Thursday, December 10, 2009

Wednesday, December 09, 2009

Chile revisited: TIME: Was the US involved?

Damn right they were, but they tried to blame my father (RIP) for spreading rumors we now know to be true.

My father's name appears in the fifth paragraph.

Wednesday, December 02, 2009

ICH: Obama, the worlds least powerful man(?)

The World’s Least Powerful Man

The Obama Puppet

By Paul Craig Roberts

December 01, 2009 "Information Clearing House" -- It didn’t take the Israel Lobby very long to bring President Obama to heel regarding his prohibition against further illegal Israeli settlements on occupied Palestinian land. Obama discovered that a mere American president is powerless when confronted by the Israel Lobby and that the United States simply is not allowed a Middle East policy separate from Israel’s.

Obama also found out that he cannot change anything else either, if he ever intended to do so.

The military/security lobby has war and a domestic police state on its agenda, and a mere American president can’t do anything about it.

President Obama can order the Guantanamo torture chamber closed and kidnapping and rendition and torture to be halted, but no one carries out the order.

Essentially, Obama is irrelevant.

President Obama can promise that he is going to bring the troops home, and the military lobby says, “No, you are going to send them to Afghanistan, and in the meantime start a war in Pakistan and maneuver Iran into a position that will provide an excuse for a war there, too. Wars are too profitable for us to let you stop them.” And the mere president has to say, “Yes, Sir!”

Obama can promise health care to 50 million uninsured Americans, but he can’t override the veto of the war lobby and the insurance lobby. The war lobby says its war profits are more important than health care and that the country can’t afford both the “war on terror” and “socialized medicine.”

The insurance lobby says health care has to be provided by private health insurance; otherwise, we can’t afford it.

The war and insurance lobbies rattled their campaign contribution pocketbooks and quickly convinced Congress and the White House that the real purpose of the health care bill is to save money by cutting Medicare and Medicaid benefits, thereby “getting entitlements under control.”

Entitlements is a right-wing word used to cast aspersion on the few things that the government did, in the distant past, for citizens. Social Security and Medicare, for example, are denigrated as “entitlements.” The right-wing goes on endlessly about Social Security and Medicare as if they were welfare give-aways to shiftless people who refuse to look after themselves, whereas in actual fact citizens are vastly overcharged for the meager benefits with a 15% tax on their wages and salaries.

Indeed, for decades now the federal government has been funding its wars and military budgets with the surplus revenues collected by the Social Security tax on labor.

To claim, as the right-wing does, that we can’t afford the only thing in the entire budget that has consistently produced a revenue surplus indicates that the real agenda is to drive the mere citizen into the ground.

The real entitlements are never mentioned. The “defense” budget is an entitlement for the military/security complex about which President Eisenhower warned us 50 years ago. A person has to be crazy to believe that the United States, “the world’s only superpower,” protected by oceans on its East and West and by puppet states on its North and South, needs a “defense” budget larger than the military spending of the rest of the world combined.

The military budget is nothing but an entitlement for the military/security complex. To hide this fact, the entitlement is disguised as protection against “enemies” and passed through the Pentagon.

I say cut out the middleman and simply allocate a percentage of the federal budget to the military/security complex. This way we won’t have to concoct reasons for invading other countries and go to war in order for the military/security complex to get its entitlement. It would be a lot cheaper just to give them the money outright, and it
would save a lot of lives and grief at home and abroad.

The US invasion of Iraq had nothing whatsoever to do with American national interests. It had to do with armaments profits and with eliminating an obstacle to Israeli territorial expansion. The cost of the war, aside from the $3 trillion, was over 4,000 dead Americans, over 30,000 wounded and maimed Americans, tens of thousands of broken American marriages and lost careers, one million dead Iraqis, four million displaced Iraqis, and a destroyed country.

All of this was done for the profits of the military/security complex and to make paranoid Israel, armed with 200 nuclear weapons, feel “secure.”

My proposal would make the military/security complex even more wealthy as the companies would get the money without having to produce the weapons. Instead, all the money could go for multi-million dollar bonuses and dividend payouts to shareholders. No one, at home or abroad, would have to be killed, and the taxpayer would be better off.

No American national interest is served by the war in Afghanistan. As the former UK Ambassador Craig Murray disclosed, the purpose of the war is to protect Unocal’s interest in the Trans-Afghanistan pipeline. The cost of the war is many times greater than Unocal’s investment in the pipeline. The obvious solution is to buy out Unocal and give the pipeline to the Afghans as partial compensation for the destruction we have inflicted on that country and its population, and bring the troops home.

The reason my sensible solutions cannot be effected is that the lobbies think that their entitlements would not survive if they were made obvious. They think that if the American people knew that the wars were being fought to enrich the armaments and oil industries, the people would put a halt to the wars.

In actual fact, the American people have no say about what “their” government does. Polls of the public show that half or more of the American people do not support the wars in Iraq or Afghanistan and do not support President Obama’s escalation of the war in Afghanistan. Yet, the occupations and wars continue. According to General Stanley McChrystal, the additional 40,000 troops are enough to stalemate the war, that is, to keep it going forever, the ideal situation for the armaments lobby.

The people want health care, but the government does not listen.

The people want jobs, but Wall Street wants higher priced stocks and forces American firms to offshore the jobs to countries where labor is cheaper.

The American people have no effect on anything. They can affect nothing. They have become irrelevant like Obama. And they will remain irrelevant as long as organized interest groups can purchase the US government.

The inability of the American democracy to produce any results that the voters want is a demonstrated fact. The total unresponsiveness of government to the people is conservatism’s contribution to American democracy. Some years ago there was an effort to put government back into the hands of the people by constraining the ability of organized interest groups to pour enormous amounts of money into political campaigns and, thus, obligate the elected official to those whose money elected him. Conservatives said that any restraints would be a violation of the First Amendment’s guarantee of free speech.

The same “protectors” of “free speech” had no objection to the Israel Lobby’s passage of the “hate speech” bill, which has criminalized criticism of Israel’s genocidal treatment of the Palestinians and continuing theft of their lands.

In less than one year, President Obama has betrayed all of his supporters and broken all of his promises. He is the total captive of the oligarchy of the ruling interest groups. Unless he is saved by an orchestrated 9/11-type event, Obama is a one-term president. Indeed, the collapsing economy will doom him regardless of a “terrorist event.”

The Republicans are grooming Palin. Our first female president, following our first black president, will complete the transition to an American police state by arresting critics and protesters of Washington’s immoral foreign and domestic policies, and she will complete the destruction of America’s reputation abroad.

Russia’s Putin has already compared the US to Nazi Germany, and the Chinese premier has likened the US to an irresponsible, profligate debtor.

Increasingly the rest of the world sees the US as the sole source of all of its problems. Germany has lost the chief of its armed forces and its defense minister, because the US convinced or pressured, by hook or crook, the German government to violate its Constitution and to send troops to fight for Unocal’s interest in Afghanistan. The Germans had pretended that their troops were not really fighting, but were were engaged in a “peace-keeping operation.” This more or less worked until the Germans called in an air strike that murdered 100 women and children lined up for a fuel allotment.

The British are investigating their leading criminal, former prime minister Tony Blair, and his deception of his own cabinet in order to do Bush’s bidding and provide some cover for Bush’s illegal invasion of Iraq. The UK investigators have been denied the ability to bring criminal charges, but the issue of war based entirely on orchestrated deception and lies is getting a hearing. It will reverberate throughout the world, and the world will note that there is no corresponding investigation in the US, the country that originated the False War.

Meanwhile, the US investment banks, which have wrecked the financial stability of many governments, including that of the US, continue to control, as they have done since the Clinton administration, US economic and financial policy. The world has suffered terribly from the Wall Street gangsters, and now looks upon America with a
critical eye.

The United States no longer commands the respect it enjoyed under President Ronald Reagan or President George Herbert Walker Bush. World polls show that the US and its puppet master are regarded as the two greatest threats to peace. Washington and Israel outrank on the most dangerous list the crazy regime in North Korea.

The world is beginning to see America as a country that needs to go away. When the dollar is over-inflated by a Washington unable to pay its bills, will the world be motivated by greed and try to save us in order to save its investments, or will it say, thank God, good riddance

U of M(arijuana)

Wednesday, November 25, 2009

Wednesday, November 18, 2009


Africa's population reaches 1 billion

Think about the hundreds of millions of Africans who died during the Middle Passage and you can guess that Africa would have topped that number probably before China and India.

Raw Story: Religious right trawling for Obama's assassination

Infowars: reposted -- fabled enemies

Friday, November 06, 2009

ICH, John Nichols: Horror at FT. Hood Inspires predictable Islamophobia

Nichols was one of my editors at the Cap Times aeons ago, and still pumping out quality news analysis at the Nation. Read his book, The Genius of Impeachment

Wednesday, November 04, 2009

Monday, November 02, 2009

Thursday, October 29, 2009

UN condemns US embargo against cuba

The vote was 187-3, with two abstentions...

