Many in the precious metals community are eagerly anticipating a complete systemic collapse of the financial system because as “preppers”, they expect to not only survive, but to prosper in a SHTF scenario. We suspect however that the following MUST READ account of surviving the Bosnian war in the midst of a complete collapse of the grid will be eye-opening in just how difficult it is to survive a full-on Mad Max scenario, even if one has spent years preparing for it.
I am from Bosnia. You know, between 1992 and 1995, it was hell. For one year, I lived and survived in a city with 6,000 people without water, electricity, gasoline, medical help, civil defense, distribution service, any kind of traditional service or centralized rule.
Today, me and my family are well-prepared, I am well-armed. I have experience. It does not matter what will happen: an earthquake, a war, a tsunami, aliens, terrorists, economic collapse, uprising. The important part is that something will happen.
The following is my experience:
Our city was blockaded by the army; and for one year, life in the city turned into total crap. We had no army, no police. We only had armed groups; those armed protected their homes and families.
When it all started, some of us were better prepared. But most of the neighbors’ families had enough food only for a few days. Some had pistols; a few had AK-47s or shotguns.
After a month or two, gangs started operating, destroying everything. Hospitals, for example, turned into slaughterhouses. There was no more police. About 80 percent of the hospital staff were gone. I got lucky. My family at the time was fairly large (15 people in a large house, six pistols, three AKs), and we survived (most of us, at least).
The Americans dropped MREs every 10 days to help blockaded cities. This was never enough. Some — very few — had gardens. It took three months for the first rumors to spread of men dying from hunger and cold. We removed all the doors, the window frames from abandoned houses, ripped up the floors and burned the furniture for heat. Many died from diseases, especially from the water (two from my own family). We drank mostly rainwater, ate pigeons and even rats.
Money soon became worthless. We returned to an exchange. For a tin can of tushonka (think Soviet spam), you could have a woman. (It is hard to speak of it, but it is true.) Most of the women who sold themselves were desperate mothers.
Arms, ammunition, candles, lighters, antibiotics, gasoline, batteries and food. We fought for these things like animals. In these situations, it all changes. Men become monsters. It was disgusting.
Strength was in numbers. A man living alone getting killed and robbed would be just a matter of time, even if he was armed.
Today, me and my family are well-prepared, I am well-armed. I have experience.
It does not matter what will happen: an earthquake, a war, a tsunami, aliens, terrorists, economic collapse, uprising. The important part is that something will happen.
Here’s my experience: You can’t make it on your own. Don’t stay apart from your family; prepare together, choose reliable friends.
1. How to move safely in a city
The city was divided into communities along streets. Our street (15 to 20 homes) had patrols (five armed men every week) to watch for gangs and for our enemies.
All the exchanges occurred in the street. About 5 kilometers away was an entire street for trading, all well-organized; but going there was too dangerous because of the snipers. You could also get robbed by bandits. I only went there twice, when I needed something really rare (list of medicine, mainly antibiotics, of the French original of the texts).
Nobody used automobiles in the city: The streets were blocked by wreckage and by abandoned cars. Gasoline was very expensive. If one needed to go somewhere, that was done at night. Never travel alone or in groups that were too big — always two to three men. All armed, travel swift, in the shadows, cross streets through ruins, not along open streets.
There were many gangs 10 to 15 men strong, some as large as 50 men. But there were also many normal men, like you and me, fathers and grandfathers, who killed and robbed. There were no “good” and “bad” men. Most were in the middle and ready for the worst.
2. What about wood? Your home city is surrounded by woods; why did you burn doors and furniture?
There were not that many woods around the city. It was very beautiful — restaurants, cinemas, schools, even an airport. Every tree in the city and in the city park was cut down for fuel in the first two months.
Without electricity for cooking and heat, we burned anything that burned. Furniture, doors, flooring: That wood burns swiftly. We had no suburbs or suburban farms. The enemy was in the suburbs. We were surrounded. Even in the city you never knew who was the enemy at any given point.
3. What knowledge was useful to you in that period?
To imagine the situation a bit better, you should know it was practically a return to the Stone Age.
For example, I had a container of cooking gas. But I did not use it for heat. That would be too expensive! I attached a nozzle to it I made myself and used to fill lighters. Lighters were precious.
If a man brought an empty lighter, I would fill it; and he would give me a tin of food or a candle.
I was a paramedic. In these conditions, my knowledge was my wealth. Be curious and skilled. In these conditions, the ability to fix things is more valuable than gold.
Items and supplies will inevitably run out, but your skills will keep you fed.
I wish to say this: Learn to fix things, shoes or people.
My neighbor, for example, knew how to make kerosene for lamps. He never went hungry.
4. If you had three months to prepare now, what would you do?
Three months? Run away from the country? (joking)
Today, I know everything can collapse really fast. I have a stockpile of food, hygiene items, batteries — enough to last me for six months.
I live in a very secure flat and own a home with a shelter in a village 5 kilometers away. Another six-month supply there, too. That’s a small village; most people there are well-prepared. The war had taught them.
I have four weapons and 2,000 rounds for each.
I have a garden and have learned gardening. Also, I have a good instinct. You know, when everyone around you keeps telling you it’ll all be fine, but I know it will all collapse.
I have strength to do what I need to protect my family. Because when it all collapses, you must be ready to do “bad” things to keep your children alive and protect your family.
Surviving on your own is practically impossible. (That’s what I think.) Even you’re armed and ready, if you’re alone, you’ll die. I have seen that happen many times.
Families and groups, well-prepared, with skills and knowledge in various fields: That’s much better.
5. What should you stockpile?
That depends. If you plan to live by theft, all you need is weapons and ammo. Lots of ammo.
If not, more food, hygiene items, batteries, accumulators, little trading items (knives, lighters, flints, soap). Also, alcohol of a type that keeps well. The cheapest whiskey is a good trading item.
Many people died from insufficient hygiene. You’ll need simple items in great amounts. For example, garbage bags. Lots of them. And toilet papers. Non-reusable dishes and cups: You’ll need lots of them. I know that because we didn’t have any at all.
As for me, a supply of hygiene items is perhaps more important than food. You can shoot a pigeon. You can find a plant to eat. You can’t find or shoot any disinfectant.
Disinfectant, detergents, bleach, soap, gloves, masks.
First aid skills, washing wounds and burns. Perhaps you will find a doctor and will not be able to pay him.
Learn to use antibiotics. It’s good to have a stockpile of them.
You should choose the simplest weapons. I carry a Glock .45. I like it, but it’s a rare gun here. So I have two TT pistols, too. (Everyone has them and ammo is common.)
I don’t like Kalashnikov’s, but again, same story. Everyone has them; so do I.
You must own small, unnoticeable items. For example, a generator is good, but 1,000 BIC lighters are better. A generator will attract attention if there’s any trouble, but 1,000 lighters are compact, cheap and can always be traded.
We usually collected rainwater into four large barrels and then boiled it. There was a small river, but the water in it became very dirty very fast.
It’s also important to have containers for water: barrels and buckets.
6. Were gold and silver useful?
Yes. I personally traded all the gold in the house for ammunition.
Sometimes, we got our hands on money: dollars and Deutschmarks. We bought some things for them, but this was rare and prices were astronomical. For example, a can of beans cost $30 to $40. The local money quickly became worthless. Everything we needed we traded for through barter.
7. Was salt expensive?
Yes, but coffee and cigarettes were even more expensive. I had lots of alcohol and traded it without problems. Alcohol consumption grew over 10 times as compared to peacetime. Perhaps today, it’s more useful to keep a stock of cigarettes, lighters and batteries. They take up less space.
At this time, I was not a survivalist. We had no time to prepare — several days before the shit hit the fan. The politicians kept repeating over the TV that everything was going according to plan, there’s no reason to be concerned. When the sky fell on our heads, we took what we could.
8. Was it difficult to purchase firearms? What did you trade for arms and ammunition?
After the war, we had guns in every house. The police confiscated lots of guns at the beginning of the war. But most of them we hid. Now I have one legal gun that I have a license for. Under the law, that’s called a temporary collection. If there is unrest, the government will seize all the registered guns. Never forget that.
You know, there are many people who have one legal gun, but also illegal guns if that one gets seized. If you have good trade goods, you might be able to get a gun in a tough situation. But remember, the most difficult time is the first days, and perhaps you won’t have enough time to find a weapon to protect your family. To be disarmed in a time of chaos and panic is a bad idea.
In my case, there was a man who needed a car battery for his radio. He had shotguns. I traded the accumulator for both of them. Sometimes, I traded ammunition for food, and a few weeks later traded food for ammunition. Never did the trade at home, never in great amounts.
Few people knew how much and what I keep at home.
The most important thing is to keep as many things as possible in terms of space and money. Eventually, you’ll understand what is more valuable.
Correction: I’ll always value weapons and ammunition the most. Second? Maybe gas masks and filters.
9. What about security?
Our defenses were very primitive. Again, we weren’t ready, and we used what we could. The windows were shattered, and the roofs in a horrible state after the bombings. The windows were blocked — some with sandbags, others with rocks.
I blocked the fence gate with wreckage and garbage, and used a ladder to get across the wall. When I came home, I asked someone inside to pass over the ladder. We had a fellow on our street that completely barricaded himself in his house. He broke a hole in the wall, creating a passage for himself into the ruins of the neighbor’s house — a sort of secret entrance.
Maybe this would seem strange, but the most protected houses were looted and destroyed first. In my area of the city, there were beautiful houses with walls, dogs, alarms and barred windows. People attacked them first. Some held out; others didn’t. It all depended how many hands and guns they had inside.
I think defense is very important, but it must be carried out unobtrusively. If you are in a city and SHTF comes, you need a simple, non-flashy place, with lots of guns and ammo.
How much ammo? As much as possible.
Make your house as unattractive as you can.
Right now, I own a steel door, but that’s just against the first wave of chaos. After that passes, I will leave the city to rejoin a larger group of people, my friends and family.
There were some situations during the war. There’s no need for details, but we always had superior firepower and a brick wall on our side.
We also constantly kept someone watching the streets. Quality organization is paramount in case of gang attacks.
Shooting was constantly heard in the city.
Our perimeter was defended primitively. All the exits were barricaded and had little firing slits. Inside we had at least five family members ready for battle at any time and one man in the street, hidden in a shelter.
We stayed home through the day to avoid sniper fire.
At first, the weak perish. Then, the rest fight.
During the day, the streets were practically empty due to sniper fire. Defenses were oriented toward short-range combat alone. Many died if they went out to gather information, for example. It’s important to remember we had no information, no radio, no TV — only rumors and nothing else.
There was no organized army; every man fought. We had no choice. Everybody was armed, ready to defend themselves.
You should not wear quality items in the city; someone will murder you and take them. Don’t even carry a “pretty” long arm, it will attract attention.
Let me tell you something: If SHTF starts tomorrow, I’ll be humble. I’ll look like everyone else. Desperate, fearful. Maybe I’ll even shout and cry a little bit.
Pretty clothing is excluded altogether. I will not go out in my new tactical outfit to shout: “I have come! You’re doomed, bad guys!” No, I’ll stay aside, well-armed, well-prepared, waiting and evaluating my possibilities, with my best friend or brother.
Super-defenses, super-guns are meaningless. If people think they should steal your things, that you’re profitable, they will. It’s only a question of time and the amount of guns and hands.
10. How was the situation with toilets?
We used shovels and a patch of earth near the house. Does it seem dirty? It was. We washed with rainwater or in the river, but most of the time the latter was too dangerous. We had no toilet paper; and if we had any, I would have traded it away.
It was a “dirty” business.
Let me give you a piece of advice: You need guns and ammo first — and second, everything else. Literally everything! All depends on the space and money you have.
If you forget something, there will always be someone to trade with for it. But if you forget weapons and ammo, there will be no access to trading for you.
I don’t think big families are extra mouths. Big families means both more guns and strength — and from there, everyone prepares on his own.
11. How did people treat the sick and the injured?
Most injuries were from gunfire. Without a specialist and without equipment, if an injured man found a doctor somewhere, he had about a 30 percent chance of survival.
It ain’t the movie. People died. Many died from infections of superficial wounds. I had antibiotics for three to four uses — for the family, of course.
People died foolishly quite often. Simple diarrhea will kill you in a few days without medicine, with limited amounts of water.
There were many skin diseases and food poisonings… nothing to it.
Many used local plants and pure alcohol — enough for the short-term, but useless in the long term.
Hygiene is very important, as well as having as much medicine as possible — especially antibiotics.
Source: Silver Doctors
The United Nations Special Rapporteur for Palestine, Professor Richard Falk, came to Lebanon last week on an unofficial visit to survey opinion while fact finding the condition in Palestinian refugee’s camps.
