Tag Archive: The Obama Administration


Politics and Legislation

Watchdog claims more evidence of leaks by labor board member

By Kevin Bogardus

The inspector general for the National Labor Relations Board (NLRB) claims to have uncovered more evidence that a Republican member leaked confidential information.

Terence Flynn, a GOP member of the NLRB who was recess-appointed by President Obama in January, is accused of making additional disclosures of non-public information to Peter Schaumber, a former NLRB member.

The supplemental inspector general (IG) report, dated April 30, alleges that Flynn released confidential information while serving as an agency chief counsel. The information that Flynn leaked, according to the IG, included four dissents and a draft of an NLRB decision.

Flynn also helped edit Schaumber’s op-eds on NLRB issues and forwarded him a January 2011 email from then-NLRB Chairwoman Wilma Liebman outlining her priorities for the agency that year, according to the report.

The 13-page report by Dave Berry, the NLRB’s inspector general, says Flynn broke ethics rules by leaking the information. He recommended that the labor board review the findings and decide on an appropriate course of action.

“We conclude that the issues identified in this report, and those of the prior report, evidence a serious threat to the Board’s decisional due process. We recommend that the Board review these facts to determine appropriate action,” the report says.

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Israel high court hears hunger striker appeals

Palestinians prisoners are staging hunger strikes to protest Israel’s use of administrative detention orders. (Reuters)

Palestinians prisoners are staging hunger strikes to protest Israel’s use of administrative detention orders. (Reuters)

By AFP
JERUSALEM

Two Palestinians who have been on hunger strike for 65 days appeared before Israel’s Supreme Court on Thursday to appeal their detention without charge, their lawyer told AFP.

Bilal Diab and Thaer Halahla are both staging hunger strikes to protest Israel’s use of administrative detention orders, under which military courts can order individuals to be held without charge for periods of up to six months, which can be renewed indefinitely.

Jamil Khatib, who is representing both men, said his address to the court focused on what he called the “illegality” of administrative detention.

“The appeal focused on two sides, the illegality of administrative detention in general, in terms of why they are being held, and secondly why Thaer and Bilal took this step to shed light on administrative detention,” Khatib said.

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Bahrain’s king enacts parliamentary reforms, hopes for national accord

Bahrain’s King Hamad bin Isa al-Khalifa said he will seek stronger supervision of government operations in light of new parliamentary reforms. (Reuters)

Bahrain’s King Hamad bin Isa al-Khalifa said he will seek stronger supervision of government operations in light of new parliamentary reforms. (Reuters)

By AL ARABIYA WITH REUTERS

Bahrain’s king ratified constitutional reforms on Thursday in an effort to curb a year of protests and open “a door for national dialogue,” he said in a speech broadcast on state television.

Bahrain, which hosts the U.S. Fifth Fleet, has been in turmoil since activists launched protests in February 2011 after successful popular revolts in Egypt and Tunisia.

“The door of dialogue is open and national accord is the goal of all dialogue,” King Hamad bin Isa al-Khalifa said in a ceremony broadcast on state television. “We hope at this important stage that all national forces and groups…will join in development and reform.”

King Hamad also said he will seek stronger supervision of government operations.

The state television named the amendments “the consensus of a people.”
The amendments, which boost powers to question and remove ministers and withdraw confidence in the cabinet, stem from a national dialogue the king organized after last year’s uprising.

This was his second televised speech this year announcing the amendments after he appeared in January.

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Yemenis call for purges of ex-leader’s loyalists

Rallies organized by youth groups were held in the capital, Sana’a, and several other cities in Yemen. (Reuters)

Rallies organized by youth groups were held in the capital, Sana’a, and several other cities in Yemen. (Reuters)

By THE ASSOCIATED PRESS
SANA’A

Tens of thousands of Yemenis took to the streets Thursday to demand dismissal of members of the country’s former regime from top military posts.

Rallies organized by youth groups were held in the capital, Sana’a, and several other cities. Protesters carried banners urging Yemen’s new president, Abed Rabbo Mansour Hadi, to “purge the army of family members” of his predecessor, Ali Abdullah Saleh.

After a year of uprising and turmoil, Saleh handed power to Hadi in February, but several Saleh loyalists and relatives are hanging on to key military posts and refusing to step down.

Saleh has been accused of meddling in the country’s affairs and obstructing efforts by Hadi to carry out much-needed reforms.

The U.N. envoy to Yemen, Jamal Benomar, has been meeting Saleh’s family members to try to persuade them to comply with Hadi’s orders. He said Thursday that a Saleh crony has finally agreed to hand over command of the elite Republican Guard.

Hadi has made restructuring the Yemeni armed forces his top priority, essential in combating al-Qaeda forces in the south.

Islamic militants linked to the terror group have taken over several towns in the south during Yemen’s long political and security vacuum.

In the latest battle, the Defense Ministry said Thursday that eight al-Qaeda militants were killed in clashes in Zinjibar, the provincial capital of Abyan province. The military has taken over several parts of the city, an AL-Qaeda stronghold.

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Drugmakers’ Deal With Obama Said to Be Probed by House

By Drew Armstrong

Pfizer Inc. (PFE) and Merck & Co. (MRK) are being pulled into an expanding congressional investigation about the agreement drugmakers reached with the Obama administration to support the Democrats’ overhaul of the U.S. health-care system, according to three people familiar with the talks.

The probe began last year, with Republicans on the House Energy and Commerce Committee seeking documents from an industry trade group, said the people, who aren’t authorized to speak publicly. When that group didn’t cooperate, the panel decided to target Pfizer, the world’s biggest drugmaker, along with Merck, Amgen Inc. (AMGN), Abbott Laboratories (ABT) and AstraZeneca Plc (AZN), said one of the people.

A man walks past Pfizer Inc. headquarters in New York. Photographer: Peter Foley/Bloomberg

The Republicans last month began negotiating directly with the companies in e-mails, calls and meetings demanding documents and information outlining what the industry agreed to with President Barack Obama in 2009 and 2010, when the law was being worked on in Congress. Michael Burgess, a Representative from Texas, said he’s been frustrated by a lack of cooperation.

“This has been like pulling teeth, trying to get information,” said Burgess, a Republican working on the panel’s investigation, in a telephone interview.

A White House spokesman declined to comment about the investigation. Peter O’Toole, a spokesman for New York-based Pfizer, said the company is cooperating, as did Tony Jewell, an AstraZeneca spokesman. Kelly Davenport, a spokeswoman for Thousand Oaks, California-based Amgen, said the drug maker is aware of the probe.

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Economy

Gold Price Drops Three Straight Months For First Time Since 2001

Adrian Ash Adrian Ash, Contributor

Between March 2001 and April 2012, the price of gold never fell for 3 months in succession. “Two months max”made for a great slogan and signal to buy on pullbacks, most recently in January 2010, your last chance to do so below $1,100, and April 2009, which was your last chance to buy below $900. Divide by ten and we’re talking about the price of the GLD.

Until April 2012 that third down month just never came.
Gold Price Breaks 3-Month Rule
Three consecutive months of falling gold prices are so rare that you can count the occurrences. Since 1957 in fact, they’ve struck only 65 times in a total of 661 three-month periods.

These three-month drops – let’s call them recessions to save me having to re-title these charts again – are rarer still in the U.S. stock market.

The S&P 500 index has delivered only 55 runs of 3-month drops over the same 55-year period.

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Wall Street drops before jobs data, LinkedIn up late

Reuters

By Edward Krudy

NEW YORK (Reuters) – Stocks fell on Thursday as economic data sent mixed signals on the recovery a day before the April payrolls report, while shares of Green Mountain (GMCR) plunged after poor results.

Slower-than-expected growth in the dominant U.S. services sector drove the day’s trading. The retail sector dragged the market lower after several chains, including Target Corp (TGT) and Gap Inc (GPS), fell after missing April sales estimates.

Market expectations for Friday’s non-farm payrolls report have fallen this week. Traders now suspect the economy added 125,000 to 150,000 jobs in April, below a Reuters consensus forecast of 170,000. One trader said there had even been some talk of a number below 100,000.

Still, the S&P 500 kept up its flirtation with new four-year highs, although it has struggled to rise above resistance at the 1,400 level.

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Treasury: Tax receipts not changing deadline on $16.4T debt limit

By Peter Schroeder

Lawmakers will not have to re-fight their epic battle over raising the debt ceiling until after the November elections, according to the Treasury Department.

April tax receipts have not moved Treasury’s debt-ceiling target date, and Secretary Timothy Geithner still expects lawmakers will have until the tail end of 2012 to raise the $16.394 trillion ceiling.

“Treasury anticipates that the debt limit will not be reached again until late this year,” a Treasury spokesman told The Hill on Wednesday.

Lower-than-expected tax receipts could have moved up the date on the debt ceiling, forcing a vote both parties would like to avoid before the election.

The government has borrowed $15.673 trillion, and the limit is still too far off for Treasury to more accurately predict when it will be reached, an official said Wednesay.

But the Treasury spokesman insisted the agency has the tools to prevent the United States from going over the limit if it draws near prior to Nov. 6, when voters go to the polls.

“If the debt limit were to be reached prior to the 2012 elections, Treasury would be able to invoke extraordinary measures to extend borrowing authority beyond the next elections,” the spokesman said.

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Cummings: Regulator wasting taxpayer money by refusing principal forgiveness

By Mike Lillis – 05/02/12 05:19 PM ET

The country’s top housing regulator is frittering away taxpayer dollars by refusing to reduce mortgage principal for struggling homeowners, Rep. Elijah Cummings (D-Md.) charged Wednesday.

Edward DeMarco, head of the Federal Housing Finance Agency (FHFA), has declined to write down the principal for loans backed by Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac, arguing that other anti-foreclosure strategies create bigger returns for the bailed-out mortgage giants.

Cummings, the senior Democrat on the House Oversight and Government Reform Committee, said principal forgiveness “saves more money than any other type of modification,” and suggested DeMarco is shirking his duties by taking that option off the table.

DeMarco, Cummings said, “has a duty and an obligation to allow the use of principal reduction” but has so far “refused to allow Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac to offer principle reduction even in cases in which it would save money compared to foreclosure or to other types of modifications.”

