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Wall Street's "Immoral Hazard"

Immoral Hazard
by Stephen Lendman
So says Jeremy Grantham, co-founder of Boston-based investment firm Grantham, Mayo and Van Otterloo, now known as GMO. Some call him the philosopher king of Wall Street because of his highly insightful views on markets and the economy, usually with a longer-term perspective.
In a profession of touts, fast-buck and scam artists, Grantham's commentaries are notably refreshing. They're detailed, scholarly, sober, clear and especially important at a time of unparalleled excesses, great economic uncertainty, voices ranging from gloom and doom to blue skies and all clear ahead, so who knows what to believe. Few people sort things out better than he, and whether right or wrong, he makes consummate sense and should be taken seriously.

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A Case of Misplaced Blind Faith

The Critical Journey From Apathy to Empathy: A Case of Misplaced Blind Faith (Part one here)
by Shelley Bluejay Pierce
These famous words from the 1776 Declaration of Independence sound good in theory but in actuality, at the time they were written, the evident truth was that only a select few humans were deemed “equal.”

  • “We hold these truths to be self-evident, that all men are created equal, that they are endowed by their Creator  with certain unalienable Rights, that among these are Life, Liberty and the pursuit of Happiness.”

Equality did not include black slaves, most certainly was not bestowed upon the “heathen, savage, Indians” and did not include women or other minorities. Perhaps more accurately, the “self-evident” matter of equality for all human beings was a decision made by a small minority of European immigrants to this new land.

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The Great Oil Swindle

The Great Oil Swindle: How Much Did the Fed Really Know?
by Mike Whitney
The Commodity Futures and Trading Commission (CFTC) is investigating trading in oil futures to determine whether the surge in prices to record levels is the result of manipulation or fraud.
They might want to take a look at wheat, rice and corn futures while they're at it.
The whole thing is a hoax cooked up by the investment banks and hedge funds who are trying to dig their way out of the trillion dollar mortgage-backed securities (MBS) mess that they created by turning garbage loans into securities. That scam blew up in their face last August and left them scrounging for handouts from the Federal Reserve.
Now the billions of dollars they're getting from the Fed is being diverted into commodities which is destabilizing the world economy; driving gas prices to the moon and triggering food riots across the planet. 
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Pain and Conscience: Birth of a New Nation

Pain and Conscience
by Charles Sullivan
It is evident that a substantial majority of U.S. citizens are, in principle, opposed to the most destructive governmental policies stemming from the nation’s capital. These include, but are not limited to the continuing war and occupation of Iraq, as well as the pervasive consumer fraud that preys upon the innocent and the unwary and causes them undue hardship.
These charges are born out by the abysmal approval rating of Congress and the president. It is equally evident that the government, while pretending to be sympathetic to these views, continues to carry forth those same policies both at home and abroad. It does so without the consent of the people and, therefore, it has abrogated its responsibility to them.  

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Canada: The Land the Law Forgot

Canadian Law Leaves Muslims Under House Arrest
by Al Jazeera Reports
Al Jazeera's Nick Spicer reports on Canada's security laws that have led to the detention of several Muslims.

Canada's "security certificate" law allows the Government to detain non-citizens or put them under house arrest without charge.
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World Bank Chum into the Global Food Crisis Frenzy

World Bank Chum into the Global Food Crisis Frenzy: The Four Horses Ride Again
by C. L. Cook
The World Bank today charged out of the wilderness at the fourth International Conference on African Development (TICAD) in Tokyo to announce its 1.2 billion dollar (US) top up of a loans fund aimed at the heart of Africa, (including a few juicy throw-away grants to poverty-poster children in Haiti, Djibouti, and Liberia) with promises of more to come.


Well they had to come back, and honesty be told, we all know they had never really gone away; from the darkened wings is risen again the four-headed monster to the world's miserable, the World Bank (WB), International Monetary Fund (IMF), World Food Programme (WFE), and the Food and Agricultural Association (FOA), joined by a conglomeration of various other UN and EU international poverty pimps doing business under the rubric of "international institutions."

