Sunday, 10 November 2013

Re: Goldman Sachs Has Chosen Our Next President

what's worse her opponent could be a bush .

On Sun, Nov 10, 2013 at 5:55 PM, MJ <michaelj@america.net> wrote:
>
> 31 October 2013
> Goldman Sachs Has Chosen Our Next President
> Thomas DiLorenzo
>
> Drum roll please . . . . . . . . . . it's . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .
> Hillary Clinton!, whom Goldman just paid $400,000 for two speeches.
>
> Is there a more money-grubbing woman anywhere in America? There's no one
> more greedy and obsessed with money than a socialist ideologue.
>
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I Ask Again: Can We Sue for Fraudulent Misrepresentation?


I Ask Again: Can We Sue for Fraudulent Misrepresentation?
by Don Boudreaux on October 29, 2013

Here's a headline on the home page now (10:37pm EDT, October 29, 2013) of the Washington Post:

Canceled policies spur furor over health-care law

This headline gives you an accurate sense of the contents of the report – a report in which administration officials admit that, yes indeed, despite Pres. Obama's assurances to the contrary, many people are not allowed to keep their existing health-care plans.  These people must switch to plans that have official government approval (which their existing plans do not).  And here's a paragraph from that report:

While Republicans are insisting that the president misled the public about the effects of the law, others who are sympathetic to the administration said the seeming contradiction shows the difference between political talking points intended to sell a controversial law and the intricacies of the health policies that underlie it.

Note that the now-revealed error – some might call it a lie – of Pres. Obama's vigorously repeated assurance that Obamacare will not force anyone to give up health-care plans that they like is called here a "seeming contradiction."  But there's nothing "seeming" about it; it's a contradiction.  The president said that reality would be Z; the reality, as it turns out, is not-Z.

Even more disturbing, though, is the attempt by "others who are sympathetic to the administration" to explain away this "seeming contradiction" by figuratively harrumphing and pointing out the 'reality' of the "difference between political talking points intended to sell a controversial law and the intricacies of" the realities that underlie that legislation.  These administration sympathizers, in effect, excuse the president's lying.  These 'sympathizers' have the gall to excuse a falsehood on the grounds that that falsehood was meant to "sell a controversial law."

Suppose that a used-car salesman assures a customer that this baby of a 2006 Honda Accord really and truly, cross-his-heart-and-hope-to-die, will never cost more than $100 in annual maintenance expenses.  Then the buyer discovers that the car costs him $2,500 in annual maintenance expenses.  Can the used-car-salesman's employer say – and get away with saying – "Oh, the seeming contradiction between Barry-the-saleman's description of what the customer bought and what the customer actually bought shows the difference between the talking points of trying to sell a complicated vehicle and the realities of that vehicle.  The customer should be positively grateful for Barry-the-salesman's misleading description, because, really, the car that Barry persuaded – with his misrepresentations – the customer to buy really is a much better vehicle, in our opinion, than what the customer would still be driving had Barry not been so persuasive in his sales tactics."?

Some of the president's most central and important claims about Obamacare are revealed now – and widely admitted – to be wrong.  If he were the CEO of a private company he would be sued, publicly lambasted by all the major media, perhaps hauled before an admittedly grandstanding Congressional committee, and possibly prosecuted, convicted, fined, or even imprisoned for fraudulent misrepresentation.  But because Obama is a politician, his misrepresentations are excused as simplifying descriptions aimed at persuading the doofus public to fall for legislation that they would not have fallen for had the president described that legislation honestly and accurately.

Politics is the profession of scoundrels.

http://cafehayek.com/2013/10/i-ask-again-can-we-sue-for-fraudulent-misrepresentation.html?utm_source=feedburner&utm_medium=email&utm_campaign=Feed%3A+CafeHayek+%28Cafe+Hayek%29

Censoring the “S” Word


Censoring the "S" Word
By Thomas DiLorenzo
October 30, 2013

"It is a very significant fact that the adversaries of the trend toward more government control describe their opposition as a fight against Washington and against Berne, i.e., against centralization.  It is conceived as a contest of states' rights versus the central power." -- Ludwig von Mises, Omnipotent Government, p. 268

"I saw in States' rights the only availing check upon the absolutism of the sovereign will, and secession filled me with hope, not as the destruction but as the redemption of Democracy." -- Letter from Lord Acton to General Robert E.Lee, Nov. 4, 1866


Do Silicon Valley entrepreneurs want to bring back slavery, perhaps using the newly enslaved to assemble computers and other electronics?  One Anand Giridharadas, writing in the October 28 New York Times, would have you think so.  His opening sentences are:  "First the slave South, now this.  Is Silicon trying to secede from America?

Giridharadas is apparently horrified that a Silicon Valley entrepreneur named Balaji Srinivasan gave a speech at Stanford University recently in which he advocated "seceding from [American] society" and its looting and over-bloated welfare/warfare state.

