Sunday, December 8, 2013

Brick TeeVee and The WTO, Fukushima, NSA UPDATE!

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WTO, Fukushima, NSA UPDATE So we've made it through the other side on Black Friday/Cyber Monday and yer every move and transaction has been logged by the NSA and hordes of retailers willing to sell that data to any marketing firm that asks for it. How could that be? Read on! But first we go to for Inflation Watch 2013; Price Of Christmas Surges 7.7% Over the past 30 years, the rise in the price of Christmas according to PNC's annual 12-days-of-Christmas price index has matched the CPI at around 2.9% YoY. However, in recent years, the reality is considerably worse than the well-managed inflation data the government profers. The price of Christmas in 2013 is up a stunning 7.7% over 2012 - the biggest jump since 2010' 9.2% rise. The biggest driver of the increase were the dancing ladies (must be the minimum wage decree?) though 8 items saw modest increases also. Once again, it seems the government's benign inflation data is fictionalized by reality's rising price of everything. Click over to see the inflation on 12 Drummers Drumming and 4 Calling Birds! Also At Detroit Eligible To File Chapter 9; Pension Haircuts Allowed Bankruptcy Judge Rules ...... As somewhat expected - though hoped against by many Detroit union workers - Judge Steven Rhodes appears to have confirmed Detroit is eligible for bankruptcy protection (after pointing out that the city's accounting was accurate and it is indeed insolvent) making this the largest ever muni bankruptcy. ...... The city will now begin working toward its next major move - the submission of a plan to re-adjust its more than $18 billion in debt - including significant haircuts for pension funds (possibly 16c on the dollar recovery) and bondholders. With Detroit as precedent, we can only imagine the torrent of other cities in trouble that will be willing to fold. He did provide an "out" though: RHODES WARNS THE CITY THAT JUST BECAUSE PENSION RIGHTS CAN BE IMPAIRED, DOESN'T MEAN HE WILL APPROVE A PLAN WITH STEEP CUTS..... More at Zerohedge! Author and Speaker for Ocean Robbins posted this at HuffPoAOL The Dark Side of Coca-Cola's Healthy Brands On November 22, Coca-Cola completed its acquisition of Zico Coconut Water. The company now owns a string of beverage brands marketed to people who like natural foods, including not just Zico but also Honest Tea, Odwalla, Simply Orange, and Vitamin Water. In the last few years, sales of natural and organic foods have become big business. Annual revenues have nearly tripled since 2001, and they now exceed $91 billion. Healthy food isn't just for hippies any more, and corporate America wants in on the action. While sales of Coca-Cola's soft drinks have been slumping, company profits were up in the third quarter of 2013, thanks to strong and growing sales from Coca-Cola's non-soda and healthier beverage offerings. But not everything is cheery in organic-land. Some natural food lovers are uncomfortable with the fact that most of their treasured brands have been bought by corporate behemoths. Clorox bought Burt's Bees. General Mills claimed Cascadian Farms and Muir Glenn. Even Kellogg's got into the natural foods buy-up bonanza by purchasing popular brands like Kashi and Gardenburger. In fact, 80 percent of organic brands are now reportedly owned by mega corporations. This means that natural foods consumers might be unknowingly contributing to the profits of, and supporting the policies and practices of, parent companies like Coca-Cola with whom they have profound disagreement. ........... Monsanto and Coca-Cola might like to dismiss GMO labeling advocates as a bunch of uninformed Luddites who are afraid of science and don't care about the world's hungry. But many scientists and informed humanitarians have real and significant concerns about GMOs. In the 20 years since genetically modified crops first came on the market, studies have found that they have led to higher pesticide use, and no meaningful improvement in flavor, nutrition, yield or water requirements. And many independent scientists are deeply concerned that they have not been adequately tested and may even present health risks, and that their use has led not only to vastly increased use of pesticides but to a host of other environmental problems. But companies like Coca-Cola, Pepsi, and Kellogg have joined forces with Monsanto to bankroll efforts aimed at keeping Americans from knowing which foods contain GMOs. And they've used money from sales of their natural brands to help finance the effort. .............. More than half of the "no" campaign funding came in the form of allegedly illegally laundered money. Coca-Cola, PepsiCo, and Nestle were the leaders in a group of companies that tried to finance the campaign through secret contributions to the Grocery Manufacturers Association. It took a lawsuit from the state attorney general to bring the truth to light. It turns out that sales of Honest Tea, one of the world's fastest growing organic and non-GMO brands, were joined by sales of Zico, Simply Orange, Odwalla, and Powerade, along with Coke itself, in helping to bankroll a secret scheme to keep GMOs from being labeled. Fortunately for fans of the right to know what's in our food, there's a petition and boycott campaign underway, launched by the Food Revolution Network (for which I serve as CEO), and the Center for Food Safety. We are pushing Coca-Cola to be accountable to the natural foods consumers from whom it profits, by ceasing to fund efforts aimed at derailing GMO labeling. More than 135,000 people signed on in the first two weeks. Want to help? Join the Coca-Cola brands boycott, and find out how you can get informed and take action, here.
And speaking of Nestlé urges us Let's stand together to stop Nestlé Nestlé's chairman has been caught on camera saying that water isn't a human right, calling this view "extreme". Instead, he wants water sold on the open market like anything else, for those who can afford to buy it -- and his company is working harder than ever to make sure it happens. Its business model is clear: privatize and commodify our public resources -- under the leadership of a man who says a CEO's "biggest social responsibility" is to ensure corporate profits. From Pakistan to Canada, Nestlé is busy draining millions of liters of our fresh water -- often without paying a cent! -- in order to sell back to the public at record prices. Here's the thing: if we don't stand up to Nestlé, no one will. The world's largest food company already has governments and regulators in its back pocket, and has cowed others with its aggressive PR campaigns. They have billions in corporate profits and influence. But we are two million strong, and we have the public on our side. And when people stand together, we can win. In Canada, an ambitious lawsuit stopped Nestlé from extracting millions more liters liters of fresh water during a drought. And in Pakistan, Nestlé was even sponsoring fake 'public health seminars' to tell people that non-bottled water was dangerous, until public outrage forced them to stop. Can you commit to stand up to Nestlé, and pledge now to stop Nestlé's plan to commodify nature for profit? Sure you can! And we'll add you can stop buying Nestlé and Coke products too. You can get yer fix for chocolate at the's Chocolate section and also at outlets like Trader Joe's who feature ONE POUND organic chocolate slabs, a favorite at the Brick TeeVee Compound! And just stop consuming High Fructose Corn Syrup found in most soft drinks like Coke & Sprite. Instead opt for juices, organic coffee and tea and filtered water from your own tap! Or locally micro-brewed BEER haha! As a biological organism YOU ARE WHAT YOU EAT. Shop smart and eat smart!
Writing at Lawrence Davidson explains why The Neocons Go Nuclear over the latest Iran-nuke deal. ............. Iran has long been the centerpiece in a near-hysterical campaign by Zionists and neoconservatives who portray the Muslim world as the successor to the old Soviet Union. Communism has been replaced by Islam, and now that the U.S. is supposedly the only real superpower in the world, the message of this campaign is that the United States should act in a preemptive way and use its military and economic power to stamp out real and potential threats. This was the doctrine of the George W. Bush administration, and it led to the disastrous invasion of Iraq. This is the doctrine of the American Zionists who are interested in destroying any Muslim power that may someday challenge Israel. President Obama’s failure to follow this doctrine, at least in the case of Iran, has made him a target for these warmongers. Reporting the interim agreement with Iran in way that emphasizes Iranian obligations while playing down those of the United States and the West is a tactic to counter the hysteria on the Right. And hysteria is the operative word here. It betrays itself in ridiculous historical comparisons and vicious name-calling. Take for example the hyperbole of Daniel Pipes, president of the Middle East Forum and publisher of the Middle East Quarterly, both sounding boards for the Zionist worldview. In an article appearing in the right-wing National Review Pipes writes, “This wretched deal offers one of those rare occasions when comparison with Neville Chamberlain in Munich in 1938 is valid.” This is utter nonsense. .......... After Munich no one was telling Hitler that if he didn’t behave, the alternative was war. Yet, that is what Obama’s speeches imply. The present deal is, in these ways, the complete opposite of Munich. What sort of world does Pipes live in that he can misread the situation so dramatically? It is an Orwellian world warped by Zionist ideology. Since these ideologues have opened the door to ugly comparisons – and they typically abhor anyone making any kind of comparisons to Adolf Hitler – let’s get something straight here. It is not the case that Barack Obama is like Neville Chamberlain. It is, however, the case that the neocons and their ilk remind one of Hitler, at least when it comes to manufacturing false scenarios for war and then relentlessly selling them to the public. ......
Pepe Escobar's THE ROVING EYE at the Asia Times also explains
US-Iran: The ever-spinning deal .........Iran will be allowed to trade again in gold, petrochemicals, car and plane parts, and will have some US$4.2 billion in oil sales unfrozen. Yet a fortune remains in permafrost - including $10 billion in European banks. And there is still $50 billion with Iran's Asian energy clients - China, India, Japan, South Korea, Turkey - that still cannot be repatriated. Over the next six months Iran must; stop enriching uranium above 5%; dilute its stock of 20%-enriched uranium; install no more centrifuges; refrain from fueling the heavy-water reactor in Arak; and accept a lot more International Atomic Energy Agency (IAEA) inspections (which have unearthed no evidence whatsoever uranium has been diverted to weaponization). Predictably, the spin war unleashed the minute the deal was clinched in Geneva centers on Iran's right to enrich uranium. US Secretary of State John Kerry said no; not implicit in the document. Iranian Foreign Minister Javad Zarif said yes, implicit in the deal and in the nuclear Non-Proliferation Treaty (NPT) itself. ....... Now for the hysteria brigades. Perhaps the trillion-dollar enigma of the moment is this: Has the Obama administration abandoned the notion of regime change in Tehran for good? It may be too early to tell. ............ Immediately after the deal was signed, Rouhani once again stressed Tehran does not want and will never build a nuclear weapon; one just needs to be reminded of Supreme Leader Ayatollah Khamenei's fatwas branding a nuclear weapon as anti-Islamic. And to think that all this could have happened 10 years ago, in early 2003, when the Khatami administration in Tehran - via Swiss intermediation - offered to put everything on the table; the nuclear program, Hezbollah, even normalization with Israel. Predictably, the neo-con cabal led by Dick, Rummy and Wolfie utterly rejected negotiating with a certified member of the "axis of evil" (as in George W Bush's 2002 State of the Union address); the clueless neo-cons were entertaining wet dreams of snuffing out Saddam Hussein and then embarking on the next adventure, "real men go to Tehran"-style. Kerry couldn't help but invoke it in Geneva to add polish to what's being spun as the major foreign policy victory of two Obama administrations. Predictably, the very restricted circle of those against even the idea of Geneva completely freaked out. That starts with neo-cons and assorted Republicans who have backed every demented horse in recent geopolitical history, from the embryo of al-Qaeda in 1980s Afghanistan to the Contras in Nicaragua, from the Mujahideen-e-Khalq "exiled" in Iraq to Bandar Bush's goons let loose in Syria. ..........
