MadMedic’s Post Venezuelans Now Regret Letting Government Take Their Guns Away: https://wordpress.com/read/feeds/347470/posts/2310497637

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Venezuelans Now Regret Letting Government Take Their Guns Away
Not long ago, millions of Venezuelans decided to become loved by the left and voted away their right to keep and bear arms. Now they regret it.

Published 3 days ago on June 11, 2019 By Warner Todd Huston

Venezuelans Now Regret Letting Government Take Their Guns Away

Not long ago, millions of Venezuelans decided to become loved by the left and voted away their right to keep and bear arms. But now that their government has descended into a socialist nightmare where everyone is starving to death, these same people are now regretting their votes to give away their right to self-defense.

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It is an object lesson for the folks here in the U.S. who want to travel down the same path as Venezuela; gun-free, socialism and all.

Venezuela implemented its gun ban six years ago before their world took its last steps into the living hell it has become. Now they have no defense against the junta and the socialist criminals controlling their nation.

“Hollywood’s favorite strongman banned arms for citizens. It has not ended well for those starving to death under a socialist dictatorship,” actor James Woods noted on Twitter.

https://pbs.twimg.com/card_img/1136824484391006208/X8kUWQbF?format=jpg&name=600×314
James Woods

@RealJamesWoods
Hollywood’s favorite strongman banned arms for citizens. It has not ended well for those starving to death under a socialist dictatorship… #DemocratsAreDangerous https://www.foxnews.com/world/venezuelans-regret-gun-prohibition-we-could-have-defended-ourselves

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Venezuelans regret gun ban, ‘a declaration of war against an unarmed population’
As Venezuela continues to crumble under the socialist dictatorship of President Nicolas Maduro, some are expressing words of warning – and resentment –regarding the country’s earlier gun control bill…

And boy is he right.

As Fox News reported on Friday:
“Guns would have served as a vital pillar to remaining a free people, or at least able to put up a fight,” Javier Vanegas, 28, a Venezuelan teacher of English now exiled in Ecuador, told Fox News. “The government security forces, at the beginning of this debacle, knew they had no real opposition to their force. Once things were this bad, it was a clear declaration of war against an unarmed population.”

Under the direction of then-President Hugo Chavez, the Venezuelan National Assembly in 2012 enacted the “Control of Arms, Munitions and Disarmament Law,” with the explicit aim to “disarm all citizens.” The law took effect in 2013, with only minimal pushback from some pro-democracy opposition figures, banned the legal commercial sale of guns and munitions to all – except government entities.

Naturally, Chavez sponsored a “gun buy-back” program before implementing his confiscation. Few Venezuelans were much interested in the government’s cash. So, by the end of the year, Chavez forcefully seized 12,500 guns. But that was just the start

And when Chavez mercifully died, the country’s next president, Maduro, continued the confiscation policies…

In 2014, with Nicolás Maduro at the helm following Chavez’s death but carrying through his socialist “Chavista” policies, the government invested more than $47 million enforcing the gun ban – which has since included grandiose displays of public weapons demolitions in the town square.

And since then? Well, the government has become despotic and has run roughshod over the Venezuelan people, jailing and shooting them at will. And the people now have no defense to stop Maduro from subjugating them.

“Venezuela shows the deadly peril when citizens are deprived of the means of resisting the depredations of a criminal government,” said David Kopel, a policy analyst, and research director at the Independence Institute and adjunct professor of Advanced Constitutional Law at Denver University. “The Venezuelan rulers – like their Cuban masters – apparently viewed citizen possession of arms as a potential danger to a permanent communist monopoly of power.”

No doubt.

Make no mistake, America. This is what Democrats want to happen here, America. They want the American people disarmed so that there is no resistance to their authoritarian reign. Democrats are fascists at heart but they know that your privately held firearms are the biggest threat to their power. Don’t give away your protection willingly.

Glyphosate Worse than We Could Imagine

“It’s Everywhere”
Glyphosate residues have been found in tap water, orange juice, children’s urine, breast milk, chips, snacks, beer, wine, cereals, eggs, oatmeal, wheat products, and most conventional foods tested. It’s everywhere, in brief.

Glyphosate is killing off good bacteria in the soil and in human intestines
Earthworms disappear, Humans can’t absorb some minerals because of Glyphosate

Glyphosate Worse than We Could Imagine. “It’s Everywhere”

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By F. William Engdahl
Global Research, April 27, 2019
Region: USA
Theme: Biotechnology and GMO, Law and Justice, Science and Medicine

As new studies continue to point to a direct link between the widely-used glyphosate herbicide and various forms of cancer, the agribusiness lobby fights ferociously to ignore or discredit evidence of human and other damage. A second US court jury case just ruled that Monsanto, now a part of the German Bayer AG, must pay $ 81 million in damages to plaintiff Edwin Hardeman who contracted non-Hodgkin’s lymphoma cancer. The ruling and a line-up of another 11,000 pending cases in US courts going after the effects of glyphosate, have hit Bayer AG hard with the company announcing several thousand layoffs as its stock price plunges.

In a trial in San Francisco the jury was unanimous in their verdict that Monsanto Roundup weed-killer, based on glyphosate, had been responsible for Hardeman’s cancer. His attorneys stated,

“It is clear from Monsanto’s actions that it does not care whether Roundup causes cancer, focusing instead on manipulating public opinion and undermining anyone who raises genuine and legitimate concerns about Roundup.”

It is the second defeat for the lawyers of Monsanto after another jury ruled in 2018 that Glyphosate-based Roundup was responsible for the cancer illness of a California school grounds-keeper who contracted the same form of cancer after daily spraying school grounds with Roundup over years, unprotected. There a jury found Monsanto guilty of “malice and oppression” in that company executives, based on internal email discovery, knew that their glyphosate products could cause cancer and suppressed this information from the public.

A new independent study shows that those with highest exposure to glyphosate have a 41% increased risk of developing non-Hodgkin lymphoma (NHL) cancer. A meta-analysis of six studies containing nearly 65,000 participants looked at links between glyphosate-based herbicides and immune-suppression, endocrine disruption and genetic alterations. The authors found “the same key finding: exposure to GBHs (glyphosate-based herbicides) are associated with an increased risk of NHL (Non-Hodgkin’s Lymphoma).” Further, they stated that glyphosate “alters the gut microbiome,” and that that could “impact the immune system, promote chronic inflammation, and contribute to the susceptibility of invading pathogens.” Glyphosate also ”may act as an endocrine disrupting chemical because it has been found recently to alter sex hormone production” in both male and female rats.

In a long-term animal study by French scientists under Gilles Eric Seralini, Michael Antoniou and associates, it was demonstrated that even ultra-low levels of glyphosate herbicides cause non-alcoholic liver disease. The levels the rats were exposed to, per kg of body weight, were far lower than what is allowed in our food supply. According to the Mayo Clinic, today, after four decades or more pervasive use of glyphosate pesticides, 100 million, or 1 out of 3 Americans now have liver disease. These diagnoses are in some as young as 8 years old.

Glyphosate from Monsanto’s Roundup Decimates Microbes in Soils and the Human Gut – New Science

But glyphosate is not only having alarming effects on human health. Soil scientists are beginning to realize the residues of glyphosate application are also having a possibly dramatic effect on soil health and nutrition, effects that can take years to restore.

Killing Soils too

While most attention is understandably drawn to the human effects of exposure to glyphosate, the most widely used agriculture chemical in the world today, independent scientists are beginning to look at another alarming effect of the agrochemical– its effect on essential soil nutrients. In a study of the health of soils in the EU, the online journal Politico.eu found that the effects of spraying of glyphosate on the major crops in European agriculture is having disastrous consequences on soil health in addition to killing weeds.

Scientists at Austria’s University of Natural Resources and Life Sciences in Vienna showed that casting activity of earthworms had nearly disappeared from the surface of farmland within three weeks of glyphosate application. Casting is the process of the worm pushing fertile soils to the surface as they burrow, essential for healthy soil and plant nutrition. A study at Holland’s Wageningen University of topsoil samples from more than 300 soil sites across the EU found that 83% of the soils contained 1 or more pesticide residues. Not surprisingly,

“Glyphosate and its metabolite AMPA, DDTs (DDT and its metabolites) and broad-spectrum fungicides… were the compounds most frequently found in soil samples and at the highest concentrations.”

