Friday, May 31, 2013

Nice guy...

'I don't feel sorry for them': Bush risks wrath of injured veterans saying he has no sympathy because they volunteered their service

The president was speaking during a 100K bike ride with some amputated and injured veterans
Said he doesn't 'feel sorry for them, because they don't feel sorry for themselves'
Bush also said 'power can be corrosive if you've had it for too long'

By Daniel Bates

George W Bush has risked a backlash from veterans by claiming that he does not feel sorry for soldiers who were injured after he sent them into battle.

The former President said that that 'to a certain extent you can’t help it' when men got hurt on the battlefield.

He claimed that because soldiers are volunteers it absolved him from blame to a degree - and claimed that none of them were angry about their injuries.

Mr Bush said: 'You know, I don't feel sorry for them, because they don't feel sorry for themselves'.

His comments are likely to be seen by Democrats as another attempt to whitewash his legacy as one of the least popular presidents in history.

But they risk angering veterans' groups who have long backed him as a former Commander in Chief.

During his presidency Mr Bush embarked on two wars in Iraq and Afghanistan resulting in a total of 6,471 American troops being killed so far...

Read more:

“Wait a minute. If there isn’t an embargo against Vietnam, why is there an embargo against Cuba?”

An Example of Deference to Authority
by Jacob G. Hornberger

In yesterday’s blog post, I pointed out that the real purpose of public (i.e., government) schooling is to produce good little citizens who defer to the authority of the federal government. Through 12 years of regimentation within an army-lite structure, the minds of people are gradually molded from childhood to trustingly defer to the judgment of federal officials, especially when it comes to things like “national security.”

One might say, “Jacob, give us an example of what you’re talking about.”

Okay, let’s consider the U.S. government’s half-century-old economic embargo against Cuba. Here is a perfect example of how Americans have been molded into good little citizens who place their unwavering faith in the judgment of the federal government, loyally deferring to its authority. The last thing most Americans would ever think of doing is questioning or challenging the Cuban embargo.

Let’s first examine the reality of the situation. The Cuban embargo is a direct attack on the freedom of the American people at the hands of their own government. The federal government has made it a severe federal criminal offense for Americans to travel to Cuba and spend money there. If an American does this, upon his return to the United States he will be arrested, charged, prosecuted, convicted, sentenced to jail, and fined.

It would be difficult to find a more direct assault on the principles of freedom of travel and the principles of economic liberty than that, even in Cuba. Fundamental principles of freedom entail the right to freely travel wherever a person wants and the right to spend one’s money anywhere and any way a person desires.

Yet, how many Americans are outraged over such a clear violation of these two fundamental, God-given rights? Not many. The only ones who are outraged are libertarians, along with a very tiny number of liberals and conservatives.

Most Americans don’t question these infringements on their freedom. In fact, it doesn’t even occur to them that the embargo constitutes an infringement on their freedom. In their minds, they’re convinced they’re free and that it’s only people like Cubans who are unfree. It never occurs to the average American that the embargo is no different in principle from the types of economic controls that the communist regime in Cuba imposes on Cubans.

The mindset of the average American is: If the U.S. government feels that the embargo is necessary, then who are we to question such a policy? His mindset is one of total deference to authority. It is a mindset that trusts the judgment of federal officials. In his mind, it is not the job of the citizen to question or challenge such things.

Whatever the federal government cites as a rationale for embargo is automatically accepted as gospel. When U.S. officials proclaim that the embargo is necessary because Cuba has a communist regime, the average American just nods his head and thinks, “Yep, that’s right. The government is correct. Cuba is headed by those no good commies.”

It never occurs to him to think: “So what? So what if Cuba is headed by communists. Why should that entitle the U.S. government to suspend my rights and liberty?” Asking questions like that requires critical thinking and could lead to disagreement with federal officials, including those in the military and the CIA. That’s not what public schooling teaches, and it’s a frightening notion to people who have learned to defer to authority.

Let’s not forget, after all, that Vietnam is also headed by a communist regime, one that killed some 58,000 American soldiers during the Vietnam War. Yet, is there a U.S. embargo against Vietnam? No one (except libertarians and a few others) says: “Wait a minute. If there isn’t an embargo against Vietnam, why is there an embargo against Cuba?” That thought doesn’t even enter the mind of the indoctrinated person. He just passively accepts the decision of his national-security state.

Don’t forget that Cuba has never attacked or invaded the United States, committed terrorist attacks against the United States, or tried to assassinate any U.S. officials. In fact, it’s been the U.S. national-security state—specifically the Pentagon and the CIA—that has done to those things to Cuba.

But try to find an American who asks: “Why in the world is the U.S. government aggressing against Cuba and infringing on my economic liberty?” The mindsets of the American people have been molded since childhood to passively accept and even support anything their federal government does with respect to Cuba, especially when U.S. officials use such terms as “communism” and “national security” to justify their actions.

Among all the horrible consequences of public schooling has been the production of good little citizens whose mindsets lead them to defer to the authority of their federal officials. The success of the indoctrination is reflected by the fact that not only do those who have been indoctrinated believe that what was done to them was good and beneficial but also by the fact that they don’t even realize that they are the victims of indoctrination. This phenomenon, of course, exists not only here in the United States but also in the country targeted by the U.S. embargo. Like the United States, Cuba also has a very strong public-schooling system, one that molds the minds of its citizens to defer to authority as well.


Another budding terrorist stopped by the authorities...

5-year-old Interrogated By School Over Toy Cap Gun Until He Wet Himself With Fear

Then suspended for rest of the year

Steve Watson

Yet another child barely out of nappies has been persecuted by school officials for playing with a toy gun on the school bus.

The Washington Post reports that the five-year-old from Dowell Elementary School in Lusby, Maryland was questioned by school officials for over two hours after he showed a friend his cowboy-style cap gun on the way to school.

Officials finally called the boy’s mother when he wet his pants. The mother told the Post that she found it highly unusual that her son soiled himself, indicating that he was very intimidated.

The report states that the boy’s parents bought him the plastic, orange-tipped cap gun at Frontier Town, a western-themed adventure centre. Following the interrogation, the boy told his mother that he had brought it to school because he had “really, really” wanted to show his friend, who had previously brought a water pistol to school.

The school’s principal told the mother that her son had pointed the toy at other students and pretended to shoot them, although the boy and his sister, who was also on the bus and subsequently questioned, say this is not the case.

The principal even stated that had the gun been “loaded” with caps, then it would have been “deemed an explosive and police would have been called in.”

The boy, who remains anonymous has been suspended from school for 10 days. “If the punishment stands, it would become part of the boy’s permanent school record and keep him out of classes the rest of the school year,” the report notes.

“The school was quite obviously taking it very seriously, and he’s 5 years old,” the boy’s mother said. “Why were we not immediately contacted?”

“I have no problem that he had a consequence to his behavior,” the mother added. “What I have a problem with is the severity.”

The family has hired attorney Robin Ficker, who was also the attorney involved in the infamous Hello Kitty bubble gun incident back in January, when school officials in Pennsylvania suspended a five-year-old girl for “threatening” class mates with the toy that contains a harmless soap solution. Officials were also said to have interrogated the girl for several hours, before notifying her parents.

Officials at the Mount Carmel school issued a statement describing the girl’s actions as “terroristic” and then refused to retract it following media coverage.

“Kids play cowboys and Indians,” Ficker stated with regards to the latest incident. He added that the boy’s age is important. “They play cops and robbers. You’re talking about a little 5-year-old here.”

He’s “all bugs and frogs and cowboys,” the boy’s mother added.

School officials said they cannot comment on the matter but have scheduled a “disciplinary conference” today to resolve it.

This latest knee-jerk overreaction to children playing with anything that even remotely resembles a gun comes just days after another kindergartner was punished by school officials and forced to apologise for bringing a tiny miniature lego gun onto a school bus.

The list of previous incidents of this nature is now so long that it has prompted Maryland Sen. J. B. Jennings to introduce a bill to stop such idiotic over reactions being played out over and over again in schools.

In March, a 7-year-old boy from Maryland was suspended for unintentionally biting his pop tart into the shape of a gun.

A third grader in Michigan was reprimanded by school officials when he brought a cupcake to school with a plastic toy soldier, holding a gun, on top of it.

A ten year old Virginia boy who was arrested for taking a plastic toy gun to school was forced to deal with a potentially permanent criminal record over the incident.

A student in Florence, Arizona was recently suspended because he had a picture of a gun on his computer.

A six-year-old kindergartner in South Carolina was suspended for taking a small transparent plastic toy gun to school for a show and tell.

A five-year-old in Massachusetts who faced suspension for building a small toy gun out of lego bricks and play-shooting his classmates.

We also reported on an incident that erupted when a discussion between two children about a toy nerf gun caused a lockdown and a massive armed police response at two elementary schools in the Bronx.

