Wednesday, July 31, 2013

Global Power Project, Part 8: Banking on Influence with Wells Fargo

By Andrew Gavin Marshall,
Part 1: Exposing the Transnational Capitalist Class
Part 2: Identifying the Institutions of Control
Part 3: The Influence of Individuals and Family Dynasties
Part 4: Banking on Influence with JPMorgan Chase
Part 5: Banking on Influence With Goldman Sachs
Part 6: Banking on Influence With Bank of America
Part 7: Banking on Influence with Citigroup
Just recently, in late July, Wells Fargo surpassed the Industrial and Commercial Bank of China (ICBC) as the world’s largest bank by market capitalization. This followed Wells Fargo reporting a 19% increase in profits over the second quarter as the bank has been busy consolidating the housing market while other big banks have retreated from it. Wells Fargo had amassed a share of almost 40% of the U.S. mortgage market by early 2013.
Now, let’s put this in context with the company’s other recent activities.
Wells Fargo, which acquired Wachovia in the wake of the financial crisis, controlled roughly 28.8% of all home loans issued across the United States in 2012, compared to 11.2% of the market it controlled in 2007, just before the housing implosion. In 2012, the bank paid a $175 million settlement following revelations that “mortgage brokers working with Wells Fargo had charged higher fees and rates to more than 30,000 minority borrowers across the country than they had to white borrowers who posed the same credit risk.”
In the settlement, the world’s largest bank “admitted no wrongdoing,” noting in a press release that the bank simply wanted “to avoid a long and costly legal fight.” Then, in 2013, Wells Fargo agreed to a further $42 million settlement because “it neglected the maintenance and marketing of foreclosed homes in black and Latino neighborhoods across the country.” Again, of course, the bank admitted no wrongdoing.
But that’s just the tip of things. A civil mortgage fraud suit was filed against Wells Fargo in late 2012 for hundreds of millions of dollars in damages over “reckless mortgage loans” made by the bank for over a decade in the lead-up to the financial crisis. Even in light of the massive settlement in 2012 over mortgage fraud, which simultaneously forced big banks to adhere to new rules regarding the mortgage market, it was found that both Bank of America and Wells Fargo had “flagrantly violated those obligations,” increasing foreclosure risks for Americans. Also, this past May, Wells Fargo agreed to pay a $105 million settlement in a fraud case brought by Orange County, which also implicated Bank of New York Mellon to the tune of a $114 million settlement.
It gets better. In 2010, Wachovia – which was purchased by Wells Fargo in 2008 – paid a settlement of $160 million for laundering over $100 million in drug money for Mexican and Colombian drug cartels. Further, the bank admitted that it had failed to “apply the proper anti-laundering strictures” regarding the bank’s handling of $378.4 billion in currency exchanges with Mexico between 2004 and 2007. A federal prosecutor commented, “Wachovia’s blatant disregard for our banking laws gave international cocaine cartels a virtual carte blanche to finance their operations,” as tens of thousands of Mexicans were killed in an exponentially violent drug war.
Thus, in the aftermath of the financial crisis, not only did the big banks receive sprawling government bailouts (Wells Fargo got $25 billion from the U.S. government), but according to the UN, proceeds pouring in from the global drug trade ultimately helped keep Wells Fargo and others afloat as “the only liquid investment capital” available to them during the crisis. But Wells Fargo didn’t just profit from laundering money for major drug cartels — it also profited, and continues to profit, at the other end of the drug war as a major investor in the prison-industrial complex, specifically with heavy investments in the GEO Group, the second largest private prison company in the United States.
As the largest bank in the world, Wells Fargo is deeply connected with some of the most powerful U.S. and international institutions to ensure that no matter how many crimes it commits — fraud, illegal foreclosures, money laundering, you name it — it will continue to consolidate markets, grow larger and presumably get away with its criminal activities for relatively small fines. The Global Power Project examined a total of 26 individuals on the executive committee and board of directors at Wells Fargo to assess their institutional affiliations. The most represented institutions (with three individual affiliations each) are the Council on Foreign Relations and PricewaterhouseCoopers (PwC), followed by Harvard, Citigroup, Chevron, the Financial Services Roundtable and Target Corporation (with two individual affiliations each).
Meet the Elites
Elaine L. Chao, who sits on the board of Wells Fargo, was formerly U.S. Secretary of Labor in the George W. Bush administration, from 2001 to 2009. She was a Distinguished Fellow of the Heritage Foundation from 1996 to 2001 and has resumed that position since 2009. She was also the President and CEO of the United Way of America from 1992 to 1996, Director of the Peace Corps from 1991 to 1992, and Deputy Secretary of the U.S. Department of Transportation from 1989 to 1991. Chao is a member of the board of directors of Dole Food Company, News Corporation, Protective Life Corporation, the Institute of Politics of Harvard Kennedy School of Government, and a member of Harvard Business School Board of Dean’s Advisors, as well as a member of the Council on Foreign Relations.
John S. Chen, also on the board of Wells Fargo, is a senior adviser to Silver Lake Partners, a director of the Walt Disney Company, a member of the Board of Overseers Emeriti of the Watson Institute for International Studies at Brown University, a former member of the President’s Export Council, a member of the board of trustees of the Brookings Institution, chairman of the U.S.-China Policy Advisory Roundtable at the Center for Strategic and International Studies (CSIS), and a member of the Council on Foreign Relations.
Wells Fargo board member Enrique Hernandez, Jr. is the president and CEO of Inter-Con Security Systems, and sits on the boards of Chevron, Nordstrom, McDonald’s Corporation, and the board of trustees of the University of Notre Dame. He is a member of the Harvard College Visiting and Harvard University Resources Committees and is a member of the John Randolph Haynes and Dora Haynes Foundation.
Federico F. Peña, on the Wells Fargo board, was a U.S. Secretary of Transportation and U.S. Secretary of Energy during the Clinton administration, and previously a member of the Colorado House of Representatives and a former mayor of Denver. More recently, he has been a senior adviser to Vestar Capital Partners, on the board of Sonic Corporation and a member of the Diversity Advisory Board of Toyota North America. A former national board member of the Obama-Biden Transition Team, Peña is also former National Co-Chair of Obama For America and currently a member of the Council on Foreign Relations.
John G. Stumpf, the president and CEO of Wells Fargo, is a member of the board of directors of the Financial Services Forum and chairman of the board of the Financial Services Roundtable, and is also on the boards of Target Corporation, Chevron, and on the board of trustees of the San Francisco Museum of Modern Art.
For a mega-money laundering, drug war profiteering, prison-industry enlarging global bank like Wells Fargo, the evidence is obvious: it helps to have affiliations with individuals and institutions that make up the U.S. and increasingly the international power elite. Like the other big banks, Wells Fargo is too big to fail, too big to jail, too criminal to control — and too tumorous to tolerate.
Andrew Gavin Marshall is a 26-year old researcher and writer based in Montreal, Canada. He is Project Manager of The People’s Book Project, chair of the Geopolitics Division of The Hampton Institute, research director for‘s Global Power Project, and hosts a weekly podcast show with BoilingFrogsPost.

NSA Spying Directly Harms Internet Companies, Silicon Valley, California … And the Entire U.S. Economy

Mass Surveillance Is “Killing Our Most Productive Golden Goose”

