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Wednesday, 3 September 2014

Patriarchal Catholic Church and the Great Nunquisition

Today's generation of nuns are progressive women, two things the Church isn't used to. Nuns are an endangered species. They are dying and not being replaced. If you think the news is bad now, a world without nuns would be a far worse place. The nuns that I know are much too humble to tout their achievements and all of the good they contribute to society, but make no mistake, they are an integral part of the fabric that holds our civilization together. In 2014 there were just 49,883 religious Catholic sisters in the United States, down 13% percent from 2010 according to figures from the Center for Applied Research in the Apostolate. To put it in greater perspective, that is a 72% decline since 1965.

ISIS is America's newest terror brand in endless propaganda that fuels "War on Terror"

In the wake of World War I, erstwhile propagandist and political scientist Harold Lasswell famously defined propaganda as "the management of collective attitudes" and the "control over opinion" through "the manipulation of significant symbols."[1] The extent to which this tradition is enthusiastically upheld in the West and the United States in particular is remarkable. The American public is consistently propagandized by its government and corporate news media on the most vital of contemporary issues and events. Deception on such a scale would be of little consequence if the US were not the most powerful economic and military force on earth. A case in point is the hysteria Western news media are attempting to create concerning the threat posed by the mercenary-terrorist army now being promoted as the Islamic State of Iraq and Greater Syria, or "ISIS." As was the case with the US intelligence asset and bogey publicized as "Al Qaeda," and Al Qaeda's Syrian adjunct, "Al Nusra," such entities are - apparently by design - inadequately investigated and defined by major news media. Absent meaningful historical context they usefully serve as another raison d'ểtre for America's terminal "War on Terror." A seemingly obvious feature of such terrorist forces left unexamined by corporate media is that they are observably comprised of the same or comparable personnel unleashed elsewhere throughout the Middle East as part of a strategy proposed during the George W. Bush administration in 2007.[2] With the above observations in mind, ISIS is well-financed, militarily proficient, and equipped with modern vehicles and weaponry. It also exhibits an uncanny degree of media savvy in terms of propagating its message in professional-looking videos and on platforms such as YouTube and Twitter. "Western intelligence services," the New York Times reports, claim to be "worried about their extraordinary command of seemingly less lethal weapons: state-of-the-art videos, ground images shot from drones, and multilingual Twitter messages."[3] Along these lines, ISIS even received a largely sympathetic portrayal in a five-part series produced and aired by the Rupert Murdoch-backed Vice News.[4] Indeed, Vice News' "The Spread of the Caliphate" is reminiscent of the public relations-style reportage produced via the "embedding" of corporate news media personnel with US and allied forces during the 2003 conquest of Iraq.

The patient is now past the point of no return thanks to the Fed

Many commentators consider what the Fed has done to be akin to providing stimulus, morphine, juice to an ailing economy. We believe Fed's actions would be more appropriately described as permitted cancerous beliefs to spread throughout the financial system, thereby killing Democratic Capitalism which is the basis of the capital markets. Today we're going to explain what the "final outcome" for this process will be. The short version is what happens to a cancer patient who allows the disease to spread unchecked (death). In the case of the Fed's actions we will see a similar "death" of Democratic Capitalism and the subsequent death of the capital markets. We are, of course, talking in metaphors here: the world will not end, and commerce and business will continue, but the form of capital markets and Capitalism we are experiencing today will cease to exist as the Fed's policies result in the market and economy eventually collapsing in such a fashion that what follows will bear little resemblance to that which we are experiencing now.The focus of this "death" will not be stocks, but bonds, particularly sovereign bonds: the asset class against which all monetary policy and investment theory has been based for the last 80+ years. Indeed, basic financial theory has proposed that sovereign bonds are essentially the only true "risk-free" investment in the world. While history shows this theory to be false (sovereign defaults have occurred throughout the 20th century) this has been the basic tenant for all investment models and indeed the financial system at large going back for 80 some odd years. The reason for this is that the Treasury (US sovereign bond) market is the basis of the entire monetary system in the US and the Global financial system in general. Indeed, US Treasuries are the senior most assets on the Primary Dealers' (world's largest banks) balance sheets. To understand why this is as well as why the Fed's policies will ultimately destroy this system, you first need to understand the Primary Dealer system that is the basis for the US banking system at large.

Manipulating the emotions of the masses: War criminal Ollie North says war criminal Obama doesn't pay attention

The Obama Administration is furtively guarding their chosen strategy to deal with ISIL. This is reminiscent of a certain White House Correspondents' dinner where the President calmly played the part of a relaxed president enjoying a moment of levity. Meanwhile, the wheels were set in motion on a daring mission to get Osama Bin Laden once and for all. President Obama is, as Commander in Chief and Chief Executive, entitled to execute the strategy of his choosing. Divulging too much information is ill-advised. The Bin Laden raid showed us just that. The Right just isn't having it. They want to be consulted on any military operation after bankrupting the country and ruining the lives of millions with their pre-emptive wars that were so poorly planned. Comment: This article starts off defending Obama with the rationale that he is using secrecy as a policy similar to when the U.S. supposedly killed Osama bin Laden. See this, this and this for a more realistic view of those events. Fox's curvy weekend couch-occupants figured who would be better to explain sound military policy than the man who traded arms for hostages and is damned lucky not to be making license plates in a federal penitentiary. Tucker 'Bowtie' Carlson introduced Oliver North with this ballsy statement: There's none who's respected more by the people who fight wars than our next guest, Colonel North. Yes, because war is something that should be perpetual and who better than a war profiteer to rally the bloodlust of the xenophobic base?

