cue the lightning bolts

the only question that matters: is it true?

Iran has signed the NPT. As a signatory to the NPT, Iran may rightfully, legally, use nuclear technology for peaceful energy purposes. Iran has submitted to and passed repeated IAEA inspections. The US intelligence community (NIE) does not consider Iran a nuclear threat. Israel refuses to sign the NPT. Israel has an estimated several hundred undeclared nuclear weapons. Russia and China have warned that an attack on Iran will have global consequences. That's the situation in a nutshell. Where to next, people? Where to?

Have I now become your enemy by telling you the truth? - Galatians 4:16

5.09.2008

Frightening Silence

(It appears that Bush's man mini-Hariri has backed down in the confrontation with Hassan Nasrullah, so possibly the new Lebanese civil war will not take place, at least not now.)

Meanwhile, on the level of what is actually taking place in Sadr City, the reports of conditions there are fragmentary, minimized by the corporate media except for their "parental-guidance" type of entertainment value--CNN currently has a clip with the Hollywood PG rating attached to it--and except for the endless interpolations about how the US forces are merely following the lead of those crime-fighting Iraqis. But the reality is frightening.

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Hundreds Arrested Protesting Police Abuses

NEW YORK, May 8 (IPS) - She was as happy and excited about getting married that day as any young person in love. But fate had something else waiting. Just a few hours ahead of her wedding, on Nov. 25, 2006, New York City police officers killed her fiancé Sean Bell in a hail of 50 bullets.

On Wednesday, handcuffed like the more than 200 other detainees who participated in a forceful demonstration against police oppression, Paultre Bell shouted in rage: "They killed Sean all over again. I'm still praying for justice. This is far from over. Every march, every protest, I'm going to be right up front."

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The Gospel of Consumption

PRIVATE CARS WERE RELATIVELY SCARCE in 1919 and horse-drawn conveyances were still common. In residential districts, electric streetlights had not yet replaced many of the old gaslights. And within the home, electricity remained largely a luxury item for the wealthy.

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'Liberal' Israelis: Still crying and shooting after all these years

"Crying and shooting" is the term used in Israeli political discourse to describe those Israelis who agonize over what they are doing to the Palestinians, but carry on doing it anyway. It's a way for Israelis to feel better about themselves, by reasserting their liberal, progressive and humanitarian values, even as they carry out illiberal, regressive and murderous actions.

There was a wonderful example of the phenomenon last week in a column written for Ha'aretz by Bradley Burston. He wrote an agonized column - Our Defense Forces, our war crimes, our terrorism - about the disproportionate number of civilians among the Palestinians killed by the IDF, and specifically about Israeli's collective refusal to acknowledge their responsibility for the killings.

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Philadelphia police beating

Trilateral Commission: Global Elite gather in DC

The Trilateral Commission—one of the three most powerful globalist groups in the world—held closed-door meetings right here in Washington, D.C. from April 25 to 28. True to form, those members of the media who knew about the meeting—or were themselves participants in the proceedings—refused to discuss what went on inside or report on the attendees. Luckily, AFP’s own editor, Jim Tucker, was on the scene to bust this clandestine confabulation wide open.

Luminaries at the Trilateral Commission meeting in Washington expressed confidence that they own all three major presidential candidates, who, despite political posturing, will support sovereignty-surrendering measures such as NAFTA and the “North American Union.”

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US immigration raids are about to get ugly

Letters listing millions of Social Security “no-match” workers are ready to mail to employers.

The Immigration and Customs Enforcement agency personnel are trained and ready. Buses and vans are standing by for raids. Detention facilities have expanded.

All that is lacking is clearance from the courts.

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Olmert suspected of receiving funds

The powers that be must want him out because it always raises an eyebrow when all of a sudden known criminals get 'caught' doing something wrong. - Ed.

Israeli Prime Minister Ehud Olmert, responding to fresh accusations that he illegally accepted hundreds of thousands of dollars from a U.S. citizen, on Thursday said he will step down if he is indicted.

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Report pushes passage of thought crimes bill

The Internet is now becoming a new front in the phony terror war. Legislation like the Violent Radicalization and Homegrown Terrorism Prevention Act of 2007 that is in the forms of HR 1955 and S 1959 which seek to give the government powers to define thoughts and belief systems as homegrown terrorism, is on the brink of being pushed down our throats. HR 1955 was passed by the U.S. House of Representatives by a vote of 404-6 and now it appears as if the U.S. Senate is attempting to justify its future passage.

