Society's Child


Police State America: Cops have killed over 1000 people in 2015

© AP
A protestor stands in front of riot Police Monday, April 27, 2015, following the funeral of Freddie Gray in Baltimore.
Police have killed over 1,000 people in 2015, and about 20 percent of those killed were completely unarmed.

As of Monday evening, U.S. police had killed 1,024 people since the start of the year, according to The Counted, a continuously updated database of U.S. police killings maintained by The Guardian. Of the total, 203 victims of police were unarmed.

In November alone police killed 10 unarmed males, including Jamar Clark, the 24-year-old man whose death led to in ongoing protests in Minneapolis, and Jeremy Mardis, a six-year-old who was shot by police in Louisiana during a chase. (Body camera footage showed that the two officers involved in Mardis' death fired recklessly into the car driven by Chris Few, the boy's father, who was also injured in the incident. The two officers have been arrested.)

Despite claims America's police forces need to be highly armed in order to defend themselves against a "war on cops," just 34 police were fatally shot and three others died of assault in the line of duty so far this year, according to the Officer Down Memorial Page, which tracks police deaths in the United States.

Comment: The war on cops is a fraud. The amount of police officers who prey on citizens is unprecedented.


Chicago policeman charged with murder in 2014 shooting of black teen before video release

© Reuters/Cook County State's Attorney's Office/Handout via Reuters
Chicago police officer Jason Van Dyke is seen in an undated picture released by the Cook County State's Attorney's Office in Chicago, Illinois. Van Dyke was charged on Tuesday with first-degree murder in the October 2014 shooting of a black teenager, a state prosecutor said...
A white Chicago policeman was charged with murder on Tuesday in the October 2014 shooting of a black teenager, a day before the planned release of a video taken by a police vehicle's dashboard camera showing the young man was shot 16 times.

A state prosecutor, Anita Alvarez, said in a statement that the officer, Jason Van Dyke, was being processed at Chicago's main criminal courthouse and would appear at a bond hearing at noon CST (1:00 p.m. ET).

Last week, a Cook County judge ordered the release of the dashcam video showing the killing of 17-year-old Laquan McDonald, and Chicago authorities said they would make it public on Wednesday. The city has already paid McDonald's family a $5 million civil settlement even though they did not file a lawsuit.

Comment: Looks like public pressure and threat of violent protests helped bring about this conviction.

Brick Wall

Muslim refugees on what its like to live in Paris

© Natasha Noman
"I wish I can go back to Libya," Hussein, a refugee living on the outskirts of Paris, told Mic. "It's war, but at least it's better there."

Speaking in Arabic, Hussein was translated by Asma Ajroudi, a Tunisian freelance journalist working with refugees. Hussein feared that his family, who still live in Libya, would be targeted by ruling powers if he was critical of his country, so he requested anonymity.

"Journalists betrayed me," he said, regarding his initial hesitation to talk. "This is why I don't like speaking to them. Everyone says they are here to help and [to] tell our story, but once they get their money they are gone and they never come back."

Hussein said he was imprisoned in Libya for essentially being black.

Comment: One wonders why this last point would even be stressed three times in the article - since the vast majority of refugees are Muslim having escaped the ravages of the NATO/ISIL war of terror. In any case, Paris - and even all of France is quick becoming a cauldron of xenophobia, institutionalized racism, and police state totalitarianism that is sure to boil over into much more suffering for those who are seeking the safety of asylum.

Bizarro Earth

The unfolding European housing crisis

Property prices across almost all the 28 EU member states have increased and have grown faster than incomes. The price correction of the post 2008 era fizzled out due to zero interest rate policy by the global central banks. The price-income ratios are still not back in line, effectively creating another debt fuelled housing bubble.

The latest data available for poverty in the EU highlights that more than a third of the population is at risk of poverty or social exclusion in five EU Member States: Bulgaria (48.0 %), Romania (40.4 %), Greece (35.7 %), Latvia (35.1 %) and Hungary (33.5 %). At the other end of the scale, the lowest shares of persons being at risk of poverty or social exclusion were recorded in Sweden (16.4 %), Finland (16.0 %), the Netherlands (15.9 %) and the Czech Republic (14.6 %).

Housing is of course by far the most income consuming expenditure, followed largely by heating and food.

27.6% of children and 18.3% of pensioners in the EU now live in poverty. By contrast as Global Research mentioned in a report on Libya "In 1967 Colonel Gaddafi inherited one of the poorest nations in Africa; however, by the time he was assassinated, Gaddafi had turned Libya into Africa's wealthiest nation. Libya had the highest GDP per capita and life expectancy on the continent. Less people lived below the poverty line than in the Netherlands."


Get ready for a wallet biopsy: Negative interest rates, cashless societies and the $10 trillion bail-in

Remember those old ads showing a senior couple lounging on a warm beach, captioned "Let your money work for you"? Or the scene in Mary Poppins where young Michael is being advised to put his tuppence in the bank, so that it can compound into "all manner of private enterprise," including "bonds, chattels, dividends, shares, shipyards, amalgamations . . . ."?

That may still work if you're a Wall Street banker, but if you're an ordinary saver with your money in the bank, you may soon be paying the bank to hold your funds rather than the reverse.

Four European central banks - the European Central Bank, the Swiss National Bank, Sweden's Riksbank, and Denmark's Nationalbank - have now imposed negative interest rates on the reserves they hold for commercial banks; and discussion has turned to whether it's time to pass those costs on to consumers. The Bank of Japan and the Federal Reserve are still at ZIRP (Zero Interest Rate Policy), but several Fed officials have also begun calling for NIRP (negative rates).


