"The essence of Government is power; and power, lodged as it must be in human hands, will ever be liable to abuse." -- James Madison - (1751-1836)

"We are fast approaching the stage of the ultimate inversion: the stage where the government is free to do anything it pleases, while the citizens may act only by permission; which is the stage of the darkest periods of human history, the stage of rule by brute force. " :
Ayn Rand in "The Nature of Government"

"Throughout history there have been tyrants and murderers. And for a while they seem invincible, but always they fall. Always."-Mahatma Gandhi

Science may have found a cure for most evils; but it has found no remedy for the worst of them all -- the apathy of human beings: Helen Keller

The notion that a radical is one who hates his country is naive and usually idiotic. He is , more likely, one who likes his country more than the rest of us, and is thus more disturbed than the rest of us when he sees it debauched. He is not a bad citizen turning to crime ; he is a good citizen driven to despair.--H.L Mencken

"When even one American-who has done nothing wrong-is forced by fear to shut his mind and close his mouth-then all Americans are in peril" Harry S. Truman

"The power of the Executive to cast a man into prison without formulating any charge known to the law, and particularly to deny him the judgment of his peers, is in the highest degree odious and is the foundation of all totalitarian government whether Nazi or Communist."- Winston Churchill, Nov. 21, 1943

"When you see that in order to produce, you need to obtain permission from men who produce nothing - when you see that money is flowing to those who deal, not in goods, but in favors - when you see that men get richer by graft and by pull than by work, and your laws don't protect you against them, but protect them against you - when you see corruption being rewarded and honesty becoming a self-sacrifice - you may know that your society is doomed: Ayn Rand - (1905-1982) Author - Source: Atlas Shrugged, Francisco's "Money Speech"

"Loss of freedom seldom happens overnight. Oppression doesn't stand on the doorstep with toothbrush moustache and swastika armband -- it creeps up insidiously...step by step, and all of a sudden the unfortunate citizen realizes that it is gone." ~ Baron Lane

U.S. Constitution - R.I.P.

Thursday, September 25, 2008

Another Day, Another Bank Failure

JPMorgan Chase buys Washington Mutual

Washington Mutual Bank, the country's largest savings and loan, was seized late today by federal regulators and immediately sold to JPMorgan Chase & Co., the New York banking giant that has long coveted the thrift's California and Florida branches.

With assets of $307 billion and deposits of $188 billion, Washington Mutual is the largest bank to fail in U.S. history.

And just look at the fine analytical minds that are in charge of solving the crisis...

The Paulson Plan, Bad News For The Bailout

In fact, some of the most basic details, including the $700 billion figure Treasury would use to buy up bad debt, are fuzzy. "It's not based on any particular data point," a Treasury spokeswoman told Forbes.com Tuesday. "We just wanted to choose a really large number."

Inspires confidence, doesn't it? Meanwhile the public is treated to patronizing statements that everything will be ok, the fundamental economy is strong. They say that even while admitting that they're making it up as they go along. Incredible.

Tuesday, September 23, 2008

Psychologists Reject the Dark Side: American Psychological Association Members Reject Participation in Bush Detention Centers

The movement against U.S. torture experienced a significant victory last week. The members of the American Psychological Association [APA] rejected the policies of their leadership, policies that abetted the Bush administration’s program of torture and detainee abuse. By a vote of 59%, the members passed a referendum stating that APA members may not work in U.S. detention centers that are outside of or in violation of international law or the U.S. Constitution “unless they are working directly for the persons being detained or for an independent third party working to protect human rights.” Passage of this referendum is a significant milestone in a years long effort by activist psychologists to change policies that encouraged participation in detainee interrogations because psychologists, the APA leadership claimed, helped keep those interrogations “safe, legal, and ethical.”


Monday, September 22, 2008

Keiser: US dollar "backed by bananas"

Press TV interviewed Paris-based financial analyst Max Keiser on the US financial meltdown on September 20. What follows are his free-wheeling comments on the US government bailout of Wall Street and the potential consequences for America.