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Bush Promises to 'Nuke' Saudi Arabia

As US Threatens Iran Over Enriching Uranium, Bush Promises to Give Enriched Uranium to Saudi Arabia
by Democracy Now!
The Bush administration has pledged to support Saudi Arabia’s nuclear power program, including supplying enriched uranium for nuclear reactors. The agreement came out of President Bush’s visit to the Saudi kingdom last week, during which Bush also pledged new US assistance in guarding Saudi oil reserves.

AMY GOODMAN: We turn from cluster bombs to what could be a major development in nuclear proliferation worldwide: the Bush administration pledging to support Saudi Arabia’s nuclear power program, including supplying enriched uranium for nuclear reactors. The agreement came out of President Bush’s visit to the Saudi kingdom last week, during which Bush also pledged new US assistance in guarding Saudi oil reserves.

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Death on the Mountain

Death on the Mountain
by L'Ancienne
This is a powerful, hideous, and tragic story about ancient memories that do survive in the land, and in the rocks, and in the water. The cave on Bear Mountain had a shimmering clearwater underground lake in it. This cave was not only beautiful beyond compare, but was too a cave of ancient legend. And the mountain has known many legends over the centuries.

Some archaeologists were wrong when they assumed that there was no cultural use for this type of cave, (a wet cave, as opposed to a dry cave where one might expect to find artifacts). They probably truly didn't know about the traditional use of the land in this area. Maybe few archaeologists do.

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The End of the White House Frat Party

by Linda Milazzo
Yes, I know. John McCain was a prisoner of war and he survived to tell his tale. It's fortunate he survived and I commend him for his service, but as President he won’t prevail. He’s dangerous. He’s delusional. And he lacks the emotional stability and maturity for the job. Yes, he lacks the MATURITY for the job! He’s another privileged son of another privileged family who believes he’s entitled to the job. Well, he’s NOT!!

True, McCain suffered greatly as a POW, but to his good fortune when he did arrive home he was cloaked in his celebrity, provided every resource, and protected by his family – a decidedly different scenario from the isolation and lack of services lesser known vets are forced to endure. Their fates frequently result in homelessness, drug and alcohol addiction, and an inability to secure adequate medical and mental-health services for years - even decades. Not so for John McCain.

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Chevron and Systemic Human Rights Abuses

"Systemic" Human Rights Abuses Dominate Chevron Annual General Meeting, Casting Shadow over CEO and Record Profits
by Amazon Watch
In a dramatic face-to-face showdown at Chevron's annual general meeting, victims of the company's grave human rights abuses from three continents today told shareholders and senior executives that the oil major must live up to its corporate rhetoric on human rights and the environment, and also take decisive action to make amends to the communities it has devastated.
Chevron’s Victims from Burma, Ecuador and Nigeria
Confront CEO David O’Reilly at Shareholder Meeting

Community representatives from Burma, Ecuador and Nigeria traveled for days to participate in the meeting as proxy shareholders, calling on Chevron CEO David O'Reilly to stop hiding behind lawyers and PR misinformation, and to recognize and rectify the suffering the company has caused.

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The Self-Righteous Hit on Hillary

Assassinationgate: The Self-Righteous Hit on Hillary Clinton        
by Chris Floyd
There is of course no point in paying too much attention to the U.S. presidential campaign, which is almost entirely a monstrous excretion of meaningless, bull-roaring noise. True, a few hints of the horrors to come can be gleaned in broad outline -- chiefly by following the money behind each candidate, and also noting from which pool of imperial courtiers they draw their top advisors: i.e., the "kill 'em all" neocon crowd, the "more in sorrow than in anger" humanitarian interventionist school, the "let the poor eat dirt until they die" faction, or the "I feel your pain but Wall Street fills my coffers" contingent, etc. But to give more than a passing moment's heed to the excruciating and tedious minutiae of the horse race is, as the man says, an "expense of spirit in a waste of shame."

But occasionally the spectacle becomes so obtrusive that you can hardly avoid it. One such occasion was the uproar over Obama's preacher (which Arthur Silber, for one, has covered in illuminating detail). Another one belched forth from the belly of the beast last week: Hillary Clinton's "shocking" mention of the assassination of Robert Kennedy in 1968. From the tenor of the reaction to her statement, you would think she had been caught at the cauldron, summoning evil spirits from the deep to strike down the golden hero of the age.

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