Vampires Are Real

Vampires Are Real

Smoking Mirrors – May 29, 2011

Dog Poet Transmitting…….

‘May your noses always be cold and wet’.

It is not hard to understand. The point is there and everything else follows. You only have to look at this and you can find it anywhere you go; fundamentally or superficially, in the world at large. The march of the corporations and bankers who drive the cattle (that be you) is pushing to profit. Wi-Fi laptopping in Starbucks, comes from quarter inch, permanent dents in the heads of black women in The Congo, hauling baskets of strange minerals, that make your computer games and cellphones work. I could list from West Papua and back again. I could talk about millionaire sport’s figures, that live in Gold Coast communities, from Santa Monica to Marbella. I could show you the crumbling construction sites along the Spanish coast, that got made and left unmade, with inferior materials, or go to Trump licensing, Las Vegas style enclaves, in Florida that don’t get built and deposits don’t get returned.

You can look at all the Monsanto (My Satan), bio-engineered food industries that morph into fuel industries and then travel to soybean billionaires in Brazil again. You can look at all the munching and crunching, of a select few, who feed off of the industry and pain of labor imported from places, where they can’t grow food and then they turn them into mercenaries, who murder the people, who have the dents in their heads, from the pressure of the ropes on their foreheads, from bringing the Game Boy minerals, to the computers that operate at the Starbucks, that fuel the society of the moment, which you can see on your TV and… Lady Gaga will be doing the sound track, while thrusting her unwholesome, leather strapped- Madonna wannabe- “it’s the same thing only different”,’ new and improved’ and so on and so forth into your face… and you can get the picture or maybe you don’t get the picture because of all the smoke and mirrors and because you want your shit packaged and cheap.

Wars are being fought over all of these things, including the land people live on, who were there before the people who never were there to begin with, came in and made Chop Suey out of them and sold them in the flesh markets of Bangkok and Shanghai, metaphorically speaking; different people, same Hell. Well… so it goes.

Maybe you give a shit and maybe you don’t. Maybe you see where you can leverage a condition of destruction into commercial advantage and maybe you think; “why not start a conflict here, or there and then sell them the weapons and make a movie about it and also steal everything they have by loaning them money, against the equity of their existence? Yeah, it is like that. That is what is going on and that is why the police state thing is happening and why everything is all fucked up. It’s all fucked up because of the way some people operate, within a system that is supposed to function. Well… if it functions long enough for you to make a profit off of it, then the ends justifies the means and so on and so on. What it all comes down to is something like this.

In a time of darkness and this surely qualifies, the best thing to do is to be out of the line of fire, because the process is completely corrupt and being manipulated by people who don’t care, one way or the other, what happens to anyone else.

You look at people like Reid in Nevada and McConnell in Kentucky; Pelosi in San Francisco, helping her husband stock the larder and Sarkozy driving people off the beach when he wants to swim. You look at Blair, in charge of The Middle East, as if he were the guy to fix the situation and you look back and you look back and all you see are vampires feasting on the battlefields. You see ghouls and cannibals, having lunch in Corfu and there’s no holocaust like the every day holocaust, of the millions turned into food, for those who set themselves up as the victims in the first place.

You shouldn’t be allowed to operate a vehicle if you’re drunk. Some of us can be drunk and know better, because we’re not double and triple drunk. Drunk is one thing. You figure maybe you should pay more attention and I’m living proof that one can make that happen in bad times, when you didn’t have enough self control to stop drinking but at least you knew you were impaired and you were cautious. I am that kind of a guy and ever so grateful that I don’t do it anymore. I’m even more grateful that I’m not extra drunk on my own power and influence so that it doesn’t matter what I do because, “don’t you know who I am”?

Well evil has had its day and now evil is trying to get out of Dodge or stay in Dodge and hope that everyone else will be drunk enough to let that continue until evil can dry out a little and get its shit together but that’s not how it works for evil. Evil isn’t smart; not really smart, or it wouldn’t be evil in the first place. There are too many people who aren’t drunk, or who used to be drunk and are now even more of a problem because of this apocalypse thing and these people work for you, serve you, see you and don’t like you. They have the weapons that you gave them to protect you but you aren’t protecting them. I suppose we could just go back to Spain again or run the whole route we just ran earlier and just wait for Donald Trump’s hair to catch on fire.

Systems come and go and they all operate on the foundation of Nature. When systems go bad, which they tend to do, because of the way that vampires operate, Nature gets pissed off. Sometimes you can harness Nature and you can make her your bitch but the thing is you have created a bitch, when you could have made something else and now you have to deal with that and don’t get me started on how “Hell has no fury like a woman scorned”. I stay very wide of that sort of thing, believe me. I have seen the power. You just keep doing what you are doing and see what happens.

The very thing you are calling out to for help, is the monster you have turned it into. I think that might be why Kali looks like she does. She was my girlfriend for awhile but we parted amicably and I got to be with one of her fairer sisters, Saraswati. That’s working out well.

It could all function a lot better. Of course some of us should be richer than others. I have no problem with that but when you try to squeeze everything out of the process, the process will no longer function. You always think you have some kind of time delay and I guess you do but sooner or later the note comes due. You can only abuse people so much. What’s wrong with you? It is easy enough to do with less than you have, in order to maintain order but you just have to have it all and bring in the FUBAR.

I’m content with very little. There’s all this open space and yet, we have to be crowded together to maximize the profit. I don’t understand the need to eat lunch twice. I don’t eat lunch to begin with. I don’t eat breakfast even. I get that one meal a day and that’s enough for me, maybe a little something else now and again but I don’t live to eat. You do and that is going to eat you.

Throwing Blankfein under the bus, isn’t going to help, as much as it might be appreciated. I can only hope they will get a clue. I don’t really understand them; I do understand them but I guess I don’t see the payoff. Maybe it’s just a matter of taste. It could be the difference between msg AND corrosive salt potato chips and hand cut potato fries. Is it what we enjoy? It’s got something to do with values and integrity is in there too, that is also a matter of preference. I think of that Don Henley song, The Last Resort. Why has it got to be so hard to do the right thing?

I’m not a tool and die man. I’m a dreamer. I envision things but I’m not a technical guy. I do not understand how things get like they are but I suspect it’s all about having more than you need and some kind of satanic thing about things being fucked up, when they don’t have to be. The better way is always there, if people don’t want too much at the expense of others. It’s possible to do all kinds of things, as long as you’re not greedy. I’m willingly to work and use my ingenuity to take care of a lot more people than myself. I don’t care if people get something for free, in the process of showing them how to make it. I don’t want most of what these people want to sell me and I don’t think you do either. It doesn’t have to be all fucked up but it is and that’s a crying shame.

I figure the only thing to do is to try to be an example of what we could be if we didn’t want more than our share. I can do with less but that doesn’t seem to be the program. So… other forces come into the mix and you can’t wallow in luxury at the expense of what is indigenous. Sooner or later you are going to piss them off and the least of us has a better friend in the end, if we want that friend. We will surely see how it goes and that’s waiting in the wings. Some kind of judgment is coming and time is running out.

End Transmission…….

Radio show tonight at 7:30 Central Time or download it later.

Spread Your Wings

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Ahmadinejad mulled resignation over row: reports

AFP – May 29, 2011

Iran’s President Mahmoud Ahmadinejad considered resigning after supreme leader Ayatollah Ali Khamenei vetoed a minister’s sacking, but ultimately decided not to, parliament’s deputy speaker said Sunday.

“At one stage the president went as far as (considering) to resign, but he calculated that he should continue his work,” Mohammad Reza Bahonar, the first deputy speaker of conservative-dominated parliament, was quoted as saying.

Ahmadinejad withdrew from public life for 10 days in late April in protest after Khamenei blocked his decision to dismiss Intelligence Minister Heydar Moslehi.

The showdown triggered a political crisis within the conservative camp in the Iranian political hierarchy, with the ultra-religious conservatives denouncing Ahmadinejad’s decision as a threat to the regime and urging him to toe the line.

“The supreme leader wants the government to continue its work to the end of its term with serenity and on a natural course,” Bahonar added referring to the end of Ahamdinejad’s tenure in August 2013.

Ahmadinejad cannot run for the next presidential election set for June 2013 as the Islamic republic constitution prohibits more than two successive terms for presidents.

“It is not in the national interests of the country for the government to be weakened… but it is necessary for the government to gradually distance itself from the deviant current,” said Bahonar.

He was referring to Ahmadinejad’s staff, especially his chief of staff Esfandiar Rahim Mashaie, who the ultra-conservatives accuse of wanting to undermine the Islamic regime.

Ultra-conservatives blame the political crisis on Mashaie, who they say is too liberal, nationalistic and has too much influence on Ahmadinejad.

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The Hidden Message in Pixar’s Films

Vigilant Citizen – May 26, 2011

Here’s an interesting article on the underlying philosophical messages found in various Pixar movies. The author of the article discovered a recurring transhumanist theme in most of the company’s features along with a specific view on the definition of being “human”. Although the author concludes by saying: “Through Pixar, we have opened ourselves to a better future”, I’ll be a little less enthusiastic and conclude by saying “Through Pixar, we have programmed ourselves to a specific vision of the future”. Here’s the article from Discover Magazine.

I love Pixar. Who doesn’t? The stories are magnificently crafted, the characters are rich, hilarious, and unique, and the images are lovingly rendered. Without fail, John Ratzenberger’s iconic voice makes a cameo in some boisterous character. Even if you haven’t seen every film they’ve made (I refuse to watch Cars or its preposterous sequel), there is a consistency and quality to Pixar’s productions that is hard to deny.

Popular culture is often dismissed as empty “popcorn” fare. Animated films find themselves doubly-dismissed as “for the kids” and therefore nothing to take too seriously. Pixar has shattered those expectations by producing commercially successful cinematic art about the fishes in our fish tanks and the bugs in our backyards. Pixar films contain a complex, nuanced, philosophical and political essence that, when viewed across the company’s complete corpus, begins to emerge with some clarity.

Buried within that constant  and complex goodness is a hidden message.

Now, this is not your standard “Disney movies hide double-entendres and sex imagery in every film” hidden message. “So,” you ask, incredulous, “What could one of the most beloved and respected teams of filmmakers in our generation possibly be hiding from us?” Before you dismiss my claim, consider what is at stake. Hundreds of millions of people have watched Pixar films. Many of those watchers are children who are forming their understanding of the world. The way in which an entire generation sees life and reality is being shaped, in part, by Pixar.

What if I told you they were preparing us for the future? What if I told you Pixar’s films will affect how we define the rights of millions, perhaps billions, in the coming century? Only by analyzing the collection as a whole can we see the subliminal concept being drilled into our collective mind. I have uncovered the skeleton key deciphering the hidden message contained within the Pixar canon. Let’s unlock it.

Before we begin, I ask you to watch the video below. Leandro Copperfield stitched together this seven minute tribute to “The Beauty of Pixar.” Full screen. HD. I dare you to not be moved.

People love these films. They are a part of our lives and of our culture. Pixar has artfully built a universe of beloved critters and beings that populate our popular consciousness. The analysis that follows is in the spirit of reverence and respect for the great contribution Pixar has made to our world.

To understand Pixar films, one must first to go back to Disney before Toy Story was released – to be precise, The Lion King. On top of being my favorite Shakespeare adaptation, The Lion King is the only Disney film to date with zero references to the existence of human beings. Disney and Pixar rarely have humans as the sole intelligent entities in their movies. Excluding plots requiring magic, non-human characters in Disney films are either anthropomorphous animals (e.g. walking upright, wearing clothes, drinkin’ out of cups) that take the place of humans (e.g. Robin Hood or The Rescuers) or are animals with a preternatural awareness of and ability to interact with feral human beings (e.g. The Jungle Book or Tarzan). The Lion King stands out in that the universe is animal only. There is no trash on the Serengeti, no airplanes flying over, no animals in hats or walking unnaturally on hind legs. You can’t even date when the story takes place, because there are no human references from which to calculate an approximation. Save for the fact that Zazu knows “I’ve Got a Lovely Bunch of Coconuts,” there is no evidence that the characters within The Lion King even know humans exist.

The Lion King gives us a clean slate. We know what a non-human world looks like. Now we can tackle how Pixar handles people.

