Archive for December, 2012


Deal to avert fiscal cliff appears within reach

Updated at 9:46 p.m. — An agreement in principle to avert broad tax increases and spending cuts appeared imminent Monday night.

A senior Democratic source told NBC News that an accord had been reached. A senior GOP source said it “looks good” and that the outcome in the Senate would be clearer after Vice President Joe Biden conferred with Senate Democrats. Biden arrived at the Capitol to meet with Democratic senators Monday night.

Although a Senate vote later Monday night was possible, it’s not clear how an accord would fare in the House.

The interim New Year’s Eve tax deal negotiated by Biden and Senate Republican Leader Sen. Mitch McConnell of Kentucky would raise income taxes on single earners with annual incomes above $400,000 and married couples with incomes above $450,000.

MSNBC’s Milissa Rehberger talks with contributor Ezra Klein and outlines the potential Senate deal that avert the Fiscal Cliff.

As of mid-afternoon Monday, the sticking point involved the “sequester,” the cuts to spending – about $100 billion to start in 2013 — that were mandated by the Budget Control Act which President Barack Obama signed into law last year. Republicans have signaled they might let the sequester take effect unless it was offset by other spending cuts; the GOP has also said it might accept a delay, but only for a few months.

The Obama administration, however, is pushing for a longer delay in implementing the sequester. Otherwise, the president said, replacing those automatic cuts must be “balanced” — shorthand for a combination of new taxes and other spending cuts.

Obama tried to push talks over the finish line earlier in the afternoon with a statement from the White House.

“Today, it appears that an agreement to prevent this New Year’s tax hike is within sight,” the president said at the White House. “But it’s not done.”

In the absence of a broader agreement to resolve the sequester, McConnell appeared in the Senate floor to request a vote only on the tax element of the fiscal cliff.

“Let’s pass the tax relief portion now,” he said. “Let’s take what’s been agreed to and keep moving.”

Read Full Article and Watch Video Here

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Earth Watch Report  –  Storms-  Disaster Management

 

 

SHAKE AND BLOW

Thousands flee floods as cyclone batters Solomon Islands

by Staff Writers
Honiara (AFP)

Thousands of people were forced to flee rapidly rising rivers in the Solomon Islands, officials said Sunday as Cyclone Freda intensified into a “destructive” force storm and headed towards New Caledonia.

Wind gusts had strengthened to more than 231 kilometres per hour (144 miles per hour, 125 knots) as Freda developed into a powerful category four storm, said Sajay Prakesh at the Nadi Tropical Cyclone Centre in Fiji.

“These winds are very destructive and can cause huge damage to infrastructure and buildings,” he told AFP.

Freda is expected to reach New Caledonia on New Year’s Day and “given its current form if it hits New Caledonia Freda will cause huge damage, as it will blow strong winds and heavy rain for six to seven hours”.

Thousands of people from riverside villages had moved to the safety of higher ground, National Disaster Management Office director Loti Yates said.

“But there have been no reports of injury,” he said.

Fishing boats and other craft were advised not to put out to sea and local flights were cancelled as the cyclone moved across the Solomons on a path towards New Caledonia.

Earlier this month Cyclone Evan strengthened to a category four cyclone and left a swathe of devastation in its wake, destroying homes, flooding rivers and stranding thousands of tourists in Fiji.

Before arriving in Fiji, it pummelled neighbouring Samoa, killing at least five.

Related Links
Bringing Order To A World Of Disasters
When the Earth Quakes
A world of storm and tempest

‘Guns are bad!’ CounterThink cartoon reveals hypocrisy of government gun confiscation schemes

gun

 

by Mike Adams, the Health Ranger
Editor of NaturalNews.com

(NaturalNews) While the U.S. government is desperately attempting to disarm the American population by rolling out Adolf Hitler-style gun control, it is simultaneously arming itself to the teeth, buying up 1.6 billion rounds of ammunition and now stockpiling it at ammo depot stations around the country.

