Thursday, December 31, 2009

2000s

The decade that brought us Y2K and the growing uneasiness, among the more zanier elements of the population. It's the decade that gave us internet primacy and the birth of the professional internet. Incorporation of technology in our lifestyles reached seamless new heights. And the old dazzle of corporate television waned on, imploding into reality show obscurity.

Overall, it was a decade wrought by dramatics. There was glam in the rise of SUV Hummers and the jolt of the coming of age of gay acceptance. There was decadence in the lavishness of corporate pleasure and even greater deceit and pomposity in the great halls of power. There was terror and the aftershock and the aftermath from it we now know.

The rise of laptops and cell phones certainly changed us, for better or for worse, although I tend to believe the latter. And although the American nation spent the entire decade sitting in the den of treacherous wolves while being sabotaged in a top-down Ponzi scheme, a mild social evolution took place. Questions seemed more important than before. Authority never seemed so crooked and evidently rigged. The bad guys kept on winning, while most kept counting precious dollars shredded away on the rising prices of wheat, milk, corn and meat. Nothing could be taken as absolute anymore. Attitudes mellowed and some of the former 'rules' of the game no longer exist. Yet, while this instance produced certain positive change, there remain lamentable losses due to this new embodiment of Americana.

The peak and fall of the development of suburbia signnalled a new age and 'urban renewal' in the form of gentrification irked millions and uprooted thousands. A decade of lost opportunity and unfulfilled dreams was it in some ways. The shutting down of America and her proud business establishments was more than disheartening, gutwrenching really. Even worse, the intelligence of the nation faced continual insults and the movie industry's made-in-Hollywood trademark factory movie complex marched intellectual filmwork off the screen.

But not all I've mentioned was bad. Much good still rocked the '00s, it just got a little harder to find.

Nevertheless New Year's Eve promenades on and the passion, heartache and joy of the '00s will pass. The decade will continue in modern memory as a pivotal era in the history of mankind. But either way, its victores and pitfalls are now enshrined. May the 2010s carry on.

Wednesday, December 30, 2009

Enhanced: Security State

As the aftermath of the attempted Christmas Day plane bombing sizzles on, an internal debate is raging amongst populace and ruling class alike over the lessons learned by this foiled plot. While much of the political commentary provided by CNN, the New York Times and the BBC focuses on the security breaches by alleged hijacker Farouk Abdulmutallb, few have dared discuss the motivations behind the attack.

And in the wake of the hatched plan, the conversation turns to the failure of security. In evaluating this topic, however, the analyses given by the so-called "experts" fail to pass the bar.

With reports indicating that the Nigerian born student acted in response to U.S. bombings in Yemen in early December that killed nearly 100 (reportedly including many civilian deaths), no newscaster will discuss the importance of such motivation in preventing future similar attacks.

While President Obama announced a comprehensive TSA airport security review in both intelligence-related and physical screening procedures shortly after the attempted bombing, it is unlikely even with more restrictive procedures that the American public will be made any safer.

To pursue a response-activated strategy that is guided by the principle we must retroactively address possible threats by insulating ourselves with another 'layer' of security is pure fallacy. If anything, more invasive physical screening procedures for average Americans will distract from true threats. With a "stay-the-course" foreign policy continued into the 2010s, threats remain possible and likely.

It is clear terrorism became a political football long ago. But as it continues in a new era, there appears no end to the Democratic-Republican enforced use of it to scare the people, then coddle them in an effort to break their will. By discouraging simple freedoms and introducing new humiliating screening procedures, which are at best, invasive of privacy and morally dubious, the American government is clear in its message of retributive action against the People, who are evidently blameless in the intelligence security breach which occurred on Christmas Day.

After investigation, Farouk Abdulmutallab was actually on a terror-watch list but was not flagged before boarding his flight. Clearly, there was a failure of screening on the front line intelligence level, which remains the best tool for authorities in the modern War on Terror. However, when this very list does not serve its purpose and the suspect's fathers reported him to authorities over two months prior to the incident, questions arise as to the viability of international security. Some have even suggested Abdulmutallab was helped to board the plan without holding a passport, aided by a well-dressed and explanatory American. While unsubstantiated, it certainly adds to the questions of how Abdulmutallab passed through security and who may have assisted in the act.

Simply put, security is not perfect nor will it ever be close to it. It is especially true with an organization as inefficient as the federal government running it. To expect the government (honestly folks, only so limited) to protect every person pre-emptively from any violent act in any part of a giant nation of 300 million people is absurd and untenable.

Just imagine the attempt! Stationed police and screeners at every private business or public place, all in efforts to "prevent terror". How far does this faulty paradigm have to go? What type of sane society would ever accept this arrangement!?

Stereotypically, the government has again decided to collectively punish an entire nation for one failure of airport security in a foreign land. Clearly, the failure here occurred due to negligence on behalf of Dutch and Nigerian authorities, not those working at the TSA. Mind yhou, the whole incident even ended prior to the plane touching down in Detroit, Michigan. And at that, the heroes of the failed attempt at terror were in fact those who will now be punished retroactively.

Without recourse or even a frank public debate, it appears the sheltered security-obsessed screening bureaucrats will win the day with morally-misguided and further repressive screening. Passengers have to contend with possible passage of a federally-backed "Rules of Behavior" enforced in all airports and all planes nationwide, and perhaps internationally. As Peter Greenberg of CBS reports, the more extreme of the privately-implemented security reforms in recent days include provisions prohibiting passengers from accessing any carry-on items for a whole hour prior to landing.

As old Aunt Ethel will be scolded and shunted for trying to finish that last page of the chapter in that paperback romance novel, little time will be left to deal with real possible threats who've been flagged by intelligence communities.

Meanwhile, political commentators call for mandatory full-body image screening for each person boarding aircraft in the United States, and this time with no "pat-down option". For those who are unfamiliar with full-body image scanning, the machine takes amazingly lifelike X-ray body photographs, seeing entirely through all clothes and producing a real nude image, with genitalia and facial images later blocked out from the generated picture.

Yet, it remains hard to believe agent Jim won't be looking even for a split second at grandma's kahoonies or little Tommy's rear. To assure against this possibility, the TSA has assured the American public no images are ever recorded and that all private parts are scrambled.

While it's likely there will be some compromise on this highly debatable front, security will be tightened in upcoming times and the American people will face greated frustration with the TSA. Fronted by the Department of Homeland Security as a self-appointed agency, the TSA is too laughably a creature of its own creation. 'Til that creature seriously catches up with reality and the reckoning of Americans, it is assured to drown in its own inept mediocrity and ineffectiveness.

Friday, November 20, 2009

No Justice, No Peace

As thousands of University of California students protested at campuses state-wide this week in opposition to the now-passed the 32% tuition hike, the University has ignored student cries for a more reasonable dialogue and tactful approach. And in even furtherance of their seething contempt for freely gathering students, they watched and even tipped off police to students who engaged in political acts by freely demonstrating their First Amendment rights.

With hundreds of students arrested to Sahil Kapur of RawStory reports that 52 were arrested yesterday at UC-Davis and cordoned off to a According to Kapur, one PhD. activist claimed a 19-year old student protester was held in solitary confinement and physically abused and emotionally traumatized by police. All of the arrests at the behest of the university were allegedly done without the simple courtesy of the university informing their parents or making any effort to provide practical help.

While such movements as "Occupy California" and others have pushed for real political student action, the institution would not simply allow it. While "walk-outs" and "sit-ins" were popular and even in some places common occurrences in America in the 1960s and 70s and before, it has now become a cause extreme and reason for suspicion and harassment.

But no matter what the university may do, or may wish to do, it will not change the path University of California students, while small in proportion, may be choosing to attempt change in their small world. And without compromise from the power-wielding faction of the institution, it is highly unlikely a more compromising attitude will be one students will have.

The vast amount of young people of this country are not stupid, or liable to be taken as fools, but only if they are treated so will they be all the more eager to show the fool of the other.

So let this message be carved into every school's weighty cornerstone, that these scrawls of students are not without reason or certainly not to be taken lightly. For without students, there is no university and without the educated seeking an education, little can be expected of these once grand institutions.

Thursday, November 19, 2009

Rep. Brady Grills Geithner

Congressman Kevin Brady of Texas Questions Secretary of Treasury Tim Geithner on November 19, 2009.

Tuesday, November 3, 2009

Carbon Police: Intendants Extreme

It comes as no shock that every centralized national government in history longs for a way into the lives and business of their citizens, often at great expense. In imperial France under the reign of Louis XIV, the "Sun King", the royalty discovered a new way to control the masses. Systematically, the king transformed a method of replacing local autonomous town councils with hand-picked 'Intendants' that usurped the former rulers' stature and powers.

After castrating the force of town councils whose existence based itself on long standing post-feudal tradition in France, these stand-ins gave the royalty new unspeakable power to micromanage the breadth of a nation.

And with the passage of H.R. 2454, the "American Clean Energy and Security Act of 2009" (better known as the Waxman-Markey Bill), a little noticed provision may introduce that principle into action.

Alexis de Tocqueville, famed French dignitary and historian, in The Old Regime in the French Revolution blames the system of enabling centralized non-appeal-able decision making for not only the collapse of the regime, but also for the failure of the French Revolution to cement its original goals. As traditional autonomous politicking had been severed in France for several generations before the outbreak of revolution, Tocqueville theorizes that the Intendant system reaped irreparable harm on the French political-social order.