The relationship between humans and the non-human characters is critical to understanding Pixar’s movies. There are certain rules in Pixar movies that make things far more interesting than the average Disney fairy tale. The first is that there is no magic. No problems are caused or fixed by the wave of a wand. Second, every Pixar film happens in the world of human beings (see why I excluded Cars? It’s ridiculous and out of character for Pixar). Even in films like a A Bug’s Life and Finding Nemo, in which humans only exist as backdrops for the action, humanity’s presence in the story is essential. The first two rules are pretty direct: the universe Pixar’s characters inhabit is non-magical and co-inhabited by humans.

The third rule is that at least one main character is an intelligent being that isn’t a human. This rule is a bit complex, so let’s flesh it out. There are two types human roles in Pixar films. The first is Human as Villain. In films like the Toy Story 1, 2, & 3, A Bug’s Life, and Finding Nemo, the protagonists are all non-human. Ancillary characters like Sid, the Collector, and Darla are not main characters. A more accurate description would be that they are pieces of the environment and, on occasion, playing the role of supporting antagonist. The second type of Pixar film is Human as Partner. In these films, the main character befriends a human being as part of the hero’s journey: Remy, Colette, and Linguini; WALL-E, EVE, Mary and John; Sully, Mike, and Boo; Russell, Carl, Kevin and Dug. These are the heroic teams of their respective films.

In each Pixar film, at least one member of the team is human and at least one member is not human but possesses human levels of intelligence.

You can see where I’m going here. Particularly in WALL•E,Ratatouille and Up! there is no ambiguity about the reality of intelligence in the non-human characters. Each Pixar film asks us to accept one deviation from our reality. While it seems like the deviation is different in every case (e.g. monsters are real, robots can fall in love, fish have a sense of family, Kevin is a girl, a rat can cook), the simple fact is that Pixar only asks us to accept one idea over and over and over again:

Non-humans are sentient beings. That is the central difference between Pixar’s universe and our current reality.

That idea alone would suffice to show that Pixar films are all but propaganda for the concept of non-human personhood. But that is where the hidden message begins.

What makes these films so astonishing and the message so powerful is the story arc of the Human as Partner narrative. The story begins with a non-human living among a familiar setting. Be it WALL-E alone among the garbage, Remy with his massive extended family, or Sully and Mike Wazowski on their way to work, we are introduced to the hero in relative normalcy. Yet each of these characters deviate from their fellow non-humans. Remy wants to cook. WALL-E falls in love. In each case, the deviant non-human is ostracized. Dug is laughed at for his ineptitude and Sully and Mike are banished to live with the  Agreeable Snowman.

In being ostracized, however, the non-human encounters a human. Remy, lost in the kitchen, meets Linguini. Kevin and Dug both partner up with Carl and Russell. The deviant behavior acts as a catalyst for the first interaction. Furthermore, the human is also deviant. Boo is not afraid of monsters. John and Mary (the two people who help WALL-E and EVE) get out of their hover chairs and look away from the screens. Carl escapes the old folks home with a balloon-house airship. A team is formed when the mutual outsiders recognize a shared sense of purpose. Human and non-human rebels alike seek out each other. In combining efforts, however, the team doubles their opposition, with the non-human and human normative majorities rejecting and condemning their behavior. Remy is criticized by his father and alienates his friends while Linguini loses the respect of the entire kitchen and is at risk of having the restaurant closed for health violations. There is a high cost for non-conformity.

The new is seen as dangerous and therefore feared. Pixar’s Human as Partner films emphasize that should a non-human intelligence arise, be it a rat or a robot or a monstrous alien, there will be no welcoming with arms wide open from either side.

Victory in the battle for the rights and respect from both groups will come from an act of exemplary personhood and humaneness by those who dare to break ranks with their kind. Thus, the Human as Partner story arc ends with the capitulation of those who refused to recognize the personhood of the non-human and a huge reward coming to those who accepted the non-humans as fellow persons. In Monsters Inc. Mike and Sully discover that laughter yields far more energy than screams. In Ratatouille Anton Ego has an epiphany and gives one of my favorite speeches of all time in response to a Proustian flashback he experiences after eating Remy’s cooking. In WALL•E none less than the human race is saved from the brink of self-induced-extinction. In short, the benefits for humanity are tremendous in every case where non-human persons are treated with respect.

There is one Pixar film that does not fit either the Humans as Villains or Humans as Partner structure: The Incredibles. Instead of non-human protagonists, we are treated to super-human protagonists and antagonists. Yet the struggle from outcast to redeemer is the same, only this time, it is because the super-humans come together as a family. What enables the Incredible family to succeed is not that they are superhuman but that they are humane; that they love, support, and protect one another. As a result, the society that once feared and banished them sees the supers not as Others, but has fellow members of humanity.

Taken together as a whole narrative, the Pixar canon diagrams what will likely this century’s main rights battle – the rights of personhood – in three stages.

First are the Humans as Villain stories, in which the non-humans discover and develop personhood. I mean, Buzz Lightyear’s character arc is about his becoming self-aware as a toy. These films represent nascent personhood among non-human entities. For the viewer, we begin to see how some animals and items we see as mindless may have inner lives of which we are unaware.

Second are the Humans as Partners stories, in which exceptional non-humans and exceptional humans share a moment of mutual recognition of personhood. The moment when Linguini realizes Remy is answering him is second only to the moment when Remy shows Ego around the kitchen – such beautiful transformations of the Other into the self. These films represent the first forays of non-human persons into seeking parity with human beings.

Third, and finally, there is The Incredibles, which turns the personhood equation on its head. Instead of portraying the struggle for non-humans to be accepted as human, The Incredibles shows how human enhancement, going beyond the human norm, will trigger equally strong reactions of revulsion and otherization. The message, however, is that the human traits we value have nothing to do with our physical powers but are instead based in our moral and emotional bonds. Beneficence and courage require far more humanity than raw might. The Incredibles teaches a striking lesson: human enhancement does not make you inhuman – the choices you make and the way you treat others determines how human you really are.

Pixar has given those who would fight for personhood the narratives necessary to convince the world that non-humans that display characteristics of a person deserve the rights of a person. For every category there is a character: uplifted animals (Dug), naturally intelligent species (Remy and Kevin), A.I robots (WALL-E, EVE), and alien/monsters (Sully & Mike). Then there is the Incredible family, transhumans with superpowers. Through the films, these otherwise strange entities become  unmistakably familiar, so clearly akin to us.

The message hidden inside Pixar’s magnificent films is this: humanity does not have a monopoly on personhood. In whatever form non- or super-human intelligence takes, it will need brave souls on both sides to defend what is right. If we can live up to this burden, humanity and the world we live in will be better for it.

An entire generation has been reared with the subconscious seeds of these ideas planted down deep. As history moves forward and technology with it, these issues will no longer be the imaginings of films and fiction, but of politics and policy. But Pixar has settled the personhood debate before it arrives. By watching our favorite films, we have been taught that being human is not the same as being a person. We have been shown that new persons and forms of personhood can come from anywhere. Through Pixar, we have opened ourselves to a better future.

** Note: I DID NOT WRITE THIS ARTICLE, it is from Discover Magazine.

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Taliban Injure Nato General, Kill Police Chief

News Brief – May 29, 2011

A suicide bomb attack has left a Nato general severely injured and killed a police chief in northern Afghanistan.

Two German soldiers and at least two other senior Afghan officials were reported to have died in the attack. Several others were injured.

Major General Markus Kneip, commander of Nato forces in northern Afghanistan, received wounds that were severe but not life-threatening. He is one of the few high-ranking international military officers to have become casualties in Afghanistan since the conflict there began in 2001.

The Afghan police chief killed in the attack was General Mohammed Daoud Daoud, a controversial figure who had served as deputy minister of the interior for narcotics before being posted as police chief in the north.

Daoud had been bodyguard for the guerrilla leader Ahmed Shah Massoud who was killed by suicide bombers in 2001.

The deputy director of the local council in the province of Takhar, where the attack took place, Mujeebullah Rahman, said that it happened at around 4pm when a meeting called to discuss local security operations broke up.

“The bomber was waiting in the corridor, wearing the uniform of an Afghan policeman,” Rahman said, raising the possibility that local security forces had been infiltrated by the Taliban.

The attack came during a bloody 48 hours in which 11 international servicemen were killed in the south of the country.

Forty-four Nato soldiers have been killed so far this month, which is traditionally the start of the summer offensive for the Taliban.

Nearly 200 soldiers have been killed so far this year. The latest deaths include two British Royal Marines who were killed when a hidden explosive device was triggered near their patrol on Friday.

Many of the recent Taliban attack seem aimed at scoring propaganda points. These have included a mass break-out of captured Taliban fighters from a prison and an attack on the ministry of defence in Kabul earlier this year.

Targeting high-profile figures has long been an aim of the insurgents who recognise that a single strike can have a major value in the propaganda war, particularly overseas.

Sesame Street’s pinko puppets brainwash our kids

Guy Adams – The Independent May 29, 2011

The TV series Friends undermined family values; Sesame Street taught ethnic minorities about civil disobedience; Happy Days had a subtle anti-Vietnam subtext; and the 1980s cop show MacGyver tried to persuade pistol-packing Americans that guns are bad. That, at least, is the considered opinion of Ben Shapiro, an investigative author and right-wing columnist who will publish a detailed exposé tomorrow telling how Hollywood producers, writers and actors have been secretly using TV to promote what he calls a “radical” left-leaning political agenda.

Shapiro’s book, Primetime Propaganda runs to 416 pages and revolves around comments by 70-odd industry heavyweights who he approached for interviews. The book promises to “profile the biggest names in showbusiness over the past 50 years” and includes a series of “gotcha” moments, in which the architects of the best-watched TV shows of modern times tell how they tried to use the medium of broadcasting to, as Shapiro puts it, “shape America in their own leftist image”.

“I was shocked by the openness of the Hollywood crowd when it came to admitting anti-conservative discrimination inside the industry,” Shapiro told The Independent on Sunday. “They weren’t ashamed of it. In fact, some were actually proud of it.”

The book’s contents will only add weight to allegations – often aired by conservative Americans – that Hollywood is the exclusive domain of leftie propagandists. Earlier this year, Republicans called for funding cuts to the public broadcaster NPR after one of its executives was secretly taped calling supporters of the Tea Party “racist”.

Among Shapiro’s most revelatory interviewees is Marta Kauffman, the co-creator of Friends, who recalls how she hired a “bunch of liberals” to run the programme to “put out there what we believe”. In 1999, she admitted casting the actress sister of Newt Gingrich, the prominent Republican, to play a preacher at a lesbian wedding because she wanted to annoy conservatives.

“When we did the lesbian wedding, we knew there was going to be some flack,” said Kauffman. “I have to say, when we cast Candice Gingrich as the minister of that wedding, there was a bit of a ‘fuck you’ in it to the right-wing, directly.”

Elsewhere in the book, Vin DiBona, the producer of MacGyver, agrees that Hollywood has a liberal bias, saying “I’m happy about it, actually.” The cult cop show advanced an anti-gun agenda, he added. “That was the whole premise of the programme, that MacGuyver used his brain power and skill and science, and solved all the difficulties through ingenuity. No Guns, no knives.”

Far from being just a comedy about military camaraderie, MASH meanwhile had a pacifist agenda, the show’s co-creator and director Gene Reynolds told Shapiro, who said: “We wanted to point out the wastefulness of war.”

And, with regard to Happy Days, writer Bill Bickley said he “had a whole subtext” attacking the Vietnam War. “If you really look for it, you can find it.”

Shapiro is relatively well known among the conservative commentariat, but believes he was able to persuade so many interviewees to reveal more than was perhaps sensible because they assumed he was a fellow liberal.

“There was a certain amount of stereotyping on their part in granting the interview,” he said. “Many probably assumed that with a name like Shapiro and a Harvard Law credential, there was no need to Google me: I would have to be a leftist. In Hollywood, talking to a Jew with a Harvard Law baseball cap is like talking to someone wearing an Obama pin.”

The book, published by Rupert Murdoch’s HarperCollins is perhaps at its most condemnatory whenaccusing the creators of Sesame Street of attempting to brainwash young children. It quotes Mike Dann, one of the show’s founding executives, saying it “was not made for the sophisticated or the middle class”.

