Saturday, March 5, 2016

German media twists words in Assad interview

Signs of the Times
German ARD broadcaster held an interview with Syrian President Bashar Assad and then twisted his words, Deutsch Turkische Nachrichten reported. The fact that one of Germany's major TV channel's broadcasted an interview with Assad is good, but, sadly, it was depreciated by the wrong interpretation of his words. In the interview, Assad commented on the current developments in Syria. The president made clear that a multitude of militants and rebels armed by foreign sponsors are active in the country. According to the article, journalist Thomas Aders asked Assad whether Syria is still a sovereign state or its policy is "dictated by Tehran or the Kremlin." Here is what Assad answered: "Before the crisis, Israel occupied our territory, and our sovereignty was not full until we reclaimed it. Now, with the crisis underway, our country is flooded with various terrorists and American and allies' aircraft are violating our airspace. Our sovereignty is not full again. At the same time, Syria is still a sovereign country, maybe not a fully sovereign one, with a constitution, state institutions and care of its people. There are elements of foreign power in Syria, and this is the main problem."


Friday, March 4, 2016

Another Phony Jobs Report

Another Phony Jobs Report And if true it is damning The monthly payroll jobs reports have become a bad joke. No growth in real retail sales, but 55,000 retail trade new jobs in February. No growth in real consumer income, but 40,000 more waitresses and bartenders. 86,000 new jobs in Education, health services, and social…

The post Another Phony Jobs Report appeared first on


Thursday, March 3, 2016

Top Heart Surgeon Reveals The Real Cause Of Heart Disease

Your News Wire
A top U.S. heart surgeon has revealed that the real cause of heart disease is not what doctors have been telling you. Dr. Dwight Lundell is a former Chief of Staff and Chief of Surgery at Banner Heart Hospital in Arizona. After performing 5,000 open-heart surgeries through the course of his 25-year career he discovered that the conventional treatments offered to patients were both ineffective and potentially dangerous: We physicians with all our training, knowledge and authority often acquire a rather large ego that tends to make it difficult to admit we are wrong. So, here it is. I freely admit to being wrong.. As a heart surgeon with 25 years experience, having performed over 5,000 open-heart surgeries,today is my day to right the wrong with medical and scientific fact. I trained for many years with other prominent physicians labelled “opinion makers.”  Bombarded with scientific literature, continually attending education seminars, we opinion makers insisted heart disease resulted from the simple fact of elevated blood . The only accepted therapy was prescribing medications to lower cholesterol and a diet that severely restricted fat intake. The latter of course we insisted would lower cholesterol and heart disease. Deviations from these recommendations were considered heresy and could quite [...]


Wednesday, March 2, 2016

How Billionaires Use Non-Profits to Bypass Governments and Force Their Agendas on Humanity Main RSS Feed
As wealth becomes concentrated in fewer hands, so does political and social power via foundations and non-profits.

As wealth becomes concentrated in fewer and fewer hands, the billionaire class is increasingly turning to foundations and non-profits to enact the change they would like to see in the world. Amid the rise of philanthrocapitalism, growing numbers of critics are raising serious questions about whether this outsized influence is doing more harm than good.

In the January issue of the New York Review of Books, veteran journalist Michael Massing noted that, in the past 15 years alone, “the number of foundations with a billion dollars or more in assets has doubled, to more than eighty.” The philanthropic sector in the United States is far more significant than in Europe, fueled in part by generous tax write-offs, which the U.S. public subsidizes to the tune of $40 billion a year.

As Massing observes, billionaires are not just handing over their money, they have ideas about how it should be used, and their vision often aligns with their own economic interests. For this reason, the philanthropy industry deserves rigorous scrutiny, not a free pass because it is in the service of good.

Massing’s argument followed a study released in January by the watchdog organization Global Policy Forum, which found that philanthropic foundations are so powerful they are allowing wealthy individuals to bypass governments and international bodies like the United Nations in pursuit of their own agendas. What’s more, this outsized influence is concentrated in the United States, where 19 out of the top 27 largest foundations are based. These 27 foundations together possess $360 billion, write authors Jens Martens and Karolin Seitz.

Such dramatic wealth accumulation has disturbing implications. "What is the impact of framing the problems and defining development solutions by applying the business logic of profit-making institutions to philanthropic activities, for instance by results-based management or the focus on technological quick-win solutions in the sectors of health and agriculture?" the report asks.

These questions are not new, as social movements have long raised the alarm about the global impact of the ever-expanding philanthropy sector. In 2010, the international peasant movement La Via Campesina blasted the Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation’s acquisition of Monsanto shares as proof that its role in privatizing the global food supply and exporting big agribusiness, from Africa to North America, should be viewed through a commercial rather than humanitarian lens.