“That’s Mr. DeMarco’s mandate,” Cummings said during a housing summit in Washington sponsored by the National Association of Real Estate Brokers. “That is what Congress directed him to do. If principal reduction will save the taxpayers money, he should be doing it now.”

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Suicides increase in Italy’s Veneto region

Published on May 5, 2012 by

More than two million Italians are out of a work and the government has had to cut public spending.

But, it is not just afftecting the country’s poorer southern regions. In the country’s northern region, the Veneto, where business people pride themselves for their entrepeneural skills and an abundance of small businesses, the downturn is leading to an increase in suicides.

Al Jazeera’s Claudio Lavanga reports from Asolo.

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Wars and Rumors of War

Iran dismisses Western demand to close nuclear bunker

Iran’s International Atomic Energy Agency (IAEA) ambassador Ali Asghar Soltanieh briefs the media during a board of governors meeting at the United Nations headquarters in Vienna. (Reuters)

Iran’s International Atomic Energy Agency (IAEA) ambassador Ali Asghar Soltanieh briefs the media during a board of governors meeting at the United Nations headquarters in Vienna. (Reuters)

By Fredrik Dahl
REUTERS / VIENNA

Iran said on Friday it will never suspend its uranium enrichment program and sees no reason to close the Fordow underground site, making clear Tehran’s red lines in talks with world powers later this month.

Last month a senior U.S. official said the United States and its allies would demand that Iran halt higher-grade enrichment and immediately close the Fordow facility at talks over Tehran’s nuclear standoff with the West.

But Iran’s ambassador to the International Atomic Energy Agency, Ali Asghar Soltanieh, told Reuters he saw “no justification” for closing Fordow, which he said was under IAEA surveillance.

“When you have a safe place, secure place under IAEA control, then why do you tell me that I should close it?” he said, making clear Iran built the site to better protect its nuclear work against any Israeli or U.S. attacks.

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Four men charged over Al-Qaeda terror plot in Germany

Federal prosecutors in Germany said the group’s leader is also accused of undergoing training at a terror camp in the Afghanistan-Pakistan border region. (File photo)

Federal prosecutors in Germany said the group’s leader is also accused of undergoing training at a terror camp in the Afghanistan-Pakistan border region. (File photo)

By THE ASSOCIATED PRESS
BERLIN

Prosecutors have formally charged four men with membership in a terrorist organization after allegations they planned to carry out an al-Qaeda attack in Germany.

Federal prosecutors said Thursday the group’s leader – 30-year-old Moroccan national Abdeladim El-Kebir – is also accused of undergoing training at a terror camp in the Afghanistan-Pakistan border region.

They say he recruited and indoctrinated the group’s other members, whose last names were not provided in line with German privacy laws.

The 32-year-old German-Moroccan Jamil S. was accused of being responsible for helping produce explosives, while 20-year-old German-Iranian national Amid C. and 27-year-old German citizen Halil S. are alleged to have had mostly logistical tasks.

The men were arrested last year.

 

 

 

Iran readies secret salt desert bunkers for clandestine nuclear facilities

DEBKAfileExclusive Report May 5, 2012, 1:16 PM (GMT+02:00)

North Korean nuclear-capable BM-25 missiles sold to Iran

When International Atomic Energy Agency (IAEA) director Yukiya Amano declared Friday, May 4, that
“Parchin (the suspected site of nuclear-related explosion tests) is the priority and we start with that,” he may have missed the boat. As he spoke, Israel’s Defense Minister Ehud Barak said it was possible that Iran was already putting in place the infrastructure for building a nuclear bomb in 60 days.
In this regard, debkafile’s military sources disclose that Iran had by the end of 2009 early 2012 completed the construction of a new chain of underground facilities deep inside the Dasht e-Kavir (Great Salt Desert) – all linked together by huge tunnels.

Nevertheless, Tehran keeps on putting off nuclear watchdog inspections at Parchin for three reasons:

1. To carry on squeezing concessions from the US in private talks between the Obama administration and Iranian leader Ayatollah Ali Khamenei, as well as from the Six Powers at their formal negotiations. Iran has won permission to enriching uranium up to 5 percent purity and is after approval for the 20 percent which is close to weapon grade.
2.  The Iranians can’t be sure they have scrubbed out every last trace of the nuclear explosives and detonators tested at the Parchin military base – even after clearing away the evidence and relocating the facility in the salt desert wastelands.

Asked to define the activities he wanted inspected in Parchin, Amano said: “We do not have people there so we cannot tell what these activities are.”  According to debkafile’s intelligence sources, while the IAEA may want hard physical evidence collected by its inspectors, US and Israeli intelligence have long possessed solid information on the illicit activities in Parchin collected by the nuclear-sensitive instruments carried by their military satellites.
3.  To guarantee that the IAEA inspection at Parchin will be the last and there will no further demands for visits to any more suspect sites.
Tehran cannot tell exactly what data on additional facilities has reached US or Israeli intelligence and at what moment they may pull their discoveries out of their sleeves with fresh demands. Iran is therefore bargaining for a line to be drawn at Parchin to close any future road for good so that it can carry on nuclear work at the new Great Salt Desert locations safe from discovery.
debkafile’s Iranian sources report that American negotiators in their private exchanges have thrown out hints about limiting IAEA inspections. But Tehran is holding out for a more solid commitment from the US and Europe to halt all demands for IAEA visits and for the Six Powers to veto inspections at any new nuclear locations Israel may expose.

This was what Ali Asqar Soltaniyeh, Iranian ambassador to the IAEA Vienna headquarters, was driving at when he stipulated Friday that that  talks with the six powers must be limited to negotiations on “a modality and framework to resolve outstanding issues and remove ambiguities.”

 

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Two Egyptian soldiers injured battling al Qaeda in N. Sinai 

DEBKAfileMay 5, 2012, 11:27 AM (GMT+02:00)

After clashes with protesters in Cairo Friday, Egyptian troops fought a major battle with al Qaeda infiltrators for control of the main northern Sinai road between Sheikh Zeid and Rafah early Saturday, May 5. DEBKAfile: This road, controlled by some 20 al Qaeda-linked jihadist and Salafi mlitias, commands the Sinai smuggling tunnels into the Gaza Strip, the Egyptian gas pipeline to Israel and Jordan and enables them to hold the Multinational Observer Force at Al Gorah to siege. The battle erupted during a military raid. Tanks were sent in to back the soldiers up.

In Cairo, an overnight curfew was imposed around the defense ministry, the scene of violent clashes between demonstrators and troops. More than 130 protesters were detained.

 

Bombings spread in Syria as Al Qaeda seizes control of rebel factions

DEBKAfileExclusive Report April 30, 2012, 7:09 PM (GMT+02:00)

Syrian military center in Idlib

Around the first anniversary of the death of al Qaeda’s iconic leader Osama bin Laden at the hands of US special forces, the jihadist movement is making an operational comback in the Arab world and Africa. The suicide bombings hitting Damascus and Idlib in the last 24 hours were the work of Al Qaeda in Iraq – AQI, whose operatives have been pouring into Syria in the last two weeks, debkafile’s counter-terror sources report.

Washington has not asked Iraqi premier Nouri al-Maliki to stem the outward flow, realizing he is glad to see the backs of the terrorists and waving them across the border into Syria. Our sources report from Western agencies fighting al Qaeda that several thousand operatives have arrived in Syria to fight the Assad regime, most entering the country from the north. They come fully armed with quantities of explosives. Among them are hundreds of Saudis, Egyptians, Lebanese, Palestinians, Iraqis and Sudanese.

They quickly join up with the hundreds of al Qaeda fighters from Libya present at Free Syrian Army-FSA training camps in southeast Turkey. There, they are instructed in the geography of Syrian government, army and security forces locations, led across the border and transported to their targeted locations by special guides.
Monday, April 30, the day after Norwegian Maj. Gen. Robert Hood took command of a painfully inadequate force of UN UN truce supervisors, al Qaeda let loose with a spate of bombings in Damascus and the northeastern flashpoint town of Idlib. I

In the capital, they bombed the Syrian central bank with RPG grenades, ambushed a police patrol in the town center and blew up a bomb car against a Syrian military convoy driving through the Qudsiya district. Two days earlier, a suicide bomber blew himself up at the Zain al-Abideen mosque of Damascus, killing at least 9 worshippers.
These attacks were followed later Monday with three bomb blasts in Idlib at security and intelligence centers in the town, killing some 20 people, most of them security personnel. One command center was destroyed and hundreds were injured by the force of the blasts.
The Syrian ruler Bashar Assad keeps on complaining that his regime is under assault by terrorists and many of the fatalities reported are members of his army and police. But his own brutal methods against dissidents have deafened the West to these complaints and the world addresses its demands to halt the violence to him and him alone.
There is nothing new about the refusal in the West to heed the fact that al Qaeda infiltrators are increasingly responsible for violence in the various parts of the Arab Revolt. In Libya too, Muammar Qaddafi warned repeatedly that his overthrow would result in al Qaeda-linked groups seizing control of the country and commandeering his vast arsenals of weapons.

 

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Articles of Interest

Senator asks UK for evidence linking News Corp. scandal to Americans

By Andrew Feinberg

Sen. Jay Rockefeller (D-W.Va.) has asked an investigator in the United Kingdom to reveal whether he has found any evidence that links the phone-hacking scandal at News Corp. to U.S. citizens.

Rockefeller sent a letter to Lord Justice Brian Leveson, the House of Lords member leading the investigation of News Corp. in the United Kingdom, and asked whether “any of the evidence you are reviewing … suggests unethical … and sometimes illegal business practices occurred in the United States or involved U.S. citizens.

In his letter, the Senate Commerce Committee chairman noted that Leveson’s inquiry and other investigations “are continuing to expose disturbing new evidence” about News Corp. employee conduct, ranging from illegal tapping of phones to outright bribery.

Rupert Murdoch heads News Corp., which is also the parent company of Fox. Murdoch’s former newspaper, News of the World, is under investigation in England for allegedly bugging phones in order to obtain stories.

Rockefeller said he’s concerned that some of the undisclosed victims identified by the U.K. investigation were U.S. citizens.

“I am concerned about the possibility that some of these undisclosed victims are U.S. citizens,” he said, “and the possibility that telephone networks under the jurisdiction of U.S. laws were used to intercept their voice mail messages.”

