By Robert Wenzel
The Trump administration will send a message to all U.S. cellphones on Thursday to test a previously unused alert system that aims to
warn the public about national emergencies.
The messages will bear the headline “Presidential Alert”, the Federal Emergency Management Agency said in a statement. Phones will make a loud tone and have a special vibration, said FEMA, which will send the alert.
The test message, scheduled for 2:18 p.m. EDT, will read: “THIS IS A TEST of the National Wireless Emergency Alert System. No action is needed.”
The test has been scheduled to ensure that the alert system would work in the event of a national emergency. U.S. cell phone users will not be able to opt out.
I don't mind getting alerts from the private sector letting me know what is around me or baseball scores alerts.
In the San Francisco Bay Area, there is an app called Citizen which alerts you when police activity is nearby. I subscribe to it. I also have programmed an ESPN app to alert me to a few final sports scores.
But it is difficult to think what use a government national alert would serve. If we are under nuclear attack, will the alert tell us to hide under our desks?
Further, with typical government arrogance, we will not be able to opt out of the alert.
I view the alert test as typical government propaganda that implies the government could help in some big way that otherwise couldn't possibly occur and, therefore, we need government.
It is kind of the "Who is going to man the lighthouse?" argument. The "This is why we need government" claim on steroids.
Remember, in a vicious obituary, William F. Buckley recalled at the time of Murray Rothbard's death:
Murray Rothbard was a wonderfully pleasant social companion. He had been a friend and colleague-he did the research for the passages in Up from Liberalism that dealt with economics. But in 1962, at an lSI-sponsored seminar at Yale, I spoke derisively, if with good humor, about Murray's proposal to privatize the lighthouses, suggesting that such a platform would persuade listeners less of the advantages of the private sector than of the disadvantages of knowing nothing about lighthouses. Rothbard was outraged and noisily denounced this journal, vowing never again to contribute to it.That is, the dense, or possibly evil Buckley (He is rumored to have been deep state CIA), distorted Murray's powerful pushing of the envelope away from government.
We should take Murray's lead and be outraged at the distortion that government help is required that this government alert pretends to help us in a way the private sector could not.
Robert Wenzel is Editor & Publisher of