Tag Archives: Inflation

International Currencies Increasingly Rejected in the Face of Inflation

International Currencies Increasingly Rejected in the Face of Inflation

Activist Post

Currency collapse is hardly something new. Especially when that currency is backed by nothing. In G. Edward Griffin’s seminal work, The Creature From Jekyll Island, he states that once the “business of banking” by fiat began:

This led immediately to what would become an almost unbroken record from then to the present: a record of inflation, booms and busts, suspension of payments, bank failures, repudiation of currencies, and recurring spasms o economic chaos. (pg. 184)

Since this story of banking is so oft-repeated, there are also a fair number of examples of how prosperity — or at least stability and self-sufficiency — was restored afterward. In nearly every case, it came from desperate, but determined individuals who shrugged off the shackles of central banking, and either returned to the currency they used previous to government hijacking, restored pre-money barter systems, or created something entirely new.

The modern-day, planet-wide collapse of fiat currencies is providing additional real-time examples of how forsaken citizens are taking matters into their own hands. Let us look at just the two most affected: Greece and Spain.

Greece

It is a travesty that the nation where democracy and gold-backed coinage was first developed should become the poster child of a whirling black hole of debt and dependency brought on by autocratic rule. Regardless, despite the austerity riots filling city streets to make demands, there are indications that some communities are finished with demanding anything from a provably corrupt government that is literally foreign to their best interests.

The video below illustrates the rebirth of diverse means of exchange such as time banks, barter networks, barter currency, and “priceless” commodities in Greece:

Spain

The Daily Mail reports on a town of 3,000 called Villamayor de Santiago, where “rebellious” locals have reintroduced the peseta in a project to thwart the failing euro after inflation has driven up the price of essential goods 43 per cent. The cost of bread is up by 49 per cent, milk 48 per cent, and the price of potatoes is up 116 per cent. All while a third of this small town is out of work.

Around 30 shops in the historic town, 75 miles south-east of Madrid, started accepting pesetas last month after urging customers to dig out any old notes and coins they had forgotten about.

(…)

News quickly spread, and shoppers from neighbouring villages and towns have been flocking there to spend the old currency.

After a one-month field test, the enthusiasm for the plan has ensured its renewal. Meanwhile, four other Spanish towns have reintroduced the peseta, as the country goes through an employment crisis worse than that of Greece, and the country’s credit rating has been knocked down another two notches.

America

The two modern examples of Greece and Spain, echo America’s own colonial history. Following China, America was the second location in the world to test fiat currency at the behest of the British Empire. The story is fully recounted in Chapter 8 of The Creature From Jekyll Island and is well worth a full read, but the salient point is that once colonists were repeatedly subjected to hyperinflation and depression through the overprinting of money, as well as having been subjected to broken promises and tyrannical rule by the Bank of England through the removal of coins, barter became a means of exchange and survival. Tobacco was the first commodity, but nearly anything of intrinsic value served equally well in restoring a semblance of power to individuals as a means for their self-determination.

Later, the colonists who disobeyed government dictates brought out their limited supplies of hoarded coins and re-built from the ground up using sound economic principles. Those colonies which used sound money, such as Massachusetts, won trade from fiat-money colonies like Rhode Island.

As Griffin states:

After the colonies had returned to coin, prices quickly found their natural equilibrium and then stayed at that point, even during the Seven Years War and the disruption of trade that occurred immediately prior to the Revolution. There is no better example of the fact that economic systems in distress can and do recover rapidly if government does not interfere with the natural healing process. (pg. 160)

And Ben Franklin proclaimed that King George III taking away the ability of the colonies to create their own currency was the true reason for the Revolutionary War:

The colonies would gladly have borne the little tax on tea and other matters had it not been that England took away from the colonies their money, which created unemployment and dissatisfaction. The inability of colonists to get power to issue their own money permanently out of the hands of George III and the international bankers was the prime reason for the Revolutionary War.

And this is the good news: what’s old seems to be new again; citizens within collapsed economies are once again turning their backs on centralized international government, ignoring their unjust policies, and instead are returning to the far simpler and more logical means of self-sufficiency and prosperity — their own inherent community strength built upon real production and trade between individuals. In short, decentralization.

Americans would do well not to forget that the actions taken by individuals in other severely collapsed countries are those also entrenched in America’s history. Let us all observe closely, then, how the first dominoes that have fallen in the latest cycle of depression are choosing to right themselves; for it would be at our peril to ignore history, and the momentum that already has pushed others toward the same foregone conclusion.

Our forgetfulness is perhaps the root cause of our repeated inability to sustain ourselves, until another collapse scenario forces us to take action.

For an instructive case study in the risks imposed on nations by international banking interests, as well as how anyone can survive the inevitable aftermath, please view the story of Argentina below:

SOURCE

Too Young to Fight in Cage?

Parents of cage-fighting boys aged 8 and 9 could be jailed for child cruelty (source: www.fightpractice.com)


Brutal: The boys are not wearing padding or head gear as they grapple and slam each other into the canvas

By Jaya Narain

Parents who encourage their young children to take part in cage fighting contests could be jailed for child cruelty, legal experts warn.

They face sentences of up to six months for allowing a boy or girl of primary school age to take part in the sport – described as ‘barbaric’ by the Culture Secretary.

And a Preston social club which hosted the boys’ fight reported in the Mail yesterday is to be investigated over whether it broke its licence conditions.

The revelations come after a video emerged showing Kian MacKinson, nine, and a boy of eight, whose father has requested he remain anonymous, kicking, shoving and grappling in front of baying adults.

The footage caused outrage among child and medical experts, who called for a police and social services investigation.


Upsetting: The young boy is seen here crying in the middle of a fight, and is then attended by medical experts who check if he can carry on with the bout Battle: Kian MacKinson, nine, with an eight-year-old whose father has asked for his face to be obscured

A source at the Crown Prosecution Service said: ‘A young child being forced to take part in any violent sport could constitute child cruelty.

As such, a failure to protect that child from harm could lead to a minimum 12-week sentence or a maximum 26-week sentence.’ Social services bosses in Lancashire confirmed they had launched an inquiry into the cage fighting, which is also known as mixed martial arts, to ‘consider any child safety concerns’.

Culture Secretary Jeremy Hunt yesterday condemned the fighting among children as young as eight as ‘barbaric’.

‘Getting more young people doing sport is great but I do ask myself whether it really does have to be in a cage,’ he said.

‘It feels very barbaric and I know there are concerns about children that young doing a sport like that.’

He added he was ‘shocked and surprised’ by claims there were no restrictions on children appearing in such adult environments.

His comments came after the British Medical Association, the NSPCC and Safechild branded child cage fighting ‘disturbing and sick’. A British Association of Martial Arts spokesman insisted: ‘Children this young shouldn’t be involved in cage fighting.’

Lancashire Police officers have decided to take no further action either on a child safety level or licensing of the premises.

It emerged last night, however, that council chiefs have ordered a licence review for the Greenlands Labour Club and will ask the venue not to put on any similar events involving juveniles.

The deputy leader of Preston City Council, John Swindells, said: ‘I am appalled by the incident of cage fighting involving children taking place in Preston.

‘Having checked the club’s licence there is a condition that children should not be on the premises at public events after 6pm and I think it needs to be looked into whether this condition has been breached.

Parental support: Kian with his father Nick Hartley, the youngster features in the shocking video which shows hundreds of baying adults goading the primary-age boys to fight each other

Professional appearance: Just like in an adult event, the tiny fighters have an entourage.

Seconds out: The boys are brought together in the middle of the cage fighting ring, prepared to do battle

Grappling: The pair begin their fight slowly, testing out the space between them as they start their bout

‘As such, I have now made a request for the licence at Greenlands Labour Club to be reviewed. A formal licensing review process will now follow.’

That could take up to three months as the club is allowed 28 days to make representations on the matter.

A similar period is then opened up for members of the public to have their say.

Even some mma gear reviews have mention the shocking video that emerged on Wednesday shows Kian and the unnamed boy fighting without protective padding or head gear.

One of them is shown apparently receiving medical attention for a leg injury and bursting into tears.

Fight: Before long, they have hit the canvas and take turns in pinning each other down

Young fighters: The children wear no padding or headguards for the ten minute bout in Preston

The event was held almost a fortnight ago with about 250 adults paying £25 a ticket to watch 14 fights. The other clashes involved semi-professional adults.

Sources said the night was a boisterous alcohol-fuelled affair.

Sharefight, the company commissioned to film the event, said the video had been removed from the internet ‘out of respect’ for parents and others who had shown concern.

The event took place in a ‘safe environment’, a spokesman added.

Greenlands Labour Club has also defended its decision to hold the event.

Victory: The fight ends to cheers from the adoring crowd

Read more: SOURCE

The President Has The “Doomsday” Plane. Who’s going to save you?

Doomsday Plane’ Would Save President and Joint Chiefs in Apocalypse Scenario

Custom Search

By MICHAEL MURRAY

In the event of nuclear war, a powerful meteor strike or even a zombie apocalypse, the thoroughly protected doomsday plane is ready to keep the president, secretary of defense, Joint Chiefs of Staff and other key personnel in the air and out of danger. It may not deflect a Twitter photo scandal, but it can outrun a nuclear explosion and stay in the air for days without refueling.

The flight team for the E-4B, its military codename, sleeps nearby and is ready to scramble in five minutes. It was mobilized in the tumultuous hours after planes crashed into the World Trade Center, the Pentagon and southern Pennsylvania on 9/11.

“If the command centers that are on the ground in the United States have a failure of some sort, or attack, we immediately get airborne. We’re on alert 24/7, 365,” Captain W. Scott “Easy” Ryder, Commander, NAOC, told ABC News’ Diane Sawyer as she traveled to Afghanistan with Secretary of Defense Robert Gates on the apocalypse-proof plane. “Constantly there’s at least one alert airplane waiting to get airborne.”

All E-4B aircraft are assigned to the 55th Wing, Offutt Air Force Base, Neb. The modified 747s can travel at speeds up to 620 miles per hour, 40 miles per hour faster than their commercial counterparts.

The $223 million aircraft is outfitted with an electromagnetic pulse shield to protect its 165,000 pounds of advanced electronics. Thermo-radiation shields also protect the plane in the event of a nuclear strike.

A highly-trained security team travels with the plane.

“The first people off of the airplane are these guys, they’ll position themselves appropriately around the airplane,
” Ryder said to ABC News. “The secretary also has his own small security staff that does similar things. So these guys are predominately designed to protect our airplane, and the secretary’s staff protects him, as an individual.”

Even though it carries VIPs, their staff and security personnel, the plane is highly fuel efficient. The plane can stay in-flight for days without refueling, a necessity if circumstances demanded the plane’s use by the nation’s top officials.

A precision tech team mans the sensitive electronic technology found on the plan. There is so much powerful electrical equipment onboard a specially upgraded air-conditioning system is necessary to keep it cool and functional.

“Give us the phone number of anybody, anytime, anyplace, anywhere on earth, we can get a hold of them,
” Master Sgt. Joe Stuart, US Air Force, told Diane Sawyer.

It can even communicate with submerged submarines by dropping a five-mile-long cable out the back of the plane. “[We] drop is down and [it] transmits coded message traffic to US submarines,” Ryder told ABC News.

Although the extreme amount of survival technology on the plane more than makes up for it, the plane lacks the amenities found in bases on the ground.

“It’s like being Fedexed
,” Gates told Sawyer. “It’s fairly Spartan, with no windows or anything.”

Even the Secretary of Defense only gets a tiny bathroom with a sink, but no shower. A small trade-off for being able to board this plane as the rest of us dive for cover in a worst-case scenario.

Some more details on the general characteristics of the plane, according to the official U.S. Air Force website:

Primary Function: Airborne operations center

Contractor: Boeing Aerospace Co.

Power Plant: Four General Electric CF6-50E2 turbofan engines

Thrust: 52,500 pounds each engine

Wingspan: 195 feet, 8 inches (59.7 meters)

Length: 231 feet, 4 inches (70.5 meters)

Height: 63 feet, 5 inches (19.3 meters)

Weight: 410,000 pounds (185,973 kilograms)

Maximum Takeoff Weight: 800,000 pounds (360,000 kilograms)

Fuel Capacity: 410,000 (185,973 kilograms)

Payload: communications gear permanently installed on aircraft

Speed: 602 miles per hour (523 knots)

Range: 6,200 nautical miles

Ceiling: Above 30,000 feet (9,091 meters)

Crew: Up to 112 (flight crew and mission crew)

Unit Cost: $223.2 million (fiscal 98 constant dollars)

Initial operating capability: January 1980

Inventory: Active force, 4

video platformvideo managementvideo solutionsvideo player
SOURCE

No Jobs, No Peace……*#$% the Police?


