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


Look how the pros do it.

Here it is: the anatomy of how a false flag drive events in a certain direction. Look at the starting assumption. "We begin by assuming the attackers are Islamist militant groups."

Excuse me?? Why??? Why do we begin with that assumption?? Because that is the assumption that drives the events in a certain direction, you dummy.

What happens if we start with a different assumption? [crickets]

Well, who does that? Do you think the corporate media would ever start with a different assumption, an assumption implicating Mossad or the CIA? Surely you jest.

Don't miss the end of this piece. This whole thing hinges on the accused not being able to "demonstrate categorically" that they were not involved. Do you see? The accusation does not have to be true, it merely needs to stick. This is PURE PONEROLOGY.

About Stratfor:

Stratfor is the world’s leading online publisher of geopolitical intelligence. Our global team of intelligence professionals provides our Members with insights into political, economic, and military developments to reduce risks, to identify opportunities, and to stay aware of happenings around the globe.

Stratfor provides three types of intelligence products:

  • Situational Awareness - News is a commodity that you can get anywhere on the Internet. Situational Awareness is knowing what matters, and an intelligence professional’s responsibility - Stratfor’s responsibility - is to keep you apprised of what matters without wasting your time with clutter. We provide near real-time developments from street revolutionary movements to military invasions. OJ’s latest arrest and mudslinging in Washington and Brussels don’t make the cut.
  • Analyses - Stratfor tells its Members what events in the world actually mean. We also tell you when events are much ado about nothing. Oftentimes the seemingly momentous is geopolitically irrelevant and vice versa. We discern what’s important objectively - without ideology, a partisan agenda, or a policy prescription.
  • Forecasts - Knowing what happened yesterday is helpful; knowing what’s going to happen tomorrow is critical. Stratfor’s intelligence team makes definitive calls about what’s next. These aren’t opinions about what should happen; they’re analytically rigorous predictions of what will happen.

Stratfor provides published intelligence and customized intelligence service for private individuals, global corporations, and divisions of the US and foreign governments around the world. Stratfor intelligence professionals routinely appear at conferences and as subject-matter experts in mainstream media. Stratfor was the subject of a cover-story article in Barron’s entitled The Shadow CIA.

Stratfor was founded by Dr. George Friedman in 1996. Stratfor is privately owned and has its headquarters in Austin, TX.

- Ed.

Stratfor Analysis: Red Alert: Possible Geopolitical Consequences of Mumbai Attacks (via S O S)

If the Nov. 26 attacks in Mumbai were carried out by Islamist militants as it appears, the Indian government will have little choice, politically speaking, but to blame them on Pakistan. That will in turn spark a crisis between the two nuclear rivals that will draw the United States into the fray.

At this point the situation on the ground in Mumbai remains unclear following the militant attacks of Nov. 26. But in order to understand the geopolitical significance of what is going on, it is necessary to begin looking beyond this event at what will follow. Though the situation is still in motion, the likely consequences of the attack are less murky.

We will begin by assuming that the attackers are Islamist militant groups operating in India, possibly with some level of outside support from Pakistan. We can also see quite clearly that this was a carefully planned, well-executed attack.

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And who are these Chabad Lubavitch people?

To make it look good and provide a little cover...

It happens on a major holiday. People are busy doing other things besides digging around on the computer. The news they get is most likely from TV. CNN? Yes. Pesky bloggers? No.

The targeted site: the Taj Mahal. Think Las Vegas.

The perpetrators are young, and they ask for British and American guests.

"They were very young, like boys really, wearing jeans and T-shirts," he said, adding that he and another hostage managed to escape on the 18th floor.
Really. And they targeted Jews. Specifically the Chabad Lubavitch headquarters.;_ylt=AnkQ4KHZrKdJNsO9K2j_F4as0NUE

But they're not very effective in killing the actual targets. Despite their bags of almond snacks, the terrorists kill mostly innocent bystanders. Confusion reigns about whether or not the high-value (ie: British, American and Jewish) hostages have been released. Keep on worrying everyone.

Naturally, Al Qaeda immediately rises to the top of the suspects list. The responsible group, however, has never been heard of before. Somehow these terrorist cells always miraculously escape intelligence and burst onto the scene completely unexpectedly. Which is weird, you know, that they're so good at avoiding surveillance but yet they suck at the nuts and bolts of carrying out an effective terrorist attack. Hmm.

But we know that these terrorists are vicious young Islamic extremists and Muslim militants. What other explanation can there possibly be?

-- blink blink blink --

Look up Chabad Lubavitch. The Chabad Lubavitch is a Jewish Supremacist group whose leaders regularly enjoy audiences with world leaders.

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Hold on there fella...Experts not certain Al Qaeda to blame

SPY agencies around the world had little warning of the terrorist attack in Mumbai, which bore some al-Qaeda hallmarks but appears unlikely to be linked to the group’s core leadership.

Westerners in India’s financial centre were targeted in the spectacular attack comprised of multiple simultaneous assaults — a signature of past al-Qaeda actions, including the September 11, 2001, attacks.

But the Indian attack was carried out by gunmen, not the suicide bombers frequently employed by al-Qaeda and its affiliates.

“We have been actively monitoring plots in Britain and abroad and there was nothing to indicate something like this was about to happen,” a British security official said.

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The Magical Al Qaeda Strikes Again

Well, it didn’t take long for Mumbai to get the Al Qaeda fingerprint. Never mind that there is no Al Qaeda, Al Qaeda must have done it. You are all familiar with Al Qaeda. Like The Scarlet Pimpernel, “they seek him here, they seek him there.” But they can’t find him anywhere.

It is a matter of great amazement to me that this Al Qaeda can be anywhere in the world, any time it wants to be and that it can strike at will under the orders of the Baron Samedi redux, Bin Laden, who routinely issues his commands from somewhere under the ground or the world beyond.

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Is Mossad hand behind Mumbai train blasts?

MOSSAD, an Israeli intelligence agency, is cited as possible organiser of Mumbai train bomb blasts. Immediately after the blast, Mossad was reportedly engaged by Sai Baba Mandir trust to provide security to the famous religious shrine.

The newspaper clarifies that till now the Mumbai authorities have not confirmed as to why the Sai Baba Trust had to employ a foreign intelligence agency for its protection or if Maharashtra Government and Central Government have cleared the hiring of Mossad intelligence agency?

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Neocon lobby group loses its "angel"

HONG KONG - The right-wing US advocacy group Freedom's Watch is reportedly shutting down as its main funder, Casino magnate Sheldon Adelson, becomes one of the high-profile casualties of the global economic downturn.

