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Sat, 02 Dec 2023
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Africa: ANC Julius Malema's Shoot the Boer Ruled 'Hate Speech'

© BBC News
The BBC's Karen Allen says Julius Malema "seems like a broken man"
South Africa's high court has ruled that the anti-apartheid song Shoot the Boer is hate speech and banned the ruling ANC from singing it.

Afrikaans interest group Afriforum had complained about ANC youth league leader Julius Malema singing the song, which refers to white farmers.

Mr Malema and other ANC leaders had argued that the song was a celebration of the fight against minority rule.

They said the words were not meant to be taken literally.

The high court upheld a ruling by a lower court and ordered Mr Malema to pay legal costs.

"Those words are derogatory, dehumanising," said judge Collin Lamont, adding that in post-apartheid South Africa, all citizens are called to treat each other equally.

He urged the ANC to find new customs which did not bring disunity.


UK: Cameron Rejects Russia Security Call Over Litvinenko

David Cameron has rejected a call by Russia to restore links with its security services, which were frozen after the Alexander Litvinenko murder.

© Getty Images
David Cameron: "The fact is the two governments don't agree on Litvinenko"
Relations between the UK and Russia have been strained since the Russian dissident's death in London in 2006.

The PM said in Moscow the UK would continue to challenge Russia's refusal to extradite the prime suspect.

But he said his one-day trip - the first talks there by a UK leader since 2005 - had improved trade links.

During a news conference with Russian President Dmitry Medvedev, he said they had agreed to increase co-operation in areas including commerce, technology and international issues.


Saudi Official: US Veto for Palestinian State Will Cost Saudi Alliance


The United States would lose Saudi Arabia as an ally if it blocks the Palestinian bid for statehood at the United Nations this month, according to a New York Times piece written by a senior Saudi official.

"Saudi Arabia would no longer be able to cooperate with America in the same way it historically has," Prince Turki al-Faisal, the former Saudi intelligence chief, wrote in an opinion piece that was officially sanctioned by the monarchy. "Saudi leaders would be forced by domestic and regional pressures to adopt a far more independent and assertive foreign policy."

The Obama administration has been firm in denouncing Palestinian attempts to generate support for its bid for statehood and has promised to veto the resolution at the Security Council this month.

Bad Guys

911 and the Mainstream Media, or There Are Such Things as Stupid Questions!

Bush 911 School
© Unknown
'There is no such thing as a stupid question.' It's a phrase I've heard since Kindergarten, and for good reason. Often in a state of perfectly understandable ignorance, little tykes need to ask questions, and they need to feel comfortable doing so. Knowing that their questions will not be dismissed by their teachers and parents encourages children to begin the process of asking, seeking, and developing the ability to actually think and not just regurgitate mindless bits of nonsense. Of course, the answers to these sincere questions may seem self-evident to adults, but ridiculing children for asking them is pretty nasty. It kills curiosity and stunts learning. But even then, I think this maxim is in desperate need of revision. There's no such thing as a stupid question, but only if it is asked sincerely. There are definitely such things as stupid questions.

The power of a stupid question lies in its ability to promote rigid thinking, and to prevent the asking and answering of truly sincere questions. And unfortunately, like a bad cold or a catchy tune written for someone half our age, stupid questions are highly contagious. In fact, in our highly ponerized society, such questions are epidemic, particularly when it comes to the uncomfortable truths about what really happened on 9/11.

Bad Guys

Secret Government Experiments Come to Light

Secret Gov Experiments
© Hulton-Deutsch Collection/CORBIS
The government may not want you to know that it set off nuclear bombs willy-nilly in the atmosphere or tested LSD on unwitting subjects, but at least the Science Channel does!

In case you believed that elaborate government conspiracies were merely the driving force behind X-Files episodes, the Science Channel is setting the record straight. As a compendium to their latest show, Dark Matters, which explores the darker side of science, the Science Channel has published introductions and full transcripts from government hearings on some of the most unbelievable -- yet true -- conspiracies, including the highly-controversial MKULTRA project.

According to the 1977 transcript of the hearing before Congress, MKULTRA projects on behavioral modification, drug acquisition and testing took place over the better part of a decade, from 1953 through 1964.

Perhaps best known for administering the psychedelic drug LSD to unwitting participants, MKULTRA actually was composed of 149 (known) projects, across 86 universities and institutions, that dabbled in everything from harmless hypnosis to horrific human testing.

No one was spared. The CIA was an equal-opportunity abuser. The report details it as an "extensive testing and experimentation" program that included covert drug tests on unwitting citizens "at all social levels, high and low, native Americans and foreign."


US 2010 Poverty Rate Highest Since 1993

Homeless Man
© Wrangler, Shutterstock
A homeless man sits on the street.

New Census data suggests that even after the U.S. officially exited the recession in June 2009, the population continued to feel the echoes of economic trouble.

In 2010, the poverty rate increased to 15.1 percent, up from 14.3 percent from the previous year, the U.S. Census Bureau reported today (Sept. 13). That's the highest rate since 1993, which also saw a 15.1-percent poverty rate.

The poverty rate fell each year between 1993 and 2000, hitting a low of 11.3 percent in 2000. Between 2007 and 2010, the agency reported, the poverty rate has gone up 2.6 percentage points.

Social scientists have found a multitude of effects from the recession that started in December 2007 and continued through 2009. A May 2011 survey about personal finance found that more than a third of Americans felt their financial situation was getting worse, not better. Even pets are suffering, according to an April 2011 survey of veterinarians, which reported an increase in fleas, ticks, heartworm and other preventable conditions as pet owners try to save money by skipping the vet.

