"I sincerely believe that banking establishments are more dangerous than standing armies, and that the principle of spending money to be paid by posterity under the name of funding is but swindling futurity on a large scale."
December 9, 2010 America's Misconception of Freedom America was founded in an attempt to escape the oppression of not only religious expression, but also the misrepresentation from a monarchist system that cared only for the proliferation and interests of the elite class. After 250 years, we have found ourselves in the same position as those who left Europe for these shores so long ago: oppressed by a system that only wants to serve itself before the citizens that support it. They say history repeats itself, and nowhere is this more evident than in the case of modern America's politicians, putting their corporate puppet masters and damaging agenda of faux patriotism before the needs of the people.
- by S. Paul Forrest / Activist Post
The Bloomberg National Poll underlines the extent to which the central bank's standing has suffered as it has come under fire in Congress, first from Democrats for regulatory lapses before the financial crisis and then from Republicans for failing to revive an economy in which the jobless rate hovers near 10 percent. Voters from both parties have criticized the Fed's $3.3 trillion in aid to the financial system.
- by Joshua Zumbrun / Bloomberg
Ron Paul on Bloomberg 12/10/10 "The Power of Ideas will Prevail" Congressman Ron Paul is interviewed by Bloomberg. December 10, 2010
Ants Can Kill an Elephant Gary North describes how the productive ants are bringing down the state, which is stomping on their anthill. The state is big and dangerous, but it is also slow and stupid. The US Empire, foreign and domestic, will end because of its crazed spending and crazed money printing for war and welfare. The cost will be high, but the result is much to be desired. Then we can live as free men and free women.
- by The Lew Rockwell Show
U.S. Homes to Lose $1.7 Trillion in Value This Year: Zillow Homes in the U.S. will have lost $1.7 trillion in value in 2010 by the time the year is through, according to estimates released Thursday by Zillow.com, an online real-estate marketplace. That's 63% more than the $1 trillion in value that homes lost last year, the report said. About $9 trillion in value has been lost since the market peaked in June 2006, according to the report. By comparison, the cost of the war in Iraq from 2001 to the end of September 2010 was $750.8 billion, Zillow said, citing a report from the Congressional Research Service. Zillow's real-estate-market reports use data aggregated from public sources by a number of data providers; the data account for 72 million homes and date back to 1996. "Despite a strong start to 2010, by the end of the year, homes lost more of their value in 2010 than they did in 2009," said Stan Humphries, Zillow's chief economist, in a news release. "Government interventions like the home-buyer tax credit helped buoy the market during the second half of 2009 and the first half of 2010, but we saw a renewed downturn in the last half of this year," he said. "It's a testament to the nearly irresistible force of the overall market correction that government incentives can only temporarily hold back the tide, and that the market will ultimately find its natural equilibrium of supply and demand."
- by Amy Hoak / MarketWatch
Ron Paul on Fox Business 12/10/10 Congressman Ron Paul is interviewed by Fox Business. December 10, 2010
U.S. To Bailout EU - cost U.S. taxpayers $980 BILLION The United States would be ready to support the extension of the European Financial Stability Facility via an extra commitment of money from the International Monetary Fund, a U.S. official told Reuters on Wednesday. "There are a lot of people talking about that. I think the European Commission has talked about that," said the U.S. official, commenting on enlarging the 750 billion euro ($980 billion) EU/IMF European stability fund. "It is up to the Europeans. We will certainly support using the IMF in these circumstances." U.S. Treasurys' prices fell and the euro strengthened against the dollar on Wednesday after the news that the United States would be prepared to support an enlarged EFSF.
- by Reuters / CNBC
New Rules: You and the IRS this January New tax rules from the 2008 Housing Bill and ObamaCare usher in more income tax (up to $345 billion a year) and a cashless economy.
Don't Raise the Debt Ceiling! As of November 7th, the total U.S. public debt outstanding reached an astonishing $13.7 trillion. This means that although Congress just raised the debt ceiling to $14.3 trillion back in February, the new Congress will face another debt ceiling vote almost immediately next year. Otherwise, the Treasury will not be able to continue issuing debt to fund government operations. The upcoming vote will provide an interesting litmus test for the new Republican congressional majority, especially those new members closely identified with Tea Party voters.
- by Ron Paul / Texas Straight Talk
Ron Paul on Bloomberg TV Dec 1 2010 Congressman Paul discusses the Fed and bailouts with Pimm Fox
UBS was the biggest borrower under the Commercial Paper Funding Facility, with $74.5 billion overall, more than twice as much as Citigroup Inc., the top U.S. bank recipient, according to the data released yesterday. London-based Barclays Plc took the biggest single amount under another program that made overnight loans, when it got $47.9 billion on Sept. 18, 2008.
"We're talking about huge sums of money going to bail out large foreign banks," said Senator Bernard Sanders, the Vermont independent who wrote the provision in the Dodd-Frank Act that required the Fed disclosures. "Has the Federal Reserve become the central bank of the world? I think that is a question that needs to be examined."
- by Bradley Keoun and Hugh Son / Bloomberg
The Fed intends to post the data on its website at midday in Washington to comply with a provision in July's Dodd-Frank law overhauling financial regulation. The information spans six loan programs as well as currency swaps with other central banks, purchases of mortgage-backed securities and the rescues of Bear Stearns Cos. and American International Group Inc.
The disclosures may heighten political scrutiny of the central bank already at its most intense in three decades.