“It is really shocking for the peasant organizations and social movements in Haiti to learn about the decision of the [Gates] Foundation to buy Monsanto shares while it is giving money for agricultural projects in Haiti that promote the company’s seed and agrochemicals,” said Chavannes Jean-Baptiste of the Haitian Peasant Movement of Papaye and Caribbean coordinator of La Via Campesina at the time. “The peasant organizations in Haiti want to denounce this policy which is against the interests of 80 percent of the Haitian population, and is against peasant agriculture—the base of Haiti’s food production.”

The Gates Foundation more recently fell under scrutiny from the advocacy organization Global Justice Now, which released a report in January raising concerns about the institution’s track record on education, food and health care policies.

“The Gates Foundation has rapidly become the most influential actor in the world of global health and agricultural policies, but there’s no oversight or accountability in how that influence is managed,” said Polly Jones of Global Justice Now. “This concentration of power and influence is even more problematic when you consider that the philanthropic vision of the Gates Foundation seems to be largely based on the values of corporate America. The foundation is relentlessly promoting big business-based initiatives such as industrial agriculture, private health care and education. But these are all potentially exacerbating the problems of poverty and lack of access to basic resources that the foundation is supposed to be alleviating.”

Facebook CEO Mark Zuckerberg and his wife, Priscilla Chan, raised eyebrows in December when they announced they would give away 99 percent of their wealth. As it turned out, this was not a giveaway at all, but a shifting of funds into their own limited liability company (LLC). Just weeks later, Zuckerberg lashed out at Indian media justice advocates who raised concerns about his company’s efforts to undermine net neutrality protections in their country.

Like many others, Massing is calling for greater transparency, not only for foundations but for think tanks, Hollywood, Silicon Valley and universities. Pointing to the website Inside Philanthropy, whose stated purpose is to “pull back the curtain on one of the most powerful and dynamic forces shaping society,” Massing argues that far greater and better-resourced scrutiny is needed. “There remains the question of how to pay for all this,” writes Massing, posing: “Is there perhaps a consortium of donors out there willing to fund an operation that would part the curtains on its own world?”

But some argue that we already have all the information we need to be concerned. In December, Vandana Shiva, an ecofeminist and activist, wrote in response to Zuckerberg’s move in India that a “collective corporate assault is underway globally. Having lined up all their ducks, veterans of corporate America such as Bill Gates are being joined by the next wave of philanthro-corporate Imperialists, including Mark Zuckerberg.”

“It is an enclosure of the commons,” she continued, “which are ‘commons’ because they guarantee access to the commoner, whether it be seed, water, information or internet.”


Related Stories


Tuesday, March 1, 2016

"We're In Trouble": Stark Warning By Alan Greenspan +Videos

ZeroHedge As for whether Dodd-Frank has solved anything, Greenspan says no: "The regulations are supposed to be making changes of addressing the problems that existed in 2008 or leading up to 2008. It's not doing that. 'Too Big to Fail' is a critical issue back then, and now. And, there is nothing in Dodd-Frank which actually addresses this issue." And finally, here’s the punchline.


#OscarsSoScary | Free Range Kids

#OscarsSoScary | Free Range Kids:

When our whole society is at odds about everything else — immigrants, the economy, education — perhaps the one thing we can all agree on (even while congratulating ourselves for being so evolved) is that we hate rape, especially the rape of children. This shared revulsion could be the only glue still holding us together.

The problem with this particular glue is that we have poured it all over everything, to the point where it sticks to almost every aspect of our lives. It’s not just all over the Oscars, and TV, and the news. It’s part of our everyday lives. When we consider giving our kids even an ounce of unsupervised time, we can’t get the door open because it, too, is glued shut with child rape fear.

'via Blog this'

Financial Precipice à la 1929?

Douglas Rushkoff’s vision for a new, better world

Worst of all, this obligation to grow has turned otherwise promising companies into extractive monopolies. In order to grow, they use scorched-earth practices that take value from people and places and turn it into capital for their shareholders. This growth mandate is cause for the increasing disparity of wealth, and it has been energized and accelerated by digital technology. Digital technology was supposed to distribute this wealth to more people, not impoverish the many for the wealth of a few.

Monday, February 29, 2016

Law Professor Slams Summers: "Cash Is The Currency Of Freedom"

William Doyle: What Makes Finnish Schools So Successful?

Diane Ravitch's blog
William Doyle recently returned from a Fulbright year in Finland, and he spent his year studying education. His own child attended a Finnish school.   He wrote about some of the lessons he learned in this article that appeared in the Hechinger Report.   Here is the big takeaway:   If you want results, try […]