Bloomberg: Jobs crisis could spark riots here

By Aaron Smith @CNNMoney

NEW YORK (CNNMoney) — New York City Mayor Michael Bloomberg is worried that high U.S. unemployment could lead to the same kind of riots here that have swept through Europe and North Africa.

“You have a lot of kids graduating college, [who] can’t find jobs,
” said Bloomberg, during his weekly radio show on Friday. “That’s what happened in Cairo. That’s what happened in Madrid. You don’t want those kinds of riots here.

That was the mayor’s response when asked about the poverty rate, which rose to 15.1% in 2010, its highest level since 1993, according to census data released Tuesday. About 46.2 million people are now living in poverty, 2.6 million more than last year.

“The public is not happy,”
he said. “The public knows there is something wrong in this country, and there is. The bottom line is that they’re upset.”

Riots have gripped various countries in European cities, including Athens and London, fueled by young people infuriated by high unemployment and austerity measures, which in some cases has led to looting. High unemployment among youth is also one of the driving forces behind the Arab Spring, as impoverished protestors in North Africa and the Middle East rose up against their heavy-handed governments.

“The damage to a generation that can’t find jobs will go on for many, many years,” said Bloomberg.

The mayor, an independent, criticized the partisan politics that have stymied progress in Congress, and the inability of Republicans and Democrats to compromise on ways to fix the economy.

“There is no overnight solution,”
he said.”You look at the president’s proposals. At least he’s got some ideas on the table, whether you like those or not.”

“The only way you solve this problems is that everybody pays a little more and everybody gets a little less,” he added.

The economy added no jobs in August, according to the Labor Department, for the first time since February, 1945.

The unemployment rate is 9.1%, but many experts say that figure is misleading. They prefer to use the so-called underemployment rate, which includes people who have given up their search for jobs as well as people who want to work full-time but are forced to work part-time.

The underemployment rate is 16.2%.

SOURCE

Million Dead, $1.8 Trillion Spent: The Cost Of The Decade-Long U.S. “War On Terror”

Million Dead, $1.8 Trillion Spent On Decade-Long U.S. “War On Terror”

by Tom Clonan

Global Research

US pays price in blood and treasure for war on terror

By Tom Clonan

-In January 2002, the US began the lesser publicised Operation Enduring Freedom – Philippines…In October 2002, the US military started African military operations from Djibouti, establishing Operation Enduring Freedom – Horn of Africa…within Ethiopia, Somalia, Chad and Niger….This operation was subsequently broadened to include Operation Enduring Freedom – Trans Sahara, widening the scope of its operations to Central Africa and sub-Saharan Africa. This little-known war on terror in Africa has been fought in the main by thousands of US special forces and has been overshadowed by US military operations in Afghanistan, Iraq and Pakistan…[T]he US continues to wage its war on terror on several continents – from the Horn of Africa and Yemen to Iraq, Afghanistan and Pakistan.

In the decade since 9/11 about a million people worldwide have lost their lives in what is now known as the global war on terror.

The term “War on Terror”, was first used by President George Bush on September 16th, 2001, at Camp David as the US began to configure its military response to Osama bin Laden’s attacks on New York and the Pentagon.

In the weeks and months following 9/11, the Bush administration launched a series of robust military and intelligence interventions worldwide. The first phase started with the invasion of Afghanistan, or Operation Enduring Freedom, which began in October 2001.

The war aims were simple – to remove the Taliban leadership in Kabul and deny al-Qaeda physical sanctuary within the country. The US aimed to destroy al-Qaeda and disrupt its capacity to mount international operations from Afghan soil. It also sought to capture or kill bin Laden.

In January 2002, the US began the lesser publicised Operation Enduring Freedom – Philippines, to destroy the Islamist terror groups Jemaah Islamiyah and the Abu Sayaf group who had been co-ordinating terrorist operations throughout the Philippines and Indonesia from the island of Besilan…

In October 2002, the US military started African military operations from Djibouti, establishing Operation Enduring Freedom – Horn of Africa, designed to identify and destroy al-Qaeda affiliated Islamist terror cells within Ethiopia, Somalia, Chad and Niger.

This operation was subsequently broadened to include Operation Enduring Freedom – Trans Sahara, widening the scope of its operations to Central Africa and sub-Saharan Africa. This little-known war on terror in Africa has been fought in the main by thousands of US special forces and has been overshadowed by US military operations in Afghanistan, Iraq and Pakistan.

In March 2003, the US invaded Iraq in Operation Iraqi Freedom. The war aims of the US in Iraq were less clear than in its other interventions. Faulty and false intelligence reports on so-called weapons of mass destruction were mobilised as a motivation to attack Iraq.

The initial invasion phase, involving approximately 200,000 coalition troops, managed to topple Saddam Hussein’s regime. Saddam was subsequently captured, tried and hanged in Iraq. But no weapons of mass destruction were discovered and the invasion had the unintended consequence of strengthening Iran’s influence in the region.

A decade after the Twin Towers attacks, the US continues to wage its war on terror on several continents – from the Horn of Africa and Yemen to Iraq, Afghanistan and Pakistan. The term “war on terror” has entered the language as a catch-all phrase for everything from the inconvenience of security checks at airports to drone attacks in Pakistan. Officially, however, the global war on terror is now over. The Obama administration has rebranded and renamed the Global War on Terror, the Overseas Contingency Operation.

Since March 2009, the Pentagon and US Department of Defense have been requested to refrain from using the term, Global War on Terror.

In terms of blood and treasure, the wars have been costly for the US and Nato. In Iraq, the US and its allies lost almost 5,000 troops. More than 32,000 were wounded. In Afghanistan, where casualty rates have increased five-fold in five years, the US and its allies have lost almost 3,000 killed in action with a further 13,000 wounded.

More than 10,000 US and foreign mercenaries – euphemistically termed security contractors – have also been killed and injured in Iraq and Afghanistan.

The strain of a decade of war on America’s volunteer army has been heavy. According to the US Army Surgeon General 66,935 US troops suffer from acute combat stress reaction. In addition, the US Congressional Research Service has reported that a staggering 178,876 US veterans have suffered traumatic brain injuries. Almost 2,000 of these veterans are amputees and hundreds have also died of self-inflicted wounds or suicide while on active service in Iraq and Afghanistan.

The rate of suicide among US troops has more than doubled since 9/11. For civilians, the cost of war has been especially high. While estimates vary, British medical journal The Lancet suggests that a minimum of 655,000 Iraqi civilians were killed during Operation Iraqi Freedom.

Similar studies suggest that approximately 4,000 Afghan civilians have died during Operation Enduring Freedom. These figures represent those killed by both coalition troops and belligerent forces within Iraq and Afghanistan. The majority of civilian casualties, in both countries, were inflicted by insurgents.

The US Congressional Research Service, in its March 2011 report, states that the Overseas Contingency Operation has cost the US taxpayer $1.3 trillion – $130 billion per annum since 9/11. At present, US military operations worldwide cost $386 million per day, or $4,000 dollars per second. According to US Congressional estimates, the final bill will total $1.8 trillion.

Stop NATO e-mail list home page with archives and search engine:
http://groups.yahoo.com/group/stopnato/messages

Stop NATO website and articles:
http://rickrozoff.wordpress.com

SOURCE

The top 10 Chinese cyber attacks (that we know of)

The top 10 Chinese cyber attacks (that we know of)

Posted By Josh Rogin

With all about the chatter about China’s hacking of Google and Secretary of State Hillary Clinton’s drive to deliver “consequences” to bad actors in cyberspace, it’s worth noting that the problem of cyber attacks either promulgated or supported by the Chinese government is far from new.

In a previous life, your Cable guy broke a story that revealed senior military officials believe the Chinese government is supporting hackers that attack “anything and everything” in the U.S. national security infrastructure on a constant basis. And while it’s difficult to prove guilt, the scale, organization, and intent of the attacks leads experts and officials alike to one sponsor: the Chinese government.

The Defense Department has said that the Chinese government, in addition to employing thousands of its own hackers, manages massive teams of experts from academia and industry in “cyber militias” that act in Chinese national interests with unclear amounts of support and direction from China’s People’s Liberation Army (PLA).

According to SANS Institute research director Alan Paller, “The problem is 1,000 times worse than what we see.” But the tip of the iceberg is still large. Here are some of the most damaging attacks on the U.S. government that have been attributed to Chinese government sponsorship or endorsement over the past few years:

1) Titan Rain

In 2004, an analyst named Shawn Carpenter at Sandia National Laboratories traced the origins of a massive cyber espionage ring back to a team of government sponsored researchers in Guangdong Province in China. The hackers, code named by the FBI “Titan Rain,” stole massive amounts of information from military labs, NASA, the World Bank, and others. Rather than being rewarded, Carpenter was fired and investigated after revealing his findings to the FBI, because hacking foreign computers is illegal under U.S. law. He later sued and was awarded more than $3 million. The FBI renamed Titan Rain and classified the new name. The group is still assumed to be operating.

2) State Department’s East Asia Bureau

In July 2006, the State Department admitted it had become a victim of cyber hacking after an official in “East Asia” accidentally opened an email he shouldn’t have. The attackers worked their way around the system, breaking into computers at U.S. embassies all over the region and then eventually penetrating systems in Washington as well.

3) Offices of Rep. Frank Wolf

Wolf has been one of the most outspoken lawmakers on Chinese human rights issues, so it was of little surprise when he announced that in August 2006 that his office computers had been compromised and that he suspected the Chinese government. Wolf also reported that similar attacks had compromised the systems of several other congressmen and the office of the House Foreign Affairs Committee.

4) Commerce Department

The Commerce Department’s Bureau of Industry and Security had to throw away all of its computers in October 2006, paralyzing the bureau for more than a month due to targeted attacks originating from China. BIS is where export licenses for technology items to countries like China are issued.

5) Naval War College

In December 2006, the Naval War College in Rhode Island had to take all of its computer systems offline for weeks following a major cyber attack. One professor at the school told his students that the Chinese had brought down the system. The Naval War College is where much military strategy against China is developed.

6) Commerce Secretary Carlos Gutierrez and the 2003 blackout?

A National Journal article revealed that spying software meant to clandestinely steal personal data was found on the devices of then Commerce Secretary Carlos Gutierrez and several other officials following a trade mission to China in December 2007. That same article reported that intelligence officials traced the causes of the massive 2003 northeast blackout back to the PLA, but some analysts question the connection.

7) McCain and Obama presidential campaigns

That’s right, both the campaigns of then Senators Barack Obama and John McCain were completely invaded by cyber spies in August 2008. The Secret Service forced all campaign senior staff to replace their Blackberries and laptops. The hackers were looking for policy data as a way to predict the positions of the future winner. Senior campaign staffers have acknowledged that the Chinese government contacted one campaign and referred to information that could only have been gained from the theft.

8) Office of Sen. Bill Nelson, D-FL

At a March 2009 hearing, Nelson revealed that his office computers had been hacked three separate times and his aide confirmed that the attacks had been traced back to China. The targets of the attacks were Nelson’s foreign-policy aide, his legislative director, and a former NASA advisor.

9) Ghostnet

In March, 2009, researchers inToronto concluded a 10-month investigation that revealed a massive cyber espionage ring they called Ghostnet that had penetrated more than 1,200 systems in 103 countries. The victims were foreign embassies, NGOs, news media institutions, foreign affairs ministries, and international organizations. Almost all Tibet-related organizations had been compromised, including the offices of the Dalai Lama. The attacks used Chinese malware and came from Beijing.

10) Lockheed Martin’s F-35 program

In April, 2009, the Wall Street Journal reported that China was suspected of being behind a major theft of data from Lockheed Martin’s F-35 fighter program, the most advanced airplane ever designed. Multiple infiltrations of the F-35 program apparently went on for years.

SOURCE

14 Conspiracy Theories That The Media Now Admits Are Conspiracy Facts

14 Conspiracy Theories That The Media Now Admits Are Conspiracy Facts

By Michael Snyder – BLN Contributing Writer

How many times have you heard the mainstream media dismiss certain points of view as “conspiracy theories”? It seems as though one of the easiest ways to brush something off is to label it as something that only “conspiracy theorists” would believe. Well, you know what? A whole lot of the time the “conspiracy theorists” are right and the mainstream media is wrong. In fact, we owe a great debt to “conspiracy theorists” because they will go places and investigate things that the mainstream media would never even touch. The reality is that the mainstream media only tells us what the government and the big corporations want us to hear, and much of the time it is those in the alternative media that are left with the task of trying to figure out what the real truth is. So don’t look down on conspiracy theories or conspiracy theorists. In a world where almost everything we are told is a lie, the truth can be very difficult to find.