- by Scott Lanman and Craig Torres / Bloomberg
America's Going Fascist From full-body scammers, to the digital inflation that makes the dollar not worth the money it's not printed on, to a US-caused currency war, to trade wars, and then to real wars, the melding of State and corporate power is fascism, says Celente. Because the phony election cycle has aligned the incompetent with the inept, Celente keeps his money out of the banks and in gold and silver. Anyone who trusts the politicians or the banksters is in trouble. Don't.
- by The Lew Rockwell Show
Bernanke Fibbed His Way Through '60 Minutes' Bernanke had no problem fielding Scott Pelley's questions. He will have a lot more trouble fielding Ron Paul's, beginning in 2011, assuming the Republican House Establishment allows him to take over as chairman of the subcommittee on monetary policy, and also forces Bernanke to testify before that subcommittee.
If it doesn't, then we will know for sure that the Republican Establishment is no more a threat to the banking cartel than Barney Frank was.
- by Gary North / LewRockwell.com
Especially when, thanks to the Jon Stewart, you see Ben's latest 60 Minutes interview juxtaposed against another 60 Minutes interview when the Chairman said he was printing money -- the difference between now and then being that the Fed was buying corporate assets and now it's buying government bonds.
- by Gus Lubin / Business Insider
Yes he did, as clear as day to the House Budget Committee back on June 3, 2009. And yet 17 months later Bernanke gave us QE II, which not only means the Federal Reserve will be purchasing about $75 billion a month in assets for the next 8 months, but as it so happens, some $110 billion in Treasury Notes and Bonds too. That's enough to finance the U.S. government's projected fiscal deficit right up through June 2011, in full.
THE CONTRARIAN TAKE says, what gives!
Echoing his June 3rd testimony, said Bernanke to Congressman Ron Paul and the House Financial Services Committee on July 21, 2009, "We are not intervening, or actively trying to... make it easier for the government to issue debt." Well, QE II may or may not be aimed at 'monetizing the debt' but monetizing the debt, and in robust fashion, it nevertheless is.
We here at THE CONTRARIAN TAKE love to crunch numbers. So we asked the question, just how big are these debt monetization activities in the light of historical precedence? Given the impact these activities have on the currency and bond markets, we're thinking its something we all want to know. What we found is that these activities are a whole lot bigger and a whole lot more pervasive than even we thought.
- by Michael Pollaro, Forbes / LewRockwell.com
Fight Legal Tender, Fight the Fed When asked whether Ron Paul would abolish the Federal Reserve he generally responds in the affirmative but that the Fed's abolition could only take place after a transition period so as to avoid monetary and economic chaos. Dr. Paul then explains that the first step in his abolition process would be to repeal the legal tender law, which requires everyone to accept Federal Reserve Notes ("FRNs") as payment for debts. Dr. Paul argues that by rescinding the legal tender law the way will be opened up for monetary competition. Monetary competition will necessarily push FRNs out of use as a medium of exchange because without the U.S. government's forcing people to accept FRNs as a means of payment they have zero value.
Although repealing the current legal tender law is certainly a sound economic and moral policy and something for which we should strive, I argue that there exists an opportunity for monetary competition in spite of the legal tender law and that the road leading to the abolition of the Fed should begin by making use of such monetary competition.
- by Jerry Salcido / Campaign For Liberty
Ron Paul Announces Chairmanship on Freedom Watch 12/08/10 Congressman Ron Paul joins Judge Andrew Napolitano on Freedom Watch to discuss tax reform, freedom of speech, journalism, and to announce news of his appointment as Chairman of the U.S. House Financial Services Subcommittee on Domestic Monetary Policy.
It's the Bankers or Us Problem, Reaction, Solution: Derivatives, Crash, Too Big To Fail, Bailout, Nationalization, Budget Crisis, Privatization, Debt Slavery, Austerity, Evaporating Pensions, Central Banks, Big Government, World Government. It's been quite a saga, but this economic crisis has been planned sabotage by design. The age of the Offshore Global Cartel is the age of economic warfare with the wealthy Western world. The 3rd World has largely already been brought to its knees. The remaining vestiges of national sovereignty must be eliminated and the middle class consumer society must be swept back to the feudal age by way of a tidal wave looting of living standards, cut wages & pensions, and the bread and circuses of cheap plastic goods and entertainment. The upper middle classes, the array of independent businesses, remaining lone giants and other true competition to the New World Order mafia economy system must be consolidated or dominated.
Alex Jones explains why it is the bankers or us will be free at the end of this crisis. The total cost of the derivatives is over $1.5 Quadrillion, a sum that will completely consume the world in perpetual debt, a sum that can never be repaid. It is an economic shearing, a shearing of the sheep. The economic crisis has always really been a complete transfer of power to the banking class.
Written by Director of Tax Policy Studies Chris Edwards, the plan spares no area of federal spending in its quest to control the federal budget.
The plan proposes to cut spending by $1 trillion annually by 2020, which would reduce spending to its late-1990s level of 18 percent of GDP. The plan also extends the Bush-era tax rates indefinitely, which Edwards estimates will bring revenues back to their traditional average of 18 percent of GDP, once the recession ends.
The plan focuses on spending cuts, arguing that the federal government has moved into areas it has no business being in and ought to be removed from.