Amazing, how despite the embargo, Cuba has successfully provided her people with the BASIC human, housing, and healthcare....imaging what we could learn from a country that could do these things in the face of a malicious and senseless embargo.

Friday, October 16, 2009

Powell warned of US fueled terror-industrial complex

I could never forgive this man for the false "intelligence" he spewed, and for allowing himself to be a tool of the Bush Adms racist and imperialist wars, but this is a good article, with cameo by Monty Python.

Friday, October 09, 2009

Not just conservatives questioning Obama's Nobel Prize

WTF? This man has done nothing thus far to advance human rights and justice for all!

Wednesday, August 26, 2009

Monday, August 03, 2009

ICH: So much for the promised land

Another good article by Chris Hedges

News of the Late: Duh' "Is the US creating a military economy?"

Yes, and that extends to the occupying racist and violent police forces within the country.

Wednesday, June 24, 2009

Houston jail staff mum on woman's death

"A woman serving a short sentence in a Houston, Texas, jail for possession of marijuana died in custody over the weekend, and officers are not saying how or why.

The 29-year-old, identified as Theresa Anthony, had expected to spend just two and a half weeks behind bars in the Harris County lockup. On Saturday, Cynthia Prude, Theresa’s mother, received a phone call from the jail’s Chaplain informing her that her daughter was dead."

Thursday, June 18, 2009

Sickest story of the day: Cops of the '68 Dem convention set to celebrate their own brutality, whitewash history

I suppose the police at the 08 Twin Cities RNC might want to join Hell.

Tuesday, June 16, 2009

Chris Hedges: The American Empire is Bankrupt

The American Empire Is Bankrupt

By Chris Hedges

June 15, 2009 "Truthdig" --- This week marks the end of the dollar’s reign as the world’s reserve currency. It marks the start of a terrible period of economic and political decline in the United States. And it signals the last gasp of the American imperium. That’s over. It is not coming back. And what is to come will be very, very painful.

Barack Obama, and the criminal class on Wall Street, aided by a corporate media that continues to peddle fatuous gossip and trash talk as news while we endure the greatest economic crisis in our history, may have fooled us, but the rest of the world knows we are bankrupt. And these nations are damned if they are going to continue to prop up an inflated dollar and sustain the massive federal budget deficits, swollen to over $2 trillion, which fund America’s imperial expansion in Eurasia and our system of casino capitalism. They have us by the throat. They are about to squeeze.

There are meetings being held Monday and Tuesday in Yekaterinburg, Russia, (formerly Sverdlovsk) among Chinese President Hu Jintao, Russian President Dmitry Medvedev and other top officials of the six-nation Shanghai Cooperation Organization. The United States, which asked to attend, was denied admittance. Watch what happens there carefully. The gathering is, in the words of economist Michael Hudson, “the most important meeting of the 21st century so far.”

It is the first formal step by our major trading partners to replace the dollar as the world’s reserve currency. If they succeed, the dollar will dramatically plummet in value, the cost of imports, including oil, will skyrocket, interest rates will climb and jobs will hemorrhage at a rate that will make the last few months look like boom times. State and federal services will be reduced or shut down for lack of funds. The United States will begin to resemble the Weimar Republic or Zimbabwe. Obama, endowed by many with the qualities of a savior, will suddenly look pitiful, inept and weak. And the rage that has kindled a handful of shootings and hate crimes in the past few weeks will engulf vast segments of a disenfranchised and bewildered working and middle class. The people of this class will demand vengeance, radical change, order and moral renewal, which an array of proto-fascists, from the Christian right to the goons who disseminate hate talk on Fox News, will assure the country they will impose.

I called Hudson, who has an article in Monday’s Financial Times called “The Yekaterinburg Turning Point: De-Dollarization and the Ending of America’s Financial-Military Hegemony.” “Yekaterinburg,” Hudson writes, “may become known not only as the death place of the czars but of the American empire as well.” His article is worth reading, along with John Lanchester’s disturbing exposé of the world’s banking system, titled “It’s Finished,” which appeared in the May 28 issue of the London Review of Books.

“This means the end of the dollar,” Hudson told me. “It means China, Russia, India, Pakistan, Iran are forming an official financial and military area to get America out of Eurasia. The balance-of-payments deficit is mainly military in nature. Half of America’s discretionary spending is military. The deficit ends up in the hands of foreign banks, central banks. They don’t have any choice but to recycle the money to buy U.S. government debt. The Asian countries have been financing their own military encirclement. They have been forced to accept dollars that have no chance of being repaid. They are paying for America’s military aggression against them. They want to get rid of this.”

China, as Hudson points out, has already struck bilateral trade deals with Brazil and Malaysia to denominate their trade in China’s yuan rather than the dollar, pound or euro. Russia promises to begin trading in the ruble and local currencies. The governor of China’s central bank has openly called for the abandonment of the dollar as reserve currency, suggesting in its place the use of the International Monetary Fund’s Special Drawing Rights. What the new system will be remains unclear, but the flight from the dollar has clearly begun. The goal, in the words of the Russian president, is to build a “multipolar world order” which will break the economic and, by extension, military domination by the United States. China is frantically spending its dollar reserves to buy factories and property around the globe so it can unload its U.S. currency. This is why Aluminum Corp. of China made so many major concessions in the failed attempt to salvage its $19.5 billion alliance with the Rio Tinto mining concern in Australia. It desperately needs to shed its dollars.

“China is trying to get rid of all the dollars they can in a trash-for-resource deal,” Hudson said. “They will give the dollars to countries willing to sell off their resources since America refuses to sell any of its high-tech industries, even Unocal, to the yellow peril. It realizes these dollars are going to be worthless pretty quickly.”

The architects of this new global exchange realize that if they break the dollar they also break America’s military domination. Our military spending cannot be sustained without this cycle of heavy borrowing. The official U.S. defense budget for fiscal year 2008 is $623 billion, before we add on things like nuclear research. The next closest national military budget is China’s, at $65 billion, according to the Central Intelligence Agency.

There are three categories of the balance-of-payment deficits. America imports more than it exports. This is trade. Wall Street and American corporations buy up foreign companies. This is capital movement. The third and most important balance-of-payment deficit for the past 50 years has been Pentagon spending abroad. It is primarily military spending that has been responsible for the balance-of-payments deficit for the last five decades. Look at table five in the Balance of Payments Report, published in the Survey of Current Business quarterly, and check under military spending. There you can see the deficit.

To fund our permanent war economy, we have been flooding the world with dollars. The foreign recipients turn the dollars over to their central banks for local currency. The central banks then have a problem. If a central bank does not spend the money in the United States then the exchange rate against the dollar will go up. This will penalize exporters. This has allowed America to print money without restraint to buy imports and foreign companies, fund our military expansion and ensure that foreign nations like China continue to buy our treasury bonds. This cycle appears now to be over. Once the dollar cannot flood central banks and no one buys our treasury bonds, our empire collapses. The profligate spending on the military, some $1 trillion when everything is counted, will be unsustainable.

“We will have to finance our own military spending,” Hudson warned, “and the only way to do this will be to sharply cut back wage rates. The class war is back in business. Wall Street understands that. This is why it had Bush and Obama give it $10 trillion in a huge rip-off so it can have enough money to survive.”

The desperate effort to borrow our way out of financial collapse has promoted a level of state intervention unseen since World War II. It has also led us into uncharted territory.

“We have in effect had to declare war to get us out of the hole created by our economic system,” Lanchester wrote in the London Review of Books. “There is no model or precedent for this, and no way to argue that it’s all right really, because under such-and-such a model of capitalism ... there is no such model. It isn’t supposed to work like this, and there is no road-map for what’s happened.”

The cost of daily living, from buying food to getting medical care, will become difficult for all but a few as the dollar plunges. States and cities will see their pension funds drained and finally shut down. The government will be forced to sell off infrastructure, including roads and transport, to private corporations. We will be increasingly charged by privatized utilities—think Enron—for what was once regulated and subsidized. Commercial and private real estate will be worth less than half its current value. The negative equity that already plagues 25 percent of American homes will expand to include nearly all property owners. It will be difficult to borrow and impossible to sell real estate unless we accept massive losses. There will be block after block of empty stores and boarded-up houses. Foreclosures will be epidemic. There will be long lines at soup kitchens and many, many homeless. Our corporate-controlled media, already banal and trivial, will work overtime to anesthetize us with useless gossip, spectacles, sex, gratuitous violence, fear and tawdry junk politics. America will be composed of a large dispossessed underclass and a tiny empowered oligarchy that will run a ruthless and brutal system of neo-feudalism from secure compounds. Those who resist will be silenced, many by force. We will pay a terrible price, and we will pay this price soon, for the gross malfeasance of our power elite.

Monday, June 15, 2009

Pres. Obama vs. Prof. John Henrick Clarke


President Barrack Hussein Obama Vs Professor John Henrik Clarke

By Bro. Sadiki Ojore Olugbala (Shepard P. McDaniel)

Tuesday, June 9, 2009

The United States President Barrack Hussein Obama Said:

"The Palestinians must abandon violence. Resistance through violence and killing is wrong and does not succeed. For centuries, Black people in America suffered the lash of the whip as slaves and the humiliation of segregation. But it was not violence that won full and equal rights. It was peaceful and determined insistence upon the ideals at the center of America's founding. This same story can be told by people from South Africa to South Asia; from Eastern Europe to Indonesia. It's a story with a dead end. Violence is not how moral authority is claimed; that is how it is surrendered."

