Chickens of Our Own Making by Cindy Sheehan

The Real Cindy Sheehan


by Cindy Sheehan
Dandelion Salad
featured writer
March 15, 2008

“We bombed Hiroshima, we bombed Nagasaki, and we nuked far more than the thousands in New York and the Pentagon, and we never batted an eye. We have supported state terrorism against the Palestinians and black South Africans, and now we are indignant because the stuff we have done overseas is now brought right back to our own front yards. America’s chickens are coming home to roost.”

— Reverend Jeremiah Wright; Sept. 16th 2001

White America refuses to study, reflect, and learn a lesson from history…

— Malcom X in “Chickens Coming Home to Roost”

Malcolm X’s story is familiar to many people here in America. Denzel Washington played him brilliantly in the eponymous movie. Malcolm X never backed down from a challenge or from the truth. In his speech after the horrible assassination of Pres. John Kennedy, he rightly said that, “White America refuses to study, reflect and learn lessons from history.” Apparently, some people in black America aren’t so good at learning from the past, either.

Senator Barack Obama is being credited by many with being the candidate of “change and hope.” For the life of me, I would love to believe this. I would love to believe that anyone who is still involved in the race for the White House (that is rarely won by the most honest, sharpest, or best candidate) will bring hope and healing to our broken nation that desperately needs it. After almost eight years of ruinous BushCo, and really since April 30, 1789 when George Washington took his first oath of office, our country has been ruled by white men who have been several cuts above our third president named George, but who more often than not have been disastrous, also.

Barack Obama has denounced the above remarks of his mentor and pastor, Rev. Wright saying: “I categorically denounce any statement that disparages our great country or serves to divide us from our allies.” Let’s parse the Rev’s statement.

“We bombed Hiroshima, we bombed Nagasaki, and we nuked far more than the thousands in New York and the Pentagon, and we never batted an eye.”

Yes, on December 7th, 1941 (another day that will live in infamy), a US Naval base in Pearl Harbor, Hawaii was attacked by Japan. On that day, 2338 American service personnel were tragically killed, but there was little of what our Pentagon calls “collateral damage,” civilians killed. As a matter of fact, during WWII, Japan killed very few American civilians. However, the US military command in the Pacific killed hundreds of thousands of Japanese civilians in aerial bombings and with the use of the new WMD; H-bombs. General Curtis LeMay informed future Secretary of Defense, Robert McNamara (who was under LeMay during WWII), that if the US had lost they would have been tried as “war criminals.” The loss of innocent life in Japan was numbered in the hundred of thousands and I don’t hear Senator Obama denouncing those acts of cowardice.

We have supported state terrorism against the Palestinians and black South Africans.

I think there is little dispute that Israel (which I assume is what Obama refers to when he says “allies”) receives approximately three billion dollars in aid from the U.S. each year and have brutally oppressed and occupied Palestinian lands for decades. In a one week’s period this month, Israel killed over 300 Palestinians and was “shocked” when 8 Jewish seminary students were killed in return. I hate and reject all loss of innocent life no matter what is the color, religion or nation of origin. I think Senator Obama may buy into the neocon lie that somehow Israeli or American lives are more precious than Arab lives or black lives. Not only has the US supported state-sanctioned terrorism in such places as Palestine and South Africa, but we are committing some more of our own in Iraq and Afghanistan.

…and now we are indignant because the stuff we have done overseas is now brought right back to our own front yards. America’s chickens are coming home to roost.

Yes, with arrogant American exceptionalism, we were indignant when almost 3000 of our brothers and sisters were killed on 9-11. We were indignant and we were stunned, shocked and sorrowed. But instead of searching our collective souls and reflecting about why they “hate us” so much, our insane president (backed by a bloodthirsty gang of racist opportunists) set off on a mission to send more chickens out into the world that will be a helluva bitch when they come home to roost.

Senator Obama also denounced any remarks that “disparaged our great country.” Hmm…does he denounce remarks that his own wife made about being proud to be an American for the first time in her “adult life?” I wish I could be proud of a nation that tortures people and imprisons them without basic legal rights. I wish I could be proud of a nation that has a sitting president that has been responsible for killing almost a million innocent Iraqi people in a misadventure that was based on lies and is for profit. I wish I could be proud of a nation that rapes its poor people to feed the already rich in a demented reverse Robin Hood affect. I wish I could be proud of a country where over a million children are homeless and hungry every night. I wish I could be proud of a nation that left our black brothers and sisters hanging off of their roofs after Katrina. The list can go on and on. Senator Obama needs to denounce me, because the policies of our government do not make me proud and oftentimes endlessly disgust me.

As a nation, we need to pull together and denounce the policies of our government, which were the cause of 9/11. We need to apologize for the gory excesses of BushCo and we must learn how to conserve and cut-back on our own consumeristic orgies to give the rest of the world some creature comforts that are basic human rights. We need to call our “chickens” back home to peacefully roost before they roost again in violence.

I sit here behind my computer screen in solidarity with Rev. Wright. Not only do I not denounce him, but I support him in telling the truth. I wish Senator Obama would recall how he once stood for truth. A desk in the oval office that has been corrupted by years of calumny is not worth selling ones soul for.

We need to “study, reflect and learn” from our history that has been violent, but where elected officials mostly fed the carnage for imperial conquest and corporate profit. The next step is “change.” True change; not more of nationalistic “same old, same old.” with a different name.

Cindy Sheehan for Congress

see

Obama Interview + Obama’s Pastor Problems + Sharpton compares Obama’s Pastor to Billy Graham

Advertisements

Seeds in the City – Cuba (video; 2003)

Dandelion Salad

journeymanpictures on July 23, 2007

June 2003

This is the remarkable story of how the people of Havana have pulled themselves back from the brink of disaster.

Faced with food shortages and widespread hunger, city dwellers began growing food on rooftops and in front of office buildings. “It was a very spontaneous movement. People started to grow things on every available place”, states one resident. Now, there are thousands of urban farms and more than a million tons of food is produced within the city.

Continue reading

Put young children on DNA list, urge UK police

Dandelion Salad

by Mark Townsend and Anushka Asthana
The Observer
Sunday March 16 2008

Primary school children should be eligible for the DNA database if they exhibit behaviour indicating they may become criminals in later life, according to Britain’s most senior police forensics expert.

Gary Pugh, director of forensic sciences at Scotland Yard and the new DNA spokesman for the Association of Chief Police Officers (Acpo), said a debate was needed on how far Britain should go in identifying potential offenders, given that some experts believe it is possible to identify future offending traits in children as young as five.

‘If we have a primary means of identifying people before they offend, then in the long-term the benefits of targeting younger people are extremely large,’ said Pugh. ‘You could argue the younger the better. Criminologists say some people will grow out of crime; others won’t. We have to find who are possibly going to be the biggest threat to society.’

…continued

h/t: CLG

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.

National Security & Homeland Security Presidential Directive 51 (2007)

Dandelion Salad

Previously posted. ~ Lo

by George Bush
www.whitehouse.gov

For Immediate Release
Office of the Press Secretary
May 9, 2007

NATIONAL SECURITY PRESIDENTIAL DIRECTIVE/NSPD 51

HOMELAND SECURITY PRESIDENTIAL DIRECTIVE/HSPD-20

Subject: National Continuity Policy

Purpose
(1) This directive establishes a comprehensive national policy on the continuity of Federal Government structures and operations and a single National Continuity Coordinator responsible for coordinating the development and implementation of Federal continuity policies. This policy establishes “National Essential Functions,” prescribes continuity requirements for all executive departments and agencies, and provides guidance for State, local, territorial, and tribal governments, and private sector organizations in order to ensure a comprehensive and integrated national continuity program that will enhance the credibility of our national security posture and enable a more rapid and effective response to and recovery from a national emergency.

Definitions

(2) In this directive:

(a) “Category” refers to the categories of executive departments and agencies listed in Annex A to this directive;

(b) “Catastrophic Emergency” means any incident, regardless of location, that results in extraordinary levels of mass casualties, damage, or disruption severely affecting the U.S. population, infrastructure, environment, economy, or government functions;

(c) “Continuity of Government,” or “COG,” means a coordinated effort within the Federal Government’s executive branch to ensure that National Essential Functions continue to be performed during a Catastrophic Emergency;

(d) “Continuity of Operations,” or “COOP,” means an effort within individual executive departments and agencies to ensure that Primary Mission-Essential Functions continue to be performed during a wide range of emergencies, including localized acts of nature, accidents, and technological or attack-related emergencies;

(e) “Enduring Constitutional Government,” or “ECG,” means a cooperative effort among the executive, legislative, and judicial branches of the Federal Government, coordinated by the President, as a matter of comity with respect to the legislative and judicial branches and with proper respect for the constitutional separation of powers among the branches, to preserve the constitutional framework under which the Nation is governed and the capability of all three branches of government to execute constitutional responsibilities and provide for orderly succession, appropriate transition of leadership, and interoperability and support of the National Essential Functions during a catastrophic emergency;

(f) “Executive Departments and Agencies” means the executive departments enumerated in 5 U.S.C. 101, independent establishments as defined by 5 U.S.C. 104(1), Government corporations as defined by 5 U.S.C. 103(1), and the United States Postal Service;

(g) “Government Functions” means the collective functions of the heads of executive departments and agencies as defined by statute, regulation, presidential direction, or other legal authority, and the functions of the legislative and judicial branches;

(h) “National Essential Functions,” or “NEFs,” means that subset of Government Functions that are necessary to lead and sustain the Nation during a catastrophic emergency and that, therefore, must be supported through COOP and COG capabilities; and

(i) “Primary Mission Essential Functions,” or “PMEFs,” means those Government Functions that must be performed in order to support or implement the performance of NEFs before, during, and in the aftermath of an emergency.

Policy

(3) It is the policy of the United States to maintain a comprehensive and effective continuity capability composed of Continuity of Operations and Continuity of Government programs in order to ensure the preservation of our form of government under the Constitution and the continuing performance of National Essential Functions under all conditions.

Implementation Actions

(4) Continuity requirements shall be incorporated into daily operations of all executive departments and agencies. As a result of the asymmetric threat environment, adequate warning of potential emergencies that could pose a significant risk to the homeland might not be available, and therefore all continuity planning shall be based on the assumption that no such warning will be received. Emphasis will be placed upon geographic dispersion of leadership, staff, and infrastructure in order to increase survivability and maintain uninterrupted Government Functions. Risk management principles shall be applied to ensure that appropriate operational readiness decisions are based on the probability of an attack or other incident and its consequences.

(5) The following NEFs are the foundation for all continuity programs and capabilities and represent the overarching responsibilities of the Federal Government to lead and sustain the Nation during a crisis, and therefore sustaining the following NEFs shall be the primary focus of the Federal Government leadership during and in the aftermath of an emergency that adversely affects the performance of Government Functions:

(a) Ensuring the continued functioning of our form of government under the Constitution, including the functioning of the three separate branches of government;

(b) Providing leadership visible to the Nation and the world and maintaining the trust and confidence of the American people;

(c) Defending the Constitution of the United States against all enemies, foreign and domestic, and preventing or interdicting attacks against the United States or its people, property, or interests;

(d) Maintaining and fostering effective relationships with foreign nations;

(e) Protecting against threats to the homeland and bringing to justice perpetrators of crimes or attacks against the United States or its people, property, or interests;

(f) Providing rapid and effective response to and recovery from the domestic consequences of an attack or other incident;

(g) Protecting and stabilizing the Nation’s economy and ensuring public confidence in its financial systems; and

(h) Providing for critical Federal Government services that address the national health, safety, and welfare needs of the United States.

(6) The President shall lead the activities of the Federal Government for ensuring constitutional government. In order to advise and assist the President in that function, the Assistant to the President for Homeland Security and Counterterrorism (APHS/CT) is hereby designated as the National Continuity Coordinator. The National Continuity Coordinator, in coordination with the Assistant to the President for National Security Affairs (APNSA), without exercising directive authority, shall coordinate the development and implementation of continuity policy for executive departments and agencies. The Continuity Policy Coordination Committee (CPCC), chaired by a Senior Director from the Homeland Security Council staff, designated by the National Continuity Coordinator, shall be the main day-to-day forum for such policy coordination.