The use of various pesticides, above all glyphosate-based ones like Roundup, has exploded over the past four decades across the EU much as across the USA. The agribusiness industry claims that this has been the key to the dramatic rise in farm crop productivity. However if we look more closely at the data, while average yields of major grains such as rice, wheat and maize have more than doubled since 1960, the use of pesticides like glyphosate-based ones has risen by 15-20-fold. Oddly enough, while the EU requires monitoring of many things, monitoring of pesticide residues in soil is not required at the EU level. Until recently the effects of heavy use of pesticides such as Roundup have been ignored in scientific research.

Evidence of soil experts is beginning to reveal clear links between use of pesticides such as glyphosate and dramatic drops in soil fertility and the collapse of microbe systems essential to healthy soil. Worms are one of the most essential.

It’s well-established that earthworms play a vital role in healthy soil nutrients. Soils lacking such are soils that deprive us of the essentials we need for healthy diets, a pandemic problem of soil depletion emerging globally over the past four decades, notably the same time frame that use of pesticides has exploded worldwide. Earthworms are beneficial as they enhance soil nutrient cycling and enhance other beneficial soil micro-organisms, and the concentration of large quantities of nutrients easily assimilable by plants.

The EU puts no limits on how much glyphosate can be put on crops even though it is established that glyphosate can kill specific fungi and bacteria that plants need to suck up nutrients in addition to its effects on earthworms. That is a major blind spot.

Where now?

What is becoming clearer is the colossal and obviously deliberate official blind eye given to potential dangers of glyphosate-based pesticides by regulatory bodies not only in the EU and the USA, but also in China, which today produces more glyphosate than even Monsanto. Since the Monsanto Roundup patent expired, Chinese companies, including Syngenta, Zhejiang Xinan Chemical Industrial Group Company, SinoHarvest, and Anhui Huaxing Chemical Industry Company, have emerged as the world’s major producers of the chemical as well as largest consumers, a not good omen for the future of the legendary Chinese cuisine.

Glyphosate is the base chemical component for some 750 different brands of pesticides worldwide, in addition to Monsanto-Bayer’s Roundup. Glyphosate residues have been found in tap water, orange juice, children’s urine, breast milk, chips, snacks, beer, wine, cereals, eggs, oatmeal, wheat products, and most conventional foods tested. It’s everywhere, in brief.

Despite the overwhelming evidence, however, EU Commission bureaucrats and the USA EPA continue to ignore prudence in not banning the toxic chemical pending thorough independent investigation over longer time. If I were cynical, I would almost think this continued official support for glyphosate-based herbicides is about more than mere bureaucratic stupidity or ignorance, even more than simply corruption, though that for sure plays a role. The nutritional quality of our food chain is being systematically destroyed and it is about more than corporate agribusiness profit.

*

Note to readers: please click the share buttons below. Forward this article to your email lists. Crosspost on your blog site, internet forums. etc.

F. William Engdahl is strategic risk consultant and lecturer, he holds a degree in politics from Princeton University and is a best-selling author on oil and geopolitics, exclusively for the online magazine “New Eastern Outlook” where this article was originally published. He is a frequent contributor to Global Research.

Featured image is from NEO

Glyphosate from Monsanto’s Roundup Decimates Microbes in Soils and the Human Gut – New Science

Gut bacteria is gaining increasing attention for the role it plays in our overall health. Given its influence on everything from immune function to digestion to brain function, research has been consistently showing the power of healthy gut bacteria – and the dangers of getting it wrong. Unfortunately, one very common chemical that has made its way to our food supply has now been shown to decimate gut microbes: glyphosate.

This chemical is already at the center of class action lawsuits filed by cancer patients, and the news keeps getting worse. As the main ingredient in the world’s most widely used herbicide, Monsanto’s Roundup, the ramifications for human health are huge.

Some of the medical problems linked to an imbalance of gut bacteria include colorectal cancer, diabetes, liver disease, cardiovascular disease, asthma, inflammatory bowel disease, autism and obesity.

As new studies continue to point to a direct link between the widely-used glyphosate herbicide and various forms of cancer, the agribusiness lobby fights ferociously to ignore or discredit evidence of human and other damage. A second US court jury case just ruled that Monsanto, now a part of the German Bayer AG, must pay $ 81 million in damages to plaintiff Edwin Hardeman who contracted non-Hodgkin’s lymphoma cancer. The ruling and a line-up of another 11,000 pending cases in US courts going after the effects of glyphosate, have hit Bayer AG hard with the company announcing several thousand layoffs as its stock price plunges.

In a trial in San Francisco the jury was unanimous in their verdict that Monsanto Roundup weed-killer, based on glyphosate, had been responsible for Hardeman’s cancer. His attorneys stated,

“It is clear from Monsanto’s actions that it does not care whether Roundup causes cancer, focusing instead on manipulating public opinion and undermining anyone who raises genuine and legitimate concerns about Roundup.”

It is the second defeat for the lawyers of Monsanto after another jury ruled in 2018 that Glyphosate-based Roundup was responsible for the cancer illness of a California school grounds-keeper who contracted the same form of cancer after daily spraying school grounds with Roundup over years, unprotected. There a jury found Monsanto guilty of “malice and oppression” in that company executives, based on internal email discovery, knew that their glyphosate products could cause cancer and suppressed this information from the public.

A new independent study shows that those with highest exposure to glyphosate have a 41% increased risk of developing non-Hodgkin lymphoma (NHL) cancer. A meta-analysis of six studies containing nearly 65,000 participants looked at links between glyphosate-based herbicides and immune-suppression, endocrine disruption and genetic alterations. The authors found “the same key finding: exposure to GBHs (glyphosate-based herbicides) are associated with an increased risk of NHL (Non-Hodgkin’s Lymphoma).” Further, they stated that glyphosate “alters the gut microbiome,” and that that could “impact the immune system, promote chronic inflammation, and contribute to the susceptibility of invading pathogens.” Glyphosate also ”may act as an endocrine disrupting chemical because it has been found recently to alter sex hormone production” in both male and female rats.

In a long-term animal study by French scientists under Gilles Eric Seralini, Michael Antoniou and associates, it was demonstrated that even ultra-low levels of glyphosate herbicides cause non-alcoholic liver disease. The levels the rats were exposed to, per kg of body weight, were far lower than what is allowed in our food supply. According to the Mayo Clinic, today, after four decades or more pervasive use of glyphosate pesticides, 100 million, or 1 out of 3 Americans now have liver disease. These diagnoses are in some as young as 8 years old.
Glyphosate from Monsanto’s Roundup Decimates Microbes in Soils and the Human Gut – New Science

But glyphosate is not only having alarming effects on human health. Soil scientists are beginning to realize the residues of glyphosate application are also having a possibly dramatic effect on soil health and nutrition, effects that can take years to restore.

Killing Soils too

While most attention is understandably drawn to the human effects of exposure to glyphosate, the most widely used agriculture chemical in the world today, independent scientists are beginning to look at another alarming effect of the agrochemical– its effect on essential soil nutrients. In a study of the health of soils in the EU, the online journal Politico.eu found that the effects of spraying of glyphosate on the major crops in European agriculture is having disastrous consequences on soil health in addition to killing weeds.

Scientists at Austria’s University of Natural Resources and Life Sciences in Vienna showed that casting activity of earthworms had nearly disappeared from the surface of farmland within three weeks of glyphosate application. Casting is the process of the worm pushing fertile soils to the surface as they burrow, essential for healthy soil and plant nutrition. A study at Holland’s Wageningen University of topsoil samples from more than 300 soil sites across the EU found that 83% of the soils contained 1 or more pesticide residues. Not surprisingly,

“Glyphosate and its metabolite AMPA, DDTs (DDT and its metabolites) and broad-spectrum fungicides… were the compounds most frequently found in soil samples and at the highest concentrations.”

The use of various pesticides, above all glyphosate-based ones like Roundup, has exploded over the past four decades across the EU much as across the USA. The agribusiness industry claims that this has been the key to the dramatic rise in farm crop productivity. However if we look more closely at the data, while average yields of major grains such as rice, wheat and maize have more than doubled since 1960, the use of pesticides like glyphosate-based ones has risen by 15-20-fold. Oddly enough, while the EU requires monitoring of many things, monitoring of pesticide residues in soil is not required at the EU level. Until recently the effects of heavy use of pesticides such as Roundup have been ignored in scientific research.

Evidence of soil experts is beginning to reveal clear links between use of pesticides such as glyphosate and dramatic drops in soil fertility and the collapse of microbe systems essential to healthy soil. Worms are one of the most essential.

