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Links 2/15/12

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Apologies for thin links. I am attending the Bank of America settlement hearing in appellate court, which means I should have been in bed two hours ago. Please post the AM news stories I missed in comments for the benefit of fellow readers.

BOOM Goes the Ichthyosaur? Wired (hat tip Richard Smith)

Fukushima at Increased Earthquake Risk, Scientists Report Science Daily (hat tip reader Chuck L)

Invisibility’ Cloak Could Protect Buildings from Earthquakes Science Daily. Per Chuck L: “Maybe they can figure out a way to cloak nuclear plants.”

Greece and the return of the economic ‘death spiral’ Guardian (hat tip reader Scott)

Noam Chomsky: America’s Decline Is Real — and Increasingly Self-Inflicted Alternet (hat tip reader May S)

U.S. media takes the lead on Iran Glenn Greenwald

Confederacy-lite: The Oklahoma’s AG’s Civil War against the United States of America Bill Black

Mind-Boggling Nonsense from John Cochrane Economics of Contempt (hat tip Richard Smith)

Occupy’s amazing Volcker Rule letter Felix Salmon

Occupy the SEC Weighs In on the Volcker Rule BusinessWeek

John Paulson Sells Entire Stakes in Citi, BofA Bloomberg. No more hot hand, and he missed the settlement pop.

Is the $25 Billion Foreclosure Settlement a Stealth Bank Bailout? Time

Fun With Numbers: Foreclosure Fraud Settlement Figures Tough to Add Up Dave Dayen, Firedoglake

Is Wall Street ‘Castrated’ — Or Just Lying Low? Michael Hirsh

Antidote du jour:

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157 comments

    1. LeonovaBalletRusse

      Seal, this *Fleece the Pensioner* Scam was universal. When will the Boomers *get it*? Maybe after the *Settlement* gets finalized in actual print?

      1. Valissa

        really? I thought it was a brilliant photo idea! Those dogs cracked me up, with how how ferociously they were going after the ball… the bad-a** dog dude effect caused by the properties of the water… more friction/resistance triggering a more forceful jaw reach.

        1. MyLessThanPrimeBeef

          I don’t know about disgusting either.

          It’s all relative. It varies with different people and also with different dogs. Maybe some dogs will go, ‘wow, he’s so manly (or ‘dogly’ perhaps)!’

          1. LeonovaBalletRusse

            Do we see a couple who thrill to dog fights and cock fights here? The lust for violence expressed comes in many flavors.

          2. Valissa

            Leonova, that’s quite an attack statement, and completely uncalled for… who’s the one acting ferocious here?

          3. LeonovaBalletRusse

            Valissa, we at NC are free to express ourselves, free to disagree, or what’s an Open Forum for?

          4. Valissa

            @Leonova, I have noticed that you attack whenever someone has a different point of view or perspective than you do. That is verbal violence of a sort, though one common enough on the internet. SO I find this whole discussion quite ironic. I also observed that when you first started posting here you got attacked by others for your dramatic style, which I think people have gotten used to by now, and even come to appreciate. I too was more often attacked in the comments when I was new here. I would maybe say 3 sentences about something I got all kinds of accusations based on inaccurate assumptions made about me from very little evidence.

          5. kareninca

            “Do we see a couple who thrill to dog fights and cock fights here? The lust for violence expressed comes in many flavors.”

            Huh? What do you *mean* by that creepy statement? There weren’t any pictures of dogs fighting. They just looked silly because the water made their faces seem scary. They were having fun.

            I’ve known a number of cat people who really got into the fact that their cats caught and killed little animals – just horrible. But I’ve never known anyone who wanted his or her dog to do that.

        2. Anopheles

          I didn’t know about all that “friction/resistance triggering” stuff, I just thought they were good photos, interesting to look at. Oops, now I’ve gone and ended a sentence with a preposition, maybe I’m too stupid to read this blog… or not.

  1. SR6719

    Re: boom-goes-the-ichthyosaur

    Mary Anning (21 May 1799 – 9 March 1847) was a British fossil collector, dealer and palaeontologist who became known around the world for a number of important finds she made in the Jurassic age marine fossil beds at Lyme Regis, where she lived. Her work contributed to fundamental changes in scientific thinking about prehistoric life and the history of the earth that occurred in the early 19th century.

    Her discoveries included the first ichthyosaur skeleton to be correctly identified, which she and her brother Joseph found when she was just twelve years old…..

    Anning’s gender and social class prevented her from fully participating in the scientific community of 19th-century Britain — dominated as it was by wealthy Anglican gentlemen. She struggled financially for much of her life. Her family were poor, and as religious dissenters were subject to legal discrimination…….

    http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Mary_Anning

  2. G3

    But but but …. those drumbeating, foul smelling hippie protesters don’t know what they are protesting. They have no demands !

    1. tom allen

      The media demand that Occupy have demands! At least, that seems to be the persistent drumbeat that I hear. :-P

      1. Lambert Strether

        Remember when Law and Order did a Zucotti Park episode, the Occupiers occupied the set, then the police took it over, and the Occupiers started chanting “What are your demands?” at them?

    2. Susan the other

      Salmon; Bloomberg on Occupy’s SEC letter anayzing the bank’s opposition to the Volker Rule in Dodd Frank. Very impressive. Please give us more. I’d like to hear Occupy’s analysis of the US employment policy. The unspoken policy that is only deduced by observing such high levels of unemployment. Is it only government employment that is thought to inflate the currency? Then shouldn’t offshoring be illegal because it is clearly the cause? Occupy could go through our entire body of non-policy and absurd policy and make a mockery of “government.”

    1. YankeeFrank

      I finally gave up, disgusted, watching Bill Maher. The man is a moral shell — regarding the powerless, he mocked OWS for attracting homeless and mentally ill people to their encampments. Maher is an example of what is wrong with the Democrats, and I just can’t watch him anymore. That being said Suze Orman was a guest on the episode in question and she was angry about the wall street con job and how its affecting the working people of this country… and let everyone know it. She rocks.

      1. SR6719

        Mayer thinks he’s so important, but to a flea or a mosquito, he’s merely something good to eat. (I’m paraphrasing someone here, but can’t remember who.)

        And he’s not even funny, his efforts at humor are pathetic, unlike real comedians, such as John Cleese or Michael Palin:

        http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=5Y-BvX2tMWI

        1. aet

          Sir Charles Chaplin had a “pathetic” sense of humour too, you know…so I take it your preference is for the slap-stick, or maybe “practical joke”, humour?

          And it’s “Maher”, not “Mayer”. The Irish have always been famous for their wit!

          1. YankeeFrank

            Please do not attempt a comparison between Charlie Chaplin and Bill Maher. Chaplin had a warm love for humanity, especially the poor and downtrodden. Maher is a spoiled frat-douche who has no love in his heart for anyone, including the women he apparently beds between bong hits and jacuzzi dips. Chaplin would never have referred to the homeless in the disgusting and derogatory way Maher did. Never.