Mass surveillance by the NSA may directly harm the bottom of line of Internet companies, Silicon Valley, California … and the entire national economy.
Money News points out:
The company whose shares you own may be lying to you — while Uncle Sam looks the other way.
Let’s step through this. I think you will see the problem.
Fact 1: U.S. financial markets are the envy of the world because we have fair disclosure requirements, accounting standards and impartial courts. This is the foundation of shareholder value. The company may lose money, but they at least told you the truth.
Fact 2: We now know multiple public companies, including Microsoft (MSFT), Google (GOOG), Facebook (FB) and other, gave their user information to NSA. Forget the privacy implications for a minute. Assume for the sake of argument that everything complies with U.S. law. Even if true, the businesses may still be at risk.
Fact 3: All these companies operate globally. They get revenue from China, Japan, Russia, Germany, France and everywhere else. Did those governments consent to have their citizens monitored by the NSA? I think we can safely say no.
Politicians in Europe are especially outraged. Citizens are angry with the United States and losing faith in American brand names. Foreign companies are already using their non-American status as a competitive advantage. Some plan to redesign networks specifically to bypass U.S. companies.
By yielding to the NSA, U.S. companies likely broke laws elsewhere. They could face penalties and lose significant revenue. Right or wrong, their decisions could well have damaged the business.
Securities lawyers call this “materially adverse information” and companies are required to disclose it. But they are not. Only chief executives and a handful of technical people know when companies cooperate with the NSA. If the CEO can’t even tell his own board members he has placed the company at risk, you can bet it won’t be in the annual report.
The government also gives some executives immunity documents, according to Bloomberg. Immunity is unnecessary unless someone thinks they are breaking the law. So apparently, the regulators who ostensibly protect the public are actively helping the violators.
This is a new and different investment landscape. Public companies are hiding important facts that place their investors at risk. If you somehow find out, you will have no recourse because regulators gave the offender a “get out of jail free” card. The regulatory structure that theoretically protects you knowingly facilitates deception that may hurt you, and then silences any witnesses.
This strikes to the very heart of the U.S. financial system. Our markets have lost any legitimate claim to “full and fair disclosure.” Every prospectus, quarterly report and news release now includes an unwritten NSA asterisk. Whenever a CEO speaks, we must assume his fingers are crossed.
Every individual investor or money manager now has a new risk factor to consider. Every disclosure by every company is in doubt. The rule of law that gave us the most-trusted markets in the world may be just an illusion.
In a subsequent article, Money News wrote:
Executives at publicly traded companies are lying to shareholders and probably their own boards of directors. They are exposing your investments to real, material, hard-dollar losses and not telling you.
The government that allegedly protects you, Mr. Small Investor, knows all this and actually encourages more of it.
Who lies? Ah, there’s the problem. We don’t know. Some people high in the government know. The CEOs themselves and a few of their tech people know. You and I don’t get to know. We just provide the money.
Since we don’t know which CEOs are government-approved liars, the prudent course is to assume all CEOs are government-approved liars. We can no longer give anyone the benefit of the doubt.
If you are a money manager with a fiduciary responsibility to your investors, you are hereby on notice. A CEO may sign those Securities and Exchange Commission filings where you get corporate information with his fingers crossed. Your clients pay you to know the facts and make good decisions. You’re losing that ability.
For example, consider a certain U.S. telecommunications giant with worldwide operations. It connects American businesses with customers everywhere. Fast-growing emerging markets like Brazil are very important to its future growth.
Thanks to data-sharing agreements with various phone providers in Brazil, this company has deep access to local phone calls. One day someone from NSA calls up the CEO and asks to tap into that stream. He says OK, tells his engineers to do it and moves on.
A few years later, Edward Snowden informs Brazilian media that U.S. intelligence is capturing these data. They tell the Brazilian public. It is not happy. Nor are its politicians, who are already on edge for entirely unrelated reasons.
What would you say are this company’s prospects for future business in Brazil? Your choices are “slim” and “none.” They won’t be the only ones hurt. If the U.S. government won’t identify which American company cheated its Brazilian partners, Brazil will just blame all of them. The company can kiss those growth plans good-bye.
This isn’t a fantasy. It is happening right now. The legality of cooperating with the NSA within the United States is irrelevant. Immunity letters in the United States do not protect the company from liability elsewhere.
Shouldn’t shareholders get to know when their company’s CEO takes these risks? Shouldn’t the directors who hire the CEO have a say in the matter? Yes, they should. We now know that they don’t.
The trust that forms the bedrock under U.S. financial markets is crumbling. [A theme we frequently explore. ] If we cannot believe CEOs when they swear to tell the truth, if companies can hide material risks, if boards cannot know what the executives they hire are actually doing, any pretense of “fair markets” is gone.
When nothing is private, people and businesses soon cease to trust each other. Without trust, modern financial markets cannot function properly.
If U.S. disclosure standards are no better than those in the third world, then every domestic stock is overvalued. Our “rule of law” premium is gone.
This means a change for stock valuations — and it won’t be bullish.
CNN reports:
Officials throughout Europe, most notably French President Francois Hollande, said that NSA spying threatens trade talks.
For the Internet companies named in reports on NSA surveillance, their bottom line is at risk because European markets are crucial for them. It is too early assess the impact on them, but the stakes are clearly huge. For example, Facebook has about 261 million active monthly European users, compared with about 195 million in the U.S. and Canada, and 22% of Apple’s net income came from Europe in the first quarter of 2013.
In June 2011, Microsoft admitted that the United States could bypass EU privacy regulations to get vast amounts of cloud data from their European customers. Six months later, BAE Systems, based in the United Kingdom, stopped using the company’s cloud services because of this issue.
The NSA scandal has brought tensions over spying to a boil. German prosecutors may open a criminal investigation into NSA spying. On July 3, Germany’s interior minister said that people should stop using companies like Google and Facebook if they fear the U.S. is intercepting their data. On July 4, the European Parliament condemned spying on Europeans and ordered an investigation into mass surveillance. The same day, Neelie Kroes, the EU’s chief telecom and Internet official, warned of “multi-billion euro consequences for American companies” because of U.S. spying in the cloud.
Transparency is an important first step. Its absence only exacerbates a trust deficit that companies already had in Europe. And trust is crucial. Google’s chief legal officer recognized this on June 19 when he said, “Our business depends on the trust of our users,” during a Web chat about the NSA scandal. Some companies have been aggressive in trying to disclose more, and others have not. But unless the U.S. government loosens strictures and allows greater disclosure, all U.S. companies are likely to suffer the backlash.
The Obama administration needs to recognize and mitigate the serious economic risks of spying while trying to rebuild its credibility on Internet freedom. The July 9 hearing of the Privacy and Civil Liberties Oversight Board is a start, but much more is needed. More disclosure about the surveillance programs, more oversight, better laws, and a process to work with allied governments to increase privacy protections would be a start.
The European customers of Internet companies are not all al Qaeda or criminals, but that is essentially how U.S. surveillance efforts treat them. If this isn’t fixed, this may be the beginning of a very costly battle pitting U.S. surveillance against European business, trade, and human rights.
The Atlantic notes:
Most communications flow over the Internet and a very large percentage of key Internet infrastructure is in the United States. Thus, foreigners’ communications are much more likely to pass through U.S. facilities even when no U.S. person is a party to a particular message. Think about a foreigner using Gmail, or Facebook, or Twitter — billions of these communications originate elsewhere in the world but pass through, and are stored on, servers located in the U.S.
Foreigners … comprise a growing majority of any global company’s customers.
From the perspective of many foreign individuals and governments, global Internet companies headquartered in the U.S. are a security and privacy risk. And that means foreign governments offended by U.S. snooping are already looking for ways to make sure their citizens’ data never reaches the U.S. without privacy concessions. We can see the beginnings of this effort in the statement by the vice president of the European Commission, Viviane Reding, who called in her June 20 op-ed in the New York Times for new EU data protection rules to “ensure that E.U. citizens’ data are transferred to non-European law enforcement authorities only in situations that are well defined, exceptional and subject to judicial review.” While we cheer these limits on government access, the spying scandal also puts the U.S. government and American companies at a disadvantage in ongoing discussions with the EU about upcoming changes to its law enforcement and consumer-privacy-focused data directives, negotiations critical to the Internet industry’s ongoing operations in Europe.
Even more troubling, some European activists are calling for data-storage rules to thwart the U.S. government’s surveillance advantage. The best way to keep the American government from snooping is to have foreigners’ data stored locally so that local governments – and not U.S. spy agencies — get to say when and how that data may be used. And that means nations will force U.S.-based Internet giants like Google, Facebook, and Twitter, to store their user data in-country, or will redirect users to domestic businesses that are not so easily bent to the American government’s wishes.
So the first unintended consequence of mass NSA surveillance may be to diminish the power and profitability of the U.S. Internet economy. America invented the Internet, and our Internet companies are dominant around the world. The U.S. government, in its rush to spy on everybody, may end up killing our most productive golden goose.
(Internet companies comprise the most vibrant sector of our economy.)
San Diego Union-Tribune writes:
California and its businesses have a problem. It’s called the National Security Agency.
The problem for California is not that the feds are collecting all of our communications. It is that the feds are (totally unapologetically) doing the same to foreigners, especially in communications with the U.S. California depends for its livelihood on people overseas — as customers, trade partners, as sources of talent. Our leading industries — shipping, tourism, technology, and entertainment — could not survive, much less prosper, without the trust and goodwill of foreigners. We are home to two of the world’s busiest container ports, and we are a leading exporter of engineering, architectural, design, financial, insurance, legal, and educational services. All of our signature companies — Apple, Google, Facebook, Oracle, Intel, Hewlett-Packard, Chevron, Disney — rely on sales and growth overseas. And our families and workplaces are full of foreigners; more than one in four of us were born abroad, and more than 50 countries have diaspora populations in California of more than 10,000.
News that our government is collecting our foreign friends’ phone records, emails, video chats, online conversations, photos, and even stored data, tarnishes the California and American brands.
Will tourists balk at visiting us because they fear U.S. monitoring? Will overseas business owners think twice about trading with us because they fear that their communications might be intercepted and used for commercial gain by American competitors? Most chilling of all: Will foreigners stop using the products and services of California technology and media companies — Facebook, Google, Skype, and Apple among them — that have been accomplices (they say unwillingly) to the federal surveillance?
The answer to that last question: Yes. It’s already happening. Asian governments and businesses are now moving their employees and systems off Google’s Gmail and other U.S.-based systems, according to Asian news reports. German prosecutors are investigating some of the American surveillance. The issue is becoming a stumbling block in negotiations with the European Union over a new trade agreement. Technology experts are warning of a big loss of foreign business.
John Dvorak, the columnist, wrote recently, “Our companies have billions and billions of dollars in overseas sales and none of the American companies can guarantee security from American spies. Does anyone but me think this is a problem for commerce?”
It doesn’t help when our own U.S. Sen. Dianne Feinstein is backing the surveillance without acknowledgment of the huge potential costs to her state.
It’s time for her and House Minority Leader Nancy Pelosi, who has been nearly as tone-deaf on this issue, to be forcefully reminded that protecting California industry, and the culture of openness and trust that is so vital to it, is at least as important as protecting massive government data-mining. Such reminders should take the force not merely of public statements but of law.
California has a robust history of going its own way — on vehicle standards, energy efficiency, immigration, marijuana. Now is the time for another departure — this one on the privacy of communications.
We need laws, perhaps even a state constitutional amendment, to make plain that California considers the personal data and communications of all people, be they American or foreign, to be private and worthy of protection.
And see this.
The bigger picture is that a country’s economic health is correlated with a strong rule of law more than any other factor.
Yet America has rapidly fallen into a state of lawlessness, where fundamental rights – such as protection against mass spying by the government – have been jettisoned.
The government is spying on just about everything we do.  Even the government’s attempted denials of this fact confirm it.

