imageReality is “big-brother” will be looking into our lives and dissecting what we do and point or wag your finger if you choose … but we allowed it to happen


Senate approves measure to renew controversial surveillance authority

By Ellen Nakashima, Updated: Friday, December 28, 9:56 AM …

Congress approved a measure Friday that would renew expansive U.S. surveillance authority for five more years, rejecting objections from senators who are concerned the legislation does not adequately protect Americans’ privacy.

The bill passed the Senate 73 to 23. The House approved it in September and President Obama is expected to sign it before the current authority expires on Monday

The lopsided Senate vote authorized a continuation of the government’s ability to eavesdrop on communications inside the United States involving foreign citizens without obtaining a specific warrant for each case. The surveillance has been credited with exposing several plots against U.S. targets, but also drawn fire from civil liberties advocates.

“It produced and continues to produce significant information that is vital to defend the nation against international terrorism and other threats,” said Sen. Dianne Feinstein (D-Calif.), the chairman of the Senate Intelligence Committee, who urged her colleagues to approve the extension without amendment so it would not need to be sent back to the House for a vote.

Feinstein said there have been about 100 arrests in terrorism-related plots over the past four years — 16 in the last year — and that electronic surveillance played a role in some of them.

Members of the Senate devoted much of Thursday to debating proposed privacy amendments to the bill, which renews a key provision of the FISA Amendments Act of 2008.

The Bush-era provision expanded the government’s surveillance authority to intercept electronic communications in the United States without a warrant if the targets are foreigners overseas. The surveillance is conducted under a blanket approval issued once a year by a special court, if the court is satisfied that the government’s targeting procedures will work and privacy protections are adequate.

But the e-mails and phone calls of Americans who communicate with the foreigners are also being swept up. A number of senators voiced concerns that intelligence agencies could search through the data for particular communications of U.S. citizens without a warrant — what they called a “backdoor search loophole.”

The Senate’s leading critic of the measure, Sen. Ron Wyden (D-Ore.), agreed to drop his insistence that the government obtain a warrant for such searches in exchange for Senate leadership’s assurance that it would hold a vote on a Wyden amendment aimed at assessing the law’s privacy impact on Americans.

“What we want to know . . . [is] whether the government has ever taken advantage of this backdoor search loophole and conducted a warrantless search for the phone calls or e-mails of specific Americans,” Wyden said in floor debate Thursday.

His amendment would have required the director of national intelligence to report whether the government has conducted any warrantless searches and to provide information about the number and types of intercepted communications that involved U.S. citizens.

Wyden’s amendment got 43 votes Friday. Three other attempts to add safeguards and make other changes were defeated on Thursday.

Sen. Jeff Merkley (D-Ore.) sought the declassification of significant legal opinions by the secret Foreign Intelligence Surveillance Court, which issues the yearly certifications. The court interprets the FISA law, and its definitions of key terms shape the scope and nature of surveillance, he said.

The court has issued opinions that raise the question of whether the surveillance authority “is a gateway that is thrown wide open to any level of spying on Americans,” he said.

“An open and democratic society like ours should not be governed by secret laws,” he said. “And judicial interpretations are as much a part of the law as the words that make up our statutes.”

Though she opposed the amendment for expediency’s sake, Feinstein said she supported Merkley’s goal and would seek declaimagessification of significant court opinions, where doing so would not jeopardize national security.

A third amendment would have reauthorized the bill for only three years. A fourth would have required the government to get a warrant when seeking information held by third parties.


think COLOR does not matter

HURRICANE SANDY hits northeast – – “WHITE ” – –  HURRICANE KATRINA his south – – “non-white” – – how fast and with how much $$$ … think COLOR does not matter …


imageSenate Votes in Favor of $60 Billion Hurricane Sandy Emergency-Spending Bill


Read the Article at The Hill…




… After we have allowed Mon$anto to KILL all the bees will we be satisfied … and what … hope there is new technology to perform the herculean task of the bees …

imageBee Tales


This is one more kick at this cat. The attempt to avoid the reality continues and will not end until the beekeeping industry launches a class action suit against Bayer in particular and all other found ins. They do not even try to create compelling controversy anymore. Ignoring it seems good enough.


I am sure that bee keepers are now doing their own checking before they set out hives in order to minimize the risk of exposure. That may be good enough in most cases and the farmers will be working around it all also. That could also be the reason things have quieted down.


It is hard to understand how anyone thought that a persistent pesticide background would fail to be concentrated by foraging bees except as wishful thinking.


Study Links Pesticides to Bumblebee Destruction…Again



by Elizabeth RenterDecember 13th, 2012


In today’s news from the desk of Captain Obvious—scientists have found that pesticides may be contributing to the decline in bumblebees. Yes, apparently we needed another study for this. That study, led by biologists with the University of London, looked at what happened to bees in areas where different crops are sprayed with pesticides. What they found could explain why bumblebee colonies are failing.


According to Raw Story, the study was particularly important because it looked at what happened to bees following pesticide exposure for four weeks. Current industry guidelines in the testing of pesticides for safety, only require 96 hours.


The bees were divided into four groups. Three had access to feeder boxes with a sugary syrup spiked with either imidacloprid insecticide or a filter paper with gamma-cyhalothrin on it. The bees were not forced into these boxes, but the boxes were left in the path of the bees, around landscaping for pollen-foraging. The fourth group of bees was a control group, having no access to the chemicals.


