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Media Articles
Excerpts of Key Media Articles in Major Media


Below are key excerpts of highly revealing media articles from the major media. Links are provided to the full articles on their media websites. If any link fails to function, read this webpage. These media articles are listed in reverse date order. You can also explore the articles listed by order of importance or by 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 key excerpts of revealing major media news articles on several dozen engaging topics. And don't miss amazing excerpts from 20 of the most revealing news articles ever published.


The Austerity Agenda
2012-06-01, New York Times
http://www.nytimes.com/2012/06/01/opinion/krugman-the-austerity-agenda.html

Slashing spending while the economy is deeply depressed is a self-defeating strategy, because it just deepens the depression. So why is Britain doing exactly what it shouldn’t? Unlike the governments of, say, Spain or California, the British government can borrow freely, at historically low interest rates. So why is that government sharply reducing investment and eliminating hundreds of thousands of public-sector jobs, rather than waiting until the economy is stronger? The great American economist Irving Fisher explained it all the way back in 1933, summarizing what he called “debt deflation” with the pithy slogan “the more the debtors pay, the more they owe.” Recent events, above all the austerity death spiral in Europe, have dramatically illustrated the truth of Fisher’s insight. So why have so many politicians insisted on pursuing austerity in [the] slump? And why won’t they change course even as experience confirms the lessons of theory and history? When you push “austerians” ... they almost always retreat to assertions along the lines of: “But it’s essential that we shrink the size of the state.” These assertions often go along with claims that the economic crisis itself demonstrates the need to shrink government. So the austerity drive in Britain isn’t really about debt and deficits at all; it’s about using deficit panic as an excuse to dismantle social programs. And this is, of course, exactly the same thing that has been happening in America.

Note: For lots more on the devastating impacts created by the corruption of governments and financial corporations, click here.


Japan’s plutonium glut: Plan to make more raises red flag as country reassesses nuclear future
2012-06-01, Washington Post
http://www.washingtonpost.com/world/asia_pacific/japans-plutonium-glut-plan-t...

Last year’s tsunami disaster in Japan clouded the nation’s nuclear future, idled its reactors and rendered its huge stockpile of plutonium useless for now. So, the industry’s plan to produce even more has raised a red flag. Nuclear industry officials say they hope to start producing a half-ton of plutonium within months, in addition to the more than 35 tons Japan already has stored around the world. That’s even though all the reactors that might use it are either inoperable or offline while the country rethinks its nuclear policy after the tsunami-generated Fukushima crisis. “It’s crazy,” said Princeton University professor Frank von Hippel, a leading authority on nonproliferation issues and a former assistant director for national security in the White House Office of Science and Technology. “There is absolutely no reason to do that.” Japan’s nuclear industry produces plutonium — which is strictly regulated globally because it also is used for nuclear weapons — by reprocessing spent, uranium-based fuel in a procedure aimed at decreasing radioactive waste that otherwise would require long-term storage. Fuel reprocessing remains unreliable and it is questionable whether it is a viable way of reducing Japan’s massive amounts of spent fuel rods, said Takeo Kikkawa, a Hitotsubashi University professor specializing in energy issues. “Japan should abandon the program altogether,” said Hideyuki Ban, co-director of a respected anti-nuclear Citizens’ Nuclear Information Center. “Then we can also contribute to the global effort for nuclear non-proliferation.”

Note: For a state-of-the-art analysis revealing that radioactive fallout from the Fukushima meltdown is at least as big as Chernobyl and more global in reach, click here.


The crime of punishment at Pelican Bay State Prison
2012-05-31, San Francisco Chronicle (San Francisco's leading newspaper)
http://www.sfgate.com/cgi-bin/article.cgi?f=/c/a/2012/05/30/EDO81OPJ9O.DTL

