Week of April 14, 2014

Monday

Big lies drown out truth

By Stephen Lendman

Beating up on Russia persists irresponsibly daily. Big Lies repeat ad nsuseam. Truth is systematically suppressed.

Assad is there to stay

By Nicola Nasser

Long gone are the days when the U.S.-led so-called “Friends of Syria” could plausibly claim that two thirds of Syria was controlled by rebel forces, that the Syrian capital, Damascus, was under siege and its fall was just a matter of time and that the days of President Bashar al-Assad were numbered and, accordingly, he “should step down.”

How the CIA made ‘Dr. Zhivago’ into a weapon

By Paul Craig Roberts

American Cold War propaganda had little, if anything, to do with the collapse of the Soviet Union. However, by dramatizing Soviet mendacity it made the world blind to Washington’s mendacity.

Pope Francis asks forgiveness for child abuse by clergy

By Jerry Mazza

This is a story with which I can identify because I was nearly a victim of a young Catholic priest when I was in my early teens.

TSA anticipates matzo transportation spree

By Lisa Simeone

The Jewish holiday of Passover is on the way (April 14–22). And rest assured: the crack teams of the TSA are ready for it. Since we all know how respectful the TSA is of people’s private belongings, dignity, and integrity, you can count on safe passage for your religious artifacts.

Tuesday

30th meridian: Russia’s Rubicon for NATO-US encroachment

By Ben Tanosborn

Sooner or later it had to happen; the West’s CIA imperial fingers had been playing with Pandora’s Box carelessly in Ukraine and the lid gave way: the box has been opened and the Un-Evil Empire is left buck naked internationally to face the truth. And the truth is clear, raw and simple no matter what machinated twists and turns of propaganda come out of the hawks’ nests in Washington to keep Americans brainwashed, ready to accept the warmongering ways of the nation’s powerful elite.

Freedom Rider: Charter school corruption

By Margaret Kimberley

Every injustice in American life can be laid at the feet of the richest people in the country and the politicians who do their bidding. Nowhere is that terrible dynamic more obvious than in the destruction of public education by the charter school system.

Is the death penalty a deterrent to the rape problem in India?

By Prakash Kona

I was a bit surprised by the dramatic pronouncement of the death penalty on three of the four men convicted in the Mumbai Shakthi Mills gang rape of a 23-year-old photojournalist and more importantly for being “repeat offenders.”

Commercialisation: the antithesis of sharing

By Mohammed Mesbahi

‘Sharing is the key to solving the world’s problems.’ Such a statement is so simple that it may fail to make an appeal, so we must go much deeper into this subject if we want to comprehend what this means. In order to understand how sharing is the surest guide to justice, peace and right human relations, we need to investigate its meaning and significance from many angles—including psychologically and spiritually, as well as from a social, economic and political perspective.

That bigger canvas

George. W. Bush the Googler

By Missy Comley Beattie

George W. Bush’s body of work, “The Art of Leadership: A President’s Personal Diplomacy,” opened Saturday at the George Bush Presidential Library and Museum at Southern Methodist University. The exhibit includes paintings of world leaders as well as Bush in the bath.

Wednesday

The global banking game is rigged and the FDIC is suing

By Ellen Brown, J.D.

Taxpayers are paying billions of dollars for a swindle pulled off by the world’s biggest banks, using a form of derivative called interest-rate swaps; and the Federal Deposit Insurance Corporation has now joined a chorus of litigants suing over it.

Ukraine’s secret recipe: ‘Brennan Kiev’

By Wayne Madsen

Central Intelligence Agency director John O. Brennan has been cooking up a storm in Ukraine and “Brennan Kiev” is the entrée on the menu. Brennan recently paid a secret visit to the Ukrainian capital to discuss with coup leaders their response to the insurgency sweeping eastern Ukraine. It has been reported by various European news agencies that Brennan landed on April 12 in Kiev with a diplomatic passport under a false identity.

Washington is humanity’s worst enemy

By Paul Craig Roberts

How does Washington get away with the claim that the country it rules is a democracy and has freedom? This absurd claim ranks as one of the most unsubstantiated claims in history.

Were chemical attacks in Syria false flags?

By Linda S. Heard

There was a time when journalistic standards meant reporting facts and not taking sides, but nowadays the news is editorialised; sometimes by presenting one facet of a story; on other occasions by omission.

This is what democracy looks like?

By Dave Alpert

I often hear, maybe too often, about American Exceptionalism. Of course, that doesn’t include South America, Central America, or even Canada. It’s only about the U.S.

Thursday

Hurtling into darkness: America’s great leap towards global tyranny

By John Chuckman

The darkness to which I refer is something largely unanticipated in political studies and even in science fiction, a field which definitely enters this discussion, as readers will see.

Washington drives the world to war

By Paul Craig Roberts

The CIA director was sent to Kiev to launch a military suppression of the Russian separatists in the eastern and southern portions of Ukraine, former Russian territories for the most part that were foolishly attached to the Ukraine in the early years of Soviet rule.

It’s God’s will

By Dave Alpert

I just got finished viewing a You Tube video about Israel’s abuse and mistreatment of Palestinian children. In the video, a Jewish Israeli woman claims that God promised Israel to the Jews and therefore, all non-Jews could accept this and leave voluntarily or stay and have Israeli force confront them.

NSA cable tapping code names explained

By Wayne Madsen

(WMR)—WMR has learned from knowledgeable National Security Agency sources that most of the world’s voice and textual data is captured and processed by four major signals intelligence activities with the code names of FAIRVIEW, STORMBREW, BLARNEY and OAKSTAR.

Working stiffs, wake up!!

By Philip A Farruggio

The lead story in the March 21 USA Today highlighted how “Corporate chiefs pull in $50 million or more.” The story went on to mention how these corporate gains were unmatched since the Internet IPO craze from the late 90s. These gains spanned the wide spectrum of American industries.

Friday

Remembering Mike Ruppert—and John Judge

By Wayne Madsen

(WMR)—Michael Ruppert and his book “Crossing the Rubicon” and his website “From the Wilderness” were among the few sources of independent thought in the months following the 9/11 attacks. I use “attacks” because this time period not only saw the aerial attacks on the World Trade Center and Pentagon but also the anthrax attacks on Congress, the U.S. Postal System, and the news media, as well as sniper shootings of people in the metropolitan Washington region. It was during these truly dark days in America and the nation’s capital that this editor wrote for Mike’s “FTW.” And it was “FTW” that, in part, inspired me to start “WMR.” Ruppert demonstrated the absolute need for independent media on the web.

FIDO and General Wesley Clark in Ukraine: US advisors on the ground, deadly messenger

By John Stanton

News that General Wesley Clark, USA (Ret.) visited the Ukraine at the behest of the National Security Advisor there—and also a senior member of Ukraine’s parliament—should be a cause for alarm. A nonprofit foundation was involved in this exercise (more below). There is a sense of open, almost joyful viciousness in all this pro-war, anti-Russian sentiments on opinion pages and television broadcasts. It is certainly racist and demeaning in tone. Such is the first step in convincing the public that the “transgressor” is equivalent to a retrovirus.

Harper rants against Russia

By Jim Miles

It is aggravating to see our little banty rooster chicken-hawk Stephen Harper strut his stuff while he spouts the false corporatist philosophy about freedom and democracy in the Ukraine.

Suffolk University: Partner in Armenian genocide denial?

By Heidi Boghosian

Students at Suffolk University Law School have launched an online petition urging the school’s president to withdraw its invitation to Armenian genocide denier Abraham Foxman to speak at their commencement and receive an honorary degree. Foxman, the Anti-Defamation League director, drew harsh public criticism in 2007 for opposing a congressional resolution acknowledging the 1915 extermination of approximately 1.5 million Armenians. Since the 15th century, Armenians had been treated as second-class citizens under Ottoman rule. In honoring Foxman, Suffolk University sends a message that politics are more important than acknowledging crimes against humanity.

Why Israeli officials are chuckling: The ‘stable’ West Bank dilemma

By Ramzy Baroud

Israel’s deputy foreign minister, Ze’ev Elkin, is a member of Benjamin Netanyahu’s Likud party and his predominantly right-wing cabinet. In a recent interview with The Economist, Elkin used the familiar tone of being conceited and oblivious to such notions as international or human rights, and reaffirmed his rejection of a Palestinian state.

Week of April 7, 2014

Monday

NATO plans global dominance

By Stephen Lendman

NATO was established in April 1949. It’s a US imperial tool. It’s been this way from inception. Washington provides the lion’s share of funding. It’s around 75%.

Freedom from religion

By Dave Alpert

For a long time I’ve thought about and have been ambivalent about writing this article. People are very sensitive about religion and their freedom to worship and I wasn’t certain how it would be received. I want to state now that I respect people’s right to worship their God in any way they choose. That is not what this article is about. It’s really about the imposition of organized religion and religious dogma into the political, economic, and social lives of a worldwide multi-ethnic reality; the imposition of beliefs that can deprive others of their rights.

The charge of the Scientology brigade

By Wayne Madsen

The almost simultaneous rise to power of Arseniy Yatsenyuk as the acting prime minister of Ukraine and Andrej Kiska as president of Slovakia has prompted fears that the secretive U.S.-based Church of Scientology is making a power grab in Central and Eastern Europe.

Kerry’s looming deadline and the peace process industry

By Ramzy Baroud

As the US-imposed April 29 deadline for a ‘framework’ agreement between the Israeli government and the Palestinian Authority looms, time is also running out for the American administration itself. The Obama administration must now conjure up an escape route to avoid a political crisis if the talks are to fail, as they surely will.

It’s not just the cat doing it outside the box

By Missy Comley Beattie

Shit. The cat was going outside the box. But I’ve dealt with the personality disordered and knew this particular challenge might be within my purview. I just needed to think outside the box.

Tuesday

Judicial Watch played into the government’s hands

By Paul Craig Roberts

Disinformation succeeds because so many people and interest groups across the political spectrum find that it serves their agendas as well as the agenda of the government.

USAID: A history of front companies acting on behalf of the CIA

By Wayne Madsen

(WMR)—The recent disclosure by the Associated Press that the U.S. Agency for International Development (USAID), a notorious nexus for contract fraud within the State Department, contracted out a project to develop a rival to Twitter in order to foment rebellion in Cuba has refocused attention on USAID’s long history of acting as a contract vehicle for various CIA covert activities.

Private financing = private government? Really?

By Frank Scott

Outrage over the most recent decision of our Court of Supreme Profits is understandable if coming from people only recently introduced to the American market system of private control of everything, especially the electoral process. But those who’ve been tilting at this windmill for many years really need to stop and think: how can they go on trying to simply control and not end private financing of elections and still believe in an alleged public power they call democracy?

Gimme shelter

By Philip A Farruggio

“Ooh well the storm is threatening, my very life’s at stake. Gimme gimme shelter before I fade away …” Such go the words of the Rolling Stones, circa 1969.

Postcard from the end of America: Columbus, Ohio

By Linh Dinh

I was in Columbus all of ten hours. Even downtown, some of the sidewalks were clogged by snow, and as I crossed the Sciotto into Franklinton, my trudging became even more laborious. Mostly I walked on the side of the street, and on side streets, right in the middle.

Wednesday

Madness in Ukraine

By Stephen Lendman

This year’s March madness wasn’t in America. Nor what continues in April. Or what preceded it. Or perhaps what’s likely to follow. It’s in Ukraine.

Obama issues threats to Russia and NATO

By Paul Craig Roberts

The Obama regime has issued simultaneous threats to the enemy it is making out of Russia and to its European NATO allies on which Washington is relying to support sanctions on Russia. This cannot end well.

Muslim Brotherhood may lose its British haven

By Linda S. Heard

Is the Muslim Brotherhood a benign political/social organisation or something far more sinister is the question the British Prime Minister David Cameron wants answered. And to that effect, he has tasked Whitehall officials to liaise with MI5 and MI6 in order to probe the Brotherhood’s ideology, activities and possible links to terrorist groups in response to reports by intelligence agencies that the Brotherhood was behind the bombing of an Egyptian tourist bus in February. The prime minister has also received intelligence that the Brotherhood is plotting against other countries from British soil.

Solartopia! Winning the green energy revolution

By Harvey Wasserman

High above the Bowling Green town dump, a green energy revolution is being won.

Tragedy in the 24/7 news media

By Walter Brasch

CNN is the 24/7 media trumpet for news about Malaysia Airlines Flight 370 that is presumed to have crashed in the Southern Indian Ocean, southwest of Australia. On that flight were 227 passengers and 12 crew members.

Thursday

Mefloquine, a nightmare drug given to military personnel and civilians

By Martha Rosenberg

The malaria drug Lariam (mefloquine) is linked to grisly crimes like Army Staff Sgt. Robert Bales’ 2012 murder of 16 Afghan civilians, the murders of four wives of Fort Bragg soldiers in 2002 and other extreme violence.

Indoctrinating a new generation

By William Blum

Is there anyone out there who still believes that Barack Obama, when he’s speaking about American foreign policy, is capable of being anything like an honest man? In a March 26 talk in Belgium to “European youth,” the president fed his audience one falsehood, half-truth, blatant omission, or hypocrisy after another. If George W. Bush had made some of these statements, Obama supporters would not hesitate to shake their head, roll their eyes, or smirk.

Another fraudulent jobs report

By Paul Craig Roberts

The March payroll jobs report released April 4 claims 192,000 new private sector jobs.

Why are Americans paying to be searched, spied on, shot at and robbed blind by the government?

By John W. Whitehead

The State Department wants $400,000 to purchase a fiberglass sculpture of a camel looking at a needle for its new embassy in Pakistan. They’ve already spent their allotted $630,000 to increase the number of “likes” and fans on their Facebook and Twitter pages. The NATO ambassador for the U.S. needs $700,000 for landscaping and gardening, the National Science Foundation would like $700,000 to put on a theatrical production about climate change, and the Senate staffers need $1.9 million for lifestyle coaching. Also, Yale University researchers could really use $384,000 so they can study the odd corkscrew shape of a duck’s penis.

We shall overcome—King and the birth of the nonviolent revolutionary movement in the US

By Jerry Mazza

Ever since it has been observed as a federal holiday in 1986, we celebrate Martin Luther King’s birthday every year on the third Monday of January. . Born January 15, 1929, he would now be 85 years old if not cut down by an assassin’s bullet on April 4, 1968. Yet in his 37 short, incredibly productive years, he gave birth to a movement both nonviolent and revolutionary that changed America irrevocably. To this day his singular voice cries out to our conscience for more: justice, equality, peace, prosperity for all. Will that we listen to overcome the obstacles we face.

Friday

America’s coup machine: Destroying democracy since 1953

By Nicolas J S Davies

Soon after the 2004 U.S. coup to depose President Jean-Bertrand Aristide of Haiti, I heard Aristide’s lawyer Ira Kurzban speaking in Miami. He began his talk with a riddle: “Why has there never been a coup in Washington D.C.?” The answer: “Because there is no U.S. Embassy in Washington D.C.” This introduction was greeted with wild applause by a mostly Haitian-American audience who understood it only too well.

Fighting our fossil-nuke extinction

By Harvey Wasserman

The 25th anniversary of the Exxon Valdez disaster has brought critical new evidence that petro-pollution is destroying our global ecosystem.

New American reality: An empire beyond salvation

By Ramzy Baroud

US Secretary of State John Kerry couldn’t hide his frustration anymore as the US-sponsored peace process continued to falter. After 8 months of wrangling to push talks between Israel and the Palestinian Authority forward, he admitted while in a visit to Morocco on April 4 that the latest setback had served as a ‘reality check’ for the peace process. But confining that reality check to the peace process is hardly representative of the painful reality through which the United States has been forced to subsist in during the last few years.

Comcast, Time Warner and Congress: perfect together

By Michael Winship

As the US Senate holds its first hearing on the proposed Comcast-Time Warner deal—a $45 billion transaction that will affect millions of consumers and further pad some already well-lined pockets—it’s useful to get a look at how our elected officials have benefitted from the largesse of the two companies with an urge to merge.

Is the US or the world coming to an end?

It will be one or the other

By Paul Craig Roberts

2014 is shaping up as a year of reckoning for the United States.

Week of March 31, 2014

Monday

Anti-fracking activist can now go to the hospital

By Walter Brasch

Vera Scroggins of Susquehanna County, Pa., will now be allowed to go to her hospital, supermarket, drug store, several restaurants, and the place where she goes for rehabilitation therapy. She can also go to the county’s recycling center, which is on 12.5 acres of land the county had leased to Cabot Gas & Oil Corp., one of the largest drillers in the country.

‘We’re all some kind of Native now’

By Greg Palast

It was Good Friday, 50 years ago on March 27, 1964, that according to seismologists, the snow peaks of Prince William Sound jumped 33 feet into the air and fell back down. Emergency warnings about an earthquake-spurred tsunami went out to towns from Valdez, Alaska, to Malibu, Calif., but no one thought to send a message to the Chugach Natives in Chenega, Alaska.

Japan stops treating radioactive water

Can it ever be treated? Is it even possible?

