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As every fan of the old Perry Mason show remembers, courtroom witnesses swear “to tell the truth, the whole truth, and nothing but the truth.”

There’s a reason for that particular choice of words. A pattern of selective omissions in an otherwise entirely truthful presentation can easily mislead us as much as any outright lie. And under certain circumstances, such omissions may be made necessary by powerful outside forces, so that even the most well-intentioned writer is faced with the difficult choice of either excluding certain elements from his analysis or having his important work denied a proper audience. I have sometimes faced this dilemma myself, but over the last few years, my lengthy American Pravda series has charted those gaping lacunae in our received accounts of modern world history, as I have sought to provide a historical counter-narrative of the last one hundred years.

Careful reexaminations of events from fifty or sixty years ago may be interesting, but those of the present day have far greater importance, and this is particularly true with regard to the Covid-19 epidemic that has engulfed the world since early 2020. Millions have already died, including many hundreds of thousands of Americans, with a newly released research study by the University of Washington’s authoritative Institute for Health Metrics and Evaluation (IHME) now suggesting that our domestic death-toll has already exceeded 900,000. This global outbreak first began in Wuhan, and the nature of its origin has become a major flashpoint in the new Cold War between China and America, with the trajectory of that conflict having only slightly changed as Trump Neocons have been replaced by Biden Neocons at the helm of our foreign policy.

Two months ago I published a lengthy article summarizing much of the information from the first year of the outbreak and focusing upon the heated debate regarding the origins of the virus. Aside from the reports of the teams of investigative journalists at the New York Times, the Wall Street Journal, and the Associated Press, several very long articles by independent journalists and researchers have constituted my main sources of information, including:

This compendium of crucial research has now received a major addition, a 11,000 word analysis of the likely origins of Covid-19 by Nicholas Wade, a distinguished former science reporter and editor, who had spent more than four decades at the New York Times, Science, and Nature, and the author of several excellent books dealing with anthropology and evolutionary biology.

Suppressing Possible Artificial Origins as “a Conspiracy Theory”

The central focus of both Baker and Wade is indicated by their closely-related titles, namely the origins of the virus and whether it was the product of a laboratory, presumably the Wuhan Institute of Virology, then later released in a tragic accident. Both these authors strongly lean toward that latter possibility, but take somewhat different approaches. While Baker, a prominent novelist and liberal public intellectual, must rely upon general arguments or merely reports the opinions of the experts that he interviewed, Wade deploys his strong scientific background to build a persuasive case for that same conclusion.

From nearly the beginning of the epidemic, the position taken by the mainstream media had been that Covid-19 was very likely natural in origin, and although President Trump and some of his political allies soon loudly claimed otherwise, the perceived scientific consensus remained unchanged.

But as Wade demonstrates, that supposed consensus was largely illusory, having been shaped by two early items that appeared in prestigious scientific publications. On February 19, 2020, the Lancet had published a statement signed by 27 virologists and other noted scientists that declared: “We stand together to strongly condemn conspiracy theories suggesting that COVID-19 does not have a natural origin,” and that “[scientists] overwhelmingly conclude that this coronavirus originated in wildlife.” Then the following month Nature Medicine published an analysis by five virologists providing some theoretical arguments against any artificial origin, stating that: “Our analyses clearly show that SARS-CoV-2 is not a laboratory construct or a purposefully manipulated virus.”

As We Rapidly Approach a Million American Deaths

More Than a Million Dead Americans?

Winston Churchill famously observed that in wartime the truth must be surrounded by a bodyguard of lies. Many of my own long and most controversial articles have followed a somewhat analogous presentation, with the opening sections that sometimes run hundreds of words or longer often being rather innocuous or even somewhat off-topic. These are intended to serve as a bland or sugar-coated introduction to the far more dangerous material that then follows, which might otherwise tend to alarm and deter the casual reader if introduced too quickly.

Although I think this approach has its benefits, there are disadvantages as well. An unknown number of casual or busy readers may abandon the piece at that early stage, finding it too uninteresting to continue through to the more explosive elements. So there is probably value in extracting and highlighting some of the latter for a different sort of audience, and this may be especially true with regard to the current Covid-19 outbreak in America, which recently marked its first anniversary.

Almost exactly one year ago on March 16th, 2020, the local public health officers of the San Francisco Bay region, including Dr. Sarah Cody of my own Santa Clara County, suddenly imposed a sweeping lockdown order upon their nearly seven million residents, a government action unprecedented in American history. At that point, our country had suffered perhaps a dozen recorded deaths, and relatively little public attention had been focused on the growing danger. But experts believed that the virus was rapidly and invisibly spreading, and this dramatic Bay Area decision was quickly copied elsewhere, first in Los Angeles, then throughout the entire state of California, and soon afterward in other large states such as New York and Illinois. A temporary lockdown of three weeks was gradually extended to several months, with masking and social-distancing suddenly becoming a major part of everyday life throughout much of our country.

Not long afterward, federal health officials released a shocking warning that the new disease might eventually claim as many as 100,000 to 240,000 American lives. For over a century, nothing like that had ever happened in our country and with existing deaths still merely numbering in the dozens, these gigantic “worst case” estimates were ridiculed by various ideological camps and disbelieving individuals as absurdly inflated and alarmist. Yet today the official Covid-19 death toll stands at around 550,000, a figure more than twice as high as the upper bound of that supposedly exaggerated projection.

From the very beginning, “Covid Skeptics” have fiercely disputed such official totals. They have noted the considerable confusion between “dying from Covid-19” and “dying with Covid-19,” plausibly arguing that such postmortem diagnoses are often ambiguous, with many deaths of infected individuals having primarily been due to other factors. But it also seems quite likely that many Covid-19 deaths may not have been officially recorded as such. Given such problems of both over-counting and under-counting, the most reliable metric would be the total number of “excess deaths,” those above and beyond the normal figure for a given period. But considering these much more solid estimates for the actual death toll suffered during our current epidemic actually reveals a picture far worse than those official numbers.