For the past 16 years, I have spent at least 22 1/2 hours of every day completely isolated within a tiny, windowless cell in the Security Housing Unit at California's Pelican Bay State Prison in Crescent City. Eighteen years ago, I committed the crime that brought me here: burgling an unoccupied dwelling. Under the state's "three strikes" law, I was sentenced to between 25 years and life in prison. The circumstances of my case are not unique; in fact, about a third of Pelican Bay's 3,400 prisoners are in solitary confinement; more than 500 have been there for 10 years, including 78 who have been here for more than 20 years. Unless you have lived it, you cannot imagine what it feels like to be by yourself, between four cold walls, with little concept of time, no one to confide in, and only a pillow for comfort - for years on end. It is a living tomb. I eat alone and exercise alone in a small, dank, cement enclosure known as the "dog-pen."I have not been allowed physical contact with any of my loved ones since 1995. I have developed severe insomnia, I suffer frequent headaches, and I feel helpless and hopeless. In short, I am being psychologically tortured. Now fellow SHU inmates and I have joined together with the Center for Constitutional Rights in a federal lawsuit that challenges this treatment as unconstitutional. I understand I broke the law, and I have lost liberties because of that. But no one, no matter what they've done, should be denied fundamental human rights, especially when that denial comes in the form of such torture. Our Constitution protects everyone living under it; fundamental rights must not be left at the prison door.

Note: For more on the unbridled cruelty and corruption of the prison-industrial complex, click here.


Chevron-Ecuador Fight Comes to Canada
2012-05-31, Bloomberg/Businessweek
http://www.businessweek.com/articles/2012-05-31/chevron-ecuador-fight-comes-t...

A peripatetic, two-decade-old pollution lawsuit against Chevron has bounced from New York to Ecuador, back to New York, and now on to the Superior Court of Justice in Toronto, Canada. There is no end in sight for the highly mobile litigation. The case began in federal court in New York in 1993, when lawyers representing residents of the rainforest in eastern Ecuador filed suit against Texaco, blaming the multinational oil company for contamination of the Amazon beginning in the late 1960s. Texaco fought for nine years to get the case dismissed based on the argument that it ought to have been brought in Ecuador. In 2001, near the end of Texaco’s ultimately successful campaign to avoid a U.S. legal battle, Chevron acquired Texaco. Having promised the U.S. judiciary it would abide by the dictates of the Ecuadorian courts, Chevron discovered itself on a slippery slope toward legal disaster. In February 2011, a trial judge in Lago Agrio [Ecuador] entered an $18 billion verdict against Chevron, the largest environmental judgment ever. Chevron had declared that the Ecuadorian judicial proceedings were shot through with fraud and that it would not pay a dime to the plaintiffs or their team of American and Ecuadorian lawyers. Now the plaintiffs have launched a fresh suit in Toronto, asking a Canadian judge to enforce the Ecuadorian verdict against Chevron in Canada, where the company has a subsidiary and ample assets.

Note: For lots more from reliable sources on corporate corruption, click here.


Transatlantic alliance between Rothschilds and Rockefellers for wealth management
2012-05-31, The Independent (One of the UK's leading newspapers)
http://www.independent.co.uk/news/business/news/transatlantic-alliance-betwee...

As if they weren't already well-connected enough, the world's two greatest dynasties joined forces yesterday as Europe's Rothschild banking clan bought a stake in the Rockefeller group's wealth and asset management business to gain a foothold in the US. The patriarchs of the two families – 96-year-old David Rockefeller and Jacob Rothschild, 76 – cemented a five-decade acquaintance as the younger man's London-based Ł2bn RIT Capital investment trust bought a 37 per cent stake in the American's business. In addition to bringing together the two doyens, the deal will considerably expand the vast networks of both families. To give a taste: Lord Rothschild's son, Nat Rothschild, is a well-known entrepreneur with stakes in a range of companies such as Genel, the Kurdistan-focused oil producer ... and Bumi, the Indonesian mining group. He was also linked with George Osborne and Peter Mandelson at a notorious party on an oligarch's yacht off Corfu in 2008. Lord Rothschild's niece Kate is married to Ben Goldsmith, brother of Conservative MP Zac Goldsmith and Jemima Khan and son of the late billionaire business tycoon Sir James Goldsmith. On the Rockefeller side, for starters, David's granddaughter Ariana is a successful fashion designer who married the construction heir Matthew Bucklin in 2010. The Rothschilds bought the stake in Rockefeller from French banking group Société Générale for an undisclosed sum.


Rothschild and Rockefeller families team up for some extra wealth creation
2012-05-30, The Telegraph (One of the UK's leading newspapers)
http://www.telegraph.co.uk/finance/newsbysector/banksandfinance/9300784/Roths...