Arkansas School District Arms Teachers Because Hiding and Locking the Doors “Is Not a Plan”

Arkansas School District Arms Teachers Because Hiding and Locking the Doors “Is Not a Plan”

The Three Amigos of Racial Discord

The Three Amigos of Racial Discord

Rosneft – The new star of Russian energy

Source: TurkWeek
In Energy Strategy-2030 of Russia, enacted at the end of 2009, it was stated that Moscow would put emphasis on the Asia-Pacific region in its energy exports in the coming years. Petrol and petroleum exports going to this region were targeted to be raised from 6% to 22-25% of total exports, and currently non-existing natural gas export to this region to 19-20% scale of total natural gas export. This Asia-Pacific opening is part of Moscow’s strategy to increase national revenues while promoting economic development in East Siberia and the Russia Far East, and, as well as to stem these regions’ chronic emigration problem. Also, increasing negotiating margin in its economic cooperation with EU by operating new oil and gas pipelines to the East also constitutes an important column of this strategy.
Rosneft, Russia’s newest energy giant, is a key pillar of this initiative. As one of Putin’s favoured firms, Rosneft owes a great deal of its success to Kremlin’s state-centred energy strategy — itself a part of a larger strategy to re-establish Russia as a global power. In that context, efforts to develop the company seem to have gained pace over the past years, and Russia’s currently rank, first with its 12.7 share in world oil production as of 2012, would likely to stay same, at least in short term.
Monopoly in oil, rival in gas…
First of all, Rosneft, winning the licenses for the petroleum reserves at Vankor, Verhne-Chonskoe and Yurubchenko-Tokhomskoe, is to expand petroleum reserves in Eastern Siberia — close to the Asia-Pacific region. At the end of May, Rosneft secured operating rights in the Albanovsky and Varneksky regions of the Barents Basin, competing in this area with Gazprom. Energy reserves in the Barents Basin include 2.2 billion tons of crude petroleum and 1.2 trillion cubic meters of natural gas. Secondly, Rosneft is also looking to vary the cooperation it undertakes with international energy companies. The company is interested in prospecting for new reserves and technology transfers. It has signed new North Pole exploration agreements with American Exxon Mobil, petroleum extraction contracts in the Sea of Ohotsky with Japanese Inpex, and agreements with the Chinese State Petroleum Company (CNPC) on petroleum exporting and energy cooperation in several different areas of Russia. Under an agreement signed in 2009, Rosneft is annually exporting 15 million tons of petroleum to China through the Eastern Siberia-Pacific Ocean pipeline. This volume is anticipated to rise to 50 million tons over the next three to five years as a result of the expansion of the existing pipelines, new ones coming online, and more active use of ports such as Kozmino.
Russian oil export and production by year (million tonnes)
Source: This table is drawn by compiling the data from Russian Ministry of Energy and Central Bank statistics.
Thirdly, along with its efforts to clinch dominance in the petroleum production and export market, Rosneft is simultaneously trying to get command of the natural gas industry, enjoying strong support from the Kremlin. Last March, Rosneft bought Russia’s second largest petroleum exporter, TNK-BP, at a price of $44.4 billion dollars. It is now making plans to buy the remaining shares of Itera, the country’s third largest natural gas producer, after having taken a 51% stake in it in 2012. Its market share in petrol has now risen to 40% and the company plans to produce 210 to 215 million tons of petroleum and 50 billion cubic meters of natural gas in 2013. Apart from becoming a hegemonic power in petroleum production, Rosneft would like to have a monopoly in petroleum exports along the lines of Gazprom’s monopoly in natural gas exports. Rosneft is currently engaged in talks with the government on this matter. Company officials say that for the moment being one of the players in the natural gas sector is enough, but that it aims to have a 20% share of the domestic natural gas market by boosting its output to 100 billion cubic meters annually by 2020.
Shares of the Oil Export and Production Companies in Russia in 2012
Export    Production
Source: Tables are drawn by compiling the data from Russian Ministry of Energy statistics.
In addition to this, the Russian Ministry of Energy is trying to raise the share of liquefied natural gas (LNG) exports from the current level of around 7% to 15% of Russia’s total natural gas exports by 2020. The ministry’s perception is that Gazprom — which exported only a total of 11 billion cubic meters of LNG between the years of 2005 and 2012 — has not done enough in this area. So it is behind Rosneft’s entering the LNG market. During its talks with Ministry and Kremlin authorities aimed at ending Gazprom’s monopoly in LNG exports, Rosneft is also determining how it can be active in eastern markets, making plans to open with Exxon Mobil in Eastern Siberia an LNG production plant, and conducting feasibility studies on shale gas production. Gazprom officials are not pleased with Rosneft’s ambitious entrance into the natural gas market. But the Kremlin is ensuring that Rosneft will not get in the way of Gazprom’s activities and is currently helping the two companies establish their positions in a competitive environment.
The Sechin Factor
Igor Sechin, Rosneft’s chairman, has played a major role in the company’s recent rise. Sechin was identified by Time magazine as the “oil titan” in its list of the 100 most influential people in the world in 2013. He was the only Russian included in the list. In the past, Sechin worked for the KGB, the Soviet Union’s intelligence service. His close friendship with President Putin led to his becoming deputy chief of the Kremlin Presidential Administration in the early 2000’s. Early in 2004, Putin appointed Sechin to the board of the state company Rosneft, at that time only the sixth largest petroleum company in Russia. The move was part of Putin’s bid to consolidate state power over the energy sector. When Sechin was appointed as the chairman of the Rosneft’s board of directors, he maintained his powerful position within the president’s administration. At this time, Yukos, then the largest petroleum company in Russia was having its assets transferred to Rosneft, a process which continued until 2007. And Sechin was one of the main actors in the Kremlin’s energy policy in this process.
Between 2008 and 2012, Sechin served as a deputy prime minister during Vladimir Putin’s premiership. He worked as Putin’s assistant on energy and industry matters. As such, his function was to make Rosneft’s policy expansion easier. When Putin returned to the Kremlin for his third term in office, Sechin became chairman of Rosneft.
Sechin is largely responsible for Rosneft’s rise to what Forbes magazine described as Russia’s second largest company. Only Gazprom (17th worldwide) edged out Rosneft (59th) within Russia. In 2012, Rosneft’s net profits rose sharply by 7.2% over the previous year, to reach $11.2 billion. In Ria Novosti’s ranking of Russia’s 100 largest companies, according to capital, Rosneft rose by 26.9% (i.e. $95.2 billion) to take second place after Gazprom. Sechin’s policies have been an important factor in the company’s surging growth, including its acquisition of the biggest share of the world’s petroleum reserves.
To sum up, energy politics and “pipeline diplomacy” which aimed Russia to regain its “global power” position in international arena seem to keep their vital importance still for long as key instruments of Kremlin’s foreign policy. During 2000’s, Putin’s this state-centred energy strategy allowed Gazprom to become a giant company in both the domestic and international natural gas markets. And now, it is being reapplied to clinch Rosneft’s dominance over the petroleum production and exporting sector. Rosneft is taking on important duties for the Kremlin, and it looks as if it will be one of the vital pillars of Russia’s transformation into an energy superpower.

South Africa welcomes Chinese military assistance

Source: BDLive
THE South African National Defence Force (SANDF) would benefit from Chinese military training, discipline and expertise if an exchange programme were initiated, Maj-Gen Ntakaleleni Sigudu of the Department of Defence said on Wednesday.
Addressing diplomats and military representatives on the 86th anniversary of the Chinese People’s Liberation Army, Maj-Gen Sigudu said had it not been for China’s contribution to the military training of cadres of the African National Congress and other liberation movements in Africa, the continent’s freedom could have taken much longer.
He said China’s role in South Africa’s liberation should be celebrated as it did not start between 15 and 20 years with the change of China’s expansionist economic policy but dated back to the colonial era.
He said although modern Chinese policy seemed focused on economic ties and trade, the presence in South Africa of a new military attaché of China, Senior Col Xu Jianwei, was testimony to the need to broaden ties to include agreements that could improve military training and expertise to help the African Union build a formidable Africa-based peacekeeping force.
“Conflict is still a plague on this continent and the continent is increasingly challenged to build capacity to engage and tackle its own problems. Therefore we appreciate the undertaking by the Chinese People’s Liberation Army to contribute significantly to the AU’s objectives of building its own strong, effective and efficient peacekeeping capability,” he said.
He congratulated China for the more focused and value-adding economic development programme in Africa that had led to roads and rail infrastructure development in some African states as well as the construction of the AU headquarters in Addis Ababa.
China offered a genuine partnership unparalleled by the contributions in the past of Africa’s colonial masters.
Snr Col Xu said China’s military participation in Africa was growing, with Chinese soldiers already on the ground in Sudan, Liberia and the Democratic Republic of Congo. He said the Chinese People’s Liberation Army planned to steadily increase its participation in peacekeeping efforts in Africa because the continent’s stability was in the global interest.
He said China particularly wanted to work side by side with South Africa, whose foreign policy was focused on bringing stability in Africa to enhance social development and trade. This was already having a significant effect on stabilising many countries previously facing conflict.

