Archive for the ‘Big brother’ Category

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Man arrested/convicted for complaining to gov’t

June 15, 2009


Update June 20, 2009 Yep Freedom to petition gov’t – BYE BYE
(What is so striking about this recent update is that in my google search for printed articles, there are NO MAINSTREAM media sources. I wonder why?
)

U.S Judge Fines 40 people $80.000 for signing petition 6-18-09

Could this have happened 15 years ago in full view of the media? A citizen arrested and convicted for writing too many letters to his representative complaining of a menace to the community?

Anyone who saw the Shawshank Redemption and admired Andy Dufreyne for tirelessly writing letters to the governor requesting a better library for the prison – and got action…get your mind right…because this is now deemed ‘harassing’ the government.

Man arrested and convicted
for complaining about government

Sunday, June 14th, 2009
Source

Marshall Pappert waged a passionate, perhaps slightly obsessive, campaign of protest letter writing to Bridgeville, Pa. politicians and city officials to express his opposition to concrete plant. The city has responded, by arresting him, for criminally harassing the government.

View Video

ABC News Pittsburg reports: A Bridgeville man who was arrested and convicted after making repeated complaints to his local government took his appeal to one of Pennsylvania’s highest courts on Tuesday.Team 4 investigative reporter Jim Parsons, who originally broke the story, was in Superior Court for the arguments. At issue: How many letters to borough officials does it take to constitute a crime?

Marshall Pappert freely admits that when you add up all of the letters he has written to government officials — and include the copies of those letters he has sent to other public officials — the number of letters is about 350.While waiting for his case to be called, Pappert made no apologies for his letter-writing campaign to Bridgeville Borough.

“I did what any citizen should do when you see something that’s unhealthy to the community,” Pappert said. Pappert lives across Union Street from a Bridgeville concrete plant. The dust, the noise, the idling diesel trucks all combined to cause him to complain to the borough.

He wrote letter after letter — hundreds of them — and he left voice mail messages for the borough manager.In one message, Pappert said, “I’m asking you as a Bridgeville resident of 56 years to resign and get off of your position. Do the right thing.”

Instead, Pappert got arrested on a harassment charge and was convicted.At Tuesday’s appeal hearing, Assistant District Attorney Peggy Ivory told the court that Pappert “clearly crossed the line to a course of conduct designed to harass” the borough manager. Ivory declined an interview with Team 4 on Tuesday.

”We really maintain that this is about the First Amendment and that public officials just have to tolerate it,” said Bruce Boni, an attorney from the American Civil Liberties Union who’s representing Pappert. Bridgeville Councilman Pat DeBlasio said he doesn’t just tolerate Pappert’s actions, he embraces them.”We go to Memorial Day and stand there and listen to ‘Taps’ and honor the people who died. Well, they didn’t die so we could have five different choices of breakfast cereal. They sacrificed their lives so that you have the right to complain when you see something wrong,” DeBlasio said.

”If you can’t talk and do what I did to your government, what can you do? What are they going to do next to you?” Pappert said. A decision on whether to overturn Pappert’s criminal conviction is not expected until sometime in the summer.

Team 4 also learned on Tuesday that Ed Bogats — who arrested Pappert — submitted his resignation as Bridgeville police chief last month.The borough council unanimously accepted Bogats’ resignation. DeBlasio said Bogats cited medical reasons.Bogats did not return Team 4’s call to his home on Tuesday.

Thanks to Jonathan Turley
Phil Leggiere
http://mondoglobo.wftk.org/blog/qa/

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Recruiting children to kill and die

June 14, 2009

California towns face off with federal government

in court over military recruiting of minors

military_recruitment children

Source
June 12, 2009

Two towns nestled in the rugged coastline and the liberal politics of Northern California have fought the federal government by banning the U.S. military from recruiting minors within their city limits. Now the federal government is fighting back.

Arcata — a town known for taking a stand against the USA Patriot Act and repeatedly passing symbolic measures to impeach President George W. Bush — approved in November an ordinance that would limit Armed Forces recruiters’ ability to contact people under 18. And so did nearby Eureka, the Humboldt County seat.

