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Are You Ready for 2012?
By R.C. Murray
January 21, 2012
“Knowing this first, that there shall come in the last days scoffers, walking after their own lusts, And saying, Where is the promise of his coming? ...” -2 Peter 3:3-4a
It’s a little too late, but Christopher Hutchens believes in God now. The devout atheist probably thought he was prepared to step into an eternity of oblivion. Hutchens wasn’t a good Boy Scout either. He wasn’t prepared.
A lot of folks adhering to foolish philosophies and dumb doctrines are probably surprised when they leave this world and suddenly find themselves unprepared for an eternity of flames and darkness. But then, most folks aren’t prepared to face the New Year, much less eternity.
I suspect 2012 may bring a lot of changes some folks never hoped for. And a lot of folks will go into eternity; some will go gladly but most not so much. Are you ready for 2012?
Yeah, I know as I write this I’ll get hate mail for saying it, particularly from one fellah, who’s obsessed with correcting my views and those of other NWVs writers. If he could, he’d shut down this website and have each of us arrested (if not beheaded) by Homeland Security and held by the military through its expanded role under the Patriot Act.
I don’t expect to run into Mr. Hutchens or my number one critic in the next life, but I wonder if they’ll discuss the futility of denying God. At least they won’t be able to say I didn’t try to warn them. They also won’t have me around to say “I told you so.”
To the dismay of my critic and other God-hating liberals who would silence all opposing viewpoints, the 1st of Amendment guarantees conservatives the same unalienable rights liberals assume belong to them only.
They can call it “hate speech” if they want, but the U.S. Constitution guarantees me the right to say out loud what I think or believe via freedom of speech and freedom of religion – even if it hurts their feelings. The Hate Crimes Protection Act should be challenged in the Supreme Court, but I’m not holding my breath for that to happen.
I’ve now written dozens of articles and a book (actually two) warning Americans that their public schools are part of one system controlled by federal dollars, and despite how they think their kids’ school might be, I’ve warned Christian parents especially to get their kids out The System – put them in a Christian school or home school them.
I don’t attempt to persuade scorners, scoffers or fools, just those simple, everyday moral Americans who sometimes lose focus because they’ve fallen among the thorns and find their lives and their faith choked by the cares of this world.
My critics never offer any substance to counter the mountain of evidence presented in my book(s), just vulgar attacks on me for daring to “force” my views on others. Force?
For me to force my views on public school supporters, I’d have to have the authority to shut down the unconstitutional U.S. Department of Education and stop all federal funds and interference in education, which has become less a process of educating and more a program of indoctrination.
On the contrary, people like me are the ones forced to accept compulsory public schooling, a system in which parents are required by law to hand over their children to the government whose humanists-socialists work to undermine the moral values they’ve tried to instill in their kids at home and church.
Many of us refuse to hand over our kids to the government and have opted to home school them or place them in a Christian school, but we’re forced nonetheless to support The System with our taxes. Meanwhile, The System itself exercises other options to gain access to our kids through its allies in the anti-Christian news media and social media, the perverted entertainment industry and Laodicean churches led by Balaamite preachers.
One lady questioned my last article regarding the upcoming election, in which I noted that no matter who wins the presidential election, this country is going to die, soon.
“No, ma’am. I’m not saying we’re not to bother voting in November’s election – if this country can survive until November,” I told her. “A wise man (Karl Priest, author of Protestor Voices: The 1974 Textbook Tea Party) reminded me once that in recent elections, he felt like he was forced to choose between pure crap and vomit.”
I told her I will probably hold my nose and vote for the candidate that stinks the least, IF the economy hasn’t already collapsed or His Arrogance hasn’t already seized complete control of everything and cancelled the façade of mock elections.
It is true that each of the GOP candidates is more conservative than Obama. But the late Kim Jong-il was more conservative than Boy Wonder.
Although I’m an Independent-Constitution Party voter, I don’t like the idea of Iowa or New Hampshire or even South Carolina deciding who the GOP nominee should be. Even Obama knows there are 54 other states, right?
And I hate the pathetic whining of the news media, especially FOX News, who cry about other GOP candidates attacking Romney. Huntsman is right; the establishment wants Romney as the GOP nominee.
The unelected elitists who really control this country are manipulating the ignorant masses as they have for 150 years, forcing upon voters a choice that’s no real choice at all, unless you think crap is preferable to vomit.
They know a lot of conservative, Tea Party Americans will not be enthusiastic about voting for Romney and will likely stay home, giving Antiochus another four years to complete his reign of terror. That’s why I suggested two years ago that Tea Party conservatives form their own third party, but they let neo-cons and radical libertarians blur their vision and ultimately take over the movement.
If by chance Romney wins, the elitists still get what they want – another puppet liberal in the Whitehouse. It’s a win-win situation for them, and as I said in my last article, evidence that it doesn’t really matter who wins the next election. America loses.
I’ve warned readers not to take Prole Nation literally, but some do anyway. They write me asking me if I really believe the world will end this year or if our Lord is returning this year. Unlike Legally STUPiD, which is a mountain of facts about public schools and the state of academics in this country, my novel is just that a novel – albeit one that alludes to a truckload of facts revealing the signs of the times.
I really don’t know if the world is going to end this year although I do suspect this country will collapse soon, very soon. I especially don’t know if my Lord Jesus is returning for his church on December 21st or September 16th or any other date in 2012.
For all I know, he could return before I finish writing this article, which is why I’ve advised folks to prepare themselves spiritually first, before they concerned themselves with physical or financial security.
That doesn’t mean I intend to sit back and watch the eastern sky, doing nothing to safeguard my family just in case my country falls before my Lord comes for me. I’m a good scout, and I will be prepared for the worst case scenario.
Be certain of this one thing though. As surely as Jesus came the first time – leaving his home in heaven to be born of a virgin, living a sinless life then dying on the cross for our sins and rising from the grave so those of us trusting in him (not our works, church membership or baptism) can live forever – he is coming again! And soon, very soon.
My critic and others often accuse me of using my faith as a weapon of fear, telling those who disagree with me they’re going to hell for “being different.” Unlike today’s phony politicians or TV preachers, what I warn folks about is not my opinion.
God is real!!! Jesus is God’s son and my Savior. God the Holy Spirit guides, instructs and comforts my spirit, and he has taught me that the Bible is the Word of God, that the words of the Bible are God’s words. That is why I’m skeptical of all modern bible translations, which are all based on fragments of a few 4th century New Testament manuscripts from Alexandria, Egypt – which was the center of Gnosticism.
These Alexandrian texts only appear to be older because they’ve barely been touched; whereas the truly older manuscripts have had to be copied and recopied again and again because they were the only ones trusted and used by early believers, even believers in Rome. Until recently, even the Catholic Bibles barely used those corrupt Alexandrian texts, even though the Catholic Church possessed the only copies of these manuscripts.
With the Bible as my standard then, let me say that I don’t write warnings to homosexuals and abortionists because I hate them. I’m trying to warn them via John 3:16-18 while at the same time warn the simple-minded via Proverbs 1:22 to wake up to what perverts and murderers are doing to this country.
For those who don’t know it, the Bible does not say homosexuals are going to hell because of their unnatural attraction to those of their own sex (which is sort of like narcissism if you think about it).
They’re going to hell because they don’t know the Christ of the Bible – the Creator of the universe who made them male and female for a reason. They’re going to hell because they haven’t been saved, and they haven’t been saved because they refuse to confess their sin and ask Christ to forgive them!
The Bible does not say abortionists are going to hell for murdering unborn babies. They’re going to hell because they don’t know and don’t want to know the love of Jesus, who gave his life so those of us who turn from our own way toward him, confess our sins and believe in him can be forgiven of the worst of sins, including abortion (shedding innocent blood) and sodomy (what the Bible calls abominations unto the Lord).
So, yes, Joel Osteen. The Bible does “grade” some sins as worse than others. Chief among the big sins is pride, something TV preachers and certain presidents know all about.
I won’t lie to homosexuals and lesbians or abortionists. Sure, a Christian can commit these awful sins and be forgiven, but no one can deny that a sin is sin and expect God’s forgiveness. Only a remorseful, contrite heart can be forgiven. Perverted and murderous souls will be judged. Anyone preaching otherwise is dragging souls into hell with him!
Homosexuals and lesbians as well as abortionists and other hell-bound liberals have the unalienable right to ignore my warning, but they do not have the extra-constitutional right to shut me up!
Last year I warned against sodomites being turned loose in the military. As I said in that article, the good order and discipline of the military will be adversely affected by this social experimentation. Still, some so-called conservatives like Ron Paul voted to destroy the only truly successful federal organization in history, the U.S. military.
Now sodomites and their lawyers are already demanding military benefits for their same-sex partners, and the expense of this litigation or concession to provide these benefits will compete for funds otherwise dedicated to defense spending.
The military is also being pressured to provide homosexual chaplains. Unlike the provision for chaplains of different faiths, if a homosexual or lesbian chaplain is assigned to a unit as its “Christian” chaplain, the concerns of Christian soldiers, sailors, airmen and Marines won’t matter regarding a spiritual advisor whose misorientation is an abomination to God.
In the short run, Christian service men and women will be denied spiritual representation and counseling because they’ll be told to accept the sodomite chaplains or have no chaplain at all.
In the long run, our humanist government will eventually force Christianity from the military.
Those who are wondering if our troops would really fire on or round up American citizens for delivery to internment camps need not ask that question anymore. When only a few Christians are serving in the military, do you really expect our military to have a Christian conscience?
Now think back to the question I asked near the beginning of this article. Are you ready for 2012?
Do you recall the unbelievable bad weather and natural catastrophes of 2011? It started with horrendous snow storms in the northwest, northeast and Midwest, which were followed by a spring thaw that brought floods and the worst tornado season on record. There were a mess of hurricanes too! One hurricane found its way to the northeast, just like the one depicted in Chapter 3 of Prole Nation.
And earthquakes! Did you know there were over 2,400 earthquakes around the world last year that were greater than 6.0? Areas that missed the snows, floods, tornados, hurricanes and earthquakes had wild fires. Do you really think 2012 will be a better?
I repeat that I don’t know if the Lord will come this year. But those who doubt the promise of his coming should read or re-read Matthew 24, Luke 21, 1 Corinthians 15: 52, 1 Thessalonians 4:13-18, 1 Thessalonians 5:2-10, 1 Peter 3:10 and Revelation 4:1-2. He is coming! That’s why we must be spiritually prepared for his imminent return.
If he does not come this year, however, we must be prepared for the eventual downfall of this country, which could be this year or shortly thereafter.
Have you ever wondered why zombie movies are so popular? I believe subconsciously most folks realize that their fellow Americans are devouring their substance. These 49 percenters (who think they’re the 99 percenters) won’t react nicely to the news their free money has been cut off with the total economic collapse of the country, if not the world.
Just like ticks and other parasites that suck the life out of their host, they’ll look for new prey among whoever is left of what used to be this country. For this reason, I think the Mormon concept of hoarding a 3-month supply of food is impractical, if only because it’s not easily transportable. You better be prepared to leave your home in a really big hurry.
Survivalists say after three or four days without food or water, most people will indeed act like zombies. When the Occupy Wall Street Zombies lose their international support, they’ll do whatever it takes to get food, and they certainly won’t hesitate to murder, possibly even resort to cannibalism when manufactured food supplies are depleted.
So, yes, to answer another fellah’s question to me, if you don’t have one, get a gun (or four) and lots and lots of ammo.
I recommend at least four weapons to every family – a high powered rifle for long distance self-defense and big game animals; a small caliber rifle for small game and varmints; a shotgun for close-quarters self-defense and big game animals; and a large caliber handgun for emergencies.
If you can afford it, you may want a semi-automatic weapon like an assault rifle. But do arm yourself. And do it now before Soros buys up all the firearms and ammunition manufacturers.
If you live in an urban area, I highly recommend a getaway plan to head for the hills, woods or swamps. Do you like wild game? You better learn to like venison, wild hogs, squirrels, rabbits, quail, dove and scores of other critters.
Camping gear is a must. Hone up on your hunting, fishing and tracking skills too. Ditto for marksmanship and common sense survival training. Get a book or two on outdoor living, to include one that helps you identify edible wild plants in your area or the wilderness region you expect to run to when the stuff hits the fan.
I suggest you form a pact with friends and family to make camp in the same area, to share resources and defend each other from attacks from outsiders. Make full use of expertise among you, including not only the former Special Operations types with their weaponry and survival training but also paramedics, carpenters, masons, butchers, mechanics, farmers, ranchers and plain old country boys who are used to living off the land.
Don’t panic. But get started and be prepared for whatever happens this year. And pray. Pray the Lord Jesus will come before we have to watch our country implode, guard our families from our zombie neighbors and resort to living like savages in some post-apocalyptic, sci-fi movie.
RC Murray is a disabled veteran and former public school teacher. He left a good job as a technical writer for a satellite manufacturer in order to teach high school English, only to be told he could not expect, much less require his students to read their literature assignments. After four years of fighting The System and having a stroke then a mini-stroke, Murray decided he was safer in the airborne infantry. He left the classroom and went back to technical writing. Murray has dedicated the rest of his life to exhorting parents about what’s really going on in their local public school and the invisible government that controls every aspect of our lives.
