statism watch

Archive for January 31st, 2010

Pakistani Taliban leader reportedly killed in U.S. strike

Sunday, January 31st, 2010

Who knows if this is true or not? Who knows if Hakimullah Mehsud is (or was) a puppet of the occupying forces, as has been reported of his predecessor, Baitullah Mehsud? This must be what is referred to as the ‘fog of war’. One thing is for certain – it is extremely difficult to trust the media, which in wartime especially operates on a set of principles Noam Chomsky and Edward S. Herman proposed in the 1980s – the propaganda model of the media. The truth, when it can be discerned, must be arrived at by a close reading and comparison of multiple stories in the attempt to abstract out bias.

Flashback: Killer of CIA agents in Afghanistan called for revenge for Baitullah Mehsud | Pakistani militant leader dead: Taliban | Whistleblower Who Linked “Taliban” Leader To US Intelligence Is Assassinated | Pakistani president Asif Zardari admits creating terrorist groups | Western Governments Funding Taliban & Al-Qaeda To Kill U.S. Troops, Destabilize Countries | The Main Result of the “War on Terror”: The Destabilization of Pakistan | Report: CIA runs secret bases in Pakistan | Key Benazir Bhutto assassination witness shot dead | CIA, Pakistani ISI have long, complicated relationship | US Allowed Taliban, Al-Qaeda Airlift Evacuation

CBC News
January 31, 2010

The Pakistani army said Sunday it is investigating reports that Pakistani Taliban leader Hakimullah Mehsud died from injuries sustained in a U.S. drone missile strike in mid-January.

The militant leader’s death would be an important success for both Pakistan, which has been battling the Pakistani Taliban, and the U.S., which blames Mehsud for a recent deadly bombing against the CIA in Afghanistan.

The army’s disclosure came shortly after Pakistani state television, citing unnamed “official sources,” reported that Mehsud died in Orakzai, an area in Pakistan’s northwest tribal region where he was reportedly being treated for his injuries.

“We have these reports coming to us,” army spokesman Gen. Athar Abbas told The Associated Press. “We are investigating whether it is true or wrong.”


Global Bank Insurance Levy Wins Support over Transaction Tax at Davos

Sunday, January 31st, 2010

These people are desperate to find some way to implement an international tax to fund an inflated mandate for the IMF – the ‘New Bretton Woods‘ Brown is fond of invoking. In this case, the idea being floated is a sort of international FDIC. The form and the means of the tax is simple pretext, a question of pragmatism in service of globalist ideology. StatismWatch has been compiling this unfolding narrative in as faithfully objective a manner as possible since before the economic crisis swept world markets. A centralization of banking power has been the plan from the beginning. Look:

Flashback: Harper urges G20 to follow economic accords | Bankers unite against Barack Obama and Gordon Brown in call for world regulation | IMF warns against retreat from stimulus spending | Banks find gaping loophole in Obama financial reforms | Obama talking tough with banks | EU urged to adopt bank supertax | Obama ponders bank transaction levy to recoup bailout shortfalls | Explosive Leaked Emails Expose Treasury Secretary Geithner’s Deception in ‘Backdoor Bailout’ | Final Copenhagen Text Includes Global Transaction Tax | EU calls for tax on bank transactions | UK: Brown takes campaign for Tobin tax to Commonwealth | UK: Brown proposes global fund to kick-start Copenhagen climate change process | Flaherty, USA say no to global financial tax, yes to continued ’stimulus’ at G20 | Bernanke continues pressing for sweeping new powers for Fed | IMF chief wants global bank tax | G20 nations meet as protests flare on issue of international banking regulation | IMF approves $13bn gold sale to boost lending fund | China Set to Buy $50 Billion in IMF Notes | China calls anew for super-sovereign currency | No one talking about dumping dollar: China minister | China explores buying $50bn in IMF bonds | Chinese economists deem huge holding of US bonds “risky” as Geithner visits | A Bigger, Bolder Role Is Imagined For the IMF | UK PM reveals G20 plan to boost IMF by $1 trillion, hails new world order (again) | UN & IMF Back Agenda For Global Financial Dictatorship | IMF poised to print billions of dollars in ‘global quantitative easing’ | Gordon Brown seeks sweeping reforms to give IMF global ’surveillance role’ | IMF may need to “print money”, act as “world’s central bank” as crisis spreads | Globalists Exploit Financial Meltdown In Move Towards One World Currency | World needs new Bretton Woods, says Brown | IMF prescribes state regulation of ‘global financial order’ | Bilderberg Seeks Bank Centralization Agenda | Banks face “new world order,” consolidation: report

Larry Elliot, Heather Stewart, The Observer
January 31, 2010

The prospects of a global tax on financial transactions were receding fast this weekend amid signs that countries were swinging behind an alternative plan to impose an insurance levy on banks.