          2. Neo-Realist

            You should check out some of Chaplin’s two reelers–the Immigrant, Behind the Screen, the Floorwalker, the Vagabond–Working Poor struggle with empathy underneath the slapstick.

          3. David

            Uh … maybe someone needs to remind you folks that AET is using the word “pathetic” in the sense of PATHOS. Look it up. What happened to the intelligent word-play I used to find here? Hmmm, maybe that’s why Roy Zimmerman isn’t more popular… sigh….

          4. YankeeFrank

            aet’s comment was tone deaf at the very least. Maher’s humour maybe pathetic in the usual sense, and Chaplin’s may be pathetic in the archaic sense, but asserting that Chaplin’s humour is pathetic “too” suggests that Chaplin is somehow similar to Maher. He is not.

      2. LeonovaBalletRusse

        YF, I concur. With *friends* like Maher, who needs enemies? Is he a model we can be proud of? Not only is he crudely vulgar, he comes off as supercilious and smug, laughing at his own *jokes* while he gives the *audience* time to *get it*. Mostly, he comes across as a clueless, misogynistic A$$-whole. Of course, *Maher* is a Persona with a *sexist* Old Guard Liberal Mask. Kinda like the *Beat* Generation of hipsters bleating repressed fury at Mommy’s authority still in their heads, proving they main-hood with drugs and male bonding, and a FU attitude, railing against the *Establishment*.

        As a woman who’s had the good fortune to know men of great courage, love, heroic accomplishment, and exquisite maturity, I find it difficult to regard Maher the Persona as a *Man*. He is rather the portrait of the pathetic failure of the White Male to become a fully developed man. What traumatic experience lurks beneath the contemptuous *Maher White Male Intellectual* Mask? Is he not one more flagrant example of “What’s Wrong With America?” Perhaps he is more to be pitied than scorned.

        *Maher* is Old Guard White Male Contempt Personified, to match the Old Guard format of Television, both dying on the vine. Good riddance.

        Perhaps the Man behind the mask will one day walk forth.

        1. SR6719

          The smug macho act and crude vulgarity could be the result of small penis syndrome.

          We must have pity and not despise him.

        2. Klassy!

          Supercilious and smug are indeed the words that come to mind when I think of Maher. You’re right– who needs him?
          I guess for those invested in the idea of endless conflict as ooposed to actual change, he serves a purpose.

        3. Valissa

          Excellent take-down of Maher. His so-called humor mostly relies on mean spiritedness and petty schoolboy elitism.

          1. evodevo

            Unfortunately, I have come over time to agree with you. Maher used to be one of my go-to comedians in the Bush era, but I have grown to dislike a lot of his schtick. Give me Colbert and Stewart any time.

          2. Valissa

            @evodevo, I used to be able to tolerate Maher in small doses back in the Bush era, but these days I just can’t stand his attitude. Always preferred Stewart and Colbert, but hardly watch those shows these days. There’s a reason I don’t watch Fox News, and a reason I don’t listen to Republican or even Dem CONgress critters or candidates speak, and Stewart’s show has come to rely on making fun of clips of just those things, mostly Repubs of course…uggghhh, I don’t want to be reminded of that crap! For years I thought it was funny when Jon made fun of those things, but I’m too disgusted with the whole MSM-politico con game to enjoy that now boring and repetitive schtick. He needs some fresh material and some new targets before I go back to watching.

          3. ambrit

            Friends;
            As someone who grew up loving the Goons and then the Pythons, Maher and his cadre have always been repugnant to me. Very little empathy for the ordinary folks to be found there. Chaplin, as an earlier thread has argued was an entirely different cat. He grew up, if my memory serves me right, as a lower class lad. These experiences mark you for life, duh! It should be self evident, but many people can’t get past the ‘star’ image his name conjures. Indeed, as Yankee Frank observes, even a cursory viewing of Chaplins’ two reelers show a pugnacious determined reformer in action. Charlie Chaplin is the Little Tramp, an everyman. Maher, on the other hand…

        4. Sophie

          Bill Maher is a smug, sycophantic, scumbag. To me, he is at the top of the heap of used-up media hookers. He attempts to position himself as intellectually above left/right and “politically incorrect.” In reality, he is nothing more than a war-mongering gatekeeper, that will sell you the government line EVERY time. He doesn’t dare say a word that would jeopardize his contract. If Bill is confronted with a controversial statement, whether from a guest or audience member, he reverts to his violent, zionist thug persona to enforce the “company” line. In short, he is a whore.

    2. LeonovaBalletRusse

      Rene, after Hedges, hop to “‘Freedom Watch’ Goes Dark”–re Napolitano’s *suicide note in speech* of Fox, for which he was promptly fired. I trust he was guaranteed safe haven before he did this.

      What a disgusting shill for Fourth Reich Top Dogs is Rupert Murdoch and his henchmen.

    3. Walter Wit Man

      I can’t help but jump for the bait . . . and I’m sure get nothing done today . . .

      But I can’t even get through Hedge’s first paragraph, he has me so spitting mad.

      He’s the psyopeartive. Chris Hedges. The 9/11 witness!

      Ha. And a former New York Times reporter, award winner, and Columbia journalism guru. You’re busted Hedges!

      The dishonesty in the first paragraph can’t even begin to be unpacked. It’s pure mindfuckery.

      He dares accuse others of trying to “eradicate” after he himself compared black bloc people to a “cancer”? Wha?

      And then he writes: “Infiltrate the movement to foster internal divisions and rivalries . . . .”

      He is describing his actions but ascribing it to others in an effort to deflect from his culpability.

      And then, he accuses others of “[i]nvent[ing] atrocities and repugnant acts supposedly carried out by the movement . . . . ” Again, this describes Hedges treatment of the black bloc. He’s describing himself!

      “Finally, offer up a political alternative.” Preach it guru mindfucker. Let’s hold another lily white pure protest in front of the White House under falling white snow with white flags and white doves with people wearing white masks and U.S. military uniforms!

      And then he engages in a classic psyop tactic of correctly identifying Van Jones as part of the captured opposition (and Anonymous as well–the true agents provocateur). But Hedges and Van Jones and Anonymous are working for the same people, they just have slightly more or less credible covers.

      Jeez. The first paragraph is packed full of dishonesty.

      1. Walter Wit Man

        I also note that the picture accompanying this article shows a protester “confronting” the police by laying down by the police car and wearing a white mask. The psyop boys are getting a bit too obvious with the black v. white imagery.

        Also, another example of Hedge’s conflicting messages about what type of protest he wants his flock to engage in. Masked confrontation with the police is encouraged unless done with the wrong color of mask, or in a slightly different way than Hedges’ approves of . . . in which case you are to be arrested and exiled.

