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News Articles
Excerpts of Key News Articles in Major Media


Below are highly revealing excerpts of key news articles from the media suggesting major cover-ups and corruption. Links are provided to the full news articles for verification. If any link fails to function, read this webpage. These news articles are listed by order of importance. You can also explore the articles listed by order of the date of the news article or by the date posted. By choosing to educate ourselves and to spread the word, we can and will build a brighter future.

Note: Explore our full index to revealing excerpts of key major media news articles on dozens of engaging topics. And read excerpts from 20 of the most revealing news articles ever published.


Former astronaut: Man not alone in universe
2009-04-20, CNN
http://www.cnn.com/2009/TECH/04/20/ufo.conference/index.html

Former NASA astronaut Edgar Mitchell, who was part of the 1971 Apollo 14 moon mission, asserted Monday that extraterrestrial life exists, and that the truth is being concealed by the U.S. and other governments. He delivered his remarks during an appearance at the National Press Club following the conclusion of the fifth annual X-Conference, a meeting of UFO activists and researchers studying the possibility of alien life forms. Mitchell grew up in Roswell, New Mexico, which some UFO believers maintain was the site of a UFO crash in 1947. He said residents of his hometown "had been hushed and told not to talk about their experience by military authorities. And being a local boy and having been to the moon, they considered me reliable enough to whisper in my ear their particular story." Roughly 10 years ago, Mitchell claimed, he was finally given an appointment at Pentagon to discuss what he had been told. An unnamed admiral working for the Joint Chiefs of Staff promised to uncover the truth behind the Roswell story, Mitchell said. The stories of a UFO crash "were confirmed," but the admiral was then denied access when he "tried to get into the inner workings of that process." The same admiral, Mitchell claimed, now denies the story. "I urge those who are doubtful: Read the books, read the lore, start to understand what has really been going on. Because there really is no doubt we are being visited," he said. "The universe that we live in is much more wondrous, exciting, complex and far-reaching than we were ever able to know up to this point in time."

Note: Astronaut Mitchell has spoken openly of this in the media numerous times in the past. For more on this, click here. For a concise summary of evidence for UFOs and extra-terrestrial visitors presented by many highly-respected and credible former government and military officials, click here.


Officials Say U.S. Wiretaps Exceeded Law
2009-04-16, New York Times
http://www.nytimes.com/2009/04/16/us/16nsa.html?partner=rss&emc=rss&pagewante...

The National Security Agency intercepted private e-mail messages and phone calls of Americans in recent months on a scale that went beyond the broad legal limits established by Congress last year, government officials said in recent interviews. Several intelligence officials, as well as lawyers briefed about the matter, said the N.S.A. had been engaged in “overcollection” of domestic communications of Americans. They described the practice as significant and systemic. The legal and operational problems surrounding the N.S.A.’s surveillance activities have come under scrutiny from the Obama administration, Congressional intelligence committees and a secret national security court. Congressional investigators say they hope to determine if any violations of Americans’ privacy occurred. It is not clear to what extent the agency may have actively listened in on conversations or read e-mail messages of Americans without proper court authority, rather than simply obtained access to them. While the N.S.A.’s operations in recent months have come under examination, new details are also emerging about earlier domestic-surveillance activities, including the agency’s attempt to wiretap a member of Congress, without court approval, on an overseas trip. After a contentious three-year debate that was set off by the disclosure in 2005 of the program of wiretapping without warrants that President George W. Bush approved after the Sept. 11 attacks, Congress gave the N.S.A. broad new authority to collect, without court-approved warrants, vast streams of international phone and e-mail traffic as it passed through American telecommunications gateways.

Note: For further disturbing reports from reliable sources on government efforts to establish total surveillance systems, click here.


