American Samizdat

Thursday, November 29, 2007. *
What if we have already been "rounded up?"
The pragmatism of a dystopian present-tense.

It seems reasonable to me that politically aware people would be waxing dystopian lately. We're witnessing bizarre and regular shocks to our collective pysche...

  • The Katrina Massacre (a city overtaken by paramilitary thugs, mass death and random imprisonment/police violence

  • police brutality at shutting down mass demonstrations (such as the LAPD Immigration rally melee)

  • tasering civilians practicing free speech in a university setting

  • Grand jury subpoenas IP addresses of alt-newsweekly readership


Given these abuses, it's only normal to air our anxiety about what happens next. We worry for our kids: what sort of world they are inheriting? We want to fix it. Instead of paranoid "fantasies," I see worried "parents" are getting over their fear of what happens next and entering a "strategy" phase, as Naomi Klein hopefully posits in The Shock Doctrine:
when the shock starts to wear off, we can get down to the business of making life better.

So, it's with alarm and puzzlement, that "worst case scenario" discussions often attract heated debate as to whether or not the worst could really happen "here." Some people seem personally invested in the notion that nothing that bad could ever happen here. Their posts are peppered with tinfoily hats and eyeroll icons. I guess the desire is to claim a moral or intellectual high ground, as if there's an upside to ignoring creeping authoritarianism. Is there a real-world upside to ignoring the temperature rising under our amphibious butts?

I'm puzzled by this response, because, as I see it, no one loses when ideas are freely discussed. If no worse case scenario happens, well, yea. In the meantime, why wouldn't you "reality check" and strategize?

Setting this aside for a moment, I think it's significant that our discussions are evolving from mere anxiety to strategizing. Might we be seeing the light at the end of the tunnel, if we are no longer afraid to answer these questions?

I'm going to assert that our worst case scenarios HAVE ALREADY HAPPENED. Consider New Orleans in the wake of the levee failures and the paramilitary takeover.

Doesn't it seem like we had a worst case scenario there? For all the people who died in their attics, or lost their homes, or are forever poisoned from the environment, it doesn't get any worse.

The narrative that has captured our imagination and generated controversy is the "good german" myth, where rights are diminished to the point of non-existence, while everyone looks on. We imagine that we'll know when "it's fascism" by the presence of government troops and concentration camps. But, the founders of this country imagined a different worse case scenario -- tyranny in the form oligarchy and theocracy. Our laws and Constitution were written to protect the people from the concentration of wealth and political power. Who here can say that we are not yet danger regarding these threats? Who here can say that economic and political power haven't ALREADY slipped from our grasp?

What if the shit hit the fan a long time ago and we're not noticing it because we've grown accustomed to the constant stream of poo covering our cultural landscape? "Good german" scenarios warn against the loss of freedom. So, can someone please tell me what freedom it is that you are afraid of losing? Can you put that "freedom" in plain sight so that we can guard it more carefully? Because, think we have basic misunderstanding. The Good German Syndrome is the fear of complicity in the face of loss of freedom. I think our problem is more serious and talk about "freedom" is meaningless. Our problem is that we've lost our POWER, not our FREEDOM.

Our problem is that we've lost our POWER, not our FREEDOM.

We can speak all we want. We can speak in "free speech zones." We can speak if we don't mind being tasered. We can march in mass demonstrations if we aren't too afraid of being caught in the middle of a melee. We can post on DU, as long as we don't mind that the telecomms are keeping track of everything we say. We have freedom of movement as long as we don't mind cavity searches if we show up on a secret "no-fly" list.

We have freedom-in-quotation-marks in spades.

The problem is we have no power to be heard because our government has no interest in speech that doesn't come in an envelope with a large donation.

We have no power to be heard.

Does money equal speech, as the Supreme Court will likely rule 5-to-4 for the rest of our lifetimes? If corporations enjoy "freedom of speech" via money (which I have very little of), then, how likely is it that my speech will be heard?

Earlier this week, Democratic leader Nancy Pelosi lamented her inability to arrest those exercising free speech outside her Bay Area mansion. Do you think, if those wishing to be heard, came bearing giant corporporate donations, that they'd be outside building buddahs? No, they'd be inside being heard. Forget about having the power to compete against the deafening ka-ching of lobbyist checks being cashed. We no longer even have the commodious tolerance for speech (even in San Francisco!), by our so-called Democratic leadership. Were that we were homeless, indeed.

Freedom is nothing without POWER, and we're starting to realize just how vulnerable this has made us. Discussing "what if" and "worst case" scenarios is a response to our loss of power. It makes perfect sense to take inventory of our assets and formulate a response in the face of another, larger, deeper catastrophe -- such as the "World War 3" Bush says is "worth starting" in Iran.

I think we've already been "rounded up." We're fed-up, and we're not going to take it anymore. Our discussions at this point are about REGAINING POWER -- not pre-empting a disaster.

We have already been "rounded up."




To be fair, all of this stuff has been going on for 120+ years in America -- the labor wars and Farm Holiday movements and strikebusters and Pinkertons and concentration camps for socialists, to mention just a few bright moments in American History, make today's America look tame by comparison. And when I say "tame," I mostly mean the level of dissent.

Actually, when you take into consideration such horrors as the slavery of Africans, the genocide of the Native tribes and the crushing of early anarchist and anti-tax crusades such as the Whiskey Rebellion, there was *never* a time when America was "free." This country was simply less oppressive and less class-anchored than the grim starvation of post-serfdom Industrial Revolution Europe.

I had a moment of clarity a few weeks ago, reading some histories of the Great Depression and the wild fever of socialist revolution throughout urban Canada and the USA: It suddenly became clear why the communist witch hunts of the McCarthy era happened. It was because we were *this close* to socialist revolution in America in the 1930s.

Jesus, there were foreclosed farmers showing up with NOOSES at the courthouse, to hang the judges. Working people read all the Red papers, which were distributed across the country by working people riding the boxcars. Rural men -- today's loyal "conservatives" -- would disarm sheriffs and Pinkertons, sometimes violently. Scabs working the ports were literally stomped to death by union men. Millionaires (today's billionaires) would flee to walled compounds while their private armies fought the workers.

Goddamn. People used to have a *spine.* Now, the people are fat and dull, obedient to a dead god, obedient to aristocrats and kleptocrats, retarded by Pavlovian responses to things they don't even comprehend: socialism, left, anarchism, communism, revolution.

You want keyword hijinx that matter? "Red" was the proudest thing a North American worker could claim, just a century ago. Now, if the anti-union service worker with $30K in credit card debt and a foreclosed tract home even knows what "Red" means, he's against it.

Worse to come, so says Dante.
posted by Uncle $cam at 10:35 PM
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From the Huffington Post:

Harman's bill contends that the United States will soon have to deal with home grown terrorists and that something must be done to anticipate and neutralize the problem. The act deals with the issue through the creation of a congressional commission that will be empowered to hold hearings, conduct investigations, and designate various groups as "homegrown terrorists." The commission will be tasked to propose new legislation that will enable the government to take punitive action against both the groups and the individuals who are affiliated with them. Like Joe McCarthy and HUAC in the past, the commission will travel around the United States and hold hearings to find the terrorists and root them out. Unlike inquiries in the past where the activity was carried out collectively, the act establishing the Violent Radicalization and Homegrown Terrorism Prevention Commission will empower all the members on the commission to arrange hearings, obtain testimony, and even to administer oaths to witnesses, meaning that multiple hearings could be running simultaneously in various parts of the country. The ten commission members will be selected for their "expertise," though most will be appointed by Congress itself and will reflect the usual political interests. They will be paid for their duties at the senior executive pay scale level and will have staffs and consultants to assist them. Harman's bill does not spell out terrorist behavior and leaves it up to the Commission itself to identify what is terrorism and what isn't. Language inserted in the act does partially define "homegrown terrorism" as "planning" or "threatening" to use force to promote a political objective, meaning that just thinking about doing something could be enough to merit the terrorist label. The act also describes "violent radicalization" as the promotion of an "extremist belief system" without attempting to define "extremist."
As should be clear from the vagueness of the definitions, the Violent Radicalization and Homegrown Terrorism Prevention Act could easily be abused to define any group that is pressuring the political system as "terrorist," ranging from polygamists, to second amendment rights supporters, anti-abortion protesters, anti-tax agitators, immigration activists, and peace demonstrators. In reality, of course, it will be primarily directed against Muslims and Muslim organizations. Given that, there is the question of who will select which groups will be investigated by the roving commissions. There is no evidence to suggest that there will be any transparent or objective screening process. Through their proven access both to the media and to Congress, the agenda will undoubtedly be shaped by the usual players including David Horowitz, Daniel Pipes, Steve Emerson, and Frank Gaffney who see a terrorist hiding under every rock, particularly if the rock is concealing a Muslim. They and their associates will undoubtedly find plenty of terrorists and radical groups to investigate. Many of the suspects will inevitably be "anti-American" professors at various universities and also groups of Palestinians organized against the Israeli occupation, but it will be easily to use the commission formula to sweep them all in for examination.

