- Iran Gets an Unlikely Visitor, an American Plane, but No One Seems to Know Why (New York Times, Aprill 18, 2014):
President Obama has warned that Iran is not open for business, even as the United States has loosened some of its punishing economic sanctions as part of an interim nuclear pact.
Yet on Tuesday morning, Iran had an unlikely visitor: a plane, owned by the Bank of Utah, a community bank in Ogden that has 13 branches throughout the state. Bearing a small American flag on its tail, the aircraft was parked in a highly visible section of Mehrabad Airport in Tehran.
But from there, the story surrounding the plane, and why it was in Iran — where all but a few United States and European business activities are prohibited — grows more mysterious.
- The Political Conspiracy Behind the Bankruptcy of Detroit: Anatomy of a Crime (WSWS, Feb 21, 2014):
The Workers Inquiry into the Bankruptcy of Detroit and the Attack on the DIA & Pensions was held Saturday February 15 at Wayne State University. The WSWS published an initial report on the meeting on February 17. Today we publish an edited version of the report to the Inquiry delivered by Larry Porter, assistant national secretary of the Socialist Equality Party and chairman of the Workers Inquiry.
Video coverage of Lawrence Porter’s full report to the Inquiry
Why was Detroit taken into bankruptcy?
In my report, I have the responsibility of uncovering the evidence of a crime.
- Hyper-Sensitive Illinois Mayor Orders Police Raid Over Parody Twitter Account (Liberty Blitzkrieg, April 19, 2014):
Just yesterday, I wrote a post about how a South Carolina construction worker was fined $525 and lost his job for not paying $0.89 for a drink refill while working at the Ralph H. Johnson VA Medical Center in downtown Charleston. The point was to emphasize how the law comes down with a devastating vengeance when an average citizen commits a minor crime, yet allows the super rich to loot and pillage with zero repercussions. There is now a systemic two-tier justice system operating in these United States, and the result will unquestionably be tyranny if the trend continues unabated.
The latest example of a lowly citizen being subject to a disproportionate use of the law, is Jon Daniel of Peoria, Illinois. Jon was behind a parody Twitter account that mocked Peoria mayor Jim Ardis, and his biggest mistake was not making it clear that it was a parody. As a result, Twitter had already suspended the account weeks ago. Problem solved, right? Wrong.
The tough guy mayor was so offended that a plebe would dare criticize his royal highness that he ordered a police raid on the home of Jon Daniel and his roommates. Peoria native, Justin Glawe wrote an excellent article on the subject for Vice. He writes:
Jon Daniel woke up on Thursday morning to a news crew in his living room, which was a welcome change from the company he had on Tuesday night, when the Peoria, Illinois, police came crashing through the door. The officers tore the 28-year-old’s home apart, seizing electronics and taking several of his roommates in for questioning; one woman who lived there spent three hours in an interrogation room. All for a parody Twitter account.
- Obama’s First-Amendment Defense of Political Liars (Washington’s Blog, April 18, 2014):
By Eric Zuesse
President Obama, through his U.S. Solicitor General, arguing before the U.S. Supreme Court, has now stated that lying in political campaigns isn’t merely protected by the First Amendment’s guarantee of free speech, but that it is an especially protected form of speech, which must not be hindered by any state government, such as by the state of Ohio. Ohio has outlawed such intentional deception of voters, and has established heavy criminal penalties against it, when it can be proven. The idea behind this law is that any democracy in which lying in political campaigns isn’t penalized by severe penalties, won’t remain a democracy much longer, but will instead descend into a kleptocracy: theft of elections themselves (via lies), so that they become just nominal “elections,” which are controlled by whatever aristocrats can put up the most money, to lie the most effectively, to the biggest number of voters: lying-contests.
Image by Terry Robinson
- Bankers are Behind the Wars (Washington’s Blog, April 18, 2014):
All Wars Are Bankers’ Wars
Former managing director of Goldman Sachs – and head of the international analytics group at Bear Stearns in London (Nomi Prins) - notes:
Throughout the century that I examined, which began with the Panic of 1907 … what I found by accessing the archives of each president is that through many events and periods, particular bankers were in constant communication [with the White House] — not just about financial and economic policy, and by extension trade policy, but also about aspects of World War I, or World War II, or the Cold War, in terms of the expansion that America was undergoing as a superpower in the world, politically, buoyed by the financial expansion of the banking community. Continue reading »
- BP Manager In Charge of Cleaning Up the Gulf Oil Spill – Instead of Actually Cleaning Up – Committed Insider Trading and Sold $1 Million of BP Stock Before the Extent of the Spill Became Public Knowledge (Washington’s Blog, April 18, 2014):
The Head of BP Also Sold Shares After Problems With the Well Were Apparent to Insiders
The Securities and Exchange Commission announced today:
The Securities and Exchange Commission today charged a former 20-year employee of BP p.l.c. and a senior responder during the 2010 Deepwater Horizon oil spill with insider trading in BP securities based on confidential information about the magnitude of the disaster. The price of BP securities fell significantly after the April 20, 2010 explosion on the Deepwater Horizon rig and the subsequent oil spill in the Gulf of Mexico, resulted in an extensive clean-up effort.
