Geo

Geo political and international politics

Feb 17 2015 MBTA Service Map! "Crippled" Boston mass transit system struggles as lines closed

Here is the service map for the Boston MBTA for Tuesday Feb 17 2015:

/// UPDATE Tues 12:15PM Redditors have provided more detail about what they are experiencing today. Summarized: Train is working on Orange Line at Ruggles. Red line is running to JFK. "the T isn't running at NeU or Symphony." Oak Grove to Sullivan should be textured (better). ///

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You may reuse the above image. License Creative Commons Sharealike w Attribution and if possible a tweet to @HongPong. Thanks!

This is based off mbta.com/winter info as of 10:30PM Feb 16 2015. Half the train cars are out of service right now, so active lines are very limited. Textured areas have some kind of "limited" or shuttle bus service. This is just an estimation and who knows if it will really happen this way.

With the exception of the Green Line D Riverside line, most of the older lines in the city have fared poorly and it has been estimated it will be 30 days (without snow) for full service to return. I think I will make a few of these maps during this transportation crisis.

Severe Weather Update - February 16-17, 2015

What to expect when winter weather hits.

As efforts continue to recover from weeks of severe winter weather, the MBTA is announcing it will provide a limited schedule of rail and bus service tomorrow, Tuesday, February 17, 2015.

Service will available on the Red Line from Alewife to Andrew Stations with limited substitute bus service on the Ashmont and Braintree branches. Trains between Alewife and Andrew are scheduled to arrive/depart about every six to seven minutes. Limited bus replacement service will be available between Braintree and Andrew and between Ashmont and Andrew.

Orange Line service will be available from Sullivan to Back Bay Stations with limited substitute bus service from Oak Grove to Sullivan Stations and from Back Bay to Forest Hills Stations. Trains between Sullivan and Back Bay are scheduled to arrive/depart every 12 minutes. Limited bus replacement service will be available between Oak Grove and Sullivan and between Forest Hills and Back Bay.

Green Line service will operate between Kenmore and Lechmere Stations with limited trolley service operating in both directions on the D branch. Trains between North Station and Kenmore will depart/arrive every five to six minutes.

Along the B branch, Route 57 buses will make stops between Packards Corner and Kenmore Stations. There will be no bus service between Packards Corner and Boston College.

Along the C branch, limited shuttle bus service will be available between Cleveland Circle and Kenmore.

Along the E branch, Route 39 buses will make stops between Northeastern and Heath St. Stations.

The Blue Line is serving all stations between Wonderland and Bowdoin. Trains will depart/arrive every seven to eight minutes.

Service remains suspended on the Mattapan Trolley Line. A limited bus replacement service will be available.

Commuter Rail will operate on a modified weekday schedule, but with significant delays and several canceled trips. Revised schedules are available below.

Buses, including the Silver Line, will operate on a weekday schedule with delays due to traffic and road conditions.

Please note that parking in MBTA garages will continue to be permitted, but availability may be limited. Lynn, Beverly, Salem, and Wonderland Garages will continue to have low availability. Additional parking availability information can be found here. Illegally parked vehicles in garages that are found to be blocking pedestrian access ways and/or traffic lanes will be subject to towing. Passengers are encouraged to park in garages only when leaving their vehicle on the premises overnight.

MBTA passengers may also park in available Massport parking at Suffolk Downs Station and board Massport employee shuttles either to Airport terminals or to the Blue Line Airport Station.

As always, the latest service information can be found at the MBTA's winter resource hub:mbta.com/winter. Customers are also urged to check T-Alerts regularly for updates or to join our 106,000 followers on Twitter @MBTA. For Commuter Rail updates, we ask commuters to follow the MBTA Commuter Rail on Twitter @MBTA_CR.

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Even the Vermont National Guard is involved in snow removal right now.

Background: The MBTA's long, winding, infuriating road to failure - Metro - The Boston Globe

MBTA may need 30 days to return to full service - Metro - The Boston Globe

Scott: MBTA service won't be fully restored for 30 days | Weather - WCVB Home

2012: What Exactly is the MBTA's 'Big Dig Debt'? | Boston Magazine ($5.2 billion!)

See also: Boston Using Prison Labor To Shovel Heaps Of Snow In Frigid Temperatures For Pennies | ThinkProgress

After another 16 inches of snow fell on the Boston area this weekend, bringing the city’s total snowfall for the past month up over seven feet, the beset city is turning to prison labor for help digging out.

A mixture of unionized city workers and state prison inmates worked to clear commuter rail tracks of snow on Monday in hopes of having trains running again when businesses reopen Tuesday after the President’s Day holiday. With air temperatures down in the single digits and wind chill values running below zero fahrenheit, the crews shoveled snow off of tracks and above-ground platforms at the Braintree station outside the city, a key outlying stop on the Massachusetts Bay Transit Authority’s (MBTA) red line.

Details of the prison labor system remain unclear as state corrections officials have not yet responded to requests for information. An MBTA spokesman confirmed to ThinkProgress that prisoners are assisting union workers but referred further questions to the state Department of Corrections.

The state has deployed inmates to shovel before, according to city Inspectional Services Department commissioner William Christopher, who said that two four-prisoner crews were sent out around the city earlier this month to clear paths to fire hydrants and shovel snow off handicapped access infrastructure. “The amount of snow that we got is record-setting and we’ve pulled out every resource from every possible way to clean this situation up,” Christopher said at the time. Further west, inmates in a community service program at a minimum-security prison have helped clear snow from other storms this winter, and as far back as 2011.

The MBTA’s turn to inmate labor likely means that the system’s contracts prohibit paying non-union members to do the work. The city is reportedly offering $30 an hour for union workers to shovel tracks, and supplementing those paid work crews with prisoners.

Also the politics of the MBTA transit system collapse (trains only operating in the tunnels today) vs new GOP Gov Charlie "No new taxes" Baker are super interesting to watch, because it's so blatantly clear MBTA is a cornerstone of the daily economy, now experiencing cascading failures on a daily/weekly basis.

I am amazed more people are not injured every day, it speaks to the skill and persistence of the tired union transit workers who poke away with shovels and picks at ice in the switches all these cold windy nights.

I don't know when it became acceptable to use the word "crippled" again since that seems to be on roughly the same perjorative word list as "retard". But all the news quotes today were centered on the word "crippled" anyway. I think "disabled" is the preferred nomenclature for technical systems. The "ableism" of the system is also pretty bad, even for people without major medical issues it is quite difficult to get around now.

Pipeline Politics: MNGOP moves fast for fossils; Minnesota Range Congressman Rick Nolan certain Keystone XL will "support" 42,000 jobs

A tough fight is brewing at both the state and federal level over the direction of environmental policies. In Minnesota, Republicans are totally committed to expanding fracked gas, shale oil from Bakken, and genocidal tar sands bitumen pipelines from Canada.

The Sandpiper pipeline project in Minnesota is the current major project with ongoing public hearings, opposition spearheaded by Friends of the Headwaters, the Carlton County Land Stewards, Winona LaDuke's Honor The Earth group has worked on this; MN350 has also been working on this. The PUC calendar has other date info..

Pipelines in the MN political economy: To capture the House in 2014, Minnesota Republicans leaned heavily on independent expenditures from the Minnesota Jobs Coalition, which in turn leaned heavily on Northern Oil & Gas Co., a shale oil finance shop in run by a colorful family in suburban Wayzata, to pay for it all.

The joke's on Northern (NOG): as the international oil price war has taken hold their stock plummeted, but if they're going to salvage any of this they need new pipelines more than ever.

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The MN House GOP isn't wasting any time fighting for their backers' needs. One of the first House bills posted in St Paul this year, HF21 would slash pipeline review to 150 days up or down - just enough time to get ahead of ticked off locals before they know what's going on.

Democrats are split over the pro-pipeline agenda in Minnesota, and the pro-industry crowd has a plan this year. The Iron Rangers are trying to wheel out "streamlining" mining regulations, willing to work with ALEC-friendly GOP. Key players here include DFL Sen. Tom Bakk, GOP Rep. Rod Hamilton for Big Ag (especially hog corporations) & the affable GOP Rep. Paul Garofalo for twitter-friendly ALEC corporate agendas.

For the top circles of people pushing this agenda, ideally environmental concerns will get flipped around — usually pollution affects poor people & people of color (POC) communities the worst — to make it appear a hobby of oblivious, elite metro consultant people. They are interested in reframing environmental justice as an elitist hobby, all the better to roll queasy and/or suburban Democrats.

Other corporate agendas: The industrial agriculture lobby wants to max out factory farm sizes with minimal oversight. Killing the Minnesota Pollution Control Agency's citizen review board system is another major priority, and disinfo is already rolling out on that topic.

They've also tried running meetings without public notice (see Rural Task Force and AURI in Sept 2014 via Bluestem Prairie) in order to reconfigure obscure government organizations to their agenda.

In this context we have to wonder what you're supposed to do when your member in Congress peddles blatantly deceptive spin (Nolan represents an area where a lot of my family is from). I will highlight some major chestnuts in bold. Source from a friend on FB:

Dear [Submitter].,

Thank you for contacting me regarding your views on the Keystone Pipeline project.

The simple truth we must deal with is that the Alberta tar sands are already being developed and producing roughly two million barrels of oil per day which are then shipped by truck and rail. Additionally, the U.S. State Department and the government of Canada have confirmed these tar sands will continue to be developed regardless of this project's approval. Therefore, those of us who care about saving the environment must ensure that the heavy crudes are transported in the safest and most environmentally sensitive way possible. Pipelines – while not immune from accidents – have been shown to be a safer energy transportation method than truck and rail, producing a lower carbon footprint and preventing further rail and highway congestion. The fact is, the State Department concluded alternative rail transportation options to move the heavy crude from the tar sands would result in the release of 28-42% more carbon emissions than through the pipeline.

