Excerpts of Key News Articles in Major Media
Below are highly revealing excerpts of key news articles from the mainstream media suggesting major cover-ups.
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For an index to revealing excerpts of news articles on several dozen engaging topics, click here
What if elections don't matter?
2012-01-11, Fox News video clip
What if Democrats and Republicans were two wings of the same bird of prey? What if elections were actually useful tools of social control? What if they just provided the populace with meaningless participation in a process that validates an establishment that never meaningfully changes? What if that establishment doesn’t want and doesn’t have the consent of the governed? What if the two-party system were actually a mechanism used to limit so-called public opinion? What if there were more than two sides to every issue, but the two parties wanted to box you in to one of their corners? What if there’s no such thing as public opinion, because every thinking person has opinions that are uniquely his own? What if public opinion were just a manufactured narrative that makes it easier to convince people that if their views are different, there’s something wrong with that – or something wrong with them? What if the whole purpose of the Democratic and Republican parties was not to expand voters’ choices, but to limit them? What if the widely perceived differences between the two parties were just an illusion? What if the heart of government policy remains the same, no matter who’s in the White House? What if the heart of government policy remains the same, no matter what the people want? What if both parties just want power and are willing to have young people fight meaningless wars to enhance that power?
Note: The speaker on this Fox news clip, Andrew P. Napolitano, is a former judge of the Superior Court of New Jersey. His most recent book is It Is Dangerous to Be Right When the Government Is Wrong: The Case for Personal Freedom.
Ten years later, Guantanamo still harms us all
2012-01-11, San Francisco Chronicle (San Francisco's leading newspaper)
It has been 10 years since Guantanamo Bay became a prison. Today, 171 men are still held there with no real prospect of either trial or release. Bush administration officials have admitted ordering torture against prisoners in Guantanamo, Afghanistan, Iraq and secret sites in [other] countries, yet no one has been held to account for violating U.S. law. Their illegal actions and the recent passage - and signing by President Obama - of the National Defense Authorization Act have undermined fundamental structures of law and morality that are our heritage as Americans. More than 80 percent of Americans self-identified as "religious" in a 2011 Pew poll. Today, 312 U.S. faith groups are members of the National Religious Campaign Against Torture. Organized in 2006, it is a vehicle for people of faith seeking to denounce abusive practices by the United States. Under President Obama, we have held no one accountable for torture. With the passage of the Defense Act, indefinite detention without trial has become law ... including even American citizens captured on U.S. soil, a clear violation of the Fourth Amendment to the Constitution. The loss of habeas corpus rights under the Defense Act now puts every ordinary person at risk of indefinite detention. As citizens, it is our right and responsibility to demand that our government investigate the U.S. torture program and uphold our constitutional rights. As a nation of people of faith, this is our sacred duty.
Note: The author, Louise Specht, is the convener of the Bay Area Religious Campaign Against Torture, the Northern California affiliate of the National Religious Campaign Against Torture.
The US schools with their own police
2012-01-09, The Guardian (One of the UK's leading newspapers)
More and more US schools have police patrolling the corridors. Pupils are being arrested for throwing paper planes and failing to pick up crumbs from the canteen floor. Why is the state criminalising normal childhood behaviour? Like hundreds of schools in the state, and across large parts of the rest of the US, Fulmore Middle [school] has its own police force with officers in uniform who carry guns to keep order in the canteens, playgrounds and lessons. Each day, hundreds of schoolchildren appear before courts in Texas charged with offences such as swearing, misbehaving on the school bus or getting in to a punch-up in the playground. Children have been arrested for possessing cigarettes, wearing "inappropriate" clothes and being late for school. In 2010, the police gave close to 300,000 "Class C misdemeanour" tickets to children as young as six in Texas for offences in and out of school, which result in fines, community service and even prison time. What was once handled with a telling-off by the teacher or a call to parents can now result in arrest and a record that may cost a young person a place in college or a job years later. "We've taken childhood behaviour and made it criminal," said Kady Simpkins, a lawyer. "They're kids." The very young are not spared. Texas records show more than 1,000 tickets were issued to primary schoolchildren over the past six years .
Note: For a long list of bizarre arrests of children, for behavior not at all unusual, that have been reported in the mainstream media, click here.
