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Posted by: olddog

Member Since: 2010-10-07 20:17:54
Website: http://anationbeguiled.com

Posts by olddog:

WHAT AND WHO IS A NIGGER

September 25th, 2016 by

By Olddog

 

Up until about 1970 many white people who had been raised by prejudice parents still referred to Black people as niggers and even today the lower class black people refer to some blacks as niggers, but over-all the term has surrendered to public pressure and blacks are called blacks or black people.

It is unfortunate that our ancestors were so inconsiderate and greedy as to enslave another race regardless of their ancestry, but that was then and this is now, which makes things a lot different, and I personally have changed my habitual slandering of all races, and consider it a social requirement to be non condemning vocally as well as mentally. Well, at least I try!

One must consider the horror and the social responsibility to rectify our past inconsideration of any person regardless of their ethnic origin, their social position and any other circumstance that may affect their life, liberty, happiness and opportunities. We are all human beings, regardless of some who have advanced physical or mental abilities.

That said! There still remains the problem of hatred for a particular person who has done or said something unforgivable to ourselves or our neighbors and loved ones. And on that score I will call someone I hate any damn thing I please, and it pleases me to define the title of this rant by explaining what and who is a nigger.

Obuma is a nigger! but not because of his skin color. He is a nigger because of who he is as a person. That is my unforgivable opinion of this asshole some uninformed people call the President of the United States when in fact, he is the CEO of a corporation that has usurped our Constitution and subjected us to the whims of the International Investment Banking Cartel, and they’re United Nations corporation.

He has destroyed America’s good name and reputation world wide and is one step away from causing a global holocaust. He has defrauded his position and the American people in every way possible. So in my mind he’s a NIGGER, and I will not ever apologize to anyone regardless of the cost. I use this term because it has migrated into the most hated of all vocalizations. I sincerely hope he suffers the most long lasting, mentally agonizing, and physically painful death possible. NUFF-SAID!

RDog WEB

10 13 11 flagbar

The Big One 20 years of work filed in your behalf

September 24th, 2016 by

http://www.paulstramer.net/2016/09/the-big-one-20-years-of-work-filed-in.html

12-21-2015 3-19-06 PMby Anna Von Reitz

Yesterday I filed the Big One, the Summation of over twenty (20) years work in behalf of the actual American states owed the land jurisdiction of this country and the living people of the 50 States United. Of course, with something this long in the making, there is a lot of remembering involved and a lot of focus required, so forgive me if I am brief with this announcement. I am very tired.

We, the living American People who claim our birthright political standing as American State Nationals—- Texans, Virginians, Ohioans, Wisconsinites, and so on— and who have moved back to the land jurisdiction of our native land, are the beneficiaries of our estates.  Those who additionally act as Fiduciaries in behalf of our states on the land are American State Citizens, obligated by oath and honor to act in the best interests of all and to meet The Prudent Man Standard in all those actions we undertake.

For many who have grown up listening to a constant litany of “National Debt” news, it may come as a great surprise to learn that you are, as American State Nationals, not in debt.  You are by far the richest people on Earth.

In fact, you and your States are the Priority Creditors of the entire world. 

The debt that the rest of the world has owed us has been so insurmountable that it has served to quash business and growth, spawned a huge black market in counterfeit currencies and “derivatives”, and caused unnecessary suffering that needs to end.  So, in our own right and in your names, we’ve have moved to end it. 

As your servants and as “Prudent Men” we have requested a worldwide accounting and set off of debts, meaning that our debts to other nations are to be set off against their debts to us.  What remains as “insurmountable debt” owing will be forgiven—written off, so that everyone can have a clean start. 

This is being done to regenerate hope and economic freedom and to prevent any necessity of war or undue suffering.  It is well-within our ability and in our best interests to do this.

Our fortunes are so vast that it doesn’t even matter.

We are the beneficiaries of approximately 185,000 of the richest corporations on Earth, approximately 10,000 state of, county of, and municipal corporations in this country, and corporations like CANADA and AUSTRALIA that “own” entire countries, together with all their corporations under them. 

Quite literally, we little pea-pickers and Indians have inherited the Earth. 

Now what to do with it?  For starters, everyone needs a living stipend to make life possible for many in the Third World and make it bearable for others, even here in America.  So our proposal is that every man, woman, and child receive an individual payment equivalent in local currency to $2000 per month as an independent living stipend on top of whatever other income they may have.

This will end abject poverty throughout the world and make life bearable for many who are now suffering needlessly.

We have also proposed that each one receive the equivalent in local currency of $1000 per month in a savings/investment account that they can use to invest for their own future. 

These funds are directed to be paid individually with no strings, no middlemen, no governments involved.  Just a straight one-to-one transaction from the World Heritage Fund and the World Investment Fund to each one of you.

For many this will all just be pleasant “extra”, but for others it is the difference between life and death, starvation and a good future.

There will also be plenty of money for infrastructure investments, for re-booting the government we are owed, and for all the tasks which face this planet and our nation among all the nations of the world.

Britain, France, and other nations have tried to obscure the truth of the American States and mischaracterize and misrepresent and fool the American People, so as to set up a false claim that we all “voluntarily” chose to serve as “United States Citizens” or “citizens of the United States” and that our States of the Union were “civilly dead”—– but as we and everyone else now knows, that is nothing but a self-interested lie promoted by foreign interests seeking to avoid their own debts and hoping to come in as Secondary Creditors and bring false claims of “abandonment” in commerce.

Those actions have been forestalled by the fifty (50) State Liens recorded as Non-UCC liens and by two subsequent actions which collect the National Debt and re-convey the assets of the actual States to the land jurisdiction. 

It’s done.  It’s over.  It’s on the record. 

Much too everyone’s surprise, the Sleeping Giant woke up at its own funeral and yawned and said, “Fie, fei, foe, fum!” 

Get your motors running.  Inform the Vatican.  Inform the Kremlin.  Inform Beijing. The Republic States are alive and well and so are the American People. 

Contrary to what you’ve been told, we are not the “United States”.  We don’t have a $19 trillion-plus National Debt. 

We have a $19 trillion-plus National Credit.  And that’s not all. 

We are the majority shareholders in virtually everything big enough to spit at from here to Damascus. We are owed 150 years worth of back rent, the entirety of the 1930’s bankruptcy fraud, and so much more…….that at the end of the day, the only real question is—- can we all imagine a better world? 

A much, much better world?  

See this article and over 300 others on Anna’s website here:www.annavonreitz.com

2-6-2015 10-13-51 AM

The REAL Cost of the War of Terror

September 23rd, 2016 by

https://www.corbettreport.com/the-real-cost-of-the-war-of-terror/

CLICK HERE for the YouTube version of this video

by James Corbett
TheInternationalForecaster.com
We all know by now that the real terrorists (the politicians in the suits and ties and the banksters that pull their strings) are waging their war of terror on multiple fronts for multiple reasons.

Domestically, it rallies the population around the flag, keeping the flock in check. At the same time it justifies the build up of the police state control grid to catch the thought criminals who resist.

It also writes a blank check for the illegal wars of aggression abroad. Simply place your terrorist boogeyman in the square of the chessboard you’re looking to occupy and — hey presto! — you’ve got yourself an excuse to invade. (Even if you “accidentally” end up supporting them, right Uncle Sam?)

But of course the politicians, their string pullers and their fellow travelers benefit from the war of terror in a more straightforward sense. They get to use the terror scares that they themselves create to drum up billions upon billions in the name of fighting the boogeymen.

We’ve all heard of the $640 toilet seat and other ridiculous examples of Pentagon “overspending,” but these stories tend to trivialize the abuses by the military-defense contractors whose entire industry is built on providing overpriced solutions to made up problems. After all, the Pentagon itself just admitted it could cut $2 billion from its budget by shutting down some of the needless bases and defense facilities that have been built around the globe in the name of the American empire.

But $2 billion is chump change.

In the 15 years since 9/11, $1 trillion has been spent building up the police state in the American “homeland” itself.

Meanwhile, the Defense Department has been spending over $600 billion per year maintaining the American military in the post-9/11 era. $4 to $6 trillion of that was spent on the Iraq and Afghanistan wars alone, the most expensive wars in US history.

Combined defense spending, including Homeland Security, DoD, State Department, defense related debt interest and other defense costs, has reached the highest levels in modern history over the past decade. From a Cold War era high in the 1980s of $3500 for every man, woman and child in the United States to a 1990s low of $2500, that figure has since breached $4000. Just look at the chart; it isn’t hard to see exactly when the trend reversed and the good times began to flow for the military-industrial contractors: It was 9/11, the birthday of the war of terror and the new era of homeland security.

There are other numbers we could throw in here:

The billions upon billions in military aid sent to the co-perpetrators of the war of terror, including the $38 billion that has been promised Israel over the next 10 years.

The $1.5 trillion joke known as the F-35 fighter jet.

The $6.5 trillion of “year-end adjustments” in the ongoing, never-ending saga of the Pentagon’s missing trillions.

But we have to be careful not to fall into the psychopaths’ trap. The real costs of the war of terror cannot be measured in dollars and cents. They are not tallied in a ledger. They are not about money at all.

The real cost is paid in blood. The blood of a million dead Iraqis. The blood of the hundreds of thousands murdered men, women and children in Afghanistan and Pakistan. The blood that is being shed right now in Syria, in Libya, in Yemen, and in all of the countries that have crossed through the crosshairs of the NATO, American and Israeli terrorists.

It’s measured in the devastation of towns and cities that once bustled with life. In the families torn apart by drone bombings. In the havoc of the hundreds of thousands forced to flee their homes, leave their families and their homeland and their former life behind as everything they knew is torn to shreds.

It’s measured in the blood of the servicemen and women themselves. Lied to, propagandized and indoctrinated their entire lives, given a ticket out of grinding poverty by the military, shot up with experimental vaccines and shoved into the meat grinder for tour of duty after tour of duty. And then, upon returning home, left to rot in rundown hospitals and ignored by the glad-handing politicians and their military-industrial cronies as a suicide epidemic gradually thins their ranks.

This is the true cost of the war of terror, and it is incalculable. And none of it, absolutely none of it, will come to an end until the public stops believing the false narrative of the war of terror and the lies that have brought it about.

Much like Santa Claus and the Easter bunny, the real terrorists can only survive if you believe in them.

OLDDOGS COMMENTS

Just remember everyone of those scumbags you voted for are laughing all the way to the bank!

5-10-2016 8-55-33 AM

Barack Obama domestic enemy of and traitor to the United States of America its Constitution and Bill of Rights.

September 22nd, 2016 by

https://johnhenryhill.wordpress.com/2016/05/23/barack-obama-domestic-enemy-of-and-traitor-to-the-united-states-of-america-its-constitution-and-bill-of-rights/

May 23, 2016 · by JohnHenryHill · in Original Articles

My Post:

Barack Obama: “domestic enemy” of and traitor to the United States of America, its Constitution, and Bill of Rights.

by John-Henry Hill, M.D., Ph.D.

LAW Blog: https://johnhenryhill.wordpress.com

Original Posting: May 23, 2016

Updated: May 25, 2016 (in response to a comment by Ken Johnson)

Barack Obama is most certainly a “domestic enemy” of and traitor to the United States of America and its Constitution and Bill of Rights. He has violated the legitimate powers of the Presidency in instances too numerous to count or list here.

What the Founders knew is that the Constitution was a type of legal TRUST (a CONTRACT) created by the various sovereign states, for the people as “individual sovereigns” over the states and the U.S.- which did NOT even yet exist. (And one can NOT make a contract with an entity that does NOT yet exist, in this case, the U.S. government.)

The Preamble to the Constitution makes this fact of the Constitution being a TRUST very clear: “We the people of the United States, in order to form a more perfect union, establish justice, insure domestic tranquility, provide for the common defense, promote the general welfare, and secure the blessings of liberty to ourselves and our posterity, do ordain and establish this Constitution for the United States of America.” But it was the STATES that ratified (signed) this contract as a contractual TRUST among these states.

As any good attorney knows, in ANY legal TRUST (contract), there are 3 parties: the Grantor (the states), the Trustee (the new U.S. government) who administers the Trust strictly according to the specifications within the Trust contract), and the Beneficiaries (the people; “ourselves and our posterity”). Thus the Grantor(s) (states) are the “boss” of the Trustee; and can take legal action against the Trustee on behalf of the Beneficiaries (people) should the Trustee (U.S. government) violate ANY terms of the Trust contract. This is true of any TRUST contract.

1.) The Constitution of the United States

http://www.archives.gov/exhibits/charters/constitution_transcript.html and https://www.law.cornell.edu/constitution/overview

Article II, Section 1

“Before he enter on the Execution of his Office, he shall take the following OATH or AFFIRMATION:—’I do solemnly swear (or affirm) that I will faithfully execute the Office of President of the United States, and will to the best of my Ability, preserve, protect and defend the Constitution of the United States.”’

Look up the terms “SWEAR”, “OATH”, and “AFFIRMATION” in any good law dictionary (Black’s or Bouvier’s) and you will see that they all mean a CONTRACT. Applicable Maxims of Law (which are considered as absolute TRUTH in Law; thus need NOT be proved in any court) : In law none is credited unless he is sworn.”; “All the facts must, when established by witnesses, be under oath or affirmation.”; “There is no stronger bond between men than an oath.”; “They are perjured, who, preserving the words of an oath, deceive the ears of those who receive it.”; An oath is a contract in law.”

Article I, Section 1: All legislative Powers herein granted shall be vested in a Congress of the United States, which shall consist of a Senate and House of Representatives.

Article I, Section 8: Contains a listing of ALL the powers granted to Congress (“enumerated power”); it can exercise ONLY those powers listed. The President can ONLY execute the constitutional statutes passed by Congress – he is given NO powers to issue “Executive Orders”, etc; and therefore NO federal agency (he has authority over all) can issue “regulations” which do NOT conform to the statute and intent of the statute (when passed). Most importantly, any legislated act or statute is NOT true”Law” per se. As the Founders, states and people of that time well understood, all legislated acts or statutes are merely “OFFERS TO CONTRACT” – which the states and people may choose to accept or reject. If accepted by the states and the people, such statutes assume the “FORCE OF LAW” with JURISDICTION over only over the states and people within the states that accepted that statute. (Legislated acts or statutes NEVER become “true Law” – the only “True Law” was – and remains today – the Common Law, which supersedes all legislated statutes — so the U.S. Supreme Court has ruled numerous times, even as recently as 1973.)

“The judgment of a court of record [a court operating under the Common Law only; NO statutes allowed] whose jurisdiction is final, is as conclusive on all the world as the judgment of this court [the U.S. Supreme Court] would be. It is as conclusive on this court [the U.S. Supreme Court] as it is on other courts. It puts an end to inquiry concerning the fact, by deciding it.” U.S. Supreme Court decision in Ex parte Watkins, 3 Pet., at 202-203. [cited by SCHNECKLOTH v. BUSTAMONTE, 412 U.S. 218, 255 (1973)]

The ONLY exceptions where federal statutes are required to be followed are: in Washington, D.C. (which technically IS the “United States”), its Territories and Possessions (then the so-called Northwest Territory), and by employees (agents) of the U.S. government working within the several states. Over Washington, DC and Territories and Possessions, Congress has absolute authority under the Constitution.

2.) The Bill of Rights

http://www.archives.gov/exhibits/charters/bill_of_rights.html

During the debates on the adoption of the Constitution, its opponents repeatedly charged that the Constitution as drafted would open the way to tyranny by the central government. One of the many points of contention between Federalists and Anti-Federalists was the Constitution’s lack of a bill of rights that would place specific limits on government power. Federalists argued that the Constitution did NOT need a bill of rights, because the people and the states kept any powers NOT given to the federal government. Anti-Federalists held that a bill of rights was necessary to safeguard individual liberty. Fresh in their minds was the memory of the British violation of civil rights before and during the Revolution. They demanded a “bill of rights” that would spell out the immunities of individual citizens.

Relevant to this discussion are: [see Article 1, Section 8]

Amendment IX: “The enumeration in the Constitution, of certain rights, shall NOT be construed to deny or disparage others retained by the PEOPLE.”

Amendment X: “The powers NOT delegated to the United States by the Constitution, nor prohibited by it to the states, are reserved to the STATES respectively, or to the PEOPLE.”

3.) “Constitution of the United States of America: Analysis and Interpretation (The “Constitution of the United States of America: Analysis and Interpretation” (popularly known as the “Constitution Annotated”) contains legal analysis and interpretation of the United States Constitution, based primarily on Supreme Court case law. https://www.congress.gov/constitution-annotated  

The latest edition of this book is given for free to EVERY member of Congress; and to the President. Before Congress or the President takes any action or assumes any powers, this book is supposed to act as a “reference” to determine if such actions or powers to be assumed are constitutional.

The authors of the article below miss the point entirely: just about EVERYTHING Barack Obama has done (and many Presidents and Congresses before him) were and are UNCONSTITUTIONAL in that they greatly exceeded the powers (“enumerated powers”) granted in the Constitution AND as the Trustee of the legal TRUST (contract) ratified states for the Beneficiaries (the people).

Obviously, over the last 150 plus years very few members of Congress and Presidents have consulted the Constitution, Bill of Rights or this book, Constitution of the United States of America: Analysis and Interpretation!

John-Henry Hill, M.D., Ph.D.

LAW Blog: https://johnhenryhill.wordpress.com

May 23, 2016

Added 5/25/2016 in Response to a Most Welcome Comment by Ken Johnson

In reply to Ken Johnson.

Ken,                                      May 25, 2016

Thank you for reading this brief essay on my web site AND for YOUR COMMENT!!!