      2. YankeeFrank

        Hedges reiterates what many of us think — that the black bloc is screwing shit up for OWS because it is not time yet to become violent in response. The movement is too new and not established and familiar to the public. The black bloc is full of wanna be revolutionaries who don’t really care about the movement so much as they want to vent their anger and break things. Sorry but OWS has not been attacked near enough yet to justify violent response, and if you want the public on your side breaking random windows etc. will not work. There may come a time for violent sabotage but it is not yet, and when/if it arrives, the work should be done in an effective and precise manner — attacking the symbols and infrastructure of economic oppression directly, and avoiding civilian casualties as much as possible. If you knew anything of successful protest movements you would know this to be the case. If the black bloc wants to do physical things, they should be helping the dockworkers shut down the ports and other actions like that. Just randomly breaking things is not effective and will not gain the movement any popularity. Additionally, performing violent acts within the cover of non-violent protesters will scare away many that are needed for the movement. If the black bloc wants to be effective they must organize themselves, pinpoint their operations and work independently of the OWS protest movement. So please stop bashing Hedges — he makes very good points and is extremely committed to real change, no matter what “psyops” accusations you hurl around.

        1. Walter Wit Man

          1. They are supporting the dockworkers and doing other actions like that. Like taking over unused buildings, etc.

          2. They are not committing violence–so far they claim to be using non violence and I haven’t seen any real examples of violence.

          3. The property they have destroyed was not random nor much of a big deal. It was targeted and limited. I think it was one day of rage, or something, maybe even modeled after Egypt if memory serves, and they attacked a Wells Fargo and maybe one other big bank and a Whole Foods. It didn’t appear to be major damage. And yeah, this small scale property damage occurred in a handful of other place on a few other occasions (amounting to how much property damage total across the U.S.? Less than $20,000?).

          And most importantly,

          4. Chris Hedges’ actions are highly suspicious. Check out his early sermons on the subject: http://dandelionsalad.wordpress.com/2011/09/25/chris-hedges-occupy-wall-street-interview-we-have-a-moral-imperative-to-fight-for-life/

          Notice all the “hope” and religious rhetoric. Notice the direct mention of mindfucking!!!!! It’s obviously on his mind when he talks about the neural wiring in the brain and the effect that fear has on the brain. He pretends to be “warning” us about the police brutality and tells us they are using these tactics on us to invoke fear. But he is using these very tactics himself and creating fear!

          There is no other way to describe his call to action and then subsequent attack on people that answer his call. He calls on people to resist the state and to commit civil disobedience and get arrested (but Hedges has to be careful b/c he has kids–nice touch). But his message is contradictory. It doesn’t make sense. When people commit civil disobedience in a way he doesn’t like he exaggerates and lies about their activities and then makes them the enemy to be arrested and expelled from the group.

          It’s classic mindfucking, and Hedges was setting himself up to the be one of the gurus early on. Complete with professional production values.

          1. LeonovaBalletRusse

            But there is truth to what he says. Read the works of Dr. Gabor Mate, or see his interviews on DemocracyNow! in 2011. Trauma directs us into the net.

            Try turning your attention to two videos at http://www.youtube.com
            “The Tavistock Agenda”
            “The Tavistock Institute for Global Manipulation”.

            If you were to read Hedges books as a set, from “War is a Force That Gives Us Meaning through “The Empire of Illusion,” I think you would detect the compelling ring of truth. It would be hard to make a .01% puppet out of Hedges. Be that as it may, I find his argument against the mysterious *Black Bloc* GRATUITOUS VIOLENCE (the use of force to smash things is an act of violence) compelling. I have read his books, however, so my attitude toward Hedges differs from yours.

            But, giving you the benefit of the doubt, are you proven psychic, so that you can label Hedges a psyops shill, with such conviction, absent the evidence? I ask this sincerely: What gives you such *CERTAINTY* in your belief, which seems to be a *gut-level* response to a perception of malice in Chris Hedges?

            Without accusation, but with dispassionate explanation, please make a cogent argument for your point of view. I’ll be listening.

          2. LeonovaBalletRusse

            Besides, isn’t Hedges a living, spontaneous man trying to work out his responses on the fly? A thorough reading of his books would tell you how he progresses, trying to see the *whole picture* rather than just a part, learning as he lives his experience. He is quite tense, I’ll grant you that, trying to anticipate every move that could sink the Occupy Movement, which remains exceedingly fragile.

            Hedges is a man experienced in Wars. Can there be any doubt that the .01% and their .99% Agents will try to kill the Occupy Movement in embryo? For surely it has not yet been born as an entity capable of self-sustaining life. In a sense, Hedges is a midwife attending the fruit of a precarious pregnancy.

            As for any *religious* expression, he has stated that he has forsaken institutionalized religion, but can we forget that his first choice of career was to be a just, compassionate Pastor of human sheep? He is to be praised for his rejection of the hypocrisy and damage of *canned religion*. This also shows his sincerity, as he walks the walk. To observe Chris Hedges in *spoken action* is to KNOW the meaning of SPONTANEOUS life. Hence, he will not be *on message* day after day, he will contradict himself as he progresses.

            I have no connection with Chris Hedges whatsoever, I only admire his courage and compassion, as he lives spontaneously in the public eye. His SPONTANEITY, and his continual ADAPTATION to new information, are *tells* that he is a living man and not a puppet. I say this within the FRAME of his revealed human development, recorded in his books. He is consistently alive.

          3. Walter Wit Man

            Hey Lenova,

            I watched the Tavistock video on youtube when you first referred to it a week or so ago. I hadn’t heard of Tavistock before and it was interesting.

            This fits in well with my other recent “research.” I watched “The Century of the Self” and learned about Bernays and Freud and the beginnings of mass mind control. Of course there was Operation Paperclip and Operation Mocking Bird, MKULTRA, and many related mindfucking experiments. That history is one of the reasons I’m am speculating as I am.

            It’s my recent research into sex cults in the Bay Area that is really interesting to me. I see a lot of similarities between the consensus rules of Occupy and the “one no vote” rules in some of these cults/communes (as well as other similarities).

            When I see Hedges’ contradictory instructions about how protesters should engage in civil disobedience and casting out unworthy people it reminds me of cult tactics. I also see a lot of jargon and mumbo jumbo that sounds nice that doesn’t really mean anything (and for Hedges, since he’s a talented writer, this is a fine line–I go back and forth thinking that Hedges’ flowery writing is a beautiful exposition containing deep thoughts about the meaning of Occupy–but then other times it seems like a lot of meaningless mumbo jumbo). It sounds to my ears like a sex cult person explaining the inner truth or their ideology–just a lot of nice sounding jargon hiding an ulterior purpose.

            Anyway, I assume most people involved are well meaning and I’m guessing that the psy operatives only sought to control it after it sprung up, but maybe they organized it from the beginning. Hedges sure seemed ready to lead.

            The video I keep talking about, from Hedges’ speech in front of the White House, was his claim to be a leader of the future movement. The optics in that are quite impressive and I can’t help but view it as propaganda and setting him up as the anti-black bloc guru.

