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News May 2012

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Thursday & Friday May 31 & June 01, 2012
International News

Greece Faces Electric Meltdown
ZeroHedge | Author | 06/01/12

From Reuters:  Greece's power regulator RAE told Reuters on Friday it was calling an emergency meeting next week to avert a collapse of the debt-stricken country's electricity and natural gas system.  "RAE is taking crisis initiatives throughout next week to avert the collapse of the natural gas and electricity system," the regulator's chief Nikos Vasilakos told Reuters.  RAE took the decision after receiving a letter from Greece's natural gas company DEPA, which threatened to cut supplies to electricity producers if they failed to settle their arrears with the company.

Or, as they call it in Greece, Friday. ... Read more

Europe must prepare an emergency plan
FinancialTimes | Robert Zoellick | 05/31/12

Eurozone leaders may be nearing a "break the glass" moment: when one smashes the pane protecting the emergency fire alarm. While those living in the eurozone building, especially those on the executive floors, will not want to hear an alarm, they had best read the instructions. Events in Greece could trigger financial fright in Spain, Italy, and across the eurozone, pushing Europe into a danger zone. ... Read more

Domestic News

JOBS REPORT DISASTER
HuffingtonPost | CHRISTOPHER S. RUGABER | 06/01/12

Jobs Report May 2012: U.S. Employers Added 69,000 Jobs In May As The Unemployment Rate Rose To 8.2 Percent ... Read more

Dow Average Erases 2012 Advance After Employment Data
Bloomfield | Rita Nazareth | 06/01/12

U.S. stocks tumbled, erasing the 2012 advance in the Dow Jones Industrial Average, as employers added the fewest workers in a year, the unemployment rate rose while manufacturing output shrank in Europe and slowed in China. ... Read more

SEC: Taking on Big Firms is 'Tempting,' But We Prefer Whaling on Little Guys
RollingStone | Matt Taibbi | 05/30/12

... It's by now been well-established that the S.E.C.'s performance in policing Wall Street before, after, and during the crash has been comically inept. It would be putting it generously to say that the top cop on the financial services beat has demonstrated particular incompetence with regard to investigations of high-profile targets at powerhouse banks and financial companies. ... Read more

Obama Order Sped Up Wave of Cyberattacks Against Iran
NewYorkTimes | DAVID E. SANGER | 06/01/12

AFrom his first months in office, President Obama secretly ordered increasingly sophisticated attacks on the computer systems that run Iran's main nuclear enrichment facilities, significantly expanding America's first sustained use of cyberweapons, according to participants in the program

Mr. Obama decided to accelerate the attacks -- begun in the Bush administration and code-named Olympic Games -- even after an element of the program accidentally became public in the summer of 2010 because of a programming error that allowed it to escape Iran's Natanz plant and sent it around the world on the Internet. Computer security experts who began studying the worm, which had been developed by the United States and Israel, gave it a name: Stuxnet. ... Read more

Nevada GOP Shadow Party Elbows Past Feud With Ron Paul
HuffingtonPost | Jon Ward | 06/01/12

LAS VEGAS --- Near the foothills of the Spring Mountains, 20 minutes west of the Vegas strip, the shadow Republican party of Nevada is building out its command center in a shopping plaza on the edge of town.

This is, apparently, what happens to the Republican Party establishment when Ron Paul supporters take over a state party, as they have here in the Silver State.  The question is, will Mitt Romney's chances in this battleground state --- which top Democrats here admit will be a tight race to the finish --- be hurt by the ongoing rift within the state between supporters of Paul, the Texas congressman and presidential candidate, and establishment Republicans? ... Read more

DemocracyNow Daily News
Democracy Now! National and Global News Headlines for Friday, June 1 [10:40]
Democracy Now! National and Global News Headlines for Thursday, May 31 [11:03]
DN | Florida Rep. Ted Deutch on Banning Corporate Campaign Money Post-Citizens United (06/01/12) [2:57]
El-Erian: Global Leaders Are `Losing Control' (06/01/12) [3:35]

Dow Jones Now Red For 2012
ZeroHedge | Author | 06/01/12

Read more

Diane Rehms Show
Diane Rehm Domestic News - Friday 06/01/12
International News - Friday 06/01/12
Older, but Good Interviews
DN | Mark Ames and Mike Elk on The Nation Article: "Big Brothers: Thought Control at Koch." Part 1 (04/21/11) [12:52] Part 2 [4:27]
DN | Gretchen Morgenson & Joshua Rosner on Democracy Now! on the Causes of the Financial Crisis. Part 1 (06/02/11) [14:31] Part 2 [6:05]
Dylan Ratigan | Corporate Communism: Intervewis Mark Ames (10/07/09) [5:24]
Opinion Articles

A diabolical mix of US wages and European austerity
FinancialTimes | Robert Reich | 05/30/12

Article

What if Europe and the US converged on a set of economic policies that brought out the worst in both -- European fiscal austerity combined with a declining share of total income going to workers? Given political realities on both sides of the Atlantic, it is entirely possible.  So far, the US has avoided the kind of budget cuts that have pushed much of Europe into recession. Growth on this side of the pond is expected to be around 2.4 per cent this year. And jobs are recovering, albeit painfully slowly.

But a tough bout of fiscal austerity could be coming in six months. The non-partisan Congressional Budget Office warned last week that if the Bush tax cuts expire on schedule at the start of 2013, just as $100bn of budget cuts automatically take effect under the deal to raise the debt ceiling that Democrats and Republicans agreed to last August, the US will fall into recession in the first half of next year. ... Read more

Ruby-0n-Rails Installer

Wednesday May 30, 2012
International News

Most Aid to Athens Circles Back to Europe
NewYorkTimes | A LIZ ALDERMAN | 05/29/12

Its membership in the euro currency union hanging in the balance, Greece continues to receive billions of euros in emergency assistance from a so-called troika of lenders overseeing its bailout.

But almost none of the money is going to the Greek government to pay for vital public services. Instead, it is flowing directly back into the troika's pockets .. Read more

Italian auction reinforces eurozone woes
FinancialTimes | Robin Wigglesworth | 05/30/12

Italy's 10-year bond yields breached the 6 per cent mark for the first time since January, and Spain's 10-year yields rose close to a new euro-era high, as limp demand at an Italian debt auction reinforced fears over the eurozone's financial crisis. ... Read more

Domestic News

Morgan Stanley derivatives switch hits hold-up
FinancialTimes | Tom Braithwaite | 05/29/12/span>

Morgan Stanley's plan to shift a large chunk of its $52tn derivatives portfolio into the part of the group backed by customer deposits is facing regulatory obstacles, according to people familiar with the situation

But regulators have not yet ruled on the request. Under a lengthier process introduced by the Dodd-Frank financial reforms, the Fed is required to formally consult on such moves with the Federal Deposit Insurance Corp, complicating the issue.  The Fed, which oversees Morgan Stanley as a financial group and looks to safeguard the stability of the broader financial system, has a different mandate from the FDIC, whose concern is safeguarding bank deposits. ... Read more

Analysis: Investors may be stoking the volatility they fear
BloomberReutersg | Mike Dolan | 05/30/12

Long-term investors fearful of another global financial storm may be better prepared than they were before Lehman Brothers went bust in 2008, but their increasingly nervous disposition could itself be making markets more fragile. ... Read more

Pulling Punches? Inside Job Director Charles Ferguson Indicts Our 'Predator Nation'
TRNN | Danny Schechter | 05/29/12

Comment: This is an interesting article by Danny Schechter, that kind of bounces around, but altimately wonders how we can make Chales Ferguson's "Predator Nation" more publicized.

When I first saw Ferguson's film, coming out two years after my Plunder: The Crime Of Our Time on a similar subject, I was a bit jealous because of all the support he attracted from Sony and Hollywood insiders who waged a successful Oscar campaign on its behalf. He had access to big money for a film on big money, after selling a software company. He could afford high production values but also the kind of marketing that Indy filmmakers like myself dream about. ...

Read more

Google 2.4% Rate Shows How $60 Billion Lost to Tax Loopholes
Bloomberg | Jesse Drucker | 10/21/10

Google Inc. cut its taxes by $3.1 billion in the last three years using a technique that moves most of its foreign profits through Ireland and the Netherlands to Bermuda. ... Read more

Why US firms are moving to Ireland
IrishTimes.com | Author | 02/21/12

... US companies were behind almost 40 per cent of offices bought or leased in Dublin last year and the trend is likely to accelerate this year. ... Read more

DemocracyNow Daily News
Democracy Now! National and Global News Headlines for Wednesday, May 30 [9:34]
DN | Glenn Greenwald: Obama's Secret Kill List "The Most Radical Power a Government Can Seize" (05/30/12) [6:43]
DN | "Inside Job" Director Charles Ferguson: Wall Street Has Turned US Into a "Predatory Nation" (05/29/12) [21:51]
Irish Asterity
TRNN | Economist: The Irish referendum: Battle of conflicting ideas (05/29/12) [4:25]
Punk Economics: Irish Referendum Preview (05/29/12) [9:28]
Comment: it is interesting that Ireland is still having such problems, even after many American companies (600) have shifted their headquarters there, along with over 100,000 jobs.
See: the 8:31 minutes mark, on the progess bar, in the 60 Minutes documentary below.
60 Minutes | American companies are finding new overseas tax havens to legally protect some of their profits from the U.S. tax rate of 35 percent, among the highest in the world. (08/14/11) [13:48]
Quebec Student Strike
TRNN | Protests Against Brutal Repression and Draconian Law in Quebec. Lawyers join students in protest against Quebec Bill 78 (05/30/12) [4:36]
TRNN | Quebec Student Movement Grows with Popular Support (05/29/12) [4:01]
Paul Jay from The Real News
interviews John Weeks on Europe and Austerity
TRNN | Fareed Zakaria's: Italian PM - Austerity Not Leading to Growth Part 2 (05/30/12) [15:53]
TRNN | Fareed Zakaria's: Neo-Liberal Defense of Germany Part 1 (05/29/12) [12:29]
New Space Race
BB | World's Biggest Jet to Fire SpaceX Rocket From Air (05/29/12) [1:00]

Tuesday May 29, 2012
International News

Director Of Spain's Failed Bankia To Leave With 13.8 Million Euro Termination
ZeroHedge | Author | 05/29/12

If those in charge are still confused why the general population is not very "appreciative" of the banker social substratum, the following example should provide some color. Following the ever greater public bailout fund black hole that Spain's Bankia has become (first of many zombies), we now learn that one of its financial directors, Aurelio Izquierdo, will be entitled to 14 million Euro in pension and termination benefits. Supposedly in compensation for running the bank straight into the ground after just one year of operation, and lying fabulously about its financial performance, in the process suckering in thousands into investing their hard earned cash so that oligarchs such as Aurelio can promptly retire to a non-extradition locale. ... Read more

"Ten Days Later" - Bankia: The Supreme Irony
ZeroHedge | Author | 05/29/12

Ten days later the discovery process is complete: Bankia is now the biggest bank failure in Spanish history.  Our question: will The Economist invoice for advertising services rendered be paid out of bailout funds? Or, like Aurelio Izquierdo's 14 million Euro termination payment, will this money come from "non-bailout money"? Read more

Domestic News

Consumer Confidence In U.S. Fell In May To Four-Month Low
Bloomberg | Timothy R. Homan | 05/29/12

The Conference Board's confidence index decreased to 64.9 from a revised 68.7 in the prior month, figures from the New York-based private research group showed today. The median forecast of economists surveyed by Bloomberg News called for a reading of 69.6. ... Read more

Barack Obama is facing his Jimmy Carter moment
TheTelegraph | Tim Stanley | 05/25/12

...But in the last two weeks, things have changed. Obama's re-election is no longer guaranteed; some pollsters think it is unlikely. Day by day, the odds are improving that Mitt Romney will be the next President of the United States.

What changed? For a start, voters are getting gloomier about the economy. Joblessness remains high and debt is out of control. According to one poll released this week, only 33 per cent of Americans expect the economy to improve in the coming months and only 43 per cent approve of the way that the president has handled it. Voters think Obama has made the debt situation and health care worse. The man who conducted the poll -- Democrat Peter Hart -- concluded that "Obama's chances for re-election... are no better than 50-50." ... Read more

Radioactive Bluefin Tuna: Japan Nuclear Plant Contaminated Fish Found Off California Coast
HuffingtonPost | ALICIA CHANG | 05/28/12

Across the vast Pacific, the mighty bluefin tuna carried radioactive contamination that leaked from Japan's crippled nuclear plant to the shores of the United States 6,000 miles away -- the first time a huge migrating fish has been shown to carry radioactivity such a distance.

"We were frankly kind of startled," said Nicholas Fisher, one of the researchers reporting the findings online Monday in the Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences. ... Read more

Secret 'Kill List' Proves a Test of Obama's Principles and Will
NewYorkTimes | JO BECKER | 05/29/12

This was the enemy, served up in the latest chart from the intelligence agencies: 15 Qaeda suspects in Yemen with Western ties. The mug shots and brief biographies resembled a high school yearbook layout. Several were Americans. Two were teenagers, including a girl who looked even younger than her 17 years.

... "How old are these people?" he asked, according to two officials present. "If they are starting to use children," he said of Al Qaeda, "we are moving into a whole different phase." ... Read more

The End of the Euro: A Survivor's Guide
HuffingtonPost | Simon Johnson| 05/27/12

In every economic crisis there comes a moment of clarity. In Europe soon, millions of people will wake up to realize that the euro-as-we-know-it is gone. Economic chaos awaits them. ... Read more

DemocracyNow Daily News

DN | "Inside Job" Director Charles Ferguson: Wall Street Has Turned US Into a "Predatory Nation" (05/29/12) [21:51]
Lyme Disease
Under Our Skin (2009) [1:44:18]
Dr. Joe Jemsek "Speaks the Truth" Speech () [9:40]
60 Minute Videos
60 Minutes | Congress: Trading stock on inside information? (11/13/11) [15:20]
60 Minutes | Congress: Trading stock on inside information? [article]
60 Minutes | Hard cases: Investigating rare & tough diseases (05/20/12) [12:38]
60 Minutes | Hard cases: Investigating rare & tough diseases [article]
60 Minutes | Israel's largest city is bordered on all sides by danger, but its residents now seem more focused on its beaches, bars, and booming high-tech industry. (05/20/12) [12:05]
60Minutes | Is the Air Force's F-22 fighter jet making pilots sick? (05/06/12) [14:19]
60Minutes | High joblessness in the home of U.S. space flight (04/01/12) [12:52]
60Minutes | Stuxnet: Computer worm opens new era of warfare (03/04/12) [14:55]
60Minutes | Ground Zero responders remember 9/11 (09/11/11) [16:20]
60 Minutes | 9/11 investigator Ali Soufan, who questioned Qaeda members after the attack Part 1 (09/11/11) [14:39], Part 2 [10:47]
60 Minutes | American companies are finding new overseas tax havens to legally protect some of their profits from the U.S. tax rate of 35 percent, among the highest in the world. (08/14/11) [13:48]
60 Minutes | The next housing shock (08/07/11) [14:03]
60 Minutes | Resurrecting Eden: In Iraq, where many biblical scholars place the Garden of Eden, Scott Pelley finds a water world where the Marsh Arabs are making a comeback after Saddam nearly destroyed the cradle of civilization. (07/24/11) [12:46]
60 Minutes | Jerusalem: City of David, Lesley Stahl reports from under the city of Jerusalem from a controversial archeological dig that has become a flashpoint in the Israeli-Palestinian conflict. (06/05/11) [13:40]

Friday May 26, 2012
International News

Dallara Says Greek Euro Exit May Exceed 1 Trillion Euros
Bloomberg | Andrew Davis | 05/25/12

The cost of Greece exiting the euro would be unmanageable and probably exceed the 1 trillion euros ($1.25 trillion) previously estimated by the Institute of International Finance, the group's managing director said.  The Washington-based IIF's projection from earlier this year is "a bit dated now" and "probably on the low side," Charles Dallara said in an interview in Rome today. "Those who think that Europe, and more broadly the global economy, are really prepared for a Greek exit should think again."

The European Central Bank's exposure to Greek liabilities is more than twice as big as the ECB's capital, said Dallara, who represented banks in their negotiations with the Greek government on its debt restructuring. As a result, he predicted the bank would be unable to provide liquidity and stabilize the euro-area financial sector.  "The ECB will be insolvent" if Greece were to exit the euro, Dallara said. "Europe would have to first and foremost recapitalize its central bank." ... Read more

Domestic News

Average CEO Pay 2011 Nearly $10 Million At Public Companies: AP Study
HuffingtonPost | CHRISTINA REXRODE |05/25/12

AP Study: Average Public Company CEO Earns Almost $10 Million A Year, Typical Worker Would Take 3,489 Years To Earn Top CEO's Wage... On Top Of Big Salaries, Companies Pile On Perks

The head of a typical public company made $9.6 million in 2011, according to an analysis by The Associated Press using data from Equilar, an executive pay research firm.  That was up more than 6 percent from the previous year, and is the second year in a row of increases. The figure is also the highest since the AP began tracking executive compensation in 2006. ... Read more

Egos and Immorality
NewYorkTimes | PAUL KRUGMAN | 05/24/12

In the wake of a devastating financial crisis, President Obama has enacted some modest and obviously needed regulation; he has proposed closing a few outrageous tax loopholes; and he has suggested that Mitt Romney's history of buying and selling companies, often firing workers and gutting their pensions along the way, doesn't make him the right man to run America's economy.

Wall Street has responded -- predictably, I suppose -- by whining and throwing temper tantrums. And it has, in a way, been funny to see how childish and thin-skinned the Masters of the Universe turn out to be. Remember when Stephen Schwarzman of the Blackstone Group compared a proposal to limit his tax breaks to Hitler's invasion of Poland? Remember when Jamie Dimon of JPMorgan Chase characterized any discussion of income inequality as an attack on the very notion of success?

But here's the thing: If Wall Streeters are spoiled brats, they are spoiled brats with immense power and wealth at their disposal. And what they're trying to do with that power and wealth right now is buy themselves not just policies that serve their interests, but immunity from criticism. ... Read more

Dragon Capsule, SpaceX Spacecraft, Set To Dock With ISS
HuffingtonPost | Timothy Stenovec | 05/25/12

The Dragon capsule, the unmanned spacecraft that was launched on SpaceX's Dragon 9 rocket early Tuesday morning, will attempt to dock with the International Space Station on Friday.  If successful, it will be the first private spacecraft to fly to the ISS.

