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. CBDCs move another step closer
Two days ago it was reported that the Bank of International Settlements and the Bank of England had completed tests on various aspects of Central Bank Digital Currencies (CBDCs):
A joint experiment by central banks has tested ways to connect monetary authorities and the private sector to facilitate retail digital currency payments […] The experiment saw the London Innovation hub of the Bank for International Settlements – which groups the world’s central banks – and the Bank of England develop 33 application programming interface (API) functionalities to test more than 30 central bank digital currency (CBDC) use cases, including offline payments.
The experiment – known as “Project Rosalind” – has been running for over a year, and its reportedly successful conclusion means we are “one step closer” to full implementation, according to Bloomberg.
In other CBDC news, a “leaked” draft EU law would ban interest and programmability for any digital Euro, again from CoinDesk.
Does that really mean anything? We’ll have to wait and see, but I doubt it. When the full text is released I’m sure they’ll be all kinds of delightful workarounds in there.
2. Lab leak: The theory that won’t die
Covid’s supposed lab leak “origin” was back in the headlines this week, as US officials revealed the first three people to contract “Covid” were researchers who worked at the Wuhan institute of virology.
First off, and it’s important people understand this: they can have absolutely no way of knowing this. It is made up.
Second, why are they saying it? Why now after three years?
Probably because more and more people are coming around to the idea Covid wasn’t ever a real “pandemic”, or even a real disease, but rather a rebranding of totally normal respiratory diseases endemic all over the world.
That can’t ever be allowed to take hold, and in the event it gains any mainstream traction they will “reveal the truth” or even “punish those responsible” to divert public anger.
In the meantime, they drip-feed evidence to the public to keep their escape path clear. Like a fire exit, “do not block this door”.
“In case of emergency, pretend it came from a lab.”
3. “Reforming” food safety practices to rush through “sustainable” foods
The UK’s Food Standard’s Agency is in the middle of a revision of its labelling and safety procedures that make it easier for “emerging foods” to bring products to market, according to a report in the The Grocer.
Beginning back in February, the UKFSA has been reviewing its practices for products which contain CBD and – perhaps most tellingly – insect protein.
One proposed reform is introducing a “triage system” which would create a [emphasis added]:
“priority lane” for certain applications, most likely based on the government’s policy agenda around bringing sustainable plant-based alternatives to market”
Another proposed change would be switching to the US system, essentially meaning foods are passed until proven unsafe rather, rather than banned until they are proven safe:
This would mean the threshold for what a company needs to demonstrate to establish their product is ‘safe’ might be more aligned to the US standard of ‘reasonably certain of no harm’ rather than the legacy EU precautionary principle which is a higher standard,”
It’s no secret what this “shake-up” is about, it’s about forcing through approval of lab-grown meat, insect burgers and other “new food”.
BONUS: bizarre Gaffe of the week
Here’s Joe Biden – or what’s left of Joe Biden – inexplicably ending a speech about gun control with “God Save the Queen”.
A Queen who is a) not the queen of America and b) dead.
This gaffe has now gone viral after President @JoeBiden said at the end of his speech in Connecticut, “God save the Queen!” Many were baffled because the Queen is dead, and it was not clear why he said, “God save the Queen.”pic.twitter.com/BNLQpgAEnm
— Simon Ateba (@simonateba) June 16, 2023
It’s not all bad…
A small win coming out of Idaho this week, where the Washington County (Idaho) Republican Central Committee passed a resolution banning the administration of experimental Covid vaccines. This is not a piece of legislation, and for it to become enforced it has to move up to the state Republican Committee, and then to the legislature. So it’s only one small step on a long path, but it’s also an example of how this fight can be won – from the ground up.
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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