Friday, February 24, 2006

So... umm... who's the real Port Authority? "The Bilderberg Group, The Trilateral Commission, The CFR, The Chinese..." Who??? (sigh)

CBS News

Bush Says Ports Deal Not a Security Threat

WASHINGTON, Feb. 23, 2006

(AP) President Bush on Thursday sought to calm an uproar over an Arab company taking over operations at six major American ports, saying "people don't need to worry about security."

Under a secretive agreement with the administration, a company in the United Arab Emirates promised to cooperate with U.S. investigations as a condition of its takeover of operations at six major American ports, according to documents obtained by The Associated Press.

The U.S. government chose not to impose other, routine restrictions.

"The more people learn about the transaction," Bush said, "the more they'll be comforted that the ports will be secure." He spoke to reporters at the end of a Cabinet meeting.

In approving the $6.8 billion purchase, the administration chose not to require state-owned Dubai Ports World to keep copies of its business records on U.S. soil, where they would be subject to orders by American courts. It also did not require the company to designate an American citizen to accommodate requests by the government.

Outside legal experts said such obligations are routinely attached to U.S. approvals of foreign sales in other industries.



[Ed note: for the purposes of accurately reflecting the value of this article, the text that is highlighted in bold is the same as on the original article, and provides links to more articles and sources. Please go to the link at the bottom to see the original and verify the sourcing.]

The Port Sell-Out and the Dismantling of America

Globalists swallowing US sovereignty through front countries like UAE but China threat ignored

Prison | February 23 2006
By Alex Jones & Paul Joseph Watson


America Destroyed by Design Chinese buy-out US's only deep-water port

Bush threatens veto in ports row

Governors Threaten to Block Port Deal

Bush Shrugs Off Objections to Port Deal

Not Surprisingly W has ties to Arab firm


U.S. Announces Intent to Negotiate FTAs with UAE and Oman

Jimmy Carter supports Bush White House on ports

UAE firm would control U.S. military shipments

Join and see America Destroyed by Design online Now!

It is a stated goal of the Bilderberg Group, the Trilateral Commission and the CFR to promote what they call 'interdependence' and to lobby governments to sell off key infrastructure such as roads, lakes, ports, and highways to international corporations so that corporations can grow to be bigger in size than government.

44 of the world's 100 biggest economies are not countries, they are corporations. There is no vote, there is no access to shareholder or CEO records. These corporations take over governmental functions by paying off politicians to hand over assets and then declare there to be no means of oversight of their activities.

In 1997 the Communist Chinese government took over the Long Beach Naval Weapons Ship Yard , the only major deep water port that can take large ships on the west coast. In 2000, the Communist Chinese, Hutchinson Whampoa which is run by the PLA, took over the Panama Canal and has stationed between 15,000 and 30,000 troops at the facility.

May we remind our readers that top Chinese generals continue to threaten nuclear attacks on America. There is absolutely no mention of the Chinese takeover of these facilities amidst the media merry-go-round of the UAE ports debate and the same people that now criticize the UAE deal, like Chuckie Schumer, supported the ports sell-out to the Communist Chinese under Bill Clinton.

Alex Jones' first documentary film America: Destroyed By Design, made in 1997, warned Americans that the sell-out to the Chinese was the first step on the road to the sacking of the American economy and pulling the plug on key US infrastructure.

Why are people so concerned about the United Arab Emirates when the fastest growing military on the planet and a superpower that continually threatens to annihilate the US has been metaphorically handed the keys to the kingdom and is encircling the country?

During the Chinese sell-out it was Republican politicians that would bash Bill Clinton for making the deal yet it was yesterday's Republicans and today's Neo-Cons who were affiliated with the companies making millions from the transfer. This is why we are less than confident that Democrats have any real agenda to stop the UAE deal.

Just as now claims of 'Islamophobia' are raised to attack critics of the UAE deal, in 1997 and 2000 it was 'Asianphobia'. This has nothing to do with race, it is a matter of national sovereignty. If American corporations tried to buy up key Chinese infrastructure they would be firmly rebuffed.

As a country we are not just being robbed of our ability to create wealth, we are being robbed of our infrastructure, our land and our capacity to work the land. Your currency, your future and your sovereignty is systematically being dismantled, looted and sold to the highest bidder. The taxpayer pays for and builds the infrastructure only for foreign lobbyists to pay off corrupt politicians who 'lease' the infrastructure or outright sell it to the foreign lobbyists for 50, 60, 70 years.

The continued weakness of the dollar allows foreign entities to step in and buy more and more infrastructure while American families work three or four jobs just to get by.

The United Arab Emirates is a British holding and the British empire is simply re-shuffling some of its marbles. Claims that the UAE has links to terrorism are a distraction. The fact is that the UAE is in the pocket of the Globalists and is simply a front for the Internationalists to swallow up more of American sovereignty.

What we have is an 'oligopoly'. What is an oligopoly? It is where, similar to the Italian mafia, cartels and different corporate owners meet to affect the same thing as a monopoly. They decide which countries will control which interests and that is how the New World Order works.


VIDEO: America Destroyed by Design

A Segment from Alex Jones' Newest Documentary

Chinese Buy-Out of Long Beach Naval Weapons Ship Yard

View Quicktime

View Windows Media



What are Bilderberg Conferences all about?

TG 08Feb00 - The Bilderberg Secretariat proclaims the conferences to be '...private in order to encourage frank and open discussion'. Frank and open discussion is a good thing in any forum but when those doing the discussing are some of the very most powerful financiers and media tycoons in the world it begs the question: If what they discuss is for the good of ordinary people why not publicise it! Isn't it a perverted use of the word 'open' when no-one can find out what they're saying?

Is Bilderberg a secret conspiracy?

When such rich and powerful people meet up in secret, with military intelligence managing their security, with hardly a whisper escaping of what goes on inside, people are right to be suspicious. But the true power of Bilderberg comes from the fact that participants are in a bubble, sealed off from reality and the devastating implications on the ground of the black-science economic solutions on the table.

No, it's not a 'conspiracy'. The world's leading financiers and foreign policy strategists don't get together at Bilderberg to draw up their 'secret plans for the future'. It's subtler than that. These meetings create an artificial 'consensus' in an attempt to spellbind visiting politicians and and other men of influence. Blair has fallen for this hook, line and sinker. It's about reinforcing - often to the very people who are on the edge of condemning Globalisation - the illusion that Globalisation is 'good', 'popular' and that it's inevitable.

Bilderberg is an extremely influential lobbying group. That's not to say though that the organisers don't have a hidden agenda, they do, namely accumulation of wealth and power into their own hands whilst explaining to the participants that globalisation is for the good of all. It is also a very good forum for 'interviewing' potential future political figures such as Clinton (1991) and Blair (1993). [see above for more on this]

The ideology put forward at the Bilderberg conferences is that what's good for banking and big business is good for the mere mortals of the world. Silently banished are the critical voices, those that might point out that debt is spiralling out of control, that wealth is being sucked away from ordinary people and into the hands of the faceless corporate institutions, that millions are dying as a direct result of the global heavyweight Rockefeller/Rothschild economic strategies.

When looking at one of the (partially reliable) participant lists it should be remembered that quite a number of participants are invited in an attempt to get them on-board the globalisation project. These are carefully selected people of influence, who have been openly critical of globalisation. Examples are Jonathan Porritt (Bilderberg 1999) and Will Hutton (Bilderberg 1997) but there are many others. Most of these kinds of participants are happy to speak about the conference afterwards, and may even be refreshingly critical.