By Bob Nichols

SAN FRANCISCO—It is time to call it what it is: It’s a Scam. It’s a Con Job. There is no solution, never was and never will be. That’s the whole Con and you, like most people, probably fell for the notion hook, line and sinker that radioactivity can be removed from water.

Ukrainian lessons

By Linh Dinh

The first lesson, and it’s a very old one, is that violent protest does work, and also sinister tricks such as having your own snipers shoot at police and fellow protesters. Without this ramping up of mayhem and bloodshed, the Ukrainian government would not have been discredited, destabilized and finally overthrown.

Obama and pope find common ground

By Jerry Mazza

I’m a fly on the wall, really, bzzzzz, and I could hear the breaking news from Newsmax.com. Mama mia! Sharp differences over abortion and birth control surfaced as President Barack Obama held his first meeting Thursday with Pope Francis, even as the president sought to emphasize common ground issues like economic inequality during a much-anticipated Vatican visit.

Tuesday

Planned Turkish false flag exposed

By Stephen Lendman

Welcome to police state Turkey. It’s no democracy. Claiming otherwise is a convenient illusion.

Pushing toward the final war

By Paul Craig Roberts

Does Obama realize that he is leading the US and its puppet states to war with Russia and China, or is Obama being manipulated into this disaster by his neoconservative speech writers and government officials? World War 1 (and World War 2) was the result of the ambitions and mistakes of a very small number of people. Only one head of state was actually involved-–the president of France.

Alabama reporter released from jail

By Wayne Madsen

(WMR)—Roger Shuler, the Alabama blogger and former Birmingham newspaper reporter, was released from an Alabama jail on March 26.

Raffles of death

By Howard Lisnoff

The flyer for the giveaway of an AR-15 semiautomatic rifle at Grace Baptist Church in Troy, New York, on March 23, reads “Does the Bible defend my right to keep and bear arms?” With the donation of the rifle from a local gun shop, the church’s pastor, the Reverend John Koletas said he was “honoring hunters and gun owners” by holding the raffle at the church (“Troy pastor’s AR-15 rifle giveaway creates controversy,” Times Union, March 7, 2014)

TSA wants guns—can the O.K. Corral be far behind?

By Lisa Simeone

Oh, well. I was trying to avoid writing about this because it’s so idiotic, and because the official report is, predictably, so long and turgid and full of asinine acronyms and bumbling bureaucrat-speak. But since it’s being reported all over the news, I guess have to.

Wednesday

Banking union time bomb: Eurocrats authorize bailouts and bail-ins

By Ellen Brown, J.D.

On March 20, 2014, European Union officials reached an historic agreement to create a single agency to handle failing banks. Media attention has focused on the agreement involving the single resolution mechanism (SRM), a uniform system for closing failed banks. But the real story for taxpayers and depositors is the heightened threat to their pocketbooks of a deal that now authorizes both bailouts and “bail-ins”—the confiscation of depositor funds. The deal involves multiple concessions to different countries and may be illegal under the rules of the EU Parliament; but it is being rushed through to lock taxpayer and depositor liability into place before the dire state of Eurozone banks is exposed

The Russians aren’t coming

By Stephen Lendman

It’s back to the future. It’s reminiscent of Cold War fearmongering. It claimed the Russians are coming.

Obama is no credible human rights advocate

By Linda S. Heard

Prior to the US president’s meeting with Saudi Arabia’s King Abdullah Bin Abdul Aziz last week, Amnesty International urged Barack Obama to tackle the kingdom’s human rights record, suggesting that he use a female driver during his visit. That call was supported by 52 bipartisan US lawmakers and the US-based NGO Freedom House. My visceral reaction to that news was “Who the heck do they think they are!” Haven’t they heard the expression ‘People in glass houses shouldn’t throw stones?’

Western looting of Ukraine has begun

By Paul Craig Roberts

It is now apparent that the “Maidan protests” in Kiev were in actuality a Washington organized coup against the elected democratic government. The purpose of the coup is to put NATO military bases on Ukraine’s border with Russia and to impose an IMF austerity program that serves as cover for Western financial interests to loot the country. The sincere idealistic protesters who took to the streets without being paid were the gullible dupes of the plot to destroy their country.

A cross-cultural look at depression and how to recover

Interview with Gayathri Ramprasad, author of ‘Shadows in the Sun: Healing from Depression and Finding the Light Within’

By Martha Rosenberg

The just published memoir, Shadows in the Sun, is a first-of-its-kind, cross-cultural lens to mental illness through the inspiring story of the author’s thirty-year battle with depression.

Thursday

The new New World Order

By Jim Miles

It was a different world two decades ago. The Soviet Union under Yeltsin’s hand capitulated to the West and the slow march away from a democratizing state began. The West had ‘won’ the Cold War and had it within its range to make a global ‘peace dividend’ with promises to not extend NATO into eastern Europe. The U.S. economy, although already on the path to serious economic debt problems, had worked side by side with China for a new era of global prosperity, at the same time that the economic tide in Russia was all about asset stripping and the rise of the oligarchs.

Israeli meme about Jonathan Pollard patently false

By Wayne Madsen

(WMR)—Israel’s domestic and foreign propaganda apparatus is spinning the yarn that convicted U.S. spy for Israel Jonathan Pollard has served longer in prison than any other spy for an American “ally.” The meme from Israel considers that Israel, which is considered a “hostile intelligence” nation by the FBI, Directorate of National Intelligence, each of the military service’s counter-intelligence branches, the CIA, and the National Security Agency, is an American ally. American counter-intelligence places Israel in the category of a nation with a hostile intelligence agency.

The Federal Reserve has no integrity

By Paul Craig Roberts and Dave Kranzler

As we documented in previous articles, the gold price is driven down in the paper futures market by naked short selling by the Fed’s dependent bullion banks. Some people have a hard time accepting this fact even though it is known that the big banks have manipulated the LIBOR (London Interbank Overnight Rate—London’s equivalent of the Fed Funds rate) interest rate and the twice-daily London gold price fix.

Ukraine is not out of the woods

By Linda S. Heard

The pro-Europe protesters in Kiev succeeded in dislodging a president for which they’ve paid an unexpected price. The Crimean Peninsula is lost to them, perhaps forever; the majority of their military personnel based there have defected to Russia—and there may be a lot worse to come. It’s an uncomfortable truth that people’s power, however well intentioned, is more often than not destructive. It’s primarily driven by the emotions of people unable to grasp the big picture. The Kiev crowds may have initially got what they wanted, but will they want what they get?

The remains of the day—rather, of our insanity

By Lisa Simeone

Political cartoonist Ted Rall once again hits the nail squarely on the head.

Friday

‘April is the cruellest month’—or is it?

By Jerry Mazza

One of America’s greatest poems and poets, The Wasteland by T.S. Eliot, seems to miss the full truth of this April, opening with its famous first line …

The nuclear omnicide

By Harvey Wasserman

In the 35 years since the March 28, 1979, explosion and meltdown at Three Mile Island, fierce debate has raged over whether humans were killed there. In 1986 and 2011, Chernobyl and Fukushima joined the argument. Whenever these disasters happen, there are those who claim that the workers, residents and military personnel exposed to radiation will be just fine.

Pollard federal prosecutor felt brunt of Israel Lobby

By Wayne Madsen

(WMR)—Joseph diGenova, the chief federal prosecutor who brought about the conviction of Israeli spy Jonathan Pollard, told ABC News that to bargain with Israel over freeing Pollard in return for unenforceable concessions by Israel in peace talks with the Palestinians makes no sense after NSA whistleblower Edward Snowden’s actions. DiGenova said Pollard sold Israel 360 cubic feet of documents for a sum total of $600,000. Contrary to what Pollard has said about his actions only serving the interests of Israel, ABC News was told by intelligence sources that many of the documents that Pollard provided to Israel were later handed over by the Jewish state to the Soviet Union and apartheid South Africa.

Jonathan Pollard’s imminent release?

By Stephen Lendman

On Monday, John Kerry traveled to Israel for the 11th time. He did so relating to sham peace talks. Last July they began. No progress whatever was achieved.

‘Just salute and follow orders’: When secrecy and surveillance trump the rule of law

By John W. Whitehead

Question: How can you tell when a politician is lying? Answer: When he’s moving his lips.

Week of March 24, 2014

Monday

Putin’s speech on accepting Crimea into the Russian Federation, the end of American global propaganda

By Luciana Bohne

Vladimir Putin’s March 20 speech on the proposal of accepting Crimea into the Russian Federation sure tops the moronic and dishonest logorrhea that regularly issues from the mouths of the White House. No doubt this is because these speeches are written by hired public-relations hacks, whose mentality is grounded in ideas of branding and marketing.

Ukraine and Latin America: Same neocon cabal behind political disruption

By Wayne Madsen

(WMR)—The neocons are as an influencing factor in America’s foreign policy today as they were during the darkest days of the Bush administration. The coup d’état by globalist bankers allied with neo-Nazis and Zionist cadres in Ukraine is linked through several neocon operations in Washington, DC, to the aggressive push by the United States to topple progressive governments and politicians in Latin America.

The banality of The Guardian of Judea

By Gilad Atzmon

The once well-respected Guardian has been reduced in recent years into a lame Zionist mouthpiece—a light Jewish Chronicle for Gentiles’ consumption. Last week, the paper launched an attack on Martin Heidegger, the 20th century’s most influential philosopher.

Life goes on

By Missy Comley Beattie

As I sautéed locally caught fish for guests recently, I thought of Duke Energy’s coal ash spill into North Carolina’s Dan River and began to feel sick. I imagined that body of water and others across the state where the energy company has 32 coal ash containment ponds. And I visualized the toxic sludge in those ponds as huge bowls of marinade in which the fish swim for however long fish live until they’re caught, filleted, packaged, routed to market, bought by consumers, and prepared for plating.

Understanding Marx

By William T. Hathaway

Peter Knapp and Alan J. Spector have written a superb introduction to Marxist thought, a much needed one, since reading Marx can be a daunting task. The grand old man’s prose is often ponderous, abstract, and complex, so many readers can’t discern his full meaning. He wrote a great deal, but he didn’t bring it together and organize it, so it’s diffuse.

Tuesday

Alleged problems, real solutions

By Frank Scott

There are more than 300 million people in the USA. Four-hundred ninety-two of them are billionaires. That represents roughly 16 millionths of 1%. In decimal form that’s .0000016, or as a fraction, 16 over 1 million. This is not the 1% the Occupy Movement imprinted on (some of) the national consciousness. Even an innumerate person can understand that represents a teeny, tiny, microscopic portion of our supposedly democratic, equal opportunity, propaganda spouting world’s most deadly military killing machine in history.

Putin waits to play his hand amid Obama’s threats

By Linda S. Heard

The West was impotent to prevent Moscow’s annexation of Crimea, which, in its book, is no re-marriage made in heaven. With a military option off the table, its leaders have ganged up to punish Russia diplomatically and economically, though the US and European Union (EU) sanctions lack bite. They target individuals with travel bans and asset freezes as well as the Rossiya Bank whose clients’ MasterCard and Visa transactions have been blocked.

Envy and jealousy? Gag me with a silver spoon

By Michael Winship

Here on our whimsical island off the coast of the Eastern Seaboard, we have a company called Manhattan Mini Storage that is as famous for the semi-snarky wit of its billboards and subway posters as it is for the spaces it rents to we New Yorkers who live in apartments so small the mice are stoop-shouldered.

Three who made a war

By Paul Craig Roberts

The Spanish-American War was caused by three people: Teddy Roosevelt, Henry Cabot Lodge, and William Randolph Hearst. The war, which killed a number of Spaniards and Americans, including some prominent Harvard “Swells,” was based entirely on lies and machinations of these three men and served no purpose other than their personal needs. Princeton University historian Evan Thomas calls these three monsters The War Lovers.

TSA fraud and waste nothing new

By Lisa Simeone

As usual, the mainstream media are a day late and a dollar short.

Wednesday

BP, not Exxon, caused the Exxon Valdez disaster

By Greg Palast

Two decades ago, I was the investigator for the legal team that sold you the bullshit that a drunken captain was the principal cause of the Exxon Valdez disaster, the oil tanker crackup that poisoned over a thousand miles of Alaska’s coastline 25 years ago on March 24, 1989.

Voices of rationality on U.S.-Russian ties rise to the surface

By Wayne Madsen

To listen to the endless cacophony from American global interventionists who are regularly booked on the major American news networks to spew their neo-Cold War rhetoric, one might think that we are back in the 1960s during the dark days of fractious U.S.-Soviet relations. However, there are a growing number of voices in the United States who do not want to play the game of the neoconservatives and “set back” the clock of Washington-Moscow relations to the Cold War era.

Freedom Rider: Kwadir Felton and Cory Booker

By Margaret Kimberley

In nations around the world, thousands of people will demonstrate in anger if the police do harm to a citizen. Not so in the United States. In this country a uniform provides a license to maim and to kill. American police routinely beat, Taser and shoot people and no one even knows how often these assaults take place. The same government which tells us how many times police are shot doesn’t keep statistics on how often the rest of us may become victims. An estimate from 2011 indicates that American police shot 1,100 people, killing 607 of them.

Time for Arabs to shun differences

By Linda S. Heard

Seamless decision-making is a rare commodity during Arab summits because the League’s 21 member states hold differing regional views. There have been notable exceptions, such as the 2002 Beirut Summit that floated the Arab Peace Initiative and the emergency summit held last year, endorsing Geneva II talks to end the Syrian civil war. The fact that Arab leaders can agree on common goals negates accusations that the Arab League is little more than “a glorified debating society.”

Siren City—is it so bad?

By Jerry Mazza

I don’t need an alarm clock, even when we have to get up to catch a plane. The sounds of my Upper West Side neighborhood are filled with catastrophic siren sounds. We don’t need birds before the dawn has cleared away the night; we have ambulance sounds whose decibels scorch your ear drums. We also have police cars that make thumping sounds that are other worldly. And to top it off, we have screaming fire engines with honking horns that can wake the dead. For all this, New York City remains one of the most expensive cities to live in. Ah wilderness, Sleepy Hollow.

Thursday

To Russia with Sadness

By Ben Tanosborn

Luck of the Irish, you say? The unfortunate disappearance of Malaysia Airlines Flight MH370 (Boeing 777) three weeks ago could not have been more timely to the American media, as it virtually replaced what could have been an embarrassing 24–7 coverage of the Crimean event, and the little publicized US-EU involvement in the geopolitical affairs of Russia and its former Soviet sister republic, Ukraine. Putin’s “misdeeds” against our sacrosanct ways in the West became just occasional “breaking news,” but not the focus, of the monotonous repetitive statements by panels of both aviation and terrorism experts, often with questionable or misapplied credentials, inundating the studios of CNN, Fox News, and other mainstream press … in most cases as “paid experts.”

How much war does Washington want?

By Paul Craig Roberts

I doubt that the Ukraine crisis precipitated by Washington’s overthrow of the democratic government is over. Washington has won the propaganda war everywhere outside of Russia and Ukraine itself. Within Ukraine people are aware that the coup has made them worse off. Crimea has already separated from the US puppet government in Kiev and rejoined Russia. Other parts of Russian Ukraine could follow.

McCarthyism returning to America

By Wayne Madsen

(WMR)—The neocons always find it in their best interests to demonize those who oppose their expansionist and jingoistic policies. During the U.S. war against Iraq, those Americans who opposed military action were accused by the neocons of being Saddam Hussein supporters. Now, those Americans who oppose the ratcheting up of tensions with Russia over Crimea and Ukraine are being called Vladimir Putin “apologists” and “Russian collaborators.” In some cases, certain neocon propaganda mills, like the U.S. Naval War College’s National Security Affairs department, a hotbed for “neocon think,” has used Twitter and other social media to question the loyalty of individuals like New York University professor Stephen F. Cohen, former Republican presidential contender Ron Paul, and others of being agents for the Kremlin.

A military plot to take over America: Fifty years later, was the mission accomplished?

By John W. Whitehead

With a screenplay written by Rod Serling, creator of The Twilight Zone, director John Frankenheimer’s 1964 political thriller Seven Days in May is a clear warning to beware of martial law packaged as a well meaning and overriding concern for the nation’s security. Yet, incredibly enough, 50 years later, we find ourselves hostages to a government run more by military doctrine and corporate greed than by the rule of law established in the Constitution.

Equity + sustainability = sharing globally

By Rajesh Makwana

More than ever before, analysts and organisations are advocating for the process of sharing to guide our response to pressing global issues.

Friday

As nanotechnology progresses, will we be humans or humanoids?

By Jerry Mazza

I have read and reviewed several of Daniel Estulin’s books and found them challenging and revealing about the past, the present and now the future.

Getting what we NEED!

By Nick Egnatz

What do we want?

