Posts tagged election
U.S. Helping Iranians With Surveillance Circumnavigation Technologies
There’s never a shortage of irony when it comes to the U.S. government.
We know that while Americans get their genitals grabbed (or a shot of radiation) at the airport to protect us from Al Qaeda, the U.S. government gives weapons to members of Al Qaeda over in Syria, because those are the good ones that want to take down Assad.
As if that’s not enough…
Today, while Americans are (amazingly) making a big deal that the NSA is spying on everyone, Obama comes out and fervently defends the practice. You see NSA spying on you is the good kind.
The “bad” surveillance happens over in Iran.
So what else for the U.S. government to do than supply Iranian citizens with surveillance circumvention technologies!
“The U.S. State Department is helping develop a number of general-use surveillance circumvention technologies,” Sascha Meinrath, founder of the Commotion Wireless Project, a non-profit group trying to build such devices, said in an email.“
The irony is so thick, you can barely see!
Our every digital move is being watched in the U.S. and the circumnavigation technologies are heading to Iran! Courtesy of the U.S. government!
The excuse is, of course, Iran’s tightly-controlled June 14th presidential election.
To which we Americans say: Remember when Ron Paul ran for President?
Tennessee Needs a Political “Cage Match”
Those of us in Tennessee have seen nothing short of political waltzes performed for our entertainment. Occasionally a small spat may arise but then the waltz continues. This show is scheduled prior to elections in Tennessee, and as normal, one must lead and one must follow. Once the show is done we find that the “leader” only has the leadership ability to lead their hand into our pocket.
Time for a revival, of political sense, is on the Tennessee horizon perhaps. The cage match is about to begin, and lucky for us it is a tag team event. The announcer yells into the microphone… “In this corner, wearing the blueish red, or maybe reddish blue trunks, are the current title holders”. Sadly these titles include expanded spending, complete disregard for those they were elected to represent and the safeguarding of the welfare, and occasional warfare state, by the contributing corporations that fuel their re-election campaigns.
The announcer continues… “representing the great state of” (audience thinking - please don’t say it!) “Tennessee, Alexander, Ramsey and Corker!”. The crowd goes wild, with boos and a chant of “RINO” that is shaking the rafters.
The announcer continues… “and their opponent in the opposite corner wearing red, white and blue trunks, Glenn Jacobs”. Now the crowd stands and cheers thinking maybe this one time justice for We The People of Tennessee will be served.
Final words for the announcer… “Let’s get ready to rumble!”, and we are!
Glenn Jacobs, also known in the wrestling circles as Kane, is considering a run in political arena. Although the match with three to one odds are unfair, for the three, due to political regulations Glenn Jacobs can face but one opponent at a time. In this opening match, titled “RINO Hunt”, should Glenn climb into the ring located a Neo-Con Plaza, Vegas books have Jacobs as a 3:2 favorite despite a slew of early wagers by lobbyists from all corporate and military avenues supporting his potential opponent, Lamar Alexander. Alexander has his share of supporters, but this is unable to be immediately confirmed until all the lobbyist phone numbers have been collected, called and results tallied.
Glenn Jacobs, better known as Kane, is a smart and likable guy. He’s considering a run for U.S. Senate against incumbent Lamar Alexander in 2014. Alexander is everything one might loathe in a mainstream GOPer — he’s for interventions abroad and at home, which in Joe Sobran’s playful definition makes him a “moderate.”
Note in the article, at the Daily Caller, that Jacobs’ influences are Austrian economists. Ron Paul is routinely made fun of at the Daily Caller — duh, Ludwig von who? — for his supposedly eccentric interests (eccentric meaning they’re not held by Mitt Romney or Ted Cruz), but the Caller seems favorable toward Kane. That’s great; I never gripe when one of our people is treated respectfully. I suppose it couldn’t hurt that Kane could pound a neocon into the ground while doing 20 other things (but since he believes in the nonaggression principle, he wouldn’t).
Then we have this brief video piece from Gary Franchi’s Next News Network.
Finally, here is an interview that I posted here for fellow Tennesseans and people elsewhere that Gary and N3 held with Glenn Jacobs recently, to get a better understanding of Glenn Jacobs and his thoughts on the issues.