UK MPs to interrogate Blair over relations with Gaddafi

UK Parliament: Blair has some explaining to do.
The UK parliament is set to question former Prime Minister Tony Blair on the nature of his relationship with Libya's ex-dictator Muammar Gaddafi. Blair will face questions next month about his role in orchestrating British foreign policy towards Libya when he appears before the Commons Foreign Affairs Committee. The British MPs say Blair is fully responsible for Britain's Libya policy.

"The policy construct inherited in 2011 was Blair's. He was the one who reset Libya - it was his signal achievement, he claimed, to disarm Colonel Gaddafi of his weapons, his WMDs," Committee chairman and Conservative MP Sir Crispin Blunt.

According to Blunt, Gaddafi was allowed to "buy himself out of the sanctions" even though he was "certainly a supporter of terrorists." Now the select committee is conducting an investigation into the controversial 2004 "deal in the desert" brokered by Blair, under which Libya relinquished attempts to acquire nuclear weapons in exchange for allowing Gaddafi to stay in power and reopening diplomatic ties between Libya and the West.

The deal, signed just one year after the US-led invasion of Iraq, was heavily criiticized by observers, who resented the Gaddafi regime's support of terrorism. Tony Blair was revealed to have spoken to Gaddafi several times on the telephone in 2011 in an attempt to secure a peace deal during the uprising.

Documents discovered in abandoned Libyan government offices following the 2011 revolution revealed Blair's government colluded with Gaddafi to kidnap and fly Libyan dissidents to Tripoli from the UK.

Comment: Can't believe they are doing the "abandoned government offices" document find ploy. What are the chances these are real or accurate? Libya was a progressive and stable democratic country before the West got its mitts on it. (What country do you think, out of a mere 40, is "certainly" supporting terrorists now?)


Paris evacuates underground Republique metro station due to security measures

The Republique underground railway station in Paris was evacuated Tuesday for security reasons, the French state transport operator RATP said. "The Republique station was evacuated on the police's request," the RATP said.

According to the transport operator, the traffic on several lines of Paris metro was restricted due to "security measures."

The Republique station is situated in close proximity to the Bataclan concert hall, one of the venues of the November 13 series of suicide bombings and shootings, which claimed the lives of at least 130 people and injured over 360.


Camp fire kills 18 African migrants, Algeria

African migrants suffer losses as camp goes up in flames.
At least 18 people have been killed and 43 others injured in a fire incident at a camp for African migrants in Algeria.

Emergency services said on Tuesday that the blaze began before dawn at the camp housing about 600 migrants in Ouargla, 800 kilometers (500 miles) southeast of Algeria's capital, Algiers.

According to the head of the Algerian Red Crescent, Saida Benhabiles, "a short circuit triggered the explosion of a heater and the fire." Authorities have launched an investigation into the incident.

Algeria has been a top North African destination for sub-Saharans seeking a better life.

Benhabiles said that since 2014, Algeria has managed to send back more than 4,000 migrants from Niger, adding that 400 more migrants were due to be returned to Niger from Ouargla.

According to Benhabiles, the migrants "are constantly on the move. One day, there could be 2,000 (migrants) and the next they are 200."

Post-It Note

Court rules US targeted-killing memorandums to remain secret

A US military MQ-9 Reaper drone flies by during a training mission at Creech Air Force Base in Indian Springs, Nevada, November 17, 2015
A federal court has withheld the release of memorandums that would shed light on the legal basis of the US targeted killings overseas.

In a 22-page ruling released Monday by the US 2nd Circuit Court of Appeals, a panel of three judges denied a joint effort by the New York Times and The American Civil Liberties Union (ACLU) to obtain the memos under the US Freedom of Information Act, according to Reuters. The ruling was issued on October 22, but was kept under temporary seal to provide time for appeal. The decision largely upheld the initial ruling by US District Judge Colleen McMahon in Manhattan who rejected the plea on October 31, 2014.

The Times and the ACLU were prompted to legally seek the documents after a 2011 US military drone strike in Yemen killed a US citizen named Anwar al-Awlaki. Al-Awlaki, a cleric who had reportedly joined the ranks of an al-Qaeda affiliate in the Arab country, was accused of directing several terrorist attacks.

The ACLU and the New York Times had initially sought the release of certain memos from the US Department of Justice's office of legal counsel on targeted killings but a district court order rejected their bid. ACLU attorneys and lawyers for the Times argued in their appeal request that the memos constituted "working law" that must be publicly released.

Jameel Jaffer, ACLU's deputy legal director, strongly opposed the ruling, saying that it allows three "crucial legal memos" to remain secret. "In a democracy, there should be no room for 'secret law,' and the courts should not play a role in perpetuating it," Jaffer said. "The government should not be using lethal force based on standards that are explained only vaguely and on facts that are never published or independently reviewed," he added.

Comment: Is there no end to the subterfuge that protects and insulates the actions of the US to keep it "consequence-free?" The truth is the US is in the remote-assassination business, without conscience or discrimination.


Strategy of Tension? Bomb explodes in central Athens outside business federation offices

© Alkis Konstantinidis / Reuters
Forensic experts search for evidence on a street where a bomb exploded outside the entrance of the Hellenic Business Federation offices in Athens, Greece, November 24, 2015.
A bomb has exploded outside the Federation of Greek Industries' offices in Athens. The blast, thought to be the work of domestic groups, damaged nearby buildings but did not cause any casualties.

The explosive device had been placed in a backpack near the entrance of the Hellenic Business Federation's offices. It was triggered by a timer set for around 3:30m local time.