USGIF: Where Our National Security Begins

While I was searching for more information (specifically about James R. Clapper Jr.) to add to the The Menace of the Military Mind post last night, I stumbled across a rather interesting corpo-government website that provides a nice behind-the-scenes look at some of the movers, shakers and decision makers who are responsible for our ever-growing World Wide Spy Machine. Here are some bits & pieces of what I’ve browsed through so far…Enjoy! ~Reb

 United States Geospatial Intelligence Foundation, Inc

USGIF - “In 2003, a group of leading authorities realized an inherent need for a unified vision and approach to promoting the geospatial intelligence tradecraft. This group created the successful GEO-INTEL 2003 conference—the predecessor to the annual GEOINT Symposium—and in early 2004 established USGIF. The Foundation’s mission was, and continues to be, to bring together government, industry, academia, professional organizations and individuals for the advancement of the geospatial intelligence tradecraft as it relates to national security.

Being the first and only organization of its kind, USGIF has helped to advance the tradecraft through its many events and programs, such as the highly acclaimed GEOINT Symposium and technology focused Tech Days. The Foundation currently has more than 200 sustaining member organizations supporting and assisting in executing the Foundation’s objectives. The Foundation also has made education a top priority, exemplified by its scholarships, college and university accreditation programs, grants to underprivileged K-12 schools and other initiatives.

USGIF is dedicated to bringing together the many disciplines involved in the geospatial intelligence sector to exchange ideas, share best practices and promote the education and importance of a national geospatial intelligence agenda.”

USGIF is located at 2325 Dulles Corner Boulevard, Suite 450, Herndon, VA 20171.

Download USGIF Fact Sheet

ProjectGEO- “Oct 23, 2012 In this special coverage interviewing USGIF President Keith Masback we dive into detail on several topics including what the USGIF is, it’s mission, and it’s impact on the GEOINT community. Keith also talks about the Young Professionals Group (YPG) and the GEOINT symposium. Watch the video to get exciting insight into the USGIF.

Keynote Speakers At GEOINT

(National Snitch-N- Snoop Convention?)

Keynotes for GEOINT 2013*

January 9, 2014 -Several speakers have reconfirmed their keynote addresses for the rescheduled GEOINT2013* Symposium, to be held April 14-17, 2014, at the Tampa Convention Center in Tampa, Fla.

Confirmed speakers include:

• The Honorable James R. Clapper, Director of National Intelligence (DNI)
• LTG Michael T. Flynn, U.S. Army, Director, Defense Intelligence Agency (DIA)
• Ms. Letitia A. Long, Director, National Geospatial-Intelligence Agency (NGA)
• ADM William H. McRaven, U.S. Navy, Commander, U.S. Special Operations
Command (USSOCOM)
• Ms. Betty J. Sapp, Director, National Reconnaissance Office (NRO)
• Mr. Robert Scoble & Mr. Shel Israel, Co-Authors, “Age of Context”

The annual GEOINT Symposium is the nation’s premier intelligence event. It offers a wealth of quality information, cutting-edge technologies, and top-notch activities that keep attendees coming back year after year. In addition to insightful keynote addresses and though-provoking panels with leaders from the Defense and Intelligence communities, the GEOINT Symposium provides attendees with an unparalleled opportunity to network at various social events and explore new technologies in a 100,000-square-foot exhibit hall.

GEOINTv 2012-Booth Tour Northrop Grumman (Video)

USGIF ACCOUNT LEVELS AND PRICING 

MEMBERSHIP DIRECTORY

USGIF released its 2013 Membership Directory in the Q1 issue of trajectory magazine.

The directory contains brief descriptions and contact information for all 224 USGIF sustaining member organizations. The directory is also complemented by an online capabilities index, which lists more than 50 products and services the membership organizations provide.

Download the 2013 USGIF Membership Directory

USGIF BOARD MEMBERS

USGIF’s Africa Working Group Hosts First Event

Project Geo – S2 E6 – Apocalyptic Maps

Take Action Against The Trans-Pacific Partnership

via Sum Of Us – “Congress is preparing to sign away its authority on the Trans-Pacific Partnership, a trade deal that reads like a corporate lobbyist’s wildest dream.

