USA Military Officers Challenge Official Account of September 11
22 May 2008
Twenty-five former U.S. military officers have severely criticized the official account of 9/11 and called for a new investigation. They include former commander of U.S. Army Intelligence, Major General Albert Stubblebine, former Deputy Assistant Secretary of Defense, Col. Ronald D. Ray, two former staff members of the Director of the National Security Agency; Lt. Col. Karen Kwiatkowski, PhD, and Major John M. Newman, PhD, and many others. “A lot of these pieces of information, taken together, prove that the official story, the official conspiracy theory of 9/11 is a bunch of hogwash. It’s impossible,” said Lt. Col. Robert Bowman, PhD, U.S. Air Force (ret). With doctoral degrees in Aeronautics and Nuclear Engineering, Col. Bowman served as Director of Advanced Space Programs Development under Presidents Gerald Ford and Jimmy Carter.
From: CLG News
Why the Bush Administration “Watergated” Eliot Spitzer
by F. William Engdahl
Global Research, March 18, 2008
The spectacular and highly bizarre release of secret FBI wiretap data to the New York Times exposing the tryst of New York state Governor, Eliot Spitzer, the now-infamous “No.9,” with a luxury call-girl, had less to do with the Bush Administration’s pursuit of high moral standards for public servants. Spitzer was likely the target of a White House and Wall Street dirty tricks operation to silence one of its most dangerous and vocal critics of their handling the current financial market crisis.
A useful rule of thumb in evaluating spectacular scandals around prominent public figures is to ask what and who might want to eliminate that person. In the case of Governor Eliot Spitzer, a Democrat, it is clear that the spectacular “leak” of government FBI wiretap records showing that Spitzer paid a high-cost prostitute $4,300 for what amounted to about an hour’s personal entertainment, was politically motivated. The press has almost solely focused on the salacious aspects of the affair, not least the hefty fee Spitzer apparently paid. Why the scandal breaks now is the more interesting question.
Spitzer became Governor of New York following a high-profile record as a relentless State Attorney General going after financial crimes such as the Enron fraud and corruption by Wall Street investment banks during the 2002 dot.com bubble era. The powerful former head of the large AIG insurance group, Hank Greenburg was among his detractors. He made powerful enemies by all accounts. He was bitterly hated on Wall Street. He had made his political career on being ruthless against financial corruption. Most recently, from his position as Governor of the nation’s second largest state, and home to its financial industry, Spitzer had begun making high profile attacks on the complicity of the Bush Administration in covertly arranging bailout if its Wall Street financial friends at the expense of ordinary homeowners and citizens, paid all with taxpayer funds.
Curiously, Spitzer, who had been elected governor in 2006 defeating a Republican by winning nearly 70 percent of the vote, has been not charged in any crime. However, the day the scandal broke New York Assembly Republicans immediately announced plans to impeach Spitzer or put him on public trial were he to refuse resignation. Spitzer could be asked to testify in any trial involving the Emperors Club prostitution ring. But so far he hasn’t been charged with a crime. Prostitution is illegal in most US states, but clients of prostitutes are almost never charged, nor are their names usually leaked in a case in process. The Spitzer case is in the hands of Washington and not state authorities, underscoring the clear political nature of the Spitzer “Watergate.”
The New York Times said Spitzer was an individual identified as Client 9 in court papers filed last week. Client 9 arranged to meet with “Kristen,” a prostitute who officially charged $1,000 an hour, on February 13 in a Washington hotel. Whatever transpired, Spitzer paid her $4,300, according to the official documents. The case is clearly political when compared with more egregious recent cases involving Republicans. Republican Mark Foley was exposed propositioning male interns in Congress and Rudolph Giuliani was discovered cheating on his wife, but no or few Republican calls for resignations were heard.
Why the attack now?
Complete article at:
F. William Engdahl is the author of Seeds of Destruction, the Hidden Agenda of Genetic Manipulation recently released by Global Research. He also the author of A Century of War: Anglo-American Oil Politics and the New World Order, Pluto Press Ltd.. To contact by e-mail: firstname.lastname@example.org.