To create "green jobs," the new bill which requires the U.S. to reduce carbon dioxide emissions by 80% by 2050. To enforce these new proposed limits and collect payments of "carbon tax credits" from every home and business in America, the federal government will have to hire hundreds of thousands if not well over a million "environmental" inspectors whose influence will eventually reach to anything in America bigger than a doghouse.

Radio host and political analyst Alex Jones in his new film Fall of the Republic highlights this issue as a new attempt to force greater unnecessary government surveillance and intrusion into people's homes.

Provisions of H.R. 2454 call for each municipality in America down to a village (usually consisting of less than a thousand citizens) to employ at their own expense, a federally tied city planner along with an environmental planner to have sole decision making authority to approve or deny the legal live-ability of any construction or pre-existing structure. With this arrangement, the ultimate Intendant now arrives.

City planners have been staples of major cities for decades. But, when serving only the city government, their actions must meet the standard of the local people. This formula in itself is often the most significant power and resource of a community. In contrast, replacing well-accounted for city officials with federally-instructed implants will only serve to undermine local autonomy in America. And such was the exact intent of placing Intendants in place of local councils in imperial France.

First, university trained environmental planners and urban studies majors go to tiny villages and towns in isolated flats and ridges to instruct generations-rooted locals how best to develop their streets, buildings and insulate their homes. While honest efforts to construct a better infrastructure and sustainable environment should be lauded and pursued, federally mandating and supervising of these pursuits could create uniformed and disastrous effects. For many villages without one paid municipal employee, even financing this helpful yet unneeded regime will strain budgets, stymie diversity and ultimately hamper innovation.

And a 'city planner' would be the first for starts. Next, a presiding mayoral Intendant or even a uniform system of Intendant city councils in cities nationwide could constitute the new plan.

Jones points out in Fall of the Republic that the main agenda of the climate-change bills comes to its insistence on using federally trained watchers, spies if you will, to further regulate and weaken the power of the American people. As obscure as it may sound, this sinister provision of the cap and trade legislation in efforts to "build a green economy" may permanently regulate and even possibly destroy the very economy it promises to save.

In regulating only carbon and not the true environmental disasters which presently face us (ie. contamination of water, nuclear proliferation and genetically modified food), the cap and trade bill lacks any real solution and only exposes itself as another clever Ponzi scheme brainstormed by America's saviors at Goldman Sachs.

In this heavily politicized and emotionally charged subject often interpreted as either being for or against the environment through a simplified myth, we must remember that while putting limits on elements like carbon and oxygen may sound environmentally helpful, these elements themselves are the building blocks of human life. To begin a massive national, if not soon to be global system, of element regulation in a day where registered corporations own the seeds of life, it is no farce to say that ironically life is under attack with an arm twisting Intendant seizing and twisting the dagger of control.

Tocqueville warned much about centralization of power and in his masterpiece Democracy in America identified local autonomy as the force behind free and equal society in America. To him, the Intendants of France gutted a once-apt group of independent localities and forever severed the French people's institutional ability to rule themselves. For even after the Revolution, France forever centralized and transformed could never return to the egalitarianism which straddled the burgeoning of the modern world.

In America, similar circumstances beg the future's fate. The questions remains if this moment of Intendant does come to pass, once the People realize, will it be too late?

Rep. Scalise Questions Gore, Cap and Trade Scam

House testimony on climate change in January 2009.

Monday, November 2, 2009

Pakistanis Harangue Clinton, Reveal U.S. Imperialism

When Secretary of State Hillary Clinton visited Pakistan late last week for a three-day public relations tour, upon meeting with leaders of Pakistani society a general outburst of anger and incredulity became desperately apparent.

When pressed by one Pakistani whether a U.S. drone attacks violate the judicial process and qualify as terrorism, Clinton carefully paused and relayed, "No I do not." The Star Tribune reports a drone attack killed nearly 100 civilians in Peshawar earlier last week.

Another man respectfully remarked, that Pakistanis feel they are fighting America's war. Clinton could offer little sympathy after a Washington Post article intimated Obama very well may send an addition 15,000 U.S. troops to the Afghanistan-Pakistan border region where Al-Qaeda terrorists are suspected of hiding.

Moreover, with the announcement yesterday of the pullout of Afghan presidential candidate Abdullah Abdullah of the Nov. 7 retrial "election" after massive vote-fraud perpetuated by President Hamid Karzai was discovered, public legitimacy of U.S. interference in the region is reaching an all-time low. Little hope the partisan-politique smash-up Mrs. Clinton could offer. Instead of attempting true diplomacy, her style of negotiation only offers ultimatums and forced partnerships as acceptable solutions in working with other nations.

Most notably, famed Pakistani journalist Sana Bucha of GEO-TV interviewed Secretary of State Clinton. The Star Tribune reports that she scolded Clinton, instructing er that, "It is not our war, it is your war [...] You had one 9/11, we are having daily 9/11s in Pakistan."

Sadly, western mainstream media marginalized Bucha's heroic stand by only vaguely identifying her as "a woman."

Clinton did not participate much better as conversation indicates. The Star Tribune noted she tersely replied to passionate concerns over extrajudicial U.S. surprise drone executions. Attempting to allay worries, Clinton could only remarked that, "there is a war going on."

These real concerns can no longer be marginalized as people around the globe are now screaming for state leaders to recognize and address these grave inequities. For a great nation who in the past aimed to take the moral high ground, that same concept, now in perverted form, is used to justify mass-executions of innocent bystanders. In some twisted sort of morality, even the unfathomably evil is fair game.

Ron Paul on Corporatism

Congressman Ron Paul (R) of Texas lectures Larry King on corporatism, managed capitalism and free markets. From CNN's Larry King Live, Sunday, November 1.

Thursday, October 29, 2009

Predator Drone: License to Kill

The Predator drone aircraft is unquestionably one of the deadliest of all new U.S. military machines. Soaring thousands of feet above the clouds without making hardly a peep, its use in Iraq and in particular Afghanistan has shown its extraordinary might.

Controlled remotely in places like military bases outside Las Vegas, Nevada, the unmanned vehicle has become one of the most agile in covertly tracking and killing the enemy with precision-guided accuracy. Its awesome power for destruction has dazzled military planners and defense contractors. Those on the ground however, who feel its wrath are among the most unsuspecting and explainably so sometimes due to the complete ignorance caused by innocence.

Its use along the Afghanistan-Pakistan border won praise for disarming supposed jihadic extremists and spiked heated criticism for blameworthy actions that repeatedly result in scores of deaths of helpless civilians.

And in these horrifying and strikingly unjust events, new questions are arising as to the legality of aircraft operations predicated on such premises of preemptive strike. RawStory reports that the head of the UN department on Extrajudicial Executions Philip Alston criticized the United States' use of Predator drones in Afghanistan. He explained that, "The onus is really on the United States government to reveal more about the ways in which it makes sure that arbitrary extrajudicial executions aren't in fact being carried out through the use of these weapons."

The Predator drone made its first active appearance in the United States in early 2009 when NORAD began U.S.-Canada border patrol exercises in the sparsely populated region between Manitoba, North Dakota and Minnesota. While it is not reported if these drones have strike capability, common sense would infer if not, to add that feature would not pose great difficulties.

The Predator is a silent killer, essentially an experimental weapon used much as the new Luftwaffe fighter planes that bombed Guernica during the Spanish Civil War. With little research on the Predator's implications, its bounds for proper legal civilian patrol use hang in limbo. However, the UN's astounding report gives legal precedent to investigate claims of predatory abuse in extrajudicial summary executions. To debate this so-called "off-limits" topic will only allow the People decide what's truly best in public use of these towering observant strikers.

Predators need not prey on Afghans or whoever for that matter as their touted "successes" almost ensure wider future use. In arming our technology we must be certain our justice does not become overzealous, and our strengths do not become our weaknesses.

It is imperative that the question of Predator drones be engaged and their wasteful and abusive actions ended.

Wednesday, October 28, 2009

Defense Bill: Waste to the Core

Today, President Barack Obama lauded the congressional passage of a $680 billion defense spending bill as a shining example of cutting waste in government. But rather than talk about its entirely unnecessarily bloated price tag, he touched on the impressiveness of truly menial cuts in defense spending.

Meanwhile, funding for wars in Iraq and Afghanistan skyrocket as well over $200 billion has become the standard yearly expenditure, nearly one-third of all defense dollars go to fortify occupations there. In addition, much of the remaining tainted funny money will be used to prop up the overstretched U.S. military presence worldwide.

Currently, the U.S. has over 700 military installation in over 130 nations. These occupations include such notable allies as Great Britain, France, Germany, Japan, South Korea, Colombia, Italy and Saudi Arabia. According to famed historian and Japanese-American foreign policy expert Chalmers Johnson, thus far only the Philippines, Spain and in 2009 Ecuador, are the only nations which have quite literally expelled American bases and troops.

Strangely enough the bill includes a hate crime provision making it a federal offense to assault someone based on gender, race or sexual orientation and another provision which effectively denies Guantanamo Bay captives entry into the United States and ensuring its continued existence. These addendum so obviously reveal the sharply quixotic "partisan" divide gripping the pigheadedly unthoughtful and downright arrogant ruling class.

To call such an atrociously wasteful bill a cost saving measure, a "victory" for America is a bold faced lie.