RC Murray is the author of three books, Golden Knights: History of the U.S. Army Parachute Team, Legally STUPiD: Why Johnny doesn’t have to read and his first novel, Prole Nation, which was re-released December 2010.
NaturalNews declares 2012 the year of consciousness
Tuesday, January 03, 2012
(NaturalNews) In Chinese culture, every year has an animal mascot. It's the "year of the monkey," for example, or the year of the rooster. For NaturalNews, 2012 is the year of consciousness (or conscious awakening, in a sense).
Does this mean we're going to abandon the mundane daily news of planet earth and float off into la-la land where we start chanting mantras and worshipping self-proclaimed enlightened gurus? Hardly. In fact, in 2012 I want to talk with you about what I call grounded consciousness. Or "holistic consciousness."
And why? Because it is the lack of consciousness that's behind every corporate crime, government conspiracy, political corruption, Big Pharma scheme and environmental crime that takes place on our planet. Those who lack consciousness engage in "you versus me" crimes of selfishness -- stealing, exploiting, destroying, deceiving -- yet such behaviors come from a place of ignorance about consciousness and the universe around us.
Let me make this really practical and easy to understand by invoking characters from popular culture:
Yoda taught Luke Skywalker that all things are connected. "The Force," as he explained it, flowed through all living things and bound them together in a kind of mystical universal energy. George Lucas was right on the mark when creating this fictional character, because "The Force" really does exist, and it's made of consciousness.
It is a sense of not just self awareness but of connectedness with other living things. The truly conscious person is not merely "awakened" about their own existence, but is fully aware and even spiritually attuned to the reality that we are not really separate from other living things around us.
Sure, we have our own individual ideas, egos, memories and actions. So we are still individuated (which is a good thing), otherwise we wouldn't even be able to talk using the word "I" (which some gurus say is an illusion anyway). But technically, when we talk about "I" we should really be talking about "we" because everything that one person does is reflected throughout the other conscious creatures and beings on our planet, so that even seemingly personal, individuated actions inevitably become "we" results.
This isn't some fleety, high-minded blabbery. It's real. It's practical. Allow me to give you an example:
Suppose a selfish, low-consciousness corporate CEO says, "I'm going to dump this toxic waste into the river because that saves ME money, and it makes ME more profits." So he dumps the waste into the river.
Downstream, a billion living creatures start to become damaged by the toxic waste: The fish, frogs, turtles, trees, plants and perhaps even cities full of people who use the river as their water supply. This, in turn, creates "a disturbance in the Force," as Obiwan described it in Star Wars. The disturbance spreads sickness, disease and dysfunction. That dysfunction inevitably makes its way back to that same corporate CEO -- perhaps the mutated offspring of some woman who drank the polluted water grows up and becomes a violent criminal who car-jacks the CEOs granddaughter and murders her in the process. While the CEO will decry "how terribly violent our world has become," he will disavow the truth that he poisoned the world and made it more destructive.
The violence that happened to his daughter was the inevitable result of his own acts of violence unleashed upon the world through toxic chemicals.
Even individuated, "we" still share a common thread
From the point of view of universal consciousness, there is no "I" -- there is only "we." And WE are affected by everything that each one of us does. If you take pharmaceuticals, you are contributing to the destruction of the planet because those chemical medications pass through your body and get flushed down the toilet where they chemically pollute the planet. Someone who says, "I need these antidepressants so I take them" is really saying "screw the planet, I am willing to poison the world in order to try to mask my own symptoms of depression with a toxic chemical."
So, you see, the corporate CEO who pollutes the planet is not much different from the 40-year-old housewife who feels depressed and pops pharmaceuticals throughout the day. Both are operating out of an illusory sense of what I call spiritual isolationism -- the false belief that we are disconnected from our world (and from each other) and that we can do whatever we wish as long as it helps us in the short term, regardless of what it does to other living, conscious beings in the long term.
This is the stunted point of view from which all deception is based -- all wars, GMO contamination, government conspiracies and corporate poisoning of the people is conducted from this place of spiritual isolationism.
Spiritual integration, in contrast, is what you might call the process by which a person comes to a sense of self awareness about the relationships between all living things. "Awakening" is integration. It's also the path of the Jedi, to use the Star Wars metaphor again, because it relies on using the Force as an ally in the protection of life.
The spiritual (Jedi) farmer
A woman who grows a garden is a spiritual farmer in that she gives new life to seeds. When a plant creates a seed, at first that seed is just a biological machine held in stasis, awaiting the right moment to sprout. When a seed sprouts, consciousness enters the plant in the same way that a soul enters the developing fetus right after the moment of fertilization.
Both a human fetus and a garden seedling are conscious beings with a sense of awareness, a (limited) sense of self, a functioning nervous system and increasingly complex awareness of its immediate environment.
The idea that plants have consciousness has been taught throughout many early human civilizations, of course. The American Indians believed this, as did the Inca. Indians believed the desert Saguaro cacti were sacred beings, watchers over the land. And when you're in the presence of these amazing beings, you can't help but agree with them.
Trees have nervous systems. Weeds in your back yard engage in social networking through the chemical transmission of messages about external threats. A blade of grass may not have the physical brain of a human being, but it has what I call "a sliver of consciousness." That doesn't mean I feel guilty mowing the lawn, but it does mean I carefully consider my actions when altering any natural landscape, removing trees, planting trees, and tending the garden.
As humans, we are especially gifted with mobility that allows us to be caretakers for other forms of conscious life, including both plants and animals. We have the arms and legs that trees don't (except in Lord of the Rings, I suppose). So we can move around, meaning we can create life (plant seeds), or we can destroy life (GMOs).
My point in all this is that the destruction of life always comes from a place of spiritual ignorance. A person who could callously and mindlessly destroy life (or poison the planet with GMOs, for example) is a person operating from a total lack of understanding about the consciousness that ties us all together. When Israelis say they want to kill Palestinians (or vice-versa), this is done from a place of giving in to the "dark side" of the Force -- the seductive, destructive side, which seems powerful at first but is actually a sign of spiritual weakness.
To harm another human being, as the Buddhists say, is to harm yourself. Why is that true? Because underneath the individuation and the ego, there flows a current of connected consciousness. It flows like a river through all living systems. To destroy life is to disrupt the flow of that river -- an act that inevitably darkens your own reality as well. There is no act of violence that is undertaken in isolation. All acts of both violence and compassion are reflected (and even magnified) throughout the fabric of reality. This idea is echoed across all world religions, including Christianity.
Police state fear is only possible from a place of low consciousness
An important point to understand in all this is that no society has yet achieved the recognition of consciousness that exists throughout all living systems. Our human societies remain in their infantile stage, operating from a place of individuated ego, and lacking the deeper understanding of connectedness that becomes obvious when the true nature of consciousness is firmly grasped.
War is the ultimate expression of disconnectedness. When one nation decides to murder the people of another nation, this is an act of extreme ignorance tempered by anger and wrapped in illusion.
Police states -- like the one into which the USA is now descending -- are the day-to-day expression of disconnectedness and ego. Think about the whole message of the terror-driven police state: YOU might be a terrorist. So I, the TSA agent or the federal law enforcement agent, must destroy you before you can destroy me. This is the philosophical foundation of Darth Vader.
So rather than working on ways to stop creating enemies -- or ways to nurture peace, liberty and prosperity -- the police state government is intent on isolating and separating people, creating division and fear that drives people apart. Whereas peace is achieved through the integration of cultures (i.e. western white people going to visit the mosques of Islam, to understand their culture better), terrorism is achieved through the spreading of suspicion and paranoia that drives people away from each other in fear while concentrating power into the hands of the "Dark Lords" (evil tyrants like Janet Napolitano, who only lacks a black cape and a loud respirator).
This is the whole point of the "If you see something, say something" campaign that depict white people, black people, and brown people as possible terror suspects to be treated with total paranoia. The government, you see, is in the business of lowering consciousness and creating division instead of peace. Peace pulls power away from governments and puts it into the hands of the People. War and fear, on the other hand, keeps power concentrate in the hands of government.
Love and compassion, on the other hand, are the vibes of raising consciousness and creating mutual respect. Governments do not teach love and compassion because such concepts are self destructive to governments.
The way out of terrorism, war and government tyranny
All this makes the pathway out of terrorism, war and fear rather obvious. You cannot "fight" tyranny and win with force. Tyranny thrives on the death, the destruction and the fear that goes with that application of force. Tyranny can truly only be conquered by awakening people to the greater truths about who they are, how they are connected, and how they all experience holographic fragments of the same stream of consciousness that flows through all living things.
The way to stop war, in other words, is to teach those who commit war so that they realize they have been operating under the illusion of false individuation. A cat might initially be scared by its own shadow on the wall -- and it might attack that shadow -- but once it realizes the shadow is simply an expression of itself, it recognizes the foolishness of fighting its own shadow, and it calmly walks away.
On our planet today, when one nation commits murder (war) against another nation, it is fighting its own shadow, and the solution to such shadow fighting is not to "build bigger bombs," but to raise awareness of the situation so that those involved both realize the silliness of it all and decide to walk away, embarrassed of how childish their actions now seem.
The end of government deception, corporate conspiracies, never-ending war, mass murder, Big Pharma's poisoning of the world, and even day-to-day muggings is found not simply in physical security, but in conscious awakening.
Does this mean you should stop thinking about self defense preparedness and start meditating away all your problems? Absolutely not: Until all the other people are also spiritually awakened, you must take prudent, practical measures to protect yourself and your family in the physical world. But as you do so, strive to teach and exemplify an "awakened" course of action that avoids violence and encourages people to connect with the deeper, higher truths of who they really are (and how they're connected to everything else).
Carry a stick, in other words, but use it to support your neighbor rather than strike them down.
About the author: Mike Adams is an award-winning journalist and holistic nutritionist with a passion for sharing empowering information to help improve personal and planetary health He has authored more than 1,800 articles and dozens of reports, guides and interviews on natural health topics, impacting the lives of millions of readers around the world who are experiencing phenomenal health benefits from reading his articles. Adams is a trusted, independent journalist who receives no money or promotional fees whatsoever to write about other companies' products. In 2010, Adams created NaturalNews.TV, a natural living video sharing site featuring thousands of user videos on foods, fitness, green living and more. He also launched an online retailer of environmentally-friendly products (BetterLifeGoods.com) and uses a portion of its profits to help fund non-profit endeavors. He's also the founder of a well known HTML email software company whose 'Email Marketing Director' software currently runs the NaturalNews subscription database. Adams volunteers his time to serve as the executive director of the Consumer Wellness Center, a 501(c)3 non-profit organization, and regularly pursues cycling, nature photography, Capoeira and Pilates. Known by his callsign, the 'Health Ranger,' Adams posts his missions statements, health statistics and health photos at www.HealthRanger.org*******
My Top Ten Wish List for America in 2012
By Frosty Wooldridge
January 2, 2012
At the dawning of 2012, Americans made resolutions and wish lists for themselves and their families. Americans plan to lose weight, obtain a job, bring a child into the world, save an animal, volunteer for the environment and dozens of other resolutions to make this a better world.
We Americans make plans by joining organizations, forming groups and collectively working toward bettering our own lives and communities.
In many ways, “The Doctors,” “The Biggest Losers,” “Dr. Oz,” “The Nature Conservancy,” “The Center for Biological Diversity,” “American Cancer Society,” “www.EvolvingWisdom.com” and hundreds of people and organizations attempt to make our world better for today and into the future.
It’s about interconnectivity, synchronicities and the common good. It’s about caring what happens to our civilization. It’s about caring for the future and our children. It’s about the 7th generation to come. As we walk across the land today and our treatment of that land, we walk on the faces of future children yet to be born.
It’s about moving away from “what can I gain and how rich can I become and how much can I screw the taxpayers” to “what can I do to make America better.”
It’s time our Congress, that possesses all the power in the world, to make for a better America and 535 members need to get their collective heads out of their rear ends and start working together to bring jobs to America, work for the environment, enforce our laws, work for American citizens and our betterment in the world. We need a president that cares about our country and not side with other countries as Obama has done. We need a president that takes care of our needs, homes, jobs, education and futures—instead of rebuilding other countries. Invest in our infrastructure, schools, medical facilities and environment.
Why does this Congress continue insourcing, outsourcing and offshoring millions of jobs when we suffer 15 million unemployed and 46 million Americans subsisting on food stamps? Why does this Congress continue pumping 100,000 legal green card holding immigrants into this country every 30 days when we haven’t employed our own citizens? Why does this Congress allow a $700 billion annual trade deficit when we need to bring manufacturing jobs back to America? Why continue two wars that mean and have done absolutely nothing to protect or give any form of security to America and cost us over $1 trillion along with the blood of our children?
Do any of those questions make sense? Do the members of Congress make sense? The answer: citizens give 535 congressional critters a nine percent approval rating. You cannot help but wonder what that nine percent uses for brains. Obama languishes at 46 percent approval. They fact is: both Congress and Obama fail abysmally. But notice most of them are filthy rich and secure.