Freedom Rider: America’s aggressions rewarded

By Margaret Kimberley

The United States continues to be the worst and most persistent aggressor on the planet in large part because it has paid no price for its crimes. Our government has acted with complete impunity even as it has ravaged countries as disparate as Iraq, Haiti, and Libya with military force and occupations. It has supported proxies to destabilize an elected government in Venezuela and thwart the will of the people in that country. It has ruined the Iranian economy with harsh sanctions and now seeks to do the same with Russia. America has no shame in asserting its right to intervene anywhere it chooses to on the planet, and to punish any other nation with a mistaken belief that it will be allowed to act in its best interests.

Mahmoud Abbas vs Mohammed Dahlan: The showdown begins

By Ramzy Baroud

When the late Palestinian leader Yasser Arafat was confined by Israeli soldiers at his headquarters in the West Bank city of Ramallah, Mohammed Dahlan reigned supreme. As perhaps the most powerful and effective member of the ‘Gang of Five,’ he managed the affairs of the ruling Fatah movement, coordinated with Israel regarding matters of security, and even wheeled and dealed in issues of regional and international affairs.

Two thousand Kessab Armenians find safety in Latakia

International and local organizations providing support

By The Armenian Weekly Staff

LATAKIA, Syria (A.W.)—A delegation of priest from the Catholicosate of Cilicia who had visited Latakia to assess the needs of Kessab Armenians and express solidarity returned to Antelias after the Sunday Badarak.

Week of March 17, 2014

Monday

The Ukraine crisis: Operation Cyclone redux

By Joseph Diaferia

On July 3, 1979, U.S. President Jimmy Carter signed a directive authorizing the secret funding and support for the Afghan Mujahedeen, the purpose of which was to escalate an internal war against the government of the Democratic Republic of Afghanistan. The directive, whose principal author was President Carter’s national security puppeteer Zbigniew Brzezinski, came to be known as Operation Cyclone, and its implementation resulted in Soviet intervention into Afghanistan on Christmas Eve, 1979.

Venezuela also is being overthrown by the criminal regime in Washington

By Paul Craig Roberts

The Washington orchestrated coup in Ukraine has kept Venezuela out of the headlines. A confrontation with nuclear armed Russia is more dangerous than with Venezuela. But the violence that Washington has unleashed on Venezuela almost simultaneously with Ukraine is testimony to Washington’s stark criminality.

The Muslim Brotherhood, a pariah that should be shunned by all

By Linda S. Heard

Saudi Arabia’s decision to call a spade a spade by branding the Muslim Brotherhood (MB) “terrorist” along with other groups bent on destabilizing the Arab world was wise. It is not the moderate organization that it deceitfully portrays itself. It’s rather a shape-shifter molding its statements for public consumption according to the prevailing political ambience. Its militant wings are cloaked in different guises. The MB has schemed toward its endgame of ruling the region according to its distorted interpretation of Islam since its inception in 1928.

Was mom given dangerous drugs in the nursing home? It’s part of Big Pharma’s marketing plan

By Martha Rosenberg

The Obama administration is finally addressing the expensive, dangerous and usually unnecessary psychiatric drugs that are footed by taxpayers in federal health insurance programs. It has proposed that insurers may limit Medicare coverage of certain classes of drugs that include Wellbutrin, Paxil and Prozac for depression and Abilify and Seroquel for schizophrenia.

Postcard from the end of America: Chicago

By Linh Dinh

I’ve been coming to Chicago forever, but always just for a day or two.

Tuesday

A national summit that prompts national governments to act

By Dan Lieberman

Public discussion on the Palestinian/Israeli crisis, which has diminished in recent years, received a powerful impetus with The National Summit to Reassess the U.S.-Israel Special Relationship, March 7 at the National Press Club, Washington, DC.

95.7% of Crimeans give the finger to the White House tyrant

By Paul Craig Roberts

In an unprecedented turnout unmatched by any Western election, Crimeans voted 95.7% to join Russia. Under the twisted logic of Washington, Crimea has never been a part of Ukraine as Russians were not allowed to vote when the Soviet dictator Khrushchev stuck the Russian province of Crimea into Ukraine in 1954.

Disposable assets in the fracking industry

By Walter Brasch

The oil and gas industry, the nation’s Chambers of Commerce, and politicians, who are dependent upon campaign contributions from the industry and the chambers, claim fracking is safe.

Al-Aqsa vs. Israel: The lurking danger beneath

By Ramzy Baroud

Something sinister is brewing around and below al-Aqsa Mosque in occupied East Jerusalem, and it has the hallmark of a familiar Israeli campaign to strip the Mosque of its Muslim Arab identity. This time around, however, the stakes are much higher.

I blame you for the snowstorms

By Mary Shaw

This winter has been harsh and merciless, with record-breaking snowstorms, floods, droughts, and other weather disasters all across the U.S. And I believe the climate scientists who say that these extreme weather conditions are an expected consequence of global climate change.

Wednesday

Medicare madness: How Americans can lose benefits in a hospital

By Joel S. Hirschhorn

Tuck away the many horror stories of the wrong limbs being amputated, things being left in surgery patients, terrible infections picked up in hospitals and totally wrong diagnoses. More relevant is a bureaucratic hospitalization horror that far too few Americans covered by Medicare are aware of.

Revealed: The Washington Post compromised Edward Snowden

By Wayne Madsen

In early May 2013, employees of the National Security Agency knew something big was up. Rumors began flying around the agency that there had been a massive security leak. Although few of NSA’s civilian and military rank and file knew the extent of the compromise, NSA director General Keith Alexander, his closest aides, and NSA’s internal security “Q Group” knew the ramifications about what was known to them about the leak.

Warren’s post office proposal: Palast aims at the wrong target

By Ellen Brown, J.D.

Investigative reporter Greg Palast is usually pretty good at peering behind the rhetoric and seeing what is really going on. But in tearing into Senator Elizabeth Warren’s support of postal financial services, he has done a serious disservice to the underdogs—both the underbanked and the US Postal Service itself.

Two steps forward, one step back

By Paul Craig Roberts

Washington’s plan to seize Ukraine and to evict Russia from its Black Sea naval base has come amiss. But to turn around Lenin’s quote, “two steps forward, one step back.”

Morons on parade: TSA steals ‘grenade-shaped’ perfume bottle

By Lisa Simeone

I can’t keep up with all these stories. They come too fast and furious, one more idiotic than the next. Although there is sometimes method to the TSA’s madness, as in this case where the employees clearly wanted to steal somebody’s expensive perfume.

Perazzo’s, the family funeral parlor

By Jerry Mazza

I’ve been going to Perazzo’s all my life, from the time when it was family-owned and catered to Italian families, until a few years ago when it was privatized by a corporation.

Thursday

Operation Enduring Stupidity

By Frank Scott

Official American policy regarding the Ukraine, Russia, Putin and democracy has left the realm of ignorance and can only be described as stupid. Even the pressure of running an empire and maintaining capitalism are not enough to excuse present behavior and actions, previously labeled by some as demented but presently, and more dangerous, no more or less than complete stupidity.

Crimea is decided so what’s next?

By Linda S. Heard

President Putin has shrugged off US/EU threats to isolate Moscow economically and has vetoed a United Nations Security Council resolution invalidating the results of Sunday’s referendum in Crimea. He’s hardly flavor of the month with Western leaderships but his popularity is soaring at home; his approval rating stands at more than 71 percent, the highest since he reassumed the presidential mantel in 2012. And he’s fast attaining iconic status not only in Crimea but also in cities like Kharkov and Donetsk where massive pro-Russian demonstrations have turned bloody.

Remembering Tony Benn

By Michael Winship

Take a moment, please, to note the passing of a distinguished spokesman for the left, a man both firebrand and gadfly, of whom many Americans have never even heard. Yet what he did and said are of importance to us all and especially to the cause of democracy.

Lights, camera, arrested: Americans are being thrown in jail for filming police

By John W. Whitehead

Once again, the U.S. government is attempting to police the world when it should be policing its own law enforcement agencies. We’ve got a warship cruising the Black Sea, fighter jets patrolling the Baltic skies, and a guided-missile destroyer searching the South China Sea for the downed Malaysia Airlines flight. All the while, back home in the U.S., our constitutional rights are going to hell in a hand basket, with homeowners being threatened with eviction for attempting to live off the grid, old women jailed for feeding crows, and citizens armed with little more than a cell phone arrested for daring to record police activities.

Lettuce look at some prices

By Walter Brasch

I was resting at home when Marshbaum called to ask if I wanted to go with him to look at the lettuce.

Friday

An injunction against the First Amendment

By Walter Brasch

Vera Scroggins of Susquehanna County, Pa., will be in court Monday morning.

Counterproductive reactive Saudi policies

By Nicola Nasser

Writing in The Washington Post on February 27, 2011, Rachel Bronson asked: “Could the next Mideast uprising happen in Saudi Arabia?” Her answer was: “The notion of a revolution in the Saudi kingdom seems unthinkable.”

Darkness hovers over the arrival of spring

By Jerry Mazza

According to the Old Farmer’s Almanac, in 2014, spring began with the vernal equinox on March 20 at 12:57 P.M. EDT. This is the season that brings increasing daylight, warming temperatures, and the rebirth of flora and fauna.

A kuffiya for Tony Benn, the British warrior who ‘matured with age’

By Ramzy Baroud

Long before the Boycott, Sanctions and Divestment campaign inched slowly from the fringes of global solidarity with Palestinians to take center stage, Tony Benn had been advocating a boycott of Israel with unrestricted conviction, for years.

Independence referenda only count when Washington and its allies say they count

By Wayne Madsen

The parliament of the former Ukrainian autonomous republic of Crimea voted in a referendum to declare independence from Ukraine and petition the Russian Federation to join it as an autonomous republic. The vote was 96.7 per cent in favor of leaving Ukraine.

Week of March 3, 2014

We are taking a break

By Bev Conover

Friday, March 7—Intrepid Report will resume publishing on or about March 17.

As usual, I will be checking email, so writers may continue submitting articles that aren’t time sensitive.

Bev Conover is the editor and publisher of Intrepid Report. Email her at editor@intrepidreport.com.

* * *

Monday

Big Pharma and its bad karma

By Jerry Mazza

The noted Peter C. Gotzsche, MD, wrote in September 2013, “There are many good books about the crimes in the drug industry and the widespread corruption of the profession to which I belong: doctors. I had therefore promised myself that I would not write one.” But two things in particular made the good doctor change his mind in the summer of 2012. The sins of Big Pharma and the bad karma it never ceases to emit.

Add Wikipedia to NSA’s cyber-warfare weapons inventory

By Wayne Madsen

(WMR)—Wikipedia lauds itself in its own entry in the on-line encyclopedia as a “collaboratively edited, multilingual, free Internet encyclopedia that is supported by the non-profit Wikimedia Foundation. Volunteers worldwide collaboratively write Wikipedia’s 30 million articles in 287 languages, including over 4.4 million in the English Wikipedia. Anyone who can access the site can edit almost any of its articles, which on the Internet comprise the largest and most popular general reference work.”

South-central US poisoned by New Mexico nuke garbage dump

Enough to kill 35,5000 people released so far

By Bob Nichols

SAN FRANCISCO—Carlsbad, New Mexico is the site of the nation’s only nuclear weapons program garbage dump. Plutonium is used in making The Bomb, it melts at 640 Deg C or 1,184 Deg F, and is made in reactors. It is not mined anywhere on Earth. Reactors exist to make bombs.

Documents say Navy knew Fukushima dangerously contaminated the USS Reagan

By Harvey Wasserman

A stunning new report indicates the U.S. Navy knew that sailors from the nuclear-powered USS Ronald Reagan took major radiation hits from the Fukushima atomic power plant after its meltdowns and explosions nearly three years ago.

Ukrainian neo-Nazis declare that power comes out of the barrels of their guns

By Paul Craig Roberts

Reality on the ground in Ukraine contradicts the incompetent and immoral Obama regime’s portrait of Ukrainian democracy on the march.

Tuesday

Global war on the 99%: How international financial elites change governments to implement austerity

By Ismael Hossein-zadeh

Many countries around the world are plagued by all kinds of armed rebellions, economic sanctions, civil wars, “democratic” coup d’états and/or wars of “regime change.” These include Ukraine, Venezuela, Syria, Thailand, Iran, Afghanistan, Iraq, Egypt, Yemen, Somalia and Lebanon. Even in the core capitalist countries the overwhelming majority of citizens are subjected to brutal wars of economic austerity.

The collaborative and correct biography that Wikipedia refuses to publish

By A Collaborative Effort by WMR members

Below is the true, accurate and verifiable biography of Wayne Madsen. It has been submitted and rejected by Wikipedia in favor of a false biography (everything including Wayne’s date of birth is wrong).

Omar and the checkpoint: The essential story that is rarely told

By Ramzy Baroud

Omar is a 7-year-old boy from Gaza. His family managed to obtain the necessary permits that allowed him to cross the Erez checkpoint to Jerusalem, through the West Bank, in order to undergo surgery. He was accompanied by his father. On the way back, the boy and his father were stopped at the Qalanidya checkpoint, separating occupied East Jerusalem from the West Bank. The father needed another permit from the Israeli military to take his son, whose wounds were still fresh hours after the surgery, back to the strip. But the soldiers were in no obliging mood.

No merit badge for this former Eagle Scout

By Walter Brasch

Rex W. Tillerson, a resident of Bartonville, Texas, like many of his neighbors was upset with his city council. That’s not unusual. Many residents get upset at their local governing boards. And so they went to a city council meeting to express their concerns that the council was about to award a construction permit.

TSA clerks think Bitcoin is metal

By Lisa Simeone

Someone who describes himself as an anarchist believes what the TSA is saying? Really??

Wednesday

Prelude to world war: We are hungry in three languages

By John Stanton

On 24 February, US Secretary of Defense Chuck Hagel held a press conference to announce some of the details of Pentagon’s 2015 budget. Beyond the news of cuts in war-fighting machinery and personnel—and the pox of “irresponsible” sequestration on the federal government—Hagel made a point of indicating that the world is becoming an increasingly volatile place. He also seemed to express a bit of disgust for nation building of the type attempted by the USA in Iraq and Afghanistan.

Looking in the global mirror: Destabilizers R’Us … not Russia

By Ben Tanosborn

No, this is not a good time to be a critic of American foreign policy, of finding fault with ourselves, our econo-political system, or the bellicose components which hold together the Empire. For some insane predatory reason, the American elite is not just content with having “capitalistically” sunk the Soviet Union three decades ago … but want to make sure core-Russia remains down and out.

Washington’s arrogance, hubris, and evil have set the stage for war

By Paul Craig Roberts

In some quarters public awareness is catching up with Stephen Lendman, Michel Chossudovsky, Rick Rozoff, myself and a few others in realizing the grave danger in the crisis that Washington has created in Ukraine.

Five unsavory ingredients hidden in your food

By Martha Rosenberg

Two years ago, the nation’s collective stomach churned when people learned they were eating a meat product called “pink slime.” Lean finely textured beef as the industry wanted called, it was meat scraps that were once earmarked for pet food repurposed for the human dinner table, especially the National School Lunch Program. While the product looked like human intestines, what caused the national revulsion was that it was treated with puffs of ammonia to kill the bacterium E. coli. Yum.

Glenn Greenwald and the myth of income inequality

Brother, can you spare a billion?

By Douglas Valentine

Quite righteously, Glenn Greenwald and his sidekick Jeremy Scahill see nothing wrong with Pierre Omidyar having $8 billion, and not using it to house, feed, clothe and heal the poor. No harm, no foul.

Thursday

The stone that brings down Goliath?

Richmond, Calif., and eminent domain

By Ellen Brown, J.D.

In a nearly $13 billion settlement with the US Justice Department in November 2013, JPMorgan Chase admitted that it, along with every other large US bank, had engaged in mortgage fraud as a routine business practice, sowing the seeds of the mortgage meltdown. JPMorgan and other megabanks have now been caught in over a dozen major frauds, including LIBOR-rigging and bid-rigging; yet no prominent banker has gone to jail. Meanwhile, nearly a quarter of all mortgages nationally remain underwater (meaning the balance owed exceeds the current value of the home), sapping homeowners’ budgets, the housing market and the economy. Since the banks, the courts and the federal government have failed to give adequate relief to homeowners, some cities are taking matters into their own hands.

Vladimir Putin, the world’s last true statesman

By John Chuckman

Everywhere you look in the West, you find political pygmies rather than statesmen.

Freedom Rider: “Journalists” follow Obama on Ukraine

By Margaret Kimberley

Prominent journalists in the United States may as well be on the White House payroll. They are consistent cheerleaders for whoever occupies the oval office and the corporate corner office. They make no attempt to hide their allegiance to power and their lack of interest in informing the public.

Free speech, RIP: A relic of the American past

By John W. Whitehead

Living in a representative republic means that each person has the right to take a stand for what they think is right, whether that means marching outside the halls of government, wearing clothing with provocative statements, or simply holding up a sign. That’s what the First Amendment is supposed to be about.

TSA detains Lena Dunham, confiscates Terroristy Kitty keychain

By Lisa Simeone

The TSA once again illegally detained someone just trying to go about her business. The fact that the “someone” happens to be famous is irrelevant, except perhaps to those who are into celebrities. The salient point is that the TSA abuses people with impunity.