It’s well-established that earthworms play a vital role in healthy soil nutrients. Soils lacking such are soils that deprive us of the essentials we need for healthy diets, a pandemic problem of soil depletion emerging globally over the past four decades, notably the same time frame that use of pesticides has exploded worldwide. Earthworms are beneficial as they enhance soil nutrient cycling and enhance other beneficial soil micro-organisms, and the concentration of large quantities of nutrients easily assimilable by plants.

The EU puts no limits on how much glyphosate can be put on crops even though it is established that glyphosate can kill specific fungi and bacteria that plants need to suck up nutrients in addition to its effects on earthworms. That is a major blind spot.

Where now?

What is becoming clearer is the colossal and obviously deliberate official blind eye given to potential dangers of glyphosate-based pesticides by regulatory bodies not only in the EU and the USA, but also in China, which today produces more glyphosate than even Monsanto. Since the Monsanto Roundup patent expired, Chinese companies, including Syngenta, Zhejiang Xinan Chemical Industrial Group Company, SinoHarvest, and Anhui Huaxing Chemical Industry Company, have emerged as the world’s major producers of the chemical as well as largest consumers, a not good omen for the future of the legendary Chinese cuisine.

Glyphosate is the base chemical component for some 750 different brands of pesticides worldwide, in addition to Monsanto-Bayer’s Roundup. Glyphosate residues have been found in tap water, orange juice, children’s urine, breast milk, chips, snacks, beer, wine, cereals, eggs, oatmeal, wheat products, and most conventional foods tested. It’s everywhere, in brief.

Despite the overwhelming evidence, however, EU Commission bureaucrats and the USA EPA continue to ignore prudence in not banning the toxic chemical pending thorough independent investigation over longer time. If I were cynical, I would almost think this continued official support for glyphosate-based herbicides is about more than mere bureaucratic stupidity or ignorance, even more than simply corruption, though that for sure plays a role. The nutritional quality of our food chain is being systematically destroyed and it is about more than corporate agribusiness profit.

Green New Deal Reveals the Naked Truth of Agenda 21, by Tom DeWeese

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apclogo600
https://americanpolicy.org/2019/02/25/green-new-deal-reveals-the-naked-truth-of-agenda-21/

25 Feb
Green New Deal Reveals the Naked Truth of Agenda 21
Posted at 13:59h
Environment, Featured, Property Rights, Sustainable Development
by Tom DeWeese

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Sometimes if you fight hard enough and refuse to back down, no matter the odds, your truth is vindicated and prevails!

For twenty years I have been labeled a conspiracy theorist, scaremonger, extremist, dangerous, nut case. I’ve been denied access to stages, major news programs, and awarded tin foil hats. All because I have worked to expose Agenda 21 and its policy of sustainable development as a danger to our property rights, economic system, and culture of freedom.

From its inception in 1992 at the United Nation’s Earth Summit, 50,000 delegates, heads of state, diplomats and Non-governmental organizations (NGOs) hailed Agenda 21 as the “comprehensive blueprint for the reorganization of human society.” The 350-page, 40 chapter, Agenda 21 document was quite detailed and explicit in its purpose and goals. They warned us that the reorganization would be dictated through all-encompassing policies affecting every aspect of our lives, using environmental protection simply as the excuse to pull at our emotions and get us to voluntarily surrender our liberties.

Section I details “Social and Economic Dimensions” of the plan, including redistribution of wealth to eradicate poverty, maintain health through vaccinations and modern medicine, and population control.

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To introduce the plan, the Earth Summit Chairman, Maurice Strong boldly proclaimed, “Current lifestyles and consumption patterns of the affluent middle class – involving meat intake, use of fossil fuels, appliances, air-conditioning, and suburban housing – are not sustainable.” Of course, according to the plan, if it’s not “sustainable” it must be stopped.

In support of the plan, David Brower of the Sierra Club (one of the NGO authors of the agenda) said, “Childbearing should be a punishable crime against society, unless the parents hold a government license.” Leading environmental groups advocated that the Earth could only support a maximum of one billion people, leading famed Dr. Jacques Cousteau to declare, “In order to stabilize world populations, we must eliminate 350,000 people per day.”

Section II provides the “Conservation and Management of Resources for Development” by outlining how environmental protection was to be the main weapon, including global protection of the atmosphere, land, mountains, oceans, and fresh waters – all under the control of the United Nations.

To achieve such global control to save the planet, it is necessary to eliminate national sovereignty and independent nations. Eliminating national borders quickly led to the excuse for openly allowing the “natural migration” of peoples. The UN Commission on Global Governance clearly outlined the goal for global control stating, “The concept of national sovereignty has been immutable, indeed a sacred principle of international relations. It is a principle which will yield only slowly and reluctantly to the new imperatives of global environmental cooperation.” That pretty much explains why the supporters of such a goal go a little off the rails when a presidential candidate makes his campaign slogan “Make America Great Again.”

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The main weapon for the Agenda was the threat of Environmental Armageddon, particularly manifested through the charge of man-made global warming, later to conveniently become “climate change.” It didn’t matter if true science refused to cooperate in this scheme as actual global temperatures really are not rising and there continues to be no evidence of any man-made affect on the climate. Truth hasn’t been important to the scare mongers. Timothy Wirth, President of the UN Foundation said, “We’ve got to ride this global warming issue. Even if the theory of global warming is wrong, we will be doing the right thing in terms of economic and environmental policy.” To further drive home their complete lack of concern for truth, Paul Watson of Green Peace declared, “It doesn’t matter what is true, it only matters what people believe is true.”

So in their zealotry to enforce the grand agenda, social justice became the “moral force” over the rule of law as free enterprise, private property, rural communities and individual consumption habits became the targets, labeled as racist and a social injustice. Such established institutions and free market economics were seen as obstructions to the plan, as were traditional family units, religion, and those who were able to live independently in rural areas.

Finally, Agenda 21 was summed up in supporting documents this way: “Effective execution of Agenda 21 will require a profound reorientation of all human society, unlike anything the world has ever experienced. It requires a major shift in the priorities of both governments and individuals, and an unprecedented redeployment of human and financial resources. This shift will demand that a concern for the environmental consequences of every human action be integrated into individual and collective decision-making at every level.”

Of course, such harsh terms had to be hidden from the American people if the plan was to be successfully imposed. They called it a “suggestion” for “voluntary” action – just in case a nation or community wanted to do something positive for mankind! However, while using such innocent-sounding language, the Agenda 21 shock troops lost no time pushing it into government policy. In 1992, just after its introduction at the Earth Summit, Nancy Pelosi introduced a resolution of support for the plan into Congress. It’s interesting to note that she boldly called it a “comprehensive blueprint for the reorganization of human society.” In 1993, new President, Bill Clinton ordered the establishment of the President’s Council for Sustainable Development, with the express purpose of enforcing the Agenda 21 blueprint into nearly every agency of the federal government to assure it became the law of the land. Then the American Planning Association issued a newsletter in 1994, supporting Agenda 21’s ideas as a “comprehensive blueprint” for local planning. So much for a voluntary idea!

However, as we, the opponents started to gain some ground in exposing its true purpose and citizens began to storm city halls protesting local implementation, suddenly the once proud proponents lost their collective memories about Agenda 21. Never heard of it! “There are no blue-helmeted troops at city hall,” said one proponent, meaning policies being used to impose it were not UN driven, but just “local, local, local”. “Oh, you mean that innocuous 20 year-old document that has no enforcement capability? This isn’t that!” These were the excuses that rained down on us from the planners, NGOs and government agents as they scrambled to hide their true intentions.

I was attacked on the front page of the New York Times Sunday paper under the headline, “Activists Fight Green Projects, Seeing U.N. Plot.” The Southern Poverty Law Center (SPLC) produced four separate reports on my efforts to stop it, calling our efforts an “Antigovernment Right-Wing Conspiracy Theory.” The Atlantic magazine ran a story entitled, “Is the UN Using Bike Paths to Achieve World Domination?” Attack articles appeared in the Washington Post, Esquire magazine, Wingnut Watch, Mother Jones, and Tree Hugger.com to name a few. All focused on labeling our opposition as tin-foil-hat-wearing nut jobs. Meanwhile, an alarmed American Planning Association (APA) created an “Agenda 21: Myths and Facts page on its web site to supposedly counter our claims. APA then organized a “Boot Camp” to retrain its planners to deal with us, using a “Glossary for the Public,” teaching them new ways to talk about planning. Said the opening line of the Glossary, “Given the heightened scrutiny of planners by some members of the public, what is said – or not said – is especially important in building support for planning.” The Glossary went on to list words not to use like “Public Visioning,” “Stakeholders,” “Density,” and “Smart Growth,” because such words make the “Critics see red”.