And if you're not scared yet go watch this Naomi Wolf clip (posted by Uncle Scam). One comment about that clip: the dems have shown no willingness to hold effective hearings or oversight. Its part of a strategy that, oddly enough, would seem to reward the Republican Party by blurring the distinctions. I suppose, if you supported the Iraqi War as a proxy war for Israel, and you were a member of the DNC, these kinds of things could be considered as a thank you. I suppose.

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posted by Philip Shropshire at 9:07 PM
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You can go vote here. Although it would be nice if Progressives had, you know, a party that represents them.

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posted by Philip Shropshire at 8:44 PM
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I have to admit. This second describes my life fairly well, but I will fight back...

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posted by Philip Shropshire at 8:37 PM
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Wednesday, November 28, 2007. *
Last July, President Bush issued a broadly-worded executive order authorizing the government to seize the assets of "any person" who threatens the stability of Iraq and, more controversially, any person who provides assistance to such a person.

The scope, objectives and precedents of the order -- Executive Order 13,438, "Blocking Property of Certain Persons Who Threaten Stabilization Efforts in Iraq" -- were examined in a new report from the Congressional Research Service.

"The broad language of this executive order has been the subject of a degree of criticism as potentially reaching beyond insurgents in Iraq to third parties, such as U.S. citizens, who may unknowingly be providing support for the insurgency," the CRS report noted, citing prior reports in the Washington Post, TPM Muckraker, and elsewhere.

In fact, the potential application of the order appears to be technically unlimited since it includes a recursive clause that has no defined endpoint.

Thus, section 1(b) of the Order states that any person who provides goods or services to a person whose actions are proscribed under section 1(a) is himself subject to section 1(a). But then, anyone who provides similar support to that person could likewise be swept up in the expansive terms of the order. And so on, without end.

In practice, the application of the order will be defined by implementing regulations to be issued by the Treasury Department's Office of Foreign Assets Control, which will also prepare an initial list of blocked individuals and organizations. Those have still not been published.

A copy of the new CRS report was obtained by Secrecy News.

See, Executive Order 13,438: Blocking Property of Certain Persons Who Threaten Stabilization Efforts in Iraq (pdf). November 16, 2007.


Also see, my post below.
posted by Uncle $cam at 10:22 AM
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[ Politicized ] Bush DOJ attempts subpoena for list of 24,000 Amazon customers

"The (subpoena's) chilling effect on expressive e-commerce would frost keyboards across America. Well-founded or not, rumors of an Orwellian federal criminal investigation into the reading habits of Amazon's customers could frighten countless potential customers into canceling planned online book purchases," the judge wrote in a ruling he unsealed last week.
~U.S. Magistrate Judge Stephen Crocker



Interesting story on how this came to light, far more interesting is, wondering what other nefarious things are going on under cover of NSL's (National Security Letters).


Also see,
In Hunt for Terrorists, Bureau Examines Records of Ordinary Americans

NSLs....Since the Washington Post was nice enough to create an excellent graphical summary of Barton Gellman's front page story about the skyrocketing use of "National Security Letters," I'm going to reproduce it here instead of writing my own summary. When you're done reading it, be sure to read the whole story above.

(Note: Click to enlarge).
posted by Uncle $cam at 1:45 AM
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Sunday, November 25, 2007. *
Israel will begin to gradually reduce the amount of electricity supplies to Gaza starting from Dec .2 in its latest hostile action against Hamas.

Human rights groups have denounced Israel's policy of cutting back on utilities to Gaza, calling it collective punishment.

Israel has generally closed off Gaza since Hamas took power in June 2006, following a massive election victory in January of that year. Several weeks ago Israel also began cutting back on fuel supplies.

Two Israeli groups that press for Israel to respect Palestinian human rights, Gisha and Adala, issued a statement Thursday charging that the proposed electricity cuts would ''cause certain and serious harm to the health and well-being of Gaza residents.

The UN has also warned of 'dire consequences' of the decision.
posted by Klintron at 1:32 PM
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Saturday, November 24, 2007. *
CBS News: FBI Foreknowledge of 1993 WTC bombing


So dear reader, if they knew last time (93)and let it happen, why would they have any qualms about letting it happen again in 01?

Sibel Edmonds Case: the untellable story of AIPAC.

Last week, former FBI translator Sibel Edmonds, announced that she was willing to tell everything that she knows if any of the major networks are willing to give her airtime, without airbrushing the essence of her case. Bradblog will have an update on the progress, or lack of it, next week.

Of course, Sibel would prefer to testify under oath in congress, but apparently our Democratic Congresscritters (I'm looking at you, Waxman) don't care about the treason, bribery, and corruption that has hijacked US foreign policy.

Meanwhile, last week we learnt that the judge in the AIPAC case has allowed subpoenas to be issued to 15 current and former high-level officials. Many of us are excited about the prospect of the trial - but Sibel assures us that the case, as it stands, is just the tip of the iceberg.

'AIPAC' is at the core of Sibel's case, and Sibel’s story needs to be heard - either in Congress, or in the media.


No wonder gatekeeper kos is so well entrenched in mediocrity. It has a cadre of covert spy support network on call 24/7.

Israel backed by army of cyber-soldiers in propaganda war on

Israel backed by army of cyber-soldiers

Israel’s Government has thrown its weight behind efforts by supporters to counter what it believes to be negative bias and a tide of pro-Arab propaganda. The Foreign Ministry has ordered trainee diplomats to track websites and chatrooms so that networks of US and European groups with hundreds of thousands of Jewish activists can place supportive messages.




Oh, and it has just come to my attention why the Sibel Edmonds/Val Plame Wilson case will never ever go anywhere, because, Waxman is an AIPAC member.

Either Blackmail's a bitch ... or "AIPAC Amnesia".

Are we looking at why Impeachment is "off the table"?

I fear for her.

I Remember an article a while back --I'll try to find it-- where Bush gave the Mossad "extrajudicial assasinations" power via 'executive privilege' to hunt down and kill anyone they consider terrorist or detrimental to their National Security ON THE STREETS OF AMERICA. Surely she has this written down or filmed someplace, with a "disseminate upon my death" request on it.

Which is why Waxman won't touch this one w/ a 10' pole. The DNC leadership wants this one stored under the table where they're currently storing impeachment.

Hmmm...There are more troops in Iraq than before, the WH blithely ignores subpoenas, Edmonds can't get before a Cong committee, and nobody's trying to stop Cheney from bombing Iran. What exactly was the point of the 2006 elections?

Waxman, 'Duel citizenship' Rahm Emanuel, Barney Frank, 'Give em head' Harry Reid, 'no impeachment' Nancy Pelosi, should all be waterboarded until such a time as it becomes illegal, AGAIN.


Ahhh, here it is, Israel to kill [kidnap]in U.S., allied nations

Israel is embarking upon a more aggressive approach to the war on terror that will include staging targeted killings in the United States and other friendly countries, former Israeli intelligence officials told United Press International.
posted by Uncle $cam at 5:22 PM
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Apparently, the Catholic League is telling people to stay away from the "Golden Compass". So every atheist needs to shell out 8 buck and go watch the "Golden Compass". Plus, it looks like a good movie. I mean, I watched the Chronicles. Its just an interesting imaginary story, Bill. Just like the Bible...