- by Matt Cover / CNSNews
The Establishment Is in Despair Austrian School economists and analysts who have warned that we are facing a Federal debt cataclysm have now received grudging confirmation from a most unlikely source: the Council on Foreign Relations. The Council on Foreign Relations is the single most influential discussion forum in the United States. Its quarterly journal, Foreign Affairs, is therefore the most influential publication in the country and therefore the world. This is not to say that every article is influential. Most of them are not.
- by Gary North / LewRockwell.com
Rand Paul "We're Gonna Lay Out 500 Billion In Spending Cuts In January" December 08, 2010 CNN
Despite massive protests, US Senate passes S 510 Food Safety Bill The new Food Tyranny Act -- called the "Food Safety Modernization Act" in the U.S. Senate -- has been passed by the senate today. It would give the FDA vast new powers to criminalize and imprison farmers and food producers while doing absolutely nothing to address to real root of the food contamination problem: Factory animal farm operations (which are regulated under the USDA, not the FDA).
The bill passed 73 to 25, with Sen Tom Coburn (R-Oklahoma) emerging as the greatest "voice of reason" in the debate. His last-ditch amendment to reduce the scale of the bill was defeated this morning.
- by Mike Adams / Natural News
S 510 Food Safety bill now dead in the water due to blue slip mistake It is now being revealed that US Senators slipped up in a big way when passing the Food Safety Modernization Act on Tuesday: They added what are effectively "new taxes" into the bill, and according to the U.S. Constitution, only the House of Representatives can initiate legislation requiring new taxes.
Thus, the House is now obliged to give this food safety legislation the so-called "blue slip," meaning that it rejects the law and sends it back to the Senate for yet another vote. This would take time and effort, of course, and the Democrats have very little of either remaining in their lame duck session.
- by Mike Adams / Natural News
S 510 Food Safety bill is still alive and may unleash a new army of FDA agents The U.S. government wants to know where your greenhouse is. Under Senate Bill 510 -- which is now back in the hands of the U.S. Senate after the House hid an amendment in an appropriations bill and passed it last night -- American food producers would be required to register their facilities with the U.S. government. The feds, it seems, want a database of food growers so they know who to target for surprise inspections (show me your papers!).
- by Mike Adams / Natural News
The Stench of US Economic Decay: Russia and China Dump the US Dollar
On Thanksgiving eve the English language China Daily and People's Daily Online reported that Russia and China have concluded an agreement to abandon the use of the US dollar in their bilateral trade and to use their own currencies in its place. The Russians and Chinese said that they had taken this step in order to insulate their economies from the risks that have undermined their confidence in the US dollar as a world reserve currency.
This is big news, especially for the news dead Thanksgiving holiday period, but I did not see it reported on Bloomberg, CNN, New York Times or anywhere in the US print or TV media. The ostrich's head remains in the sand.
Previously, China concluded the same agreement with Brazil.
As China has a large and growing supply of dollars from trade surpluses with which to conduct trade, China is signaling that she prefers Russian rubles and Brazilian reals to more US dollars.
The American financial press finds solace in the episodes when sovereign debt scares in the EU send the dollar up against the euro and UK pound. But these currency movements are just measures of financial players shorting troubled EU-denominated debt. They are not a measure of dollar strength.
- by Paul Craig Roberts / Global Research
The Stench of American Hypocrisy: Crimes of Torture and "The American Dream" In a recent column, "The Stench of American Hypocrisy," I noted that US public officials and media are on their high horse about the rule of law in Burma while the rule of law collapses unremarked in the US. Americans enjoy beating up other peoples for American sins. Indeed, hypocrisy has become the defining characteristic of the United States.
Hypocrisy in America is now so commonplace it is no longer noticed. Consider the pro-football star Michael Vick. In a recent game Vick scored 6 touchdowns, totally dominating the playing field. His performance brought new heights of adulation, causing National Public Radio to wonder if the sports public shouldn't retain a tougher attitude toward a dog torturer who spent 1.5 years in prison for holding dog fights.
I certainly do not approve of mistreating animals. But where is the outrage over the US government's torture of people? How can the government put a person in jail for torturing dogs but turn a blind eye to members of the government who tortured people?
Under both US and international law, torture of humans is a crime, but the federal judiciary turns a blind eye and even allows false confessions extracted by torture to be used in courts or military tribunals to send tortured people to more years in prison based on nothing but their coerced self-incrimination.
- by Paul Craig Roberts / Global Research
Speaking to Fox Business host Judge Napolitano on Thursday about recent revelations at the Federal Reserve, Paul's typical candor showed through.
"What we need is more WikiLeaks about the Federal Reserve," he said. "Can you imagine what it'd be like if we had every conversation in the last 10 years with our Federal Reserve people, the Federal Reserve chairman, with all the central bankers of the world and every agreement or quid-pro-quo they have? It would be massive. People would be so outraged."
Paul, a longtime critic of the US Federal Reserve, is the incoming chairman of a House subcommittee on monetary policy. His most recent book, titled "End the Fed," takes aim at central banks the world over, blaming fiat money systems and fractional reserve banking for the world's increasingly volatile economies.
"In a free society we're supposed to know the truth," Paul insisted. "In a society where truth becomes treason, then we're in big trouble. And now, people who are revealing the truth are getting into trouble for it.
