Iran withdraws $75 billion from Europe: report

TEHRAN (Reuters) – Iran has withdrawn around $75 billion from Europe to prevent the assets from being blocked under threatened new sanctions over Tehran’s disputed nuclear ambitions, an Iranian weekly said.

Western powers are warning the Islamic Republic of more punitive measures if it rejects an incentives offer and presses on with sensitive nuclear work, but the world’s fourth-largest oil exporter is showing no sign of backing down.

“Part of Iran’s assets in European banks have been converted to gold and shares and another part has been transferred to Asian banks,” Mohsen Talaie, deputy foreign minister in charge of economic affairs, was quoted as saying.

Iranian officials were not immediately available to comment on the report in Shahrvand-e Emrouz, a moderate weekly, which did not specify the time period for the withdrawals which it said were ordered by President Mahmoud Ahmadinejad.

“About $75 billion of Iran’s foreign assets which were under threat of being blocked were wired back to Iran based on Ahmadinejad’s order,” the weekly said.

Read moreIran withdraws $75 billion from Europe: report

Tech Crunch – Here’s Our New Policy On A.P. stories: They’re Banned


The stories over the weekend were bad enough – the Associated Press, with a long history of suing over quotations from their articles, went after Drudge Retort for having the audacity to link to their stories along with short quotations via reader submissions. Drudge Retort is doing nothing different than what Digg, TechMeme, Mixx and dozens of other sites do, and frankly the fact that they are being linked to should be considered a favor.

After heavy criticism over the last few days, the A.P. is in damage control mode, says the NYTimes, and retreating from their earlier position. But from what I read, they’re just pushing their case further.

They do not want people quoting their stories, despite the fact that such activity very clearly falls within the fair use exception to copyright law. They claim that the activity is an infringement.

A.P. vice president Jim Kennedy says they will issue guidelines telling bloggers what is acceptable and what isn’t, over and above what the law says is acceptable. They will “attempt to define clear standards as to how much of its articles and broadcasts bloggers and Web sites can excerpt without infringing on The A.P.’s copyright.”

Those that disregard the guidelines risk being sued by the A.P., despite the fact that such use may fall under the concept of fair use.

The A.P. doesn’t get to make it’s own rules around how its content is used, if those rules are stricter than the law allows. So even thought they say they are making these new guidelines in the spirit of cooperation, it’s clear that, like the RIAA and MPAA, they are trying to claw their way to a set of property rights that don’t exist today and that they are not legally entitled to. And like the RIAA and MPAA, this is done to protect a dying business model – paid content.

So here’s our new policy on A.P. stories: they don’t exist. We don’t see them, we don’t quote them, we don’t link to them. They’re banned until they abandon this new strategy, and I encourage others to do the same until they back down from these ridiculous attempts to stop the spread of information around the Internet.

June 16, 2008
Michael Arrington

Source: Tech Crunch

AP To Set Guidelines For Using Its Articles In Blogs

The Associated Press, one of the nation’s largest news organizations, said that it will, for the first time, attempt to define clear standards as to how much of its articles and broadcasts bloggers and Web sites can excerpt without infringing on The A.P.’s copyright.

The A.P.’s effort to impose some guidelines on the free-wheeling blogosphere, where extensive quoting and even copying of entire news articles is common, may offer a prominent definition of the important but vague doctrine of “fair use,” which holds that copyright owners cannot ban others from using small bits of their works under some circumstances. For example, a book reviewer is allowed to quote passages from the work without permission from the publisher.

Fair use has become an essential concept to many bloggers, who often quote portions of articles before discussing them. The A.P., a cooperative owned by 1,500 daily newspapers, including The New York Times, provides written articles and broadcast material to thousands of news organizations and Web sites that pay to use them.

Last week, The A.P. took an unusually strict position against quotation of its work, sending a letter to the Drudge Retort asking it to remove seven items that contained quotations from A.P. articles ranging from 39 to 79 words.