The hypocrisy of it all is stunning. While screaming, “GUNS ARE BAD!” to American farmers, ranchers and citizens, the government is buying up billions of dollars worth of guns and ammo itself. This isn’t ammo to be used in a foreign theater of war, by the way, it’s ammo that can only be used domestically, against the American people. (The hollow point ammo violates international war treaties and so cannot be used in international war actions.)

To help us all visualize the hypocrisy in the government’s gun control schemes, I came up with our latest Counterthink cartoon.

Click here for the Counterthink.com page

Here’s the cartoon:

Feel free to post this cartoon on your own website, but please give credit to the original source, which is NaturalNews.com / Counterthink.com.

In addition to purchasing 450 million rounds of hollow point .40 caliber ammo, the U.S. government has also purchased:

• Over one million rounds of hollow-point .223 rifle ammo
• Over half a million rounds of non-hollow-point .223 rifle ammo
• 220,000 rounds of 12 gauge shotgun #7 ammo (target ammo)
• Over 200,000 rounds of 12 gauge shotgun #00 buckshot ammo (tactical anti-personnel ammo)
• 66,000 rounds of 12 gauge shotgun slugs (tactical anti-personnel, anti-vehicle rounds)
• Over two million rounds of hollow-point .357 Sig JHP (hollow-point) pistol ammo (anti-personnel)
• Over four million rounds of .40 S&W JHP (hollow-point) pistol ammo (anti-personnel)
• Over 60,000 rounds of .308 match grade anti-personnel sniper rounds (BTHP)
• Plus, hundreds of thousands of additional rounds of .38 special, .45 auto, 9mm, 7.62×39 (AK rifle) ammo, and others.

Check out more of my cartoons at www.Counterthink.com

Mainstream media actively trying to get gun owners murdered by listing their home addresses

gun

by: J. D. Heyes

(NaturalNews) Fallout from the publication of the names and addresses of some New York handgun permit holders by a local newspaper continues to grow, as shock has turned to outrage amid calls for legal action against the paper’s editors.

As we reported earlier, The Journal News made the incredibly stupid decision to publish the names of handgun-permit holders in Westchester and Rockland counties in New York State.

The paper, which obtained permit-holder information through a Freedom of Information Act request, immediately began figuratively drawing fire from readers and other citizens concerned about the blatant violation of a permit holder’s Fourth Amendment right to privacy – angst which has only exploded since (As an aside, those of you who support gun registration need to consider the distinct possibility that you could be just a FOIA request away from being outed as a gun owner to potential criminals and burglars).

Growing anger

AMI Global Security, which published an article condemning the “massive privacy breach” that is “meant to intimidate the lawful” and “abrogate the Bill of Rights,” gathered just a few of the initial comments:

It is as if they put out an ad to jewel thieves listing the names and addresses of where to find diamonds and cash.

Now everyone knows where the LEGAL GUNS are kept, a valuable piece of information for criminals. Why don’t you do something helpful, like trying to find out where the ILLEGAL GUNS are kept? That would be helpful to the non-criminal population.

If the homeowner is killed or injured, will LOHUD be charged as an accomplice to the crime?

This is CRAZY!! Why in the world would you post every licensed gun owner information?? What do you hope to accomplish by doing this? This is the type of thing you do for sex offenders not law abiding gun owners. What next? Should I hang a flag outside my house that says I own a gun?

The gun owner has an added responsibility to take all measures that their firearms do not fall into the hands of such miscreants. Beside the natural precautions, they cannot permit themselves to fall hostage in trade for access to their firearms locks.

The paper published the names and addresses of legal handgun permit holders in the form of an interactive Web-based map; when you click on a red dot signifying a permit holder, a window box pops up providing the holder’s name and address.

It’s not the first time The Journal News has done something this callous and stupid regarding gun ownership; in 2006 the paper pulled a similar stunt, but only published permit holder’s names and municipalities, not their specific addresses.

“This is what I see,” Scott F. Williams, 41, of Haddon Heights, N.J., near Philadelphia, who served in the Marines as a rifleman, told the paper. “It’s all in the context of the shootings in Newtown … it gets us all talking about gun control. That people are at a heightened concern makes sense to me. I am a gun owner and a pro-Second-Amendment (person). I try to be rational.”

