure sectors. The NIAC is administered on behalf of the President in accordance with the Federal Advisory Committee Act under the authority of the Secretary of the US Department of Homeland Security.”

And who sat on this committee in 2007 that decided that governments “may close schools and non-essential businesses”? Let us see.

  • Mr. Edmund G. Archuleta, General Manager, El Paso Water Utilities
  • Mr. Alfred R. Berkeley III, Chairman and CEO, Pipeline Trading Group, LLC, and former President and Vice Chairman of NASDAQ
  • Chief Rebecca F. Denlinger, Fire Chief, Cobb County (Ga.) Fire and Emergency Services
  • Chief Gilbert G. Gallegos, Police Chief (ret.), City of Albuquerque, N.M. Police Department
  • Ms. Martha H. Marsh, President and CEO, Stanford Hospital and Clinics
  • Mr. James B. Nicholson, President and CEO, PVS Chemical, Inc.
  • Mr. Erle A. Nye, Chairman Emeritus, TXU Corp., NIAC Chairman
  • Mr. Bruce A. Rohde, Chairman and CEO Emeritus, ConAgra Foods, Inc.
  • Mr. John W. Thompson, Chairman and CEO, Symantec Corporation
  • Mr. Brent Baglien, ConAgra Foods, Inc.
  • Mr. David Barron, Bell South
  • Mr. Dan Bart, TIA
  • Mr. Scott Blanchette, Healthways
  • Ms. Donna Burns, Georgia Emergency Management Agency
  • Mr. Rob Clyde, Symantec Corporation
  • Mr. Scott Culp, Microsoft
  • Mr. Clay Detlefsen, International Dairy Foods Association
  • Mr. Dave Engaldo, The Options Clearing Corporation
  • Ms. Courtenay Enright, Symantec Corporation
  • Mr. Gary Gardner, American Gas Association
  • Mr. Bob Garfield, American Frozen Foods Institute
  • Ms. Joan Gehrke, PVS Chemical, Inc.
  • Ms. Sarah Gordon, Symantec
  • Mr. Mike Hickey, Verizon
  • Mr. Ron Hicks, Anadarko Petroleum Corporation
  • Mr. George Hender, The Options Clearing Corporation
  • Mr. James Hunter, City of Albuquerque, NM Emergency Management
  • Mr. Stan Johnson, North American Electric Reliability Council (NERC)
  • Mr. David Jones, El Paso Corporation
  • Inspector Jay Kopstein, Operations Division, New York City Police Department (NYPD)
  • Ms. Tiffany Jones, Symantec Corporation
  • Mr. Bruce Larson, American Water
  • Mr. Charlie Lathram, Business Executives for National Security (BENS)/BellSouth
  • Mr. Turner Madden, Madden & Patton
  • Chief Mary Beth Michos, Prince William County (Va.) Fire and Rescue
  • Mr. Bill Muston, TXU Corp.
  • Mr. Vijay Nilekani, Nuclear Energy Institute
  • Mr. Phil Reitinger, Microsoft
  • Mr. Rob Rolfsen, Cisco Systems, Inc.
  • Mr. Tim Roxey, Constellation
  • Ms. Charyl Sarber, Symantec
  • Mr. Lyman Shaffer, Pacific Gas and Electric,
  • Ms. Diane VanDeHei, Association of Metropolitan Water Agencies (AMWA)
  • Ms. Susan Vismor, Mellon Financial Corporation
  • Mr. Ken Watson, Cisco Systems, Inc.
  • Mr. Greg Wells, Southwest Airlines
  • Mr. Gino Zucca, Cisco Systems, Inc.
  • Department of Health and Human Services (HHS) Resources
  • Dr. Bruce Gellin, Rockefeller Foundation
  • Dr. Mary Mazanec
  • Dr. Stuart Nightingale, CDC
  • Ms. Julie Schafer
  • Dr. Ben Schwartz, CDC
  • Department of Homeland Security (DHS) Resources
  • Mr. James Caverly, Director, Infrastructure Partnerships Division
  • Ms. Nancy Wong, NIAC Designated Federal Officer (DFO)
  • Ms. Jenny Menna, NIAC Designated Federal Officer (DFO)
  • Dr. Til Jolly
  • Mr. Jon MacLaren
  • Ms. Laverne Madison
  • Ms. Kathie McCracken
  • Mr. Bucky Owens
  • Mr. Dale Brown, Contractor
  • Mr. John Dragseth, IP attorney, Contractor
  • Mr. Jeff Green, Contractor
  • Mr. Tim McCabe, Contractor
  • Mr. William B. Anderson, ITS America
  • Mr. Michael Arceneaux, Association of Metropolitan Water Agencies (AMWA)
  • Mr. Chad Callaghan, Marriott Corporation
  • Mr. Ted Cromwell, American Chemistry Council (ACC)
  • Ms. Jeanne Dumas, American Trucking Association (ATA)
  • Ms. Joan Harris, US Department of Transportation, Office of the Secretary
  • Mr. Greg Hull, American Public Transportation Association
  • Mr. Joe LaRocca, National Retail Federation
  • Mr. Jack McKlveen, United Parcel Service (UPS)
  • Ms. Beth Montgomery, Wal-Mart
  • Dr. J. Patrick O’Neal, Georgia Office of EMS/Trauma/EP
  • Mr. Roger Platt, The Real Estate Roundtable
  • Mr. Martin Rojas, American Trucking Association (ATA)
  • Mr. Timothy Sargent, Senior Chief, Economic Analysis and Forecasting Division, Economic and Fiscal Policy Branch, Finance Canada