All of the bees who were allowed access to the pesticides showed negative results. Those colonies who had contact with imidacloprid were less likely to return to the nest after foraging. Also, the larvae in that colony was less likely to mature to adult bumblebees, suggesting the adult bees brought home the chemicals to the immature insects.


The other group exposed to chemicals, in this case gamma-cyhalothrin, experienced a higher death rate. In both colonies exposed to pesticides, the colonies were more likely to fail.


While this study, published in Nature, was only conducted on bumblebees (the big fuzzy ones), the same results would be likely in other bee varieties—specifically honey bees, whose colonies are much larger.

Our findings have clear implications for the conservation of insect pollinators in areas of agricultural intensification, particularly social bees, with their complex social organisation and dependence on a critical threshold of workers,” said researchers.


And of course this isn’t the only evidence linking pesticides with bee collapse. Another study confirms that the bee population decline is also linked to corn insecticides that are among the most widely used in the world. The study sheds more light on the rampant downfall of the bee population through mass die-offs, also known as colony collapse disorder, with the researchers noting that an increase in bee deaths began to be observed as soon as the insecticide was put into use.


Bees are the pollinators of the vast majority of plant life. They are said to account for 80% of pollination by insects. And with populations dropping, it’s crucial that people in power take note of studies like this and take steps to remedy the declining numbers.


But, as we reported in April, Monsanto, the company responsible for keeping GMO crops front and center, will be doing their best to bury any links between bee populations and pesticides. Last year they actually bought out a bee research company, Beeologics, to ensure they had input into any potentially damaging information that would come out of the bee world.  This company was recognized as one of the leaders in the world on bee research. Now, however, they have fallen under Monsanto’s spell and their objectivity has been lost.



… YES… the game of politics is rigged because we allow it to be … and only we can change that reality …

imageMatt Damon gives up on politics…‘Game is rigged’



Matt Damon rather infamously said in 2011 that he wouldn’t mind if President Barack Obama — whom the actor had supported in 2008 — was a one-term president because he’d rather have a “one-term president with some balls who actually got stuff done.” (The comment even earned Damon some flak from the president himself.)

But, he still did his part to give Obama a second term, admitting that he still voted for him in November.

“I assume there will be some Supreme Court appointments in this next term; that alone was reason to vote for him,” Damon told Playboy magazine in its January 2013 issue. “I don’t think I said anything a lot of people weren’t thinking. It’s easier now more than ever in my life to feel the fix is in, the game is rigged and no matter how hard you work to change things, it just doesn’t matter.”

Damon also was asked for his thoughts on Clint Eastwood’s performance at the Republican National Convention (the two worked together on 2010’s “Hereafter”).


… Our one shared biosphere is a LOW priority because that’s the way “we” want it … but we have been educated to point and wag our finger and blame others … want answers … look in any mirror …

imageEPA Chief to Step Down, With Climate Still Low Priority


John M. Broder, The New York Times News Service: Read the Article


Lisa P. Jackson’s departure from her four-year post as administrator of the EPA comes as many environmentalists are questioning President Obama’s commitment to dealing with climate change.


American hubris knows no equal what is Japan guilty of … purchasing American/GE mfr nuclear reactors … what Japan caused the tsunami which devastated their country … what Japan was unprepared for the force of this tsunami … Hey, just how prepared was the USA under “W” Bush when Hurricane Katrina devastated New Orleans and our response was to allow the least among us to die


imageUS Sailors Sue Japan’s TEPCO for Post-Quake Radiation Exposure


By Kari Huus, NBC News…

       Sailors aboard the aircraft carrier USS Ronald Reagan wash down the flight deck to remove potential radiation contamination while operating off the coast of Japan providing humanitarian assistance in support of Operation Tomodachi on March 22, 2011.

imageA group of U.S. Navy personnel involved in the humanitarian effort after Japan’s March 2011 earthquake and tsunami have filed a lawsuit against the Tokyo Electric Power Co. for more than $200 million in compensation, punitive damages and future medical costs for exposure to radiation that leaked from the damaged Fukushima Nuclear Power Plant at the time.

The plaintiffs include eight troops serving on the USS Ronald Reagan aircraft carrier — one of whom was pregnant at the time of the alleged exposure — and her daughter.

They charge that the utility, known as TEPCO, "knowingly and negligently caused, permitted and allowed misleading information concerning the true condition of the (plant) to be disseminated to the public, including the U.S. Navy Department," according to the complaint filed on Dec. 21 in a U.S. federal court in San Diego.


The plaintiffs are suffering a variety of symptoms that attorney Paul Garner says were caused by the exposure, including rectal bleeding, thyroid problems and persistent migraine headaches, and all face an increased chance of developing cancer and requiring expensive medical procedures.

The U.S. carrier was positioned just offshore from the damaged Fukushima Nuclear Power Plant, which and suffered a meltdown which triggered the release of high levels of radiation into the air and water.


… Actually there is NO  limit as $$$ is an illusion …


imageU.S. will hit debt limit on Dec. 31, Treasury Department says

12-26-2012  •  Washington Post

The U.S. government will hit the $16.4 trillion federal debt limit on Monday and turn to “extraordinary measures” to continue borrowing, the Treasury Department said, beginning a countdown until Congress either passes legislation to allow for more bo