But, continuing, he described the paper’s insane decision to publish names and addresses “highly Orwellian” and simply “mind-boggling.”

“It’s as if gun owners are sex offenders (and) to own a handgun risks exposure as if one is a sex offender. It’s, in my mind, crazy,” he said, according to the paper.

Is publication of names and addresses even legal?

The map and accompanying short story were published under the headline: “The Gun-Owner Next Door: What you don’t know about the weapons in your neighborhood.” In trying to justify their horrendous decision, the paper’s editors explained it stemmed from the recent massacre of 20 Kindergarten children and six adults at the Sandy Hook Elementary School in nearby Newtown, Conn., in mid-December, and – supposedly – the concern expressed by some area residents about which of their neighbors might have guns (as if it that private information is any of their business).

In our initial coverage of this story we advocated for the affected permit holders to pursue some sort of legal action against this paper for what appears to be a blatant violation of their constitutional right to privacy.

The paper is defending its actions by noting that the information they published was legally obtained via a Freedom of Information Act request. But obtaining information and publishing said information are two separate issues and should be addressed as such.

In that vein, we note that there is nothing in any report regarding this story that says permit holders previously agreed to allow the publication of their names and addresses as part of the process of applying for and obtaining said permit. So we are in the process of attempting to find out; we await answers from Rockland and Westchester counties.

If gun permit holders in these counties are consenting, as part of the application process, to allowing publication of their names and addresses, we’re betting most of them don’t know that – but should.

Sources:

http://www.theblaze.com

http://www.naturalnews.com/038479_gun_owners_New_York_newspaper.html

http://www.lohud.com

Adam Lanza’s dead body to be used to criminalize innocents who have similar gene

WHO

by: Ethan A. Huff, staff writer

(NaturalNews) Unknown sources are funneling money into new research aimed at finding the so-called “evil” gene that may have been responsible for the recent mass shooting that allegedly took place at Sandy Hook Elementary School in Newtown, Connecticut. According to the U.K.’s Daily Mail, researchers from the University of Connecticut have been tasked with dissecting the dead body of Adam Lanza, the young man accused of killing 20 children and six adults at the school, in search of a malformed or mutated gene that may have triggered his alleged bout of violent rage that fateful December 14 morning.

Even though there is technically no solid evidence proving that Lanza was even responsible for the killings in the first place, the mainstream media has already declared his guilt, which means the pressure is on to manufacture a reason for the killings in light of the fact that there is no identifiable motive. As you may recall, there were at least two other suspects who fled the scene that day, according to initial reports, one of whom was taken down in the woods next to the school. But these two suspects completely disappeared from all subsequent media reports, and Lanza was pinned as the patsy who committed the crimes (http://www.naturalnews.com).

Much of the “official story” surrounding the Sandy Hook massacre, in fact, makes no sense at all, and there are numerous glaring inconsistencies in virtually all major media reports that scream of a coverup. Nevertheless, the general public has apparently been hoodwinked yet again by what appears to be another false flag attack designed not only to eliminate the Second Amendment to the U.S. Constitution, but also to identify a “flawed” gene that supposedly causes people to go on mass shooting sprees for no reason.

“They might look for mutations that might be associated with mental illnesses and ones that might also increase the risk for violence,” explained Arthur Beaudet, a professor at the Baylor University College of Medicine in Texas, about the new research. “By studying genetic abnormalities we can learn more about conditions better and who is at risk and what might be dramatic treatments.”

Such “dramatic treatments,” of course, are sure to include heavy doses of various psychiatric medications, which have actually been shown to induce more erratic and violent behavior (http://www.naturalnews.com). But what is even more concerning about this plan is that it will be used to criminalize innocent people who possess the “defective gene,” and who will be declared guilty of crimes before they even happen — or in Adam Lanza’s case, be declared guilty without any evidence or a proper trial.

‘Prepping,’ storing guns at home to be criminalized along with ‘evil’ gene

Once the researchers preparing the new study identify this “evil” gene, everyone who possesses that gene will become a criminal, or at the very least a major liability when it comes to getting a job that involves interacting with people. Those who possess the “evil” gene will likely never be hired at public schools, for instance, as their genetic “defect” will simply be too high of a risk — “Think of the children!” they will surely say.

