Monday, January 16, 2012


Which of the other presidential candidates has spoken so openly and, apparently, presciently, about what is occurring today? Which of the other presidential candidates has offered policy proposals to overcome these predictions?

Thank you, Jaime in TX, for providing the link. And thank you, too, for the quote:
If you want government to intervene domestically, you’re a liberal. If you want government to intervene overseas, you’re a conservative. If you want government to intervene everywhere, you’re a moderate. If you don’t want government to intervene anywhere, you’re an extremist.
I had begun to "get" the first two. I hadn't thought of the last two.

I had never thought of myself as an extremist.

Wednesday, January 11, 2012

Ron Paul an extremist?

Y'know, it's impossible for Ron Paul to win. He can't possibly do it. Never. That's why it's appropriate (totally TONGUE-IN-CHEEK!) for the media to continue to treat him like this:

Newspaper headline in September: "Poll: Romney leads New Hampshire, Huntsman in third, Perry in fourth."

Or as John Stewart so dramatically demonstrated in his excellent review of coverage to that point in the Republican race:

Actually, I get the feeling Paul may be like Tim Tebow: wholly under-appreciated, mocked, counted out before he begins. And the media's coverage certainly does make it tough for a candidate like Paul to make any progress. That's why I find his achievement yesterday ("Stunning" Second Place Victory, said one headline) all the more remarkable. He is not only fighting his political direct competitors for the office of president; he seems to have to take on the entire media.

That's why I think it is about time we finally have some skeptical commentary like this from December (start at 3:30 for the real "meat" of the argument):

Or this:

I "just" get this feeling that there are too many corporate fat-cats being bailed-out by Washington . . . and there's no other candidate besides Paul who is even willing to discuss the issues. So the corporations are willing for anyone . . . as long as it's not Paul.

And so we continue the downward spiral.

By the way, for a story from 150 years ago about corporate fat-cats sucking at the teat of big government, check out this story by Thomas DiLorenzo. It's about the government-subsidized transcontinental railroad . . . and that "other" railroad that no one has ever heard about.

For just a tiny juicy tidbit from the article:
Hill's Great Northern was . . . the "best constructed and most profitable of all the world's major railroads," as Michael P. Malone points out. The Great Northern's efficiency and profitability were legendary, whereas the government-subsidized railroads, managed by a group of political entrepreneurs who focused more on acquiring subsidies than on building sound railroads, were inefficiently built and operated. Jay Cooke was not the only one whose government-subsidized railroad ended up in bankruptcy. In fact, Hill's Great Northern was the only transcontinental railroad that never went bankrupt. . . .

Where James J. Hill would be obsessed with finding the shortest route for his railroad, [the] government-subsidized companies, knowing they were paid by the mile, "sometimes built winding, circuitous roads to collect for more mileage," as Burton Folsom recounts. Union Pacific vice president and general manager Thomas Durant "stressed speed, not workmanship," writes Folsom, which meant that he and his chief engineer, former Union Army genera1 Grenville Dodge, often used whatever kind of wood was available for railroad ties, including fragile cottonwood. This, of course, is in stark contrast to James J. Hill's insistence on using only the best-quality materials, even if they were more expensive. Durant paid so many lumberjacks to cut trees for rails that farmers were forced to use rifles to defend their land from the subsidized railroad builders; not for him was the Hill motto, "We have got to prosper with you or we have got to be poor with you."
Guess what? The Monsantos and Pfizers, not to mention Bank of Americas and Fannie Maes and Freddie Macs are just like the owners of the Union Pacific and Central Pacific railroads. They are far more concerned about using the government to keep competition away than they are to do the best truly to serve their customers. . . .

Are you ready for four more years of this kind of abuse at the hands of these people?

Monday, January 09, 2012

I didn't want to believe it

Cannabis as a broad-spectrum source of health?

Thursday, January 05, 2012

RICO and now NDAA: Are you soon to become a domestic terrorist?

You know how RICO--the so-called Racketeering Influenced and Corrupt Organizations Act was originally supposed to go after Mafia-style Big Crime organizations that do really nasty things . . . and then began to transmogrify for use against protest groups.

Mike Adams of Natural News points out that the recently-passed NDAA--National Defense Authorization Act about which I wrote a couple of times last month--is now ready for use against . . . you've got it . . . "domestic terrorist" groups like Food Not Bombs, whose purpose is to provide vegetarian buffet foods in public parks to feed the homeless, the hungry, and social protest movements like the Occupy protesters we have seen in the United States.

Adams makes an oblique reference to the famous statement by Martin Niemöller (1892-1984), the German theologian who spent seven years in Nazi concentration camps. After World War II, Niemöller said:
First they came for the Socialists, and I did not speak out --
Because I was not a Socialist.

Then they came for the Trade Unionists, and I did not speak out --
Because I was not a Trade Unionist.

Then they came for the Jews, and I did not speak out --
Because I was not a Jew.

Then they came for me -- and there was no one left to speak for me.
Adams titled his article, And then they came for the food activists.

Hey: "I'm not one of them." I don't like crowds and I don't like mobs and, at best, I'm a "socialist" only in the sense that I believe in voluntarily doing good to or for those in need. But government-enforced "socialism"? No thanks!

So I'm definitely not "one of them." But I was raised to act according to the old maxim, usually misattributed to Voltaire, that "I disapprove of what you say, but I will defend to the death your right to say it."

Here's what Adams writes based on multiple sources I have listed below this quote:
The FBI investigated a former Chicago Tribune journalist for handing out leaflets advocating animal rights. Will Potter was arrested by Chicago police and then released. Shortly after, the FBI knocked on his door. Will was threatened with being placed on the "domestic terrorist list."

