Tuesday, September 18, 2012

12-09-19 Hello World!

Wednesday, September 19 @ 04:09 : Alella, ES
Wednesday, September 19 @ 03:58 : Chicago, Illinois, US
Wednesday, September 19 @ 03:27 : Monterrey, MX
Wednesday, September 19 @ 03:12 : Nashville, Tennessee, US
Wednesday, September 19 @ 02:53 : Mcallen, Texas, US
Wednesday, September 19 @ 02:28 : Wayne, Michigan, US
Wednesday, September 19 @ 01:37 : Scranton, Pennsylvania, US
Wednesday, September 19 @ 00:47 : Stanford, California, US
Wednesday, September 19 @ 00:41 : Southlake, Texas, US
Wednesday, September 19 @ 00:31 : Los Angeles, California, US

12-09-19 Proposed: Romney's tax returns for Obama's BC

Boycott the vote! It only legitimizes the illegitimate... 
Where should Occupy go next? Civil Disobedience in the footsteps of Thoreau and Gandhi!

Given the ongoing bickering among two fraudsters, Romney and Obama, here is a proposed resolution for the dispute:

  • Romney will provide tax returns for the past 5 years.
  • Obama will provide his true Birth Certificate.

Obama Campaign Asks for Mitt's Tax Returns, Romney Campaign Says GTFO


12-09-19 Ron Paul on intervention...

The Libya Fiasco and the Folly of Intervention 
By Rep. Ron Paul (R-Tex.) 

There is danger in the belief we can remake the world by bribing some countries and bombing others. 

12-09-19 Palestinian Spring

A Palestinian Spring

Here's what you need to know about the protests in the West Bank.


It has been a week of protest across the Middle East. Beginning in Egypt and Libya, then spreading to Yemen, Tunisia, Lebanon, and Sudan, angry crowds took to the streets to protest an anti-Islam film that few had likely ever seen. The protesters weren't too fickle about their targets: They not only attacked U.S. missions in Cairo and Benghazi, but also set the German embassy in Sudan aflame and burned down a Kentucky Fried Chicken in Lebanon.
Amidst this furor, you might have missed a slew of protests that occurred for a more tangible reason. Protesters demonstrated across the West Bank earlier this week, prompting speculation that the Arab Spring has finally arrived in Palestine. In recent days, fromBethlehem to Hebron to Ramallah, the Palestinians have taken to the streets. Only this time, they're not protesting against the Israeli occupation -- they're denouncing their own leaders.
As the Palestinian protests rage, here are eight things you need to know:
1.      It's a rough economy. 
2.      It's political.
3.      The Palestinian Authority is in the crosshairs.
4.      Salam Fayyad is in trouble.
5.      Mahmoud Abbas is in trouble, too.
6.      Gaza is safe...for now. On Sept. 3, a young man in the Gaza Strip immolated himself, mimicking Tunisian produce merchant Mohammed Bouazizi, who set off the Arab Spring in late 2010. The Palestinian Maan News Agency quoted Hamas leader Mousa Abu Marzook as saying that the protests in the West Bank may soon spread to Gaza, but Hamas has since denied this. For the time being, however, Gaza appears insulated from the protests. Hamas, after all, draws no Western aid, and consequently has few qualms about crushing dissent.

12-09-19 Palestinian hunger strikers 'close to death '

Palestinian hunger strikers 'close to death ': 
Amani Sarahna said that Samer Barq, one of three prisoners on hunger strike for weeks to demand their release from detention, was placed in intensive care at Assaf Harofeh medical centre, in central Israel, early on Monday evening.