Both David Cameron and Alistair Darling expressed support for Barack Obama’s proposals to force banks to pay into a fund that would provide compensation in the event of the failure of a financial institution.

Cameron said at the World Economic Forum summit at Davos that he thought a so-called Tobin tax was unworkable because of a lack of international support, but said he would back an insurance levy if he became prime minister in this spring’s election. “We would work for a new international levy on banks — one of the ideas being considered by the IMF — to protect the taxpayer from footing the bill for banking crises,” the Conservative leader said.

The chancellor said he was working with the US on a permanent insurance levy, an idea the Treasury believes will win more support than a Tobin tax. “We are keen to work on a plan on this with other countries,” Darling added.


Consumer debt loads are the new concern

Sunday, January 31st, 2010

Flashback: ‘Significant chance’ of second financial crisis, warns World Economic Forum | Idle job market hurting recovery, Flaherty warns | No new stimulus, economy ’stabilized’: Harper | America slides deeper into depression as Wall Street revels | U.S. jobless claims drop again | US Bankers Get $4 Trillion Gift From Barney Frank | Taibbi: Obama’s sellout to Wall Street creates ‘permanent bailout’ | Economic picture still not very bright, and more layoffs are in store, manufacturers say | How Goldman secretly bet on the U.S. housing crash | Goldman Sachs breaks record with $16.7bn bonus pot | U.S. unemployment claims spike | Credit card debt balloons | Unemployed to reach postwar high: OECD | Canada’s $1-trillion debt baby | More US Bank Failures and The Coming Deposit Insurance Bailout | Credit delinquencies up 24% in June | Bank of Canada declares recession over | Record quarterly profits and bonuses: Goldman Sachs makes out like a bandit on taxpayer’s dime | Budget officer ‘can’t tell’ if stimulus plan working | Taibbi: NYSE ends transparency to protect Goldman Sachs | Goldman Sachs: The Great American Bubble Machine | More Canadians in arrears on credit payments | Canadian households $1.3-trillion in debt | Credit card changes benefit families, Flaherty says | Credit companies seek to avoid regulation, create global debit system | Canadian credit card delinquencies rising | All maxed out? Budget measures would improve credit access | Now the consumer crunch: falling credit limits, rising interest rates | Bank of Canada adds $8B to credit markets | $25B credit backstop for banks ‘not a bailout’: Harper

Tara Perkins, The Globe and Mail
January 31, 2010

As rate hikes loom, the optimism consumers felt heading into this year is proving short lived

The optimism that consumers felt heading into this year was short-lived, and has been overcome by nagging concerns over their debt loads.

The economy is recovering its footing, thanks to consumers who provided it with a shoulder to lean on by taking advantage of exceptionally low interest rates to buy homes and other big-ticket items.

But the tables are set to turn. Policy makers are hoping that new strength in the economy will give consumers the support they need to straighten out their finances, even as interest rates inevitably begin to rise.

It’s an untested hypothesis. This is the first recession in which real credit, the amount of debt that people are taking on adjusted for inflation, has risen.

And growing anxiety about paying down debt suggests that the central bank’s ability to fuel the economy with ultra-low rates could lose steam if consumers retract from their borrowing binge.


Yemen rejects rebel’s ceasefire offer; bloodshed continues

Sunday, January 31st, 2010

Flashback: Pentagon to Send More Special Forces Troops to Yemen | Yemen forces ‘kill Al-Qaeda chief’ | ‘No intention’ to invade Yemen: Obama | American cash gives Yemen a reason to join the hunt for al-Qaeda | Britain, U.S. to fund Yemen anti-terror unit | Underwear Bomber’s Visa Had Expired, Say Yemeni Authorities | US plots retaliatory strikes against al-Qaida in Yemen over plane bomber | Officials Admit Second Man Detained As More Witnesses Emerge in ‘Underwear Bomb’ Case | Detroit bombing: US had received intelligence suggesting Nigerian was planning an attack | US jet plot suspect ‘was in Yemen in December’ | Obama vows to step up terror fight | U.S. quietly takes terror war to Yemen | ‘Al-Qaeda’ in Yemen claims responsibility for attack on plane | Britain ‘barred US air terror suspect’ | Flight 253 passenger: Sharp-dressed man aided terror suspect Umar Farouk Abdul Mutallab onto plane without passport | Father of Umar Farouk Abdul Mutallab, Nigerian terror suspect in Flight 253 attack, warned U.S. | British student held over alleged airline bomb attempt

Mohamed Ghobari and Ulf Laessing, Reuters
January 31, 2010

Northern rebels won’t accept all terms of truce, leaders of strife-torn country say

Yemen rejected a ceasefire offer from Shia rebels on Sunday and said fighting was continuing, as neighbouring Saudi Arabia accused the insurgents of mounting sniper attacks inside its territory.

