Saturday, December 29, 2007

Project Censored: Top 25 Censored Stories of the Year

Go to Project Censored for links, footnotes, and articles

# 25 Who Will Profit from Native Energy?
# 24 Media Misquotes Threat From Iran’s President
# 23 Feinstein’s Conflict of Interest in Iraq
# 22 North Invades Mexico
# 21 US Seeks WTO Immunity for Illegal Farm Payments
# 20 Terror Act Against Animal Activists
# 19 People’s Movement Challenges Neoliberal Agenda
# 18 Mexico’s Stolen Election
# 17 Drinking Water Contaminated by Military and Corporations
# 16 No Hard Evidence Connecting Bin Laden to 9/11
# 15 Toxic Exposure Can Be Transmitted to Future Generations on “Second Genetic Code”
# 14 Impunity for US War Criminals
# 13 Immigrant Roundups to Gain Cheap Labor for US Corporate Giants
# 12 Another Massacre in Haiti by UN Troops
# 11 The Scam of “Reconstruction” in Afghanistan
# 10 Vulture Funds Threaten Poor Nations’ Debt Relief
# 9 Privatization of America’s Infrastructure
# 8 KIA: The US Neoliberal Invasion of India
# 7 Behind Blackwater Inc.
# 6 Operation FALCON Raids
# 5 Human Traffic Builds US Embassy in Iraq
# 4 Frenzy of Increasingly Destructive Trade Agreements
# 3 AFRICOM: US Military Control of Africa’s Resources
# 2 Bush Moves Toward Martial Law
# 1 No Habeas Corpus for “Any Person”

Pakistani Gov't Reveals How Benazir Was Killed

Go to IBNlive.com original

New Delhi: Mystery shrouds the death of former Pakistan prime minister Benazir Bhutto. In an explosive revelation, Pakistan's Interior Minister Hamid Nawaz on Friday said that Bhutto did not die of bullet wounds.

Nawaz said that Bhutto died from a head injury. At least seven doctors from the Rawalpindi General Hospital – where the leader was rushed immediately after the attack – say there were no bullet marks on Bhutto's body.

more...

Waterproofing Sprays Still Not Studied by Feds

Go to SanFran Chronicle original

The Consumer Product Safety Commission is unnecessarily leaving the American public at risk through its failure to properly investigate a long-running series of lung injuries tied to widely available waterproofing sprays, public health officials from several states say.

more...

IRAQ: Saddam Provided More Food Than the U.S.

Go to IPS News original

BAQUBA, Dec 27 (IPS) - The Iraqi government announcement that monthly food rations will be cut by half has left many Iraqis asking how they can survive.

more...

2007 a Year of Weather Records in US



Go to CommonDreams.org reprint

WASHINGTON - When the calendar turned to 2007, the heat went on and the weather just got weirder. January was the warmest first month on record worldwide - 1.53 degrees above normal. It was the first time since record-keeping began in 1880 that the globe’s average temperature has been so far above the norm for any month of the year.

And as 2007 drew to a close, it was also shaping up to be the hottest year on record in the Northern Hemisphere.

more...

Soaring Oil Bills Hurt Africa’s economies

Go to Financial Times original

When prices rise, it is the poor who suffer most. This year’s surge in the oil price towards $100 a barrel has been no exception: it is a concern for rich countries but its greatest threat is to the poorest.

The oil shocks of the 1970s were one of the roots of the developing-country debt crisis of the 1980s. Fatih Birol, chief economist of the International Energy Agency, argues that as soaring oil import bills put pressure on fragile economies, there is a danger the pattern will be repeated.

He calculates that the additional cost of oil imports for his sample of 13 countries since 2004 is $10.6bn: equal to 3 per cent of their gross domestic product over that period. “It is a worrying trend,” he said.

more...

Global Warming & Cali's 21st Century Landscape

Go to Yahoo original

LOS ANGELES - California is defined by its scenery, from the mountains that enchanted John Muir to the wine country and beaches that define its culture around the world. Where celebrities, surfers and wannabes mingle on Malibu's world-famous beaches, there may be only sea walls defending fading mansions from the encroaching Pacific. In Northern California, tourists could have to drive farther north or to the cool edge of the Pacific to find what is left of the region's signature wine country.

Abandoned ski lifts might dangle above snowless trails more suitable for mountain biking even during much of the winter. In the deserts, Joshua trees that once extended their tangled, shaggy arms into the sky by the thousands may have all but disappeared.

more...

Friday, December 28, 2007

Republican Chair Brags of Vote 'Caging' Successes

Go to Brad's Blog original

"To date, the Kansas GOP has identified and caged more voters in the last 11 months than the previous two years!," brags Kansas GOP chairman Kris Kobach in his end-of-year letter.

more...