Local elected officials, backed by NGO groups and planners, began to deride local activists – sometimes denying them access to speak at public meetings, telling them that Agenda 21 conspiracy theory has “been debunked”. Most recently an irate city councilman answered a citizen who claimed local planning was part of Agenda 21 by saying “this is what’s “trending.” So, of course, if everyone is doing it is must be right!

Such has been our fight to stop this assault on our culture and Constitutional rights.

Over the years, since the introduction of Agenda 21 in 1992, the United Nations has created several companion updates to the original documents. This practice serves two purposes. One is to provide more detail on how the plan is to be implemented. The second is to excite its global activists with a new rallying cry. In 2000, the UN held the Millennium Summit, launching the Millennium Project featuring eight goals for global sustainability to be reached by 2015. Then, when those goals were not achieved, the UN held another summit in New York City in September of 2015, this time outlining 17 goals to be reached by 2030. This document became known as the 2030 Agenda, containing the exact same goals as were first outlined in Agenda 21in 1992, and then again in 2000, only with each new incarnation offering more explicit direction for completion.

Enter the Green New Deal, representing the boldest tactic yet. The origins and the purpose of the Green New Deal couldn’t be more transparent. The forces behind Agenda 21 and its goal of reorganizing human society have become both impatient and scared. Impatient that 27 years after Agenda 21 was introduced, and after hundreds of meetings, planning sessions, massive propaganda, and billions of dollars spent, the plan still is not fully in place. Scared because people around the world are starting to learn its true purpose and opposition is beginning to grow.

So the forces behind the Agenda have boldly thrown off their cloaking devices and their innocent sounding arguments that they just want to protect the environment and make a better life for us all. Instead, they are now openly revealing that their goal is socialism and global control, just as I’ve been warning about for these past twenty years. Now they are determined to take congressional action to finally make it the law of the land.

Take a good look, those of you who have heard my warnings about Agenda 21 over the years. Do you see the plan I have warned about being fully in place in this Green New Deal?

I warned that Agenda 21 would control every aspect of our lives, including how and were we live, the jobs we have, the mode of transportation available to us, and even what we eat. The Green New Deal is a tax on everything we do, make, wear, eat, drink, drive, import, export and even breathe.
In opposing Smart Growth plans in your local community, I said the main goal was to eliminate cars, to be replaced with bikes, walking, and light rail trains. The Green New Deal calls for the elimination of the internal combustion engine. Stay alert. The next step will be to put a ban on the sale of new combustion engines by a specific date and then limiting the number of new vehicles to be sold. Bans on commercial truck shipping will follow. Then they will turn to airplanes, reducing their use. Always higher and higher taxes will be used to get the public to “voluntarily” reduce their use of such personal transportation choices. That’s how it works, slowly but steadily towards the goal.
I warned that under Smart Growth programs now taking over every city in the nation that single-family homes are a target for elimination, to be replaced by high-rise stack and pack apartments in the name of reducing energy use. That will include curfews on carbon heating systems, mandating they be turned off during certain hours. Heating oil devises will become illegal. Gradually, energy use of any kind will be continually reduced. The Green New Deal calls for government control of every single home, office and factory to tear down or retrofit them to comply with massive environmental energy regulations.
I warned that Agenda 21 Sustainable policy sought to drive those in rural areas off the farms and into the cities where they could be better controlled. Those in the cities will be ordered to convert their gardens into food producers. Most recently I warned that the beef industry is a direct target for elimination. It will start with mandatory decreases in meat consumption until it disappears form our daily diet. The consumption of dairy will follow. Since the revelation of the Green New Deal the national debate is now over cattle emissions of methane and the drive to eliminate them from the planet. Controlling what we eat is a major part of the Green New Deal.
I warned that part of the plan for Agenda 2030 was “Zero Economic Growth.” The Green New Deal calls for a massive welfare plan where no one earns more than anyone else. Incentive to get ahead is dead. New inventions would disrupt their plan for a well-organized, controlled society. So, where will jobs come from after we have banned most manufacturing, shut down most stores, stopped single-family home construction, closed the airline industry, and severely regulated farms and the entire food industry? This is their answer to the hated free markets and individual choice.

The Green New Deal will destroy the very concept of our Constitutional Republic, eliminating private property, locally elected representative government, free markets and individual freedom. All decisions in our lives will be made for us by the government – just to protect the environment of course. They haven’t forgotten how well that scheme works to keep the masses under control.

Cortez

Though the label “Green New Deal” has been passing around globalist circles for a while, it’s interesting that its leaders have now handed it to a naïve, inexperienced little girl from New York who suddenly found herself rise from bartending to a national media sensation, almost over night. That doesn’t just happen and there is no miracle here. Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez is a created product. They probably needed her inexperienced enthusiasm to deliver the Green New Deal because no established politician would touch it. Now that it’s been introduced and she is set up to take the heat, the gates have swung open allowing forty-five members of Congress to co-sponsor it in the House of Representatives as established Senator Ed. Markey (D-MA) has sponsored it in the Senate. That doesn’t just happen either. Nothing has been left to chance.

Behind the sudden excitement and rush to support it are three radical groups each having direct ties to George Soros, including the Sunrise Movement – which markets itself as an “army of young people” seeking to make climate change a major priority. Justice Democrats – which finds and recruits progressive candidates, and New Consensus – organized to change how we think about issues. Leaders of these groups have connections with other Soros-backed movements including Black Lives Matter and Occupy Wall Street. According to The New Yorker magazine, the plan was written over a single weekend in December, 2018. Ocasio-Cortez was included in the effort, chosen to introduce it. This may be the single reason why she was able to appear out of nowhere to become the new darling of the radical left.

So there you have it — Agenda 21, the Millennium Project, Agenda 2030, the Green New Deal. Progress in the world of Progressives! They warned us from the beginning that their plan was the “comprehensive blueprint for the reorganization of human society”. And so it is to be the total destruction of our way of life.

To all of those elected officials, local, state and federal, who have smirked at we who have tried to sound the alarm, look around you now, hot shots! You have denied, ignored, and yet, helped put these very plans into place. Are you prepared to accept what you have done? Will you allow your own homes and offices to be torn down – or will you be exempt as part of the elite or just useful idiots? Will you have to give up your car and ride your bike to work? Or is that just for we peasants?

Over these years you have listened to the Sierra Club, the Nature Conservancy, the World Wildlife Fund, ICLEI, the American Planning Association, and many more, as they assured you their plans were just environmental protection, just good policy for future generations. They have been lying to you to fulfill their own agenda! Well, now the truth is right in front of you. There is no question of who and what is behind this. And no doubt as to what the final result will be.

Now, our elected leaders have to ask real questions. As the Green New Deal is implemented, and all energy except worthless, unworkable wind and solar are put into place, are you ready for the energy curfews that you will be forced to impose, perhaps each night as the sun fades, forcing factories, restaurants, hospitals, and stores to close at dusk? How about all those folks forced to live in the stack and pack high-rises when the elevators don’t operate? What if they have an emergency?

How much energy will it take to rebuild those buildings that must be destroyed or retrofitted to maker them environmentally correct for your brave new world? Where will it come from after you have banned and destroyed all the workable sources of real energy? What are you counting on to provide you with food, shelter, and the ability to travel so you can continue to push this poison? Because – this is what’s trending — now! And how is it going to be financed when the entire economy crashes under its weight? Is it really the future you want for you, your family, and your constituents who elected you?

Every industry under attack by this lunacy should now join our efforts to stop it. Cattlemen, farmers, airlines, the auto industry, realtors, tourist industry, and many more, all will be put out of business – all should now take bold action to immediately kill this plan before it kills your industry. Stomp it so deeply into the ground that no politician will ever dare think about resurrecting it.

