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 veryhotthread  Author  Topic: The Obama Deception  (Read 5238 times)
OrangeCandle
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xx Re: The Obama Deception
« Reply #15 on: May 7th, 2009, 03:45am »

Am I dreaming or is this for real?

Jay Rockefeller, who declared last month that we would all be better off if the internet was never invented, is spouting his mouth off that the internet needs to be controlled for "security purposes".

And not only that, but two bills have already been created to do just that.

Indeed, there are political forces are behind Senate bills No. 773 and 778.

Rockefeller meant the government would be better off if the internet was never invented. If the internet was never invented, the corporate media would dominate news and information and alternative media restricted to print would have a far more difficult time counter balancing government propaganda. Government and the elite behind it are sincerely worried about the fact increasing numbers of people get their news from alternative media sources on the internet and corporate media newspapers are falling like dominoes.

Rockefeller’s bills introduced in the Senate — known as the Cybersecurity Act of 2009 — would create yet another government bureaucracy, the Office of the National Cybersecurity Advisor. It would report directly to Obama. Rockefeller’s legislation would grant “the Secretary of Commerce access to all privately owned information networks deemed to be critical to the nation’s infrastructure “without regard to any provision of law, regulation, rule or policy restricting such access”.

In other words, Obama would have a Cyber Czar in the Commerce Department and the power to shut down the internet.

Here is a video of Jay Rockefeller peddling this BS:

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Ct9xzXUQLuY&eurl=http%3A%2F%2Fwww.infowars.com%2Fcybersecurity-bill-gives-obama-dictatorial-power-over-internet%2F&feature=player_embedded
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xx Re: The Obama Deception
« Reply #16 on: May 7th, 2009, 03:46am »

The cybersecurity fraud now in motion will grant the Department of Commerce oversight of “critical” networks, such as banking records, would grant the government access to potentially incriminating information obtained without cause or warrant, a violation of the Constitution’s prohibition against unlawful search and seizure.

Obama’s internet agenda is an extension of his effort to impose government control over the private sector. It should be obvious what is going on here. Not if but when the next false flag attack occurs here in America, the elite will turn off the internet in order to control the flow of information. They will tell us they were forced to do this in order to deny terrorists in caves or driving around with Ron Paul bumper stickers on their cars the ability to sabotage the power grid and banks.

Senate bills No. 773 and 778 are about controlling information. The bills have nothing to do with mischievous kids with laptops in Latvia.
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xx Re: The Obama Deception
« Reply #17 on: May 7th, 2009, 03:47am »

No End in Sight


Mike Whitney
April 11, 2009



It’s been 21 months since two Bear Stearns hedge funds defaulted setting off a series of events which have led to the gravest economic crisis since the Great Depression. No one expected the financial meltdown to hit this hard or spread this fast. The failure at Bear triggered a freeze in the secondary market where mortgage loans are repackaged into securities and sold to investors. That market is now completely paralyzed cutting off 40 percent of funding for consumer and business loans and thrusting the broader economy into a deep recession. Banks and financial institutions have been forced to curtail their off-balance sheet operations and build their reserves which have ballooned from $45 billion to nearly $700 billion in the last 6 months alone. Like millions of homeowners who have seen their home equity vanish and their retirement savings slashed in half, the banks are hunkering down hoping they can outlast the deflationary hurricane ahead.

The deteriorating economic conditions have taken their toll on consumer confidence and forced businesses to lay off employees that won’t be needed during the slowdown. The system is bursting with overcapacity. Demand is falling faster than any time since the 1930s. Inventories will have to be trimmed and budgets cut to muddle through the down-times. Foreign trade has slowed to a crawl, auto sales are down by 40 percent or more, and unemployment is rising at 650,000 per month. Policymakers have pushed through a $800 billion stimulus plan, but it won’t be nearly enough to stop the steady rise in unemployment or take up the slack in an economy where industrial output has been cut in half, new home construction has dropped to record lows, and manufacturing has fallen off a cliff. Economists warn that when governments don’t step in and provide stimulus to increase aggregate demand, consumers cut back sharply on spending and push the economy deeper into depression.

Treasury Secretary Geithner and Fed chief Bernanke have lent or committed $13 trillion, but they’ve only managed to plug a few holes. The financial system is hobbled and unable to provide sufficient credit to generate growth. Every sector has suffered cutbacks, layoffs and slimmer profits. The problems go beyond toxic assets or complex derivatives. The system is plagued with stagnation, overcapacity and redundancy. Economics professor Robert Brenner sums it up like this in an interview in the Asia Pacific Journal:

Robert Brenner: "The current crisis is more serious than the worst previous recession of the postwar period, between 1979 and 1982, and could conceivably come to rival the Great Depression, though there is no way of really knowing. Economic forecasters have underestimated how bad it is because they have over-estimated the strength of the real economy and failed to take into account the extent of its dependence upon a buildup of debt that relied on asset price bubbles. In the U.S., during the recent business cycle of the years 2001-2007, GDP growth was by far the slowest of the postwar epoch. There was no increase in private sector employment. The increase in plants and equipment was about a third of the previous, a postwar low. Real wages were basically flat. There was no increase in median family income for the first time since World War II. Economic growth was driven entirely by personal consumption and residential investment, made possible by easy credit and rising house prices. Economic performance was weak, even despite the enormous stimulus from the housing bubble and the Bush administration’s huge federal deficits. Housing by itself accounted for almost one-third of the growth of GDP and close to half of the increase in employment in the years 2001-2005. It was, therefore, to be expected that when the housing bubble burst, consumption and residential investment would fall, and the economy would plunge. " ("Overproduction not Financial Collapse is the Heart of the Crisis", Robert P. Brenner speaks with Jeong Seong-jin, Asia Pacific Journal)
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xx Re: The Obama Deception
« Reply #18 on: May 7th, 2009, 03:48am »

