Montag, 15. September 2008

38 Retired Military Leaders Call on Congress to End Secret Prisons

Human Rights First

US army is breaking rules to make terrorists talk

THE US military is training psychiatrists to interrogate terrorism suspects, in defiance of internationally agreed codes of conduct which bar doctors from involvement in interrogation.

Intelligence officer claims CIA was complicit in torture in Uzbekistan

Officer also claims British UN official was killed by order of Uzbek president Karimov.

From Information Clearing House

IAEA confirms nuclear Iran on right track

"The agency has been able to continue to verify the non-diversion of declared nuclear material in Iran," read the latest International Atomic Energy Agency (IAEA) report on Iran's nuclear activities.

From Information Clearing House

This is Your Nation on White Privilege

By Tim Wise

For those who still can't grasp the concept of white privilege, or who are constantly looking for some easy-to-understand examples of it, perhaps this list will help.

Military Industrial Complex 2.0

Frida Berrigan, "Seven years into George W. Bush's Global War on Terror, the Pentagon is embroiled in two big wars, a potentially explosive war of words with Tehran, and numerous smaller conflicts, and it is leaning ever more heavily on private military contractors to get by. Once upon a time, soldiers did more than pick up a gun. They picked up trash. They cut hair and delivered mail. They fixed airplanes and inflated truck tires. Not anymore. All of those tasks are now the responsibility of private military corporations."


Taking on the military industrial complex

Cheney Shielded Bush From FISA Crisis

Barton Gellman, The Washington Post: "What Addington wrote for Bush that day was more transcendent than that. He drew up new language in which the president relied on his own authority to certify the program as lawful. Bush expressly overrode the Justice Department and any act of Congress or judicial decision that purported to constrain his power as commander in chief. Only Richard M. Nixon, in an interview after leaving the White House in disgrace, claimed authority so nearly unlimited. The specter of future prosecutions hung over the program, now that Justice had ruled it illegal. 'Pardon was in the air,' said one of the lawyers involved."

After Frantic Day, Wall Street Banks Falter

Andrew Ross Sorkin, The New York Times: "In one of the most dramatic days in Wall Street’s history, Merrill Lynch agreed to sell itself on Sunday to Bank of America for roughly $50 billion to avert a deepening financial crisis, while another prominent securities firm, Lehman Brothers, said it would seek bankruptcy protection and hurtled toward liquidation after it failed to find a buyer. The humbling moves, which reshape the landscape of American finance, mark the latest chapter in a tumultuous year in which once-proud financial institutions have been brought to their knees as a result of hundreds of billions of dollars in losses because of bad mortgage finance and real estate investments."

Big Banks Go Bust: Time to Reform Wall Street

Dean Baker, The Campaign for America's Future: "With the demise of Fannie Mae, Freddie Mac, IndyMac, Bear Stearns and now Lehman Brothers, we've been treated to the failure of more major financial firms than during any year since the Great Depression. The sight of rich bankers getting the boot might be lots of fun if it were just a spectator sport. Unfortunately, we are in the game with these clowns."

Wall Street Crisis Is Culmination of 28 Years of Deregulation

David Lightman, McClatchy Newspapers: "No one cog in the federal government's machine of financial regulation let down the country by failing to prevent the latest shakeout on Wall Street. The entire system did. 'They just haven't done a particularly good job,' said James Barth, a senior finance fellow at the Milken Institute, a nonpartisan research group based in Los Angeles. Kathleen Day, a spokeswoman for the Center for Responsible Lending, a consumer-oriented research group, explained the regulatory lapses more starkly: 'The job of regulators is that when the party's in full swing, make sure the partygoers drink responsibly,' she said. 'Instead, they let everyone drink as much as they wanted and then handed them the car keys.'"

Lack of Government Regulation Led to Troubles Plaguing Wall Street

Beth Healy, The Boston Globe: "Amid a wave of unprecedented Wall Street failures and government bailouts, Representative Barney Frank, chairman of the House Financial Services Committee, holds a powerful post in the oversight of the nation's financial system. He is holding a number of hearings on these issues, including one today on the auction-rate securities scandal that has forced Wall Street to buy back nearly $60 billion in investments from customers."


Capital Punishment: Lehman on its way to the Gallows?

By Mike Whitney

The funny thing about capitalism is that you need capital to play. When the bank-vault is full of nothing but worthless mortgage-backed securities (MBS) and overvalued junk bonds; the whole thing goes belly-up fast.

`Tectonic' Shift on Wall Street as Lehman Fails, Merrill Sold

By Christine Harper

In the biggest reshaping of the financial industry since the Great Depression, two of Wall Street's most storied firms, Merrill Lynch & Co. and Lehman Brothers Holdings Inc., headed toward extinction.

