Puppet MastersS


Footprints

Iran plans to sell oil via private group, evade ban

(Reuters) - Iran has reached agreements with European refiners to sell some of its oil through a private consortium, an official said on Saturday, a move designed to circumvent sanctions intended to put pressure on Tehran to halt its disputed nuclear program.

The head of the oil products exporters' union said the agreement between the exporters' union, Iran's central bank, and the oil ministry would get round a European Union ban on shipping insurance for tankers carrying Iranian oil, though he gave few details and did not name the refiners involved.

The EU put into effect a ban on the importation, purchase, or shipping of Iranian oil on July 1, and the Islamic Republic will see its oil exports fall by more than 50 percent this month from last year's regular levels, costing it billions of dollars a month in revenue.

"There have been discussions with European refiners, and a final agreement has even been reached," said Hassan Khosrojerdi, the exporters' union head, according to Iran's Mehr News Agency.

"In accordance with the agreement, it is planned that 20 percent of Iran's oil exports will go through this private consortium."

Chess

Russian official urges Moscow to deliver S-300 air defense missiles to Iran

Image
© Unknown
Chairman of the Russian Defense Ministry's Public Council Igor Korotchenko has called on Moscow to fulfill its contractual obligations to Tehran and deliver S-300 air defense missiles to Iran, MNA reported.

Bad Guys

What Did Reagan Know About the Argentine Dictatorship's Baby Thefts?

Reagan
Ronald Reagan, supporter of fascists
The Reagan administration was aware of a scheme to murder leftist mothers in Argentina and give their infants to military personnel often complicit in the killings.

An Argentine court has convicted two of the nation's former right-wing dictators, Jorge Rafael Videla and Reynaldo Bignone, in a scheme to murder leftist mothers and give their infants to military personnel often complicit in the killings, a shocking process known to the Reagan administration even as it worked closely with the bloody regime.

Testimony at the trial included a videoconference from Washington with Elliott Abrams, then-Secretary of State for Latin American Affairs, who said he urged Bignone to reveal the babies' identities as Argentina began a transition to democracy in 1983.

Abrams said the Reagan administration "knew that it wasn't just one or two children," indicating that U.S. officials believed there was a high-level "plan because there were many people who were being murdered or jailed." Estimates of the Argentines murdered in the so-called Dirty War range from 13,000 to about 30,000, with many victims "disappeared," buried in mass graves or dumped from planes over the Atlantic.

Attention

Executive Tyranny

General Obama
© FactsNotFantasy Blogspot
The use of Executive Orders (EO) goes back to the first President, George Washington. Every chief executive has issued them since then. Some have been historic, but the latest Executive Orders of President Obama are downright scary.

The Executive Order signed on June 25 is titled "Russian Highly Enriched Uranium" and offers as its justification the fact that "the accumulation of a large volume of weapons-usable fissile material in the territory of the Russian Federal continues to constitute an unusual and extraordinary threat to the national security and foreign policy of the United States, and hereby declare a national emergency to deal with that threat."

A national emergency? Over Russian nuclear material?

Are we still in the Cold War?

Are we facing another Cuban Missile Crisis?

Are the Russians getting ready to launch a nuclear attack on the U.S.?

Are the Russians provocateurs? Yes, but what else is new?

The justification for this Executive Order is absurd.

The world is filled with nuclear weapons held by both our allies and our presumed enemies.

Having proclaimed a national emergency, why hasn't Obama gone on television to inform Americans? Because, like everything else he does, it is done with stealth.

Footprints

French President Hollande vows new Armenia 'genocide law'

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© AFPArmenians say up to 1.5m people were killed by the Ottoman Turks in 1915-16.
French President Francois Hollande has said he plans a new law to punish denial that the 1915-16 killing of Armenians was genocide. A previous law approved by the French parliament was struck down in February by the Constitutional Council, which said it infringed freedom of speech.

Turkey rejects the term "genocide" for the deaths of Armenians during their deportation by the Ottoman Empire. The issue has strained Franco-Turkish relations in recent years.

Mr Hollande's predecessor Nicolas Sarkozy had also ordered his government to draft a new law after the old one was struck down. "Francois Hollande has again expressed his willingness to propose a bill designed to curb the denial of the Armenian genocide, as he had said during his campaign and even before," the Coordinating Council of Armenian Organisations of France (CCAF) told the AFP news agency.

A delegation from the CCAF will meet Mr Hollande before the end of the month to discuss what form the new law would take, French media reports say.

On Thursday, remarks by French Foreign Minister Laurent Fabius during a meeting with his Turkish counterpart appeared to indicate that the Constitutional Council's ruling would make it impossible to take up the issue again. However, Mr Hollande's office said on Saturday: "The president expressed his commitments during the campaign. He will keep them.

"We must find a path, a road that allows for a text that is consistent with the constitution."

Footprints

Numbers Tell of Failure in Drug War

When policy makers in Washington worry about Mexico these days, they think in terms of a handful of numbers: Mexico's 19,500 hectares devoted to poppy cultivation for heroin; its 17,500 hectares growing cannabis; the 95 percent of American cocaine imports brought by Mexican cartels through Mexico and Central America.

They are thinking about the wrong numbers. If there is one number that embodies the seemingly intractable challenge imposed by the illegal drug trade on the relationship between the United States and Mexico, it is $177.26. That is the retail price, according to Drug Enforcement Administration data, of one gram of pure cocaine from your typical local pusher. That is 74 percent cheaper than it was 30 years ago.