Friday

NAFTA partners pushing North American competitiveness integration agenda

By Dana Gabriel

The recent North American Leaders Summit in Mexico was seen as a perfect opportunity to try and kick-start the trilateral partnership. While there was no headline grabbers or major breakthroughs, the NAFTA partners still moved forward on some crucial issues that centered around North American competitiveness. They developed a shared set of priorities and established a roadmap for enhancing cooperation in areas such as trade, transportation, energy, as well as border facilitation. This includes creating a North American trusted traveler program, which is part of ongoing efforts to establish a fully integrated continental security perimeter. During separate bilateral meetings, Canada and Mexico also took steps towards strengthening political, economic and security ties.

The Bush-Obama’s neocon foreign policy of isolating Russia and of expanding NATO is a dismal failure

By Rodrigue Tremblay

The hazards associated with American foreign policy since the collapse of the Soviet Union in 1991 should appear obvious to all, because it is precisely this policy that has caused the crisis in Ukraine with all its negative consequences for the coming months and years.

Propaganda rules the news

By Paul Craig Roberts

Gerald Celente calls the Western media “presstitutes,” an ingenuous term that I often use. Presstitutes sell themselves to Washington for access and government sources and to keep their jobs. Ever since the corrupt Clinton regime permitted the concentration of the US media, there has been no journalistic independence in the United States except for some Internet sites

On Abby Martin, freedom and tolerance

By Gilad Atzmon

RT presenter Abby Martin has bought herself a reputation as a 9/11 sceptic and a vocal opponent of Israeli‘s policies .Tuesday, she denounced Russian action in Crimea while she was live on air.

Hillary Rodham Clinton, America’s Perpetual Lady of Infliction

By Ben Tanosborn

Quickly, take cover! America’s former top diplomat decided to become a talking-mime now that she’s two months away from her office in the State Department!

Direct to consumer drug advertising works so well, they are now selling radiation treatment directly to consumers

By Martha Rosenberg

Seventeen years after direct-to-consumer (DTC) drug advertising was instituted in the US, 70 percent of adults and 25 percent of children are on at least one prescription drug.

Postcard from the end of America: Joliet, Illinois

By Linh Dinh

The story of Joliet is familiar enough. With its industries gone, a city turns to the casino as a last ditch salvation, but cannot reverse its decline. The details of this disintegration, though, can be interesting.

Tears of Yarmouk—the Palestinian lesson that every Syrian should know

By Ramzy Baroud

In the early days of the Syrian uprising-turned civil war three years ago, the writing on the wall of it becoming an intricate regional and international conflict was there for all to see. Palestinians in Syria were likely to find themselves pawns in a dirty war, but few could have predicted the magnitude of the crisis, and perhaps, few cared.

A gift from the past

By Jerry Mazza

It was Christmas of 1991 and my father was in St. Vincent’s Hospital diagnosed with Alzheimer’s disease. My daughter Stephanie who was at NYU film school at the time was charged with helping clean out his apartment. As luck would have it, she found a wooden box full of super-8 films that he had shot of my mother (who would tragically be gone at 38) leaving my uncles, aunts and grandfather in Brooklyn, NY.

Week of February 24, 2014

Monday

Thanks to Bill Clinton, Mel Reynolds is still an active tool for the Rhodes Secret Society

By John Klyczek

With his prison sentence commuted by fellow Rhodes scholar, Bill Clinton, disgraced ex-Congressman Mel Reynolds was arrested in Harare, Zimbabwe, on Monday, February 18. Reynolds, who was convicted of the “statutory” rape of a 16-year-old girl and solicitation of child pornography, is now charged with “possession of pornographic material he shot on different occasions … in his hotel rooms” including “more than 100 pornographic videos and a further 2,000 nude pictures,” according to NewsdzeZimbabwe.

Sleepwalking again

By Paul Craig Roberts

On the 100th Anniversary of World War 1, the Western powers are again sleepwalking into destructive conflict. Hegemonic ambition has Washington interfering in the internal affairs of Ukraine, but developments seem to be moving beyond Washington’s control.

Harassed by the Empire

They do it because they can

By Publius

I’m a WASP in my late 60s and retired after spending most of my working life in finance. I’m a US Army veteran. And I get harassed by Customs and Border Protection each time I return to my home in the USA.

A free and open Internet: The latest from the frontlines

By Michael Winship

Last Wednesday’s announcement by Federal Communications Commission Chairman Tom Wheeler that the FCC would write new rules to insure open access to the Internet—otherwise known as Net neutrality—generally was seen by consumers as a step in the right direction. But media reform advocates were concerned that it didn’t go far enough.

Egyptian historic breakthrough with Russia not a strategic shift yet

By Nicola Nasser

The recent two-day first official visit in forty years by an Egyptian defense minister to Russia of Egypt’s strongman, Field Marshal Abdel Fattah al-Sisi, accompanied by Foreign Minister Nabil Fahmy, was indeed an historic breakthrough in bilateral relations, but it is still premature to deal with or build on it as a strategic shift away from the country’s more than three-decade strategic alliance with the United States.

Tuesday

Sochi Olympiad: Outing of Americans’ political envy

By Ben Tanosborn

Vic Wild, paying homage to his adoptive Red-White-and-Blue, gave two gold medals to Russia which if given to the United States, would have tied Russia’s final tally in gold (Russia, however, would have won the final total medal count by one instead of five).

Western meddling opens Pandora’s Box in Ukraine

By Linda S. Heard

While EU envoys to Kiev were patting themselves on the back for twisting the arm of Ukraine’s beleaguered leader, President Viktor Yanukovych had made a hasty exit. ‘Peaceful’ demonstrators in Independence Square were still baying for his blood even after he signed an agreement to early elections, a reversion to the 2004 constitution clawing back presidential powers—as well as the formation of a unity government!

Thailand is viewed as China’s Ukraine by Obama cold warriors

By Wayne Madsen

(WMR)—The neoconservatives who continue to permeate the Obama administration in the persons of the foul-mouthed and ill-tempered Assistant Secretary of State for European and Eurasian Affairs Victoria Nuland, National Security Adviser Susan Rice, and U.S. Ambassador to the UN Samantha Power, along with second- and third-tier functionaries, have decided on all-out covert warfare with the nations of the Shanghai Cooperation Organization (SCO). This information has been passed to WMR by intelligence assets in the field in some of the most remote parts of the Asian land mass.

Lions and tigers and shoes, oh my!

By Lisa Simeone

Ah, yes, earlier this month it was toothpaste, now it’s shoes.

I’m obnoxious but so what?

By Missy Comley Beattie

By the time you read this, I may have a grandson. May be on my way to spend a week with him. I’m excited yet anxious, thinking of years ago and the way I felt when I was pregnant, unconcerned with gender, caring only about a healthy baby.

Wednesday

Anatomy of the Deep State

By Mike Lofgren

There is the visible government situated around the Mall in Washington, and then there is another, more shadowy, more indefinable government that is not explained in Civics 101 or observable to tourists at the White House or the Capitol. The former is traditional Washington partisan politics: the tip of the iceberg that a public watching C-SPAN sees daily and which is theoretically controllable via elections. The subsurface part of the iceberg I shall call the Deep State, which operates according to its own compass heading regardless of who is formally in power.

Democracy murdered by protest as Ukraine falls to intrigue and violence

By Paul Craig Roberts

Who’s in charge? Certainly not the bought-and-paid-for-moderates that Washington and the EU hoped to install as the new government of Ukraine. The agreement that the Washington- and EU-supported opposition concluded with President Yanukovich to end the crisis did not last an hour. Even the former boxing champion, Vitaly Klitschko, who was riding high as an opposition leader has been booed by the rioters and shoved aside. The newly appointed president by what is perhaps an irrelevant parliament, Oleksandr Turchynov, has no support base among those who overthrew the government. As the BBC reports, “like all of the mainstream opposition politicians, Mr. Turchynov is not entirely trusted or respected by the protesters in Kiev’s Independence Square.”

Turkey’s pro-Western imperialism puppets accuse Turkish people of being ‘conspiracy theorists’

By Sibel Edmonds

I just finished reading a ridiculous hit piece published at Eurasia.Net accusing the Turkish people of being conspiracy theorists for believing that the imperial US and EU are engaged in schemes towards regime change around the world. According to the article and its sources, one must be ignorant, uninformed, uneducated and a big time conspiracy theorist in order to believe that the US-EU are engaged in political manipulations and regime change operations around the world.

Judge: NYPD’s spying on Muslims is OK, reporting on it is not

Critics say ruling is reminiscent of legal justification for Japanese-American internment camps

By Sarah Lazare

A federal judge ruled Thursday that the NYPD’s secret spying on Muslims in schools, restaurants, and mosques with no evidence of wrongdoing is perfectly legal, and it was the media’s exposure of this surveillance that was the real cause of harm. The decision prompted outcry from civil rights and racial justice advocates.

Humanity is at the crossroads of the most serious economic and social crisis in modern history

By Frank Scott

Which is why what remains of a privileged population in the USA is being mobilized to support regime change in Syria, Thailand, Venezuela and the Ukraine, a health care marketplace in the USA, a zealous drive to destroy Iran and an equally fanatic attempt at declaring Russia a worse menace now than at the time of brain dead American anti-communism.

Thursday

Curbing the diagnosis of ADHD

By Jerry Mazza

In the Feb. 23 The New York Times, Stephen P. Hinshaw and Richard M. Scheffler point to “the writing is on the chalkboard” with their op-ed Expand Pre-K, Not ADHD: “Over the next few years, America can count on a major expansion of early childhood education. We embrace this trend, but as health policy researchers, we want to raise a major caveat: Unless we’re careful, today’s preschool bandwagon could lead straight to an epidemic of 4- and 5-year-olds wrongfully being told that they have attention deficit hyperactivity disorder.”

America’s Jewish ambassador to Ukraine lauds neo-Nazi Ukrainian party

By Wayne Madsen

(WMR)—Not since the massacre at a summer camp of social democratic Norwegian youth by the Israel-loving Norwegian neo-Nazi Anders Breivik has there been clearer evidence of the collusion between Zionists and neo-Nazis as the statement by the pro-Zionist U.S. Ambassador to Ukraine Geoffrey Pyatt that the neo-Nazi Ukrainian political party Svoboda “played an extremely constructive role during these three months of demonstrations.”

Ukraine’s troubles are far from over

By Linda S. Heard

President Viktor Yanukovych has fled the scene but who can blame him? Even after he announced a truce so-called peaceful protesters attacked retreating police with volleys of petrol bombs. And when he caved-in to an EU-brokered deal to fulfill their demands, the crowd in Kiev’s Independence Square was baying for his blood and referring to opposition leaders as “traitors” for signing-up to it.

The death of innocents

By Philip A Farruggio

For those out there who have never had a dog or cat as a pet for a long period of time, what I am about to share may seem overly dramatic. Yet, one hopefully realizes that these blessed creatures become like little children to us. They, like little children, need our focused attention and caring in order to survive.

Communicating the Atomic Fart

By Walter Brasch

My son’s best friend bought an iPhone shortly after they were first released in 2007.

Friday

The constitutional hoax

By Arthur D. Robbins

For centuries, the United States Constitution has been held up to the world as one of civilization’s greatest achievements. It has been exalted and extolled at home and abroad, emulated and imitated by countries in both hemispheres. In some broad sense, it has provided a foundation for our belief in man’s perfectibility and the possibility of government that serves the common good.

An indirect offensive strategy against the Obama-Cameron-Harper doctrine

By Wayne Madsen

(WMR)—The policy employed by U.S. President Barack Obama, British Prime Minister David Cameron, and Canadian Prime Minister Stephen Harper, the primary agitators behind the violent overthrow of democratically-elected governments around the world, can best be referred to as the OCH (Obama-Cameron-Harper) doctrine. The first country to feel the effect of the OCH doctrine is Ukraine, where mob violence, stoked by provocateurs on the payroll of global hedge fund vulture George Soros and the Central Intelligence Agency, brought about the overthrow of the government of democratically-elected President Viktor Yanukovych.

The crisis in Ukraine

By Paul Craig Roberts

In 2004, Hungary joined the EU, expecting streets of gold. Instead, four years later in 2008, Hungary became indebted to the IMF. The rock video by the Hungarian group, Mouksa Underground sums up the result in Hungary today of falling into the hands of the EU and IMF.

Vigilantes with a badge: The war against the American people

By John W. Whitehead

The following incidents are cautionary tales for anyone who still thinks that they can defy police officers, even if it’s simply to disagree about a speeding ticket, challenge a search warrant or defend oneself against an unreasonable or unjust charge, without deadly repercussions. The message they send is that “we the people” have very little protection from the standing army that is law enforcement.

Liberals face a hard day’s knight?

By Michael Winship

That’s a pretty pathetic knight up there on the cover of the March issue of Harper’s Magazine. Battered and defeated, his shield in pieces, he’s slumped and saddled backwards on a Democratic donkey that has a distinctly woeful—or bored, maybe—countenance. It’s the magazine’s sardonic way of illustrating a powerful throwing down of the gauntlet by political scientist Adolph Reed, Jr. He has challenged the nation’s progressives with an article in the magazine provocatively titled, “Nothing Left: The Long, Slow Surrender of American Liberals.”

Week of February 17, 2014

Monday

Presidents’ Day: from 1885 to 2014

By Jerry Mazza

Presidents’ Day is an American holiday celebrated on the third Monday in February. Originally established in 1879 in recognition of President George Washington, it is still officially called “Washington’s Birthday” by the federal government.

The missing 28 pages about Saudi Arabia and 9/11

By Wayne Madsen

(WMR)—The Obama administration, like its predecessor, is doing everything possible to maintain the secrecy of the 28 pages of the 800-page congressional report on the intelligence failures surrounding the 9/11 attack. The report, titled, “Joint Inquiry Into Intelligence Community Activities Before and After the Terrorist Attacks of September 11, 2001,” detailed the results of a congressional investigation of the events surrounding 9/11. But entirely redacted from the report are 28 pages dealing with specific sources of foreign support for the alleged 9/11 hijackers, fifteen of whom were Saudi nationals.

The five criminals

In America, the Gestapo has replaced the rule of law

By Paul Craig Roberts

RT is the best English language news source available to Americans. On January 29, RT published a photo of five presidential appointees lying through their teeth to Congress.

No honor in killing ‘God’s Dog’

By Walter Brasch

A week before the opening of the Olympics, 759 Pennsylvanians paid $25 each to participate in a sport that would never be a part of any international competition.

Lang Lang and Obama: Two different kinds of performances

By Missy Comley Beattie

It’s Wednesday. For some reason, I think of Wednesday’s child, full of woe. And I’ve just glanced up and out to see large snowflakes dancing between the two towers of my complex, swirling indecision, whether to rest or continue performing.

Tuesday

The Snowden effect: From governmentalized to privatized and commoditized

How safe is our information with billionaire corporatists & dollar-hungry opportunistic individuals?

By Sibel Edmonds

Please raise your hand if you are one of many concerned citizens when it comes to our government collecting and keeping your data without a warrant or any justification. Do you see my hand? I know I am a shorty, but it is up there; my hand. I assure you. In fact it has been there for a long time.

Russia under attack

By Paul Craig Roberts

In a number of my articles I have explained that the Soviet Union served as a constraint on US power. The Soviet collapse unleashed the neoconservative drive for US world hegemony. Russia under Putin, China, and Iran are the only constraints on the neoconservative agenda.

Usurious returns on phantom money: The credit card gravy train

By Ellen Brown, J.D.

The credit card business is now the banking industry’s biggest cash cow, and it’s largely due to lucrative hidden fees.

Master race chosen people-ism: An infantile disorder

By Frank Scott

The problem of racism is primarily the treatment of darker skinned people by the lighter skinned; that treatment is always murderously damaging to humanity itself and not only the particular people being savaged by those who thought themselves, somehow, more human than others. But reaction to mistreatment on racial grounds, especially without consideration of the economic roots of such inhumanity, may be as dangerous to the survival of the race.

Building a society based on social and environmental values

By Kéllia Ramares-Watson

“Life Without Money” is a compilation of essays on theories and practices of non-monetary economics, which some people, including Anitra Nelson, call non-market socialism. It is a book intended primarily for academics who might want to consider teaching from this book, and those whom Nelson calls “thinking activists,” i.e., people who are primarily activists, but who are also interested in economic theory. Each chapter has many end notes and several gray boxes that mark out special points a teacher might wish to bring out during a lecture.

Wednesday

Do you remember Bosnia?

By Luciana Bohne

If you remember Bosnia from the 1990s, you may remember the much-publicized ethnic violence, massacres and rapes, and something savagely atavistic, dismembering a unified country once called Yugoslavia. It is now back on a pre-WW I map, the disunified “Balkans,” a mosaic of statelets reconstituted along ethno-nationalist lines: Croatia, Slovenia, Serbia, Montenegro, Macedonia—and the British-UN protectorate of Bosnia-Herzegovina (BiH) and Republika Srpska (Serb Republic), a collage of Croat, Serb, and Muslim populations, each inhabiting its own ethnic space.