Does this wish list for America make sense? If so, send it to your senators and house reps.
1. Get out of Afghanistan and Iraq completely. It’s killing our finest young men and women, and slaughtering our financial wellbeing at $12 billion monthly. The long term costs grow more appalling by the day. According to BATR writer, Dan Froomkin, “December 30, 2011 "Information Clearing House" - Reports about the end of the war in Iraq routinely describe the toll on the U.S. military: 4,487 dead, and 32,226 wounded. But the wounded figure wildly understates the number of American service members who have come back from Iraq less than whole. The true number of military personnel injured over the course of our nine-year-long fiasco in Iraq is in the hundreds of thousands—maybe even more than a half million—if you take into account all the men and women who returned from their deployments with traumatic brain injuries, post traumatic stress, depression, hearing loss, breathing disorders, diseases and other long term health problems.”
2. We need to change “free” trade to “fair” trade. That means we buy $1 billion from the Chinese, Indians, Mexico and other countries—and they buy $1 billion worth of goods from us. It will balance our trade to equity and give our citizens jobs at living wages.
3. We need to stop insourcing, offshoring and outsourcing American jobs in order to employ our 15 million unemployed American workers from all arenas. Our Congress must stop allowing H-1b, H-2b, L-1 and other work visas that take jobs from Americans. It’s sickening as to the fraud of it now going on within our own corporations that use America as a “selling” base, but displace American workers out of jobs—for obscene profits.
4. We must move beyond “comprehensive immigration reform” to a total moratorium on all immigration. If we continue at our current importation of third world citizens with their line of desperate individuals that grows by 80 million annually, we will add 100 million people within the next 23 years. We’re already 12 to 15 million into that number. We cannot sustain another 100 million Americans at the current level of carbon footprint, water footprint, ecological footprint, resource usage and energy consumption. I defy anyone to argue with my logic and the facts. We cannot EVER hope to continue the American Dream or lifestyle if we allow ourselves to become massively overpopulated. Our entire civilization hangs in the balance. We must stabilize our population with the “carrying capacity” of our finite continent.
“Most Western elites continue urging the wealthy West not to stem the migrant tide [that adds 80 million net gain annually to the planet], but to absorb our global brothers and sisters until their horrid ordeal has been endured and shared by all—ten billion humans packed onto an ecologically devastated planet.” Dr. Otis Graham, Unguarded Gates
5. We must engage every science and technology to promote alternative energy at every level as quickly as possible. As our oil and natural gas energy depletes, and imported supplies diminish, we will not be able to operate and feed this 315 million-sized country.
“As we go from this happy hydrocarbon bubble we have reached now to a renewable energy resource economy, which we do this century, will the “civil” part of civilization survive? As we both know there is no way that alternative energy sources can supply the amount of per capita energy we enjoy now, much less for the 9 billion expected by 2050. And energy is what keeps this game going. We are involved in a Faustian bargain—selling our economic souls for the luxurious life of the moment, but sooner or later the price has to be paid.” Walter Youngquist, energy
6. We must engage a massive conservation and clean water program to save our ground water from continuing contamination and ultimately, not enough water for our citizens, animals and irrigation for our crops.
7. We must move from unlimited capitalistic growth that consumes our natural world and devastates millions of other species—and move toward “Steady State Economics” whereby we produce and consume within the boundaries of our carrying capacity. (Source: www.SteadyStatet.org)
8. We must turn our financial resources to educate our very illiterate and marginal intellectual young adult citizenry. We suffer dropout rates of 50 to 76 percent across the USA. We cannot and will not maintain a viable civilization with so many ignorant, dumb, illiterate and useless citizens that live on welfare.
9. We need to codify and institute the English language as the only language of our civilization in order to maintain our identity, our culture and our country. No more alternative language on TV or radio stations. No more documents in any other language other than English. Repeal Executive Order 12166 by former President Clinton. It is destructive and costly to our country. And, no more hyphenated Americans. If you are a citizen of America, you are an American, period.
10. We Americans, or what’s left of us, must participate in our constitutional republic or we’re in the process of losing it.
Fellow Americans, we are in serious and deep trouble today. I am willing to bet that if we fail to engage this 10 point wish list, as well as another 20-30 items you could name, our country will continue its decline into economic poverty, loss of freedom and personal rights, environmental destruction, loss of quality of life, severe drop in standard of living and linguistic and cultural chaos. It’s already well on its way. If we continue on this current path, given another 10 to 20 years tops, I doubt we will enjoy a country—but instead, a polyglot of poverty that mirrors much of the third world today. It’s our choice and I am not optimistic given our track record, apathy and corporate greed for the past 20 years.
Listen to Frosty Wooldridge on Wednesdays as he interviews top national leaders on his radio show "Connecting the Dots" at www.themicroeffect.com at 6:00 PM Mountain Time. Adjust tuning in to your time zone.
© 2012 Frosty Wooldridge - All Rights Reserved
Frosty Wooldridge possesses a unique view of the world, cultures and families in that he has bicycled around the globe 100,000 miles, on six continents and six times across the United States in the past 30 years. His published books include: "HANDBOOK FOR TOURING BICYCLISTS"; “STRIKE THREE! TAKE YOUR BASE”; “IMMIGRATION’S UNARMED INVASION: DEADLY CONSEQUENCES”; “MOTORCYCLE ADVENTURE TO ALASKA: INTO THE WIND—A TEEN NOVEL”; “BICYCLING AROUND THE WORLD: TIRE TRACKS FOR YOUR IMAGINATION”; “AN EXTREME ENCOUNTER: ANTARCTICA.” His next book: “TILTING THE STATUE OF LIBERTY INTO A SWAMP.” He lives in Denver, Colorado.
His latest book. ‘IMMIGRATION’S UNARMED INVASION—DEADLY CONSEQUENCES.’
2012: The Make or Break for America
by Beverly Eakman
January 2, 2012
First, the “it” girl. Followed in frenzied succession by a series of “it” hairdos, “it” fashions, songs, foods, even exercise regimens. Now comes the “it” year. The instant when everything changes.
My first up-close-and-personal experience with the “it” phenomenon occurred while sitting with a neighbor in a café over lunch the week before Christmas. Though this neighbor was never a close friend, given our wildly divergent political views, in America a long-time acquaintance can still be called a pal, of sorts, if not necessarily a confidante.
Then an odd thing happened—as if 2011 couldn’t get more bizarre than it already was, politically speaking. As the year chugged to a close, the “resident Commie”—that’s what many said behind the woman’s back, inasmuch as she once openly admitted to being a Marxist in those hippie-dippy, protest days of our 1960s youth—confided, to my astonishment, that she was leaving the “happening” lifestyle of our home in the Nation’s Capital for supposedly fairer fields in the Great Southwest.
“But why?” I asked, perplexed.
Because, she said, she “didn’t like the turn the lifestyle has taken here,” and she saw “no change in sight, regardless of who was elected.”
Blissfully unaware, apparently, that the District of Columbia and its surrounding bedroom communities exemplified the very lifestyle for which she had once demonstrated, marched and chanted slogans during our mutual coming- of-age years, which was the only time that really mattered back then, given that ours was on the cusp of becoming the “It Generation,” the Ones Who Changed the World—the disappointed, graying visage looking at me from across the table came as something of a shock. Instead of being a smug representative of the “It” generation, there was only “Me.”
Despite her multiple PhDs in cutting-edge disciplines such as women’s studies, political “science” and environmentalism, in my neighbor’s mind, the “Its” had accomplished next to nothing, leaving the “Me Generation” in charge.
Like most young people our age, I was never part of the “It” crowd, having stupidly declared a major for a financially responsible (and maybe even emotionally satisfying) career, looked around for (and gratefully found) Mr. Right, rewarded my parents with respectable, if not exactly stellar, grades and “ate my peas,” so to speak. Thus, I was mightily disturbed to hear that now, nearing retirement age, anybody at all was actually in charge, much less this “Me Generation.”
“It” was all very confusing… When did “It” turn into “Me”?
Was it merely “all so simple then,” as per the song from the tear-jerker film, The Way We Were, starring Barbra Streisand and Robert Redford? Well, from the way my neighbor was now shaking her graying head, things certainly hadn’t turned out as expected: “Too many rules…,” she complained. “And surveillance cameras—can you believe it, @#$% surveillance EVERYWHERE?
Can’t even take your dog for a romp in the woods without some @#$% know-it-all pig snooping around making sure you have a baggie clipped to your belt! And no trash cans! All these taxes, and not a single @#$% garbage bin to dump your baggie full of droppings! Do they really think people want to walk for an hour in the great, green outdoors with a bag full of p_ _p in their hands? And speaking of TAXES! For what? The lights go out every time we have a little rain! I mean, this isn’t 1940! Aren’t we due a few upgrades for all this money we’re shelling out? And my prescriptions….”
By now neighbor’s voice had reached enough pitch to draw attention: “Do you believe that just two weeks after being hospitalized for a hysterectomy, my pharmacy gets grief from the frigging government over a two-bit bottle of pain medication! I mean, you’d think I was asking for crack, when all I wanted was a refill that my doctor had already approved!”
I smiled. In commiseration…among other things….
Any conservative voter looking around for a pep talk right about now either hasn’t got a clue as to the morass this nation has fallen into or—more likely—simply hasn’t the stomach for a fight and isn’t up to the job.
Deep down, all the “Me’s”out there, kids like me who were never “Its,” already know what needs to be done: that we need to throw a national hissy-fit. So, what’s stopping us?
The answer lies somewhere between what our highly educated betters call “peer conditioning” (a.k.a. “the herd mentality”)—a comfort zone we’ve all grown rather accustomed to, with “a little help from our friends” in the mental-hygiene movement—coupled to just the right combination of fatalism mixed with “Stockholm Syndrome.” That’s all our nation’s therapeutic propagandists, or maybe “minders” is the more appropriate term, need to keep us “in our place.” Your counselor (a.k.a. “therapist”) is your friend…just like the nice policeman of our youth used to be, an amiable being that can be trusted to tell us what to do, what to think, and who our candidates will be.
We have rules, after all, and we’re all equal under those rules…some, of course, more so than others (for openers, start with the forthcoming movie of Marion Barry, ruefully known locally and nationally as Washington, DC’s mayor-for-life, a man who still pontificates from his perch on the Washington’s city council, after being caught red-handed in a hotel room high on the most potent of illicit drugs—and with a prostitute, too).
The fact is, if you need to ask how to proceed in Election Year 2012, you don’t really want to know. Whether one wishes to admit it or not, the 60s and 70s-era classmates we knew variously as communists, Marxists, Leninists, Stalinists or just plain agitators and upstarts—were frequently connected in some way, knowingly or unwittingly, to the likes of priggish riffraff such as A. S. Neill (author of one of the first radical-chic texts on schooling); “campus organizers” like Herbert Marcuse (author of the free-love/anti-marriage tome Eros and Civilization); and rabble-rousing entertainers like the open Communist, Pete Seeger, or mega-vocalist Joan Baez; not to mention any one of dozens of professional manipulators posing as researchers, all disciples of old masters like Kurt Lewin, Emma Goldman, and Max Kallmann, now conveniently “lost” to a rewritten history. These pros knew exactly when and how to incite a riot.
In a twist of irony, it occurred to me, listening to my neighbor railing over lunch, that many of the superstars-cum-protestors we once so admired— unlike today’s glitterati (Christine Aguilera and Britney Spears come to mind) really could sing, and in perfect pitch, too—only now they would not be allowed to perform the songs of their heyday. Take one old favorite—“Stewball,” about a racehorse that died on the race track: PETA, People for the Ethical Treatment of Animals, has become so rabid that it would literally get poor Joan Baez booed off the stage before she’d strummed the first chord.
And woe be unto Simon & Garfunkel! Had the duo been starting out in the 21st century, they could kiss “Bridge Over Troubled Water” goodbye, what with its biblical allusions. As for the iconic 60s anthem “Michael”: Ya gotta be kidding, right? With its land of “milk and honey on the other side”? Only its ongoing popularity with die-hard aging Boomers has kept the song from the fate of “Dixie.” Speaking of which: the great Joan Baez, fantastic set of pipes or not, would never have made it past the auditorium door with “The Night They Drove Old Dixie Down.” The word “Dixie,” in any context, is so politically incorrect today that it cannot be uttered.
The terms “husband,” “wife,” “fiancé,” and “spouse”are next on the chopping block; even TV ads refer to couples only as “partners,” giving the boot to the old Christmas standby, “I Saw Mommy Kissing Santa Claus.”
What, then, of the “Me Generation”: those hopelessly nerdy outcasts of the 60s who were never “brave” enough, or “popular” enough, or self-serving enough to qualify for the “It” crowd?
Yet, back in the 60s we still were in the majority—on our way to independence, self-sufficiency, self-reliance—in no way outnumbered by the lefties. Unfortunately, press accounts pretended otherwise, so we didn’t know the truth. “Changes”…”they were a-comin,” we were told.
So, we, the true “resisters,” if one could have called us that, threw in the towel instead throwing down the gauntlet.