Moreover, the Keystone project will provide access to additional oil reserves not subject to the ongoing turmoil in the Middle East, while supporting more than 42,000 good-paying jobs across our nation, translating to $2 billion in earnings for workers, substantial local and state tax revenue, and an additional $3.4 billion to our gross domestic product.

The Keystone XL Pipeline has been rigorously studied and will generate urgently needed jobs and economic development across our nation. To that end, I recently joined the majority of the House in voting to pass legislation (H.R.3) to move forward with the Keystone XL pipeline project. Unlike previous Keystone legislation I opposed in the past, this legislation requires that Keystone be compliant with all other existing EPA and other US federal agency requirements that would need to be met by a domestic pipeline application.

I am disappointed we were not permitted to amend the bill to require use of 100 percent American steel in construction because it is proven to be better and less accident prone. Nonetheless, this legislation puts an end to almost seven years of gridlock, requires the pipeline operators to comply with tough U.S. environmental protections, and allows for a route change in Nebraska that will avoid the environmentally sensitive Sandhills region.

Please know I have long been a strong supporter of the Environmental Protection Agency and the Clean Water Act, as well as other laws and regulations to protect our precious environment. To that end, during the 113th Congress I proudly cosponsored H.R.3674, the End Polluter Welfare Act of 2013 which would eliminate tax loopholes and subsidies that support the oil, gas and coal industries. Additionally, H.R.3674 would end taxpayer-funded fossil fuel research and prevent companies from escaping liability for spills or deducting cleanup costs. At a time when energy companies are making record profits, we should not be providing them with generous subsidies.

Rest assured I will keep your concerns in mind as I continue to look for ways to protect our precious environment here in the Congress.

Thank you again for sharing your views with me. I truly appreciate your advice and counsel and hope that you will contact me in the future whenever I can be of assistance.

I encourage you to follow me on Facebook and Twitter and visit my website at nolan.house.gov to receive daily updates.

Sincerely,

Richard M. Nolan

Member of Congress

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"Heavy Crude": Nolan distributes disinformation here. The product thrown down these pipelines is superheated tar sands diluted bitumen ('dilbit' - wiki). It is a trade-secret laden petrochemical mixture which makes the bitumen (essentially raw asphalt - wiki) just slick enough to move along. In order to smooth the political process, diluted bitumen is reframed as "heavy crude oil (wiki)" and occludes the presence of environmentally dangerous secret diluent ingredients.

The bitumen also contains tiny quartz (sand) particles which steadily etch the pipeline interiors, as NRDC/Sierra Club mention (PDF). Whenever this mixture leaks, the bitumen sinks in water while much of the more volatile diluents tend to float - making cleanups a far messier affair than with conventional or "light crude", which does actually float and is pretty familiar in Hazmat training world. See: The Dangers of Diluted Bitumen Oil - NYTimes.com (OpEd Aug 2012) re Kalamazoo River in Michigan:

After the dilbit gushed into the river, it began separating into its constituent parts. The heavy bitumen sank to the river bottom, leaving a mess that is still being cleaned up. Meanwhile, the chemical additives evaporated, creating a foul smell that lingered for days. People reported headaches, dizziness and nausea. No one could say with certainty what they should do. Federal officials at the scene didn’t know until weeks later that the pipeline was carrying dilbit, because federal law doesn’t require pipeline operators to reveal that information.

Transcanada has its view on dilbit: "Is it really crude oil? Yes." but… "Dilbit and synbit approximate the characteristics of typical conventional heavy crude oil." Seems like they're having it both ways. And they're blatantly lying here: "Does it float or sink if it spills in water? Oil sands-derived crudes behave the same way as conventional crude oil, which floats in still or slow-moving water."

More on dilbit controversies: Will Canadian Crude Make the Keystone XL Pipeline Leak? | StateImpact Texas

Here is the actual Keystone XL State Dept thing on Dilbit:

Dilbit is bitumen mixed with a diluent so it can be transported by pipeline. The composition of the dilbit is only provided here generically because the particular type of bitumen and diluents blend produced is variable and is typically a trade secret. A common condensate stream (liquids derived from natural gas) is currently the primary type of diluent used for Canadian heavy crude. Diluent consists of condensates, ultra-light sweet crudes, and refinery and upgrader naphtha streams from several supply sources. Typically, dilbit uses approximately 25 percent of condensate, where companies use either their own supply sources of light hydrocarbons or purchase the above condensate stream. According to the Saskatchewan Condensate Monthly Report dated September 1, 2012 (Crudemonitor 2012b), the composition of gas condensate is mainly light hydrocarbons such as iso-butene, n-butane, iso-pentane, n-pentane, and hexanes. Material Safety Data Sheets (MSDSs) (for informational/planning purposes only) for two types of diluents, naphtha and natural gas condensate, assuming a maximum diluent mix, are provided in Appendix Q. It is important to note that the chemical make-up of the diluents can vary greatly from source to source. The bitumen-diluent mixture with bitumen from the oil sands is generally similar to heavy sour crude, which is discussed in more detail. SCO may also be used as a diluent for bitumen, in which case the commodity is known as synbit (bitumen diluted with SCO). Properties of generic dilbit are shown in Table 3.13-1.

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Huh Toxicity is Class D Division 2 Subdivision A: Very Toxic Material. Interesting, didn't see that on Transcanada's page. Also "BTEX = benzene, toluene, ethylbenzene, and xylenes". Benzene is definitely carcinogenic.

See also: Keystone pipeline's 'dilbit' moment - Los Angeles Times - Dec 2012.

A Dilbit Primer: How It's Different from Conventional Oil | InsideClimate News - June 2012

Keystone XL Primer: Secrecy Still Shrouds Diluted Bitumen Risks | InsideClimate News - Nov 2011.

"supporting more than 42,000 good-paying jobs": This is another block of disinformation and reaches into the more dishonest level by adding "good-paying". This has been heavily debated since it counts temporary and partial work, and general economic ripples, as partial equivalents to a full job.

The most recent mainstream coverage on this spin chunk: Will Keystone XL pipeline create 42,000 ‘new’ jobs? - The Washington Post - Glenn Kessler Jan 6 2015 (reported by wapo in 2013 originally)

See: Keystone XL Job Claims Wouldn't Live Up To Hype, Experts Say - March 2014.

TransCanada CEO says 42,000 Keystone XL pipeline jobs are 'ongoing, enduring' | PunditFact - "Girling said, 'the 42,000 jobs is in ongoing, enduring jobs.'" Sure buddy. Even his spokester had to walk that whopper back.

This figure comes from the State Department study which, for example, claims that 300+ entertainment jobs indirectly get supported by pipeline construction, and assumes that the actual construction jobs last 19.5 weeks. These are batched together to count as one full "job", and the totals for the physical pipes that have already been completed are also included in this figure.

"these tar sands will continue to be developed regardless of this project's approval": That is not necessarily true - on two levels. The projects have been hitting the skids and losing investors, and funding is getting pulled as rapidly as they can from early-stage projects. Saying they "will continue to be developed" when they're losing investors is inaccurate. And of course, the projects only move if they are financially feasible. If they get priced out from transportation due to lack of capacity, then the overall statement is also false.

There is not some magic way to make these projects profitable without export capacity - and even with more export capacity the whole thing is going over the cliff anyway. See:

“Citizen Interventions” Have Cost Canada’s Tar Sands Industry $17B, New Report Shows | DeSmogBlog: "The report said market forces and public opposition have played a significant role in the cancellation of three major tar sands projects in 2014 alone: Shell’s Pierre River, Total’s Joslyn North, and Statoil’s Corner Project. " Yeah sounds like they are continuing to be developed, for sure.

Tar sands industry faces 'existential' $246 billion loss - The Ecologist- Nov 27 2014: "The report suggests that that investors are being misled about the economic viability of oil sands production… CTI calculate that 92% of future oil sands production will only viable if oil prices are $95 per barrel. However, prices stand at only $85, so producers are losing money for every barrel of oil they sell - unless they are cushioned by existing higher-priced contracts, which will sooner or later expire."

Is it time to panic in the oil sands? - Macleans.ca - Nov 29 2014 - graphic shows that bitumen is lower-priced because it requires so much processing, making it even worse of a business prospect. Plenty of industry details in this story.


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As Oil Prices Drop, Canadian Oil Sands May Be Wasted Investment

Tar-sands industry loses $17.1 billion thanks to public opposition | Grist Nov 4 2014

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It is also worth noting that the anti-pipeline candidate, Green Party American Indian elder Skip Sandman got 4.3% or 11,450 votes. The diligent efforts of many at least forced Nolan to cover his flank with some better votes — frustrating but hardly wasted. Nolan received 48.5%, narrowly edging Stewart Mills at 47.1%. (Side note: the cheesy DCCC messaging to pigeonhole Mills as a rich guy seems to have backfired, this district shouldn't be that close really.)

For further nitty gritty updates: Please check out Minnesota Brown for the Ranger side and BluestemPrairie.com for industrial agriculture & related political maneuvering. Both sites did a great job covering another ranger, DFL Sen. Tomassoni, trying to double dip with lobbying gig.

Canada's Parliament Hill like The Alamo? Canadian Security Crisis Continuum coincides with push for expanded powers

Canada has usually followed a Bush-lite foreign policy under Stephen Harper for what seems like forever. Besides South Park jokes, Canada seems to usually be virtually invisible in US news. That has suddenly changed and it is already being pegged on ISIS for a much-welcome burst of World War 3 media fearporn.

