Author Archive | MarkB

In Which Country Would You Be Happiest?

Every four years, half of the United States loudly threatens to move to the land of socialism and factory hospitals, Canada – the other half to the lands of guns ‘n banks, Switzerland. Is life that much better in one of the Empire’s outlying provinces or is it a case of the grass-is-greener?

The Organization for Economic Cooperation and Development (OECD) may have put that question to rest with a fun and handy, online tool that allows users to rank the importance they place on one of several lifestyle factors: Income, Jobs, Housing, Safety, Community, Civic Engagement, Health, Life Satisfaction, Work-Life Balance, Environment and Education. Using data from the latest OECD statistical surveys, the app returns an ordered ranking of the countries that best fit the user’s selected criteria from among the 34 member states of the OECD.

If you’re a one-issue decider, and reset all option sliders to zero – but “max-out” one category – the top states are:

Jobs: Switzerland
Life Satisfaction: Switzerland
Housing: United States
Income: United States
Community: Iceland
Education: Finland
Environment: Sweden
Civic Engagement: Australia
Health: New Zealand
Safety: Japan
Work-Life Balance: Denmark

In other words, despite comprising 75-percent of the member states of the OECD, the European Union managed only to score 27-percent of the top spots (kudos to Denmark, Sweden and Finland).… Read the rest

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Federal Judge: Courts Rubber-Stamp White House on Security Issues

Federal District Court Judge Royce Lamberth has said what many civil libertarians have long thought. According to Politico

Speaking at a conference for federal employees who process Freedom of Information Act requests, U.S. District Court Judge Royce Lamberth said his fellow jurists usually rubber-stamp agency claims that disclosing information would jeopardize national security.

“It bothers me that judges, in general, are far too deferential to Exemption 1 claims,” Lamberth said, referring the language in FOIA that allows for withholding of information classified pursuant to an executive order. “Most judges give almost blind deference on Exemption 1 claims.”

Judge Lamberth, a graduate of the University of Texas, was appointed to the bench by Ronald Reagan in 1987. He previously served as an Army JAG officer and as a federal prosecutor. His recent decisions have included ordering the release of Richard Nixon’s testimony concerning the Watergate scandal and controversially issuing an injunction to prevent the Obama administration from destroying embryos used in stem cell research.… Read the rest

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Document Dump on Chemtrail Whistleblower and Alex Jones guest, FBI Agent Ted Gunderson

The Southern Poverty Law Center described ex FBI agent Ted Gunderson as having never “heard a conspiracy theory he didn’t believe.” Alex Jones loved the (now deceased) former head of the FBI’s Dallas office, having him as a guest on his show and using Gunderson as a source for many of his website’s articles and conspiracy claims.

Yesterday, the website Parapolitical posted 2,500 pages of federal government files on Gunderson it obtained, most created after the ex-Fed ended his 30 year career with the FBI. They reveal a variety of criminal investigations – ranging from suspected theft to witness tampering – in which Gunderson was a suspect in the early 1980s, while leading his own private detective agency. It was after these various run-ins with the law that Gunderson began making claims of a government conspiracy involving false flag terrorism, chemtrails and even withholding the cure to Down’s Syndrome (obtained from space aliens).… Read the rest

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Dennis Rodman to Barack Obama: “I’m in charge now.”

Declaring that President Obama “can’t do shit,” flamboyant former professional basketball player Dennis Rodman has told TMZ he will personally be taking over negotiations to free Kenneth Bae, the American imprisoned in North Korea.

“Obama? F**k him!” Rodman told a TMZ stringer before announcing he would be returning to the reclusive nation soon for another meeting with National Defense Commission chairman Kim Jong-un. (Rodman had earlier met with Chairman Kim during a February visit to Pyongyang with the Harlem Globetrotters. Kim is reportedly a fan of the Rodman-era Chicago Bulls.)

Rodman decided to take over negotiations for Bae’s release early last week following an open request to him from the Seattle Times. (For his part, Barack Obama has repeatedly told Rodman to back off.)

After Dennis Rodman as President, what would be your dream team administration of washed-up 1990s celebrities? Maybe Dustin Diamond as Secretary of Defense? Jason Priestly as Attorney-General?… Read the rest

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Americans Take to Streets to Demand They Be Indexed in National Biometric Database.

photo courtesy US Social Forum

Thousands of Americans took to the streets on May 1 to demand Congress allow the Department of Homeland Security to establish a national photo database of all 330 million residents.

You didn’t hear? WIRED reports:

Buried in the more than 800 pages of the bipartisan [immigration] legislation is language mandating the creation of the innocuously-named “photo tool,” a massive federal database administered by the Department of Homeland Security and containing names, ages, Social Security numbers and photographs of everyone in the country with a driver’s license or other state-issued photo ID.

