Monday, September 30, 2013

Schooling Superman on Totalitarianism: Superman and The Flash have a discussion about gun control while playing chess

  1. Introduction to Inverted Totalitarianism

  2. Hypocrisy of U.S. Foreign vs. Domestic Policy

  3. The Flash Schools Superman on Gun Control


I. Introduction to Inverted Totalitarianism


As Chris Hedges has pointed out on numerous occasions, referring to Sheldon Wolin’s work in ‘Democracy Incorporated’ (article, book), the system that best describes the ideology that the government of the United States functions as is inverted totalitarianism. In his book “Days of Destruction, Days of Revolt”, which Hedges co-authored with Joe Sacco, he describes this system as:
“The political philosopher Sheldon Wolin uses the term inverted totalitarianism in his book Democracy Incorporated to describe our political system. In inverted totalitarianism, the sophisticated technologies of corporate control, intimidation, and mass manipulation, which far surpass those employed by previous totalitarian states, are effectively masked by the glitter, noise, and abundance of a consumer society. Political participation and civil liberties are gradually surrendered. Corporations, hiding behind this smokescreen, devour us from the inside out….

“Corporations, who hire attractive and eloquent spokespeople like Barack Obama, control the uses of science, technology, education, and mass communication…. We busy ourselves buying products that promise to change our lives, make us more beautiful, confident, or successful, as we are steadily stripped of rights, money, and influence…. Civil liberties, once guaranteed under our Constitution, have been stripped away….

“They build ever more elaborate walls and security systems to protect themselves, including the vast internal security apparatus of the U.S. Department of Homeland Security, with some one million employees. The elites are lashing out with such disproportionate force, fury, and viciousness againt peaceful protestors, many of whom come out of the middle class, as well as Muslims in the Middle East, that they are turning ever greater numbers of an alienated mass, at home and abroad, against them….

“George Orwell wrote that all tyrannies rule through fraud and force, but that once the fraud is exposed they must rely exclusively on force. We have now entered that era of naked force. The internal security and surveillance state, justified in the name of the war on terror, will be the instrument used against us….

“Fear is the psychological weapon of choice for totalitarian system of power. Make people afraid. Get them to surrender their rights in the name of national security. Demonize all who dissent. And then finish off the few who aren’t afraid enough.

“The National Defense Authorization Act (NDAA), signed into law on December 31, 2011, authorizes the military, for the first time in more than two hundred years, to carry out domestic policing. The military can detain, without trial, any U.S. citizen deemed to be a terrorist or an accessory to terrorism. And suspects can be shipped by the military to our offshore penal colony in Guantanamo Bay until ‘the end of hostilities.’ It is a catastrophic blow to civil liberties.”

“Days of Destruction, Days of Revolt”, p. 238-240, 263

Chris Hedges on the 'inverted totalitarian' corporate state




II. Hypocrisy of U.S. Foreign vs. Domestic Policy


The hypocrisy of U.S. foreign versus domestic policy is mind boggling (2). When the same individuals and institution that are profiting and promoting the militarization of nations turn around and tell us that we should not have guns, there is foul play afoot.

I’ll leave the conjectures up to you as to why our leaders are so eager to arm oppressive regimes and the citizens of other nations while disarming their own, but I can assure you, contrary to what they would like us to believe, it’s not because they care for the children.

Madeleine Albright - The deaths of 500,000 Iraqi children was worth it for Iraq's non existent WMD's




III. The Flash Schools Superman on Gun Control


One of the most important discussions taking place in the United States is the viability of the Second Amendment - the right to keep and bear arms - so I thought I’d add the following voice to the mix.

Below you will find a short excerpt from the ‘Injustice: Gods Among Us’ comic book series:
“The comic series begins with the premise of Superman's actions after the Joker's murders of Lois Lane and Jimmy Olsen, followed by the nuclear annihilation of Metropolis. The series follows the descent of Superman and the Justice League from the world's heroes to its oppressors with Batman leading a group of insurgents bent on resisting Superman's increasingly totalitarian acts.”
The pages presented are from issues #26 of the digital series. In this short glimpse into this brilliant story arc, we find Superman and The Flash playing high-speed chess while discussing Superman’s proposal to forcibly remove all guns from society (click images to enlarge):



And if you would like to know where this all leads, the following are all the cut scenes from the ‘Injustice: Gods Among Us’ video game which is the continuation of the story five years from the time the comic series ends.

Injustice: Gods Among Us : FULL MOVIE (2013) All Cut scenes



Friday, September 27, 2013

In Recognition of Endless Wars and Those Who Profit From Them: The Savage Sword of Conan

In recognition of endless wars (2) and imperial presidencies, executive salary bonuses, maximizing shareholder value, and banking profits, in recognition of profits made from selling weapons of mass destruction, waging war, and propagating fear, and in recognition of big oil (2, 3) and profiting from scarcity, let’s remind ourselves who actually benefits from war by taking a look at a couple of pages from one of the greatest comic book series ever created, “The Savage Sword Of Conan”.

Below you will find panels from page 29 and 30 of the August 1983 issue of The Savage Sword Of Conan #91 (click images to show full pages and enlarge):

source

The story so far …
    Conan and his mercenary army have won another victory and have dispatched their fastest rider to carry the news to King Ronal of Lapis L’harr, a Corinthian city-state engaged in protracted warfare with the adjacent city-state of Razalah B’qen:

In comic books, more often than not, the good guys win. I sure hope this is also the case this time around (2, 3, 4, 5), and that real life war profiteers will suffer a comparable fate as those bestowed upon their counterparts from this story arc (click image to enlarge).

Thursday, September 26, 2013

Tuesday, September 24, 2013

U.S. government knew that revelations about NSA’s PRISM program would hurt American Technology companies, but they didn’t “really really care”, Bart Gellman

The following has been appended as an update to the previous discussion on how The Surveillance State Killed BlackBerry.


When details of NSA’s PRISM surveillance program were revealed, American technology companies shuddered in fear, not because they were concerned about criminal prosecution – both the Bush administration and the Obama administration had authorized the program – they shuddered in fear because they knew the revelations would negatively impact their business.

In the following interview on Democracy Now!, when Juan Gonzalez asks Alan Rusbridger, the editor of The Guardian, the British newspaper that first reported on the Snowden affair (2), what his thoughts are on the impact of the revelations of the surveillance program on the world stage, Rusbridger replies (segments of interest occur at approximately 38:00 and 47:00 – emphasis added):
ALAN RUSBRIDGER [38:00]: Well, I think, the bit that is sometimes missing from the American debate, the President places great emphasis on the fact that America doesn’t spy on Americans in American territory, as if that was the only thing that mattered. And I thought it was very interesting that Mark Zuckerberg of Facebook said, the other day, well that is no use to us if we are trying to build an international business. So, I think Americans haven’t quite understood the anger of other states, of people living in Germany, you say, that Americans feel free to spy on anybody else in the world, and you just have to, sort of, reverse that and think how would Americans feel if Germans were spying on them, or the Chinese.…

JUAN GONZÁLEZ [46:00]: …your sense of how these kinds of revelations are, not only effecting world perceptions of the United States, but as you alluded to earlier, the ability of American companies, internet giants and computer giants to do business overseas – and more and more people are saying, why should I deal with Yahoo or why should I deal with Google if the American government is going to be able to spy on me.