Finding inspiration -- in reality TV
2009-04-16, USA Today
http://content.usatoday.com/communities/religion/post/2009/04/65566137/1

Religion and spirituality blogs today are buzzing about the "inspirational" performance of Susan Boyle, an ordinary-looking 47-year-old Scottish woman whose anything-but-ordinary voice stopped would-be snarky commenters in their tracks on the reality TV show Britain's Got Talent. In Beliefnet's religion and pop culture blog, Douglas Howe comments on the transformation of the skeptical audience the moment Boyle opened her mouth and began to sing: They loved her! They were touched by her raw talent, her beautiful voice. The part about each of us that is quick to judge is also quick to respond to excellence and beauty. We should be quicker to look for the beauty in people, and I'm not sure our media-driven culture trains us to do that. Rev. James Martin in America magazine's blog In All Things finds a homily here: The world generally looks askance at people like Susan Boyle, if it sees them at all. Without classic good looks, without work, without a spouse, living in a small town, people like Susan Boyle may not seem particularly "important." But God sees the real person, and understands the value of each individual's gifts: rich or poor, young or old, single or married, matron or movie star, lucky or unlucky in life. God knows us. And loves us.

Note: For an engaging article with the highly inspiring performance of Susan Boyle, click here.


Communities print their own currency to keep cash flowing
2009-04-10, USA Today
http://usatoday30.usatoday.com/money/economy/2009-04-05-scrip_N.htm

A small but growing number of cash-strapped communities are printing their own money. Borrowing from a Depression-era idea, they are aiming to help consumers make ends meet and support struggling local businesses. Businesses and individuals form a network to print currency. Shoppers buy it at a discount — say, 95 cents for $1 value — and spend the full value at stores that accept the currency. Workers with dwindling wages are paying for groceries, yoga classes and fuel with Detroit Cheers, Ithaca Hours in New York, Plenty in North Carolina or BerkShares in Massachusetts. Ed Collom, a University of Southern Maine sociologist who has studied local currencies, says they encourage people to buy locally. Merchants, hurting because customers have cut back on spending, benefit as consumers spend the local cash. Jackie Smith of South Bend, Ind., who is working to launch a local currency, [said] "It reinforces the message that having more control of the economy in local hands can help you cushion yourself from the blows of the marketplace." During the Depression, local governments, businesses and individuals issued currency, known as scrip, to keep commerce flowing when bank closings led to a cash shortage. Pittsboro, N.C., is reviving the Plenty, a defunct local currency created in 2002. It is being printed in denominations of $1, $5, $20 and $50. A local bank will exchange $9 for $10 worth of Plenty. "We're a wiped-out small town in America," says Lyle Estill, president of Piedmont Biofuels, which accepts the Plenty. "This will strengthen the local economy. ... The nice thing about the Plenty is that it can't leave here."

Note: For a treasure trove of great news articles which will inspire you to make a difference, click here.


"Geoengineering" To Fight Global Warming?
2009-04-09, CBS News/Associated Press
http://www.cbsnews.com/stories/2009/04/08/tech/main4930539.shtml

Tinkering with Earth's climate to chill runaway global warming - a radical idea once dismissed out of hand - is being discussed by the White House as a potential emergency option, the president's new science adviser [John Holdren] said. The concept of using technology to purposely cool the climate is called geoengineering. One option raised by Holdren and proposed by a Nobel Prize-winning scientist includes shooting pollution particles into the upper atmosphere to reflect the sun's rays. Using such an experimental measure is only being thought of as a last resort, Holdren said. "It's got to be looked at," he said. "We don't have the luxury ... of ruling any approach off the table." At first, Holdren characterized the potential need to technologically tinker with the climate as just his personal view. However, he went on to say he has raised it in administration discussions. The 65-year-old physicist is far from alone in taking geoengineering seriously. The National Academy of Sciences is making it the subject of the first workshop in its new climate challenges program for policymakers, scientists and the public. The British Parliament has also discussed the idea. At an international meeting of climate scientists last month in Copenhagen, 15 talks dealt with different aspects of geoengineering. The American Meteorological Society is crafting a policy statement that says "it is prudent to consider geoengineering's potential, to understand its limits and to avoid rash deployment."