If you look in any good LAW dictionary (Black’s 4th Edition or earlier OR Bouvier’s from about 1852 or so), you will find that the words “SHALL” and “MUST” in law actually mean “MAY”. – as in you “may” or “may not” choose to obey a legislated act (statute) or any of its offspring (regulations, by-laws, etc.) And the word “REQUIRE” in law actually means “REQUEST”. A CODE is simply a collection of statutes. (These definitions are left out of more “modern” law dictionaries, for obvious political reasons – but those terms were well understood by the Founders and the people in America and Britain from the early 1600’s until about the 1860’s, changing ever so slowly over time. BUT even the U.S. Supreme Court has recently issued rulings affirming the definitions I presented here!!!! (They are just not covered by the mainstream media.) And they most certainly are NOT taught in American law schools!!!!

In short, you are CORRECT.

As I stated in my brief article, legislated acts (statutes) and their offspring are merely “OFFERS TO CONTRACT”, which (as is true for ALL contracts) one may agree to or not agree to. The “catch” is that the states and U.S. government (especially the courts) make the PRESUMPTION that you have AGREED to their contract (statute), thereby giving them JURISDICTION over you. And the ancient Maxims of Law still applies today: “A presumption NOT rebutted stands as the Truth.” and “Silence is consent.” After I learned all this stuff for my Ph.D. in the political history of British and American law, I NEVER went to go court without submitting to the court a written, notarized AFFIDAVIT (submitted in-person to the Clerk of the Court, who stamps 2 copies – 1 for the judge and my own copy; the Clerk of the Court MUST accept it if you write on it “Submitted on Demand”) rebutting all such presumptions by the court, along with a list of MY definitions to be used in the case. In the affidavit, I give the court seven (7) days to respond – and if it does NOT respond within those 7 days, then BY DEFAULT the court has agreed with me and accepted everything in my affidavit as the truth in the law of the case. Maxims of Law: “An unrebutted affidavit stands as the truth in Law.” and “He, who does not object, consents.”

(It is easy to do: only the first page of the affidavit gets changed in a few places. The rest, such as Maxims of Law, my definitions, etc., stay the same.) The court will almost NEVER respond with a rebuttal of my affidavit within those 7 days, it has AGREED to everything in my affidavit – so it (the state and the judge) have LOST by default. IF I decide to appear in court (which is almost NEVER), I have a notarized, stamped-by-the-Court-Clerk, copy of this affidavit. The judge can NOT ignore it, for he will be subject to criminal and civil actions if he does so. Further, I can turn this affidavit into an “International Commercial Lien” (explained in another article on my web site) thereby “freezing” ALL his current and future assets for 99 years (or forever if I place it in a trust). And if I register this Lien with the U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC), it becomes a “negotiable instrument” which I can sell to any investor, investment bank, etc. Since my Liens are typically for $50 Million and a buyer will usually offer between 1-2% of this nominal value, that means I just made $500,000 to $1 Million tax-free dollars. And NO COURT in the world can over-turn this Lien, since it is created by a non-judicial process in which there was NO controversy (recall that, by not responding with his own “notarized affidavit of rebuttal”, the judge has ALREADY AGREED with everything in my original affidavit) – and where there is NO controversy, NO court may assume jurisdiction!!! And if one does appear in court, let your DOCUMENTS do all the “talking” – NEVER say anything more! If pressed by the judge to “explain” something, just say, “It is ALL explained in the documents submitted, so I have absolutely nothing to add.” And do NOT swear any OATH in court, since that negates your documents and gives the judge jurisdiction over you. Remember the Maxim of Law, “An oath is a contract in law.” And at this point, you do NOT want to create a new contract with the court by swearing an oath!

Do NOT expect lawyers (except for International Commercial Lien specialists) or lower-court judges to know this stuff, since it is never taught in U.S. law schools. But a judge on the Appeals Court level will often know about it; and most definitely a judge on a state or federal supreme court. Lastly, if ANYONE tries to interfere with this Lien, that person may be easily added to the Lien by simply writing his name, title, address and brief description of what he did onto the back of the Lien – so ALL his assets get “frozen” also and he then also owes me $50 Million!!!

One can “beat the system” IF one knows the system – and then use the system against “the powers that be”. I have used “International Commercial Liens” on 6 people (all U.S. officials); and won EVERY time! (This is in another article on this web site about “DONUTS, etc”.) And I NEVER paid for any out-of-state traffic ticket, parking ticket, etc – only those in Massachusetts because my drivers license was a CONTRACT with the state.

By the way, I now live most of the year in Ukraine or Crimea – so I no longer have to deal with courts in the U.S.

Best wishes!

JHH

Extra Stuff:

After the ratification of the original (“organic”) “The Constitution for the united States of America”, written in plain English for all to understand, the courts, Congress and people accepted as FACTS OF LAW that the people as individuals were the sovereigns of the Union states, the various states were viewed as separate “foreign countries with respect to each other and with respect the United States”; and most almost all legislated acts (statutes; from which regulations were written) applied ONLY to employees and agents of the U.S. government. The Congress had jurisdiction only over Washington City, as the seat of the federal government, federal Territories, federal forts and naval stations within a state; and federal buildings within a state, usually federal Post offices. Federal statutes applied to people living in one of the sovereign states ONLY if that individual man CONSENTED to that particular statute. The federal courts existed solely to settle disputes between states; and disputes between people from two different states.

..at the Revolution, the sovereignty devolved on the people; and they are truly the sovereigns of the country, but they are sovereigns without subjects…with none to govern but themselves….. [CHISHOLM v. GEORGIA (US) 2 Dall 419, 454, 1 L Ed 440, 455 @DALL (1793) pp471-472.]

“There is no such thing as a power of inherent sovereignty in the government of the United States …. In this country sovereignty resides in the people, and Congress can exercise no power which they have not, by their Constitution entrusted to it: All else is withheld.” — Julliard v. Greenman, 110 U.S. 421..

The people of this State, as the successors of its former sovereign, are entitled to all the rights which formerly belonged to the King by his prerogative. [Lansing v. Smith, 4 Wend. 9 (N.Y.) (1829), 21 Am.Dec. 89 10C Const. Law Sec. 298; 18 C Em.Dom. Sec. 3, 228; 37 C Nav.Wat. Sec. 219; Nuls Sec. 167; 48 C Wharves Sec. 3, 7.]

“It will be admitted on all hands that with the exception of the powers granted to the states and the federal government, through the Constitutions, the people of the several states are unconditionally sovereign within their respective states.“ ~ Ohio L. Ins. & T. Co. v. Debolt, 16 How. 416, 14 L.Ed. 997 (1854)

“Our government is founded upon compact [contract]. Sovereignty was, and is, in the people“ — Glass v. Sloop Betsey, U.S. Supreme Court, 1794.

Even Alexander Hamilton (1st Secretary of the Treasury under President George Washington) and one of the most ardent advocates for a strong central government wrote, “Necessity and expediency are NOT legitimate excuses for violating the Constitution you swore to uphold and protect – even during a ‘crisis’“.

“The Constitution for the united States of America”, written in plain English for all to understand, the courts, Congress and people accepted as FACTS OF LAW that the people as individuals were the sovereigns of the Union states, “the various states are separate foreign countries with respect to each other and with respect the United States” (from various U.S. Supreme Court rulings)

COMPLETE ARTICLE

Mission not quite accomplished: Obama’s antiterrorism legacy

by Daniel Klaidman and Olivier Knox

 

https://www.yahoo.com/news/mission-not-quite-accomplished-obama-000000102.html

Three years ago today, Barack Obama gave a major counterterrorism address at the National Defense University at Fort McNair in Washington, D.C. It was what his aides call a “framing” speech, an effort to knit together an overarching approach to the fight against radical terrorists. Predictably, Obama touted his administration’s key successes. Osama bin Laden was dead, the core al-Qaida organization in Pakistan was “on a path to defeat,” and there had been no “large-scale” terror attacks on U.S. soil since he had taken office.

And he stoutly defended some his own most controversial actions, such as the incineration-by-drone of Anwar al-Awlaki, the American-born preacher and chief of external operations for the Yemeni offshoot of al-Qaida. “His citizenship should no more serve as a shield than a sniper shooting down on an innocent crowd should be protected by a SWAT team,” Obama averred.

But the speech, many months in the works, was also an unusual public expression of Obama’s private angst about the American killing machine he had built and was now presiding over. He hadn’t run for office so that he could “go around blowing things up,” he’d told his national security team, according to an account in the New Yorker.

He gave his audience an extraordinary glimpse into how he weighs the tradeoffs between security, morality and law, confessing his own personal anguish upon learning that strikes he had ordered killed civilians. (“For me, and those in my chain of command, those deaths will haunt us for as long as we live,” he said.)

He rededicated himself to closing the Guantanamo Bay detention facility, an effort that had collapsed amid congressional obstruction, political realities and Obama’s own laconic approach toward Congress.

Most strikingly, Obama mused openly for the first time in his presidency about how to move the country off a perpetual wartime footing. “This war, like all wars, must end,” Obama said. “That’s what history advises. It’s what our democracy demands.”

To that purpose, he announced a series of new polices (a Presidential Policy Guidance in the bureaucratic vernacular) that would narrow the scope of the American struggle against terrorism, create more stringent rules for the use of lethal force and generally impose more accountability and transparency on a killing process that had operated almost entirely in the shadows.

Obama issued directives reining in the use of drones outside conventional battlefields and tightening the criteria for targeted killings. To circumscribe what many critics saw as a war that had become boundless in time and geography, Obama vowed to work with Congress to “refine and ultimately repeal” the Authorization for Use of Military force, the Congressional writ that gave the American president sweeping powers in the immediate aftermath of 9/11.

And he urged a more nuanced approach to identifying those terrorist groups that required a military response from the United States. Not every band of extremists involved in local insurgencies poses a threat to our national existence or way of life, he suggested.

Obama located the country at a crossroads and declared that it was time to “define the nature and scope of the struggle, or it will define us.” Implicitly, he was saying that we had to regain our perspective and not overreact to a threat that was actually receding. For 12 years politicians and security officials had warned against a pre-9/11 mentality of complacency. Obama was pointing out the complementary danger of being stuck in a post-9/11 mindset of overreaction to a threat that seemed to be receding.

But now the battlefield assessments are more dire and the threat is metastasizing. A raging civil war in Syria paved the way for the emergence of ISIS, which captured huge swaths of territory in Iraq and Syria and declared a caliphate. The group shocked the world by beheading American and other Western hostages. It demonstrated an ability to pull off large-scale attacks in the heart of Europe and to inspire plots like the one in San Bernardino, Calif., that left 14 dead. Fear of Islamist terrorism was spiking in American cities and pulsating through the 2016 presidential campaign.

Talk of winding down the terror wars has been dropped from the Obama administration’s message. Instead, the administration has been pouring thousands of new troops back into the Middle East, and his aides were looking for a new vocabulary to describe a strategy that more closely resembled the approach of the previous decade than the forward-looking agenda Obama had laid out at Fort McNair.

Ben Rhodes, the deputy national security adviser and close adviser to Obama, described a hybrid strategy comprising many elements, which together do not add up to a traditional war. “We have a variety of different tools that we use that range from a drone strike to an airstrike to a training exercise to law enforcement cooperation to try to deal with that terrorist threat,” Rhodes said in an interview. Likening the strategy to “Plan Colombia,” the 1990s-era U.S. initiative to combat Colombian drug cartels and leftist insurgents, Rhodes said that the U.S. has assumed “a counterterrorism posture that resembles less a war than a mix of counterterrorism efforts and military support to countries that are dealing with fractured states and civil conflicts.”

But the reality is that a president whose ambition had been to wind down and ultimately end the wars of 9/11 has found it hard to resist the inexorable momentum toward more military engagement.

Obama has been accused in the past of failing to follow up his lofty rhetoric with resolute action, of attempting to bend the arc of history with mere eloquence. The truth is more complicated. Circumstances have changed, making some promises harder to fulfill. In some areas progress has been made, but it is often slow and plodding. We are not reverting back to a post-9/11 formula, occupying countries with large standing armies and twisting our foreign policy to fit that paradigm.

In the twilight of his presidency, it’s reasonable to start asking what Obama’s record on terrorism will look like when he departs — and what he will leave behind to his successor, both in terms of the nature of the terror threat and the tools available to deal with it. What follows is an assessment of Obama’s accomplishments and where he’s fallen short, measured by the yardstick of his own words.

Even before he became president, Obama had identified drones as his go-to weapon. During the transition, he and John Brennan, soon to be his counterterrorism adviser and later director of the CIA, agreed that the surgical capabilities of drones served Obama’s larger strategic goals in the fight against terrorism: taking the bad guys off the battlefield and thwarting attacks, while shrinking America’s footprint in the region. Likening terrorism to a cancer, Brennan said “you need to target the metastasizing disease without destroying the surrounding tissue.” The weapon of choice: armed pilotless aircraft, or drones

But Obama’s very first experience with a drone strike rattled him. Four days into his presidency, the CIA was targeting al-Qaida and Taliban commanders in South Waziristan along the Afghan-Pakistan border. But the strike went badly awry, killing an innocent tribal elder and several members of his family.

It was the start of a pattern that has run through his entire presidency. Intellectually, Obama was able to make an ironclad case for the utility of drones, from both a moral and tactical standpoint. As commander in chief he could not stand by idly when the intelligence indicated terrorists were plotting to kill Americans. The precision of drones, he was convinced, would minimize civilian casualties compared to conventional airstrikes or ground combat, without risking American lives. And yet deadly mistakes continued, innocents were killed, and Obama always seemed to have a nagging feeling that he couldn’t fully control this controversial program that was so closely identified with him personally.

The deadly efficiency of the program made it hard to resist. During the first couple of years of the administration, the Obama White House sometimes seemed almost giddy about the CIA’s successes. Rahm Emanuel, the president’s first chief of staff, was the program’s biggest cheerleader, regularly calling then-CIA Director Leon Panetta to congratulate him for major strikes. He even urged the agency to tout its successes in the media by leaking colorful details of the covert hits to friendly reporters.

But ironically, one of the strikes that Emanuel celebrated was also a turning point for the program. Baitullah Mehsud was a senior leader of the Pakistani Taliban and one of the most bloodthirsty terrorists on the CIA’s kill list. In the summer of 2009, agency spotters had Mehsud in their sights. But they couldn’t guarantee a clean shot. He would likely be surrounded by civilians. With the White House’s blessing, the strike was made. Mehsud was killed, but so was his wife, who was massaging his legs at the time.

The strike was viewed by its “operators” as a major victory in the war on terror. But the unintended casualties gave pause to some in the White House, including Obama. In the aftermath of the Baitullah strike and others that had gone badly, the program was put through a “hot washing,” according to a knowledgeable source, using a military term for a rigorous performance review.

Other factors heightened concerns over the targeted killing program. The Pakistani government, a critical ally in the war against al-Qaida, was threatening to withdraw cooperation because the strikes were so unpopular there. The American ambassador in Pakistan, backed by Secretary of State Hillary Clinton, called for scaling back the program and requested more input in authorizing the strikes.

In response, the White House began developing standards for drone strikes outside conventional battlefields. Obama wanted to institutionalize rules for using these deadly weapons, both for his administration and for future presidents. The new standards could also serve as a blueprint for international norms for drone warfare as the technology became available to other armies.

The project, informally called the “playbook” and run by Brennan, resulted in a Presidential Planning Guidance, which Obama announced at the Fort McNair speech. It was an effort to make sure “we had a rigorous process for figuring out who was worth taking a shot at,” said a one senior Obama adviser.

The PPG, a classified document, limits drone strikes to human targets who cannot be captured and who pose a “continuing imminent threat” to Americans. Moreover, under the policy guidance, such drone strikes can only be authorized when there is “near certainty” that no civilians will be killed. (The imminence standard has been criticized by human rights lawyers because of the administration’s elastic definition of imminence. Obama officials have argued that that it would be too late to take action once terrorists were executing an operation.)

Obama also proposed in the PPG new mechanisms for increasing oversight of drone operations outside of war zones. He pledged to work with Congress to develop a special court that would evaluate “lethal action,” although he warned that bringing the judiciary into the process might pose constitutional problems. He also raised the possibility of establishing an “independent oversight board” within the executive branch to oversee drone strikes.

One key reform he did not announce at the National Defense University speech, but rather set in motion secretly, was shifting drone operations away from the CIA to the Pentagon, which is subject to more accountability and transparency.

Three years later, how well has Obama lived up to these goals? It’s a mixed picture, although some progress has clearly been made.

Since 2013, the number of drone strikes outside of conventional war zones has fallen dramatically. At the peak in 2010, there were more than 122 fired in Pakistan, according to the New America foundation. In 2013 there were 26; in 2014 there were 22; and so far this year there have only been 2. Less drastic, but still substantial, decreases have also occurred in Yemen and in Somalia.

This is partly due to changing circumstances; in Pakistan, after a decade of pounding al-Qaida and the Taliban, there are very few targets left to hit. “They are either dead, have left the region, or are so burrowed in they can’t be targeted,” said one former intelligence official with deep knowledge of the drone program. But just on Saturday, the leader of the Afghan Taliban, Mullah Akhtar Mohammad Mansour, was targeted by a drone strike along the Pakistan-Afghanistan border, according to the Afghan government, killed along with an associate.

What impact the more rigorous standards imposed on the drone program by the PPG have had on the pace and efficacy of targeted killings is less clear. For one thing those standards do not apply in Pakistan at this point.

Obama’s pledge to consider a secret court or an independent board to oversee the drone program has gone nowhere. Both of those options, according to a senior administration official, have been shelved.

Moving the program from the CIA to the Defense Department has proven to be slow and difficult. The agency, unsurprisingly, resisted giving up a program that was a boon to its reputation. But a bigger obstacle was the intense turf war waged out of public view between the congressional oversight committees for intelligence and defense. “The intel committees fought viciously to keep the program,” said one top administration official.