At the Guardian UK Ian Sample outlines Fukushima two years on: a dirty job with no end in sight Carefully, gently, one-by-one. The removal of nuclear fuel rod assemblies from a badly damaged building at the Fukushima Daiichi power plant is finally under way. Months in the planning, the job is risky, complex, and crucial. Here begins the first major step in the toughest decommissioning project ever attempted. Fukushima is home to six nuclear reactors, three of which were running when the giant tsunami swept across the site on 11 March 2011. The defuelling operation centres on the building for reactor four. Though the reactor was shut down for maintenance when the towering wave struck, all its radioactive fuel, and more from earlier runs, was held in a storage pool on an upper floor of the building. Under normal conditions, the storage pool above the reactor was a safe haven. But four days into the crisis a hydrogen explosion tore through the structure and blew the walls and roof off. Moving the radioactive fuel from the wrecked building to a more secure site became a high priority. Some fuel assemblies have already been moved. Workers use a crane to reach down into the pool, lift an assembly from its rack, then lower it into a waiting cask that sits upright on the pool floor. When a cask is full – each can take 22 fuel assemblies – a second crane hoists it from the pool and places it on a trailer. Filled casks are then transported to a more secure storage facility on the site. The procedure sounds straightforward enough. But there are 1,533 fuel assemblies in the pool at building four. Each is 4m long, and holds up to 80 individual fuel rods. The team of 36 workers that are responsible for the job will work in six shifts around the clock. The job will take until the end of 2014. And that is with no glitches. But the work at reactor four is only the start. Once the fuel is removed to a safer place, workers will turn their attention to a further 1,573 fuel rod assemblies held in similar pools in the buildings for reactors one, two and three. All were running when the tsunami struck; all suffered meltdowns. The radiation in these buildings is still intense, and access inside is limited. Though delicate and painstaking, retrieving the fuel rod assemblies from the pools is not the toughest job the workers face. More challenging by far will be digging out the molten cores in the reactors themselves. Some of the fuel burned through its primary containment and is now mixed with cladding, steel and concrete. The mixture will have to be broken up, sealed in steel containers and moved to a nuclear waste storage site. That work will not start until some time after 2020. ...... To fully decommission Fukushima Daiichi might take 40 years and no one expects a cakewalk. ............. Up on the cliff overlooking the Fukushima plant is a bleak reminder of an ongoing battle at the site. This strip of land was once filled with trees, a place for workers to go walking. Tepco has cut the trees down now, to make room for 1,000 huge metal storage tanks. They hold more than 360,000 tonnes of radioactive water, enough to fill 140 Olympic swimming pools. The volume rises every day. Over the next three years, Tepco wants to add storage for another 270,000 tonnes of radioactive wastewater. Ultimately, the water must be returned to the Pacific. There is nowhere else for it to go.......... Much more! Then at They’re Going to Dump the Fukushima Radiation Into the Ocean Tepco is planning on dumping all of the radioactive water stored at Fukushima into the ocean. The industry-controlled nuclear regulators are pushing for dumping the radiation, as well. As EneNews reports:
  • Juan Carlos Lentijo, head of IAEA’s mission to Fukushima Daiichi, Dec. 4, 2013: “Controlled discharge is a regular practice in all the nuclear facilities in the world. And what we are trying to say here is to consider this as one of the options to contribute to a good balance of risks and to stabilize the facility for the long term.”
  • Shunichi Tanaka, chairman of Japan’s Nuclear Regulation Authority, Dec. 4, 2013: “You cannot keep storing the water forever. We have to make choice comparing all risks involved.”
  • NHK, Dec. 4, 2013: IAEA team leader Juan Carlos Lentijo [...] said it is necessary and indispensable to assess the impact the tritium discharge might have on human health and the environment, and to get government approval as well as consent from concerned people.
  • Japan Times, Dec. 4, 2013: “Of course . . . public acceptance for this purpose is necessary,” said Lentijo, adding strict monitoring of the impact of the discharge would also be essential.
  • See also: Gundersen: They want to dump all Fukushima’s radioactive water in Pacific — Tepco: It will be diluted, then released — Professor suggests pumping it out in deep ocean (VIDEOS)
In the real world, there is no safe level of radiation. And there are alternatives. Dr. Arjun Makhijani – a recognized expert on nuclear power, who has testified before Congress, served as an expert witness in Nuclear Regulatory Commission proceedings, and been interviewed by many of the largest news organizations – told PBS in March: We actually sent a proposal to Japan two years ago, some colleagues of mine and I, saying you should park a supertanker or a large tanker offshore, and put the water in it, and send it off someplace else so that the water treatment and the water management is not such a huge, constant issue. But [the Japanese declined]. Tepco – with no financial incentive to actually fix things – has been insanely irresponsible and has only been pretending to contain Fukushima. And see this. Unfortunately, Japan has devolved into crony capitalism … and even tyranny. So instead of doing something to contain the radiation, they’re going to dump it. Postscript: In related news, the Japanese government has embarked on a massive program of burning radioactive waste throughout Japan … instead of encapsulating it in glass or otherwise containing it.
And Justin McCurry at The Guardian UK now tells us Japan whistleblowers face crackdown under proposed state secrets law Whistleblowers and journalists in Japan could soon find themselves facing long spells in prison for divulging and reporting state secrets, possibly including sensitive information about the Fukushima nuclear disaster and the country's souring relations with China. Under a special state secrets bill expected to pass on Friday, public officials and private citizens who leak "special state secrets" face prison terms of up to 10 years, while journalists who seek to obtain the classified information could get up to five years. Critics of the new law say it marks a return to the days of prewar and wartime Japanese militarism, when the state used the Peace Preservation Act to arrest and imprison political opponents. "It is a threat to democracy," said Keiichi Kiriyama, an editorial writer for the Tokyo Shimbun newspaper, adding that the legislation would "have a chilling effect on public servants, who could become wary about giving the information" to journalists. In the aftermath of the Edward Snowden leaks, Japan has come under pressure from Washington to better protect state secrets – including intelligence shared by the US – at a time of rising regional tensions. Japan's prime minister, Shinzo Abe, says the law is crucial if his US-style national security council, approved this week, is to function properly. ......... The secrecy bill's hasty passage through the lower house has been marked by noisy public demonstrations and opposition from journalists, lawyers, politicians, academics and scientists, as well as film directors and manga artists concerned about freedom of expression. They say the prospect of prison terms will deter whistleblowers from leaking sensitive or embarrassing information in the public interest, and journalists from trying to obtain it. The upper house of Japan's parliament is expected to approve the bill before the end of the current parliamentary session on Friday, possibly later on Thursday. The chief criticism of the bill is its vague definition of what constitutes a state secret, potentially giving officials carte blanche to block the release of information on a vast range of subjects, including measures to counterbalance China's growing military influence in the region, and the safety of the country's nuclear reactors. "There are few specifics in the law, which means it can be used to hide whatever the government wishes to keep away from public scrutiny," said Mizuho Fukushima, an opposition MP.......... Following up is Reuters Linda Sieg and Kiyoshi Takenaka Japan enacts strict state secrets law despite protests Japan enacted a state-secrets law toughening penalties for leaks on Friday, despite public protests and criticism that it will muzzle the media and help cover up official misdeeds. ......... Media, publishers, lawyers and even entertainers have denounced the bill, which drastically expands the definition of state secrets and for some has echoes of Japan's harsh authoritarian regime before and during World War Two. Chief Cabinet Secretary Yoshihide Suga said the government would make efforts to explain the law and win the country's trust before the measure takes effect. "We think that this law is extremely important for our connections with our allies and other foreign nations," he said. "I believe that people will come to understand." The passing of the law coincides with a worldwide debate on secrecy after former U.S. National Security Agency contractor Edward Snowden leaked documents and a U.S. Army private leaked information to anti-secrecy group Wikileaks. ....... Under the law, public servants or others with access to state secrets could be jailed for up to 10 years for leaking them. Journalists and others in the private sector convicted of encouraging such leaks could get up to five years if they use "grossly inappropriate" means to solicit the information. Thousands of protesters, bundled in coats against the chill, gathered across from the parliament building, chanting "Shame on you, Shinzo Abe." Some carried candles. "This was really rushed through too fast and you have to wonder why the hurry now," one man told public broadcaster NHK. "I think we'll really regret this later." ......... Top officials in all ministries will be able to designate special state secrets in four categories - defense, diplomacy, counter-terrorism and counter espionage - that can be kept secret for up to 60 years and in some cases longer. Crowds of demonstrators gathered daily outside parliament to protest the law. Passing of the law could dent Abe's popularity, which has already slipped to just below 50 percent in one poll this week from early highs of around 60 percent. Even so, some political experts said the damage was unlikely to be long-lasting. More critical for voters is whether his "Abenomics" prescription of hyper-easy monetary policy and fiscal spending keeps the economy afloat. In a related energy matter BOB KINCAID discusses West Virginia's COAL Mountaintop Removal issue with Mike Roselle of Climate Ground Zero HERE on the 1st hour of Wednesday's show starting around 8:00 minutes in. MUST LISTEN! GOOD ITEM!This is VERY IMPORTANT! LISTEN NOW! In a related matter Brendan Sasso at's Hillicon Valley blog reports Patriot Act author: Obama’s intel czar should be prosecuted Rep. James Sensenbrenner Jr., the original author of the Patriot Act, says Director of National Intelligence James Clapper should be prosecuted for lying to Congress. "Lying to Congress is a federal offense, and Clapper ought to be fired and prosecuted for it," the Wisconsin Republican said in an interview with The Hill. He said the Justice Department should prosecute Clapper for giving false testimony during a Senate Intelligence Committee hearing in March. During that hearing, Sen. Ron Wyden (D-Ore.) asked Clapper whether the National Security Agency (NSA) collects data on millions of Americans. Clapper insisted that the NSA does not — or at least does "not wittingly" — collect information on Americans in bulk. After documents leaked by Edward Snowden revealed that the NSA collects records on virtually all U.S. phone calls, Clapper apologized for the misleading comment. The intelligence director said he tried to give the "least untruthful" answer he could without revealing classified information. Sensenbrenner said that explanation doesn’t hold water and argued the courts and Congress depend on accurate testimony to do their jobs. "The only way laws are effective is if they're enforced," Sensenbrenner said. "If it's a criminal offense — and I believe Mr. Clapper has committed a criminal offense — then the Justice Department ought to do its job." Shawn Turner, a spokesman for Clapper, declined to comment. Surprised? Meanwhile the Snowden Hits just keep coming! Lead reporter Barton Gellman and Ashkan Soltani reveal NSA tracking cellphone locations worldwide, Snowden documents show The National Security Agency is gathering nearly 5 billion records a day on the whereabouts of cellphones around the