ALAN RUSBRIDGER: …I think it gets to be a big big story for American innovation and business if the rest of the world comes to associate these companies with forms of surveillance, that is going to damage American companies, and I think the Silicon Valley companies know this, and they are worried.

Spilling the NSA’s Secrets: Guardian Editor Alan Rusbridger on the Inside Story of Snowden Leaks



So was the world’s reaction to these revelations surprising? Didn’t the U.S. government and the companies that enabled the spy agency to initiate and optimize this program realize that there would be a backlash?

In the following gem of an interview with Bart Gellman, the Pulitzer Prize-winning American journalist that first broke the story about NSA’s surveillance program with a piece entitled, “U.S., British intelligence mining data from nine U.S. Internet companies in broad secret program”, we find out that the U.S. government knew that the willingness of American companies to provide support for NSA's dragnet data collection program (2) would severely damage the American technology industry, and rightfully so considering how careless they have been with the data (1, 2, 3, 4). The interview is a must watch in its entirety for anyone following the NSA scandal since it delves much deeper than what has been discussed above. The segment of interest which I refer to takes place between approximately 22:00 to 28:00. I have provided the transcript to the best of my abilities below (emphasis added):
“So what you have, basically, is a system which begins with competition, in which the government will try to keep secrets, and it will always try to keep too many…. So the government will try to keep too many secrets and people like me will try to find them out, and I’m not going to get them all, nobody is, but I’ll get some of them. And then what happens is, there is a process of cooperation that takes place next. And so, we have not published anything in the Washington Post without going to the responsible authorities, and saying, here is a list of facts that we know and are planning to publish, can you please help us understand them, set them in context, and let us know if you have any security concerns about any of these facts getting into the public domain….

“The first disclosure that I did was about this PRISM program by which NSA get information from Microsoft and Facebook and Google and so forth, and I began the conversation – and it was on the phone so I did not speak in detail – and told them here is the title of the document, you know, we’ll talk again in a couple of hours and if you need me to come in, I’ll come in, or get the document in front of you and we’ll talk about page numbers and line numbers….

“There were a number of places where they said, can you leave this out or leave that out and they had quite plausible reasons and we said sure, and in fact there have been very very few cases in which we have published anything that they asked us not to publish. Sometimes we come back and say let’s try a different form of words, we want to get across the idea here because there is an important policy question that we think should be aired and we think most members of congress and most members of the public would think this should be aired, but we want to avoid stepping on the thing that you’re most worried about and so how about this, and they say we can live with that.

There was one thing in that first PRISM story that the government asked us to do that we declined to do, and that was to remove the names of the 9 companies. They said this could greatly damage our ability to work with these companies in the future, and I said, I am not speaking for the Washington Post but I’ll tell you what my recommendation will be. If the harm you’re worried about consists of the companies stopping doing something because their customers and the public at large don’t like what they’re doing and they’re going to lose business because of it, that’s why we have to publish it, that’s our job. Our job is to enable the public to make that kind of decision based on information. And as I expected the editor backed me up on that and we published it, and the government really cared about that, but there is another kind of measure of how much they cared. This thing got resolved entirely at the level of me and reasonably senior officials talking on the telephone. When they really really care and they’re not getting the answer they want, the conversation goes higher. I’m aware of two cases in which a president has called in an editor or publisher of the Washington Post, and it’s happened at other news organizations as well, this didn’t get anywhere near that. I’ll stop there.

The Snowden Affair NSA Leaks

Saturday, September 21, 2013

The Surveillance State Killed BlackBerry, and the Same Fate Awaits Other Tech Giants (Update 4)

- Update 1 - Permalink to update at: “U.S. government knew that revelations about NSA’s PRISM program would hurt American Technology companies, but they didn’t ‘really really care’, Bart Gellman”.

- Update 2 - Permalink to update at: "An example of how the surveillance state is hurting the U.S. economy: Ladar Levison confirms that he will be forced to move his business overseas".

- Update 3 - Link to Business Insider at: "The NSA Revelations Are Destroying IBM Hardware Sales In China"

- Update 4 - Permalink to update at: "The Irony and the Hypocrisy, the U.S. Department of Defense Is Using Blackberry for Its Privacy"

Being from Canada, interested in technology and the markets, and a privacy advocate, BlackBerry, formerly known as Research In Motion (RIM), has been on my radar for a number of years, so I would like to add my two cents regarding its demise (2, 3, 4, 5).

The two most important things we need to keep in mind about the “timeline of the company from RIM to Blackberry” are that: first, “when phone systems failed in New York and DC on 9/11, it was the BlackBerry network that provided backup communication”; second, contrary to popular belief, apps were never meant to be the feature selling point for its products, it was its security and privacy, the way it encrypted communication across its network that made it the only game in town.

In 2010, when governments threatened to “block encrypted BlackBerry corporate e-mail and messaging services if its security agencies were not granted access to them”, BlackBerry’s reply was:
“RIM also said it has drawn a firm line by insisting that any capabilities it provides to carriers for ‘lawful’ access purposes be limited by four main principles: Such access has to be legal, it must not exceed access imposed on RIM's competitors, it does not change the security architecture for Blackberry enterprise customers, and does not require a country-specific deal that does not conform to RIM's global standard for lawful access.”
Unfortunately, I haven’t heard or read a single word about this from the pundits on mainstream media, that BlackBerry’s selling point was its guarantee to privacy, i.e., its network was so secure that even BlackBerry didn’t have access to its users emails, which made the company what it was. That, however, changed when nations, starting with some of the most oppressive regimes in the world, demanded that the company provide backdoors to their networks so that they could spy on their customers:
“The home ministry, which has time and again shared with DoT its concerns over the security agencies' inability to de-crypt messages shared over BlackBerry, has now asked DoT to sound out Research in Motion (RIM), the Canadian firm that makes the BlackBerry device, that its services in India will face shutdown if its e-mail and other data services do not comply with formats that can be monitored by security and intelligence agencies.”
BlackBerry held out for as long as they could, making them unique when it came to protecting their customers privacy, but when the United States demanded the same, it was the final nail in the coffin for the company – the main feature that made them the envy of the industry and lead to customer loyalty was taken away from them. As Glenn Greenwald pointed out in a 2012 piece entitled, “How America's Surveillance State Breeds Conformity and Fear(emphasis added):
“I think the most interesting, and probably revealing, example that I can give you about where we are in terms of surveillance in the United States is a really ironic and unintendedly amusing series of events that took place in mid-2011. What happened in mid-2011 was that the governments of Saudi Arabia and the United Arab Emirates, which as we know are very, very oppressive and hate freedom, they said that what they were going to do was ban the use of Blackberries and similar devices on their soil. The reason is that the corporation that produces Blackberries was either unable or unwilling to guarantee that Saudi and UAE intelligence agencies would be able to intercept all communications.