The following are 14 conspiracy theories that the media now admits are conspiracy facts….

#1 Fukushima uninhabitable

Back in April, I published an article entitled “Much Of Northern Japan Uninhabitable Due To Nuclear Radiation?” At the time, almost everyone in the mainstream media was insisting that Fukushima was nothing like Chernobyl and that those that lived near Fukushima would be able to return to their homes fairly soon.

From Hiroshima to Fukushima: Finishing the Job.

Well, it turns out that those of us that feared the worst were right after all. Just consider the following quote from the New York Times….

Broad areas around the stricken Fukushima Daiichi nuclear plant could soon be declared uninhabitable, perhaps for decades, after a government survey found radioactive contamination that far exceeded safe levels, several major media outlets said Monday.

Proof Hitler is STILL alive.........and likes pretzels.


#2 U.S. Military Attack on Libya

At the beginning of this year, nobody would have dreamed that the U.S. military would have attacked Libya this year.

But it happened. At first those that tried to warn about an upcoming conflict with Libya were called kooks, and even up until recently many in the media were still trying to deny that NATO was arming and training the rebels.

Well, the truth is that NATO had special forceson the ground even before the conflict began.

The “rebel groups” (which include large numbers of al-Qaeda fighters) would have been soundly defeated by Gaddafi if not for relentless air strikes by the U.S. military and NATO.

Instead of a straightforward invasion like we saw in Afghanistan and Iraq, the U.S. military and NATO systematically developed, trained and equipped “rebel groups” within the country and have used them as the ground forces for this campaign.

That way the goals of the U.S. and EU could still be achieved, but in the end they would have less blood on their hands.

As the conflict winds down, now even the New York Times is admitting that we have trained and equipped the rebels….

“We always knew there would be a point where the effectiveness of the government forces would decline to the point where they could not effectively command and control their forces,
” said the diplomat, who was granted anonymity to discuss confidential details of the battle inside Tripoli.

“At the same time,”
the diplomat said, “the learning curve for the rebels, with training and equipping, was increasing. What we’ve seen in the past two or three weeks is these two curves have crossed.”

Sadly, there is still a very good chance that U.S. troops could end up on the ground in Libya.
Many prominent officials are already calling for the U.S. and the EU to provide occupation forces. Richard Haas, the president of the Council on Foreign Relations, has authored an opinion piece for the Financial Times entitled “Libya Now Needs Boots on the Ground”.

From Wounded Knee to Libya: A History of US Military Interventionism.

If that happens, it will likely end up being a situation very similar to what we have today in Iraq.

#3 Widespread Use Of RFID chips in Humans

The doubters said it would never happen. They said we would never see the day when RFID chips were implanted in humans on a widespread basis..

Well, today there are examples of this all over the world. One of the most stunning examples recently has come out of Mexico. According to the Washington Post, “thousands of worried Mexicans” have been having “satellite and radio-frequency tracking products” implanted in their skin in order to protect themselves against abduction.

Truman reviewing prosthetic genitals to create the "Super Fly Soldier"


#4 $2000 Gold

It was only a matter of months ago that we were told that gold was “in a bubble” at $1400 or $1500 an ounce.

Gold, Silver, Food – 3 ways to survive the coming economic collapse.

Well, gold recently crossed the $1900 an ounce barrier, and appears poised to go much higher as global financial instability intensifies. In Fiscal trouble, States are reaffirming the 10th Amendment and moving towards a Gold Standard. A Crisis is not being helped by Venezuelas’ recent actions to repatriate their Gold reserves.

#5 Obama Wants To Impose Backdoor Amnesty

Those that warned that Barack Obama was going to impose amnesty for illegal immigrants by executive fiat were called “nuts” and “conspiracy theorists”.

Well, it has happened. The Obama administration has now instituted “backdoor amnesty” for illegal immigrants and even plans to provide them with work permits. Few realize the high cost of illegal immigration.

#6 U.S. Government provide weapons to the mexican drug cartel

For a long time there were those that claimed that the U.S. government was providing guns to Mexican drug cartels, but nobody wanted to listen.

Well, it is all now a matter of public record. It turns out that the U.S. government facilitated the transfer of thousands of guns into the hands of Mexican drug cartels.

The following is a brief excerpt from a CBS News report that discusses the fierce opposition that many ATF agents expressed to allowing thousands of guns to be given into the hands of the Mexican drug cartels….

On the phone, one Project Gunrunner source (who didn’t want to be identified) told us just how many guns flooded the black market under ATF’s watchful eye. “The numbers are over 2,500 on that case by the way. That’s how many guns were sold – including some 50-calibers they let walk.”

50-caliber weapons are fearsome. For months, ATF agents followed 50-caliber Barrett rifles and other guns believed headed for the Mexican border, but were ordered to let them go. One distraught agent was often overheard on ATF radios begging and pleading to be allowed to intercept transports. The answer: “Negative. Stand down.”

CBS News has been told at least 11 ATF agents and senior managers voiced fierce opposition to the strategy. “It got ugly…” said one. There was “screaming and yelling” says another. A third warned: “this is crazy, somebody is gonna to get killed.”

Amazingly, three of the key ATF officials involved in putting thousands of guns into the hands of Mexican drug cartels were recently promoted.

#7 Fluoride is harmful

Incredibly, the federal government is finally admitting that high levels of fluoride in our drinking water can be harmful. In fact, the feds have reduced the “recommended amount” of fluoride in our drinking water for the first time in 50 years.

We probably won’t see them ban fluoride any time soon, but for them to even acknowledge a problem with fluoride is a major step. In a recent article on CNN, it was reported that the federal government is now saying that high levels of fluoride in the water have now officially been linked with fluorosis….check out FLUORIDE, TEETH, and the ATOMIC BOMB.

The Department of Health and Human Services and Environmental Protection Agency are proposing the change because of an increase in fluorosis — a condition that causes spotting and streaking on children’s teeth.

#8 The Federal ReserveFavors The Big Banks

We were always told by the media that the Federal Reserve was “above politics” and that it did not show favoritism.

Well, we all know now that the Fed is deeply corrupt and about the only people that they actually help are their friends. Here are 19 Reasons Why The Federal Reserve Is At The Heart Of Our Economic Problems. When you think about it. Just How Is The Central Economic Planning That The Federal Reserve Does Different From The Central Economic Planning That Communist China Does?

It turns out that the Federal Reserve very quietly showered the big banks and their friends with hundreds of billions of dollars in loans at rates that were substantially below market during the financial crisis. While Wall Street was being flooded with easy loans, none of the small banks that were deeply suffering and no average Americans got any money.

#9 Cell Phones linked to cancer

For years, “conspiracy theorists” have been claiming that cell phone use can cause cancer.

Well, the mainstream media is starting to catch up. Some very startling scientific studies have come out recently that are hard to ignore.

The following is an excerpt from a recent CNN article about one of these studies….

At the highest exposure levels — using a mobile phone half an hour a day over a 10-year period — the study found a 40 percent increased risk of glioma brain tumors.

Here you can review a list of the 10 highest and 10 lowest radiation emitting cell phone models.

#10 The Credit Rating Agencies Are Corrupt

We have all been taught that the credit rating agencies are supposed to be objective.

But in the real world things are not that simple.

For example, just a short time after long-term U.S. government debt was downgraded, the head of Standard & Poor’s is resigning, and is being replaced by Douglas Peterson, the former COO of Citigroup.

Do you think the former COO of Citigroup is going to come down hard on his former comrades over at the big Wall Street banks?

Also, a whistleblower has come forward with some stunning revelations about Moody’s. The following is what former analyst William Harrington says was going on over at that credit agency during the financial crisis….

“The track record of management influence in committees speaks for itself — it produced hollowed-out (collateralized debt obligation) opinions that were at great odds with the private opinions of committees and which were not durable for even a short period after publication”

#11 Prescription Drugs Kill A Lot Of Americans

Growing up, I never even imagined that prescription drugs could be dangerous. I had complete faith in the medical community and the government to only allow drugs on the market that were fully tested and proven to be 100% safe.

Well, I was dead wrong. The truth is that adverse reactions to prescription drugs kill a huge number of Americans every year. A recent Vanity Fair article entitled “Deadly Medicine” began with the following statement….

Prescription drugs kill some 200,000 Americans every year. Will that number go up, now that most clinical trials are conducted overseas–on sick Russians, homeless Poles, and slum-dwelling Chinese–in places where regulation is virtually nonexistent, the F.D.A. doesn’t reach, and “mistakes” can end up in pauper’s graves?

Apparently our nations futile War on Drugs only applies to drugs that do not directly line the pockets of politicians.

#12 Bisphenol-A Is Linked To Infertility

A very common chemical known as bisphenol-A is found in thousands upon thousands of our plastic products. It also turns out that it has some really nasty effects on the human body.

Fortunately, some in the mainstream media are beginning to acknowledge this. Back in October, one of the largest UK newspapers published an article entitled “Bisphenol-A now linked to male infertility” which made the following unequivocal statement about the dangers of BPA….

Bisphenol-A (BPA), known as the “gender bending” chemical because of its connection to male impotence, has now been shown to decrease sperm mobility and quality.

Take a moment to check out this article on 6……..did you really want 7? Examples of Food Terrorism!

#13 The “Super Congress” Is In The Pocket Of Wall Street Interests

The amount of money that has been donated to the campaigns of those on the “Super Congress” is absolutely astounding.

Just check out what a recent CNBC article had to say about the matter….

Overall, according to the center’s research, the dozen super committee members have raised more than $50 million from the finance, insurance and real estate sector since the 1990 election cycle.

How much influence do you think 50 million dollars is going to buy?

#14 The Targeting Of Christian Groups

We are increasingly hearing from the Obama administration and some members of Congress that we need to be really concerned about “homegrown terrorists” and “Christian extremists“.

For example, during a recent Congressional hearing U.S. Representative Sheila Jackson Lee warned that “Christian militants” might try to “bring down the country” and that such groups need to be investigated.

You can find out everything you need to know by reading the Government’s own report. The Project Megiddo Report

In addition, according to a shocking document obtained by Oath Keepers, the FBI is now instructing store owners to report many new forms of “suspicious activity” to them. According to the document, “suspicious activity” now includes making “extreme religious statements” and believing in “radical theology”.

Not only that, a Department of Homeland Security report on “right wing extremism” from April 2009 lists the following people as potential terrorists….

-those that believe in “end times” prophecies

-those that believe abortion is wrong

-those that stockpile food, ammunition or weapons

-those that are against same-sex marriage

-those that believe in “New World Order” conspiracy theories

I don’t know about you, but when the federal government starts targeting people based on their religious beliefs, that makes me very nervous.

This world is officially going crazy. So don’t blame “conspiracy theorists” for wanting to dig around and get the facts. The mainstream media sure doesn’t give us much of the truth.

If you want to learn more about American Conspiracies we have plenty of information to browse.

As the world continues to fall apart and as the propaganda from the mainstream media gets even more blatant, the hunger for the truth is only going to grow.

Who knows? Perhaps before it is all over you will be a “conspiracy theorist” too.

SOURCE

Renewed Racial Violence Leads To More Questions Than Answers

America’s Racial Inequalities Spark Renewed Violence In U.S. Cities

Walter Russell Mead, The American Interest

For some time now, residents of some US cities have noted occasional incidents of seemingly random, racially motivated violence in which young Black males are involved.

The hot weather and bad economy seem to be combining to generate a small but possibly significant uptick this year.

The national media are doing their best to avoid looking too closely at this disturbing phenomenon, and perhaps for good reason.

What the United States doesn’t need is a media firestorm that triggers copycat violence.

Nevertheless, some attention should be paid. Journalist Eugene Kane has the bare bones in the Milwaukee Journal Sentinel:

“While out of town last week, I suddenly started receiving urgent long-distance messages about young black people in Milwaukee acting crazy.

Again.

Last time it happened, I was on vacation during the Fourth of July weekend when a bunch of misbehaving young black people ransacked a gas station convenience store and attacked residents in a park.

This time, I was in my hometown of Philadelphia attending the National Association of Black Journalists convention when my BlackBerry started blowing up with news about what happened Thursday night at the Wisconsin State Fair.

According to reports, it was similar to what happened in Riverwest last month, but on a much more brutal—and scarier—scale.

When people start reporting they were being beaten by black people for no other reason than being white people at the State Fair, that’s pretty disturbing.

Here is a news account of the violence. As Kane points out, Milwaukee isn’t the only city to have seen problems like this.

