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North Carolina 22nd state to pass anti-BDS legislation promoted by Israel lobby groups

North Carolina 22nd state to pass anti-BDS legislation promoted by Israel lobby groups

Still taken from JBSTV news report June 29, 2017
By Alison Weir | If Americans Knew | July 8, 2017

The pro-Israel campaign in state legislatures against boycotting Israel just scored another victory in North Carolina. Last month corresponding bills were passed in Nevada, Ohio, and Kansas.

Similar laws are also being passed in U.S. cities and at the federal level.

Members of the North Carolina House of Representatives voted 96 to 19 and state Senators voted 45 to 3 for legislation that prevents state institutions from doing business with companies that boycott Israeli companies and/or products made in Israel.

The original sponsors of the bill were Senators Tommy Tucker, Rick Gunn and Andrew Brock, and Representatives. John Szoka, Stephen Ross and Jon Hardister.

Israel’s Jerusalem Post newspaper reported: “Representatives from the various Jewish Federations across North Carolina praised the passage of the legislation.”

“This bill makes it clear that the State of North Carolina stands with Israel, which has long been an important trading partner of North Carolina,” said Carin Savel, CEO of the Jewish Federation of Raleigh-Cary. [The Federation’s mission includes helping “to meet the shared obligations of our local community to Israel and international Jewry.”]

“Charlotte Jewish Federation executive director Susan J. Worrel said the bill “will solidify the relationship between North Carolina and Israel, who share important values and a mutually beneficial business relationship.”

“Jill Madsen, CEO of the Jewish Federation of Durham-Chapel Hill, said the bill “is an important step in the right direction.”

She added, “It prevents companies which boycott Israel based on national origin from doing business with the state of North Carolina.”

Marilyn Forman Chandler, executive director of the Greensboro Jewish Federation, said, “This sends a significant message against hatred and discrimination and will outlaw and condemn discrimination against Israel and Israelis. We look forward to Governor Roy Cooper’s signature, making North Carolina the 22nd state to take such action.”

Some of the other groups promoting the legislation are The Israel Project, a national pro-Israel organization; United for Israel, an international organization; and the American Jewish Committee, which created a letter opposing BDS that all 50 US governors signed. The AJC called it “a big win for Jewish advocacy and Israel.” Some groups label the BDS movement “antisemitic.”

The North Carolina bills are Senate Bill 329 and House Bill 161 –  short title: “Divestment from Companies That Boycott Israel,” full title:  “An Act Requiring State Divestment from, and Prohibiting State 3 Agencies from Contracting with, Companies that Boycott Israel.

JTA reports that this is at least the 22nd state with anti-BDS laws or executive orders. Previous states include Alabama, Arizona, California, Colorado, Florida, Georgia, Illinois, Iowa, Indiana, Kansas, Michigan, Nevada, New Jersey, New York, Ohio, Pennsylvania, South Carolina, Tennessee and Virginia.

Jewish community representatives join Pennsylvania Governor Tom Wolf as he signs anti-boycott legislation. ​Photo from the Jewish Federation of Greater Pittsburgh

July 8, 2017 Posted by | Civil Liberties, Ethnic Cleansing, Racism, Zionism, Full Spectrum Dominance | , , , , , , , , | 8 Comments

The Fukushima Health Crisis

By JOSEPH MANGANO and JANETTE SHERMAN | CounterPunch | August 1, 2014

Over 3 years since the Fukushima nuclear disaster, there is virtually no health research being conducted or released on harm to the Japanese. An April report by a UN committee tried to sweep the issue under the rug, predicting any harmful effects of the catastrophe is “unlikely.”

The UN panel made a very broad assumption about the worst nuclear catastrophe in history (or worst since Chernobyl) – and did this BEFORE research is done. However, a local health study raises alarm bells. Fukushima Medical University found 46% of local children have a pre-cancerous nodule or cyst, and 130 have thyroid cancer, vs. 3 expected. Incredibly, the University corrupts science by asserting the meltdown played no role in these high figures.

But Japanese studies must go far beyond childhood thyroid diseases. Japan isn’t the only site to study, as the fallout from the meltdown spread across the northern hemisphere.

In 2011, we estimated 13,983 excess U.S. deaths occurred in the 14 weeks after Fukushima, when fallout levels were highest – roughly the same after Chernobyl in 1986. We used only a sample of deaths available at that time, and cautioned not to conclude that fallout caused all of these deaths.

