Politics and Legislation
Yesterday, Attorney General Eric Holder provided congressional testimony for the seventh time regarding Operation Fast And Furious, the illegal, dangerous, and idiotic ATF plan to let guns “walk” across the border into the hands of Mexican drug cartels, allegedly to allow the guns to be tracked back to subsequent criminal activity and then apprehend those responsible. One of the many problems with the hairbrained plan was that the ATF couldn’t track the weapons once they went into Mexico, and in fact neither ATF agents in Mexico nor the Mexican government was even made aware of the existence of the Fast And Furious plan. Thousand of guns went across the border in violation of federal law and in violation of the ATF’s own mission statement, and as a result, the guns were used in numerous violent criminal activities in Mexico and an American border patrol agent, Brian Terry, was killed with Fast And Furious weapons. Mexican officials are understandably furious, and congressional investigators, headed by Darrell Issa (R-CA), are trying to get to the bottom of who knew what and how high knowledge of the gun walking went.
The reason AG Holder is being questioned is, the ATF works under the Department Of Justice, which is headed by Holder, and Fast And Furious began in 2009, during the Obama administration, for whom Holder works.
A previous and much smaller ATF gun walking operation, called Operation Wide Receiver, began in 2006 during the Bush administration. That smaller flawed operation didn’t work, and was shut down in 2007. Write it down as a very bad idea, a failed experiment….so why would the ATF greatly expand upon the same failed strategy again in 2009 with Fast And Furious ? Enquiring minds would like to know.
Holder has been using the Sergeant Schultz “I know nothing” excuse. He claims no high ranking officials at Justice knew about Fast And Furious, including himself. When asked in April 2011 when he first became aware of Fast And Furious gun walking, Holder told Congress he found out just a few weeks earlier when the news became public. That was disproven by e-mails showing Holder had been informed at least ten months earlier. After his previous statement was disproven, Holder hilariously claimed he didn’t understand the question he was being asked. He then admitted he knew about Fast And Furious, but not the gun walking. I’ll repeat Issa’s question and answer here just to illustrate how ridiculous Holder’s new response was:
ISSA: Mr. Attorney General, we have two Border Patrol agents who are dead, who were killed by guns that were allowed, as far as we can tell, to deliberately walk out of gun shops under the program often called Fast and Furious. This program, as you know — and the President’s been asked about it, you’ve been asked about it – allowed for weapons to be sold to straw purchasers, and ultimately, many of those weapons are today in the hands of drug cartels and other criminals. When did you first know about the program, officially, I believe, called Fast and Furious? To the best of your knowledge, what date?
HOLDER: I’m not sure of the exact date but I probably heard about Fast and Furious for the first time over the last few weeks.
There was nothing at all unclear about Issa’s question, and it was about gun walking in particular. Holder lied. Again.
When that excuse didn’t fly, the ever creative Holder made the odd claim that he didn’t read all his e-mails. In effect, Holder was saying, “I’m not a liar. I’m just inept at my job”. Obama should have fired Holder the second those words came out of Holder’s mouth. Who wants an AG who doesn’t even read his e-mails, for chrissakes ?
Btw, during the Bush years, VP Cheney’s assistant, Scooter Libby, was sentenced to jail for being wrong about the date he found out the CIA identity of Valerie Plame, and Libby was only off by one month. And Libby didn’t even divulge Plame’s identity to the press. Holder was off by a minimum of ten months, and then gave two followup explanations that defy credulity.
That brings us to yesterday’s’ hearing. The date-challenged, question-misunderstanding, e-mail non-reader Holder had the following exchange with Rep. Jason Chaffetz (R-UT):
“You claim with passion that nobody at the senior levels at the Department of Justice prior to the death of [border patrol] agent Brian Terry knew that guns were walking, and I’ve got an email from Jason Weinstein using the term ‘guns walking,’” Chaffetz said.
Holder ducked the question, saying that the email referred to a different operation.
“That refers to Wide Receiver, not Fast and Furious,” balked Holder.
Chaffetz fired back “That is not what the February 4 letter that was sent to the United States Congress said. that’s not true.”
Holder stood his ground, compelling Chaffetz to read every email verbatim to the committee.
“The email says Fast and Furious, you say it doesn’t. I’ve got it in black and white,” Chaffetz said.
“I have superior knowledge,” answered Holder.
Once again, Holder seems to be avoiding honesty. Here’s what the e-mail in question actually says:
“It’s not clear how much we’re involved in the main F and F [Fast and Furious] case,” reads the email, “but we have Tucson [Wide Receiver] and now a new unrelated case with [redacted] targets. It’s not any big surprise that a bunch of US guns are being used in MX [Mexico], so I’m not sure how much grief we get for ‘guns walking.’ It may be more like ‘Finally, they’re going after people who sent guns down there.’”