          4. Walter Wit Man

            Lenova,

            My evidence? Just what I’ve noted–a reasoned speculative hunch. The perps control the evidence so it would be nigh on impossible to find a smoking gun at least for decades (before any documents are released).

            But to me his behavior is striking and damning. Plus, the 9/11 witness thing seals the deal for me, but I know other people won’t find that as persuasive.

            Some clues that led me to form my hunch:

            Check out the video http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=tOde31QYbI0 It looks like it was produced for this scam. (my favorite part is at ~1:52 when a “protester” is “arrested” but you can see him slip out of his very loose handcuffs as he walks away from the camera). I’ve analyzed it partially elsewhere but the whole white vs. black, pure vs. evil, hope vs. fear, imagery is really striking. [Btw, I admired this protest at the time.]

            Check out Hedges’ other videos laying out the same themes we see now: 1) giving contradictory messages by begging people to resist the police state then calling some people a “cancer” and wanting to expel them for doing it the wrong way, and 2) a message of fear–that the cops will use massive force but go ahead and stick your neck out–Hedges may or may not have your back–so fear wins, and the last theme, 3) the hope crap. He actually lays out his plan in his article today (but says it’s someone else’s nefarious plan). It’s the part where he talks about providing an alternative. Hedges’ alternative is a pure, white, MLK, JR. form of “non violent” civil disobedience, where the cops let you give pretty amplified speeches and fake arrest you and you go on to make money and earn fame for your heroism.

            Also check out the fact that Hedges is doubling down on his dishonesty. He’s not apologizing for calling people a “cancer” nor does he seem to be interested in any nuanced debate. He’s not engaging with reasonable complaints from people like from Graeber. Hedges has been more nuanced in the past (see his discussion of Greece violence for instance), so it’s strange that he is swinging such a big club here. He’s engaging in verbal violence, actually, and setting the stage for actual violence and real division.

            Also, the fact Hedges is aware of and talks about mind control indicates his guilt, rather than his innocence, as you seem to believe. By explicitly mentioning it and accusing others of engaging in it he may be trying to deflect from his own culpability of engaging in it. Or it’s at least on his mind because he’s been engaging in it and can’t help talking about it. It’s funny because this is also what happened in the sex cults–I think the perps have learned from decades of experience that it’s better to explicitly mention to the victims what you are doing to them–it somehow disarms the victims and it will be too hard for the perps to keep everything a secret so might as well “joke” about reality. Hedges is also accusing people of working for the police and doing other things to create division.

            The odds of Hedges being sincere are dropping fast. You’re right to note that his sincerity is possible though.

            Oh, and his stint in the seminary is not exculpatory as you seem to believe, it is even further evidence that he is a man that wants to fuck with peoples’ minds! Ha.

            You’ve been busted Hedges!

      3. LeonovaBalletRusse

        WWM, you are *obsessed* with Hedges. Take a time out and get to the bottom of it. Deal with it in private. You are your own worst enemy, *stuck*. Move on.

        1. Walter Wit Man

          I don’t think it’s personal. I don’t care about Hedges the person either way. If Michael Moore were engaging in similar actions (and he is!) I would be equally riled up.

          It’s just that I got suckered good by Hedges . . . and his actions are so dramatic and effective . . . so it riled me up.

        1. Walter Wit Man

          No books. I’ve only read his articles over the last few years.

          Like I noted, I was a fan of his writing. He’s a good writer and I remember agreeing with him–especially the years 2008 to now I guess.

          Just because he wrote things I agree with does not mean he is not complicit. This is the cover. He’s one of the more left wing gatekeepers. Plus, I see his writing and speeches in a much different light now that I have come up with this theory.

          I also find the fact he claims to have witnessed gory events on 9/11 to be very suspect.

    4. Walter Wit Man

      Based on my view of Hedges, I interpret this sentence as a threat rather than a warning:

      “The security and surveillance state has a vast arsenal and array of tools at its disposal. It operates in secret. It dissembles and lies. It hides behind phony organizations and individuals who use false histories and false names. It has millions of dollars to spend, the capacity to deny not only its activities but also its existence. Its physical assets honeycomb the country. It can wiretap, eavesdrop and monitor every form of communication. It can hire informants, send in clandestine agents, recruit members within the movement by offering legal immunity, churn out a steady stream of divisive propaganda and amass huge databases and clandestine operations centers. And it is authorized to use deadly force.”

      Scary shit coming from Hedges the psyop.

        1. Walter Wit Man

          None. How am I creating/encouraging enemies?

          But I guess Hedges argues in the article that revealing the emperor has no clothes is the truly subversive action.

          Should I read that as a warning as well? Jeez, I didn’t know it got this bad that logical speculation based on public facts was so subversive.

          1. Patricia

            Over the last years, we have been watching corruption multiply everywhere. Curling out of dark corners and bursting through doors, skulking like black mold and shooting from the bushes.

            It’s hard on the psyche and soul. There is too much happening and we need to give it some kind of order, but we don’t know how. We find ourselves in a kind of mental chaos that is soaked in fear and rage, and it can make everything look like organized malevolence. Because we lose our ability to delineate between error, disagreement, and true foe.

            I recommend a good holiday and a settling of the brain. Or conversely, since I don’t know you, if you yourself are psyops, try something different because this approach won’t work.

          2. Walter Wit Man

            Most of that sounds like sage advice Patricia.

            The lies and deceit and outright fascism do indeed harm the psyche. A vacation/break sounds like a good prescription.

            And I agree the truth is hard to discern in such a propagandized culture.

            But if you are implying my speculation isn’t rational or warranted I heartily disagree. If anything, I haven’t been skeptical enough. I keep learning that lesson over and over.

            Hey, even Chris Hedges is helpfully telling us to watch out for an army of psyops. I’m just taking his advice and yet people are jumping on me for having a overburdened psyche :) Jeez, where have I seen this mindfucking before?

          3. ajax

            I can believe Martin Luther King jr. was a
            bona fide troublemaker/”subversive” when there
            was his speech: “Why I am against the war
            in Vietnam”. Someone mentioned that some of
            this speech was broadcast on one of the Pacifica
            stations for Black History month; it was
            mentioned here in the NC comments in the past
            week, or about that. I found MLK jr whole speech
            on Youtube. My impression is that MLK was
            charismatic and a natural at leading.

            It didn’t occur to me that Chris Hedges could
            potentially be a kind of mole. What he
            said or wrote that you quote sounds a bit
            paranoid, so I agree in part (it’s scary).
            But then, the NDAA that Obama signed on
            December 31 says roughly that terrorists
            on US soil can be detained in a brig
            (army jail or something) for a long time
            and without the right to a hearing
            before a civilian court, right to a civilian
            lawyer, and maybe even allows the military to
            hold a terrorrist incommunicado on US soil …

          4. Walter Wit Man

            Oh no. Hedges was correct to describe the police state the way he did.

            My point is he is threatening us rather than warning us. Get it?

            He’s telling people to resist the police state and then ZAP, he says he doesn’t like the way people resist and they should be expelled and arrested and fed to this very same police state.