world, according to top-secret documents and interviews with U.S. intelligence officials, enabling the agency to track the movements of individuals — and map their relationships — in ways that would have been previously unimaginable. The records feed a vast database that stores information about the locations of at least hundreds of millions of devices, according to the officials and the documents, which were provided by former NSA contractor Edward Snowden. New projects created to analyze that data have provided the intelligence community with what amounts to a mass surveillance tool. The NSA does not target Americans’ location data by design, but the agency acquires a substantial amount of information on the whereabouts of domestic cellphones “incidentally,” a legal term that connotes a foreseeable but not deliberate result. One senior collection manager, speaking on the condition of anonymity but with permission from the NSA, said “we are getting vast volumes” of location data from around the world by tapping into the cables that connect mobile networks globally and that serve U.S. cellphones as well as foreign ones. Additionally, data are often collected from the tens of millions of Americans who travel abroad with their cellphones every year. In scale, scope and potential impact on privacy, the efforts to collect and analyze location data may be unsurpassed among the NSA surveillance programs that have been disclosed since June. Analysts can find cellphones anywhere in the world, retrace their movements and expose hidden relationships among the people using them. ......... Robert Litt, general counsel for the Office of the Director of National Intelligence, which oversees the NSA, said “there is no element of the intelligence community that under any authority is intentionally collecting bulk cellphone location information about cellphones in the United States.” The NSA has no reason to suspect that the movements of the overwhelming majority of cellphone users would be relevant to national security. Rather, it collects locations in bulk because its most powerful analytic tools — known collectively as CO-TRAVELER — allow it to look for unknown associates of known intelligence targets by tracking people whose movements intersect. Still, location data, especially when aggregated over time, are widely regarded among privacy advocates as uniquely sensitive. Sophisticated mathematical tech­niques enable NSA analysts to map cellphone owners’ relationships by correlating their patterns of movement over time with thousands or millions of other phone users who cross their paths. Cellphones broadcast their locations even when they are not being used to place a call or send a text message. ........ HUGE! Click over to read the next two pages! Then WATCH THIS Video: How the NSA uses cellphone tracking to find and ‘develop’ targets. Also at Reuters Randy Fabi from Bali, Indonesia reports WTO overcomes last minute hitch to reach its first global trade deal The World Trade Organization reached its first ever trade reform deal on Saturday to the roar of approval from nearly 160 ministers who had gathered on the Indonesian island of Bali to decide on the make-or-break agreement that could add $1 trillion to the global economy. The approval came after Cuba dropped a last-gasp threat to veto the package of measures. ........ But the agreement is a milestone for the 159 WTO members, marking the organization's first global trade agreement since it was created in 1995. It also rescues the WTO from the brink of failure and will rekindle confidence in its ability to lower barriers to trade worldwide, after 12 years of fruitless negotiations. The deal would lower trade barriers and speed up the passage of goods through customs. Analysts estimate that over time it could boost the world economy by hundreds of billions of dollars and create more than 20 million jobs, mostly in developing countries. It still needs to be approved by each member government. ......... The Bali meeting was also noticeable for its lack of anti-WTO protests compared to the street battles when ministers met in Seattle 14 years ago. The Bali accord will help revive confidence in the WTO's ability to negotiate global trade deals, after it consistently failed to clinch agreement in the Doha round of talks that started in 2001 and proved hugely over-ambitious. As the Doha round stuttered to a halt, momentum shifted away from global trade pacts in favor of regional deals such as the Trans-Pacific Partnership that the United States is negotiating with 11 other countries, and a similar agreement it is pursuing bilaterally with the European Union. So if the members of WTO think it's good, that usually means it's bad for the rest of us. Common Dreams has this Press Release from the War On Want WTO ‘Deal’ Condemned by Trade Campaigners Reacting to news coming out of the WTO ministerial conference in Bali today (6 December), John Hilary, executive director of War on Want, said: “Any suggestion that there is a deal to celebrate from the WTO talks in Bali is absurd. The negotiations have failed to secure permanent protection for countries to safeguard the food rights of their peoples, exposing hundreds of millions to the prospect of hunger and starvation simply in order to satisfy the dogma of free trade. It is time to end the WTO charade once and for all, and focus instead on undoing the harm it has already caused across the world.” Hilary continued: “There is a rank hypocrisy at the heart of the WTO that cannot be glossed over. The USA and EU continue to channel billions in subsidies to their richest farmers, yet seek to destroy other countries’ right to protect their poorest citizens from starvation. The WTO is an institution that has lost any claim to legitimacy. No amount of spin from Bali can disguise that fact.” The compromise language in the Bali declaration on an ‘interim mechanism’ to allow public stockholding of staple crops for food security purposes is a rejection of US attempts to set a time limit on any such solution. Yet the declaration opens the way for further threats by calling for a new WTO work programme to complete the Doha Round’s damaging trade liberalisation agenda, due to be drawn up within the next 12 months. The ministerial declaration from the Bali talks also recognises the WTO’s failure to address key issues of importance to developing countries. ....... Hilary concluded: “The WTO’s Doha Round was launched in 2001 as a ‘development agenda’, supposedly delivering a fairer future for the peoples of the majority world. The outcome from Bali shows just how hollow that claim was.” For more stories on this WTO deal see WTO NEWS TODAY "The world's leading source for WTO News - 179,931,738 articles and 67 million users since 1995" including WTO deal, says it is against PHL's interest, Will WTO deal help the poor? and 5 things to know about the global deal at WTO. NEXT Yves Smith at NakenCapitalism discusses how Elizabeth Warren Attacks Beltway Powerhouse Third Way as Fronting for Wall Street Wow, the gloves are finally coming off. Elizabeth Warren has been making good use of her Senate bully pulpit in terms of keeping the excessive power of the big banks and the haplessness of regulators in the headlines. But as readers know, we’ve had our doubts as to how much in the way of tangible outcomes she could achieve from the Senate. ....... More important in her use of her Senate microphone is Warren’s ongoing campaign to move the Overton window to the left on basic economic issues for what remains of the US middle class. It’s vital to note that positions that are regularly depicted in the media as “liberal” or “progressive,” such as strengthening Social Security and Medicare (even if it means raising taxes) and cutting defense spending in fact poll with significant majorities, so they are in fact both popular and centrist for those outside the elites. But because, as political scientist has documented, American politics are driven not by voters but by powerful monied interests. And perversely, those groups on the whole seem to believe that bleeding ordinary Americans dry is a winning strategy for them. Short term, of course, it sure looks that way, but we look to be at the end of an economic paradigm, so how long they can keep that sort of thing up remains to be seen. Two operatives from the Washington think tank Third Way put Warren in their crosshairs for daring to suggest that Social Security be strengthened and the rich be taxed more in a Wall Street Journal op-ed on Monday. It’s critical to understand that Third Way presents itself as “centrist” which is code for “oligarchy promoters pretending to be reasonable” and has consistently advocated gutting Social Security and Medicare. As Dave Dayen wrote in 2010:
    I know the world-weary journalist pose is to huff that the catfood commission will go nowhere, that the recommendations released today are politically impossible, and that it’s not worth getting worked up about. Indeed, any proposal that both Grover Norquist and Paul Krugman can take time beating about the face and mouth doesn’t appear to have a constituency. But there is a constituency for this, and it begins and ends with Third Way, who wastes no time in telling the world that they can only be real manly men if they support cutting Social Security and health care for the poor, the elderly and veterans….The only proposals that are “serious” in Washington, according to Jonathan Cowan of Third Way, are the ones that hurt people who have no voice in the political process. In the name of “sacrifice.”
.......With this as background, the Wall Street Journal attack by the Third Way’s Jon Cowen and Jim Kessler on Warren was frontal: "COWAN AND KESSLER: ECONOMIC POPULISM IS DEAD FOR DEMOCRATS." The article contained the usual canards about pending Social Security “insolvency” and played the predictable age cohort warfare card. In fact, merely raising the cap on payroll taxes would be a sufficient fix; Dean Baker points out that the cost of Social Security will increase from 5% of GDP to 6%, which if the US focused on job and wage growth, is entirely manageable. But more striking than its predictable cherrypicking of information was its histrionic tone: “disastrous” “fantasy” “even more reckless” “collision course”. The funny bit is that the progress of budget talks flies in the face of these screechy claims about political and economic viability. In sharp contrast with the high drama failed budget talks of 2011 and earlier this year, the negotiators are focusing on the most narrow deal possible to avert either another shutdown or more severe sequester cuts kicking in. The Republicans are finally hoist on the spending cut petard. Enough of them are in districts with military bases where deeper cuts (which the next round of the sequester would impose) would be toxic politically. So they are willing to make concessions. And from what I am told, neither side is willing to table the politically contentious issue of Social Security cuts in the form of chained CPI. Warren did not take this insult lying down. She issued a letter to Jamie Dimon, Lloyd Blankfein, John Stumpf, Brian Moynihan, Michael Corbat and James Gorman asking them to voluntarily disclose their contributions to think tanks. Her message was clear: this isn’t technically lobbying but we all know how this game is really played. ....... This of course tees up an easy follow up: she can pursue the CEOs in future hearings if they don’t cooperate, and threaten legislation aimed at the banks. Given the banks’ welfare queen status, legislation aimed at them would get favorable media coverage and would also dent the perceived legitimacy of think tanks. Politico credits Team Warren with having landed a blow: ......... Schwartz’s outrage is awfully disingenuous, given Third Way’s longstanding agenda of cutting down Social Security and Medicare. But the fact that someone who has a prominent role with Third Way has criticized a prominent article and distanced herself from one of its core positions is a sign the tectonic plates in the Beltway are moving. Heretofore, it was not just safe to attack “entitlements,” it was orthodox. That finally appears to be changing, and not a moment too soon.
