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Fire Walk With Me

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Gender: Male
Current location: Los Angeles
Member since: Sat Apr 9, 2005, 09:20 PM
Number of posts: 38,893

About Me

"There is something terribly wrong with this country." -V So, OCCUPY.

Journal Archives

Wisconsin: We'll All Fight for Freedom 'Till We're Free



Posted by Fire Walk With Me | Wed Aug 14, 2013, 10:37 AM (0 replies)

Meet the upcoming "Conflict Records Research Center" dedicated to data and metadata analysis.

Indefinite Surveillance: Say Hello to the National Defense Authorization Act of 2014 http://truth-out.org/news/item/17070-indefinite-surveillance-say-hello-to-the-national-defense-authorization-act-of-2014

NDAA 2014 builds on the powers granted by both the Patriot Act and FISA by allowing unrestricted analysis and research of captured records pertaining to any organization or individual “now or once hostile to the United States”. Under the Patriot Act, the ability to obtain “any tangible thing” eliminated any expectation of privacy. Under NDAA 2014 Sec. 1061(g)(1), an overly vague definition of captured records enhances government power and guarantees indefinite surveillance.

On May 22, 2013 the Subcommittee on Intelligence, Emerging Threats and Capabilities, one of several Armed Services Committees, met to discuss the National Defense Authorization Act (NDAA) for Fiscal Year 2014. The main subject of the hearing was Sec. 1061, otherwise known as Enhancement of Capacity of the United States Government to Analyze Captured Records. This enhancement provision of NDAA 2014 would effectively create a new intelligence agency, one with the authority to analyze information gained under the Patriot Act, FISA, and known spying programs such as PRISM.

Sec. 1061(a) authorizes the Secretary of Defense to "establish a center to be known as the 'Conflict Records Research Center'" (Center). The main purpose of the center, according to the bill text, is to create a "digital research database," one with the capability to "translate" and facilitate research on "records captured from countries, organizations and individuals, now or once hostile to the United States." The authorization also says the Center will conduct research and analysis to "increase the understanding of factors related to international relations, counterterrorism and conventional and unconventional warfare, and ultimately, enhance national security."

In order to make the Center run, and to accomplish such an incredibly broad scope of "research," the Secretary of Defense needs the Director of National Intelligence (DNI) to cooperate in coordinating "information exchanges important to the leadership of the United States Government." That coordination would require participation of all 16 member agencies and departments of the U.S. Intelligence Community. This would leave James Clapper, the man accused of lying to Congress about the National Security Agency's (NSA) domestic spying program known as PRISM, in de facto direction of another federal surveillance and data analysis agency. And while the Center would be officially directed and overseen by the Secretary of Defense, without unfettered access to secret and top secret information, the Center would become completely ineffective. These information exchanges would most likely include data and records generated by the mass surveillance of everyday people under PRISM, as well as surveillance of those identified as "potential terrorists" or " high value targets" by any one of those 16 intelligence agencies now in operation.

(More at the link.)
Posted by Fire Walk With Me | Mon Aug 12, 2013, 08:20 AM (4 replies)

It is legal for the government to lie to your face.

Michael Hastings BuzzFeed Staff posted May 18, 2012 4:27pm EDT

http://www.buzzfeed.com/mhastings/congressmen-seek-to-lift-propaganda-ban

The amendment would “strike the current ban on domestic dissemination” of propaganda material produced by the State Department and the independent Broadcasting Board of Governors, according to the summary of the law at the House Rules Committee’s official website.

The tweak to the bill would essentially neutralize two previous acts—the Smith-Mundt Act of 1948 and Foreign Relations Authorization Act in 1987—that had been passed to protect U.S. audiences from our own government’s misinformation campaigns.

snip

“I just don’t want to see something this significant – whatever the pros and cons – go through without anyone noticing,”
“ says one source on the Hill, who is disturbed by the law. According to this source, the law would allow “U.S. propaganda intended to influence foreign audiences to be used on the domestic population.”

The new law would give sweeping powers to the government to push television, radio, newspaper, and social media onto the U.S. public. “It removes the protection for Americans,” says a Pentagon official who is concerned about the law. “It removes oversight from the people who want to put out this information. There are no checks and balances. No one knows if the information is accurate, partially accurate, or entirely false.”