In another incident, a Long Island high school was also placed on lock down for 6 hours in response to a student carrying a toy nerf gun.

The nerf gun was once again the deadly weapon of choice as a university campus in Rhode Island was placed on lockdown, causing panic and minor injuries when a stampede to flee the building ensued.

In another incident, a teacher at Malden High School in Massachusetts who glimpsed sight of a “gun”, alerted police who rushed to the scene only to discover a neon water pistol. School officials then vowed to track down the suspect who brought the toy to school using surveillance cameras.

A South Philadelphia elementary student was searched in front of classmates and threatened with arrest after she mistakenly brought a “paper gun” to school.

A 6-year-old boy was suspended from his elementary school, also in Maryland, for making a gun gesture with his hand and saying “pow”.

Another two 6-year-olds in Maryland were suspended for pointing their fingers into gun shapes while playing “cops and robbers” with each other.

A couple of second grade students at a Virginia elementary school were recently suspended for two days after violating the school’s “zero tolerance” policy on weapons when they pointed pencils at other students and made gun noises.

In Oklahoma, a five-year-old boy was also recently suspended for making a gun gesture with his hand.

A 13-year-old Middle School seventh grade student in Pennsylvania was also suspended for the same hand gesture.

The terrorists really are everywhere these days.


"One assumes the school district will be more open about the survey next year, if only to avoid another incident like this. Better still, the district should just scrap the whole thing and mind its own business."

High School Teacher Disciplined for Reminding Students of Their Rights

Written by Michael Tennant

An Illinois high school teacher was disciplined for giving his students a real-life lesson in how to apply a subject they had just studied: the Bill of Rights.

On April 18, Batavia High School in Batavia, Illinois, asked teachers to distribute a “social-emotional learning survey” to their students. “The survey is part of measuring how students meet the social-emotional learning standards set by the state,” reported the Arlington Heights Daily Herald. “It is the first year Batavia has administered such a survey.”

As if it weren’t bad enough that the school was delving into students’ personal lives, the survey — each copy of which had a student’s name printed on it — asked questions about students’ drug and alcohol use. When social studies teacher John Dryden, who had just finished teaching a unit on the Bill of Rights, was given the surveys to hand out to his class, he began reading the questions and realized there was a problem: If a student admitted to using drugs or alcohol, he could be incriminating himself, something the Fifth Amendment was designed to prevent. This, he thought, was particularly important in light of the fact that there is a police officer stationed at the school.

Having no time to check with administrators — he’d picked up the surveys 10 minutes before his first class, and they were to be administered that day — Dryden told the Herald he “made a judgment call” to remind his first three classes of their constitutional rights. (The survey was completed during the third class period.) He said he would have discussed the matter with administrators had he received the surveys or been informed of their contents in advance and that he did raise the issue with them afterward.

“I advised my students that they had a Fifth Amendment right not to incriminate themselves,” Dryden told reporters prior to a May 28 school board meeting to review his actions. “It was not my intention for them not to take the survey.”

Dryden suspects another teacher informed the administration of what he had done when the students in that teacher’s class balked at responding to the survey.

For reminding his students of their rights, Dryden was reprimanded by the Batavia school board. He received a “letter of remedy, which outlines certain actions he must do or face more consequences,” the Herald wrote following the board meeting. In addition, the 20-year veteran of Batavia High School “said he was docked a day’s pay,” according to the Kane County Chronicle.

This occurred despite an outpouring of support for Dryden from current and former students, parents, teachers, and other members of the community. Many took to Facebook, e-mail, and even an online petition site (the petition has over 8,800 signers as of this writing) to protest Dryden’s treatment. The Chronicle reported that “dozens” also turned out to speak on his behalf at the board meeting. “Several” of them, said the Herald, told the board that “rather than being disciplined, Dryden should have been praised for reminding students they have the right to not incriminate themselves.”

“These kids need to know that the U.S. Constitution is there for them,” Batavia alderman Alan Wolff told the board.

Saying Dryden is an excellent instructor, “able to break through student apathy like no other teacher I know,” fellow Batavia High School teacher Scott Bayer informed the board, “Every teacher I talked to addressed students in the same way.”

“We as teachers were put in a situation where we were forced to react,” he explained. “Things were not communicated very well, students were apprehensive and had questions, and we couldn’t give answers.”

According to the Herald, “Several parents said they had not received notice from the district that they could choose to not have their child take the survey,” a notice that was sent by e-mail and required parents to notify the district by April 17 if they wanted their children excused from the survey.

“I was not made aware a survey was going to be issued to my son, and basically was not given any opportunity to protect his privacy rights,” Meg Humphrey, a biology teacher at the school and parent of one of its students, told the board. She also had privacy concerns because the company that sold the survey to the district is privy to students’ responses.

Emily Farrell, another parent, argued that the survey was “a complete invasion of personal information” that asked “very personal questions.”

None of this swayed the members of the school board — save one, Jon Gaspar, who voted not to reprimand Dryden but declined to elaborate on his reasons.

“The board will not support any employees giving students false impressions about those who come here every day” to work for their best interests, board president Cathy Dremel told reporters.

Likewise, Superintendent Jack Barshinger, in a statement issued following the board’s decision, said:

District teachers, social workers, guidance counselors, psychologists and others worked together for over a year to select a data-gathering instrument that could be used to determine what social or emotional issues our high school students are experiencing, and whether individual students could benefit from new or increased supportive intervention by our staff. These purposes were shared with our parents and our teachers.

The issue before the Board tonight was whether one employee has the right to mischaracterize the efforts of our teachers, counselors, social workers and others; and tell our students, in effect, that the adults are not here to help, but that they are trying to get you to "incriminate" yourselves.

However, as Reason’s Jacob Sullum observed:

Barshinger seems to think it is inconceivable that there could be anything wrong with the survey, since people with good intentions worked on it for “over a year.” Yet the survey forms that Dryden picked up from his mailbox 10 minutes before his first class on April 18 not only asked about illegal behavior; they had students’ names on them, thereby destroying any assurance of confidentiality. Even if the people who selected the survey were not trying to get students to incriminate themselves, that was the inevitable result if students who had broken the law by drinking or using illegal drugs answered the questions candidly. What guarantee did they have that their answers would not be used against them, if only to pressure them into accepting the “supportive intervention” deemed appropriate by the school? As Ronald Reagan was fond of saying, much damage can be caused by people from the government who are “here to help.”

In fact, school personnel did review students’ responses. (Otherwise, what would be the point of the survey?) “Those whose answers raised red flags were called in to the school’s student services workers, including social workers and counselors,” penned the Herald. Sullum’s — and Dryden’s — concerns are therefore well-founded.

One assumes the school district will be more open about the survey next year, if only to avoid another incident like this. Better still, the district should just scrap the whole thing and mind its own business.


"Dishonesty from politicians is nothing new for Americans. The real question is whether we are lying to ourselves when we call this country the land of the free."

10 Reasons The U.S. Is No Longer The Land Of The Free

New America Now – by Jonathan Turley

Below is a column in the Sunday Washington Post. The column addresses how the continued rollbacks on civil liberties in the United States conflicts with the view of the country as the land of the free.

If we are going to adopt Chinese legal principles, we should at least have the integrity to adopt one Chinese proverb: “The beginning of wisdom is to call things by their right names.” We seem as a country to be in denial as to the implications of these laws and policies.

Whether we are viewed as a free country with authoritarian inclinations or an authoritarian nation with free aspirations (or some other hybrid definition), we are clearly not what we once were. [Update: in addition to the column below, a later column in the Washington Post explores more closely the loss of free speech rights in the West].

Every year, the State Department issues reports on individual rights in other countries, monitoring the passage of restrictive laws and regulations around the world. Iran, for example, has been criticized for denying fair public trials and limiting privacy, while Russia has been taken to task for undermining due process. Other countries have been condemned for the use of secret evidence and torture.

Even as we pass judgment on countries we consider unfree, Americans remain confident that any definition of a free nation must include their own — the land of free. Yet, the laws and practices of the land should shake that confidence. In the decade since Sept. 11, 2001, this country has comprehensively reduced civil liberties in the name of an expanded security state. The most recent example of this was the National Defense Authorization Act, signed Dec. 31, which allows for the indefinite detention of citizens. At what point does the reduction of individual rights in our country change how we define ourselves?

While each new national security power Washington has embraced was controversial when enacted, they are often discussed in isolation. But they don’t operate in isolation. They form a mosaic of powers under which our country could be considered, at least in part, authoritarian. Americans often proclaim our nation as a symbol of freedom to the world while dismissing nations such as Cuba and China as categorically unfree. Yet, objectively, we may be only half right. Those countries do lack basic individual rights such as due process, placing them outside any reasonable definition of “free,” but the United States now has much more in common with such regimes than anyone may like to admit.