(7) For continuity purposes, each executive department and agency is assigned to a category in accordance with the nature and characteristics of its national security roles and responsibilities in support of the Federal Government’s ability to sustain the NEFs. The Secretary of Homeland Security shall serve as the President’s lead agent for coordinating overall continuity operations and activities of executive departments and agencies, and in such role shall perform the responsibilities set forth for the Secretary in sections 10 and 16 of this directive.

(8) The National Continuity Coordinator, in consultation with the heads of appropriate executive departments and agencies, will lead the development of a National Continuity Implementation Plan (Plan), which shall include prioritized goals and objectives, a concept of operations, performance metrics by which to measure continuity readiness, procedures for continuity and incident management activities, and clear direction to executive department and agency continuity coordinators, as well as guidance to promote interoperability of Federal Government continuity programs and procedures with State, local, territorial, and tribal governments, and private sector owners and operators of critical infrastructure, as appropriate. The Plan shall be submitted to the President for approval not later than 90 days after the date of this directive.

(9) Recognizing that each branch of the Federal Government is responsible for its own continuity programs, an official designated by the Chief of Staff to the President shall ensure that the executive branch’s COOP and COG policies in support of ECG efforts are appropriately coordinated with those of the legislative and judicial branches in order to ensure interoperability and allocate national assets efficiently to maintain a functioning Federal Government.

(10) Federal Government COOP, COG, and ECG plans and operations shall be appropriately integrated with the emergency plans and capabilities of State, local, territorial, and tribal governments, and private sector owners and operators of critical infrastructure, as appropriate, in order to promote interoperability and to prevent redundancies and conflicting lines of authority. The Secretary of Homeland Security shall coordinate the integration of Federal continuity plans and operations with State, local, territorial, and tribal governments, and private sector owners and operators of critical infrastructure, as appropriate, in order to provide for the delivery of essential services during an emergency.

(11) Continuity requirements for the Executive Office of the President (EOP) and executive departments and agencies shall include the following:

(a) The continuation of the performance of PMEFs during any emergency must be for a period up to 30 days or until normal operations can be resumed, and the capability to be fully operational at alternate sites as soon as possible after the occurrence of an emergency, but not later than 12 hours after COOP activation;

(b) Succession orders and pre-planned devolution of authorities that ensure the emergency delegation of authority must be planned and documented in advance in accordance with applicable law;

(c) Vital resources, facilities, and records must be safeguarded, and official access to them must be provided;

(d) Provision must be made for the acquisition of the resources necessary for continuity operations on an emergency basis;

(e) Provision must be made for the availability and redundancy of critical communications capabilities at alternate sites in order to support connectivity between and among key government leadership, internal elements, other executive departments and agencies, critical partners, and the public;

(f) Provision must be made for reconstitution capabilities that allow for recovery from a catastrophic emergency and resumption of normal operations; and

(g) Provision must be made for the identification, training, and preparedness of personnel capable of relocating to alternate facilities to support the continuation of the performance of PMEFs.

(12) In order to provide a coordinated response to escalating threat levels or actual emergencies, the Continuity of Government Readiness Conditions (COGCON) system establishes executive branch continuity program readiness levels, focusing on possible threats to the National Capital Region. The President will determine and issue the COGCON Level. Executive departments and agencies shall comply with the requirements and assigned responsibilities under the COGCON program. During COOP activation, executive departments and agencies shall report their readiness status to the Secretary of Homeland Security or the Secretary’s designee.

(13) The Director of the Office of Management and Budget shall:

(a) Conduct an annual assessment of executive department and agency continuity funding requests and performance data that are submitted by executive departments and agencies as part of the annual budget request process, in order to monitor progress in the implementation of the Plan and the execution of continuity budgets;

(b) In coordination with the National Continuity Coordinator, issue annual continuity planning guidance for the development of continuity budget requests; and

(c) Ensure that heads of executive departments and agencies prioritize budget resources for continuity capabilities, consistent with this directive.

(14) The Director of the Office of Science and Technology Policy shall:

(a) Define and issue minimum requirements for continuity communications for executive departments and agencies, in consultation with the APHS/CT, the APNSA, the Director of the Office of Management and Budget, and the Chief of Staff to the President;

(b) Establish requirements for, and monitor the development, implementation, and maintenance of, a comprehensive communications architecture to integrate continuity components, in consultation with the APHS/CT, the APNSA, the Director of the Office of Management and Budget, and the Chief of Staff to the President; and

(c) Review quarterly and annual assessments of continuity communications capabilities, as prepared pursuant to section 16(d) of this directive or otherwise, and report the results and recommended remedial actions to the National Continuity Coordinator.

(15) An official designated by the Chief of Staff to the President shall:

(a) Advise the President, the Chief of Staff to the President, the APHS/CT, and the APNSA on COGCON operational execution options; and

(b) Consult with the Secretary of Homeland Security in order to ensure synchronization and integration of continuity activities among the four categories of executive departments and agencies.

(16) The Secretary of Homeland Security shall:

(a) Coordinate the implementation, execution, and assessment of continuity operations and activities;

(b) Develop and promulgate Federal Continuity Directives in order to establish continuity planning requirements for executive departments and agencies;

(c) Conduct biennial assessments of individual department and agency continuity capabilities as prescribed by the Plan and report the results to the President through the APHS/CT;

(d) Conduct quarterly and annual assessments of continuity communications capabilities in consultation with an official designated by the Chief of Staff to the President;

(e) Develop, lead, and conduct a Federal continuity training and exercise program, which shall be incorporated into the National Exercise Program developed pursuant to Homeland Security Presidential Directive-8 of December 17, 2003 (“National Preparedness”), in consultation with an official designated by the Chief of Staff to the President;

(f) Develop and promulgate continuity planning guidance to State, local, territorial, and tribal governments, and private sector critical infrastructure owners and operators;

(g) Make available continuity planning and exercise funding, in the form of grants as provided by law, to State, local, territorial, and tribal governments, and private sector critical infrastructure owners and operators; and

(h) As Executive Agent of the National Communications System, develop, implement, and maintain a comprehensive continuity communications architecture.

(17) The Director of National Intelligence, in coordination with the Attorney General and the Secretary of Homeland Security, shall produce a biennial assessment of the foreign and domestic threats to the Nation’s continuity of government.

(18) The Secretary of Defense, in coordination with the Secretary of Homeland Security, shall provide secure, integrated, Continuity of Government communications to the President, the Vice President, and, at a minimum, Category I executive departments and agencies.

(19) Heads of executive departments and agencies shall execute their respective department or agency COOP plans in response to a localized emergency and shall:

(a) Appoint a senior accountable official, at the Assistant Secretary level, as the Continuity Coordinator for the department or agency;

(b) Identify and submit to the National Continuity Coordinator the list of PMEFs for the department or agency and develop continuity plans in support of the NEFs and the continuation of essential functions under all conditions;

(c) Plan, program, and budget for continuity capabilities consistent with this directive;

(d) Plan, conduct, and support annual tests and training, in consultation with the Secretary of Homeland Security, in order to evaluate program readiness and ensure adequacy and viability of continuity plans and communications systems; and

(e) Support other continuity requirements, as assigned by category, in accordance with the nature and characteristics of its national security roles and responsibilities

General Provisions

(20) This directive shall be implemented in a manner that is consistent with, and facilitates effective implementation of, provisions of the Constitution concerning succession to the Presidency or the exercise of its powers, and the Presidential Succession Act of 1947 (3 U.S.C. 19), with consultation of the Vice President and, as appropriate, others involved. Heads of executive departments and agencies shall ensure that appropriate support is available to the Vice President and others involved as necessary to be prepared at all times to implement those provisions.

(21) This directive:

(a) Shall be implemented consistent with applicable law and the authorities of agencies, or heads of agencies, vested by law, and subject to the availability of appropriations;

(b) Shall not be construed to impair or otherwise affect (i) the functions of the Director of the Office of Management and Budget relating to budget, administrative, and legislative proposals, or (ii) the authority of the Secretary of Defense over the Department of Defense, including the chain of command for military forces from the President, to the Secretary of Defense, to the commander of military forces, or military command and control procedures; and

(c) Is not intended to, and does not, create any rights or benefits, substantive or procedural, enforceable at law or in equity by a party against the United States, its agencies, instrumentalities, or entities, its officers, employees, or agents, or any other person.

(22) Revocation. Presidential Decision Directive 67 of October 21, 1998 (“Enduring Constitutional Government and Continuity of Government Operations”), including all Annexes thereto, is hereby revoked.

(23) Annex A and the classified Continuity Annexes, attached hereto, are hereby incorporated into and made a part of this directive.

(24) Security. This directive and the information contained herein shall be protected from unauthorized disclosure, provided that, except for Annex A, the Annexes attached to this directive are classified and shall be accorded appropriate handling, consistent with applicable Executive Orders.

GEORGE W. BUSH

see

Bush Declares Himself Dictator – Presidential Directive 51 (May 2007; video)

New Evidence in Siegelman Case Points to Republican Cabal

Dandelion Salad

By Sam Stein
AlterNet
Huffington Postf
March 13, 2008

A group of Republicans were seeking to profit from the trial of former Alabama Gov. Don Siegelman.

A new review of evidence suggests that an aligned group of Republican interests were pressing for — and seeking to profit financially from — the trial of former Alabama Gov. Don Siegelman on charges of bribery.

According to court documents and official testimony, months before Siegelman was charged, Rob Riley, the son of the state’s governor, expressed confidence that an indictment would occur and that Siegelman’s political financier, Richard Scrushy, would be drawn into case.

Around the same time, moreover, Riley managed to maneuver himself into an extremely profitable position: lead local counsel on a separate, massive civil suit against Scrushy and his company, HealthSouth.

How he received the assignment aroused some suspicion.

Riley had limited experience in securities litigation. And, for critics, his appointment gave of the appearance of legal-political insider trading: the governor’s son, cognizant that Scrushy would be dragged into Siegelman’s case, saw the benefits to be had from the civil suit against Scrushy’s company, and positioned himself to profit.

Riley denied these charges in an interview with the Huffington Post, saying that he had no prior knowledge of Siegelman’s forthcoming indictment and arguing that he had been recruited to come on board the HealthSouth case, not the other way around.

What is agreed upon, however, is that Riley earned big money from his work. Ten months after he signed onto the HealthSouth suit, Siegelman was indicted. Less than a year after that, the former governor was convicted of bribery along with Scrushy. And months later, Health South settled for $445 million one of the largest settlements in securities litigation history.

In the early days of 2005, HealthSouth and Scrushy were in the midst of a long-waged battle over whether the company had “perpetrated an elaborate scheme to deceive HealthSouth’s investors.” The case alleged that the company, and its financial supporters, had “committed deceptive acts whose primary purpose and effect was to create a false appearance” of good financial results and future prospects. There were no connections to Siegelman.

On January 13, Rob Riley, a lawyer for the firm Riley & Jackson P.C. and the son of the state’s governor, was abruptly added as local counsel to the New Mexico State Investment Council, a relatively new plaintiff in the case against HealthSouth. It was an interesting move. Riley, who specialized in medical malpractice law, had little history in complex securities litigation. Co-plaintiffs complained, as they often do, that his presence would simply drive up the cost of the case and cut into the pot of any settlement. But their appeal was denied.

Why did Riley come on board? According to him, it was a product of local stature and a bit of luck.

“A guy in New Mexico said, ‘Hey, we are trying to get involved in this case,'” Riley recalled. “At that point, it was pretty well out in the papers that there had been fraud at HealthSouth. So I felt like it was probably a good case. I didn’t know what chance we had at being lead counsel.”

Another official with knowledge of the case said Riley was chosen primarily for his political connections.

But around that time, Jill Simpson, an Alabama Republican official and opposition researcher, told the House Judiciary Committee that Riley called her and said the state’s legal apparatus was gearing up to re-investigate Don Siegelman. Moreover, Simpson recalled Riley as saying that Republicans would tie the former governor with Scrushy, “a reviled figure in Alabama.”

Less than a year earlier, Siegelman had been indicted for conspiracy and Medicaid fraud but his trial — which seemed politically motivated — fell apart within a day in court.

