tagged w/ Yep
Finding access to raw milk is difficult in many parts of the US, but the situation is even worse in Canada where national law prohibits the sale of raw milk anywhere in the country. Few people realize, however, that Queen Elizabeth and her two sons drink this supposedly "dangerous" food item, as do nearly all Canadian farmers surveyed in a 2010 study published in Preventive Veterinary Medicine.
A writeup on raw milk published in The Globe and Mail back in 2010 explains that Queen Elizabeth personally drinks raw milk, and that when her sons Harry and William were students at Eton College, she went out of her way to smuggle it in for them as well. The Queen apparently recognizes some value in raw milk beyond what health authorities are willing to admit.
On the same token, nearly 90 percent of more than 2,100 Canadian farmers who sell their milk to the country's government-run dairy cartel revealed that they siphon off raw milk from their own cows to feed to their families before it gets shipped off for homogenization and pasteurization. Like the queen, these farmers are apparently unswayed by the pseudoscientific nonsense about the so-called dangers of raw milk.
And yet ordinary Canadians continue to be deprived of their freedom of choice in choosing what type of milk to drink. Those with lactose intolerance, for instance, are forced to simply stop drinking milk, as only raw milk contains the lactase enzyme that properly breaks down and digests lactose in the system. The process of pasteurization destroys lactase and all other enzymes, which makes it difficult for many to digest.
Like the US, Canada has had its share of government raids and tyranny against those that even just try to set up herd shares, which allow individuals to purchase shares in a cow or goat, and access the milk. Back in 2010, for instance, the Supreme Court of British Columbia issued an injunction against dairy farmer Alice Jongerden for boarding other people's cows, and forced her to basically stop milking the cows altogether, which is a form of animal abuse (http://www.homeontherangefarms.com/).
But the fact that both Queen Elizabeth and thousands of Canadian dairy farmers drink raw milk proves that milk can be produced and consumed safely in raw form. It also represents a blatant double standard, where only the "elite" are privileged enough to make their own food choices, while everyone else is subjected to erroneous and arbitrary restrictions on a wholesome food item that has been consumed safely for centuries, long before tyrannical governments came along and prohibited it.
Sources for this article include:
Since the drug war has become so unpopular with the electorate, instead of politicians actually changing the drug laws, the Department of Defense seeks to reduce and conceal the real costs by transferring the "dirty work" to private contractors to do what "U.S. military forces are not allowed or not encouraged to do."
The BBC (in Spanish) is reporting that the U.S. Department of Defense is delegating the war on drugs to private mercenary companies. Of those companies, the increasingly infamous organization previously known as Blackwater is said to have received several multimillion-dollar government contracts for "providing advice, training and conducting operations in drug producing countries and those with links to so-called "narco-terrorism" including Latin America."
The "no bid" contracts, issued under the Counter-Narcoterrorism Technology Program Office's $15 billion dollar budget, are described as "non-specific" and are said to be "juicy" for the private contractors. The Pentagon says "the details of each cost in very general contracts do not go through bidding processes."
An unnamed analyst says "the responsibility of the public and national security changing from a state's duty to be a private business...has become the trend of the future."
Although parts of the drug war have been privatized for years, the BBC reports this "transfer" of responsibilities is an attempt to placate those looking for Pentagon budget cuts in an election year.
According to Larry Birns, director of the Council on Hemispheric Affairs (COHA), "the drug war is unpopular and has no political weight except in an election year like this, so the Department of Defense wants to remove that spending from their accounts."
"They surreptitiously want to reduce anti-drug budget by transferring it to private agencies," said Birns.
Bruce Bagley, head of International Studies at the University of Miami, agrees with Birns that the main reason for privatizing the drug war is to sidestep "the high political cost."
But this move is not without risk, as private mercenaries have known to operate outside of national and international laws. "Here we go into a vague area where the rules of engagement are not clear and there is almost zero accountability to the public or the electorate," said Bagley.
The Pentagon maintains that it's perfectly legal, and mercenaries must follow strict parameters. However, Bagley points out that "few members of the Oversight Committees of the Senate and the House are aware, but they are required to keep secret, so all this flies under the radar."
There are concerns that contractors acting independently will threaten the sovereignty of the "key countries" in which they will operate. The Pentagon says the largest efforts will occur in Latin America including Mexico, Central America, Caribbean, Colombia and other Andean countries.
Professor Bagley says these private armies could "generate a nationalist backlash if the public came to realize the situation" of operations in their countries.
Once again, the war on drugs creates the opportunity to place troops in countries where having American soldiers would be politically disadvantageous, or simply impossible.
Ultimately, the Pentagon claims they will save money because private contractors don't have the bureaucracy and hierarchy involved in operations and because "if any of its employees dies, they are responsible."
Apparently, humanity is the last concern for the Pentagon budget, which always seems to have plenty of money for advanced weapons systems (also privatized), but is consistently lacking in benefits for its veterans. By privatizing the drug war, they no longer have to concern themselves with paying for benefits for warriors who pledge allegiance to the United States and take an oath to defend its Constitution.
