Cowering Before Capital

If this were debt cancellation and stimulus it would be interesting and the details are not out but I somehow doubt this will be much more than doing what the markets want, the level of debt created by financialisation and neoliberal policies is socially unsustainable unless police states become standard. Nowhere in the article are people mentioned, just banks & governments. The quote ‘inability of the Greek government to live within its means‘ is such a poisonous falsehood, as if financial institutions did not for years bribe key people into endless debt restructuring not because it helped them but because it made money for the banks. This is a merry game played by elites with the costs passed onto those not allowed to participate, yet the besuited oligarchs have the chutzpah to project their irresponsibility onto their victims. This is a rescue package within the rules of the game, better than what could have happened but ultimately it prolongs the scam. Neoliberalism, does not work, financialisation in place of actual productivity does not work (excuse the pun), capitalism unregulated and unconstrained does not work, Adam Smith was actually very clear on that despite what Randroids and laissez faire fundamentalists prefer to read into his works (by current standards he’d be labeled a socialist by corporate media). What we are seeing is a rolling breakdown of  systems of human activity because we are serving the economy not making the economy serve us.

Oh and some spurious wonky shit about elections, is it just me or are you sick of the (very masculine) obsession with numbers and deals and very little mention of the consequences to people of the cuts no one seems to want to think about (is this I suspect because they are all convinced of the neoliberal arguments and wouldn’t know a socialised market if they fell over one). Or am I just stupid for hoping just a tiny bit a coalition and public appetite for reform might stymie the cuts agenda of a lib/lab coalition because they can see the tories waiting to profit off the market fetishised ‘austerity’ measures (nice euphemism for class war and shock doctrine beloved by all those who fully expect not to suffer one iota because of them, until maybe that crime spike means it’s their home invaded and they get beaten the shit out of to give up all their valuables, no really I’m trying to feel sympathy for the self absorbed privileged twats).

What? You didn’t order a rant, well you got one anyway. Try the veal, I’ll be here all week… then I’ll be at http://www.tenpercent.org.uk/

Peace out motherfunkers.

Govt. Can’t Stop Covering Up Torture

It’s interesting this case also involves Moazzam Begg the focus of the recent campaign against Amnesty by Decent types.

The government will attempt today to have a case about torture heard entirely behind closed doors in a move that some lawyers say would extend secrecy to a new area of hearings, overriding ancient principles of English law. This morning a case will come before three appeal judges in London in which seven men are seeking damages against the government for mistreatment during what they say was their “extraordinary rendition” and torture facilitated by the British security services. The men include former Guantánamo Bay detainees Binyam Mohamed and Moazzam Begg. But the government is seeking to have the case held in secret, less than two weeks after the court of appeal ruled that seven paragraphs of secret evidence in the case of Mohamed should be made public.

Lawyers for the men say that if successful, the government’s application would extend closed proceedings into findings of fact in the civil courts for the first time.

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BAE Are Guilty Of Bribery, So What Of Blair Who Pushed Through The Deal?

And closed down the investigation… It’s small beer compared to Iraq but… Al Capone was convicted of tax evasion not murder or racketeering, just saying is all.

The arms giant BAE today agreed to pay out almost £300m in penalties as the company finally admitted guilt over its worldwide conduct in the face of long-running corruption investigations.

For 20 years, the firm had refused to accept any wrongdoing, despite mounting evidence of alleged bribes and kickbacks, much of it uncovered by the Guardian.

But BAE said it would plead guilty to charges of false accounting and making misleading statements in simultaneous settlement deals with the Serious Fraud Office in the UK, and the department of justice in Washington.

The admissions in the US covered BAE’s huge £43bn al-Yamamah fighter plane sales to Saudi Arabia, and smaller deals in the Czech Republic and elsewhere in central Europe.

In the UK, the admissions cover a highly controversial sale of a military radar to poverty-stricken Tanzania, which development secretary Clare Short said at the time “stank” of corruption, but which the then prime minister, Tony Blair, forced through the cabinet.