Fast-forward 45 years: My neighbor and I, far-leftie and right-winger, together bewail a Transportation Security Administration “playing dress-up in uniforms and badges they did not earn,” as noted by Tennessee Republican Rep. Marsha Blackburn on December 15, the same week she introduced the Stop TSA’s Reach In Policy (STRIP) Act. A pretentious “security” force that has yet to catch a single terrorist, as per an editorial in The Washington Times, among other places. A likely precursor to Hitler’ SS, or Stalin’s KGB, or the dreaded Stasi, that our parents, dubbed the “Greatest Generation,” worked so tirelessly to ensure wouldn’t happen here. Now, “traffic”-cum-surveillance cameras are the stuff of my neighbor’s nightmares.
She will not escape them in the Great Southwest—no matter whether Rick Perry, Newt Gingrich, Jon Huntsman, Mitt Romney, Hillary Clinton or Barack Obama is elected. The Parties and the Big Media have decided who shall be our candidates— no matter who, technically, sits atop the heap.
Unless we do the unexpected. Unless we turn off the TV. Unless we stay focused and on-message, stop relying on the mostly phony polls, and re-acquaint ourselves with constitutional principles instead of feel-good promises.
Because this time the message we send is more important than the man (or woman) we “elect.” The game is this: If a Democrat wins, the nation moves sharply Left, no matter who promises what. If one of the “preferred” Republicans win (Executive or Legislative branch), then things will go along pretty much as they have, ever leftward, but more slowly, until the Democrats prevail again, in due course, at which point another sharp left turn can be expected, on and on, endlessly—until anything remotely patriotic, traditional or “conservative” is kaput.
Men and women of principle have to throw a serious monkey wrench into this little setup, and it has to be NOW.
So, turn off the Tube. Get your act together. Get serious. Just for one year: 2012.
Because this is really “It”!
Beverly K. Eakman began her career as a teacher in 1968. She left to become a scientific writer for a NASA contractor. She went on to serve as a former speechwriter for the Voice of America and for the late Chief Justice Warren E. Burger when he chaired the Commission on the Bicentennial of the U.S. Constitution. She was an editor and writer for the U.S. Dept. of Justice before retiring from federal government. She is now author of six books covering education policy, mental-health issues, data-trafficking and political strategy with dozens of keynote speeches, feature articles and op-eds to her credit. Her most recent works include A Common Sense Platform for the 21st Century and the 2011 Edition of her ever-popular seminar manual, How To Counter Group Manipulation Tactics (Midnight Whistler Publishers, 2010 and 2011, respectively).
Mrs. Eakman can be reached through her website: BeverlyE.com*******
Tyranny in the Forecast: The Outlook for the New Year
By Dr. Paul Craig Roberts
URL of this article: www.globalresearch.ca/index.php?context=va&aid=28475
Global Research, January 2, 2012
Global Research announces Dr. Paul Craig Robert's New Website at http://www.paulcraigroberts.org/
In March 2010 when I resigned from my column with Creator’s Syndicate and put down my pen, I received so many protests from readers that two months later I began writing again. This renewed activity has resulted in this new year in a website of my own.
My columns will first appear on my site. Sites on which readers are accustomed to find my columns are permitted to continue to post my columns as long as they link to my site and indicate my copyright.
The site will stay up if reader support justifies it. Otherwise, I will conclude that the cost of the site exceeds the value of what I have to say.
This past year has not been a good one for the 99%, and the new year is likely to be even worse. This column deals with the outlook for liberty. The next will deal with the economic outlook.
The outlook for liberty is dismal. Those writers who are critical of Washington’s illegal wars and overthrow of the US Constitution could find themselves in indefinite detainment, because criticism of Washington’s policies can be alleged to be aiding Washington’s enemies, which might include charities that provide aid to bombed Palestinian children and flotillas that attempt to deliver humanitarian aid to Gaza. http://www.reuters.com/article/2011/06/24/us-israel-usa-flotilla-idUSTRE75N4A620110624
The Bush/Obama regimes have put the foundation in place for imprisoning critics of the government without due process of law. The First Amendment is being all but restricted to rah-rah Americans who chant USA! USA! USA! Washington has set itself up as world prosecutor, forever berating other countries for human rights violations, while Washington alone bombs half a dozen countries into the stone age and threatens several more with the same treatment, all the while violating US statutory law and the Geneva Conventions by torturing detainees. http://www.mcclatchydc.com/2008/06/18/41514/general-who-probed-abu-ghraib.html
Washington rounds up assorted foreign politicians, whose countries were afflicted with civil wars, and sends them off to be tried as war criminals, while its own war crimes continue to mount. However, if a person exposes Washington’s war crimes, that person is held without charges in conditions that approximate torture.
Bradley Manning is the case in point. Manning, a US soldier, is alleged to be the person who released to WikiLeaks the “Collateral Murder” video, which, in the words of Marjorie Cohn, “depicts U.S. forces in an Apache helicopter killing 12 unarmed civilians, including two Reuters journalists. People trying to rescue the wounded were also fired upon and killed.”
One of the Good Samaritans was a father with two small children. The video reveals the delight that US military personnel experienced in blowing them away from the distant skies. When it became clear that the Warriors Bringing The People Democracy had blown away two small children, instead of remorse we hear an executioner’s voice saying: “that’s what he gets for bringing children into a war zone.”
The quote is from memory, but it is accurate enough. When I first saw this video, I was astonished at the brazen war crime. It is completely obvious that the dozen or so murdered people were simply people walking along a street, threatening no one, unarmed, doing nothing out of the ordinary. It was not a war zone. The horror is that the US soldiers were playing video games with live people. You can tell from their commentary that they were having fun by killing these unsuspecting people walking along the street. They enjoyed killing the father who stopped to help and shooting up his vehicle with the two small children inside.
This was not an accident of a drone, fed with bad information, blowing up a school full of children, or a hospital, or a farmer’s family. This was American soldiers having fun with high tech toys killing anyone that they could pretend might be an enemy.
When I saw this, I realized that America was lost. Evil had prevailed.
I was about to write that nothing has been done about the crime. But something was done about it. An American soldier who recognized the horrific war crime knew that the US military knew about it and had done nothing about it. He also knew that as a US soldier he was required to report war crimes. But to whom? War crimes dismissed as “collateral damage” are the greatest part of Washington’s 21st century wars.
A soldier with a moral conscience gave the video to WikiLeaks. We don’t know who the soldier is. Washington alleges that the soldier is Bradley Manning, but Washington lies every time it opens its mouth. So we will never know.
All we know is that retribution did not fall on the perpetrators of the war crime. It fell upon the two accused of revealing it--Bradley Manning and Julian Assange.
Manning was held almost two years without charges being presented to a court.
In December’s pre-trial hearings all Washington could come up with was concocted accusations. No evidence whatsoever. The prosecutor, a Captain Fein, told the court, if that is what it is, that Manning had been “trained and trusted to use multiple intelligence systems, and he used that training to defy that trust. He abused our trust.”
In other words, Manning gave the world the truth of a war crime that was being covered up, and Washington and the Pentagon regard a truth teller doing his duty under the US military code as an “abuser of trust.”
In the 1970 My Lai Courts-Martial of Captain Ernest L. Medina, the Prosecution Brief states:
A combat commander has a duty, both as an individual and as a commander, to insure that humane treatment is accorded to noncombatants and surrendering combatants. Article 3 of the Geneva Convention relative to the Treatment of Prisoners of War specifically prohibits violence to life and person, particularly murder, mutilation, cruel treatment, and torture. Also prohibited are the taking of hostages, outrages against personal dignity and summary judgment and sentence. It demands that the wounded and sick be cared for. These same provisions are found in the Geneva Convention Relative to the Protection of Civilian Persons in Time of War. While these requirements for humanitarian treatment are placed upon each individual involved with the protected persons, it is especially incumbent upon the commanding officer to insure that proper treatment is given.
Additionally, all military personnel, regardless of rank or position, have the responsibility of reporting any incident or act thought to be a war crime to his commanding officer as soon as practicable after gaining such knowledge. Commanders receiving such reports must also make such facts known to the Staff Judge Advocate. It is quite clear that war crimes are not condoned and that every individual has the responsibility to refrain from, prevent and report such unwarranted conduct. While this individual responsibility is likewise placed upon the commander, he has the additional duty to insure that war crimes committed by his troops are promptly and adequately punished. http://law2.umkc.edu/faculty/projects/ftrials/mylai/Myl_law3.htm
At the National Press Club on February 17, 2006, General Peter Pace, Chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff, said that “It is the absolute responsibility of everybody in uniform to disobey an order that is either illegal or immoral.” General Pace said that the military is prohibited from committing crimes against humanity and that such orders and events must be made known.
However, when Manning followed the military code, his compliance with law was turned into a crime. Captain Fein goes on to tell the “court” [a real court would throw out the bogus charges, but Amerika no longer has real courts] that “ultimately, he aided the enemies of the United States by indirectly giving them intelligence through WikiLeaks.”
In other words, the “crime” is an unintended consequence of doing one’s duty--like the “collateral damage” of civilian casualties when drones, bombs, helicopter gunships, and trigger-happy troops kill women, children, aid workers, and village elders. Why is Washington only punishing Manning for the collateral damage attributed to him?
Captain Fein could not have put it any clearer. If you tell the truth and reveal Washington’s war crimes, you have aided the enemy. Captain Fein’s simple sentence has at one stroke abolished all whistleblower protections written into US statutory law and the First Amendment, and confined anyone with a moral conscience and sense of decency to indefinite detention and torture.
The illegal detention and treatment of Manning had a purpose, according to a number of informed people. Naomi Spencer, for example, writes that Manning’s long detention and delayed prosecution is designed to coerce Manning into implicating WikiLeaks in order that the US can extradite Julian Assange and either prosecute him as a terrorist or lock him away indefinitely in a military prison without any recourse to the courts, due process or the law. http://www.informationclearinghouse.info/article30075.htm
Assange’s case is mysterious. Assange sought refuge in Sweden, where he was seduced by two women. Both admit that they had sexual intercourse with him voluntarily, but afterwards they have come forth with claims that as they were sleeping with him in the bed, he again had sexual intercourse with them, and that they had not approved this second helping and that he was asked to use a condom but did not.
The Swedish prosecutorial office, after investigating the charges, dismissed them. But, strangely, another Swedish prosecutor, a woman suspected of connections to Washington, resurrected the charges and is seeking to extradite Assange to Sweden from the UK for questioning.
The legal question is whether a prosecutor can seek extradition for investigative purposes. The UK Supreme Court thinks that this is a valid question, and has agreed to hear the case. Normally, extradition requests come from courts and are issued for persons formally charged with a crime. Sweden has not charged Assange with a crime.
The real question is whether the Swedish prosecutor is acting on behalf of Washington. Many who follow the case believe that Washington is behind the prosecutor’s re-opening of the case, and if Sweden gets hold of Assange Sweden will send him to Washington to be put in indefinite detention and tortured until he says what Washington wants him to say--that he is an Al Qaeda operative.
This is the way that Washington intends to absolve itself of its war crimes revealed, allegedly, by Manning and Assange.
Meanwhile, Washington in a brazen display of hypocrisy accuses other countries of human rights abuses, while Congress has passed and President Obama has signed an indefinite detention and torture bill that US Representative Ron Paul says will accelerate America’s “slip into tyranny” and “descent into totalitarianism.”
In signing the Bill of Tyranny, President Obama indicated that he thought that the tyranny established by the bill did not go far enough. He announced that he was signing the bill with signing statements that reserved his right, regardless of any law, to send American citizens, deprived of due process and constitutional protection, abroad to be tortured.
This is the US government that claims to be a government of “freedom and democracy” and to be bringing “freedom and democracy” to others with bombs and invasions.
The past year gave us other ominous tyrannical developments. President Obama announced that he had a list of Americans whom he intended to assassinate without due process of law, and Homeland Security, itself an Orwellian name, announced that it had shifted its attention from terrorists to “domestic extremists.” The latter are undefined and consist of whomever Homeland Security so designates.
None of this was done behind closed doors. The murder of the US Constitution was a public crime witnessed by all. But like Kitty Genovese, who was stabbed to death in New York in 1964 in front of onlookers who failed to come to her aid, the media, Congress, bar associations, law schools, and the American public failed to come to the defense of the Constitution.
In my lifetime the collapse in respect for, and authority of, the Constitution has been an horrific event. Compare the ho-hum response to the Obama regime’s police state announcements with the public anger at President Richard Nixon over his enemies list.
Try to imagine President Ronald Reagan announcing that he had a list of Americans marked for assassination without impeachment proceedings beginning forthwith.
Local and state police forces have been militarized not only in their equipment and armament but also in their attitude toward the public. Despite the absence of domestic terror attacks, Homeland Security conducts warrantless searches of cars and trucks on highways and of passengers using public transportation. A uniformed federal service is being trained to systematically violate the constitutional rights of citizens, and citizens are being trained to accept these violations as normal. The young have no memory of being able to board public transportation or use public roadways without intrusive searches or to gather in protest without being brutalized by the police. Liberty is being moved into the realm of myth and legend.