As is typical of all statists, inside and outside of government, whenever the "S" word is mentioned Giridharadas, like all the rest, attempts to effectively censor all discussion of secession by insinuating that taking the idea seriously reveals that one must secretly condone slavery.  Or at least be an apologist for the Confederacy, an institution that has been demonized by the American state like no other for the past 160 years.  (The same American state that condoned and enforced slavery with Fugitive Slave Clauses and Acts from the end of the Revolutionary War (1783) until 1866).

In addition to this silly censorship game, your typical worshipper of the centralized bureaucratic empire either lies about history or repeats nonsensical and incorrect slogans about it.  That's what Giridharadas does when he writes "First the slave South, now this."  Well, no, the "slave South" wasn't the first to secede.  The American colonists seceded from the British Empire to create the confederacy known as the United States.  America was born of secession.  The Declaration of Independence was a declaration of secession in which the individual states are called "free and independent."

The first Americans to plot secession after the Revolution were the New England Federalists, who hated Jefferson and his limited-government ideas; fiercely opposed the trade embargo that he imposed as president as an alternative to another war with England; and were especially opposed to the War of 1812.  New Englanders effectively seceded when their country was at war by not participating in the War of 1812.

Josiah Quincy was so upset over so many non-English immigrants that would be allowed into the country after the Louisiana Purchase that he declared that "the bonds of this Union are virtually dissolved" and that "it will be the right of all . . . to prepare definitely for a separation . . ."  That is, for secession. (See Daniel Wait Howe, Political History of Secession, p. 135).  Then came a decade-long crusade for New England secession, led by Massachusetts Senaor Timothy Pickering, who also served as secretary of state and secretary of war under George Washington.  After denouncing Jefferson's "depravity" in a letter to George Cabot, Pickering said that "the principles of our Revolution point to the remedy – a separation."

The New Englanders discussed (and threatened) secession for an entire decade, culminating in the 1814 Hartford Secession Convention.  At that convention they decided to try to take over the national government rather than secede from it, but there were few voices who did not believe that individual states had a right to secede. It was widely understood that the "free and independent" states were sovereign, hence were free to participate or not participate in the union.   Indeed, as a condition of ratifying the Constitution New York, Rhode Island and Virginia issued proclamations to the effect that they reserved the right to withdraw from the union at some future date if it ever became destructive of their liberties.  Since all states (including all of those that came after the original thirteen) have equal rights under the Constitution, it was assumed that not just those three states had a right of secession, but all of them did.

Lincoln literally threatened "invasion" and "bloodshed" in any state that attempted to secede in his first inaugural address, sounding a more like a twentieth century communist dictator than an American founder.  In sharp conrast,  in his first inaugural address Thomas Jefferson stated that "if there be any among us who wish to dissolve the Union or to change its republican form, let them stand undisturbed, as monuments of the safety with which error of opinion may be tolerated where reason is left free to combat it."

In a January 29 1804 letter to Dr. Joseph Priestly, Jefferson wrote that "whether we remain in one confederacy or form into Atlantic and Mississippi confederacies, I believe not very important to the happiness of either part.  Those of the western confederacy will be as much our children & descendants as those of the eastern . . . and did I now foresee a separation at some future day, yet I should feel the duty & the desire to promote the western interests as zealously as the eastern."

When asked by John C. Breckenridge what he thought of the New England secession movement, Jefferson responded on August 12, 1803 by saying that if there were a "separation," then "God bless them both, & keep them in the union if it be for their good, but separate them, if it be better."

There was a powerful secession movement in the "middle states" (New York, New Jersey, Maryland, Pennsylvania, Delaware) in the 1850s, as documented by William C. Wright in his book, The Secession Movement in the Middle Atlantic States.   All of this is why, on the eve of the War to Prevent Southern Independence, the great majority of Northern newspapers editorialized in favor of peaceful secession of the Southern states, as documented in Howard C. Perkins, Northern Editorials on Secession.  In general, the right of a state to secede "was not disputed" in most Northern newspapers in 1860-61, writes Perkins.  Typical of these newspaper editorials was one in the Cincinnati Daily press on November 21, 1860:  "We believe that the right of any member of this Confederacy to dissolve its political relations with the others and assume an independent position is absolute – that, in other words, if South Carolina wants to go out of the Union, she has the right to do so, and no party or power may justly say her nay."

On December 17, 1860 the New York Daily Tribune wrote that if tyranny and despotism justified the Revolution of 1776, then "we do not see why it would not justify the secession of Five Millions of Southrons from the Federal Union in 1861."  The New York Journal of Commerce warned on January 12, 1861, that by opposing secession Northerners would be changing the very nature of their government "from a voluntary one, in which the people are sovereigns, to a despotism where one part of the people are slaves."  This is not entirely correct, however; under a coerced union held together with the threat of Lincolnian "invasion" and "bloodshed," all the people are slaves to the state, not just "one part" of them.

All hail Balaji Srinivasan and the Silicon Valley libertarian secessionists!

http://www.lewrockwell.com/2013/10/thomas-dilorenzo/statists-gone-wild%E2%80%A8/

This Is White Privilege


October 31, 2013
This Is White Privilege
by cathyreisenwitz

Welp, that's a bullet dodged.