Dr. John Henrik Clarke, Professor Emeritus Of African History Said:

"Ours has been a continuous struggle, starting with the capture, the middle passage, slave revolts and each successive generation of revolutionaries. The Black freedom fighters who resisted militarily in the 1960s, 70's and 80s follow in the tradition of Harriet Tubman, Denmark Vessey, Nat Turner, and Malcolm X. Their struggle - our struggle - is similar to that of other peoples in the world striving for human rights and self-determination. Part of our task now, is to have international Law and the international community recognize and protect the just struggle of Black Freedom Fighters within the United States of America."

With the above June 4, 2009 statement that was ironically given on African soil; Contrary to western media, Egypt is not a part of the "middle east"...............................

This so called "first African-American" President of the United States, has now "officially" become a complete sellout and an embarrassing insult to those Afrikan ancestors who willingly gave their lives in armed struggle against the tyranny of Chattel Slavery, European Colonialism, Genocidal Imperialism, Racist Apartheid, Jim Crow Segregation, and Fascist Police State Terrorism.

Fortunately his futile attempts to change history for the benefit of his European political masters will ultimately prove to be the only "story with a dead end" because "Truth Crushed To The Earth, Will Always Rise"

History has repeatedly proven that successful peace negotiations with the oppressor; can never taken place without a clear and present military consequence from the oppressed. Even Gandhi had an armed force waiting in the wings, to deal with the British military which he himself had once served for as a murderer of African peoples.

Just to name a few........Did this brilliant & educated "black" President ever learn or even study about the just armed struggles of Candice, Nzinga, Sundiata, The Mahdi, The Zulu, The Ashante, The Mau Mau, The Amistad, Palmares, The Maroons, Nat Turner, Gabriel Prosser, Denmark Vessey, The New Orleans Rebellion, The New York Rebellion, Rosewood, East St. Louis, Fort Pillow, Camp Logan, Cabral, Algeria, Cuba, Haiti, Mozambique, Angola, SWAPO, Vietnam, China, The French Revolution; The Russian Revolution and/or The American Revolution that he erroneously quotes in his statement as being "a peaceful founding ideal"

I guess that the Indigenous armed resistance by Native warriors like Cochise, Sitting Bull & Geronimo should also have been replaced by the peaceful and total genocide of all so-called Native Americans.

I for one agree with Dr. Clarke's above 1990s message from the grave; as well as the countless of other Black warriors who would refuse to stand by and watch their children or loved ones be murdered the oppressor; without a just and equal response.

Media just now covering neo-nazis in US military

The US military has ALWAYS had a eugenic, genocidal approach towards non western, non white cultures, nations and peoples. That NeoNazis and other violent racists find safe harbor and encouragement in the military should surprise no one with an IQ above 90. Our military and police departments fail at providing equal justice under the law precisely due to the overall racist thrust of our military endeavors, despite the fact that these policies are carried out by an armed forces that is more that one half Black, Latino, Native American and Asian.

Cheney wants an attack on America: Leon Panetta

Despite his denials, you know that cheney and his blackwater buddies and their lackeys in the media will, I believe, instigate another false flag event.

Wednesday, June 10, 2009

Domestic terrorism alive and kicking

REAR ADMIRAL John G. Crommelin, USN, said this about James von Brunn:
"It is my conviction that James von Brunn deserves the gratitude and assistance of every White Christian citizen of these United States."

From the website of domestic terrorist James von Brunn, the gunman who murdered a guard on the National Mall at the National Holocaust Museum.

Tuesday, June 09, 2009

Communities United Against Police Brutality -- Email news

Communities United Against Police Brutality
June 9, 2009

Federal Appeals Court Hearing
False Reporting Lawsuit
Wednesday, June 10, 8:30 a.m.
Federal Court, 316 Robert St, St. Paul
Three years ago, the state legislature passed a terrible law criminalizing the "false" reporting of police brutality. So far, it's been used against people who reported incidents of sexual assault by police, even when there was biological proof that their complaints were true. In other words, this law allows cops--the same ones you're complaining about--to use the criminal justice system against you if you dare to complain. The law goes even further: it states that if you "cause to be reported" to a law enforcement officer, you could be prosecuted. That means this law applies to reporters, lawyers and others who tell the stories of others who have been brutalized. Clearly this is meant to chill free speech and criticism of public officials and provides yet another barrier to meaningful oversight of the cops. We sued the state of Minnesota over this law. Plaintiffs include this editor (as someone who reports on police brutality incidents in this newsletter and is an officer of CUAPB), two journalists who cover the police brutality beat (that would be Lydia Howell and myself, Rashard Zanders), a person who was charged under this law after being sexually assaulted by cops, and a lawyer who litigates police brutality cases. Despite the fact that a nearly identical law was overturned in California, a freedom-hating federal judge ruled against us, essentially saying that if we hadn't been charged yet we can't sue but if we have been charged we should "seek justice" by fighting against the charges in court. This is an outrageous ruling as no one is required to defend against civil rights violations in criminal court but also because it doesn't address the fact that the potential for charges has a chilling effect on free speech long before someone is prosecuted. This hearing on Wednesday is our federal appeal before a panel of three judges. Federal appeals are fairly rare occurrences and should provide some fascinating court watching. The hearing is short--we get only 15 minutes of oral argument--so please be on time.

Help set up and staff our booth at the
Annual Juneteenth Celebration
Sunday, June 14th
Boom Island, 724 Sibley St NE, Minneapolis
Juneteenth is a celebration of the unofficial end of slavery, some two years after Lincoln's emancipation proclamation when word finally reached Galveston, Texas on June 19, 1865. This date is recognized across the US as African American liberation day. One of the largest annual celebrations is here in Minneapolis and we have a wildly popular booth every year. It you can dedicate a few hours to help us with the booth, you'll have fun, meet lots of cool people, and your efforts will really be appreciated. Set up is early--we'll be meeting at Walker Church at 7:00 a.m. to load up and car pool to Boom Island. The festival itself runs 11:00 a.m. to 5:00 p.m. and we'll need help staffing the booth and tearing down afterwards. If you can help, please reply to this email to let us know or just show up on Sunday either at Walker in the morning or at the booth during the festival. This year we will focus on stolen lives around the state as well as the RNC 8 case.

Public Hearing on Brutality and Misconduct by Minneapolis Police
Monday, June 15 6:00 p.m.
Minneapolis Urban League, 2100 Plymouth Avenue
It has become apparent that Minneapolis police are out of control. There have been multiple killings of community members in outrageous circumstances over the last few years. Just in the last few months, calls to our hotline have shot up sharply and are filled with horrific tales of abuse. Between the defanging of the Minneapolis civilian review authority, the abuses of the gang strike task force and the utter lack of willingness on the part of the mayor and city council to hold this police force accountable, local control of the police no longer seems possible. We are gathering testimony for the purpose of seeking federal receivership of the Minneapolis police department. Come and share your story with the community for the purpose of seeking justice.

TruthToTell Three-Part Radio Series: Cop Culture - Fear and Loathing in the Streets
Wednesdays June 10--17--24, 11:00 a.m.
KFAI Radio 90.3FM-Minneapolis/106.7FM Saint Paul and STREAMING at <>
TruthToTell examines the dark and isolated world of local police culture and the nature of law enforcement in general. •Why has this paramilitary subset of civil society grown so insular, more secretive and more rageful and violent? •How can we address the increasing federal conscription of local law enforcement agencies to violently put down legitimate political dissent – while stoking the deepening paranoia over those who disagree with increasingly rightwing and racist policing? •Why are we seeing more and more deception in police reports, shredding of documents, disappearing evidence and confiscated money? •Why can’t we convict renegade cops and redress their abuses? •Is there or has there ever been a bright line between some officers and the alleged offenders they arrest and charge? •Where is accountability in law enforcement? •Is it recoverable? Cops don’t live in the places they patrol anymore. What role has that played in the dissociation between police and the people they "protect?" TTT's ANDY DRISCOLL and LYNNELL MICKELSEN talk with current and former local and federal law enforcement, defense community, critics, policymakers, residents and reporters about what we can do to change these occupying armies back to community policing. Join us for this three-part series.
All white, rural jury rules that cop was in fear for his life
Despite significant evidence of police racism and misconduct, an all-white rural jury ruled that Minneapolis cop Jason Andersen was likely in fear for his life. The way jury instructions were set up, this allowed them to block the Lee family from receiving any justice in the case. The instructions were scripted into a series of questions so that a yes answer would mean that the jury would stop, not go on to the next question and would be ruling in favor of Andersen. The first question was "under a 'reasonable police officer' standard, knowing that police have to make split-second decisions, do you believe Officer Andersen was in fear for his life?" Further down the series of questions was whether deadly force was justified. Nowhere in the list of questions was the issue of the throw down gun mentioned.

Of course, just answering yes to that first question meant that jurors had to ignore the fact that Andersen was running AT Fong Lee the entire time and that he moved closer to Lee with each gunshot. It wasn't hard for them, after the judge encouraged them to draw on their (white) life experiences in deciding. Few whites have life experiences that are comparable to what people of color deal with at the hands of police.

Answering yes to that first question meant that jurors never had to deal with the question of the throw down gun. They could ignore mountains of evidence--not to mention an absolutely contorted story by the MPD--about a gun being on the scene that had been in police custody until the shooting. They could disregard the fact that while Fong Lee had defensive wounds through both hands and both hands were covered in blood the gun cops claimed he was holding had no blood, sweat, fingerprints, fibers, DNA or anything else tying it to Fong Lee. The jurors never had to consider that.

Jurors sat through five days of testimony in which witnesses who had never met Lee testified to seeing him cornered and heard him let out a blood-curdling scream before Andersen opened fire, shooting him in the back and buttocks four times. Once Fong fell to the ground, Anderson stood over him and shot him five more times. Multiple witnesses testified that Andersen never told Lee to drop a gun or anything like that. Only one witness--a woman well known to Minneapolis cops and often referred to by them by first name--testified that she heard Anderson say "put down the gun." She was supposedly running in and out of her house and rounding up her children while this was happening. Her testimony was just not credible.

Federal Judge Paul Magnuson, well known for being a system man, played a significant role in propping up the MPD. He ruled that scurrilous rumors about Fong Lee being a gang member (not backed by any evidence) could be brought in but he kept out actual documented complaints about racist comments against Asians made by Andersen. And then, of course, there were those jury instructions which were meant to ensure an unfavorable outcome for the Lee family. To add insult to injury, after the Lee family had spent long hours over two days waiting in the courthouse for a verdict, the judge instructed the family that they should take a lunch break. As soon as the family was away from the courthouse, he brought the jury in to read the verdict into the record. The family learned of the verdict from a reporter.

Community outrage over this verdict led to a huge turnout at an emergency rally held Saturday, May 30th at University and Marion in St. Paul. On only a few hours notice, hundreds came out to support the Lee family as they prepare to file an appeal. The general sentiment of the community was apparent at this rally as most cars driving by honked their horns while drivers and passengers yelled messages of support. Broad segments of the community, including Latinos, Somalis, African Americans and others by the hundreds stood with the Hmong community to demand justice.

Thank you for standing with this family. As this case proceeds to appeal, we will keep you apprised of further developments.
Note: To this list, we would add the Quincy Smith, Fong Lee, Ahmed Gulad cases and others in which unarmed people of color were slain by cops right here in the Twin Cities. Just as in the Fong Lee case, a throwdown gun was used to justify the killing of Bernard Monroe.

Probing Bias Behind The Badge: Louisiana shooting among 4 similar cases across U.S.
By Howard Witt | Tribune Newspapers March 14, 2009

HOMER, La. - ­ On the last afternoon of his life, Bernard Monroe was hosting a cookout for family and friends in front of his dilapidated home on Adams Street in this small northern Louisiana town.

Throat cancer had robbed the 73-year-old retired electric utility worker of his voice years ago, but family members said Monroe clearly was enjoying the commotion of his grandchildren and great-grandchildren cavorting around him in the yard.

Then the Homer police showed up, two white officers whose arrival caused the black family gathering to quickly fall silent.

Within moments, Monroe lay dead, shot by one of the officers as his family looked on.

Now the Louisiana State Police, the FBI and the U.S. Justice Department are swarming over this impoverished lumber town of 3,800, drawn by the allegations of numerous witnesses that police killed an unarmed, elderly black man without justification­and then moved a gun to make it look as though the man had been holding it.

"We are closely monitoring the events in Homer," said Donald Washington, the U.S. attorney for the Western District of Louisiana.

Yet the Feb. 20 Homer incident was not an isolated case. Across the U.S., in four recent cases, white police officers have been accused of unprovoked shootings of African-Americans in what civil rights leaders say are illustrations of the potentially deadly consequences of racial profiling by police.

In the mostly white Houston suburb of Bellaire, a 23-year-old black man sitting in his SUV in the driveway of his parents' home was shot and wounded on New Year's Eve by police who mistakenly believed he had stolen the vehicle. The case is under investigation.

In Oakland, a transit police officer has been charged with murder in the shooting of an unarmed black man in the back while he was restrained and lying face down on a train platform on Jan. 1.

In New Orleans, nine police officers are under investigation in the New Year's Day death of a black man who was struck by 14 bullets after an undercover team stopped his car. Police say the man, 22, raised a gun and fired at them, but his family disputes that.

"All the anecdotal information demonstrates that African-Americans are the most frequent victims of zealous, inappropriate police activity that often winds up in a shooting," said Reggie Shuford, an attorney at the American Civil Liberties Union.

"People here are afraid of the police," said Terry Willis, vice president of the Homer NAACP branch. "They harass black people, they stop people for no reason and rough them up without charging them with anything."

That is how it should be, responded Russell Mills, Homer's police chief ... "If I see three or four young black men walking down the street, I have to stop them and check their names," said Mills, who is white. "I want them to be afraid every time they see the police that they might get arrested."

The Homer police claim Monroe was holding a gun when he was shot but would not comment further.

A Wisconsin judge overturned the conviction of a man found in possession of a handgun and marijuana joints, finding that he did not voluntarily consent to a search of his car. The defendant, Malcolm J. Muller, initially refused consent, but later gave permission after officers had already started searching the vehicle. The Judge found that the initial illegal search tainted the defendant's subsequent waiver of his 4th amendment rights.

While this suspect was ultimately released, this case demonstrates the importance of standing your ground and NEVER consenting to a search. (And, of course, NEVER carrying a gun and illegal drugs in your vehicle.)

Police will often conduct a search after consent is denied, hoping that they'll be able to convince a judge that they had probable cause. If you give up and consent just because they've started searching, you risk legalizing an otherwise unreasonable search.

To paraphrase Winson Churchill, "Never, never, never, never give up your rights!"
By Thomas J. Prohaska

LOCKPORT ­ It is legally permissible for police to zap a suspect with a Taser to obtain a DNA sample, as long as it’s not done “maliciously, or to an excessive extent, or with resulting injury,” a county judge has ruled in the first case of its kind in New York State, and possibly the nation.

Niagara County Judge Sara Sheldon Sperrazza decided that the DNA sample obtained Sept. 29 from Ryan S. Smith of Niagara Falls ­ which ties him to a shooting and a gas station robbery­ is legally valid and can be used at his trial.

Smith was handcuffed and sitting on the floor of Niagara Falls Police Headquarters when he was zapped with the 50,000- volt electronic stun gun after he insisted he would not give a DNA sample.

He already had given a sample, a swab of the inside of his cheek, without protest the previous month. But police sent it to the wrong lab, where it was opened and spoiled. Prosecutors who had obtained a court order for the first sample went back to Sperrazza, who signed another order without consulting the defense.

Defense lawyer Patrick M. Balkin denounced the ruling in an interview with The Buffalo News.

“They have now given the Niagara Falls police discretion to Taser anybody anytime they think it’s reasonable,” he asserted. “Her decision says you can enforce a court order by force. If you extrapolate that, we no longer have to have child support hearings; you can just Taser the parent.”

A police officer said that when Smith was ordered by officers to give his DNA, he adamantly refused.

“I ain’t giving up my DNA again. I already gave it up once. I’ll sit in jail. I ain’t giving it up. You’re going to have to Tase me,” the officer’s report stated.

The officer wrote that he then applied the stun gun to Smith’s left shoulder, a “drive stun” that is regarded as less painful than shooting electric prongs into a person, which is the usual Taser approach. Smith then consented to the sample, and he was arrested on a contempt of court charge.

In her ruling, Sperrazza cited numerous legal precedents and the state’s Criminal Procedure Law, allowing the use of reasonable force to carry out a court order.

Although there are no New York cases specifically dealing with using a Taser to accomplish that, the judge did find a Wyoming case where a court ruled it was legal to use a Taser to force a suspect to open his hand for a search.

Balkin and other lawyers familiar with the case say they know of no other case in the country in which a Taser was used to gather DNA.

The decision Wednesday in Niagara County stunned Balkin, who admitted in court that he hadn’t been carrying out trial preparation, such as seeking an expert to review the DNA test results.

“It’s my fault,” Balkin told Sperrazza. “I truly thought it was going to be suppressed.”

Balkin thought a victory on the Taser issue would lead to the dismissal of the 24-count indictment against Smith, 21, of Grove Avenue.

Sperrazza granted a postponement of Smith’s trial to Aug. 10.

Smith is charged with shooting a man in the groin July 27, 2006, after allegedly invading his ex-girlfriend’s home, tying up her two children and forcing the woman to take him to the shooting victim’s home.

He is also accused of taking part in the Dec. 24, 2006, armed robbery of a Sunoco station in Niagara Falls. A codefendant in the robbery, Christopher T. Walker Jr., now 21, pleaded guilty and is serving a 10-year state prison sentence.

DNA was found on a can of pop taken from Smith’s ex-girlfriend’s refrigerator and on a glove dropped at the gas station. It matched a sample he had to give after a previous assault conviction, and prosecutors sought another sample from Smith to confirm the findings.

“Our case is mostly DNA,” Deputy District Attorney Doreen M. Hoffmann said.

She also said she didn’t agree with Balkin that suppressing the DNA sample would have led to the dismissal of the indictment.

There is a surveillance video of the gas station robbery, Hoffmann revealed in court.

Balkin said he also was most concerned about Sperrazza’s reasoning that she didn’t have to go through a courtroom procedure for the second DNA sample because Smith had not objected to the first one.

“The court waived my client’s due process,” the defense lawyer said.

Testimony at a hearing last month partially contradicted the incident report written by Officer George McDonell, who used the Taser on Smith.

Sperrazza wrote in her ruling, based on police testimony, that when Smith refused to give another sample, Detective Lt. William Thomson phoned Hoffmann about it, and Hoffmann “instructed him that they could use the minimum force necessary to obtain the sample.”

But McDonell wrote in his report, “It was relayed that officers could use any means necessary to secure the sample.”

Sperrazza said the police should have arrested Smith first and brought him to court to be warned about the penalties for noncompliance with a court order.

McDonell testified that he used the Taser for one to two seconds. Another officer testified that the data readout on the Taser showed it was on for as long as four seconds.

Court papers filed by Smith’s civil attorney, Christopher O’Brien, assert that Smith was zapped three times and lost consciousness. McDonell’s report says, “Suspect complained of no injury and none was observed.”
The editorial below refers to the cop on cop killing of Black officer Omar Edwards by two white colleagues while he was pursuing a car theft suspect. See . This harkens back to the shooting of Minneapolis police officer Duy Ngo by white cop Charles Storlie, who had previously killed Black teenager Tycel Nelson.

You never read this headline: 'Black cop shoots white cop'
Errol Louis
Friday, May 29th 2009, 10:29 PM

Many will assume that the killing of Officer Omar Edwards was the result of a tragic but honest mistake, an accident with no malice or racial bias at work.

That would be a reasonable conclusion - and a dead wrong one.

There is nothing reasonable about the fact we never see black or Latino cops accidentally gunning down white undercover officers, but the reverse has been true in several high-profile cases.

It's true that Edwards may have violated Patrol Guide procedures by wheeling around with a weapon in his hand instead of instantly freezing and dropping his gun when ordered to do so.

The officers who killed Edwards may have violated policy, too. We don't know what kind of warning was shouted, and the fatal bullet reportedly entered Edwards' back, raising questions about why and when he was seen as a deadly threat.

For now, we must leave it to departmental investigators and the courts to sort out what happened.

But even before the evidence is in, what every New Yorker can do is acknowledge - and battle - the malicious myth that most black men are up to no good and likely to commit criminal violence.

It's a mindset that leads the public to believe nuts and fraudsters - most recently, Bonnie Sweeten of Florida, who set off a national search by falsely telling FBI agents she and her daughter had been kidnapped by two black men in a Cadillac.

The story wasn't true - and Sweeten faces criminal charges for lying - but America fell for it hook, line and sinker, launching national Amber alerts.

In a similar case, a campaign worker named Ashley Todd last year falsely claimed a 6-foot-4 black man carved a "B" (for Barack Obama) into her cheek. That, too, was a lie.

And so was the 1994 tale spun by Susan Smith of South Carolina, who said a black bogeyman carjacked her two sons - who, it turned out, had died when Smith killed her children by rolling her car into a lake.

This isn't South Carolina or Pittsburgh or Florida: We New Yorkers like to pride ourselves on being tolerant and sophisticated. But we, too, are susceptible to the bias trap.

One news headline described Edwards as "mistaken for a thug" - a reminder of the slurs cops throw around on the job and off. People get classified as thugs, perps, skells, punks and worse.

An onslaught of gangsta rap and other cultural garbage bolsters the bias. We pay a heavy price by letting racist imagery, words and accusations slosh around society unchecked and unchallenged.

In the tense, split-second needed to separate a cop from a crook on a dark street, those myths may have cost a good man his life.
Communities United Against Police Brutality
3100 16th Avenue S
Minneapolis, MN 55407
Hotline 612-874-STOP (7867)
Meetings: Every Saturday at 1:30 p.m. at Walker Church, 3104 16th Avenue South

Thursday, May 07, 2009

CUAPB alert: Justice for Fong Lee!

Video shows that Fong Lee DID not have a gun -- this young man was MURDERED by the Minneapolis Police Department, which even had the audacity to award a medal to officer Jason Anderson for this cold-blooded murder. The Minneapolis Police Department needs to be investigated and disbanded and put in receivership with federal controls. Murderers exist on both sides of the badge!

Communities United Against Police Brutality
May 7, 2009
Unarmed man killed by Minneapolis cops
Monday, May 11, 8:45 a.m.
Federal Courthouse
316 N Robert Street, St. Paul

Shuttle buses will be available starting at 8:00 a.m. from Lao Family Community of Minnesota, 320 W University Ave, St. Paul
OR meet at 8:00 a.m. at Joseph’s Grill, 140 Wabasha St S, St. Paul, and march with others across the Robert Street bridge to the Courthouse

On July 22, 2006, Fong Lee was riding his bike with friends when Minneapolis cop Jason Andersen and state trooper Craig Benz decided a little "aggressive policing" was in order. They rode their squad car up on the group of young men and, according to several witnesses, hit the rear tire of Fong's bike. Fong either fell or jumped off the bike as the officers ran out of their squad car. Andersen was pointing his gun as he chased Fong through a school playground. Andersen shot Fong 4 times in the back. As Fong lay dying, Andersen shot him 4 more times. 31 seconds after the start of the encounter, Fong Lee was dead. Throughout the entire ordeal, Benz never pulled his weapon.

MPD Lies and Corruption

After the killing, MPD claimed Fong had a gun. However, witnesses and evidence point strongly to a gun being planted on the scene by cops. The gun cops claim was recovered next to Fong's body was in their property room up to the time of the shooting and was likely brought on the scene by a sergeant. The gun had no fingerprints, DNA or blood on it. Further, Fong had a defensive wound in the palm of his dominant hand. The squad car video was rendered useless because it remained in the squad car to which Andersen had access for 10 days after the incident and has, according to experts, been partially erased. What the cops didn't count on is a video of the incident captured by a camera at the school. That video clearly shows that Fong never had a gun.

Case of Extreme Importance to Community

This case is emblematic of all that is wrong with the MPD and the judicial system that backs them up. Racial profiling, corruption, manipulation of evidence and outright lies are all part of this case. Immediately after the incident, cops went into spin mode to dirty up Fong Lee with lies that he was a gang member or criminal (he was neither). An internal non-investigation exonerated Andersen and a bogus grand jury process gave prosecutors political cover not to prosecute Andersen. The story about the gun has changed at least three times. Hennepin County if fighting tooth and nail to block release of the grand jury transcript even to the Lee family's lawyers. On top of everything else, the MPD spit in the face of the community by pinning a medal of "valor" on Andersen.

Lee Family Seeks Justice--Stand with Them!

The Lee family has always held that their son was murdered by Andersen based on race. They have bravely stood up to the lies and corruption of the MPD and continue to press forward, recognizing the importance this case has to the community. We must stand with this family as they try to bring at least some good out of Fong's death by forcing this system to be accountable and as they push for changes to prevent such tragedies in the future. This case goes to court on May 11 and there is a rally outside the courthouse. WE NEED YOU THERE to show the courts that the community supports the Lee family's demands for justice.

Rally sponsored by Coalition for Community Relations, Communities United Against Police Brutality, Lao Family Community of Minnesota, Inc., Minneapolis NAACP, Take Action Minnesota.

Communities United Against Police Brutality
3100 16th Avenue S
Minneapolis, MN 55407
Hotline 612-874-STOP (7867)
Meetings: Every Saturday at 1:30 p.m. at Walker Church, 3104 16th Avenue South

Wednesday, May 06, 2009

The Swine Flu and NAFTA

A food system that kills

Swine flu is meat industry's latest plague

GRAIN, April 2009

Mexico is in the midst of a hellish repeat of Asia's bird flu experience, though on a more deadly scale. Once again, the official response from public authorities has come too late and bungled in cover-ups. And once again, the global meat industry is at the centre of the story, ramping up denials as the weight of evidence about its role grows. Just five years after the start of the H5N1 bird flu crisis, and after as many years of a global strategy against influenza pandemics coordinated by the World Health Organisation (WHO) and the World Organisation for Animal Health (OIE), the world is now reeling from a swine flu disaster. The global strategy has failed and needs to be replaced with a public health system that the public can trust.

Read the full version at:

How “The NAFTA Flu” Exploded
Smithfield Farms Fled US Environmental Laws to Open a Gigantic Pig Farm in Mexico, and All We Got Was this Lousy Swine Flu

By Al Giordano
Special to The Narco News Bulletin

April 29, 2009

US and Mexico authorities claim that neither knew about the “swine flu” outbreak until April 24. But after hundreds of residents of a town in Veracruz, Mexico, came down with its symptoms, the story had already hit the Mexican national press by April 5. The daily La Jornada reported:

Clouds of flies emanate from the rusty lagoons where the Carroll Ranches business tosses the fecal wastes of its pig farms, and the open-air contamination is already generating an epidemic of respiratory infections in the town of La Gloria, in the Perote Valley, according to Town Administrator Bertha Crisóstomo López.

The town has 3,000 inhabitants, hundreds of whom reported severe flu symptoms in March.

CNN’s Dr. Sanjay Gupta, reporting from Mexico, has identified a La Gloria child who contracted the first case of identified “swine flu” in February as “patient zero,” five-year-old Edgar Hernández, now a survivor of the disease.

By April 15 – nine days before Mexican federal authorities of the regime of President Felipe Calderon acknowledged any problem at all – the local daily newspaper, Marcha, reported that a company called Carroll Ranches was “the cause of the epidemic.”

La Jornada columnist Julio Hernández López connects the corporate dots to explain how the Virginia-based Smithfield Farms came to Mexico: In 1985, Smithfield Farms received what was, at the time, the most expensive fine in history – $12.6 million – for violating the US Clean Water Act at its pig facilities near the Pagan River in Smithfield, Virginia, a tributary that flows into the Chesapeake Bay. The company, according to the US Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) dumped hog waste into the river.

It was a case in which US environmental law succeeded in forcing a polluter, Smithfield Farms, to construct a sewage treatment plant at that facility after decades of using the river as a mega-toilet. But “free trade” opened a path for Smithfield Farms to simply move its harmful practices next door into Mexico so that it could evade the tougher US regulators.

The North American Free Trade Agreement (NAFTA) came into effect on January 1, 1994. That very same year Smithfield Farms opened the “Carroll Ranches” in the Mexican state of Veracruz through a new subsidiary corporation, “Agroindustrias de México.”

Unlike what law enforcers forced upon Smithfield Farms in the US, the new Mexican facility – processing 800,000 pigs into bacon and other products per year – does not have a sewage treatment plant.

According to Rolling Stone magazine, Smithfield slaughters an estimated 27 million hogs a year to produce more than six billion pounds of packaged pork products. (The Veracruz facility thus constitutes about three percent of its total production.)

Reporter Jeff Teitz reported in 2006 on the conditions in Smithfield’s US facilities (remember: what you are about to read describes conditions that are more sanitary and regulated than those in Mexico):

Smithfield’s pigs live by the hundreds or thousands in warehouse-like barns, in rows of wall-to-wall pens. Sows are artificially inseminated and fed and delivered of their piglets in cages so small they cannot turn around. Forty fully grown 250-pound male hogs often occupy a pen the size of a tiny apartment. They trample each other to death. There is no sunlight, straw, fresh air or earth. The floors are slatted to allow excrement to fall into a catchment pit under the pens, but many things besides excrement can wind up in the pits: afterbirths, piglets accidentally crushed by their mothers, old batteries, broken bottles of insecticide, antibiotic syringes, stillborn pigs—anything small enough to fit through the foot-wide pipes that drain the pits. The pipes remain closed until enough sewage accumulates in the pits to create good expulsion pressure; then the pipes are opened and everything bursts out into a large holding pond.

The temperature inside hog houses is often hotter than ninety degrees. The air, saturated almost to the point of precipitation with gases from shit and chemicals, can be lethal to the pigs. Enormous exhaust fans run twenty-four hours a day. The ventilation systems function like the ventilators of terminal patients: If they break down for any length of time, pigs start dying.

Consider what happens when such forms of massive pork production move to unregulated territory where Mexican authorities allow wealthy interests to do business without adequate oversight, abusing workers and the environment both. And there it is: The violence wrought by NAFTA in clear and understandable human terms.

The so-called “swine flu” exploded because an environmental disaster simply moved (and with it, took jobs from US workers) to Mexico where environmental and worker safety laws, if they exist, are not enforced against powerful multinational corporations.

False mental constructs of borders – the kind that cause US and Mexican citizens alike to imagine a flu strain like this one invading their nations from other lands – are taking a long overdue hit by the current “swine flu” media frenzy. In this case, US-Mexico trade policy created a time bomb in Veracruz that has already murdered more than 150 Mexican citizens, and at least one child in the US, by creating a gigantic Petri dish in the form pig farms to generate bacon and ham for international sale.

None of that indicates that this flu strain was born in Mexico, but, rather, that the North American Free Trade Agreement created the optimal conditions for the flu to gestate and become, at minimum, epidemic in La Gloria and, now, Mexico City, and threatens to become international pandemic.

Welcome to the aftermath of “free trade.” Authorities now want you to grab a hospital facemask and avoid human contact until the outbreak hopefully blows over. And if you start to feel dizzy, or a flush with fever, or other symptoms begin to molest you or your children, remember this: The real name of this infirmity is “The NAFTA Flu,” the first of what may well emerge as many new illnesses to emerge internationally as the direct result of “free trade” agreements that allow companies like Smithfield Farms to escape health, safety and environmental laws.

Lea Ud. el Artículo en Español
Leia este artigo em português
Suspected epicentre of swine flu is CDM project

Published: 30 Apr 2009 14:28 CET Last updated: 30 Apr 2009 15:47 CET

A pig farm in Mexico claimed to be the source of swine flu is host to a UN-registered CDM project.

The clean development mechanism (CDM) project, which has not gone into operation, was to be developed by UK-listed Ecosecurities at a pig farm near the town of La Perote in Veracruz state.

Media reports have cited the farm as a possible source of swine flu that threatens to become a global pandemic.

However the plant’s owners and the Mexican government said there is no evidence for these claims, and the UN’s Food and Agriculture Organisation (FAO) is carrying out an investigation at the site.

“Depending on the outcome of the investigation from the FAO, it is feasible that, if it had been implemented, the project would have helped by improving waste management on the site,” said Belinda Kinkead, head of implementation of Ecosecurities.

Little impact

Kinkead said swine flu was unlikely to have a major impact on supply of credits - unless the Mexican government was to order a mass cull of pigs in order to prevent the spread of disease.

But so far the government shows few signs of doing this until a firm link is established between porcine and human influenza.

According to design documents, projects that capture animal waste in Mexico could supply around 23 million carbon credits from the Kyoto protocol's CDM between now and the end of 2012.

But the percentage of credits generated by the sector is typically only a quarter of that promised.

Of the 89 projects in the sector registered by the UN, just 16 projects have been issued with credits.

Ecosecurities has plans to develop 28 CDM projects in Mexico that cut methane emissions from pig waste, but only 10 have gone into operation, as the number of credits yielded by such projects is now so small as to render many of them unfeasible, Kinkead said.


Other investors in animal waste management systems (AWMS) include Agcert, a company that was formerly listed on the London Stock Exchange.

AES Agriverde, which now controls Agcert’s methane capture projects, said it couldn’t comment on the impact of swine flu on its Mexican operations because the company operates a media blackout in advance of declaring quarterly earnings.

Besides trying to sell CDM credits from projects developed by Agcert, the company aims to generate credits that could be sold in a future federal trading scheme in the US.

Only last week, before news of swine flu broke, a US developer Environmental Credit Corp said it would try and generate 200,000 CERs from methane capture projects in Mexico.

Cargill, a large US commodities trader, is also involved in methane capture CDM projects in Mexico, and is named as a participant in the La Perote project now being investigated by the FAO.

However, no one from the company was available to comment at press time.


Media outlets from across the world have reported claims by villagers close to the La Perote pig farm that flies feeding on animal waste at the facility had helped spread swine flu to the local human population.

The FAO has said so far there is no evidence that swine flu has spread directly from pigs to humans in this way.

At pig farms, companies such as Ecosecurities use technology known as an anaerobic digester to cover up lagoons of animal waste at pig farms and then generate electricity from the captured methane.

By John McGarrity -


Influenciad@s por la Influenza
Miedo y Seguridad Nacional

Nieves Capote Figueroa
Otros Mundos, AC
San Cristóbal de las Casas, Chiapas, México; 2 de mayo de 2009

¿Cómo puede paralizarse un país de más 100 millones de habitantes? Es una pregunta muy útil…sobre todo para quién se la está haciendo.

En la última semana hemos visto un ir y venir de cifras inexactas y cambiantes sobre los contagiados y muertos por la influenza porcina. El jueves 30 de abril en realidad ya no sabíamos de qué nos estaban hablando, primero que 176 muertos (sin especificar nada más), luego que en realidad eran 12 muertos y 358 infectados. Sin embargo, la OMS el mismo día hablaba de 156 infectados para México. Curiosamente, en otros casos, inmediatamente se proporcionan nombres, edades y origen de los fallecidos por accidentes, enfermedades, etcétera. En este caso es un silencio absoluto.... (Ver

On Tue, May 5, 2009 at 1:48 PM, wrote:

Table of contents:

1. [food_justice] What caused swine flu? - dorinda moreno

---------- Forwarded message ----------
From: dorinda moreno
To: Activist List , brownpolitics , 1planet1people_thetreesleepsintheseed <>, growing_foodandjustice
Date: Mon, 4 May 2009 12:13:31 -0700
Subject: [food_justice] What caused swine flu?
---------- Forwarded message ----------
From: "Alice Jay -"
Date: Mon, 04 May 2009 14:39:07 -0400
Subject: What caused swine flu?

Dear friends,

Evidence is emerging that traces swine flu to giant factory pig farms
that are dirty, dangerous, and inhumane. Sign the petition to the
World Health Organization to investigate and regulate these threats to
our health:

No-one yet knows whether swine flu will become a global pandemic, but
it is becoming clear where it came from – most likely a giant pig
factory farm run by an American multinational corporation in Veracruz,

These factory farms are disgusting and dangerous, and they're rapidly
multiplying. Thousands of pigs are brutally crammed into dirty
warehouses and sprayed with a cocktail of drugs -- posing a health
risk to more than just our food -- they are the perfect conditions to
breed dangerous new viruses like swine flu. The World Health
Organization (WHO) must investigate and develop regulations for these
farms to protect global health.

Big agrobusiness will try to obstruct and scuttle any attempts at
reform, so we need a massive outcry that health authorities can't
ignore. Sign the petition below for investigation and regulation of
factory farms and we will deliver it with a herd of cardboard pigs to
the WHO. For every 100 petition signatures we will add a pig to the
herd, sign below and forward this email to friends and family:

Last week the flu was all that we talked about -- Mexico has been
nearly paralysed and across the world leaders halted air travel,
banned pork imports and initiated drastic controls to mitigate the
spreading virus. As the threat shows signs of subsiding the question
becomes where it came from and how we stop another outbreak.

Smithfield Corporation, the largest pig producer in the world whose
farm is being fingered as the source of the H1N1 outbreak, denies any
connection between their pigs and the flu and big agrobusiness
worldwide pays huge sums of money for research to argue that biosafety
is ensured in industrial hog production. But the WHO has been saying
for years that 'a new pandemic is inevitable'(2) and experts from the
European Commission and the UN Food and Agriculture Organisation have
warned that the rapid move from small holdings to industrial pig
production is in fact increasing the risk of development and
transmission of disease epidemics. (3)

Studies abound of the horrific conditions endured by pigs in
concentrated large-scale operations, and the devastating economic
impact on small farmer communities of bloated large-scale
operations.(4) Smithfield itself has already been fined $12.6m and is
currently under another federal investigation in the US for toxic
environmental damage from pig excrement lakes.(5)

But even with all of this damaging evidence, a combination of
increased global meat consumption and a powerful industry motivated by
profit at the cost of human health, means that instead of being shut
down - these sickening factory farm operations are propagating around
the world and we are subsidising them (6). In the wake of this swine
flu threat, let's hold industrial pig producers to account. Sign the
petition for investigation and regulation:

If we resolve this global health crisis boldly by reassessing our food
consumption and production, and urgently calling for an inquiry into
the impact of factory farms on human health, we could put in place
tough farm practice rules that will save the global population from
future animal borne lethal pandemics.

in hope,

Alice, Pascal, Graziela, Paul, Brett, Ben, Ricken, Iain, Paula, Luis,
Raj, Margaret, Taren and the whole Avaaz team

(1) Reports on the link between the Mexican factory farm and the flu:,0,1701782.story

(2) WHO pandemic information

(3) FAO report and CIWF press release citing European Commission Study
on the risks of industrial farming

(4) CIWF and PETA video reports of the disgusting conditions for
animals in factory farms and the disease ridden manure swamps:

(5) Reports on Smithfield's animal welfare and environmental damage

(6) Reports on UK tax payers subsidising factory farms


ABOUT AVAAZ is an independent, not-for-profit global
campaigning organization that works to ensure that the views and
values of the world's people inform global decision-making. (Avaaz
means "voice" in many languages.) Avaaz receives no money from
governments or corporations, and is staffed by a global team based in
Ottawa, London, Rio de Janeiro, New York, Buenos Aires, and Geneva.
Call us at: +1 888 922 8229 or +55 21 2509 0368 Click here to learn
more about our largest campaigns. Don't forget to check out our
Facebook and Myspace and Bebo pages!

To contact Avaaz, please do not reply to this email. Instead, write to You can also call us at +1-888-922-8229 (US) or +55 21
2509 0368 (Brazil) If you have technical problems, please go to

Dorinda Moreno
Elders of 4 Colors 4 Directions
Hitec Aztec Collaborations/FM Global
We Are the Ones We Have Been Waiting For!

End of digest for list growing_foodandjustice - Tue, 05 May 2009

S. Lorena Rodriguez
skype: lorerodlez
cell. 098.577.497

“There is another way to live and think: it’s called agrarianism. It is not so much a philosophy as a practice, an attitude, a loyalty and a passion—all based in close connection with the land. It results in a sound local economy in which producers and consumers are neighbors and in which nature herself becomes the standard for work and production.” --Wendell Berry
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Gaia Health: Anti-Education Intentionally Dumbs Down Americans

Gaia Health: Anti-Education Intentionally Dumbs Down Americans

Methinks the intentional dumbing down began during the Reagan Years. How successful it has been. Have you noticed the decline the the quality of intellectual conversation around your favorite coffee shop(s)? RZ

Raw Story » US interrogators may have killed dozens, human rights researcher and rights group say

Raw Story » US interrogators may have killed dozens, human rights researcher and rights group say

Friday, May 01, 2009

Tuesday, April 28, 2009

Tuesday, April 21, 2009

End the Fed!


For Immediate Release: April 21, 2009

Contact: Melissa Hill, 612-250-7178,

End the Fed Minneapolis hosts bank protest outside the Federal Reserve.

Activists demand an end to the robbing of the American people by the financial elite.

Minneapolis, MN— A broad-based coalition of local activists will speak out against the unsustainable economic policies promoted by the private Federal Reserve banking system in conjunction with other nationwide protests across the country on April 25th. During an unprecedented economic crisis, the Federal Reserve has funneled over $2 Trillion dollars to the big money center banks who own and operate the Fed so that those institutions could pay off their failed derivatives bets, buy up smaller banks and line the pockets of insiders with bonuses in the biggest heist in human history.

What: End the Fed Rally and March

When: Saturday, April 25, 2009. Rally begins at 12 p.m.

Where: Outside the Minneapolis Federal Reserve Building, - 90 Hennepin Ave.

Who: End the Fed Minneapolis with guest speakers and musical entertainment

About End the Fed – End the Fed ( is a nationwide nonpartisan coalition that calls for the repeal of the Federal Reserve Banking System. End the Fed Minneapolis ( is the local affiliate established in October of 2008 in preparation for the first major rally held on November 22, 2008.

Tuesday, April 14, 2009

the death of r&b bands?

Nice article from

Reuters:Recession fueling right-wing extremism

So does Democrat complacency in the face of obvious right-wing (white supremicist) US policies.

Monday, April 13, 2009

Obama eases Cuba travel restrictions

'bout fuckin' time.


"Obama throws a bone to the Left."

Tuesday, April 07, 2009

The Crash of '09, The Collapse of '10 --

The Crash of '09, The Collapse of '10

By Humayun Gauhar

April 07, 2009 "The Nation" --- Many American analysts are saying that America's real economic collapse could come by the end of this year. "It will come to be known as 'The Crash of 09', they say. Others, especially a Russian political analyst, are predicting its physical collapse too. There's no doubt that the country is up the dirtiest of imaginable creeks without a paddle. But what's amazing is that America remains mired in stunning denial, continuing to make bad situations worse with useless bailout plans and messing around with the world instead of facing up to the reality that its time as a hyper-power is up, that's its economic system has failed and that its only recourse is to end its adversarial doctrine and get out of its lost wars as painlessly and honorably as possible. There's no point in going on flogging dead horses. The only sensible thing that survival demands is to craft a new moral economic and financial system and a moral foreign policy.

The deep recession verging on depression that we have seen so far was caused by the crash in the US housing market. Since other developed industrialised nations, especially of Europe, were aping the shenanigans of unchecked and poorly regulated American bankers and financiers, the collapse of their markets, banks and economies followed like dominoes. Iceland was the first to officially declare bankruptcy. Its GDP is only about $6.5 billion but its banks had lent something like $65 billion while its regulators were asleep on the wheel. Britain has not declared bankruptcy officially but we all know that it is bankrupt for all intents and purposes and none of its banks and financial institutions has any legs left.

