Fifteen Years

“It Was a Crime”: 15 Years After U.S. Invasion, Iraqis Still Face Trauma, Destruction & Violence

It’s been 15 years since the American and British governments, with the assistance of their lapdog media, conned their citizens into getting behind the war crime that was the invasion of Iraq. Not coincidentally, that’s about as long a I’ve been called a “conspiracy theorist”. Today, the apologists for the media will say, as if they were victims, that they were duped, or didn’t know, or they did the best they could. A total lie. They were cheerleaders for a criminal war then, and cheerleaders for criminal wars now. And since they keep getting away with it, they’re getting more and more blatant about it.

Our memories are short.

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Which POTUS said this?

This sounds very familiar.

“All Americans, not only in the states most heavily affected but in every place in this country, are rightly disturbed by the large numbers of illegal aliens entering our country. The jobs they hold might otherwise be held by citizens or legal immigrants; the public services they use impose burdens on our taxpayers. That’s why our administration has moved aggressively to secure our borders more by hiring a record number of new border guards, by deporting twice as many criminal aliens as ever before, by cracking down on illegal hiring, by barring welfare benefits to illegal aliens.”

Anyone care to guess the POTUS who said this?

 

Continue reading “Which POTUS said this?”

Headline: “U.S. secretly tested carcinogen in Western Canada during the Cold War, researcher finds”

That the United States government conducted tests like this on their own soil, adversely affecting their own citizens, is well known. Less well known to Canadians is that our government agreed to allow them to perform tests on our own soil. No surprise to me, of course. What surprises me is there are people who still believe that this sort of thing isn’t being done now, because our governments are more “humane” today and would never perform dangerous experiments without consent. They’ve done it before and they’ll do it again and 30 years from now we’ll hear about the shit they did today, and we’ll be told, “It’s in the past, time to move on! They would never do this today!”. We never learn.

U.S. secretly tested carcinogen in Western Canada during the Cold War, researcher finds

John Pilger on Ken Burns’ “The Vietnam War”

The Killing of History

John Pilger doesn’t hold back his disdain for Ken Burns’ revisionist “The Vietnam War”, and I can see why. The very distinct possibility that the Gulf of Tonkin incident was a false-flag is apparently not discussed. The war is described as a “tragedy” that “was begun in good faith by decent people out of fateful misunderstandings, American overconfidence and Cold War misunderstandings”. These are the words of the narrator and they remind me of Adam Curtis’ defense of UK and American war criminals in “Bitter Lake”. As Pilger puts it, “[t]here was no good faith. The faith was rotten and cancerous.”

When it comes to our war propaganda, “WE” do not wage war for malevolent reasons, the “OTHERS” do. What amazes me is how anyone can believe this. Whatever the vehicle is for propaganda, Hollywood movie or PBS documentary, “[t]he revisionism never stops and the blood never dries”.

A Short History of Aspartame

The Shocking Story of How Aspartame Became Legal

I was reminded of the strange story of aspartame and Donald Rumsfeld earlier today. Turns out it’s a template for what we now call “regulatory capture”.

Aspartame was discovered accidentally by a chemist at pharmaceutical company G.D. Searle in 1965 and was eventually approved by the FDA for “restricted use in dry foods” by 1974, despite at least two studies showing aspartic acid “caused holes in the brains of infant mice”, and against the objections of at least two prominent scientists at the time. In January, 1977, grand jury proceedings are initiated against G.D. Searle “to investigate whether indictments should be filed against Searle for knowingly misrepresenting findings and ‘concealing material facts and making false statements’ in aspartame safety tests.” Incredibly, while the proceedings were taking place, the law firm defending G.D. Searle entered into employment negotiations with the U.S. attorney leading the investigation, Samuel Skinner.

Enter Donald Rumsfeld. In March 1977, with the grand jury proceedings still taking place, Rumsfeld is brought on as CEO for the company, and by July 1977 Samuel Skinner resigns as U.S. attorney to take a job with the firm representing G.D. Searle in the grand jury probe. Skinner’s resignation stalls the grand jury and by December 1977 the statute of limitations runs out and the investigation is dropped.