Freedom's Watch, which according to the Las Vegas Review Journal, has scheduled huge staff layoffs for the end of December, was one of the most prominent advocacy groups aligned with the Republican Party.

Adelson contributed over 30 million dollars to Freedom's Watch in 2007 and 2008, but has had to cut back on his philanthropy as his net worth – estimated at 36 billion dollars in 2007 – shrunk by 13 billion dollars.

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All hell breaking loose...

Thursday November 27, 2008 as of 2:30 p.m. PST United States of America –
At this hour, we can now divulge that the name of the cargo ship that transported Pakistan ISI paramilitary group to Mumbai was the MV Alpha. It has been reported that fishermen saw up to 20 armed men aboard the vessel. The cargo ship is jointly owned by the United States CIA and the Pakistan ISI. The vessel was heavily involved in SECRET weapons shipments to Dubai, UAE, to Hamburg, Germany and Israel. We can also divulge that George W. Bushfraud, America's alleged president, had a conversation with the President of India earlier today in which Bushfraud threatened, blackmailed and then bribed the Indian President in regards to making Al Qaeda the scapegoat and patsy for what clearly was a paramilitary attack and NOT a terrorist event.

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Citigroup collapses...banking shutdown possible


And now, here we are, nearing the end of the road with the largest banks of all endangered and with no larger bank that can swallow them up. It’s a day of reckoning that leaves me no choice but to issue this three-part warning:

  • Despite the U.S. government’s massive Citigroup bailout, it is going to be difficult for the global banking system to survive the shock to confidence for very long.
  • Even if insured depositors do not pull out their funds, uninsured institutional investors are likely to run with their money, threatening to bring the system down.
  • And alas, even if you have your money in a safe bank with full FDIC coverage, you could be adversely impacted.

How will the events unfold? That’s a massively complex question that demands an extremely cautious and thoughtful answer. That’s why, this past August, we devoted a full hour to this question in our “X” List video, naming the most likely candidates for bankruptcy. So let me review its primary conclusions and then take this discussion to the next level.

Most prominent on our August “X” List was Citigroup, America’s second largest banking conglomerate with over $2 trillion in total assets. The bank was already suffering crushing losses in mortgages. But at mid-year, it still had close to $200 billion in other mortgages on its books, denoting the strong possibility of many more to come.

In addition, Citigroup had a massive portfolio of credit cards — 185 million accounts worldwide — that we felt could be the final nail in its coffin. Even before the most recent episode of the global financial crisis, Citigroup’s losses on bad credit cards had surged by 67% from a year earlier. Worse, the number of credit cards 90 days past due was going through the roof, foreshadowing more large losses on the way. All of these weaknesses were detailed in Citigroup’s financial statements. Not detailed, however, was …

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The truth behind the Citigroup "nationalization"


What neither Paulson nor anyone in Washington is willing to reveal is the real truth behind the Citigroup bailout. By his and the Republican Bush Administration's adamant earlier refusal to take an initial resolute action to immediately nationalize the nine or so largest troubled banks, he has created the present debacle. By refusing on ideological grounds to instead reorganize the banks' assets into some form of 'good bank' and 'bad bank,' similar to what the Government of Sweden did with what it called Securum, during its banking crisis in the early 1990's, Paulson and company have created a global financial structure on the brink.

A Securum or similar temporary nationalization would have allowed the healthy banks to continue lending to the real economy so the economy could continue operating, while the State merely sat on the undervalued real estate assets of the Swedish banks for some months until the recovering economy made the assets again marketable to the private sector. Instead, Paulson and his 'crony capitalists' in Washington have turned a bad situation into a globally catastrophic one.

His apparent realization of the error of his initial refusal to nationalize came too late. When Paulson reversed policy on September 19 and presented the nine largest banks with an ultimatum to accept partial Government equity ownership, abandoning his original bizarre plan to merely buy up the toxic waste asset-backed securities of the banks with his $700 billion TARP taxpayer money, he never revealed why.

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Piracy in the Red Sea: Saudi points toward Israel

Not only do columnists and analysts openly accuse Israel of sponsoring acts of piracy that multiply off Somali waters, but they also do not hide their fears of an internationalization of security in the Red Sea, where Israel plays a decisive role.

“What is happening in the Horn of Africa is not a simple case of piracy. These acts of piracy raise various questions about the capabilities and equipment of simple outlaws who are seeking ransoms,” wrote Tuesday (November 25) Nawaf Al-Meshal Sabhan in the Saudi daily Al-Iqtissadia.

“These acts triggered statements on the internationalization of the Red Sea, in which the enemy state of Israel would be a crucial element,” he adds.

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Thai protestors brace for raids on Bangkok airports


Thailand's political crisis pits the electorally popular government, which draws its support mainly from the rural poor, against an elite in Bangkok, the army and the royal palace who fear a threat to their traditional power.

The anti-government protest movement, which calls itself the People's Alliance for Democracy (PAD), has said it would welcome a coup.

Protests by the PAD preceded the last coup, which overthrew the populist government of Thaksin Shinawatra in 2006.

Dr Giles Ungpakorn, a Thai political scientist, pointed out that the army is responsible for security at Suvarnabhumi airport and that Don Muang is located inside an air force base, yet the military did nothing to stop the PAD taking them over.

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20 things you have to believe to be a Republican today

1. Being a drug addict is a moral failing and a crime, unless you're a conservative radio host. Then it's an illness and you need our prayers for your recovery.

2. The United States should get out of the United Nations, and our highest national priority is enforcing UN resolutions against Iraq.

3. Government should relax regulation of Big Business and Big Money but crack down on individuals who use marijuana to relieve the pain of illness.

4. "Standing Tall for America" means firing your workers and moving their jobs to India.

5. A woman can't be trusted with decisions about her own body, but multinational corporations can make decisions affecting all humankind without regulation.

6. Jesus loves you, and shares your hatred of homosexuals and Hillary Clinton.

7. The best way to improve military morale is to praise the troops in speeches while slashing veterans' benefits and combat pay.

8. Group sex and drug use are degenerate sins unless you someday run for governor of California as a Republican.

9. If condoms are kept out of schools, adolescents won't have sex.

10. A good way to fight terrorism is to belittle our longtime allies, then demand their cooperation and money.

11. HMOs and insurance companies have the interest of the public at heart.

12. Providing health care to all Iraqis is sound policy. Providing health care to all Americans is socialism.

13. Global warming and tobacco's link to cancer are junk science, but creationism should be taught in schools.

14. Saddam was a good guy when Reagan armed him, a bad guy when Bush's daddy made war on him, a good guy when Cheney did business with him and a bad guy when Bush needed a "we can't find Bin Laden" diversion.

15. A president lying about an extramarital affair is an impeachable offense. A president lying to enlist support for a war crime in which thousands were killed or murdered is a solid defense policy.