“For most of the summer, Philadelphia cops have dealt with a series of so-called flash mobs that turned violent, scores of young blacks roaming the center city area and attacking mostly white pedestrians and shoppers.

It’s so bad, Mayor Michael Nutter and Police Commissioner Charles Ramsey recently announced a coordinated response to the problem, which involves law enforcement measures, social responses and neighborhood outreach. They’re relying on a network of African-American professionals, community leaders and officials in the city to step up to the plate.

On Friday, Nutter said he would increase police street patrols and enforce curfews for young people. The city’s curfew ordinance says children under the age of 13 must be home by 10 p.m., and young people between the ages of 13 and 18 must be home by midnight.”

Yale sociologist Elijah has described Philadelphia flash mobs for the Philadelphia Inquirer like this:

“Flash mobs have reappeared on the streets of Center City. These groups of mostly black youths gravitate to a designated location at an appointed time. Once there, they become a mob that gathers force as it roams the streets, wreaking havoc on businesses while terrifying and sometimes attacking pedestrians.”

Dick Simpson of the Chicago Journal describes the situation in his city:

“These well-known social conditions breed anger and lawlessness. And so we now have black “flash mobs” attacking whites in the Loop, on public beaches along the North Side, as well as throughout the River North and Lakeview neighborhoods. The term “flash mob” originated when college-aged kids would converge on a spot like Grand Central Station in New York and do seemingly-impromptu performance art. But now, the term is being applied to violent groups.

For several years, roving groups of black teenagers have attacked folks on the South and West sides of Chicago as far out as Oak Park. These young folks in gangs and flash mobs are not afraid of the police. They attack and steal quickly—they are gone long before the police arrive. They just move on to another spot for their next attack. The beatings of victims can be brutal.”

In a piece on the Black underclass in Chicago for In These Times, Salim Muwakkil interviews a participant.

“Jamal Foster’s story is an example… Foster says he and his friends often travel to North Avenue and Oak Street Beach—two popular lakefront locations along the Gold Coast—to intimidate people and steal whatever they can. “We can get some good stuff down there,” the 17-year-old says. “You can’t get no iPods or nothing like that on the West Side. So we go to where you can and when we mob up, even the cops can’t stop us.”

Law enforcement’s impotence in halting such crimes—more than a dozen incidents in the first weeks of June alone—is the probable reason Chicago police took the unprecedented action of closing the densely crowded North Avenue Beach on Memorial Day. (The official reason given for the shutdown was to allow medical vehicles access to treat several heat-related injuries.)”

The Christian Science Monitor adds Washington and Las Vegas to the list of cities experiencing this phenomenon and discusses another pastime: “a game called “Knockout King,” played primarily by Black teenagers, where the point is to approach and quickly strike a stranger, often whites or immigrants, in an attempt to knock them unconscious with the first punch.”

Sounds like fun. A twist that is also gaining popularity is the “flash rob,” where a large group of young people descends on a store and loots it. As responsible journalists are always careful to say, the overall trend of youth crime in the US remains headed down, but this particular form of crime seems to be gaining steam.

There are many observations one can make—both about the phenomenon itself and about the gingerly way the press wants to handle it.

As to the phenomenon, it points to an important trend I’ve been reviewing in a series of posts on the state of Black America. What was once a cohesive community is fragmenting in several directions. Immigrants from Africa and from the African diaspora in Central America and the Caribbean are changing the definition of what it means to be an African American, and neither the interests nor the experiences of the new immigrants always fit comfortably into African American culture and ideology.

Beyond that, the three main groups of native-born African Americans are growing apart. There is an increasingly well-connected and successful African American elite who negotiate the upper reaches of American society on reasonably satisfactory terms, and life for them just keeps getting better. Oprah, President Obama, and a host of others are doing just fine.

Then comes a middle to lower middle class. They are not rich but in many cases they have college educations and are increasingly found in the suburbs. This group faces serious economic stress; the Great Recession, the housing bust and the implosion of public sector employment are eating away at the black middle class.

Finally there is the urban underclass; in many respects it is significantly worse off than in the 1970s. Social conditions in the inner city (as assessed by measures like public health, the percentage of illegitimate births and the percentage of pregnancies that end in abortion, achievement on standardized tests, high school and college graduation rates, unemployment, HIV prevalence, drug usage and the incarceration rate) are appalling, and many indicators are worse than they were a generation ago.

The lines of communication between the black poor and the black elite have largely broken down. (A similar process has taken place among whites.) President Obama has had little to say in the White House about the desperately deteriorating situation of Black America—much less about the disproportionate effect cuts in government spending will have on African Americans looking to government to provide jobs or to deliver services.

The personal and individual triumphs of highly visible African American public officials and business and intellectual leaders does not resonate with young people who see no road from where they are to where Oprah Winfrey or Colin Powell stand.

The same thing is true at a local level. As more successful families have moved out of the inner cities and into the suburbs, the ability of the national and local “Black Establishment” to intervene in moments of tension is dropping. Many inner city kids today grow up feeling abandoned by Black leaders as well as by whites.

Should flash mobs or other disturbing phenomena catch on more widely (and the combination of social media and idle youth can lead to very rapid shifts in behavior), it is not clear that either local or national leaders could do much to calm things down.

Given the toll the Great Recession has taken on what were already poor job and life prospects for inner city youth, and given the divide that increasingly leaves poor and marginal Black youth feeling abandoned by Black as well as white leaders, there is reason for concern about the potential for disturbing and violent developments.

Add to this the prevalence of weapons in some circles, the organizational base that gangs provide and the ubiquity of social media, it is not unlikely that future violence in the cities would look more like flash mobs and less like the urban riots of the 1960s. Those riots targeted Black neighborhoods, black owned stores and much of the property destroyed in the riots belonged to Blacks; any new trouble would likely be more effective at spreading the pain beyond the inner city. Link ups in some cases with religious radicals or foreign interests who seek to do us harm cannot be excluded.

The 2005 riots in France and the more recent riot in London tell us that youth and unemployment can be a bad mix; violent flash mobs should remind us that the same thing can happen here and in the age of social media, violent crowds can appear where and when law enforcement can’t cope.

Traditional liberals come in at this point to argue for spending more money on the traditional social intervention programs in the inner city. This is unlikely to happen; there is not much evidence that these programs accomplish very much—and there isn’t any money. Even taxing “millionaires and billionaires” to the eyeballs won’t manage out of control entitlements—much less inaugurate yet another “Marshall Plan for the cities.

The United States badly needs a workable and affordable post-Great Society approach to the inner cities. Unfortunately, we don’t have this yet and it is quite possible that we will face some testing times as a result.

But there is another trend that bears watching. There are a great many angry and frustrated people in this country who have lost faith in their national leaders and they aren’t black. They are, in fact, white.

[Readers frequently write to ask why I capitalize “Black” but not “white”. Often the question comes with racial resentment attached: there is a feeling that the use of the capital letter reveals some sneaky political agenda. The reason is not some kind of bending-over-backwards PC leftie orthodoxy; it is because I think the terms refer to two different kinds of groups. African Americans are an American ethnic group like Irish Americans, Mexican Americans, German Americans or Jewish Americans. We normally capitalize the name of such ethnic groups: Tibetans, Kurds, Jews, Gypsies. White in America is not one ethnic group; it is a larger, less defined group who do not share the kind of strong common identity that smaller groups do. White is an attribute but it is not an identity. I don’t capitalize black when referring to black Africans or Jamaicans; using the capital letter is a way to specify American Blacks, not blacks at large. It’s eccentric, maybe, but it seems logical.]

Here’s the problem. In the long run, racial tensions in America seem to be gradually subsiding. Compared to 1960, 1920, 1890 or any other date in American history, race relations today are just peachy. It is my hope and belief that when the bicentennial of the Civil War rolls around in 2061, the United States will be substantially closer to our national goal of a truly post racial society.

Nevertheless, in the short to medium term there is the potential for trouble. Whites as well as Blacks have lost faith in the government and the intellectual and cultural elites. Some whites resent what they see as excessive privilege for Blacks reflected in affirmative action. Many believe that the federal government and the (largely white) upper middle class establishment wants to marginalize the traditional white majority in the US through a combination of deliberate immigration policy aimed at reducing white preponderance in the population and by favoring immigrants and non-whites for education and employment.

For people who feel this way, the reluctance of the mainstream media to cover racial flash mobs is sinister and disturbing. If there were no racial dimension to these mobs they would surely receive much greater publicity and there would be much stroking of chins and learned talk about what the phenomenon meant. Even if there weren’t many examples, our naturally sensationalist media would hype the story to make it big. Youth, violence, Facebook and YouTube: this is an explosive combination and it is exactly the kind of story circulation chasing news outlets would feature.

Given America’s history and the lurid attraction race still holds for the public mind, the racial dimension of (many but not all of) these incidents makes this an even more compelling story. Certainly if random mobs of white kids were attacking peaceful Blacks going about their daily business the media and the commentariat would be deeply engaged.

The articles I’ve linked to have been carefully couched and worded in ways that downplay the drama and the human interest. It is understandable and even meritorious that this is so; as I suggested at the beginning of this post, no sane person would want to increase the chance that what is still a marginal and occasional pattern of behavior would go viral and enter the mainstream—and to vary the metaphor still further, mainstream media attention is like oxygen for this kind of potential firestorm.

But to a significant number of Americans out there, this restraint looks like just another case of an anti-white elitist media bending over backward to hide the real truth from the American people. Should this phenomenon grow and should the media continue to downplay both the extent and the racial nature of the violence, look for a deep and angry response. Many American whites are young, angry, poorly educated and male. So are many Spanish speaking immigrants. These guys also know how to organize a mob on Facebook.
The Crisis of the Great Society

National politics has not really faced this directly, but the underlying issue in our politics today is not so much the future of the New Deal as it is of the Great Society. Entitlements, immigration policy and the mix of race policies emerging from that decade were long considered untouchable in American politics. That is no longer the case, and increasingly the building blocks of the post 1960s American social order are on the table.

The unaffordable nature of the entitlement structure that has emerged from the Great Society and been much added to (and don’t forget the GOP role in the prescription drug benefit) is at the bottom of the bitter budget battles we’ve seen.

Our current immigration policy is a prescription for social change of vast proportions. Since the 1960s, the US has tried an unprecedented and little discussed experiment in social engineering. In stages over the last fifty years we have combined three bold policies.

First, a race-blind immigration policy with a visa lottery as a kind of affirmative action—so to speak—for people from countries that historically had not sent many immigrants to the US has dramatically changed the mix of people coming to the US as immigrants and over time will shift the ethnic and cultural composition of the population.

Second, the “immigration holiday” under the tight quota system from 1923 (when public concern over unrestricted immigration led to a sharp decrease) through the 1960s was ended, and the number of legal immigrants increased. Today the US has levels of legal immigration not seen since the World War One era.

Third, for many years immigration laws have been laxly or irregularly enforced leading to the presence of something like 11 million illegal workers and residents in the country.

My guess is that in a national referendum, all three of these policies would be heavily defeated; but despite its unpopularity, Great Society immigration policy is possibly the single most important social policy the country now has. One consequence of the collapse of public faith in the Establishment will be that attacks on immigration policy will be more frequent and more effective.

Race policy is less unpopular than our immigration policy, but it is likely that public opposition to affirmative action and other forms of racial preference will also grow. There are several forces at work; to dismiss them all as simple racism is to miss the complexity and the strength of forces that, like them or not, are likely to have growing salience moving forward.

The races are very far apart today; many whites believe that by electing a Black president the country has demonstrated its commitment to post racial politics and they expect Blacks to stop complaining about the past and start thriving in the glorious, racism-free paradise of America today. Many whites look at this Black success, and they think it is time to take down the affirmative action scaffolding that assisted the Black rise. Why, they ask, should the children of presidents and cabinet officers—to say nothing of celebrity offspring—benefit from racial preference in hiring and admissions?

For Blacks, especially those who haven’t made it into the elite, unemployment and the staggering losses in Black wealth during the Great Recession are far more consequential than the success of the Black upper crust. Much of White America thinks it has done all anyone could reasonably expect by opening the White House doors to a Black politician; much of Black America thinks little has changed. Many whites think Blacks have effectively used politics to win themselves jobs and preferences; many Blacks think that Black poverty in the age of Obama reveals how pitiful the results of political action really are.

Meanwhile, other factors contribute to the growing disenchantment with the racial dimension of Great Society policy. Growing public perception that sixties liberalism doesn’t work undermines the consensus for sixties racial as well as immigration and economic policy. If, as seems likely, popular middle class entitlements must face cutbacks, benefits for the poor will suffer more.