The Department of Justice took the towns to court in December over their Youth Protection Acts, alleging they were attempting to interfere with the government’s ability to raise an army and protect the country. The department has said the ordinances are believed to be the only ones in the country with such blanket restrictions.

A federal judge is expected to rule on the case in coming days.

“We fully expected a challenge, and we got it,” said David Meserve, 60, a builder of environmentally friendly homes and former Arcata City Council member who spearheaded the measure. “But more importantly, people are becoming aware there is a problem — and the problem is the recruiting of minors.”

Although people must be 18 to enlist — or 17 with parental permission — recruiting manuals cited in the cities’ court filings show that contact with much younger children is encouraged.

“You will find that establishing trust and credibility with students, even seventh- and eighth-graders, can positively impact your high school and post-secondary school recruiting effort,” reads The Recruiter Handbook, published in 2008 by the United States Army Recruiting Command.

The push to reach the young makes sense. A 2007 Department of Defense study found that at 16 years old, more than 25 percent of students considered joining the Armed Forces. By the time they were 21, only 15 percent considered joining.

Towns and high school campuses around the country have tried to thwart the military’s access to their underage students. Berkeley declared that recruiters positioned within view of its high school were “unwelcome intruders.” San Francisco school board members moved to rid public schools of Junior Reserve Officers’ Training Corps but this week restored the program.

Counter-recruiters across the country have sought to inform students of their perspective on military service in times of war. They also tell parents how to opt out of having their child’s contact information released to recruiters — a requirement for schools receiving federal funds under the No Child Left Behind Act.

military recruitment-748648

Allen Weiner, a senior lecturer in law at Stanford Law School, said he knows of no other cities besides Arcata and Eureka that have passed ordinances banning military officials within their boundaries from initiating contact with minors with the intent of attracting them to any branch of the military.

The law is clear, Weiner said, that recruitment is under the purview of the federal government.

“As a legal fight, it’s pretty clear to me who wins,” he said.

Department of Justice officials did not respond to calls for comment. But in written arguments, government attorneys said the local measures violate the Supremacy Clause of the United States Constitution, which establishes the Constitution, federal statutes and treaties as the supreme law of the land.

“State and local governments lack the power to regulate the activities of the federal government,” said their motion to block the ordinances. “Even apart from this obvious constitutional flaw, the ordinances purport to legislate in a field that is committed to the sole discretion of the United States, namely, the Congressional power to raise armies.”

Local advocates such as Meserve remain undaunted.

Meserve said he took up the fight one morning while sitting in a coffee shop and overhearing a National Guard recruiter giving three high school girls a hard sell. The sharply dressed young man bought them fancy coffee drinks and pitched the career opportunities, the scholarships, the camaraderie, while assuring them there was virtually no chance they would end up in a war zone, Meserve said.

This was in 2005, when members of the National Guard were regularly being sent to Iraq, he said.

He found a supporter in Brad Yamauchi, an attorney working pro bono on the case.

The lawyer argues the ordinances prevent abuses without interfering with the federal government’s ability to fill the ranks of the military. Anyone, independent of age, can still reach out to the military, he said, and recruiters are free to contact adults.

“If they don’t contact minors, they can still meet their goals,” Yamauchi said. “We believe there are limits to the federal power to recruit children.”

Related articles

Non military options for youth

DC-area parents don’t want military survey for students

Military Recruiting Vans Draw Fire

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Eugenics comes to the USA

June 9, 2009


Yet another article confirming eugenics data being legally required of all babies born in the USA. I have blogged on this before: Baby’s DNA now stored in National Database – It’s the law.

Now I do not have a particular position on eugenics: I do, however, wonder why so many Americans do not know about the recently passed federal laws which mandate that all newborns will have their DNA stored in a national database. Once they find out, they can figure out what, if anything they want to do about it. At least we know Minnesota doesn’t like it.

DNA databases prelude to return of eugenics?
Warning issued over ‘full genomic scans’ on babies

by Bob Unruh
Global Research, June 8, 2009
World Net Daily – 2009-05-02
Source

An organization that has been battling Minnesota state procedures in which DNA from every newborn is collected and warehoused says virtually all states do the same thing, and the alarming trend eventually could lead the United States back into eugenics.