Glenn Greenwald wrote up a recent attack on Canadian soldiers. See: Canada, At War For 13 Years, Shocked That 'A Terrorist' Attacked Its Soldiers - The Intercept

Anyway I was struck by this column from Ian MacLeod as I feel like it represents the angle of high-level circles in Ottowa formulating their preferred narrative. I recognized the name from somewhere and indeed he is a grizzled veteran journalist of the intel beat, and if anyone can lay down the “here’s how it’s gonna be eh” from the Canadian military-industrial security gang it’s MacLeod.

Analysis: Effects on Ottawa will be lasting and far-reaching | Ottawa Citizen

This is a game changer.

Wednesday’s attacks in Ottawa strongly suggest the Islamic State (ISIL) or other foreign jihadist influences have the ability to inspire, recruit or possibly even task Canadian sympathizers to launch domestic assaults, however unsophisticated.

With details still emerging Wednesday night, ISIL was the leading suspect. The terrorist group has publicly called on supporters to kill military personnel and civilians in Canada and other countries — including by running them over with cars. In just three days, two soldiers have been murdered on Canadian soil, one run down by a car in St-Jean-sur-Richelieu and another shot in cold-blood at one of the country’s most sacred sites, the Tomb of the Unknown Soldier. [….]

Both Canadians alleged to have carried out this week’s atrocities were reportedly identified as “high-risk travellers” who’d had their passports seized by the RCMP.

As more details emerge, immediate questions mount:

  • What specific details of a domestic ISIL threat were known to federal officials and when?
  • Did they foreshadow Wednesday’s events?
  • What was the operational response?
  • If Wednesday’s gunman was on authorities radar, as reported, why was he still able to launch his attack?

It seems certain Parliament Hill will become less welcoming, more fortified. But will it become any safer?

Complaints and official reviews of Parliament Hill security date back almost to its founding.

The wrought-iron fence along Wellington Street was an early security feature, as was the wide expanse of open lawn, a 19th century military practice developed by the Royal Engineers. Turf battles between the RCMP and Commons and Senate security services have gone on for years.

The House of Commons Security Services, whose officers have long been allowed to carry guns, is responsible for buildings under the jurisdiction of the House.

The Senate Protective Service is responsible for the east portion of Centre Block and East Block. Its officers were given permission to carry arms this summer, but it’s not known how many were armed Wednesday.

The RCMP is responsible for the grounds, as well as the security of the prime minister and visiting dignitaries when outside the buildings. The areas under the jurisdiction of the three security forces extend across a number of city blocks. The streets, including Wellington Street, are the responsibility of Ottawa police.

Though they operate under a co-ordinated “master security plan,” a 2012 review by the Office of the Auditor-General recommended a unified security force guard not only Parliament Hill but the entire precinct.

On another front, it wasn’t long ago that the death of Osama bin Laden and demise of core al-Qaida as inspiration and organizer for global jihadists movements led to calls for Canada’s security intelligence apparatus to recalibrate and shift focus to issues such as climate change, resource conflicts and failed states.

There’ll be no such transition now.

The Conservative government’s push to legislate new powers for police and security services will almost certainly gain steam and additional public support.

Already, the federal government was to unveil new measures Thursday to give federal security agents more power to track suspected terrorists.

Further moves to legislate in the face of this emergency may also trigger calls for caution to ensure that any additional state counter-terrorism powers are true to the aspirations of the democracy they are supposed to protect.

In other words, simply ensuring that such measures are consistent with the Charter of Rights is not always the same as saying they are necessary, wise or even just.

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Speculative angles spurred by this rather candid post from MacLeod: So many times we have heard about a "gunman was on authorities radar” that turned out to be a sketchier player or asset connected to other organizations.

The scheduled rollout of security measures adds to further skepticism. Even if they find an ISIS angle that they really run with, this incident seems tainted from the start.

So many parties benefit from sudden escalation in conflict, it’s hard to see why intelligence agencies would benefit from preventing incidents like the attack in Ottawa.

It seems like RCMP is set up to take the blame, so we will get a super RCMP — and of course even less freedom of movement than the NAFTA’ized Canadian border currently affords anyone deemed politically “unpalatable”. I wonder if Canadian security ops would invade Minnesota?

It seems like a good point to start watching more episodes of Continuum, chronicling the time traveling adventures of anticorporate neo-luddite terrorists battling a moralizing cyborg cop from the Canadian Future...

Ian MacLeod is indeed someone from the firmament that would be the one to put out that major message locking in the Conservative plan right now.

For example: PODCAST: Broken Mirrors, Episode 1: "we sit with Ian MacLeod who has 30 year’s experience as a reporter in the intelligence, national security, military and terrorism fields. The discussion occurs over several glasses of wine. In the third segment, Tom’s risk assessment looks at what damage has occurred as a result of the Snowden revelations.”

Anyway it is always unfortunate when these events occur, and hopefully Canada will be willing to face its geopolitical problems through something besides ever-more military interventionism — which is clearly the goal of so many parties involved.

Iran-Contra is not dead: Gary Webb's Dark Alliance on the big screen! Kill the Messenger tackles corporate media & CIA-aligned drug trafficking

"Even now, those who like to say Iran-Contra’s long over, are wrong.

There are still Congressional hearings about it today that we don’t hear much about because they’re behind closed doors, but there is still media interest in it.

There are many people within the government who can still be hurt, and they are in even higher positions than they were then. That’s why it remains sensitive.”Al Martin, The Conspirators: Secrets of an Iran Contra Insider p282 (2002)

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Nothing is ever really acknowledged in America until it gets the Hollywood treatment, wrapped by a screenplay and soundtrack into that big image-stream narrative America tells itself as it reproduces its existence every day. The difficult map of intelligence agencies and the war on drugs has mostly been skirted by Hollywood, but in an overdue turn of good fortune Gary Webb’s story finally gets pinned to the Big Board pretty well.

Journalist Gary Webb used the Internet to nearly bring the war on drugs to the brink of collapse by exposing intelligence connections to leading cocaine flows in the US during Iran-Contra. In the 1990s major media forces were faced with critical new voices undermining the credibility of America's post-EO12333 drug war system. Like many before and since, Webb got the corporate media banhammer, portrayed here in incisive and indicting detail (looking at you, Walter Pincus).

"For the better part of a decade, a San Francisco Bay Area drug ring sold tons of cocaine to the Crips and Bloods street gangs of Los Angeles and funneled millions in drug profits to an arm of the contra guerrillas of Nicaragua run by the Central Intelligence Agency, the San Jose Mercury News has found." Gary Webb circa 1996.

Leading the way with a star-studded cast in Focus Features’ Kill the Messenger, a decent set of films taking on Iran-Contra-related intelligence intrigue and the war on drugs is hitting the US this month, and a veritable wave of news stories exploring these old narratives are popping up nationwide!

I was very lucky to get into an advance screening & now trying to provide here more links for those both new and old to this sick twisted tale at the heart of the American Dream. Iran-Contra really fascinated me in 2007 & I got books, started putting videos together until l’Affair d’2008RNC pulled me away into more local concerns. "Iran-Contra Goggles” remain useful to decode the same basic corrupt systems we have today.

Kill the Messenger covers Webb’s tragic story, as he exposes the roles of CIA assets moving literally tons of cocaine into the US to create a covert money source for the Contras in Nicaragua. Freeway Ricky Ross, the key recipient of the cocaine, has a film coming out Oct 17th, Freeway: Crack in the System and Shadows of Liberty also features a Gary Webb-oriented segment, “Killing the Messenger".

dark-alliance-7anim.gifKill the Messenger encompasses Gary’s story, Dark Alliance, the first groundbreaking news story to really go viral over the Internet, providing readers around the world with primary source documents and more to explore. Animated gifs - a new technology at the time - showed cocaine pathways flowing into the US.

Iran-Contra aficionados and Gary’s family, who supported the film’s production, will feel a strong sense of vindication, although the latter third of the story quits expanding our view of this high-level drug underworld as the bottom of Gary’s life gradually falls out.

We get a sound foundation under the story, it seems they didn’t cut any especially bad corners that would undermine this critical shot at contextualizing Webb in American journalism.

This film doesn’t explain Southern Air Transport or Barry Seal, later extensions of similar work, or the similar sad fates of Danny Casolaro, Michael Ruppert and others.

darktop.gifAs is tradition, it’s already been belittled in the New York Times - by David Carr, who frames the notion of CIA drug trafficking networks as it "might ring some distant, skeptical bell” — ignoring his own paper’s recent reporting on Karzai’s brother’s CIA-backed cartel style operation etc.

Jeremy Renner played a laudable role getting this whole thing out the door: "It resonated with movies like 'All the President's Men' and 'The Parallax View.’”

The CIA leisure suits, aviator sunglasses and careful color palettes harken to these carefully styled 1970s paranoia thrillers, both directed by Alan J Pakula in the “Paranoia Trilogy”.

Andy Garcia as Norwin Meneses and Michael Kenneth Williams as Freeway Ricky Ross are excellent, while Oliver Platt as the rumpled, dubious editor, Michael Sheen as the bureaucrat, all of these are well-crafted roles if brief. West Wing's Richard Schiff as the Washington Post's coverup editor ringleader was just right.

Ray Liotta’s surprise covert ops "nighttime of the soul” scene is also pretty damn good.

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This nice media wave is a good chance for everyone to learn more, and hear from the old journalists who also got the banhammer for daring to push the truth out there. Robert Parry has a new piece: The CIA/MSM Contra-Cocaine Cover-Up (Oct 3 2014).

