Archive for April, 2012

America’s Descent into Hell

May 1st, 2012

America, a once free, proud and thriving country, has quietly and rapidly descended into a fascist nazi style police state.  The USA has the highest per capita incarceration rate of any nation on Earth.  We have twice as many people locked up in prisons as China, which has a billion and a half people.  We have a military-industrial-complex that spends TRILLIONS of US dollars on weapons, killing, war, death and destruction.

One hundred BILLION US dollars are spent on so-called, “homeland security”, whose TSA goons illegally violate our 4th amendment rights to personal privacy and dignity at our airports.  This country forces fluoridated water and GMO (genetically modified) food down the throats of its citizens, turning the USA into a nation with one of the highest cancer and sterility rates in the world.

We have nearly 50% of our people (roughly 150 million) living at or below the official poverty line, while the rest of American suburbia drives around in gas-guzzling trucks and SUV’s, threatening future generations of the world’s yet born with catastrophic climatic conditions that threaten the very foundations of life as we know it on this planet.  Instead of harnessing its scientific, technological and ideological talent and genius to help build a thriving, sustainable and survivable world civilization, this nation has squandered its capital on illegal spy and surveillance cameras, domestic police state intelligence centers, homeland security “nazi” TSA goon squads, multibillion dollar cyber security centers, fleets of domestic surveillance drones, armies of brainwashed local, state and federal bureaucrats and right wing jack booted military police state thugs assaulting and criminalizing our freedoms, rights and constitutional civil liberties.

Backwards and highly dysfunctional can hardly begin to characterize the twisted priorities of this god-forsaken nation.  At the very heart of this abomination known as America, though, sits the international fascist jewish rothschild banking cartel, who not only owns and operates the US federal reserve, but rules the nation by executive, legislative and judicial decree, in effect, paying off and installing their puppets into positions of power and authority all throughout the country.  Whatever existed in the form of any representational democracy in America is now long dead, if it ever really existed at all.

As the world literally spins out of control in the years and decades ahead, let us never forget the golden opportunity America had to develop the vision, intelligence, infrastructure and incentive to build an advanced global environmentally green based world order for the human species.  Instead, this ‘light unto the nations’ devolved into a fearful, paranoid, security obsessed, debased and debauched fascist nazi police state, completely antithetical to its central constitutional core values.

It is the jewish rothschild empire who is at the source of all real evil on this planet.  This synagogue of satan, headquartered in the CITY of London, UK, is primarily responsible for America’s descent into hell and for turning our cherished freedoms and liberties into chains of slavery and submission.  If the rothschild jew had invested in spiritual rather than material wealth and power (not one ounce of gold shall he be able to take with him in the world beyond his death), the foundation for world peace would have been set, and instead of operating out of fear, persecution, theft, murder, deceit and deception, we would be operating in a world of cooperation, compassion, love and mutual respect amongst the peoples and nations of the world. 

It is the Jews at the very top of the world’s political and economic pyramid who need to come to grips with the fact that it is in their best interest to serve the ways of life and not death.  Police states, prisons, domestic spy and surveillance operations, billions of people living in squalor, misery and poverty, eugenics policies and bloated national militaries have absolutely NO PLACE in an advanced, intelligent and survivable world civilization. 

A world ‘out of balance’ must get its own house in order first before it can reach for the stars…

 

Christi M Paine

Salida Colorado

THRIVE: What on Earth Will it Take-> http://www.youtube.com/thrivemovement

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Russian Roulette: Russian Troops To Train on American Soil, Simulate Takeover of Denver International Airport

theintelhub.com
April 26, 2012

Back in 2005 Ground Zero had reported that there was going to be a change in CIA operations. The CIA announced that they were to transfer all base operations to Denver in 2005, with many speculating their main base of operations had been placed beneath the Denver International Airport.

Recently, in Wired Magazine there was a featured story that reported that NSA base operations were transferred to a remote area in Bluffdale Utah.

Bluffdale is the home of the Utah State Penitentiary, US Army Base Camp Williams, and a so called Internment camp that was used to house refugees from the Katrina Disaster.

The moving of most base operations for the Government to the Western states, especially mountainous regions, has been the basis for a lot of conspiratorial speculation over the years.

There has been a lot of reports about the mysterious Denver airport and how it has been built primarily as a Military stronghold and not just a commercial airport.

The Denver International Airport is interesting because it has one of the longest runways in the country. It also is an airport that not only has an upper level but many lower levels that are not public areas.

This is one of the reasons that the airport has been embroiled in controversy since it opened in 1994. The other reasons are far more mysterious and esoteric, leading many people to believe that it will be a crucial base of operations for the New World Order.

It is interesting to point out that the design of the facility is eerily similar to a Nazi Swastika. There is also a lot of eerie symbolism at the airport including a 32 foot tall Horse that has been nicknamed Blucifer and DIAblo that greets you at the entrance.

It most definitely is a representation of the Pale horse of death and hell spoken of in the book of revelation. The Horse has also been known to change colors because of cloud cover and at times appears to be black. A

t night its eyes are red and are lit. Many people consider the sculpture to be haunted or evil since a piece fell off and killed its creator.

The Illuminati have often been known to demonstrate their agendas through art and literature. It is known as the revelation of the method or cloaked revelation.

This gradual release of revelation seems to be, in many cases, a component of a traumatizing process geared towards desensitizing the witnesses. The horse represents many things to many people;  death, hell, famine, pestilence, even a marker of warning to stay away from the facility because it is a facility meant for war operations.

The airport is adorned with many eerie demonic looking gargoyles across the walls. Many are depicted as lurking in the luggage and many of the creatures seem alien or sinister like gremlins that are watching your every move.

As you walk through the facility there is an area known as the great hall. In that corridor there is a capstone that has an arm that extends forward with a keypad attached.

The key pad is blocked so no one can type in a code. It is supposed to suggest that the people of Colorado in 2094 will use the keypad to open a time capsule buried below.

There will be a message there for them to read. The stone shows the Masonic compass and is dedicated to The World Airport Commission.

There is no such group in existence but there could be by 2094, that is if the plans of a New World order is advanced through force and a militarized army capable of working together to force America into giving up its sovereignty to a model of Government that is being created by the same leaders who have designed Chinese Communism.

Capitalism will be kept on a leash and watched over by world controllers able to order armies to work together under the umbrella of a unified front against and externalized enemy.

The makings of such a unified front are in the works now as it has been reported that Russian and American troops are working together for the first time in history.

On May 21st through the 24th 2012, Russian Troops will parachute drop into the United States and team up with American troops to stage an invasion war game scenario that has both trying to defend themselves from an unnamed enemy hell bent on seizing various CIA, DIA, and NSA operations.

A report issued about the war-game scenario details what is to happen and the operations objectives:

Russian airborne troops will fly to and then parachute from their planes having the objectives of seizing the CIA’s main computer facility in Denver, the NSA’s main computer facility in Bluffdale, Utah, and taking control of main runways and terminals of the Denver International Airport.

The purpose of seizing the Denver International Airport, this report continues, is for the evacuation of the key personal and equipment previously “freed” from the CIA’s Denver base, and the NSA’s base in Utah, who were, supposedly, under “imminent threat” from an unspecified enemy, according, that is, to the American scenario for this war game.

Could this be a drill, designed to see how foreign troops would be called in in case of civil disobedience or a revolt?

The United States has been preparing for some major upheaval and new laws and executive orders have been drawn up to have control over property, food and water. All resources will fall under the control of the executive branch of government in case of a crisis.

There has not been an indication as to what the crisis will be, however we are aware of the plans of the United Nations and their push for a New Global Order that will enforce green laws for global sustainability policies.

As we have talked about earlier it seems that this agenda is being pushed by the UN and that the provisions will be mapped out extensively and eventually acted upon during a June 20th, Summit known as the United Nations Conference on Sustainable Development, “Rio +20.”

Many people speculate that the meeting will not only map out the plans for a more sustainable planet with a new government structure, but also discuss ways of culling the planet or removing undesirables that do not want to accept the new global order.