Read Full Article  Here

Ohio Gov. Kasich concerned by climate change, but won’t ‘apologize’ for coal

By Ben Geman

Ohio Gov. John Kasich (R) acknowledged Wednesday that his belief in climate change cuts against the grain in the Republican Party, but don’t look for him to embrace Environmental Protection Agency regulations any time soon.

“I am a believer — my goodness I am a Republican — I happen to believe there is a problem with climate change. I don’t want to overreact to it, I can’t measure it all, but I respect the creation that the Lord has given us and I want to make sure we protect it,” Kasich said at a Columbus, Ohio, energy conference hosted by The Hill.

“But we can’t overreact to it and make things up, but it is something we have to recognize is a problem,” Kasich said.

Kasich touted efforts to help spur development of carbon capture and storage for coal, which has not been adopted on a commercial scale, and criticized what he cast as an overaggressive EPA.

“We are going to continue to work on cleaning coal, but I want to tell you, we are going to dig it, we are going to clean it, and we are going to burn it in Ohio, and we are not going to apologize for it,” he said during wide-ranging remarks on energy at the conference. Ohio is a coal-producing state and home to American Electric Power, a major coal-burning utility.

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[In accordance with Title 17 U.S.C. Section 107, this material is distributed without profit, for research and/or educational purposes. This constitutes ‘FAIR USE’ of any such copyrighted material.]

Health

euronews science : Encouraging progress in Parkinson’s therapy

Published on Apr 19, 2012 by

http://www.euronews.com/ British scientists claim tests for a new treatment for Parkinson’s disease have proved encouraging.
The therapy introduces three genes into the brain to boost levels of a chemical that sufferers lack.
Doctors in Cambridge have noticed a marked change in at least one patient in the trials.

Sheila Roy has suffered for 17 years. She said:
“People would take knives off me in the kitchen because I was everywhere with a knife. My vocal chords would suddenly shut so I can’t breathe. If I hit a wall of people then I can’t function, I just stop, but I’m feeling I can see a glimmer of the person I used to be now, which is really exciting.”

Parkinson’s Disease is a progressive disorder affecting movement caused by a degeneration in the brain cells that produce dopamine.

The new treatment delivers genes into the brain converting cells into a kind of replacement dopamine factory helping to control a patient’s movements.

Trials in just a handful of patients have been conducted at Cambridge University.

Dr. Philip Buttery, a neurologist at the Department of Clinical Neurosciences of the Cambridge Centre for Brain Repair said: “It seems to be having an overall beneficial effect on smoothing out people’s days, probably allowing a slight dose reduction in medication and, for some patients a better sleep pattern, a better quality of life overall.”

The idea is that a single injection of gene therapy reduces the need for patients to consume large amounts of drugs. Researchers are still monitoring patients for side effects. Doctors stress this is not a cure, but could nevertheless enable Parkinson’s sufferers to reclaim their lives.

Sheila Roy added: “If you can treat the symptoms and control in some way the deterioration in what you can do, it has to be better for you and it is.”

The researchers say Parkinson’s already affects 4.1 million people worldwide and that figure is expected to more than double by 2030.

No proof bad gums cause heart trouble, experts say

By MyHealthNewsDaily

Preventing heart disease is not as easy as brushing your teeth.

While numerous studies have linked gum disease with an increased risk of heart disease and stroke, there is no proof that bad gums actually cause heart disease or strokes, an American Heart Association committee said after reviewing 500 journal articles and studies.

Moreover, claims that dental treatment may prevent heart attack or stroke are unwarranted, the committee of doctors, dentists and infectious-disease researchers said in a statement.

“The message sent out by some in health care professions – that heart attack and stroke are directly linked to gum disease – can distort the facts, alarm patients and perhaps shift the focus of prevention away from well-known risk factors for these diseases,” said committee member Dr. Peter Lockhart, a professor of oral medicine at the Carolinas Medical Center in Charlotte, N.C.

Pets are good for child health

By PF Louis, April 18 2012
(NaturalNews) The New York Times came up with an article recently entitled “Can Fido and Whiskers Enrich Children’s Lives?” Different medical researchers and scientists were consulted for this article, which begs the question: Does research money really need to be spent on this type of question? It’s one thing to write an essay on the topic, especially one coming from real experience. But asking scientists and medical professionals, who are doing research on child and pet relationships, for their…

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Holistic Health

Parsley is a blood purifying superfood

By Dr. David Jockers, April 18 2012
(NaturalNews) Parsley is considered the world’s most popular garnish. Parsley was originally cultivated in Europe and the Middle East but has become a staple in American cuisine. This herb has remarkable healing and blood purifying benefits that classify it as a superfood. Parsley has been revered throughout history and used for both culinary and medicinal purposes. The Greeks made crowns of parsley to bestow upon their sports champions. It was used for the Hebrew celebration of Passover as a…

Fed up with steroids and asthma inhalers? Try the benefits of herbs as natural treatment for asthma

By JB Bardot, April 18 2012
(NaturalNews) Natural treatment for asthma helps reduce acute asthma attacks, manage chronic asthma and helps those with general trouble breathing. The benefits of herbs for treating asthma and the lungs has been shown repeatedly through the centuries worldwide. Asthma is a chronic upper respiratory disease affecting the lungs and airways. The lining of the lungs becomes inflamed during an asthma attack, forcing the airways and surrounding muscles to swell, causing trouble breathing. According…

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Pet Health

Do Carrots Naturally Improve Your Dog’s Vision?

Can Eating Carrots Improve Eyesight?

By Jennifer Kvamme, DVM

We’ve all heard the saying that eating carrots can help improve vision. But does this apply to our dogs as well? While there is some hint of truth in the concept, eating bushels of carrots will not give your dog (or you) super vision during the day (or night).

Carrots are indeed a nutrient-rich source for a variety of vitamins and minerals, including beta-carotene, a pigment that gives carrots and other vegetables their signature orange (or sometimes yellow or red) color. It is the beginning form of vitamin A (called retinal) that is necessary to maintain good vision — especially in dim light.

Read Full Article Here

Eye Problems in Dogs … Don’t Be Fooled

By T. J. Dunn, Jr., DVM

Almost daily every animal hospital receives a call about canine eye problems; and the diversity of concern expressed by the dog’s caretaker runs a wide spectrum.

There are times when veterinarians will check a frantic and anxious client’s dog only to discover an insignificant soreness in the dog’s supporting tissues around the eye (called conjunctiva). The very next “eye case” may be an advanced corneal ulcer that has allowed internal contents of the eye to actually protrude through the corneal surface! And that client might calmly state, “It’s been like that for two weeks but we though it would clear up.”

Fortunately in most veterinary practices the entire staff has been directed to prioritize all calls that express concern about a potential ocular difficulty. The reason for expediting the evaluation of any case relating to eye difficulties is that there is no way for verbal description to convey the true nature or severity of the problem. Seemingly innocent conditions can fool you … and result in an ocular emergency rather rapidly. These cases simply must be seen right away.

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Animal Cruelty

Arrests Made In Alpaca Killings

April 18, 2012 7:01 AM

(Courtesy Alpaca Owners and Breeders Association)

(Courtesy Alpaca Owners and Breeders Association)

WESTBROOK, Conn. (AP) _ Two Westbrook men have been arrested in connection with the stabbing deaths of four alpacas on an Essex farm in December.

The Middletown Press reports (http://bit.ly/HSg7rz ) that 21-year-old Kyle Rossetti was charged with animal cruelty, burglary and other offenses. He was held on $75,000 bond.

Shawn Malcarne was charged with conspiracy to commit animal cruelty, burglary and other offenses. The 23-year-old Malcarne was held on $50,000 bond.

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Call to action – Join the demand to investigate Michigan DNR director Rodney Stokes over forced shooting of baby piglets in cold blood

By Mike Adams, April 17 2012
(NaturalNews) There is nothing more pathetic, ugly and insidious than a tyrannical government thug who uses his power to destroy the lives of law-abiding citizens. Today, we have witnessed the outrageous acts carried out by jack-booted scumbags in Michigan’s Department of Natural Resources (DNR) who masterminded armed raids on two ranches in that state, all with the intention of shooting and killing traditional livestock and arresting ranchers as felons. This is part of Michigan’s new “Invasive Species…

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Wildlife

U.S. suggests no emissions limits to protect polar bears

Polar bears in Alaska

Polar bears in Alaska’s Arctic National Wildlife Refuge (Susanne Miller / U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service / April 17, 2012)

By Kim MurphyApril 17, 2012, 5:58 p.m.

SEATTLE — Polar bears are skating on thin ice in Alaska these days: Warming temperatures have resulted in dramatic shrinkage of sea ice, leaving the bears with fewer ice floes on which to rest and hunt seals.

But at least for the moment, the Endangered Species Act won’t be used to control the greenhouse gas emissions that conservationists say are contributing to climate change and posing one of the biggest threats to the bears’ survival.

The Obama administration on Tuesday released a proposed rule that — like an earlier version put forward under President  George W. Bush — exempts operations outside the bears’ normal territory from restrictions on activities. That could include new coal-fired power plants or big factories with mercury emissions, which might harm bears thousands of miles away in the Arctic seas.

Read Full Article Here

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Positivity Mind and Body

Louise L. Hay – You can heal your life


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[In accordance with Title 17 U.S.C. Section 107, this material is distributed without profit, for research and/or educational purposes. This constitutes ‘FAIR USE’ of any such copyrighted material.]

Politics and Legislation

Walker signs bill barring workers from collecting damages for employment discrimination

Wisconsin Gov. Scott Walker has signed a bill that prohibits workers from collecting damages in employment discrimination cases.

By: Associated Press report, Associated Press

MADISON — Wisconsin Gov. Scott Walker has signed a bill that prohibits workers from collecting damages in employment discrimination cases.

Under current state law, employees who prevail in discrimination lawsuits can collect between $50,000 and $300,000 in compensatory and punitive damages. The Republican bill blocks anyone from collecting such damages in employment discrimination suits…..

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Another health law faces court challenge

By Julian Pecquet

Two weeks after fighting for the survival of its signature healthcare reform law before the Supreme Court, the Obama administration will be back in court Tuesday to defend another part of the president’s agenda to make Americans healthier.

