In the minds of the Japanese press and their readers, the United States government under the Obama administration dislikes – if it doesn’t, it should and it must – the Japanese “right-wing” administration of Shinzo Abe, and it condemns – if it doesn’t, it should and it must – the State Secrecy Protection Law that just passed the Upper house in Japan.
Japan Times, Dec. 6, 2013: Following political turmoil that rocked the Diet over the past week, ruling block Upper House members finally enacted the contentious state secrets bill late Friday night. Earlier in the day, opposition parties intensified their protests in vain over a law that’s being criticizing for not creating an independent oversight body capable of preventing the government from hiding inconvenient information at its discretion.
- Economic Hitman John Perkins Outraged After Ecuador Government Shuts Down Pachamama Alliance (Waking Times, Dec 5, 2013):
Respected author, public speaker and spokesperson for indigenous rights John Perkins expressed outrage today that the government of Ecuador has violently closed down the rainforest protection activist group, Pachama Alliance, which Perkins helped to create in 1995. Strongly condemning the government’s actions as illegal
“This is an outrage! The Pachamama Alliance organization, that I co-founded in 1995, has been brutally and violently attacked by the Ecuadorian government because of pressure from international oil companies and the corporatocracy. What has been done is blatantly illegal. It must be addressed immediately.” – John Perkins from a Facebook post
Perkins has a unique perspective on the struggle between indigenous people and the international corporate/government siege of the Amazon and it’s land and resources. He personally played a major role in economic takeover of Ecuador, as detailed in his must read novel, Confessions of an Economic Hitman: Continue reading »
“They want your fucking retirement money!”
- George Carlin (2005)
- Detroit bankruptcy ruling triggers calls for pension cuts across the US (WSWS, Dec 6, 2013):
Within days of a federal judge’s ruling in support of the Detroit bankruptcy, the devastating implications for the working class across the US are becoming apparent. States and cities throughout the country are citing the legal precedent of the Detroit ruling to attack public employee pensions, initiating a new stage in the assault on workers’ rights and living standards.
Politicians of both big business parties, media outlets and financial institutions have welcomed the decision by Judge Steven Rhodes, hailing its categorical assertion that federal courts can override state and local guarantees of public workers’ pensions.
The Michigan Constitution declares that accrued pension benefits are “contractual obligations” that “shall not be diminished or impaired.” Many other state constitutions have similar provisions. But Rhodes brushed aside the Michigan Constitution in order to open the door to the gutting of pensions.
On Thursday, Illinois Governor Pat Quinn signed into law a pension bill that slashes benefits for retired as well as active state employees, in violation of the Illinois Constitution’s prohibition of such pension cuts. Described as a “landmark” law, the Illinois measure will raise the retirement age for younger workers by eight years, slash cost-of-living adjustments for current pensioners, and transfer many workers from state-paid pension plans to employee-paid 401(k) plans.
- Japan’s secrets bill turns journalists into terrorists (Japan Times, Dec 3, 2013):
Shinzo Abe owes Xi Jinping a debt of gratitude.The buzz in Japanese cyberspace is that Chinese President Xi is wagging the dog by declaring a controversial “air-defense identification zone” across the East China Sea. The move has drastically ramped up tensions with Japan and the United States, both of which have blatantly disregarded Beijing’s unilateral edict. According to one prevailing theory, Xi is whipping up an international storm to change the subject domestically away from income inequality, official corruption and China’s blackening skies.
The leader benefiting most from the controversy, though, may be Japan’s Abe. With his own populace furious over China’s unilateral decree, the prime minister is seizing the opportunity to rush a chilling official-secrets bill into law.
- Top Official: Protesting secrecy law is act of terrorism — Japan gov’t promotes idea that you’re racist if avoiding Fukushima produce — Bloomberg: “The entire process has echoes of George Orwell” — Nuclear activists to be constantly spied on? (ENENews, Dec 4, 2013):
EXSKF, Nov. 28, 2013: The 33rd Ministry of Justice human rights essay contest for junior high school students has been won by a student in Miyagi Prefecture who wrote not buying Fukushima’s peaches because of radiation fear was the same as him being “discriminated” against by his classmate for being a Chinese national. Refusing the Fukushima produce because of radiation fear is tantamount to racial discrimination, according to the student and the Ministry of Justice who selected his essay as the best of the best this year. [...] Not buying Fukushima produce, as the government tells you to? You’re racist [...]