If this Big Brother control scenario is not disturbing enough, the Daily Mail also saw fit to include a caveat that perhaps Adam Lanza’s mother’s “prepping” tendencies may also have set him off. Described as a “prepper” who “stockpiled food and guns in readiness for a disaster,” Nancy Lanza is all but blamed directly in the Daily Mail story for triggering her son Adam’s alleged “mental condition.”

So guns, prepping, and the “evil” gene are now all responsible for mass shootings, and we must do something about them immediately! Can you see the writing on the wall?

Sources for this article include:

http://www.dailymail.co.uk

Facebook bans Gandhi quote as part of revisionist history purge

 

facebook

by Mike Adams, the Health Ranger

Editor of NaturalNews.com

(NaturalNews) The reports are absolutely true. Facebook suspended the Natural News account earlier today after we posted an historical quote from Mohandas Gandhi. The quote reads:

“Among the many misdeeds of British rule in India, history will look upon the Act depriving a whole nation of arms as the blackest.” – Mohandas Gandhi, an Autobiography, page 446.

This historical quote was apparently too much for Facebook’s censors to bear. They suspended our account and gave us a “final warning” that one more violation of their so-called “community guidelines” would result in our account being permanently deactivated.

They then demanded we send them a color copy of a “government issued identification” in order to reactivate our account. Our account was removed from suspension just minutes before InfoWars posted its article on this Facebook censorship, and the Facebook page is now functioning at:
www.Facebook.com/NaturalNews

This is a separate account from our primary Facebook account, which has nearly 250,000 followers at:
www.Facebook.com/HealthRanger

Logic is an enemy and history is a menace

That Facebook would choose to disable our account after we posted a Gandhi quote is incredibly shocking. The historical rise of oppressed Indian people against tyrannical British rule is apparently no longer allowed to be discussed on Facebook. The very IDEA of a free people overcoming tyrannical government rule now “violates community guidelines.” The removal of this content is akin to online book burning and the destruction of history.

This post was not in any way malicious, nor encouraging violence, nor even describing guns or the Second Amendment. It merely reflected the words of one of our world’s most celebrated rebel leaders who helped an entire nation throw off the shackles of oppression and British occupation. That Facebook would find this to “violate community guidelines” is nothing short of absolutely bewildering.

Here is the full image as originally posted on Facebook. Keep in mind that THIS is now considered unacceptable speech across the “Facebook community,” where any number of people can openly call for the murder of the NRA president and have absolutely no action taken against them:

InfoWars.com is also now reporting that Facebook is running an across-the-board PURGE of pro-gun accounts. A huge number of accounts are all being systematically disabled or suspended, with all content being wiped clean.

We have entered the era of the Ministry of Truth from George Orwell’s 1984 novel. And while Facebook assaults the First Amendment in America, Senator Feinstein is busy assaulting the Second.

Facebook declares war on human history

What’s especially alarming about all this is that Gandhi himself was of course a champion of resistance against tyranny. To banish quotes from Gandhi is much like banning quotes of freedom from Martin Luther King (who also openly supported concealed firearms, by the way, and who personally owned an entire “arsenal” of firearms).

What’s next? Will Facebook ban quotes by Thomas Jefferson and George Washington? Any and all patriots, founding fathers and liberty lovers throughout history might soon be stricken from the Facebook servers, and any who dare to post historical quotes supporting liberty, the Bill of Rights, or the Second Amendment risk having their accounts terminated and all content deleted.

Collectivist propaganda has now reached a point where you can’t even discuss liberty or anything out of history that supported the right to keep and bear arms. You are required to stay focused solely on celebrity gossip, sports stars, fashion distractions and tabloid garbage. Anyone who wishes to discuss actual American history must now go underground and speak softly in dimly-lit rooms, behind secret walls and drawn curtains.

The era of total oppression and collectivist mind control has fully arrived in America. This is not hyperbole… IT IS HERE NOW.

