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Father of Toulouse Killer Mohamed Merah Sues for Murder

Mohamed Merah
© Agence France-Presse
The father of Mohamed Merah, the Islamist gunman killed by French police after shooting seven people, has formally sued over his son's "murder".

A lawyer for Mohamed Benalel Merah, who lives in Algeria, said the suit was against those "who gave the orders at the top of the police".

The gunman was shot dead at his flat in Toulouse after a 32-hour siege.

He had confessed to killing seven people, including Jewish children, in a rampage which shocked France.

Mohamed Benalel Merah said soon after his son's death on 22 March he intended to sue the French government.

Comment: Merah was not a murderer but one of the several people that was used by psychopaths in power for political purposes. For the real story of what happened surrounding the Merah case and why the elder Merah has every right to be outraged, see these articles:
Sott Focus: Toulouse Attacks: The Official Story of the Death of Mohamed Merah is a Lie
Sott Focus: Sarkozy The American's 9/11: Mohamed Merah: 'Liquidated' French Intelligence Asset
Sarkozy's Coup d'État: Mohamed Merah was French Intelligence Asset


Bad Guys

Climate Skeptic Instructor Fired from Oregon State University

Gordon Fulks sends this summary of the situation and asks that it be distributed. I'm happy to oblige. For some background on Dr. Drapela's skeptical views, this slideshow "Global Warming Cracked Open" might give some insight into OSU's booting him out. - Anthony

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Al Gore breaths global warming
© unknown
From Gordon Fulks:

Hello Everyone,

In theory at least Oregon State University (OSU) seems to be a bastion of academic freedom, diversity, and tolerance. A wide range of ideas are openly discussed. The most viable rise to the top and the least viable fade away. But it is all a fairy tale, because OSU operates under a politically correct regimen that dictates what is acceptable to say and what is not. Transgressors who dare to be different are eventually weeded out so that the campus maintains its ideological purity.

OSU is not yet as swift or efficient as the Soviet system when Joseph Stalin was trying to quash dissent among biologists who refused to go along with Trofim Lysenko. If warnings to compromise their integrity were not followed, Stalin simply had biologists shot. That quickly thinned the ranks of all biologists and persuaded the remaining ones to comply with Stalin's wishes. Of course, it also destroyed Soviet biology, because Lysenko was pedaling nonsense. And Russian biology has never recovered.

We learned over the weekend that chemist Nickolas Drapela, PhD has been summarily fired from his position as a "Senior Instructor" in the Department of Chemistry. The department chairman Richard Carter told him that he was fired but would not provide any reason. Subsequent attempts to extract a reason from the OSU administration have been stonewalled. Drapela appears to have been highly competent and well-liked by his students. Some have even taken up the fight to have him reinstated.

What could possibly have provoked the OSU administration to take precipitous action against one of their academics who has been on their staff for ten years, just bought a house in Corvallis, and has four young children (one with severe medical problems)?

Dr. Drapela is an outspoken critic of the theory of Anthropogenic Global Warming, the official religion of the State of Oregon, the Oregon Democratic Party, and Governor John Kitzhaber.

Whistle

Monsanto's Deep Roots in Washington

Image
© thecorporation.com
If you've ever wondered how Monsanto - a company that admits it wants to own the world's food supply through its patented genetically engineered seeds - gets away with not having to label its products, all you have to do is follow the trail of money leading from their coffers into the pockets and campaign funds of well-placed politicians and regulators.

According to OpenSecrets.orgi, Monsanto basically lives at the doorsteps of legislators in Washington, where it spent $5.3 million last year lobbying the nation's lawmakers, and has already spent $1.4 million in the first three months of this year. Needless to say, they can afford it. According to OpenSecrets.org, Monsanto had an annual revenue of $11.8 billion last year, so a $5.3 million lobbying investment is far less than one percent of one percent of their revenues.

The influence they're trying to buy doesn't stop in Congress, though. Monsanto's legislative agenda also includes the U.S. Department of Agriculture (USDA), the Food and Drug Administration (FDA), and the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA); all of which have a say in whether or not you get to know whether the food you're eating has been genetically engineered.