"To pay for all this insanity from Hank Paulson, they have two options. They can either raise taxes or they can inflate the money supply. They can destroy these things US dollars [waves a dollar bill at the camera]. Dollars 30 years ago used to be backed by this stuff - gold [waves a gold coin at the camera]. Now thanks to Hank Paulson and Ben Bernanke US dollars are backed by these - bananas [waves a banana at the camera]. They're absolutely worthless. Anyone buying US dollars today is going to lose money."

"For the average American, this is what they will experience. The price of food and oil are going to skyrocket due to hyperinflation. The only way they can possibly pay for all these bailouts is to inflate the money supply. This means hyperinflation in America like you had in Germany in the 1920s. This is what the average American will experience: destitution, poverty, social unrest due to flagrant bank mismanagement - and it could have been avoided.
But unfortunately the banks in the USA are run by greedy, insane private marketeers and this is the result."

A rather straight forward assessment of our current situation...And, he's got lot's more interesting things to say...the link to the rest of the article is in the title.

Martial Law in the Making

Brigade homeland tours start Oct. 1

3rd Infantry’s 1st BCT trains for a new dwell-time mission. Helping ‘people at home’ may become a permanent part of the active Army

The 3rd Infantry Division’s 1st Brigade Combat Team has spent 35 of the last 60 months in Iraq patrolling in full battle rattle, helping restore essential services and escorting supply convoys.

Now they’re training for the same mission — with a twist — at home.

Beginning Oct. 1 for 12 months, the 1st BCT will be under the day-to-day control of U.S. Army North, the Army service component of Northern Command, as an on-call federal response force for natural or man made emergencies and disasters, including terrorist attacks.

In the meantime, they’ll learn new skills, use some of the ones they acquired in the war zone and more than likely will not be shot at while doing any of it.

They may be called upon to help with civil unrest and crowd control or to deal with potentially horrific scenarios such as massive poisoning and chaos in response to a chemical, biological, radiological, nuclear or high-yield explosive, or CBRNE, attack.

Ominous. I wonder, will we even have an election? The current economic crisis would surely make as good of an excuse as any for the Bushco regime to take advantage of those "emergency powers"....Ah well, at least the guys will get to use some of those skills they learned in the war zone on the folks back home...regardless of that old fashioned American delusion that the people have Constitutional rights.

Economic Desperation Notes of the Day

Grasping at Straws

21/09/08 "ICH" -- - On Friday morning, Senator Christopher Dodd, the head of the Senate Banking Committee, was interviewed on ABC's “Good Morning America.” Dodd revealed that just hours earlier at an emergency meeting convened by Secretary of the Treasury Henry Paulson and Federal Reserve chairman Ben Bernanke, lawmakers were told that "We’re literally maybe days away from a complete meltdown of our financial system.” Dodd added somberly, that in his three decades of serving in public office, he had "never heard language like this.”

The system is at the breaking point, and despite Wall Street's elation from the proposed $1 trillion dollar bailout to remove toxic mortgage-backed debt from banks balance sheets, the market is still correcting in what has become a vicious downward cycle. This cycle will persist until the bad debts are accounted for and written off for or until the exhausted dollar-system collapses altogether. Either way, the volatility and violent dislocations will continue for the foreseeable future.

Government To Steal $15,000 From Every American Household To Bailout Big Banks and Lenders

If someone came into your home and held you at gunpoint and forced you to fork over $15 thousand dollars in cash (provided, of course, you kept such a large amount at home), you’d call the cops as soon as you could, wouldn’t you? In fact, if you had a gun at home, you might even try and shoot the bastards before they could get away with your money. But what happens when it is the U.S. government that is about to break into your house and make off with that much money? Whom do you call? Batman? And yet, that is exactly how much money, thus far, the current round of government bailouts of big financial institutions is costing American households.

The Cost of the Bailout: $2,000 Per Person - WashingtonWatch.com

Bailout legislation that may sail through Congress this week will cost about $6,500 per U.S. family, a little over $2,000 per person, according to an estimate published on the WashingtonWatch.com blog.