Clearly, the e-mail refers to BOTH Fast And Furious and Wide Receiver, and it also references a “bunch of US guns” in Mexico, as was the case with Fast And Furious.
So now we have Holder’s latest excuse – Fast And Furious doesn’t mean Fast And Furious. No wonder Issa is ready to blow his top, and Congress is considering a contempt citation against Eric Holder.
Rubio’s effort to reach out to Hispanic voters could backfire on Senate floor
Republicans hope Sen. Marco Rubio (R-Fla.) can help them reach out to Hispanic voters but any debate on immigration reform could end up alienating the bloc they are courting.
Groups that want to stem the flow of illegal immigration say a bill Rubio has crafted could become a vehicle for other proposals, such as legislation requiring employers to verify the immigration status of workers and revoking birthright citizenship.
Votes on these controversial proposals could hurt Republicans with Hispanic voters but may also rally the GOP base, which wants the federal government to do more to combat illegal immigration.
Rubio will soon unveil a plan to grant legal residency to illegal immigrants who came to the country as children if they meet certain requirements. It would serve as an alternative to the Democrats’ DREAM Act, which grants a path to citizenship for illegal immigrants who came to the U.S. at a young age.
“I suspect it will become a vehicle for all sorts of amendments,” said Ira Mehlman, spokesman for the Federation for American Immigration Reform, in reference to Rubio’s bill.
Rubio said he is waiting to get “final figures from the Congressional Budget Office” about how much the bill would cost and how many immigrants it would affect.
GOP governors bolster sales tax push
Gov. Terry Branstad of Iowa this week became the latest in a string of top Republican state officials to back federal legislation giving states more freedom to collect online sales taxes.
Branstad’s letter of support, obtained exclusively by The Hill, comes not long after another prominent Republican governor, Chris Christie of New Jersey, also urged Congress to get moving on sales tax legislation.
But despite the increasingly vocal push from Republican governors and retail groups for a federal solution, supporters of online sales tax legislation face a heavy lift in getting a measure through Congress this year.
Christie and Branstad are among about a dozen GOP governors to back the push for online sales tax legislation. Other state leaders who are on board include Mitch Daniels of Indiana, Paul LePage of Maine and Rick Snyder of Michigan.
Branstad, who was Iowa governor in the 1980s and 90s and who won a fifth term in 2010, heads a swing state that plays a prominent role in nominating presidential candidates.
In a letter sent Thursday, Branstad encouraged his home-state senators to support a solution that he said would close a longstanding loophole.
“I understand that the coalition supporting this legislation is now very broad which gives me hope that, under your leadership, this legislation can be passed yet this year,” Branstad wrote to Sens. Chuck Grassley (R) and Tom Harkin (D).
“The Internet is now a robust, mature and dynamic marketplace that does not warrant special protections,” he added. “The application of sales taxes only to ‘brick-and-mortar’ retailers, many of which are small businesses, puts those very entities at a competitive disadvantage.”
That’s the same argument other GOP governors have made — that the legislation would level the playing field between online operations and brick-and-mortar shops while giving states more tools to balance budgets and enforce tax laws.
Russia says it’s not opposed to US calls for Assad to step down
Russian Foreign Minister Sergei Lavrov told reporters Saturday that Russia isn’t against a negotiated deal for Syrian President Bashar al Assad to step down, a hopeful sign that the Obama administration’s approach might work.
“If the Syrians agree (about Assad’s departure) between each other, we will only be happy to support such a solution,” Lavrov told reporters, according to Reuters.
Lavrov’s comments, while encouraging to the U.S., weren’t without caveats however.
“But we believe it is unacceptable to impose the conditions for such a dialogue from outside,” he added.
A key Syrian ally, Russia has been seen as an impediment to Assad’s removal because his government hosts Russia’s sole naval base outside the former Soviet Union, at Tartus on the Mediterranean. Russia has twice vetoed United Nations resolutions that just hinted at sanctions against Syria.
Future ‘VP?’ Rand Paul Compromised by NWO Puppets Robama aka Obomney? Time4Real 3rd Party?
Published on Jun 8, 2012 by women4truth
The Difference Between “Obomney” and “Robama” Is Only Skin Deep: http://goo.gl/vocdI
Comparing side by side the words and political stances of Republican and Democratic presidential candidates Mitt Romney and President Barack Obama. Includes topics like universal health care, gun rights, energy, NDAA, the Patriot Act, Iran, sanctions, economic stimulus. bank and auto bailouts, civil rights, TARP, the Federal Reserve, Ben Bernanke, campaign donations, and more. Thanks for watching & please share! Compiled with videos from news, interviews, rally footage, and more, IN COMPLIANCE WITH THE FAIR USE ACT.