The Rothschild and Rockefeller families have teamed up to buy assets from banks and other distressed sellers in a union between two of the best-known names in financial history. RIT Capital Partners, which is chaired by Lord Rothschild, has taken a 37pc stake in Rockefeller Financial Services, the family’s wealth advisory and asset management wing. It has snapped up the holding from French bank Société Générale for less than Ł100m. The transatlantic alliance cements a five-decade acquaintance between the now ennobled Jacob Rothschild, 76, and David Rockefeller, 96, the grandson of the ruthlessly acquisitive American oilman and philanthropist John D Rockefeller. The two patricians now plan to capitalise on their family names to buy other asset managers or their portfolios, using their networks of top-notch contacts to ensure they get a seat at the table for any deal. The Rockefeller group goes back to 1882, set up to invest the family money made by John D Rockefeller’s Standard Oil, the forerunner for today’s Exxon Corporation, which he built with a Darwinian aggression. “Do you know the only thing that gives me pleasure? It’s to see my dividends coming in,” he once said. The Rothschild banking dynasty has its roots in the 18th century when Mayer Amschel Rothschild set up a business in Frankfurt. That sprang to fame in 1815 when it bought government bonds in anticipation of Napoleon’s defeat at Waterloo.

Note: Why is that these two hugely wealthy families get so little press coverage? Could it be that their wealth and influence exerts control over the major media? For more on secret societies which command huge hidden power, see the deeply revealing reports from reliable major media sources available here.


Q & A With Bulger Biographer
2012-05-30, WBUR-FM (Boston's NPR news station)
http://www.wbur.org/2012/05/30/dick-lehr

Dick Lehr is the co-author of the book Black Mass: Whitey Bulger, the FBI, and a Devil’s Deal. First published in 2001, the book has undergone a number of revisions as the story of Bulger and the FBI has unfolded. Its latest revision has been published this month. Lehr and his co-author Gerry O’Neill are former reporters for the Boston Globe, whose ... report in September 1988 on the tale of the two Bulger brothers first raised the issue in public of Bulger’s “special relationship” to the FBI. Dick Lehr: [Whitey Bulger] goes down into history as one of the 20th century’s most notorious gangsters. He did something no other gangster that we know of has ever done and that’s compromise the FBI, bring it to its knees, not just in a single case, but as a way of life. He had sold everybody a story that would explain why someone might see him and [FBI agent John] Connolly. And that was that Connolly was their source, that it was one-way, and that Connolly was a corrupted agent, which was true, but it didn’t tell the whole story. But it did become Whitey’s cover. So if anybody ever saw him with Connolly and asked, ‘Hey what are you doing with that FBI guy?’ Whitey could say, ‘Hey, that’s my guy — he’s my rat.’ Throughout a lifetime he’s strategically always been able to anticipate and plant seeds in the event something happens down the road and he’s already a step ahead in terms of everyone, strategy and analysis.

Note: To go much deeper into this bizarre story of FBI strangeness, read the interview in the Boston Globe at this link. And for additional reliable information on intense corruption in intelligence agencies, click here.


Teen girl from Egypt has just reinvented space travel
2012-05-30, MSN
http://now.msn.com/now/0530-egyptian-physics-fuel.aspx

Egyptian Aisha Mustafa, 19, has dazzled the physics world with a new invention that could launch spacecraft off the Earth's surface and soaring through space without any fuel. Space is filled with a billowing sea of quantum particles that jump in and out of existence, and Aisha Mustafa proposes using thin silicon panels, spaced closely together, to trap these particles and then move against them, creating a propelling force. This innovation would make space exploration lighter, safer and cheaper. Mustafa still has some design work to do, but unfortunately her research is currently limited by lack of state funding for space science departments at the university level, though her school's science club did help fund her application for a patent.

Note: For more on this intriguing innovation, click here.


With Plan X, Pentagon seeks to spread U.S. military might to cyberspace
2012-05-30, Washington Post
http://www.washingtonpost.com/world/national-security/with-plan-x-pentagon-se...