US and EU are paying Ukrainian rioters and protesters

By Paul Craig Roberts

A number of confirmations have come in from readers that Washington is fueling the violent protests in Ukraine with our taxpayer dollars. Washington has no money for food stamps or to prevent home foreclosures, but it has plenty of money with which to subvert Ukraine.

Egypt’s Russian pivot restores equilibrium

By Linda S. Heard

Cairo’s decision to cement close economic, diplomatic and military ties with Moscow was not one that the interim government took lightly. Egypt was pushed to forge new alliances by its longtime ally—the US, which chose to side with the Muslim Brotherhood, following president Mohammad Mursi’s ousting on July 3, 2013, rather than accept the majority’s will.

How Pharma got doctors to prescribe Risperdal, Wellbutrin, Bextra, Neurontin, Prempro & more

By Martha Rosenberg

Until 2010 when the Physician Payments Sunshine Act, which requires disclosure of Pharma payments, passed, the only thing better than working for Pharma was being a doctor wined and dined by Pharma.

Paranoia, surveillance and military tactics: Have we become enemies of the government?

By John W. Whitehead

Relationships are fragile things, none more so than the relationship between a citizen and his government. Unfortunately for the American people, the contract entered into more than 200 years ago has been reduced to little more than a marriage of convenience and fiscal duty, marked by distrust, lying, infidelity, hostility, disillusion, paranoia and domestic abuse on the part of the government officials entrusted with ensuring the citizenry’s safety and happiness.

Thursday

Why opt for a no-cost solution to a problem when there is money to be made?

By Bev Conover

In cities and towns across the US, red light cameras are being installed for the ostensible purpose of preventing T-bone collisions at intersections, not to mention raking in big bucks from motorists running red traffic lights.

Diplomacy Canadian style

By Eric Walberg

A new identity and a precious Canadian passport for a fugitive Mossad agent. A honeypot security officer working for Canadian immigration romancing an Iranian-Canadian businessman, and letting the cat out of the bag. Who needs John le Carre?

Netanyahu warns world (again) about Iran ‘aggression’

By Jerry Mazza

Israeli Prime Minister Binyamin Netanyahu opened his weekly Cabinet meeting Sunday with more words of warning to the West about Iran.

As American as apple pie

By Dave Alpert

Michael Dunn, the white man who murdered Jordan Davis, a 17-year-old African-American, while arguing over the loudness of the music being played, was found guilty on four of the five counts with which he was charged.

Global capitalism has written off the human race

By Paul Craig Roberts

Economic theory teaches that free price and profit movements ensure that capitalism produces the greatest welfare for the greatest number. Losses indicate economic activities where costs exceed the value of production, thus investment in these activities is curtailed. Profits indicate economic activities where the value of output exceeds its cost, thus investment increases. Prices indicate the relative scarcity and value of inputs and outputs, thus serving to organize production most efficiently.

Friday

Obama’s nuke-powered drone strike on America’s energy future

By Harvey Wasserman

So the “all the above” energy strategy now deems we dump another $6.5 billion in bogus loan guarantees down the atomic drain. Energy Secretary Ernest Moniz has announced finalization of hotly contested taxpayer handouts for the two Vogtle reactors being built in Georgia. Another $1.8 billion waits to be pulled out of your pocket and poured down the radioactive sinkhole.

Amerikan Stasi police state staring us in the face

American sheeple stick heads in the sand; pretend to be ostriches

By Paul Craig Roberts

American taxpayers have built an entire city in Virginia so that the Pentagon can practice occupying American cities and putting down protests by US citizens.

CIA‘s use of Nazi strategy on Ukrainian right-wing nationalists unabated since Cold War

By Wayne Madsen

The Central Intelligence Agency appears to be caught in a time warp. At the roots of the CIA’s and George Soros’s “resistance” movement in Ukraine lie Ukrainian fascists and pro-Nazis, the ideological forbears of the current Ukrainian right-wing fascist party Svoboda and other radical right and anti-Russian groups largely based in western Ukraine.

The Libyan bedlam: General Hifter, the CIA and the unfinished coup

By Ramzy Baroud

On Friday, Feb. 14, 92 prisoners escaped from their prison in the Libyan town of Zliten. Nineteen of them were eventually recaptured, two of whom were wounded in clashes with the guards. It was just another daily episode highlighting the utter chaos which has engulfed Libya since the overthrow of Muammar Ghaddafi in 2011.

Freedom Rider: White men and guns

By Margaret Kimberley

Michael Dunn may be an easily identifiable outlier, but America clearly has a serious gun fixation and it results in the deaths of 11,000 people every year. Michael Dunn is the Jacksonville, Florida, man who shot Jordan Davis to death in the so-called “loud music” case. It should have been called the “white person shoots black person just because” case.

Week of February 10, 2014

Monday

Barack Obama’s NSA/NDAA police-state narrative

By Larry Pinkney

Barack Obama and his corporate-owned Democrat and Republican accomplices are engaged in a war to control and dominate the very minds and “ideas” of everyday ordinary Black, White, Brown, Red, and Yellow people in this nation. The narrative propagated by Obama and his cohorts represent the insidious political and economic interests of the ruling national and global power elite, and every effort is utilized by this elite and their minions to discredit, marginalize, and otherwise neutralize those who dare to seriously “question” this narrative.

Full spectrum Peeping Tomism

By Linh Dinh

In 1928, Ho Chi Minh was in Thailand while his Chinese wife, Zeng Xueming, remained in Canton. He sent her this letter: “From the day we parted, already more than a year. I miss you with such anguish, it needn’t be said. Borrowing rosy wings, I send a few lines to reassure you. Such is my desire, and I wish your mother ten thousand good lucks. Clumsily yours.”

U.S. sailors sick from Fukushima radiation file new suit against Tokyo Electric Power

By Harvey Wasserman

Citing a wide range of ailments from leukemia to blindness to birth defects, 79 American veterans of 2011’s earthquake/tsunami relief Operation Tomadachi (“Friendship”) have filed a new $1 billion class action lawsuit against Tokyo Electric Power.

The propaganda Olympics

By Walter Brasch

For Vladimir Putin, the winter Olympics is not about sports or international camaraderie. It’s a carefully orchestrated propaganda opportunity to try to showcase the nation’s athletes and show the world a Russia that, even with its great culture and arts, may exist only in the imaginations of those who believe in restoring the country’s previous grandeur.

The Beatles on Sullivan: You say you want a revolution?

By Michael Winship

Just to briefly buzz in on this weekend’s whir of nostalgia around the 50th anniversary of The Beatles’ first appearance on The Ed Sullivan Show. As many have noted, it was less than three months after the Kennedy assassination, bringing across the Atlantic a whiff of much needed fresh air, a reacquaintance with joy we all had been craving since November 22, 1963.

Tuesday

The US and EU spur another Syria in Ukraine

By Joseph M. Cachia

The fact that we have exposed the lies and exaggerations of the global elite—from Iraq’s illusionary weapons of mass destruction to hysterical warnings of Syria’s chemical weapons—does not count for much. The Obama administration—now an imperial presidency in serious violation of the Constitution and the will of the American people—and its partners, primarily the EU (European Union) countries, continue to push for all-out wars despite the transparent quality and facile nature of disinformation put out every few days.

When did New York City start looking like a third world country?

By Jerry Mazza

I’m not trying to steal Joe Biden’s thunder when he landed at LaGuardia and saw frozen planes, unplowed runways and shortage of underpaid personnel. Of course, Governor Cuomo and newly elected Mayor Bill deBlasio jumped to get the money to redo the 75-year-old LaGuardia, including some minimum wages. But I’m not talking about architecture or wages. I’m talking about people decaying before my eyes as I walk down Broadway on a 20-degree, gray, Saturday morning; decaying along with the unpicked-up mounds of frozen snow and lingering garbage.

Should the minimum wage be raised?

By Paul Craig Roberts

Some years ago when I was Business Week’s columnist an up-and-coming academic economist published his conclusions that raising the minimum wage did not cause unemployment. An implication was that labor unions did not cause unemployment by forcing up wages.

Killing suicide

By William Blum

Suicide bombers have become an international tragedy. One cannot sit in a restaurant or wait for a bus or go for a walk downtown, in Afghanistan or Pakistan or Iraq or Russia or Syria and elsewhere without fearing for one’s life from a person walking innocently by or a car that just quietly parked nearby. The Pentagon has been working for years to devise a means of countering this powerful weapon.

What ifs

By Missy Comley Beattie

On February 2, the Super Bowl opened with a military recruitment prompt, a freedom flyover. This propaganda extravaganza occurred just hours after an announcement—that Philip Seymour Hoffman was dead. The actor was found with an ultimate freedom syringe in his

Wednesday

The US’s dirty modus operandi in the Middle East

By Dr. Ismail Salami

The 9/11 incident has polarized global politics into two distinct eras: pre-9/11 period and post-9/11 period with the latter wreaking havoc on the entire world, particularly on the Muslim world.

Putting Big Brother in the driver’s seat: V2V transmitters, black boxes & drones

By John W. Whitehead

Time to buckle up your seatbelts, folks. You’re in for a bumpy ride.

Our support of Israel

By Dave Alpert

Where are our tax dollars going? Israel receives over $3 billion annually and although most of it goes towards military weapons, we are indirectly supporting their apartheid and ethnic cleansing programs.

Moving beyond the corporate vision of sustainability

By Rajesh Makwana

The corporate capture of policymaking has dire implications for how we achieve sustainable development in the 21st century, and it must be strongly opposed in the coming years as deliberations on climate change and sustainable development reach important conclusions. Private sector influence over politics at the national level is already widely recognised, but the extent to which powerful industries are able to influence global negotiations on some of the world’s most pressing problems is far less reported by the media or discussed in the public sphere.

United States of Paranoia lives and thrives

By Lisa Simeone

As I wrote last week, our DHS overlords were fretting about Terroristy Toothpaste Bombs. Well, now their paranoia is complete: along with their bumbling handmaiden, the TSA, they’ve banned all—all, mind you—toothpaste, deodorant, hairspray, baby powder, and whatever other liquid, aerosol, powder, gel personal grooming substances you can think of, from carry-on luggage for flights headed to the Olympics in Sochi, Russia. (And let’s not forget those terrorist cupcakes!)

Thursday

An elegantly simple way to revolutionize government

By Carmen Yarrusso

What started as a somewhat complex mathematical analysis of the game of politics using game theory (the mathematical study of strategic decision making) has evolved years later into an extraordinarily simple idea that would revolutionize government at all levels.

Unseemly Western interference in Ukraine

By Linda S. Heard

If Ukraine’s President Viktor Yanukovych feels as though the world’s on his shoulders, who can blame him when his country is caught in a tug of war between the US and Europe on the one side and Russia on the other. Captured in the middle are the Ukrainian people, themselves divided on which way to jump.

TSA’s latest rule change: STEBs to the rescue!

By Lisa Simeone

As I so often say, you can’t make this stuff up. Reality is so absurd, so surreal, that anything you could come up with in fiction would pale in comparison.

Karma: The elephant in YOUR room

By Philip A Farruggio

One of the greatest books this writer has ever read was the “Autobiography of a Yogi” by Paramahansa Yogananda.

A historical and philosophical perspective on Islam

By Jim Miles

In his introduction, Eric Walberg states, “The main purpose of this book is to help the reader to understand the alternative map which Islam offers.” This is both a literal and figurative map, an alternative to the imperial and neo-colonial boundaries that divide the Islamic world, and an alternative viewpoint to that of the imperial driver of capitalism. This offer includes “realigning ourselves with Nature, and rediscovering humanities’’ spiritual evolutionary path … without abandoning the vital role of reason.”

Friday

Tea Party longs for an America that never was

By Jerry Mazza

This book tells the story of the centuries-long struggle over the meaning of the nation’s founding, including the never-ending battle waged by the Tea Party, Glenn Beck, Sarah Palin, and evangelical Christians to “take back America.”

Illusions or delusions

By Dave Alpert

Being delusional is a psychotic state of being, where the individual cannot distinguish between reality and his/her personal fantasies, while holding on to illusions usually indicates one’s willingness to be deceived. Living in the U.S., it is often hard to understand whether we are dealing with mass illusions or delusions.

Washington-orchestrated protests are destabilizing Ukraine

By Paul Craig Roberts

The protests in the western Ukraine are organized by the CIA, the US State Department, and by Washington- and EU-financed Non-Governmental Organizations (NGOs) that work in conjunction with the CIA and State Department. The purpose of the protests is to overturn the decision by the independent government of Ukraine not to join the EU.

Preserving the Abu Ghraib culture: The harrowing abuse of Iraqi women

By Ramzy Baroud

“When they first put the electricity on me, I gasped; my body went rigid and the bag came off my head,” Israa Salah, a detained Iraqi woman told Human Rights Watch (HRW) in her heartrending testimony.

Playing the Al-Qaeda card to the last Iraqi

By Nicola Nasser

International, regional and internal players vying for interests, wealth, power or influence are all beneficiaries of the “al-Qaeda threat” in Iraq and in spite of their deadly and bloody competitions they agree only on two denominators, namely that the presence of the U.S.-installed and Iran–supported sectarian government in Baghdad and its sectarian al-Qaeda antithesis are the necessary casus belli for their proxy wars, which are tearing apart the social fabric of Iraqi society, disintegrating the national unity of Iraq and bleeding its population to the last Iraqi.

Week of February 3, 2014

Monday

Enough is enough: Fraud-ridden banks are not L.A.’s only option

By Ellen Brown, J.D.

“Epic in scale, unprecedented in world history.” That is how William K. Black, professor of law and economics and former bank fraud investigator, describes the frauds in which JPMorgan Chase (JPM) has now been implicated. They involve more than a dozen felonies, including bid-rigging on municipal bond debt; colluding to rig interest rates on hundreds of trillions of dollars in mortgages, derivatives and other contracts; exposing investors to excessive risk; failing to disclose known risks, including those in the Bernie Madoff scandal; and engaging in multiple forms of mortgage fraud.

The ‘Grimm’ facts about Staten Island’s congressman

By Wayne Madsen

(WMR)—Following President Obama’s January 28 State of the Union address, New York Republican congressman Michael Grimm not only threatened to throw Michael Scotto, a reporter for NY1 news, over a balcony in the Cannon House Office building but threatened to “break him in half … like a boy.” Grimm was upset over Scotto asking Grimm about allegations of campaign malfeasance. Grimm told Scotto, “Let me be clear to you, you ever do that to me again I’ll throw you off this fucking balcony.”

Advice to Perkins: Time to shut up!

By Bill Moyers and Michael Winship

There’s a rule of thumb in cyberspace etiquette known as Godwin’s Law, named after Mike Godwin, the Internet lawyer and activist who first came up with it. A variation of that law boils down to this: He who first compares the other side to Nazis loses, and the conversation is at an end. Unless you’re billionaire Tom Perkins, who seems dedicated to digging a deeper and deeper hole for himself.

The state of our nation: The greatest threat to our freedoms is the government

By John W. Whitehead

What was striking about this year’s State of the Union address was not the sheer arrogance of the president’s remarks, the staged nature of the proceedings and interactions, or the predictable posturing of the rebuttals, but the extent to which the members of the various branches of government—President Obama, Congress, the Supreme Court, and the assorted government agencies—are just one big, brawling, noisy, semi-incestuous clan.

Ten principles to guide the young activist

By Ramzy Baroud

In a recent radio interview with a National Public Radio affiliate in Juneau, Alaska, I was asked if I had advice for a 16-year-old Palestinian student, Haitham. He had just arrived in the US as part of a school exchange program, and, admirably, began reaching out to his peers in his and other schools to teach them about Palestine, its people and its ongoing struggle for freedom and rights.

Tuesday

50 reasons we should fear the worst from Fukushima

Part One of a two-part series

By Harvey Wasserman

Fukushima’s missing melted cores and radioactive gushers continue to fester in secret.

An eloquent speech about the State of the Union Address

By Richard John Stapleton

Kshama Sawant, recently elected to the city council of Seattle, Washington in my opinion knows how to say what needs to be said about our current state of economic affairs in the US. She also knows how to win a political race in Seattle, and let’s hope many others can follow her lead throughout the US.

Why is the Fed tapering?

By Paul Craig Roberts and Dave Kranzler

On January 17, 2014, we explained “The Hows and Whys of Gold Price Manipulation.” In former times, the rise in the gold price was held down by central banks selling gold or leasing gold to bullion dealers who sold the gold. The supply added in this way to the market absorbed some of the demand, thus holding down the rise in the gold price.

Freedom Rider: State of the Union: Awful

By Margaret Kimberley

The Constitution requires the president to “ … from time to time give to Congress information of the State of the Union… .” Regardless of what the framers of the constitution intended, this event has devolved into empty theatrics, worthless punditry and outright lies.

Forging a Socialist-Islamist alliance

By William T. Hathaway

Most western Middle East experts see Islam as a problem for the West—a source of terrorism, religious fanaticism, unwanted immigrants—and they see their job as helping to change the Middle East so it’s no longer a problem for us. Eric Walberg, however, recognizes that this is another instance of the Big Lie.