~Google Trends shows Evidence that Ron Paul Supporters beats Mainstream Media: 12 moths: http://goo.gl/d9iUW & 2004 upto now: http://goo.gl/Db2WG (study ‘News Reference Volume” graph vs “Search volume index” graph) … Mainstream knows Alternative Media is on the Rise faster and faster! They Fear That we Know we are not “powerless”. BACKUP SCREEN-SNAPSHOT: http://goo.gl/bzIbF (to expose possible Google Trends future censorship)
Free Thinkers Network Co-Creating Alternative Timeline towards 2012 & Beyond!
When Freedom Radiates & Truth Resonates, Tyranny Falls.
Big Brother Surveillance Society is NOT there to “protect” you, but to protect the NWO Mafia, they know YOU gonna be -Mad as Hell- about their abuse of power !
Hijacked Governments Legalize Corporate Crimes & Criminalizing Real Solutions: Suppressed inventions & Alternative Cures, google “When Healing Becomes a Crime” & “Hemp Revolution”
“corporatism” = police enforcing more & more totally insane unconstitutional laws & regulations
Nobody knows what all know together THAT is why we need to consider all options. Those who silence or downplay messengers are not part of the Spiritual rEvolution.
A “master” can only be a master, if the slave acts, thinks or believes he is a “slave”.
NWO Mafia loves Power of Perception more than Power over information.
Most conspiracy researchers walking in a hall of mirrors, quicksand here & there, you’ve got a minefield added for free.
Vital information CAN stand on it’s own feet, does not need any confirmation from any (corrupt) “authority”. YOU are the only one that can convince oneself in doing research, cross-reference check mentioned sources, names-places-dates research gov. declassified archives, authors, documentary makers etc.
If you “hate” you BECOME what you’re fighting against.
Radiating True Freedom you inspire & trigger others to do the same with more effect than wanting to “change” the other.
Part of Spiritual rEvolution is “Planting Seeds of Considerations”, CONSIDER THIS:
You are always MORE than the limited thoughts you’re having about yourself and you know it, maybe afraid for the consequences & responsibilities.
You are always MORE than the limited thoughts other people claim who you “suppose to be”.
Learn to trust your unlimited potential, gifts, intuitions, talents if YOU are not standing in the way of who you truly are, you do not need to projecting (broadcasting) distrust of yourself towards the future. Be kind to yourself.
If you live in the now and ACT what you feel, sense what is really necessary in the moment, without self-censorship, sabotage thoughts & self-limitations, allowing yourself to surprise yourself and LIVING it, you experience what Spiritual Freedom is all about and do not need any “book wisdom” or workshops.
Source: Sacred Fire of Liberty
John Aziz of Azizonomics notes that Rand Paul supports the destruction of the Fifth and Fourteenth Amendments by supporting Mitt Romney:
Perhaps that’s Rand’s idea of playing politics? Come to the table, strike a deal, get what you can. Trouble is, it’s tough striking a good deal when the guy on the other side of the table believes that the government should be allowed to claim – without having to produce any evidence whatsoever – that certain people are terrorists, and therefore should be detained indefinitely without any kind of due process.
Aziz quotes Romney’s explicit support of the criminal NDAA:
Yes, I would have [signed the NDAA]. And I do believe that it is appropriate to have in our nation the capacity to detain people who are threats to this country, who are members of al Qaeda. Look, you have every right in this country to protest and to express your views on a wide range of issues but you don’t have a right to join a group that has killed Americans, and has declared war against America. That’s treason. In this country we have a right to take those people and put them in jail. If I were president I would not abuse this power. But people who join al Qaeda are not entitled to rights of due process under our normal legal code. They are entitled instead to be treated as enemy combatants.
The Fifth Amendment deserves to be cited:
No person shall be held to answer for a capital, or otherwise infamous crime, unless on a presentment or indictment of a Grand Jury, except in cases arising in the land or naval forces, or in the Militia, when in actual service in time of War or public danger; nor shall any person be subject for the same offense to be twice put in jeopardy of life or limb; nor shall be compelled in any criminal case to be a witness against himself, nor be deprived of life, liberty, or property, without due process of law; nor shall private property be taken for public use, without just compensation.
Neocons and conservatives would likely argue that we are currently at war and the detainment without trial of alleged members of al-Qaeda and other supposed terrorist groups is legal. But this underscores yet another violation of the Constitution – none of the conflicts initiated by the United States following the attacks of September 11, 2001, were official declarations of war under Article 1, Section 8 of the Constitution and are thus illegal (and impeachable offenses).