The TPP would make it easier for corporations to sue our government, prevent regulation of GMOs, and keep people in impoverished countries from accessing life-saving medicines. And worst of all, the full text of the deal has been kept secret from the public, and even Congress doesn’t have full access – even though hundreds of corporate lobbyists who have helped write the agreement do!

Now President Obama is trying to ram this deal through by seeking “fast-track” authority, which would prevent Congress from making any changes to the deal and stifle any debate. Members of Congress from both sides of the aisle have spoken out against fast track authority, and if we can get more Democrats to join them, we’ll have a real chance to stop this corporate power grab.

Rep. Sandy Levin is key. He’s the top Democrat on the congressional committee that’s responsible for trade policy, but he’s breaking with most of the party to support a fast-track bill. Can you call his office today and tell him to stop fast-track?

Our government is negotiating right now to lock a deal. Call Rep. Levin and tell him not to sign off on a deal the American people can’t read!

The Trans-Pacific Partnership (TPP) is called a trade deal, but it’s really a corporate wish-list aimed at attacking everything from environmental protections to affordable medicines to internet freedoms.

If the deal is signed, future laws designed to protect consumers, our health or our environment could be challenged by corporations that claim that the law reduces their profit — and there is nothing we or our governments could do to stop them.

Corporate lobbyists and government insiders are keeping the text of the deal secret because they know that if the full details got out into public view, we wouldn’t like what we saw. Even Congress can’t see the bill, but the Obama administration wants authority to negotiate without any oversight. But we already know enough through leaks to know it’s really bad. We can’t let this sail through without public scrutiny, and the only way we can give the public time to review the bill is by stopping fast track now!

Our government is negotiating right now to lock a deal. Call Rep. Levin and tell him not to sign off on a deal the American people can’t read!

Here’s what we need to do:

  1. Call Rep. Levin’s office at (202) 225-4961
  2. When you get someone on the line, give your name and say you’re calling to oppose fast-track authority for the negotiation of the TPP. You can make up your own comment, or just use this sample comment:

    Sample quote:

    I’m deeply concerned that trade agreements like the Trans-Pacific Partnership are undermining our democracy to enrich corporations. Congress should not sign off on a deal that has been kept secret from the American people. Leader Pelosi should oppose fast-track authority for the TPP and call on her colleagues to do the same.

Here are some additional talking points if you’re looking for more to say:

  • The agreement would expand secret tribunals where corporations can sue governments for profits lost due to environmental or consumer protection legislation.
  • In addition to being NAFTA-on-steroids, the TPP is SOPA-Redux: it would let media corporations censor the internet to protect their profits. It could even make you liable for criminal penalties for downloading a song.
  • The deal would strengthen Big Pharma’s IP monopolies and make it impossible for poor people around the world to get lifesaving generic drugs.
  • The TPP could force countries to scrap regulations on GMO crops.
  • The deal would drive down wages and undermine workers’ right to organize, speeding up the global race to bottom.

These are just a few reasons we need to stop the TPP. Make a call today and tell Rep. Sandy Levin not to sign off on this massive corporate power grab.”

Thanks for all you do,
Kaytee, Paul, Rob, and the team at SumOfUs

Troubled Water

“Water is of course the most important raw material we have today in the world. It’s a question of whether we should privatise the normal water supply for the population. And there are two different opinions on the matter. The one opinion, which I think is extreme, is represented by the NGOs, who bang on about declaring water a public right. That means as a human being you should have a right to water. That’s an extreme solution. And the other view says water is a foodstuff like any other. and like any other foodstuff it should have a market better. Personally I think it’s better to give foodstuff a market value . . .” Peter Brabeck, CEO, Nestle 

-$-

“Water is largely taken for granted by consumers but it’s becoming “blue gold” in the 21st century. Troubled Water examines the threats to public water systems and watersheds using the East Coast of Vancouver Island as a case study. Privatization, public private partnerships (P3′s or P4′s Public Pays for Private Profits), privately owned community watersheds, vulnerable aquifers, over-development, ground water contamination and international trade agreements all undermine the safety and security of public water systems, public ownership and the fundamental human right to access clean drinking water.