Early episodes featured the character Grover breaking bread with a hippie. Oscar, who lived in a rubbish bin, was supposed to address “conflicts arising from racial and ethnic diversity”.

“Sesame Street tried to tackle divorce, tackled ‘peaceful conflict resolution’ in the aftermath of 9/11 and had [gay actor] Neil Patrick Harris on the show playing the subtly-named ‘fairy shoeperson’,” notes Shapiro.

As to whether there may be a touch of McCarthy-esque paranoia about his belief that film-makers are planting the seed of socialism in the bosom of America, he adds: “It’s not paranoid to speak the truth. Hollywoodites admit openly to messaging their product, and to their scorn for conservative Americans. I’m just reporting what they told me.”

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Big Pharma attempting to corner the market on medical marijuana

Mike Adams – Natural News May 29, 2011

As DEA raids and IRS harassment continue on state-approved medical marijuana, Big Pharma eyes the profitability of cannabis and prepares to muscle in, using its lobbyists and government connections to ensure a monopoly on legal sales of the drug.

In early April of 2011, two drug manufacturing giants, G.W. Pharmaceuticals and Novartis, announced they had formed an alliance to license and market GW’s Sativex, a liquid cannabis drug. The drug is already available in Great Britain, as well as Canada and Spain. The licensing agreement with Novartis will enable sales to expand into markets in Africa, Asia and the Middle East. FDA Phase III trials are still being organized for Otsuka, GW’s partner for licensing Sativex for the US market.

Unlike other cannaboids produced for recreational or medicinal use, Sativex is not a synthetic but an actual extract of the cannabis plant. It therefore lacks the side-effects of the synthetic drugs which merely attempt to replicate cannabis. Patients, primarily people diagnosed with MS or cancer, spray Sativex beneath their tongues.

GW claims that Sativex is formulated to provide the same health benefits that medical marijuana offers but without that drug’s high. GW says that Sativex balances the psychoactive agent THC with cannabidiol (CBD), the chemical believed to be the source of medical marijuana’s anti-nausea and cancer-cell-killing effects, in such a way as to eliminate any of the sensations associated with recreational marijuana. However, cannabis expert Dr. Lester Grinspoon, professor emeritus of psychiatry at Harvard Medical School, points out that the issue of whether Sativex produces marijuana high depends on the size of the dosage.

One of GW’s allies in its attempt to replace state-legalized whole-plant medical marijuana with its own chemical extract is Dr. Andrea Barthwell whose career includes consulting for GW, as well as stints as deputy drug czar under President George W. Bush and as president of the American Society for Addiction Medicine. Barthwell frames Big Pharma cannabis as best way to bring marijuana into medical usage: “The safety and advisability of any prescriptive medicine should depend on years of careful scientific scrutiny, not whims at the ballot box by individuals who lack the qualifications to make such decisions. Allowing cannabis to circumvent FDA approval sets a dangerous precedent and puts us on a slippery slope.”

Big Pharma’s big contributions to many legislators means they have many elected officials willing to see things the drug companies’ way on this, as on many other issues. Even legislators known to take a strong states’ right stance on other issues, such as offshore drilling, somehow find themselves standing up for federal oversight on this topic. For example, Sen. Richard Burr (R-N.C.), who holds the dubious distinction of the being the member of Congress who has accepted the largest amount from pharmaceutical firms, has taken a stance against state legalization of marijuana.

If you have a politician in your state who speaks out against medical marijuana, you may want to look into his/her ties to Big Pharma. As the American Independent observes, the pharmaceutical giants’ strategy as regards marijuana seems to be “demonize it, prosecute it, shut it down, then grab the market.” Let your friends and family know that many of those who fight against medical marijuana are not, as they may prefer to present themselves, taking a pro-family stance against drug addiction, but shills for multinational drug corporations who want to keep all drug profits in their coffers.

The idea that a drug can be denounced as evil in one context but hailed as a medical miracle if sold within the pharmaceutical system is nothing new. Big Pharma’s magic cure pills for ADHD bear a suspicious chemical resemblance to speed.

As consumer health advocate and critic of federal drug policy Mike Adams has pointed out elsewhere in NaturalNews (http://www.naturalnews.com/021501_m…), this double standard, with multinational corporations valued above the health of private citizens, has a pernicious effect on our culture “While dangerous prescription drugs are killing a hundred thousand Americans each year, the DEA does nothing. But when herb smokers light up in private, they are branded criminals and subject to a form of tyranny and oppression that should never be tolerated in a free society.”

Sources for this article include:
http://americanindependent.com/1794…
http://www.rawstory.com/rs/2011/04/…
http://www.nytimes.com/2011/05/08/u…
http://www.naturalnews.com/021501_m…

Source

Iran Angling for Helicopters With Nuke Capability

William Chedsey – Newsmax May 27, 2011

The arrest on Thursday of five Spanish businessmen and three Iranians allegedly planning to smuggle into Iran military helicopters formerly owned by Israel sparks concerns over the possible use of nuclear-armed cruise missiles by Tehran’s Islamist regime.

Some nine U.S.-manufactured Bell 212 helicopters were seized in Madrid and Barcelona, according to Spain’s interior ministry. The sale of such vehicles to Iran violates the United Nations’ arms embargo against Tehran, whose nuclear program is believed to be geared toward producing atomic bombs.

Five years ago, Iran successfully test-fired in the Persian Gulf its “Noor” long-range cruise missile, based on China’s C-802 anti-ship cruise design. The launch platform utilized in the April 2006 test was believed to be a Russian Mil-17 helicopter.

The Noor has a range of 200 kilometers, reportedly with no need of an over-the-horizon targeting system. Its velocity is twice the speed of sound, it travels just a few yards above water, and it is close to undetectable by radar. The Noor’s single-shot kill probability has been estimated at nearly 98 percent.

Israel’s Delilah cruise missile, with a range of 250 kilometers and which can be fitted with a variety of warheads, can similarly be launched from Israel’s U.S.-made Sikorsky helicopters.

The Jerusalem Post reports that Israel had used the Bell-212 military transports until the 1990s when it purchased Sikorskys as replacements.

Hezbollah guerrillas in 2006 attacked an Israeli military ship with Iranian-made Noor missiles fired from the Lebanese shore. The terrorist group is believed to possess dozens of Noor cruise missiles.

The use of nuclear devices by an Islamist terrorist group is one of the chief fears of Iran, a terrorist client state, becoming a nuclear power.
A year ago it was revealed in an Israeli multinational ballistic missile defense conference that Tehran had improved a Ukrainian-supplied Russian KH-55 nuclear-capable cruise missile, about a dozen of which Iran apparently covertly received between 1999 and 2001.

As Al-Jazeera reported last year, “This means that Iran has had approximately 10 years to reverse engineer and improve upon” the KH-55.

Iranian Defense Minister Ahmad Vahidi about a year ago announced production of the new highly-accurate, radar-evading Nasr-1 anti-ship cruise missile. In late 2009, Iran tested its two-stage, solid-propellant, surface-to-surface Sejil-2 missile, with a 1,200-mile range capable of reaching Israel.

The Israeli defense ministry reportedly sold the Bell choppers, after years of Israeli air force use, to a Spanish businessman who intended to sell them for use in fire-fighting within Spain.

When the copters were judged unsuitable for such use, he apparently turned to Iran.

For any country other than Iran, helicopters would be considered to be of little danger. For a regime doggedly pursuing both nuclear capabilities and missile development, however, another model of military helicopter to be used as a missile launch test platform could be the last piece of the puzzle leading to successful atomic aggression.

Source 

Emerald Tablet and Times of Transformation

Visible Origami – May 28, 2011

Dog Poet Transmitting…….

‘May your noses always be cold and wet and may you know where to step’.

The more I move through this world, outwardly and inwardly, the more I fundamentally do not know. I have a general idea about everything and specific understandings about things I personally encounter and all of this comes up against some sort of code that I have, which measures my willingness or reluctance to enter into it. The code is a barrier of protection, for what might be called the integrity of my system. There are things I will do and things I will not do. Yes and no are wardens at the gates and then, there are operating permissions.

It is kind of like, well, you can go in there but you can only do this and that and this door leads to that corridor, which leads to that stairwell, which takes you to the different levels of what is possible in the complex of that activity. You could look at it like sex, because everything, including technology, is based on it. The same thing that cools things down, heats them up, after a different manner. Everything is adapted to the human body because that is the operator of the systems and sequencings. I get all of this theoretically but I’m not a tool and die man. I look at Ramana Maharshi as a tool and die man and Paramahansa Yogananda as the other side of the brain. One could say that Sri Yuketeswar looks like a tool and tie man and maybe that has something to do with lineage and traditions. You’re free to follow those back to the source.

People make noise about the caste system in India. England has a caste system just as pronounced. There is never a time when there isn’t a caste system because reincarnation is a fact. It doesn’t matter to me what people believe on that score; what is, is. You want to debate about it, go find someone who does that kind of thing. Argument is an indication of insecurity. You either know something or you don’t. Generally, I don’t. I have an idea here and there and I know that certain moves will bring predictable results; otherwise I couldn’t even prepare my tea in the morning.

There’s that complexity that comes in according to disposition. Some people like cats and some people like dogs and some like both and some don’t like either and so on. I am a cat in some ways; taken in a street talk understanding and so I like dogs, while also having a lot of the nature of dogs, as it tends to be refined into human expression, given that I believe in loyalty and appreciate love and those qualities one can associate with creatures that come into the mix. Snakes also would have to be a consideration. I am neither attracted to, nor generally afraid of them. They have their business and I have mine. I only mention this in relation to types of phobia. Some creatures disturb us more than others. Snakes don’t bother me that way. This can be interesting stuff but it has more to do with the personalities that get up to the right and left brain activities of this world and let us not forget monkeys. The monkey is your mind, as the dog is your desire and there are all sorts of things going on in these worlds that have been going on for endless time.

Birds surely play a part and there are siddhis that yogi’s get, which allow them to understand and communicate with The Devic Realm, where animals come from. All you would ever need to want to know about all of that can be found in the Alice Bailey editions of Pantanjali. It’s all right there; this is your real tool and dies operation. That’s your blueprint if you want to know how it works and how to work it. It will cost you time and effort and possibly get you into a whole lot of trouble but it is there. Serious students know what I am talking about. I’ve looked into the mechanisms of the west on that account; what is called the occult. It’s not for me, though I’ve done some traveling in both directions, I’m a piker and wish to remain so. Unfortunately… things get given to you anyway and you need to watch out for that because the immensity of power is immense. Look at the world and note what I am saying. I wouldn’t want what most of them are up to and I have access to it, by the way, so, let us think well of ourselves and those who seek a less traveled venue, to the exclusion of god only knows what and you can put an exclamation point on that.

Let’s be clear about something. The world is run by magic and magical lodges are behind what goes down out here. From politics to Hollywood, it’s the same thing and all those religions that superimpose themselves on natural planetary movements of solstices and equinoxes and the varieties of Wicca and what not, are all operational. There are all sorts of orders. An intelligent inquirer will memorize The Emerald Tablet of Hermes Trismegistus; like the Witter Bynner translation of The Way of Life, it’s a code book for eternity. You need nothing more actually, but people have their preferences about the forms their moralities come in and the glamour they like to attach to the legends and allegories upon which life is based and which life acts out around you all the time. Shakespeare did this and it shouldn’t be a surprise that his persona is a mystery. Who would imagine that his daughter would be illiterate?

Everything you want to know is there to be known but you need to be well aware that there are all sorts of things you should not know because hardly anyone is ready for it. Some of us have these things handed to us, simply as a result of progress on the road of love in the search for truth and the sacrifices made thereof. It takes a truly unique individual to understand that all of those things offered- which are very real- are not desirable. They may be very useful here and there but.. heh heh. I know what I’m talking about in this one regard. Everyone who walks this road seeking the ability to do something to change the world, winds up on that mountain with all the cities of the world laid out before them as something to be had, according to tales you have read, sooner or later. Persist and see what I mean.

I have often mentioned that all you have to do is go somewhere private and, maybe take a little water or go where there is some and address the universe without ceasing, for several days. It varies according to the person involved but it is the utter intensity that matters. That and what you are after. It’s all in Pantanjali’s Yoga Aphorisms and other places and the dark side is well aware of these things, though they never get The Grail.