(More at the link. Note the sentence which begins "In an apparent retaliation..." as reporters were directly targeted; Mr. Hastings himself is dead under mysterious circumstances after saying he had to go under the radar because he was going to break something big and was under surveillance.)

I'm sure there are those here who would not imagine the government would mis-use such a fuzzy piece of legislation to push upon US citizens their version of...well, whatever they want to push at any time in any amount. Obama cites the rule of law as being one of the touchstones of this administration...and of course, all you have to do is make legal anything you wish to do and bingo, anything you wish to do is then legal. Big Brother is talking.

Posted by Fire Walk With Me | Sat Aug 10, 2013, 06:15 AM (30 replies)

Obama: Snowden has been charged with three felonies and should come to US to face charges

RT ‏@RT_com

Obama: #Snowden has been charged with three felonies and should come to US to face charges http://on.rt.com/l2av3v

“So the fact is that Mr. Snowden has been charged with three felonies,” added Obama. “If in fact he believes that what he did was right, then like every American citizen he can come here, appear before a court with a lawyer and make his case. If the concern was that somehow this was the only way to get this information out to the public, I signed an executive order well before Mr. Snowden leaked this information that provided whistleblower protection to the intelligence community for the first time. So there were other avenues available for someone whose conscious was stirred.”

Obama also said "Transparency and the rule of law will be the touchstones of this administration"



but it has taken Snowden to actually FORCE any tiny amount of this out of Obama, along with felony charges. It's illegal to reveal illegal spying upon US citizens? Fuck the surveillance state and all who defend it. The US doesn't consider waterboarding, rendition, and solitary confinement to be torture. Neither does it regard indefinite detention with neither trial nor representation to be so (UNCONSTITUTIONAL but there it is: section 1021 of the NDAA, twice signed by Obama and defended in court by his lawyers).

So they can stuff Snowden in a box in some foreign country and waterboard him for the rest of his life and call it perfectly legal.

Seriously, FUCK the surveillance state. It must be annihilated utterly. WHERE'S MY CONSTITUTION!?

PS: Want to prosecute some people who are really, actually guilty? Bush, Cheney, Rumsfeld, Rove, Rice, Wolfowitz...No, THEY get to walk.


Infinite

Also, they can lie about it to us at will:

It is legal for the government to lie to your face.

http://www.democraticunderground.com/10023438872
Posted by Fire Walk With Me | Sat Aug 10, 2013, 04:24 AM (39 replies)

"OWS - Where have they gone?"

Cross-posting from a GD thread. This is only skimming the surface but I wanted to share it here...
http://www.democraticunderground.com/10023427954

The US government engaged in prolonged domestic terrorism against us.

The use and threat of force (which includes arrests into the prison-industrial complex and courts system) to intimidate or coerce a civilian population for political or social purposes.

Domestic terrorism is the unlawful use, or threatened use, of force or violence by a group or individual based and operating entirely within the United States or Puerto Rico without foreign direction committed against persons or property to intimidate or coerce a government, the civilian population, or any segment thereof in furtherance of political or social objectives.

http://www.fbi.gov/stats-services/publications/terrorism-2002-2005

Section 802 of the USA PATRIOT Act (Pub. L. No. 107-52) expanded the definition of terrorism to cover ""domestic,"" as opposed to international, terrorism. A person engages in domestic terrorism if they do an act ""dangerous to human life"" that is a violation of the criminal laws of a state or the United States, if the act appears to be intended to: (i) intimidate or coerce a civilian population; (ii) influence the policy of a government by intimidation or coercion; or (iii) to affect the conduct of a government by mass destruction, assassination or kidnapping. Additionally, the acts have to occur primarily within the territorial jurisdiction of the United States and if they do not, may be regarded as international terrorism.

http://www.aclu.org/national-security/how-usa-patriot-act-redefines-domestic-terrorism

We revealed the true power in the country which is the Plutonomy/Plutocracy/Corporatocracy. And that the government is devoted to protecting it at the expense of US citizens. That the US government does not represent the citizens of this country.