Memorize this quote, because it too shall soon be purged from the internet:

“The tree of liberty must be refreshed from time to time with the blood of patriots and tyrants.” – Thomas Jefferson.

Dare to post that on Facebook and you risk your account being disabled or deleted.

By

 

A 31-year-old woman was arrested on Saturday and charged with second-degree murder as a hate crime in connection with the death of a man who was pushed onto the tracks of an elevated subway station in Queens and crushed by an oncoming train.

Uli Seit for The New York Times

Erika Menendez, 31, charged with second-degree murder as a hate crime, was led out of the 112th Precinct in Queens on Saturday.

 
Victor J. Blue for The New York Times

Police personnel patrolling the 40th Street-Lowery Street station on Friday, where a man was pushed in front of a 7 train.

The woman, Erika Menendez, selected her victim because she believed him to be a Muslim or a Hindu, Richard A. Brown, the Queens district attorney, said.

“The defendant is accused of committing what is every subway commuter’s nightmare: Being suddenly and senselessly pushed into the path of an oncoming train,” Mr. Brown said in an interview.

In a statement, Mr. Brown quoted Ms. Menendez, “in sum and substance,” as having told the police: “I pushed a Muslim off the train tracks because I hate Hindus and Muslims ever since 2001 when they put down the twin towers I’ve been beating them up.” Ms. Menendez conflated the Muslim and Hindu faiths in her comments to the police and in her target for attack, officials said.

The victim, Sunando Sen, was born in India and, according to a roommate, was raised Hindu.

Mr. Sen “was allegedly shoved from behind and had no chance to defend himself,” Mr. Brown said. “Beyond that, the hateful remarks allegedly made by the defendant and which precipitated the defendant’s actions should never be tolerated by a civilized society.”

Mr. Brown said he had no information on the defendant’s criminal or mental history.

“It will be up to the court to determine if she is fit to stand trial,” he said.

Ms. Menendez is expected to be arraigned by Sunday morning. If convicted, she faces a maximum penalty of life in prison. By charging her with murder as a hate crime, the possible minimum sentence she faced would be extended to 20 years from 15 years, according to prosecutors.

 

Read Full ArticleHere

 

Earth Watch Report  –  Flooding

Jakarta sinking as water supplies dry up

By Indonesia correspondent George Roberts

 

 

Some suburbs in the capital already go underwater when there is a big tide but the problem is expected to get even worse.

Jakarta is sinking by up to 10 centimetres a year and Indonesia’s national disaster centre says with oceans rising, large parts of the city, including the airport, will be inundated by 2030.

Flooding and high tides are already causing problems for some residents in the city of 10 million people.

Kartoyo’s roadside food stall is swimming in about 30 centimetres of water.

“It has been easier,” he said.

“This kind of flood is manageable but hopefully it won’t get higher.”

“The people here before, they couldn’t even go to the market because of the flood and the children couldn’t go to school.”

In 2009 the council built a small sea wall, but the ocean still pushes its way up through the drains and into homes.

Very interesting that the  fact that a teenager being  held for sexual favors is not condemned or spoken about other than to explain who the teenager was. Yet the fact that  the  same teenager who was being kept for sex drugged and helped kill not only the Commander but  seven other officers is referred to as a betrayal?  Really ?  I suppose  the teenager should have  been  grateful? 

Perhaps if he had not been held against his will to be used for the man’s pleasure they would all be alive now?

Is that a  far fetched assumption?

I am no fan of the  Taliban, but something is seriously skewed when  behavior like this goes unchallenged?  A  tragedy  was bound to ensue one way or another.

 

********************************************************************************

Rahmat Gul/Associated Press

A graduation ceremony for Afghan police officers in the eastern city of Jalalabad on Thursday. More Photos »

By

 

Early Thursday morning, an Afghan policeman unlocked the door of the check post where he was stationed in Oruzgan Province and let in his friends from the Taliban, who helped him attack his sleeping colleagues with knives and guns, eventually killing four and wounding eight.

On Sunday, a local police commander in a remote northern province, Jawzjan, shot to death, in their beds, five men under his command and fled to join the Taliban.