Contemplating a move to the District from my current home of Arlington, Virginia, I decided to see a house some of my (male) friends are moving into. I had to walk an alternate route from the NoMa metro due to construction. On the way, I asked a building security guard if he'd recommend moving to the address I provided. His answer was an unqualified no, between the soup kitchen and liquor store it was situated near.

I pressed on, ready to see for myself. On the way, I passed the D.C. Housing Authority and what appeared to be a homeless shelter. To find out, I Googled it. The first result was entitled, "Despite shootings and mice…" Then I saw the run-down rowhouse, which appeared unoccupied. I walked to the liquor store, exactly one rowhouse away, and then to the convenience store beside it. As I approach the cashier with a Diet 7UP I don't want, I notice a pack of dice hanging above his head, packaged like a toy.

I tell him I'm thinking of moving in next door, and ask his opinion. He tells me he's been robbed at gunpoint twice. He tells me the people who hang out in and outside his store are completely crazy. I'm missing most of the details because he's got a very thick accent. But the upshot is, "I would never let my wife or daughter live here. It may be $200 more to live somewhere else. But you need to."

Well then.

I'm so angry and sad right now. Why in the everloving fuck does anyone have to live like this? You best believe my yuppie white ass is going right back to fucking Virginia. Because, as I suspected, in the district I cannot afford to live both near a metro and where I am unlikely to be a victim of violent crime.

Jesus said the poor would always be among us. But you know what doesn't need to be among us? Licensure laws whose purpose is to prevent new employment in protected industries. Laws which require government-issued identification for legal employment. Housing policies which make housing artificially expensive. Laws against feeding hungry people without a permit. Minimum wage laws which increase unemployment. A war on drugs which incentivizes police to raid homes, confiscate cars and cash and shoot dogs while ignoring property and violent crime. A regressive payroll tax which takes 15% of every American's income no matter how low it is, but excludes income over $113,700. Farm subsidies which benefit big agribusiness while subsidizing the food most likely to sicken us. Laws requiring Americans put food in our gas tanks, raising the cost of feeding ourselves. Trade tariffs which increase the price of imported goods. Monetary inflation which erodes wealth and savings. And "solutions" like government housing, which concentrate crime and poverty, exacerbating intergeneration destitution.

So I'll be continuing to commute to Mordor from VA to fight all this shit. But I'll never be as well-funded as the myriad industries who benefit by keeping prices high while excluding people from mutually beneficial economic exchange. And That. Just. Sucks.

This post originally appeared at Thought Catalog.

http://sexandthestate.com/this-is-white-privilege/

Goldman Sachs Has Chosen Our Next President


31 October 2013
Goldman Sachs Has Chosen Our Next President
Thomas DiLorenzo

Drum roll please . . . . . . . . . . it's . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . Hillary Clinton!, whom Goldman just paid $400,000 for two speeches.

Is there a more money-grubbing woman anywhere in America?  There's no one more greedy and obsessed with money than a socialist ideologue.

The Deadenders


The Deadenders
John McCain wants us back in Iraq
by Justin Raimondo, November 01, 2013

While the rest of the nation has long since passed judgment on George W. Bush's invasion and occupation of Iraq, a few "deadenders" – as Donald Rumsfeld dubbed the Iraqi insurgents – persist in hailing this disaster as a "victory," albeit one that has been betrayed by the Obama administration. Even as the most ideological neoconservatives have, one by one, disavowed, apologized for, or otherwise sought to distance themselves from what retired Lt. Gen. William Odom called the "greatest strategic disaster in United States history," the two Republican Senators most identified with this catastrophe have continued to insist they were right. Now Gen. David Petraeus has joined the tag-team of Senators John McCain and Lindsey Graham and taken to the pages of Foreign Policy magazine to make the case – and, in doing so, have merely succeeded in underscoring why they were so wrong to begin with.

Gen. Petraeus's fifteen thousand word apologia – egregiously titled " How We Won In Iraq"! – is mostly jargon-filled gobbledygook combined with the tone of an Emmy Awards speech: in it, he seeks to paint a portrait of the so-called "surge" as a great victory, which somehow slipped from our fingers. The piece is a panegyric to himself interspersed with mentions of all the people he believes contributed to his great success. Ignoring all that nonsense, however, and focusing on the substantive parts, one is forced to conclude that the General lives in a parallel universe, one where up is down, right is left, and the "Arab Awakening" wasn't a case of massive bribery but a "surge of ideas" that simply swept away Al Qaeda-in-Iraq and led our forces to a glorious triumph.

Left unmentioned by Petraeus is the fact that we had to bribe the foot-soldiers of the so-called Arab Awakening, and that whatever gripes they had with Al Qaeda or other "extremist" forces had little or nothing to do with their actual motivations for cooperating with US forces. And while the General has no problem trumpeting his own genius in creating this Sunni auxiliary to the occupation forces, the Office for the Inspector General for Iraq Reconstruction could find no documentation supporting the General's self-congratulatory conclusions of "success." The Inspector General "conducted a review of 98 SOI [Sons of Iraq] project files and found little information on project accomplishments or successes." One lengthy section of the report is entitled "Sons of Iraq May Have Contributed to Reducing Violence, but Lack of Documentation Precludes Drawing Empirically Based Conclusions." So I guess we'll just have to take the General's word for it….

