Libertarian Party picks Barr as presidential candidate

The Libertarian Party on Sunday picked former Republican Rep. Bob Barr to be its presidential candidate after six rounds of balloting.

Barr beat research scientist Mary Ruwart, who also sought the party’s presidential nomination unsuccessfully in 1983, on the final ballot. The vote was 324-276.

Barr endorsed Wayne Allyn Root, who was eliminated in the fifth round, to be his vice-presidential nominee.

Barr left the GOP in 2006 over what he called bloated spending and civil liberties intrusions by the Bush administration.

The former Georgia congressman said he’s not in the race to be a spoiler.

“I’m a competitor and I’m in this to win. I do not view the role of the Libertarian Party to be a spoiler and I certainly have no intention of being a spoiler,” Barr said.

Barr said he expects the party to be on the ballot in at least 48 states and perhaps all 50 if the party can qualify in West Virginia and Oklahoma. Barr said he also expects to be invited to the national political debates by qualifying with poll support of 15 percent or more of registered voters.

Sunday’s election also marked the end of the latest chapter in the political career of Mike Gravel, a former senator from Alaska who recently dropped out of the Democratic presidential race.

“I just ended my political career,” he said. “From 15 years old to now, my political career is over, and it’s no big deal. I’m a writer, I’m a lecturer, I’m going to push the issues of freedom and liberty. I’m going to push those issues until the day I die.”

Gravel left the Democratic Party after he was excluded from some Democratic debates because he failed to meet fundraising or polling thresholds. He said the Democratic Party no longer represented his values because it continues to sustain Iraq war, the military-industrial complex and imperialism.

(This version CORRECTS that Ruwart was not party’s presidential nominee in 1983 or vice presidential nominee in 1992.)

By STEVEN K. PAULSON,
Associated Press Writer
Sun May 25, 7:33 PM ET

Source: AP

Titanic search was cover for secret Cold War subs mission

Actors Leonardo DiCaprio (L) and Kate Winslet (R) in a scene from the movie
Actors Leonardo DiCaprio and Kate Winslet in a scene from the movie Titanic

The man who located the wreck of the Titanic has revealed that the discovery was a cover story to camouflage the real mission of inspecting the wrecks of two Cold War nuclear submarines.

When Bob Ballard led a team that pinpointed the wreckage of the liner in 1985 he had already completed his main task of finding out what happened to USS Thresher and USS Scorpion.

Both of the United States Navy vessels sank during the 1960s, killing more than 200 men and giving rise to fears that at least one of them, Scorpion, had been sunk by the USSR.

Dr Ballard, an oceanographer, has admitted that he located and inspected the wrecks for the US Navy in top secret missions before he was allowed to search for the Titanic.

Only once he had used his new underwater robot craft to map the submarine wreck sites was he able to use it to crisscross the North Atlantic seabed to pinpoint the last resting place of the luxury liner. It meant he had only 12 days to find the Titanic.

“I couldn’t tell anybody,” he said. “There was a lot of pressure on me. It was a secret mission. I felt it was a fair exchange for getting a chance to look for the Titanic.

“We handed the data to the experts. They never told us what they concluded – our job was to collect the data. I can only talk about it now because it has been declassified.”

Dr Ballard said what he had seen during the inspection of the wrecks gave him the idea of finding a trail of debris that would lead to the main sections of the Titanic. Thresher, had imploded deep beneath the surface and had broken up into thousands of pieces and Scorpion was almost as completely destroyed. “It was as though it had been put through a shredding machine. There was a long debris trail.” Dr Ballard developed a robotic submarine craft in the early 1980s and approached the US Navy in 1982 for funding to search for the Titanic, which sank in 1912 with the loss of 1,500 lives after hitting an iceberg.

He was told that the military were not willing to spend a fortune on locating the liner, but they did want to know what had happened to their submarines.The military were anxious to know how the nuclear reactors had been affected by being submerged for so long.