In such a system as is being constructed in public in front of our eyes, there is no freedom, no democracy, and no liberty. What stands before us is naked tyranny.
While America degenerates into a total police state, politicians constantly invoke “our values.” What are these values? Indefinite imprisonment without conviction in a court. Torture. Warrantless searches and home invasions. An epidemic of police brutality. Curtailment of free speech and peaceful assembly rights. Unprovoked aggression called “preemptive war.” Interference in the elections and internal affairs of other countries. Economic sanctions imposed on foreign populations whose leaders are not in Washington’s pocket.
If the American police state were merely an unintended consequence of a real war against terror, it could be dismantled when the war was over. However, the evidence is that the police state is an intended consequence. The PATRIOT Act is a voluminous and clever attack on the Constitution. It is not possible that it could have been written in the short time between 9/11 and its introduction in Congress. It was waiting on the shelf.
The dismantling of constitutionally protected civil liberties is purposeful, as is the accumulation of arbitrary and unaccountable powers in the executive branch of government. As there have been no terrorist events within the US in over a decade except for those known to have been organized by the FBI, there is no terrorist threat that justifies the establishment of a political regime of unaccountable power. It is being done on purpose under false pretenses, which means that there is an undeclared agenda. The threat that Americans face resides in Washington, D.C.
Of the presidential candidates, only Ron Paul addresses the Constitution’s demise.Yet, the electorate is concerned with matters unimportant by comparison. Propagandized 24/7 by the Ministry of Truth, Americans are not sufficiently aware of their plight to elect Ron Paul president.
It might be too late for even a President Ron Paul to turn things around. A president has no power unless his government supports him. What prospect would President Ron Paul have of getting his appointees confirmed by the Senate? The military/security complex is not going to vacate power. Powerful monied interests would block his appointments. If he persisted in being a problem for the Establishment, he would be victimized by a scandal and fail to be reelected if not forced to resign.
Remember what the Washington Establishment did to President Carter. His budget director and chief of staff were framed, thus depriving Carter of the powers of his office. Even Ronald Reagan had to give away more than half of his government, including the White House chief-of-staff and vice presidency, to the Establishment. President Reagan told me that he wanted to end stagflation in order that he could end the cold war, but that he could not sign a tax bill if I could not get one out of his administration that he could send to Congress.
I do not know, but I suspect that turning things around internally through the political system is not in the cards. Our chance to resurrect liberty might come from Washington’s hubris. Imperial ambitions and drive for power can produce unmanageable upheavals and a loss of allies. Overreach abroad with a demoralized, unemployed and downtrodden population at home are not the ingredients of success.
How much longer will the Russian government permit NGOs funded by the US Endowment for Democracy to interfere in its elections and to organize political protests? How much longer will China confuse its strategic interests with the American consumer market? How much longer will Japan, Canada, Australia, Britain, Germany, Italy, Turkey, Egypt, and the Middle East oil states remain US puppets? How much longer can the dollar retain the reserve currency role when the Federal Reserve is monetizing vast quantities of debt?
How much longer can a “superpower” survive when it is incapable of producing political leadership?
America’s salvation will come when Washington suffers defeat of its hegemonic ambitions.
Many readers, especially those who watch Fox “News” and CNN and read the New York Times, might see hyperbole in my outlook for 2012. Surely, many believe, the draconian measures put in place will only be applied to terrorists. But how would we know? Indefinite detention and torture require no evidence to be presented. The American public has no way of knowing whether tortured detainees are terrorists or political opponents. The decision to detain and torture is an unaccountable decision. It relies on nothing but the subjective arbitrary decision of someone in the executive branch. Why are Americans prepared to take the word of a government that told them intentionally the lie that Saddam Hussein had weapons of mass destruction and was a threat to America?
Like cancer, tyranny metastasizes. Aleksandr Solzhenitsyn, the Soviet Union’s most famous writer, was a twice-decorated World War II Red Army commander. He made mild critical comments about Stalin’s conduct of the war in a private letter to a friend, and for this he was sentenced, not by a court, but in absentia by the NKVD, the secret police, to eight years in the Gulag Archipelago for “anti-Soviet propaganda.” Not even Stalin had indefinite detention. The closest the Soviets came to this medieval practice resurrected by the Bush and Obama regimes was internal exile in distant parts of the Soviet Union.
During much of the Soviet era, even art, literature and music were scrutinized for signs of “anit-Soviet propaganda.” America’s Dixie Chicks suffered a similar, but more frightening, fate. Bush did not need the NKVD. The American public did the job for the secret police. Wikipedia reports:
“During a London concert ten days before the 2003 invasion of Iraq, lead vocalist Maines said ‘we don't want this war, this violence, and we're ashamed that the President of the United States (George W. Bush) is from Texas.’ The statement offended many Americans, who thought it rude and unpatriotic, and the ensuing controversy cost the band half of their concert audience attendance in the United States. The incident negatively affected their career and led to accusations of the three women being "un-American", as well as hate mail, death threats, and the public destruction of their albums in protest.”
In Nazi Germany, the mildest criticism could bring a midnight knock at the door.
People with power use it. And power attracts the worst kind of persons. As Abu Ghraib and Guantanamo prove, democracies are not immune to the evil use of power. Indeed, identical inhumane treatment of prisoners goes on inside the US prison system for ordinary criminals. http://www.informationclearinghouse.info/article8451.htm
A December 30, 2011, search on Yahoo for police brutality produced 20 million results.
Over-fed goon cop thugs taser little children and people in wheel chairs. They body slam elderly grandmothers. The police are a horror. They represent a greater threat to citizens than do criminals.
Preventative war, indefinite imprisonment, rendition, torture of people alleged to be “suspects” (an undefined category), and assassination are all draconian punishments that require no evidence. Preventative war is an Orwellian concept.
How do you prevent a war by initiating a war?
How do we know that a country that did not attack us was going to attack us in the future?
Preventative war is like Jeremy Bentham’s concept of preventing crime by locking up those thought by the upper crust to be predisposed to criminal activity before they commit a crime. Punishment without crime is now the American Way.
The concepts that the Bush/Obama regimes have institutionalized are totally foreign to the Anglo-American concepts of law and liberty. In one decade the US has been transformed from a free society into a police state. The American population, to the extent it is aware of what has occurred, has simply accepted the revolution from the top.
Ron Paul is the only American seeking the presidency who opposes the tyranny that has been institutionalized, and he is not leading in the polls.
This tells us all we need to know about the value Americans place on liberty.
Americans seem to welcome the era of tyranny into which they are now entering.*******
A New Year’s Mayan Calendar: Background & Prophetic Elements
Is it Again the End of Ages, or More Grist for the Mill of the Naïve & Credulous?
Sunday, January 1, 2012
Given 2011 has officially ended, and we’ve entered into 2012 of the Gregorian calendar, many folks are hand-wringing over this as the end of the age, or that the Apocalypse is finally at hand. This is because the Mayan Calendar says so! Or does it?
This article examines the theory that the Mayans foresaw the end of the world, as currently described by hundreds of new books, many of them available on Amazon.com. Yet, before anyone goes out and gives away all their belongings, and locks themselves in a reinforced root cellar—don’t forget we just experienced another “end of the world” hoax. Self-educated “pastor” and mortician-like heretic Harold Camping’s cult declared the world over twice in the last 12 months!
More pointedly, one of the world’s great experts on the ancient Maya and their calendar, David Stuart, claims modern descriptions of the “Mayan Apocalypse” is just another load of prophetic rubbish. This is the topic of the present essay, which will hopefully help the sophisticated reader to decide the issue themselves (in between ringing in the New Year!).
I. History of the Mayans
The Mesoamerican Mayans (approx 1,800 B.C.—1,000 A.D.), created an incredible culture located in present-day southern Mexico, Guatemala, northern Belize and western Honduras. Using borrowed inventions, Mayans were builders and stargazers, as well as superb farmers. They cleared large tracts of forests and made underground tanks to store rainwater for cultivation, and all without metal implements. The Maya constructed elaborate and picturesque ceremonial architecture, such as temple-pyramids, palaces and observatories. They also constructed extensive trails throughout their kingdom, helping encourage trade. One website describes their history:
Around 300 B.C., the Maya adopted a hierarchical system of government with rule by nobles and kings. This civilization developed into highly structured kingdoms during the Classic period, A.D. 200-900. Their society consisted of many independent states, each with a rural farming community and large urban sites built around ceremonial centres. It started to decline around A.D. 900 when - for reasons which are still largely a mystery - the southern Maya abandoned their cities. When the northern Maya were integrated into the Toltec society by A.D. 1200, the Maya dynasty finally came to a close, although some peripheral centres continued to thrive until the Spanish Conquest in the early 16th century.
Maya history can be characterized as cycles of rise and fall: city-states rose in prominence and fell into decline, only to be replaced by others. It could also be described as one of continuity and change, guided by a religion that remains the foundation of their culture. For those who follow the ancient Maya traditions, the belief in the influence of the cosmos on human lives and the necessity of paying homage to the gods through rituals continues to find expression in a modern hybrid Christian-Maya faith.
II. Mayan Religion
The Mayan religious worldview was typically pagan, featuring a pantheon of many gods and goddesses. Much still remains mysterious of Maya religious traditions, but they conceived the cosmos composed of three major planes—an underworld, the sky, and the earth. One of the most dramatic aspects of Mayan rites was the practice of human sacrifice, incorporating both adult and child victims, the latter in view of their purity.
An overview of Mayan religion is described here:
The Maya underworld is reached through caves and ball courts. It was thought to be dominated by the aged Maya gods of death and putrefaction. The Sun and Itzamna, both aged gods, dominated the Maya idea of the sky. The night sky was considered a window showing all supernatural doings. The Maya configured constellations of gods and places, saw the unfolding of narratives in their seasonal movements, and believed that the intersection of all possible worlds was in the night sky.
There is a massive array of supernatural characters in the Maya religious tradition. Good and evil traits are not permanent characteristics of Maya gods, nor is only “good” admirable. What is inappropriate during one season might come to pass in another since much of the Maya religious tradition is based on cycles, not permanence.
The life-cycle of maize lies at the heart of Maya belief. This philosophy is demonstrated on the Maya belief in the Maize God as a central religious figure. The Maya bodily ideal is also based on the form of the young Maize God, which is demonstrated in their artwork. The Maize God was also a model of courtly life for the Classical Maya.
Regarding human sacrifices (which the related culture Aztecs also practiced), the book Gods and Goddesses: A Treasury of Deities and Tales From World Mythology (Edit by Dr Miriam Hallam) describes this:
Tlaloc, a pre-Aztec rain god with a close affinity to the Mayan god Chac, was one of the most powerful gods in the Aztec pantheon. He could bring water to make the corn grow. His benevolence was of utmost importance, and at the end of the dry season many small children were ritually sacrificed on mountain top altars to ensure that a season of plenty would follow.
Itzamna was a sun god, and lord of the east and west, and of day and night. He was founder of the Mayan capital and brought maize and cocoa to mankind, established religious ceremonies and rituals, and divided out the land. He was the most revered and benevolent, god of the Maya pantheon. Although Itzamna was benevolent, at Chichen Itza, in the Yucatan peninsula, human sacrifices were regularly made to the gigantic statue of a crocodile, thought to represent him. This was done to ensure that he did not turn against the people he had greatly benefited.
III. Mayan Calendar
Pictures of the unique and unforgettable Mayan Calendar—designed round with the central motif of a man’s head, mouth open, inside a wheel of separate figures—have made it famous (depicted here). According to researchers at the U of Delaware, the Mayan Calendar is based upon two main elements—a 365-day year intersected by an independent 260-day ritual-cycle based itself upon thirteen 20-day mini-cycles. The purpose of the 260-day cycle was to keep track of specific religious days. Whereas, the 365 day “vague year” plotted the solar year, as does the modern use of the Gregorian Calendar.
The two separate measurements of time were then set up as wheels and run as cogs against one another like clockwork pieces (pictured here). When these two wheels run continuously against one another, it takes 52 years for them to come back exactly to the starting position. This so-called short cycle is known as the Calendar Round. Here, a combination of a day and month position will repeat every 52 years. Also, a longer cycle was their 73-year sacred year cycle.
A. Predictions of the Calendar
Many persons writing modern books upon the Mayan Prophecies have come to the conclusion they augur the end of the world. One such specific prophecy being relayed is that 2012 is zero hour and that the Mayan Calendar predicts that a year after December 21, 2011 the world will suffer an apocalypse. In fact, most books on the Mayan Calendar claim it predicts apocalyptic events—because, of course, predictions of disaster sell books.