Some 7700 of us were arrested. The DHS and FBI spied upon us from day one and shared the information across agencies (such sharing is specifically redacted in FOIA documents) =as well as with the very corporations and institutions we protested=.

We revealed the death of "the commons" in major cities, of "privately-owned public space". We revealed that "democratic" mayors across the nation were even more aggressive and bloodthirsty in their response to the marches and encampments as republican (Quan, Villariagosa, etc.) We revealed that the media outright lied about us to preserve the agenda of the five or six corporations who own the mainstream media (including Mitt Romney's Bain Capital).

We revealed that debt is their business model.

We helped reveal the revolving door in the White House providing for corporate bailouts and interests.

We revealed the massive, long-term and blatantly illegal foreclosure engine being applied against the people of this country. Google "double-tracking". And that Wall Street (Blackstone Group) are behind buying up the foreclosures banks then put up for auction every quarter or so. It's a land grab to turn us into a nation of renters. Michael Moore leaked the Citigroup "Plutonomy" memos which revealed among other things that the main asset of the bottom 80% of US income earners is their home. Note the attacks upon our homes and the transfer to Wall Street.

We revealed that civil disobedience is now very dangerous to say the least, and that the 1st Amendment is basically gone. Even the Supreme Court legislated that protest is illegal on their grounds, using terms directly from the 1st Amendment. It's not democracy if they don't listen.

We revealed that when the people get together from all walks of life, across all financial and social boundaries, the results are unstable but are synergistic. That we have a common love for each other and a common cause of fairness and basic rights. We brought together Main Street and Skid Row (and revealed the forces acting against both for personal profit). We revealed that the people can sometimes respond more quickly than government systems to begin providing relief to disaster-struck areas. Not gloating, merely doing what must be done.

We revealed that together, we are a true power with positive goals and great hope and positivity. That in gathering together, we CAN change the world for the better. We revealed that we must create new systems obsoleting the old.

We revealed that the powers that be must end any gathering of the people into their own power so that we remain dependent upon THEM. To show us WHY WE NEED THEM, to paraphrase "V for Vendetta".

We thank Anonymous and others who fight the good fight and who provided massive assistance and support. We thank Michael Moore who in "Capitalism: A Love Story" asked the people to DO SOMETHING, who is an endless truth-teller and patriot.

We are still here. We are in the new wave of worker's rights and wage rights strikes in warehouses, anti-union companies such as Walmart, in strikes for a living wage in fast food and any other area. We are still here when you remember the vast, unchanged income inequality present in this country. We are here when you hear about corporate legislation (ALEC, such as "stand your ground"). We are here when you learn of appointments of billionaires and corporate executives to government positions, of representatives' investments in such things as the tar sands and KeystoneXL pipeline. We are here when you note the militarization of police departments under the lie of the surveillance state. We are here when you note that representatives who voted to continue the NSA as-is were granted lots of donations and rewards by lobbyists. We are there as you note the Halliburton-like, Iraq pig's trough of start-up companies sucking up both our data and tax dollars under the lie of the surveillance state.

We are there as you realize the government's message to protesters, whistle-blowers, journalists, and more, is "Do what we say or else."

We are there as you rise against this to fight for our Constitutional values.

We are you. You are the 99%. You are the true power and hope in this country. Together, we CAN build a better world.


I am with Occupy but no single member represents the movement.
Posted by Fire Walk With Me | Fri Aug 9, 2013, 09:49 AM (59 replies)

Secret Use of Spy Surveillance (GCSB/NSA) in Ordinary Investigations

Hamish Hill ‏@HamishHill

It just keeps getting better. Secret Use of Spy Surveillance (GCSB/NSA) in Ordinary Investigations
https://www.eff.org/deeplinks/2013/08/dea-and-nsa-team-intelligence-laundering



DEA and NSA Team Up to Share Intelligence, Leading to Secret Use of Surveillance in Ordinary Investigations

UPDATE: Add the IRS to the list of federal agencies obtaining information from NSA surveillance. Reuters reports that the IRS got intelligence tips from DEA's secret unit (SOD) and were also told to cover up the source of that information by coming up with their own independent leads to recreate the information obtained from SOD. So that makes two levels of deception: SOD hiding the fact it got intelligence from the NSA and the IRS hiding the fact it got information from SOD. Even worse, there's a suggestion that the Justice Department (DOJ) "closely guards the information provided by SOD with strict oversight," shedding doubt into the effectiveness of DOJ earlier announced efforts to investigate the program.