Two months ago a large team of nearly a dozen Wall Street Journal reporters published a 2,000 word article entitled “The Covid-19 Death Toll Is Even Worse Than It Looks” which carefully analyzed the worldwide losses, finding that the CDC figures for total deaths during the first 11 months of 2020 suggested some grim conclusions:

In the U.S. alone, Centers for Disease Control and Prevention data show more than 475,000 excess deaths through early December, a time frame that also included about 281,000 deaths linked to Covid-19, according to Johns Hopkins University.

The pandemic led U.S. deaths to climb at least 10% last year. Typically U.S. deaths grow about 1.6% a year as the population grows and ages.

Since that date, our official count of Covid-19 fatalities has nearly doubled, so if the same ratio of “excess” deaths has remained unchanged, well over 900,000 Americans have now died as a consequence of the epidemic. I have seen other estimates that are significantly lower, but even these still indicate that we have suffered nearly 800,000 additional deaths during the first twelve months of the disease outbreak, amounting to the greatest loss of life in American national history, far surpassing the combined total of all our foreign wars, and even exceeding the four bloody years of our Civil War, though admittedly relative to a much larger population base.

Moreover, the sluggish implementation of our national vaccination program ensures that these totals will continue to climb throughout much of the remaining year and are almost certain to break the million mark. Last spring, predictions that more than a million Americans would die despite our unprecedented disease control efforts might have been dismissed as total lunacy, but such numbers are now on the verge of becoming our actual reality. We should hardly be surprised that the CDC has estimated that by mid-2020 American life-expectancies had already dropped by a full year, their greatest decline since World War II.

A leading data website provides a convenient graph of the monthly mortality figures:

The public health measures implemented to control this severe epidemic have remained controversial in various political quarters, and I have become somewhat agnostic regarding the relative impact of the different policies such as lockdowns, masking, and social-distancing. Indeed, a very long and comprehensive recent analysis argues that lockdowns—at least the rather intermittent and half-hearted ones used throughout the West—have had little impact upon ultimate deaths. But it seems almost undeniable that without some combination of these various approaches, our national death toll would have been far worse.


At the beginning of this month, I’d released eBook versions of my American Pravda and Meritocracy article collections, each running a hefty 300,000 words or more, and together containing nearly all my published writings of the last thirty years, with the bulk of the material having been produced in the last few. The response was quite positive, and the eBooks have already been downloaded nearly 10,000 times, quite an improvement from the 15 or 20 copies that I’d sold in hardcover on Amazon over the last twelve months. Although I personally prefer reading lengthy works in hard copy, it’s clear than many others feel differently, especially if the price is free.

However, a couple of commenters claimed that the ancient art of reading itself was quickly falling into disuse among the younger generation, at least if the length of the text is greater than a few Tweets. Therefore, they strongly urged me to consider producing audio versions of my articles, arguing that this format might have far greater reach than the printed word, as demonstrated by the growing popularity of podcasts. While I think the looming disappearance of reading may be somewhat exaggerated, the suggestion seemed a very reasonable one. After all, including time spent on reading, research, and writing, the body of work had probably absorbed well over 15,000 hours of my time to produce, and adding just a sliver more effort to bring it to an additional audience would probably be extremely cost-effective.

One problem I faced is that so much of my article content is complex, highly specialized, and quite controversial, so I can’t imagine recruiting someone else to produce professionally-read versions would work. Even if I took that approach, the time I’d need to spend supervising, reviewing, and correcting the output would almost certainly exceed the time required to do the job myself, so the latter choice seemed the only realistic option. Twenty years ago when I was doing political campaigns, I would work with a crew of professionals at local studios doing endless takes to get the sixty-second radio spots exactly right, but comparable hardware and software is now available for any personal computer. And given the huge volume of material, I was aiming at “good enough” rather than professional perfection, while the content of my articles was anyway far more important than the stylistic delivery.

I recorded and posted a couple of short sample audio articles, and most of the listeners seemed to think that they fell into the “good enough” category. So gritting my teeth, I went ahead and diligently spent the last three weeks producing audio versions of nearly 100 of my articles, including all the longer and more substantial ones. Amazingly enough, my voice held out in reading, reviewing, and correcting those 500,000 words of text, which I did my best to keep in the “good enough” category. And since the project probably absorbed less than 1% of the original writing effort, it certainly seemed a worthwhile effort.

All the audio files are in the standard mp3 format and I’ll soon be making them available in standard venues such as SoundCloud and YouTube, but for now here’s the complete listing, including the time-length of each item. Just click the Speaker icon, listen to the output, and see what you think. The audio versions of several of my longest articles run two or three hours, so I’ve also provided these broken into multiple parts.

All the works are grouped in categories: my American Pravda series, mostly produced in the last few years; my articles on race, ethnicity, and social policy, which had been the main focus of my writing during the previous two decades from the early 1990s onward; my Economics articles, mostly connected with raising the Minimum Wage; and my other writings. Also, all individual article pages with available audio versions now provide that just above the text itself.

Just below these new audio file links, I’ve also grouped several of my podcast interviews from the last couple of years, most of which run an hour or longer.

Each of my two major eBook collections are enormously long, and contain numerous lengthy and important individual articles, some of which themselves run 20,000 words or longer. Therefore, I’ve also decided to release about a dozen of these as stand-alone eBooks, which are listed below, together with the two full collections.

Last year, Facebook banned our website and Google deranked all our pages, substantially reducing our ability to bring our content to the attention of a broader audience. Since all these mp3 audio files or eBooks are being made freely available without cost, please consider widely redistributing these files on other websites or content distribution channels, thereby making the material available to many additional individuals.

Audio Versions of Articles


The Life and Legacy of Lt. Gen. William Odom
The American Conservative • September 8, 2008 • 2,500 Words • 19m
Was Rambo Right?
The American Conservative • May 25, 2010 • 1,300 Words • 9m
China’s Rise, America’s Fall
The American Conservative • April 17, 2012 • 6,600 Words • 54m
Chinese Melamine and American Vioxx: A Comparison
The American Conservative 13m • April 17, 2012 • 1,800 Words • 14m
The Myth of American Meritocracy
The American Conservative • November 28, 2012 • 26,200 Words • 2h45m
Audio Segments: Part 1, Part 2, Part 3, Part 4, Part 5, Part 6
Our American Pravda
The American Conservative • April 29, 2013 • 4,500 Words • 33m
John McCain: When “Tokyo Rose” Ran for President
The Unz Review • March 9, 2015 • 4,200 Words • 31m
The Legacy of Sydney Schanberg
The Unz Review • July 13, 2016 • 3,500 Words • 23m


Several years ago I published a hardcover collection of my more substantial articles, entitled The Myth of American Meritocracy and Other Essays.