On Saturday, The A.P. retreated. Jim Kennedy, vice president and strategy director of The A.P., said in an interview that the news organization had decided that its letter to the Drudge Retort was “heavy-handed” and that The A.P. was going to rethink its policies toward bloggers.

The quick about-face came, he said, because a number of well-known bloggers started criticizing its policy, claiming it would undercut the active discussion of the news that rages on sites, big and small, across the Internet.

The Drudge Retort was initially started as a left-leaning parody of the much larger Drudge Report, run by the conservative muckraker Matt Drudge. In recent years, the Drudge Retort has become more of a social news site, similar to sites like Digg, in which members post links to news articles for others to comment on.

But Rogers Cadenhead, the owner of the Drudge Retort and several other Web sites, said the issue goes far beyond one site. “There are millions of people sharing links to news articles on blogs, message boards and sites like Digg. If The A.P. has concerns that go all the way down to one or two sentences of quoting, they need to tell people what they think is legal and where the boundaries are.”

On Friday, The A.P. issued a statement defending its action, saying it was going to challenge blog postings containing excerpts of A.P. articles “when we feel the use is more reproduction than reference, or when others are encouraged to cut and paste.” An A.P. spokesman declined Friday to further explain the association’s position.

After that, however, the news association convened a meeting of its executives at which it decided to suspend its efforts to challenge blogs until it creates a more thoughtful standard.

Read moreAP To Set Guidelines For Using Its Articles In Blogs

Flawed St. John’s Wort Study on ADHD Failed to Use Active Form of Herbal Extract

(NaturalNews) On the heels of shocking revelations that top psychiatric research Dr. Joseph Biederman secretly took $1.6 million from drug companies while conducting psychotropic drug experiments on children, it has been learned that Dr. Biederman is now one of the key collaborators behind the latest efforts to discredit St. John’s Wort. In a study published in the Journal of the American Medical Association and widely reported in the mainstream media, Dr. Biederman and fellow cohorts “concluded” that the St. John’s Wort herb is useless in treating ADHD in children.

What’s astonishing about this study, as you’ll learn in this article, is that all the children used in the study were given inactive forms of the St. John’s Wort herb where the active ingredients had been oxidized and rendered useless! In other words, this clinical trial, which was widely reported in the mainstream media with headlines like “St. John’s Wort Found Useless!” didn’t test the herb’s active ingredients at all! It sort of makes you wonder about the agenda of the people running the study, doesn’t it?

Keep in mind that one of the study’s authors, Dr. Biederman, is not merely on the take from drug companies that sell competing pharmaceuticals, but that he also lied about how much money he was being paid by drug companies, hiding the truth about his income by underreporting $1.6 million he took from psychiatric drug companies. See my report on that here: http://www.naturalnews.com/023408.html

Dr. Biederman has a clear financial interest in promoting patented prescription drugs for brain chemistry disorders while discrediting competing natural alternatives such as St. John’s Wort. This blatant conflict of interest was not disclosed by JAMA, nor was it mentioned in the text of the study on ADHD and St. John’s Wort. It appears Dr. Biederman would prefer his financial ties to Big Pharma continue to remain secret, even while producing questionable studies that desperately attempt to show that herbs don’t work.

Testing Herbs to Treat Fictitious Diseases

Read moreFlawed St. John’s Wort Study on ADHD Failed to Use Active Form of Herbal Extract

California Begins Poisoning Millions with Toxic Synthetic Fluoride Chemicals

Related articles and videos:
Health Professionals Call for End to Water Fluoridation
Over 1,600 Professionals Call for an End to Fluoridation of Drinking Water

Professional Perspectives: Fluoride in Tap Water

Fluoride, Aspartame and Agenda 21

David Icke on Aspartame, Fluoride,…

(NaturalNews)Fluoride is now being added to the water systems of Los Angeles and San Diego, in spite of the substance’s classification as a toxin by the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA)

Fluoride refers to any compound made with the element fluorine, one of the most reactive elements known. Because fluorine reacts easily with other chemicals, it is widely used in industrial applications such as metal manufacture, glass, ceramics, Teflon, pesticide, rat poison and the manufacturing of nuclear weapons.