Profiling a variety of water sources that represent typical water systems across North America, Troubled Water uncovers the common threats to these systems. The film highlights some good examples of watershed stewardship and encourages viewers to work toward maintaining water as a public trust in their own communities.”

DVD copies of Troubled Water are available at http://www.manlymedia.com

Why The USDA Isn’t Recalling Contaminated Chickens

“The latest outbreak is a stark example of this dynamic. Foster Farms’ official statement asks consumers to see their tainted chicken as a learning experience: “The alert that regulators issued based on illnesses over the past seven months emphasizes the need to fully cook and properly handle raw poultry.”

Nation Of Change – “As an especially vicious salmonella outbreak sickens hundreds across the country, U.S. Department of Agriculture regulators have declined to crack down on the poultry processing plants that spread the pathogen. On Monday, the USDA threatened to close the California-based Foster Farms facilities, but decided to keep the plant open under scrutiny on Thursday night after Foster Farms submitted a plan for “immediate substantive changes to their slaughter and processing to allow for continued operations.”

The outbreak has sickened at least 300 people in 17 states, and 42 percent of the victims have been hospitalized — twice the normal hospitalization rate for salmonella. Yet neither state nor federal regulators have issued a recall order, stating the chicken is safe iffully cooked.

Industry publication Meating place interviewed Daniel Engeljohn, a USDA Food Safety and Inspection Service official, about the decision to keep the infected meat on the shelves. Engeljohn pointed to a federal court decision in 2001 that crippled the USDA’s ability to take meaningful action against meat processors that violate food safety standards. The notoriously conservative Fifth Circuit Court of Appeals ruled that the USDA did not have the authority to shut down Supreme Beef, a meat processing plant that repeatedly flunked tests for salmonella contamination. The justification for this ruling was that the meat was safe if it was cooked properly. Thanks to this decision, the USDA has only the power to ask the company at fault to recall their products voluntarily.” Full Story

Chicken products blamed for salmonella outbreak still on store shelves

Published on Oct 11, 2013

Consumers are confused about why Foster Farms chicken is still for sale when it made more than 270 people sick. But the USDA doesn t require recalls for salmonella, because it is widely found where chickens are raised.

 

Pennsylvania Pays; Caterpillar Stays

 

Why the Fight Against Corporate Welfare is So Hard

Crony Chronicles – “Caterpillar, a company with a market cap of nearly $55 billion and 125,000 employees, wasn’t sure if it wanted to stay in York County, PA, an agricultural county in southern PA. Faced with the threat of losing such a prestigious firm, PA decided to give Caterpillar a host of economic incentives to entice them to stay. When faced with the prospect of real job loss, it’s hard for states and counties to just let them leave…” Read More

Caterpillar distribution center to stay in York County

ydr.com – “Caterpillar will keep its distribution center – along with its 200-employee workforce – in York County.

The decision, announced Monday at the company’s Memory Lane facility, comes about one year after Caterpillar said it might move the Springettsbury Township logistics/distribution operation to another site somewhere in the eastern United States…

…Lyndsay Frank, spokeswoman for the state Department of Community and Economic Development, said the company was offered a financial package from the Governor’s Action Team, a point of contact for companies looking to establish new business operations in Pennsylvania or companies considering retention/expansion of existing facilities.

That package, Frank said, includes a $350,000 Pennsylvania First Grant and a $88,650 Guaranteed Free Training Grant.

In addition, the company has been “encouraged” to apply for a $2 million Pennsylvania Industrial Development Authority Loan and a $4 million loan from the state’s Machine and Equipment Loan Fund, Frank said.

“We’re just happy as hell,” said Mike Smeltzer, executive director of the Manufacturer’s Association of South Central Pennsylvania.

Smeltzer said the retention of a big-name employer like Caterpillar can be helpful in luring more large companies to York County.

“It’s huge,” Smeltzer said. “Corporations are no different than people. Peer pressure matters.” Full Story

Outrageous Example Of Corporate Greed From Caterpillar

Published on Jul 30, 2012

“…manufacturing giant Caterpillar was seeking major concessions during contract negotiations with striking workers, even as it was making billions in profits and giving its CEO a 60 percent pay boost. The New York Times’ Steven Greenhouse added more details today, noting that the company wants to implement a six-year pay freeze and a pension freeze, at a time when it is making record profits…”

America’s Private Sector Army

Prior to the Iraq war, most people wouldn’t have heard of the private military companies (PMCs) that provide their services to the USA. Then came the the headlines, thick and fast, as the heavy involvement of PMCs such as Blackwater led to controversy. 