Note: For lots more solid evidence showing that secret geoengineering programs already have been and currently are being carried out, click here. Did you know that in his 1978 book Ecoscience, Holdren, Obama's science advisor, also discussed forced mandatory abortions and infertility drugs being added to water systems as ways of controlling the population? Makes you wonder...


Report Outlines Medical Workers’ Role in Torture
2009-04-07, New York Times
http://www.nytimes.com/2009/04/07/world/07detain.html?partner=rss&emc=rss&pag...

Medical personnel were deeply involved in the abusive interrogation of terrorist suspects held overseas by the Central Intelligence Agency, including torture, and their participation was a “gross breach of medical ethics,” a long-secret report by the International Committee of the Red Cross concluded. Based on statements by 14 prisoners who belonged to Al Qaeda and were moved to Guantánamo Bay, Cuba, in late 2006, Red Cross investigators concluded that medical professionals working for the C.I.A. monitored prisoners undergoing waterboarding, apparently to make sure they did not drown. Medical workers were also present when guards confined prisoners in small boxes, shackled their arms to the ceiling, kept them in frigid cells and slammed them repeatedly into walls, the report said. Facilitating such practices, which the Red Cross described as torture, was a violation of medical ethics even if the medical workers’ intentions had been to prevent death or permanent injury, the report said. But it found that the medical professionals’ role was primarily to support the interrogators, not to protect the prisoners, and that the professionals had “condoned and participated in ill treatment.” At times, according to the detainees’ accounts, medical workers “gave instructions to interrogators to continue, to adjust or to stop particular methods.” The Red Cross report was completed in 2007. It was obtained by Mark Danner, a journalist who has written extensively about torture, and posted Monday night with an article by Mr. Danner on the Web site of The New York Review of Books.

Note: Much of content of the Red Cross report was revealed in a March article by Mr. Danner and in a 2008 book, The Dark Side, by Jane Mayer, but the reporting of the Red Cross investigators’ conclusions on medical ethics and other issues are new.


Traces of explosives in 9/11 dust, scientists say
2009-04-06, Deseret News (One of Salt Lake City's leading newspapers)
http://www.deseretnews.com/article/0,5143,705295677,00.html

Tiny red and gray chips found in the dust from the collapse of the World Trade Center contain highly explosive materials — proof, according to a former BYU professor, that 9/11 is still a sinister mystery. Physicist Steven E. Jones, who retired from Brigham Young University in 2006 after the school recoiled from the controversy surrounding his 9/11 theories, is one of nine authors on a paper published last week in the online, peer-reviewed Open Chemical Physics Journal. Also listed as authors are BYU physics professor Jeffrey Farrer and a professor of nanochemistry at the University of Copenhagen in Denmark. For several years, Jones has theorized that pre-positioned explosives, not fires from jet fuel, caused the rapid, symmetrical collapse of the two World Trade Center buildings, plus the collapse of a third building, WTC-7. The newest research, according to the journal authors, shows that dust from the collapsing towers contained a "nano-thermite" material that is highly explosive. A layer of dust lay over parts of Manhattan immediately following the collapse of the towers, and it was samples of this dust that Jones and fellow researchers requested in a 2006 paper, hoping to determine "the whole truth of the events of that day." They eventually tested four samples they received from New Yorkers. Red/gray chips ... were found in all four dust samples. The chips were then analyzed using scanning electron microscopy and other high-tech tools. The red layer of the chips, according to the researchers, contains a "highly energetic" form of thermite.

Note: For the full text of this path-breaking scientific report, click here. Note that other major media failed to pick up this important news, though you can watch a Dutch news report (with English subtitles) on YouTube available here. For more key reports on the cutting-edge research of Prof. Steven Jones, click here.