The Bilderberg organisers are accepted by those 'in the know' as the prophets of Capitalism. Will Hutton, deputy Editor of The Observer newspaper in London and left-leaning Economist, described private clubs of the elite as masterminded by 'The High Priests of Globalisation'. The ecclesiastical allusion is not accidental. The Bilderberg high-priests are a force against good, out to wipe morality from the earth. For the organisers Bilderberg Conferences are an annual ideological assault by the world's most power-hungry people. Not content with owning unimaginable amounts of money and property they want to use that wealth to acquire even more power for themselves. Power is the most dangerous and addictive drugs known to man. Will the craving be satisfied when a handful of men own and control everything on earth?

And just like the Nazi party in the 1930's the global Capitalist Elite are rising in power by peaceful means. There are some very uncomfortable and unexplained connections between Bilderberg and the Nazis through the Conference's founder Prince Bernhard.

These crown princes of capital use violence at the sharp end - the destruction of dissent - the repossession of homes men and women have worked a lifetime for - needless deaths from starvation and geopolitical machinations - this violence is notable by its absence from the annual meetings.

One can't help but wonder, when the Bilderberg organisers, Rothschild, Rockefeller, Kissinger and the rest have completed their project of enclosing all global goods and services into their own hands, enclosing too the media to stop people freely discussing what they are up to. What then?? What happens when the men who would be gods turn out to be the global devils?

Who is behind Bilderberg?

Bilderberg is run by a Steering Group - if you're wondering who's responsible for so much of the capital-friendly and dissent-crushing law-making, poverty and general misery in the world this may be the place to look. Up-to-date lists are available from the Bilderberg Secretariat. This is the closest approximation to a shadow transatlantic government. And this is another hidden agenda at Bilderberg.

There may be other groups pulling the strings behind even the Steering Group possibly even high degree occult groups such as The Masons or Illuminati! [eg.] - but that is 'conspiracy theory', Bilderberg is not.

There must certainly be some sociopathic minds behind Bilderberg since they go to so much trouble to promote policies that lead to exploitation, inequality and despair. These individuals seem oddly switched off from the suffering they are clearly causing. Surely only pernicious people would want to control the ideology of the world's mainstream press, and undermine natural political discourse. Public opinion and democratic institutions are a threat when you want to own the world.

The perverse objective of the Bilderberg Steering Group is to dress totalitarian ideology up to appear rational and push it out, unattributable, for mass consumption under Chatham House rules. Meanwhile, outside the Bilder-bubble, 'god-is-money' globalisation is the new religion. The greedy are given a pat on the back as they plunder both the earth and do their best to destroy the human spirit.


"Hi, I'm Tony Gosling, this website's editor."

Counterpunch Magazine

Weekend Edition
February 11/12, 2006

Forget Iran, Americans Should be Hysterical About This

Nuking the Economy


Last week the Bureau of Labor Statistics re-benchmarked the payroll jobs data back to 2000. Thanks to Charles McMillion of MBG Information Services, I have the adjusted data from January 2001 through January 2006. If you are worried about terrorists, you don’t know what worry is.

Job growth over the last five years is the weakest on record. The US economy came up more than 7 million jobs short of keeping up with population growth. That’s one good reason for controlling immigration. An economy that cannot keep up with population growth should not be boosting population with heavy rates of legal and illegal immigration.

Over the past five years the US economy experienced a net job loss in goods producing activities. The entire job growth was in service-providing activities--primarily credit intermediation, health care and social assistance, waiters, waitresses and bartenders, and state and local government.

US manufacturing lost 2.9 million jobs, almost 17% of the manufacturing work force. The wipeout is across the board. Not a single manufacturing payroll classification created a single new job.

The declines in some manufacturing sectors have more in common with a country undergoing saturation bombing during war than with a super-economy that is “the envy of the world.” Communications equipment lost 43% of its workforce. Semiconductors and electronic components lost 37% of its workforce. The workforce in computers and electronic products declined 30%. Electrical equipment and appliances lost 25% of its employees. The workforce in motor vehicles and parts declined 12%. Furniture and related products lost 17% of its jobs. Apparel manufacturers lost almost half of the work force. Employment in textile mills declined 43%. Paper and paper products lost one-fifth of its jobs. The work force in plastics and rubber products declined by 15%. Even manufacturers of beverages and tobacco products experienced a 7% shrinkage in jobs.

The knowledge jobs that were supposed to take the place of lost manufacturing jobs in the globalized “new economy” never appeared. The information sector lost 17% of its jobs, with the telecommunications work force declining by 25%. Even wholesale and retail trade lost jobs. Despite massive new accounting burdens imposed by Sarbanes-Oxley, accounting and bookkeeping employment shrank by 4%. Computer systems design and related lost 9% of its jobs. Today there are 209,000 fewer managerial and supervisory jobs than 5 years ago.

In five years the US economy only created 70,000 jobs in architecture and engineering, many of which are clerical. Little wonder engineering enrollments are shrinking. There are no jobs for graduates. The talk about engineering shortages is absolute ignorance. There are several hundred thousand American engineers who are unemployed and have been for years. No student wants a degree that is nothing but a ticket to a soup line. Many engineers have written to me that they cannot even get Wal-Mart jobs because their education makes them over-qualified.

Offshore outsourcing and offshore production have left the US awash with unemployment among the highly educated. The low measured rate of unemployment does not include discouraged workers. Labor arbitrage has made the unemployment rate less and less a meaningful indicator. In the past unemployment resulted mainly from turnover in the labor force and recession. Recoveries pulled people back into jobs.

Unemployment benefits were intended to help people over the down time in the cycle when workers were laid off. Today the unemployment is permanent as entire occupations and industries are wiped out by labor arbitrage as corporations replace their American employees with foreign ones.

Economists who look beyond political press releases estimate the US unemployment rate to be between 7% and 8.5%. There are now hundreds of thousands of Americans who will never recover their investment in their university education.

Unless the BLS is falsifying the data or businesses are reporting the opposite of the facts, the US is experiencing a job depression. Most economists refuse to acknowledge the facts, because they endorsed globalization. It was a win-win situation, they said.

They were wrong.

At a time when America desperately needs the voices of educated people as a counterweight to the disinformation that emanates from the Bush administration and its supporters, economists have discredited themselves. This is especially true for “free market economists” who foolishly assumed that international labor arbitrage was an example of free trade that was benefitting Americans. Where is the benefit when employment in US export industries and import-competitive industries is shrinking? After decades of struggle to regain credibility, free market economics is on the verge of another wipeout.

No sane economist can possibly maintain that a deplorable record of merely 1,054,000 net new private sector jobs over five years is an indication of a healthy economy. The total number of private sector jobs created over the five year period is 500,000 jobs less than one year’s legal and illegal immigration! (In a December 2005 Center for Immigration Studies report based on the Census Bureau’s March 2005 Current Population Survey, Steven Camarota writes that there were 7,9 million new immigrants between January 2000 and March 2005.)

The economics profession has failed America. It touts a meaningless number while joblessness soars. Lazy journalists at the New York Times simply rewrite the Bush administration’s press releases.

On February 10 the Commerce Department released a record US trade deficit in goods and services for 2005--$726 billion. The US deficit in Advanced Technology Products reached a new high. Offshore production for home markets and jobs outsourcing has made the US highly dependent on foreign provided goods and services, while simultaneously reducing the export capability of the US economy. It is possible that there might be no exchange rate at which the US can balance its trade.