For years I’ve watched politicians smirk, roll their eyes, and sigh whenever the words Agenda 21 were uttered. As George Orwell said, “The further a society drifts from the truth the more it will hate those who speak it”. Today I stand vindicated in my warnings of where Agenda 21 was truly headed, because it’s not longer me having to reveal the threat. They are telling you themselves. Here’s the naked truth – Socialism is for the stupid. The Green New Deal is pure Socialism. How far its perpetrators get in enforcing it depends entirely on how hard you are willing to fight for freedom. Kill it now or watch freedom die.
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Short-Term Pain, Long-Term Wonder Foreclosure.com Scholarship Program Winning Essay 2017, (Grand Prize)

You know, I just read the following article, and see that the “Millennials” are being brain washed. Goldman Sachs said back around 2008 “Only the rich should own houses, everyone else should be renting”. Sorry, I am still looking for the article wherein I quoted from. I will find it, I used that in a brief.

I knew that meant trouble. Even with foreclosure hell in the middle of its heyday, it still meant something. Not long after that, people being foreclosed upon, began being offered the chance to rent the house that they just lost.

Now, these third party entities popped up almost over night, and instead of the properties at foreclosure, reverting back to the lenders, these third parties now purchase at foreclosure auctions. Then they offer to rent you your house, or take you to magistrate court and have your thrown out, instead of the banks having to do that.

Funny thing, if you research most of these third parties, back far enough, the banks own them too, so still the same thing, just different names. Nevertheless, I could not help but post the article. It is obvious that “they” want us all in little apartments in and around the cities, easier to control “us”. I just had not realized that they were in the progress of brain-washing the Millennials into not even wanting to own a house.

Read the article:

Short-Term Pain, Long-Term Wonder
Foreclosure.com Scholarship Program Winning Essay 2017, (Grand Prize)
https://article.foreclosure.com/short-term-pain-long-term-wonder-82f82b90ff52
Go to the profile of Foreclosure.com Staff
Foreclosure.com Staff
Feb 28, 2018
By Jack Duffley | University of Illinois At Urbana-Champaign

foreclosure-kid
(photo from https://article.foreclosure.com/short-term-pain-long-term-wonder-82f82b90ff52)

In the gleeful times of 2005, my parents decided, like so many others, that it was time to “upgrade.” They sold our smaller home on the other side of town, which had appreciated nicely, and bought a 3700 square foot behemoth in a town with already exorbitant property taxes. My younger brother and I were thrilled to finally have a basement, our own rooms, and even a concrete basketball court in our backyard! All eight-year-old me knew was that things were going to be a whole lot more comfortable from there, and my optimistic parents seemed to think the same.

Jack Duffley | University of Illinois At Urbana-Champaign
The year is 2017, and my parents have only just now reached the equity levels in the house that they started with over a decade ago, nearly one-hundred-fifty mortgage payments later. However, after being bombarded by extremely high taxes for that entire time, they are essentially underwater on the property, but see little choice but to hang on for dear life until equity recovers just a bit more before they abandon ship. A thin retirement plan, mostly resting on the house, has forced their hand.

My parents’ story is in no way unique; millions of Americans who purchased homes before the 2008 recession have faced similar dilemmas, often worse than theirs. Many had no choice but to foreclose during the worst of it. After all, the homeownership rate has declined almost 5 points nationwide since the recession.[1] If anything, they can be considered lucky, yet they are still stuck in the mud. Their children, on the other hand, are now at their own fork in the road: to be [a homeowner] or not to be.

And, all things considered, they are often choosing not to be. The census shows a stark dip in homeownership among those under the age of 35 of almost 10 percent, lowering significantly from its peak pre-recessionary levels of 43 percent to a dismal 34 percent. At the same time, rental vacancy rates nationwide fell from over 10 percent to less than 7 percent as more people turned to renting, millennials especially.[2] Why is this happening?

Aside from the obvious fear of the failure that their parents faced, millennials are renting more as they define their own unique lifestyle. Millennials, in ever increasing numbers, are focusing on “living now.” They are choosing to move into urban areas in particular. As a predominantly liberal group, and with large cities tending to lean left, this is partially due to political forces. The majority, however, is due to lifestyle conveniences that come with a city: multiple options for transportation and not needing to own a car, proximity to cultural events and nightlife, and, especially with the decline of the suburbs as retail simultaneously sinks, a more positive future economic outlook. They more readily take the loss in living space for these benefits than their previous generations did.

At the same time, a growing number of millennials are facing burdensome student loan debt. Rather than come out of college with pristine back-end ratios primed for a hefty mortgage, they are handcuffed by the debt that they have amassed in their early twenties. As the Pew Research Center has noted, 37 percent of people under the age of thirty have student loan debt. They contribute to the $1.3 trillion in student debt, leverage that could presumably be used for a mortgage or some other useful credit if it were not locked up already.[3] Millennials are trying to increase their earning power by going to school so that they have the opportunity to advance economically, but it is simultaneously holding many of them back via years of extra debt — debt that is notably not going to a physical asset.

What does this mean for real estate? For the single family home market, it spells disaster, at least in the short term. Grant Cardone, one of the premier real estate investors in the world, calls homeownership a “scam,” and emphasizes that renting over homeownership among young people is becoming more and more popular. He notes that there is a huge need for affordable rentals as millennials deviate away from single family homes. Cardone is always one to advocate renting as a more advantageous and flexible lifestyle choice, and, as it has been mentioned, millennials increasingly value the flexibility that comes with renting instead of buying a home. Many, like Cardone, now see homeownership as a solely negative ordeal.

While it may not be up to the level of a “scam,” there are significant drawbacks with owning a home. For one, it locks up a significant amount of capital, money that could be used for a number of different projects or investments. In sum, homeownership is very expensive, at least in the short term when people make their initial down payment and any potential renovations. This makes it very hard to own a home for people of all ages. Additionally, owning a home can financially lock someone to a particular location, one which they might not want to be in after a while. Finally, for those hoping for appreciation when they purchase their home, as with any investment, there is a chance that it does not pan out. A poorly timed crash can wipe out an owner’s equity in seconds just as it did to my parents and so many others.

While there are drawbacks, the Great Recession and its subsequent lifestyle shift suggest the lack of education about the benefits of owning real estate. Even my parents are constantly warning me of the dangers of homeownership; the shift is not totally driven by millennials themselves. They too are still shaken by their mistakes and the sledgehammer that was the crash. They ignore the value of building equity over the long term, the typical tax benefits that come with a primary residence, and the relative stability of the real estate market because they mistakenly overpaid for a house that, in hindsight, they cannot comfortably afford in a downturn. They just hope that I do not do the same, and rightfully so. However, what millennials should have learned from the recession is not that real estate is bad, but that they simply must be careful and reasonable with what they assume when purchasing it.
3310-Harrison-Rd-east-point
Unfortunately, the average consumer purchases on emotion. With the tremendous amounts of emotional trauma from the recession, millennials are increasingly refusing to buy a home as their parents might have desired at the same age. But what are they purchasing in its place? Many take on higher rents, consistent with the “living now” mentality. Many more use their money to buy a wealth of products online. Some are even speculating on cryptocurrency, something far more unknown than real estate, expecting to make a lot of money. Why do they do that? Because the average consumer purchases on emotion, not on something systematic. Real estate has already been proven to be a relatively safe and a potentially very powerful asset. Instead, the negatives have been, and continue to be, emphasized. This masks the positives of owning a home, or even a simple condo. Millennials in some cases are mistakenly ignoring all real estate and not just the kind of overleveraging or speculating that got their parents into trouble.

Does this spell the end to America? Will the country burst into flames as millennials move to urban areas? Of course not. It must be noted that the current trend does not own the future; millennials could very well begin to purchase homes in huge numbers, especially as prices drop over the next few years. While it is likely that this will not be the case, it is impossible for anyone but millennials themselves to determine that.

What is certain is that, in the short run, there will be pain. The single family housing market is going to suffer as millennials make lifestyle choices contrary to their parents. The market will be oversupplied with single family homes. However, millennials will still need a place to live, just like anyone else. Their increasing demand for urban locations and conveniences will push rent up in cities, as it already has in places like San Francisco and Seattle. This will open a new, and huge, opportunity for real estate investors and developers alike to profit in the cities as millennials develop their own American Dream. After all, a dream is only what a person makes of it, not what someone else defines it as.

References:
[1] U.S. Census Bureau, Annual Homeownership Rates for the United States and Regions: 1968–2016, (accessed Dec 10, 2010), https://www.census.gov/housing/hvs/data/charts/fig05.pdf

[2] U.S. Census Bureau, Annual Rental Vacancy Rates for the United States and Regions: 1968–2016, (accessed Dec 10, 2010), https://www.census.gov/housing/hvs/data/charts/fig03.pdf

[3] Anthony Cilluffo, “5 facts about U.S. student loans,” Pew Research Center, last modified August 24, 2017. http://www.pewresearch.org/fact-tank/2017/08/24/5-facts-about-student-loans/

The winning essay above was submitted to Foreclosure.com’s scholarship program.