The Job Crisis, the “Unemployable,” and the Fiscal Cliff
By Shamus Cooke

September 18, 2012 "
Information Clearing House  " - With the November elections right around the corner, the millions of unemployed and under-employed have little reason to care. Aside from some sparse rhetoric, neither Democrats nor Republicans have offered a solution to job creation. Most politicians seem purposefully myopic about the jobs crisis, as if a healthy dose of denial might get them through the electoral season unscathed.
In reality, the jobs crisis continues unaddressed, and threatens to get worse after the election. The post-election “fiscal cliff” of social cuts — “triggered” by Obama’s debt commission —will pull the economy below the current treading-water phase, drowning millions more workers in America in unemployment and hopelessness. In addition, two million more long-term unemployed — those lucky enough to still receive benefits — face the very likely possibility of having their benefits ended due to the trigger cuts.
But this is all part of the plan. The current jobs crisis is not accidental; there are public policies that could be implemented — such as a federal jobs program — that would stop unemployment in its tracks. Both parties agree that this cannot be done for the same reason: high unemployment is desirable since it acts as a sledgehammer against wages, lowering them with the intent of boosting profitability for corporations. Creating this nationwide “new normal” takes time.
Until corporations have an ideal environment to make super profits — aside from the short-term money printing of the Federal Reserve — unemployment will remain purposefully high. The Feds massive money-printing program — calledQuantitative Easing   (QE) — is a desperate move that risks super inflation, yet is deemed necessary until politicians implement the economic new normal for workers in America.
This policy is referred to as an “adjustment” period by some economists. Corporations and their puppet politicians have used the recession to start implementing the new normal of lower wages, reduced benefits, and fewer social programs on a city, state, and federal basis. In order to complete this national adjustment, expectations for working people must be drastically lowered, so that they’ll be less likely to be angry and fight against this onslaught.
This was Bill Clinton’s intention when he told the Democratic National Convention, “The old economy isn’t coming back.” Most people in America have yet to realize this, but the economic policies of the Democrats and Republicans reflect a conscious plan to push wages down and shred the safety net to fit the “new economy” standards sought by corporate America.
Because corporations only hire workers in order to make profit, businesses today are sitting on trillions of cash, waiting for a sunnier day to invest in labor. The lower the wages of workers in America, the brighter the skies for corporations’ bottom line. It is this basic economic interest driving the jobs crisis, as politicians only offer solutions that “encourage businesses to invest” rather than creating immediate solutions for working people.
But millions of people are waiting for sunnier days too. A large number are seeking to wait out the recession by returning to school and are now graduating; a record 3 percent have bachelor degrees, a number that is expected to rise. The increasing number of graduates will drive up unemployment, while those lucky enough to find jobs aren’t finding one capable of paying off their massive student loans. The trillion-dollar student loan business is yet another example of wealth transference from bottom to top: students borrow money from the wealthy, and pay them back with interest, sometimes exorbitant interest.
The Bureau of Labor Statistics indicates that there are 12.5 million people who are officially unemployed but an additional 9.5 million who are “unofficially” unemployed — those who are not actively looking for work, “discouraged workers,” part-time workers who want full-time work, etc. The number is almost certainly higher. These workers are not counted in the “official” unemployment numbers, and this unofficial number is getting worse. In August, 2012, 368,000 more workers joined this illustrious group by dropping out of the labor force, i.e., they gave up looking for a job and thus are no longer counted as unemployed, in this way giving Obama “positive news” since the unemployment numbers actually improved!
These workers are often referred to as “unemployable,” meaning that they are usually over 50 years of age or under 30 and are tarnished with a lack of job experience or an excess of it. Corporations can now have an abundance of workers to choose from, and are being extra picky on whom they hire, if anybody.
The new “private sector” jobs that Obama constantly brags about are much lower paying than the jobs they are replacing. According to a study performed by the National Employment Law Project, 58 percen  t of all new post-recession jobs come with wages below $14.00 an hour, i.e. not a living wage.
For those millions unable to find jobs, their future lies in either dependence on family or the state, or a risky life in the informal economy, which implies the possibility of imprisonment.
The reason that many labor and community groups have not fully explained the above facts — nor protested against them — is because they are “embarrassing” to the Democrats. Labor unions have gone into pre-election hibernation, ignoring reality as they push their members to campaign for the president who is overseeing this economic “new normal.”
The still-sputtering economy is expected to grind to a halt post-election, with average working people again footing the bill. But millions of Americans are experiencing the politics of the 1%, and drawing conclusions; ever since the recession government policy has been aimed at benefiting the wealthy and corporations, while working people have only experienced layoffs, lower wages and benefits, and slashed public services. To stop this dynamic of austerity working people must unite and protest in massive numbers, like the working people of Europe.
In Portland, Oregon, such a demonstration is being planned, pre-election, by a coalition of community groups to “stop the cuts,” for debt relief, and against the above national policy of austerity for working people. By highlighting the bi-partisan nature of the attack against working people, the community organizers in Portland hope to educate the community to take action, so that working people are prioritized. Let the wealthy pay for their crisis.
Shamus Cooke is a social service worker, trade unionist, and writer for Workers Action (www.workerscompass.org  ).  He can be reached at shamuscooke@gmail.com  

12-09-19 Hello World!