            Hedges does seem to be going for the MLK, Jr. vibe.

          5. ajax

            I don’t want to advocate, so I won’t :)

            Before the last Shah of Iran went into exile
            in 1979, there had been days with up to
            1.5 million people on the streets of Tehran.

            According to a BBC documentary in several parts
            on Youtube, one day martial law was on and
            a million people turned out to protest. About
            200 (or more, uncertain figure) protesters were
            killed that day. Plus, the anti-Shah
            Iranians had a broadly accepted replacement
            leader: Ayatollah Khomeini who was in
            exile in France.

            How many people die resisting before a
            government changes in some country?
            I’m not sure but we’ve got France (1789 AD),
            Russia (1917) and Iran (1979 AD).

  3. Greg R

    “Apologies for the thin links.” Yes, Yves, you are quite the slacker. What, have you cut back to working only 23 hour a day?

    1. LeonovaBalletRusse

      Aw heck, Greg R, Prof. Smith just lets the NC commentariat practice *participatory democracy* replete with links, when she’s consumed by higher necessity for a day. You see, we can feed one another when we must.

      1. ambrit

        Dear LBR;
        As long as we don’t end up feeding on each other. Most failed revolutionary movements fall due to infighting. That’s why charismatic leaders figure so heavily in the successful ones. They supply a point to coalesce around. I hope we don’t fall into that trap.

  4. Jim Haygood

    Here is the illustrated supplement to Glenn Greenwald’s above-linked article ‘U.S. Lamestream Media Takes the Lead on Iran,’ courtesy of Demonocracy:

    http://demonocracy.info//infographics/usa/cost_of_war/cost_of_war.html

    With the Depublicrat War Party going through the motions of another faux-choice election [vote for the war pig of your choice], one could wish for the Demonocracy graphic to be presented as a Ross Perot-style slide show during one of the debates.

    That’s a pretty damned impressive pile of caskets and hundred-dollah bills for a ‘peace laureate’ to rack up!

    1. LeonovaBalletRusse

      Jim, has a Nobel Peace Prize ever been revoked? The ones for Obama and Kissinger surely should bit the dust.

    2. LeonovaBalletRusse

      JH, why haven’t the Demon-Ocracy.Info graphics sets been pushed through to the American Masses through T.V. ads funded by the Opposition? Oh, because of TiVo — Take THAT! RALPH NADER: TiVo in Plebeian hands jerks Harsh Reality *out of sight/out of mind* like minced meat down the Rat-hole of Oblivion.

      The well-indoctrinate Right Christian Warmongering Masses (What would Jesus Do?) don’t need no stinking Reality shoved into their Mind’s Eye.

      When will LulzSec concentrate on a TV self-destruct mechanism? Just what would happen if the Addled American Masses lost their Great Nipple of Indoctrination?

  5. Jim3981

    “U.S. media takes the lead on Iran”

    The title says it all there. Seems like the media leads when it comes to the US elections also.

    In fact, one may think the media is ruling the world from what I can tell.

    1. LeonovaBalletRusse

      True to American Ignorance, the word *media*–the plural of *medium*–has become a *collective singular* noun, as did the plural *spaghetti*.

  6. SR6719

    Follow up to the article on ichthyosaurs:

    “ichthyosaurs swam the world’s oceans from 245 million to 90 million years ago, disappearing before the end-Cretaceous extinction rocked the world”

    This helps put the Presidential debates in perspective.

    Although we can think about a thousand years or a million years or even 245 million to 90 million years ago, no one can really imagine the countless small events that fill up such expanses of time, like a grain of sand settling to the ocean bottom. It’s hard enough to imagine early 19th century Britain when the fossilist Mary Anning lived, without even considering the time when ichthyosaurs swam the world’s oceans.

    The universe: a verb. Not existing in time, but time itself and not the time of past, present, future. Time undifferentiated in activity, not time of being. Universe: a decreated world:

    “..knowledge of motion, but not of stillness, Knowledge of speech, but not of silence…../ A moment not out of time, but in time, in what we call history: / transecting, bisecting the world of time, a moment in time / but not like a moment of time, / A moment in time but time was made through that moment: / for without the meaning there is no time, and that moment / of time gave the meaning.” – T.S. Eliot, “Choruses from the Rock”

    1. LeonovaBalletRusse

      BDBlue, where is Thorstein Veblen when we need him?

      Will Prof. Guido Giacomo Preparata please rise?

  7. DC Native

    It’s amusing to see each new Israeli charge against Iran headlined at MSNBC each morning. Today, they were blaming Iran [the government, not random Iranians] for the blasts in Thailand.

    Of course, the article contained no actual evidence that Iranians [or, more importantly, Iranians acting on behalf of the Khameini government] were behind the bombing. It also included only one or two brief quotes from…you know…Thai government sources. Everything else was an Israeli charge; “Iran did this, Iran did that, We know it was Iran, etc., etc.”

    And that is the headline news story in America. Literally. A bunch of evidence-free Israeli Likud accusations against Iran.

      1. Jim Haygood

        Consider one scenario: Israel attacks Iran; the strait is closed; gasoline surges to $6 a gallon; the U.S. promptly slides back into recession (a la early 1980, after the 1979 oil shock).

        In effect, an Israeli attack can unelect Obama (whom it does not consider particularly friendly) in much the same way that the 1979 Iranian revolution and hostage crisis unelected Jimmy Carter in 1980.

        The U.S. has the leverage to stop this (by cutting off aid), but a lobby-pwned Congress likely will ‘LIHOP’ (Let It Happen On Purpose). And Obama, who’s no military genius, likely is under the delusion that he can win as a ‘war president.’

        Sadly, we can identify the ‘bagholders’ by looking in the mirror.

      2. LeonovaBalletRusse

        LS, ridiculously tragic, n’est-ce pas? False flag as worn-out trope. They are running out of ideas, and that’s what happens to an *insular community*. They have *cried Wolf* too often, to use another cliche.

  8. CM

    The invisibility cloak story is pure nonsense.

    Engineers already isolate structures from earthquakes, using a wide variety of base-isolation systems. The notion that wrapping a building in rubber is somehow going to help protect it from seismic hazard ignores how earthquakes actually damage structures (here’s a hint: earthquakes come from the ground!), while also missing the immense size of their mechanical insult (they are the most powerful natural disaster short of being hit by an asteroid).

    And said rubber protection (hmmm?) certainly won’t help any with other hazards created by earthquakes, e.g., tsunamis.

    What a crock!

    1. Cal

      Stand in the bed of a pickup truck. Driver hits the gas, quickly hits the brakes, hits the gas, hits the brakes, hits the gas.

      What happens to your body is what happens to a building in an earthquake. Wrapping yourself in rubber does not keep
      you from falling down.

    2. skippy

      I you might like to look into harmonics. Why certain buildings of build and height collapse during a specific quake ( unique frequency per event ).