These countries also have constitutions that purport to guarantee freedoms and rights. But their governments have broad discretion in denying those rights and few real avenues for challenges by citizens — precisely the problem with the new laws in this country.

The list of powers acquired by the U.S. government since 9/11 puts us in rather troubling company.

Assassination of U.S. citizens

President Obama has claimed, as President George W. Bush did before him, the right to order the killing of any citizen considered a terrorist or an abettor of terrorism. Last year, he approved the killing of U.S. citizen Anwar al-Awlaqi and another citizen under this claimed inherent authority. Last month, administration officials affirmed that power, stating that the president can order the assassination of any citizen whom he considers allied with terrorists. (Nations such as Nigeria, Iran and Syria have been routinely criticized for extrajudicial killings of enemies of the state.)

Indefinite detention

Under the law signed last month, terrorism suspects are to be held by the military; the president also has the authority to indefinitely detain citizens accused of terrorism. While Sen. Carl Levin insisted the bill followed existing law “whatever the law is,” the Senate specifically rejected an amendment that would exempt citizens and the Administration has opposed efforts to challenge such authority in federal court. The Administration continues to claim the right to strip citizens of legal protections based on its sole discretion. (China recently codified a more limited detention law for its citizens, while countries such as Cambodia have been singled out by the United States for “prolonged detention.”)

Arbitrary justice

The president now decides whether a person will receive a trial in the federal courts or in a military tribunal, a system that has been ridiculed around the world for lacking basic due process protections. Bush claimed this authority in 2001, and Obama has continued the practice. (Egypt and China have been denounced for maintaining separate military justice systems for selected defendants, including civilians.)

Warrantless searches

The president may now order warrantless surveillance, including a new capability to force companies and organizations to turn over information on citizens’ finances, communications and associations. Bush acquired this sweeping power under the Patriot Act in 2001, and in 2011, Obama extended the power, including searches of everything from business documents to library records. The government can use “national security letters” to demand, without probable cause, that organizations turn over information on citizens — and order them not to reveal the disclosure to the affected party. (Saudi Arabia and Pakistan operate under laws that allow the government to engage in widespread discretionary surveillance.)

Secret evidence

The government now routinely uses secret evidence to detain individuals and employs secret evidence in federal and military courts. It also forces the dismissal of cases against the United States by simply filing declarations that the cases would make the government reveal classified information that would harm national security — a claim made in a variety of privacy lawsuits and largely accepted by federal judges without question. Even legal opinions, cited as the basis for the government’s actions under the Bush and Obama administrations, have been classified. This allows the government to claim secret legal arguments to support secret proceedings using secret evidence. In addition, some cases never make it to court at all. The federal courts routinely deny constitutional challenges to policies and programs under a narrow definition of standing to bring a case.

War crimes

The world clamored for prosecutions of those responsible for waterboarding terrorism suspects during the Bush administration, but the Obama administration said in 2009 that it would not allow CIA employees to be investigated or prosecuted for such actions. This gutted not just treaty obligations but the Nuremberg principles of international law. When courts in countries such as Spain moved to investigate Bush officials for war crimes, the Obama administration reportedly urged foreign officials not to allow such cases to proceed, despite the fact that the United States has long claimed the same authority with regard to alleged war criminals in other countries. (Various nations have resisted investigations of officials accused of war crimes and torture. Some, such as Serbia and Chile, eventually relented to comply with international law; countries that have denied independent investigations include Iran, Syria and China.)

Secret court

The government has increased its use of the secret Foreign Intelligence Surveillance Court, which has expanded its secret warrants to include individuals deemed to be aiding or abetting hostile foreign governments or organizations. In 2011, Obama renewed these powers, including allowing secret searches of individuals who are not part of an identifiable terrorist group. The administration has asserted the right to ignore congressional limits on such surveillance. (Pakistan places national security surveillance under the unchecked powers of the military or intelligence services.)

Immunity from judicial review

Like the Bush administration, the Obama administration has successfully pushed for immunity for companies that assist in warrantless surveillance of citizens, blocking the ability of citizens to challenge the violation of privacy. (Similarly, China has maintained sweeping immunity claims both inside and outside the country and routinely blocks lawsuits against private companies.)

Continual monitoring of citizens

The Obama administration has successfully defended its claim that it can use GPS devices to monitor every move of targeted citizens without securing any court order or review. It is not defending the power before the Supreme Court — a power described by Justice Anthony Kennedy as “Orwellian.” (Saudi Arabia has installed massive public surveillance systems, while Cuba is notorious for active monitoring of selected citizens.)

Extraordinary renditions

The government now has the ability to transfer both citizens and noncitizens to another country under a system known as extraordinary rendition, which has been denounced as using other countries, such as Syria, Saudi Arabia, Egypt and Pakistan, to torture suspects. The Obama administration says it is not continuing the abuses of this practice under Bush, but it insists on the unfettered right to order such transfers — including the possible transfer of U.S. citizens.

These new laws have come with an infusion of money into an expanded security system on the state and federal levels, including more public surveillance cameras, tens of thousands of security personnel and a massive expansion of a terrorist-chasing bureaucracy.

Some politicians shrug and say these increased powers are merely a response to the times we live in. Thus, Sen. Lindsey Graham (R-S.C.) could declare in an interview last spring without objection that “free speech is a great idea, but we’re in a war.” Of course, terrorism will never “surrender” and end this particular “war.”
Other politicians rationalize that, while such powers may exist, it really comes down to how they are used. This is a common response by liberals who cannot bring themselves to denounce Obama as they did Bush. Sen. Carl Levin (D-Mich.), for instance, has insisted that Congress is not making any decision on indefinite detention: “That is a decision which we leave where it belongs — in the executive branch.”

And in a signing statement with the defense authorization bill, Obama said he does not intend to use the latest power to indefinitely imprison citizens. Yet, he still accepted the power as a sort of regretful autocrat.
An authoritarian nation is defined not just by the use of authoritarian powers, but by the ability to use them. If a president can take away your freedom or your life on his own authority, all rights become little more than a discretionary grant subject to executive will.

The framers lived under autocratic rule and understood this danger better than we do. James Madison famously warned that we needed a system that did not depend on the good intentions or motivations of our rulers: “If men were angels, no government would be necessary.”

Benjamin Franklin was more direct. In 1787, a Mrs. Powel confronted Franklin after the signing of the Constitution and asked, “Well, Doctor, what have we got — a republic or a monarchy?” His response was a bit chilling: “A republic, Madam, if you can keep it.”

Since 9/11, we have created the very government the framers feared: a government with sweeping and largely unchecked powers resting on the hope that they will be used wisely.

The indefinite-detention provision in the defense authorization bill seemed to many civil libertarians like a betrayal by Obama. While the president had promised to veto the law over that provision, Levin, a sponsor of the bill, disclosed on the Senate floor that it was in fact the White House that approved the removal of any exception for citizens from indefinite detention.

Dishonesty from politicians is nothing new for Americans. The real question is whether we are lying to ourselves when we call this country the land of the free.


Prison labor booms in US as low-cost inmates bring billions...

Russ Baker, US investigative journalist and founder of on AP scandal...

"They’re challenging the very system that the state uses to indoctrinate students. They’re doing what people would learn to do in a free-market educational system, one in which there is no state involvement at all. They’re asking questions, they’re challenging, they’re engaging in critical thinking. And that is awesome!"

Public Schooling Teaches Deference to Authority
by Jacob G. Hornberger

Following up on my blog post of yesterday regarding public schooling, yesterday’s New York Times had a really interesting article about public schooling in Thailand that demonstrated perfectly the real purpose of this socialistic program—to produce good little citizens who loyally defer to the authority of the government. Through of a system of imposed regimentation and conformity over a period of many years, the state is able to produce malleable mindsets within people that mold themselves to whatever government officials say, mindsets that are unable and unwilling to engage in independent, critical thinking when it comes to major government policies.

Public schooling is actually army-lite. Here in the United States, at the age of six every child is effectively drafted into the government’s educational system. Every child is mandated to subject himself to a government-approved education. If he fails to do so, his parents go to jail or even have their children taken away from them.

Most American children respond to the state’s compulsory-attendance laws by dutifully reporting to the government institutions known as public schools. Of course, we call them public schools but they are really government schools. They are owned and operated by local and state governmental bureaucracies.

Wealthy Americans are able to send their children to private schools. There, state control is not as direct as it is in public schools, but the control is still there nonetheless. Private schools can operate only with a license issued by the state. If the state yanks the license, the school goes out of business. Thus, most private schools must ensure that their overall educational framework meets the demands and expectations of the state.

Homeschooled students have the best chance to develop an independent mindset. But even then, in many states the homeschooling curriculum and methods are subject to state supervision and control. If the state doesn’t approve of how the student is developing, it will order the child to report to a government-approved school.