Japan Times, Dec. 3, 2013: With the contentious state secrets bill slated to clear the Upper House this week, citizens have been holding daily protests in front of the Diet building, denouncing the law as emblematic of the “rise of fascism.” [...] Atsuko Ikegami, 45, also decried what she viewed as the state tightening its grip on citizen access to critical information, including about nuclear crises. [...] “When those (anti-nuclear) rallies happened, I thought, ‘Well, the Japanese people finally learned to stand up and make their voice heard,’ ” Ikegami said. “But the bill could subject these activists to constant spying by the state [...]”
Tags: 1984, Dictatorship, Environment, Fascism, Food, Fukushima, George Orwell, Global News, Government, Health, Japan, Law, New World Order, Nuclear, Nuclear reactors, Politics, propaganda, Radiation, Surveillance, Terrorism
- Over 700,000 people on US watch list: and once you get on, there’s no way off (RT, Dec 2, 2013):
The names of nearly three-quarters of a million individuals have been secretly added to watch lists administered by the United States government, but federal officials are adamant about keeping information about these rosters under wraps.
A report by the New York Times’ Susan Stellin published over the weekend attempted to shine much-deserved light on an otherwise largely unexposed program of federal watch lists, but details about these directories — including the names of individuals on them and what they did to get there — remain as elusive as ever.
- California Now Confiscating Legally Purchased Guns (The Free Patriot, Nov 30, 2013):
The first police raids to take legally purchased guns commenced in California. The state has the strictest gun laws in the country now, and is definitely not pro Second Amendment in the state.
California has been gearing up for this moment. Now they have made a move to confiscate legally purchased fire arms. They have expanded on their list of “prohibited persons” to have fire arms to include minor misdemeanors and “mental health concerns”. Some of the people are being not allowed their Second Amendment rights for various reasons including being behind on their taxes.
The state hired 20,000 more officers in preparation for the new confiscation legislation. They also authorized more than $24 million in new gear and weapons for their confiscation team. One of their targets was a man by the name of Joe Mendez. Continue reading »
- Secrecy law protests ‘act of terrorism’: LDP secretary-general (Japan Times, Dec 1, 2013):
Citizens demonstrating against the controversial state secrets bill are committing “an act terrorism,” according to Liberal Democratic Party Secretary-General Shigeru Ishiba.
In a blog post Friday, he wrote: “If you want to realize your ideas and principles, you should follow the democratic principles, by gaining as much support as you can. I think the strategy of merely shouting one’s opinions at the top of one’s lungs is not so fundamentally different from an act of terrorism.”
- Japanese Senator: “The Path That Japan Is Taking Is The Recreation Of A Fascist State” (Washington’s Blog, Nov 30, 2013):
Japanese (And American) Governments Go to Extreme Lengths to Cover Up Their Mess
Japan and the U.S. are doing everything they can to cover up the danger of the Fukushima crisis.
The Daily Beast notes:
The Japanese government, which already has a long history of cover-ups and opaqueness, is on its way to becoming even less open and transparent after the lower house the Diet, Japan’s parliament, passed the Designated Secrets Bill on Tuesday. With new powers to classify nearly anything as a state secret and harsh punishments for leakers that can easily be used to intimidate whistleblowers and stifle press freedom, many in Japan worry that the if the bill becomes law it will be only the first step towards even more severe erosions of freedom in the country. Continue reading »
Police grab a man in the visitor’s gallery as he shouts protests against the special secrets bill at the House of Representatives special committee on national security, at the Diet building in Tokyo on Nov. 26. (Mainichi)
- Insiders: State secrets bill meant to suppress Fukushima news — Japan public stunned, citizens could face years in prison — Man has mouth “stuffed with cloth” after voicing opposition — Toxic leaks into ocean seem unstoppable, gov’t must plug the information instead (PHOTO) (ENENews, Nov 29, 2013):
Mainichi, Nov. 27, 2013: The ruling coalition’s ramming of a controversial special state secrets bill [...] through the House of Representatives on Nov. 26 has stunned the public. [...] it could discourage citizens as well as journalists from seeking access to such information for fear of harsh punishment, blocking government information from circulating in society [...]