Bad economic times not only make people less generous and more defensive when thinking about social policy; they undermine public confidence in the wisdom and/or trustworthiness of elites. A national political establishment forced to face the unsustainable nature of the fiscal path it has long followed is an emperor without clothes. Elite commitment to affirmative action and the rest of sixties race policy remains strong— but elites of all races are going to have less and less ability to control the direction of American social policy.

The conditions for a Category 5 hurricane are all there; it is easy to see a political reaction taking shape in this country that would make the Tea Party movement look like a PTA bake sale. They say that great storms start with trivial causes: A butterfly waves its wings and, when conditions are just right, the wind begins to grow.

The country is so angry now that it would not take much more than the right butterfly in the right place to take us to the next stage of struggle over the Great Society legacy. Just as the urban riots of the 1960s played a role in the hasty adoption of the sixties policy complex, so a rash of small urban confrontations that caught on à la française could dramatically accelerate and intensify the current upheaval in American politics.

If that happens, the result is very unlikely to be a strengthening of the foundations of the Great Society state.

This post originally appeared at The American Interest.

Read more: SOURCE

11 Occult Secrets Now In the Open

11 Occult Secrets Now In the Open

by Zen Gardner

Power is derived in many ways. One of them is through ignorance. Deprive people of enough empowering truths while giving the illusion of an essential central control system and you’ll have the masses in your back pocket.

But we’re on to them, and the Word is spreading fast. And Truth is powerful in many dimensions, many beyond the reach of would-be controllers. That’s empowering.


The Playing Field

Earth is apparently a proving ground. It’s not static for any level of existence, never mind the human experience. We seem to be set here to make choices, learn lessons and come to realizations that appear to have a collective impact on existence.

Interpreting the world around us, each other, our roots, how to deal with the present, and sculpting our future seems to be our pastime. It’s a world of puzzles needing solutions, needs to be met, hungers to be filled, answers to be gotten.

Or is it.

Perhaps that is an illusory interpretation based on immediate needs and concerns, when universal solutions are attainable by an infinite consciousness available within our species that would get us off the merry-go-round of constant, nagging distractions and transcend our very concept of reality.

Could it be that simple? They don’t call me Zen for nothin’….;

Know The Truth, Know the Usurpers

Like they say at a ball game, “You can’t tell the players without a program”. Just so, you won’t know what’s really happening in the world we live in without knowing the occult (hidden) agenda and its controlling minions.

We don’t have to know every detail, but when you have enough dots or pixels identified and in place the picture starts to take a very clear shape. But to be honest, that usually only happens after an individual comes to a “rude awakening” of sorts when they find out the world as they have been told is virtually a complete lie. Then they start connecting. But it eventually happens.

This to me has been the most profound contribution of what’s become known as the alternative community. The mainstream line in almost every case is manipulated, deliberate disinformation to keep the illusory smokescreen appearing real while the bandits make away with the booty. We’re here to expose, dispel and replace that with loving Truth.

The Research Community

Researchers of hidden truths are an unlikely lot. The prolific works of Charles Fort and Manly P. Hall and others have paved an amazing path for later researchers and modern prophets to follow. From the likes of pioneer Jordan Maxwell and then William Cooper, David Icke, Jim Marrs, and bold souls like Henry Makow, Alan Watt and Michael Tsarion. And there’s younger guns who’ve done amazing work like Wes Penre, Ken Adachi, Vigilant Citizen, Freeman and a host of others, sincere driven truth excavators are chipping away at the illusion and revealing the esoteric.

Powerhouse information disseminaters like Jeff Rense, Mike Rivero and whistleblower sites like Project Camelot and so many others have tirelessly worked for years getting an honest and truthful perspective out, as have up and coming youthful, passionate sites like activistpost and intelhub and many, many others.

There’s too many to name but I’d like to express my heartfelt thanks and admiration to all the sincere searchers and information sharers who have empowered so many and had such a profound effect on millions of individuals and therefore society. My life has been eternally changed, as have many others. I hope to pass the favor on, if in no other way than to get people thinking and digging and to continue “just wondering” at the wonder of it all.

What’s Really “Alternative”?

It’s always struck me as odd that natural health and wellness treatments and techniques that have been practiced for centuries are now called “alternative” therapies, while very recently developed synthetic medicine, drug dependence and invasive surgical approaches are considered the norm.

This shifting, relativistic and continually revised “standard” applies to every sphere of society.

It’s like Fukushima!.

-How do you make the world safe from drastic rises in global radiation? Raise the acceptable radition levels….easy.

-Does history have some revealing, uncomfortable truths that current and later generations may use to expose autocratic, non-benevolent leadership tendencies? Change it. The history, that is. Move or remove the goalposts.

-Are science and spirituality converging and revealing the amazing power of the human spirit and the redundancy and irrelevance of hierarchical authority? Compartmentalize and quell it…for as long as you can. Certainly you can’t run an effective “hive” if the bees think they don’t need a queen and master drones.

This is their M.O. And the seeming total fascist takeover of the earth sometimes seems inevitable.

But fear not. This is a phase the ancients and seers knew was coming. We will soon experience a “reset” the likes of which our planet has only seen on much smaller scales. (Apparently this may all be cyclical and all part of the process, so you can rest in that if you’d like.)

The Reality of Unshakeable Truth

The Word is out. It rolls like a spilled handful of living, runaway coins into every corner of existence. Thanks to the efforts of those compelled by the very living Truths they’ve discovered, the world has heard a crescendo of enlightening information that continues to reverberate at an increasing speed.

The List

So let’s take a look at some of these enlightening truths that are running full steam via well researched books, the internet, email lists, meet ups, conferences, and are a growing part of the daily lexicon of our evolving, better informed society.

Introduction – We Fight Together

Remember, these are NOT doctrines or required beliefs at all. None of these points have to make sense to you. In fact some of these may offend and affront your sensibilities or logic processes. That’s not the point. These are areas of research and awakening that are very real to many people and have validity for that reason. It’s up to each of us to keep learning, and to most of all work together toward a global awakening of the fundamental needs for access to truth and known facts, to freedom, to encouragement, to love, life and freedom from oppression.

#1. The Shift.

This term is bandied about somewhat flippantly at times, but that doesn’t bother me. The concept that humanity is undergoing a fundamental shift in perception, a paradigm shift, has become almost mainstream news. It’s mentioned in passing in mocking tones, but it’s referred to reverently and repeatedly on talk radio and on alternative sites repeatedly. Look for it. It’ll surprise you how far it’s traveled. And it’s profound.

The dimensional aspect of the shift is huge. Many esoteric groups and individuals believe we are entering a literal vibrational shift over this next period of time. Not necessarily at any one specific time, but over a period of time while the earth simultaneously passes through a phenomenon called the galactic alignment while also experiencing a bombardment from the photon belt and extreme solar activity and other prophetic fulfillments.

Things are definitely changing, that we know. A golden age is predicted by the more esoterically inclined, with vibrational changes altering our very being. Let’s just hope so. But at the least, don’t discount it.

As the song goes, “Something’s happening here, what it is ain’t exactly clear.

Any way you look at it, we’re in for changes.

#2. 2012 and Earth Changes

This accompanies the shift concept, as our planet is clearly going through major changes.

That this Mayan prophecy is so predominant in the news speaks volumes. We’re a race attuned to prophecy, to the stars, and to the planets. We know alignments mean something; we look for signs. It’s human, spiritual nature to do so.

2012 awareness is so prevalent it’s almost overwhelming. Ask anyone. Great hype, great story. So what’s real?

The possible arrival of Niburu in the likes of Elenin or a dwarf star is screaming across the internet. Edgar Cayce, Nostradamus, the Bible, the Mayans and Hopi: we cannot help but be aware of their influences. Even TV shows won’t let it go. The word is out there, even if some are trying to use it to manipulate, as is usually the case.


#3. The Illuminati and Our Occult-Based World

Who are these enigmatic “Illuminati? Doesn’t matter. We know something’s up.

Hard to believe the elite leadership of the world, from banking magnates to corporate controllers, are members of secret societies and practice occult rituals?

Is it?

Not if you’re informed and pay attention. I’m not just talking about the THE BILDERBERGERS, CFR, Trilateral Commission, Skull and Bones, Bohemian Club and the array of semi-public committees and think tanks you deliberately see in the news.

I mean the dark stuff, the Balmoral Castle-type child sacrifices by European royalty and visiting elites; the invocation of Luciferian agents via dark magick rituals; the secret child abuse rings surrounding religious figures, power brokers and corporo-political leadership.

Don’t believe it? Here’s my point. You’ve heard about it. And like the questions surrounding 9/11, it has you wondering.

That’s the message. And it’s out.



#4. Freemasonryand the Corporate Minions

The common themes and symbols throughout the quickly consolidating corporate grip over planet earth is staggering. The rising sun, the all-seeing eye of Horus, the assumed pyramid structure of society, repeated 6’s and 666 messages, overt sexual symbolism with the phallus and arched vagina, the winged disk, pentagrams and hexagrams galore, etc.

The theme is consistent. It’s a fraternity. A brotherhood. Dan Brown has even popularized it (while attempting to trivialize it). Not enough?

Freemasonry is intrinsically tied to the esoteric tendencies of those who seek to control the world we live in. It’s a bastardized version of ancient Babylonian and Egyptian mystery school teachings, peppered with intertwining self-serving financial and control doctrines that these creeps seem to fancy.

It’s a farce. But it’s real. For now. Learn about it so you can interpret their logos, symbolism, language and motives, but it’s a shallow version of an imposed reality we won’t have to endure much longer.

The good news? It’s been exposed. And they know it and aren’t happy. Tough, boys. Word’s out, thanks to brave researchers and reporters worldwide who aren’t afraid to tell the Truth.

#5. The Zionist Agenda

Here’s a hot one even the most noble of Truth pursuers are sometimes afraid to touch.

If you want to know where to look, go where they tell you NOT to go. Look for the biggest shout-downs, denials, accusations and piles of raging, flaming BS propaganda designed to scare anyone and everyone off.

There you will find several gems. Amongst them: 9/11 questions, the truth behind the international banking cartel, and holocaust deniers and anti-semitism.

Zionism is something that’s considered political and you’re more or less allowed to talk about it. And 9/11 is actually tame compared to the other issues just named.

However, that the Nazi “holocaust” was actually deliberately staged to set up the formation of Israel and a worldwide Zionist empire is so far beyond most people’s possibility of belief it’s almost psychotic in nature. For any group of people to be that evil, that manipulating, as to sacrifice millions of lives while financing both sides of wars in order to establish a personalized plan of world domination is beyond a natural human’s capability of understanding.

And this is how the plan advances. Well meaning, well intentioned humanity cannot conceive of such evil. Hence, the evil perpetrators’ success. All they have to do is lie, cover-up, justify and bully, and they get their way.

I have friends of the fundamental Christian persuasion who buck much of what I’ve come to know. My retort has been to point out how even the Bible talks about the wicked “kings of this world” and the “principalities and powers, the rulers of darkness of this world“, but it’s water off a duck’s back. Way too real and upstream.

For some reason it just won’t translate into reality for many. Even though I explain it’s not the Jews, it’s these overlords who are hiding behind, exploiting and sacrificing the Jews to this cause and using them for a front, it’s to no avail. Just too much to overcome I guess.

It’s amazing. In the pursuit of truth you’d think there would be more “open minded” people. But there haven’t been that many…until now. With the information available today and an apparent awakening being triggered, people have suddenly become much more willing to consider some pretty radical…in the mainstream point of view..ways of thought and whole new approaches to understanding reality.

As far as the Zionist parasites, the continued desolation of Palestine and the obvious ownership by Zionists of the US government erodes the collective consciousness daily. Word is out.

That’s what Truth does. It’s certainly nothing to fear.

#6. The Vatican Assassins

Another heavy. If you sincerely follow the history of the Jesuits and the Vatican council over the ages, it will reveal some disturbing information regarding the Jesuits, and those who’ve hid behind this phony benevolence shield for centuries.

While many have chosen this Jesuit aspect to be their “horse to ride”, it’s clearly but another spear of the invasion of our planet’s control system. See Eric Jon Phelps’ site for a full dose if you like: www.VaticanAssassins.org.

My advice: don’t get hung up on it–see it as another aspect and part of a multi-pronged attack on humanity by dark forces hiding behind accepted, reinforced religious fronts. Watch for similarities and common threads, such as hierarchical control, religious intimidation and condemnation.

Research it for yourself and see if it doesn’t inspire ‘questions”….

#7. Intervention Theory

This is another hot subject that continues to gain traction. According to Erich von Daniken, Zacharia Sitchen, Lloyd Pye, Michael Tellinger and many other researchers and authors, we are a derivative race, seeded by aliens.