- New court decision destroys the last element of the justice system (Sovereign Man, April 18, 2014):
In the Land of the Free, people grow up hearing a lot of things about their freedom.
You’re told that you live in the freest country on the planet. You’re told that other nations ‘hate you’ for your freedom.
And you’re told that you have the most open and fair justice system in the world.
The infamous accident at Pennsylvania’s Three Mile Island power facility is typically the first meltdown that comes to mind when people think about nuclear disasters in America. While CNN has reported that it was the worst nuclear meltdown ever in the United States, they are wrong.
The under-reported nuclear meltdown at the Santa Susana Field Laboratory in the late 1950s was far worse, and in fact, it is the worst nuclear disaster in United States history.
- Medicated to Death: SSRIs and Mass Killings (The Corbett Report, April 16, 2014):
In May 1998, 15 year old Kip Kinkel murdered his parents and two classmates, as well as injuring 25 others, after engaging in a shooting spree that ended up in his school’s cafeteria. In the investigation it emerged that he had been taking popular antidepressant medication Prozac since the summer of the previous year.
In December 2000, Michael McDermott went on a shooting rampage at his workplace, Edgewater Technologies, killing seven of his co-workers. During his trial, the court heard testimony that in the weeks before the shooting, McDermott had tripled the dosage of his antidepressant medication, Prozac, from 70 milligrams per day to 210 milligrams.
In March 2005, 16 year old Jeff Weise shot and killed nine people, including five students at Red Lake Senior High School in Minnesota, before turning the gun on himself. It was later revealed he had been undergoing treatment for depression and had been on Prozac at the time.
- The Silent Hybrid Motorcycles the Pentagon Will Use for Stealth Raids (Wired, April 18, 2014):
Special Forces teams are all about silently penetrating remote areas and executing complex, lightning-fast raids. Now DARPA is developing a new vehicle to soundlessly race commandoes to their missions: stealthy, hybrid-powered motorcycles.
The idea is to develop a hybrid power system that relies on both electric and gas power, allowing special ops to go off-road and zip past enemy forces with the silence of an electric engine, while also being able to handle extended missions and higher speeds with a supplemental gas tank.
In February, DARPA awarded Logos Technologies a $100,000, six-month Phase I Small Business Innovation Research (SBIR) contract for a preliminary design to see just how viable the project is.
- Evidence of BLM’s Deadly Abuse of Animals Taken from Bundy Ranch (21st Century Wire, April 16, 2014):
The US federal government might have just evoked the fury of animal right groups over their shocking treatment of cattle at the Bundy Ranch, and may soon face legal charges of severe animal abuse in Clark County, Nevada.
Federal agency’s treatment of residents at the Bundy Ranch this past week included tasering, beating, wrongful arrest, threatening residents with attack dogs, and mobilizing a federal paramilitary force whose barrels were trained on US citizens, all in all, spending at least $3 million of tax payer money in an effort to sell stolen cattle over state lines in Utah and California. A legal argument has also been made that the USDepartment of Interior’s Bureau of Land Management (BLM) is now guilty of racketeering under the federal RIC) statute (Racketeer Influenced and Corruption Organizations). If all that wasn’t enough, evidence is now emerging regarding pattern of extreme cruelty and abuse, and suspected culling of animals from the Bundy Ranch.
Nevada Assemblywoman Michelle Fiore has released new shocking information and images which document the horrors which BLM agents have inflicted on previously happy and healthy livestock.
— Michele Fiore (@VoteFiore) April 15, 2014
During a live radio broadcast of The Pete Santilli Show on GNM, Fiore reveals new details of “the BLM’s method of herding where they have slaughtered horses and cows. This time we have video of it, and pictures of it.”