Eye 2

The Real Reasons Nation States Institute "False-Flag" Attacks and the Context of Principles by which they Occur

Throughout history the existence and reasons for the use of "false-flag" attacks have been understood only by insiders within the highest levels of government, the military and intel. Recently, after the 9/11 attacks the Internet (World Wide Web, WWW) has allowed citizen researchers to connect the dots and dig out and share information which previously would never have been so easily discovered and so widely available.
goering big lie 9/11
© Unknown
"False-flag" attacks provide a justification for a country's leaders to use their military or special forces to attack, or enter into a war or declare war on an enemy or enemy construct, thereby providing a convenient pretext for a war which would not otherwise be acceptable to the populace of a nation-state. And some enemies are imaginary only such as the "war on drugs" where the government itself brings in and distributes the illegal drugs; or take the current "war on terror" where the US government has used its own disguised forces to pose as terrorists and at other times using "cutouts" they train, finance and direct to commit terrorist acts, sometimes with these cutout being mind kontrolled black operatives.

These self-inflicted, inside job terrorist attacks are then typically followed by the government then labeling any citizen that dissents as a "potential terrorist", and then proceeding to pass highly restrictive laws that shred the US Constitution, take away Habeas Corpus, prescribe and allow torture even of young children including the crushing of their testicles in young male children if the state deems this is necessary to gain useful intel. The US Government actually obtained opinions from its own legal counsel during the Bush 2 administration that these measures were legal and justified.

Bad Guys

Austerity! Billionaire private equity mogul says "we" should sacrifice

© AP/Charles Dharapak/World Economic Forum
President Obama and Steve Schwarzman
Billionaire private equity mogul Steve Schwarzman, a living symbol of post-industrial late capitalism's gaudy depravity, wrote an opinion column about politics and the government, and the Financial Times published this column. It's a bad, dumb column, but that is to be expected, because what the hell does billionaire private equity mogul Steve Schwarzman know about politics?

Again: Very wealthy people are not smarter than regular people, and wealth or financial acumen does not magically create expertise on other issues. Steve Schwarzman knows as much about politics and economics as any schmo who reads the Wall Street Journal editorial page, which is to say he believes a bunch of convenient lies. If Schwarzman wrote a column on what the Boston Red Sox need to do to reverse their slump would Sports Illustrated publish it, or would he have to put it on his blog like a regular self-appointed sports expert?

Instead, this is Steve Schwarzman's explanation for what caused America's slump, and how to reverse it.

Wall Street

The bait and switch of school "reform": Behind the new corporate agenda for education, an old anti-union bias


Should this man be in charge of the education system?
In recent weeks the debate over the future of public education in America has flared up again, this time with the publication of the new book Class Warfare, by Steven Brill, the founder of American Lawyer magazine. Brill's advocacy of "reform" has sparked different strands of criticism from the New York Times, New York University's Diane Ravitch and the Nation's Dana Goldstein.

But behind the high-profile back and forth over specific policies and prescriptions lies a story that has less to do with ideas than with money, less to do with facts than with an ideological subtext that has been quietly baked into the very terms of the national education discussion.

Like most education reporters today, Brill frames the issue in simplistic, binary terms. On one side are self-interested teachers unions who supposedly oppose fundamental changes to schools, not because they care about students, but because they fear for their own job security and wages, irrespective of kids. In this mythology, they are pitted against an alliance of extraordinarily wealthy corporate elites who, unlike the allegedly greedy unions, are said to act solely out of the goodness of their hearts. We are told that this "reform" alliance of everyone from Rupert Murdoch to the Walton family to leading hedge funders spends huge amounts of money pushing for radical changes to public schools because they suddenly decided that they care about destitute children, and now want to see all kids get a great education.


10 years on, mainstream glimpse of truth about 9/11: The Guardian gives 9/11 truth a fair hearing

© The Guardian
On the day of September 11, Charlie Skelton attends a symposium of critical thinkers in New York

The heavy syllables of the victims' names boomed out along the streets around Ground Zero. The public were patted down, then allowed up a cramped side road to peer at a distant video screen of the memorial. They filmed the video screen on their mobile phones, filmed each other filming, and film crews filmed them filming.

It was hardly fertile ground for grief, you'd think. And yet, the weird detachment of the moment was severed by the chanting of the names and the brief tributes of the readers. It was the daughter who said her father's friends tell her that she reminds them of him that did it for me. That, and the list of victims called Jones. Jones after Jones after Jones. Too many Joneses. I took my sniffles back up the street to Starbucks.

And from Starbucks, I went down the rabbit hole. I found myself at a conference on Walker Street called 'How The World Changed After 9/11'. It was packed, but I managed to slide in at the back, to hear a guy called Webster Tarpley chant his own list of names. The names of the 46 military exercises and hijack drills (called things like 'Vigilant Guardian') that were actually taking place on the morning of September 11. "The greatest density of drills in US military history," Tarpley said.

Fake radar blips, dummy hijacks, dummy attacks, fighter jets sent off to Turkey, the skies left unprotected, with the FBI's top anti-terror experts stuck on a training exercise in California. The drills, said Tarpley, were important, because not only did they weaken and confuse US air defence, but there was also a military drill for each major component of the 9/11 attacks. The drills were cover, and the dummy threats were made real.

September 11, he argues, was a coup carried out by a rogue network within the US military and government. A cabal of fascists, working with (and for) a banking oligarchy, "the old boys of Wall Street".

Comment: That is quite rare commentary on the UK Guardian News Blog of events questioning the official 9/11 account. Notice however, that mention of Israel has been studiously avoided. This is understandable however - the piece would never have been published otherwise.