The Times’ article about public schooling in Thailand explains the true nature of public schooling:

In Thai schools, a drill sergeant’s dream of regimentation rooted in the military dictatorships of the past, discipline and enforced deference prevail.

At a public school in this industrial Bangkok suburb, teachers wield bamboo canes and reprimand students for long hair, ordering it sheared on the spot. Students are inspected for dirty fingernails, colored socks or any other violation of the school dress code.

“At a fundamental level, students should have the same appearance,” said Arun Wanpen, the vice principal, who presided over the morning ceremony one recent school day. A sea of uniformed students with close-cropped black hair (no dyed hair is allowed) sang the national anthem, recited a Buddhist incantation and repeated a pledge to sacrifice their lives for the nation, love the king and “not cause any trouble.”

What’s fascinating is that there are some Thai students who are rising up and challenging the system, must as libertarians challenge public schooling here in the United States. According to the article,

Yet as the legacy of military rule fades, some students are rising up and challenging, with some success, a system that stresses unquestioned obedience….

Late last year, a freethinking Thai high school student, Nethiwit Chotpatpaisan, who goes by the nickname Frank, started a Facebook campaign calling for the abolition of the “mechanistic” education system….

“School is like a factory that manufactures identical people,” he said one recent morning at his school, Nawaminthrachinuthit Triam Udomsuksa Pattanakarn, the same school where Mr. Arun is vice principal.

Frank described the teachers there as “dictators” who order students to “bow, bow, bow” and never to contradict them.

Sompong Jitradub, an education expert in Thailand made an observation about Thai public-school students that easily applies to public-school students in the United States as well: “All they do is memorize. They never think critically. They never exchange opinions.”

One of the students rebelling against the system is 16-year-old Nutcha Piboonwatthana, who self-declared mission is “getting Thai girls, who are trained from an early age to be deferential, to be more adventurous.” She said, “Girls think inside the box. They are very good at studying. I just want the girls to realize there is a world outside of school.”

What is exciting is that clearly these students are achieving the same type of “breakthrough” that characterizes American libertarians. I’m not suggesting, of course, that they have embraced libertarianism. The probability is that they haven’t even heard of it. But they are clearly breaking free of the state’s indoctrination to which children are subjected in public schools.

In fact, these students are what might be the called public-school failure stories. They’re challenging the very system that the state uses to indoctrinate students. They’re doing what people would learn to do in a free-market educational system, one in which there is no state involvement at all. They’re asking questions, they’re challenging, they’re engaging in critical thinking. And that is awesome!


Faking It: How the Media Manipulates the World into War...

More benefits of fish oil...

Fish oil fats protect brain against damage caused by a junk food diet

by: John Phillip

Medical nutrition scientists have written volumes that show how the nutrients from the foods we eat daily alter our genetic structure as well as the metabolism of every one of the trillions of cells in our body. Neurons in the brain are particularly susceptible to an accurately-delivered array of nutrients and critical omega-3 fats to help maintain memory, spatial learning and cognitive function.

A number of past studies clearly demonstrate that eating one high-fat junk food meal from the typical fast food restaurant measurably changes the expression of genes that help control the development and spread of cancer, and the retention of critical short term memories as well. In fact, the excessive sugar content and hydrogenated fats from junk foods are known to disrupt insulin levels in the brain and displace essential omega-3 fats needed to construct and maintain cell structure and assist electrical and chemical messaging.

A research team from the University of Liverpool's Institute of Ageing and Chronic Disease has published the result of a study in the British Journal of Nutrition that shows how fish oils could minimize the effects that junk food have on the brain. Over the past decade, researchers have demonstrated that high-fat and high-sugar diets could disrupt neurogenesis, a process that generates new nerve cells. Diets rich in omega-3 fats help prevent these negative effects by stimulating an area of the brain that controls feeding, learning and memory.

Consuming fish or fish oil supplements supports normal hormone release after a junk food meal

In the largest study to date, scientists accumulated data from 185 studies showing that omega-3 fats from the diet play a significant role in stalling refined sugars and saturated fats' ability to inhibit the brain's control on the body's intake of food. The lead study author, Dr. Lucy Pickavance commented "Body weight is influenced by many factors, and some of the most important of these are the nutrients we consume. Excessive intake of certain macronutrients, the refined sugars and saturated fats found in junk food, can lead to weight gain, disrupt metabolism and even affect mental processing."

Researchers were able to determine that excess fats and sugars alter the secretion of critical hormones after eating that normally protect neurons and stimulate their growth. These hormones are prevented from passing into the brain by increased circulation of inflammatory molecules and a type of fat called triglycerides. The team found that omega-3 fats restore normal function by interfering with the production of these inflammatory molecules, suppressing triglycerides, and returning nerve growth factors to normal.

Learn more:

"If you believe President Obama, however, terrorists don't need the FBI to help them out. All they have to do is get online."

Obama blames internet websites for rise in 'domestic terrorism' even though FBI runs most terror plots

by: J. D. Heyes

In a foreign policy speech the afternoon of May 23 at the National Defense University in Washington, D.C., President Obama made a startling claim about terrorism.

It seems that, thanks to the World Wide Web, the threat has escalated dramatically. No proof, of course, was offered to support this amazing supposition, so we are left to take the president's word for it.

Once again, this president says it's our fault

"[T]his threat is not new," Obama said. "But technology and the Internet increase its frequency and lethality."

He went on to warn us that materials posted on the Internet are able to convince people to commit acts of terror.

"Today, a person can consume hateful propaganda, commit themselves to a violent agenda and learn how to kill without leaving their home," he said.

In order combat this threat, the president said it was vital that we reach out to Muslim communities.

"The best way to prevent violent extremism is to work with the Muslim American community - which has consistently rejected terrorism - to identify signs of radicalization and partner with law enforcement when an individual is drifting towards violence," he said. "And these partnerships can only work when we recognize that Muslims are a fundamental part of the American family."

But if this community has "consistently rejected terrorism," who is going online to become radicalized enough to attack America? Mr. President?

Those who want to commit violence - will

As usual, our "blame America first" president fails to mention that anyone predisposed to committing acts of terror is going to go looking for materials that will help them accomplish their mission wherever they can find such material. Some of those materials are indeed posted online, but other materials are elsewhere. Still, this amazing claim ignores basic human behavior: you have to want to find such material before you go looking.

It's not the posting of the material that radicalizes someone; it's a radicalized someone who goes in search of the material.

That said, this is a two-phase story, because there is also another little-discussed aspect to this domestic "terror" threat: the FBI. Didn't hear Obama mention that, did you?

Government-manufactured threat

As we have reported here at NaturalNews, the nation's top law enforcement agency is responsible for "staging" many of the "thwarted" terrorist attacks since 9/11.

A year ago, as evidenced by no less than The New York Times, the FBI in recent preceding months arrested suspects who were planning a range of terrorist attacks, from shooting Stinger missiles at military aircraft to driving van loads of explosives into crowded events.

But these amazing cases might not have ever been made if the FBI itself wasn't themselves planning the attacks.

Consider the case of Oregon college student Mohamed Osman Mohamud. He thought about using a car bomb to attack a well-attended, festive Christmas tree-lighting ceremony in Portland. The FBI gave him a van packed with inert explosives consisting of some real, but inactive, detonators and six 55-gallon drums, along with a gallon of diesel fuel. An FBI agent even drove the van. When Mohamud called the cell phone number that was supposed to trigger the explosion, nothing explosive happened, except that he got arrested.

Would this guy have seriously planned this attack were it not for the considerable assistance of the FBI?

They should have just gone online

Mohamud's case is far from the only one manufactured by the FBI, and it is certainly not the only one that has held up in court. In fact, such operations are not only legal but they are a common counterterrorism tactic employed by the agency in the post-9/11 world, the Times noted.

The agency, of course, defends its actions.

"Many times," says Dean Boyd, a Justice Department spokesman, "suspects are warned about the seriousness of their plots and given opportunities to back out." But, the Times report indicates recorded conversations show that the warning is not always given, and that in some cases suspects are even encouraged to continue.

If you believe President Obama, however, terrorists don't need the FBI to help them out. All they have to do is get online.

Learn more:

The cost of Globalism...

The Social Cost Of Capitalism

Paul Craig Roberts

When I was a graduate student in economics, the social cost of capitalism was a big issue in economic theory. Since those decades ago, the social costs of capitalism have exploded, but the issue seems no longer to trouble the economics profession.

Social costs are costs of production that are not born by the producer or included in the price of the product. There are many classic examples: the pollution of air, water, and land from mining, fracking, oil drilling and pipeline spills, chemical fertilizer farming, GMOs, pesticides, radioactivity released from nuclear accidents, and the the pollution of food by antibiotics and artificial hormones.

Some economists believe that these traditional social costs can be dealt with by well defined property rights. Others think that benevolent government will control social costs in the interests of society.

