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Thomas Paine

To argue with a person who has renounced the use of reason is like administering medicine to the dead.

Saturday, July 18, 2009

War Breaks Infrastructure - as does neglect

The Heathlander

The BBC’s report on the ‘Breaking the Silence’ testimonies of IDF soldiers describing the commission of serious war crimes during Operation Cast Lead is pretty representative of its output on the topic: there’s nothing outrageous, but there is nonetheless a systematic bias that underplays or ignores the most serious accusations levelled against Israel, juxtaposes Palestinian and Israeli claims without citing other credible sources (which typically overwhelmingly support the Palestinian case), and presents Israeli claims without serious challenge.

Israel needs the truth about Cast Lead

Earlier this week, Breaking the Silence, an organisation of Israeli veterans, released a book of soldiers' testimonies from the Cast Lead operation in the Gaza Strip. The public debate that this publication has provoked in Israel and that Dan Kosky is attempting to stir in his Guardian piece revolves around the methodology Breaking the Silence employed in collecting the data. The actual issues that arise in the testimonies – ammunition and rules of engagement, policy on house demolitions, treatment of civilian population, the tactics that were used – are neither explicitly denied nor confirmed. Instead, the army's spokesman decided to cast the testimonies as utterly unreliable, thereby avoiding the need to address their content.

Only the guilty turn their eyes away from their actions while filling the air with cries of their innocence.

Israel planned (plans?) to assassinate Ahmadinejad

Tehran's top intelligence official. 

Intelligence Minster Gholam-Hossein Mohseni-Eje'i said Israeli officials met with the terrorist Mujahedin-e-Khalq Organization (MKO) to execute the plan, according to a report by the semi official Fars News Agency. 

"The Zionist regime had met with the MKO on the sidelines of the Sharm el-Sheikh meeting in Egypt and in Paris to assassinate Mr. Ahmadinejad,"
The group is especially notorious for the help it extended to former dictator Saddam Hussein during the war Iraq imposed on Iran (1980-1988) and even aided him in the massacre of thousands of innocent Iraqis.

The Canadian Parliamentary Coalition to Combat Antisemitism

as Farber noted in his column "the rise of new forms of anti-Semitism" such as "the linkage of anti-Zionism and anti-Semitism", he informs us, apparently without irony or noticing the significance himself (italics mine):

"The U.K. Community Security Trust (CST), which co-hosted the London conference, has developed one of the leading evidentiary methodologies for tracking and understanding anti-Semitic incidents. Last week, it noted that a decrease in anti-Semitic incidents in 2008 (for the second year running) was totally overshadowed by an unprecedented rise during and after the Gaza operations."
Odd coincidence, that.
You know, if some of you guys would knock off conflating criticism of Israel's carnage in Gaza with anti-Semitism yourselves,.... it would go some distance towards striking a blow against the actual anti-Semitism that really does need combating.

4 Years After TJX Hack, Payment Industry Sets Security Standards

Four years after hackers breached TJX’s unsecured wireless network and stole information on more than 94 million customers, a standards body for the payment-card industry has finally released guidelines for securing wireless networks.

Iraq Restricts U.S. Forces

In a curt missive issued by the Baghdad Operations Command on July 2 -- the day after Iraqis celebrated the withdrawal of U.S. troops to bases outside city centers -- Iraq's top commanders told their U.S. counterparts to "stop all joint patrols" in Baghdad. It said U.S. resupply convoys could travel only at night and ordered the Americans to "notify us immediately of any violations of the agreement."

No Bernie Madoff for the Most Vulnerable to Blame

In a time of recession, who is looking out for the poorest U.S. citizens?

In a story, by Erik Eckholm, we learn Obama’s stimulus package has softened the impact of recession on many of the working poor; but the neediest have become more destitute. Estimates of those lacking homes, jobs, and all basic support range as high as 3.5 million.

“officials at Hollywood Presbyterian Medical Center, Kaiser Permanente West Los Angeles and Martin Luther King Jr./Drew Medical Center had discharged patients, put them in cabs and dumped them on skid row.”

Since last November, homelessness has increased in California while the state continued to reduce benefits and services to the poor. In May, Ms. A, a sixty-year-old African American woman complained to her health care worker that she received $154 less on her monthly disability check -- leaving her $436 a month. Her rent is $300. She began “working the streets” at age 12. Her godmother eventually took her in and she finished high school, married, had children and worked at a series of unskilled jobs. Then, eight years ago, her boyfriend set her on fire in a fit of pique, leaving her unable to work.

“What was I supposed to do when a woman calls me at home and says she’s his wife? He admits it and I tell him to leave and he gets mad, you know, and he drugged me and while I was passed out he poured lighter fluid on me and lit me. Now that shit will wake you up.”
The people who lost millions or hundreds of thousands speculating with Madoff have generated media attention, which they would not have done if they had lost their money in a Vegas casino. The truly poor remain marginal in all arenas of consciousness. We see them on downtown streets, begging, talking to themselves, sleeping, or just staring into space.

Tax cuts — the mantra of the right wing — means less money for public services. It also means more homeless, jobless, and hopeless people.

Funny how few Members of Congress even hesitate before voting $800 billion for a war system — excuse me, defense, that doesn’t defend us — and hopeless far away wars. The wretched of our country, however, don’t merit even much newspaper sympathy — compared to those swindled by the iniquitous Madoff.

Look Out, Are You About to Join the White Underclass?

 For all practical purposes and to most Americans, regardless of race, the term "middle class" means "white." Plain and simple.

