The US Defense Advanced Research Projects Agency (DARPA) has received government permission to field test its HELLADS laser weapon system. “The technical hurdles were daunting, but it is extremely gratifying to have produced a new type of solid-state laser with unprecedented power and beam quality for its size,” DARPA program manager Rich Bagnell said in a statement cited by the agency’s website… It is intended for use as a protection system for aircraft…The statement adds however, that the laser could also be used for attack: “Laser weapon systems provide additional capability for offensive missions as well—adding precise targeting with low probability of collateral damage.”
The corporate media’s coverage of Putin and the Ukraine is part of a larger pattern of bias identified by Cohen. He has described the positive US press coverage enjoyed by President Boris Yeltsin in the 1990s, at a time when “the US media adopted Washington’s narrative that almost everything President Boris Yeltsin did was a ‘transition from communism to democracy’ and thus in America’s best interests.” Whereas the US media presented Yeltsin as pursuing legitimate politics and national interests, the frame that US media now use to portray Putin and Russia is that Putin’s Russia has no legitimate politics and national interests, even on its own borders, as in Ukraine.
Don’t feel bad if trade talk – treaties, exports & imports – makes your eyes glaze over. It’s understandable. Most likely, you’ve heard about this Trans Pacific Partnership, or TTP at least once a week. But you’re busy & probably haven’t really looked beneath the headlines. Even if you have, some of the authors don’t always do a great job breaking the nuts & bolts down for you. So, you leave frustrated that they don’t get to the point. This article seeks to tell this story in more plain language. Make no mistake this TPP story is big, full of intrigue, and needs heroes and heroines to stand up to the bad guys. You can be one of the many that are standing up. But time is short because the congress is being asked to shut down debate on this sucker and say yea or nay to it under a limited time crunch to read & understand what’ll probably be over a 1000 pages & then figure out if it is right for America.
As you may have heard, the Fast Track Bill was introduced last week. It may come up for a vote anytime next week. This would mean that the Congress would surrender its right and obligation to debate a treaty before voting upon it. You have an opportunity to sign your company’s name on to a letter, being sent to our representatives, urging them not to vote for Fast TrackJust go to the following link: www.tradewatch.org or call Lacey Colmooth at 202-454-5134 and ask to have your company’s name added.
In its study of the nation’s top twenty-five think tanks, FAIR finds that all have received money from corporations, foundations, government, or major individual donors. In many cases, these donors not only get a tax deduction for their contributions, they also can influence the think tank’s formulation of policy.
Julian Assange…Chelsea (a/k/a Bradley) Manning…Edward Snowden…Dr. William H. Thompson…and the list goes on. These brave individuals left their comfortable mundane lives and took a leap into uncertainty where they knew they could be allowed to fall flat and hard to the lowest depths they could imagine or into the supportive arms of people who would call them heroes. These individuals, we call “whistleblowers”, mined the shadowy depths of black budget operations and brought tremendous secrets to light. The aggregation of their revelations no doubt overjoyed those activists who have long been asserting that nefarious things were being perpetrated by our government, in our name, and with our tax monies…But not all secrets are hidden in the dark. Some are right out in the open if you know where to look.
A lawsuit filed by lawyers on behalf of 1,415 plaintiffs, including 38 residents of Fukushima and 357 persons from outside Japan, holds not only the Tokyo Electric Power Company (TEPCO) but also Toshiba, Hitachi, and General Electric responsible for the 2011 meltdown of the Fukushima Daiichi nuclear power plant…As NSNBC International reported, the Fukushima case is a “landmark challenge” to nuclear power plant manufacturers’ immunity from liability in nuclear accidents.
The Trans-Pacific Partnership’s (TPP) Investment Chapter…reveals how the pact would make it easier for U.S. firms to offshore American jobs to low-wage countries while newly empowering thousands of foreign firms to seek cash compensation from U.S. taxpayers by challenging U.S. government actions, laws and court rulings before unaccountable foreign tribunals. After five years of secretive TPP negotiations, the text – leaked by WikiLeaks –proves that growing concerns about the controversial “investor-state dispute settlement” (ISDS) system that the TPP would extend are well justified, Public Citizen said.
If demagoguery and fear-mongering were treason, there would be almost no one left in Congress. Bogus pontification in support of political positioning is never pretty, but it’s hardly the sole province of Republicans, even if they’re better at it than most. Dishonest posturing to gull the ignorant is hardly the stuff of treason. Real treason requires some real courage. Treason is a limited-opportunity option in the Constitution. The Constitution is very clear as to what constitutes treason, and it’s not just any lawless, stupid, unprincipled act that threatens to draw the nation into a war with Iran that only a tiny minority of Americans and some Israelis really want, or even want to risk.
After Bibi Netanyahu’s provocative speech to Congress, The New York Times provided helpful clarifications in an article headlined “What Iran Won’t Say About the Bomb.” Written by two superbly expert reporters, William Broad and David Sanger, the piece walked through the technical complexities for non-experts (myself included) and explained key questions Iranians have failed to answer. But this leads me to ask a different question: What about Israel’s bomb?
“In Gaza, 1.7 million Palestinians currently live without clean drinking water…95 percent of the water in Gaza does not meet World Health Organization (WHO) standards for human consumption…26 percent of disease in Gaza results from contaminated water supplies…[and] there is discrimination in water allocation….”
Condemning Netanyahu’s efforts to “sabotage diplomacy,” grassroots groups called on lawmakers ahead of time to skip his speech before the US Congress.
Robert Reich gives one of the best descriptions of the nature & dangers of the Trans-Pacific Partnership in a less than 3 minute video. The effort to have this secretive, nontransparent proposal put on a “fast track”, smacks of Tammany Hall-style politics that benefits no one but fat cats. And, after years of the public hoping for bipartisanship in Congress, isn’t it ironic that this is the issue where Republicans are supporting the president in large & growing numbers?