More recently, various people had suggested that I produce a similar collection of my American Pravda articles, so I’ve now done so in an eBook format. The full title is Our American Pravda and Other Essays in a Historical Counter-Narrative of the Last One Hundred Years.

I also decided to produce an eBook version of my previous Meritocracy collection, now updated to include my more recent articles that fell outside the American Pravda category.

Given the very low Amazon royalties for eBooks, I’ve decided to make both these books freely available for downloading in both the Mobi/Kindle and standard ePub formats. Just click on the appropriate links below:

Meritocracy Collection (Mobi, ePub) and American Pravda (Mobi, ePub)

Each of these books runs well over 300,000 words, and they together contain nearly 200 of my articles from The Unz Review and a wide variety of other publications.

These eBook versions are convenient for reading without use of the Internet, sometimes an important issue in these troubled times, and feel free to redistribute the copies to whomever might find the information of interest. If you consider the material valuable, then donate whatever you consider fair via PayPal or other systems.

I’m providing below a listing of the total contents of each volume, preceded by some of the very generous cover quotes that my Meritocracy collection had attracted back in 2016.

Meritocracy Collection Cover Quotes

With high intelligence, common sense, and advanced statistical skills, presented transparently and accessibly, Ron Unz has for decades been addressing key issues in a rapidly changing America, enlightening us on the implications and effects of bilingual programs in American schools, clarifying the issues around crime and immigration so often distorted in political and popular discussion, placing the question of an increased minimum wage effectively on the national agenda, and addressing most provocatively the issue of affirmative action and admission to selective colleges and universities, revealing some aspects of this ever disputed question that have never been noted or discussed publicly before. He is one of our most valuable discussants and analysts of public issues.—Nathan Glazer, Professor Emeritus of Education and Sociology, Harvard University, and author of Beyond the Melting Pot.

Few people on the planet are smarter than Ron Unz or have more intellectual curiosity. This fascinating and provocative collection of essays explores a remarkable range of topics, many of them high profile, some of them arcane. Unz’s analysis is always serious and invariably challenges prevailing wisdoms, which is to say there are a lot of controversial arguments in this book. No one is likely to agree with every one of his conclusions, but we would be better off if there were more people like Ron Unz among us. —John J. Mearsheimer, the R. Wendell Harrison Distinguished Service Professor of Political Science at the University of Chicago, and author of The Israel Lobby.

Ron Unz is a brilliant essayist. His interests run from ancient history and black holes to contemporary issues like racial quotas and the minimum wage. He moves swiftly to the heart of a subject with cogent analysis and limpid argument. This collection of essays sparkles with unexpected gems ranging from critiques of the mainstream press to appreciation of dissenters from common wisdom such as General Bill Odom and Alexander Cockburn. In every paragraph of these essays the reader enjoys a penetrating intelligence at work. —Nicholas Wade, former writer and editor for The New York Times, and author of Before the Dawn, The Faith Instinct, and A Troublesome Inheritance.

Over the past two decades as an original thinker and writer Ron Unz has tackled complex and significant subjects such as immigration, education, economics, race, and the press, pushing aside common assumptions. This book brings together in one volume these pieces from a variety of publications. Unlike other essayists on culture and politics, Unz shreds ideology and relies on statistical data to support his often groundbreaking ideas, such as his 2010 essay on “The Myth of Hispanic Crime.” And his 2014 efforts to put a $12 an hour minimum wage bill before California voters is an example of how the action of an individual can draw public attention to an issue he believes is necessary for the economic health of the Republic. Anyone reading this book will learn a great deal about America from an incisive writer and scholar who has peeled back layers of conventional wisdom to expose the truth on issues of prime importance today. —Sydney Schanberg, Pulitzer-Prize winning former reporter and editor for The New York Times, whose story inspired the 1984 film The Killing Fields.

Provocative and fearless, sometimes infuriating, and quite often, persuasive. And when American’s low-wage workers get their coming big raise, the apostate conservative Ron Unz will deserve a decent share of the credit. —Prof. James K. Galbraith, author of The End of Normal and Welcome to the Poisoned Chalice: The Destruction of Greece and the Future of Europe.

• • •

Meritocracy Collection

Cover Quotes
Preface to 2016 Edition


America’s Decline
Commentary (Letters) • August 1992 • 600 Words
How to Grab the Immigration Issue
The Wall Street Journal • May 24, 1994 • 1,100 Words
Immigration or the Welfare State
Policy Review • September 1994 • 4,100 Words


Although hardly suggested by our mainstream media, the officially-reported results demonstrated that our 2020 presidential election was extraordinarily close.

All the regular pre-election polls had shown the Democratic candidate with a comfortable lead, but just as had been the case four years earlier, the actual votes tabulated revealed an entirely contrary outcome. According to the official vote-count, the Biden/Harris ticket ended up millions of votes ahead, having racked up huge leads in overwhelmingly Democratic states such as my own California, and also won by a very comfortable 306 to 232 margin in Electoral Votes. But control of the White House depends upon the state-by-state tallies, and these told a very different story.

Incumbent Donald Trump lost Arizona, Georgia, and Wisconsin by such extremely narrow margins that a swing of less than 22,000 votes in those crucial states would have gotten him reelected. With a record 158 million votes cast, this amounted to a victory margin of around 0.01%. So if just one American voter in 7,000 had changed his mind, Trump might have received another four years in office. One American voter in 7,000.

Such an exceptionally narrow victory is extremely unusual in modern American history. For decades, the very tight Kennedy-Nixon race of 1960 had been a byword for close races, but Biden’s margin of victory was much smaller. More recently, George W. Bush won a narrow reelection over Sen. John F. Kerry in 2004, but Kerry would have required a voter swing nearly five times greater than Trump’s in order to claim victory. Indeed, with the sole exception of the notorious “dangling chads” Florida decision of the 2000 Bush-Gore election, no American presidential candidate in over 100 years had lost by so narrow a voter margin as Donald J. Trump.