16. Government should limit itself to the powers named in the Constitution, which include banning gay marriages and censoring the Internet.

17. The public has a right to know about Hillary's cattle trades, but George Bush's AWOL record, cocaine abuse, and queer exploits is none of our business.

18. You support states' rights, which means Attorney General John Ashcroft can tell states what local voter initiatives they have a right to adopt.

19. What Bill Clinton did in the 1960s is of vital national interest, but what Bush did in the 1980s is irrelevant.

20. Trade with Cuba is wrong because the country is communist; but trade with China and Vietnam is vital to a spirit of international harmony.--

original article


Evil Turkey Vulture Terrorist Goon: GWB

Let us be thankful that we will soon be delivered from this obnoxious, evil little man. Let us pray that he is not permitted to wreck any more havoc upon the face of the earth.

More pics here.

This has FALSE FLAG written all over it. Indian PM: Mumbai attackers based outside country

Indian Prime Minister Manmohan Singh says the perpetrators of coordinated attacks on the financial capital Mumbai were likely based outside the country.

Mr. Singh addressed the nation Thursday, a day after heavily armed men attacked 10 sites in the city, killing about 100 people and wounding about 300. Without specifying another nation, he said he will tell "neighbors" that the use of their territory for launching terrorist attacks will not be tolerated.

As Mr. Singh was speaking, Indian security forces were moving through two luxury hotels - The Taj Mahal Palace and the Oberoi-Trident - in an attempt to free hostages and find remaining gunmen. Gunfire and explosions were heard from the hotels, and another fire broke out at the Taj after an earlier blaze caused serious damage to the historic building.

Police were also trying to resolve a standoff at a building belonging to a Jewish group.

Wednesday night, groups of assailants with machine guns and grenades attacked several locations popular with foreigners and business people, including hotels and train stations.

Witnesses said gunmen were looking for U.S. and British citizens.

Local media report a previously unknown militant group, called the Deccan Mujahideen, has claimed responsibility. The term Mujahideen is associated with Islamist extremists.

Islamic militants have been blamed for past bombing attacks.

Among those reported killed in the attacks were Mumbai's anti-terror chief, Hemant Karkare, and at least 11 policeman.

Police say at least four gunmen have been killed and nine arrested, but it is not clear where these encounters occurred.


Wonders of Iran: Qara Kelisa

The St. Thaddeus Church best known as Qara Kelisa which literally means Black church is an ancient monument perched on a mountain ridge in the northern Iranian province of West Azarbaijan.

As one of the oldest and most notable surviving Christian monuments of Iran, Qara Kelisa carries great significance for the country's Armenian Orthodox community.

Armenians hold that Qara Kelisa is the world's first church and was constructed in 68 CE by one of the apostles of Jesus, Saint Thaddeus, who traveled to Armenia, then part of the Persian Empire, to preach the teachings of Christ.

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UN General Assembly calls for boycott of Israel

Al Manar TV

The UN General Assembly president sparked Jerusalem's ire after calling for international boycott on Israel.

Israel filed a formal complaint with the United Nations on Tuesday over statements made by UN General Assembly President, Father Miguel d'Escoto Brockmann of Nicaragua, who called for an international boycott of Israel after accusing it of being an apartheid regime.

D'Escoto went on to decry the 'Our Greatest Failure' UN: 'It has been 60 years since some 800,000 Palestinians were driven out of their homes becoming refugees and an uprooted and marginalized people,' Father D'Escoto said, adding that the fact that Palestinians still have no state represents UN's 'greatest failure'

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Jim Jones - leading choice for NSA

CHICAGO, Illinois (CNN) – Two sources close to the Obama transition team tell CNN retired Marine Gen. Jim Jones has emerged as President-elect's leading choice to become national security adviser in the White House.

The sources said Jones has been given the impression by the President-elect that the job is his if he wants it. But the officials said there are still private discussions underway and no final decision has been made.

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The Bailout For Dummies

Once upon a time a man appeared in a village and
announced to the villagers that he would buy monkeys for $10 each.

The villagers, seeing that there were many monkeys around, went out to
the forest and started catching them.

The man bought thousands at $10 and, as supply started to diminish,
the villagers stopped their effort. He next announced that he would now
buy monkeys at $20 each. This renewed the efforts of the villagers and
they started catching monkeys again.

Soon the supply diminished even further and people started going back
to their farms.

The offer increased to $25 each and the supply of monkeys became so
scarce it was an effort to even find a monkey, let alone catch it!

The man now announced that he would buy monkeys at $50 each!
However, since he had to go to the city on some business, his assistant would
buy on his behalf.

In the absence of the man, the assistant told the villagers: "Look at all these monkeys in the big cage that the man has already collected. I will sell them to you at $35 and when the man returns from the city, you can sell them to him for $50 each."

The villagers rounded up all their savings and bought all the monkeys for
700 billion dollars.

They never saw the man or his assistant again, only lots and lots of monkeys!


Another legal scandal, this time with real lawyers.

Is Hillary barred from becoming Secretary of State?

The media and blogosphere is abuzz with questions about whether Hillary Clinton is constitutionally prohibited from accepting the position of Secretary of State in Obama's administration -- based on Article I, Section 6, which states:

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Mogambo Guru: "That's why everybody is so angry with us; we are all freaking doomed!"

The recent Group of 20 (G-20) meeting in Washington, DC is where the world's 20 biggest and/or most important economies got together to change the world's economic architecture, with everybody promising to spend like maniacs right now, but to one day act honorably and adhere to some future agreement that really isn't worth the paper it will be written on.

The problem is that since 1944 the United States had promised to act responsibly and hold the value of the dollar constant, controlling the money supply, and thus preventing inflation and runaway booms like the gold standard did, so that all the other countries could take the easy way out and merely use the dollar as their "gold" reserves against which they could value their own
currencies, instead of hassling with all that metal back and forth.

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Don't you really want to help out Bank of America now?

NEW YORK: A government rescue plan has eased investors' concerns about Citigroup Inc, but mines lurking in the balance sheets of rivals including Bank of America Corp could still tempt short-sellers.

Bank of America, the No 3 US bank by assets, has loaded up on mortgages as the world's largest economy wrestles with the worst housing market since the Great Depression.

The Charlotte, North Carolina-based bank further heightened its exposure to home loans by acquiring Countrywide Financial Corp, the largest US independent mortgage lender and agreeing to buy Merrill Lynch & Co, which owns the world's largest retail brokerage.

If losses on mortgages and other debt securities mount significantly, the bank may see the ratio of equity to risk-weighted assets, known as Tier-1 capital, dwindle to alarmingly low levels.