B. Itzá Prophecy
The “Itza Prophecy” is a notable precursor to the hopes or fears of a modern belief in Mayan fortune-telling. David Stuart—one of the world’s greatest authorities on the ancient Mayans—in The Order of Days: The Maya World and the Truth About 2012, describes the so-called Itzá Prophecy:
Itzá were a Mayan-speaking people who occupied a large, remote region in what is now northern Guatemala. The story of their eventual conquest in 1697 is a remarkable tale, a barely known episode of American history. What is most striking about it is that during the decades leading up to their fall, the Itzá Maya had prophesied their own end. Numerous written accounts tell us how King Kanek’ had a strong sense of his inevitable defeat, when, according to the sacred prophecies, a new era of the Maya calendar called a k’atun would begin. Yet, native prophecy played as much a role in the defeat of the Itzá as the political machinations of the time, or as did the superior weaponry and numbers of the Spanish soldiers. For the Itzá, the year 1679 was the inevitable “end of an era,” a foretold turning point when time would fold and repeat itself, and political change and transformation were utterly unavoidable. In a fascinating twist on how we usually look on the course of history, native prophecy made the Itzá look upon their conquest and conversion to Christianity as a foregone conclusion.
C. Mayan End of Ages
Many authors have predicted not just a new age, but even total destruction for the earth in 2012. Here is a typical statement, from John Major Jenkin’s book Maya Cosmogenesis 2012: The True Meaning of the Maya Calendar End-Date:
While researching the 2012 end-date of the Maya Calendar, John Major Jenkins decoded Mayan galactic cosmology. Mayans discovered the periodic alignment of the Sun with the center of the Milky Way galaxy is the formative influence on human evolution. These alignments also define a series of World Ages. The fourth age ends on Dec. 21, 2012, when an epoch chapter in human history will come to an end. Maya Cosmogenisis 2012 reveals Mayan insight into the cyclic nature of time, and prepares us for our own cosmogenesis—the birth of a new world.
The problem with using the Mayan dates for the “end of the world” is that these people did not see their universe in a similar manner as modern folks do, according to Stuart. This is especially true regarding Mayan creation and destruction cycles. Writes Stuart,
The Mayan worldview saw the universe as an evolving and developing system, punctuated by episodes of destruction and reformulation as it lurched toward the historical present. Over vast time periods, the gods performed multiple experiments with the creation of people until they got it right. I find it interesting that in very general terms, Mesoamerican myths describe the process of “Creation” as a series of starts, destructions, and restart. This recurrence of creation & destruction fits well with the idea that the present world may not have a well-defined ending.
But Stuart insists the entire idea that the Mayans in their calendar prophesied a 2011-12 end of the world is superstitious drivel:
Many of the books on 2012 have evocative, even alarming titles. According to these strange-sounding books and TV shows—and none of them is ever consistent in its message—the ancient Maya, having some keen insight into the mystical workings of our planet and the cosmos, were able to predict that the world would end or in some way be radically transformed in the year 2012—on the winter solstice December 21, to be exact (although, again, some sources differ on the precise day).
This is all complete nonsense. As someone who has studied the Maya for nearly all of his life, and who specializes in reading their ancient texts in order to understand their history, religion, and culture, I have to lay down the line and assert that any such statements about the Maya predicting the world’s demise or, alternatively, some “transformation of consciousness” in 2012 is, to put it as simply and directly as possible, wrong. Not only wrong, but misleading.
IV. Pagan Calendar Chaos—Apocalypse Now?
Is it possible we are at the end of the age, whether pagan or Christian—such as foretold as the biblical Apocalypse? If so, then how would ancient pagans be able to foretell this better than biblical prophets? Further, why would Christ say “Heaven and earth shall pass away, but my words shall not pass away. But of that day and hour knoweth no man, no, not the angels of heaven, but my Father only.” (Matt 24:35-36) Yet many remain convinced that, in a general pagan revelation, all religions and prophecies are now leading to the end of the age on December 21st, 2012.
But only time will tell. In the meanwhile—Have a Happy New Year!
Kelly O’Connell is an author and attorney. He was born on the West Coast, raised in Las Vegas, and matriculated from the University of Oregon. After laboring for the Reformed Church in Galway, Ireland, he returned to America and attended law school in Virginia, where he earned a JD and a Master’s degree in Government. He spent a stint working as a researcher and writer of academic articles at a Miami law school, focusing on ancient law and society. He has also been employed as a university Speech & Debate professor. He then returned West and worked as an assistant district attorney. Kelly is now is a private practitioner with a small law practice in New Mexico.
Kelly can be reached at: firstname.lastname@example.org*******
2012 here we come
Four things have to happen at the absolute minimum, however, if freedom and democracy are to prevail and Western civilization and the Western way of life are to survive
Sunday, January 1, 2012
2012 is going to be one of the most significant, important years in living memory. Serious threats to the United States and the rest of the free world are many and varied and both will be under attack as never before.
The Presidential election in the U.S., continuing turmoil throughout the Middle East, the enormous and growing deficit and debt in America, the financial fiasco in Europe, ongoing Islamization in the United States, Europe and democracies everywhere at the expense of freedom and its principles and institutions, Iran and her single-minded, obsessive pursuit of nuclear weapons and her avowed intention to use them against Israel and the U.S., the rise of China and a new dictator in North Korea are only some of the things that could easily lead to death and destruction on an unimaginable scale, could easily lead to the effective demise of the free world, could easily lead to the forces of darkness and ignorance becoming ascendant. There are powder kegs everywhere and any of them could explode and cause us great harm or bring us down at any time…there is a great deal to fear but is there any reason to hope that sanity will prevail and that we will survive as free peoples in free, democratic societies, or survive at all for that matter?
Yes there is. Four things have to happen at the absolute minimum, however, if freedom and democracy are to prevail and Western civilization and the Western way of life are to survive.
First, Americans have to vote President Obama out of office, have to ensure that he isn’t elected to another four year term. It is no exaggeration at all to say that without America there is no free world and it is also no exaggeration at all to say that Obama has done incalculable harm to the United States and the rest of the free world during his first term and could very well kill both if he is granted a second. The man simply has to go because there is no other way to avoid catastrophe for the U.S. and every other Western country.
Second, America and Europe have to get their financial houses in order. Doing so will cause a great deal of sacrifice and suffering but current levels of expenditure are unsustainable and there is no doubt at all that economies and countries will collapse unless politicians get their nations’ deficits and debts under control. The medicine will be bitter to take and difficult to swallow, but it must be done or else the United States and Europe are kaput, and so are freedom and democracy.
Third, Americans and Westerners (the British, the French, Germans, Canadians, all other Westerners) need to remove all vestiges of Islamization from their countries and prevent further Islamization from taking place. Islamization has made deep and serious inroads into every country in the West and is fundamentally changing the the nature and character of Western countries without exception, including the United States. Unless Islamization is stopped and reversed, Western countries including the U.S. will find themselves living under Islamic Law (Sharia) and freedom, democracy and the Western, Judeo-Christian way of life will be a thing of the past.
Fourth, Iran has to be prevented from acquiring nuclear weapons. Iran wants to possess nuclear weapons for one reason and one reason only…to use them against Israel (the Little Satan) first and the United States (the Great Satan) second. Of that there can be no doubt and there can also be no doubt that the consequences of Iran becoming a nuclear power would be catastrophic for the Middle East and the West in general and Israel and the United States in particular. Right now, it looks as if military action is the only way to keep nuclear weapons out of the Iranians hands and that action will have to take place in 2012 because they are that close to developing nuclear weapons and the means to deliver them. The consequences of preventive military action would be horrific, but not nearly as horrific as Iran becoming a nuclear power.
All of these four elements are essential if freedom and democracy are to prevail and Western civilization and the Western way of life are to survive. All are interrelated and all begin with getting Obama out of the White House…none of them can happen with him in the White House, which is why he must be voted out in the upcoming 2012 Presidential election. It would be nice if other things occurred too (getting the Palestinians to come to their senses and becoming true partners for peace with Israel, neutralizing China and North Korea and stabilizing the Middle East and safeguarding American and Western interests there to offer three examples) but these elements are the essential ones.
Is there hope? Without Obama there is, with him there isn’t.
2012 here we come.
Jerry is a writer for Canada Free Press and can be reached at: email@example.com*******
New Year's Resolutions That Stick
31 December 2011
A New Year can be a time for new beginnings. New Year's resolutions are one way to make changes in your life .. go to for the extraordinary and live your dreams... but only if you make them stick.
Here are 9 Keys to keeping your New Year's Resolutions and making 2012 your best year yet.
1) Don't make a Resolution for the wrong reasons.
Don't make one when you are drunk, because you think you should or you feel guilty because everyone else has one. Make a resolution because it is something you really, really want to change.
2) Go for "Juicy"
Here are three quick questions to ask to build a Juicy Resolution
a) Why is this resolution important to you?
HINT: If it is not important ... fuggid abowdit.
b) What does reaching this resolution get you that you don't have now?
Close your eyes, take a breath and imagine you have reached this resolution... how does it feel?
HINT: Always go for sweet, juicy, amazing... something that will feel fantastic when you get there.
c) How committed are you to getting this on a scale of 1 to 10 ?
HINT: If your number is less than 9... just let it go and walk away (or start over).
3) State your Resolution as a Goal
Resolutions are born from wishes, longings and deeply held desires. They have to be translated into GOALS before we can bring them to life. State your resolution as specific and measurable goal. You pass this test when anyone could tell whether or not you have reached it.
- Lose 20 pounds and maintain it for minimum of 6 months
- Be in a happy monogamous relationship with a guy I REALLY like for minimum of 3 months
- Have a new full time job in marketing making more than $5000/month
[Notice how these are more detailed and specific than the typical low quality New Year's resolution]
4) Quit Before You Start
The biggest mistake most people make is jumping right in to a new action plan. We don't see two important obstacles...
a) Our life is ful ... there is no room for all these new actions.
b) There is a reason we don't have this Resolution in our life right now... we have habits that get actively prevent us from having it.
The first step is to stop. Look for things you can STOP doing that are getting in the way of your resolution right now. This gets you out of your own way and makes room for your new actions.
5) Make an action plan
Write down the steps to reach your goal. If you are intimidated by any one step... chunk it down into smaller "bites" until you are more comfortable. Then take that first step. Each step you take will show you the next step more clearly.
6) Get an accountability buddy
Find a friend.
Tell them your resolution and why it is important to you.
Ask them to be your Accountability Buddy.
One 10 minute phone call a week is all it takes.
You tell them your action plan for the week and arrange next week's call.
Then each week you call and report in. Tell them what you did last week and what you plan for this week.
Whether you did what you planned or not... all they do is ask this question.
"What did you learn?"
HINT: You can become accountability partners and buddy each other if they have a resolution too.
7) Tell everyone you know
Tell everyone you know about your resolution and why it is important to you. They will divide themselves into two camps: supporters and naysayers. You will be amazed how the supporters have kind words, resources and referrals to help you out -- things you can't even imagine right now.
Spend lots of time with your supporters. Stay away from the naysayers. Nuff said.
8) Treat yourself like a dog
No "nose to the grindstone" here. Celebrate every step of this journey... just like you pat your dog on the head and scratch its butt every single time it comes near you.
Promise yourself that no action step is complete until the action is done AND it has been celebrated. Pat yourself on the back. Pump your fist and shout "YES". Have an ice cream sandwich. The bigger the step on your plan... the bigger the celebration.
9) Set yourself up for success by starting your New Year's Resolution plan NOW!
The first two weeks in January are a perfect time to really go for your resolution while the rest of the world is in recovery mode from the holidays. Throw your plan into gear on 1/2/2012 and watch good things happen. Here's to your extraordinary life.
Dike Drummond MD is known as the "Do-Over Doctor". When you are ready for your do-over, fresh start, reinvention... let Dike show you how to use a "Functional Midlife Crisis" as a major shortcut to living your dreams. Visit his website at ThreeHourMidlifeCrisis.com or get your copy of the Midlife Crisis Handbook at Amazon's Kindle Store.*******
2012: ‘The Year of the Scare’
Survival does not come from Czars or OWS. Survival is for those who believe in themselves and mostly from a belief that has never faded over time: “In God we trust.”
Thursday, December 29, 2011
2012 is about to come hurtling into our lives. If the coming New Year could be defined, before even being played out, it would be called ‘The Year of the Scare’.
With a myriad of sources vying to capture the attention of everyday people, it will get very difficult sorting out what is true and what is false.
Stories about government watch lists will join warnings about coming communication blackouts, the death of the worldwide web, the return of the plague, contagious influenza with the power to kill off world populations, bloody revolutions on the street imposed by shady powers behind the well-funded, media darling Occupy Wall Street (OWS) Movement.
By the time a modern day Samuel Pepys happens along to make sense of it all, events will have frightened some people from coming out of their homes.
People are being deliberately kept on the edge. People kept on the edge are not as productive as they would be on an even playing field.
Seeping already into the ongoing exchange of ideas is a strong sense of embitterment that can be seen on website comment sections, and one steadily making enemies of longtime friends.
Political arguments are gathering heat, and screaming matches are replacing what were once only political disagreements.
Over the months leading up to Election Year, a not-so-subtle shift has taken place.
Thanks to the embittered Clintons, carping Hollywood stars, and all those ready to blame their personal life failures on anyone else, the Enemy of the State was George Bush, who political replacement Barack Obama has done a stellar job keeping blame on for the steady decline of the United States of America.
But blaming Bush is only an astroturfed political convenience. The biggest and most dangerous shift that has come into the public arena is the one that lets off the hook the first and only president who has publicly promised the fundamental Transformation of America.
