China Says Its Social Credit System Has ‘Restored Morality’ by Blacklisting Over 13-Million People


China revealed that, as of March, the Social-Credit system has blocked an unspecified number of citizens from buying over 23-million airplane, train, and bus tickets. It blocked over three times the number of plane tickets as train tickets, suggesting the government is suppressing international travel more than domestic. -GEG

China’s state-run newspaper Global Times
revealed in a column defending the nation’s authoritarian “social
credit system” Monday that the communist regime had blacklisted 13.49
million Chinese citizens for being “untrustworthy.”

The article did not specify what these individuals did to find
themselves on the list, though the regime has revealed the system
assigns a numerical score to every Chinese citizen based on how much the
Communist Party approves of his or her behavior. Anything from
jaywalking and walking a dog without a leash to criticizing the
government on the internet to more serious, violent, and corrupt crimes
can hurt a person’s score. The consequences of a low credit score vary,
but most commonly appear to be travel restrictions at the moment.

China is set to complete the implementation of the system in the
country in 2020. As the date approaches, the government’s propaganda
arms have escalated its promotion as necessary to live in a civilized
society. Last week, the Chinese Communist Youth League released a music
video titled “Live Up to Your Word
featuring well-known Chinese actors and musicians who cater to a
teenage audience. The song in the video urged listeners to “be a
trustworthy youth” and “give thumbs up to integrity” by abiding by the
rules of the Communist Party. While it did not explicitly say the words
“social credit system,” observers considered it a way to promote the
behavior rewarded in social credit points.

Monday’s Global Times piece claimed it will “restore
morality” by holding bad citizens accountable, with “bad” solely defined
in the parameters set by Communist Party totalitarian chief Xi Jinping.
The federal party in Beijing is also establishing a points-based metric
for monitoring the performance of local governments, making it easier to keep local officials in line with Xi’s agenda.

“As of March, 13.49 million individuals have been classified as
untrustworthy and rejected access to 20.47 million plane tickets and
5.71 million high-speed train tickets for being dishonest,” the Global Times
reported, citing the government’s National Development and Reform
Commission (NDRC). Among the new examples the newspaper highlights as
dishonest behavior are failing to pay municipal parking fees, “eating on
the train,” and changing jobs with “malicious intent.”

China had previously revealed
that, as of March, the system blocked an unspecified number of
travelers from buying over 23 million airplane, train, and bus tickets
nationwide. That report did not say how many people the travel bans
affected, as the same person could presumably attempt to buy more
than one ticket or tickets for multiple means of transportation. The
system blocked over three times the number of plane tickets as train
tickets, suggesting the government is suppressing international travel
far more than use of domestic vehicles. At the time of the release of
the initial numbers in March, estimates found China had tripled the
number of people on its no-fly list, which predates the social credit
system.

The Chinese also reportedly found
that some of the populations with the highest number of system
violations lived in wealthy areas, suggesting Xi is targeting
influential businesspeople with the system to keep them under his
command.

In addition to limited access to travel, another punishment the
Chinese government rolled out in March was the use of an embarrassing
ringtone to alert individuals of a low-credit person in their midst. The
ringtone would tell those around a person with low credit to be “careful in their business dealings” with them.

Read full article here…




College Board Trying to Preempt A Possible Supreme Court Rule against College Admissions Based on Race by Using Secret ‘Adversity Score’


The College Board, which develops and administers standardized tests and curricula as part of the college admissions process, is preparing to assign assign a secret “adversity score” to students who take the SAT to get around a potential Supreme Court ruling against race-based admissions. The move is an attempt to do away with differences in test scores that theoretically result from disparities in wealth and education and, by so doing, preempt a possible ruling from the Supreme Court on race-based affirmative action. -GEG

The College Board is going to assign a secret “adversity score” to
students who take the SAT in an apparent attempt to help colleges get
around a potential Supreme Court ruling on race-based admissions.

The
score will be assigned to every single student who takes the test, but
students will not know what the score is, and the College Board is not
disclosing how the score is determined, The Wall Street Journal reports.

Colleges
will see the 1-100 score, called the “Overall Disadvantage Level” when
they view a student’s test results. Anything over 50 designates
hardship.

The move is an attempt to do away with differences in
test scores that result from disparities in wealth and education and
preempts a ruling from the Supreme Court on race-based affirmative
action. Several college admissions officers told The WSJ the tool will
be especially useful if the Supreme Court bans race-based admissions.

“The
purpose is to get to race without using race,” Anthony Carnevale,
former employee of the College Board and director of Georgetown
University’s Center on Education and the Workforce, told The WSJ.

A group representing Asian American students has filed a lawsuit
against Harvard University claiming admissions officers discriminate
against them by penalizing them as a group for high test scores in order
to get a more diverse student body.

Read full article here…




Alabama Passes Strict Anti-Abortion Law to Challenge Supreme Court’s Decision in Roe v. Wade


Alabama Republican Governor Kay Ivey signed the Human Life Protection Act into law that makes most abortions, at any stage, except those necessary to prevent a serious health risk to the mother. The bill has no exemptions for cases of rape and incest and is due to take effect six months after the governor’s signature. It classifies abortion as a Class-A felony, punishable by up to 99 years in prison for abortionists. The bill is intended to challenge the Supreme Court’s decision in Roe v. Wade, in which the high court enshrined the right to abortion as a constitutional right, though such a thing does not exist in the Constitution. -GEG

Alabama Gov. Kay Ivey (R) signed the Human Life Protection Act into law, one that makes most abortions in the state at any point during pregnancy illegal, except those necessary in order to prevent “a serious health risk to the unborn child’s mother.”

“Today, I signed into law the Alabama Human Life Protection Act, a
bill that was approved by overwhelming majorities in both chambers of
the Legislature,” Ivey said Wednesday
upon signing the bill. “To the bill’s many supporters, this legislation
stands as a powerful testament to Alabamians’ deeply held belief that
every life is precious and that every life is a sacred gift from God.”

“To all Alabamians, I assure you that we will continue to follow the
rule of law,” the governor continued, observing the law is similar to
the law in Alabama prior to 1973:

In all meaningful respects, this bill closely resembles
an abortion ban that has been a part of Alabama law for well over 100
years. As today’s bill itself recognizes, that longstanding abortion law
has been rendered “unenforceable as a result of the U.S. Supreme Court
decision in Roe v. Wade.”

No matter one’s personal view on abortion, we can all recognize that,
at least for the short term, this bill may similarly be unenforceable.
As citizens of this great country, we must always respect the authority
of the U.S. Supreme Court even when we disagree with their decisions. 
Many Americans, myself included, disagreed when Roe v. Wade was
handed down in 1973. The sponsors of this bill believe that it is time,
once again, for the U.S. Supreme Court to revisit this important
matter, and they believe this act may bring about the best opportunity
for this to occur.

Read full article here…