Folks, should this match come to fruition, and if you have had enough of the lobbyist controlled, Obama supporting, status quo champions of the welfare and warfare state, loving to redistribute your hard earned money to their own special interests, corporate partners and Wall Street, and should you think the great state of Tennessee is long over due for intelligent and responsible leadership, take a look and a listen. You know what, there might be some hope after all this time! It may be time to take the blinders off of those who are unknowingly stuck in the political party “box” mentality, thinking that supporting these lap dog politicians is the only choice they have.
By Tona Monroe
Wheel Tax is latest ploy demonstrating hypocrisy of Republicans
Blount County voters will once again decide if they wish to pay a Wheel Tax, in the specially called election on June 11. The cost to the taxpayers for the special election will be at least $80,000, but saving money is of little concern to the resolution sponsors who have a habitual history of tax and fee increases. The Wheel Tax is the latest demonstration that being a Republican doesn’t necessarily mean limited government and low taxes.
All 21 members of the Blount County Commission were elected as Republicans in 2010, at a time when people were angry with Democrats and calling for a return to constitutionally limited government. The Blount County Republican Party sent a post card mailer warning people not to vote for local Democrats because of the big tax and spending Democrats in Washington DC. The three Democrats on the Commission were easily defeated.
Blount County voters handily defeated a wheel tax in 2006, with 71% of the voters rejecting it. Voters rejected a sales tax increase in 2008. Both of these votes took place prior to the current Commission, but Republicans had a super majority on the previous Commission, with a majority of the current Commissioners sitting on the previous Commission.
The current all-Republican Commission voted to raise the property tax rate the first year of their new term in 2011. While some of the Republican Commissioners voted against the tax increase, many of them voted for most or all of the spending that caused the tax increase, which makes them guilty of big spending and culpable for the tax increase.
Instead of creating a Committee to cut waste, the Commission created a Committee to Study Lost Revenue. The all-Republican Commission finished out the last month of the first year of their current term with litigation fee increases, with the resolution reading “WHEREAS, Blount County is in need of additional revenue.”
Rather than increase property tax in the second year of the current term, a sales tax increase was proposed in 2012. Blount County voters defeated the proposed sales tax increase a second time, but with a much narrower margin of defeat than in 2008.
Now the Wheel Tax is back, as the all-Republican Commission faces a huge spending increase from Blount County Schools, in its third year. The timing of the special election is interesting, the middle of June when School is out and people are taking vacations. The Commission has been unable to get voters in November elections, when voter turnout is at its highest, to approve tax increases. The date of the election appears to be deliberately set to catch people off guard so that the tax can be slid through, knowing that government employees usually vote, while hoping that those opposed are unaware or busy during the specially called election.
Republicans gave Blount Countians a property tax increase and fee increases in their first year. Republicans tried to give Blount Countians a sales tax increase in their second year. Now Blount Countians are faced with a Wheel Tax. The Commission could implement a Wheel Tax on its own authority with a two-thirds majority vote during two consecutive Commission meetings. Republican Commissioners don’t want to do this, partly because they hope to get the voter to do it for them.
The other reason is because the Wheel Tax won’t fix the School Budget problem entirely. The $86.8 million School Budget means a funding deficit of $6.9 million. Commissioner Holden Lail, one of the Wheel Tax resolution sponsors who is a retired Blount County educator and is married to Blount County educator, doesn’t know how much the Wheel Tax will actually generate. Estimates range from $2.5-3.5 million, which is far short of the $6.9 million needed. The Commission would then have to decide whether to increase the property tax rate to fund the deficit or tell the School Board to cut its budget.
The Wheel Tax proposal is sloppy, slothful and sly. It’s sloppy because the amount it generates is unknown but the best estimate shows it only providing about half of the requested increase. It’s slothful because it raises taxes without making any attempt to cut wasteful spending. It’s sly because it’s planned to avoid a general election so that County employees can ramrod it through.