How does this shift survive in the light of day?
How did it happen that more heated opinion and embitterment follow presidential candidates than the man under whose watch the economy failed, the free market was effectively suppressed and where jobs disappeared into a sink hole and still disappear daily?
As challenging 2012 unfolds to November 6, people will be hard pressed to escape Obama and the Czars many coming Friday “fright nights”.
Much of what is coming for patriots will be based on fear mongering. Most of what the power-hungry government sends out is based on the strategy of wanting you to think what they are going to do.
The Government wants you to think it, worry it and sweat it.
They are shutting down the Internet?
Nobody needs the Internet more than the government in Election Year.
They are now stocking FEMA camps in which to herd people? The only sensible answer for that is: “We’re not going anywhere”.
OWS activists are sending out their version of ‘Survival for Dummies‘ because they are predicting bloodshed on the streets?
The Rule of Law prevents it.
A virulent new flu strain is going to wipe out the entire population?
The United Nations has come up with several influenza scares since Obama took office.
With the mainstream media now dancing along the same party trail as some of the major conspiracy theorists, how to distinguish between truth and propaganda?
Apply the beloved Ronald Reagan’s lifelong rule of thumb: “Trust, but verify”.
The world unfolds now as it has through many other dark and trying eras.
Survival does not come from Czars or OWS. Survival is for those who believe in themselves and mostly from a belief that has never faded over time: “In God we trust.”
Judi McLeod is an award-winning journalist with 30 years experience in the print media. A former Toronto Sun columnist, she also worked for the Kingston Whig Standard. Her work has appeared on Rush Limbaugh, Newsmax.com, Drudge Report, Foxnews.com, and Glenn Beck.
Judi can be emailed at: firstname.lastname@example.org*******
On Occupying the New Year
By Danny Schechter
December 28, 2011
For many people around the world, 2011 was a very tough year, as millions lost jobs, suffered foreclosures and faced austerity, while the rich did fine and corporations hoarded trillions of dollars in cash. But there were glimmers of hope in the emergence of resistance, writes Danny Schechter.
Out with the old. I would say good riddance to 2011 even as I fear 2012 may be worse, given the financial trends, social chaos and political idiocy that we confront every day. Every time, I believe it can’t get worse, it does.
It seems so clear that the political system is moribund and paralyzed – and the economic system may be in worse shape.
The year 2011 wasn't so happy for many.
A tiny sliver of the 1 percent may be in charge although not in control. Their own short-term greed makes it unlikely that they can stabilize the system or do any longer-term planning. Their Titanic has hit its iceberg. Some new technologies may keep it afloat for now, but for how long? We lurch from crisis to crisis in an atmosphere of deep denial.
Barack Obama clearly has no new ideas, and the Republican candidates for the most part don’t know what an idea is, as they pander to a know-nothing base to prove that they can be as crass as they are. Television dutifully reports all this as if we should take it seriously. No wonder only 7 percent of the people approve of the money-dominated Congress.
The Republicans can’t get any nastier with each other and now the Democrats are moving in the same direction with the announcement that Dennis Kucinich, whose been gerrymandered out of his district, is now – oh, no – going after progressive Marcy Kaptur’s seat.
As I think about the year ahead, I am reminded of what I said at this time last year about what I called the year of the “Crumble.” Sound familiar? It’s not a long distance from “crumble” to collapse as democracy gives way to plutocracy.
I wrote then: “The economy continued to crumble for ordinary people with little hope for a quick turnaround, even as some markets surged. The hopes of the jobless for employment crumbled. The faith of the so many homeowners that they will find a way to stay in their homes facing foreclosure is crumbling.
“And so have the hopes of so many of us that our new ‘change is coming’ president would fight for us, would end the wars, would close Gitmo, would abandon torture, would make healthcare more affordable, would give us a government we could believe in; that, too, has crumbled.
“Look back at the devastation of the year gone by: its ugly election, bought and paid for by U.S. Supreme Court-sanctioned special interests; oil spilled by the Gulf-full; wars escalated; climate change unabated; and Wall Street unchecked, and we have to scratch our heads and wonder who is crazier, them or us.
“A year after the earthquake, rubble is still piled up in the streets of Haiti, which has received only two percent of the money raised to reconstruct it. We now have six active military operations underway, rating less and less coverage — only four percent of the network news fare, by one count.
“In contrast, the partisan wars are all TV news covered over and over again, with Fox charging, MSNBC responding, and Jon Stewart joking. … There seems to be nowhere to go, but down.
“The pragmatic compromisers of the democratic center may convince themselves they are ‘getting it done’ in D.C., but they are also alienating the Democratic Party base and disgusting all those who believed it would be or could be different. …
“Already, there are new escalations in Afghanistan, a rising military budget that goes uncommented upon, and more repressive laws on the way. There will be a price to be paid for their legacy of spinelessness and corporate complicity.
“The media still remains at the center of our conundrum, as we argued ten years ago when we founded the media issues network, Mediachannel.org (now Mediachannel1.org) to advocate for fundamental media change. … So we are left where we started, as David Swanson argues, with the need to support independent media, arguing:
“‘[W]e need an alternative not only to Fox News but also to the rest of the corporate media. This is the easiest and most important project anyone can work on. The dream of persuading the labor movement (which can’t even strongly oppose corporate trade agreements when the president is a Democrat) to invest in a new television network should be abandoned. If the George Soros’s of the world haven’t figured out that there’s a communications problem, they never will. But we already have what we need; we just need to make it bigger, and we can do so. We should invest in TheRealNews.com, Thom Hartmann, Free Speech TV, Link TV, GRIT TV, Democracy Now, Pacifica Radio, community radio stations, blogs and web sites.
“‘We should make use of foreign outlets that, for their own reasons, are willing to provide decent coverage of U.S. politics: Al Jazeera, ATN, RT-America, etc. Unsubscribe from the New York Times, stop contributing to any purchasing of ads in it, stop reading it, and read the Guardian online instead. Get connected online, and people will send you the occasional good article or video that all lousy outlets produce. Share that one further, but promote a good website that’s hosting it, not the corporate source.’”
And let’s also get behind WikiLeaks as they fight for transparency and accountability by governments and media. We need to support not only Mediachannel1, but Pacifica Radio, Progressive Radio, Bill Moyers and Laura Flanders’ new shows and sites like OpEdNews.com, CrooksandLiars.com, Disinformation, Firedoglake.com, Global Research, ConsortiumNews, Real News, ZNet, Reader Supported News, etc., etc.
At the same time, we have to go back to an old idea for which online interaction and an email barrage is no substitute: organizing real people. There are more of us than there are of them, but they are organized and focused and we are mostly reactive and emotional.
As James Kwak wrote on The Baseline Scenario, there is a reason for this. Progressives are captured by symbolic politics while the Right is committed to substantive goals. He cites the view of Murray Edelman who divides the political sphere into insiders and outsiders.
“Insiders are basically special interests: small in number but well organized and with specific goals. Outsiders, or the ‘unorganized masses,’ are the rest of us: we have some interests, but we are poorly organized to pursue them and therefore are generally unsuccessful. In particular, Outsiders suffer from poor and limited information, and therefore are especially susceptible to political symbols.”
He cites Arnold Kling’s summary of Edelman’s insights:
“Given these differences, the Insiders use overt political dramas as symbols that placate the masses while using covert political activity to plunder them. What we would now call rent-seeking succeeds because Outsiders are dazzled by the symbols while Insiders grab the substance.”
Happily, this year which seems to be ushering in a year not of a crumble but a collapse, is also the year when Occupy Wall Street and its offshoots emerged so powerfully to capture the national imagination and create a force based in the 99 percent willing to fight the Wall Street crimesters and stand for social justice and equality.
I have been having a happier news year ever since OWS emerged. I have been following its bold initiatives in print and in the streets. I have just finished a new book called OCCUPY collecting my reporting for AlJazeera and other websites as well as my News Dissector.com blog.
Despite all the depressing things that are happening – and the economic depression that so many of the wisemen of the punditry admit is arriving – I am more hopeful than I have been in years. It feels good to be fighting back — and, not just online. The fact that this movement received the media attention it has is a sign that the people of this country are open to something new and will, if well communicated too and organized, join in to make the changes we need so desperately.
In 2012, we have to continue to occupy the high ground and occupy the mainstream. When people lead, others follow. Adelante! Forward! Or. As, Martin Luther King put it, “Tomorrow is Today”
News Dissector Danny Schechter writes daily at NewsDissedector.com. Information on his latest film is at Plunderthecrimeofourtime.com. Comments to Dissector@mediachannel.org*******
Morning Bell: Top 10 Education Stories of 2011
December 27, 2011
*******There was no lack of education news in 2011. From an explosion in school choice options to the Obama Administration’s executive overreach, the top stories included the high and low lights when it came to issues affecting America’s schools.
10. Obama Administration orchestrates for-profit university witch hunt. On June 2, the Department of Education issued restrictive new regulations targeting “for-profit” higher education institutions. The new “gainful employment” regulation restricts access to student loans for students attending for-profit institutions (like Capella University or the University of Phoenix, for instance) if the school’s average debt-to-earnings ratio exceeds 12 percent of a graduate’s income. The net result? De-facto government price controls on a sector meeting the needs of students historically underserved by traditional universities.
9. Obama forgives student loans. In November, President Obama traveled to the University of Colorado-Boulder to announce his plan to forgive federal student loans — a demand made, notably, by the Occupy Wall Street crowd. Students cannot be required to pay more than 10 percent of their discretionary income on loan payments, all of which will be forgiven after 20 years. Sadly, this executive overreach shifts the burden of paying for college from the students who are directly benefiting from having attended college, to the nearly three-quarters of Americans who did not graduate from college.
8. Elementary and Secondary Education Act (ESEA) sees action. Federal education policy watchers were surprised to see the Senate Health, Education, Labor and Pensions (HELP) Committee pass a bill to reauthorize the Elementary and Secondary Education Act (ESEA), today known as No Child Left Behind (NCLB). As bureaucratic and heavy-handed as NCLB is currently, the Senate HELP Committee’s proposal was 1,000 pages of even more Washington-style education “reform.“ Instead of taking a cue from conservatives in Congress who have put forward proposals to allow states to completely opt-out of the bureaucratic law, the HELP committee put a stamp of approval on a proposal to reinforce the status-quo. Hopefully the Senate committee’s solo action will remain a 2011 relic, and approaches to allow states to opt-out completely will be considered in the new year.
7. House Education and the Workforce Committee moves to reduce federal role in education. This year, the House Education and the Workforce Committee put forward some major proposals to begin the important work of reducing the federal role in education. Two important proposals were introduced: one, by Rep. Duncan Hunter (R-CA), would trim the number of programs under NCLB from around 80 down to 43. Another by Chairman John Kline (R-MN), would allow states more flexibility to spend federal education dollars in a way that best meets the needs of local students. Both are good first steps to returning more power to state and local leaders, and reducing Washington’s bloated role in education.
6. Online learning growth accelerates. In 2011, a growing number of families decided to take advantage of the online learning options now available for K-12 students across the country. According to Keeping Pace with K-12 Online Learning, there are now 30 states with full-time online learning schools, open to students from districts across the state. Forty states offer state-run virtual schools, online charter schools are proliferating, and many more families are taking advantage of private online learning providers. Across the country, students are taking millions of courses online, customizing their educational experiences.
5. Administration continues national standards push. One of the more concerning education developments in 2011 was the Obama Administration’s continued push for states to adopt national standards and tests. The Common Core national standards, created by the National Governor’s Association and the Council of Chief State School Officers, have been backed by the Obama administration with $4.35 billion in Race to the Top money (grants were conditioned on states adopting common standards), through the forthcoming No Child Left Behind waivers, and in the Department of Education’s “blueprint” for reauthorizing the Elementary and Secondary Education Act. National standards are a significant Washington overreach into what is taught in local schools, and would further remove parents for the educational decision-making process.
4. Obama Administration issues No Child Left Behind waivers. Despite Congressional deliberations over NCLB’s future and thoughtful alternatives to the law put forward by the House Education and the Workforce Committee and others, the Obama Administration decided in the fall of 2011 that time was up and began an end-run around Congress. The Administration began the process of issuing waivers to states for NCLB, conditioning access to the waivers on whether a state was willing to adopt the Administration’s preferred education policies — basically re-writing policy from the White House. The waivers are another executive overreach from the Obama Administration, and state leaders should reject them in 2012 and demand genuine relief from NCLB.
3. States limit collective bargaining. Education unions have long been a roadblock to reform. But in a bold move in early 2011, Wisconsin Governor Scott Walker limited the power of public sector collective bargaining in his state. Most importantly, Gov. Walker gave teachers a choice: Public school teachers can now choose whether or not to join a union. Other states like Idaho followed suit and successfully curtailed the excessive power of education unions this year. But the fight isn’t over. Gov. Walker faces a potential recall, which will move forward if 540,000 signatures are collected by January 17, 2012.