It was the Professors first visit to Lebanon since the fateful summer of 1982. Back then, en route by sea to Beirut, which was under Israeli siege and blockade, Falk was Vice-Chair of the Sean McBride Commission of Inquiry into Israeli crimes against Lebanon. Mid –way between Cyprus and Lebanon, the Zionist navy, in a blatant act of piracy on the high seas, intercepted, circled and demanded the passenger list from the vessel.
Eventually, under reported American pressure via US Envoy Morris Draper’s telephoned profanity to Tel Aviv, the pirates allowed Falk’s delegation to disembark at the port of Jounieh, just north of Beirut. Draper, who like so many US diplomats, claims he finally “saw the light after retiring”, told this observer that “I never swore so much in my life as I did at those SOBS during that summer of 1982 and after I learned the details of Ariel Sharon’s choreography of the Sabra-Shatila massacre!” Ambassador Draper added, “The world will never know the extent of Israeli crimes committed against Lebanon and its refugees until Washington threatens to cut off all aid until Tel Aviv opens up its archives on this period.”
Professor Falk, as he mentioned during several events here, including a first-rate conference on the status of Palestinian refugees in Lebanon and their struggle for the most elementary civil rights to work and to own a home, organized by the Institute of Palestine Studies, came to Lebanon not to offer counsel to Lebanon’s sects or even to the Palestinians. (The IPS, (http://www.palestine-studies.org) founded in 1969, is considered by this observer and many others, as the most reliable and authoritative source of information on Palestinian affairs and the Arab-Israel conflict.)
Falk came to listen and to learn. He did both. He listened intently to each speaker, scribing hurried notes regarding the current conditions of Palestinian refugee, including education and health status, in Lebanon’s 12 camps and two dozen “gatherings,” reports that were presented by several academics and NGO’s based here.
Falk and others in attendance at the briefings found the findings sobering and alarming. They included but are not limited to, the following.
There are currently 42,000 Palestinian refugees from Syria who have been forced into Lebanon as a result of the crisis in Syria. The United Nations Relief and Works Agency for Palestine Refugees in the Near East – UNRWA -reported to the IPS workshop, that they expect 80,000 Palestinians by the end of the year. Others estimate the December 2013 number will exceed 100,000. According to figures, forwarded to Professor Falk by the Palestine Civil Rights Campaign, supplied by refugee camp committees, approximately 6,000 Palestinians who fled Syria remain in Lebanon’s Bekaa |Valley, close to the Syrian borders, in two main gatherings, al-Jalil (4,216 refugees) and central Bekaa (2,352). In the North, Baddawi camp hosts 4,116 and Nahr al Bared 2,016. In Beirut, Burj al-Barajneh camp hosts 2,928 additional refugees from Syria, Shatila and the surrounding areas 2,800, and Mar Elias 862. In the South, 8,549 refugees arrived to Ain al-Hilweh and 2,400 are dispersed around Saida. Mieh Mieh camp hosts 1,512, with an additional 2,160 in Wadi al-Zaineh. Further south to Tyre, Palestinian refugees from Syria are distributed among Shabriha (184), Rashidieh (1,370), Al Bass (478), Burj al-Shemali (2,800), Qasimiyeh (372), and Jal al-Bahr (128).
Falk knew, before gracing Lebanon with his visit, that UNWRA is basically out of money and cannot continue to meet its mandate for aiding Lebanon’s Palestinians even less those arriving from Syria at the rate of more than two dozen families per day. On 5/5/13, the popular committee representative at Jalil Camp near Baalbec reported that they receive on average 8 additional families per day, with dozens now living in the Jalil camp cemetery.
Palestinian children in Lebanon, Falk was advised, unfortunately provide textbook examples of the fact of life that it is difficult to concentrate on school when ones stomach is growling with hunger. And it’s even harder to stay in school when there’s even a remote chance to work odd jobs and earn money for food – something education doesn’t immediately offer. One new local initiative is the Meals for Schools, whose organizers hope serve food to impoverished schoolchildren in Lebanese slum areas. One idea is to give coupons for meals to schools. Unfortunately the scope will not include Palestinian children “at this time due to limited funding”, according to one AUB student hoping to help children stay in school by helping them to have breakfasts.
Palestinian refugee children have limited access to the public educational system in Lebanon. Only 11 per cent these “foreign” children can access free public education in Lebanon while most refugees can’t afford the high tuition fees of private schools. Palestinian refugees who attend one of the 58 UNRWA begin at age seven since UNWRA cannot afford pre-school level education. Consequently, for Palestinians here, while the elementary sector comprises more than 60% of students, the number drops to 28% in intermediate and only 10% at the secondary level. While the attendance rate for 7 year olds is 98.6%, by the time they reach age 11 attendance falls to 93.4%. But from this level, the primary level school completion rate cascades to only 37%, due to astronomical dropout rates. The above figures reveal that Palestinian education levels have been indeed progressively dropping in recent years. This is further supported by the passing rate in the Brevet Official exams (official diploma qualifying entry into secondary) which was in some schools as low as 13.6% in some schools according to the UNRWA results of Brevet exams, despite the average passing rate in UNRWA schools being 43% for the 2009-10 academic year.
Professor Falk was briefed on myriad realities including the fact that Palestinians camps in Lebanon remain sites of control and surveillance by the Lebanese Army. People’s mobility and access to construction materials have been restricted by the army check points at the entrance of camps. Palestinian refugees are forbidden by law – since 2001 – to own or inherit real estate in Lebanon; consequently when a Palestinian dies, even if she or he inherited property between 1948-2001, before a wave of revenge led to the 2001 racist law, the property goes to Sunni Muslim Dar al-Fatwa one of the richest real estate holding entities in Lebanon. Accused of deep corruption by some, their leadership has a history of opposing full civil rights for Palestinian refugees here remain opposed to home ownership.
The UN’s humanitarian chief, Valerie Amos, reported this week that seven million people need humanitarian assistance in Syria. “The needs are growing rapidly and are most severe in the conflict and opposition-controlled areas” of the civil-war ravaged country, the global body’s humanitarian chief Valerie Amos told the U.N. Security Council. Amos cited data showing there are 6.8 million people in need — out of a total population of 20.8 million — along with 4.25 million people internally displaced and an additional 1.3 million who have sought refuge in neighboring countries.
Falk was briefed on most recent household surveys of Palestinian refugees carried out by the American University of Beirut which show that two thirds of Palestine refugees are poor. The extreme poverty rate in camps (7.9%) is almost twice of that observed in gatherings (4.2%). The study also developed a Deprivation Index based on components of welfare which included components such as good health, food security, and adequate education, access to stable employment, decent housing, and ownership of essential household assets. The Deprivation Index showed that 40% of Palestine Refugees living in Lebanon are deprived. The study reported that 56% of refugees are jobless and only 37% of the working age population is employed (Hanafi et al. 2012). It is unsurprising that the poor socio-economic situation often encourages students to leave school to get a paid job.
Despite the importance of education fewer Palestinian refugee students are actually interested in continuing their higher education. Lack of motivation to learn, is believed to be one of the main reasons for the high dropout rates. Palestinian refugees’ access to Lebanon’s public university is limited by their status as foreigners, and their access to private universities is restricted by a lack of resources to pay tuition fees (Hroub, 2012).
The old cliché that stated that “The Palestinians are the most educated Arab nation”, is just a myth today. This educational hemorrhage among young Palestinians has been attributed to a number of factors such as the deteriorating socio-economic conditions amongst Palestinian refugees and the growing disillusionment with schooling and the benefits it brings. Palestinian students also suffer from an education acculturation as they are forced to learn only the Lebanese curriculum without being able to access the country’s system. The following section examines these three main challenges.
Statistics indicate that just under half of the classrooms in public schools have less than 15 students per class while 20 % are overcrowded with 26 to 35 students per class. However, in UNRWA schools, the average number of students per classroom is 30 making them the most crowded classrooms in Lebanon.
With respect to the UN refugee agency, (UNHCR) the current situation in both Syria and among the more than 450,000 Syrian in Lebanon is only marginally better than the conditions of arriving Palestinians. As Maeve Murphy, UNHCR’s Senior Field Coordinator in Lebanon’s Bekaa Valley, explained to this observer and others during a visit on 5/5/13, near the Nicolas Khoury Center in Zahle, Lebanon, amidst sea of hundreds of Syrians, some waiting for three months or longer just to get registered, the UN refugee agency is also unable to meet its mandate for the same reason as UNRWA and the World Food Program and others. Ms. Murphy reported that over 453,000 Syrians have either registered with the U.N. agency or are waiting to register. An additional several hundred thousand people are thought to be refugees but haven’t approached the U.N.
Complicating the desperate situation of Palestinian and Syrian refugees seeking sanctuary in Lebanon is the fact that millions of Syrian refugees face food rationing and cutbacks to critical medical programs because oil-rich Gulf states have failed to deliver the funding they promised for emergency humanitarian aid, an investigation by James Cusick for The Independent on Sunday has found. Pledges for $ 650 minion in donations from various sources including Saudi Arabia, the United Arab Emirates, Qatar and Bahrain, made during the January 2013, Kuwait UN emergency conference, have yet to materialize.
The World Food Program (WFP), the food aid arm of the UN, says it is spending $19m a week to feed 2.5 million refugees inside Syria and a further 1.5 million who have fled to official camps in Jordan, Turkey, Lebanon and Iraq. By July, the WFP says, there is no guarantee that its work on the Syrian crisis can continue. A spokesman told the UK Independent, “We are already in a hand-to-mouth situation. Beyond mid-June – who knows?”
The emergency conference in Kuwait – hosted by the Emir of Kuwait and chaired by Mr Ban Ki Moon – promised to bring a “message of hope” to the four million Syrian refugees. Mr Ban proclaimed the outcome a shining example of “global solidarity in action”. The reality has been markedly different. Oxfam recently issued an appeal: “The League of Arab States must urge all Arab countries that have pledged to the Syrian crisis, to be transparent and to share information about their commitments, and mechanisms for fulfilling their pledges.”
Mousab Kerwat, Islamic Relief’s Middle East institutional funding manager, said: “It’s better for countries to stay away from donor conferences than to attend and make pledges they don’t intent to keep. As a minimum, they should communicate where their pledges have gone in a transparent process.
If Professor Falk was weary as he left Lebanon from all the data, visits, and wrenching experiences he was presented with, it would be understandable. But the humanitarian and scholar he showed no signs of fatigue but rather appeared to be energized by the experience. Given his history as a supporter of resistance to occupation and oppression, Richard Falk’s assurances that he will continue his work armed with the above sampling of data offers new hope for Palestinian and Syrian refugees from Syria and to those who support their Right and Responsibility to Return to Palestine.
Not only will Senate Bill 744, called the Comprehensive Immigration Reform Act, add 33 million immigrants to the USA within the next 10 years, it will cost American taxpayers a mind-numbing $6.3 trillion. That amount of money piles on top of our already crippling $16.5 trillion national debt. When you consider 12 to 20 million illegal alien migrants taping into our social security, schools, medical systems, assisted housing and food stamp benefits—the costs skyrocket beyond imagination.
Robert Rector of the Heritage Foundation stated, “Unlawful immigration and amnesty for current unlawful immigrants can pose large fiscal costs for U.S. taxpayers.”
Government provides four types of benefits and services that are relevant to this issue:
- Direct benefits. These include Social Security, Medicare, unemployment insurance, and workers’ compensation.
- Means-tested welfare benefits. There are over 80 of these programs which, at a cost of nearly $900 billion per year, provide cash, food, housing, medical, and other services to roughly 100 million low-income Americans. Major programs include Medicaid, food stamps, the refundable Earned Income Tax Credit, public housing, Supplemental Security Income, and Temporary Assistance for Needy Families.
- Public education. At a cost of $12,300 per pupil per year, these services are largely free or heavily subsidized for low-income parents.
- Population-based services. Police, fire, highways, parks, and similar services, as the National Academy of Sciences determined in its study of the fiscal costs of immigration, generally have to expand as new immigrants enter a community; someone has to bear the cost of that expansion.
“The cost of these governmental services is far larger than many people imagine,” said Rector. “For example, in 2010, the average U.S. household received $31,584 in government benefits and services in these four categories.
“The governmental system is highly redistributive. Well-educated households tend to be net tax contributors: The taxes they pay exceed the direct and means-tested benefits, education, and population-based services they receive. For example, in 2010, in the whole U.S. population, households with college-educated heads, on average, received $24,839 in government benefits while paying $54,089 in taxes. The average college-educated household thus generated a fiscal surplus of $29,250 that government used to finance benefits for other households.