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Bush's Conspiracy to Create an American Police State

It was David Hume's 1758 Of the First Principles of Government that stated:

Nothing appears more surprising to those who consider human affairs with a philosophical eye than the easiness with which the many are governed by the few, and the implicit submission with which men resign their own sentiments and passions to those of their rulers.

When we inquire by what means this wonder is effected, we shall find that, as force is always on the side of the governed, the governors have nothing to support them but opinion. It is, therefore, on opinion only that government is founded, and this maxim extends to the most despotic and most military governments as well as to the most free and most popular.

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12 stepping our way to Armageddon

I recently received an email from a reader, frustrated with my insistence on holding a vision of what is possible alongside the dismal, inevitable current realities of civilization's collapse. Admonishing me to bear in mind America's Oprah and NASCAR world view and therefore abdicate any sense of optimism I might have, this reader accused me of suggesting that we should 12 Step our way through Armageddon. Rather than being offended, however, I was overcome with gratitude for this reader's image, frustrated with me as he may be, because in spite of the regular "wordsmithing" that I do as a writer, I always feel a sense of relief and validation when someone else gives words that I may not yet have for what I've been thinking, feeling, or doing.

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5.08.2008

Twilight of American Empire

The fall of the American empire resembles that of Rome in several areas but primarily --military and economic. The economies of the US and Rome ultimately depended on conquest. To this end, the US was sold to the Military/Industrial complex for whom 'conquest' is both an addictive drug and a life's blood. By the time the Roman Empire was sold at auction to one Didius Julianus, Rome's currency had already collapsed, as the dollar is likewise endangered. The smart money had already dumped sestercius for Greek Drachmas and the sale of the empire was concluded in Greek currency --not Roman.

Today, the currency of choice is neither the US dollar nor the Euro. It's oil and because Iran would prefer to sell oil for Euros, nations wishing to buy oil must exchange their dollars for Euros. Iran is threatened because it possesses a precious resource no longer produced economically in the US --oil! Rome was likewise impoverished. The sestercius was essentially worthless. It doesn't require an economics degree to conclude that Rome invaded Dacia for its gold and that the US will attack Iran for its oil.

Lacking oil, lacking a currency of choice, the American empire is finished! Just like Rome!

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Greenwald: Neocons and the Truth: Bitter enemies to the end

In a July, 2006 article in Rolling Stone -- entitled "Iran: The Next War" -- the superb journalist James Bamford detailed the shady activities of numerous neoconservatives inside and out of the U.S. Government to plan an attack on Iran. Bamford focused on the role played by Michael Ledeen of the American Enterprise Institute and National Review, who created and began implementing an attack scheme in coordination with the Pentagon's then number-three official, Doug Feith, and Feith's deputy, Larry Franklin (subsequently convicted of felonies for passing classified information to AIPAC).

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Palestine Think Tank site is born today

Haitham Sabbah, Mary Rizzo and Gilad Atzmon are very pleased to announce their new site, Palestine Think Tank. It is a site containing news, analysis, art and more to further the cause of justice for Palestinians. It concentrates on many aspects of the resistance, but also focuses on the issues affecting the entire Middle East. Please visit us at www.palestinethinktank.com, share this news with those who might be interested, and if you have a blog or site, consider linking to us. We also have a forum for those interested in interactive communication.

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Palestine Think Tank

Russia 'expels US embassy staff'

Russia has ordered the expulsion of two military attaches from the American embassy in Moscow, US officials say.

The US state department said it would comply with the order although it objected to it.

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Newspaper Criticized for Publishing Photo

Americans shocked, SHOCKED, to learn that children are being killed in Iraq by the US military. - Ed.

WASHINGTON -- Some readers resented The Washington Post for publishing an Associated Press photograph of a critically wounded Iraqi child being lifted from the rubble of his home in Baghdad’s Sadr City “after a U.S. airstrike.”

Two-year-old Ali Hussein later died in a hospital.

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Beating the Drums of a Broader Middle East War

The Levant could be the starting point of a major international conflict with global ramifications and which could quickly spin out of control. Such a conflict could even involve the use of Israeli or American nuclear weapons against Iran and Syria. Syria has additionally declared that it is preparing for an inevitable war with Israel despite the fact that it believes that the chances of a war in 2008 are slim.

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Special Counsel (Scott Bloch) shut down probe of Seigelman case last year

WASHINGTON (AP) — The U.S. Office of Special Counsel last year shut down a previously undisclosed investigation into the federal prosecution of former Alabama Gov. Don Siegelman, according to an internal memo made public Wednesday.

