So, former President Bill Clinton, one of the better men, or women to inhabit the White House, said Monday that he wouldn't hesitate to raise the debt ceiling without congressional approval! Clinton told the National Memo that he would invoke that constitutional option without hesitation, and force the courts to stop him, if Congress and the White House fail to reach an agreement to raise the debt ceiling by the August 2 deadline, when the US Treasury says the government will begin to default on its debts. That's a much stronger language than anything we've heard from the sitting president during the grinding debate over whether and how the debt ceiling can be raised. Some legal thinkers, including Clinton himself take the view that the Constitution grants the president the authority to raise the limit by executive order without Congress's approval The Fourteenth Amendment states: "the validity of the public debt of the United States shall not be questioned." According to Clinton, the Constitution is clear, but many other lawmakers and legal scholars dispute that interpretation. They argue that the president cannot force payment for appropriations under the Constitution's language. There's little doubt, in any event, that President Obama face a major uproar from GOP leaders and their supporters if he were to bypass Congress. Because of this, Obama has chosen to avoid addressing whether he would invoke that option.
As if the citizens of our US don't have enough on our plate: Suddenly, Islamabad is on the verge of being classified as part of the "Axis of Evil", with the head of the joint chiefs, Admiral Mullen, openly accusing the Pakistanis of "sanctioning" the killing of a journalist, and allying with a faction of the Taliban. Since when does a military man, the titular uniformed head of the US armed force, speak out on such sensitive political matters? Why, when he has the full backing of the White House, which obviously has plans for the Pakistanis. The new accusations add fuel to the fire started by the "supposed discovery" of Osama bin Laden's "Abbottabad lair". The sad truth is that Osama has been dead for many, many years. When Obama, as usual, lied to us about that, in the vain possibility that his "handlers" wanted to retain his "supposed credibility" for the gullible US audience, or, at least the morons who were stupid enough to vote for him. As you can probably tell from my sarcasm, I DID NOT!!! The new accusations add fuel to the fire of Osama's untimely death. The plentiful Pakistan-haters in the administration, of which there are now plenty, were quick to to draw the conclusion that even the gullible toady's (persons who obsequiously flatter or defer to others for the sake of personal gain,) -ie: sycophants. Unfortunately for Obama, it is well known that al-Qaeda operatives have been living in the US for years, though apparently undetected by our "efficient" CIA! Heck, FBI agents in the field warned Washington after one of the "terrorists" took flight training lessons, and was reported for suspicious activities. The ultimate prize for US imperialism in the Middle East, the jewel in the crown of the emerging American "EMPIRE", is Iran, long the chief target of the War Party's, and Israelis' attention!
America's dirty war targets Blacks, Latinos, Native Americans, political activists, and Muslims for their faith, ethnicity, prominence and charity, exploiting them as "war on terror" scapegoats. On July 9, a Press TV US prison system racket interview highlighted the problem and urgency to address it. America's media ignore how unjustly it harms millions of disadvantaged people. Why Muslims, when, in fact, Islam teaches love, not hate; peace, not violence; tolerance, not terrorism; or that Islam, Christianity and Judaism have common roots. Who would know though in today's climate of hate and fear at a time America wages global wars on Islam, including at home. Ahmed Abdulkadir Warsame is America's latest high-profile target, illegally captured, interrogated, probably tortured at sea for over two months , based on spurious allegations of Islamic terrorist ties. Post 9/11, the same pattern repeated ruthlessly against hundreds of innocent victims. Pronounced guilty by accusation, America's media shamelessly regurgitated fabricated hate charges, not legitimate honest accounts, doing what good journalists should do - their job. On July 5, New York Times writers Charlie Savage and Eric Schmitt headlined, "US to Prosecute Somali Suspect in Civilian Court," saying: Obama's Justice Department will: "prosecute Warsame in civilian court," likely reigniting debate about whether to bring newly captured detainees to Guantanamo, try them before military commissions, or do it "in civilian court." While admitting Warsame plotted no attack, and that administration officials gave contradictory accounts of his importance, the article presumed guilt by accusation. It failed to question whether or not charges are legitimate, let alone his illegal capture, detention, interrogation, and likely torture at sea secretly for over two months.