If our incompetent or dishonest media had correctly reported these simple facts, perhaps Democratic partisans would have been somewhat more understanding of the outrage expressed by so many of their Republican counterparts, who believed they had been cheated of their election victory. Admittedly, Trump backers seem equally unaware of the historically slender margin of their candidate’s defeat.

The emotions on both sides of the Trump reelection campaign were among the strongest in modern American history, and the outcome was determined by the tiniest sliver of voters in a few states. So under these circumstances, last week’s controversial events in DC were perhaps not so entirely unexpected. Indeed, during the weeks before the election, I’d half-predicted such a scenario, speculating about possible claims of a stolen election and the resulting civil unrest. For example, the following was my response to a question from a longtime commenter:

Many Trump supporters are alleging that there could be massive voting fraud in the 2020 election. Some believe that if Trump is ahead on election night, Democratic machines will manufacture ballots to give a victory to Biden. Do you think this is possible or do you see this as improbable?

Well, I suppose it’s possible…

Frankly, both sides are so totally agitated and extreme, the Trumpists would be saying and believing it, even if it were entirely false and impossible. It’s hard to figure out what’s happening when everyone involved is so dishonest and corrupt. Trump has always seemed like an ignorant buffoon to me, but I think the Democrats and liberals have almost gone insane in their opposition to him.

As I’ve been telling people for weeks, the whole political situation certainly seems very bizarre and I’ve seen some pretty plausible arguments that we might end up with a “disputed” election if the numbers are fairly close in key states. Apparently, the Republicans are overwhelmingly going to be voting in person, while the Democrats will be voting by mail, meaning their ballots will be much slower to come in and be counted.

So Trump could be ahead by wide margins on Election Night and declare victory to the cheers of his partisans. And then as the mail ballots come in, the numbers turn against him, but he and his die-hard supporters cry “Fraud!” and refuse to recognize the result. Hard to say what would happen, but I’m glad I live in California which is generally quiet and peaceful these days.

Obviously, Bush/Gore was “disputed” in 2000, but only party loyalists much cared at the time, while today the country is filled with Trumpists and Trump-haters, both very suspicious and angry.


Although I think my speculative scenario turned out to be reasonably correct, the actual post-election developments were far greater in magnitude than I had expected, and may have dire consequences for maintaining American civil liberties.

I haven’t investigated the matter, but there does seem to be considerable circumstantial evidence of widespread ballot fraud by Democratic Party forces, hardly surprising given the apocalyptic manner in which so many of their leaders had characterized the threat of a Trump reelection. After all, if they sincerely believed that a Trump victory would be catastrophic for America why would they not use every possible means, fair and foul alike, to save our country from that dire fate?

In particular, several of the major swing-states contain large cities—Detroit, Milwaukee, Philadelphia, and Atlanta—that are both totally controlled by the Democratic Party and also notoriously corrupt, and various eye-witnesses have suggested that the huge anti-Trump margins they provided may have been heavily “padded” to ensure the candidate’s defeat.

Even leaving aside some of these plausible claims, the case for a stolen election seems almost airtight. I don’t know or care anything about Dominion voting machines, whether they are controlled by Venezuelan Marxists, Chinese Communists, or Martians. But the most blatant election-theft was accomplished in absolutely plain sight.

Not long before the election, the hard drive of an abandoned laptop owned by Joe Biden’s son Hunter revealed a gigantic international corruption scheme, quite possibility involving the candidate himself. But the facts of this enormous political scandal were entirely ignored and boycotted by virtually every mainstream media outlet. And once they story was finally published in the pages of the New York Post, America’s oldest newspaper, all links to the Post article and its website were suddenly banned by Twitter, Facebook, and other social media outlets to ensure that the voters remained ignorant until after they had cast their ballots.

Renowned international journalist Glenn Greenwald was hardly a Trump partisan, but he became outraged that the editors of the Intercept, the $100 million publication he himself had co-founded, refused to allow him to cover that massive media scandal, and he angrily resigned in protest. In effect, America’s media and tech giants formed a united front to steal the election and somehow drag the crippled Biden/Harris ticket across the finish line.


A couple of weeks ago Rurik, one of our most frequent longtime commenters, suggested that we add a “Breaking News” section, providing newslinks to external articles along the general lines of the influential Drudge Report:

I’d like to take this opportunity to make a suggestion.

I used to visit Drudge from time to time, just to get the latest news. If there was a plane crash or coup somewhere in the world, Drudge would usually be one of the first, if not first to have a link, if not a headline.

But Drudge has become ‘woke’ of late, and so he’s as useless as the MSM.

Which leaves a dearth of news sites linking to news stories. Especially with an objective interest in what is news per se, rather than their eternally agenda-driven slant, as you well know.

So the suggestion I have, is for The Unz Review to start a ‘Breaking News’ section.

If Russia shoots down a Turkish jet, instead of going to CNN or the NYT to read how ‘Russia’s provocations against NATO and International Law have become untenable and a dangerous threat to world peace and stability’.

We can get a more measured and nuanced look at breaking news, with links to the stories from a vast and wide-array of international news organizations.

From there perhaps your website could allow for commenting on the breaking news, or not.

But since there is such a dearth of objective news sites, or those linking to them, I just wonder if such an addition to the (amazing and inimitable) Unz Review wouldn’t be resoundingly popular. Perhaps even one day competing with and eventually replacing Drudge as the go-to site for breaking news on the Internet.

Thank you for your consideration,

the humble commenter ~ Rurik

He soon added that our own commenters would be ideally suited to providing such a crowdsourced presentation of important stories ignored by the MSM:

contemplating this, I wondered- ok, that would require someone to peruse the international and domestic news for interesting and consequential ‘breaking news’.

And who better to do that, than the notoriously news-savvy Unz Review commenter-commentariat?

Such a space would certainly need to be moderated for chaff, (considering the trolls that inhabit your site), and commenting would slow it down, but perhaps at the start, give it a boost.