Hear! Hear! But before you get too excited The Boston Herald's "Truth Squad" tells us Elizabeth Warren pledges she won't run for president in 2016. Reporting for Suzanne Goldenberg in Washington and Ed Pilkington in New York find ALEC calls for penalties on 'freerider' homeowners in assault on clean energy An alliance of corporations and conservative activists is mobilising to penalise homeowners who install their own solar panels – casting them as "freeriders" – in a sweeping new offensive against renewable energy, the Guardian has learned. Over the coming year, the American Legislative Exchange Council (Alec) will promote legislation with goals ranging from penalising individual homeowners and weakening state clean energy regulations, to blocking the Environmental Protection Agency, which is Barack Obama's main channel for climate action. Details of Alec's strategy to block clean energy development at every stage – from the individual rooftop to the White House – are revealed as the group gathers for its policy summit in Washington this week. About 800 state legislators and business leaders are due to attend the three-day event, which begins on Wednesday with appearances by the Wisconsin senator Ron Johnson and the Republican budget guru and fellow Wisconsinite Paul Ryan. For 2014, Alec plans to promote a suite of model bills and resolutions aimed at blocking Barack Obama from cutting greenhouse gas emissions, and state governments from promoting the expansion of wind and solar power through regulations known as Renewable Portfolio Standards. Documents obtained by the Guardian show the core elements of its strategy began to take shape at the previous board meeting in Chicago in August, with meetings of its energy, environment and agriculture subcommittees. Further details of Alec's strategy were provided by John Eick, the legislative analyst for Alec's energy, environment and agriculture program. Eick told the Guardian the group would be looking closely in the coming year at how individual homeowners with solar panels are compensated for feeding surplus electricity back into the grid. "This is an issue we are going to be exploring," Eick said. He said Alec wanted to lower the rate electricity companies pay homeowners for direct power generation – and maybe even charge homeowners for feeding power into the grid. "As it stands now, those direct generation customers are essentially freeriders on the system. They are not paying for the infrastructure they are using. In effect, all the other non direct generation customers are being penalised," he said. ........... Gabe Elsner, director of the Energy and Policy Institute, said the attack on small-scale solar was part of the larger Alec project to block clean energy. "They are trying to eliminate pro-solar policies in the states to protect utility industry profits," he said. The group sponsored at least 77 energy bills in 34 states last year. The measures were aimed at opposing renewable energy standards, pushing through the Keystone XL pipeline project, and barring oversight on fracking, according to an analysis by the Centre for Media and Democracy. Until now, the biggest target in Alec's sights were state Renewable Portfolio Standards, which require electricity companies to source a share of their power from wind, solar, biomass, or other clean energy. Such measures are seen as critical to reducing America's use of coal and oil, and to the fight against climate change. RPS are now in force in 30 states. In 2012, Alec drafted a model bill pushing for the outright repeal of RPS. ................ The other key agenda item for Alec's meeting this week is the EPA. The group is looking at two proposals to curb the agency's powers – one to shut the EPA out of any meaningful oversight of fracking, and the other to block action on climate change. A model bill endorsed by the Alec board of directors last August would strip the EPA of power to shut down a frack site or oil industry facility. That would leave oversight of an industry that has to date fracked 2m wells in 20 states to a patchwork of local authorities that have vastly different standards of environmental protection. The model bill would explicitly bar the EPA from shutting down any oil or gas well or facility in any of them, limiting the agency's capacity to enforce the clean water and clean air acts. "The legislature declares that the United States Environmental Protection Agency … lacks the authority to deny permits of operation to these oil and gas wells and facilities," the bill reads. Eick said the bill was in keeping with the group's broader philosophy of expanding power to the states. ............ Environmental lawyers said the resolution amounted to a "new manifesto" against the EPA regulating carbon pollution. "They don't want the EPA to regulate greenhouse gas emissions," said Ann Weeks, legal director for the Clean Air Task Force. She disputed a number of claims within the Alec resolution – including the assertion that reducing carbon pollution would lead to an 80% rise in electricity prices. Economic analyses by the EPA and others have suggested those rises would be fairly limited. "They will probably tell you they don't want the EPA to regulate anything so it is in their interest to turn what the EPA has proposed into something that is grotesque and unreasonable, which I don't think is true," Weeks said. LAST WORD: Writing for the World Socialist Web Site Bill Van Auken explains Why imperialism mourns Mandela speaking diretly to the mass media frenzy The death of Nelson Mandela at the age of 95 has touched off a worldwide exercise in official mourning that is virtually without precedent. No doubt working people in South Africa and internationally pay tribute to the courage and sacrifice demonstrated by the African National Congress leader—as well as thousands of others who lost their lives and freedom—during his long years of illegality, persecution and imprisonment under the hated Apartheid regime. Capitalist governments and the corporate-controlled media the world over, however, have rushed to offer condolences for their own reasons. These include heads of states that supported South Africa’s apartheid rule and aided in the capture and imprisonment of Mandela as a “terrorist” half a century ago. ....... What is noteworthy in the sanctimonious blather served up by the media on the occasion of Mandela’s death is the way in which a man whose life is inextricably bound up with the history and politics of South Africa is turned into an entirely apolitical icon, a plaster saint embodying, in the words of Obama, “being guided not by hate, but by love.” What is it that the capitalist oligarchs in country after country really mourn in the death of Mandela? It is clearly not his will to resist an oppressive system—that is something they are all prepared to punish with imprisonment or drone missile assassination. Rather, the answer is to be found in the present social and political crisis gripping South Africa, as well as the historic role played by Mandela in preserving capitalist interests in the country under the most explosive conditions. It is significant that on the day before Mandela’s death, South Africa’s Institute for Justice and Reconciliation issued an annual report showing that those surveyed felt overwhelmingly that class inequality represented the paramount issue in South African society, with twice as many (27.9 percent) citing class as opposed to race (14.6 percent) as the “greatest impediment to national reconciliation.” Two decades after the ending of the legal racial oppression of Apartheid, the class question has come to the fore in South Africa, embodied in the heroic mass struggles of the miners and other sections of the working class that have come into direct conflict with the African National Congress. These eruptions found their sharpest expression in the August 16, 2012 massacre of 34 striking miners at the Lonmin platinum mine in Marikana, a mass killing whose bloody images recalled the worst episodes of Apartheid repression at Sharpeville and Soweto. This time, however, the bloodletting was orchestrated by the ANC government and its allies in the official trade union federation, COSATU. South Africa today ranks as the most socially unequal country on the face of the planet. The gap between wealth and poverty and the number of poor South Africans are both greater than they were when Mandela walked out of prison in 1990. ............. Meanwhile, under the mantle of programs like “Black Economic Empowerment,” a thin layer of black ex-ANC leaders, trade union officials and small businessmen has become very rich from incorporation onto boards of directors, acquisitions of stock, and contracts with the government. It is under these conditions that ANC governments that have followed Mandela’s, first under Thabo Mbeki and now Jacob Zuma, have come to be seen as the corrupt representatives of a wealthy ruling establishment. Mandela, who played a less and less active role in the country’s political life, nevertheless served as a facade for the ANC, which traded on his history of sacrifice and his image of humble dignity to hide its own corrupt self-dealing. Behind the facade, of course, Mandela and his family raked in millions, with his children and grandchildren active in some 200 private companies. The international and South African mining corporations, banks and other firms, together with the most conscious elements within the Apartheid regime, recognized that the ANC—and Mandela in particular—were the only ones capable of quelling a revolutionary upheaval. It was for that purpose he was released from prison 23 years ago. Utilizing the prestige it had acquired through its association with armed struggle and its socialistic rhetoric, the ANC worked to contain the mass uprising that it neither controlled nor desired and subordinate it to a negotiated settlement that preserved the wealth and property of the international corporations and the country’s white capitalist rulers. Before taking office, Mandela and the ANC ditched large parts of the movement’s program, particularly those planks relating to public ownership of the banks, mines and major industries. They signed a secret letter of intent with the International Monetary Fund pledging to implement free market policies, including drastic budget cuts, high interest rates and the scrapping of all barriers to the penetration of international capital. In doing so, Mandela realized a vision he had enunciated nearly four decades earlier, when he wrote that enacting the ANC’s program would mean: “For the first time in the history of this country, the non-European bourgeoisie will have the opportunity to own in their own name and right mills and factories, and trade and private enterprise will boom and flourish as never before.” However, this “flourishing,” which boosted the profits of the transnational mining firms and banks while creating a layer of black multi-millionaires, has been paid for through the intensified exploitation of South African workers. The international and South African mining corporations, banks and other firms, together with the most conscious elements within the Apartheid regime, recognized that the ANC—and Mandela in particular—were the only ones capable of quelling a revolutionary upheaval. It was for that purpose he was released from prison 23 years ago. Utilizing the prestige it had acquired through its association with armed struggle and its socialistic rhetoric, the ANC worked to contain the mass uprising that it neither controlled nor desired and subordinate it to a negotiated settlement that preserved the wealth and property of the international corporations and the country’s white capitalist rulers. Before taking office, Mandela and the ANC ditched large parts of the movement’s program, particularly those planks relating to public ownership of the banks, mines and major industries. They signed a secret letter of intent with the International Monetary Fund pledging to implement free market policies, including drastic budget cuts, high interest rates and the scrapping of all barriers to the penetration of international capital. However, this “flourishing,” which boosted the profits of the transnational mining firms and banks while creating a layer of black multi-millionaires, has been paid for through the intensified exploitation of South African workers. The ignominious path trod by the ANC was not unique. During the same period, virtually every one of the so-called national liberation movements, from the Palestine Liberation Organization to the Sandinistas, pursued similar policies, making their peace with imperialism and pursuing wealth and privilege for a narrow layer. In this context, the death of Mandela underscores the fact that there exists no way forward for the working class in South Africa—and for that matter, worldwide—outside of the class struggle and socialist revolution. A new party must be built, founded on the Theory of Permanent Revolution elaborated by Leon Trotsky, which established that in countries like South Africa, the national bourgeoisie, dependent upon imperialism and fearful of revolution from below, is incapable of resolving the fundamental democratic and social tasks facing the masses. This can be achieved only by the working class taking power into its own hands and overthrowing capitalism, as part of the international struggle to put an end to imperialism and establish world socialism. So don't bother with any Beltway Bubalas this morning. Instead click away here on Brick TeeVee and find some real information, news and opinion relevant to what's really happening! Thanks for stopping in, please share with your peeps and we'll be back next week for more survival wisdom amid the glittering hyperbole of the CorporoPress!