Wednesday

Making Iowa into a war zone

National Guard poised to attack from Des Moines airport

By Brian Terrell

The F-16 jets of the Iowa Air National Guard that formerly buzzed the city of Des Moines have disappeared and we are told that their base at the Des Moines International Airport is in the process of refitting into a command center for unmanned aerial vehicles, UAVs, commonly called drones.

Is lethal injection really more humane?

By Martha Rosenberg and Robert Wilbur

Last week, a third inmate died by lethal injection in Missouri in as many months. Herbert Smulls, convicted of a 1991 murder, was executed late Wednesday night, after the Supreme Court denied his last-minute appeal.

Super Bowl, Schmuperbowl

By Jerry Mazza

The 2013 NFL season has come to a close, and, after all the hype ending in a way that no one was expecting. Super Bowl XLVIII was expected to be an incredibly close game between the league’s best defense in the Seattle Seahawks and the NFl’s best offense in the Denver Broncos. Instead, the Seahawks completely dominated the game in almost every positional battle, winning 43–8.

Pets are no more than discarded kitchen chairs in Pennsylvania

By Walter Brasch

In Johnstown, two abandoned puppies died from starvation and freezing weather in an unoccupied house.

50 years after the Beatles: Isn’t it time for another political & cultural revolution?

By John W. Whitehead

It’s been 50 years since the Beatles—John Lennon, Paul McCartney, George Harrison and Ringo Starr—first landed in America on Feb. 7, 1964, and the news media is awash with nostalgic tributes to the band that “changed everything.” The Grammys will be saluting the Beatles with a 2-hour star-studded tribute. JFK Airport plans to dedicate a historical marker to commemorate the moment the four lads from Liverpool arrived on a Pan Am flight, to be greeted by hordes of screaming fans. And all across the country, including in New York City, conferences, tribute band performances, and reenactments will pay homage to Beatlemania and their music.

Thursday

We need to end the disastrous failure of the ‘war on terror’

By Nicolas J S Davies

Twelve years into America’s “war on terror,” it is time to admit that it has failed catastrophically, unleashing violence, war and instability in an “arc of terror” stretching from West Africa to the Himalayas and beyond. If we examine the pretext for all this chaos, that it could possibly be a legitimate or effective response to terrorism, it quickly becomes clear that it has been the exact opposite, fueling a global explosion of terrorism and a historic breakdown of law and order.

Antidotes to cyber industrialization and the swarm culture

By John Stanton

Get the cure before you become part of the swarm.

Ukraine is a neocon testing ground for Russia

By Wayne Madsen

Make no mistake about it, Ukraine’s troubles, engineered from outside of the country by the usual troika of the European Union “securocrats” who are beholden to the interests of the United States and NATO, George Soros-funded and U.S. non-governmental organization-trained street and social media provocateurs, and the Central Intelligence Agency and its diplomat-spies, is a template for what the West has planned for Russia.

Salt and terror in Afghanistan

By Kathy Kelly

Two weeks ago in a room in Kabul, Afghanistan, I joined several dozen people, working seamstresses, some college students, socially engaged teenagers and a few visiting internationals like myself, to discuss world hunger. Our emphasis was not exclusively on their own country’s worsening hunger problems. The Afghan Peace Volunteers, in whose home we were meeting, draw strength from looking beyond their own very real struggles.

The uncontrolled opposition

By Gilad Atzmon

If you really want to understand the world we are living in, you better stick with the Zionist media. The Jerusalem Post will provide you with the names of the Jews who own the planet. The British Jewish Chronicle will teach you about arch pedophile Jimmy Seville’s ties with Israel. Haaretz will even let me speak about all those topics The Guardian (Of Zion) is there to shamelessly suppress.

Friday

American men worried about their low-T?

By Jerry Mazza

It took the New York Times to take a look at a serious symptom befalling men all over the United States in the last few decades. Men’s average testosterone levels have been dropping, it noted, by at least 1 percent a year, according to a 2006 study in The Journal of Clinical Endocrinology and Metabolism.

Iraq near implosion: The ‘bad years’ are back

By Ramzy Baroud

As U.S. Secretary of State John Kerry hurried to his helicopter ready to take off at the end of a visit to Iraq last year, it was becoming clearer that the Americans have lost control of a country they wished to mold to their liking. His departure on March 24, 2013 was the conclusion of a ‘surprise’ visit meant to mark the 10th anniversary of the US invasion of Iraq. Ten years prior, the US had stormed Baghdad, unleashing one of the 20th century’s most brutal and longest conflicts. Since then, Iraq has not ceased to bleed.

Cornering a brave Palestinian man of peace

By Nicola Nasser

Palestinian President Mahmoud Abbas stands now at a crossroads of his people’s national struggle for liberation and independence as well as of his political life career, cornered between the rock of his own rejecting constituency and the hard place of his Israeli occupying power and the US sponsors of their bilateral negotiations, which were resumed last July 29, despite his minesweeping concessions and backtracking “on all his red lines.”

What is supply-side economics?

By Paul Craig Roberts

Supply-side economics is an innovation in macroeconomic theory and policy. It rose to prominence in congressional policy discussions in the late 1970s in response to worsening Phillips Curve trade-offs between inflation and unemployment. The postwar Keynesian demand management policy had broken down. The attempts to stimulate employment brought higher rates of inflation, and attempts to curtail inflation resulted in higher rates of unemployment.

Homeland Security bulletin: Terroristy toothpaste is a new threat

By Lisa Simeone

Every day, this country becomes more and more like something out of The Onion. I know it’s a cliché to say you can’t make this sh*t up, but the fact is you can’t make this sh*t up.

Week of January 27, 2014

Monday

The good, the bad, and the ugly in Syria talks

By Dr. Ismail Salami

A five-minute audio message by al-Qaeda leader Ayman al-Zawahri went viral on the internet in which he enjoins the rebels in Syria to end their infighting and focus their energies on battling against President Bashar al-Assad’s forces.

There’s cold and then there’s the Polar Vortex

By Jerry Mazza

I’ve just come back from a walk in the 7-degree temperature of New York City. I walked uptown ten blocks and then back downtown and I feel frozen, literally.

Train derailments another of fracking’s problems

By Walter Brasch

The derailment of a 101-car CSX freight train on a bridge in a densely-populated part of Philadelphia this past week should be yet another warning to politicians who have become cheerleaders for oil and gas fracking.

How economists and policymakers murdered our economy

By Paul Craig Roberts

The economy has been debilitated by the offshoring of middle class jobs for the benefit of corporate profits and by the Federal Reserve’s policy of Quantitative Easing in order to support a few oversized banks that the government protects from market discipline. Not only does QE distort bond and stock markets, it threatens the value of the dollar and has resulted in manipulation of the gold price.

Toxic: Avarice and sociopathy

By Missy Comley Beattie

After the move to Baltimore in the ‘80s, we drove to Kentucky at least six times a year to visit family. I remember the landscape and skyline of Kanawha River Valley, now appropriately called Chemical Valley, and of course that stretch of interstate highway carved into West Virginia towns that include Nitro, Institute, and Charleston. Remember because of the odor. Ashland, Kentucky’s across the state line, another area where haze drifted through the air, settling in and on the ground, water, clothing, skin, and mucous membranes.

Tuesday

Why the Trans-Pacific Partnership is a bad idea

By Richard John Stapleton

H. Ross Perot, the independent candidate for US president in 1992, said if NAFTA, the North American Free Trade Agreement, were passed you would hear a “giant sucking sound” as jobs left the US for Mexico.

More drugs whose dangerous risks emerged only after Big Pharma made its money

By Martha Rosenberg

In recent years, Hollywood has been perturbed by the “tweet factor.” If a movie is a dog, people leaving the theater tweet other people that it is a dog and it fails at the box office. Unfortunately, when a prescription drug is a dog that causes risky side effects, the word often doesn’t get out for years, allowing Big Pharma to make money anyway.

A state of war

By Dave Alpert

The ruling class or those who own this country, with the help of our duly elected officials, have declared war on working folks. How else can one explain their resistance to raising the minimum wage, their attack on a mediocre health care program (Obamacare) which clearly does not solve the problem of affordable health care insurance for all our citizens, their resistance to extending the unemployment insurance necessary for families to survive during these hard times, their desire to destroy the safety net that we have all benefitted from (social Security, Medicare, and Medicaid), their push to privatize education, prisons, and the military so that their friends can add millions of dollars to their already exorbitant wealth?

Freedom Rider: The Burglary and COINTELPRO

By Margaret Kimberley

In 1971, eight anti-war activists calling themselves the Citizens Committee to Investigate the FBI plotted to break into an FBI field office located in Media, Pennsylvania. They knew that the government was conducting a massive spying effort against American citizens and they were determined to find and publicly present their evidence.

‘Take me out to the ball game’—so I can be groped?

By Lisa Simeone

Ah, well, it was only a matter of time. Anybody with a brain knew it was only a matter of time.

Wednesday

NAFTA and the next phase of North American integration

By Dana Gabriel

In preparation for the upcoming North American Leaders Summit, which will be held in Toluca, Mexico, on February 19, U.S. Secretary of State John Kerry recently held a meeting with his Canadian and Mexican counterparts.

‘The Last War Crime’: Censored movie envisions Cheney indictment

By Kéllia Ramares-Watson

The independent movie “The Last War Crime” begins with a docudrama presentation of the events of September 11, 2001, using actual quotations where available, actual NYPD helicopter footage the production team had to sue to get, and using dramatic license to fill in the blanks where necessary. The film then transitions to an entirely fictional section in which the writer, producer and director, a person known only as The Pen, speculates on what would happen if a courageous US district attorney, who stumbles on a trail of evidence leading to Dick Cheney as the mastermind behind the torture that has occurred in Iraq, struggles to do something about what he has found out.

So long, Pete & Toshi Seeger, it’s been amazingly great to know you

By Harvey Wasserman

Toshi and Pete Seeger defy description except through the sheer joy and honor it was to know them, however briefly.

Pete Seeger (1919–2014): He changed the world one song at a time

By John W. Whitehead

Pete Seeger, the 94-year-old activist-singer-songwriter who tried to change the world with every note he uttered, has died, and we are all the poorer for it.

An empire of drones and robots

By James Hall

Is there any doubt that America’s foreign policy, based upon maintaining a global empire, actually makes us less safe? The misgiving is that such intercession has any actual benefits to the citizens of the country. What once was a respected leadership role of non-interventionism in international affairs, has become a dominating imperium for worldwide control and subjugation. Exporting the “land of the free” is a myth, especially when domestic freedom is a dying memory. Internationalists tell us that military and surveillance drone technology promises enhanced security, with little concern for collateral damage or loss of innocent life. However, the facts do not bear out such claims.

Thursday

Folk legend and activist Pete Seeger dies at 94

By Jerry Mazza

The banjo-playing troubadour was blacklisted during the McCarthy era for his political views. But Seeger continued being an activist and folk singer all of his life. He died at a New York hospital Monday night at age 94. His grandson, Kitama Cahill-Jackson said the American musical legend passed after six days in the hospital.

Pete Seeger: Beating flagpoles into ploughshares

By Michael Winship

Not only was it sad to hear the news Tuesday morning of Pete Seeger’s passing but startling to realize that it was forty-five long years ago that we first met. It was in 1969, at Georgetown University, when I was a callow college freshman and he already was a legend among folk music lovers and political activists.

Americans have been brainwashed into submission

By Dave Alpert

The definition of submission is “the act of submitting to the power of another or the act of accepting the authority or control of someone else.”

Save our cities … cut the real fat!

By Philip A Farruggio

Once we who do not earn over one million dollars a year wake up, real ‘hope and change’ will occur.

Alec Baldwin’s infant daughter—‘randomly selected’?

By Lisa Simeone

A story came out Tuessday about American actor Alec Baldwin, who apparently sent a tweet saying that his 5-month-old daughter had been randomly selected for a pat-down.

Friday

To bee or not to bee

By Jerry Mazza

A friend of mine from advertising, Richard Tucker, now working as a freelance producer, sent me a funny email the other morning with a huge bee on it. The headline reads “If I Die You Die,” which in advertising generally means, “Duck, a blood bath is coming;” or perhaps it’s a metaphor for the world of people. Richard is a very clever fellow.

How junk economists help the rich impoverish the working class

By Paul Craig Roberts

A few days ago, I explained how economists and policymakers destroyed our economy for the sake of short-term corporate profits from jobs offshoring and financial deregulation.—American crisis

By Linh Dinh

Though Thomas Paine galvanized this country into being and gave it its very name, the United States of America, there is almost no trace of him here. In Philadelphia, where he spent his most significant years, there is a Thomas Paine Plaza, but it is barely marked as such, with no statue of the man. Instead, one finds a bronze likeness of Frank Rizzo, of all people, and a Jacques Lipchitz sculpture that Rizzo once compared to a dropped load of plaster. Composed of torturous human forms holding up some insufferable burden, it’s titled “Government of the People,” though walking by it for decades, I actually thought it was a Holocaust memorial.

Hate the super rich

By Joel S. Hirschhorn

There are times when hatred is a needed, logical and moral stance to take. Evil, injustice and corruption are fine examples of what to appropriately hate.

Good night, Pete Seeger

By Ben Tanosborn

Doesn’t everyone have at least a song with special significance … a telltale from some event or happening in the past? The song “Goodnight, Irene” has that significance for me; more specifically the version sang by The Weavers in the ‘50s, my unannounced introduction to Pete Seeger, the folk singer, as a Weaver. It would be a decade later, however, that I would learn about this later-to-be iconic singer-songwriter and, more importantly for me, his sociopolitical activist persona.

Week of January 20, 2014

Monday

From austerity to prosperity

Why I am running for California treasurer

By Ellen Brown, J.D.

Governor Jerry Brown and his staff are exchanging high-fives over balancing California’s budget, but the people on whose backs it was balanced are not rejoicing. The state’s high-wire act has been called “the ultimate in austerity budgets.”

Amnesty International USA says NSA revisions fall short

By Mary Shaw

After months of revelations and controversy, President Obama has called for some changes to the NSA’s surveillance program.

Israel, a democratic state?

By Dave Alpert

Ilan Pappe is an Israeli historian and socialist activist. He is a professor with the College of Social Sciences and International Studies at the University of Exeter in the United Kingdom, director of the university’s European Centre for Palestine Studies, and co-director of the Exeter Centre for Ethno-Political Studies.

From private to public profit: We need a new deck, not another new deal

By Frank Scott

The “new reality” spoken of above was old capitalist private profit-public loss economics. It only seemed new to those raised in a time that averted total systemic collapse under what is now being called “unbridled capitalism,” by those who still seem to think a terminal threatening pandemic can be treated with Band Aids, aspirin and cough syrup. Getting people to believe that is part of the selling job that seems to have succeeded among consumers still under the total control of corporate mind management. Their numbers are shrinking.

Distracted and sidetracked

By Missy Comley Beattie

“The world is mourning the passing of Ariel Sharon.” Yes, that’s what I read, and perhaps my reaction is insensitive, especially since I’ve mourned and still mourn with what feels like an evisceration. But this mourning of Sharon by the world seems strange. After all, he was in a coma eight years. Did the world anticipate his recovery, say somewhere during year nine?

Tuesday

Alberta tarsands projects: Canada’s Hiroshima

By Eric Walberg

Canadian rock legend Neil Young has taken to the road with a mission. Sunday night, January 12, he laid down the gauntlet on national TV, calling the Canadian government “completely out of control” as he began his “Honour the Treaties” tour in Toronto. His goal is to help First Nations in their fight against the expanding tarsands projects in Alberta. To the government, “Money is number one. Integrity isn’t even on the map.”

Fantasists undermine Egypt’s forward march

By Linda S. Heard

The referendum on Egypt’s new constitution passed without any serious incident, despite threats from the Muslim Brotherhood which Egypt has branded ‘terrorist.’

How shrewd this empire be!

By Philip A Farruggio

The highly controlled mainstream news always does the bidding of our Military Industrial Empire … always! As most folks should know, there is this constitutional caveat called sequestration that requires cuts in federal spending, to help balance budgets.

The boozy, but not newsy, mass media

By Walter Brasch

The Big Story this past week was the Golden Globes awards.

The newest depth of depravity

By William T. Hathaway

There it goes, disappearing into extinction, that fine old mark of punctuation, the comma of direct address. Every time I read an email that starts “Hi William,” I wince. Deep within me lurks a reactionary grammarian who insists on a comma separating the name of the person from what is being said to them. At first I tried to convince myself that in the salutation of an email the missing comma isn’t important. After all, the meaning is clear.

Wednesday

Why are Christie and the Kochs in my driveway?

It’s time to subpoena the Committee for Our Children’s Future

By Greg Palast

Far more insidious, more corrosive and dangerous than the Governor of New Jersey playing traffic warden is the story of Gov. Chris Christie’s secret meetings with a gaggle of billionaires––and the legality of the spending by the front organization set up following these hidden hugger-muggers.