Communities print their own currency to keep cash flowing
2009-04-05, USA Today
http://www.usatoday.com/money/economy/2009-04-05-scrip_N.htm

A small but growing number of cash-strapped communities are printing their own money. Borrowing from a Depression-era idea, they are aiming to help consumers make ends meet and support struggling local businesses. The systems generally work like this: Businesses and individuals form a network to print currency. Shoppers buy it at a discount — say, 95 cents for $1 value — and spend the full value at stores that accept the currency. Ed Collom, a University of Southern Maine sociologist who has studied local currencies, says they encourage people to buy locally. Merchants, hurting because customers have cut back on spending, benefit as consumers spend the local cash. "We wanted to make new options available," says Jackie Smith of South Bend, Ind., who is working to launch a local currency. "It reinforces the message that having more control of the economy in local hands can help you cushion yourself from the blows of the marketplace." About a dozen communities have local currencies, says Susan Witt, founder of BerkShares in the Berkshires region of western Massachusetts. She expects more to do it. Under the BerkShares system, a buyer goes to one of 12 banks and pays $95 for $100 worth of BerkShares, which can be spent in 370 local businesses. Since its start in 2006, the system, the largest of its kind in the country, has circulated $2.3 million worth of BerkShares. During the Depression, local governments, businesses and individuals issued currency, known as scrip, to keep commerce flowing when bank closings led to a cash shortage."


Judge Rules Some Prisoners at Bagram Have Right of Habeas Corpus
2009-04-04, New York Times
http://www.nytimes.com/2009/04/03/washington/03bagram.html?partner=rss&emc=rs...

A federal judge ruled on Thursday that some prisoners held by the United States military in Afghanistan have a right to challenge their imprisonment, dealing a blow to government efforts to detain terrorism suspects for extended periods without court oversight. In a 53-page ruling that rejected a claim of unfettered executive power advanced by both the Bush and Obama administrations, United States District Judge John D. Bates said that three detainees at the United States’ Bagram Air Base had the same legal rights that the Supreme Court last year granted to prisoners held at the American naval base in Guantánamo Bay, Cuba. The three detainees — two Yemenis and a Tunisian — say that they were captured outside Afghanistan and taken to Bagram, and that they have been imprisoned for more than six years without trials. Arguing that they were not enemy combatants, the detainees want a civilian judge to review the evidence against them and order their release, under the constitutional right of habeas corpus. The importance of Bagram as a holding site for terrorism suspects captured outside Afghanistan and Iraq has increased under the Obama administration, which prohibited the Central Intelligence Agency from using its secret prisons for long-term detention and ordered the military prison at Guantánamo closed within a year. The administration had sought to preserve Bagram as a haven where it could detain terrorism suspects beyond the reach of American courts, telling Judge Bates in February that it agreed with the Bush administration’s view that courts had no jurisdiction over detainees there.

Note: For key articles from major media sources on threats to civil liberties, click here.


Revelations of the wholesale greed and blatant transgressions of Wall Street
2009-04-03, PBS Bill Moyers Journal
http://www.pbs.org/moyers/journal/04032009/transcript1.html

BILL MOYERS: For months now, revelations of the wholesale greed and blatant transgressions of Wall Street have reminded us that "The Best Way to Rob a Bank Is to Own One." In fact, the man you're about to meet wrote a book with just that title. Bill Black, ... what's your definition of fraud? WILLIAM K. BLACK: Fraud is deceit. And the essence of fraud is, "I create trust in you, and then I betray that trust, and get you to give me something of value." And as a result, there's no more effective acid against trust than fraud, especially fraud by top elites, and that's what we have. Well, The way that you do it is to make really bad loans, because they pay better. Then you grow extremely rapidly, in other words, you're a Ponzi-like scheme. And the third thing you do is we call it leverage. That just means borrowing a lot of money, and the combination creates a situation where you have guaranteed record profits in the early years. That makes you rich, through the bonuses that modern executive compensation has produced. It also makes it inevitable that there's going to be a disaster down the road. BILL MOYERS: So you're ... saying that CEOs of some of these banks and mortgage firms in order to increase their own personal income, deliberately set out to make bad loans? WILLIAM K. BLACK: Yes. BILL MOYERS: If I wanted to go looking for the parties to this, with a good bird dog, where would you send me? WILLIAM K. BLACK: Well, that's exactly what hasn't happened. We haven't looked, all right? You'd look at the specialty lenders. The lenders that did almost all of their work in the sub-prime and what's called Alt-A, liars' loans.

