Kucinich Leads 45 Members In Opposing National Defense Authorization Act

Dandelion Salad

by Dennis Kucinich

Congress Votes To Intensify Tensions Between The US & Iran

Washington, Jan 16 – Congressman Dennis Kucinich (D-OH), who led the charge in opposing the National Defense Authorization Act on the floor of the House of Representatives today, released the following statement after voting against more war:

“This is a foreign policy blunder that needs to be remedied quickly,” Kucinich said.

Kucinich – who read the 1,513 page document – went to the House floor, objected to the bill and called for a recorded vote. The act passed by a vote of 369-46.

Kucinich pointed out to his colleagues the language in Sec. 229 of the Act. It states, in part:

Congress finds that Iran maintains a nuclear program in continued defiance of the international community while developing ballistic missiles of increasing sophistication and range that pose a threat to the forward-deployed forces of the United States.

However, just last month, a National Intelligence Estimate (NIE) report affirmed that Iran does not have an active weapons program. The NIE report concluded that if Iran were to end the freeze of its weapons program, it would still be at least two years before they would have enough highly enriched uranium to produce a nuclear bomb and it would be “very unlikely” Iran could produce enough material by then.

“There is absolutely no intelligence to back up these erroneous claims made by the Administration. All they are doing is ratcheting up tensions between the United States and Iran. There is no threat to the international community from Iran right now, nor will there be in the near future,” Kucinich said.

“Congress has given an undeserved victory to President Bush’s campaign to launch a second war — this time against Iran — by codifying this erroneous, unsupported claim.

“We have to be very cautious about building out an entire part of our defense, planning for an attack from Iran when we haven’t even made an effort to use diplomacy,” Kucinich said on the House floor today.

“Yet we are actually defining and making a connection between a nuclear capability, which Iran clearly doesn’t have at this moment, and ballistic missiles. And by creating that linkage we are actually creating an architecture of fear. I don’t think that is a sensible way for the greatest nation in the world to be pursuing its policy.”

FAIR USE NOTICE: This blog may contain copyrighted material. Such material is made available for educational purposes, to advance understanding of human rights, democracy, scientific, moral, ethical, and social justice issues, etc. This constitutes a ‘fair use’ of any such copyrighted material as provided for in Title 17 U.S.C. section 107 of the US Copyright Law. In accordance with Title 17 U.S.C. Section 107, the material on this site is distributed without profit to those who have expressed a prior interest in receiving the included information for research and educational purposes. If you wish to use copyrighted material from this site for purposes of your own that go beyond ‘fair use’, you must obtain permission from the copyright owner.

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Ask Congress to Investigate Pentagon Video of Iranian “Threat”

Kucinich demands Bush stop beating drums of war on Iran (video + transcript)

Kucinich: Evidence Undercuts Bush’s Rhetoric On Iran

How The Pentagon Planted a False Hormuz Story by Gareth Porter

Is Bush preparing the world for another USS Liberty by Trevor Murphy?

Ask Congress to Investigate Pentagon Video of Iranian “Threat”

Dandelion Salad

Just Foreign Policy

You have probably seen or heard about the video recently released by the Pentagon: Iranian motorboats are sailing near U.S. warships while a voice threatens that the U.S. ships will soon explode. The U.S. media hyped now-discredited reports that a “battle at sea” nearly took place. Many of us feared that a military confrontation with Iran had nearly come to pass.

But now, the Pentagon has admitted that the audio in the video might not have come from the Iranian ships and might not have been directed against the U.S. warships. Administration officials are trying to spin this admission as not being a big deal. They are wrong. It is a huge deal.

In fact, there is much evidence that the radio transmission did not come from the boats shown in the Pentagon’s video. There is none of the background noise of motor, waves and wind that one would expect from a motorboat. This particular radio channel is notorious for being cluttered with users hurling insults, and it is not at all clear that the threatening voice in the Pentagon’s videotape is even Iranian.

Presumably, all the information that we have now about this incident was available to the Pentagon – if they were interested – when they released the tape.

Ask your Senators and Representative to investigate: Why the rush to escalate tensions and release this video without checking?

Learn More

Write to Congress

h/t: After Downing Street

FAIR USE NOTICE: This blog may contain copyrighted material. Such material is made available for educational purposes, to advance understanding of human rights, democracy, scientific, moral, ethical, and social justice issues, etc. This constitutes a ‘fair use’ of any such copyrighted material as provided for in Title 17 U.S.C. section 107 of the US Copyright Law. In accordance with Title 17 U.S.C. Section 107, the material on this site is distributed without profit to those who have expressed a prior interest in receiving the included information for research and educational purposes. If you wish to use copyrighted material from this site for purposes of your own that go beyond ‘fair use’, you must obtain permission from the copyright owner.

see

Is Bush preparing the world for another USS Liberty by Trevor Murphy?

How The Pentagon Planted a False Hormuz Story by Gareth Porter

Kucinich demands Bush stop beating drums of war on Iran (video)

Green Presidential Debate By Manila Ryce (vids)

Dandelion Salad

By Manila Ryce
The Largest Minority
January 16th, 2008

Rest assured that we will continue to hold Disney/ABC and General Electric/NBC accountable for their exclusion of Dennis Kucinich from the last two debates. So rather than give last night’s Democratic “debate” (perhaps “Democratic” ought to be in quotes too) any more coverage than it’s already gotten, I present to you a debate with serious candidates actually talking about real issues – the Green Presidential Debates.

If you want to know what the slight differences are in the rehashed Nixon healthcare plan being proposed by Clinton, Obama, and Edwards, you can find plenty of lengthy filler on YouTube. I’m sure you’ll also be able to hear the word “change” used as a marketing device to sell their conservative platforms, and even learn what their favorite colors are too. Over here on the genuine Left however, we have real discussions and aren’t apologetic about it. The 2008 Green Presidential candidates are Jared Ball, Kent Mesplay, Cynthia McKinney, Kat Swift, and Jesse Johnson. Cindy Sheehan and Ralph Nader are also featured. Hat tip to John Geraghty for the vids.