Another way we define underclass is as "losers." People who cannot talk, think, or act like middle class professional and managerial workers, people who cannot even be posers.

VIDEO: The 1976 Swine Flu Pandemic and Vaccine

Government Propaganda Causes Many Deaths. Transcript of CBS 60 minutes

Below is the full transcript of the 1976 broadcast from the CBS investigative news program 60 Minutes on government propaganda around the 1976 swine flu scare.The program was aired on Sunday, November 4, 1979. Only one person was killed by the actual flu, while hundreds filed claims of death of their loved ones from the massive vaccine campaign which was mounted. 

How Dennis Kucinich May Save the Health Reform Battle

 Fails some of the basic criteria that most progressives have long said is a red-line that can't be crossed. First and foremost, it doesn't have a public option that can compete with private insurers and result in significant cost savings. 

 A public insurance plan for which 10 million are eligible to enroll.

 An amendment he authored was added to the House bill that allows states to create their own single-payer systems instead of adopting the federally-run exchange system.

Why Obama's Health Care Reform Bill Will Destroy U.S. Jobs and Devastate the Economy

You'll have to pay an additional eight percent of your payroll as a new tax to cover the costs of Big Government running its new sick-care system where nobody gets healthy, but everybody gets hammered with new taxes.

As a small business owner myself, I can tell you what this will cause in America: A massive shift of jobs out of the U.S. to other countries where health care costs are more reasonable (and the workers are healthier).

Taiwan, for example, is able to provide very high quality health care services to its entire population for roughly $30 a month, and that covers everything: Prenatal care, dental care, vision, surgeries, routine checkups, and so on. No one is denied coverage.
 Its government does not kow-tow to the pharmaceutical crooks that dominate American medicine. Taiwan runs a single payer system with no insurance companies mucking around with the paperwork or denying coverage to patients. On top of that, its population is far healthier than the U.S. population due to the fact that the traditional Taiwan diet is rich with real foods rather than processed foods.

America, on the other hand, runs a disastrously inefficient health care quagmire. The drug companies are paid monopoly prices on their drugs (enforced by the hopelessly corrupt FDA and FTC), doctors and hospitals are paid ridiculously high fees for services that cost a fraction of the price in other countries, the medical malpractice insurance companies collect a huge premium on everything (driving medical service costs ever higher), and the health insurance companies collect their profits on top of the whole cesspool, employing a literal army of paper pushers who sit in busy rooms, thinking of clever ways to deny payment to health care providers who have spent countless hours attempting to comply with complex billing rules.

Use Natural Therapies for Gout

Avoiding excess alcohol consumption, restriction of high purine foods like meat, kidney, sardines and liver, and avoiding drugs which increase blood uric acid such as diuretics are recommended.


Eating a well balanced diet is very important. Eating more fresh vegetables and fruits and whole grain foods is recommended. Cherries are recommended for gout sufferers as some studies show that eating cherries may help in decreasing the uric acid level. Eating vitamin C-enriched foods such as oranges and guava is helpful. Drinking plenty of pure water is a helpful way to excrete uric acid. Drinking coffee decreases uric acid level in blood, but its benefits for gout sufferers are not yet proved.

( ! Doesn't the law heavily penalize the exercising of 'common sense' ? )

The Mothers Act Disease Mongering Campaign - Part I

The Mothers Act represents the ultimate example of disease mongering at its worst because the eight-year attempt to pass this federal legislation has evolved into profiteering never before exhibited so conspicuously.

Disease mongering "is the selling of sickness that widens the boundaries of illness and grows the markets for those who sell and deliver treatments,"

Todd Staples Campaigning On Food Safety…Really?

First, there was the tomato salmonella outbreak:

Then, there was the jalapeno salmonella outbreak:

And more toxic peppers:

Less than a year later, the agriculture products scare of the decade centered on Texas:

Tests show products at a Peanut Corporation of America subsidiary in Texas may be tainted with salmonella, state health authorities said on Tuesday.Staples’ DOA certified the plant for its organic registry but didn’t bother to alert the Texas Department of Health that the facility was operating without proper permits or inspection.

Staples was running a fleet of inspectors that were evidently asleep at the wheel.

Agriculture Commissioner Todd Staples announced recently that the Texas Department of Agriculture had allocated $92,000 to create the Food Safety Good Agricultural Practices Program, to be implemented under the guidance of AgriLife Extension.

$92,000 seems a bit of a band-aid given the circumstances.

U.S. pigs and farmers carry MRSA but federal food safety agencies are 
doing little to see if the pork is safe

It's official now. Many of the pigs and the farmers who raise them in Iowa
and Illinois have MRSA.
Smith's final study was published on PLoS ONE, an online journal
for peer-reviewed scientific and medical research.

So I called some disease detectives and food safety specialists in agencies
responsible for ensuring that our food supply is safe. You could almost hear
them cringe over the phone. And, no, to the best of their knowledge, neither
the FDA, USDA nor CDC had launched systematic testing of the U.S. meat
supply for MRSA. One physician said that a study was being done on the MRSA
strain (ST398) that Smith had found on the pigs but added, "I don't think it
has anything to do with meat."
A national survey of meat products should be conducted and other animals like beef, poultry, lamb and goat should also be checked out for MRSA.


It is amazing how Biosolids and Reclaimed water neutralizes all hazardous substances and 
pathogens when they are used on grazing lands, food crops, parks, school grounds, home lawns 
and gardens or in drinking water. Aren't people lucky food and water doesn't come out of a 
laboratory or industrial facility where all this stuff could kill them ?

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