Inside Story: Israeli Settlements (12/25/07) Pt. 1

Inside Story: Israeli Settlements (12/25/07) Pt. 2

LAKOTA Secession: No Longer Tolerating Broken Promises

Go to American Chronicle original

The struggle is for the freedom of a people who have been systematically slaughtered, subjugated, and extorted since America’s beginnings. They are now declaring that they will take it no longer. The Lakota hit rock bottom, and are coming up fighting.

more...

Thursday, December 27, 2007

Breaking: Pakistani Opposition Party to Boycott Elections

Go to New York Times original

RAWALPINDI, Pakistan (AP) -- Pakistani opposition leader Nawaz Sharif announced Thursday his party was boycotting next month's elections following the assassination of Benazir Bhutto. He demanded that President Pervez Musharraf resign immediately.

more...

Wal-Mart's 2007

Go to WalMartWatch.com original

A look back at the year that was. 2007 was a tough year for Wal-Mart: sales were at their lowest in more than a quarter century, multiple public relations blunders left the company reeling and financial analysts began wondering if Wal-Mart’s era is over. A round-up of the Wal-Mart news from 2007.

more...

MediaMatters.org: Misinfo of the Year

Go to MediaMatters.org original

It's still not just Imus. Media Matters for America usually takes the opportunity at the end of the year to name a Misinformer of the Year, an individual or media entity who in that year has made a noteworthy "contribution" to the advancement of conservative misinformation.

more...

Breaking: U.S. Special Forces to Expand Presence in Pakistan

Democracy Now.org-In other news on Pakistan, the Washington Post reports U.S. Special Forces are expected to vastly expand their presence in Pakistan beginning in early 2008. The U.S. troops will reportedly take part in an effort to train and support Pakistani counter-insurgency forces and clandestine counterterrorism units. While the U.S. expands its presence in Pakistan, questions are being raised over how Pakistan has spent five billion dollars in U.S. aid sent since the Sept. 11 attacks. According to the New York Times, the money was supposed to have been spent to fight Al Qaeda and the Taliban. But now U.S. officials are admitting that funds were diverted to help finance weapons systems designed to counter India, another U.S. ally

Profile: Benazir Bhutto

Go to Al Jazeera original

Upon ending eight years of self-imposed exile Benzair Bhutto described herself as "emotionally overwhelmed" as hundreds of thousands of supporters greeted her in Karachi, the stronghold of her Pakistan's People's Party.

When Musharraf imposed emergency rule, few apparent curbs were immediately placed on Bhutto's movements, drawing intense scrutiny on their relationship.

But under the state of emergency, she denounced Musharraf's crackdown of the media and judiciary and vowed not to work with him, first demanding he step down as chief of army and then as president.

On December 27, a suicide bomber killed her and at least a dozen others as she campaigned for election in January.

more...

Bhutto Assassinated



more...

Wednesday, December 26, 2007

Homeland Insecurity

Go to NBC-San Diego original

The Homeland Security Dept.'s Overreliance On Outside Contractors And Insufficient Management Of Them Could Leave The U.S. Vulnerable.

more...

The FCC’s Christmas Gift to Big Media

Go to Amy Goodman's original

On Dec. 18, the five commissioners of the Federal Communications Commission met in Washington, D.C., and, by a 3 to 2 vote, passed new regulations that would allow more media consolidation. This, despite the U.S. public’s increasing concern over the nation’s media being controlled by a few giant corporations.

more...

Monday, December 24, 2007

Jewish immigration to Israel at lowest in 20 years

Go to Yahoo original

Jewish immigration to Israel continued to slide in 2007 with the number of newcomers at just 19,700, the lowest level in 20 years, according to figures published on Monday.

more...

Sunday, December 23, 2007

Christmas Sermon: Origins of Christmas Part 3 (of 3)

Christmas Sermon: Origins of Christmas Part 2 (of 3)

Christmas Sermon: Origins of Christmas Part 1 (of 3)

Amy Goodman: The Israel Lobby & U.S. Foreign Policy



blogger's note: both Amy Goodman and this blogger are proud and practicing Jews that wholeheartedly support the existence of the state of Israel.

Mitt Romney’s Very Real Pursuit of Tyrannical Power

Go to Glenn Greenwald's original

Charlie Savage of The Boston Globe submitted to the leading presidential candidates a questionnaire asking their views on 12 key questions regarding executive power. These are just some of the powers which Romney — and, among the respondents, Romney alone — claimed the President possesses, either by explicitly claiming them or refusing to repudiate them when asked directly:

* to eavesdrop on Americans with no warrants, even if doing so is in violation of Congressional law (Question 1);

* to attack Iran without Congressional authorization, even in the absence of an imminent threat (Question 2);

* to disregard a congressional statute limiting the deployment of troops (Question 3);

* to issue a signing statement reserving a constitutional right to bypass laws enacted by Congress (Question 4);

* to disregard international human rights treaties that the US Senate has ratified where said (Question 8 )

more...