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posted by Philip Shropshire at 3:42 PM
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As Zimbabwe descends into anarchy and chaos, land is irrationally seized from productive farmers, we are told. President Robert Mugabe of Zimbabwe is portrayed as a dictator bent on driving his nation into starvation and economic disaster while benevolent U.S. and British leaders call for democracy and human rights. These are the images presented by Western news reports, intended to persuade the public to support an interventionist policy. As always when the West targets a foreign leader for removal, news reports ignore complexity and context, while the real motivations for intervention remain hidden. Concern for democracy and human rights is selective and it is always the nation that displays too much independence that evokes concern, even in cases of a functioning multiparty system and wide ranging media. On the other hand, no one calls for democracy and human rights in oppressive nations as long as the political environment is conducive to Western investment. Saudi Arabia, for example, holds no elections and imposes an abusive oppression on the lives of its women. The pattern is consistent. Any nation that embarks on a path diverging from Western corporate interests and places the needs of its people over the demands of Western capital finds itself the target of destabilization, sanctions and intervention. History and context are essential for understanding political events, and it is precisely these aspects that are lacking in Western news reports.


Of course, no one wants to talk about the politics of Africa. But if they did, it would look like this:

The Language of Empire
posted by Uncle $cam at 7:52 AM
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Boston Police Go Door to Door to Search for Guns


Warrentless police coercion to try to find guns in kid's bedrooms. You know exactly what will happen, If you got nothing to hide you will let us search your kids bedroom. Intimidation at it's worst.

If you got nothing to hide...


Gun Confiscation: Coming To a City Near You!!!
posted by Uncle $cam at 1:25 AM
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Thursday, November 22, 2007. *

Actually, I probably won't buy anything because I don't have any money but this is a nice effort.

From Adbusters:

Action update: MTV, the channel that markets itself to hip youth, has decreed that our Buy Nothing Day public service spot "goes further than we are willing to accept on our channels". Gangsta rap and sexualized, semi-naked school girls are okay, but apparently not a burping pig talking about consumption.

(Here's the ad that MTV, which I long stopped watching because they don't play music. Sort of like my jazz channel that won't play any jazz...I truly hate you Reginald Hudlin. On the other hand, if not for your slashing mediocrity I wouldn't have created this. Life hands you a lemon...)


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posted by Philip Shropshire at 7:55 PM
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Fun fact: It was John Mclaughlin who got Jeff Beck into jazz rock. Beck started recording instrumental jazz rock right after he saw the legendary central park concert with the Mahavishnu Orchestra. It was sort of referenced in This is Spinal Tap when the band went down its jazz rock path...And the winner is: Jeff Beck's hot bassist Tal Wilkenfeld...

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posted by Philip Shropshire at 7:43 PM
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I think that guy below in that white outfit is our very own Uncle Scam! Could be.

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posted by Philip Shropshire at 6:50 PM
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See if you can connect the dots ...
Regional and Global Consequences of U.S. Military Action in Iran

By Ilan Berman, American Foreign Policy Council

Statement before the U.S. House of Representatives Committee on Oversight and Government Reform Subcommittee on National Security and Foreign Affairs

Ilan Berman, Vice President for Policy, American Foreign Policy Council

November 14, 2007

Chairman Tierney, Congressman Shays, distinguished members of the Subcommittee:

Thank you for the opportunity to appear before you today to address the current crisis with Iran, and the potential of military action against the Iranian regime.

Today, the United States and its allies are fast approaching a fateful choice. After years of intensive work, the Islamic Republic's nuclear program is mature-and approaching operational capability. According to recent European estimates, as well as the assertions of regime officials themselves, Iran is now operating some 3,000 uranium enrichment centrifuges, placing it just one year away from producing enough fissile material for one nuclear weapon.[1] Soon, therefore, Washington will need to choose, as French President Nicolas Sarkozy has put it, between "Iran with the bomb or the bombing of Iran."[2]

...


...

Let us be clear. There are no easy answers to the current conflict with Iran, only hard choices. A compelling case can be made that, at least for the moment, Iran's nuclear ambitions can be curbed, contained and even derailed through non-military measures such as a robust, coordinated economic warfare strategy.[9] The time for such "non-kinetic" approaches, however, is rapidly running out. As Iran draws closer to the nuclear threshold, the use of force-unpalatable as it is-will loom ever larger on the horizon. This is only logical. For, as Senator John McCain succinctly explained last year, "there's only one thing worse than the United States exercising the military option; that is a nuclear-armed Iran."[10]

--
The Mystery of Minot: Loose nukes and a cluster of dead airmen raise troubling questions
by Dave Lindorff

Wed, 11/21/2007—The unauthorized Aug. 29 cross-country flight of a B-52H Stratofortress armed with six nuclear-tipped AGM-29 Advanced Cruise missiles, which saw these 150-kiloton warheads go missing for 36 hours, has all the elements of two Hollywood movies.

...



...

The American Conservative has discovered that to date, more than a month after the incident, Pentagon investigators have completely ignored a peculiar cluster of six deaths, during the weeks immediately preceding and following the flight, of personnel at the two Air Force bases involved in the incident and Air Force Commando Operations headquarters.

--

"The reported problems with procedures and record keeping follows an incident in August when a B-52 bomber was mistakenly armed with six nuclear-tipped cruise missiles and flown to a Louisiana airbase. [beside an international seaport]

The mission from Minot Air Force Base in North Dakota was to ferry cruise missiles that had been slated for decommissioning but the warheads were supposed to have been removed beforehand." [as well as the fuel, so clearly these were deliberately live.]

[SNAFUBAR. SAC doesn't do decommissioning, the AF has a Cargo Command for that.]

The Air Force disciplined some 70 airmen. [and apparently terminated six of them.]



police and medical examiners in the Frueh and Blue cases say no federal investigators, whether from DOD or FBI, have called them. Worse still, because the B-52 incident got so little media attention—no coverage in most local news—none of those investigating the accidents and suicides even knew about it or about the other deaths.

“It would have been interesting to know all that when I was examining Mr. Blue’s body,” says coroner Mike Stoker, “but no one told me about any of it or asked me about him.”

“If we had known that several people had died under questionable circumstances, it might have affected how we’d look at a body,” says Don Phillips, the sheriff’s deputy who investigated the Frueh death. “But nobody from the federal government has ever contacted us about this.”

“Certainly, in a case like this, the suicides should be a red flag,” says Hans Kristensen, a nuclear-affairs expert with the Federation of American Scientists. It’s wild speculation to think that there might be some connection between the deaths and the incident, but it certainly should be investigated.”


if it had been thoroughly debunked one would assume all coroners would have been contacted by the feds, they weren't.

Frueh, 33, a married father of two who had just received approval for promotion from captain to major, reportedly flew from Florida to Portland, Oregon, for a friend’s wedding. He never showed up. Instead, he called on Aug. 29, the day the missiles were loaded, from an interstate pull-off just outside Portland to say he was going for a hike in a park nearby. (It is not clear why he was at a highway rest stop as he had no car.) A day later, back in Portland, he rented a car at the airport, again calling his family. After he failed to appear at the wedding, his family filed a missing person’s report with the Portland police. The Sheriff’s Department in remote Skamania County, Washington, found Frueh’s rental car ten days later on the side of a road nearly 120 miles from the airport in a remote area of Badger Peak. Search dogs found his body in the woods. His death was ruled a suicide, though neither the sheriff’s investigator nor the medical examiner would give details. What makes this alleged suicide odd, however, is that the sheriff reports that Frueh had with him a knapsack containing a GPS locator and a videocam—odd equipment for someone intent on ending his life.


one would assume all coroners would have been contacted by the feds, they weren't.


actually, i don't know this. The article was first published in the Oct. 22, 2007 issue of American Conservative magazine. They could have been contacted since then. [but I doubt it].

Give thanks, and remember, God Bless America!*



*You know, America, as in the elite, not you or I....

Fuck anyone else.

