SchwartzReport: 25% US Citizens Support Secession & Break-Up of USA + Meta-RECAP

Stephan A. Schwartz

Stephan A. Schwartz

Twenty five per cent of Americans are open to secession and the break up of the United States. To this add that better than 3 out of 4 Americans are unhappy. And that 64 per cent can’t even name the three branches of government. This is a country in crisis.

Angry With Washington, 1 in 4 Americans Open to Secession
Reuters/The Raw Story

The failed Scottish vote to pull out from the United Kingdom stirred secessionist hopes for some in the United States, where almost a quarter of people are open to their states leaving the union, a new Reuters/Ipsos poll found.

Some 23.9 percent of Americans polled from Aug. 23 through Sept. 16 said they strongly supported or tended to support the idea of their state breaking away, while 53.3 percent of the 8,952 respondents strongly opposed or tended to oppose the notion.

The urge to sever ties with Washington cuts across party lines and regions, though Republicans and residents of rural Western states are generally warmer to the idea than Democrats and Northeasterners, according to the poll.

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Sep 20

Yoda: US Constitution Now an App

Got Crowd? BE the Force!

Got Crowd? BE the Force!

The Washington Times launches U.S. Constitution app for smartphones, tablets

The Washington Times on Wednesday launched a smartphone and tablet app celebrating the U.S. Constitution and other important founding documents as part of a nationwide project to empower schools, parents and community leaders to teach constitutional literacy to the newest generation of Americans.

The Washington Times’ Pocket Constitution App, developed in partnership with the nonprofit Essentials in Education, is debuting on the 10th anniversary of Constitution Day, a national holiday created through the efforts of Sen. Robert C. Byrd, West Virginia Democrat, and signed into law by President George W. Bush.

Read full article.

See Especially:

Review: Liberty Defined–50 Essential Issues That Affect Our Freedom

Review: The Thirteen American Arguments–Enduring Debates That Define and Inspire Our Country

See Also:

Worth a Look: Book Reviews on Democracy Lost & Found

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Sep 17

Patrick Cockburn: Letter from Arabia — ISIS is the Lesser of All Evils — And Most Certainly Less Evil Than an Invading Occupying USA…

Patrick Cockburn

Patrick Cockburn

The Impossible War

Isis cannot be beaten as long as there is civil war in Syria

BY PATRICK COCKBURN

CounterPunch • SEPTEMBER 11, 2014

A letter printed at the bottom of this article was emailed by a friend soon after her neighbourhood in Mosul was hit by Iraqi airforce bombers. This was some hours before President Barack Obama explained his plan to weaken and ultimately destroy Isis, which calls itself Islamic State, by a series of measures including air attacks. The letter illustrates graphically one of the most important reasons why American air power may be less effective than many imagine.

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Sep 15

SchwartzReport: Syngenta Akss EPA to Raise Tolerance Level for Bee Killing Chemical by 400X — Evil, Shameless, Greedy — and the EPA Might be Corrupt Enough to Agree to Kill Remaining Bees

Stephan A. Schwartz

Stephan A. Schwartz

This is the latest in the bee crisis. It is so shameless and greedy it is breath-taking. Monsanto, Syngenta. These are evil corporations.

Please contact the EPA and let them know you are opposed to this. The decision will directly affect your life.

Syngenta Asks EPA to Raise Tolerance Level for ‘Bee-killing’ Chemical
TIFFANY STECKER – E & E Publishing

Seed and crop management company Syngenta Crop Protection LLC has petitioned U.S. EPA to increase the legal tolerance for a neonicotinoid pesticide residue in several crops — in one case increasing the acceptable level by 400 times, according to a notice in today’s Federal Register.

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Sep 14

Yoda: California Goes Dry…

Got Crowd? BE the Force!

Got Crowd? BE the Force!

Irresponsible, government is….

Not One Drop: How Long Will California Survive Life Without Water?

Tony Dokoupil

NBC News,

EXTRACTS

As the California drought approaches its fourth year, Seville’s well is one of hundreds of private water holes coughing up sand and spitting air in the Central Valley, according to Tulare County officials. As many as 100,000 more wells are at risk around the state if the rains don’t come by October.

. . . . . . .

“To shower, I use a cup, just like when I was in ‘Nam,” he said, stepping away from a stream of glistening neighbors, most of them just back from the fields. Some had dust on their ear lobes and deep in their wrinkles. None had a simple way to shower in town that night. “We’re living in a third world country now,” he continued.

. . . . . . .

“Everything was so nice,” admitted Maria. But not anymore. “California is going dry.”

Read full article.

Phi Beta Iota: All of this was understood by Jimmy Carter and his most professional civil servants. Also understood was that he would be assassinated if he tried to do anyting in relation to controlling energy and water use in the public interest and against special interests. We are entering an era in which portions of the USA are going to die and create internal displaced persons. While it is not too late to avert massive national catastrophe on multiple policy fronts, the government lacks both integrity in its electoral and governance systems, and integrity in intelligence (decision-support). Hence, the next decade for the USA is likely to be very grim.