The report from Twila Brase, president of the Citizens’ Council on Health Care, says, “Throughout history, proponents of eugenics have focused on the reproduction of children, either through encouraging the ‘healthy’ to reproduce or discouraging the ‘unhealthy’ from procreation. This focus has been evidenced in history by 29 state sterilization laws … and the horrific Nazi campaign aimed at ridding Germany of the ‘unfit’ – the Jews, the physically deformed, the mentally retarded, the ‘feebleminded,’ the inferior, the epileptic, the deaf, the blind, ‘those suffering from hereditary conditions,’ the deviant ‘asocial’ and the politically dissident.”

The report then continued, “That the focus on reproduction still exists today is more than troubling.

“The authors of a 2001 study ‘were struck’ by the large number of state government officials who agreed with a specific statement regarding assessment of ua child’s suitability for future reproduction,” the report said. “Nineteen (54 percent) of 35 … respondents who routinely provide counseling – mostly newborn genetic screening follow-up staff at state health departments across the country – thought it important when giving advice to parents to ‘identify children who might be, for genetic reasons, unsuitable choices for future reproduction,'” the report said.

The concept of “identifying” those who would be “unsuitable” for reproduction is enough reason for parents to be alarmed, and people should start demanding fully informed consent requirements, Brase said.

“To protect every American’s right to self-determination, genetic privacy, and DNA property rights, it is time to require informed written parent consent for all facets of the newborn genetic screening program, including storage and use of genetic test results and newborn DNA,” Brase said.

She said most states do not require parental consent for newborn genetic testing now or for the government to keep the genetic results. Most states now keep DNA results for a period of time – some extending indefinitely.

“Most parents have no idea that government is doing the testing or retaining the data and DNA,” the report said.

“It is important for policymakers to look beyond the current newborn screening programs which test infants for only 21 to 60-some rare genetic conditions. Supporters of newborn screening appear to be planning for full genomic scans on every baby at birth,” warned Brase.

The organization’s website posted a report from a new grandmother who documented the medical industry’s insistence on taking that information, with or without permission.

In Minnesota, the CCHC has been battling the state Department of Health, which has been taking the DNA samples and warehousing but apparently not following “written consent requirements.”

The anonymous new grandmother there wrote:

“My daughter signed a paper stating she did not want the PKU test done because of the DNA stealing (I was there when she did that). The nurse huffed out of the room saying that stuff doesn’t happen. After my grandchild was born, a different nurse took the baby. My daughter her my granddaughter start crying. She found out her heel was getting pricked. My daughter became furious stating that she signed off on not getting the test. The nurse said there was nothing in her chart saying that. My daughter demanded the blood sample back. The nurse said they’d destroy it, but my daughter demanded it back and got it.”

Brase’s report warns the collection and assembly of DNA on an entire generation of citizens largely is unnoticed, but such newborn screening “represents the largest single application of genetic testing in medicine.”

“Suppose … expanded screening of an infant reveals not a fatal and incurable disease but instead a host of genetic variants, each of which merely confers elevated risk for some condition or other,” the report said. “Who is to say at what point an uncovered defect becomes serious enough to warrant preventing the birth of other children who might carry it? At what point have we crossed the line from legitimate family planning to capricious and morally dubious eugenics?”

The report said the concept that a population of people can be “improved” by eliminating those with any “defects” is relatively ignored these days. But, it said, “proponents are newborn genetic screening are moving toward eugenics – not away from it.”

In the United States, it was in 1927 when the U.S. Supreme Court opined, from Justice Oliver Wendell Holmes Jr.’s pen, “It is better for all he world, if instead of waiting to execute degenerate offspring for crime, or to let them starve for their imbecility, society can prevent those who are manifestly unfit from continuing their kind. The principle that sustains compulsory vaccination is broad enough to cover cutting the Fallopian tubes.”

Even now, similar beliefs exist, the report said.