The economy is now in a downward spiral. Tightening in the credit markets has made it harder for consumers to borrow or businesses to expand. Overextended financial institutions are forced to shed assets at firesale prices to meet margin calls from the banks. Asset deflation is ongoing with no end in sight. Price declines in housing have reached 30 percent already and are now accelerating on the downside. This is the nightmare scenario; a capitulation in real estate that drags the rest of economy into a black hole. Economist Nouriel Roubini and market analyst Meredith Whitney predict that housing prices will drop another 20 percent before they hit bottom. Nearly half of all homeowners will be underwater and owe more on their mortgages than the current value of their homes. That will increase the foreclosures and push scores of banks into default. According to Merrill Lynch’s economist David Rosenberg:

"It would take over three years to achieve price stability (in housing) The problem is that prices do not begin to stabilize until we break below eight months’ supply – and they tend to deflate 3% per quarter until that happens. So as impressive as it is that the builders have taken single-family starts below underlying sales, their efforts are just not sufficient to prevent real estate prices from falling further. In fact, even if the builders were to declare a moratorium immediately, that is, taking starts to zero, demand is so weak and the unsold inventory so intractable that it would now take over three years to achieve the holy grail of price stability in the residential real estate market."

The main economic indicators all point to a long period of retrenchment ahead. The slowdown in global trade has hit Germany, Japan, and most of Asia particularly hard. The export-driven model of growth has suffered a major setback and won’t rebound for some time to come. With the US consumer unable to continue his debt-fueled spending spree, surplus countries will have to develop domestic markets for growth, but it won’t be easy. Chinese workers save 50 percent of what they earn and German workers already have a comfortable life without increasing personal consumption. Higher wages and lower interest rates can help stimulate demand, but cultural influences make it difficult to change spending habits. Meanwhile, the economy will continue to languish operating well below its optimum capacity.

Capital flows have also suddenly reversed causing turmoil in the currency markets. January’s TIC data indicates that net capital outflows for the US were negative $148 billion in January. Capital is now fleeing the country. Financial protectionism has triggered the repatriation of foreign investment causing a sharp drop in the purchase of US sovereign debt. This is from Brad Setser, economist for the CFR:

"The obvious implication of the recent downturn in total reserve holdings — and the $180 billion fall in q4 wasn’t driven by currency moves — is that the pace of growth in the world’s dollar reserves has slowed dramatically…
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xx Re: The Obama Deception
« Reply #19 on: May 7th, 2009, 03:49am »

The obvious implication: most of the 2009 US fiscal deficit WILL NEED TO BE FINANCED DOMESTICALLY. The Fed’s custodial data indicates central banks are still buying Treasuries, though at a somewhat slower pace than in late 2008. But their demand hasn’t kept up with issuance. (Foreign Central banks aren’t going to finance much of the 2009 US fiscal deficit; Their reserves aren’t growing anymore", Brad Setser, Council on Foreign Relations)

The United States does not have the reserves to finance it own massive deficits which will soar to $1.9 trillion by the end of 2009. The Fed will have to increase its purchases of US Treasuries and monetize the debt. Foreign holders of Treasuries and dollar-backed assets ($5 trillion overseas) will be watching carefully as Bernanke revs up the printing presses to fight the recession and meet government obligations. China, Russia, Venezuela and Iran have already called for a change in the world’s reserve currency. It won’t happen overnight, but the momentum is steadily growing.

The S&P 500 has soared 23 percent in the last four weeks, but the current bear market rally is misleading. The prospects for a quick recovery are remote at best. The fundamentals are all weak. Corporate profits are down, GDP is negative 6 percent, housing is in a shambles, and the banking system broken. The Fed has increased the money supply by 22 percent, but economic activity is at a standstill. The velocity at which money is spent is the slowest since 1987. Nothing is moving. The banks are hoarding, credit has dried up, and consumers are saving for the first time in 2 decades. The banks’ credit-conduit cannot function properly until bad assets are removed from their balance sheets. But the magnitude of the losses make it impossible for the government to purchase them outright without bankrupting the country. According to the Times Online, the IMF has increased its estimates of how much toxic mortgage-backed paper the banks are holding:

"Toxic debts racked up by banks and insurers could spiral to $4 trillion, new forecasts from the International Monetary Fund (IMF) are set to suggest.

The IMF said in January that it expected the deterioration in US-originated assets to reach $2.2 trillion by the end of next year, but it is understood to be looking at raising that to $3.1 trillion in its next assessment of the global economy, due to be published on April 21. In addition, it is likely to boost that total by $900 billion for toxic assets originated in Europe and Asia.