American hero Ralph Nader has not decided to run yet, so he is not a declared candidate for the Green Party Presidential nomination at this time. However, he was invited to speak since he’s a fucking rockstar and advocate for democracy.

mfeinsteintube

2008 Green Presidential candidates Jared Ball, Kent Mesplay, Cynthia McKinney, Kat Swift and Jesse Johnson, at the Green Party 2008 Presidential Debate, January 13th, 2008. Herbst Theatre, San Francisco. http://www.cagreens.org http://www.gp.org

Ralph Nader, who is not a declared candidate for the Green Party Presidential nomination at the time of this event, speaks at the Green Party 2008 Presidential Debate, January 13th, 2008. Herbst Theatre, San Francisco. http://www.cagreens.org http://www.gp.org

FAIR USE NOTICE: This blog may contain copyrighted material. Such material is made available for educational purposes, to advance understanding of human rights, democracy, scientific, moral, ethical, and social justice issues, etc. This constitutes a ‘fair use’ of any such copyrighted material as provided for in Title 17 U.S.C. section 107 of the US Copyright Law. In accordance with Title 17 U.S.C. Section 107, the material on this site is distributed without profit to those who have expressed a prior interest in receiving the included information for research and educational purposes. If you wish to use copyrighted material from this site for purposes of your own that go beyond ‘fair use’, you must obtain permission from the copyright owner.

Kucinich remains a man of the people By Joseph Bateman

Dandelion Salad

By Joseph Bateman
The Daily Utah Chronicle
1/17/08

With the Democratic field of candidates dwindling, one candidate remains who possesses the leadership, courage and vision to put America back on track. That candidate is Ohio Rep. Dennis Kucinich.

Being a champion of the people is a reputation that Kucinich earned during his 1970s tenure as the mayor of Cleveland and continues to follow him during his political career. Faced with enormous political pressure to sell the city’s publicly owned electric company to corporate bankers, Kucinich steadfastly refused as he had promised in his campaign pledge as mayor, not to sell. Furious, the corporate bankers reacted and forced the city’s debt to be paid in full and forced the city into default. For this Kucinich would earn a spot among the top-10 worst big-city mayors in history.

continued…

FAIR USE NOTICE: This blog may contain copyrighted material. Such material is made available for educational purposes, to advance understanding of human rights, democracy, scientific, moral, ethical, and social justice issues, etc. This constitutes a ‘fair use’ of any such copyrighted material as provided for in Title 17 U.S.C. section 107 of the US Copyright Law. In accordance with Title 17 U.S.C. Section 107, the material on this site is distributed without profit to those who have expressed a prior interest in receiving the included information for research and educational purposes. If you wish to use copyrighted material from this site for purposes of your own that go beyond ‘fair use’, you must obtain permission from the copyright owner.

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Randi Rhodes interviews Kucinich on NBC shutting him out

Kucinich demands Bush stop beating drums of war on Iran (video)

Kucinich-Dennis

Dennis Kucinich Can Win by Lo

On The Issues: Dennis Kucinich and Ron Paul by Lo

Dennis 4 President

New Hampshire Drama by Eric Margolis

Dandelion Salad

by Eric Margolis
January 14, 2008

PANAMA – Watching America’s quirky electoral process from abroad always has special piquancy. In many countries, including little Panama, whoever becomes president of the United States often has more influence over these nations than their own leaders.

I used to get lots of mail from American conservatives fretting the wicked Red Chinese had taken over the Panama Canal. That’s because a Hong Kong multinational bought the company that runs the Canal’s port operations.

Panama has been taken over, all right, not by Reds, but by American retirees fueling condo mania. I liked sinister Panama better under `old pineapple face,’ Gen. Manuel Noriega, with its cutthroats, crooks, gun runners, and evil women, a sunny place for shady people, to paraphrase Maugham. Today, it’s Republican golfers, and they were just delighted by John McCain’s victory in New Hampshire.

This column is less enthusiastic. Candidates who dared tell Americans the truth – Republican Ron Paul, Democrat Dennis Kucinich – were marginalized. Two capable, experienced senators, Joe Biden and Chris Dodd, were ignored by Iowa’s subsidy farmers and holy rollers. Smart, worldly Bill Richardson trailed badly.

Many Americans don’t want politicians who tell them hard truths. They prefer politicos offering blarney and roses, or who stoke mindless testosterone nationalism.

Senator John McCain appears an exception. New Hampshire voters, usually sober, serious lot, chose him for his resolute character, plain speaking, and experience. He has both gravitas and wit. The senator is a genuine war hero and courageous patriot in contrast to the Bush Administration’s other bloodthirsty, wartime draft-dodgers.

But McCain is further to the far right than Bush and Cheney and often sounds like a dangerous crank on foreign policy. He is an old-time imperialist who wants to wage jihad against the Muslim World and keep the Pentagon running foreign policy.

In the exciting Democratic race, Hillary Clinton’s last minute, carefully contrived tears on TV moved female voters to give her victory over Iowa winner, Barak Obama.

That’s a shame. Obama represents a new wave of more truthful, forthright politics America badly needs. The Clintons are vintage machine politicians with a tawdry record of sleazy financial and personal behavior. Hillary, who oozed in every direction on important issues, is as slippery as an Alabama mud fish. No politician who voted for the obscene Iraq War deserves re-election, starting with Hillary.

Then there is Rev. Mike Huckabee, anointed by the Evangelical Taliban far right. Like other Republicans, he has been urging more war abroad. Someone should remind Friar Huck that Christians are supposed to turn the other cheek, not wage oil crusades.

At least scary Rudy Giuliani has so far fared badly. But he is waiting for Florida’s Jewish and Cuban voters to supercharge his campaign. New York’s former mayor is surrounded by fanatical neoconservative foreign policy advisors from the ultras far right who urge `World War IV’ against the Muslim World. The last thing America’s battered foreign policy needs is more direction from the semi-fascist neocons who created its current disasters.