Note: The above Inspired by Janet Reno's 'Song of America'.
posted by Uncle $cam at 6:39 AM
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Wednesday, November 21, 2007. *
Happy Thanksgiving...unless you happen to be a sponsored authoritarian thug on a state, local or federal level. In that case, kindly choke to death on your stuffing.



Also see, Man in diabetic coma tasered twice
posted by Uncle $cam at 11:17 PM
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Interview with Naomi Wolf, author of End of America
posted by Uncle $cam at 9:41 AM
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The Gospel According to Philip K. Dick

This is a clip from my second feature, The Gospel According to Philip K. Dick. The movie features interviews with many people who knew Dick personally, including Robert Anton Wilson. This is currently available on DVD from First Run Features.
posted by Uncle $cam at 9:25 AM
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Tuesday, November 20, 2007. *
Internet groupthink and the hive-mind...

Interesting interview with Adam Curtis (The Century of the Self ,The Power Of Nightmares and The Trap ) on the register.The interview covers topics such as the snake oil salesmen of the internet's "new democracy". It is quite long so i will only post a short extract here, but i recommend reading the complete article.

It's interesting how people are responding to this infinite abundance of information, and they seem to respond by going to what's familiar and what looks ordered. And the groupthink you get on the internet that you see in these 'blogrolls' is a very seductive world. All the reference points you need are there, people are familiar and known, and people fall into this rabbit hole. I guess it's not surprising - when there are suddenly a million routes home, you choose the one most familiar to you. It's an off-the-shelf belief system.

At a time when there isn't anything to give you confidence beyond yourself - you live in the "empire of the self" - then it is inevitable that you will seek those like you, because it will give you a sense of collective purpose. It will give you a sense of collective security.

And that's exactly what the internet is about - "If you like this book, others before you have bought these books..." And it works to create those little circles. All those little radio stations which tell you, "If you played this, other people have played this..."
posted by Uncle $cam at 9:33 PM
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Terrorism: Terrorism is violence, or the threat of violence, calculated to create an atmosphere of fear and alarm. These acts are designed to coerce others into actions they would not otherwise undertake, or refrain from actions they desired to take. All terrorist acts are crimes. Many would also be violation of the rules of war if a state of war existed. This violence or threat of violence is generally directed against civilian targets. The motives of all terrorists are political, and terrorist actions are generally carried out in a way that will achieve maximum publicity. Unlike other criminal acts, terrorists often claim credit for their acts. Finally, terrorist acts are intended to produce effects beyond the immediate physical damage of the cause, having long-term psychological repercussions on a particular target audience. The fear created by terrorists may be intended to cause people to exaggerate the strengths of the terrorist and the importance of the cause, to provoke governmental overreaction, todiscourage dissent, or simply to intimidate and thereby enforce compliance with their demands.


their glossary makes no account for "state terrorism", by far the greatest source/scale of terrorism incidents throughout the world, though there is an entry for "state-sponsored terrorism", though not the same thing.

state violence & threats of violence, of course, are not considered illegitimate or "off the table."

Also, Occupation breeds terror*...

When I first moved to this country, I was prepared to play my part by enlisting in the IDF and serving in the West Bank. While there, I saw for myself the effect my mere uniformed presence had on the Palestinians I encountered on a daily basis. Every interaction took place with me holding all the cards - it was me with the loaded gun in my hands; it was me barking instructions to "stop or I'll shoot", "lift up your shirt", "don't come another step closer"; it was me playing with my quarry as though they were puppets on the end of short, taut strings.
...
The unspoken truth that every Israeli knows, uncomfortable as it may be to admit, is that occupation breeds terror. Every incursion, every raid, every curfew and collective punishment, drives the moderates into the welcoming arms of the militants, who promise to return their honour and their wounded pride by fighting the oppressors' fire with fire of their own. And that fact alone should be enough to shake Israelis awake and realise that the occupation has to end, as much for our own security as for the sake of the Palestinians that we're subjugating.
...


Occupation breeds terror?...

Really? Interesting, wonder why that is ?... Doh!

Basra Violence Down 90 Percent.
posted by Uncle $cam at 7:17 PM
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FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE: November 19, 2007

McCAIN GENERIC FOOD LEGISLATION PASSES FULL SENATE

Lower cost generic food plan now part of Medicare Reform bill

WASHINGTON - The U.S. Senate today voted to include an amendment, introduced by Senator John McCain (R-AZ) and Senator Judd Gregg (R-NH),
Chairman of the Senate Health, Education, Labor and Pensions Committee to make more affordable generic foods available to more people more
quickly, tied to provisions in the Engrossed Senate Medicare bill amendment.

"This amendment is a victory not just for seniors, but for every person in American who has ever eaten expensive imported foods. We have
crafted legislation that eliminates the careful preparation, seasoning and curing tactics some name brand foreign food companies have used
in the past to keep lower cost generic foods off the top shelves and away from consumers who can't stoop. At the same time, we protect
innovation and preserve the incentive for American food companies to invest in research and development,” said Senator Judd Gregg.

Presidential contender Sen. John McCain on Saturday called for the reimportation of generic foods stuff from overseas and US military
warehouses as a way to bring American food costs under control. The Arizona Republican, speaking to reporters about a mile from the
Canadian border and just across the river from New Hampshire, said high food prices account for too much of the cost of feeding a family.

"Millions of pounds of American generic foods are sitting on shelves overseas, just out of reach of the American consumer. Famous US brand
names like Wonder Bread, Velveeta and Spam are approaching their pull dates, hidden on lower shelves in some French-speaking foreign country.
I call on all Americans to join me in demanding reimportation of unsold generic American food, and for Federal Farm subsidies to compensate
grocers for product placement and 50's-style homemaker ads, so that Americans can once again enjoy the foods (sic) that made America famous."

[Photo of Senator McCain speaking: ]

Summary of the Gregg-McCain Greater Access to Generic Bio-Industrial Foodstuffs Amendment (GAG-BIFA):

Current US generic food laws were designed to strike a balance between rewarding hand-crafted traditional food companies for their careful
preparation and presentation while ensuring that less expensive generic foods are available to consumers. But in the years since these laws
were enacted, the namebrand foreign food industry has stifled low-cost competition with a host of tactics - including filling sausages with
real meat and natural ingredients, instead of Advanced Meat Recovery slurry paste and artificial flavors and colors, or preparing cheese by
hand from fresh cow's milk, blocking, wrapping and curing them over months in underground cellars, instead of generic GMO solvent-extract
hydrogenated vegetable oils and artificial colors and flavors hauled directly to local package plants in 18-wheel tank trucks. In so doing,
these so-called "natural" or "organic" tactics allow foreign namebrand companies to keep charging exorbitant prices and terrorize US citizens
by delaying the arrival of lower-cost industrial foodstuff alternatives to the American supermarkets.

These tactics have caused food prices to soar (although inflation remains well in hand at a modest 0.3%) and forced the gap between the cost
of brand name foods and their generic alternatives to skyrocket in the last three years. In 2000, the average cost for a picnic basket of
natural meats, breads and cheeses was $12.80, while the average cost for generic foods was $10.20. By 2005, the last year such data was recorded,
the average cost for a picnic basket of natural meats, breads and cheeses reached $65.29, while the generic foodstuffs increased to only $19.33.

Last summer, the Senate passed legislation sponsored by Schumer and McCain that significantly overhauled the FDA generic food program. For
the individual, that legislation would have meant hundreds of dollars in savings on food costs per year.

The Gregg-McCain proposal would achieve comparable savings to the original Schumer-McCain measure, but uses a different approach to modify
the import laws. In so doing, it addresses a number of the criticisms made against Schumer-McCain. The key elements of the Gregg-McCain
proposal are as follows:

1) One 30 Month Quarantine - The name-brand foreign food company would have to keep imported foodstuffs in quarantine at the dock for at
least a 30 Month stay. The stay would be triggered if a name-brand company chooses to import under it's own label, instead of through an
American bio-pharmaceutical major. Each batch of imported foreign foodstuffs must make an import appeal to the FDA for infringing on any
good-taste or happy-meal claims or any food market sector already staked out, top shelved and belonging by right to an American major.