“Is it thus noteworthy that the government-funded Sickle Cell Trust in Jamaica is now providing fifth and sixth grade students with the results of their sickle cell tests on a laminated card with the hope that they will ‘select partners with normal genes and avoid having a child with sickle-cell disease,'” the report said.

“Twenty states store newborn blood samples from one to 23 years,” the report said. ” With four million babies born each year and at least 10 states retaining newborn blood indefinitely, the repository of infant DNA is large and growing. The baby’s DNA is considered state government property.”

That’s even though surveys show one quarter of parents are unwilling to allow the government to use infant DNA information for research even with parental permission, and more than 70 percent oppose it when parents did not give permission.

Within the last month, lawsuits have been filed in both Minnesota and Texas by parents objecting to government collection and use of infant DNA.

If such information was limited to the parents, and eventually the individual person, there probably would be few complications. But the report raises the concern that’s not what would happen.

“Even the baby’s potential for behavioral problems and political proclivities could become a part of the government’s sequenced – and recorded – findings,” it said.

“It is not hard to imagine the day when any discovered but non-symptomatic condition could become a ‘pre-existing condition’ for which private insurers would not pay. The eugenic implications are obvious. Thus, the growing collection of genetic test results and newborn DNA could easily enable a eugenics agenda on the part of government agencies and private industry,” it said.

In an interview at the time the dispute over newborns’ DNA in Minnesota was heating up, Brase said it’s no longer just about diabetes, asthmas and cancer.

“It’s also about behavioral issues,” she said.

“In England they decided they should have doctors looking for problem children, and have those children reported, and their DNA taken in case they would become criminals,” she said.

In fact, published reports in the U.K. note that senior police forensics experts believe genetic samples should be studied, because it may be possible to identify potential criminals as young as age 5.

“If we have a primary means of identifying people before they offend, then in the long-term the benefits of targeting younger people are extremely large,” Gary Pugh, director of forensics at Scotland Yard, was quoted saying. “You could argue the younger the better. Criminologists say some people will grow out of crime; others won’t. We have to find who are possibly going to be the biggest threat to society.”

The U.K. database already has 4.5 million genetic samples and reportedly is the largest in Europe, but activists want to expand it. Pugh said that it is not possible right now to demand everyone provide a DNA sample but only because of the costs and logistics.

One published report cited the Institute for Public Policy Research, which is suggesting children from 5-12 in the U.K. be targeted with cognitive behavioral therapy, and Pugh has suggested adding the children in primary schools to the database, even if they have not offended.

“Not all research is great,” Brase said. “There is research that is highly objectionable into the genetic propensities of an individual. Not all research should be hailed as wonderful initiatives.”

The Heartland Regional Genetics and Newborn Screening is one of the organizations that advocates more screening and research.

It proclaims in its vision statement a desire to see newborns screened for 200 conditions. It also forecasts “every student … with an individual program for education based on confidential interpretation of their family medical history, their brain imaging, their genetic predictors of best learning methods…”

Further, every individual should share information about “personal and family health histories” as well as “gene tests for recessive conditions and drug metabolism” with the “other parent of their future children.”

Still further, it seeks “ecogenetic research that could improve health, lessen disability, and lower costs for sickness.”

“They want to test every child for 200 conditions, take the child’s history and a brain image, and genetics, and come up with a plan for that child,” Brase said. “They want to learn their weaknesses and defects.

“Nobody including and especially the government should be allowed to create such extensive profiles,” she said.

The next step is obvious: The government, with information about potential health weaknesses, could say to couples, “We don’t want your expensive children,” Brase said.
Global Research Articles by Bob Unruh

Related:

The Rabbit Hole Doesn’t End Here

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Double, double, toil and trouble: Fire burn and cauldron bubble.

May 31, 2009


‘Double, double, toil and trouble: Fire, burn, and cauldron, bubble.’
-The Witches, 4.1, Macbeth

Not in eighty years have the conditions for global revolution been so ripe. A glance at the following thirteen headlines, taken together, should be enough to alarm anyone with synaptic activity that revolutionary consciousness is awakening internationally.
Why now? Because never has so much affluence been lost in the Western standard of living than in the period we are currently experiencing. And things will get worse. The rich will get richer, the poor will get poorer and the middle class is quickly disappearing.