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Robert Reich: Citigroup Scores

If you had any doubt at all about the primacy of Wall Street over Main Street; the utter lack of transparency behind the biggest government giveaway in history to financial executives, and their shareholders, directors, and creditors; and the intimate connections the lie between Administrations -- both Republican and Democratic -- and the heavyweights on Wall Street, your doubts should be laid to rest. Today it was decided the government will guarantee more than $300 billion of troubled mortgages and other assets of Citigroup under a federal plan to stabilize the lender after its stock fell 60 percent last week. The company will also will get a $20 billion cash infusion from the Treasury Department, adding to the $25 billion the bank received last month under the Troubled Asset Relief Program.

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Will UK divorce EU? Over money??

London, 25th November 2008:

On Tuesday, the Chancellor of the Exchequer, Alistair Darling, introduced something called a 'Pre-Budget Report' to the House of Commons, in which he reduced Value-Added Tax (raised from the taxpayer to pay for Britain's disastrous and counterproductive membership of the European Union Collective) from 17.5% to 15%, introduced a 45% tax rate on earnings above £150,000 per annum, distributed £60 for no apparent reason to all pensioners (including the Editor of this service) and disabled children, raised child tax credit to £1,810 (from next April), increased National Insurance payments for eight million people, and announced that the Government would be borrowing about £118 billion per annum by 2010, with the National Debt reaching 57% of national income by 2013.

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Merkel under pressure to be bold as economy sinks

Do you think it might have something to do with this guy? Hmm? Maybe just a little? - Ed.

BERLIN, Nov 25 (Reuters) - German Chancellor Angela Merkel's consensus-seeking governing style has helped hold an unwieldy coalition together, but her cautious approach to the economic crisis is beginning to raise concerns in her party and abroad.
Since turmoil shook markets and the global financial sector in mid-September, Merkel's government has favoured a wait-and-see approach over aggressive intervention -- first with German banks and now with the broader economy. [Dragging her feet at the instruction of 41? - Ed.]
She was forced to reverse course on the banks last month, agreeing belatedly to a 500 billion euro ($643.7 billion) rescue package after initially ruling out sector-wide aid.
Now she is under pressure to do more for an economy which sank into recession in the third quarter and risks posting its biggest contraction next year since World War Two.

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For more information on the background between Merkel and Bush 41, see Christopher Story.

3000 dead from cholera in Zimbabwe

Robert Mugabe, Zimbabwe's President, is trying to hide the real extent of the cholera epidemic sweeping across his nation by silencing health workers and restricting access to the huge number of death certificates that give the same cause of death.

A senior official in the health ministry told The Independent yesterday that more than 3,000 people have died from the water-borne disease in the past two weeks, 10 times the widely-reported death toll of just over 300. "But even this higher figure is still an understatement because very few bother to register the deaths of their relatives these days," said the official, who requested anonymity.

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Psychologists to Obama: Don't name Torture Apologist John Brenner as CIA Director

An open letter from 200 psychologists and allies who are urging Obama not to select John Brennan to be Director of the CIA:

Dear President-Elect Obama,

We are writing to urge you not to select John Brennan as Director of the CIA. We are psychologists and allies who have long opposed the abuses of detainees under the Bush administration. We are just concluding a successful several-year struggle to remove psychologists from their roles in aiding or abetting these abuses. It has been a distressing fact that, while the Bush administration resorted to abuse and torture of those in our custody, often psychologists have been put in positions to use their psychological expertise to guide these unconscionable practices.

We look forward to your administration as an opportunity for genuine change -- in this case for our country to take a new direction in its treatment of prisoners. We applaud your commitment to closing Guantanamo and are encouraged by your clear statement from your "60 Minutes" interview last Sunday, "America doesn't torture, and I'm gonna make sure that we don't torture." This fuels our hope for a decisive repudiation of the "dark side" -- the willingness to use or abet illegal and unethical coercive interrogation tactics that sometimes amount to torture and often constitute cruel, inhuman and degrading treatment.

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Torturing Democracy: A documentary that could put Dick Cheney out of our misery

Torturing Democracy, an expose of how and why America came to be involved in open large-scale torture of prisoners (many of whom were simply shepherds captured by mountain tribesmen and sold into captivity), is now available for viewing online.

As Scott Horton reported last month, PBS can't find a time slot for this Frontline documentary until January 21, 2009 -- the day after Bush and Cheney are scheduled to leave office.

Horton has reported more recently that this documentary could help to provide "A Ticket to The Hague for Dick Cheney". Why? Because it has the power to change the minds of influential people in denial.

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Mondoweiss: Some American Jews Reportedly Getting Real about Israel; Others Throwing Money at Image Problem

'Obama Would Put Thru a Peace Deal Tomorrow If Not for the American Jewish Community'--MJ Rosenberg

Today's conference at New York's Central Synagogue on Jews uniting against the war—six years after it matters—was remarkable for two things: the soulsearching over the Israel/Palestine issue, which represents real progress after years of denial that the occupation had anything to do with the Iraq war, and indeed denial that there is an Israel lobby and we're part of it, and secondly for fine speeches by Elizabeth Holtzman and MJ Rosenberg. I'll leave till tomorrow a report on the conferees’ sometimes-honorable efforts to come to their senses about the wicked occupation of Palestine. For tonight, the news: Elizabeth Holtzman, MJ Rosenberg.

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Denial, Inc: Boston Jewish Group Takes on Israel's Bad Image With $2.4 Million a Year, Aimed at Media and 'Influencers'

How did I ever get my little pariah fingers on this thing? A report on "Israel Advocacy," by the "Strategic Planning Subcommittee" of the Combined Jewish Philanthropies of Boston says that--are you sitting down?--Israel has a giant image problem in the U.S. Americans feel queasy about the Israel they see in the news. Even Jews are feeling ambivalent, per the focus groups. So what do we do about it? End the occupation? Oppose the settlements now? Come out for minority freedoms in Israel? No: Throw money at Israel public relations: $300,000 for campus work, $300,000 to spend on "influencers," $300,000 on media, and $500,000 for "Israel Advocacy." And that's just per year, in the Boston area. $2.4 million a year. Sorry, I gotta ask: Who has this kind of money? (Admittedly, report was in February '08.)

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Israel War Drama More Dynamic than Tabloid Reports on Brad, Angelina and Jen

US asked Israel not to start any major wars until Obama takes office

Amid several bellicose comments about the possibility of an impending Israeli strike against Iran Israeli Defense Ministry officials say they have been contacted by US officials who have asked them to refrain from launching any attacks against Iran until after President-elect Barack Obama takes office in January. Likewise, the officials reportedly have cautioned Israel not to launch its long-reported ground invasion of the Gaza Strip until after the inauguration.