“And the governments in Saudi Arabia and the United Arab Emirates were horrified by the prospect that people might be able to communicate on their soil without them being able to intercept and surveill their communication. And in response, they banned Blackberries.

“This created huge amounts of condemnation in the western world. Every American newspaper editorialized about how this showed how much these governments were the enemies of freedom, the Obama administration issued a stinging denunciation of both governments, saying that they were engaged in the kinds of oppression that we couldn’t tolerate. And yet, six weeks later, the New York Times reported that, ‘The Obama administration was preparing legislation to mandate that all services that enable communications’ -- and I’m quoting from the New York Times – ‘to mandate that all services that enable communication, including in encrypted e-mail transmitters like Blackberry, social networking websites like Facebook, and software that allows direct pure messaging like Skype, be designed to ensure government surveillance,’ which is exactly the same principle that everyone can damn United Arab Emirates and Saudi Arabia for.
So while we watch this train wreck and feel the pain of thousands of people losing their jobs, keep in mind that the main reason for BlackBerry’s downfall was not its inability to innovate, it was our governments’ inability to spy on their own citizens forcing them to require BlackBerry to change their business model which caused the company to collapse.

Have we learned any lessons from this fiasco? Not even close considering the hard-on that the U.S. government has had for Edward Snowden. As Mark Zuckerberg points out in the following insincere interview, "I think the government blew it".

Mark Zuckerberg Comments on the NSA | Disrupt SF 2013



We can expect many more companies, especially Western technology companies, to go the way of BlackBerry once certain governments begin to realize that there is now a huge opportunity available to them for new industries centered on protecting company and individual privacy. After all, if given the opportunity, wouldn’t you sign up to a network that offered secure and private communication?



UPDATE 1


“U.S. government knew that revelations about NSA’s PRISM program would hurt American Technology companies, but they didn’t ‘really really care’, Bart Gellman”

When details of NSA’s PRISM surveillance program were revealed, American technology companies shuddered in fear, not because they were concerned about criminal prosecution – both the Bush administration and the Obama administration had authorized the program – they shuddered in fear because they knew the revelations would negatively impact their business.

In the following interview on Democracy Now!, when Juan Gonzalez asks Alan Rusbridger, the editor of The Guardian, the British newspaper that first reported on the Snowden affair (2), what his thoughts are on the impact of the revelations of the surveillance program on the world stage, Rusbridger replies (segments of interest occur at approximately 38:00 and 47:00 – emphasis added):
ALAN RUSBRIDGER [38:00]: Well, I think, the bit that is sometimes missing from the American debate, the President places great emphasis on the fact that America doesn’t spy on Americans in American territory, as if that was the only thing that mattered. And I thought it was very interesting that Mark Zuckerberg of Facebook said, the other day, well that is no use to us if we are trying to build an international business. So, I think Americans haven’t quite understood the anger of other states, of people living in Germany, you say, that Americans feel free to spy on anybody else in the world, and you just have to, sort of, reverse that and think how would Americans feel if Germans were spying on them, or the Chinese.…

JUAN GONZÁLEZ [46:00]: …your sense of how these kinds of revelations are, not only effecting world perceptions of the United States, but as you alluded to earlier, the ability of American companies, internet giants and computer giants to do business overseas – and more and more people are saying, why should I deal with Yahoo or why should I deal with Google if the American government is going to be able to spy on me.

ALAN RUSBRIDGER: …I think it gets to be a big big story for American innovation and business if the rest of the world comes to associate these companies with forms of surveillance, that is going to damage American companies, and I think the Silicon Valley companies know this, and they are worried.

Spilling the NSA’s Secrets: Guardian Editor Alan Rusbridger on the Inside Story of Snowden Leaks



So was the world’s reaction to these revelations surprising? Didn’t the U.S. government and the companies that enabled the spy agency to initiate and optimize this program realize that there would be a backlash?

In the following gem of an interview with Bart Gellman, the Pulitzer Prize-winning American journalist that first broke the story about NSA’s surveillance program with a piece entitled, “U.S., British intelligence mining data from nine U.S. Internet companies in broad secret program”, we find out that the U.S. government knew that the willingness of American companies to provide support for NSA's dragnet data collection programs (2) would severely damage the American technology industry, and rightfully so considering how careless they have been with the data (1, 2, 3, 4). The interview is a must watch in its entirety for anyone following the NSA scandal since it delves much deeper than what has been discussed above. The segment of interest which I refer to takes place between approximately 22:00 to 28:00. I have provided the transcript to the best of my abilities below (emphasis added):
“So what you have, basically, is a system which begins with competition, in which the government will try to keep secretes, and it will always try to keep too many…. So the government will try to keep too many secretes and people like me will try to find them out, and I’m not going to get them all, nobody is, but I’ll get some of them. And then what happens is, there is a process of cooperation that takes place next. And so, we have not published anything in the Washington Post without going to the responsible authorities, and saying, here is a list of facts that we know and are planning to publish, can you please help us understand them, set them in context, and let us know if you have any security concerns about any of these facts getting into the public domain….

“The first disclosure that I did was about this PRISM program by which NSA get information from Microsoft and Facebook and Google and so forth, and I began the conversation – and it was on the phone so I did not speak in detail – and told them here is the title of the document, you know, we’ll talk again in a couple of hours and if you need me to come in, I’ll come in, or get the document in front of you and we’ll talk about page numbers and line numbers….

“There were a number of places where they said, can you leave this out or leave that out and they had quite plausible reasons and we said sure, and in fact there have been very very few cases in which we have published anything that they asked us not to publish. Sometimes we come back and say let’s try a different form of words, we want to get across the idea here because there is an important policy question that we think should be aired and we think most members of congress and most members of the public would think this should be aired, but we want to avoid stepping on the thing that you’re most worried about and so how about this, and they say we can live with that.

There was one thing in that first PRISM story that the government asked us to do that we declined to do, and that was to remove the names of the 9 companies. They said this could greatly damage our ability to work with these companies in the future, and I said, I am not speaking for the Washington Post but I’ll tell you what my recommendation will be. If the harm you’re worried about consists of the companies stopping doing something because their customers and the public at large don’t like what they’re doing and they’re going to lose business because of it, that’s why we have to publish it, that’s our job. Our job is to enable the public to make that kind of decision based on information. And as I expected the editor backed me up on that and we published it, and the government really cared about that, but there is another kind of measure of how much they cared. This thing got resolved entirely at the level of me and reasonably senior officials talking on the telephone. When they really really care and they’re not getting the answer they want, the conversation goes higher. I’m aware of two cases in which a president has called in an editor or publisher of the Washington Post, and it’s happened at other news organizations as well, this didn’t get anywhere near that. I’ll stop there.