Since entering orbit on Tuesday, the capsule has been examined to make sure it is fit to berth with the space station, undergoing tests on its thrusters and Absolute Global Positioning System, among others.  Early Thursday morning, the spacecraft successfully flew 1.6 miles below the space station.

Dragon began its approach to the space station around 3 a.m. EDT on Friday, according to NASA. Running slightly behind course, astronauts aboard the ISS will use the space station's robotic arm to grapple Dragon after 8 a.m. EDT, and the spacecraft will attach to the station. ... Read more

DemocracyNow Daily News
Democracy Now! National and Global News Headlines for Friday, May 25 [10:31]
DN | "Who's Killing Philly Public Schools?": Daniel Denvir on 60+ School Closings, Privatization (05/25/12) [10:26]
DN | Maple Spring: Nearly 1,000 Arrested As Mass Quebec Student Strike Passes 100th Day (05/25/12) [13:06]
Diane Rehms Show
Diane Rehm Domestic News - Friday 05/25/12
International News - Friday 05/25/12
Dylan Ratigan
I really like Charles Ferguson's "Inside Job", narrated by Matt Damon, and now he has a book "Preditor Nation".
Dylan Ratigan | Charles Ferguson, director of "Inside Job" talks about his new book "Preditor Nation" (05/24/12) [9:10]
Inside Job
Dylan Ratigan | Fawaz Gerges talks about his book "Obama and the Middle East" (05/24/12) [7:19]
Dylan Ratigan | Facebook falling stock after IPO, is it a sign of our corrupt financial system? (05/24/12) [9:13]
Dylan Ratigan | Peter Schiff, author of "The Real Crash:" talks about the ignorance over Capitalization. (05/24/12) [11:13]
Dylan Ratigan | Vermont Sen Bernie Sanders wanting to regulate conflict of interest having bankers on the FED board. (05/24/12) [8:15]
Dylan Ratigan | Michael Hirsh, National Journal correspondant, updates us on the war in Afghanistan. (05/24/12) [7:46]
SpaceX Breaking Ground/Space
Note: these videos are straight off the CBS website and you need to scroll down about 1 inch to center the video. 60 Minutes | SpaceX video (03/17/12) [14:59]
SpaceX became one of only four entities to put a space capsule into orbit and bring it back.(05/25/12)[3:01]

Thursday May 24, 2012
International News

Japan Gas Binge Ties Third-Biggest Economy To One Fuel
Bloomberg | Yuriy Humber | 05/24/12

Mitsubishi Corp. (8058) led purchases this year as trading and energy explorers bought gas properties in four countries and pledged at least $30 billion to develop deposits. They're capturing supplies to generate power after authorities idled the nation's 54 nuclear reactors since the Fukushima disaster.

The spending plans and closures, which doubled gas's share of the Japanese power mix to about 50 percent, tie the country to a single fuel more than any other major energy-consumer. While that leaves Japan vulnerable to rising prices in the years ahead, the world's third-biggest economy is gaining an advantage trading the fastest-growing fossil fuel for electricity. ... Read more

Domestic News

Obama Has to Explain Why Fairness Is Essential to Growth
HuffingtonPost | Robert Reich | 05/24/12

The Cory Booker imbroglio has ignited a silly but potentially pernicious debate in the Democratic Party between so-called "pro-growth centrists" who want the president to focus on how well he's done getting the economy back on its feet after the Bush administration almost knocked it out, and "pro-fairness populists" who want him to focus on the nation's widening inequality and Wall Street's (and Romney's) continuing role in generating profits for a few at the expense of almost everyone else.

Fairness isn't inconsistent with growth; it's essential to it. The only way the economy can grow and create more jobs is if prosperity is more widely shared.  The key reason why the recovery is so anemic is that so much income and wealth are now concentrated at the top is America's the vast middle class no longer has the purchasing power necessary to boost the economy. ... Read more

How Wall Street Killed Financial Reform
RollingStone | Matt Taibbi | 05/10/12

Two years ago, when he signed the Dodd-Frank Wall Street Reform and Consumer Protection Act, President Barack Obama bragged that he'd dealt a crushing blow to the extravagant financial corruption that had caused the global economic crash in 2008. "These reforms represent the strongest consumer financial protections in history," the president told an adoring crowd in downtown D.C. on July 21st, 2010. "In history."

This was supposed to be the big one. At 2,300 pages, the new law ostensibly rewrote the rules for Wall Street. It was going to put an end to predatory lending in the mortgage markets, crack down on hidden fees and penalties in credit contracts, and create a powerful new Consumer Financial Protection Bureau to safeguard ordinary consumers. Big banks would be banned from gambling with taxpayer money, and a new set of rules would limit speculators from making the kind of crazy-ass bets that cause wild spikes in the price of food and energy. There would be no more AIGs, and the world would never again face a financial apocalypse when a bank like Lehman Brothers went bankrupt.

Most importantly, even if any of that fiendish crap ever did happen again, Dodd-Frank guaranteed we wouldn't be expected to pay for it. "The American people will never again be asked to foot the bill for Wall Street's mistakes," Obama promised. "There will be no more taxpayer-funded bailouts. Period."

Two years later, Dodd-Frank is groaning on its deathbed. ... Read more

DemocracyNow Daily News
Democracy Now! National and Global News Headlines for Thursday, May 24 [12:29]
DN | With Control of Drone Strikes, Is Counterterror Chief John Brennan the "Assassination Czar"? (05/24/12) [16:05]
DN | Egyptian Voters on the Promise & Limits of Historic Election (Democracy Now!) (05/24/12) [10:35]
Eliot Spitzer
Eliot Spitzer | Charles Ferguson on how Harvard and other universities collude with the financial industry (05/22/12) [4:25]
Eliot Spitzer | Robert Reich and Ilyse Hogue: It's OK to attack Mitt Romney's job creation record (05/21/12) [3:46]
Eliot Spitzer | to Tim Geithner: NY Fed, Jamie Dimon conflict of interest not just 'perception' issue (05/18/12) [2:16]
Eliot Spitzer | 'We cannot go back to where we were': Bernie Sanders warns against Wall Street 'recklessness' (05/22/12) [2:52]
Eliot Spitzer | Why JPMorgan's big loss matters to anyone with a bank account (05/15/12) [4:00]
Eliot Spitzer | JPMorgan's $2 billion loss: Will it spur greater regulation of Wall Street? (05/14/12) [3:22]
Eliot Spitzer | 'Enough is enough': Bernie Sanders aims to eliminate tax breaks for 'Big Oil' (05/14/12) [3:02]
Eliot Spitzer | on what Republicans should learn from FDR (05/11/12) [1:59]
Eliot Spitzer | 'We have got to take action': Robert Reich on JPMorgan loss (05/11/12) [3:46]
Eliot Spitzer | Matt Taibbi: Death knell for Dodd-Frank? Debating the fate of financial reform (05/10/12) [5:53]
TYT Comments
TYT | Jim Cramer's Epic Facebook Fail (05/23/12) [3:42]
TYT | Morgan Stanley Subpoenaed By Massachusetts Over Facebook IPO (05/23/12) [3:31]
Lyme Disease
Under Our Skin - Official Trailer [2:32]
Under Our Skin - Extended Trailer [5:26]
VVH-TV News -- Lyme Disease: Medical Nightmare Part 1 [29:42]
Other Videos
The beauty of pollination [4:23]

Wednesday May 23, 2012
International News

El-Erian Says Greek Euro Exit Probably Inevitable: Tom Keene
Bloomberg | Catarina Saraiva | 05/21/12

Greece may have to exit the 17-nation euro and the monetary union should plan for it to ensure stability, according to Pacific Investment Management Co.'s Mohamed El-Erian.  "A Greek exit will be expensive and messy, but it's probably inevitable and therefore we should plan for it," El- Erian, the chief executive officer of the world's largest manager of bond funds, said in an interview on Bloomberg Radio's "Bloomberg Surveillance" with Tom Keene and Ken Prewitt. ... Read more

Domestic News

Dow Falls To Lowest In 2012 On Greece As Dell Tumbles
Bloomberg | Rita Nazareth | 05/23/12

U.S. stocks fell, sending the Dow Jones Industrial Average toward the lowest level on a closing basis this year, amid concern Greece may leave the euro and as Dell Inc. (DELL) tumbled on a disappointing revenue forecast.

Citigroup Inc. and Bank of America Corp. retreated at least 1.3 percent, following losses in a measure of European banks. Dell slumped 17 percent, the most on a closing basis since 2000, as the personal computer maker also reported profit that missed estimates. Facebook Inc. (FB) the social networking site that raised $16 billion in an initial public offering last week rallied 3.1 percent after plunging 19 percent over the previous two days. ... Read more

More Than 30 Blocks Of Grey & Decay
ZeroHedge | Author | 05/23/12

Our entire society is in a downward social and economic spiral. We are just at different levels of decay (Dante's circles of hell). At the current pace it won't be long before I'm writing about the 50 States of Squalor. It is virtually impossible to reverse a decline that has been underway for the last three decades. We sold our souls to Wall Street and chose a debt financed illusion of wealth over productive savings and investment which would have led to real wealth. ... Read more

How Financial Criminalization Crashed the Economy, and the Culprits Got Off Scot-Free
HuffingtonPost | Charles Ferguson | 05/23/12

It is no exaggeration to say that since the 1980s, much of the American (and global) financial sector has become criminalized, creating an industry culture that tolerates or even encourages systematic fraud. The behavior that caused the mortgage bubble and financial crisis was a natural outcome and continuation of this pattern, rather than some kind of economic accident.

It is important to understand that this behavior really is seriously criminal. We are not talking about neglecting some bureaucratic formality. We are talking about deliberate concealment of financial transactions that aided terrorism, nuclear weapons proliferation, and large-scale tax evasion; assisting in concealment of criminal assets and activities by others; and directly committing frauds that substantially worsened the worst financial bubbles and crises since the Depression. ... Read more

DemocracyNow Daily News
Democracy Now! National and Global News Headlines for Wednesday, May 23 [10:33]
Peter Edelman on Ending U.S. Poverty & Why He Left Clinton Admin over Welfare Law Part 1 (05/23/12) [13:04], Part 2 [12:16]
Peter Edelman | Census data shows nearly one in two Americans live in poverty and now the Congressional Budget Office warns things could soon get worse if President Obama and Congress remain at an impasse over the 2013 fiscal budget. House Republicans are calling for cuts to food aid, healthcare and social services while protecting funds for the Pentagon.  Edelman says. "We have six million people in this country whose only income is food stamps -- that's an income at a third of the poverty line.
TYT Comments
TYT | How To Buy A Politician (05/22/12) [7:22]
TYT | Debt Ceiling Debacle: GOP Backs Out Of Deal (05/22/12) [5:11]
TYT | Greg Palast on Vultures' Picnic (11/16/11) [18:18]
http://www.gregpalast.com



Time Lapse | Europe in 1000 Years of Context

Tuesday May 22, 2012
International News

U.N. Nuclear Monitor Says Deal With Iran Is Near
NewYorkTimes | ALAN COWELL | 05/22/12

In an apparent breakthrough that could play into the broader confrontation over Iran's disputed nuclear ambitions, the leader of the United Nations nuclear monitoring arm said on Tuesday that, despite unspecified differences, he expects to sign a deal with Tehran "quite soon" on arrangements for an investigation into potential military applications of the program.

Yukiya Amano, the director general of the International Atomic Energy Agency, was speaking to reporters on his return to the body's headquarters in Vienna after conferring with senior Iranian officials during an unusual one-day trip to Tehran. ... Read more

Domestic News

Toxic: Wall Street's Culture and Governance During the Bubble
HuffingtonPost | Charles Ferguson | 05/21/12 reprint
Re-printed from Predator Nation, interesting read

One fascinating question about the financial crisis is how and why the CEOs of major banks could have tolerated behavior that destroyed their own companies. In part, the same toxic financial incentives operated for them as for their employees, making them indifferent to the fate of their firms, employees, and customers. In some cases, however, destroying their firms was clearly contrary to their self-interest. Why did they let it happen? ... Read more

Jamie Dimon Complains More, As JPMorgan Chase Losses Eclipse $30 Billion
HuffingtonPost | Mark Gongloff | 05/21/12

...An initial $2 billion trading loss has likely resulted in a total loss of more than $30 billion, when you include a 19 percent drop in the bank's stock price. By itself, the trading loss alone might balloon to more than $6 billion, according to one estimate. ... Read more

Big Bank Time Bomb Ticking
HuffingtonPost | Ted Kaufman | 05/20/12

Haven't we had this discussion before?  And maybe I said "I told you so" then? Forgive me. But we still haven't gotten to the point where we actually do something about federally insured big banks gambling with derivatives.

Investopedia defines a derivative:  a security whose price is dependent upon or derived from one or more underlying assets. The derivative itself is merely a contract between two or more parties. Its value is determined by fluctuations in the underlying asset. The most common underlying assets include stocks, bonds, commodities, currencies, interest rates and market indexes. Most derivatives are characterized by high leverage.

Got that? I prefer Warren Buffett's more succinct definition: "I view derivatives as time bombs, both for the parties that deal in them and the economic system; derivatives are financial weapons of mass destruction." ... Read more

Worst Market Since Reagan -- Greets Obama Before Election
Bloomberg | Whitney Kisling | 05/21/12
Full article, good read

With only six months before the election, the stock market is giving President Barack Obama the worst returns since Ronald Reagan was seeking a second term. ... Read more

NATO Talks a Sham: War in Afghanistan Is Not Ending
HuffingtonPost | Rep. Dennis Kucinich | 05/21/12

The North Atlantic Treaty Organization is not a benevolent organization. NATO is not about the North Atlantic and it's not about our collective defense.  NATO is a cost-sharing organization that finances aggressive military action. By hiding behind the claim that the organization provides for 'common defense,' NATO allows us to wage wars of choice under the guise of international peacekeeping. The most recent example was the unconstitutional war in Libya where NATO, operating under a United Nations mandate to protect civilians, instead backed one side in a civil war and pursued a policy of regime change.

Today, NATO leaders are meeting in Chicago to discuss the future of Afghanistan. The talks are being billed as discussions of plans to end the war. The war in Afghanistan is not ending. These talks are simply about financing the next phase of the war. Read more

DemocracyNow Daily News
Democracy Now! National and Global News Headlines for Tuesday, May 22, 2012 [11:23]
DN | Should NATO Exist? Democracy Now! Debate on Alliance's Purpose, Afghan War's Future (05/22/12) [18:41]
Earthquakes in Northern Italy
Deadly earthquake in northern Italy (05/20/12) [2:00]
Deadly earthquake hits Italy [1:00]
More On Wall Street
TRNN | J.P. Morgan Funds Senate Finance Chair, Even Bigger Problem in the Wings (05/21/12) [11:26]
TRNN | Bill Black: JP Morgan Debacle Shows Deep Systemic Risk Unchanged (05/21/12) [16:30]
Winners and the Loosers on Facebook IPO (05/21/12) [4:06]
BP Gulf Oil Leak Cover up
TRNN | BP Coverup, Coverup: Greg Palast: US corporate media ignoring evidence of BP foreknowledge of problems that led to Gulf disaster () [13:46]
BP Blow-out Cover-Up - EcoWatch.org (04/20/12) [6:29]
Matthew Simmons Discusses BP's Oil Leak in Gulf of Mexico (07/21/10) [7:01]
bpwhistleblowers.blogspot.com



More Articles

The Rise of the New Economy Movement
AlterNet | Gar Alperovitz | 05/20/12
Nice article, with hopeful outcomes

Activists, theorists, organizations and ordinary citizens are rebuilding the American political-economic system from the ground up.  As our political system sputters, a wave of innovative thinking and bold experimentation is quietly sweeping away outmoded economic models. ... Read more

How Wall Street Killed Financial Reform
RollingStone | Matt Taibbi | 05/10/12

It's bad enough that the banks strangled the Dodd-Frank law. Even worse is the way they did it - with a big assist from Congress and the White House.

... Two years later, Dodd-Frank is groaning on its deathbed. The giant reform bill turned out to be like the fish reeled in by Hemingway's Old Man -- no sooner caught than set upon by sharks that strip it to nothing long before it ever reaches the shore. In a furious below-the-radar effort at gutting the law -- roundly despised by Washington's Wall Street paymasters -- a troop of water-carrying Eric Cantor Republicans are speeding nine separate bills through the House, all designed to roll back the few genuinely toothy portions left in Dodd-Frank. ... Read more


Monday May 21, 2012
International News

China Can Now Monetize US Debt Directly
ZeroHedge | Author | 05/21/12

... As Reuters reports, China can now bypass Wall Street when buying U.S. government debt and go straight to the U.S. Treasury, in what is the Treasury's first-ever direct relationship with a foreign government. ... Read more

Domestic News

Krugman: Romney's JPMorgan Stance 'Completely Clueless'
NewYorkTimes | PAUL KRUGMAN | 05/20/12

Sometimes it's hard to explain why we need strong financial regulation -- especially in an era saturated with pro-business, pro-market propaganda. So we should always be grateful when someone makes the case for regulation more compelling and easier to understand. And this week, that means offering a special shout-out to two men: Jamie Dimon and Mitt Romney. ... Read more

Today, the Billionaires Are King
HuffingtonPost | Jennifer M. Granholm | 05/19/12

... But now, we're taking giant steps backward, away from the founders' vision. Back to what they fought against. Only today, the billionaires are king. They want to control the levers of government at any cost. Literally. Money is no object to them. The billionaires have a huge interest in controlling the president of the United States. A few million dollars is a small investment for the returns they will get from the policies they'll have *their* president enact. ... Read more

Lewis Eisenberg, Major Romney Donor, Accuses Obama Of Demonizing Wall Street
HuffingtonPost | Hunter Stuart | 05/21/12

Lewis Eisenberg, the Florida co-chairman of Mitt Romney's presidential campaign, told The Huffington Post on Wednesday, "In the current atmosphere, the administration has made bankers, and anyone associated with the investment industry, a villain."  He went on to say that President Barack Obama has "turned the 1 percent and the bankers against Main Street."

Eisenberg is a former partner at Goldman Sachs and currently works as a senior adviser at a private equity firm. He made a $25,000 donation to Restore Our Future, a super PAC supporting Romney. Eisenberg also made the maximum donation allowed, $30,400, to the Republican National Committee, he told HuffPost over the phone. ... Read more

JPMorgan Counterparty Platt Says Bank's Trading Loss May Widen
Bloomberg | Erik Schatzker | 05/21/12

JPMorgan Chase & Co. (JPM) may face even bigger losses on faulty bets in credit markets if Europe's debt crisis worsens, according to one of the hedge funds that took the other side of the trades.