The people of Blount County need to critically evaluate the performance of this all-Republican Commission. Voters have rejected all proposed tax increases, while the all Republican Commission has proposed a tax increase each year. Republicans railed about the dangers of big government Democrats in Washington DC in 2010, but the people of Blount County have an all-Republican Commission that hasn’t gone a single year without trying to increase taxes since their rhetoric about the Democrats in Washington DC.
Tona Monroe, a regular contributor to BCPublicRecord.com, is actively involved in state and local politics having a keen desire for restoring privacy and our right to travel. She resides in Greenback, Tenn. with her husband and dogs and enjoys a healthy lifestyle and dog rescue work.
It’s a matter of time until the United States becomes more involved with the Malian occupation. However with indication from Senator Chris Cons, that involvement could come through politics. So far, the U.S. has provided logistical support, refueling, and training to Malian soldiers, and most recently, the $50 million President Obama signed to Western forces.
Now, with the Malian elections coming up, the U.S. looks bright-eyed to have some effect or influence on the cycle. The Herald Sun notes that U.S. officials “cannot work directly with the Malian army until a democratically elected government replaces current leaders who came to power after a coup,” which will probably be the excuse for involvement in Mali’s elections. It’s inevitable that U.S. interests will get involved with Mali’s government, something that happens in nearly every country that America occupies.
Chair of the Senate Foreign Relations Committee’s Africa sub-committee, Chris Coons, told reporters, “There is the hope that there will be additional support from the United States in these and other areas, but … American law prohibits direct assistance to the Malian military following the coup,” calling on more of a U.S.-installed government than what is in place currently. “After there is a full restoration of democracy, I would think it is likely that we will renew our direct support for the Malian military,” Sen. Coons said.
Sen. Coons went on a bipartisan trip to Mali to meet with interim president, Dioncounda Traore, and French and African defense officials. Foreign policy analyst, Jason Ditz reminds spectators, “Before one takes that with a grain of salt, one must remember that the US considers Yemen’s democracy fully functioning after an election with a single US-selected candidate.” In all, Yemen is far from being a perfect government and is experiencing many corrupted problems.
The EU will spend more than $3 million on ‘troll monitors’ to trawl Eurosceptic debates on the internet ahead of European elections in June 2014, UK media reports. It comes amid fears that hostility against the EU is growing.
The new strategy will include “public opinion monitoring” to “identify at an early stage whether debates of a political nature among followers in social media and blogs have the potential to attract media and citizens’ interest,” according to internal documents reportedly discovered by the Telegraph.
Spending on “qualitative media analysis” will be increased by more than $2.6 million. Most of the money will be found in existing budgets, although an additional $1.2 million will be needed.
“Particular attention needs to be paid to the countries that have experienced a surge in Euroscepticism,” a confidential document said.
The monitors’ roles are clearly laid out in the documents. The controversial plan is designed to promote a stronger Europe, while engaging in conversation with those who hold an anti-EU sentiment.
“Parliament’s institutional communicators must have the ability to monitor public conversation and sentiment on the ground and in real time, to understand ‘trending topics’ and have the capacity to react quickly, in a targeted and relevant manner, to join in and influence the conversation, for example, by providing facts and figures to deconstructing myths.”
“In order to reverse the perception that ‘Europe is the problem’, we need to communicate that the answer to existing challenges… is ‘more Europe’ – not ‘less Europe’.”
But the EU is facing an uphill battle, as it seeks to change the minds of those who associate the bloc with economic crisis and high rates of unemployment.
“It is evident that the EU’s image is suffering,” the document said.
The information has been met with disapproval by many, who say the strategy is a waste of time.
“Spending over a million pounds ($1.5 million) for EU public servants to become Twitter trolls in office hours is wasteful and truly ridiculous,” UK Independent Party Deputy Leader Paul Nuttall told the Telegraph.
Training for the so-called “Twitter trolls” is set to take place later this month.
The news comes as Eurosceptic moods continue to gain momentum in the union.
UK Prime Minister David Cameron has pledged to renegotiate the terms of Britain’s EU membership.
Without reform, “Europe will fail and Britain will drift to the exit,” the leader said in a January speech.
Cameron has been dubbed a “trendsetter” by Conservative MP David Campbell Bannerman, who believes many other countries are seeking more flexibility within the EU.