The D.C. Court of Appeals is scheduled to hear oral arguments in a case brought by five tobacco companies challenging regulations requiring graphic warning labels on cigarette packs and advertisements starting in September.

Once again, the administration is finding itself accused of overstepping its constitutional authority, this time on First Amendment grounds.

“The graphic images … were neither designed to protect the consumer from confusion or deception, nor to increase consumer awareness of smoking risks; rather, they were crafted to evoke a strong emotional response calculated to provoke the viewer to quit or never start smoking,” federal Judge Richard Leon, a George W. Bush appointee, ruled in February…..

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White House abandons push for federal contractors to disclose political giving

By Mike Lillis

The Obama administration has all but abandoned its push to require federal contractors to disclose their political donations.

A year ago, the White House composed a draft executive order that would have forced potential government contractors to reveal their political spending as a condition of submitting bids. But roughly 12 months later, no final order has been issued, and supporters and critics alike say they’ve seen no signs such a change is forthcoming.

“The executive order can potentially come back after the 2012 elections,” said Craig Holman, lobbyist for Public Citizen, a government watchdog group that has been urging the greater transparency. “But I don’t consider it still being contemplated [now].”

Holman said Obama sent clear signals the issue has been pushed to the back burner in January when the president declined to pitch it in his State of the Union address.

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Inside Russia: Putin’s Private National Guard

By Yulia Latynina

Nezavisimaya Gazeta reported that President-elect Vladimir Putin is poised to undertake the most significant reform Russia has seen in recent years by creating a National Guard from scratch. These special forces, numbering up to 400,000 men, would answer directly to the president and would be charged with protecting the country from internal threats.

As a result, Russia would resemble a classic South American or Middle Eastern dictatorship. Take, for example, Syria, where for decades men from the lower classes have had only two career options — a dead-end job with a state company or joining the troops that guard the president. Ironically, Putin is considering adopting such a system even after the entire world witnessed how the Libyan version of this model failed miserably, while the Syrian version of this model is headed toward a similar demise.

The creation of dedicated security units unconnected to the army or the police — like the infamous Tonton Macoutes under former Haitian President Francois “Papa Doc” Duvalier — does not protect citizens from criminals nor external enemies, but protects the leadership from the people. These units are telltale attributes of a dictatorship.

The Putin regime effectively issued a decree granting freedom to the siloviki, as Peter III had granted certain liberties to the nobility. In freeing the hands of the siloviki, they were allowed to extort, steal and even kill. Paradoxically, the government asked for nothing in return, except for the promise to uphold a sort of gentlemen’s agreement: “You are free to rape and pillage as long as you break up anti-government demonstrations.”….

Read Full Article Here

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Economy

Analysts: Gas prices may have peaked

By Andrew Restuccia

Gasoline prices, which have vexed President Obama politically in recent months, may have reached their peak, according to energy analysts.

Prices at the pump reached nearly $3.94 last Friday, the highest point this year, according to AAA. But prices have decreased slightly over the last five days, reversing increases that began in December of last year.

Analysts say prices could continue to decline.

“What this could potentially mean for motorists is that prices could take a bit of a breather or they might fall,” said Patrick DeHaan, senior petroleum analyst at gasbuddy.com.“Traditionally, every spring we see prices rise like this,” DeHaan added. “They tend to peak in late spring.”

Ben Brockwell, director of data and pricing at the Oil Price Information Service, said gasoline prices have decreased more in the last five days than any time during the past year…..

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Bernanke says financial stability a work in progress

By Pedro Nicolaci da Costa

STONE MOUNTAIN, Georgia (Reuters) – The U.S. economy has yet to fully recover from the effects of the financial crisis, and regulators must continue to find new ways to strengthen the banking system, Federal Reserve Chairman Ben Bernanke said on Monday.

“The heavy human and economic costs of the crisis underscore the importance of taking all necessary steps to avoid a repeat of the events of the past few years,” Bernanke told a group of economists and finance experts at a conference sponsored by the Federal Reserve Bank of Atlanta.

In a speech that did not touch directly on the outlook for economic growth or monetary policy, Bernanke focused on the lingering blind spots for financial authorities trying to prevent a repeat of the 2008-2009 meltdown…..

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IRS confident courts will uphold effort to license tax preparers

By Bernie Becker

The IRS is confident that its initiatives to increase regulation of tax preparers will be found legal, despite challenges from opponents.

With a libertarian group filing a lawsuit saying the agency is in the midst of a power-grab, Doug Shulman, the IRS commissioner, said last week that new requirements would help smoke out unscrupulous preparers and were being implemented with care.

“I’m very confident not only is everything we’re doing going to be seen as legal, but more importantly, everything we’re doing, I think, is going to benefit the American people,” Shulman said at the National Press Club on Thursday.

Under the IRS regulations, certain preparers have to pass a new competency test and complete 15 hours of education requirements a year.

According to the most recent figures, roughly 60 percent of taxpayers were using paid preparers.

But while it often takes a government license to cut hair, Shulman said that, before recent IRS efforts, there weren’t basic competency requirements for tax return preparers — even as government reports found some preparers making significant errors.

“I’m the IRS commissioner, so I’m biased that taxes are more important than how your hair looks,” Shulman said Thursday. “I know other people view that differently…..

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Want Jobs? Rescue Homeowners – and Spend, Baby, Spend

Richard (RJ) Eskow, Op-Ed:

Another way to get the economy moving is to get financial relief to people who have been financially struggling and have put off needed spending – on vehicles, home improvements, and the like – as well as reasonable amenities. Homeowners owe $800 billion in “negative equity” to banks for non-existent real estate value. That’s an “invisible bailout” funded by the struggling middle class, and delivered by borrowers who were frequently hoodwinked into taking out a mortgage at inflated prices.

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Ogaki Kyoritsu Bank To Introduce Japan’s 1st Card-Free ATMs

NIKKEI.com

TOKYO (Nikkei)–Ogaki Kyoritsu Bank (8361) said Wednesday it will in September introduce Japan’s first ATMs that will enable customers to conduct cash withdrawals and other transactions by simply placing their palms over a reader, obviating the need for a card or bank book.

Although ATMs equipped with biometric authentication sensors already exist, those machines still require customers to use cash cards or bank books to withdraw funds….

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On-call employment: Good for business, bad for workers

A department store employee wheels out a rack of clothing.

Matt York/The Associated Press

Retail turning to call-in shifts means smaller paychecks and less stability for workers

By Joe Eaton

Like generations of college students, Caprice Taylor needed a job to help pay her school and living expenses. For the 24-year-old student of fashion merchandise management at the Fashion Institute of Technology in New York City, sales work at a retail clothing shop seemed like a good option.

Taylor was hired last year at Club Monaco, a high-end clothing and apparel retailer owned by Polo Ralph Lauren. But her scheduled shifts at the Manhattan store were not guaranteed. Instead, she was given call-in shifts, which required her to call the store two hours before she was scheduled to arrive to see if she was needed.

Most often, she was not.

For months, Taylor said, she arranged her personal life around work days, waiting in her apartment, only to call in and learn the store wasn’t busy enough. On some weeks, Taylor logged as few as six hours, not earning enough to keep up with her living expenses.

“It puts your day on complete hold,” Taylor said. “It pressures you.”

After four months of unpredictable paychecks, Taylor quit. She later found work at a Polo Ralph Lauren store that does not have on-call shifts. She was lucky to find it. Retail watchers say big-box stores and shopping-mall stalwarts are increasingly hiring workers for on-call shifts, a trend that cuts labor costs for employers, but leaves workers like Taylor struggling to get by…..

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Wars and Rumors of War

Bahrain: The Key to Saudi-Qatari Servitude

Neo-Con’s pet project in Bahrain serves as point of leverage for Saudi-Qatari capitulation.

Tony Cartalucci
BlacklistedNews.com

Like an axe poised above one’s neck at execution, the despotic hereditary regimes of Saudi Arabia and Qatar have the specter of their own US-fueled “Arab Springs” looming over them, ever ready to be triggered. A constant reminder of this is the destabilized Sunni royal family in Bahrain, in the epicenter of Saudi and Qatari power.

Bahrain: The Key to Saudi Qatari Servitude SunniDestabilization

Image: A map of eastern Saudi Arabia featuring the island nation of Bahrain situated between Qatar and the Saudi mainland. Bahrain, like Saudi Arabia and Qatar, is a despotic Sunni monarchy – selected by the West to be made an example of and to keep its neighbors in check and on board for the current “Arab Spring” blitzkrieg upturning the rest of the Arab World. (click image to enlarge)

….

The Bahrain protests, like those of Egypt, Libya, Syria, Myanmar, North Korea, Thailand, and beyond, were trained, equipped, and supported by the US State Department. Leading opposition organizations, such as the US-basedWitness Bahrain” and Bahrain Center for Human Rights, are partnered directly with US State Department-funded fronts like theInternational Federation for Human Rights (FIDH) while a high-profile self-proclaimed leader of the protests, Abdulhadi al-Khawaja, was regional coordinator of “Frontline Defenders,” a Ford Foundation, Freedom House, American Jewish World Service, Soros Open Society Institute-funded “human rights” advocacy group. Al-Khawaja is now carrying out a “hunger strike” while in prison…..

Read Full Article Here

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Articles of Interest

Special report: Rendition ordeal that raises new questions about secret trials

In 2004, Fatima Bouchar and her husband, Abdel Hakim Belhaj, were detained en route to the UK, and rendered to Libya. This is the story of their imprisonment, and the trail of evidence that reveals the involvement of the British government

Ian Cobain
guardian.co.uk

Just when Fatima Bouchar thought it couldn’t get any worse, the Americans forced her to lie on a stretcher and began wrapping tape around her feet. They moved upwards, she says, along her legs, winding the tape around and around, binding her to the stretcher. They taped her stomach, her arms and then her chest. She was bound tight, unable to move.

Bouchar says there were three Americans: two tall, thin men and an equally tall woman. Mostly they were silent. She never saw their faces: they dressed in black and always wore black balaclavas. Bouchar was terrified. They didn’t stop at her chest – she says they also wound the tape around her head, covering her eyes. Then they put a hood and earmuffs on her. She was unable to move, to hear or to see. “My left eye was closed when the tape was applied,” she says, speaking about her ordeal for the first time. “But my right eye was open, and it stayed open throughout the journey. It was agony.” The journey would last around 17 hours.