A startling new Reuters story shows one of the biggest dangers of the surveillance state: the unquenchable thirst for access to the NSA's trove of information by other law enforcement agencies.

As the NSA scoops up phone records and other forms of electronic evidence while investigating national security and terrorism leads, they turn over "tips" to a division of the Drug Enforcement Agency ("DEA") known as the Special Operations Division ("SOD"). FISA surveillance was originally supposed to be used only in certain specific, authorized national security investigations, but information sharing rules implemented after 9/11 allows the NSA to hand over information to traditional domestic law-enforcement agencies, without any connection to terrorism or national security investigations.

(More at the link.)
Posted by Fire Walk With Me | Thu Aug 8, 2013, 02:47 AM (1 replies)

U.S. accuses Bank of America of mortgage-backed securities fraud

http://www.reuters.com/article/2013/08/06/us-bofa-justice-idUSBRE9750ZU20130806

According to the lawsuits, Bank of America made misleading statements and failed to disclose important facts about the mortgages underlying a securitization named BOAMS 2008-A. More than 40 percent of the 1,191 mortgages in the securitization did not comply with the bank's underwriting standards, according to the complaint.

"These misstatements and omissions concerned the quality and safety of the mortgages collateralizing the BOAMS 2008-A securitization, how it originated those mortgages and the likelihood that the 'prime' loans would perform as expected," the Justice Department said in its statement.

Threats of costly mortgage litigation have been dogging Bank of America for years.

"It has been shown repeatedly that the origination process at Bank of America and its subsidiaries failed to live up to their own internal guidelines and the resulting loans did not reflect the way they were characterized to investors," said Donald Hawthorne, a partner at Axinn Veltrop & Harkrider LLP, who has represented monoline insurers and RMBS investors in suits against mortgage originators, including Countrywide, relating to mortgage securities.

(More at the link. Nice to see DOJ actually doing something, anything. Via Occupy Fights Foreclosures.)
Posted by Fire Walk With Me | Wed Aug 7, 2013, 06:13 AM (3 replies)

New York Times endorses plutocracy!

http://www.salon.com/2013/08/05/new_york_times_endorses_plutocracy/

If you happened to have read the New York Times’ opinion section this weekend, you may have noticed you were told that the U.S. Senate – the body comprised primarily of millionaires – apparently needs more lawmakers who are very close to the wealthy.

Yes, despite every member of the upper house raising huge amounts of campaign money primarily from the American aristocracy, and despite the fact that legalized bribery results in votes that consistently defend the aristocracy’s economic interests at the expense of everyone else — the grey lady’s editorial board implored voters to see Senate candidates’ all-too-close relationship with America’s uber-rich not as something suspicious or repugnant, but as something commendable and worthy of reward.

This was the powerful message in the Times’ house editorial this weekend endorsing Newark Mayor Cory Booker’s candidacy in New Jersey’s upcoming special U.S. Senate election. Citing Booker’s success engineering a $100 million donation to Newark schools from Facebook’s Mark Zuckerberg (but conveniently not mentioning the ugly controversies surrounding the donation), the newspaper concluded its endorsement with a slap at Booker’s opponents – one that in a single sentence revealed everything you need to know about the elite media’s royalism (emphasis added):

Some of Mr. Booker’s opponents are trying to denigrate those assets — his fame, his ability to work with Republicans, his coziness with the moneyed class.


(More at the link.)
Posted by Fire Walk With Me | Mon Aug 5, 2013, 11:45 AM (1 replies)

New York Times endorses plutocracy!

http://www.salon.com/2013/08/05/new_york_times_endorses_plutocracy/

If you happened to have read the New York Times’ opinion section this weekend, you may have noticed you were told that the U.S. Senate – the body comprised primarily of millionaires – apparently needs more lawmakers who are very close to the wealthy.

