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Staying Sane in a Mad World

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America's Silent Chernobyl

Pacifying the Public
by Charmaine White Face
The USDA Forest Service from Custer National Forest out of Billings, MT, is responsible for a large area in the Northwestern corner of South Dakota. The Cave Hills and Slim Buttes area exhibits some of the most unique and beautiful landscapes in the state. This area also was used extensively in the 1960s for uranium mining, …open-pit uranium mining.
Unfortunately, at that time, there were no laws for reclamation, so 89 mines and prospects were left abandoned, according to information from the US Forest Service.

On Nov. 13, 2007, in the nearest community to the Cave Hills area, a blink of an eye place known as Ludlow, the Forest Service held an open house “to update the public on the activities happening at the site.” It was advertised in the regions’ daily newspaper a few times, and flyers were sent to interested individuals.

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John Graham Extradited to Face Trumped Charges

John Graham Secretly Deported to United States
by John Graham Defense Committee 
Following the illegal deportation of Leonard Peltier to the U.S., Canadian Native John Graham has also been deported in a similar fashion.  He was taken away in the early morning of December 6 and flown out of Abbotsford airport to Rapid City without his lawyer or his family allowed to see him.
His family immediately began trying to find out what had happened to him and were given the run around for a number of days.  They phoned Rapid City saying their father had been sent there.  The response was "we don't know where Canada is".

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Bali: Sinking or Swimming on Climate Change?

Trying to Square the Climate Circle
by William Bowles
Sink or Swim - The ‘choice’ apparently, is yours according to Hilary Benn, but only if you can breath under water and swim

Here, in the UK we have a minister for the environment, Hilary Benn is his name, son of doyen of the ‘left’ of the Labour Party, Anthony Wedgwood-Benn, whose swings from right to left are by now legendary (he’s currently stuck somewhere on what passes for the left).

Wedgie as he is known, renounced his aristocratic ‘pedigree’ to become plain ol’ Wedgie Benn. In any case Hilary (who seems to have dropped even more bits of his aristocratic legacy) is currently hanging out in Bali where the Climate Change conference has just come to a cliff-hanging conclusion, was interviewed on BBC Radio 4 on 14/12/07.

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The Democrat's Progress: No Progress

Democratic Process: Another Day, Another Capitulation        
by Chris Floyd     
Industry Flexes Muscle, Weaker Energy Bill Passes (NYT)
The Democratic "opposition" in Congress – you know, the party that represents the common people, good working folk and the most vulnerable in our society: the sick, the old, the poor, the children – have just effected yet another capitulation to Money Power, gutting an energy bill that would have required Big Oil – now reaping the most gargantuan profit margins in the entire history of human enterprise – to pay a pittance in new taxes.
Majority Leader Harry "Shaky Knees" Reid
The original bill would have also required utility companies to eventually produce a whopping 15 percent of their electricity from renewable energy sources. These measures – displeasing to the boardroom lords and their viceroy in the White House – were dutifully stripped out by Senate Majority Leader Harry "Shaky Knees" Reid. So what happens now?

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Torture's Democrat Protectors

Surprise! Mukasey Covers Up Torture
by Robert Parry
Last month, Democratic Sens. Charles Schumer of New York and Dianne Feinstein of California joined Republicans to ensure Michael Mukasey’s confirmation as Attorney General, even though he refused to acknowledge that the simulated drowning of waterboarding was torture.

Senate Democratic Majority Leader Harry Reid of Nevada helped the Bush administration, too, by rushing a floor vote on Mukasey before rank-and-file Democrats could get organized and push for a filibuster.

To show thanks, Mukasey now is slapping the Democratic-controlled Congress in the face by demanding it back off any oversight investigations into how and why the CIA in late 2005 destroyed videotapes of the waterboarding of al-Qaeda suspects.