Polls indicate that the Bush administration is succeeding in whipping up fear and hysteria about Iran. The secretary of defense is promising Americans decades-long war. Is death in battle Bush’s solution to the job depression? Will Asians finance a decades-long war for a bankrupt country?

Paul Craig Roberts was Assistant Secretary of the Treasury in the Reagan administration. He was Associate Editor of the Wall Street Journal editorial page and Contributing Editor of National Review. He is coauthor of The Tyranny of Good Intentions. He can be reached at:


"Qui bono?"

"Who profits?"

Peace by peace...



Black Krishna Brand

Philosophy -

Music -


Thursday, February 23, 2006

EMAIL TRANSCRIPT - Indigesting The Faux Liberal Media: "see how you felt when you finished reading it, shitty eh?"

The margins of political debate are extremely narrow, and it's hard to convince people they don't know what's going on when they know so much awful half-knowledge.

This has always been the case to some degree, but with today's pace of information overload most news is simply sold as "what went wrong?" and "here's some human interest pablum".

As long as you watch a few tragedies and then get cheered up by celebrities, you're informed.

You're in the loop.

Context is not important, history is irrelevant, and heroes are virtually non-existent.


Heroes defend people from power, speak truth to power, and mobilize people against the threat of power.

They always have been.

Unfortunately, evil right-wing power ensured that President Reagan ripped up The Fairness Doctrine in the 1980's and wiped his ass with it, effectively ending rules guaranteeing equal TV-time for candidates of different political parties, and guaranteeing any candidate who wants coverage has to kiss up to the corporate media.

Reagan also allowed the consolidation of the media to an unprecedented degree, ensuring that the media, or the "Fourth Estate", that is supposed to protect us in case the Presidency, Congress and Supreme Court fails, is instead even more powerful than they are, and working even more powerfully to promote a corporate agenda in tandem with corrupt politician.

In 1980 over 50 companies owned the mainstream media.

Now it's 5.

5 corporations control 95% of nightly U.S. news programming.

2003 annual revenues:
Comcast: 18.3 Billion
Viacom: 26.6 Billion
Time Warner: 39.6 Billion
GE 134.2 Billion
Vivendi: 30.1 Billion
News Corp: 17.5 Billion
Bertelsmann: 19.8 Billion

In North America- Approximate number of:
Newspapers: 1800
Magazines: 1100
Radio Stations: 11,000
TV Stations: 2000
Book Publishers: 3000

Number of companies listed as owning a controlling interest in the above Media:
In 1984 – (50)
1987 – (26)
1996- (10)
2002- (6)


If you disagree or rock the boat, you get no face-time.

Just ask black Congresswoman Maxine Waters, who in 1996 fought to publicize the proven news story of the CIA introducing crack to poor blacks in Los Angeles in the 1980's (when cocaine was previously unaffordable and thus almost unheard of), in order to fund Nicaraguan rebels against their democratically elected socialist government.

(10 mins) WATCH -

Or ask her about leading a plane trip to Africa to catch up with Haitian President Jean-Bertrand Aristide after he was deposed in 2004 in a U.S.-backed coup.

Or ask black Congresswoman Cynthia McKinney, star of the new documentary "American Blackout" about the stolen 2000 and 2004 elections that won an award at the Sundance Film Festival, and who recently grilled Donald Rumsfeld on C-SPAN about 9/11, the Dyncorp domestic sex-trade, the Pentagon missing trillions of dollars...

(8 mins) WATCH -

Or watch Fahrenheit 9/11, and remember all the black Congresspeople protesting voter fraud in the 2000 election, and being shot-down one-by-one by should-be President Al Gore presiding over a hearing on the issue that was completely unreported by the media. Neither Gore nor a single Senator would challenge the media on this issue, and with good reason.

(2 hrs) WATCH -

Gore was already being skewered by the "liberal media" who uniformly decided that "conservative" George Bush had won despite the result being decided by a "conservative" Supreme Court on a 5-4 "One-time-only and this has no value in setting a precedent because Sweet Jesus it is a total violation of the law!" decision, and that any efforts to fight the results were bad sportsmanship.

With the "conservative" calls to "accept" the results growing louder and louder and louder in unison in the "liberal media", that was that.

The reason Reagan is important is that he was the free-spending puppet-President who destroyed the checks and balances ensuring a reasonably diverse and healthy media, an institution coming off the heady investigative journalism highs of the 1970's, with the end of the Vietnam War and impeachment of President Nixon.

Reagan was the predecessor of the current free-spending puppet-president, George Bush, who's really been put in power by, as NY Times columnist Paul Krugman put it, "a plan started over 30 years ago by the malefactors of great wealth and the religious right". They are currently fulfilling ambitions initiated by the crushing 1964 defeat of Presidential nominee Barry Goldwater, who carried only 6 states and 36% of the vote running for a divided Republican Party.

They are divided no longer.

"If you tell a lie big enough and keep repeating it, people will eventually come to believe it."

"The lie can be maintained only for such time as the State can shield the people from the political, economic and/or military consequences of the lie. It thus becomes vitally important for the State to use all of its powers to repress dissent, for the truth is the mortal enemy of the lie, and thus by extension, the truth is the greatest enemy of the State."

"The most brilliant propagandist technique will yield no success unless one fundamental principle is borne in mind constantly - it must confine itself to a few points and repeat them over and over."

"Think of the press as a great keyboard on which the government can play."

"What you want in a media system is ostensible diversity that conceals an actual uniformity."

"What you want in a media system is ostensible diversity that conceals an actual uniformity."

"What you want in a media system is ostensible diversity that conceals an actual uniformity."

- Joseph Goebbels, Nazi Minister of Propaganda

You know, they say it's not how you start something, it's how you finish.

A friend who's sympathetic to my goals sent me the article below, and suggested that their preferred and traditionally "liberal" paper was coming around, and finally beginning to tell the truth about the Bush Administration.

The article's not bad, though it mostly recycles old news to create a new story about how hard it is to criticize the Bush Administration.

They also use a pessimistic "expert" from an obscure quarterly publication (Dissent Magazine) to avoid citing any daily alternative news sources who might be in direct competition on a daily basis with their daily newspaper.

So, for the casual reader not too familiar with politics, one who's already forgetten about the 15 million people worldwide who protested before the start of the War in Iraq in 2003; the 50 million Americans who voted for John Kerry in 2004; the millions of Americans giving George W. Bush a 36% approval rating in 2006; and the millions of ordinary people spending their time as activists and alternative news sources who are working tirelessly to make visible dissent possible against incredible odds and an electronic Berlin Wall of controlled corporate media... sure ends with a whimper.

Oh well.


What're you gonna do?


From [name witheld]

the toronto star is going back and forth no?

Still the enemy

Sun Feb 19 14:46:22 EST 2006


Subject: Re: [The Star Article]

it's not bad, though it's a bit of a red-herring.
you can tell by the
way the article ends, and like most "liberal"
articles it ends with a
dead-end feeling of powerlessness, like "it's
bad, but... oh well,
there's nothing significant being done and thus
nothing i can do."

see how you felt when you finished reading it,
shitty eh?


The Toronto Star

Still the enemy

Three years after the invasion of Iraq and more than five years since 9/11, people who speak out against George W. Bush and his administration are paying a steep personal price

Feb. 19, 2006. 01:53 PM

The news for President George W. Bush is daunting.

Poll ratings are skidding, scandals are on the upswing, the "i" word (impeachment) is fluttering on the horizon, and his tough-talking vicepresident can't shoot straight.

But are his opponents declaring victory? Are they carried through the streets by admiring crowds, proclaimed as prophets on the hottest news networks, vindicated in standing-room-only town hall meetings?


