by Brian McAfee
Reports indicate that the hardships from Pakistan’s earlier monsoon floods have been exacerbated by the onslaught of winter. The floods impacted 20 million of Pakistan’s population of just over 180 million people. As the temperature dips, hundreds of thousands of displaced children and adults are susceptible to pneumonia and other cold related diseases. According to Director of the National Institute of Child Health (Pakistan), Professor Jamal Raza states that the flood victims becoming ill from cold related causes, particularly children, could almost double from the current number.
By Alan Hart
After his appointment as Chairman of the United States House Committee on Foreign Affairs, California’s representative Howard Berman told The Forward, “Even before I was a Democrat, I was a Zionist.” This is the man, one of the Zionist lobby’s most influential stooges in Congress, who introduced House Resolution 1734 which gives President Obama his new orders.
Thoroughly disingenuous, the resolution, which was drafted by AIPAC and in my view is an indication of panic on its part, was approved unanimously by the House of Representatives on 15 December. It:
U.S. stock markets rallied to recent highs on news that the U.S. Federal Reserve planned to pump up to $900 billion more cash into the economy. Financial markets reflect today’s appraisal of tomorrow’s cash flows. More cash means more flows.
Fed Chairman Ben Bernanke conceded early on in 2008 that the Fed was “printing money.” That candor proved unsettling. This latest cash infusion instead is “quantitative easing” or “QE2.”
We're on our own. It's official. The House of Representatives completed what the Senate began (which seems like the wrong way around). The giveaway to millionaires, also known as the Obama-Republican tax bill, is now law. The grand total is now $900 billion in tax cuts, a large sum of which comes from the Social Security Trust Fund. Shameless politicians have created an open wound in the Social Security that they say is "temporary." They lie so consistently, there is no reason to believe that the payroll tax will ever be restored; certainly not in the next two legislative seasons with a super majority of Republicans in the House of Representatives. (Image)
There was no real debate, hence no public awareness, of the crime committed. But when the word gets out over the next few months, there should be an awful reckoning when the people wake up to this theft. Those who voted for this proposal didn't just touch the third rail of American politics, they sat down on it.
There were some winners out of all this:
"A bonanza of new and extended tax benefits could make it as easy as ever for the rich to stay that way." Bloomberg Businessweek
Human rights group Amnesty International was mostly silent for quite a while after the Wikileaks scandal hit the fan. Initially, Amnesty had responded only to a handful of select revelations that corroborated its suspicions of human rights abuses, like the airstrikes on Yemen.
Now Amnesty has released a much broader Q&A on the whole Wikileaks matter and freedom of expression. Below are some key excerpts.
Would prosecution of Julian Assange for releasing US government documents be a violation of the right to freedom of expression?
By Rady Ananda
Just released yesterday, a November 19, 2009 leaked cable indicates Pope Benedict XVI supports genetically modified foods, though he will not publicly admit it. A June 2009 cable from the US Vatican Embassy confirmed the Pontiff’s refusal to take a stance on GM foods, which was verified in December 2010 by a Vatican spokesperson. However, this latest cable tells quite a different story:
"Linking development with use of agricultural technologies (i.e., biotechnologies), Benedict stressed good governance and further infrastructure development as essential to increasing food security over the long-term. (Note: Benedict's mention of agricultural technologies is a small but significant step towards more vocal Vatican support of biotechnologies. End Note)"
by Stephen Lendman
Seven previous articles discussed her case and status, explaining the gross injustice against a heroic human rights lawyer who devoted her career to defending society's poor, unwanted, and unfairly persecuted - defendants deprived of due process without an advocate like her.
She knew the risks, yet took them courageously, until prosecutorial injustice convicted and imprisoned her for doing her job - defending an unpopular client too vigorously.
Interned on November 19, 2009 at MCC-NY, she remained there until transferred. Her family and attorneys requested FCI Danbury, CT close to home, a facility for low security female prisoners with a satellite camp for minimum security ones. No matter. She was denied the logical choice for a more punitive one.
Walking into any “court” of late one might have a distinct impression that one has walked into a monarch's domain. The rule of law only applies at the discretion of the monarch. And that would be the judge sitting in that particular court.
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