William Engdahl is a Research Associate of the Centre for Research on Globalization (CRG). His writings can be consulted on www.engdahl.oilgeopolitics.net and on Global Research.
U.S. Economy: The Worst is Yet to Come
By Mark Weisbrot
This op-ed was distributed by McClatchy-Tribune Information Services on May 23, 2008, and published in The Charlotte Observer and various other newspapers.
Since the U.S. economy showed positive growth for the last quarter, some commentators in the business press are saying that we are not necessarily going to have a recession, or that if there is one it will be mild. This is a bit like the proverbial story of the man who jumped out of a window 60 floors up, and then said “so far, so good,” as he passed the 30th floor.
The United States accumulated a massive, $8 trillion housing bubble during the decade from 1996-2006. Only about 40 percent of that bubble has now deflated. House prices are still falling at a 20 percent annual rate (over the last quarter). This means that the worst is yet to come, including another wave of mortgage defaults and write-downs. Even homeowners who are not in trouble will borrow increasingly less against their homes, reducing their spending.
President Bush says we are not in a recession. One commonly-used definition of a recession is two consecutive quarters of declining output (GDP). The first quarter of 2008 came in at 0.6 percent, although it would have been negative if not for inventory accumulation. So by this definition we cannot say with certainty that the recession has started, although it could well have started this quarter. Of course, for most Americans it has felt like a recession hit some time ago, with real wages flat since the end of 2002, and household income not growing for most of the six-and-a-half year economic expansion.
The National Bureau of Economic Research will eventually decide on the official onset of the recession, but even its definition is arbitrary. All the indicators of a serious recession are swirling around us. The economy has lost jobs for four months in a row, which has never happened without a recession. Consumer confidence has dropped to a 28 year low – a level not seen since Jimmy Carter was president. Home foreclosure filings are up 65 percent over last year. And now commercial real estate prices are heading south, dropping 6.2 percent in the first quarter.
With oil prices hitting record highs, and the Fed beginning to worry more about inflation, more restrictive lending practices and other fallout from the credit crunch, the near-term economic future looks even dimmer.
Complete article at:
Center for Economic and Policy Research www.cepr.net
Mark Weisbrot is Co-Director of the Center for Economic and Policy Research, in Washington, D.C.
ENRON AND UBS LOBBYIST IS MCCAIN’S ECONOMIC ADVISOR
By Christy Hardin Smith, Firedoglake
More shady lobbyist connections on the straight talk express.
CFTC Announces Multiple Energy Market Initiatives News release:
“The U.S. Commodity Futures Trading Commission (CFTC or Commission) today announced a number of initiatives to increase transparency of the energy futures markets. The measures will expand the amount and quality of information received from energy traders to further the integrity and oversight of our nation’s futures markets. The recent dramatic increases in the price of crude oil traded on futures exchanges make these efforts paramount. The implementation of today’s measures will improve oversight of the energy futures markets to ensure they reflect fundamental economic forces of supply and demand, free of manipulation and fraud.”
Oil prices to be probed by US regulator CFTC
By James Quinn, Wall Street Correspondent
America’s leading commodities regulator has launched an unprecedented investigation into possible market manipulation in the US crude oil market amid record prices which continue to cripple various parts of the global economy.
The Commodities Future Trading Commission (CFTC), working closely with other international regulators including the Financial Services Authority in the UK, has begun a series of detailed inquiries over concerns that energy speculators are behind the rising oil price.
In a detailed statement, the CFTC admitted for the first time that it began its investigation in December, taking what it called the “extraordinary step” of disclosing the probe “because of today’s unprecedented market conditions”.
The CFTC declined to discuss the specifics of the investigation, but stressed that all of its enforcement inquiries were focused on “ensuring that the markets are properly policed for manipulation and abusive practices”.
Walt Lukken, acting chairman of the CFTC, admitted: “In addition to the CFTC’s ongoing examination of the role of fundamental economic forces and new investors in the recent commodity market price increases, the agency continues to pursue one of its primary missions – to deter, detect and punish futures market manipulation.”