Yes, despite every member of the upper house raising huge amounts of campaign money primarily from the American aristocracy, and despite the fact that legalized bribery results in votes that consistently defend the aristocracy’s economic interests at the expense of everyone else — the grey lady’s editorial board implored voters to see Senate candidates’ all-too-close relationship with America’s uber-rich not as something suspicious or repugnant, but as something commendable and worthy of reward.

This was the powerful message in the Times’ house editorial this weekend endorsing Newark Mayor Cory Booker’s candidacy in New Jersey’s upcoming special U.S. Senate election. Citing Booker’s success engineering a $100 million donation to Newark schools from Facebook’s Mark Zuckerberg (but conveniently not mentioning the ugly controversies surrounding the donation), the newspaper concluded its endorsement with a slap at Booker’s opponents – one that in a single sentence revealed everything you need to know about the elite media’s royalism (emphasis added):

Some of Mr. Booker’s opponents are trying to denigrate those assets — his fame, his ability to work with Republicans, his coziness with the moneyed class.


(More at the link.)
Posted by Fire Walk With Me | Mon Aug 5, 2013, 11:39 AM (0 replies)

Water privatization by the richest rich is happening now ("hydraulic empire") incl. the Bush family

Citigroup are a large player in this; note their presence twice among the following articles and the leaked memos linked at the end of this OP. I posted most of this back in March but am now adding the Citigroup links and Nestle video, which I and others have previously posted. Note that the Bush family have since the mid 2000s owned the world's largest aquifer:


Nestle are the 27th largest corporation in the world and the largest "foodstuff" interest. Here is video, beginning at about 1:58, of Nestle's then (2005) CEO clearly stating that water is not a human right, that it should be owned and sold.




8 Ways Privatization Has Brought Pain and Misery to American Life via xchrom
http://www.alternet.org/hard-times-usa/8-ways-privatization-has-brought-pain-and-misery-american-life

"A Citigroup economist gushed, 'Water as an asset class will, in my view, become eventually the single most important physical-commodity based asset class, dwarfing oil, copper, agricultural commodities and precious metals.'"



Profiting from Your Thirst as Global Elite Rush to Control Water Worldwide
http://climatesoscanada.org/blog/2013/02/15/profiting-from-your-thirst-as-global-elite-rush-to-control-water-worldwide/

MENTIONS CITIGROUP ACTION IN 2007:

Citigroup is aggressively raising funds for its war chest to participate in the coming tidal wave of infrastructure privatization: in 2007 it established a new unit called Citi Infrastructure Investors through its Citi Alternative Investments unit. According to Reuters, Citigroup “assembled some of the biggest names in the infrastructure business at the same time it is building a $3 billion fund, including $500 million of its own capital. The fund, according to a person familiar with the situation, will have only a handful of outside investors and will be focused on assets in developed markets” (May 16, 2007). Citigroup initially sought only U.S.$3 billion for its first infrastructure fund but was seeking U.S.$5 billion in April 2008 (Bloomberg, April 7, 2008).

Citigroup partnered with HSBC Bank, Prudential, and other minor partners to acquire U.K.’s water utility Kelda (Yorkshire Water) in November 2007. This week, Citigroup signed a 99-year lease with the City of Chicago for Chicago’s Midway Airport (it partnered with John Hancock Life Insurance Company and a Canadian private airport operator). Insiders said that Citigroup is among those bidding for the state-owned company Letiste Praha which operates the Prague Airport in the Czech Republic (Bloomberg, February 7, 2008).

The elite multinational and Wall Street banks and investment banks have been preparing and waiting for this golden moment for years. Over the past few years, they have amassed war chests of infrastructure funds to privatize water, municipal services, and utilities all over the world. It will be extremely difficult to reverse this privatization trend in water. (Emphasis mine)

snip

The lands purchased by the Bush family sit over not only South America’s largest aquifer — but the world’s as well — Acuifero Guaraní, which runs beneath Argentina, Brazil, Paraguay, and Uruguay. This aquifer is larger than Texas and California combined.

(So check that again...the Bush family own the world's largest aquifer. Think they're harmless when not in government?)