On the contrary, those who have famously trumpeted their critical views of Bush are still in the political doghouse, particularly if they opposed his administration on its war in Iraq or the "war on terrorism." Even as the tide of public opinion turns, critics of American policy since 9/11 continue to pay a damaging price for their opinions.

"People are still afraid to speak out, and when they do, there are few places they can go to be heard," says Michael Ratner, an international human rights lawyer and president of the Center for Constitutional Rights in New York. "Those who do speak out are marginalized, attacked and discredited."

When Bush first ran for office, Ratner points out, his motto was "politics is war conducted by other means," a slogan taken from a campaign pamphlet by neo-conservative activist David Horowitz that paraphrased 19th-century Prussian military strategist Karl von Clausewitz.

"In political warfare you do not fight just to prevail in an argument but to destroy the enemy's fighting ability," Horowitz declared. "In political wars, the aggressor usually prevails."

For those who missed the point, Horowitz added a quote from Vladimir Lenin: "The goal is not to refute your opponent's argument but to wipe him from the face of the earth."

Spurred on by Republican éminence grise Karl Rove, Bush's campaign team galloped off to victory in two elections. Though the numbers didn't cover them in glory, they left their enemies bleeding on the field.

And, shortly after Bush's first election victory, the 9/11 attacks set the tone of his presidency.

The trauma of the massive assault, and the belief that the country was living under an Islamic sword of Damocles, created an atmosphere of anxiety and imminent danger, resulting in a more passive attitude to authority. The subsequent invasion of Iraq also intensified the political battle, splitting parties as well as relations between the United States and other countries.

In a world assailed by fear and uncertainty, and overwhelmed by messages of unity and patriotism, dissidents were moving targets.

In America, bereaved military mother Cindy Sheehan was harassed and arrested for her high-profile protests. War-hero presidential candidate John Kerry was accused of cowardice for opposing the invasion, along with decorated veteran and Democrat congressman John Murtha. Triple amputee vet Max Cleland lost his Senate seat after his opponent ran a campaign linking him with Osama bin Laden. Oscar-winning actress Susan Sarandon was booed off the stage for speaking out against the Iraq war.

Internationally, United Nations Secretary-General Kofi Annan was declared "irrelevant" and attacked for alleged corruption after he rejected a unilateral invasion of Iraq. Nobel Prize-winning International Energy Agency chief Mohammed elBaradei was accused of incompetence and his new term of office threatened.

In Britain, which supported the war, defence ministry official David Kelly committed suicide after disputing Prime Minister Tony Blair's claim that Iraq could fire deadly weapons on 45 minutes notice.

Diplomatic ties also frayed as French President Jacques Chirac was treated as an enemy by the White House, and Jean Chrétien was regarded with contempt in Bush circles for refusing to support the Iraq war.

Most of those who have paid the highest price for dissent have been Americans.

One was Joseph Wilson, a former American diplomat who blew the whistle on a Bush administration claim that Iraq had tried to purchase uranium ore from Niger, bolstering its contention that Saddam Hussein was producing nuclear weapons.

Wilson, who went on a fact-finding trip to Niger in 2002, accused the administration of "exaggerating the Iraqi threat" in order to launch the war in a New York Times essay in July 2003.

A week later his wife, Valerie Plame, was named as a CIA agent by right-wing columnist Robert Novak, an event that sparked a furor in Washington and appeared to be the opening shot in a campaign against Wilson. A probe of the Plame leak has continued since December 2003 and resulted in the indictment last October of Vice-President Dick Cheney's chief of staff, Lewis "Scooter" Libby.

Wilson, who was prepared for an attack by the Bush administration, was taken aback at the potentially dangerous intelligence leak aimed at his wife.

"I have in my closet memorabilia notes from the first President (George) Bush lauding my courage and leadership as a diplomat (in Baghdad and Africa)," he said in a phone interview. "I thought I could withstand any attacks that might be coming. I fully expected them to go after my credibility. But I never thought they would stoop to going after my wife."

`I thought I could withstand any attacks that might be coming. I fully expected them to go after my credibility. But I never thought they would stoop to going after my wife'

Wilson says the campaign against him has changed the lives of his family. "It's clear that there are certain things we can't do. My wife no longer works at the Agency. And I've found it's amazing how international business shies away from somebody who challenges the administration on matters of war and security. That's why so few people want to speak out."

One reason why Bush's opponents have found themselves sidelined, in spite of numerous recent challenges to the administration, is a lack of opportunity for public debate, Wilson believes.

"A very supine press has allowed the administration far more than it deserves, considering its lack of integrity. It's a hangover from 9/11. The tone was set when Dan Rather came out and said that in a time of crisis we are all Americans first. The administration has abused that. And it has taken a while for the press to react."

"I'd love the chance to debate those guys," Wilson says. "But the president disqualified me from the debate. He said he'd welcome an open debate as long as it's not about oil, Israel or manipulation of intelligence. As I want to talk about manipulation of intelligence, that rules me out."

Scott Ritter, a former UN weapons inspector and Marine, was one of the first to speak out against the American government's policy on Iraq. Even before the recent war, he was the target of allegations that he was an "Israeli agent," and his wife was investigated by the FBI as a member of the KGB.

But the problem runs deeper than individual slurs, Ritter contends

"I could care less if the world wakes up one day and says I was right all along," he said in a phone interview. "I want them to wake up and say, We were lied to by the government. We have a government that has behaved disingenuously and dishonourably, and there is no sign that it is changing course."

That, Ritter says, is because "it's the dynamic of organizations. When they invest heavily in a course of action, they are loath to change. The tendency is to reinforce failure until the point where they're confronted by absolute disaster. They don't want to acknowledge they've made a mistake."

On the scale of difficulties thrown in the way of suspected Bush enemies, John Graham says his is minor.

"When I take an airline flight, I have to spend an extra half an hour at the airport. They have to call Washington to let me get on the plane because I'm on a no-fly list," says the head of the Giraffe Heroes Project, which "encourages people to stick their necks out" on issues of the public good.

Graham, a former diplomat who once held a top-secret security clearance, has been placed on a "watch list" of terrorism suspects who are barred from boarding planes. He finds it almost impossible to believe that his is one of some 325,000 names reportedly listed as possible terrorists by the government's National Counterterrorism Center.

Graham admits that his constant round of speaking engagements to encourage Americans to denounce wrongdoing makes him vulnerable to harassment.

"If they really want to hurt me," he says, "they can stop me from getting on airplanes. I'm not a conspiracy theorist, but now I'm being pushed. I have no idea what I'm doing on the list, but Bush has made an implacable political enemy."

Graham and others are working to break the isolation of people who speak out. Their plight is worsened by a lack of public support that is rooted in fear and uncertainty.

But, says Mitchell Cohen, co-editor of the magazine Dissent, the viciousness with which some of Bush's opponents have been attacked is part of a tradition in America.

"Politics has been very bruising here. Rhetorical venom is a fact of life, and it goes back to Thomas Jefferson. There is a sorry history of demonizing opponents within the left as well as the right," he said in a phone interview.

The personalization of political attacks has undermined democratic debate, adds Cohen, who describes himself as a "left-hawk" on the Iraq war.

"Sharp argument is a characteristic feature of democracy when there are important issues to debate. Liberal democracy requires a certain attitude to argument; it should be the responsibility of liberals to raise the debate to the highest level it can be."