The development adds fuel to the view that the recent surge in oil prices – which hit record highs of $135.14 a barrel last week – has been largely the work of speculators in the energy markets rather than any actual increase in demand.
Complete article at:
CNN’s Yellin: Network execs killed critical White House stories
29 May 2008
On Wednesday night, CNN’s Jessica Yellin talked to Anderson Cooper about Scott McClellan’s tell-all memoir and agreed with the former press secretary that White House reporters “dropped the ball” during the run-up to war. But Yellin went much further, revealing that news executives — presumably at ABC News, where she’d worked from July 2003 to August 2007 — actively pushed her not do hard-hitting pieces on the Bush administration. “The press corps was under enormous pressure from corporate executives, frankly, to make sure that this was a war presented in a way that was consistent with the patriotic fever in the nation and the president’s [sic] high approval ratings,” Yellin said.
From: CLG News
Critical Voices on Scott McClellan
VINCENT BUGLIOSI, via David Kass, email@example.com,
Bugliosi is a former prosecutor who successfully prosecuted 21 murder convictions without a single loss. His previous best-selling books include “Helter Skelter” about the Charles Manson case, which he successfully prosecuted.
He has authored the just-released “The Prosecution of George W. Bush for Murder.” Bugliosi said today: “I have not had an opportunity to read Mr. McClellan’s book, but I read a quote from it in the New York Times in which McClellan says ‘Iraq was a series of strategic blunders.’ If this is his position, he and I couldn’t be further apart. A blunder is a mistake. Mistakes are by definition innocent and never criminal. In my book I present incontrovertible evidence that George W. Bush knowingly and deliberately took this nation to war on a lie, under false pretenses, and is therefore guilty of murder. So my position is diametrically opposed to Mr. McClellan’s.
“In taking us to war in Iraq, not only were George Bush’s allegation that Saddam Hussein was an imminent threat to the security of this country and his unmistakable allegation by implication that Hussein was involved in 9/11, false, but also and much more importantly, Bush knew that both allegations were untrue.
“In his first nationally televised address on the Iraqi crisis on October 7, 2002, President Bush told millions of unsuspecting Americans the exact opposite of what the CIA and 15 other U.S. intelligence agencies had told him on October 1, just six days earlier, in a top-secret, classified report — that Hussein was not an imminent threat to this country and would only use force against us if he feared he was in imminent danger of an attack on him by us. This was a monumental lie
by Bush to the nation and the world.”
From: Institute for Public Accuracy
Is Bush Becoming Irrelevant?
by Patrick J. Buchanan
After losing both houses of Congress in the 1994 election, Bill Clinton expostulated: The president of the United States is not irrelevant!
On learning his trusted aide from Texas Scott McClellan has denounced as an “unnecessary war” the same Iraq war McClellan defended from the White House podium, George Bush must feel as Clinton did.
The synchronized savagery of the attacks on McClellan as turncoat suggests he drew blood. For what he has done is offer confirmation to the president’s war critics, from within the White House inner circle, that Bush’s motive in going to war was not a clear and present danger of attack by Iraq with weapons of mass destruction, but to advance a Bush crusade to impose democracy on the Middle East.
Neoconservative ideology, not U.S. national interests, McClellan is saying, motivated Bush to launch one of the longest and most divisive wars in U.S. history.
When loyalists defect and seek to profit from that defection, it is usually a sign of a failing presidency. And, indeed, events suggest that history is passing Bush by.
Complete article at:
Mr. Buchanan is a nationally syndicated columnist and author of “The Death of the West,” “The Great Betrayal,” “A Republic, Not an Empire” and “Where the Right Went Wrong.”
And now for the important news ….
By Argus Hamilton
St. Paul’s minor league baseball team announced it will give Larry Craig Bobble-Foot Dolls to fans next week, with doll-sized toilet stalls sold separately. That’s just not right. It’s the senators that are for sale, the toilets have always been free.
three thousand words
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Steve Benson: … his choice for vice-president
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