Already your willing staff participate ‘gratis’, posting breaking news on existing threads, occasionally admitting it to be off topic, but on a “Breaking News’ addition to your site, it would be appropriate for all topics to be covered, so long as they were of interest.

I even wonder if a kind of Drudge-style format wouldn’t work well. With several news stories displayed on the page, with the most recent or most news-worthy at the top.

Just ‘thinking out loud here…’

I’m sure you’re familiar with WRH.

And that site is enormously popular simply by posting breaking news, with some slight commentary from the site owner.

But that site is bogged down with enough ads to alienate many people, so there again, another opportunity to fill a vacuum.

It amazes me that there is such a dearth of objective news sites on the Internet. Especially as Drudge was so popular, (and lucrative and influential). But now he’s become woke, and it seems like there’s simply hardly anywhere to go for interesting and consequential news that isn’t part of the American Pravda cabal.

This seemed like a very good idea to consider, especially since I’d recently noticed the rise of other newslink-aggregation websites. Therefore, I have now gone ahead and built it, generally following the simple design of the Revolver website.

Since this is an alternative media website, with a very energetic and ideologically-diverse commentariat of thousands of regular readers, I’d hope that they would soon become source of the overwhelming majority of our newslinks. All frequent commenters—those currently provided access to the Opinion Response buttons—are now also allowed to suggest possible Newslinks, though I’m currently applying a restriction of 3 per 24 hours. To suggest a possible Newslink just click the Suggestion box at the top of the Newslink page and add it in the following very simple format:

  • (Required) URL of Newslink on First Line
  • (Required) Suggested Newslink Heading on Second Line
  • (Optional) Description of Newslink on Later Lines

If your Newslink is approved, it will be added to the top of the page. Depending upon how things go, I may need to adjust some of there parameters over time.

Given the increasingly harsh Social Media crackdown on the distribution of unorthodox opinions, I think these sorts of aggregation pages may become more important in the future.

The Newslink section is now displayed in the top menu and also the Sidebar. I’d look forward to hearing your perspectives and suggestions.

• Category: Ideology • Tags: American Media 

Several years ago during the height of the Edward Snowden/NSA spying scandal, Glenn Greenwald was sometimes described as the world’s most famous journalist. I think that characterization was probably correct, at least if we exclude Julian Assange from consideration.

The American government has emphatically denied that Assange was ever a journalist, now working to prosecute him for espionage and sentence him to life in a maximum security prison. Meanwhile, it did grudgingly concede that protective status to Greenwald. So the fates of the two most famous figures who revealed American crimes to the world sharply diverged, and the year after Assange was forced to desperately seek asylum in the Ecuadorian embassy in London and begin his long period of miserable confinement to a single room, Greenwald made worldwide headlines as founding editor of a lavishly-funded new journalistic enterprise that captured the imagination of the world.

That venture was First Look Media, established by Tech billionaire Pierre Omidyar, who pledged $250 million in financial support. Its first and only visible project has been The Intercept, an outlet intended to provide a home for fearless investigative journalism, free from the pressures and dishonest compromises so often found in traditional media outlets. Greenwald’s two fellow founding editors were Laura Poitras, an award-winning documentarian who had collaborated on the Snowden project, and Jeremy Scahill, whose best-selling books had lacerated the American crimes committed during our disastrous Iraq War, focusing especially upon the huge growth of international mercenary outfits, now euphemistically styled as “military contractors.”

Numerous other veteran journalists also soon eagerly came on board at a time when so many of American’s traditional media outlets were losing their advertising revenue to the Internet, resulting in crippling waves of layoffs and cut-backs. Backed by such enormous and apparently disinterested financial support, The Intercept seemed poised for an extremely bright future.

Unfortunately, the reality has been quite different. Creating a successful media outlet is a far more difficult and complex undertaking than merely hiring experienced journalists and providing them with heavy funding. Late last week Greenwald announced his resignation from The Intercept, explaining that the top editorial staff had repeatedly blocked him from publishing his lengthy article analyzing the huge corruption-scandal now swirling around Democratic Presidential candidate Joe Biden.

Greenwald was thus forced to abandon the high-profile publication that he himself had co-founded in order to regain his journalistic freedom, and that irony was hardly lost upon many other independent Internet voices, including his former colleague Matt Taibbi, Yves Smith of the Naked Capitalism blog, and the Moon of Alabama blogger.

Greenwald himself explained the situation in his scathing letter of resignation. According to him, in recent years The Intercept had increasingly abandoned its original stated mission and instead become more and more indistinguishable from all the other left-leaning publications on the Internet, adopting a fiercely partisan party-line and demonstrating Procrustean tendencies to shape its journalistic output in support of its ideological goals and favored candidates. The large crew of New York editors eventually brought on board tended to measure their success by the accolades they attracted from mainstream outlets while they lived in fear of Twitter denunciations. As a result, they soon came to closely resemble the establishmentarian media that their publication had originally been created to challenge. They and most of their mainstream media peers regarded the defeat of Donald Trump as an overriding goal and therefore seem to have somehow persuaded themselves that any temporary sacrifice of honest journalistic standards was a price well worth paying.

Julian Assange may soon be spending the rest of his life in a small prison cell, and compared to that outcome Greenwald’s humiliating treatment is a mere bagatelle, but both figures fell from ideological grace for similar reasons. As an anti-secrecy campaigner, Assange had become the toast of our liberal elite by exposing the crimes of the Bush era American military, but when he evenhandedly released DNC emails deeply embarrassing to Hillary Clinton and the Democrats, he was reviled as a traitor and a Russian stooge. Although Greenwald remains left-liberal in his personal views, his staunch refusal to avert his eyes from the flagrant political and media corruption on his side of the aisle has provoked deep resentments among his one-time ideological admirers.

Many details of Greenwald’s resignation can be found in the following articles, and he also explained the circumstances in an interview on Tucker Carlson Tonight:


Although I’d mostly lost track of both Greenwald and The Intercept over the last few years, the story of his sudden resignation didn’t particularly surprise me.