Excerpts, The Kernel - “The number of contractors used is staggering. In 2010 there were 94,413 contractors in Afghanistan, compared with 91,600 US troops.

MERCENARIES IN EVERYTHING BUT NAME

Most PMCs provide logistical support, but one stands out above all others: Blackwater. Described by some as a “private army”, they differ from modern day military units such as the British Army’s Brigade of Gurkhas and the French Foreign Legion, in that they are an autonomous company providing military services. Mercenaries in everything but name. Blackwater in particular stands out for their boots-on-the ground provision of “security guards” who look, smell and operate like any other combat soldier.

Blackwater, now called Academi, became known for a string of controversial incidents involving its personnel. Now that Middle Eastern occupations are winding down and court cases have been settled, Blackwater has managed to slip under the radar again. But it still exists, albeit with a new name, and is as influential as ever.

In the sixteen years of its existence, Blackwater has changed the face of modern warfare. How did they do it, what are they doing now and what does their continued existence mean for the future?

In explaining his vision for Blackwater, its founder Erik Prince famously stated:

“We are trying to do for the national security apparatus what FedEx did for the Postal Service.” 

Blackwater started out by offering training services to the military and landed a major contract to train Navy personnel following the 2000 bombing of USS Cole of the coast of Yemen.

With their reputation established, Blackwater began to hoover up government contracts as the War on Terror progressed. At first they provided security to secret CIA bases, then they became the default private security force for the raft of diplomats and State Department employees who found themselves involved in occupied Iraq. Blackwater proudly remind people that “not one State Department employee was killed while we were protecting them”. No officials may have been killed but a number of innocent Iraqis did, at the barrel of Blackwater guns.

The US military has long had a reputation for financial ineptitude when it come to hardware acquisition. It’s a reputation that has persisted with their procurement of contract services. At the height of the Iraq war, sergeants in the military were getting paid one-sixth of their counterparts from Blackwater. This problem of capitalism colliding with patriotism was so serious that Defense Secretary Robert Gates considered asking US troops to sign a non-compete clause…

…The largest incident branded on Blackwater’s reputation is what has become known as The Blackwater Baghdad shootings. On September sixteenth 2007, Blackwater military contractors shot and killed seventeen Iraqi civilians in Nisour Square, Baghdad…

“They became a symbol of what was seen as an occupying force. They are always heavily armed with machine-guns, and wear body armour and wraparound sunglasses. Usually they are beefy men with goatees, covered in tattoos. They swagger around like something out of a movie. Their presence here has been deeply damaging.”

Blackwater has become a destination of choice for ex-public servants looking for a cushy retirement, resulting in the company having even stronger ties to the centres of American power post-Iraq than pre-Iraq. The board of directors now includes Bobby Ray Inman, the former head of the National Security Agency and Jack Quinn, the former White House Counsel to President Bill Clinton. 

Lessons have learned by both the Government and private companies from their flirtation over the last couple of decades and the legacy will have repercussions on future conflicts. The Government has found a way to patch up their military personnel shortcomings with off-the-shelf and adaptable solutions: no need for the tedium of training youngsters and paying out pension plans.

By buying up experienced Army personnel, Blackwater have made themselves indispensable as a training institution for America’s elite troops. And next time the US goes gung-ho into another country? The contractors will be ready. Academi have developed and manufactured their own infantry mobility vehicle called The Grizzly APC. They were too late to the military hardware party this time around but they have all the pieces in place to take an even greater role in the USA’s next major conflict.” Full Article on The Kernel

 

 

The Lewis Powell Memo – Corporate Blueprint to Dominate Democracy

I‘d like to give a huge “Thank You” shout out to The Secular Jurist for pointing me in the direction of the Powell Memo in a comment yesterday. For all of the time I’ve put into try to dig through the corporate influence and misdeeds of The American Legislative Exchange Council, I had somehow not made the connection between ALEC and Powell. This is just another piece of a puzzle I’ve been trying to unravel for years just for my own personal amusement/interests and to gain a better understanding of how it is our country (and the world) came to be in such a “mess”…

GreenPeace (August 23, 2011) - “On August 23, 1971, Justice Lewis F. Powell, Jr., an attorney from Richmond, Virginia, drafted a confidential memorandum for the U.S. Chamber of Commercethat describes a strategy for the corporate takeover of the dominant public institutions of American society.