Banks and insurers, which so far have owned up to $1.29 trillion in toxic assets, are facing increasing losses as the deepening recession takes a toll, adding to the debts racked up from sub-prime mortgages. The IMF’s new forecast, which could be revised again before the end of the month, will come as a blow to governments that have already pumped billions into the banking system."
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« Reply #20 on: May 7th, 2009, 03:50am »

Since banks lend at a ratio of 10 to 1; the amount of credit cut off to the broader economy will ensure that sluggish growth well into the future. If there is a recovery, it will be weak. The Obama administration will have to increase its capital injections even though they will add to mushrooming deficits. So far, financial institutions have only written down $1 trillion or 25 percent of their losses. This means the banking system is insolvent. Eventually, Obama will have to resolve the bad banks and auction off troubled assets, even though political support is rapidly eroding. According to political analyst F. William Engdahl, most of the garbage assets are concentrated in the nation’s five biggest banks:

"Today five US banks according to data in the just-released Federal Office of Comptroller of the Currency’s Quarterly Report on Bank Trading and Derivatives Activity, hold 96% of all US bank derivatives positions in terms of nominal values, and an eye-popping 81% of the total net credit risk exposure in event of default.

The five are, in declining order of importance: JPMorgan Chase which holds a staggering $88 trillion in derivatives (€66 trillion!). Morgan Chase is followed by Bank of America with $38 trillion in derivatives, and Citibank with $32 trillion. Number four in the derivatives sweepstakes is Goldman Sachs with a ‘mere’ $30 trillion in derivatives. Number five, the merged Wells Fargo-Wachovia Bank, drops dramatically in size to $5 trillion. Number six, Britain’s HSBC Bank USA has $3.7 trillion. ("Geithner’s ‘Dirty Little Secret’: The Entire Global Financial System is at Risk", F. William Engdahl, Global Research)

These five banking Goliaths are at the center of political power in America today. Their White House emissary, Timothy Geithner, has concocted a rescue plan–the Public-Private Investment Program–which will provide 94 percent funding from the FDIC for the purchase bad assets. The program is designed to keep asset prices artificially high while transferring the bulk of the losses to the taxpayer. The plan has been widely criticized and has even raised a few eyebrows even among usually-supportive members of the establishment like the Financial Times:

"US banks that have received government aid, including Citigroup, Goldman Sachs, Morgan Stanley and JP Morgan Chase, are considering buying toxic assets to be sold by rivals under the Treasury’s $1,000bn (£680bn) plan to revive the financial system.

The plans proved controversial, with critics charging that the government’s public-private partnership - which provide generous loans to investors - are intended to help banks sell, rather than acquire, troubled securities and loans.

Banks have three options if they want to buy toxic assets: apply to become one of four or five fund managers that will purchase troubled securities; bid for packages of bad loans; or buy into funds set up by others. The government plan does not allow banks to buy their own assets, but there is no ban on the purchase of securities and loans sold by others." (The Financial Times)

It’s a multi-billion dollar shell game with myriad opportunities for fraud. In theory, the banks could create their own off-balance sheet operations (SIVs or SPEs) and use them to purchase their own bad assets taking advantage of the government’s 94 percent low interest non recourse loans. It’s a blatant swindle and another windfall for Wall Street.
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xx Re: The Obama Deception
« Reply #21 on: May 7th, 2009, 03:51am »

Geithner’s plan does not fix the problems with the banks, it only delays the final outcome. The next leg-down in the recession will push many of the undercapitalized banks into receivership. Geithner’s PPIP won’t change that. As housing prices fall and foreclosures rise, the capital position of many of the banks will become untenable leading to a rash of bank failures. An article in Monday’s Wall Street Journal puts adds some historical perspective to today’s financial crisis:

"The events of the past 10 years have an eerie similarity to the period leading up to the Great Depression. Total mortgage debt outstanding increased from $9.35 billion in 1920 to $29.44 billion in 1929. In 1920, residential mortgage debt was 10.2% of household wealth; by 1929, it was 27.2% of household wealth….

The causes of the Great Depression need more study, but the claims that losses on stock-market speculation and a monetary contraction caused the decline of the banking system both seem inadequate. It appears that both the Great Depression and the current crisis had their origins in excessive consumer debt — especially mortgage debt — that was transmitted into the financial sector during a sharp downturn.

Why does one crash cause minimal damage to the financial system, so that the economy can pick itself up quickly, while another crash leaves a devastated financial sector in the wreckage? The hypothesis we propose is that a financial crisis that originates in consumer debt, especially consumer debt concentrated at the low end of the wealth and income distribution, can be transmitted quickly and forcefully into the financial system. It appears that we’re witnessing the second great consumer debt crash, the end of a massive consumption binge." (From Bubble to Depression? Steven Gjerstad and Vernon L. Smith, Wall Street Journal)

PARTY LIKE ITS 1929

Two leading economic historians, Barry Eichengreen and Kevin H. Rourke, have written an article "A Tale of Two Depressions" which has been widely circulated on the Internet. It illustrates (with graphs) how the global economy is plummeting faster now than during the 1930s.