Asian countries decide to create trade pact for A-Pac

Source: Econ Times
NEW DELHI: Business leaders of Asian nations today decided to promote new free trade agreements and strengthen the existing pacts to use them as building blocks for creating a Free Trade Area of the Asia Pacific (FTAAP).
According to a joint statement issued after the 4th Asian Business Summit, economic partnership agreements and FTAs will bind Asian economies together and promote greater regional cooperation for expanded trade in goods, services and greater cross-border investment flows, besides dismantling of non- tariff barriers.
“The business leaders resolved to promote new Economic Partnership Agreements (EPAs)/FTAs as well as strengthen the existing agreements within the Asian region in order to use them as building blocks for creating a FTAAP,” it said.
The Summit, which was organised by CII, has emerged as an important forum for leading business organisations across Asia to meet and deliberate upon the key issues that confront them besides identify new cross border economic partnership opportunities as well as build a roadmap for accelerating the region’s economic progress.
The statement also said that the Asian business community called for deeper regional fiscal and monetary cooperation.
“This would involve expanding the membership of the Asian foreign exchange reserve pool under the Chiang Mai Initiative, and coordinated action for addressing the region’s fiscal imbalances,” it said.
The leaders called for establishing a regional financial architecture that gives both large and MSMEs easy access to timely credit.
“The business community called for enhanced utilisation of the Credit Guarantee and Investment Facility, and impressed upon Asian economies to press ahead with the Asian Bond Markets Initiatives for the development of local currency bond markets within the region,” it said.
They welcomed the moves to channel funds for enhancing the liquidity of Asian bond markets.
“The leaders came up with a consensus that it is necessary to dispel market anxiety in order to steadily build a stable Asian financial market. The leaders, therefore, asked each economy to implement fiscal policies which aim at building sound and reliable public financing system,” it added.
Further, to improve energy efficiency and reduce environmental burden, the participants said they would continue to collaborate to develop and spread green technologies, products, services and enhance capabilities to utilise them.
“These include energy-conservation, low-environmental- impact urban development, renewable energy, nuclear energy, and efficient use of fossil fuels. The Summit called for a region-wide effort in building initiatives such as the bilateral offset mechanism,” it said.

Congress Abuses 'It's Classified' To Hide Stuff They Don't Want To Talk About

Congress Abuses 'It's Classified' To Hide Stuff They Don't Want To Talk About

Manning Faces Lifetime In Jail, While The Wrongdoers He Exposed Are Free

Manning Faces Lifetime In Jail, While The Wrongdoers He Exposed Are Free

New Court Ruling Makes it Easier for Police to Track Your Cell Phone

A Fifth Circuit Court of Appeals ruling this week will make it easier for police to track your movements through your cell phone after the court decided police aren't required to obtain a search warrant to track you.
The case involved a 2010 law enforcement request to obtain 60 days of cell phone location records from two cell phone companies. The government wanted to identify which cell phone towers a particular phone number had connected to in order to place a suspect at the scene of a crime, and submitted a request under the Stored Communication Act ("SCA") for access. The magistrate judge denied the request, understanding that records revealing your daily movements could show where you worship, what your medical conditions might be, and what political issues might interest you, not to mention who your friends and family are. It therefore rightfully ordered the government to apply for a search warrant supported by probable cause before accessing this sensitive data.
Naturally unhappy with the magistrate's conclusion, the government appealed first to the district court, which agreed with the magistrate, and then to the Fifth Circuit. Since there was no opposing party (the suspect wasn't informed of the surveillance and no criminal case was filed) we stepped in with the ACLU and other organizations, filing an amicus brief and participating at oral argument (WMA), urging the court to uphold the lower court opinions and rule a search warrant is needed in order to access cell tracking data since the data reveals extensive information about where a person goes and who they associate with.
In a misguided 2-1 decision, the Fifth Circuit reversed the privacy-protective lower court opinions and instead ruled the government did not need a search warrant to access historical cell site records. That's because the court focused not on what the data revealed -- a person's location over an extended period of time -- but rather on who owned and generated that data: the cell phone providers. Since these records were owned and created by the phone providers, the user has no expectation of privacy in them and thus no search warrant was needed to access that data. The court did not address whether people have a reasonable expectation of privacy in their movements and made clear its decision only concerned obtaining historical cell site records when a user makes or ends a phone call. In a compelling dissenting opinion, Judge Dennis noted that the constitutional issues were tricky ones and given the Supreme Court's reluctance to weigh in on the interplay between the Fourth Amendment and new technologies, the SCA should and could be interpreted to require a search warrant before police can access location data from a cell phone provider.
Throughout the majority opinion is the misguided belief that a user understands and voluntarily chooses to reveal their location to the cell phone provider and ultimately the government through the user's own free will. The court believed that your location is voluntarily turned over when the "user makes a choice to get a phone, to select a particular service provider, and to make a call." But common sense and experience calls this premise into question. Just last week the New Jersey Supreme Court ruled that police needed to get a warrant to track a person through their cell phone under under its state constitution. It noted a cell phone is "an indispensable part of modern life" and that "people buy cell phones to communicate with others, to use the Internet" but "no one buys a cell phone to share detailed information about their whereabouts with the police." While a cell phone user may naturally understand that they've given their location to the provider for a discrete and limited purpose -- to connect their phone call -- that is not the same as giving the government a detailed map of their movements. The New Jersey Supreme Court stated the "obvious" issue clearly: "cell phones are not meant to serve as tracking devices to locate their owners wherever they may be."
More generally the "third party doctrine" -- the idea you have no expectation of privacy in information turned over to third parties -- is dangerously eroding our Fourth Amendment protection at a time when cell phone companies and Internet service providers are stockpiling extensive personal information about all of us. Last year, Justice Sotomayor of the U.S. Supreme Court sounded the alarm in her concurring opinion in United States v. Jones writing the doctrine was "ill suited to the digital age, in which people reveal a great deal of information about themselves to third parties in the course of carrying out mundane tasks." But courts have been reluctant to follow Justice Sotomayor's cue in reexamining the doctrine. Its been up to state courts and legislatures to proactively protect people's location privacy while federal courts are reluctant to act, relying on the third party doctrine to reject a search warrant requirement for the data.
As more challenges to the constitutionality of cell site collection make their way through the federal courts, we hope judges will understand the only way to ensure our constitutional rights are protected is to find that the sensitive location information revealed by cell tracking deserves Fourth Amendment protection notwithstanding the fact the records are created and stored by cell phone providers.

Life-Cycle Economic Analysis of Distributed Manufacturing with Open-Source 3-D Printersmore by Joshua Pearce

Study Finds Major Savings Through Household 3-D Printing

Study Finds Major Savings Through Household 3-D Printing

July 31st, 2013 | by Michael Keller
Though 3-D printing may still be a long way from the Star Trek replicator that can create any object on demand, a new study has found that a currently available machine could save the average household considerable money.
Michigan Technological University engineers conducted an economic analysis of 3-D printing simple goods like toys, kitchen aids and tools at home using a low-cost open-source device like one called a RepRap. The manufacturing technique called 3-D printing builds objects through a computer-guided extrusion head that deposits successive layers of plastic or other material.
“RepRaps have been proposed and demonstrated to be useful for conventional prototyping and engineering, customizing scientific equipment, and appropriate technology-related manufacturing for sustainable development,” the study’s authors write. “However, in order for this technology to proliferate like 2-D electronic printers have, it must be economically viable for a typical household.
The RepRap—short for replicating rapid prototyper—has become a pillar of the maker community for several reasons, including that it can build many of the parts needed to make an exact copy of itself.
The team used a life-cycle analysis to compare whether buying consumer products online or printing them out with a RepRap would ultimately be more economical for the average U.S. household.  
They chose 20 common items—including a garlic press, a showerhead and an iPhone case—that they could purchase online and which also had free digital files available that could guide their printer to make the goods. They found the minimum and maximum prices it cost to buy the items online through Google Shopping and compared that against material and electricity costs for running the printer.
What they found was a stark contrast between buying complete goods and making them at home: It would cost a consumer from $312 to $1,944 to purchase the 20 items online compared to $18 to print them over the course of a weekend.

(A table showing cost differences from the article “Life-Cycle Economic Analysis of Distributed Manufacturing with Open-Source 3D Printers," to be published in the journal Mechatronics. Courtesy Joshua Pearce/MTU.)
Engineering professor and study coauthor Joshua Pearce said in a statement that the machines aren’t yet as simple to set-up or operate as they soon will be. Still, they’re not so complicated that users need a degree to start making key hangers and paper towel holders. “You don’t need to be an engineer or a professional technician to set up a 3-D printer,” he says. “Some can be set up in under half an hour, and even the RepRap can be built in a weekend by a reasonably handy do-it-yourselfer.”
Since the price tag of an open-source 3-D printer can range from $350 to $2,000, the researchers calculated the cost savings of making 20 similar items a year would allow a household to pay off the device in a few months to a few years.
“For the average American consumer, 3-D printing is ready for show time,” Pearce said. “With the exponential growth of free designs and expansion of 3-D printing, we are creating enormous potential wealth for everyone.”
Top Image: A 3-D printer at work, via Shutterstock.