Read moreTitanic search was cover for secret Cold War subs mission

Student researching al-Qaida tactics held for six days

· Lecturers fear threat to academic freedom
· Manual downloaded from US government website

A masters student researching terrorist tactics who was arrested and detained for six days after his university informed police about al-Qaida-related material he downloaded has spoken of the “psychological torture” he endured in custody.

Despite his Nottingham University supervisors insisting the materials were directly relevant to his research, Rizwaan Sabir, 22, was held for nearly a week under the Terrorism Act, accused of downloading the materials for illegal use.

The student had obtained a copy of the al-Qaida training manual from a US government website for his research into terrorist tactics.The case highlights what lecturers are claiming is a direct assault on academic freedom led by the government which, in its attempt to establish a “prevent agenda” against terrorist activity, is putting pressure on academics to become police informers.

Sabir was arrested on May 14 after the document was found by a university staff member on an administrator’s computer. The administrator, Hisham Yezza, an acquaintance of Sabir, had been asked by the student to print the 1,500-page document because Sabir could not afford the printing fees. The pair were arrested under the Terrorism Act, Sabir’s family home was searched and their computer and mobile phones seized. They were released uncharged six days later but Yezza, who is Algerian, was immediately rearrested on unrelated immigration charges and now faces deportation.

Read moreStudent researching al-Qaida tactics held for six days

Washington State Residents the Most Recent Victims of Homeland Security

According to the news articles linked to below, the Department of Homeland Security has continued the expansion of its un-American enforcement activities by directing them against Washington State residents utilizing Northwest domestic Ferry services.

Specifically, Border Patrol Agents have established suspicionless checkpoints at domestic Ferry terminals servicing the residents of the San Juan Islands off the coast of Washington. The islands are part of Washington State and island inhabitants are Washington State residents.

Despite the fact that the Ferry services in question never cross an international border, this hasn’t deterred Homeland Security agents from directing scarce ‘security’ resources against Washington State residents absent reasonable suspicion of wrongdoing. Thus proving once again that DHS either has no clue on how to defend the ‘Homeland’ or no intention of doing so.

Rather the specter of terrorism and illegal immigration are used as excuses for the continued expansion of federal influence and control at the expense of the founding principles of this country.

While recent events in Washington State are being mimicked in one form or another in border states across the country, I’d like to bring attention to a quote from attorney Matt Adams of the Northwest Immigration Rights Project:

They can ask you where you’re from; they can ask you to show your papers or to show your driver’s license or to show your birth certificate — but you don’t have to provide that information,” Adams says.

Because these checkpoints are not on the border, people have a greater right to privacy, Adams says.

“What I suggest to individuals is to politely refuse to answer questions, and then if they still don’t let you go, to say ‘Am I under arrest? If I’m not under arrest, I’d like to continue on my way,’ ” he says.

Words we all need to take to heart as ‘Homeland Security’ intrusion continues to grow in our daily lives.

Putting a stop to the burgeoning American police state will not happen from the top down. It will only happen when enough individuals decide to take individual action in common cause.

Several recent articles detailing this story appear below along with links back to the original websites:

Read moreWashington State Residents the Most Recent Victims of Homeland Security

The Real Life Ministry Of Love Is Being Built

The federal government is continuing the incremental agenda to build a Ministry of Love styled detention camp system for the American people. According to a report from the Los Angeles Times, the Immigration and Customs Enforcement Agency or ICE is building three new detention camps in the United States. The detention facilities will be minimum-security residential facilities that the federal government says will be used to house illegal aliens. Considering that the majority of the American people are against illegal immigration and just want immigrants to come into the country legally, most people will believe that this is a reasonable step to solve the illegal immigration problem. Unfortunately, this is really nothing more than a phony solution to solve a problem that has been created by government policies that have been implemented to encourage the illegal alien problem. The federal government is using the illegal immigration problem as an excuse to build the detention camp apparatus that is really meant for the American people. This is pretty obvious considering Rex 84, the Army’s Civilian Inmate Labor Program, the preservation of detention camps for Japanese Americans used during World War II and additional detention facilities built by KBR. Building a series of detention facilities is not going to resolve the illegal immigration problem with an administration that has supported policies to ensure as many illegal aliens enter the country as possible. As the economy unravels and as more and more people begin to protest against this criminal government, the establishment will need these detention facilities to lock up large numbers of Americans.