All of this sounds like some fear based paranoia however, there have been many stories and articles stating that Illuminati plans for world destruction and rebuilding can be found in the murals painted at the Denver airport.

As illustrated in a special Ground Zero behind the scenes video ,The Illuminati appear to have detailed their plans for global genocide and a New World Order in two large murals.

The first depicts a huge Nazi soldier with dead women and children scattered around him and the second shows many of the world populations dying.

Everywhere in the mural are races, and religious groups represented by bodies in caskets, one in particular wears a pocket watch that indicates the time of this happening is soon.

Nearby we see when that time might be, the Mayan calendar is seen being held by a young girl, possibly pointing to 2012 as the time of all of this change and upheaval.

Finally the Mural shows that all of the people of the world come together in peace to defeat the masked phantom. They bring with them all of their weapons and implements of death to one young man. T

hat young man will eventually lead everyone to peace through a world government. One world, one destiny, and one order.

As Alice Bailey wrote in her “Destiny of Nations” The world is one world, and its sufferings are one; humanity is in truth a unity, but many are still unaware of this, and the whole trend of the present teaching is directed to the awakening of humanity to this, while there is yet time to avert still more serious conditions.

The sins of humanity are also one. Its goal is one, and it is as one great human family that we must emerge into the future. I would emphasize this thought: It is as one humanity, chastened, disciplined but illumined and fused, that we must emerge into the future.

Those who do not grasp this important fact, whether they are called belligerents or neutrals, will suffer deeply as a result of their non-participation in the fate of the whole….The Hierarchy is not neutral.

On one of the highest hilltops in Elbert County, Georgia stands a huge granite monument. Engraved in eight different languages on the four giant stones that support the common capstone are 10 Guides or commandments.

That monument is alternately referred to as The Georgia Guide stones, or the American Stonehenge. Though relatively unknown to most people, it is an important link to the Occult Hierarchy that dominates the world in which we live.

The occult hierarchy of the Illuminati has stated on the Goldstones their recommendations for a safe and secure world.

1. Maintain humanity under 500,000,000 in perpetual balance with nature.
2. Guide reproduction wisely – improving fitness and diversity.
3. Unite humanity with a living new language.
4. Rule passion – faith – tradition – and all things with tempered reason.
5. Protect people and nations with fair laws and just courts.
6. Let all nations rule internally resolving external disputes in a world court.
7. Avoid petty laws and useless officials.
8. Balance personal rights with social duties.
9. Prize truth – beauty – love – seeking harmony with the infinite.
10. Be not a cancer on the earth – Leave room for nature – Leave room for nature.

We now can see what the future is about. It is about dramatically reducing the population of the world, promoting environmentalism, establishing a world government, and promoting a new sense of spirituality.

World needs to stabilise population and cut consumption, says Royal Society

 

World needs to stabilise population and cut consumption, says Royal Society

Economic and environmental catastrophes unavoidable unless rich countries cut consumption and global population stabilises

Over-consumption and over-population : Crowds of sun seekers fill the beach

World population will reach 9 billion by 2050. Photograph: Peter Macdiarmid/Getty Images

World population needs to be stabilised quickly and high consumption in rich countries rapidly reduced to avoid “a downward spiral of economic and environmental ills”, warns a major report from the Royal Society.

Contraception must be offered to all women who want it and consumption cut to reduce inequality, says the study published on Thursday, which was chaired by Nobel prize-winning biologist Sir John Sulston.

The assessment of humanity’s prospects in the next 100 years, which has taken 21 months to complete, argues strongly that to achieve long and healthy lives for all 9 billion people expected to be living in 2050, the twin issues of population and consumption must be pushed to the top of political and economic agendas. Both issues have been largely ignored by politicians and played down by environment and development groups for 20 years, the report says.

“The number of people living on the planet has never been higher, their levels of consumption are unprecedented and vast changes are taking place in the environment. We can choose to rebalance the use of resources to a more egalitarian pattern of consumption … or we can choose to do nothing and to drift into a downward spiral of economic and environmental ills leading to a more unequal and inhospitable future”, it says.

At today’s rate of population increase developing countries will have to build the equivalent of a city of a million people every five days from now to 2050, says the report. “Global population growth is inevitable for the next few decades. By 2050, it is projected that today’s population of 7 billion will have grown by 2.3 billion, the equivalent of a new China and an India.”

But the sheer number of people on earth is not as important as their inequality and how much they consume, said Jules Pretty, one of the working group of 22 who produced the report. “In material terms it will be necessary for most developed countries to abstain from certain sorts of consumption, such as CO2. You do not need to be consuming so much to have a long and healthy life. We cannot conceive of a world that is going to be as unequal as it is now. We must bring the 1.3 billion people living on less than a $1.25 a day out of absolute poverty. It’s critical to slow population growth in those countries which cannot keep up with services.”

The report gives the example of Niger in West Africa which has increased life expectancy in the past 30 years but is doubling population every 20 years. “Even assuming its total fertility rate (Tfr) falls to 3.9 by 2050, which may be optimistic, the population will grow from 15.5 to 55.5 million by 2050. A future in which population increase outstrips the production of food and other necessities of life is a real possibility for Niger. It is difficult to see a bright future for the country without sharp reductions in fertility and population growth together with increased investment in health and education,” it said.

Population fertility

Most of the global population growth in the next century will come from the 48 least developed countries, of which 32 are in Africa, said Ekliya Zulu, one of the authors and president of the Union for African Population studies. “Taking Africa alone, the population will increase by 2 billion this century. If we fail and fertility levels do not go down to 2.1, (from 4.7 now) the population [there] may reach 5.3 billion. When we slow down population growth we empower women and provide more money for least developed countries to invest in education. The majority of women want fewer children. The demand to reduce fertility is there”, he said.

The authors acknowledge that it would take time and massive political commitment to shift consumption patterns in rich countries, but believe that providing contraception would cost comparatively little. “To supply all the world’s unmet family planning needs would be $6-7bn a year. It’s not much. It’s an extremely good investment, extremely affordable. To not provide family planning is an infringement of human rights”, said Sulston.

The authors declined to put a figure on sustainable population, saying it depended on lifestyle choices and consumption. But they warned that without urgent action humanity would be in deep trouble. “The pressure on a finite planet will make us radically change human activity”, said Pretty.

“The planet has sufficient resources to sustain 9 billion, but we can only ensure a sustainable future for all if we address grossly unequal levels of consumption. Fairly redistributing the lion’s share of the earth’s resources consumed by the richest 10% would bring development so that infant mortality rates are reduced, many more people are educated and women are empowered to determine their family size – all of which will bring down birth rates”, said an Oxfam spokeswoman.

Population biomes chart

The Island President Stands up Against Global Climate Change

04/25/2012 // 11:38 am // 1 Comment // , Communications Intern

What would you do if you lived on an island 1.5 meters above sea level and faced the dangers of climate change? A new film shows how in the island nation of the Maldives, one brave leader is helping make climate change a global human rights issue.

Mohamed Nasheed is the former President of the Maldives, and a global environmental activist with a creative knack for publicity. Since being ousted this February as a part of an alleged coup, Nasheed has continued to fight for the environment and for the country he once led.

The Maldives is a low-lying archipelago (actually the lowest country on Earth) made up of 1,200 coral islands in the Indian Ocean. Nasheed himself casually describes the islands as “a cross between paradise and paradise.” However, with current sea level rise, studies suggest the nation may be uninhabitable by 2100.

In 2008, Nasheed gave unprecedented access to filmmakers who wished to make a documentary about the President and his fight to save his former nation from sinking.

Directed by Jon Shenk and produced by Richard Berge and Bonnie Cohen, The Island President follows former President Nasheed from the time he takes office in 2008 until the United Nations climate change summit in Copenhagen in December 2009. The Island President is now playing in select cities (to see if it’s playing near you, click here).

Nasheed has spent most of his adult life fighting for what he believes is right. As an outspoken critic of former six-term President Maumoon Abdul Gayoom, Nasheed spent 20 years fighting for democracy in the Maldives. He was beaten, arrested over 10 times, tortured and spent years in prison. Nasheed helped form the Maldivian Democratic Party, became the nominee in 2008 and won the Presidency in the nation’s first multi-party election.