Moreover, real questions emerged about whether the Pentagon had the technical know-how to take over exclusive control over the drone program. In 2014 a Defense Department drone strike in Southern Yemen accidentally killed a number of civilians attending a wedding party, provoking a debate within the government about the wisdom of turning the program over to the military. The CIA seized on the accident to argue for keeping a major role in choosing targets.

There is some evidence that the military has assumed command of the program in at least one theater of war.  Lately, the Defense Department has been willing to publicly take credit for drone strikes in Yemen. When both the CIA and Yemen were operating parallel programs there, the military could not reveal its operations, because on those occasions when it did not take the shot, keeping silent would have implicitly exposed the CIA’s role. A senior administration official predicted to Yahoo News in a recent interview that by the time Obama leaves office, the program will have fully shifted over to the military, with the exception of operations in Pakistan. That’s because the Pakistani government will only allow the U.S. to operate there covertly, which only the CIA can do. Elsewhere, the CIA, with its unique expertise, will continue to gather and analyze the intelligence needed to target terrorists. The military will track the bad guys and then pull the trigger.

Administration officials cite the drone killing of Junaid Hussain, a top ISIS propagandist and computer hacker, as a model for the kind of “dual command” structure that could be used going forward. Barack Obama shed no tears over that operation.

The world was different enough in May 2013 that Obama could plausibly promise that he would try “to refine, and ultimately repeal” the 2001 legislation that set the stage for the invasion of Afghanistan and the global war against al-Qaida. He could tell Americans that, with some work at both ends of Pennsylvania Avenue, “we can continue to fight terrorism without keeping America on a perpetual wartime footing.” His administration later called for repealing the October 2002 Authorization for Use of Military Force that gave George W. Bush the green light to invade Iraq — a step loaded with significance for Obama, who built his history-making 2008 campaign on a vow to disentangle a weary America from the Middle East.

Top Obama aides and their allies in Congress now acknowledge that the job of rewriting the legislation that underpins the war on terrorism will almost certainly fall to the next administration. “I do think any future president is going to need to figure this out,” Rhodes told Yahoo News.

Obama has now spent more time at war than any other U.S. president. His unwillingness to use force is frequently exaggerated both by aides eager to portray him as the solution to Bush-era problems and by critics eager to cast him as a weak defender of U.S. national interests. In 2008, he promised to kill bin Laden if he got the chance — even if the terrorist mastermind were on sovereign Pakistani soil. In May 2011, he kept that promise. In his 2009 Nobel Peace Prize acceptance speech, Obama talked of constraining war but bluntly vowed: “I — like any head of state — reserve the right to act unilaterally if necessary to defend my nation.” He became the first American president known to have targeted an individual American citizen, al-Awlaki, for assassination. His decision not to strike Syria in 2013 has drawn sharp criticism, but many of his fiercest critics (and the U.S. public) also opposed using force at the time. He hurled U.S. forces into combat in Libya without congressional authorization (and without a plan for filling the vacuum left by Moammar Gadhafi). And in his 2015 campaign to sell his nuclear agreement with Iran, Obama freely boasted of ordering the use of deadly force in at least seven countries — overtly, covertly, deploying troops, ordering drone strikes, acting with or without congressional authority, with allies or unilaterally, and sometimes in ways that test the bounds of international law.

But the 2013 speech came at a time when the president hoped to escape being pulled into Syria’s civil war, two months before the so-called Islamic State terrorist army launched its campaign to seize vast swathes of Iraqi territory. He was speaking nearly one year before U.S. officials warned that terrorist groups inside Syria were plotting attacks on the West, fundamentally altering Obama’s view of that conflict. ISIS, as the Islamic State is also known, essentially rewrote the president’s strategy.

At the time of the National Defense University speech, White House aides thought they saw a window for curtailing executive war-making authority under the 2001 AUMF. Congress, in this scenario, would take a more assertive role in defining the proper means and the ends before young Americans charge into battle. Obama’s team also contended that the 2001 measure, designed to target al-Qaida, was increasingly out of date — an argument they still make.

“You could foresee a scenario in several years where al-Qaida, the organization that launched the 9-11 attacks and which we created an AUMF for, really doesn’t exist anymore; it’s fully out of business,” Rhodes said.

“So are you still using an authority crafted for an organization based in Afghanistan in 2001 to fight an organization that’s based in Somalia and Mali and Yemen in 2019? To us that, at a certain point, becomes unsustainable,” Rhodes said.

In February 2015, Obama sent Congress a new AUMF, explicitly authorizing his undeclared but escalating military campaign against ISIS (or, to the administration, ISIL) and pressed Congress to start the work of refining, and repealing, the 2001 law.

But the new measure has stalled, perhaps for good. While the administration could still send Congress proposed changes to the 2001 AUMF, the White House insists a new measure, aimed at ISIS, has to be in place before it can risk losing the authority it claims to have under the older resolution.

“We do believe that we still need to have the authority to degrade and ultimately destroy ISIL, and, where necessary, continue to apply pressure to al-Qaida affiliates around the globe,” White House press secretary Josh Earnest said in April.

But “I can’t really conceive of rolling back [the 2001 AUMF] unless we have a replacement, whatever it looks like, on the books,” a former career national security official who used to advise Obama told Yahoo News on condition of anonymity.

For Rhodes, this president or a successor will have to embrace a new legal framework.

“I think it will become increasingly unsustainable to be relying on an authority crafted for a place and time, an organization that really doesn’t exist anymore,” he said.

Either way, the United States seems set to remain on the “perpetual wartime footing” that Obama declared he wanted to end.

When Obama ordered the closure of the Guantanamo detention center on his third day in office, there were 241 detainees at the facility, down from a total of about 800 when George W. Bush opened the prison after 9/11. By early 2013, the start of his second term, that number had dropped by only about a third, to 166.

As of this February, it was down to 91, and today there are 80 detainees remaining at the prison. That number will decrease even more over the next few months. But when Obama leaves office on Jan. 20, 2017, Gitmo, as it is known, will almost certainly still be open for business, leaving one of the president’s signature campaign promises unfulfilled.

There is plenty of blame to go around for this. Early in Obama’s first term, efforts to shutter Guantanamo were overwhelmed by the politics of terrorism.

In May 2009, Democratic House Appropriations Committee Chairman Dave Obey stripped $80 million that Obama had requested to close the prison from an emergency funding bill. “While I don’t mind defending a concrete program, I’m not much interested in wasting my energy defending a theoretical program,” Obey said at the time. “So when they have a plan, they’re welcome to come back and talk to us about it.“

Republican hardliners (with not a few Democrats going along) seized on the issue to try to make Obama look weak on national security. The Obama administration provided all the ammo Republicans needed with its clumsy and ill-fated plan to transfer a handful of forlorn Chinese Uighur prisoners to a Northern Virginia suburb, touching off a full-blown NIMBY (not in my backyard) rebellion in Congress.

The Obama team members seriously underestimated how difficult a task they had assigned to themselves. “There was kind of this naiveté that somehow, if the president said we’re going to close Guantanamo, and we have a plan to close Guantanamo, that ultimately that would happen,” recalled former CIA Director Panetta.

Matthew Olsen, the Justice Department official tasked with determining which prisoners could be transferred from Gitmo and which were too dangerous to release or send to trial, learned this at his first White House meeting on the matter. When he remarked in a Situation Room meeting that this would be an arduous process, a senior White House official impatiently responded: “What’s so hard? Just do one and then multiply by 240.”

Panetta also lays some of the blame directly at the president’s feet for not personally (and relentlessly) engaging Congress on the Gitmo issue. It’s important to remember that early in his presidency, Obama had to hoard his political capital for dealing with the economic crisis while moving ahead with health care reform. Nevertheless, according to Panetta, Obama was unwilling to do the hard, often frustrating, work of engaging Congress to bring it along. “Sometimes he is offended when the political process doesn’t keep up with what he’s trying to do,” Panetta observed in a recent interview, adding that he often urged Obama to invite key members of Congress to the White House for briefings or cocktails, but the president resisted. “In the end you have to be able to engage in that process to be able to build . . . their support for the things you’re trying to do in protecting the country.”

Toward the end of Obama’s first term, the GOP-led Congress had passed legislation barring the use of congressionally appropriated funds to transfer detainees to the U.S. homeland. That meant the 48 detainees that the Obama administration had determined could not be prosecuted for legal reasons and were too dangerous to transfer to other countries or release were stuck at Gitmo. And so was Obama’s policy. He seemed to have given up. He didn’t even have a single official at the White House or any of the relevant agencies assigned to lead the flagging project.

In the spring of 2013, around the time of Obama’s Fort McNair speech, the majority of detainees, more than 100, went on a hunger strike, and as many as 45 had to be force-fed. Gitmo seemed to tug once again at Obama’s conscience. He reinvigorated the effort to get it closed, appointing special representatives at both the State and Defense departments and personally dug into the bureaucracy to prod the time-servers and foot-draggers. The administration accelerated the pace of transfers in a meaningful way, including the use of Periodic Review Boards (PRBs), which allowed the 48 prisoners being held indefinitely to challenge their detention.

This February the administration announced a new plan to close the facility. The problem is, it depends on the Republican-led Congress lifting its ban on transfers to the homeland, something few expect will happen.

Administration officials talk about a “Plan B” should their public plan fail. Some have hinted at the possibility of Obama taking executive action to overcome the congressional ban on transfers to the U.S. While administration allies have argued that choosing where to house detainees captured in a war setting is a “tactical” military decision within the constitutional powers of the commander in chief, many in Congress would view such a move as a naked power grab. It would likely invite comparisons to the controversial legal opinions developed during the Bush administration to justify the use of torture and illegal surveillance. “Obama’s arguments for disregarding the Gitmo restrictions is the same argument the Bush administration used to avoid the torture ban; namely, that Congress cannot restrict the president’s “tactical” decisions as commander in chief,” says Jack Goldsmith, a Harvard law professor and the Justice Department official who withdrew the Bush administration’s opinions on torture and surveillance.

There are creative solutions to solving the Gitmo riddle, including one being circulated by Ken Gude, a senior fellow at the liberal Center for American Progress, who is close to the Obama administration. Under the plan, the administration would continue moving out those who could be transferred, designate a handful of detainees who have violated the laws of other nations for third-party prosecutions and accelerate the Periodic Review Board process. That would still leave about 32 detainees in the camp, including 22 low-level members of al-Qaida and the Taliban. But Gude has a plan for them. He argues that they are no different from the al-Qaida and Taliban foot soldiers whom the U.S. military imprisoned on its base in Bagram, Afghanistan. Once we relinquished Bagram to the Afghans, we turned over those detainees to the sovereign Afghan government. There is no substantive difference between the Bagram prisoners and those being held at Gitmo, Gude argues, so we should turn over those being held at Gitmo to the Afghans. Gude says this would leave only the handful of detainees who are awaiting prosecution in the military justice system, effectively turning Guantanamo into a trial venue rather than a prison camp.

But even Gude sees the scenario as a long shot. Perhaps the administration’s best bet for seeing the camp shuttered is the election of Hillary Clinton as president. As Obama’s secretary of state, Clinton pushed repeatedly for aggressive action to close the military prison. As she was leaving office, she even sent a sharply worded memo the White House chiding Obama’s advisers for failing to do so

For his part, Donald Trump has said he would keep Guantanamo open and “load it up with some bad dudes.” Oh, and he also says he would get Cuba to pay for it.

“After nearly nine years, our war in Iraq ends this month.” That was Obama’s confident message on Dec. 12, 2011, as he proclaimed the fulfillment of his defining 2008 campaign promise to bring American forces home.

Roughly 4 1/2 years later, the president is on track to hand his successor an undeclared but open-ended and escalating war against the Islamic State, with some 5,000 Americans in harm’s way in Iraq and about 500 U.S. special operators in the slaughterhouse that is Syria.

It will be up to the next commander-in-chief to fulfill Obama’s promise to “degrade and destroy” ISIS. Someone will inherit a whole new “our war in Iraq,” as well as the catastrophic Syrian civil war.

Obama’s policy toward Syria and Iraq — and ISIS — has changed along with his evolving sense of threats to U.S. interests. He initially resisted getting involved, started to recalibrate in early 2014 when senior intelligence officials warned that extremists were taking advantage of the chaos to plot attacks on the United States and its allies, sent a first contingent of ground troops to Iraq in June 2014, unleashed airstrikes on ISIS in Iraq in August 2014, and expanded them to Syria in the following month.

Through it all, he has been dogged by criticisms that he was caught flat-footed by the rise of the terrorist group.

“It struck me that I did not see anything that indicated that there was concern about ISIS developing,” Panetta, who served Obama as defense secretary until February 2013, told Yahoo News. “At least from my perspective, it sounds like that somehow the ball was dropped.”

Obama aides dispute that they ever lost track of the threat posed by ISIS, which grew out of al-Qaida in Iraq, formally renamed itself the Islamic State in Iraq and Syria in April 2013, and proclaimed its caliphate in June 2014.

“I did not believe that there was an intelligence failure as it relates to the fact that al-Qaida in Iraq was moving over the border to Syria and they were morphing into something quite dangerous,” Rhodes told Yahoo News. On the other hand, he added, “We did not anticipate, and really I don’t think anybody did, the extent to which the Iraqi security forces would collapse in the face of that. There was no warning of that.”

However, some of Obama’s sharpest critics have directly tied the deadly chaos that fed the rise of ISIS to the president’s decision to withdraw all U.S. forces from Iraq in late 2011.

“President Obama cannot avoid his share of responsibility for the rise of the Islamic State of Iraq and Syria,” Republican Senators John McCain and Lindsey Graham wrote in Sept. 2014.

Obama launched his war against ISIS one month before McCain and Graham’s column. As of April 15, this year, the total cost of military operations was about $7.2 billion, with a daily bill of $11.7 million, according to the Defense Department. As of April 12, the United States and its coalition partners had conducted a total 11,539 strikes — 7,794 in Iraq and 3,745 in Syria. The United States accounted for 8,825 of those in Iraq and 3,518 in Syria. There have been three U.S. combat casualties.

The White House insists that American forces don’t have a combat mission and has ruled out “enduring offensive ground combat operations,” a description that chief Obama spokesman Josh Earnest once described as “intentionally” fuzzy. Asked recently at what point in time American special operators sent to Syria late last year would meet the definition, Earnest suggested that they never would because their numbers are far short of the tens of thousands who invaded Iraq in March 2003.

The war on ISIS has largely proceeded on three fronts: Retaking territory the group captured in Iraq and Syria, preventing terrorist attacks either inspired or directed by the Islamic State against the United States and U.S. allies and taking aim at the group’s adherents and allies in other countries, like Libya.

As for the “destroy” part of “degrade and destroy,” top Obama aides can sketch out the contours of the victory they hope their successor will achieve.

“What it looks like is, do they [ISIS] have a safe haven from which they can plot, free of pressure, or free of enough pressure, so that they can plot, plan, and execute” attacks against the United States, Obama’s homeland security adviser, Lisa Monaco, told Yahoo News in a recent interview.

Asked how he would define victory against ISIS, Rhodes told Yahoo News: “I would define it as ISIL no longer being able to control territory from which it can project terrorist attacks against the United States, our allies and partners.”

Victory won’t be “eradicating every ISIL sympathizer and member off the face of the earth,” Rhodes said.

The night of the 9/11 attacks, with the rubble of the World Trade Center and a shattered side of the Pentagon still smoldering, then-President George W. Bush declared a “war against terrorism.” Two weeks later, he promised that “our cause is just and our ultimate victory is assured.

Bush’s rhetoric is mostly remembered now for decisive statements like those. He came to regret some of them — like saying he wanted Osama bin Laden “dead or alive,” declaring victory in Iraq in front of a giant “Mission Accomplished” banner, or using the religiously loaded word “crusade” to describe the global conflict against terrorists.

But arguably more important was a moment when his trademark certainty wavered. Asked in an August 2004 interview with NBC’s Today Show whether the United States could ever win the global war on terrorism that he had declared after the 9/11 attacks, Bush replied: “I don’t think you can win it.

Instead, he said, “I think you can create conditions so that those who use terror as a tool are less acceptable in parts of the world.”

Republicans winced, Democrats pounced, and within a day Bush was back to promising victory.

He wasn’t the only presidential candidate that year to take heat for adding a shade of gray to a typically black-and-white national debate. Democratic nominee (and future Obama secretary of state) John Kerry told the New York Times two months later that “we have to get back to the place we were, where terrorists are not the focus of our lives, but they’re a nuisance.”

Citing his experience as a former prosecutor, Kerry told the Times: “I know we’re never going to end prostitution. We’re never going to end illegal gambling. But we’re going to reduce it, organized crime, to a level where it isn’t on the rise. It isn’t threatening people’s lives every day, and fundamentally, it’s something that you continue to fight, but it’s not threatening the fabric of your life.”

Democrats winced, Republicans pounced, and soon Kerry was sounding more like Bush.

Ten years after Bush and Kerry’s experiences, Obama had one of his own brushes with politically risky nuance. At a Sept. 3, 2014, press conference with Estonia’s president, Obama laid out his vision for how to defeat the Islamic State.

“If we are joined by the international community, we can continue to shrink ISIL’s sphere of influence, its effectiveness, its financing, its military capabilities to the point where it is a manageable problem,” he said.

Republicans accused him of sending a mixed message: Can the United States set a goal to “degrade and destroy” ISIS but be content with making it “a manageable problem.”

When it comes to terrorism, can Americans do nuance?

“I actually think Americans can,” Rhodes said. But “it’s easier politically sometimes to use more maximalist rhetoric because it’s more satisfying to people — that we’re going to wipe them off the face of the earth, eradicate them for all time,” he added.

Bush’s “rhetoric was so ambitious that it was almost like just knocking over the Taliban wasn’t sufficient, that [it led to] the types of policies that we would have not [otherwise] engaged in, be it the war in Iraq or the opening of Gitmo or the employment of enhanced interrogation techniques,” Rhodes said. “It was almost a logical end of the type of rhetoric that was being used, in that if you are using a certain type of maximalist rhetoric with the public, you in some ways are raising the bar on yourself to do more things.”