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I’ll suggest giving money to NarcoNews to help them keep rolling, if you can. Part of the backstory contextualized by NarcoNews: The Field: Hollywood’s Gary Webb Movie and the Message that Big Media Couldn’t Kill. NarcoNews is hosting the original Dark Alliance archive here. Sept 24th update with the family: Narco News: Gary Webb: Vindicated

The CIA has even released its creepy internal reaction piece for PR control via FOIA: http://www.foia.cia.gov/sites/default/files/DOC_0001372115.pdf - "Managing a Nightmare: CIA Public Affairs and the Drug Conspiracy Story,” and the Intercept IDed the CIA writer as Nicholas Dujmovic.

“It’s like we say “Iran-Contra”. "Iran-Contra" activity continues to go on today. In some cases, it’s the very same names and faces. In other cases, it’s a newer, younger generation of names and faces. But the narcotics, weapons and fraud aspects still continue to this day.” - Al Martin p330

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More coverage and reviews: How Kill the Messenger Will Vindicate Investigative Journalist Gary Webb | The Informer | LA Weekly

Positive review in Variety: ‘Kill the Messenger’ Review: Jeremy Renner Plays Journalist Gary Webb | Varietybush-cocaine.jpg

Skeptical review: 'Kill the Messenger' Review: Jeremy Renner's Muckraking Feels Half-Baked in This Biopic - TheWrap (Sept 26th)

'Kill the Messenger': Film Review - The Hollywood Reporter

Esquire Sept 2013: The late Chuck Bowden’s The Pariah - Esquire. A must-read on this whole equation. (on Scribd)

Ex-L.A. Times Writer Apologizes for "Tawdry" Attacks | News | Los Angeles | Los Angeles News and Events | LA Weekly

Robert Parry 2013: Contra-Cocaine Was a Real Conspiracy | Consortiumnews discussing how he and Brian Barger started the Contra-cocaine scandal unravelling at the AP in 1985.

cia-cocaine-reagan-bush-clinton.jpg“Kill the Messenger”: The dark side of journalism - Opinion Shop Sept 19 2014

Jeremy Renner Wears a Wedding Ring -Showbiz411 discusses film

Out On The Weekend - Esquire - Sept 5, quick story referencing Gary

The film is also based on a book by Nick Schou of the same name. Interview here. Book: Kill the Messenger: How the CIA's Crack-Cocaine Controversy Destroyed Journalist Gary Webb: Nick Schou, Charles Bowden. Audiobook read by Bowden.

Nick Schou on the adaptation of 'Kill the Messenger' | Creative Loafing Atlanta

Kill The Messenger: the Gary Webb story has holes but Renner's performance still sticks – review | Film | theguardian.com (Sept 26th)

CinemaBlend positive review: Kill The Messenger Review - CINEMABLEND

Pretty good WSWS writeup on recent FOIA: CIA document details cover-up of drug trafficking by Contras - World Socialist Web Site

We lost Charles Bowden recently and he was a true friend of Gary Webb. Charles Bowden has died, but his voice is louder than ever | the narcosphere Sept 2 2014

Public radio interview

Rotten Tomatoes only has 6 reviews up. This is #7 - and the only one with Ollie DC-6 gif below!

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Freeway Ricky Ross is making his move in all this, somehow having survived everything so far. Last summer: Freeway Rick Is Dreaming - Los Angeles Magazine (May 2013) An odd story by Jesse Katz who had a unique long term relationship with him as a journalist.

Trailer for Freeway: Crack in the System: Dropping Oct 18th:

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Another film, Shadows of Liberty, (FB) released in 2012 & playing Midwest theaters lately, includes everything from a “Killing the Messenger” segment on Webb & Dark Alliance to a Iraq marketing section covering Iraq Intel war spoofing, Iraqi National Congress, Rendon Group psyops discussed by James Bamford. Both hit the New York Times pretty hard, as well they should, in propagandizing for Iraq & attacking Webb.

In a latter section Sibel Edmonds and Phil Giraldi look at covert agents among US nuclear secrets & Marc Grossman at the State Dept. Really a nicely rounded collection, even if I’m not a big fan of some of the film participants. Detailed notes here. New Zealand review here.

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Other materials. From inside the CIA: Statement of the CIA IG Hitz in 1998: https://www.uspiked.com/assets/article-assets/Shadows of Liberty/Statement of CIA Inspector General to The House Committee On Intelligence - March 16, 1998 - Wikisource, the free online library.pdf (also here) STATEMENT BY FREDERICK P. HITZ, INSPECTOR GENERAL, CIA.. Volume 1: https://www.cia.gov/library/reports/general-reports-1/cocaine/overview-of-report-of-investigation-2.html

Introduction: The Contra Story — Central Intelligence Agency

Namebase index from Hitz Report. Better know a player: CIA Report on Contras and Cocaine

Fusion: A drug cartel guide to laundering millions — Fusion (9/30/2014)

Freeway Ricky Ross as advocate for literacy: Former Drug Kingpin ‘Freeway’ Rick Ross Becomes Advocate for Literacy | Atlanta Daily World (9/26/2014)

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Supporting material: Panthers, Crips & Bloods: Bastards of the Party - Top Documentary Films (2005) a must see for the development of Los Angeles gang structure in the context of massive importation of drugs & sophisticated police & federal operations since the days of the Black Panthers.

Pissed off CIA honcho Duane Clarridge - “there’s never been a conspiracy in this country!” (great clip in two of these films)

EO12333: The Private Contractor angle: roughly speaking, once this executive order was created, devious operations could be wrapped in corporate fronts like “Southern Air Transport”, “Vortex”, “Evergreen International” and others even lesser known.

2.7 Contracting. Agencies within the Intelligence Community are authorized to enter into contracts or arrangements for the provision of goods or services with private companies or institutions in the United States and need not reveal the sponsorship of such contracts or arrangements for authorized intelligence purposes. Contracts or arrangements with academic institutions may be undertaken only with the consent of appropriate officials of the institution.

Executive Order 12333 is back in the news: The Ghost of Ronald Reagan Authorizes Most NSA Spying - The Intercept

They also point to a gap in the public reaction to Ed Snowden’s revelations about those programs. Despite that fact that most of the NSA’s spying relies on Reagan’s directive, Executive Order 12333, the vast majority of reform efforts have concentrated on the Foreign Intelligence Surveillance Act (FISA) and other legislative fixes. “Congress’s reform efforts have not addressed the executive order,” notes Alex Abdo of the ACLU, ”and the bulk of the government’s disclosures in response to the Snowden revelations have conspicuously ignored the NSA’s extensive mandate under EO 12333.”

The documents assert that mandate baldly. A legal factsheet from the NSA, dated June 2013, states that the FISA, which requires judicial oversight over spying on Americans, “only regulates a subset of the NSA’s signals intelligence activities. NSA conducts the majority of its SIGINT activities solely pursuant to the authority provided by Executive Order 12333.”

Often referred to as “twelve triple three” or EO 12333, the executive order came into being in 1981 under Reagan. Much of the post-Snowden debate, particularly with respect to the bulk collection of Americans’ phone records, has focused on the interlocking legal authorities of Section 215 of the Patriot Act and the 2008 FISA Amendments Act. But, the ACLU notes, “because the executive branch issued and now implements the executive order all on its own, the programs operating under the order are subject to essentially no oversight from Congress or the courts.” The documents describe procedures for safeguarding the rights of Americans whose information might be “incidentally” collected under 12333, but those procedures are overseen by the director of national intelligence or the attorney general.

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Classic item: The only memo that made it out of Ollie’s Shredding Party, the Annotated Oliver North memo: Oliver North – Release of American Hostages in Beirut ("Diversion Memo") | Genius

From the Wilderness, Michael Ruppert’s old website: C.I.A. IG Report - Vol II - Oliver North is Toast!

Basic writeup: (3/23/98) CIA Admits Knowledge of Contra Drug Trafficking

The CIA IG report Part II: Volume II: The Contra Story — Central Intelligence Agency

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Who? Oliver Hardy? Andy Garcia’s great line in Kill the Messenger about how it was Ollie’s idea to run drugs & guns around is a nod to Oliver North’s wonderful note: The “Honduran DC-6 which is being used for runs out of New Orleans is probably being used for drug runs into U.S."

dc6notes.gif

A personal favorite :]

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The 1996 Los Angeles CIA Town Hall meeting on drug trafficking was a critical moment. I would identify this meeting as the closest point to total collapse of the war on drugs edifice since Nixon, and it’s worth noting Deutch resigned shortly thereafter. This meeting cost the director of the CIA his job - and two years later they had to concede so much of Gary’s work was 100% accurate.

cia-drug-trafficking-townhall.png

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Another regular day - Day 28 of Iran Contra hearings Part 1, July 14 1987: They get into the weird Continuity of Government stuff in the 3rd hour.

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Gary Webb on Gary Webb - CIA Drug Smuggling [2004] - YouTube

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Mr Blum - portrayed in similar hairstyle fashion in Kill the Messenger: CIA Allegations of Cocaine Trafficking Conspiracy - Crack Epidemic (1996) - YouTube. Good stuff around 47 minutes about the prosecution manipulations.

blum.png

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Immortal Technique - Immortal Technique - Peruvian Cocaine feat Diabolic, Tonedeff, Poison Pen, Loucipher, C-Rayz Walz - YouTube. The Scarface-sampling hiphop opus magnum of this whole damn thing.

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Classic: Gary Webb on C-SPAN 1996: How Crack Funded a CIA War: Gary Webb Interview on the Contras and Ronald Reagan (1996) - YouTube

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OTHER LINKS:10561558_519106554857975_5309717516771745206_n.jpg August 2005: Judas Retires: Jerry Ceppos and the Burning Memory of Gary Webb: Judas Retires: Jerry Ceppos and the Burning Memory of Gary Webb | the narcosphere. Still around at the LSU Mass Comm school: LSU Manship School of Mass Communication

Meh 2005 piece from AJR on Webb: American Journalism Review

Timeline: Understanding the Iran-Contra Affairs

Bill Conroy 2005: "He Drew Blood" » CounterPunch - includes Bowden discussion.