Mitt Romney, however robotic, and John Edwards merit respect for their fierce, tireless, though so far unsuccessful campaigns. Both are highly capable men, but they failed to excite voters. Boos to lazy Fred Thompson, as poor a campaigner as an actor.

The next bunch of primaries this and next month will determine the presidential race. America desperately needs strong, intelligent leadership. It faces recession at home and a disaster area abroad, thanks to the blundering stupidities of the Bush/Cheney White House and a gutless Congress. The Republican Party needs liberation from the southern fried know-nothings and holy rollers that have hijacked it.

Unfortunately, neither Hillary Clinton nor Obama have the experience the presidency demands. If Hillary wins the Democratic nomination, it’s likely the Republican candidate may defeat her. Most men can’t stand her, and there are enough sensible women who won’t support her just because she is female. Tears may only work once.

Meanwhile, `old pineapple face’ Noriega has served his full 17-year term in a Miami jail for cocaine trafficking. But the Bush Administration is trying to keep him silent by sending him to France to face further charges of money laundering. Washington fear’s Panama’s former dictator will reveal how he worked for CIA and trafficked drugs to support US-backed Contras in Nicaragua.

FAIR USE NOTICE: This blog may contain copyrighted material. Such material is made available for educational purposes, to advance understanding of human rights, democracy, scientific, moral, ethical, and social justice issues, etc. This constitutes a ‘fair use’ of any such copyrighted material as provided for in Title 17 U.S.C. section 107 of the US Copyright Law. In accordance with Title 17 U.S.C. Section 107, the material on this site is distributed without profit to those who have expressed a prior interest in receiving the included information for research and educational purposes. If you wish to use copyrighted material from this site for purposes of your own that go beyond ‘fair use’, you must obtain permission from the copyright owner.

Institutionalized Spying on Americans by Stephen Lendman

Dandelion Salad

by Stephen Lendman
Global Research, January 17, 2008

Homeland Security’s National Applications Office (NAO)

This article reviews two police state tools (among many in use) in America. One is new, undiscussed and largely unknown to the public. The other was covered in a December article by this writer called Police State America. Here it is updated with new information.

The National Applications Office (NAO)

The Department of Homeland Security (DHS) established a new domestic spying operation in 2007 called the National Applications Office (NOA) and described it as “the executive agent to facilitate the use of intelligence community technological assets for civil, homeland security and law enforcement purposes within the United States.” The office was to begin operating last fall to “build on the long-standing work of the Civil Applications Committee (CAC), which was created in 1974 to facilitate the use of the capabilities of the intelligence community for civil, non-defense uses in the United States.”

With or without congressional authorization or oversight, the executive branch is in charge and will let NAO use state-of-the-art technology, including military satellite imagery, to spy on Americans without their knowledge. Implementation is delayed, however, after Committee on Homeland Security Chairman, Bennie Thompson, and other committee members raised questions of “very serious privacy and civil liberties concerns.” In response, DHS agreed to delay operating (officially) until all matters are addressed and resolved.

Given its track record post-9/11, expect little more than pro forma posturing before Congress signs off on what Kate Martin, the director of the Center for National Security Studies, calls “Big Brother in the Sky” and a “police state” in the offing.

DHS supplies this background information on NAO. Post-9/11, the Director of National Intelligence appointed an Independent Study Group (ISG) in May, 2005 to “review the current operation and future role of the (1974) Civil Applications Committee and study the current state of Intelligence Community support to homeland security and law enforcement entities.”

In September 2005, the Committee produced a “Blue Ribbon Study,” now declassified. Its nine members were headed by and included three Booz Allen Hamilton officials because of the company’s expertise in spying and intelligence gathering. Its other members have similar experience. They all have a vested interest in domestic spying because the business potential is huge for defense related industries and consultants.

ISG members included:

Keith Hall, Chairman
Vice President, Booz Allen Hamilton

Edward G. Anderson
LTG US Army (Ret),
Principal, Booz Allen Hamilton

Thomas W. Conroy
Vice President
National Security Programs
Northrop Grumman/TASC

Patrick M. Hughes
LTG US Army (Ret)
Vice President, Homeland Security
L-3 Communications

Kevin O’Connell
Director of Defense Group Incorporated (DGI)
Center for Intelligence Research and Analysis (CIRA)

CIRA is a think tank that calls itself “the premier open source and cultural intelligence exploitation cell for the US intelligence community.” Its business is revolutionizing intelligence analysis.

Jeff Baxter
Independent Defense Consultant with DOD and industry ties

Dr. Paul Gilman
Director
Oak Ridge Center for Advanced Studies

Oak Ridge National Laboratory
US Department of Energy

Kemp Lear
Associate
Booz Allen Hamilton, and

Joseph D. Whitley, Esq
Alston & Bird LLP, Government Investigations and Compliance Group, former Acting Associate Attorney General in GHW Bush administration, and former General Counsel for DHS under GW Bush

The ISG’s report produced 11 significant findings and 27 recommendations based on its conclusion that there’s “an urgent need for action because opportunities to better protect the nation are being missed.” It “concluded a new management and process model (is) needed to effectively employ IC (Intelligence Community) capabilities for domestic uses.”

In March 2006, DHS unveiled the new agency to implement ISG’s recommendations called the National Applications Office. In May, 2007, Director of National Intelligence (DNI), Michael McConnell, named DHS as its executive agent and functional manager. At least in principle according to DHS, Congress agreed with this approach and to provide funding for it, beginning in the fall of 2007.

The public knew nothing about this until a feature August 15, 2007 Wall Street Journal story broke the news. It was headlined “US to Expand Use of Spy Satellites.” It noted that for the first time the nation’s top intelligence official (DNI’s McConnell) “greatly expanded the range of federal and local (civilian law enforcement agencies that) can get access to” military spy satellite collected information. Until now, civilian use was restricted to agencies like NASA and the US Geological Survey, and only for scientific and environmental study.

The Journal explained that key objectives under new guidelines will be:

— border security,

— securing critical infrastructure and helping emergency responders after natural disasters,

— working with criminal and civil federal, state, and local law enforcement agencies, and

— unmentioned by the Journal, the ability to spy on anyone, anywhere, anytime domestically for any reason – an unprecedented act using state-of-the-art technology enabling real-time, high-resolution images and data from space.