Latest Leak Shows NSA Can Collect Nearly Any Internet Activity Worldwide Without Prior Authorization

Latest Leak Shows NSA Can Collect Nearly Any Internet Activity Worldwide Without Prior Authorization

The NSA's Overreach And Lack Of Transparency Is Hurting American Businesses

The NSA's Overreach And Lack Of Transparency Is Hurting American Businesses

Kiss - I Was Made For Lovin' You ( HQ 1080p HD Upscale )

Kiss - I Was Made For Lovin' You ( HQ 1080p HD Upscale )

Uploaded on Oct 27, 2011
Kiss - I Was Made For Lovin' You ( HQ 1080p HD Upscale )

"I Was Made for Lovin' You" is a song by American hard rock band Kiss, originally released on their 1979 album Dynasty. It was released as the A-side of their first single from the album. It was the band's second Gold single, selling over 1 million copies. The single was certified Platinum in the US on August 16, 1979, and in Canada on August 1, 1979. The B-side of the single is the album track "Hard Times", which was written by Ace Frehley. The single reached #11 on the US Billboard singles chart. The song also became a massive hit in Australia reaching #1 on the ARIA charts in 1979. The song also charted in Western Europe, it became a top 20 hit in Sweden, a top 10 hit in Norway, made it to the number 2 position in France, Germany, Switzerland, and Austria. In the Netherlands it was a #1.

More info at

This video clip was literally a pain in the ass to process. So very noisy with fizz, scratches and block artifacts all over the place. I wanted to scream. No joke.

De-noising took multiple passes lasting many hours to remove each type of 'dirt' and 'noise' before leaving the video in a much better state than it was in the first place. This blurry video was also very low on visual detail and I've gone all out to preserve as much detail as possible during the de-noising process. I didn't get rid of all of it because this would have damaged the video further and so I stopped at a certain point. I doubt you will actually notice the remaining noise artifacts anyway.

Colors and lighting had to be fixed as it was terrible to begin with. For a while I thought that someone had made a mistake and had actually shot this video in black and white. Cue sarcastic grimace.

It was sharpened to a pleasant visual level while scaling it to HD resolution and the overall filter combo has given it a sleek 'glossy' look compared to the original crappy mpg file. Those of you that have it in your collection can see the dramatic difference between that and my restoration of this video. Audio did not need to be touched as it was excellent already and sounds great, so turn up that volume!

This is the best quality video for this Kiss song that you will find on youtube. I hope you will enjoy it. Please tell others about my channel and the videos I have restored! :-)

Mega Advertising Corps Creating Database Comparable to NSA

Daniel G. J.
July 31st, 2013
Updated 07/31/2013
Privacy experts think that the merger of the world’s two biggest advertising agencies could create a massive database of information about consumers. The database would be similar to what the National Security Agency is amassing about phone and internet usage, and it could be used to greatly restrict your rights.
A fingerprint with a dark background.Omnicom Group and Publicis Groupe are two giant holding companies that own dozens of advertising agencies and marketing firms. The two companies have decided to merge into one titanic holding company. Part of this company’s holdings will be a giant database about consumer habits.
The database contains e-scores, or consumer valuation. This is information that retailers, credit card companies, search engines, and other organizations collect about you every time you visit a website or make a transaction.

Big Business Knows All About Your Lifestyle

The problem is that such e-scores are increasingly being used to analyze your lifestyle and make decisions about you. A health insurance company might check the e-score to see if you eat at McDonald’s or buy liquor or cigarettes before writing you a policy. A bank might check to see if you gamble or go to casinos before writing you a loan. The bank might also check to see if you visit online casinos or have even purchased airline tickets to Las Vegas in the past.
In other words, these institutions know a lot about your personal lives. They track everything you do online and every purchase you make with your debit or credit or card.

A Tool for Discrimination

That means they know what books you buy from Amazon, what videos you stream from Netflix, and what websites you visit. It wouldn’t be that hard to discern your political or religious beliefs from such metadata. The data could be used to discriminate against people that hold certain beliefs.
For example, bureaucrats could screen applicants to determine which ones would be more likely to question authority or criticize a government policy. They might not hire somebody who regularly visits The Guardian’s website because it often contains stories that contradict the official line coming out of Washington. Let alone an alternative news website like Storyleak.
Particularly bothersome is the fact that data is now sold in automated trading platforms for everybody to buy. The combined Omnicom and Publicis will be able to make a fortune selling this data.
Controls need to be placed on the kind of data companies can collect and how they sell it. Such private data mining is as big a threat to our privacy as the data mining done by agencies like the NSA.

Graphic: How Just 6 Corps Own 90% of The Media

Anthony Gucciardi
July 31st, 2013
Updated 07/31/2013
We have known for quite some time now that the flow of information is tightly controlled within the mainstream media system, but one graphic really highlights just how tightly controlled the information we are delivered truly is — and how a total of only 6 corporations run the show.
From Time Warner (CNN, HBO, TIME) to GE (NBC, Comcast), a whopping 6 corporations control 90% of the mainstream media within the United States. And what’s more, the amount of revenues from the tightly controlled mainstream media machine are enough to beat out Finland’s entire GDP, buy every NFL team 12 times, and fund the government bailout of General Motors 5 times. Checkout the powerful graphic below and share it with others to inform them as to how controlled the media really is:
An infographic on corporations that own mainstream media.
I was excited to see such a nicely designed image created, which actually comes from a college tuition cost website called Frugal Dad, as oftentimes people do not have the time to sit down and read 500 words on a particularly subject — let alone actually absorb the information and get it out. With videos, we can get more direct with media, but sometimes pictures (or infographics, as informational graphics like this one are now known) are much more effective when it comes to spreading the word.
Time and time again the mainstream media, owned by these 6 mega corporations and fronted by 232 media executives, continues to ignore the real issues in place of lesser stories. In addition, they also continue to fuel the erratic flames of the politically correct agenda into every news piece imaginable. From turning the Trayvon Martin case into a racial war of sorts, which even prominent black rappers spoke out about, to ignoring serious international ‘combat readiness’ war drills that the alternative news forced the mainstream media corporations to cover weeks later.
But despite the fact that the mainstream media still has the billions to fund its operations and beam the nightly news out into the living rooms of US citizens and others around the world, we see independent reporters and websites like myself reaching millions per month with virtually zero budget and absolutely no corporate backers. We’ve already seen MSNBC slump into poor ratings, and even Gallup polls have highlighted the completely obliterated trust of the general public in the mainstream media.
Even with enough greenbacks to purchase every NFL team in existence 12 times, the mainstream media still can’t compete with real news.

The Doors - L.A. Woman Official Video HQ

If 'they' say I never Loved you know 'they'  are a liar !!!   (USA)  land of my birth :)          