Today there are new social costs brought by globalism. For developed countries, these are unemployment, lost consumer income, tax base, and GDP growth, and rising trade and current account deficits from the offshoring of manufacturing and tradable professional service jobs. The trade and current account deficits can result in a falling exchange value of the currency and rising inflation from import prices. For underdeveloped countries, the costs are the loss of self-sufficiency and the transformation of agriculture into monocultures to feed the needs of international corporations.

Economists are oblivious to this new epidemic of social costs, because they mistakenly think that globalism is free trade and that free trade is always beneficial.

Economists are also unaware of the social costs of deregulation. The ongoing financial crisis which requires massive public subsidies to “banks too big to fail” is a social cost resulting from government accommodating Wall Street pressure to deregulate the financial system by repealing the Glass-Steagall Act, by removing the position limits on speculators, by preventing the CFTC from regulating derivatives, and by turning the Anti-Trust Act into dead-letter law and permitting massive economic concentrations. The social costs of successful corporate lobbying is enormous. But economists who believe that markets are self-regulating imagine that an enormous gain in efficiency has occurred, not massive social costs.

In order to keep the deregulated financial system afloat, the Federal Reserve has monetized trillions of dollars of debt over the last several years. Real interest rates have been driven into negative territory. Retirees are unable to earn any interest income on their savings and have to draw down their capital in order to cover their living expenses.

The liquidity injected into financial markets by the Federal Reserve’s policy of quantitative easing has produced huge bond and stock market bubbles. When they pop, more American wealth will be wiped out and more jobs will be lost.

Consider just one example of the social costs of jobs offshoring. When US corporations produce abroad the goods and services that they market to Americans, the goods and services that flow into the US arrive as imports. Thus, the trade deficit rises dollar for dollar.

The trade deficit means that the US has imported more than it has earned in foreign currencies by exporting. For most countries this would be a problem, but not for the US. The US dollar is the world reserve currency, which means that it is the means of international payment and that foreign central banks hold US dollars as reserves to secure the values of their own currencies.

With the passage of time, this advantage becomes a disadvantage, because foreigners use the dollars gained from their trade surpluses to buy up American income-producing assets. They buy US Treasury bonds and US corporate bonds, and the interest income leaves the country. They purchase US companies, and the profits, dividends and capital gains leave the country. They lease Chicago’s parking meters and American toll roads, and the revenues flow abroad.

The enormous outflow of income streams creates a large current account deficit for the US, which means that foreigners have even more surplus dollars with which to buy up more US assets. In other words, a chronic trade deficit is a way to redirect a country’s revenues and profits into overseas hands.

The ownership of a country changes from its own citizens to foreigners. According to Reuters, in 1971 foreign companies owned 1.3% of all corporate US assets.

By 2008 foreigners owned 14.2 percent of all US industries, including 21.5% of mining, 25% of manufacturing, 30.2% of wholesale trade, 12% of information industries, 12% of real estate, 15% of finance and insurance, 25% of professional, scientific, and technical services, 11% of entertainment and recreation and 11% of accommodation and food services, according to a report from Economy In Crisis.

Numerous famous American brand names now are companies owned by foreigners.
Budweiser belongs to a Dutch company. Alka Seltzer belongs to a German company.
Firestone belongs to a Japanese company. The magazines Car and Driver and Woman’s Day are owned by a French company. Gerber baby food and Purina dog food belong to Swiss companies. Hellman’s Mayonnaise and Ben & Jerry’s ice cream belong to UK companies. Many thousands of former US companies have moved into foreign control as a result of the US trade deficit, which is swollen by the offshored production of US corporations.

The policy of chasing lowest labor cost abroad, that is, of pursuing absolute advantage, the antithesis of comparative advantage which is the basis of free trade, is the redirection of US profits, capital gains, rents, interest, parking meter and toll road fees into foreign hands.

Thus, there is a high social cost from corporate executives pursuing short-term profits in order to maximize their performance bonuses. The profits from offshored production are not indications of economic efficiency and social welfare. Most likely, the social costs to the US of offshored production are larger than the profits gained, making jobs offshoring a net loss to the US economy. There is little doubt that the social costs of GMOs exceed the profits of Monsanto.

But don’t expect mainstream economists to pay any attention. They are still waxing eloquently about the advantages of Globalism’s gift of the New Economy of high unemployment and low wages, financial crisis and dollar erosion.


The attack on the 2nd Amendment...

Ex Obama Secret Service Exposes Gun Control Agenda

Anthony Gucciardi

I recently spoke with former Obama Secret Service agent Dan Bongino, who actually left his career to inform the public on the reality behind the gun control debate and campaign for office.

You may know Bongino from his inspiring speech on the subject of how gun control is really not centered around the control of guns, but in fact the control of the individuals who own and carry them. Quite simply, ‘gun control’ is really about people control. A reality that very few talking heads within the gun debate who push for gun control truly understand (or are willing to admit).

Sociopathic control freaks inside government, many of which Bongino is certainly familiar with working deep within Secret Service for Obama, are simply utilizing gun control legislation and regulation to exercise yet more control over the individual with the ultimate goal of eroding the very checks and balances provided by the Constitution and the Bill of Rights at large. But why?

Well, without the rights legally granted by the Constitution, which are actually being illegally bypassed through legislation like the Patriot Act and the NDAA (two pieces of legislation that Obama has signed off on despite voicing opposition to Bush-era creations like the Patriot Act), then bloated government can do virtually anything it pleases. And those at the top of this bloated government system would ultimately stand to gain. We see this throughout history as certain forms of ‘equal’ government are pushed by those at the top who in fact hog the resources for themselves under the guise of government duty and use phony patriotism (or worse) to silence the opposition.


Today, legislation is being written that ignores the Constitution. From gun control and spy bills to internet censorship and tax hikes that fund the mega bankers, we are seeing the Constitution thrown into the fire over and over. But if we truly lose the Second Amendment through a major gun ban, or perhaps the Supreme Court decides it is ‘outdated’, then we are truly setting ourselves up to lose the entire Bill of Rights at large. And until we understand this, the ‘gun debate’ will rage on.

Like Dan, I was never really into firearms until I realized the importance of the Second Amendment when it comes to our rights granted by God and the Constitution. At the end of the day, it’s not really even about the firearm to a large extent.


Don't do it , Rand...

“Conservative” Magazine Counsels Rand Paul to Join the CFR

Joe Wolverton, II, J.D.

Senator Rand Paul (R-Ky.) is currently on his nationwide“I’m probably running for president” tour. He’s made the requisite stops in the early election states of Iowa and New Hampshire, courting the GOP faithful and bringing the figurative freezers full of red meat to throw their way. Demonstrating impressive political savvy, he’s also making a habit of making bold statements that set him apart from potential Establishment competitors from both sides of the aisle.

He may be making the right rounds, shaking the right hands, and firing at the right targets, but if he’s serious about being elected president, Senator Paul should join the Council on Foreign Relations (CFR). At least that is the incredibly bad advice offered by Jacob Heilbrunn to the freshman senator and scion of the libertarian-leaning Paul family.

In an article published on May 19 in The National Interest — a foreign policy journal — senior editor Heilbrunn suggests not only that Paul “put as much distance between himself” and those who consider the CFR and its globalist policies to be a threat to liberty and U.S. sovereignty, but, “for good measure” he should add CFR president Richard N. Haass as a consigliore.

Here’s Heilbrunn’s pitch:

Nothing would signal that Paul intends to be a serious candidate for the presidency [more] than reaching out to mainstream Republicans such as Haass. Haass is the antithesis of a neoconservative, and it is neocons who, by and large, dominate the GOP, at least when it comes to setting the terms of debate. Whether they wield much influence outside it is a matter of debate. But as one of the avatars of shifting the debate on foreign policy, Paul would do well to broaden his message. Obviously, Paul is not going to abandon his libertarian credo. But it’s hardly in conflict with tempering his message for a wider audience. His aim should be to present himself as a mainstream candidate espousing the revival of precepts that were successfully followed by GOP stalwarts such as Dwight Eisenhower, Richard Nixon, Gerald Ford, and George H.W. Bush.

Broaden his message by appealing to the mainstream? That sounds like the none-too-successful strategy of several former GOP presidential contenders.

Beyond shilling for the perpetuation of the same-old-same-old, country club, Establishment partisan politics that have accelerated the decline of this country and its Constitution, Heilbrunn laments that Paul will hew too rigidly to the principles of civil libertarianism that are the essence of his broadening appeal.

And, speaking of that hoary Establishment claque, aren’t they the same group that Senator Paul described as “stale and moss-covered” during a speech at the Conservative Political Action Conference in March?

Undaunted, after extolling Haass’ experience in both Bush (older and younger) administrations, Heilbrunn makes his final appeal to Paul to demonstrate his presidential pragmatism by adopting Haass’ worldview and promoting the CFR’s foreign policy proposals.

