U.S. Department of Homeland Security is mobilizing to stop a possible protest by U.S. trucks inspired by Canadian truckers who have protested for several weeks against the vaccine mandate and other COVID-19-related measures. According to the Associated Press, “the White House indicated that it is requesting extra staff for the Super Bowl in case of an emergency,” as the “convoy could be underway in Southern California this weekend.”
The surge is happening despite the fact that the U.S. trucker convoy is—by the DHS’s own admission—more aspirational than anything.
The DHS sent a Tuesday message to all levels of federal, state and local law enforcement. It stated that “this event seems to be only aspirational because it is only being discussed on the internet and we don’t have any information suggesting the event actually is being organized.”
According to the memo, “There is no evidence of any planned violence or civil unrest at this time.”
The DHS noted that while there was some talk of an online convoy, it did not appear that any individuals who were discussing the activities are involved in any activity other than First Amendment-protected. DHS continues to be concerned that the events may have important public safety implications, or could be exploited to inspire others to act in violent ways by ideologically motivated people.
That federal law enforcement is springing into action anyway isn’t surprising—it’s forever creating reasons to enact more of a police state around the Super Bowl, with terrorism, counterfeit goods, and sex trafficking serving as previous pretenses. This year, it seems that a convoy of truckers may be doing the job.
One of many reasons that the department points to for their extreme presence at Super Bowl is the increased operation.
DHS’s Super Bowl LVI support includes over 500 DHS staff providing security support to anti-human trafficking, enforcement and prevention support. Intellectual property enforcement. Chemical, biological, radiological and nuclear detection technologies. Venue, cyber and infrastructure security assessments. Intelligence analysis and threat assessments. Real-time reporting on our partner.
Homeland Security Investigations says it will investigate“During the Super Bowl, arresting and detaining people who exploit children and conduct human trafficking and identifying, rescuing and helping victims of such crimes.” (SuchHomeland Security’s “human trafficking” efforts tend to result in federal agents being given hand jobs, scaring sex workers and arresting immigrant immigrants.
Rumours of truck protests in the USA simply suggest that there will be more food at Super Bowl this year.
Keep in mind: Say something if you see it.
— Homeland Security (@DHSgov) February 11, 2022
Canadian leaders are also being urged by the Biden administration to be more tough with truckers protesting.
Biden’s administration asked Prime Minister Justin Trudeau to make use of federal power to lift the Canadian truck blockade. The protest was against Canada’s COVID-19 regulations. Auto plants across the border were forced to close down or reduce production due to the massive demonstration.
For the fourth day straight, hundreds of truckers participated in what they called the Freedom Convoy. They blocked the Ambassador Bridge that connects Windsor (Ontario) to Detroit. It disrupted the flow and supply of parts, auto parts, and other goods between the two countries.
According to The White House, Transportation Secretary Pete Buttigieg and Homeland Security Secretary Alejandro Mayorkas spoke to their Canadian counterparts. They urged them both for help in resolving the dispute.
The Canadian protests have received millions of dollars in donations, first through GoFundMe and then—once GoFundMe rejected them—through another crowdfunding platform, GiveSendGo.
Doug Ford, the Ontario Premier has convinced the Ontario Superior Court of Justice that the donation from GiveSendGo should be frozen.
Meanwhile, a copycat protest has begun in France. Notes: “Dozens upon dozens of vehicles and trucks left south France Wednesday to head for Paris in support of the country’s vaccination program.” The New York Times:
Similar convoys are scheduled to follow on Thursday and Friday the demonstrators from France who include both motorcyclists as well as car drivers. The movement’s name, the “Convoi de la Liberté,” is a direct translation of Canada’s “Freedom Convoy.”
Senate approves EARN IT Act. This bill continues to be criticized. The revived EARN IT Act—a FOSTA redux that would amend Section 230 under the guise of protecting children—passed out of the Senate Judiciary Committee yesterday.
More than 60 civil rights and civil liberties organizations are calling for Congress NotTo pass this bill.
The Wikimedia Foundation is one of these organizations. It recently issued a warning entitled “What you’ve heard Is true.” The EARN IT Act is catastrophic for free speech and for privacy — and for Wikipedia.”
This week’s US Senate Judiciary Committee hearing the EARN IT Act is an attempt to undermine digital safety. It may interfere with operation of @WikipediaTake power from the volunteer community and become one. Learn more: https://t.co/2JhfKz4o5r https://t.co/gnkoWnChBn
— Wikimedia Foundation (@Wikimedia) February 9, 2022
Oregon Democratic Sen. Ron Wyden—one of the original co-authors of Section 230—has also been crusading against the EARN IT Act.