Petraeus puts much emphasis on how the "surge" wasn't just a military strategy but also a political tactic that involved giving the people of Iraq a real stake in supporting or at least tolerating the occupation. Reconstruction efforts, propaganda initiatives, and other "civil society" projects are touted – but once the US military departed, these supposed "success stories" evaporated like morning dew. The reason is because they were never real to begin with, but only the byproducts of the General's confirmation bias and the grandiose delusions of his neoconservative supporters in Washington.

The reality is that the "surge" was "successful" only insofar as the extra 20,000 US troops it required could continue to tamp down the insurgency by simply outgunning it. Neutralizing the insurgency's periphery by means of bribery no doubt had some effect, but putting thousands of Sunni fighters on the US government payroll indefinitely was never an option. Once the money dried up – along with the patience of the American people – these elements reverted to their old ways. Indeed, a good number of them are among the frontline fighters of the Islamist rebels in Syria – and back on Uncle Sam's payroll.

While Petraeus is mainly concerned with salvaging what is left of his reputation, Sen. McCain is more concerned with somehow proving the Iraq war was not only a great victory, but that US troops should still be in Iraq. As unlikely – indeed, crazy – as this sounds, it highlights how committed McCain (and Graham) are to the wrongheaded notions of the Bush era, which deluded our political class into believing they could conquer, occupy, and transform a country thousands of miles away from our shores, turning it into the Middle Eastern equivalent of Kansas.

McCain's polemic takes up where Petraeus leaves off. While the General never says he wants US troops back in Iraq, and only implicitly criticizes the Obama administration for leaving, the Senate's most consistent Mad Bomber and his sidekick openly declare we should never have left. We "lost" Iraq, says McCain-Graham, and the country is gong to pieces because the Obama administration didn't negotiate an agreement to keep at least 15,000 US troops in the country:

"Nowhere was the Obama administration's failure more pronounced than during the debate over whether to maintain a limited number of U.S. troops in Iraq beyond the 2011 expiration of the 2008 Status of Forces Agreement (SOFA) – a debate in which we were actively involved. Here, too, the administration is quick to lay blame on others for the fact that they tried, and failed, to keep a limited presence of troops in Iraq. They have blamed the Bush administration, of course, for mandating the withdrawal in the 2008 SOFA. This does not ring true, however, because as former Secretary of State Condoleezza Rice has made clear, the plan all along was to renegotiate the agreement to allow for a continued presence of US forces in Iraq. 'Everybody believed,' she said in 2011, 'it would be better if there was some kind of residual force.'"

Everybody, that is, but the Iraqis. The Americans thought any government that came out of the occupation would be pro-American: they were wrong. The government of Prime Minister Nouri al-Maliki was and is pro-Iranian, sectarian Shi'ite, and at the time contained elements unalterably opposed to a US military presence of any size. Without the support of ultra-nationalist Muqtada al-Sadr and his fellow Sadrists in the Iraqi parliament, the Maliki government would have fallen.

Remember all the triumphalist guff we had to endure when the Iraqi elections were held? The neocon blogosphere was awash with images of ink-stained fingers held aloft, and the moment was hailed by Bush as a "resounding success," while his amen corner in the Anglo-American media agreed. "The world is hearing the voice of freedom from the center of the Middle East," Bush bloviated. "In great numbers, and under great risk, Iraqis have shown their commitment to democracy." Every network television station broadcast the news, showing Iraqis patiently standing in line to vote and proudly displaying their stained fingers. The neocon army to "liberate" the Middle East was on the march, and the few naysayers were ignored and/or mocked.

As I repeatedly and insistently pointed out at the time, however, the results of those elections did not bode well for the neocon dream of a "democratic" Iraq allied with Washington. The megalomaniacs in charge of the Occupation Authority thought they could get away with instituting a system of "caucus" elections that could be easily manipulated to ensure a "pro-American" result: those were the days when embezzler, " hero in error" (and Iranian agent) Ahmed Chalabi was being touted by Danielle Pletka and the gang over at the American Enterprise Institute as the future leader of a "democratic" Iraq.

But Chalabi, who was on the US payroll, had no support inside Iraq, and his "Iraqi National Congress" was simply the creation of Washington, which had funded the INC in return for the outrageous lies that passed for "intelligence" on Iraq's alleged "weapons of mass destruction."

Aside from that little problem, there was the big problem of the Grand Ayatollah Ali al-Sistani, the powerful leader of Iraq's majority Shi'ite sect, who was demanding direct elections. When the Occupation Authority tried to go ahead with the "caucus" plan anyway, Sistani called his followers out into the streets and the result was pandemonium. Forced to retreat, the Bush administration had no choice but to accede to the Ayatollah's demand – or else face the prospect of a really massive rebellion that would make the Sunni insurgency seem like a Sunday school picnic.