The world economy is tracking or doing worse than during the Great Depression | vox - Research-based policy analysis and commentary from leading economists

By nearly every objective standard, the present downturn is worse than the Great Depression. Manufacturing, industrial production, foreign trade, capital flows, consumer confidence, housing, and even stocks are falling faster today than after the crash of 1929. So far, there hasn't been a wholesale collapse of the financial system, but that could change. The economy continues its downhill slide and it looks like there’s nothing to stop it from falling further still.

http://www.infowars.com/no-end-in-sight/
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xx Re: The Obama Deception
« Reply #22 on: May 7th, 2009, 03:52am »

Obama and his administration are not telling us the cold hard facts, and they are making the problem much much worse for our country by throwing more and more of our tax dollars at it with no major beneficial results in return. Basicly in the long run they are only adding fuel to the blaze, and it seems at least to me that they are doing it deliberately. They had to have known that their methods and efforts were only going to end up increasing the problem for all of us over time. And yet, even now they seem to be doing nothing to stop themselves from continuing their behavior. This is a mark of betrayel in my opinion. The betrayel of us as individual tax payers, and the betrayel of our nation as a whole. We mine as well just stamp the word "sucker" on all of our foreheads folks, because right now we're being played as fools.
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xx Re: The Obama Deception
« Reply #23 on: May 7th, 2009, 03:54am »

Housing Bubble Smackdown: Bigger Crash Ahead

Mike Whitney
Global Research
April 21, 2009


Due to the lifting of the foreclosure moratorium at the end of March, the downward slide in housing is gaining speed. The moratorium was initiated in January to give Obama’s anti-foreclosure program—which is a combination of mortgage modifications and refinancing—a chance to succeed. The goal of the plan was to keep up to 9 million struggling homeowners in their homes, but it’s clear now that the program will fall well-short of its objective.

Another 20 percent carved off the aggregate value of US housing means another $4 trillion loss to homeowners.

In March, housing prices accelerated on the downside indicating bigger adjustments dead-ahead. Trend-lines are steeper now than ever before–nearly perpendicular. Housing prices are not falling, they’re crashing and crashing hard. Now that the foreclosure moratorium has ended, Notices of Default (NOD) have spiked to an all-time high. These Notices will turn into foreclosures in 4 to 5 months time creating another cascade of foreclosures. Market analysts predict there will be 5 MILLION MORE FORECLOSURES BETWEEN NOW AND 2011. It’s a disaster bigger than Katrina. Soaring unemployment and rising foreclosures ensure that hundreds of banks and financial institutions will be forced into bankruptcy. 40 percent of delinquent homeowners have already vacated their homes. There’s nothing Obama can do to make them stay. Worse still, only 30 percent of foreclosures have been relisted for sale suggesting more hanky-panky at the banks. Where have the houses gone? Have they simply vanished?

600,000 "DISAPPEARED HOMES?"

Here’s a excerpt from the SF Gate explaining the mystery:

"Lenders nationwide are sitting on hundreds of thousands of foreclosed homes that they have not resold or listed for sale, according to numerous data sources. And foreclosures, which banks unload at fire-sale prices, are a major factor driving home values down.

"We believe there are in the neighborhood of 600,000 properties nationwide that banks have repossessed but not put on the market," said Rick Sharga, vice president of RealtyTrac, which compiles nationwide statistics on foreclosures. "California probably represents 80,000 of those homes. It could be disastrous if the banks suddenly flooded the market with those distressed properties. You’d have further depreciation and carnage."

In a recent study, RealtyTrac compared its database of bank-repossessed homes to MLS listings of for-sale homes in four states, including California. It found a significant disparity - only 30 percent of the foreclosures were listed for sale in the Multiple Listing Service. The remainder is known in the industry as "shadow inventory." ("Banks aren’t Selling Many Foreclosed Homes" SF Gate)

If regulators were deployed to the banks that are keeping foreclosed homes off the market, they would probably find that the banks are actually servicing the mortgages on a monthly basis to conceal the extent of their losses. They’d also find that the banks are trying to keep housing prices artificially high to avoid heftier losses that would put them out of business. One thing is certain, 600,000 "disappeared" homes means that housing prices have a lot farther to fall and that an even larger segment of the banking system is underwater.

Here is more on the story from Mr. Mortgage "California Foreclosures About to Soar…Again"

"Are you ready to see the future? Ten’s of thousands of foreclosures are only 1-5 months away from hitting that will take total foreclosure counts back to all-time highs. This will flood an already beaten-bloody real estate market with even more supply just in time for the Spring/Summer home selling season…Foreclosure start (NOD) and Trustee Sale (NTS) notices are going out at levels not seen since mid 2008. Once an NTS goes out, the property is taken to the courthouse and auctioned within 21-45 days….The bottom line is that there is a massive wave of actual foreclosures that will hit beginning in April that can’t be stopped without a national moratorium."

JP Morgan Chase, Wells Fargo and Fannie Mae have all stepped up their foreclosure activity in recent weeks. Delinquencies have skyrocketed foreshadowing more price-slashing into the foreseeable future. According to the Wall Street Journal:

"Ronald Temple, co-director of research at Lazard Asset Management, expects home prices to fall 22% to 27% from their January levels. More than 2.1 million homes will be lost this year because borrowers can’t meet their loan payments, up from about 1.7 million in 2008." (Ruth Simon, "The housing crisis is about to take center stage once again" Wall Street Journal)

Another 20 percent carved off the aggregate value of US housing means another $4 trillion loss to homeowners. That means smaller retirement savings, less discretionary spending, and lower living standards. The next leg down in housing will be excruciating; every sector will feel the pain. Obama’s $75 billion mortgage rescue plan is a mere pittance; it won’t reduce the principle on mortgages and it won’t stop the bleeding. Policymakers have decided they’ve done enough and are refusing to help. They don’t see the tsunami looming in front of them plain as day. The housing market is going under and it’s going to drag a good part of the broader economy along with it. Stocks, too.

http://www.infowars.com/housing-bubble-smackdown-bigger-crash-ahead/
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xx Re: The Obama Deception
« Reply #24 on: May 7th, 2009, 03:55am »

Change you have been told to believe in: A closer examination of Barack Obama’s foreign policy

Freedom of Information
April 17, 2009


“What you want in a media system is ostensible diversity that conceals actual uniformity”

- Joseph Goebbels

The election of Barack Obama has been rightly heralded across the world as a defining moment in the history of the United States. The election of the nation’s first black president is symbolic of the progress made in terms of attitudes towards racial harmony and acceptance in a country where less than fifty years previously basic rights and entitlements were routinely denied to non-white people, and a dehumanising structure incorporating segregation and separation kept people permanently excluded from any sort of meaningful political representation according to their ethnicity.