“Other households are net tax consumers: The benefits they receive exceed the taxes they pay. These households generate a “fiscal deficit” that must be financed by taxes from other households or by government borrowing. For example, in 2010, in the U.S. population as a whole, households headed by persons without a high school degree, on average, received $46,582 in government benefits while paying only $11,469 in taxes. This generated an average fiscal deficit (benefits received minus taxes paid) of $35,113.
“The high deficits of poorly educated households are important in the amnesty debate because the typical unlawful immigrant has only a 10th-grade education. Half of unlawful immigrant households are headed by an individual with less than a high school degree, and another 25 percent of household heads have only a high school degree.”
Imbedding intractable human poverty into the American fabric
“Some argue that the deficit figures for poorly educated households in the general population are not relevant for immigrants,” said Rector. “Many believe, for example, that lawful immigrants use little welfare. In reality, lawful immigrant households receive significantly more welfare, on average, than U.S.-born households. Overall, the fiscal deficits or surpluses for lawful immigrant households are the same as or higher than those for U.S.-born households with the same education level. Poorly educated households, whether immigrant or U.S.-born, receive far more in government benefits than they pay in taxes.
“In contrast to lawful immigrants, unlawful immigrants at present do not have access to means-tested welfare, Social Security, or Medicare. This does not mean, however, that they do not receive government benefits and services. Children in unlawful immigrant households receive heavily subsidized public education. Many unlawful immigrants have U.S.-born children; these children are currently eligible for the full range of government welfare and medical benefits. And, of course, when unlawful immigrants live in a community, they use roads, parks, sewers, police, and fire protection; these services must expand to cover the added population or there will be “congestion” effects that lead to a decline in service quality.
“In 2010, the average unlawful immigrant household received around $24,721 in government benefits and services while paying some $10,334 in taxes. This generated an average annual fiscal deficit (benefits received minus taxes paid) of around $14,387 per household. This cost had to be borne by U.S. taxpayers. Amnesty would provide unlawful households with access to over 80 means-tested welfare programs, Obamacare, Social Security, and Medicare. The fiscal deficit for each household would soar.
“If enacted, amnesty would be implemented in phases. During the first or interim phase (which is likely to last 13 years), unlawful immigrants would be given lawful status but would be denied access to means-tested welfare and Obamacare. Most analysts assume that roughly half of unlawful immigrants work “off the books” and therefore do not pay income or FICA taxes. During the interim phase, these “off the books” workers would have a strong incentive to move to “on the books” employment. In addition, their wages would likely go up as they sought jobs in a more open environment. As a result, during the interim period, tax payments would rise and the average fiscal deficit among former unlawful immigrant households would fall.
“After 13 years, unlawful immigrants would become eligible for means-tested welfare and Obamacare. At that point or shortly thereafter, former unlawful immigrant households would likely begin to receive government benefits at the same rate as lawful immigrant households of the same education level. As a result, government spending and fiscal deficits would increase dramatically.”
If passed, S744 not only breaks the back of American taxpayers with jobs, it continues to take jobs away from American workers with an infusion of 1.5 million legal immigrants annually. That number equates to over 125,000 new green card workers per month.
Here in Spokane, Washington, about 10:30 pm, two fresh chemtrails crisscrossed under the chin of the moon, creating a “skull and crossbones”—spectacular logo for chemtrailing. If only a skywriter had sprayed a headline to crown the scene, a certain motto…perhaps this line by Roger Waters from Pink Floyd’s The Wall:
“Mother should I trust the government?”
The government has been spraying chemtrails for years, heavier all the time, yet they call the whole chemtrail hullabaloo “conspiracy theory”. We don’t do Stratospheric Aerosol Geoengineering (SAG), they insist. Get over it, they’re just contrails.
So what about the Air Force training manual about chemtrails? 
Differences between contrails and chemtrails are dramatic.  And while all NATO countries are into chemtrailing, only Germany has admitted it—though they lie about what and why they are spraying.
Tacit justification for chemtrails is based on cooling Earth’s atmosphere by reflecting the sun’s energy. So what about nighttime chemtrails? The more you research chemtrail ingredients, the farther government designs blast beyond simple denial of spraying, into sinister crimes.
Perhaps a fair analogy of the simple denial: A federal agent is standing in front of you with a spray bottle, saying as he mists your face, “This is not happening. It’s conspiracy theory. Your face is not being misted. Trust me.” And there will always be people frightened by cognitive dissonance into convincing themselves that they are just getting sweaty…there’s a light drizzle…their face has reached the dew point….
Government by Contempt
Beneath the veil of sweet talk and tough love, utter contempt is the foundational sentiment Zionist-controlled politicians hold for the masses. Politicians not controlled by Zionists rarely get elected; those that stand up to the Israeli American Public Affairs Committee (AIPAC) are usually unseated by AIPAC-funded stooges. And Zionist-controlled mainstream media (ZMM) manages public perceptions with such mastery to even hypnotize the masses into believing they are coming up with their own ideas.
Not to say ZMM always lies—they tell a lot of truth, backwards. For independent thinkers, gleaning truth from ZMM is easy, simply reverse whatever they say. If ZMM declares peace, that means war. If they say, “terrorists” they mean Mossad/FBI/CIA patsies. ZMM “news” is all agenda; Zionist-occupied US government is all about elite power. Ultimately, there are no laws, only power.
“Let me issue and control a nation’s money and I care not who makes its laws.”
– Amschel Bauer Mayer Rothschild – 1838
It’s popular to say that the US is the world’s “Superpower”. But the more a person understands designs of power, the more likely they are to realize that when it comes to power, the US is a colony of Israel.
Rothschild Zionism, Rothschild-controlled central banks (in every nation on Earth but Cuba, North Korea, and Iran), the “Federal Reserve System”, the “City of London”—such is where dominant power resides, at least in terms of psychopathic contrivance in a system hideous in light of humanity’s potential for decency, capacity for…humanity. At the very least, humans could do better than relentlessly allowing psychopaths to rule. Pathocracy, rule by people born without a conscience, it’s rule by people whose veneration for human life is generally encompassed by their own skin. Humanity has had millennia to figure out how to keep psychopaths from power. Abject failure in that regard has built up a situation where humanity faces extinction—or at least we face the threat of humanity becoming extinct, but not humans.
A rare step in the right direction: Absolutely ban from positions of higher power anyone clearly pursuing power. Complicated challenge, sure, but at least psychopaths have very reliable markers.
Contempt for the masses runs so deep in the elite largely because of what we commoners allow the elite to get away with. Is there no false-flag “terrorist attack” Americans will not swallow? Everything from 9/11…to the Boston Marathon with amputee actors wearing blown-off-leg prostheses. And besides not being shy about displaying their contempt, the elite seem to revel in being above the “law”. “Too big to fail” has metastasized to include, “too big to prosecute”.
The death grip on humanity of Rothschild-controlled central banking makes the “New World Order” seem inevitable. Many people consider the Georgia Guidestones’ message to be the written-in-stone Ten Commandments of the New World Order. 
“Commandment” number one of the Geogia Guidestones:
“Maintain humanity under 500,000,000 in perpetual balance with nature”.
The inescapable question, or challenge, for the elite: How to exterminate over 90% of human population (roughly six billion people) without rendering Earth uninhabitable. The power elite’s death-and-destruction toolbox is loaded with such as Fukushima, nuclear war, climate disruption, full-spectrum pollution, GMOs, food additives, mass fluoridation, engineered diseases, vaccines…so many shock-and-awesome tools in just the toolbox top drawer. Chemtrail spraying is somewhat of a “Crescent Wrench”, a tool with enormous range of menace.
Researchers have identified many constituents of the witches’ brew routinely sprayed over us, a diabolical concoction containing:
Aluminum oxide particles, barium salts, barium titanates, ethylene dibromide, cadmium, methyl aluminum, desiccated human red blood cells, nano-aluminum-coated fiberglass, sub-micron particles (containing live biological matter), polymer fibers, unidentified bacteria, enterobacteria cloacal, enterobacteriaceae, mycoplasma, human white blood cells-A (restrictor enzyme used in research labs to snip and combine DNA), mold spores, bacilli and molds, yellow fungal mycotoxins, lead, mercury, nitrogen trifluoride, nickel, calcium, chromium, radioactive cesium, radioactive thorium, selenium, arsenic, titanium shards, silver, streptomyces, strontium, uranium….
In addition to adjustable menace, chemtrailing has apparently come up with its own signature disease. Morgellons. 
Zionist-occupied government is spending vast amounts of our money to spray us with witches’ brew, while the fed (Rothschild parasite disguised as part of the federal government) sprays the elite with fresh dollars charged to us at compound interest.
Natural predators take only what they need to survive, improving genetic integrity of their prey. Humanity’s psychopathic predators destroy what they need to survive.
Please consider the elite’s contempt for humanity in terms of what humanity might achieve if not being hounded by psychopaths. The elite subject humanity to continuous and vicious demonic predation, mutilation of mind, body and soul—then scorn humanity’s condition!
Doesn’t that seem…Satanic?
Some important questions during acceleration toward extinction of humanity, perhaps, along with apparent answers:
Are chemtrails being sprayed over us day and night? YES
Is chemtrailing considered conspiracy theory? YES
Is the very term conspiracy theory a premier psyop? YES
Do the masses have power the government/elite will do anything to keep from being focused—anything to keep public power from threatening elite power? YES
Do you trust the government? ____
Senate Bill 744, Comprehensive Immigration Reform, promises the most prolific invasion of America since Hurricanes Katrina and Sandy. But with one deadly difference: those storms subsided so we could repair the damage.
If S744 passes, we face endless immigration numbers to the tune of a minimum of 33 million immigrants within the first decade. Passing that bill means an increase of legal immigration from its current 1 million annually to 1.5 million annually. All totaled with immigrants, their offspring, chain migration and diversity visas, a mind numbing 100 million immigrants will land on America within 37 years—by 2050. (Source: www.NumbersUSA.org ; US Population Projections by Fogel/Martin ; PEW Research Center)
Even more sobering, we face a total population growth via “population momentum” of 138 million people to grow from 316 million in 2013 to 438 million people by 2050.
Their horrific impact on our schools, medical systems, infrastructure, water, resources, energy and environment cannot be calculated, but will exceed anything anyone can imagine. The impact of 100 million immigrants can and will degrade our quality of life and standard of living beyond anyone’s understanding. Their impact upon our environment cannot be measured, but it will be catastrophic for all Americans.
“Unlimited population growth cannot be sustained; you cannot sustain growth in the rates of consumption of resources. No species can overrun the carrying capacity of a finite land mass. This Law cannot be repealed and is not negotiable.” Dr. Albert Bartlett, www.albartlett.org , University of Colorado, USA.
Dennis Lynch created one of the most powerful films on illegal immigration. (six minutes) The number of Asian/Chinese coming across the border is rarely mentioned. But if you stop and consider the implications you will likely come to the same conclusion as many of us. An unsecured southern border presents a clear and present danger to all of us and this specific threat has little to do with cheap labor.
(Illegals migrate from the interior of Mexico, but come from as far south as Brazil.)
These immigrants bring incompatible cultures, religions and political clout. They displace American citizens, utilize welfare, housing and food stamps. They overwhelm villages, towns and cities.
Today, California pays over $10 billion in services annually for its estimated 3 to 4 million illegal aliens and its countless legal immigrants.
“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
I think, at the very least, YouTube should censor them. Well, wait a minute. Not censor, but put up a notice on all their videos:
“It’s come to our attention that these three characters are as annoying as a bad case of fleas. Caution: watch and listen at your own risk.”
The three stooges. Three schmucks in the fountain. Send in the clowns, don’t bother, they’re here.
If people are beginning to get the idea I’m waging a war against against elite media, they’re right.
At the same time, I’m fascinated. How do these anchors do it? How do they lie so consistently, and with such aplomb, day in and day out, without going up in puff of smoke and vanishing?
The Big Three anchors are a miracle, in the sense that they need a whole construction company to build the walls that permanently separate them from the truth…so they can sit in a television studio in New York and believe they’re in the wheelhouse of Real News.
When you see the Big Three are discussing their own footage, but you find visual clues as big as the moon that their analysis is 180 degrees away from actual fact—as has been happening from Aurora to Sandy Hook to Boston—and the Stooges just sit there and drone on…well, that’s a CSI or a Law&Order you just can’t get if you pay the best scriptwriters in the world to come up with it.
“The bomb was a pressure cooker.”
Right, and the Twin Towers went down because two planes flew into them.
Because the Web has been alive and humming, media coverage of every major catastrophe since 9/11 has been rejected by extraordinary numbers of people.
The elite network anchors have been trying to hold the fort, but they’re failing.
Their long-running stage play is closing down.
Despite their traditional skills and technological backup, they’re coming across like cartoon hacks.