The Serious Fraud Office said in its announcement that some of the £30m penalty BAE was to hand over in the UK would be “an ex gratia payment for the benefit of the people of Tanzania”.

Another $400m (£257m) would be paid in penalties to the US authorities. BAE will not face international blacklisting from future contracts, because it has only admitted false accounting, not bribery.

MPs admitted to mixed feelings about BAE’s admission of guilt and are still furious that the SFO’s own extensive inquiry into the al-Yamamah deal was shut down in 2006, following pressure from the company, and from Saudi officials who reportedly threatened to withdraw co-operation over security matters. The then attorney general, Lord Goldsmith, cited reasons of national security when he announced the inquiry was being abandoned. Blair said he took full responsibility for the decision.

Corporate State, The F Word

In the midst of two wars and the fight against Al Qaeda, the CIA is offering operatives a chance to peddle their expertise to private companies on the side — a policy that gives financial firms and hedge funds access to the nation’s top-level intelligence talent, POLITICO has learned.

In one case, these active-duty officers moonlighted at a hedge-fund consulting firm that wanted to tap their expertise in “deception detection,” the highly specialized art of telling when executives may be lying based on clues in a conversation.

The never-before-revealed policy comes to light as the CIA and other intelligence agencies are once again under fire for failing to “connect the dots,” this time in the Christmas Day bombing plot on Northwest Flight 253.

But sources familiar with the CIA’s moonlighting policy defend it as a vital tool to prevent brain-drain at Langley, which has seen an exodus of highly trained, badly needed intelligence officers to the private sector, where they can easily double or even triple their government salaries. The policy gives agents a chance to earn more while still staying on the government payroll.

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Neocon Rory Stewart Was An MI6 Operative

Rory Stewart currently vying for selection as a Tory candidate, as Craig Murray reveals

One person I would not vote for is the crusading neo-Conservative Rory Stewart. It is particularly annoying that he is constantly referred to as a former diplomat. Stewart was an MI6 officer and not a member of the FCO.

Three years ago I received a message from the FCO asking me not to mention this as, at that time, Stewart was still very active for MI6 in Afghanistan and his life could have been endangered. I agreed, and even removed a reference from my blog. However now that he is safely and lucratively ensconsed at Harvard, I see no reason to conceal the truth. I is necessary to reveal this so that people can correctly evaluate his political pronouncements on Iraq and Afghanistan, and his motives in making them.

Word.

EU Negotiating With Honduran Coup Regime

Caroline Lucas via Socialist Unity

The military coup which took place in Honduras on 28 June this year was 2009’s first such Central American coup. Following the installation of a de facto government, the EU firmly condemned the and made it clear that all negotiations for a preferential trade pact were to be suspended until the return of the ousted President Zelaya.

I was therefore shocked to learn that the COLAT (Committee on Latin America of the EU Council) has now decided to include Honduras in the negotiations on a future Association Agreement. Along with Jean Lambert and fellow members of the Greens/EFA group, I have signed an open letter to the European Council demanding that these negotiations are not resumed.

If the General Affairs Council (GAERC) confirms the COLAT decision, it would send out completely the wrong signal; basically, that we are happy to normalise relations with an antidemocratic military-imposed government, despite the fact that no Latin American country has recognised the Honduras coup administration, with the US also freezing its budgetary and military aid.

Until democratic order under the Honduran Constitution is reinstalled, the Greens want to suspend all economic, political and diplomatic relations with the de facto government of Honduras.

Several international human rights organisations working in Honduras have reported that the human rights situation has deteriorated during recent weeks, with the de facto government refusing to accept any of President Arias’ mediation proposals. If the EU decides to return to the negotiation table with the de facto government under these circumstances, the message is that the EU does not care about human rights and democracy, for the sake of business interests in the region.

You can find your MEP’s here and contact them.