On this new go-around, the prosecution had a more favorable judge. Mark Fuller, who had been appointed by President Bush to the U.S. District Court in the Middle District of Alabama, was well connected in Republican circles and, according to local Alabama journalist Glynn Wilson, had personal ties to Rob Riley.

Ten months after Riley signed onto the HealthSouth case, Siegelman and Scrushy were indicted on charges of political bribery. At the center of the charge was a $500,000 donation Scrushy made to the former governor’s 1999 campaign. The money had gone to the state’s education lottery and in exchange Scrushy got a position on a hospital regulatory board.

The connection, critics claim, was weak and prejudiced. Scrushy had been appointed to the board under several governors and his firm had no interests under the board’s purview. But the trial, which began ion April 2006, reverberated throughout Alabama’s political and legal circles. Siegelman’s bid to become governor again was snuffed out. And the civil trial against HealthSouth was altered.

“[Riley] very aggressively he thrust himself into that suit as a late comer,” said Scott Horton, a law professor at Columbia University who has written extensively on these issues for Harper’s magazine. “He knew that Fuller had made statements suggesting that he felt he had once been a target of a politically motivated attack by Siegelman. He knew that this would make someone predisposed against Siegelman and perfect hanging judge. And he would reap the benefit of the class action suit on the side.”

As the criminal case against Siegelman proceeded, so too did the suit against HealthSouth. And in the spring and summer of 2006, the two cases intersected.

According to the Associated Press, in May 2006, William McGahan, an official at UBS, one of HealthSouth’s investment bankers, testified in the Siegelman case that he had been pressured to pony up $250,000 for the donations to the state’s education lottery. The testimony had limited relevance to the class action suit. But, over objections, it found its way into the court record. McGahan, the document read, was eager to please Scrushy and “arranged for UBS to be the source of the funds for the bribe.”

What affect this, and Scrushy’s ongoing criminal trial, had on the proceedings is a subject of debate. Riley, pointing to earlier HealthSouth executives who had pleaded guilty to fraud, said he saw no tangible cross-over between the two cases.

“I don’t believe that had anything to do with the settlement,” he said. “I don’t think that it aided it at all.”

Two other lawyers who served with other plaintiffs on the class action suit against HealthSouth, however, offered different opinions.

“It is not common that you have criminal trials of corporate executive at the same time that a class action suit is taking place involving the same individual,” said Louis Mallone, an attorney for O’Donoghue & O’Donoghue LLP and liaison counsel on the case. “It certainly didn’t hurt the prospects of the [class action case].”

A second official, who declined to speak on the record, said that while the HealthSouth case was a “slam dunk” even before the Scrushy-Siegelman trial began, having Scrushy as a convicted felon “obviously helped” the suit against HealthSouth.

In June 2006, both Siegelman and Scrushy were convicted on charges of bribery. Siegelman was sentenced to seven years and four months in federal prison. Scrushy was given six years and ten months.

Months later the HealthSouth case, after years of trial, was finally settled. The company announced that it would pay a whopping $445 million. It was, said Malone, “one of the top fifteen or twenty [settlements] of all time.”

Riley declined to reveal what he made from the case, saying that the amount was “evolving.” But he did acknowledge that it was substantial. “It was a very good settlement,” he said. “But at the same time there was a lot of work that went into it.

For critics, however, the message was clear. Riley knew Scrushy going down in the criminal trial and saw a way to reap the benefits on the separate civil suit. In other words: Good work, if you can get it.

“Rob Riley approved of the strategy of the dragging Scrushy into the [criminal] case because it would have benefits for him in the class action suit,” said Horton. “It was clear that he was intently following what was going on in Fuller’s court and knew that the conviction of Scrushy in that case would have strong benefits in the class action suit.”

***

Don Siegelman : “All Roads Lead To Rove”

crooksandliars.com

DailyKos:

March 15th, 2008

All roads lead to Rove. That was the message scrawled as an afterthought in the lower left-hand corner of the envelope I received in yesterday’s mail. It contained a letter from an old and dear friend of mine. His name is Don Siegelman. He is the former governor of Alabama and he is being held as a political prisoner of the Bush administration in a Federal prison in Louisiana.

They don’t allow Don the luxury of stationary so he must write his letters on whatever he can find. He wrote me on a xeroxed article he wanted me to see. [..]

When I first heard of Don being prosecuted for corruption my heart sank. I didn’t know what to think. It had been years since we’d spoken and the press made it sound awful for Don (what else?). Of course I had no idea what was really going on. Now that I do I am horrified…and furious.

Don is a formidable force in Alabama politics. His friends are loyal and his supporters enthusiastic. They re-elected him Governor in the midst of a bogus corruption trial engineered by the Bush Justice Department at the behest of Karl Rove who takes orders from you-know-who. Don campaigned for re-election throughout the early phases of the trial. On election night he was declared the winner, but Karl Rove’s minions stole the election overnight by manipulating the ballots in Baldwin County. It was classic Rovian/Republican election theft. They did it with computers and electronic voting machines. Don went to bed the re-elected Governor of Alabama, and woke up an unemployed defendant. [..]

Something that has not been reported is that they have been physically beating Don. I don’t know the extent of his injuries or exactly how many times it has happened – but it has been multiple times.

There are no words for the fury I feel. This is an outrage. And it is the most un-American thing I have ever heard. I cry bitter tears of frustration and rage.

Please everyone. We have to help Don, and we have to crush these thugs and put them out of the business of perverting our democracy. We must investigate and prosecute the responsible parties, not for political reasons, but to actually serve the interest of justice. The cause of justice calls upon us to hold these criminals accountable. We must bring them to justice and stop such travesties from ever again happening in our United States of America.

Please contact Rep. John Conyers and Sen. Patrick Leahy, chairmen of their respective Judiciary committees and ask them to appoint an Independent Investigator. You can also donate to Siegelman’s Defense Fund.

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

Why is Don Siegelman Still in Prison?

60 Minutes: Don Siegelman (vids) + Parts of Broadcast Blocked in Alabama…

Siegelman-Don

Griffin Takes Powerful New Approach to 9/11 Truth

Dandelion Salad

by Tod Fletcher
Global Research, March 15, 2008

Review of David Ray Griffin’s latest book

9/11 CONTRADICTIONS by David Ray Griffin is the fifth of his books to examine the official account of the events of September 11, 2001. This brilliant and highly readable book takes a new yet simple approach to the truth about 9/11. It focuses entirely on contradictory statements made by members of the Bush administration, government departments and agencies, and official bodies such as the 9/11 Commission. All the statements that Griffin examines are official claims in direct conflict with other official claims. How could this be? Why would the government keep changing “the official story”? The public, of course, is expected to take all the statements as incontrovertibly true, yet they directly conflict with one another.

And why, if the government pronouncements are contradictory, haven’t members of Congress and the mainstream media launched investigations to determine which are true and which are false, and to ask why are obvious falsehoods about the events of 9/11 being promulgated by the government? I say “obvious falsehoods” because, as Griffin explains in the Preface, “If [Transportation Secretary Norman] Mineta said “P,” that is a fact. If the 9/11 Commission said “not P,” that is a fact. And it is a fact that “P” and “not P” cannot both be true” (p. viii). The subtitle, “An Open Letter to Congress and the Press,” indicates Griffin’s hope that the juxtaposition of the contradictory claims the book provides will stimulate such investigations. But the book is really intended for the public at large, and its clear focus makes it the easiest to read of all Griffin’s books on 9/11. Because of its relative simplicity it is a perfect introduction to the subject.

Drawing on government publications, media reports, testimony from the 9/11 Commission hearings, oral histories from the Fire Department of New York, and other official sources, Griffin documents masterfully 25 of the most serious contradictions, divided into five parts:

“Part I. Questions about Bush Administration and Pentagon Leaders,” reveals the contradictory claims about the activities of George Bush, Dick Cheney, Richard Myers, Donald Rumsfeld and Ted Olson. In this part Griffin shows that Bush’s long stay at the Florida school was initially confirmed and later denied by the White House, that various government spokespersons and the 9/11 Commission could not agree on where Cheney, Myers and Rumsfeld were at key times that morning, and that DOJ Solicitor General Ted Olson’s claims to have received phone calls from his wife on Flight 77 were directly contradicted by the DOJ’s FBI.

“Part II. Questions about the US Military,” explores the many contradictions within government claims about when the military was alerted to the emergencies on the flights, whether the military could have shot down Flight 93, and whether it had envisioned 9/11-type attacks prior to that day.

“Part III. Questions about Osama bin Laden & the Hijackers,” examines the contradictions in official claims about the religious devotion of the alleged hijackers, where the luggage with the Arabic-language flight manuals, attributed to Mohamed Atta, was found, whether cell phone calls from the flights provided evidence of hijackers, and the existence of hard evidence for Osama bin Laden’s responsibility.

“Part IV. Questions about the Pentagon,” spotlights contradictions in the official account of Hani Hanjour’s flying skills, what caused the large hole in the interior C Ring wall of the building, and whether a sophisticated US military reconnaissance plane was overhead during the attack.

“Part V. Questions about the World Trade Center,” exposes the contradictions in Rudy Giuliani’s account of his foreknowledge of the catastrophic collapse of the Twin Towers, in the official claims about explosions in the towers and WTC 7 before they disintegrated, and in official statements concerning the presence of molten steel in the subbasements after the buildings came down.

When examined under Griffin’s microscope, it becomes clear that the “official story” has kept changing over time, just like the stories criminals tell as they are interrogated. As holes in the government’s explanations of the incomprehensible events opened up under questioning, to some degree from the press but primarily from the 9/11 truth movement, they were plugged by new claims. And virtually all of the new claims have been accepted by the press and Congress without asking how they could be true in light of the earlier, contradictory claims. You don’t need to be a conspiracy theorist to see that when the story keeps changing, doubt is cast on all of its versions. Any police investigator knows this, as should investigative journalists and elected representatives.

Of course, if Congress and the press won’t do their jobs, it’s up to the rest of us. With this authoritative dissection of the conflicting statements of the principal suspects, Griffin has done much of the pre-trial legwork already. The American public should not allow his selfless devotion to truth and justice to be squandered by inaction. This may be one of those things that representatives just cannot do for us.

Link to Amazon:
http://www.amazon.com/11-CONTRADICTIONS-Letter-Congress-Press/

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 Tod Fletcher, Global Research, 2008
The url address of this article is: www.globalresearch.ca/index.php?context=va&aid=8352

Bill Moyers Journal: Government Oversight + Rick Karr on Government Secrecy

Dandelion Salad

Bill Moyers Journal
PBS
March 14, 2008

Undoubtedly, the daily grind of congressional hearings passes by most Americans unremarked and probably unseen. Only the most high-profile will make the evening news. But they are the very stuff of government.

BILL MOYERS JOURNAL looks back at a years-worth of hearings held by the House Committee on Oversight and Government Reform, the investigative arm of the House, and speaks with the Committee Chair, Representative Henry Waxman, about the Committee’s role in the government:

“It’s almost like having a policeman on the beat. If no one thinks they’re being watched and being held accountable, they think they can get away with anything.”

Video link and transcript Part 1

Video link and transcript Part 2

Rick Karr on Government Secrecy

Are muckrakers and whistleblowers facing insurmountable odds?

Video link and transcript

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

Edmonds-Sibel

Country of Laws by Ralph Nader

Dandelion Salad

by Ralph Nader
Friday, March 14. 2008

The Governor of New York, Eliot Spitzer, has resigned for being a longtime customer of a high-priced prostitution ring.

The President of the United States, George W. Bush, remains, disgracing his office for longtime repeated violations of the Constitution, federal laws and international treaties to which the U.S. is a solemn signatory.

In his forthright resignation statement, Eliot Spitzer—the prominent corporate crime buster—asserted that “Over the course of my public life, I have insisted, I believe correctly, that people, regardless of their position or power, take responsibility for their conduct. I can and will ask no less of myself.”

In a recent speech to a partisan Republican fund-raising audience, George W. Bush fictionalized his Iraq war exploits and other related actions, and said that next January he will leave office “with his head held high.”

Eliot Spitzer violated certain laws regarding prostitution and transferring of money through banks—though the latter was disputed by some legal experts—and for such moral turpitude emotionally harmed himself, his family and his friends.