These days, it’s better to be a marginally believable doofus like Diane Sawyer, who chooses to affect a persona based on depression, than to be the eternal boy wonder, Brian Williams. Williams, the smoothest of the smooth, comes across like the biggest liar, because he’s the most dedicated of the lot when it comes to defending the indefensible.
And Scott Pelley is Scott Pelley, the hospital doctor you’d least like to show up at your bedside. He might tell you you need an amputation just because he’s having a bad day.
“Who do we need for the most important anchor’s job in the world?”
“How about Pelley? He’s utterly convinced the lies we feed into the propaganda machine are the last word.. He’s sold. He couldn’t look outside the box if we drilled holes in it and let him see a mountain of gold bars and 50,000 naked bureaucrats running down Broadway at high fucking noon.”
The Big Three strut their stuff on the evening news, executing well-oiled, high-priced transitions from one completely false/basically deceptive story to another completely false/basically deceptive story.
Recall the often-quoted George Burns pearl? “In acting, sincerity is everything. If you can fake that, you’ve got it made.” But suppose the sincerity isn’t faked? Then, the schmuck becomes king.
My late friend and colleague, hypnotherapist Jack True, described the television-news audience: “Mind control is accepting what you know to be false. You do it because you think the only other alternative is a vacuum: you either buy the news or you’re left with nothing.”
Once in a while, you can see cracks. Scott Pelley, stewing in his juices, looks like he’s ready to pull his uncle’s old revolver out of his pocket and fire a few rounds at the teleprompter.
Diane Sawyer appears to be on the verge of sagging to her right and collapsing out of her chair, on her way to a fit of copious weeping.
Brian Williams wants to say, more than anything, “Live From New York, it’s Saturday night!” Then a few coiled springs pop out of the top of his head and he winds down and stops moving.
Subliminally, the three stooges are announcing: “We’re showing you the most important stories of our time, and each one has a television lifespan of ninety seconds, after which they no longer exist.”
Television news is really all segue all the time. That’s what it comes down to.
The word “segue,” pronounced “segway,” refers to a transition from one thing to another, a blend.
Ed McMahon once referred to Johnny Carson as the prince of blends, because Carson could tell a clunker of a joke, step on it three times, and still move to the next joke without losing his audience.
Television news is very serious business. A reporter who can’t handle segues is dead in the water. He’s a gross liability.
The good anchors can take two stories that have no connection whatsoever and create a sense of smooth transition.
Brian Williams can say, “The planes were recalled later in the afternoon. And a man was castrated in a horrific accident in Idaho today…” And no one says, WHAT? WAIT!
You take an elevator up to the 15th floor in an office building. The door opens and you step into a medieval dungeon. That doesn’t compute in real life, but it does on the news.
The networks basically have, on a daily basis, fragmented stories, and they need an anchor who can do the blends, the segues, and get away with it, to promote the sense of one continuous flow.
So the audience doesn’t say, “This is just an odd collection of crap.”
The news is all segue all the time.
Not just nationally. On the local level, too. The pounding lead-in music at the top of the show is a segue, to prepare the audience. A) Music. B) “Tonight, our top story: a man ate a hot dog and died …”
The voice of the anchor is the non-stop blending machine that ties all news stories together. That’s why the elite network stars earn their paychecks.
Good segue people are stage magicians. They can move the viewer’s attention from item A to item B without a tremor or a doubt.
It’s often been said of certain actors, “He could read from the phone book and you’d listen.” Well, an elite anchor can hold the viewer’s mind as he reads a sentence from the phone book, another one from a car-repair manual, a third from a cookbook, and a fourth from a funeral-home brochure. Without stopping.
And afterward, the viewer would have no questions.
The news is surreal because the stories are mostly fool’s gold to begin with; and they’re unrelated. They’re rocks lying around on the floor. The anchor picks them up and invents the illusion of One Flowing Stream.
This is what the audience wants. It feels like a story. It feels like unity. It feels like a stage play or a movie. It feels, when all is said and done, good.
The anchor (as his title suggests) holds the fragments together in one place. For the audience, he’s the focus. He’s the maestro. The hypnotist.
You can’t pull anyone off the street and have him describe car crashes, murders, storms, threats of war, political squabbles, 300 cats living in a one-room apartment, a new piece of Medicare legislation, genitalia picture tweets, and the dedication of a library, while placing and keeping millions of people in a light trance.
Katie Couric couldn’t do it. People were waiting for her to break out into an attack of Perky and giggle and cross her legs. Diane Sawyer does it poorly. She seems to be affecting somber personal grief as her basic segue-thread. Scott Pelley is competent, but he sits like a surgeon ready to signal the anesthesiologist to clamp a mask on your face, before he cuts into your stomach.
Brian Williams is the current king of segue. He does smooth-serious-affable-employee-of-the-month-I-know-all-the-news-is-true.
None of these elite anchors can hold a candle to Cronkite or Chet Huntley, the past masters. Ed Murrow was the first star-practitioner of the television-news form. He was working a kind of sepulchral spin-off of Hemingway prose.
Murrow got his first break, right out of college, working for the Institute of International Education, a pathetic front for what they used to call “internationalists” (aka globalists). Elihu Root founded the organization. Root was also founding chairman of the Council on Foreign Relations and president of the Carnegie Endowment for International Peace. In other words, one world together actually meant: all you peons down there and we wise men on top…
Anyway, all anchors can do segue. They are dedicated to The Blend. They put their souls, such as they are, into transitions.
“What do you want to do when you grow up, Brian?”
“I want to take people from A to B.”
Whereas, a true version of the news would go something like this: “Today, in fact just now, I moved from a tornado in Kansas to the removal of restrictions on condom sales, and I’m blending into penguins in Antarctica. I’m doing Salvador Dali and you’re not noticing a thing.”
What does all this tell us? The news, if it were taken apart into its component pieces, would look quite surreal. And the anchor, by blending, manufactures a hypnotic illusion of interconnection.
The audience wants to be put in a trance. Even a several-day event, like the Boston bombing, with all its twists and turns, doesn’t mitigate that basic big sleep. Television news, with a good anchor, with the television screen itself, with the electromagnetic emissions and frequencies, can attain and hold the hypnotic state.
Therefore, the content of the news sinks in below the level of the rational mind.
But with each shift in story line, with each new breaking bit of revelation, with each disturbing image, the anchor must be there to execute the segues.
He is basically saying to the audience, “I’m a few feet inside your personal landscape, your mind, feeding you all the turns in the river, and I’ll always be here, so things are all right…”
Elite anchors invent and maintain certain tones of voice, certain rhythms, certain cadences, certain variations of musical pitch, throughout the stage play, in order to sustain the sense of continuity.
They’re mechanics of voice.
They use their skills to report the false facts handed down to conceal ops and staged events.
They need to believe in what they’re doing. They need to be that stupid. Talent search: 130 IQ, inherently stupid.
They can know they’re actors on television, but they have to believe they’re acting out the truth. Ends justify the means. Of course, “truth” often means to them: that which will bind us all together.
What is the role they’re cast in? It’s: Normal. It’s a heavy part in the play, because this joke of a society has a prime-cut value called Normal.
“Okay, look,” the Broadway director says to the veteran actor he’s interviewing for the lead, in a billion-dollar production. “This may sound strange, but you’re going to have to do Normal as it’s never been done before. That’s what the audience wants. You’ve got to come across as very, very smart and very, very Normal. Get it? I mean, you can emit a few rays of Elite here and there, but you have to do that Normal dance. The audience has to believe you somehow fit in with being a solid American, whatever the hell that is. You can be the news boy down the street, riding his bike, tossing papers on front porches (Brian Williams), wholesome as Wonder Bread, or you can be a socialite on the Upper East Side teetering on the verge of a nervous breakdown (Diane Sawyer), or you can be a doctor moving briskly through his morning hospital rounds telling the interns trailing behind him what incompetent assholes they are (Scott Pelley)…but it has to be Normal at the same time. You’re the brain of every other brain. You’re the conscience of every other conscience. You’re just as walled off from the conspiracy to own every inch of America and grind down the people into dust-bowl hell as all Americans are walled off from knowing about it. You know as little as they do. You’re just as clueless as the great unwashed, but you put your stupidity on display with some measure of grace and style. Got it? You’re clean, sanitary, loyal as a dog, dumb as fog but very smart. You spew absolute nonsense every second of your time on stage, but it sounds plausible, and again, Normal. You constantly change subjects, and the subjects are in no way related to each other, but you make it all seem sensible. It’s a joke. But you’re serious. And you have to Believe, as if you’ve always believed, from the moment you emerged out of your mother’s body.
“And if you need a model for all this, just watch the news every night on the three major networks and focus on these geniuses.”
See the bomb exploding, the one that emits a puff of smoke straight up in the air? The one that was built in a pressure cooker? The bomb that didn’t tear the flags to pieces and didn’t shred the blue canopy right next to it? The bomb that didn’t cause the men in yellow jackets standing in front of it to even blink? That bomb vectored at a very low angle and took out people’s legs in the Boston street. That right, America. It did. I swear it did.
See the purple and pink pigs flying over the White House? They’re bringing food from Mars for all the bureaucrats who push paper in the city every day, the people who can’t be fired during the Sequester, while flights all over the country are delayed. That food from Mars keeps the paper pushers going. It does. It has special vitamins in it. See how fat the pigs in the sky are? How do you think they got that way? They ate the food. It’s so healthy. It’s mystical and magical. It’s just part of the largesse coming to you from your eternal government. Wait a little while longer. It’ll be here. There are lots more flying pigs. They’ll drop off little bags of Martian tasties on your street any week now. It’s the new Normal. Get used to it. We know what you want, and we’re going to give it to you.
We know what you want and we’re going to give it to you.
If you have any doubts and need more information and assurance, just watch Brian, Scott, and Diane every night. They’re narrating the Days of Our Lives. They’re from Mars. They’re the advance scouts for the pigs.
Brian’s the happy pig. Diane’s the sad pig. Scott’s the cold pig.
They’re America. The best of America.
This is why the Colonies fought a revolution against the British. So you could suck up stories, like a vacuum cleaner, from the three little pigs.
The author of two explosive collections, THE MATRIX REVEALED and EXIT FROM THE MATRIX, Jon was a candidate for a US Congressional seat in the 29th District of California. Nominated for a Pulitzer Prize, he has worked as an investigative reporter for 30 years, writing articles on politics, medicine, and health for CBS Healthwatch, LA Weekly, Spin Magazine, Stern, and other newspapers and magazines in the US and Europe. Jon has delivered lectures and seminars on global politics, health, logic, and creative power to audiences around the world. You can sign up for his free emails at www.nomorefakenews.com
Source: Jon Rappoport’s Blog
The planting season is in full swing as is the transfer of subsidies to big agriculture and social welfare food stamps. Which has more worth, paying the Monsanto and property tax bill or running a public assistance program that allows for the buying of lottery tickets? Well, if you are Congress, both have benefit, but mostly for their political value.Why are food stamps part of the Farm Bill? Nancy Marshall-Genzer makes a shrewd observation.
“There’s been an explosive expansion of the food stamp program. To understand why, you have to go back to the ’90s and President Clinton’s welfare reform, which trimmed welfare rolls. To help those cut off, Congress and President Bush made it easier to qualify for food stamps. That was in 2002. Since then, the food stamp program has more than doubled.
That’s about one in seven Americans. Many of them lost their jobs during the great recession. But why is the food stamp program in the farm bill, anyway? Like most things in Washington, it all boils down to politics.
Chad Hart is an economist at Iowa State. He says farm-state legislators needed a way to connect with more urban members of Congress, so the city slickers would support farm subsidies.”
Is it necessary to expand exponentially the Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program (SNAP), to relieve starvation when a “Happy Meal” can be purchased at every turn? Yet the socialization culture boasts of the dietary benefits of being on the government dole, as the urban society continues to consume every cuisine of fast foods.
The Washington Times notes that under the Food stamp president: Enrollment up 70 percent under Obama and that present legislation “allow for those with higher incomes to take food stamps — the logic being that helping people before they reach crisis financial level will actually stimulate the economy.”
What did people do for food before the era of the “Great Society”? Farming was a way of life for rural America from the inception of the country. In spite of struggling out a livelihood from an often-harsh pastoral environment, agriculture capacity grew into the breadbasket of the world. Today, the gentleman farmer needs to master the skills of trading future contracts and applications for assistance.
A starting point for subsidies ”can supplement a farmer’s income and as well as provide funds for rental payments for land and assistance when the market price of a crop is low. Farm subsidies also play a role in the cost and availability of certain agricultural commodities.”