Democracy NOW!

Headlines Monday, Dec. 2, 2013

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GRITtv GRITtv @ with Laura Flanders
»»» FEATURED SHOW John Fullerton on College Investment Funds: Are Fossil Fuels the New Slavery? "If we look back maybe even only five years from now, and substitute the word fossil fuel with the word slavery we will be aghast at how we thought about this issue. Our leading public institutions are letting us down." more......

»»» SUNDAY FOOTBALL NIGHT IN AMERICA on NBC Panthers @ Saints 8:30 pm et
»»» MONDAY NIGHT FOOTBALL on ESPN Cowboys @ Bears 8:30 pm et
»»» NBA on TNT THURSDAY DOUBLEHEADER Clippers @ Nets 8 pm et THEN Rockets @ Trailblazers 10:30 pm et

The 1st Amendment is Our Permit Our permit to occupy is The First Amendment. Quickly sign the following statement which will be delivered to mayors, police chiefs and major media across the country:

    Our permit to occupy public squares and parks is in The First Amendment, which affirms "the right of the people peaceably to assemble, and to petition the Government for a redress of grievances." When people across the Middle East occupied public squares, leaders in Washington mostly cheered those protesters and warned Middle Eastern governments not to use force to clear them. Those other societies don’t have a First Amendment. Yet Washington affirmed the universal right to assembly and protest. We do have a First Amendment. The force being used to clear nonviolent protesters from public squares in our country is unacceptable. It must stop. &! A bailout of the people by the people Rolling Jubilee is a Strike Debt project that buys debt for pennies on the dollar, but instead of collecting it, abolishes it. Together we can liberate debtors at random through a campaign of mutual support, good will, and collective refusal. Debt resistance is just the beginning. Join us as we imagine and create a new world based on the common good, not Wall Street profits. ADDENDUM: Naked Capitalism reports Top Tax Expert Confirms Our Doubts About Occupy Wall Street’s Debt Buying/Forgiveness Scheme

STOP the ACHE NEW WEBSITE! and Appalachian Community HEALTH EMERGENCY Advocating for government action and protection of the public from the health crisis in mountain top removal communities. The A.C.H.E. Act Is Re-Introduced In The 113th Congress!

    Washington, DC – Today a group of U.S. House of Representatives lawmakers introduced the Appalachian Community Health Emergency Act (ACHE Act, H.R. 526) to protect Appalachian families and communities from the nation’s most extreme form of coal mining, mountaintop removal. The Appalachian Community Health Emergency Act’s leading sponsors are Rep. John Yarmuth (D-KY) and Rep. Louise Slaughter (D-NY), joined by original cosponsors Rep. Earl Blumenauer (D-OR), Rep. John Conyers (D-MI), Rep. Rush Holt (D-NJ), Rep. Raul Grijalva (D-AZ), Rep. John Sarbanes (D-MD), Rep. Jim Moran (D-VA), Rep. Donna Edwards (D-MD), Rep. Judy Chu (D-CA), Rep. Keith Ellison (D-MN), Rep. Charles Rangel (D-NY), Rep. Jared Huffman (D-CA), Rep. Barbara Lee (D-CA), Rep. Michael Honda (D-CA), Rep. Peter DeFazio (D-OR), Rep. Matt Cartwright (D-PA), Rep. Rosa DeLauro (D-CT), Rep. Lucille Roybal-Allard (D-CA), Rep. Chellie Pingree (D-ME), Rep. Janice Schakowksy (D-IL), Rep. Jim McDermott (D-WA), Rep. Eleanor Holmes Norton (D-DC), and Rep. Jared Polis (DCO). a project of the Democracy Collaborative at the University of Maryland brings together, for the first time, information about the broad range of community wealth building activity. Featuring Overview: The Cleveland Model—How the Evergreen Cooperatives are Building Community Wealth Something important is happening in Cleveland. The Democracy Collaborative—the host of—in partnership with the Cleveland Foundation, the Ohio Employee Ownership Center, Shorebank Enterprise Cleveland, the City of Cleveland, and the city's major hospitals and universities—is helping to implement a new model of large-scale worker-owned and community-benefiting businesses. The Evergreen Cooperative Initiative is beginning to build serious momentum in one of the cities most dramatically impacted by the nation's decaying economy. Increasingly, this model is being referred to nationally as The Cleveland Model. Initial planning is now underway to assist other cities in Ohio and nationwide to replicate and adapt this innovative approach to economic development, green job creation, and neighborhood stabilization. Find more many resources at!