An experienced CIA officer who spent 21years in the Middle East, predicts that Israel will bomb Iran this fall. When the CIA officer appeared on the Los Angeles show: Background Briefing, hosted by Ian Masters, he predicted that Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu is likely to go to war with Iran in the very near future. Though he refuses to name his sources in Israel and the United States, where Israel is cowed to by crooked elements of the Obama government, has not confirmed the CIA officer's statement, I predict that a strike by the Israelis will seal the fate of that nasty little country (Israel). When asked about what would happen in the aftermath of an Israeli attack, Dagan said: "It will be followed by a war with Iran. Though no one knows how it starts, we have a very good idea of how it will end": "Israel will be reduced to a tiny cinder, and what is left of our population will be brutally incinerated. The Iranians have the capability to fire rockets at Israel for a period of months, and Hizbollah could fire tens of thousands of grad rockets and hundreds of long-range missiles." Dagan describes the current Israeli government as "dangerous and irresponsible", and views speaking out against Netanyahu as his patriotic duty! His abhorrence of Netanyahu is NOT uncommon in the Israeli security establishment. According to Think Progress, citing the "Forward" newspaper, 12 of the 18 living ex-chiefs of Israel's two security agencies - Mossad and Shin Bet - are either actively opposing Netanyahu's stances or have spoken out against them. Of the remaining six, two are current ministers in the Netanyahu government, leaving a grand total of four out of 18 who independently support the prime minister. In short, while Congress dutifully gives Netanyahu 29 standing ovations, the Israelis who know the most about both Netanyahu and Israel's strategic situation think he is a dangerous disaster. But, according to Bear, "we ain't seen nothing yet". There is almost a near certainty that Netanyahu is planning an attack on Iran, and it will probably be in September before the vote on a Palestinian state. As usual, he is also hoping to draw the United States into the conflict!!!
Late Hune 2011, the Greek government passed another round of austerity measures, supposedly to get Greece "back on track" to economic progress, but in reality, to implement a systematic program of "social genocide", in the name of servicing an endless and illegitimate debt to foreign banks. Right on cue, protests and riots broke out in Athens against the draconian measures, and the state moved in, to do what it does best: Oppress the people with riot police, tear gas and batons, leaving roughly 300 people injured! Is Greece simply a case of a country full of lazy people, who spent beyond their means, and who are now paying for their own decadence? Or, is there something much larger at stake "and at play" here? Greece is, in fact, a microcosm of the global economy: Mired in excessive debt, economically ruined, increasingly politically repressive and socially explosive. This report takes a look at the case of the Greek debt crisis specifically, and places it within a wider global context: The conclusion is clear: What happens in Greece WILL happen here. With the global economic crisis rampaging throughout the world in 2008, Greece experienced major protests and riots at government reactions to the crisis. The unpopularity of the government led to an election in which a Socialist government came to power in October of 2009 under the premise of promising an injection of 3 billion euros in order to revive the Greek economy. When the government came to power, they inherited a debt that was double that which the previous government had disclosed. This prompted Greece's entry into a major debt crisis, since the debt was roughly 127% of Greece's GDP in 2009, and thus the costs of borrowing rose exponentially! In April of 2010, Greece had to seek a bailout by the EU and the IMF. Greece ultimately incurred a larger long-term debt, since the money from these institutions simply added to the overall debt, and thus actually increased eventual interest payments on that debt. Thus, we see the true nature of debt: A financial form of slavery. Debt is deliberately designed in a way, so that, like a fly trapped by a spider in his web, the more it struggles, the more he becomes entangled in the web, and the more it struggles to gain its freedom, the more it arouses the attention of the spider, who traps the fly in its silk net, and now has plenty of time to eat the fly alive! The nature of debt is that one is never meant to be able to escape it!
Surge, bribe and run? Among multiple layers of deception and "newspeak", the official Washington spin about our quagmire in Afghanistan simply does not hold: According to our CIA, there are no more than 5o to 75 'al-Qaeda" operatives in Afghanistan, who are responsible for draining our US government by no less than $10 billion a month, or $12o billion a year. Unfortunately, US Defense Secretary Robert Gates has been adamant that withdrawing troops from Afghanistan is premature. The Pentagon wants the White House to hold off on ending the Afghan troop surge until the fall of 2012. That, of course, shadows the fact that even if there were a full draw down, the final result would be the same number of US troops before the Obama administration ordered the Af-Pak surge. Even if there were some sort of draw down, it would mostly impact troops in supporting roles. Right now, there are already over 100,000 "private contractors", (a euphemism for mercenaries). A recent, detailed study by the Eisenhower Research Project at Brown University revealed that the "war on terror" is costing our country a staggering $5.4 Trillion, plus another $4.4 Trillion!