"They're not out of those positions," Michael Platt, co- founder and chief executive officer of BlueCrest Capital Management LLP, said today in an interview on Bloomberg Television's "Inside Track." "If we end up with a catastrophe in Europe in the short run, they're probably not positions that anyone would want to have." ... Read more

Wells Fargo Has Blood on Its Hands: Desperate Man Commits Suicide After Shocking Foreclosure Mistreatment
AlterNet | Dave Johnson | 05/15/12

Norman and Oriane Rousseau were one more couple pushed by a huge, greedy bank to the brink of homelessness. On Sunday, desperate and with nowhere to go, Norman Rousseau shot himself. ... Read more

DemocracyNow Daily News
Democracy Now! National and Global News Headlines for Monday, May 21 [9:12]
"No NATO, No War": U.S. Veterans of Iraq and Afghanistan Return War Medals at NATO Summit (05/21/12) [15:44]
Diane Rehms Show
Diane Rehm The NATO Summit And Securing Afghanistan's Future (05/21/12)
Fawaz Gerges: "Obama and The Middle East: The End of America's Moment" (05/21/12)
Jennifer Granholm Views
Granholm | 'Today, the billionaires are king' (05/18/12) [2:51]
Jennifer Granholm | Money equals speech: Billionaires and corporations drown everything out (05/17/12) [4:02]
Jennifer Granholm | Shadowy' organizations (ALEC) work to suppress the vote (05/18/12) [3:13]
Obama and Wall Street falling out of Love?
Lewis Eisenberg, Major Romney Donor, Accuses Obama Of Demonizing Wall Street (05/21/12) [3:10]
TYT Views
TYT | Elbow From The Sky On JPMorgan - Trading Loss Surges (05/18/12) [6:35]
TYT | Cenk' breaks down Bain Capital(05/18/12) [3:10]
GREED Game
TRNN | Ralph Nader: "Only the Super-Rich Can Save Us" (07/13/10) [10:26]
Piers Morgan: The Luxury Life of Dubai & A Luxury Tour Of Dubai (12/25/11) [46:11]
Super Rich The Greed Game (04/07/10) [58:30]

Weekender May 19-20, 2012
International News

Greece and the Eurozone: What to Expect When You're Expecting the Unknowable
HuffingtonPost | Jared Bernstein | 05/18/12

More out there today on the possibility of Greece leaving the Eurozone. The New York Times is a bit less pessimistic than the Washington Post, but if you're looking for something new to get nervous about, here you go. Better yet, I'll summarize: we don't know the outcome, but it will be ugly. Of course, it's already ugly, and that's worth remembering.  In terms of global reverberations, investors from other countries have been pulling out of Greece for a while. Claims by foreign banks in Greece are now down to below $100 billion, compared to $600-700 billion in Spain and Italy. ... Read more

Domestic News

Romney's Bain Record: Playing By a Different Set of Rules Than Ordinary Americans
HuffingtonPost | Robert Creamer | 05/18/12

Mitt Romney's history at the helm of Bain Capital tells us a lot about the kind of leader he would make as president.

First, of course, it demonstrates conclusively that he has absolutely no experience "creating jobs." Bain Capital was not in business to "create jobs" -- it was in business to "create wealth" -- for Mitt Romney and his fellow Wall Street investors. When Bain bought businesses that happened to create new jobs, that was entirely incidental. And when Bain-owned businesses laid off workers, cut wages, eliminated pensions or health care benefits -- or went bankrupt -- that was incidental as well.

Romney and the Bain crew couldn't have cared less whether their actions created jobs, eliminated jobs, or destroyed entire communities so long as they served their one and only purpose: making themselves and their colleagues very, very rich. ... Read more

Paul Krugman Wonders If Boehner, Other Republicans Are 'Manchurian Candidates'
HuffingtonPost | Author | 05/18/12

Appearing on "Martin Bashir" Friday afternoon, New York Times columnist Paul Krugman said that Republican leaders' economic policy is so destructive that "sometimes you do wonder if these guys are moles -- Manchurian Candidates -- for I don't know who."  Krugman also called lawmakers who think austerity programs will jumpstart the economy "completely deluded." ... Read more

How the Corporate Right Hijacked America's Courts to Enrich the Top 1 Percent
AlterNet | Author | 05/10/12

For a generation, America's political-economy has been gripped in a vicious cycle. Those at the top of the economic pile have taken an ever-growing share of the nation's income, and then leveraged that haul into ever-greater political power, which they have in turn used to rewrite the rules of "the market" in their favor. Wash, rinse and repeat. ... Read more

Bill Clinton, Boehner, And Some Other Rich White Guys Had A "Summit" And Agreed: It's Your Fault
AlterNet | Author | 05/16/12

  1. Despite the fact that unemployment is causing untold suffering for millions of people, it's not very important.
  2. Despite the fact that wage stagnation is destroying the middle class, that's not important either.
  3. Despite the fact that we need the social safety net more than ever after what they've done to the economy, it's expendable.
  4. Despite the fact that our government can borrow money at record low rates and use it to put people to work, thereby ending the recession and jumpstarting the economy, that option's not even worth discussing.
  5. etc. Entertaining article, if it wasn't so sad.
Read more

Economy
Martin Bashir | Paul Krugman: Wonders If Boehner, Other Republicans Are 'Manchurian Candidates' (05/18/12) [7:03]
G8 Summit
The president and fellow heads of state have their work cut out for them as they meet in camp david in search of solutions in the ongoing challenges of afghanistan.
Global Elections - New World Next Week (05/10/12) [15:00]
I was wondering with all the training exercises leading up to the NATO Summit, if we weren't looking at a potential False Flag operation. I guess it will be several days before we will really know. But in the meantime I like this 7 minute video done by the corbettreport. You need to watch the whole video to get/understand all the facts.
When False Flags Don't Fly [7:33]
Tom Morello on National Nurses United Rally at the Chicago NATO Summit: 'They Couldn't Shut Us Down'
NATO Summit
This is a fluff piece for the up and coming NATO Summit.
Welcome to Chicago, NATO (05/16/12) [9:39]
The Occupy Movement along with a lot of other organizations, had demonstrations planned for May Day around the US and World. Some people were planning to occupy Chicago all the way to May 19-21, the NATO Summit.
AP | Chicago Readies for NATO Summit on May Day (05/01/12) [1:51]
Several NATO fluff pieces... but interesting.
NATO Summit Chicago - Behind the scenes: preparing for NATO's Summit (05/17/12) [3:53]
NATO Summit Chicago - Chicagoans and the NATO Summit. (05/11/12) [3:25]
AP | NATO in Chicago, Inside the Security Operations (05/17/12) [2:36]
AP | Chicago Braces, NATO Has Arrived (05/18/12) [2:15]
More In Depth Video on NATO
This is a good discussion on why people are, and should be, protesting against NATO and the NATO Summit.
Opposing NATO in Chicago May 20, 2012 [28:43]
The Chicago NATO Summit - GRTV Backgrounder (05/11/12) [11:38]
Fukushima
Fukushima Japan in DIRE Straights: update for the last week (05/18/12) [14:59]
Ploomgate

Friday May 18, 2012
International News

EU, ECB Preparing For Possibility Of Greece Leaving Eurozone
Reuters | Author | 05/18/12

The European Commission and the European Central Bank are working on an emergency scenario in case Greece has to leave the euro zone, EU trade commissioner Karel De Gucht said in an interview published on Friday.  The comments would appear to be the first time that an EU official has confirmed the existence of contingencies being taken for a possible Greek exit from the currency bloc. Speculation has been rife about such plans, but their existence has not been confirmed. ... Read more

Domestic News

If the Mafia Got to Write the Laws, Loan-Sharking Would be Legal
Can US banks be trusted to self-regulate?
Aljazeera | Author | 05/15/12

"We have crony capitalism. We have a system where Wall Street got to write the laws. If the mafia got to write the laws loan-sharking would be legal. [Wall Street] got to write the laws reversing the rules that came out of the last depression ... demanding transparency, accountability, the oversight." ...

... Commercial banks spent nearly $62m on lobbying in 2011. Of this, $8.5m came from the American Bankers Association. Of the individual banks Wells Fargo spent $7.8m, JPMorgan Chase $7.6m and Citigroup $5m. ... Read more

Why Obama and Romney Will Compete to be Cheerleaders for U.S. Imperial Dominance
AlterNet | Author | 05/15/12

... Even in today's straitened fiscal climate, with all the talk of government austerity, Congress feels obliged to trump an already generous president by adding yet more money for military appropriations. Ever since the attacks of 9/11, surging defense budgets,forever war, and fear-mongering have become omnipresent features of our national landscape, together with pro-military celebrations that elevate our warriors and warfighters to hero status. ... Read more

House Endorses Continued War In Afghanistan Despite Calls To Withdraw Troops, End Conflict
HuffingtonPost | DONNA CASSATA | 05/17/12

WASHINGTON -- The House endorsed the continued war in Afghanistan on Thursday despite acknowledgment from Republicans and Democrats that the American people are war-weary after more than a decade of conflict.  By a vote of 303-113, lawmakers rejected an amendment that would have swiftly ended combat operations in Afghanistan by limiting funds only to the "safe and orderly withdrawal of U.S. troops and military contractors from Afghanistan." Read more

Defense Budget That Breaks Spending Agreement Passed By House
HuffingtonPost | Michael McAuliff | 05/18/12

WASHINGTON -- The House passed a defense budget Friday that exceeds the deal cut by Congress and President Barack Obama last summer, and that would have to be paid for with cash taken from poverty programs, health care and the federal workforce.  The National Defense Authorization Act permits $642 billion in defense spending next year. The White House has threatened to veto the bill, citing more than 30 changes to the budget it was seeking. ... Read more

Plutonomy and the precariat: On the history of the US economy in decline
Aljazeera | Noam Chomsky | 05/16/12

The current US economy is built on 'growing worker insecurity' - people who are too busy and poor to make demands. ...

The Occupy movement has been an extremely exciting development. Unprecedented, in fact. There's never been anything like it that I can think of. If the bonds and associations it has established can be sustained through a long, dark period ahead - because victory won't come quickly - it could prove a significant moment in American history.  The fact that the Occupy movement is unprecedented is quite appropriate. After all, it's an unprecedented era and has been so since the 1970s, which marked a major turning point in American history. For centuries, since the country began, it had been a developing society, and not always in very pretty ways. That's another story, but the general progress was toward wealth, industrialisation, development and hope. There was a pretty constant expectation that it was going to go on like this ... Read more

Dow Jones Industrial Average Drops 156 Points; S&P 500 Falls To 4-Month Low
HuffingtonPost | Reuters-Caroline Valetkevitch | 05/17/12

Worries about Spanish banks resurfaced after a media report said customers of Bankia had withdrawn more than 1 billion euros from their accounts in the past week. The Spanish government said there had been no such exit of deposits.  The developments in Spain followed reports that customers of Greek banks were moving funds on the belief the country would exit the euro, adding to broader anxiety about the region's debt crisis. ... Read more

DemocracyNow Daily News
Democracy Now! National and Global News Headlines for Friday, May 18 [10:15]
DN | Occupy G8: Protest Confronts World Leaders at Camp David, Urging Action on Poverty, Hunger... (05/18/12) [16:36]
International News
Newsy | EU, ECB Preparing For Possibility Of Greece Leaving Eurozone (05/18/12) [2:24]
Reuters | European Banks Stung by Greece (05/18/12) [2:35]
Diane Rehms Show
Diane Rehm Domestic News - Friday 05/18/12
International News - Friday 05/18/12
Banksters and the Economy
WSJ | Exclusive: Inside the Chaos at J.P. Morgan (05/18/12) [9:12]/a>
The Wall Street Journal's Monica Langley offers an exclusive, behind-the-scenes look at the chaos that enveloped J.P. Morgan as the bank and its CEO, Jamie Dimon, struggled to come to grips with the magnitude of losses from a trading debacle. Photo: Bloomberg.
Inside Story Americas - Can US banks be trusted to self-regulate? (05/15/12) [25:40]
WSJ | Why U.S. Economy is Heading Back Into Recession (05/09/12) [4:21]
Empire
Newsy | House Endorses Continued War In Afghanistan Despite Calls To Withdraw Troops, End Conflict (05/17/12) [4:21]
Chicago prepares for NATO summit (05/18/12) [2:27]
Naomi Klein: The Shock Doctrine (2009) [1:18:38]
Noam Chomsky - on the Decline of the American Empire (11/16/07) [10:27]
Aljazeera | Riz Khan - Noam Chomsky (06/25/07) [16:46]
Aljazeera | Riz Khan - John Perkins: Economic Hit Man (11/27/07) [17:56]
Noam Chomsky on Iraq Troop Withdrawal, Haiti, Democracy in Latin America and the Israeli Elections
Occupy Movement | Protesters
Ajazeera was created by disgruntled BBC reporters that thought BBC wasn't covering the Middle East as in depth as it should.
Here is Aljazeera's page on the Occupy Movement. There are a lot of pictures, videos and articles.
OCCUPY page
Animal Rights
Paul McCartney | Glass Walls: Watch now to discover why everyone would be vegetarian if slaughter-houses had glass walls. [13:04]   Also: http://meat.org
http://peta.org
PETA: People for the Ethical Treatment of Animals
501 Front St., Norfolk, VA 23510
Peta Videos
Two-Week Vegan Meal Plan
Vegetarian / Vegan Recipes
Order Your FREE Vegetarian/Vegan Starter Kit!
Best Speech On Animal Rights - Gary Yourofsky (12/22/10) [1:10:22]

Thursday May 17, 2012
International News

Spain beset by bank crisis, recession, bond pressure
Reuters | Sonya Dowsett | 05/17/12

Spain's borrowing costs shot up at a bond auction on Thursday, after economic data confirmed the country is back in recession and reports of an outflow of deposits from nationalized Bankia hammered its share price. ... Read more

ECB Cuts Off Operations With Some Greek Banks
Reuter | Author | 05/16/12

The European Central Bank has stopped monetary policy operations with some Greek banks as they have not been successfully recapitalised, euro zone central bank sources said on Wednesday. ... Read more

Plans to strike Iran "ready," says U.S. Israel envoy
Reuter | Author | 05/17/12

U.S. plans for a possible military strike on Iran are ready and the option is "fully available", the U.S. ambassador to Israel said, days before Tehran resumes talks with world powers which suspect it of seeking to develop nuclear arms. ... Read more

Domestic News

Accidentally Released - and Incredibly Embarrassing - Documents Show How Goldman et al Engaged in 'Naked Short Selling'
RollingStone | Matt Taibbi | 05/15/12

Last week, in response to an Overstock.com motion to unseal certain documents, the banks' lawyers, apparently accidentally, filed an unredacted version of Overstock's motion as an exhibit in their declaration of opposition to that motion. In doing so, they inadvertently entered into the public record a sort of greatest-hits selection of the very material they've been fighting for years to keep sealed. ... Read more

NDAA | Homeland Battlefield Act Portion Found Unconstitutional By New York Judge
HuffingtonPost | Larry Neumeister | 05/16/12

A judge on Wednesday struck down a portion of a law giving the government wide powers to regulate the detention, interrogation and prosecution of suspected terrorists, saying it left journalists, scholars and political activists facing the prospect of indefinite detention for exercising First Amendment rights.

U.S. District Judge Katherine Forrest in Manhattan said in a written ruling that a single page of the law has a "chilling impact on First Amendment rights." She cited testimony by journalists that they feared their association with certain individuals overseas could result in their arrest because a provision of the law subjects to indefinite detention anyone who "substantially" or "directly" provides "support" to forces such as al-Qaida or the Taliban. She said the wording was too vague and encouraged Congress to change it. ... Read more

JPMorgan's future losses at the mercy of an obscure index
Reuters | Daniel Wilchins | 05/17/12

It's the biggest parlor game on Wall Street: Estimating how large JPMorgan Chase & Co's (JPM.N) trading loss will be from a hedging strategy that went wrong.  The biggest U.S. bank by assets has already disclosed $2 billion of paper losses, and Chief Executive Jamie Dimon said it could lose another $1 billion or more.

The losses will grow, some traders say, because it appears JPMorgan has only sold a small portion of its position, leaving it vulnerable to price swings in a thinly traded market. Others are not so sure the bank will suffer much more than it already has. Dimon said the bank won't rashly sell, and any additional losses could arise throughout the year

The source of JPMorgan's problems is an obscure group of indexes that track the performance of corporate bonds. One of the indexes, the Markit CDX NA IG Series 9 maturing in 2017, is essentially a portfolio of credit default swaps - basically contracts that protect against default by a borrower.

This particular index is tied to the credit quality of 121 North American investment-grade bond issuers, including such names as Kraft Foods (KFT.N) and Wal-Mart Stores (WMT.N).  JPMorgan used that index, and others, to bet that credit markets would strengthen. Because that position is widely known on Wall Street, many traders are betting the opposite way in the hope of profiting as the bank's losses increase. The index has been moving against JPMorgan in recent days. ... Read more

How Wall Street Killed Financial Reform
RollingStone | Matt Taibbi | 05/10/12

... Two years later, Dodd-Frank is groaning on its deathbed. The giant reform bill turned out to be like the fish reeled in by Hemingway's Old Man -- no sooner caught than set upon by sharks that strip it to nothing long before it ever reaches the shore. In a furious below-the-radar effort at gutting the law -- roundly despised by Washington's Wall Street paymasters -- a troop of water-carrying Eric Cantor Republicans are speeding nine separate bills through the House, all designed to roll back the few genuinely toothy portions left in Dodd-Frank. ... Read more

Investors want Chesapeake annual meeting delayed
Reuter | Author | 05/16/12

Shareholders have asked a judge to delay Chesapeake Energy Corp's annual meeting, arguing that more disclosures are needed about Chief Executive Aubrey McClendon's compensation and personal loans taken out against his share in company wells. ... Read more

DemocracyNow Daily News
Democracy Now! National and Global News Headlines for Thursday, May 17 [9:21]
Good interview with Paul Krugman. He might not be my most favorite economist, but he didn't seem to pull any punches. DN | "End This Depression Now": Paul Krugman Urges Public Spending, Not Deficit Hysteria (05/17/12) [16:53]
DN | Krugman: Jamie Dimon Must Resign Over JPMorgan's $3B Lost & Campaign Against Financial Regs (05/17/12) [7:49]
DN | Paul Krugman on Eurozone: "The Whole Thing Could Fall Apart in a Matter of Months" (05/17/12) [6:06]
DN | Paul Krugman: Debt Commission Chair Alan Simpson Is Wrong To Call For Austerity, Budget Cuts (05/17/12) [4:50]
Diane Rehms Show - Inequality!
Diane Rehm The Cost of Economic Inequality (05/16/12)
Fresh Air - Interview with Jeremy Scahill
I really like interviews with Jeremy Scahill, he is so informative. fresh-air Why The U.S. Is Aggressively Targeting Yemen (05/16/12)
U.S. officials are now aggressively targeting terrorists in Yemen, which is now considered to be "the greatest external threat facing the U.S. homeland in terms of terrorism," says investigative reporter Jeremy Scahill.
Director John Carpenter
I'm a John Carpenter fan and find "They Live" eerily prophetic about our current Financial Crisis. I keep finding copies on YouTube. They Live [1:34:00]
Chesapeake Energy | Fracking | Natural Gas
Aubrey McClendon Senate testimony (09/16/09) [5:05]
Breakingviews: Impenetrable Chesapeake (04/27/12) [3:21]
How the Chesapeake crisis unfolded -- Reuters Investigates (05/03/12) [3:12]
Chesapeake apology can't save stock (05/04/12) [2:07]
May 2 - Chesapeake Energy's stock tanks despite CEO Aubrey McClendon's assertion that recent reports about his personal, financial dealings contain ''misinformation''. Sasha Salama reports.