Thursday, December 20, 2007

No Proof Airport Security Makes Flying Safer

Go to Yahoo/Reuters Original

WASHINGTON (Reuters) - Airport security lines can annoy passengers, but there is no evidence that they make flying any safer, U.S. researchers reported on Thursday.
A team at the Harvard School of Public Health could not find any studies showing whether the time-consuming process of X-raying carry-on luggage prevents hijackings or attacks.

[more...]

Wednesday, December 5, 2007

Flu Shots and Brain Degeneration

Chimps Smarter Than College Students

Go to AHN original

New York, NY (AHN) - In a test of short-term memory, young chimpanzees have been proven to be better than college students. Japanese researchers pitted young chimps against college students in a numerical skills challenge and the animals won hands down.

[more...]

Monday, December 3, 2007

Celebrity Scab: Ellen DeGeneres


Go To The Independent Original



The Hollywood writers' strike has identified its first celebrity scab. Ellen DeGeneres, the comedian and television host, has found she is no longer welcome on the streets of New York because of her decision to keep recording – and writing – her daytime chat show.

After several days of public drubbing by her union – the Writers Guild of America – DeGeneres has announced she won't be taping her show in New York next week as planned, but will stay in Los Angeles and record in the entertainment-industry suburb of Burbank, where the union is less militant and has yet to voice any objection.

[more...]

US: Iran Ended Nuke Program in 2003

Go to Yahoo.com original

WASHINGTON (Reuters) - A new U.S. intelligence report says Iran halted its nuclear weapons program in 2003 and it remains on hold, contradicting the Bush administration's earlier assertion that Tehran was intent on developing a bomb.

[more...]

Wednesday, November 28, 2007

"Patriot Act Lite" Sneaking Through Congress

Go To CommonDrems.org Original

Civil libertarians are worried that a little-known anti-terrorism bill now making its way through the U.S. Congress with virtually no debate could be planting the seeds of another USA Patriot Act. The Violent Radicalisation and Homegrown Terrorism Prevention Act, co-authored by the former chair of the House of Representatives Intelligence Committee, Jane Harmon, a California Democrat, passed the House by an overwhelming 400-6 vote last month, and will soon be considered by the Senate.

more...

Sunday, November 18, 2007

Background on Mitt Romney's Mormon Religion

Former Massachusetts Governor and now Republican Presidential candidate, Mitt Romney, shares these beliefs:

Tuesday, November 13, 2007

Income Gap Among Black, White Families Up

Go To NY Times original

WASHINGTON (AP) -- Decades after the civil rights movement, the income gap between black and white families has grown, says a new study. One reason for the growing disparity: Incomes among black men have actually declined in the past three decades, when adjusted for inflation.

[more]...

Monday, November 5, 2007

10 Steps To Close Down an Open Society by Naomi Wolf

Go To the Huffington Post original
1. Invoke a terrifying internal and external enemy
2. Create a gulag (secret prison)
3. Develop a thug caste (exclusive group)
4. Set up an internal surveillance system
5. Harass citizens' groups
6. Engage in arbitrary detention and release
7. Target key individuals
8. Control the press
9. Dissent equals treason
10. Suspend the rule of law

[more]...

Monday, October 15, 2007

What We Learn Today...

Mitt Romney says his lawyers will decide whether we go to War.

...What We Used to Learn

"How a Bill Becomes a Law"

Former Phone Chief Says Spy Agency Sought Surveillance Help Before 9/11

Go to New York Times original

The phone company Qwest Communications refused a proposal from the National Security Agency that the company’s lawyers considered illegal in February 2001, nearly seven months before the terrorist attacks on Sept. 11, the former head of the company contends in newly unsealed court filings. [more]

Sunday, October 14, 2007

Police Brutality of the Day-10/14

Wash. Post: NSA Punished Telecom for not Spying on Americans

Go to Washington Post original

A former Qwest Communications International executive, appealing a conviction for insider trading, has alleged that the government withdrew opportunities for contracts worth hundreds of millions of dollars after Qwest refused to participate in an unidentified National Security Agency program that the company thought might be illegal. [more]

Ann Coulter and Justice Antonin Scalia: Jews Are Safer with Christians in Charge

Commentary by Thom Hartmann via CommonDreams.org

The National Jewish Democratic Council (NJDC) called on media to stop inviting Ann Coulter as a guest commentator and strongly condemned her comments that Jews should be “perfected” by accepting the New Testament and that America would be better off if Judaism were “thrown away” and all Americans were Christian. [more]

Ann Coulter: Jews Need to be "Perfected"

US Income Gap Widens, Richest Share Hits Record

The CommonDreams.org Reuters reprinted original

Washington - The gap between America’s richest and poorest is at its widest in at least 25 years, with the wealthiest taking home a record share of the nation’s income that exceeds even the previous high in 2000.