Obama’s Republican critics, like Sen. Ted Cruz, have criticized the president’s refusal to describe America’s enemy as “radical Islamic terrorism,” charging that he is out of touch. Cruz has also demanded that Obama take “decisive action for victory over evil” and that ISIS to be “utterly destroyed.”

Obama aides express frustration at the notion that the United States can wipe out every last ISIS adherent. They are also mindful that yesterday’s boast can come back to haunt them, the way Obama’s confident reelection campaign message that “al-Qaida is on the run” did after extremists assaulted U.S. facilities in Benghazi in September 2012, killing four Americans.

With Obama’s reelection safely in the rear-view mirror, the White House now is echoing the more nuanced language that once got Bush in trouble on the Today show, and Kerry in his interview with the Times.

“I don’t think you’re ever going to eliminate the use of terrorism,” Rhodes said. “There will be people who murder other people who are innocent for political purposes for the rest of human history.”

To the extent that there can be an end to what Bush dubbed “the global war on terrorism,” Rhodes explained, it will require things in America’s hands and also some well outside of U.S. control — and it may take decades.

“There has to be, number one, a sufficient defensive and deterrent effect so that it is understood that if you self-identify as a terrorist organization at war with the United States that you’re likely to be killed,” he said.

But the second thing that must happen is for Middle Eastern governments to find ways to address “grievance and dissent” so that anger does not turn into a “nihilistic war against the world.”

Rhodes pointed to Northern Ireland and said “cultural shifts” led the Irish Republican Army to abandon terrorist tactics.

“There has to be a similar evolution in … the Middle East.”

………. END OF ARTICLE ……….

 2 comments

Ken Johnson · May 24, 2016 – 12:32 AM · Reply

All this worry, worry, worry, for nothing. The Government does not interfere with the people or man or woman, don’t believe me, look at any code or ordinance, such as the vehicle code or penal code, notice, they never say Law. You will find only persons “shall” (future tense term) do this or that. The codes do not apply to the people or man.
A code will never “stand” in court, it has no vocal cords.
Go out an play and stop worrying. Just remind your public servants you are man and they are a man and all men are free and independent…

JohnHenryHill · May 25, 2016 – 9:59 AM · Reply

Ken, May 25, 2016

Thank you for reading this brief essay on my web site AND for YOUR COMMENT!!!

If you look in any good LAW dictionary (Black’s 4th Edition or earlier OR Bouvier’s from about 1852 or so), you will find that the words “SHALL” and “MUST” in law actually mean “MAY”. – as in you “may” or “may not” choose to obey a legislated act (statute) or any of its offspring (regulations, by-laws, etc.) And the word “REQUIRE” in law actually means “REQUEST”. A CODE is simply a collection of statutes. (These definitions are left out of more “modern” law dictionaries, for obvious political reasons – but those terms were well understood by the Founders and the people in America and Britain from the early 1600’s until about the 1860’s, changing ever so slowly over time. BUT even the U.S. Supreme Court has recently issued rulings affirming the definitions I presented here!!!! (They are just not covered by the mainstream media.) And they most certainly are NOT taught in American law schools!!!!

In short, you are CORRECT.

As I stated in my brief article, legislated acts (statutes) and their offspring are merely “OFFERS TO CONTRACT”, which (as is true for ALL contracts) one may agree to or not agree to. The “catch” is that the states and U.S. government (especially the courts) make the PRESUMPTION that you have AGREED to their contract (statute), thereby giving them JURISDICTION over you. And the ancient Maxims of Law still applies today: “A presumption NOT rebutted stands as the Truth.” and “Silence is consent.” After I learned all this stuff for my Ph.D. in the political history of British and American law, I NEVER went to go court without submitting to the court a written, notarized AFFIDAVIT (submitted in-person to the Clerk of the Court, who stamps 2 copies – 1 for the judge and my own copy; the Clerk of the Court MUST accept it if you write on it “Submitted on Demand”) rebutting all such presumptions by the court, along with a list of MY definitions to be used in the case. In the affidavit, I give the court seven (7) days to respond – and if it does NOT respond within those 7 days, then BY DEFAULT the court has agreed with me and accepted everything in my affidavit as the truth in the law of the case. Maxims of Law: “An unrebutted affidavit stands as the truth in Law.” and “He, who does not object, consents.”

(It is easy to do: only the first page of the affidavit gets changed in a few places. The rest, such as Maxims of Law, my definitions, etc., stay the same.) The court will almost NEVER respond with a rebuttal of my affidavit within those 7 days, it has AGREED to everything in my affidavit – so it (the state and the judge) have LOST by default. IF I decide to appear in court (which is almost NEVER), I have a notarized, stamped-by-the-Court-Clerk, copy of this affidavit. The judge can NOT ignore it, for he will be subject to criminal and civil actions if he does so. Further, I can turn this affidavit into an “International Commercial Lien” (explained in another article on my web site) thereby “freezing” ALL his current and future assets for 99 years (or forever if I place it in a trust). And if I register this Lien with the U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC), it becomes a “negotiable instrument” which I can sell to any investor, investment bank, etc. Since my Liens are typically for $50 Million and a buyer will usually offer between 1-2% of this nominal value, that means I just made $500,000 to $1 Million tax-free dollars. And NO COURT in the world can over-turn this Lien, since it is created by a non-judicial process in which there was NO controversy (recall that, by not responding with his own “notarized affidavit of rebuttal”, the judge has ALREADY AGREED with everything in my original affidavit) – and where there is NO controversy, NO court may assume jurisdiction!!! And if one does appear in court, let your DOCUMENTS do all the “talking” – NEVER say anything more! If pressed by the judge to “explain” something, just say, “It is ALL explained in the documents submitted, so I have absolutely nothing to add.” And do NOT swear any OATH in court, since that negates your documents and gives the judge jurisdiction over you. Remember the Maxim of Law, “An oath is a contract in law.” And at this point, you do NOT want to create a new contract with the court by swearing an oath!

Do NOT expect lawyers (except for International Commercial Lien specialists) or lower-court judges to know this stuff, since it is never taught in U.S. law schools. But a judge on the Appeals Court level will often know about it; and most definitely a judge on a state or federal supreme court. Lastly, if ANYONE tries to interfere with this Lien, that person may be easily added to the Lien by simply writing his name, title, address and brief description of what he did onto the back of the Lien – so ALL his assets get “frozen” also and he then also owes me $50 Million!!!

One can “beat the system” IF one knows the system – and then use the system against “the powers that be”. I have used “International Commercial Liens” on 6 people (all U.S. officials); and won EVERY time! (This is in another article on this web site about “DONUTS, etc”.) And I NEVER paid for any out-of-state traffic ticket, parking ticket, etc – only those in Massachusetts because my drivers license was a CONTRACT with the state.

By the way, I now live most of the year in Ukraine or Crimea – so I no longer have to deal with courts in the U.S.

Best wishes! JHH

Extra Stuff:

After the ratification of the original (“organic”) “The Constitution for the united States of America”, written in plain English for all to understand, the courts, Congress and people accepted as FACTS OF LAW that the people as individuals were the sovereigns of the Union states, the various states were viewed as separate “foreign countries with respect to each other and with respect the United States”; and most almost all legislated acts (statutes; from which regulations were written) applied ONLY to employees and agents of the U.S. government. The Congress had jurisdiction only over Washington City, as the seat of the federal government, federal Territories, federal forts and naval stations within a state; and federal buildings within a state, usually federal Post offices. Federal statutes applied to people living in one of the sovereign states ONLY if that individual man CONSENTED to that particular statute. The federal courts existed solely to settle disputes between states; and disputes between people from two different states.

..at the Revolution, the sovereignty devolved on the people; and they are truly the sovereigns of the country, but they are sovereigns without subjects…with none to govern but themselves….. [CHISHOLM v. GEORGIA (US) 2 Dall 419, 454, 1 L Ed 440, 455 @DALL (1793) pp471-472.]

“There is no such thing as a power of inherent sovereignty in the government of the United States …. In this country sovereignty resides in the people, and Congress can exercise no power which they have not, by their Constitution entrusted to it: All else is withheld.” — Julliard v. Greenman, 110 U.S. 421..

The people of this State, as the successors of its former sovereign, are entitled to all the rights which formerly belonged to the King by his prerogative. [Lansing v. Smith, 4 Wend. 9 (N.Y.) (1829), 21 Am.Dec. 89 10C Const. Law Sec. 298; 18 C Em.Dom. Sec. 3, 228; 37 C Nav.Wat. Sec. 219; Nuls Sec. 167; 48 C Wharves Sec. 3, 7.]

“It will be admitted on all hands that with the exception of the powers granted to the states and the federal government, through the Constitutions, the people of the several states are unconditionally sovereign within their respective states.“ ~ Ohio L. Ins. & T. Co. v. Debolt, 16 How. 416, 14 L.Ed. 997 (1854)

“Our government is founded upon compact [contract]. Sovereignty was, and is, in the people“ — Glass v. Sloop Betsey, U.S. Supreme Court, 1794.

Even Alexander Hamilton (1st Secretary of the Treasury under President George Washington) and one of the most ardent advocates for a strong central government wrote, “Necessity and expediency are NOT legitimate excuses for violating the Constitution you swore to uphold and protect – even during a ‘crisis’“.

“The Constitution for the united States of America”, written in plain English for all to understand, the courts, Congress and people accepted as FACTS OF LAW that the people as individuals were the sovereigns of the Union states, “the various states are separate foreign countries with respect to each other and with respect to the United States” (from various U.S. Supreme Court rulings)

5-10-2016 8-55-33 AM

 

How to Defeat Tyranny: Active Disobedience

September 21st, 2016 by

https://johnhenryhill.wordpress.com/2015/02/02/how-to-defeat-tyranny-active-disobedience/

 

by JohnHenryHill

How to Defeat Tyranny: Active Disobedience

We Are All Voluntary Slaves: A Lesson on How to Defeat Tyranny

by John-Henry Hill, M.D.

JohnHenryHill@Yahoo.com

http://JohnHenryHill.Wordpress.com

 “If we ever pass out as a great nation we ought to put on our tombstone, ‘America died from a delusion that she has moral leadership.’”  – Will Rogers (1879-1935) American Humorist, Actor and Author

Necessity and expediency are NOT legitimate excuses for violating the Constitution you swore to uphold and protect – even during a ‘crisis’” – Alexander Hamilton (1st Secretary of the Treasury under President George Washington)

“The only purpose for which power can be rightfully exercised over any member of a civilized community, against his will, is to prevent harm to others. His own good, either physical or moral, is not a sufficient warrant.John Stuart Mill (1806-1873), Economist and Political Philosopher, [On Liberty (1859) 1977:220]

“Whenever you find yourself on the side of the majority, it is time to pause and reflect.” Mark Twain (Samuel Langhorne Clemens)

Power concedes nothing without a demand. It never did and it never will. Find out just what any people will quietly submit to and you have found out the exact measure of injustice and wrong which will be imposed upon them, and these will continue till they are resisted with either words or blows, or with both. The limits of tyrants are prescribed by the endurance of those whom they oppress.”Frederick Douglass

“The notion that a radical is one who hates his country is naive and usually idiotic. He is, more likely, one who likes his country more than the rest of us, and is thus more disturbed than the rest of us when he sees it debauched. He is not a bad citizen turning to crime; he is a good citizen driven to despair.”  Henry L. Mencken (1880-1956), Journalist and Author

We are reluctant to admit that we owe our liberties to men of a type that today we HATE and FEAR — unruly men, disturbers of the peace, men who resent and denounce what Whitman called ‘the insolence of elected persons’ – in word, free men…” Gerald W. Johnson (1890-1980), American Journalist and Author

Rightful liberty is unobstructed action according to our will within limits drawn around us by the equal rights of others. I do not add ‘within the law,’ because law is often but the tyrant’s will, and always so when it violates the rights of the individual.”  —  Thomas Jefferson

“Plus ça change, plus c’est la même chose.” The more things change, the more they stay the same.

THE PROBLEM

We have all become “Voluntary Slaves” to systems of government and social institutions we dislike, to greater or lesser degrees. To ancient Romans the word “system” referred to the city sewers, so we today live in a government sewer. Not that we knowingly and willingly volunteered to do so; we merely acquiesce – we “go along”. It is the world into which we were born. In the film “The Truman Show with actor Jim Carrey, the show’s director explained why Truman, whose entire life has been broadcast as a TV show, never questioned the authenticity of his world: We all accept the world we are born into – it’s as simple as that.” But like the Truman (True Man) character, we all sense that something is wrong. Our reason and inherent common sense – what many call a “gut feeling” – tell us that the system is corrupt and unjust. If only we would listen to our inner voice of reason!

Who among us would pay the numerous and ever-increasing taxes and fees that are levied by our governments if we were not forced to do so under threats of fines and imprisonment – or worse? What American is not afraid of the IRS, even though all the federal income taxes collected are deposited by the Secretary of the Treasury into a privately-owned corporation in Puerto Rico and thereafter distributed among foreign creditors of the U.S. government to pay for the interest (and ONLY the interest) on America’s national debt. Who would willingly pay to huge corporations the inflated prices demanded for such basic necessities of life as food, electricity, water and fuel to heat our homes? We are further required, under the same threats of violence, to obey statutes, codes and regulations (so-called “laws”) created at the arbitrary whims of our rulers and which we find ridiculous and even hurtful to us. If you were driving your child to the hospital during a life-threatening emergency and came to a very long “red” traffic light on a deserted road, would you wait until the light turned “green”? By all logic waiting for the “green” light, thereby risking your child’s life, makes no sense – it defies reason and our innate common sense! (I am reminded of a cartoon of many years ago where a man sitting on a camel in the middle of a bleak desert waits at a traffic light – a similar scene was in Mel Brooks’ comedy-western film, “Blazing Saddles”, in which a posse on horseback are stopped at a toll-gate in the middle of nowhere. Instead of simply riding around the toll-gate, the character played by actor Slim Pickens shouts, “Somebody go back to town and get a shitload of dimes!”) But there are many among us who would wait – in fact most people will wait. As “law-abiding Americans”, most people would not even think of ignoring the traffic light – and the few people who did ignore it would feel guilty for doing so! Why? Because it is the “law”? Because we should instead seek redress through the courts within our “justice system”, a device clearly controlled by the government rulers?  Is it some type of “herd mentality” that controls our behavior and even our thoughts? In short, why do we obey any government when its demands are arbitrary, excessive, hurtful and defy common sense?

I am a retired physician and medical researcher, so I have a lot of time to indulge in reading everything I come across on the Internet regarding politics, law and history. Not that I am smart – I simply do not like to watch football, etc. on TV. It was only recently that I stumbled upon a brief essay that “explained it all” in fewer than 25 pages. Surprisingly, although it was written by a law-philosophy student in France in 1552, it applies to our political institutions today. It is called, The Discourse on Voluntary Servitude by Etienne De La Boetie.

Boetie said there are three types of tyrants: those that rule by conquest or force of arms, those that rule by inheritance (royalty) and those that rule through elections by the people. Of these he felt that an elected leader was the most tyrannical since he never wishes to relinquish his power, even though required to do so upon completion of his term of office. Having tasted power, few men in government wish to yield that power. Today in America we change presidents, senators and representative (not to mention state and local leaders) every few years, but our governments continue their maltreatment of the people regardless of which political party gains power. Why do We the People tolerate this servitude and often even misery?

“That so many men, so many villages, so many cities, so many nations, sometimes suffer under a single tyrant who has no other power than the power they give him; who is able to harm them only to the extent to which they have the willingness to bear with him; who could do them absolutely no injury unless they preferred to put up with him rather than contradict him.”

Boetie’s asserted that we tolerate this voluntary servitude by custom and habit. A “Man from Mars” might wonder, How could one man (or small group of men) possibly rule with such maltreatment such great numbers of people? Or as Boetie said, “Who could really believe that one man alone may mistreat a hundred thousand and deprive them of their liberty? When not a hundred, not a thousand men, but a hundred provinces, a thousand cities, a million men, refuse to assail a single man from whom the kindest treatment received is the infliction of serfdom and slavery, what shall we call that? Is it cowardice?” Boetie’s answer was “No”, it was simply that people were accustomed to condition, as were their fathers, grandfathers and so on. “Two, possibly ten, may fear one [man]; but when a thousand, a million men, a thousand cities, fail to protect themselves against the domination of one man, this cannot be called cowardly, for cowardice does not sink to such a depth, any more than valor can be termed the effort of one individual to scale a fortress, to attack an army, or to conquer a kingdom. What monstrous vice, then, is this which does not even deserve to be called cowardice, a vice for which no term can be found vile enough, which nature herself disavows and our tongues refuse to name?” The masses of people become slaves through custom and habit, reinforced by their leader’s exploitation of the people’s own apathy, indifference and laziness. The main reason we so willingly take orders from authority is that we are born submissive serfs, reared as submissive serfs, educated to remain submissive serfs and trained to work as submissive serfs.

THE METHODS

What tools does a leader or government use to keep us in servitude? It is obvious that one man cannot control all the people by himself. The ruler must have the assistance of some of the people among us: first are the ruling elite, followed by a large bureaucracy. the police and a military – each created in hierarchical fashion of rank and class with corresponding levels of rewards. These organizations of servants must be ever-enlarging; not to accomplish anything of substance, but simply to make more and more people dependent on government for their livelihood and status. The police and military cannot exist solely for the protection of the rulers, since history has proved repeatedly that no ruler is truly safe; that if a ruler is greatly despised, he can be deposed or assassinated without much effort (usually by someone in his inner circle). “The torment in which tyrants find themselves when obliged to fear everyone because they do evil unto every man … not daring to entrust weapons in the hands of their own people, whom they have wronged.”