Well, things are moving right along lately aren't they? The economy is on its way to an incredible collapse. I saw this coming, but I was hoping for a bit more time to prepare. But I guess my bunch is better prepared than most. How horrible it will be for the majority of people who have been taken totally by surprise. I hate to think of it, hungry children and desperate families. And the perpetrators of this financial mess made trillions over the years, yet they will be bailed out by the tax payer and never be held accountable for the destruction of so many lives.

Tuesday, September 16, 2008

"Financial Storm of the Century, and the Levees are Breaking"

Roubini: You Should Worry About Deposits

With the "financial storm of the century" hitting financial institutions, many Americans are worried about the safety of their bank deposits. While the FDIC insures individual accounts up to $100,000, the reaction to IndyMac's failure this summer -- lines outside retail branches -- shows Americans have limited faith in the Federal Deposit Insurance Corp., which guarantees individual accounts up to $100,000.

But Americans are justified to be worried, says Nouriel Roubini, of NYU's Stern School and RGE Monitor, who notes there is already a "slow-motion run on retail banks" occurring nationwide.That "run" could accelerate as people realize the FDIC fund has about $50 billion to "insure" about $1 trillion in assets at the nation's financial institutions, says Roubini. "They're going to run out of money" unless Congress acts soon to recapitalize the FDIC.

Be sure to check out the video on the page and hear what this man has to say. The "Financial Storm of the Century, and the levees are breaking".....and where exactly is Congress going to get the money to recapitilize the FDIC? The government is beyond bankrupt, it is trillions in debt, making us more and more dependent on foreign governments, the very ones we continue to antagonize...Russia, China, and the Gulf states....bright "leadership" in this once great country..what a shame. And, through it all, Paulson is still busy reassuring the sheeple that everything is under control...have faith in our economy...with a straight face even...what a joke. Only the beginning folks...hold on to your hats, the worst of storm is yet to come.

Monday, September 15, 2008

The Dreaded D Word Hits the Mainstream Media

From CNBC:

Bailouts Will Push US into Depression

The end result of the global economic slowdown may be the U.S. announcing national bankruptcy as the government cannot afford the bailouts that it promised and the market will not bail out the government, Martin Hennecke, senior manager of private clients at Tyche, told CNBC on Thursday.

"We expect a depression in the United States. We expect a depression, very possibly, also in Europe," Hennecke said on "Worldwide Exchange."

Of course, many other sources have been predicting another US depression for quite some time, but the mainstream media has been busy aping the propaganda of the Chimp in Charge, telling Americans that our current problems are but a temporary blip in our otherwise "solid" economy. Imagine how ominous things must be if the mainstream is finally admitting that there is real trouble on the horizon.

Tuesday, September 2, 2008

Ultimate Irony

Just as I hit the "Publish" button on the previous post, This popped into my email inbox , from my brother.........

Saint Paul to Welcome Return of Declaration of Independence
During Convention

City Hall/County Courthouse to Display Copy of Declaration
SAINT PAUL – As part of the celebrations surrounding the Republican National Convention in
September, an original printing of the Declaration of Independence will return to Saint Paul for
public viewing Sept. 2-4 at Saint Paul City Hall/Ramsey County Courthouse.
“I am happy to partner with Secretary of State Mark Ritchie to bring the Declaration of
Independence back to Saint Paul,” Mayor Coleman said. “A national political party convention is
about so much more than just the nomination of a candidate. It is a celebration of democracy and
American civic pride, and having the Declaration of Independence on public display provides
another dimension for residents and visitors to participate and enjoy all that a convention brings
with it.”
“I am thrilled that Mayor Coleman and county officials are making this possible for Minnesota,”
said Secretary of State Ritchie, whose office is orchestrating the display. “The Declaration of
Independence represents the origins of the very idea of democracy, and bringing it to Minnesota
during a time when a presidential candidate will be nominated will give residents and visitors a
chance to see the very birth certificate of our nation.”

I wonder if the hundreds of journalists and protesters who have been pepper sprayed, tear gassed, beaten, and "detained" for exercising their constitutional rights will be allowed to take a peek at
the "origins of the very idea of democracy" when the gestapo releases them....quaint little artifact these days, isn't it?