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The Doomsday Vault: Preparing for the End of Humanity

"Doomsday Seed Vault" in the Arctic
Bill Gates, Rockefeller and the GMO
giants know something we don’t
by F. William Engdahl
The seed bank is being built inside a mountain on Spitsbergen Island near the small village of Longyearbyen. It’s almost ready for ‘business’ according to their releases.
The bank will have dual blast-proof doors with motion sensors, two airlocks, and walls of steel-reinforced concrete one meter thick. It will contain up to three million different varieties of seeds from the entire world, ‘so that crop diversity can be conserved for the future,’ according to the Norwegian government. Seeds will be specially wrapped to exclude moisture. There will be no full-time staff, but the vault's relative inaccessibility will facilitate monitoring any possible human activity.

Did we miss something here? Their press release stated, ‘so that crop diversity can be conserved for the future.’ What future do the seed bank’s sponsors foresee, that would threaten the global availability of current seeds, almost all of which are already well protected in designated seed banks around the world?

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A Liberal Interpretation of Torture by Alan Dershowitz

Alan Dershowitz on Waterboarding: An Expansion of State Power
by Mike Whitney
Alan Dershowitz is a skillful debater, a capable attorney, and a ferocious defender of Israel. He is also a Harvard professor and a former member of OJ Simpson’s legal defense called the Dream Team.

An article by Dershowitz appeared on op-ed page of the Wall Street Journal on Novemeber 7, 2007, titled “Democrats and Waterboarding”. In that article Dershowitz makes a spirited defense of waterboarding, going so far as to say that (he believes) the Democrats “will lose the presidential race if it defines itself as soft on terror.”
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Impeachment Beginnings: Judiciary Committee Calls for Cheney

House Judiciary Trio Calls for Impeach Cheney Hearings
by John Nichols
Three senior members of the House Judiciary Committee have called for the immediate opening of impeachment hearings for Vice President Richard Cheney.

Democrats Robert Wexler of Florida, Luis Gutierrez of Illinois and Tammy Baldwin of Wisconsin on Friday distributed a statement, “A Case for Hearings,” that declares, “The issues at hand are too serious to ignore, including credible allegations of abuse of power that if proven may well constitute high crimes and misdemeanors under our constitution.
"The charges against Vice President Cheney relate to his deceptive actions leading up to the Iraq war, the revelation of the identity of a covert agent for political retaliation, and the illegal wiretapping of American citizens.”

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RCMP: Cooping the Langford Tree-Sit

RCMP at the tree sit - eviction notice expected
by Zoe Blunt
Hi folks, This morning (Dec 14), eight RCMP officers are at the tree camp. We expect they will try to evict the camp either this weekend, or in the next week or two.
They may try to arrest people for trespassing right away, or they may apply to the court for an injunction.
Five people are in tree platforms and three are on the ground. These volunteers are defending the sacred cave and endangered species habitat from a destructive highway development just west of Spencer's Road and Goldstream Avenue in Langford.
We encourage folks to come out and witness today, this weekend, next week, or anytime. Please bring warm clothes for yourself, rain gear, video and still cameras with spare batteries and film, water bottles, and friends. Lawyers are standing by, and we are asking for additional legal help and media volunteers.
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Whose UN in Lebanon?

The United Nations Interim Force in Lebanon (UNIFIL)
Whose Mission is it fulfilling?      
by Franklin Lamb
In Lebanon, almost nobody, and certainly not UNIFIL, drinks the local water and I have not seen anything remotely resembling Tijuana; certainly not in my Hezbollah neighborhood, Dahiyeh.

Rather, from Naquora to Kafr Shuba, along the 75 mile 'blue line' fine French, Spanish and Italian wines are, understandably, the preferred default UNIFIL boire.

What has UNIFIL been doing in Lebanon?

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Bailing out Again the Billionaires

Billionaire Bailout: Central Bank Socialism
and America's True Values
by Chris Floyd     
It is not exactly news that the Western world's fetishized "free market" is actually a mixed economy, combining cradle-to-the-grave socialism for the rich with ball-breaking, bomb's-away capitalism for everyone else.
This truism was on naked display once again this week as the central banks of the United States, Britain, Switzerland, Canada and the Eurozone announced plans to provide almost $100 billion in taxpayer money to save their banking brethren from the consequences of their own greed and stupidity.
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