The conflict with the northern rebels, who complain of social, religious and economic discrimination in the southern Arabian state, has rumbled on since 2004; but it intensified last year and drew in oil-rich Saudi Arabia.

Yemen is also struggling against al-Qaeda and southern secessionists, and Western powers fear it could become a failed state.

The U.S. State Department’s counter-terrorism chief was visiting Yemen on Sunday, state media reported, a week after Britain hosted a conference on how to stabilize the Arab world’s poorest country.


Israel denies Gaza war crimes in report to UN

Sunday, January 31st, 2010

Flashback: Chomsky says Israel, ‘US military base’ | Israel rules out Gaza probe | UN body endorses Gaza war crimes report | UN body debates Gaza war crimes report | UN condemns ‘war crimes’ in Gaza | Israeli soldiers allege abuses against Palestinians | Israeli troops kill apartheid wall protester | Israeli military whistleblowers: troops fired on children | Israel pulls land forces from Gaza, gunboats continue shelling coast | Israel admits troops used phosphorus shells in Gaza | Israel steps up Gaza withdrawal after ceasefire | Hamas joins fragile Israeli ceasefire | Israel declares ceasefire | Unusually Large U.S. Weapons Shipment to Israel | Video shows proof of phosphorous bombs in Gaza | Aid destroyed as UN’s Gaza HQ hit by Israeli fire | Protests over Israel’s Gaza offensive held in Canadian, world cities | Israel ignores ceasefire plea, pounds Gaza | UN relief agency halts aid to Gaza, citing Israeli attacks on staff | Rockets fired from Lebanon hit northern Israel | Israel is on its way to reoccupying all of the Gaza Strip | Israeli shelling kills dozens at UN school in Gaza | Tanks, rockets, death and terror: Gazan civilian catastrophe unfolding | They hate us for our bombs | Israeli army set for invasion | Food, medicine, fuel needed in Gaza, agencies warn | Gaza relief boat carrying former Congresswoman rammed by Israelis | Worldwide protests urge end to attacks on Gaza

Rory McCarthy, The Guardian
Janauary 31, 2010

Israel insists troops did not violate international law despite ‘operational lapses and errors’

Israel has delivered a report to the UN defending its actions in last year’s Gaza war and insisting its troops did not violate international law, but has not agreed to hold an independent investigation as demanded.

In the 46-page report, submitted on Friday and released late that night, Israeli authorities admitted some “operational lapses and errors in the exercise of discretion”. But they strongly denied allegations of war crimes raised by international human rights groups and by two separate UN investigations.

The report reveals there has so far been only one criminal conviction in relation to the war — one soldier was jailed for seven and a half months for stealing a credit card from a Palestinian home and using it to withdraw £250 in cash.

Last September, the South African judge Richard Goldstone published a highly critical 575-page report commissioned by the UN Human Rights Council which accused both Israel and the Palestinian Islamist group Hamas of “grave breaches” of the fourth Geneva convention, war crimes and possible crimes against humanity. It called on both sides to start their own credible, independent investigations or risk international prosecutions. Neither Israel nor Hamas has done so and the UN secretary general, Ban Ki-moon, will report on this to the UN general assembly in the coming days. The three-week war left nearly 1,400 Palestinians and 13 Israelis dead.

Last week Hamas officials in Gaza claimed their forces had not committed war crimes because their rockets only hit civilians by mistake because they were crudely built and unguided. Human Rights Watch dismissed that as a “whitewash” and said it was “factually and legally wrong”.


Cellphone fines up to $500 for Ont. drivers start Monday

Sunday, January 31st, 2010

Flashback: Hands off: Cellphone driving ban approved | Ban-happy Ontario accused of ‘Big Brotherism’ | Ontario limits car phone use | Turning Toronto into a nanny state | McGuinty considers banning use of cellphones while driving

CBC News
January 31, 2010

A three-month grace period for Ontario drivers violating the province’s new law against driving while using a cellphone is ending, meaning offending motorists are now subject to fines of up to $500.

Bill 118, commonly known as the distracted-driving law, came into effect on Oct. 26.

The provincial government asked enforcement officials to hold off fining drivers for three months as they adjusted to the new rules. Instead, police issued hundreds of warnings across the province during what they called an “educational period.”

But starting Monday, authorities will start handing out fines – ranging from a minimum of $155 to a maximum of $500 – to drivers who talk on their handheld cellphones. The ban also covers texting or emailing while behind the wheel, or using portable video games or DVD players.

Talking on a hands-free device is permitted.