Recently in Waterloo Iowa, the federal government through ICE and FEMA built a temporary detention facility on the National Cattle Congress fairgrounds to round up a group of illegal aliens working in the area. Rounding up a few hundred illegal aliens does absolutely nothing to reverse the long standing policies that created the illegal immigration problem in the first place. In fact, all they are doing to the illegal aliens they round up is to process them through their temporary FEMA camp. This is clearly not an effective way to stop illegal immigration. Under the guise of solving the illegal immigration issue they are simply having their people go through the motions in order to practice the deployment of a FEMA camp and the processing of live test subjects through the FEMA camp.

According to a report from Radar Magazine, top secret continuity of government operations includes a database called Main Core which contains a list of 8 million Americans. During a national emergency, people in this database could be arrested and detained by government authorities. In 2007, George W. Bush signed National Security Presidential Directive 51 which gives the president authority over all three branches of government during a catastrophic emergency. The Bush administration has also refused to reveal details on specific details of continuity of government operations to the U.S. House Homeland Security Committee. Perhaps the Main Core database and the plans to round up American citizens listed in this database during a national emergency is one of the reasons why they are keeping these details secret.

FEMA has also announced that they are expanding a program to transport a large number of American citizens using trains during an emergency. This is the same method that the Nazis used to transport large numbers of Jews and political dissidents to their death camps.

Read moreThe Real Life Ministry Of Love Is Being Built

Government Insider: Bush Authorized 9/11 Attacks

Keep in mind when reading this, that the man being interviewed is no two-bit internet conspiracy buff.

Stanley Hilton was a senior advisor to Sen Bob Dole (R) and has personally known Rumsfeld and Wolfowitz for decades. This courageous man has risked his professional reputation, and possibly his life, to get this information out to people.

The following is from his latest visit to Alex Jones’ radio show.

Note: All honor to Stanley Hilton for risking his life so that we may know the truth of 9/11.

The Bush Junta Unmasked

“This (9/11) was all planned. This was a government-ordered operation. Bush personally signed the order. He personally authorized the attacks. He is guilty of treason and mass murder.” –Stanley Hilton

Alex Jones interview of Stanley Hilton, attorney for 911 taxpayers’ lawsuit

AJ: He is back with us. He is former Bob Dole’s chief of staff, very successful counselor, lawyer. He represents hundreds of the victims families of 9/11. He is suing Bush for involvement in 9/11. Now a major Zogby poll out – half of New Yorkers think the government was involved in 9/11. And joining us for the next 35 minutes, into the next hour, is Stanley Hilton. Stanley, it’s great to have you on with us.

SH: Glad to be on.

AJ: We’ll have to recap this when we start the next hour, but just in a nutshell, you have a lawsuit going, you’ve deposed a lot of military officers. You know the truth of 9/11. Just in a nutshell, what is your case alleging?

SH: Our case is alleging that Bush and his puppets Rice and Cheney and Mueller and Rumsfeld and so forth, Tenet, were all involved not only in aiding and abetting and allowing 9/11 to happen but in actually ordering it to happen. Bush personally ordered it to happen. We have some very incriminating documents as well as eye-witnesses, that Bush personally ordered this event to happen in order to gain political advantage, to pursue a bogus political agenda on behalf of the neocons and their deluded thinking in the Middle East. I also wanted to point out that, just quickly, I went to school with some of these neocons. At the University of Chicago, in the late 60s with Wolfowitz and Feith and several of the others and so I know these people personally. And we used to talk about this stuff all of the time. And I did my senior thesis on this very subject – how to turn the U.S. into a presidential dictatorship by manufacturing a bogus Pearl Harbor event. So, technically this has been in the planning at least 35 years.