The NDAA is probably the most egregious violation of the Constitution in the modern era. It was struck down by Judge Katherine Forrest.
Naomi Wolf notes:
Forrest asked repeatedly, in a variety of different ways, for the government attorneys to give her some assurance that the wording of section 1021 could not be used to arrest and detain people like the plaintiffs. Finally she asked for assurance that it could not be used to sweep up a hypothetical peaceful best-selling nonfiction writer who had written a hypothetical book criticizing US foreign policy, along lines that the Taliban might agree with. Again and again the two lawyers said directly that they could not, or would not, give her those assurances. In other words, this back-and-forth confirmed what people such as Glenn Greenwald, the Bill of Rights Defense Committee, the ACLU and others have been shouting about since January: the section was knowingly written in order to give the president these powers; and his lawyers were sent into that courtroom precisely to defeat the effort to challenge them. Forrest concluded: ”At the hearing on this motion, the government was unwilling or unable to state that these plaintiffs would not be subject to indefinite detention under [section] 1021. Plaintiffs are therefore at risk of detention, of losing their liberty, potentially for many years.“
It is unfortunate to admit that if we ever have the chance to arrest and put on trial Obama, Romney (if he is elected) and others responsible for subverting the Constitution by enacting the NDAA and other laws, Rand Paul will be forced to stand in the docket with them as accused traitors.
As lamentable and sad is the fact that in order to clear his good name and prestige, Ron Paul will be obliged to denounce his own son.
Everyone knows America has too much debt. What they don’t know is that things are getting better, not worse.
Little by little, our economy is reducing its debt burden, slowly repairing the damage caused by 10, 20 or 30 years of excess.
If you want to know why economic growth has been so tepid, here’s your answer. Four years after the storm hit, the economy is still deleveraging. And it’s very hard for any economy to grow when everyone is focused on increasing their savings.
Total domestic – public and private – debt as a share of the economy has declined for 12 quarters in a row after surging over the previous decade.
The rapid rise in federal debt over the past four years has distracted us from the big picture. The level of public debt is indeed worrisome, but it’s not as big a worry as the economy’s total level of debt – public and private.
Although we have a whole cottage industry devoted to warning us about the dangers of too much public debt, we don’t have any comparable Cassandras telling us about the dangers of too much private debt. Yet the history of the past 30 years (or 300) clearly shows that too much debt, of whatever variety, can pose a systemic risk to the national and global economies.
As much as we hear politicians, pundits, tea-party patriots and the Congressional Budget Office obsessing about government debt, it was excessive private debt – not public debt – that caused the 2008 financial meltdown. And it was private debt – some of it since transferred to the public – that lies behind the current European debt crisis. (Greece is unique in having a public sector that ran up spending while its private sector is rather conservative.)
As the political rhetoric about the federal deficit has heated up, we’ve lost sight of the progress that’s been made in bringing total debt back under control. The U.S. is actually doing much better than you’d think if you just listened to the conventional fears about how we’re rushing headlong into a debt Armageddon.
In fact, since the recession ended in June 2009, total U.S. debt has risen at the slowest pace since they began keeping records in the early 1950s. While Washington has taken on a lot of debt since then, the private sector has paid off, written off or dumped on the government almost as much.
As a share of the economy, debt has plunged as a consequence of rapid deleveraging by families, banks, nonfinancial businesses, and state and local governments. The ratio of total debt to gross domestic product has fallen from 3.73 times GDP to 3.36 times.
In the 11 quarters since the recession officially ended, total domestic debt has risen by just $702 billion, or 1.4%. By contrast, in the 11 quarters before the recession began, in those bubble years of 2005, 2006 and 2007, total debt increased by $10.7 trillion, or 28%.
And it wasn’t just the U.S., other advanced economies were adding on to their debt loads as well, with most of the debt taken out by the private sector.
Debt was growing at an unsustainable pace, but it was fueling the U.S. and global economies.
Economists who have studied the impact of indebtedness have found that low levels of debt are essential to growth, but that high levels of total outstanding debt can hurt an economy. Beyond a tipping point, adding on more debt will reduce growth over the long run, even if it inflates a bubble in the short run.
“At low levels, debt is good. It is a source of economic growth and stability,” concluded Stephen Cecchetti, M.S. Mohanty and Fabrizio Zampolli, economists for the Bank of International Settlements, in a paper presented at the Federal Reserve’s Jackson Hole conference last August. “Beyond a certain point, debt becomes dangerous and excessive,” and can lead to increased volatility, financial fragility and slower growth. It can even bring down the real economy with it, as we have seen. Read the BIS paper, “The Real Effects of Debt.”
Cecchetti and his co-authors found that growth can be impaired once nonfinancial corporate debt hits about 90% of GDP, or when household debts hit 85% of GDP, or when public debts hit about 85%.