The Snowden Affair NSA Leaks





UPDATE 2


“An example of how the surveillance state is hurting the U.S. economy: Ladar Levison confirms that he will be forced to move his business overseas”

In a sign of things to come for the U.S. tech industry, Ladar Levison, the owner of Lavabit, the secure private encrypted email provider that shut down after 10 years of operation (2, 3) because they decided not to abide by the demands made by the United States government to spy on their 400,000 plus users, explains that if he loses his case against the U.S. government he will most likely hand over his company to someone overseas and let them run it. It’s important to note that the U.S. government already new that this would be the end result, that revelations about NSA’s PRISM program would hurt American Technology companies, but they didn’t really care.

Levison clarifies his position in the following interview on Democracy Now!. The segment in which he makes these comments occurs at approximately the 11 minute mark, but the whole interview is well worth watching, especially the part just before these comments where he explains how the U.S. government is “remotely loading malware onto people’s computers without any kind of restriction, restraint or oversight.”
AMY GOODMAN: What are your plans now? Are you going to restart Lavabit? Do you feel you have to go overseas to do this?

LADAR LEVISON: I feel if I did go overseas, I could run the service. But I’m not ready to give up on America yet. I think I have effectively come to the decision that I’m going to wait and see how the court case plays out. If Jesse and myself end up winning, I’ll be able to reopen Lavabit here in the U.S. If I lose, I will probably end up turning over the service to somebody abroad and let them run it, so that I can stay here in America, and I’ll move onto something else.

Lavabit: How One Company Refused to Give FBI "Unrestricted" Access to Emails of 400,000 Customers





UPDATE 3


"The NSA Revelations Are Destroying IBM Hardware Sales In China"
"The first shot was fired on Monday. Teradata, which sells analytics tools for Big Data, warned that quarterly revenues plunged 21% in Asia and 19% in the Middle East and Africa. Wednesday evening, it was IBM’s turn to confess that its hardware sales in China had simply collapsed.

"Every word was colored by Edward Snowden’s revelations about the NSA’s hand-in-glove collaboration with American tech companies, from startups to mastodons like IBM.

"But the fiasco was tucked away under the lesser debacle of IBM’s overall revenues, which fell 4.1% from prior year, the sixth straight quarter of declines in a row. Software revenue inched up 1%, service revenue skidded 3%.

"At the hardware unit, Systems and Technology, revenue plunged 17%. Within that, sales of UNIX and Linux Power System servers plummeted a dizzying 38%. Governmental and corporate IT departments had just about stopped buying these machines.

"IBM quickly pointed out that there were some pockets of growth in its lineup: business analytics sales rose 8%, Smarter Planet 20%, and Cloud, that new Nirvana for tech, jumped 70%. But in the overall scheme of things, they didn’t amount to enough to make a big difference...."

...continued at Business Insider




UPDATE 4


“The Irony and the Hypocrisy, the U.S. Department of Defense Is Using Blackberry for Its Privacy”

The major selling point for BlackBerry has always been its security and privacy - the way it encrypted communication across its network was the only game in town - that is, until 2010, when governments threatened to “block encrypted BlackBerry corporate e-mail and messaging services” unless their security agencies were granted access to them.

This was the beginning of the demise of Blackberry. Because of The Surveillance State’s inability to spy on their own citizens, governments forced BlackBerry to change their business model, which in turn played a major role in the company’s collapse.

Ironic, considering the latest announcement from the U.S. Defense Department that approximately 98% of their smartphone purchases for their new network will be from BlackBerry because they offer the best option in the industry for secure communication.
“About 80,000 BlackBerrys will start being hooked up to the department’s management system at the end of this month, the Defense Information Systems Agency said in a statement last week. The network will also include 1,800 phones and tablets based on Apple Inc. (AAPL)’s iOS software and Google Inc. (GOOG)’s Android operating system….

“The Pentagon’s statement shows that Samsung Electronics Co. (SMSN), the biggest maker of Android devices, and Apple aren’t making the inroads into military smartphone sales that many expected because they can’t always meet the security specifications the Defense Department wants.”
BlackBerry CEO John Chen stated that:
“Many in the regulated industries -- those with the most stringent security needs -- still depend solely on BlackBerry to secure their mobile infrastructure. For governments, BlackBerry cannot just be replaced -- we are the only MDM provider to obtain ‘Authority to Operate’ on US Department of Defense (DoD) networks. This means the DoD is only allowed to use BlackBerry,… Across the globe, seven out of seven of the G7 governments are also BlackBerry customers.”
The hypocrisy of our government’s stance on secrecy is not lost on the citizenry as is evident with a recent case in Canada where a senior citizen refused to fill out a census form. One of the main reasons for her public disobedience was that she did not believe her private information would be secure:
“…she is worried about the safety and security of that data, considering Lockheed’s ties to the U.S. military and the absolute powers of the U.S. Patriot Act, which allows the government to demand data from any American company, regardless where that information originates.”
It appears that our governments believe in secrecy for themselves and transparency for everyone else. A model that is inconsistent with an open and just society. As Glenn Greenwald pointed out in his keynote address at the 30th Chaos Communication Congress (2), what the future holds, may it be a dystopian totalitarian surveillance state or one in which human rights are recognized, depends on us (full keynote and excerpt from the transcript provided below) :
“But I ultimately think that where the greatest hope lies is with the people in this room and the skills that all of you possess. The privacy technologies that have already been developed: the Tor Browser, PGP, OTR, and a variety of other products are making real inroads in preventing the US government and its allies from invading the sanctity of our communications.

“None of them is perfect. None of them is invulnerable, but they all pose a serious obstacle to the US government's ability to continue to destroy our privacy. And ultimately, the battle over Internet freedom, the question of whether or not the Internet will really be this tool of liberation and democratization and whether it'll become the worst tool of human oppression in all of human history will be fought out, I think, primarily, on the technological battlefield.

“The NSA and the US government certainly knows that. That's why Keith Alexander gets dressed up in his little costumes, his dad jeans and his edgy black shirt and goes to hacker conferences.

“And it's why corporations in Silicon Valley, like Palantir Technologies, spend so much effort depicting themselves as these kind-of rebellious, pro-civil-libertarian factions, as they spend most of their time in secret working hand-in-hand with the intelligence community and the CIA to increase their capabilities, because they want to recruit particularly younger brainpower onto their side, the side of destroying privacy and putting the Internet to use for the world's most powerful factions.

“What the outcome of this conflict is, what the Internet ultimately becomes really is not answerable in any definitive way now. It depends so much on what it is that we, as human beings, do. One of the most pressing questions is whether people like the ones who are in this room, and the people who have the skills that you have, now and in the future, will succumb to those temptations, and go to work for the very entities that are attempting to destroy privacy around the world, or whether you will put your talents, skills and resources, to defending human beings from those invasions, and continuing to create effective technologies to protect our privacy. I am very optimistic, because that power does lie in your hands.”

Glenn Greenwald Keynote on 30c3 (address begins at 5:00)



As for how much we actually know about The Surveillance State’s activities? The following video from Global Research TV is a good summary of our current predicament.