The Doors - L.A. Woman Official Video HQ

Stealth Terror IV: Earthquakes 

The following is the fourth and final installment of an exclusive four part series on probing the relationship between America’s police state and less-understood weather warfare programs. Part I of Stealth Terror may be found here, Part II here, and Part III here. -JFT
As I examine my report on earthquakes, its awesome implications could well tie in to the present sequence one day because New York City is not only hurricane-vulnerable, it sits on rock formations which, when there is an inevitable (or managed) shift will, as one possibility, destroy Brooklyn and its brick buildings and the people in them, including a friend of mine.  This could happen before New York City sinks out of sight.
To my knowledge, earthquakes have no natural connection to hurricanes, nor to weather conditions, for that matter.  The earth’s crust in which they occur moves because the plates are in motion, such that continents have met and merged, and will continue to do so.  The pressure builds day by day, and century by century, until some force triggers the movement of a plate to yield to the pressure build-up so that there is a sudden slip.  “The key to geophysical warfare is the identification of environmental instabilities to which the addition of a small amount of energy would release vastly greater amounts of energy.”  (Bertell)
The connection with weather events is the mechanism that is used for pulling the trigger, by the force of ELF waves created by HAARP.  Earthquake management was started by Nikola Tesla in the 1890’s, to become the plaything of scientists over time, in which a managed earthquake would be recognized only by its creator.  That both hurricanes and earthquakes show parallel increase is a super coincidence indicative of human decision.
The official tabulation of earthquakes worldwide is on websites of the U.S. Geological Survey with records back to 1900 and earlier, the record of its own collection system starting in 1973, which by December 31, 2012 completed a base of 40 years of data to permit observation of changes in normal.
There is no question whatsoever that earthquakes can be set off electronically by a HAARP transmitter if the underground or undersea earth structure is ready.  Abrupt changes in pattern in the record allow one to observe by mathematical probability some oddities that are otherwise unstated.
The reader will better understand this with some examples, which I will keep as short as I can.  One that is basic is that simply by count, the number of earthquakes worldwide noticeably increased in 1992, not gradually but suddenly, to a level that continues today.
USGS FAQ:  “Why are we having so many earthquakes?  Has earthquake activity been  increasing?
USGS response, in short:  In the last twenty years we have definitely had an increase in the number of earthquakes we have been able to locate each year.  There are more seismograph stations in the world and many improvements in global communications, thus we can locate many small earthquakes which were undetected in earlier years.  Looking at the past 32 years, from 1969 through 2001, only 1992 and 1995-1997 were years that we have reached or exceeded the long-term average number of major earthquakes since 1971.  Earthquakes occur in clusters.  Casualties increase because population is increasing.
Response to the response: The “many small earthquakes” that make up the growth referred to do not include the M6.0 and greater.  Quakes smaller than M6.0 occasionally cause fatalities and/or destruction and can be of interest (e.g. the M5.9 in Virginia in 2011 that cracked the Washington Monument and caused excitement in some of the same area that later received Hurricane Sandy, e.g. New York City) but to include them in averages with the larger ones is, in terms of research effort, the tail wagging the dog.  USGS annual estimate for M4.0-4.9 is 13,000, M5.0-5.9 1,319, M6.0-6.9s 134, M7.0 and greater 16.  Even the M6.0-6.9 typically causes no fatalities.  Further, the dates noted in the above USGS response do not reach the spectacular period of Bush/Cheney which defines itself.  Earthquakes do occur in clusters, some of which tell a story.
The moment in presidential history that invites scrutiny is the approximate halfway point in the USGS record as Bill Clinton was elected in 1992, with Bush 41 defeated.  The statistics show that in the years 1973 through 1992 the number of earthquakes M6.0 and greater worldwide showed a low of 92 per year, a high of 128.  In the subsequent period of the same length, 1993 through 2012, the low was 129, the high 203.  This new level was the status quo until Barack Obama took office in 2009, when it switched back to the pre-1992 level for his first six months.  At midterm his total of 55, continued for the rest of the year, would have been 110, a level not seen for the previous 18 years.
The number of quakes increases concomitantly with the number of days per month upon which M6.0+ quakes occurred, the pre-1992 number averaging 7.5 days per month, with negligible variation—Ford 7.9, Carter 7.3, Reagan 7.3, Bush 41 at 7.3 for his first three years, seeming to define a norm.  In the final year in office of Bush Sr., 1992, his average jumped from three years at the normal 7.3, to 11.75 days for the fourth year.  It did not go back to the norm when Clinton took office, but continued at the higher level of Bush Sr., seemingly a new normal, for his eight years averaging 9.4, followed by Bush/Cheney’s two terms at 9.8.  Obama’s average for his first six months surprisingly met the old-time 7.5 as if to return to the old-time era.  This was not to be, as he finished four years with an average of 9.7.  The last half of 2009 hit 106, to end with 161, to offer no contrast with the new “normal,” which had reached that level.  Some months in the second half reached unprecedented highs of record, giving the appearance of someone getting a hot message in August to catch up.
Pause here for perspective.  A person new to this and scanning rapidly could dismiss it as mere coincidence, something to remark upon but not for one to claim as useful fact.  That person also will not have noted something about our major media.  I try to keep up with the New York Times because I believe it has a serious goal, and reputation, for stating facts correctly and for probing subjects that have relevance for human rights.  To state it deferentially, its flaw may be that it is too conscious of its dignified reputation and its commercial and political base.  Its failure to comment or follow up on a condemning fact is left to “conspiracy theorists”–who under a previous executive editor were ridiculed by the Times.  Perspective:  If by some quirk one knew nothing of what had happened on 9/11, or since, if he were then to read issues of the Times from that day until the present he would have the impression that the officially-accepted story had not been seriously challenged.
The Bush/Cheney earthquake record showed a peculiarity in 2001 and 2002 that stands by itself—a record frequency of 10-day counts, not as an average, but the total number of 10-day counts in a month in which quakes of M6.0 and greater occurred.  In the Bush/Cheney first year there were 6 months with 10s, in their second year 4, in the subsequent six years of their administration 13, for a total of 23.  This is unprecedented, simply not to be found elsewhere in the record since people started keeping track of earthquakes.
If there are 134 earthquakes per year of magnitude 6.0-6.9 as averaged by the USGS, and 15 of M7.0-7.9, plus one of M8.0 or higher, total 150 for a 365-day year, the rate is one quake per 2.433 days worldwide.  Ten days normally would thus see slightly more than 4 M6.0+ earthquakes, in 20 days 8.  For 20 days taken out of the hands of Mother Nature there once were 25 such quakes for the first time of record in October of Obama’s first year, when the boys at the console were evidently playing catch-up to end the year with a “normal” total to go into the record.  In the USGS reporting, any half-year total would no longer show the first-half extremity after the July count was added.
In 2008 another Bush/Cheney set catches our eye:10-15-10-12-10-13-10-14, in that order.  In the last four months of their tenure this string faded to 6-11-8-9.  If those last four months had not been so “normal” and 14 days had been set each month instead, they could have chosen to finish their presidency with an even 1,000 days upon which M6.0+ quakes occurred–an eyecatcher to be avoided, both for its even number and its unprecedented total.  Back in the years before 1992, averaging 7.5 days per month, a normal total would have been 730 days in an 8-year term, but during the 8 years starting with 1992, 265 more days of M6.0+ earthquakes worldwide were added to that period.
My point is that this seemingly chosen use of “10” has the appearance of a management quota, possibly for the purpose of sharing the HAARP facility with other projects while increasing the collection in a measured way.  One may note that the 10-day regimen was initiated in Bush/Cheney’s first whole month in office, February, 2001.  The next three months dipped to a normal-looking 7, 9, and 8 days.  June then went to 10, as did July, the beginning of a series which, had it continued, would have created a streak of 10s for every month, June-through-January.  This series was interrupted by a two-month drop to 7 and 8 in August and September, the timing consistent with the reported receipt on August 9 by Bush of the most definite notice of pending attack on the WTC.
Second place for all-time record for the number “10” in day-count was the 10 “10s which occurred under Clinton.  I see this as a program carryover set by Bush 41 in personnel and program in his final year when Bush was confident that he would have the next four years to develop it, but didn’t.  The “weather” record at the change, unlike the stumbling Obama crew, shows Clinton to be more ready for “weather control.”
The mechanism behind weather warfare and earthquake as a weapon, HAARP, was pioneered at Penn State University and developed there for 30 years, moved to Colorado because its electronics caused so much interference in the Penn State area.  The first large ionospheric heater was built at Plattesville, Colorado.  The operation was moved to Alaska in 1983, near the University of Alaska, for the uniquely beneficial location for worldwide reach and the immense amount of energy available to fuel its acres of generators fed from a natural gas reservoir nearby with no commercial competition.  The U. of Alaska uses HAARP for some university research, but its overriding control for other purposes is elsewhere.  Presumably direction of its 3.6 million-watt radio waves sent to bounce off the ionosphere is wherever the Defense Advanced Research Project Agency designs to have it controlled, by cable connection.
With very few exceptions, the official truth which is not to be disturbed is that only Mother Nature can cause a serious earthquake, a flood, tornado, a hurricane, or, worst of all, a drought.  Even if one finds it wise to tell his children that babies are brought by the stork, it is still a fabrication.  Geoengineering and weather control were known well before the nations got together in 1977 to approve the Environmental Modification Treaty —not only regarding control of the weather, but specifically modification of the earth, through earthquakes.
If one believes none of this is factual, what was all the fuss about ENMOD, signed by 76 nations?  And why is the respected Secretary of Defense William M. Cohen widely quoted at a counterterrorism conference in 1997, that ”Others are engaging in an eco-type of terrorism whereby they can alter the climate, set off earthquakes, volcanoes remotely through the use of electromagnetic waves. … It’s real, and that’s the reason why we have to intensify our efforts”?