While people were still celebrating, Nasheed made a point about the rising seas threatening his islands in this newly-democratic country. “It’s great, but what’s the point of having a democracy if we’re all dead?”

Faced with the problem of Maldivian people becoming the first permanent climate refugees, Nasheed made climate change and rising sea levels his top priority. In 2009, Nasheed made a pledge for the Maldives to become the first carbon-neutral country.

In the film, during the summit in Copenhagen, a reporter asked Nasheed about climate deniers. “There are people who still believe the world is flat or that we did not land on the moon,” Nasheed responded. “A few skeptics do not change the reality of fact.”

US West Bakes in Heat and Dries Out in 2012

While the East has been dealing with a powerful Nor’easter that dumped several inches of windswept rain along the coast, and up to 2 feet of snow in the interior, the West has been baking in record heat. The heat is spreading eastward into the Plains states, but it will be short-lived there, eventually settling in the southern tier of the U.S. later this week.

West Texas, which was ground zero for scorching weather last summer, is likely to see temperatures approach or eclipse the century mark this week.

During the past seven days, 746 daily record-high temperatures were set or tied, along with 400 daily record-high minimum temperatures, according to the National Climatic Data Center. According to Jeff Masters of Weather Underground, the 113°F measured at Furnace Creek in Death Valley, Calif., on April 22 was tied for the hottest April temperature ever recorded in the U.S.

 

View of the records set on April 22, using Climate Central’s Record Temperature Tracker. The red dots indicate warm temperature records, while the blue dots show cold temperature records.

Masters wrote: “Nearly every weather station in the Inter-mountain West has broken, tied, or come within 1- 2°F of their all-time record April heat record since Sunday. Most notably, the 113°F measured at Furnace Creek in Death Valley, Calif., on April 22 was tied for the hottest April temperature ever recorded in the U.S. According to wunderground weather historian Christopher C. Burt, the hottest reliable April temperature ever measured in the U.S. was 113°F in Parker, Ariz., in 1898. A 113°F reading was also taken at Catarina, Texas in April 1984.”

Also impressive is the fact that 99 monthly record-high temperatures were set or tied during the past week, along with 22 monthly record-high minimum temperatures. (These records and more can be looked up using Climate Central’s Record Temperature Tracker.)

This warm wave follows the warmest March on record in the Lower 48 states — when more than 15,000 warm-temperature records were broken during a lengthy heat wave that affected nearly every state east of the Rockies.

The heat has been especially noteworthy in two places known for their sizzling weather during the summer months: Phoenix and Las Vegas. On April 22, Phoenix tied its all-time record-high temperature for the month when the temperature reached 105°F. Yuma, Ariz., hit 106°F on the same day, a record daily high for that location. Phoenix also set warm minimum temperature records. The low temperature at Phoenix Sky Harbor International Airport only fell to 74 degrees on April 23, beating the old record for the date of 71, set in 1997.

As for Las Vegas, the high temperature of 99°F on April 22 tied that city’s all-time high-temperature record for April. This was also the earliest 99 degree reading on record, occurring two days earlier than the previous record of April 24, 1946.

 

March was the warmest such month on record in the Lower 48 states. 

More record warmth was expected Tuesday from northeast Montana southward to the Plains states, with conditions heating up in Texas during the next few days. A storm system is expected to move into the West during the next few days, bringing cooler temperatures, along with rain and mountain snows.

So far this year, there have been more than 26,000 warm-temperature records set or tied in the U.S., compared to about 2,600 cold-temperature records set or tied. In recent years, record daily highs have been outpacing record daily lows in a pattern that has been shown to be inconsistent with natural climate variability alone. 

So far, this year is consistent with that trend, since daily record highs have been far outpacing daily record lows, with an even more lopsided picture for monthly record highs compared to monthly record lows. If the climate were not warming, one would expect the longer-term ratios to be, on average, closer to 1-to-1.

CISPA Critics Warn Cybersecurity Bill Will Increase Domestic Surveillance and Violate Privacy Rights

CISPA Critics Warn Cybersecurity Bill Will Increase Domestic Surveillance and Violate Privacy Rights

Laptop user

As it heads toward a House vote, critics say the Cyber Intelligence Sharing and Protection Act (CISPA) would allow private internet companies like Google, Facebook and Microsoft to hand over troves of confidential customer records and communications to the National Security Agency, FBI and Department of Homeland Security, effectively legalizing a secret domestic surveillance program already run by the NSA. Backers say the measure is needed to help private firms crackdown on foreign entities — including the Chinese and Russian governments — committing online economic espionage. The bill has faced widespread opposition from online privacy advocates and even the Obama administration, which has threatened a veto. “CISPA … will create an exception to all existing privacy laws so that companies can share very sensitive and personal information directly with the government, including military agencies like the National Security Agency,” says Michelle Richardson, legislative counsel for the American Civil Liberties Union. “Once the government has it, they can repurpose it and use it for a number of things, including an undefined national security use.” [Transcript to come. Check back soon.]

Filed under  Domestic Surveillance, ACLU
Guest:

Michelle Richardson, legislative counsel for the American Civil Liberties Union.

Rush Transcript

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Transcript

JUAN GONZÁLEZ: A legislative battle has erupted on Capitol Hill over a controversial House bill that critics say would allow private internet companies to hand over troves of confidential customer records and communications to the National Security Agency and other agencies. In a letter on Monday, 18 Democratic House members warned that unless specific limitations were put in place, the bill, quote, “would, for the first time, grant non-civilian federal agencies, such as the National Security Agency, unfettered access to information about Americans’ internet activities and allow those agencies to use that information for virtually any purpose.” The bill is titled the Cyber Intelligence Sharing and Protection Act, or simply CISPA.

Backers of the legislation say it is needed to help private companies crack down on foreign entities—including the Chinese and Russian governments—committing online economic espionage that is stealing trade secrets from U.S. corporations and the government. But the bill has faced widespread criticism from online privacy advocates and even the Obama administration.

AMY GOODMAN: On Thursday, the White House threatened to veto the legislation, saying, quote, “The sharing of information must be conducted in a manner that preserves Americans’ privacy, data confidentiality and civil liberties and recognizes the civilian nature of cyberspace. Cybersecurity and privacy are not mutually exclusive,” they said. Critics also say the bill would essentially legalize a secret domestic surveillance program already being run by the National Security Agency.

Last week, a former top NSA official appeared on Democracy Now! to give his first TV interview. William Binney said domestic surveillance is already expanding under the Obama administration.

WILLIAM BINNEY: Actually, I think the surveillance has increased. In fact, I would suggest that they’ve assembled on the order of 20 trillion transactions about U.S. citizens with other U.S. citizens.

AMY GOODMAN: How many?

WILLIAM BINNEY: Twenty trillion.

AMY GOODMAN: Where do you get the number 20 trillion?

WILLIAM BINNEY: Just by the numbers of telecoms, it appears to me, from the questions that CNET posed to them in 2006, and they published the names and how—what the responses were. I looked at that and said that anybody that equivocated was participating, and then estimated from that the numbers of transactions. That, by the way, estimate only was involving phone calls and emails. It didn’t involve any queries on the net or any assembles—other—any financial transactions or credit card stuff, if they’re assembling that. I do not know that.

AMY GOODMAN: National Security Agency whistleblower William Binney. To see the full interview with him, you can go to our website at democracynow.org.

We’re joined now by two guests. Michelle Richardson is with us in Washington, D.C., legislative counsel for the American Civil Liberties Union. Jacob Appelbaum is back with us again here in Democracy Now!’s studios in New York, computer security researcher, developer and advocate for the Tor Project, a system that enables its users to communicate anonymously on the internet.

Michelle, let’s begin with you. Talk about this legislation, this bill that is expected to be voted on this week, debates beginning today.