Wednesday, September 19 @ 00:47 : Stanford, California, US
Wednesday, September 19 @ 00:41 : Southlake, Texas, US
Wednesday, September 19 @ 00:39 : Alella, ES
Wednesday, September 19 @ 00:31 : Los Angeles, California, US
Wednesday, September 19 @ 00:23 : Las Vegas, Nevada, US
Tuesday, September 18 @ 23:05 : Modesto, California, US
Tuesday, September 18 @ 21:26 : Bethesda, Maryland, US
Tuesday, September 18 @ 21:17 : San Francisco, California, US
Tuesday, September 18 @ 20:47 : Norrköping, SE
Tuesday, September 18 @ 20:39 : Dagenham, GB
Tuesday, September 18 @ 20:39 : Draveil, FR

12-09-18 The US Supreme Court on "wicked men" in government, the US Constitution, and the prospects of war...

"In a landmark decision on April 3, 1866, the United States Supreme Court overturned the conspiracy against the national government conviction of Huntington attorney Lambadin P Milligram (1812-1899). This decision, rising out of the Civil War, set the precedent which protects civillians from being tried in military courts, even in time of war, if the civil courts are open and functional."

Ex parte Milligan, 71 U.S. 2, 125 (1866):    

“This nation, as experience has proved, cannot always remain at peace, and has no right to expect that it will always have wise and humane rulers, sincerely attached to the principles of the Constitution. Wicked men, ambitious of power, with hatred of liberty and contempt of law, may fill the place once occupied by Washington and Lincoln; and if this right is conceded, and the calamities of war again befall us, the dangers to human liberty are frightful to contemplate.”

Read here:


12-09-18 Robber Baron Eras – historic perspective

The primary characteristic of Robber Baron Eras is the placement of a Robber Baron class above the law. It leads to extreme abuse of the People during extended periods of socio-economic stagnation and never ending wars.  The Robber Baron Revival Era in the United States was commenced with the deregulation of the US financial sector. It is manifested today in the legal/banking fraud pandemic, decimation of the home-owning Middle-Class, reducing large segments of the People of the United States into poverty, widespread corruption of the US government (particularly, the courts and the legal profession), and never ending wars. It can easily last a century or more.

1.      Germany:  The Robber Baron Era – die Raubritter Zeit  (late Middle Ages)
With the decreased power and wealth of German kings, they rewarded their loyal captains for their service to the crown by knighting them.  Knighthood provided no direct financial benefits the knights belonged to the class of unlanded nobility.  However, the knighthood bestowed upon the knights immunity for prosecution by commoners.  Therefore, the knights were at liberty to enrich themselves by robbing and abusing the People.  The period also encompassed the Hundred Years’ War.
The spirit of the period is captured in the Gothic novel Michael Kohlhaas by von Kleist.  Kohlhaass, originally a well-to-do farmer is robbed of everything he owned by a local Robber Baron, but all his efforts to gain protection under the law are doomed to fail.  For those into the more popular culture – the period is ridiculed in the image of the knight on the bridge in Monty Python and the Holy Grail.

2.      United States: The Robber Baron Era (19th-20th centuries)
The original Robber Baron Era in the United States commenced following the Civil War, where enormous debts were incurred by the US government, and following which corporate regulation was relaxed, and transcontinental corporations were for the first time formed.  Effectively, large corporation were placed above the law, in particular under the veil of corporate “shell games”.
Widespread corruption of government included stolen presidential elections, and the widespread corruption of the financial sector led to the impoverishment of the People of the United States, and eventually also to the Great Depression.  The spirit of the period is best captured in the novel The Great Gatsby by Fitzgerald and a movie by the same name. 
Getting out of the Robber Baron Era was no short or simple process. It involved clearing up of the US Department of Justice and the US Courts, and new legislation, pertaining to banking and corporate regulation.
  • Cleaning up the US Courts, which at the time were described in the congressional record as a “farce”, was affected in part by the Salary Act (1919), which placed the clerks of the US courts under the direct authority of the US Attorney General.
  • Cleaning up of the US Department of Justice is credited to then Attorney General (1924-5), later Supreme Court Justice and Chief Justice Stone.
  • New frameworks for corporate/banking regulation was established through the Glass–Steagall Act (1933) and theSecurities Acts (1933, 1934), and with it Roosevelt’s New Deal and the court-packing scheme”.
  • The turn around in the US Supreme Court in the 1932-1937 terms is often credited to the “Three Musketeers” – Brandeis, Cardozo, and Stone –  who construed “implied guarantees” and “the right for privacy”, and emphasized adherence to the First and Tenth Amendment (freedom of speech, restriction of government powers, respectively) and “piercing of corporate veils”. 
And yet, in 1946, US veterans, returning from World War II had to take up arms against the county government in Athens, Tennessee, in order to regain the right for open, free, honest voting, after the US Department of Justice refused to enforce Equal Protection under the law.
The period encompassed the better part of a century and two world wars. Historians consider the Great Depression a central cause of World War II, and World War II as the main way that the US economy eventually emerged from the Great Depression.
Therefore, one can conclude that the US Robber Baron Era took the better part of a century, and was turned around through a combination of societal changes.