The #EARNITActSESTA FOSTA is on steroids. SESTA-FOSTA didn’t help victims. It increased sex trafficking: https://t.co/UGj0F5k7l6
— Ron Wyden (@RonWyden) February 10, 2022
Against climate despair. Matt Yglesias says, “We must be concerned regarding climate change,” but that we should not be overwhelmed by apocalyptic dread or feelings of helplessness.” He writes in a post tackling “climate anxious,” unjustified fear mongering and the way people overlook the large middle between worst- and best-case climate scenarios.
“It is too late to act on climate change.” “Runaway climate warming is already underway; climate change cannot be stopped.” “Life on Earth/human civilization are coming to an abrupt halt” [5 to 30] years.” These claims have no scientific basis, but I keep hearing them. (5/12)
— Daniel Swain (@Weather_West) February 7, 2022
A new University of Colorado study has shown that worst-case scenarios of climate change are extremely unlikely.
There are reasonsRon Bailey, a spokesman for’s, wrote earlier this week about the findings of that study. Bailey notes that “dire” predictions are based on scenarios in which carbon dioxide levels would rise to 1,400ppm by 2100. This scenario assumes agricultural and fossil fuel emissions. Thanks to developments in clean energy and the reduction of coal dependence, these emissions will not be as high. One of the major ways in which the [worst-case]Bailey notes that this scenario is not plausible because it predicts a sixfold increase in global coal consumption per person by 2100.” Bailey says. Future coal consumption, however, is expected to decline or remain constant.
Is America now more free-spirited because of the Pandemic? Scott Lincicome (director of general economics, Cato Institute) writes:
A funny thing happened along our path to democratic socialistism. America actually pushed back. Across the country, in all sorts of ways, Americans reacted to the state’s activism, overreach, incoherence, and incompetence and… kinda, sorta, embraced libertarianism. Some writers now notice. Gerard Baker from the Wall Street Journal believes it’s premature to label this “libertarian moment”. Baker is using the commonly used term for the abrupt onset fiscally conservative but socially liberal policies. These policies then retreat after invocation. We seem to be at least close to a place where we can question the wisdom and effectiveness of increasing state control. Sam Goldman, a conservative columnist, sees something very similar. He believes there’s a “new libertarian moment”, which has come in the form of opposition to restrictions on personal behavior, suspicion of expert authorities, and freedom speech for controversial views. These are all dominant themes in center right argumentation and activism.
While I agree with Baker and Goldman that America is entering a new “libertarian moment”, the reasons are almost completely different. These articles focus on the resistance of the populist to pandemic policy and restriction. This has an evocative whiff from what Ross Douthat (New York Times) once described as “folk Libertarianism”. However, it is, like most populist movements, unwieldy incoherent and most likely ephemeral. As we’ve discussed, in fact, recent history has taught quite well that libertarian-looking populist movements can—and in last decade’s case certainly did—quickly morph into rather un-libertarian things.
By contrast, I see the “libertarian moment” elsewhere—and in a more serious and optimistic direction. The pandemic appears to have brought about a series of significant and long-lasting policy changes, along with a shift in the elite mindset regarding certain economic topics. All these are clearly in my liberty-oriented wheelhouse.
Find out more.
• What scenario would prompt President Joe Biden to send U.S. troops to Ukraine to rescue Americans there? Biden stated to Lester Holt of NBC News that there is no such scenario. “When Russia and Americans begin shooting at each other it is a war.”
• The CIA “has for years been collecting in bulk, without a warrant, some kind of data that can affect Americans’ privacy, according to a newly declassified letter by two senators,” The New York Times reports.
• Build Back Never?
• Biden’s approval rating hits a new low.
• Should the feds end no-knock warrants? Families of Breonna Taylor, Amir Locke and Amir Locke agree.
• Eleven states this week have moved to end mask mandates.
• The number of abortions performed in Texas “fell by 60% in the first month under the most restrictive abortion law in the U.S. in decades,” new figures show.
• Rethinking preschool.
• Erik Wemple dissectsSarah Palin, defamation case
• Freddie deBoer tears into a recent Brookings Institution study on online harassment.
• Check out the Foundation for Individual Rights in Education’s Super Bowl commercial:
OUR PRIMETIME AD FOR THE OLYMPICS @EnesFreedomKnows how it feels to be deprived of freedom speech in a country.
— FIRE (@TheFIREorg) February 7, 2022