George W. Bush violated federal laws against torture, against spying on Americans without judicial approval, against due process of law and habeas corpus in arresting Americans without charges, imprisoning them and limited their access to attorneys. He committed a massive war of aggression violating again and again treaties such as the Geneva Conventions, the UN Charter, federal statutes and the Constitution.

This war and its associated actions have cost the lives of one million Iraqis, over 4000 Americans, caused hundreds of thousands of serious injuries and diseases related to the destruction of Iraq’s public health facilities.

From the moment the news emerged about Spitzer’s sexual frolics the calls came for his immediate resignation. They came from the pundits and editorialists; they came from Republicans and they started coming from his fellow Democrats in the Assembly.

Speaker Sheldon Silver told Spitzer that many Democrats in the Assembly would abandon him in any impeachment vote.

George W. Bush is a recidivist war criminal and chronic violator of so many laws that the Center for Constitutional Rights has clustered them into five major impeachable “High Crimes and Misdemeanors” (under Article II, section .4)

Scores of leaders of the bar, including Michael Greco, former president of the American Bar Association, and legal scholars and former Congressional lawmakers have decried his laceration of the rule of law and his frequent declarations that signify that he believes he is above the law.

Many retired high military officers, diplomats and security officials have openly opposed his costly militaristic disasters.

Only Cong. Dennis Kucinich (Dem. Ohio) has publicly called for his impeachment.

No other member of Congress has moved toward his impeachment. To the contrary, Speaker Nancy Pelosi (Dem. Calif.), Rep. Steny Hoyer (Dem. MD) and House Judiciary Committee Chairman, John Conyers publicly took “impeachment off the table” in 2006.

When Senator Russ Feingold (Dem. Wisc.) introduced a Resolution to merely censure George W. Bush for his clear, repeated violations of the Foreign Intelligence Surveillance Act—a felony—his fellow Democrats looked the other way and ignored him.

Eliot Spitzer came under the rule of law and paid the price with his governorship and perhaps may face criminal charges.

George W. Bush is effectively immune from federal criminal and civil laws because no American has standing to sue him and the Attorney General, who does, is his handpicked cabinet member.

Moreover, the courts have consistently refused to take cases involving the conduct of foreign and military policy by the president and the Vice President regardless of the seriousness of the violation. The courts pronounce such disputes as “political” and say they have to be worked out by the Congress—ie. mainly the impeachment authority.

Meanwhile, the American people have no authority to challenge these governmental crimes, which are committed in their name, and are rendered defenseless except for elections, which the two Party duopoly has rigged, commercialized, and trivialized. Even in this electoral arena, a collective vote of ouster of the incumbents does not bring public officials to justice, just to another position usually in the high paying corporate world.

So, on January 21, 2009, George W. Bush and Dick Cheney will be fugitives from justice without any Sheriffs, prosecutors or courts willing to uphold the rule of law.

What are the lessons from the differential treatment of a public official who consorts with prostitutes, without affecting his public policies, and a President who behaves like King George III did in 1776 and commits the exact kinds of multiple violations that Thomas Jefferson, James Madison, and other founders of our Republic envisioned for invoking the impeachment provision of their carefully crafted checks and balances in the Constitution?

Well let’s see.

First, Bush and Cheney are advised not to travel to Brattleboro or Marlboro Vermont, two New England towns whose voters, in their frustrated outrage, passed non-binding articles instructing town officials to arrest them inside their jurisdictions.

Second, George W. Bush better not go to some men’s room at an airport and tap the shoe of the fellow in the next stall. While one Senator barely survived that charge, for the President it would mean a massive public demand for his resignation.

We certainly can do better as a country of laws, not men.

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

Living by the Sword by Ron Paul, M.D.

The $200 billion bail-out for predator banks & Spitzer charges are intimately linked By Greg Palast

Forget Spitzer, fire Bernanke By Chan Akya

Predatory Lenders’ Partner in Crime by Former NY Gov Eliot Spitzer

Nader-Ralph

www.votenader.org/

Tibetan monks lead protests against China + Tibet riots (vids)

Dandelion Salad

RussiaToday

Beijing has set a deadline of Monday for demonstrators in Tibet to surrender. Chinese officials say the violence in the last few days has left ten people dead. But exiled Tibetan leaders put the death toll at a hundred and claim many more protestors have been injured.

Continue reading

Living by the Sword by Ron Paul, M.D.

Dandelion Salad

by Ron Paul, M.D.
13 March 2008

It has been said that “he who lives by the sword shall die by the sword.” And in the case of Eliot Spitzer this couldn’t be more true. In his case it’s the political sword, as his enemies rejoice in his downfall. Most people, it seems, believe he got exactly what he deserved.

The illegal tools of the state brought Spitzer down, but think of all the harm done by Spitzer in using the same tools against so many other innocent people. He practiced what could be termed “economic McCarthyism,” using illegitimate government power to build his political career on the ruined lives of others.

No matter how morally justified his comeuppance may be, his downfall demonstrates the worst of our society. The possibility of uncovering personal moral wrongdoing is never a justification for the government to spy on our every move and to participate in sting operations.

For government to entice a citizen to break a law with a sting operation – that is, engaging in activities that a private citizen is prohibited by law from doing — is unconscionable and should clearly be illegal.

Though Spitzer used the same tools to destroy individuals charged with economic crimes that ended up being used against him, gloating over his downfall should not divert our attention from the fact that the government spying on American citizens is unworthy of a country claiming respect for liberty and the fourth amendment.

Two wrongs do not make a right. Two wrongs make it doubly wrong.

Sacrifice of our personal privacy has been ongoing for decades, but has rapidly accelerated since 9/11. Before 9/11 the unstated goal of collecting revenue was the real reason for the erosion of our financial privacy. When nineteen suicidal maniacs attacked us on 9/11, our country became convinced that further sacrifice of personal and financial privacy was required for our security.

The driving force behind this ongoing sacrifice of our privacy has been fear and the emotional effect of war rhetoric – war on drugs, war against terrorism, and the war against third world nations in the Middle East who are claimed to be the equivalent to Hitler and Nazi Germany.

But the real reason for all this surveillance is to build the power of the state. It arises from a virulent dislike of free people running their own lives and spending their own money. Statists always demand control of the people and their money.

Recently we’ve been told that this increase in the already intolerable invasion of our privacy was justified because the purpose was to apprehend terrorists. We were told that the massive amounts of information being collected on Americans would only be used to root out terrorists. But as we can see today, this monitoring of private activities can also be used for political reasons. We should always be concerned when the government accumulates information on innocent citizens.

Spitzer was brought down because he legally withdrew cash from a bank – not because he committed a crime. This should prompt us to reassess and hopefully reverse this trend of pervasive government intrusion in our private lives.

We need no more Foreign Intelligence Surveillance Act!

No more Violent Radicalization & Homegrown Terrorism Prevention Acts!

No more torture!

No more Military Commissions Act!

No more secret prisons and extraordinary rendition!

No more abuse of habeas corpus!

No more PATRIOT Acts!

What we need is more government transparency and more privacy for the individual!

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

The $200 billion bail-out for predator banks & Spitzer charges are intimately linked By Greg Palast

Forget Spitzer, fire Bernanke By Chan Akya

Predatory Lenders’ Partner in Crime by Former NY Gov Eliot Spitzer

Statement on H.R. 3773 – FISA Amendments Act of 2008 by Rep. Ron Paul, M.D.

Paul-Ron

Statement on H.R. 3773 – FISA Amendments Act of 2008 by Rep. Ron Paul, M.D.

Dandelion Salad

by Rep. Ron Paul, M.D.
14 March 2008

Mr Speaker, I rise in opposition to this latest attempt to undermine our personal liberties and violate the Fourth Amendment of the Constitution. This bill will allow the federal government to engage in the bulk collection of American citizens’ communications. In effect, it means that any American may have his electronic communications monitored without a search warrant.

As such, the bill clearly violates the Fourth Amendment, which states:

“The right of the people to be secure in their persons, houses, papers, and effects, against unreasonable searches and seizures, shall not be violated, and no Warrants shall issue, but upon probable cause, supported by Oath or affirmation, and particularly describing the place to be searched, and the persons or things to be seized.”

The assurances in this bill that Americans will not have their communications monitored without warrant are unconvincing. The bill merely states that the government should do its best to avoid monitoring Americans if possible. We have seen how meaningless such qualified prohibitions have been as we recount the abuses over the past several years.

Just today, we read in the news that the federal government has massively abused its ability to monitor us by improperly targeting Americans through the use of “national security letters.” Apparently some 60 percent of the more than 50,000 national security letters targeted Americans, rather than foreign terrorists, for surveillance.

This is what happens when we begin down the slippery slope of giving up our constitutional rights for the promise of more security. When we come to accept that the government can spy on us without a court order we have come to accept tyranny.

I urge my colleagues to reject this and all legislation that allows Americans to be spied on without a properly issued warrant.

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

Dennis Kucinich speaks about secret congress meeting!!! (video)

FBI Found to Misuse Security Letters By Dan Eggen

EFF Applauds House Passage of Surveillance Bill with No Telecom Immunity

Debate about Secret Session in House of Representatives (videos)

Debate about Secret Session in House of Representatives Part 2 (videos)

Dennis Kucinich: You Can’t Secure Our Nation With LIES!

Paul-Ron

Future of North America by Andrew G. Marshall

Digg It

by Andrew G. Marshall
featured writer
Dandelion Salad
March 15, 2008

Vancouver 2010, Coronation of the North American “Community”

Introduction:

The year 2010 will mark a very important date for all people living within Canada, the United States and Mexico. The often-cited Council on Foreign Relations (CFR) document, in conjunction with the Mexican Council on Foreign Relations and the Canadian Council of Chief Executives (CCCE), titled “Building a North America Community,” serves as the blueprint for the objectives of the Security and Prosperity Partnership of North America (SPP). The three above-mentioned “interest” groups make up the Independent Task Force on the Future of North America, who produced the report, in which they state, “The Task Force’s central recommendation is establishment by 2010 of a North American economic and security community, the boundaries of which would be defined by a common external tariff and an outer security perimeter.”1

Vancouver, British Columbia, will be hosting the 2010 Olympics. A 2006 “Report to Leaders” regarding the SPP states as one of its “Security Initiatives”, to “Develop and implement joint plans for cooperation on incident response, and conduct joint training and exercises in emergency response.” As a “Key Milestone”, they recommend to “Initiate planning within 6 months (December 2005) for a preparedness exercise to be conducted in advance of the 2010 Winter Olympics in Vancouver/Whistler.”2 A Vancouver daily newspaper reported on March 5, 2008, that “Canada, U.S. and Mexico are planning a massive joint military exercise in April 2009 “to focus on terrorist events that could affect [the] 2010 Olympics,” according to Public Safety Canada documents released to 2010 Watch via access to information.”3

As the march towards 2010 accelerates along with the march towards the “North American Community,” Vancouver will be subject to the establishment of a police state to provide “security” for the Olympics. In essence, Vancouver 2010 will mark the coronation of a “new” form of governance for North America, anointing a crown upon a regional bureaucracy and its corporate controllers, removing power from the people of each of the three nations.

The Vancouver 2010 Olympics are being overseen by the Minister of International Trade, David Emerson. Previously, David Emerson was former Prime Minister Paul Martin’s Minister of Industry, and when he signed the Security and Prosperity Partnership in 2005, Emerson became an official SPP Minister. He was also the CEO of Canfor Corporation, Canada’s largest softwood lumber producer.4

On November 5, 2003, before Paul Martin became Prime Minister, the Canadian Council of Chief Executives (CCCE) issued a letter which stated, “Making the case that North American economic integration is irreversible and that continental security is indivisible, the President and Chief Executive of the Canadian Council of Chief Executives (CCCE) has urged Paul Martin to take the lead in forging a new vision for North America.” They further outlined their “North American Security and Prosperity Initiative,” outlining what was to become the SPP. Among those who attached their names to this document include the Executive Committee of the CCCE, of which David Emerson was a member at the time.5

Clearly, the CCCE is very much involved with the Olympics, and just happen to be the driving force in Canada behind the SPP, in conjunction with the Council on Foreign Relations (CFR) in the US.