CDS- Burning Down The House

HARRY Markopolos — the whistleblower on Bernie Madoff who proved to be much smarter than the SEC — says there are evildoers out there who will make the Ponzi scum “look like small-time.” Markopolos gave a speech to 400 of the faithful at the Greek Orthodox Church in Southampton and predicted major scandals will soon be revealed about the unregulated, $600 trillion, credit-default swap market. “To put it in simple terms, it is like buying fire insurance policies from five different insurance companies on your neighbor’s house and then burning down the house,” he said.

Somewhat stating the obvious init? But anyways you have to love corporate media, yes he was ‘smarter’ than the SEC, not in any way were the SEC colluding in the scams, God forbid! And the approved hatred of Madoff (‘scum’) is always interesting, hoping the vehemence for an exposed scapegoat will deter further scrutiny of the casino. Even though they know the whole barrel is rotten they dream of the booming good life of denial, where only a few bad apples were the exception that proved the rule, of capital.

Rotten Island

It’s official, our council is rubbish!

A watchdog wants the Welsh Assembly Government to step in urgently to bring in a major shake-up at a council. The Auditor General said Anglesey council has “serious persistent problems” which affect its working. “Personality politics” based on mistrust and suspicion were partly to blame, while problems existed with both officials and political arrangements. The council said it accepts the findings of the report and all seven recommendations for improvement.

“Serious, persistent problems at the Isle of Anglesey council urgently need addressing now if it is to restore its reputation, win back public trust and set a positive course for the future,” said Auditor General, Jeremy Colman. He said the council’s “history” meant he was convinced the changes that were needed would not happen unless there was outside input. “That is why I am calling on assembly government ministers to intervene and to provide the necessary external support and challenge that Anglesey council needs to help place it onto a firmer, more successful, footing,” he said.

In his report Mr Colman said even though there are good features in performance of many services there are internal issues. These include weak self-regulation, inappropriate behaviour and conflict. The report said all these issues had been left largely unaddressed since the council was established in 1996 – despite a number of previous external reviews. Mr Colman goes on to say there is a history of “personality politics” based around mistrust, suspicion and personal animosity.

This is not news to anyone who lives here, but maybe… maybe the self interested cabal who use our money to pursue their and developer’s interest will finally be exposed. Central government is cutting spending so we need councillors fighting for us.

Capitalist’s Spite

They hate him because he robbed them, not us- which is the approved function. A sacrifice to the enraged egos of the greedy. Thieves robbed taking the moral high ground- how dare our impunity to commit crime actually rebound on us!

Guilty Evasions

Tony Blair urged Gordon Brown to hold the independent inquiry into the Iraq war in secret because he feared that he would be subjected to a “show trial” if it were opened to the public, the Observer can reveal.

Blair is believed to have been alarmed by the prospect that he might be asked to give evidence in public and under oath about the use of intelligence and about his numerous private discussions with US President George Bush at which the two leaders laid plans for war.

Why Even Fucking Bother, Gordon?

And Chilcot, for fuck’s sake. Why not just have it chaired by Whitey McWhitewash. In a concrete box. At the bottom of the ocean. At least it will waste less of our money on further obscuring New Labour’s war crimes that way. Of course I know why you’re bothering, it is to rewrite history, sort of the British equivalent of the GW Bush Presidential library but with less literary merit (Chilcot will find a way to make that possible!). Oh fuck off Gordon, are you actually on the Elect Cameron committee? Go on, you are aren’t you? Can’t wait to see a NL cheerleader gold plate this steaming pile of shite. 

Gordon Brown, the British prime minister, has been accused of staging a cover-up after he ruled that an inquiry into the UK’s involvement in the US-led invasion of Iraq would be held in private. He also said it would would take a year to complete – taking it beyond the date the prime minister must hold a general election.

The investigation will be chaired by Sir John Chilcot, 70, a former permanent under-secretary of state at the Northern Ireland Office. Chilcot has been chairman of Britain’s Police Federation since 2001 and sat on the Butler inquiry, which reported into the intelligence which the UK government had about Iraq and weapons of mass destruction.