- NBC: Record level of sick or injured California seals and sea lions turning up — “The numbers are extraordinary” — “Scientists worried… The worst kind of perfect storm” — Pups should be weighing 2 or 3 times as much, “severely malnourished” (VIDEO) (ENENews, April 18, 2014):
NBC Bay Area, Apr. 18, 2014: Seals and sea lions in California are turning up sick or injured at a record pace this year. Sausalito’s Marine Mammal Center has more animals in its care right now than ever before in its 39-year history. There are three factors at play: First of all, this is the time of year when pups get stranded or separated from their mothers for an unknown reason. Also last year’s sea lion epidemic sent malnourished, sick pups onto California shores at record levels. On top of that, a Monterey Bay algae bloom is making a lot of animals sick. Experts say it’s creating the worst kind of perfect storm.
- President Obama: ‘I’m proud that even in these difficult times we’ve fought for and secured the most funding for Israel in history’ – ‘I am proud to say that no US administration has done more in support of Israel’s security than ours. None. Don’t let anyone else tell you otherwise. It is a fact.’
Added: Apr 12, 2014
Continue reading »
… other than droning Monsanto.
- How You Can Help Prevent Decline of Monarch Butterflies Due to Roundup-Ready Genetically Engineered Crops (EcoWatch, Oct 30, 2013):
Home gardeners can help offset the falling numbers of monarch butterflies due to herbicides and a new study shows U.S. citizens are willing to pay for it.
Milkweed—the only plant on which monarchs lay their eggs—is being eradicated by the herbicide glyphosate, which is sprayed on roadsides, pastures and fields where genetically modified, Roundup-ready corn and soy crops are grown, resulting in the loss of more than 80 million acres of monarch habitat in recent years, reports MonarchWatch.
The number of monarch butterflies has steadily dropped around 80 percent or more by some estimates in the past 15 years, barely recovering from the lowest plummet in 2009 to 2010. The good news is that home gardeners can help offset the threat simply by planting milkweed or building waystations to offset the loss of milkweed habitats.
- The Killer Klansman’s Missing Years as a Federal Informant (The Daily Beast, April 15, 2014):
White supremacist Frazier Glenn Miller, arrested in three killings Sunday, turned white opportunist when facing decades in prison, testifying against his fellow haters in two trials.
A quarter-century before he was charged with Sunday’s three hate murders outside Kansas City, Frazier Glenn Miller figured prominently in a triple hate homicide in North Carolina.People intimately familiar with the earlier case say Miller, founder of a Ku Klux Klan chapter and a white political party, should have been a prime suspect in those killings, as well.
Instead Miller became a star witness in both that murder trial and in a sedition case against 13 fellow white supremacists.
Miller had proved himself to be not so much a white supremacist as a white opportunist when he found himself facing decades in prison on weapons charges in 1987. He has said that a lead prosecutor threatened to pile on individual sentences on various charges until they totaled 200 years.
Miller made a deal for just five years.
And he would only have to serve three.
War is peace.
Freedom is slavery.
Ignorance is strength.
- Reid: Bundy Supporters Are “Domestic Terrorists” (CBS News, April 17, 2014):
(LAS VEGAS, KXNT)–Supporters of Bunkerville rancher Cliven Bundy have been called domestic terrorists by Senator Harry Reid.
He made the comments during an appearance at a Review-Journal event, and repeated them, saying “what happened there was domestic terrorism’
The government says Bundy owes more than a million dollars in grazing fees and fines stemming from a 20-year dispute over trespass cattle. After obtaining court orders and beginning a roundup of cattle more than a week ago, BLM backed down, called off the roundup, and returned the cattle, after armed supporters of Bundy converged on the area.
- 58 Killed, More Than 100 Injured After UN Base Attacked in South Sudan (Common Dreams, April 18, 2014):
Internally displaced targeted in assault on peacekeeper encampment
The United Nations said Friday at least 58 people were killed and more than 100 others wounded in an attack against one of its bases in South Sudan sheltering thousands of civilians. (Map: Agence France-Presse)The United Nations is condemning a violent attack on a peacekeeper’s base in South Sudan on Thursday that left 58 people dead and more than 100 unjured.
The base, according to the UN, was safeguarding civilians when it came under attack by militants wielding automatic guns and rocket-fired grenades.
- Are You Ready For The Price Of Food To More Than Double By The End Of This Decade? (Economic Collapse, April 18, 2014):
Do you think that the price of food is high now? Just wait. If current trends continue, many of the most common food items that Americans buy will cost more than twice as much by the end of this decade. Global demand for food continues to rise steadily as crippling droughts ravage key agricultural regions all over the planet. You see, it isn’t just the multi-year California drought that is affecting food prices. Down in Brazil (one of the leading exporters of food in the world), the drought has gotten so bad that 142 cities were rationing water at one point earlier this year. And outbreaks of disease are also having a significant impact on our food supply. A devastating pig virus that has never been seen in the U.S. before has already killed up to 6 million pigs. Even if nothing else bad happens (and that is a very questionable assumption to make), our food prices are going to be moving aggressively upward for the foreseeable future. But what if something does happen? In recent years, global food reserves have dipped to extremely low levels, and a single major global event (war, pandemic, terror attack, planetary natural disaster, etc.) could create an unprecedented global food crisis very rapidly.
