Running parallel over the last few months have been the endeavors of two disparate individuals, Fox News host Glenn Beck and WikiLeaks founder Julian Assange, the former espousing a pleasant faux reality for Americans and the latter confronting them with unpleasant truths. Not surprisingly, Beck appears to have had the better of the exchange with Americans rallying to the polls to elect a right-wing Republican majority in the House of Representatives and Assange coming under a withering assault for supposedly endangering U.S. security, as Lawrence Davidson argues in this essay:
France has reportedly passed a law to use the assets in its €36 billion national reserve pension fund to pay off welfare system debts, as Ireland tapped its own reserve pension fund to supplement an EU-IMF bailout. The assets of the French pension fund, the Fonds de réserve pour les retraites, have been moved into the agency in charge of refinancing the country’s social debt, Cades, Financial News reported.
Aid and human rights groups says there has been little improvement since Israel announced blockade would be "eased". For two-year old Nasma Abu Lasma, the Israeli announcement in June that the blockade on the Gaza Strip would be relaxed offered a ray of hope. Nasma was suffering from leukaemia, and the movement restrictions on Palestinians in Gaza that went along with the blockade meant that she had little hope of receiving the necessary permit to leave the beleaguered coastal strip for potentially life-saving treatment.
NEW YORK (CNNMoney.com) -- Less than a month after the Kardashian Kard made its controversial debut, the reality show sisters terminated the glitzy prepaid debit card. The decision to dump the card comes after Connecticut Attorney General Richard Blumenthal wrote a letter Friday to the card's issuer, University National Bank, questioning the legality of the card's "pernicious and predatory fees."
The private central bank of the United States, the Federal Reserve, has begun purchasing $600 billion of long-term U.S. Treasury Bonds, essentially subsidising the federal deficit for the year. Many economists say the significance of this new role for the Federal Reserve cannot be overstated, especially because the agency is literally creating money at the stroke of a keyboard.
On Thanksgiving eve the English-language China Daily and People’s Daily Online reported that Russia and China have concluded an agreement to abandon the use of the US dollar in their bilateral trade and to use their own currencies in its place. The Russians and Chinese said that they had taken this step in order to insulate their economies from the risks that have undermined their confidence in the US dollar as world reserve currency.
WikileaksDoc: U.S. Tried to Stop Accountability Abroad We’re still reviewing the most recent mass of Wikileaks documents, but already they reveal improper government conduct: Bush administration officials pressured Germany not to prosecute CIA officers responsible for the kidnapping, extraordinary rendition and torture of German national Khaled El-Masri, an ACLU client. Mr. El-Masri was kidnapped from Macedonia in 2003, taken to a secret CIA-run prison in Afghanistan where he was held for several months and tortured before being released on a hillside in Albania.
Dr. Russell Blaylock M.D. is a retired neurosurgeon and author whose trailblazing research has tirelessly documented the fact that there is an epidemic of neurological disorders in the western world which are directly connected to toxins in our environment, and how this relates to the larger global eugenics program behind population reduction. In this fascinating interview, Blaylock reveals how depopulation programs forged by the Rockefeller foundation in association with the Nazis were the basis of modern day incarnations of eugenics like fluoride poisoning and vaccinations.
Both Google and its subsidiary company You Tube have banned Alex Jones and his websites, as attempts to curtail free speech widen.
Search for Alex Jones on Google.
Search for Alex Jones on You Tube.
While most countries struggle economically, Brazil, Russia, India and China are booming. Although Bric started life as just a clever acronym dreamt up by a Goldman Sachs economist, it might be time to start getting accustomed to hearing about Bric in its fullest political expression. According to some, these four countries could - in around two decades - become the dominant powers in the world.
Pockets of poverty, like the sores of some malignant disease, are spreading across America, as its states and cities go broke and bankrupt. "Camden, New Jersey, stands as a warning of what huge pockets of America could turn into," The Nation magazine reports in its Nov. 22nd issue. In fact, it has already happened, it is happening all over, and there is no signal on the horizon that poverty and blight will not continue to spread. It is not that Americans are lazy and shiftless; rather, they are reeling from betrayal---for they have been betrayed both by their employers, who have shown not an ounce of loyalty to their work forces, and they have been betrayed by their Federal government, which has lied the nation into costly criminal wars.