Bouchar, then aged 30, had become a victim of the process known as extraordinary rendition. She and her husband, Abdel Hakim Belhaj, a Libyan Islamist militant fighting Muammar Gaddafi, had been abducted in Bangkok and were being flown to one of Gaddafi’s prisons in Libya, a country where she had never before set foot. However, Bouchar’s case is different from the countless other renditions that the world has learned about over the past few years, and not just because she was one of the few female victims.

Documents discovered in Tripoli show that the operation was initiated by British intelligence officers, rather than the masked Americans or their superiors in the US. There is also some evidence that the operation may have been linked to a second British-initiated operation, which saw two men detained in Iraq and rendered to Afghanistan. Furthermore, the timing of the operation, and the questions that Bouchar’s husband and a second rendition victim say were subsequently put to them under torture, raise disturbing new questions about the secret court system that considers immigration appeals in terrorist cases in the UK – a system that the government has pledged to extend to civil trials in which the government itself is the defendant.

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Navy simulates jet crash in Va. Beach

Leanna Caplan

VIRGINIA BEACH, Va. (WAVY) – On Thursday, the Navy simulated a jet crash near Old Pungo Ferry Road in Virginia Beach.

The drill was organized to train Virginia Beach and Chesapeake first responders. The scenario: A navy jet is unable to make the return trip to Oceana and has crashed near Back Bay in Virginia Beach.

The goal was to develop and exercise coordination efforts between the two cities and the Navy’s first responders, according to a news release from NAS Oceana.

CAPT James Webb, the CO of NAS Oceana, said, “We’re totally relying on all the cooperation. The first responders have to come from the surrounding community.”

The drill included numerous emergency services personnel and vehicles responding to the Navy’s fire trainer, which was placed in the parking lot of the old Capt. George’s restaurant.

“There are specific responder issues in dealing with aircraft that they wouldn’t normally face,” NAS Oceana Dist. Fire Chief Kenneth Snyder said.

Like unexploded ordinance and extremely flammable composite materials.

NAS Oceana personnel practice at least annually for the potential of a military aircraft crash, and the drill often involves the city’s first responders, but this is the first time a drill will involve both Chesapeake and Virginia Beach.

http://www.fox43tv.com/video/videoplayer.swf?dppversion=18327

Navy simulates jet crash in Va. Beach: fox43tv.com

Navy held recent drill to prepare for ‘exact’ events of Va. crash

April 6, 2012 by legitgov

Holy coincidence, Batman! Navy held recent drill to prepare for ‘exact’ events of Va. crash 06 Apr 2012 The US Navy held a drill on 15 December to prepare for the ‘exact’ situation that took place Friday, regarding the F/A-18 Navy jet crash. (No link, Fox News, 7PM ET live broadcast)

Navy jet has ‘catastrophic mechanical malfunction,’ hits apartments in Virginia

From Michael Martinez and Barbara Starr, CNN

CNN affiliates WTKR, WAVY and WVEC have more on the story.

(CNN) — A Navy fighter jet experienced a “catastrophic mechanical malfunction” during takeoff Friday over the military community of Virginia Beach, Virginia, and rained a stench of jet fuel shortly before crashing into apartment buildings, according to residents and Navy officials.

The jet carried a student pilot in the front seat and an experienced instructor behind him, and the dumping of jet fuel was “one of the indications that there was a mechanical malfunction,” Navy Capt. Mark Weisgerber told reporters.

The malfunction is being investigated, he said.

The two pilots, a Virginia Beach police officer, an EMS volunteer and three other people were treated at Sentara Virginia Beach General Hospital. One of the pilots was admitted, while the other six patients were released, the hospital’s website said.

Both pilots, who live in Virginia Beach, are “doing well and they suffered minor injuries,” Weisgerber said.

As of Friday night, three people from one of five apartment buildings heavily damaged in the crash were unaccounted for, down from 30, Virginia Beach Fire Department Battalion Chief Tim Riley said.

No one has been reported missing to authorities, but rescue crews are using a checklist of all occupants in the five buildings in an effort to account for all residents, Riley said.
Witnesses describe horror of jet crash

Rescue crews did an initial search of the five buildings, and as of Friday night, completed 95% of a secondary search, Riley said.
Witness: Pilot apologized for jet crash

“If there is anybody there, chances of survivability would be low,” Riley told reporters, referring to any survivors in the five buildings.
Witness: I saw flames under the plane

No deaths were reported as of Friday night, Riley said…..

Read Full Article Here

Florida toll booths caught acting like TSA and DHS

Uploaded by on Mar 7, 2011

Pay with a big bill and you will get the third degree- how did you get this money? do you have a bank statement-are you a terrorist? What you have a job- arrest him quick!!!

North Korea suffers major blow as rocket crashes

By Ju-min Park

(Reuters) – North Korea’s much hyped long-range rocket apparently crashed into the sea a few minutes after launch on Friday, U.S. and South Korean officials said, dealing a blow to the prestige of the reclusive and impoverished state as well as to its new leader.

Pyongyang had defied international pressure from the United States, the United Nations and others to push ahead with the launch timed to celebrate the 100th birthday of Kim Il-sung, the deceased founder of the state.

Even close ally China had warned against the launch and South Korean intelligence officials have said North Korea may be ready to follow it up with a third nuclear test as it did after a rocket launch in 2009.

“South Korean and U.S. intelligence understand that North Korea’s missile launch failed,” a spokesman for the South’s defense ministry told reporters at a briefing.

North Korea said it wanted the Unha-3 rocket to put a weather satellite into orbit, although critics believed it was designed to enhance its capacity to design a ballistic missile to deliver a nuclear warhead capable of hitting the continental United States.

The rocket crashed in a sea that separates the Korean peninsula from China off the west coast of South Korea after flying 120 km (75 miles) from its launch site close to the Chinese border, officials in Seoul, Washington and Tokyo said…..

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Rep. Mica: GSA officials spent week in Hawaii for one-hour ribbon cutting

By Pete Kasperowic

Rep. John Mica (R-Fla.) said Wednesday that the ongoing probe into the wasteful spending habits of the General Services Administration (GSA) has uncovered that several GSA officials were flown to Hawaii for a week to attend a one-hour ribbon cutting ceremony.

The announcement from the House Transportation & Infrastructure Committee Chairma is the latest in a slow drip of news on GSA’s activities that will culminate in two explosive hearings next week. One of Mica’s subcommittees will hold a hearing Tuesday, and the House Oversight & Government Reform Committee will grill current and former GSA officials on Monday.

Most of the anger from lawmakers has focused on a 2010 junket to Las Vegas that cost more than $800,000, as well as bonuses and expensive gifts given to GSA employees. But Mica said the Hawaii trip is a new low….

Read Full Article Here

[In accordance with Title 17 U.S.C. Section 107, this material is distributed without profit, for research and/or educational purposes. This constitutes ‘FAIR USE’ of any such copyrighted material.]

Politics and Legislation

U.S. Pressing Interpol to Deny Egypt’s Request to Arrest NGO Workers

By Sara Sorcher

The Obama administration is petitioning Interpol to deny Egypt’s request for the arrest of American and other nongovernmental workers accused of illegally operating democracy programs and stirring unrest, in a push to prevent further escalation of the planned prosecution that sparked the worst crisis in U.S.-Egypt relations in three decades.

According to people familiar with the case, State Department counsel Harold Koh and Justice Department Deputy Assistant Attorney General Bruce Swartz are trying to convince Interpol to dismiss as “politically motivated” Egypt’s request for worldwide notices seeking the arrest of some personnel from several nongovernmental organizations that receive U.S. funding.

Cairo’s continued plans to prosecute the NGO workers is a sharp rebuke to the U.S., which has been pressing Egypt to drop the criminal charges against 43 nongovernmental workers—17 of them Americans—from the Washington-based National Democratic Institute, International Republican Institute, Freedom House, and International Center for Journalists.

Tensions between Washington and Cairo eased on March 1 when seven American democracy workers were allowed to leave Egypt after their institutions paid some $5 million in “bail” to lift the travel ban against them. These Americans—including IRI’s Sam LaHood, son of Transportation Secretary Ray LaHood—still face charges in a trial slated to resume on Tuesday, but are not currently wanted for arrest in Egypt.

Shortly after Secretary of State Hillary Rodham Clinton signed off on military aid to Cairo, Egypt asked Interpol to issue so-called red notices for other nongovernmental workers who were not in Egypt at the time, or in some cases, who never worked there at all. As many as 10 of them are Americans. Among them are prominent figures in Washington, like Freedom House’s Charles Dunne, a former U.S. diplomat who also served on the National Security Council under President George W. Bush.

If convicted, they could face a hefty financial penalty and up to five years in an Egyptian prison.

The State and Justice departments, as well as Interpol headquarters in France and its bureau in Washington, all declined to comment on Egypt’s request for the red notices, which are usually viewed as precursors to filing extradition papers. “The United States is making known in every relevant forum, and before every relevant agency, its objection to these politically motivated trials in Egypt,” State Department spokesman Edgar Vasquez told National Journal.

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The surveillance state: growing under a coalition that pledged to reverse it

Proposals for real-time monitoring of email and social media show the government has caved in to the security services

James Ball
guardian.co.uk,

If the government were to suggest monitoring every building that each person in the UK visits, and making a note of every conversation they had, the policy would be seen as electoral suicide. Assurances that the actual content of conversations wouldn’t be recorded would be unlikely to help.

It’s a telling sign of how many real-world freedoms have been sacrificed online, then, that a government that just two years ago pledged to “reverse the rise of the surveillance state” feels able to propose real-time monitoring of all email and social media communications.

The information stored would include the sender and recipient of an email, the time it was sent, and details of the computer it was sent from. This would build a profile of who contacts whom, with what frequency, and from where.

The government says such measures are essential to counter organized crime and terrorism, citing that 95% of organized crime investigations and “every” major counter-terrorism investigation use communications data. However, this statistic does not show if such information was essential or even useful to these investigations – merely that investigators chose to get hold of communications records on almost every occasion, usually via warrant or use of the Regulation of Investigatory Powers Act (Ripa).