For now, the legislation allows the database to be used solely for employment purposes. But historically such limitations don’t last. The Social Security card, for example, was created to track your government retirement benefits. Now you need it to purchase health insurance.

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The Conspiracy Theorist Glossary

300806jfkIf you’ve ever scoffed when someone told you that JFK’s second gunman destroyed the World Trade Center with assistance from reptilian extraterrestrials as part of a plan hatched at Bohemian Grove to corner the gold market before the return of Planet X, you’ve probably found yourself subject to a bevy of indicting catch phrases machine gunned at you so fast your head spun.

To help decode the buzzwords that form the conspiracy theorist lexicon, the Skeptic Project developed a handy glossary. Here are some highlights:

Awake: the opposite of “asleep.” Essentially, the condition of believing in conspiracy theories and not believing (supposedly) any government or “mainstream media” source. CT’ers employ numerous variations on the “asleep”/”awake” concept, such as “I woke up,” “You’re asleep,” “Why did you go back to sleep?”, “When I was asleep I believed…”, “We’re trying to wake people up!”, “A lot of people are waking up,” etc., etc.

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Rand Paul – Drone Hero to Drone Zero?

Barack Obama won acclaim from civil libertarians in 2008 when he pledged to close Guantanamo Bay. Five years later, the prison camp remains open, costing taxpayers $900,000 per-prisoner, per-year.

Rand Paul scored similar praise this year when he challenged Attorney-General Eric Holder on the domestic use of armed drones. Now, the Kentucky senator may be doing a bit of back-peddling himself. In an apparent move to position himself for a 2016 presidential bid, Paul has softened his position on the use of drones over U.S. cities, controversially indicating he’d be okay with drone-fired Hellfire missiles being used to stop convenience store hold-ups, according to Politico. The son of Ron Paul was swept into the Senate with support from civil libertarians of the right-leaning variety but now wants to unshackle himself from that “vocal group” of tantrum-prone “contrarians.”

“Rand is a grassroots champion and has a huge, devoted following that will be with him through thick and thin,” said Benton, who ran Ron Paul’s presidential campaign in 2012 and is managing Senate Minority Leader Mitch McConnell’s reelection campaign.

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Forty-Five Failed Alex Jones Predictions

Bank runs in February 2009. 9/11-scale terror attacks in 2010. 50% of the U.S. population will be killed in a bio-weapons attack in 2009. 16 year-old soldiers will enforce nationwide martial law by 2012. A major terror attack will occur in the U.S. by the end of summer 2009 (oh, and it’s a false flag). The U.S. will go to war with Russia in 2009. Texas stores are being looted and National Guard troops are moving into Austin right this minute (December 31, 1999). The UN will announce the presence of ET intelligence during 2009 to stage a NWO takeover. The U.S. dollar will be devalued by 50% by 2012.

If you’re Alex Jones, you’re used to being wrong. But that doesn’t stop his wild-eyed fans from listening – there’s always another edge-of-your-seat, apocalyptic prediction coming down the pipeline, after all. In this highly entertaining mash-up, Alex Jones Clips runs down 45 of the most wild, failed Alex Jones predictions.… Read the rest

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Why Have Children?

image courtesy Matt Romack

Get married. Buy a house. Have kids. Retire. Die.

Why step three? Is it part of an egotistical drive to preserve one’s DNA? A desire to raise the most exotic pet of all – a human? A need to obtain a trophy to prove you had unprotected sex?

None of those, says a team of Cambridge and Stanford researchers. Instead, Dr. Partha Dasgupta and Dr. Paul Ehrlich posit, it’s part of the age-old question of “keeping up with the Joneses.” Physorg reports on the duo’s study which uses …

… data from several sources to compare population growth rates between people in Africa—where population growth is exploding in some areas—with others where it is not, to show that when people experience peer pressure to have large families and also feel pressure to keep up with the consumption habits of other people where they live, the result can be explosive population growth.

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UFO Disclosure or UFO Circus?

Stephen Bassett’s latest event at the National Press Club has been making headlines recently. The Citizen Hearing on Disclosure is supposed to assemble a gallery of credible UFO witnesses to be interviewed by a distinguished panel of former U.S. congressmen. Having former high-ranking statesmen conduct the inquiry, according to Bassett, will lend credibility to the event, which recently got positive airtime on MSNBC.

“They are essentially conducting themselves as if they were still in Congress. We’re looking for them to be objective and gather information,” Bassett told HuffPost Weird News. “We do not care what their opinion is, it’s not a factor. We simply want them to do the job.”

But who, exactly, are these congressmen? According to website Parapolitical, they are the “nuttiest former U.S. congressmen in history.” Taking a closer look at the biography of the panelists reveals a range of anecdotes that could be amusing, if it weren’t so frightening to imagine these people once held high public office.… Read the rest

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