Puppet MastersS

Cult

Formula One billionaire Bernie Ecclestone: 'Hitler was able to get things done'

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Billionaire Formula One (F-1) owner Bernie Eccelstone and F-1 President Max Mosley have disgraced F-1 motorsports with their neo-Nazi like S&M games (Moseley) and Ecclestone's shameless pro- Hitler remarks, praises for Saddam and the Taliban. Mosley is the son of infamous British Fascist, Oswald Mosley. He was caught on video in a Nazi S&M romp with prostitutes. Note what Times on-line report, 'F1: Hitler Remarks Touch Off Fire Storm' has to say about their outrageous interview with Ecclestone:
In an outspoken interview with The Times, the 78-year-old billionaire chastised contemporary politicians for their weakness and extolled the virtues of strong leadership.

Mr. Ecclestone said: "In a lot of ways, terrible to say this I suppose, but apart from the fact that Hitler got taken away and persuaded to do things that I have no idea whether he wanted to do or not, he was in the way that he could command a lot of people, able to get things done."

"In the end he got lost, so he wasn't a very good dictator because either he had all these things and knew what was going on and insisted, or he just went along with it . . . so either way he wasn't a dictator." He also rounded on democracy, claiming that "it hasn't done a lot of good for many countries - including this one [Britain]".

People

French Voters Frustrated on Eve of Election Day

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© Reuters/Philippe WojazerOfficial campaign posters for French President and UMP political party candidate Nicolas Sarkozy (R) and Socialist Party candidate Francois Hollande, for the 2012 French presidential election, are displayed on a wall in Paris April 16, 2012.
Paris - French voters voiced disillusionment on Saturday at a campaign that many said ignored the country's real problems, on the eve of a first-round vote expected to send President Nicolas Sarkozy and Socialist rival Francois Hollande to a runoff next month.

A day ahead of voting in mainland France, the first ballots were cast in overseas territories, from French Guiana on the northern shores of South America to the Pacific islands of Polynesia.

In France, the presidential campaign largely disappeared from the airwaves as the 10 candidates observed a one-day blackout imposed by law from midnight on Friday.

Final polls showed Hollande narrowly ahead of conservative Sarkozy for Sunday's first round and comfortably winning the May 6 runoff to become France's first Socialist president since Francois Mitterrand left office in 1995.

The prospect of record abstention loomed over Sunday's ballot, with many people complaining that none of the candidates appealed to them.

Under the banner "They Don't Represent Us", hundreds of young demonstrators marched through Paris.

"Not one of the candidate appears credible to me. Politics is controlled by finance," Duncan, a 19-year-old student, told Reuters as the protest converged on the stock exchange.

Bomb

Propaganda Alert! Afghans Seize 10,000 Kilograms of Explosives Smuggled from Pakistan, Foil Alleged Attack

Kabul - Afghan security forces have arrested five militants with 10,000 kilograms (22,000 pounds) of explosives that they smuggled in from Pakistan to carry out a massive attack in Kabul, as well as another three suspects allegedly planning to assassinate the vice-president, an official said Saturday.

The reports of new planned attacks in the Afghan capital came a week after militants said to be part of the Pakistan-based Haqqani group launched co-ordinated assaults in the heart of Kabul and in three other cities.

U.S. officials say they have stepped up pressure on Islamabad to crack down on the Haqqanis, who specializes in high-profile strikes against well-protected targets.

Three of the five men arrested with the explosives were members of the Pakistani Taliban, while the other two belonged to the Afghan Taliban, National Director for Security spokesman Shafiqullah Tahiry told reporters. He said the men's orders came from militant leaders with ties to Pakistani intelligence. He did not say when the arrests took place, nor what their intended target was.

Tahiry said the seized explosives were packed in 400 bags and hidden under potatoes loaded in a truck with Pakistani license plates.

Attention

Weapons Expert Who Worked With Dr.David Kelly Found Dead

Holmes and Kelly
© Mail Online/Eddie Mulholland Rex Features'Stressed': The cause of Richard Holmes's (left) death is still unknown. David Kelly (right) was found dead nine years ago.
A weapons expert who worked with Dr David Kelly at the Government's secret chemical warfare laboratory has been found dead in an apparent suicide. In circumstances strongly reminiscent of Dr Kelly's own mysterious death nine years ago, the body of Dr Richard Holmes was discovered in a field four miles from the Porton Down defence establishment in Wiltshire. It is not yet known how he died.Mr Holmes, 48, had gone missing two days earlier after telling his wife he was going out for a walk - just as Dr Kelly did before he was found dead at an Oxfordshire beauty spot in July 2003.