Once an imported natural foodstuffs application is filed, the name-brand foreign company has 45 days to challenge the generic American
food company in court. If the name-brand does not challenge the generic industrial food company's market dominance within 45 days, the
generic manufacturer can seek a declaratory judgement stripping the name-brand food product from American supermarket shelves.

(It usually takes the FDA 18 to 25 months to approve a lot of imported foodstuffs, more than sufficient time for it to rot on the dock.)

2) ReImportation - The Gregg-McCain plan does not specify which natural imports can be listed in the FDA's Code Orange Alert Book. To
ensure that the name-brand companies do not use frivolous healthy ingredients to keep generic industrial foodstuffs off the market,
the proposal would create a new Federal enforcement mechanism, the SPAM squad (like SWAT law enforcement, dressed in orange jump suits).

Gregg-Schumer would allow generic foodstuffs companies to file counter-claims if a name-brand foreign company sues them for market share
and shelf placement. For example, if a name-brand foreigner files a frivolous lawsuit and sues a generic industrial foodstuff manufacturer
for using normal GOOBER top-shelf monopolizing kickback schemes to assure product exclusivity in supermarkets, the generic US company can
counter-sue the foreign name-brand and argue that their ingredients are too easy to pronounce, and don't have healthy food preservatives.

3) MediCare Happy Meals Subsidies - Chief among the strategies for ensuring continued dominance of red-blooded American foodstuffs on the
American food shelves, is a rider on the amendment that pays MediCare a premium for reimbursing nursing homes for using only US generic
industrial foodstuffs in their meal programs. Funds for this reimbursement program are hidden in the Bush-McCain Defense ReAppropriation Bill.


Fnord!...lol
posted by Uncle $cam at 2:57 AM
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Monday, November 19, 2007. *
A friend emails me a story from USA Today about a 24-year-old college graduate who testified before Congress about her family of immigrants and the difficulties they face; shortly afterward, the entire family was arrested by immigration agents. Another online piece reports that Blackwater is setting up operations along the US/Mexico border and an insightful post on Daily Kos describes how the TSA list will revert from the airlines to the management of the Department of Homeland Security shortly and that by February we may well face the need to apply to the State for permission to travel. If this proposed regulation goes through, we will move from 1931 to about 1934 - when the borders started to close - with the stroke of a pen. Jews in America have hardwired into their DNA a sense of the distinction between those who got out before the borders closed and those who waited a moment too long.

[Article continues at link. Convincing. - Trevor Blake]

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posted by Trevor at 10:11 PM
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Operators of free food banks say they are seeing more working people needing assistance. The increased demand is outstripping supplies and forcing many pantries and food banks to cut portions.

Demand is being driven up by rising costs of food, housing, utilities, health care and gasoline, while food manufacturers, wholesalers and retailers are finding they have less surplus food to donate and government help has decreased, according to Lisa Hamler-Fugitt, executive director of the Ohio Association of Second Harvest Foodbanks.


Wait! Wasn't Bushco's faith based initiative incentive and Community Initiatives for church's across the nation to step up and help the public sector in area's such as this? Not to mention, that I personally hate the fixed ideal that you are supposed to help the less fortunate one or two goddamn days out of the year, the rest of the year they can starve. But it seems to me these drives to help people during the bullshit market driven holidays is nothing more than giving the guilty a guilt free holiday, so they can enjoy their affluence in peace on that day by saying, hey, 'I gave'.

Oh, and one last thing, thanks Bush: The Evangelical Christian Takeover of the Military
posted by Uncle $cam at 2:01 PM
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Sunday, November 18, 2007. *


The entire monstrosity online above.
Official website
Here's a review:
AMONG a small group of very smart people, the publication of ''A New Kind of Science,'' by Stephen Wolfram, has been anticipated with the anxiety aroused in literary circles by, say, Jonathan Franzen's recent novel, ''The Corrections.'' For more than a decade, Wolfram, a theoretical physicist turned millionaire software entrepreneur, has been laboring in solitude on a work that, he has promised, will change the way we see the world. Adding to the suspense, the book has been announced and withdrawn as the artist returned to his garret to tinker, ignoring the bad vibes and hexes cast by jealous colleagues hoping to see him fall flat on his face.

Now, weighing in at 1,263 pages (counting a long, unpaginated index)
and 583,313 words, the book could hardly be more intimidating. But
that is the price one pays for a first-class intellectual thrill.
While experimenting with a simple computer program 20 years ago,
Wolfram stumbled on something rather eerie: ''the beginning of a crack
in the very foundations of existing science.'' Ever since, he has been
following it deeper as it widens into a crevasse.

The normal thing would have been to dispatch regular reports from the
field -- unreadable papers published in fashionable zines like
Physical Review Letters or Physica D. Instead, Wolfram decided to do
what Darwin did (and he would not shun the comparison). He is
springing loose his vision all at once, in a book intended for
nonscientists and scientists alike.

From the very beginning of this meticulously constructed manifesto,
the reader is presented with a stunning proposal: all the science we
know will be demolished and reassembled. An ancient error will be
corrected, one so profoundly misguided that it has led science down
the wrong avenue, until it is approaching a cul-de-sac. The mistake
(as everyone who hated calculus will be happy to hear) is trying to
capture the richness of the universe with mathematical equations --
Newton's, Maxwell's, Einstein's. All are based on an abstract, perhaps
dubious idea -- that time and space form a seamless continuum. Whether
dealing with an inch or a second, you can chop it in half and the half
in half, ad infinitum. Thus things can be described with unlimited,
infinitesimal precision.

This conceit works fine for simple phenomena like a planet's
trajectory around the sun or a weight falling from the Leaning Tower
of Pisa. But as scientists try to explain systems of greater
complexity -- a hurricane, the economy of Portugal, a human or even a
reptilian brain -- the calculations become ever more elaborate until
one is left with an unwieldy array of symbols that do not explain much
at all.

Wolfram believes that even his own field, theoretical physics (he got
a Ph.D. from Caltech when he was 20), suffers from the problem.
Equations can capture characteristics of individual particles with
breathtaking precision. But put three or four particles together and
the complications begin to overwhelm. The problem, he proposes, is
that equations are the wrong tool for the job. They should be replaced
with computer programs -- more specifically, the little snippets of
software called algorithms.

That sounds absolutely ridiculous. Programs are just human inventions,
marching orders for a machine. They serve well as a quick and dirty
means of tricking a computer into approximating the smoothness of
nature, roughing out reasonably good facsimiles of a scientist's
perfect equations. But computers understand nothing but 1 or 0, with
no gradations in between. Algorithms can mimic reality's grain as
finely as the engineers can manage, but the simulation can never be as
sharp as the real thing.

Wolfram contends that this, the common wisdom, gets things upside
down: the algorithm is the pure, elemental expression of nature; the
equation is an artifice. That is because the continuum is a fiction.
Time doesn't flow, it ticks. Space is not a surface but a grid. A
world like this is best described not by equations but by simple step-
by-step procedures. By computer programs.


Welcome the the machine matrix weird?...



John Horgan and George Johnson bring up this exact subject HERE:Chaos Theory They even link to the article above.



"You Know That Space-Time Thing? Never Mind"...lol
posted by Uncle $cam at 11:13 PM
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Hurricane Katrina, eh? Mother Nature's a racist!

Analysts had said the race could set a baseline for the changing political landscape in a post-Hurricane Katrina city in which the gap between white and black voters is narrowing.


No shit? Hey, while we are on the subject of redistricting, by any means necessary, what ever happened to the Indicted Hammer? You know, the criminally indicted former House Majority Leader Tom DeLay, the bugmanhammer or some shit, remember him?

Roll Call:

The trial is on hold while a court decides whether some charges can be re-filed. He's not claiming he's innocent of the campaign finance conspiracy charge against him. He's claiming the law wasn't in effect when the conspiracy occurred.



Now that New Orleans has had a demographic makeover, the budgetary "floodgates" have been opened:
Redistricting Tom DeLay

Back on topic, The Management and Manipulation of Crises: Accumulation by dispossession David Harvey author of The Urban Experience. He speaks on city landscape, hegemony, territorial logic, private property, land ownership, systemic gentrification among other things. In particular, his new work entitled, 'The New Imperialism' goes further and speaks on economic accumulation by dispossession.and re estate repossession.