All this talk about Mason’s and ‘orders’ by people on the outskirts, is just a lot of conjecture about hand signs and all that. It is part and parcel of the equipment of both sides and just cause you see Pike or anyone showing hand signs or saying anything doesn’t actually mean anything unless you know what’s going on. The game of the darkness is that the finger points at everyone. When I was in prison I saw black guys holding their hands a certain way, having to do with reverse kundalini and I had mine another way but there are so many similarities. This has nothing to do with color, simply the state of the times and place of conditions. My fiercest protectors were from the criminal ranks and were the baddest of the bad or I would have been god knows what, like it was for others in there so… one never knows. Power is a very funny thing and it all comes from one place, for the purpose of demonstration, under the aegis of something we will never be able to compute or define and I am grateful for that, given the propensity of some of the players.

I’m always listening for ‘the ringing’. I look for a sound to come, when I read something. It tells me if there is authenticity, or just some degree of bullshit …and power is modified by the bullshit that is employed, which is how and why evil destroys itself. Some agent from that org that has a hard on for me dropped in lately to call me a Nephilim, in a derogatory sense. I’ve no idea about any of that. All I know is what I am after and that I don’t know. I don’t spend my time in these areas. I don’t know what connections there are to this or that. I just pursue the ineffable and continue, hoping to lose my shortcomings. If I’m up to anything, I would have to say I am most concerned with not being reactive and in trying to gain a higher understanding in the progression of my days through this passage of time.

At this point I am left with what I think; what I see, what I feel and I have no way of knowing how accurate I might be. I get the sense that a number of disparate agencies and entities are looking to close the deal, while holding up massive weights of bullshit and juggling a lot of balls. It reeks of over extension. It reeks of one’s grasp exceeding one’s reach but that’s how this system works. That’s the name of that tune. It’s another kind of sound and the one I hear most of the time that resonates with something other than what I want to be engaged in. I think it’s all going to come down on their heads and that includes all the silly fools who believe in them as well. As for what you might do, or I might do, well, surely you have some sort of plan (grin)? So it goes, as it goes, might be the way to end this piece and my blessings upon you in your endeavor. Don’t get lost in the underbrush.

End Transmission…….

Peace

Source

Top 10 things the TSA could do if its power is not sensibly limited

Mike Adams – Natural News May 27, 2011

Let’s ask the commonsense question: If the TSA can run security checkpoints at not only airports but also local high schools, and if the TSA can reach down your pants and feel your genitals in complete violation of your Fourth Amendment rights, and if the TSA says it has the complete authority under the U.S. Constitution to do whatever it wants, then what are the limits on the TSA’s power?

It’s not just an important question, it is THE question of freedom: What are the limits of government power?.

TSA claims supreme power over Americans

According to the TSA’s current explanations, there are no limits to its power. It can do whatever it wants. But America’s founding fathers, not surprisingly, strongly disagreed. In fact, they penned two documents that specifically defined strict limits to government power. Those two documents are, of course, the U.S. Constitution and its Bill of Rights.

The Constitution and the Bill of Rights are, technically, anti-government documents. They spell out the limits of government in order to protect the freedoms of the People. Remember, these were documents that came out of a time when British soldiers would conduct house-to-house searches – looting homes and sexually assaulting women – without any legal justification whatsoever. The early American colonists were infuriated at this abuse of power, so they created the Fourth Amendment which specifically forbade searches of people or their private property without court-approved warrants that specifically named the things to be searched or seized.

The Fourth Amendment, in other words, was specifically written to stop rogue governments from abusing their power and conducting illegal police operations against the People. It’s no stretch to say that the Fourth Amendment was written to halt almost exactly the kind of behaviour now being pursued by the TSA – illegal bodily searches without cause or justification, without warrants and without any legal proceedings whatsoever.

The TSA, , in other words, is doing to Americans today what the occupying British Army did to the American colonists before the Revolutionary War.

The TSA recognizes no law and no limits to its power

It all makes you wonder: What are, exactly, the limits of the TSA’s power? If the TSA will not recognize the limits of government power set forth in the U.S. Constitution – nor the rights of the People enumerated in the Bill of Rights – then what set of written rules or guidelines provide any boundaries for the TSA?

The answer is simple: There are no limits to the TSA’s power! If it simply ignores the Bill of Rights – and if the People do not assert their own rights in the face of a growing tyranny – then the TSA can do essentially whatever it wants. This is how tyranny works: tyrants keep expanding their power grabs until they are stopped (usually by force).

That’s why today, I’ve outlined the top 10 things the TSA could do if its power is not limited. These are what’s probably next on the TSA’s wish list. And if America does not rise up against this outrageous tyranny and abuse of power, we will become victims of it.

Here are ten things the TSA could do in America starting right now:

Ten things the TSA could do in America

1) Conduct house to house searches without warrants or justification of any kind (and arrest people who resist).

2) Shut down your state’s highways, railroads and airports at any time, for any reason, without explanation or justification.

3) Conduct body cavity searches at polling stations. This could literally mean TSA agents reaching into your anus to see if they can find any “hanging chads” in there.

4) Search parking lots for cars with Ron Paul stickers, then impound the vehicles under suspicion of terrorism.

5) Begin carrying firearms and using them to enforce its agenda. Right now, TSA goons don’t carry guns, but before long they could be sticking them in your face while planting cocaine in your carry-on luggage just to have you arrested and molested in the back room.

6) Demand to install TSA representatives in local Sheriff’s offices and police departments. These would function as TSA spies who report on the activities of local law enforcement and keep them in line. It’s a classic Nazi tactic, also used throughout the KGB.

7) Announce a TSA fee collection mandate from air travelers, then shut down any airport that refused to comply. This would basically be a for-profit racketeering operation. Pay up or lose your airport.

8) Demand veto power over ALL state legislation involving security, then boycott states that refuse to comply. Yes, the TSA could start having a say in local politics and could even demand the power to veto local legislation it didn’t like (such as the recent attempt in Texas to criminalize the TSA’s obscene pat-downs).

9) Set up official TSA naked inspection rooms at airports, where TSA officials take travelers into the back room and demand they disrobe as a “security measure.” The TSA would effectively operate as a gang of serial molesters.

10) Visit local malls and sporting arenas and demand they pay TSA “protection fees” if they wish to keep their events safe from terrorists. This is classic mob behavior — a “protection racket” that extracts money from businesses if they don’t want to be bombed or burned down. The TSA has already started running bomb exercises in airports just to see how police might react (http://www.naturalnews.com/032458_T…).

Don’t believe any of this can happen? Well go back in time a decade and ask yourself in 2001: Would you have believed that in 2011 the U.S. government would be reaching down your pants and feeling your genitals as a requirement for you to board an airplane?

More importantly, for those who say this could never happen, I ask the crucial question: What would YOU do to stop it? Tyranny grows in power because people go along with it. Perhaps 90 percent of the sheeple in America would go right along with whatever outrageous and tyrannical schemes the TSA would come up with. The mainstream media would report it all as “business as usual,” too. Oh, the TSA is now molesting women in house-to-house searches? Well, it’s all to protect us from Al Qaeda, so it must be okay.

The TSA is demanding cash fees from travelers at airport security checkpoints? Oh, it’s just another reasonable fee to protect us all from terrorists, people would reason. There seems to be nothing the TSA can do now that will awaken the sheeple of America who have been drugged, fluoridated and vaccinated into a state of near-total cognitive compliance.

So share this list, friends: Let your friends and social networkers know what’s coming soon if the TSA is not stopped. This is a rogue government agency that lusts for power, and it absolutely will not stop until it is running the secret police infrastructure in America that molests and extorts individuals and businesses, all under the false cover of “fighting terrorism.”

I will be discussing all this on the Alex Jones Show, the Friday, May 27, 2011 edition. You can tune in and hear more discussion on this at www.PrisonPlanet.com or catch this in the archives by subscribing as a member there.

Please forward this list to others, and don’t be surprised if some of this comes true over the next two years as the TSA rises to power under the excuse of providing a little security.

Source

Founder of electric shock autism treatment school forced to quit

Ed Pilkington – Gaurdian.co.uk May 25, 2011

The founder of a controversial school that treats severely autistic and emotionally disturbed children by shocking them into submission with the use of electrodes has been forced to quit the institution and serve five years’ probation.

Matthew Israel, a Harvard-trained psychologist, has created a treatment that is unique to the US and possibly the world. The Judge Rotenberg Center, just outside Boston, disciplines its students using a punishment machine that Israel invented called the GED, which gives a two-second electric shock to the skin of up to 90 milliamps.

At the centre, which was profiled by the Guardian earlier this year, students wear backpacks around the clock with the GED electric generators inside them, and are zapped using remote control devices controlled by their carers. In some cases, they are shocked as often as 30 times a day as a means of dissuading them from behaviour deemed dangerous to themselves or others.

The criminal charges brought against Israel relate to an incident in August 2007 at one of the school’s residential homes where students sleep at night. A call came in from someone posing as an authorised supervisor, who informed the carers on duty that two teenagers had misbehaved and should be given shock treatment.

At 2am, the boys were strapped on boards and given multiple shocks. One of the boys, aged 18, was shocked 77 times over a three-hour period and the other boy, aged 16, was shocked 29 times. It was later discovered that the initial call had been a hoax.

The Massachusetts attorney general, Martha Coakley, indicted Israel over allegations that he ordered his staff to destroy video evidence that revealed exactly what happened that night. Prosecutors had previously ordered that the video recordings from the home were preserved.

“Dr Israel then attempted to destroy evidence of the events and mislead investigators, and that conduct led to his indictments today. Today’s action removes Dr Israel from the school and should ensure better protection for students in the future,” Coakley said.

The conviction is a substantial blow to Israel, who has weathered a storm of protest about his controversial methods for 40 years. He announced his retirement from the school on 2 May, without referring to the pending criminal case. He said he was moving to California, where his wife Judy lives.

“I am now almost 78 years old, and it is time for me to move over and let others take the reins,” he said in a resignation letter.

But his departure will not materially change the way the school operates, crucially its technique of disciplining children by meting out electric shocks as a form of supposedly therapeutic punishment. Of the school’s 225 students, 97 are currently on the electric shock regime.

The terms of the plea deal struck between Israel and the prosecutors require the school to introduce additional monitoring to prevent a similar lapse of security happening again. But the shocks themselves can continue.

“The case was only about Israel’s conduct, it did not address the way the school is run,” a spokesman for the attorney general’s office said.

Laurie Ahern of Disability Rights International, which has been a persistent critic of the school, said that without an end to the shocks, Israel’s departure would be irrelevant. “I don’t see any radical change at the moment.”

Hillary Cook, who spent three years at the school until 2009, and who was regularly shocked, said that whatever happened to Israel, she wanted to see the regime of shocks abolished. “I’m just worried about the kids who live there, because I know what it’s like. They say the shocks are like a bee sting, and believe me they are not. It should be illegal to physically harm children and disabled people in this country.”

The school has been a subject of huge controversy over past decades, with regular attempts to shut it down. Last year its use of electric shocks was attacked as a form of torture by the UN rapporteur on torture.

In February, the justice department opened an investigation into the school after it received a complaint alleging the centre had violated disability laws.

Despite the negative publicity directed at him, Israel managed to keep operating for so long partly because he had the vociferous support of parents of severely autistic children at the school.

The centre rarely uses drugs on its students, in contrast to many other homes for autistic people where heavy doses of psychotropic drugs are prescribed. At the time of Israel’s resignation, Louisa Goldberg, whose son has been on the shock regime for the past 11 years, said that “Dr Israel’s pioneering efforts have given our child back his life and we are extremely grateful for all that he has done for our family”.

Source

Welcome to the Violent World of Mr. Hopey Changey

John Pilger – via Information Clearing House May 26, 2011

When Britain lost control of Egypt in 1956, Prime Minister Anthony Eden said he wanted the nationalist president Gamal Abdel Nasser “destroyed … murdered … I don’t give a damn if there’s anarchy and chaos in Egypt”. Those insolent Arabs, Winston Churchill had urged in 1951, should be driven “into the gutter from which they should never have emerged”.