Big stock position puts Chesapeake employees at risk
Reuters | Jessica Toonkel | 05/15/12

The woes of Chesapeake Energy Corp are hitting shareholders hard, including its employees.  Thousands of Chesapeake workers have retirement portfolios that are heavily invested in Chesapeake stock, which has declined sharply following revelations about Chief Executive Aubrey K. McClendon's business dealings. ... Read more

Insight: Peak, pause or plummet? Shale oil costs at crossroads
Reuters | Selam Gebrekidan | 05/17/12

Occidental Petroleum was among the first major U.S. oil drillers to make a big bet on the resurgence of domestic production, spending billions to grab oil patches from Texas to North Dakota.  Now, as it bemoans steep costs and moves its rigs out of the Bakken shale oil fields, some analysts wonder if the company has lost its clairvoyance. After two years of unyielding gains, costs are bound to fall, they say. ... Read more


Wednesday May 16, 2012
International News

U.S. Politicians Eye Europe Warily As Austerity Fatigue Ousts Governments
HuffingtonPost | Ryan Grim | 05/16/12

Ned Simons reported from London, Alexandre Phalippou from Paris, and Ryan Grim from Washington.

When Federal Reserve Chairman Ben Bernanke ventured to the Senate last Thursday for a closed-door gathering, he found a nervous Democratic caucus. One senator put their anxiety into words: How worried should we be about Europe?  The question wasn't merely about the drag on U.S. gross domestic product that a downturn on the continent could have. More importantly, Democrats were worried about the anti-incumbent anger in the European electorate, said one senator who was in the meeting.  Bernanke demurred, declining to get into the politics, but other senators in the room answered the question: Voters, they warned, will punish incumbents for the pain of austerity. ...

Graham, the South Carolina Republican, said that American politicians should learn from the Europeans and make sure that both parties are on board for spending cuts. That gives voters nowhere to flee.
Read more

Domestic News

Defense Chief Restricts Stealth Jet Till It Stops Choking Pilots
Wired | Spencer Ackerman | 05/15/12

For five years, America's most expensive fighter jets have been poisoning their pilots and crew. On Tuesday, the Defense Secretary finally stepped in -- restricting the flights of the F-22 Raptor, and ordering the Air Force to begin an 'expedited installation' of an automatic backup oxygen system for the entire fleet of Raptors, Pentagon spokesman George Little tells reporters. ... Read more

Model: The F-35
Manufacturer: Lockheed Martin Aeronautics
Seats: 1
Purpose: air-to-air combat
Development: >$1,000,000,000,000.00
Procurement: $400,000,000.00
Read more
Financial Crisis - FBI!!!!

FBI Opens Inquiry Into JPMorgan Chase's Trading Loss
HuffingtonPost | David Henry | 05/15/12

(Reuters) - The FBI has opened a probe into trading losses at JPMorgan Chase & Co, stepping up the pressure on the bank after the U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission and the Federal Reserve said they were also looking into the wrong-way bets that led to the losses. ... Read more

MotherJones - Good Articles on Wall Street

Too Big to Jail?
MotherJones | Monika Bauerlein | 02/2010

Why, three years after Wall Street crashed the economy, it's still time to fix its accountability deficit. ... Read more

Too Big to Jail: How Wall Street Took Over Washington
MotherJones | Kevin Drum | 02/2010

Three years after the biggest bailout in US history, Wall Street lobbyists don't just have influence in Washington. They own it lock, stock, and barrel. ... Read more

Moral Bankruptcy
MotherJones | Joseph E. Stiglitz | 02/2010

Why are we letting Wall Street off so easy? ... Read more

The Real Size of the Bailout
MotherJones | Author | 02/2010

The price tag for the Wall Street bailout is often put at $700 billion--the size of the Troubled Assets Relief Program. But TARP is just the tip of the iceberg of money paid out or set aside by the Treasury Department and Federal Reserve. In her book, It Takes a Pillage: Behind the Bailouts, Bonuses, and Backroom Deals from Washington to Wall Street, Nomi Prins uncovers the hush-hush programs and crunches the hidden numbers to calculate the shocking actual size of the bailout: $14.4 trillion and counting. ... Read more

Behind The Real Size of the Bailout
MotherJones | Author | 12/20/09

The price tag for the Wall Street bailout is often put at $700 billion--the size of the Troubled Assets Relief Program. But TARP is just the best known program in an array of more than 30 overseen by Treasury Department and Federal Reserve that have paid out or put aside money to bail out financial firms and inject money into the markets. To get a sense of the size of the real $14 trillion bailout. ... Read more



Wired Magazine - Evidence of Anti-Islam Bias

New Evidence of Anti-Islam Bias Underscores Deep Challenges for FBI's Reform Pledge
Wired | Spencer Ackerman | 09/23/11

But untangling the Islamophobic thread woven into the FBI's counterterrorism training culture won't be easy. In addition to inflammatory seminars which likened Islam to the Death Star and Mohammed to a 'cult leader,' Danger Room has obtained more material showing just how wide the anti-Islam meme has spread throughout the Bureau. ... Read more

U.S. Military Taught Officers: Use 'Hiroshima' Tactics for 'Total War' on Islam
Wired | Noah Shachtman | 05/10/12

... For the better part of the last decade, a small cabal of self-anointed counterterrorism experts has been working its way through the U.S. military, intelligence and law enforcement communities, trying to convince whoever it could that America's real terrorist enemy wasn't al-Qaida -- but the Islamic faith itself. In his course, Dooley brought in these anti-Muslim demagogues as guest lecturers. And he took their argument to its final, ugly conclusion. ... Read more

Combatting Terrorism Center at West Point
http://www.ctc.usma.edu/ | Author | date
See all the resources below
Read more

PDF Books Below
Letters from Abbottabad: Bin Ladin Sidelined? (05/03/12)
This report is a study of 17 de-classified documents captured during the Abbottabad raid and released to the Combating Terrorism Center (CTC). They consist of electronic letters or draft letters, totaling 175 pages in the original Arabic and 197 pages in the English translation. The earliest is dated September 2006 and the latest April 2011. These internal al-Qa`ida communications were authored by several leaders, most prominently Usama bin Ladin. In contrast to his public statements that focused on the injustice of those he believed ...
A False Foundation? AQAP, Tribes and Ungoverned Spaces in Yemen
Self Inflicted Wounds: Debates and Divisions within al-Qa'ida's and its Periphery
Radical Islamic Ideology In Southeast Asia (10/01/09)
The Haqqani Nexus and the Evolution of al-Qa'ida (06/13/11)
Shiism and Sectarian Conflict in Pakistan: Identity Politics, Iranian Influence, and Tit-for-Tat Violence
DemocracyNow Daily News
Democracy Now! National and Global News Headlines for Wednesday, May 16 [13:10]
NATO Summit in Chicago
DN | As NATO Meets in Chicago, Activists Condemn "Militarized Arm of the 1 Percent" Part 1 (05/16/12) [11:12], Part 2 [7:04]
DN | FBI Crackdown on Antiwar Groups Targets Chicano, Brown Beret Activist Carlos Montes (05/16/12) [10:44]
NATO Summit Chicago - Chicago prepares to host the NATO Summit 2012. [4:58]
NATO Shuts Down City to be Safe CBS - CHICAGO [1:52]
No-Fly Zone Enforced by Shoot-to-Kill Order During Chicago NATO Summit [3:40]
Secret Government Plans to Evacuate the City of Chicago During NATO Leaked [2:12]
NATO Summit : Chicago Hospitals perform Radioactive Dirty Bomb Attack Drills [2:29]
Opposing NATO in Chicago May 19, 2012 [28:43]
Financial Crisis
Driving home from my kids concert yesterday I recognized Matt Taibbi's voice on NPR. I quickly turned up the volume to hear Matt Taibbi talking about JPMorgan's $2 billion dollar screwup and how nothing has changed, i.e. improved for the better, since the 2007 Financial Crisis. Below, is the original "On Point" with Tom Ashbrook, and yesterdays DN interview with Bill Black. In the left column are great articles from MotherJones on how no-one has been brought to justice for the meltdown. DN | Crony Capitalism: After Lobbying Against New Financial Laws, JPMorgan Loses $2B in Risky Bet (05/15/12) [20:24]
Two billion dollars lost in a flash by JP Morgan. Is this an argument for the Volcker rule - cracking down on speculative bets by the banks?
NPR | On Point with Tom Ashbrook: The Future Of The Volcker Rule, interview with Matt Taibbi. (05/15/12 at 10:00am)
Bloomberg Billionaires Index

Diane Rehms Show - Fracking!
Diane Rehm Hydraulic Fracturing In The Marcellus Shale (05/16/12)
Wired Magazine - US Shadow Wars in Africa

U.S. Establishes New Drone Bases for African Shadow Wars
Wired | David Axe | 09/21/11

Washington is quietly setting up at least two new East African drone bases, plus one on the Arabian Peninsula, to support the expanding U.S. shadow war against Islamic militants in Somalia and Yemen. An apparently new facility has been built in Ethiopia. In the island nation of Seychelles, a defunct airfield is being reactivated. A third base is being set up in or near Yemen. ... Read more

East Africa Is the New Epicenter of America's Shadow War
Wired | Spencer Ackerman | 12/26/12

When Adm. Eric Olson, the former leader of U.S. Special Operations Command, wanted to explain where his forces were going, he would show audiences a photo that NASA took, titled 'The World at Night.' The lit areas showed the governed, stable, orderly parts of the planet. The areas without lights were the danger zones -- the impoverished, the power vacuums, the places overrun with militants that prompted the attention of elite U.S. troops. And few places were darker, in Olson's eyes, than East Africa.  Quietly, and especially over the last two to three years, special operations forces have focused on that very shadowy spot on NASA's map (see below). ... Read more

Blogger Shines Light on U.S. Shadow War in East Africa
Wired | David Axe | 05/15/12

An innocuous-seeming U.S. Air Force press release. A serendipitous satellite image in Google Earth. Snapshots from a photographer on assignment at a Spanish air base. The crash of an Air Force F-15E Strike Eagle fighter-bomber in the United Arab Emirates. These are some of the fragments of information that Italian aviation blogger David Cenciotti has assembled to reveal the best picture yet of the Pentagon's secretive war in the Arabian Peninsula and East Africa. ... Read more


Tuesday May 15, 2012
International News

Has The Greek Bank Run Started?
ZeroHedge | Author | 05/15/12

... Minutes ago Bloomberg sent out a notice that things in Greece may be on the verge of the final collapse. From Bloomberg: "Anxious Greeks have withdrawn as much as 700 million euros ($893 million) from the nation's banks since the inconclusive May 6 election, President Karolos Papoulias told party leaders yesterday, according to a transcript of the meeting posted on the presidency's website today. Papoulias said he got the information from the head of the Bank of Greece, the central bank, George Provopoulos, according to the transcript." ... Read more

Tepco has almost $10 billion loss after Fukushima
Reuters | Author | 05/14/12

Tokyo Electric Power Co posted an annual loss of almost $10 billion as compensation claims for the Fukushima nuclear disaster brought it to the brink of bankruptcy and fuel costs soared after idling all its atomic plants. ... Read more

Domestic News

JPMorgan Chase Has Lost $20 Billion On Its Bad Trade, Taking Into Account Share Price
HuffingtonPost | Mark Gongloff | 05/14/12

That's because the share price of the biggest U.S. bank by assets has tumbled by more than 11 percent since it announced the trading loss, shaving about $17.5 billion from its market value. JPMorgan shares were down another 2 percent on Monday, following a 9 percent tumble on Friday. ... Read more

Elizabeth Warren Is Right: Jamie Dimon Needs To Resign From NY Fed
HuffingtonPost | Peter S. Goodman | 05/14/12

... Yes, you heard right: The chief executive of JP Morgan Chase -- the largest bank in the land, and the exemplar of a 'too big to fail' institution -- is allowed to sit at the table with the people tasked with deciding when and how much of other people's money gets earmarked for his rescue. This is not the fox guarding the hen house; this is the fox guarding the hen house while selling synthetic derivatives whose value increases with every hen he gobbles up, and who burns down the hen house so he can collect on his fire insurance policy, and then gets the government to build him a new hen house at taxpayer expense. And then, after that, he still gets to guard the new hen house. ...

... In what other industry would this sort of arrangement be tolerated? Would we let, say, the oil and gas industry dominate the federal regulatory body that sets workplace safety and environmental standards governing offshore drilling? Well, yes, as it happens, we would. But that did not end well. Moreover, after the brazen recklessness of BP and it contractors, who turned the Gulf of Mexico into an enduring laboratory for the study of sea life plus oil, we finally got a sorely needed reorganization of the regulatory bodies. Surely, the 2008 financial crisis qualifies as the financial equivalent of the Deepwater Horizon spill. Yet here we are, more than three years later, living with the same rules that brought us a global calamity. Which is to say, essentially no rules. ... Read more

The Dimon Principle
WallStreeetJournal | Author | 05/14/12

... It's worth noting that once upon a time a $2 billion banking loss was a problem for the bank, not politicians. But in the Dodd-Frank world, the biggest banks have become more or less regulated utilities. One tragedy of J.P. Morgan's trading loss is that it will become an excuse to give regulators even more power, when what taxpayers really want is a system that ends too-big-to-fail banks, not a plan to revive them. ... Read more

Brooksley Born On JPMorgan Chase Loss: Nothing's Changed Since LTCM
HuffingtonPost | D.M. Levine | 05/14/12

To Brooksley Born, JPMorgan Chase's trading blowup looks a lot like the Long-Term Capital Management debacle of 14 years ago.  It's "happening all over again," Born told The Huffington Post on Monday. "We have to learn from these experiences, and we don't seem to be doing it yet." ...

... JPMorgan's $2 billion $2 billion trading loss suggests the need for derivatives regulation is as urgent as ever.  "As long as we don't have derivatives reform in place, this kind of loss can occur without any advanced warning," Born, now a retired partner at the law firm Arnold & Porter, said. ... Read more

Regulators Declare JPMorgan Chase Trade Just Fine By Volcker Rule: Seven And A Half Things To Know
HuffingtonPost | Mark Gongloff | 05/15/12

.... Corker said JPMorgan's OCC examiner was in fact "adamant" that this sort of thing wouldn't violate the Volcker Rule, according to Reuters. And "other regulators emphasized caution" in responding to JPMorgan's big loss, the NYT writes.

To which you can only respond: What is wrong with these people? JPMorgan's trades, as even the bank has come close to conceding, clearly violated the spirit of the Volcker Rule, even in its current watered-down form, that banks with federally insured deposits should not be gambling with their money. The trades were not risk hedges at all, as some people, including the bank's regulators, still believe. They were speculative bets that would not be permitted under Volcker or in any sane financial system. Speculative bets insured by your tax dollars, dear American reader.

Regulators are captured by the industry -- beyond even the presence of JPMorgan CEO Jamie Dimon and other banking bigwigs on the board of the New York Federal Reserve, a practice The Huffington Post's Peter Goodman suggests needs to end. ... Read more

ALEC (American Legislative Exchange Council) Memo Instructed Members To 'Navigate Away' From Tough Questions
HuffingtonPost | Dan Froomkin | 05/14/12

When the American Legislative Exchange Council (ALEC) first started facing public scrutiny about its extraordinary ability to turn "model bills" written by corporate lobbyists into state law, the secretive group sent out a list of talking points to its members, telling them what to do when faced with questions about the role of the group's corporate sponsors. The guidance, in a nutshell: Change the subject. ... Read more

DemocracyNow Daily News
Democracy Now! National and Global News Headlines for Tuesday, May 15 [12:46]
DN | Bill Black: Crony Capitalism: After Lobbying Against New Financial Laws, JPMorgan Loses $2B in Risky Bet (05/15/12) [20:24]
Diame Rehms Show
Diane Rehm Showdown In The Eurozone (05/15/12)
Too Big To Fail | JPMorgan | Jamie Dimon
JPMorgan's rivals fret about blowback from their $2billion loss (05/14/12) [2:16]
Sheila Bair: JPMorgan Debacle Signals That Big Banks 'Too Big To Manage' (05/14/12) [6:35]
Elizabeth Warren saying Jamie Dimon should quit New York Fed (05/14/12) [5:15]
Dangerous Fiscal Trajectory | Robert Rubin
Here are some insights from one of the true Banksters
Reuters | The U.S. has an unsustainable and dangerous fiscal trajectory: Robert Rubin (05/10/12) [6:20]
Reuters | The crisis in Europe: Structural reform necessary for survival: Rubin (05/10/12) [10:50]
TYT Short Clips
TYT | Wall Street Upset With Obama? (05/11/12) [4:56]
TYT | Time Breastfeeding Cover (05/11/12) [4:44]
TYT | Koch Bros Slammed By Billionaire T. Boone Pickens (05/12/12) [7:29]
TYT | U.S. Military Fighting Climate Change? (05/12/12) [4:57]
Noam Chomsky | John Perkins | Max Keiser
It is interesting that Noam Chomsky can say in 5 minutes what other people take books to say.
Noam Chomsky on the Bush Family [5:06]
I like John Perkins and his "Confessions of an Economic Hit Man". Here is a short version.
John Perkins - on Secret Empires [1:27]
Max Keiser always has great insights. Max Keiser - On The Federal Reserve [1:36]
Some New 48 Hours & 60 Minutes Vidoes
60 Minutes | Former CIA officer Hank Crumpton explains how the CIA toppled the Taliban after 9/11 (05/13/12) [43:48]
  1. Former CIA officer Hank Crumpton explains how the CIA toppled the Taliban after 9/11.
  2. Then, followers of Turkish cleric Fethullah Gulen have opened scores of charter schools in the U.S., inspired by a man who is as powerful as he is reclusive.
  3. Gary Sinise's role as amputee "Lt. Dan" in "Forrest Gump" has inspired him to help build homes for the most gravely wounded.
48 Hours | A Family's Honor: Why would a father want to kill his own daughter? Investigators believe the motive behind the murder is almost as shocking as the crime. (05/13/12) [41:03]
48 Hours | Ransom: A millionaire's son kidnapped, a ransom note demanding $750,000 and a family on the edge of terror. (05/12/12) [42:55]

Monday May 14, 2012
International News

TitleEuro Officials Begin to Weigh Greek Exit as Euro Weakens
Bloomberg | Patrick Donahue | 05/14/12

Greece's possible exit from the euro moved to the center of Europe's financial-crisis debate, rattling markets as authorities in Athens struggled to form a government. ...

