Monday, November 12, 2012

Greece back on the Brink, IEA Projects US Oil Bonanza and a Betting on a Grand Fiscal Bargain!

This weekend Athens passed a new austerity budget for 2013 with public sector cuts and privatization measures. Greece's parliament passed the austerity budget hoping it would clear the way for the release of the next tranche of bailout money. However, Eurozone finance ministers are not expected to approve the funds today. These austerity votes have also meant the governing center coalition is losing members. We ask Yannis Palaiologos, a journalist in Athens, if Greece is on the verge of new elections all over again.

"Hole In The Wall" Israel: France is Entirely Jewish Run - Daryl Bradford Smith

By Almost all of the defense industries are owned by a Jewish family. And Israel's real role is to protect criminals. Rude comments get deleted. Source

Big Brother UK: 8 million children recorded on massive secret database

A newly uncovered clandestine computer network, known as the ‘One System,’ can reportedly share children’s personal details across different UK agencies, including age, sex, address and their school behavior records – all without parents ever knowing.
(AFP Photo / Getty Images)One of Britain’s biggest government contractors has created a database containing the personal details of 8 million children, the Sunday Times revealed.
The database was created by Capita – a company specializing in IT systems – and includes information on a child’s sex, age, exam results, if they have special needs, bad behavior like absenteeism and how many minutes late they are to lessons.
This information can then be shared with numerous agencies, including the police, the NHS and child protection units and charities, all without parental consent.
Teachers collect data on all children, not just ones deemed to be at risk. This includes recording how many minutes late they are for class.
While information is absolutely essential to protect children, you need to collect information about children who are at risk and not every child,” Nick Pickles

China and Russia are Acquiring Gold, Dumping US Dollars

Central Banks are Acquiring Gold, Dumping US DollarsBy Prof Michel Chossudovsky: There is evidence that central banks in several regions of the World are building up their gold reserves. What is published are the official purchases.
A large part of these Central Bank purchases of gold bullion are not disclosed. They are undertaken through third party contracting companies, with utmost discretion. 
US dollar holdings and US dollar denominated debt instruments are in effect being traded in for gold, which in turn puts pressure on the US dollar.  
In turn, both China and Russia have boosted domestic production of gold, a large share of  which is being purchased by their central banks:
It has long been assumed that China is surreptitiously building up its gold reserves through buying local production. Russia is another major gold miner where the Central bank has been purchasing gold from another state entity, Gokhran, which is the marketing arm and central repository for the country’s mined gold production. Now it has been reported by Bloomberg that the Venezuelan Central Bank director, Jose Khan, has said that country will boost its gold reserves through purchasing more than half the gold produced from its rapidly growing domestic gold mining industry.
In Russia, for example, Gokhran sold some 30 tonnes of gold to the Central Bank in an internal accounting exercise late last year. In part, so it was said at the time, the direct sale was made rather than placing the metal on the open market and perhaps adversely affecting the gold price.
China is currently the world’s largest gold producer and last year it confirmed it had raised its own Central Bank gold holdings by more than 450 tones over the previous six years.

Starbucks wakes up and smells the stench of tax avoidance controversy

Cafe chain executive to face questions from MPs, while protesters plan to turn branches into creches and refuges
Simon Neville and Shiv Malik: On an average day its outlets are a hive of social activity, hosting everything from business meetings to reading groups looking for that all-important appointment with a morning caffeine rush, approvingly overlooked by a branded community bulletin board. But Starbucks should be careful what it wishes for.
The direct action group UK Uncut plans to turn dozens of the coffee empire's UK branches into creches, refuges and homeless shelters to highlight the chain's tax avoidance tactics.
The announcement of the action comes on the day a Starbucks executive faces questions from the House of Commons public accounts committee over why the company paid no corporation tax in the UK during the past three years, despite senior US management trumpeting the company's profitable operations in Britain.
MPs will also question management representatives from Google and Amazon, both of which have faced criticism for basing their European operations in countries that have lower tax rates such as Ireland and Luxembourg.

Most Icelanders oppose joining the European Union

By EUOBSERVER: Most Icelanders are opposed to joining the EU. A fresh opinion poll published Monday by Capacent Gallup said 57.6% are against membership while 27.3% support it. The rest is 'undecided'. Only the Social Democratic Alliance (Samfylkingin) which heads the current coalition government in Iceland has a majority of yes-voters. Source

Support for Greece’s far-right Golden Dawn swells amid wave of racial violence

Members of the Greek extreme-right ultra nationalist party Golden Dawn (AFP Photo / Sakis Mitrolidis)
Greece’s Anti bankster Nationalist Golden Dawn party is gaining popularity in the midst of the country’s deepening financial crisis. The group has been implicated in torture cases, and for inciting a wave of racial violence sweeping the country.
RT: An opinion poll published by KAPA Research in October showed that support for the extremist political group had grown from 7.5 percent of the population in June to 10.4 percent currently.
Members of the Greek extreme-right ultra nationalist party Golden Dawn (AFP Photo / Sakis Mitrolidis)
The Golden Dawn emerged from political obscurity into the mainstream in May after winning 7 percent of the vote in the Greek parliamentary elections. Since then, the country has reportedly witnessed an upsurge in racial violence connected to the right-wing group.
"Violence is getting wilder and wilder and we still have the same pattern of attacks… committed by groups of people in quite an organized way," Kostis Papaioannou, former head of the Greek National Commission for Human Rights told AP.
Out of the 18 MPs selected in June to represent the Golden Dawn in parliament, four are under investigation for violent attacks and have been stripped of their parliamentary immunity.
While addressing parliament in October, MP Eleni Zaroulia referred to immigrants as “subhuman,” while Efstathios Boukouras allegedly attacked the mayor of Corinth with a whip in July.