Japan-based Investigative Journalist Jake Adelstein, Nov. 29, 2013: [...] even politicians inside the ruling bloc are saying, “It can’t be denied that another purpose is to muzzle the press, shut up whistleblowers, and ensure that the nuclear disaster at Fukushima ceases to be an embarrassment before the Olympics.” [...] And most tellingly, Masako Mori, the Minister of Justice, has declared that nuclear related information will most likely be a designated secret. For the Abe administration this would be fantastic way to deal with the issue of tons of radiated water leaking [...] There seems to be no end to stopping the toxic waste leaks there but the new legislation would allow the administration to plug the information leaks permanently. As [it] continues to pour into the ocean and our food supply, it is an ominous sign that the Japanese government refuses to disclose information about the levels of pollution [...]
Mainichi, Nov. 27, 2013: Under the bill, ordinary citizens who aid and abet or conspire with others in leaking information classified as special state secrets could face up to five years in prison even if the information were not actually revealed. If citizens were indicted for obtaining special secrets under the legislation, they could be convicted without the content of the information being clarified.
Associated Press, Nov. 26, 2013: Japan’s more powerful lower house of Parliament approved a state secrecy bill late Tuesday [...] Critics say it might sway authorities to withhold more information about nuclear power plants [...] The move is welcomed by the United States [...] lawyer Hiroyasu Maki said the bill’s definition of secrets is so vague and broad that it could easily be expanded to include radiation data [...] Journalists who obtain information “inappropriately” or “wrongfully” can get up to five years in prison, prompting criticism that it would make officials more secretive and intimidate the media. Attempted leaks or inappropriate reporting, complicity or solicitation are also considered illegal. [...] Japan’s proposed law also designates the prime minister as a third-party overseer.
BBC, Nov. 26, 2013: Japan approves new state secrecy bill to combat leaks [...] The bill now goes to the upper house, where it is also likely to be passed.
The Australian, Nov. 25, 2013: Japanese press baulks at push for ‘fascist’ secrecy laws [...] Taro Yamamoto [an upper house lawmaker] said the law threatened to recreate a fascist state in Japan. “This secrecy law represents a coup d’etat by a particular group of politicians and bureaucrats,” he told a press conference in Tokyo. “I believe the secrecy bill will eventually lead to the repression of the average person. It will allow those in power to crack down on anyone who is criticising them – the path we are on is the recreation of a fascist state.” He said the withholding of radiation data after the Fukushima disaster showed the Japanese government was predisposed to hiding information from its citizens and this law would only make things worse. [...] The Asahi Shimbun newspaper likened the law to “conspiracy” regulations in pre-war Japan and said it could be used to stymie access to facts on nuclear accidents [...]
- Fisa court order that allowed NSA surveillance is revealed for first time (Guardian, Nov 19, 2013):
A secret court order that authorised a massive trawl by the National Security Agency of Americans’ email and internet data was published for the first time on Monday night, among a trove of documents that also revealed a judge’s concern that the NSA “continuously” and “systematically” violated the limits placed on the program.
The order by the Fisa court, almost certainly its first ruling on the controversial program and published only in heavily redacted form, shows that it granted permisson for the trawl in part beacause of the type of devices used for the surveillance. Even the judge approving the spying called it a “novel use” of government authorities.
Another later court order found that what it called “systemic overcollection” had taken place.
“The more laws and order are made prominent, the more thieves and robbers there will be.”
– Lao Tzu
“The more laws, the less justice.”
– Marcus Tullius Cicero
“Fascism should rightly be called Corporatism, as it is the merger of corporate and government power.”
- Benito Mussolini
- How Washington D.C. is Sucking the Life Out of America (Liberty Blitzkrieg, Nov 19, 2013):
The more corrupt the state, the more numerous the laws.
Ever since I started writing about what is happening in the world around me, my primary theme has been that the root cancer at the core of the U.S., and indeed global economy, is cronyism and an absence of the rule of law when it comes to oligarchs. In the U.S., this cronyism is best described as an insidious relationship between large multi-national corporations and big government to funnel all of the wealth and resources of the nation to themselves at the expense of everyone else. In a genuine free market defined by heightened competition and governed by an equal application of the rule of law to all, the 0.1% does not aggregate all of a nation’s wealth. This sort of thing only happens in crony capitalism, which is basically nothing more than complete and total insider deals to aggregate newly created money into the hands of the few.