Is Obama the "man from La Mancha"? Chris Preble's piece about fragile and reversible gains provides excellent insight into a frequently heard theme of discord concerning military operations overseas, and into how arguments to extend those often stray from a sober consideration of the costs and benefits of doing so. The yearning to go beyond minimal accomplishments of military objectives and to try to achieve something grander and more lasting is partly rooted in universal human psychology, such as the disinclination to treat sunk costs as TRULY SUNK!!! Preble even refers to Pericles as having voiced one of the themes in question. The tendency to keep stretching for absolute, irreversible victories is, however, disproportionately American! This tendency is more pronounced among Americans than among others, for reasons related to the unique circumstances and history of the United States. Living in a peculiarly powerful and successful republic makes it easier to believe that the nation really "can" achieve absolute, irreversible victories. Sure, the United States has had failures, including some REALLY big ones such as the Vietnam War, but even that costly failure, given the passage of time, and of generations and the attitudinal balm of a splendid victory, such as "Operation Desert Storm" - the reversal in 1991 of the Iraqi seizure of Kuwait - has not prevented restoration of hubristic optimism about what the United States can use its power to accomplish. One of the reactions to Desert Storm - specifically, the neoconservative reaction, featured once again the idea that accomplishment of a limited military aim is not enough, and that the United States should "go for the gold". Reversing Saddam Hussein's aggression was not enough to sate the neocon's hunger for something even grander in the Middle East, involving the elimination of Saddam altogether! That hunger, coupled with an arrogant belief in the ability to accomplish a big, irreversible victory, led to another costly military adventure a decade later.
Lately, the media was full of it: I mean the reports of how happy stock market days were here again. After a stormy start, June closed and July began with US benchmark indexes racking up their biggest weekly gains in two years on good news: The US manufacturing index had unexpectedly risen, and the beleaguered debt-burdened Greeks were bailed out yet again, piling up un-payable new debt on top of un-payable old debt! Yes, there was some concern, but, as the New York Times reported on June 25th, "Two years into the official recovery, the economy is still behaving like a plane taxiing indefinitely on the runway. Few economists are predicting an out-and-out return to recession, but analysts generally expect the economy to pick up in the second half." The economists were forecasting strong job growth for June, but two weeks later, when the numbers came in, the Bureau of Labor Statistics reported that only 18,000 jobs had been created, not the 125,000 jobs projected, by those same economists who were also not predicting an out and out return to recession. Accordingly, without missing a beat, The Times changed its tune, writing new words to replace the old words they would never be forced to eat: "Feeble Job Numbers Show Recovery Starting to Stall". "Defying Economists Forecast for Hiring, Unemployment Creeps Up to 9.2%! For the second consecutive month, employers added scarcely any jobs in June, startling evidence that the economic recovery is stumbling. The government also revised downward the small gain for the previous month to 25,000 new jobs, less than half the original estimate!
According to a veteran CIA officer, Rober Baer, and the "JerusalemPost", former Mossad chief Meir Danag warns that the Israeli "attack" is no bluff. Baer told KPFK Los Angeles in a "Background Briefing" that an Israeli attack on Iran could lead to a regional war (yo think??). It's probably going to be in September, before a vote on the "Palestinian Issue". Baer added that Netanyahu is also hoping to draw the United States into the conflict, but without the assistance of the survivors of Israel's bombing of the USS Liberty, whose SOS I found on a Twix while I was the Intelligence Operations Officer of our 4th US armored division in Goeppingen, Germany. At the time, General Sherrer, the commander of our division looked at me briefly, and commented: "With friends like Israel, we have no need of enemies!!! The retired CIA officer predicted a scenario in which Israel would attack the Natanz nuclear facility, as well as "a couple of others to degrade their capabilities." "The Iranians will strike back where they can, and that will be in Basra and Baghdad where the US has a diminished troop presence, Baer said, adding "we've started to to look at Iran's targets in Iraq and across the border." Baer however diffused predictions of regional war, saying "What we're facing here is an escalation, not a planned all-out war." (Yeah, RIGHT!!!)
The second international conference on nuclear disarmament hosted by Tehran gets barely a mention in the Western media, despite featuring delegates from 40 nations as well as representatives from both the United Nations and its nuclear watchdog, the International Atomic Energy Agency (IAEA). "What we want to convey is a message to the entire world, that Iran is trying its best for this argument for non-proliferation." Iranian Foreign Minister Ali Akbar Salchi told the audience in an opening address on Sunday. Forty years on non-proliferation conventions had produced no significant breakthrough in nuclear disarmament, and the nuclear powers have not implemented their obligation under the nuclear Non-Proliferation Treaty (NPT), he said, adding that Iran believed that the use of atomic weapons should be legally banned, as chemical and biological weapons were through mandatory conventions, he said. As Iran gears up to assume leadership of the Non-Aligned Movement (NAM) next year, such an initiative represents a step in the right direction, in light of the NAM countries' strong misgivings about nuclear double standards on the part of Western countries and the growing restrictions on the transfer of nuclear technology for peaceful purposes, pursuant to articles of the NPT. As expected, some Western "pundits", such as David Frum, the man behind George W Bush's notorious "axis of evil" speech, cast a cynical gaze at the Tehran disarmament conference, describing it as a "theater of the absurd". What seems MORE absurd to many is the simple fact that with the tens of thousands of nuclear warheads still in existence presenting a calamitous potential for human existence and planetary survival, so little attention has been placed in the West on practical mechanisms to achieve the lofty objective of "a world without nuclear weapons".