Cambodia: Life sentence for former anti-drug head
2012-01-06, San Francisco Chronicle (San Francisco's leading newspaper)
The former head of Cambodia's antidrug office was sentenced to life in prison ... for masterminding a drug ring from his office, a court official said. Lt. Gen. Mok Dara, secretary-general of the National Authority for Combating Drugs until his arrest last January, faced more than 30 counts of bribery and drug trafficking and was given a life sentence. An associate, anti-drug officer Chea Leang, also received a life sentence, while a third defendant, Morn Doeun, who was at large, was sentenced to 25 years by the court in the northwestern province, which borders Thailand. The case, which lasted several weeks, was one of the largest to go through Cambodia's court system and involved the testimonies of scores of witnesses. Cambodia has been working in recent years to reduce corruption. Mok Dara's is the latest in a string of cases brought by the government's new Anti-Corruption Unit. Mok Dara maintained he was innocent, people attending the proceedings said. Nop Virak, a trial monitor at the Cambodian Center for Human Rights who observed the case, said Mok Dara's sentencing will serve as a warning to corrupt officials.
Note: How long before the rogue elements in Western governments running drug operations are arrested? It's only a matter of time.
I am sorry for the role I played in Fallujah
2011-12-22, The Guardian (One of the UK's leading newspapers)
It has been seven years since the end of the second siege of Fallujah – the US assault that left the city in ruins, killed thousands of civilians, and displaced hundreds of thousands more; the assault that poisoned a generation, plaguing the people who live there with cancers and their children with birth defects. It has been seven years and the lies that justified the assault still perpetuate false beliefs about what we did. Unlike most of my counterparts, I understand that I was the aggressor, and that the resistance fighters in Fallujah were defending their city. How can I begrudge the resistance in Fallujah for killing my friends, when I know that I would have done the same thing if I were in their place? How can I blame them when we were the aggressors? I carried a radio on my back that dropped the bombs that killed civilians and reduced Fallujah to rubble. If I were a Fallujan, I would have killed anyone like me. I would have had no choice. The fate of my city and my family would have depended on it. I would have killed the foreign invaders. [US soldiers] were killed and they killed others because of a political agenda in which they were just pawns. They were the iron fist of American empire, and an expendable loss in the eyes of their leaders. What we did to Fallujah cannot be undone. What I want to attack are the lies and false beliefs. I want to destroy the prejudices that prevented us from putting ourselves in the other's shoes and asking ourselves what we would have done if a foreign army invaded our country and laid siege to our city.
Note: For key reports from reliable, verifiable sources detailing atrocities carried out by the US military and its allies in the "global war on terror", click here.
Regulators approve nuclear reactor design for Southeast utilities
2011-12-22, Miami Herald
Federal regulators on [December 22] signed off on a next-generation nuclear reactor slated for Florida Power & Light's Turkey Point plant and five other utilities in the Southeast, paving the way for construction of the first new reactors in the U.S. in three decades. The Nuclear Regulatory Commission's approval of the Westinghouse AP 1000 design was a major milestone for the nuclear power industry, which hasn't built a new reactor since the Three Mile Island accident in Pennsylvania in 1979. Opponents of the AP 1000 ... bristled at the decision. [Some elected officials and] environmental groups ... contend the NRC "fast-tracked" the AP 1000 without thoroughly addressing potential safety concerns or incorporating lessons learned from the March meltdown of the nuclear plant in Fukushima, Japan, disabled by an earthquake and tsunami. Arnie Gunderson, an outside expert ... warned the design might be vulnerable to rust that could cause dangerous holes and cracks in the steel reactor containment vessel - a particular problem in the marine environment of Turkey Point. Another study, commissioned by NC Warn, a North Carolina anti-nuclear group, and Friends of the Earth, argued the safety margin for an accidental high pressure build-up inside the reactor was dangerously slim.
Note: For lots more on corporate and government corruption from reliable sources, click here and here.
Can babies teach school kids not to bully?