Justifying the Unjustifiable: Deconstructing the Lies of the NSA



Tuesday, September 17, 2013

Coming Out of the Dark Ages, Psychedelic Science, and Freedom Over Consciousness: Introduction to the Benefits of Cannabis, Psilocybin, Ayahuasca, LSD, DMT, and Ibogaine

Robert Anton Wilson, summarizing the works of Dr. Timothy Leary, stated in “The Eight Systems of Consciousness” that we are living through the Dark Ages “like the scholars of the Inquisitorial era”.
“None of Dr. Leary's most important studies have either suffered refutation or enjoyed confirmation, because enacted law, statues enacted after and because of Dr. Leary's research - makes it a crime for any other psychologists or psychiatrists to replicate such research. I know you've heard that the Inquisition ended in 1819, but in many areas of psychotherapy and medicine, the U.S. government has taken up where the Vatican left off.” - Robert Anton Wilson

Robert Anton Wilson: Consciousness, Conspiracy & Coincidence



The tides, however, are turning. With the federal government stating that they will not interfere with the legalization of cannabis in Washington State and Colorado, and corporate shills like John McCain and mainstream pundits like Dr. Sanjay Gupta favoring legalization of cannabis, we might well be on our way towards an age of enlightenment.

In Historic Move, Feds Won't Prosecute States That Legalize Pot



click to enlarge - Source: “Legality of cannabis by country”

Below you will find some relevant information regarding this topic; from where we’ve been, to how far we’ve come, and what we have to look forward to:
  1. UN’s Single Convention on Narcotic Drugs

  2. Parkinson's and Cannabis

  3. Psychedelic Science: Psilocybin, Ayahuasca, LSD, DMT, and Ibogaine

  4. The Five Stages of Destruction

  5. Freedom Over Consciousness

  6. How to End Prohibition


I. UN’s Single Convention on Narcotic Drugs


In 1961, on behest of the United States of America, the United Nations passed the Single Convention on Narcotic Drugs (full text), an international treaty signed, at the time, by 73 nations - 184 at present - to “prohibit production and supply of specific (nominally narcotic) drugs and of drugs with similar effects except under licence for specific purposes.” As of March 2005, 116 drugs (full list - pdf) were controlled under this Convention:
“Earlier treaties had only controlled opium, coca, and derivatives such as morphine, heroin and cocaine. The Single Convention, adopted in 1961, consolidated those treaties and broadened their scope to include cannabis and drugs whose effects are similar to those of the drugs specified….

“This treaty has since been supplemented by the Convention on Psychotropic Substances [1971], which controls LSD, MDMA, and other psychoactive pharmaceuticals, and the United Nations Convention Against Illicit Traffic in Narcotic Drugs and Psychotropic Substances [1988], which strengthens provisions against money laundering and other drug-related offenses.….

“The Single Convention has been extremely influential in standardizing national drug control laws. In particular, the United States' Controlled Substances Act of 1970 and the United Kingdom's Misuse of Drugs Act 1971 were designed to fulfill treaty obligations.”
Even though the Preamble of the Single Convention affirmed the importance of the medical use of these controlled substances, stating that “narcotic drugs continue to be indispensable for the relief of pain and suffering”, very few scientists or medical practitioners have been given authorization to conduct research into the beneficial properties of these drugs. This has resulted in decades of lost opportunity to study these substances, causing a tremendous amount of anguish for those who suffer the most in our societies.

II. Parkinson's and Cannabis


For example, the stranglehold that these international treaties and national prohibition laws have had on the world’s scientific community have been so powerful that one of the first studies into the benefits of cannabis for Parkinson’s patients was only just recently published in 2004. The study conducted in the Czech Republic entitled “Survey on Cannabis Use in Parkinson’s Disease: Subjective Improvement of Motor Symptoms” (pdf) reported:
“An anonymous questionnaire sent to all patients attending the Prague Movement Disorder Centre revealed that 25% of 339 respondents had taken cannabis and 45.9% of these described some form of benefit….

“We realized that after this public information, some of our patients spontaneously started to take cannabis to alleviate their PD symptoms. The aim of this study therefore is to evaluate their possible experience with cannabis….

“Due to the illegal status of cannabis in the Czech Republic, it was impossible to run a proper clinical trial and we had to use an anonymous retrospective questionnaire-based study; we are well aware of its limitations. Questionnaires are used quite commonly in clinical research because they enable obtaining data from a large group of patients; however, results from this type of study cannot be conclusive and should rather serve as a baseline for future research.”

Taylor French on Medical Cannabis for Parkinson's Disease



The restrictions put on the scientific community due to the illegality of cannabis and other substances are appalling. Not just because these drugs have the ability to alleviate suffering for “more than 52% of people over the age of 85” that suffer from Parkinson's, but because these drugs are known to have multiple other benefits, such as dealing with “pain, depression, anxiety, and posttraumatic stress disorder” – and those are just some of the benefits of cannabis, which is only one of the “five categories of illicit drugs - narcotics, stimulants, depressants (sedatives), hallucinogens, and cannabis” – listed in the CIA’s World Factbook.

III. Psychedelic Science: Psilocybin, Ayahuasca, LSD, DMT, and Ibogaine


Many across the globe are discovering the benefits of cannabis and other psychoactive drugs; in large part due to the compassion they feel for their loved ones forcing them to seek both cure and relief outside of the conventional medical community. This has proven to be a very wise choice since many that have incorporated these substances and plants into their lives have indicated that their quality of life has drastically improved:
“Giffiths’ study involved 18 healthy adults, average age 46, who participated in five eight-hour drug sessions with either psilocybin — at varying doses — or placebo. Nearly all the volunteers were college graduates and 78% participated regularly in religious activities; all were interested in spiritual experience.

“Fourteen months after participating in the study, 94% of those who received the drug said the experiment was one of the top five most meaningful experiences of their lives; 39% said it was the single most meaningful experience.”
Hopefully scientific research into this field will grow as the influence of prohibitionists lessens on the world stage. Maybe then our medical knowledge will evolve in the same manner as many other fields have evolved, thanks in large part to the use of psychedelics.

As Gabor Maté, “a Hungarian-born Canadian physician who specializes in the study and treatment of addiction”, pointed out in a speech delivered of 20 April 2013 entitled, “Psychedelics and Unlocking the Unconscious; From Cancer to Addiction":
“What if we actually got that human beings are bio-psycho-social creatures by nature, and actually bio-psycho-spiritual creatures by nature—which is to say that our biology is inseparable from our psychological emotional and spiritual existence—and therefore what manifests in the body is not some isolated and unique event or misfortune, but a manifestation of what my life has been in interaction with my psychological and social and spiritual environment?

“Well, if we had that kind of understanding then we would approach illness and health in a completely different fashion.

“What if, furthermore, we understood something in the West which has been the underlying core insight of Eastern spiritual pathways and aboriginal shamanic pathways around the world, which is that human beings are not their personalities, we’re not our thoughts, we’re not our emotions, we are not our dysfunctional or functional dynamics, but that at the core there is a true self that is somehow connected to—in fact not connected to but part of—nature and creation.