Esquire: Gary Webb's Glorious Comeback - Esquire June 2013

Esquire: Gary Webb And The Limits Of Vindication - Esquire June 2013

Semi-related: alt journalist Wayne Madsen on Franklin sex trafficking scandal which had Iran-contra financing connections. The “Conspiracy of Silence” is related but goes way, way beyond all this. Wayne also suspects a similar Iran-Contra-like complex role related to 9-11 and the Pinal Air Park intel aviation field in Arizona, I wouldn’t be surprised if that’s how it turns out. (The late author Philip Marshall seemed to be on this tack as well before his weird death in early 2013.)

garywebb.jpg

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MOAR BIBLIOGRAPHY:10606152_537701239665173_8067769002059518467_n.jpg Dark Alliance is now available in paperback and you should buy it at your local bookseller.

Powderburns by Cele Castillo covers much of the same arena. Here is his Webb web page.

The Politics of Heroin in Southeast Asia (1972) by Alfred McCoy is *critical* because it’s probably the first academic book that shows how heroin is used geopolitically by US covert forces to finance their allies through the power of chemical dependency combined with covert logistics and the monopoly granted by the force of the state. Everything subsequent follows this pattern. [PDF 1] [PDF 2]

Film: The House I Live In by Eugene Jarecki (2012) & How to Make Money Selling Drugs (2012) by Matthew Cooke.

Al Martin: The Conspirators: Secrets of An Iran-Contra Insider (2002). Horribly edited but you won’t find a better collection of names and front companies, code words and the true texture of Reagan era intel/fraud complexes. *Not* for beginners.

Life During Wartime: Resisting Counterinsurgency by AK Press. Kristian Williams (Editor); Lara Messersmith-Glavin (Editor); William Munger (Editor). Great guide to drug war militarization in its most sophisticated forms.

Barry & The Boys: The CIA, the Mob & America’s Secret History (2001, 2006) by Daniel Hopsicker. Covers Iran-Contra related nodes especially Florida and New Orleans aviation and shell activities, Barry Seal and a lot of hemispheric covert operations in a jaunty style. Mad Cow Morning News has been persisting in Iran-Contra style exposures for a long time in Florida .

End Times: The Death of the Fourth Estate (Counterpunch): Alexander Cockburn, Jeffrey St. Clair. Covers corporate media corruption with major case study of media hit on Webb,

Cocaine Politics: Drugs, Armies and the CIA and Central America by Peter Dale Scott and Jonathan Marshall. (1991)

The Iran Contra Connection: Secret Teams and Covert Operations in the Reagan Era by Jonathan Marshall, Peter Dale Scott and Jane Hunter (1987)

The Killing Game by Gary Webb (2011). There are plenty of other good books but this can get you started, anyway.

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Kill the Messenger was also the title of a film about FBI whistleblower Sibel Edmonds, produced in 2007. Watch it here, I thought it was quite good.

Also: Support NarcoNews! Narco News Needs Your Help at this Exciting Moment

A final note: Michael Kenneth Williams, who notably played gangsta-assassin Omar on the Wire, does a great job as Ricky Ross. He also plays an oddly related role in 2014’s “The Purge: Anarchy”, a pulpy dystopian fantasy about the government granting everyone the “right” to kill each other 12 hours a year. Williams’ character is the revolutionary who recognizes & resists how the elite surveil them and clink champagne glasses, as the lower classes kill each other mercilessly to maintain social stratification. I couldn’t think of a better parallel to the modern American war on drugs.

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Keep riding with those Aviators, Gary.
RIP Truth Tellers.

DailyMail & ABC mainstreams cryptofascist 'Third Position' on grand ISIS takeover image, promote clash of civilizations

See ThirdPosition (Third_Position) on Twitter, i.e. 4 hrs ago: "Above all, we seek to awaken #White #RacialConciousness & to get #WhitePeoples to seek their own group interests. " Apparently Twitter Nipsters [Nipsters: The German Neo-Nazis Trying to Put a Hipper Face on Hate June 23 Rolling Stone] somehow got their scary ISIS map tweet carried by the DailyMail.

A lot of maps going around to spike fear of a clash of civilizations. In this case the UK Daily Mail magnified the meme Third_position was selling. These media products usually have some kind of watermark that indicates which group actually released it - disconcertingly missing from most "ISIS maps" appearing in Western media. In any case fascists & the Daily Mail just magnified tension, the main point here & worth flagging.

third-position-isis.png

The discernable web history of this image is interesting too. Tineye.com matching finds it appearing June 13 with a different insert on the lower right and floating around Turkish news blogs. I would be interested if anyone else can trace when & where these images actually first appeared.

ABC News' Colleen Curry did a piece on this also embedding third_position without denoting it as a fascist twitter feed: See the Terrifying ISIS Map Showing Its 5-Year Expansion Plan - ABC News.

Sharina Shwartz attributed it to "Pro-ISIS social media accounts" on TheBlaze. This One Word on a Syrian Mural Says All You Need to Know About ISIS Insurgents’ Ultimate Goal | TheBlaze.com

Another map pops up perhaps first June 11th on Radikal.com.tr, a somewhat sketch Turkish source: IŞİD: Yurttaşsız Devletin Büyük Oyunu - Sarphan Uzunoğlu - Radikal Blog

ISIS-Wilayats-thumb-560x408-2998.jpg

This is repurposed for the suddenly prominent Institute for War [ understandingwar.org ] , see Iraq Update: Jihadists Seize 2 More Iraqi Towns; Close To 30 Miles Of Baghdad; Iran Rushes To Help | Zero Hedge on June 13

ISIS envisioned boundaries_0_0.jpg

That report is dated June 10 here Mapping Al Qaeda's Grand Ambitions In Iraq And Syria | Zero Hedge

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via John Hall | Daily Mail Online: ISIS militants outline chilling five-year plan for global domination | Mail Online & the lovable editors of 'sharia unveiled', somewhat biased against Arab kids on the West Bank they are...

However, in a map widely-shared by ISIS supporters on social networks, the Islamist group outlined a five-year plan for how they would like to expand their boundaries beyond Muslim-majority countries.

ISIS Khilafah 1

Caliphate: A map purportedly showing the areas ISIS plans to have under its control within five years has been widely shared online. As well as the Middle East, North Africa and large areas of Asia, it also reveals ISIS’ ambition to extend into Europe. Spain, which was Muslim-ruled until the late 15th Century, would form part of the caliphate, as would the Balkan states and eastern Europe, up to and including Austria

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I was a bit surprised to not be able to trace these images into actual Arabic websites using reverse image searches, which suggests more work is needed to figure out where they are actually coming from. Are they being planted? Anyway I gotta call it a night -- the fascists amplifying these things is really a big deal.

Aha: Carbon Market digital currency "Ven" by Hub Culture = evil Illuminati knockoff of Bitcoin, backed with REDD "CO2lonialism of Forests" suddenly now approved!

Lolz just stumbled on this - had to write a quick post with a lurid headline. Ven is like the Sharper Image / corporate greenwashing version of Bitcoins and it's all tied into a big ball of classic shady stuff. There is a really nice blob of greenwashing social constructions underpinning the Ven 'value' here, see if you can spot it:

ven-global-currency.png

The value of Ven is determined by the financial markets in a weighted basket of currencies, commodities and carbon futures trading against other major currencies at floating exchange rates. Ven is the first digital currency to float, and the first to include carbon in its pricing, making it the only environmentally linked currency in existence. Since Ven is 100% backed by reserve assets equivalent to the total Ven in circulation, the inclusion of these assets in the reserve basket provide a demand source for carbon, with material benefits to the environment at large. Over 25,000 acres of Amazon rainforest and other environmental investments have been made as a result of Ven.

Currently over 20 million units of Ven have circulated, and it can be used to purchase anything from commoditiesto fashion to cars to a coffee. Watch a Ven video. Read what Forbes, CNN, WSJ, Harvard Business Review, Techcrunch, Fortune and others say about Ven

REDD IS A DONE DEAL: I bumped into the big news, REDD is now a done deal, after wondering if there would be some more weird knockoffs of Bitcoin-like digital currency systems. There are other open source P2P systems like Litecoin which are basically mostly Bitcoin code, with some logical enough replacements. This is a welcome development. Anything with non-commercialized overall code & network structure should probably help us in the long run.

Then there are the the more suspiciously organized schemes -- rather, they are centralized, which undermines the whole point. Ven and Ripple are two of the biggest.

REDD, as you will see below, is literally a Walmart scheme.

The extra juicy bonus level with Ven is its cornerstone rests on the commodification of atmospheric carbon, spun not as a final act of capitalism but one that redeems it.

Even better this is all linked to REDD, "Reducing Emissions from Deforestation and Degradation". REDD is one of the nastiest byproducts of the COP climate failsauce agreement negotiating rounds... Oh crap - apparently REDD, or REDD+ has just been approved by "Conference of the Parties" aka COP.

The "Carbon Market" and REDD+ forest commodification schemes are the root of the Ven Tree. [More Ven REDD plumbing below]

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Specially designed for the greenwashing junkie in all of us, a new scheme long opposed by the Indigenous to unleash yet another round of deforestation and reproduce extra capitalisms.

Please check out the TONS of material about REDD: REDD - Reaping Profits from Evictions, land grabs Deforestation and Destruction of biodiversity Lots of info here. :[

The Key: "Carbon Trading and Origination- Carbon Planet & REDD -What are REDD Carbon Credits?