3.      United States: Robber Baron Revival Era (20th-21st centuries)
The Robber Baron Revival Era was ushered in by the deliberate undermining of the regulatory framework that was established in the wake of the Great Depression. Repeal of the Glass-Steagall Act through the Gramm-Leach-Bliley Act (1999), under President Clinton, with Greenspan as Chair of the Federal Reserve Chair, and Rubin as Secretary of the Treasury. It was adamantly opposed by Federal Reserve Chair Volker (1979-1987) in prior years.
Corruption of the banking industry in synergy with widespread corruption of the state and federal courts was noted by numerous experts, particularly in respect to the foreclosure crisis, which followed, and amounted to a legal/banking fraud epidemic in the United States.
Corruption of the Supreme Court of the United States was highlighted by:
·        Bush v Gore (2002) – where legal experts hold that the Supreme Court had no jurisdiction to begin with, and which affected a stolen presidential election, and
·        Citizens United v Federal Election Commission (2010), which is seen by many legal experts as an open invitation for the corruption of government by large corporations.
The Robber Baron Revival Era in the United States is also characterized stagnation in socio-economic development, bigger than ever prisoners population, decimation of the home-owning Middle Class,  impoverishment of the People, and never ending wars. 
In conclusion:
There is no way to tell when and how the Robber Baron Revival Era in the United States would come to an end.  It can easily last a century or more, and ending it would require major societal changes, in particular, cleaning up the US courts and the US legal profession.

12-09-17 Large demonstrations against austerity in Portugal

The Daily Star
 Mass anti-austerity demonstrations in Spain and PortugalSeptember 17, 2012 12:24 AM
Protesters hold a banner reading “Damn the troika! We want our lives,” during a march in Porto, Portugal.
Protesters hold a banner reading “Damn the troika! We want our lives,” during a march in Porto, Portugal.