Powell and his friend Eugene Sydnor, then-chairman of the Chamber’s education committee, believed the Chamber had to transform itself from a passive business group into a powerful political force capable of taking on what Powell described as a major ongoing “attack on the American free enterprise system.”

An astute observer of the business community and broader social trends, Powell was a former president of the American Bar Association and a board member of tobacco giant Philip Morris and other companies. In his memo, he detailed a series of possible “avenues of action” that the Chamber and the broader business community should take in response to fierce criticism in the media, campus-based protests, and new consumer and environmental laws.

Environmental awareness and pressure on corporate polluters had reached a new peak in the months before the Powell memo was written. In January 1970, President Nixon signed the National Environmental Policy Act, which formally recognized the environment’s importance by establishing the White House Council on Environmental Quality. Massive Earth Day events took place all over the country just a few months later and by early July, Nixon signed an executive order that created the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA). Tough new amendments to the Clean Air Act followed in December 1970 and by April 1971, EPA announced the first air pollution standards. Lead paint was soon regulated for the first time, and the awareness of the impacts of pesticides and other pollutants– made famous by Rachel Carson in her 1962 book, Silent Spring – was recognized when DDT was finally banned for agricultural use in 1972.

The overall tone of Powell’s memo reflected a widespread sense of crisis among elites in the business and political communities. “No thoughtful person can question that the American economic system is under broad attack,” he suggested, adding that the attacks were not coming just from a few “extremists of the left,” but also – and most alarmingly — from “perfectly respectable elements of society,” including leading intellectuals, the media, and politicians.

To meet the challenge, business leaders would have to first recognize the severity of the crisis, and begin marshalling their resources to influence prominent institutions of public opinion and political power — especially the universities, the media and the courts. The memo emphasized the importance of education, values, and movement-building. Corporations had to reshape the political debate, organize speakers’ bureaus and keep television programs under “constant surveillance.” Most importantly, business needed to recognize that political power must be “assiduously cultivated; and that when necessary, it must be used aggressively and with determination – without embarrassment and without the reluctance which has been so characteristic of American business.”

Powell emphasized the importance of strengthening institutions like the U.S. Chamber — which represented the interests of the broader business community, and therefore key to creating a united front. While individual corporations could represent their interests more aggressively, the responsibility of conducting an enduring campaign would necessarily fall upon the Chamber and allied foundations. Since business executives had “little stomach for hard-nosed contest with their critics” and “little skill in effective intellectual and philosophical debate,” it was important to create new think tanks, legal foundations, front groups and other organizations. The ability to align such groups into a united front would only come about through “careful long-range planning and implementation, in consistency of action over an indefinite period of years, in the scale of financing available only through joint effort, and in the political power available only through united action and united organizations.”

Before he was appointed by Richard Nixon to the U.S. Supreme Court Powell circulated his call for a business crusade not only to the Chamber, but also to executives at corporations including General Motors. The memo did not become available to the public until after Powell’s confirmation to the Court, when it was leaked to Jack Anderson, a syndicated columnist and investigative reporter, who cited it as reason to doubt Powell’s legal objectivity.

Anderson’s report spread business leaders’ interest in the memo even further. Soon thereafter, the Chamber’s board of directors formed a task force of 40 business executives(from U.S. Steel, GE, ABC, GM, CBS, 3M, Phillips Petroleum, Amway and numerous other companies) to review Powell’s memo and draft a list of specific proposals to “improve understanding of business and the private enterprise system,” which the board adopted on November 8, 1973.