The following profile of Washington D.C.’s so-called “boom” from the St. Louis Post-Dispatch pretty much tells you all you need to know. While I think the tone of the article is absurd considering this is no “economic boom,” but merely parasitic wealth extraction on a unprecedented scale, it is still quite telling. It is no coincidence that as D.C. has grown wealthier, the nation has become much, much poorer. Key excerpts below: Continue reading »
- The UK’s Conservative Party has Erased a Decade Worth of Speeches from the Web (Liberty Blitzkrieg, Nov 13, 2013):
“In the walls of the cubicle there were three orifices. To the right of the speakwrite, a small pneumatic tube for written messages, to the left, a larger one for newspapers; and in the side wall, within easy reach of Winston’s arm, a large oblong slit protected by a wire grating. This last was for the disposal of waste paper. Similar slits existed in thousands or tens of thousands throughout the building, not only in every room but at short intervals in every corridor. For some reason they were nicknamed memory holes. When one knew that any document was due for destruction, or even when one saw a scrap of waste paper lying about, it was an automatic action to lift the flap of the nearest memory hole and drop it in, whereupon it would be whirled away on a current of warm air to the enormous furnaces which were hidden somewhere in the recesses of the building.”
- From George Orwell’s 1984
As many of you will recall, the protagonist in George Orwell’s classic novel 1984 (sales of the book exploded higher this past June following the Snowden revelations) was a man named Winston Smith who worked for the Ministry of Truth. One of his key functions was to revise old newspaper articles in order to make them consistent with the ever changing propaganda intentions of Big Brother.
Apparently 1984 really was an instruction manual, particularly for the Conservative Tory Party in the UK. Incredibly, not only did it go back and delete ten years of speeches from their website, they have taken the extra step to block their access via the Internet Archive. Compete and total desperation has set in across the pond…
From the Guardian:
¨The party has removed the archive from its public website, erasing records of speeches and press releases from 2000 until May 2010. The effect will be to remove any speeches and articles during the Tories’ modernisation period, including its commitment to spend the same as a Labour government.
In a remarkable step the party has also blocked access to the Internet Archive’s Wayback Machine, a US-based library that captures webpages for future generations, using a software robot that directs search engines not to access the pages.
- Mass Surveillance and Europe’s Police State (Global Research, Nov 10, 2013):
A new study says so. It’s titled “Mass Surveillance of Personal Data by EU Member States and its Compatibility with EU Law.”
Sergio Carrera is a Spanish jurist. Francesco Ragazzi is Netherlands-based Leiden University Professor of International Relations.
They co-wrote the study. They did so with Didier Bigo, Nicholas Hernanz, Julien Jeandesboz, Joanna Parkin, and Amandine Scherrer.
The European Parliament’s Committee on Civil Liberties, Justice and Home Affairs commissioned it.
- The U.S. Secret State and the Internet: “Dirty Secrets” and “Crypto Wars” from “Clipper Chip” and ECHELON to PRISM (Global Research, Nov 10, 2013):
Back in the 1990s, security researchers and privacy watchdogs were alarmed by government demands that hardware and software firms build “backdoors” into their products, the millions of personal computers and cell phones propelling communication flows along the now-quaint “information superhighway.”
Never mind that the same factory-installed kit that allowed secret state agencies to troll through private communications also served as a discrete portal for criminal gangs to loot your bank account or steal your identity.
Tags: 1984, Barack Obama, Big Brother, Dictatorship, Echelon, Edward Snowden, Fascism, George Orwell, Global News, Government, Internet, New World Order, NSA, Obama administration, Politics, PRISM, U.S.
- NSA Spied on World Bank, IMF, UN, Pope, World Leaders, and American Politicians and Military Officers (ZeroHedge, Nov 2, 2013):
It was also alleged that the NSA spied on the Vatican and the Pope.
Congressman Rand Paul asks whether the NSA might be spying on President Obama as well.
Congressman Devin Nunes said in that the Department of Justice was tapping phones in the Congressional cloak room.
Sounds crazy …
But it is well-documented that the NSA was already spying on American Senators more than 40 years ago.
Tags: 1984, Barack Obama, Big Brother, Brazil, Dictatorship, Economy, EU, Europe, Fascism, George Orwell, Germany, Global News, IMF, Japan, Mexico, Military, New World Order, NSA, Obama administration, Politics, U.N., U.S., Vatican, World Bank