The USSR and the USA both backed ENMOD during a period of unusual frequency for highly fatal earthquakes during Nixon’s second term, when he found it wise to resign and to let an unelected “vice president,” Gerald Ford, take his place in 1974.  Both nations had the capability, and while they were probably the major protagonists, it was a game increasingly available to others.  Senator Claiborne Pell had been central to the action but to his expressed regret was unable to prevent the Senate from exempting research and development from the ENMOD prohibitions, preventing only engaging in “military or other hostile use of environmental modification techniques having widespread, long-lasting or severe effects as the means of destruction, damage or injury to the other party.”  Pell’s prediction was that as the machinery and skills were developed under this exception the temptation would be great to ignore the limitations of the treaty.
The pre-ENMOD statistics of the brief Ford period tempts one to conclude that the major earthquakes in those years were unnatural.  Not counting Ford, from 1900 to 2013 earthquakes which caused 5,000 or more fatalities occurred on the average 1.5 times per four-year term of the 18 presidents from Theodore Roosevelt to Barack Obama, most with one, others not more than 2.  This is a remarkable regularity.  George W. Bush had six qualifying events occurring over eight years, thus averaging 3 per term, exceeding everyone but Ford ratewise.  With 7 events and only 2.4 years in office, Ford’s rate for a whole term would be 11.5. 
What this best resembles is a duel between the U.S. and the USSR, one which had statistically quieted after ENMOD took effect on October 5, 1978, with Jimmy Carter in office.  In the Carter term, then Reagan, then the senior Bush, a period of 16 years, there were only four earthquakes with 5,000 or more fatalities, the number thus only 1 per presidential term against that 11.5 rate for Ford.  The most fatal event of that period was under G.H.W Bush: Iran in 1990, its 50,000 fatalities the highest number for that Muslim nation at least since 1900.  (All these coincidences require thought of motivation.)
December 26, 1991, dawned on Russia’s first whole day as just “Russia,” for good or ill, without its 14 companion states.  G.H.W., with 1992 the last year of what was to be his only term as president, was confident of re-election that November, although not the view of his wife, his campaign advisors or principal staff.  He was ill, aging, widely despised for Iran-Contra and out of touch.  In his refusal to be defeated he vomited in the Japanese prime minister’s lap, seen on worldwide television.  He won 38 percent of the vote, beaten by Clinton’s 43 percent and Ross Perot’s 19 percent.
As I proceed with my “framework” logic, one must remember that the atomic bomb used to Japan’s surprise in 1945 was the product of an operation performed in complete secrecy in the U.S.  The USSR spied on the operation and wished to compete but lacked uranium.  Information about the capability of the U.S. in environmental modification can be seen today as similarly secret in terms of the media, and the widespread requirement for public officials, employees, and contractors that they fabricate in defense of their continued employment– or their survival.
As I relate numbers to presidents, I refer to events as if all such things were within their personal knowledge and thus responsibility, which is politically if not factually correct.  Harry Truman, shortly after taking office, learned about the Hiroshima plan, although his personal writings said he had ordered the bomb to be used only on military installations, not women and children.  If true, this gives one a fuzzy picture of the president’s power (or truthfulness).  My own doubt is whether a president knows in advance, or possibly even in retrospect, that an earthquake like the one that ruined Haiti was (1) scheduled to happen and (2) would kill as many innocent people as it did, inasmuch as the Haitian quake in 1770 near the same spot which also destroyed Port-au-Prince and was Haiti’s worst since that time, killed only 200.  The difference is that the one in 1770 had a foreshock, while the one in 2010 gave only four seconds’ warning before the ceilings fell—a trait typical of an engineered earthquake.
What a difference a date makes.  If a damaging earthquake happens on a particular date which is a repetition of the date of a damaging earthquake a year earlier, I find it contrary to good practice as an analyst to brush it off as only a rare selection by Mother Nature, when she appears from a distance to be weeping.  The date that draws attention is December 26.  You may search the record back to 1900, or 1800, and you will not find a date as remarkable as this.  I have tried.  It’s not Mother Nature’s style.  But whose choice was it?  Russia’s?  Or is it British, for whom December 26 is celebrated as an after-Christmas holiday and a second day for gift-giving, called “Boxing Day” upon which the superior gives gifts to his inferior, traditionally items suitable to his work, like boots, or a new kitchen dress.  An earthquake as a gift to inferiors is a not-so-subtle irony.
December 26, 1941, was the day that British Prime Minister Winston Churchill, on his first U.S. visit, 19 days after the Pearl Harbor attack, addressed the Congress in special session to urge the U.S. to persevere against the Japanese, urging that “the germ centers of hatred and revenge be constantly and vigilantly curbed and treated” and that “an adequate organization be set up “to make sure that the pestilence can be controlled at its earliest beginnings before it spreads and rages through the entire earth.”
A half century later this would be the essence of Bush’s National Security Strategy, as offered by him on June 1, 2002 at West Point as rationalization for his no-limits “war on terror”:
“The United States has long maintained the option of preemptive actions to counter a sufficient threat to our national security  The greater the threat the greater is the risk of inaction—and the more compelling the case for taking anticipatory action to defend ourselves, even if uncertainty remains as to the time and place of the enemy’s attack.  To forestall or prevent such hostile acts by our adversaries, the United States will, if necessary, act preemptively.”
Another rationale for “December 26” is the turning point in the American War of Independence, when General Washington crossed the Delaware River before dawn to attack the Hessian soldiers encamped on the other side, more than normally relaxed due to their celebration of Christmas.  This has been the date chosen by some historians to identify the moment when Britain lost its hegemony over the United States.
These all have British connections, all fitting political/military principles for an American or British message.  It is a message, is it not?  Flaunting a transparently coded date expresses confidence that the actor is confident of his power.
In world earthquake history the date has Soviet significance, rather than British or American.  In 1939 World War II was well underway, Great Britain taking a beating but still a year before the U.S. would become involved when a notable M7.8 earthquake occurred at Erzincan, Turkey, on December 26, killing 32,700.  Erzincan is a city near the east end of the Anatolian fault which underlies the length of Turkey as it dips north to the Black Sea.  It is notable as an area for the mining of chromate, a vital war material  without which Germany could not manufacture hard steel products like tanks, airplane engines, weapons, and artillery shells.  One of Turkey’s chromate customers was Adolph Hitler, another Joseph Stalin, but in Hitler’s case his need was desperate in that Germany had no other source of chromate.  Turkey held Hitler’s fate in its hands, while the USSR had other sources.  Stalin got Turkey to promise that it would not sell chromate to Hitler, which would close down the war, except that Turkey broke its promise, Stalin found out, and the earthquake was Turkey’s punishment.
I cannot with confidence state that the Erzincan quake was of Russian contrivance, yet it turned out to be the beginning of a chain of fatal earthquakes on the Anatolian fault, of which there were several of varying fatality, moving westward, the last one on August 17, 1999 at Izmit, Turkey, killing 17,118.  Istanbul is expecting and preparing for a big one which well may be an Erzincan descendant.  To my knowledge the special date has not re-appeared in Turkish or in Russian earthquake events or implications.
In Russian use the message would appear to be simply to refer to the Erzincan quake as an example of its power of retribution—earth-shaking if one considers the subsequent reminders along the Anatolian fault.  One might suggest that use of the date by some other nation as causing Russia’s “plausible deniability” to fade, making the USSR plausibly guilty.  With its early use of Nikola Tesla’s techniques, Russia would be first choice so long as the U.S. could look innocent, buttressed by Russia’s use of the weather.  The last U.S. blizzard of size comparable to Nemo in 2012 was believed to have been caused by the USSR in 1978, only months before both parties signed the ENMOD treaty and committed not to use the weather against other nations.  It brought a record snowfall to much of the U.S. including Ohio, and in 1988 a drought in the western U.S. called by a Wikipedia author the “costliest natural disaster in the history of the United States.”  From 1985 to 1991 it grew “frightening” to California fruit growers.  If DARPA is now delivering weather to Russia, it appears to be more than getting even in recent years with record cold winters, heat and drought.
In my mind the significance of use of the date “December 26” is that the earthquake on such a date is a message from the U.S. by way of a reminder of who is boss—and where it is not used in a notably fatal earthquake it is a way to enhance our plausible deniability, as with China or Pakistan, whose relationship we needed to preserve.
Erzincan stands out only because when one goes back to 1900 it is the only earthquake on a December 26th of record in the 20th Century by that date that was notable for its killing.  The next one on December 26 was in 1975 at Tonga, Melanesia, a mid-Pacific spot of constant volcanic activity—an M7.8, no fatalities, its distinction being that it was almost an M8.0, a size expected only once per year and unusually powerful.  The next December 26 was in 1992, an M6.8, no fatalities, at the place in deep ocean where the continental plates move against one another on the Mid-Atlantic Ridge at Romanche Gap.  This is a “classic” subduction zone, on the equator, equidistant from two continents, a location that can cause it to be seen as a memorable good-bye from George H.W. Bush as he prepared to leave office a few weeks later, in January, forever.  But no one noticed
Turning to the 21st Century, the following table shows all the earthquakes of 500 fatalities or more under Bush/Cheney.  While Muslim countries naturally predominate in earthquake counts, earlier presidencies do not show this degree of consistency.
% Muslim
India (Gujarat)
Afghanistan (Kush)
Algeria (Northern)
Iran (Bam)
Morocco (N Central)
Iran (Central)
Indonesia (Sumatra)
Indonesia (N Sumatra)
Pakistan (Kashmir)
Indonesia (Java)
Indonesia (S of Java)
Coast of Central Peru
China (Sichuan)
The following list shows earthquakes of magnitude 6.0 or greater causing fatalities of 1,000 or more which occurred on any 26th day between 1900 and 2013 in records available from the USGS.  The list supports the conclusion that the law of averages for this type of fatal-earthquake-and-date connection places the 21st Century already far out of line, accomplished within only one presidential term.  This connects with hurricanes, to support the conclusion that both were manipulated in the Bush/Cheney presidency.
Turkey (Erzincan)