Police said there were no suspicious circumstances in the latest case but revealed that Dr Holmes had 'recently been under a great deal of stress'.

He resigned from Porton Down last month, although the centre yesterday refused to explain why.Inevitably, the parallels between the two cases will arouse the suspicions of conspiracy theorists.

Despite Lord Hutton's ruling eight years ago that Dr Kelly committed suicide, many people - among them a group of doctors - believe his inquiry was insufficient and have demanded a full inquest.

Some believe Dr Kelly, who kept an office at Porton Down right up until his death, was murdered. He was outed as being the source of a BBC report that Downing Street 'sexed up' evidence of Iraq's weapons of mass destruction to justify going to war.

Stormtrooper

Homeland Security Stomps on Freedom of the Press

Freedom of speech might allow journalists to get away with a lot in America, but the Department of Homeland Security is on the ready to make sure that the government is keeping dibs on who is saying what.
Department of Homeland Security
© Department of Homeland Security
Under the National Operations Center (NOC)'s Media Monitoring Initiative that came out of DHS headquarters in November, Washington has the written permission to retain data on users of social media and online networking platforms.

Specifically, the DHS announced the NCO and its Office of Operations Coordination and Planning (OPS) can collect personal information from news anchors, journalists, reporters or anyone who may use "traditional and/or social media in real time to keep their audience situationally aware and informed."

According to the Department of Homeland Security's own definition of personal identifiable information, or PII, such data could consist of any intellect "that permits the identity of an individual to be directly or indirectly inferred, including any information which is linked or linkable to that individual." Previously established guidelines within the administration say that data could only be collected under authorization set forth by written code, but the new provisions in the NOC's write-up means that any reporter, whether someone along the lines of Walter Cronkite or a budding blogger, can be victimized by the agency.

Bomb

Poverty-Stricken Struggle with War on Welfare

It's not easy for poor people to get cash assistance in America.

Prior to welfare reform in 1996, 68 of every 100 poor families with children received cash assistance through Aid to Families with Dependent Children (AFDC). But by 2010, under the Temporary Assistance for Needy Families (TANF) program which replaced AFDC, just 27 of every 100 poor families received benefits. The rolls shrunk as states were given wide discretion over eligibility, benefit levels, time limits, and how to use their TANF block grants which were frozen at 1996 funding levels and not indexed for inflation.
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Georgia is known as a particularly difficult state when it comes to accessing TANF. According to the Center on Budget and Policy Priorities (CBPP), in 2008-09 for every 100 poor families with children in Georgia, only eight received cash aid.

Now the state is set to make its TANF application process even more onerous.

On Monday, Republican Governor Nathan Deal signed a law requiring that people approved for TANF receive a drug test within forty-eight hours. They also have to pay a $17 fee for the test and it isn't refunded, even if a person passes. In addition to the financial burden, forty-eight hours can be tough for someone who may need to arrange for childcare, or find transportation to a testing site.

USA

Business as Usual: A Conspiracy of Whores

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© UnknownColombian President Santos and President Obama, and Hillary Clinton dancing at the Havana nightclub in Cartagena
Whore: (verb) To debase oneself by doing something for unworthy motives, typically to make money.
-The New Oxford American Dictionary

It's a challenge to make adult sense of the absurdities coming out of Colombia right now.

I had first planned to write about the Drug War aspect of President Obama's summit meeting in Cartagena, since it's quite amazing when the right-wing president of Colombia publicly lobbies the US president to shift the Drug War from military operations against supply in Latin America to a more social approach against demand in the US. After all, Colombia is the highly militarized US showcase nation in the 40-year Drug War.

"Despite all of the efforts, the immense efforts, the huge costs, we have to recognize that the illicit drug business is prospering," Colombian President Juan Manuel Santos told the attending leaders. He even advocated a process of decriminalization, though he recognized this was only a "starting point to begin a discussion that we have been postponing for far too long."

This is real news.