Just what is the Council on Foreign Relations? Are they indeed “a secretive organization, the agent of nefarious bankers intent on promoting world government” as Heilbrunn mockingly says “the right” believes them to be?

Or, alternatively, are they, as Heilbrunn claims, a “network of realist thinkers with government experience and serious intellectual attainments”?

In truth, for decades since its creation, the Council on Foreign Relations has been the “mother ship” of the internationalist Establishment and the source of marching orders for the successive State Departments.

Perhaps the best evidence of the influence of this organization was revealed during a speech delivered at CFR headquarters in New York City in 2009, by then-Secretary of State Hillary Clinton. In her remarks, Clinton offered an accurate and chilling assessment of the relationship between the CFR and American foreign policymakers: “We get a lot of advice from the Council, so this will mean I won’t have as far to go to be told what we should be doing and how we should think about the future.”

How prevalent have members of the CFR been in the highest ranks of American politics?

The administrations of every president since Franklin D. Roosevelt have been filled with members of the CFR. From cabinet-level secretaries to the lowest-ranking sub-bureaucrat, presidents have turned to the CFR as the in-house personnel pool.

This path has been faithfully followed by every president — Republican or Democrat — including Barack Obama.

For a full and frightening account of the origin, purposes, and practices of the CFR, readers should turn to James Perloff’s seminal book on the subject, The Shadows of Power: The Council on Foreign Relations and the American Decline. Originally published in 1988, the information provided by Perloff is timeless and timely.

What follows is a brief recitation of Perloff’s account of the inception and influence of the CFR. This synopsis, taken from Perloff’s article “Council on Foreign Relations: Influencing American Government” in the August 3, 2009 issue of The New Americanmagazine, should serve as a primer for readers unfamiliar with the group, as well as a warning to Senator Paul to ignore the advice of Jacob Heilbrunn and anyone else who would see him abandon his constitutional conservatism in favor of the staid, secretive, sovereignty-eroding globalism of the Council on Foreign Relations.

Power Behind the Throne

In theory, America’s government is supposed to be “of the people, by the people, for the people.” While this concept rang true in early America, and many individuals still trust in it, the last century has seen the reality of power increasingly shift from the people to an establishment rooted in banking, Wall Street, and powerful multinational corporations. Syndicated columnist Edith Kermit Roosevelt, granddaughter of Teddy Roosevelt, explained:

The word “Establishment” is a general term for the power elite in international finance, business, the professions and government, largely from the northeast, who wield most of the power regardless of who is in the White House. Most people are unaware of the existence of this “legitimate Mafia.” Yet the power of the Establishment makes itself felt from the professor who seeks a foundation grant, to the candidate for a cabinet post or State Department job. It affects the nation’s policies in almost every area.

Roosevelt added that this group’s goal is “a One World Socialist state governed by ‘experts’ like themselves.” 

David Rockefeller, the longtime chairman (and now chairman emeritus) of the CFR, acknowledged the role of the establishment in trying to lead America in the one-world direction in his 2002 book Memoirs:

For more than a century ideological extremists at either end of the political spectrum have seized upon well-publicized incidents such as my encounter with Castro to attack the Rockefeller family for the inordinate influence they claim we wield over American political and economic institutions. Some even believe we are part of a secret cabal working against the best interests of the United States, characterizing my family and me as “internationalists” and of conspiring with others around the world to build a more integrated global political and economic structure — one world, if you will. If that’s the charge, I stand guilty, and I am proud of it.

Two major means the establishment employs for controlling government policy: (1) through its influence within the two major parties and the mass media, it can usually assure that both the Republican and Democratic presidential candidates will be its own hand-picked men; (2) by stacking presidential cabinets with CFR members at key positions — especially those involving defense, finance, foreign policy, and national security — it can assure that America will move in the direction it wants.

Since the council’s founding in 1921, 21 secretaries of defense or war, 19 secretaries of the treasury, 17 secretaries of state, and 15 CIA directors have hailed from the Council on Foreign Relations.


Prior to the CFR’s founding, what Congressman Charles Lindbergh, Sr. (the father of the famous aviator) called the “Money Trust” — a cabal of international bankers including the houses of Rockefeller, Morgan, and Rothschild — conspired to create the Federal Reserve System. Their agents, such as Paul Warburg and Benjamin Strong, who had secretly planned the Fed at a nine-day meeting on Jekyll Island, were then put in charge of the system itself. This gave them control of American interest rates, and, by virtue of this, control of the stock market, as well as the capacity to have the U.S. government spend without limit by having the Fed create money from nothing. The result has been decades of inflation and skyrocketing national debt. Not just an accumulation of wealth, but a consolidation of political power was involved.

The Money Trust had backed Woodrow Wilson in the presidential elections, and then controlled him through their front man, Edward Mandell House, who lived in the White House. The trust recognized how the power of government could be used to advance their own interests. 

Wilson, surrounded by the bankers, traveled to the Paris Peace Conference of 1919, which was settling the aftermath of World War I.

His chief proposal there, of course, was the League of Nations — a first step toward world government. However, although the League was established by the Versailles Treaty, the United States did not join because the Senate refused to ratify the treaty. 

In response to this rejection, the bankers’ circle, still in Paris, held a series of meetings and proposed to establish a new organization in the United States, whose purpose would be to lead America into the League. This organization was incorporated in New York City two years later as the Council on Foreign Relations.

Architects of a New World Order

The CFR’s goal was formation of an incrementally stronger world government. Admiral Chester Ward, former Judge Advocate of the U.S. Navy, was a CFR member for 16 years before resigning in disgust. He stated: “The main purpose of the Council on Foreign Relations is promoting the disarmament of U.S. sovereignty and national independence, and submergence into an all-powerful one-world government.” 

After World War II, the League’s successor, the United Nations, was born.

Contrary to what the public is commonly told, the UN was not founded by nations who had tired of war. The UN was conceived by a group of CFR members in the State Department calling themselves the Informal Agenda Group. They drafted the original proposal for the UN, and secured the approval of President Roosevelt, who then made establishing the UN his highest postwar priority. When the UN held its founding meeting in San Francisco in 1945, 47 of the American delegates were CFR members.

Though the UN was not initially set up as a world government, the intent was that it would develop into one over time. John Foster Dulles (CFR), an American delegate to the UN founding meeting who later became Secretary of State under Eisenhower, acknowledged as much in his book War or Peace: “The United Nations represents not a final stage in the development of world order, but only a primitive stage. Therefore its primary task is to create the conditions which will make possible a more highly developed organization.”

Again, Perloff’s book The Shadows of Power relates so much more of the destructive effect of CFR influence.

Going forward, one thing is certain, as Perloff wrote in the aforementioned article:

As long as the CFR controls our government, we can anticipate more of the same: diminishing national sovereignty; free flow of immigration (which confuses national identity and weakens national loyalties); increasing jobs losses through multinational trade agreements; further internationalization of law (Law of the Sea Treaty, Kyoto Protocol, World Court, global taxation, etc.); increasing loss of freedoms in a “surveillance society”; progressive organization of the United States, Mexico, and Canada into a North American Union; and ultimately, broader merger into a world government where all power will be concentrated in the hands of the elite.


"Bill Gates, vaccine industry desperately trying to maintain vaccine myth through intimidation..."

Internet monitoring system to stalk social media users who question safety of vaccines

Jonathan Benson

If you post articles to your Facebook wall that warn others about the dangers of vaccines, or Tweet links to the latest studies tying vaccines to autism through Twitter, the vaccine pushers of the world could soon know about it in real time. According to new reports, Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation-backed scientists in both the United States and Great Britain have jointly developed a computerized global monitoring system capable of tracking all social media activity around the world that defies mainstream vaccine dogma, and reporting it directly to authorities.

This brave new exercise in multinational, Big Brother spying is being hailed as a solution to the rapid spread of so-called “rumors” and “lies” about vaccines via the internet, which basically constitute any online free speech that questions the safety or effectiveness of vaccines. According to mainstream authorities, vaccines are completely safe and effective in every way, and anything that defies this unsubstantiated proclamation is now officially considered to be misinformation by the global police state.

According to Heidi Larson from the London School of Hygiene & Tropical Medicine in the U.K., and author of the new tracking system, free speech on the internet has “speeded up the global spread” of what she and others consider to be “unchecked rumors and misinformation about vaccines.” People thinking for themselves, in other words, and discussing legitimate vaccine safety concerns with others online is a threat to the establishment, thus the need for a virtual all-seeing eye, of sorts, to monitor all this chatter and report it directly to health officials.

Bill Gates, vaccine industry desperately trying to maintain vaccine myth through intimidation

The real motivation behind the development of this new tracking tool, of course, is to increase vaccine compliance by intimidating people into silence. Since the Gates Foundation-backed vaccine pushers do not have the capacity to completely prohibit online free speech as it pertains to vaccines (at least not yet), they are instead resorting to underhanded intimidation and manipulation tactics that they hope will give them a new platform to spread their propaganda more quickly and thwart efforts that defy the vaccine status quo.