NAO will also oversee classified information from the National Security Agency (NSA), the National Geospatial-Intelligence Agency (NGA) and other US agencies involved in dealing with all aspects of national security, including “terrorism.”

NSA was established in 1952, is super-secret, and for many years was never revealed to exist. Today, its capabilities are awesome and worrisome. It eavesdrops globally, mines a vast amount of data, and does it through a network of spy satellites, listening posts, and surveillance planes to monitor virtually all electronic communications from landline and cell phones, telegrams, emails, faxes, radio and television, data bases of all kinds and the internet.

NGA is new and began operating in 2003. It lets military and intelligence analysts monitor virtually anything or anyone from state-of-the-art spy satellites. Both NSA and NGA coordinate jointly with the National Reconnaissance Office (NRO) that designs, builds and operates military spy satellites. It also analyzes military and CIA-collected aircraft and satellite reconnaissance information.

Combined with warrantless wiretapping, pervasive spying of all kinds, the abandonment of the law and checks and balances, intense secrecy, and an array of repressive post-9/11 legislation, Executive Orders and National Security and Homeland Security Presidential Directives, NAO is another national security police state tool any despot would love. It’s now established and may be operating without congressional approval.

Using spy satellites domestically “is largely uncharted territory,” as the Wall Street Journal noted. Even its architects admit there’s no clarity on this, and the ISG’s report stated “There is little if any policy, guidance or procedures regarding the collection, exploitation and dissemination of domestic MASINT (Measurement and Signatures Intelligence).”

The Defense Intelligence Agency (DIA) is the main DOD spy agency. It manages MASINT that’s ultra-secret and sophisticated. It uses state-of-the-art radar, lasers, infrared sensors, electromagnetic data and other technologies that can detect chemicals, electro-magnetic activity, whether a nuclear power plant produces plutonium, and the type vehicle from its exhaust. It can also see under bridges, through clouds, forest canopies and even concrete to create images and collect data. In addition, it can detect people, activity and weapons that satellites and photo-reconnaissance aircraft miss, so it’s an invaluable spy tool but highly intrusive and up to now only for military and foreign intelligence work.

Further, military spy satellites are state-of-the-art and superior to civilian ones. They record in color as well as black and white, use different parts of the light spectrum to track human activities and ground movements and can detect chemical weapons traces and people-generated heat in buildings.

This much we know about them. Their full potential is top secret and available only to the military and intelligence community. The Journal quoted an alarmed Gregory Nojeim, senior counsel and director of the Project on Freedom, Security and Technology, that advocates for digital age privacy rights saying: “Not only is the surveillance they are contemplating intrusive and omnipresent, it’s also invisible. And that’s what makes this so dangerous.”

Anyone for any reason may be watched at all times (through walls) with no way to know it, but a June 2001 (before 9/11) Supreme Court decision offers hope. In Kyllo v. United States, the Court ruled for petitioner 5 to 4 (with Scalia and Thomas in the majority). It voided a conviction based on police use of thermal imaging to detect heat in his triplex to determine if an illegal drug was being grown, in this case marijuana.

The Court held: “Where, as here, the Government uses a device that is not in general public use, to explore details of a private home that would previously have been unknowable without physical intrusion, the surveillance is a Fourth Amendment ‘search,” and is presumptively unreasonable without a warrant….To withdraw protection of this minimum expectation would be to permit police technology to erode the privacy guaranteed by the Fourth Amendment” protecting against “unreasonable searches and seizures.”

In 1981, Ronald Reagan seemed to agree in Executive Order 12333 on United States Intelligence Activities. It bars the intelligence community from most forms of home eavesdropping while providing wide latitude to all government agencies to “provide the President and the National Security Council with the necessary information (needed to) conduct….foreign, defense and economic policy (and protect US) national interests from foreign security threats. (Collecting this information is to be done, however,) consistent with the Constitution and applicable law….”

That was then, and this is now. It’s hard imagining congressional concern or DHS meaning that NAO will “prioritize the protection of privacy and civil liberties” and citing the Reagan Executive Order and the 1974 Privacy Act. That law mandates that no government agency “shall disclose any record (or) system of records by any means of communication to any person, or to another agency, except pursuant to a written request, or with the prior written consent of, the individual to whom the record pertains.” The Privacy act requires the US government to maintain an administrative and physical security system to prevent the unauthorized release of personal records.

Post-9/11, the Patriot Act ended that protection, so DHS is shameless saying NAO must comply with civil liberties and privacy laws and be subject to “oversight by the DHS Inspector General, Chief Privacy Officer, and the Officer for Civil Rights and Liberties” plus additional oversight. No longer post-9/11 when the national security state got repressive new tools to erode the constitution, ignore democratic principles, and give the President unrestricted powers in the name of national security. NAO is the latest one watching us as our “Big Brother in the Sky.” Orwell would be proud.

Real ID Act Update – Another Intrusive Police State Tool

The Read ID Act of 2005 required states to meet federal ID standards by May, 2008. That’s now changed because 29 states passed or introduced laws that refuse to comply. They call the Act costly to administer, a bureaucratic nightmare, and New Hampshire said it’s “repugnant” and violates the state and US Constitutions.

The federal law mandates that every US citizen and legal resident have a national ID card that in most cases is a driver’s license meeting federal standards. It requires it to contain an individual’s personal information and makes one mandatory to open a bank account, board an airplane, be able to vote, get a job, enter a federal building, or conduct virtually all essential business requiring identification.

States balked, and that doomed the original version. On January 11, changes were unveiled when the Department of Homeland Security (DHS) issued binding new rules. Under them, states have until 2011 to comply (instead of 2008), until 2014 to issue “tamper-proof licenses” to drivers born after 1964, and until 2017 for those born before this date. DHS said the original law would cost states $14 billion. The new regulations with an extended phase-in cuts the amount to around $3.9 billion or $8 per license.