Sure, it may cut out the extreme, but with President Obama poised to send another 40,000 'over the top', this exaggerated claim only will foretell the real spending crisis awaiting the U.S. military and ultimately, the American People.

Tuesday, October 27, 2009

Dithered Dictation

When General Stanley McChrystal first asked fora second massive troop surge, this time to send 40,000 plus to Afghanistan, the shock of such an astoundingly serious announcement begged for a pause. And so President Obama deferred to respond ilico. And to everyone's relief, our commander-in-chief thoughtfully requested a wider review for American policy in Afghanistan and the greater region.

However, that review that continues today echoes its own presence in reports as largely that of a military nature that neglects the importance of diplomatic and cultural centered efforts.

At that time, in mid-September 2009, President Obama reassured the war-weary public a new plan would be afoot within "a matter of weeks." Yet, as more heated war cries came from the more bigoted tics in Congress, the semblance of strategy the executive desperately sought to hatch.

Upon reports in early October from a BBC journalist that the decision had already been made to send 45,000 more Americans, White House Press Secretary Robert Gibbs denied the assertion and placated that a decision would be reached "in weeks." The end of summer and apex of autumn has respectively passed and crested and still no decision has been made.

With the onset of the November 7 Afghan "election," and holiday times approaching rapidly in America, a decision now to send tens of thousands of Americans into a brutal and desperately murderous situation could effectively incite massive uproar among the general public. By going with no strategy at all for 9 plus months and kicking the horribly bloodied can farther down the road, the War in Afghanistan entering its ninth year is about to unravel and explode.

Simply, President Obama's general strategy in every field has been to have no real strategy at all. And by campaigning on the promise to widen the War in Afghanistan to the tune of thunderous applause, the American people have given him and all future executives the power to wage war indefinitely. Rolling with the political winds without any root in principle or practice proves a dangerous experiment.

So detestable is the unlimited power ceded to the "well-meaning" authorities whose blatant lies and empty promises quell the masses into silent destitution. It is no mystery imperial wars and occupations are repeatedly unsustainable and inherently flawed beyond correction. And after a near decade of such fatal folly, there is no question an end will at eventually come. But when?

For now, that question lies in the hands of the warring purveyor of "peace".

Monday, October 26, 2009

Kinky for Governor

Just in time to add to the excitement surrounding the 2010 elections, Kinky Friedman has announced that he will run for Governor of Texas as a Democrat in 2010.

In a sharp worded statement, Friedman blasted Governor Rick Perry, accusing him of corruption and ill will during his ten-year span in office. Addressing criminal justice reform, DailyBeast reports Friedman charged that, "He fast-tracked the execution of this innocent guy, Cameron Todd Willingham. That’s blood on his Christian hands [...] There are plenty of innocent people in this corrupt justice system, but Rick is more concerned with protecting that system."

Now that puts some spunk into a race which so far has been a dead-winded uninspiring image-conscious campaigning of Governor Perry and U.S. Senator Kay Bailey Hutchinson. Both Republicans are well known to be deeply connected to the neo-conservative political machine.

Kinky, who garnered 13% of the gubernatorial vote in 2006 as an independent, won fame for his trademark humorous style and stature, often adorned by a signature black cowboy hat and a protruding unlit cigar. Richard "Kinky" Friedman first won recognition in the 1960s and 1970s as a country western musician and humorist. His most popular outfit, the Texas Jewboys, cultivated renown for their whimsically satirical fun-loving tunes.

Kinky the politician, a self-styled populist holds moderate views based on fiscal responsibility, the promotion of alternative fuels, combating political corruption and advocating personal freedom. During the 2006 Texas Gubernatorial debates he repeatedly called for the legalization of gambling on games of chance in Texas.

Earlier this year, Kinky divulged his interest in running for Governor in 2010 when he implied in an interview that celebrity actor Al Franken's close win over incumbent Norm Coleman to take a U.S. Senate seat in representation of Minnesota proved the ability for any "nobody" as himself to run and even win.

And so Kinky will do so. It is unclear what other ambitions could lay wake in Kinky's improbable but very possible bid to the charred Texas Governor's Mansion. But one thing is for sure, Kinky is in the race and his passionate vision for the future of Texas will at last become apparent.

Thursday, October 22, 2009

TASER Admits Torture

For the first time since its founding, TASER announced yesterday to police departments nationwide the danger of using the TASER stun-gun on people's chest cavities and torso. In a shocking reversal, TASER's admission is further proof that TASER as a non-lethal weapon is untested and unfit for law enforcement use.

TASER now recognizes for the first time the danger of its product, which according to RawStory, Amnesty International reports has caused over 350 deaths since 2001. In classic gaffe fashion, RawStory investigates that TASER's statement warned, "When possible, avoiding chest shots with ECDs (Electronic Control Devices) avoids the controversy about whether ECDs do or do not affect the human heart." Seemingly someone got the message at TASER that their product is just a bit dangerous.

In a slew of high profile taserings since 2007, America has witnessed the tasering of a University of Florida student asking Senator John Kerry a question, a 12 year old boy being ran over and killed while on a bicycle as a Florida police officer attempting to perform a drive-by tasering, and a defiant 70 plus year old grandmother from Austin, Texas, all receiving near-deadly shocks throughout their bodies.

While the TASER devices are promoted as solutions to lethal arbitration with "non-lethal warfare", one has to ask, what did police do before 2000 when TASER wasn't around? Maybe they had to work a little harder in apprehending the few bad apples, but for the vast majority, the threat of TASER maiming or killing innocents is not worth the risk.

Louis Farrakhan exposes 9/11

Louis Farrakhan exposes 9/11

Wednesday, October 21, 2009

Iran: Genie of the Bottle

A blast from a suicide bomber in southeastern Iran last weekend ripped through a soccer stadium killing over 40 soldiers of the Iranian Revolutionary Guard, including two high ranking generals. RawStory reports top troop deputy General Nur-Ali Shushtari and General Mohammad-Zadeh of the local province were killed in the attack. It is the first known suicide bombing of its kind in Iran's history.

And while the Islamic Sunni terrorist group Jundallah, prominent around the Iranian-Afghan border, claimed credit for the attack, Iranian authorities confidently accuse the death strike as the results of a British and American covert operation. Interestingly enough, the attack contains all the hallmarks of a well-scoped highly organized and infiltrating scheme.

Meanwhile, Iranian officials met in Geneva yesterday with Western politicians in talks surrounding enrichment of uranium, which Iran maintains is a national right. Western offers included an unattractive Western-tied aid package for cheap uranium to be sent from the West to Iran, but what Iranians argue will compromise their national sovereignty. At the behest of war-baiting repetitive threats by the United States and others, Iran is in a tight situation yet ironically empowered by the same idiosyncrasies which threaten to destroy them.

In early 2008, President Ahmadenijad announced the "end of the American Empire" after it became clear America's economic superiority was slipping away. And not to forget, after a devastating seven successive years of international wars and the continuation of decades of post-WWII occupation in Europe, Asia and around the globe.

Now it appears Iran is poised to bank on Ahmadenijad's prediction and may not want to sign away precious energy rights in perpetuity to settle what they view as a non-issue. To them, talk of secret weapons programs are only the grim specter of death of a war-hawking West. Iran will do everything to assert its peaceful right to efficient energy.

Yet, there remains no doubt the recent surprise attack does not help move Iran to an imposed settlement that would be clearly on the West's terms.

Iran will remain independent and despite a recently passed investment boycott, essentially an all-out embargo on Iran by the United States, Iran is ever emboldened to assert its place as a respected equal among nations. And with the Western propaganda for war on the wane, Iran may well receive qualified support from the West bloc's more peaceful and sensible nations.

Covert operations are known to go back in Iran as far back as 2005 in recent times and in the larger scheme, back to the early 1950's. Yet this high profile assassination only underscores the range and intensity of the underground war. In intimidation of Iran, these chilling attacks and direct interferences in internal affairs have tempered leadership and prepared them for more hard-nosed bouts ahead.

Even as tensions grow, a sweet calm approaches and hope remains for a true peace. A lasting peace will continue to be elusive and perhaps even impossible given the current bully-style intimidation exuded by ever self-asserting nations. Still yet, a temporary pause may expose obvious contradictions and bold lies to bring in a more egalitarian era of true international cooperation and peace.

Tuesday, October 20, 2009

Forever Young

Last Saturday marked a day of nationwide protest against U.S. interventionist policy abroad. Groups gathered in a plethora of cities to protest the current two wars which mindlessly continue after the Bush/Cheney PR-billboard was painted over.

The numbers of participants limited, criticism abounds. Critics' vocalizations however tend only to mock and contribute to the sadly successive procession of co-opting the silent majority.

For those who think critically and can recognize this pattern of deceit, an open book of possibilities will follow and enable them to attempt with certainty an answer to these trying desperate questions. And when these ideas are leaked and disseminated into the general cultural psyche, there can be no box big enough in which to contain its expansive influence.

And those who doubt our belittled passionaires of history and truth, they too soon will become overwhelmed by the boundless tide of revelation and swept away to equally righteous conclusions.

Saturday, October 17, 2009

Moscow, Washington Spar

In a continuation of Cold War rivalry, on Thursday the United States and Russia exchanged a slew of rhetorical blows over what appears to be U.S. plans for a Missile Defense System in Ukraine and Georgia. Russian Deputy Foreign Minister Sergei Rybakov announced that the United States’ secret plans to install the proposed system would threaten global stability and peace.