No. No. That never happened.

Olmert wins US backing for Iran war

Israel's prime minister says Washington has not rejected a request by Tel Aviv to take any action it deems "necessary" against Iran.

Ehud Olmert, the outgoing premier, said Tuesday that he had extensively discussed Iran and its nuclear program with "Vice President Dick Cheney, Secretary of State Condoleezza Rice and the (US) president".

"There is a basic, deep understanding about the Iranian threat and the need to act in order to remove the threat," Olmert told reporters.

Israel insists that a nuclear Iran would pose an existential threat to Tel Aviv, claiming that Tehran has "plans to build a nuclear weapon."

Under the allegation, Israeli echelons and army brass have long argued that militarily taking out Iran's nuclear infrastructure is a legitimate option.

An earlier report by Time suggested that Washington had expressed its opposition to an Israeli military strike on Iran before President-elect Barack Obama takes office in January.

"We have been warned off," the American magazine quoted an Israeli Defense Ministry official as saying.

However, the outgoing Israeli premier dismissed the Time report.

"I don't remember that anyone in the administration, including in the last couple of days, advised me or any other of my official representatives not to take any action that we will deem necessary for the fundamental security of the state of Israel, and that includes Iran," said Olmert, who is forced to leave office following a corruption scandal.

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Bush just can't stop lying. Just can't do it.

In an interview with a Japanese television station Bush said that ‘Saddam was an enemy of the United States and a lot of people thought he had weapons of mass destruction’. What Bush neglected to mention was that a lot of people thought Saddam had WMDs only because they were deliberately lied to by Bush personally and many officers of his administration personally who told the people that Saddam had WMDs knowing full well that they had been destroyed in 1991.

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Hungry Gazans resort to animal feed as UN blasts Israel

GAZA CITY, Gaza -- Half of Gaza's bakeries have closed down and the other half have resorted to animal feed to produce bread as Israel's complete blockade of the coastal territory enters its 19th day.

U.N. Secretary-General Ban Ki Moon alarmed at the escalating humanitarian crisis called incumbent Israeli Prime Minister Ehud Olmert last week and demanded that he lift the blockade.

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Scoop: McCain and Obama camps coordinated on building staff rosters for next government

A senior Obama campaign official shared with The Washington Note that in July 2008, the McCain and Obama camps began to work secretly behind the scenes to assemble large rosters of potential personnel for the administration that only one of the candidates would lead.

Lists comprised of Democrats and Republicans were assembled, sorted into areas of policy expertise, so that the roster could be called on after the election by either the Obama or McCain transition teams.

This kind of out-of-sight coordination is rare between battling presidential camps and provides some indication that both Obama and McCain intended to draw expertise into their governments from both sides of the aisle -- or at least they wanted to appear interested in doing so if the information leaked out about the list development process.

Fascinating tidbit on cooperation behind battle lines.



Russian Analyst predicts decline and break up of US

MOSCOW, November 24 (RIA Novosti) - A leading Russian political analyst has said the economic turmoil in the United States has confirmed his long-held view that the country is heading for collapse, and will divide into separate parts.

Professor Igor Panarin said in an interview with the respected daily Izvestia published on Monday: "The dollar is not secured by anything. The country's foreign debt has grown like an avalanche, even though in the early 1980s there was no debt. By 1998, when I first made my prediction, it had exceeded $2 trillion. Now it is more than 11 trillion. This is a pyramid that can only collapse."

The paper said Panarin's dire predictions for the U.S. economy, initially made at an international conference in Australia 10 years ago at a time when the economy appeared strong, have been given more credence by this year's events.

When asked when the U.S. economy would collapse, Panarin said: "It is already collapsing. Due to the financial crisis, three of the largest and oldest five banks on Wall Street have already ceased to exist, and two are barely surviving. Their losses are the biggest in history. Now what we will see is a change in the regulatory system on a global financial scale: America will no longer be the world's financial regulator."

When asked who would replace the U.S. in regulating world markets, he said: "Two countries could assume this role: China, with its vast reserves, and Russia, which could play the role of a regulator in Eurasia."

Asked why he expected the U.S. to break up into separate parts, he said: "A whole range of reasons. Firstly, the financial problems in the U.S. will get worse. Millions of citizens there have lost their savings. Prices and unemployment are on the rise. General Motors and Ford are on the verge of collapse, and this means that whole cities will be left without work. Governors are already insistently demanding money from the federal center. Dissatisfaction is growing, and at the moment it is only being held back by the elections and the hope that Obama can work miracles. But by spring, it will be clear that there are no miracles."

He also cited the "vulnerable political setup", "lack of unified national laws", and "divisions among the elite, which have become clear in these crisis conditions."

He predicted that the U.S. will break up into six parts - the Pacific coast, with its growing Chinese population; the South, with its Hispanics; Texas, where independence movements are on the rise; the Atlantic coast, with its distinct and separate mentality; five of the poorer central states with their large Native American populations; and the northern states, where the influence from Canada is strong.

He even suggested that "we could claim Alaska - it was only granted on lease, after all."

On the fate of the U.S. dollar, he said: "In 2006 a secret agreement was reached between Canada, Mexico and the U.S. on a common Amero currency as a new monetary unit. This could signal preparations to replace the dollar. The one-hundred dollar bills that have flooded the world could be simply frozen. Under the pretext, let's say, that terrorists are forging them and they need to be checked."

When asked how Russia should react to his vision of the future, Panarin said: "Develop the ruble as a regional currency. Create a fully functioning oil exchange, trading in rubles... We must break the strings tying us to the financial Titanic, which in my view will soon sink."

Panarin, 60, is a professor at the Diplomatic Academy of the Russian Ministry of Foreign Affairs, and has authored several books on information warfare.

Vlad gives advice to Barack: Drop it

RUSSIAN Prime Minister Vladimir Putin has urged US President-elect Barack Obama to drop the planned US missile shield in Eastern Europe, warning of an "adequate response" from Moscow.

"This project is aimed against the strategic potential of Russia. And we can only give it an adequate response,'' Mr Putin said on Monday at a conference on human rights law in Saint Petersburg.

"If there are not missile defence sites in Poland and the Czech Republic - there will be no retaliatory measures either.''

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Realignments in Progress

Brussels to recognize 'European aspirations' of post-Soviet states

The European Commission is to propose pulling the EU`s six post-Soviet neighbours closer to the West by recognising their "European aspirations" and creating a new "European Economic Area." But a draft communique indicates that EU-Russia relations have preferential status, EUObserver reported.