These numbers may be bogus, however, the true costs may be far higher, and that’s why the Information Technology Association of America (ITAA) is lobbying for Real ID’s passage. Its members include high-tech card makers like Digimarc and Northrup Grumman and data brokers like Choicepoint and LexisNexis that profit by selling personal information to advertisers and the government.

Under new DHS rules, licenses must include a digital photo taken at the beginning of the application process and a filament or other security device to prevent counterfeiting. They must also have three layers of security that states can select from a DHS menu. In addition, states must begin checking license applicants’ Social Security and immigration status over the next year.

As of now, a controversial radio frequency identification (RFID) technology microchip isn’t required. It may come later, however, and here’s the problem. It’ll let cardholder movements and activities be tracked everywhere, at all times – in other words, a police state dream along with other pervasive spying tools.

Even worse would be mandating human RFID chip implants. It’s not planned so far (but not ruled out), and three states (California, Wisconsin and North Dakota) preemptively banned the practice without recipients’ consent.

Think it can’t happen? Consider a January 13 article in the London Independent headlined “Prisoners ‘to be chipped like dogs.’ ” The article states that civil rights groups and probation officers are furious that “hi-tech ‘satellite’…. machine-readable (microchip) tagging (is) planned (for thousands of offenders) to create more space in jails.” Unlike ankle bracelets now sometimes used, tiny RFID chips would be surgically implanted for monitoring the way they’re currently used for dogs, cats, cattle and luggage. They’re more reliable, it’s believed, as current devices can be tampered with or removed.

Ken Jones, president of the Association of Chief Police Officers (ACPO), was quoted saying: “We have looked at….the practicalities and the ethics (and we concluded) its time has come.” The UK currently has the largest prison population per capita in western Europe. It sounds like authorities plan to expand it using fewer cells. It also sounds like a scheme to tag everyone after testing them first on prisoners. And consider the possibilities. RFID technology is advancing, and one company plans deeper implants that can vibrate, emit electroshocks, broadcast a message to the implantee, and/or be a hidden microphone to transmit conversations. It’s not science fiction, and what’s planned for the UK will likely come to America. In fact, it’s already here.

In 2004, the FDA approved a grain-of-rice sized, antenna-containing VeriChip for human implantation that allows vital information to be read when a person’s body is scanned. The company states on its web site that it’s “the world’s first and only patented, FDA-cleared, human-implantable RFID microchip….with skin-sensing capabilities.” Reportedly, about 2000 test subjects now have them, but it may signal mandatory implantation ahead. Consider for whom for starters – prisoners, military personnel and possibly anyone seeking employment. After them, maybe everyone in a brave new global surveillance world.

It gets worse. Katherine Albrecht authored a report called “Microchip-Cancer Report – Microchip-Induced Tumors in Laboratory Rodents and Dogs: A Review of the Literature 1990-2006.” After reading it, Dr. Robert Benezra, Director Cancer Biology, Genetics Program, Memorial Sloan-Kettering Cancer Center said: “There’s no way in the world, having read this information, that I would have one of those chips implanted in my skin, or in one of my family members. Given the preliminary animal data, it looks to me that there’s definitely cause for concern.”

Albrecht’s report evaluated 11 previously published toxicology and pathology studies. In six of them, up to 10.2% of rats and mice developed malignant tumors (typically sarcomas) where microchips were implanted. Two others reported the same findings for dogs. These tumors spread fast and “often led to the death of the afflicted animals. In many cases, the tumors metastasized and spread to other parts of the animals. The implants were unequivocally identified as the cause of the cancers.”

Report reviews, conclusions and recommendations were to immediately stop further human implantations, inform people with them of the dangers, offer a microchip removal procedure, and reverse all animal microchipping mandates.

Debate Ahead on New DHS ID Rules

DHS Secretary Michael Chertoff said new ID rules require states to verify each cardholder’s personal information (including a person’s legal status in the country) by matching it against federal Social Security and passport databases and/or comparable state ones.

States have time to adjust, but Senate Judiciary Chairman Patrick Leahy wasted no time saying he’ll recommend legislation to ban Real ID drivers’ license provisions because “so many Americans oppose” them. They’re intrusive, burdensome, and federal databases are full of false or out-of-date information that’s hard to disprove, but unless it is Americans will be denied their legal right to a driver’s license.

The ACLU also strongly opposes Real ID because it violates privacy, lets government agencies share data, and its “tortured remains” represent an “utterly unworkable” system that will “irreparably damage the fabric of American life.” An ACLU January 11 press release further states that DHS “dumped the problems of the statute on future presidents like a rotting corpse left on (its) steps (and) whoever is president in 2018.” Congress must “recognize the situation and take action.” The Real ID Act and new DHS rules must be “repealed and replaced with a clean, simple, and vigorous new driver’s license security law that does not create a national ID” or violate Americans’ privacy.

Futuristic Hi-Tech Profiling

On January 14, Computerworld online revealed more cause for concern in an article called “Big Brother Really is Watching.” It’s about DHS “bankrolling futuristic profiling technology….” for its Project Hostile Intent. It, in turn, is part of a broader initiative called the Future Attribute Screening Technologies Mobile Module. It’s to be a self-contained, automated screening system that’s portable and easy to implement, and DHS hopes to test it at airports in 2010 and deploy it (if it works) by 2012 at airports, border checkpoints, other points of entry and other security-related areas.

Here’s the problem. If developed (reliable or not), these devices will use video, audio, laser and infrared sensors to feed real-time data into a computer using “specially developed algorithms” to identify “suspicious people.” It would work (in theory) by interpreting gestures, facial expressions and speech variations as well as measure body temperature, heart and respiration rate, blood pressure, skin moisture, and other physiological characteristics.

The idea would be detect deception and identify suspicious people for aggressive interrogation, searches and even arrest. But consider what’s coming. If developed, the technology may be used anywhere by government or the private sector for airport or other checkpoint security, buildings, job interviews, employee screening, buying insurance or conducting any other type essential business.