In other words, big everything: food, energy, retail, computers, water, and you name it. It’s a corporatist dream team.

Consider ConAgra itself. What is that? It is Banquet, Chef Boyardee, Healthy Choice, Orville Redenbacher’s, Reddi-Wip, Slim Jim, Hunt’s Peter Pan Egg Beaters, Hebrew National, Marie Callender’s, P.F. Chang’s, Ranch Style Beans, Ro*Tel, Wolf Brand Chili, Angie’s, Duke’s, Gardein, Frontera, Bertolli, among many other seemingly independent brands that are all actually one company.

Now, ask yourself: why might all these companies favor a plan for lockdowns? Why might WalMart, for example? It stands to reason. Lockdowns are a massive interference with competitive capitalism. They provide the best possible subsidy to big business while shutting down independent small businesses and putting them at a huge disadvantage once the opening up happens.

In other words, it is an industrial racket, very much akin to interwar-style fascism, a corporatist combination of big business and big government. Throw pharma into the mix and you see exactly what came to pass in 2020, which amounted to the largest transfer of wealth from small and medium-sized business plus the middle class to wealthy industrialists in the history of humanity.

The document is open even about managing information flows: “The public and private sectors should align their communications, exercises, investments, and support activities absolutely with both the plan and priorities during a pandemic influenza event. Continue data gathering, analysis, reporting, and open review.”

There is nothing in any of this that fits with any Western tradition of law and liberty. Nothing. It was never approved by any democratic means. It was never part of any political campaign. It has never been the subject of any serious media examination. No think tank has ever pushed back on such plans in any systematic way.

The last serious attempt to debunk this whole apparatus was from D.H. Henderson in 2006. His two co-authors on that paper eventually came around to going along with lockdowns of 2020. Henderson died in 2016. One of the co-authors of the original article told me that if Dr. Henderson had been around, instead of Dr. Fauci, the lockdowns would never have taken place.

Here we are four years following the deployment of this lockdown machinery, and we are witness to what it destroys. It would be nice to say that the entire apparatus and theory behind it have been fully discredited.

But that is not correct. All the plans are still in place. There have been no changes in federal law. Not one effort has been made to dismantle the corporatist/biosecurity planning state that made all this possible. Every bit of it is in place for the next go-around.