"The conflict in Georgia in August 2008 and its broader repercussions have resulted in increased awareness of the vulnerability of Eastern partners," the draft commission communication on the Eastern Partnership (EP) - seen by EUobserver - says. "There is a sense of urgency among member states as to the need to enhance relations with our Eastern neighbours to support them in drawing closer to the EU."

The new EU policy - first floated by Poland and Sweden last year - proposes signing "Association Agreements" with Belarus, Moldova, Ukraine, Georgia, Armenia and Azerbaijan in the next few years and to "acknowledge the European identity and aspirations of these countries."

Reach peace deal with Syria, attack Iran: Israeli Army

JERUSALEM: Israel's defence establishment in a recommendation paper to be presented to the Cabinet has asked it to make contingency plans to attack Iran, reach a peace agreement with Syria and prevent polls in the Palestinian areas even if Tel Aviv has to confront with the US.

The paper will be presented to the Cabinet next month as part of the National Security Council's annual situation assessment, daily 'Ha'aretz' reported on Sunday.

The paper warns that Israel may find itself facing a nuclear Iran virtually alone in 2009 following a rapprochement between Washington, Tehran and the Arab world that would also undermine the Jewish state’s military superiority.

How to deal with pirates (American, not Somalian)

The Wall Street Journal offered an article yesterday on How to Fight pirates. It reported how, in the late 18th century and early 19th Century, Moroccan pirates-- Barbary pirates-- were attacking American ships and kidnapping their crews, holding the crews and the goods on board for ransom. In 1785, the Pasha of Morocco demanded a million bucks, ten percent of the fledgling USA's national budget, for protection. Samuel Adams and Thomas Jefferson had no alternative. For at least a decade, for lack of a navy and support from other nations to fight back, the US paid those ransoms.

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Pervasive corruption fuels deep anger in Afghanistan

Kakocracy...rule by criminals, or the worst. - Ed.

KABUL, Afghanistan — Ramzan Bashardost drives a beat-up black 1991 Suzuki with a cracked windshield and often sleeps in a tent—habits hardly befitting a respected member of parliament.

His relatives think he is crazy. But Bashardost, 46, now running for president, said he is making a point against persistent corruption in the Afghan government. He said he has turned down free land and fancy vehicles offered to officials. He even rejected a free couch.

"In the Afghan administration now, money is the law," said Bashardost, the former planning minister. "When you have money here, you can do anything. Afghanistan is the only country in the world where corruption is legal."

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The Mexican Narco-Revolution

The drug business funds the black-ops budget. As long as we allow a black-ops budget, we will have a robust, intelligence-run drug business. And people will die. - Ed.

My 2006 article about a possible coming revolution in Mexico was both correct and incorrect. At that time, I focused on the highly emotional and heavily contested presidential election. I thought the forces of the left might launch a national revolution, but they did not, seemingly content to work within the system, at least for now. Nevertheless, an ultra-violent, albeit somewhat quiet, heavily armed insurgency is already well under way. The key players are the drug cartels and the rightist Calderon government. On one front, the cartels are warring among themselves for dominance in the lucrative multi-billion dollar drug trade, made possible by ridiculously inappropriate and ineffective U.S. laws. On the other front is the war against the Mexican government, the cartels hoping to dominate, or at least to intimidate and coerce the system to make their work even easier. This is just what has happened in Colombia and other drug-producing countries, and is resulting in what many are calling the Colombianization of Mexico.

What is happening is largely ignored by the American “mainline” media. Since I live in South Texas, I occasionally look at Spanish language newspapers. I wish I could relay some good commentary, but other than matter-of-fact reports on the violence, little is said. The American press has chosen by and large to ignore the issue as it might impinge on tourism, oil imports, the lucrative outsourcing of our industrial jobs, etc., but the Mexican media has a better reason for avoiding it. Some of the main targets for narco-assassins are journalists. Of course, the stories that doomed them most often involved clear and direct exposés of criminal activity and widespread public corruption. Let’s pause a moment to honor these brave reporters and commentators. How many writers, including myself, would be willing to risk death to make a statement? Not only that, some of them continued even after the deaths of their colleagues. Of course, the narco-terrorists eventually had their way.

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US intelligence 'kept files on Tony Blair's private life' claims ex-US navy operator

One would assume there are files on everybody of any importance whatsoever. That's how they keep them in line. One wrong move and you're go down faster than Eliot Spitzer's 'date.' - Ed.

US intelligence officials kept a file on former prime minister Tony Blair's "private life", a former US navy communications operator claimed today.

David Murfee Faulk, who worked at a listening post in Fort Gordon, Georgia, told he saw the file on Blair in 2006.

But he refused to provide details of what the file, held in an intelligence database called Anchory, contained, other than to say it was a file on his "private life" and included information of a personal nature.

Faulk also said he heard "pillow talk" phone calls of Iraq's first interim president, Ghazi al-Yawer, another key US ally, when he worked as a US Army Arab linguist assigned to a US National Security Agency (NSA) facility at Fort Gordon, Georgia, between 2003 and 2007.

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Isn't that the truth.

Deep Thought

I'm so old I can remember when spending $8 billion to give more health care to kids would spook the bond markets so badly that it just couldn't be done.

Catherine Austin Fitts comments on G20 Statement

The Editor of Expresso in Portugal wanted my take on the recent G-20 communique. Here is my “translation” of the official statement:

1. Now that the growth of debt and derivatives bubbles has stalled, we are committed to using governmental-central bank mechanisms to cover the positions of any of the large private financial institutions whose profits are at risk due to their management of these bubbles and who can use this opportunity to squeeze and acquire smaller rivals at low cost.

2. Our commitment to use derivatives and market interventions to shift investment from the real economy and commodities into a paper economy is firm. We will continue to use centralized governmental mechanisms to subsidize and manage this process.

3. All of the organizations and players who reaped a fortune engineering the debt and derivatives bubbles will be allowed to keep their winnings.

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YouTube: Bush and Paulson

What the hell is up with Henry Paulson? You know, if there ever was a person who actually behaved like a reptile, it has to be Henry Paulson. Look at the way his head darts around. Or is he afraid of getting shot (again) for being such a dick (see next entry)? Do the clicking cameras make him nervous, or what? Could he have a dumber expression on his face? - Ed.

Dickipedia - Henry Paulson

Henry Merritt "Hank" Paulson Jr. (born March 28, 1946) is the current US Treasury Secretary, a past Chairman and CEO of Goldman Sachs, a future scapegoat for America’s collapse into a third world barter economy, and a dick.

Paulson’s greatest achievement in dickdom thus far is that after amassing a net worth of over $700 million while running an investment bank, he is now in charge of reforming the very system that made him so cartoonishly wealthy in the first place. It is very much like if Larry Flynt were charged with reforming the pornography industry or Carlos Mencia were hired to revamp the joke stealing industry.

