Our successor to This Week in the Guardian, This Week in the New Normal is our weekly chart of the progress of autocracy, authoritarianism and economic restructuring around the world.
1.San Fran’s Killer Robots
According to a report from The Verge, the San Francisco Police Deparment has submitted a proposal that would permit robots to use “deadly force” on suspects:
The San Francisco Police Department is proposing a new policy that would give robots the license to kill […] The draft policy, which outlines how the SFPD can use military-style weapons, states robots can be “used as a deadly force option when risk of loss of life to members of the public or officers is imminent and outweighs any other force option.”
To be clear, these are not “robots” in the science fiction sense of the word. We’re not talking RoboCop or the T-800, they are essentially remote-controlled vehicles, mounted with various anti-personnel devices to disperse crowds or bomb disposal equipment.
That said, it flies in the face of official justification of deadly force in the first place, which is that the suspect presents a direct threat to the police officer. The proposal argues that robots would be empowered to protect the public whilst not putting officers lives in danger.
Nevethtless, it doesn’t sit right that people could be killed by remotely controlled machines.
In the military sphere, we have already seen how drones have distanced killers from the their victims, and made the process of dropping firey death an entirely one sided and clinical affair.
It’s not hard to see increasingly militarised police going the same way.
2. holiday heart syndrome
Another week, another non-vaccine reason your heart might explode. This time it’s “holiday heart syndrome”.
Apparently cold weather, stress, alcohol consumption and dehydration can all coalesce into heart problems.
So if you or a loved one keel over soon, that’s why. It was not the vaccines, it was holiday heart syndrome.
That or the stress of high energy bills. Or you made your bed too vigorously. Or those evil anti-vaxxers stressed you into it.
Pick one. Pick several if you want. Just don’t use “the V word”.
At least HHS – unlike “post-pandemic stress disorder” – has the benefit of having supposedly existed since before the vaccine roll-out (the term was apparently coined in 1978).
Still, though, it is pretty weird how much they talk about heart attacks these days.
3. Canadian Paralympian offered euthanasia over late stairlift
Testifying in front of the Canadian parliament’s Veteran Affairs Committee, Christine Gauthier claimed:
I have a letter saying that if you’re so desperate, madam, we can offer you MAID, medical assistance in dying,”
According to CBC, Gauthier has offered to show the letter to the media and parliament. You can watch the report below:
BONUS: Rewritten history of the week
CDC director Rochelle Walenksy made news this week when she marked the 50th anniversary of the Tuskegee Experiment by honoring the “sacrifice” of the men involved:
This year marks the 50th anniversary of the end of the Tuskegee syphilis study. Tomorrow, I will be joined by colleagues & #PublicHealth leaders as we honor the 623 African American men, their suffering & sacrifice, and our commitment to ethical research and practice. https://t.co/cbR8Shy0Db
— Rochelle Walensky, MD, MPH (@CDCDirector) November 29, 2022
For those who don’t know, the Tuskegee Experiment involved the deliberate withholding of treatment from black men infected with syphilis, without their knowledge, in order to study the progression of the disease.
It was not “sacrifice”, it was pure evil.
All told a pretty hectic week for the new normal crowd, and we didn’t even mention how Graham Hancock’s “ancient apocalypse” theory is racist and should be banned or the African Union calling for a “new approach” to ending hunger…sponsored by Bill Gates.
There’s a lot of change in the air, a lot of agendas in the works, if you see a headline, article, post or interview you think is a sign of the times, post it in the comments, email us or share it on social media and we will add it to the next edition.
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