Mr. Rybakov‘s comments came in a mere month after the U.S. scrapped plans to build a Missile Defense System in Europe with a massive radar and base in the Czech Republic and the installation of ten nuclear missile interceptors in Poland. While not reported in the American press, an overwhelmingly majority of Poles and Czechs polled vehemently opposed plans to station U.S. soldiers accompanying the system within their borders.

The news from Russia plays even as a surprise to Americans as high level government and military officials have secretly hatched the plan to keep alive the Reaganite dream of ”Star Wars.” And to no surprise, Secretary of Defense Robert Gates is one of the program’s greatest champions.

Not unlike in 1997 when President Clinton voiced support for missile defense in newer NATO countries in Central Europe, the surprise revelation could be the beginning of a long, drawn out process that could very well lead to great U.S. intervention and troop occupations in the world.

Russia asserts it can call some shots. And considering that its foreign policy is not suicidal and logical for their purpose, perhaps it would be a good idea to listen and heed their warnings.

Russian ministers spoke out in protest of the expansion of the U.S. radar and missile systems into non-NATO nations, and in general, the expansion of U.S. military bases.

So far, the U.S. leadership only turned a deaf ear and so much like the debacle in Central Europe, have begun to lay a stone wall. Yet, it is becoming increasingly obvious that not listening will no longer be an option.

Friday, October 16, 2009

Social Security: Dead or Alive

Today brought a shocking announcement that for the first time since 1975, Social Security will not give out payments which account for inflation and further devaluation of the U.S. dollar.

Social Security continues as the worst performance out of any government tax and subsidy plan that exists. The saddest part is that millions of Americans are constantly giving their federal taxes to support themselves in retirement. There remains no question that a devalued dollar and a hyper-inflated economy is poised to completely master the system.

Al Gore promised in 2000 to puts Social Security in a "lock-box." But since then, Social Security has hardly played any role in the political debate. No doubt, it deserves criticism for its evident flaws and dubious practices.

When introduced in 1935, Social Security taxes accounted for only a fraction of a percent of tax on a citizen's hours of labor. Social Security requires each American to have a Social Security issued-number to hold a job, and gives each American a "special number" tied to all financial, health and other transactions they will make in their life.

Besides the point, President Barack Obama showed his disregard for the People's liberty when after laundry-listing America's problems he derided that, "after we deal with all of that, then we'll start to look at Social Security."

It is now common knowledge across America that Social Security is in a crisis and that with the aging of the "Baby-Boomers" generation, current taxpayers (with a decreased workforce of 5 million in the past year) will hardly be able to pay for their parents, much less enjoy any benefits themselves.

It is doubtful Social Security reform will come, rather it'll continue as a broken system with devalued purchasing power and an ever decreasing credibility. When confronted honestly, FDR's promise to America is looking more like a purposely-made mistake.

Thursday, October 15, 2009

45,000 to Afghanistan

Yesterday, the BBC broke the story that United States President Barack Obama has already decided to send 45,000 more U.S. troops to Afghanistan according to an unidentified source of the British government. That would push U.S. presence in Afghanistan to well over 110,000 soldiers, an increase from the 10,000 who overthrew the Taliban in 2001, and an increase from the 40,000 who were stationed there in 2008.

While White House Press Secretary Robert Gibbs denied this claim, this potential decision would put the number of U.S. troops occupying both Iraq and Afghanistan in 2010 at an astounding 260,000. At the height of troop levels under former President George W. Bush, there was a maximum of 180,000 soldiers in the two nations.

The jury has spoken, but where is the judge?

Ron Paul: Saving Face in Afghanistan

Congressman Ron Paul of Texas with his weekly "Texas Straight Talk" address on October 12, 2009.

Wednesday, October 14, 2009

Free Speech: Pre-Crime

As America stands at the 220 year benchmark of the codification of free-speech as a human right, many wonder whether this right as recognized by the United States Constitution will survive the 21st century. The idea of banning free speech in America is no longer a thing of conspiracy theory as recent events prove.

Images of Americans being forcibly removed from townhalls held on healthcare for simply asking questions of their elected representatives presents our current dilemma. Even worse, in double retaliation, the cable news networks barrage these same Americans for speaking out. After all, recent polls show that a clear majority do not want the government healthcare plan. Most simply do not believe any so-called reform can truly lower costs and improve healthcare nationwide.

Yet, with even greater sheaths of terror, we may look upon the notable protesters at the G-20 Summit in Pittsburgh in September. For merely exercising their human right to free speech they were gassed and used as guinea pigs for such controversial non-lethal weapons as LRAD (Long Range Acoustic Device) which blasts sirens at over 160 decibels, proved to cause permanent hearing damage and in some cases cellular damage. Without question, all of this was done with the explicit aim of neutralizing protests and killing any remnant of free speech.

In 2008, a group known as the RNC 8 made national headlines after being pre-emptively arrested and charged in Minneapolis, Minnesota, after federal investigators and prosecutors accused them of plotting to incite riot in order to commit terrorist acts during the 2008 Republican National Convention in St. Paul.

The evidence? Police claimed bags of urine as proof that they planned to disrupt the RNC despite the clear facts that it was protected by a slew of highly trained national security teams including the FBI, CIA, DEA, local and state police, U.S. Marshalls, the BCA (Bureau of Criminal Activiy) and countless other block-op groups trained in military sedition and execution. The absurd claims were later thrown out of court despite attempts to prosecute the protestors under provisions of the state-wide Minnesota PATRIOT Act. Even the bags of urine turned out to be nothin more than the running of the wild imaginations of police provocateurs.

As a notable protest group, the "infamous" RNC 8's only crime was to advocate peaece and enact their human right to free speech to alert others. And if such an act can qualify as "pre-crime" and arrests may be made before any acts are committed, then isn't free speech in danger of becoming a crime? Then isn't everyone, no matter what they do, possibly liable to become a criminal?

Only by mass distortion are such paradigms acceptable.

The new G.I.V.E. Act (Generations Invigorating Volunteerism and Education Act), signed into law by President Obama in late April 2009 contains provisions which confirm this subtle yet real arrangement. Under Section 125 of the G.I.V.E. Act, those serving in nationally approved civil service positions a list of prohibited activities are given. Among these are:

"attempting to influence legislation, organizing or engaging in protests, petitions, boycotts, or strikes, impairing existing contracts for services or collective bargaining agreements, engaging in partisan political activities, or other activities designed to influence the outcome of an election to any public office, [and even]engaging in religious instruction, [and] conducting worship services."

While the G.I.V.E. Act may seem obscure, it is only one piece in completing a carefully constructed puzzle to tyranny. Before more legislation attempts similar conditions in broader settings, it is essential to recognize we stand at the crux of free speech. Free speech can no longer be tossed around as a "political issue." In a free society, it is a human right, and that in itself is undeniable.

We are entering a bold phase of humanity where pre-crime notions of Orwell and Huxley now breathe.

Monday, October 12, 2009

Chavez Rips Obama, U.S. Imperialism

Venezuelan President Hugo Chavez responded today to U.S. President Barack Obama being named the 2009 winner of the Nobel Peace Prize.

In classic stoicism, Chavez asked, "What has Obama done to deserve this prize? The jury put store on his hope for a nuclear arms-free world, forgetting his role in perpetuating his battalions in Iraq and Afghanistan, and his decision to install new military bases in Colombia." According to Reuters, he continued that, "For the first time, we are witnessing an award with the nominee having done nothing to deserve it: rewarding someone for a wish that is very far from becoming reality."

Chavez as a detractor is not alone as many world leaders from President Ahmadenijad from Iran and Fidel Castro of Cuba criticized the Nobel Committee's selection for the peace prize.

Chavez went on to provide a poignant analogy, noting that awarding President Obama the Nobel Peace Prize is equivalent to giving a prize to a baseball pitcher who merely boasts that he will win 50 games in a year. And for once, perhaps the American people vastly agree with Mr. Chavez's outspoken position.

Cap and Trade Farce

A video produced by MacIver Institute highlights the problems of cap and trade tax legislation's goal of decreasing CO2 emissions by 80 percent.

Friday, October 9, 2009

President Obama Joins Henry Kissinger: Nobel Prize

President Barack H. Obama today joined an elite club with a suprisingly paradoxical paradigm. Yes, that's right, Barack Obama was awarded the Nobel Peace Prize admist the U.S. occupation of Iraq, which has continued for 6+ years unceased, the U.S. occupation of Afghanistan, which has continued for 8 years in utter chaos, and in an international atmosphere that is formally and aggressively provoking a confrontation with embattled Iran.

And the peace prize goes to...

the man leading a country consumed with two wars,
and perhaps in pursuit of another,
and without much public legitimacy,
with no end in sight.

It seems somewhat of a paradox, but then look at some of the former Nobel Peace Prize winners like Henry Kissinger, whose escalation of interventionist U.S. policy in southeast Asia garnered well-deserved hate for his actions across America. Nevertheless, the leaders who falter, know it, but will not change it or speak out against out are lauded as saviors to all of our grave misfortunes.