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More info here.

5.07.2008

Condi Stomps the Mullahs

The war drums are again beating. It's beginning to look like the neocons have cranked up their useful idiots in the Bush administration for a fall offensive, target Iran. And maybe also Syria, Lebanon, and the Palestinians. The bad guys' list, which is remarkably similar to a roll call of Israel's enemies, seems to have expanded both vertically and horizontally at a time when the U.S. military is using paper clips and chewing gum to hold together its efforts in Iraq. The critique of Iran has sharpened and intensified and new friends of Iran have been discovered in Afghanistan and Gaza.

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Whatever Happened to Never Again?

The Above is a speculative map of known ICE DRO, FEMA, and Military personnel holding facilities in the United States, either Completed, Empty, In Use, or under construction in the United States. Click the image for a clearer view. My apologies for not having a link to the original interactive map.

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Lying our way to Tehran

As can be seen from our earlier post (Maybe We Should Just Relax, below), we are concerned that the Bush Administration is fixated on a bombing campaign designed to cripple Iran’s nuclear program, although this topic has largely disappeared from the media. We watch nervously for signs of activity, remarks by Bush or Cheney, unexplained force deployments or curious arrangements of the tea leaves in our cup.

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Jack Carter: What really happened at Minot?

A Minot airman has supplied Project Camelot with detailed answers to these and other questions. The information is of such importance that we have felt obliged to present it as a stand-alone follow-up report.

The name we have given our source, Jack Carter, is a pseudonym. We have not yet met him, but have conducted extensive correspondence by e-mail. We are confident that he is exactly who he says he is: an experienced airman with extensive personal experience of nuclear weapons security procedures at Minot AFB.

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Feds take over NCC Fairgrounds (Iowa) for May training exercise

But it's all a big secret and the public may not have the details. - Ed.

WATERLOO--- Normal operations on the National Cattle Congress fairgrounds have been suspended for most of May as the federal government has leased out virtually the entire facility for a training exercise, NCC general manager Doug Miller said Saturday.

Miller said he could release few details. But activity on the NCC fairgrounds was apparent Saturday, as contractors installed massive generators adjacent to many buildings on the NCC fairgrounds and windows of many of the buildings were covered up, blocking views of any work going on inside. A number of large mobile home-size trailers also have taken up residence on the site in the past several weeks.

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Is the earth getting warmer, or cooler?

Is NASA fiddling with data? - Ed.

A paper published in scientific journal Nature this week has reignited the debate about Global Warming, by predicting that the earth won't be getting any warmer until 2015. Researchers at the Leibniz Institute of Marine Sciences have factored in cyclical oceanic into their climate model, and produced a different forecast to the "consensus" models which don't.

But how will we know whether the earth is warming or cooling? Today, it all depends on the data source.

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Don Clark's Big Lie about Roland Carnaby

I'll try to make this brief. Being modern Americans, both you and I have short attention spans. That's how stories like the following get memory holed. We don't pay attention.

On April 29, 2008, Roland Carnaby was shot down in the street by the Houston Police Department. The capital crime he committed was running from the cops after a traffic stop.

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FBI raids special counsels office

This guy heads up the office responsible for protecting government whistle-blowers, and it looks like he's dirty, dirty, dirty. I know...imagine my shock. - Ed.

The FBI has raided the office of U.S. Special Counsel Scott Bloch in an inquiry of whether he obstructed justice by having his computer files erased.

FBI officials said computers and documents were seized from Bloch's office during the raid Tuesday morning.

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More info here, including this quote:

    "It is shocking that the individual who is primarily responsible for investigating federal whistleblower complaints would be the target of an investigation in which he and his staff are suspected of obstructing justice."

    "The Bush administration must take whistleblower protection seriously, relieve Mr. Bloch of his position, and appoint a Special Counsel who possesses the necessary qualifications and integrity to do the job right."

Primary Results favor Obama

Update from WSJ: David Axelrod, the top Obama strategist, told reporters that Barack Obama would compete for the six remaining Democratic contests, where 217 delegates are at stake. But he said that the campaign would soon focus on the general election because likely Republican nominee John McCain had “basically run free for some time now because we’ve been consumed with this.” He added: “I don’t think we’re going to spend time solely in primary states.”

Gee, d'ya think? This entire interminable democratic primary campaign has been an awesome diversion benefiting George Bush, John McCain, the Republican Party, etc. - Ed.