The EPA limits the fluoride content of water to four milligrams per liter, and suggests 0.8 milligrams per liter as the optimum concentration. But the National Academy of Sciences’ National Research Council has said that 10 to 20 years of exposure to 10 to 20 milligrams of fluoride per day may result in “crippling skeletal fluorosis.” At the EPA’s maximum concentration, this could be achieved by drinking less than three liters of water per day.

Because fluoride builds up in the body, longer exposure to lower levels of fluoride can lead to the same effects.

In spite of early studies implicating fluoride as a toxin, the United States began adding it to public water supplies in the 1940s. Fluoridation of Southern California’s water supply was discussed and defeated by citizen opposition in 1966, 1968 and 1975. But in the late 1990s, Los Angeles began adding fluoride to the water. San Diego’s Metropolitan Water District followed in December 2007.

Water fluoridation has been controversial from its inception, with critics pointing out that while dental associations claim that fluoride strengthens tooth enamel on contact, adding the substance to water exposes people on a systemic level.

A number of studies have linked ingestion of fluoride to neurological and skeletal effects, including causing brain and thyroid damage and bone cancer in adolescent boys. Recent research has found a number of fluoride compounds to be endocrine disruptors, which mimic the body’s hormones with the potential for serious reproductive and developmental harm.

Sunday, June 15, 2008
by: David Gutierrez

Source: Natural News

Oklahoma Declares Sovereignty

STATE OF OKLAHOMA
2nd Session of the 51st Legislature (2008)
HOUSE JOINT RESOLUTION 1089

By: Key
AS INTRODUCED

A Joint Resolution claiming sovereignty under the Tenth Amendment to the Constitution of the United States over certain powers; serving notice to the federal government to cease and desist certain mandates; and directing distribution.

WHEREAS, the Tenth Amendment to the Constitution of the United States reads as follows:

“The powers not delegated to the United States by the Constitution, nor prohibited by it to the States, are reserved to the States respectively, or to the people.”; and

WHEREAS, the Tenth Amendment defines the total scope of federal power as being that specifically granted by the Constitution of the United States and no more; and

WHEREAS, the scope of power defined by the Tenth Amendment means that the federal government was created by the states specifically to be an agent of the states; and

WHEREAS, today, in 2008, the states are demonstrably treated as agents of the federal government; and

WHEREAS, many federal mandates are directly in violation of the Tenth Amendment to the Constitution of the United States; and

WHEREAS, the United States Supreme Court has ruled in New York v. United States, 112 S. Ct. 2408 (1992), that Congress may not simply commandeer the legislative and regulatory processes of the states; and

WHEREAS, a number of proposals from previous administrations and some now pending from the present administration and from Congress may further violate the Constitution of the United States.

NOW, THEREFORE, BE IT RESOLVED BY THE HOUSE OF REPRESENTATIVES AND THE SENATE OF THE 2ND SESSION OF THE 51ST OKLAHOMA LEGISLATURE:

THAT the State of Oklahoma hereby claims sovereignty under the Tenth Amendment to the Constitution of the United States over all powers not otherwise enumerated and granted to the federal government by the Constitution of the United States.

THAT this serves as Notice and Demand to the federal government, as our agent, to cease and desist, effective immediately, mandates that are beyond the scope of these constitutionally delegated powers.

THAT a copy of this resolution be distributed to the President of the United States, the President of the United States Senate, the Speaker of the United States House of Representatives, the Speaker of the House and the President of the Senate of each state’s legislature of the United States of America, and each member of the Oklahoma Congressional Delegation.

http://www.okhouse.gov/51LEG/Leg_Votesxx.aspx?include=okh01983.txt

http://webserver1.lsb.state.ok.us/2007-08HB/HJR1089_int.rtf

Posted on June 14, 2008
by Barbara Peterson

Source: Speak Truth To Power

McCain: Habeas Corpus a Privilege not a Right

By now, it is widely known that the Supreme Court has weighed in on the debate over the rights of the prisoners at Gitmo. The court has stated that the detainees’ habeas corpus rights (the protection against an indefinite detention without charges and a trial) ought to be respected.