Obama’s victory has cued an outpouring of elation and hope both among the American people and abroad, which says much for the disastrous two-term presidency that preceded his victory. For many Americans and those of the younger generations in particular, the election of the Democratic candidate represents a rejection of eight years of George W. Bush’s neoconservative rule. The Bush administration was characterised by callous militarism, total disregard for international consensus on matters such as war and torture and policies that have progressively eroded civil and constitutional rights within the United States.

Bush left office with plummeting approval ratings, his hugely unpopular policies having engendered overwhelming anti-American sentiment internationally and created a climate of fear and intimidation in the United States that has undermined the preservation of freedom of speech and justice. The wars started by Bush’s administration have taken an enormous toll; an ORB survey estimates that more than a million Iraqis had died by August 2007 following the 2003 invasion of that country, in addition to the millions of displaced, and American military casualties since Bush took office now number more than 5,000, with over 100,000 soldiers estimated wounded.

Public opinion demanded an end to the wars of aggression, the torture and warrantless wiretapping. The American people cried out for an end to the no-bid contracts for Halliburton and a halt to the intimate relationship with the highest echelons of elected power enjoyed by big business. People had had enough of a government which seemed to revel in trampling on the country’s core values, and under whose rule those suspected of being enemies of the state are now guilty until proven innocent. It was in this context that Barack Obama was elected; indeed his campaign could be succinctly represented by one word: “Change”.

Those who elected Obama on anti-war grounds, however, had not read the small print. Indeed, Obama’s status as a champion of pacifism can be attributed in no small part to the stance taken by his Republican opponent during the campaign; compared to John McCain’s overt belligerence, Obama became the candidate of peace by default. Whereas McCain hypothesised that American military involvement in Iraq could continue for “a hundred years”, Obama affirmed in September 2007 that, “[t]here is no military solution in Iraq and there never was. The best way to protect our security and to pressure Iraq’s leaders to resolve their civil war is to immediately begin to remove our combat troops. Not in six months or one year - now.”

In July 2008, Obama said that a previous commitment and campaign pledge to complete a full withdrawal of combat troops within 16 months could be “refined” at a later date, and following his inauguration he indeed extended the timetable for the prospective pullout to between 19 and 23 months. Obama’s current position is that a “residual force” of up to 50,000 troops will be left in the country after this 23-month period has elapsed – giving rise to consternation from anti-war activists and from some within the Democratic Party. There are currently 142,000 U.S. troops in Iraq, and therefore the proposed 50,000-strong residual force represents more than one third of the American forces currently serving in the country. Under an agreement signed between George W. Bush and the Iraqi government in 2008, all U.S. troops must be out of Iraq by December 31st 2011.

Aside from the somewhat confused stance with regards to the Iraq pullout, President Obama has been criticised by opponents of the ‘war on terror’ for pledging to almost double the number of U.S. troops serving in Afghanistan. His proposal to supplement the existing force of 36,000 with an additional 30,000 troops – presumably consisting in no small part of soldiers who have already served in Iraq – contradicts statements made in July 2008, in which Obama had suggested increasing the U.S. presence in Afghanistan by just 7,000. Since taking office, Obama has already dispatched an additional 17,000 U.S. troops to the country.

The newly elected President wasted no time whatsoever in continuing another policy inherited from his predecessor; attacks by unmanned drones inside Pakistani territory. In September 2008, Obama called the first attacks carried out by the government of George W. Bush inside Pakistan a “small step in the right direction.” Susan Rice, top foreign policy advisor to Obama’s campaign, said of the raids – undertaken without approval from Islamabad - that the U.S. had a right “Not to invade. Not to take over Pakistan’s sovereignty, but to take out that target as an act of self-defence”. Obama stated publicly as far back as July 2007 that he had no qualms whatsoever about using military force against “al-Qaeda” in Pakistan, even without consultation with the Pakistani government, provoking outrage in a country that has been a key strategic ally of the United States during the ‘war on terror’. Following his inauguration, Obama did not dawdle in making good on those threats.

The new President carried out the first such strike just three days into his term in office on January 23 2009, killing 22 people inside Pakistani territory and provoking huge protests in the tribal heartlands of North & South Waziristan. The total number of unauthorised U.S. raids inside Pakistani territory since August 2008 now stands at more than 30. Pakistani officials were quick to condemn these attacks as violations of their national sovereignty, pointing out that many civilians have been killed by missiles fired from unmanned drones since the raids began last summer, and emphasising that in terms of winning hearts and minds in the region such aggressions are counter productive to say the least.

