Welcome to Sott.net
Thu, 04 Mar 2021
The World for People who Think

Puppet Masters
Map

Arrow Down

Canada: Alberta Premier Stepping Down as Deficit Lingers

Alberta premier Stelmach
© unknown
Alberta premier Stelmach answers questions at a news conference in Calgary
Alberta Premier Ed Stelmach surprised voters on Tuesday by saying he will resign, just three years after winning the largest parliamentary majority in the oil-rich province's history.

Stelmach, 59, a farmer by trade who has had a tumultuous relationship with Alberta's powerful energy industry, told reporters he plans to step down as head of the governing Progressive Conservative Party before the next election.

"There is no doubt that my decision today will come as a shock to many and a disappointment to my friends and Albertans," he said.

Alberta is one of the top suppliers of oil to the United States, thanks largely to its vast oil sands, the largest crude reserves outside the Middle East.

In his first election as leader, Stelmach's party won a landslide victory in the Western Canadian province of 3.3 million in 2008, despite discontent over his moves to boost royalties levied on the oil sector.

Since then, the premier has taken hits from disgruntled oil and gas producers, though royalty rates were rolled back during the recession, while facing accusations that his Conservatives have mismanaged the province's healthcare system.

Bomb

Moscow airport bomb may have been delivered by two people and detonated remotely, ruling out suicide

Image
© RIA Novosti/Reuters
"Yes Mr. President, it was you-know-who..."
Dmitry Medvedev today accused government officials of allowing security checks at Domodedovo airport to slip into "a state of anarchy", amid reports that a Black Widow suicide bomber detonated the bomb that killed 35 people there yesterday.

The Russian president told chiefs of the federal security service (FSB) that those responsible for transport security "could be dismissed or face other sanctions" as a result of the negligence.

"We will have to put in place a much tougher inspection system, total inspections. It will likely take passengers longer, but it's the only way out," he said. "The information available to us [from Domodedovo] suggests that it was simply a state of anarchy. People were able to enter [the airport] from any place. Control over people's movements was partial and did not apply to those waiting for passengers."

Medevedev said earlier in the day: "What happened shows that there were clear security violations."

Bad Guys

Shocking US plan to relocate Palestinian refugees to South America

Image
© Ali Ali/EPA
Children at a Gaza refugee camp: Condoleezza Rice, US secretary of state under George Bush, suggested in 2008 that Palestinian refugees could be resettled in Chile and Argentina.
Palestinians have expressed shock and dismay at the US suggestion to settle Palestinian refugees in Argentina and Chile rather than let them return to ancestral land in Israel.

Representatives of the Palestinian diaspora said the plan to ship displaced Palestinians from the Middle East to a new homeland across the Atlantic clashed with their fundamental right to go home.

"It's completely unacceptable. It contradicts our inalienable right to return to our own homeland," said Daniel Jadue, vice-president of Chile's Palestine Federation. "That right cannot be renounced. To make this suggestion shows the mediation was not honest. It was clearly tilted in favour of Israel. This is extremely grave."

USA

The Doomsday Project, Deep Events, and the Shrinking of American Democracy

Image

Prof Peter Dale Scott
I know the capacity that is there to make tyranny total in America, and we must see to it that this agency [the National Security Agency] and all agencies that possess this technology operate within the law and under proper supervision, so that we never cross over that abyss. That is the abyss from which there is no return." -- Senator Frank Church (1975)
In recent years I have become more and more concerned with the interactions between three important and alarming trends in recent American history. The first is America's increasing militarization, and above all its inclination, even obsession, to involve itself in needless and pernicious wars. The second, closely related, is the progressive shrinking of public politics and the rule of law as they are subordinated, even domestically, to the requirements of covert U.S. operations abroad.

The third, also closely related, is the important and increasingly deleterious impact on American history and the global extension of American power, of what I have called deep events. These events, like the JFK assassination, the Watergate break-in, or 9/11, which repeatedly involve law-breaking or violence, are mysterious to begin with, are embedded in ongoing covert processes, have consequences that enlarge covert government, and are subsequently covered up by systematic falsifications in media and internal government records.

One factor linking Dallas, Watergate, and 9/11, has been the involvement in all three deep events of personnel involved in America's highest-level emergency planning, known since the 1980s as Continuity of Government (COG) planning, or more colloquially as "the Doomsday Project." The implementation of COG plans on 9/11, or what I call Doomsday Power, was the culmination of three decades of such planning, and has resulted in the permanent militarization of the domestic United States, and the imposition at home of institutions and processes designed for domination abroad.

Writing about these deep events as they occurred over the decades, I have been interested in the interrelations among them. It is now possible to show how each was related both to those preceding it, and those which followed.

Sheriff

Former Minneapolis Governor Jesse Ventura Sues US Transportation Security Administration Over Its Infringements of Privacy

Image
© AP Photo
Minneapolis - Former Minnesota Gov. Jesse Ventura sued the Department of Homeland Security and the Transportation Security Administration on Monday, alleging full-body scans and pat-downs at airport checkpoints violate his right to be free from unreasonable searches and seizures.