Aside from Fourth Amendment issues, here’s the problem according to Bruce Schneier, chief technology officer at security consultant BT Counterpane: “It’s a good idea fraught with difficulties….don’t hold your breath” it will work, and a better idea is to focus on detecting suspicious objects. Schneier further compares the technology to lie detectors that rely on “fake technology” and only work in films. They’re used because people want them although it’s acknowledged, even when well-administered, their median accuracy percentage is 50% at best.

This technology is worse, it may never be reliable, but may be deployed anyway in the age of “terror.” Something to consider next time we blink going through airport security, and ACLU Technology and Liberty Project director Barry Steinhardt states the concern: “We are not going to catch any terrorists (with it), but a lot of innocent people, especially racial and ethnic minorities, are going to be trapped in a web of suspicion.” Even so, DHS spent billions on this and other screening tools post-9/11. Expect lots more ahead, and here’s the bottom line:

As things now stand, Washington, post-9/11, suspended constitutional protections in the name of national security and suppressed our civil liberties for our own good. This article reviewed their newest tools and wonders what’s next. This writer called it Police State America in December that won’t change with a new White House occupant in 2009 unless organized resistance stops it. Complacency is unthinkable, and unless we act, we’ll deserve Aleksandr Herzen’s curse of another era – to be the “disease,” not the “doctors.”

Stephen Lendman is Research Associate of the Centre for Research on Globalization (CRG). He lives in Chicago and can be reached at lendmanstephen@sbcglobal.net.

Also visit his blog site at www.sjlendman.blogspot.com.

Stephen Lendman is a frequent contributor to Global Research. Global Research Articles by Stephen Lendman

The CRG grants permission to cross-post original Global Research articles on community internet sites as long as the text & title are not modified. The source and the author’s copyright must be displayed. For publication of Global Research articles in print or other forms including commercial internet sites, contact: crgeditor@yahoo.com

www.globalresearch.ca contains copyrighted material the use of which has not always been specifically authorized by the copyright owner. We are making such material available to our readers under the provisions of “fair use” in an effort to advance a better understanding of political, economic and social issues. The material on this site is distributed without profit to those who have expressed a prior interest in receiving it for research and educational purposes. If you wish to use copyrighted material for purposes other than “fair use” you must request permission from the copyright owner.

For media inquiries: crgeditor@yahoo.com
© Copyright Stephen Lendman, Global Research, 2008
The url address of this article is: www.globalresearch.ca/index.php?context=va&aid=7824

see

Police State America – A Look Back and Ahead by Stephen Lendman

Homeland Security to press ahead with Real ID by Anne Broache

Prisoners ‘to be chipped like dogs’ by Brian Brady

So much for the number of the Beast

RFID/Chips/Tracking

RFID

Police State

Randi Rhodes interviews Kucinich on NBC shutting him out

Dandelion Salad

airamericaradio

http://www.therandirhodesshow.com
http://www.myspace.com/randirhodes

January 17, 2008

***

Media wrong to exclude Kucinich

by Rebecca Wolfe
HeraldNet,com
January 17, 2008

The message of Rep. Dennis Kucinich was once again withheld from the public. NBC News, after inviting Kucinich to the Nevada Democratic presidential debate, reversed its decision and successfully appealed a judge’s ruling that Kucinich be included.

The control of U.S. elections by corporate interests is very dangerous. Nearly all of the secure, online (and live) straw polls have been won by Kucinich. Kucinich has won the post-debate polls on “Who won the debate?” — but the networks and the best-funded candidates (Edwards, Clinton and Obama), as well as the Democratic Party itself, do not want you to hear what Kucinich has to say.

continued…

***

NBC excludes Kucinich from debate: a gross violation of democratic rights

By David Walsh
World Socialist Web Site
17 January 2008

Welcome to democracy, General Electric-style.

The exclusion of Ohio Congressman Dennis Kucinich from the Democratic Party presidential candidates’ debate in Las Vegas Tuesday night casts a bright light on the reality of American political life: NBC, a privately owned company and a subsidiary of giant conglomerate General Electric, had the final word as to who would participate and who would not.

When necessary, the American television and media giants posture as “public servants,” dedicated to the general welfare of the community. When an issue arises that they perceive to be threatening to their economic or political position, the networks reveal themselves for what they are: private firms that manage public opinion in the interests of the profit system.

Dennis Kucinich is no threat to American corporate power. His campaign is largely an attempt to convince opponents of the Iraq war and others that the Democratic Party, deeply discredited in the eyes of wide layers of the population, is large enough to encompass their views. Nonetheless, here we have the case of a giant transnational corporation directly intervening to exclude a candidate from an event advertised as an exchange on critical political issues.

General Electric, NBC’s parent company, is one of the largest corporations in the world (11th in the Fortune Global 500 on the basis of $168 billion in revenues in 2006), and a major defense contractor, with extensive business dealings in both Iraq and Afghanistan.

continued…

FAIR USE NOTICE: This blog may contain copyrighted material. Such material is made available for educational purposes, to advance understanding of human rights, democracy, scientific, moral, ethical, and social justice issues, etc. This constitutes a ‘fair use’ of any such copyrighted material as provided for in Title 17 U.S.C. section 107 of the US Copyright Law. In accordance with Title 17 U.S.C. Section 107, the material on this site is distributed without profit to those who have expressed a prior interest in receiving the included information for research and educational purposes. If you wish to use copyrighted material from this site for purposes of your own that go beyond ‘fair use’, you must obtain permission from the copyright owner.

see

Breaking the Sound Barrier: Kucinich Answers Debate Questions (video)

News Media Succeeds In Being Allowed To Pick Winner Of 2008 Election

Big Business is Even More Unpopular Than You Thought By Robert Weissman

Hacking Democracy (must see videos; 2006)

Kucinich Vows to Fight for Changes to FCC Law

Was Yucca Mountain the Real Reason Kucinich Was Silenced by GE?