Read Henry Paulson's full entry at Dickipedia

Pesticide exposure boosts Parkinson's risk by 60%

Be obsessive about your lawn....get Parkinson's. - Ed.

(NaturalNews) A new study has provided one of the strongest links yet between pesticide use and Parkinson's disease.

A team of researchers from Duke University, Miami University and the Udall Parkinson's Disease Research Center of Excellence has found that people who were exposed to pesticides were substantially more likely to develop Parkinson's disease than closely related people who did not use so many pesticides, according to a study published in the journal BMC Neurology.

Parkinson's disease is a degenerative neurological condition resulting from the damage or death of the brain cells that regulate muscular movement. When cells become unable to produce the neurotransmitter dopamine, a wide variety of problems, such as slurred speech, stiffness, tremors, and problems with balance and movement, occur. Approximately one million people in the United States - one in 300 - suffer from the disease. In the United Kingdom, approximately one in 500 people, or 120,000 people, are affected.

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“The Spectacle Lurches On”

By John Steppling

I’ve been trying to evaluate the left regards both Obama, and as it exists in the US today. I’ve read a lot of comments from various progressive blogs and web pages. They seem fairly representative of what the *far* left is saying. What it always says. It’s a profoundly cynical group, but also one stuck in a time warp. As early as the 1920s certain Marxists were complaining that European socialists were trying to initiate the Bolshevik model for revolution, and it wouldn’t work because conditions were different (i.e. Western Europe wasn’t feudal, the party wasn’t illegal, and there wasn’t a majority rural population, de centralized power, etc). They are also expressing something pretty obvious, and it relates to the hegemonic nature of today’s power structure. That said, there is something about the very accusation of *cynicism* against the left which tends toward a neutralizing effect. The vast marketing apparatus that is US politics these days makes all critique digestible and rendered into its opposite if need be.

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conspiracy vs. Conspiracy in American History

By Morris Berman

The notion that the parliamentary democracy of the industrial nations is a sham, and that the real power lies not in the hands of the people (or their elected representatives) but in the hands of a small, ruling elite is a view most closely associated with Karl Marx. This is one meaning of the word “conspiracy”: the ruling class knows what its interests are, and it acts to protect them. In this sense of the term, conspiracy is equivalent to elite theory, because the implication is that the ruling class acts with a unified consciousness. Indeed, Marx argued that the emergence of conflicts within the ranks of the elite was a sign that the system was ripe for revolutionary overthrow.

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Why Bush can't allow Habeas Corpus, and why we need to leave Afghanistan

The whole rationale for our war in Afghanistan probably would be exposed to the world as the farce that it is if the Bush administration allowed its "War on Terror" prisoners to use the writ of habeas corpus to challenge their detentions. That appears to be a major reason, if not the major reason, why the Bush administration has for several years fought tooth and nail to deny its prisoners the habeas corpus rights that are guaranteed under our Constitution. And it is also probably a major reason why whenever our courts have over-ruled the Bush administration in specific cases, Bush has released the respective prisoners rather than allow them a fair and open trial.

The whole rationale for our Afghanistan war is based on the presumed refusal of the Taliban to turn over Osama bin Laden, whom George Bush claimed to have perpetrated the 9/11 attacks on our country, to U.S. custody. But there are enough holes in that story to drive a truck through.

The ultimate rationale behind the indefinite imprisonment without charges of many or most of our "War on Terror" prisoners is rooted in the claim that they fought for the Taliban or al Qaeda against our country (when we invaded it). Since we accuse the Taliban of harboring bin Laden, whom we claim perpetrated the 9/11 attacks, and since we also claim that the Taliban knew of bin Laden's role in the 9/11 attacks and yet refused to hand him over to us, therefore the Taliban is guilty of terrorism, and so is anyone who fought for the Taliban when U.S. troops invaded their country.

Since that scenario provides the rationale for our imprisonment of the so-called "terrorists", and would therefore provide the basis for any formal charges that were to be brought against them in a fair and open trial, and since the underlying scenario can be so easily disproven, obviously the defendants' lawyers would attempt to expose that scenario for the fraud that it is if they were given the chance to do so in a fair and open trial. And then the whole house of cards that we call the "War on Terror" would come tumbling down. And then of course, quite a few high level officials would be vulnerable to war crimes charges.

That's it in a nutshell. Let's look at some of the evidence:

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Israel to ease Gaza siege under international pressure

Under mounting international pressure over the blockade of the Gaza Strip, Israel has decided to allow in fuel, food and medical supplies.

Israeli Defense Minister Ehud Barak decided to open the crossings to the Gaza Strip and allow humanitarian supplies, including medicine, food and fuel, throughout the day, the ministry said in a statement on Monday.

The development came after the UN, political figures and international rights groups expressed their serious concerns over the humanitarian crisis in the region, calling on Israel to lift the blockade.

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Vigilant Shield '09: A cover for illegal domestic ops?

On November 17, U.S. Northern Command (NORTHCOM) and the North American Aerospace Defense Command (NORAD) concluded Vigilant Shield 09 (VS09), described in a press release as a training exercise focused on "homeland defense and civil support."

Launched by President Bush in 2002 in the aftermath of the September 11, 2001 terrorist attacks, NORTHCOM has been mired in controversy since its creation. Among its more dubious accomplishments were illegal domestic spying operations in conjunction with the Pentagon's shadowy Counter Intelligence Field Activity unit (CIFA) that targeted antiwar activists.

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US rescues Citi with $20B capital, guarantees

* Citigroup to issue $27 bln preferred stock, cap dividend
* Government to share in losses, Pandit to stay
* S&P 500 futures rise (Adds CFO comments, details from Citigroup, paragraphs 2-5, 8, 10-16, 19-20)
By Dan Wilchins and Jonathan Stempel
NEW YORK, Nov 24 (Reuters) - The U.S. government has bailed out Citigroup Inc, agreeing to shoulder most of the potential losses on $306 billion of high risk assets and inject $20 billion of new capital, in its biggest rescue of a bank yet.
Citigroup's rescue marks the latest government effort to contain a widening financial meltdown that has caused the disappearance or bankruptcies of companies including Bear Stearns Cos, Lehman Brothers Holdings Inc and Washington Mutual Inc.