Turkey (Ladik)

Macedonia (Skopje)
India (Gujarat)

Iran (Bam)

Indonesia (Sumatra)

Indonesia (Java)
The following table details this phenomenon of coincidence by presidencies from Richard Nixon to date.  It includes all December 26 events, and all “26th” events where there were fatalities of any number.  It covers the 40 years in which the U.S. Geological Survey has had the recording responsibility, illustrating the relative calm during the first 20 years compared with the manipulative 20 years, 1993 to date.  Another page showing the 40 years prior to 1973 would have three entries, as per “20th Century” above.  One more, taking us from 1933 to 1900, would be blank.
The USGS, doing its job conscientiously, would say that there appear to be more earthquakes now because more effort has gone into finding and recording.  As noted earlier, this would mainly apply to earthquakes of magnitude less than 6.0.


Dec. 26
Tonga, Melanesia

















Dec 26
Mid-Atlantic Ridge, Romanche Gap



Dec 26
North Coast of New Guinea, Indonesia

Sep 26
Central Italy

Dec 26
Equatorial Central Pacific



Bush II
Jan 26
Gujarat, India


May 26
Halmahera, Indonesia

Dec 26
Bam, Iran

Nov 26
Papua, Indonesia

Dec 26
Sumatra-Andaman Islands

Sep 26
Northern Peru

May 26
Java, Indonesia

Dec 26
Taiwan Region

Dec 26
Taiwan Region (Different plate)

Dec 26
Kuril Islands, Japan

Dec 26
Aleutian Islands, Alaska


Dec 26
Papua, Indonesia




Bear in mind that a December 26 or a 26th with no fatalities simply demonstrates the likelihood that the attempted quake could have been intended to take a shot at a possible event that did not work.  There can be no foreshock on an earlier day because that would not be on the intended date for a message.  If HAARP cannot budge the surrounding rock on the chosen day, it must be left for another day.  The subaqueous attempts such as Tonga and Romanche Gap (above), and several under Bush Jr. appear to have been such tries.
Then there is the one on January 26, 2001, less than a week after Bush/Cheney took office.  They (Cheney) couldn’t wait to get a December 26, so they used January 26, which killed 20,003 people at Gujarat, India, near the Pakistan border.  Only a coincidence?  Rational answer: No.
The date “December 26,” and “26” in any month may now have gone out of use as we see large and damaging events of questionable authorship occurring under President Obama without that identification.  It seems remarkable that the media, even in past times, have been reluctant to pursue this oddity.  It was mentioned in Wikipedia that three had the same date a year apart, with no further comment.   Obama’s record had a different message, really quite remarkable.
Obama had three notable earthquakes in his first term, none exempt from justified speculation as to human causation (Haiti and Chile in 2010, Japan 2011) which I leave for consideration.  The surprise that Obama had for me was that the number of M6.0 and greater quakes in his first six months in office did not follow the regime which began in Bush Sr.’s last year in office, 1992.  Rather, it would have fit perfectly in any year from 1973 to 1991.  When Obama took office in 2009, the running average for him to meet for a normal appearance was 158 (brought up from the old 110 by the constantly high annual levels after 1991).  His first six months ended with 55, back to the first half of the pre-Bush average, then ….
I watched attentively in July, then August, then September to see if the old era had indeed returned, but by September it became obvious that management was unleashed as that month substantially exceeded the Bush/Cheney record for a single month.  In October the lid blew off with 32 quakes on 19 days, for which there is no precedent.  Nothing close.  This is not a number that can be faked.  In the NEIC “Earthquake Search Results” each event is recorded by date, time, latitude, longitude, depth and magnitude, thus acquiring a specific identity somewhere on earth.  Some changes are expected based on subsequent information, not enough to change totals in most months, then only minimally.
One exception is the case of foreshocks and aftershocks, which are in fact earthquakes, occasionally compounding counts such as the deep sea quake offshore from Honshu in 2011 for which there were hundreds, but this is not the cause for the Obama October 2009 extremity.  In the annual USGS report of earthquake numbers one sees only the total for the year, thus, surprising as was the six-month count of 55, it disappeared within the annual total of 161, closely akin to the previous year’s Bush/Cheney norm.of 158.  This is the only number one sees at year’s end.
When Bush/Cheney took office after Clinton, there was no noticeable change.  Obama had been in Washington, a senator, only a year before his election in 2008, whereas Cheney in 2000 was “inside man at the skunk works,” former Secretary of Defense for Bush Sr., former member of Congress, during the 2001 transition at the capitol “renewing old friendships” in the November-January interim (“In My Time / A Personal and Political Memoir,” 2012), knowledgeable in getting the right people into the right places.  He could do that better as vice-president than if he had been president.  What the numbers say to me is that the capability first became available for application in Bush Sr.’s term and was not dislocated by Clinton.  I see the sudden, exact drop to a former level in 2009 as indicating something of a surprise for a largely or entirely new Obama crew working at a high technical/political level.  Democrat Obama may have received a “figure-it-out-for-yourself” reception, having to put things back together after the spectacular, unprecedented, disastrous presidency of Bush/Cheney.  Another listing from the record of worldwide earthquakes is “great” earthquakes of magnitude 8.0 to 9.5.  No president since 1900 had as many great quakes as George W. Bush, with eleven, including the one that caused the December 26, 2004 Sumatra-Andaman tsunami.
When Nikola Tesla died in January of 1943, the FBI made it a point to seize his papers and his hundreds of patents.  Under the Franklin Roosevelt presidency just as the U.S. entered World War II there was a “cluster” of fatal quakes in Japan, the details of which may indicate U.S. use of the Tesla patents.  Beginning later that year, on September 10, 1943, Japan experienced its first 1,000-fatality quake since 1933
From 1933 until January of 1995, a span of 62 years, the only 1000-fatality quakes in Japan came in a cluster between 1943 and 1948.  The 1943 M7.4 (1,190 fatalities) was followed by an M8.1 on December 7, 1944 (998), then a few weeks later, on January 12, 1945 an M7.1 (1,961) struck in the industrial area that included the factories that built the  zero fighters which accompanied the bombers at Pearl Harbor.  Later that year, on August 6th and 8th, the nuclear bombs were dropped on Hiroshima (166,000 estimated fatalities) and Nagasaki (80,000), which made the earthquakes seem only symbolic.
The earthquakers were not through, however.  The following year, the war over, on December 20, 1946, an M7.3 in the Pacific Ocean south of Osaka killed 1,362.  The last one, fifth in the series, an M7.3 on June 28, 1948 on the coast of the Sea of Japan, took 3,769 lives.  Had these last two in the cluster instead have been bombings, they would have been irresponsible, violative of the September 2, 1945 terms of surrender.  None of the foregoing were near enough geographically to each other to seem related—instructive concerning the advantage in “environmental modification,” no reason to suspect there was a violation.  A disadvantage is that even a president may not know his people did it.  I personally recall the hatred of Japan by men who were involved in the Pacific—like a lifetime injury for some.  Those first three quakes were under Roosevelt, the last two under Truman.  It’s always possible that Mother Nature did those for President Truman–or some U.S. military officers who felt it their duty to continue without orders.  They do that.
Not so for the Andaman-Sumatra M9.2 earthquake in the Indian Ocean which caused the historic tsunami in 2004.  Its identification by “December 26” stamps it as caused by DARPA, who else?  Motive?  I could list some for your choice, but I needn’t have that to make me feel secure in my judgment of U.S. responsibility.  The Australian geological agency responsible for earthquake insights noted that it was “unusual” for an undersea megathrust earthquake of this size to have no foreshock.  A similar quake off the northeast coast of Japan in 2011 (Honshu) had several solid foreshocks over three days in producing its devastating tsunami, but it was obviously not intended or designed for a recognizable special date.  The Great Tsunami quake occurred within an hour of the time on December 26 the year before–2003–when an M6.6 killed 31,000 residents of Bam, Iran, leaving 75,600 homeless, 85 percent of buildings damaged or destroyed.  Continuing the coincidence, in 2006 Taiwan got a December 26 hit from an M7.1 that tore up undersea cables connecting Southeast-Asia-to-USA communication and caused severe damage to the southern part of Taiwan, with two fatalities.  The USGS lists a second quake just east of Taiwan on December 26, an M6.8, evidently on a separate plate.  The same day there was an M6.0 near the Kuril Islands which “didn’t work.”  That is, no tsunami.
I realize that it is conceivable that two earthquakes could occur on the same day of the month in different years.  When I study forty years of world earthquake records and find that possibility to be so unlikely in nature that it would be like finding a new element in the atom, and I am aware that a U.S. federal agency has the ability to create the event, anyone who claims it is decided by chance will need to use something other than logic.
If the counter argument is that the United States is a good country, of good people, and would not do that, I think of the way we kill children by the thousands and hundreds of thousands in various places and times (estimate for our Great Tsunami runs about 80,000 children), and how we kill unsuspecting families with drones, and killing our own people with tornados and hurricanes.  And chemtrails.  (Check it out.)
Here’s the thing.  President Obama has joined the clamor for controlling guns, surrounded by weeping mothers and fathers who cannot sit idly by when 20 children are killed with a semi-automatic rifle.  Being president, Obama knows the true background for this, as does Mayor Bloomberg, and the people on the top rungs of the New York Times who are going along with it even though it is totally hokey.  They cannot claim stupidity.
The people can be steered by a president’s emotional speech, or a newspaper’s reports about what happened.  We know you can’t trust most presidents, or most politicians, or most news outlets beyond a certain point.  But when the subject is possessing a firearm under the Second Amendment, and you hear all these ideas for gun control which we know build a foundation in formation of a police state, the level of trust we end up with gives us a feeling as if there is a gun being stuck in our back as we speak.  We don’t know what they’re dumping on us from somebody’s tanker planes, or what country is really calling the shots in the Middle East where our last fakey president got us so scrambled.  And when the New York Times passes on grotesque lies accompanied by advice on how best to form a police state, we think we’d better start getting those well-regulated state militias formed.
*James Hanson is a native of Nebraska and graduate of Oberlin College. His first job was as reporter for the Defiance, Ohio Crescent-News.  Drafted, he was with the Korea Military Advisory Group (KMAG) 1952-1953.  His law degree is from the University of Michigan, where he learned the importance of well-drafted legislation.
For the Ohio Water Commission, born of the 1959 flood, Hanson assisted in creating an intelligent framework for water management.  He was legal advisor to the Director of Natural Resources, then legislative counsel for the Ohio Legislative Service Commission.
In private practice Hanson’s long-term representations were for environmental organizations such as the volunteer Water Management Association of Ohio and the Ohio Water Development Authority, bond-issuing agency for municipal sewer and water facilities.  The Wildlife Legislative Fund and the Wildlife Legislative Fund of America became his major clients, which he created under the direction of James H. Glass as the defenders of sportsmen’s interests in Ohio and wherever wildlife laws came under attack.  Their present successor is the U.S. Sportsmen’s Alliance.
Retired, Hanson was writing histories of immigration into Nebraska when he suddenly found himself duty-bound to concentrate on the flood of government falsehoods spilling over especially since 2001.