As the war on drugs is increasingly viewed as a money-draining failure, it's unlikely that this move to privatize it will succeed in anything but creating demand for more government allocated profit, thus fueling its continuance through corporate lobbying to prevent a political end to such lunacy.
http://www.activistpost.com/2012/01/war-on-drugs-transferred-to-private.htmlSince the drug war has become so unpopular with the electorate, instead of politicians... more
Writing from the very region that produces more clichés per square foot than any other “story” – the Middle East – I should perhaps pause before I say I have never read so much garbage, so much utter drivel, as I have about the world financial crisis.
But I will not hold my fire. It seems to me that the reporting of the collapse of capitalism has reached a new low which even the Middle East cannot surpass for sheer unadulterated obedience to the very institutions and Harvard “experts” who have helped to bring about the whole criminal disaster.
Let’s kick off with the “Arab Spring” – in itself a grotesque verbal distortion of the great Arab/Muslim awakening which is shaking the Middle East – and the trashy parallels with the social protests in Western capitals. We’ve been deluged with reports of how the poor or the disadvantaged in the West have “taken a leaf” out of the “Arab spring” book, how demonstrators in America, Canada, Britain, Spain and Greece have been “inspired” by the huge demonstrations that brought down the regimes in Egypt, Tunisia and – up to a point – Libya. But this is nonsense.
The real comparison, needless to say, has been dodged by Western reporters, so keen to extol the anti-dictator rebellions of the Arabs, so anxious to ignore protests against “democratic” Western governments, so desperate to disparage these demonstrations, to suggest that they are merely picking up on the latest fad in the Arab world. The truth is somewhat different. What drove the Arabs in their tens of thousands and then their millions on to the streets of Middle East capitals was a demand for dignity and a refusal to accept that the local family-ruled dictators actually owned their countries. The Mubaraks and the Ben Alis and the Gaddafis and the kings and emirs of the Gulf (and Jordan) and the Assads all believed that they had property rights to their entire nations. Egypt belonged to Mubarak Inc, Tunisia to Ben Ali Inc (and the Traboulsi family), Libya to Gaddafi Inc. And so on. The Arab martyrs against dictatorship died to prove that their countries belonged to their own people.
And that is the true parallel in the West. The protest movements are indeed against Big Business – a perfectly justified cause – and against “governments”. What they have really divined, however, albeit a bit late in the day, is that they have for decades bought into a fraudulent democracy: they dutifully vote for political parties – which then hand their democratic mandate and people’s power to the banks and the derivative traders and the rating agencies, all three backed up by the slovenly and dishonest coterie of “experts” from America’s top universities and “think tanks”, who maintain the fiction that this is a crisis of globalisation rather than a massive financial con trick foisted on the voters.
The banks and the rating agencies have become the dictators of the West. Like the Mubaraks and Ben Alis, the banks believed – and still believe – they are owners of their countries. The elections which give them power have – through the gutlessness and collusion of governments – become as false as the polls to which the Arabs were forced to troop decade after decade to anoint their own national property owners. Goldman Sachs and the Royal Bank of Scotland became the Mubaraks and Ben Alis of the US and the UK, each gobbling up the people’s wealth in bogus rewards and bonuses for their vicious bosses on a scale infinitely more rapacious than their greedy Arab dictator-brothers could imagine.
I didn’t need Charles Ferguson’s Inside Job on BBC2 this week – though it helped – to teach me that the ratings agencies and the US banks are interchangeable, that their personnel move seamlessly between agency, bank and US government. The ratings lads (almost always lads, of course) who AAA-rated sub-prime loans and derivatives in America are now – via their poisonous influence on the markets – clawing down the people of Europe by threatening to lower or withdraw the very same ratings from European nations which they lavished upon criminals before the financial crash in the US. I believe that understatement tends to win arguments. But, forgive me, who are these creatures whose ratings agencies now put more fear into the French than Rommel did in 1940?
Why don’t my journalist mates in Wall Street tell me? How come the BBC and CNN and – oh, dear, even al-Jazeera – treat these criminal communities as unquestionable institutions of power? Why no investigations – Inside Job started along the path – into these scandalous double-dealers? It reminds me so much of the equally craven way that so many American reporters cover the Middle East, eerily avoiding any direct criticism of Israel, abetted by an army of pro-Likud lobbyists to explain to viewers why American “peacemaking” in the Israeli-Palestinian conflict can be trusted, why the good guys are “moderates”, the bad guys “terrorists”.
The Arabs have at least begun to shrug off this nonsense. But when the Wall Street protesters do the same, they become “anarchists”, the social “terrorists” of American streets who dare to demand that the Bernankes and Geithners should face the same kind of trial as Hosni Mubarak. We in the West – our governments – have created our dictators. But, unlike the Arabs, we can’t touch them.
The Irish Taoiseach, Enda Kenny, solemnly informed his people this week that they were not responsible for the crisis in which they found themselves. They already knew that, of course. What he did not tell them was who was to blame. Isn’t it time he and his fellow EU prime ministers did tell us? And our reporters, too?
http://poorrichards-blog.blogspot.com/2011/12/bankers-are-dictators-of-west.htmlWriting from the very region that produces more clichés per square foot than... more