Bill C-45 removes 99% of Canada's lakes and rivers from the protected list

http://www.cbc.ca/news/canada/nova-scotia/story/2012/12/27/ns-protected-waterways-bill.html?cmp=rss

Greeks Stand Up to Protect Their Water From Privatization:
http://www.democraticunderground.com/10022168806

Nestle Group -"Access to Water Is Not Your Right"
http://www.democraticunderground.com/10022179129


Enron, an enormous supporter and contributor to George W. Bush, were early adopters of the hydraulic empire
(via KamaAina) :
http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Azurix

Azurix Corp. is a water services company, headquartered in Houston, Texas. The company owned and operated facilities in North America (mainly Canada), Europe, and South America. In 2007, Azurix was awarded a $165 million claim against the government of Argentina by an international arbitrator, the company is currently involved in a dispute over Argentina's refusal to pay the claim.

Azurix was formed when Enron Corporation purchased Wessex Water in 1998. In June 1999 it was part-floated on the NYSE stock exchange, with Enron retaining 34% ownership. The company was formed with an IPO of $800 million and an opening stock price of $22.00, which fell to $2.00 within two years. The business was a disaster for Enron, and in April 2001 Enron announced it would break up Azurix and sell its assets. Enron eventually sold Azurix North America and Azurix Industrial Operations to American Water Works for $141.5 million.

(Enron also met with Arnold Schwarzenegger before they intentionally caused the rolling power blackouts in California which inconvenienced Californians to the point of demanding a run-off election to replace the Governor...and Arnold “won”. Note that the same energy embargo tactic was used on Jimmy Carter by OPEC, who are Bush family friends. The same Bush who was head of the CIA and now is buying up water.)


Food Security in the Age of “Water Grabbing”
http://foodtank.org/news/2013/02/food-security-in-the-age-of-water-grabbing#.UTQaRuGLZsM.twitter


Note Citigroup's involvement. Read their thoughts and words in their own frank language in the three leaked "Plutonomy" memos.

Read the three leaked Citigroup Plutonomy memos, “Plutonomy: Buying Luxury, Explaining Global Imbalances”, “Revisiting Plutonomy: The Rich Getting Richer”, and "The Plutonomy Symposium: Rising Tides Lifting Yachts" :
http://our99angrypercent.wordpress.com/2011/11/27/download-citigroup-plutonomy-memos/

And this article only touches upon the water grab. Privatization of vital resources is ongoing world-wide. Saudis (Bush friends) seek to divest. Note that in the third memo, globalization is mentioned as a prime driver of Plutonomy.



Edit Aug. 15:

Texas town runs out of water after using it for fracking

http://www.motherjones.com/environment/2013/08/fracking-texas-drought-climate-change

"The day that we ran out of water I turned on my faucet and nothing was there and at that moment I knew the whole of Barnhart was down the tubes," she said, blinking back tears. "I went: 'Dear God, help us.' That was the first thought that came to mind."

snip

So what is a town like Barnhart to do? Fracking is a powerful drain on water supplies. In adjacent Crockett County, fracking accounts for up to 25 percent of water use, according to the groundwater conservation district. But Katharine Hayhoe, a climate scientist at Texas Tech University in Lubbock, argues fracking is not the only reason Texas is going dry—and nor is the drought. The latest shocks to the water system come after decades of overuse by ranchers, cotton farmers, and fast-growing, thirsty cities.

"We have large urban centers sucking water out of West Texas to put on their lands. We have a huge agricultural community, and now we have fracking which is also using water," she said. And then there is climate change.

West Texas has a long history of recurring drought, but under climate change, the Southwest has been experiencing record-breaking heat waves, further drying out the soil and speeding the evaporation of water in lakes and reservoirs. Underground aquifers failed to regenerate. "What happens is that climate change comes on top and in many cases it can be the final straw that breaks the camel's back, but the camel is already overloaded," said Hayhoe.

(More at the link.)



The ‘Wild West’ of groundwater: Billion-dollar Nestlé extracting B.C.’s drinking water for free

http://www.democraticunderground.com/10023464038
Posted by Fire Walk With Me | Mon Aug 5, 2013, 09:07 AM (97 replies)
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