According to recent data from the Internal Revenue Service, the richest 1 percent of Americans earned 21.2 percent of all U.S. income earned in 2005. That is a significant increase from 2004 when the top 1 percent earned 19 percent of the nation’s income. [more]...

Thursday, October 11, 2007

Canadian Mint Sues Toronto, Claims to Own the Word "Cent"

Go to Canada.com original

The mint is demanding the city pay $47,680 for using a picture of the “tails” side of a Canadian penny in its brochures, banners and advertisements for the campaign, aimed at persuading Ottawa to set aside one cent of every six collected under the goods and services tax (GST) for municipalities. The mint is also seeking compensation for the city’s use of the phrase “one cent” in the campaign. [more]...

Robert Reich: Is Capitalism Always Good for Democracy?

Police Brutality of the Day-10/11

Congress to Pass Bill on Armenian Genocide

The Jerusalem Post Original

The US House of Representatives Foreign Affairs Committee is expected to approve a bipartisan bill on Wednesday that calls on the US to recognize the World War I massacres of Armenians as genocide. [more]

The Forgotten Holocaust-Turkey's Armenian Genocide

Tuesday, October 9, 2007

Is LASIK safe?

Gore Vidal on the Media

Boston Globe: Budweiser Uses Genetically Altered Rice in Beer

Original Boston Globe article

Rice used by Anheuser-Busch Cos. to brew Budweiser beer is tainted with an experimental, genetically engineered rice strain, according to an analysis released yesterday by the environmental organization Greenpeace. Three of four samples of unprocessed rice from the beer maker’s mill in Arkansas showed the presence of the strain, Bayer LL601, Greenpeace said.

Doug Muhleman, Anheuser-Busch’s vice president of brewing, acknowledged in a prepared statement that US-grown long-grained rice “may have micro levels” of a genetically engineered protein called Liberty Link, but added that the protein is “substantially removed or destroyed” during the brewing of beer sold domestically.

The St. Louis company said the rice strain “is fully approved” by federal regulators, who deemed it “perfectly safe for human consumption.”

Muhleman said Greenpeace’s “false and defamatory” allegations came as retaliation for the company’s spurning Greenpeace’s call to boycott US farmers.

“We stand in support of US farmers, who are partners with us in the quality of our products,” he said in a statement. “Greenpeace recently asked us to join their advocacy campaign on genetically modified crops. We refused their calls to boycott US farmers, and they are now retaliating.”

In its marketing materials, Anheuser-Busch highlights such “all-natural” ingredients as barley malt, hops, water, and yeast in Budweiser, one of the world’s top-selling beers. The company says it adds rice to give Budweiser its crisp taste, clarity, and brilliance.

Greenpeace’s Doreen Stabinsky, however, said US consumers have a right to know that genetically modified rice is used to create their beer. To that end, the group has cobbled together an off-color YouTube video, “Wassup With Your Beer?” The one-minute, 16-second video closes with a display advertisement reminiscent of a Budweiser commercial, except that it replaces the beer’s foam with a mound of rice, and notes in capital letters that the beer is made with genetically engineered rice.

Stabinsky called the Internet campaign “a popular culture way” to alert Budweiser drinkers to an unknown fact.

Jason Alström, founder of the Boston-based website BeerAdvocate.com, predicted that a “small, vocal minority” would “make a fuss” if details about genetically modified ingredients were widely publicized.

In part, that’s because that genetically engineered crops, including this rice, can generate strong emotions. Critics point to genetically engineered rice grown by Bayer CropScience, a biotech company that from 1999 to 2001 unintentionally tainted two commercial varieties of long-grain rice.

“Mostly people that don’t drink Budweiser, yet are against g-e foods,” Alström said in an e-mail. “As for your typical Bud drinker, I doubt they would care or even know what g-e food actually is.”

© 2007 The Boston Globe

Monday, October 8, 2007

Stephen Colbert: Naomi Wolf on Fascism in America

Che Guevara's pt. 1

40 years after his death, here's his life...

Che Guevara's pt. 2

40 years after his death, here's his life...

Che Guevara's pt. 3

40 years after his death, here's his life...

CNN: American Hi-Tech Jobs vs. Guest Workers