- by Stephen C. Webster / The Raw Story
Dear Wikileaks: Leak the Bank Records NOW, Or Forever Hold Your Peace Wikileaks head Julian Assange told Forbes that the next leak will be regarding a major American bank. He said that Wikileaks plans to release the documents early next year. Assange told Computer World in October 2009: "At the moment, for example, we are sitting on 5GB from Bank of America, one of the executive's hard drives," he said. "Now how do we present that? It's a difficult problem. We could just dump it all into one giant Zip file, but we know for a fact that has limited impact. To have impact, it needs to be easy for people to dive in and search it and get something out of it." Indeed, speculation that the leak could be about Bank of America is going viral, being reported by CBS, MSNBC, CNBC, Wall Street Journal, New York Times, Reuters, Bloomberg, Yahoo Finance, Huffington Post and elsewhere. Unless Wikileaks quickly moves up the release of the bank documents, it may be shut down before it has the chance to organize them so that they are easy to search. Wikileaks could, of course, leak the raw documents now "into one giant Zip file", and then - if it is still able to do so - leak the organized version later
- by Washington's Blog
The Naked Emperor Whatever the spin, the fact is that 1.6 gigabytes of text files on a memory stick spanning 251,287 leaked United States State Department cables from more than 250 embassies and consulates are not exactly bound to provoke "a political meltdown" - as German magazine Der Spiegel has put it - concerning the foreign policy of the world's declining hyperpower. Behind the multiple, hypocritical layers of spin served to the frantic 24/7 news cycle, politics is mostly a tacky reality show. And that's what the latest WikiLeaks show graphically lays bare. But to believe, as US Secretary of State Hillary Clinton does, that these disclosures constitute "an attack not only on American foreign policy interests but on the international community"; or that WikiLeaks, as President Barack Obama has put it, committed a serious crime, is to display nothing but tacky imperial arrogance. As if the world didn't have the right to gorge itself on the kind of political junk food served to a few consumers inside the Washington palaces of power. Clinton must have sensed that the overall sentiment after reading these cables is of a Washington suffering a nervous breakdown worthy of an Almodovar flick
- by Pepe Escobar / Asia Times
What Happens To WikiLeaks If Julian Assange Is Arrested? WikiLeaks Attorney Interview December 01, 2010 News Corp
Operation Payback cripples MasterCard site in revenge for WikiLeaks ban The websites of the international credit card MasterCard and the Swedish prosecution authority are among the latest to be taken offline in the escalating technological battle over WikiLeaks, web censorship and perceived political pressure. Co-ordinated attacks by online activists who support the site and its founder Julian Assange - who is in UK custody accused of raping two Swedish women - have seen the websites of the alleged victims' Swedish lawyer disabled, while commercial and political targets have also been subject to attack by a loose coalition of global hackers. The Swedish prosecution authority has confirmed its website was attacked last night and this morning. MasterCard was partially paralysed today in revenge for the payment network's decision to cease taking donations to WikiLeaks. In an attack referred to as Operation Payback, a group of online activists calling themselves Anonymous appear to have orchestrated a DDoS (distributed denial of service) attack on the financial site, bringing its service to a halt. MasterCard announced on Monday that it would no longer process donations to WikiLeaks, which it claimed was engaged in illegal activity. Visa, Amazon, Swiss bank PostFinance and others have also announced in recent days that they will cease trading with the whistleblowing site. The moves have led to concerted attempts by hackers to target companies they deem guilty of "censoring" WikiLeaks
- by Esther Addley & Josh Halliday / Guardian UK
Who, Precisely, Is Attacking the World? The stuck pigs are squealing. To shift the onus from the U.S. State Department, Hillary Clinton paints WikiLeaks' release of the "diplomatic cables" as an "attack on the international community." To reveal truth is equivalent, in the eyes of the U.S. government, to an attack on the world.
It is WikiLeaks' fault that all those U.S. diplomats wrote a quarter of a million undiplomatic messages about America's allies, a.k.a. puppet states. It is also WikiLeaks' fault that a member of the U.S. government could no longer stomach the cynical ways in which the U.S. government manipulates foreign governments to serve, not their own people, but American interests, and delivered the incriminating evidence to WikiLeaks.
The U.S. government actually thinks that it was WikiLeaks' patriotic duty to return the evidence and to identify the leaker. After all, we mustn't let the rest of the world find out what we are up to. They might stop believing our lies.
- by Paul Craig Roberts / Antiwar.com
The Conservative Purpose of Wikileaks Why conservatives should be championing Wikileaks and defending its founder Julian Assange.
Gordon Duff: Selling Wikileaks, Selling Hate For America Wikileaks has divided the world into two camps, those who love Wikileaks as a slap in the face for the United States and those who recognize the stench of Wikileaks for what it is, simple Israeli propaganda. Millions around the world look at Wikleaks as poor, harried Julian Assange and his personal struggle against the evil empire of Bush/Obama America. Hate, envy, oh, there is lots of envy here, America stimulates that with its highways filled with gas guzzling cars, eating half the world's meat, all the best music, television and a military that scares the begeezus out of everyone. What's not to hate?
Many American's are buying in on this hate. Journalist Arnaud de Borchgrave calls these people "self hating Americans." He has, at times, coined me their leader. Consider this my resignation. There is nothing in Wikileaks about fixing problems, the job honest critics of America believe in, or at least should. Wikileaks is cheap sleazy marketing, dime store junk in a shiny package.
- by Gordon Duff / VeteransToday
"Israel Is Basically Threatening To Drag Us Into War With Iran Whether We Like It Or Not!"