The 2017 essay topic:
IS THE “AMERICAN DREAM” OF ONE DAY OWNING A HOME ALIVE AND WELL AMONG MILLENNIALS?
Millennials having experienced the “Great Recession,” which was the traumatic housing crisis that triggered the financial crisis a decade ago. As a result, data suggests that Millennials (those born between 1981 to 1997) have been slow to adopt homeownership. Discuss the pros and cons of homeownership for Millennials, as well as which factors could increase or decrease homeownership among the generation. Will their collective hesitation and apprehension hurt them in the long run or are Millennials simply in the process of re-defining the “American Dream?”

2nd Circuit Upholds Insider Trading Conviction of Ex-Goldman Sachs Director The panel’s decision represented the latest retreat from the appellate court’s holding in 2014’s “U.S. v. Newman,” which narrowed prosecutors’ ability to prove insider trading.

Gupta-m1114755-web2
Rajat Gupta, right, with his attorney Gary Naftalis, following his sentencing in 2012. Photo: Louis Lanzano/ Bloomberg
https://www.law.com/newyorklawjournal/2019/01/07/2nd-circuit-upholds-insider-trading-conviction-of-ex-goldman-sachs-director/
By Colby Hamilton | January 07, 2019 at 04:12 PM

For the second time in as many months the U.S. Court of Appeals for the Second Circuit has declined to reverse an insider trading secured by federal prosecutors before the circuit court’s ruling in United States v. Newman and the sequence of decisions it spawned.

On Monday, the panel, composed of Circuit Judges Amalya Kearse, Richard Wesley and Christopher Droney, denied former Goldman Sachs director Rajat Gupta’s second attempt to have his insider trading conviction overturned. The Second Circuit had previously in 2014 denied Gupta’s argument that the trial court erred in admitting some evidence, while excluding other evidence offered by the defense ahead of his 2012 conviction. He ultimately served 19 months in prison, and was released in 2016.

The current appeal came after U.S. District Judge Jed Rakoff of the Southern District of New York denied Gupta’s motion to vacate his conviction in the wake of the Second Circuit’s 2014 decision in Newman, which substantially narrowed the “personal benefit” requirements of an insider trading relationship. Gupta argued before Rakoff that the jury instructions in his case were legally invalid under Newman.

On appeal, the panel reviewed Gupta’s challenge based on a cause-and-prejudice standard. It agreed with Rakoff’s argument that nothing stopped Gupta from arguing that the jury instructions were faulty on direct appeal from his conviction, since they were made during trial.

The panel observed that its November 2018 decision in Whitman v. United States tracks closely with the dynamics of Gupta’s case, as jury instructions were objected to at trial but weren’t pursued on appeal. Other insider trading cases pursued the line on appeal before Newman, the panel noted, making the claims in Whitman—and therefore Gupta’s case—insufficient to show cause.

Defendants in other insider trading prosecutions were contending that juries should be given narrower definitions of the personal benefit needed to find culpable insider trading,” the panel wrote. “We conclude that [Gupta] presents no viable claim that the personal benefit challenge was unavailable to his counsel on appeal.”

While the panel, having found Gupta failing the cause standard, could arguably have ended its findings there, it proceeded to address the issue of prejudice, and, in doing so, waded directly back in to the circuit’s muddied law on insider trading.

The panel first found that Gupta failed to show the personal benefit instructions were so flawed as to deny him due process, noting that the actual language provided to the jury in question spoke of “maintaining a good relationship with a frequent business partner.”

That last clause proved critical for the panel, who argued it squared with requirements under precedent, but not the Second Circuit’s most recent double take in United States v. Martoma, which is mentioned briefly later. Instead, the panel opted to return to the insider trading Ur-precedent from the Supreme Court’s 1983 decision in Dirks v. SEC.

The Dirks court set out a “varying sets of circumstances…which would warrant a finding of the tipper’s illegal purpose,” the panel noted. Despite the fact the specific language required by Newman for a tangible or pecuniary benefit was not present in Gupta’s jury instructions, the language was satisfactory under Dirks’ seemingly broader “circumstances.”

In fact, the panel’s acknowledgment that Dirks highlighting the ability for a quid pro quo relationship despite “the lack of need for proof of the tipper’s financial or tangible gain” appeared to potentially undercut a portion of the court’s holding in Newman, continuing the erosion that began with the Supreme Court’s findings in Salman v. United States and continued through the two versions of the Second Circuit’s Martoma decision.

The fact that Newman‘s requirement for proof of a tipper’s pecuniary or other tangible gain has been rejected by the Supreme Court disposes of Gupta’s contention that Newman meant the trial court’s instruction that proof of pecuniary or tangible benefit was not necessary caused him to be convicted of a crime for ‘conduct that is not criminal,’” the panel said, quoting from Gupta’s brief on appeal.

A spokesman for the U.S. Attorney’s Office for the Southern District of New York, which secured Gupta’s original conviction and handled the appeal, declined to comment.

Kramer Levin Naftalis & Frankel name attorney Gary Naftalis handled Gupta’s appeal. He did not respond to a request for comment.

Related:

RBS bankers joked about destroying the US housing market By Rob Davies

RBS bankers joked about destroying the US housing market
By Editor August 16, 2018
http://www.theeventchronicle.com/finanace/rbs-bankers-joked-about-destroying-the-us-housing-market/


A boarded up building in Cleveland, Ohio, in January 2008. In the build up to the crisis mortgage lenders were incentivised to make as many loans as possible. Photograph: Timothy A. Clary/AFP/Getty Images
Transcripts of pre-financial crisis conversations show senior bankers’ disregard for customers

By Rob Davies

RBS bankers joked about destroying the US housing market after making millions by trading loans that staff described as “total fucking garbage”, according to transcripts released as part of a $4.9bn (£3.8bn) settlement with US prosecutors.

Details of internal conversations at the bank emerged just weeks before the 10-year anniversary of the financial crisis, which saw RBS rescued with a £45bn bailout from the UK government.

The US Department of Justice (DoJ) criticised RBS over its trade in residential mortgage backed securities (RMBS) – financial instruments underwritten by risky home loans that are cited as pivotal in the global banking crash.

It said the bank made “false and misleading representations” to investors in order to sell more of the RMBS, which are forecast to result in losses of $55bn to investors.

Transcripts published alongside the settlement reveal the attitude among senior bankers at RBS towards some of the products they sold.

The bank’s chief credit officer in the US referred to selling investors products backed by “total fucking garbage” loans with “fraud [that]was so rampant … [and]all random”.

He added that “the loans are all disguised to, you know, look okay kind of … in a data file.”

The DoJ said senior RBS executives “showed little regard for their misconduct and, internally, made light of it”.

In one exchange, as the extent of the contagion in the banking industry was becoming clear, RBS’ head trader received a call from a friend who said: “[I’m] sure your parents never imagine[d]they’d raise a son who [would]destroy the housing market in the richest nation on the planet.”

He responded: “I take exception to the word ‘destroy.’ I am more comfortable with ‘severely damage.’”

Another senior banker explained to a colleague that risky loans were the result of a broken mortgage industry that meant lenders were “raking in the money” and were incentivised to make as many loans as possible.

Employees who might raise the alarm about the riskiness of such lending “don’t give a shit because they’re not getting paid”, he said.

The bank made “hundreds of millions of dollars” from selling RMBS, the DoJ said, while disguising the risk they posed to investors, which included a group of nuns who lost 96% of their investment.

By October 2007, as signs of stress began to show in the banking system, RBS’ chief credit officer wrote to colleagues expressing his true feelings about the burgeoning volume of subprime loans in the housing market.

He said loans were being pushed by “every possible … style of scumbag”, adding that it was “like quasi-organised crime”.

“Nobody seems to care,” he added.
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The DoJ criticised RBS’ failure to do due diligence on the loans it was packaging, saying the bank feared it would lose out to rivals if it performed stricter tests.

One analyst at the lender referred to the bank’s due diligence procedures as “just a bunch of bullshit”, according to the transcripts.

When the bank became concerned about the poor quality of loans and started imposing tighter due diligence, one senior banker complained, saying: “Oh, God. Does anyone want to make money around here any more?”

RBS expected to make $20m from one deal that involved trading particularly risky loans, but faced resistance from the bank’s chief credit officer.