The Pentagon is turning to the private sector, universities and even computer-game companies as part of an ambitious effort to develop technologies to improve its cyberwarfare capabilities, launch effective attacks and withstand the likely retaliation. The previously unreported effort, which its authors have dubbed Plan X, marks a new phase in the nation’s fledgling military operations in cyberspace. Plan X is a project of the Defense Advanced Research Projects Agency, a Pentagon division that focuses on experimental efforts and has a key role in harnessing computing power to help the military wage war more effectively. “If they can do it, it’s a really big deal,” said Herbert S. Lin, a cybersecurity expert with the National Research Council of the National Academies. “If they achieve it, they’re talking about being able to dominate the digital battlefield just like they do the traditional battlefield.” The five-year, $110 million research program will begin seeking proposals this summer. Among the goals will be the creation of an advanced map that details the entirety of cyberspace — a global domain that includes tens of billions of computers and other devices — and updates itself continuously. Such a map would help commanders identify targets and disable them using computer code delivered through the Internet or other means. Another goal is the creation of a robust operating system capable of launching attacks and surviving counterattacks.

Note: Isn't it ironic that the government continually seeks to restrict internet freedoms on the pretext of possible cyberattacks from abroad, while at the same time it carries out an aggressive cyberwar agenda of its own? For lots more reliable information on war manipulations, click here.


Secret ‘Kill List’ Proves a Test of Obama’s Principles and Will
2012-05-29, New York Times
http://www.nytimes.com/2012/05/29/world/obamas-leadership-in-war-on-al-qaeda....

Mr. Obama has placed himself at the helm of a top secret "nominations" process to designate terrorists for kill or capture, of which the capture part has become largely theoretical. Mr. Obama ... insisted on approving every new name on an expanding "kill list," poring over terrorist suspects' biographies. When a rare opportunity for a drone strike at a top terrorist arises -- but his family is with him -- it is the president who has reserved to himself the final moral calculation. In interviews with The New York Times, three dozen of his current and former advisers described Mr. Obama's evolution since taking on the role, without precedent in presidential history, of personally overseeing the shadow war. They describe a paradoxical leader who shunned the legislative deal-making required to close the detention facility at Guantánamo Bay in Cuba, but approves lethal action without hand-wringing. When he applies his lawyering skills to counterterrorism, it is usually to enable, not constrain, his ferocious campaign ... even when it comes to killing an American cleric in Yemen, a decision that Mr. Obama told colleagues was "an easy one." Beside the president at every step is his counterterrorism adviser, John O. Brennan, who is variously compared by colleagues to a dogged police detective, tracking terrorists from his cavelike office in the White House basement, or a priest whose blessing has become indispensable to Mr. Obama, echoing the president's attempt to apply the "just war" theories of Christian philosophers to a brutal modern conflict.

Note: For further analysis of Obama’s role in the selection of drone missile targets, click here.


America's murderous drone campaign is fuelling terror
2012-05-29, The Guardian (One of the UK's leading newspapers)
http://www.guardian.co.uk/commentisfree/2012/may/29/americas-drone-campaign-t...

From Pakistan to Somalia, CIA-controlled pilotless aircraft rain down Hellfire missiles on an ever-expanding hit list of terrorist suspects – they have already killed hundreds, perhaps thousands, of civilians in the process. At least 15 drone strikes have been launched in Yemen this month, as many as in the whole of the past decade, killing dozens; while in Pakistan, a string of US attacks has been launched against supposed "militant" targets in the past week, incinerating up to 35 people and hitting a mosque and a bakery. But then Predators and Reapers are Barack Obama's weapons of choice and coercion, deployed only on the territory of troublesome US allies, such as Pakistan and Yemen – and the drone war is Obama's war. In his first two years in office, the US president more than tripled the number of attacks in Pakistan alone. Since 2004, between 2,464 and 3,145 people are reported to have been killed by US drone attacks in Pakistan, of whom up to 828 were civilians (535 under Obama) and 175 children. Some Pakistani estimates put the civilian death toll much higher – plausibly, given the tendency to claim as "militants" victims later demonstrated to be nothing of the sort. The US president insisted recently that the civilian death toll was not a "huge number". These killings are, in reality, summary executions and widely regarded as potential war crimes by international lawyers. The CIA's now retired counsel, John Rizzo, who authorised drone attacks, himself talked about having been involved in "murder".

Note: For a deep analysis of how killer drone technology and the concept of ‘remote war’ have altered the balance of options available to our political and military leaders and made the political cost of military intervention much lower than it had previously been, click here.