      Skippy… Elastomerics would dampen such effects, heck the stuff they use in floor tile set has advanced the longevity many times over ( mini earthquakes when you walk or move objects upon them), just sayin.

      1. MyLessThanPrimeBeef

        One look at an elastic response spectrum or an inelastic response spectrum, as in real life, will show the forces on the building from the various incoming quake frequency components.

        The researcher seems to working on redirect the waves and changing the speed. That’s something new…maybe worth finding out more how exactly the waves are redirected.

        From the article:

        This research has shown that we really do have the potential to control the direction and speed of elastic waves. This is important because we want to guide such waves in many contexts, especially in nano-applications such as in electronics for example.

    3. Jim Haygood

      Since this story is from Science Daily and not The Onion, it’s more likely that a journalist chose a bad analogy with the invisibility cloak.

      In a car, the engine mounts consist of rubber blocks. Their internal damping helps isolate the car body from engine vibration. Conceivably the principle could be applied on a larger scale to buildings, in lieu of the current standard of hard-coupling buildings to bedrock, which makes them act more like tuning forks.

      The Citicorp building in Manhattan was retrofitted with an actively-controlled counterweight on an upper floor, after a structural engineer realized that the original wind resistance calculations contained an error, which could cause the building to shake itself to failure in a gale due to natural resonance.

  9. Cal

    America’s Decline. What a great education historical read.

    Until the last throw
    away line about African Americans and their poverty.

    Did he suddenly realize that he had reached his word
    count?

    Sometimes I wonder if Chomsky is actually a creature of
    the Right, hired by the Military Industrial Complex, a verbalizer of the truth who gum flaps until stupor sets in and the truth is drowned in a sea of snores.

    Then he throws in canards that are sure to alienate the White Working Class that is the heart of potential 99% resistance.

    1. LeonovaBalletRusse

      LS, the Aussie who mooned the Quain was not promptly hanged by the neck until dead? (the blade is reserved for Monarch-Mocking carriers of royalDNA).

      is it not a capital offense to Mock the Monarch of the so-called UK?

    2. LeonovaBalletRusse

      LS – two points related to the *patterns* link:

      History shows that there are stupid, uneducated, propagandized mass-market *Liberals*–maybe they are shills for the 1%, maybe not. Many are those “educated beyond their intelligence” moreover. The problem arises with *canned* liberalism and conservatism.

      “like the profligate court of Charles I” YES! file “The Tyrannicide Brief.
      —————

      LS, Isn’t it past time to insist that the so-called (also in Hitler’s time) *Ultra-conservative Authoritarians* be forbidden to co-opt the term *Conservative* for their fascist cause? They are the farthest thing from conservative; they are Reactionaries squared. Why should we permit this FRAUDulent claim to continue unabated? But the Trusts!

    3. LeonovaBalletRusse

      LS, re post office closings. Do UPS and FedEx honor We the People’s Constitutional protections against *mail tampering* and *wire mail fraud*? Does the elimination U.S. Post Office stations and *U.S. Mail* delivery SERVE the 1% in their War against the Constitution of the U.S.A., and the rights it confers to We the People?

      “Another one bits the dust.”

      1. Lidia

        Postal service is (unlike other contested programs) actually provided for by the Constitution.

        Good luck getting Republicans to honor the Constitution in this.

        1. LeonovaBalletRusse

          Lidia, I’m glad you confirmed what I vaguely recalled. Yes, it’s a *right* according to the Constitution. Maybe someone in a high place will pick up on this and shove it into Reactionary faces like a cream pie.

          1. David

            Article 1, Section 8:
            “The Congress shall have Power … To establish Post Offices and post Roads; … ”

            http://en.wikisource.org/wiki/Constitution_of_the_United_States_of_America

            I’m no Constitutional Scholar but I feel comfortable enough to say that this enumerated power of the Congress is not exactly a “*right*” of the People (or people). A little more accuracy in your writing & thinking would go a long way toward improving (my) reception of your comments.

            This is not to say I endorse the right-wingers efforts to destroy unions by dismantling the Post Office. Quite the contrary, I have never understood why Obama, Congress, etc haven’t used the Post Office as a jobs program. That is, add 100,000 or 500,000 or 1,000,000 otherwise unemployed people to the Post Office staff and everybody wins: the unemployed get jobs; the People get much better service; the economy gets stimulated in ways that everybody can see and benefit from…. but no, the U.S. government would rather spend money using million dollar machines to bomb peasants in Pakistan and elsewhere …

    4. LeonovaBalletRusse

      LS, the *Shocking Report* – all too true. Sterling Hayden’s “precious bodily fluids” thang is Dead Serious anent the Global *Sperm Wars*. See, for real:

      “AMERICA ALONE: The End of the World As We Know It” -with a New Introduction – by Mark Steyn (Regnery Publishing, Inc./and Eagle Publishing Company, Washington, D.C., 2006). REGNERY!

      Fess up: Weren’t those Joe Camel ads really pro-Muslim-Hegemony Prop, an InYourFace incitement to phallic bonding by Young White Christian Males, brought by the .01% Above Any Fray, thanks to the folks at Tavistock?

      Oh, “Carry Me Back to Ole Virginie” and the National Macho Security State of VA: to preserve and protect the phallic output of the .01%+.99%Agency=1%.

      Yes, Virginia, it’s all about the Bucks that profit the .01% through Endless War.

      The Grunts are fighting to promote 1% sperm above their own. Sweeeet. And it was ever so.

      1. ambrit

        Dear LBS;
        To continue on with the phallocentric theme of this thread; since what I know of the “Company” suggests a heavy compliment of persons of “deviant sexual orientation,” what is the value of promoting their sperm if it’s mainly going to be, shall we say, sequestered. Didn’t ancient Sparta have a similar ruling elite? Where was the Companys’ Thermopylae? Three Hundred Trojans is more like it.

  10. Cal

    Re Post Offices.

    Those who lament the decline of America might reconsider
    their use of Fedex. That company is part of the decline.

    We use UPS. Drivers with benefits and good working conditions instead of race to the bottom over worked
    slaves at Fedex.

    “FedEx ‘s treatment of people who appear by almost any standard as employees but are treated for tax purposes as independent contractors has prompted numerous lawsuits.

    It’s possible that their scheme will eventually be ruled illegal. But for too many workers, being thrown away like they’re a piece of garbage is too familiar.

    The job pressures on Americans have been mounting for many years. NYT reporter Louis Uchitelle has been writing about the effects of layoffs and corporate downsizing for years, including a book, The Disposable American: Layoffs and their Consequences. Many Americans are understandably worried about losing their jobs. But as Uchitelle describes this morning, worries about the existence of jobs may mean that not enough attention is being given to the fact that increasing numbers of jobs pay too little to keep workers in the middle class…”

    http://www.dailykos.com/storyonly/2008/4/20/142945/294

    1. LeonovaBalletRusse

      Cal, connect FedEx’s *brilliant career* with Georgia M-I Complex. Georgia: leading M-I Republican PowerMonopoly State opposed to the *size of Federal Government*–just like its Confederate Sisters, the *Carolinas*.