How the American Media Enables Bush By Ayesha Ijaz Khan

Dandelion Salad

By Ayesha Ijaz Khan

ICH
16/01/08 “
Counterpunch

The Iran Fixation

President George Bush has a few months left in office. Many analysts have believed for some time now that before he retires from that position, he will have orchestrated an attack either against Syria or Iran. Increasingly, it seems that his fixation is with Iran. After much was made by the Bush administration about Iran’s covert nuclear program, recently there was acknowledgment that many of those fears may have been over-exaggerated or even misplaced. Yet no one from the administration was taken to task for spreading such sinister misinformation. More disturbingly, there was no substantive criticism from the American media either.

To the contrary, US media has increasingly become a mouthpiece of the Bush administration, perpetuating and ventilating the fears which prevent a population from thinking rationally about important issues. I happened to be in New York a few months ago when President Ahmedinijad arrived to address the United Nations General Assembly. The day he landed, local press ran shocking headlines in the newspapers. “Tehran Thug Comes To Town,” read one; “Terror Has Landed,” said another. It was the kind of diction one expects from a grade school bully, not intellectually honest analysis of issues with global ramifications.

Dismissing some of the local papers as tabloids, I picked up a copy of The New Yorker magazine, only to find on its cover a demeaning representation of President Ahmedinijad sitting on the toilet, pants down, playing footsie with the man in the next stall. Surely, for the American audience, it was a take on the Republican Senator from Idaho who had recently been caught doing just that with an undercover cop at an airport bathroom and a jibe simultaneously at Ahmedinijad, who had denied in his speech at Columbia University that homosexuality existed in Iran.

But to many American Muslims it was flagrant cultural insensitivity to caricaturize a head of state in such a way, and also a reminder that Iran was being demeaned through its President only so the attack could soon be justified. It reminded Muslims of the early nineties when Saddam toilet paper had taken America by storm, only to be followed by operation Desert Storm. That is how the propaganda machine works. First you degrade and then you attack. The invitation handed out to Mr. Ahmedinijad by Columbia University brought matters to a head. Mr. Bollinger, Columbia’s President, made every effort to insult his guest, which may have been satisfying to some Americans, but left the rest of the world baffled. One would invite a speaker, presumably, so one could hear his point of view with an open mind. Argue with him, debate him, disagree with him, certainly, but insult him before he even opens his mouth? Muslim countries pride themselves on their culture of hospitality and the offensive and aggressive posturing towards Ahmedinijad only further bolstered his image in the Islamic world, while tainting America’s.

Instead of reporting neutrally on the situation, American television rallied behind Mr. Bollinger, feeding a clash of civilizations. From the “No-Spin Zone” on Fox to “Keeping Them Honest” on CNN, American reporting on international affairs was devoid of objective analysis, preferring instead to divide the world into “good and evil” and refusing to see any “good” ever on the “evil” side of our world. Unlike most countries of the world today, the overwhelming majority of Americans also did not have the option to watch television based out of any other country. So it was either the American version or no version at all, other than a very sanitized BBC America, which some people caught on their cable channels.

Perhaps it was this frustration with having to report in such a biased one-sided manner, a nearly obsessive form of self-censorship, that led some newscasters to abandon altogether any seriousness that naturally comes with debating important global issues, preferring instead to dumb-down news to a level of flippant comedy. Jon Stewart, Bill Maher, and Keith Olbermann all seemed to disagree with the Bush administration’s handling of foreign policy, yet instead of presenting serious critiques, pinpointing precise failings, they had resorted to comic relief at the expense of the establishment. It was better than nothing, and in my three month summer sojourn in New York, I watched Bill Maher regularly, but I could not help but feel that slapstick news was America’s way of escaping the real problems rather than an attempt at solving them.

Come mid-October, I had returned to London, with access to all variety of news transmitted in English, British, French, Arabic, Russian, and of course American. The attack on Iran had thankfully not materialized, but then came the alleged speedboat incident in the Strait of Hormuz a few days ago. The US Navy claimed that they had been threatened by Iranian speedboats. It was not until the Iranians released their version of the events, also on video, that the US Navy’s claims were exposed. It appears to me that this was nothing more than the excuse Mr. Bush has been so searching for to wage war against Iran.

Once again, it was extremely disappointing that the American media did not question or criticize the US Navy and government’s very dubious role in this very serious matter. Even after the Iranians released their tape and it was plainly clear that the voice that had threatened an explosion did not come from the Iranian patrols and most likely had been recorded later on, American media preferred to hush up the incident by attributing it to another ship in the area or a transmitter on land.

Had this happened in Pakistan, I could not help but think, everyone would have been talking about the government duping its people into a war. So perhaps it is the Pakistani in me that never rules out a conspiracy theory.

But what would have happened if the Iranians sat tight and did not offer their version? What will happen in months to come? Will the Bush administration continue to find excuses to throw America into another unjustifiable war? Will the American media just sit on the sidelines and watch while that happens? Is their obligation to the people of the United States or to the Bush administration?

Ayesha Ijaz Khan is a London-based lawyer and writer and can be contacted via her website www.ayeshaijazkhan.com

FAIR USE NOTICE: This blog may contain copyrighted material. Such material is made available for educational purposes, to advance understanding of human rights, democracy, scientific, moral, ethical, and social justice issues, etc. This constitutes a ‘fair use’ of any such copyrighted material as provided for in Title 17 U.S.C. section 107 of the US Copyright Law. In accordance with Title 17 U.S.C. Section 107, the material on this site is distributed without profit to those who have expressed a prior interest in receiving the included information for research and educational purposes. If you wish to use copyrighted material from this site for purposes of your own that go beyond ‘fair use’, you must obtain permission from the copyright owner.

see

Is Bush preparing the world for another USS Liberty by Trevor Murphy?

How The Pentagon Planted a False Hormuz Story by Gareth Porter

Iranian University Chancellors Ask Bollinger 10 Questions

Columbia President Bollinger Introduces Ahmadinejad (video)

Mahmoud Ahmadinejad speaks at Columbia University (video link)

Mahmoud Ahmadinejad speaks at the UN (videos)

Leno Interrupted by Kucinich & Impeachment Supporters

Dandelion Salad

evajames

“The Tonight Show with Jay Leno” guest Bill Maher is interrupted by Kucinich and impeachment supporters.