AJ: That’s right. They were all Straussian followers of a Nazi-like professor. And now they are setting it up here in America. Stanley, I know you deposed a lot of people and you’ve got your $7 million dollar lawsuit with hundreds of the victim’s families involved.

SH: 7 billion, 7 billion

AJ: Yeah, 7 billion. Can you go over some of the new and incriminating evidence you’ve got of them ordering the attack?

Read moreGovernment Insider: Bush Authorized 9/11 Attacks

U.S. Will Attack Iran

Israel’s Army Radio is reporting that President Bush intends to launch a military strike against Iran before the end of his term.

The Army Radio, a network operated by the Israeli Defense Forces, quoted a government source in Jerusalem. The source disclosed that a senior official close to Bush said in a closed meeting that Bush and Vice President Dick Cheney believed military action against Iran was now called for.

Bush concluded a trip to Israel last week, where he said, “The objective of the United States must be to . . . support our strongest ally and friend in the Middle East.”

The Radio report, which was quoted by the Jerusalem Post, disclosed that the recent turmoil in Lebanon, where the Iranian-backed group Hezbollah had seized virtual control of the country, was encouraging an American attack.

Hezbollah’s aggression in Lebanon is seen as evidence of Iranian President Mahmoud Ahmadinejad’s growing influence, and the U.S. official said that in Bush’s view, “the disease must be treated, not its symptoms,” according to the Post.

The White House on Tuesday denied the Army Radio report, saying in a statement: “As the president has said, no president of the United States should ever take options off the table, but our preference and our actions for dealing with this matter remain through peaceful diplomatic means. Nothing has changed in that regard.”

However, numerous signs point to a U.S. strike on Iran in the near future:

# A leading member of America’s Jewish community told Newsmax in April that a military strike on Iran was likely and that Vice President Cheney’s March trip through the Middle East came in preparation for the U.S. attack.

# The Air Force recently declared the B-2 bomber fleet – a critical weapons system in any U.S. attack on Iran – as airworthy again. The Air Force had halted B-2 flights after a February crash in Guam. As Newsmax reported, the Air Force has refitted its stealth bombers to carry 30,000-pound “bunker buster” bombs, needed to destroy Iran’s hardened nuclear facilities.

# A second U.S. aircraft carrier, the USS Abraham Lincoln, joined the carrier USS Harry S. Truman in the Persian Gulf in May, carrying far more weaponry and ammunition than on previous deployments.

# Israel is gearing up for war. In April, it conducted its largest homeland military exercises ever. The Jewish-American source said Israel is “preparing for heavy casualties,” expecting to be the target of Iranian retribution following the U.S. attack.

# Saudi Arabia is taking steps to prepare for possible radioactive contamination from U.S. destruction of Iran’s nuclear facilities. The Saudi government reportedly approved nuclear fallout preparations a day after Cheney met with the kingdom’s highest-ranking officials.

# The USS Ross, an Aegis-class destroyer, has taken up station off the coast of Lebanon. Military observers speculate it is there to help defend Israel from missile attacks.

Adm. Michael Mullen, the chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff, said at a recent Pentagon briefing that the Iranians are systematically importing and training Shiite militia fighters, who slip back across the Iraqi border to kill American troops.

And Israeli intelligence has predicted that Iran will acquire its first nuclear device in 2009, much earlier than previous U.S. estimates.

Tuesday, May 20, 2008 12:40 PM
By: Newsmax Staff

Source: Newsmax.com

Pentagon Cannot Account for For $15 Billion

The inspector general for the Defense Department said yesterday that the Pentagon cannot account for almost $15 billion worth of goods and services ranging from trucks, bottled water and mattresses to rocket-propelled grenades and machine guns that were bought from contractors in the Iraq reconstruction effort.