The Proper Response to WikiLeaks On a more serious note, beyond the debate on whether to assassinate Assange, blow up the Internet, conduct an unwarranted attack on an NPT signatory that is following the rules, or to continue to ally ourselves with the crazies in Pakistan and Israel, it is important to recognize that fascism of one kind or another is currently embraced by a majority in Congress, and by a large minority across the country. An alert and informed citizenry, valued by presidents from Washington to Eisenhower, is now deemed by D.C. to be a nascent domestic terrorism threat. As the American wholesale subsidy of banks, bullets and butter metastasizes, devouring freedom and wrecking the system, the desperation of the ruling class and those in its employ is palpable. Americans ought to gratefully smile as we review these latest Wikileaks, and we should savor the hilarity. Seeing our government as theatrical stooge, as incompetent popinjay, as naked and embarrassed Emperor, sets the stage well for what comes next.
- by Karen Kwiatkowski / LewRockwell.com
Lying is Not Patriotic WikiLeaks' release of classified information has generated a lot of attention world-wide in the past few weeks.
The hysterical reaction makes one wonder if this is not an example of killing the messenger for the bad news.
Despite what is claimed, information so far released, though classified, has caused no known harm to any individual, but it has caused plenty of embarrassment to our government. Losing a grip on our empire is not welcomed by the neo-conservatives in charge.
There is now more information confirming that Saudi Arabia is a principle supporter and financier of Al Qaeda and this should set off alarm bells since we guarantee its Sharia-run government.
This emphasizes even more the fact that no Al Qaeda existed in Iraq before 9/11, and yet we went to war against Iraq based on the lie that it did.
It has been charged, by self-proclaimed experts, that Julian Assange, the internet publisher of this information, has committed a heinous crime deserving prosecution for treason and execution or even assassination.
But should we not at least ask how the U.S. government can charge an Australian citizen with treason for publishing U.S. secret information, that he did not steal?
- by Ron Paul / Speeches and Statements
Wikileaks Reveals America's Delusional Foreign Policy We may never know the whole story behind the recent publication of sensitive U.S. government documents by the Wikileaks organization, but we certainly can draw some important conclusions from the reaction of so many in government and media. At its core, the Wikileaks controversy serves as a diversion from the real issue of what our foreign policy should be. But the mainstream media, along with neoconservatives from both parties, insists on asking the wrong questions. When presented with embarrassing disclosures about U.S. spying and meddling, the policy that requires so much spying and meddling is not questioned. Instead the media focuses on how authorities might prosecute the publishers of such information.
Unfortunately no one questions the status quo or suggests a wholesale rethinking of our foreign policy. No one suggests that the White House or the State Department should be embarrassed that the U.S. engages in spying and meddling. The only embarrassment is that it was made public! This allows ordinary people to actually know and talk about what the government does.
We should view the Wikileaks controversy in the larger context of American foreign policy. Rather than worry about the disclosure of embarrassing secrets we should focus on our delusional foreign policy. We are kidding ourselves when we believe spying, intrigue and outright military intervention can maintain our international status as a superpower while our domestic economy crumbles in an orgy of debt and monetary debasement.
- by Ron Paul / Texas Straight Talk
From Jefferson to Assange All you need to know about Julian Assange's value as a crusading journalist is that The New York Times and most of the world's other leading newspapers have led daily with important news stories based on his WikiLeaks releases. All you need to know about the collapse of traditional support for the constitutional protection of a free press is that Dianne Feinstein, the centrist Democrat who chairs the Senate Intelligence Committee, has called for Assange "to be vigorously prosecuted for espionage."
Feinstein represents precisely the government that Thomas Jefferson had in mind when he said, in defense of unfettered freedom of the press, "[W]ere it left to me to decide whether we should have a government without newspapers or newspapers without a government, I should not hesitate a moment to prefer the latter."
In the 1787 letter in which he wrote those words, Jefferson was reflecting the deep wisdom of a political leader who often had been excoriated by a vicious press that would make the anarchist-inflected comments of an Assange seem mild in comparison. More than 35 years later, after having suffered many more vitriolic press attacks, Jefferson reiterated his belief in a free press, in all its vagaries, as the foundation of a democracy. In an 1823 letter to Lafayette, Jefferson warned: "The only security of all is in a free press. The force of public opinion cannot be resisted when permitted to be freely expressed. The agitation it produces must be submitted to. It is necessary, to keep the waters pure."
The pretend patriots who use the national security argument to gut what remains of our most important security asset-our constitutional guarantees of a truly free press-are just what President George Washington feared when in his farewell address he warned "against the mischiefs of foreign intrigue, to guard against the Impostures of pretended patriotism. ..."
- by Robert Scheer / TruthDig
Western Civilization Has Shed Its Values For example, the U.S. print and TV media and the U.S. government have made it completely clear that they have no regard for the First Amendment. Consider CNN's Wolf Blitzer's reaction to the leaked diplomatic cables that reveal how the U.S. government uses deceptions, bribes, and threats to control other governments and to deceive the American and other publics. Blitzer is outraged that information revealing the U.S. government's improprieties reached the people, or some of them. As Alexander Cockburn wrote, Blitzer demanded that the U.S. government take the necessary steps to make certain that journalists and the American people never again find out what their government is up to.