But it’s not just governments looking for a bit more leeway when it comes to EU membership – individual workers in crisis-hit countries are unhappy with the bloc’s leadership and austerity measures, too.
Last Wednesday, anti-austerity protesters in Athens broke into a government building and threatened the labor minister. Riot police then responded with tear gas, batons, and pepper spray.
Even German citizens have expressed interest in leaving the EU – despite German Chancellor Angela Merkel’s ongoing support of EU policy.
Last September, a poll conducted by the Bertelsmann Foundation showed that 49 per cent of Germans believed things would be improved by leaving the European Union.
And the Germans aren’t alone – 34 per cent of French citizens also said they would be better off without the EU.
Bill Schickel, the Iowa GOP Co-Chair, was upset with the dominance of positions held by Ron Paul supporters and members of Campaign for Liberty, stating about the situation, “that is disenfranchising to many, many of our Republicans”. Later he mentions that he is running to ‘bring all of these groups together”.
By the way, Schickel failed in his bid and the supporters of Ron Paul and Liberty are still holding the positions of chairman, next co-chair and treasurer.
We all know, or should know, of the evils, health hazards and invasion of personal privacy posed when RFID technology is considered as a tracking and data warehousing method considered for humans, pets or livestock in general. The documentation of the health hazards such as cancer, tumors, etc. are well documented. For those not in the know regarding this technology I will include a short video with Katherine Albrecht at the bottom of this post.
What plans D.C. has for the 2016 elections is a mystery, as both Republicans and Democrats compete to out perform the other in voter fraud with many voters either have a home address at their local McDonalds or rose from the grave to vote at the poling locations.
This story caught my eye today from GhanaWeb.com covering the Ghana upcoming elections in 2016.
EC urged to deploy RFID for next election
The Electoral Commission (EC) has been advised to roll out a radio-frequency identification (RFID) scheme for Election 2016 to guarantee the integrity of and public confidence in the biometric registration and verification system.
Consequently, the next government should seek funds to support the EC to deploy information technology to run a credible, transparent, as well as free and fair general election.
Mr Haruna Iddrisu, the Minister of Communications, who gave the advice at the second Annual General Meeting (AGM) of the Information Technology Association of Ghana (ITAG) in Accra, stressed that the move had become necessary if Ghana’s electoral process was to be effectively driven by Information and Communications Technology (ICT).
He tasked IT professionals to make meaningful suggestions and recommendations to the EC to ensure that the electoral and democratic process was improved and further deepened.
Mr Iddrisu suggested that it should be made possible for all the polling stations in the 275 constituencies to be equipped with computers and other ICT tools to reduce cases of multiple registration and voting and other forms of electoral fraud.
He expressed optimism that an image recognition system would assist in giving meaning to the “one man, one vote” policy.
Full story located here: http://www.ghanaweb.com/GhanaHomePage/politics/artikel.php?ID=260748
As many people considered the last US presidential election a false illusion of choice, while many stayed home and chose not to participate in the process, a move as planned in Ghana would only reduce the traffic to the poles so that only those collecting their postal mail at McDonalds or those residing in their local cemetery would be casting ballots. But then, that may be the desired output from both wings of the welfare / warfare state bird of prey?
The Egyptian opposition has rejected a constitution referendum set for December 15, saying the it fails to represent all Egyptians. It comes after President Mohamed Morsi rescinded a decree granting himself sweeping powers.
The opposition says Morsi’s concession of the controversial decree is an empty gesture since it already achieved its main aim of ensuring the adoption of the draft constitution.
The referendum will go ahead as scheduled on December 15.
“One of our major demands is to postpone the vote on the constitution. Failing to respond to this will lead to more confrontation,” a senior official from the National Salvation Front told MENA news agency.
The opposition says the constitution – which was drafted by a Muslim Brotherhood-led assembly, ignores personal freedoms, disregards the rights of women, and fails to represent all Egyptians.
But Morsi supporters say the scrapping of Morsi’s decree should be enough to please the opposition.