North Korea places surface-to-surface missiles on launch pads as US and South Korea kick off joint military exercises. The United States and South Korea have begun joint military exercises in waters west of the Korean Peninsula. The exercises, which began on Sunday, came less than a week after North Korean shells rained down on the tiny island near the disputed maritime boundary and killed four people.
It is said that Spain is the country with the most land devoted to growing grapes. Although it is unclear when wines were first cultivated in Spain or who brought wine making techniques, it is likely that the Phoenicians were there about 3,000 years ago. It is believed that the first vines were grown on the southwest coast of Andalusia which would make that the starting point for vineyards. Initially the Phoenicians, a trading culture, founded a port they named Gadir (Cadiz) and then later moved inland and founded the city of Zera (Jerez.) Here they planted vines and the warm climate gave the grapes sweetness that allowed them to travel well. Travel they did, as wine became the most frequently traded product in North America and in the Mediterranean.
SCANNERS AREN'T LEGAL, NOT IN AMERICA ANYWAY, AIRPORT SCANNERS ARE, IN EVERY WAY, RACKETEERING Let’s begin with one fact. We are using expensive, dangerous and illegal scanners in our airports for one reason. A year ago, single “terrorist,” really a moronic dupe with a defective bomb in his crotch was escorted onto a plane for Detroit, no search, no passport, not even a ticket, placed on a plane by an airport security officer who is a former IDF “commando.”
Here is MY deficit-reduction plan. This plan does not reflect the views of anyone but myself -- and maybe half the population. Unlike deficit plans from the "serious people" in DC, this one doesn't annihilate the poor and gut Social Security and the middle class while passing even more of the benefits of our society up to a few at the top. 1) Restore pre-Reagan top tax rates. We didn't have massive deficits until we reduced the top tax rates.
Since there are now three conflicts in the greater Middle East; Afghanistan, Iraq, Israel/"Palestine" and maybe another Lebanese war in the offing, it might be a good idea to take a look at the cost of war.
For TV entertainment, we normally watch video tapes of Japanese TV sent to us by my wife's relatives living in Japan. We were just notified today from the relative in Japan who sends the box with the tapes that he couldn't send the box to the USA, but the Japanese postal clerk didn't know why when asked for the reason.
The World is at a dangerous crossroads. The US is seeking a pretext to wage war on North Korea. North Korea is said to constitute a threat to Global Security.
This week marks the 60th anniversary of China’s entry in force into the Korean War. The attack carried out by some 300,000 Chinese troops resulted in one of the most stunning defeats suffered by the US military in its entire history. What followed was a protracted and bloody stalemate that ended only with the armistice declared in July 1953. The war had claimed the lives of more than four million people, the vast majority of them Korean civilians.
More than 100,000 Irish citizens took to the streets of Dublin today to protest against the international bailout and four years of austerity. Thousands of demonstrators march through Dublin to protest against budget cuts and an EU-IMF bailout. Despite overnight snow storms and freezing temperatures, huge crowds have gathered in O'Connell Street to demonstrate against the cuts aimed at driving down Ireland's colossal national debt.
Prolonged severe drought raises concerns about fate of world's biggest rainforest. Months of drought in Brazil's Amazon region is raising serious concerns about the future of the world's biggest rainforest. The prolonged dry spell has left the Rio Negro river at its lowest level in more than a century.
Property development threatens to disrupt efforts to protect marine reserves in the country. Mexico will be playing host to the UN Climate Change Conference in Cancun beginning on Monday. The country meanwhile is wrestling with its own environmental challenges.
Is the French government resorting to increasingly repressive measures to silence the press? Sarkozy to journalists: 'Paedophile friends, see you tomorrow!' France's Nicolas Sarkozy is not known for his self-control, but calling journalists paedophiles is, arguably, a new low. The comments, reported by the magazine L'Express on Monday, were an apparent attempt at irony by the French president, in response to a journalist who had asked about his role in allegedly overseeing illegal kickbacks in the Karachi affair. He was criticising the media's use of secret sources and what he sees as a willingness to report on political scandals without proper verification:
US and South Korean military drills are pushing the peninsula to the brink of war, says North Korea's state news agency. North Korea has warned that planned joint US and South Korean military drills are pushing the peninsula to the brink of war as a US military commander headed to an island devastated this week by a North Korean artillery barrage.
President Obama is engaging in a relentless assault on our freedoms and constitutional government. The growing backlash against the new Transportation Security Administration (TSA) airport screening procedures signifies that Americans finally may have had enough.