General betrayal: the CIA, the murder of Ambassador Stevens and the return of Iran-Contra

By Richard Cottrell: If you believe ex-General David Petraeus, freshly sacked ex-Director of the CIA, quietly resigned because he was caught with his pants down once too often, then you have fallen for the biggest cover-up in US politics since the Iran-Contra scandal back in the 1980s.
Once again we have the same old mix of shunting illegal arms shipments around the world to suit US policies and objectives. Once again, playing both ends against the middle. Once again, convoluted CIA plotting and scheming that was bound to end badly. And yet again, blatant lying to the American people and the Congress to conceal a scandal of multiplying and increasingly dangerous dimensions.
Petraeus resigned precipitately on the eve of testifying to Congress on the circumstances of the bloody assassination of J. Christopher Stevens, US ambassador to Libya, on the 9/11 anniversary this year. Stevens was allegedly attacked by a so-called crowd of maddened jihadists at the embassy’s offshoot consulate in the eastern Libyan city of Benghazi.
This is a contrived smokescreen concocted to conceal the fact that Obama not only knew the truth about the events in Benghazi, he personally refused to order military re-enforcements despite multiple requests from US officials both on the ground and in Washington.
On September 27, 2012, three days after the attack, mainstream media broadcast a report that full-scale military assistance to the embattled consulate had been denied. We also know that commanders of US forces in Tripoli, who could have easily intervened, received orders from the highest levels in the Pentagon to stand down.
There is no great mystery there. The United States goes to great lengths to obscure the presence and strength of US military forces on the ground in Libya.
The ambassador was taken out –‘erased’ in common secret service parlance – because he was the lynchpin of an extraordinary conspiracy

Israel threatens Palestine over UN membership?!

Earlier this week, Israeli Prime Minister Benyamin Netanyahu along with 8 of his senior ministers have discussed Israeli repercussion to the unilateral Palestinian move to seek non-member status at the United Nations General Assembly later on in November.

Acting PA Chief Mahmoud Abbas addressed the Israeli threats during an speech made at the 8 year commemoration ceremony of Yaser Araft’s death.

The Israeli government threatened to implement punitive measures including freezing the distribution of funds to the PA and revoking the special privileges of senior Palestinian leaders, In addition to threat made by Israeli foreign minister Avigdor Lieberman to dismantle the Palestinian Authority.

Britain could intervene in Syria within months - top UK general

Britain's Chief of the Defence Staff General David Richards.(Reuters / Handout)
The UK’s most senior general said on a BBC interview Sunday that Britain had in place contingency plans for a “very limited” response in the case of a "worsening humanitarian situation" (UK and others have created) in Syria within the next few months.
The admission from Chief of the Defense Staff General Sir David Richards is the most serious warning yet that Britain is preparing for some kind of military involvement in Syria.
It seems that British policy has now shifted from trying to support and organize the disparate rebel groups to considering full-blown military action.
The situation this winter I think may deteriorate and may well provoke calls to intervene in a limited way,” General Richards told the BBC’s Andrew Marr Show.  
“It’s my job, amongst other people in my sort of position, to make sure these options are continually brushed over to make sure we can deliver them,” he continued.
Defense Secretary Phillip Hammond, who was interviewed on the BBC’s Sunday Politics program, also confirmed that the UK had not ruled out military intervention – but was still focused on trying to overcome objections from Russia and China to get a strong UN Security Council resolution condemning the Bashar al-Assad government.
“At the moment we don’t have a legal basis for delivering military assistance to the rebels. This is something the Prime Minster keeps asking us to test

Greek parliament passes harsh 2013 austerity budget despite public protests

Press TV: The Greek parliament has approved a 2013 budget that imposes new austerity measures on the nation in an effort to secure a loan from its international creditors (aka the banksters) to "save the debt-ridden country from bankruptcy." (which actually means to save the banksters from the so called "free market" and having to find proper jobs.)

The budget was passed by 167 morons votes to 128 in the 300-member parliament early Monday, AFP reported. (The lunatics have taken over the asylum)
The passage of the bill was a pre-condition for Athens to unlock a 31.5 billion euro (40 billion fictitious fiat dollars created out of thin air, like your personal mortgage or loan) tranche of bailout funds from its three international creditors -- the European Union, the International Monetary Fund, and the European Central Bank.
The bailout is crucial to "the Greek economy", as without it Greece risks default on November 16, when the government must repay a three-month treasury bill worth five billion euros (6.3 billion dollars).

Ahead of the vote, around 15,000 anti-austerity protesters filled the streets leading to the parliament building in Athens to voice their anger at the fresh cuts in public spending and wages.

The people’s bailout: OWS seeks to ‘liberate debtors’

RT: Straight from the pages of Fight Club, a group of Occupy Wall Street-linked activists plans to whip the debt slate clean. Rather than go down the path of Project Mayhem, they have another plan: buy debt for pennies on the dollar and “abolish it.”
“Banks got bailed out, we got sold out” has long been a rallying cry of the Occupy Wall Street movement following the $700-billion Emergency Economic Stabilization Act of 2008 that kept financial firms afloat after their bad bets went south.
A coalition of OWS groups under the banner of “Strike Debt” has organized the Rolling Jubilee with one goal in mind: create an economy “where our debts are to our friends, families, and communities — and not to the 1%.”
To do this, to group hopes to buy up delinquent debt, like medical and student loans, in order to forgive it.
The activists announced via their official site that they are unable to buy specific individuals' debt, and will instead “help liberate debtors through a campaign of mutual support, good will and collective refusal.”
David Rees, one of their organizers behind the project, announced a test run whereby $500 dollars allowed them to buy $14,000 in distressed debt. We then erased that debt,” he continued.