- Contact the Farm Service Agency office in your state
- Determine which farm subsidy you will apply for
- Find out what type of government subsidized crop and animal insurance is available in your area
- Determine if your farm is eligible for the Direct Payment subsidy program
- Ask about the special loan programs the federal government has available for new farmers and ranchers who have been in business for at least three years but less than ten years
Farming as a productive enterprise is rapidly becoming big business. The family farm is no longer an independent endeavor based upon market prices and ingenious management. The quasi-government debt and subsidy cycle, demands a public partnership with federal and state agencies that distort production and consumer prices at every level. Economy of scale seems to be the only path left to plow the fertile fields of government subsidies.
The corporate agriculture conglomerates have become integral constituents of the seed, fertilizer and chemical industry. Both collaborators hire their political lobbyists to expand financial supports, resistive food labeling disclosures and apply economic pressure to stamp out holistic food competition.
The taxpayer should be concerned over the institutionalization and dependency of the SNAP mentality that eats at the fabric of a viable market economy. However, even more diabolical is the destructive subsidization of farming that dramatically benefits corporatist agriculture at the expense of organic agrarian alternatives.
US News takes the position that the Farm Bill’s Corporate Welfare Is Unacceptable.
“Under current law, businesses that produce commodity crops-corn, soy, cotton, or wheat for example-receive a variety of federal supports. One of these, direct payments, provides a per-acreage subsidy for certain farmland owners, regardless of prices, crop yield, or profitability. As a result some farm businesses making hundreds of thousands or even millions of dollars each year also receive a generous annual check from the federal government even if they don’t grow a crop.
Federal crop insurance is out of control. In fiscal year 2012, the total cost of the crop insurance program set a new record at $14 billion-$3 billion more than FY2011. And here’s the kicker-2012 was a year of near record profits for agriculture, even before crop insurance payouts, despite and in part because of the drought many parts of the country experienced this past summer. In every state, participants in the crop insurance program have received more in claims payments than in premium dollars put in over the past 15 years. And remember, for every $1 in premiums, agribusinesses only chip in 38 cents to insure their own crops while taxpayers pick up the remaining 62 cents. That is not insurance or a safety-net, that’s a hand out.”
A comprehensive overhaul of government agriculture policy may not seem very probable from a political will perspective. Nevertheless, the gravy train of public money cannot be a substitute for tilling the soil and weeding the crops. When government legislation attempts to maintain an inexpensive retail food price with public grants, loans and subsidies, the true cost of national nourishment is unsustainable.
The urbanization of the political electorate dictates that the bottom feeders expect their groceries be delivered from a full service supermarket. As any rural resident knows, the nature of the land has its own set of rules and demands. Famine and undernourishment applies to much more than the food supply. It resides in the destructive and distorted government protection racket that leaves the public with a deep hunger in their belly.
As the harsh storms of winter subside we approach the 238thanniversary of an event in American history which provides insight and direction badly needed today. On April 19, 1775 a musket was discharged, beginning a clash of arms over a small bridge standing astride the stream at Concord, Massachusetts. We have all seen the statues and, perhaps, remember the poems.
To this day no one knows who fired the shot. But the unfolding clash shocked the British Crown and set the stage for the first nation on Earth who proclaimed the principle of universal freedom in July of the next year.
This was not a government operation. These were a people who recognized the power was within them.
Perhaps the best lesson to be drawn from those events, which we have allowed to be obscured through the misted lens of time, is that this marked a moment when the people did it themselves. By so doing, they confounded the greatest power then existing on Earth.
The people had come together to determine their course thorough the Committees of Correspondence. In most towns across the colonies small groups met and discussed all of the reasons for action and their options. Today, the parallel method would be the Internet.
The British had been emboldened by their success in seizing the colonist’s powder, read this ‘ammunition,’ held in Portsmouth, New Hampshire the year before. With their supply of munitions cut off from capture of the Fort William And Mary, the colonists were determined to be prepared. Town folk armed themselves and turned out to practice.
The British Empire had 8,000 men under arms across the globe. A far smaller number were serving the Crown in New England. That, the Crown felt, was entirely sufficient.
At the close of day, April 19, 1775, 10,000 Americans were marching towards Lexington and Concord, muskets, knives, and hammers in hand, prepared to die to win their freedom.
Women who helped their husbands, fathers, grandfathers and sons ready themselves, packing their pouches with food, filling containers with water, understood the danger they, too, faced. This was not a war fought far away, but one which would shatter families, homes and destroy their businesses and the food they relied on for winter.
They were a people who understood the value of freedom to each, as part of their nature granted, not by a king, but by God.
In 1965, as a college student, I felt the U.S. Government and Congress worked for and represented the best interests of the American people. As I learned more, and later as I understood more as a U.S. Army officer, I discovered presidents and Congress lie. When I became a math-science teacher in Denver, Colorado, I discovered that superintendents lie when it benefits them. I discovered people lie.
Lyndon Baines Johnson lied to plunge us into the Vietnam War. Bill Clinton lied from the day of his birth. George W. Bush lied us into Iraq War. Barack H. Obama continually lies to us as to immigration, Afghanistan War, Obamacare, his past history and more than we can count.
But the one lie that will go down in history as the beginning of the end of the United States of America goes to the late Senator Teddy Kennedy (D-MA) and his 1965 Immigration Reform Act. He exploded immigration from 175,000 annually to over 1.2 million year after year, decade after decade. He jumped our population from a reasonable 194 million to its current 316 million on our way to 625 million in this century.
In front of Congress he said, “First, our cities will not be flooded with a million immigrants annually. Under the proposed bill, the present level of immigration remains substantially the same. Secondly, the ethnic mix of this country will not be upset. Contrary to the charges in some quarters, [the bill] will not inundate America with immigrants from any one country or area, or the most populated and deprived nations of Africa and Asia.
“In the final analysis, the ethnic pattern of immigration under the proposed measure is not expected to change as sharply as the critics seem to think. The bill will not flood our cities with immigrants. It will not upset the ethnic mix of our society. It will not relax the standards of admission. The bill will not place a burden on the legal citizens by increasing taxes to pay the huge costs for care-and-feeding, medical care, education, etc of the “immigrants”… and additional social-services for their family members. It will not cause American workers to lose their jobs.” [Ted Kennedy at Judiciary Committee hearing on Feb. 10, 1965, commenting on the Hart-Celler Act]
Kennedy’s bill DID flood the country with another 100 million people. It created intractable poverty and entrenched illiteracy. It created cultural conflicts being played out across America in 2013, i.e. Mexicans battling African-Americans in Los Angeles, Muslims taking over entire cities like Detroit and running out everyone else; it imported many third world immigrants lost in the morass of this high speed society and unable to assimilate. We feature “Black flash mobs” terrorizing citizens in Philadelphia, Minneapolis and Chicago. We feature female genital mutilation, arranged marriages and honor killings in America in 2013. We see exploding illiteracy rates among citizens. We house 47 million people who cannot secure a job: thus, they exist on food stamps. Over 14 million Americans cannot secure a job at a living wage.
This new Comprehensive Immigration Bill expects to swamp our country with another 100 million immigrants within 37 years. From 2050, we face another 200 million beyond that.
In the meantime, Congress, led by a “Gang of Eight” senators expects to unload the gates of hell upon our country. Not only will Congress give total amnesty to 20 million, they in turn, can and will chain-migrate endless millions of their families into our country. This thing will become SO ugly on SO many levels, but we will become the victims and no one wins and everyone loses.
Amazingly enough, after the failure of the 1986 amnesty, our borders remain as porous as ever. Nothing in this bill shows any intention of enforcing past or current immigration employment, housing or transporting of illegal migrant laws. Thus, illegals will careen into our country in ever greater numbers.
Senator Chuck Schumer of New York said, “This is not amnesty — amnesty is the forgiveness of something. We’re going to create an alternative that says OK, you want to stay here, you’ll have to wait more than 10 years, you’ll have to pay this fine, you’ll have to pay your registration fee, you’ll have to be gainfully employed, you won’t qualify for any federal benefit, and then after all of that you don’t get to apply for anything until the enforcement mechanisms are in place.”
Schumer lies like a rug, like Al Capone, like a snake, like the 19 terrorists who flew airplanes into the Twin Towers and elsewhere.
- When the bill becomes law, every single illegal alien in America becomes legal.
- Legal status will never be revoked; it can and will only be expanded with every inevitable subsequent act of Congress.
- This amnesty will leader to more amnesties for millions of other aliens crossing our borders or overstaying their visas.
If you expect to save your own rear end and that of your children’s future, I implore you to join the following organizations for free and start sending pre-written faxes to your reps to defeat this bill.
On April 4 the Pentagon announced that it was sending a mobile missile defense system to Guam as a “precautionary move” to protect the island from the potential threat from North Korea. The Terminal High Altitude Area Defense system (THAAD) comprises ground-based interceptors in Alaska and California, as well as naval vessels capable of shooting down missiles.
On the same day, Defense Secretary Chuck Hagel said that North Korea posed a “real and clear danger” to the island, to U.S. allies in the region, and even to the United States. Its leaders have “ratcheted up their bellicose, dangerous rhetoric,” Hagel told the National Defense University in Washington. Areas at risk include South Korea and Japan, he added, as well as Guam, Hawaii and the West Coast of the United States. “We have to take those threats seriously,” he said.
It is the job of defense secretaries to take all threats seriously, but there is less than meets the eye to this one. While media coverage of tensions with North Korea makes it appear that its recent threats in response to the ongoing “Foal Eagle” U.S.-South Korean military exercises came unexpectedly, Pyongyang has a long history of objecting vehemently to such war games. North Korea is using bizarre rhetoric—as it has done many times before—but there is no “real and present danger,” because the country’s nuclear and missile delivery capabilities are rudimentary now and will remain so for years to come. Its three nuclear tests thus far—in 2006, 2009 and on February 12 of this year—amounted to a total yield of around 10 kilotons, or less than one-half the power of the bomb that destroyed Nagasaki in August 1945. At least two, and possibly all three, of those tests used plutonium as the fissile material. Crude and bulky, plutonium devices cannot be fitted onto a missile.
North Korea’s claims to have miniaturized its latest device are unproven and probably untrue: no tell-tale isotopes indicative of weapons-grade uranium have been detected. In addition, at the moment, its uranium-enrichment facilities are not producing requisite quantities of highly-enriched uranium (HEU). The Yongbyon site—the country’s main nuclear facility—has been limited to electricity generation for the past five years, as part of a disarmament-for-aid deal signed in September 2005. The agreement’s implementation was always wrought with difficulties, however. Last month, the regime vowed to restart all facilities at Yongbyon—presumably including uranium enrichment to weapons-grade levels (HEU). They have the technical ability to do this, but even if the enrichment program proceeds immediately North Korea will be several years away from producing a deliverable device on a reliable missile.
In the final months of Kim Jong-il’s life it appeared that the talks with the U.S. on the control of North Korea’s nuclear facilities would be restarted. After he died in December 2011, his young son and successor Kim Jong-un soon shifted emphasis from hoped-for cooperation to confrontation. In February 2012, Pyongyang unexpectedly announced that it would suspend nuclear activities and observe a moratorium on nuclear and long-range missile tests in return for American food aid. That agreement was suspended after North Korea unsuccessfully launched a rocket carrying a satellite a year ago, which caused major embarrassment to the regime. A successful launch came last December, swiftly followed by the tightening of international sanctions in January (this time supported by China), a third nuclear test in February, and the ongoing escalation of warlike rhetoric since early March.
That rhetoric is a mix of bluster and bravado. Even if it had the theoretical wherewithal to threaten the United States—which it does not have—North Korea could not do it credibly: a single missile, or two, or five, would be fairly easy to intercept and destroy, and the ensuing retaliation would turn much of the People’s Democratic Republic into a parking lot. In the fullness of time the North may develop a device capable of fitting into a warhead, but it will have no guidance system necessary for accuracy and no re-entry technology to bring an intercontinental ballistic missile (ICBM) back to Earth. According to the UK-based International Institute for Strategic Studies, North Korea has something that can hit American shores, but a “functioning nuclear-tipped intercontinental ballistic missile is still at least several years away.”
Even if it were to miniaturize a half-dozen nuclear weapons and perfect some form of functioning delivery system, North Korea would not be able to use them as a means of blackmail to alter the regional balance of power. The U.S., Russia, China, Great Britain, France, India, Pakistan, and Israel have possessed nuclear weapons for decades. None of them has ever been able to change the status quo in its favor by threatening to use the bomb. The possession of nuclear weapons by one of the parties did not impact the outcome in Korea in 1953, or Suez in 1956, or prevent the two superpowers’ defeats, in Vietnam and Afghanistan respectively. It makes no difference to China’s stalled efforts to bring Taiwan under its control. South Africa had developed its own nuclear arsenal in the 1980s—it has been dismantled since—but this did not enhance its government’s ability to resist the pressure to dismantle the Apartheid in the early 1990’s. The political effect of a country’s possession of nuclear weapons has been to force its potential adversaries to exercise caution and to freeze the existing frontiers. There is no reason to think that North Korea will be an exception to the rule.