      As for Federal Largesse to GEORGIA of *Jekyll Island* fame, why don’t we just “PULL IT” and see what happens to *Republican* Georgia?

    2. evodevo

      I know two FedEx drivers, and they are contract slaves, making less than $30k after all the expenses they are expected to cover. Also, we rural mail carriers deliver A LOT of packages for both FedEx and UPS. The PO contracts with them for “last mile” (actually last 20 or 30 miles) delivery out of our office because it’s too costly for THEM to deliver it to the rural customer in the boonies.
      The post office was originally supposed to be a government SERVICE, not a cash cow. It is usually considered to be infrastructure, like roads and bridges.
      Oh, wait ….

        1. ambrit

          Dear LBR;
          After all, it was dear old “moderate” Republican Richard Nixon who spun off the package business of the U.S.P.S. into private hands. The package part of mail has always been the revenue driver.
          I echo evodevos’ comment. I too was a rural sub for several years. The system was most definitely rigged to ‘sweat’ the delivery person. Each route is counted each year and an average work load is established. Each day is paid as an “average” day for the year as a whole. Then, as set up, the regular carrier gets to pick which days to take off, with the predictable result that the sub gets the heavy mail days on average, for the yearly average pay. Subs also, back then, had no benefits. We had to wait for a route to come open, waiting in terms of seniority. I finally threw in the towel when I had arranged for some days off for a family gathering, several months in advance. The morning of the first day, when we were getting ready to make the trip to the event, the post office calls me up and demands that I come in to run the route. The regular had decided to take the day off because the mail volume that day was “way bigger than I expected.” When I complained, the office chief told me that subs had no recourse, we were hired at will, and continued working at the sufferance of the U.S.P.S. I never went in to work, we took the trip. I am proud to say I was fired by the U.S.P.S.

    3. Lidia

      You use UPS?!!

      PLEASE!

      I used to send proofs and documents within state arriving in 1-2 days via the USPS for a cost of about $2 per large envelope.

      My clients didn’t like that I was saving them money: they wanted the same docs to travel to Memphis and back for $20. THAT they considered “SERVICE”!!!

  11. Susan the other

    About Chomsky and Yaroufakis. They agree. Chomsky confirms that financialization and offshoring of production has finally, after 50 years, destroyed wealth distribution in America. That distribution mechanism is jobs of course.

    And jobs are a big no-no if a country must keep inflation down. Seems this little contradiction of equality has come full circle because we must now impose and maintain a high level of unemployment to achieve what we once achieved with 6% unemployment. I finally understand why the Fed is given such a conflicting mandate of maintaining employment and preventing inflation. It is Fed speak for keeping the proper level of unemployment to maintain low inflation. It has nothing to do with a goal of full employment.

      1. aet

        …but too much of a focus on “wage inflation” as the engine of general price inflation would be to discount, without examination, the systemic effects of higher relative oil prices on the general level of prices in the economy, wouldn’t it?

        Labour is not the only input with costs in economic production: and thus, the cost of labour need not be the sole – or even the primary – input cost which acts as the primary engine of general price inflation.

  12. Susan the other

    Also about bone-burrowing snotworms (Ichthyosaur article). We really should stop electing them. The political class should protect citizens, not feed off their carcass.

  13. LeonovaBalletRusse

    Re: “Is Wall Street castrated?” — great photo of the Brass Bells waiting for the kill–original *mascot* and enduring symbol of Merrill Lynch (see New Orleans connection with the great ML). This was before Mass Pop. shorts were in vogue.

    Why has no one yet gelded that brass bull? Merrill Lynch is so over.

    1. MyLessThanPrimeBeef

      I am curious about what happens when a bubble die.

      Does it reincarnate as another bubble?

    2. LeonovaBalletRusse

      “The Article proposals a Private-Public Partnership (PPP) REGIME” — what a *tell* — how reminiscent is this key phrase of the *Security Prosperity Partnership* made EXTRA-LEGALLY by the traitor George W. Bush as Agent of a Foreign Power while in Office as President of the U.S.A., in the ACT of forging the NAU *REGIME* with the Agency of traitors Chertoff, Gonzales, and Rice.

      Harvard University, was your skim from the *Democratization of the Soviet Union* not ENOUGH for you? Is your voracious appetite for MORE never to be glutted? Must the image of the all-consuming pig Larry Summers come to mind whenever the name *Harvard* appears? We opine that you are yet SWINE.

      Get thee to a slaughterhouse.

      *Bard of Clan Robertson*
      (of “The Ladies from Hell”)

  14. kevinearick

    Open Source Declaration of Independence

    Empire bullsh** is not the business of the military; that’s the work of diplomats. First and foremost, it is the duty of the military to seek God, the unknown, well beyond the event horizon of empire. Next, it is to honor family, so that parents may focus on raising their children in peace, confident that civil society will expand to accept their cause. Finally, it is to serve country, to protect and carry the flame of democracy forward to future generations, opening the NPV window to economic activity for all. Because the flame dies in the US does not mean that it is any less bright. Seek and you shall find.

    Of course the sun will rise on America, but that posturing is a poor excuse for its source, love of duty. The military will obey Presidential Order, no matter how stupid, but the president is not, has never been, nor will ever be the captain of the enterprise. There is the appearance of marriage, to the uninitiated, and there is marriage.

    Parents are the cradle of life, not a grain of sand, and Marriage is the Holy Grail. It is not love of honor on parade, but love of duty that guides us through the darkness of tyranny, to the constitutional character on the other side. Birth is a right, granted by God, not a whim or edict proclaimed by Head of State.

    The military salutes authority; it does not bow. Gather your priests to bow before you and consult your History. The church will burn and the phoenix will rise. The Diplomats start wars on behalf of legacy; the military ends them to the end of new family formation. Selfish, lazy and stupid are prerequisites for admiralty only on the empire side of the contract.

    Compromise is for diplomats, not war. A constitution is all about compromise and the empire never entertains a contract it does not intend to break. Watch your step. The empire is not the center of the universe.

    Rape perpetuates itself in powerless victimization, seeking power. Don’t exploit the planet and expect others to intercede on your behalf. Closed systems are always hierarchical in nature and controlled by rape, in one form or another. The US military is having difficulty with the gay policy because it opens a door that it would rather keep shut.

    The very best a single person can hope for is to be an arm-chair quarterback, on a shrinking circle to the point of prisoners dilemma, addiction to self, in the image of empire, the only way out of which is to nurture the unborn.

    All the king’s horses and all the king’s men…before this is done, the mighty on earth will be humbled again. Write your constitution and throw it away. THERE IS NO PLAN, but God, direction unknown, depending upon the children yet born. Each and every stepping stone along the way rests upon the abyss.

    If Silicon Valley is an economic generator, why must it have free labor and free capital, in a market free from competition, all guaranteed by the empire. What is it that you fear?