Over 1 million people have died in Iraq since the 2003 invasion. These include nearly 5,000 U.S. combat deaths, not including the equal proportion of casualties sustained by private military contractors. The total number of Afghans dead in the war in Afghanistan is untracked and unknown, although best estimates put it in the tens of thousands range. That occupation has continued unabated since October 2001. And not only did the recent U.S. occupation pose challenges, but Afghanistan has withstood the increasing pressure of the U.S. and Russian interests since the late 1970s. Meanwhile, international sanctions against Iran seem inevitable, and constant rumours portend an Israeli or American strike.

When asked the reason for these military interventions, these open-ended occupations and military industrial schemes based on the idea of "white man's burden", the exalted leaders categorically reply with little candor or courage to speak and act on the truth. Instead, tepidness and "bi-partisanship" in feeling out political waters simply mars the ability to make informed decisions and conscious choices about the right thing to do.

Instead of focusing on what's best for the American People, we all too often focus on who's up or down in the popularity contest of figures and cliques. If peace and freedom were easy to obtain, it'd be no problem to elect a new figurehead and the next day we'd be free and separated from the shock and horror that's surrounded us for the past decade. But that is not the case and rather freedom is something to be fought for, admired, and contested for on all grounds.

Maybe the Nobel Peace Prize will make President Obama a little more conscientious about his decisions on the battlefield, particularly when his Secretary of Defense Robert Gates told press that coming out of Afghanistan is not an option. But maybe, the good thing out of this contradictory occurrence is that the American people are really the ones being lauded and encouraged, perhaps so much so that this stark contradiction may move them to action to oppose the proclaimed hero's war policies which every day are becoming more obviously in defect and undesirable.

It is unclear where this odd gift of admiration will lead, but one thing's for sure, this strange fruit is nothing new.

Thursday, October 8, 2009

Contempt for America, American Patriots

Yesterday in Rochester, New York, dozens of people gathered for an anti-war march protesting the escalation of war in Afghanistan. While these American patriots attempted to be heard and took brave steps to assert their First Amendment and human rights of free speech, little could be done to stop the contempt-filled police who showed little regard for the rule of law.

After brutally beating and slamming several young protestors' faces into a concrete sidewalk, the police have the audacity to tell one young American he is being arrested "for swearing."



The protests will continue nationwide on Saturday, October 17 as groups across several major cities will be holding anti-war demonstrations.

Wednesday, October 7, 2009

Technology without Reason: DHS Plans to Scan Bodily Functions

In the strangest yet predictable twist in the eight year long Department of Homeland Security saga, CNN reports that the DHS is planning to enact the use of bodily function scanners in selective airports in two short years. This high-tech surveillance initiative which RawStory.com reports has been dubbed FAST (Future Attribute Scanning Technology) seeks to measure such functions as personal heartbeat, eye movement and even muscle twitch data that would be compiled into a fused database used for screening purposes. This sort of lie detector would then place travelers through the appropriate screening process levels according to the perceived threat they could pose. Hence, if an extrapolation of the data reaches conclusions that a person may be in some way nervous or uncomfortable, any accusation of that could be considered probable cause for futher investigation and detention.

While government officials are lauding FAST as a way to combat terrorism and get closer to isolating unruly flyers as potential threats, the program has little scientific value. It is a mere tool to gather information that never will qualify as conclusive reason for needed interrogation or detention. It is simply absurd that through detections of bodily functions one can determine another's sole intent in acting in a certain fashion. This scheme is no other than a data-mining operation launched for the sheer purpose of getting more information on citizens, information which may be used after the fact to stipulate and accuse of them of wrongdoing and misconduct.

These sort of guilty-until-proven-innocent paradigms are dangerous to liberty and a direct violation of innate human rights. The creation of a science of "microexpressions" is a precursor and a promoter of pre-crime conviction and an evil that defies logic itself. The Orwellian Department of Homeland Security's continued march toward fascism is a crime of grand proportions and a farce of security.

Tuesday, October 6, 2009

Protestors, Sheehan Arrested Outside White House

Yesterday, dozens of protestors were arrested outside of the White House on Pennsylvania Avenue in Washington D.C. during a street action orchestrated to hand-deliver a letter to President Obama endorsing ending the wars in Afghanistan and Iraq. Among those arrested was famed "Peace Mom" Cindy Sheehan whose son Casey died in Iraq in 2004.

Protestors chanted peace slogans and shouted past the gates toward the White House lawn in order to try to get the White House's attention. Sheehan, who gained notoriety in 2005 in her peace efforts at "Camp Casey" outside of former President Bush's Crawford, Texas ranch, chained herself to the White House gates standing defiantly and recited from the Internatonal People's Declaration of Peace. She wore a black shirt that read, "Greed Kills."

Many of the protestors dressed as U.S. military Afghan terror captives in uniform orange jumpsuits and dark black hoods covering their heads. Reminiscent of pictures from Guantanamo Bay, Abu Ghraib and other hotspots of American detainee torture and abuse, several protestors opted to keep wearing their dark wool hoods as Capitol Police cuffed and led them away.

Before protestors were led away, Capitol Police appeared on horseback with a ground police unit as well which quickly surrounded the impromptu protestors peacefully gathering on Pennsylvania Avenue. Thronged by black shirted squadrons, arrest was an evidently imminent priority for District of Columbia Police although no violations or incitements were being made.

While the mainstream media has declared the anti-war movement dead and mocked it for its dereliction of duty, this high-profile protest is a dim light in a dark abyss. As neither of these accusations hold true, it is only all the more evident that the high-handed intimidation tactics used by local and federal officials to stymie and stifle free speech is the real mockery and danger the media should highlight. The erosion of civil rights has reached a point in America where any political speech is now considered suspect and reasonable cause for arrest and harrasment. Until public outlook on this basic and genuine human freedom changes in favor of those who wish to voice when given no voice, a dark road of suppression and denial awaits us.

Coming Soon: Fall of the Republic

Fall of the Republic - Release Date October 21

Tuesday, September 29, 2009

End Game: Iran

American leaders took harsh tones today with Iran labelling thier routine mid-range missile test launches as "provocative" and of puposeful ill-timing to intimidate America and her "allies" in the region. However, this scenario laid out by such notables as White House Press Secretary Robert Gibbs to Secretary of State Hillary Clinton to a US Senator who commented in childish naiivity that "Iran stole a play from North Korea's playbook," could not be farther from the truth.

Iran is currently a beseiged nation. Both of the neighboring countries to the east and to the west, Afghanistan and Iraq are occupied countries with what many of thier inhabitants and a majority in the Middle East believe is merely a puppet American government.

Meanwhile, a practical embargo against Iran is fast gaining support and is overshadowing any of Iran's genuine attempts to constructively reach out to western nations. If an international embargo of grand porportions as advertised is adopted, the economic sanctions will clearly hurt the Iranian people's standard of living and only work to solidify a tyrant's authoritarian grip.

To make matters worse, buzz of a secret Israeli and/or American strike and in particular the suggestion of a nuclear strike against Iran last year by such high American officials as Hillary Clinton foreshadow a dark future.

With war and chaos surrounding Iran, it is no surprise that just maybe they want to prepare to defend themselves against imperial aggression already engulfing their part of the world.

Claims that Iran is working to develop weapons of mass destruction is unfounded and research hardly holds conclusive evidence. Much like the Iraq War pitch in 2002 and 2003, the possiblity of finding nuclear weapons in Iran is extremely skim but like with Iraq, the military industrial-media complex will not die. In its ongoing campaign, all American virtues are discarded and trampled upon and the grave casualties of its misadventure are life, liberty and the pursuit of happiness. These innate rights are forever put on hold.

It is up to America, not Iran to decide the fate of the fabled Persian land. For with every spurn and spear of scorn forcefully thrown across the imperial American vessel's bow, peace becomes a less attainable goal and the very American cultural quilt of individual freedom and justice is desecrated and torn asunder, resigned to the dust bin of history.

Iran is no bitter enemy forever to be loathed for the 1979-1980 hostage crisis. Bot nations' smeared blemishes on each others' collective history. The CIA assassinated and replaced the democratically-elected reform minded President Mossadeq in 1953, putting the dictatorial and notoriously corrupt Shah back in power. He would rule with an iron fist until 1979 when Iranians were so enraged by his hypocrisy that some welcomed the Islamic Revolution.

There are no ulterior motvies to negotiate, nor are there any patterns nor protocols nor time tables on which to set principles and make major decisions in foreign affairs. It is rather a simple type of knowledge; to listen and converse with an open mind and an open heart. Solving international problems does not entail counting score. World leaders should instead focus on the goal of carving a more peaceful and hospitable future for the world's next children.

Simply put, Iran places no threat to the United States nor Israel nor any of its allies. Being so, America would be better off and more secure by championing trade between the two nations rather than expansive economic sanctions and waving the bloodied black flag of war.

Saturday, September 26, 2009

U.S. Military Abduct Citizen

U.S. Military works with local law enforcement in Pittsburgh to Abduct Citizen at the G-20 Summit Protest on September 24, 2009.

Wednesday, September 23, 2009

G-20: Weapons of Mass Deception

When the G-20 meets during its bi-annual summit this Thursday and Friday in Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania, world leaders will unveil a 'new' agenda. While its purpose is nothing new, leaders plan to coordinate for the first time on an unprecedented scale foreign, domestic and economic policy. They will address a new global system of carbon-taxing, a nuclear arms reduction aim and the possiblity of a global financial regulatory system.

Each of these may seem upon their face as worthwhile and desirable goals. However, behind the kind facade, these efforts resemble nothing more than a dictatorial imposition of elite will upon the masses.