A senior executive responded to the concerns by telling the bank’s head trader: “Please don’t fuckin’ blow this one. We need every dollar we can get our hands on.”

Internal conversations between bankers also offer some insight into their growing realisation of the poor quality of the loans the bank owned and sold.

In September 2007, one trader referred to an appraisal of loans as giving “pretty shitty results”.

The transcripts were released by the DoJ as it confirmed the details of the settlement with the bank over its trading in RMBS.

RBS said: “Under the terms of the settlement, RBS disputes the allegations but will not set out a legal defence, while the settlement does not constitute a judicial finding.”

Certainty over the scale of the settlement will allow the bank to pay its first dividend in a decade this year.

The dividend is worth £240m and the Treasury will receive £149m as RBS is still 62%-owned by the government.

Ross McEwan, RBS chief executive, said: “This settlement dates back to the period between 2005 and 2007. There is no place for the sort of unacceptable behaviour alleged by the DoJ at the bank we are building today.”

He added that the bank could now “focus our energy on serving our customers better”.

But league tables published by the Competition and Markets Authority on Wednesday placed RBS joint bottom for customer service, with fewer than half of customers saying they would recommend the bank to a friend.

RBS will have to publish the results in branches, on its website and mobile app from today.

This article (RBS bankers joked about destroying the US housing market) was originally published on The Guardian and syndicated by The Event Chronicle.

The Event Chronicle: Salisbury Nerve Agent Attack Reveals $70 Million Pentagon Program At Porton Down


Salisbury Nerve Agent Attack Reveals $70 Million Pentagon Program At Porton Down
By Editor April 4, 2018
http://www.theeventchronicle.com/study/salisbury-nerve-agent-attack-reveals-70-million-pentagon-program-at-porton-down-2/

Salisbury Nerve Agent Attack Reveals $70 Million Pentagon Program At Porton Down
Signs prohibiting access near to the Porton Down Defence Science and Technology Laboratory, near Salisbury, Britain, March 19, 2018. © Peter Nicholls / Reuters

Dilyana Gaytandzhieva is a Bulgarian investigative journalist and Middle East Correspondent. Over the last two years she has published a series of revealing reports on weapons smuggling. Two months ago South Front published her investigation into the Pentagon bio laboratories in 25 countries across the world. Her current report provides an overview of the Pentagon-funded experiments at the secretive UK military laboratory Porton Down near Salisbury, where an ex-Russian spy and his daughter were allegedly poisoned with a nerve agent. Twitter/@dgaytandzhieva

By Dilyana Gaytandzhieva exclusively for SouthFront

The Pentagon has spent at least $70 million on military experiments involving tests with deadly viruses and chemical agents at Porton Down – the UK military laboratory near the city of Salisbury. The secretive biological and chemical research facility is located just 13 km from where on 4th March former Russian spy Sergei Skripal and his daughter Yulia were found slumped on a bench following an alleged Novichok nerve agent poisoning.



The Porton Down Lab is located just 13 km from the site where Sergei Skripal and his daughter were found and from where they were rushed to hospital.

Information obtained from the US federal contracts registry reveals that the Pentagon’s Defense Threat Reduction Agency (DTRA) has funded a number of military projects performed at the UK Defence Science and Technology Laboratory (DSTL), or Porton Down, over the last decade. Among them: experimental respiratory infection of non-human primates (marmosets) with Anthrax, Ebola virus, Marburg virus, Venezuelan equine encephalitis virus, Western equine encephalitis virus, and Eastern equine encephalitis virus. The US Defense Threat Reduction Agency (DTRA) has also funded experiments on animals which were exposed to chemical agents such as Sulfur Mustard and Phosgene gas. Phosgene gas was used as a chemical weapon during World War I where it was responsible for about 85 % of the 100,000 deaths caused by chemical weapons.

DTRA has also been granted full access to DSTL scientific and technical capabilities, and test data under a 2011 contract for the collaboration and exchange of scientific and technical capabilities with the UK Ministry of Defence.
At least 122,000 animals used for military chemical and biological experiments at Porton Down

Animal experiments are classified as confidential in the UK. Under section 24 of the Animals (Scientific Procedures) Act 1986, it is a criminal offence to disclose certain information about animal experiments in the UK.

Data obtained via the Freedom of Information Act though gives an idea of the dimensions of military chemical and biological experiments carried out at Porton Down. A total of 122,050 animals have been exposed to deadly pathogens, chemicals and incurable diseases over the last decade (2005-2016).


Monkeys being used in warfare agent testing at Porton Down in the past

Animals used include mice, guinea pigs, rats, pigs, ferrets, sheep, and non-human primates. Some of the deadly experiments have been sponsored by the Pentagon under contracts between DSTL and DTRA. Scientists at Porton Down have infected, or poisoned, animals in order to measure time to death and lethal dose of exposure. In practice, the possible use of the researched virus/chemical gas as a weapon.


Marmoset monkeys are experimentally infected at Porton Down with Ebola, Anthrax, Marburg Virus and other deadly pathogens. Scientists measure time to death and lethal dose of exposure to the bio agent. Photo credit: Vic Pigula
Ebola as bioweapon

12 Marmoset monkeys were experimentally infected with the Ebola virus, via aerosol, at Porton Down under a Pentagon-funded project – Experimental respiratory infection of marmosets with Ebola virus Kikwit (the Zaire strain of the Ebola virus which killed more than 245 people in Zaire, now Democratic Republic of Congo, in 1995). The project was part of a $6.3 million DTRA program running at Porton Down from 2012 to 2016 – Development of common marmoset models for category A/B pathogens and product evaluation in marmosets.

Salisbury Nerve Agent Attack Reveals $70 Million Pentagon Program At Porton Down

Source: Experimental Respiratory Infection of Marmosets (Callithrix jacchus) With Ebola Virus Kikwit, The Journal of Infectious Diseases, Volume 212, 1 October 2015

The experiment’s stated goal was to measure the lethal dose of exposure and time to death meaning that the Ebola virus Kikwit was researched for its potential as a bioweapon. All infected marmoset monkeys died from 6 to 10 days after exposure to the Ebola virus.

The Pentagon also funded studies on the deadly Marburg virus: a $2.6 million project – Experimental respiratory Marburg virus haemorrhagic fever infection in the common marmoset, and another $1.4 million project – Marburg virus model development, which were undertaken at Porton Down in 2017. This virus causes viral hemorrhagic fever and is listed as a Category A Bioterrorism Agent. All infected monkeys died from 8 to 10 days. The aim of the studies was to examine the dose and time to death for animals exposed to aerosolized Marburg virus.


Source: Experimental respiratory Marburg virus haemorrhagic fever infection in the common marmoset (Callithrix jacchus), International Journal of Experimental Pathology

Under another $4.8 million project, funded by DTRA, Porton Down scientists along with the Pentagon contractor Mapp Biopharmaceutical tested Susceptibility and lethality of Western Equine Encephalitis Virus in mice when infected by the aerosol route. Mapp Biopharmaceutical is an American pharmaceutical company, which has developed an Ebola vaccine from the tobacco plant. According to the study, aerosol infection is the likely route of exposure to Western Equine Encephalitis Virus in a biowarfare scenario.

12 Marmoset monkeys were infected with anthrax at Porton Down during an experiment funded by the US Defense Advanced Research Projects Agency (DARPA). The study, Experimental respiratory anthrax infection in the common marmoset (Callithrix jacchus), aimed at determining the lethal dose needed to kill 50% of the animals or the so called LD50 indicator. The value of LD50 for a substance is the dose required to kill half the members of the tested population after a specified test duration. Six of the monkeys died from anthrax from 40 to 140 h.


Source: Experimental respiratory anthrax infection in the common marmoset (Callithrix jacchus), US National Library of medicine
Chemical agent tests

British military scientists were funded by DTRA to perform Chemical Agent system testing as part of a $39.7 million Pentagon program (2012-2017) at Porton Down. Documents prove that the US Department of Defense Agency – DTRA funded animal experiments with chemical agents at the secretive British military lab.

In 2016 Porton Down scientists along with their colleagues from the US Army Medical Research Institute of Chemical Defense published the results of a joint study Acute Gene Expression Profile of Lung Tissue Following Sulfur Mustard Inhalation Exposure in Large Anesthetized Swine. According to the funding information, this work was supported by two contracts with the Defense Threat Reduction Agency (US Department of Defense). During the experiment at Porton Down 16 pigs were exposed to mustard gas for about 10 minutes, at 12 h post exposure the animals were killed (three of them died during the experiment due to complications) and a full post-mortem examination performed in order to determine the lung damage caused by the sulfur mustard inhalation.