MADRID: Mass protests against increasingly tougher austerity measures in Spain and Portugal have ramped up the pressure on Iberian governments struggling to avoid international bailouts.
Tens of thousands of chanting protesters from across Spain packed the center of Madrid Saturday, including policemen in blue T-shirts, firemen with their red helmets, teachers decked out in matching green, health care workers in white and parents pushing strollers.
Many blew whistles and chanted, “we are not paying for this crisis” and “general strike now” as they marched to the Plaza Colon square for the rally.
Meanwhile, over 100,000 people took to the streets of Lisbon and other Portuguese cities to protest against fresh austerity measures recently announced by their center-right government.
Organizers estimated that 50,000 people turned out in Lisbon, with a similar number in the second-largest city of Porto and several thousands in around 30 other cities.
In the Portuguese capital, protesters clashed with police in front of the parliament, but no one has been reported as injured.
In Madrid, over 1,000 buses ferried people in for the protest, which was organized by Spain’s two leading trade unions, the CCOO and the UGT, in collaboration with roughly 150 smaller organizations.
The government said around 65,000 people took part in the demonstration.
“We want to say loud and clear to the government that we do not agree, that its policies cause too much damage, that we will not resign ourselves because there are alternatives,” CCOO head Ignacio Toxo told the rally.
In July, Spanish Prime Minister Mariano Rajoy’s conservative government eliminated public workers’ annual Christmas bonuses, as part of austerity measures worth 102 billion euros [$126.5 billion] to be put in place by 2014 to reduce Spain’s public deficit.
The government’s austerity measures also include an increase in sales tax and cuts to jobless benefits in a nation with nearly 25 percent unemployment.
“I see the future as very black,” said public sector worker Rian de los Rios as she made her way to the rally.
“My salary is getting smaller and smaller and my hours longer.”
The Madrid government argues that the austerity measures will prevent Spain from needing the kind of multi-billion-euro bailout already received by Portugal, Greece, Ireland, which come with detailed conditions and regular inspections.
“These sacrifices are absolutely unavoidable if we are to correct the difficult economic climate we are experiencing and lay the foundations for a recovery,” Spanish economy Minister Luis de Guindos told reporters in Cyprus.
Madrid has already accepted a eurozone rescue loan of up to 100 billion euros to save its banks, still reeling from a 2008 property market crash.
The protesters demanded a referendum on the deficit-reduction strategy of cost cutting and tax hikes put in place by the government since it took office in December.
UGT head Candido Mendez said Saturday’s rally was the start of a “long fight” against the austerity measures.
Railway workers, along with metro workers in Madrid and Barcelona, will stage a one-day strike Monday over the austerity measures.
The marchers in Lisbon held up banners reading, “Stop social terrorism” and “Soon the State will steal from the dead.”
Another slogan, “Let the troika go to the devil,” made reference to the country’s international creditors – the so-called troika of the European Union, the International Monetary Fund and the European Central Bank.
The global economic institutions are monitoring Portugal’s implementation of spending cuts and reforms required in return for the 78 billion-euro rescue package the country received in 2011.
These cuts and reforms caused the economy to contract by 1.2 percent in the second quarter, faster than the 0.1 percent rate at the beginning of the year, with the drop for the whole year expected to hit 3.0 percent.
In response, Portuguese Prime Minister Pedro Passos Coelho announced a rise in social security contributions for public and private sector workers together with cuts in employers’ contributions in a bid to kick start job creation, with unemployment running at more than 15 percent.
Portugal won a reprieve from its creditors Tuesday, when the EU and IMF agreed to relax Portugal’s deficit targets for 2012 and 2013, rewarding the Portuguese for pushing through reforms.

Read more: http://www.dailystar.com.lb/Business/International/2012/Sep-17/188166-mass-anti-austerity-demonstrations-in-spain-and-portugal.ashx#ixzz26pSKmg3A
(The Daily Star :: Lebanon News :: http://www.dailystar.com.lb) 

12-09-17 Widespread public corruption in Los Angeles County probation operations

Widespread corruption of the family, conservatorship, and probation courts in Los Angeles has been repeatedly documented.
The suprising news is that FBI decided to get involved in the legal/banking fraud pandemic in Los Angeles, of all places.  After all, it was FBI itself that already in the early 2000s provided advance notice of the pandemic, and distinguished Los Angeles as "the epicenter of the epidemic". However, FBI refuses to take action on such matters.  In person, the Los Angeles Chief of the White Collar Crime Squad explained to me that it was "well over his head".
However, as usualy, the corrupt judges are left alone...
Joseph Zernik, PhD
Human Rights Alert (NGO)

L.A. County probation executive arrested on suspicion of bank fraud is former Paramount, Compton and Lynwood assemblyman

By Christina Villacorte Staff Writer
Posted:   09/17/2012 01:03:16 PM PDT
Updated:   09/17/2012 01:07:26 PM PDT

An executive with the Los Angeles County Probation Department who is also a former assemblyman was arrested Monday by the FBI for bank fraud, the department announced.Carl Washington, who is the department's director for intergovernmental relations and legislative affairs, was arrested at 10 a.m. Monday by the FBI at the Probation Department headquarters.
The department will release full details at a press conference this afternoon.
Washington is a former Baptist preacher who represented Paramount, Compton and Lynwood in the state Assembly a decade ago. He ran for Los Angeles City Council in 2001 and lost to Jan Perry.
The arrest comes amid a year-long crackdown on corruption by the new Probation Department Chief Jerry Powers.
Some 40 other probation department employees have been arrested since January -- most for offenses that were not work related, the department said.
"These recent arrests should served as a clear message that this chief -- and this probation department -- will not tolerate criminal behavior by staff," Powers said in a statement.
"This is a law enforcement agency, and as such we will hold ourselves to a higher standard both on and off duty."
The probation department is assisting in a number of criminal investigations involving its employees, Powers said.