Another potential sphere of conflict following Obama’s electoral success is Iran. In a statement made before the American Israeli Public Affairs Committee (AIPAC) – widely considered to be the most powerful lobby group representing the interests of any foreign nation in Washington - in March 2007, Obama called Iran “a threat to all of us” and received a standing ovation from the crowd in attendance as he said global leaders must do “whatever it takes” to stop Iran from enriching uranium – refusing to rule out a recourse to force, and called Iranian President Mahmoud Ahmedinejad “reckless, irresponsible and inattentive”.

In an address to the Iranian people given in March 2009, Obama appeared to change tack somewhat, declaring, “The United States wants the Islamic Republic of Iran to take its rightful place in the community of nations. You have that right - but it comes with real responsibilities.” This apparent reference to Iran’s nuclear programme, which the Persian state claims is purely for civilian and not military purposes, reiterates the line taken by the Bush administration. Earlier in the month Barack Obama had extended U.S. sanctions against Iran that began under Bill Clinton in 1995 and had been continued throughout the presidency of George W. Bush, claiming that Iran poses a threat to U.S. “national security”. The sanctions would have expired automatically had Obama not extended them for another 12 months. In an address to the U.S. congress, the new President stated, “The actions and policies of the government of Iran are contrary to the interests of the United States in the region and pose a continuing and unusual and extraordinary threat”. Obama’s refusal to rule out using force against Iran and his decision to extend American sanctions has not gone unnoticed in Tehran. “Unlimited sanctions which still continue and have been renewed by the United States are wrong and need to be reviewed”, said President Ahmadinejad in response to Obama’s message to the Iranian people. “By fundamentally changing its behaviour America can offer us a friendly hand,” he added. A fundamental change in behaviour does not look on the cards however, and Defense Secretary Robert Gates confirmed as much when he stated, “the opportunity for success in is probably more in economic sanctions [in Iran & North Korea] than it is in diplomacy”

One area of U.S. foreign policy that the newly elected President is coming under increasing pressure to act on is the United States’ controversial relationship with Israel, particularly in the wake of evidence that the Israeli military committed war crimes during the 23-day Gaza war. Barack Obama maintained a deafening silence throughout the Israeli onslaught, which was carried out in the period between his election and his inauguration, even though the then President-elect was vocal in his condemnation of the attacks in Mumbai, and gave numerous statements regarding the global financial crisis during the same period.
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xx Re: The Obama Deception
« Reply #25 on: May 7th, 2009, 03:57am »

In his aforementioned address to AIPAC in March 2007, Barack Obama stated, “We must preserve our total commitment to our unique defense relationship with Israel by fully funding military assistance and continuing work on the Arrow and related missile defense programs”. The then senator’s performance at the forum received a rave review from the Washington correspondent of Israeli newspaper Ha’aretz, who remarked that Obama “sounded as strong as Clinton, as supportive as Bush, as friendly as Giuliani. At least rhetorically, Obama passed any test anyone might have wanted him to pass. So he is pro-Israel. Period.”

Israel has been the largest recipient of foreign aid from the United States since the Second World War, receiving approximately $3 billion per year in grants since 1985. In August 2007 under the government of George W. Bush, the U.S. signed an agreement pledging Israel $30 billion in armaments over the next decade. 26.3% of the money may be spent on arms produced by Israeli manufacturers, with the rest being earmarked for the purchase of weapons and military equipment from U.S. arms producers. Nicholas Burns, the U.S. Undersecretary of State who signed the deal during Bush’s presidency called it an “investment in peace”, saying that, “peace cannot be made without strength”.

Some of the appointments the new President has made since taking office have also done little to assuage those who fear there is little difference between his policies and those of his predecessor. Obama decided to retain Robert Gates as Defense Secretary, who picks up where he left off in the same position to which George W. Bush appointed him. Obama has appointed Rahm Emanuel, a former investment banker and one-time volunteer in the Israeli army, as his Chief of Staff. Emanuel is a particularly polemic figure in the context of the economic downturn because of his strong ties to Wall Street – he has been one of Congress’ top recipients of Wall Street contributions since his congressional election in 2002. Indeed, Rahm Emanuel was the top House recipient in the 2008 election cycle of contributions from hedge funds, private equity firms and the securities/investment industry – putting him at odds with Obama’s frequent criticism of Wall Street’s financial institutions, although Obama himself also took large contributions from the securities and investment industries.

Despite Obama’s affirmation that none of his appointees would be placed in positions that, “directly and substantially related to their prior employer, for two years”, the new President has selected William J. Lynn III as deputy Defense Secretary. This has provoked outrage among peace campaigners and anti-war activists, as Lynn served as head of government relations for arms manufacturer Raytheon, where he was also a top executive, prior to his selection by Obama, prompting accusations of a conflict of interest. In November 2007, Obama announced that,

“I am in this race to tell the corporate lobbyists that their days of setting the agenda in Washington are over. I have done more than any other candidate in this race to take on lobbyists and won. They have not funded my campaign, they will not run my White House, and they will not drown out the voices of the American people when I am president.”

However just weeks into his administration that is already starting to look like dated campaign rhetoric. Other notable lobbyists appointed to high-level positions by Obama include former lobbyist for investment banking giant Goldman Sachs Mark Patterson who has been selected as Chief of Staff at the Treasury, Attorney General Eric Holder who formerly lobbied for the now bankrupt telecommunications firm Global Crossing Ltd. and Mona Sutphen, who lobbied for a number of corporate clients including Angliss International, who has been selected as deputy White House Chief of Staff.