The language of colonialism may have been modified; the spirit and the hypocrisy are unchanged. A new imperial phase is unfolding in direct response to the Arab uprising that began in January and has shocked Washington and Europe, causing an Eden-style panic. The loss of the Egyptian tyrant Mubarak was grievous, though not irretrievable; an American-backed counter-revolution is under way as the military regime in Cairo is seduced with new bribes and power shifting from the street to political groups that did not initiate the revolution. The western aim, as ever, is to stop authentic democracy and reclaim control.

Libya is the immediate opportunity. The Nato attack on Libya, with the UN Security Council assigned to mandate a bogus “no fly zone” to “protect civilians”, is strikingly similar to the final destruction of Yugoslavia in 1999. There was no UN cover for the bombing of Serbia and the “rescue” of Kosovo, yet the propaganda echoes today. Like Slobodan Milosevic, Muammar Gaddafi is a “new Hitler”, plotting “genocide” against his people. There is no evidence of this, as there was no genocide in Kosovo. In Libya there is a tribal civil war; and the armed uprising against Gaddafi has long been appropriated by the Americans, French and British, their planes attacking residential Tripoli with uranium-tipped missiles and the submarine HMS Triumph firing Tomahawk missiles, a repeat of the “shock and awe” in Iraq that left thousands of civilians dead and maimed. As in Iraq, the victims, which include countless incinerated Libyan army conscripts, are media unpeople.

In the “rebel” east, the terrorising and killing of black African immigrants is not news. On 22 May, a rare piece in the Washington Post described the repression, lawlessness and death squads in the “liberated zones” just as visiting EU foreign policy chief, Catherine Ashton, declared she had found only “great aspirations” and “leadership qualities”. In demonstrating these qualities, Mustafa Abdel Jalil, the “rebel leader” and Gaddafi’s justice minister until February, pledged, “Our friends … will have the best opportunity in future contracts with Libya.” The east holds most of Libya’s oil, the greatest reserves in Africa. In March the rebels, with expert foreign guidance, “transferred” to Benghazi the Libyan Central Bank, a wholly owned state institution. This is unprecedented. Meanwhile, the US and the EU “froze” almost US$100 billion in Libyan funds, “the largest sum ever blocked”, according to official statements. It is the biggest bank robbery in history.

The French elite are enthusiastic robbers and bombers. Nicholas Sarkozy’s imperial design is for a French-dominated Mediterranean Union (UM), which would allow France to “return” to its former colonies in North Africa and profit from privileged investment and cheap labour. Gaddafi described the Sarkozy plan as “an insult” that was “taking us for fools”. The Merkel government in Berlin agreed, fearing its old foe would diminish Germany in the EU, and abstained in the Security Council vote on Libya.

Like the attack on Yugoslavia and the charade of Milosevic’s trial, the International Criminal Court is being used by the US, France and Britain to prosecute Gaddafi while his repeated offers of a ceasefire are ignored. Gaddafi is a Bad Arab. David Cameron’s government and its verbose top general want to eliminate this Bad Arab, like the Obama administration killed a famously Bad Arab in Pakistan recently. The crown prince of Bahrain, on the other hand, is a Good Arab. On 19 May, he was warmly welcomed to Britain by Cameron with a photo-call on the steps of 10 Downing Street. In March, the same crown prince slaughtered unarmed protestors and allowed Saudi forces to crush his country’s democracy movement. The Obama administration has rewarded Saudi Arabia, one of the most repressive regimes on earth, with a $US60 billion arms deal, the biggest in US history. The Saudis have the most oil. They are the Best Arabs.

The assault on Libya, a crime under the Nuremberg standard, is Britain’s 46th military “intervention” in the Middle East since 1945. Like its imperial partners, Britain’s goal is to control Africa’s oil. Cameron is not Anthony Eden, but almost. Same school. Same values. In the media-pack, the words colonialism and imperialism are no longer used, so that the cynical and the credulous can celebrate state violence in its more palatable form.

And as “Mr. Hopey Changey” (the name that Ted Rall, the great American cartoonist, gives Barack Obama), is fawned upon by the British elite and launches another insufferable presidential campaign, the Anglo-American reign of terror proceeds in Afghanistan and elsewhere, with the murder of people by unmanned drones – a US/Israel innovation, embraced by Obama. For the record, on a scorecard of imposed misery, from secret trials and prisons and the hounding of whistleblowers and the criminalising of dissent to the incarceration and impoverishment of his own people, mostly black people, Obama is as bad as George W. Bush.

The Palestinians understand all this. As their young people courageously face the violence of Israel’s blood-racism, carrying the keys of their grandparents’ stolen homes, they are not even included in Mr. Hopey Changey’s list of peoples in the Middle East whose liberation is long overdue. What the oppressed need, he said on 19 May, is a dose of “America’s interests [that] are essential to them”. He insults us all.

Source

A tale from the frontline of Palestinian protest

Robert Fisk – The Independent May 28, 2011

I went to see Munib Masri in his Beirut hospital bed yesterday morning.

He is part of the Arab revolution, although he doesn’t see it that way. He looked in pain – he was in pain – with a drip in his right arm, a fever, and the fearful wounds caused by an Israeli 5.56mm bullet that hit his arm. Yes, an Israeli bullet – because Munib was one of thousands of young and unarmed Palestinians and Lebanese who stood in their thousands in front of the Israeli army’s live fire two weeks ago on the very border of the land they call “Palestine”.

“I was angry, mad – I’d just seen a small child hit by the Israelis,” Munib said to me. “I walked nearer the border fence. The Israelis were shooting so many people. When I got hit, I was paralysed. My legs gave way. Then I realised what had happened. My friends carried me away.” I asked Munib if he thought he was part of the Arab Spring. No, he said, he was just protesting at the loss of his land. “I liked what happened to Egypt and Tunisia. I am glad I went to the Lebanese border, but I also regret it.”

Which is not surprising. More than 100 unarmed protesters were wounded in the Palestinian-Lebanese demonstration to mark the 1948 expulsion and exodus of 750,000 Palestinians from their homes in Mandate Palestine – six were killed – and among the youngest of those hit by bullets were two little girls. One was six, the other eight. More targets of Israel’s “war on terror”, I suppose, although the bullet that hit Munib, a 22-year old geology student at the American University of Beirut, did awful damage. It penetrated his side, cut through his kidney, hit his spleen and then broke up in his spine. I held the bullet in my hand yesterday, three sparkling pieces of brown metal that had shattered inside Munib’s body. He is, of course, lucky to be alive.

And I guess lucky to be an American citizen, much good did it do him. The US embassy sent a female diplomat to see his parents at the hospital, Munib’s mother Mouna told me. “I am devastated, sad, angry – and I don’t wish this to happen to any Israeli mother. The American diplomats came here to the hospital and I explained the situation of Munib. I said: ‘I would like you to give a message to your government – to put pressure on them to change their policies here. If this had happened to an Israeli mother, the world would have gone upside down.’ But she said to me: ‘I’m not here to discuss politics. We’re here for social support, to evacuate you if you want, to help with payments.’ I said that I don’t need any of these things – I need you to explain the situation.”

Any US diplomat is free to pass on a citizen’s views to the American government but this woman’s response was all too familiar. Munib, though an American, had been hit by the wrong sort of bullet. Not a Syrian bullet or an Egyptian bullet but an Israeli bullet, a bad kind to discuss, certainly the wrong kind to persuade an American diplomat to do anything about it. After all, when Benjamin Netanyahu gets 55 ovations in Congress – more than the average Baath party congress in Damascus – why should Munib’s government care about him?

In reality, he has been to “Palestine” many times – Munib’s family comes from Beit Jala and Bethlehem and he knows the West Bank well, though he told me he was concerned he might be arrested when he next returns. Being a Palestinian isn’t easy, though, whichever side of the border you’re on. Mouna Masri was enraged when her sister asked her husband to renew her residency in east Jerusalem. “The Israelis insisted that she must fly from London herself even though they knew she was having chemotherapy.

“I was in Palestine only two days before Munib was hurt, visiting my father-in-law in Nablus. I saw all the family and I was happy but I missed Munib very much and so I returned to Beirut. He was very excited about the march to the border. There were three or four buses taking students and faculty from the university here and he got up at 6.55 on the Sunday morning. At about 4pm, Munib’s aunt Mai called and asked if there was any news and I began to feel uneasy. Then I had a call from my husband saying Munib had been wounded in the leg.”

It was far worse. Munib lost so much blood that doctors at the Bent Jbeil hospital thought he would die. The United Nations peacekeepers in Lebanon – disastrously absent from the Maroun al-Ras section of the border during the five-hour demonstration – flew him by helicopter to Beirut. Many of those who travelled to the border with him had come from the refugee camps and – unlike Munib – had never visited the land from which their parents came. Indeed, in some cases, they had never even seen it.

Munib’s aunt Mai described how many of those who had gone on the march and by bus to the frontier felt a breeze coming across the border from what is now Israel. “They breathed it in, like it was a kind of freedom,” she said. There you have it.

Munib may not believe he is part of the Arab Spring but he is part of the Arab awakening. Even though he has a home in the West Bank, he decided to walk with the dispossessed whose homes lie inside what is now Israel. “There was a lack of fear,” his Uncle Munzer said. “These people wanted dignity. And with dignity comes success.” Which is what the people of Tunisia cried. And of Egypt. And of Yemen, and of Bahrain, and of Syria. I suspect that Obama, despite his cringing to Netanyahu, understands this. It was what, in his rather craven way, he was trying to warn the Israelis about. The Arab awakening embraces the Palestinians too.

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Bad News From the BBC: Replete with Imbalance and Distortion

Media Lens – May 25, 2011

One of the main headlines on the BBC news homepage earlier this month read, ‘Violence erupts at Israel borders’. Israeli soldiers had shot dead at least 12 protesters and injured dozens more. BBC ‘impartiality’ decreed that the brutal killings were presented almost as an act of nature, a volcanic eruption that simply happened.

Clicking on the link did at least bring up a more accurate headline: ‘Israeli forces open fire at Palestinian protesters’. But the brutality was sanitised, with no details of the many victims. The Israeli viewpoint was prominent with Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu saying that he ‘hoped’ that ‘calm and quiet will quickly return, but let nobody be mistaken, we are determined to defend our borders and sovereignty’.

Somehow a ‘neutral’ BBC perspective dictated that the lead image illustrating the story was of young Palestinian men throwing rocks in ‘clashes’ with fully armed soldiers from the Israeli Defence Forces.

The Palestinians had been taking part in annual protests on Nakba (‘Catastrophe’) day which, as the BBC put it, ‘marks the moment when 100,000s of Palestinians lost their homes’ on the establishment of the state of Israel in 1948. Again, the BBC’s sanitised version of ‘lost their homes’ buries awkward history, as though homes had simply been repossessed when families fell behind on their mortgage payments. In reality, more than half of Palestine’s native population, close to 800,000 people, had been uprooted and 531 villages destroyed (Ilan Pappe, ‘The Ethnic Cleansing of Palestine’, Oneworld, 2006).

After complaints from us, and perhaps realising the newspeak was just too much to swallow, the BBC tweaked the sentence the following day to read:

‘Hundreds of thousands of Palestinians fled or were forced out of their homes in fighting after its creation.’

BBC Middle East correspondent Jim Muir was quick to implicate foreign powers in the latest annual Nakba protests, asking the leading question: ‘Palestinian protests: Arab spring or foreign manipulation?’ and pointing his finger at Syria and Iran. True to type, the BBC journalist’s ‘analysis’ was not a million miles distant from the message being broadcast from Tel Aviv. Jonathan Cook, an independent journalist based in Nazareth, notes:

‘With characteristic obtuseness, Israel’s leaders identified Iranian “fingerprints” on the day’s events – as though Palestinians lacked enough grievances of their own to stage protests.’ (Jonathan Cook, ‘On an old anniversary, a new sense that change is possible’, The National, 17 May, 2011)

The BBC’s famed ‘balance’ should mean that, in the wake of Muir’s piece, we see a BBC article about US ‘foreign manipulation’ of Syria and Iran, and indeed the whole Middle East. Presumably the balancing piece is in the pipeline.

As with the most effective propaganda published by the Soviet newspaper Pravda, there may be something in what Muir says. But the required journalistic emphasis, as ever, is on the misdeeds ‘our’ officially sanctioned state enemies may be committing, not on the crimes of our own government.