Referring to the human beings who are still being detained at Guantanamo Bay, McCain stated, “These are people who are not citizens. They do not and never have been given the rights that citizens in this country have” (emphasis added).

So our rights are given to us? Interesting.

I might ask McCain at the out-set, since you apparently believe that only citizens have rights (presumably “given” to them in the Constitution) where exactly in text of the Constitution does the Constitution give this right the right of habeas corpus?

You won’t find it. The Constitution only puts limits on the removal of habeas corpus, which implies that human beings possess this right naturally, and that habeas corpus is not some peculiar civil privilege, such as welfare, or some right that only citizens have, such as voting in our elections.

Similarly, human beings possess the rights in the Bill of Rights naturally, and as such, government is prevented from infringing upon them in the first ten amendments to the Constitution. But the rights are not granted by the government or the Constitution; we already had the rights as human beings!

I recommend that McCain read the Declaration of Independence. He has admitted that he is ignorant of economics, so perhaps he needs to brush up on his political theory and History, as well.

The Declaration of Independence declares the self-evident truth that God gave us our rights and that we are “endowed by our creator” with “unalienable rights,” such as, “life, liberty, and the pursuit of happiness.”

Unalienable. Can’t be taken away. God-given natural rights. This is extremely important. Pay attention.

You see, if governments have “given” you “rights,” well then guess who can take them away at their will. Governments! McCain’s dangerous philosophy of rights as privileges is a recipe for tyranny. Government gives us our liberty? Is he serious? Well then that makes the state our god.

Read moreMcCain: Habeas Corpus a Privilege not a Right

US soldier refuses to report for active duty in Iraq

A month after US army reservist Matthis Chiroux publicly refused to deploy to Iraq, the former sergeant on Sunday set himself up for possible prosecution by failing to report for active duty with his unit in South Carolina.

“Tonight at midnight, I may face further action from the army for refusing to reactivate to participate in the Iraq occupation,” Chiroux told reporters in Washington.

“I stand here today in defense of those who have been stripped of their voices in this occupation, the warriors of this nation…”, Chiroux read from a statement as his father Rob, who had travelled to Washington from Alabama to support his son on Father’s Day, stood beside him.

Last month, Chiroux rejected an order calling him back to active duty in Iraq, saying he considers the war “illegal and unconstitutional.”

Chiroux served five years in the army, with tours in Afghanistan, Japan, Germany and the Philippines.

He was honorably discharged last year and was placed in the Individual Ready Reserves (IRR), a pool of former soldiers who can be “reactivated” in a national emergency or war.

Prior to the Iraq war, IRR members were rarely recalled to active duty, according to the Military Times, an independent newspaper for members of the US armed forces and their families.

“Many believed they never would be called — but when the army found itself stretched by unexpected combat demands in Iraq in the summer of 2004 it began issuing mobilization orders,” Military Times wrote in an article published a year ago on Sunday.

According to the paper, hundreds of IRR members “refused to report or simply ignored their mailed mobilization orders.”

Matthis’ father Rob, a rocket scientist who lives in the army town of Huntsville, Alabama, said mobilizing IRR members was a form of back-door draft.

“If our country is in such a dire emergency that we need to conscript manpower, congress has to vote to reinstate the draft,” the elder Chiroux told AFP.

“But they won’t do that because if congress said we need to bring back the general draft, the war in Iraq would be resolved very quickly,” he said.

“Moms and dads, who represent millions and millions of voters, would say: wait a minute — you want to draft my kid? Iraq’s got to stop.”

Read moreUS soldier refuses to report for active duty in Iraq

US needs 100 years to recover from Bush

It will take the the United States a century to recover from the damage wreaked by President George W Bush, US writer Gore Vidal said in an interview published today.