It was inevitable that if truly democratic elections were held in Iraq the result was not going to be to Washington's liking, and that is precisely what occurred. McCain doesn't say it in so many words, but he would have liked to have seen Maliki simply issue an executive order approving the Status of Forces Agreement – with the boilerplate stipulation, encoded in every SOFA where US forces are stationed, immunizing American soldiers from prosecution by local courts. That provision was a deal-breaker for the Iraqi parliament, and particularly for Maliki's own party and his coalition partners.

The legal immunity provision is the insignia of American hegemony in the countries where we have bases and "interests." By limiting the sovereignty of the empire's provinces in this way, and on their own territory, Washington formalizes their subjugation in a "legal" sense. Maliki did not and could not agree to this – not without provoking a head on collision between the majority Shi'ites and the occupying forces.

If the " COINdinista" strategy advocated by Petraeus had any validity, we should have won at least enough hearts and minds in Iraq to make the presence of some 15,000 to 26,000 "residual" US troops somewhat palatable. As it was, not a single Iraqi party with parliamentary representation supported continuing the SOFA. In the end, even the 3,000 " trainers" who were supposed to stay on were asked to leave – a far cry indeed from the "they'll greet us with rose petals" scenario projected by the armchair warriors over at Neocon Central.

McCain blames the Obama administration for the failure of the SOFA negotiations, but is vague about what, specifically, US officials should have done short of forcing the Iraqis to comply with our demands and simply refusing to leave.

Iraq is in chaos today for a simple reason: we blasted the Iraqi Humpty-Dumpty to bits and there's no putting it back together again. McCain and Graham complain that the Sunnis are up in arms, Al Qaeda is back, and the Kurds are growing restive – and yet it was the "two amigos" who were loudest in their support of a war that destroyed the only force that had kept the country together since the 1960s.

While "what if" is, properly speaking, a category of fiction, it's useful in this case to construct a likely alternative history. What if George W. Bush had rejected the advice of his neoconservative advisors and "Operation Iraqi Freedom" never happened? Given that the "Arab Spring" was already in the cards, and the conditions prevailing in secular dictatorships like Egypt, Libya, and Tunisia were replicated in Ba'athist Iraq, Saddam's regime would likely have fallen to the same turmoil that engulfed Hosni Mubarak and Qadaffi. If only we had waited, we would've seen Saddam's end in the by and by.

While this may not have resulted in a political system up to the standards of the National Endowment for Democracy and "Freedom House," one can hardly imagine it would have been worse than what we see in Iraq today.

The very idea that we have "lost" Iraq is indicative of the Senators' mindset, and the whole reason why the invasion will go down in history along with the Vietnam war as an unmitigated disaster for the United States: Iraq was never ours to begin with, since it is, you know, a foreign country. We have no more "lost" Iraq than we "lost" Mexico after withdrawing from that country in the aftermath of the Mexican-American war.

Like Teddy Roosevelt, whom he clearly patterns himself after, McCain is an out-and-out advocate of imperialism: Teddy wanted to annex Cuba, and the Philippines. McCain and Graham clothe their expansionist agenda in "democratic" raiment, but the idea is the same: he wishes US troops were still in Iraq, as they would be in Syria if he'd had his way there.

It was Max Boot, one of many neocon Napoleons, who wrote a piece for the Weekly Standard openly making " The Case for American Empire," and the McCain-Graham duo have been its biggest advocates. Yet they are completely isolated, at this point, even in their own party – or, I might say, especially in their own party, where the dreaded "isolationists " (i.e. anti-interventionists who reflect the views of the American people) are in the ascendant.

I don't know what the McCain-Graham-Petraeus triumvirate is trying to accomplish with their revisionist history project, beyond scoring some points off the Obama administration: perhaps there's some ass-covering involved, too. Because the only occasion we'll see US troops back in Iraq in any numbers is in the event of war with Iran, in which case what Petraeus insists on calling the Land of the Two Rivers will be a big part of the battlefield.

This is an outcome McCain and Graham would dearly love to see, but they are swimming against the political tides. Because it wasn't just the resistance on the part of the Iraqis that made the continued presence of US troops in Iraq untenable – by the time the SOFA negotiations were going full swing, the American people were done with Iraq – and with the entire region. If the Obama administration had kept our troops there, they would have faced an open rebellion in Congress, in their own party, and in the country at large. Just like Maliki, they faced a choice: either get US troops out of there, or else risk their own political legitimacy.

McCain still hasn't learned the lesson of the Syrian debate, when the country rose up and demanded that President Obama abandon his plans to intervene in Syria's civil war. The American people don't want an empire – they want out of the "world leadership" business. They don't want another Teddy Roosevelt – they want someone like Dwight Eisenhower, who ended the Korean war, cut the military budget, and warned against what he called the " military-industrial complex." In the early years of this decade, it wasn't so clear that the McCains and Grahams of this world were and are the voice of that Complex: today, however, they've quite clearly been unmasked. Their days as forces to be reckoned with have already passed. They just don't know it yet.

http://original.antiwar.com/justin/2013/10/31/the-deadenders/

Congressionally Duped Americans


Congressionally Duped Americans
Walter E. Williams

Last week's column, "Is There a Way Out?", generated quite a few responses, some a bit angry. Some people were offended by my reference to Social Security and Medicare as entitlements or handouts. They said that they worked for 45 years and paid into Social Security and Medicare and how dare I refer to the money they now receive as an entitlement. These people have been duped by Congress and shouldn't be held totally accountable for such a belief. Let's examine the plethora of congressional Social Security lies. I'll leave the Medicare lies for another column.