Christine Lagarde, scourge of tax evaders, pays no tax
2012-05-29, The Guardian (One of the UK's leading newspapers)
http://www.guardian.co.uk/business/2012/may/29/christine-lagarde-pays-no-tax

Christine Lagarde, the IMF boss who caused international outrage after she suggested ... that beleaguered Greeks might do well to pay their taxes, pays no taxes, it has emerged. As an official of an international institution, her salary of $467,940 (Ł298,675) a year plus $83,760 additional allowance a year is not subject to any taxes. Lagarde, 56, receives a pay and benefits package worth more than American president Barack Obama earns from the United States government, and he pays taxes on it. According to Lagarde's contract she is also entitled to a pay rise on 1 July every year during her five-year contract. For many years critics have complained that IMF, World Bank, and United Nations employees are able to live large at international taxpayers' expense. During the 1944 economic conference at Bretton Woods, where the IMF was created, American and British politicians disagreed over salaries for the bureaucrats. British delegates, including the economist John Maynard Keynes, considered the American proposals for salaries to be "monstrous", but lost the argument.

Note: For key reports from major media sources on government corruption, click here.


Bradley Manning, America's martyr for open government
2012-05-29, The Guardian (One of the UK's leading newspapers)
http://www.guardian.co.uk/commentisfree/2012/may/29/bradley-manning-americas-...

Today marks two years of imprisonment of Private Bradley Manning. The US government was going to use Manning as a warning to anyone else who might feel compelled to report on war crimes, or any other crimes they witness from within the system. Blow the whistle, goes the warning, and you will be buried alive by the state, shredded by the same secrecy machine a whistleblower would try to expose. Because of courage and creativity of activists, Bradley Manning has not been forgotten, even if that was the aim of authorities, and he never shall be forgotten. His case has been largely shunned by most of the mainstream media, especially in the US. This needs to change, because if he is indeed found guilty of being a whistleblower of such magnitude that it shook the entire secrecy machine of our world out of its comfort zone, his acts would need to be honored as an inspiration to change the way governments hide the reality of their actions from the people they are supposed to be serving and informing. Manning should not be convicted in secret: the media should be given access to the court filings; and the media should be pushing harder for the first amendment of the US constitution to be honored in the Manning case.

Note: For key reports on government secrecy from reliable sources, click here.


Solar power generation world record set in Germany
2012-05-28, The Guardian (One of the UK's leading newspapers)
http://www.guardian.co.uk/environment/2012/may/28/solar-power-world-record-ge...

German solar power plants produced a world record 22 gigawatts of electricity – equal to 20 nuclear power stations at full capacity – through the midday hours of Friday and Saturday. Norbert Allnoch, director of the Institute of the Renewable Energy Industry in Muenster, said the 22 gigawatts of solar power fed into the national grid on Saturday met nearly 50% of the nation's midday electricity needs. "Never before anywhere has a country produced as much photovoltaic electricity," Allnoch [said]. The record-breaking amount of solar power shows one of the world's leading industrial nations was able to meet a third of its electricity needs on a work day, Friday, and nearly half on Saturday when factories and offices were closed. Government-mandated support for renewables has helped Germany became a world leader in renewable energy and the country gets about 20 percent of its overall annual electricity from those sources. Germany has nearly as much installed solar power generation capacity as the rest of the world combined and gets about four percent of its overall annual electricity needs from the sun alone. It aims to cut its greenhouse gas emissions by 40% from 1990 levels by 2020. "This shows Germany is capable of meeting a large share of its electricity needs with solar power," Allnoch said. "It also shows Germany can do with fewer coal-burning power plants, gas-burning plants and nuclear plants."

Note: For lots more from reliable sources on developments in alternative energy technologies, click here.


Spent Fuel Rods Drive Growing Fear Over Plant in Japan
2012-05-27, New York Times
http://www.nytimes.com/2012/05/27/world/asia/concerns-grow-about-spent-fuel-r...

Fourteen months after the accident [at the Fukushima Daiichi nuclear plant], a pool brimming with used fuel rods and filled with vast quantities of radioactive cesium still sits on the top floor of a heavily damaged reactor building, covered only with plastic. The public’s fears about the pool have grown in recent months as some scientists have warned that it has the most potential for setting off a new catastrophe ... as frequent quakes continue to rattle the region. The jury-rigged cooling system for the pool has already malfunctioned several times, including a 24-hour failure in April. Had the outages continued, they would have left the rods at risk of dangerous overheating. “The No. 4 reactor is visibly damaged and in a fragile state, down to the floor that holds the spent fuel pool,” said Hiroaki Koide, an assistant professor at Kyoto University’s Research Reactor Institute and one of the experts raising concerns. “Any radioactive release could be huge and go directly into the environment.” The worst-case situations for Reactor No. 4 would be for the pool to run dry if there is another problem with the cooling system and the rods catch fire, releasing enormous amounts of radioactive material, or for fission to restart if the metal panels that separate the rods are knocked over in a quake. That would be especially bad because the pool, unlike reactors, lacks containment vessels to hold in radioactive materials.