`Politics has been very bruising here. Rhetorical venom is a fact of life'

- Mitchell Cohen, Co-editor, Dissent magazine

The attacks on the Bush administration by the left have also descended to the personal level, Cohen said. "Too many liberals say Bush is stupid. But he twice won the governorship of Texas and the presidency. He may not write for The New York Review of Books, but you have to have an understanding of what he is — not a fascist but a type of American conservative. It's important to look at things in a complex way."

Shrewd political analysis may be needed in the turbulent atmosphere of America today. But in a country traumatized by real and stated threats, dissidents often find that emotion outguns reason.

"The constant use of the war on terror to rein in people has had an effect," said Ratner. "They don't want to support those they see as outsiders or spokespeople for opposing views. We haven't been able to build a real protest movement that makes the media take it seriously."

Grass-roots activism and outspoken protest continues in the U.S. Politicians have joined a chorus of opposition to the Iraq war and the undermining of civil liberties by anti-terrorism measures. According to the latest polls, up to 60 per cent of Americans disapprove of the way Bush is handling the situation in Iraq.

But with no concerted political leadership, Bush's critics say, the opposition shows little sign of winning the day. And those who have taken major risks to publicize their dissenting views are still isolated from the mainstream.

In spite of demonstrations and the defection of a number of Bush administration supporters, Ratner admits, "it isn't enough. We're still not moving forward. There is no strong leadership, and people don't know where to turn. The Democratic Party is so weak right now that there are no real alternatives.

"Protest is good. But it must have some place to go."

Additional articles by Olivia Ward


* Orwell Rolls in His Grave *

Orwell Rolls in His Grave provides a vital forum for ideas that will never be heard in mainstream media. New York University media professor Mark Crispin Miller says, "These commercial entities now vie with the government for control over our lives. They are not a healthy counterweight to government. Goebbels said that what you want in a media system – he meant the Nazi media system - is to present the ostensible diversity that conceals an actual uniformity."

This is a fantastic look at the media's least favorite subject - itself. Former CBS, ABC, Fox, New York Times and other journalists/producers come clean about how controlled the media really is, and despite great reviews and impeccable timing, it was predictably buried by... the media.

Oh yes, you think you know "the media lies"?

Sure you do, that's why you still watch the news and act like an expert at parties...


"Qui bono?"

"Who profits?"

Peace by peace...



Black Krishna Brand

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BONUS: Oh great, how come we won't know what the "Posse Comitatus Act" was until we are actually living in a police state?


October 17, 2002

Predators, Snipers and the Posse Comitatus Act


If you live in Falls Church, Virginia, and you see a funny looking aircraft circling over your neighborhood don't be alarmed. It's just the Pentagon looking for the sniper. CNN says Rummy wants to help out, so he has approved "military reconnaissance" of undetermined origin to snoop around the Washington area. CNN says the Pentagon has not disclosed what kind of equipment will be used. Yet earlier in the day I saw a report indicating the military will use General Atomics Aeronautical Systems Predator UAV drones.

They even showed video footage of the damn things.

Rummy just shot another big hole in the Posse Comitatus Act.

It's looked like Swiss cheese for years, ever since the military was "enlisted" to combat evil drug dealers. You know, drug dealers who sell CIA certified heroin and cocaine on the streets of American cities. According to CNN, the Pentagon is not really trashing the Posse Comitatus Act because there is no "direct involvement" between the cops and the military.

Maybe the copywriters over at CNN need to read up on the Posse Comitatus Act.

"Whoever, except in cases and under circumstances expressly authorized by the Constitution or Act of Congress, willfully uses any part of the Army or the Air Force as a posse comitatus or otherwise to execute the laws shall be fined under this title or imprisoned not more than two years, or both."

Of course, Rummy does not need Congress to tell him what to do. His "guidelines," recently published in the New York Times, demonstrate what he thinks about Congress and the American people.



Yahoo! News

Katrina report urges clearer Pentagon role

By Tabassum Zakaria Thu Feb 23, 11:37 AM ET

WASHINGTON (Reuters) - The Pentagon should have a clearer role in dealing with disasters such as Hurricane Katrina, the White House said on Thursday in recommending emergency-management changes after a problem-plagued federal response.

President George W. Bush, who has been widely criticized for an administration response deemed too slow, had ordered the review on September 6 as New Orleans and other areas of the Gulf Coast struggled to recover from the disaster which killed about 1,300 people and left thousands homeless.

The review led by Frances Townsend, homeland security adviser to Bush, follows a congressional report that sharply criticized the U.S. government's disaster response.

"I wasn't satisfied with the federal response," Bush said during a Cabinet meeting. "The report helps us anticipate how to better respond to future disasters."

The 217-page report acknowledged inadequate preparedness for the storm and said the current homeland security system "has structural flaws for addressing catastrophic events." But it did not single out anyone for blame.

It said better planning and coordination and clearer designation of responsibilities were needed, and identified 11 changes needed before June 1, the start of the next hurricane season. These include establishing joint field offices to manage federal efforts when disasters are predicted.

The report said the departments of Homeland Security and Defense should jointly plan for the military's disaster support, and in "extraordinary circumstances" the Defense Department should lead the federal effort.

The federal government should not be the first responder to a disaster, but should help state and local authorities when they become overwhelmed, it said.

"Federal officials struggled to perform responsibilities generally conducted by state and local authorities, such as the rescue of citizens stranded by the rising floodwaters, provision of law enforcement, and evacuation of the remaining population of New Orleans," the report said.

It cited a lack of planning and of a functioning state and local command structure.

On the military's role, it said, "The federal response to Hurricane Katrina demonstrates that the Department of Defense (DOD) has the capability to play a critical role in the nation's response to catastrophic events."

"Since DOD, first and foremost, has its critical overseas mission, the solution to improving the federal response to future catastrophes cannot simply be 'let the Department of Defense do it'," it said. But the department's abilities to help must be better identified and built into response plans.

The military response to Katrina was slowed by federal law and Defense Department policy that any military assistance must first be requested by local officials, the report said.

It recommends linking the National Guard more closely with active-duty forces for homeland security.

A Defense Department representative should also be present at the disaster field offices and Federal Emergency Management Agency regional offices to improve military coordination, it said.

A report by congressional Republicans last week said federal emergency agencies were unprepared for Katrina and quicker White House involvement might have helped.

Homeland Security Secretary Michael Chertoff has acknowledged that his department was overwhelmed by the August 29 storm but has denied that he and Bush were unresponsive.

(Additional reporting by Caren Bohan)

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Tuesday, February 21, 2006

Why is the headline: "Oliver Stone says September 11 movie not political" (AFP) When he also says: "the present administration has been a nightmare"?

All art is political, as it and our reactions to it inevitably reveal truths about how we want (or don't want) to live that should be reflected by personal and political action and change in helping us create a better world.

"We must never forget that art is not a form of propaganda; it is a form of truth."

- President John F. Kennedy

Even the most seemingly vacuous art that appears a purely self-indulgent celebration is political, for if people relate to it then it reveals an element of something they appreciate that can influence how they want to live. Universalizing this principle is key, and understanding why we relate to art is to better understand what we want out of life, including our tastes, our fears, our hopes, our dreams, and ultimately ourselves.

However, today being "political" is often seen as a "bad" thing in mainstream circles, like it should be left up to politicians. Having seen what politicians have done over the last thousand years and the world we've arrived at, this seems like a mistake.

Artists are also more reflective of true democracy: they appeal to the people directly, and the people vote for them directly with their pesos and passion. In a very direct and honest way the artist produces a message or meaning with their work, and this comes from a place of far greater integrity than nearly any other medium. Sometimes compromises are inevitable, but many are often resisted by the artist, as opposed to other areas of information dissemination where deliberately creating "spin" and "propaganda" are an integral part of message-making.