“An illness from that perspective represents a loss of that connection, a loss of that unity, a loss of that belonging to a much larger entity. And therefore, to treat the illness or the symptom as the problem is actually to ignore the real possibility that the symptom and the illness are themselves symptoms, rather than the fundamental problems.”

“It’s in that perspective then, that I’ve come to understand, quite before my acquaintance with ayahuasca, but that's how I’ve come to understand human illness and dysfunction. Which is to say that illness and dysfunction represent the products or the consequences of a lifelong interaction with our environment, particularly our psychological and social environment, and that they represent a deep disconnection from our true selves.”

Dr. Gabor Maté: Ayahuasca and Addiction Treatment



The following 1997 BBC Horizon documentary, “Psychedelic Science” by Bill Eagles, is an excellent introduction to some of the benefits of some of these substances:
“In the late 1960s, human experiments with psychedelic drugs were brought to a halt. Government reacted to the anarchy of the hippy counter-culture. The drug-crazed Charles Manson slayings came to symbolise public fear of the street use of LSD. Funding ceased, and the few researchers who battled on were ostracised. But lost in the blanket ban were remarkable research projects in the field of psychiatry that held out new hope for the treatment of schizophrenia and alcoholism. Bill Eagles' extraordinary film tells the story of a handful of dedicated scientists who have struggled to make psychedelic research respectable again.”

BBC Horizon: Psychedelic Science - (DMT, LSD, Ibogaine)



IV. The Five Stages of Destruction


Fear of persecution has resulted in tens of millions of people suffering needlessly to appease those that rule us in their attempts to maintain control and to prolong a war on drugs that they profit from. This is why Robert Anton Wilson stated that “Voltaire announced the Age of Reason two centuries too soon. We are still in the Dark Ages.”

At approximately 1:27:00 into the following amazing documentary, The House I Live In, reflecting on the work of Raul Hilberg, Richard Lawrence Miller provides a summary of the step-by-step process of destruction as it relates to the war on drugs (relevant video segment follows the full documentary):
1. Identification – a group of people is identified as the cause of the problems in that society. People begin to perceive their fellow citizens as bad or evil. Their lives become worthless.

2. Ostracism - we learn how to hate these people, how to take their jobs away, how to make it harder for them to survive. People lose their place to live and are often forced into ghettos where they are physically isolated, separated from the rest of society.

3. Confiscation - people lose their rights, they lose civil liberties. The laws change so that it becomes easier for people to be searched and for their property to be confiscated, and once you start taking people’s property away, it makes it easier to start taking people away.

4. Concentration - the State begins to concentrate undesirables into facilities such as prisons and camps. People lose their rights. People can’t vote any more. They can’t have children any more. Often their labor is exploited in a systematic form.

5. Annihilation - this might be indirect, by withholding medical care, by withholding food, or by preventing further births. Or it may be direct, where death is inflicted, where people are deliberately killed.

The House I Live In

Note: I’m not sure how long this video will stay up on youtube so watching it sooner rather than later might be a good idea.

Excerpt: The Chain of Destruction (Holocaust in Slow Motion)


V. Freedom Over Consciousness


So while dinosaurs like Canada’s Stephen Harper spew garbage trying to justify their stance on prohibition by getting lost in their own circular argument, due to the liberation of information that has come about thanks to the advent of the internet, people are beginning to challenge long standing dogmas and are demanding the freedom to choose their own path.

As our centralized corporate governments try to enforce archaic agendas by desperately waging war on science, we should keep in mind that there are countless benefits associated with prohibited substances. By developing a symbiotic relationship with psychedelics, illicit drugs if you wish, we have benefited for much of human history, and this fact is well known in the scientific community. Some of the greatest thinkers of our time have been bold enough to point out the obvious, that the war on drugs is a war on consciousness:
“I stand here invoking the hard-won right of freedom of speech to call for and demand another right to be recognised and that is the right of adult sovereignty over consciousness. There’s a war on consciousness in our society, and if we as adults are not allowed to make sovereign decisions about what to experience with our own consciousness while doing no harm to others, including the decision to use responsibly ancient and sacred visionary plants, then we cannot claim to be free in any way and it’s useless for our society to go around the world imposing our form of democracy on others while we nourish this rot at the heart of society and we do not allow individual freedom over consciousness.” - Graham Hancock, 12 January 2013, TEDx conference in Whitechapel, London

The War on Consciousness - Graham Hancock



VI. How to End Prohibition


As for what we, personally, can do to help end America’s war on drugs? Our best option is to support grassroots organizations that are working towards repealing prohibition, they did, after all, get the ball rolling on this.
In 1973 Oregon became the first state to modify its law and decriminalize marijuana use, which meant possession became a civil offense punishable by a fine. A key reason for this legislative change was pressure exerted by the National Organization to Reform Marijuana Laws (NORML), a private citizens group founded in 1971 that believed drug laws were unfair to recreational users."
Below you will find the names and websites of some of the more prominent groups spearheading the battle to end prohibition in the United States and Canada. They are trying to bring sanity back into our lives and I’m sure they would appreciate our support as much as we appreciate their efforts.

Organizations Working Towards Ending Prohibition

  • Students for Sensible Drug Policy (SSDP)

  • Law Enforcement Against Prohibition (LEAP)

  • Erowid

  • Moms for Marijuana

  • Multidisciplinary Association for Psychedelic Studies (MAPS)

  • Marijuana Policy Project (MPP)

  • DrugSense

  • Educators For Sensible Drug Policy (EFSDP)

  • National Organization for the Reform of Marijuana Laws (USA) and NORML Canada

  • The November Coalition

  • Safer Alternative For Enjoyable Recreation (SAFER)

  • Drug Policy Alliance (DPA Network)

  • Saturday, September 14, 2013

    Four Articles and Four Videos: Computerization of Jobs, Determination, NSA, Jacob Appelbaum and Edward Snowden, United States Torturing Iran, Chomsky, Israel’s Propaganda Machine, and Max Blumenthal’s Breaking Point


    Further information at: Not-so-Random Information: Introduction and Table of Contents

    1) Report Suggests Nearly Half of U.S. Jobs Are Vulnerable to Computerization - “A recent report (which is not online, but summarized here) from the Oxford Martin School’s Programme on the Impacts of Future Technology attempts to quantify the extent of that threat. It concludes that 45 percent of American jobs are at high risk of being taken by computers within the next two decades. The authors believe this takeover will happen in two stages. First, computers will start replacing people in especially vulnerable fields like transportation/logistics, production labor, and administrative support. Jobs in services, sales, and construction may also be lost in this first stage. Then, the rate of replacement will slow down due to bottlenecks in harder-to-automate fields such engineering. This ‘technological plateau’ will be followed by a second wave of computerization, dependent upon the development of good artificial intelligence. This could next put jobs in management, science and engineering, and the arts at risk.”…

    “‘Our findings thus imply that as technology races ahead, low-skill workers will reallocate to tasks that are non-susceptible to computerization—i.e., tasks that required creative and social intelligence,’ the authors write. ‘For workers to win the race, however, they will have to acquire creative and social skills.’”