Note: For extensive coverage from reliable sources on corruption in the nuclear power industry, click here.


Plantations, Prisons and Profits
2012-05-26, New York Times
http://www.nytimes.com/2012/05/26/opinion/blow-plantations-prisons-and-profit...

“Louisiana is the world’s prison capital. The state imprisons more of its people, per head, than any of its U.S. counterparts. First among Americans means first in the world. Louisiana’s incarceration rate is nearly triple Iran’s, seven times China’s and 10 times Germany’s.” That paragraph opens a devastating eight-part series published this month by The Times-Picayune of New Orleans about how the state’s largely private prison system profits from high incarceration rates and tough sentencing, and how many with the power to curtail the system actually have a financial incentive to perpetuate it. The picture that emerges is one of convicts as chattel and a legal system essentially based on human commodification. • One in 86 Louisiana adults is in the prison system, which is nearly double the national average. • More than 50 percent of Louisiana’s inmates are in local prisons, which is more than any other state. The national average is 5 percent. • Louisiana leads the nation in the percentage of its prisoners serving life without parole. • Nearly two-thirds of Louisiana’s prisoners are nonviolent offenders. The national average is less than half. In the early 1990s, the state was under a federal court order to reduce overcrowding, but instead of releasing prisoners or loosening sentencing guidelines, the state incentivized the building of private prisons. But, in what the newspaper called “a uniquely Louisiana twist,” most of the prison entrepreneurs were actually rural sheriffs. They saw a way to make a profit and did.

Note: To read the powerful 8-part investigation of the Louisiana prison system from the New Orleans Times-Picayune, click here. For more on the cruelty and corruption of the prison-industrial complex, click here.


Montreal's student protesters defy restrictions as demonstrations grow
2012-05-25, The Guardian (One of the UK's leading newspapers)
http://www.guardian.co.uk/world/2012/may/25/montrea-student-protesters-defy-r...

Demonstrators in Montreal have continued to defy an emergency law passed by the provincial government in Quebec to restrict protests by students against planned tuition fee hikes. On Wednesday, more than 500 Montrealers were arrested – more than during the entire October 1970 crisis when martial law was declared in the city in response to actions by Quebec nationalists. The total number of those arrested in the current protests has now exceeded 2,500. The protest ... was declared illegal before it began, because organizers had not provided police with an itinerary, as required by a controversial new emergency law. Helicopters and riot police are an increasingly common sight on the streets of Montreal as a province-wide student strike passed the 100-day mark, but popular support only seems to be growing as the government attempts to clamp down on the strike. Small red squares, the symbol of the strike historically worn by Montreal students supporting free tuition, are everywhere in the city – cloth pinned to people's lapels and daubed onto signs and walls. Families and older residents are increasingly common sights at protests as well, demonstrating against Bill 78, which places restrictions on protests of more than 50 people. The bill imposes fines of $125,000 a day on student unions that defy its provisions, and student leaders shown to support unplanned protests can be fined up to a maximum of $5,000.

Note: For lots more on this important, yet underreported news, do a search on "Montreal protests."


Who Is The Smallest Government Spender Since Eisenhower? Would You Believe It's Barack Obama?
2012-05-24, Forbes
http://www.forbes.com/sites/rickungar/2012/05/24/who-is-the-smallest-governme...