Politicians on the other hand are often elected by fractions of the uninformed electorate in their districts, they often engage in campaigns of deception fueled by corporate money and managed by public relations tactics, and they are inevitably indebted to their financial backers and political party more than they are to their electorate, or "the people". Unlike artists their integrity has been historically recognized as deliberately compromised, and especially today that is simply seen as a natural part of "playing the game" to win.

It is, and has always been, these same corrupt politicians now especially aided by a complicit corporate media who further this "anti-political" agenda, an expressly "political" attack on those who have the ability to reveal truths about a world they perpetually let fall apart through supporting a system that only increases in destructive influence. There are billions of people dissatisfied with the state of the world, but few can articulate it in widely accessable ways like artists can. If artists are allowed to freely comment then their message hits home, and they inspire people to demand changes from politicians that by and large benefit a society as a whole.

And yet, if artists are seen to be violating a cultural taboo by being "political", or if being "political" goes out of style, then what are we left with?

Better paid, better publicized, and power-partisan "experts" vs. poorer, marginalized, and people-partisan "activists", yet another term deliberately being forced to go "out of style" through mainstream-media demonization and exaggerated depictions of violence.

This is a deliberate and dangerous attempt to subtly concentrate power in the hands of the elite few for their own selfish ends, and people need to understand that their natural tastes and inclinations to appreciate artists and their work are being re-programmed as we speak. Humanity has a long and glorious history of appreciating artists that were "political", and their value to society has never been questioned by ordinary people in such a casual, common, and matter-of-fact way.

Until now.

After all, what would prompt an expressly "political" filmmaker like Oliver Stone to make the above "reassuring" statement?

And why would the media outlet reporting on his appearance at a film festival decide to make this "reassuring" statement the headline?

And why should this be the main "reassuring" story chosen to discuss his new film: what it's "not" as opposed to what it "is"?

And why are we being trained to be comforted by the fact that an entertainment choice is not "political"?

As in:

"Whew! That's a relief! I hate being preached at, and would much rather turn my rat-racing brain off and just enjoy myself!"

As if they're mutually exclusive, as if one doesn't get positive energy from invigorating truths, and as if the highest selling musician in history, Bob Marley, with over 300 million records sold, wasn't beautifully relaxing, agitating, informative, and yes, "political", all at the same time.

And as if we all have to react to the same stimuli in the same prescribed way.

The answer is the latest sophisticated version of what's been attempted for several years: the marginalization and minimization of free speech and healthy democratic dissent, with focused attacks on those who are the most effective at it.

With the emphasis on what's "hot or not", what's "in style", and what's "cool", it's not hard to corrupt individuality by creating more rules on what it takes to "fit in", and adding more perceived peer pressure to do so.

It seems forces are trying to herd us into "thinking the way we're supposed to about what we're supposed to", and using a corruption of popular culture that's leading us to question the motivations of our favourite artists speaking truth to power for the benefit of the whole world.

I saw a phenomenal speech online by author Arundhati Roy called "A Writer's Place in Politics", it's available at:

As she came to the stage a bit nervous, she announced that she was renaming the title of her talk given to her by Hampshire College, and calling it:

"Ladies Have Feelings Too, So Shall We Leave It To The Experts?"

Like millions of other artists she has a point, several actually, and with them the means and motivation to produce great art that defies the lies of "experts".

As we move into the 21st century, we have to acknowledge the contributions of artists who are "political" as a front-line defense against the hegemony of the economic and political elite, those who've neglected to produce a long-promised better world, and in fact, who've used their phenomenal institutional power and control to do just the opposite. To trust in the forces that are subtly forcing us to distrust our instincts is dangerous, and we risk a whole new cynical generation being raised without heroes.

I'm not sure if Mr. Stone's movie is "political" or not.

I'm not sure if his "reassuring" us that it's not is merely a tactic he's using to pacify the forces behind the mainstream media that could deny him much-needed publicity.

But I sure hope so.

As one of the greatest "political" filmmakers in history, winning Academy Awards for Best Director for his indictments of the Vietnam War in "Platoon" and "Born on the Fourth of July", it would be a tragedy for the media to train us to insist that he give up the soul of his greatness as a filmmaker, or for that to be the only way he can get another film made.

So really, it's up to us:

Are YOU happy he said his film about September 11th isn't "political"?

Are YOU happy he may now be creating TV movies-of-the-week?

Are YOU happy being trained to hate what you love?

"Qui bono?"

"Who profits?"

Peace, (NOW!!!)



Black Krishna Brand

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Director Oliver Stone, seen here in 2005, says he doesn't know if America is ready for his upcoming film about the September 11 terror attacks, but stresses the movie is a human rather than political account of the tragedy(AFP/File/David Livingstone)

Yahoo! News

Oliver Stone says September 11 movie not political

1 hour, 37 minutes ago

BANGKOK (AFP) - Director Oliver Stone says he doesn't know if America is ready for his upcoming film about the September 11 terror attacks, but stresses the movie is a human rather than political account of the tragedy.

The often controversial three-times Oscar-winner said "World Trade Center", to be released this year around the fifth anniversary of the attacks, documented a day in the life of two men trapped at the scene, their rescuers and families.

Speaking to an audience during a question and answer session late Monday at the Bangkok International Film Festival, Stone was asked if Americans were ready for the first major Hollywood film on the subject.

"Is America ready for 9/11? Is America ready for gay sex? I don't know," Stone told the audience, referring to Ang Lee's Oscar-nominated cowboy film "Brokeback Mountain" which has been a surprise hit in US cinemas.

"It's about a rescue and families involved in the rescue. It's really a technical attempt to be realistic about what happened in that building," he said.

Oscar-winning actor Nicolas Cage plays the film's lead role, New York Port Authority policeman Sergeant John McLoughlin, who was trapped along with a fellow officer in the mangled wreckage of one of the twin towers that crumbled after being hit by hijacked passenger jets.

Besides the sensitivity of the subject matter to the American public, industry media have reported that some people linked to the Paramount Pictures project were concerned that Stone may introduce his own politics into the movie.

Stone has been publicly critical of US President George W. Bush's handling of the attacks and their aftermath and in Bangkok told the audience that "the present administration has been a nightmare".

But Stone, whose film "JFK" was condemned in some quarters for pushing the argument that the 1963 assassination of president John F. Kennedy was part of a plot, said there were no conspiracy theories in "World Trade Center".

"No, there's no mention of that because it's truly a 24-hour document of these men's lives," he said.

"They were right at the heart of the destruction ... right in the middle by an elevator shaft. They survived. It's about their rescue and their children at home," Stone added.

Stone said filming had finished two weeks ago, with the last four weeks proving difficult to work in as the set was filled with smoke.

But Stone, who won best director Academy Awards for his war epics "Born On the Fourth Of July" (1989) and "Platoon" (1986) as well as best screenplay for prison drama "Midnight Express" (1978), said making the film had humbled him.

"It was a wonderful experience to go back to working class people and their ordinary lives, the cops and firemen in New York. It was a very humbling experience," he said.

Stone, whose films have aroused controversy ever since "JFK", said the political landscape had changed "radically" under the Bush administration.

"If we get to make films and plays about it, it will be an interesting era to write about," he said.

The September 11 attacks that left a total of around 3,000 people dead in New York, Washington and Pennsylvania.

The Bangkok film festival, which features 160 movies from some 50 countries, runs until February 27.