Note: William K. Black is the former senior regulator who cracked down on banks during the savings and loan crisis of the 1980s. He is now an Associate Professor of Economics and Law at the University of Missouri. The video of this fascinating interview is available here. For a powerfully revealing archive of reports from reliable sources on the hidden realities of the financial bailout, click here.


Why We Must Fix Our Prisons
2009-03-29, Parade magazine
http://www.parade.com/news/2009/03/why-we-must-fix-our-prisons.html

America's criminal justice system has deteriorated to the point that it is a national disgrace. Its irregularities and inequities cut against the notion that we are a society founded on fundamental fairness. Our failure to address this problem has caused the nation's prisons to burst their seams with massive overcrowding, even as our neighborhoods have become more dangerous. We are wasting billions of dollars and diminishing millions of lives. We need to fix the system. Doing so will require a major nationwide recalculation of who goes to prison and for how long and of how we address the long-term consequences of incarceration. The United States has by far the world's highest incarceration rate. With 5% of the world's population, our country now houses nearly 25% of the world's reported prisoners. We currently incarcerate 756 inmates per 100,000 residents, a rate nearly five times the average worldwide of 158 for every 100,000. All told, about one in every 31 adults in the United States is in prison, in jail, or on supervised release. This all comes at a very high price to taxpayers: Local, state, and federal spending on corrections adds up to about $68 billion a year. Our overcrowded, ill-managed prison systems are places of violence, physical abuse, and hate, making them breeding grounds that perpetuate and magnify the same types of behavior we purport to fear. Post-incarceration re-entry programs are haphazard or, in some places, nonexistent, making it more difficult for former offenders who wish to overcome the stigma of having done prison time and become full, contributing members of society.

Note: The author of this analysis, Senator Jim Webb (D. Va.), is a PARADE Contributing Editor and the author of nine books, including A Time to Fight.


Navy scientist announces possible cold fusion reactions
2009-03-23, Houston Chronicle (Houston's leading newspaper)
http://www.chron.com/disp/story.mpl/front/6333164.html

A U.S. Navy researcher announced today that her lab has produced “significant” new results that indicate cold fusion-like reactions. If the work by analytical chemist Pamela Mosier-Boss and her colleagues is confirmed, it could open the door to a cheap, near-limitless reservoir of energy. Devising a fusion-based source of energy on Earth has long been a “clean-energy” holy grail of physicists. A small group of scientists has [tried] to produce fusion reactions at low temperatures. If such experiments did produce fusion reactions, they would generate highly energetic neutrons as a byproduct. These are what Mosier-Boss says her San Diego-based group has found. “If you have fusion going on, then you have to have neutrons,” she said. “But we do not know if fusion is actually occurring. It could be some other nuclear reaction.” Today’s announcement is based partly on research published by Mosier-Boss’ group last year in the journal Naturwissenschaften. The announcement may turn heads, given its stage at the American Chemical Society’s big meeting and the fact that the organization promoted it to science journalists in advance. “It’s big,” said Steven Krivit, founder of the New Energy Times publication, which has tracked cold fusion developments for two decades. “What we’re talking about may be more than anybody actually expected,” he said. “We’re talking about a new field of science that’s a hybrid between chemistry and physics.”

Note: For a powerful documentary showing a major cover-up around cold fusion, click here. Many highly esteemed scientists have repeatedly demonstrated the reality of cold fusion, only to have their research sometimes ruthlessly shut down. For many hopeful reports from reliable sources on the array of new energy developments currently underway, click here.


Israel soldier calls order during Gaza assault 'murder'
2009-03-21, Los Angeles Times
http://www.latimes.com/news/nationworld/world/la-fg-gaza-israeli-troops21-200...