    2) Richie Parker: Drive -- SC Featured - “Tom Rinaldi reports on the life of Richie Parker, who overcame being born without arms to become a chassis and body component designer for Hendrick Motorsports.”



    3) N.S.A. Able to Foil Basic Safeguards of Privacy on Web - “The National Security Agency is winning its long-running secret war on encryption, using supercomputers, technical trickery, court orders and behind-the-scenes persuasion to undermine the major tools protecting the privacy of everyday communications in the Internet age, according to newly disclosed documents.

    “The agency has circumvented or cracked much of the encryption, or digital scrambling, that guards global commerce and banking systems, protects sensitive data like trade secrets and medical records, and automatically secures the e-mails, Web searches, Internet chats and phone calls of Americans and others around the world, the documents show.

    “Many users assume — or have been assured by Internet companies — that their data is safe from prying eyes, including those of the government, and the N.S.A. wants to keep it that way. The agency treats its recent successes in deciphering protected information as among its most closely guarded secrets, restricted to those cleared for a highly classified program code-named Bullrun, according to the documents, provided by Edward J. Snowden, the former N.S.A. contractor.”

    4) Whistleblower Award - Jacob Appelbaum answers for Edward Snowden - “Edward Snowden receives the Whistleblower Award. For the first time Transparency International Deutschland e.V. contributes to the award, which is given every two years by the Vereinigung Deutscher Wissenschaftler (VDW e.V.) and der German Section of the International Association Of Lawyers Against Nuclear Arms (IALANA e.V.). With the award persons are honored, who reveal malpractices and dangerous developments for humans and society, democracy, peace, and the environment. Due to the courageous actions of Edward J. Snowden the world has gained insights into the surveillance and espionage practices of intelligence agencies. Every single one of us can be affected by them at any time and without there being any grounds for suspicion. The pressing problems associated with whistleblowing are analyzed in a festive dedication to the honorable Edward Snowden. The focus of the lecture by Prof. Dr. Foschepoth is the latitude of the secret services in Germany. Through this ceremony, the awarding organizations wished to strengthen their demand to the German government to offer US citizen Snowden, in gratitude and all sincerity, accommodation and protection in Germany.” Transcript of Snowden’s message available HERE.



    5) CIA Confirms Role in 1953 Iran Coup - “Marking the sixtieth anniversary of the overthrow of Iranian Prime Minister Mohammad Mosaddeq, the National Security Archive is today posting recently declassified CIA documents on the United States' role in the controversial operation. American and British involvement in Mosaddeq's ouster has long been public knowledge, but today's posting includes what is believed to be the CIA's first formal acknowledgement that the agency helped to plan and execute the coup.”

    “The explicit reference to the CIA's role appears in a copy of an internal history, The Battle for Iran, dating from the mid-1970s. The agency released a heavily excised version of the account in 1981 in response to an ACLU lawsuit, but it blacked out all references to TPAJAX, the code name for the U.S.-led operation. Those references appear in the latest release. Additional CIA materials posted today include working files from Kermit Roosevelt, the senior CIA officer on the ground in Iran during the coup. They provide new specifics as well as insights into the intelligence agency's actions before and after the operation.”

    6) Noam Chomsky: U.S. Has Been "Torturing" Iran for 60 Years, Since 1953 CIA-Led Coup - “In this web-only exclusive, MIT Professor Emeritus Noam Chomsky talks about the past 60 years of U.S.-Iranian relations since the 1953 coup organized by the CIA. ‘The crucial fact about Iran, which we should begin with, is that for the past 60 years not a day has passed in which the U.S. has not been torturing Iranians,’ Chomsky says. ‘It began with a military coup which overthrew the parliamentary regime in 1953.’”



    7) Students offered grants if they tweet pro-Israeli propaganda - “In a campaign to improve its image abroad, the Israeli government plans to provide scholarships to hundreds of students at its seven universities in exchange for their making pro-Israel Facebook posts and tweets to foreign audiences.The students making the posts will not reveal online that they are funded by the Israeli government, according to correspondence about the plan revealed in the Haaretz newspaper.”

    “Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu’s office, which will oversee the programme, confirmed its launch and wrote that its aim was to ‘strengthen Israeli public diplomacy and make it fit the changes in the means of information consumption’. The government’s hand is to be invisible to the foreign audiences. Daniel Seaman, the official who has been planning the effort, wrote in a letter on 5 August to a body authorising government projects that ‘the idea requires not making the role of the state stand out and therefore it is necessary to adhere to great involvement of the students themselves, without political linkage or affiliation’.

    8) Max Blumenthal: Something Snapped when Israel Attacked Gaza - “In Pt 3 of 4 of Reality Asserts Itself with Paul Jay, Max Blumenthal talks about the affect on him of Israel's attack on Gaza and his break with American liberalism”

    Wednesday, September 11, 2013

    What will make or break the United States of America is the truth about 9/11: Investigate the theories behind the conspiracies

    What will make or break the United States of America is the truth about 9/11, not its monetary policy, fiscal irresponsibility, lack of transparency, crony capitalistic economy, its inability to protect its citizenry, or even its brutal foreign policy. The truth about what transpired on 11 September 2001 will decide the fate of the United States of America. Everything else is secondary.



    I. Truth and Lies of 9/11


    On 9/11 the world changed. Not because the attacks on the United States were unique, since there have been many documented cases of false flag operations throughout history. The world changed because we forfeited the freedom of generations to come to obtain a delusional sense of security from an institution, an institution that has begun multiple wars of aggression, incurring trillions of dollars of debt and causing hundreds of thousands of deaths in the process.

    This same institution was then allowed to investigate itself for its inability to protect its citizens from an attack that has been the catalyst for a tremendous amount of misery across the globe.

    This investigation, which cost only a fraction of what some of the most insignificant government investigations have previously cost, resulted in a report that did not even conclusively link Osama Bin Laden to the terror attacks, let alone answer the questions posed by the families of its victims. So why was such an inadequate document as the 9/11 Commission Report ever produced?

    The reason that corporations like the United States of America even bother to release “official” documents so full of holes that you could fly a plane through them, is because by doing so every branch of government must regurgitate this “official” story. This means that our schools become indoctrination centers established for the proliferation of war. The 9/11 Commission was established, and its report published, to protect those in power and to maintain the status quo:
    “Former Mayor Rudy Giuliani joined Sept. 11 family members and college professors on Tuesday [2009] at a hotel blocks from the World Trade Center site to unveil a plan to teach middle and high school students about the 2001 terrorist attacks.

    “The 9/11 curriculum, believed to be the first comprehensive educational plan focusing on the attacks, is expected to be tested this year at schools in New York City, California, New Jersey, Alabama, Indiana, Illinois and Kansas….

    “The curriculum is taught through videos, lessons and interactive exercises, including one that requires students to use Google Earth software to map global terrorist activity. One of the main goals is to help students entering middle and high school, who may been too young to have strong memories of the attacks, to develop a tangible connection to what happened.”