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The Two Trillion Dollar Black Hole

Outcome 3 is the most fascinating area of departure from the classic Ponzi scheme. Legal authorities have, indeed, examined the books of these firms, except for one area we’ll discuss later. They found worthless assets along with debts hidden off the balance sheet instead of real depositor funds. Instead of arresting the perpetrators and shutting down the schemes, Federal authorities have developed their own new schemes and pumped over $2 trillion of taxpayer money into propping up the firms while leaving the schemers in place. Equally astonishing, Congress has not held any meaningful investigations. This has left many Wall Street veterans wondering if the problem isn’t that the firms are “too big to fail” but rather “too Ponzi-like to prosecute.” Imagine the worldwide reaction to learning that all the claptrap coming from U.S. think-tanks and ivy-league academics over the last decade about efficient market theory and deregulation and trickle down was merely a ruse for a Ponzi scheme now being propped up by a U.S. Treasury Department bailout and loans from our central bank, the Federal Reserve.

h/t Perception Managers

22 US banks collapsed this year

NEW YORK: As many as 22 American banks have collapsed this year so far, even as the banking giant Citigroup, led by Indian-American, Vikram Pandit, struggled this

week to save itself from becoming number 23 in this fast growing long list.

On Friday, three US banks collapsed with two of them being in California and the third one in Georgia.

The two California banks which were shut down Friday are Downey Savings and Loan of Newport Beach and PFF Bank and Trust of Pomona. The 12.78 billion Downey, The Wall Street Journal, said is the third largest bank to fall this year. Topping the list is $307 billion Washington Mutual.

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GM to invest $1B in Brazil, money to come from US Bailout

General Motors (GM) plans to invest $1 billion in Brazil to avoid the kind of problems the U.S. automaker is facing in its home market, said the beleaguered car maker.

According to the president of GM Brazil-Mercosur, Jaime Ardila, the funding will come from the package of financial aid that the manufacturer will receive from the U.S. government and will be used to "complete the renovation of the line of products up to 2012."

"It wouldn't be logical to withdraw the investment from where we're growing, and our goal is to protect investments in emerging markets," he said in a statement published by the business daily Gazeta Mercantil.

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What is up with the London 2012 Olympics logo?

Photo caption: Olympic icon: Boris Johnson and his hair.

The controversial 2012 Olympics logo ran into more trouble today as it emerged that a video promoting it had triggered migraines and epileptic fits.

The IOC is also now set to investigate the logo and politicians say it's childish and looks 'like Boris Johnson's hair'.

Epilepsy Action said it had received reports of 22 people having fits while watching the video, with reports of others vomiting and having migraines.

The charity said a seizure could have a "major impact" on epilepsy sufferers' lives, potentially leading to them losing their driving licences.

The promotional video was a "catastrophic mistake", according to London Mayor Ken Livingstone.

The latest catastrophe comes on the day it emerged that London Olympics chiefs will be quizzed on the fiasco surrounding the logo during a visit by inspectors from the International Olympic Committee next week.

It's still not too late to send us your alternative design for the 2012 Olympics logo. Simply email it to us using the link below and, in the spirit of the Games, we'll award gold, silver and bronze medals to our favourites.

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Also, does that logo really say ZION??

Whether or not the Khazar cryptocrats plan a special move in 2012, the year of the next Olympic games, they certainly couldn’t resist parading their criminal hegemony in the odd-looking Olympic logo unveiled on 4 June. For £400,000 they got exactly what they wanted from Jewish brand-consultancy firm Wolff Olins: a deniable emblem of their shibboleth “ZION” masquerading as the date 2012. To do this they used a distracting, grafitti-like typeface in which “2” can be read as either “Z” or “N”. They then went on to arrange the characters in a square so that they can be read either horizontally ("2012") or vertically ("ZION"). Those tempted to reject this interpretation should ask themselves whether a more rational explanation can be found for an otherwise inexplicably feeble logo.

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Power Down

From: Jason Miller - Thomas Paine's Corner

I published Adam Engel's latest broadside of Western civilization/capitalism.

We really make me sick.

I used to think we were all a bunch of clowns.

Where did I get the arrogance, the audacity, the sheer chutzpah to believe we were equal to clowns, who after all, are entertainers, in their own way, make-up artists, acrobats, performers who get paid at the end of the night, scrub off their grease-paint, twist off their rubber noses, and sleep well, while we, we are merely children in the audience bedazzled and beguiled by the clowns while outside the big top, under the benevolent watch of the Strong Man, The Knife-Thrower and Lobster Boy (”support our freaks”) our parents are signing away the family farm, our inheritance, and that of our children, to the Ringmaster, who orders the Strongman to bugger Dad while Lobster Boy and Knife-Thrower do unspeakable things to Mom, for after all, they got paid for the gig, gotta make ‘em earn their freak. Otherwise, it just wouldn’t be natural.

That we dare flatter ourselves with such attributes as clown, buffoon, jester, jackanapes, lummox, oaf…another testimony to our unmitigated gall.

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Medvedev's Venezuela, Cuba trips set to rile US

MOSCOW (Reuters) - Russian President Dmitry Medvedev's visits to Venezuela and Cuba during a week-long trip to Latin America look set to irk Washington, highlighting a foreign policy challenge facing President-elect Barack Obama.

His trip to Venezuela, a key buyer of Russian arms, coincides with the two countries' first joint naval exercise in the Caribbean -- traditionally viewed by the United States as its backyard.

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Hearings on Cheney, others halted

Willacy County District Attorney Juan Angel Guerra brought a hearing to a halt on Friday when he asked that Judge J. Manuel Bañales recuse himself from presiding over the arraignments of several high-profile public officials.

Guerra filed a motion that Bañales recuse himself from the hearings, because he questioned how the judge handled the indictments and whether the state would receive a fair trial. The motion remained pending.

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The eco-machine that can magic water out of thin air

Water, Water, everywhere; nor any drop to drink. The plight of the Ancient Mariner is about to be alleviated thanks to a firm of eco-inventors from Canada who claim to have found the solution to the world's worsening water shortages by drawing the liquid of life from an unlimited and untapped source - the air.

The company, Element Four, has developed a machine that it hopes will become the first mainstream household appliance to have been invented since the microwave. Their creation, the WaterMill, uses the electricity of about three light bulbs to condense moisture from the air and purify it into clean drinking water.

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How Big Is Bad?

From: Jason Miller - Thomas Paine's Corner

I ran Ed Duvin's critique of the HSUS and how it is actually affecting the AR movement adversely.....

WHEN ASKED TO WRITE ON THE HUMANE SOCIETY OF THE U.S. (HSUS), I initially declined. Although an inveterate critic of large institutions, my principal interest is the macro dynamics of social change—not specific organizations. Moreover, I formerly directed an organization affiliated with HSUS and have had a long association with their leadership. This raised ethical issues, requiring the separation of information acquired in trust from that which is a matter of public record. After considerable deliberation, I concluded that the highest personal and journalistic standards could be met.

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legal mumbo jumbo

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