Monday, September 1, 2008

Targeting the Free Press

Police Seize Journalists Notes About RNC Protest Plans

National Lawyers Guild reports..... A trio of journalists who have a track record of documenting police abuse at political conventions were stopped and searched during the early morning hours in Minneapolis. Police took their video equipment, cell phones, computer, hard drive and notes about protests planned for next week's Republican National Convention. They took away their ability to report.

RNC Raids Have Been Targeting Video Activists

"St. Paul is a free country!" cried a resident of Iglehart Avenue, a neighborhood street in St. Paul, Minn., as she watched her next-door neighbor's house being overtaken by police officers on Saturday afternoon. Just one in a series of house raids over a 24-hour period the weekend before the Republican National Convention, St. Paul police surrounded the private home with weapons drawn, detaining people in the backyard, while journalists, activists and neighbors -- including several children -- looked on.

Their crime? None whatsoever. No one was trespassing or engaging in acts of civil disobedience. Instead, members of I-Witness Video, a New York-based media watchdog group that records police activity in order to protect civil liberties, were holding an organizing meeting at 949 Iglehart, the home of St. Paul resident Mike Whalen, when armed police officers arrived in the early afternoon and ordered their surrender.

Apparently, independent journalists, the last bastion of the free press, are frowned upon in fascist Amerika, only the corporate lapdog press need apply to cover the RNC. The gestapo seems to be actively seeking out journalists who don't publish the official propaganda, detaining them without cause, stealing their equipment and notes, assaulting and intimidating them. Breaking heads and taking names they are...Isn't this type of tyranny exactly why Freedom of the Press is guaranteed by the Constitution? Oh and, by the way, the Declaration of Independence is quite clear on our obligations in just this sort of situation..."But when a long train of abuses and usurpations, pursuing invariably the same Object evinces a design to reduce them under absolute Despotism, it is their right, it is their duty, to throw off such Government, and to provide new Guards for their future security." Oh..darn...is it still legal to quote the Declaration? Well, I guess I should have at least been in designated "free speech zone"before doing such a radical thing....hell, these days Homeland Security labels you a terrorist if you admit you have read the Constitution....sigh...big red flag attached to my name on the no fly list for sure....no Bahamas vacation for me.

The American Gestapo is Busy Today

Amy Goodman and Two Democracy Now! Producers Unlawfully Arrested At the RNC

ST. PAUL, MN—Democracy Now! host Amy Goodman was unlawfully arrested in downtown St. Paul, Minnesota at approximately 5 p.m. local time. Police violently manhandled Goodman, yanking her arm, as they arrested her. Video of her arrest can be seen here:

Goodman was arrested while attempting to free two Democracy Now! producers who were being unlawfuly detained. They are Sharif Abdel Kouddous and Nicole Salazar. Kouddous and Salazar were arrested while they carried out their journalistic duties in covering street demonstrations at the Republican National Convention. Goodman’s crime appears to have been defending her colleagues and the freedom of the press.

Interesting. Generally, the more well known journalists are left alone, as they don't want to outrage the people...they must be pretty sure that the American public has degraded to spineless sheeple to pull this one. Unfortunately, they're probably right, and they probably haven't got much to worry about.

Considering a protest? You Too Could Be Arrested for THOUGHT CRIMES

Massive police raids on suspected protestors in Minneapolis

Federal government involved in raids on protesters

We've gone from seeing citizens brutalized, intimidated, and arrested for exercising their right to free speech, to a bizarre state of affairs where one can receive that treatment for THINKING about doing so. Or being a journalist covering the story of police thugs attacking people in their homes for THINKING about protesting. OR, even being a lawyer willing to represent innocent, non violent people who have broken no laws. We have reached the ultimate police state. They can kick in your door for thought crimes, for disagreeing with the government. Took a bit longer than Orwell thought, but it is here. The inmates are in charge of the asylum, and the sheeple seem to be content with letting them run the show.

The Militarization of Our Police