Final figures became available this week. The 2010-2011 change in deaths in the four months after Fukushima was +2.63%, vs. +1.54% for the rest of the year. This difference translates to 9,158 excess deaths – not an exact match for the 13,983 estimate, but a substantial spike nonetheless.

Again, without concluding that only Fukushima caused these deaths, some interesting patterns emerged. The five Pacific and West Coast states, with the greatest levels of Fukushima fallout in the U.S., had an especially large excess. So did the five neighboring states (Arizona, Idaho, Montana, Nevada, and Utah), which received the next highest levels.

Most of the spring 2011 mortality increase were people over 80. Many of these elderly were in frail health; one possibility is that the added exposure to radioactive poison sped the dying process.

Fukushima radiation is the same as fallout from atom bomb explosions, releasing over 100 chemicals not found in nature. The radioactive chemicals enter the body as a result of precipitation that gets into the food chain. Once in the body, these particles harm or kill cells, leading to disease or death.

Once-skeptical health officials now admit even low doses of radiation are harmful. Studies showed X-rays to pregnant women’s abdomens raised the risk of the child dying of cancer, ending the practice. Bomb fallout from Nevada caused up to 212,000 Americans to develop thyroid cancer. Nuclear weapons workers are at high risk for a large number of cancers.

Rather than the UN Committee making assumptions based on no research, medical research on changes in Japanese disease and death rates are needed – now, in all parts of Japan. Similar studies should be done in nations like Korea, China, eastern Russia, and the U.S. Not knowing Fukushima’s health toll only raises the chance that such a disaster will be repeated in the future.

Joseph Mangano is Executive Director of the Radiation and Public Health Project.

Janette D. Sherman MD is an internist and toxicologist, and editor of Chernobyl: Consequences of the Catastrophe for People and the Environment.

August 3, 2014 Posted by | Corruption, Environmentalism, Nuclear Power, Timeless or most popular | , , , , , , , | Leave a comment

War From Above

By Richard Hugus | Aletho News | December 31, 2013

Drone aircraft, which we first heard of as weapons of war used by the United States in foreign lands, are now poised for a full-scale invasion of the skies above the US itself. On December 30, 2013 the US Federal Aviation Administration announced its choices for drone testing in six states around the country — Alaska, Nevada, New York, North Dakota, Texas and Virginia. These six states may in turn do their testing in more than one location, For example, according to the Anchorage Daily News, drone testing centered in Alaska at the University of Alaska in Fairbanks will be called “the ‘Pan-Pacific Unmanned Aircraft Systems Test Range Complex.’ It includes six flight ranges in Alaska, four in Hawaii and three in Oregon.” According to the Honolulu Star Advertiser “the Pohakuloa Training Area on Hawaii island, the Pacific Missile Range Facility on Kauai and even the island of Niihau have been included in discussions of places where the testing could occur.” According to the East Oregonian, drone testing is likely to involve a former military base in Pendleton, Port of Tillamook, and Warm Springs. Likewise, the New York operation will be run from the former Griffiss Air Force base in Rome, NY and, according to the Cape Cod Times, will also include the former Otis Air Base on Cape Cod, Massachusetts. The Times reports that “the Cape site had the support of the state’s congressional delegation, a statewide military asset commission and business leaders” and that “among the institutions involved in the bid are Massachusetts Institute of Technology and Rochester Institute of Technology.”

What this story reveals is the creation of a huge web of DOD-connected Universities, businesses, corporations, defense contractors, and former and current Pentagon facilities spread all over the country. Included in this web are the many and various chambers of commerce, their boosters in the press, and numerous comprador “officials” anxious to bring federal money into their districts, at the expense of all the other people who live in them. Almost no news coverage has appeared that would imply the FAA decision was anything but a boon for the economy and the advent of a wonderful and inevitable new technology.

There is little news about the down side to hosting drones in all these areas of the country, each with a populace that has simply not been consulted. Drones first came to our attention at the beginning of “the war on terror.” We learned of them first as weapons for highly illegal, cowardly, and indiscriminate “targeted killings” in foreign lands. These weapons have murdered countless innocent people in Afghanistan, Iraq, Pakistan, Yemen, and Somalia pursuant to “kill lists” drawn up every week by the CIA and Pentagon, and approved by the White House. These weapons fulfill the US Air Force’s fantasy of “death from above,” carried out by pilots working in the security and comfort of US bases who, acting as judge, jury, and executioner, destroy supposed enemies from computer consoles as if it were a video game. The cowardliness of wars of aggression being conducted against innocent people in dirt-poor lands by unseen “UAV pilots” in air-conditioned offices thousands of miles away cannot be over-emphasized. This is what unmanned aircraft have brought so far to the reputation of the United States – a new low in the entire universe of human ethics; murder abroad is but the advance of capitalism at home. Wedding parties in Afghanistan have been decimated so that Amazon can deliver CDs and smart phones to our door by drone.