The root causes of North Korea’s apparently reckless behavior are predominantly domestic, as usual. Kim Jong-un, the third absolute ruler in the dynasty established by his late grandfather Kim Il-sung, is young (29), untested and insecure. When his father Kim Jong-il died on December 17, 2011, the military and Party leadership accepted his third son as the designated successor, but it was not immediately clear whether Jong-un would in fact take full power right away. A cult of personality started developing right away. With no track record of achievement and no sign of outstanding talent, he was hailed as the “great successor to the revolutionary cause,” “outstanding leader of the party, army and people,” “respected comrade identical to Supreme Commander Kim Jong-il,” even as “a great person born of heaven”—an eccentric metaphor for a society nominally based on the teaching of dialectical materialism. The titles followed: within days of his father’s death, Kim Jon-un was declared Supreme Commander of the Korean Peoples Army, Chairman of the Central Military Commission, and “supreme leader of the country.” In March of last year, he was appointed first secretary of the Workers’ Party of Korea; three months later, he was awarded the rank of a field marshal.
The plethora of titles does not mean that Kim Jong-un automatically commands the same level of authority and unquestioning obedience enjoyed by his father and grandfather before him. According to a psychological profile put together by U.S. intelligence, Kim Jong-un may feel compelled to prove just how tough he is in order to make up for his inexperience. One of the CIA’s former top experts on North Korea, Joseph DeTrani, regards him as a young man insufficiently well prepared for the position, with limited foreign exposure, who has the urge to prove his toughness to his own military by emulating his grandfather, Kim Il-sung. But the heir is unlikely to start a general war, which he knows he cannot win, and in which China—his often reluctant backer—would likely remain aloof. “It would probably mean his defeat, and his defeat would probably mean the downfall of his regime and, very probably, the end of him as well,” according to the Telegraph’s David Blair. “Assuming that he’s not suicidal, he is very unlikely to start a general conflagration.” The danger remains, however, that North Korea, having ratcheted up the rhetoric for so long and having issued so many blood-curdling threats, feels that it has to do something.
My hunch is that in the end Kim the Third will do nothing. South Korea refrained from retaliation when one of its naval vessels was sunk under mysterious circumstances in disputed waters in March 2010, or when North Korea bombarded the South Korean island of Yeonpyeong in November of that year. This time the leaders in Seoul appear determined to respond to any hostile act. While China is urging all sides to tone it down, its warnings are primarily directed at North Korea. Beijing has conveyed a warning to Pyongyang that any incident would subject the North to swift and vigorous retaliation. It is noteworthy that there are no significant troop movements along the 38th parallel, and the feverish tone of North Korea’s state media appears to have abated in recent days. The specific warnings that preceded the Yeonpyeong attack are now absent. The regime is well aware of North Korea’s inadequacies in the nuclear and missile technologies. Economically it is a mess. According to the CIA economic assessment issued last month, North Korea’s industrial and power output have receded to pre-1990 levels, while frequent crop failures since the catastrophic 1995 famine have produced chronic food shortages and malnutrition. Its people depend for survival on international food aid deliveries, mainly from China.
Once this latest teacup storm is over, a coherent long-term American response should address the question as to why North Korea feels it needs nuclear weapons in the first place. This is not because Kim Jong-un plans to reunify the peninsula by force—that he cannot do, with or without the bomb—but because Pyongyang regards the United States as a real threat. North Korea is one of the tightest despotisms in existence, but ever since it was designated the eastern pivot of the “Axis of Evil” in President George W. Bush’s 2002 State of the Union Address its leaders have rational grounds to feel threatened. According to President Obama, the nuclear test offered only an illusion of greater security to North Korea. This is incorrect. The possession of nuclear weapons, far from providing an “illusion” of greater security, is the only reliable insurance policy to those states that Washington may deem fit for regime change. Had Serbia had the bomb in 1999 or Iraq in 2003, they would not have been subjected to illegal American attacks on patently spurious grounds.
Some imagination is needed in Washington, including a rethink of the old orthodoxy that nuclear proliferation is inherently dangerous. It is not. Since 1945, there have been many wars, but no catastrophic ones on par with 1914-1918 or 1939-1945. This long peace—lasting for close to seven decades thus far—is due almost entirely to the existence of nuclear weapons and to their possession by an expanding circle of powers. Contrary to the will of the United States—whose leaders do not want other countries to possess what America has possessed, and used, since 1945—nuclear proliferation has been a major factor in the preservation of peace. The “Balance of Terror” is a grim term which denotes a comforting reality, and its logic applies to the lesser powers, such as India and Pakistan, which went to war three times after the Partition—in 1947, 1965, and 1971—but not since then. On previous form, the violence in Kashmir in March 2008 and the Pakistani-linked terrorist attacks in Bombay in November of that year would have reignited the conflict—but they did not. The possession of nuclear weapons by both adversaries has been a major war-inhibiting factor for over four decades, and it will likely remain so for many years to come.
What is valid for the Subcontinent should apply to the North Korean peninsula. Sanctions or no sanctions, Pyongyang will not give up its bomb. For the sake of regional peace and stability, South Korea should acquire one as well—and there is no reason for Japan not to follow suit. Back in the 1970’s, the Ford Administration induced South Korea to abandon its nuclear weapons program in return for not withdrawing American soldiers. Now is the time to reverse the sequence. Washington should grant a free nuclear hand to Seoul in return for the mutually agreed U.S. troop withdrawal. The latest crisis strengthens the case for the long-overdue withdrawal of the remaining 28,000 American troops from the Korean peninsula. It is high time to let the countries directly affected by Pyongyang’s actions—South Korea, Japan, China, and Russia—deal with North Korea themselves, to the best of their abilities.
As you read in the First Basic Law of Stupidity, our U.S. Congress works on yet another mass amnesty for 20 million illegal alien migrants now working and residing in our country in violation of dozens of our laws. Notice that Congress failed to enforce the employment laws from the 1965 Immigration Reform Law as well as the 1986 Amnesty that gave four million Mexicans instant citizenship. All totaled, those two new laws by Congress flooded this country with over 120 million more people since 1965. This next amnesty will flood the country with yet another 100 million immigrants at the bare minimum.
Today, we live in 2013 with a few other interesting facts Congress bestowed on the American people:
- Congress placed our country into a $16.5 trillion national debt. It’s wrecking the foundation of our republic and our financial ability to survive.
- Congress waged two useless, worthless and meaningless wars for the past 10 years at a cost of $3 trillion. Trillions more when it comes to the emotional, physical and psychological chaos incurred by our military veterans.
- Congress outsource, insourced and offshored millions of US jobs so we now suffer 14 million unemployed and 7 million underemployed.
- Congress killed so many jobs and job training that 47 million Americans subsist on food stamps in April of 2013.
- Congress refuses to enforce internal immigration employment, housing and transport laws—so that we face 20 million illegal aliens scamming American workers out of jobs as well as using $346 billion annually in taxpayer services like education, medical care, anchor babies, incarceration, drug distribution, shop lifting and more.
- Congress refuses to aid lawful American citizens with jobs, but it works its magic in allowing over eight million illegal aliens full time work in our country—and much of it off the books and no taxes collected, but we subsidize their children, health care and prison costs.
- Congress huddles in Washington, DC to gift another 20 million illegal aliens with instant citizenship and all the cash and welfare benefits that entails. Heritage Foundation estimates $3 to $5 trillion for the cost of this new amnesty paid for by you, the legal American taxpayer.
Which brings us to the “Second Basic Law of Stupidity” by Carlo M. Cipolla, Professor of
Economics, UC Berkeley in Whole Earth Review, Spring 1987
Cipolla said in the Second Basic Law of Stupidity, “Cultural trends now fashionable in the West favor an egalitarian approach to life. People like to think of human beings as the output of a perfectly engineered mass production machine. Geneticists and sociologists especially go out of their way to prove, with an impressive apparatus of scientific data and formulations that all men are naturally equal and if some are more equal that others, this is attributable to nurture and not to nature.
“I take an exception to this general view. It is my firm conviction, supported by years of observation and experimentation, that men are not equal, that some are stupid and others are not, and that the difference is determined by nature and not by cultural forces or factors. One is stupid in the same way one is red-haired; one belongs to the stupid set as one belongs to a blood group. A stupid man is born a stupid man by an act of Providence.”
The collective IQ of America declines below three digits. Notice that 7,000 high school kids drop out or flunk out of high school every day in America. Notice those failure rates correspond to the millions of third world immigrants imported into America. Not only does our Congress import illiteracy, it imports poverty and cultures of poverty. One look at Los Angeles today provides ample proof where a teenager cannot read the bus schedule. Unemployment screams off the charts and immigrants ride the welfare gravy train like a new art form.
“Although convinced that fractions of human beings are stupid and that they are so because of genetic traits,” said Cipolla. “I am not a reactionary trying to reintroduce surreptitiously class or race discrimination, I firmly believe stupidity is an indiscriminate privilege of all human groups and is uniformly distributed according to a constant proportion. This fact is scientifically expressed by the Second Basic Law with states that: The probability that a certain person be stupid is independent of any other characteristic of that person.”
Today in America 42 million Americans cannot read, write or perform simple math problems. Another 50 million cannot read past the 4th grade level. It will be interesting when we import the projected 100 million more immigrants from the burgeoning third world by 2050—as to what kind of a completely stupid, dumb, dysfunctional and totally illiterate civilization the majority of our citizens will have become.
The democrats and republicans will probably tell us we need more immigrants to revitalize the nation, freshen it and bring new ideas to solve all our problems.
Americans take so many mood-altering and addictive pills that water supplies are being contaminated. Just ask the fish. Do the drugs in your water pose a risk to your health—and even your sobriety?
The idea that we’re being unwittingly drugged when we drink a glass of ordinary tap water smacks of dystopian science fiction or political conspiracy theory. Accusations that Communists were spiking America’s water with sedatives—under the cover of the federally instituted fluoridation program—were such a staple of Cold War–era paranoia that Stanley Kubrick satirized it in his 1964 masterpiece, Dr. Strangelove. While such fear-mongering may seem quaint, what’s truly ironic is that Americans today are consuming prescription drugs—including addictive psychoactive ones—via the water supply. Who knew?
There’s a good chance that if you live in an urban area, your tap water is laced with tiny amounts of antidepressants (mostly SSRIs like Prozac and Effexor), benzodiazepines (like Klonopin, used to reduce symptoms of substance withdrawal) and anticonvulsants (like Topomax, used to treat addiction to alcohol, nicotine, food and even cocaine and crystal meth). Such are the implications of environmental studies that have been leaking out over the past decade. Whether or not this psychoactive waste has any effect on the human nervous system remains unclear, but when such pharmaceuticals are introduced into the ecosystem, the fallout for other species is demonstrable—and potentially dire.
There’s no mystery to the way prescription medications wind up in our tap water. Whether you flush a bottle of old pills down the toilet or, more likely, excrete the remains of a daily dose (an estimated 80% isn’t broken down in our bodies), active chemicals get recycled back into reservoirs because sewage treatment plants aren’t able to filter them out. “They just fly right through,” says Michael Thomas, an associate professor of bioinformatics at Idaho State University.
Although government officials and scientists are in no rush to look into this potential threat, some environmentalists are becoming worried. In a preliminary study at the University of Idaho, fathead minnows were plunked in water spiked with a combination of SSRIs and anticonvulsants—a lab version of American tap water. After swimming in the contaminated water for 18 days, the minnows exhibited 324 genetic alterations associated with human neurological disorders, including autism.
Mutated minnows admittedly do not signal a hazard of global-warming dimensions. Yet messed-up genes are what cause disease. Studies have shown that regular doses of SSRIs can sometimes damage human DNA, most notably in sperm. The minnows offer evidence that even trace amounts of SSRIs can infiltrate DNA. For now, the implications for humans of ongoing exposure can only be extrapolated from the effects on wildlife: According to a 2008 AP investigation, trace pharmaceuticals already contaminate a wide variety of species, from algae on up to mammals.
The peculiarities of sedative-fed perch were highlighted last month in a front- page article in The New York Times. The fish had been fed trace doses of oxazepam—a benzodiazepine commonly used in Europe—over a period of two months, as part of a Swedish study. The fish exposed to the anti-anxiety medication socialized less but ate more zooplankton and swam further, behaviors with potential long-term consequences for local ecosystems. This sparked fears among environmentalists that under the influence, the fish are more susceptible to predators, which could weaken the strength of the species. Not mentioned in the Times piece is the fact that SSRIs have been detected in plankton, which are a “foundation” organism in the food chain. “It’s inescapable,” Sudeep Chandra, an associate professor of natural resources and environmental science at the University of Nevada, told the AP. “There’s enough global information now to confirm [trace pharmaceuticals] are affecting organisms and wildlife.”