The servants closest to the ruler, the ruling elite (both in and out of government), remain few in number and are controlled by means of what Boetie called “special privileges and large gifts”. Boetie ironically noted: “Men accept servility in order to acquire wealth; as if they could acquire anything of their own when they cannot even assert that they belong to themselves, or as if anyone could possess under a tyrant a single thing in his own name. Yet they act as if their wealth really belonged to them, and forget that it is they themselves who give the ruler the power to deprive everybody of everything, leaving nothing that anyone can identify as belonging to somebody.” Within this ruling elite (most of whom are usually not even formal members of the ruler’s government) are “only four or five who maintain the dictator, four or five who keep the country in bondage to him. Five or six have always had access to his ear, and have either gone to him of their own accord, or else have been summoned by him, to be accomplices in his cruelties, companions in his pleasures, panders to his lusts, and sharers in his plunders. These six manage their chief so successfully that he comes to be held accountable not only for his own misdeeds but even for theirs.” Under the authority of the ruling elite next come the bureaucrats, police and military. Boetie observed: “The six [ruling elites] have six hundred who profit under them, and with the six hundred they do what they have accomplished with their tyrant. The six hundred maintain under them six thousand, whom they promote in rank, upon whom they confer the government of provinces or the direction of finances, in order that they may serve as instruments of avarice and cruelty, executing orders at the proper time and working such havoc all around that they could not last except under the shadow of the six hundred, nor be exempt from law and punishment except through their influence. The consequence of all this is fatal indeed. And whoever is pleased to unwind the skein will observe that not the six thousand but a hundred thousand, and even millions, cling to the tyrant by this cord to which they are tied.”

Obviously the ruling elite and those we today call “public servants” must be paid their “special privileges and large gifts” – some might say, bribes – to maintain their allegiance to the ruler and his government. These gifts from the ruler – extracted from the masses of people – may come as pay, tax breaks and grants. Some among the masses of people often receive gifts as well: welfare, food stamps, and the too-numerous-to-count government programs giving people something for “FREE”, even though the people themselves ultimately pay for it! “Tyrants would distribute largess, a bushel of wheat, a gallon of wine, and a sesterce [an ancient Roman coin]: and then everybody would shamelessly cry, “Long live the King!” The fools did not realize that they were merely recovering a portion of their own property, and that their ruler could not have given them what they were receiving without having first taken it from them … the mob has always behaved in this way — eagerly open to bribes that cannot be honorably accepted.” Clearly, we ALL want “our share” of the government pie – a pie we ourselves provided to government!

However, the ruler system creates universal anxiety. The ruler can have no friends; he can never fully trust anyone or feel completely secure in his power. ”The fact is that the tyrant is never truly loved, nor does he love… there can be no friendship where there is cruelty, where there is disloyalty, where there is injustice.” The ancients wrote: To rule as king is to be alone. Today we say: “It is lonely at the top.” The ruling elite live under similar anxieties as the ruler – “in places where the wicked gather there is conspiracy only, not companionship: these have no affection for one another; fear alone holds them together; they are not friends, they are merely accomplices.” Yet who among us would not accept these “special privileges and large gifts” from the ruler? After all, why work for a living when you can obtain wealth and status with little or no effort? “These wretches see the glint of the despot’s treasures and are bedazzled by the radiance of his splendor. Drawn by this brilliance they come near, without realizing they are approaching a flame that cannot fail to scorch them.” Only later do the ruling elite understand fully that the ruler, upon his mere whim, can take from them all they possess. ”The favorites of a tyrant can never feel entirely secure, and the less so because he [the ruler] has learned from them that he is all powerful and unlimited by any law or obligation.” Even if a member of the ruling elite manages to remain in the good graces of the current ruler, what about the ruler’s successor – the next president, prime minister, king, queen, or dictator? How can any person, even among the highest of the ruling elite, ever feel truly secure in his and his family’s wealth and status now or in the future? “Even admitting that favorites may at times escape from the hands of him they serve, they are never safe from the ruler who comes after him. If he is good, they must render an account of their past and recognize at last that justice exists; if he is bad and resembles their late master, he [the next ruler] will certainly have his own favorites, who are not usually satisfied to occupy in their turn merely the posts of their predecessors, but will more often insist on their wealth and their lives.” Of course, the great lie underpinning our system is that we own nothing – our government can take our property on a whim. Even if you have fully paid off the mortgage on your home, simply look at the deed and you will see that you are probably listed as a “tenant-in-common” with “fee simple” title or “title in equity” – and a tenant is someone who pays rent and taxes. A true owner with “allodial” title pays no rent or taxes. As the actor Peter Fonda stated, “Try not paying your taxes and find out who owns your house.”

In addition to gifts and privileges to his ruling elite, the ruler employs another tool. He creates and maintains a remoteness from the people, thereby creating a mystique and aura of the leader being “special” simply by being inaccessible to the public masses. “The earliest kings of Egypt rarely showed themselves without carrying a cat, or sometimes a branch, or appearing with fire on their heads, masking themselves with these objects and parading like workers of magic. By doing this they inspired their subjects with reverence and admiration … It is pitiful to review the list of devices that early despots used to establish their tyranny; to discover how many little tricks they employed, always finding the populace conveniently gullible.” Tyrants and despots have “always fooled their victims so easily that, while mocking them, they enslaved them the more.” Today when a president, a queen or a prime minister goes out in public, the remoteness is maintained: they travel in limousines with darkly-tinted windows and near which the masses are not allowed. Even when simply playing golf, a president and the people are kept apart. And on rare occasions when the ruler is seen by the people, his appearance is an occasion of great ceremony, accompanied by symbols and pageantry. Today we have ceremonies such as royal coronations, presidential inaugurations, state-of-the-union speeches and proclamations to the nation – all on prime-time TV. The symbols of the ruler’s specialness” appear: the presidential seal, a king or queen’s crown and throne, flags, ornate offices and buildings, monuments and statues. His servants address the ruler by such titles as the “Leader of the Free World”, “Mr. President”, “Her Majesty the Queen” or “His Eminence The Pope” – and in turn the ruling elite are addressed by such titles as Senator, Congressman, Mr. Chief Justice, CEO of XYZ corporation, Chairman of the Federal Reserve, Secretary of the ABC Department, Ambassador and so on. After all, without a title, you must be a “nobody” – just one of the people.

Even when simply traveling the ruler, whose life is somehow deemed of greater value than ours, uses special transportation: the president’s plane “Air Force One”, the royal carriage, the royal yacht, the presidential helicopter, not to mention the gaggle of limousines surrounded by hordes of police, “Secret Service” and innumerable security vehicles. Upon arriving at the ceremony, special guards (usually outfitted in ridiculously ornate uniforms) stand to salute the ruler, while offering no real protection – they are part of the show! Visualize, if you will, the queen’s Royal Guards at Buckingham Palace in London. Or the almost clownish formality of the guards at the Tomb of the Unknown Soldier in Arlington National Cemetery in Virginia – why are they wearing such ornate costumes while guarding dead people? Boetie noted, “Whoever thinks that halberds, sentries, the placing of the watch, serve to protect and shield tyrants is, in my judgment, completely mistaken. These are used, it seems to me, more for ceremony and a show of force than for any reliance placed in them.” Some rulers even encourage the development of a cult-like admiration, often extending into myth and religion such as “the divine right of kings”, the myths about George Washington and Abraham Lincoln, and the god-like status of the later Egyptian pharaohs. Boetie observed: “Tyrants themselves have wondered that men could endure the persecution of a single man; they have insisted on using religion for their own protection and, where possible, have borrowed a stray bit of divinity to bolster up their evil ways.”

In a well-informed and enlightened society, the tools described above could not long maintain a ruler’s tyranny, for eventually the people will become disenchanted, less productive – and even may question the injustice of the system under which they live and challenge the authority of the government. The ruler cannot allow this to happen. Thousands of years ago rulers learned that entertainment and amusements divert the people’s attention away from truly important issues affecting their lives. Boetie noted: “Plays, farces, spectacles, gladiators, strange beasts, medals, pictures, and other such opiates, these were for ancient peoples the bait toward slavery, the price of their liberty, the instruments of tyranny.” Over thousands of years not much has changed – today we have our mass-media, professional sports, TV, computer games, alcohol and drugs, activities, pastimes and pleasures that keep us too busy to notice, much less act upon, the public issues which so greatly affect our lives. By our many entertainments (may I call them “circuses”?) and diversions we are truly similar to the peoples of centuries past. “By these practices and enticements the ancient dictators so successfully lulled their subjects under the yoke, that the stupefied peoples, fascinated by the pastimes and vain pleasures flashed before their eyes, learned subservience as naively, but not so creditably, as little children learn to read by looking at bright picture books.”

Ancient rulers also understood the truth in the adage “Divide and Conquer”. They recognized the importance of distracting and dividing the people by income, race and class differences, and through political affiliations (parties). Boetie: “Thus the despot subdues his subjects, some of them by means of others, and thus is he protected by those from whom, if they were decent men, he would have to guard himself; just as, in order to split wood, one has to use a wedge of the wood itself.” To ensure that the masses of people, in their misery and oppression, never challenge the authority of the ruler, the ruler must deflect all blame onto some of his servants, including the ruling elite and the bureaucracy; OR onto forces and peoples outside his kingdom or government – foreigners. The ruler also blames those who challenge his policies, applying such labels as malcontents, hippies, trouble makers, protesters, conspiracy theorists, home-grown terrorists, etc. Likewise the ruler blames foreign rulers and foreign peoples for the misery that he himself created among the masses of his own people – even to the extent of starting wars. The successful ruler will deflect all blame from himself in order that ”the people never blame the tyrant for the evils they suffer, but they do place responsibility on those who influence him; peoples, nations, all compete with one another, even the peasants, even the tillers of the soil, in mentioning the names of the favorites, in analyzing their vices, and heaping upon them a thousand insults, a thousand obscenities, a thousand maledictions. All their prayers, all their vows are directed against these persons; they hold them accountable for all their misfortunes, their pestilences, their famines.” Meanwhile the tyrant remains safely in power.

Past rulers also recognized the power behind money, even “fake money” created by the ruler himself as paper currency or coins of otherwise worthless metals. As Boetie stated, “What comment can I make concerning another fine counterfeit that ancient peoples accepted as true money?” Boetie wondered by what magic a piece of paper, a coin of worthless metal or a piece of wood (English “tally stick”) obtain real value? Boetie queried, “They [the people] believed firmly that the great toe of Pyrrhus, king of Epirus, performed miracles and cured diseases … In this wise that a foolish people itself invents lies and then believes them.” Does an otherwise worthless object obtain its value simply because the ruler has decreed this paper, metal or wood to be the only form of money acceptable as payment for taxes? By definition, something of “real value” is something upon which people place value because of its utility, something they need and can use in their daily lives. Otherwise, why would any people possessing reason and common sense accept as money objects possessing no real usefulness? Such trinkets are NOT money – they are, at most, convenient tokens for mere promises to pay you something of REAL usefulness at a later date. Can you say “Federal Reserve note”, today’s official U.S. Dollar?

Finally, among the most useful tools employed by tyrants and governments are propaganda and speeches, the “power of persuasion” through the manipulation of words evoking passion instead of reason within the people. As Boetie observed in 1552, rulers and governments of all types “do not behave very differently: they never undertake an unjust policy, even one of some importance, without prefacing it with some pretty speech concerning public welfare and common good.”

THE SOLUTION

The important question now becomes: How can we escape this voluntary servitude? Or, are we Americans are fond of saying, How can we get government off our backs? In early America our ancestors modeled their society and governments on Christian principles whereby their God, as the creator of all things including man, was the Sovereign and Master of all things, including man. Likewise, man was the sovereign and master of all things he created. Consequently, in America, We the People, as the creators of our local state and federal governments and institutions, were considered the sovereigns and masters of those governments and institutions. As with God, no master or sovereign serves his subjects, else he ceases to be master and sovereign. Until the early 20th century We the People were considered as master and sovereign over our creation: the government. I have attempted to explain how today this relationship has been turned on its head – how the people are now expected to obey every command issued by our supposed servants, the government. Indeed, many Americans today are grateful that the governments seize only 60 percent of their income as taxes and fees! Elections most certainly have made no improvements, despite the promises made every 4 years! – the extortion by government and misery of We the People increase relentlessly. But is a violent revolution really necessary to rid ourselves of the tyranny? If violent action were required, Boetie knew that most men would not participate since they are not men of action; they dislike the time and effort involved and the risk of losing whatever little they possess. In the 20th century the common adage was, “You can’t beat city hall.” Boetie concluded that not only was violent action not required, no action at all is required – only non-action through non-compliance. He wrote, “Obviously there is no need of fighting to overcome this single tyrant, for he is automatically defeated if the country refuses consent to its own enslavement: it is not necessary to deprive him of anything, but simply to give him nothing; there is no need that the country make an effort to do anything for itself provided it does nothing against itself.” Boetie, unlike most Americans today, recognized the important distinction between a country (the people) and a government (the ruler and the ruling elite).

Boetie implored, “Resolve to serve no more, and you are at once freed. I do not ask that you place hands upon the tyrant to topple him over, but simply that you support him no longer; then you will behold him, like a great Colossus whose pedestal has been pulled away, fall of his own weight and break in pieces.”

CONCLUSIONS

If you do not like what the government does, simply refuse to cooperate. You do not like paying taxes, fees and fines? Then do not pay them! You do not like having to constantly renew this or that license or registration or permit or whatever? Then do not renew them! You do not like paying for parking and traffic tickets? Then ignore them – toss them into the trash! Of course some people might object. “What if EVERYONE did that?” My answers are: 1) Great! Then we would have less government bothering us and stealing our money. 2.) If “everyone did that”, then you would be a fool NOT to do likewise, if it is in your own best interest. I have little hope for the current generations of adults – we are too bound up in our own indulgences, pastimes and apathy; too bound by custom and habit. The motto of adult Americans appears to be: “As it is now, so must it be forever.” My hope lies with those who are too young to have been indoctrinated, distracted or “bought off” by the rulers. Not because they are more courageous than we, but because they will experience such hardship and misery in the coming years that they will not tolerate our rulers and system of government any longer – that they will rebel, not with the sword, but by simple non-cooperation. There is no need for violent revolution; no need even to walk the streets carrying a protest sign. As Boetie concluded centuries ago, they need only resolve to serve no more: to refuse to pay taxes and fees and fines, to refuse to obey so-called “laws” that violate our own powers of reason and common sense. They will cease ALL cooperation with government in any manner; and at once they will be freed.

Now, turn off your computer and go watch the football game on TV!

2-6-2015 10-13-51 AM

Me and Walter Cronkite

September 20th, 2016 by

http://www.paulstramer.net/2016/09/me-and-walter-cronkite.html

12-21-2015 3-19-06 PM

By Anna Von Reitz,

We got a real television (not the hopelessly grainy eyeball model) when I was four years old.  This black and white picture was also grainy, but you could see the faces clearly.  One of the first faces I became familiar with as a toddler and young child was Walter Cronkite

While other four year-olds were watching Huckleberry Hound and Mighty Mouse with religious devotion, I watched Walter. Every night.  Without fail.  I’d put on my Dale Evans cowgirl hat and red leather cowboy boots and mount my hobby horse sitting in front of the television and watch with morbid fascination.

I remember the Nixon v. Kennedy Debates and there aren’t too many people my age who have a clear recollection of that.

Like many Americans, I loved Walter. He had such a comforting voice and his dark, serious, but often gently amused eyes seemed to be looking straight into mine on many important occasions.

Of course, I trusted Walter.  Who didn’t?  So it came as a terrible shock to learn that he was lying to me!  Yes, Walter Cronkite was lying about all sorts of things and when I first discovered that, well, it was worse than learning the truth about Santa Claus.  Much worse.

It was worse because Santa was just a fictional character. Walter Cronkite was real. 

And he was lying about what happened to President Kennedy. 

Any fool, even a seven year-old, knew what happened in Dallas that day in November,1963.  Anyone who saw the television footage of the assassination knew what direction the bullet was coming from and nobody needed the Warren Commission to tell us any more lies about it.

We didn’t need the scapegoat, Lee Harvey Oswald.  We didn’t need Jack Ruby doing his final mafia hit. 

LBJ and his cronies killed JFK to make way for the war profiteering of Vietnam, the seduction of the States with “federal block grants”, to spool up the reign of the oil industry, and keep the central banks happy.

And there was Walter Cronkite, speaking in his calm, deliberate, serious, caring way, lying through his teeth about what was perfectly obvious to the naked eye. I was confused.  Heart-broken.  Severely disillusioned.  I was seven and one of my heroes was revealed to be a fraud.

So when 911 happened, the first words out of my mouth were, “Where is this Techni-Color Hollywood – quality newsfeed coming from?”

If 911 wasn’t a set-up, we’d be seeing jiggling shots taken by astonished tourists from three blocks away, grainy security camera footage from banks and hotels up and down the street—–but no, we saw 911 happen from every possible angle, in high definition color.  It was a set-up.  It was obviously a set-up.  Just like the Kennedy murder.

And just like the Kennedy murder, Bush assigned a “Blue Ribbon Committee” to white wash it and come up with fanciful excuses for it, and because the American People have trusted what they thought of as “their government” instead of their foreign vendors, they choked it down.  They were confused. They were patriotic.  They didn’t know what to think.

Well, I am telling you what the evidence shows.

The private, mostly foreign-owned governmental services corporation run by G.W. Bush and Dick Cheney murdered 3,000 innocent people from around the world with malice aforethought.  Their pals collected billions of dollars of insurance money instead of having to pay for the demolition of asbestos polluted office buildings.  Tons of gold bullion were stolen to pay for quasi-military black ops, mostly in support of the oil industry in the Mideast and the whole crappola war and take over in Iraq.  And hundreds of millions of records proving that the “government” corporation defrauded Americans were destroyed.