In the U.S., household debt has now fallen to 84% of GDP from a peak of 98%. Nonfinancial corporate debt has fallen to 77% from a peak of 83%. Financial sector debt has plunged from 123% of GDP to 89%. Public debt has risen to 89% from 56%.
The deleveraging process in the private sector still has a ways to run, not based on some economists’ rule of thumb, but based on what real people are actually doing. Banks and households are still slashing their debt, while nonfinancial companies are beginning to borrow again, but only a little, according to the latest data from the Federal Reserve’s flow of funds report. Take a look at the flow of funds.
According to a study by McKinsey published earlier this year, U.S. households may have two more years of deleveraging left before their debts are sustainable again.
If McKinsey is right, the U.S. economy may have to endure a couple more years of slow growth.
Rex Nutting is a columnist and MarketWatch’s international commentary editor, based in Washington.
Comment: . The author of this article is either clueless, or cynically spinning the statistics. The global economy is obviously getting worse, while within the above article there is a claim of an official end to the recession.
For example: “The ratio of total debt to gross domestic product has fallen from 3.73 times GDP to 3.36 times.”
If the quote is correct total debt is the U.S. total Gross Domestic Product (GDP) which is the amount of money created per year is 3.36 times over. This means that if all U.S. government spending stopped (military, subsidies, programs, loans etc..) it would take 3.36 years just to go from deep in the red to black. And remember this has been compounding year after year.
The estimated population of the United States is 312,915,536
so each citizen’s share of this debt is $50,307.35.The National Debt has continued to increase an average of $3.93 billion per day since September 28, 2007!
Submitted by Tyler Durden
Just out from Bloomberg:
- SPAIN AGREES TO SEEK BANK BAILOUT, EL PAIS REPORTS
- IMF WILL SUPERVISE SPAIN BANK RESCUE PLAN, EL PAIS SAYS
And the funniest:
- SPAIN RESCUE DOESN’T CARRY ECONOMIC POLICY CONDITIONS: MUNDO
So Spain has shockingly agreed to a bank bailout without conditions. Has Germany? The chips will commence falling, where they may, shortly. In the meantime, we are days from finding out just what Germany thinks when it has to ratify (that’s right, the ESM has still not been ratified by the one country which will fund the Spanish bailout) the direct rescue of the Spanish banks. Without conditions.
From El Pais:
All ready to rescue the fourth largest economy in the eurozone. Ministers of Economy and Finance of the euro area have concluded a few minutes of the meeting by teleconference 19.00 convened to decide on the future of Spain and, according to AFP, it was agreed that the Government seek the rescue, which will be IMF involvement. The agenda of the meeting, as previously reported in European officials left no doubt: “The approval of a statement that highlights Spain’s intention to seek help and support of the Euro”. In fact, according to these same community sources during the meeting that has lasted nearly three hours, and figures have been considered a rescue that could reach 100,000 million euros, an amount which is well above what had speculated. However, the stakes ensure that clean once and for all Spanish banks, first, to restore confidence in Spain after and bring stability to the entire euro area, immersed in its worst crisis since the launch the euro.
Spanish Economy Minister Luis de Guindos, has called on the media in the Ministry of Economy at 19.30, which indicates that it has come to some agreement. The purpose of it, detailing the department, is to explain “the results of the Eurogroup meeting” and “actions on the recapitalization of the Spanish financial system.”
“The figure we are discussing now would be up to 100 000 million, but not yet closed “and is a cap, have stated the sources consulted by AFP. Reuters also agrees with these figures, more than double that manages the IMF, estimated at 40,000 million injection needed for Spanish banks . The managing director of this institution, France Christine Lagarde, is also participating in the teleconference.
The final amount, however, probably will not be known today and will be implemented once they know the results of two independent audits commissioned by the Spanish government. Thus, the figure will be decided “according to the results of needs analysis” of Spanish banks. In this respect, the Euro is expected to meet again in the near future to confirm the figure, while EU sources indicate that although the request for assistance is made this weekend, which is as safe, they add, the Government can wait a few days to provide a specific figure. At the end of the process, will the ECB and the European Commission have to quantify the aid will reach the Spanish banks.
Wars and Rumors of War
KILLING THE TRUTH: Syrian Rebels Set Trap for British Journalists
Source: Tony Cartalucci
While the New York Times publishes Goebbels-esque war propaganda pieces titled, “Assad, the Butcher,” presuming to know the details about an unconfirmed “massacre” the UN is just now in the beginning stages of investigating – a disturbing and very telling incident unfolded that is very much confirmed. British Channel 4′s Alex Thomson, one of the few Western journalists not only in Syria legally, but attempting to cover both sides of the conflict, was purposefully led by rebels into a trap designed to have him and his team killed by government troops.