Police State Vancouver:

In 2005, an article in the Georgia Straight began by presenting a hypothetical situation to the reader, “If a group like al-Qaeda wanted to make a really sensational splash, it might try to disrupt the 2010 Winter Olympics opening ceremonies at BC Place Stadium. Crashing that event would guarantee a global audience, especially if Queen Elizabeth or Prince Charles were in the building at the time.” The article continued, “Sound ridiculous? Not according to Peter St. John, a security expert and academic who gives confidential briefings on terrorism to police forces,” saying Vancouver is a top “candidate” for a terror attack, and “that back in 1991, St. John predicted in a U.S. television interview that terrorists would one day crash airliners into two high-rise office buildings in New York City.”6

In 2006, Vancouver’s Police Chief Jamie Graham said, “public cameras would help in the Vancouver Police Department’s contribution to the War on Terror, before he went on to dismiss critics warning of privacy invasions with the usual corker, ‘If you’re doing nothing wrong, you’ve got nothing to hide’.” The article continued in stating, “The new police-installed anti-terrorism-juiced cameras won’t be your garden-variety, convenience-store set-up, but instead will be a centralized web of digital recorders linked to sophisticated computers running facial recognition software.”7 The Province reported that, “Vancouver cops want surveillance cameras installed along Granville Mall to help them round up the rowdies.”8 It was further reported in 2006 that, “Vancouver police say the city’s downtown entertainment district is turning into a battle zone and are asking for surveillance cameras to help deter rowdy behaviour.”9

Also in 2006, Vancouver began to test “a new police car-mounted device that automatically scans licence plates,” and that, “The new device uses a series of tiny cameras mounted on the squad car to automatically scan every licence plate it passes — up to 3,000 plates an hour — and checks the number against the police database.”10 It was again reported that, “At the May 17, 2006 meeting of the Vancouver Police Board, Former Chief Jamie Graham was given the green light by Board members to develop a business plan for the installation of surveillance cameras in a number of downtown neighbourhoods. The cameras cost a minimum $20,000 each and can be as more than five times that figure depending on the specific technology used.”11

In July 2007, the Georgia Straight reported that BC’s transit system, TransLink, “has approved a budget of almost $4 million to install “security cameras and video recording equipment” on the region’s bus fleet,” and has “estimated the annual cost for the CCTV system at $470,000.”12 Another police state program was put on hold for a while, as the Georgia Straight reported in 2007, “Plans for a state-of-the-art security system that would link bars and nightclubs throughout Vancouver’s downtown area have been put on hold.” The “new system would link individual security systems digitally so that information on unruly patrons could be shared from one establishment to another,” and that already, “Many bars on and around Granville scan patrons’ IDs and take their picture upon entrance.” Further, “According to a City of Vancouver administrative report, the mandate for ID scanners in bars originated in a May 2003 agreement between BarWatch and the Vancouver Police Department.”13

In 2007, it was reported that, “IndigoVision has won a prestigious contract for TransLink in Vancouver, Canada to upgrade the 880 camera CCTV system on SkyTrain, the world’s largest automated light rapid transit system.”14 An area adjacent to the metropolitan Vancouver area, Langley, was reported to be considering installing CCTV [Closed Circuit Television] at a bus loop.15 Another article reported that, “A San Diego company is meeting with TransLink officials in Vancouver today to present new anti-terrorist technology, including bomb-sniffing ticket machines,” and that the company, Cubic, “developed a system that detects traces of explosives on the hands of transit users.” Further, Cubic’s Vice President stated, “there is enough time to install the anti-terrorist system on the Canada Line before the Vancouver 2010 Olympics,” and that, “He said Cubic developed the explosives-detecting machines in 2004 and tested them in Baltimore the following summer with the U.S. Department of Homeland Security.”16

Another Province article began by asking, “Will video surveillance cameras outnumber TV cameras at the 2010 Olympic Games?” Some of the “pervasive” and “sophisticated” technology that can be expected to be seen at the Olympics include, “Computers [that] can be used to hook up videos with facial recognition software, information from social networking sites and even data gleaned from hotel bookings,” and the article quoted a University of Victoria professor as stating, “mega-events like the 2010 Olympics attract extensive security measures that remain in place afterwards.”17

In preparation for the Olympics, the RCMP has created the Vancouver 2010 Integrated Security Unit (ISU), which is responsible for security during the Olympics and “is led by the RCMP and consists of members of the RCMP, Vancouver Police Department, West Vancouver Police Department and the Canadian Forces.”18

In 2005, CBC reported that during the run-up to the Canadian elections, “Conservative Leader Stephen Harper was back on the campaign trail this week, promising to beef up military presence in major cities to respond to emergencies,” and that, “If he’s elected Jan. 23, Harper said, territorial battalions made up of 100 regular troops and 400 or more reservists would be stationed in Vancouver, Calgary, Regina, Winnipeg, the Toronto area and other major metropolitan areas.” Further, Harper also “said Canada currently does not have the capacity to respond to crises in its own back yard, especially in British Columbia.”19

The Province reported in 2008 that, “Some 267 people have died in police custody or in police-involved deaths in B.C. from 1992 to 2007, with 53 involving Vancouver police,” and that, “Of the 267 deaths, 28 are listed as “First Nations,” which Ward points out is more than 10 per cent of the total, although aboriginals form less than four per cent of the B.C. population.”20

The Vancouver Sun reported on internal documents which revealed that, “Vancouver police regularly use Tasers to subdue people who are unarmed and non-violent, according to internal reports released by the force,” and the “VPD [Vancouver Police Department] published on its website details of the about 150 times officers drew their Tasers from 2002 to early 2007.” The internal documents further revealed that, “in a number of cases, police used the Taser as soon as someone displayed a ‘fighting stance’ or simply to get a non-violent suspect to do what they were told.”21

There is the now-infamous case of Robert Dziekanski, a Polish immigrant, who was “Dazed and confused after more than 15 hours of travel, unable to communicate in English and scared because he couldn’t find his mother,” and then was subsequently “jolted by a taser just 24 seconds after being confronted by police in Vancouver International Airport,” then he was tasered again, and ultimately he was killed.22

North American Homeland Security Integration:

After September 11, 2001, the Bush administration created the Department of Homeland Security in 2003, and in December of 2003, “Prime Minister Paul Martin announced the creation of the Public Safety and Emergency Preparedness Portfolio under the purview of the Deputy Prime Minister and Minister of Public Safety and Emergency Preparedness Canada (PSEPC).” This department includes “the RCMP, CSIS [Canadian Security Intelligence Services], National Parole Board, Canada Firearms Centre, Correctional Service of Canada, and the Canada Border Services Agency. It also comprises three review Agencies: the RCMP External Review Committee; the Office of Correctional Investigator; and the Commission for Public Complaints against the RCMP.”23 In effect, it is centralizing control over a wide range of departments. Also interesting to note is that the RCMP will report to the same individual as the Commission for Public Complaints against the RCMP. But I’m sure that’s not a conflict of interest.

In January of 2005, the CBC reported that, “A Vancouver man has won an out-of-court settlement from the RCMP after an incident in which he says he was illegally searched by an American police officer.” The incident occurred when “David Laing was driving on a highway near Hope, B.C., when he was pulled over by a man with a heavy Texas accent,” who then told Laing that “it was a British Columbia road check. And he asked [Laing] for [his] driver’s licence and [his] vehicle registration.” The article quoted Laing as saying, “I’m being pulled over and given directions by an American who won’t identify himself.” It just so happened that Laing was also a police officer in Vancouver, and so he “refused to let the officers search his car. Under Canadian law, police officers don’t have the right to perform that kind of search.” The CBC further reported that, “The American was a Texas state trooper working with a member of the Hope detachment of the RCMP.” After giving Laing a ticket for having two different addresses for his insurance and registration, “a different RCMP officer and Texas trooper stopped his car, decided he was driving under the influence of marijuana, and searched his vehicle and two-year-old son,” and “The police found no drugs and despite saying he was impaired just moments earlier, let him go.”24

The report then went on to explain that “The Texas state troopers were in B.C. as part of an exchange program with the RCMP to spot and stop drug traffickers. Called Pipeline Convoy, the program involves training officers to detect people who are lying or trying to hide things from police.” Further, “The RCMP settled with Laing out of court when he threatened to sue for unlawful detention. But the Mounties defend the search, saying Laing looked suspicious because his eyelashes were fluttering and his eyes were flashing.” The BC Civil Liberties Association stated that, “Laing’s case presents a series of concerns – from using unreliable profiling techniques to a wrongful vehicle search, not to mention using an American police officer to pull over Canadians.”

On October 5, 2006, the CBC reported that, “Public Safety Minister Stockwell Day acknowledged Thursday that U.S. agents conduct investigations in Canada but said all are done according to Canadian law.” Elaborating, “Day was responding to a report regarding an internal FBI audit that shows U.S. agents are carrying out investigations without the approval of the Canadian government.” The internal FBI audit “says the FBI has given agents in its Buffalo field office clearance to conduct “routine investigations” up to 50 miles into Canadian territory.” Further, “The most recent audit by the Federal Bureau of Investigation’s inspector general, done in 2004, documents the growth of FBI operations in Canada since 2001.” The article continued, “As well as the reference to “routine investigations” inside Canadian territory it also says that about 30 per cent of FBI agents crossing the border to work in Canada failed to get ‘country clearance.’ In other words, they didn’t get Canada’s approval,” and “The inspector general’s report documents 135 unapproved FBI crossings and says there is no sign the crossings will stop.”25 It’s especially interesting to note that the FBI is a domestic agency, meaning that it is to operate within the US, not outside. Unless, of course, the FBI now sees Canada as within its domestic mandate. But not to worry, after all, Stockwell Day said it was legal. Although, he failed to identify what law is being obeyed by having foreign agents sneak across our border, without government approval (or knowledge) on unspecified and largely unknown missions. If that’s considered legal, Stockwell Day can be considered a Canadian patriot, upholding the rule of law and preserving and protecting the freedoms and rights of all Canadian citizens. Neither seem very plausible to me.

An RCMP press release in 2006 reported that, “To effectively combat cross-border criminal activity, Canadian and American law enforcement are taking an international and integrated approach to their investigations.” This culminates in what they call, “Integrated Border Enforcement Teams (IBETs),” which comprise “the Royal Canadian Mounted Police (RCMP), the Canada Border Services Agency (CBSA), the United States Customs and Border Protection/ Office of the Border Patrol (CBP/OBP), the United States Department of Homeland Security Immigration and Customs Enforcement (ICE), and the United States Coast Guard (USCG).” Further, “IBET agencies share information and work together daily with other local, state and provincial law enforcement agencies on issues relating to national security, organized crime and other criminality transiting the Canada/US border between the official Ports of Entry.”26

North American Military Integration:

As the civil “security” departments were being formed at the same time in Canada and the US, to allow for a smooth process of centralization and integration, the military aspects of Canada and the US were being formed, as “on 17 April 2002, Secretary of Defense Donald Rumsfeld announced that the American Unified Command Plan (UCP) was being updated to include a new regional command – Northern Command (NorthCom).” NorthCom “was given responsibility for the continental United States, Canada, Mexico, portions of the Caribbean and the contiguous waters in the Atlantic and Pacific oceans up to 500 miles off the North American coastline.” Though Mexico did not sign on to NorthCom, Donald Rumsfeld boasted that it has “all of North America as its geographic command.”27

On May 6, 2002, a speech was delivered to senior military officials in Canada’s Department of National Defence titled, “Canada-U.S. Defence Relations, Asymmetric Threats And The U.S. Unified Command Plan,” in which it was stated that after 9/11, “both countries decided to create a Great-Lakes/Saint Lawrence Seaway Cross Border Task Force. The aim of this Task Force is to target illicit traffic of people and goods across the maritime sector of the Northern Border. Agencies involved in this Task Force are numerous (DoD, USCG, FBI, Justice State, US Customs, the Canadian Coast Guard, RCMP, the Ontario and Quebec Provincial Police, CF Navy, DFAIT, etc.).” It was further stated that, “NORTHCOM’s area of interest will be North America, including Mexico, the Continental US and Canada, with a 500 nautical mile air and maritime zone of responsibility.”28