Read Full Article Here

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Economy

Gerald Celente on the decline of Empire America

Uploaded by RTAmerica

According to many economists, the days of the US dollar are numbered. As the currency weakens many countries that use the dollar are searching for alternatives. China is expected to be the top world economy in a matter of years. To add insult to injury, the BRICS countries have decided to lose the dollar and use their own currencies. So what does this mean for the US dollar? Gerald Celente, publisher of The Trends Journal, joins us for more.

IMF chief calls on US for more cash

WASHINGTON: IMF managing director Christine Lagarde implored the United States to help back-stop debt-ridden European countries Tuesday, wading neck-deep into bubbling US political waters.

Speaking in the US capital, Lagarde said the 187-nation International Monetary Fund needed more firepower to tackle financial crises raging around the globe, arguing it was in the US interest to pitch in and help Europe.

“Americans might ask themselves: why should what happens in the rest of the world concern us? Don’t we have our own problems?” she said, according to prepared remarks.

“The answer is simple: In today’s world, we cannot afford the luxury of staying in our own mental backyards.”

“If the European economy falters, the American recovery and American jobs would be in jeopardy. So America has a large stake in how Europe fare — and how the world fares.”

Legarde’s comments came 64 years to the day after president Harry Truman signed the Marshall Plan, an unprecedented loan to rebuild post-war Europe.

But her comments will be anathema to politicians in Washington, as the country hurtles toward elections this November.

US officials, including Treasury Secretary Timothy Geithner, have for months trod a thin line between supporting the IMF’s efforts to bolster its resources and actually kicking in some more cash.

Washington has yet to ratify 2010 reforms which would see it send $63 billion more to the IMF’s coffers, under a new quota agreement.

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“MF Global is worth more to its Creditors Dead than it was Alive” says Fund Manger Mark Melin

Welcome to Capital Account. [Lauren blows a whistle on set] Is this what the too big to fail banks should really be worried about? A new emerging market for whistle blowers! First Greg Smith, now a congressional budget officer, who’s next? Earlier this week, Greg Smith, a Goldman Sachs employee, made his resignation public on the pages of the New York Times in an op-ed, accusing his firm of “toxic” practices that put profit first at the expense of customers and possibly the US economy. And Lan T. Pham, the CBO officer, alleges that she was fired for not accepting the wall street party line…pressured not to be so pessimistic about banking and the housing outlooks. In just one of many hard-hitting excepts from her letter, the CBO officer says “I was repeatedly pressured by the CBO Assistant Director, Deborah Lucas…not to write nor discuss issues in the banking sector and mortgage markets that might suggest weakness in these sectors and their consequences on the economy and households…” She was encouraged to push the policies of a Morgan Stanley VP and provided Goldman Sachs analyses as well. That sounds familiar doesn’t it?

Despite those who are speaking out, is there just no winning against the too big to fail banks? Remember, when judge Jed Rakoff rejected the SEC’s 285 million dollar settlement with citigroup over toxic mortgage debt. It was because citigroup wasn’t forced to admit liability. Well, now a federal appeals court has stopped just short of rejecting his rejection, saying he overstepped his authority. Come on! What’s it going to take to see some admission of guilt for conch? And speaking of the need to admit guilt, what ever happened to Jon “the Don” Corzine? The MF Global brokerage trustee says they know where some more money is — they want to distribute another $685 million dollars to customers, while another trustee has been asked by US lawmakers to abort his mission to pay out bonuses to MF Global executives. But just who are these trustees? We’ll expose this and more.

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Wars and Rumors of War

Russia’s FM warns against arming Syrian opposition

AIDA SULTANOVA

BAKU, Azerbaijan (AP) – Russia’s foreign minister warned other nations again Wednesday not to arm the Syrian opposition, saying it would only escalate hostilities.

Speaking on a trip to Azerbaijan, Foreign Minister Sergey Lavrov said the Syrian opposition wouldn’t be able to overwhelm government forces even if it was supplied with weapons from abroad. He warned that a foreign military intervention would lead to even more disastrous consequences for Syria, where President Basher Assay’s forces have violently cracked down on a yearlong uprising in which more than 9,000 people have died.

“Even if they arm the Syrian opposition to the teeth, it won’t be able to defeat the Syrian army,” Lavrov said. “The carnage will go on for many years.”

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Israel issues tender for hundreds of new apartments in East Jerusalem

Housing Ministry seeks to expand controversial neighborhood of Har Homa; critics on the left claim expansion of the neighborhood will harm chances of reaching a peace agreement.

By Nir Hasson

Israel’s Housing Ministry published on Tuesday tenders for the construction of hundreds of new housing units in the east Jerusalem neighborhood of Har Homa, located beyond the Green Line.

The five tenders published by the ministry include 827 new housing units, most of which, 632, are to be part of a new section of the neighborhood called Har Homa Gimel, which is slated to be built on an empty hill.

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Iran says could hit U.S. if it came under attack

(Reuters) – The United States would not be safe from retaliation if Iran is attacked by Washington, the Iran newspaper quoted a senior Revolutionary Guards commander on Tuesday as saying.

“In the face of any attack, we will have a crushing response. In that case, we will not only act in the boundaries of the Middle East and the Persian Gulf, no place in America will be safe from our attacks,” Massoud Jazayeri was quoted as saying by the daily.

Iran would not strike any country first, he said.

Tehran is locked in a dispute with the West over its nuclear program.

Israel and the United States have threatened military action against Iran unless it abandons activities which the West suspects are intended to develop nuclear weapons…..

Read Full Article Here

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Articles of Interest

CNN’s Dana Bash On GSA “American Idle” GSA Video: “This Is Just Really Remarkable”

Uploaded by GOPICYMI

CNN’s Dana Bash reports on the video made by GSA employees bragging about the use of taxpayer money for lavish parties and talent shows

Federal judge refuses to halt separation hearing for ‘tea party Marine’

Despite a coalition of lawyers filing suit to stop the proceedings, a “tea party Marine” facing discharge from the Marine Corps for criticizing President Barack Obama will have to go through with a separation hearing on Thursday.

On Wednesday a federal judge refused to stop the separation hearing for Sgt. Gary Stein, a Camp Pendleton Marine facing an “‘other than honorable’ discharge from the military for posting criticisms of the commander in chief on his ‘Armed Forces Tea Party’ Facebook page,” Fox 5 in San Diego reported.

Read Full Article Here

Russia working on electromagnetic radiation guns

Guns will use electromagnetic radiation
Rays will attack victims’ central nervous system
Have all your Jedi fantasies finally come true?

WHILE many believed it to be an April Fool’s Day joke, Vladimir Putin has confirmed Russia has been testing mind-bending psychotronic guns that can effectively turn people into zombies.

The futuristic weapons – which attack their victims’ central nervous system – are being developed by scientists and could be used against Russia’s enemies and even its own dissidents by the end of the decade.

Mr Putin has described the guns, which use electromagnetic radiation like that found in microwave ovens, as entirely new instruments for achieving political and strategic goals.

Plans to introduce the super-weapons were announced by Russian defence minister Anatoly Serdyukov.

While the technology has been around for some time, MrTsyganok said the guns were recently tested for crowd control purposes.

Read Full Article Here

National Responder Support Camp (NRSC)
Solicitation Number: HSFE70-12-R-0033
Agency: Department of Homeland Security
Office: Federal Emergency Management Agency
Location: Logistics Branch

Goto the bottom and download the pdf of the final draft dated March 2012 (Draft HSFE70-12-R-0033.pdf (1,390.63 Kb) Description: Draft Soliciation)

Here are my issues with this RFP:

1) Page 14 (C.3.5)- Daily logs. I guess you could say this is legit but then added with the rest I don’t like it at all.

2) Page 19 (C.6.0)- This deals with the ID cards that must be issued.

3) Page 22 shows what reports are required and to whom they go to, how often, and what is to be covered.

4) Page 26 (E.3) Starts the performance evaluation and modes of surveillance to ensure reports are accurate.

5) Page 69 Section J- This starts getting into some of the requirements.

6) Page 74 starts the “Scenario’s”.

7) Page 75 has the gender separation and the separate area for security personnel

This is a large file and probably has a lot more than what I covered.

Read it for yourself Here

 

 

[In accordance with Title 17 U.S.C. Section 107, this material is distributed without profit, for research and/or educational purposes. This constitutes ‘FAIR USE’ of any such copyrighted material.]

Politics and Legislation

Top Obama Fundraiser Accused Of Fraud

A major fundraiser for the re-election campaign of US President Barack Obama has been accused of fraud and dodging creditors, a report says.

As Bloomberg runs reports revealing New York City is the top source of donations for both the Obama and Romney campaigns news surfaces that one of Obama’s top donors and fundraisers, the New York based Abaka Assongba, has been accused of fraud.

According to reports, Abaka is accused of defrauding a Swiss businessman of $650,000 after engaging him in an email scam and then using that money to buy a multi-million dollar home in Florida.

Accompanying the fraud charges against Abaka are other embarrassments for the Obama campaign, including revalatoins of a 2004 eviction for owing $5,000 in back rent and another court case where she was ordered to pay $10,000 for back rent and damage.

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Man whose WMD lies led to 100,000 deaths confesses all

Defector tells how US officials ‘sexed up’ his fictions to make the case for 2003 invasion

A man whose lies helped to make the case for invading Iraq – starting a nine-year war costing more than 100,000 lives and hundreds of billions of pounds – will come clean in his first British television interview tomorrow.

“Curveball”, the Iraqi defector who fabricated claims about Iraq’s weapons of mass destruction, smiles as he confirms how he made the whole thing up. It was a confidence trick that changed the course of history, with Rafid Ahmed Alwan al-Janabi’s lies used to justify the Iraq war.

He tries to defend his actions: “My main purpose was to topple the tyrant in Iraq because the longer this dictator remains in power, the more the Iraqi people will suffer from this regime’s oppression.”

The chemical engineer claimed to have overseen the building of a mobile biological laboratory when he sought political asylum in Germany in 1999. His lies were presented as “facts and conclusions based on solid intelligence” by Colin Powell, US Secretary of State, when making the case for war at the UN Security Council in February 2003.

But Mr Janabi, speaking in a two-part series, Modern Spies, starting tomorrow on BBC2, says none of it was true. When it is put to him “we went to war in Iraq on a lie. And that lie was your lie”, he simply replies: “Yes.”