2011-12-21, Toronto Star (One of Toronto's leading newspapers)
Teacher Raya patrols a group of giggly kindergarten students, looking each so deeply in the eye that many squirm and bashfully reach for her toes. Her father carries her in his arms. Raya is not quite five months old. She’s teaching them about being kind and how to talk about their feelings so that later, they don’t terrorize each other. Teacher Raya, as they call her, is a “volunteer” with Roots of Empathy, [Canada's] oldest and largest anti-bullying program. Kids in 900 classrooms around the province [of Ontario] are taking similar lessons from similarly beautiful babies. So are kids in New Zealand, Seattle, the Isle of Man. . . It’s such a simple concept: if kids learn to empathize with babies — the most vulnerable humans — then their antennae for kindness will be turned on. Put another way, once they learn to worry about a baby’s feelings, they’ll start to worry about everyone’s. Since kindergarten teacher Mary Gordon launched it 16 years ago, the program’s effects have been analyzed by dozens of academics. Most of them conclude the program fosters “pro-social behaviour” and dampens aggression. A Manitoba study published earlier this year concluded the program cut student fights in half immediately and continued to “promote optimal social contact” three years later. It’s one thing to legislate against bullying, as Ontario Premier Dalton McGuinty has done with his Safe Schools Act. It’s quite another to stop kids from tormenting each other in the first place (the province has provided about $2 million annually [for] Roots of Empathy since 2009).
Note: For deeply inspiring reports from major media sources, click here.
Report Slams Dutch Catholic Church Over Sex Abuse
2011-12-16, NPR/Associated Press
As many as 20,000 children endured sexual abuse at Dutch Catholic institutions over the past 65 years, and church officials failed to adequately address it or help the victims, according to a long-awaited investigative report. Based on a survey of 34,000 people, the report estimated that 1 in 10 Dutch children suffered some form of sexual abuse — a figure that rose to 1 in 5 among children who spent part of their youth in an institution such as a boarding school or children's home, whether Catholic or not. "Sexual abuse of minors," it said bluntly, "occurs widely in Dutch society." The abuse ranged from "unwanted sexual advances" to rape, and abusers numbered in the hundreds and included priests, brothers and lay people who worked in religious orders and congregations. The number of victims who suffered abuse in church institutions likely lies somewhere between 10,000 and 20,000, according to the probe, which went back as far as 1945. The commission behind the investigation was set up last year by the Catholic Church under the leadership of a former government minister, Wim Deetman, a Protestant, who said there could be no doubt church leaders knew of the problem. "The idea that people did not know there was a risk ... is untenable," he told a news conference.
Note: For lots more on institutional secrecy from reliable, verifiable sources, click here.
Can Congress Steal Your Constitutional Freedoms?
2011-12-01, Fox News
Can the president use the military to arrest anyone he wants, keep that person away from a judge and jury, and lock him up for as long as he wants? In the Senate’s dark and terrifying vision of the Constitution, he can. Last week ... the Senate Armed Services Committee decided to meet in secret. Behind closed doors, it drafted an amendment to a bill appropriating money for the Pentagon. The amendment would permit the president to use the military for law enforcement purposes in the United States. Essentially, this legislation would enable the president to divert from the criminal justice system, and thus to divert from the protections of the Constitution, any person he pleases. And that person, under this terrifying bill, would have no recourse to a judge to require the president either to file charges against him or to set him free. The Fifth Amendment to the Constitution says, “No person shall be … deprived of life, liberty, or property, without due process of law.” Note, the Founders used the word “person.” Thus, the requirement of due process must be accorded to all human beings held by the government -- not just Americans, not just nice people, but all persons. If this legislation becomes law, it will be dangerous for anyone to be right when the government is wrong. It will be dangerous for all of us. Just consider what any president could get away with. Who would he make disappear first? Might it be his political opponents? Might it be you?
Note: The author of this op-ed, Andrew P. Napolitano, is a former judge of the Superior Court of New Jersey. His most recent book is It Is Dangerous to Be Right When the Government Is Wrong: The Case for Personal Freedom.
