The world offers comfort … but Ron Watkins was not made for comfort

Ron Watkins is running for Congress in Arizona


Ron Watkins, long-suspected of being “Q”, the mysterious figure behind the QAnon conspiracy theory and one of the leading purveyors of the “Big Lie” that the 2020 election was stolen from President Trump, announced his candidacy for Congress in Arizona this week.

In a video posted to the social media platform Telegram, Watkins said that he was running for the Republican nomination in Arizona’s 1st Congressional District to defeat the “dirtiest Democrat in the D.C. swamp,” incumbent Congressman Tom O’Halleran, who has held the seat for four years.

“We must stay vigilant and keep up the pressure both here in Arizona and throughout the country to indict any and all criminals who have facilitated election fraud,” Watkins said. “President Trump had his election stolen not just in Arizona, but in other states too. We must now take this fight to Washington, D.C., and vote out all the dirty Democrats who have stolen our republic.”

While Watkins has repeatedly said on his channel that there “is no QAnon,” comments replying to his campaign announcement are flooding in with QAnon slogans and ideology. QAnon influencers use the phrase “There is no QAnon” to suggest that it’s a media construct, and that adherents disseminating “information” are nonviolent “patriots.”

Since President Biden’s victory over former President Trump in the 2020 election, QAnon has splintered into different factions but the general ideology remains the same: Democrats and a cabal of pedophiles and devil worshipers control the government and must be stopped.

Watkins was banned from Twitter two days after the January 6 insurrection attempt on the steps of the U.S. Capitol and has since amassed over 436,000 subscribers on Telegram. He has repeatedly pushed the Big Lie on Telegram, and was instrumental in seeding disinformation around the Republican state Senate-ordered Maricopa County election review this summer.

He used to be the administrator of the conspiracy-laden 8chan message board, where QAnon flourished. In mid-winter 2020, Watkins announced he was stepping down as the site’s administrator and since then, he has since continued to promote conspiracy theories about the 2020 election with other right-wing allies of Donald Trump, including MyPillow CEO Mike Lindell. Watkins has also endorsed other Republican candidates for office in Arizona, recently meeting with Trump-endorsed gubernatorial candidate Kari Lake, a former news anchor now running for the Republican nomination in the state. It is unclear if Watkins lives in the district, but previously he lived in Japan.

Arizona’s 1st District is currently the state’s largest district, and is one of its more competitive ones. O’Halleran won there by just three points in 2020, and is being targeted by the National Republican Congressional Committee in 2022. The state’s independent redistricting commission is in the process of drawing maps, but a draft released last week shrunk the size of the district in a way that would make it slightly more Republican.




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The U.S. Strategic Framework for the Indo-Pacific was declassified by the Trump administration. A section on Taiwan warns that the Chinese regime would become more aggressive as it pushes harder for annexation of Taiwan. The document recommends the United States to help Taiwan improve defense strategy and capabilities, including stationing a “combat-credible” U.S. military force in Taiwan to prevent Chinese domination.

Part of the U.S. commitment is to provide Taiwan with the means to defend its borders. In 2020 alone, the United States sold $5 billion worth of weapons to the island nation. Beijing opposes U.S. troops training the Taiwanese military and has also lodged complaints each time Washington sold weapons to Taiwan. Additionally, the CCP has condemned the existences of both the Quad partnership and the new AUKUS pact—U.S.-led multilateral strategies to contain China in the Indo-Pacific. More recently, Beijing criticized Australia’s purchase of U.S. nuclear submarines. It seems the Chinese regime sees itself as the only power in the region that should be allowed to improve its military capabilities.

US Military Support for Taiwan Angers Beijing

If the United States and China go to war, Taiwan could likely be the trigger.

A recent report alleged that roughly 24 members of U.S. special operations and support troops have been conducting training for the Taiwanese military over the past year.

President Joe Biden claims that he and Chinese leader Xi Jinping spoke about the Taiwan situation, and have both agreed to abide by “the agreement.” While it is unclear which agreement Biden was referring to, it is presumed that he meant the “one-China” policy. Under this policy, the United States recognizes Taiwan and China as a single entity, but has no official opinion on Taiwan’s sovereignty or who rules whom.

Under a separate agreement, the 1979 Taiwan Relations Act, the United States promised to provide Taiwan the means to defend itself. There is an understanding between the two countries, however, that Taiwan cannot declare independence unilaterally without notifying the United States. Additionally, the United States is not obligated to fight if Taiwan declares independence unilaterally.

The Chinese Communist Party (CCP) has called for the United States to cut off military ties with Taiwan. CCP officials said that the Washington should recognize the sensitivity of the issue and that Beijing would take every action to protect China’s borders. As the CCP claims ownership of Taiwan, it interprets any support for the independence of Taiwan as an infringement on China’s sovereignty. By extrapolation, the CCP believes that if China owns Taiwan, it would also control the sea and airspace around the island nation.

Over the past year, the People’s Liberation Army (PLA) Air Force has flown 800 sorties into Taiwanese airspace. Taiwanese President Tsai Ing-wen warned that tensions had recently escalated. Taiwanese Defense Minister Chiu Kuo-cheng said that cross-strait tensions were the worst in 40 years. Recently, the PLA Air Force flew almost 150 warplanes into Taiwan’s air defense identification zone (ADIZ), the largest single violation of Taiwanese airspace to date.