Finally, one of the first high-profile ‘changes’ Obama made after taking office was to sign an order that many media outlets reported would close the United States’ detention camp in Guantanamo Bay, Cuba within a year and return America to “the moral high ground” in the ‘war on terror’. Such reports were premature however, and skated over the fact that Obama has signed executive orders since taking office that preserve and protect the controversial practice of rendition; secret abduction and transfer of prisoners and ‘terror suspects’ to “countries that cooperate with the United States”. Current and former U.S. intelligence officials even stated that there might be an “expansion” of the practice of rendition given that other avenues for ‘interrogation’, such as the transfer of suspects to Guantanamo Bay, have been closed by the government. Obama administration officials confirmed that the orders to shut the CIA’s network of secret prisons “do not refer to facilities used only to hold people on a short-term, transitory basis”, according to the LA Times. Suspects who have been held in secret prisons have given harrowing accounts in recent years of brutal torture experienced at these ‘black world’ camps in countries such as Algeria and Poland, and under executive orders signed by Obama such treatment of detainees will be allowed to continue.

It is frequently stated that Obama and his administration must be given time before judgement can be passed; that perhaps Obama is holding back his more radical policies until he is able to gain a stronger grounding that will enable him to better implement real change. However, in the face of the available information, this looks like wishful thinking. Barack Obama has unquestionably softened the rhetoric used in comparison with his predecessor, who seemed unmoved by his overwhelming unpopularity and by consistent opposition to his unethical policy decisions. Obama is a much more palatable figure than the likes of George W. Bush and thingy Cheney; he is more charismatic, more charming and clearly more intelligent than the man he has replaced as president, and this has evidently endeared him to many in the U.S. and around the world. The underlying problem is that, as notorious neoconservative commentator Ann Coulter observed whilst commenting on Obama’s handling of issues of ‘national security’, “we ought to be gloating because he seems to be continuing the policies of George Bush”.

Smooth rhetoric aside, as of yet there is precious little that distinguishes President Obama from his Republican forerunner in terms of foreign policy and the rolling out of a draconian police state within the United States. It is looking increasingly unlikely with each passing day that those who were wooed by the most expensive presidential campaign in U.S. history and swept Barack Obama into the White House on an unprecedented wave of popular fervour will stand up and hold the new President to account for the flagrant violations of his campaign’s principles that are already piling up within the first hundred days of his term in office.

http://www.infowars.com/change-you-have-been-told-to-believe-in-a-closer-examination-of-barack-obama%E2%80%99s-foreign-policy/
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xx Re: The Obama Deception
« Reply #26 on: May 7th, 2009, 04:01am »

What the World needs now more possibly than at any other time in history, is for good people to stand up and do something. As Edmund Berke once said, "All that is necessary for the triumph of evil is that good men do nothing."

Think about that statement for a second. In order for Evil to triumph, Good people have to do nothing. The two go hand in hand. What the World, and all of the nations around the World need most right now, is REAL hope and REAL change. Not manufactured hope and change. Not hope and change promised to us from corrupt politicians. But the kind of hope and change that comes from inside of each and every single good hearted good natured person in the World.

When bad men combine, the good must associate; else they will fall one by one, an unpitied sacrifice in a contemptible struggle. Edmund Burke

The bottom line is, and we all know it's true, is that we have given too much power over to our governments and our politicians. And unfortunately these governments and politicians have become intoxicated by that power. And if we want things to change, we have to dissolve some of that power.

Those who have been once intoxicated with power, and have derived any kind of emolument from it, even though but for one year, never can willingly abandon it. They may be distressed in the midst of all their power; but they will never look to any thing but power for their relief. Edmund Burke

All who have ever written on government are unanimous, that among a people generally corrupt, liberty cannot long exist.

The true danger is when liberty is nibbled away, for expedients, and by parts. Edmund Burke

People crushed by law, have no hopes but from power. If laws are their enemies, they will be enemies to laws; and those who have much to hope and nothing to lose, will always be dangerous. Edmund Burke

A man full of warm, speculative benevolence may wish his society otherwise constituted than he finds it, but a good patriot and a true politician always considers how he shall make the most of the existing materials of his country. A disposition to preserve and an ability to improve, taken together, would be my standard of a statesman. Everything else is vulgar in the conception, perilous in the execution. Edmund Burke
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xx Re: The Obama Deception
« Reply #27 on: May 7th, 2009, 04:02am »

U.S. Initial Jobless Claims Rose to 640,000 Last Week

Bob Willis
Bloomberg
April 23, 2009


The number of Americans filing first-time applications for unemployment insurance rose last week to 640,000 as forecast, while total benefit rolls reached a record, indicating the labor market continues to deteriorate.

Initial jobless claims increased by 27,000 in the week that ended April 18, from a revised 613,000 the prior week, the Labor Department said today in Washington. The number of people staying on jobless-benefit rolls rose by 93,000 to 6.14 million, the 12th straight week the figure has set a record.

Job losses may continue all year even as the longest recession in the postwar era shows signs of reaching a trough. The release indicates employment cuts may come close to topping 650,000 for a record fifth straight month in April because today’s report covers the week of the monthly payroll survey.

http://www.infowars.com/us-initial-jobless-claims-rose-to-640000-last-week/
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xx Re: The Obama Deception
« Reply #28 on: May 7th, 2009, 04:04am »

CFR Corporate Members Get Lion's Share of Bailout Funds


Written by Thomas R. Eddlem



Newspapers are fixated upon $160 million in bonuses given to American International Group (AIG) executives. And it’s nice to know where the millions are going (note: the bonuses could have been cancelled had the federal government let the company go bankrupt, as officials should have). But where are the trillions in TARP, TALC and Federal Reserve Bank bailout funds going?