In 2006, the Bi-National Planning Group (BPG) released its final report, in which they states, “The Bi-National Planning Group (BPG) was established in December 2002 through an exchange of Diplomatic Notes on enhanced military cooperation between the Governments of Canada and the United States.” The Bi-National Planning Group’s “mandate covered a critical period in the evolving defense and security relationship of the United States and Canada, a time during which both countries responded to the new threat environment after the terrorist attacks of September 11, 2001.” It further states that, “It conducted reviews of existing Canada-U.S. defense plans and military assistance protocols; drafted new bi-national contingency plans to respond to threats, attacks and other major emergencies in Canada or the U.S.; analyzed information sharing practices; designed and participated in exercises and joint training; and established coordination mechanisms with relevant Canadian and U.S. Federal departments and agencies.”29

The report states that, “The goal should be to achieve the level (although not necessarily the form) of cooperation that now exists in NORAD in all other domains. [Emphasis added]” It calls for a Canada-US “Comprehensive Defense and Security Agreement” which would include, among other things, “Development of deliberate plans for the joint and combined defense and security of North America as well as bi-national civil support; Conduct of seamless bi-national information sharing; Conduct of joint and combined training and exercises; [and] Development of coordination mechanisms, including agreements among the military stakeholders and the homeland security and foreign policy communities.”30

It later states as a recommendation, “With respect to the movement of Canadian and US military personnel across the border for military operations, including military-to-military support to civil authorities, Foreign Affairs Canada, US Department of State, Canada Command, US Northern Command, border agencies and other appropriate military and civil entities should work together to ensure processes are in place to fully address cross-border movement legal issues prior to deployment.”31

It was reported by The Vancouver Sun on February 23, 2008, that, “Canada and the U.S. have signed an agreement that paves the way for the militaries from either nation to send troops across each other’s borders during an emergency, but some are questioning why the Harper government has kept silent on the deal.” Further, “Neither the Canadian government nor the Canadian Forces announced the new agreement, which was signed Feb. 14 in Texas,” but, “The U.S. military’s Northern Command, however, publicized the agreement with a statement outlining how its top officer, Gen. Gene Renuart, and Canadian Lt.-Gen. Marc Dumais, head of Canada Command, signed the plan, which allows the military from one nation to support the armed forces of the other nation in a civil emergency.” The article then quoted Canada Command spokesman, David Scanlon, as stating, “If U.S. forces were to come into Canada they would be under tactical control of the Canadian Forces but still under the command of the U.S. military.”32

This is a really amazing exercise in Orwellian double-speak, as he is saying that US forces in Canada would be under the tactical control of Canadian Forces, meaning under a degree of direction. Yet, at the same time, in the same sentence, he states that they will still be under the command of the US military. However, since the integration of Canada’s military structure with that of the US is so far advanced, with NORAD, NORTHCOM, the Bi-National Planning Group, etc., indeed there will be Canadian officials giving directions, as they are placed within the “integrated” military structures. But the structure itself is under command of the United States.

The Canadian Department of National Defence issued a press release regarding the Civil Assistance Plan mentioned above, which permits the use of Canadian and US militaries in each country, in which they quoted US Air Force General Gene Renuart as saying “This document is a unique, bilateral military plan to align our respective national military plans to respond quickly to the other nation’s requests for military support of civil authorities.” Canadian Air Force Lieutenant-General Marc Dumais, commander of Canada Command, was quoted as saying, “The signing of this plan is an important symbol of the already strong working relationship between Canada Command and US Northern Command.”33

Further, the same press release went on to report that, “The [Civil Assistance] plan recognizes the role of each nation’s lead federal agency for emergency preparedness, which in the US is the Department of Homeland Security and in Canada is Public Safety Canada. The plan facilitates the military-to-military support of civil authorities once government authorities have agreed on an appropriate response.” In other words, in the event of an emergency in Canada or the US, Homeland Security and Public Safety Canada would give directions of which the respective militaries would then enforce. In the event of an “incident” in Canada or the US, a North American Military-Security State will be firmly enshrined over our countries. But I guess that’s what George Bush means by “spreading Democracy”.

The press release went on, “US Northern Command was established on October 1, 2002, to anticipate and conduct homeland defence and civil support operations within the assigned area of responsibility [i.e., North America] to defend, protect, and secure the US and its interests [i.e., North America].” It is especially telling that NORTHCOM refers to all of North America as the US’ “interests”, whereas, as a Canadian, I was under the impression that Canada was the “interest” of Canadians. Further, “Canada Command was established on February 1, 2006, to focus on domestic operations and to offer a single point of contact for all domestic and continental defence and security partners.” The end of the press release notes that, “The two domestic commands established strong bilateral ties well before the signing of the Civil Assistance Plan. The two commanders and their staffs meet regularly, collaborate on contingency planning and participate in related annual exercises.”

North American Terror Drills:

A recent report on plans to practice a terrorist-response drill in Vancouver to be conducted by Mexico, Canada and the US in April of 2009, revealed that the drill will be “led by the U.S. Department of Homeland Security, [and] is code-named TOPOFF 5. Canadian troops were among the 15,000 participants involved in last October’s TOPOFF 4 in Portland, Ore., Phoenix, Ariz. and Guam.” Stockwell Day was quoted as saying, “Exercises provide unique training opportunities to strengthen our ability to deal with potential emergencies.” The article then went on to report, “An undated Public Safety Canada report said up to $22.8 million was needed to fund emergency management, counter-terrorism, cyber security and critical infrastructure protection exercises, ‘leading to a trilateral full-scale exercise prior to the Vancouver Olympic Games in 2010, as outlined under the Security and Prosperity Partnership’.” Chris Shaw of 2010 Watch was quoted as asking, “Does it mean that if the American forces are training with Canadian forces that they are going to be positioned here in Canada during the period of the Olympic Games?”34

According to Homeland Security’s website, “Top Officials (TOPOFF) is the nation’s premier terrorism preparedness exercise, involving top officials at every level of government, as well as representatives from the international community and private sector. Thousands of federal, state, territorial, and local officials engage in various activities as part of a robust, full-scale simulated response to a multi-faceted threat.” The first TOPOFF exercise was conducted in May of 2000, and since Homeland Security did not exist then, it was conducted by “the Department of Justice, the Department of State, and the Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA),” and “The primary goal of the exercise was to improve the capability of government officials and agencies, both within the United States and abroad to provide an effective, coordinated, and strategic response to a terrorist attack.” TOPOFF 2, conducted in May of 2003, was led by Homeland Security, in which “Participants in Seattle faced a simulated radiological dispersal device (RDD) attack, while those in the Chicago faced a biological attack.” Further, “The exercise engaged 8,500 responders and top officials from the United States and Canada – the first international partner to participate.”35

TOPOFF 3, conducted in April of 2005, continued to evolve and included an increased focus on bolstering international and private sector participation, terrorism prevention activities, risk communication and public information functions, and long-term recovery and remediation issues.” This exercise included “Over 10,000 participants, including responders and officials from Canada and the United Kingdom, [who] responded to a simulated chemical attack in New London, Conn., and a biological attack in the state of New Jersey.” TOPOFF 4, conducted in October of 2007, in Portland, Oregon, Phoenix, Arizona and the US territory in Guam, as well as with individuals in Washington D.C., “built on past lessons learned while adding new goals, including: an increased level of coordination with U.S. Department of Defense exercises to combat global terrorism, closer cooperation with the private sector, an expanded emphasis on prevention, a deeper focus on mass decontamination and long-term recovery and remediation issues.” It included the participation of “the governments of Australia, Canada, and the United Kingdom.”

TOPOFF 4 was the “biggest terrorism exercise ever staged nationally,” which started with “a fictional “bang” from an imaginary “dirty bomb” to test the emergency response of local, state and federal agencies.” A local Portland news outlet reported that, “The scenario also features simulated dirty bomb attacks in Arizona and Guam to evaluate the ability of federal agencies to manage multiple sites and will involve officials from the top levels of government, including the Defense and Homeland Security departments.”36

Terror Drills in a “War on Terror” Context:

Why are drills and war games so important to discuss? The answer lies in the precedent of the events that have occurred in conjunction with drills and war games in the past. According to Cooperative Research, at 6:30 in the morning on September 11, 2001, NORAD began conducting a drill called Vigilant Guardian, which was “an exercise that would pose an imaginary crisis to North American Air Defense outposts nationwide.” An emergency drill was scheduled at 8:00 am in the WTC South Tower on the 97th floor. Another exercise called Global Guardian, was being conducted by the US military and was based around the premise of a nuclear war. Before 9:00 am, New York’s Office of Emergency Management, whose offices were in WTC Building 7, the third building that collapsed into its own footprint on 9/11 (and wasn’t hit by a plane). The exercise was to be conducted with FEMA (Federal Emergency Management Agency), and the exercise was based around a biological terror attack in New York City. The National Reconnaissance Office (NRO), whose personnel were drawn from the CIA, had scheduled an emergency exercise for 9 am in which a plane was crashed into a government building. There were many other exercises and dozens leading up to 9/11, which revolved around events eerily like those that occurred on 9/11. The war games and drills also served to confuse all the honest government employees who reportedly thought that the events they were seeing take place were actually part of the exercises.37 Because of all of these drills and war games, the United States defenses weren’t able to respond to the attacks with normal procedures, and therefore helped facilitate the attacks.

On July 7, 2005, during the 7/7 London bombings of three subway trains and a double-decker bus, Peter Power, a director of Visor Consultants reported to BBC that, “At half past nine this morning we were actually running an exercise for a company of over a thousand people in London based on simultaneous bombs going off precisely at the railway stations where it happened this morning, so I still have the hairs on the back of my neck standing up right now.”38

It is important to monitor military drills and war games because they can often be used as a cover for the actual events taking place. In this context, the TOPOFF exercise that will take place in Vancouver in April of 2009 must be subjected to closer scrutiny and the government must reveal more details of their “exercise”.

Terror, “Deep Integration” and Martial Law:

Terrorism and the process of “deep integration” of Canada, the US and Mexico are not unrelated and separate concepts. In fact, there is a very close relationship between the two. On February 12, 2008, the Financial Post ran an op-ed in which the author stated, “The crisis of Sept. 11, 2001, provided a perfect opportunity to seize the moment to re-imagine the border,” and pursue a process of deeper integration between Canada and the United States.39

Robert Pastor, an American academic who was one of the lead authors of the “Building a North American Community” report, and one of the principal individuals driving the process towards further integration, told a Spanish-language magazine that, “The 9/11 crisis made Canada and the United States redefine the protection of their borders,” and that, “What I’m saying is that a crisis is an event which can force democratic governments to make difficult decisions like those that will be required to create a North American Community.” Elaborating, he stated, “It’s not that I want another 9/11 crisis, but having a crisis would force decisions that otherwise might not get made.”40

On December 1, 2002, the Washington Post reported that, “The Bush administration is developing a parallel legal system in which terrorism suspects — U.S. citizens and noncitizens alike — may be investigated, jailed, interrogated, tried and punished without legal protections guaranteed by the ordinary system.” The article explained that this “parallel” legal system would include, “indefinite military detention for those designated “enemy combatants,” liberal use of “material witness” warrants, counterintelligence-style wiretaps and searches led by law enforcement officials and, for noncitizens, trial by military commissions or deportation after strictly closed hearings.”41

In 2003, the Washington Post reported that, “A federal appeals court today ruled that the government has properly detained an American-born man captured with Taliban forces in Afghanistan without an attorney and has legally declared him an enemy combatant.”42 The Post then reported in 2005 that, “A federal appeals court yesterday backed the president’s power to indefinitely detain a U.S. citizen captured on U.S. soil without any criminal charges,” and that, “such power is essential to preventing terrorist strikes.”43

Commenting on the Military Commissions Act of 2006, Yale law and political science professor Bruce Ackerman wrote in the Los Angeles Times that the legislation “authorizes the president to seize American citizens as enemy combatants, even if they have never left the United States. And once thrown into military prison, they cannot expect a trial by their peers or any other of the normal protections of the Bill of Rights.” Further, it states that the legislation “grants the president enormous power over citizens and legal residents. They can be designated as enemy combatants if they have contributed money to a Middle Eastern charity, and they can be held indefinitely in a military prison.” Not only that, but, “ordinary Americans would be required to defend themselves before a military tribunal without the constitutional guarantees provided in criminal trials.” Startlingly, “Legal residents who aren’t citizens are treated even more harshly. The bill entirely cuts off their access to federal habeas corpus, leaving them at the mercy of the president’s suspicions.”44

Senator Patrick Leahey made a statement on February 2007 in which he discussed the John Warner Defense Authorization Act of 2007, saying:

Last year, Congress quietly made it easier for this President or any President to declare martial law. That’s right: In legislation added at the Administration’s request to last year’s massive Defense Authorization Bill, it has now become easier to bypass longtime posse comitatus restrictions that prevent the federal government’s use of the military, including a federalized National Guard, to perform domestic law enforcement duties.