The disregard for the First Amendment is well established in the U.S. media, which functions as a propaganda ministry for the government. Remember the NSA leak given to the New York Times that the George W. Bush regime was violating the Foreign Intelligence Surveillance Act and spying on Americans without obtaining warrants from the FISA court? The New York Times spiked the story for one year and did not release it until after Bush's reelection. By then, the Bush regime had fabricated a legal doctrine that "authorized" Bush to violate U.S. law.
- by Paul Craig Roberts / Antiwar.com
Leaks and Leakers Call me Saul on the road to Damascus. I have seen the light. As a former intelligence officer, I was initially appalled at the leak of a quarter of a million classified documents by someone who had responsibility for protecting them. I was highly skeptical of the entire WikiLeaks and Bradley Manning saga but following the leaks has convinced me that there is a lot of material that deserves a public airing to demonstrate to the American people how Washington is pursuing a senseless policy almost everywhere in the world. I have been particularly mortified in reading the accounts of meetings of US Ambassadors and Undersecretaries of State with their foreign counterparts, encounters revealing an unbelievable arrogance derived from the Bush Administration dictum "you are either with us or against us." Persian King of Kings Darius addressing his satraps could not do it any better.
The WikiLeaks plus Manning story has truly revealed that the US government will do anything necessary to silence its critics, legally or illegally. The way in which it is orchestrating a highly questionable international effort against both WikiLeaks and Julian Assange is despicable. There exists a sharp divide between those who believe government secrets should always be protected at all costs and those who believe that secrecy in government exists only to conceal official misbehavior. Obviously there is a middle ground hidden somewhere between the two, but those who favor the narrative that accepts that there is a nefarious government in Washington ruthlessly manipulating a world empire have pretty much gotten it right. The documents and the Obama Administration behavior together tell the tale.
- by Philip Giraldi / Antiwar.com
"Non-governmental and governmental organizations should think of ways to help him," a source in the Kremlin administration told RIA Novosti. "Perhaps he could be awarded a Nobel prize."
The remarks by the Kremlin official come after Assange was arrested Tuesday morning by London Metropolitan police on a warrant out of Sweden, where he is wanted for questioning. He is accused of one count of unlawful coercion, two counts of sexual molestation, and one count of rape.
According to one report, his two female accusers wanted to have Assange tested for sexually transmitted diseases (STDs) after both had unprotected sex with him and did not originally intend to press charges.
Assange claims the charges against him are politically motivated.
- by Eric W. Dolan / The Raw Story
WikiLeaks: Conformists vs. Individualists The WikiLeaks controversy is exposing one of the great divides among the American citizenry: the good, little citizen who has a reverential deference for government power and the independent, critical thinker who isn't scared to expose and oppose government wrongdoing.
Those in the reverential, deferential category are shocked and outraged over WikiLeaks disclosure of U.S. government secrets to the American people and to the people of the world. They want the U.S. government to criminally prosecute the founder of WikiLeaks, Julian Assange, for treason, even if he is an Australian citizen. Others want him assassinated. No doubt there are some who would be willing to settle for a lifetime prison term without trial at Gitmo.
Where do these people acquire this reverential and deferential attitude toward the federal government?
The primary source is the state schooling system.
- by Jacob G. Hornberger / Campaign For Liberty
Osama Must Be Laughing At Us Rep. Ron Paul (R-TX) discusses his preferred Korea policy in light of the North/South military clash: pull out all US forces and let the regional powers mediate if necessary; how Osama bin Laden's plan to bankrupt the US empire (as he did to the USSR before) seems to be working perfectly; how government programs (like Obamacare) are incredibly difficult to repeal once enacted, the devastation wrought on Iraqi Christian communities since the US invastion and the groundswell of Americans who are angered by TSA screenings but fail to make the connection between US foreign policy and terrorism.
WikiLeaks Cable Exposes NATO War Plan Against Russia US State Department cables released by WikiLeaks have unveiled secret NATO plans for a US-led war against Russia over the Baltic states.
The cables, first reported by the Guardian newspaper Tuesday and posted on the WikiLeaks site, underscore the growing geo-strategic tensions between the US and Russia even as the Obama administration has emphasized a "reset" in relations that was supposed to overcome the conflicts left over from the Bush administration.
The secret plans spell out preparations for a full-scale war with Russia that would see the immediate deployment of nine divisions of US, British, German and Polish troops in the event of any Russian incursion into the former Soviet Baltic republics.
The plans also specify German and Polish ports that would be used to receive naval assault units and US and British warships destined for battle with Russian forces.
Despite these details, there is no indication in the cables of the potentially catastrophic implications of such an armed clash between the world's two largest nuclear powers.
While some analysts in Moscow insisted that Russian intelligence was well aware of the contingency plans, their public exposure by WikiLeaks prompted statements of protest by Russian officials and demands for an explanation from NATO.
- by Bill Van Auken / GlobalResearch
Russia will build up forces without New START, Putin says Russia will have to build up its nuclear forces if the United States fails to ratify the New Strategic Arms Reduction Treaty the two countries signed this year, Russian Prime Minister Vladimir Putin warns in an upcoming CNN interview. "That's not our choice. We don't want that to happen. But this is not a threat on our part," Putin told CNN's Larry King in an interview to air Wednesday. "We've been simply saying that this is what all of us expects to happen if we don't agree on a joint effort there." He said it would take "a very dumb nature" for the United States to ignore its own interests -- but if it does, "then we'll have to react somehow," including the deployment of new nuclear missile technology. Putin said that without the treaty, Russia will have to arm itself against what the "new threats" posed by U.S. plans for a European-based missile defense system. "We have been told that you'll do it in order to secure you against the, let's say, Iranian nuclear threat," Putin said. "But such a threat, as of now, doesn't exist."