The man in charge of administering the bailouts is Treasury Secretary Timothy Geithner, who served as a staff member of the New York City-based Council on Foreign Relations before being hired in 2003 to head the New York City branch of the Federal Reserve Bank (Fed). As the vice chairman of the Fed’s Open Market Committee, Geithner is probably a poor choice to get the nation out of it’s current economic mess. He served as Alan Greenspan’s number two man at the Fed, so Geithner is as responsible as anyone for facilitating the severity of the real estate and financial bubble and its subsequent collapse. After all, the Fed was the driving force behind the asset bubble, inflating the bubble larger and larger through artificially low interest rates and an inflationary easy-money policy.

Under Geithner and his predecessor (former Goldman Sachs CEO Henry “Hank” Paulson), the majority of bailout funds have been awarded to high-level donors to Geithner's former employer: the Council on Foreign Relations (CFR).

Here’s a survey of TARP bailout awards to the CFR’s corporate members (there are a total of only a little more than 200 corporate members at all levels):

Among the “Founders,” those who give $100,000 or more to the CFR, can be found:

* American Express Company: $3.389 billion TARP
* Goldman Sachs: $10 billion TARP, plus a separate Federal Reserve bailout and more than $13 billion of the allotment to AIG (below)
* Merrill Lynch: $45 billion through its corporate parent, Bank of America, which is also a CFR Premium corporate member, plus $6.8 billion of AIG’s bailout funds

“President’s Circle” CFR members ($60,000 or more) received the following bailout funds:

* American International Group (AIG): $182 billion in total TARP/TALF funds to date
* Citibank: $50 billion TARP
* Morgan Stanley: $10 billion TARP

Premium members ($30,000 or more to CFR):

* Bank of New York/Mellon Corporation: $3 billion TARP
* Freddie Mac: Sharing with Fannie Mae $1.25 trillion — that’s $1,250 billion — in mortgage securities being purchased from the Federal Reserve Bank
* Chrysler: $4 billion TARP, plus $1.5 billion TARP for Chrysler Financial
* JP Morgan Chase: $25 billion TARP
* CIT Group: $2.33 billion TARP

That’s a total of more than $1 trillion in bailout funds for CFR corporate members, easily the lion’s share of the total bailout funds awarded to date. CFR Membership seems to have its benefits, and then some.

So why is no one asking questions about why most of the funds are going to the former employers of our Treasury secretaries? Perhaps because many of the entities who should ask "why" are also CFR corporate members. Among the financial press, the CFR counts among its members Bloomberg, General Electric (NBC, CNBC, MSNBC), News Corporation (Fox, Fox Business), Standard and Poor's, ABC News, Time Warner (CNN, Time magazine, etc.), Moody's, and McGraw Hill (book publishers).

Somebody should ask the question why the same people who brought us this financial crisis are now bringing us the "cure," and why that cure necessarily involves financing former employers of the people making the decisions.

http://www.thenewamerican.com/economy/commentary-mainmenu-43/915
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xx Re: The Obama Deception
« Reply #29 on: May 7th, 2009, 04:05am »

Bank Lending Keeps Dropping


Oxdown Gazette
April 22, 2009



This Wall Street Journal article confirms a milestone of what Krugman, Galbraith, Stiglitz, Prins and many others have been predicting. The TWELVE TRILLION that is being floated to insolvent US banks is essentially being looted in the paper economy. As Hugh has pointed out so often, it is not getting into the real economy and it will not be there when the paltry $787 billion in stimulus runs out in 2010.

For Wall Street Journal subscribers, the article contains a very helpful spread sheet sortable by TARP recipient.

"Bank Lending Keeps Dropping: Analysis of Treasury Data Paints Starker Picture Than Official Government Snapshots"

Lending at the biggest U.S. banks has fallen more sharply than realized, despite government efforts to pump billions of dollars into the financial sector.

According to a Wall Street Journal analysis of Treasury Department data, the biggest recipients of taxpayer aid made or refinanced 23% less in new loans in February, the latest available data, than in October, the month the Treasury kicked off the Troubled Asset Relief Program.

The total dollar amount of new loans declined in three of the four months the government has reported this data. All but three of the 19 largest TARP recipients with comparable data originated fewer loans in February than they did at the time they received federal infusions.

On a related matter, the Milwaukee Journal Sentinel has done a nice piece on Elizabeth Warren’s visit to Milwaukee on April 29.

"Is rescue of banks stabilizing economy? Panel seeks local input on U.S. fiscal efforts"

[...]The panel often criticizes TARP’s lack of transparency. Its chair, Harvard University law professor Elizabeth Warren, complains that the Treasury often blocks requests for information. "It is difficult for Congress and the American public to have confidence in an initiative for which so much money is at stake and so little key information is available," Warren told a congressional committee this month.

The stop in Milwaukee, scheduled at the UWM Student Union and open to the public, will be the panel’s third hearing outside the capital. It previously held public hearings near Las Vegas and Baltimore. Both of those, however, focused on home foreclosure issues.[...]

In my opinion it is critical that Ms. Warren receive a very strong showing of support. Lacking subpoena power, public support is the only leverage she and her panel have.

http://oxdown.firedoglake.com/diary/4863
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