- 18 Stats That Prove That Government Dependence Has Reached Epidemic Levels (The American Dream, April 17, 2014):
Did you know that the number of Americans getting benefits from the federal government each month exceeds the number of full-time workers in the private sector by more than 60 million? In other words, the number of people that are taking money out of the system is far greater than the number of people that are putting money into the system. And did you know that nearly 70 percent of all of the money that the federal government spends goes toward entitlement and welfare programs? When it comes to the transfer of wealth, nobody does it on a grander scale than the U.S. government. Most of what the government does involves taking money from some people and giving it to other people. In fact, at this point that is the primary function of the federal government. Continue reading »
- Two More Victims Of The Retail Apocalypse: Family Dollar And Coldwater Creek (Economic Collapse, April 17, 2014):
Did you know that Family Dollar is closing 370 stores? When I learned of this, I was quite stunned. I knew that retailers that serve the middle class were really struggling right now, but I had no idea that things had gotten so bad for low end stores like Family Dollar. In the post-2008 era, dollar stores had generally been one of the few bright spots in the retail industry. As millions of Americans fell out of the middle class, they were looking to stretch their family budgets as far as possible, and dollar stores helped them do that. It would be great if we could say that the reason why Family Dollar is doing so poorly is because average Americans have more money now and have resumed shopping at retailers that target the middle class, but that is not happening. Rather, as you will see later in this article, things just continue to get even worse for Americans at the low end of the income scale.
I was also surprised to learn that Coldwater Creek is closing all of their stores… Continue reading »
- NHK Special: Extremely toxic water 4,000,000 times gov’t limit in trenches between Fukushima reactors and ocean — Experts: “Source of contamination for Pacific” — “Levels too high for them to get more precise look at situation” — Reporter: Plutonium leaked out after fuel rods damaged (VIDEO) (ENENews, April 18, 2014):
NHK’s Newsline FOCUS: Inside Fukushima Daiichi, Mar. 29, 2014 (at 18:15 in): A network of trenches runs between the reactor buildings and the shore. They are flooded with extremely radioactive water that’s been trapped** there since the triple meltdown. Tepco data shows concentrations of cesium up to 4 million times above the government safety limit. Engineers estimate that the trenches hold about 15,000 tons of toxic water but radiation levels are too high for them to get a more precise look at the situation. Some experts point out these trenches are a source of contamination for the Pacific Ocean. Tepco says there’s no evidence of that yet, but it recognizes the need to act quickly. Continue reading »
Fukushima has never been under control since March 2011.
From the article:
“Following the multiple meltdown of the Fukushima plant in 2011 that was triggered by a tsunami, the Japanese government pledged to abandon nuclear power by 2010.”
Looks like the Japanese have invented time travel.
- Out of control: Fukushima manager admits to ‘embarrassing failure’ (RT, April 18, 2014):
The manager of the stricken Fukushima nuclear power plant has admitted not having full control of the facility. Contrary to the statements of the Japanese PM, TEPCO’s Akira Ono said attempts to plug the leaks of radioactive water had failed.
“It’s embarrassing to admit, but there are certain parts of the site where we don’t have full control,” Ono told reporters touring the plant this week, reported Reuters. Last year, the Japanese PM attempted to assure the world that the situation at the stricken nuclear power plant was under control.
Other recent earthquakes:
- Mexico City reports minor damage after capital hit by magnitude 7.2 earthquake (Guardian, April 18, 2014):
Residents sent running into the street during earthquake that is the most powerful to hit Mexico in several years
A powerful earthquake struck Mexico on Friday, shaking buildings in the capital and sending people running out into the street, although there were no early reports of major damage.
The magnitude 7.2 quake was centered in the south-western state of Guerrero, close to the Pacific beach resort of Acapulco, the US Geological Survey (USGS) said.
Some residents of the capital ran outdoors in their pajamas after the quake. Electricity was cut off in parts of the city and some residents said paintings fell off the walls and small parts of masonry crumbled inside apartment buildings.