The Social Security pamphlet of 1936 read, "Beginning November 24, 1936, the United States Government will set up a Social Security account for you. ... The checks will come to you as a right" ( http://tinyurl.com/maskyul). Therefore, Americans have been led to believe that Social Security is like a retirement account and money placed in it is their property. The fact of the matter belies that belief.

A year after the Social Security Act's passage, it was challenged in the U.S. Supreme Court, in Helvering v. Davis. The court held that Social Security is not an insurance program, saying, "The proceeds of both employee and employer taxes are to be paid into the Treasury like any other internal revenue generally, and are not earmarked in any way." In a 1960 case, Flemming v. Nestor, the Supreme Court held, "To engraft upon the Social Security system a concept of 'accrued property rights' would deprive it of the flexibility and boldness in adjustment to ever-changing conditions which it demands."

Decades after Americans had been duped into thinking that the money taken from them was theirs, the Social Security Administration belatedly ­ and very quietly ­ tried to clean up its history of deception. Its website explains, "Entitlement to Social Security benefits is not (a) contractual right." It adds: "There has been a temptation throughout the program's history for some people to suppose that their FICA payroll taxes entitle them to a benefit in a legal, contractual sense.

... Congress clearly had no such limitation in mind when crafting the law" ( http://tinyurl.com/49p8fl2). The Social Security Administration failed to mention that it was the SSA itself, along with Congress, that created the lie that "the checks will come to you as a right."

Here's my question to those who protest that their Social Security checks are not an entitlement or handouts: Seeing as Congress has not "set up a Social Security account for you" containing your Social Security and Medicare "contributions," where does the money you receive come from? I promise you it's neither Santa Claus nor the tooth fairy. The only way Congress can send checks to Social Security and Medicare recipients is to take the earnings of a person currently in the workforce [] . The way Congress conceals its Ponzi scheme is to dupe Social Security and Medicare recipients into thinking that it's their money that is put away and invested. Therefore, Social Security recipients want their monthly check and are oblivious about who has to pay and the pending economic calamity that awaits future generations because of the federal government's $100 trillion-plus unfunded liability, of which Social Security and Medicare are the major parts.

Pointing to the congressional lies and future economic chaos is not the same as calling for a cessation of checks going out to recipients. Instead, it's a call [] for the recognition that we've made a mistake that needs to be corrected while there's time to avoid a calamity. It's also a call for us to recognize that we all share in the blame and hence the burden to make it right. Politicians have little interest in doing something about an economic calamity that will happen in 2030 or 2040; they only care about the next election. Older Americans, who own most of the political clout, must lead the fight to get Congress to do something about entitlement programs. Of course, the alternative is continued belief in the Social Security and Medicare myth and the heck with future generations.

http://www.creators.com/opinion/walter-williams/congressionally-duped-americans.html

Re: Why Football Has Become So Militarized

I honestly didn't read it, i do not watch football or any sports, so it had absolutely no interest for me!!!


On Sun, Nov 10, 2013 at 12:19 PM, Keith In Tampa <keithintampa@gmail.com> wrote:
I almost posted one of my "Moonbat" pictures here, but thought better of it.  Am I the only one that was offended by this column by Delorenzio?   I mean, it's not the first time that MJ has posted some ridiculous asinine comment from a far left extremist parading around as a "Libertarian";  but just the whole concept of this one today is so out of line and offensive,  I was just curious if I am the only one that sees this.....
 
 


On Sat, Nov 9, 2013 at 2:49 PM, MJ <michaelj@america.net> wrote:

Why Football Has Become So Militarized
Thomas DiLorenzo

Have you ever wondered why it is that it is impossible to watch an NFL football game, and many college football games, without witnessing tens of thousands of people jumping up out of their seats at lightning speed to sing an anthem to statism; looking at a gigantic American flag that covers the entire football field; seeing fighter jets flying over the stadium; scores of old, dumpy-looking guys in camouflage walking around playing army and carrying flags; etc., etc.  The reason for all of this fascist-style militarism, as these BBC video documentaries explain, is that the U.S. government aspires to imitate the regimes of Hitler, Mussolini, and Franco in terms of how they used sports to glorify the state and statism.  (You might also be interested in a book entitled Football and Fascism by Simon Martin).

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Re: Why Football Has Become So Militarized


So is it because of ARMISTICE Day ... or merely a general embrace of jingoistic nationalism? The latter puts you in that former Trotskyite column that has swept much of the Republican/Conservative group.
Americans have been thoroughly conditioned toward what they were purportedly 'fighting' for the past almost Century. It 'hurts' for them to see/admit.

The Churches are BIG graven image/idol worshippers in this regard.