MICHELLE RICHARDSON: CISPA, the bill that will come up later today and probably be voted on tomorrow, will create an exception to all existing privacy laws so that companies can share very sensitive and personal information directly with the government, including military agencies like the National Security Agency. And then, once the government has it, they can repurpose it and use it for a number of things, including an undefined national security use. The violations of privacy are just amazing under this bill, and it’s even invoked a veto threat from the Obama administration.

JUAN GONZÁLEZ: And specifically in terms of the new powers that this grant, what does this do to existing laws that protect the privacy of American citizens and requires the government to get even FISA warrants when it wants to actually do surveillance in particular situations?

MICHELLE RICHARDSON: Right. Current law now creates a presumption of privacy in our phone calls, emails and internet records, and they say that companies have to keep them private unless there’s an emergency or the government serves them with a subpoena or warrant. And in one fell swoop, this bill will say that these privacy laws simply no longer apply. So, all of the process afforded under those laws, the protections, the congressional reporting, the role of a judge, all of that is swept away in one bill and will allow companies to decide how much and what type of information they want to turn over to the government. And it can include incredibly sensitive information, like the content of emails or internet use history. There’s no obligation on the companies to extract the personally identifiable information. And that’s the important thing to remember here, that information sharing may be a good thing. There are ways that it could be done, where companies would share technical data with the government that wouldn’t invade privacy. But that’s not what we’re talking about. This bill is incredibly broad and will allow the companies to turn over even the personally identifiable information.

AMY GOODMAN: The chief author of CISPA, Republican Congress Member Mike Rogers, the chair of the House Intelligence Committee and a former FBI agent, when he introduced the bill in November, predicted privacy advocates would oppose the legislation.

REP. MIKE ROGERS: I expect that some will allege that the bill creates a new wide-ranging government surveillance program. This is false. The bill has nothing to do with government surveillance. It simply provides clear authority to the private sector, not the government, to identify and share cyber threat information. And remember what the threat is: up to a trillion dollars a year in lost intellectual property. The one thing that has set America apart from every other nation is our innovation in our intellectual property. If we lose that game, we lose this fight.

Moreover, the bill only permits sharing of cybersecurity threat information when a company is engaged in the protection of its own systems or networks or those of the corporate customer. Our bill does not require anyone to provide information to the government. Any sharing of information with the government is completely voluntary every step of the way. A government surveillance program that doesn’t require any information privileged to the government shouldn’t be a very good surveillance program. Now, I couldn’t believe it. As an old FBI guy, we would say that is an unworkable event.

AMY GOODMAN: House Intelligence chair, Michigan’s Republican Congress Member Mike Rogers, unveiling the legislation at a meeting hosted by the National Cable and Telecommunications Association, a lobbying powerhouse. The association’s president, Michael Powell, praised the legislation. Powell is the former chair of the Federal Communications Commission and the son of former secretary of state, General Colin Powell.

MICHAEL POWELL: It’s not an exaggeration to say, when it comes to cybersecurity, what you don’t know can hurt you. And one of the most valuable aspects of this legislation is it deals with the most critical problem when industries and government face a challenge like this: inadequate information flow. You can’t fix what you don’t know. You can’t work in cooperation and coordination with others when you’re not able to effectively share information. I think the legislation we’ll hear about today takes a dramatic and important step.

AMY GOODMAN: That was Michael Powell, formerly chair of the FCC. Michelle Richardson, your response?

MICHELLE RICHARDSON: Well, the advocacy and civil liberties community is united in their opposition to this bill. We all believe that this is an unjustifiable infringement on privacy. And while the sponsors speak about limitations, they’re just not in the bill. We’re being asked to just trust the companies and the NSA to work in secret and protect our privacy. And we know from the warrantless wiretapping scandal after 9/11, when these groups are allowed to work in private like this, they’re going to invade our privacy.

JUAN GONZÁLEZ: Well, Michelle Richardson, there’s been apparently a series of amendments proposed, some of them by liberal Democrats like John Lewis and others who are hoping to make portions of this legislation more palatable. Your sense of these attempts at soothing the rough edges of this legislation, but leaving it essentially intact?

MICHELLE RICHARDSON: Well, last night, the House Rules Committee decided which amendments would actually get a vote on the floor tomorrow, and they decided that amendments offered by Mr. Lewis or Jan Schakowsky or some of the other progressive members simply will not get a floor vote. And these were incredibly important amendments that would have squarely made Congress decide whether the military and the NSA would be able to collect internet records on innocent Americans. But Congress will not be able to vote on that this week, and instead they’ll just have to vote no on the entire bill, to send the message that they don’t want the military surveilling internet.

AMY GOODMAN: Interestingly, the legislation was co-sponsored by Democratic Congress Member Dutch Ruppersberger, the ranking member of the House Intelligence Committee. He has denied the bill would increase surveillance.

REP. DUTCH RUPPERSBERGER: What the bill basically does is—in 1947, there was a bill, the intelligence bill, that really created what the rules or regulations were for CIA, NSA and all of the intelligence agencies. And what this bill basically does is allow a government entity—in most situations, the NSA here—it allows them to give information to the private sector. The 1947 bill says, if it’s classified information, you cannot give it to the other side. And how the bill really came together was this DIB pilot program. It’s a pilot program that allowed the NSA, working with the providers, the—I believe it was AT&T, it was Verizon and Qwest—and allowed them to give that information over to the private companies to work to protect themselves. That worked extremely well. And as a result of that, we kind of—we kind of modeled our bill after that.

AMY GOODMAN: Now, interestingly, the Obama administration at this point says that they would veto this, but that’s Democratic Congress Member Dutch Ruppersberger. And among those who are supporting the legislation are major companies, ones that have actually opposed SOPA, the Stop Online Privacy Act—for example, Google, and then there’s Facebook and these other companies. What do they have to gain, and what are the companies that are supporting it?

MICHELLE RICHARDSON: Last I heard, all of the major corporations that are involved with the internet are supporting this CISPA, the Rogers bill. And frankly, they’re going to make out like bandits. Under this bill, if they share our private information, they get complete protection from liability. Consumers will no longer be able to assert their privacy rights that exist under current law and hold them accountable in court. They can’t be prosecuted by the government like they currently can for illegal wiretapping or sharing information. They’re getting FOIA exemptions, so that no one will ever know about these breaches or the things that they share with the government. They’re really walking away here with maximum flexibility to share our personal information with minimum accountability and no enforcement to make sure that they are not oversharing and infringing on our privacy.

JUAN GONZÁLEZ: Well, Michelle Richardson, what are the prospects of this legislation passing, first in the House, and obviously then it would also have to pass in the Senate? And how would the White House react to its possible passage?

MICHELLE RICHARDSON: Well, we were very, very pleased to see that the Obama administration issued a veto threat yesterday and said, in very clear terms, that they believe that control of the internet needs to remain civilian, and the military shouldn’t be routinely collecting information on innocent people. We expect the bill to probably pass tomorrow, but we expect a strong no vote. And even just a month ago, if this bill had been brought to the floor, it probably would have sailed through without much amendment at all. But the online organizing and the organizing by the advocacy community over the last month has really changed the game, and the members are more educated. And I think we’re going to see a very strong no vote from both Democrats and Republicans tomorrow.

AMY GOODMAN: Michelle Richardson—

MICHELLE RICHARDSON: Now, the Senate has its own alternative and is slated to vote on their bill in May. And it does include more protections, so it will come down to a conference between the House and the Senate to see which bill prevails.

AMY GOODMAN: Michelle Richardson, legislative counsel for the American Civil Liberties Union. When we come back, Jacob Appelbaum is back with us, computer security researcher. This is Democracy Now! Back in a minute.

Fukushima: A Nuclear War without a War: The Unspoken Crisis of Worldwide Nuclear Radiation


Fukushima: A Nuclear War without a War

The Unspoken Crisis of Worldwide Nuclear Radiation

Michel Chossudovsky (Editor)

I-Book No. 3, January 25  2012
 

Global Research’s Online Interactive I-Book Reader brings together, in the form of chapters, a collection of Global Research feature articles and videos, including debate and analysis, on a broad theme or subject matter. 