Image: UK’s Channel 4 News’ Alex Thomson narrowly escaped a trap set for him and his team in Syria, by rebels hoping to use his death as propaganda. Ironically, it would have been Thomson’s own countrymen and colleagues, particularly BBC, who would have maximized the effect of the rebels’ insidious plot had they succeeded. Killing journalists and carrying out manufactured atrocities, then blaming it on a targeted government is a pastime for Western media houses.
“Set up to be shot in Syria’s no man’s land?” featured on Thomson’s personal Channel 4 blog describes a tale of violence on both sides – very uncharacteristic of Western and particularly British media coverage. While BBC was busy posting fake pictures for their one-sided Houla Massacre coverage, Thomson was busy trying to interview belligerents on both sides of the Syrian conflict.
Thomson’s narrative describes what appears to be a bifurcation between “rebel” forces. On one hand, there are organized fighters that appear to solely committed to fighting the Syrian Army. On the other hand, there appears to be a more insidious “third party” involved, a third party implicated by Thomson as having intentionally led him and his team into a deadly trap. This is a narrative that corroborates statements made by the Syrian government itself, as well as independent geopolitical analysts from around the world – that there exists a substantiation third party, consisting of foreign mercenaries and sectarian extremists carrying out the bulk of the violence and atrocities.
Thomson describes his ordeal after accompanying UN monitors out to “Free Syrian Army” held territory:
Israel’s officials have a message for anyone praising the CIA for its sophisticated cyber attack on Iran: It was our baby. The Stuxnet computer worm, described by David Sanger in The New York Times last week as an invention by the Bush administration, was actually developed by Mossad, according to Israeli officials speaking with Haaretz journalist Yossi Melman on condition of anonymity:
The Israeli officials actually told me a different version. They said that it was Israeli intelligence that began, a few years earlier, a cyberspace campaign to damage and slow down Iran’s nuclear intentions. And only later they managed to convince the USA to consider a joint operation — which, at the time, was unheard of.
Israel’s Unit 8200, a part of its military, had technical expertise that rivaled the N.S.A.’s, and the Israelis had deep intelligence about operations at Natanz that would be vital to making the cyberattack a success.
My Israeli sources understand the sensitivity and the timing of the issue and are not going to be dragged into a battle over taking credit. “We know that it is the presidential election season,” one Israeli added, ”and don’t want to spoil the party for President Obama and his officials, who shared in a twisted and manipulated way some of the behind-the-scenes secrets of the success of cyberwar.”
What can one say about people who continue to support war criminals among their elected representatives? It is easy to blame the presidents and the Congress and the media for endless war and rising body counts around the world. They are indeed responsible for promoting mass killing as an acceptable, indeed beneficial means of living among the world’s people.It is true that Americans have far less input into their government’s decisions than they seem to think. They play a very small role in choosing elected officials, including the president. The power of money means that rich people and corporations call the shots to a greater extent than citizens of a so-called democracy are willing to admit.
But the people do still have the right to their own opinions. We can proclaim what we do and do not like. When the president feeds a story to the New York Times which proclaims that he gladly accepts responsibility for killing people, he believes that said story will increase his support among voters.
That is what Barack Obama did last week. His advisers sat down with New York Times reporters in order to tell the world that he decides who will live and who will be blown to bits by drones in Afghanistan or Pakistan or Somalia. The Obama marketing juggernaut knows that the killer president image can only be helpful in a country so certain of its right to be violent.
The anniversary of his assassination of Osama bin Laden was celebrated and turned into an argument for a second Obama term in office. Nor was the gloating limited to the president and his campaign team. His supporters were also beside themselves as they made the case for the killer president, using his navy seal hit as one more reason to love Barack Obama.
Condemnation should not just be directed towards Barack Obama and his henchmen and women, but at the American people too. Americans love to make war and revel in their nation’s military superiority. Politicians surmise, correctly, that being on the side of war is a surer path to victory than working for peace.
To be sure, there is better fundraising to be had for the hawk than for the dove, but there is also a visceral level of support for invasion, occupation and drone strikes. The oldest and strongest form of propaganda in this country is the belief that white America has the right to dominate everyone else on the earth, and as president Obama functions as the whitest man in the country. The siren song of Manifest Destiny outlived the 19th century and is still alive now in the 21st. It has been called many things, anti-communism during the Cold War, and the war against terror now, but it all amounts to the same thing.
We are told to fear the communist, or militant Islam, or whatever the enemy du jour happens to be. The end result is the same from a people who are convinced of their own goodness and paradoxically their right to have their violent way in the world. It is never very difficult to get support for killing and maiming among people who think themselves morally superior.