US officials “sexed up” Mr Janabi’s drawings of mobile biological weapons labs to make them more presentable, admits Colonel Lawrence Wilkerson, General Powell’s former chief of staff. “I brought the White House team in to do the graphics,” he says, adding how “intelligence was being worked to fit around the policy”.

As for his former boss: “I don’t see any way on this earth that Secretary Powell doesn’t feel almost a rage about Curveball and the way he was used in regards to that intelligence.”

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Economy

Stockton, Calif., Could Become Nation’s Biggest Municipal Bankruptcy

Stockton, Calif. is quite at home on lists of dubious distinctions.

This Northern California city has been variously listed as the city with the second-highest home-foreclosure rate of a major U.S. metropolis, the second-highest violent crime rate in California, and two times the frontrunner of Forbes magazine’s “America’s Most Miserable Cities.”

Now Stockton is hoping to avoid its next bleak title, that of biggest municipality in U.S. history to enter bankruptcy.

After Heyday, Payday

Eighty miles east of San Francisco and home to nearly 300,000 people, Stockton has cycled through decades of city-planning booms and crime-ridden busts.

These days many residents are just doing what they can to stay safe and survive. Unemployment in the city tops 16 percent. Foreclosures are at an all-time high. Homeless shelters are out of beds. The police force has shrunk 25 percent and this year’s homicide total may surpass last year’s record high of 58.

In the early 2000s, after years of decline, Stockton began pouring money into revitalization projects. Developers built residential subdivisions, a theater complex, sports arena, waterfront walkway and marina.

City coffers bulged on the resulting property tax increases, and city employee contracts ballooned. One month of city employment meant eligibility for full retiree health care. Today, the city’s long-term health care liability totals more than $400 million. There are 94 pensions each worth at least $100,000 annually.

“Stockton overcommitted to long-term obligations that even under the best of times the city could not afford. So if there was not a recession, the city would have been having the conversation we’re having in four or five years,” said City Manager Bob Deis in a recent Time magazine interview.

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Eurozone unemployment hits 15-year high

By Michael Millar

LONDON (SHARECAST) – Unemployment across the countries that use the euro hit a 15-year high of 10.8 per cent in February.

Figures from the European Commission’s official statistics agency, eurostat, showed unemployment was up from 10.7% in January and compared to 10.0% in February 2011.

The figures laid bare the vast economic differences between 17 countries using the euro.

Among the Member States, the lowest unemployment rates were recorded in Austria (4.2%), the Netherlands (4.9%), Luxembourg (5.2%) and Germany (5.7%).

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Will the US dollar fall to the Chinese Yuan?

Uploaded by RTAmerica on Apr 3, 2012

Over the years the US dollar has become weaker and weaker, and it seems the Chinese Yuan is getting stronger and stronger. In a few years China’s GDP is believed to surpass the US GDP making it the strongest in the world. Recently at the BRICS annual meeting, the five fastest growing countries decided to ditch the dollar and use their own currencies in mutual trade putting the buck almighty in jeopardy. Michael T. Snyder, founder of TheEconomicCollapseBlog.com, joins us to discuss what the future holds for the US dollar.

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Wars and Rumors of War

Pentagon activates missile defenses for North Korean launch

The Pentagon recently activated its global missile shield in anticipation of North Korea’s launch of a long-range missile, according to defense officials.

The measures include stepped-up electronic monitoring, deployment of missile interceptor ships, and activation of radar networks to areas near the Korean peninsula and western Pacific.

Three interceptor ships near Japan and the Philippines, as well as U.S.-based interceptors, are ready to shoot down the North Korean missile if space-, land-, and sea-based sensors determine its flight path is targeted at the United States or U.S. allies, said officials who spoke on condition of anonymity.

The Obama administration will regard any launch by North Korea as a violation of U.N. Security Council resolutions regardless of whether the North Koreans claim the rocket test is for space launch purposes, the officials said. The technology and rocketry used for a space launch is nearly identical to that used with ballistic missiles that carry a warhead, they said.

Also, because the payload or warhead of the test launch cannot be determined prior to launch, the Obama administration decided to activate the missile defense system.

According to U.S. officials, current intelligence assessments indicate the North Korean missile will be launched from a base called Tongchang-ri, located on a west coast peninsula north of Pyongyang between April 12 and April 15…..

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US draws up plans for nuclear drones

Technology is designed to increase flying time ‘from days to months’, along with power available for weapons systems

Nick Fielding

American scientists have drawn up plans for a new generation of nuclear-powered drones capable of flying over remote regions of the world for months on end without refuelling.

The blueprints for the new drones, which have been developed by Sandia National Laboratories – the US government’s principal nuclear research and development agency – and defence contractor Northrop Grumman, were designed to increase flying time “from days to months” while making more power available for operating equipment, according to a project summary published by Sandia.

“It’s pretty terrifying prospect,” said Chris Coles of Drone Wars UK, which campaigns against the increasing use of drones for both military and civilian purposes. “Drones are much less safe than other aircraft and tend to crash a lot. There is a major push by this industry to increase the use of drones and both the public and government are struggling to keep up with the implications.”

The highly sensitive research into what is termed “ultra-persistence technologies” set out to solve three problems associated with drones: insufficient “hang time” over a potential target; lack of power for running sophisticated surveillance and weapons systems; and lack of communications capacity.

The Sandia-Northrop Grumman team looked at numerous different power systems for large- and medium-sized drones before settling on a nuclear solution. Northrop Grumman is known to have patented a drone equipped with a helium-cooled nuclear reactor as long ago as 1986, and has previously worked on nuclear projects with the US air force research laboratory. Designs for nuclear-powered aircraft are known to go back as far as the 1950s.

The research team found that the nuclear drones were able to provide far more surveillance time and intelligence information per mission compared to other technologies, and also to reduce the considerable costs of support systems – eliminating the need, for example, for forward bases and fuel supplies in remote and possibly hostile areas.

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U.S. Joins Effort to Equip and Pay Rebels in Syria

By STEVEN LEE MYERS

ISTANBUL — The United States and dozens of other countries moved closer on Sunday to direct intervention in the fighting in Syria, with Arab nations pledging $100 million to pay opposition fighters and the Obama administration agreeing to send communications equipment to help rebels organize and evade Syria’s military, according to participants gathered here.

The moves reflected a growing consensus, at least among the officials who met here this weekend under the rubric “Friends of Syria,” that mediation efforts by the United Nations peace envoy, Kofi Annan, were failing to halt the violence that is heading into its second year in Syria and that more forceful action was needed.

With Russia and China blocking United Nations measures that could open the way for military action, the countries lined up against the government of President Bashar al-Assad sought to bolster Syria’s beleaguered opposition through means that seemed to stretch the definition of humanitarian assistance and blur the line between so-called lethal and nonlethal support.

There remains no agreement on arming the rebels, as countries like Saudi Arabia and some members of Congress have called for, largely because of the uncertainty regarding who exactly would receive the arms.

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Articles of Interest

Lawyer for soldier accused of Afghan slaughter: ‘almost complete information blackout’

Madison Ruppert

John Henry Browne, the attorney for Staff Sergeant Robert Bales, the man accused of single-handedly massacring 17 Afghan villagers, is now accusing the United States government of “an almost complete information blackout” which is blocking him from preparing a proper defense for Bales.

Browne alleges that he and his legal team has been prevented from being able to interview the witnesses to the tragic incident as well as the injured civilians in southern Afghanistan.

“We were expecting a lot more cooperation. The prosecutors in this case promised us a lot of cooperation which we’re just not getting,” Browne said to reporters in Seattle, Washington.

“We are facing an almost complete information blackout from the government, which is having a devastating effect on our ability to investigate the charges preferred against our client,” he added.

38-year-old Bales allegedly strolled out of his base in Kandahar, a southern Afghan province, without being stopped or questioned, early on March 11, after which he conducted a merciless, calculated assault on two villages killing 17 civilians, including women and children.

However, this case has been rife with inconsistencies and unanswered questions, especially surrounding the possibility of multiple soldiers being involved in the tragic killings.

Indeed, an Afghan parliamentary probe concluded that there were 15-20 U.S. soldiers involved in the murders. This finding was seemingly contradicted by a report from AP which cited alleged statements from two officials who did not participate in the probe and the U.S. government has claimed that only Bales was involved from day one.

Furthermore, child witnesses provided accounts to a journalist for Australia’s SBS Dateline which completely contradict the U.S.’s official account.

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Colombia: 8 Israelis suspected of drug trafficking

Local media reports claim Israeli ‘former military men’ also suspected of money laundering, exploitation of minors. Suspects deny allegations: ‘We’re legit businessmen’

Eight Israelis were arrested in Colombia on suspicion of drug trafficking, money laundering and exploitation of minors, the country’s chief prosecutor told local media outlets on Tuesday.

The suspects, who were described in the reports as “former military men,” reside in the city of Taganga. According to one of the reports, they are suspected of sexually exploiting teenage girls.

As part of a separate investigation, the suspects are also being questioned about their ties to a local drug trafficking ring.

The chief prosecutor noted that the Israeli men were under surveillance during the past year, after arousing the suspicion of local police officers and community leaders.

One of the reports claimed that police obtained tape recordings, some in Hebrew, which might incriminate the suspects.

The suspects denied the allegations, claiming that they were legitimate businessmen.

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Who is Kofi Annan? The United Nations “Peacekeeper” Handpicked by the CIA

by Thierry Meyssan

Although Kofi Annan’s track record at the UN is an indisputable success in terms of management and efficiency, he has been sharply criticized for his political shortcomings. As Secretary General, he aspired to bring the Organization into line with the unipolar world and the globalization of U.S. hegemony. He called into question the ideological foundations of the UN and undermined its ability to prevent conflicts. Notwithstanding, he is today in charge of resolving the Syrian crisis.

Former UN Secretary General and Nobel Peace Prize, Kofi Annan, has been designated by Ban Ki-moon and Nabil El Arabi as joint special envoy to negotiate a peaceful solution to the Syrian crisis. With Annan’s extraordinary experience and shiny brand image, his appointment was welcomed by all.