- by CNN
US Announces More Sanctions Against Iran The Obama Administration has decided to ratchet up their sactions against Iran once again, with officials announcing Tuesday that 10 additional businesses and five more individuals were blacklisted for ostensible ties with Iran's nuclear program. The moves come just one week before the P5 1 talks with Iran in Geneva, Switzerland, and will almost certainly be viewed in a negative light by Iranian officials. The companies were centered around Iran's banking and shipping industry, and the US Treasury Department is freezing all assets they have in US jurisdictions. As the talks are meant to reconcile Iran's nuclear program with US demands it appears odd timing. It will likely take a back seat in the question of US hostility to the talks, however, compared to Admiral Michael Mullen's Sunday comments, suggesting that the US was still considering attacking Iran in the near future. The US has been threatening to attack Iran regularly for years
- by Jason Ditz / Antiwar.com
'US not interested in Iran's nuclear program - it's all about oil' After years of waiting, Iran has switched on its first nuclear power plant. The country's atomic chief says the Russian-built Bushehr reactor will soon begin pumping electricity to Iranian cities. For more insight, RT talks to journalist Afshin Rattansi.
Fabricating Terror Think about this. The FBI did a year's work in order to convince two people to participate in fake plots.
If you are not too bright and some tough looking guys accost you and tell you that they are Al Qaeda and expect your help in a terrorist operation, you might be afraid to say no, or you might be thrilled to be part of a blowback against an American population that is indifferent to their government's slaughter of people of your ethnicity in your country of origin. Whichever way it falls, it is unlikely the ensnared person would ever have done anything beyond talk had the FBI not organized them into action. In other cases the FBI entices people with money to participate in its fake plots.
- by Paul Craig Roberts / CounterPunch
War Is A Lie David Swanson, author of War is a Lie, discusses the lies routinely made before, during and after a war; how FDR provoked and allowed the Pearl Harbor attack out of desperation to get the US into WWII; the contradictory narratives required to convince both the Left and the Right a particular war is worth fighting; how continued popular reverence for military service keeps the war machine going; why courage and valor are not commendable attributes when used for evil purposes; how private government and military deliberations on war never consider troop support but public appeals always do; and how Americans routinely underestimate the depravity of their imperial government.
Pentagon Deception, War Lies The United States plans to spend a billion dollars next year to change the position of the international community's to be more US friendly. The Pentagon often produces phony news stories with US tax dollars and feeds it through the media. Author and activist David Swanson says the more he researches wars, the more lies he finds that started them or is keeping them going.
The JFK Casket Conspiracy For almost 50 years, people have debated the Kennedy assassination. Some claim that the Warren Commission got it right - that Kennedy was assassinated by Lee Harvey Oswald, a lone-nut assassin. Others contend that Kennedy was killed as part of a conspiracy.
It is not the purpose of this article to engage in that debate. The purpose of this article is simply to focus on what happened at Bethesda Naval Hospital on the evening of November 22, 1963, and, specifically, the events that took place prior to Kennedy's autopsy. What happened that night is so unusual that it cries out for truthful explanation even after 47 years.
- by Jacob G. Hornberger / Future of Freedom Foundation
According to the latest National Survey on Drug Use and Health conducted by the Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration: "Drug use in the United States increased in 2009, reversing downward trends since 2002." There was a spike in the number of Americans admitting to using marijuana, ecstasy, and methamphetamine.
Yet, no matter how much it costs to wage the federal drug war (more than $41 billion according to a just-released Cato Institute study), conservatives generally support it.
- by Laurence M. Vance / LewRockwell.com
How Unalienable Rights Become Privileges You need look no further than this: The case of a New Jersey man who is serving seven years in prison for possessing two locked and unloaded handguns he purchased legally in Colorado is a perfect example of how a law-abiding citizen can unwittingly become a criminal due to vastly differing gun laws among the states, gun rights experts say. I'm going to stop with the quotes from the story right here, because nothing more needs to be quoted. A well regulated Militia, being necessary to the security of a free State, the right of the people to keep and bear Arms, shall not be infringed. What is the Second Amendment? It is recognition of a right. Parse that sentence again: Rights can be either recognized or abrogated but they cannot be granted. In order to grant something, you first must have it. The State does not possess the right to the people's self-defense (by definition) against either personal tyranny (e.g. a thug breaking into their home) or government tyranny (e.g. Stalin, Hitler, Pol Pot, etc.) You either accept that you, and everyone else, have an unalienable right to self-defense or you do not. The NRA, the Brady folks and others all in fact argue over nonsense. They argue over "reasonable restrictions." But there are no reasonable restrictions when it comes to peaceable exercise of a right. This does not mean that there should be no legal strictures for non-peaceable acts - that is, violations of other people's rights. But the principle of unalienable rights, standing alone, is that no government has a right to prospective constraint upon unalienable rights, as their peaceable exercise is unalienable - that is, beyond any government's ability to review
- by Karl Denninger / LewRockwell.com
Conspiracy Theory with Jesse Ventura - Great Lakes - Part 2 - Part 3
Are Body Scanners Dangerous to Your Health? "We the people" have not done the best job of holding our representatives accountable or standing up for our rights. But there must be a limit to our temerity. Clearly, there are enough concerns about the health risks posed by these scanners to justify placing a moratorium on their use in airports. Something as potentially dangerous as these scanners certainly shouldn't be forced on the American public without the absolute assurance that it will not harm our health or undermine our liberties. At a minimum, Congress should establish an independent commission--one not comprised of individuals connected to corporations that stand to profit from the scanners--to fully examine these concerns and report back to the American people. And DHS and TSA need to go back to the drawing board and find a better way to protect national security without sacrificing our health and our freedoms.