Israelis on Friday got a fuller dose of rank-and-file angst over their army's winter assault on the Gaza Strip, as newspapers elaborated on allegations that commanders created a permissive attitude toward the killing of civilians. Soldiers' accounts of two killings of women and children appeared Thursday in Haaretz and Maariv. Both papers followed up Friday with lengthy excerpts of the soldiers’ comments about confusion and doubt over the rules of engagement during the 22-day offensive, which left an estimated 1,400 Palestinians dead. The accounts came from a Feb. 13 discussion at a military preparatory academy. AVIV: At first the specified action was to go into a house ... with an armored personnel carrier ... and start shooting inside. I call this murder. We were supposed to go up floor by floor, and any person we identified, we were supposed to shoot. I initially asked myself, "Where is the logic?" They said it was permissible because anyone who remained in the sector was in effect condemned, a terrorist, because they hadn't fled. I didn't really understand. They don't have anywhere to flee to. ... This scared me a bit. I tried to exert some influence I try to explain to the guy that not everyone in there is a terrorist, and that after he kills, say, three children and four mothers, we'll go upstairs and kill another 20 or so people. I tried to explain why we had to let them leave. It didn't really help. This is really frustrating, to see that they understand that inside Gaza you are allowed to do anything you want.

Note: For many revelations of the realities of the wars in the Middle East and Afghanistan, click here.


How Israelis, Islamists dehumanize each other
2009-03-21, Toronto Star
http://www.thestar.com/News/World/article/606064

Two Israeli newspapers published disturbing accounts this week about misconduct by Israeli soldiers during this country's January offensive in Gaza – and one statement ... conveyed an over-riding state of mind, one that enabled at least some Israeli soldiers to carry out some thoroughly loathsome deeds while they were deployed in Gaza – including, it seems, the cold-blooded murder of Palestinian civilians. "I don't know how to describe it," said the soldier in question, a squad leader who is clearly troubled by much of what he saw. "The lives of Palestinians, let's say, is something much, much less important than the lives of our soldiers." Psychologists have at least a couple of terms for the tendency of humans to view their adversaries as springing from a lower order of being. Known either as pseudo-speciation or dehumanization, the phenomenon is as ancient as the Bible and as common nowadays as olive trees in the Holy Land. If there is one man in this country who has explored the dark side of Israel's heart, it is Yehuda Shaul, director of Breaking the Silence, an organization that collects and publishes accounts by Israeli soldiers about their sometimes brutal behaviour while on duty in the Palestinian territories. Shaul says ... "The soldiers say: `Everyone is an enemy. Everyone here is a legitimate target.' That was the notion."

Note: For a former Marine Corps general's analysis of the purposes served by the dehumanizaton of the "enemy" inculcated in soldiers by their officers, click here.


Risky therapy may cream peanut allergy
2009-03-15, MSNBC/Associated Press
http://www.msnbc.msn.com/id/29707036

Scientists have the first evidence that life-threatening peanut allergies may be cured one day. A few kids now are allergy-free thanks to a scary treatment — tiny amounts of the very food that endangered them. Don’t try this at home. Doctors monitored the youngsters closely in case they needed rescue, and there’s no way to dice a peanut as small as the treatment doses required. But over several years, the children’s bodies learned to tolerate peanuts. Immune-system tests show no sign of remaining allergy in five youngsters, and others can withstand amounts that once would have left them wheezing or worse. “We’re optimistic that they have lost their peanut allergy,” said the lead researcher, Dr. Wesley Burks, Duke’s allergy chief. Rhonda Cassada['s] 7-year-old son, Ryan, has been labeled allergy-free for two years and counting. It’s a big change for a child who couldn’t tolerate one-sixth of a peanut when he entered the study at age 2 1/2. By 5, Ryan could eat a whopping 15 peanuts at a time with no sign of a reaction. More rigorous research is under way to confirm the pilot study, released Sunday at a meeting of the American Academy of Asthma and Immunology. If it pans out, the approach could mark a major advance for an allergy that afflicts 1.8 million people in the United States. Millions of people have food allergies and peanut allergy is considered the most dangerous, with life-threatening reactions possible from trace amounts. It accounts for most of the 30,000 emergency-room visits and up to 200 deaths attributed to food allergies each year. Although some children outgrow peanut allergy, that’s rare among the severely affected. There’s no way to avoid a reaction other than avoiding peanuts.