So you see, I knew 911 was a fraud and a false-flag and a set up from the first moments of news coverage I saw, and I didn’t need any scientific evidence, no thermite residue, no architectural and engineering analysis.  All I needed was the memory of Walter Cronkite shining me on about the Kennedy murder, and the fact that the 911 event was covered from all angles by professional movie crews.

I already told you all about why I stopped watching television news altogether (except for the weather report) in 1989 but let’s repeat.  I did a little experiment and kept track of how many stories had to do with sex and how many had to do with death and how many had to do with sex and death, both.  And I concluded that the actual useful news accounted for only about 5% of what was presented as “news” every night —- mostly the weather report. 

So my advice to everyone is — don’t believe a word the talking heads say and don’t be surprised or disappointed when Tom Brokaw admits that he doesn’t know a thing about the news stories he is parroting.  Journalism in this country died with the gag-orders imposed by the federal government corporation during World War II and ever since, with very, very rare exceptions that always result in lost careers—we have lived with a government controlled news media that is essentially just a giant propaganda machine designed to scare us and sell stuff to us by turns.

Turn the knob, push the button—- “Off!” — and start looking with your own eyes and listening with your own ears. It’s the only way you are ever going to know what is going on.

See this article and over 300 others on Anna’s website here:www.annavonreitz.com

OLDDOGS COMMENTS!

American’s where is your natural instinct? You should not have to be told that your early education was a surreptitious preparation for loving your enemies in Government, and hating all others. You should not have to be told that wars are insane, and no one ever wins a war, They are just the result of your indoctrination when you volunteer to be killed protecting something that never existed. You are like the man who killed his best friend for telling him his wife had been a whore for as long as he could remember, and had proof. He simply could not stop loving her because of all the years he had been with her had made him feel good about his self. Patriotism is a fool’s excuse for his ignorance. History will tell you there has never been a good government anywhere; ever! Turn off that stupid box and read!!!

2-6-2015 10-13-51 AM

ONCE YOU GET ON THIS TRAIN YOU CANT GET OFF

September 19th, 2016 by

www.rebelmadman.com/?p=511

By Michael Gaddy

Author’s note: Election season is in full blossom. Both sides have morphed from “let’s solidify our base” before the convention to “make whatever promises necessary” in order to win the election. Hillary is a full-blown criminal and serial liar and has been for the majority of her life. Trump needs someone to send him a fifty-five-gallon barrel of Aunt Jemima syrup to go with all of his waffles. (First Obama was not born in America—now he was; I will build a wall—-maybe, I will (might) export all illegal’s; I don’t trust those folks at Goldman Sachs who gave Hillary all of that money for speeches but I will hire one of their former employers to advise my campaign.) Unfortunately, those who get all caught up in election season even begin to make promises and lie for their favorite candidates. (Check Facebook; According to his supporters Trump will cancel all of Obama’s executive orders and prosecute the Obama’s and the Clinton’s as soon as he takes office.)

The huge problem is: that no matter which candidate wins the election they will be very limited in what they personally can do–simply because our government has been controlled by what has been referred to as the “Deep State,” “The Power Cabal,” “The National Security State” or simply the “Continuity of Government” plan which was implemented over 15 years ago. Yes, the candidate you vote for is simply a puppet who for 4 or 8 years will simply move according to pressure applied to their strings by operatives within the “Deep State” and dance to the music of the international banking orchestra. Here is an article I wrote on this subject some time back but it is most relevant today as well.

“The existence of the secret government was so closely held that Congress was completely bypassed.” ~James Bamford

Should anyone trust a man former president Richard Nixon once praised as “a ruthless little bastard?” What if this man teamed up with another lifelong politician who stated emphatically, “Principle is ok up to a certain point, but principle doesn’t do any good if you lose the nomination?” These two men experienced tremendous influence in the power politics of our country for decades.

Although these men, void of any scruples other than might-makes-right, played musical chairs in the Gerald Ford administration, switching between Chief of Staff and Secretary of Defense. They came together again with a purpose in the Ronald Reagan administration. They are, of course, Donald Rumsfeld and Dick Cheney.

Reagan, every true Republican’s dream of the perfect president, was responsible for initiating the development of a plan which would totally suspend the Constitution and Bill of Rights and place the control of a “shadow government” into the hands of a very few people. Ostensibly this would only occur during a nuclear attack on this country and would ensure the continuity of government through the crisis. But, unfortunately, we have learned in this country that if a politician sees the opportunity to gain power and to do so would require a crisis, it is not beyond these people of little to no principles to create the necessary crisis. Since fabricating a nuclear attack on this country would require perhaps insurmountable challenges, the bar for the implementation of this shadow government had to be significantly lowered.

Reagan knew, or should have known, there were no provisions in the Constitution for its suspension in the time of emergency. Yet, Reagan set in motion, by secret directive, the formation and operational designs for such a proxy government. This was not only a written decree from the executive, it was actually practiced. Once a year three “teams” would be deployed throughout the country with people playacting the parts of president and cabinet members. These exercises would be conducted on a closed military facility or in some remote part of the country. Even though Donald Rumsfeld was not in government at the time, but was the CEO of a large pharmaceutical company and Dick Cheney was a member of Congress from Wyoming, both participated in these mock drills on a continuing basis. Since former presidential chiefs-of-staff usually played the part of the president in these drills, Rumsfeld and Cheney got lots of practice.

Presidential succession is set forth by the Constitution (Article II, Section 1, Clause 6) and the 25th Amendment; the continuity of government plan (COG) completely ignores both. Indeed, as previously stated, the entire COG is unconstitutional as an unelected bureaucrat could act as president.

Since the days of Alexander Hamilton and his merry band of monarchists, enterprising politicians with no principles, but tons of ambition, have set about to circumvent the restrictions and impediments to wealth and power known as either the Articles of Confederation or a Constitution and Bill of Rights.

The existence of the plans for a suspension of the constitution and rule by executive directive appears to have first surfaced publicly during the Iran-Contra hearings.

Brooks: Colonel North, in your work at the N.S.C. were you not assigned, at one time, to work on plans for the continuity of government in the event of a major disaster?

Both North’s attorney and Sen. Daniel Inouye, the Democratic Chair of the Committee, responded in a way that showed they were aware of the issue:

Brendan Sullivan [North’s counsel, agitatedly]: Mr. Chairman?

[Senator Daniel] Inouye: I believe that question touches upon a highly sensitive and classified area so may I request that you not touch upon that?

Brooks: I was particularly concerned, Mr. Chairman because I read in Miami papers, and several others, that there had been a plan developed, by that same agency, a contingency plan in the event of emergency that would suspend the American constitution. And I was deeply concerned about it and wondered if that was an area in which he had worked. I believe that it was and I wanted to get his confirmation.

Inouye: May I most respectfully request that that matter not be touched upon at this stage. If we wish to get into this, I’m certain arrangements can be made for an executive session.

Near the end of Reagan’s term in 1988, he would redefine the plan to include events other than a nuclear attack. (Executive Order 12656) COG now could be implemented with anything a member of the political power structure deemed a “national emergency.” Of course, what constitutes a national emergency is left to the discretion of those who would profit from such a determination. One cannot help but be reminded of Alexander Hamilton’s explanation to Thomas Jefferson as to what “necessary” means to a politician. Is there any wonder that Jefferson would write, “Hamilton was not only a monarchist, but for a monarchy bottomed on corruption.”

“… [N]ecessary often means no more than needfulrequisiteincidentaluseful, or conducive to …” ~ Alexander Hamilton

Was it plan or providence that brought Rumsfeld and Cheney back into power when the Supreme Court suspended an election, ordered the state of Florida to stop counting the people’s votes, and declared George W. Bush president?

Cheney, when made the chair of the committee to select a VP candidate to fill out the ticket of George W. Bush, decided the most qualified candidate for that office was himself. And his longtime political partner, Rumsfeld, was installed as Secretary of Defense.

Then, of course, along came 9/11. In the interest of full disclosure, let me here state the only thing I am sure of concerning the events of 9/11 is that our government is lying about the entire event.

But, it is beyond argument that 9/11 did occur; it is also beyond debate that within hours of those events, Dick Cheney, not President Bush, enacted the Continuity of Government (COG) plan which suspended the Constitution. (Please note: one of the originators of an act which suspended constitutional governance in this country, implemented that plan to suspend the US Constitution and Bill of Rights, an unconstitutional act on its face.) I’m sure that Hamilton and his disciples Cheney and Rumsfeld would declare 9/11 necessitated the need for such an action.

“Necessity is the plea for every infringement of human freedom. It is the argument of tyrants” ~ William Pitt

“Useful and necessary was always the tyrant’s plea.” ~ C. S. Lewis

Unfortunately, most citizens of this country had no idea a plan had been implemented that created a secret “shadow government” unencumbered with rules, regulations and inspection by Congress or the public. The first possible awareness appeared in an article in the Washington Post in March of 2002 titled, “Shadow Government is at work in Secret.” The article can be found here.

It became readily apparent neither the Senate nor the House of Representatives were aware of this “shadow government” and certainly had not been consulted on its implementation. Could it be the Patriot Act, a tyrannical, unconstitutional piece of legislation was created by this secret government? One thing for sure is: two of the strongest dissenters to this proposal were Tom Daschle, Senate Majority leader and Patrick Leahy, head of the Senate Judiciary Committee. Is it mere coincidence these two opponents to the Patriot Act received letters containing spores of deadly Anthrax? Is it also coincidence that shortly after that, both dropped their opposition?

We know that President George W. Bush continued the “shadow government” on May 9, 2007, with National Security Presidential Directive 51 and Homeland Security Presidential Directive 20. Only the unclassified portions of these directives were published. When Congressman Peter DeFazio of the Homeland Security Commission asked to see the classified portions of this presidential and Homeland Security directive, his request was denied.

We also know that Obama continued the continuity of government plans as established during the Bush administration on July 27th, 2009 stating his administration draws “no distance between their own policies and those left behind by the Bush administration.”

John McCain stated in 2008 that the “war on terror” could last 100 years. Leon Panetta, another former SecDef, said the war against ISIS could take up to 30 years. We know that to continue with the suspension of at least portions of the Constitution requires a “national emergency.” There is no finer claim for emergency than being in a war that is expected to last for years.

War requires an enemy, and for the better part of 40 years our out-of-control national security apparatus has either lied us into wars or created the enemies we fight. There is substantial, credible evidence our shadow government created, financed and equipped al-Qaeda, ISIS, al Nusra and the Azov Battalion in the Ukraine. See here for evidence of our support for the Nazis in the Ukraine.

War is the reason for this secret government and those within this power cabal will continue to foment and prosecute wars because it accomplishes two important goals: The cabal has no restrictions on its actions while those in the military/industrial/congressional complex grow wealthy beyond their wildest dreams and the people are continually subjected to liberty destroying legislation such as the Patriot Act, NDAA, and a heavily militarized police state.

We have a criminal enterprise in power in this country that has suspended our Constitution and Bill of Rights and rules by secret orders from a shadow government. Elections mean nothing. Electing a person to congress who has no power when it comes to confronting this shadow government is an effort in futility. Electing a new president is a waste of time, money and effort. He/she has already bought into this madness or they would not stand a chance of being elected for the cabal controlled mainstream media is truly the electorate. They declare who or who is not electable and the masses follow their lead.

No American will ever be free as long as this shadow government is in control.

IN RIGHTFUL REBEL LIBERTY

Mike

10 13 11 flagbar

A hidden world growing beyond control

September 17th, 2016 by

http://projects.washingtonpost.com/top-secret-america/articles/a-hidden-world-growing-beyond-control/1

 

Part 1

The top-secret world the government created in response to the terrorist attacks of Sept. 11, 2001, has become so large, so unwieldy and so secretive that no one knows how much money it costs, how many people it employs, how many programs exist within it or exactly how many agencies do the same work.

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These are some of the findings of a two-year investigation by The Washington Post that discovered what amounts to an alternative geography of the United States, a Top Secret America hidden from public view and lacking in thorough oversight. After nine years of unprecedented spending and growth, the result is that the system put in place to keep the United States safe is so massive that its effectiveness is impossible to determine.

The investigation’s other findings include:

* Some 1,271 government organizations and 1,931 private companies work on programs related to counterterrorism, homeland security and intelligence in about 10,000 locations across the United States.

* An estimated 854,000 people, nearly 1.5 times as many people as live in Washington, D.C., hold top-secret security clearances.

* In Washington and the surrounding area, 33 building complexes for top-secret intelligence work are under construction or have been built since September 2001. Together they occupy the equivalent of almost three Pentagons or 22 U.S. Capitol buildings – about 17 million square feet of space.

* Many security and intelligence agencies do the same work, creating redundancy and waste. For example, 51 federal organizations and military commands, operating in 15 U.S. cities, track the flow of money to and from terrorist networks.

* Analysts who make sense of documents and conversations obtained by foreign and domestic spying share their judgment by publishing 50,000 intelligence reports each year – a volume so large that many are routinely ignored.

An alternative geography

Since Sept. 11, 2001, the top-secret world created to respond to the terrorist attacks has grown into an unwieldy enterprise spread over 10,000 U.S. locations. Launch Photo Gallery »

These are not academic issues; lack of focus, not lack of resources, was at the heart of the Fort Hood shooting that left 13 dead, as well as the Christmas Day bomb attempt thwarted not by the thousands of analysts employed to find lone terrorists but by an alert airline passenger who saw smoke coming from his seatmate.

They are also issues that greatly concern some of the people in charge of the nation’s security.

“There has been so much growth since 9/11 that getting your arms around that – not just for the

In the Department of Defense, where more than two-thirds of the intelligence programs reside, only a handful of senior officials – called Super Users – have the ability to even know about all the department’s activities. But as two of the Super Users indicated in interviews, there is simply no way they can keep up with the nation’s most sensitive work.

“I’m not going to live long enough to be briefed on everything” was how one Super User put it. The other recounted that for his initial briefing, he was escorted into a tiny, dark room, seated at a small table and told he couldn’t take notes. Program after program began flashing on a screen, he said, until he yelled ”Stop!” in frustration.

“I wasn’t remembering any of it,” he said.

Underscoring the seriousness of these issues are the conclusions of retired Army Lt. Gen. John R. Vines, who was asked last year to review the method for tracking the Defense Department’s most sensitive programs. Vines, who once commanded 145,000 troops in Iraq and is familiar with complex problems, was stunned by what he discovered.

“I’m not aware of any agency with the authority, responsibility or a process in place to coordinate all these interagency and commercial activities,” he said in an interview. “The complexity of this system defies description.”

The result, he added, is that it’s impossible to tell whether the country is safer because of all this spending and all these activities. “Because it lacks a synchronizing process, it inevitably results in message dissonance, reduced effectiveness and waste,” Vines said. “We consequently can’t effectively assess whether it is making us more safe.”

The Post’s investigation is based on government documents and contracts, job descriptions, property records, corporate and social networking Web sites, additional records, and hundreds of interviews with intelligence, military and corporate officials and former officials. Most requested anonymity either because they are prohibited from speaking publicly or because, they said, they feared retaliation at work for describing their concerns.

The Post’s online database of government organizations and private companies was built entirely on public records. The investigation focused on top-secret work because the amount classified at the secret level is too large to accurately track.

Today’s article describes the government’s role in this expanding enterprise. Tuesday’s article describes the government’s dependence on private contractors. Wednesday’s is a portrait of one Top Secret America community. On the Web, an extensive, searchable database built by The Post about Top Secret America is available at washingtonpost.com/topsecretamerica.

Defense Secretary Gates, in his interview with The Post, said that he does not believe the system has become too big to manage but that getting precise data is sometimes difficult. Singling out the growth of intelligence units in the Defense Department, he said he intends to review those programs for waste. “Nine years after 9/11, it makes a lot of sense to sort of take a look at this and say, ‘Okay, we’ve built tremendous capability, but do we have more than we need?’ ” he said.

CIA Director Leon Panetta, who was also interviewed by The Post last week, said he’s begun mapping out a five-year plan for his agency because the levels of spending since 9/11 are not sustainable. “Particularly with these deficits, we’re going to hit the wall. I want to be prepared for that,” he said. “Frankly, I think everyone in intelligence ought to be doing that.”

In an interview before he resigned as the director of national intelligence in May, retired Adm. Dennis C. Blair said he did not believe there was overlap and redundancy in the intelligence world. “Much of what appears to be redundancy is, in fact, providing tailored intelligence for many different customers,” he said.

Blair also expressed confidence that subordinates told him what he needed to know. “I have visibility on all the important intelligence programs across the community, and there are processes in place to ensure the different intelligence capabilities are working together where they need to,” he said.

Weeks later, as he sat in the corner of a ballroom at the Willard Hotel waiting to give a speech, he mused about The Post’s findings. “After 9/11, when we decided to attack violent extremism, we did as we so often do in this country,” he said. “The attitude was, if it’s worth doing, it’s probably worth overdoing.”

Part 2

Outside a gated subdivision of mansions in McLean, a line of cars idles every weekday morning as a new day in Top Secret America gets underway. The drivers wait patiently to turn left, then crawl up a hill and around a bend to a destination that is not on any public map and not announced by any street sign.

Liberty Crossing tries hard to hide from view. But in the winter, leafless trees can’t conceal a mountain of cement and windows the size of five Wal-Mart stores stacked on top of one another rising behind a grassy berm. One step too close without the right badge, and men in black jump out of nowhere, guns at the ready.

Past the armed guards and the hydraulic steel barriers, at least 1,700 federal employees and 1,200 private contractors work at Liberty Crossing, the nickname for the two headquarters of the Office of the Director of National Intelligence and its National Counterterrorism Center. The two share a police force, a canine unit and thousands of parking spaces.

