Puppet MastersS


R2-D2

Drone Club

predator drone
The first rule of Fight Club?

You don't talk about Fight Club.

Obama isn't a member of Fight Club; he's a member of Drone Club - which targets individuals in foreign lands, including American citizens and their families, for extrajudicial assassination by drone. And the first rule of Drone Club?

You don't talk about it.

Cow

$83,046 For A 3 Hour Hospital Visit in the US - Health Care or Money-Making Scam?

Image
The fastest way to go broke in America is to go to the hospital. These days it seems like almost everyone has an outrageous hospital bill story to share. It is getting to the point where most people are deathly afraid to go to the hospital. All the financial progress that you have made in recent years can literally be wiped out in just a matter of hours. For example, you are about to read about an Arizona woman that was recently charged $83,046 for a 3 hour hospital visit. How in the world is anyone supposed to pay a bill like that? I have a really hard time understanding why a visit to the doctor should ever be more than a couple hundred bucks or why a hospital stay should ever be more than a couple thousand dollars. Outrageous hospital bills are a real pet peeve of mine and I have not even been to the hospital in ages. What makes all of this even more infuriating is that Medicare, Medicaid and the big insurance companies are often charged less than 10 percent of what the rest of us are billed for the same procedures. There is a reason why 41 percent of all working age Americans are struggling with medical debt right now. It is because our health care system has become a giant money making scam. Millions of desperate Americans go into hospitals each year assuming that they will be treated fairly, but in the end they get stuck with incredibly outrageous bills and in many cases cruel debt collection techniques are employed against them if they don't pay.

So why do we have to pay so much for medical care? Back in 1980, less than 10 percent of U.S. GDP went to health care. Today, about 18 percent of U.S. GDP goes toward health care.

Info

Monsanto, Which is Fighting Efforts to Label Genetically Engineered Food in California, Supported Labeling Such Food in Britain

Image
Monsanto fully supports the labeling of foods with genetically engineered products.

In the United Kingdom.

St. Louis-based Monsanto, a leading producer of genetically engineered seeds and chemicals such as the herbicide Roundup, has donated $4.2 million to efforts to defeat Proposition 37, a controversial measure on the November ballot that would require labeling for genetically engineered foods.

But in the late 1990s, Monsanto ran advertisements in Britain that supported food labeling, which is common in Europe.

The European Union first approved labels for genetically engineered food in 1997, and specific rules covering corn and soy came a year later. Monsanto's ads in Europe apparently ran after the decision to label foods had been made. Labeling rules in the United Kingdom went into effect in early 1999.

Pirates

"Managing" the Plaza: America's Secret Deal with Mexican Drug Cartels

In a story which should have made front page headlines, Narco News investigative journalist Bill Conroy revealed that:
A high-ranking Sinaloa narco-trafficking organization member's claim that US officials have struck a deal with the leadership of the Mexican 'cartel' appears to be corroborated in large part by the statements of a Mexican diplomat in email correspondence made public recently by the nonprofit media group WikiLeaks.
A series of some five million emails, The Global Intelligence Files, were obtained by the secret-spilling organization as a result of last year's hack by Anonymous of the Texas-based "global intelligence" firm Stratfor.

Bad tradecraft aside, the Stratfor dump offers readers insight into a shadowy world where information is sold to the highest bidder through a "a global network of informants who are paid via Swiss banks accounts and pre-paid credit cards. Stratfor has a mix of covert and overt informants, which includes government employees, embassy staff and journalists around the world."

One of those informants was a Mexican intelligence officer with the Centro de Investigación y Seguridad Nacional, or CISEN, Mexico's equivalent to the CIA. Dubbed "MX1″ by Stratfor, he operates under diplomatic cover at the Mexican consulate in Phoenix, Arizona after a similar posting at the consulate in El Paso, Texas.

His cover was blown by the intelligence grifters when they identified him in their correspondence as Fernando de la Mora, described by Stratfor as "being molded to be the Mexican 'tip of the spear' in the U.S."

In an earlier Narco News story, Conroy revealed that "US soldiers are operating inside Mexico as part of the drug war and the Mexican government provided critical intelligence to US agents in the now-discredited Fast and Furious gun-running operation," the Mexican diplomat claimed in email correspondence.

Coffee

Best of the Web: Fooled you once: Democrats Retreat on Civil Liberties in 2012 Platform

gitmo
© Flickr/US ArmyUS Soldiers jog by a guard tower at Camp Delta in 2010.

What a difference four years makes.