NET NEUTRALITY! Declaration of Internet Freedom Tired of fighting bad bills like SOPA, PIPA and CISPA? Want to stand up against those who are trying to control what we do and say online? It's time for something different. A group of more than 1,500 organizations, academics, startup founders and tech innovators has come together to produce a Declaration of Internet Freedom, a set of five principles that put forward a positive vision of the open Internet. Our goal: Get millions of Internet users to sign on to this Declaration. Build political power for Internet users to make sure that we get a seat at the table whenever, and wherever, the future of the Internet is being decided. It's time to stop playing defense and start going on the offensive. The open Internet is central to people’s freedom to communicate, share, advocate and innovate in the 21st century. But powerful interests want to censor free speech, block the sharing of information, hinder innovation and control how Internet users get online. And all too often, people in power are making political decisions behind closed doors about how the Internet should operate — and they're doing this without the involvement of actual Internet users. The result: policies that could close down the open Internet and destroy our freedom to connect. It’s time for us to reclaim the Internet for its users. Take action now and sign the Declaration of Internet Freedom. ACTION! Meet the New CISPA. Same as the Old CISPA. Last year, thanks to a public outcry, the effort to pass overreaching cybersecurity legislation stalled in the Senate. Now supporters have reintroduced the House version of that legislation — the Cyber Intelligence Sharing and Protection Act (CISPA). The “new” version is in fact identical to the original CISPA — and poses the same threat to our digital civil liberties. If CISPA becomes law, it will be a major blow to our online privacy. But more than that, CISPA’s passage would have a chilling effect on our freedom to connect online. We won’t feel as free to state unpopular opinions, or to speak truth to power, if we know that Big Brother could get a feed of everything we say and do. This is not what the free and open Internet is about. We must tell Congress: Vote NO on CISPA and bury this bill for good.

NEW!!! Stop Media Consolidation! Federal Communications Commission Chairman Julius Genachowski is trying to change the agency’s ownership rules to pave the way for Murdoch to get exactly what he wants. Worse, Genachowski and Murdoch are keeping this all very hush-hush, hoping you won't notice.3 These changes wouldn’t just benefit Murdoch. If the FCC proposal passes, one company could own the major daily newspaper, two TV stations and up to eight radio stations in your town. And that one company could be your Internet provider, too. What is the FCC thinking?!? We can still stop the agency from taking this perilous step — but we have less than a month to do it. By taking action, you’re joining a movement of millions who are working to stop big media from getting even bigger. Please take action today. Click HERE to view our infographic and send a message to the FCC! More info at Another FCC Cave-In: Julius Genachowski’s Media Consolidation Christmas Gift to Murdoch at! And Sign Senator Bernie Sanders petition to the FCC Protect Media Diversity: Stop Media Consolidation!

CAMPAIGN FOR AMERICA'S FUTURE American Majority Rejects Washington Austerity Consensus – And We Demand Media Coverage by Roger Hickey, President, Campaign for America's Future: No more silent majority. The Campaign for America’s Future is joining with the Center for Economic and Policy Research (whose Co-Director, Dean Baker blogs regularly about economic bias in the media) and with FAIR (Fairness and Accuracy in Reporting) to monitor the media’s coverage and representation of the American Majority views as they go into covering the big deficit fight. But we want to enlist YOU too. Send us accounts of unbalanced coverage in the national media and in your local newspapers and television. Call up reporters, editors, assignment people and tell them when they are under-representing the views of the American Majority. We should have at least half the experts, pundits, quotes and real people represented in their coverage. In a debate as important as the one we are going into, we can’t allow the media to ignore the American Majority. Much more at

MOVE TO AMEND! SIGN HERE NOW! And check out more actions on the Move to Amend Calendar for more! Also visit Rep Alan Grayson's site GET INVOLVED! And Alan Grayson is BACK in the 113th Congress! Help out at and check out his latest effort!

REPRESENT.US IT’S TIME TO GET MONEY OUT OF POLITICS SO THE GOVERNMENT CAN REPRESENT US. Represent.Us is a fresh campaign to pass the American Anti-Corruption Act: a law that would overhaul campaign finance, impose strict lobbying and conflict of interest laws, and end secret political money. We are mobilizing millions of Americans — conservatives and progressives, young and old, every issue group fighting K Street, online and offline — to join this campaign. Represent.Us is not just building a movement to pass the Act. The campaign will use hard-hitting accountability tactics to unseat politicians who fail to endorse the Act. If passed, the Act will completely reshape American politics and policy-making and give people a voice. See this Guest Blog at Greenpeace by Executive Director Josh Silver The $6 Billion Auction: Finally, A Plan to Get Money Out of Politics for more information!

SUPPORT THE TROOPS WHO REFUSE TO FIGHT See and Bradley Manning Support Network From the Bradley Manning Support Network Announcing the Private Manning Support Network! August 26, 2013, By attorney David Coombs and the Private Manning Support Network (formerly the Bradley Manning Support Network). Additional clarification on PVT Chelsea (formerly Bradley) Manning's request regarding her gender and name. With your continued support, our network will continue its advocacy efforts in support our heroic WikiLeaks whistle-blower through this new phase of her life. ....... UPDATE! PVT Chelsea Manning tells TIME Magazine what she's thankful for this Thanksgiving TIME Magazine asked WikiLeaks whistleblower PVT Chelsea Manning what she's thankful for. Her answer was published alongside Michelle Obama's, Joe Biden's, and 14 others. Many people working for the betterment of society will appreciate her answer. ..... AND Update 12/5/13: Manning-Assange chat log publicly viewable for first time at While anonymous, Assange and Manning displayed their interest in information and democracy through discussion of information security, crowdsourcing the constitution in Iceland, the election in Iraq, and California's Proposition 8. .....

DONATE YOUR OLD CELL PHONES TO T.J. MARTELL FOUNDATION Help save lives. Donate your old & used iPhone, Blackberries, Droid and other phones to help the T.J. Martell Foundations fund life-saving cancer & AIDS research. For more information, go to

CELLULAR PHONE TASK FORCE EDUCATION, ADVOCACY, SUPPORT at The Cellular Phone Task Force is dedicated to halting the expansion of wireless technology because it cannot be made safe. We provide: education to the public concerning electromagnetic pollution (electrosmog); advocacy for an electromagnetically cleaner environment; support for individuals disabled by radiation from wireless technology and other sources. WATCH THIS MOVIE at Top Documentary Films Resonance: Beings of Frequency Now we live an an ocean of electromagnetic radiation. It’s all around us now, invisible, but we know it’s there. Every time you lift up your mobile phone you know it’s there. It is very hard to turn the clock back, in fact it is impossible, but we need to be aware of the adverse health effects so that we can have the choice of taking precautions against the exposures. How we could have possibly thought that putting microwaves to our brain was safe. We just don’t fully understand what we’re doing. "Resonance: Beings of Frequency" is the first documentary to investigate the actual mechanisms by which mobile phone technology can cause cancer. The film takes a deeper look at how humanity is reacting to the most profound environmental change the planet has ever seen. Read more HERE!!

The essential guide for watching government propaganda!
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IRAQ: 4,486 US Military Dead as of April 21, 2012
AFGHANISTAN: 2,292 US Military Dead as of Dec. 6, 2013
The Obameter: Tracking Obama's Campaign Promises
MOCKINGBIRD: The Subversion Of The Free Press By The CIA
Who Owns The Media? The 6 Monolithic Corporations That Control Almost Everything We Watch, Hear And Read
Manufacturing Consent: Noam Chomsky and the Media at informationclearinghouse
R.I.P. Peter Wintonick "Manufacturing Consent" Director Peter Wintonick Dead at 60

  • This Week (ABC) Host George Stephanopoulos
    • Remembering Nelson Mandela

  • Face The Nation (CBS) Host Bob Schiefer - This Sunday on Face the Nation, we’ll conclude our coverage of the 50th Anniversary of the assassination of President John F. Kennedy and its impact on America.
    • Remembering Nelson Mandela

  • 60 Minutes (CBS)
    60 Minutes apologizes for Benghazi report
    • Mandela: 60 Minutes pays tribute to the late Nelson Mandela, whose wise use of reconciliation in his struggle against the racist apartheid system helped avoid a civil war and peacefully gave birth to the democratic republic of South Africa. Bob Simon reports.
    • Preview: Survivor: Former Navy SEAL Marcus Luttrell recalls the 2005 battle in Afghanistan he alone survived, a fire fight that at the time, resulted in the largest loss of life for Naval Special Warfare since WWII. Anderson Cooper reports.