Historian Kim Phillips-Fein describes how “many who read the memo cited it afterward as inspiration for their political choices.” In fact, Powell’s Memo is widely credited for having helped catalyze a new business activist movement, with numerous conservative family and corporate foundations (e.g. Coors, Olin, Bradley, Scaife, Koch and others) thereafter creating and sustaining powerful new voices to help push the corporate agenda, including the Business Roundtable (1972), the American Legislative Exchange Council (ALEC – 1973), Heritage Foundation (1973), the Cato Institute (1977), the Manhattan Institute (1978), Citizens for a Sound Economy (1984 – now Americans for Prosperity), Accuracy in Academe (1985), and others.

Because it signaled the beginning of a major shift in American business culture, political power and law, the Powell memo essentially marks the beginning of the business community’s multi-decade collective takeover of the most important institutions of public opinion and democratic decision-making. At the very least, it is the first place where this broad agenda was compiled in one document.

That shift continues today, with corporate influence over policy and politics reaching unprecedented new dimensions. The decades-long drive to rethink legal doctrines and ultimately strike down the edifice of campaign finance laws – breaking radical new ground with the Roberts Court’s decision in Citizens United v. the Federal Election Commission – continues apace.

Although many new voices have emerged in the 40 years since it circulated Powell’s memo, the U.S. Chamber has expanded its leadership position within the corporate power movement, leading dozens of judicial, legislative and regulatory fights each year. Measured in terms of money spent, the Chamber is by far the most powerful lobby in Washington, DC, spending $770.6 million since 1998, over three times the amount spent by General Electric, the second-largest spender. At the same time, the Chamber has reinforced its lobbying power by becoming one of the largest conduits of election-related “independent expenditures,”spending over $32.8 million on Federal elections in 2010. The Chamber sponsors the Institute for Legal Reform, which has spearheaded the campaign for tort “reform,” making it more difficult for average people who have been injured, assaulted, or harmed to sue the responsible corporations. Along with well over a dozen legal foundations, the Chamber has also helped shape the powerful “business civil liberties” movement that has been a driving force behind the Citizens United decision and other judicial actions that have handcuffed regulators and prevented Congress from putting common-sense checks on corporate power.” Read More On GreenPeace

Journalist Faces Jail Time For Refusing To Disclose Identity Of Source

“I can’t believe an Illinois judge, or any American for that matter, would think it’s OK to imprison and bankrupt a person for doing his or her job well,” he said. “That’s something I would expect in a third-world country, not here. SPJ will not stand by passively and let a judge trample over democracy. Neither should the people of Illinois.”

Excerpts, Mint Press News – “For refusing to reveal the identify of his sources, Judge Gerald Kinney of Illinois’s Will County Circuit Court has fined editor Joseph Hosey a one-time $1,000 fine, plus an additional $300 penalty for every day he does not disclose to the court who gave him the police reports related to a double murder in Illinois earlier this year. 

Hosey is the editor of the hyperlocal news site Orland Park Patch, part of the Patch Media Network, which is owned by AOL. The $300 daily fine will be charged to Hosey for 180 days, and began Aug. 29, 2013. If Hosey does not disclose his source before the 180 days are up, he is expected to serve jail time.

According to his bio page on the Patch website, Hosey has been a reporter in the Chicago area since 1999 and covered the Drew Peterson case, which he later wrote about in his book, “Fatal Vows: The Tragic Wives of Sergeant Drew Peterson.” That book was later made into a movie for the cable network Lifetime.

Hosey has been an editor for the Orland Park Patch since 2010.

In Illinois, journalists are protected under a state media shield law, which says that a journalist has the right to protect the identity of a confidential source. However, the law has an exception: if a petitioner can show that the identity of a confidential source is relevant to the proceedings and that public interest would be “adversely affected” if the information is not disclosed, they are not longer able to claim “reporter’s privilege.”

Though freedom of speech, which includes the printed word, is protected under the First Amendment, media shield laws are supposed to go above and beyond in terms of protecting a journalist from being forced to disclose confidential information and sources.

Hosey was ordered to hand over the police reports on Aug. 30, which he used to describe the details of the Hickory Street murders that occurred in Joliet, Ill. in January. Judge Kinney said that if the identity of the source could not be determined solely by the documents, Hosey would have to disclose the identity of his source to the court…

…Reporter’s privilege

The Society of Professional Journalists, which represents 8,000 journalists nationwide, has expressed support for Hosey, saying the ruling is not just a violation on the freedoms of the press but to citizens who have a right to know what is going on with their government.