'The New Imperialism': ON SPATIO-TEMPORAL FIXES AND ACCUMULATION BY DISPOSSESSION
posted by Uncle $cam at 3:44 AM
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Saturday, November 17, 2007. *
Hushmail and DEA have an "MLAT" ("Mutual Legal Assistance Treaty")?

Interestingly enough, according to wikipedia, the United States and Caribbean nations "MLAT" laws do not cover U.S. tax evasion, and are therefore ineffective when applied to Caribbean countries,...imagine my shock. So much for seizing terrorist funds, just like the highly lucrative war on "some" drugs, the Bushcult terrorist kabuki war 2.0 or GWOT, in actuality is a war on "some"
terrorists. Folly the C -Notes as they say...

Just like how Yahoo CEO's were more than happy to help send journalist/reporter Shi Tao to hard labor in a Chinese prison along with Wang Xiaoning a Chinese dissident calling for democratic reform and an end to single-party rule merely to protect their bottom line.

Yahoo Officials Defend Role in Chinese Journalist Jailing
Two top officials with the internet giant Yahoo were called before Congress Tuesday to testify on their role in the jailing of a Chinese journalist. Shi Tao was sentenced to ten years after Yahoo passed on his email and internet protocol address to Chinese officials. Speaking before the House Foreign Affairs Committee, Yahoo CEO Jerry Yang and General Counsel Michael Callahan defended Yahoo’s role. Shi Tao’s mother was sitting in the room. At the urging of Congressmember Tom Lantos, Yang and Callahan bowed their heads to her in apology. Lantos told the pair: “While technologically and financially you are giants, morally you are pygmies.”


Finally, And what was not public at the time of Callahan’s testimony (but was presumably known by Yahoo! execs like him) was that, prior to the Shi Tao investigation, Chinese police had requested (and were given) information about at least three other dissidents in clearly-identified “subversion” cases — much less ambiguous in their targeting of political dissidents. (See this post for more details.) In other words, the Shi Tao request was not made in a vacuum: in addition to not having “no information” about that particular investigation, Yahoo! also cannot claim to have “no information” about the other investigations into dissident activity that preceded it. Fucking liars.
posted by Uncle $cam at 11:08 PM
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Friday, November 16, 2007. *
Just a mere spy, that's all. One of how many that have infiltrated our agencies? Ho hum.

Ex-FBI [CIA] Employee's Case Raises New Security Concerns, writes the Whorepost Washington post.

News outlets are abuzz with the news of the guilty plea of Nada Nadim Prouty.

Despite fraudulently acquiring her citizenship and having close familial ties to Hezbollah, Prouty was able to pass background checks for both the CIA and the FBI.


New Security Concerns? New Security Concerns?

And boy does it...there is much more here than the sham media is telling, follow me deep into the rabbit hole, where all things are possible, even before breakfast...

Enter: Sibel Edmonds Sibel Edmonds Case: New (and old) revelations of spying at the FBI. You owe it to yourself to spend a little time on this one, dig in and see for yourself how deep the shit is, here's a little taste:

lost in translation
now go read Lukery. Then come back and watch:












Oh, and while I'm here, here's another slap in the face you should check into...

Krongard (Sec of State) Investigator of Blackwater just found out his Brother was ON the ADVISORY BOARD of... Blackwater Get it? hahahaha... the corpse of America and the corruption stench is becoming to much, it's seeping out. Ever smelled a gutted carcass? No wonder spy's are becoming ubiquitous, with a system like this...
posted by Uncle $cam at 6:07 AM
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Thursday, November 15, 2007. *

By MANOHLA DARGIS
New York Times, November 14, 2007

[excerpt]

American cinema is in the grip of a kind of moribund academicism, which helps explain why a fastidiously polished film like “No Country for Old Men” can receive such gushing praise from critics. “Southland Tales” isn’t as smooth and tightly tuned as “No Country,” a film I admire with few reservations. Even so, I would rather watch a young filmmaker like Mr. Kelly reach beyond the obvious, push past his and the audience’s comfort zones, than follow the example of the Coens and elegantly art-direct yet one more murder for your viewing pleasure and mine [When I saw the preview in the theater, I asked my freind, "and I should care why?" -- ed.]. Certainly “Southland Tales” has more ideas, visual and intellectual, in a single scene than most American independent films have in their entirety, though that perhaps goes without saying.

Neither disaster nor masterpiece, “Southland Tales” again confirms that Mr. Kelly, who made a startling feature debut with “Donnie Darko,” is one of the bright lights of his filmmaking generation. He doesn’t make it easy to love his new film, which turns and twists and at times threatens to disappear down the rabbit hole of his obsessions. Happily, it never does, which allows you to share in his unabashed joy in filmmaking as well as in his fury about the times. Only an American who loves his country as much as Mr. Kelly does could blow it to smithereens and then piece it together with help from the Rock, Buffy, Mr. Timberlake and a clutch of professional wisenheimers. He does want to give peace a chance, seriously.

more

Southland Tales opens tomorrow in select cities
posted by Bruce at 9:56 AM
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Andre underground.


More than the nostalgic 70's narcissistic, self-improvement psychobabble. People often get the wrong idea about this film. Its not all about psychobabble or New Age self absorbtion, Andre himself expresses some problems with that later in the film. Its all about a balanced dialogue where the truth lies in between two ideological contrasts.
posted by Uncle $cam at 8:24 AM
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Wednesday, November 14, 2007. *
One would do well, to drink in Isaiah Berlin's advise of the coming political cataclysm of the West and it starts with Merica, The New America. If only to remember what could have been. Our garden has become toxic. Why do I have Pat Travers slash crash and burn in my head as sound track to the new stillborn republic? Can we slash and burn? Start over agin, reset, do over, remix Westphalia? "Optimism"? hardly...

this comes from a discussion of machiavelli by Isaiah Berlin
and is one of the best essays on power and the state that i have ever read

Some thought that there was a single end for all men in all circumstances, or different ends for men of different kinds or in dissimilar historical environments.
Objectivists and universalists were opposed by relativists and subjectivists, metaphysicians by empiricists, theists by atheists.
There was profound disagreement about moral issues; but what none of these thinkers, not even the Skeptics, had suggested was that there might exist ends—ends in themselves in terms of which alone everything else was justified—which were equally ultimate, but incompatible with one another, that there might exist no single universal overarching standard that would enable a man to choose rationally between them.
posted by Uncle $cam at 10:16 PM
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Interesting speech on some Bush Jr. innovations in how NOT to prosecute corporate crime. Completely new topics to me were the new DOJ approaches of

• non prosecution agreements
• deferred prosecution agreement
• prosecution of closet or defunct entities


very clever how the deferred or closeted prosecution not only can, but has, kept ALL health insurers from ever being subject to mandatory exclusion from government contracts when they defraud Medicare. Nice!

an excerpt:
Number 12
Corporations love non prosecution agreements even more.

One Friday evening last July, I was sitting my office in the National Press Building. And into my e-mail box came a press release from the Justice Department.

The press release announced that Boeing will pay a $50 million criminal penalty and $615 million in civil penalties to resolve federal claims relating to the company's hiring of the former Air Force acquisitions chief Darleen A. Druyun, by its then CFO, Michael Sears – and stealing sensitive procurement information.

So, the company pays a criminal penalty. And I figure, okay if they paid a criminal penalty, they must have pled guilty.

No, they did not plead guilty.

Okay, they must have been charged with a crime and had the prosecution deferred.

No, they were not charged with a crime and did not have the prosecution deferred.

About a week later, after pounding the Justice Department for an answer as to what happened to Boeing, they sent over something called a non prosecution agreement.

That is where the Justice Department says – we’re going to fine you criminally, but hey, we don’t want to cost you any government business, so sign this agreement. It says we won’t prosecute you if you pay the fine and change your ways.

Corporate criminals love non prosecution agreements. No criminal charge. No criminal record. No guilty plea. Just pay the fine and leave.


Rawk! On!