  • Meet the Press (NBC) Host David Gregory
    Microsoft, NBC News Dissolve Joint Venture NBC is buying Microsoft's 50 percent interest in the MSNBC website for an undisclosed amount. will be rebranded as, and readers who logged into late Sunday were automatically redirected to Microsoft is preparing to launch its own news service this fall. Although he declined to provide many details about the operation general manager of Bob Visse said the news staff will be about the same size as the roughly 100 people who created original content for the "There is no question that we are going to have more flexibility to make our own decisions," said Vivian Schiller, NBC News' chief digital officer. "This is really an amicable breakup. We think competition will make us better." Okay then.
    • This Sunday: Remembering Mandela

  • State of the Union With Candy Crowley (CNN) Sunday at 9 am ET and Noon ET.
    • House Homeland Security Committee Chairman Rep. Michael McCaul
    • House Intelligence Committee member Rep. Adam Schiff
    • ROUNDTABLE: economist Mark Zandi, Annie Lowrey of the New York Times and the American Enterprise Institute’s Kevin Hassett.
    • ROUNDTABLE II: DNC Communications Director Mo Elleithee, Former Ohio Secretary of State Ken Blackwell and USA Today’s Susan Page

  • HEAD ON RADIO with Bob Kincaid
    Headon Radio with Bob Kincaid 6 PM Eastern, 3 PM Pacific, 2300 GMT. Duration: 3 hrs. To be part of Conversation Radio call toll-free (877) 443-2366, or use our Liberal community line at 304-658-3333. Email bob [at] headonradio [dot] com during the show!
    • FRONT PORCH FRIDAY! Friday wrap with a H.O.R.N. listener roundtable! Pull up a cold one! Listen NOW HERE - Friday, December 6th, 2013 (mp3)! Amen to the White Rose Society! Bob's show archives at the White Rose HERE! Keep Bob on the air! Donate to Head On HERE! And join Coal River Mountain Watch at!

  • YOUR GREEN NEWS REPORT With Brad Friedman & Desi Doyen!
    The Green News Report with Brad Friedman & Desi Doyen: 6 minutes of green news, politics, analysis & snarky comment! BOOKMARK NOW!
    'Green News Report' - December 5, 2013 IN TODAY'S RADIO REPORT: Obama 'finds the courage': orders federal government to increase use of renewable energy; Maine Gov. Paul LePage (R) celebrates melting Arctic; ALEC and Koch Bros. launch an attack on solar; Solar panel maker takes on Germany's electric utilities; PLUS: The Heartland Institute is lying again, this time about the American Meteorological Society ... All that and more in today's Green News Report!
    • IN 'GREEN NEWS EXTRA' (see link): No climate change deniers in the global re-insurance industry; Abrupt climate change: what's in store for us?; Big Oil already prepared to pay carbon tax; Massive winter storms assault UK, EU, US; Experts worried rise in TX earthquakes caused by fracking injection wells; Hitachi unveils storage for solar, wind; Chicago tests pollution-eating concrete; We're #1: Lake Superior heating up faster than any other lake on Earth ... PLUS: Nelson Mandela led coalition of global elders to halt climate change ... and much, MUCH more! ...
    'Green News Report' - December 3, 2013 IN TODAY'S RADIO REPORT: It's official: Hottest spring on record Down Under; Big Fossil Fuel = Big Tobacco; BP suit halts Gulf Oil Spill compensation; New rules for toxic flame retardants; Say goodbye to antibacterial soaps; PLUS: Wall Street may finally be looking to cover its (unburnable) assets ... All that and more in today's Green News Report!
    • BRADBLOG UPDATE! CBS' Logan to Take 'Leave' After Bogus Benghazi Report 60 Minutes correspondent and producer Max McClellan are out, for now, following internal report on failures leading to discredited story...
    • BRADCAST! 'BradCast': Dr. Michael Mann, The 'Hockey Stick' & the Very Center of the Climate Wars Brad's KPFK/Pacifica Radio intvw with perhaps the most attacked climatologist in the world, who also created one very famous graph...
    • BRADBLOG UPDATE! CLEAR CHANNEL TO DUMP ALL PROGRESSIVE TALK RADIO IN L.A., SAN FRANCISCO Largest and most progressive media markets in the nation will no longer have commercial progressive talk over our public airwaves...
    • BRADBLOG UPDATE! Dumb or Dumber?: Maine Guv Celebrates 'Positive Effects' of Global Warming Is Paul LePage the dumbest governor in the nation? Or in history? His comments on melting Arctic makes powerful case for both...

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    The Peter B. Collins Show covers American news and politics from the Left Coast. Veteran talk radio personality Peter B. Collins, based in San Francisco, delivers fresh interviews, commentary and analysis on a range of important topics, with views and voices you don’t often find in the corporate media.
    Holiday Break and Website Changes
      To my valued listeners: We are making some changes to the website and our terms, effective in January. We will continue to offer free podcasts–my new daily news and commentary. Our in-depth interviews will be available for $1 per episode, or to subscribers who pay $5 per month or more. Loyal listeners who simply can’t afford it should send an email to, as we will be offering a limited number of scholarships to our friends who are hurting during these tough times. More information will be posted as we complete the revisions. I’m grateful to each of you for listening and supporting this work, and hope that the new model will enable us to keep it going well into the future. All the best, -pbc
    • Peter B Collins, Truthout | Op-Ed An Insider's View of the Progressive Talk Radio Devolution
    • PBC News & Comment 3 Dec 2013 PBC News & Comment: European Court Hears Evidence of US Torture of Abu Zubaydah in Poland Lawyers for Zubaydah and al-Nashiri present evidence of torture at black site in Poland to European Court of Human Rights….
    • PBC News & Comment 4 Dec 2013 PBC News & Comment: NSA Dragnet Collect 5 Billion Cellphone Locations Daily Latest Ed Snowden leak via Washington Post: NSA collects cellphone location data on Americans, “incidentally”, keeps it “intentionally” ……
    • PBC Standard Podcast Dec. 3, 201350 Years After Birmingham Church Bombing, Investigative Reporter Stuart Wexler Reveals New Evidence, Despite FBI Stonewalling
    • PBC Standard Podcast Dec. 6, 2013 Boiling Frogs: FBI Whistleblower Coleen Rowley on Meeting Ed Snowden in Moscow, and the Importance of His Leaks

  • Ring of Fire Radio
    Find us at and hosted by Robert F. Kennedy Jr., Mike Papantonio and Sam Seder
    Ring of Fire Radio - GoLeft TV - Robert F. Kennedy, Mike Papantonio, Sam Seder - Politics, Commentary, and News.
    This Weekend on Ring of Fire Radio! Dec. 6, 2013 Saturdays at 3 o’clock Eastern, rebroadcasts Sunday nights at 8 pm Eastern.
    • ACLU staff attorney Patrick Toomey joins us to discuss the ACLU’s lawsuit against the NSA.
    • Michael Artz from the American Federation of State, County, and Municipal Employees will tell us what the Detroit bankruptcy ruling means for public pensions.
    • Dave Zirin from Edge of Sports will tell us about the lingering problem of racism in college football.
    • And Larry Cohen, president of the Communication Workers of America, will be here to talk about his union’s fight against the Trans Pacific Partnership.
    • NEW! This Week on Ring of Fire on Free Speech TV! Nov 23, 2013 Sundays at NOON!
    »» David Pakman is going to tell us how corporations are using private companies to spy on non-profit groups.
    »» Attorney Mike Burg will explain how Wall Street’s wealth hoarding is causing more and more Americans to wind up in prison.
    »» Linda Lipsen, from the American Association for Justice will talk about the FDA proposal to finally enforce rules for generic drugs – a move that will help save the lives of consumers
    »» Attorney Tim O’Brien is going to tell us how the US Chamber of Commerce is trying to dismantle anti corruption laws.
    »» Attorney Howard Nations will talk about the decline of American law schools, and the decline in the caliber of attorneys.
    »» Securities attorney James Kauffman is going to tell us why the JP Morgan fraud settlement is even less than a slap on the wrist for corrupt bankers.
    Ring of Fire’s Weekly Rewind Posted on December 7, 2013 by Joshua Schwitzerlett - Ring of Fire’s top stories from the past week.
    • VIDEO! THE HISTORY OF CORPORATE CORRUPTION & FRAUD with Robert Kennedy Jr & Mike Papantonio “Call us if you have a personal story about Fraud on Taxpayers or False Claims for Payment made by Corportations at 1-866-389-FIRE (3473) or contact us by email at if you have evidence of fraud that robbed taxpayer dollars. If our government is paying too much due to fraud by a corporation, Ring of Fire wants to do a story on it.”
    Ring of Fire’s Weekly Rewind Posted on November 30, 2013 by Joshua Schwitzerlett
    • VIDEO! Pap and Seder: America Desperate for Minimum Wage Increase (VIDEO) Ring of Fire’s Mike Papantonio and Sam Seder discuss where the federal minimum wage should be in light of recent arguments for and against its increase.
    • VIDEO! Papantonio: Healthcare Costs Killing American Dream (VIDEO) This segment originally aired on the December 1st, 2013 episode of Ring of Fire on Free Speech TV. Americans pay more in healthcare costs than the rest of the modern world. These costs are crippling families all over the country. Ring of Fire’s Mike Papantonio discusses this with attorney Dave TeSelle.
    • Join our blog at You can now SUBSCRIBE TO OUR PODCAST by clicking on the "Podcast" tab at the top of the Ring of Fire blog. Please help support progressive radio by signing up! Ring of Fire Radio Ring of Fire, hosted by Robert F. Kennedy Jr., Mike Papantonio and Sam Seder: Saturdays at 3 o’clock Eastern, rebroadcasts 7-10 et Sunday evenings on Chicago's Progressive Talk WCPT AM & FM and 4 pm et on Sirius/XM 167 featuring The PAP Attack! "We’ll bring you the stories that the mainstream media didn’t feel like reporting this week."

  • Majority Report with Sam Seder Streaming LIVE weekdays 12 NOON et @!