He added that, “posse comitatus [is] the legal doctrine that bars the use of the military for law enforcement directed at the American people here at home.” The Bill is an amendment to the Insurrection Act, of which Leahey further commented, “When the Insurrection Act is invoked, the President can — without the consent of the respective governors — federalize the National Guard and use it, along with the entire military, to carry out law enforcement duties,” and that, “this is a sweeping grant of authority to the President.” Also, “In addition to the cases of insurrection, the Act can now be invoked to restore public order after a terrorist attack, a natural disaster, a disease outbreak, or — and this is extremely broad — ‘other condition’.”45

Given that the press release for the Orwellian-titled “Civil Assistance Plan” stated that the commanders of NORTHCOM and Canada Command, the two signatories to the “Assistance” Plan, both “collaborate on contingency planning” on a “regular” basis, it is necessary to take a closer look at such “contingency” plans. On May 9, 2007, the White House issued a press release about the National Security Presidential Directive (NSPD) 51, also known as the “National Security and Homeland Security Presidential Directive.” This directive:

[P]rescribes continuity requirements for all executive departments and agencies, and provides guidance for State, local, territorial, and tribal governments, and private sector organizations in order to ensure a comprehensive and integrated national continuity program that will enhance the credibility of our national security posture and enable a more rapid and effective response to and recovery from a national emergency.

The document defines “catastrophic emergency” as, “any incident, regardless of location, that results in extraordinary levels of mass casualties, damage, or disruption severely affecting the U.S. population, infrastructure, environment, economy, or government functions.” It explains “Continuity of Government” (COG), as “a coordinated effort within the Federal Government’s executive branch to ensure that National Essential Functions continue to be performed during a Catastrophic Emergency.” Further, this directive states that, “The President shall lead the activities of the Federal Government for ensuring constitutional government. In order to advise and assist the President in that function, the Assistant to the President for Homeland Security and Counterterrorism (APHS/CT) is hereby designated as the National Continuity Coordinator.”46 So essentially, in time of a “catastrophic emergency”, the President, whomever that may be, takes over total control of the executive, legislative and judicial branches of government in order to secure “continuity”. In essence, the Presidency would become an “Executive Dictatorship”.

The Oregonian reported in 2007 that Oregon Congressman Peter DeFazio, as a member of the Homeland Security Committee, asked the White House to see secret documents related to NSPD 51 that were not released in the press statement, and he was denied “the right of reviewing how [the White House] plan to conduct the government of the United States after a significant terrorist attack.”47

The San Francisco Chronicle reported on February 4, 2008, that, “Beginning in 1999, the government has entered into a series of single-bid contracts with Halliburton subsidiary Kellogg, Brown and Root (KBR) to build detention camps at undisclosed locations within the United States. The government has also contracted with several companies to build thousands of railcars, some reportedly equipped with shackles, ostensibly to transport detainees.” Further, “the KBR contract is part of a Homeland Security plan titled ENDGAME, which sets as its goal the removal of ‘all removable aliens’ and ‘potential terrorists’.”48

KBR, once a subsidiary of Dick Cheney’s former company, Halliburton, has been involved with and related to many very nefarious events in recent history, including the Rwandan genocide, Congo civil war, NATO wars on Bosnia and Kosovo, the wars in Afghanistan and Iraq, and even getting the contract to build attachments to the Guantanamo prison camp. KBR’s contract from Homeland Security was revealed in a press release which stated the contract, “provides for establishing temporary detention and processing capabilities to augment existing ICE Detention and Removal Operations (DRO) Program facilities in the event of an emergency influx of immigrants into the U.S., or to support the rapid development of new programs,” and that, “The contract may also provide migrant detention support to other U.S. Government organizations in the event of an immigration emergency, as well as the development of a plan to react to a national emergency, such as a natural disaster.”49

Given the close relationship between the events of 9/11 and the speeding up of North American integration, it is very significant that much of the integration is focused around military responses to “catastrophic emergencies”, which would undoubtedly further accelerate the process of integration. However, given the laws, contracts and directives put in place by the US, in the event of a “catastrophic emergency”, any vestige of democratic institutions in North America would cease to exist.

Concluding Remarks

Vancouver in 2010 will be a very interesting time. Terror drills will be conducted in Vancouver in April of 2009 in preparation for the Olympics, as Vancouver turns itself into a police state while the military and security structures of Canada and the United States are merged together to form a North American Military-Security State, all under the auspices of the Security and Prosperity Partnership of North America (SPP). Laws such as the Military Commissions Act and Defense Authorization Act are reason enough for Canada to not merge with the United States on this level, but when taking into account NSPD 51 (National Security Presidential Directive 51) for “Continuity of Government” and the contracts for KBR to build “detention camps”, it is, in fact, in Canada’s national security interests to immediately cease and undo what integration has already been undertaken.

Much like how China’s emergence into the modern world community is to be marked by their 2008 Olympics, the 2010 Olympics in Vancouver will not mark Canada’s show of pride in the world, but will mark the coronation of the North American “Community”, eventually to become a Union. I use the word “coronation” deliberately, as a coronation is a ceremony upon where a monarch is given regal powers and the crown is placed on their head. Given the structure that is being set up for the North American “Community”, the amount of power being taken away from the people of North America and into the hands of a few out-of-control elites makes the comparison apt to placing the crown upon a monarch.

It’s a sad state of affairs when one loses their freedoms and rights, not through a valiant fight to keep them, but through secret agreements, quiet discussions, deceitful laws and worst of all, mass apathy on the part of the public. It’s time to speak up, speak loud, and take our countries back while we still have what remains of them, and most importantly, while we still have the freedom to speak.

NOTES

1 CFR, Building a North American Community. Independent Task Force on the Future of North America: May 2005, page 17: http://www.cfr.org/publication/8102/

2
SPP, Security Priorities. Report to Leaders: August 2006, page 27:

http://www.spp-psp.gc.ca/progress/reports-en.aspx

3 Bob Mackin, Three Amigos at 2010 Winter Olympics? 24 Hours: March 5, 2008: http://vancouver.24hrs.ca/News/2008/03/05/4909016-sun.html

4 Office of the Prime Minister, The Honourable David Emerson. August 14, 2007: http://pm.gc.ca/eng/bio.asp?id=4

5 CCCE, Paul Martin Urged to Take the Lead in Forging a New Vision for North American Cooperation. North American Security and Prosperity: November 5, 2003: http://www.ceocouncil.ca/en/view/?document_id=38

6 Charlie Smith, 2010: It’s the terror, stupid. The Georgia Straight: August 11, 2005:

http://www.straight.com/article/2010-its-the-terror-stupid

7 Kevin Potvin, Police state looms as Vancouver engages in the War on Terror. The Republic of East Vancouver: May 25 to June 7, 2006, Issue 139: http://www.republic-news.org/archive/139-repub/139_kevin_potvin_police.htm

8 John Colebourn, Cops pushing for Granville Mall cameras. The Province: November 8, 2006:
http://www.canada.com/theprovince/

9 Todd Battis, Vancouver eyes surveillance cams to deter drunks. CTV News: November 12, 2006: http://www.ctv.ca/servlet/ArticleNews/story/

10 Chad Skelton, 1 in 50 drivers ‘commits crime’ on roads. The Vancouver Sun: November 9, 2006:
http://www.canada.com/vancouversun/news/

11 VPSN, Surveillance. Vancouver Public Space Network:
http://vancouverpublicspace.ca/index.php/campaigns/surveillance

12
Carlito Pablo, CCTV coming to a bus in your neighbourhood. The Georgia Straight: July 26, 2007:
http://www.straight.com/article-102933/cctv-coming-to-a-bus-in-your-neighbourhood

13 Travis Lupick, Big Brother Bar Hops. The Georgia Straight: July 19, 2007: http://www.straight.com/article-102067/big-brother-bar-hops

14 IndigoVision, Vancouver’s SkyTrain to Use IndigoVision’s Surveillance Technology. SecurityInfoWatch.com: January 24, 2007: http://www.securityinfowatch.com/article/article.jsp?id=10376&siteSection=385

15 Matthew Claxton, Bus loop camera pondered. Langley Advance: January 29, 2008:
http://www.canada.com/langleyadvance/

16 Damian Inwood, Bomb-detecting technology knocks on TransLink’s door. The Province: February 8, 2008:
http://www.canada.com/theprovince/

17 Kent Spencer, 2010 Winter Olympics’ security cameras to be studied. The Province: February 26, 2008:
http://www.canada.com/theprovince/

18 RCMP, Vancouver 2010 Integrated Security Unit. RCMP in BC:

http://bc.rcmp.ca/ViewPage.action?contentId=235&siteNodeId=51

19 CBC, Harper pledges to boost military presence in cities. CBC News: December 28, 2005:
http://www.cbc.ca/news/story/2005/12/28/harper-military051228.html

20 Suzanne Fournier, 267 cop-related deaths in B.C. over past 15 years. The Province: January 25, 2008:
http://www.canada.com/theprovince/

21 Chad Skelton, Police say they use Tasers on non-violent people. The Vancouver Sun: March 8, 2008:
http://www.canada.com/vancouversun/news/westcoastnews/
story.html?id=35f7b04b-953f-44dd-8001-29708d1c59c3&k=84373

22 Mark Hume and Sunny Dhillon, Questions hang over taser death. The Globe and Mail: October 26, 2007: http://www.theglobeandmail.com/

23 Public Safety Canada, Public Safety and Emergency Preparedness Canada: Year One. Archive: December 13, 2004:
http://ww2.ps-sp.gc.ca/publications/news/2004/20041213_e.asp

24 CBC News, Cop wins RCMP settlement after highway search. CBC: January 28, 2005: http://www.cbc.ca/canada/story/2005/01/28/texas-bc050128.html

25 CBC News, U.S. investigations on Canadian soil done within the law: Day. CBC: October 5, 2006:
http://www.cbc.ca/canada/story/2006/10/05/fbi-border.html

26 RCMP, Integrated Border Enforcement Teams (IBETs) 2006 Joint Cross-Border Operations. RCMP: August 23, 2006:

http://www.rcmp-grc.gc.ca/security/ibets_success_e.htm

27 Philippe Lagassé, NORAD, NorthCom, and the Binational Planning Group: The Evolution of Canada–US Defence Relations – Part 1. CASR: July 2003:

http://www.sfu.ca/casr/ft-lagasse1.htm

28 DND, Canada-U.S. Defence Relations, Asymmetric Threats And The U.S. Unified Command Plan. Speeches: May 6, 2002: http://www.forces.gc.ca/site/newsroom/view_news_e.asp?id=1004

29 BPG, The Final Report on Canada and the United States (CANUS) Enhanced Military Cooperation. Bi-National Planning Group: March 13, 2006, page 3:

www.hsdec.org/downloads/BPG%20Final%20Report%20signed%2006-03-13+.pdf

30 BPG, The Final Report on Canada and the United States (CANUS) Enhanced Military Cooperation. Bi-National Planning Group: March 13, 2006, page 5:

www.hsdec.org/downloads/BPG%20Final%20Report%20signed%2006-03-13+.pdf

31 BPG, The Final Report on Canada and the United States (CANUS) Enhanced Military Cooperation. Bi-National Planning Group: March 13, 2006, page 39:

www.hsdec.org/downloads/BPG%20Final%20Report%20signed%200603-13+.pdf

32 David Pugliese, Canada-U.S. pact allows cross-border military activity. The Vancouver Sun: February 23, 2008:
http://www.canada.com/vancouversun/

33 National Defence, New Bilateral Civil Assistance Plan established. Canadian Department of National Defense: February 26, 2008:

http://www.dnd.ca/site/community/mapleleaf/article_e.asp?id=4175

34
Bob Mackin, Three Amigos at 2010 Winter Olympics? 24 Hours: March 5, 2008: http://vancouver.24hrs.ca/News/2008/03/05/4909016-sun.html