REDD stands for 'Reducing Emissions from Deforestation and Degradation'. A REDD carbon credit is a carbon market mechanism created to reduce emissions from deforestation and forest degradation in developing countries.

Official UN-REDD page: UN-REDD Programme -- About REDD+

Moar goodies: Carbon Credits | redd-monitor.org. // Why you should not buy voluntary carbon credits as an investment: A carbon trader explains | redd-monitor.org // Carbon credits « naked capitalism // McLaren F1 & Jenson Button One Minute, Boiler Room Scams the Next: the Remarkable Double Life of Carbon Neutral Investments, Limited, (CNI) « naked capitalism // Carbonscam firms aggressively knock stuff off of Google: Why is Google Censoring Search Results to Nix Warnings Just Like Ones Issued by a UK Regulator? « naked capitalism // The Lotus Formula 1 Team, Its Embarrassing Partner, Advanced Global Trading of Dubai, and Carbon Neutral Investments « naked capitalism // Newcastle United FC, Bloodhound SSC, Glitz, Glam and Police Raids: a Last Look at the Remarkable Double Life of Carbon Neutral Investments Limited (CNI) « naked capitalism // The UK Insolvency Service’s Oddly-Timed Carbon Scams Press Release Highlights Its Own Slow Response « naked capitalism

Even in recent weeks, more work on carbon credit scams is coming out: Week two of Naked Capitalism's series on Carbon Neutral Investments and other carbon credit scams | redd-monitor.org. Look at all these sketchy British corporate shells trading carbon goodies: List of Clearing Members » Carbon Neutral Investments < Apr 2013 archive page of a website that is now down. Nov 6 2013: Insolvency Service - Press Releases - Carbon credit scams targeted as 19 companies shut down

Nineteen carbon credit companies that ripped off nearly £24m from over 1,500 investors, including a 94-year-old man, have been wound up in the last 15 months by the Insolvency Service, Consumer Minister Jo Swinson announced today.

The companies, including Eco Global Markets Limited ('Eco Global'), which alone took at least £8.5m from over 230 investors – targeted mainly older people and sold them Certified Emission Reduction Units (CERs) – or carbon credits - using high pressure sales techniques. Most of the victims ranged in age between 50 and 85 years.

Eco Global was wound up by the Insolvency Service in July 2013.Two other companies, Anglo-Capital Partners Ltd and Cavendish Jacobs Ltd which between them took over £1.2m, were wound up in October 2013.

Salesmen played on people’s keenness to ‘do their bit’ to save the environment while making an investment at the same time. Investors were promised huge returns by selling these credits to corporate giants such as Marks and Spencer and British Airways. But instead most found there was no market for the relatively small amounts they held as companies that trade CERs only trade in high volumes.

Plus This: Carbon credit trading - Financial Conduct Authority

Find out how carbon credit trading works, why we think you should avoid investing in carbon credits and related markets, and how to protect yourself from what is most likely a scam......

However, many investors have told us they are not able to sell or trade the carbon credits they have bought. None of these investors reported making a profit.

This supports our view that there is not a viable secondary market for ordinary investors to sell or trade carbon credits, despite claims and promises made by many firms, advisers and brokers promoting and selling them as an investment.

More critical info: REDD - carbon trade watch. Academic: Demand for REDD Carbon Credits: A Primer on Buyers, Markets, and Factors Impacting Prices | The Nicholas Institute for Environmental Policy Solutions. Wiki: Carbon offset - Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia.

Matt Taibbi had this nailed down in 2009: The Great American Bubble Machine | Politics News | Rolling Stone - Goldman Sachs planned to blow up a huge carbon bubble but when cap-and-trade fell apart in the US, so did the plan to make insane money off trades based on derivatives of air quality. Now the plan is coming back fast.

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REDD IS HERE:

Ecosystem Marketplace - UPDATE: COP Makes It Official<br />Complete REDD Package Adopted [What a sketchy website! Sponsored by Bloomberg, World Bank & USAID ]
UPDATE: 20:33 CET, 19:33 GMT
: Complete REDD package sails through the COP. It's now a done deal. Congratulations to all those who made this possible.



UPDATE: 19:30 CET, 18:30 GMT: The Conference of the Parties (COP) has now officially approved the REDD text that REDD negotiators had signed off on this morning.



22 November 2013 | WARSAW | Seven long years after it was placed on the agenda of the United Nations Framework Convention on Climate Change (UNFCCC), REDD+ is about to become a functioning, formal mechanism with agreed-on rules for establishing reference levels, recognizing mitigation activities, creating institutions, ensuring safeguards, and – above all – creating performance-based financing mechanisms.



The finance section had been the sticking point all week, with the Coalition of Rainforest Nations, led by Papua New Guinea (PNG), pushing for all finance to be placed under a new REDD+ Committee. That provision was finally removed by the REDD chair yesterday afternoon, and PNG did not object. The final text was released this morning and approved by all REDD negotiators.



Participants highlighted several passages as being significant. For one, the document calls not only for results-based financing, but for financing of all phases of REDD implementation – from readiness and capacity-building, through piloting, and to payments for performance.



The final document also makes results-based finance contingent on safeguards being met, lays out clear rules for transparency, and sets minimum reporting requirements before countries can qualify for results-based finance.



Moving forward, the document calls for further research into non-carbon benefits and requires the incorporation of lessons learned.



Meetings are ongoing, and we will expand our coverage with a complete wrap-up of events here in Warsaw early next week.

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Ok that's a pretty big deal. I learned about REDD / REDD+ from COP16 videos mainly shot by my indefatigable colleague FluxRostrum (mobilebroadcastnews.com ):: SEE COP 16 March for Life & Climate Justice | Mobile Broadcast News. VIDEO COLLECTION HERE: COP16 Coverage MBN/GBC - YouTube.

This video with the dubious Soham Baba about how indigenous people need to be ordered around via a REDD regime: ▶ Soham Baba, Lessons in Manipulating the Indigenous - COP16 - YouTube - great question at the end from Flux to the CHAIRMAN OF WALMART about why all the Indigenous people are opposed to REDD+:

Jane Goodall speaking at REDD+ thing Dec 2010: ▶ Jane Goodall Speaks at the COP 16 - YouTube

Robert Zoellick President of World Bank speaks at COP16 hawking REDD+ ▶ Robert Zoellick President of the World Bank Speaks at COP16 - YouTube

AND: Advancing REDD+: New Pathways and Partnerships

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Anyway so naturally the Ven digital currency is a way of taking the value of the 'carbon offsets' and turning them into Bitcoin-like digital exchange tokens. I found this guy because he wrote an article about China and Bitcoin on CNN.com: Why China wants to dominate Bitcoin - Nov. 18, 2013

Main site: Ven - global digital currency by Hub Culture A few other items...

Hub / Store / MaxMiner Digital Asset Miner - 1.25Ghash is not a worthy investment at this time certainly not at 100 watts. developed by Maxeler Technologies and these Hub Culture people.

Hub / Store / Bitcoin Ven Combined Virtual Currency Fund

Hub / Store / Finance and Funds

Hub / Store / Individual Carbon Offset

This carbon offset offer is a one tonne reduction of carbon dioxide emissions (or other greenhouse gases) to compensate for an emission made elsewhere. Use of offsets can help individuals to offset their own emissions, whether for travel, industry or other activities. There are two types of carbon offests, the compliance market and the voluntary market. The compliance market is related to the Kyoto Protocol and includes fixed market purchases related to the Kyoto Protocol. The voluntary market, which is much smaller, allows individuals, companies and governments to purchase carbon offsets to mitigate their own emissions. The price of carbon offsets vary depending on the quality, duration, scale and scope of a particular project.

Hub Culture carbon offset purchases are aggregated by individual purchases to pool resources for offset purchases at a slightly larger scale. Hub Culture offset purchases are linked specifically to REDD forest protection with Wildlife Works and to the Nike Mata no Peito project, which is actively protecting Amazon rain forest through the development of carbon protection purchases to save this important natural resource.

Pricing is on a 'per ton' basis. For guidance on calculating your own offsets, here are some approximate calculations on carbon tonnage to help you decide how much carbon to offset with this great carbon calculator from the Nature Conservancy.

Examples:

Driving a midsize car 10 miles a day: 2.7 tonnes per year
One long haul flight: 2.2 tonnes per flight
One short haul flight: .4 tonnes per flight
A one bedroom New York City apartment with some efficiency upgrades: 15 tonnes per year
Eating meat as part of your normal diet: 5.8 tonnes per year
Eating meat and also eating organic as part of your normal diet: 4.1 tonnes per year
Eating vegeteraian and organic as part of your normla diet: .6 tonnes per year
Waste production, not recycling or composting very much: 1.2 tonnes per year

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Possibly from related people - the link was in there somewhere: Kraken Digital Asset Trading Platform

Hub / Hub Culture News / News

Hub Culture

Hub / Ven - Global Digital Currency / Projects / About Ven / Notes

Hub / Ven - Global Digital Currency / News

Hub / Selected news, from Hub Culture

Hub / Ven - Global Digital Currency / News

HERE IS THE MAIN ATTRACTION:
28 April, 2011 (Hong Kong) - In a landmark transaction for the Ven economy, Hub Culture and a group of partners have successfully completed the first carbon offset trade to be priced in a virtual currency, Ven.
Article Image

The contract, negotiated by Hub Culture Knowledge Brokerage Services, is for carbon offsets registered on Winrock International’s American Carbon Registry(ACR), which were sold and retired as part of Nike's Mata no Peito initiative.