In this Interactive Online I-Book we bring to the attention of our readers an important collection of articles, reports and video material on the Fukushima nuclear catastrophe and its impacts (scroll down for the Table of Contents).

To consult our Online Interactive I-Book Reader Series, click here.


INTRODUCTION

The World is at a critical crossroads. The Fukushima disaster in Japan has brought to the forefront the dangers of Worldwide nuclear radiation.

The crisis in Japan has been described as “a nuclear war without a war”. In the words of renowned novelist Haruki Murakami:

“This time no one dropped a bomb on us … We set the stage, we committed the crime with our own hands, we are destroying our own lands, and we are destroying our own lives.”

Nuclear radiation –which threatens life on planet earth– is not front page news in comparison to the most insignificant issues of public concern, including the local level crime scene or the tabloid gossip reports on Hollywood celebrities. 

While the long-term repercussions of the Fukushima Daiichi nuclear disaster are yet to be fully assessed, they are far more serious than those pertaining to the 1986 Chernobyl disaster in the Ukraine, which resulted in almost one million deaths (New Book Concludes – Chernobyl death toll: 985,000, mostly from cancer Global Research, September 10, 2010, See also Matthew Penney and Mark Selden  The Severity of the Fukushima Daiichi Nuclear Disaster: Comparing Chernobyl and Fukushima, Global Research, May 25, 2011)

 Moreover, while all eyes were riveted on the Fukushima Daiichi plant, news coverage both in Japan and internationally failed to fully acknowledge the impacts of a second catastrophe at TEPCO’s (Tokyo Electric Power Co  Inc) Fukushima Daini nuclear power plant.

The shaky political consensus both in Japan, the U.S. and Western Europe is that the crisis at Fukushima has been contained.

The realties, however, are otherwise. Fukushima 3 was leaking unconfirmed amounts of plutonium. According to Dr. Helen Caldicott, “one millionth of a gram of plutonium, if inhaled can cause cancer”.  

An opinion poll in May 2011 confirmed that more than 80 per cent of the Japanese population do not believe the government’s information regarding the nuclear crisis. (quoted in Sherwood Ross, Fukushima: Japan’s Second Nuclear Disaster, Global Research, November 10, 2011)

The Impacts in Japan

The Japanese government has been obliged to acknowledge that “the severity rating of its nuclear crisis … matches that of the 1986 Chernobyl disaster”. In a bitter irony, however, this tacit admission by the Japanese authorities has proven to been part of  the cover-up of a significantly larger catastrophe, resulting in a process of global nuclear radiation and contamination:

“While Chernobyl was an enormous unprecedented disaster, it only occurred at one reactor and rapidly melted down. Once cooled, it was able to be covered with a concrete sarcophagus that was constructed with 100,000 workers. There are a staggering 4400 tons of nuclear fuel rods at Fukushima, which greatly dwarfs the total size of radiation sources at Chernobyl.” ( Extremely High Radiation Levels in Japan: University Researchers Challenge Official Data, Global Research, April 11, 2011)

Fukushima in the wake of the Tsunami, March 2011

Worldwide Contamination

The dumping of highly radioactive water into the Pacific Ocean constitutes a potential trigger to a process of global radioactive contamination. Radioactive elements have not only been detected in the food chain in Japan, radioactive rain water has been recorded in California:

“Hazardous radioactive elements being released in the sea and air around Fukushima accumulate at each step of various food chains (for example, into algae, crustaceans, small fish, bigger fish, then humans; or soil, grass, cow’s meat and milk, then humans). Entering the body, these elements – called internal emitters – migrate to specific organs such as the thyroid, liver, bone, and brain, continuously irradiating small volumes of cells with high doses of alpha, beta and/or gamma radiation, and over many years often induce cancer”. (Helen Caldicott, Fukushima: Nuclear Apologists Play Shoot the Messenger on Radiation, The Age,  April 26, 2011)

While the spread of radiation to the West Coast of North America was casually acknowledged, the early press reports (AP and Reuters) “quoting diplomatic sources” stated that only “tiny amounts of radioactive particles have arrived in California but do not pose a threat to human health.”

“According to the news agencies, the unnamed sources have access to data from a network of measuring stations run by the United Nations’ Comprehensive Test Ban Treaty Organization. … 

… Greg Jaczko, chair of the U.S. Nuclear Regulatory Commission, told White House reporters on Thursday (March 17) that his experts “don’t see any concern from radiation levels that could be harmful here in the United States or any of the U.S. territories”.

The spread of radiation. March 2011

Public Health Disaster. Economic Impacts

What prevails is a well organized camouflage. The public health disaster in Japan, the contamination of water, agricultural land and the food chain, not to mention the broader economic and social implications, have neither been fully acknowledged nor addressed in a comprehensive and meaningful fashion by the Japanese authorities. 

 Japan as a nation state has been destroyed. Its landmass and territorial waters are contaminated. Part of the country is uninhabitable. High levels of radiation have been recorded in the Tokyo metropolitan area, which has a population of  39 million (2010) (more than the population of Canada, circa 34 million (2010)) There are indications that the food chain is contaminated throughout Japan:

Radioactive cesium exceeding the legal limit was detected in tea made in a factory in Shizuoka City, more than 300 kilometers away from the Fukushima Daiichi nuclear power plant. Shizuoka Prefecture is one of the most famous tea producing areas in Japan.

A tea distributor in Tokyo reported to the prefecture that it detected high levels of radioactivity in the tea shipped from the city. The prefecture ordered the factory to refrain from shipping out the product. After the accident at the Fukushima nuclear power plant, radioactive contamination of tea leaves and processed tea has been found over a wide area around Tokyo. (See 5 More Companies Detect Radiation In Their Tea Above Legal Limits Over 300 KM From Fukushima, June 15, 2011)

Japan’s industrial and manufacturing base is prostrate. Japan is no longer a leading industrial power. The country’s exports have plummeted. The Tokyo government has announced its first trade deficit since 1980.

While the business media has narrowly centered on the impacts of power outages and energy shortages on the pace of productive activity, the broader issue pertaining to the outright radioactive contamination of the country’s infrastructure and industrial base is a “scientific taboo” (i.e the radiation of industrial plants, machinery and equipment, buildings, roads, etc). A report released in January 2012 points to the nuclear contamination of building materials used in the construction industry, in cluding roads and residential buildings throughout Japan.(See  FUKUSHIMA: Radioactive Houses and Roads in Japan. Radioactive Building Materials Sold to over 200 Construction Companies, January 2012)

A “coverup report” by the Ministry of Economy, Trade and Industry (May 2011), entitled Economic Impact of the Great East Japan Earthquake and Current Status of Recovery”  presents “Economic Recovery” as a fait accompli. It also brushes aside the issue of radiation. The impacts of nuclear radiation on the work force and the country’s industrial base are not mentioned. The report states that the distance between Tokyo -Fukushima Dai-ichi  is of the order of 230 km (about 144 miles) and that the levels of radiation in Tokyo are lower than in Hong Kong and New York City.(Ministry of Economy, Trade and Industry, Impact of the Great East Japan Earthquake and Current Status of Recovery, p.15). This statement is made without corroborating evidence and in overt contradiction with independent radiation readings in Tokyo (se map below). In recent developments, Sohgo Security Services Co. is launching a lucrative “radiation measurement service targeting households in Tokyo and four surrounding prefectures”.

 


A map of citizens’ measured radiation levels shows radioactivity is distributed in a complex pattern reflecting the mountainous terrain and the shifting winds across a broad area of Japan north of Tokyo which is in the center of the of bottom of the map.”

“Radiation limits begin to be exceeded at just above 0.1 microsieverts/ hour blue. Red is about fifty times the civilian radiation limit at 5.0 microsieverts/hour. Because children are much more sensitive than adults, these results are a great concern for parents of young children in potentially affected areas.