“This looks like a case of hidden mass medication upon the unsuspecting public,” a British Parliament member charged.
This drugs-in-our-drinking-water issue has remained mostly below the radar of the government, researchers and the media. The AP chalked up the lack of focus on the issue partly to government agencies’ and nonprofits’ wariness about stoking public fear. “It’s a hard topic to talk about without creating fear in the general public,”said the Water Research Foundation’s Robert Renna.
While the federal Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) mandates that other kinds of contaminants, such as pesticides and lead, be filtered out before our drinking water flows through a municipal tap, there remain no guidelines at all for pharmaceuticals, despite the fact that as far back as 2000, a US geological survey found low levels in 80% of the rivers and streams sampled. Nor is much funding available for even rudimentary studies of this potential public health problem.
The EPA does not even track the statistics collected by the few municipalities that do surveillance. In 2008, after surveying results from the municipalities that did test, the AP found over 50 pharmaceuticals that “could harm humans” in the water of 41 million Americans. Because most cities don’t test—and those that do generally refuse to release their findings, citing “security concerns” —the actual number of affected people is almost certainly much higher. “I think we have a lot of work to do,”said the EPA’s Benjamin Grumbles.
The problem is not restricted to the US. Over a hundred trace pharmaceuticals have been detected in waterways around the globe, from Pakistan to Finland. But the highest concentrations of drug pollution by far are here at home, where nearly half the population is on at least one prescribed medication. The 10% of Americans who take antidepressants (mostly SSRIs) accounted for 255 million scripts in 2010. With all that runoff, you might think Americans would be happier—and less addiction prone—than they are.
In Britain, where psychoactive drugs are prescribed at a fraction of US levels, a 2004 Environment Agency study cited “low-level, almost continuous discharge” of Prozac through the tap water there. Parliament member Norman Baker stated ominously, “This looks like a case of hidden mass medication upon the unsuspecting public.” Yet no US municipalities have done similar measurements that quantify the amount of each drug detected. It’s reasonable to assume, however, that consistent quantities of trace antidepressants flow through American taps—especially since fish collected in fresh-water bodies near several urban centers have tested positive for these contaminants.
New York City is widely believed to have the nation’s cleanest tap water, which is supplied from protected upstate reservoirs. The feds consider these reservoirs so pure that the Big Apple’s H2O is not required to be filtered. As far as is known, no official agency has tested the city’s water supply for pharmaceuticals. Yet a 2008 study by Stony Brook University found a number of sedatives and anti-depressants in upstate waterways that feed the reservoirs. A just-released study by the Citizens Campaign for the Environment found that contrary to public health guidelines, over 50% of the medical facilities in nearby Suffolk County flush their unused meds down the toilet.
Because pharmaceutical compounds make their way into the watershed itself, private wells are also affected; as for the bottled stuff, it’s no purer than most tap water because it comes from the same water sources. If prescription medications are being passed into the water supply, it follows that some illegal drugs must take the same route, although in substantially lower quantities. Sure enough, aSpanish study found cocaine in 22 of 24 random samples of that country’s tap water and an Italian study found cocaine flowing through the Po River.
The future social and ecological fallout, if any, from the drugs in our drinking water is impossible to foresee. But in the short term, within the 12-step community, the issue could have a special resonance. Many AA members believe that true sobriety requires abstinence from all mood-altering drugs, whether addictive (like benzodiazepines) or not (like antidepressants). A pamphlet issued by AA’s General Services Conference warns that it’s “generally accepted” that these meds can “threaten the maintenance of sobriety.” But given the prevalence of these substances in the water supply, it appears that you can’t even drink a glass of good, old tap water without going off the wagon. Where does that leave people who believe in a literal interpretation of the Big Book? Crossing Italy and Spain off the travel itinerary is easy enough. It may also be time, for sanity’s sake, to take another look at what “total abstinence” means.
Matt Harvey is an award-winning freelance journalist whose writing has appeared on AnimalNY.com, Black Book, the New York Post and the New York Press, among other publications. He lives in Manhattan.
Source: The Fix
Just a few months ago the total net worth of all Bitcoins, a popular encrypted digital currency, was worth about $140 million. The non-tangible exchange mechanism is used by people all over the world to purchase everything from traditional goods and services, to illicit trade that may include drugs and stolen credit card numbers. The coins became a go-to digital store of wealth around the world after the meltdown of the Cypriot financial system, and was pushed as a ‘safe’ way to preserve wealth out of view prying government eyes. All of the excitement surrounding Bitcoin has driven the price of a single unit to in excess of $250, giving the total Bitcoins in global circulation a market capitalization of over $2.5 Billion in just a few months time.
Earlier this morning, Mike Adams of Natural News penned a warning to investors and those seeking privacy and wealth protection by utilizing the digitally encrypted BitCoin currency unit:
Bitcoin has become a casino. It is almost a perfect reflection of the tulip bulb mania of 1637 in these two ways: 1) Most people buying bitcoins have no use for bitcoins (just like tulip bulbs), and 2) The rapid increase in bitcoin valuations cannot be substantiated in any way that reflects reality.
In other words, there is no fundamental reason why bitcoins should be 2000% more valuable today than four months ago. Nothing has changed other than the craze / mania of people buying in.
When bitcoins were in the sub-$20 range, I was not concerned about any of this. I actually encouraged people to buy bitcoins and support the bitcoin movement. But alarm bells went off in my mind when it skyrocketed past $150 and headed to $200+ virtually overnight. These are not the signs of rational markets. These are warning signs of bad things yet to occur. (ViaInfowars)
A few hours after Adams’ dire warning was posted, the crash he warned about has become a reality.
This morning, without warning, and moments after Bitcoin achieved its all time highs, the currency collapsed over 50%, essentially vaporizing upwards of one billion dollars in value.
This is what panic selling looks like – in real time:
(Chart Courtesy Bitcoinbullbear.com)
And given that there are no protective mechanisms for the alternative free market Bitcoin trade, the crash may not yet be over.
Will it stage an amazing recovery? Alas, for this particular bubble, there are no NYSE circuit breakers nor is there a Federal Reserve-mandated “plunge protection team.” And why should there be? The central banks hate all currency alternatives. Firehats: on, especially since the volume is still relatively lite. (Zero Hedge)
The momentum for Bitcoin has now turned to the downside, much like it did in previous crashes where the currency achieved new highs, and was promptly sold off by those who bought into the bubble early at rock-bottom prices.
While BitCoin may be a preferred method of keeping payments for services and products private through its crypto-mechanisms, it is still a non-tangible asset and it require brokers and the internet to function properly.
Touted as a safe haven store of wealth and a “gold standard of the internet age” by Forbes, tens of thousands of investors bought into the hype.
Today they are paying the price.
During times of financial and economic stability BitCoin may function just fine as a suitable mechanism of exchange. But these are not ordinary times. Interesting, yes. Stable, no. And thus, exchanging one’s assets and turning them into digital Bitcoins may not be the best choice of asset protection during periods of financial, economic and political turmoil and uncertainty.
Only physical assets – the kind we can hold in our hand – can truly be called safe havens.
Food in your pantry that you can consume at anytime.
Skills and labor you can barter for other goods.
Precious metals, which have stood the test of time over thousands of years.
Land on which you can produce food and alternative power.
These are the assets that provide a realistic level of safety and security.
These are money when the system crashes and confidence in the paper ponzi schemes around the world is lost.
Bitcoin is fine for certain types of transactions. But having funds in Bitcoin is, obviously, no different than a deposit account at a bank which can go under or a stock market prone to manipulation.
Get physical. It’s the only way to ensure your assets will really be there when you need them.
As any honest observer of the dire fiscal nature of U.S. budgets would conclude, the driving section of deficit expenditures are entitlements. The two areas, based upon predictable demographics, that scream out for rational and extensive surgery are Social Security and Medicare. The Obama administration has a long record of gutting Medicare as part of the Obama care malady that is transforming into a national plague as the detail regulations unfold. For a summary of reporting on the subject, review the media accounts on the Kaiser Health News. One of such analysis, found in the New York Times item, Obama Budget to Include Cuts to Programs in Hopes of Deal, identifies the smoke and mirrors modifications, designed to push the Medicare medical reimbursement into insolvency.
“Mr. Obama’s budget will propose a new inflation formula that would have the effect of reducing cost-of-living payments for Social Security benefits, though with financial protections for low-income and very old beneficiaries, administration officials said. The idea, known as chained C.P.I., has infuriated some Democrats and advocacy groups to Mr. Obama’s left, and they have already mobilized in opposition.
Mr. Obama will propose other spending and tax credit initiatives, including aid for states to make free prekindergarten education available nationwide — a priority outlined in his State of the Union address in February. He will propose to pay for it by raising federal taxes on cigarettes and other tobacco products.
In Medicare, the savings would mostly come from payments to health care providers, including hospitals and pharmaceutical companies, but Mr. Obama also proposes that higher-income beneficiaries pay more for coverage.”
The mere notion that the Obama administration is submitting a budget at all may be news, but the devil is in the details, within the projected outline is expected. This political kabuki theatre gives little solace to the actuary process that crunches the numbers of an aging society.
The first acknowledgment out of the lack of a grand arrangement, cited by Money News in, Obama Proposes Cuts to Social Security, Medicare, calls for reductions in the growth of Social Security and other benefit programs.
“Administration officials have said Obama would only agree to the reductions in benefit programs if they are accompanied by increases in revenue, a difficult demand given the strong anti-tax sentiment of House Republicans.”
The glaring omission from this, and any discussion on Social Security and Medicare, is the need to revise eligibility and age admission criteria. The political psyche of the public is stuck on the myth that an entitlement society can be funded on a systemic shortfall of revenue. The perennial cry for just raising taxes on the rich is a fool’s gameand does harm by continually reinforcing the denial of inevitable reality, that services and programs must be dramatically curtailed or eliminated.
Much of the partisan banter and face-off skirts this underlying issue. Feeding this self-denial culture is an electorate and a population that has become comfortable consuming their “so called” free lunch diet. The fact that the eating habits of the majority attempt to digest the social programs off the government menu, without paying for the cost of the meal is inescapable.
The longevity of recent age brackets has caused a fiscal crisis that has only one outcome, namely, national bankruptcy without fundamental changes to such programs. Impoverishment of the younger generations to fund a mathematically impossible obligation is the key element missing from any rational discussion or debate.
The central transformation of medical institutions from a proprietary return on assets system to a not for profit reimbursement corporative would allow for major reductions in the costs of medical delivery services, while enhancing patient recovery. The elimination of bureaucratic defensive medicine, driven by the practice of fear from legal litigation is absent within Obama’s budget.
The assault on holistic medicine in favor of pharmaceutical drugs is a core reason why Medicare is a failed approach to health and wellbeing. Individual Americans are walking cadavers waiting for their expected stroke or heart attack. The diet of the average consumer of fast food drives up the tolls of medical treatment and should not become a public burden upon taxpayers that strive to achieve a healthy lifestyle.
While any form of a socialistic medical payer system guarantees a reduction in the quality of medical services, the Medicare program has a large constituency and lobby influence upon legislation and administration. Only a total breakdown in health care under the Obamacare formula, might offer the slightest opportunity to revamp the entire governmental run fiasco that has an inane disconnect between treatment and the cost of the service.
Social Security has become an unfunded ponzi scheme that in unsustainable as the work force declines. Cutting the rate of growth by a recalculation of the already shaded inflation statistics is the very definition of kicking the can down the road. This time that canister might just injure your toe to the point of needing medical assistance that is certainly not covered under The Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act.Postponing a dialogue on serious entitlement reform or preferably dramatic scale back is playing with national suicide. As the country dissolves into a more democratic frenzy, the addition of millions of more illegal immigrants will add gasoline to the fiscal inferno that is already burning out of control.
Regrettably, the will for an electoral resolution through the ballot box, when the voter has an insatiable desire to live off the tax payments of others, guarantees a day of reckoning. The eugenics outcome that leads to euthanasia acceptance certainly will not be one of the cuts in the federal budget.
The long path to nationwide insanity is paved with governmental programs that claim to help citizens, while pushing the fiscal burden unto the unborn, millions upon which are aborted. Money in government is like poison to a drug addict. In this case, the junkie does not die it only spends more. Good health demands rational behavior.
Whenever discussion over North Korea arises in Western circles, it always seems to be accompanied by a strange mixture of sensationalism and indifference. The mainstream media consistently presents the communist nation as an immediate threat to U.S. national security, conjuring an endless number of hypothetical scenarios as to how they could join forces with Al-Qaeda and attack with a terroristic strategy. At the same time, the chest puffing of the late Kim Jong-iL and the standard fare of hyper-militant rhetoric on the part of the North Korean government in general seem to have lulled the American public into a trance of non-concern.