This number contains pretty much all you need to evaluate the Mexican and American governments' "war" to eradicate illegal drugs from the streets of the United States. They would do well to heed its message. What it says is that the struggle on which they have spent billions of dollars and lost tens of thousands of lives over the last four decades has failed.

There is little reason to expect the elections this year will do much to address the challenges to the bilateral relationship. Enrique Peña Nieto, elected president of Mexico on Sunday, is a scion of Mexico's Institutional Revolutionary Party, which was tainted by authoritarianism, corruption and fraud during seven decades in power, before it was booted out by voters 12 years ago. In the United States, neither President Obama nor his Republican challenger, Mitt Romney, has shown much interest in the nation's southern neighbor.

Propaganda

Propaganda Alert! Al-Qaeda terror suspect caught at Olympic Park

London Overland Train
© Real World ImageThe 'alleged' 'suspect' is guilty of travelling by train to seek legal advice at the request of his lawyers. (The train travels near to an Olympic venue)
The alleged al-Qaeda militant was caught crossing through the Olympic Park five times, breaking a ban imposed by the Home Secretary, The Sunday Telegraph has learned.

The 24 year-old has previously tried to get to Afghanistan, allegedly for terrorist training, and is suspected of fighting for the Somali Islamist group al Shabaab, which has been responsible for thousands of deaths, including those of Western aid workers. He is accused of trying to recruit other Britons to its cause.

A Home Office lawyer warned after his discovery in the Olympic area that the man - known as CF - wanted to "re-engage in terrorism-related activities, either in the UK or Somalia" and is "determined to continue to adhere to his Islamist extremist agenda".

His detention is the most serious security alert yet to hit the Olympic Park.

It is disclosed today after a week which saw 14 terror-related arrests across Britain, including a white Muslim convert detained over an alleged plan to carry out a major terrorist attack.

Comment: The headline 'Man travels on same rail route a few times over a couple of months at request of Lawyer" doesn't quite have the same attention-grabbing detail to it. This is in essense all he has actually done and the article is pure nonsense. Just look at how many times the words 'suspect', 'alleged', 'was possibly', 'claims', 'says' is framed around complete fiction. All in all a wonderfully written piece of propaganada with a highlight of presenting the new crime of the century: 'acting suspiciously in a dinghy'!


Bomb

6 NATO troops killed in Afghanistan

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© UnknownResults of an IED. 2 anti tank mines stacked.
Six NATO troops were killed in a bomb attack in eastern Afghanistan on Sunday, the military alliance said, on a day where a total of 29 people died from roadside bombs and insurgent attacks.

The identities and nationalities of the NATO victims were withheld and details of the attack were not immediately available.

The deaths take the number of NATO troops killed in the last two days to eight, one of the deadliest periods of violence for foreign troops in weeks.

In addition to the six NATO deaths, bombs and attacks killed 16 Afghan civilians, five policemen and two members of the U.S.-led coalition in southern Afghanistan, Afghan and NATO authorities said.

Comment: The closing line seems misleading. Was Afghanistan a hyper-chaotic nation before the United States and other Western Governments began destroying it? War is Chaos and Terror.


Cell Phone

Phone Bill Follies and Obamacare

Phone
© codinghorror.com
We have a land line phone in our condo. We have it because we rent it out during the summer and thought we should have it in case renters need it. We contracted with Verizon 8 years ago for the minimal local service. The charge was $18 per month.

I just paid the monthly bill today and it was $27.08. That's a 50% increase in 8 years. I don't have better service. I don't have more bells and whistles. What could possibly have resulted in this increase?

My actual charge from Verizon for the service is only $16.45. Here is the detail for the rest of the bill:

Federal Subscriber Line Charge - $6.29

Federal Universal Service Fee - $1.09

NJ Sales Tax - $1.67

911 System/Emerg Resp Fee - $0.90

Federal Excise Tax - $0.68

A full 39% of my bill is for government taxes and fees. I don't know if Verizon is calling things Federal to mislead people, or whether these surcharges are required by the Federal government. Who knows? I'm either being screwed by a Mega-Government or a Mega-Corporation.

Bad Guys

David Seaton: Ayn Rand's India holds up a mirror for the American right to see itself

"Evil requires the sanction of the victim." Ayn Rand"
Ayn Rand
© unknownAyn Rand (R)
The other day in my perusings I stumbled upon this troubling jewel:
Not only do Indians perform more Google searches for (Ayn) Rand than citizens of any country in the world except the United States, but Penguin Books India has sold an impressive number of copies -- as many as 50,000 of Atlas Shrugged and The Fountainhead each since 2005, a number comparable to sales there by global best-seller John Grisham. And that's not counting the ubiquitous pirated copies of her works that are hawked at rickety street stalls, sidewalk piles, and bus stations -- an honor that Rand, a fierce defender of intellectual property rights, probably would not have appreciated. Foreign Policy
To put this information into some perspective I would ask you to read a paragraph from Wikipedia:
The World Bank estimates that 456 million Indians (42% of the total Indian population) now live under the global poverty line of $1.25 per day (PPP). This means that a third of the global poor now reside in India.(...) India has a higher rate of malnutrition among children under the age of three (46% in year 2007) than any other country in the world.
Now into that context, to see what Indians are so eagerly googling, let's mix in the following sayings of Ayn Rand, which though few, hopefully give the full flavor of her "Objectivist" philosophy: