Reviving the Commons

A Perspective … in the end it’s all about disclosure & transparency

    A NEW YEAR’S RESOLUTION WHICH BENEFIT ALL OF US …
    MIGHT BE WORTH CONSIDERING …

Vision: Reviving the Commons — A Recipe for Political Optimism
By Jay Walljasper, AlterNet … Posted on December 20, 2010, Printed on December 31, 2010 … READ COMPLETE ARTICLE HERE … http://www.alternet.org/story/149268/

These are uneasy times for anyone who believes that “liberty and justice for all” still has meaning in modern America.

Triumphant Tea Partiers don their work gloves in anticipation of dismantling three generations of hard-won social progress on Capitol Hill and in the nation’s statehouses. The drumbeat throughout the media is that we have been recklessly profligate in social spending, and simply cannot afford to help the poor, heal the environment or invest in anything besides the Pentagon.

Progressives are understandably dazed. Some seem willing to trim back their values in the name of pragmatism. Others hesitate, but wonder how to express a message about our country’s future that resonates with everyday Americans.
Although political optimism appears hard to come by right now, I have found plenty of it in the course of writing and editing a new book All That We Share: A Field Guide to the Commons in collaboration with the commons movement strategy center On The Commons.

The commons — which means what we share together and how we share it, encompassing everything from water to the Internet to your neighborhood — is generating excitement among otherwise beleaguered activists. It offers a compelling new way to tackle familiar problems like economic inequity, environmental devastation and social alienation.

When seen through the lens of the commons, public services cannot be dismissed as “waste” nor basic matters of fairness reduced to “entitlements,” And it becomes clear the market is not the ideal framework to govern every aspect of human activity. The commons offers a fresh approach for understanding the most appropriate roles for government, civil society and the market in the complicated mechanism of today’s society.

Practical initiatives based on the principles of the commons hold promise for inspiring citizens (a/k/a commoners) to re-engage in social action as they seek common-sense solutions and opportunities. Even in fallow political times like these when we can’t expect much positive out of Washington, D.C., the emerging emphasis on what belongs to all of us can spark powerful projects at the grassroots level.

Here’s just a sampling of examples from All That We Share that point to a better future we have in common. The good life means more than private property — all of us have a stake in what we share together

THANK YOU FOR DRINKING THE “KOOL-AIDE” …

A Perspective … in the end it’s all about disclosure & transparency

    STILL BELIEVE THAT WIKILEAKS IS TERRORISTORGANIZATION…?

    YUP … THANK YOU FOR DRINKING THE “KOOL-AIDE” …

8 SMEARS & MISCONCEPTIONS ABOUT WIKILEAKS SPREAD BY CORPORATE OWNED MASS MEDIA …

By Julianne Escobedo Shepherd and Tana Ganeva, AlterNet …. Posted on December 31, 2010, Printed on December 31, 2010 .. read complete article here … http://www.alternet.org/story/149369/

The corporate media’s tendency to blare misinformation and outright fabrications has been particularly egregious in coverage of WikiLeaks. As Glenn Greenwald has argued, mainstream news outlets are parroting smears and falsehoods about the whistleblower site and its founder Julian Assange, helping to perpetuate a number of “zombie lies” — misconceptions that refuse to die no matter how much they conflict with known reality, basic logic and well-publicized information.

Here are the bogus narratives that keep appearing in newspapers and on the airwaves.

1. Fearmongering that WikiLeaks revelations will result in deaths. So far there’s no evidence that WikiLeaks’ revelations have cost lives. In fact, right before the cables were released, Pentagon officials admitted there were no documented instances of people being killed because of information exposed by WikiLeaks’ previous document releases (and unlike the diplomatic cables, the Afghanistan files were unredacted).

That’s not to say that the exposure of secret government files can’t somehow lead to someone, somewhere, someday, being hurt. But that’s a pretty high bar to set, especially by a government engaged in multiple military operations — many of them secret — that lead to untold civilian casualties.

2. Spreading the lie that WikiLeaks posted all the cables. WikiLeaks has posted fewer than 2,000 of the 251,287 cables in its possession. The whistleblower released those documents in tandem with major news outlets including the Guardian, El Pais and Le Monde, and used most of the redactions employed by those papers to protect the identities of people whose lives could be endangered by exposure. The AP detailed this process in a December 3 article, but this did not stop officials and pundits from howling that WikiLeaks “indiscriminately” dumped all the cables online. Much of the media mindlessly repeated the claim.
Greenwald and others have battled to kill the myth that the whistleblower site threw up all the cables without taking any precautions to protect people, but it keeps coming up. Just this week NPR issued an apology for all the times contributors and guests have implied or outright voiced the falsehood that WikiLeaks blindly posted all the cables at once.

3. Falsely claiming that Assange has committed a crime regarding WikiLeaks. The State Department is working really hard to pin a crime on Julian Assange. The problem is that so far he doesn’t appear to have broken any laws. Assange is not a U.S. citizen, he does not work for the U.S. government, and the documents WikiLeaks posted were procured by someone else. As Greenwald has repeatedly pointed out, it’s not against the law to publish classified U.S. government information. If it were, hundreds of journalists would be in prison right now.

While the government tries to conjure up a legal justification for prosecuting Assange, the media is helping out by fanning the narrative that he’s some criminal mastermind. Major outlets continue to host guests who accuse Assange of criminal behavior without quite specifying what his crime is. In a much derided CNN debate between Bush Homeland Security adviser Fran Townsend and Glenn Greenwald hosted by Jessica Yellin, Greenwald had to repeatedly bat away the assertion that Assange has “profited” from “criminal” acts.

The effort to tar Assange as a criminal — spearheaded by government officials and helped along by the media — may have a chilling effect on future whistleblowers.

4. Denying that WikiLeaks is a journalistic enterprise. Public officials and pundits continue to claim that WikiLeaks is not a journalistic outlet, even though it procured the scoop of a decade. But much of what WikiLeaks does is identical to the activities of other news sources. WikiLeaks receives secrets from anonymous sources, which it then reveals to the public — news is nothing if not a checks and balances system for the government, a fundamental right of a free press. Secondly, it curates those secrets before revealing them — a journalist selecting relevant and appropriate material from a confidential document is not that different from WikiLeaks redacting certain parts of the cables.

Because WikiLeaks’ actions fall under the First Amendment, all journalists should be outraged if the American government attempts to prosecute.

If WikiLeaks is prosecuted for conducting a journalistic enterprise, what rights will be stripped from journalists in the future? One of the most respected journalistic institutions in the world, the Columbia University Graduate School of Journalism, is speaking out. Earlier this month, 20 faculty members drafted and signed a letter to President Obama and Attorney General Eric Holder saying that WikiLeaks’ prosecution will set a “dangerous precedent for reporters in any publication or medium, potentially chilling investigative journalism and other First Amendment-protected activity … Prosecution in the Wikileaks case would greatly damage American standing in free-press debates worldwide and would dishearten those journalists looking to this nation for inspiration.”

The Walkley Foundation, an institution of journalism in Assange’s home of Australia, put it more succinctly in its own letter of support for WikiLeaks: “To aggressively attempt to shut WikiLeaks down, to threaten to prosecute those who publish official leaks, and to pressure companies to cease doing commercial business with WikiLeaks, is a serious threat to democracy, which relies on a free and fearless press.”

5. Denying a link between Ellsberg’s Pentagon Papers and WikiLeaks, despite Ellsberg’s support of the site. In 1969, Daniel Ellsberg secretly photocopied classified documents that proved the Johnson administration had lied to the American public about the chances of winning the Vietnam War, which it knew from the beginning were slim to none. By 1970, Ellsberg had become disillusioned with the desperate situation and began circulating the documents, first to U.S. senators, then to the New York Times, which reported the contents in a groundbreaking series of articles that set in motion the end to the war…and the Nixon administration. By doing so, he helped end an unjust war carried out in the name of the American people. His actions are widely heralded.

In a parallel scenario, WikiLeaks is acting the part of the Times and other outlets that reported the Pentagon Papers — releasing information of secret, and in many cases, unjust actions carried out in the name of the American people without our knowledge. Alleged leaker Bradley Manning is the Ellsberg in this situation; similarly, if chats between himself and Adrian Lamo printed in Wired are true, he unleashed the cables out of an overwhelming sense of justice, saying, “I want people to see the truth regardless of who they are because without information, you cannot make informed decisions as a public.”

Earlier this month, Ellsberg appeared on the Colbert Report and praised Manning. “If Bradley Manning did what he’s accused of, then he’s a hero of mine and I think he did a great service to this country,” said Ellsberg. “We’re not in the mess we’re in, in the world, because of too many leaks….I say there should be some secrets. But I also say we invaded Iraq illegally because of a lack of a Bradley Manning at that time.”

6. Accusing Assange of profiting from WikiLeaks. Newspapers this week led with reports that Assange has signed a lucrative book deal, information that inspired mainstream outlets like CNN to mock Assange for “profiting” from the cables despite his anti-corporate ideology. In the CNN interview mentioned above, Jessica Yellin asked Glenn Greenwald if he had “Any qualms about the fact that he is essentially profiting from classified information.” Greenwald pointed out that Assange is hardly profiting from the leaked materials, but rather trying to make a dent in the legal fees he’s accruing as governments around the world go after him. Greenwald also pointed out that trying to make money from journalism is pretty routine in the profession. Bob Woodward, for example, has written multiple books based on classified documents.

7. Calling Assange a terrorist. Last week Vice-President Joe Biden, part of an administration that’s overseen the escalation of the disastrous war in Afghanistan, joined Mitch McConnell and Sarah Palin in calling Assange a “terrorist.”
As far as we know, Assange’s leaks haven’t killed anyone. Nor has he threatened to perpetrate violence to promote a political agenda, the definition of terrorism. Nevertheless public officials continue to try to link Assange to terrorism in the public consciousness.

8. Minimizing the significance of the cables. Even though only a tiny fraction of the cables have been released, many critics promote the idea that they reveal “nothing new” and are therefore of no value. But even the cables released so far have contained important revelations about the U.S. and its allies.

Here are just a few of the stories revealed by the documents:
— U.S. special forces working inside Pakistan
— UK agreed to shield U.S. interests in Iraq probe
— Secret bombings of Yemen
— State Department role in the Honduran coup
— U.S. pressured Spain to drop Bush torture probe
— U.S. sought to retaliate against Europe over refusing to allow Monsanto GM crops
— Drug Enforcement Agency goes global, beyond drugs
— Shell’s grip on the Nigerian state
The promise that the next release will target a U.S. bank, and that it will have an effect similar to the Enron disclosures, according to Assange, certainly portends that the trove of information we haven’t yet seen could be explosive. And that is incredibly valuable to the American public.

We have to find our voice … as only “we” can stop GMO proliferation of our food …

A Perspective … in the end it’s all about disclosure & transparency

    What part of Congress and their corporate owners … “big” AG and “big” pharma … ain’t going to STOP … GMO contamination of organic crops

    And in fact will enact laws … rules … making the Organics accountable and liable to the Mon$anto’s of the world …

    We have to find our voice … as only “we” can stop GMO proliferation of our food …

      Stop GMO Contamination of Organic!
      So far, 29,210 OCA activists have written Obama’s USDA, urging Secretary Vilsack to give up his idea of “coexistence” between GMOs and organic.

      “Coexistence” will inevitably lead to GMOs contaminating organic crops and destroying the organic seed supply. Instead, Vilsack should:

      o Block Monsanto’s new GM alfalfa and any other GM crop that isn’t fully safety-tested

      o Implement a strict-liability, polluter-pays rule that holds Monsanto responsible for the harms their GM crops and herbicides cause farmers, farm workers, the environment and consumers

      o Require all Frankenfoods tainted with Monsanto’s GMOs and chemicals to be labeled.

        Please write to the USDA to tell them what you think of their new Environmental Impact Statement on GM alfalfa before the comment period ends on January 23, 2011.

You mean to say that “green washing” has a price

A Perspective … in the end it’s all about disclosure & transparency

    You mean to say that “green washing” has a price which corporate greed must pay…???

    Fiji Water Targeted by Class Action Lawsuit for Lying About Their Green Credo

Looks like Fiji Water has stepped in it again. Just last month the company announced they were shutting down operations in Fiji because the government was proposing a tax hike on bottling (they are exempt from paying income tax) and then a day later they did a quick about-face and re-opened deciding, I guess, that they could still make an extremely handsome profit from the bottled water racket.

Now, the company is apparently the target of a class-action lawsuit, Treehugger reported. It seems that Fiji Water has been trying to separate themselves from the competition by claiming that their water (in a plastic bottle, shipped around the world) is actually really green.

    So green in fact that it is entirely carbon negative.

But a lawsuit from Newport Trial Group claims otherwise. Environmental Leader has the details: According to the complaint,

Fiji Water Company has gained significant market share from its carbon negative claim:
“This case is very simple: Defendants convince consumers to buy their “FIJI” brand of bottled water – and to pay more for FIJI than for competing brands -by advertising and labeling FIJI as “The World’s Only CARBON NEGATIVE bottled water”.

In other words, Defendants claim that they remove more carbon pollution from our atmosphere than they release into it. In reality, however, FIJI water is not “Carbon Negative.” Instead, Defendants justify this claim by employing a discredited carbon accounting method known as “forward crediting.”

Thus, Defendants do not remove more carbon pollution than they create; they simply claim credit for carbon removal that may or may not take place – up to several decades in the future.”

In other words their claims of carbon negativity look like a lot of smoke and mirrors. This is not shocking if you know a bit about how the company does business (hint: it’s not pretty — check out this awesome piece by Anna Lenzer for the details).

Ironically, Fiji Water has been short-listed by the U.S. State Department for a Corporate Excellence Award — which is beginning to look about as laughable as Fiji Water’s environmental credo

DISCLOSURE … IS ONE THING … TAKING ACTION TO ELIMINATE IT IS A TOTALLY DIFFERENT CHALLENGE …

A Perspective … in the end it’s all about disclosure & transparency

    DISCLOSURE … IS ONE THING … TAKING ACTION TO ELIMINATE IT IS A TOTALLY DIFFERENT CHALLENGE …

    SO WHAT IS IT YOU WANT TO SEE HAPPEN … AND WHAT CONTRIBUTION WILL YOU MAKE …


11 Things You Need to Know About the Carcinogen Discovered in Drinking Water … By Rebecca Sutton, AlterNet …Posted on December 22, 2010, Printed on December 31, 2010 … READ COMPLETE ARTICLE HERE … http://www.alternet.org/story/149304/

When you see news reports about a cancer-causing chemical in drinking water everywhere you turn, you probably have a few questions. Of course you can read EWG’s full report, but on the off chance you’re pressed for time and just want to know the basics, we put together these 11 questions and answers.

1. What is hexavalent chromium?
Hexavalent chromium (or chromium-6) is a highly toxic form of the naturally occurring metal chromium. It is a well-known human carcinogen when inhaled, and recent evidence indicates it can cause stomach or gastrointestinal cancer when ingested in drinking water. However, a different form, trivalent chromium, is an essential nutrient. … (MY INSERT … want to get some idea of what Hexavalent Chromium is and what it can do … watch … Erin Brockovich … PGE … $330) million

People typically are exposed to chromium-6 by consuming contaminated water or food, and in some workplaces by breathing contaminated air. That’s a concern especially for those working in metallurgy or leather-tanning facilities. Ingesting or inhaling contaminated soil particles may also be a source of exposure. Widespread industrial use has led to detections of hexavalent chromium in two-thirds of current or former Superfund toxic waste sites.

2. How does it get into tap water?
Chromium-6 can get into water as a result of industrial contamination from manufacturing facilities, including electroplating factories, leather tanneries and textile manufacturing facilities, or from disposal of fluids used before 1990 in cooling towers. It also occurs naturally in some minerals. The widely used tap water disinfectant chlorine can transform trivalent chromium into the toxic hexavalent form.

3. Why is it a problem?

Exposure in tap water has been linked to cancers of the stomach and gastrointestinal tract in both animals and people. California’s Environmental Protection Agency has issued a draft public health goal based on the conclusion that levels of chromium-6 greater than 0.06 parts per billion (ppb) in tap water may increase cancer risk.

Some people may be especially susceptible. Fetuses, infants and children are more sensitive to carcinogenic chemicals. In addition, people with less acidic stomachs appear to have a limited ability to convert chromium-6 to the benign trivalent form (chromium-3), putting them at greater risk. Using common antacids and proton pump inhibitors can lower stomach acidity.

Other conditions that can inhibit stomach acid production include infection with Helicobacter pylori (a common bacterium linked to ulcers), pernicious anemia, pancreatic tumors, mucolipidosis type IV and some autoimmune diseases.

4. How can I find out if my tap water has hexavalent chromium in it?
California requires water utilities to test and report levels of chromium-6 in their water. For Californians, this is a good way to find out if this contaminant is a concern in your area. Unfortunately, these tests only measure levels at or above 1 ppb, more than 16 times above the suggested public health goal of 0.06 ppb.

Of the 438 community water sources in California that have provided test data to EWG, 223 detected levels above 1 ppb, and 93 detected levels above 5 ppb. This means more than 13.7 million Californians drink tap water contaminated with chromium-6.
Elsewhere, water utilities only test and report levels of total chromium — which includes both the toxic form and the essential nutrient chromium-3. Moreover, these tests only detect levels at or above 10 ppb, more than 160 times higher than California’s proposed public health goal.

If your tap water has detectable levels of total chromium, it’s quite possible that it has levels of hexavalent chromium that exceed California’s suggested public health goal. The ratio of chromium-3 to chromium-6 varies in different water supplies, so it is difficult to estimate how much of each might be in your water.

Contact your local water utility or check EWG’s tap water database to learn if chromium has been detected in your tap water. … ( MY INSERT … But do not expect your water purveyor to provide you with FULL DISCLOSURE as they only test your water for those residuals which they choose … you have NO voice in what they test for or how often or in what manner or how “safe” is determined) ….

5. My tap water has high levels of chromium-6. What should I do?
If your tap water contains high levels, your best bet is to install a reverse osmosis filter certified to remove it. Reverse osmosis filters, especially when combined with superior carbon filter technology, are the best way to remove the largest number of contaminants.
EWG assembled a list of reverse osmosis water filters certified to remove hexavalent chromium and available for purchase on Amazon.com.

See EWG’s water filter buying guide for more information on how to choose a water filter.

While drinking bottled water might seem like a good way to avoid exposing yourself to hexavalent chromium in tap water, there is no guarantee that bottled water has lower concentrations of this contaminant. If you drink bottled water, choose brands that provide water quality information indicating their water has levels of chromium-6 below 0.06 ppb or that use reverse osmosis filtration to treat their water.
Because infants can be especially sensitive to carcinogenic chemicals, it is particularly important to use safer water when preparing infant formula. Water treated with a reverse osmosis filter will contain fewer contaminants and be safer for babies than bottled water.

6. Can I test my own tap water for chromium-6?
Most commercial water quality laboratories do not offer this test. … (MY INSERT … they don’t because EPA and your local water purveyor does NOT require them to)

7. Besides drinking water, how else can I be exposed?

Other sources of exposure to hexavalent chromium include contaminated food and contaminated workplace air, especially for those working in metallurgy or leather-tanning facilities. Contaminated soil particles may also be a source of exposure via ingestion or inhalation. Widespread industrial use has led to detections of chromium-6 in two-thirds of current or former Superfund sites…. (MY INSERT … HEY … but not to worry your Congre$$ jst got through passing is vaunted S510 … Food Safety Act … and thanks to Mon$anto … we believe)

8. Are some people more vulnerable to the effects?
Yes. Fetuses, infants, and children have a higher sensitivity to carcinogenic chemicals. Their developing organ systems are more susceptible to damage from chemical exposures, and less able to detoxify and excrete chemicals.

In addition, people with less acidic stomachs appear to have a limited ability to convert chromium-6 to chromium-3, exposing them to higher levels of the toxic form and putting them at greater risk. Using common antacids and proton pump inhibitors can reduce stomach acidity. Other conditions that can inhibit stomach acid production include infection with Helicobacter pylori (a common bacterium linked to ulcers), pernicious anemia, pancreatic tumors, mucolipidosis type IV and some autoimmune diseases.

9. What other chemicals in my tap water should I be concerned about?
Check out EWG’s tap water database for an in-depth look at water contaminants, including drinking water quality information for 48,000 communities in 45 states and the District of Columbia. .. (MY INSERT … man has developed more than 118,000 new chemicals and compounds most of which have found their way into our air … water … food chain … but hey EPA owned Mon$santo says is A-OK)

10. What is EPA doing to promote safe drinking water?
Not enough. In the case of hexavalent chromium, the EPA has taken no specific action to limit amounts in drinking water. The agency has left in place an inadequate standard for total chromium, set nearly 20 years ago. It does not distinguish between toxic hexavalent and nutritionally essential trivalent chromium and cites “allergic dermatitis” as the only health concern. The agency has not set a new, enforceable drinking water standard for any contaminant since 2001. … MY INSERT … man has developed more than our corporate owned Congre$$ will allow it to … NOTHING …

Recently, however, the federal government has begun to focus a critical eye on chromium-6 and other water contaminants. EWG recommends that the EPA set a legal limit for hexavalent chromium in drinking water as quickly as possible and require water utility testing to assess exposures nationwide.

11. Is bottled water a safe alternative? MY INSERT … only if you honestly believe there is TRUTH in their labels … I damn sure don’t …

Drinking bottled water might seem like a good way to avoid exposing yourself to hexavalent chromium, but there is no guarantee that bottled water contains less of this contaminant. Furthermore, there is no legal limit for chromium-6 in bottled water, so consumers cannot assume it is free of it. EWG has assessed bottled water quality and the industry’s labeling practices and isn’t impressed with either. If you drink bottled water, choose brands that provide water quality information indicating that the water has less than 0.06 ppb of chromium-6 or that use reverse osmosis filtration to purify it. Overall, test results strongly indicate that the purity of bottled water cannot be trusted. As EWG’s Jane Houlihan says,
“It’s buyer beware with bottle water. The bottled water industry promotes its products as pure and healthy, but our tests show that pollutants in some popular brands match the levels found in some of the nation’s most polluted big city tap water systems. Consumers can’t trust that what’s in the bottle is anything more than processed, pricey tap water.” Plus, there’s all that plastic waste. … Rebecca Sutton, Ph D, is an EWG Senio

News … Propaganda … $pin … provide equal truth in America

    HOW OBJECTIVE & HONEST CAN WHAT PASSES AS NEWS BE…?
    … America’s journey … corporate mass media ownership concentration …
    NOT INCLUDING THE CURRENT PROPOSED NBC/COMCAST MERGER
    Who owns CNN … MSNB … ABC … CBS … FOX …

GENERAL ELECTRIC –(donated 1.1 million to GW Bush for his 2000 election campaign)

Television Holdings:
* NBC: includes 13 stations, 28% of US households.
* NBC Network News: The Today Show, Nightly News with Tom Brokaw, Meet the Press, Dateline NBC, NBC News at Sunrise.
* CNBC business television; MSNBC 24-hour cable and Internet news service (co-owned by NBC and Microsoft); Court TV (co-owned with Time Warner), Bravo (50%), A&E (25%), History Channel (25%).
The “MS” in MSNBC
means microsoft
The same Microsoft that donated 2.4 million to get GW bush elected.

Other Holdings:
* GE Consumer Electronics.
* GE Power Systems: produces turbines for nuclear reactors and power plants.
* GE Plastics: produces military hardware and nuclear power equipment.
* GE Transportation Systems: runs diesel and electric trains.

==================================================

WESTINGHOUSE / CBS INC.
Westinghouse Electric Company, part of the Nuclear Utilities Business Group of British Nuclear Fuels (BNFL)
whos #1 on the Board of Directors? None other than:
Frank Carlucci (of the Carlyle Group)

Television Holdings:
* CBS: includes 14 stations and over 200 affiliates in the US.
* CBS Network News: 60 minutes, 48 hours, CBS Evening News with Dan Rather, CBS Morning News, Up to the Minute.
* Country Music Television, The Nashville Network, 2 regional sports networks.
* Group W Satellite Communications.
Other Holdings:
* Westinghouse Electric Company: provides services to the nuclear power industry.
* Westinghouse Government Environmental Services Company: disposes of nuclear and hazardous wastes. Also operates 4 government-owned nuclear power plants in the US.
* Energy Systems: provides nuclear power plant design and maintenance.

================================================================

VIACOM INTERNATIONAL INC.
Television Holdings:
* Paramount Television, Spelling Television, MTV, VH-1, Showtime, The Movie Channel, UPN (joint owner), Nickelodeon, Comedy Central, Sundance Channel (joint owner), Flix.
* 20 major market US stations.
Media Holdings:
* Paramount Pictures, Paramount Home Video, Blockbuster Video, Famous Players Theatres, Paramount Parks.
* Simon & Schuster Publishing.

=============================================

DISNEY / ABC / CAP (donated 640 thousand to GW’s 2000 campaign)
Television Holdings:
* ABC: includes 10 stations, 24% of US households.
* ABC Network News: Prime Time Live, Nightline, 20/20, Good Morning America.
* ESPN, Lifetime Television (50%), as well as minority holdings in A&E, History Channel and E!
* Disney Channel/Disney Television, Touchtone Television.
Media Holdings:
* Miramax, Touchtone Pictures.
* Magazines: Jane, Los Angeles Magazine, W, Discover.
* 3 music labels, 11 major local newspapers.
* Hyperion book publishers.
* Infoseek Internet search engine (43%).
Other Holdings:
* Sid R. Bass (major shares) crude oil and gas.
* All Disney Theme Parks, Walt Disney Cruise Lines.

======================================================

TIME-WARNER TBS – AOL (donated 1.6 million to GW’s 2000 campaign)
America Online (AOL) acquired Time Warner–the largest merger in corporate history.
Television Holdings:
* CNN, HBO, Cinemax, TBS Superstation, Turner Network Television, Turner Classic Movies, Warner Brothers Television, Cartoon Network, Sega Channel, TNT, Comedy Central (50%), E! (49%), Court TV (50%).
* Largest owner of cable systems in the US with an estimated 13 million subscribers.
Media Holdings:
* HBO Independent Productions, Warner Home Video, New Line Cinema, Castle Rock, Looney Tunes, Hanna-Barbera.
* Music: Atlantic, Elektra, Rhino, Sire, Warner Bros. Records, EMI, WEA, Sub Pop (distribution) = the world’s largest music company.
* 33 magazines including Time, Sports Illustrated, People, In Style, Fortune, Book of the Month Club, Entertainment Weekly, Life, DC Comics (50%), and MAD Magazine.
Other Holdings:
* Sports: The Atlanta Braves, The Atlanta Hawks, World Championship Wrestling.

=======================================================

NEWS CORPORATION LTD. / FOX NETWORKS (Rupert Murdoch) (donations see bottom note)
Television Holdings:
* Fox Television: includes 22 stations, 50% of US households.
* Fox International: extensive worldwide cable and satellite networks include British Sky Broadcasting (40%); VOX, Germany (49.9%); Canal Fox, Latin America; FOXTEL, Australia (50%); STAR TV, Asia; IskyB, India; Bahasa Programming Ltd., Indonesia (50%); and News Broadcasting, Japan (80%).
* The Golf Channel (33%).
MEDIA HOLDINGS:
* Twentieth Century Fox, Fox Searchlight.
* 132 newspapers (113 in Australia alone) including the New York Post, the London Times and The Australian.
* 25 magazines including TV Guide and The Weekly Standard.
* HarperCollins books.
OTHER HOLDINGS:
* Sports: LA Dodgers, LA Kings, LA Lakers, National Rugby League.
* Ansett Australia airlines, Ansett New Zealand airlines.
* Rupert Murdoch: Board of Directors, Philip Morris (USA).

*(Phillip Morris donated 2.9 million to George W Bush in 2000)*

REPORTED BY … systemfailure Wednesday, Apr. 09, 2003 at 1:43 AM

ODE TO 2010

      Ode to 2010

        Year 2010
        Quickly turns its back to us
        Departing in rather rebellious form
        In its wake
        A landscape littered
        With myriad of issues
        Unasked … Unresolved
        Left to fester
        A rotting stench fills the air
        As we usher in
        Year … Two … O … one … one … 2011

        2010 did one thing
        Quite effectively
        Separate it did
        America’s answer to
        “Royalty”
        Those self-anointed few
        An elite
        Those self-deemed
        In control
        Who from behind closed doors securely locked
        With curtains tightly drawn
        Pull the strings of those
        We blindly thought
        Duly elected … “to serve & to protect” …
        US … that’s you & me

        Thanks to Chief Justice John Roberts’
        U$ $upreme Court
        These few “corporatist”
        And their corporate confederates
        Interest$ are now our Justices deemed # 1
        While the many … those of us they choose to catalog as “average”
        Relegated to a realty
        A throw back to that point in our history
        Reflecting the brutality of master-slave
        Social as well as economic times

        Rights once thought sovereign
        Now controlled by them
        Parsed out as they deem
        Benefits them
        To you and me

        Our voices stilled
        Through years and years
        These corporatists
        Adroitly used
        Vile propaganda
        Adeptly veiled through the use of
        FEAR
        Our voice cunningly taken
        While our eye … attention too …
        Ingeniously diverted to watch
        The game of the day
        Dancing with the stars
        Reality TV
        And the lies from FoxNews “talking” heads

        Who thanks to our judicial system
        Now authorized and define for us
        What is news…?
        What is true…?
        Did you know that…??

        Political leaders of every color and stripe
        See courtesy but a thing of the past
        Finger pointing
        Blaming … Shaming
        Name calling … Cursing
        Hurling vitriolic statements
        Unthinkingly … Mistakenly
        Disingenuously
        And so ends year 2010
        Leading to the door
        Opening year 2011

FYI … perspective offered without comment …

A Perspective … in the end it’s all about disclosure & transparency

    FYI … perspective offered without comment …

News Link • New World Order
Report from Iron Mountain; using fear to make people subservient to government.

12-29-2010 • Farm Wars … READ COMPLETE ARTICLE … http://farmwars.info/?p=4881

… It may be, for instance, that gross pollution of the environment can eventually replace the possibility of mass destruction by nuclear weapons as the principal apparent threat to the survival of the species. Poisoning of the air, and of the principal sources of food and water supply, is already well advanced, and at first glance would seem promising in this respect; it constitutes a threat that can be dealt with only through social organization and political power. … It is true that the rate of pollution could be increased selectively for this purpose. … But the pollution problem has been so widely publicized in recent years that it seems highly improbable that a program of deliberate environmental poisoning could be implemented in a politically acceptable manner.

© 2002 by G. Edward Griffin … Freedom Force International …

The substance of these stratagems [for the weakening of the United States so it can be more easily merged into a global government based on the model of collectivism] can be traced to a think-tank study released in 1966 called the Report from Iron Mountain. Although the origin of the report is highly debated, the document itself hints that it was commissioned by the Department of Defense under Defense Secretary, Robert McNamara and was produced by the Hudson Institute located at the base of Iron Mountain in Croton-on-Hudson, New York. The Hudson Institute was founded and directed by Herman Kahn, formerly of the Rand Corporation. Both McNamara and Kahn were members of the CFR.

The self-proclaimed purpose of the study was to explore various ways to “stabilize society.” Praiseworthy as that may sound, a reading of the Report soon reveals that the word society is used synonymously with the word government. Furthermore, the word stabilize is used as meaning to preserve and to perpetuate. It is clear from the start that the nature of the study was to analyze the different ways a government can perpetuate itself in power, ways to control its citizens and prevent them from rebelling. It was stated at the beginning of the Report that morality was not an issue. The study did not address questions of right or wrong; nor did it deal with such concepts as freedom or human rights. Ideology was not an issue, nor patriotism, nor religious precepts. Its sole concern was how to perpetuate the existing government.

The Report said:
Previous studies have taken the desirability of peace, the importance of human life, the superiority of democratic institutions, the greatest “good” for the greatest number, the “dignity” of the individual, the desirability of maximum health and longevity, and other such wishful premises as axiomatic values necessary for the justification of a study of peace issues. We have not found them so.

We have attempted to apply the standards of physical science to our thinking, the principal characteristic of which is not quantification, as is popularly believed, but that, in Whitehead’s words, “…it ignores all judgments of value; for instance, all esthetic and moral judgments.”

(1)
The major conclusion of the report was that, in the past, war has been the only reliable means to achieve that goal. It contends that only during times of war or the threat of war are the masses compliant enough to carry the yoke of government without complaint. Fear of conquest and pillage by an enemy can make almost any burden seem acceptable by comparison. War can be used to arouse human passion and patriotic feelings of loyalty to the nation’s leaders. No amount of sacrifice in the name of victory will be rejected. Resistance is viewed as treason. But, in times of peace, people become resentful of high taxes, shortages, and bureaucratic intervention. When they become disrespectful of their leaders, they become dangerous.

No government has long survived without enemies and armed conflict. War, therefore, has been an indispensable condition for “stabilizing society.” These are the report’s exact words:
The war system not only has been essential to the existence of nations as independent political entities, but has been equally indispensable to their stable political structure.

Without it, no government has ever been able to obtain acquiescence in its “legitimacy,” or right to rule its society. The possibility of war provides the sense of external necessity without which no government can long remain in power.

The historical record reveals one instance after another where the failure of a regime to maintain the credibility of a war threat led to its dissolution, by the forces of private interest, of reactions to social injustice, or of other disintegrative elements.

The organization of society for the possibility of war is its principal political stabilizer…. It has enabled societies to maintain necessary class distinctions, and it has insured the subordination of the citizens to the state by virtue of the residual war powers inherent in the concept of nationhood.

(2)
A NEW DEFINITION OF PEACE .. The report then explains that we are approaching a point in history where the old formulas may no longer work. Why? Because it may now be possible to create a world government in which all nations will be disarmed and disciplined by a world army, a condition which will be called peace. The report says: “The word peace, as we have used it in the following pages, … implies total and general disarmament.”

(3)
Under that scenario, independent nations will no longer exist and governments will not have the capability to wage war. There could be military action by the world army against renegade political subdivisions, but these would be called peace-keeping operations, and soldiers would be called peace keepers. No matter how much property is destroyed or how much blood is spilled, the bullets will be “peaceful” bullets and the bombs – even atomic bombs, if necessary – will be “peaceful” bombs.

The report then raises the question of whether there can ever be a suitable substitute for war. What else could the regional governments use – and what could the world government itself use – to legitimize and perpetuate itself? To provide an answer to that question was the stated purpose of the study.

The Report from Iron Mountain concludes that there can be no substitute for war unless it possesses three properties. It must (1) be economically wasteful, (2) represent a credible threat of great magnitude, and (3) provide a logical excuse for compulsory service to the government.

A SOPHISTICATED FORM OF SLAVERY … On the subject of compulsory service, the Report explains that one of the advantages of standing armies is that they provide a place for the government to put antisocial and dissident elements of society. In the absence of war, these forced-labor battalions would be told they are fighting poverty or cleaning up the planet or bolstering the economy or serving the common good in some other fashion.

Every teenager would be required to serve – especially during those years in which young people are most rebellious against authority. Older people, too, would be drafted as a means of working off tax payments and fines. Dissidents would face heavy fines for “hate crimes” and politically incorrect attitudes so, eventually, they would all be in the forced-labor battalions. The Report says:
We will examine … the time-honored use of military institutions to provide anti-social elements with an acceptable role in the social structure. … The current euphemistic clichés – “juvenile delinquency” and “alienation” – have had their counterparts in every age. In earlier days these conditions were dealt with directly by the military without the complications of due process, usually through press gangs or outright enslavement. …

Most proposals that address themselves, explicitly or otherwise, to the postwar problem of controlling the socially alienated turn to some variant of the Peace Corps or the so-called Job Corps for a solution. The socially disaffected, the economically unprepared, the psychologically uncomfortable, the hard-core “delinquents,” the incorrigible “subversives,” and the rest of the unemployable are seen as somehow transformed by the disciplines of a service modeled on military precedent into more or less dedicated social service workers. …

Another possible surrogate for the control of potential enemies of society is the reintroduction, in some form consistent with modern technology and political processes, of slavery. … It is entirely possible that the development of a sophisticated form of slavery may be an absolute prerequisite for social control in a world at peace. As a practical matter, conversion of the code of military discipline to a euphemized form of enslavement would entail surprisingly little revision; the logical first step would be the adoption of some form of “universal” military service.

(4)
BLOOD GAMES ..The Report considered ways in which the public could be preoccupied with non-important activities so that it would not have time to participate in political debate or resistance. Recreation, trivial game shows, pornography, and situation comedies could play an important role, but blood games were considered to be the most promising of all the options.

Blood games are competitive events between individuals or teams that are sufficiently violent in nature to enable the spectators to vicariously work off their frustrations. As a minimum, these events must evoke a passionate team loyalty on the part of the fans and must include the expectation of pain and injury on the part of the players. Even better for their purpose is the spilling of blood and the possibility of death. The common man has a morbid fascination for violence and blood. Crowds gather to chant “Jump! Jump!” at the suicidal figure on a hotel roof. Cars slow to a near stop on the highway to gawk at broken bodies next to a collision.

A schoolyard fight instantly draws a circle of spectators. Boxing matches and football games and hockey games and automobile races are telecast daily, attracting millions of cheering fans who give rapt attention to each moment of danger, each angry blow to the face, each broken bone, each knockout, each carrying away of the unconscious or possibly dying contestant. In this fashion, their anger at “society” is defused and focused, instead, on the opposing team.

The emperors of Rome devised the Circuses and gladiator contests and public executions by wild beasts for precisely that purpose.
Before jumping to the conclusion that such concepts are absurd in modern times, recall that during the 1985 European soccer championship in Belgium, the spectators became so emotionally involved in the contest that a bloody riot broke out in the bleachers leaving behind 38 dead and more that 400 injured. U.S. News & World Report gives this account:

The root of the trouble: A tribal loyalty to home teams that surpasses an obsession and, say some experts, has become a substitute religion for many. The worst offenders include members of gangs such as Chelsea’s Anti-Personnel Firm, made up of ill-educated young males who find in soccer rivalry an escape from boredom.

Still, the British do not have a patent on soccer violence. On May 26, eight people were killed and more than 50 injured in Mexico City,… a 1964 stadium riot in Lima, Peru, killed more than 300 – and a hotly disputed 1969 match between El Salvador and Honduras led to a week-long shooting war between the two countries, causing hundreds of casualties.

The U.S. is criticized for the gridiron violence of its favorite sport, football, but outbursts in the bleachers are rare because loyalties are spread among many sports and national pride is not at stake. Said Thomas Tutko, professor of psychology at California’s San Jose State University: “In these other countries, it used to be their armies. Now it’s their competitive teams that stir passions.”

(5)
Having considered all the ramifications of blood games, The Report from Iron Mountain concluded that they were not an adequate substitute for war. It is true that violent sports are useful distracters and do, in fact, allow an outlet for boredom and fierce group loyalty, but their effect on the nation’s psyche could not match the intensity of war hysteria. Until a better alternative could be found, world government would have to be postponed so that nations could continue to wage war.

FINDING A CREDIBLE GLOBAL THREAT …In time of war, most citizens uncomplainingly accept their low quality of life and remain fiercely loyal to their leaders. If a suitable substitute for war is to be found, then it must also elicit that same reaction. Therefore, a new enemy must be found that threatens the entire world, and the prospects of being overcome by that enemy must be just as terrifying as war itself. The Report is emphatic on that point:

Allegiance requires a cause; a cause requires an enemy. This much is obvious; the critical point is that the enemy that defines the cause must seem genuinely formidable. Roughly speaking, the presumed power of the “enemy” sufficient to warrant an individual sense of allegiance to a society must be proportionate to the size and complexity of the society.

Today, of course, that power must be one of unprecedented magnitude and frightfulness. (6)
The first consideration in finding a suitable threat to serve as a global enemy was that it did not have to be real. A real one would be better, of course, but an invented one would work just as well, provided the masses could be convinced it was real. The public will more readily believe some fictions than others. Credibility would be more important than truth.

Poverty was examined as a potential global enemy but rejected as not fearful enough. Most of the world was already in poverty. Only those who had never experienced poverty would see it as a global threat. For the rest, it was simply a fact of everyday life.

An invasion by aliens from outer space was given serious consideration. The report said that experiments along those lines already may have been tried. Public reaction, however, was not sufficiently predictable, because the threat was not “credible.” Here is what the report had to say:

Credibility, in fact, lies at the heart of the problem of developing a political substitute for war. This is where the space-race proposals, in many ways so well suited as economic substitutes for war, fall short. The most ambitious and unrealistic space project cannot of itself generate a believable external menace. It has been hotly argued that such a menace would offer the “last best hope of peace,” etc., by uniting mankind against the danger of destruction by “creatures” from other planets or from outer space.

Experiments have been proposed to test the credibility of an out-of-our-world invasion threat; it is possible that a few of the more difficult-to-explain “flying saucer” incidents of recent years were in fact early experiments of this kind. If so, they could hardly have been judged encouraging.

(7)
This report was released in 1966 when the idea of an alien presence seemed far fetched to the average person. In the ensuing years, however, that perception has changed. A growing segment of the population now believes that intelligent life forms may exist beyond our planet and could be monitoring our own civilization. Whether that belief is right or wrong is not the issue here. The point is that a dramatic encounter with aliens shown on network television – even if it were to be entirely fabricated by high-tech computer graphics or laser shows in the sky – could be used to stampede all nations into world government supposedly to defend the Earth from invasion.

On the other hand, if the aliens were perceived to have peaceful intent, an alternative scenario would be to form world government to represent a unified human species speaking with a single voice in some kind of galactic federation. Either scenario would be far more credible today than in 1966.

THE ENVIRONMENTAL-POLLUTION MODEL …The final candidate for a useful global threat was pollution of the environment. This was viewed as the most likely to succeed because it could be related to observable conditions such as smog and water pollution– in other words, it would be based partly on fact and, therefore, be credible. Predictions could be made showing end-of-earth scenarios just as horrible as atomic warfare. Accuracy in these predictions would not be important.

Their purpose would be to frighten, not to inform. It might even be necessary to deliberately poison the environment to make the predictions more convincing and to focus the public mind on fighting a new enemy, more fearful than any invader from another nation – or even from outer space. The masses would more willingly accept a falling standard of living, tax increases, and bureaucratic intervention in their lives as simply “the price we must pay to save Mother Earth.”

A massive battle against death and destruction from global pollution possibly could replace war as justification for social control.
Did The Report from Iron Mountain really say that? It certainly did – and much more. Here are just a few of the pertinent passages:
When it comes to postulating a credible substitute for war … the “alternate enemy” must imply a more immediate, tangible, and directly felt threat of destruction. It must justify the need for taking and paying a “blood price” in wide areas of human concern. In this respect, the possible substitute enemies noted earlier would be insufficient. One exception might be the environmental-pollution model, if the danger to society it posed was genuinely imminent. The fictive models would have to carry the weight of extraordinary conviction, underscored with a not inconsiderable actual sacrifice of life. … It may be, for instance, that gross pollution of the environment can eventually replace the possibility of mass destruction by nuclear weapons as the principal apparent threat to the survival of the species.

Poisoning of the air, and of the principal sources of food and water supply, is already well advanced, and at first glance would seem promising in this respect; it constitutes a threat that can be dealt with only through social organization and political power. …

It is true that the rate of pollution could be increased selectively for this purpose. … But the pollution problem has been so widely publicized in recent years that it seems highly improbable that a program of deliberate environmental poisoning could be implemented in a politically acceptable manner.

However unlikely some of the possible alternative enemies we have mentioned may seem, we must emphasize that one must be found of credible quality and magnitude, if a transition to peace is ever to come about without social disintegration. It is more probable, in our judgment, that such a threat will have to be invented.

(8)
AUTHENTICITY OF THE REPORT … The Report from Iron Mountain states that it was produced by a Special Study Group of fifteen men whose identities were to remain secret and that it was not intended to be made public. One member of the group, however, felt the Report was too important to be kept under wraps. He was not in disagreement with its conclusions. He merely believed that more people should read it. He delivered his personal copy to Leonard Lewin, a well-known author and columnist who, in turn, negotiated its publication by Dial Press. It was then reprinted by Dell Publishing.
This was during the Johnson Administration, and the President’s Special Assistant for National Security Affairs was CFR member Walt Rostow.

Rostow was quick to announce that the report was a spurious work. Herman Kahn, CFR director of the Hudson Institute, said it was not authentic. The Washington Post – which was owned and run by CFR member Katharine Graham – called it “a delightful satire.” Time magazine, founded by CFR-member Henry Luce, said it was a skillful hoax.

Then, on November 26, 1967, the Report was reviewed in the book section of the Washington Post by Herschel McLandress, which was the pen name for Harvard professor John Kenneth Galbraith. Galbraith, who also had been a member of the CFR, said that he knew firsthand of the Report’s authenticity because he had been invited to participate in it.

Although he was unable to be part of the official group, he was consulted from time to time and had been asked to keep the project a secret.

Furthermore, while he doubted the wisdom of letting the public know about the Report, he agreed totally with its conclusions. He wrote:
As I would put my personal repute behind the authenticity of this document, so would I testify to the validity of its conclusions. My reservations relate only to the wisdom of releasing it to an obviously unconditioned public.

(9)
Six weeks later, in an Associated Press dispatch from London, Galbraith went even further and jokingly admitted that he was “a member of the conspiracy.”

(10)
That, however, did not settle the issue. The following day, Galbraith backed off. When asked about his “conspiracy” statement, he replied: “For the first time since Charles II The Times has been guilty of a misquotation. … Nothing shakes my conviction that it was written by either Dean Rusk or Mrs. Clare Booth Luce.”

(11)
The reporter who conducted the original interview was embarrassed by the allegation and did further research. Six days later, this is what he reported: Misquoting seems to be a hazard to which Professor Galbraith is prone. The latest edition of the Cambridge newspaper Varsity quotes the following (tape recorded) interchange:
Interviewer: “Are you aware of the identity of the author of Report from Iron Mountain?”
Galbraith: “I was in general a member of the conspiracy but I was not the author. I have always assumed that it was the man who wrote the foreword – Mr. Lewin.”

(12)
So, on at least three occasions, Galbraith publicly endorsed the authenticity of the Report but denied that he wrote it. Then who did? Was it Leonard Lewin, after all? In 1967 he said he did not. In 1972 he said that he did. Writing in The New York Times Book Review Lewin explained: “I wrote the ‘Report,” all of it. … What I intended was simply to pose the issues of war and peace in a provocative way.”

(13)
But wait! A few years before that, columnist William F. Buckley told the New York Times that he was the author. That statement was undoubtedly made tongue-in-cheek, but who and what are we to believe? Was it written by Herman Kahn, John Kenneth Galbraith, Dean Rusk, Clare Booth Luce, Leonard Lewin, or William F. Buckley?

In the final analysis, it makes little difference. The important point is that The Report from Iron Mountain, whether written as a think-tank study or a political satire, explains the reality that surrounds us.

Regardless of its origin, the concepts presented in it are now being implemented in almost every detail. All one has to do is hold the Report in one hand and the daily newspaper in the other to realize that every major trend in American life is conforming to the blueprint.

So many things that otherwise are incomprehensible suddenly become clear: foreign aid, wasteful spending, the destruction of American industry, a job corps, gun control, a national police force, the apparent demise of Soviet power, a UN army, disarmament, a world bank, a world money, the surrender of national independence through treaties, and the ecology hysteria.

The Report from Iron Mountain is an accurate summary of the plan that has already created our present. It is now shaping our future.

ENVIRONMENTALISM A SUBSTITUTE FOR WAR … It is beyond the scope of this study to prove that currently accepted predictions of environmental doom are based on exaggerated and fraudulent “scientific studies.” But such proof is easily found if one is willing to look at the raw data and the assumptions upon which the projections are based.

More important, however, is the question of why end-of-world scenarios based on phony scientific studies – or no studies at all – are uncritically publicized by the CFR-controlled media; or why radical environmental groups advocating collectivist doctrine and anti-business programs are lavishly funded by CFR-dominated foundations, banks, and corporations, the very groups that would appear to have the most to lose.

The Report from Iron Mountain answers those questions.
As the Report pointed out, truth is not important in these matters. It’s what people can be made to believe that counts. “Credibility” is the key, not reality. There is just enough truth in the fact of environmental pollution to make predictions of planetary doom in the year two-thousand-something seem believable. All that is required is media cooperation and repetition. The plan has apparently worked. People of the industrialized nations have been subjected to a barrage of documentaries, dramas, feature films, ballads, poems, bumper stickers, posters, marches, speeches, seminars, conferences, and concerts. The result has been phenomenal. Politicians are now elected to office on platforms consisting of nothing more than an expressed concern for the environment and a promise to clamp down on those nasty industries.

No one questions the damage done to the economy or the nation. It makes no difference when the very planet on which we live is sick and dying. Not one in a thousand will question that underlying premise. How could it be false? Look at all the movie celebrities and rock stars who have joined the movement.
While the followers of the environmental movement are preoccupied with visions of planetary doom, let us see what the leaders are thinking.

The first Earth Day was proclaimed on April 22, 1970, at a “Summit” meeting in Rio de Janeiro, attended by environmentalists and politicians from all over the world. A publication widely circulated at that meeting was entitled the Environmental Handbook. The main theme of the book was summarized by a quotation from Princeton Professor Richard A. Falk, a member of the CFR. Falk wrote that there are four interconnected threats to the planet – wars of mass destruction, overpopulation, pollution, and the depletion of resources. Then he said: “The basis of all four problems is the inadequacy of the sovereign states to manage the affairs of mankind in the twentieth century.”

(14)
The Handbook continued the CFR line by asking these rhetorical questions: “Are nation-states actually feasible, now that they have power to destroy each other in a single afternoon?… What price would most people be willing to pay for a more durable kind of human organization – more taxes, giving up national flags, perhaps the sacrifice of some of our hard-won liberties?”

(15)
In 1989, the CFR-owned Washington Post published an article written by CFR member George Kennan in which he said: “We must prepare instead for … an age where the great enemy is not the Soviet Union, but the rapid deterioration of our planet as a supporting structure for civilized life.”

(16)
On March 27, 1990, in the CFR-controlled New York Times, CFR member Michael Oppenheimer wrote: “Global warming, ozone depletion, deforestation and overpopulation are the four horsemen of a looming 21st century apocalypse. … as the cold war recedes, the environment is becoming the No. 1 international security concern.”

(17)
CFR member, Lester Brown, heads up another think tank called the Worldwatch Institute. In the Institute’s annual report, entitled State of the World 1991, Brown said that “the battle to save the planet will replace the battle over ideology as the organizing theme of the new world order.”

(18)
In the official publication of the 1992 Earth Summit, we find this: “The world community now faces together greater risks to our common security through our impacts on the environment than from traditional military conflicts with one another.”
How many times does it have to be explained? The environmental movement was created by the CFR. It is a substitute for war that they hope will become the emotional and psychological foundation for world government.

HUMANITY ITSELF IS THE TARGET … The Club of Rome is a group of global planners who annually release end-of-world scenarios based on predictions of overpopulation and famine. Their membership is international, but the American roster includes such well-known CFR members as Jimmy Carter, Harlan Cleveland, Claiburne Pell, and Sol Linowitz. Their solution to overpopulation?

A world government to control birth rates and, if necessary, euthanasia. That is a gentle word for the deliberate killing of the old, the weak, and of course the uncooperative. Following the same reasoning advanced at Iron Mountain, the Club of Rome has concluded that fear of environmental disaster could be used as a substitute enemy for the purpose of unifying the masses behind its program.

In its 1991 book entitled The First Global Revolution, we find this:
In searching for a new enemy to unite us, we came up with the idea that pollution, the threat of global warming, water shortages, famine and the like would fit the bill. … All these dangers are caused by human intervention. … The real enemy, then, is humanity itself.

(19)
Collectivist theoreticians have always been fascinated by the possibility of controlling population growth. It excites their imaginations because it is the ultimate bureaucratic plan. If the real enemy is humanity itself, as the Club of Rome says, then humanity itself must become the target. Fabian Socialist Bertrand Russell expressed it thus:

I do not pretend that birth control is the only way in which population can be kept from increasing. … War, as I remarked a moment ago, has hitherto been disappointing in this respect, but perhaps bacteriological war may prove more effective. If a Black Death could be spread throughout the world once in every generation, survivors could procreate freely without making the world too full. …
A scientific world society cannot be stable unless there is world government. … It will be necessary to find ways of preventing an increase in world population. If this is to be done otherwise than by wars, pestilences and famines, it will demand a powerful international authority.

This authority should deal out the world’s food to the various nations in proportion to their population at the time of the establishments of the authority. If any nation subsequently increased its population, it should not on that account receive any more food. The motive for not increasing population would therefore be very compelling.

(21)
Very compelling, indeed. These quiet-spoken collectivists are not kidding around. For example, one of the most visible “environmentalists” and advocate of population control was Jacques Cousteau. Interviewed by the United Nations UNESCO Courier in November of 1991, Cousteau spelled it out. He said:
What should we do to eliminate suffering and disease? It is a wonderful idea but perhaps not altogether a beneficial one in the long run. If we try to implement it we may jeopardize the future of our species. It’s terrible to have to say this. World population must be stabilized, and to do that we must eliminate 350,000 people per day. This is so horrible to contemplate that we shouldn’t even say it, but it is just as bad not to say it.

(22)
GORBACHEV BECOMES AN ECOLOGY WARRIOR … We can now understand how Mikhail Gorbachev, formerly the leader of one of the most repressive governments the world has known, became head of a new organization called the International Green Cross, which supposedly is dedicated to environmental issues. Gorbachev has never denounced collectivism, only the label of a particular brand of collectivism called Communism. His real interest is not ecology but world government with himself assured a major position in the collectivist power structure.

In a public appearance in Fulton, Missouri, he praised the Club of Rome, of which he is a member, for its position on population control. Then he said:
One of the worst of the new dangers is ecological. … Today, global climatic shifts; the greenhouse effect; the “ozone hole”; acid rain; contamination of the atmosphere, soil and water by industrial and household waste; the destruction of the forests; etc. all threaten the stability of the planet.

(23)
Gorbachev proclaimed that global government was the answer to these threats and that the use of government force was essential. He said: “I believe that the new world order will not be fully realized unless the United Nations and its Security Council create structures … authorized to impose sanctions and make use of other measures of compulsion.”

(24)
Here is an arch criminal who fought his way up through the ranks of the Soviet Communist Party, became the protégé of Yuri Andropov, head of the dreaded KGB, was a member of the USSR’s ruling Politburo throughout the Soviet invasion of Afghanistan, and who was selected by the Politburo in 1985 as the supreme leader of world Communism. All of this was during one of the Soviet’s most dismal periods of human-rights violations and subversive activities against the free world. Furthermore, he ruled over a nation with one of the worst possible records of environmental destruction. At no time while he was in power did he ever say or do anything to show concern over planet Earth.

All that is now forgotten. Gorbachev has been transformed by the CFR-dominated media into an ecology warrior. He is calling for world government and telling us that such a government will use environmental issues as justification for sanctions and other “measures of compulsion.” We cannot say that we were not warned.

U.S. BRANDED AS ECOLOGICAL AGGRESSOR … The use of compulsion is an important point in these plans. People in the industrialized nations are not expected to cooperate in their own demise. They will have to be forced. They will not like it when their food is taken for global distribution. They will not approve when they are taxed by a world authority to finance foreign political projects. They will not voluntarily give up their cars or resettle into smaller houses or communal barracks to satisfy the resource-allocation quotas of a UN agency. Club-of-Rome member Maurice Strong states the problem:

In effect, the United States is committing environmental aggression against the rest of the world. … At the military level, the United States is the custodian. At the environmental level, the United States is clearly the greatest risk. … One of the worst problems in the United States is energy prices – they’re too low. …
It is clear that current lifestyles and consumption patterns of the affluent middle class … involving high meat intake, consumption of large amounts of frozen and `convenience’ foods, ownership of motor-vehicles, numerous electric household appliances, home and work-place air-conditioning … expansive suburban housing … are not sustainable.

(25)
Mr. Strong’s remarks were enthusiastically received by world environmental leaders, but they prompted this angry editorial response in the Arizona Republic:
Translated from eco-speak, this means two things:

(1) a reduction in the standard of living in Western nations through massive new taxes and regulations, and

(2) a wholesale transfer of wealth from industrialized to under-developed countries. The dubious premise here is that if the U.S. economy could be reduced to, say, the size of Malaysia’s, the world would be a better place. … Most Americans probably would balk at the idea of the U.N. banning automobiles in the U.S.

(26)
Who is this Maurice Strong who sees the United States as the environmental aggressor against the world? Does he live in poverty? Does he come from a backward country that is resentful of American prosperity? Does he himself live in modest circumstances, avoiding consumption in order to preserve our natural resources? None of the above. He is one of the wealthiest men in the world. He lives and travels in great comfort. He is a lavish entertainer. In addition to having great personal wealth derived from the oil industry in Canada – which he helped nationalize – Maurice Strong was the Secretary-General of the 1992 Earth Summit in Rio; head of the 1972 UN Conference on Human Environment in Stockholm; the first Secretary-General of the UN Environment Program; president of the World Federation of United Nations; co-chairman of the World Economic Forum; member of the Club of Rome; trustee of the Aspen Institute; and a director of the World Future Society. That is probably more than you wanted to know about this man, but it is necessary in order to appreciate the importance of what follows.

A PLOT FOR ECONOMIC CRISIS …Maurice Strong believes – or says that he believes – the world’s ecosystems can be preserved only if the affluent nations of the world can be disciplined into lowering their standard of living. Production and consumption must be curtailed.

To bring that about, those nations must submit to rationing, taxation, and political domination by world government. They will probably not do that voluntarily, he says, so they will have to be forced. To accomplish that, it will be necessary to engineer a global monetary crisis which will destroy their economic systems. Then they will have no choice but to accept assistance and control from the UN.

This strategy was revealed in the May, 1990, issue of West magazine, published in Canada. In an article entitled “The Wizard of Baca Grande,” journalist Daniel Wood described his week-long experience at Strong’s private ranch in southern Colorado. This ranch has been visited by such CFR notables as David Rockefeller, Secretary-of-State Henry Kissinger, founder of the World Bank Robert McNamara, and the presidents of such organizations as IBM, Pan Am, and Harvard.

During Wood’s stay at the ranch, the tycoon talked freely about environmentalism and politics. To express his own world view, he said he was planning to write a novel about a group of world leaders who decided to save the planet. As the plot unfolded, it became obvious that it was based on real people and real events. Wood continues the story:
Each year, he explains as background to the telling of the novel’s plot, the World Economic Forum convenes in Davos, Switzerland. Over a thousand CEOs, prime ministers, finance ministers, and leading academics gather in February to attend meetings and set economic agendas for the year ahead.

With this as a setting, he then says: “What if a small group of these world leaders were to conclude that the principal risk to the earth comes from the actions of the rich countries? And if the world is to survive, those rich countries would have to sign an agreement reducing their impact on the environment. Will they do it? …

The group’s conclusion is `no.’ the rich countries won’t do it. They won’t change. So, in order to save the planet, the group decides: Isn’t the only hope for the planet that the industrialized civilizations collapse?

Isn’t it our responsibility to bring that about? …
“This group of world leaders,” he continues, “form a secret society to bring about an economic collapse. It’s February. They’re all at Davos. These aren’t terrorists. They’re world leaders. They have positioned themselves in the world’s commodity and stock markets. They’ve engineered, using their access to stock exchanges and computers and gold supplies, a panic. Then, they prevent the world’s stock markets from closing. They jam the gears. They hire mercenaries who hold the rest of the world leaders at Davos as hostages. The markets can’t close. The rich countries…” And Strong makes a slight motion with his fingers as if he were flicking a cigarette butt out the window.

I sit there spellbound. This is not any storyteller talking, this is Maurice Strong. He knows these world leaders. He is, in fact, co-chairman of the Council of the World Economic Forum. He sits at the fulcrum of power. He is in a position to do it.“I probably shouldn’t be saying things like this,” he says.

(27)
Maurice Strong’s fanciful plot probably shouldn’t be taken too seriously, at least in terms of a literal reading of future events. It is unlikely they will unfold in exactly that manner – although it is not impossible. For one thing, it would not be necessary to hold the leaders of the industrialized nations at gun point. They would be the ones engineering this plot. Leaders from Third-World countries do not have the means to cause a global crisis. That would have to come from the money centers in New York,
London, or Tokyo. Furthermore, the masterminds behind this thrust for global government have always resided in the industrialized nations. They have come from the ranks of the CFR in America and from other branches of the International Roundtable in England, France, Belgium, Canada, Japan, and elsewhere.

They are the ideological descendants of Cecil Rhodes and they are fulfilling his dream.
It is not important whether or not Maurice Strong’s plot for global economic collapse is to be taken literally. What is important is that men like him are thinking along those lines. As Wood pointed out, they are in a position to do it. Or something like it. If it is not this scenario, they will consider another one with similar consequences. If history has proven anything, it is that men with financial and political power are quite capable of heinous plots against their fellow men. They have launched wars, caused depressions, and created famines to suit their personal agendas. We have little reason to believe that the world leaders of today are more saintly than their predecessors.

Furthermore, we must not be fooled by pretended concern for Mother Earth. The call-to-arms for saving the planet is a gigantic ruse. There is just enough truth to environmental pollution to make the show “credible,” as The Report from Iron Mountain phrased it, but the end-of-earth scenarios which drive the movement forward are bogus. The real objective in all of this is world government, the ultimate doomsday mechanism from which there can be no escape.

Destruction of the economic strength of the industrialized nations is merely a necessary prerequisite for ensnaring them into the global web. The thrust of the current ecology movement is directed totally to that end.

***********
by G. Edward Griffin. …It may be obtained at http://www.realityzone.com.
References:

1 Leonard Lewin, ed., Report from Iron Mountain on the possibility and the Desirability of Peace(New York: Dell Publishing, 1976), pp.13-14.
2 Ibid. pp. 39, 81.
3 Ibid. p. 9. 3
4 Ibid., pp. 41-42,68, 70.
5 “British Soccer’s Day of Shame,” U.S. News & World Report, June 10, 1985, p. 11.
6 Lewin, Report, p. 44. 6
7 Ibid., p. 66. 7
8 Ibid., pp. 66-67, 70-71. When the Report was written, terrorism had not yet been considered as a substitute for war. Since then, it has become the most useful of them all.
9 “News of War and Peace You’re Not Ready For,” by Herschel McLandress, Book World, in TheWashington Post, Nov. 26, 1967, p. 5.
10 “The Times Diary,” London Times, Feb. 5, 1968, p.8.
11 “Galbraith Says He Was Misquoted, “ London Times, Feb. 6, 1968, p. 3.
12 “Touche, Professor,” London Times, Feb. 12, 1968, p, 8. 9
13 “Report from Iron Mountain,” New Your Times, March 19, 1968, p. 8. 10
14 Garrett de Bell, ed., The Environmental Handbook (New York: Ballantine / Friends of the Earth,1970), p. 138.
15 Ibid., p. 145.
16 A Europe Now Free from A Confining Cold War Vision,” by George Kennan, (Washington Postsyndication, Sacramento Bee, Nov. 14, 1989, p. B7.
17 The New York Times has been one of the principal means by which CFR policies are inserted intothe mainstream of public opinion. The paper was purchased in 1896 by Alfred Ochs, with financialbacking from CFR pioneer J.P. Morgan, Rothchild agent August Belmont, and Jacob Schiff, a partner in Kuhn, Loeb & Co. It is now owned by CFR member Arthur Sulzberger, who is also thepublisher, and it is staffed by numerous CFR editors and columnists. See Shadows of Power byJames Perloff (Appleton, Wisconsin: Western Islands, 1988), p. 181.
18 Lester R. Brown, “The New World Order,” in Lester R. Brown et al., State of the World 1991; AWorldwatch Institute Report on Progress Toward A Sustainable Society (New York: W.W. Norton,1991), p. 3.
19 Alexander King and Bertrand Schneider, The First Global Revolution, A Report by the Council ofthe Club of Rome, (New York: Pantheon Books, 1991). P. 115.
20 See Martin, Rose, Fabian Freeway; High Road to Socialism in the U.S.A. (Boston: WesternIslands, 1966), pp. 171, 325, 463-69.
21 Bertrand Arthur William Russell, The Impact of Science on Society (New York: Simon and Schuster, 1953), pp. 103-104, 111.
22 Interviewed by Bahgat Eluadi and Adel Rifaat, Courrier de l’Unesco, Nov. 1991, p. 13.
23 Michail Gorbachev, “The River of Time and the Necessity of Action,” 46th John Findley GreedFoundation Lecture, Westminster College, Fulton, Missouri, May 6, 1992, transcript fromWestminster College Department of Press Relations, p. 6. Ibid., p. 9. 14
25 “Ecology Remedy Costly,” (AP), Sacramento Bee, March 12, 1992, p. A8. Also Maurice Strong,Introduction to Jim MacNeil, Pieter Winsemius, and Taizo Yakushiji, Beyond Interdependence,(New York: Oxford University Press, 1991), p. ix.
26 “Road to Ruin,” Arizona Republic, March 26, 1992.
27 “The Wizard of Baca Grande.” By Daniel Wood, West magazine, May 1990,

GEE … can you think of any reason why CORPORATIST would want to seek out and destroy Wikileak$ … ??

A Perspective … in the end it’s all about disclosure & transparency

    GEE … can you think of any reason why CORPORATIST would want to seek out and destroy Wikileak$ … ??

    HELLO … open your eyes … clean out your ears … look and listen …

Why Corporate Capital and Finance Are Waging an All-Out Cyberwar Against Wikileaks

By Mark Levine, Al Jazeera … Posted on December 29, 2010, Printed on December 30, 2010 .. READ COMPLETE ARTICLE HERE … http://www.alternet.org/story/149360/

When your Swiss banker throws you overboard, you know you’ve made some very powerful enemies.

Long famed for hiding money for everyone from Nazis and drug lords to spies and dictators, the Swiss government’s banking arm has decided that WikiLeaks and Julian Assange are just too hot even for it to handle.

And so the PostFinance, which runs the country’s banks, declared in early December that it had “ended its business relationship with WikiLeaks founder Julian Paul Assange” after accusing Mr. Assange of – gasp! – providing false information about his place of residence.

This move followed similar moves by credit card companies MasterCard and Visa, as well as PayPal and Amazon.com, to no longer process WikiLeaks payments and, in Amazon.com’s case, to cease hosting its data.

As I write this, Bank of America has joined the crescendo of corporations taking aim at WikiLeaks, refusing to process payments for it any longer because of “our reasonable belief that WikiLeaks may be engaged in activities that are, among other things, inconsistent with our internal policies for processing payments.”

And soon after, none other than Apple joined the chorus, pulling the plug on a WikiLeaks app only days after it went on sale on its iTunes website. Every sector of the corporate economy, it seems, is out to get WikiLeaks.

Zeroing in on “neocorporatism”

Should CIA agents, mafia bosses and other fellow Swiss banking customers who have likely been even less than forthright in their personal representations than Assange is alleged to have been also worry about the loyalty and discretion of their Swiss bankers?