Donald Trump had always struck me as an ignorant buffoon and most of his proposed policies were ridiculous, but I felt that his establishmentarian political critics had almost been driven insane by their loathing for him. Since I regarded both Trump and Biden as such exceptionally awful candidates, I’d paid relatively little attention to the many months of heated presidential campaigning. However, the recent charges of massive financial corruption against the Biden family seemed pretty credible to me, and the unified media efforts to drag the Democratic ticket across the finish line by hiding the scandal from the American voters was utterly outrageous.

The New York Post is America’s oldest newspaper and after it broke the Biden corruption story a couple of weeks ago, both Facebook and Twitter took the unprecedented step of banning all links to the published account of that potentially massive political scandal. Compared to such absurd censorship, the unwillingness of The Intercept‘s Trump-hating editors to publish Greenwald’s article was shameful but hardly surprising. However once I looked into the background, other surprises did appear.

An Intellectual History of the Last One Hundred Years

Audio Segments: Part 1, Part 2, Part 3, Part 4, Part 5, Part 6, Part 7, Part 8

One morning a couple of years ago I received an urgent email from a moderately prominent libertarian figure strongly focused on antiwar issues. He warned me that our publication had been branded a “White Supremacist website” by the Washington Post, and urged me to immediately respond, perhaps by demanding a formal retraction or even taking legal action lest we be destroyed by that totally unfair accusation.

When I looked into the matter, my own perspective was rather different. Apparently Max Boot, one of the more agitated Jewish Neocons, had written a column fiercely denouncing some recent criticism of pro-Israel policies that Philip Giraldi had published in our webzine, and the “White Supremacist” slur was merely his crude means of demonizing the author’s views for those of his readers who might be less than wholeheartedly enthusiastic about Benjamin Netanyahu and his policies.

After pointing this out to my correspondent, I also noted that a good 10% or more of our writers were probably “White Nationalists,” and perhaps a few of them might even arguably be labeled “White Supremacists.” So although Boot’s description of our website was certainly wrong, it was probably less wrong than the vast majority of his other writing, which was typically focused on American military policy and the Middle East.

Our webzine is quite unusual in its willingness to feature a smattering of writers who provide a White Nationalist perspective. Such individuals are almost totally excluded from other online publications, except for those marginalized websites devoted to their ideas, which often tend to focus on such topics and related issues to the near exclusion of anything else. However, I believe that maintaining this sort of ideological quarantine or “ghettoization” greatly diminishes the ability to understand many important aspects of our world.


Substituting ideological slurs and demonization for rational evaluation and rebuttal has long become a commonplace in heated American policy debates, recently growing more severe in the wake of the Black Lives Matter movement and the associated “cancel-culture” driven by inflamed social media. Locating a couple of controversial sentences and then using these to dismiss an enormous body of detailed analysis may sometimes serve as an effective debating technique among timorous journalists, but its intellectual legitimacy seems rather doubtful. And this is especially true with regard to the charged subject of white racialism, which seems to provoke a near-religious antipathy among so many of the politically correct elites of our society, despite their avowedly secular protestations.

Even the choice of preferred accusatory phrases suggests a certain amount of bad faith. My impression is that a couple of years ago members of the pro-white ideological camp were usually denounced as “White Nationalists” but more recently that term has been superseded by “White Supremacists.” I suspect that part of the reason for this verbal shift was the obvious hypocrisy of their disparate treatment. As I noted a few years ago:

A strident Black Nationalist such as Malcolm X was widely condemned during his own lifetime as an extremist advocate of violence, yet he has now been honored with a U.S. postage stamp, while today a lifelong racial activist such as Al Sharpton has his own MSNBC cable television show and received 80-odd invitations to the White House over the last few years. Such treatment seems very different from what their white-activist counterparts, either past or present, might expect to receive.

Following the unexpected victory of Donald Trump and the resulting sudden media prominence of the racialist Alt-Right, a national journalist who had become a leading chronicler of that movement visited me for lunch in Palo Alto, and we spent a couple of hours discussing what I considered some of the tremendous ironies of America’s existing ideological landscape. Among other things, I pointed out that the overwhelming majority of the world’s leading academics and intellectuals from one hundred years ago—whether left, right, or center—held many views that would surely have gotten them branded as “White Nationalists” in today’s severely constricted ideological climate.

But whereas today’s WNs are an extremely vilified and marginalized group, with their ranks therefore necessarily skewed towards eccentrics and misfits, the situation was entirely different back then. Their counterparts of the past included many of the foremost academic scholars and public intellectuals of that era, who openly discussed their views in leading opinion journals rather than by pseudonymous postings in dark corners of the Internet. Partly for this reason, such individuals tended to approach the same issues with far greater sophistication.

Until the early 2000s, nearly all these names would have been almost unknown to me, either rating a sentence or two in my introductory history textbooks, or else being entirely omitted. But I spent most of that decade building a content-archiving system that provided convenient access to over a million articles from more than 200 of our leading periodicals since the mid-nineteenth century, and was stunned by the severe distortions and enormous lacunae in my knowledge which this revealed. As I wrote a couple of years ago on related matters:

I sometimes imagined myself a little like an earnest young Soviet researcher of the 1970s who began digging into the musty files of long-forgotten Kremlin archives and made some stunning discoveries. Trotsky was apparently not the notorious Nazi spy and traitor portrayed in all the textbooks, but instead had been the right-hand man of the sainted Lenin himself during the glorious days of the great Bolshevik Revolution, and for some years afterward had remained in the topmost ranks of the Party elite. And who were these other figures—Zinoviev, Kamenev, Bukharin, Rykov—who also spent those early years at the very top of the Communist hierarchy? In history courses, they had barely rated a few mentions, as minor Capitalist agents who were quickly unmasked and paid for their treachery with their lives. How could the great Lenin, father of the Revolution, have been such an idiot to have surrounded himself almost exclusively with traitors and spies?

As I gradually discovered, large portions of America’s entire intellectual past had been hidden or altered beyond recognition, and racial beliefs constituted a major portion of this transformation.

Probably Not

As everyone knows, over the last couple of decades California has become a one-party Democratic state. Democrats hold a better than three-fourths hyper-majority in the State Assembly and their control is nearly as overwhelming in the State Senate. California has our nation’s largest Congressional delegation, but of its 53 members only seven are Republican.