“We ask others to announce their acceptance of the referendum result,” Brotherhood spokesman Mahmoud Ghozland said on the party’s Facebook page. He also asked whether the opposition would accept the “basics of democracy.”
But those who do not support Morsi are showing no signs of accepting the referendum. Egypt’s liberal opposition called for more protests earlier Sunday.
On Saturday, Morsi called a meeting with the opposition, in an effort to quell the violent protests that have shaken the country since the decree was announced on November 22.
“We have yet to see what will happen in the coming future, but if the president keeps by this referendum, then I’m sure the opposition forces won’t move either. So even though we had this [meeting], we’re still looking at a divided Egypt and political deadlock,” journalist Bel Trew told RT.
Opposition groups boycotted the Saturday talks, which lasted over ten hours, and called for protesters to step up demonstrations.
But many say the opposition is facing an uphill battle, as they come up against Morsi’s “hidden agenda.”
“If Morsi was genuinely honest about his goals, he would have [canceled the referendum] long ago. But he’s pushing a black, secret, hidden agenda on the population and the population – rightly so – smells a skunk,” author and publicist William Engdahl told RT.
But Selim Awa, an official who attended the Saturday meeting, said that Morsi is unable to change the date of the referendum on the draft charter – even if he wanted to.
Morsi says if the constitution is voted down in the referendum, he will call for an election within three months to choose a new constituent assembly.
Protesters clashed with police outside the Mexican Congress in Mexico City on Saturday, as the country’s new president, Enrique Pena Nieto, took the oath of office.
Hundreds of demonstrators threw Molotov cocktails, firecrackers and rocks at security forces, who responded by using tear gas to disperse the crowd.
At least two protesters were injured, one seriously and a police officer with a bleeding face was taken for medical treatment, according to law enforcement agencies.
Mexican authorities erected security barriers around the Congress several days ago in anticipation of protests by groups opposed to Nieto and the return of the Institutional Revolutionary Party (PRI) to power.
Forty-six year old Nieto, who will have the top job during the next six years, won the presidential election on July 1st by a narrow margin, with his victory has exposed deep divisions within the Mexican society.
The president-elect has took over at midnight in a symbolic ceremony after campaigning as the new face of the PRI, repentant and restructured after the party was voted out of the presidency in 2000. The PRI had ruled for 71 years with a mix of populist handouts, graft and rigged elections.
After the oath-taking, the new president delivered his inaugural speech at the historic National Palace in the city’s downtown, promising to govern democratically with transparency.
But his first act in charge shows a strong link to the past. In announcing his Cabinet on Friday, he turned to the old guard as well as new technocrats to run his administration.
By Lori Stacey, DC Conservative Examiner
With several strong alternative candidates available to vote for either on the ballot or as official write-in candidates, will the American people send a strong message to both the major parties by voting for anyone but Obama & Romney? It is hard to say what voters will ultimately do but what is apparent is that there has never been such a strong degree of discontent with the major party choices of candidates than in this presidential election of 2012.
Will Ron Paul finally get his legitimate win in the state of Maine where he has officially been set-up as a write-in candidate? We know the primary results were wrought with obvious fraud and then most of his duly elected delegates were not allowed to be seated at the national convention. Will the people of Maine finally be allowed to be heard in casting their real choice for President on the election night that counts the most?
Ron Paul’s supporters have surprisingly set him up as an official write-in candidate in at least a dozen or more states. The latest state is in California where he will be available for a write-in vote with Judge Napolitano as his Vice Presidential running mate. Don’t expect these write-in votes to be counted, tallied and published until weeks after election night.
Virgil Goode is going to be another one to watch, particularly in the states of Virginia, Colorado, Nevada and possibly in Ohio. He is still wildly popular in southern Virginia where he served as a member of congress for 6 two-year terms and is running his campaign very hard in this state. In Colorado, the Constitution Party broke through in 2010 and now has Major Party status in the state, thanks to the incredible run by Tom Tancredo for Governor in that election year. Expect voters to take Virgil Goode’s candidacy very seriously in Colorado.
Gary Johnson has become a very popular choice among the segment of Ron Paul’s support that leaned more heavily on libertarianism rather than conservatism. Expect him to be a strong force to deal with in several states.