... The euro fell for the 10th day in 11, weakening 0.4 percent to $1.2872 at noon in Brussels, the lowest in three months. Bonds in Italy and Spain tumbled, with Spanish 10-year yields climbing to more than 6.2 percent today for the first time since Dec. 1. Each country's spread against German 10-year notes jumped by more than 30 basis points. ... Read more

JPMorgan Estimates Immediate Losses From Greek Exit Could Reach 400 Billion
ZeroHedge | Author | 05/14/12

While our earlier discussion of the implications of Greece's exit from the Euro are critical reading to comprehend the real-time game of chicken occurring in front of our eyes, JPMorgan's somewhat more quantifiable estimates of the costs and contagion, given the results of the Greek election have raised market expectations of an exit of Greece from the Euro, also provide key indicators and flows that should be monitored. ... Read more

Domestic News

Romney Vowing Dodd-Frank Repeal Hits JPMorgan Inconvenient Truth
Bloomberg | Julie Hirschfeld Davis | 05/14/12

Mitt Romney says he wants to talk about the economy in this presidential campaign, including his call to repeal the Dodd-Frank financial regulation law. JPMorgan Chase & Co. (JPM)'s $2 billion trading loss in risky transactions isn't the sort of conversation he had in mind. ... Read more

Explainer: How JPMorgan lost $2bn
Aljazeera | Author | 05/14/12

JPMorgan invented credit default swaps in the 1990s, but practice proved bank's undoing in recent hedging loss.

A London-based trader working for JPMorgan's Chief Investment Office, identified in reports as Boris Iksil, whom wags have dubbed "the London Whale", devised a complex strategy to make money on the credit default swap market.  But the strategy backfired, inflicting at least $2bn in losses and severe reputational damage on the New York-based bank. That figure which could yet rise to over $3bn. ... Read more

JPMorgan Unit's London Staff May Go as Loss Prompts Exits
Bloomberg | Dawn Kopecki | 05/14/12

The entire London staff of JPMorgan Chase & Co. (JPM)'s chief investment office is at risk of dismissal as a $2 billion trading loss prompts the first executive departures as soon as this week, a person familiar with the situation said. ... Read more

Can Banking Regulation Prevent Stupidity?
ZeroHedge | Author | 05/13/12

Anyone who worked in finance in the decade before Glass-Steagall was repealed knows that prior to Gramm-Leach-Bliley the megabanks just took their hyper-leveraged activities offshore (primarily to London where no such regulations existed). The big problem (at least in my mind) with Glass-Steagall is that it didn't prevent the financial-industrial complex from gaining the power to loophole and lobby Glass-Steagall out of existence, and incorporate a new regime of hyper-leverage, convoluted shadow banking intermediation, and a multi-quadrillion-dollar derivatives web (and more importantly a taxpayer-funded safety net for when it all goes wrong: heads I win, tails you lose). I fear that the only answer to the dastardly combination of hyper-risk and huge bailouts is to let the junkies eat dirt the next time the system comes crashing down. You can't keep bailing out hyper-fragile systems and expect them to just fix themselves. The answer to stupidity is not the moral hazard of bailouts, it is the educational lesson of failure. You screw up, you take more care next time. If you're bailed out, you just don't care. Corzine affirms it; Iksil affrims it; Adoboli affirms it. And there will be more names. Which chump is next? ... Read more

What Was Not Said During Jamie Dimon's Media PR Campaign
ZeroHedge | Author | 05/13/12
Read more

DemocracyNow Daily News
Democracy Now! National and Global News Headlines for Monday, May 14 [12:08]
Noam Chomsky Discusses Palestinian Prisoner Hunger Strike on Democracy Now! [12:00]
Chomsky: Occupy Movement "Has Created Something That Didn't Really Exist" in US -- Solidarity [19:10]
Noam Chomsky on WikiLeaks, Obama's Targeted Assassinations and Latin America's Break From US [14:04]
Military Industrial Complex
"Why We Fight" by Eugene Jarecki, is a 2006 documentary film about the military--industrial complex. [1:38:41]
CIA insider tells 911 truth. Time to re-examine our World-view (03/28/12) [23:39]
BB | JPMorgan and the Stock Market
The Fear That JPMorgan Might Not Be Alone (05/14/12) [3:13]
Market Update: U.S. Futures Point to Lower Open (05/14/12) [2:16]
Occupy Movement Revives Protests Across Europe (05/14/12) [1:33]
Diane Rehm's Show
Diane Rehm Risky Bank Investments and The U.S. Economy (05/14/12)
Austerity Around the World
TRNN | Bill Black: Corporate Media and the Austerity Campaign (05/14/12) [13:23]
Occupy
Spain
TRNN | Spain's "Indignados" Mobilize Against Austerity (05/12/12) [6:48]
TRNN | Massive Protests Fill the Streets of Madrid (05/13/12) [1:59]
Aljazeera | Spain's "indignados" return, but are politicians listening? (05/13/12) [2:01]
Greece

Israel
Israeli PM Forms Large Coalition, Police Repress Protest (05/12/12) [5:59]

Friday May 11, 2012
International News

Spain Underplaying Bank Losses Faces Ireland Fate
Bloomberg | Yalman Onaran | 05/10/12

Spain is underestimating potential losses by its banks, ignoring the cost of souring residential mortgages, as it seeks to avoid an international rescue like the one Ireland needed to shore up its financial system. ... Read more

Aljazeera | India: The Republic Of Hunger
Aljazeera | Author | 05/11/12

More than 40 per cent of India's 61 million children are malnourished, prompting the prime minister to declare the problem a "national shame". India has one of the fastest-growing economies in the world and runs one of the largest child feeding programmes. But critics say only a fraction of aid reaches the needy. Read more

Domestic News

$2 BILLION GOES POOF, London Trader Known As 'Voldemort' Causes Biggest U.S. Bank Huge Loss
HuffingtonPost | Mark Gongloff | 05/10/12

JPMorgan Chase has suffered big, unexpected losses at a closely watched trading desk, providing fodder to supporters of a new financial regulation the bank's CEO has loudly opposed.

The biggest U.S. bank by assets said on Thursday that it had lost $2 billion on bad bets on credit derivatives, made by a London trading desk, run by a man other traders have alternately dubbed "The London Whale" and "Voldemort." The office is intended to hedge the giant bank's credit risk, not increase it. ... Read more

20 Second Summary Of What Just Happened
Bloomberg | Author | 05/10/12

A) Hubris
B) Greed
C) Stupidity
D) Moral Hazard
E) All of the above?
Read more

How The Fed Quietly Bought 1,150 S&P Points
ZeroHedge | Author | 05/10/12

With the need for exponentially larger expansions of the central bank balance sheets - and most importantly, the rate of expansion (flow) not just the size (stock) - we thought it useful to see just how the Fed's actions had impacted the S&P 500. From the lows in March 2009, 1150 S&P points have been 'created-or-saved' thanks to central bank largesse. That is a cost of $2 billion (not million!) for every S&P 500 point since the Fed started to expands its balance sheet by $2.3 trillion. Money-well-spent, we are sure you'll agree. In the meantime, it is the printing-endgames that we care about and the horrible sense of deja vu that the following chart inspires should at minimum see investors scaling back (which it appears the sensible retail investor is) - despite the imploring of every long-only asset manager. ... Read more

Click to see bigger image

S&P Opens The Pandora's Box: The Wall Of Refi Worry Is $46,000,000,000,000 Tall
ZeroHedge | Author | 05/10/12
Read more

New Time Magazine cover.
DemocracyNow Daily News
Democracy Now! National and Global News Headlines for Friday, May 11 [13:16]
Comedians on Romney (05/11/12) [1:00]
Ajazeera | 101East-India: The Republic Of Hunger (05/11/12) [25:07]
Diane Rehm's Show
Diane Rehm Domestic News - Friday 05/11/12
International News - Friday 05/11/12
JP Morgan
BB | JPMorgan: 20 Second Summary Of What Just Happened (05/10/12) [4:48]
BB | JPMorgan: Sum It Up, Take Away (05/10/12) [3:02]
Europe
TRNN | People of Greece Shake Europe (05/07/12) [15:00]
RT | Matina Stevis on Greek Elections, the Golden Dawn, and the End of an Era (05/07/12) [28:02]
Economist Richard Wolff
I like Richard Wolff's documentary "When Capitalism Hits the Fan". I like that he doesn't pull any punches. Richard Wolff: Capitalism Hits the Fan Film Screening (thenewschoolnyc) (03/10/10) [1:44:18]
Richard Wolff - The Call For a New Capitalism (12/12/11) [56:53]
Wolff on - Occupying Our Future: Cooperative Solutions to Tough Times (01/07/12) [1:47:39]
Opposition to Paying for Capitalism's Crisis | The New School [1:59:44]
Other Videos
You may or may not like Lyndon LaRouche and his ideas, but I like this video because it covers a wide timeline, explains faily well what has happened in the past, and what might be possible for the future.
LaRouche | How the UK and the US Engineer Misery and War [1:23:48]
See more on Lyndon_LaRouche
This young documentarian lacks quality, but not quantity. His video is packed full of facts.
War by Deception - 911 and Iraq lies from the same cabal (06/03/11) [3:08:30]

Thursday May 10, 2012
International News

The Only Way to Fix the World Economy
HuffingtonPost | Mike Lux | 05/09/12

... Once we throw the big banks out of the catbird seat and seize control of our economy and our government again, we can turn to what the USA should have doing a long time ago: investing in our industrial infrastructure and the job producing industries of the future, investing in our educational system and the R&D we need to keep innovating, and rebuilding our middle class.

Let me close by turning from economics to values. For countries to be successful, they need to have both the right long term economic policies, focused on building and expanding the middle class, and the moral fiber to understand that power and money are not all that matters. Part of the problem with Wall Street's power in this country is that the cut throat dog-eat-dog values of Wall Street have infected way too much of our society. We need to not only take back our economic fate from Wall Street, we need to cleanse our values system of their culture as well. ... Read more

How Does Our Military View Islam?

U.S. Military Taught Officers: Use 'Hiroshima' Tactics for 'Total War' on Islam
Wired | Noah Shachtmanr | 05/10/12

The U.S. military taught its future leaders that a "total war" against the world's 1.4 billion Muslims would be necessary to protect America from Islamic terrorists, according to documents obtained by Danger Room. Among the options considered for that conflict: using the lessons of "Hiroshima" to wipe out whole cities at once, targeting the "civilian population wherever necessary." ... Read more

FBI Teaches Agents: 'Mainstream' Muslims Are 'Violent, Radical'
Wired | Spencer Ackerman | 09/14/11

... At the Bureau's training ground in Quantico, Virginia, agents are shown a chart contending that the more "devout" a Muslim, the more likely he is to be "violent." Those destructive tendencies cannot be reversed, an FBI instructional presentation adds: "Any war against non-believers is justified" under Muslim law; a "moderating process cannot happen if the Koran continues to be regarded as the unalterable word of Allah." ... Read more

Obama Orders Government to Clean Up Terror Training
Wired | Spencer Ackerman | 11/29/11
Read more

Fukushima... What's the Problem?

The Worst Yet to Come? Why Nuclear Experts Are Calling Fukushima a Ticking Time-Bomb
AlterNet | Brad Jacobson | 05/04/12

... But nuclear waste experts say the Japanese are literally playing with fire in the way nuclear spent fuel continues to be stored onsite, especially in reactor 4, which contains the most irradiated fuel -- 10 times the deadly cesium-137 released during the 1986 Chernobyl nuclear accident. ... Read more

Fukushima's Nuclear Nightmare Is Far From Over (or the Disturbingly Deadly Act of Placing Profits Before People)
HuffingtonPost | Vivian Norris | 04/17/12
Read more

Fukushima Daiichi Unit 4 high-level radioactive waste storage pool at risk of catastrophic fire
BeyondNuclear | Author | 04/19/12

Japanese diplomat Akio Matsumura has been warning for many months about the potentially catastrophic risk, as due to another powerful earthquake, of Fukushima Daiichi's damaged and listing Unit 4 high-level radioactive waste (HLRW) storage pool (photo, left) completely collapsing. Robert Alvarez of Institute for Policy Studies (IPS) has documented that the Unit 4 pool contains nearly 10 times the radioactive Cesium-137 (Cs-137) than was released by the Chernobyl nuclear catastrophe. If the pool's floor falls out, or the entire Unit 4 reactor building collapses, the pool's cooling water supply will drain away, and the HLRW could catch on fire within a short period of time. Up to 100% of the volatile Cs-137 would then be discharged directly to the environment in the fire and smoke, as the pool lacks any radiological containment whatsoever. ... Read more

US Sen. Wyden tours Fukushima Daiichi, reveals situation worse than reported, urges Japan to accept international assistance
BeyondNuclear | Author | 04/16/12

U.S. Senator Ron Wyden (D-OR), a senior member of the U.S. Senate Energy and Natural Resources Committee, recently donned a radiation suit and investigated firsthand the devastated Fukushima Daiichi nuclear power plant in Japan. He reveals the situation is worse than reported, and is urging the Japanese Ambassador to the United States, Ichiro Fujisaki, to accept international assistance to address ongoing risks of catastrophic radioactivity releases, especially from the hundreds of tons of high-level radioactive waste stored in precarious pools vulnerable to earthquakes and tsunamis. Wyden has issued a press release, and posted his letter to the Japanese Ambassador. ... Read more

Status of Spent Nuclear Fuel in Question at Crippled Japanese Power Plant
ProPublica | Author | Series

Concerns about a radiation release from the Fukushima Daiichi power facility have focused on its stricken nuclear reactors, but the plants of that design also store highly radioactive spent fuel in pools outside the protective containment structure that surrounds the reactor itself. ... Read more

Domestic News

Bank Of America Shareholders Meeting Swarmed By Protesters
HuffingtonPost | Author | 05/09/12

Americans angry at Bank of America tried to communicate their frustration to the bank on Wednesday, quite literally.  Protesters gathered outside of BofA's headquarters in Charlotte, North Carolina Thursday to demonstrate against the bank's foreclosure practices, as well as its relationship with the government and the coal industry. The protesters, wielding signs with phrases like "stop corporate greed" and "Bank vs. America," came from a variety of organizations, including the Occupy movement and various labor unions. ... Read more

Gross Says QE3 Getting Closer as Goldman Sees Easing
Bloomberg | Wes Goodman | 05/09/12

Pacific Investment Management Co.'s Bill Gross and Jan Hatzius at Goldman Sachs Group Inc. (GS) say investors should prepare for additional bond purchases by the Federal Reserve to combat a slowing U.S. economy.  A decision to buy more debt is "getting closer," Gross, who runs Pimco's Total Return Fund, the world's largest mutual fund, wrote on Twitter yesterday. Hatzius, the chief economist at New York-based Goldman Sachs, predicted in a report the same day that the Fed will announce additional monetary easing when it meets in June. ... Read more

Citi's Buiter On Plan Z: Unleash The Helicopter Money
ZeroHedge | Author | 05/09/12

What to do? Much more of the same of course. Only this time whip out the nuclear option: the Helicopter Money Drop. This is the logical next step that Citigroup's Willen Buiter sees as "Central Banks should also engage in 'helicopter money drops' to stimulate effective demand" ... Read more

Jim Grant: "The Fed Owns The Stock Market"
ZeroHedge | Author | 05/09/12

The dulcet tones of Jim Grant provided much food for thought on Tom Keene's Bloomberg Radio show this morning. While the interest rate observer did not change his tack on the extreme experimentation of world's central banks, he did have some new perspective on the incredible moral hazard (or unintended consequence) that is being created. One of his main criticisms is the incredible arrogance and conceit of a central banking system that believes it can see the future and thwart things before they come to pass, as he notes "I blame the central bankers for confusing the black art of central planning with the traditional art of central banking". He fully expects more easing by the Fed and its friends as he awaits their response to this latest stumble in the markets but what is most evident to him is that "The Fed owns the stock market" since they have financially repressed all investors into risky assets they now have been forced to have a moral responsibility to keep us safe in those assets - incredibly! The Fed is more likely than not to intervene with still more money-printing in any effort to keep this bubble afloat. What Jim focuses on is the morality in economics and the current immoral policies that have very bad consequences. Read more

DemocracyNow Daily News
Democracy Now! National and Global News Headlines for Thursday, May 10 [11:43]
DN | Tony Kushner Hails Obama's Support for Same-Sex Marriage: "I Felt the Earth Move." 1 of 2 (05/10/12) [12:47]
TRNN | Austerity, the Euro Crisis and the US (05/09/12) [11:15]
How Does Our Military View Islam?