Further Calvinist Proof of Divine Election (not that it was in doubt). Of course, the dems will save us!
posted by Uncle $cam at 12:51 PM
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Tuesday, November 13, 2007. *

I'm making a call: I think John Edwards is the best choice for the presidency. I like Obama and I think he would make a very capable president or vice president but his vote for that Peruvian free trade deal, the scare talk on social security...of course, he might think Hillary has wrapped it up and thinks this secures his rich guy money base back in Illinois but still...I would probably vote for Hillary but this would be the first election cycle in four years where I probably won't do any door to door work for the dems if she gets the nomination...Unless the GOP nominee is Tanc or Newt or somebody....

I just can't stand that "lobbyists is people" line, which, appropriately enough, was turned into an ad by the Edwards camp. Seen here in the "Oops. Our Bad" ad:

Ted Rall also has the anti Hillary analysis down:

I forgive easily. I could have let Hillary off the hook for supporting NAFTA, screwing up healthcare in 1993 and voting for the proto-fascist USA-Patriot Act. I could have overlooked her Reaganesque cluelessness about the lives of ordinary people. (Reneging on her "baby bond" proposal that Americans receive $5,000 at age 18, she now wants to give everyone a 401(k) and have the government match it "up to $1,000." Thanks to this windfall, she says, "they will be able to access it to go to college or maybe they will be able to make that down payment on their first home." Lame idea, obviously. What I want to know is: Where can you buy a house or a college education for $1000? On the moon?)

I might have even have forgiven Hillary's vote to authorize Bush to start the unprovoked war against Iraq, though she never apologized for a cowardly (and miscalculated) act of triangulation that contributed to the deaths of more than a million Iraqis. As Tim Grieve wrote in Salon: "She has gone from 1) voting for the use-of-force resolution, to 2) questioning the intelligence that formed the basis of that vote, to 3) arguing that the Bush administration distorted the intelligence, to 4) saying she didn't regret giving Bush authority to use force but did regret the way he used that authority, to 5) saying the resolution never would have come to a vote if Congress knew then what it knows now, to 6) saying that Congress wouldn't have voted for the resolution if Congress knew then what it knows now, to 7) saying that she wouldn't have voted for the resolution if she knew then what she knows now."

Hillary's October 2003 speech to the Senate is a fair summary of her defense: "The idea of giving our president authority to act...against Saddam Hussein, was one I could support and I did so. In the last year, however, I have been first perplexed, then surprised, then amazed, and even outraged and always frustrated by the implementation of the authority given the president by this Congress." Good idea, fouled up by hyper-aggression and lousy implementation. Well, what did she expect? Bush was a warmonger, a liar who'd already attacked Afghanistan, where Osama wasn't, and sucked up to Pakistan, where he was, after 9/11. She gave him a blank check. She can't have been surprised when he cashed it.

As I said, I'm the forgiving type. I get it: Hillary can't apologize for her Iraq vote. It would make her look weak. As she said in September 2006 on ABC News, "I can only look at what I knew at the time because I don't think you get do-overs in life. I think you have to take responsibility. And hopefully, learn from it and go forward. I regret very much the way the president used the authority he was given because I think he misled the Congress, and he misled the country."

Except...except...she did get a do-over. The same president who misled her, Congress and the country, asked for her vote on yet another resolution based on phony intelligence that starts us down the path to war--this time against Iran. She had a chance to prove that she'd learned her lesson. She voted yes. Again.

President Hillary won't close Gitmo. She won't stop torturing. She won't stop listening to our phone calls. She won't stop the war in Iraq, much less in Afghanistan. Heck, she might even start a new one.

Fool you once, shame on Bush. Fool you twice, I stop thinking how cool it would be for the United States to finally elect a woman president.

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posted by Philip Shropshire at 10:34 PM
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An excerpt:

A superhero killed the president this summer. Moments later, a shocked White House press corps watched as John Horus, his gleaming white-and-gold costume still soaked in blood, explained why. Because "the war in Iraq is illegal and predicated on lies," because "our people and theirs are dying for corporate gain," because of the "use of torture by our elected authorities," and because the president "stole the last two elections," the most powerful member of the Seven Guns could no longer "stand by while this administration commits crimes." In response, a terrified government imposed martial law, launching a nationwide manhunt for Horus' estranged teammates, whose reactions to the act ranged from horror to sympathy.

I'm supposed to be doing an annotation of that speech for Amsat if I ever get it finished...

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posted by Philip Shropshire at 10:26 PM
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Monday, November 12, 2007. *
Fascism Made Easy: Naomi Wolf
posted by Uncle $cam at 10:06 PM
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Johnathan Goodwin can get 100 mpg out of a Lincoln Continental, cut emissions by 80%, and double the horsepower. Does the car business have the guts to follow him?


Of course not, they'll prolly have him killed though...

One engineer turned and said, "GM said this wouldn't work."

"Well," Goodwin replied, "here it is."
posted by Uncle $cam at 9:29 PM
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Trevor Blake: Charles Grassley
Sen. Charles Grassley (R-IA) has asked six non-profit agencies to account for their earnings. These six agencies are led by Paula White, Joyce Meyer, Creflo Dollar, Eddie Long, Kenneth Copeland and Benny Hinn. Sen. Grassley has no legal means to compel these six to account for their earnings. That is because these agencies serve an invisible monster that lives in the sky.

Secular non-profit agencies are accountable for how much money they take in and what they used that money for. By providing social services in the private sector they lessen the burden of the government to provide those services. By reducing the burden of the government to provide those services they reduce the amount of tax the government can justify taking in. By reducing the amount of tax the government can justify taking in the secular non-profit agencies are awarded with tax exempt status. Secular non-profit agencies are accountable for how much money they take in (to determine how much tax they can be exempt from) and what they used that money for (to demonstrate they relieved the burden of the state).

Superstitious non-profit agencies are also tax exempt, but they are not accountable for how much money they take in nor are they accountable for what they spend the money on. Some superstitious non-profit agencies must surely do good work with every penny they can find. But others surely do not.

The ideal and simple solution would be to get the government out of the superstition business (as suggested by the First Amendment to the Constitution of the United States of America). Hold superstitious non-profit agencies accountable to the same standards as secular non-profit agencies. Require superstitious non-profit agencies to account for how much money they take in and what they spend it on. Where they do good work, let them be rewarded. Leave magic spells offered to an invisible monster that lives in the sky up to individuals and families.

I welcome Sen. Grassley's inquiry. He and those like him might benefit from my January 2006 essay The Case Against Tax Exemption for Religious Organizations in Oregon in OVO 16 Anti-Christ. "At every turn in its thought, society will find us - waiting."

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posted by Trevor at 8:26 AM
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Sunday, November 11, 2007. *
First the Chinese show they can shoot a satellite in outer space

Then we see that Chinese oil interests is one of the culprits for the Darfur genocide

then they show they can poison millions of toys on American storeshelves with poison and GHB

then they got Canada to not show a documentary exposing falsely rounding up Falun Gong to use as organ harvesters

NOW...
American military chiefs have been left dumbstruck by an undetected Chinese submarine popping up at the heart of a recent Pacific exercise and close to the vast U.S.S. Kitty Hawk - a 1,000ft supercarrier with 4,500 personnel on board.

By the time it surfaced the 160ft Song Class diesel-electric attack submarine is understood to have sailed within viable range for launching torpedoes or missiles at the carrier.

According to senior Nato officials the incident caused consternation in the U.S. Navy.

The Americans had no idea China's fast-growing submarine fleet had reached such a level of sophistication, or that it posed such a threat.

One Nato figure said the effect was "as big a shock as the Russians launching Sputnik" - a reference to the Soviet Union's first orbiting satellite in 1957 which marked the start of the space age.
posted by Uncle $cam at 12:48 AM
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Saturday, November 10, 2007. *
Seven months after an airman was burned in a test of the nonlethal heat beam, the Air Force has released a heavily redacted version of the mishap report (available in PDF here) that reveals few details about what happened.

The military has bent over backwards to demonstrate to the public that the Active Denial System (ADS), a millimeter wave directed energy weapon that heats up the top layer of skin, is a well-tested nonlethal weapon, and not a scary microwave weapon with unknown health effects. For example, last month, they staged demonstrations of ADS for reporters at Quantico.