However, this is only the aperitif. Wait for the crash of US commercial real estate, which analysts think will happen by autumn this year. Shops are closing down and there's no one to rent them. Companies are retrenching and freeing up a lot of office space or closing down entirely and vacating even more precious office space with no one to rent it again. Huge skyscrapers are becoming ghost-scrapers. All this expensive commercial real estate is mortgaged to the hilt. With no rental income coming in, the loans against them will become difficult to service and there will be fearsome default. There's insurance and re-insurance here also and the amounts involved are mind-boggling. No bailout plan would come even close to coping. When the commercial real estate collapse comes, all hell will break loose. And if multinationals like General Motors and Ford call it a day, it won't just be thousands upon thousands of people unemployed (though its heartless to use the word 'just' here). Two entire towns will be become ghost towns. That's terrible. If you count the number of people - wives, children and parents - who are dependent on those incomes, it becomes worse than terrible. It becomes absolutely and totally unconscionable, while corrupt and greedy bankers and the likes of Bernie Madoff have made off with billions - perhaps trillions - of dollars and are still doing so because "our contracts say so."

Then there is Professor Igor Nikolavich Panarin whom I came across in a December 2008 article by Andrew Osborne of the Wall Street Journal no less, not some fly-by-night rag. If he has got it right, next year will come to be known as 'The Collapse of 2010' for that is when the USA will disintegrate into six separate entities. Those six entities, says Prof Panarin, are The California Republic, The Central North American Republic, Atlantic America, The Texas Republic, Hawaii and Alaska going back to Russia.

With millions of Chinese living on America's eastern seaboard (The People's Daily's circulation there alone is over five million) The California Republic, Prof Panarin thinks, will either be part of China or come under Chinese influence. The Central North American Republic will be part of Canada or under Canadian influence, Atlantic America may join the European Union, The Texas Republic will be part of Mexico or under Mexican influence and Hawaii will go either to Japan or China.

Prof Panarin is a former KGB analyst and a Russian professor of political science, Dean of the Ministry of the Foreign Affairs Diplomatic Academy in Moscow and author of several books on geopolitics. Thus one can hardly call him a fruitcake. Actually, he first made this prediction not after the economic meltdown that started last year but in Linz, Austria, in September 1998 in front of 400 delegates at a conference devoted to information warfare and the use of data to get an edge over a rival. Of course it was received with consternation. "When I pushed the button on my computer and the map of the United States disintegrated, hundreds of people cried out in surprise," he says. Later, many delegates asked him to sign copies of the map. Its like when the French political scientist Emmanuel Todd made his famous forecast in 1976 about the collapse of the Soviet Union 15 years before it actually did and many people laughed. But Todd had the last laugh.

Prof Panarin doesn't say that America's collapse is a forgone conclusion. "There's a 55-45 percent chance right now that disintegration will occur," he says. But if it comes it will be driven by three factors - "mass immigration, economic decline and moral degradation will trigger a civil war next fall and the collapse of the dollar. Around the end of June 2010, or early July, he says, the US will break into six pieces...He predicts that economic, financial and demographic trends will provoke a political and social crisis in the US. When the going gets tough, he says, wealthier states will withhold funds from the federal government and effectively secede from the Union. Social unrest up to and including a civil war will follow. The US will then split along ethnic lines, and foreign powers will move in." All we Pakistanis thus have to do is hang in there and soon America will not be meddling in our affairs any more, what to talk of General Patraeus's adviser David Kilcullen saying that Pakistan could fall apart in five or six months.

It's not easy to comprehend the collapse of an empire or a superpower. When termites are eating away at their vitals for years one cannot see it. People are too much in thrall of their power, wealth and panoply. Thus when the collapse comes it seems sudden, and takes people by surprise. "I went to sleep last night and when I woke up next morning the Soviet Union was gone." The most powerful war machine ever built couldn't save it. Remember the British Empire on which "the sun would never set"? It set so firmly that only six decades later Britain is not only bankrupt, it has become America's appendage, a third rate power and could itself disintegrate soon with Scotland seceding. The history of the world is replete with the demise of civilisations, empires and superpowers. The graveyards of nations are full of their bones.

That there may be something to what Prof Panarin says is borne out by the fact that the late Bush Administration made contingency plans to impose martial law in case of economic collapse or massive and violent social unrest with blood on the streets. His predictions seem plausible, even probable, if all the dire scenarios come right, as they have thus far. According to Rand Clifford the US has already made plans to "round up insurgent US citizens" and detain them in what are called "Rex 84" camps. Plus they have made "safe facilities" for members of Congress and their families. A report by the Phoenix Business Journal says: "A new report by the US Army and War College talks about the possibility of Pentagon resources and troops being used should the economic crisis lead to civil unrest, such as protests against businesses and government or runs on beleaguered banks." The Journal's story quote from the War College report: "Widespread civil violence inside the United States would force the defence establishment to reorient priorities in extremist to defend basic domestic order and human security." It needs saying that the military regularly makes plans for the most dire of situations, however seemingly unlikely.

Let Zbigniew Brzezinski, former National Security Advisor to President Jimmy Carter and an early supporter of Barack Obama have the last word. The US is "going to have millions and millions of unemployed people really facing dire straits. And we're going to be having that for some period of time before things hopefully improve. And at the same time there's public awareness of this extraordinary wealth that was transferred to a few individuals at levels without historical precedent in America...hell there could even be riots."

The writer is a senior political analyst -

Copyright The Nation

Wednesday, April 01, 2009

Terror as a tool of empire- ICH

Though I commend the slew of journalists who have taken to critical reporting of the USA's white supremacist, imperialist foreign policy, I can't help but think how useful this concern would have been twenty or thirty years ago. The national trajectory towards fascism didn't just begin with 9/11.

Monday, March 30, 2009

RNC8 supporters face continued state harassment

Editor's note: This is an update from our allies at CUAPB who have been instrumental in representing and raising awareness around the assault on our civil liberties and human rights in reference to the RNC/martial law exercise during Labor Day weekend. Protestors and community organizers are being harassed and targeted for intimidation by the Twin Cities 'law enforcement' community.

Groups Vow to Continue Defending the RNC 8 Despite Intimidation Attempts

Contact: Celia Kutz (Friends of the RNC 8),, 612.886.4565
Jude Ortiz (Community RNC Arrestee Support Structure),, 612.655.6904

Police conduct during last Saturday's community event in support of the
RNC 8­ - a group of protest organizers each facing four conspiracy and
terrorism charges - ­provided a startling glimpse into coordinated
multi-agency efforts to harass, intimidate and spy on community members
engaged in legal, First Amendment-protected activities. Just like the
charges against the RNC 8, the operation was a waste of scarce resources
in tough economic times.

At least 15 cities across the nation held events for the March 28, 2009
National Day of Solidarity with the RNC 8. In the Twin Cities, the Tour de
Fletcher bicycle ride visited the sites of last August's pre-emptive
police raids by Ramsey County Sheriff Bob Fletcher. Organizers advertised
the event as 100% legal and riders obeyed all traffic laws. Throughout
the ride, several Minneapolis police squad cars, bicycle cops, two paddy
wagons and a rented van full of more officers menaced the roughly 50
riders who participated. Two police officers wore black masks, making
them unidentifiable. One rider who attempted to leave the event was
arrested without any apparent justification and now faces charges of
disorderly conduct. The arrest appears to have been staged to justify the
massive police presence--and wasted taxpayer resources--at the peaceful,
lawful event. The arrested individual overheard his arresting officer
saying, "1 down, 39 to go" and an officer at the jail saying, "So how many
did you get?" as if authorities had planned a mass arrest.

Video of the event produced by Twin Cities Indymedia is available at:

Pictures from the event are available at:

Later in the day, even more officers and police cars, including the
unmarked vehicle of a St. Paul Police Commander, lined the streets at a
south Minneapolis church during a community lunch which was part of the
event. Officers photographed individuals as they entered the church and
recorded license plate numbers of cars outside. Although the upbeat
bicycle ride ended in Minneapolis, multiple squad cars with bicycles were
sighted afterwards at 951 Iglehart Avenue and were reported at 627 Smith
Avenue in St. Paul (sites of pre-emptive raids and listed as potential
stops on the ride), confirming the multi-agency nature of this effort.

"We've seen a definite increase in police harassment and spying at social
justice events since the RNC," states Michelle Gross, President of
Communities United Against Police Brutality. She adds, "Police have been
photographing participants, documenting license plates and even openly
harassing people who have broken no laws, especially in the last few

Despite police efforts, the March 28 event was a complete success with
many new people coming forward to show their support for the RNC 8. The
lunch raised significant funds for their legal defense. The previous day,
supporters delivered a petition with 3,000 signatures to prosecutor Susan
Gaertner demanding she drop the charges against the RNC 8. Organizers
stated this was only the first installment and that more signatures will
follow. The 17,000 member Duluth Central Labor Body also submitted a
support statement to Gaertner urging her to drop the charges, as did Don
Olson on behalf of the "Minnesota 8," well-known Vietnam-era draft
resisters. During the visit to Susan Gaertner, known undercover police
officers were again seen photographing activists.

Several organizations were responsible for planning the March 28 event and
these groups have vowed to continue their efforts in spite of police
harassment. They include Friends of the RNC 8, RNC 8 Defense Committee,
Communities United Against Police Brutality, Community RNC Arrestee
Support Structure (CRASS) and others.

Reports, including photos, from RNC 8 solidarity events can be found at