Brown, who cited national security issue for not holding the investigation in public, said: “The primary objective of the committee will be to identify lessons learned.

“The committee will not set out to apportion blame or consider issues of civil or criminal liability.

“It [the inquiry] will consider the period from summer 2001 before military operations began in March 2003 and our subsequent involvement in Iraq right until the end of July this year.”

UK Quietly Fiddles Agreement With Cayman Tax Haven

Everyone should read Richard Murphy!

Signed today – and slipped out on HMRC’s web site without a press release (I wonder why?) is a double tax agreement (yes, I mean that – a DTA, not a Tax Information Exchange Agreement) with the Cayman islands.

<…>

The real question is – who asked for the downgrade on this point – the UK or Cayman? The former will have at least as many problems as the latter in complying. Either way this is a massive embarrassment to the UK – and no way for Gordon Brown to pursue his campaign on tax havens.

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A Statement On My Absolute Innocence

As you may know today I have paid $15.5m to settle out of court with some people who allege I am a murdering bastard. Clearly I have given them the money because I am entirely innocent. If you have not in any way ever met me or been impacted by my actions and would like several million dollars please just let me know and I will send you the cash. Because of course paying several million dollars to people in no way means I am avoiding a court case where it will be shown I conspired with governments to have people murdered just in order to become even richer.

Thank you.

Report on Kingsnorth Policing Buried

Chris Ames, Index on Censorship:- The Home Office and Kent Police have buried a report on the policing of last summer’s climate camp at Kingsnorth power station, provoking suspicions that it was critical of the controversial police tactics at the protest.

 During the protest last August, activists complained of aggressive policing, including violence against peaceful protestors, excessive use of stop and search powers, arbitrary arrests and mass confiscation of personal property. A number of MPs called for an inquiry.

 Last December, policing minister Vernon Coaker told MPs that the National Policing Improvement Agency (NPIA) was “considering the lessons to be learned” from Kingsnorth. He said he would discuss its report with the Association of Chief Police Officers (ACPO) and would then “be happy to share those conclusions” with Liberal Democrat Shadow Justice Secretary David Howarth.

But the report has been shelved, apparently because Kent Police did not like its findings, despite sending it back to be revised. Soon after receiving a “final” version, Chief Constable Michael Fuller commissioned a second review, on the grounds that the NPIA report “was not an evaluation of the operation overall or whether or not strategic and tactical objectives were achieved”.

 The force also refused to hand the report to the Independent Police Complaints Commission (IPCC). Kent Police have declined to say what the report’s findings were, in spite of a claim that its policy “has always been to be open and transparent in everything we do”.

The Home Office is now presenting the second review, which is being carried out by an assistant chief constable of South Yorkshire Police, as a “report by the NPIA”, even though both the NPIA and South Yorkshire Police have stated that the NPIA are not involved.

[More]

& Chris Ames in the Guardian, (ht2 Indymedia)

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Welsh Riding

Thirteen former and current police officers have appeared in court charged over the investigation into the murder of Cardiff prostitute Lynette White. They appeared at the City of Westminster Magistrates’ Court in London accused of conspiring to pervert the course of justice.Ms White, 20, was found stabbed to death on Valentine’s Day, 1988.

The Lynette White murder case became one of Britain’s most notorious miscarriages of justice and in 1992 the convictions of three jailed men, Stephen Miller, Yusef Abdullahi and Tony Paris, were quashed and they were freed. Two other men – cousins Ronnie and John Actie – were also charged with murder along with Mr Miller, Mr Abdullahi and Mr Paris, but they were acquitted at the trial at Swansea Crown Court in 1990.

In 2003, Jeffrey Gafoor, a client of Ms White admitted her murder in 2003. The security guard from Llanharan, near Bridgend was sentenced to life imprisonment.

…but it’s just a few rotten apples, not for example indicative of institutional dysfunction.

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