Puppet MastersS

Bad Guys

When Governments Go Rogue

fear hand
© n/a
There are those today who would claim that the lifeblood of a nation is dependent upon the graces of its government. That government is the focal point of cultural growth, and that we as citizens should respect it as such. I would be more inclined to agree if the public did not so easily confuse the ideals of leadership with the actions of criminals. That is to say, regardless of what we wish our government to be, bureaucracies rarely, if ever, embody the spirit of the common man (a necessity for any system that purports to defend the citizenry). Instead, bureaucracies almost inevitably deteriorate into vehicles for the perpetuation of tyranny driven by the very worst of all stewards; elitist minorities with delusions of godhood.

Unfortunately, despite this fact, the masses often treat these industrious vermin and the plagues of society that they build with the same reverence as they would a sincere and honorable body politic.

Government is not nor has it ever been a foregone conclusion. Government is not concrete. It is not tangible. It is not the foundation of society. Instead, government is an abstraction; a fantastic dream of collectivist paternity in the face of individual hardship. Those who fear to wander the world on their own courage, strength, and merit, seek to elevate and empower "decision makers" to provide the comfort of limited liability. Through this process, governments are created out of thin air. All governmental authority is, thus, HANDED to those in positions of leadership. What makes one man a "king" and another man a "peasant"? Only the people of a country, and where they choose to place their personal control; in their own hands, or the hands of others.

To put it simply, there is no power over us but that which we give away, and no freedom lost, that cannot be regained.

Bad Guys

Iranian Quest for Casus Belli

israel/iran graphic
© iranbriefing.net
A string of attacks on Iran, from assassinations of key nuclear and military personnel to attempts to alienate it internationally, ring the bell. Is the West hunting for a pretext for a new war in the Middle East?

We believe that the integrity of embassies should always be honored; there is no justifying any country attacking any other country's embassy. Even if war breaks out, embassies are the last thread that should be severed.

That being said, and whilst it is unclear who agitated and mobilized Iranian protesters to attack the British Embassy in Tehran, the local police certainly came out in full force trying to restore order in what has become an all-too-common scene throughout the Middle East and North Africa.

First question: who benefits from this attack which the Western media are highlighting in red alert colors and harsh tones? British Foreign Secretary William Hague immediately ordered the closure of the Iranian Embassy in London, whilst US Secretary of State Hilary Clinton condemned this as an "affront on the British, but also on the International Community," on whose behalf (i.e., the "international community's") the US and UK somehow feel they are empowered to speak.


Turns Out the 'Government Sachs' Conspiracy Theorists Were Right All Along

© n/aFormer Secretary of the U.S. Treasury Hank Paulson
In a shocking article published in Reuters, Felix Salmon confirmed what the so-called conspiracy theorists have said all along: former Secretary of the U.S. Treasury Hank Paulson was giving insider tips to his cronies at Goldman Sachs and other Wall Street titans which directly benefited them.

The article is entitled, "Hank Paulson's Inside Jobs," emphasizing the fact that this wasn't some one-off lapse of ethics on Paulson's part, but instead a disturbingly regular practice.

For those who are unaware, Paulson was the CEO and chairman at Goldman Sachs from 1999-2006 and he clearly provided them with actionable information that epitomizes the plague upon our economy, and the greater global economic system, that is crony capitalism.

However, this isn't quite a brand new revelation given the fact that in October of 2009 Andrew Ross Sorkin exposed that Paulson met with the entire Goldman Sachs board in a hotel suite in Moscow at the end of June 2008.


Arab League approves sanctions on Syria

Arab League meeting
© Assmaa Waguih/ReutersArab League Secretary General Nabil al-Araby (L) and Qatari Foreign Minister Hamad bin Jassim (C) attend the Arab Foreign Ministers' emergency meeting about Syria, at the Arab League Headquarters in Cairo November 12, 2011.
The Arab League overwhelmingly approved sanctions Sunday against Syria to pressure Damascus to end its deadly eight-month crackdown on dissent, an unprecedented move by the League against an Arab state.

Before the vote, Damascus slammed the vote as a betrayal of Arab solidarity. Besides punishing an already ailing economy, the sanctions are a huge blow for a Syrian regime that considers itself a powerhouse of Arab nationalism.

At a news conference in Cairo, Qatari Foreign Minister Hamad bin Jassim said 19 of the League's 22 member nations approved the sanctions, which include cutting off transactions with the Syrian central bank and halting Arab government funding for projects in Syria. Iraq and Lebanon abstained.

"We aim to avoid any suffering for the Syrian people," Mr. bin Jassim said.


Obama Lawyers: Citizens Targeted if at War With US

obama,big brother
© realclearliberty

Washington - U.S. citizens are legitimate military targets when they take up arms with al-Qaida, top national security lawyers in the Obama administration said Thursday.