Gates’s “Duty” is obfuscation: now, then, and in the future

By Wayne Madsen

In typical fashion for a member of the CIA’s Bush-Clinton-Obama network of U.S. political leaders who would have never reached their respective pinnacles of power, save for the fact that they were all groomed by the powers who run Langley, former Secretary of Defense Robert Gates is supposedly “telling all” in his book, “Duty: Memoirs of a Secretary at War.”

Obama’s lies, NSA spies, and the Sons of Liberty: Will You choose dangerous freedom or peaceful slavery?

By John W. Whitehead

President Obama has managed, with singular assistance from Congress and the courts, to mangle the Constitution through repeated abuses, attacks and evasions.

No escape from surveillance

By Paul Balles

Judging from all the reports, America’s National Security Agency (NSA) can do just about anything involving the communication of just about anyone.

A must read study of events within Israel and the Middle East

By Jim Miles

“Why Israel?” is a large work of enormous value for the study of events within Israel and the Middle east. The title question is answered relatively easy, as it is one of the many counters that Israeli supporters use to try and divert attention away from their transgressions. Yes, there are many other states in the world where racism is evident, where oppression and some form of apartheid is applied.

Thursday

A taste of the segregated South

By Jerry Mazza

A long time ago, 1958, ’57, when I was a young accordionist, 16 or 17, I got a road job with a quintet of dance musicians. I was recommended by my teacher, an excellent musician himself. It seems a friend of his and his band leader, Ted Huston, just had his accordionist quit cold on him. They didn’t get along. I spoke to Huston on the phone, he seemed okay. He said he’d send me the band’s book of arrangements to study. He played piano and wrote the arrangements and would be willing to take a chance on me based on my teacher’s recommendation. Huston said he’f send me a plane ticket to Birmingham, Alabama, where the band was headed.

End poverty in California

By Cindy Sheehan

California Governor Jerry Brown is going around the world with one simple, yet simply wrong message, “California is Back.” The problems with this statement is that it is false and that Jerry Brown is obviously out of touch with the people of the state that he “governs.”

America in denial: Width and breadth of today’s poverty

By Ben Tanosborn

Last week, I read Daniel Weeks’ article, “Poverty vs. Democracy in America,” which appears in The Atlantic’s January 2014 issue. As much as I respect Weeks’ advocacy for trying to clean American politics with the clear baptismal waters of democracy, and the many valid points he brings forth in this article, I feel very strongly that we, Americans, are time and again totally missing the point. Mr. Weeks included!

When net neutrality becomes programmed censorship

By James Hall

The worst fears of all free speech proponents are upon us. The Verizon suit against the Federal Communications Commission, appellate decision sets the stage for a Supreme Court review. The Wall Street Journal portrays the ruling in financial terms: “A federal court has tossed out the FCC’s “open Internet” rules, and now Internet service providers are free to charge companies like Google and Netflix higher fees to deliver content faster.”

Should Egypt’s army chief run for president?

By Linda S. Heard

Egypt’s interim government is doing all in its power to take the country forward despite gnats within and without biting its heels to drag the nation backwards.

Friday

Harper drips platitudes, hypocrisy, double standards and lies in Knesset

By Jim Miles

Canada’s Conservative leader, Stephen Harper, spoke Monday in front of the Israeli Knesset. It was a short speech, beginning with homilies, platitudes, and economic references and then turned towards the righteous values he deems paramount in both Canada and Israel.

US-Israel strange but ‘stable’ alliance: US Senate awaits Israeli instructions

By Ramzy Baroud

Israel is often viewed by Washington politicians as the most ‘stable’ ally in the Middle East. But stability from the American perspective can mean many things. Lead amongst them is that the ‘ally’ must be unconditionally loyal to the diktats of the US administration. This rule has proven to be true since the United States claimed a position of ascendency, if not complete hegemony over many regions of the world since World War II. Israel, however, remained an exception.

If spring comes can winter be far behind?

Delhi between the consumerist carnival and the outburst of the excluded

By Shreesha Udupa

Virtually for more than thirty hours, the provincial government of the capital city of India was being run from the streets: it was a moment when a ruling government had taken recourse to protests. The cabinet had met on the pathways; the chief minister had slept on the roads of a city which he governed.

American police brutality and a clueless judge

By Lisa Simeone

Behold the words of an American judge, who, upon discovering the type of police brutality that goes on in this country every day, is shocked: “Defendant’s motion describes facts so extreme and unusual that this can truly be deemed sui generis,” Judge Steven M. Statsinger wrote.

The sharing economy: a short introduction to its political evolution

By Adam Parsons

In recent years, the concept and practice of sharing resources is fast becoming a mainstream phenomenon across North America, Western Europe and other world regions. The Internet is awash with articles and websites that celebrate the vast potential of sharing human and physical assets, in everything from cars and bicycles to housing, workplaces, food, household items, and even time or expertise. According to most general definitions that are widely available online, the sharing economy leverages information technology to empower individuals or organisations to distribute, share and re-use excess capacity in goods and services. The business icons of the new sharing economy include the likes of Airbnb, Zipcar, Lyft, Taskrabbit and Poshmark, although hundreds of other for-profit as well as non-profit organisations are associated with this burgeoning movement that is predicated, in one way or another, on the age-old principle of sharing.

Week of January 13, 2014

Monday

Sequestration means deadly cuts to Native American Treaty Programs

By Jerry Mazza

In hearing and seeing about sequester cuts from Native American elders on Abby Martin’s “Breaking the Set” (RT-com, Parts 1 &2), I was shocked to find these cuts seem to be an existential threat to the Sioux. They are living now on an underfunded Indian Health Service (IHS) that all Americans, particularly South Dakotans, should know is in serious danger. Thus, education is the alternative to Indian elders to the intense damage done in their communities by alcohol, drugs, overcrowding, high suicide rates and unemployment, and leaving aged grandparents to raise and educate children. Read on …

Toll of U.S. sailors devastated by Fukushima radiation continues to climb

By Harvey Wasserman

The roll call of U.S. sailors who say their health was devastated when they were irradiated while delivering humanitarian help near the stricken Fukushima nuke is continuing to soar.

Defending good or evil, depending on which side you are on

By Paul Balles

Typically, people argue to defend what they do (or believe), attacking opposing views where they can, and ignoring arguments they haven’t considered.

The Saudi bull in an Arab china shop

By Nicola Nasser

Obsessed with the “Iran threat,” which leads to its warmongering in Syria, Saudi Arabia is acting like a bull in a china shop, wreaking regional havoc in an already Arab fragile political environment and creating what George Joffe’ of Cambridge University’s Centre of International Studies, on December 30, called the “second Arab cold war,” the first being the Saudi-led cold war with the Pan-Arab Egypt of Gamal Abdul Nasser, since the 1960s.

Starving refugees: How we disowned Palestinians in Syria

By Ramzy Baroud

A worst case scenario is unfolding in Syria, and Palestinian refugees, particularly in the Yarmouk refugee camp, are paying a heavy price for Syria’s cruelest war. They are starving, although there can be no justification, nor logistical explanation for why they are dying from hunger.

Tuesday

Ethiopian hand in South Sudan

By Thomas C. Mountain

Ethiopia has been active in destabilizing South Sudan and has been repeatedly caught providing arms to “rebels” in the Jonglei and Unity States in the north of the country during the past year.

No jobs for Americans

By Paul Craig Roberts

The alleged recovery took a direct hit from Friday’s payroll jobs report. The Bureau of Labor Statistics reported that the economy created 74,000 net new jobs in December.

America is on the wrong side of history

By William Blum

The horrors reported each day from Syria and Iraq are enough to make one cry; in particular, the atrocities carried out by the al-Qaeda types: floggings; beheadings; playing soccer with the heads; cutting open dead bodies to remove organs just for mockery; suicide bombers, car bombs, the ground littered with human body parts; countless young children traumatized for life; the imposition of sharia law, including bans on music … What century are we living in? What millennium? What world?

Life in the electronic concentration camp: The many ways that you’re being tracked, catalogued and controlled

By John W. Whitehead

What is most striking about the American police state is not the mega-corporations running amok in the halls of Congress, the militarized police crashing through doors and shooting unarmed citizens, or the invasive surveillance regime which has come to dominate every aspect of our lives. No, what has been most disconcerting about the emergence of the American police state is the extent to which the citizenry appears content to passively wait for someone else to solve our nation’s many problems. Unless Americans are prepared to engage in militant nonviolent resistance in the spirit of Martin Luther King, Jr., and Gandhi, true reform, if any, will be a long time coming.

Research objects

By Missy Comley Beattie

The human condition is absurd.

Wednesday

To my corrupt senators upon their Trans Pacific Partnership vote

An open letter to Senators Mark R. Warner and Tim Kaine

By Jack Balkwill

I am writing about your vote on the Trans Pacific Partnership (TPP), a plan by transnational corporations to undermine democracy around the globe.

Upper 1 percent plan total control of Internet news

By Wayne Madsen

With the impending demise of World Wide Web “net neutrality,” which has afforded equal access for website operators to the Internet, the one percent of billionaire investors are busy positioning themselves to take over total control of news reporting on the Internet.

Seven drugs whose risks surfaced after they made billions

Hit and run pharma marketing makes money at consumers’ expense

By Martha Rosenberg

Have you ever noticed how warnings about dangerous prescription drugs always seem to surface after the drug is no longer marketed and its patent has run out? As in after the fact? Whether it’s an FDA advisory or a trial lawyer solicitation about harm that may have been done to you, the warnings are always belated and useless. If a drug people took four years ago may have given them liver damage, why didn’t the FDA tell them then? Why didn’t the FDA recall the drug or better yet, not approve it in the first place?

Washington’s millionaire boyz club

By Michael Winship

Over the holidays, I was watching that old Marilyn Monroe comedy “How to Marry a Millionaire” on Turner Classic Movies (okay, I have no life). Now, a new report suggests (to me, at least) that if Hollywood were to produce a remake of that 1953 film, the variety of now politically incorrect tactics Ms. Monroe and her friends deploy to land a well-to-do partner could be reduced to one: start dating a member of Congress.

Talkin’ ‘bout a global revolution

By Adam Parsons

At the onset of 2014, many people are now anticipating the prospect of a ‘global revolution.’ The intense revolutionary fervour of 2011 may have dissipated in North America and much of Western Europe in the past couple of years, but a new geography of protest continues to shift and transmute in different countries and world regions—the million people on the streets of Brazil in June last year; the earlier defence of the commons in Istanbul’s Taksim Gezi Park; the indigenous uprising and student protests across Canada; the Ukraine demonstrations that are still under way.

Thursday

No more coddling the upper crust while regular folks starve & freeze!

By Dennis Rahkonen

Tea Party Republicans expose their false patriotism by routinely sabotaging American public welfare and the common good. Now they’ve taken that vicious proclivity to its worst extreme.

Music works to soothe the savage beast in Syria

By Jerry Mazza

Monday night, I went to Carnegie Hall for one of the most amazing concerts I’ve ever heard in my entire life. The concert was titled “Shostakovich for the Children of Syria” and all the proceeds will go to Doctors Without Borders/Médecins Sans Fronteres (MSF) to aid the ongoing debacle of violence going on there, which is encapsulated by Ramsy Baroud’s article, Assessing the conflict in Syria and Egypt, particularly in the first two pages, which will give you a feel for the chaos going on there.

Is Bill de Blasio a true liberal or a Wall St. puppet in sheep’s clothing?

By Dave Alpert

What does Bill de Blasio really stand for? While his rhetoric continues to inspire the possibility of change, his actions seem otherwise. It may be premature to cast a shadow on his promises but let’s take a look at some of de Blasio’s behavior.

New Jersey Governor Christie wants us to believe he was snookered

By Joel S. Hirschhorn

After having many positive views of New Jersey Governor Christie mainly because he seemed like a better kind of politician, maybe being someone the public could actually trust, I now see him as just another untrustworthy, dishonest politician.

How about some truth in labeling?

By Philip A Farruggio

You know, having been homebound for 9 days with the flu can really drive you crazy. Especially when you pass some of the time by ‘channel surfing ‘the mainstream boob tube. You go from the far right-wing Fox channels to the Democratic Party loving MSNBC, to the ‘We love em both’ CNN. Bottom line: all the mainstream media’s outlets serve the military industrial complex that even cold warrior President Eisenhower warned us of.

Friday

Will doping strike out baseball?

By Jerry Mazza

Wikipedia notes, “The use of banned performance-enhancing drugs in sports is commonly referred to as doping, particularly by the organizations that regulate sporting competitions. The use of drugs to enhance performance is considered unethical by most international sports organizations, including the International Olympic Committee, although ethicists have argued that it is not different from the use of new materials in the construction of suits and sporting equipment, which can also aid performance and give competitors an unfair advantage. The reasons for the ban are mainly the health risks of performance-enhancing drugs, the equality of opportunity for athletes, and the exemplary effect of drug-free sport for the public. Anti-doping authorities state that using performance-enhancing drugs goes against the “spirit of sport.”

The whitewashing of Ariel Sharon

By Ramzy Baroud

The death of former Israeli leader Ariel Sharon enlivened US media’s interest in the legacy of a man considered by many a war criminal, and by some a hero. In fact, the supposed heroism of Sharon was at the heart of CNN coverage of his death on January 11.

Door closes to open Internet, but all may not be lost

By Michael Winship

In the words of Howard Beale, the Mad Prophet of the Airwaves in the movie Network, “Woe is us! We’re in a lot of trouble!” And, as Beale would shout, we should be mad as hell.

African dictator at prayer breakfast admits to assassinating his enemies

By Wayne Madsen

Borrowing a leaf from the annual National Prayer Breakfast in Washington, DC, an event that brings together American presidents, federal judges, Cabinet members, congressmen, intelligence and military chiefs, and corporate executives, Rwanda’s dictatorial president Paul Kagame held his own Rwanda Leaders’ Fellowship Prayer Breakfast on January 12 in Kigali, the Rwandan capital. Kagame has been a frequent guest at the Washington prayer breakfast.

Americans and their hypocrisy over football

By Lisa Simeone

I’m 56 years old. Like most people my age, I’ve had to endure my share of bores at dinners and cocktail parties blathering on endlessly about their personal obsessions, not noticing the glazed look in the eyes of their interlocutors. These bores are usually men, though not always. And no subject gets them going quite like the testosterone-soaked game known as American football.

Week of January 6, 2014

Monday

Flying the unfriendly skies of United

By Jerry Mazza

December 22, pre-dawn, 6 A.M. the black town car appears at our door to whisk my wife, son, and me to Newark Liberty International Airport. We were flying to Sioux Falls for Christmas with our family.

Postcard from the end of America: Marcus Hook, PA

By Linh Dinh

First settled by Europeans in 1640, Marcus Hook was once called Chammassungh, Finland then Marrites Hoeck, from which the present name derives. The Hook, however, does serendipitously evoke its pirate past, when Blackbeard plied the Delaware, and one of his mistresses, Margaret, lived here, in a plank house still preserved.

Washington has discredited America

By Paul Craig Roberts

Years ago when I described the George W. Bush regime as a police state, right-wing eyebrows were raised. When I described the Obama regime as an even worse police state, liberals rolled their eyes. Alas! Now I am no longer controversial. Everybody says it.

Depth takes a holiday in mass media

By Walter Brasch

The mass media have a fixation upon throwing up lists.

Is peace obsolete?

By Missy Comley Beattie

I’d like to age in peace. Peacefully. I suppose this is impossible. And despite saying nothing surprises me anymore, I’m often outraged. I shouldn’t be astonished though by a resolution intro’d by Senators Robert Menendez, Chuck Schumer, and Mark Kirk that gives Israel unprecedented power and subverts the Constitution. After all, AIPAC’s influence on American foreign policy is no secret.

Tuesday

Vladimir Vladimirovich and the Grey Lady

By Robert Bonomo

Bill Keller, editorialist for The NY Times and former executive editor of the paper, has recently penned a strong attack on Vladimir Putin, arguing that Putin’s leadership “deliberately distances Russia from the socially and culturally liberal West,” describing the Kremlin’s policies as “laws giving official sanction to the terrorizing of gays and lesbians, the jailing of members of a punk protest group for offenses against the Russian Orthodox Church, the demonizing of Western-backed pro-democracy organizations as ‘foreign agents,’ expansive new laws on treason, limits on foreign adoptions.”

Manipulations rule the markets

By Paul Craig Roberts

The Federal Reserve’s announcement on December 18 that beginning in January its monthly purchases of mortgage-backed financial instruments and US Treasury bonds would each be cut by $5 billion is puzzling, as is the financial press’s account of the market’s response.

America’s political twerks

By Walter Brasch

When Muhammad Ali proclaimed, “I am the greatest,” we knew—and he knew—it would psyche out his opponents, get media attention, and receive a bigger box office. But, in the sport of boxing, Ali probably was the greatest.

Assessing the conflict in Syria and Egypt—the war continues

By Ramzy Baroud

2013 had expectedly been a terrible year for several Arab nations. It has been terrible because the promise of greater freedoms and political reforms has been reversed, most violently in some instances, by taking a few countries down the path of anarchy and complete chaos. Syria and Egypt are two cases in point.