The more protests and demonstrations, the better; the quicker the Masters of the Universe will get the message that they cannot rule people who are unwilling to be impoverished for the coffers of the Elite. Capitalism is dying an ugly death; but in the end, people will not care about ideology – they will care about the decline in the stardard of living to which they have become accustomed.

People are about to change the Darwinistic political/economic paradigm that has dominated earth for so long. And there will be blood.

Truly wise Masters of the Universe would act now to eliminate the suffering of ordinary people. However, it does seem we are ruled by madmen. Time for a challenge to the status quo; and the cauldron is seething.

Injustice boils in men’s hearts as does steel in its cauldron,
ready to pour forth,
white hot,
in the fullness of time. -Mother Jones

European farmers protest to demand help on milk prices

May 26, 2009

Furious farmers have blockaded roads and forced a halt to production at scores of dairies as part of Europe-wide protests designed to reverse a slump in the wholesale price of milk.

As they gathered on Monday, European Union farm ministers met to discuss the crisis, with nations divided over those wanting the quota system, set to be scrapped within six years, maintained in one form or another.

In Brussels, farm tractors blocked major roads in the city’s European quarter, where police said about 900 demonstrators had rallied to make their voices heard by the agriculture ministers.

Riot police were seen trying to hold back the protesters, who converged on the Belgian capital from 10 countries, but the farmers broke through their barricade, despite receiving truncheon blows from some officers. Read entire article

FACTBOX-Trade union activity in Western Europe

May 28, 2009

Unions across Europe protesting. Read entire article

Civil Unrest

Michael C. Ruppert
27/02/09

It Seems as if The World is Holding Its Breath for Obama’s change…

Already devastated by auto layoffs and other massive corporate failures, Ohio’s industrial areas border and are in close proximity to Kentucky, West Virginia, Indiana and Pennsylvania. Lots of kindling in those states. At the same time as Ohio is devastated by DHL, auto and other layoffs, much of the nation’s high-tech wind turbine industry in Ohio is also shutting down at the same time… just when we need it. The snake eats its own tail for nutrition. It is the way money works… for now.

Civil unrest in Ohio could easily infect across state lines here, and cross another fault line that runs east and west, separating north from south; the Mason Dixon. Other earthquakes might be triggered. Eastward from Ohio are Pennsylvania and New Jersey. I wonder how much inter-agency advance planning DHS and FEMA have gone through so that they might operate fluidly across many borders, radio frequencies and jurisdictions. Those contingencies were planned for in the Patriot Act which congress didn’t or couldn’t read before voting on it. Read article

George Soros, the man who broke the Bank,
sees a global meltdown

March 28, 2009

This recession, he explains, is a “once-in-a-lifetime event”, particularly in Britain. “This is a crisis unlike any other. It’s a total collapse of the financial system with tremendous implications for everyday life. On previous occasions when you had a crisis that was threatening the system the authorities intervened and did whatever was necessary to protect the system. This time they failed.” Read entire article

California’s new budget proposal
slashes welfare, releases inmates

By Kevin Yamamura
The Sacramento Bee

In California’s latest doom-and-gloom announcement, Gov. Arnold Schwarzenegger’s Department of Finance on Tuesday proposed closing the state’s main welfare program, releasing nonviolent prisoners one year early and shuttering up to 80 percent of state parks to shrink the state’s $24.3 billion budget deficit. Read entire article

Amnesty Report Warns World on
Verge of Global Unrest

29 May 2009

Amnesty International released its annual report yesterday, warning that that the world is on the verge of global unrest, with existing poverty severely worsened by the international economic crisis. In every major geographic area the report details conditions relating to social and economic insecurity, poverty and deprivation, and more. Read entire article

World Bank warns of social unrest

World Bank President Robert Zoellick has warned of the destabilising effects of unemployment.

The head of the World Bank has warned that the global economic crisis could lead to serious social upheaval.

“If we do no take measures, there is a risk of a serious human and social crisis with very serious political implications,” Robert Zoellick said. Read entire article

Cities across the world become platform for hundreds of thousands of protesters against Gaza fighting

11th January 2009

Cities across the world became the platform for protest on Israel’s military action in Gaza today.