Probably not. And that’s because the world’s criminals, autocrats and spooks are very much part of the global political economic system, even if sometimes on opposite sides.

But WikiLeaks both operates outside the system, seeking “Matrix”-style, to use technology – the internet – to “destroy” it by prying it open to public scrutiny, exposing the constant conspiracies of the powerful against the rest of society.

This task, Assange argues, is the most important way to help free the system’s millions of often complicit – if not quite willing – victims and in so doing, “change or remove… government and neocorporatist behaviour”.

As a political theorist, Assange leaves something to be desired. “Neocorporatism” describes a system in which capital and labour are enmeshed in an integrated but ultimately dependent relationship with a powerful and autonomous state apparatus – an update of the triangular relationship that enabled unprecedented economic growth and gains for the working class in the West in the decades after World War II.

Ideologically, this kind of close working relationship between government, big business and organised labour is the antithesis of the neoliberal system WikiLeaks seeks to combat.

But Assange is right that there is something “neo”, if not exactly new, in the way the corporate sector is behaving today and its relationship with government. It lies in the embrace – or better, re-embrace – of finance capitalism and militaristic empire and the military industrial complex that sustains it.

Whether preying on unwitting consumers in middle America or preying on suspected insurgents in the Middle East, these are two of the most secretive sectors of the American economy. They depend on the public knowing as little as possible about their inner workings to secure the greatest possible freedom of action, power and profits.

The power of secrecy … (hey … just ask the catholic church they’ve been doing it very successfully and powerfully for 2,000 years) … Assage’s abandonment by the Swiss banking system and its American corporate cousins is thus not surprising. Few industries have used secrecy and lack of disclosure more effectively than the banking, financial services and credit card industries.

Indeed, their secretive business practises are central to their constant ability to rake in enormous profits at the expense of working and middle class Americans through monopolising trading systems, charging morally usurious interest rates and fees, and engaging in other practises that would make even the most cold-hearted lone shark blush.

If the grand bargain between workers, capitalists and governments enabled the first two post-World War II generations to move from high school right into the middle class, this road was irreparably damaged by the 1980s, when the neoliberal Right first came to power.

As the United States entered its long and painful era of deindustrialization American foreign policy became more aggressively militaristic; and so joining the military as opposed to GM or Ford became one of the few routes to secure any kind of stable economic future (as long as you stayed in the military).

Not surprisingly, profits from the financial sector surpassed that of manufacturing in the early 1990s and haven’t dropped since. But these profits and the economic growth they generated have relied disproportionately on government and consumer debt and a hollowing out of the manufacturing sector, which together helped make the US the “sick man of the globe”, as one senior corporate economist.

For their part, GM, Ford and Chrysler simultaneously focused most of their energies on producing comparatively profitable gas-guzzlers like SUVs while establishing financial services arms that quickly became responsible for a substantial share of their profits (in some years upwards of 90 percent of profits are so derived).

Their lending practises, it’s worth noting, included the kinds of “liar” home loans, given out with little concern over the ability of borrowers to pay them, that precipitated the global economic crisis of 2007 till today.

Financialisation and history

None of these practises would have withstood the light of public scrutiny, and it was only the corporatisation – in good measure, financialization – of American politics that allowed them to flourish in the last thirty years. Few enterprises threaten that secrecy as much as WikiLeaks and its laser-like focus on openness, which is why its actions are viewed in Washington as “striking at the very heart of the global economy”.

The “financialisation” of the economy represents the increasing dominance of the financial industries in the overall economy, taking over “the dominant economic, cultural, and political role in a national economy”.

Crucially, this process isn’t unique to the United States; it also happened to previous empires, like the Hapsburg’s, Dutch and British empires, at precisely the eras they lost their dominant global position. In all cases, financialism and militarism went hand in hand, as first pointed out by the British historian John Hobson’s famous 1902 book Imperialism: A Study.

In it, Hobson argued that the monopolisation of the financial sector created a new oligarchy that linked together the large banks and industrial firms together with “war mongers and speculators” which encouraged imperialism to secure markets for the surplus products produced by corporations.

America’s rise to global dominance came after the end of the imperial era and so it couldn’t blatantly conquer territory to create new markets. But at the moment of its rise policy makers called on the government to use high military spending to ensure overall robust economic growth.

This coincided with rapid expansion of easily obtainable credit, creating two “giant black holes” (in the words of Israeli economists Shimshon Bichler and Jonathan Nitzan) whose potential for expansion was limited only by the willingness of citizens to support the policies that enabled them, despite the long term harm to the economic and political well-being of their societies.

During the first thirty years of the Cold War era, the propensity towards militarism was balanced by the robust manufacturing economy and the tripartite business-labour-government relationship that secured it.

This began to change in the 1970s, when the hugely expensive, and profitable, Vietnam War began to wind own.

At this moment, as Nitzan and Bichler describe in their hugely important book, The Global Political Economy of Israel, beginning in this period “there was a growing convergence of interests between the world’s leading petroleum and armament corporations. The politicisation of oil, together with the parallel commercialisation of arms exports, helped shape an uneasy weapondollar-petrodollar coalition between these companies.”

What is most crucial about Nitzan and Bichler’s analysis is that one of the most important ways that the arms and oil industries were able to earn a disproportionate (as they describe it, “differential”) level of profits was through the regular eruption of Middle Eastern energy conflicts, which ensured both relative high oil prices and arms purchases.

McDonald’s and McDonnell Douglas

As this process developed, the authors explain that “the lines separating state from capital, foreign policy from corporate strategy, and territorial conquest from differential profit, no longer seem very solid.”

New York Times columnist Thomas Friedman puts it more colourfully: “The hidden hand of the market will never work without the hidden fist. McDonald’s cannot flourish without McDonnell Douglas – and the hidden fist that keeps the world safe for Silicon Valley’s technologies to flourish is called the US Army, Air Force, Navy, and Marine Corps.”

This is the “neocorporatism” that Assange and his WikiLeaks comrades have zeroed in on, although today, more than a decade after Friedman wrote the above words, Master Card is more relevant than McDonald’s.

The problem is that WikiLeaks alone cannot turn the tide in this conflict.

Assange might well be a “high tech terrorist,” as US Vice President Joseph Biden recently called him, given how much terror his actions have struck in the heart of the American political system.

But the US is ultimately only one of a group of powerful countries and corporations whose leaders all share a fundamental commitment to securing as much profit and power as possible for themselves, however much their methods and politics differ.

Indeed, a sober look at the relevant data reveals that the profit share of the financial sectors outside the US has almost always been significantly higher than in the US, meaning that the rest of the world has long been more “financialised” than has the US economy.

As always, capitalism and power have never been as conveniently centred in one country or region as people imagine.

To really have an impact, WikiLeaks needs to inspire a whole generation of leakers in other countries and cultures, who are as willing to risk their freedom as Assange and the other people behind WikiLeaks. The leak culture has started to take root, however only time will tell is it resists the forces working against it’s development.

If this doesn’t happen – if Assange and his comrades are successfully made into examples by their corporate and political enemies that scare off those who might be inspired by their example – Capital will likely win the world’s first “cyber-war”, much as it’s won most every war before it during modernity’s long, bloody and unimaginably profitable history.
Mark Levine is a professional musician and professor of Middle Eastern history at the University of California, Irvine. He is author of half a dozen books, including Heavy Metal Islam: Rock, Religion and the Struggle for the Soul of Islam (forthcoming, Random House/Verso, companion CD to be released by EMI Records)

A pontification transparently disingenuous… ! !

A Perspective … in the end it’s all about disclosure & transparency

    A pontification transparently disingenuous… ! !

The Pope’s Bizarre Justification for Catholic Sex Abuse

The Vatican has come up with some thin explanations for their molestation scandal, but this one by the pope himself last week is a real doozy:

Victims of clerical sex abuse have reacted furiously to Pope Benedict’s claim yesterday that paedophilia wasn’t considered an “absolute evil” as recently as the 1970s.

In his traditional Christmas address yesterday to cardinals and officials working in Rome, Pope Benedict XVI also claimed that child pornography was increasingly considered “normal” by society.

“In the 1970s, paedophilia was theorised as something fully in conformity with man and even with children,” the Pope said.
“It was maintained — even within the realm of Catholic theology — that there is no such thing as evil in itself or good in itself. There is only a ‘better than’ and a ‘worse than’. Nothing is good or bad in itself.”

The Pope said abuse revelations in 2010 reached “an unimaginable dimension” which brought “humiliation” on the Church.

Asking how abuse exploded within the Church, the Pontiff called on senior clerics “to repair as much as possible the injustices that occurred” and to help victims heal through a better presentation of the Christian message.
“We cannot remain silent about the context of these times in which these events have come to light,” he said, citing the growth of child pornography “that seems in some way to be considered more and more normal by society” he said.

Huh? … I’m fairly sure that pedophilia was considered an absolute evil in the 1970s. It was just covered up — mostly because of institutions like the Church which made even the thought of sex so shameful that even innocent victims of abuse were afraid to admit it.

But whatever “context” he’s thinking of, in normal society sexual exploitation of children wasn’t part of it except on society’s fringe(just as it is today among certain fundamentalist sects

I know the Pope is infallible and all, but you can only conclude from these comments that he still has not come to grips with what happened in his Church and neither has the institution. There are many examples of our leadership and elite institutions and leadership failing, but I think this one is the best example. When even the Church that has made human sexuality a purely procreative necessity within sanctioned marriage is making excuses for pedophilia among its priests because of “the times” then it’s fairly clear that any institution can be thoroughly corrupted to its very core. It tends to create just a little mistrust among the people.

By Digby | Sourced from Hullabaloo …Posted at December 29, 2010, 12:46 pm

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