Also, Puke Ray: Coming Soon to a City Near You

And when you puke on a cop, they taser your ass.
posted by Uncle $cam at 12:15 PM
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Fletcher, who can be belligerent, told a caseworker to go away. But instead of leaving, the worker called the police, and officers treated Fletcher like she was a criminal.


This is what civilians don't understand. There are no longer any constitutional rights when dealing with agencies. A caseworker, CPS, building inspector, city inspector, dog catcher, paramedic, or any AGENT of governmental agencies is technically now a form of cop and you are basically under arrest or detention as soon as they engage you. If you resist, properly equipped agents will be summoned or notified, and if these properly equipped agents show up, then you have to submit. If you don't submit, then they are cleared to make you submit via force continuum up to and including your death. The caseworker is just the first tier of force continuum in this case.

What would be interesting to note is if the caseworker was there because of some contract, such as welfare, that ms Fletcher engaged in, or whether the caseworker was summoned by a third party...in any case the article hints that Fletcher and this caseworker had dealings before...


Should cops have Tasered an 82-year-old?

Sixty-three percent responded no.

But 37 percent, or 2,940 people voted yes -- Lillian Fletcher, the elderly and mentally-ill grandmother who was Tasered by police who burst into her home, should have been Tasered because she was wielding a hammer.
posted by Uncle $cam at 11:58 AM
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Yeah, yeah, don't believe it? Watch the report.

Left side, sixth video down, or watch it below before they take it down...






Here's the print:

SHREVEPORT, LA
CHEMTRAILS: Is U.S. Gov't. Secretly Testing Americans 'Again'?

Posted: Nov 9, 2007 07:46 PM EST

Updated: Nov 9, 2007 07:50 PM EST

Could a strange substance found by an Ark-La-Tex man be part of secret government testing program? That's the question at the heart of a phenomenon called "Chemtrails." In a KSLA News 12 investigation, Reporter Jeff Ferrell shows us the results of testing we had done about what's in our skies.
"It seemed like some mornings it was just criss-crossing the whole sky. It was just like a giant checkerboard," described Bill Nichols. He snapped several photos of the strange clouds from his home in Stamps, in southwest Arkansas. Nichols said these unusual clouds begin as normal contrails from a jet engine. But unlike normal contrails, these do 'not' fade away.
Soon after a recent episode he saw particles in the air. "We'd see it drop to the ground in a haze," added Nichols. He then noticed the material collecting on the ground.
"This is water and stuff that I collected in bowls. I had it sitting out in my backyard in my dad's pick-up truck," said Nichols as he handed us a mason jar in the KSLA News 12 parking lot back in September after driving down from Arkansas.


KSLA News 12 had the sample tested at a lab. The results: A high level of barium, 6.8 parts per million, (ppm). That's more than three times the toxic level set by the Environmental Protection Agency, or EPA.
Armed with these lab results about the high levels of barium found in our sample, we decided to contact the Louisiana Department of Environmental Quality. They told us that, 'yes,' these levels are very unusual. But at the same time they added the caveat that proving the source is a whole 'nother matter.

We discovered during our investigation that Barium is a hallmark of other chemtrail testing. This phenomenon even attracted the attention of a Los Angeles network affiliate, which aired a report entitled, "Toxic Sky?"


There's already no shortage of unclassified weather modification programs[*] by the government. But those who fear chemtrails could be secret biological and chemical testing on the public point to the 1977 U.S. Senate hearings which confirmed 239 populated areas had been contaminated with biological agents between 1949 and 1969. Later, the 1994 Rockefeller Report concluded hundreds of thousands of military personnel were also subjected to secret biological experiments over the last 60-years.

But could secret testing be underway yet again? "I'd rather it be something inert and you know something that's not causing any damage but I'd like to know what it is," concluded Nichols.


KSLA News 12 discovered chemtrails are even mentioned by name in the initial draft of HR 2977 back in 2001, under the Space Preservation Act. But the military denies any such program exists.
It turns out, until just nine years ago the government had the right, under U.S. law, to conduct secret testing on the American public, under specific conditions. Only a public outcry repealed part of that law, with some "exceptions."

Mark Ryan, Director of the Poison Control Center, explained that short term exposure to barium can lead to anything from stomach to chest pains, with long-term exposure causing blood pressure problems.
Ryan addressed concerns by chemtrail researchers that barium could be meant to wear down a person's immune system. "Anything that causes ill effects on the body long-term, chronically, is going to affect your ability, it's just constantly working on the body. So from that aspect yeah it's a potential."

Ryan told us he's conducted research of his own about secret government testing on the public. But he's still a bit skeptical about chemtrails at the moment, especially considering that his Poison Control Center has seen no calls about barium exposure.
story by Jeff Ferrell


Here's another...Chronic barium intoxication disrupts sulphated proteoglycan synthesis: a hypothesis for the origins of multiple sclerosis.

High Barn Farm, Elworthy, Taunton, Somerset TA43PX, UK. tsepurdey@aol.com

High level contamination by natural and industrial sources of the alkali earth metal, barium (Ba) has been identified in the ecosystems/workplaces that are associated with high incidence clustering of multiple sclerosis (MS) and other neurodegenerative diseases such as the transmissible spongiform encephalopathies (TSEs) and amyotrophic lateral sclerosis (ALS). Analyses of ecosystems supporting the most renowned MS clusters in Saskatchewan, Sardinia, Massachusetts, Colorado, Guam, NE Scotland demonstrated consistently elevated levels of Ba in soils (mean: 1428 ppm) and vegetation (mean: 74 ppm) in relation to mean levels of 345 and 19 ppm recorded in MS-free regions adjoining. The high levels of Ba stemmed from local quarrying for Ba ores and/or use of Ba in paper/foundry/welding/textile/oil and gas well related industries, as well as from the use of Ba as an atmospheric aerosol spray for enhancing/refracting the signalling of radio/radar waves along military jet flight paths, missile test ranges, etc. It is proposed that chronic contamination of the biosystem with the reactive types of Ba salts can initiate the pathogenesis of MS; due to the conjugation of Ba with free sulphate, which subsequently deprives the endogenous sulphated proteoglycan molecules (heparan sulfates) of their sulphate co partner, thereby disrupting synthesis of S-proteoglycans and their crucial role in the fibroblast growth factor (FGF) signalling which induces oligodendrocyte progenitors to maintain the growth and structural integrity of the myelin sheath. Loss of S-proteoglycan activity explains other key facets of MS pathogenesis; such as the aggregation of platelets and the proliferation of superoxide generated oxidative stress. Ba intoxications disturb the sodium-potassium ion pump--another key feature of the MS profile. The co-clustering of various neurodegenerative diseases in these Ba-contaminated ecosystems suggests that the pathogenesis of all of these diseases could pivot upon a common disruption of the sulphated proteoglycan-growth factor mediated signalling systems. Individual genetics dictates which specific disease emerges at the end of the day.

PMID: 15082100 [PubMed - indexed for MEDLINE]


Finally, Also see:

PUBLIC LAW 95-79 [P.L. 95-79] TITLE 50, CHAPTER 32, SECTION 1520 "CHEMICAL AND BIOLOGICAL WARFARE PROGRAM" "The use of human subjects will be allowed for the testing of chemical and biological agents by the U.S. Department of Defense, accounting to Congressional committees with respect to the experiments and studies." "The Secretary of Defense [may] conduct tests and experiments involving the use of chemical and biological [warfare] agents on civilian populations [within the United States]." -SOURCE- Public Law 95-79, Title VIII, Sec. 808, July 30, 1977, 91 Stat. 334. In U.S. Statutes-at-Large, Vol. 91, page 334, you will find Public Law 95-79. Public Law 97-375, title II, Sec. 203(a)(1), Dec. 21, 1982, 96 Stat. 1882. In U.S. Statutes-at-Large, Vol. 96, page 1882, you will find Public Law 97-375.

[*]You mean like Katrina? Or this years California's fires?
posted by Uncle $cam at 10:07 AM
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