Dave Cuillier is the president of SPJ. He said the charges against Hosey are outrageous and “cannot be tolerated.”

“I can’t believe an Illinois judge, or any American for that matter, would think it’s OK to imprison and bankrupt a person for doing his or her job well,” he said. “That’s something I would expect in a third-world country, not here. SPJ will not stand by passively and let a judge trample over democracy. Neither should the people of Illinois.”

Linda Petersen, SPJ’s national FOI committee chair, agreed and said the case against Hosey is “a witch hunt to discover who leaked documents to Joey Hosey who is just doing his job as a reporter.

“That Judge Kinney feels justified under the law is appalling,” she said. “Illinois’ shield law clearly protects Joey Hosey in this situation and Kinney’s manipulative interpretation of that law is a farce.”

The Chicago Headline Club, the largest SPJ chapter in the U.S., also released a statementcondemning the contempt of court charges filed against Hosey, and have asked Kinney to withdraw his orders to Hosey.

“We are appalled, dismayed and angered by Judge Kinney’s decision,” said Fernando Diaz, president of the Chicago Headline Club. “Kinney’s actions are unwarranted as Mr. Hosey was working within the ethical framework of professional journalism.”

“The SPJ code of ethics starts with ‘seek truth and report it,’” Diaz said, “and that’s exactly what Mr. Hosey has been doing. Kinney’s action does little more than keep information from the public.”

Restricted freedoms of the press

Hosey is far from the only journalist who has been targeted recently by a government entity for refusing to share where he obtained his information. As Mint Press News previously reported, after it was discovered earlier this summer that several media organizations had been spied on, including the Associated Press and FOX News, President Obama told the Justice Department to develop guidelines to protect journalists.”

More details and full article here on Mint Press News

 

The Lion Sleeps No More

Anonymous 2013

Greetings world. We are anonymous. We are the people.

Governments of the world: take this message as your last will and testament. The game is officially over. Social media has given birth to something new. Now it’s time to set the record straight. This video is intended as that spark that gets delivered straight into the hearts and minds of the world. This video is an idea – a shared idea – so listen very carefully and make sure you are sitting down…

On the 5th of November 2013, Anonymous call for a day of global civil disobedience.

Screen-shot-2013-01-23-at-11.27.42-PM

Continue reading

Like A Phoenix: Power Beyond The Fall

So…you want a revolution, eh? Pissed off…fed up…you know bad things are going bump in the night but don’t know which way to turn for help when officers are murdering people – and pets – all over the place. Your government representatives have gone deaf and blind. Your online activity is not only not private, but can and will be used against you in court…doors are getting bashed in, your milk is no longer legal, your neighbors can vanish and be indefinitely detained & families are being terrorized by armed and masked SWAT men in the middle of the night…

It is time to do something…NOW!!

Enough is enough!! Our founding fathers would not have stood for this and neither should we!! 

The time for a revolution is at hand…!

Or is it..?

Continue reading

War Dividend: Arms Firms Ready To Cash In

“War against a foreign country only happens when the moneyed classes think they are going to profit from it.”

- George Orwell

~$~

Published on Sep 16, 2013

RT “US military forces remain in position to strike Syria, if Damascus fails to comply – with France backing up Washington’s threat. An attack would bring huge risks. But also stellar profits for US arms firms, as Lindsay France reports…”

~$~

war-is-money

~$~

“Politicians hide themselves away
They only started the war
Why should they go out to fight?
They leave that role to the poor…” 

Echoes Of Darkness

StormCloudsGathering“The powers that be shredded the constitution and took you into a series of wars that have left countless civilians dead based on this event. You owe it to your children and grand children to take another look at it…”

Potential US ConsequencesOf the Trans Pacific Partnership

I’ve not yet had time to dig into all of this information and cannot vouch for the accuracy of all of it but I thought it was worth sharing so that others can start doing their own searches and decide for themselves whether or not this latest partnership is good or bad. So far I’m leaning towards thinking this is not a good thing but I need more time and information before I make up my mind 100%. ~Reb

“The Trans Pacific Partnership (TPP) is a secret trade agreement that is nearing the end of negotiations as of Fall 2012. It has been negotiated solely between participating-nation Presidents,their chief trade advisors, and some 600 corporate advisors, who have been working together to craft this more than 25-chapter agreement: only five, it is said, of which have to do with actual trade.Despite international trade being a Constitutional right given to Congress.