Organisers said more than 250,000 people marched through Spain’s capital of Madrid, with other European cities including Athens, Brussels, Rome, Naples Frankfurt, Munich and Berlin also the focal points of protesters.

The protest in Madrid was the largest of demonstrations across Europe, although there were expressions of both support and opposition for the Israeli offensive in Gaza. Read article; see photos

More EU protests planned over unemployment

May 15, 2009

MADRID, Spain (CNN) — Protests are expected to continue in Brussels on Friday after tens of thousands marched on the streets of Spain’s capital Thursday to demand better protection for workers hit hard by the economic crisis. Thousands take part in the Madrid demonstration, organized by the European Trade Confederation.

Dressed in funeral black to mourn the estimated 4 million jobless in Spain, demonstrators had a simple message for the government: Enough corporate bailouts; it’s time to focus on the workers. Read article

Up to 100,000 demonstrate in Berlin for more job protection

16.05.2009

The protests came only two weeks after massive demonstrations on May 1. Up to 100,000 protestors have marched through the heart of Berlin, demanding the government do more to protect jobs during the recession. The rally was part of a series of protests across the European Union.

Trade union officials said 100,000 people took part in Berlin’s protest, while police put the total at “several tens of thousands”.

The rally was organized by the Confederation of German Trade Unions (DGB) as part of a series of four demonstrations across Europe with the motto “Fight the crisis. Europe needs a new social deal”.

Amidst Germany’s deepest recession since World War Two, unemployment has risen consecutively in the past 6 months and forecasts for the coming year are even bleaker. Demonstrators accused the government of putting big business first, and not doing enough to protect the people. Read entire article

Economic crisis damaging human rights, report says

ELITSA VUCHEVA
28.05.2009

EUOBSERVER / BRUSSELS – Human rights violations remained widespread across the world in 2008, including Europe, with the global economic crisis not only aggravating the existing problems, but creating new ones as well, human rights group Amnesty International’s yearly report released on Thursday (28 May) shows.

“The global economic crisis is an explosive human rights crisis. A combination of social, economic and political problems has created a [across the world],” said Irene Khan, the group’s secretary general.

“There are growing signs of political unrest and violence, adding to the global insecurity that already exists because of deadly conflicts which the international community seems unable or unwilling to resolve. In other words: we are sitting on a powder keg of inequality, injustice and insecurity, and it is about to explode,” she wrote in the introduction to Amnesty’s report on the situation of human rights in the world. Read article

France NATO protesters, police clash; Michelle Obama hospital visit cancelled over security worries

April 4th 2009

STRASBOURG, France — Black-clad protesters attacked police and set a customs station ablaze Saturday on a bridge linking France and Germany that served hours earlier as the backdrop for a show of unity by NATO leaders.

AP photographers saw other protesters storm a nearby Ibis hotel, setting fires and pilfering alcohol from its bar.

Stacks of old tires were also set ablaze, unleashing thick plumes of black smoke that could be seen from across the river. Near the bonfire was a sign welcoming visitors to Strasbourg.

First lady Michelle Obama and other spouses canceled a visit to a cancer hospital out of concern for security, the French president’s office said. Some 1,000 protesters were staked out near the hospital they were to visit.

Some of the protesters say they want an end to war and call NATO a tool of Western imperialism. Others simply appear bent on causing chaos. Read article

Civil Unrest in America?

José Miguel Alonso Trabanco
Global Research
March 9, 2009

The only thing that can be taken for granted and that one can be sure of is that the unthinkable has now become thinkable.

Zbigniew Brzezinski, former National Security Advisor and early supporter of Barack Obama’s presidential campaign, has warned that civil unrest on American soil is a possibility that should not be dismissed. Brzezinski explains that “[the United States is] going to have millions and millions of unemployed, people really facing dire straits. And we’re going to be having that for some period of time before things hopefully improve. And at the same time there is public awareness of this extraordinary wealth that was transferred to a few individuals at levels without historical precedent in America…” Brzezinski concludes with this noteworthy remark “…hell, there could be even riots”….