    Giuliani pushing 9/11 re-education course for public schools



    The truth about 9/11 is the elephant in the room, and it’s not going away any time soon.

    The “official” story that the US government has been peddling has completely fallen apart, and the reality that there is something very wrong with the so-called “War on Terror” is beginning to destabilize the United States. Americans are beginning to accept the fact that there is a lot more to 9/11 than their government will admit, and they are looking for answers.

    9/11 Truth vs Mainstream Media


    The following two videos by James Corbett of The Corbett Report are an excellent summary of some of the questions regarding 9/11. The first video is a short introduction to the topic while the second video is a full episode meant to engage the 9/11 community and continued our dialogue on how we can begin a real investigation into what transpired on that day:
    “As we approach the 12th anniversary of 9/11, it is time for 9/11 truth to mature as a movement before it stagnates into insignificance. Either the movement will live up to its potential by naming names and identifying suspects in the crime, or it will become another JFK assassination investigation, doomed to spend half a century fighting pointless territorial battles while the real perpetrators walk free. Join us for this 9/11 anniversary edition of The Corbett Report as we ask the question and demand an answer: Who was really behind the attacks?”

    9/11 Truth and the Way Forward: Starting a Real Criminal Investigation



    Episode 280 – Who Was Really Behind the 9/11 Attacks?



    II. Investigate the Theories Behind the Conspiracies


    One of the main problems with our society is that words have lost their meaning. In spoken languages, the tone of a word can be used to make inferences that may be completely unrelated to the meaning of the word. This is especially true when dealing with propaganda. When certain people or organizations want to dismiss an argument, they tend to phrase words in such a way that makes them appear illogical or treacherous if given credence.

    One of these words is “conspiracy”, and when put together with the word “theory” it becomes the infamous phrase “Conspiracy Theory”. Let’s take a look at the definition of these two words and try to figure out why they have been used to discredit not only people, but history, data, and facts.

    The legal definition of conspiracy is “an agreement between two or more persons to commit an illegal or unlawful act, or to achieve a legal act but by illegal or unlawful means.” A theory is “a concept that is not yet verified but that if true would explain certain facts or phenomena.”

    So a conspiracy theory is a conjecture that two or more people may have planned an unlawful act, and if certain facts are proven to be true, then the conspiracy theory becomes reality.

    As we all know, throughout history our governments and politicians have done exactly what the above states. They have conspired to obtain power, to overthrow governments, to destroy their political rivals, and to make money. Politics is littered with conspiracies but the mainstream media treats this word with contempt. Have we forgotten Watergate, Tonkin, Iran-Contra, Basra, Pinochet, Mohammad Mosaddeq, Reichstag, Pearl Harbor, Oklahoma City, Waco, Ruby Ridge, Pine Ridge, COINTELPRO, Oswald and JFK, Northwoods, Condor, Iraq, 9/11, LIBOR, Robo-Signing round one, Robo-Signing round two, HSBC, The War on Drugs, and much more?

    So in the phrase “conspiracy theory”, it is not the conspiracy that needs to be scrutinized, but the data on which the theory is based on. And this is where the problem lies. Neither the mainstream media nor those in power have any desire to investigate the theory behind the argument. If they did, many questions could arise from the investigation which in turn could be devastating for the status quo.

    So next time the phrase “conspiracy theory” is used to discredit someone, just point out that the conspiracy is not in question, but rather the data being presented from the theory. Then ask them what part of the argument they disagree with. You’ll most likely find out that they know less about the theory behind the conspiracy than they know about history. This is when you can direct them to the teachings of Noam Chomsky - regarded as a leading contemporary historian, the author of over 100 books, and voted the "world's top public intellectual" in 2005.

    As for where to begin with Chomsky’s vast library, may I recommend the following video from 2006 in which he is asked what he would say to George W. Bush if he had one minute alone with him. His reply:
    “To tell you the honest truth, I doubt very much that George Bush has much to do with policy formation, I mean, the way the President is more or less like royalty in the United States. So the Queen of England opens Parliament with a speech, right, but nobody asks whether she believes it, or whether she understands it. Her role is a ceremonial role. It’s a role that’s connected with unity of the people, patriotism, obedience, and so on and so forth. The content is something else, that’s by people who run the country.

    “The people who run the country are those in political office, but much more importantly their associates and the concentrations of private economic power. That’s where the country is really run, and that shouldn’t be a big secret either. America’s leading social philosopher John Dewey, who’s right very mainstream American, he pointed out that once, that as long as we have what he called industrial feudalism rather than industrial democracy - that means tyrannical totalitarian institutions running the economy – command economies basically, instead of industrial democracy where workers control management, as long as we have that than ‘politics will be the shadow cast by business over society’, and that’s approximately accurate. It’s not like the State has no independent choices, it does, but an amalgam.

    “Exactly the role that George Bush plays in this is very dubious, questionable. In some cases like say Ronald Reagan, he probably didn’t even know what the policies where. He was reading off his note cards or the teleprompter or something like that. And Bush may have some knowledge of them but I think he’s mostly a ceremonial figure trained to act in certain ways and so on. So if I had a minute with him, I would say, you know, have you talked to god lately or something like that.”


    III. Why the Truth of 9/11 Must be Revealed


    9/11 is different from the assassination of JFK or the Oklahoma City bombing. Those events were blamed on internal patsies, 9/11 was not.

    As a direct consequence of 9/11, multiple wars are now being fought while multiple other wars are being planned with “all options on the table,” directly implying the use of Nuclear Weapons.

    The most important thing to keep in mind regarding 9/11 is that when a government cannot even tell the truth about the quality of the air that its citizens are breathing, why would anyone believe a single word they uttered about anything?

    Immortal Technique on Obama, 9/11 truth & Corporate America



    If we are going to continue our campaign of spreading death and destruction to the rest of the world and ourselves, then we should at least understand why we are doing it and who is orchestrating it. By beginning a new investigation into the events of 9/11, and in the process bringing those who committed this horrendous crime to trial, we will be able to break this chain of ignorance which has promised to bring us and our children war without end.
    “US troops could be in the Middle East for another 50 years, according to the longest serving commander of the Qatar-based US Central Command. General John Abazaid, who retired in May [2007], said the ‘strategic situation’ in the region - the rise of extremism and the global dependence on oil - would necessitate a long-term presence.

    "‘Over time, we will have to shift the burden of the military fight from our forces directly to regional forces, and we will have to play an indirect role. But we shouldn't assume for even a minute that in the next 25 to 50 years the American military might be able to come home, relax and take it easy….

    "‘I'm not saying this is a war for oil, but I am saying that oil fuels an awful lot of geopolitical moves that political powers may have there. And it is absolutely essential that we in the United States of America figure out how, in the long run, to lessen our dependency on foreign energy….

    "‘I would characterise what we're doing now as 80% military, 20% diplomatic, economic, political, educational, informational, intelligence, etc. You've got to take that equation and change it. Make it 80% those other things.’"

    Eisenhower warns us of the Military Industrial Complex