Sulfur mustard is a chemical warfare agent that was first used on the battlefield in World War I. It has been classified as a Class 1 human carcinogen, meaning that it can also cause cancer. Mustard agents were regulated under the 1993 Chemical Weapons Convention as substances with no use other than in chemical warfare.

The last use of Sulfur mustard in battle was confirmed in Syria in 2016. According to the BBC, Islamic State (ISIS) jihadists used mustard gas against government forces in Deir-ez-Zor. The same chemical gas was confirmed to have been used by ISIS against Kurds in Northern Iraq. According to The Independent, the Organisation for the Prohibition of Chemical Weapons (OPCW) confirmed that laboratory tests had come back positive for sulfur mustard, after around 35 Kurdish troops fell sick on the battlefield in August 2015.


Iraqi soldiers captured a cache of chemical weapons from ISIS in Qayarah, Iraq, the rockets tested positive for sulfur mustard, October 2016. (Source: Ed Alexander/BLACKOPS Cyber)

According to information obtained from the US Federal contracts registry, Porton Down scientists 5 months ago completed a $ 2 million military program involving chemical gas experiments on animals. This program was funded by the US Department of the Army on behalf of the U.S. Army Medical Research Institute of Chemical Defense (USAMRICD) and was launched in 2008 and further extended in 2012. The work on the program included Phosgene Gas tests. Amongst them – Continued Model Development to Establish Reproducible Phosgene Injury at 24 Hours. According to the program documents, the purpose was to monitor the development of acute lung injury following phosgene exposure. Phosgene gas was used extensively as a chemical weapon, most notably during World War I.
Coincidence: Guinea pigs at Porton Down and at the home of the poisoned ex-spy

Tests using nerve agents VX and VM on guinea pigs were carried out at Poton Down in 2015. The project was funded by the UK Ministry of Defence. Interestingly, ginea pigs were also found at Sergei Skripal’s home in Salisbury, just a few kilometers away from the secretive chemical and biological military lab. A photo of the Skripals’ pets – a cat and guinea pigs, was posted by his daughter Yulia on Facebook.


Sergei Skripal and his daughter Yulia, photos: Facebook

Guinea pigs were found in the house of the poisoned ex-spy in Salisbury, just a few kilometers away from Porton Down, where such guinea pigs were used for nerve agent chemical tests.

In a 2015 report to the UK parliament the UK Ministry of Defence does confirm the use of animals for military chemical and biological experiments. The ministry states: “DSTL is proud to deliver cutting-edge science and technology for the benefit of national defence and security. Part of its work is to provide safe and effective countermeasures against the threat posed by chemical and biological weapons and to enhance the treatment of conventional casualties on the battlefield, which could not currently be achieved without the use of animals”.
Porton Down scientists test chemical gas on London Tube passengers

Chemical gas was released on thousands of unsuspecting commuters during a military experiment on the London Underground, documents reveal. These chemical tests were performed in 2013 by scientist from Porton Down.


Porton Down scientists released chemical gas on the London Underground in 2013.

The UK government never informed the British public of the military experiment on the London Underground. Thousands of people were exposed to chemical gas without their knowledge. Nor did the Ministry of Defence ask for their consent to participate in such military experiments. Information about the project can be obtained from a 2016 US Department of Homeland Security (DHS) document entitled Environmental Assessment of Proposed NYC Subway Tracer Particle and Gas Releases for the Underground Transport Restoration Project.


5 PFTs, SF6 and Urea were released on the London Underground in 2013 in the form of liquid aerosol droplets. Source: US Department of Homeland Security (DHS)

The document provides information about other programs running in the USA and UK from 2005 to 2016. Among them are the London Underground chemical trials. They were conducted by the Defense Science and Technology Laboratory (DSTL), also known as Porton Down.

Information obtained from the UK government contracts registry confirms that Porton Down scientists conducted a study involving access to the London tube under a 3-year contract with the London Underground (2011-2014). The content of the project is not specified though.

According to the contract documents, the London Underground cannot communicate “on these matters with any media representative unless specifically granted permissions to do so. In the event that the Contract becomes classified the Contractor must safeguard information. Before publishing information to the general public, Porton Down may redact any information that would be exempt from disclosure if it was the subject of a request for information under the Freedom of Information Act”.


The London Underground is prohibited from public disclosure of information about the Porton Down project without permission, according to the contract documents. Source: data.gov.uk

The controversial military laboratory was investigated for chemical and biological experiments on humans in the past. Up to 20,000 people took part in various trials from 1949 to 1989. In 2008, the UK Ministry of Defence paid 360 veterans £3 million without admitting liability.


Ronald George Maddison was a twenty-year-old Royal Air Force engineer who died while undergoing tests with sarin at Porton Down in 1953, according to declassified military documents.

Powder dissemination of chemical or biological agents

Presently Porton Down scientists produce and test dissemination of biological and/or chemical agents as they did in the past, documents from the UK government contracts registry reveal. Although the information is redacted, it still raises questions as to why the UK military needs to develop a new technique for dissemination of chemical or biological agents via the inhalational route. A private contractor – Red Scientific Ltd, was awarded a £50,000 contract in 2012 “to explore techniques that could be used to manipulate the flow ability of dry powders, principally to understand the delivery of solid particulate by inhalation, and to apply a variety of innovative powder manipulation techniques to a specific irritant powder (provided by DSTL)”. If the work in 2012/13 proves to be successful there is potential for a second phase to be pursued in 2013/14 examining other powder materials with the same techniques, the contract documents reveal. The project’s stated goal is marked improvement in the efficiency of aerosolisation over current techniques used at DSTL.



DSTL has awarded a private contractor to explore more advanced techniques for powder dissemination of chemical/biological agents. Source: data.gov.uk

DSTL has also tested dissemination techniques in wind tunnels. A private company – NIAB Trading Ltd, was awarded a £12,020 contract to provide facilities and expertise to assist with wind tunnel assessments.

Such experiments involving the release of bacteria were conducted in the UK in the past during the joint UK-US military operation DICE. A declassified US Army document reveals that a series of 24 field trials took place off the coast of Portland and in Lyme Bay in the UK in 1975. Each field trial involved the spraying of massive bacterial aerosols from a converted Land Rover. Although the US and UK joined the UN Conventions on the prohibition of chemical and biological weapons, documents prove that their military programs have never ended.


Porton Down scientists conducted field tests in 1956. The masks on their faces allowed the collection of warfare simulants which had been sprayed from aircraft. Photo credit: Imperial War Museums
US official lied in Brussels about the Pentagon biolaboratories

Robert Kadlec, Assistant Secretary at the US Department of Health, categorically denied the existence of an American bio-weapons program at a seminar on the threat of biological and chemical weapons. The event was organized by the European Parliament on 7th March in Brussels. Asked why the information about the US military bio-laboratories in 25 countries bordering on Russia, China and Iran (the Pentagon’s main rivals) is classified, Kadlec responded: “They are not classified, they are openly available to anyone who wants to look at them.”

(full video of Robert Kadlec’s comment here)


Documents about the Pentagon offshore bio-laboratories prove him wrong though.

According to the 2005 Agreement between the US DoD and the Ministry of Health of Ukraine the Ukrainian government is prohibited from public disclosure of sensitive information about the US program. The Pentagon has been operating 11 biolaboartories in Ukraine.

Porton Down is just one of the Pentagon-funded military laboratories in 25 countries across the world, where the US Army produces and tests man-made viruses, bacteria and toxins in direct violation of the UN convention. These US bio-laboratories are funded by the Defense Threat Reduction Agency (DTRA) under a $ 2.1 billion military program– Cooperative Biological Engagement Program (CBEP), and are located in former Soviet Union countries such as Georgia and Ukraine, the Middle East, South East Asia and Africa.

The Pentagon-funded military facilities are not under the direct control of the host state as the US military and civilian personnel is working under diplomatic cover. The local governments are prohibited from public disclosure of sensitive information about the foreign military program running on their own territory. Without being under the direct control of the host state, these Pentagon bio-laboratories put the health of the local population at risk and must be closed.

This article (Salisbury Nerve Agent Attack Reveals $70 Million Pentagon Program At Porton Down) was originally published on South Front and syndicated by The Event Chronicle.