Professor Michel Chossudovsky observed that the US Army 3rd Infantry’s 1st Brigade Combat Team returned from Iraq some months ago. That information is extremely disturbing because such military unit “may be called upon to help with civil unrest and crowd control”, according to official sources. Now, what scenario could possibly require the operational deployment of said units on American soil? Professor Chossudovsky puts forward an intriguing hypothesis that must be borne in mind. He argues that “Civil unrest resulting from from the financial meltdown is a distinct possibility, given the broad impacts of financial collapse on lifelong savings, pension funds, homeownership, etc”. Read full article

Some day the workers will take possession of your city hall, and when we do, no child will be sacrificed on the altar of profit! -Mother Jones

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Cronyism alive and well

May 6, 2009

Study reveals true extent of ‘old boys network’ between Government and banks

03 May 2009
By Tom Peterkin, Scottish Political Editor
Source
LINKS between Government and the banking sector have been condemned in a new report that has uncovered the extent of the “old boys network” at the top of British public life.
Britain has a greater culture of cronyism than Europe or the US, according to the study, which identified key individuals who have moved jobs between politics, financial institutions and the bodies charged with regulating the banking industry.

The report warns the close relations between business and politics “lead to a confl ict of interest at best and a suspension of critical faculties at worst”.

The study of 116 of the world’s most successful companies will be presented to a Global Forum on Public Governance, run by the Organisation for Economic Co-operation and Development (OECD), in Paris this week.

The research looked at so-called “revolving door connections”, when a company employs former or current politicians, civil servants or members of regulatory bodies, or where individuals move from the financial sector into politics, Government or regulatory bodies.

Barclays was the most connected British-based company with 14 revolving door connections.

Two of the Barclays examples were Mark Clarke and Sarah Cox. Clarke is director general of finance at the Department for Business, Enterprise and Regulatory Reform, but worked at Barclays from 2000 to 2003. Cox was an international consultant at Barclays from 2001 to 2004 and has since joined the UK Cabinet Office’s business support group.

“The Government and the political classes have very close links to the banking industry,” said the report’s author David Miller, a Professor of Sociology at Strathclyde University, who specialises in researching lobbying.

“I believe this could be one of the factors behind the disaster that has befallen the financial markets. There has not been enough regulation of these connections.”

The organisations with more than five revolving door connections were Royal Bank of Scotland, HBOS/Lloyds Group, Barclays, Citigroup, Credit Suisse, Deutsche Bank, Dexia Group, HSBC Holdings, JP Morgan Chase and Co, Standard Chartered Bank and UBS.

Six individuals with RBS connections included Quentin Davies, Labour MP and a minister at the Ministry of Defence, who was an RBS adviser until 2003, and Sir Philip Hampton, RBS’s chairman, former chief executive of the Government-owned UK Financial Investments.

Perhaps the best known person with HBOS connections named in the report is Sir James Crosby, who was chief executive of the bank from 2001 to 2006 before leaving to become deputy chairman of the Financial Services Authority (FSA), the UK body responsible for regulating the financial sector.

Crosby resigned from the FSA after claims by the whistleblower Paul Moore, the former head of risk at HBOS, that he mismanaged the bank.

Three revolving door connections were identified at Standard Life, including Gerry Grimstone, the chairman of the board who was appointed as one of the UK’s Business Ambassadors in January.

Paul Flynn, Labour MP and member of Westminster’s Public Administration Select Committee, said:

“Coziness is the enemy of efficiency and coziness leads to a lazy brainedness and a lack of thinking and inventiveness.”

A Barclays spokesman said: “Barclays recruits people on the basis of their skills and experience, whether as full-time staff, as non-executive directors or as part-time advisers.

“Where they may have held senior roles in the public sector, their recruitment is undertaken in line with governmental and civil service governance policies.”

A spokeswoman for Scottish Financial Enterprise, the body that represents the Scottish financial services industry, said: “From our point of view, the greater the understanding between business and the public sector the better.”

A Standard Life spokesman said: “It’s important that any board has a wide variety of backgrounds and experience, which is what we have at Standard Life.”