Mata no Peito is Nike’s long-term commitment to work with local organizations and communities to protect and replant forests throughout Brazil. Through the sale and retirement of carbon offsets to corporations and individuals seeking to reduce their carbon footprints, Nike will generate funds which it will donate as seed investments to innovative Brazil forestry projects.
With this Hub Culture transaction, the London Carbon Market becomes the first partner in the Mata no Peito initiative, seeding the Nike forestry fund and setting the stage for continuing growth in global Ven trading volumes.
“Nike is pleased to work with Hub Culture to list offsets for sale and retirement that will benefit the Mata no Peito initiative” said Hannah Jones, Nike VP, Sustainable Business and Innovation. “The transparent platform and virtual currency make it easy for partners around the world to become involved in protecting forests throughout Brazil.”
The transaction is the first carbon offset deal to use the Ven currency platform and represents a step forward in the evolution of the Ven global currency for international markets.
“ACR is thrilled to be a part of this revolutionary transaction,” stated Mary Grady, American Carbon Registry director of business development. “Hub Culture’s facilitation of the first carbon offset sale in Ven together with the fact that proceeds are being donated by Nike to the Mata no Peito Brazil forest fund demonstrate that ACR is working with the right partners to fulfill our mission of harnessing the power of markets to improve the environment.”
Article Image

Advantages to both parties created by the Ven as the means of exchange for the transaction include greater international pricing stability and an implied carbon offset resulting from the basket of carbon futures, commodities and leading currency components which determine ongoing Ven values. The very use of Ven implies greater demand for future carbon projects, by helping to stimulate demand for carbon futures at large.

“London Carbon Market is proud to donate to the Mata no Peito Brazil forest fund by retiring credits registered by Nike on Winrock’s ACR. As Nike’s first partner in this initiative, we look forward to further involvement with Nike and other partners committed to making sustainable projects a success. Partnering with Hub Culture for the transaction using the Ven currency makes history as the first carbon trade to be priced in the Ven digital currency, a statement of leadership we are proud to be a part of” said Dr. Constantine Pagonis of London Carbon Market.
"This Ven transaction highlights the potential of Ven in the carbon markets, and delivers tangible benefits to Brazil through forest related initiatives. As part of our commitment to the creation of a more efficient economy that better tracks externalities, the Ven has particular advantages for everyone, including an embedded carbon signal and forward price stability. We are delighted to be working as a catalyst to connect the London Carbon Market with Nike and Winrock's groundbreaking work for Brazil." said Stan Stalnaker, Founding Director at Hub Culture.

About Hub Culture

Hub Culture is a global network that operates the digital currency Ven, a network of Pavilions to drive community collaboration, and Knowledge Brokerage, a suite of services building value for the community. Established in 2002, Hub Culture is focused on worth creation and deal generation for over 25,000 global-influencers, and is at the forefront of innovation in work and collaboration.

About the American Carbon Registry

The nonprofit American Carbon Registry (ACR), an enterprise of Winrock International, is a leading carbon offset program recognized for its strong standards for environmental integrity. Founded in 1996 as the GHG Registry by Environmental Resources Trust, ACR has 15 years of experience in the development of rigorous, science-based carbon offset standards and methodologies as well as in carbon offset issuance, serialization and transparent online transaction and retirement reporting. As the first voluntary GHG registry in the world, ACR has set the bar in the global voluntary carbon market for offset quality and operational transparency.

About the London Carbon Market

London Carbon Market (LCM) champions the wisdom of green investment and social responsibility. LCM has at its foundation a board of directors which has over one hundred years of collective city experience in a spectrum of industries ranging from physical commodities trading, financial futures, and foreign exchange to financial investments. Coupled with socially conscientious blue chip partners, LCM is now at the forefront of the carbon market.

Official short links: http://hub.vg/VCCT    http://hub.vg/Mata

Contacts:

Stan Stalnaker, Hub Culture   Tel: +44 7974156 458
Email: stan.stalnaker@hubculture.com
Gurps Singh   Tel. +44 7403515315
Email: gurps.singh@londoncarbonmarket.com
Mary Grady, American Carbon Registry   Tel: +1 805 884 1961
Email: mgrady@winrock.org

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Also: The proprietors of "EcosystemMarketplace": Search "the Katoomba Group REDD" for only the finest in technocratic Africa-oriented greenwashing ruminations. Welcome to the Katoomba Group::

"The Katoomba Group is an international network of individuals working to promote, and improve capacity related to, markets and payments for ecosystem services (PES). The Group serves as a forum for the exchange of ideas and strategic information about ecosystem service transactions and markets, as well as site for collaboration between practitioners on PES projects and programs."

Katoomba Group: About Us

In 1999, Forest Trends launched the Katoomba Group – an international working group dedicated to advancing markets and payments for ecosystem services – including watershed protection, biodiversity habitat, and carbon sequestration. The Group is comprised of leading experts from forest and energy industries, research institutions, the financial world, environmental NGOs, and communities. It serves as a source of ideas for and strategic information about ecosystem service markets and transactions. The Group has been known for its international convenings, which have provided a forum for exchanging ideas, influencing policy-makers, and catalyzing new initiatives.

It has held 10 major global conferences, published and contributed to a number of publications and supported the development of a range of new PES schemes including the BioCarbon Fund, and the Mexican PES Fund. The Katoomba Group has also advised national policy discussions on financial incentives for conservation in numerous countries including China, Brazil, India, and Colombia. In 2005, The Katoomba Group launched The Ecosystem Marketplace (www.ecosystemmarketplace.com)—the world’s first global market information service for ecosystem services.

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Moar: Forest Trends - Publication Details - The REDD Opportunities Scoping Exercise

www.katoombagroup.org/events/pro-poor_redd.pdf

Anyway that should be a nice research pile to get you going. Bitcoins were of course a prank project of several retired NSA cryptographers known as the "Justice League" as well as VALIS, the orbiting alien intelligence. Later all :)

Trans Pacific Partnership discussion & community QA with Keith Ellison, IATP & MN Fair Trade Coalition. Malaysia Round starts July 15

I was glad to help publish live video from a panel and community discussion about the controversial and incredibly dangerous Trans Pacific Partnership secret treaty now being developed by corporate weasels and a trade representative unit of the White House, with almost all of Congress barred from reviewing the document.

tpp_0.jpg

US Rep. Keith Ellison (DFL-MN5) spoke out against the TPP as a secret process saying it should be occurring in public. Josh Wise from MN Fair Trade Coalition did a great job emceeing the panel and covering a lot of detailed ground including the intellectual property leaked provisions of the draft treaty of doom. (FB MN Fair Trade)

One of them, Jim Harkness, was from the Institute for Agriculture and Trade Policy, which has achieved a lot of laudable changes in trade for small communities around the world, and non-gazillionaires in general. Unedited Video URL: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=__Nmry3Hm_0

Full video unedited. Sorry about the bad sound sync. This video is licensed: CREATIVE COMMONS WITH ATTRIBUTION. Please Remix!! :)

Also I was able to get in the last question on the QA, proposing Rep. Ellison should post a bill to US Congress that would make it illegal for the trade representative to hold any secret documents longer than one month, which would neatly solve the authoritarian secret treaty problem, and enable all Americans to participate in US diplomatic policy processes on a far more equal basis than the current situation :)TPP_WhySoSecret.jpg

Mon., July 1, 6:00 pm - 7:30 pm

Minneapolis Regional Labor Federation

312 Central Avenue

2nd Floor

Minneapolis, Minnesota

FB: Keith Ellison explains the TPP: The largest corporate power grab you've never heard of!

LINX:U.S. Senator calls for more transparency around the Trans-Pacific Partnership | OpenMedia.ca

Home | Our Fair Deal

Senator Warren Presses White House to Release Pacific Trade Text - Businessweek

Time for transparency - why don’t Canadian representatives have same access to crucial TPP drafts as their U.S. counterparts? | OpenMedia.ca

Canada’s two-tier approach to trade talks: Geist | Toronto Star

Digital Rights Groups Shut Out of Secret TPP Negotiations | Electronic Frontier Foundation

Trans Pacific Partnership Agreement | Electronic Frontier Foundation

Take Action - petition

Reassess Trans-Pacific Partnership Agreement - Columnist - New Straits Times

The BRAD BLOG : Rep. Grayson Warns About Details of Classified 'Trans-Pacific Partnership' Agreement

Trans-Pacific Partnership (TPP): 18th Round of TPP Negotiations Set for Kota Kinabalu, Malaysia -- July 15-24, 2013 | Office of the United States Trade Representative - OFFICIAL SITE

Warren on Trans-Pacific Partnership: If people knew what was going on, they would stop it | The Raw Story

LEAKED DOCS FROM LAST JUNE: U.S. trade proposal would let corporations overrule laws | The Raw Story

Alan Grayson On Trans-Pacific Partnership: Obama Secrecy Hides 'Assault On Democratic Government' - way to go Alan! Glad he's throwing some punches on this crap.

Obama-Backed Trans-Pacific Partnership Expands Corporate Lawsuits Against Nations for Lost Profits | Democracy Now! - JUNE 6 2013

The Obama administration is facing increasing scrutiny for the extreme secrecy surrounding negotiations around a sweeping new trade deal that could rewrite the nation’s laws on everything from healthcare and Internet freedom to food safety and the financial markets. The latest negotiations over the Trans-Pacific Partnership (TPP) were recently held behind closed doors in Lima, Peru, but the Obama administration has rejected calls to release the current text. Even members of Congress have complained about being shut out of the negotiation process. Last year, a leaked chapter from the draft agreement outlined how the TPP would allow foreign corporations operating in the United States to appeal key regulations to an international tribunal. The body would have the power to override U.S. law and issue penalties for failure to comply with its rulings.