China’s ambassador to the Association of Southeast Asian Nations (ASEAN), Deng Xijun, tweeted that by dispatching so many warplanes near Taiwan, the CCP “sent [a] strong warning to the Taiwan secessionists and their foreign supporters.” The Biden administration responded by confirming that the U.S. commitment to Taiwan remained “rock solid.”

So far, the current administration has not only maintained Trump-era policies and U.S. engagement with Taiwan, but even sent an unofficial delegation to Taipei, comprised of a former senator and two former U.S. deputy secretaries of state.

In a move that many believe is a prelude to a Taiwan invasion, the CCP has been expanding China’s military at a rapid pace. According to a 2020 defense report by the the U.S. Navy, U.S. Marines, and U.S. Coast Guard, China had more than tripled the size of its navy over the past 20 years and that it now has more ships, but not necessarily more firepower than the United States.

Taiwanese Defense Minister Chiu Kuo-cheng predicted that by 2025, the PLA would be strong enough to invade Taiwan.

Even while suffering an economic slowdown caused by the pandemic response, China increased its defense spending by 6.8 percent, raising their 2020 defense budget to $210 billion. The PLA already maintains 3 million troops, while it is pouring more money into aircraft carriers, nuclear-powered submarines, and stealth fighters.

Premier Li Keqiang, addressing a meeting of the National People’s Congress (China’s rubber-stamp legislature), said that the CCP would “thoroughly implement Xi Jinping’s thinking on strengthening the armed forces and the military strategy … boost military training and preparedness … enhance the military’s strategic capacity to protect the sovereignty, security, and development interests of our country.”

In the face of an increasing threat from the CCP, U.S. Assistant Secretary of Defense for Special Operations Christopher Maier told the Senate Armed Services Committee during his confirmation hearing that the United States should consider sending troops to Taiwan to train their defense forces.

Matt Pottinger, former deputy national security adviser under the Trump administration and a current visiting fellow at the Hoover Institution, suggested that Taiwan should invest in the most lethal but least expensive weapons that could complicate an invasion by the PLA. These include anti-ship missiles, smart sea mines, and well-trained reserve and auxiliary forces.

China has missiles:

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Zalewski claims to have an analysis of microscope information. The English translation quality is unknown.


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Labor strikes at Boeing

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Oct 14, 2021 – Economy & Business
10,000 John Deere workers strike over contract

Some 10,000 unionized Deere & Company workers went on strike early Thursday after rejecting a contract proposal from the agriculture equipment manufacturer.

The big picture: The John Deere tractors maker and negotiators for the United Automobile Workers (UAW) reached a deal on the proposal earlier this month. 90% of union members voted against the agreement, per Reuters.

The strikers have set up pickets at John Deere’s U.S. facilities, according to a UAW statement.
What they’re saying: “Our members at John Deere strike for the ability to earn a decent living, retire with dignity and establish fair work rules,” said Chuck Browning, vice president and director of the UAW’s Agricultural Implement Department in a statement.

“We stay committed to bargaining until our members’ goals are achieved,” Browning added.
Deere said it “remained committed to reaching a new agreement” and it “had not yet estimated when it would complete negotiations,” Reuters notes.

Thousands of John Deere workers hit the picket line this week after the union smacked down a new worker contract from the farm and equipment maker.

Why it matters: There’s a wave of worker angst spreading across the country. They wield new power that’s come with a historic worker shortage.

“We’ve never had the deck stacked in our advantage the way it is now,” Chris Laursen, a worker at an Ottha, Iowa-based John Deere plant told the New York Times.
“The company is reaping such rewards, but we’re fighting over crumbs here.”
From Hollywood studios to factories, the work stoppages could threaten America’s recovery — already plagued by a shortage of stuff.

The union that represents Hollywood crews — 60,000 film set workers around the country — is threatening to strike starting Monday, putting more pressure on studios to offer better labor conditions and higher pay.
If it happens, it would “bring film and television productions across the country to a standstill and would be the biggest Hollywood labor dispute in more than a decade,” the LA Times reports.
And for the first time in almost 50 years, production at Kellogg cereal plants across America is in limbo as 1,400 workers walked off the job in a bid for better benefits (and worries about job outsourcing), threatening the supply of cereal on shelves.

The big picture: Workers are harder to come by, possibly giving employees more leverage for demands. That could be one reason why strikes, while rebounding, are still well below pre-pandemic levels.

But some employers aren’t bending first, causing enough of a stalemate to invite strikes in the first place.
The bottom line: Workers — fed up that employers’ pandemic-era boom times aren’t translating into better pay, benefits and working conditions — are hitting the picket lines.

“Kellogg is making record profits. The executives are reaping the benefits off our backs,” Daniel Osborn, a maintenance planner at Kellogg’s Omaha, Nebraska, plant told Axios last week.
Osborn is the local head of the national union behind the weeks-long strike at Nabisco factories that ended after the company agreed to the workers’ request to keep their health care plans intact.


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