Much of the authority for this whole coup traces to the Public Health Services Act of 1944, which was passed in wartime. For the first time in US history, it gave the federal government the power to quarantine. Even when the Biden administration was looking for some basis to justify its transportation mask mandate, it fell back to this one piece of legislation.

If anyone really wants to get to the root of this problem, there are decisive steps that need to be taken. The indemnification of pharma from liability for harm needs to be repealed. The court precedent of forced shots in Jacobson needs to be overthrown. But even more fundamentally, the quarantine power itself has to go, and that means the full repeal of the Public Health Services Act of 1944. That is the root of the problem. Freedom will not be safe until it is uprooted.

As it stands right now, everything that unfolded in 2020 and 2021 can happen again. Indeed, the plans are in place for exactly that.

Author

Jeffrey Tucker is Founder, Author, and President at Brownstone Institute. He is also Senior Economics Columnist for Epoch Times, author of 10 books, including Life After Lockdown, and many thousands of articles in the scholarly and popular press. He speaks widely on topics of economics, technology, social philosophy, and culture.

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COVID-19

ArriveCAN charges dropped, shielding the controversial program from constitutional scrutiny

Published on

News release from the Justice Centre for Constitutional Freedoms 

The Justice Centre for Constitutional Freedoms announces that City of Mississauga prosecutors have withdrawn five charges against four Canadians who refused to comply with ArriveCAN requirements at the Toronto Pearson International Airport.

The withdrawn charges include those against Elim Sly-Hooten of British Columbia. After arriving in Toronto from the Netherlands, Mr. Sly-Hooten felt that his personal medical information should remain private and chose not to disclose his vaccination status via ArriveCAN. In response, Peel Regional Police and Public Health Agency of Canada personnel detained him. Under pressure and without counsel, Mr. Sly-Hooten broke down and revealed his vaccination status. He received a $5,000 ticket for violating the Quarantine Act and was ordered to quarantine in his home for 14 days.

With help from the Justice Centre, Mr. Sly-Hooten launched a constitutional challenge against ArriveCAN, citing his right to liberty, his right to be protected from unreasonable search and seizure, his right to be free from arbitrary arrest and detention, and his right to counsel after arrest and detention – all protected by the Canadian Charter of Rights and Freedoms.

Prosecutors also withdrew tickets against Mark Spence, Aaron Grubb, and Evan Kraayenbrink. Like Mr. Sly-Hooten, each were charged for choosing not to provide information via ArriveCAN and were ordered to quarantine for 14 days. Prosecutors have withdrawn the charges because they believe it is not in the public interest to expend further resources on a trial. This outcome follows a similar pattern of ArriveCAN-related charges being dropped before their trials in what appears to be an attempt to shield the controversial program from constitutional scrutiny. In other words, charges are being dropped before the merits of constitutional challenges to ArriveCAN can be heard by the courts.

Beside the constitutional question, ArriveCAN has been dogged by bad publicity since its implementation. Canada Border Services Agency launched ArriveCAN in April 2020 in response to the World Health Organization’s declaration of a global pandemic. Since then, ArriveCAN has cost Canadians an estimated $59.5 million (not counting in-house costs), according to the Auditor General of Canada in her February 12, 2024 performance audit report.

ArriveCAN was mandatory for all air, land, and marine travellers between November 2021 and October 2022. During that time, the program erroneously ordered 10,000 Canadians to quarantine in a significant breach of the Privacy Act, according to a 2023 report from the Office of the Privacy Commissioner of Canada. The program violated many of the rights and freedoms protected by the Canadian Charter of Rights and Freedoms.

Lawyer Chris Fleury stated, “This outcome is bittersweet for each of our clients. It is positive for each of them personally. On the other hand, they were deeply interested in seeking a determination of the constitutionality of the irrational and unscientific decision forcing unvaccinated Canadians to quarantine. The federal government has again escaped accountability for Covid policy decisions that breached Canadians’ Charter rights.”

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