Amidst all the cries of Barack Obama being the most prolific big government spender the nation has ever suffered, Marketwatch is reporting that our president has actually been tighter with a buck than any United States president since Dwight D. Eisenhower. So, how have the Republicans managed to persuade Americans to buy into the whole “Obama as big spender” narrative? It might have something to do with the first year of the Obama presidency where the federal budget increased a whopping 17.9% —going from $2.98 trillion to $3.52 trillion. I’ll bet you think that this is the result of the Obama sponsored stimulus plan that is so frequently vilified by the conservatives…but you would be wrong. The first year of any incoming president term is saddled—for better or for worse—with the budget set by the president whom immediately precedes the new occupant of the White House.. So, how do the actual Obama annual budgets look? In fiscal 2010 (the first Obama budget) spending fell 1.8% to $3.46 trillion. In fiscal 2011, spending rose 4.3% to $3.60 trillion. In fiscal 2012, spending is set to rise 0.7% to $3.63 trillion, according to the Congressional Budget Office’s estimate of the budget that was agreed to last August. Finally in fiscal 2013 — the final budget of Obama’s term — spending is scheduled to fall 1.3% to $3.58 trillion.

Note: The chart included with this article comparing amount spent by recent president's is quite revealing.


National debt: Will the U.S. be like Japan?
2012-05-24, CNN
http://money.cnn.com/2012/05/24/news/economy/national-debt-us-japan/index.htm

Political gridlock. High national debt. Rock-bottom bond rates. An aging population. Warnings about more downgrades. Sound like the United States? Indeed. But those characteristics also describe Japan -- the country that fiscal experts often point to as a cautionary tale about the risk of carrying too much national debt for too long. Ever since a stock market crash and banking crisis more than 20 years ago, Japan has suffered from anemic growth for much of that time and its debt has soared. The country's debt is projected to be 239% of the size of its economy by the end of this year. U.S. gross debt, by contrast, is a little over 100% of GDP. On almost every economic and demographic measure, U.S. fiscal problems are still less urgent than the ones facing Japan today, said Nariman Behravesh, chief economist at IHS Global Insight. In his view, the biggest debt-related problem facing Americans today is gridlock in Washington. "We have a political crisis in the United States," he said. There are plenty of ideas for how Washington could curb the growth in debt without undermining the economy. For example, lawmakers could phase in tax increases and spending cuts over time. They could agree on a credible plan that puts off serious fiscal restraint until the economy is stronger. What's missing though is political cooperation. But, Behravesh said, "If we're careful, we can resolve this sensibly."

Note: For an alternative analysis by Paul Craig Roberts, click here. He notes that "Unlike Japan, whose national debt is the largest of all, Americans do not own their own public debt. Much of US debt is owned abroad, especially by China, Japan, and OPEC, the oil exporting countries. This places the US economy in foreign hands." Roberts is a former Assistant Secretary of the US Treasury, Associate Editor of the Wall Street Journal, columnist for Business Week, and professor of economics.


Legion of Christ leader knew priest fathered child
2012-05-23, San Francisco Chronicle/Associated Press
http://www.sfgate.com/cgi-bin/article.cgi?f=/c/a/2012/05/22/MNC71OLU9T.DTL

The Legion of Christ religious order, already discredited for concealing the crimes of its pedophile founder, suffered another blow to its credibility Tuesday after its superior admitted he knew in 2005 that his most prominent priest had fathered a child, yet allowed him to keep teaching and preaching about morality. The admission by the Rev. Alvaro Corcuera is likely to enrage members of the Legion and its lay branch who have endured years of apologies, hypocrisy and explanations for the crimes of the Catholic order's founder, the Rev. Marcial Maciel, who sexually abused his seminarians and fathered three children with two women. The Rev. Thomas Williams, the public face of the Legion in America, admitted last week that he had violated his vow of celibacy and fathered a child several years ago, going public with a statement after the Associated Press presented the Legion with the accusation. On Tuesday, Corcuera wrote a letter to all Legion members admitting that he had heard rumors of the child before he became superior in 2005 but took Williams' word that they were false. Williams is a well-known U.S. television personality, author and moral theologian. Corcuera said that after becoming superior in 2005, he confirmed Williams' paternity and asked him to withdraw from public ministry. Yet he did nothing to prevent him from teaching morality to seminarians or preaching about ethics on television, in his many speaking engagements or in his 14 books, including Knowing Right From Wrong: A Christian Guide to Conscience.

Note: For deeply revealing reports from reliable sources on sexual abuse scandals within elite institutions like churches and governments, click here. And for a shocking Discovery Channel documentary showing that sophisticated child abuse rings lead to the very highest levels of government, click here.


Important Note: Explore our full index to key excerpts of revealing major media news articles on several dozen engaging topics. And don't miss amazing excerpts from 20 of the most revealing news articles ever published.