And on Dec. 18, a teenager, apparently being kept for sexual purposes by an Afghan border police commander in southern Kandahar Province, drugged the commander and the other 10 policemen at the post to put them to sleep, and then shot them all; eight died.

In the crisis that has risen in the past year over insider killings, in which Afghan security forces turn on their allies, the toll has been even heavier for the Afghans themselves — at least 86 in a count by The New York Times this year, and the full toll is likely to be higher — than it has been for American and other NATO forces, which have lost at least 62 so far, the latest in Kabul on Monday.

Unlike most insider attacks against foreign forces, known as “green on blue” killings, most of the attacks between Afghans, “green on green,” have been clear cases of either infiltration by Taliban insurgents or turncoat attacks. As with the three recent attacks, they have fallen most heavily on police units, and they have followed a familiar pattern: the Taliban either infiltrate someone into a unit, or win over someone already in a unit, who then kills his comrades in their sleep. Frequently, the victims are first poisoned or drugged at dinner.

“I tell my cook not to allow any police officer in the kitchen,” said Taaj Mohammad, a commander of a border police check post near the one in Kandahar that was attacked on Dec. 18. “This kind of incident really creates mistrust among comrades, which is not good. Now we don’t trust anyone, even those who spent years in the post.”

The most recent of the green-on-green betrayals took place on Thursday about 3 a.m., in the town of Tirin Kot, the capital of Oruzgan Province in southern Afghanistan. According to Fareed Ayal, a spokesman for the provincial police chief, a police officer named Hayat Khan, who had been in regular touch with the Taliban for religious guidance, waited until the other officers at his check post fell asleep and then called Taliban fighters by cellphone and let them in. First the attackers stabbed the one officer who was on watch, but he raised the alarm in time to awaken some of the police officers.

Read Full Article Here

By Alexander Bolton – 12/31/12 08:51 PM ET

Democratic opposition to a fiscal cliff deal negotiated between Vice President Biden and Senate Republican Leader Mitch McConnell (R-Ky.) is holding up a deal to extend tax rates and postpone spending cuts.

Biden will meet with the Senate Democratic caucus at 9:15, Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid’s office announced. The meetings comes after labor leaders, progressive groups and some Democrats have criticized the tax deal Biden negotiated.

Senate Democrats say they will not sign off on the deal because of details related to the extension of the estate tax. Biden and McConnell agreed to set the estate tax at 40 percent and exempt inheritances below $5 million.

But Senate Democrats do not want to index the estate-tax exemption to inflation, even though Republicans say Biden already agreed to the indexing.

“That’s never going to happen,” a senior Senate Democratic aide said of the Republican demand to raise the inheritance tax exemption to keep pace with inflation. The aide denied that Biden had ever agreed to indexing the level.

But Democrats are divided on the issue. Senate Finance Committee Chairman Max Baucus (D-Mont.) said he supports pegging the estate tax exemption to inflation.

Republican aides familiar with the talks say Biden signed off on the deal early Monday morning in order to prevent tax hikes from hitting the middle class. With no action, most households would see their taxes rise and the estate tax would jump to 55 percent for inheritances over $1 million.

“Biden signed off on all of it last night,” said a GOP official.

A senior Democratic aide, however, countered, “that’s not true.”

President Obama in comments Monday afternoon also appeared to suggest the deal between McConnell and Biden would hold, saying the sides were close to an agreement though it was “not done yet.”

Republicans say Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid (D-Nev.) has raised various last-minute objections to the deal. They say the first one came at 6 a.m. Monday when Reid balked at language relating to the automatic spending cuts known as the sequester.

The Senate went into recess subject to the call of the chair after 8 p.m. on Monday, leaving it unclear whether there would be a deal or votes in the upper chamber before midnight, when tax rates are set to expire.

A Senate Democratic aide insisted Reid has not yet signed off on what Biden negotiated.

It even appeared that Reid was not fully aware Biden and McConnell had begun substantive negotiations on Sunday as one Senate Democratic aide expressed doubt at the time that the talks were actually taking place.

 

Read Full Article Here

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