FBI Trainer Says Forget 'Irrelevant' al-Qaida, Target Islam (09/20/11) [Wired article]
Doctrinal Basis for Jihad.pdf
Fukushima in Pictures






Back to Domestic News

Austerity Can't Be Just for Regular People
RollingStone | Matt Taibbi | 05/09/12

... This sounds like the beginning of what will be a very heated debate over who has to pay for the excesses of the financial crisis. It was previously assumed that everybody but the actual financial services sector would have to pay, but voters in Europe now are refusing to go along, sparking a wave of eye-rolling editorials in the financial press. Even David Brooks got into the act today, penning a lugubrious editorial about the errant political instincts of the populist masses here and abroad. ... Read more

Typical Bank of America Customer
A Little Bit of Humor
Jon Stewart Mocks Mitt Romney For Stealing Obama's Credit (05/09/12) [4:35]


Wednesday May 09, 2012
International News

It's happening in Buenos Aires. It's happening in Paris and in Athens. It's even happening at the World Bank headquarters.
HuffingtonPost | John Feffer | 05/08/12
looks like a good article

The global economy is finally shifting away from the model that prevailed for the last three decades. Europeans are rejecting austerity. Latin Americans are nationalizing enterprises. The next head of the World Bank has actually done effective development work.  Maybe that long-heralded "end of the Washington consensus" is finally upon us. ... Read more

Domestic News

How Bad Things Are
HuffingtonPost | Paul Krugman | 05/08/12

His remarks immediately became famous, not least because they bore an eerie resemblance to the words of Chance, aka Chauncey Gardiner, the simpleminded gardener mistaken for a wise man in the movie Being There. In one scene Chance, asked to comment on economic policy, assures the president, "As long as the roots are not severed, all is well and all will be well in the garden. . . . There will be growth in the spring." Despite the jokes, however, Bernanke's optimism was widely shared. And at the end of 2009 Time declared Bernanke its Person of the Year. Unfortunately, all was not well in the garden, and the promised growth never came. ... Read more

America's Corporations Made A Record $824 Billion Last Year, As Conservatives Claim Obama Is Anti-Business
ThinkProgress | Pat Garofalo | 05/07/12

The Fortune 500 generated a total of $824.5 billion in earnings last year, up 16.4% over 2010. That beats the previous record of $785 billion, set in 2006 during a roaring economy. The 2011 profits are outsized based on two key historical metrics. They represent 7% of total sales, vs. an average of 5.14% over the 58-year history of the Fortune 500. Companies are also garnering exceptional returns on their capital. The 500 achieved a return-on-equity of 14.3%, far above the historical norm of 12%. ... Read more

Econ 101: May 9, 2012
ThinkProgress | Pat Garofalo | 05/09/12

Study: CEO Pay Increased 127 Times Faster Than Worker Pay Over Last 30 Years ... Read more

Panetta Says Drone Attacks Protect U.S. From Terrorists
Bloomberg | Tony Capaccio | 05/04/12

The U.S. will continue to launch drone strikes against militant sanctuaries in Pakistan even if that nation's government keeps opposing them, Defense Secretary Leon Panetta said.  While Panetta declined to be more specific when asked about the unmanned vehicles because they "remain covert operations," he said in an interview on Bloomberg Television's "Conversations with Judy Woodruff" airing this weekend, "The United States was attacked on 9/11, and we know who attacked us." ... Read more

Kelly Thomas Beating Video: Fullerton Homeless Man's Beating Revealed At Pre-Trial Hearing
HuffingtonPost | Anna Almendrala | 05/08/12

"I'm sorry, dude! I'm sorry," Thomas said. But the blows continue. At minute 16:30, the trio comes back into focus, and both police officers are on top of Thomas.

"I can't breathe dude, I can't breathe!" protests Thomas. "Please, I can't breathe!" Throughout, officers keep telling him to put his hands behind his back.

At minute 18, a back-up police car arrives at the scene and at least one more officer joins in. This is when the tasering starts, amid police requests to "stop resisting." After more prolonged tasers, Thomas is wailing and multiple officers are piled on top of him. ... Read more

DemocracyNow Daily News
Democracy Now! National and Global News Headlines for Wednesday, May 9 [9:40]
Robert Reich on Clinton's Errors of Crippling Welfare to Repealing Glass Steagall. Part 1 (05/09/12) [19:35], Part 2 [8:31]
Aljazeera | Inside Story - France: A new political era (05/08/12) [24:57]
Matches Articles on the Left
TYT | Not As Rich As Romney? Loser! - Boehner's Defense Of Mitt (05/06/12) [2:56]
TYT | Obama Anti-Business? Record Corporate Profits Suggest Otherwise (05/08/12) [5:33]
TYT | Ryan Medicare Reform Plan Suffers Blow (05/06/12) [6:02]
TYT | Drone Strikes & Foiled Terror Plots (05/08/12) [8:46]
TYT | Kelly Thomas Beating Video (05/08/12) [8:11]
Dylan Ratigan
Dylan Ratigan | Change in government in France (05/07/12) [11:04]
Dylan Ratigan | The real lasting effects of the financial crisis (04/30/12) [(9:49]
Dylan Ratigan | US Attorney General cracks down on Medicare fraud (05/02/12) [9:08]
Dylan Ratigan | Revolving door spins lawmakers into lobbyists (05/02/12) [3:11]
Dylan Ratigan | Tax reform must begin with honesty (05/08/12) [4:35]
Jon Steward
Jon Steward | In this exclusive, unedited interview, Senator Tom Coburn admits that Democrats and Republicans equally share the blame for the debt crisis. Part 1 (05/02/12) [7:55], Part 2 [6:25]
Older, but I was surprised to see Donald Rumsfeld on the Jon Steward Show
Jon Steward | Exclusive - Donald Rumsfeld Extended Interview Part 1 (02/23/11) [8:58], Part 2 [10:36], Part 3 [13:09]

Who is Winning the War?  America?  Afghans?  Transnational Business!  Follow the Money!
I'm repeating this from several months ago.  Profits for the transnational companies are becoming obscene.  Why aren't the 99%ers challenging the ExxonMobils, BPs and Lockheed Martins of the world!  See company list and their record profits.

United States Model: The F-35
Manufacturer: Lockheed Martin Aeronautics
Seats: 1
Purpose: air-to-air combat
Development: >$1,000,000,000,000.00
Procurement: $400,000,000.00
Read more

Taliban or Al Qaeda or ?? Model: pickup
Manaufacturer: Toyota
Seats: As many as you can pile in
Purpose: ground combat
Development: ????
Procurement: $250.00 used
Taliban or Al Qaeda



Why not just take the $400 million a plane and give it as food and clean water (i.e. modern wells) to the Afghan people. The Afghan people would probably appreciate it more.

See company list and their record profits.

Tuesday May 08, 2012
International News
Domestic News

A Question of Timing: What America Can Learn From the Revolt in Europe
HuffingtonPost | Robert Reich | 05/07/12

Who's an economy for? Voters in France and Greece have made it clear it's not for the bond traders.  Referring to his own electoral woes, Prime Minister David Cameron wrote Monday in an article in the conservative Daily Telegraph: "When people think about the economy they don't see it through the dry numbers of the deficit figures, trade balances or inflation forecasts -- but instead the things that make the difference between a life that's worth living and a daily grind that drags them down." ... Read more

We're Number ... 2? Are Americans in Denial About the Country's Decline?
AlterNet | Dean Baker | 05/01/12

Politicians in the United States must ritualistically assert that the United States is and always will be the world's leading economic, military and political power. This chant may help win elections in a country where respectable people deny global warming and evolution, but it has nothing to do with the real world. ... Read more

Congress Funds Killer Drones the Air Force Says It Can't Handle
Wired | Spencer Ackerman | 05/07/12

... The Pentagon asked Congress for only around $4 million for the MQ-1 Predator drone and about $1.7 billion for the next-generation MQ-9 Reaper over the next year. ... Read more

Republicans seek to add more in defense spending
WashingtonPost | Walter Pincus | 05/07/12

ouse Republicans on Monday spelled out some funding increases they are seeking in defense programs above the amounts President Obama requested in the fiscal 2013 Pentagon budget, including an additional $1 billion for Israeli anti-missile defense systems. ... Read more

2 Years Later, Grim Photos From the BP Disaster
MotherJones | Kate Sheppard | 05/07/12

It's been two years since the Deepwater Horizon disaster unleashed 4.9 million barrels of oil on the Gulf of Mexico. In the midst of the disaster, BP and its contractors did everything they could to keep people from seeing the scale of the disaster. But new photos released Monday offer some new insight to just how grim the Gulf became for sea life. ... Read more

JPMorgan Chase Whistleblower: 'Essentially Suicide' To Stand Up To Bank
HuffingtonPost | Loren Berlin | 05/07/12

When Linda Almonte alerted her boss at JPMorgan Chase about potential fraud in a major deal she was helping to close, she expected him to applaud her great catch.  Instead, he fired her. ... Read more

Sandy Weill (Citigroup) just wants to move on
CNNMoney | Nin-Hai Tseng | 05/07/12

After a long career on Wall Street, Citigroup's former CEO and chairman Sandy Weill is trying to put the near collapse of the bank behind him.

... He's also chairman of Carnegie Hall's board of trustees. And last March, he and his wife announced a $12 million gift to Sonoma State University to help it complete its concert hall. ... Read more

Four Things Grosser Than Pink Slime
MotherJones | Tom Philpott | 04/18/12

The specter of "pink slime" -- pureed, defatted, and ammonia-laced slaughterhouse scraps -- has caused quite the uproar over the past six weeks. (The latest: Propublica has a great explainer on pink slime and other filler products.) The current fixation on pink slime may well lead to the demise of the product ... Read more
Read more

Is Spent Nuclear Fuel Really Waste?
NewYorkTimes | MATTHEW L. WALD | 01/27/12

When the Blue Ribbon Commission on America's Nuclear Future was established two years ago, after the Obama administration killed a proposed repository for nuclear waste at Yucca Mountain in Nevada, one of the items on its agenda was to determine whether spent nuclear fuel was in fact waste. ... Read more

DemocracyNow Daily News
Democracy Now! National and Global News Headlines for Tuesday, May 8 [12:17]
DN | "Make A Ruckus": Robert Reich Hails Occupy For Exposing Concentration of Wealth and Power (05/08/12) [8:37]
EU Elections
Socialist Hollande wins French presidency (05/06/12) [3:04]
TRNN | Will New French President Challenge Germany? (05/07/12) [15:53]
TRNN | People of Greece Shake Europe (05/07/12) [15:00]
TRNN | The Paradox of President Putin (05/07/12) [10:14]
MQ-1 Predator MQ-9 Reaper UAV Operations (2011) [4:21]
BP and the Gulf Oil Spill

Gulf Oil Spill [ProPublica Series - Many Articles]
ProPublica | Author | series

Two years after oil from a BP well began gushing into the Gulf of Mexico, the U.S. Department of Justice has filed criminal charges alleging that a former BP employee destroyed critical evidence in the early days of the unfolding disaster. ... Read more

Fukushima

Fukushima: A Nuclear War without a War: The Unspoken Crisis of Worldwide Nuclear Radiation [Series - Many Articles - iBook]
globalresearch.ca | Prof. Michel Chossudovsky | series

The World is at a critical crossroads. The Fukushima disaster in Japan has brought to the forefront the dangers of Worldwide nuclear radiation.  The crisis in Japan has been described as "a nuclear war without a war". In the words of renowned novelist Haruki Murakami ... Read more

Live Update: US 'foils underwear bomb plot' by al-Qaeda in Yemen (05/07/12) [3:34]
Spent Nuclear Fuel Pools in the US
The Jeb Bush Conspiracy (12/19/11) [4:26]

Monday May 07, 2012
International News

France Elections: Hollande Beats Sarkozy To Become French President
HuffingtonPost | AP | 05/06/12
Read more

Greek Election Gridlock Raises Risk for Bailout, Euro Future
Bloomberg | Maria Petrakis | 05/07/12

New Democracy leader Antonis Samaras began trying to put together a government after a Greek election that raised fresh questions about the country's euro membership and triggered the biggest stock-market rout in four years. ... Read more

Euro Weakens as U.S. Stocks Fall While Treasuries Advance
Bloomberg | Michael P. Regan | 05/07/12

The euro slid for a sixth day versus the dollar and U.S. stocks fell, while Treasuries rose, after French Socialist Francois Hollande was elected president and Greek voters picked anti-bailout parties. Commodity shares led U.S. equities lower as the stronger dollar weighed on materials. ... Read more

European Elections Complicate Outlook
HuffingtonPost | Mohamed A. El-Erian | 05/06/12

Sunday's elections in Europe occurred in three countries with diverse economic circumstances (France, Germany, and Greece); and they were for different parts of government (presidential, regional, and parliamentary respectively). Yet the common message from the electorate is undeniable, reminiscent of a famous line in the 1976 movie Network: "I'm as mad as hell, and I'm not going to take this anymore!" ... Read more

Domestic News
Occupy Movement

Why I Occupy...
Huffington Post | Russell Simmons | 05/05/12

... because our democracy has been hijacked. The corporations and special interests pay our politicians to do their bidding instead of the people's. This legal bribery has to stop.  Most of you know that I strongly support a new constitutional amendment that was introduced into Congress to get all special interest money out of our political system. ... Read more

What Has Noam Chomsky Been Up to Lately?
beforeitsnews.com | Author | 05/07/12

Noam Chomsky has distinguished himself as one of the American left's most prominent "philosophers" and "cognitive scientists." The MIT professor is known for filtering his knowledge and opinions into countless books, media interviews and the like. Considering his past far-left commentary, it's no wonder that he has become a darling of the Occupy Wall Street movement. And over the past month, the prominent academic has been fast at work helping to advance the Occupy agenda. ... Read more

The Answer Isn't Socialism; It's Capitalism That Better Spreads the Benefits of the Productivity Revolution
Huffington Post | Robert Reich | 05/06/12

Francois Hollande's victory doesn't and shouldn't mean a movement toward socialism in Europe or elsewhere. Socialism isn't the answer to the basic problem haunting all rich nations.  The answer is to reform capitalism. The world's productivity revolution is outpacing the political will of rich societies to fairly distribute its benefits. The result is widening inequality coupled with slow growth and stubbornly high unemployment. ... Read more

Is a False Flag Being Setup?

"We are Preparing for Massive Civil War," Says DHS Informant
beaconequity.com | Dominique de Kevelioc de Bailleul | 05/03/12

In a riveting interview on TruNews Radio, Wednesday, private investigator Doug Hagmann said high-level, reliable sources told him the U.S. Department of Homeland Security (DHS) is preparing for "massive civil war" in America. ... Read more

Security Plan Shuts Down Roads, South Loop For NATO Summit Weekend
CBS Chicago | Author | 05/04/12

A large security zone around McCormick Place will be off limits to Chicagoans, and the Museum Campus, Lake Shore Drive and several major expressways and streets will be shut down before or during the NATO Summit, under a plan revealed on Friday.  All of this comes on top of a large restricted air space zone above the city. Anybody violating that airspace could be shot down. ... Read more

Fukushima

The Top Short-Term Threat to Humanity: The Fuel Pools of Fukushima
washingtonsblog.com | Author | 04/07/12

We noted days after the Japanese earthquake that the biggest threat was from the spent fuel rods in the fuel pool at Fukushima unit number 4, and not from the reactors themselves. ... Read more

Fukushima Is Falling Apart: Are You Ready ...
beforeitsnews.com | Author | 04/24/12

If they are MOX fuel, containing 6% plutonium, one fuel rod has the potential to kill 2.89 billion people. If this pool collapses, as Senator Wyden is now saying too, we would face a mass extinction event from the release of radiation in those rods. ... Read more

Karl Rove Group Claims Its Attack Ads Aren't Political
Huffington Post | Dan Froomkin | 05/07/12

Crossroads Grassroots Policy Strategies, the political ad-buying organization cofounded by Republican strategist Karl Rove in 2010, has officially submitted its first tax forms with the Internal Revenue Service, and as expected, the group is formally requesting that the IRS treat it as a nonprofit operating under section 501(c)(4) of the tax code.

The hitch is that the tax code says 501(c)(4) groups "must be operated exclusively to promote social welfare" -- the promotion of which "does not include direct or indirect participation or intervention in political campaigns on behalf of or in opposition to any candidate for public office."  Rove depends on Crossroad GPS getting that 501(c)(4) status for one reason. Avowedly political groups, like Crossroads GPS' sister organization, the American Crossroads Super PAC, have to disclose their donors; 501(c)(4) groups don't (although that could be changing). ... Read more

DemocracyNow Daily News
Democracy Now! National and Global News Headlines for Monday, May 7 [12:31]
DN | "A Political Implosion": Anti-Austerity Parties Win Historic French and Greek Elections (05/06/12) [15:06]
DN | ExxonMobil's Dirty Secrets From Indonesia to Nigeria to D.C.: Steve Coll on "Private Empire" (05/07/12) [22:01] <- good eye openner
Thomas Mann and Norman Ornstein: "It's Even Worse Than It Looks" (05/07/12)
Occupy Movement
RT | The Tea Party - A front group for Banksters & Billionaires (05/02/12) [7:00]
RT | May Day Hits Capitalism (05/02/12) [8:03]
GRITtv | FreeSpeechTv | Laura Flanders Chatting with Chomsky (05/01/12) [24:31]
Is a False Flag Being Setup?
http://www.trunews.com/listen_now.htm
Guest: Lee Bellinger  Radio Interview
Topic: Independent Living Chairman and Publisher Lee Bellinger discusses the domestic population surveillance and control grid being constructed throughout the U.S. based on military ops. www.independentlivingnews.com
Guest: Doug Hagmann  Radio Interview
Topic: Private investigator Doug Hagmann reveals some disturbing inside information and recent moves that indicate martial law may possibly be implemented before the year is finished. www.homelandsecurityus.com
Hagmann & Hagmann Report
SteveQuayle.com | HomelandSecurityUS.com
April 25, 2012: Interview with Steve Quayle (04/25/12) [2:00:04]
USArmy-Internment Resettlement.pdf
NATO G8 Summit
NATO Shuts Down City to be Safe CBS - CHICAGO [1:52]
No-Fly Zone Enforced by Shoot-to-Kill Order During Chicago NATO Summit [3:40]
NATO Summit Chicago - Chicago prepares to host the NATO Summit 2012. [4:58]
Secret Government Plans to Evacuate the City of Chicago During NATO Leaked [2:12]
NATO Summit : Chicago Hospitals perform Radioactive Dirty Bomb Attack Drills [2:29]
SHOWDOWN in CHICAGO 2012 [3:47]
Opposing NATO in Chicago May 19, 2012 [28:43]
Fukushima
RT | Fukushima - Did we almost lose Tokyo? (03/02/12) [8:03]
RT | Fukushima...radiation so high - even robots not safe (04/01/12) [7:14]
Japan in Denial Massive Radioactive Contamination Spread Worldwide Arnie Gundersen Blows Whistle (08/21/11) [11:03]
PBS Frontline | Inside Japans Nuclear Meltdown 2012 (04/25/12) [27:03]
Rense Dr Richard Wilcox Japan Plan Evacuate 40 MILLION People Fukushima Japan Tokyo (04/20/12) [41:15]
Rense and Michael Collins Fukushima Radiation Update (04/23/12) [39:35]
Other Videos (filler)
Conspiracy - Israel, Islam & Armageddon (The Berean Call) [59:29]
Megiddo - Armageddon [2:16:33]
Buildings
Mega Engeneering -Exotic Buildings [56:37]
Submarines
US | Submarine USS Virginia [46:38]
British | How to Build A Nuclear Submarine [59:12]
Russian | The Typhoon Submarine [53:01]
UFO Files - The Brazilian UFO Crash: The Varginha Incident [44:06]
NOVA: B-29 Frozen in Time [46:01]
B-29: Frozen in Time [article]  

Weekender May 05-6, 2012
International News
Domestic News

When Mainstream Media Coverage of Occupy Fell Off, So Did Their Coverage of Inequality and Corporate Greed
AlterNet | John Knefel | 05/03/12

Occupy Wall Street is rightly credited with helping to shift the economic debate in America from a fixation on deficits to issues of income inequality, corporate greed and the centralization of wealth among the richest 1 percent. ... Read more

The ideas and vision behind Occupy activism
Aljazeera | Danny Schechter | 05/03/12
Read more

Romney Advisor Says Spiraling Inequality Is Good for the Country
AlterNet | Dean Baker | 05/03/12

Mitt Romney's former partner at Bain Capital has written a book that reveals much about how the super-rich think -- and it's not pretty. ... Read more

Wall Street Closes Out Worst Week Of The Year
Huffington Post | PALLAVI GOGOI | 05/04/12

Stocks plunged Friday after the government reported that hiring slowed sharply last month. The report confirmed investors' fears that the U.S. economic recovery may be faltering.