Liberty Crossing is at the center of the collection of U.S. government agencies and corporate contractors that mushroomed after the 2001 attacks. But it is not nearly the biggest, the most costly or even the most secretive part of the 9/11 enterprise.

In an Arlington County office building, the lobby directory doesn’t include the Air Force’s mysteriously named XOIWS unit, but there’s a big “Welcome!” sign in the hallway greeting visitors who know to step off the elevator on the third floor. In Elkridge, Md., a clandestine program hides in a tall concrete structure fitted with false windows to look like a normal office building. In Arnold, Mo., the location is across the street from a Target and a Home Depot. In St. Petersburg, Fla., it’s in a modest brick bungalow in a run-down business park.

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Each day at the National Counterterrorism Center in McLean, workers review at least 5,000 pieces of terrorist-related data from intelligence agencies and keep an eye on world events. (Photo by: Melina Mara / The Washington Post)

Every day across the United States, 854,000 civil servants, military personnel and private contractors with top-secret security clearances are scanned into offices protected by electromagnetic locks, retinal cameras and fortified walls that eavesdropping equipment cannot penetrate.

This is not exactly President Dwight D. Eisenhower’s “military-industrial complex,” which emerged with the Cold War and centered on building nuclear weapons to deter the Soviet Union. This is a national security enterprise with a more amorphous mission: defeating transnational violent extremists.

Much of the information about this mission is classified. That is the reason it is so difficult to gauge the success and identify the problems of Top Secret America, including whether money is being spent wisely. The U.S. intelligence budget is vast, publicly announced last year as $75 billion, 21/2 times the size it was on Sept. 10, 2001. But the figure doesn’t include many military activities or domestic counterterrorism programs.

At least 20 percent of the government organizations that exist to fend off terrorist threats were established or refashioned in the wake of 9/11. Many that existed before the attacks grew to historic proportions as the Bush administration and Congress gave agencies more money than they were capable of responsibly spending.

The Pentagon’s Defense Intelligence Agency, for example, has gone from 7,500 employees in 2002 to 16,500 today. The budget of the National Security Agency, which conducts electronic eavesdropping, doubled. Thirty-five FBI Joint Terrorism Task Forces became 106. It was phenomenal growth that began almost as soon as the Sept. 11 attacks ended.

Nine days after the attacks, Congress committed $40 billion beyond what was in the federal budget to fortify domestic defenses and to launch a global offensive against al-Qaeda. It followed that up with an additional $36.5 billion in 2002 and $44 billion in 2003. That was only a beginning.

With the quick infusion of money, military and intelligence agencies multiplied. Twenty-four organizations were created by the end of 2001, including the Office of Homeland Security and the Foreign Terrorist Asset Tracking Task Force. In 2002, 37 more were created to track weapons of mass destruction, collect threat tips and coordinate the new focus on counterterrorism. That was followed the next year by 36 new organizations; and 26 after that; and 31 more; and 32 more; and 20 or more each in 2007, 2008 and 2009.

In all, at least 263 organizations have been created or reorganized as a response to 9/11. Each has required more people, and those people have required more administrative and logistic support: phone operators, secretaries, librarians, architects, carpenters, construction workers, air-conditioning mechanics and, because of where they work, even janitors with top-secret clearances.

With so many more employees, units and organizations, the lines of responsibility began to blur. To remedy this, at the recommendation of the bipartisan 9/11 Commission, the George W. Bush administration and Congress decided to create an agency in 2004 with overarching responsibilities called the Office of the Director of National Intelligence (ODNI) to bring the colossal effort under control.

Part 3

While that was the idea, Washington has its own ways.

The first problem was that the law passed by Congress did not give the director clear legal or budgetary authority over intelligence matters, which meant he wouldn’t have power over the individual agencies he was supposed to control.

The second problem: Even before the first director, Ambassador John D. Negroponte, was on the job, the turf battles began. The Defense Department shifted billions of dollars out of one budget and into another so that the ODNI could not touch it, according to two senior officials who watched the process. The CIA reclassified some of its most sensitive information at a higher level so the National Counterterrorism Center staff, part of the ODNI, would not be allowed to see it, said former intelligence officers involved.

And then came a problem that continues to this day, which has to do with the ODNI’s rapid expansion.

When it opened in the spring of 2005, Negroponte’s office was all of 11 people stuffed into a secure vault with closet-size rooms a block from the White House. A year later, the budding agency moved to two floors of another building. In April 2008, it moved into its huge permanent home, Liberty Crossing.

Today, many officials who work in the intelligence agencies say they remain unclear about what the ODNI is in charge of. To be sure, the ODNI has made some progress, especially in intelligence-sharing, information technology and budget reform. The DNI and his managers hold interagency meetings every day to promote collaboration. The last director, Blair, doggedly pursued such nitty-gritty issues as procurement reform, compatible computer networks, tradecraft standards and collegiality.

But improvements have been overtaken by volume at the ODNI, as the increased flow of intelligence data overwhelms the system’s ability to analyze and use it. Every day, collection systems at the National Security Agency intercept and store 1.7 billion e-mails, phone calls and other types of communications. The NSA sorts a fraction of those into 70 separate databases. The same problem bedevils every other intelligence agency, none of which have enough analysts and translators for all this work.

The practical effect of this unwieldiness is visible, on a much smaller scale, in the office of Michael Leiter, the director of the National Counterterrorism Center. Leiter spends much of his day flipping among four computer monitors lined up on his desk. Six hard drives sit at his feet. The data flow is enormous, with dozens of databases feeding separate computer networks that cannot interact with one another.

There is a long explanation for why these databases are still not connected, and it amounts to this: It’s too hard, and some agency heads don’t really want to give up the systems they have. But there’s some progress: “All my e-mail on one computer now,” Leiter says. “That’s a big deal.”

Part 4

To get another view of how sprawling Top Secret America has become, just head west on the toll road toward Dulles International Airport.

As a Michaels craft store and a Books-A-Million give way to the military intelligence giants Northrop Grumman and Lockheed Martin, find the off-ramp and turn left. Those two shimmering-blue five-story ice cubes belong to the National Geospatial-Intelligence Agency, which analyzes images and mapping data of the Earth’s geography. A small sign obscured by a boxwood hedge says so.

Across the street, in the chocolate-brown blocks, is Carahsoft, an intelligence agency contractor specializing in mapping, speech analysis and data harvesting. Nearby is the government’s Underground Facility Analysis Center. It identifies overseas underground command centers associated with weapons of mass destruction and terrorist groups, and advises the military on how to destroy them.

Clusters of top-secret work exist throughout the country, but the Washington region is the capital of Top Secret America.

About half of the post-9/11 enterprise is anchored in an arc stretching from Leesburg south to Quantico, back north through Washington and curving northeast to Linthicum, just north of the Baltimore-Washington International Marshall Airport. Many buildings sit within off-limits government compounds or military bases.
Others occupy business parks or are intermingled with neighborhoods, schools and shopping centers and go unnoticed by most people who live or play nearby.

Many of the newest buildings are not just utilitarian offices but also edifices “on the order of the pyramids,” in the words of one senior military intelligence officer.

Not far from the Dulles Toll Road, the CIA has expanded into two buildings that will increase the agency’s office space by one-third. To the south, Springfield is becoming home to the new $1.8 billion National Geospatial-Intelligence Agency headquarters, which will be the fourth-largest federal building in the area and home to 8,500 employees. Economic stimulus money is paying hundreds of millions of dollars for this kind of federal construction across the region.

9-17-2016-10-04-16-amConstruction for the National Geospatial-Intelligence Agency in Springfield (Photo by: Michael S. Williamson / The Washington Post)

It’s not only the number of buildings that suggests the size and cost of this expansion, it’s also what is inside: banks of television monitors. “Escort-required” badges. X-ray machines and lockers to store cellphones and pagers. Keypad door locks that open special rooms encased in metal or permanent dry wall, impenetrable to eavesdropping tools and protected by alarms and a security force capable of responding within 15 minutes. Every one of these buildings has at least one of these rooms, known as a SCIF, for sensitive compartmented information facility. Some are as small as a closet; others are four times the size of a football field.

SCIF size has become a measure of status in Top Secret America, or at least in the Washington region of it. “In D.C., everyone talks SCIF, SCIF, SCIF,” said Bruce Paquin, who moved to Florida from the Washington region several years ago to start a SCIF construction business. “They’ve got the penis envy thing going. You can’t be a big boy unless you’re a three-letter agency and you have a big SCIF.”

SCIFs are not the only must-have items people pay attention to. Command centers, internal television networks, video walls, armored SUVs and personal security guards have also become the bling of national security.

“You can’t find a four-star general without a security detail,” said one three-star general now posted in Washington after years abroad. “Fear has caused everyone to have stuff. Then comes, ‘If he has one, then I have to have one.’ It’s become a status symbol.”

Part 5

Among the most important people inside the SCIFs are the low-paid employees carrying their lunches to work to save money. They are the analysts, the 20- and 30-year-olds making $41,000 to $65,000 a year, whose job is at the core of everything Top Secret America tries to do.

At its best, analysis melds cultural understanding with snippets of conversations, coded dialogue, anonymous tips, even scraps of trash, turning them into clues that lead to individuals and groups trying to harm the United States.

Their work is greatly enhanced by computers that sort through and categorize data. But in the end, analysis requires human judgment, and half the analysts are relatively inexperienced, having been hired in the past several years, said a senior ODNI official. Contract analysts are often straight out of college and trained at corporate headquarters.

When hired, a typical analyst knows very little about the priority countries – Iraq, Iran, Afghanistan and Pakistan – and is not fluent in their languages. Still, the number of intelligence reports they produce on these key countries is overwhelming, say current and former intelligence officials who try to cull them every day. The ODNI doesn’t know exactly how many reports are issued each year, but in the process of trying to find out, the chief of analysis discovered 60 classified analytic Web sites still in operation that were supposed to have been closed down for lack of usefulness. “Like a zombie, it keeps on living” is how one official describes the sites.

The problem with many intelligence reports, say officers who read them, is that they simply re-slice the same facts already in circulation. “It’s the soccer ball syndrome. Something happens, and they want to rush to cover it,” said Richard H. Immerman, who was the ODNI’s assistant deputy director of national intelligence for analytic integrity and standards until early 2009. “I saw tremendous overlap.”

Even the analysts at the National Counterterrorism Center (NCTC), which is supposed to be where the most sensitive, most difficult-to-obtain nuggets of information are fused together, get low marks from intelligence officials for not producing reports that are original, or at least better than the reports already written by the CIA, FBI, National Security Agency or Defense Intelligence Agency.

When Maj. Gen. John M. Custer was the director of intelligence at U.S. Central Command, he grew angry at how little helpful information came out of the NCTC. In 2007, he visited its director at the time, retired Vice Adm. John Scott Redd, to tell him so. “I told him that after 4 1/2 years, this organization had never produced one shred of information that helped me prosecute three wars!” he said loudly, leaning over the table during an interview.

Two years later, Custer, now head of the Army’s intelligence school at Fort Huachuca, Ariz., still gets red-faced recalling that day, which reminds him of his frustration with Washington’s bureaucracy. “Who has the mission of reducing redundancy and ensuring everybody doesn’t gravitate to the lowest-hanging fruit?” he said. “Who orchestrates what is produced so that everybody doesn’t produce the same thing?”

He’s hardly the only one irritated. In a secure office in Washington, a senior intelligence officer was dealing with his own frustration. Seated at his computer, he began scrolling through some of the classified information he is expected to read every day: CIA World Intelligence Review, WIRe-CIA, Spot Intelligence Report, Daily Intelligence Summary, Weekly Intelligence Forecast, Weekly Warning Forecast, IC Terrorist Threat Assessments, NCTC Terrorism Dispatch, NCTC Spotlight . . .

It’s too much, he complained. The inbox on his desk was full, too. He threw up his arms, picked up a thick, glossy intelligence report and waved it around, yelling.

“Jesus! Why does it take so long to produce?”

“Why does it have to be so bulky?”

“Why isn’t it online?”

The overload of hourly, daily, weekly, monthly and annual reports is actually counterproductive, say people who receive them. Some policymakers and senior officials don’t dare delve into the backup clogging their computers. They rely instead on personal briefers, and those briefers usually rely on their own agency’s analysis, re-creating the very problem identified as a main cause of the failure to thwart the attacks: a lack of information-sharing.

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A new Defense Department office complex goes up in Alexandria. (Photo by: Michael S. Williamson / The Washington Post)

The ODNI’s analysis office knows this is a problem. Yet its solution was another publication, this one a daily online newspaper, Intelligence Today. Every day, a staff of 22 culls more than two dozen agencies’ reports and 63 Web sites, selects the best information and packages it by originality, topic and region.

Analysis is not the only area where serious overlap appears to be gumming up the national security machinery and blurring the lines of responsibility.

Within the Defense Department alone, 18 commands and agencies conduct information operations, which aspire to manage foreign audiences’ perceptions of U.S. policy and military activities overseas.

And all the major intelligence agencies and at least two major military commands claim a major role in cyber-warfare, the newest and least-defined frontier.

“Frankly, it hasn’t been brought together in a unified approach,” CIA Director Panetta said of the many agencies now involved in cyber-warfare.

“Cyber is tremendously difficult” to coordinate, said Benjamin A. Powell, who served as general counsel for three directors of national intelligence until he left the government last year. “Sometimes there was an unfortunate attitude of bring your knives, your guns, your fists and be fully prepared to defend your turf.” Why? “Because it’s funded, it’s hot and it’s sexy.”

Part 6

Last fall, U.S. Army Maj. Nidal Malik Hasan allegedly opened fire at Fort Hood, Tex., killing 13 people and wounding 30. In the days after the shootings, information emerged about Hasan’s increasingly strange behavior at Walter Reed Army Medical Center, where he had trained as a psychiatrist and warned commanders that they should allow Muslims to leave the Army or risk “adverse events.” He had also exchanged e-mails with a well-known radical cleric in Yemen being monitored by U.S. intelligence.

 

Anti-Deception Technologies

From avatars and lasers to thermal cameras and fidget meters, this multimedia gallery takes a look at some of the latest technologies being developed by the government and private companies to thwart terrorists. Launch Gallery »

But none of this reached the one organization charged with handling counterintelligence investigations within the Army. Just 25 miles up the road from Walter Reed, the Army’s 902nd Military Intelligence Group had been doing little to search the ranks for potential threats. Instead, the 902’s commander had decided to turn the unit’s attention to assessing general terrorist affiliations in the United States, even though the Department of Homeland Security and the FBI’s 106 Joint Terrorism Task Forces were already doing this work in great depth.

The 902nd, working on a program the commander named RITA, for Radical Islamic Threat to the Army, had quietly been gathering information on Hezbollah, Iranian Republican Guard and al-Qaeda student organizations in the United States. The assessment “didn’t tell us anything we didn’t know already,” said the Army’s senior counterintelligence officer at the Pentagon.

Secrecy and lack of coordination have allowed organizations, such as the 902nd in this case, to work on issues others were already tackling rather than take on the much more challenging job of trying to identify potential jihadist sympathizers within the Army itself.

Beyond redundancy, secrecy within the intelligence world hampers effectiveness in other ways, say defense and intelligence officers. For the Defense Department, the root of this problem goes back to an ultra-secret group of programs for which access is extremely limited and monitored by specially trained security officers.
These are called Special Access Programs – or SAPs – and the Pentagon’s list of code names for them runs 300 pages. The intelligence community has hundreds more of its own, and those hundreds have thousands of sub-programs with their own limits on the number of people authorized to know anything about them. All this means that very few people have a complete sense of what’s going on.

“There’s only one entity in the entire universe that has visibility on all SAPs – that’s God,” said James R. Clapper, undersecretary of defense for intelligence and the Obama administration’s nominee to be the next director of national intelligence.

Such secrecy can undermine the normal chain of command when senior officials use it to cut out rivals or when subordinates are ordered to keep secrets from their commanders.

One military officer involved in one such program said he was ordered to sign a document prohibiting him from disclosing it to his four-star commander, with whom he worked closely every day, because the commander was not authorized to know about it. Another senior defense official recalls the day he tried to find out about a program in his budget, only to be rebuffed by a peer. “What do you mean you can’t tell me? I pay for the program,” he recalled saying in a heated exchange.

Another senior intelligence official with wide access to many programs said that secrecy is sometimes used to protect ineffective projects. “I think the secretary of defense ought to direct a look at every single thing to see if it still has value,” he said. “The DNI ought to do something similar.”

The ODNI hasn’t done that yet. The best it can do at the moment is maintain a database of the names of the most sensitive programs in the intelligence community. But the database does not include many important and relevant Pentagon projects.

Part 7

Because so much is classified, illustrations of what goes on every day in Top Secret America can be hard to ferret out. But every so often, examples emerge. A recent one shows the post-9/11 system at its best and its worst.

Last fall, after eight years of growth and hirings, the enterprise was at full throttle when word emerged that something was seriously amiss inside Yemen. In response, President Obama signed an order sending dozens of secret commandos to that country to target and kill the leaders of an al-Qaeda affiliate.

In Yemen, the commandos set up a joint operations center packed with hard drives, forensic kits and communications gear. They exchanged thousands of intercepts, agent reports, photographic evidence and real-time video surveillance with dozens of top-secret organizations in the United States.

That was the system as it was intended. But when the information reached the National Counterterrorism Center in Washington for analysis, it arrived buried within the 5,000 pieces of general terrorist-related data that are reviewed each day. Analysts had to switch from database to database, from hard drive to hard drive, from screen to screen, just to locate what might be interesting to study further.

As military operations in Yemen intensified and the chatter about a possible terrorist strike increased, the intelligence agencies ramped up their effort. The flood of information into the NCTC became a torrent.