The corporate press is already lauding efforts to combat climate change and reduce carbon dioxide emissions on a uniform worldwide scale. Yet, it is evident that little of the discussion focuses on the actual crux of such measures promoted in climate change bills. For example, Congressman Henry Waxman (D) from California was able to push climate change legislation through the US House, still without Senate approval. In that bill, taxes based carbon caps for businesses holds as the main enforcer to combat the complex problem of climate change. Many have argued that the failure to posit a ambitious plan for real alternative energy source investment reveals the climate change bill to be simply another lucrative tax.

Meanwhile, international politicians argue that a carbon tax on businesses and in the near future a carbon tax on individual citizens worldwide could end the global warming crisis. But what they fail to admit is who will benefit from these carbon-ponzi schemes.

Yet it is some of the biggest players in the carbon-credit trading game who are the biggest polluters. Big Coa and infamous financier Goldman Sachs sits atop the ladder of favor to benefit from a proposed carbon trading system. In a July Rolling Stone article entitled "The Great American Bubble", Matt Taibbi reported that Goldman Sachs was set to be a forerunner in the cap-and-trade commodity market in which set price controls would guarantee profits. Taibbi writes that, "The new carboncredit market is a virtual repeat of the commodities-market casino that's been kind to Goldman, except it has one delicious new wrinkle: If the plan goes forward as expected, the rise in prices will be government-mandated. Goldman won't even have to rig the game. It will be rigged in advance."

Many well regarded free market economists critical of carbon-tax plans like Czech President Vaclav Klaus have labelled the global carbon tax system "as dangerous as communism" adding to speculation that cap-and-trade may be exploited as a method to ration goods and ultimately reduce the human standard of living worldwide.

Much has been made of renewed efforts between the United States and Russia to reduce the amount of nuclear weapons. Up until now, the rift in negotiations has been embodied by the propoosed Missile Defense System previously slated to the Czech Republic and Poland. President Obama announced last week he's now abandoning the Bush-era proposal enthusiastically supported by Secretary of Defense Robert Gates.

Obama's move to reason on this bitterly polarizing and heated topic may well pave the way for significant reductions in nuclear weapons in a world of ex-superpowers and new giants. The latest from White House advisors entertained cutting deployable weaopns from the 2,000 range to a shrunken force of hundreds, a step obviously in the right direction, yet still short of the needs to secure a safe world. There was no mention of the over 12,000 nuclear weapons the United States possess which may not be deployed but are certanly capable upon request. And while the Russian-American nuclear negotiations may rekindle the grand days of old, the current political reality is left out as if its presence is an affront to logic.

With China, India, Pakistan, North Korea and Israel enlarging their nuclear arsenals, not to include them in nuclear reductions due to "insignificance" is not only short-sighted, it is preposterous and dead wrong. And that's not to mention the steady recycling of nuclear weaponry by the United Kingdom and France. Meanwhile, finger pointing aboundind at North Korea and Iran will leave the biggest perpetrators unscolded and emboldened in their arms.

Most likely real reform in nuclear proliferation will be shirked and the demonly specter of nuclear annihilation will continue to hang over humanity for generations to come.

As for the creation of a new global financial regulatory system, these efforts like those above will only complicate rather than solve the real problem. After the unpopularity worldwide of state-run 'bailouts' and 'stimulii' cautious leaders at the G-20 Summit will be wary of public outrage over corporate welfare programs. This time they will guise their actions as necessary "regulation" needed desperately in a panic to insure the survival of the world.

Yet, actions taken to create a 'Bank of the World' and a new global currency will fall short of being considered as any achievement for the average citizen. For it was the very same advisors and financiers who carefully constructed and steered the global economic collapse. Those like the Federal Reserve Bank, whose non-disclosure of over $500 billion of taxpayer money handed out in "foreign credit swaps" only leads to more questions about what is really going on behind the screen.

It is thus important to keep in mind the pitched perception and the true reality behind this week's G-20 Summit. It is no celebrity ball, rather it is a series of secret meetings held between varied foreign heads of state, each advancing the G-20's own group economic interest and not that of its sovereign nations' citizens. There is no question that future global policy will be made in Pittsburgh, the real question remains, what actually is the plan and can they force the world to live with it?

Tuesday, September 22, 2009

You're Up Next

Amidst the raging health care debate verging on political war, the issue of overhauling the newspaper industry has squeaked out of the dim and into the limelight. After pronouncing the rapid success of bailouts, the legislative brainwork is now proposing a multi-billion dollar newspaper bailout which the President supports. This corporate news media bailout would work to brace most metropolitan areas with one newspaper and aim to solidify the mainstream media's decaying yet sole power of newsmaking.

But what strings will be attached? Surely, the President nor Congress will give away such lavish terms without asking for something in return.

Yes, the scenario is just a repeat of simlar actions taken in other industries. But, in the previous bailouts' cases, they were industries which actually makes up a significant percentage of the American economy. These include the automobile industry, the health insurance industry, the financial banking system and now the news. However, such proud boasts of achievement under these takeovers fail to hold merit as the automobile industry is collapsing, new healthcare 'reform' is being run by Big Pharma and the financial "regulators" like Federal Reserve Bank chairman Ben Bernanke have boldly declared the "end of the recession."

It is in these fabrications and past the fragile veil where our rulers' own words tell the largely unrealized truth.

Yet, there is somehting even more sinister in government relying on the free press and the free press, the government. And it's become no mystery that the corporate media is full of abstractions and opportunistic mischaracterization of history and the present. At the behest of interested corporations, our free press is fast becoming a tool of special interests willing to cause harm in order to achieve political aims.

President Obama has now verbally pondered a chance at regulating press if given the go-ahead. It is no coincidence that many in politics have already accused the President of influencing the media's coverage to distort political realities and marginilize outspoken opposition. Such a claim is not outrageous, after all the description is quite strikingly reminiscent of a time not so long ago under President George W. Bush.

Even worse, in the same speech in which he touted a media bailout, President Obama had harsh words for independent journalists, many of whoms volumes of in-depth and respected work helped fuel his presidential campaign. President Obama chided that, "I am concerned that if the direction of the news is all blogosphere, all opinions, with no serious fact-checking, no serious attempts to put stories in context, that what you will end up getting is people shouting at each other across the void but not a lot of mutual understanding." This analysis of the exploding blogosphere cannot be farther from the truth.

Signaling a bailout/blackout to end independent journalism the President in his carefully placed words has shown contempt for the First Amendment and free speech. Suggesting a possible tax of online news sites including blogs, President Obama's comments fit as a historic parallel to those of King George III's attempt to regulate American media by the much reviled Stamp Tax Act of 1765 that aimed to limit free political discussion. Yet, let it be of note that King George's tax only emboldened the opposition and began the swirl of events that culminated in the American Revolution.

Today is no different, In a day where growing numbers of citizens count themselves as political independents and the loss of credibility of the corporate government complex, this barbaric proposal is an obvious means to stifle the innate human right of free speech.

Simultaneously, the FCC has proposed a new "net neutrality bill" plan for congressional approval which would create a department of government whose sole purpose would involve acting as an adjudicator of news coverage and speech.

Hence, if an official within such a department took the opinion that something published was offensive, hateful or aggressive speech they could effectively silence the speaker by simply removing the content, or the site and surveilling future internet activity and/or written and spoken comment.

So dangerous and pervasive this system could be, that newly sparked extensions of legal intelligence sharing between the Pentagon and local law enforcement could effectively use a "net neutrality" act to harass and force out bloggers and many other journalists. It is a hazardous precedent that only blurs the rule of law and makes a mockery of free speech rights in America.

And for President Obama who seems to believe whole-heartedly in the corporate dream
of micromanaging America, he must know that all attempts in history to do so have utterly failed and any new attempt, no matter how powerfully and aggressively it is applied, can succeed.

This attempted coup of our First Amendment rights will never succeed due to the highly personal and humanistic nature of thought and speech. While such a regulation may be enacted, it can be circumvented always, albeit not easily, with guided and true resistance. Creating another perceived crisis percipitated in order to pass an ill-advised law is and will no longer be a way to silence others.

Monday, September 21, 2009

Zbigniew Brzezinski and the Trilateral Commission

Interview of Zbigniew Brzezinski by Mark Lamb on CSPAN on March 6, 1989.

Tuesday, September 8, 2009

AFGHANISTAN 2001 -



Joshua Bernard 1988-2009

[AP Photo by Julie Jacobson]

Monday, August 31, 2009

New World Order in Repose

After a whirlwind of activity in the political realm consumed the early part of 2009, the furry of the storm has since slowed down and now rests on the precipice of what is to come.

In a world that's experienced financial catastrophe and growing social turmoil in the past year, it is unclear what the outcome of such upheaval will produce in the end. After the easy passage of the President Obama endorsed $700 billion stimulus package in winter a stream of non-ordered non-prioritized proposals have sputtered out of the White House bloc. A carbon-tax cap and trade bill became highlighted only to be buried by the oppposition of the elite corporate-powered Senate. In addition, more modest proposals like increased spending for the Department of Education to further provide cirricular focus on standardized testing and the much-lauded but waningly weak "cash for clunkers" program made up the kaleidoscope of American small politics in the summer of 2009.