The losses in the market were widespread. The Dow Jones industrial average lost 168 points and the Nasdaq composite had its worst day since Nov. 9. Both the Nasdaq and the Standard & Poor's 500 index closed out their worst weeks of the year. The Dow had its second-worst. ... Read more

The Revolt Against the NDAA Hits Congress
MotherJones | Adam Serwer | 05/04/12

Facing a serious civil liberties backlash, Congress is considering changing a controversial counterterrorism law it passed last year. Yet the leading fix, backed by House Republicans, may not be a fix at all.  Last year, during consideration of the National Defense Authorization Act, Congress came close to authorizing the indefinite detention of American citizens captured on US soil who were suspected of terrorism. ... Read more

Charts: The Real Cost of Killing Bin Laden
MotherJones | Dave Gilson | 05/01/12
Read more

Ron Paul: "Central Bankers Are Intellectually Bankrupt"
ZeroHedge | Author |05/03/12

Control of the world's economy has been placed in the hands of a banking cartel, which holds great danger for all of us. True prosperity requires sound money, increased productivity, and increased savings and investment. The world is awash in US dollars, and a currency crisis involving the world's reserve currency would be an unprecedented catastrophe. No amount of monetary expansion can solve our current financial problems, but it can make those problems much worse. ... Read more

Total US Debt Soars To 101.5% Of GDP
ZeroHedge | Author | 05/01/12

There is nothing quite like a $70 billion debt auction settlement at the last day of a month to bring total US debt to a record $15.692 trillion, which happens to be just $600 billion shy of the $16.394 trillion debt ceiling. (and no, contrary to simple economic textbook lesson, this does not mean that the private sector just got another $70 billion in debt capacity courtesy of taxpayers, as explained here). And now that we know what Q1 GDP was at the end of Q1, or namely $15.462 trillion, it is simply math to divine that today alone total US/debt to GDP rose by 50 bps to a mindboggling 101.5%. ... Read more

911 | Al Qaeta | Bin Laden | Muslem
In this series Aljazeera goes inside Bin Laden's head trying to expose Bin Laden's motives in the post 9/11 "War on Terror". Aljazeera | The 9/11 decade
A special three-part series taking an in-depth look at the post 9/11 'war on terror'. [article]
The 9/11 Decade - The Clash of Civilizations? (10/21/11) [47:28]
The 9/11 Decade - The Intelligence War [47:12]
The 9/11 Decade - Reflections [47:19]
Inside Iraq | Motives for war
Inside Iraq | Motives for war, interviews with Normal Finkelstein & John Mershimer Part 1 (04/04/08) [12:09], Part 2 [12:39]
I knew Bin Laden
Al Jazeera World | I knew bin Laden Part 1 (05/20/11) [45:17], Part 2 [44:53]

American Radical
The trials of Jewish-American political scientist Norman Finkelstein. [article]
Aljazeera | The trials of Jewish-American political scientist Norman Finkelstein (05/01/12) [46:04]
Aljaheera | Riz Khan: Professor Norman Finkelstein (06/22/07) [17:38]
DN | Norman Finkelstein on AIPAC (03/23/10) [9:52]

ALEC, the Koch Brothers and Big Oil

ALEC and ExxonMobil Push Loopholes in Fracking Chemical Disclosure Rules
AlterNet | Cora Currier | 04/27/12

One of the key controversies about fracking is the chemical makeup of the fluid that is pumped deep into the ground to break apart rock and release natural gas. Some companies have been reluctant to disclose what's in their fracking fluid. Scientists and environmental advocates argue that, without knowing its precise composition, they can't thoroughly investigate complaints of contamination.

Disclosure requirements vary considerably from state to state, as ProPublica recently charted. In many cases, the rules have been limited by a "trade secrets" provision under which companies can claim that a proprietary chemical doesn't have to be disclosed to regulators or the public.  One apparent proponent of the trade secrets caveat? The American Legislative Exchange Council, better known as ALEC, a nonprofit group that brings together politicians and corporations to draft and promote conservative, business-friendly legislation. ALEC has been in the spotlight recently because of its support of controversial laws like Florida's "Stand Your Ground" provision. ... Read more

Some Interesting Videos
Hang Drum
Hang Massive - Once Again - 2011 [6:07]
hang insomniac jam [9:06]
Spacedrum by Yuki Koshimoto [3:03]
Anoushka Shankar plays 'Pancham Se Gara' [11:27]

Friday May 04, 2012
International News
Domestic News

Mitt Romney Would Be the First Corporation to Be Elected President
Huffington Post | David Halperin | 05/03/12

"Corporations are people, my friend," Mitt Romney enthusiastically exclaimed last fall at the Iowa State Fair. Romney was referencing legal principles that give business corporations many of the rights possessed by actual human beings. But Romney is more than the exponent of this idea, he is its embodiment. If Romney wins in November, it will be the first time our country has elected a corporation to be president of the United States. Here are five reasons why that's the case: ... Read more

Wall Street Employees, PR Machines Spout Differing Messages On Occupy
Huffington Post | D.M. Levine | 05/03/12

... "The protestors are wasting their time," said one JPMorgan Chase employee, who did not wish to be named, citing company policy. "They're attacking the wrong people. They should focus on making a true difference and volunteer at soup kitchens or women's centers where feeding one person actually changes a life rather than live like hippies trying to mark the nation on a topic that's bigger than any of us." ...

... "At first, Wall Street firms didn't take the protests seriously," Taufield said. "Increasingly, they understand that this is part of a social movement by many Americans; it's part of a much bigger attitude shift and I think my clients get that. Wall street firms were pilloried. The financial services industry has become sensitized to the fact that they have an exceptionally low level of public support." ...

... L.V. wasn't opposed to individuals' voicing concerns about the economy, "but it's coming from the wrong group of people," he said. "They're virtually homeless and griping all the time; they're groups who don't pay taxes, don't contribute. We're basically subsidizing them!" ... Read more

BP Oil Spill Criminal Investigation May Ensnare Executives In Cover-Up
Huffington Post | John Rudolf | 05/03/12

On April 25, 2010, three days after the Deepwater Horizon rig sank in the Gulf of Mexico, Doug Suttles, a senior BP executive, told reporters the company's deep-sea well was leaking about 1,000 barrels of oil a day, a fraction of its maximum output.  "This is a long way away from something more significant," Suttles said.  Yet as Suttles and other BP executives assured the nation that the leak was small, the oil company's engineers had developed internal models showing a probable flow that was magnitudes greater, setting the stage for an unparalleled disaster, according to a newly unsealed federal affidavit and internal BP documents. ... Read more

Jim Grant: "The Federal Reserve Is The Vampire Squid Of Vampire Squids"
ZeroHedge | Author | 05/03/12

The world in which we invest is a world of immense wall to wall manipulations by our friends in Washington. And people get off on Goldman Sachs because it has done this and this, it is pulling wires... The Federal Reserve is the giant squid of squids, it is the vampire squid of vampire squids."

He continues: "They - the vampire squids - have manipulated virtually every single price and valuation in the capital markets. People ought to recognize when they invest that one of the unspoken risks is the risk that this hall of mirrors, this Barnum and Bailey world that the Fed has created for us is going to vanish one day because they will not be able to hold it any more... It's not as if there is nothing to do in investing, but one must always keep in mind that the valuations that we see, that the prices that we watch flicker across the tape are prices that are fundamentally manipulated by these well-intended, dangerous people in Washington called the Federal Reserve". And to think that 3 short years ago Grant would have been branded a loony, tin-foil hat wearing gold bug, while now it has become trendy for hedge fund managers to bash the Fed with impunity. It is all downhill from here. ... Read more

Our Economy For Dummies -- here are three articles that are accompanied by some great graphs.

Illustrated Federal Budget For Dummies - Part 1: Spending
ZeroHedge | Author | 05/03/12
Read more

Illustrated Federal Budget For Dummies - Part 2: Revenues
ZeroHedge | Author | 05/03/12
Read more

Illustrated Federal Budget For Dummies - Part 3: Debt & Deficits
ZeroHedge | Author | 05/03/12
Read more

Sofia Gatica, Argentine Activist, Faced Anonymous Death Threats For Fighting Monsanto Herbicide
Huffington Post | Lucia Graves | 05/03/12

For 13 years Sofia Gatica has organized opposition to the aerial spraying of agrochemicals that threaten human health and the environment in Argentina -- and for almost as long, she and her children have faced physical threats from anonymous agents.

Gatica, who lives in a working-class neighborhood of 6,000 in central Argentina surrounded by soy fields, began organizing against Monsanto after she noticed a disturbingly high rate of cancer and birth defects in her community. Her own 3-day-old daughter died of kidney failure in 1999, and a neighbor had a baby die of the same uncommon birth defect. ... Read more

DemocracyNow Daily News
Democracy Now! National and Global News Headlines for Friday, May 4 [9:35]
DN | Private Empire: Author Steve Coll on State-Like Powers, Influence of Oil Giant Exxon Mobil (05/04/12) [12:52]
Health Insurance Industry
PBS Newshour | High-Deductible Health Plans: Your Questions Answered (05/03/12) [7:43]
Top 10 Things to Know About High-Deductible Health Plans
Bill Moyers | Interviews Health Insurance Industry Whistleblower Wendell Potter (05/02/12) [36:31]
PBS | Bill Moyers Journal
I really like the interviews done by Bill Moyers. I think they are fair, in-depth and insightful.  Please take a look at the interviews below. Bill Moyers | How Big Banks Are Rewriting the Rules of Our Economy (05/03/12) [56:57]
Bill Moyers talks with former Citigroup chairman John Reed and former Senator Byron Dorgan to explore how our political and financial class shift economic benefits to the very top.
Bill Moyers | Paul Volker: Gambling With Your Money (05/03/12) [56:57]
Paul Volcker on why banks are wrong to undermine the Volcker Rule, Carne Ross on the power of ordinary people to effect change in government and commerce, and a Bill Moyers Essay.
Bill Moyers | David Stockman on Crony Capitalism (03/09/12) [33:00]
Stockman explains how the courtship of politics and high finance rewards the super-rich and corporations.
Bill Moyers | Jacob Hacker & Paul Pierson on Engineered Inequality (03/01/12) [36:06]
Bill Moyers explores how America's vast inequality didn't just happen, it's been politically engineered.
PBS Newshour | After the Fall: How Has Wall Street's Behavior Changed? (04/25/12) [12:27]
When Dodd-Frank regulations went into effect in the wake of the financial crisis, the intention was to create new oversight and reduce systemic risk. Part of our After the Fall series on what's happened since the meltdown, Jeffrey Brown and guests discuss how Wall Street has changed since the financial catastrophe.
Bill Moyers | Marty Kaplan: Big Money, Big Media, Big Trouble (04/27/12) [56:57]
Bill Moyers | It Pays to Be Rich (04/13/12) [8:10]
Bill Moyers | Iowa Citizens & Occupy Wall Street (04/30/10) [9:50]
PBS NOVA
PBS NOVA | Smartest Machine on Earth (05/02/12) [53:07]
"Watson," an IBM computing system, is gearing up for a first-of-its-kind challenge -- taking on human contestants on the game show Jeopardy! With a brain the size of 2,400 home computers and a database of about 10 million documents, will Watson be able to compute its way to victory? Win or lose, the difficulty of mimicking the human thought process with software is showing artificial-intelligence researchers that there's more than one way to be "intelligent."
PBS NOVA | Secrets of the Sun (04/25/12) [53:06]
It contains 99.9 percent of all the matter in our solar system and sheds hot plasma at nearly a million miles an hour. The temperature at its core is a staggering 27 million degrees Fahrenheit. It convulses, it blazes, it sings. You know it as the sun. Scientists know it as one of the most amazing physics laboratories in the universe. Now, with the help of new spacecraft and Earth-based telescopes, scientists are seeing the sun as they never have before and even recreating what happens at its very center in labs here on Earth.
PBS NOVA | Hunt for the Super Twister
PBS Newshour
PBS Newshour | Teachers Endure Balancing Act Over Climate Change Curriculum (05/02/12) [8:41]
PBS Newshour | IMF's Lagarde: Global Economy Sees 'Dark Clouds on the Horizon'(04/20/12) [3:08]

Thursday May 03, 2012
International News

The New World Order: Paranoia Or Reality?
ZeroHedge | David Einhorn | 05/02/12
Read more

Domestic News

The Fed's Jelly Donut Policy
Huffington Post | Author | 05/03/12

I believe that stocks are depressed because there is a pervasive feeling that something awful is going to happen. What is this enormous tail-risk? It's the intersection of reckless fiscal policy with overindulgent "Jelly Donut" monetary policy. ... Read more

What Has Occupy Wall Street Been Up To?
PBS | Azmat Khan | 05/01/12
Look at the interview with Cathy O'Niel in the right column

... They call themselves Occupy the SEC, and as Suzy Khimm explains in The Washington Post, they've slowly built an audience with some of the rulemakers and titans of finance they're trying to influence. Khimm describes it as "one of the most surprising iterations of the free-wheeling, anarchic movement: fighting the man through the tedious and Byzantine regulatory process."

Though they have a number of goals and projects, one part of the group is focused on trying to make sure banks can't game the "Volcker Rule" - a provision that would in effect reinstate a cornerstone of the depression era Glass-Steagall Act by separating proprietary trading from traditional customer-oriented banking. ...

... "I just felt like I was doing something immoral. I was taking advantage of people I don't even know... so I ended up deciding to work for the other side," explains Cathy O'Neil, a math-professor-turned-hedge-fund-quant-turned-Occupy-the-SEC activist. ... Read more

CEO Pay Grew 127 Times Faster Than Worker Pay Over Last 30 Years: Study
Huffington Post | Bonnie Kavoussi | 05/02/12
Read more

How Wall Street Drives Up Gas Prices -- Ripping Us Off and Killing Jobs
AlterNet | Les Leopold | 05/03/12/span>

Next time you fill up your tank, remember that $10 to $25 is going right from your pocket to the financial sector.  Gasoline prices have been falling in recent weeks, but they're still close to their five-year high after climbing steeply for three years. For every penny increase at the pump, $1.4 billion per year leaves our collective pockets, creating a drag on the sluggish "recovery." Where does it go and what caused the price explosion at the pump?

It's a common belief that oil prices are set on the world market by supply and demand. Less supply and/or more demand causes prices to rise. Oil is getting harder to find; OPEC is holding back supply; China and India are guzzling it up; Iran is threatening to blow it up. And regulations are getting in the way of drill, baby, drill -- end of story. ... Read more

What If the Greedy Rich Paid Their Share? 8 Things to Know About Wealth and Poverty in the US
AlterNet | Les Leopold | 04/17/12

America is loaded. We are not a struggling nation ready to go under. We are not facing an enormous debt crisis despite what the politicians and pundits proclaim. We are not the next Greece.  Rather, we have an enormous concentration-of-wealth problem -- one that must be solved for the good of our commonwealth. We are a very rich nation but it doesn't seem that way because our wealth is so concentrated in the hands of a few. This is America's disaster.

But wait. Doesn't the wealth belong to the super-rich? Didn't they earn it fair and square? Isn't that the way it's always been?  Not by a long shot. The amount of wealth that flows to the super-rich is determined by our public policies. It's all about how we choose to share our nation's productivity. ... Read more

MAPS: Biblical Flooding Is Coming to a Refinery Near You
Mother Jones | Erika Eichelberger | 04/25/12

Climate change has raised global sea levels by eight inches since the late 19th century, amping up storm surges and flooding around the world. Extreme coastal deluges--of the sort that's only supposed to happen once a century--are those that reach at least four feet above local high tides. The rate of this kind of biblical flooding is expected to more than double by 2030, according to the report. Check out the researchers' map of coastal threats from rising waters in your area. ... Read more

U.S. Turns Osama Against Al-Qaida With Document Dump
WiredMagazine | Spencer Ackerman | 05/03/12

In an apparent attempt to sow discord within the ranks of al-Qaida's remaining sympathizers, the U.S. government declassified personal communications from Osama bin Laden showing the terror leader fretting about the bloodthirsty movement he launched.  If al-Qaida affiliates keep killing Muslim civilians, bin Laden wrote to an aide shortly before the Navy SEAL raid that killed him, "they will spoil [things and] alienate the people, who could be won over by enemy after enemy. ... our brothers are making things worse by opening themselves up to evil and hostility!" ... Read more

DemocracyNow Daily News
Democracy Now! National and Global News Headlines for Thursday, May 3 [13:39]
DN | U.S. Media Giants Reel as FCC Orders Disclosure of Rates for Billion-Dollar TV Campaign Ads (05/03/12) [9:43]
Occupy Wall Street - Maybe There is Hope!
On the 1st of May, a wide variety of DC progressive organizations held a festival in Malcolm X Park followed by a march down 14th st to the White House.
Cathy O'Niel exposes: 1) how Wall Street insiders view the rest of us, 2) how much Wall Street relies on algorithms to predict buying trends, v.s. the true funtamentals of the companies they represent, and 3) how well the regulators know the markets they are trying to regulate.
PBS Frontline | Occupy Wall Street and the The Financial Crisis, an interview with Cathy O'Niel (01/18/12) [38:29]    article
Cathy O'Neil taught mathematics at Barnard College before working as an analyst for the hedge fund D.E. Shaw & Co. Disillusioned, she joined Occupy Wall Street and Occupy the SEC, where she hopes to devise an alternative banking system. She created the blog Mathbabe to explain and demystify terminology and practices in the financial system.