SOURCE: Science Magazine


The fundamental question is whether the vast array of industrial goods and components “Made in Japan” — including hi tech components, machinery, electronics, motor vehicles, etc — and exported Worldwide are contaminated? Were this to be the case, the entire East and Southeast Asian industrial base –which depends heavily on Japanese components and industrial technology– would be affected. The potential impacts on international trade would be farreaching. In this regard, in January, Russian officials confiscated irradiated Japanese automobiles and autoparts in the port of Vladivostok for sale in the Russian Federation. Needless to say, incidents of this nature in a global competitive environment, could lead to the demise of the Japanese automobile industry which is already in crisis. 

While most of the automotive industry is in central Japan, Nissan’s engine factory in Iwaki city is 42 km from the Fukushima Daiichi plant. Is the Nissan work force affected? Is the engine plant contaminated? The plant is within about 10 to 20 km of the government’s “evacuation zone” from which some 200,000 people were evacuated (see map below).

 
Nuclear Energy and Nuclear War

The crisis in Japan has also brought into the open the unspoken relationship between nuclear energy and nuclear war.

Nuclear energy is not a civilian economic activity. It is an appendage of the nuclear weapons industry which is controlled by the so-called defense contractors. The powerful corporate interests behind nuclear energy and nuclear weapons overlap.

In Japan at the height of the disaster, “the nuclear industry and government agencies [were] scrambling to prevent the discovery of atomic-bomb research facilities hidden inside Japan’s civilian nuclear power plants”.1  (See Yoichi Shimatsu, Secret Weapons Program Inside Fukushima Nuclear Plant? Global Research,  April 12, 2011)

It should be noted that the complacency of both the media and the governments to the hazards of nuclear radiation pertains to the nuclear energy industry as well as to to use of nuclear weapons. In both cases, the devastating health impacts of nuclear radiation are casually denied. Tactical nuclear weapons with an explosive capacity of up to six times a Hiroshima bomb are labelled by the Pentagon as “safe for the surrounding civilian population”.

No concern has been expressed at the political level as to the likely consequences of a US-NATO-Israel attack on Iran, using “safe for civilians” tactical nuclear weapons against a non-nuclear state.

Such an action would result in “the unthinkable”: a nuclear holocaust over a large part of the Middle East and Central Asia. A nuclear nightmare, however, would occur even if nuclear weapons were not used. The bombing of Iran’s nuclear facilities using conventional weapons would contribute to unleashing another Fukushima type disaster with extensive radioactive fallout. (For further details See Michel Chossudovsky, Towards a World War III Scenario, The Dangers of Nuclear War, Global Research, Montreal, 2011)

The Online Interactive I-Book Reader on Fukushima: A Nuclear War without a War

In view of the official cover-up and media disinformation campaign, the contents of the articles and video reports in this Online Interactive Reader have not trickled down to to the broader public. (See Table of contents below)

This Online Interactive Reader on Fukushima contains a combination of analytical and scientific articles, video reports as well as shorter news reports and corroborating data. 

Part I focusses on The Fukushima Nuclear Disaster: How it Happened? Part II  pertains to The Devastating Health and Social Impacts in Japan. Part III  centers on the “Hidden Nuclear Catastrophe”, namely the cover-up by the Japanese government and the corporate media. Part IV focusses on the issue of  Worlwide Nuclear Radiation and Part V reviews the Implications of the Fukushima disaster for the Global Nuclear Energy Industry.

In the face of ceaseless media disinformation, this Global Research Online I-Book on the dangers of global nuclear radiation is intended to break the media vacuum and raise public awareness, while also pointing to the complicity of  the governments, the media and the nuclear industry. 

We call upon our readers to spread the word.

We invite university, college and high school teachers to make this Interactive Reader on Fukushima available to their students.

Michel Chossudovsky, January 25, 2012

GLOBAL SPYING- WASHINGTON’S “WEAPONIZED DATA” SYSTEM

By Tom Burghardt
Global Research, April 23, 2012

From driftnet surveillance to data mining and link analysis, the secret state has weaponized our data, “criminal evidence, ready for use in a trial,” as Cryptohippie famously warned.

No longer the exclusive domain of intelligence agencies, a highly-profitable Surveillance-Industrial Complex emerged in the 1980s with the deployment of the NSA-GCHQ ECHELON intercept system. As investigate journalist Nicky Hager revealed in CovertAction Quarterly back in 1996:

The ECHELON system is not designed to eavesdrop on a particular individual’s e-mail or fax link. Rather, the system works by indiscriminately intercepting very large quantities of communications and using computers to identify and extract messages of interest from the mass of unwanted ones. A chain of secret interception facilities has been established around the world to tap into all the major components of the international telecommunications networks. Some monitor communications satellites, others land-based communications networks, and others radio communications. ECHELON links together all these facilities, providing the US and its allies with the ability to intercept a large proportion of the communications on the planet.

With the exponential growth of fiber optic and wireless networks, the mass of data which can be “mined” for “actionable intelligence,” covering everything from eavesdropping on official enemies to blanket surveillance of dissidents is now part of the landscape: no more visible to the average citizen than ornamental shrubbery surrounding a strip mall.

That process will become even more ubiquitous. As James Bamford pointed out in Wired Magazine, “the Pentagon is attempting to expand its worldwide communications network, known as the Global Information Grid, to handle yottabytes (10 to the 24th bytes) of data. (A yottabyte is a septillion bytes–so large that no one has yet coined a term for the next higher magnitude.)”

“It needs that capacity because, according to a recent report by Cisco, global Internet traffic will quadruple from 2010 to 2015,” Bamford reported, “reaching 966 exabytes per year. (A million exabytes equal a yottabyte.) … Thus, the NSA’s need for a 1-million-square-foot data storehouse. Should the agency ever fill the Utah center with a yottabyte of information, it would be equal to about 500 quintillion (500,000,000,000,000,000,000) pages of text.”

A former top NSA official turned whistleblower, William Binney, who resigned in 2001 shortly after the agency stood-up the Bush regime’s warrantless wiretapping programs (now greatly expanded under Hope and Change™ huckster Barack Obama), “held his thumb and forefinger close together” and told Bamford, “We are that far from a turnkey totalitarian state.”

Last week, Binney said on Democracy Now when queried whether there were any differences between the Bush and Obama administrations, “Actually, I think the surveillance has increased. In fact, I would suggest that they’ve assembled on the order of 20 trillion transactions about U.S. citizens with other U.S. citizens.”

Add to that the Transportation Security Administration’s invasion of “travel by other means,” as Jennifer Abel pointed out in The Guardian, through the agency’s usurpation of “jurisdiction over all forms of mass transit,” and it should be clear to Americans (though it isn’t) that there is no way of escaping the secret state’s callous trampling of our rights.

Commenting, Salon’s Glenn Greenwald pointed out that the “domestic NSA-led Surveillance State which Frank Church so stridently warned about has obviously come to fruition.”

“The way to avoid its grip is simply to acquiesce to the nation’s most powerful factions, to obediently remain within the permitted boundaries of political discourse and activism.”

“Accepting that bargain,” Greenwald noted, “enables one to maintain the delusion of freedom–‘he who does not move does not notice his chains,’ observed Rosa Luxemburg–but the true measure of political liberty is whether one is free to make a different choice.”

But in a militarized Empire such as ours the only “choice” is to shut up, keep your head down–or else.

‘Lower Your Shields and Surrender Your Ships’

Militarist solutions to intractable social contradictions, the oft-maligned class struggle, do not appear out of the blue. Indeed, NSA’s ECHELON system, the template for STELLAR WIND and the agency’s associated email and web search database known as PINWALE, were technological responses by Western elites to challenges posed by the “excess of democracy” decried by Samuel Huntington and his cohorts in The Crisis of Democracy, published by the Rockefeller-funded Trilateral Commission.

Social critic Andrew Gavin Marshall observed that for Huntington and the right-wing ideologues who mounted an intellectual counterattack against the democratic “excesses” of the 1960s, the “massive wave of resistance, rebellion, protest, activism and direct action by entire sectors of the general population which had for decades, if not centuries, been largely oppressed and ignored by the institutional power structure of society,” were “terrifying.”