Secret Fed Loans Gave Banks $13 Billion Undisclosed to Congress
The Federal Reserve and the big banks fought for more than two years to keep details of the largest bailout in U.S. history a secret. Now, the rest of the world can see what it was missing. The Fed didn’t tell anyone which banks were in trouble so deep they required a combined $1.2 trillion on Dec. 5, 2008, their single neediest day. Bankers didn’t mention that they took tens of billions of dollars in emergency loans at the same time they were assuring investors their firms were healthy. And no one calculated until now that banks reaped an estimated $13 billion of income by taking advantage of the Fed’s below-market rates. Saved by the bailout, bankers lobbied against government regulations, a job made easier by the Fed, which never disclosed the details of the rescue to lawmakers even as Congress doled out more money and debated new rules aimed at preventing the next collapse. Details suggest taxpayers paid a price beyond dollars as the secret funding helped preserve a broken status quo and enabled the biggest banks to grow even bigger. “When you see the dollars the banks got, it’s hard to make the case these were successful institutions,” says Sherrod Brown, a Democratic Senator from Ohio who in 2010 introduced an unsuccessful bill to limit bank size. “This is an issue that can unite the Tea Party and Occupy Wall Street.”
Note: For a treasure trove of reports from reliable sources on corruption and collusion between government officials and the largest financial firms, click here.
Retired Police Captain Arrested At OWS
2011-11-17, Fox News (Philadelphia Fox affiliate)
A retired Philadelphia police captain has been arrested in New York at an Occupy Wall Street demonstration. Ray Lewis retired from the Philadelphia Police Department in 2004. It was Philadelphia police who confirmed Lewis' arrest in New York on Thursday morning. Any additional details, they said, would have to come from NYPD. First news of the arrest was broadcast over Twitter around 9:15 a.m. by the protest group ... stating, "Philly Police Captain (Retired) has just been ARRESTED!" The group then tweeted, "The arrested retired police captain's name is Captain Ray Lewis. Immense cheers and music as he is taken away." Video posted to YouTube by RT America and linked to by Occupy Wall Street appears to show Lewis' arrest. There were messages online stating that Lewis had joined the protesters, including a photo of him holding a sign that read "NYPD Don't Be Wall Street Mercenaries," and talking with a helmeted New York police officer at Zuccotti Park.
Note: For a four-minute video interview with Officer Lewis, click here. For a treasure trove of reports from reliable sources on the reasons why protestors worldwide are occupying their city centers to protest against the "1 percent", click here.
JPMorgan Joins Goldman Keeping Italy Derivatives Risk in Dark
JPMorgan Chase & Co. and Goldman Sachs Group Inc., among the world's biggest traders of credit derivatives, disclosed to shareholders that they have sold protection on more than $5 trillion of debt globally. Just don't ask them how much of that was issued by Greece, Italy, Ireland, Portugal and Spain, known as the GIIPS. As concerns mount that those countries may not be creditworthy, investors are being kept in the dark about how much risk U.S. banks face from a default. Firms including Goldman Sachs and JPMorgan don't provide a full picture of potential losses and gains in such a scenario, giving only net numbers or excluding some derivatives altogether. Goldman Sachs discloses only what it calls “funded” exposure to GIIPS debt -- $4.16 billion before hedges and $2.46 billion after, as of Sept. 30. Those amounts exclude commitments or contingent payments, such as credit-default swaps. JPMorgan said ... its net exposure was no more than $1.5 billion, with a portion coming from debt and equity securities. The company didn't disclose gross numbers or how much of the $1.5 billion came from swaps, leaving investors wondering whether the notional value of CDS sold could be as high as $150 billion.
Note: For a treasure trove of reports from reliable sources on the reasons why protestors worldwide are occupying their city centers to protest against the "1 percent", click here.
Armed forces minister sorry for misleading MPs over depleted uranium
2011-11-14, The Guardian (One of the UK's leading newspapers)
The armed forces minister has been forced to apologise over misleading statements he made regarding the legality and dangers of depleted uranium weapons. Nick Harvey admitted that he had inadvertently misled MPs about a Ministry of Defence review that he said had concluded the weapons were permissible on humanitarian and environmental grounds under the Geneva conventions. It subsequently emerged that the review had never happened. The revelations come as a cross-party campaign is launched to pile pressure on the MoD to phase out the use of depleted uranium (DU). The tank shells that depend on it have to be renewed in 2013. The British army fired shells containing 2.3 tonnes of DU during the Gulf wars in 1990-91 and 2003. DU is used to harden 'Charm3' armour-piercing shells carried by British Challenger tanks. In 1998 the UK government ratified additional protocol 1 of the Geneva conventions. Article 36 of that requires that all weapons are subject to a legal review to assess whether they are "capable of being used discriminately", or cause "widespread and severe damage to the natural environment".