The lawyers were asked at a national security conference about the CIA killing of Anwar al-Awlaki, a U.S. citizen and leading al-Qaida figure. He died in a Sept. 30 U.S. drone strike in the mountains of Yemen.

The government lawyers, CIA counsel Stephen Preston and Pentagon counsel Jeh Johnson, did not directly address the al-Awlaki case. But they said U.S. citizens do not have immunity when they are at war with the United States.

Johnson said only the executive branch, not the courts, is equipped to make military battlefield targeting decisions about who qualifies as an enemy.


'Senate bill to turn US into battlefield', 'Occupy' Movement the Target?

US Senate
© file
American civil rights activists have censured the country's senate for seeking to allow the military to imprison American citizens without bringing a charge against them.

American rights activists have slammed the US Senate for gearing up to vote on a bill on Monday that would define the whole of the United States as a 'battlefield' and allow the military to arrest American citizens in their own back yard without charge or trial.

The reactions comes after the American Civil Liberties Union (ACLU) said last week that "the senate is going to vote on whether Congress will give this president-and every future president - the power to order the military to pick up and imprison without charge or trial civilians anywhere in the world. The power is so broad that even US citizens could be swept up by the military and the military could be used far from any battlefield, even within the United States itself."


Global Central Banks Announce Co-ordinated Intervention

The European Central Bank has taken action with five other central banks to boost liquidity to the banking system.

The ECB announced today it was acting with the Bank of Canada, the Bank of England, the Bank of Japan, the US Federal Reserve and the Swiss National Bank to lower the cost of US dollar swaps by 50 basis points.

The central banks also agreed to set up liquidity swap arrangements to provide liquidity in each jurisdiction in its national currency.

The ECB said in a statement: "The purpose of these actions is to ease strains in financial markets and thereby mitigate the effects of such strains on the supply of credit to households and businesess and so help foster economic activity."

The move is designed to head off a liquidity crunch in the banking sector as banks are increasingly wary of lending to each other.

Bad Guys

The European Central Bank Fiddles While Rome Burns

"To some people, the European Central Bank seems like a fire department that is letting the house burn down to teach the children not to play with matches."
So wrote Jack Ewing in the New York Times last week. He went on:
"The E.C.B. has a fire hose - its ability to print money. But the bank is refusing to train it on the euro zone's debt crisis.

"The flames climbed higher Friday after the Italian Treasury had to pay an interest rate of 6.5 percent on a new issue of six-month bills . . . the highest interest rate Italy has had to pay to sell such debt since August 1997 . . . .

"But there is no sign the E.C.B. plans a major response, like buying large quantities of the country's bonds to bring down its borrowing costs."
Why not? According to the November 28th Wall Street Journal, "The ECB has long worried that buying government bonds in big enough amounts to bring down countries' borrowing costs would make it easier for national politicians to delay the budget austerity and economic overhauls that are needed."

Bad Guys

The Other One Percent: Corporate Psychopaths and the Global Financial Crisis

Wolf in Sheep Clothing
© Jesse's Café Américain

Anyone who has ever worked in a large corporation has seen the empty suits that seem to inexplicably rise to positions of power. They talk a great game, possessing extraordinary verbal acuity, and often with an amazing ability to rise quickly without significant accomplishments to positions of great personal power, and often using it ruthlessly once it is achieved.

Their ruthless obsession with power and its visible rewards rises above the general level of narcissism and sycophancy that often plagues large organizations, especially those with an established franchise where performance is not as much of an issue as collecting their rents.

And anyone who has been on the inside of the national political process knows this is certainly nothing exclusive to the corporate world.

Here is a paper recently published in the Journal of Business Ethics that hypothesizes along these lines. It is only a preliminary paper, lacking in full scholarship and a cycle of peer review.

But it raises a very important subject. Organizational theories such as the efficient markets hypothesis that assume rational behaviour on the part of market participants tends to fall apart in the presence of the irrational and selfish short term focus of a significant minority of people who seek power, much less the top one percent of the psychologically ruthless.


US: New Evidence Shows Sirhan Sirhan May Be Innocent

Lawyers say new forensic evidence shows Sirhan Sirhan is innocent.

Comment: Readers might be interested in reading the following series on RFK's assassination by Allen Branson:

The Assassination of Robert Kennedy, Part 1

The Assassination of Robert Kennedy, Part 2 - Thane Eugene Cesar

The Assassination of Robert Kennedy, Part 3 - The woman in the polka dot dress

The Assassination of Robert Kennedy, Part 4 - Deeper Down the Rabbit Hole

The Assassination of Robert Kennedy, Part 5 - Sirhan Sirhan