Fast forward to today. As the global economic crisis deepens and hundreds of millions of people worldwide reject the “austerity” boondoggles of the financial sharks who brought on the crisis through massive frauds disguised as “investment opportunities,” our corporatist masters are fighting back and have turned to police state methods to prop-up their illegitimate rule.

Nor should it surprise us, as George Ciccariello-Maher pointed out in CounterPunch in the wake of last summer’s London “riots,” a mass response to police murder (coming soon to an “urban exclusion zone” near you!): “Irrational, uncontrollable, impermeable to logic and unpredictable in its movements, these undesirables have once again ruined the party for everyone, as they have done from Paris 1789 to Caracas 1989. In Fanon’s inimitable words: ‘the masses, without waiting for the chairs to be placed around the negotiating table, take matters into their own hands and start burning…'”

Call it the great fear of those lording it over the slaves down on the global plantation!

Combining attributes of Jeremy Bentham’s “Panopticon” and George Orwell’s ubiquitous “Big Brother,” the National Security State, as it works to stave-off its own well-deserved collapse, seeks to root out and marginalize “dangerous” individuals and ideologies thereby “inoculating” the body politic from what were euphemistically called in the halcyon days of J. Edgar’s COINTELPRO operations, “subversive elements.”

It matters little whether today’s “usual suspects” are landless peasants, displaced workers, investigative journalists, civil libertarians or innocent citizens mistakenly caught in one dragnet or another: “threats” will be “neutralized” or more pointedly, in the evocative language employed by spooks: “Terminated with extreme prejudice.”

Operating alongside tried and methods–police repression and violence–contemporary crackdowns are guided by “robust situational awareness” gleaned from the wealth of personal data stored on multiple digital devices (the spies in our pockets) and in huge databases. As Cryptohippie averred: “An electronic police state is quiet, even unseen. All of its legal actions are supported by abundant evidence. It looks pristine.”

“When we produced our first Electronic Police State report,” the privacy professionals wrote, “the top ten nations were of two types:

1. Those that had the will to spy on every citizen, but lacked ability.

2. Those who had the ability, but were restrained in will.

But as they revealed in their 2010 National Rankings, “This is changing: The able have become willing and their traditional restraints have failed.” The key developments driving the global panopticon forward are the following:

• The USA has negated their Constitution’s fourth amendment in the name of protection and in the name of “wars” against terror, drugs and cyber attacks.

• The UK is aggressively building the world of 1984 in the name of stopping “anti-social” activities. Their populace seems unable or unwilling to restrain the government.

• France and the EU have given themselves over to central bureaucratic control.

As Marxist critic and Situationist troublemaker Guy Debord pointed out decades ago in The Society of the Spectacle, “the spectacle is not the inevitable consequence of some supposedly natural technological development. On the contrary, the society of the spectacle is a form that chooses its own technological content.”

Mark that well.

Rejecting the orthodoxies and received wisdom of his day, Debord argued that “The reigning economic system is a vicious circle of isolation. Its technologies are based on isolation, and they contribute to that same isolation. From automobiles to television, the goods that the spectacular system chooses to produce also serve it as weapons for constantly reinforcing the conditions that engender ‘lonely crowds.’ With ever-increasing concreteness the spectacle recreates its own presuppositions.”

It is again worth noting that the much-vaunted “global village” which sprung to life with the widespread deployment of the internet in the 1990s, as a profit-center for the giant telecoms and a spy machine for the secret state, was, after all, a casual by-product of the Pentagon’s quest for a wartime digital communications system.

But now that every facet of daily life has become a war theater, what are we to make of the electronic walled gardens offered for sale by Apple, Facebook and Google, replete with their multitude of proprietary apps which, like Bentham’s “panopticon,” have become prisons of our own choosing?

Ponder Debord’s rigorous theorems in this light; substitute “cell phone” or “GPS” for “automobile,” and “internet” for “television” and it becomes clear pretty quickly that unbeknownst to the militarist inventors of the “digital highway” they had stumbled upon the perfect means for enabling a global control grid.

As Debord averred: “If the spectacle, considered in the limited sense of the ‘mass media’ that are its most glaring superficial manifestation, seems to be invading society in the form of a mere technical apparatus, it should be understood that this apparatus is in no way neutral and that it has been developed in accordance with the spectacle’s internal dynamics.”

“Internal dynamics” geared only towards its own survival and reproduction come hell or high water. Endless wars on “terror,” “drugs,” “crime,” take your pick. Prison-Industrial Complexes? Genetically-engineered plagues? Ecological collapse? Step right this way! There’s an app for that and much, much more!

Indeed, “if the social needs of the age in which such technologies are developed can be met only through their mediation, if the administration of this society and all contact between people has become totally dependent on these means of instantaneous communication, it is because this ‘communication’ is essentially unilateral,” that is, “the product of the social division of labor that is both the chief instrument of class rule and the concentrated expression of all social divisions.”

Keep in mind that Debord’s seminal text was penned in 1967, long before the wet dreams of securocrats had been brought to life like Frankenstein’s monster. Once a disquieting and uncanny shape looming on some far-off, dystopian horizon, the world of smart phones and dumbed-down people is, simply put, an Americanized Borg cube where “resistance” is always “futile.”

The question is, in our fallen Republic does anyone even notice?

Tom Burghardt is a researcher and activist based in the San Francisco Bay Area. In addition to publishing in Covert Action Quarterly and Global Research, he is a Contributing Editor with Cyrano’s Journal Today. His articles can be read on Dissident Voice, Pacific Free Press, Uncommon Thought Journal, and the whistleblowing website WikiLeaks. He is the editor of Police State America: U.S. Military “Civil Disturbance” Planning, distributed by AK Press and has contributed to the new book from Global Research, The Global Economic Crisis: The Great Depression of the XXI Century.

Warm Ocean Currents Eroding Antarctic Ice Shelves

CAMBRIDGE, UK, April 25, 2012 (ENS) – Warm ocean currents flowing beneath ice shelves are the main cause of recent ice loss from Antarctica, concludes a study by an international research team published today. The finding brings scientists closer to providing reliable projections of future sea level rise.

Using measurements from NASA’s Ice, Cloud, and land Elevation Satellite, ICESat, in combination with computer models, the researchers were able to distinguish between warm ocean currents thawing the ice sheets from below and warm air melting them from above.

Hamish Pritchard (Photo courtesy British Antarctic Survey)

“We can lose an awful lot of ice to the sea without ever having summers warm enough to make the snow on top of the glaciers melt,” said lead author Hamish Pritchard of the British Antarctic Survey based in Cambridge, UK. “The oceans can do all the work from below.”

“What’s really interesting is just how sensitive these glaciers seem to be,” said Pritchard. “Some ice shelves are thinning by a few meters a year and, in response, the glaciers drain billions of tons of ice into the sea. This supports the idea that ice shelves are important in slowing down the glaciers that feed them, controlling the loss of ice from the Antarctic ice sheet.”

Researchers used 4.5 million measurements made by a laser instrument mounted on ICESat to map the changing thickness of almost all the floating ice shelves around Antarctica, revealing the pattern of ice-shelf melt across the continent.

Of the 54 ice shelves mapped, 20 are being melted by warm ocean currents, most of which are in West Antarctica. There, inland glaciers flowing down to the coast and feeding into these thinning ice shelves have accelerated, draining more ice into the sea and contributing to sea-level rise.

This ocean-driven thinning is responsible for the most widespread and rapid ice losses in West Antarctica and the majority of Antarctic ice sheet loss during the five-year period of the study, October 2003 to October 2008, the study concludes.

The thicknesses of western Antarctic ice shelves are indicated by color; red is thicker than 550 meters, while blue is thinner than 200 meters. (Image courtesy NASA/Goddard CGI Lab)

Published in the journal “Nature,” the study was carried out by scientists from the British Antarctic Survey, Utrecht University in Utrecht, Netherlands, the University of California in San Diego and the nonprofit research institute Earth and Space Research in Corvallis, Oregon.

To map the changing thickness of almost all the floating ice shelves around Antarctica, the team used a time series of 4.5 million surface height measurements taken by a laser instrument mounted on ICESat.