- Charleston Man Receives $525 Federal Fine for Failing to Pay for a $0.89 Refill (Liberty Blitzkrieg, April 17, 2014):
Some of you may wonder why of all the stories out there today I decided to focus on the $525 fine a construction worker in South Carolina received a for refilling his drink without paying. The reason is to highlight the difference between what happens when a peasant breaks the law versus when a banker does it.
In this case, citizen Christopher Lewis refilled his drink without paying at the VA Medical Center in downtown Charleston. For this horrific offense (a refill costs $0.89), he was hauled into a room by the Federal Police Force and given a ticket for $525. Even worse, he was told not to ever come back to the premises, so he ended up losing his job as well.
- Ukraine “De-escalation” Voided As Pro-Russia Militia Refuse To Vacate Occupied Buildings (ZeroHedge, April 18, 2014):
If yesterday we had questions about the half life of the effectiveness of the latest diplomatic de-escalation of Ukraine tensions ‘achieved’ in Geneva, following news that both Ukraine would continue its anti-terrorist operation and that fighting had broken out in various east Ukraine locations after the agreement, today any questions have been swept aside following news that the Ukraine “separatist” milita, who after all is the primary object of Ukraine “anti-terrorist activities”, has announced that they will only leave the occupied east Ukraine buildings if the interim government in Kiev resigns. Denis Pushilin, a spokesman of the self-appointed Donetsk People’s Republic, told reporters that the insurgents do not recognize the Ukrainian government as legitimate.
Indeed, in an amusing twist, the militia has flipped the Geneva agreement on its head, alleging that if they are to abide by a signed document, so should the “illegitimate” government, which as a reminder took power following a US-assisted coup, even though an explicit agreement was signed on February 21 between Ukraine and western powers previously retaining Yanukovich as president of the country, and ushering in presidential elections later in 2014. Needless to say, that agreement was made null and void within hours of signing. It is only logical, and perfectly expected, that so should this one.
“This is a reasonable agreement but everyone should vacate the buildings and that includes Yatsenyuk and Turchynov,” he said referring to the acting Ukrainian prime minister and president.
- Putin’s annual Q&A: 10 most compelling quotes (RT, April 17, 2014):
Ukraine’s crisis was, predictably, at the center of Vladimir Putin’s annual televised interview. He said the situation can only be solved through a compromise between internal players. Below are the president’s ten most significant quotes. Continue reading »
- “Hillary For President” Fundraiser Busted For Illegal Campaign Contributions (ZeroHedge, April 17, 2014):
If you listen carefully, you can hear the stampede of politicians distancing themselves from their once best-friend – Hotel magnate Sant Singh Chatwal – as AP reports, he plead guilty Thursday to charges he secretly funneled more than $180,000 in illegal campaign contributions to three unnamed candidates and coached someone to lie about it.
Without the contributions “nobody will even talk to you,” Chatwal said. “That’s the only way to buy them, get into the system.”
Welcome to the ugly truth of American politik.
The FT details that Sant Singh Chatwal, chairman of Hampshire Hotels Management, pleaded guilty on Thursday to making more than $180,000 in illegal federal campaign donations to three candidates through “straw donors” who were reimbursed, the DoJ said in a statement. Continue reading »
- Liberty Movement Rising (ALT-MArket, April 17, 2014):
“Freedom had been hunted round the globe; reason was considered as rebellion; and the slavery of fear had made men afraid to think. But such is the irresistible nature of truth, that all it asks, and all it wants, is the liberty of appearing.” – Thomas Paine
The label of “fringe” is a common one used by statists, bureaucrats and paid shills in order to marginalize those who would stand against government corruption. The primary assertion being sold is that the “majority” joyously supports the establishment; and the majority, of course, is always right.
The liberty movement, which is a collection of numerous freedom organizations and political activists brought together by a shared philosophical bond, has been accused of “fringe” status for quite some time. With corporatist dominance over the mainstream media for decades backing an elitist machine in Washington and a global banking cartel footing the bill with money created from thin air, any such accusation can be made to seem “real” to those who are unaware.
The problem has always been a matter of physical action giving rise to an acknowledgment of numbers.
We have all heard the old story of the debate within the ancient Roman government over the idea of forcing the slave population to wear distinct armbands so that they could be more easily identified among the regular population. The concept was rejected on the realization that if the slaves were given a visual confirmation of their considerable numbers and strength, they would be encouraged to revolt against the Roman tyrants. That is to say, as long as the slaves felt isolated, they would remain apathetic and powerless. Of course, that was not always the case. Sometimes, a small group would stand up despite their supposed isolation, and the rest of the world, wide-eyed and astonished, would take notice.