In 2008, Democrats were eager to draw a contrast with what they then portrayed as Republican excesses in the fight against Al Qaeda. Since then, the Obama administration has in many cases continued the national security policies of its predecessor - and the Democratic Party's 2012 platform highlights this reversal, abandoning much of the substance and all of the bombast of the 2008 platform. Here are a few places where the differences are most glaring:

Bad Guys

Best of the Web: Obama campaign brags about its persecution of whistleblowers

Drone strike Yemen
© Reuters A US drone strike in eastern Yemen on Sunday was claimed by a security official to have killed six suspected Islamist militants. The Yemeni government has contradicted this, saying the intended target was 'completely missed', and 13 civilians were killed instead.
Excuse me if I don't join in Democrats' sycophantic cheerleading for an Obama presidency that has shredded laws and liberties

For several decades, protection of whistleblowers has been a core political value for Democrats, at least for progressives. Daniel Ellsberg has long been viewed by liberals as an American hero for his disclosure of the top secret Pentagon Papers. In 2008, candidate Obama hailed whistleblowing as "acts of courage and patriotism", which "should be encouraged rather than stifled as they have been during the Bush administration".

President Obama, however, has waged the most aggressive and vindictive assault on whistleblowers of any president in American history, as even political magazines generally supportive of him have recognized and condemned. One might think that, as the party's faithful gather to celebrate the greatness of this leader, this fact would be a minor problem, a source of some tension between Obama and his hardest-core supporters, perhaps even some embarrassment. One would be wrong.

Far from shying away from this record of persecuting whistleblowers, the Obama campaign is proudly boasting of it. A so-called "Truth Team" of the Obama/Biden 2012 campaign issued a document responding to allegations that the Obama White House has leaked classified information in order to glorify the president:

USA

Human rights group alleges US waterboarded Gaddafi opponents

  • Tony Blair and Gaddafi
    © Stefan Rousseau/PA Prime Minister Tony Blair meets Libyan leader Muammar Gaddafi in 2007.
    New waterboarding allegations detailed
  • CIA says its job is to collaborate with foreign governments
  • U.S. Justice Department recently closed probe of CIA actions
A human rights organization says it has collected evidence of two previously unreported cases in which U.S. agents used waterboarding or a similar harsh interrogation technique on Libyan militants held by American forces in Afghanistan.

In a report released on Thursday, Human Rights Watch also says it acquired new evidence of the extent to which the United States and some of its allies, including Great Britain, allegedly detained exiled opponents of late Libyan leader Muammar Gaddafi and forcibly transferred them back to Libya.

Human Rights Watch said that it assembled its report by interviewing victims and witnesses familiar with alleged abuses and by combing through once-secret archives that became public during the Libyan revolution that led to Gaddafi's ouster and eventual death.

Documents found in the archives following the collapse of Gaddafi's regime included classified correspondence between top Libyan officials and officials from the CIA and Britain's spy agencies MI5 and MI6.

They illustrate how, between late 2003 when Gaddafi agreed to give up his weapons of mass destruction programs, and the 2011 Libyan revolution, Gaddafi and Western intelligence agencies quietly cooperated in battling Islamic militants.

"Not only did the U.S. deliver Gaddafi his enemies on a silver platter, but it seems the CIA tortured many of them first," Laura Pitter, a counterterrorism expert at Human Rights Watch and author of the report, said in a written statement.

Mr. Potato

Best of the Web: Mitt Romney Accidentally Confronts A Gay Veteran; Awesomeness Ensues

Back in December 2011 during a campaign stop in New Hampshire, Mitt Romney decided to drop by Vietnam War veteran Bob Garon's breakfast table for a quick photo-op. What Romney didn't realize is that Garon was sitting with his husband, whom he had married just a few months earlier.

What followed might be the single greatest "oblivious Romney" moment of the entire campaign. Enjoy.

Vader

Reality Check: Ohio Reporter Ben Swann Exposes Devious Duplicity of Obama's 'Kill List'

Challenging President Obama on extrajudicial assassinations, a broadcast journalist whips out the "Reality Check."


Megaphone

Hamas Urges Muslims to Help Free Palestine through Collective Efforts

Image
© Fars News Agency

Representative of the Palestinian Islamic Resistance Movement (Hamas) Khaled Qadoumi called on the world Muslim states to contribute their share to the efforts made for the freedom of Palestine, stressing that the holy land of the Islamic Ummah can only be set free through the collective efforts of the worldwide Muslims.

"Freedom of Palestine is a responsibility which should be shared by all Muslims," Qadoumi said, addressing a gathering on Islamic Resistance in Iran's Central city of Isfahan on Wednesday.

He pointed to the Palestinian nation's continued resistance against the Zionist regime, and noted, "We feel that we are not alone in our resistance because Islamic nations such as Iran and Syria are backing us in this regard."