What does this top international official really represent? Who propelled him to the highest-ranking positions? What were his political choices, and what are his current commitments? These questions are met with a discreet silence, as if his previous functions were in themselves a guarantee of neutrality.
Handpicked and trained by the Ford Foundation and the CIA

His former colleagues praise him for his thoughtfulness, his intelligence and subtlety. A very charismatic personality, Kofi Annan left a strong imprint behind him because he did not behave simply as the “secretary” of the UN, but more like its “general,” by taking initiatives that revivified an organization that was mired in bureaucracy. All that is known and has been repeated ad nauseam. His exceptional professional qualities earned him the Nobel Peace Prize, although this honor in theory should have been bestowed for personal political commitment, not a management career.

Kofi and his twin sister Efua Atta were born on 8 April 1938, into an aristocratic family of the British colony of the Gold Coast. His father was the tribal chief of the Fante people and the elected governor of Asante province. Although he opposed British rule, he was a faithful servant of the Crown. With other notables, he took part in the first decolonization movement, but looked upon the revolutionary fervor of Kwame Nkrumah with suspicion and anxiety.

In any event, Nkrumah’s efforts led to the independence of the country in 1957 under the name of Ghana. Kofi was then 19 years old. Though not involved in the revolution, he became vice-president of the new National Student Association. It was then that he was spotted by a headhunter from the Ford Foundation who incorporated him into a program for “young leaders.” From there, he was invited to follow a summer course at Harvard University. Having noticed his enthusiasm for the United States, the Ford Foundation offered to sponsor his complete studies, first in economics at Macalester College in Minnesota, followed by international relations at the Graduate Institute of International Studies in Geneva.

After the Second World War, the Ford Foundation, created by famous industrialist Henry Ford, became an unofficial instrument of U.S. foreign policy, providing a respectable facade for the activities of the CIA [1].

Kofi Annan’s overseas study period (1959-1961) coincided with the most difficult years of the African-American civil rights movement (the start of Martin Luther King’s Birmingham campaign). He saw it as an extension of the decolonization he had witnessed in Ghana, but once again did not get involved.

Impressed with Annan’s academic achievements and political discretion, his U.S. mentors opened for him the doors of the World Health Organization, where he landed his first job. After three years at WHO headquarters in Geneva, he was appointed to the Economic Commission for Africa based in Addis Ababa. However, not sufficiently qualified to pursue a career at the UN, he returned to the United States to take up management studies at the Massachusetts Institute of Technology (MIT) (1971-1972). He then attempted a comeback in his home country as director of tourism development, but found himself perpetually at odds with the military government of General Acheampong; he gave up and returned to the United Nations in 1976.

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James Murdoch quits BSkyB to save hacking scandal damage

Published on Apr 3, 2012 by Euronews

http://www.euronews.com/ James Murdoch has quit as chairman of British pay-TV group BSkyB.

Rupert Murdoch’s son has been under fire for his handling of the phone hacking scandal at the News of the World newspaper that has convulsed the Murdoch’s media empire.

James Murdoch is stepping down just weeks before a government report is published into reporting practices at the News of the World.

In a statement he said his resignation was to help distance BSkyB from the scandal: “I am aware that my role as Chairman could become a lightning rod for BSkyB and I believe that my resignation will help to ensure that there is no false conflation with events at a separate organisation.”

Murdoch added he was “determined that the interests of BSkyB should not be undermined by matters outside the scope of this company.”

The 39-year-old is a previous chairman of News International, News Corp’s British newspaper arm that was the publisher of the News of the World tabloid at the heart of the scandal before it was shut down last year.

The British TV regulator is investigating whether BSkyB is a “fit and proper” owner of a broadcast licence given its close relationship with Murdoch and the wider problems at Murdoch’s News Corp, which owns 39-percent of the TV company.

Murdoch, who was previously chief executive of BSkyB, was dealt a heavy blow last November when more than 40 percent of the company’s independent shareholders failed to back his re-election as chairman.

Food Safety

 

McDonald’s Apologizes to Chinese Consumers for Food Safety Violations

 

By Helena Bottemiller

Just weeks after launching an advertising campaign focused on food and quality safety in China, McDonalds is under fire for local food safety violations. State-run China Central Television accused the company of selling chicken wings more than an hour and…

http://www.foodsafetynews.com/2012/03/mcdonalds-apologizes-to-chinese-consumers-for-food-safety-violations/?utm_source=newsletter&utm_medium=email&utm_campaign=120319

 

Obama agency rules Pepsi’s use of aborted fetal cells in soft drinks

constitutes ‘ordinary business operations’

 

By Ethan A. Huff,
(NaturalNews) The Obama Administration has given its blessing to PepsiCo to continue utilizing the services of a company that produces flavor chemicals for the beverage giant using aborted human fetal tissue. LifeSiteNews.com reports that the Obama Security and Exchange Commission (SEC) has decided that PepsiCo’s arrangement with San Diego, CalSEC.-based Senomyx, which produces flavor enhancing chemicals for Pepsi using human embryonic kidney tissue, simply constitutes “ordinary business operations…

Health

 

Yale researchers link cell phone use during pregnancy to behavioral problems in children

 

These behaviors bear a resemblance to what is found in attention deficit hyperactivity disorder, known as ADHD, according to Taylor.

Researchers found that greater exposure to cell phone radiation led to more pronounced behavioral effects. “We did show clearly that this is dose responsive,” Taylor says.

He is also is quick to say the findings don’t mean people should give up their cell phones.

“I wouldn’t want to scare people, that’s very important,” Taylor says. “There are probably some levels of exposure that are safe. But it bears further study.”

http://saratogian.com/articles/2012/03/15/news/doc4f6284639c31d280625381.txt?viewmode=2

 

Heart attacks without chest pain more common than thought, especially among women

 

By PF Louis,
(NaturalNews) The CDC reports that approximately 800,000 first time heart attacks occur annually. Ignoring iatrogenic deaths (death by medicine), heart disease is still the number one killer for both men and women. However, the common perception of chest pain or discomfort as a signal that a heart attack is occurring are less than one normally thinks, especially among younger women under 45. A study led by Dr. John Canto at the Watson Clinic in Lakeland, Florida, used medical records in a national…

Sweetened drinks increase risk of heart disease in men by twenty percent

 

By John Phillip,
(NaturalNews) Researchers publishing the results of a study in the prestigious American Heart Association journal Circulation have found that men who drank a 12-ounce sugar-sweetened beverage a day had a 20 percent higher risk of heart disease compared to men who didn’t drink any sugar-sweetened drinks. This should come as no surprise as sweetened (and calorie-free) beverages have come under scrutiny for contributing to increased risk of potentially fatal conditions such as diabetes, dementia, stroke…

High manganese levels making air breathing hazardous in some residential areas

 

By J. D. Heyes,
(NaturalNews) A new study has found there are higher levels of potentially toxic manganese in a number of residential neighborhoods that are located near industrial or manufacturing sites at various locations around the country. The study, conducted by researchers from Kansas State University (KSU), Columbia University and Johns Hopkins Bloomberg School of Public Health and Department of Environmental Health Sciences, found varying levels of manganese in analyzed samples of airborne particulate…

Holistic Health

 

How juicing can improve your health

 

By Kim Evans,
(NaturalNews) Adding fresh juices to your diet can be one of the best everyday things you can do for your health. This is the case because with juicing you can take in far more nutrients from fresh fruits and vegetables than you ever could just by eating them straight. And these nutrients both protect us from disease and boost our health and vitality. For example, it’s easy to consume the nutrients of a couple of pounds of carrots in a day if you juice them. And while carrots are well known to.

Colloidail silver the perfect mouthwash? Scientists find rinsing mouth with silver treats infections

 

By Jonathan Benson,

(NaturalNews) The amazing infection-treating properties of silver seem to be flooding the pages of scientific journals these days, as researchers, scientists, and medical experts are finally fessing up to the fact that this unique element possesses healing properties far superior to pharmaceutical antibiotics and drugs. And a new study published in the Society for Applied Microbiology journal Letters in Applied Microbiology reveals that silver is fully capable of killing yeast-based mouth infections…

How vitamin D helps prevent lung cancer

 

By Aurora Geib,
(NaturalNews) Increasing vitamin D may now be a matter of life or death, as recent studies have shown that it may play a vital role in the fight against lung cancer. To date, lung cancer is one of the three most common cancers that kill men and women in developed countries with a statistic of one million deaths every year. Researchers from the University of California at San Diego discovered a correlative relationship between higher rates of lung cancer and less exposure to the sun. Cancer…

Pet Health

 

Could Your Pet Be Harboring This Miserable Little Parasite?

 

Uploaded by MercolaHealthyPets

Dr. Karen Becker, a proactive and integrative wellness veterinarian discusses giardia parasite in pets.

http://healthypets.mercola.com/sites/healthypets/archive/2012/03/19/giardia-infection-on-pets.aspx

 

Recalls

 

Canada Recalls Seven Months Worth of Frozen Ground Beef

 

By News Desk

After a series of earlier recalls, the Canadian Food Inspection Agency (CFIA) has now recalled all ground beef from New Food Classics ( Establishment 761) that was processed between July 1, 2011 and Feb. 15, 2012 because it may be…

http://www.foodsafetynews.com/2012/03/canada-calls-back-seven-months-of-frozen-ground-beef/?utm_source=newsletter&utm_medium=email&utm_campaign=120319

 

Glass Fragments in Fruit Beverages

 

By Julia Thomas

The Canadian Food Inspection Agency (CFIA) and AllJuice International are advising customers not to consume certain AllJuice products because they may contain harmful glass fragments.There have been no injuries reported. The recalled juices, in 73 mL glass bottles, were distributed in…

http://www.foodsafetynews.com/2012/03/glass-fragments-in-fruit-beverages/?utm_source=newsletter&utm_medium=email&utm_campaign=120319

 

Allergen Alert

 

Allergen Alert: Flavored Peanuts With Milk

 

By Julia Thomas

The Canadian Food Inspection Agency (CFIA) expanded its warning issued on March 15, 2012 to include the Koh-Kae brand snack products listed below because the products contain milk not declared on the label. There have been no reported illnesses associated…

http://www.foodsafetynews.com/2012/03/allergen-alert-peanut-snacks-with-milk/?utm_source=newsletter&utm_medium=email&utm_campaign=120319