PBS Frontline - What I think of Frontline?
I originally used a lot of PBS Frontline videos thinking they were the ultimate resource for documentaries.  I liked their style and how they develope a topic.  But now looking back at some of the episodes I realize that they have their own biases.  I'm not sure if the biases stem from the PBS management or just to keep the episodes simpler to understand and produce.  So in the future I plan to use the PBS Frontline videos to set up a timeline, and look around at many more sources to derive my own conclusions. PBS Frontline | The Buzz Around That Tim Geithner Scene... (05/02/12) [5:44]
What Did the Documents Reveal?
"What we found out, really, was that Wall Street was in much deeper trouble than we ever imagined," Bob Ivry, one of the Bloomberg reporters investigating the loans, told FRONTLINE. In a series of reports, Bloomberg laid out three main calculations:

  1. $1.2 trillion: The amount the Fed loaned to banks on Dec. 5, 2008, the "peak lending day" or single neediest day for banks that year;
  2. $7.77 trillion: The total amount the Fed either lent, spent or committed "to rescuing the financial system" as of March 2009;
  3. $13 billion: The estimated net interest margin banks made "by taking advantage of the Fed's below-market rates."

Bloomberg says these amounts "dwarfed" the amounts lent to the same banks through TARP -- the $700 billion the Bush administration had secured from Congress to help alleviate the crisis. Citigroup, for example, received $45 billion in TARP funds, as compared with $99.5 billion it had borrowed from the Fed on its peak lending day, according to Bloomberg.

"Congress had no idea that these banks were having such trouble," Ivry told FRONTLINE, noting that the loans came while bank CEOs were assuring Congress -- which was in the midst of a debate over whether to regulate and even break up the banks -- that they were in good shape. The secrecy, Bloomberg asserts, "helped preserve a broken status quo and enabled the biggest banks to grow even bigger."
PBS Frontline | The Spill: BP Oil Spill (10/26/10) [54:08]    article
April 25, 2012, 11:16 am
Two years after oil from a BP well began gushing into the Gulf of Mexico, the U.S. Department of Justice has filed criminal charges alleging that a former BP employee destroyed critical evidence in the early days of the unfolding disaster.
PBS Frontline | Obama's War (10/13/09) [55:14]
article
The Taliban's StrongholdBattlefield scenes in Helmand province, southern Afghanistan, where the Marines' new mission is to stay and protect the people.
PBS Frontline | Bush's War (03/24/08) [2:23:53]    article
Within Hours of the 9/11 AttacksThe idea that Iraq and Saddam Hussein may in some way be connected is moving through backchannels - and has powerful advocates at Rumsfeld's Pentagon.
Dick Cheney: The Dark Side | Leading To War () [1:12:16]    Website
Collapse Videos
Richard Wolff: Capitalism Hits the Fan Film Screening (thenewschoolnyc) (03/10/10) [1:44:18]
Collapse Michael Ruppert Crisis World Order (11/17/11) [1:20:35]
Elizabeth Warren: The Coming Collapse of the Middle Class (UCtelevision) (01/31/08) [57:38]
Other Videos
The Killing Of America (1982) [1:29:17]
A documentary of the decline of America. It features a lot a footage (most exclusive to this film) from race riots to serial killers and much-much more. While this documentary is easily available everywhere else, it has never been released, distributed, televised nor made available for sale in the USA. This documentary argues that it is all started when John Kennedy was assassinated in Texas 1963 combined with poverty, racism, the Vietnam war, and gun violence but unlike Michael Moores heavy handed 2002 documentary "Bowling for Columbine" (Which is often compared to this documentary) this film never becomes preachy nor does it blame guns in the same way.

Wednesday May 02, 2012
International News

European Financial Treaty Faces Skeptical Irish Voters in Tough Referendum Fight
NewYorkTimes | DOUGLAS DALBY | 05/01/12
Read more

SIGAR Report Finds Afghanistan Reconstruction Compromised By Security, Corruption
Huffington Post | Dan Froomkin | 04/30/12

WASHINGTON -- Afghan reconstruction efforts remain severely hampered even after nearly $100 billion in spending over the last 10 years, according to a new watchdog report. The most immediate challenge stems from the insistence by Afghanistan's government that the private army of hired guns providing security for ongoing projects be replaced with Afghan locals, who do not appear to be up to the job, the report noted. ... Read more

Domestic News

May Day Protests Show Occupy Wall Street, Liberal Establishment Bonds
Huffington Post | Saki Knafo | 05/01/12

A little over six months ago, Stephanie McGuinness was camping out in Zuccotti Park, the epicenter of a new movement that often shunned politicians and community groups and other bastions of the liberal "establishment."  On Tuesday, as thousands gathered for May Day rallies around the country, McGuinness stood in New York's Bryant Park, handing out literature and chatting up passersby in her new role as an intern for the bastion of the liberal establishment that is the broadcast network Democracy Now. ... Read more

Greenspan Declares Obama's 'Worst Mistake,' Was On Deficit
Huffington Post | Mark Gongloff | 05/01/12
Read more

Has Team Romney forgotten that the Bush years were terrible?
Washigton Post | Ezra Klein | 05/01/12

It was, after all, only four short years ago. And it didn't go so well. The Bush economy is one of the worst on record. Median wages dropped. Poverty worsened. Inequality increased. Surpluses turned into deficits. Monthly job growth was weaker than it had been in any expansion since 1954. Economic growth was sluggish. And that's before you count the financial crisis that unfurled on his watch. Add the collapse to the equation, and Bush's record goes from "not so good" to "I can't bear to look."

Was all that his fault? Of course not. No economy is entirely under the president's control. He didn't create the tech bubble or 9/11. His responsibility for the financial crisis is, at best, partial. But Bush's economic policies -- including massive, deficit-financed tax cuts, and his reappointing of Alan Greenspan to lead the Federal Reserve -- mattered. And, rightly or wrongly, the American people blame him for the aftermath. He left office one of the most unpopular presidents in U.S. history. And the anger has stuck: A recent YouGov poll found that 56 percent blame Bush "a great deal" or "a lot" for economic problems. Only 41 percent said the same about President Obama. ... Read more

Mitt Romney's Dangerous Foreign Policy Team: Nostalgic for Bush, Hellbent on War with Iran
AlterNet | Alex Kane | 05/02/12

It's hard to watch the Romney campaign with a straight face. Their latest crackup has one Romney adviser, John Lehman, warning of the "Soviet threat," and another, Pierre Prosper, complaining that the administration hasn't done enough to stand with Czechoslovakia. And those comments were hardly the first time we've heard throwbacks to the Cold War in this campaign. But don't laugh too hard -- it might distract from the dangerous and discredited worldview Romney's foreign policy team is pushing. ... Read more

Why I Had to Get Out: Confessions of a Wall Street Insider
AlterNet | Alexis Goldstein | 05/01/12

... Before I occupied Wall Street, Wall Street occupied me. What started as a summer internship led to a seven-year career. During my time on Wall Street, I changed from a curious college student full of hope for my future into a cynical, bitter, depressed, and exhausted "knowledge worker" who felt that everyone was out to screw me over.

The culture of Wall Street is pervasive and contagious. While there are Wall Street employees who are able to ignore or block it out, I was not one of them. I drank the Kool Aid. I'm out of it now. But I'd like to tell you what it was like. ... Read more

ALEC and ExxonMobil Push Loopholes in Fracking Chemical Disclosure Rules
AlterNet | Cora Currier | 04/27/12

One of the key controversies about fracking is the chemical makeup of the fluid that is pumped deep into the ground to break apart rock and release natural gas. Some companies have been reluctant to disclose what's in their fracking fluid. Scientists and environmental advocates argue that, without knowing its precise composition, they can't thoroughly investigate complaints of contamination.

Disclosure requirements vary considerably from state to state, as ProPublica recently charted. In many cases, the rules have been limited by a "trade secrets" provision under which companies can claim that a proprietary chemical doesn't have to be disclosed to regulators or the public.  One apparent proponent of the trade secrets caveat? The American Legislative Exchange Council, better known as ALEC, a nonprofit group that brings together politicians and corporations to draft and promote conservative, business-friendly legislation. ALEC has been in the spotlight recently because of its support of controversial laws like Florida's "Stand Your Ground" provision. ... Read more

Detroit Michigan News

This Prom Has Everything, Except for Boys
NewYorkTimes | PATRICIA LEIGH BROWN | 05/01/12

"Hi, guys -- I mean girls!" Tharima, a Bangladeshi-American, exuded into the microphone as 100 girls -- Yemeni-American, Polish-American, Palestinian-American, Bosnian-American and African-American -- began pouring into the hall on Bangladesh Avenue.  This was prom, Hamtramck-style: the dense scrappy working-class city of 22,500 encircled by Detroit, once predominantly German and Polish, has become one of the most diverse small cities in America. ... Read more

DemocracyNow Daily News
Democracy Now! National and Global News Headlines for Wednesday, May 2 [12:13]
Occupy Wall Street
PBSNewshour | Budding Occupy Wall Street Movement Gives Voice to Anger Over Greed, Corporations (last year) [9:16]
High Frequency Trading
Comment: There are a lot of problems in our economy but Money in Politics, weakening Regulations, High Frequency Trading and Naked Short Selling are the ones that are going to push us off the cliff.
60 Minutes | Wall Street: The Speed Traders (10/10/10) [13:36]
ChrisMartenson.com | ChrisMartensondotcom
Joe Saluzzi on High-Frequency Trading: The Equity Market Is Now Controlled By The Machines (11/03/11) [45:28]
PBS FRONTLINE | Money, Power and Wall Street
Comment: The first two episodes from this series was aired last week. Now watch Part 3 and 4.
PBSFrontline | The Financial Crisis [article]
PBS FRONTLINE | Money, Power and Wall Street on PBS Part 1 (04/24/12) [59:14]
PBS FRONTLINE | Money, Power and Wall Street on PBS Part 2 (04/24/12) [54:31]
PBS FRONTLINE | Money, Power and Wall Street on PBS Part 3 (05/01/12) [59:14]
PBS FRONTLINE | Money, Power and Wall Street on PBS Part 4 (05/01/12) [54:31]
Comment: This is an older PBS Frontline, but talks about where we are heading if we don't get our deficit under control.
PBSFrontline | Ten Trillion and Counting (08/26/10) [53:48]
    Ten Trillion and Counting [article]
    Debt and the Bush Years [article]
    Obama's Options [article]
TYT
TYT | Occupy May Day - TYT Strike & Current OWS Show (05/01/12) [0:58]
TYT | Wolf-PAC: Join The Fight In California (04/30/12) [3:26]
TYT | Raise Taxes On The Poor - Eric Cantor (04/29/12) [4:54]
TYT | CEOs Make 380x As Much As The Average Worker (04/29/12) [3:12]
TYT | 8 of 10 Top Super PAC Donors Are Republicans (04/28/12) [2:49]
Enlightening
Comment: If you haven't already read or listened to the interview with John Perkins on his book, Confessions of an Economic Hit Man [53:35], you should. Then listen to the next talk by Keith Harmon Snow to REALLY see how our mass media misleads us.
The Plunder and Depopulation of Central Africa (10/19/11) [44:48]
African Union: Africa's New World Order - Global Government, Africom, ICC, IMF () [1:34:44]
Other Videos
Inside Secret Government Warehouses 2010 (09/03/11) [1:27:30]
The Underground - A Hidden Reality and The True Story of Phil Schneider (1996) [1:20:12]
Top secret Wikileak government conspiracy depopulation via fake UFO attacks [14:59]
If You Dont Believe in UFOs? Watch This! - Recent Mass UFO Sightings 2011 [12:40]

Tuesday May 01, 2012
International News

Spain's economic recession double-dips
Aljazeera | Author | 04/30/12

Spain's economic recession has double-dipped in the first fiscal quarter, as the country faces intense pressure from the European Union to solve its financial problems and growing public unrest against austerity measures, new data shows. The official data was released on Monday amid new quarterly unemployment figures showing nearly 25 per cent of Spaniards are out of work. ... Read more

More Misery to Come for Spanish Banks
WallStreetJournal | ART PATNAUDE | 04/30/12
Read more

Missiles Mounted on East London Apartments for Olympic Defense Drill
Wired | Katie Scott | 04/30/12

An old match factory in East London -- which now houses more than 700 apartments -- could be used as the launch site for anti-aircraft high velocity missiles during the Olympic Games.  Some (not all) of the residents living in the Bow Quarter have received a leaflet from the Ministry of Defence (MoD) stating that the Lexington Building water tower within the development "proved to be the only suitable site in this area for the high velocity missile system." The leaflet adds: "The location has been chosen as it is situated close to the Olympic Park and offers an excellent view of the surrounding area and the entire sky above the Olympic Park. The top of the tower also offers a flat, uncluttered and safe area from which to operate." ... Read more

How to Lose $7.8 Billion and Still Be Top of the Rich List
WallStreetJournal | Lauren Mills | 04/30/12
Read more

Domestic News

Tea Party Congressmen Accept Cash From Bailed-Out Bankers
Bloomberg | Heidi Przybyla | 04/30/12

Tea Party favorites such as Stephen Fincher of Tennessee were swept into Congress on a wave of anger over government-funded bailouts of banks.  Now those incumbents are collecting thousands of dollars for re-election campaigns from the same Wall Street firms whose excesses they criticized. They have taken no significant steps to curb them or prevent future taxpayer-financed rescues. ... Read more

Occupy Wall Street May Day 'General Strike' Planned With Unions, Immigrant Groups
Huffington Post | Saki Knafo | 04/30/12

Occupy Wall Street activists are planning for a nationwide series of demonstrations billed as a "general strike" on Tuesday in what could be the biggest test of the movement's organizing muscle since the winter.

Touted as a "day without the 99 percent," and modeled in part on massive immigration reform protests in 2006, Occupy groups in New York, Los Angeles, the San Francisco Bay area, Chicago and more than 100 other cities will join forces with immigrant rights groups and labor unions. Organizers expect tens of thousands of supporters to swarm the streets in those cities on the anniversary of the traditional labor movement holiday. ... Read more

How Elite Colleges Still Feed Wall St.'s Recruiting Machine
NewYorkTimes | LAURA NEWLAND | 04/30/12

Three and a half years have passed since the onset of the financial crisis, and the public hasn't changed the way it talks about Wall Street and its future. Journalists, politicians and even the Occupy movement have shaped our discussion by analyzing -- and often attacking -- the bankers at the helm.  Again and again we read about the forces driving the industry today, when we should be looking to the people who will lead Wall Street tomorrow. ... Read more

Erskine Bowles: 'We Face The Most Predictable Economic Crisis In History'
Huffington Post | Author | 04/30/12

... "I think today we face the most predictable economic crisis in history," he told an audience on April 24 at the Council on Foreign Relations -- an audience that might actually be able to help do something about the problem. "Fortunately, I think it's also the most avoidable. I think it's clear, if you do simple arithmetic, that the fiscal path that the nation is on is simply not sustainable."

Bowles, a Democrat, then laid on the crowd some pretty simple, but devastating, arithmetic. He explained that 100 percent of the tax revenue that entered the Treasury in 2011 went out the door to pay for mandatory spending -- such as Medicare, Medicaid and Social Security -- and to pay the interest on our staggering $15.6 trillion national debt. ... Read more

Oil Drilling Advocates Drive Presidential Debate With Ads
Bloomberg | Heidi Przybyla | 05/01/12

While polls show the economy as the top concern of voters, a review of political attack ads suggests a different issue dominates: energy.  Americans for Prosperity, an organization backed by oil interests, last week began airing its third television commercial since November, a campaign worth $6.1 million, attacking Obama's green energy policies. ... Read more

DemocracyNow Daily News
Democracy Now! National and Global News Headlines for Tuesday, May 01 [12:43]
DN | "Occupy Everywhere": May Day Special Show on OWS, Immigration, Labor Protests Part 1 () [9:51], Part 2 [20:52], Part 3 [12:49]
TRNN | Occupy Wall Street: A Wall St. Tax and an Independent Workers Movement (05/01/12) [16:31]
Aljazeera | The Koch Brothers (10/27/11) [24:45]
Spain's economic recession double-dips (04/30/12) [1:56]

Stephen King: Tax Me, for F@%&'s Sake!
Daily Beast | Stephen King | 04/30/12

The iconic writer scolds the superrich (including himself -- and Mitt Romney) for not giving back, and warns of a Kingsian apocalyptic scenario if inequality is not addressed in America. ... Read more

More Video
Fukushima
BBC | This World 2012 - Inside the Meltdown (03/03/12) [58:55]
BBC | Children of Fukushima (02/23/12) [58:28]
Bush Dynasty/Administration
One Nation Under Siege () [1:27:13]
The Bush Family Fortunes : The Best Democracy Money Can Buy () [55:54]
Starts out in German, but 90% is in English.
The Iron Triangle - The Carlyle Group Exposed () [48:04]
Breaking The Silence - Truth and Lies in the War on Terror (HQ) by John Pilger () [51:05]
Conspiracy - Oklahoma City Bombing
Conspiracy Files - Oklahoma City Bombing (2007) [58:58]
OKLAHOMA CITY: What Really Happened? () [1:16:25]
Middle East
Israel's Secret Weapon () [44:13]
Other Videos
Titanic: Death of a Dream (1994) A&E Special - Part 1 () [1:35:53], Part 2 [1:35:58]
THRIVE: What On Earth Will It Take? (04/05/12) [2:12:03]

05.01.2012. 11:39

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