But even more telling, the catastrophic state of American economic capability and the state of American foreign policy have at best slightly worsened. Early announcements in 2009 that a sum of 30,000 U.S. soldiers would be deployed to Afghanistan is now real and is straining American military security and reeking irrecovable harm on the United States' international reputation. Over the weekend, the top U.S. soldier in Iraq, Admiral Mike Mullen instructed that the United States must come up with an entirely new method for 'winning' the war. He admitted "a certain arrogance" on behalf of the United States' handling of communication and stated that the military does not always understand the subtleties of the Arab world. He called the situation in Afghanistan "serious and deteriorating."

Strikingly, the so-called "withdrawal" of the over 150,000 troops in Iraq has not been going as well as planned. A high profile attack in the heavily fortified and camp-like "Green Zone" in central Baghdad that killed over 100 Iraqis earlier this month contributes to the unease felt by an opening power vaccum with little encouraging to replace it. In investigation of the attack, it was proved nearly a dozen security officers aided the attackers in return for bribes. This revelation and other tragic news is reeking havoc on the legitimacy of an already unpopular and hamstrung American-clad Iraqi govenrment. The very same government that is no more autonomous than the governments let by the Germans to Czechs, Poles and Hungarians in World War II.

And even less encouraging is the current reception of the United States by great foreign powers. Russia is still incensed by the arrogance of a planned radar and missile defense system in Czech Republic and Poland, as are over two-thirds of the citizens of the Czech and Polish nations according to recent polls. Trade between Russia still remains a measly 1% of U.S. foreign trade a long 20 years after the collapse of the Soviet Empire. In the Sea of China, American warships still patrol and are denounced by politicians at home for violation of sovereignty. Not to even mention Iran, a nation that remains open to honest negotiation for a peace but is ever discouraged by the iron-fisted policies of war games still attached to the American administration. Some have even predicted an Israeli nuclear strike on Iran is soon to come with or without American approval. Meanwhile, the international pressure of sanctions foretells a greater period of armament as a result of the building fear to come.

Likewise to our proclaimed neighbors of the Monroe Doctrine to the south, America is increasingly isolating public opinion and upseting political balance. The US military currently is moving headquarters in South America from Ecuador, which sent US troops packing from Mana Air Force Base to locations in Colombia, a country whose President Alvaro Uribe has attracted the imperial army to protect his aligned interests. With plans for over eight military installations in Colombia based off the dubious "success" of the 1999 drug-war blueprint 'Plan Colombia', Venezuela, Uruguay Bolivia and a majority of South America is up in turmoil over the noticeably alarming incursion. President Hugo Chavez of Venezuela has deemed it "cause for war".

And now, during the recess of both houses of Congress and the President out of the press and in rest for a much needed vacation, the American people finally have a sun ray to catch and hope to kindle in bettering our tattered republic. It is clear there is growing opposition to all forms of agenda and that the words "conserative", "liberal", "Democrat" and "Republican" are starting to loose their stripes. At this prescient time in history, it is clear major events are upon us.

Recently, strong popular opposition to the proposed national health care initiative has presented a new side of the American public tired of eating hash for intellectual debate. Over 50 percent of respondents in polls now oppose the so-called "public option". Meanwhile, consensus over the War on Terror is turning around as nearly half of poll takers think America is losing the Afghanistan War.

The great mountain is about to come upon us as September will mark the start of the new push for healthcare "reform", the continued escalation of U.S. wars in the Middle East, questions of more civil and military autonomy for Japan and other nations of similar ilk. In addition, a new but disinterested move to prosecute some war crimes that occurred under President Bush is encouraging. However, this step once unveiled stands as a mere process of political formality with no real intention to change the underlying conditions that govern the American military nor the controversial violence-inciting CIA.

Once the People begin to find out more about past and future plans for federal dominance in all areas of economic and social life it will become clear that the great new order that the politicians seek is not quite what the rest of million of us have in mind. Whether that realization will occur soon enough to reverse our recent dangerous trends remains unanswered. But this autumn will certainly provide some of the shining clues in what we as a People can expect.

Monday, August 17, 2009

John Pilger: Obama is a Corporate Marketing Dream

Award winning journalist John Pilger's analysis of the Obama of the establishment.

Friday, May 29, 2009

The Friendly Neighbor Returns

After a short hiatus, the Friendly Neighbor returns! Stay tuned for new articles coming soon.

RCD

Tuesday, March 31, 2009

Death of American Automobile and More

Monday came as a dark day for the American automobile industry as it became public that Chrysler would not be given further federal bailout money. The nation under which the automobile took off and revolutionized life is now only a faint shadow of the past. Industrial production is dismantling at alarming rates, and fastest in the United States. Over the past year and a half, the United States has lost over 2 million manufacturing jobs, and throughout the economy nearly 4 million.

While foreign car factories have thrived in the United States in the past decade, the nation's own manufacturers have been faltering on the brink of penultimate failure. General Motors and Ford also remain in murky waters. While it is likely the President will offer those larger producers further bailout money, the once proud Chrysler will shrivel from the hypocrisy of the corporate-government game.

Even more insulting, GM's CEO Rick Wagoner was ousted today at the strong urging of President Obama who has used the role of the Executive Branch in the newest of all lights. His ability to now make employment decisions for major companies as well as seize non-banking institutions raise the spectre of the beginning of a long process which could destroy the free market and freedom itself. The consequences of such actions could easily become far-reaching and untractable far beyond what may now be intended.

Thomas Jefferson once said that in lawmaking, "Single acts of tyranny may be ascribed to the accidental opinion of the day; but a series of oppressions, begun at a distinguished period, and pursued unalterably through every change of ministers (adminstrators) too plainly proves a deliberate, systematic plan of reducing us to slavery."

The Constitution exemplifies a near perfect framework for the exercise of limited government in the hands of the People. Instead of protecting the People's interests however, the government has long ago chosen the path of creating gains and superficial progress to shelter itself as a power structure serving narrow interests of the elite. Thence, when the next "bailout" or "stimulus" is preached bound to occur and needed at-once with so much urgency, maybe it is then time to ask what it means for both rich and destitute yearning to be free must bow down and pay for waste and financial hedonism to save only a precious few.

While the new admnistration enjoys using its perceived image to congratulate its own redeeming, it is woefully evident that little is considered for the People who they must go through to improve society. Yet professional advice is too strong for the common sense knowledge and the sincerity in a neighbor's voice. Thus, we must be taken off by the fantasies of petty advisors playing out their childhood games with little idea of its consequence of negligence. And recklessness is its bride.

As Thomas Jefferson so well put it "On every question of construction [of the Constitution] let us carry ourselves back to the time when the Constitution was adopted, recollect the spirit manifested in the debates, and instead of trying what meaning may be squeezed out of the text, or intended against it, conform to the probable one in which it was passed."

It is time to rethink how Congress and the new Sun King do business.

Obama ridicules Marijuana Activism, Legalization

In a Friday afternoon press conference, President Obama fielded questions from a nationwide Internet audience in which over 3.5 million questions were submitted. The highest portion of questions asked by the online video audience focused on the legalization of marijuana. While many of the clips related to medicinal marijuana legislation, others more generally questioned the federal government's long term policy of the War on Drugs.

However, President Obama mocked marijuana activists, many of whom noted they supported him because of his often liberal stance on social issues. Before being asked the question he prefaced his response by stating that viewers advised that legalization would be a way to grow the economy. He flatly dismissed this notion, remarking " "No! I do not think that is a good strategy to grow our economy. Okay, alright." His statement was then followed by muffled laughter and spontaneous applause. He also joked that, "I don't know what this says about the online audience." Obama then quickly moved on to the next question.

White House Secretary Robert Gibbs when later asked actual reasons why Obama opposed marijuana legalization, he toughly laughed it off stumbling that although the White House is not bothered by it, it is just the way it is. He falied to explain reasoning on why the federal government deems marijuana a dangerously harmful and illegal substance and why thousands of Americans are put in jail each year over recreational use.

The Obama administration has already to begin to shed the very People who put it in power for the convenience of political gain and continuance of the procession of status quo.

Monday, March 30, 2009

Minneapolis to Raze Last Downtown House

In a column penned today by the Star-Tribune, the last free-standing house in downtown Minneapolis will most likely be demolished at the behest of the Minneapolis city council. "End Near for Downtown's Last Single Family Home" describes the last remaining downtown house which lies at 816 Park Avenue South just east of the busiest part of downtown. While the current owner purchased the home for only $52,000 it has as recent as 2005 listed on the market for $275,000 for its historical significance and prime location. It reportedly was built in the 1870's and has some distinctive quality as a simple Victorian style wooden home.

While the city cites neighbors' concerns over the now derelict and abandoned home, it is a question of the future of the property space which brings into question their motive to ensure its destruction. After a housing court ordered that the current owner demolish the historic site, it remains standing and intact, a testament to its constancy in its surroundings. The owner has cited personal finance problems as the reasons he has been unable to execute the order. However, according to the Star-Tribune, now the city seeks to confiscate the property and then as quickly as possible crank the wrecking ball and assume the possibilities inherent in utilizing a small lot of precious downtown real estate.

The reasons for demolition remain dubious, but the city appears poised to ensure the end of any remnant of past family life in downtown Minneapolis. The once innumerable small frame houses which dominated the city center are now displaced and the last stubborn creature of the wood is facing extermination.

For all the money it seems that the city wastes, preserving and utilizing the last family home in Minneapolis would be a good short order to educate the future generations of the humble beginnings of the sprawling frontier behemoth. Yet, greed is too inticing and corruption all encompassing.