Not only is every statewide officeholder a Democrat, but no Republican has won such a race in almost 15 years, with many of the recent contests not even featuring a Republican on the November ballot. The once-proud Republican Party of Reagan and Nixon has been reduced to almost total irrelevance.

This same pattern has held in national elections, with Donald Trump losing the 2016 California vote by a remarkable 30 points and the most recent polling data suggesting a similar outcome this November.

Except for tiny Hawaii, California is now America’s most heavily non-white state, with our white European population reduced to little more than 30% of the total. But such demographic factors explain only part of those lop-sided 2016 election results since white Californians supported Trump at a rate 20-25 points lower than whites in the rest of the country. If America’s entire white national electorate had voted like its Golden State counterpart, Trump would have lost all fifty states, mostly by huge landslides, and suffered by far the greatest electoral disaster in American history. All the Trump-hating pundits would have spent Election Night laughing and saying “I told you so!”

Although liberal domination of California state politics is not quite as absolute as Democratic control, the state is certainly very liberal, with our elected officials supporting all sorts of causes and policies that would be anathema in much of the rest of the country.

Given these political realities and expecting a heavy November turnout, state Democratic leaders believed they had the perfect opportunity this year to undo one of the last hated legacies of Republican Gov. Pete Wilson, the Prop. 209 ban on governmental Affirmative Action, passed into law by a relatively narrow 55% to 45% margin in 1996. Democrats felt quite confident that a full generation of demographic and ideological shifts had totally transformed the electorate, allowing them to win a resounding victory for “racial diversity” at the ballot box.

The plan to restore Affirmative Action became an unstoppable political juggernaut, with the Assembly voting 60-14 and the Senate 30-10 to place Prop. 16 on the November ballot, repealing Prop. 209. The project enjoyed the strong support of popular Gov. Gavin Newsom and nearly all other prominent political leaders, as well as the unanimous backing of the UC Board of Regents and the heads of all three public higher education systems. Leading sports teams such as the San Francisco Giants and the Golden State Warriors added their endorsements.

California’s Attorney-General is a liberal Democrat, and his office provided what seemed like a slam-dunk official title description for the ballot measure: “Allows Diversity as a Factor in Public Employment, Education, and Contracting Decisions.” In this day and age, what California voter could possibly oppose “Diversity”?


So much for theory. PPIC, California’s leading public policy thinktank, just released the first major poll on the November vote, and our morning newspapers revealed that the attempt to restore Affirmative Action will probably lose, perhaps even by a huge landslide.

The traditional rule in California politics is that support for a ballot measure steadily declines as Election Day approaches, with undecideds overwhelmingly breaking No. Therefore, at this stage a successful measure should probably have a lead of at least 10 points. For example, experts believe that Prop. 15—a split-roll tax initiative—appears to be in trouble given its weak 51% support.

Meanwhile, only 31% of voters are currently backing Prop. 16, aimed at restoring Affirmative Action. Anything might still happen, but those are dismal numbers just a couple of weeks before ballots are mailed out.

The demographic distribution of support also tells an interesting story. Whites are probably one-third or less of California residents, but for reasons of age and naturalization, they still constitute a slight majority of likely voters, and only 26% of whites support Prop. 16. It appears that most white California Democrats refuse to support Affirmative Action.

Latinos are California’s largest group, currently representing 40% of the total population and perhaps eventually rising to an outright majority according to some projections. Only 41% of Latinos seem to support Affirmative Action.

Asians have been the group most strongly opposed to the restoration of Affirmative Action, fearing that racial discrimination would exclude their children from Berkeley, UCLA, and other top UC campuses, and a few years ago their vocal opposition had blocked a previous attempt to repeal Prop. 209. PPIC polls normally break out their Asian numbers, but in this instance Asians and blacks were lumped together, registering a combined 40% support for Prop. 16. Perhaps PPIC feared that revealing Asians (and blacks) as extreme outliers on this divisive issue would produce bitter feelings. Since Asian respondents outnumbered blacks by more than 2-to-1 and probably showed very little support for Prop. 16, it seems likely that black support for Affirmative Action was overwhelming, probably in the 60-70% range.

The low level of Hispanic support for Affirmative Action may surprise many rightwingers, but it makes perfect sense. The overwhelming majority of Hispanics work in the private sector, often in small businesses where most or all of the other employees are also Hispanic. If you and most of your coworkers are Hispanic, Affirmative Action is simply meaningless.

Prop. 209 had required color-blind university admissions since 1996, but Hispanic students have nonetheless still done rather well over the last couple of decades, actually overtaking whites in University of California admissions a few years ago, though still heavily outnumbered by Asians at Berkeley and UCLA. Hispanic families seem quite satisfied with this situation, and have provided no grassroots support for restoring Affirmative Action in university admissions.

With the exception of a tiny sliver of “professional Hispanics” who have made an entire career out of their ethnicity, Affirmative Action has never historically been much of a Hispanic issue. Indeed, I once noted the strong support Pete Wilson had received in his first 1990 campaign for governor.


For many years I had predicted to my friends that the increasingly bizarre and incompetent behavior of America’s ruling elites might soon result in a major “negative discontinuity” for our unfortunate country, the sort of massive event that future authors would use to divide one section of a thick history textbook from the next.

I couldn’t quite say what form that “discontinuity” might take, but I suggested possibilities along the lines of another Great Depression or some huge social upheaval or perhaps even a world war. The notion of an uncontrolled disease epidemic never crossed my mind, but our Covid-19 outbreak—together with the totally incompetent governmental response and the resulting social and economic disaster—seems to fit the bill quite nicely, even producing a triple-header of national calamities.

Or perhaps a quadruple-header. Although a world war still seems distant, the recent demonization of China, a bipartisan project of Democrats and Republicans alike, has already been labeled a new Cold War by leading journalistic observers, and cold wars can easily turn hot. Just a couple of weeks ago, American provocations in the vicinity of Chinese military exercises led the Chinese to respond by test-firing several of their vaunted “carrier-killer” missiles, weapons widely believed capable of immediately sending any of our primary power-projection platforms to the bottom of the ocean.