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5.06.2008

Death's Factotum: Michael Gordon and the Times pour Pentagon poison into nation's ear

Judith Miller might have been the poster child for the corporate media's collaboration with the Bush Administration's war of aggression against Iraq -- but her New York Times colleague and co-writer, Michael Gordon, was every bit as culpable and complicit, happily playing stovepipe to the bloodthirsty bullshit gurgling up from the White House and Pentagon cesspits.

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Kunstler: The Risk Economy

As the West's industrial regime sputters toward a cheap-energy-crackup conclusion, there have been attempts to recast what our economy is actually about, how to account for whatever wealth we manage to produce, and project what our society will actually be organized to do in the years ahead.

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Do you have a plan?

Great advice here. - Ed.

Despite the propaganda coming out of Washington, DC., millions of Americans are in deep financial trouble. Last week the media cranked up the mantra that Wall Street may be getting more optimistic. Really?

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Democrats prepare to sell out on Telecom Immunity

As revelations of the Bush administration's illegal surveillance programs continue to expose the criminal nature of the regime in Washington, new reports suggest that House Democrats are preparing to capitulate to the White House on warrantless wiretapping and amnesty for lawbreaking telecoms.

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Pandemic Response Plan: let the elderly, the sick, and the poor die

It's very difficult not to view this is part of some larger planning. - Ed.

The Bush-Cheney administration’s Department of Homeland Security, the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), and the Department of Health and Human Services (HHS) have collectively set guidelines that recommend---in the event of a "pandemic" or mass crisis---that the elderly, the sick, the severely injured, and the poor will be denied life-saving medical treatment.

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Pay Attention, This is how they'll sell war with Iran

I think we’re going to war with Iran, and I think it’ll happen this summer. I think it’s already been decided and all we’re looking for now is a way to motivate the American sheeple into getting behind it. Here’s a list of ways to do just that.

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General Petraeus: Zionism's Military Poodle. From Surge to Purge to Dirge

When President Bush appointed General David Petraeus Commander (head) of the Multinational Forces in Iraq, his appointment was hailed by the New York Times, the Wall Street Journal and the Washington Post as a brilliant decision.

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Cheney's Total Impunity

How far will Vice President Cheney go to shield himself and his office from public scrutiny?

Last spring, Cheney asserted that he wasn't subject to executive-branch rules about classified information because he wasn't actually part of the executive branch.

Now his office argues that he and his staff are completely immune from congressional oversight. That's right: Completely immune.

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Iran rejects nuclear inspections unless Israel allows them

GENEVA - An Iranian envoy said Monday his government will not submit to extensive nuclear inspections while Israel stays outside the global treaty to curb the spread of atomic weapons.

"The existing double standard shall not be tolerated anymore by non-nuclear-weapon states," Ambassador Ali Asghar Soltanieh told a meeting of the 190 countries that have signed the Nuclear Nonproliferation Treaty.

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Ritter says attack on Iran 'virtual guarantee'

Former UN weapons inspector Scott Ritter, who was among the original experts to question Bush Administration claims that Iraq had weapons of mass destruction, now says he believes an attack on Iran is a "virtual guarantee."

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Soldier Suicides could trump war tolls: US health officials

Suicides and "psychological mortality" among US soldiers who served in Iraq and Afghanistan could exceed battlefield deaths if their mental scars are left untreated, the head of the US Institute of Mental Health warned Monday.

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5.05.2008

General Petraues: Zionism's Military Poodle: From Surge to Purge to Dirge

Scathing. - Ed.

When President Bush appointed General David Petraeus Commander (head) of the Multinational Forces in Iraq, his appointment was hailed by the New York Times, the Wall Street Journal and the Washington Post as a brilliant decision: A general of impeccable academic and battlefield credentials and a warrior and counter-insurgency (terrorist) intellectual. The media and the President, the Republicans and Democrats in the Senate and Congress, described his appointment as ‘America’s last best hope for salvation in Iraq’. Senator Hilary Clinton joined the chorus of pro-war politicians in praise and support of Petraeus’ ‘professionalism and war record’ in Northern Iraq. In contrast, Admiral William Fallon, his predecessor and former commander, had called Petraeus’ briefings ‘a piece of brown-nosing chicken shit’.