Only a public outcry could save the condemned from death. But even so, the spectre of forgetfulness will forever overtake that of old warmth, knowledge and industry

Panel Suggests Mandatory Screening for all Teenagers

In a wide reaching report issued by the government-supported American Academy of Pediatrics; doctors are now recommended to screen all teenage patients for symptons of clinical depression the Star-Tribune reports. This report aimed to investigate ideas in which doctors can better detect depression and eliminate its negative consequences.

Yet, it rings odd that physicians are now deemed part of a mental evaluation in which the patient can be deemed "unfit". As doctors are not experts in psychology it is surprising that this widely recognized doctoral academy is suggesting screening for which their audience is wholly unqualified. Moreover, the implications of physicians intervening in mental health care could detriment proper treatment through conflicting diagnostic interests and further pharmeceutical market regulations.

With the scope of medicine broadening to squeeze effectiveness at the strain of purpose, it is perhaps wise to now ask, what good will all this gut-inspired hardy work produce? Most likely, none.

Monday, March 23, 2009

On the Brink with Iran

In an international environment that is increasingly hostile despite the American public’s repudiation of Bush-era policies, relations between the United States are on a tipping point thirty years after the1979 Iran hostage crisis.

The end of last week’s news events held some scary surprises for the casual observer. On Wednesday, the AP reported that two United States underwater vessels collided in the Strait of Hormuz, off the coast of Iran. One of those ships was an amphibious vesel, the other a nuclear-powered submarine. While apparently thousands of gallons of oil were leaked into the Persian Gulf, no nuclear material leaked.

On Saturday, President Obama presented a video message on behalf of the United States to the leaders of the Islamic Republic of Iran. In it, President Obama beseeches Iran’s leadership for a pathway for d├ętente and a new age in relations with the United States.

Reuters reports that the Ayatollah responded by saying while the message had good intentions, it lacked the concrete proposals needed to extend conciliation and quell hostility. The Ayatollah suggested the United States return currently frozen assets from Iran extending from debilitating U.N. sanctions during the past decade. In addition, he cited the need for military restraint from the United States and sincere troop withdrawals from the region.

The Ayatollah spoke in Mashhad instructing, “"You change, our behavior will change."

He went on to add that the United States is “"hated in the world" and should stop interfering in other countries.”

The United States overthrew the democratically elected government of Iran by a CIA coup in 1953. The trauma enacted by the assassination of populist President Mossadeq in 1953 and the revulsion at the U.S.-backed installation as Shah as dictator until his overthrow in 1979 is still fresh in the minds of many Iranians.

Mexican Drug War Continues

LinkTV reports on the growing violence at the border on March 5, 2009.

Afghanistan: Certain Failure

A strike over the weekend in Kundunz province in rural Afghanistanan an unmanned U.S. drone killed five men. While the U.S. military insists those killed were terror suspects, the Afghan government claims that they were all civilians.

Thus, the War in Afghanistan extends into its eighth year. President Obama announced earlier in February a deployment of an additional 17,000 troops to Afghanistan. Since last summer, there has been a rapid increase in the amount of U.S. drone attacks on Afghan civilians in rural areas. According to news reports, over 2,000 civilians were killed in Afghanistan alone in 2008, the highest year toll in recent years.

Meanwhile, according to RawStory, U.S. ambassador Richard Holbrooke has declared the efforts in the War on Drugs to Afghanistan is a complete failure. At the European Summit Conference in Brussels, Holbrooke stated, "It is the most wasteful and ineffective programme I have seen in 40 years in and out of the government," The opium poppy remains an important cash crop for Afghanistan. Harvests have reached record highs in recent years under the government coalition led by U.S.-backed President Hamid Karzai.

RawStory also reports that in 2008 the United States began "aerial fumagation" which spreads the chemical Roundup Ultra over poppy fields grown for heroin production. While these efforts may have decreased some production last year, its enaction is without power to control drug production.

Holbrooke aims to give Afghan farmers new incentives with an economic package designed to improve agriculture in the rugged tribal region. In pegging his attempt to persuade European monetary aid for U.S. military and political efforts in Afghanistan, Holbrooke has put the face of a lovable clown on the disfigured face of poverty, war and continuous military occupation.

Sunday, March 22, 2009

Police Taser Kills Michigan Boy

Authorities in Bay City, Michigan have confirmed that a fifteen-year old boy died early today as a result of police taser use on him as an attempt to break up a scuffle according to the Star-Tribune. The Bay City Police Department has not released the minor’s name.

While one officer now is on leave, the real culprit of the scandal remains unmasked. According to Amnesty International, nearly 400 people in America have died in similar police taser use stories under a study done from 2000 to 2008.

Maybe judges should begin in cases to consider the implications of taser-use as torture and cruel and unusual punishment, prohibited under the Constitution by the 8th Amendment.

Meanwhile, TASER remains one of the top distributors in the police world, its products used by agencies worldwide.

Chavez Blasts Obama

According to Reuters, Venezuelan President Hugo Chavez lashed out at President Obama of the United States this weekend over what he calls imperial interference in the affairs of sovereign nations.

Chavez spoke in Caracas warning his audience that, “He [Obama] goes and accuses me of exporting terrorism: the least I can say is that he's a poor ignoramus; he should read and study a little to understand reality."

The latest spat between the two heads of state is an outgrowth of an ambassador removal President Chavez enacted last summer while incensed by President Bush’s efforts in Venezuela. Chavez also brought home his ambassador to the United States. He says he is now reconsidering sending a new ambassador to Washington to confer with Obama.

Chavez continued, "My, what ignorance; the real obstacle to development in Latin America has been the empire that you today preside over." Chavez has strongly criticized the United States for its imperial ambitions in South America.
Chavez remains highly suspicious of the “change” promised from newly elected President Obama. Earlier this month, he warned “Don’t mess with me, Mr. Obama!” in reference to U.S. efforts citing Venezuela as a backer of terrorism.
President Chavez continues to suggest that the CIA directed a military coup effort that overthrew him in 2002 for twenty four hours.

Blackwater on Trial

According to RawStory, Blackwater is under fire following a federal lawsuit filed by a widow of a man killed by an employee of the private military contractor. The man, Raheem Khaleef Sa’adoon was 32 when allegedly slain on Christmas Eve in 2006 by Blackwater employee Andrew Moonen, who was noted to be intoxicated at the time.

Blackwater, (now renamed Xe) became infamous worldwide after a convoy opened fire in a busy Baghdad intersection in October 2007 killing 17 civilians, many of them women and children.

The lawsuit also alleges a cover-up scheme took place after the murder in an effort to protect Moonen and the greater Blackwater community.

Blackwater was banned from Iraq by the Iraqi government earlier this year. Their famously lucrative government contracts in Iraq and Afghanistan has become a trend that is leading the government to further outsource military jobs to private companies. Blackwater specializes in escorting political dignitaries and even worked security for President Barack Obama’s 2008 visit to Iraq.

Blackwater is headquartered in Moyock, North Carolina.

Thursday, March 19, 2009

Bailout is Hypocrisy

Although the Dow Jones continues to rise this week, news in the larger scene has been wholly disheartening. Amid confirmatioons that AIG used $165 million of the nearly $3 billion of taxpayer money to pay executive bonuses and prolong the pain of the insolvent institution, the financial bailout game is becoming farce. Many Americans are starting to believe that perhaps it would have been best to let the free market put AIG and others out of their misery.

But "bold action" has sought to put the dead man known as corporate mega-ank on a breathing machine indefinitely. It is simple to wonder why things are bad when the very executives and politicians who terrorized the public for cash and ultimately, their livelihood, hold press conferences condemning lavish executive compensation that they knew dominated the fine print.

The White House remains in the grasp of hte corporations and even worse receives its economic and political directives from the privately-owned Federal Reserve Bank and their special interests.

AIG is symbolic in that it was the first private company awarded federal bailout money. It began a processs that later culminated in a $700 billion banker takeover in October, a $350 billion Secretary of State dictation bailout in November and President Obama's recently passed $900 billion "stimulus". The last "rescue package" seeks to continue the same citizen to CEO payment transfer plan that has wrecked most Americans' savings.

It is laughable that the Preesident and Congresspeople are now whining to the American people about a measly $165 million out of a cool $4 trillion already taken by brunt force and manipulation.

It is especially a surprising move noting that they refused to consider such issues when the following bailouts were debated. But, alas they were too busy building a "safer America" via new economy to see beyond the long political memory of three weeks. Thus, average Americans will suffer and the President and Congress will continue to be mere pawns of the super-elite.

Obama's Big Plan for Afghanistan

A day after a congressional attache signed and sent a letter to President Obama requesting him to "reconsider military escalation" in Afghanistan, President Obama announced his plans to phase in an Afghan national security force of 400,000 in the next six to seven years. This amount is over three times more than the amount the American government planned for in 2002.

The New York Times reports that the Afghan security force curently stands around 90,000 and that last year President Bush approved $12 billion in funds to nearly double the force. President Obama appears poised to continue America's imperial presence in Afghanistan.

In addition, the Times also mentions that President Obama is near announcing a plan to spend $10 - 20 billion for operations in Afghanistan until 2016. If the United States has troops in Afghanistan until that year, it will go on record as a fifteen-year war, the longest in American history. The War in Afghanistan is now in its eighth year.