This is all openly admitted by those who developed the new tracking platform using Gates Foundation funds, and it speaks for itself as to the true intentions of this sadistic cohort. An increasing number of people, for good reason, are avoiding vaccines, as study after study shows them to be toxic and largely ineffective. In fact, vaccines have been shown to be the cause of disease outbreaks, not the solution to them as claimed by Larson and others. So to stem this massive departure, the vaccine industry is seeking new ways to embed itself in the global discussion on vaccines in order to convince more people to get them.

Just in case you were wondering, virtually all of the disease outbreaks in recent years that authorities claim were caused by unvaccinated individuals were actually most prominent among the vaccinated. In other words, the data shows that vaccinated individuals are actually more likely to contract diseases like mumps, measles, and polio than are children who have not been vaccinated, which completely debunks the myths that vaccines “save lives,” and that not getting vaccinated puts one’s health at serious risk.

You can read more about how vaccines do not prevent disease outbreaks by visiting:


Thursday, May 30, 2013

A sign things are getting worse???

Why Is The Smart Money Suddenly Getting Out Of Stocks And Real Estate?

By Michael Snyder

If wonderful times are ahead for U.S. financial markets, then why is so much of the smart money heading for the exits? Does it make sense for insiders to be getting out of stocks and real estate if prices are just going to continue to go up? The Dow is up about 17 percent so far this year, and it just keeps setting new record high after new record high. U.S. home prices have risen about 11 percent from a year ago, and some analysts are projecting that we are on the verge of a brand new housing boom. Why would the smart money want to leave the party when it is just getting started? Well, of course the truth is that the "smart money" is regarded as being smart because they usually make better decisions than other people do. And right now the smart money is screaming that it is time to get out of the markets. For example, the SentimenTrader Smart/Dumb Money Index is now the lowest that it has been in more than two years. The smart money is busy selling even as the dumb money is busy buying. So precisely what does the smart money expect to happen? Are they anticipating a market "correction" or something bigger than that?

Those are very good questions. Unfortunately, the smart money rarely divulges their secrets, so we can only watch what they do. And right now a lot of insiders are making some very interesting moves.

For example, George Soros has been dumping almost all of his financial stocks. The following is from a recent article by Becket Adams...

Everyone’s favorite billionaire investor is back in the spotlight, and this time he has a few people wondering what he’s up to.

George Soros has dumped his position with several major banks including JPMorgan Chase, Capitol One, SunTrust, and Morgan Stanley. He has reduced his exposure to Citigroup and decreased his stake in AIG by two-thirds.

In fact, Soros’ financial stock holdings are down by roughly 80 percent, a massive drop from his position just three months ago, according to SNL Financial.

So exactly what is going on?

Why is Soros doing this?

Well, there is certainly a lot to criticize when it comes to Soros, but you can't really blame him if he is just taking his profits and running. Financial stocks have been on a tremendous run and that run is going to end at some point. Smart investors lock in their profits while they still can.

And without a doubt, stocks have become completely divorced from economic reality in recent months. For example, there is usually a very close relationship between corporate earnings and stock prices. But as CNBC recently reported, that relationship has totally broken down lately...

That trend disrupted a formerly symbiotic relationship between earnings and stock prices and is indicating that the bluechip average is in for a substantial pullback, according to Tom Kee, who runs the StockTradersDaily investor web site.

"They've been moving in tandem since 2009, until recently. Earnings per share for the Dow Jones industrial average have flatlined and the price has taken off," Kee said. "There is something happening here that defines a bubble."

At some point there will be a correction. If the relationship between earnings and stock prices was where it should be, the Dow would be around 13,500 right now. That would be a fall of nearly 2,000 points from where it is at the moment.

And we appear to be entering a time when revenues at many corporate giants are actually declining. As I noted in a previous article, corporate revenues are falling at Wal-Mart, Proctor and Gamble, Starbucks, AT&T, Safeway, American Express and IBM.

Of course a stock market "correction" can turn into a crash very easily. Financial markets in Japan are already crashing, and many fear that the escalating problems in the third largest economy on the planet will soon spill over into Europe and North America.

And things in Europe just continue to get steadily worse. In fact, the New York Times is reporting that the European Central Bank is warning that the risk of a "renewed banking crisis" in Europe is rising...

The European Central Bank warned on Wednesday that the euro zone’s slumping economy and a surge in problem loans were raising the risk of a renewed banking crisis, even as overall stress in the region’s financial markets had receded.

In a sober assessment of the state of the zone’s financial system, the E.C.B. said that a prolonged recession had made it harder for many borrowers to repay their loans, burdening banks that had still not finished repairing the damage caused by the 2008 financial crisis.

And there are many financial analysts out there that are warning that their cyclical indicators have peaked and that we are on the verge of a fresh global downturn...

“We see building evidence of a cyclical downturn,” said Fredrik Nerbrand, HSBC’s global asset guru. “We find it highly troubling that the eurozone is still marred in a recession at the same time as our cyclical indicators appear to have peaked.”

In the United States, a lot of the smart money has also decided that it is time to bail out of the housing market before this latest housing bubble bursts. The following is one example of this phenomenon that was discussed in a recent Businessweek article...

Hedge fund manager Bruce Rose was among the first investors to coax institutional money into the mom and pop business of single-family home rentals, raising $450 million last year from Oaktree Capital Group LLC.

Now, with house prices climbing at the fastest pace in seven years and investors swamping the rental market, Rose says it no longer makes sense to be a buyer.

“We just don’t see the returns there that are adequate to incentivize us to continue to invest,” Rose, 55, chief executive officer of Carrington Holding Co. LLC, said in an interview at his Aliso Viejo, California office. “There’s a lot of -- bluntly -- stupid money that jumped into the trade without any infrastructure, without any real capabilities and a kind of build-it-as-you-go mentality that we think is somewhat irresponsible.”

So what does all of this mean?

Is there a reason why the smart money is suddenly getting out of stocks and real estate?

It could just be that the insiders are simply responding to market dynamics and that many of them are just seeking to lock in their profits.

Or it could be something much more than that.

What do you think?

Why are so many insiders heading for the exits right now?

Feel free to post a comment with your thoughts below...


"The federal government is increasingly labeling military veterans as “potential domestic terrorists” if they express viewpoints that are critical of the government."

25 Signs That Military Veterans Are Being Treated Like Absolute Trash Under The Obama Administration

By Michael Snyder

Why does the Obama administration treat our military veterans like human garbage? Every year on Memorial Day and Veterans Day, Barack Obama and our other politicians make very nice speeches, but the truth about how they feel about our veterans can be seen in how they are treated every single day. In the United States today, there are well over half a million veterans that have been waiting for at least 125 days to have their benefit claims processed. Many of them will ultimately have their claims sent back or denied just so a government employee somewhere can get a bigger bonus. Meanwhile, conditions at VA facilities all over the country are absolutely abysmal, and many veterans have to wait more than half a year just to get an appointment at one of those facilities. Once you start looking into how this country really treats military veterans, it becomes easier to understand why 22 military veterans commit suicide in America every single day. Our vets have a higher rate of unemployment, a higher rate of poverty, a higher rate of homelessness, a higher rate of depression and a higher rate of divorce then the general population. It is a crying shame. One of the ways that any society is judged is by how it treats military veterans, and the truth is that America has failed miserably. This has been particularly true since Barack Obama has been in the White House.

The following are 25 signs that military veterans are being treated like absolute trash under the Obama administration…

1. The average claim for veteran benefits takes more than half a year to be processed.

2. The Department of Veterans Affairs has a backlog of more than half a million overdue claims for benefits that are at least 125 days old.

3. In 2009, the number of veterans that had been waiting for more than a year to have their benefits approved was 11,000. Today, that number has soared to 245,000.

4. Thousands upon thousands of military veterans that are waiting for their claims to be processed are dealing with absolutely horrible injuries…

Of those who have sought VA care:

• More than 1,600 of them lost a limb; many others lost fingers or toes.

• At least 156 are blind, and thousands of others have impaired vision.

• More than 177,000 have hearing loss, and more than 350,000 report tinnitus — noise or ringing in the ears.

• Thousands are disfigured, as many as 200 of them so badly that they may need face transplants. One-quarter of battlefield injuries requiring evacuation included wounds to the face or jaw, one study found.

5. At one VA hospital in Wisconsin, one military veteran with a broken jaw that was seeking treatment still had not had his jaw fixed after a month and a half.