Note: For many hopeful reports on health issues from major media sources, click here.


U.S. to pull 12,000 troops from Iraq as withdrawal begins
2009-03-09, Los Angeles Times
http://www.latimes.com/news/nationworld/world/la-fg-iraq-troops-violence9-200...

The U.S. will reduce its military presence in Iraq by 12,000 troops over the next six months as part of the first major drawdown since President Obama announced his plan to end combat operations in the country next year, U.S. military officials in Baghdad [announced]. The drawdown reflects ... a major shift in priorities for the U.S. military, which is increasingly focused on efforts to arrest the deteriorating situation in Afghanistan. The plan would reduce U.S. troop strength by nearly 10%. The plan calls for the number of U.S. brigade combat teams to drop from 14 to 12. Two brigade teams that had been scheduled to redeploy in the next six months will not be replaced. When the American move is completed, it would reduce the U.S. military presence in Iraq to about 128,000 troops. The Iraq withdrawals are crucial to the administration's plans to devote more military resources to Afghanistan. Senior U.S. national security officials are nearing completion of a strategic review of the U.S. mission in Afghanistan, a step that Obama has described as an effort "to stabilize a deteriorating situation." Seven years after the U.S. invasion, Afghanistan's stability is threatened by a renewed Taliban insurgency. Last month, Obama announced plans to send 17,000 additional U.S. soldiers and Marines to Afghanistan -- deployments that would more than offset the troop reductions in Iraq.

Note: So President Obama withdraws 12,000 troops from Iraq, yet sends 17,000 troops to Afghanistan. What kind of withdrawl is this? Could it be that even Obama supports the war machine? To find out more, click here.


Hidden Pension Fiasco May Foment Another $1 Trillion Bailout
2009-03-03, Bloomberg News
http://www.bloomberg.com/apps/news?pid=newsarchive&sid=alwTE0Z5.1EA

Public pension funds across the U.S. are hiding the size of a crisis that’s been looming for years. Retirement plans play accounting games with numbers, giving the illusion that the funds are healthy. The paper alchemy gives governors and legislators the easy choice to contribute too little or nothing to the funds, year after year. The misleading numbers posted by retirement fund administrators help mask this reality: Public pensions in the U.S. had total liabilities of $2.9 trillion as of Dec. 16, according to the Center for Retirement Research at Boston College. Their total assets are about 30 percent less than that, at $2 trillion. With stock market losses this year, public pensions in the U.S. are now underfunded by more than $1 trillion. That lack of funds explains why dozens of retirement plans in the U.S. have issued more than $50 billion in pension obligation bonds during the past 25 years -- more than half of them since 1997 -- public records show. The quick fix for pension funds becomes a future albatross for taxpayers. The public gets nothing from pension bonds -- other than a chance to at least temporarily avoid paying for higher pension fund contributions. Pension bonds portend the possibility of steep tax increases. By law, states must guarantee public pension fund debts. “What appears to be a riskless strategy is actually very risky,” says David Zion, director of accounting research for New York-based Credit Suisse Holdings USA Inc. “If the returns on the pension bond-financed assets don’t exceed the cost of servicing the debt, the taxpayers bear the brunt.”

Note: The risks to pension funds may require yet another huge public bailout. Where will the money come from? For lots more on the realities of the Wall Street bailout, click here.