BBC And ITV Bias Exposed

Professional journalists reporting from the Middle East ought to be discomfited by the publication of More Bad News From Israel, an updated study by Greg Philo and Mike Berry of the Glasgow University Media Group (Pluto Press, 2011; first edition published as Bad News From Israel in 2004).

The book examines media coverage of the conflict in Israel and Palestine, and the impact of this reporting on public opinion. In the largest study of its kind ever undertaken, the authors illustrate major biases in the way Palestinians and Israelis are represented in the media, including how casualties, and the motives and rationale of the different parties involved, are depicted. In follow-up interviews with viewers and listeners, the book also reveals the extraordinary differences in levels of public knowledge and understanding of the conflict. It is significant that gaps in public understanding often reflect the propaganda generated by Israel and its supporters in the West. Indeed, the book exposes the ‘success of the Israelis in establishing key elements of their perspective and the effect of these being relayed uncritically in media accounts’.

In a powerful new chapter, Philo and Berry present an in-depth analysis of BBC and ITV news coverage of the 2008-2009 Israeli attack on Gaza, Operation Cast Lead. On 27 December 2008, Israel launched a massive series of assaults on the densely-populated strip of land with F-16 fighter jets, Apache helicopters and unmanned drones. Attacks with tanks and ground troops followed. 22 days later, the total number of Palestinian dead was estimated by B’Tselem, the Israeli human rights group, as 1,389. The death toll included 318 children. Ten Israeli soldiers were also killed, four of them in ‘friendly fire’ incidents. During the attacks, Israeli forces repeatedly bombed schools, medical centres, hospitals, ambulances, UN buildings, power plants, sewage plants, roads, bridges and civilian homes.

In the aftermath of the attacks, the UN sponsored a fact-finding study chaired by a South African judge, Richard Goldstone. The Goldstone report, along with others by Amnesty International, Human Rights Watch and the League of Arab States, included accounts of the killings of civilians by Israel Defence Forces in a cold, calculated and deliberate manner. Goldstone subsequently issued a supposed partial ‘retraction’, apparently following intense Israeli pressure. But he did not withdraw the report and his co-authors stood by their work. (Peter Hart, ‘Is There Really a Goldstone “Retraction”?‘, FAIR, April 5, 2011)

The researchers recorded, transcribed and analysed over 4000 lines of broadcast news text from both the BBC and ITV (it is not stated explicitly, but one assumes these 4000 lines were shared approximately equally between the two broadcasters).

‘The most striking feature of the news texts’, write Philo and Berry, ‘is the dominance of the Israeli perspective, in relation to the causes of the conflict.’

Specifically, they note that the Israeli themes of ‘ending the rockets’ (fired from Gaza by Hamas into Israel), the ‘need for [Israel’s] security’ and to ‘stop the smuggling of weapons’ (by Hamas into Gaza) received a total of 316.5 lines of text from the BBC. Other Israeli propaganda messages, such as the need to ‘hit Hamas’ and that ‘Hamas and terrorists are to blame’, received 62 lines on BBC News. The total for Israeli explanatory statements on the BBC was 421.25. This compared with a much lower total for Hamas/Palestinian explanations of just 126.25. In ITV News coverage, there were over 302 lines relating to Israeli explanatory statements but just 78 for Hamas/Palestinian.

But even these 126.25 BBC and 78 ITV lines of ‘explanations’ of the Palestinian perspective lacked substance: ‘the bulk of the Palestinian accounts do not explain their case beyond saying that they will resist.’ What was almost non-existent were crucial facts about ‘how the continuing existence of the blockade affects the rationale for Palestinian action and how they see their struggle against Israel and its continuing military occupation.’

For the Palestinians, then, the military occupation of their lands and the crushing blockade of Gaza are utterly central to the ‘conflict’. But on BBC News there were just 14.25 lines referring to the occupation and only 10.5 on the ending of the siege/blockade. ITV News had 12.25 lines on ending the siege/blockade and a single line about the occupation. The bias is glaring.

Instead of adequately explaining the Palestinian viewpoint, BBC and ITV news heavily reflected Israeli propaganda:

‘The dominant explanation for the attack [Operation Cast Lead] was that it was to stop the firing of rockets by Hamas. The offer that Hamas was said to have made, to halt this in exchange for lifting the blockade (which Israel had rejected), was almost completely absent from the coverage.’

In short, news coverage of the brutal assault was skewed by the Israeli perspective, perpetuating ‘a one-sided view of the causes of the conflict by highlighting the issue of the rockets without reporting the Hamas offer’, and by burying rational views on the purpose of the attack: namely the Israeli desire to inflict collective punishment on the Palestinian people. (See our earlier media alerts: ‘An Eye For An Eyelash: The Gaza Massacre’, and ‘The BBC, Impartiality, And The Hidden Logic Of Massacre’)

In classic academic understatement, Philo and Berry conclude:

‘It is difficult in the face of this to see how the BBC can sustain a claim to be offering balanced reporting.’

Based on their equally poor performance, the same would surely apply to ITV.

Tim Llewellyn, a former BBC Middle East correspondent, backs up Philo and Berry’s careful analysis, arguing that BBC coverage of Israel and Palestine ‘is replete with imbalance and distortion’. He points to his ex-employer’s ‘continuing inability to describe in a just and contextualised way the conflict between military occupier and militarily occupied. There is no attempt to properly convey cause and effect, to report the misery, violence and pillage that demean and deny freedom to the Palestinians and provoke their (limited) actions.’ (‘BBC is “confusing cause and effect” in its Israeli coverage’, Guardian, May 23, 2011)

Llewellyn also rightly castigated the ‘labyrinthine’ official complaints procedure that means members of the public have to battle with an ‘army of lawyers and layers of bureaucracy’ that ‘the BBC now deploys to see off all but the most assiduous.’

He continued:

‘Editors and producers rarely respond individually to complaints and, if they do, do so with question-raising answers and self-justification.’

An experience which we and many of our readers can confirm!

Llewellyn sums up:

‘The BBC, like a well-kicked hound, does not in its post-Hutton malaise wish to antagonise politicians. It goes with reporting that’s as low-profile as possible on this most sensitive of issues. It lives in horror of being accused of anti-semitism, Israel’s ultimate smear. Reporters and editors know they have to pitch the Israel story in a certain manner to get it on the air – in effect, self-censorship.’

The Guardian allowed the BBC to provide a response to Llewellyn’s article. This ended with a sly comment:

‘Although Tim Llewellyn was indeed a BBC correspondent some years ago, we note that he subsequently was active for a period with the Council for Arab-British Understanding (CAABU).’

Perhaps the BBC should end its Newsnight programmes with a similar warning:

‘Although Jeremy Paxman is an anchor for the BBC flagship news programme, Newsnight, we note that he has also been actively involved with the British-American Project for some years.’

Something similar happened to John Pilger in 2002, when he was allowed to defend his film, ‘Palestine is Still the Issue’, in the Guardian opinion pages. Unbeknownst to Pilger, Stephen Pollard, a Zionist and later editor of the Jewish Chronicle, was to be given the same space to mount an ill-founded attack on the piece in the paper the following day. Pilger’s film was later praised for its accuracy and integrity following an enquiry by the ITC.

A Stony Silence

We emailed David Mannion, editor-in-chief of ITV News, and Jeremy Bowen, the BBC’s Middle East editor, for their views. Neither replied. We did not have much luck either with Jon Williams, the BBC’s world news editor. No great surprise given that, earlier this year, Williams blocked Media Lens even from following him on Twitter (as did Alan Rusbridger, editor of the Guardian).

When one of our readers asked Williams why he had blocked us, he replied: ‘That’s what happens when people send you abusive tweets’. In fact, the sole Tweet we had sent him was this one, asking for his thoughts on observations made by journalists Jonathan Cook and Tim Llewellyn on Israel-Palestine news coverage.

We have always made it clear that we abhor abuse directed at journalists (or anyone else). We asked Williams via Twitter and email which ‘abusive’ messages he had in mind, saying that we would happily apologise if we had caused offence. He did not respond.

We did, however, get a reply from BBC Middle East correspondent Jim Muir – a nice example of the ‘It’s-not-my-job’ response we have seen so often over the years:

‘I’m afraid I don’t have a “response” as I’m not a spokesman for anything other than myself. Nor, frankly, do I have time to study and evaluate the BBC’s output; that’s not my job, and it’s rarely part of my input as I spend most of my time on primary sources. My own reporting is rarely on the Palestinian/Israeli issue as such; sometimes on its ramifications but I am normally engaged on Iraq and more recently Egypt, Tunisia, Syria and Lebanon. I’m sure you’ve been in touch with BBC editorial management in London, and equally sure that you will get a response from them.’ (Email, May 16, 2011)

In an attempt to encourage Muir to assert his human right to freedom of speech, we emailed him back the same day:

‘Many thanks for your email.

‘”I’m not a spokesman for anything other than myself.”

‘Speaking for yourself then, what’s your own impression of BBC news coverage of the wider Middle East – how fair and balanced is it? Surely you have a view?

‘Feel free to offer your thoughts in confidence without named attribution.’

Muir did not reply.

Source

The Establishment Eliminates A Threat

By Paul Craig Roberts – Information Clearing House May 20, 2011

The police and the prostitute media have made it impossible for Dominique Strauss-Kahn to get a fair trial. From the moment of the announcement that he had been arrested on suspicion of sexually assaulting a hotel maid, and before he was ever indicted, the accounts given by the police were designed to create the impression that the director of the International Monetary Fund was guilty. For example, the police told the media, which duly regurgitated to the public, that Strauss-Kahn was in such a hurry to flee the scene of the crime that he left behind his cell phone. The police also put out the story that by calling airlines and demanding passenger lists, they managed to catch the fleeing rapist just as his plane was departing for France.
A New York judge denied Strauss-Kahn bail on the basis of police misrepresentation that he was apprehended fleeing the country.
Once he was imprisoned, the police announced that Strauss-Kahn was on suicide watch, which is a way of suggesting to the public that the accused rapist might take his own life in order to avoid the public humiliation of a guilty verdict from a jury.

But what really happened, assuming one can learn anything from press reports, is that Strauss-Kahn, upon arriving at JFK airport for his scheduled flight, discovered that he did not have his cell phone and telephoned the hotel, the scene of the alleged crime. It boggles the mind that anyone could possibly think that a person fleeing from his crime would call the scene of the crime, ask about his left behind cell phone, and tell them where he was.

Then in rapid succession, reeking of orchestration, a French woman steps forward and declares that a decade ago she was nearly raped by Strauss-Kahn. This was followed by Kristin Davis, the Manhattan Madam of the prostitute who did in Eliot Spitzer before he could get the banksters on Wall Street, stepping forward to announce that one of her call girls refused to service Strauss-Kahn a second time because he was too rough in the act.

With hunting season opened, any woman whose career would benefit from publicity, or whose bank account would bless a damage award, can now step forward and claim to have been a victim or near victim of Strauss-Kahn.

This is not to deny that Strauss-Kahn might have an inordinate appetite for sex that did him in. It is to say that long before a jury hears from the maid, or from a prosecutor speaking for the maid “who is too traumatized to appear in court,” the jury has been programmed with the verdict that he is guilty.

Why would he run away if he didn’t do it?

Look at all the women he has accosted!

You get the picture.

I have written about the anomalies of the case. One of the most striking is the confirmed reports in the French and British press that a political activist for French President Sarkozy, Jonathan Pinet, tweeted the news of Strauss-Kahn’s arrest to Arnaud Dassier, a spin doctor for Sarkozy, before the news was announced by the New York police.