Somewhere in that deluge was even more vital data. Partial names of someone in Yemen. A reference to a Nigerian radical who had gone to Yemen. A report of a father in Nigeria worried about a son who had become interested in radical teachings and had disappeared inside Yemen.

These were all clues to what would happen when a Nigerian named Umar Farouk Abdulmutallab left Yemen and eventually boarded a plane in Amsterdam bound for Detroit. But nobody put them together because, as officials would testify later, the system had gotten so big that the lines of responsibility had become hopelessly blurred.

“There are so many people involved here,” NCTC Director Leiter told Congress.

“Everyone had the dots to connect,” DNI Blair explained to the lawmakers. “But I hadn’t made it clear exactly who had primary responsibility.”

And so Abdulmutallab was able to step aboard Northwest Airlines Flight 253. As it descended toward Detroit, he allegedly tried to ignite explosives hidden in his underwear. It wasn’t the very expensive, very large 9/11 enterprise that prevented disaster. It was a passenger who saw what he was doing and tackled him. “We didn’t follow up and prioritize the stream of intelligence,” White House counterterrorism adviser John O. Brennan explained afterward. “Because no one intelligence entity, or team or task force was assigned responsibility for doing that follow-up investigation.”

Blair acknowledged the problem. His solution: Create yet another team to run down every important lead. But he also told Congress he needed more money and more analysts to prevent another mistake.

More is often the solution proposed by the leaders of the 9/11 enterprise. After the Christmas Day bombing attempt, Leiter also pleaded for more – more analysts to join the 300 or so he already had.

The Department of Homeland Security asked for more air marshals, more body scanners and more analysts, too, even though it can’t find nearly enough qualified people to fill its intelligence unit now. Obama has said he will not freeze spending on national security, making it likely that those requests will be funded.

More building, more expansion of offices continues across the country. A $1.7 billion NSA data-processing center will be under construction soon near Salt Lake City. In Tampa, the U.S. Central Command’s new 270,000-square-foot intelligence office will be matched next year by an equally large headquarters building, and then, the year after that, by a 51,000-square-foot office just for its special operations section.

Just north of Charlottesville, the new Joint-Use Intelligence Analysis Facility will consolidate 1,000 defense intelligence analysts on a secure campus.

Meanwhile, five miles southeast of the White House, the DHS has broken ground for its new headquarters, to be shared with the Coast Guard. DHS, in existence for only seven years, already has its own Special Access Programs, its own research arm, its own command center, its own fleet of armored cars and its own 230,000-person workforce, the third-largest after the departments of Defense and Veterans Affairs.

Soon, on the grounds of the former St. Elizabeths mental hospital in Anacostia, a $3.4 billion showcase of security will rise from the crumbling brick wards. The new headquarters will be the largest government complex built since the Pentagon, a major landmark in the alternative geography of Top Secret America and four times as big as Liberty Crossing.

Staff researcher Julie Tate contributed to this report.

OLDDOGS COMMENTS!

Ladies and gentlemen there is nothing on earth that government can’t fuck up, when their secret objective is to bankrupt every thing in America and the rest of the world, so the new world order is justified. At least in their minds, this is being obedient to their masters, The Investment Banking Cartel. What stupid s.o.b. will be advising his/her boss that I am a threat to National security, just so he/she can take home more money than they’re worth? Welcome to hell on earth!

10 13 11 flagbar

 

Why Governments Want a Central Bank-Issued Digital Currency

September 16th, 2016 by

https://mises.org/blog/why-governments-want-central-bank-issued-digital-currency

9-16-2016-10-27-55-amBy Xiong Yue

On January 20, 2016, People’s Bank of China (PBoC) released an announcement on its website about its digital currency conference. At the conference, the PBoC urged its digital currency team to speed up effort and release its own digital currency quickly. Similarly, Bank of England, Bank of Canada, and some other central banks also expressed similar intentions to or claimed that they had considered issuing their own digital currencies. Since its creation, Bitcoin and other digital currencies have inspired the issuance of many private-issued and denationalized digital currencies. Now, it looks like that the central bank-issued digital currency is also becoming a global trend.

Why do central banks, which already fully control the issuance of currencies, need to bother with its own digital currency?

Well, this question is both interesting and important. To answer it, we need first to understand some basics, the Digital Currency 101:

Unlike Internet banking and third-party payment services using traditional electronic payment tools to facilitate fiat money transmission, digital currencies represent a new class of technology. They are developed out of a number of brand new and groundbreaking technologies — they are not tools to transmit money; they are arguably money themselves. Among them, one particular kind utilizes modern cryptography, earning its name crypto-currency. Bitcoin is an example of this kind of digital currency. After its creation, the idea inspired and led to many similar systems. Some commercial banks and central banks also work on their own digital currencies. Depending on their issuers, we can divide all digital currencies into three categories:

  1. Digital Currencies Issued by Non-Financial Institutions

In November, 2008, someone under the alias of Satoshi Nakamoto invented a new technology called Blockchain and for the first time introduced the concept of a peer-to-peer electronic cash system, also known as Bitcoin.1 On January 3, 2009, the code was released. Due to its peer-to-peer and electronic nature, digital currencies can be transferred directly between two individuals without a centralized clearance house. Thus, it is a fast, low-cost, and nationality-neutral payment system. 

  1. Commercial Banks-issued Digital Currency

Some large international financial institutions, attracted by digital currency for its low cost, high speed, and security, are also trying to utilize its underlying technology, known as Blockchain, as the basis to build their own proprietary digital currencies. Banks involved in such areas include UBS, Deutsche Bank, Santander, and BNY Mellon, some of the most prestigious banks worldwide. Their digital currencies are similar to the aforementioned ones, only they have different issuers. Especially worth noting is most financial institutions’ digital currencies are designed to meet their need for fast settlement, rather than to challenge the financial status quo by replacing the central bank-issued fiat money.

  1. Central Bank-issued Digital Currency

Some central banks, such as PBoC and Bank of England, after having done some research on digital currency, also plan to issue their own central bank-issued digital currencies (CBDCs). Technologically, CBDC is similar to the aforementioned two, but due to its pedigree, it might have greater economic implications and this is exactly the outcome that PBoC intend by introducing CBDC.

There are at least three implications of CBDC, i.e., three reasons for CBDC to governments.

To Create a Cashless Society

Governments hate cash. This is to a great degree the reason that the governments want the central banks to issue their own digital currencies.

For government, although cash is the original form of its fiat money, it has some obvious shortcomings. When compared funds stored in financial institutions, cash is less controlled by the government. Once cash leaves the banks, it becomes hard to trace. The government can’t know the location of each bank note, who owns it, or even if it still exists. This made cash easy to be used for drug dealing, smuggling, tax evasion, money laundering, and even funding terrorist activities. Meanwhile, cash owned by individuals can also be the target of burglars and robbers.

What’s more important is that cash can undermine the effectiveness of the government’s negative interest policy. When the negative interest rates dropped to a unbearable level, savers would abandon the convenience and security of depositing money in banks — they may withdraw their money and store it at home in cash. This makes it hard to implement the negative interest rate policy.

This is the very reason why the European Central Bank decided to stop issuing the 500-euro note while Lawrence Summers, the former US Treasury Secretary, advocated abolishing the 100-dollar note — prior to it, the US already stopped issuing the 500-dollar note and larger ones in 1945.

However, as long as the public still have the ability to withdraw cash from banks, no matter how the government restricts the use of cash, there will still be a large amount of cash outside the government-controlled finance system. This is not something that the government wants to see. But, in a society where central bank-issued digital cash is fully adopted, CBDC can replace traditional form of money and achieve the central bank’s goal of removing cash. Once that comes true, the government can monitor its citizen’s personal financials down to every single transaction and invalidate ones that are deemed to be illegal. It also makes it impossible for people to withdraw cash and store it at home in response to negative interest rates. This will only serve to worsen the financial exploitation. Just as Joseph T. Salerno pointed out in his article “Why Government Hates Cash:

Now the reason given by our rulers for suppressing cash is to keep society safe from terrorists, tax evaders, money launderers, drug cartels, and other villains real or imagined. The actual aim of the flood of laws restricting or even prohibiting the use of cash is to force the public to make payments through the financial system. This enables governments to expand their ability to spy on and keep track of their citizens’ most private financial dealings, in order to milk their citizens of every last dollar of tax payments that they claim are due.

Steal the Spotlight from Bitcoin and Other Private-issued Digital Currencies

The current monetary system is unfair, riddled with flaws and built on shaky ground. Economists of the Austrian school, among others, have gone to great efforts to explain this. The birth of private digital currencies presented an opportunity to make a difference by reforming money and the financial systems. The governments, however, are inevitably threatened. They envy the attention that digital currencies have received. But most governments were reluctant to declare digital currencies as illegal since that would contradict their perceived stance of being supportive of technological innovation.

Thus, although there is no unified stance among different governments with respect to digital currencies, the difference among them is merely a matter of degrees — there is not a single government that has wholeheartedly embraced digital currencies. Those egomaniacs want to divert the public attention away from digital currencies by creating ones they can control themselves.

The outcome is that the government’s stances are often in conflict with their own: On the one hand, they try to restrict the development of digital currencies, on the other, they also actively study and develop their own digital currencies modeled on Bitcoin. Take China, for example. On December 5, 2013, the central bank stated, “In order to protect the public’s right to property and ensure RMB’s legal status as a legal tender and reduce anti-money laundering law, and maintain financial stability.” The PBoC worked with the Ministry of Industry and Information, China Banking Regulation Commission, China Securities Regulation Commission, and China Insurance Regulation Commission, and released a notice:

Although Bitcoin is often called “Money,” given it is not issued by any monetary authorities, they don’t have the status as a legal lender, thus is not a true currency. Judging by its nature, Bitcoin is a virtual good. It doesn’t have the same legal standing as currencies, and shouldn’t be allowed to be in circulation in the market like real currencies.

No financial institutions and payment institutions should use Bitcoins to price their products and services. They shouldn’t buy or sell Bitcoin or seek to insure any Bitcoin-related services or Bitcoin itself. They should not provide their clients with Bitcoin-related services, directly or indirectly.

But this doesn’t mean that the PBoC considers digital currency as completely worthless; on the contrary, at their 2016 digital currency conference, they admitted that: “…. We had established a dedicated research team starting in 2014, and it believes that “… exploring the central bank issuing digital currency has positive and real implications and fundamental historical meanings.”

Replacing the genuine by releasing a copycat — this is certainly not the first time that a government has done such a thing. 

To Achieve a More Accurate Monetary Policy

Central bankers — a bunch of social engineers — have every confidence that they can regulate and control the economy by manipulating monetary policies. Every time their efforts fail, however, they try to scapegoat the market. For example, they would increase monetary supply as a way to give stimulus; however, the money meant to stimulate the real economy was often funneled into the financial market and used for purposes that contradict its original one by the “greedy” businessmen. In comparison, digital currencies can afford them better control of monetary policy. This is more than sending “money from the helicopter” to people’s wallets; given that these digital currencies are programmable; the government can even control exactly how to spend this new money using scripts.

For example, if the government plans to subsidize certain farms, say some corn farms, to support this sector of agriculture, they can directly add a certain amount of money to the wallets of some farms, for instance 100 million dollars and program this money to be sent to certain fertilizer merchants at a certain time, and that each can only spend maximum of 10 million dollars per year, and in this way, they can make sure that the farmers won’t squander the windfalls, and that this money won’t flow to other sectors, for instance, the stock market or real estate market.

Even though this kind of monetary policy is bound to fail, from the perspective of government officials, CBDC provides them a better tool. For them, with the help of the CBDC, they can plan and manage the economy better.

Conclusion

Although sharing some similar traits with Bitcoin and other free digital currencies, CBDC is in essence the opposite of what Bitcoin represents with the following three implications. (1) With central banks being the issuers of new digital currencies, the government may achieve its goal of building a cash-less society, and, for the general public, the financial exploitation they are subject to are likely to worsen. (2) CBDC will steal the spotlight of Bitcoin and therefore help governments to repress the digital currency revolution. (3) CBDC may be used as a tool for a more accurate monetary policy (although such effort is bound to fail in the long run). Confronting this upcoming huge threat, lovers of liberty should stay vigilant and work on countermeasures early.

Tyler Xiong Yue is a Master’s degree student studying under Jesús Huerta de Soto, and is a translator of many Mises Institute essays and books into Chinese.


Someone Dumped 70 Tons Of Paper Gold At 8:30 a.m.

http://investmentresearchdynamics.com/someone-dumped-70-tons-of-paper-gold-at-830-a-m/

At 8:30 a.m. this morning, 10 minutes after the Comex gold pit opens, over 70 tons of gold was dropped into the entire Comex trading system.  If this happened on the NYSE, one of the ECN’s (usually BATS) would have mysteriously “broke” and trading would have been halted – before the damaging effects of the systemic paper overload hit the market.

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From 8:30 to 9:30 a.m. EST, a total of 6,289,900 ozs of paper gold, or 196.5 tons was unloaded on the Comex.   To put this in perspective, the Comex is reporting 2.37 million ounces of gold in its registered account (the gold that can be delivered).  That amount of paper gold that would unloaded was 2.7x the amount of gold available to be delivered.   It represents 58% of the entire amount of gold reported to be in Comex vaults.

It’s hard to find any specific news trigger that would have motivated anyone to sell one ounce of gold, let alone nearly 3x the amount of physical gold available to be delivered.

Perhaps the worst economic news reported was retail sales, which dropped .3% in August vs. the expectation of no change.  This is the 4th month in a row retail sales have dropped on monthly sequential basis.  Retail sales have declined 6 out of 8 months this year.

There’s probably nothing to see in that chart above – just like the allegations of Hillary’s poor health…

OLDDOGS COMMENTS!

DEATH TO THE INTERNATIONAL INVESTMENT

BANKING CARTEL!

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Sex To Become Obsolete As A Way Of Procreating

September 15th, 2016 by

https://www.technocracy.news/index.php/2016/06/17/sex-become-obsolete-way-procreating/

 9-15-2016-8-48-18-am

Written By: Aurora Macrae-Crerar June 17, 2016

TN Note: Huxley’s 1932 book Brave New World wrote of fully engineered test-tube babies who were created for their particular stations of society, work and education. The time for public ethical debate is now, because scientists are moving full-speed ahead without public input. It is important to recognize that almost all of this kind of research is being conducted with some form of taxpayer funding. The Technocrat-minded scientist invents because he can.

Stanford law professor and bioethicist Hank Greely predicts that in the future most people in developed countries won’t have sex to make babies. Instead they’ll choose to control their child’s genetics by making embryos in a lab.

On KQED’s Forum program, Michael Krasny spoke with Greely about his new book, The End of Sex and the Future of Human Reproduction. Greely highlights the ethical and legal questions that might arise in the future’s reproductive paradigm.

This conversation has been edited for length and clarity.

Krasny: There are a lot of new advances, technology and so forth. We reached the point where you get some sperm donor and a little piece of skin and you’re in business because of stem cells.

Greely: My book argues that two different biomedical innovations coming from different directions and not really propelled by reproduction are going to combine here. One is whole-genome sequencing, and the other is what I call easy PGD, preimplantation genetic diagnosis, [that] is, getting rid of egg harvest … which is unpleasant, dangerous and really expensive.

This ties in with in vitro fertilization also being not as onerous as it has been in the past.

What I think is going to happen, we’ll be able to take some skin cells from anyone and turn them into any cell type. Make these into eggs or sperm and that is going to make IVF much easier, cheaper and less dangerous.

You [can] decide, “Well, I want these traits,” and it becomes a selective process.

Yes, I think we will see an increased and broad use of embryo selection. I would be careful to set the time frame at 20-40 years. I think we’ll actually see a world where most babies born to people with good health coverage will be conceived in the lab. People will make about a hundred embryos, each will have its whole genome tested, and the parents will be [asked … “Tell] us what you want to know and then tell us what embryo you want.”

This could bring down health care costs, and it is also good for same-sex couples, isn’t it?

Well, yes and maybe. I think it should bring down health care costs, and, in fact, one of the advantages to it is that it would be so beneficial for public health care costs that I think it would be provided for free. If it costs say, $10,000 to start a baby this way, 100 babies is a million dollars. If you avoid the birth of one baby with a serious genetic disease, you’ve saved $3 [million to] $5 million. The same-sex issue, I think that’s going to work, but that’s another jump. That would be taking a skin cell … from a woman and turning it into a sperm. I think [it’s] probable, but that hasn’t been done yet.

This is not the end of sex — because recreational sex will always be with us — it’s the end of sex as a way of procreating.

I think it will not be the complete end. I think people will still get pregnant the old-fashioned way, right, sometimes for religious reasons, sometimes for philosophical reasons, sometimes for romantic reasons, sometimes because they are teenagers and the back seat of the car is there.

A lot of people talk about playing God, but before we get into that, there’s the rubric of consumer eugenics. And there is a eugenics fear when we start talking about selection.

There certainly is. Eugenics is a slippery word; it means many things to different people. To some, it’s state-enforced reproductive control. To some … what we had was state-enforced sterilization. To some, it’s any kind of reproductive choices, but those are different things. For me, I think the coercion is much more important than the issues of selection. The concern about the state or the insurance company or someone else, forcing you to pick particular babies, worries me a lot more than having parents make choices, though that raises its own set of questions.

What do you see as the biggest question here?

I worry about the dilemma of Republican legislators in very conservative states. They want to spend as little money as possible on Medicaid. I could imagine a state saying, “We’re not going to pay for this via Medicaid,” which would mean that the roughly 40-50 percent of babies born in that state who are paid for by Medicaid wouldn’t get to go through this, and although they are not “superbabies,” adding another 10-20 percent health advantage to the babies of the rich over the babies of the poor is a bad thing.

Listen to the full interview here. Greely shares his thoughts on cost, socioeconomics, gene editing and the ethics of designer babies.

5-10-2016 8-55-33 AM

 

 

 


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