Oil producers running out of storage space
2009-03-03, MSNBC/Associated Press
http://www.msnbc.msn.com/id/29495753

Supertankers that once raced around the world to satisfy an unquenchable thirst for oil are now parked offshore, fully loaded, anchors down, their crews killing time. In the United States, vast storage farms for oil are almost out of room. As demand for crude has plummeted, the world suddenly finds itself awash in oil that has nowhere to go. It’s been less than a year since oil prices hit record highs. But now producers and traders are struggling with the new reality: The world wants less oil, not more. And turning off the spigot is about as easy as turning around one of those tankers. So oil companies and investors are stashing crude, waiting for demand to rise and the bear market to end so they can turn a profit later. Meanwhile, oil-producing countries such as Iran have pumped millions of barrels of their own crude into idle tankers, effectively taking crude off the market to halt declining prices that are devastating their economies. Traders have always played a game of store and sell, bringing oil to market when it can fetch the best price. They say this time is different because of how fast the bottom fell out of the oil market. “Nobody expected this,” said Antoine Halff, an analyst with Newedge. “The majority of people out there thought the market would keep rising to $200, even $250, a barrel. They were tripping over each other to pick a higher forecast.” Now the strategy is storage. Anyone who can buy cheap oil and store it might be able to sell it at a premium later, when the global economy ramps up again.


Secret Bush Anti-Terror Memos Revealed
2009-03-02, CBS News/Associated Press
http://www.cbsnews.com/stories/2009/03/02/national/main4839662.shtml

The Obama administration threw open the curtain on years of Bush-era secrets Monday, revealing anti-terror memos that claimed exceptional search-and-seizure powers and divulging that the CIA destroyed nearly 100 videotapes of interrogations and other treatment of terror suspects. The Justice Department released nine legal opinions showing that, following the Sept. 11, 2001, terrorist attacks, the Bush administration determined that certain constitutional rights would not apply during the coming fight. Within two weeks, government lawyers were already discussing ways to wiretap U.S. conversations without warrants. An October 2001 memo by the Justice Department's John Yoo authorized the use of the U.S. military within the United States in combating terrorists. Yoo defined the 9/11 attacks as "war" and therefore concluded the President could employ the military domestically in a "military action" rather than a police action. Under Posse Comitatus Act, the American armed forces are forbidden from operating domestically. A March 2003 memo gave the President broad powers to transfer captured al Qaeda and Taliban prisoners to third countries. It also stipulated that the torture provisions of the Geneva Convention did not apply, because these prisoners were "non state" enemy combatants and therefore not entitled to Geneva protections. The Obama administration also acknowledged in court documents Monday that the CIA destroyed 92 videos involving terror suspects, including interrogations - far more than had been known.

Note: For key reports from major media sources on the hidden realities of the war on terror, click here.


Google Ocean: Has Atlantis been found off Africa?
2009-02-20, The Telegraph (One of the UK's leading newspapers)
http://www.telegraph.co.uk/technology/google/4731313/Google-Ocean-Has-Atlanti...

A "grid of streets" on the seabed at one of the proposed locations of the lost city of Atlantis has been spotted on Google Ocean. Google Ocean, an extension of Google Earth, allows web users to virtually explore the ocean with thousands of images of underwater landscapes. The network of criss-cross lines is 620 miles off the coast of north west Africa near the Canary Islands on the floor of the Atlantic Ocean. The perfect rectangle – which is around the size of Wales – was noticed on the search giant's underwater exploration tool by an aeronautical engineer who claims it looks like an "aerial map" of a city. The underwater image can be found at the co-ordinates 31 15'15.53N 24 15'30.53W. Atlantis experts said that the unexplained grid is located at one of the possible sites of the legendary island, which was described by the ancient Greek philosopher Plato. According to his account, the city sank beneath the ocean after its residents made a failed effort to conquer Athens around 9000 BC. Dr Charles Orser, curator of historical archaeology at New York State University told The Sun that the find was fascinating and warranted further inspection. The legend of Atlantis has excited the public imagination for centuries. In recent years "evidence" of the lost kingdom has been found off the coast of Cyprus and in southern Spain.

Note: Many archeological finds which don't match accepted history have been suppressed and covered up. For five revealing BBC articles showing more manipulation around this, click here.



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