  15. Sophie

    (My first comment is awaiting moderation. Let’s try it again, without the z world.)

    Bill Maher is a smug, sycophantic, scumbag. To me, he is at the top of the heap of used-up media hookers. He attempts to position himself as intellectually above left/right and “politically incorrect.” In reality, he is nothing more than a war-mongering gatekeeper, that will sell you the government line EVERY time. He doesn’t dare say a word that would jeopardize his contract. If Bill is confronted with a controversial statement, whether from a guest or audience member, he reverts to his violent, thug persona to enforce the “company” line. In short, he is a whore.

    1. Sophie

      This comment should have gone above, in response to LeonovaBalletRusse, however I used a little word that begins with z, in referring to Bill Maher, linking him to a certain political movement, and that must have triggered the WordPress filters.

        1. Sophie

          I was referring to the movement that supports the development of the state of Israel. Bill Maher is a hawk when it comes to Israeli foreign policy, and supported Bush whenever it concerned Israel.

          Bill Maher: “And I hope this doesn’t ruin your birthday, but I have to say, watching George Bush talk about Israel the last week has reminded me of a feeling that I hadn’t felt in so long I forgot what it felt like: the feeling of pride when your president says what you want your president to say, especially in a matter that chokes you up a bit.”

          http://www.huffingtonpost.com/bill-maher/i-love-being-on-the-side-_b_25375.html

  16. LeonovaBalletRusse

    Just hearing on All Things Considered/NPR about the D-head Scientists who developed the new bird-flu virus without regard to unintended consequences.

    Recommended for JUSTICE in this matter: that these scientists be injected with their virus while in *quarantine* forever, so the world of scientists can *see what happens*. Let these pioneering scientists have the courage of Mme Curie, and become guinea pigs for their own experimentation, but in seclusion since communicable disease is involved.

    This is how to *square the circle* of RISKY BUSINESS in science. May the High and Mighty of covert Defense and Security Labs EAT the products of their diabolical genius unto their extinction.

    1. Walter Wit Man

      Been hearing about this for a while now . . . seems like intentional ongoing low key chatter planted in the media by the West . . . although I don’t necessarily doubt they created a killer bug. Scary stuff. When you have people like Gingrich predicting mass outbreaks from about ten years ago (as well as other drum beats along those lines), it makes me wonder if the killer bug will be the false flag that launches the next war.

      And I love the assumption that out of all governments in the world the U.S. should be trusted with these killer germs to keep out of the hands of the bad guys. Uh, maybe the U.S. is the bad guy? The anthrax attacks in 2001 came from within the U.S. government, no? The U.S. is the only country to use nuclear weapons on people. Why should it be trusted with super weapons and not other countries?

      Plus, think how profitable the inoculation/antidote will be. The elite can simply inoculate themselves and cull the rest of the herd. It provides them with the perfect weapon.

  17. scraping_by

    Re: Beating the drum

    From last year, but still relevant, the NYT’s executives give a ‘mini-culpa’ for leading the propaganda campaign to suck us into a war of aggression against a nonthreatening nation.

    http://www.thenation.com/blog/163176/updated-bill-kellers-latest-mini-culpa-backing-iraq-war

    The usual out is the heartfelt cry, “How could we have been so wrong?” The honest answer: by trying hard.

    One has to note, in fairness to Israel, that Saudi Arabia is also has a long term enmity against Iran. Part of this is religious, ethnic, and economic antipathy. Part of it is keeping oligarchic control over the Islamic world. And part of it is avoiding successful Islamic governance that doesn’t involve a totalitarian gang of princes.

    So, aggression against Iran is in the national (or regime) interest for both Israeli and Saudi elites. And when did a US government every damage its own national interest to promote theirs?

    1. LeonovaBalletRusse

      Thanks for the link. Very sweet credit to Yves for her wisdom. The Treasure Island piece re Occupy and Yves leads us to poignant reality in London:

      “Rich London, poor London — a tale of two cities” by David Hewitt (7 Feb 2012), as a web exclusive on “New Internationalist Magazine* site. Hewitt is a free-lance writer who knows the meaning of Dickens. LINK:

      http://www.int.org/features/web-exclusive/2012/02/0/london-inequality-what-would-charles-dickens

      And what do Agents of the Imperial City have to say about this expose?

      Can there be any doubt that this is the result of a .01% Global Reich conspiracy to return *the World* to the Golden Age of Victorian London and of the Robber Barons in the U.S.? We’re next, according to PLAN.

      BILL BLACK/YVES SMITH 2012: JUSTICE NOW OR NEVER!
      Chris Hedges: Secretary of State
      Michael Hudson: Secretary of the Treasury
      Abigail Field: Attorney General: Dept. of Justice
      Catherine Austin Fitts: Department of Housing/Local Loans
      Max Keiser: Chief of Staff
      Gretchen Morgenson: Press Secretary

      *UPPITY* AGENTS UNITE! We have nothing to lose but our shame.

        1. LeonovaBalletRusse

          Sorry, wrong again. (It might work if you omit the “kens” at the end of the link).

          Please, just travel to the site: http://newint.org — and click on the “Rich London” piece in the queue. Other items there worth reading, also.

          My apologies.

  18. LeonovaBalletRusse

    ATTENTION NC readers, theres a new *E-CONning* Campaign afoot:

    On public radio (Marketplace) this evening, we hear about the book, “THE END OF MONEY,” pushing a NOVEL campaign, to wit: “Money is DIRTY”–as in “Money is bad for your health! So the drive is on to eliminate CASH, because of a suddenly altruistic concern for Public Health!

    Is there no end to credulity?

    1. LeonovaBalletRusse

      Thanks, kravitz. The plot thickens, before the actual Settlement is written. Do you think they were running the *Summary* up the flagpole to see who would salute?

      YVES? What do you make of this bizarre unfolding?

      1. LeonovaBalletRusse

        “Phil Ting” is the assessor-recorder making these charges. Are we seeing Chinese retribution in the making in San Francisco?

        Is he shaking his spear at the corrupt Obama Adminsitration? Hoo-hoo knows?

      1. David

        You mean, like, a gathering of individuals delegated by their localities to assemble on, say, a state-wide (maybe even nation-wide) basis, discussing various courses of action, and then *actually* acting on behalf of the people at large? I can’t envision TPTB ever allowing something like that at this late stage.

  19. Sophie

    Off topic, but some of you might find this interesting.

    Here’s how the Oxford English Dictionary here defines the word “person”; (there are eight variations): “a part played in a drama, or in life; an individual human being; the living body of a human being; the actual self of a human being; a human being or body corporate or corporation with rights or duties recognised in law; theologically applied, the three modes of the Divine Being in the Godhead; grammatically, each of the three classes of pronouns and corresponding distinctions in verbs denoting the person speaking, i.e. in the first, second, third person respectively, and so on; zoologically, each individual of a compound or colonial organism – a zooid.”

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