35 Homeland Security, TOPOFF: Exercising National Preparedness. TOPOFF: February 21, 2008: http://www.dhs.gov/xprepresp/training/gc_1179350946764.shtm

36 Eileen Sullivan, ‘Dirty bomb’ terror exercise set for Portland. KGW: October 4, 2007: http://www.kgw.com/news-local/

37 Cooperative Research, Military Exercises Up to 9/11. Complete 9/11 Timeline:
http://www.cooperativeresearch.org/

38 Michel Chossudovsky, 7/7 Mock Terror Drill: What Relationship to the Real Time Terror Attacks? Global Research: August 8, 2005:
http://www.globalresearch.ca/index.php?context=viewArticle&code=20050808&articleId=821

39 Michael Hart, Canada Blew It. The Financial Post: February 12, 2008:

http://www.nationalpost.com/opinion/story.html?id=302151

40 WND, North American Union leader says merger just crisis away. World Net Daily: December 15, 2006:
http://www.worldnetdaily.com/news/article.asp?ARTICLE_ID=53378

41 Charles Lane, In Terror War, 2nd Track for Suspects. Washington Post: December 1, 2002:
http://www.washingtonpost.com/

42 Tom Jackman, Court: U.S. Can Hold Citizens as Enemy Combatants. Washington Post: January 8, 2003:
http://www.prisonplanet.com/court_us_can_hold_citizens_as_enemy_combatants.html

43 Jerry Markon, U.S. Can Confine Citizens Without Charges, Court Rules Washington Post: September 10, 2005:
http://www.washingtonpost.com/wp-dyn/content/article/2005/09/09/AR2005090900772.html

44 Bruce Ackerman, The White House Warden. Los Angeles Times: September 28, 2006:
http://www.law.yale.edu/news/3531.htm

45
Patrick Leahy, Statement Of Sen. Patrick Leahy On Legislation To Repeal Changes To The Insurrection Act. February 7, 2007:
http://leahy.senate.gov/press/200702/020707.html

46
The White House, National Security and Homeland Security Presidential Directive. Office of the Press Secretary: May 9, 2007:

http://www.whitehouse.gov/news/releases/2007/05/20070509-12.html

47
Jeff Kosseff, DeFazio Asks, But He’s Denied Access. The Oregonian: July 21, 2007:

http://www.commondreams.org/archive/2007/07/21/2678/

48 Lewis Seiler and Dan Hamburg, Rule by Fear or Rule by Law? The San Francisco Chronicle: February 8, 2008:

Rule by fear or rule by law? By Lewis Seiler & Dan Hamburg

49 KBR, KBR Awarded U.S. Department of Homeland Security Contingency Support Project for Emergency Support Services. Press Releases: 2006 Archive, January 24, 2006: http://www.kbr.com/news/2006/govnews_060124.aspx

see

SPP: Security & prosperity for whom? by Andrew Marshall

The Deployment of US Troops inside Canada by Michel Chossudovsky

Martial Law, Inc. – KBR: A Halliburton Subsidiary by Andrew G. Marshall

The North American Union Farce

Agenda for the North American Summit by Andrew G. Marshall

9/11: The “Perfect Opportunity” for North American Integration by Andrew G. Marshall

Rule by fear or rule by law? By Lewis Seiler & Dan Hamburg

Dangerous Crossroads: US Sponsored War Games by Prof. Michel Chossudovsky

The Military Drills of September 11th: Why a New Investigation is Needed by Elizabeth Woodworth

Bush Declares Himself Dictator – Presidential Directive 51 (May 2007; video link)

Bush Directive for a “Catastrophic Emergency” in America by Prof. Michel Chossudovsky (Iran)

Bush Pens Dictatorship Directive, Few Notice by Kurt Nimmo

National Security & Homeland Security Presidential Directive 51 (2007)

Bush To Be Dictator In A Catastrophic Emergency by Lee Rogers (Martial Law; Police State)

NAU North America Union

Marshall-Andrew G.

.

.

The Cult of the Suicide Bomber By Robert Fisk

Dandelion Salad

By Robert Fisk
ICH
03/14/08 “The Independent

Khaled looked at me with a broad smile. He was almost laughing. At one point, when I told him that he should abandon all thoughts of being a suicide bomber – that he could influence more people in this world by becoming a journalist – he put his head back and shot me a grin, world-weary for a man in his teens. “You have your mission,” he said. “And I have mine.” His sisters looked at him in awe. He was their hero, their amanuensis and their teacher, their representative and their soon-to-be-martyred brother. Yes, he was handsome, young – just 18 – he was dressed in a black Giorgio Armani T-shirt, a small, carefully trimmed Spanish conquistador’s beard, gelled hair. And he was ready to immolate himself.

Continue reading

Israel-Palestine Conflict: The Cycle Starts Again By Liam Bailey

Liam

By Liam Bailey
featured writer
Dandelion Salad

The Bailey Mail
March 15, 2008

2008-03-14 In my last article on the Israeli-Palestinian conflict I said that even if Hamas stopped firing rockets and Israel kept its word and stopped attacking Gaza, then before too long Israel would launch an arrest raid in the west bank and the calm would be destroyed. And that is almost exactly what has happened:The almost week long lull in violence, which even saw restraint by Israel despite the odd rocket has been ended by Israeli air-strikes, in response to rockets fired from Gaza by Islamic Jihad, in response to an Israeli rocket attack in the West Bank that killed 4 wanted militants, and the vicious cycle of violence begins all over again.

Recent events also back up the main claim of my last article, that Israel doesn’t want peace; Israel’s attack the started the latest wave of violence came just hours after Hamas leader Ismail Haniyeh announced their terms for a ceasefire: an end to Israeli attacks in the West Bank and Gaza, the reopening of border-crossings, an end to the Gaza siege, and a say in the control of their borders.

The last one would have never been agreed to by Israel, but in order to derail hopes of a truce they had to provoke fresh rocket attacks without attracting international condemnation, by international condemnation I mean U.S. condemnation, and how can the US condemn anyone for launching air-strikes against wanted “terrorists” when it has launched several in Somalia alone since 2006.

It’s worked like a charm, the cycle has begun again, and any talk of a truce has been pushed well into the sidelines.

Former deputy defence minister Ephraim Sneh said there could be no solution to the conflict “without the military wiping out Hamas”.

Israel will never wipe out Hamas, because every brutal attempt to do so, in which they kill far more civilians that Hamas militants only serves to do Hamas’ recruiting for them and ensure there are generation after generation of even more fanatical militants.

In a statement Thursday 13 Top UN Humanitarian Official John Holmes heavily criticized Israel’s sealing off the Gaza strip: “It’s not stopping the rockets, it’s not producing the desired political effects”, he said, adding that Israel’s belief that the blockade would generate resentment for Hamas was not “well founded”.

It’s all urinating into the wind though, with a few shining exceptions, the UN has been the most useless world body in the history of man. How can it hope to achieve anything when the world’s main powers, corrupted so by said power and caring about little more than furthering their own agendas can stop it from doing any good unless it coincides with what is good for them?

The UN will only do any good in the Israeli-Palestinian conflict if it obtains US support. This would at the same time mean that the US would have stopped unequivocally supporting Israel, which would then mean the conflict would have started costing Israel something that it cared about (money, and overall security) and Israel would suddenly adopt a more welcoming attitude to finding peace — until then the cycle will continue.

see

No Incentives for Israel to Find Peace By Liam Bailey

Threat of Iran War More Real: End the World for What? By Liam Bailey

Bailey-Liam

.

.

American Economy: Man The Life-Boats! (Part 1) by Josh Sidman

Josh

by Josh Sidman
Dandelion Salad
featured writer
Josh’s Blog Post
Mar. 15, 2008

The announcement today of Bear Stearns’ insolvency was not a small matter. In fact, I believe that when the history books are written, this event may be considered a key sign-post of the beginning-of-the-end. Yes, the Fed can crank up its magical printing presses and pour dollars on the flames, but there is in actuality very little that the monetary authorities can do to fix the problem. In the long-run, the only real effect of the Fed’s actions will be to further decimate the value of the dollar.

In October and November of last year, I advised readers to buy gold and the yen and to sell short the S&P and bank stocks. It was my opinion then (and continues to be now) that after years of economic over-indulgence (the scale of which was made possible only due to the dollar’s unique position as the world’s reserve currency) the wheels were finally falling off the US economy. In times like these, there is little that government or central banks can do to counter the tidal waves that are flowing through the economy. Assurances by President Bush and Fed Chairman Bernanke that we are unlikely to experience a recession are starting to sound tragic-comical. The question isn’t whether we’re in a recession, its whether we are going into a depression.

As I have done previously, I would like to offer a couple of “survival strategies” for those who agree with my analysis and wish to minimize the financial damage in the weeks and months ahead. Unfortunately, it is my belief that the current crisis is of a particularly tricky variety (often described as “stagflation”), which means that virtually all kinds of assets are at risk. In a typical business downturn, one can move money from stocks to bonds and feel relatively secure. Conversely, in an inflationary environment, money can be moved from bonds to stocks and precious metals. However, in a stagflationary environment, there are no safe-havens.

It has become very clear by now that the U.S. financial authorities are willing to throw the dollar to the wolves instead of running the risk of a deflation (i.e. a general fall of prices, which would in this case be led by falling real estate values). In all fairness to those in charge, this is not necessarily a terrible choice at this point. A deflationary scenario would be truly disastrous, given the level of indebtedness of American government, corporations, and individuals. (Keep in mind that deflation increases the burden of existing debts, while inflation reduces them.) And, since the whole world was so willing to enable the U.S. to spend like drunken sailors, maybe it is right and good that they should be made to bear some of the costs by seeing the value of their dollar-denominated investments plummet.

So, how can a person with a nest-egg (large or small) position him/herself so as to not be totally wiped out in the event of a dollar collapse?

Gold is an answer that has become increasingly popular lately. Gold is traditionally considered a last-resort store-of-value. If just a few percent of all of the money currently invested in stocks and bonds was to suddenly be reallocated to gold, it would require all of the gold in the entire world to fill the additional demand.

Of course, there is a risk-factor to investing in gold. The price of gold has risen from under $300/oz. to $1,000/oz. in the last several years. Anything that has risen that far and that fast could be vulnerable to significant corrections. If the “disaster scenario” that I am predicting does not come to pass, gold could potentially get whacked. But, if it does happen, I believe gold could go to $2,000, $3,000, or higher.

In addition, I believe there is a particularly attractive way to bet on gold at this point, due to the fact that the price of gold mining companies have lagged way behind the price of the physical metal. The economics of the gold mining industry are pretty straightforward. A mining company pays for labor, energy, etc. in order to get gold out of the ground and then sells the metal in the marketplace. The difference between the market price and the cost of mining the gold represents the profit (or loss) to the company. So, obviously, if the price of gold rises while the cost of mining doesn’t, the profitability of gold mining companies increases.

In addition, there is another element to the economics of the gold mining industry that is particularly compelling in the event of further appreciation of the metal – i.e. the principle of leverage. Consider the following hypothetical scenario. If it costs a mining company $500/oz. to bring gold to the market and the market price is $600/oz., the company will make a profit of $100/oz. Now, let’s look at what happens if the price of gold rises to $700/oz. This represents a 20% increase in the value of the metal, but look at what happens to the profitability of the mining company. If we assume that the cost structure of the company hasn’t changed, it still costs $500/oz. to bring gold to market, so instead of making a profit of $100/oz., the company will now make $200/oz. So, as a result of a 20% rise in the price of gold, the profitability of the mining company has risen by 100%.

So, while I hesitate to unreservedly recommend that investors buy gold right now, given that it has risen so much already, I do believe that gold mining stocks represent a huge opportunity. Since these stocks have not kept up with the price of the metal, there is both higher potential upside and lower downside in gold mining stocks than there is in the metal itself.

———-

In the second part of this piece, I will describe another, less conventional strategy for preserving wealth in the event of a dollar collapse. Stay tuned for American Economy: Man The Lifeboats! (Part 2)

see

Business

Federal Reserve

Economy

Sidman-Josh

.

.