Note: For key reports from reliable sources on government corruption, click here.
The bankers' blockade of WikiLeaks must end
2011-10-24, The Guardian (One of the UK's leading newspapers)
In December 2010 three of the world's biggest payment providers, Visa, Mastercard and Paypal, cut off funding to WikiLeaks. Ten months later, Julian Assange has announced the whistleblowing site will suspend operations until the blockade is lifted – and warned WikiLeaks does not have the money to continue into 2012 at current levels of funding. The banking blockade against WikiLeaks is one of the most sinister developments in recent years, and perhaps the most extreme example in a western democracy of extrajudicial actions aimed at stifling free speech. Payment companies representing more than 97% of the global market have shut off the funding taps between WikiLeaks and those who would donate to it. Unlike many of the country's leading corporations, WikiLeaks has neither been charged with, nor convicted of, any crime at either state, federal, or international level. Visa and Mastercard are already inescapable. As the world becomes ever-more digital ... they will become still more pervasive. If they are allowed to cut off payment to lawful organisations with whom they disagree, the US's first amendment, the European convention on human rights' article 10, and all other legal free speech protections become irrelevant. Those who value free expression, whether they like WikiLeaks or loathe it, should hope it wins its current battle.
Note: For more on this from BBC, click here.
Dear White House: Please Tell Us the Truth About E.T.
2011-10-18, Wall Street Journal
When the White House promised to answer citizen petitions on the most pressing problems of the day, it may not have had extraterrestrial life in mind. More than 10,000 petitions have poured in since the new initiative was announced last month in a bid to bring government closer to the people. [Among the] Top Ten Petitions: Abolish the TSA, and use its monstrous budget to fund more sophisticated, less intrusive counter-terrorism intelligence -- 26,328 signatures; End the destructive, wasteful and counterproductive "War on Drugs" -- 16,422 signatures; Formally acknowledge an extraterrestrial presence engaging the human race - Disclosure -- 10,316 signatures. Stephen Bassett ... wants to end the "truth embargo," or what he believes is the government's deliberate decision to withhold what it has long known about the existence of extraterrestrial life. "The fact is that there is an extraterrestrial presence. I know this because I'm familiar with the research and a couple hundred government witnesses have come forward in the last couple years," he said. "Acknowledging this E.T. presence is about open government." Mr. Bassett decided to post a petition as soon as he heard about the opportunity and immediately sent a link to his 10,000-person email list.
Note: For excellent information on UFOs and the possibility of extraterrestrial visitation, check out our UFO Information Center.
Tepco: radiation from Fukushima plant declines further
2011-10-17, Scientific American/Reuters
The operator of Japan's tsunami-hit Fukushima nuclear power plant [Tokyo Electric Power (Tepco)] said the amount of radiation being emitted from the complex has halved from a month ago, in the latest sign that efforts to bring the plant under control are progressing. In light of the progress being made in cooling its damaged reactors, which suffered nuclear fuel meltdowns in the first days of the crisis, Tepco formally brought forward its plan to bring the plant to a state of "cold shutdown" within this year. Technically, a cold shutdown is a state in which water used to cool nuclear fuel rods remains below 100 degrees Celsius, preventing the fuel from reheating. Declaring a cold shutdown will have repercussions well beyond the plant as it is one of the criteria the government said must be met before it begins allowing about 80,000 residents evacuated from within a 20 km (12 mile) radius of the plant to go home. Japan faces a massive cleanup task if these residents are to be returned home -- the environmental ministry says about 2,400 square km (930 square miles) of land surrounding Daiichi may need decontamination. Even if a cold shutdown is declared Tepco has acknowledged that it may not be able to remove the fuel from the reactors for another 10 years and that the cleanup at the plant could take several decades.
Note: For more on the Fukushima situation from the standpoint of the tens of thousands of evacuees, click here.