Added: January 16, 2008

***

Impeachment Activists Disrupt Jay Leno’s Tonight Show To Protest Nbc And To Support Pres. Candidate Dennis Kucinich

After Downing Street
Wed, 2008-01-16

L.A. National Impeachment Center (www.bcimpeach.com)

Four political activists were escorted out of Jay Leno’s Tonight Show studio in Burbank, CA on Tuesday, January 15, 2007, after disrupting NBC’s “live-on-tape” recording of the show. The activists were L.A. National Impeachment Center members, fed up with media censorship of popular support for the impeachment of President Bush and Vice-President Cheney, and Kucinich supporters outraged that NBC went to the Nevada Supreme Court to prevent Presidential candidate Rep. Dennis Kucinich from appearing on Tuesday’s MSNBC Democratic debate in Las Vegas.

The activists’ comments were heard on the NBC broadcast of The Tonight Show which aired nationally later that evening. The disruption began soon after guest Bill Maher came on, when activist Mark Lipman stood up and shouted: “Let Dennis debate: Stop the censorship! Help save our democracy. Let Dennis debate!” Lipman was escorted out while Lipman and Maher ad-libbed about the disturbance and then resumed their conversation about politics.

Maher criticized “the keep-it-simple press” which has “bought this idea that ‘George Bush, he had this idea of a surge, and it works, and he’s a genius, and we’re winning in Iraq!’ ” Maher then received huge applause for stating: “We’re not winning in Iraq, we lost that war when we invaded Iraq because it was a bad idea to begin with.”

Soon after, Maher joked: “for his next war that he’s planning in Iran, instead of invading Iran, why don’t we just show him footage of one of his other disasters—Katrina, or Iraq—and just tell him: there you go, Godzilla, you did it again.” It was shortly after that when a second activist, Jennifer Epps, jumped up and chanted: “GE, NBC, Put Impeachment on TV” twice. At that point Leno cued the commercial.

GE is NBC’s parent company, and is also the country’s third largest weapons manufacturer.

During the break, two other activists, Marian Galbraith and Carol Barbieri, were discovered and forced out of the audience by security. The activists displayed an ‘”IMPEACH BUSH & CHENEY” banner and threw “IMPEACHMENT IS PATRIOTIC” bumper stickers into the audience while shouting “Free Speech, Impeach” over the band music on their way out.

BILL MAHER AND JAY LENO DISCUSS PROTESTERS:

When The Tonight Show returned from break, Leno alluded to “controversy” as he welcomed viewers back with “we’re talking to Bill Maher.” Maher quipped: “You’re not just talking to me; the whole audience is talking to me.” Leno replied: “That’s right, some people in the audience were protesting”, and then brought up, “You had protesters on your show,” referring to a similar disruption in October 2007 of Maher’s live show, RealTime with Bill Maher. On that occasion, RealTime was disrupted by 911 Truth activists.

The four activists who disrupted The Tonight Show yesterday were not part of the disruption of RealTime, and it was a coincidence that Maher happened to be the guest. The political action in support of impeachment and against MSNBC’s censorship of Kucinich took place that day merely because that was the day of the MSNBC presidential debate and the day that Rep. Robert Wexler (D-FL, 19th) was arguing for impeachment hearings in Congress.

The four activists were not arrested on Jan. 15th but were given an advisory warning by NBC security not to return. After the show ended, the group stayed on the street to explain to the audience exiting the studio the reasons for the protest. “This goes way beyond just one candidate,” said Lipman. “This is a question of Freedom of Speech and preserving our democracy. It is horribly ironic how the corporations in this country, in this case NBC, a GE company, are allowed to exclude Dennis Kucinich from the debates under the protection of the First Amendment, when those same rights are being denied to the public at large and to official presidential candidates.”

H.R. 799: KUCINICH’S RESOLUTION TO IMPEACH CHENEY:

The L.A. National Impeachment Center endorses the presidential candidacy of Kucinich because he proposed a resolution to impeach Vice-President Cheney, HR799. The resolution has 25 co-sponsors but is sitting in the House Judiciary Committee. On the same day that Kucinich was being excluded from MSNBC’s debate, Rep. Wexler, a member of the Judiciary Committee who has spoken out strongly in favor of holding hearings on the impeachment of the Vice-President, presented a petition on the House floor with 189,000 signatures in support of hearings: the signatures had been submitted to www.wexlerwantshearings.com.

House Speaker Nancy Pelosi, who declared over a year ago that impeachment is “off the table,” absented herself from the proceedings.

THE L.A. NATIONAL IMPEACHMENT CENTER (www.bcimpeach.com):

The L.A. National Impeachment Center (LANIC) was inaugurated on Independence Day, July 4th, 2007, to work for the impeachment of Bush and Cheney for high crimes and misdemeanors, including: lies intended to deceive Congress and the American public to allow a war on Iraq, similar lies intended to deceive Congress and the American public to allow military force against Iran, failure to authorize federal resources to rescue the victims of Hurricane Katrina, illegal surveillance of untold numbers of American citizens, illegal torture, 800 signing statements by the President refusing to abide by laws passed by Congress, denial of global warming science, obstruction of justice, obstruction of Congress, and other impeachable offences.

LESSONS OF HISTORY:

LANIC was one of the groups in the White Rose Coalition which protested at the Rose Parade in Pasadena on Jan. 1st, managing to get their IMPEACH signs seen during NBC’s coverage of the Parade. The White Rose Coalition is named after the historic White Rose Society in Nazi Germany which protested the Third Reich’s militarism and violations of constitutional rights. They were a band of students who tried to alert their fellow-citizens to the Third Reich’s dismantling of German democracy. Part of the message of the modern-day White Rose Coalition is that the Bush Administration has brought about many changes to American society which are fascistic, totalitarian, and on a similar path as what happened in Germany.

www.bcimpeach.com

Marian Galbraith: 323-661-8912

Jennifer Epps: 310-683-8288

see

Wexler calls for Cheney’s impeachment (video; Spanish subtitles)

Kucinich-Dennis

Dennis 4 President

Impeach