In the midst of the latest tensions with the North Koreans, I have found that most people are barely tracking developments and that, when confronted by the idea of war, they shrug it off as if it is a laughable concept. “Surely” they claim, “The North is just posturing as they always have.”
The high-focus propaganda attacking North Korea on our side and the puffer fish methodology on their side have created a social and political atmosphere surrounding our relations with the Asian nation that I believe places both sides of the Pacific in great danger. North Korea has the potential to become a trigger point for multiple economic catastrophes, and there are people in this world who would be happy to use such crises to serve their own interests.
The mainstream view being espoused by globalist-minded politicians and corporate oligarchs with an agenda is that North Korea is a nuclear armed monstrosity ready to use any subversive means necessary to strike the United States. The idea that the North is working closely with Al-Qaeda has been suggested in everything from White House briefings to cable news to movies and television. The concept of pan-global terrorist collusion and the cartoon-land “axis of evil” has been prominent in our culture since the Administration of George W. Bush. It has even been making a resurgence lately in the MSM, which presented countries like Iran, Syria And North Korea as the primary culprits interfering with the success of the U.N. Small Arms Treaty.
Of course, what remains less talked about in the mainstream is the fact that these nations refuse to adhere to the treaty because carefully placed loopholes still allow major powers like the United States to feed arms into engineered insurgencies. Why would Syria or any other targeted nation sign a treaty that restricts its own sovereign ability to trade while giving teeth to internal enemies trained and funded by foreign intelligence agencies?
The establishment brushes aside such facts and consistently admonishes these countries as the last holdouts standing in the way of a new world order, a worldwide socioeconomic cooperative and pseudo-Utopia. The path to this wonderful global village is always presented as a battle against stubborn isolationists, non-progressives who lack vision and cling desperately to the archaic past. The values of personal and national sovereignty are painted as outdated, decrepit and even threatening to the newly born world structure. The image of North Korea is used by globalists as a kind of straw man argument against sovereignty. North Koreans’ vices and imbalances as a culture are many; but this is due in far larger part to their communist insanity, rather than any values of national independence. It is their domestic hive-mind collectivism we should disdain, not their wish to maintain a comfortable distance as a society from the global game.
As far as being an imminent physical threat to the United States, it really depends on the scenario. The North Koreans have almost no logistical capability to support an invasion of any kind. The nation has been suffering from epidemic famine for well more than a decade.
To initiate a war outright has never been in the best interests of the North Koreans, simply because their domestic infrastructure would not be able to handle the strain. However, there is indeed a scenario in which North Korea could be influenced to use military force despite apprehension.
With the ever looming threat of famine comes the ever looming threat of citizen revolution. When any government is faced with the possibility of being supplanted, it will almost always lash out viciously in order to maintain power and control, no matter the cost. Sanctions like those being implemented by the West against North Korea today, at the very edge of national famine, could destabilize the country entirely. I believe the North would do anything to avoid an internal insurgency scenario, including attacking South Korea to acquire food stores and energy reserves, as well as other tangible modes of wealth.
North Korea’s standing army, obtained through mandatory two year conscription, is estimated at about 1.1 million active personnel; very close to the numbers active in the U.S. armed forces. But North Korean reserves are estimated at more than 8 million, compared to only 800,000 in the United States. If made desperate by economic sanctions, the North Koreans could field a massive army that would wreak havoc in the South and be very difficult to root out on their home turf. Asian cultures have centuries of experience using asymmetric warfare (the kryptonite of the U.S. military), and I do not believe it is wise to take such a possible conflict lightly, as many Americans seem to do. It is easy to forget that the last Korean War did not work out so well for us. At best, we would be mired in on-ground operations for years (just like Iraq and Afghanistan) or perhaps even decades. Like North Korea, we also do not have the logistical economic means to enter into another such war.
The skeptics argue that we will never get to this point, though, because North Korea has brandished and blustered many times before, all resulting in nothing. I see recent events being far different and more urgent than in the past, and here’s why:
1) The West needs to realize that North Korea is under new leadership. The blowhard days of Kim Jung Il are over, and little is known about his son, Kim Jong Un. So far, the young dictator has followed through on everything he said he would do, including the multiple nuclear tests that the West is using as an excuse to exert sanctions. To assume that the son will be exactly like the father is folly.
2) Many people claimed that North Korean threats to abandon the Armistice in place since 1953 were empty, yet they dropped it exactly as they said they would at the beginning of March.
3) The North has begun cutting off direct communication channels to the South, including a cross-border hotline meant to help alleviate tensions through diplomatic means.
4) The North has officially declared a state of war against the South. This has been called mere “tough talk” by the U.S. government, but the speed at which these multiple developments have occurred should be taken into consideration.
5) North Korea has just announced the reopening of a shuttered nuclear reactor used to render weapons grade materials.
6) The DPRK has suddenly locked down the Kaesong Industrial Zone; a region which holds manufacturing centers for both North and South Korea. Southern manufacturers operating there employ nearly 50,000 Northern workers. Nearly 1000 Southerners also work there. The arrangement generates approximately $2 billion a year for the North. The joint industrial zone has existed since 2000, and the North has never locked down access until this past week. The fact that the DPRK is willing to restrict this area and possibly lose a sizable income signals that the situation is not as “mild” as some would like to believe.
7) At the beginning of this year, silver purchases by the North from China surged. For the entire year of 2012, the government purchased $77,000 worth of precious metals. In the first few months of 2013, North Korea has already purchased $600,000 in silver. The exact size of the North’s precious metals stockpile is unknown. Though seemingly small in comparison to many purported metal holdings by major powers, this sudden investment expansion would indicate a government move to protect internal finances from an exceedingly frail economic environment. Metals are also historically accumulated at a high rate by nations preparing for war or invasionin the near term.
Again, all that is needed to instigate an event on the Korean Peninsula are tightened sanctions. The establishment knows this, though another Gulf of Tonkin incident (an openly admitted false flag event) may be on the menu as well.
Given that the chances of a shooting war are high if sanctions continue, it might be wise to consider the consequences of conflagration in Korea.
Dealing with a large army steeped in asymmetric and mountain warfare will be difficult enough. In fact, an invasion of North Korea would be far more deadly than Afghanistan, if only because of the sheer number of maneuver elements (guerilla-style units) on the ground. But let’s set aside North Korea for a moment and consider the greatest threat of all: dollar collapse.
As I have discussed in numerous articles, China, the largest foreign holder of U.S. debt, has positioned itself to decouple from the American consumer and the dollar. This is no longer a theoretical process as it was in 2008, but a very real and nearly completed one. Mainstream analysts often claim China would never break from the dollar because it would damage their export markets and their investment holdings. The problem is, China is already dumping the dollar using bilateral trade agreements with numerous developing nations, Australia being the latest to abandon the greenback.
China isn’t just talking about it; China is doing it.
The development of a decoupled China is part of a larger push by international banks to remove the dollar as the world reserve currency and replace it with a new global currency. This currency already exists. The International Monetary Fund’s Special Drawing Rights (SDR) is a mechanism backed by a basket of currencies as well as gold. The introduction of the SDR on a wide scale is dependent on only two things:
First, China has been designated the replacement consumer engine in the wake of a U.S. collapse. They have already surpassed the United States as the No. 1 trading power in the world. However, they must spread their own currency, the Yuan, throughout global markets in order to aid the IMF in removing the dollar. China has recently announced a program to sell more than $6 trillion in Yuan denominated bonds to foreign investors, easily fulfilling this need.
Second, China and the IMF need a scapegoat event, a rationale for dumping the dollar that the masses would accept as logical. A U.S. invasion of North Korea could easily offer that rationale.
While China has been playing the good Samaritan in relations with the United States in dealing with North Korea and has supported (at least on paper) certain measures including sanctions, China will never be in support of Western combat actions in the Pacific so close to their territory. The kind of U.S. or NATO presence a war with North Korea would generate would be entirely unacceptable to the Chinese, who do not need to respond using arms. Rather, all they have to do to get rid of us would be to fully dump the dollar and threaten to cut off trade relations with any other country that won’t do the same. The domino effect would be devastating, causing U.S. costs to skyrocket and forcing us to pull troops out of the region. At the same time, the dollar would be labeled a “casualty of war” rather than a casualty of conspiratorial global banking designs, and the financial elites would be removed from blame.
Ultimately, we should take the North Korean situation seriously not because of the wild-eyed propaganda of the mainstream media and not because they are “doing business with terrorists” or because they are a “violent and barbaric relic of nationalism,” but because a war in North Korea serves the more malicious interests of globalization. No matter what happens in the near future, it is important for Americans to always question the true motives behind any event and ask ourselves who, in the end, truly benefited.
Source: Brandon Smith | Alt-Market
If you watched NBC’s anchor Lester Holt on Saturday evening’s news, he reported that Portland State University in Portland, Oregon, features a “food pantry” for students who cannot afford to feed themselves while attending college. Further into the report, Holt announced that 50 colleges across the United States feature “food pantries” that give donated food stuffs out to destitute college students barely able to make their way through college.
The whole report sickened me. NBC’s Brian Williams last week reported that this month is the 10 year anniversary of invading Iraq with “Shock and Awe” from former President George W. Bush. We suffered 4,750 dead young men and women, 32,000 hideously wounded and $2 trillion in expenditures. Brian also announced that no “Weapons of Mass Destruction” existed in Iraq. We also killed over 150,000 Iraqi citizens.
As I sat there in my chair watching the news, I felt an overwhelming disgusting feeling that a band of 535 lunatics and one lunatic former president and the present incompetent president lack any ability to deal with reality and create solutions that solve American’s problems.
No one in his right mind would invade a sandbox country run by an idiot dictator over 10,000 miles away. Iraq posed no threat whatsoever to our country.
Yet, we feed 47.7 million Americans with food stamps because those individuals cannot find a job or are too illiterate to hold a job. We suffer 14 million unemployed Americans looking for work. Our infrastructure and bridges crumble right before our eyes. We stand eye-ball deep in $16.5 trillion in debt. Our educational systems spit out functionally illiterate and welfare-dependent kids by the hundreds of thousands every year.
A mind-numbing 13.4 million American children live below the poverty level in conditions that sicken any middle-American. Some one million Americans remain homeless night after night in the city streets of America. One in six Americans face hunger. www.feedingAmerica.org “In many ways, America is the land of plenty. But for 1 in 6 people in the United States, hunger is a reality. Many people believe that the problems associated with hunger are confined to small pockets of society, certain areas of the country, or certain neighborhoods, but the reality is much different. Right now, millions of Americans are struggling with hunger. These are often hard-working adults, children and seniors who simply cannot make ends meet and are forced to go without food for several meals, or even days.”
Yet, our Congress just gave Egypt $250 million dollars in aid this month. We send billions of dollars that we borrow from other countries to give to dozens of countries around the world in foreign aid. Yet, our own country rides on the thin margins of pretention.
That same Congress imports 100,000 legal, unskilled, undereducated, welfare-prone, food stamp and assisted housing recipients every 30 days into America. Those same immigrants along with illegals cost American taxpayers $346 billion annually across 15 federal agencies. (Source: Edwin Rubenstein, ESR, www.TheSocialContract.com )
It’s so beyond the realm of stupidity that it morphs into the realm of insanity—but Congress carries out this level of insanity as a normal method of day to day business.
We flounder at saving ourselves on the margins of our national debt by waiting until the last minute to pass a bill to raise the debt ceiling. Yet, we never solve the debt problem at the cause. We continue with endless wars that cost us trillions of dollars, but we march right into new wars that provide no security or freedom—but plenty of death and debt. Our children suffer with educational systems bankrupting, but we add more to our military budgets where we must train poorly educated citizen soldiers.
We stagger into the future without a plan. Specifically, President Barack Obama staggers forward without a plan and our Congress waltzes into the financial and social abyss with him.
The American people become victims of our leaders’ incompetence, their corruption and their outright greed. For those 535 Congress critters to continue their pretenses of leading this country, it’s appalling that they can sleep at night knowing they fail us and fail us utterly.
One reader said, “Your latest article regarding immigration expresses what I’ve been saying for years. Neither Bush nor Obama care about securing the borders. All the talk about creating jobs is smoke and mirrors and rhetoric. Congress is still allowing 100,000 people to come here legally each month. How can we possibly put Americans to work at this rate? Looking at the whole picture, I firmly believe our country is finished, and it’s not going to return to what it was when we were younger. We will not out-vote those whose gave Obama a second term. He is bent on destroying our way of life, and succeeding. Morality and a belief in our Creator have been severely weakened. The U.S.A. is controlled by a despotic president, and parasites in Congress.”