Marathon Mom: Pregnant Woman Finishes Race, Delivers Baby
2011-10-10, ABC New
Amber Miller accomplished two monumental feats this weekend. Days from her due date, the 27-year-old joined 45,000 other runners to participate in Sunday's Bank of America Chicago Marathon and then gave birth to a baby girl named June hours later. Miller, an avid runner, said she signed up for the 26.2-mile race before finding out she was pregnant. She said she never expected to finish the race. "I was having a conversation with my parents and said, 'You know what? I have no plans of actually finishing,'" she told reporters at Central DuPage Hospital this morning. "I was planning on running half, skipping to the end, then walking across the finish line." But Miller and her husband started running, and just kept going. They ran part of the race and walked the second half as her contractions started. It took the couple 6.5 hours to finish. She said she grabbed something to eat and the two headed to the hospital. "It was very interesting hearing people's reaction," Miller said about crowds watching an extremely pregnant woman among the runners. "I've been running up to this point anyway, so I'm used to it." At 7 pounds, 13 ounces, baby June entered the world at 10:29 p.m. Sunday, just hours after her parents crossed the finish line.
Holder's 'Fast and Furious' comments in question
2011-10-05, San Francisco Chronicle (San Francisco's leading newspaper)
Rep. Lamar Smith, chairman of the House Judiciary Committee, ... demanded an independent investigation of whether Attorney General Eric Holder misled Congress on what he knew about the botched gun-tracking operation known as "Fast and Furious" - and when he found out about it. The Associated Press reported that the George W. Bush administration conducted a program similar to Fast and Furious, in which Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms and Explosives agents were instructed to let Mexican drug cartel straw purchasers buy guns in the Phoenix area to follow the trail to higher-ups. Known as Operation Wide Receiver, the Bush-era operation also let guns be transferred to suspected arms traffickers. Justice Department prosecutors have brought charges against nine people involved in the operation, according to AP; two have pleaded guilty. Fast and Furious was meant to take down Mexican cartels importing U.S.-bought weapons and shipping drugs to the United States. Phoenix-based ATF agents allowed the gun purchases so they could take down cartel bosses rather than only arresting lower-level purchasers. But the agents lost track of more than 1,000 firearms during the operation last year. Several were later found at the scenes of Mexican drug crimes, according to a report by the House oversight committee.
Note: For key reports from major media sources on government corruption, click here.
Parents delaying, skipping recommended vaccines
More than one in 10 parents use an "alternative" vaccination schedule for their young children, including refusing vaccines altogether, according to a U.S. survey ... from the University of Michigan in Ann Arbor. The Internet survey included 748 parents of kids between the ages of six months and six years. Of those, 13 percent said they used some type of vaccination schedule that differed from the CDC recommendations. That included refusing some vaccines or delaying vaccines until kids were older -- mostly because parents thought that "seemed safer." In addition, two percent of parents refused any vaccination altogether, according to findings published in Pediatrics. Even among parents who did follow the recommended schedule, about one-quarter said in the survey they thought delaying vaccines would be safer or that the expert-backed schedule wasn't the best one to follow. Parents who skip or delay vaccines typically cite safety concerns, researchers said.
Note: For many major media articles posing serious questions on the safety of many vaccines, click here. For a powerfully revealing article showing just how dangerous vaccines can be to children's health, see the excellent article by the respected Dr. Mercola available here.
OnStar's 'brazen' data tracking comes under fire
Your OnStar-equipped car can share an awful lot about your driving habits -- even if you're no longer an OnStar customer. A senator from New York has asked the Federal Trade Commission to open an investigation into vehicle tracking by General Motors' OnStar division. Two other senators issued calls for the company to explain and reconsider its tracking policies. OnStar, which provides a variety of services including vehicle diagnostics, driving directions and automated 911 calls to owners of mostly GM vehicles, recently announced that it reserves the right to track and sell information about vehicles' location and speed even after the driver has stopped subscribing to the service. OnStar, which has around 6 million subscribers, relies on GPS tracking and other systems built into the car. Senator Charles Schumer, a Democrat from New York,... called the tracking "one of the most brazen invasions of privacy in recent memory." Senators Al Franken and Christopher Coons, both Democrats, sent a letter to OnStar last week saying that the company's actions "appear to violate basic principles of privacy and fairness." OnStar reserves the right to sell "anonymized" information collected from vehicles to outside companies. "Anonymized" data is aggregated on cannot be traced back to any individual vehicle or person. But hackers have been able to tease out individual user information from supposedly anonymized data, Schumer noted in his announcement.
Note: For more on corporate and government privacy invasions, see the deeply revealing reports from reliable major media sources available here.