“The president behaved like a virtual criminal but we didn’t have the courage to sack him for fear of violating the American constitution,” Mr Vidal told the El Mundo newspaper.

The author, a trenchant critic of the US-led invasion of Iraq, said it would take the United States 100 years to repair the damage caused by Bush.

“We live in a dictatorship. We have a fascist government …which controls the media,” he said.

Mr Vidal also said presidential aspirant Barack Obama was intelligent and that it would be a novelty to have an intelligent person in the White House.

Read moreUS needs 100 years to recover from Bush

FEMA: It’s Not About Floods, It’s About Martial Law

“Indiana residents affected by Saturday’s flooding shouldn’t expect assistance from the Federal Emergency Management Agency any time soon, and perhaps not at all,” Michael Hampton writes for the Homeland Stupidity blog. If and when Gov. Mitch Daniels declares disaster, FEMA will “come to the rescue” by “setting up a phone number and web site for individuals to ask for assistance in the form of loans.” Short of a declaration and miles of red tape, Department of Homeland Security spokesman John Erickson told the Indy Star residents are basically on their own. Erickson said Hoosiers should “start the cleanup process and don’t wait for federal assistance at this point.”

Hampton adds: “You heard it straight from the FEMA spokesman’s mouth. Don’t wait for them. They might not even show up at all. Pray they don’t, or southern Indiana could wind up like New Orleans. Travel trailers, anyone?”

“In the current series of disasters,” writes Jim Kirwan, “there are no troops here to help with evacuations, and the only help that FEMA is currently offering to victims of the Iowa flooding is: ’save all your receipts, because you’ll need to prove what it cost you if you want any help after this is over.’”

“Indiana residents affected by Saturday’s flooding shouldn’t expect assistance from the Federal Emergency Management Agency any time soon, and perhaps not at all,” Michael Hampton writes for the Homeland Stupidity blog. If and when Gov. Mitch Daniels declares disaster, FEMA will “come to the rescue” by “setting up a phone number and web site for individuals to ask for assistance in the form of loans.” Short of a declaration and miles of red tape, Department of Homeland Security spokesman John Erickson told the Indy Star residents are basically on their own. Erickson said Hoosiers should “start the cleanup process and don’t wait for federal assistance at this point.”

Hampton adds: “You heard it straight from the FEMA spokesman’s mouth. Don’t wait for them. They might not even show up at all. Pray they don’t, or southern Indiana could wind up like New Orleans. Travel trailers, anyone?”

“In the current series of disasters,” writes Jim Kirwan, “there are no [National Guard] troops here to help with evacuations, and the only help that FEMA is currently offering to victims of the Iowa flooding is: ’save all your receipts, because you’ll need to prove what it cost you if you want any help after this is over.’”

As Allen Roland writes for Salon blogs, reposted on the Global Research website, “the real purpose of FEMA is to not only protect the government but to be its principal vehicle for martial law” and this is why “FEMA could not respond immediately to the Hurricane Katrina disaster — humanitarian efforts were no longer part of its job description under the Department of Homeland Security.”

It appears Hurricane Katrina also provided FEMA with an excuse to “dry run” its unconstitutional powers in New Orleans, rounding up “refugees” (now called “evacuees”) and “relocating” them in various camps. “Some evacuees are being treated as ‘internees’ by FEMA,” writes former NSA employee Wayne Madsen.

In fact, as Steve Watson noted in the wake of Katrina, FEMA deliberately sabotaged relief efforts in New Orleans. “Former Assistant Secretary of the Treasury, Paul Craig Roberts has agreed that FEMA has deliberately withheld aid, and cut emergency communication lines, and automatically made the crisis look worse in order to empower the image of a police state emerging to ’save the day’. He even insinuated that the shoot to kill policy was part of the overall operation in order get an awful precedence set to aid the military industrial complex takeover of America.” FEMA, Watson adds, is nothing short of a “federalized front group for the corrupt money hoarding Department of Homeland Security, the Orwellian titled agency that has nothing to do with security and everything to do with limiting the freedoms of people all over the country.”

