April 19th, 2024


Peaceful Transfer of Power Update!

Mark Steyn

By Mark Steyn

Published April 1, 2024


These are tough times to be an opposition candidate. You can be accused of "incitement to insurrection" and "defamation of a constituted body". If necessary, they'll throw you in prison and dissolve your party for "frequently calling on its supporters to insurrectional movements".

No, not Trump (yet), but Senegalese presidential candidate Bassirou Diomaye Faye. Ten days before the election he was released from gaol, and he won the election.


But not yet a trend. And, of course, Senegal has a much more principled constitutional court than America.

Still, the other day was a goodish day for Trump, NY-shakedown-wise: The court cut the bond required for his appeal by two-thirds, down to a mere $175 million.

As for another defendant targeted by America's evil Deep State - in this case, a man Trump declined to pardon at the end of his presidency - this morning came news from the King's Bench Division (where I shall be in June - gulp):

I have been entirely consistent on this since Day One.Then there was the preamble to my full-length interview with Julian Assange's brother. If the most lavishly funded Deep State on earth can't keep its secrets, that is its problem. It has no right to drag those who owe it no allegiance into its foul septic tank simply because they have committed the non-crime of embarrassing them. Mr Assange is an Australian subject of the Crown - and no court in London, Oz or anywhere else should have entertained extradition for a moment, certainly not after the revelation that Mike Pompeo drew up plans to have Assange killed while he was in the Ecuadorian Embassy.

Did Pompeo run that by Trump? Oh, well. The King's Bench was relaxed about it:

The judge took account of evidence that the CIA had planned to kidnap Mr Assange from the Ecuadorian Embassy. She concluded that this was not related to the extradition proceedings, and that it had not been shown that any risk would arise if he was extradited to the United States...

I would say it's not a risk, but a certainty: delivered into the care of America's Bureau of Prisons, he'll be lucky to make it to trial. So it is a somewhat limited right of appeal - and the dirty stinking rotten corrupt US Department of Justice has been given three weeks to provide the King's Bench with certain undertakings on:

a) American courts' lack of prejudice against foreigners (ha! tell me about it);

b) the First Amendment's application to foreigners (likewise); and

c) the DOJ's eschewing of the death penalty (so just 175 years in the Supermax).

That's all bollocks. Once he's on US soil they can do what they like to him - and they will.

As Conrad Black and I agreed on a recent edition of The Mark Steyn Show, no country should extradite to the dirty rotten stinking corrupt US justice system. Until that day of global comity dawns, my advice is to make sure, when fleeing jurisdiction, that you pick a joint that has no extradition treaty with America - and particularly not one as pitifully one-sided as the post-9/11 US/UK agreement. If I were an election candidate of any party - Tory, Labour, Reform - I would be campaigning on a pledge to repeal that disgraceful piece of legislation.

You can read the full judgment here.

~As is traditional, the jackals of Fleet Street, after three months of demanding the Palace come clean about what's up with Kate, have turned on a sixpence and are now hailing "the enormous dignity of the Princess of Wales" and angrily denouncing those who refused to let her in peace - ie, themselves.

I certainly wish Her Royal Highness the very best, as I would any mother of young children facing this news. Given the announcement of the King's own cancer, comparisons have been made with George VI in 1951. But that hardly does justice to the statistical improbability of the present situation, summed up in the much retailed account of His Majesty in slippers and dressing gown padding down the hospital corridor to visit the Princess when they were both in the cancer ward of the London Clinic.

It is not often that father-in-law and daughter-in-law have simultaneous cancers. From a Taiwanese study on what it calls "cancer clustering", in The British Medical Journal:

Genetic susceptibilities have been considered risk factors of cancer among family members.1 However, previous studies have reported the clustering of cancer among married couples who did not share genetic relatedness. Family clustering of cancer develops when the occurrence of cancer within a family exceeds the expected occurrence in the population. Prior related research has indicated that several types of cancer, including lung, stomach, skin and upper aerodigestive tract cancer, could aggregate within couples because of shared exposure such as smoking and ultraviolet radiation. Moreover, high age was closely related to high odds of cancer among long-standing spouses. This association was explained by the presence of chronic conditions including obesity and diabetes after midlife. Whether the shared exposure or high-age vulnerability determines cancer clustering is uncertain.

None of the above seems to account for the King and his daughter-in-law's contemporaneous conditions. On the other hand, it may just be that there's a lot more cancer around these days. The Telegraph reports:

As Princess of Wales reveals diagnosis, doctors warn of mysterious cancer 'epidemic'

The disease is affecting fit, younger people more often – and researchers do not yet understand why.

The Princess originally went into hospital for abdominal surgery. As the story notes:

Dr Shivan Sivakumar, associate professor in oncology at the University of Birmingham, agreed with Prof Beggs: "There is an epidemic currently of young people getting cancer (under 50s).

"It is unknown the cause of this, but we are seeing more patients getting abdominal cancers."

Models based on global data predict that the number of early-onset cancer cases will increase by around 30 per cent between 2019 and 2030, a markedly faster increase than the previous 30 years.

A thirty per cent increase between 2019 - by sheer coincidence, the last Normal Year - and 2030 sounds rather a lot to me. And no, I'm not (yet) blaming it all on the old jabba-jabba. Nevertheless, I'm inclined to agree with my friends at The Conservative Woman. From the pre-print of a brand new paper on the rise of cancers in Americans aged 15-44:

The increase in excess mortality in both 2021 (Z-score of 11.8) and 2022 (Z-score of 16.5) are highly statistically significant (extreme events). When looking at neoplasm death reported as one of multiple cause of death, we observe a similar trend with excess mortality of 3.3% (Z-score of 5.1) in 2020, 7.9% (Z-score of 12.1) in 2021, and 9.8% (Z-score of 15.0) in 2022, which were also highly statistically significant. The results indicate that from 2021 a novel phenomenon leading to increased neoplasm deaths appears to be present in individuals aged 15 to 44 in the US. The greater rise in deaths due to neoplasms in multiple causes compared to underlying cause indicates that some deaths from neoplasms are being brought forward by other causes.

Mark's international bestseller America Alone: The End of the World as We Know It. If you haven't read the book during its first seventeen years, well, you're missing a treat. It's still in print in hardback and paperback. (Buy it at a 77% discount by clicking here or order in KINDLE edition at a 47% discount by clicking here. Sales help fund JWR)


Mark Steyn is an international bestselling author, a Top 41 recording artist, and a leading Canadian human rights activist. Among his books is "The Undocumented Mark Steyn: Don't Say You Weren't Warned". (Buy it at a 49% discount by clicking here or order in KINDLE edition at a 67% discount by clicking here. Sales help fund JWR)