Ventura is asking a federal judge in Minnesota to issue an injunction ordering officials to stop subjecting him to "warrantless and suspicionless" scans and body searches.

The lawsuit, which also names Homeland Security Secretary Janet Napolitano and TSA Administrator John Pistole as defendants, argues the searches are "unwarranted and unreasonable intrusions on Governor Ventura's personal privacy and dignity . and are a justifiable cause for him to be concerned for his personal health and well-being."

According to the lawsuit, Ventura received a hip replacement in 2008, and since then, his titanium implant has set off metal detectors at airport security checkpoints. The lawsuit said that prior to last November officials had used a non-invasive hand-held wand to scan his body as a secondary security measure.

No Entry

Obama may get power to shut down Internet without court oversight

Image
A bill giving the president an Internet "kill switch" during times of emergency that failed to pass Congress last year will return this year, but with a revision that has many civil liberties advocates concerned: It will give the president the ability to shut down parts of the Internet without any court oversight.

The Protecting Cyberspace as a National Asset Act was introduced last year by Sens. Joe Lieberman (I-CT) and Susan Collins (R-ME) in an effort to combat cyber-crime and the threat of online warfare and terrorism.

Critics said the bill would allow the president to disconnect Internet networks and force private websites to comply with broad cybersecurity measures. Future US presidents would have those powers renewed indefinitely.

According to a report Monday at CNET News, the bill will be back on the Senate agenda in the new year. But a revision introduced into the bill in December would exempt the law from judicial oversight. According to critics, this change would open the law to politically-motivated abuse by any administration, no matter how narrowly the law is interpreted.

Cheeseburger

US: Taco Bell Asked in Suit to Be True About The Beef

Image
© Paul Sakuma AP
So what is in that "fourth meal"?
A law firm claims in a lawsuit that Taco Bell is using false advertising when it refers to using "seasoned ground beef" or "seasoned beef" in its products.

The meat mixture sold by Taco Bell restaurants contains binders and extenders and does not meet the minimum requirements set by the U.S. Department of Agriculture to be labeled as "beef," according to the legal complaint.

The class-action lawsuit was filed Friday in federal court in the Central District of California by the Montgomery law firm Beasley, Allen, Crow, Methvin, Portis & Miles.

Attorney Dee Miles said attorneys had Taco Bell's "meat mixture" tested and found it contained less that 35 percent beef.

The lawsuit on behalf of Taco Bell customer and California resident Amanda Obney does not seek monetary damages, but asks the court to order Taco Bell to be honest in its advertising.

"We are asking that they stop saying that they are selling beef," Miles said.

Heart - Black

Monsanto's latest farmwashing ad campaign debuts

Image
© Monsanto, Marlboro
Marlsanto: A persuasive combine-nation?
Now that the Supreme Court has declared that corporations are people, too (happy birthday, Citizens United!), Monsanto is apparently out to put a friendly, slightly weather-beaten, gently grizzled face on industrial agriculture. The above ad (the lefthand one) is part of a campaign currently appearing in bus shelters in D.C., including just outside USDA headquarters, among other places. The link, Americasfarmers.com, forwards to a Monsanto page.

This guy looks an awful lot like Henry Fonda playing Tom Joad in The Grapes of Wrath, which seems only fitting since Agribiz may be helping to create a 21st century Dust Bowl.

After decades of boasting about how fossil-fuel-intensive industrial agriculture has made it possible for far fewer farmers to produce way more food, Monsanto is now championing the power of farming to create jobs and preserve land. Does this attempt by a biotechnology behemoth to wrap itself in a populist plaid flannel shirt give you the warm and fuzzies, or just burn you up?

Stormtrooper

Recording a Police Officer Could Get You 15 Years in Jail

Image
© Shutterstock
Citizens recording their public interactions with police sure seems like the kind of thing that would prevent corruption, harassment and bad behavior by cops. Just don't do it in Illinois, where it's punishable by up to 15 years in prison.

Sixty-year-old Chicago artist Christopher Drew is currently facing an eavesdropping charge because he recorded his arrest for "selling art without a permit." Eavesdropping - that is, recording conversations, either public or private, without universal consent - is a felony in Illinois, and Drew could face 15 years in prison.

Dollar

Bono and Bill Gates-Backed Global Health Charity Exposed as a Fraud

Image
© Activist Post
What institutions can you trust these days with your donations? The Associated Press reported today that the $21.7 billion Global Fund to Fight AIDS, Tuberculosis and Malaria is a fraud where at least two-thirds of the funds were "pocketed," and donated medicines were sold on the black market for profit.

The prestigious development fund is backed by celebrities like Bono, politicians like French president Sarkozy, and a cool $150 million from Bill and Melinda Gates. The AP wrote, "The fund has been a darling of the power set that will hold the World Economic Forum in the Swiss mountain village of Davos this week."

Although many of the contributors to this fund likely had good intentions for their donation, it seems that funds of this size are too-big-to-succeed and are ripe for corruption. The fund spokesman, Jon Liden, said, "We would contend that we do not have any corruption problems that are significantly different in scale or nature to any other international financing institution."