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Bush-Cheney Israel Disinformation Campaign to Justify an Attack on Iran

The Bush administration and Israeli government appear to be operating a joint disinformation campaign, whose objective is to establish a media based alternative reality from which to accuse Syria/Iran of developing nuclear weapons with help from North Korea, by using a real event combined with planted stories establishing a defining narrative. This accusation in turn is augmented with stories about Iranian sponsored "Special Groups killing US troops in Iraq" and purported naval incidents the Persian Gulf, creating self-reinforcing, media based crisis.

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Global Famine

Famine is the result of a process of "free market" restructuring of the global economy which has its roots in the debt crisis of the early 1980s. It is not a recent phenomenon as suggested by several Western media reports. The latter narrowly focus on short-term supply and demand for agricultural staples, while obfuscating the broader structural causes of global famine.

Poverty and chronic undernourishment is a pre-existing condition. The recent hikes in food prices have contributed to exacerbating and aggravating the food crisis. The price hikes are hitting an impoverished population, which has barely the means to survive.

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'Perhaps 60% of today's oil price is pure speculation'

The price of crude oil today is not made according to any traditional relation of supply to demand. It’s controlled by an elaborate financial market system as well as by the four major Anglo-American oil companies. As much as 60% of today’s crude oil price is pure speculation driven by large trader banks and hedge funds. It has nothing to do with the convenient myths of Peak Oil. It has to do with control of oil and its price. How?

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Is this man John McCain's worst nightmare?

Bob Barr, former GOP congressman from Georgia, is an all-but-announced presidential candidate - as a Libertarian.

The possibility of a run by Barr has sent shudders through the mainstream of the Republican party.

Barr, who will probably not declare his intentions for several days, has already been labeled a "spoiler."

In an interview with the Inquirer, Barr dismissed those accusations as whining.

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Multinationals make billions in profit out of growing global food crisis

Imagine my shock. All that funny money the financial giants refuse to write off as losses is being shuffled around into commodities like food and oil, driving up the prices and leading to poor people starving to death. - Ed.

Giant agribusinesses are enjoying soaring earnings and profits out of the world food crisis which is driving millions of people towards starvation, The Independent on Sunday can reveal. And speculation is helping to drive the prices of basic foodstuffs out of the reach of the hungry.

The prices of wheat, corn and rice have soared over the past year driving the world's poor – who already spend about 80 per cent of their income on food – into hunger and destitution.

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Golden Nuggets: Sexing up an Iranian war

How many Muslim lives can you get for a "golden nugget"?

Back in 2003, after the start of the Iraq invasion, then chairman of the UK's Joint Intelligence Committee (JIC) and current head of British overseas intelligence agency MI6, requested that "ten golden nuggets" be included in the US-backed Iraq Survey Group's report on WMD's in Iraq.

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US is drawing up plans to strike on Iranian insurgency camp

The US military is drawing up plans for a “surgical strike” against an insurgent training camp inside Iran if Republican Guards continue with attempts to destabilise Iraq, western intelligence sources said last week. One source said the Americans were growing increasingly angry at the involvement of the Guards’ special-operations Quds force inside Iraq, training Shi’ite militias and smuggling weapons into the country.

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Smoking Mirrors: Pick up your magic wand and let's do some magic

No doubt most of us have heard of a factor called ‘home court advantage’ in relation to sporting events. In some sports this is a bigger factor than in others. That it is a truth is undeniable. It’s an interesting fact that if a smaller dog attacks a larger dog on its home turf that the larger dog will generally be driven off. We’ve seen this in war zones like Vietnam and the present day Middle East conflicts where more superior armed invaders have been driven back or had their advantage neutralized because they were fighting an ‘away war’. I was thinking about ‘home court advantage’ earlier and in the process a number of things came into my mind about it.

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Slavery and Involuntary Servitude

The Thirteenth Amendment of the Constitution, adopted at the end of the civil War in 1865, abolished slavery, but this same amendment expressly permits prison slavery and involuntary servitude.

AMENDMENT XIII – SECTION 1

Neither slavery nor involuntary servitude, except as punishment for crime whereof the party shall have been duly convicted, shall exist within the United States, or any place subject to their jurisdiction.

The United States has less than 5 percent of the world’s population and almost 25 percent of the world’s prisoners. Are Americans more criminal than other folks? Or are there incentives that give the US the dubious honor of leading the world in prison population.

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Tell me again why 'conspiracy theory' is a dirty label

Whenever any claim is made that the government has done anything wrong, government apologists say "that's a conspiracy theory!"

Well, let's examine what the people trained to weigh evidence and reach conclusions think about "conspiracies". Let's look at what American judges think.

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