We discuss the TPP with two guests: Celeste Drake, a trade policy specialist with the AFL-CIO, and Jim Shultz, executive director of the Democracy Center, which has just released a new report on how corporations use trade rules to seize resources and undermine democracy. "What is the biggest threat to the ability of corporations to go into a country and suck out the natural resources without any regard for the environment or labor standards? The threat is democracy," Shultz says. "The threat is that citizens will be annoying and get in the way and demand that their governments take action. So what corporations need is to become more powerful than sovereign states. And the way they become more powerful is by tangling sovereign states in a web of these trade agreements."

The Trans-Pacific Partnership Agreement & copyright. "Many of the same special interests that pushed for legislation like SOPA and PIPA have special access to this forum—including privileged access to the text as well as US negotiators."


newTPP map cropped.jpg

Lots more info:: Trans-Pacific Partnership

Anyway leave it there for now. BIG DEAL, PEOPLE!! This is from the "secret government" if anything is, and will supersede whole swaths of the Constitution and assorted natural rights of people around much of the world Shock doctrine par excellence.

Sprawling interview w wtfrly.com on activist news, next week on The Rundown Live

Alright here's a link if you want to check out. Super long like 2.3hr interview with WTFRLY.com editor Baran Hines covering lots of stuff on police state materials, local goings on including DRE.

Had a mention of the shady MnSCU shutdown of organic agriculture training, Turkey, Brazil, activist media organizing you name it. I have been trying to help out WTFRLY now and then, there is no shortage of stuff getting put through there including some fun deep research items.

Also talked about Syria, middle eastern scenario, name dropped Graham Fuller, a key CIA figure apparently involved in 9-11 and close to the Chechen family accused of running the recent attacks in Boston. [Sibel Edmonds named Fuller in her rogue's gallery of 9-11 people as well]

Includes also a little bit at the end about the Integral Community Exchange System for alternative time banking and barter that I have been working on cleanup / Drupal basics this summer in my spare time.

On Monday I am scheduled to do an interview with The RunDownLive with Mike P - sort of We Are Change Milwaukee, therundownlive.com , bigpzone.com, twitter.com/bigpzone. There was funny stuff with Stew Webb on here earlier.

Also the Drug Recognition Evaluator program lawsuit is going to federal court in July. Get info on it at http://nathanmhansen.blogspot.com from my friend Nathan Hansen who is pursuing the case. [disclosure: I did a bit of design work for Hansen in years past. Not very much but worth noting.]

Anyway nothing too grand but I figure it's good to do some casual long form interviews about some deep subjects for a change.

Idle No More in Minneapolis: First indigenous protest vs new Canadian repression in the United States - The Seventh Fire isn't just an Anishinaabe thing!

On Wednesday, Dec 19th, indigenous and allies launched the first protest in the United States in solidarity with their kin further north in what is known today as Canada. Prime Minister Harper basically decreed a bunch of lakes critical to indigenous survival are no longer environmentally protected, which clears the way to their destruction at the hands of the tar sands-oriented petrochemical industry.

According to Robert DesJarlait (talking in the first video) the US/Canadian border is becoming more restricted for natives/shut down right now & border protests have been called as well.

Unedited / Creative Commons with attribution to HongPong or Dan Feidt. Unfortunately was not able to livestream it - either maple syrup-powered EMP cannons or the relatively mild cold interfered with power levels. Technology not cooperating with me lately - not easy to edit FlipCam clips either :-/ I have not videotaped any protests in quite a while & this one was really inspiring, I was lucky to be involved in any way.

Later in the day at the American Indian Center I also saw representatives from Red Lake reservation leaving for the site of the school shooting in Connecticut in solidarity with those victims, since Red Lake had its own disastrous school shooting in 2005.

I wish our indigenous brothers and sisters the best of luck struggling against the power structures in both these nationstates which are determined to strip them of dignity and the means to survive autonomously in harmony with nature.

Also our colleague Will already posted three videos as well - this one has the most views - http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=06xImpIKyDc - get the rest on his channel. Here's the original event post on Facebizzle with a bunch of comments and links.

On Friday the Day of Action for Idle No More will be starting - where else? in Egypt! Idle No More day of action Friday will begin in Egypt | APTN National News. Drum circles for noon Mountain time zone have been called so I believe there will be a protest at 1PM around Minnehaha Park/Coldwater Springs though I am not sure of where exactly.

I like this one - it's 18 minutes totally unedited, the last song and going up in the elevator to the Consulate & most of that time in there. Watch Harper's Canadian consular staff lurk behind their thick walls & bulletproof glass, taking cell pics and dipping!

MORE LINX:

http://idlenomore1.blogspot.com/

http://idlenomore.tumblr.com/post/38329891610/idle-no-more-support-rally...

http://thelapine.ca/obama-calls-harper-large-lump

https://www.facebook.com/events/205119732946505/?ref=3

http://aptn.ca/pages/news/2012/12/19/idle-no-more-day-of-action-friday-w...

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=06xImpIKyDc

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=TsSUkwZ1VZg

http://idlenomore.makook.ca/

Friday, December 21, 2012

Idle No More - PARLIAMENT HILL- OTTAWA

http://www.facebook.com/events/437759016287760/

Friday, December 21, 2012

Idle No More, Solidarity Action -LONDON, UNITED KINGDOM

http://www.facebook.com/events/458961510829311/

Friday, December 21, 2012

IDLE NO MORE: Peace River Region -BRITISH COLUMBIA

http://www.facebook.com/events/492285850793858/

Sunday, December 23, 2012

Idle No More -VANCOUVER

http://www.facebook.com/events/539740012721038/

Saturday, December 22, 2012

Idle No More -HAMILTON, ONTARIO

http://www.facebook.com/events/448076668589295/

Friday, December 21, 2012

Idle No More rally- PRINCE ALBERT- SASKATCHEWAN

https://www.facebook.com/events/127655597393724/

Friday, December 21, 2012

IDLE NO MORE - WINNIPEG NATIONAL EVENT

https://www.facebook.com/events/551422504885143/

Friday, December 21, 2012

IDLE NO MORE -SASKATOON

http://www.facebook.com/events/123368197825076/

Friday, December 21, 2012

"IDLE NO MORE" PROTEST - MONTREAL

http://www.facebook.com/events/430768096977486/

Friday, December 21, 2012

Idle No More Rally - OWEN SOUND

http://www.facebook.com/events/307840622669177/

Friday, December 21, 2012

IDLE NO MORE - SAN FRANCISCO

RALLY SOLIDARITY WITH CANADIAN FIRST NATIONS

https://www.facebook.com/events/374271672664448/

Friday, December 21, 2012

IDLE NO MORE - LOS ANGELES -

RALLY IN SOLIDARITY WITH CANADIAN FIRST NATIONS

http://www.facebook.com/events/349497715147942/

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Here are a few pics, one I found and the two from Weds. posted by Robert DesJarlait. They overflow my blog border but you can right-click to save them!

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37108_10200140052845968_5920830_n.jpg

Bilderberg conference, evil Prince Bernhard, the Junkers & long arc of German agenda

In the aftermath of the infamous Bilderberg Conference, I would like to throw this essay out there about the long arc of everything from the Hanseatic League to the European Common Market and European Union.

It's jumping off from an old book, The Thousand Year Conspiracy, published during WWII which pointed out that Hitler's days were numbered but the geopolitical agenda of eastern German aristocracy would keep on rolling - and it certainly did in many respects. The book:

http://spitfirelist.com/books/winkler1a.pdf

http://spitfirelist.com/books/winkler1b.pdf

If you thought German policy over the decades was just kind of a void, lurching from the Kaiser and Krupp to the Nazis, this was an interesting take on a certain coherency I wasn't really aware of. (and the so-called "Windsor" family controlling Britain isn't really addressed but ties right in).

The essay: http://explosivereports.com/2012/05/28/ancient-roots-of-bilderberg-reveal-prusso-teutonic-agenda-for-world-domination/

It also gets to the filthy schemes of Dutch Prince Bernhard who has been the main mover on Bilderberg since the get-go, a classic Junker German aristocrat, setting up the corrupt corporatist greenwashing front World Wildlife Fund for Nature [sic].

I think we get a lot about bureaucrats, banks and nationalism but the long arc of aristocracy is usually written off from state-side analysis of Europe. While this writeup might be a little bit too 'pat', are there other sources along similar lines looking at long-run aristocrat geopolitical schemes?

Don't miss this writeup on the WWF 1001 Club which is full of crazed Iran Contra arms dealer types - http://www.undovedmind.org/ISGP/articles/organisations/1001_Club.htm . ISGP was a wonderful site & I'm glad it's archived now.

Der Spiegel just blew WWF out of the water for its racist corporatist policies destroying native cultures & promoting extractive soybean monocultures, etc - don't miss this story either.

UPDATE June 5th: I found a few more roundup posts on Bilderberg for the interested. MEDIAROOTS – Reporting From Outside Party Lines Abby Martin roundup // The Final Day At Bilderberg 2012 With Luke Rudkowski // Bilderberg: the covert globalist government? RT // Washington Post Finally Breaks ‘Bilderberg’ Silence | American Free Press and they mention Minnesota's own consigliere, Vin Weber // Activist Post: The Global Elite’s Digital Agenda Played Out as Censorship and Cyber Warfare // real economics: Bilderberg 2012—a gathering of the mega-Predators // Protest groups converge to denounce secretive Bilderberg conference | The Raw Story // Bilderberg 2012 - Caledonia, WI Patch // The Media is Dead….Long Live the Media (Bilderberg 2012 Review) // Occupy Bilderberg: An Experiment in Activist Journalism // Good stuff!

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