Ukraine's Yatsenyuk calls for NATO's help

Ukrainian Prime Minister Arseniy Yatsenyuk declared his country's intention to join NATO a few days ago, officially flip-flopping from his stance expressed nearly half a year ago. He said that the government was submitting a bill to the Rada to officially change Ukraine's non-aligned status and also de-facto prohibit it from ever joining the Eurasian Union. It is unclear how he plans to pass the bill, considering that the Rada had been unilaterally dissolved earlier this month. Nonetheless, with Poroshenko and Yatsenyuk being the only politicians to still have power after this recent de-facto political purge, it is more than likely that they will make sure their military ambitions are 'legitimized' by hook or by crook, thereby pulling Shadow NATO out of the closet into the limelight. Military Failures and False Flag Invasions The timing of Kiev's not-so-unexpected decision to officially announce its intent to join NATO is strongly influenced by its recent string of military failures against the Novorossiya Armed Forces (NAF). This reality is completely opposite to the victory hype that was being prematurely pushed earlier this month. At that time, Kiev was all but claiming victory against the pro-Federalists, completely dismissing any talks of a ceasefire and proclaiming its march on besieged Donetsk and Lugansk. Today, however, NAF is waging a successful counteroffensive against Kiev, has reached the Sea of Azov, and even encircled thousands of Ukrainian troops. So successful has this counteroffensive been that President Putin lauded the NAF and encouraged them to show mercy by opening up a humanitarian corridor to allow Kiev's forces to safely (and without their arms) retreat into Russia. Such are the fortunes of war, and Kiev is likely kicking itself for not having accepted the ceasefire earlier this month.

Killer whales of Puget Sound are acting strange with population declining fast

The killer whale population in the Puget Sound, a sound in Washington state whose area includes Seattle, is rapidly declining. No whales have been born since 2012, two years ago. Two whales died this year. The Center for Whale Research said that the whale population has grown as low as 78, the lowest it's been in the past 20 years, since 1985. The whales are also acting erratically, and seem to be splitting up from their social groups, called pods. There are three pods that make up the population in the Sound, pods J, K, and L. Ken Balcomb, a researcher who works in Washington, has been studying the orca population in the Puget Sound since 1976. Every year, he does a census of the whales, which he gives to the U.S. government. These "Southern Residents," as they are called by environmental scientists, are under federal protection by the Endangered Species Act. The three pods that live in the sound usually congregate during the summer, but in the last few years the pods have seemed to be splintering apart. These small groups have been tending to stay away from each other. Balcomb said that two or three members from a pod have been swimming around in their own group, with some members from different pods joining each other. The whales seem to be making a new social order.

Systemic child abuse: British boarding schools reporting an epidemic of sex abuse claims

At lights out one Sunday evening within weeks of starting at his senior school, Joel Shaw was "stripped, sexually assaulted and publicly humiliated by my housemaster jeered on by loads of my peers", he recalls bitterly. It resulted, he claims, in him being remorselessly taunted as being this master's 'Bum­Boy', a nickname seared into his memory and one that dogged him throughout his school career. "I want an apology," says Joel (not his real name). He has recently made a claim for damages against the boarding school where he was allegedly abused nearly 30 years ago at the age of 13. "I want an acknowledgement abuse happened and also recognition of how it affected me." The taunting - publicly, vocally, and therefore known to other staff at the school - only reinforced his feelings of anger and shame at what he says was done to him. He remains conflicted about the close relationship he subsequently developed with the teacher, who, he says, took pains to nurture his enthusiasms and helped shape his deep appreciation of the arts. The confusion for a teenager was agonising, he says, and, as a man, the shame remains. Last year, to Shaw's horror, his alleged abuser emailed him at his place of work, "asking whether I'd care to 'indulge in some nostalgic reminiscences'", he says. "I broke out into a cold sweat, given the abuse that he'd subjected me to as a new boarder. This is only conjecture, but I think he liked me, and wanted to revive good memories of times we spent in his living room when we put the school magazine together, drinking lager, listening to his amazing classical music collection," says Shaw. Feeling shaken, furious and shocked by the approach "out of the blue, after so many years", Shaw made a complaint to police. His old housemaster was questioned but there will be no criminal prosecution: he is the only complainant and under the legislation in force at the time, the type of abuse he was subjected to is not covered.

6 dead after widespread flooding in Thailand

Thailand's Department of Disaster Prevention and Mitigation (DDPM) reported on Monday 01 September 2014 that at least 17 provinces have been affected by recent flooding. Six people have been killed and at least 1 person remains missing. Thai Meteorological Department had warned of the flood threat last week. From 26 August, a low pressure weather system left many areas of the country experiencing heavy rainfall. DPMD said that the affected provinces are: Mae Hong Son, Lam Pang, Kamphaeng Phet, Kalasin, Buri Ram, Samut Prakan, Nakhon Si Thammarat, Nakhon Ratchasima, Phetchabun, Loei, Phayao, Nan, Sukhothai, Phitsanulok, Phichit, Chiang Rai and Chiang Mai. By late Monday 01 September the flood situation was thought to be easing in many of the provinces, although severe flooding remained in parts of Chiang Rai, Chiang Mai and Phichit. The situation there is likely to remain the same for the next 48 hours or more.