- by John W. Whitehead / The Rutherford Institute
TSA-Style Pat Downs Hit The Streets In Philadelphia, you don't have to visit the airport to have the government molest you, TSA-style "stop, question and frisk" pat downs are already being conducted by police on the streets targeting people who act suspicious, by doing things like putting their hands in their coat pocket.
As we have repeatedly warned, everything unfolding in the airports, from naked radiation body scanners to pat downs, is now being implemented on mass transit as well as every major street corner in America. Constitutional protections of privacy and immunity from unreasonable search and seizure have been abolished, replaced with guilty until proven innocent.
- by Paul Joseph Watson / Prison Planet.com
Net neutrality, the FCC, Wikileaks and the future of internet freedom Regardless of what you think about the Wikileaks release of state secrets, there's no debating the astonishing fact that the internet made these leaks possible. Without the internet, no single organization such as Wikileaks would have been able to so widely propagate secret government information and make it public. In the old model of information distribution -- centralized mainstream media newspapers and news broadcasts -- such information would have been tightly controlled thanks to government pressure.
But the internet allows individual information publishers to bypass the censorship of government. In the case of Wikileaks, it allowed an Australian citizen to embarrass the U.S. government while sitting at a laptop computer in the United Kingdom.
Governments don't like to be embarrassed. They don't like their secrets aired on the internet. Sure, it's okay for governments to tap all of your secrets by monitoring your phone calls, emails and web browsing habits, but every government seeks to protect its own secrets at practically any cost. That's why the upshot of this Wikileaks release may be that governments will now start to look for new ways to censor and control the internet in order to prevent such information leaks from happening in the future.
- by Mike Adams / Natural News
Patriot Act for Internet ahead? As a result of WikiLeaks, the Obama Administration may introduce a new bill that would allow government officials the ability to spy on Americans through the internet. Meanwhile, an army of hackers rally behind WikiLeaks by shutting down MasterCard and PayPal because they stopped all payments to WikiLeaks. Investigative journalist Wayne Madsen says we could see massive government surveillance of our personal computers, phones and surveillance of our internet activities.
Assassin Nation How much evidence should the U.S. government be obliged to show before it kills you? None, according to the Obama administration. And how much evidence of your wrongdoing should the government be obliged to possess before officially targeting you for killing? That's a secret, according to the president's team. If judges force the government to answer that question, the terrorists will win. The Obama administration now claims a right to kill American citizens without trial, without notice, and without any chance for the marked men or women to object legally. The Bush administration's "targeted killing" program has been radically expanded to include Americans far from any war zone. Director of National Intelligence Dennis Blair testified earlier this year that the targeting-to-kill decision depends only on "whether that American is involved in a group that is trying to attack us." As former CIA agent Phil Giraldi noted in this magazine last April, "involved" is one helluva vague standard. And the list of officially designated terrorist groups has little or nothing to do with whether those organizations actually pose significant danger to the United States
- by James Bovard / American Conservative
SPECIAL REPORT: More Than 1000 International Scientists Dissent Over Man-Made Global Warming Claims - Challenge UN IPCC & Gore More than 1000 dissenting scientists (updates previous 700 scientist report) from around the globe have now challenged man-made global warming claims made by the United Nations Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC) and former Vice President Al Gore. This new 2010 320-page Climate Depot Special Report - updated from 2007's groundbreaking U.S. Senate Report of over 400 scientists who voiced skepticism about the so-called global warming "consensus" - features the skeptical voices of over 1000 international scientists, including many current and former UN IPCC scientists, who have now turned against the UN IPCC. This updated 2010 report includes a dramatic increase of over 300 additional (and growing) scientists and climate researchers since the last update in March 2009. This report's release coincides with the 2010 UN global warming summit being held in Cancun.
The more than 300 additional scientists added to this report since March 2009 (21 months ago), represents an average of nearly four skeptical scientists a week speaking out publicly. The well over 1000 dissenting scientists are almost 20 times the number of UN scientists (52) who authored the media-hyped IPCC 2007 Summary for Policymakers.
- by Marc Morano, Climate Depot / Prison Planet
Possible 2012 Presidential Candidates: Ron Paul In the first three parts of this series, we took a look at the most mainstream potential Republican candidates for the 2012 presidential nomination. In this fourth and final installment, we'll take a look at some of the dark horses that are likely to enter the race, starting with the Congressman from Texas who has again been generating considerable buzz, Ron Paul.
Ron Paul – Congressman Paul was the biggest surprise of 2008, quietly raising remarkable support through a campaign that mostly existed on the Internet. Paul's grass-roots run now seems to have been slightly ahead of its time, as some of his ideas that sounded radical just two years ago went on to help propel many Republican candidates to victory this fall, and no doubt Paul's successful dissemination of libertarian ideals deserves a great deal of the credit for that recent success.
- by The Bradenton Times
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