Congress has not only been closed out of the negotiations process, but has been denied full access to the agreement’s text. The media and citizens at large are also denied access to the text, until several years after the agreement has passed.

Some readers will want to dig into this document in its entirety, while others may want to choose select categories of interest from the table of contents on the following page. However, I recommend taking the time to read it in full since it is written in a connect-the-dots fashion that documents these proven patterns of free trade consequences in America. In addition, each section has morsels of eye-opening information and/or statistics, which you will want to be aware of.”

Photo via Expose the TPP – USA on Facebook

This document will highlight:
• General US consequences of trade agreements: rising trade deficits, lost American jobs
•Impacts of NAFTA, the World Trade Organization and KORUS
•State and national laws and policies which impede corporate “lost potential profits” already going to global tribunals of corporation vs. offending nation under trade agreement “barriers”
•Exporting of blue and white collar American jobs: growing threats under the TPP
•Food safety: likely to be less safe under the TPP
•Environmental consequences of free trade and the TPP
•The TPP and medications: extended drug patents, less generics, higher prices
• Internet Freedom: tighter regulations than the Congressionally rejected SOPA, PIPA

READ FULL DOCUMENT HERE ON SCRIBD

War Is A Racket

War is a Racket by Smedley Butler is a famous speech denouncing the military industrial complex. This speech by two-time Congressional Medal of Honor recipient exposes war profits that benefit few at the expense of many. Throughout his distinguished career in the Marines, Smedley Darlington Butler demonstrated that true patriotism does not mean blind allegiance to government policies with which one does not agree. To Hell with war.

– Excerpt from a speech delivered in 1933, by Major General Smedley Butler, USMC.

War is just a racket. A racket is best described, I believe, as something that is not what it seems to the majority of people. Only a small inside group knows what it is about. It is conducted for the benefit of the very few at the expense of the masses.

I believe in adequate defense at the coastline and nothing else. If a nation comes over here to fight, then we’ll fight. The trouble with America is that when the dollar only earns 6 percent over here, then it gets restless and goes overseas to get 100 percent. Then the flag follows the dollar and the soldiers follow the flag…

I wouldn’t go to war again as I have done to protect some lousy investment of the bankers. There are only two things we should fight for. One is the defense of our homes and the other is the Bill of Rights. War for any other reason is simply a racket.

There isn’t a trick in the racketeering bag that the military gang is blind to. It has its “finger men” to point out enemies, its “muscle men” to destroy enemies, its “brain men” to plan war preparations, and a “Big Boss” Super-Nationalistic-Capitalism.

It may seem odd for me, a military man to adopt such a comparison. Truthfulness compels me to. I spent thirty- three years and four months in active military service as a member of this country’s most agile military force, the Marine Corps. I served in all commissioned ranks from Second Lieutenant to Major-General. And during that period, I spent most of my time being a high class muscle- man for Big Business, for Wall Street and for the Bankers. In short, I was a racketeer, a gangster for capitalism.

I suspected I was just part of a racket at the time. Now I am sure of it. Like all the members of the military profession, I never had a thought of my own until I left the service. My mental faculties remained in suspended animation while I obeyed the orders of higher-ups. This is typical with everyone in the military service.

I helped make Mexico, especially Tampico, safe for American oil interests in 1914. I helped make Haiti and Cuba a decent place for the National City Bank boys to collect revenues in. I helped in the raping of half a dozen Central American republics for the benefits of Wall Street. The record of racketeering is long. I helped purify Nicaragua for the international banking house of Brown Brothers in 1909-1912 (where have I heard that name before?). I brought light to the Dominican Republic for American sugar interests in 1916. In China I helped to see to it that Standard Oil went its way unmolested.

During those years, I had, as the boys in the back room would say, a swell racket. Looking back on it, I feel that I could have given Al Capone a few hints. The best he could do was to operate his racket in three districts. I operated on three continents…