If anything Americans are morally inferior to people in the rest of the world. Barack Obama was certain that news of his personal “kill list” would benefit his chances of being re-elected, and he was not wrong.
He solved the problems presented by Guantanamo by not taking any prisoners at all. He just kills people and any innocent bystander is labeled as a militant, all so that the president can look good and the people in his country can feel good. According to the well orchestrated story, the president even invokes theological theories of just war, as he pours over a “nominations” list of those marked for death.
These revelations did not cause outrage or inspire people to take to the streets. It was left to the usual suspects who are truly progressive and proudly leftist to point out the evil inherent in a president who thinks he should be judge, jury and executioner.
It seems that our president is a totally amoral psychopath, and the revelation of his condition has not hurt his popularity. Apparently the president governs psychopaths too, because too few of them will say or do anything to oppose his commitment to breaking the law, violating the Constitution, and the word of the god he claims to believe in.
The evil is not limited to 1600 Pennsylvania Avenue, but can be found on Main Street U.S.A. just as easily. Obama is giving most Americans exactly what they want, a world living in fear of them.
UN monitors smell ‘burnt flesh’ in Syria’s Qubayr
Published on Jun 8, 2012 by AlJazeeraEnglish
UN observers in Syria who went to the massacre village of Al-Qubayr said they saw blood on the walls and were hit by a “stench of burnt flesh” but could not confirm how many died.
While the government has denied responsibility, Martin Nesirky, a UN spokesman, said on Friday the observers saw armored vehicle tracks around the village and homes that were damaged by rockets, grenades and various weapons.
Al Jazeera’s Tarek Bazley reports
‘Pentagon sanitizes movies to make Americans warlike’
Published on Jun 9, 2012 by RussiaToday
Normally in the film making process, script changes are made all the time. But few realize it’s the Pentagon frequently calling the shots. RT talks to writer and former journalist for Daily Variety and The Hollywood Reporter, – David L. Robb. He shares his thoughts and sheds light on the approval process.
Articles of Interest
Suicides are surging among America’s troops, averaging nearly one a day this year – the fastest pace in the nation’s decade of war.
The 154 suicides for active-duty troops in the first 155 days of the year far outdistance the U.S. forces killed in action in Afghanistan – about 50 percent more – according to Pentagon statistics obtained by The Associated Press.
The numbers reflect a military burdened with wartime demands from Iraq and Afghanistan that have taken a greater toll than foreseen a decade ago. The military also is struggling with increased sexual assaults, alcohol abuse, domestic violence and other misbehavior.
Because suicides had leveled off in 2010 and 2011, this year’s upswing has caught some officials by surprise.
The reasons for the increase are not fully understood. Among explanations, studies have pointed to combat exposure, post-traumatic stress, misuse of prescription medications and personal financial problems. Army data suggest soldiers with multiple combat tours are at greater risk of committing suicide, although a substantial proportion of Army suicides are committed by soldiers who never deployed.
The unpopular war in Afghanistan is winding down with the last combat troops scheduled to leave at the end of 2014. But this year has seen record numbers of soldiers being killed by Afghan troops, and there also have been several scandals involving U.S. troop misconduct.
The 2012 active-duty suicide total of 154 through June 3 compares to 130 in the same period last year, an 18 percent increase. And it’s more than the 136.2 suicides that the Pentagon had projected for this period based on the trend from 2001-2011. This year’s January-May total is up 25 percent from two years ago, and it is 16 percent ahead of the pace for 2009, which ended with the highest yearly total thus far.
Suicide totals have exceeded U.S. combat deaths in Afghanistan in earlier periods, including for the full years 2008 and 2009.
The suicide pattern varies over the course of a year, but in each of the past five years the trend through May was a reliable predictor for the full year, according to a chart based on figures provided by the Armed Forces Medical Examiner.
The numbers are rising among the 1.4 million active-duty military personnel despite years of effort to encourage troops to seek help with mental health problems. Many in the military believe that going for help is seen as a sign of weakness and thus a potential threat to advancement.
Kim Ruocco, widow of Marine Maj. John Ruocco, a helicopter pilot who hanged himself in 2005 between Iraq deployments, said he was unable to bring himself to go for help.
“He was so afraid of how people would view him once he went for help,” she said in an interview at her home in suburban Boston. “He thought that people would think he was weak, that people would think he was just trying to get out of redeploying or trying to get out of service, or that he just couldn’t hack it – when, in reality, he was sick. He had suffered injury in combat and he had also suffered from depression and let it go untreated for years. And because of that, he’s dead today.”
Ruocco is currently director of suicide prevention programs for the military support organization Tragedy Assistance Programs, or TAPS. She joined the group after her husband’s suicide, and she organized its first program focused on support for families of suicide victims.