2. Congress reauthorizes the D.C. Opportunity Scholarship Program. In 2009 and 2010, families of low-income children receiving vouchers through the D.C. Opportunity Scholarship Program were reeling with uncertainty. The program was on its way to extinction due to language inserted in a 2009 spending bill by Sen. Dick Durbin (D-IL). But in early 2011, House Speaker John Boehner (R-OH) made it his personal mission to see that the voucher program was restored and expanded, and he successfully fought for the reauthorization of the D.C. OSP. It was a welcome and well-deserved victory for D.C. families, who had fought so hard to ensure educational opportunity for their children.
1. Year of School Choice. The most exciting educational development of the last year was captured by a Wall Street Journal editorial headline crowning 2011 “The Year of School Choice.” In 2011, more families than ever before gained access to school choice options, freeing them from assignment-by-zip code policies that often relegate families to the public school closest to their home, regardless of whether it meet their child’s needs. Now, more families have access to school choice options such as vouchers, tax credits, homeschooling, online learning, and even education savings accounts, restoring their control over their child’s education. In all, 12 states and the District of Columbia either enacted or expanded school choice options in 2011.
Lindsey Burke researches and writes on federal and state education issues as a senior policy analyst at The Heritage Foundation.*******
The most loosely-wrapped president in U.S. history!
Tuesday, December 27, 2011
Barack Obama is generally regarded as a brilliant man, almost without peer on earth. That is the belief of most in the mainstream media and, especially, by Obama himself.
Several political fairy tales spun by the president call that assumption into play.
The Top Ten fairy tales told by Barack Obama in 2011:
80 percent of the American people want their taxes raised;
Raising taxes will cost the economy jobs(Dec 2010); not raising taxes will cost the economy jobs (July 2011);
Borders between the U.S. and Mexico have never been more secure, excepting only the occasional slaughter of an innocent “Newly Arriving Refugee” by an out-of-control, racist Border Patrol Agent;
The “National Commission on Fiscal Responsibility and Reform” introduced several outstanding ideas, except those that dealt with entitlements reform, spending cuts and other radical right-wing heresy;
Getting involved in Libya was justified based on humanitarian concerns which do not exist in Syria;
Firing 165 missiles into Libya does not involve “hostilities,” thus, the War Powers Resolution does not apply;
Operation “Fast and Furious” was an appropriate under-the radar-project to keep guns out of the hands of dangerous, right-wing Americans by giving them to drug cartels in Mexico;
Adding 30 million people to the rolls of the insured will cut overall medical costs;
Transparency is NOT a constitutional requirement for the president or his administration;
There is far too much loose money in American politics, which is why I intend to force my re-election campaign to survive on no more than $1 billion dollars, unless an emergency causes me to do otherwise.
There it is the Top Ten political fairy tales told by the most loosely-wrapped president in U.S. history!
John W. Lillpop
San Jose, California
John W. Lillpop is a recovering liberal. “Clean and sober” since 1992 when last he voted for a Democrat. Pray for John: He lives in the San Francisco Bay Area, where people like Nancy Pelosi are actually considered normal!. John can be reached at: email@example.com
What About 2012? Is There a Disaster Waiting to Happen?
09 November 2010
The 2012 Check List for America’s Survival
Federal government grown too large, subject to crony capitalism, and corruption
Sunday, December 25, 2011
Many people make resolutions to start the year, but I think a list of things that must be done to protect and preserve the Republic should be tallied.
1. President Obama must be defeated in 2012 and the obstructionist Democratic Party must lose power in the Senate to ensure both houses of Congress will be Republican and in a position to initiate real change.
2. The Environmental Protection Agency must be reined in with increased Congressional oversight and legislative limits on its rule-making capacity. Having fulfilled its 1970 mandate to clean the nation’s air and water, it should be scaled back to the maintenance of these functions.
3. Americans, despite the administration’s efforts to redefine and distract us, must keep clearly in mind the threat of Islam to the nation and the world. A Middle East in turmoil lays ahead for 2012.
4. To jump-start the economy, taxes and spending must be reduced across the board. A tax on consumption, rather than income would be a good start. Only 49% of Americans currently pay income taxes, the lowest in decades.
5. Obamacare must be repealed should the Supreme Court fail to rule that the Commerce Clause takes precedence over its requirement that Americans must purchase health insurance or be fined for not doing so.
6. A serious restructuring of Social Security and Medicare must be undertaken. Older Americans who have paid into the system—it is involuntary—must be ensured their benefits will be paid, but younger citizens should have the freedom and responsibility to structure their own retirement and health plans.
7. Access to the nation’s vast reserves of coal, natural gas, and oil should be increased and encouraged. Oil companies should be encouraged to build more refineries via tax credits and removal of “environmental” obstacles.
8. Congress needs to identify and fund the repair to the nation’s aging infrastructure.
9. Utilities should be encouraged via tax credits and other incentives to expand the national “grid” for the distribution of electricity.
10. Term limits for Senators and Representatives should be added to the U.S. Constitution in the same fashion the presidency is limited. Salaries, pensions, and perks should be capped. A permanent political class is a danger to citizens.
11. The Federal government should be downsized with the elimination of the Departments of Education, Labor, and Energy, along with the Environmental Protection Agency. These powers should be returned to the individual States. (10th Amendment)
12. The nation’s military which has been significantly reduced in size and structure should be expanded with attention to the upgrade and increase of its naval fleet and aircraft.
13. Congress should reject and rescind all legislation based on “global warming” or “climate change” as the former has been demonstrated to be a hoax and the latter is meaningless insofar as the climate is beyond the control of humans.
14. The United States should significantly reduce its contribution to the United Nations and refuse to ratify any of its treaties.
15. Tort reform should be instituted to reduce the costs of health care.
16. The corporate tax rate should be significantly reduced from its present rate, one of the highest in the world, to increase expansion, new jobs, and competitiveness.
17. Public service unions should be illegal. The federal government does not permit such unionization and neither should states.
18. National Public Radio should no longer be funded. The “government entities” of Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac should be eliminated.
19. The federal government should be restricted or significantly limited from the acquisition of more of the nation’s landmass.
20. Strenuous efforts must be undertaken to reduce the national debt and deficit. A devalued dollar impoverishes everyone.
These are just a few changes which, if implemented, would go a long way to reducing the ills associated with a federal government grown too large, subject to crony capitalism, and corruption.
As John Adams said, “Let us disappoint the men who are raising themselves upon the ruin of this Country.” Alan has a daily blog called Warning Signs. His latest book is Right Answers: Separating Fact from Fantasy. Alan can be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org*******
Opinion: New Year's predictions
M J Rosenberg, Foreign Policy Matters
December 23, 2011
This is my last column of 2011, so I will make a few predictions for 2012, some which I hope come true and some which I hope don’t.
U.S. Election: President Barack Obama will be re-elected. Each of his potential rivals is, in my opinion, fatally flawed. The most likely GOP nominee, former Massachusetts Governor Mitt Romney, is a handsome version of that little plutocrat dude in a Monopoly game.
In a time of high unemployment, Americans will not elect a president who made much of his fortune closing down factories in the heartland. Happily, I do not believe Romney’s religion will be an issue, one way or the other. By the way, Romney’s choice for vice president will be Sen. Marco Rubio (R-FL).
Israel: Prime Minister Binyamin Netanyahu will remain in power, spending 2012 girding himself for a newly energized Obama to put pressure on him in a second term. Unfortunately, I don’t expect the pressure to come.
Having won re-election with the overwhelming support (75-80 percent) of American Jews, Obama will continue to accept the AIPAC-generated “conventional wisdom” that his Jewish support was a result of his “pro-Israel” policies and not because he was the liberal candidate. Because many of the big Democratic funders themselves adhere to the view that Jews primarily care about Israel, Obama is unlikely to challenge it. The only variable that might change Obama’s policy would be a major act of stupidity by Netanyahu such as bombing Iran or, once again, trying to physically crush Gaza, as in 2008-9.
Public Opinion: The past year has seen Israel (more specifically, Netanyahu and the occupation) take a major hit with American public opinion. Prominent Jewish journalists like Tom Friedman, Joe Klein, and Peter Beinart (whose upcoming book will cause the “pro-Israel” establishment to quake in its boots) are all vocally condemning Netanyahu’s policies, freeing many less-prominent voices to speak their minds.
In the days prior to the internet, the Israel lobby had the ability to shut down criticism of Israeli policies through calls to editors, bosses, advertisers, etc. Those days are almost over.
On the web, it is the Israeli government and not its critics who are on the defensive. This is partly related to the fact that the web is dominated by young people who, for the most part, have an even-handed view of the Israeli-Palestinian conflict. This is particularly true of young Jews. The other reason that the web is the ultimate in free journalism is that it is infinitely harder to get bloggers fired and, even if they are, they will just keep blogging on another site. For the lobby, the internet is a curse.
Iran: There will be no attack on Iran by either Israel or the United States over the next 12 months. With both the military and intelligence establishments in both countries opposed to bombing Iran, an act viewed as both futile (in terms of ending Iran’s nuclear program) and incredibly destabilizing to the entire world, a war just won’t happen. Sanctions will continue producing significant suffering among the Iranian people while racketeers in the Iranian government and military apparatus make a killing.
The neocons, however, will intensify their clamoring for war, hoping the Iraq model can be repeated. In fact, virtually the entire crowd that helped lie us into Iraq is back in place, working tirelessly to convince the United States to bomb Iran.
AIPAC: The AIPAC conference (see video) in March will be proclaimed the “most successful” in the organization’s history. Most of Congress will show up along with President Obama. The theme of the conference, as with every AIPAC conference for over a decade, will be about confronting Iran. A subsidiary theme will be that President Abbas and the Palestinian Authority are now just as evil as Hamas and that, accordingly, there is “no partner” with whom Israel can negotiate the “two-state solution” it theoretically (but not really) supports.
The conference will accomplish its main goal of conveying to Congress that supporting AIPAC on all matters related to the Middle East is the only way to stay out of political trouble. Following the conference, Congress will overwhelmingly pass one to three pieces of legislation (bashing Palestinians and calling for ever more action against Iran) drafted by AIPAC and circulated at the conference.
Arab Spring: In 2012, the Syrian government will collapse, a good thing, but the transition to something resembling democracy will be as bumpy as it is in Egypt. Also, as is the case with Egypt, any move by the new Syrian government to include “Islamists” will be condemned as frightfully threatening to the U.S. and Israel. Few will mention that the Christian right here (which essentially owns the GOP) and the Shas Party in Israel (a powerful component of Netanyahu’s coalition) both seek, often successfully, to impose their bigoted and antediluvian religious dogma on their respective countries.
Israelis and Palestinians: Both peoples will be saddled with governments (in the case of the Palestinians, quasi-governments) that are almost exclusively concerned with preserving power. Both Israeli and Palestinian authorities will instigate and exploit hatred of the enemy in order to stay in power, and each will refuse to utter “magic word” formulations that would enable genuine negotiations to begin.
The Israeli center and left will confront a government that has as its chief goals settlement expansion and the eviction of Palestinians from their homes and neighborhoods. Meanwhile, Palestinians will suffer from continued ineptitude and corruption in Ramallah and from the refusal by the authorities in Gaza to call Netanyahu’s bluff by accepting Israel’s right to exist within the ‘67 lines, to form a unity government for the purpose of negotiating with Israel, and to totally and unequivocally reject violence against Israel in favor of energetic and nonviolent resistance.
The Israeli center and left will confront a government that has as its chief goals settlement expansion and the eviction of Palestinians from their homes and neighborhoods. Meanwhile, Palestinians will suffer from continued ineptitude and corruption in Ramallah and from the refusal by the authorities in Gaza to call Netanyahu’s bluff by accepting Israel’s right to exist within the ‘67 lines, to form a unity government for the purpose of negotiating with Israel, and to totally and unequivocally reject violence against Israel in favor of energetic and nonviolent resistance.
Anti-Semitism: There will be no more or less anti-Semitism during the coming year, especially in the United States, where hardly any Jews experience it in a lifetime (I never have). But the phrase will be very big because, in the last few months, neoconservatives and other agitators for war with Iran and against any “concession” to Palestinians have begun condemning virtually all opponents of their policies as anti-Semites.
This, in itself, is not completely new. For decades non-Jewish critics of Israeli policies have been called anti-Semites in an effort, often successful, to shut them down. In 2011, however, the right stopped limiting use of the term “anti-Semite” to non-Jews and now freely uses it against Jews who despise the occupation, settlement activity, and right-wing Israeli policies.
They (we) used to be called “self-hating Jews” but since that didn’t shut us up, the hope is that this will. Of course, it won’t. Jews are used to being called bad names by bad people.
In conclusion, despite everything, I look forward to a better 2012. In December 2010, I didn’t expect President Obama to end the Iraq war in 2011 or eliminate the monster who killed 3000 Americans. But these things happened. So, there is hope.
Whenever I doubt that the good guys are starting to win, I’ll just re-read this column by Tom Friedman, or this piece by Joe Klein. A few years ago, neither would have been possible. Progressives are making a difference. As the great Tony Kushner wrote, “The world only spins forward.”
Happy Holidays to all.*******
What About 2012? Is There a Disaster Waiting to Happen?
09 November 2010