See Also:

Books & Lists of Book Reviews @ Phi Beta Iota

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Sep 13

Berto Jongman: 38 Men Raped in US Military Each Day

Berto Jongman

Berto Jongman

38 Men Raped in U.S. Military Each Day

Sexual assault is alarmingly common in the U.S. military, and more than half of the victims are men. According to the Pentagon, thirty-eight military men are sexually assaulted every single day. These are the stories you never hear—because the culprits almost always go free, the survivors rarely speak, and no one in the military or Congress has done enough to stop it

While most of the fire from the public and Congress directed at the military addresses women who are sexually assaulted, more than half of victims are male. According to the Pentagon, 38 military men are sexually assaulted every single day, and because of the stigma, culprits nearly always go free because the survivors don’t want to speak. As one Veterans Affairs psychologist notes, “One of the myths is that the perpetrators identify as gay, which is by and large not the case. It’s not about the sex. It’s about power and control.”

Read full article.

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Sep 11

Jean Lievens: Gerry Mooney on Open Scotland — Hybrid Grassroots Activism Empowered by Social Media

Jean Lievens

Jean Lievens

Social media and grassroots activism have taken Scotland to the brink of independence

Gerry Mooney

The Conversation, 8 September 2014

EXTRACTS

If you wanted an explanation for the momentum that has carried the Yes campaign to the brink of victory in the Scottish referendum, you have to look at what’s happening on the ground. The extent to which the independence referendum has engaged and mobilised people during the campaign is palpable.

. . . . . . .

Yet as tends to be forgotten, the pro-independence movement also includes The Scottish Green Party; The Scottish Campaign for Nuclear Disarmament; The Scottish Socialist Party; the socialist party Solidarity; Women For Independence; the artists and creatives group National Collective and the socialist Radical Independence Campaign. Yes Scotland is a loose amalgam and umbrella of different pro-independence groups and individuals. A significant number of front-line activists campaigning under the Yes Scotland banner represent ordinary people with no party political membership. Some have never been involved in political activism before.

. . . . . . .

The demarcation between professional politicians and this grassroots mobilisation of ordinary people appears to be blurred in this contemporary Scottish political landscape. It is evident that a hybrid movement has emerged within the campaign, which according to Tommy Sheridan “dwarfs the anti-poll tax campaign” that he led in the late 1980s.

. . . . . . .

The opportunity to build a new Scotland free from nuclear weapons, austerity and welfare cuts has widespread appeal. It is this concern with social justice and welfare that has galvanised support for Yes.

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Sep 11

Steven Aftergood: US Intelligence Budget Data — PBI: Understated but on the Record

Steven Aftergood

Steven Aftergood

Intelligence Budget Data

On March 4, 2014, the Administration submitted its Fiscal Year 2015 budget request, including a base funding request of $45.6 billion for the National Intelligence Program (NIP), and a base funding request of $13.3 billion for the Military Intelligence Program (MIP). On June 30, the DNI submitted an updated FY2015 budget request of $49.4 billion for the NIP including funding for overseas contingency operations. An updated budget request figure for the MIP has not yet been disclosed.

Phi Beta Iota: We consider these figures to be severely deceptive and roughly 70% of the actual combined total budget for green and black intelligence capabilities that are secret, toxic, and a mix of benignly worthless (standing armies of ignorant analysts, collection that is not processed) and pathologically dangerous (drones, renditions, covert operations, subsidies to foreign intelligence services). Our best guess of the actual total US secret intelligence budget remains US$100 billion per year, inclusive of thousands of private sector “intelligence” capabilities (many of them “open source” and extremely mediocre) that are embedded within acquisition and other contracts, all out of control and of dubious value.

IC Budget Table Cropped

Click on Table to Enlarge

Click to access Office of the Director of National Intelligence Budget Justifications

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Sep 11

SchwartzReport: Workers are Poor — This Is Unsustainable

Stephan A. Schwartz

Stephan A. Schwartz

I have had a series of emails from readers over the past couple of weeks describing the growing poverty of themselves, and people they know. Mostly they seem to be middle aged not quite senior level businesspeople who were laid off, and have been unable to find work despite years of searching. As this Harvard study points out this is an unsustainable dynamic.

Widening Gap Between US Rich and Poor Is Unsustainable, Says Study
The Guardian (U.K.)

The widening gap between America’s wealthiest and its middle and lower classes is ‘unsustainable”, but is unlikely to improve any time soon, according to a Harvard Business School study released on Monday.

The study, titled An Economy Doing Half its Job, said American companies – particularly big ones – were showing some signs of recovering their competitive edge on the world stage since the financial crisis, but that workers would likely keep struggling to demand better pay and benefits.

 

 

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Sep 9

Berto Jongman: Naomi Klein on Capitalism versus Climate Change — a “People’s Shock” Coming? Robert Steele Disagrees — Precipitants of Revolution Missing

Berto Jongman

Berto Jongman

“Worth a look.”

Naomi Klein to Degrowth Conference: Climate Change Can Deliver ‘People’s Shock’

Status quo is not an option if we are to rein in runaway emissions, This Changes Everything: Capitalism Vs. the Climate author says in address to conference

“You’re having the core conversation of our time.”

That was the message delivered on Tuesday by author Naomi Klein to participants of a conference whose focus is on “concrete steps towards a society beyond the imperative of growth.”

Klein’s opening address to the Fourth International Conference on Degrowth for Ecological Sustainability and Social Equity, which kicked off Tuesday in the German city of Leipzig, made perfect sense, as the themes of her new book, This Changes Everything: Capitalism Vs. The Climate, overlap those of the conference — that addressing the climate crisis is incompatible with the current growth-focused economy.

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Sep 5