At first blush this may sound weird. After all, the Bible gives a whole different fable. Yes, fable. Read it again. it’s obviously an allegory, although peppered with hidden truths, symbolism and astro-theology. Yet we’re told to hold it as fact…in this day and age? Yeah, like all of ’em.

Ancient Aliens on the History Channel has been amazing. Lately they’re not just covering intervention by aliens, but hollow earth, UFOs from the old west era, details on the genetic engineering of humans, questions about the origins of the moon and much more. The Truth is getting out, and it’s having an amazing effect, no matter who and why it’s getting out, I might add.

[Aside: I know part of the supposed agenda is to prepare us for a “coming alien invasion” with ancient discoveries of alien presence and the like, but let’s just play along, shall we? These tools think we’re morons…let’s surprise them!]

#8. The Religion Scam

The Zeitgeist videos had a lot to do with this wake up. Of course they’re based on the years of research of Jordan Maxwell they give no credit to, and then lead us into a techno-future I don’t much care for. But they do a great job of summarizing the assumptive and false precepts of the various oppressive world religions and the fabricated world money system. Very enticing and liberating from false precepts.

Religions have tremendous sway over the world populace. It’s a sad state of affairs. But the wake up is clearly in effect and slowly dissolving the borders, prejudices and hardened mind sets that have been laid by the world social engineers for centuries to keep us disempowered and in darkness.

The beauty of a religious wake up, a wake up from the religious paradigm, is the zeal with which an awakened soul responds! Beware controllers. One man with the Truth is the force of millions!

This of course is not to be confused with true spirituality. This can take many helpful forms and disciplines.

#9. The Mental Conditioning Machine

First, simple conditioning.

We know the media are programming us with propaganda continually. Much of this is predictive programming, so that when an expected future arrives, the populace shares a resigned sigh of relief, even if it’s bad news. This is creepy to the core. This includes a completely automated future if they have their way. While they try to make all this technocrap look cool, it’s not. It’s just plain cold and dehumanizing.

All of us are also bombarded with images of a future apocalypse, disasters, the social collapse and the transhuman future of Man. Even the daily news, including alternative sites, warn of the same and can smother our consciousness in pain and resignation.

So what? So you’ll accept it more readily. It will “make sense”. You won’t be alone. It will be “part of the program”. This goes for all the crass materialism and shallow behavior pumped into everyone’s skull.

Why? It’s conditioning. You won’t reject it, fight it, renounce it, see it as anathema and contrary to your beliefs. You’ll OWN it!

Worse yet is outright mind control.



#10. Now…Outright Mind Control

Google Fritz Springmeyer and other mind control research sites before they are shut down and save the information. You’ll need to look at this information several times, and the sites that courageously expound upon it.

It’s heart-rending and horrific, but I personally believe it to be a reality. Sick “scientists” have been producing mind-controlled subjects that are now wandering our planet in substantial numbers, many of them in plain sight just waiting to be triggered to be used for abuse, as sex slaves, rituals, assassins and otherwise.

11. They’re Afraid of Us!

I love this. This is empowering to the hilt. What many don’t understand is that we have them on the run. For all their seeming power and military and scientific might, the shift is happening and they don’t know what to do about it.

They’re a lesser model. Advanced in some technological ways, but WAY behind us spiritually, where the real power is.

Chicken Shits Use Guns

Zbignew Brzezinski recently said the following, in a CFR moment of truth where he’s trying to instruct his disciples of ‘the plan‘ (which we’re not supposed to notice..)..the “problem of the global awakening” and how “it’s easier to kill a million people than to rule them”!

I know, hard to believe. But it’s true. Freaks run free here and now. Sick.
The Truth Goes Marching On!

These elements of Truth have come to light thanks to the enduring efforts of researchers and writers and written, audio and internet posters. Their efforts are not just not in vain, but changing the world!

Join us and respond to Truth. The empowerment you will experience is beyond comprehension as the wake up continues to transpire like the true dawn of a new day.

I hope this has been empowering. Be encouraged, be blessed, and be active!

Much love,

Zen

SOURCE

China Calls For International Oversight Of The US Dollar

China Calls For International Oversight Of The US Dollar, Suggests Single Global Currency Replace It

Alexander Higgins

China is demanding “international supervision over the U.S. dollar” and says they are looking at the option of creating a new single global currency to replace the dollar altogether.

China has published an article in its stated owned Xinhua news agency that rails against the United States for losing its AAA credit rating and has issued a series of demands to U.S. policy makers and the international community.

China begins by railing against the “arrogance and cynicism from some Western commentators” in regard to the credit rating downgrade of U.S. debt that was issued by China’s Dagong Global credit rating agency last year and goes on to state that they have the right to demand the U.S. address its debt problem to protect the Chinese dollar.

In concluding the article China is calling upon the international community to intervene with a program of “international supervision over the U.S dollar” while indicating they are looking at the option of creating a global currency to replace the dollar altogether.

China has released a scathing op-ed in Xinhua, the official Chinese news agency, in which the authors waste no time to humiliate a “debt-ridden Uncle Sam” following the S&P downgrade, in the most violent surge in the recent war of words between the ascendent and descendent superpowers. Some choice selections: “Dagong Global, a fledgling Chinese rating agency, degraded the U.S. treasury bonds late last year, yet its move was met then with a sense of arrogance and cynicism from some Western commentators. Now S&P has proved what its Chinese counterpart has done is nothing but telling the global investors the ugly truth”, “China, the largest creditor of the world’s sole superpower, has every right now to demand the United States to address its structural debt problems and ensure the safety of China’s dollar assets.” It doesnt stop there, “[the US] should also stop its old practice of letting its domestic electoral politics take the global economy hostage and rely on the deep pockets of major surplus countries to make up for its perennial deficits.” China takes the opportunity to give the US a little lecture on a broken way of life: “All Americans, both beltway politicians and those on Main Street, have to do some serious soul-searching to bring their country back from a potential financial abyss.” And lastly, China once again gets back to its pissing contest about whose reserve currency is bigger: “International supervision over the issue of U.S. dollars should be introduced and a new, stable and secured global reserve currency may also be an option to avert a catastrophe caused by any single country.” Just wild fun.

There is alleged evidence the United States has no Gold left at Fort Knox. Rumors that the government is providing American land as collateral to China. It is true China has alreadydivested 97% of their US bond holdings. The US government is preparing for the inevitable and even the USDA is on record as predicting food riots in the US later this year. If the US does default. What would stop China, Russia or other debt holders from simply attacking. The answer is very little. The fact is, the collapse of the World’s lone superpower is contrived. It has been planned perfectly and executed flawlessly. Today, the World is on the road to unification. Tony Blair is spearheading the effort to create a One World Church. It is coming folks. The END truly is near. Very soon we will see One number to rule all of us. What will YOU do? – PECAN


From Xinhua:

After historic downgrade, U.S. must address its chronic debt problems

The days when the debt-ridden Uncle Sam could leisurely squander unlimited overseas borrowing appeared to be numbered as its triple A-credit rating was slashed by Standard & Poor’s (S&P) for the first time on Friday.

Though the U.S. Treasury promptly challenged the unprecedented downgrade, many outside the United States believe the credit rating cut is an overdue bill that America has to pay for its own debt addition and the short-sighted political wrangling in Washington.

Dagong Global, a fledgling Chinese rating agency, degraded the U.S. treasury bonds late last year, yet its move was met then with a sense of arrogance and cynicism from some Western commentators. Now S&P has proved what its Chinese counterpart has done is nothing but telling the global investors the ugly truth.

China, the largest creditor of the world’s sole superpower, has every right now to demand the United States to address its structural debt problems and ensure the safety of China’s dollar assets.

To cure its addiction to debts, the United States has to reestablish the common sense principle that one should live within its means.

S&P has already indicated that more credit downgrades may still follow. Thus, if no substantial cuts were made to the U.S. gigantic military expenditure and bloated social welfare costs, the downgrade would prove to be only a prelude to more devastating credit rating cuts, which will further roil the global financial markets all along the way.

Moreover, the spluttering world economic recovery would be very likely to be undermined and fresh rounds of financial turmoil could come back to haunt us all.

The U.S. government has to come to terms with the painful fact that the good old days when it could just borrow its way out of messes of its own making are finally gone.

It should also stop its old practice of letting its domestic electoral politics take the global economy hostage and rely on the deep pockets of major surplus countries to make up for its perennial deficits.

A little self-discipline would not be too uncomfortable for the United States, the world’s largest economy and issuer of international reserve currency, to bear.

Though chances for a full-blown U.S. default are still slim now, the S&P downgrade serves as another warning shot about the long-term sustainability of the U.S. government finances.

International supervision over the issue of U.S. dollars should be introduced and a new, stable and secured global reserve currency may also be an option to avert a catastrophe caused by any single country.

For centuries, it was the exuberant energy and innovation that has sustained America’s role in the world and maintained investors’ confidence in dollar assets. But now, mounting debts and ridiculous political wrestling in Washington have damaged America’s image abroad.

All Americans, both beltway politicians and those on Main Street, have to do some serious soul-searching to bring their country back from a potential financial abyss.

The events in this video look more and more likely every day.

Reuters also reported on the Xinhua article and added that China will now be forced to dump the U.S. dollar.

The downgrade of U.S. credit rating is expect to take a major toll on China’s over $2 trillion in investments in the U.S. dollar.

With no where else to put all of that money China will be forced to invest it into a one world currency.

Reuters reports:

China blasts U.S. over debt problems, calls for dollar oversight

SHANGHAI | Sat Aug 6, 2011 2:35am EDT

(Reuters) – China roundly condemned the United States for its “debt addiction” and “short sighted” political wrangling and said the world needed a new stable global reserve currency.

In a harshly-worded commentary by the official Xinhua news agency on Saturday, China gave its first official comments on the United States losing its gilded AAA long-term credit rating from Standard & Poor’s.

[…]

Chinese economists said the U.S. credit rating downgrade posed a great risk to financial markets and they expected it to prompt China, the world’s biggest holder of U.S. Treasuries, to accelerate the diversification of its holdings.

[…]

“China will be forced to consider other investments for its reserves. U.S. Treasuries aren’t as safe anymore. There is a class of assets out there that are more risky than AAA, but less risky than AA+. China didn’t consider these investments before, but now it would be forced to do so,
” Li said.

[…]

Source: Reuters

infowars.com

Inflation will hit 50% predicts Congressman Ron Paul!

Paul tells Manchester crowd inflation will hit 50 percent

By MARK HAYWARD
New Hampshire Union Leader
Published Jun 11, 2011 at 3:00 am (Updated Jun 10, 2011)
ShareThis

MANCHESTER — Texas congressman Ron Paul on Friday predicted that inflation will hit 50 percent in the next couple of years, thanks to the massive debt the country has accumulated.

Paul, who spoke to admirers and Republican activists at a Manchester house party, said the inflation will act like default.

Social Security checks will still be cut and interest payments will still be made, but the inflated dollars will allow the government to repay borrowed dollars with devalued money, Paul said.

“They cannot pay the debt,
” he said. “I don’t think that means you shouldn’t try and work things out, but with the size of this debt it never gets paid.”

The national debt is about $14.3 trillion.

Paul spoke to about 150 people at the home of Ovide and Bettie Lamontagne, who are hosting receptions for candidates in the Republican presidential primary.

The Texas physician is the sixth candidate to appear at their Young Street home.

Paul ranked second, with 9 percent of support, in the latest CNN/WMUR New Hampshire Primary Poll, which was conducted in mid-May. He was a distant second to former Massachusetts Gov. Mitt Romney but ahead of popular names such as Rudy Giuliani, Sarah Palin and Newt Gingrich.

In remarks to the crowd, Paul praised the pro-liberty leanings of New Hampshire and joked that his slogan is on New Hampshire license plates.

As a candidate four years ago, Paul was shut out of some Republican primary debates, but he said his credibility has grown since then, in part because of numerous television appearances over the last three years.

He told a reporter that former New Mexico Gov. Gary Johnson should be allowed into Monday’s debate, which is sponsored by the New Hampshire Union Leader, CNN and WMUR.

“He should be there. He’s been a governor for two terms,” Paul said.

Paul touched on many of his popular topics, but with some softening signs. The Federal Reserve should be abolished – eventually, he said.

He voted against the Republican’s Path to Prosperity, but he doesn’t attack it because Congressman Paul Ryan has gotten clobbered for it, he said.

And although he’s called Dr. No, Paul is really an optimist, he said.

In addressing one question, Paul said the country’s soldiers face rules of engagement because they have gotten bogged down doing social work and police duties.