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Sunday, February 19, 2006

Yahoo! News: "Bin Laden Vows Never to Be Captured Alive" vs. BBC's: "The Power of Nightmares" (You can CIA it for yourself! :-)

Yahoo! News

Bin Laden Vows Never to Be Captured Alive

2 minutes ago

CAIRO, Egypt - Osama bin Laden promised never to be captured alive and declared the U.S. had resorted to the same "barbaric" tactics used by Saddam Hussein, according to an audiotape purportedly by the al-Qaida leader posted Monday on a militant Web site.

The tape appeared to be a complete version of one that was first broadcast Jan. 19 on Al-Jazeera, the pan-Arab satellite channel, in which bin Laden offered the United States a long-term truce but also said his al-Qaida terror network would soon launch a fresh attack on American soil.

"I have sworn to only live free. Even if I find bitter the taste of death, I don't want to die humiliated or deceived," bin Laden said. He also said U.S. actions in Iraq were comparable to the actions of the ousted Iraqi leader.

The tape's release in January came days after a U.S. airstrike in Pakistan that was targeting bin Laden's deputy, Ayman al-Zawahri, and reportedly killed four leading al-Qaida figures, including possibly al-Zawahri's son-in-law. There was no mention of the attack on the segments that were broadcast.

It was the first tape from the al-Qaida leader in more than a year — the longest period without a message since the Sept. 11 2001 suicide hijackings in the United States.

The CIA last month authenticated the voice on the initial recording as that of bin Laden, an agency official told The Associated Press at the time. The al-Qaida leader is believed to be hiding in the border region between Afghanistan and Pakistan.

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"Those with the darkest fears became the most powerful."

- from BBC's "The Power of Nightmares"

BBC News

Last Updated: Friday, 14 January, 2005, 12:07 GMT

The Power of Nightmares: Baby It's Cold Outside

Should we be worried about the threat from organised terrorism or is it simply a phantom menace being used to stop society from falling apart?

In the past our politicians offered us dreams of a better world. Now they promise to protect us from nightmares.

The most frightening of these is the threat of an international terror network. But just as the dreams were not true, neither are these nightmares.

In a new series, the Power of Nightmares explores how the idea that we are threatened by a hidden and organised terrorist network is an illusion.

It is a myth that has spread unquestioned through politics, the security services and the international media.

Three part series
Tuesday, 18 January, 2005
2320 GMT on BBC Two

I: Baby It's Cold Outside
II: The Phantom Victory
III: The Shadows In The Cave

At the heart of the story are two groups: the American neo-conservatives and the radical Islamists.

Both were idealists who were born out of the failure of the liberal dream to build a better world.

These two groups have changed the world but not in the way either intended.

Together they created today's nightmare vision of an organised terror network.

A fantasy that politicians then found restored their power and authority in a disillusioned age. Those with the darkest fears became the most powerful.

The rise of the politics of fear begins in 1949 with two men whose radical ideas would inspire the attack of 9/11 and influence the neo-conservative movement that dominates Washington.

Both these men believed that modern liberal freedoms were eroding the bonds that held society together.

The two movements they inspired set out, in their different ways, to rescue their societies from this decay. But in an age of growing disillusion with politics, the neo-conservatives turned to fear in order to pursue their vision.

They would create a hidden network of evil run by the Soviet Union that only they could see.

The Islamists were faced by the refusal of the masses to follow their dream and began to turn to terror to force the people to "see the truth"'.

The Power of Nightmares will be broadcast over three nights from Tuesday 18 to Thursday, 20 January, 2005 at 2320 GMT on BBC Two. The final part has been updated in the wake of the Law Lords ruling in December that detaining foreign terrorist suspects without trial was illegal.



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"Qui bono?"

"Who profits?"

Peace, (NOW!!!)



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Confessions of an Economic Hitman: "Bolivia's Morales finds common ground with U.S" (Yahoo! News/Reuters)

Wednesday, February 15th, 2006

Self-Described Economic Hit Man John Perkins: “We Have Created the World’s First Truly Global Empire”

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John Perkins, author of "Confessions of an Economic Hit Man," joins us in our firehouse studio to talk about his former work going into various countries to try to strongarm leaders into creating policy favorable to the U.S government and corporations. Perkins describes himself as an economic hit man. [includes rush transcript]



And these people you know, who you call economic hit men, who are the first to move in to these men who gain power, where does -- what do you know about Evo Morales now? He's just been elected President?

Well, I have no doubt that he has been visited by at least one of these men, who's known him beforehand. These are not strangers that walk in. They’ve been hanging around Bolivia for a while, as I did. And so, once the President is elected, they walk into his office and shake his hands and say, “Congratulations, Mr. President. You won. We launched a strong campaign against you, but now you've won. And now, I want to tell you the facts of life and make you --”

And you know someone who has talked to him in this way?


AMY GOODMAN: And what was -- according to you, what was President Morales's response?

JOHN PERKINS: Morales was very diplomatic about the whole thing, but absolutely stood firm and said, “You know, my people have elected me for a reason, and I intend to honor that.” This is what his initial response was. But what I will say is we can't imagine the pressure now that’s being exerted on a man like Morales, as is true with all these other presidents. They know what's happened before their time. And they – you know, the pressure will be put on them tighter and tighter and tighter.

And imagine being in that position. Imagine being an integritous person and really wanting to help your country, being elected with a majority – Morales got 54% of the vote, which is unheard of in Bolivia; he was up against many opponents -- and then, wanting to implement the policy, and somebody walks into your office and reminds you of what happened to all these other presidents.

And perhaps the most scary one was Noriega, who did not get assassinated. He wasn't a martyr. Instead, he had to stand by and watch several thousand innocent Panamanian civilians bombed, slaughtered, burned to death. And then he was dragged off to a U.S. prison, where he has been pretty much in solitary confinement every since. Imagine thinking that might happen to you.

And so, Evo Morales, the story has just begun for him. I sympathize with him very deeply. And I think from our standpoint, Amy, as American citizens -- and I look at myself as an extremely loyal American citizen. I believe in the principles of this country, which I think that in the past few decades, increasingly, we've put them way in the back burner. But as good Americans, we need to insist that our government and our corporations honor democracy.

AMY GOODMAN: John Perkins, author of Confessions of an Economic Hit Man.


Bolivian President Evo Morales holds a replica of a trumpet during a performance of some 6,000 musicians dressed in colourful uniforms in a central square in Oruro, 124 miles south of La Paz, February 18, 2006. Morales said on Sunday he had found common ground with the United States in less than a month as president -- even on the sensitive issue of drugs policy. REUTERS/Stringer

Yahoo! News

Bolivia's Morales finds common ground with U.S

By Helen Popper 38 minutes ago

LA PAZ, Bolivia (Reuters) - Bolivian President Evo Morales said on Sunday he had found common ground with the United States in less than a month as president -- even on the sensitive issue of drugs policy.

Morales, a coca farmer who described his movement as a "nightmare for the U.S." while campaigning, was speaking a day after meeting Washington's ambassador to Bolivia -- the world's third-biggest cocaine producer after Colombia and Peru.

"With the ambassador of the United States we have several points of view in common such as the defense of democracy and the battle against corruption... We at least agree on 'zero cocaine'," said Morales, a leftist who has pledged to fight the drugs trade while promoting legal uses of coca leaves.

The United States funds coca eradication programs in Bolivia's tropical Chapare region, where it says most coca, the raw material for cocaine, ends up with drug smugglers. Poor farmers say coca is mostly used for traditional purposes, from hunger suppressants to protection against altitude sickness.