Bad Guys

20 Years Later, The Biotech Brigade Marches On....

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© panna.org
Twenty years ago this week Dan Quayle went against scientific consensus to publicly proclaim that genetically engineered foods were "substantially equivalent" to non-GE food, and that he would therefore work to ensure that GE food would not be "hampered by unnecessary regulation." In the pivotal 1992 FDA ruling that Quayle then proudly claimed as part of his "regulatory relief" agenda, the flood gates for GE were opened.


Comment: The following article gives a clear definition of the words 'substantially equivalent': The GMO Report: Substantial Equivalence - anything but equivalent or substantial


We've been living in that wake ever since because a small clutch of biotech "true believers," ideologically anti-regulatory government officials and industry lobbyists have kept that flood gate open against great odds.

Agricultural biotech has consistently failed to deliver on promises, inspired a global backlash and remained suspect to consumers for twenty years. Yet our regulatory agencies play a game of hot potato, each devising more creative ways than the last to avoid taking a hard look at the fact that GE corn, soy and now alfalfa are the backbone of the industrial food system, and cover hundreds of thousands of acres of countryside without having passed any meaningful scientific scrutiny as to their safety (in part because scientists can't get their hands on GE crops to study them). USDA actually has as a declared tenet of their strategic plan [PDF], the global proliferation of GE crop technologies.

Green Light

The Police State Cometh (Are You the Subject of Government Spying?)

The police State Cometh is Here: 10 Signs That The Highways Of America Are Being Transformed Into A High Tech Prison Grid
Image
© unknown
Once upon a time, the open highways of America were one of our greatest symbols of liberty and freedom. Anyone could hop in a car and set off for a new adventure at any time and even our music encouraged us to "get our kicks on route 66". But today everything has changed. Now the highways of America are being steadily transformed into a high tech prison grid. All over the country, thousands upon thousands of surveillance cameras watch our highways and automated license plate readers are actually being used to track vehicle movements in some of our largest cities. Many state and local governments have come to view our highways as money machines and our control freak politicians have established a vast network of toll booths, red light cameras and speed traps to keep cash endlessly pouring in. If all of that wasn't enough, TSA "VIPR teams" are now hitting the interstates and conducting thousands of "unannounced security screenings" each year. Driving on the highways of America used to be a great joy, but now "Big Brother" is rapidly sucking all of the fun out of it. Eventually, it may get to the point where Americans simply dread having to go out on the highway. The following are 10 signs that the highways of America are being transformed into a high tech prison grid....

Eye 1

Words the Government Uses To Spy on You

Image
© unknown
A short burst of hail and sleet falling from a cloud over San Diego has caused delays on the subway. Bad organization through social media means that my team exercise drill has been cancelled. It's actually a relief as I've been feeling sick after eating some pork that had a worm in it.

These three sentences may sound odd for a number of reasons. First, there is no subway in San Diego. Second, even if there were one, the chances of its being affected by hail or sleet would be minuscule. (I'm not even going to go into why I might be eating pork with worms in it.) However, the main reason these few sentences are peculiar is that they contain 17 (seventeen!) keywords that will be picked up by government analysts monitoring social media and online news outlets. Believe it or not, what they're trolling for are signs of terrorist attacks and other threats to the U.S.

Bad Guys

How the Wisconsin Uprising Got Hijacked

Scott Walker
© Morry Gash/AP
Wisconsin Gov. Scott Walker at his June 5 victory party in Waukesha, Wis.

The post-mortems and prognostications began just minutes after Wisconsin Governor Scott Walker's recall election victory, and they're still flooding in. His win, goes one talking point, bodes well for Mitt Romney's efforts to flip Wisconsin red for the first time since 1984. Bummed-out Democrats, suggests another, spell trouble for President Obama in November. Obama's got no reason to worry, claims a third, because 17% of the Walker recall vote came from Wisconsinites who claim they will go the president's way in the fall.

Such futurology is now the essence of what we think of as political coverage (along with the flood of opinion polls that make it seem like realism). Yet such crystal-ball-reading is a fool's errand. Gubernatorial recalls in particular are utter rarities, outliers brought into being by a unique set of local circumstances.

You can bet on one thing, though: Walker's win has emboldened the Republican Party. And here's another likelihood: Republican governors and state legislators nationwide will emulate Walker's "divide and conquer" agenda -- his own words -- in the months and possibly years ahead. Tim Phillips, president of the conservative group Americans for Prosperity, said as much in Wisconsin on the eve of the recall: "Today every other governor in the country and every state legislator in the country is watching Wisconsin. Because the Wisconsin approach to changing and making state government better is the new model for the country."