They measured how the ice shelf height changed over time and ran computer models to discard changes in ice thickness because of natural snow accumulation and compaction. The researchers also used a tide model that eliminated height changes caused by tides raising and lowering the ice shelves.

“This study demonstrates the power of space-based, laser altimetry for understanding Earth processes,” said Tom Wagner, cryosphere program scientist at NASA Headquarters in Washington.”

“Coupled with NASA’s portfolio of other ice sheet research using data from our GRACE mission, satellite radars and aircraft, we get a comprehensive view of ice sheet change that improves estimates of sea level rise,” said Wagner.

Previous studies used satellite radar data to measure the evolution of ice shelves and glaciers, but laser measurements are more precise in detecting changes in ice shelf thickness through time. This is especially true in coastal areas. Steeper slopes at the grounding line, where floating ice shelves connect with the landmass, cause problems for lower-resolution radar altimeters.

ICESat was the first satellite designed to use laser altimetry to study the Earth’s polar regions. It operated from 2003 to 2009. Its successor, ICESat-2, is scheduled for launch in 2016.

“This study demonstrates the urgent need for ICESat-2 to get into space,” said Jay Zwally, ICESat project scientist at NASA’s Goddard Space Flight Center in Greenbelt, Maryland. “We have limited information on the changes in polar regions caused by climate change. Nothing can look at these changes like satellite measurements do.”

The research links changes in wind patterns with the observed increase in melting that occurs on the underside of a glacier or ice shelf and glacier acceleration.

The Wilkins ice shelf on the Antarctic Peninsula (Photo courtesy British Antarctic Survey)

“Studies have shown Antarctic winds have changed because of changes in climate,” Pritchard said. “This has affected the strength and direction of ocean currents. As a result warm water is funneled beneath the floating ice. These studies and our new results suggest Antarctica’s glaciers are responding rapidly to a changing climate.”

A different pattern is evident on the Antarctic Peninsula, the long stretch of land pointing towards South America. The study found thinning of the largest ice shelf on the peninsula can be explained by warm summer winds directly melting the snow on the ice shelf surfaces.

The patterns of widespread ocean-driven melting and summer melting on the Antarctic Peninsula can be attributed to changing wind patterns.

This research is part of international efforts to improve understanding of the interactions between ice and climate in order to improve the reliability of sea-level rise projections.

Professor David Vaughan, leader of the EU-funded ice2sea program, said, “This study shows very clearly why the Antarctic ice sheet is currently losing ice, which is a major advance. But the real significance is that it also shows the key to predicting how the ice sheet will change in the future is in understanding the oceans. Perhaps we should not only be looking to the skies above Antarctica, but also into the surrounding oceans.”

Earth Day 2012

WASHINGTON, DC, April 22, 2012 (ENS) – On this, the 42nd annual celebration of Earth Day, the Earth Day Network is urging Americans to contact the White House and Congress asking them to “fully fund environmental education at the federal level.”

To mark Earth Day, President Barack Obama issued a proclamation focused on his Department of Education’s Green Ribbon Schools recognition award “to encourage more schools to pursue sustainability, foster health and wellness, and integrate environmental literacy into the curriculum,” launched last year.

“In the days ahead, we look forward to awarding the first Green Ribbons and recognizing the accomplishments of green schools across our country,” Obama said in the proclamation.

The Earth Day Network, which helped to create the Department of Education’s Green Ribbon Schools program, today pointed out that the Obama Administration’s fiscal year 2013 budget “is at odds with its commitment to green schools and environmental education.”

President Obama’s 2013 budget proposal to Congress recommends eliminating nearly $40 million for environmental education programs at the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency, the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration and at the National Science Foundation.

“These proposed cuts – the equivalent to one-fourth of the cost of one F-22 fighter jet – would cripple local and national environmental education programs across the country,” said the Earth Day Network today.

The Earth Day Network praised the administration for announcing a new federal task force on environmental education April 16 at the first White House Summit on Environmental Education, but warned that “these cuts have the potential to seriously hinder support for environmental education and green schools nationwide.”

Across the United States today there are events of every kind: rallies, concerts, cleanups, picnics, hikes and the world’s largest…

On the National Mall in Washington, the Earth Day Network is hosting free music, entertainment, celebrity speakers and an Eco-Village despite the rain.

The Explorers Club entertains the crowd on the National Mall, April 22, 2012 (Photo courtesy Earth Day Pictures)

On stage, Cheap Trick, Dave Mason, Kicking Daisies and The Explorers Club will entertain the hundreds of thousands of people on the Mall. Grammy winning jazz artist Esperanza Spalding will present the world premiere of the music video for her song “Endangered Species” at the event.

Chart-topping R&B singer Ledisi joins the event as a special guest performer. “I’m happy to do my part in helping educate and promote green initiatives to make the world a better, healthier place,” Ledisi said.

Saxophonist Ron Holloway will perform with the Chad Hollister Band; the band The Press and teen singer-songwriter Kate Diaz will also take the stage.

Gene Karpinski, head of the League of Conservation Voters called on the crowd to support President Obama. Earlier this week the League of Conservation Voters endorsed President Obama for re-election in a joint announcement with the Sierra Club, Clean Water Action, and Environment America.

“Elections are about choices – and for those who care about building a clean energy economy and confronting the climate crisis, the choice is clear: President Obama is a clean energy champion and Mitt Romney is a climate denier,” said Karpinski. “While President Obama has fought to put Americans in control of our energy future, Mitt Romney and his Big Oil buddies would take us back to the failed dirty energy policies of the past.”

To encourage people to enjoy the outdoors, The Nature Conservancy is attempting to set a world record for the number of picnics held in a 24 hour period.

The Center for Biological Diversity is marking Earth Day by giving away 100,000 free Endangered Species Condoms around the country. The condoms arrived this week in the mailboxes of 1,200 volunteer distributors who will hand them out at hundreds of Earth Day events and more than 80 college campuses.

“What better day than Earth Day to get people talking about overpopulation and its environmental impacts?” said Amy Harwood, coordinator of the Center’s human population campaign. “The world population has doubled since the first Earth Day 42 years ago, and yet today that rarely gets talked about. But the fact is that we add 80 million people to the planet each year, leading to pollution, habitat destruction, and the prospect of extinction for thousands of species already living on the brink.”

To demonstrate city-wide support for making Austin, Texas the Clean Energy Capital of the World, this Earth Day, hundreds of Austinites will take part in the Sierra Club’s Beyond Coal campaign’s largest-ever aerial photo. Mayor Lee Leffingwell and City Council members unanimously pledged to move the City of Austin off the Fayette coal plant and the event will showcase support for the initiative.

National Park Service Director Jonathan Jarvis this week released the Green Parks Plan to focus the bureau on sustainable management of national parks and key environmental issues ranging from reducing energy and water consumption to limiting waste to lowering emissions of greenhouse gases.

“The Green Parks Plan is a comprehensive approach to sustainability that will reduce the National Park Service’s carbon footprint through actions taken in every park and office,” Jarvis said during a news conference at the Lincoln Memorial. “It addresses how we will reduce our energy and water consumption, limit the waste we generate, mitigate the effects of climate change, change what we buy and how we manage facilities and integrate sustainable practices into every aspect of our operations.”

Americans as a whole favor a wide-ranging set of proposals for dealing with the nation’s energy and environment situations, but support varies markedly across party lines, reports the most recent Gallup Poll on the environment. Results released April 9 show Republicans are more likely than Democrats to favor opening up federal lands for drilling, and expanding the use of nuclear energy. Democrats are more likely to favor each of six different proposals, including emissions-control measures, spending government money on alternative sources of energy, and increasing enforcement of environmental regulations.

SodaHead.com, which bills itself as the web’s largest opinion-based community, polled its users to find out sentiments on topics surrounding the environment, recycling, organic products and hybrid cars. Overall, 85 percent of respondents said being “eco-friendly” is very important or moderately important. However, only 14 percent think the planet is improving, as 86 percent feel the planet has gotten worse or stayed the same.

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