Aspartame was still in limbo, but by January 1981 G.D. Searle get their man Rumsfeld on the Reagan transition team, who hand picks the man he wants in charge of the FDA, Dr. Arthur Hull Hayes Jr, who then sets up a scientific panel to review aspartame safety. The panel votes 3-2 in favour of upholding the ban, but Hayes’ response is to add a sixth member to the panel, which leads to a deadlock broken by, you guessed it, Hayes. By July 1981, Hayes approves aspartame for dry foods, against the recommendations of a Public Board of Inquiry and the internal FDA team. By July 1983, the FDA approves the use of aspartame in carbonated beverages. And that’s how aspartame came to be.

By 1985 Monsanto, naturally untroubled by the now fading aspartame controversy, purchases G.D. Searle and acquires the patent for aspartame. After the Monsanto acquisition, Rumsfeld pockets a cool $12mn bonus.

Smedley Butler: War is a Racket

War is a Racket

No one knew war is a racket more than Major General Smedley Butler, the most decorated general in American history prior to WW2. This should be mandatory reading for high-school students, because the sooner you wake young people up to the racket that is war, the more likely we’ll have less of it.

” WAR is a racket. It always has been.

It is possibly the oldest, easily the most profitable, surely the most vicious. It is the only one international in scope. It is the only one in which the profits are reckoned in dollars and the losses in lives.

A racket is best described, I believe, as something that is not what it seems to the majority of the 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 very many. Out of war a few people make huge fortunes.

In the World War [I] a mere handful garnered the profits of the conflict. At least 21,000 new millionaires and billionaires were made in the United States during the World War. That many admitted their huge blood gains in their income tax returns. How many other war millionaires falsified their tax returns no one knows.

How many of these war millionaires shouldered a rifle? How many of them dug a trench? How many of them knew what it meant to go hungry in a rat-infested dug-out? How many of them spent sleepless, frightened nights, ducking shells and shrapnel and machine gun bullets? How many of them parried a bayonet thrust of an enemy? How many of them were wounded or killed in battle?

Out of war nations acquire additional territory, if they are victorious. They just take it. This newly acquired territory promptly is exploited by the few — the selfsame few who wrung dollars out of blood in the war. The general public shoulders the bill.

And what is this bill?

This bill renders a horrible accounting. Newly placed gravestones. Mangled bodies. Shattered minds. Broken hearts and homes. Economic instability. Depression and all its attendant miseries. Back-breaking taxation for generations and generations.”

And he’s just getting started.

Mort Sahl Interview from May 1970

There’s just so much in this 51 minutes I hardly know where to start. Great interview with Mort Sahl on KPFA from 1970. This Montreal-born “social satirist” and pioneer in modern stand-up comedy winds up becoming a sworn deputy on Jim Garrison’s team investigating the assassination of JFK. To really enjoy, it helps to know a little about the assassinations, but not the details. In the interview, he gives us a bird’s eye view of those three world-changing assassinations, and what the truth behind them meant for the future of the United States and the world at the time. He saw then what hardly anyone around him cared to see. And here we are now, pretty much where he thought we would be. And he’s lived to tell the tale – he’ll be 90 in May.

They talk about other things going on at the time as well – Vietnam, Nixon, “the warfare state”, CIA coups, CIA drug-running, owned journalists, poor journalists, Nazis, and liberals. He even has a huge dig at Bill Cosby: “Bill Cosby’s a fraud.”.

Love this part:

“Q: How are young people going to save the country?

A: First thing they’ve got to do is preserve their state of mind. They’ve got to be kept from being driven mad. Being driven mad is the paranoia that happened to your parents – Communism. Communism – they did that to us therefore we can burn up their village. In order to make you Nazis, which is not your heritage, they have to make you crazy first, which is what the Germans did to youth….So you’ve got to preserve your state of mind and not go nuts.”

They’ve been trying to make people crazy for a long time now. Seems to be working and getting worse, even as more and more are waking up. I guess on balance, they just have to make sure that 1/3 of the population are nuts, then make sure those crazies get their voices heard on “THE NEWS”, and then maybe another 1/3 goes crazy just listening to them. The other 1/3? Those people are sane, but they get called crazy.“