Attention

The Economic Collapse Is Not A Single Event

Collapse
© The Economic Collapse
Many people hype "the coming economic collapse" as if it is some kind of big summer Hollywood blockbuster. Many people out there write about it as if it is something that will happen in a single day or over a few weeks and that it will suddenly change how the entire world functions. But that is not how the financial world works. The financial world is like a game of chess - very slow and methodical. Yes, there are times when things happen very quickly (like back in 2008), but even that crisis played out over a number of months. Sadly, most Americans are not used to thinking in terms of months or years.

These days, most Americans have the attention span of a goldfish and most Americans have been trained to expect instant gratification. They are simply not accustomed to being patient and to wait for things. Well, despite what you may have read, the economic collapse is not going to be a single event. It is going to play out over quite a few years. In some ways we are experiencing an economic collapse right now. When the next major financial crisis occurs, many will be calling that "an economic collapse". But if you really want to grasp what is happening to us, you need to think long-term. We are heading for a complete and total nightmare, but it is going to take some time to get to the end of the story.

Yes, there will certainly be times of great chaos. The financial crisis of 2008 was one of those moments.

But the financial crisis of 2008 did not completely destroy us.

Neither will the next crisis.

I think it is helpful to think of what is happening to us as a series of waves.

When you build a beautiful sand castle on the beach, the first wave that comes in does not totally destroy it.

Rather, the first wave weakens the castle and it is destroyed by subsequent waves.

Well, that is what is happening to us.

The financial crisis of 2008 was a wave.

The epicenter of the next great financial crisis will be in Europe and that will be another wave.

For many, the next financial crisis will feel like "the end of the world" but it won't be.

There will be waves after that one that will be even worse.

Yes, the waves are going to start coming more rapidly and will start becoming more intense.

In that way, they will kind of be like birth pains.

But these problems did not build up overnight and they are not going to disappear overnight either.

A lot of people that write about the coming economic collapse seem to suggest that we should just let it happen so that the "recovery" can begin.

Unfortunately, it is not going to be so simple.

Vader

Nixon 'Far Worse' Than Thought Say Watergate Reporters

Richard Nixon
© unknown
Richard Nixon
Washington - Almost four decades after the infamous Watergate break-in, the reporters who broke the story have concluded that then-president Richard Nixon was "far worse" than they thought.

Nixon resigned in August 1974 for his administration's role in a June 17, 1972, burglary of the Democratic National Committee headquarters at the Watergate complex in the US capital and the subsequent cover-up. He became the only American president ever to resign the office.

Many inaccurate ideas and myths related to Nixon's role in the burglary and its cover-up have found long life over the years, reporters Carl Bernstein and Bob Woodward wrote in an op-ed piece for The Washington Post Saturday.

"Another ... has since persisted, often unchallenged: the notion that the cover-up was worse than the crime. This idea minimizes the scale and reach of Nixon's criminal actions," the reporters stressed.

Mr. Potato

Francois Hollande's Socialists Poised to Seize Parliamentary Majority

French President Francois Hollande's Socialists and allies came out on top in first-round parliamentary elections Sunday, poised to secure the majority needed to push through tax-and-spend reforms.
François Hollande, Valerie Trierweiler
© REX
The French president, François Hollande, and his partner, Valerie Trierweiler
The election also saw a surge in support for Marine Le Pen's far-right National Front, which wants to ditch the euro and battle against what she calls the "Islamisation" of France.

The Socialists, Greens and allies won around 46 per cent of the vote, ahead of the 34 per cent for ex-president Nicolas Sarkozy's right-wing UMP party and its allies, the final results released by the interior ministry showed.

Pollsters TNS Sofres, IPOs and OpinonWay agreed that the Socialists and close allies might win between 283-329 seats in the 577-seat National Assembly or potentially as many as 329 and could hold power in the parliament without relying of the votes of the Greens or the anti-capitalist Left Front.

Hollande defeated Sarkozy in last month's presidential election and wants voters to give him a strong mandate to enact reforms as France battles Europe's crippling debt crisis, rising joblessness and a stagnant economy.

If next week's second round confirms Sunday's results, it will boost his status in Europe as champion of the movement away from German-led fixation on austerity towards growth, which he favours as the solution to the economic crisis.