RBS and HBOS declined to comment.

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Things I read Jan 30, 09 – Boiling frogs and dollars

January 30, 2009

Unemployment rate soars
“There are literally millions of workers unemployed with no hope of finding a new job,” she said. “The queue is just too long.”…A new survey by the Society for Human Resource Management also found that nearly 75 percent of human resource professionals from U.S. companies were expecting deeper job cuts in the U.S. labor force in the next few months.

Special Forces Unconventional Warfare Operations
Yes the past and future from the horses mouth…I have blogged on this before here. Search ‘irregular warfare’.

Russian, Chinese PMs seek to seize control of the dollar
Whether or not Americans realise it, this is the worst possible news for them. By far the story they should be most afraid of. This is the beginning of the end for the dollar, Act IV of the tragedy.

“…the Putin and Wen call to regulate the dollar is a clear power play that would threaten the basic sovereignty of the U.S. government. It also reflects a new upsurge in Sino-Russian cooperation against the United States…”

Global Consciousness Project -Trans-Humanity Awakening To Reality
Do you think it’s possible to think our way out of this mess??

Military And New Orleans Police Conducting Nite Time Helicopter Drills In City
Yeah no worries folks. If you put a frog in a pot of cold water and bring it slowly to a boil, the frog won’t even realize that you are in the process of boiling it.

Congress Seeks To Authorize & Legalize FEMA Camp Facilities
Froggies…CODE RED CODE RED!

Pew: Almost half of Americans want to live somewhere else

Officials: Army suicides at 3-decade high
WARNING – Taking the blossom of youth and training them to bomb, mutilate and torture other humans could be damaging to their health.

Iraq soldier crying
So many tears from so many people in so many countries. When will we learn that when we kill someone else, we kill ourselves too?

More Orwellian horror for English people.

Why Americans get a distorted View of the Conflict between Israel and Palestinians
The construction of delusion is in the details From Rainbow Warriors blog.

Up Yours
English froggies jumping out of the pot….. GO FROGGIES GO!

Obama’s First Acts Of War

Names and Photos of Israeli War Criminals in Gaza
Many of these people may be charged by the Hague. Put nicely in context in Smoking Mirrors blog here. Don’t wait long to look…these pictures have a way of disappearing.

I don’t like to leave the bad news of the day without a little something…a spoonful of sugar helps the medicine go down…so they say. Here is a picture of the ‘glass frog’.

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Things I read Jan 22, 2009 – Welcome to Bizzaro World

January 22, 2009


200,000 war veterans homeless in US
Mission accomplished!


Jimmy Carter’s Wise Counsel
You cannot have prosperity and liberty if you are always at war. Whereas other recent presidents have seemed oblivious to this fact, the Vietnam experience seems to have made Carter realize it.

Obama throngs replaced by March for Life crowds
Wouldn’t it be interesting to know if these protesters also condemn the death penalty and the slaughter of Gaza’s & Iraq’s innocent (already born) children?


SKorean blogger charged with spreading false info
Better watch what you say on the net.

Life is strange and cruel.
Beauty queen loses hands and feet.

Argentine prez: Fidel Castro ‘believes in Obama’
Who am I to argue with Fidel? “Earlier Wednesday, Raul Castro said Obama “seemed like a good man” and wished him luck.”


2 condemned to death for role in China milk crisis
How quickly corporations would protect consumers and the environment if they were treated as the criminals they are. It’s one way to save the planet. Right on China…Monsanto…you are next.

Report: Belgian court petitioned to arrest Livni upon arrival in Brussels
A good idea – and the only way to chastise monsters…arrest them if they set foot in the EU. This might also restore the faith of EU citizens in the EU.

U.S. To Sharpen Cyber-Weaponry
Bye bye internet freedom…don’t you know…this is a war zone?

Big brother filter plan insults parents
Australian parental role to be assumed by Big Brother. Your country is next.

Spanking = Terrorism
My daughter’s boyfriend was convicted of ‘terrorist’ threats 3 years ago for calling her while drunk and belligerent. Yep, we are all terrorists now.