Financial Russian Roulette


2008 could be 1931 revisited.

The Crash of Western Capitalist Civilization?

By Richard_C_Cook

"Train-wreck" doesn't even begin to describe what is starting to happen to the U.S. today with the financial crisis, an onrushing depression, and the failure of George W. Bush's war policy as he is faced down by Iran and the Russian bear. But in an even broader sense, the West, as a civilization, after a century of world war and the utter failure of global finance capitalism, may have reached its limits.

Lehman Workers Clear Desks, Weep After Bankruptcy

Lehman Brothers Holdings Inc.'s employees worldwide are clearing their desks, waiting to hear if they'll be paid, and starting to look for work after the investment bank filed for the biggest bankruptcy in history.

Wake-Up Call: Lehman's Mortgage Marks

Anyone else holding large amounts of tainted mortgages has to worry. Lehman's potential unwinding, along with any aggressive actions by Merrill and AIG to offload mortgage assets, could mean widespread losses as other banks mark down their own holdings.

The next big bang is private equity

Wall Street is in crisis, undoubtedly the worst in history, as one tarnished giant after another topples. The real problem, though, is no one can tell where it will end.

Wilbur Ross: Possibly a Thousand Banks Will Close

In an exclusive interview with, Wilbur Ross, chairman and CEO of WL Ross & Co., says he sees possibly as many as a thousand bank closures in the coming months.

How the Masters of the Universe Ran Amok and Cost us the Earth

By Bill Jamieson

SLAM. Slam. Slam. Slam. Like a scene from a gathering of Mafia dons, the doors of 30 black Lincolns slammed shut as their besuited occupants stepped out into a Manhattan downpour - and into a global financial storm. That storm broke yesterday, with stock markets tumbling around the world. In London, the FTSE 100 plunged almost 4 per cent to 5204.2. - In the US, the Dow Jones industrial average suffered its biggest fall since 9/11.

From Information Clearing House


More Financial Turmoil to Come


The Glories of Change


Creative destruction on Wall Street

The Nation
by William Greider


The epic deflation of Wall Street rolls forward like a blood-spattered steam roller, claiming more important victims. It takes down noble old names like Merrill and Lehman Brothers, destroys the savings of large pension funds and mom-and-pop investors, throws tens of thousands of financial workers out of jobs. But let’s not dwell on the downside. This is the process Joseph A. Schumpeter famously described as ‘creative destruction’ — capitalism’s way of clearing away debris from the past so that new flowers may bloom. In this drama, what is being swept away is the monumental arrogance of celebrated financiers, also the fraudulent gimmicks that created lots of new billionaires by selling bad paper to the world’s investors. A great bubble of wealth grew in the canyons of Wall Street–a run-up of falsified financial assets that lasted for roughly twenty-five years. Now the air is rushing out of that balloon, no way to stop it...

Informant: Thomas L. Knapp

Are We Ready for Change?

Marc Ash, Truthout: "Change for the better begins with demanding it. The voter axiom, that we get what we demand, is as true today as it ever was. The country is suffering for reasons. Decisions have been made, and those decision form the basis for our predicament. In a democracy voting is a right, but with that right comes responsibilities. Reading is fundamental, if you are going to know how a problem has come to exist you must educate yourself. That will not happen on the television. John McCain's record is as plain as Barack Obama's, and certainly not difficult to research. Change - for the better - is always at hand. We get what we demand."

War crimes conference

Planning for the prosecution of high level American war criminals.

Granger cell tower triggers lawsuit

Neighbors fear health effects, reduced home values.

Tribune Staff Writer

GRANGER — As a boy, Tim Janowiak recalls camping so often on his grandparents' farm — land that is now the Knollwood subdivisions — that his parents jokingly claimed they hardly ever saw him.

As a man, that love of nature led him in 1991 to build a log cabin-style home on his parents' heavily wooded 10-acre property across Adams Road.

In his backyard, the 55-year-old South Bend firefighter had especially enjoyed raising pheasants and relaxing at a bonfire pit.

But he says his world changed in December 2006 when Charles S. Hayes Inc., despite heavy opposition from Janowiak and his neighbors, won county approval to erect a 120-foot cell phone tower next to Janowiak's home.


When weather changes history

Strike the Root
by Doug Herman


A disastrous rise of military industrial power, like a powerful storm surge, overwhelmed the old seawall of the Bill of Rights. That Category Six storm we now called the American empire, threatens to destroy the entire nation, the entire world, gathering strength these past several years...