    • MONDAY 12/2/13 Geoff Mulgan: Predators and Creators in Capitalism’s Future
    • TUESDAY 12/3/13 Dean Baker: Getting Back to Full Employment: A Better Bargain for Working People
    • WEDNESDAY 12/4/13 Chris Savage: The Real Story of Detroit Bankruptcy & Attack On Pensions
    • THURSDAY 12/5/13 Josh Orton: Exposing Democratic Corporate Shills
    • FRIDAY 12/6/13 Casual Friday: Cliff Schecter & Tom Scharpling
    • MORE Podcast Interviews at!

  • KEISER REPORT Podcasts and more @!
    "HI Y'ALL! Tell the people! Tell the people!"
    WHO IS MAX KEISER? Max Keiser is a financial expert, Prediction Markets analyst, inventor and filmmaker. He is the creator of the Hollywood Stock Exchange (HSX) the first Prediction Market. Max Keiser co-hosts "The Truth About Markets" on ResonanceFM 104.4 in London. He also produces and presents documentary films covering markets and finance for Al Jazeera’s "People & Power" series. Max Keiser started his career on Wall Street in 1983. He is the creator of KarmaBanque a site that enables activists to challenge corporate power.
    • VISIT!!! Crowd Funding for Pirates!
    • MaxKeiserTV on YouTube! MaxKeiserTV
    KEISER REPORT ON FACEBOOK STACY SUMMARY: For once and for all, here are our real Facebook pages, the other ones are fake. But if you feel like chatting to the fake ones, by all means, go ahead.
    »» Max Keiser
    »» Keiser Report
    »» Stacey Herbert
    The Federal Reserve 100th Anniversary Road Show Spectacular! by alexschaefer - Paint Provocateur Alex Schaefer wants to say “Happy Birthday, Federal Reserve!’ You made it to 100 years of conducting the nation’s monetary policy! Since mainstream media didn’t send a card, a painter, a protestor, a filmmaker, a freedom fighter and a mad crew are going on a road trip across the USA to visit all twelve of your branches to help you celebrate! Come rain or monkey shines, they are on a mission to throw the birthday party nightmares are made of. A party to highlight the historic END of the original 100 year charter the Federal Reserve Bank has with the U.S. Government December 23rd, 2013! CLICK HERE FOR THE CROWDFUNDING CAMPAIGN & HELP GET THE SHOW ON THE ROAD! Lots of great donation perks, all original works of art by Alex Schaefer and Cain Motter! This is a great way to collect some art AND help fund this amazing journey and film. It’s a win-win situation! Let’s some history and shake things up around here!
    Assange: How cryptography is a key weapon in the fight against empire states by maxkeiser - READ What began as a means of retaining individual freedom can now be used by smaller states to fend off the ambitions of larger ones (
    • VIDEO! World’s Best Economist Explains All In 8 1/2 Minutes by maxkeiser
    Iran Sanctions Bites the US in the A** as Iran Responds With Petro Gold System! by The Doc - Since June of 2012 I’ve been talking about Iran circumventing SWIFT and though it hurt their economy, initiating devastating inflation and great harm to the Iranian people, Iran has taken the hits from the sanctions but founded what could now be called the PETRO GOLD system. It’s allowed Iran to sell oil to China, India and Japan for gold. Iran was able to ship oil in shadow tankers, GPS turned off, receiving wheat, edible oils and gold in exchange. Dubai was a laundering point for the gold along with Turkey as a transhipment point the gold payments. Iran proved this system worked and it dovetails nicely into China’s plans. This may have been one of the most important puzzle pieces that came out our sanctions. The jailer may find he is a prisoner of his detainees when sanctions reverse course and bite the US in the a**. Click here for more on Iran’s development of a Petro gold trade system bypassing the US dollar.....
    The Spanish Government is Preparing Another Bailout of Billionaire Oligarchs Over the weekend, I covered the extraordinarily disturbing new law that just passed in Spain which essentially criminalizes protests and allows for up to 30,000 euro fines for simply wearing a mask. It’s all starting to make sense now, as the country’s Prime Minister Mariano Rajoy prepares a new oligarch bailout, this time of the country’s highway operators who of course must be saved at all costs. They know the protests are coming and they want to be able to deal with uppity peasants when they feel the need to get out into the streets. Truly despicable… Read the rest here.
    The Megaupload battle against copyright cartel mirrors BTC’s battle against Central Banks by maxkeiser - READ Megaupload Slams U.S. Secret Move to Share Evidence With Copyright Holders (
    • KEISER REPORT [KR531] Keiser Report: Banksters aka Tongue Eating Isopods We discuss the absurd tongue eating isopod sitting in the middle of the global financial system and what the system would look like with that parasite ripped out of the host economy. They look at Iceland and Kenya where parasites are being banished with old debt repudiation ideas and with revolutionary new crypto payment systems. In the second half, Max interviews futurist, IT architect and Free Software advocate, Arjen Kamphuis, about the internet in a post re-architected NSA world in which the free network is disintegrating but against which the likes of Google, Oracle and Microsoft are leveraged. They add up the costs to US corporations in lost revenue as nations across Europe and Latin America divorce themselves from industrial espionage on an industrial scale from America.
    • KEISER REPORT [KR532] Keiser Report: Banker Bego-crats We discuss the need for powers to stop the aggressive banker bego-crats constantly shaking down those passing the City. They look at ‘Goldman Sachs with guns’ in Japan and the shakedown unit at RBS and their threatening messages demanding money from small businesses. In the second half, Max interviews Ned Naylor Leyland of Quilter Cheviot Asset Management about the latest on the German and UK investigations into the manipulation of the gold fix. They look at infinite rehypothecation in the London Dustbin and the exit of Bart Chilton from the CFTC as the pin-up girl for silver price manipulation.
    • KEISER REPORT Keiser Report: Downing Street PantomimeWe discuss the major trade deal struck by David Cameron during his visit to China where the UK won the right to export pig semen. And despite the upbeat words during George Osborne’s Autumn Statement, Max and Stacy notice that the actual facts on the ground, from the biggest draw down on savings in 40 years to a £5000 collapse in median household income to a doubling of malnutrition cases at English hospitals, the real economy seems to be shrinking at an ever faster pace. In the second half, Max debunks George Osborne’s economic policies with the help of Professor Steve Keen, author of Debunking Economics. They discuss the bureau-crazies and the financial-political complex which has destroyed the economy and Keen notes that the Dodd-Frank Act got rid of Section 13.3 of the Federal Reserve Act which would have allowed the Federal Reserve to bailout the public rather than the banks.
    • THE TRUTH ABOUT MARKETS [TaM-1298] The Truth About Markets – 30 November 2013 Download show HERE (mp3)
    • Donate to ResonanceFM here!

  • The Scott Horton Radio Show
    Scott Horton is host of Antiwar Radio on Pacifica 90.7 FM KPFK in Los Angeles and KUCR 88.3 in Riverside, and the Scott Horton Show on No Agenda Radio. (You can listen live Monday through Friday from 3-5 PM Eastern HERE.) Plenty of archives too!
    • Scott Horton Radio Show Progress Report: All right, yall, welcome back to the show to the inaugural Scott Horton Show progress report! It’s been an eventful year since the show and I (amicably) parted ways with, so I thought I would highlight just a few of the show’s important milestones, as well as preview some of the exciting projects to look for in the near future. ........ The show on Pacifica KPFK 90.7 FM in L.A., still called Antiwar Radio, has now moved to join their Sunday morning public affairs line up (8:30 am pt), and remains the largest source of listeners, with 15,000-20,000 people tuning in weekly. The future: Liberty Express Radio is growing and bringing me along for the ride. The great Charles Goyette hooked me up with Alan Butler and the Liberty Express earlier this year, and what has been the daily replay there from 3-5 eastern time has become my best listened-to show. And now they’re adding my friend Tom Woods to the lineup from 2-3 PM. That does it. I’m making the switch! Starting Monday, October 14, the live show is moving to 3-5 PM Eastern time on, as well as NoAgenda and my own stream.......
    • Scott Horton Radio Show 12/05/13 Peter Jenkins: Peter Jenkins, former UK Ambassador to the IAEA and UN, discusses why nuclear-related sanctions on Iran are no longer justified and how the US Congress is sabotaging a settlement by refusing to lift sanctions in exchange for Iranian concessions.
    • Scott Horton Radio Show 12/06/13 Steve Horn: Steve Horn, a Madison, WI-based freelance investigative journalist, discusses Serbian activist Srdja Popovic’s collaboration with private intelligence firm Stratfor, and how Popovic’s CANVAS organization uses “soft power” to topple foreign governments that are disliked in Washington.
    • Scott Horton Radio Show 12/06/13 Mike Maharrey: Mike Maharrey, the Communications Director for the Tenth Amendment Center, discusses the NSA’s massive database of information codenamed FASCIA; the Tenth Amendment Center’s campaign to shut down NSA facilities by pressuring states to deny them water and electricity; and the progress being made in the fight against the federal war on drugs.
    • Visit his blog Stress. See for archives! Send emails to Scott at to help Scott keep his podcast going!
    • Older interviews at Antiwar Radio!

  • fauxnews
    • Sen Rand Paul (R-KY)
    • Pik Botha former Foreign Minister in South Africa during the last years of the apartheid era

~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~

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