Morales admitted that the eradication of excess coca plants was still a potential point of conflict with the United States for as long as it maintains a policy of 'zero coca'.

Following Saturday afternoon's meeting with Morales, U.S. ambassador David Greenlee told local television he was concerned about the pace of eradication in the Chapare.

"What matters to us is that there is a way to reduce excess coca. I believe that up to now the rhythm of the eradication has been very slow. I hope it will speed up," Greenlee said.

Yesterday's meeting followed a series of tentative contacts between Washington and Morales since his December 18 election. As well as his policy on coca, Washington is wary of his close friendships with fellow leftists President Hugo Chavez of Venezuela and Cuba's Fidel Castro.

Morales met Greenlee before he was sworn into office last month and also held talks with Washington's top Latin America official Thomas Shannon who attended his Jan 22. inauguration.

At the start of this month, U.S. President George W. Bush telephoned Morales to congratulate him on his election victory and expressed hope for a dialogue.

Last week, Morales put himself at odds with his coca farmer allies by saying U.S. anti-drugs officials could stay in Bolivia as long as they respected its "dignity and sovereignty." The coca growers had passed a resolution to deport them.

On Sunday, Morales reiterated his position. "They are going to stay as long as they do not violate human rights," he told a news conference in the presidential palace.

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Get Tupac a star on the Hollywood Walk of Fame (online petition)

Get Tupac a star on the Hollywood Walk of Fame

February 19th, 2006 - by Pittsey

The Hollywood Walk of Fame is a sidewalk along Hollywood Boulevard and Vine Street in Hollywood, California, United States, which is embedded with more than 2,000 five-pointed stars featuring the names of celebrities honored by the Hollywood Chamber of Commerce for their contributions to the entertainment industry.

The stars celebrate entertainers from all walks of industry, from film to television, from the recording industry to the broadcast radio industry to live theater; there is a star from nearly everyone relevant to Hollywood history.

However there is one entertainer who is revered by millions across the globe who is yet to have a star. He is the largest selling rapper in history. He has appeared in films with stars such as Mickey Rourke, Tim Roth and Thandie Newton.

The entertainer in question is one Tupac Shakur, the multi album, unofficial greatest rapper of all time.

Why does he deserve a star? Well it’s very simple. There isn’t a rapper in the business today that hasn’t been influenced by Tupac in some way. The tattoos, the swagger, the confidence is evident in every rapper since. When influences are discussed in interviews Tupac is continuously one of the first names mentioned.

When we also consider how he excelled in the rap music industry and is still today, nearly 10 years since he passed, he has released nearly an album a year posthumously. The millions of albums sold, over 30 Million. The many die hard fans across the globe, which visit websites daily and speak on his influence to anyone that will listen. To the many who saw his recent documentary and the Oscar nomination it received.

If we also look at the Stars that have already been given Pat Sajak, Thomas Edison, Big Bird, Pee Wee Herman and Mabel Taliaferro, then doesn’t Tupac deserve a star? He is in a different class to those "entertainers".

Well some people believe he does, and some of them are making an effort to ensure he receives that deserved recognition, and the Star. A group has been set up to pursue this and is headed by rapper Muszamil (some fans might remember him as Hellraza from the Outlaw Record days and as Napoleon's little brother). The group is working hard to get 2pac the proper recognition by presenting him a star in the Hollywood Walk of Fame. They have a set up a critical meeting next Friday with some key members of the committee as well as with some influential politicians and business leaders.

Where is Tupac's star? If Ryan seacrest has one it is an outrage that 2pac is ignored. It is the early stages of the nomination process and if people step up and participate in the petition and spread the word and show the Hollywood Chamber of Commerce the importance of Tupac, we will see that deserved star.

If you too feel that Tupac has been ignored and want to help in the movement, then please fill out the petition below. It is not just an online fan petition and will be taken to the people most likely to help us achieve our goal. Let’s show that Tupac has a huge following and that he needs to be recognized on the Hollywood Walk of Fame.

To: Hollywood Chamber of Commerce and the Walk of Fame Selection Committee

We are committed on getting Tupac Shakur a posthumous star on the Hollywood walk of fame. It would be a fitting tribute to a modern day legend that passed before his time. We will officially present this petition to members of the Hollywood Chamber of Commerce as well as the honorary major of Hollywood Mr. Johnny Grant who is the head of the Hollywood Walk of Fame selection committee. Tupac Shakur known to millions of fans worldwide as 2pac was a true modern day icon. As far as popularity Tupac Shakur can easily be placed under the same category as Elvis Presley. 2pac accomplished so much in the music industry and in entertainment in general that even nine years after his untimely death he still a remains a power full presence in society. Besides selling countless number of records and breaking worldwide marks for music sales, 2pac also left a lasting impact on society. His poems, and musical work have been studied in various schools with courses on 2pac being taught in numerous colleges ranging from UC Berkley in Northern California, to the University of Florida, and the historic Morehouse college in Georgia. It would take twenty plus pages + to list all of 2pac's accomplishments as a power full entertainer and a beloved human being. We encourage all members of the rap community to step up participate and spread the word. This petition and movement to get Tupac Shakur a much deserved star on the Hollywood Walk of Fame is being organized by Muszamil a protégé of the late Tupac Shakur and a member of his extended family. We thank you all for participating and for your support.


The Undersigned


Hip-Hop Icon Tupac (2Pac) Remembered in Wax

2/4/2006 6:15:39 PM by Robert

This past September the Tupac Amaru Shakur Center for the Arts (TASCA) unveiled the memorial bronze statue of hip-hop rap icon Tupac Shakur (2Pac), making Tupac the first rap icon to immortalized in bronze. The bronze statue was designed and created by noted sculptor Tina Allen.

Now again the greatest figures in hip-hop culture Tupac Shakur (2Pac) will be immortalized, but this time in wax. The world-famous Madame Tussauds in Las Vegas at the glorious Venetian Hotel, will unveil the sculpture on April 5, 2006 at a special ceremony commencing at 11:00 A.M.

The wax portrait of Tupac is being sculpted by Jeni Fairey of The Tussauds Studios based in London. Unlike the bronze statue that portrays Tupac the man, in a suit; the wax sculpture will be based on the now-iconic ‘Thug Life’ image of a shirtless rap artist Tupac (2Pac) sporting a bandana and proudly displaying his tattoos.

The Tupac wax figure will be created from hundreds of photographs and measurements provided to Madame Tussauds by Tupac’s mother, Afeni Shakur Davis. Each of Tupac’s tattoos will first be redrawn and then individually hand-painted onto the sculpture.

The finished figure will take months to complete, involving more than 700 hours of work and over 330 pounds of clay. The entire figure will weigh around 55 pounds. To put Tupac in his own environment, Madame Tussauds is in negotiations with 2Pac’s old label, Interscope Records, to obtain original music from Tupac’s world and add a further layer of reality to the unique “Tussauds experience.”

To commemorate the historic 10th Anniversary of Tupac’s (2Pac) murder, Madame Tussauds is considering sending the new wax figure on its own world tour later this year. Once it has been viewed at the Las Vegas museum, the sculpture may travel to the museums in New York, Hong Kong, Shanghai and London before it will be exhibited at the Tupac Amaru Shakur Center for the Arts (TASCA) in Atlanta for a full month. The figure is scheduled to arrive at the Center by the end of this memorial year.

Tupac Shakur has consistently been the celebrity most requested to receive a wax tribute from Madame Tussauds Las Vegas museum. The sculpture’s unveiling arrives nearly ten years after Tupac’s murder in Las Vegas and it will be exhibited for years to come.

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