Five Minutes Five Issues: Refugee Creation, WaPo Deception, Gun Form, Phone Control, Fidel Castro

A new episode of Five Minutes Five Issues posted on Saturday. You can listen to it, and read a transcript, below. You can also find previous episodes of the show at StitcheriTunesYouTube, and SoundCloud.

Listen to the new episode here:

Read a transcript of the new episode, including links to further information regarding the topics discussed, here:

The Ron Paul Institute for Peace and Prosperity welcomes you to Five Minutes Five Issues.

Starting in five four three two one.

Hello, I am Adam Dick, a Ron Paul Institute senior fellow.

Let’s start.

Issue one.

On Thursday, many Americans celebrated Thanksgiving at their homes or the homes of friends or family members. Indeed, having a home is one thing for which many people are thankful.

The United Nations Refugee Agency (UNHCR) estimated in its June Global Trends report that 65.3 million people across the world are forcibly displaced from their homes. About 41 million people are internally displaced in their countries, 21 million are refugees, and three million are asylum-seekers. More than half the refugees, the UN Refugee Agency relates, are from Syria, Afghanistan, and Somalia. All three countries share in common being subjected to US-supported regime change efforts.

Issue two.

I wrote Friday at the Ron Paul Institute (RPI) about a Thursday Washington Post article by Craig Timberg that discusses an anonymous group. The group, Timberg wrote, claims to have identified “more than 200 websites as routine peddlers of Russian propaganda during the election season.” RPI’s website, the Drudge Report, and various non-mainstream-media websites with political views that span the gamut are on the list.

Here is something I did not mention in my article. The Post article, though it includes many links, does not link to the list of websites or the anonymous group that produced the list. That group’s website is Funny thing, the Post article complained about “propaganda” but used a clever technique to discourage people from seeing the flimsy nature of the allegations of a major source on which the Post article relied.

Issue three.

The Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms and Explosives (ATF) has released a revised version of its ATF Form 4473. Individuals who attempt to purchase guns from US licensed gun dealers are required to complete the form.

The previous version of the form requires answering this question: “Are you an unlawful user of, or addicted to, marijuana or any depressant, stimulant, narcotic drug, or any other controlled substance?” The new version, required to be used by January 16, supplements this question with a boldface sentence stating, “Warning: The use or possession of marijuana remains unlawful under Federal law regardless of whether it has been legalized or decriminalized for medicinal or recreational purposes in the state where you reside.”

Answer “yes” to the question and no gun for you.

Maybe a coalition of Congress members will work together to make it clear in United States law and on the form that marijuana use in compliance with state law is not a disqualifier. Thinking more broadly, how about removing drug-related gun control from the law and removing the drug question entirely from the form?

Issue four.

The National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA) announced this week proposed “voluntary guidelines” for phones and other electronic devices. The guidelines recommend that a phone detect when a person with the phone is driving and, then, disable many of the phone’s features. The NHTSA calls this automated shut-down “Driver Mode” and touts its benefit in preventing “distracted driving.”

Issue five.

Fidel Castro died Friday. Castro was a leader in the 1950s ousting of the government of Cuba. In the ensuing decades, Castro was a Cuban government leader.

Yes, review Castro and his government’s rights abuses. Still, I find a comment offered by journalist Glenn Greenwald upon Castro’s death provides important perspective. Greenwald wrote, “The amount of attention and concern a foreign leader’s abuses receive in US discourse is solely determined by how much they ‘defy’ the US.”


That’s a wrap.

Transcripts of Five Minutes Five Issues episodes, including links to related information, are at the Ron Paul Institute blog.

Five four three two one.

Reprinted with permission from the Ron Paul Institute for Peace and Prosperity.

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