Nor is there news about the introduction of drones domestically as yet another assault on privacy and the human right to be free from surveillance. Domestic law enforcement agencies are just as anxious to spy on the US population and target people they call criminals as the Pentagon and CIA have been to spy on the rest of the world and kill people they call terrorists. It isn’t enough that our phones and computers have been turned by the NSA into astounding instruments of surveillance, that everything we say and do on these instruments is being harvested and stored, and that surveillance cameras are mounted at almost every business and public space. Now the national security state wants to have remote-controlled cameras videotaping us full-time from the sky. The police hope to have drones able to fire “non-lethal weapons” at people they deem to be involved in criminal activity so that they too can play God. Without question, non-lethal weapons will soon become lethal weapons and the US will be trying and executing citizens at home as it has done elsewhere without even a hint of due process.

The domestic military bases which are being revived by this brave new technology originally went out of business because there was nothing for them to do in the fulfillment of their original purpose – defending the country. Otis Air Base, now called “Joint Base Cape Cod”, is a case in point. It used to patrol the skies for Russian aircraft along the northeast coast and ended up being a disaster for the community in which it was situated because it polluted the local groundwater and sole-source drinking water aquifer with untold gallons of dumped jet fuel and cleaning solvents. It sent fighter jets to intercept the two planes hijacked to New York on September 11, 2001, but ended up being part of a ploy to let those planes actually reach the twin towers before they got there. This base and many others have been parasites on the communities around them. They will continue in that role in their new incarnation as hosts to drone spying and drone warfare. The war has come home. The people orchestrating this war – the global elite — have no particular allegiance to the United States. From their point of view, its land and its people must also be brought under control, just like everywhere else. How sad it is to see the scramble to welcome them.

December 31, 2013 Posted by | Aletho News, Civil Liberties, Militarism | , , , , , , , , , | 1 Comment

Hospital Drugs Patients & Dumps Them Onto Buses, Suit Claims

By MEGAN GALLEGOS | Courthouse News | June 13, 2013

LAS VEGAS – Calling it “Greyhound therapy,” a Las Vegas psychiatric hospital drugs patients and sends them on buses out of state to cities where they know no one, without medical instructions or anyone to care for them, one such patient claims in a federal class action.

Lead plaintiff James Flavy Coy Brown claims the hospital’s illegal policies are “sometimes referred to as ‘Greyhound therapy.'”

He sued Rawson-Neal Psychiatric Hospital, Southern Nevada Adult Mental Health Services, the Nevada Bureau of Health Care and Quality and Compliance, Dr. Anurag Gupta, his psychiatrist at Rawson-Neal, and others.

The complaint states: “Plaintiffs are former psychiatric patients at defendant Rawson-Neal Psychiatric Hospital (hereinafter ‘Rawson-Neal’) who, while still in need of psychiatric care, were involuntarily discharged from the facility by defendants and their agents and employees, and sent to out-of-state destinations where defendants knew said patients would be unable to obtain proper treatment, care and housing. Plaintiffs were medicated before their discharge and required to leave the facility under the influence of powerful anti-psychotic/tranquilizing medication. While plaintiffs were in a drugged state, and incompetent to give informed consent, the standard procedure was for institution staff to physically escort plaintiffs from the facility and place them in taxis bound for the Greyhound Bus Station in Las Vegas, Nevada. They were directed and required to travel on pre-paid tickets which had been previously ordered and paid for by Defendants Southern Nevada Adult Mental Health Services (hereinafter ‘SNAMHS’) and Rawson-Neal.”

Brown, 48, says he was admitted to Rawson-Neal on Feb. 9. The hospital is run by Southern Nevada Adult Mental Health Services. He was given “a diagnosis of psychosis, hearing voices, and thinking of suicide,” he says in the complaint.

He was discharged on Feb. 11.