Informant: Thomas L. Knapp

The end of the myths

Information Clearinghouse
by Bill Noxid


To be perfectly honest, it’s even hard for me to believe how much damage (or how much success — depending on how you look at it) they fashioned in a mere eight years … and I saw it coming a decade before that. They took virtually all of your rights, all of your future, all of your money, all of your health, all of your respect, and all of your dignity, and yet some of you would still rather hear how great this country is than accept the truth about what is happening and why. It’s the impenetrable American egotism that has led to this abyss and that has led you to be the least educated, most imprisoned, least healthy, most destructive, least honest, most hated populous and culture in the history of the world … and that is no small feat on this planet...

Informant: Thomas L. Knapp

Ten conservative myths about national security

Tom Paine/Our Future
by Sara Robinson


True confession: I was terrified on 9/11 — for all the right reasons. I wasn’t afraid of the terrorists. There are plenty of countries where people have lived for decades under the constant threat of unholy acts of terror — and yet people still get on buses and subways and airplanes, and life goes on. … No, what I was really afraid of was that too many of my fellow Americans would forget the lessons of their own history—that they’d lose track of who we are and where we’ve been and what we’re made of. I knew there was a real possibility that this time, we’d fail to live up to our reputation for cool, calm clarity in the face of crisis, and instead be goaded into taking counsel of our fears...

Informant: Thomas L. Knapp

Nationwide protests call on war resisters to stay, Harper to pack up

Canadian Press [Canada]


A series of cross-country protests staged in support of American war resisters Saturday turned highly partisan in tone as hundreds called for a change in government. Anti-Harper sentiment coursed through those attending the rallies, which were initially scheduled to coincide with the 10-day countdown to Iraq war resister Jeremy Hinzman’s deportation. As electioneering ramps up, the anti-war demonstrations became as much about knocking the Conservatives out of power as about allowing resisters to stay permanently in Canada...

Informant: Thomas L. Knapp

Fed moves to deepen financial crisis with new interventions

Indianapolis Star


The Federal Reserve announced late Sunday several steps to cope with the worst credit crisis in decades, including broadening the types of assets that investment banks can put up to get emergency loans from the Fed. The action came as U.S. and foreign commercial banks were hashing out a plan to inoculate the global financial system against the possible failure of Lehman Brothers...

Informant: Thomas L. Knapp

West Linn-Wilsonville school board to unplug cell towers, and some income

By Wendy Owen, The Oregonian

Sunday September 14, 2008, 9:45 PM

Attention cell phone, WiMax and other wireless companies: West Linn-Wilsonville School District doesn't want your towers near its schools no matter how much money you offer.

School board members worry about the potential health effects on their 8,300 students from the electromagnetic emissions.


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Jeder Dritte hört Phantom-Klingeln - Germany

Doch wenn man dann das Handy zückt, stellt man fest: Display leer, kein Anruf, keine SMS, einfach nichts. Nur Fehlalarm. Der Test: Klicken Sie rein und ...

On America’s Secret Fundamentalists

Robert Christgau

Party for the Homeland Security State

War Hero?

The President May Kill Anybody He Pleases?

Expulsions Stoke US-Latin American Dispute

BBC News: "A series of tit-for-tat expulsions has left the US without ambassadors in three Latin American countries. Bolivia and Venezuela have expelled their US envoys, accusing Washington of trying to oust Bolivia's government."


Bolivia and the Echoes of Allende

Morales Confronts the Insurrection


Morales faces a powerful economic and political elite aligned with the United States that is bent on reversing the limited reforms he has been able to implement during his nearly three years in power.

US Arms Sales Climbing Rapidly

Eric Lipton, The New York Times: "The Bush administration is pushing through a broad array of foreign weapons deals as it seeks to rearm Iraq and Afghanistan, contain North Korea and Iran, and solidify ties with onetime Russian allies. From tanks, helicopters and fighter jets to missiles, remotely piloted aircraft and even warships, the Department of Defense has agreed so far this fiscal year to sell or transfer more than $32 billion in weapons and other military equipment to foreign governments, compared with $12 billion in 2005."

Conflict Over Spying Led White House to Brink

Barton Gellman, of The Washington Post: "Cheney and his counsel would struggle for months to quash the legal insurgency. By the time President Bush became aware of it, his No. 2 had stoked dissent into flat-out rebellion. The president would face a dilemma, and the presidency itself a historic test. Cheney would come close to leading them off a cliff, man and office both."

Cellphones like alcohol when mixed with driving


The Canadian Press

September 14, 2008 at 1:24 PM EDT

TORONTO — Ontario's doctors are the latest to weigh in on the risks of chatting on a cellphone while driving, saying it significantly increases the danger of accidents.

Mobile phone use effects a driver's cognitive function, visual concentration, speed of processing information and reaction time, says the Ontario Medical Association.

The group compiled studies from around the world pointing to the dangers in a bid to get action from the Ontario government.


Informant: Martin Weatherall


Independent Media Source

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