Regard$,
--MJ

"Against individualism, the Fascist conception is for the State; and it is for the individual in so far as he coincides with the State, which is the conscience and universal will of man in his historical existence. It is opposed to classical Liberalism." --Mussolini



At 12:19 PM 11/10/2013, you wrote:
I almost posted one of my "Moonbat" pictures here, but thought better of it.  Am I the only one that was offended by this column by Delorenzio?   I mean, it's not the first time that MJ has posted some ridiculous asinine comment from a far left extremist parading around as a "Libertarian";  but just the whole concept of this one today is so out of line and offensive,  I was just curious if I am the only one that sees this.....
 
 


On Sat, Nov 9, 2013 at 2:49 PM, MJ <michaelj@america.net> wrote:

Why Football Has Become So Militarized
Thomas DiLorenzo

Have you ever wondered why it is that it is impossible to watch an NFL football game, and many college football games, without witnessing tens of thousands of people jumping up out of their seats at lightning speed to sing an anthem to statism; looking at a gigantic American flag that covers the entire football field; seeing fighter jets flying over the stadium; scores of old, dumpy-looking guys in camouflage walking around playing army and carrying flags; etc., etc.  The reason for all of this fascist-style militarism, as these BBC video documentaries explain, is that the U.S. government aspires to imitate the regimes of Hitler, Mussolini, and Franco in terms of how they used sports to glorify the state and statism.  (You might also be interested in a book entitled Football and Fascism by Simon Martin).

Re: Why Football Has Become So Militarized

I almost posted one of my "Moonbat" pictures here, but thought better of it.  Am I the only one that was offended by this column by Delorenzio?   I mean, it's not the first time that MJ has posted some ridiculous asinine comment from a far left extremist parading around as a "Libertarian";  but just the whole concept of this one today is so out of line and offensive,  I was just curious if I am the only one that sees this.....
 
 


On Sat, Nov 9, 2013 at 2:49 PM, MJ <michaelj@america.net> wrote:

Why Football Has Become So Militarized
Thomas DiLorenzo

Have you ever wondered why it is that it is impossible to watch an NFL football game, and many college football games, without witnessing tens of thousands of people jumping up out of their seats at lightning speed to sing an anthem to statism; looking at a gigantic American flag that covers the entire football field; seeing fighter jets flying over the stadium; scores of old, dumpy-looking guys in camouflage walking around playing army and carrying flags; etc., etc.  The reason for all of this fascist-style militarism, as these BBC video documentaries explain, is that the U.S. government aspires to imitate the regimes of Hitler, Mussolini, and Franco in terms of how they used sports to glorify the state and statism.  (You might also be interested in a book entitled Football and Fascism by Simon Martin).

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Fwd: How Embassy Eavesdropping Works








http://militarywritersassociation.wordpress.com/2013/10/28/schroeder-military-intelligence-daily-how-embassy-eavesdropping-works/?blogsub=confirming#blog_subscription-2

 

How Embassy Eavesdropping Works

Posted: October 28, 2013

Secret US espionage activity against Germany, from Germany and  revealed this week by Der Spiegel has added new evidence to European concerns about the interception of the phones of the Germany's Chancellor Merkel and other world leaders.    Duncan was a consultant to Der Spiegel for the inquiry and identified the listening "windows" shown on the front cover.

Similar, top secret listening installations, protected from scrutiny by diplomatic immunity are used to conduct massive electronic listening, usually from the top floors of US embassies.  One is in Berlin.  Others are located in European capitals from Stockholm to Athens..

Duncan filmed inside a similar decommissioned British surveillance facility using the same techniques as the US and UK currently use to spy in Europe's capital cities.

His investigations led to a 1999 television expose about how the UK had secretly intercepted and analysed all the international communications of the Irish Republic, an EU member.  GCHQ's activities were later found to be unlawful by the European Court of Human Rights.

How embassy eavesdropping works

The key visible feature of most embassy and diplomatic sites that give away their secret spying missions are large windowless areas on top floors, and also sheds or hangers on the roof which are designed to look as though they might contain lift or air conditioning apparatus. 

At the US Embassy in Berlin, the lighter colored panels on the south west, north west and northeast corners of the rooftop surveillance facility are dielectric "radio windows" which allow all types of radio signals to reach collection and analysis equipment on the roof and floor directly below.

The "radio window" panels are made of special material which does not conduct electricity.   That is so weak radio signals coming in from all corners of the city are not diminished (attenuated) as they pass into the building and reach the sigint (signals intelligence) antennae.

Usually, dielectric window panels for signals intelligence work are made of plastic or fiberglass.   They are often shaped and colored to look as though they are a normal part of the building, or are special architectural features.

Hidden behind the panels are a range of special monitoring antenna, dishes or arrays which collect every type of commercial and civil mobile, and government communications, including internet traffic, on all available wavelengths.

Rooftop "sheds" like in Berlin can be seen on dozens of US embassies in Europe and around the world, except in "Five Eyes" allied countries such as the UK.  Apart from the "collection" sheds, large processing areas are needed to analyse and transmit the result of interception to the global surveillance network. 