Pinet’s explanation for how he was the first to know is that a “friend” in the Sofitel Hotel, where the alleged crime took place, told him. Is it merely a coincidence that the men assigned the task of removing the Strauss-Kahn threat to French President Sarkozy’s re-election had a clued-in friend in the Sofitel Hotel? Did the police clue-in the “friend” before they made the public announcement? If so, why?
What bothers me about the Strauss-Kahn affair is that if the police have evidence that supports their insistence on his guilt, it is pointless for the police to set Strauss-Kahn up in the media. Generally, set-ups like this occur only when there is no evidence or when the evidence has to be fabricated and cannot withstand examination.
As a person who had a Washington career, I find other aspects of the case disturbing. Strauss-Kahn had emerged as a threat to the establishment. Polls showed that as the socialist candidate, he was the odds-on favorite to defeat the American candidate, Sarkozy, in the upcoming French presidential election. Perhaps it was only electoral posturing to help defeat Sarkozy, but Strauss-Kahn indicated that he intended to move the International Monetary Fund away from its past policy of making the poor pay for the mistakes of the rich. He spoke of strengthening collective bargaining, and of restructuring mortgages, tax and spending policies in order that the economy would serve ordinary people in addition to the banksters. Strauss-Kahn said that regulation needed to be restored to financial markets and implied that a more even distribution of income was required.

These remarks, together with a likely win over Sarkozy in the French election, made Strauss-Kahn a double-barreled challenge to the establishment. The third strike against him was the recent IMF report

that said China would surpass the US as the world’s first economy within five years.
People who haven’t spent their professional life in Washington may not understand the threat to Washington that is in the IMF report. Whether deserved or not, the IMF has a lot of credibility. By placing China as the number one economic power by the end of the next US presidential term, the IMF thrust a dagger through the heart of American hegemony. Washington’s power is based on America’s economic supremacy. The IMF report said that this supremacy was at its end.
This kind of announcement tells the political world that, as the headline read, “the age of America is over.” For the first time in decades, other countries can see the prospect of escaping from US domination. They don’t have to be puppet states, part of the hegemonic empire. They see the prospect of serving their own people and their own interests instead of those of Washington. European countries, for example, forced to fight for Washington in Afghanistan and Libya, see light at the end of the tunnel. They can now think about refusing.

Although rich and a member of the establishment, and independently of his behavior toward women, Strauss-Kahn made the mistake of revealing that he might have a social conscience. Either this social conscience or the hubris of power led him to challenge American supremacy. This is an unforgivable crime for which he is being punished.

My friend, Alexander Cockburn, an intelligent and civilized person who is derided by right-wingers as a communist, lacks my experience of Washington. Consequently, he thinks that the facts will come out, although he seems to prefer that they come out on the side of the maid and not Strauss-Kahn.

If Alex were the Bolshevik he is said to be, he would know that no high-ranking figure who was serving the establishment would be destroyed on the basis of the word of an immigrant maid living in a sub-let apartment in a building for aids victims. The very notion that the US establishment craves justice to this extent is a total absurdity. Americans are so indifferent to injustice that the American public shrugs off the hundreds of thousands and millions of women, children, and village elders who are murdered, maimed, dispossessed, and displaced by the US military in Iraq, Afghanistan, Pakistan, Yemen, Libya, Somalia, and wherever Washington and the military/security complex, while feeding on power and profit, can claim to be protecting Americans from “terrorists” or bringing democracy to the heathen.

The American criminal justice system is riddled with wrongful convictions and stinks of injustice. The US has a much higher rate of incarceration than alleged authoritarian regimes, such as China, and routinely destroys the lives of young people, and even mothers of small children, for using drugs.

Strauss-Kahn’s indictment serves emotional needs of conservatives, left-wingers, and feminists as well as establishment agendas. Conservatives don’t like the French, because they did not support the US invasion of Iraq. The left-wing doesn’t like rich white guys and IMF officials, and feminists don’t like womanizers. But even if the government’s case falls apart in the courtroom, Strauss-Kahn has been removed from the French presidential race and from the IMF. This, not justice for an immigrant, is what the case is about.

Many Americans are unable to comprehend that authorities would remove a threat with a frame-up. But far worst has occurred. Francesco Cossiga, a former President of Italy, revealed that many of the bombings in Europe during the 1960s, 70s, and 80s, which were blamed on communists, were in fact “false flag” operations carried out by the CIA and Italian intelligence in order to scare voters away from the communist party. Cossiga’s revelations resulted in a parliamentary investigation in which intelligence operative Vincenzo Vinciguerra stated: “You had to attack civilians, the people, women, children, innocent people, unknown people far removed from any political game. The reason was quite simple: to force the public to turn to the state to ask for greater security.”

If democratic governments will murder innocents for political reasons, why wouldn’t they frame someone? Whether innocent or guilty, Strauss-Kahn has been framed in advance of his trial.

Dr. Paul Craig Roberts is the father of Reaganomics and the former head of policy at the Department of Treasury. He is a columnist and was previously an editor for the Wall Street Journal. His latest book, “How the Economy Was Lost: The War of the Worlds,” details why America is disintegrating.

Source

Where is the Antidote for the Poison in the Well?

Reflections in a Petri Dish – May 27, 2011

I was virtually leafing through a news gathering site this morning. I didn’t sleep last night. I had one of those riveting periods of integration with the one. It came as a result of relentless driving inwards and crying out. I was giving no quarter (grin) and I got what I was after, which is not always or even often the case but… I was intense. It paid off. I saw something that was very present but had been elusive to my inner eye. The power of the experience held me all through the night and it seemed only a short time before it was light out. Time was not playing by the usual rules. I had this happen on a drive from Italy. Hours went by like nothing and I was suddenly at my destination, with a speed that defied science and logic. I was impressed. My state of mind was severely altered at the time, not by any comestible but as a result of a series of supernatural experiences that preceded the journey; boy what a digression!

Anyway, I was virtually leafing through this site and, probably because of my state of mind, the experience was surreal; Texas (you don’t mess with Texas), backed off from the porno-bot pedophiles at TSA (tits slits and asses). NATO (nasty, arrogant, totalitarian, oligarchs) are bombing Libya because Gadhafi wants a transnational African currency. Various AIPAC psychos are frothing at the mouth, there’s another disinfo report on Iran about nuclear triggers and Egypt is opening the Rafah crossing this weekend. There was more. There is always more and it’s all massive change rumbling at all levels. What do you do?

I’m one individual. I’m part of a group conscious awareness of these apocalyptic times. We are, mostly, unarmed witnesses of, not only, global but galactic change. It is as if the whole system that we have known has turned into a lurching drunk, who is reeling across the landscape, acting out from the lowest common denominator of rage and acquisition fueled, intoxication. It’s a small house with a big drunk, people are looking to put some distance between themselves and this half conscious, mean drunk, bent on rapine and all those ill concealed lusts from the dark larder of the subconscious.

The drunk was more or less okay a few hours ago. He was charming, if a bit overbearing and he had an unpleasant way of brushing up against you, touching you, raising his eyebrows as if you might get the message. He’s got an IMF rape card so there is a lot of latitude. The bouncers can’t really throw him out because he is the system that employs them to bounce. Ordinarily he’s just a moderately offensive dickhead but now he’s got a load on. He’s got a load on because everything he was up to for so long will no longer support his weight. That’s why he’s lurching, besides being drunk on all kinds of unpleasant things.

He might have been okay once, stable and composed of ideals that most everyone would agree were in the best interests of the majority but some kind of personality change happened because he wouldn’t stop drinking. He morphed into an overblown caricature. He shit himself, lost his glasses and now he thinks if he just amps it up a bit he can move into a new dimension and the mental and emotional climate will adapt. He really should go to the bathroom and clean himself up but he’s drunk. He’s as pickled as The Queen Mother. You head off to the cemetery where the queen mother lies and you will find a collection of alkies with long metal straws inserted into the grave dirt looking for that truly dry martini.

You can’t get stabilized if you keep drinking. You have to dry out but that can be an extraordinarily painful affair. Visible traversed those swamps once. There’s nothing good going on down there. People who no longer care, hang out there with people who care far too much for all the wrong reasons and they’re all drunk. Somebody threw a party under pretense, which turned out to be about something else and it’s not a party anymore.

There are a lot of funny things going on. American Idol got grooved, country western, pop tart Barbie and George Strait Lite coming down the pipe. I actually enjoy ‘some’ of these people and they are all faces that are being molded for order, while ugly entertainment ops like 50 Cents worth of ugly are intruded into the mix. They give you decent normal youth and insert the uglies alongside. The point is separation. The point as George Harrison noted, is, “I, I, me, me, mine”

That’s your life buddy, not mine. I wonder how I am supposed to assimilate the good stuff from the bad. The system is now in a state of injury because some people want to have more than everyone else. There really is plenty for everyone but the people with too much have to have more.

Open a cantaloupe. I like melons. Look at all those seeds. Nature is abundant. You get more than you need all the time. There’s plenty for everyone. However, some people just want more and it’s more than that too.

The presentation of innocence and the corruption of it is a big part of the present game; hammer slammer and no justice in this world. Well, it’s all karma from my point of view; whatever you are into you are into and I am just banging on the universe to clean this shit up. I realize that I can’t personally clear it up and I realize that I generate some amount of garbage, which I’ll be recycling today when I travel in my car to the recycling center to do the right thing. I’ve got to keep my eye open for that drunk because he is on the highway too. Alcohol, no matter how you parse it, is a bigger killer than Fukushima. That is the kind of thinking that was behind Fukushima. I went there as a baby, the last time ugly force got dropped on a lot of people at Hiroshima and Nagasaki. I came in, in the aftermath, at about 6 months old and Japan was my first real opening into this world and my first five years.

I learned early that I was going to get the shit beat out of me. At one point, I painted a masterpiece of shit on the wall next to my crib; oh those early artistic urgings. I got more shit beat out of me for that effort but I do remember being proud of it. Maybe I was trying my hand at calligraphy? Over time it turns into a massage, which is much more preferable. I was willingly to learn and I still am. I don’t think any one person or group can fix this thing. I think people need to step away.

Scotty McCreery is a nice guy and a fine singer and reminds me of myself in that picture that sits at Visible Origami. They promote our finer aspirations and then they hammer in the Tim McGraw’s that support the wars and then they hammer in the rain of Beyonce Armageddon sex on you in the followup. You get a clean American Idol with a kiss on the cheek and then you send then all off to war against an enemy that you created for that purpose. Maybe some of you don’t follow my thought but when I see Tim McGraw with a black lead hat and no eyes leaning into a 17 year old kid, I see the devil behind all the things we don’t like about the world and ourselves.

Madonna has been replaced by Lady Gaga and the insolence of the moment wasn’t missed here. These are the people sending you to war. These are the people offering up the sacrifices for your dreams and aspirations; fresh and promising innocence, dropped like a slab of fish, with the minders in the shadows. And powerful people show up. Bono and The Edge appear with Reeve Carney in a Spiderman scenario and this is what we are up against. This is the soundtrack for police security nation. It’s all pop tarts and prisons because the manglers have usurped the reins of power in our world and that’s how it goes in ages of darkness. You can see it on your TV and you probably do.

I believe in the good I see and I look at all that ancient evil that is showcasing it for your doom and I feel sometimes a little like Gadhafi. He’s no saint but he he’s not stupid. Hey, it’s all a show. That is actually good news. It’s a production; it’s supposed to sweep you away. You are supposed to be captivated. Will you be? That’s what this apocalypse is all about. That’s the whole point. Which way will you go? Quo Vadis.

One thing for sure, you are here. You are where you are, right there in the Petri dish and the show continues. Keep in mind that every show has a beginning and an end. That should be the uppermost point in your mind. “He’s in it to win it” (grin).

End Transmission…….

Source

‘US Army may be liable for Diana death’

Press TV – May 27, 2011

The US military may have played a role in the 1997 death of Princess Diana as she was campaigning for a worldwide ban on landmines, says the author of The Murder of Princess Diana.

Noel Botham told Press TV that Princess Diana, during her visit to the US in 1997, succeeded in persuading former US President Bill Clinton to vote in favor of a global ban on landmines at the Oslo Conference, which was due to take place on the 19th of September of that year.

However, the idea did not appeal to US military officials and they knew that Clinton “would not change his mind with Diana alive,” said the author.

“There was enormous pressure from the military in America to get him (President Clinton) to stop that (the international treaty on a worldwide ban on landmines) and change his mind, enormous lobbying in the White House,” Botham added.

“Of course, after her death, 19 days later, Bill Clinton went to Oslo and voted against a ban on landmines,” he further explained.

The author of The Murder of Princess Diana also noted that in 1998, less than a year after Diana’s death, news media around the world tried to get the CIA, the FBI and the National Security Agency to release their papers on Diana’s death, which was to no avail.