More journalist than street activist, Will decided to dive into the rabbit hole of federal law enforcement suppressing environmental and animal rights activists. From that experience he wrote his book Green is the New Red: An Insider's Account of a Social Movement Under Siege. What Will discloses is disturbing.

Eco-terrorists, animal rights terrorists, and political prison

The war against terrorism already includes environmentalists and animal rights groups. Both groups occasionally engage in acts of vandalism, temporary occupation, and "illegally" releasing animals from lab experiment facilities.

But usually these activists conduct peaceful demonstrations and disseminate materials promoting their valid causes. If there is any vandalism, one could be charged for that and either fined or jailed according to the offense and the accused person's previous record.

But now, two secret prisons designed for domestic terrorists have sprung up in Indiana and Illinois. And environmental and animal rights activists have been considered domestic terrorists for years. These special domestic terrorist prisons are called Communication Management Units (CMUs).

Per prison documentation, CMUs are "self-contained" housing units for prisoners who "require increased monitoring of communication" in order to "protect the public." Current prisoners were transferred from minimal security prisons to CMUs without notice or due process.

The CMUs limit phone calls, visiting time, and mail much more than even maximum security prisons. Everything is monitored closely. Another Prison Bureau mission statement for CMUs is to keep people with "inspirational significance" from communicating with their groups or anyone in the media and public.

And now food activists are eligible for CMUs

This covers a wide spectrum of peaceful activists. Documents retrieved under the Freedom of Information Act (FIA) disclose the FBI's intent to infiltrate food activist groups and arrest food activists as domestic terrorists.

There have been raids on the Food Not Bombs activist groups. Their activity has involved creating vegetarian buffet food stands in public parks to feed the homeless, protest marches, and investigating and communicating corrupt global food distribution. That's a hot one!

Recently, public park feeding festivals were closed down forcefully. Members are often under surveillance. As early as 1989, military run classes in domestic training used the Food Not Bombs group as a case-study for one of "America's most hardcore terrorist groups".

Most of us know of other raids on raw milk distributors, family farms, private vegetable gardens and private food storage facilities. An outdoor vegetarian banquet held at someone's ranch was even disrupted by state health officials recently.

All of these cases of local law enforcement or food agency harassment eventually make their way into FBI files. But there's more -- the FBI has urged local authorities to harass and provide information. A Food Not Bombs site reports that private security agents from large corporations, like Monsanto, are also involved with food activist surveillance and monitoring.

The "War on Terror" is the cover for all this intimidation of citizens actively concerned about the future of food quality and food freedom. A compliant media and dumbed down population allows it.
Adams lists, as sources for his article,
Michael Kindt's Open Up and Say "Ahh",' America's Dirty Little Secret, Domestic Surveillance, Potter's What is the “Green Scare”?, and a two and a half-year-old article by Potter titled Secretive U.S. Prison Units Used to House Muslim, Animal Rights and Environmental Activists.

It disturbs me to think that more than a generation of Americans have been encouraged to read George Orwell's dystopian novel 1984, but when the real Big Brother is upon us, we are, in general, as supine as the citizens of Orwell's country.

How sad!

Monday, January 02, 2012

Bibles in China

I thought I had posted this last February. Apparently not. I think it is worth considering.

In Hong Kong, we experienced what it’s like to be in the most crowded place on earth. While there, we met with a man who works to send Bibles into China. Sarita and I were not sure why his work was necessary. After all, the government is cooperating with the International Bible Societies in its Amity Press Bible printing effort. Our contact’s response was most enlightening.

In keeping with the “cosmetic culture” idea to which we had been introduced by a mission leader in Bangkok two weeks earlier (“Cosmetic culture”: the most important thing is how things look on the outside; not how they are on the inside), he noted several things:
  • Amity Press boasts of printing and distributing inside China between 40 and 50 million Bibles in its first 20 years of production (through 2006). (You can see and hear these numbers on an Amity YouTube video posted by the Bible Society of New South Wales, Australia, who are heavily involved in sponsoring the Press.)
  • If you look at the Amity page I referenced above, you'll see even higher numbers.
  • Beyond production, as Peter Dean, Assistant to the General Manager of Amity notes in the YouTube video (beginning at about 4:54), there are 70 main distribution points for these Bibles, and vans take the Bibles out from there.
All of these numbers and figures are real. Our contact would not quibble with them. HOWEVER, he said,
  • You've got to recognize that there are between 100 and 150 million Chinese believers in China! Even with all the production since 1986, there may have been one Bible printed for every two believers.
  • Notice that the numbers Amity quotes are from the beginning of production. How many well-used Bibles still exist twenty years after they were printed? Especially when they are used and stored in rough conditions—without air conditioning and surrounded by the dirt, insects and rodents common to rural environments in China?
  • China’s land mass is equivalent to the United States (including Alaska and Hawaii) minus Minnesota. Imagine that you could acquire a Bible only by traveling from wherever you are—and you probably don't own a car and don't own a motorcycle!—and you have to go to the distribution point closest to you—a hundred, and possibly several hundred miles away from where you live. Moreover, when you get there, you discover that the store happens to be out of stock at the moment, or, while your friends and you all decided to go in together to buy a bunch of Bibles at one time, the distribution point will permit you to pick up only 10 Bibles. –Can we call it what it is? It’s a major inconvenience at least, and a major expense in time and money.
In sum, he said, as wonderful as the Amity Press efforts are, they are inadequate to meet the needs of the church in China.