Jackie Garrick, head of a newly established Defense Suicide Prevention Office at the Pentagon, said in an interview Thursday that the suicide numbers this year are troubling.
“We are very concerned at this point that we are seeing a high number of suicides at a point in time where we were expecting to see a lower number of suicides,” she said, adding that the weak U.S. economy may be confounding preventive efforts even as the pace of military deployments eases.
Garrick said experts are still struggling to understand suicidal behavior.
“What makes one person become suicidal and another not is truly an unknown,” she said.
Dr. Stephen N. Xenakis, a retired Army brigadier general and a practicing psychiatrist, said the suicides reflect the level of tension as the U.S. eases out of Afghanistan though violence continues.
“It’s a sign in general of the stress the Army has been under over the 10 years of war,” he said in an interview. “We’ve seen before that these signs show up even more dramatically when the fighting seems to go down and the Army is returning to garrison.”
But Xenakis said he worries that many senior military officers do not grasp the nature of the suicide problem.
A glaring example of that became public when a senior Army general recently told soldiers considering suicide to “act like an adult.”
Maj. Gen. Dana Pittard, commander of the 1st Armored Division, last month retracted – but did not apologize for – a statement in his Army blog in January. He had written, “I have now come to the conclusion that suicide is an absolutely selfish act.” He also wrote, “”I am personally fed up with soldiers who are choosing to take their own lives so that others can clean up their mess. Be an adult, act like an adult, and deal with your real-life problems like the rest of us.” He did also counsel soldiers to seek help.
His remarks drew a public rebuke from the Army, which has the highest number of suicides and called his assertions “clearly wrong.” Last week the chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff, Army Gen. Martin Dempsey, said he disagrees with Pittard “in the strongest possible terms.”
The military services have set up confidential telephone hotlines, placed more mental health specialists on the battlefield, added training in stress management, invested more in research on mental health risk and taken other measures.
The Marines established a counseling service dubbed “DStress line,” a toll-free number that troubled Marines can call anonymously. They also can use a Marine website to chat online anonymously with a counselor.
The Marines arguably have had the most success recently in lowering their suicide numbers, which are up slightly this year but are roughly in line with levels of the past four years. The Army’s numbers also are up slightly. The Air Force has seen a spike, to 32 through June 3 compared to 23 at the same point last year. The Navy is slightly above its 10-year trend line but down a bit from 2011.
As part of its prevention strategy, the Navy has published a list of “truths” about suicide.
“Most suicidal people are not psychotic or insane,” it says. “They might be upset, grief-stricken, depressed or despairing.”
In a report published in January the Army said the true impact of its prevention programs is unknown.
“What is known is that all Army populations … are under increased stress after a decade of war,” it said, adding that if not for prevention efforts the Army’s suicide totals might have been as much as four times as high.
Marine Sgt. Maj. Bryan Battaglia, the senior enlisted adviser to the chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff, recently issued a video message to all military members in which he noted that suicides “are sadly on the rise.”
“From private to general, we shoulder an obligation to look and listen for signs and we stand ready to intervene and assist our follow service member or battle buddy in time of need,” Battaglia said.
The suicide numbers began surging in 2006. They soared in 2009 and then leveled off before climbing again this year. The statistics include only active-duty troops, not veterans who returned to civilian life after fighting in Iraq or Afghanistan. Nor does the Pentagon’s tally include non-mobilized National Guard or Reserve members.
The renewed surge in suicides has caught the attention of Defense Secretary Leon Panetta. Last month he sent an internal memo to the Pentagon’s top civilian and military leaders in which he called suicide “one of the most complex and urgent problems” facing the Defense Department, according to a copy provided to the AP.
Panetta touched on one of the most sensitive aspects of the problem: the stigma associated seeking help for mental distress. This is particularly acute in the military.
“We must continue to fight to eliminate the stigma from those with post-traumatic stress and other mental health issues,” Panetta wrote, adding that commanders “cannot tolerate any actions that belittle, haze, humiliate or ostracize any individual, especially those who require or are responsibly seeking professional services.”
AP broadcast correspondent Sagar Meghani contributed to this report.
Source: Associated Press
RFID CHIP UNLEASHED ON USA UTAH NEWS!!!!! MAY 29 2012
Published on May 29, 2012 by Hawkkey davis
On May 29 2012 the news in Utah aired this segment on the RFID chip. The government wants chip kids to get them to go to school. They say that it’s to bring revenue to the school district. People in Mexico are already using it on their kids beause of kidnappers. Meny people think that the tchnology is not a good idea. Proof that kids that are in school means more money for district.
MICROCHIPS FOR THE WORLD COMING SOON.
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