Teach them to consider consequences for their actions

By Missy Comley Beattie

Last June 15, 16-year-old Ethan Couch turned the ignition of a Ford truck, drove 70 mph in a 40 mph zone, and killed four pedestrians who were working on a disabled vehicle on the side of the road. Couch had a blood alcohol level three times the legal limit for an adult. He tested positive for Valium. Among Couch’s seven passengers, two were critically injured—one so severely he is paralyzed and communicates by blinking his eyes. Sergio Molina’s parents are suing Couch and his father’s business (the Ford was owned by the company) for $20 million, the expected cost of their son’s care.

Wednesday

Father of “stop-and-frisk” takes charge of NYPD again

By Jerry Mazza

William Bratton was sworn in last Thursday as commissioner of the New York City Police Department, the largest in the nation, heralding a second term at the helm of the NYPD and his first under progressive new mayor Bill de Blasio.

100 years is enough: Time to make the Fed a public utility

By Ellen Brown, J.D.

December 23, 2013, marked the 100th anniversary of the Federal Reserve, warranting a review of its performance. Has it achieved the purposes for which it was designed?

Capitalism in crisis: Who are the REAL “takers”?

By Bernard Weiner

Capitalism is in crisis across the globe. When both the president of the United States and the pope take out after its worst manifestations within days of each other, you know there’s an internal time bomb inside this dysfunctional economic system.

2014 will bring more social collapse

By Paul Craig Roberts

2014 is upon us. For a person who graduated from Georgia Tech in 1961, a year in which the class ring showed the same date right side up or upside down, the 21st century was a science fiction concept associated with Stanley Kubrick’s 1968 film, “2001: A Space Odyssey.” To us George Orwell’s 1984 seemed so far in the future we would never get there. Now it is 30 years in the past.

Living on the edge

By Linda S. Heard

Lebanon, a country of little more than 10,000 square kilometers, squeezed between Israel and Syria, has been showered with nature’s gifts. Its people are educated, entrepreneurial, talented and family-oriented with an inherent joie de vie. Every Lebanese I’ve ever met said with pride that theirs is the finest country on earth and those in the Diaspora, including some of the nation’s finest minds forced to flee from violence, often have damp eyes when listening to the patriotic songs of Fairouz, remembering what could have been.

Thursday

A soulless, digitally concussed Western world

By John Stanton

The USA and European Union (EU) continue on their downward trajectory in the 14th year of the 21st Century. The perpetual state of war against terror, drugs, immigrants, the press and whistle-blowers moves on uninhibited. Another war, this time named Austerity, is being waged by USA and EU leaders against the middle and lower classes. Youth are particularly hard hit with the average unemployment rate in the EU at 23 percent. In the USA the figure is 17 percent, according to the Bureau of Labor Statistics. But never mind that.

Life in the emerging American police state

What’s in store for our freedoms in 2014?

By John W. Whitehead

In Harold Ramis’ classic 1993 comedy Groundhog Day, TV weatherman Phil Connors (played by Bill Murray) is forced to live the same day over and over again until he not only gains some insight into his life but changes his priorities. Similarly, as I illustrate in my book A Government of Wolves: The Emerging American Police State, we in the emerging American police state find ourselves reliving the same set of circumstances over and over again—egregious surveillance, strip searches, police shootings of unarmed citizens, government spying, the criminalization of lawful activities, warmongering, etc.—although with far fewer moments of comic hilarity.

Happy birthday, NAFTA

By Dave Alpert

“I believe we have made a decision now that will permit us to create an economic order in the world that will promote more growth, more equality, better preservation of the environment and a greater possibility of world peace. We are on the verge of a global economic expansion that is sparked by the fact that the United States, at this critical moment, decided that we would compete, not retreat. In a few moments, I will sign the North American Free Trade Act into law. NAFTA will tear down trade barriers between our three nations. It will create the world’s largest trade zone and create 200,000 jobs in this country by 1995 alone. The environmental and labor side agreements initiated by our administration will make this agreement a force for social progress as well as economic growth.”

Muslim Brotherhood rightly branded terrorist

By Linda S. Heard

If the international community was caught by surprise when Egypt’s government took the bold step of branding the Muslim Brotherhood, its affiliates and supporters “terrorist,” most Egyptians were anything but. In fact, many regretted that the decision had not been taken much earlier. The authorities folded under public pressure when a car bomb rocked the security headquarters in Mansoura on December 24, killing 15 and injuring 134. Enraged locals gathered at the smouldering site, demanding death penalty for the likely suspects—the Brothers—and resolved to drive them out of the area.

Dealing With the deluge

By Missy Comley Beattie

I didn’t know my son J was in Mexico until he wasn’t. He texted he’d landed safely in Texas and followed this with magnificent photos of Oaxaca’s coast.

Friday

“Knockout Game” hurts/kills innocent victims

By Jerry Mazza

Picture this. You’re a young guy in his 20s, an elderly woman in her 70s, a vet in his 40s down on his luck and some guy walks up to you and POW! He “roundhouses” you with a right or left and you’re down for the count or maybe for good. Knockout! That’s the new urban blight game gangs and solo thugs are playing with innocent people of all ages and genders, representing a new low in civility and a disregard for law and the safety of others.

The case of the missing recovery

By Paul Craig Roberts

Have you seen the economic recovery? I haven’t either. But it is bound to be around here somewhere, because the National Bureau of Economic Research spotted it in June 2009, four and one-half years ago.

Postcard from the end of America: Vineland, New Jersey

By Linh Dinh

On a drowsy, sputtering bus into Vineland, I glimpsed a 9/11 Memorial by the side of the road. Next to a flag pole, there was the Twin Towers at the height of a middling crotch. Fleetingly I thought of getting off at the next stop to scrutinize, but decided no, for it was clear I was only on the outskirts of town, and Vineland is vast, despite its modest population of only 60,000 souls.

2014: Failure of Palestinian Authority, BDS success to continue

By Ramzy Baroud

2013 was a year in which the so-called peace process charade was allowed to continue, leading Palestinians on yet another futile journey of broken promises. Meanwhile, the Israeli colonial project in the West Bank and East Jerusalem carried on unabated. But it was not entirely a year of doom and gloom either, for the global boycott campaign (BDS) has taken off like never before, surpassing the capricious Palestinian leadership and its confined political platforms.

Walking in an Anthropocene wonderland

By Phil Rockstroh

According to a recent, exhaustive study commissioned by the US Department of Energy and headed by a scientific team from the U.S. navy, by the summer of 2015, the Arctic Ocean could be bereft of ice, a phenomenon that will engender devastating consequences for the earth’s environment and every living creature on the planet.

Week of May 28, 2012

Cooperative banking in the Aquarian Age

Ellen Brown

According to both the Mayan and Hindu calendars, 2012 (or something very close) marks the transition from an age of darkness, violence and greed to one of enlightenment, justice, and peace. It’s hard to see that change just yet in the events relayed in the major media, but a shift does seem to be happening behind the scenes; and this is particularly true in the once-boring world of banking.

http://www.intrepidreport.com/archives/6048

Washington’s hypocrisies

Paul Craig Roberts

The US government is the second worst human rights abuser on the planet and the sole enabler of the worst—Israel. But this doesn’t hamper Washington from pointing the finger elsewhere.

http://www.intrepidreport.com/archives/6046

Memorial Day 2012: A lesson not yet learned

Walter Brasch

Today is Memorial Day, the last day of the three-day weekend. Veterans and community groups will remember those who died in battle and, as they have done for more than a century, will place small flags on graves.

http://www.intrepidreport.com/archives/6043 

On Memorial Day weekend, America reckons with torture

Bill Moyers and Michael Winship

Facing the truth is hard to do, especially the truth about ourselves. So Americans have been sorely pressed to come to terms with the fact that after 9/11 our government began to torture people, and did so in defiance of domestic and international law. Most of us haven’t come to terms with what that meant, or means today, but we must reckon with torture, the torture done in our name, allegedly for our safety.

http://www.intrepidreport.com/archives/6040 

It wouldn’t kill me to die

Missy Comley Beattie

A year and three months after the death of my husband Charles, I took a trip with Laura, my sister. Seated aboard a propeller plane and flying over water, we locked eyes. She said, “I really don’t like this.”

http://www.intrepidreport.com/archives/6038


Systemic politics: Donkey dung and elephant manure

Larry Pinkney

As the U.S. Empire unravels, its viciousness at home and abroad will increase expedientially. Systemic contradictions and the concomitant sham of ‘democracy’ as embodied by the corporate owned Democratic and Republican parties will become ever more obvious.

http://www.intrepidreport.com/archives/6069

Israel, US at loggerheads over Iran nuclear issue

Dr. Ismail Salami

While Iran and the six world powers wrapped up their talks on Thursday in an atmosphere apparently meant to resolve the nuclear issue, US Undersecretary of State for Political Affairs and top negotiator on Iran Wendy Sherman rushed to Tel Aviv to brief the Israeli officials on the new nuclear developments and “reaffirm our [US] unshakeable commitment to Israel’s security.”

http://www.intrepidreport.com/archives/6067

Facebook SOBs or … ‘don’t cry for me, Avaritia’

Ben Tanosborn

The sobs we have in mind are neither short, audible gasps of breath of those who are invested in Facebook stock, nor are they intended as a bastardly reference of those who, inside and/or outside of the company, put together and took to fruition this much-awaited IPO (Initial Public Offering). These mnemonic sobs we have in mind represent simply Shares-Of-Bubbly-Stock. For that’s what those 421.2 million shares of Facebook were: Overpriced, bubbly stock.

http://www.intrepidreport.com/archives/6065

Is the Whirling Dervish of TAPI politics finally spinning America’s way?

Peter Chamberlin

It had to eventually happen—Afghan politics have come full circle, and then some. It was only a matter of time before the TAPI pipe dream would once again be offered as a solution to the Afghan conflict. The Taliban are once again being handed the keys to the kingdom in exchange for partnering with Western oil giants as the means for ensuring TAPI pipeline security. The last time we heard the snake charmers make this offer was in 1996, when Marty Miller of Unocal tried to convince all the factions that the “pipeline was a conflict resolution process.” When this approach also failed to keep all parties satisfied, speculation arose that Unocal or another consortium partner gave secret support to the Taliban, in order to push-out the Northern Alliance forces of Ahmad Shah Massoud from their northern sanctuary, the location of the finalized pipeline route. What will happen this time, when the Taliban or the mega-corporations prove to be unmovable and the whole diplomatic episode is exposed as another charade? Karzai is a marked man, just as Rabbani before him was marked for termination by the medieval Taliban.

http://www.intrepidreport.com/archives/6058

Browbeating cyclops vs. Rambos

Linh Dinh

Whatever crimes, violations or discretions anyone admits to, he or she likely has done, is doing and will do worse. This is also true of governments. Washington can now snoop on your international emails and phone calls, without warrants, but do you seriously think they’d spare your domestic communications? Of course, not.

http://www.intrepidreport.com/archives/6055

Unholy alliance forming against Syria

Dr. Ismail Salami

Syria is bracing for more political chaos as all antagonistic forces appear to have entered into an unholy alliance to bring the government to its knees by ingeniously choreographing massacres and attributing them to the Syrian government, thereby turning the country into fertile soil for a US-led invasion.

http://www.intrepidreport.com/archives/6084

Of children and inkblots: Trayvon Martin and the psychopathology of whiteness

Tim Wise

Write this down if you need to.

http://www.intrepidreport.com/archives/6081

Disorganised moderates may gift Egypt to Islamists

Linda S. Heard

How on earth did the Muslim Brotherhood’s unprepossessing candidate manage to scoop the edge during the presidential election? That has to be the question on many Egyptian liberals’ lips these days. The organisation’s charismatic first choice, Khairat Shater, was disqualified by the electoral committee, leaving the majority of voters fairly certain that the Brotherhood was out of the race. How wrong they were!

http://www.intrepidreport.com/archives/6077

No need for NATO

Bob Fitrakis

The North Atlantic Treaty Organization (NATO) exists today not to defend against aggressive authoritarian Communism, but to steal resources from weaker non-European countries by military force. Its two most recent military actions made the May 2012 NATO Summit in Chicago a gathering of war criminals.

http://www.intrepidreport.com/archives/6075

Political pressure stopped Scott County biomass burner

Citizens packed meetings, confronted the mayor, ran for office

Linda Greene

On an unremarkable day in July 2009 the residents of Scottsburg and surrounding Scott County, in southern Indiana, read an unusual notice in the Scott County Journal.

http://www.intrepidreport.com/archives/6073

Hillary finally brings bureau of spy/diplomatic liaisons out of the closet

Peter Chamberlin

Hillary Clinton finally brings the secret military/State Dept. covert operations out into the open (SEE: Clinton Goes Commando, Sells Diplomats as Shadow Warriors). This is the logical outcome of a process started long ago, during the Reagan administration, when Congress put restrictions on the CIA’s shadow wars in Central America. It was then that this so-called “smart policy” began, thereafter, all of the CIA’s illegal operations were contracted out to private interests.

http://www.intrepidreport.com/archives/6108

Chicago NATO Summit: Obama showcases American fascism

Wayne Madsen

President Obama wanted to showcase his adopted hometown of Chicago to the leaders of 60 NATO members and partnership countries. Instead, with his former chief of staff Rahm Emanuel holding the political reins as mayor of Chicago, Obama showed the foreign heads of state and the international media a city in total police state lockdown.

http://www.intrepidreport.com/archives/6103

How the post office is being destroyed by a phony budget crisis

Congress, not the post office itself, is the problem

David Morris

As every 6-year-old learns, there is real and there is make believe. The massive Post Office deficit that is driving its management to commit institutional suicide by ending 6-day mail delivery, closing half of the nations’ 30,000 or so post offices and half its 500 mail processing centers, and laying off over 200,000 workers, is make believe.

http://www.intrepidreport.com/archives/6098

Freedom Rider: The lie of American democracy

Margaret Kimberley

Most Americans are convinced, mistakenly, that they live in a democratic nation. The idea of democracy is upheld with reverence, making it one of the most cherished of all mythologies, but its true meaning is obscured in a country where money is king. There have been many times in history when America was anything but democratic, when the country’s original inhabitants were slaughtered, or when millions were enslaved, or during the reign of Jim Crow and lynch law, or when women couldn’t vote. We are accustomed to thinking that because those days are over, we continue to make progress and that our country is improving over time.

http://www.intrepidreport.com/archives/6095

Religion and spirituality as the opiate of the masses

Carla Binion

When Karl Marx said “religion is the opiate of the masses” (or the “opium of the people”) he was referring to the idea that powerful politicians and corporate leaders rely on religion to keep the public complacent about social injustice and political corruption. Genuine spirituality, as opposed to religious dogma, doesn’t make people politically unaware and docile. However, when religion is misinterpreted as meaning the individual should live in denial and ignore the outer world, or when it becomes virulently authoritarian and anti-intellectual, it can create a passive, easy-to-manipulate populace.

http://www.intrepidreport.com/archives/6093

Is the NYPD exploiting the Etan Patz murder?

Jerry Mazza

Way back on May 25, 1979, New York City was shocked to its roots. A six-year old boy named Etan Patz went off to wait for the school bus for the first time, as his mother watched from the balcony of their residence, holding a cup of coffee, thinking those feelings any parent would feel on that first day. She had given Etan a dollar to buy a soda for his lunch. She went inside the residence before the bus came. Tragically, she never saw Etan again.

http://www.intrepidreport.com/archives/6127

Out of the mouths of babes: 12-year-old money reformer tops a million views

Ellen Brown

The YouTube video of 12-year-old Victoria Grant speaking at the Public Banking in America conference in April has gone viral, topping a million views on various websites.

http://www.intrepidreport.com/archives/6124

Starving and broke: Yemen’s renewed ‘War on Terror’

Ramzy Baroud

Yemeni forces continue to push against fighters affiliated with al-Qaeda. Their major victories come on the heels of the inauguration of Abd Rabbuh Mansur al-Hadi, who is now entrusted with the task of leading the country through a peaceful transition. A new constitution and presidential elections are expected by 2014.

http://www.intrepidreport.com/archives/6122

Root of evil

Rand Clifford

As such a useful tool of exchange, money is not inherently evil. Money can be a springboard to such evil as bailout-begging banks too monstrous to fail gambling with taxpayer wealth—you know, private profits, public risk. Casino financialization with taxpayers as a backstop. The $700 billion TARP bailout actually being a$23.7 trillion bailout. But the root of all evil is the human brain.

http://www.intrepidreport.com/archives/6119

Class or crass: India’s middle class

Rakhee Ghelani

One of the biggest culture shocks I am now experiencing relates to what is considered to be “class” or behaviour that represents economic and social status. It isn’t something I saw much of when I was backpacking, but now that I am settled into a rather middle class life in Mumbai, I am really struggling with what appears to be considered appropriate behaviour amongst the middle class here compared to what I have grown up with in Australia.

http://www.intrepidreport.com/archives/6117