The Pentagon did not have the proper documentation, including receipts, vouchers, signatures, invoices or other paperwork, for $7.8 billion that American and Iraqi contractors were paid for phones, folders, paint, blankets, Nissan trucks, laundry services and other items, according to a 69-page audit released to the House Committee on Oversight and Government Reform.

An earlier audit by the inspector general found deficiencies in accounting for $5.2 billion of U.S. payments to buy weapons, trucks, generators and other equipment for Iraq’s security forces. In addition, the Defense Department spent $1.8 billion of seized Iraqi assets with “absolutely no accountability,” according to Rep. Henry A. Waxman (D-Calif.), who chairs the oversight committee. The Pentagon also kept poor records on $135 million that it paid to its partners in the multinational military force in Iraq, auditors said.

Read morePentagon Cannot Account for For $15 Billion

Unmarked chopper patrols NY city from high above

On a cloudless spring day, the NYPD helicopter soars over the city, its sights set on the Statue of Liberty.

A dramatic close-up of Lady Liberty’s frozen gaze fills one of three flat-screen computer monitors mounted on a console. Hundreds of sightseers below are oblivious to the fact that a helicopter is peering down on them from a mile and a half away.

“They don’t even know we’re here,” said crew chief John Diaz, speaking into a headset over the din of the aircraft’s engine.

The helicopter’s unmarked paint job belies what’s inside: an arsenal of sophisticated surveillance and tracking equipment powerful enough to read license plates — or scan pedestrians’ faces — from high above the nation’s largest metropolis.

Police say the chopper’s sweeps of landmarks and other potential targets are invaluable in helping guard against another terrorist attack, providing a see-but-avoid-being-seen advantage against bad guys.

“It looks like just another helicopter in the sky,” said Assistant Police Chief Charles Kammerdener, who oversees the department’s aviation unit.

Police Commissioner Raymond Kelly has said that no other U.S. law enforcement agency “has anything that comes close” to the surveillance chopper, which was designed by engineers at Bell Helicopter and computer technicians based on NYPD specifications.

The chopper is named simply “23” — for the number of police officers killed in the Sept. 11, 2001, attacks.

The $10 million helicopter is just part of the department’s efforts to adopt cutting-edge technology for its counterterrorism operations.

The NYPD also plans to spend tens of millions of dollars strengthening security in the lower Manhattan business district with a network of closed-circuit television cameras and license-plate readers posted at bridges, tunnels and other entry points.

Police have also deployed hundreds of radiation monitors — some worn on belts like pagers, others mounted on cars and in helicopters — to detect dirty bombs.

Read moreUnmarked chopper patrols NY city from high above

War Abroad, Poverty at Home

The US Senate has voted $165 billion to fund Bush’s wars of aggression against Afghanistan and Iraq through next spring.

As the US is broke and deep in debt, every one of the $165 billion dollars will have to be borrowed. American consumers are also broke and deep in debt. Their zero saving rate means every one of the $165 billion dollars will have to be borrowed from foreigners.

The “world’s only superpower” is so broke it can’t even finance its own wars.

Each additional dollar that the irresponsible Bush Regime has to solicit from foreigners puts more downward pressure on the dollar’s value. During the eight wasted and extravagant years of the Bush Regime, the once mighty US dollar has lost about 60% of its value against the euro.

The dollar has lost even more of its value against gold and oil.

Before Bush began his wars of aggression, oil was $25 a barrel. Today it is $130 a barrel. Some of this rise may result from run-away speculation in the futures market. However, the main cause is the eroding value of the dollar. Oil is real, and unlike paper dollars is limited in supply. With US massive trade and budget deficits, the outpouring of dollar obligations mounts, thus driving down the value of the dollar.

Each time the dollar price of oil rises, the US trade deficit rises, requiring more foreign financing of US energy use. Bush has managed to drive the US oil import bill up from $106 billion in 2006 to approximately $500 billion 18 months later–every dollar of which has to be financed by foreigners.

Read moreWar Abroad, Poverty at Home