“Defendants knew he was penniless and homeless and defendant Rawson-Neal knew or acted in reckless disregard of the fact that he would be unable to care for himself during the journey or upon his arrival,” the complaint states. “Before he was discharged, he was started on Thorazine, Cymbalta and Klonopin, all psychotropic medications which affect thinking and judgment. While Defendant Rawson-Neal had developed a written treatment plan which included assisting him to locate a group home placement and locating a case worker for him, this treatment plan was intentionally disregarded and violated by his involuntary discharge contrary to the plan.

“On February 13, defendant psychiatrist Dr. Anurag Gupta (hereinafter ‘Gupta’) ordered Brown discharged, physically escorted from the facility, and placed in a taxi which had been ordered by the defendants. Plaintiff Brown was then transported to the Greyhound Bus Station, where a pre-paid ticket had been purchased by the defendants to take Brown to Sacramento, California, a city which he had no prior contact, and where he knew no one. There was no follow-up plan and no prior contact had been made with any institutions in Sacramento from which Brown could obtain medical and psychiatric care. He was given three days of powerful anti-psychotic medications and bottle of Ensure for the 15 hour bus ride.

“Plaintiff Brown arrived in Sacramento, homeless, confused and anxious. He was taken by police to a local homeless service center, Loaves and Fishes, which could provide no housing, medical care or transportation. After his arrival at that location, he was directed to the U.C. Davis Medical Center’s emergency department which, after three days, arranged for Brown to be treated by Heritage Oaks psychiatric facility. From there he was discharged to a group home in Sacramento.”

Brown claims he’s one of more than 1,500 patients the defendants have treated this way, sent dazed and confused to nearly every state in the union.

“After learning of the ‘dumping’ of Brown in Sacramento by defendants, the Sacramento Bee newspaper began to investigate the circumstances which led to Brown’s arrival in Sacramento and discovered that since the year 2008 approximately 1,500 patients of the Rawson-Neal Psychiatric Hospital in Las Vegas, Nevada, have been transported by Greyhound Bus to almost every state in the country, all with minimum provisions to sustain them during protracted bus rides.

“A random survey by Nevada’s Bureau of Health Care Quality and Compliance of 30 discharges of psychiatric patients from Rawson-Neal revealed discharges in violation of policy and procedures of the Centers for Medicare and Medicaid and the facility’s own policies occur frequently. Patients, such as Brown, were involuntarily placed on Greyhound buses and sent out of state without prior arrangements having been made for follow-up care. These patients were not informed where they should go to receive continuing care upon arrival at their destinations. Discharge orders did not specify the amount of nutritional supplements to be provided to the patients for their extended bus trips; and appropriate and necessary prescription medications were not provided. Furthermore, necessary information was not provided on discharge documentation.”

Brown seeks punitive damages for civil rights violations, constitutional violations including cruel and unusual punishment, medical malpractice, negligence, gross negligence and breach of fiduciary duties.

He is represented by Allen Lichtenstein with the ACLU of Nevada.

June 13, 2013 Posted by | Aletho News | , , , , , | Leave a comment

The Endless Simmer: A Short History of Dry Cask Nuclear Waste Storage

By RUSSELL D. HOFFMAN | CounterPunch | June 11, 2012

In Washington DC, a recent Senate subcommittee hearing was held on nuclear waste. It stretched on and on for several hours. Only “experts” and Senators spoke. It was chaired by Senator Tom Carper (D, DE), who not-too-subtly confessed to possessing not a whit of knowledge about the issues: At every turn he would say things like, “I want to thank you for your report, which the experts tell me is very good.”

He did admit that his “tiny little state” is much too small to have the opportunity to bid for the privilege and PROFIT of having a federal jail facility built within its borders, let alone a nuclear waste dump.

But please come visit Rehoboth Bay when you get a chance! It hasn’t been Fukushima’d yet by Hope Creek or Salem Units 1 or 2, chugging away, rusting away, vulnerable to earthquakes and liquefaction as they sit on their manmade islands in the middle of the Delaware River, along Delaware’s northeastern edge. Essentially all of Delaware would be wiped out by an accident at these decrepit old power plants.

So of course, he wants a centralized storage facility, or several “decentralized” storage facilities scattered in “less densely populated” areas. He didn’t name a state he prefers.

The trick to getting a nuclear waste dump built, apparently, is a simple three-fold process, which, they claim, has been successfully done in other countries, but which they can’t seem to pull off here. They’ll keep trying. Here are the steps:

First, stop calling it a dump. Nuclear waste was referred to by one “expert” as a “resource”.