“If you go to war, you fight a war,”
Paul said.

John Kroehler, the commander of the Bedford VFW, asked Paul the question. He said he liked Paul’s answer, and U.S. troops should no longer be in Afghanistan and Iraq.

“Our obligation,” Kroehler said, “is to protect the country, not be the world’s policeman.”

SOURCE

Inflation 2011: Honey – They Shrunk Our Paychecks

Inflation 2011: Honey – They Shrunk Our Paychecks

Do you ever have the feeling that there are holes in your pockets? These days our money seems to slip through our hands faster than ever. The Federal Reserve keeps telling us that the rate of inflation in 2011 is “close to zero”, and this is causing confusion for many Americans because they are making just as much money as they did in previous years but it doesn’t seem to go nearly as far. So what in the world is going on out there? Well, sadly, the truth is that we really don’t even know what the government considers “inflation” to be anymore. The way that the U.S. government calculates inflation has changed an astounding 24 times since 1978. You see, it is always politically beneficial to have a low inflation rate, so recent administrations have been changing the formula constantly in an attempt to look good. But these days most Americans know something is up. All they have to do is stop at a gas station, go shopping for food or open up their bills. The reality is that inflation in 2011 is about as bad as we saw back in the 1970s, it is just that the government is much less honest about it now.

Many years ago Kenny Rogers released a song that contained the following lyrics….

You got to know when to hold em, know when to fold em
Know when to walk away and know when to run
You never count your money when you’re sitting at the table
There’ll be time for counting when the dealer’s done

Well, the U.S. middle class has been dealt a losing hand, but in the game of life you just can’t fold.

Over the past 3 decades, the average household income for the bottom 80 percent of Americans has been remarkably flat. In fact, over the past several years we have actually seen median household income decline several times. If you do not know about how the U.S. middle class is being ripped to shreds, just read this article. Without a doubt, America is getting poorer.

Well, not the top 1 percent, but the vast majority of the rest of us sure are.

Meanwhile, prices have started to rise with a vengeance.

According to an article in the Daily Mail, a Memorial Day cookout will cost you 29 percent more this year than it did last year.

That doesn’t sound good.

Will it be 29 percent more expensive again next year?

Perhaps some of us will just have to stop having Memorial Day cookouts because we can’t afford them anymore.

The price of gas is also digging into our paychecks big time.

A gallon of gas costs about a dollar more than it did a year ago, but we can’t avoid buying gas. All of us have got to get to work and drive to the store.

Sadly, each time the price of gasoline goes up 50 cents it takes about $70 billion out of the U.S. economy (on a yearly basis).

A recent article in USA Today described the kind of impact these high gas prices are having on average American families….

For every $10 the typical household earns before taxes, almost a full dollar now goes toward gas, a 40 percent bigger bite than normal.

Households spent an average of $369 on gas last month. In April 2009, they spent just $201.

But don’t worry, according to Ben Bernanke we barely have any inflation at all in 2011.

Some companies are trying to avoid raising their prices by reducing their package sizes. A recent article posted on Marketwatch entitled “Inflation diet: same price, less product” explored this phenomenon in detail. Millions of Americans are going to the supermarket and are finding that many of their favorite products are now 10 or 20 percent smaller and yet they are paying the same price as before.

Another thing that is happening is that product quality is going down. Have you noticed how things just don’t seem to be made the way that they used to? This is not a coincidence.

According a recent article on CNBC, retailers are skimping on quality as a way to deal with rising costs….

According to Global Hunter Securities Macro and Consumer Strategist Richard Hastings, retailers have been collaborating with their production contractors for about two years. They are trying to push back on the total volume, cost and weight of every unit.

“Along the way, the consumer barely noticed. By now, everybody knows something is wrong,” said Hastings. “If we had to put a number on it, it’s probably a 7.5% decline in total quality and durability of products compared to a bigger increase in the cost of production per unit made outside of the U.S.”

But no matter how hard companies try to hide it, at some point the American people are going to wake up and they are going to realize that they aren’t getting as much for their money as they were before.

This is why so many people get upset when the Federal Reserve and the U.S. government devalue our money. Inflation is a “hidden tax” on every single one of us. When our dollars don’t buy as much stuff, that means that we are all poorer than we were before.

All of this inflation is coming at a time when the economy is really struggling. Personally, I am seeing all kinds of signals that the economy is really starting to slow down once again.

What is going to make things even worse is all of the government austerity that is going to be implemented over the next couple of years.

Once upon a time, a government job was the safest kind of a job you could have. Sadly, as a recent Reuters article noted, those days are long gone….

Around 450,000 people who work for U.S. states, counties, cities, towns and villages could get pink slips in fiscal 2012, sharply up from the 300,000 positions shed this year, a report said on Monday.

So should we, as many of our liberal friends insist, tax the rich so that we can pay for all of those government workers?

Well, the truth is that the wealthy are already being taxed into oblivion. If you doubt this, just read this editorial in The Wall Street Journal: “A 62% Top Tax Rate?”

Most of the “ultra-wealthy” have learned how to avoid most of this taxation by moving their wealth offshore. In fact, as I have written about previously, it is estimated that a third of all the wealth in the world is now held in “offshore” tax havens.

So why are we seeing so much inflation right now?

Well, I covered that in my previous article entitled “When Faith In U.S. Dollars And U.S. Debt Is Dead The Game Is Over – And That Day Is Closer Than You May Think“.

The Federal Reserve and our politicians in Washington D.C. have been very naughty. They have been systematically destroying the value of our dollars.

Someday when you are using your money as toilet paper because toilet paper is actually much more valuable than dollars are you will wish that the American people had stood up and insisted on a different path.

Don’t laugh – during the hyperinflation that the Weimar Republic experienced in the 1920s, German citizens were actually burning stacks of money in their furnaces in order to keep their homes warm.

100 years ago, a U.S. dollar had more than 20 times the purchasing power than it has today.

Sadly, we are now in a terminal phase of dollar devaluation. It is only going to get worse from here. Someday we will look back and long for the days of “low inflation” that we had back in 2011.

SOURCE

When it comes to money, Ben Stein doesn’t mess around

Even Ben Stein Is Warning That An Economic Collapse Is Coming

He sure has come a long way since “Ferris Bueller’s Day Off”. During a recent television segment for CBS, Ben Stein declared that “the tea leaves are ominous” and he warned that an economic collapse may be coming. In particular, Ben Stein is deeply concerned about inflation. During his recent appearance on CBS, Stein proclaimed that the Federal Reserve is “just shoving money out the door as fast as it can” and that this could have horrific consequences for the U.S. financial system. Sadly, Ben Stein is exactly right on this point. The Federal Reserve has already injected enough money into the financial system to create an inflationary disaster. Fortunately most of this liquidity is still being held by the banks (this will be further explored below), but once all of that money starts getting released into the financial system it is going to unleash economic chaos.

In the video that you are about to watch, Ben Stein states that “when serious inflation hits, it hits everyone”.

And that is absolutely true. Inflation is a hidden tax on ever single dollar that each one of us holds. Nobody can cheat that hidden tax and nobody can escape from it.

You may have noticed that the price of gas is going up.

In fact, just the other day UPI reported that the price of gas at one station in the Washington D.C. area was up to 5 dollars a gallon.

Can it get much worse?

Well, actually yes it can.

Richard Hastings, a strategist at Global Hunter Securities, recently told CNBC that he believes that we could potentially see $6 gas at some point this summer.

Do you think that a lot of American families will rethink their summer vacations if that happens?

You betcha.

Perhaps Americans will just fly instead.

Well, that is rapidly becoming more expensive as well. Just check out what one recent CNN article had to say about rising airfares….

Late Tuesday, Southwest Airlines raised all of its round-trip fares by $10. Delta (DAL, Fortune 500) initiated this latest round of price increases on Monday, and as of midday Wednesday American Airlines (AMR, Fortune 500), JetBlue (JBLU) and United Airlines (UAL) had matched it.

As Ben Stein also notes in the video below, food prices are soaring as well. Rampant money printing by the Federal Reserve and serious crop problems all over the globe have created a “perfect storm” for agricultural commodities. In the video, Stein sounds downright apocalyptic as he describes crop failures around the world….

But now, we are getting serious crop shortfalls in China – an enormously important agricultural producer and consumer. U.S. crop forecasts are also disappointing. There are huge problems in Australia, South America, and Russia. Corn, wheat, rice and other foodstuff prices are just going wild.

And you know what?

Ben Stein is right.

In a recent article about the global food crisis, I detailed some of the agricultural commodity price increases that we have seen….

*According to the World Bank, the global price of food has risen 36% over the past 12 months.

*The commodity price of wheat has approximately doubled since last summer.

*The commodity price of corn has also about doubled since last summer.

*The commodity price of soybeans is up about 50% since last June.

*The commodity price of orange juice has doubled since 2009.

But it isn’t just food and gas that are going up. The value of virtually all “hard assets” is going up.

Investors are running to precious metals such as gold and silver in a desperate attempt to preserve their wealth. Gold and silver have been absolutely skyrocketing. The price of gold set another brand new all-time record high this week. The price of silver hit a 31-year high today.

So why is this happening?

One of the biggest reasons for all of this is that the Federal Reserve has been flooding the system with new money. In the video below, Ben Stein points to quantitative easing as the primary reason why we are seeing so much inflation….

But most important of all, the Fed is just shoving money out the door as fast as it can, creating piles of cash in banks.

The Federal Reserve had hoped that economic growth would be sparked by all of this new cash, but that is only happening to a minimal degree.

Instead, what Ben Stein believes all of this new money is going to bring about is a situation known as “stagflation”.

Do you remember the 1970s and the “misery index”?

Well, we seem to be headed for a repeat of those days.

In a previous article, I defined stagflation….

Stagflation exists when inflation and unemployment are both at high levels at the same time.

Up to this point, we have had high unemployment but relatively low levels of inflation.

But now we are going to get to enjoy high unemployment and high inflation at the same time.

Oh goody!

Video of Ben Stein’s recent appearance on CBS is posted below. You can read a transcript of his remarks here. It is amazing that a mainstream news outlet would allow this much truth to get out….

Look, the reality is that you cannot pump this much money into the financial system without there eventually being very serious consequences.

For decades the Federal Reserve has been systematically debasing the U.S. dollar, but what the Fed has been doing to the money supply over the past couple of years is absolutely unprecedented. Just check out the chart below….

So why hasn’t all of this new cash caused chaos in the economy already?

Well, because most of it is still trapped in the financial system. Banks have been reluctant to loan it out. Instead, they seem content to keep most of it on reserve at the Fed.

But if all of this new money starts leaking out into the economy it is going to drive prices up. When you have lots more money chasing roughly the same number of goods and services it is inevitable that inflation will result.

Robert Wenzel of EconomicPolicyJournal.com believes that more quantitative easing is not even necessary to turn the U.S. economy into a hyperinflationary nightmare. In fact, Wenzel says that there are enough excess reserves at the Fed right now to turn us into another Zimbabwe….

With over $1.4 TRILLION in excess reserves, Bernanke never has to resort to QE style monetary operations ever again, to print money. If those excess reserves leak into the system, Bernanke has enough sitting there to make Zimbabwe look like a model of prudent money management. As per usual, Bernanke has most of the media and Fed watchers looking at the wrong card.

Forget about QE3, keep your eye on excess reserves. Excess reserves are funds that are not in the system bidding up prices, but when they enter the system by banks using them to make loans, have the potential to result in a multiple of their size, when they impact the money supply. Because of this potential for multiple size impact, excess reserve entering the economy are considered high-powered money.

We would have never even been in this position if we had never allowed the Federal Reserve to be created and had never gotten 14 trillion dollars in debt. But now America has a debt problem that can never be solved under the current system. We are locked into a debt spiral from which there is no escape.

Last year, the U.S. government spent more on interest on the national debt than on the following departments combined….

*The Department of Health and Human Services

*The Department of Energy

*The Department of Veterans Affairs

*The Department of Justice

*The Department of Homeland Security

*The Department of Agriculture

*The Treasury Department

*The Department of Labor

Ouch!

But right now the U.S. is still able to borrow tons of money at super low interest rates.

So what happens if interest rates go up?

It could potentially be catastrophic.

That is why the decision by S&P to downgrade its outlook on U.S. government debt was such a big thing the other day. The U.S. still has a “AAA” rating, but S&P is warning that the AAA rating is in danger.

So what would it mean if the U.S. lost the AAA rating that it currently holds?

The Washington Post recently described it this way….