In other words, as cruel as it may sound, the flood ravaged people of Indiana and other states in the Midwest are better off without a declaration of disaster and FEMA “assistance.”

As DHS spokesman John Erickson hinted and Allen Roland underscored, assisting people during natural disasters ranks low on FEMA’s list of responsibilities. As Harry V. Martin wrote in 1995, after FEMA “dropped the ball” in the wake of Hurricane Andrew, Congress commenced a study of the agency and discovered “FEMA was spending 12 times more for ‘black operations’ than for disaster relief.”

It spent $1.3 billion building secret bunkers throughout the United States in anticipation of government disruption by foreign or domestic upheaval. Yet fewer than 20 members of Congress , only members with top security clearance, know of the $1.3 billion expenditure by FEMA for non-natural disaster situations. These few Congressional leaders state that FEMA has a “black curtain” around its operations. FEMA has worked on National Security programs since 1979, and its predecessor, the Federal Emergency Preparedness Agency, has secretly spent millions of dollars before being merged into FEMA by President Carter in 1979.

Operation Cable Splicer, Garden Plot, and REX 84 (short for Readiness Exercise 1984) are programs long on the shelf, awaiting the appropriate “disaster” to be taken down and implemented. Garden Plot is a program designed to control the population, while Cable Splicer is a program engineered for an orderly takeover of state and local governments by the federal government. FEMA is the executive arm of the coming police state and will head up operations. The Presidential Executive Orders already listed on the Federal Register also are part of the legal framework for this operation, and include the following:

10990 (allows the government to take over all modes of transportation and control of highways and seaports), 10995 (allows the government to seize and control the communication media), 10997 (allows the government to take over all electrical power, gas, petroleum, fuels and minerals), 10998 (allows the government to take over all food resources and farms), 11000 (allows the government to mobilize civilians into work brigades under government supervision), 11001 (allows the government to take over all health, education and welfare functions), 11002 (designates the Postmaster General to operate a national registration of all persons), 11003 (allows the government to take over all airports and aircraft, including commercial aircraft), 11004 (allows the Housing and Finance Authority to relocate communities, build new housing with public funds, designate areas to be abandoned, and establish new locations for populations) and 11005 (allows the government to take over railroads, inland waterways and public storage facilities).

More recently, the National Defense Authorization Act, under Sect. 1042, allows the use of “the Armed Forces in Major Public Emergencies” and explicitly gives the executive the power to invoke martial law – in other words, kiss Posse Comitatus good-bye. For the first time in more than a century, the president is now authorized to use the military in response to “a natural disaster, a disease outbreak, a terrorist attack or any other condition in which the President determines that domestic violence has occurred to the extent that state officials cannot maintain public order,” Lewis Seiler and Dan Hamburg wrote for the San Francisco Chronicle in February. Add to this the Military Commissions Act of 2006 and National Security Presidential Directive 51, allowing for “continuity of government” in the event of what NSPD-5 vaguely calls a “catastrophic emergency,” and the framework is in place for the imposition of martial law.

As a recent example of the sort of activity FEMA is engaged in, as they tell flood victims in the Midwest to fend for themselves, consider the $22 million per year the agency has spent “on a terror training program within a real town in New Mexico where helicopters buzz overhead in the middle of the night, mock nuclear explosions are drilled and ’suicide bombers’ are taken down by SWAT teams who pull citizens out of their homes,” writes Steve Watson. The Associated Press (see video) deems such events “unthinkable,” and indeed they are, while floods and hurricanes are a reality.

FEMA has very little to do with the sort of natural disasters the people of Iowa, Wisconsin, and Indiana are currently experiencing and everything to do with martial law, thus DHS boss Chertoff’s satisfaction “with the federal response to the massive Midwest flooding” is little more than a dog and pony show, a public relations gimmick slapped over the real face of FEMA.

Kurt Nimmo
Infowars
June 15, 2008

Source: Infowars