We speak with Derrick Jensen, who has been called the poet-philosopher of the ecological movement. He has written some 15 books critiquing contemporary society and the destruction of the environment. His many books include A Language Older than Words, Endgame, What We Left Behind, Resistance against Empire, and Deep Green Resistance. "I think a lot of us are increasingly recognizing that the dominant culture is killing the planet," Jensen says. "I think it’s very important for us to start to build a culture of resistance, because what we’re doing isn’t working, clearly."
Nine years, 50 days. We've now been stationed in Afghanistan for just as long as the Soviets in the '70s and '80s. But where Russia eventually recognized the futility of the situation, the US is fresh off an injection of 30,000 troops and a projected withdrawal date of 2018.
County Executive Steve Levy wants to force stores to shut down between noon and 5 p.m. on Thanksgiving Day and has proposed a law forcing them to close or face penalties of up to $1,500. I think he's right. There are no days off any more, and it's making us sick as a society. I don't mean physically ill (though there's likely a connection there, too); I'm talking about every other kind of wellness: spiritual, emotional and - yes - even moral health and well-being.
For the last several days, I have been trying to locate what would appear to be the appropriate and necessary level of angst and fury over the issue of heavy-handed TSA searches at American airports. I say "appropriate and necessary" because, well, all the noise surrounding the matter seems to suggest I have no alternative other than outrage, and if I fail to react that way, I am some sort of dupe, a fool who doesn't understand the Constitutional issues at hand or the dangers represented by what has been described as a glaring governmental over-reach.
BEIJING – This weekend's arrival of a U.S. aircraft carrier in the Yellow Sea poses a dilemma for Beijing: Should it protest angrily and aggravate ties with Washington, or quietly accept the presence of a key symbol of American military pre-eminence off Chinese shores?
Make no mistake about it: America’s so-called legal “system” is hopelessly and intransigently corrupt. In fact, if this “system” were beholden to its own laws, it would undoubtedly be guilty of fraud, extortion, obstruction of justice and conspiracy.
Pyongyang says Seoul's military exercises with US are a recipe for war, as artillery fire is heard in the tense border. Days after it carried out its heaviest bombardment since 1953, North Korea on Friday has warned that South Korea's military exercises with the US bring the two neighbours to the "brink of war". The stark warning comes as sounds of distant artillery fire were heard on Friday from within North Korea, and a Reuters witness said he saw smoke rising from inland North Korea.
"I didn't understand quite how bad things had become in this country until I saw armed cops being deployed against schoolchildren in the middle of Whitehall."
When most of us think about "lame duck" Congressional sessions we think of a "do-nothing" government. However, this so-called lame duck session appears to be a time where legislation that has the most restrictions to individual rights is being rammed through. It seems the members of government who have been recently voted out of office are vying for corporate jobs by pushing such legislation as the Food Safety Modernization Act and the Combating Online Infringement and Counterfeits Act which are now on the fast track to becoming law. Both of these laws reek of tyranny for the citizens and a means of corporate consolidation for the big boys.
Members of "The Jewish Defense League" attacked earlier this week a photo exhibition of the German photojournalist Kai Wiedenhöfer "depicting the massacres in the Gaza strip during the Israeli Operation Cast Lead" offensive. The exhibit is being held at the the Modern Art Museum of Paris. The employees of the museum explained that a group of people equipped with masks and motorbike helmets tried to reach the gallery to sabotage the exhibition, when museum security blocked their access. However, the extremists also attempted to vandalize many works displayed alongside the Museum, including paintings by Pablo Picasso, Henri Matisse, Amedeo Modigliani and Marc Chagall, witnesses reported...
While many U.S. residents prepare for their annual Thanksgiving feast Thursday, one in six are at risk of hunger - including a quarter of all children in the country. Globally, 925 million people, or a little less than 15 percent of the world population, is undernourished. Ironically, Washington's efforts to alleviate hunger abroad may be more successful than at home, analysts say.
Israeli police were accused of "flagrant violations" of the law Thursday over their harsh and at times violent treatment of Palestinian children suspected of stone-throwing in east Jerusalem.
In dispatching the aircraft carrier USS George Washington to the Korean Peninsula on Wednesday, the Obama administration said it was putting on a show of U.S. support for South Korea. South Korea was attacked Tuesday by a deadly North Korean artillery barrage, days after the North revealed what could be a new nuclear weapons program, and President Obama said he wanted to stand "shoulder to shoulder" with an American ally.
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