6. Today, it takes military vets an average of seven months to get an appointment at a VA facility.

7. Many VA facilities are in absolutely horrific condition. A while back, ABC News conducted an investigation of conditions at VA facilities across the United States. What ABC News discovered was absolutely shocking. The following are just a few of the things that they found during the course of their investigation…

*Bathrooms filthy with what appeared to be human excrement

*Dirty linens from some patients mixed in with clean supplies

*Examining tables that had dried blood and medications still on them

*Equipment used to sterilize surgical instruments that had broken down

*Some patients were forced to beg for food and water

*Veterans that were neglected so badly that they developed horrific bedsores and dangerous infections

8. As I have written about previously, applying for veteran benefits is extremely complicated, and VA employees are actually paid bonuses for denying claims…

The truth is that we have made it extremely difficult for our military veterans to claim the benefits that we have promised them. Vets have to fill out an absurdly complicated 23 page application and if they make even one small mistake their applications can be stonewalled for years. The U.S. Veterans Administration actually has a policy under which they pay large bonuses to employees that meet certain application processing goals. This explains why approximately 70% of the claims submitted to the Veterans Administration are refused or sent back to be redone. In fact, using the Freedom of Information Act, one local NBC station was able to learn that $250,000 was paid in bonuses to VA employees who work inside the Poff Federal Building in Roanoke, Virginia in just one year alone.

9. Large numbers of military veterans that legitimately should be getting benefits are having their claims denied by the federal government. Just check out the following example from a Veterans Today article…

In one case, we found a veteran with 40 percent of his brain removed found to be healthy and employable. He was also missing his right arm. The physician who examined him over looked the arm and failed to note the cognitive degeneration the traumatic brain injury had caused.

10. Last year, more than 85,000 military veterans were treated for sexual abuse that they suffered while serving in the military. 40 percent of them were men.

11. According to a recent Defense Department survey, approximately 14,000 men in the U.S. military were sexually assaulted by other men during 2012.

12. According to the Washington Post, there is an epidemic of sexual assaults being committed by military recruiters. The Pentagon is pledging to do something about the problem…

“The secretary has made it clear that we will spare no effort to rid our military of sexual abuse,” said George Little, the Pentagon press secretary. “The fact that there have been problems of sexual abuse during the recruiting process is simply intolerable.”

13. The number of active members of the U.S. military that are killing themselves now exceeds the number that are dying on the battlefield.

14. Since the beginning of the Iraq War, twice as many members of the Texas National Guard have killed themselves as have been killed in combat.

15. According to one recent study, 22 military veterans kill themselves in the United States every single day.

16. At this point, combat veterans account for about 20 percent of all suicides in the United States.

17. The unemployment rate for military veterans is significantly higher than for the population as a whole. This is especially true for younger veterans.

18. On any given night, approximately 200,000 military veterans are homeless in the United States.

19. All over America, monuments that honor military veterans are crumbling and falling apart. For much more on this, please see this article.

20. Under the Obama administration, many military veterans have had to pay to have their medals shipped to them. For example, one soldier actually had to pay a 21 dollar shipping fee to get his Purple Heart. The following is from the Huffington Post…

War comes with an incalculable human cost. And apparently a shipping fee of about $21.

Retired Sgt. Major Rob Dickerson says that’s the price he was forced to pay when his Purple Heart — the medal issued to soldiers wounded in action — arrived at his door, C.O.D.

Instead of being awarded the military honor in a formal ceremony, the vet with 29 years in the service was handed his award, and a shipping invoice, by a FedEx deliveryman outside his Sioux Falls, S.D., home.

21. In some areas of the country the U.S. Department of Veterans Affairs has been caught banning the words “God” and “Jesus” during funeral services for veterans.

22. Today, the federal government provides “end of life” literature to veterans that helps them to determine when their lives are “no longer worth living“…

“Your Life, Your Choices” presents end-of-life choices in a way aimed at steering users toward predetermined conclusions, much like a political “push poll.” For example, a worksheet on page 21 lists various scenarios and asks users to then decide whether their own life would be “not worth living.”

The circumstances listed include ones common among the elderly and disabled: living in a nursing home, being in a wheelchair and not being able to “shake the blues.” There is a section which provocatively asks, “Have you ever heard anyone say, ‘If I’m a vegetable, pull the plug’?” There also are guilt-inducing scenarios such as “I can no longer contribute to my family’s well being,” “I am a severe financial burden on my family” and that the vet’s situation “causes severe emotional burden for my family.”When the government can steer vulnerable individuals to conclude for themselves that life is not worth living, who needs a death panel?

23. One study discovered that approximately one-third of all military veterans returning from Afghanistan and Iraq were officially determined to be mentally ill by government officials.

24. All over America, “mental illness” is being used as a reason to take guns away from military veterans.

25. The federal government is increasingly labeling military veterans as “potential domestic terrorists” if they express viewpoints that are critical of the government. The following is from a recent article by John Whitehead…

Making matters worse, thanks to Operation Vigilant Eagle, a program launched by the Department of Homeland Security in 2009, military veterans returning from Iraq and Afghanistan are also being characterized as extremists and potential domestic terrorist threats because they may be “disgruntled, disillusioned or suffering from the psychological effects of war.” As a result, these servicemen and women–many of whom are decorated–are finding themselves under surveillance, threatened with incarceration or involuntary commitment, or arrested, all for daring to voice their concerns about the alarming state of our union and the erosion of our freedoms.

An important point to consider, however, is that the government is not merely targeting individuals who are voicing their discontent so much as it is locking up individuals trained in military warfare who are voicing feelings of discontent. Under the guise of mental-health treatment and with the complicity of government psychiatrists and law-enforcement officials, these veterans are increasingly being portrayed as ticking time bombs in need of intervention.

Are you upset yet?

You should be.

The way that the federal government is treating military veterans is absolutely shameful.

Do you have a story that illustrates how our military veterans are being abused?

If so, please feel free to share it by posting a comment below…


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"The fish that will be arriving around now, and in the coming months, to California waters may be carrying considerably more radioactivity and if so they may possibly be a public health hazard."

“Absolutely Every One” Bluefin Tuna Tested In California Waters Contaminated with Fukushima Radiation

California Fish Contaminated with Fukushima Radiation

Washington's Blog

We noted more than a year ago:

The ocean currents head from Japan to the West Coast of the U.S.


Of course, fish don’t necessarily stay still, either. For example, the Telegraph notes that scientists tagged a bluefin tuna and found that it crossed between Japan and the West Coast three times in 600 days:

That might be extreme, but the point is that fish exposed to radiation somewhere out in the ocean might end up in U.S. waters.

And see this.

CNN reports today:

Low levels of radioactive cesium from Japan’s Fukushima Daiichi nuclear accident turned up in fish caught off California in 2011, researchers reported Monday.

The bluefin spawn off Japan, and many migrate across the Pacific Ocean. Tissue samples taken from 15 bluefin caught in August, five months after the meltdowns at Fukushima Daiichi, all contained reactor byproducts cesium-134 and cesium-137 at levels that produced radiation about 3% higher than natural background sources

The Wall Street Journal quotes the studies’ authors:

“The tuna packaged it up and brought it across the world’s largest ocean,” said marine ecologist Daniel Madigan at Stanford University, who led the study team. “We were definitely surprised to see it at all and even more surprised to see it in every one we measured.”


“We found that absolutely every one of them had comparable concentrations of cesium-134 and cesium-137,” said marine biologist Nicholas Fisher at Stony Brook University in New York state, who was part of the study group.

The bad news is that it is only going to get worse.

As Reuters points out:

Unlike some other compounds, radioactive cesium does not quickly sink to the sea bottom but remains dispersed in the water column, from the surface to the ocean floor.

Fish can swim right through it, ingesting it through their gills, by taking in seawater or by eating organisms that have already taken it in ….

As CNN notes:

Neither [of the scientists who tested the fish] thought they were likely to find cesium at all, they said. And since the fish tested were born about a year before the disaster, “This year’s fish are going to be really interesting,” Madigan said.

“There were fish born around the time of the accident, and those are the ones showing up in California right now,” he said. “Those have been, for the most part, swimming around in those contaminated waters their whole lives.”

In other words, the 15 fish tested were only exposed to radiation for a short time. But bluefin arriving in California now will have been exposed to the Fukushima radiation for much longer.

As KGTV San Diego explains:

The real test of how radioactivity affects tuna populations comes this summer when researchers planned to repeat the study with a larger number of samples. Bluefin tuna that journeyed last year were exposed to radiation for about a month. The upcoming travelers have been swimming in radioactive waters for a longer period. How this will affect concentrations of contamination remains to be seen.

One of the studies’ authors told the BBC:

The fish that will be arriving around now, and in the coming months, to California waters may be carrying considerably more radioactivity and if so they may possibly be a public health hazard.

Japanese and U.S. officials – of course – are pretending that the amount of radiation found in the bluefin is safe. But the overwhelming scientific consensus is that there is no safe level of radiation … and radiation consumed and taken into the body is much more dangerous than background radiation.