For three generations, the US has carefully avoided any military conflict with a near-peer, but that traditional forbearance may now have been replaced by extreme recklessness. Many of our cities have been set aflame in urban rioting, we have seen a huge spike in violent crime, and massive unemployment continues. So if the incumbent’s poll numbers look bleak as Election Day nears, a political October Surprise of major sabre-rattling and brinksmanship seems quite possible, and a sudden misstep might then put us at war in the South China Sea.

Chinese anti-carrier ballistic missiles have been developed to prevent an American blockade of their vital offshore waters, and many analysts doubt we have any effective defense. The loss of a carrier would mean thousands of American deaths and the possible collapse of our perceived control of the world’s sea lanes, perhaps ending the dollar’s long reign as the world’s reserve currency and thereby massively impoverishing our citizenry. A frantic American government might react by escalating to nuclear weapons, with horrific and unforeseeable consequences.

Greatly increasing this risk of war has been the very dangerous public game played for months by the Trump Administration and its political allies. The response of America’s national government to the Covid-19 outbreak was among the worst and most incompetent in the world, with only India and Brazil challenging our place at the bottom of the charts, and it is difficult to imagine a worse political nightmare for an incumbent during a presidential election year. The widespread national lockdowns produced an unprecedented spike in business failures and unemployment, which have only temporarily been mitigated by raising our national debt to levels last seen at the close of the Second World War.

Under such difficult circumstances, even the most sober and cautious of political leaders would naturally seek some desperate means of diverting blame elsewhere, and no one has ever accused our current president of such sobriety. So it was hardly surprising that for weeks during the peak of the New York outbreak and the early national lockdowns, Trump and his top officials explicitly suggested that the deadly virus had come from a Wuhan lab, thus accusing the Chinese government of being responsible for our deaths and economic disaster, with such charges being widely echoed in the media.

Although that public war of words has now subsided, the impact still remains. According to a poll taken at the end of April, a remarkable 45% of Americans believed that the deadly virus had “probably” or “definitely” originated in such a laboratory, with 74% of Republicans having that belief. Consider that nearly 200,000 Americans have already died and our business economy has suffered trillions of dollars in losses. Most great wars have been launched on merely a sliver of such justification.

This is an exceptionally dangerous situation, and we would naturally expect that our leading national publications would devote enormous resources to carefully investigating such dramatic charges and perhaps refuting them, especially given that their editorial staffs so greatly loathe the current occupant of the White House.

It sometimes seems like every edition of my morning New York Times includes one or more headlines screaming the phrase “Trump lied”, generally with reference to some casually insulting Tweet about a leading Democrat. But the Great Satan’s public accusation that the Chinese government has been directly responsible for the deaths of nearly 200,000 Americans seems to have received far less scrutiny. Both the Wall Street Journal and the Times have published investigative reports on some of these issues, but these have been extremely deferential in their coverage, and anyway lacked the depth and detail that is so clearly warranted.

A natural venue for serious investigative journalism would be the prestigious national magazines that have traditionally provided long-form reporting, with The Atlantic and The New York Times Sunday Magazine being the most obvious possibilities. But these publications have increasingly shifted their focus to “wokeness” and seem to believe that the investigative research necessary to help deflect a world war with China has far less importance than a soulful piece on the emotional plight of transgendered black rappers.

Fortunately, the ease of Internet publishing has allowed the creation of a multitude of new webzine outlets, able to fill the gaps created by the increased frivolity and irrelevance of their established predecessors. The emerging landscape of alternative media is a broad one, with individual publications possessing different strengths and weaknesses. For example, our own webzine has very high traffic but is among the most controversial and therefore one of the least likely to be mentioned in mainstream outlets.

Situated at the opposite end of this spectrum is Quillette. Launched in 2015 by former mainstream journalist Claire Lehmann, this webzine is sufficiently respectable that few journalists or academics would fear any association. Establishing such respectability is merely a means toward an end, and Quillette has now justified that effort many times over by publishing a remarkable four-part series analyzing the wider Covid-19 accusations against China. The author, Philippe Lemoine is a Cornell graduate student originally from France and his exhaustive 31,000 word opus might once have appeared as the cover-story of one of our leading national publications prior to their lapse into decadence. I have seen nothing else so comprehensive on that subject, and I would strongly recommend that the articles be read by everyone interested in this important topic.

About Ron Unz

A theoretical physicist by training, Mr. Unz serves as founder and chairman of, a content-archiving website providing free access to many hundreds of thousands of articles from prominent periodicals of the last hundred and fifty years. From 2007 to 2013, he also served as publisher of The American Conservative, a small opinion magazine, and had previously served as chairman of Wall Street Analytics, Inc., a financial services software company which he founded in New York City in 1987. He holds undergraduate and graduate degrees from Harvard University, Cambridge University, and Stanford University, and is a past first-place winner in the Intel/Westinghouse Science Talent Search. He was born in Los Angeles in 1961.

He has long been deeply interested in public policy issues, and his writings on issues of immigration, race, ethnicity, and social policy have appeared in The New York Times, The Wall Street Journal, Commentary, The Nation, and numerous other publications.

In 1994, he launched a surprise Republican primary challenge to incumbent Gov. Pete Wilson of California, running on a conservative, pro-immigrant platform against the prevailing political sentiment, and received 34% of the vote. Later that year, he campaigned as a leading opponent of Prop. 187, the anti-immigration initiative, and was a top featured speaker at a 70,000 person pro-immigrant march in Los Angeles, the largest political rally in California history to that date.

In 1997, Mr. Unz began his “English for the Children” initiative campaign to dismantle bilingual education in California. He drafted Prop. 227 and led the campaign to qualify and pass the measure, culminating in a landslide 61% victory in June 1998, effectively eliminating over one-third of America’s bilingual programs. Within less than three years of the new English immersion curriculum, the mean percentile test scores of over a million immigrant students in California rose by an average of 70%. He later organized and led similar initiative campaigns in other states, winning with 63% in the 2000 Arizona vote and a remarkable 68% in the 2002 Massachusetts vote without spending a single dollar on advertising.

After spending most of the 2000s focused on software projects, he has recently become much more active in his public policy writings, most of which had appeared in his own magazine.

Personal Classics
The unspoken statistical reality of urban crime over the last quarter century.
The Shaping Event of Our Modern World
Analyzing the History of a Controversial Movement