“They (the CIA, the FBI and the National Security Agency) all came up with one answer; that they would keep back certain pages, 145 pages that would seriously jeopardize the security of the US,” Botham went on to say.

Meanwhile, a movie called Unlawful Killing caused quite a stir in this year’s Cannes Film Festival in France.

It is the story of the deaths of Princess Diana, Dodi Fayed and their driver Henri Paul, and was described by its director Keith Allen as “inquest into the inquest of Princess Diana.”

The film cannot be screened in the UK over ‘national security issues.’

Britain’s Princess Diana died early Sunday August 31, 1997 at a Paris hospital after sustaining internal injuries in a high-speed car crash.

MN/GHN/HRF

Source

Iran sanctions on Israeli firm are an embarrassment

Haaretz – May 27, 2011

The Ofer family started its shipping business in Haifa during the British Mandate era. With perseverance, resolve and business acumen the small agency grew into an economic empire. One of its scions, David, preferred to stay in public service and later became a police commander. His two brothers, Sammy and Yuli, bought merchant ships and tankers, expanded their fleet and spread their business over seas and continents.

Over the years the Ofer Brothers, reinforced by the family’s next generation, became an influential force in the Israeli economy. In the Ofer family’s business, the sale of a tanker for $8 million is a drop in the ocean, and the family chalks up the Americans’ objections to a misunderstanding. But its alleged sale of a ship to Iran evokes bewilderment and embarrassment.

The questions arising from it should be addressed not only to the Ofer Brothers but to Israeli officials and institutions – the Prime Minister’s Office; the ministers of defense, finance and foreign affairs; Military Intelligence, the Mossad and the navy. Where were they all when Israel was making a mockery of its own demands that the world fight Iran’s military nuclearization?

Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu portrays Iran as a threat to Israel’s survival. He champions an economic siege on it, as a last resort before an attack. While Netanyahu likens Tehran’s current rulers to Berlin’s on the eve of World War II, his own shortcomings have enabled a major Israeli corporation to circumvent the sanctions and trade with a satanic foe.

True, the used-ship business is characterized by layers of brokers and the concealing of the owner’s identity by flying another country’s flag. But for some reason, when Israel confronts the Karin A, Victory and other vessels operating on the Iran-Hezbollah-Palestine line, it manages to discover what’s hiding under the rug. But when it wants to make money, as in selling weapons to Iran during its war with Iraq, Israel knows how to close its eyes. The American suspiciousness is a natural outcome of this basic truth.

The Ofer family will try, with its lawyers and lobbyists, to settle its affairs with the administration in Washington, in a bid to remove the sanctions on the sanction breakers. But the Israeli authorities’ defective performance in this affair necessitates a thorough investigation, either by the state comptroller or a subcommittee of the Knesset Foreign Affairs and Defense Committee.

Source

Net immigration hits six year high in blow to Coalition

Tom Whitehead – Telegraph.co.uk May 26, 2011

Last year some 242,000 more people moved to the UK than left, after numbers leapt by around 45 per cent in just a year.

David Cameron has pledged to cut net immigration to the “tens of thousands” but the latest official figures show an upward trend in continuing instead.

And the rise has been partly driven by a sharp increase in the number of Eastern Europeans returning to the UK to look for work – a trend the Government’s recently imposed immigration cap cannot alter.

It has also been driven up by a 20 per cent fall in people emigrating, amid reports that many are put off by a rising cost of living abroad.

Separate figures, from the Office for National Statistics, showed one in five low-skilled jobs are now filled by migrants, fuelling concerns over jobs for British workers.

The quarterly review of immigration statistics also revealed the number of people granted settlement has increased by four per cent and asylum claims are up 11 per cent.

Some 344,000 people left the UK in the year to September, down 20 per cent in the 12 months to December 2008, according to the ONS.

But the number of migrants coming in to the UK remained constant at 586,000, taking net migration to 242,000, up from around 166,000 in mid-2009.

It is the fifth consecutive rise in net immigration, based on quarterly figures, over the last two years.

Damian Green, the immigration minister, said: “These statistics show that immigration was out of control thanks to the old system – that is why we have already introduced radical changes to drive the numbers down and we will shortly be consulting on a range of new measures.”

The Government introduced a cap on the number of migrants coming to the UK from outside the EU last month, as well as a crackdown on bogus students and those seeking to settle in the UK.

The ONS figures showed net migration – the number coming to the UK less the number leaving – of non-EU citizens rose by a third in the 12 months to September last year, up to 215,000 from 161,000 the previous year.

The number of non-EU migrants coming to the UK rose from 274,000 to 312,000 while the number leaving only dropped from 113,000 to 97,000.

But the number of migrants coming to the UK from the eight accession countries which joined the European Union in 2004 also rose significantly, up 72,000 in the 12 months to September last year from 45,000.

With a fall in those leaving from 57,000 to 29,000 over the same period, the flow of migrants switched from 12,000 leaving the UK to 43,000 arriving and is now at the same level seen in the year ending September 2008.

The number of migrants coming to the UK to study also continued to rise, up 30 per cent from 185,000 to 241,000.

Source

Comment – May 26, 2011

This is bad news at a time when the economy is stagnant and competition for jobs is fiercer than ever. All the more so when one considers that one-in-five low paid jobs is already done by an immigrant.

So why haven’t Cameron’s government been able to make good on pre-election promises to reduce the record levels of immigration that had occurred under New Labour?

Could it be that David Cameron’s team is reading from the same book as Tony Blair’s? Is the Coalition following the same instructions as its predecessors and talk about immigration being “out of control thanks to the old system” is merely a ruse?

Is systematic failure being used to disguise the fact that the Coalition is following exactly the same agenda on immigration?

Whatever politicians may say they intend to do once elected the same trend has been ongoing for decades now. No matter who was in power, high levels of immigration into an already overcrowded island have continued unchecked.

Margaret Thatcher pledged to reduce the number of immigrants as part of her 1979 election campaign. Yet the 1979 Conservative Party Manifesto’s promise of “firm immigration control for the future” proved as hollow as any promise made by politicians.

Unfettered immigration continued and only got worse under Tony Blair and his successor Gordon Brown, despite rising public disquiet.

Now David Cameron’s promises are proving as hollow as his predecessors. How long before people wake up to the fact that their political leaders are following the dictates of a hidden few, regardless of the electorate’s wishes or the country’s best interests?

Elizabeth 2 – Go Ripple Effect

20 Questions To Ask Anyone Foolish Enough To Believe The Economic Crisis Is Over

The Economic Collapse – May 26, 2011

If you listen to Ben Bernanke, Barack Obama and the mainstream media long enough, and if you didn’t know any better, you might be tempted to think that the economic crisis is long gone and that we are in the midst of a burgeoning economic recovery.  Unfortunately, the truth is that the economic crisis is far from over.  In 2010, more homes were repossessed than ever before, more Americans were on food stamps than ever before and a smaller percentage of American men had jobs than ever before.  The reality is that the United States is an economic basket case and all of these natural disasters certainly are not helping things.  The Federal Reserve has been printing gigantic piles of money and the U.S. government has been borrowing and spending cash at a dizzying pace in an all-out effort to stabilize things.  They have succeeded for the moment, but our long-term economic problems are worse then ever.  We are still in the middle of a full-blown economic crisis and things are about to get even worse.

If you know someone that is foolish enough to believe that the economic crisis is over and that our economic problems are behind us, just ask that person the following questions….

#1 During the 23 months of the “Obama recovery”, an average of about 23,000 jobs a month have been created.  It takes somewhere in the neighborhood of 150,000 jobs a month just to keep up with population growth.  So shouldn’t we hold off a bit before we declare the economic crisis to be over?

#2 During the “recession”, somewhere between 6.3 million and 7.5 million jobs were lost.  During the “Obama recovery”, approximately 535,000 jobs have been added.  When will the rest of the jobs finally come back?

#3 Of the 535,000 jobs that have been created during the “Obama recovery”, only about 35,000 of them are permanent full-time jobs. Today, “low income jobs” account for 41 percent of all jobs in the United States. If our economy is recovering, then why can’t it produce large numbers of good jobs that will enable people to provide for their families?

#4 Agricultural commodities have been absolutely soaring this decade.  The combined price of cotton, wheat, gasoline and hogs is now more than 3 times higher than it was back in 2002.  So how in the world can the Federal Reserve claim that inflation has been at minimal levels all this time?

#5 Back in 2008, banks had a total of 27 billion dollars in excess reserves at the Fed.  Today, banks have a total of approximately 1.5 trillion dollars in excess reserves at the Fed.  So what is going to happen when all of this money eventually hits the economy?….

#6 If the U.S. economy is recovering, then why are shipments by U.S. factories still substantially below 2008 levels?

#7 Why are imports of goods from overseas growing much more rapidly than shipments of goods from U.S. factories?

#8 According to Zillow, the average price of a home in the U.S. is about 8 percent lower than it was a year ago and that it continues to fall about 1 percent a month. During the first quarter of 2011, home values declined at the fastest rate since late 2008. So can we really talk about a “recovery” when the real estate crisis continues to get worse?

#9 According to a shocking new survey, 54 percent of Americans believe that a housing recovery is “unlikely” until at least 2014.  So how is the housing industry supposed to improve if so many people are convinced that it will not?

#10 The latest GDP numbers out of Japan are a complete and total disaster.  During the first quarter GDP declined by a stunning 3.7 percent.  Of course I have been saying for months that the Japanese economy is collapsing, but most mainstream economists were absolutely stunned by the latest figures.  So will the rest of the world be able to avoid slipping into a recession as well?

#11 Next week, Republicans in the House of Representatives are going to allow a vote on raising the debt ceiling.  Everyone knows that this is an opportunity for Republican lawmakers to “look tough” to their constituents (the vast majority of which do not want the debt ceiling raised).  Everyone also knows that eventually the Republicans are almost certainly going to cave on the debt ceiling after minimal concessions by the Democrats.  The truth is that neither “establishment Republicans” nor “establishment Democrats” are actually serious about significantly cutting government debt.  So why do we need all of this political theater?

#12 Why are so many of our once great manufacturing cities being transformed into hellholes?  In the city of Detroit today, there are over 33,000 abandoned houses, 70 schools are being permanently closed down, the mayor wants to bulldoze one-fourth of the city and you can literally buy a house for one dollar in the worst areas.

#13 According to one new survey, about half of all Baby Boomers fear that when they retire they are going to end up living in poverty.  So who is going to take care of them all when the money runs out?

#14 According to the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics, an average of about 5 million Americans were being hired every single month during 2006.  Today, an average of about 3.5 million Americans are being hired every single month.  So why are our politicians talking about “economic recovery” instead of “the collapse of the economy” when hiring remains about 50 percent below normal?

#15 Since August, 2 million more Americans have left the labor force.  But the entire period from August to today was supposed to have been a time of economic growth and recovery.  So why are so many Americans giving up on looking for a job?

#16 According to Gallup, 41 percent of Americans believed that the economy was “getting better” at this time last year.  Today, that number is at just 27 percent.  Are Americans losing faith in the U.S. economy?

#17 According to the U.S. Census, the number of children living in poverty has gone up by about 2 million in just the past 2 years, and one out of every four American children is currently on food stamps.  During this same time period, Barack Obama and Ben Bernanke have told us over and over that the U.S. economy has been getting better. So what is the truth?

#18 America has become absolutely addicted to government money. 59 percent of all Americans now receive money from the federal government in one form or another. U.S. households are now receiving more income from the U.S. government than they are paying to the government in taxes. Americans hate having their taxes raised and they hate having their government benefits cut.  So is there any hope that this will ever be turned around before disaster strikes?

#19 The combined debt of the major GSEs (Fannie Mae, Freddie Mac and Sallie Mae) has increased from 3.2 trillion in 2008 to 6.4 trillion in 2011.  How in the world is the U.S. government going to be able to afford to guarantee all of that debt on top of everything else?

#20 If the U.S. national debt (more than 14 trillion dollars) was reduced to a stack of 5 dollar bills, it would reach three quarters of the way to the moon.  The U.S. government borrows about 168 million dollars every single hour.  If Bill Gates gave every penny of his fortune to the U.S. government, it would only cover the U.S. budget deficit for 15 days.  So how in the world can our politicians tell us that everything is going to be okay?

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