Windowless top floors, such on the south wing of the Berlin embassy provide "SCIFs" – Secure Compartmented Intelligence Facilities – which are needed to prevent any radio signals from the interception and analysis equipment themselves leaking out.    The processing operators and equipment for the "Special Collection Service" are sited in these rooms.

The largest and most obvious US diplomatic surveillance facility in Europe is on the roof of the Geneva consulate, overlooking the United Nations.    The Berlin eavesdropping facility is one of the largest, comparable in size to those in sensitive Middle East locations such as Yemen or Cyprus. 

When the former GCHQ surveillance installation in Capenhurst in northern England was retired from service and put up for sale (TV link), it was possible to inspect inside and see what the embassy surveillance center might look like.

The 150 ft (50 meter  tower had been placed directly between two British Telecom microwave radio towers carrying telephone traffic. It was the ideal place to discreetly intercept international telephone calls of the Irish government, businessmen and also those of suspected of involvement with IRA terrorism.

The hi-tech tower included eight floors of advanced electronic equipment and three floors of aerial galleries.  These were used to extract and sort the thousands of communications passing through every hour.

 



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Fwd: [New post] Pentagon training manual says America is racist and white males have unfair advantage





Dr. Eowyn posted: "A training manual approved by the Pentagon and obtained by FoxNews' Todd Starnes, warns about a so-called White Male Club in a racist America, and asserts that a white, heterosexual, Christian man has unfair advantages in the U.S. military over other sold"
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New post on Fellowship of the Minds

Pentagon training manual says America is racist and white males have unfair advantage

by Dr. Eowyn

blacks can't be racistA training manual approved by the Pentagon and obtained by FoxNews' Todd Starnes, warns about a so-called White Male Club in a racist America, and asserts that a white, heterosexual, Christian man has unfair advantages in the U.S. military over other soldiers -- as they do in the larger society.

"The unfair economic advantages and disadvantages created long ago by institutions for whites, males, Christians, etc., still affect socioeconomic privilege today," the manual warns, ignoring the fact that the allegedly American people had elected and re-elected a black man as president and commander-in-chief.

The manual also instructs troops to "support the leadership of people of color. Do this consistently, but not uncritically."

DEOMI

The 637-page manual, Equal Opportunity Advisor Student Guide, was put together by the Pentagon's Defense Equal Opportunity Management Institute (DEOMI) as a textbook to train the U.S. military's Equal Opportunity (EO) officers during a three month DEOMI course taught at Patrick Air Force Base in Florida. Those EO officers then disseminate their training throughout the military by leading Equal Opportunity briefings on every U.S. military installation.

The subject of alleged white privilege is in a 20-page section of the manual titled, "Power and Privilege." Here are some excerpts from that section: 

"Whites are the empowered group. White males represent the haves as compared to the have-nots."

"Simply put, a healthy, white, heterosexual, Christian male receives many unearned advantages of social privilege, whereas a black, homosexual, atheist female in poor health receives many unearned disadvantages of social privilege."

"In spite of slave insurrections, civil war, the 13th, 14th, and 15th amendments, the women's suffrage movement leading to the 19th amendment, the civil rights movement, urban rebellions and the contemporary feminist movement, the club persists."

"Today some white people may use the tactic of denial when they say, 'It's a level playing field; this is a land of equal opportunity.' [That is not true.] Assume racism is everywhere, every day."

FoxNews' Todd Starnes obtained a copy of the manual from an Equal Opportunity officer who was disturbed by the course content and furious over the DEOMI's reliance on the bigoted Southern Poverty Law Center (SPLC) for information on "extremist" groups.The EO instructor, who asked not to identified because he fears reprisals, told Starnes, "I'm participating in teaching things that are not true. I should not be in a position to do that. It violates Constitutional principles, but it also violates my conscience. And I'm not going to do it – not going to do it."

Starnes contacted the Pentagon as well as the DEOMI multiple times for comment on this story, but so far they have not responded to his requests.

DEOMI opened in 1971 in response to the civil rights movement. It's responsible for Equal Opportunity/Equal Employment Opportunity education and training for military active duty and reservists, according to its website.

A DEOMI training guide used by the Air Force lists the SPLC as a resource for information on hate groups and references the group several times. Considered as hate groups were Christian organizations such as the American Family Association and Family Research Council, immigration reform groups such as the Federation for American Immigration Reform and Atlas Shrugs, run by Pamela Geller and monitoring global jihadist activity.

You can read a 20-page excerpt from the EOAC training manual here.

Sources: FoxNews; Investor's Business Daily editorial

H/t FOTM's Miss May

~Eowyn

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Fwd: [New post] Socialism Brought Home





Harold posted: "Martin Armstrong11/6/2013Source ..... An economics professor at a local college made a statement that he had never failed a single student before, but had recently failed an entire class. That class had insisted that Obama's socialism worked and that no o"
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New post on ACGR's "News with Attitude"

Socialism Brought Home

by Harold

Martin Armstrong 11/6/2013 Source ..... An economics professor at a local college made a statement that he had never failed a single student before, but had recently failed an entire class. That class had insisted that Obama's socialism worked and that no one would be poor and no one would be rich, a great equalizer. […]

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