A credit rating downgrade for the United States would spell even more financial trouble for the U.S. government, hampering its ability to borrow money as investors demand higher yields to make up for the increased risk. That would cause its national debt to balloon further and increase the need to hike taxes or make even more painful cuts in spending.

But the U.S. government continues to borrow money like there is no tomorrow and Ben Bernanke and his friends at the Fed continue to recklessly print money.

As bad as things may seem for many of you right now, the truth is that what we are experiencing at the moment is a “false bubble of prosperity”. Things are eventually going to get much, much worse.

Enjoy this time of economic peace and stability while you still can. Our leaders have absolutely destroyed our economic future and we are going to want to have some good memories to hold on to while we are living through economic hell in the years ahead.

Even Ben Stein Is Warning That An Economic Collapse Is Coming

Garden As If Your Life Depended On It, Because It Will

Garden As If Your Life Depended On It, Because It Will

By Ellen LaConte

30 March, 2011
Countercurrents.org

Spring has sprung—at least south of the northern tier of states where snow still has a ban on it—and the grass has ‘riz. And so has the price of most foods, which is particularly devastating just now when so many Americans are unemployed, underemployed, retired or retiring, on declining or fixed incomes and are having to choose between paying their mortgages, credit card bills, car payments, and medical and utility bills and eating enough and healthily. Many are eating more fast food, prepared foods, junk food—all of which are also becoming more expensive—or less food.

In some American towns, and not just impoverished backwaters, as many as 30 percent of residents can’t afford to feed themselves and their families sufficiently, let alone nutritiously. Here in the Piedmont Triad of North Carolina where I live it’s 25 percent. Across the country one out of six of the elderly suffers from malnutrition and hunger. And the number of children served one or two of their heartiest, healthiest meals by their schools grows annually as the number of them living at poverty levels tops twenty percent. Thirty-seven million Americans rely on food banks that now routinely sport half-empty shelves and report near-empty bank accounts. And this is a prosperous nation!

In some cases this round of price hikes on everything from cereal and steak to fresh veggies and bread—and even the flour that can usually be bought cheaply to make it— will be temporary. But over the long term the systems that have provided most Americans with a diversity, quantity and quality of foods envied by the rest of the world are not going to be as reliable as they were.

What’s for Supper Down the Road?

As they move through the next few decades Americans can expect

§ the price of conventionally produced food to rise and not come down again,

§ prices to rollercoaster so that budgeting is unpredictable,

§ some foods to become very expensive compared to what we’re used to

§ and others, beginning with some of the multiple versions of the same thing made by the same company to garner a bigger market share and more shelf space, to gradually become unavailable.

Tremors in food supply chains and pricing will make gardening look like a lot more than a hobby, a seasonal workout, a practical way to fill your pantry with your summer favorites, or a physically, spiritually and mentally healing activity, or all four. Gardening and small-scale and collective farming, especially of staple crops and the ones that could stave off malnutrition, could become as important as bringing home the bacon, both the piggy and the dollar kind. Why?

Why’s Gardening So Important Now?

There are at least five reasons why more of us should take up spade, rake and hoe, make compost and raise good soil and garden beds with a vengeance, starting this spring and with an eye toward forever.

1) Peak oil. Most petroleum experts agree that we shot past peak oil in the US around 1971. Lest you’ve missed the raging ( http://www.postcarbon.org ), that’s the point at which more than half the readily, affordably retrievable oil in reserves has been used up, what remains is more expensive to retrieve, and the dregs are irretrievable. We’ve shot or are about to shoot past peak worldwide, estimates of when ranging from 2007 to 2013, with many oil company execs agreeing to at least the latter. There are no new cheap-easy oil fields coming on line. Any new fields you hear about or new methods, like tar sands drilling are expensive, water guzzling, dangerous, environmentally disastrous and unlikely to produce more than a few years worth of oil, and that a decade or more down the line. That means abundant, cheap oil is about to be history. What difference does that make?

For one thing, there is no replacement for oil that can do all that oil has done as cheaply and universally as oil has done it. I offer an exercise in Life Rules, “The ABC’s of Peak Oil” which helps readers imaginatively subtract from their lives everything that depends in one way or another on cheap easy oil. It doesn’t leave much. (See Beth Terry’s website ( http://myplasticfreelife.com/plasticfreeguide/ ), for example, for what subtracting plastics may entail.)

The global economy that presently supplies us with our food, runs on cheap oil and lots of it. It runs slower and less predictably on expensive oil that’s hard to get because it’s located in hard-to-reach or high-risk conflict-ridden zones. Cheap, abundant food on the shelves of grocery and big box stores and food banks, on our tables and in our bellies depends on cheap abundant oil for fertilizers, pesticides, and herbicides, and to power farm machinery and transport food from fields to processors and packagers and then to purveyors and consumers, around the world. Past peak, that system’s going to have the half-life of the strontium 90 that’s escaping the Fukushimi Dai-ichi reactor: 29 years, or there abouts. One good global crisis, and not that long.

2) Peak soil & space: A couple of links between peak oil and peak soil: First, it matters that one of the proposed alternatives to oil is biofuels. Acreage around the world is being converted from production of corn, wheat and soy for human and animal consumption—i.e., food—to production of ethanol and biofuels to put in trucks and cars and . . . Which makes remaining corn, et al, more expensive. Some energeconomy geniuses are proposing that Afghanis, for example, convert the fields of opium poppies that are their primary agricultural export, not to growing grains or legumes or other staple foods, but to biofuel ( http://www.theatlantic.com/magazine/archive/2011/03/putting-poppies-in-the-gas-tank/8379/ ), which would, not coincidentally, make the gasoline that goes in American military equipment much cheaper and provide Afghanis with a profitable market item rather than food.

According to a 2009 National Geographic staff report, ( http://ngm.nationalgeographic.com/2009/06/cheap-food/bourne-text ), “The corn used to make a 25-gallon tank of ethanol would feed one person for a year.” Tell that to Archer-Daniels-Midland, Al Gore’s deep-pockets friend and mega-ethanol and corn products producer.

Second, the huge oil-gluttonous machinery that has made factory farming possible has compacted soils, literally crushing the life out of them.

Arable land in the developing or so-called Third World has been at a premium since time immemorial, thanks to geographic location and/or persistent plundering by empires old and new. Revolutions in north Africa and the Middle East are occurring not just to obtain more democratic governments but also to obtain more food and more affordable food. Revolutionaries are barking up a tree that’s seen better days.

In the United States and elsewhere in the developed, read “First” world, arable land has reached peak production. All those petroleum-based products that fueled the Green Revolution of the last century, also produce so many crops, constantly, with support from toxic chemicals and without concern for the microbes that make soil a live, self-regenerating system, that most American farmland—if its farmers didn’t go organic a while back—is comprised of dead soils. Peak oil makes a repeat of the petroleum-driven 20 th century Green Revolution impossible ( http://ngm.nationalgeographic.com/2009/06/cheap-food/green-revolution-illustration ), which is good for soil and other living things, not so much for food prices and supplies.

After peak, in soil like in oil, comes descent. Adding insult to injury, every year farmers lose thousands of acres of arable land to urban and suburban sprawl and more tons of topsoil than they produce of grain and other field crops to attrition. Half the Earth’s original trove of topsoil, like that which once permitted the American Midwest to feed the world, has been lost to wind and erosion. Millions of years in the making, it has been depleted and degraded by industrialized agriculture in only a couple of centuries. China’s soils ride easterly winds across the Pacific to settle out on cars and rooftops in California while the American Bread Basket’s soils are building deltas and dead zones at the mouth of the Mississippi. Like oil, that soil isn’t coming back. We can only build it, help it to build itself and wait.

3) Monoculture : We can cut to the chase on this one. The food we eat is produced on industrial-strength, fossil-fuel-driven super farms. Those farms practice monoculture: the planting one crop, often of one genetic strain of that crop, at a time and sometimes year after year over vast landscapes of plowed field. When thousands of acres of farmland are sown with the same genetic strain of grain, uncongenial bout of weather, disease or pest to which that strain is susceptible can wipe out the whole crop. At present the Ug99 fungus, called stem rust, which emerged a decade ago in Africa, could wipe out more than 80% of the world’s wheat crops as it spreads, according to a 2009 article in the L. A. Times ( http://articles.latimes.com/2009/jun/14/science/sci-wheat-rust14 ). Recent studies follow its appearance in other countries downwind of eastern Africa where it originated, including Yemen and Iran (where revolutionaries are already protesting rising prices and shortages), which opens the possibility of its emergence further downwind in Central and Eastern Asia. The race is on to breed resistant plants before it reaches Canada or the U.S. But it can take a decade or more to create a universally adaptable new genetic line that is resistant to a new disease like stem rust that can travel much faster than that. The current spike in the price of wheat is due in part to Ug99 which might properly be renamed “Ugh.”

4) Climate instability. Bad — uncongenial — weather has lately devastated crops in the upper Midwest, Florida, Mexico, Russia, China, Australia, parts of Africa and elsewhere. Many climate scientists believe we’ve passed the equivalent of peak friendly and familiar weather, too. And while increasing heat will bedevil harvests ( http://ngm.nationalgeographic.com/2009/06/cheap-food/stanmeyer-photography ), intense cold, downpours and flooding, drought and destructive storm systems will make farming an increasingly hellish occupation if profit is what’s being farmed for. The transitional climate will be unpredictable from season and will produce more extremes of weather and weather-related disasters which means farmers will not be able to assume much about growing seasons, rainfall patterns and getting crops through to harvest. If the past is precedent, the transition from the climate we’ve been used to for 10,000 years to whatever stable climate emerges out of climate chaos next, could take decades, centuries or even millennia. Especially if we keep messing with it. When a whole nation’s or region’s staple crops, especially grains, are lost or on-again-off-again, everything down the line from the crops themselves become more expensive, from meat, poultry and dairy to every kind of processed food. I.e., the food we shop for as if supermarkets were actually where food comes from.

5) The roller-coaster economy . This isn’t the place for me to offer my explanation for the probability of global economic collapse. (See ( www.ellenlaconte.com/excerpts-from-life-rules/#chpfour ) for that.) No pundits, talking-heads or economic analysts (well, very few) deny there are rough economic times ahead. Even many of the cautious among them acknowledge that we may be looking at five or six years of high unemployment and many of the lost jobs won’t be coming back. The less cautious, like me, predict the collapse of the whole fossil-fueled, funny-money, inequitable, overly-complicated global economic system in the lifetimes of anyone under 50. Well, at the rate we’re going in all the wrong directions politically and economically, I hazard the guess, anyone under 80.

Clearly, depending on the present system to provide us with most or all of our food reliably or long-term, is unwise in the extreme. Which is how we get back to why we need to garden as if our lives depended on it. Bringing food production processes and systems closer to home is going to prove vital to our survival. We need to take producing our own and each other’s food as seriously as we’ve taken producing a money income because growing numbers of us won’t have enough money to buy food in the conventional ways and there will be less of it to buy. So what’s our recourse?

Gardening Like Everybody’s Business

Under the influence and auspices of the prevailing economy, most Americans have forgotten how to provide for themselves. We’ve become accustomed to earning money with which we buy provisions. That process is about the have the legs kicked out from under it. Instead of earning money (or its funny-money kin like credit cards) to buy the things we need, we’ll need to start providing more of those things for ourselves and each other locally and (bio)regionally. Gardening — and small-scale farming — while they will need to be undertaken in a businesslike fashion will be less about doing business than about everyone’s having something to eat and more people being busy providing it. And while not everyone will be able to garden or farm, we are all able to get up close and personal with those who do.

In a subsequent column I’ll review five variations on the theme of gardening to counterbalance the five reasons I think we need to.

§ Back-yard, back-porch, back-40 gardening

§ Community gardens

§ Community Supported Agriculture

§ Urban gardening

§ Taking the ‘


Ellen LaConte, an independent scholar, organic gardener, freelance writer, speaker and editor, living in the Yadkin River watershed of the Piedmont bioregion of North Carolina, is a contributing editor to Green Horizon Magazine and The Ecozoic and Advisory Board member at the EarthWalk Alliance. She was assistant to the late homesteader and bestselling Living the Good Life author, Helen Nearing, and as Nearing’s executor helped found The Good Life Center at Forest Farm in Harborside, Maine. Her memoir of Nearing, On Light Alone was published in South Korea as well as the US. Her most recent book is the controversial Life Rules: Why so much is going wrong everywhere at once & how Life teaches us to fix it (Green Horizon/iUniverse, 2010) can be examined at www.liferules-thebook.info . LaConte publishes a quarterly online newsletter, Starting Point, and can be reached at ( www.ellenlaconte.com ).

http://www.countercurrents.org/laconte300311.htm