Our Drug War is a military/police enterprise focused on attacking the supply of drugs coming from Latin America. Santos seems to concede it's a dismal failure. He also knows the accumulated conditions of that failure are so entrenched in the hemisphere that it's hard to even begin to discuss a way out.

Bizarro Earth

Psychopathic Endless War: Afghanistan and U.S. Strategy

Last weekend, in Kabul, Afghan Peace Volunteer friends huddled in the back room of their simple home. With a digital camera, glimpses and sounds of their experiences were captured, as warfare erupted three blocks away.
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© ReutersSmoke rises from the site of an attack in Paktia province.

The fighting has subdued, but the video gives us a glimpse into chronic anxieties among civilians throughout Afghanistan. Later, we learned more: Ghulam awakens suddenly, well after midnight, and begins to pace through a room of sleeping people, screaming. Ali suddenly tears up, after an evening meal, and leaves the room to sit outside. Staring at the sky and the moon, he finds solace. Yet another puzzles over what brings people to the point of loaning themselves to possibly kill or be killed, over issues so easily manipulated by politicians.

I asked our friend, Hakim, who mentors the Afghan Peace Volunteers, if ordinary Afghans are aware that the U.S. has an estimated 400 or more Forward Operating Bases across Afghanistan and that it is planning to construct what will become the world's largest U.S. Embassy, in Kabul. Hakim thinks young people across Kabul are well aware of this. "Do they know," I asked, "that the U.S. Air Force has hired 60,000 - 70,000 analysts to study information collected through drone surveillance? The film footage amounts to the equivalent of 58,000 full length feature films. The Rand Corporation says that 100,000 analysts are needed to understand 'patterns of life' in Afghanistan."

Briefcase

Monsanto Threatens Vermont With Legal Action if it Passes GMO Labeling Bill

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Things are heating up on the genetic engineering front in the state of Vermont, where an overwhelming 96 percent of Vermonters vehemently support "right to know" legislation that mandates full disclosure of genetically-modified organisms (GMOs) on food labels. But according to Ronnie Cummins from the Organic Consumers Association (OCA), Monsanto is now threatening to sue the state of Vermont should it dare to pass such legislation, which has stalled it in committee.

H.722, also known as the Vermont Right to Know Genetically Engineered Food Act, would require any food product that contains GMOs to be labeled as such. It would also prohibit GMO-containing foods from being labeled "all natural" or "naturally grown," which is quite common today, including even on some food products sold at health food grocers.

If passed, H.722 will make Vermont the first U.S. state to take a stand for transparency in food labeling, which will set a precedent for the other 49 states to mimic. And since numerous polls have showed that the vast majority of Americans from all states are in favor of GMO labeling, it will only be a matter of time before every state legislature is forced to come to terms with the GMO issue, or at least address it.

Star of David

Unexpected Turns in the Israeli-Iranian Duel

Catherine Ashton
© UnknownCatherine Ashton, European Union's High Representative of the Union for Foreign Affairs and Security Policy
Quite apart from its continued oppression and dispossession of the Palestinians, Israel has a long record of murdering its political opponents, and is widely believed to have been responsible for the assassination of five Iranian nuclear scientists in the last two years, as well as for introducing the Stuxnet virus into Iran's computer systems -- clear acts of state terrorism. -- Patrick Seale

Although it is too early to make a judgement, it looks as if Israel's Iran policy has back-fired and may result in a very different outcome from the one Prime Minister Benyamin Netanyahu has long sought.

Israel's thinking these past three years has been that punitive sanctions, cyber warfare and the assassination of Iran's nuclear scientists must eventually force a crippled Islamic Republic to agree to 'zero enrichment' of uranium - that is to say to dismantle its entire nuclear programme. This, it was hoped, would open the way for 'regime change' in Tehran.

To bring about sufficiently severe pressure on Iran, Israel's strategy has been to threaten to attack. It calculated -- rightly as it turned out -- that the United States and its allies would not dare call its bluff. Instead -- to head off an Israeli attack, which they feared could trigger a regional war with unpredictable and potentially catastrophic consequences -- they worked to bring Iran's economy to its knees.

Israel's strategy was working. Everything seemed to be going its way. Punitive sanctions on Iran were beginning to bite. Impatient for regime change, pro-Israeli propagandists in the United States had even started to call for covert action in support of the Iranian opposition.