Second, narrow down the area which can decide yea or nay on the project. The area should be far smaller than a state or county, preferably it will be just a hole in the ground, the top of which is in somebody’s back yard. That would be the ideal situation.

And third: Pay the local community buckets full of money to get them to like the idea. This is not known as bribery, it’s called “incentive-based site location.” France added a twist the Senators liked: Start by building an underground “research facility” which everyone knows will “eventually” (read: Next generation, decades from now) be turned into a nuclear waste dump. ”We can make it attractive” announced one Senator confidently.

And sure, it sounds easy. But so far Americans apparently haven’t been dumb enough to accept the strategy. One Senator asked an “expert” if he thought the solution to get Yucca Mountain going was to pour more bribery money into Nevada (he called it “incentives”). That would probably work, was the answer.

And therefore, it was considered the right thing do to.

In the entire session, there was not one word about what processes might be studied, that had never been tried before, that had some promise… because there really aren’t any such processes being studied, and everything’s been tried before… and failed. Nuclear waste is an eternal problem. Scientific American pegs it at “250,000 years”, so that’s close enough to eternity for me.

~

Russell D. Hoffman lives in Carlsbad, California. He is an educational software developer and bladder cancer survivor, as well as a collector of military and nuclear historical documents and books. He is the author and programmer of the award-winning Animated Periodic Table of the Elements. He can be reached at: rhoffman@animatedsoftware.com

June 11, 2012 Posted by | Environmentalism, Nuclear Power, Timeless or most popular | , , , , , | Comments Off on The Endless Simmer: A Short History of Dry Cask Nuclear Waste Storage

War on Trees: Harry Reid, Ag Extension Agents, and Chinese biomass companies promote liquidation of old growth forests… in Nevada

Pinyon and juniper trees, demonized by ranchers, miners and water mining entities, are being eyed by Chinese “biomass” companies with the backing of politicians.

Ken Cole  —  Wildlife News —  January 18, 2011
Pinyon Juniper Forest, Nevada.  Photo - Katie Fite
Pinyon Juniper Forest, Nevada. Photo – Katie Fite

Recently the Nevada Pinyon-Juniper Partnership, aided by USDA, set up a conference to discuss pinyon and juniper trees. At the conference were several players in government and business who have an interest in the removal of pinyon and juniper trees in the Great Basin. Bob Abbey, the director of the BLM, attended the meeting.

Most people don’t think of the Great Basin when they think of old growth forests but the pinyon-juniper forests there are ancient forests with several hundred year old trees that provide important habitats and food for many species of birds like pinyon jays, Clark’s nutcrackers, black throated gray warblers, small mammals, nesting raptors. The charismatic seed-caching Clark’s nutcracker faces catastrophic food shortages in the Rockies due to whitebark pine die-off. It relies on large-seeded pines – and the pinyon pine has a superb large seed that was also vital to supporting Native American cultures in the Great Basin.

The refuge provided by these trees are probably the only reason that central Nevada has any elk at all. They are one of the important components that keep the entire Great Basin Ecosystem together because they retain snow later into the year due to their shade and absorb CO2. Their destruction would promote global warming and desertification by making the area hotter and drier.

After the masticator. Photo - Katie Fite

The history of animosity towards pinyon juniper trees is a long one. As with sagebrush, for many years ranchers have been getting BLM and FS to use our tax dollars to fund removal of p-j forests to promote livestock forage. They recruited the College of Agriculture at the University of Nevada, Reno, to concoct biased science to justify p-j killing projects. Test projects were initiated, but not evaluated, where p-j forests were chained, cut down or burned, that often resulted in unforeseen (to some) effects such as cheatgrass invasion. A false comparison was concocted where researchers claimed that p-j forests should have an open understory like seen in ponderosa pine forests which are subject to frequent repeated fires. Generally p-j forests are subject to small, spotty fires or major stand replacing fires.

By conveniently ignoring the fact that the p-j forests were heavily utilized during the mining days of the 19th century for fueling smelters, ranchers try to promote the false assertion that p-j are “encroaching” into areas where they previously didn’t grow when, in actuality, they are recolonizing areas where they were cut down. Proposals to destroy p-j forests by dragging huge chains between two tractors were made but they were shot down in court by Western Watersheds Project in 2002 so the proponents of p-j thinning have gone back to the drawing board.

Now it is being claimed that p-j are responsible for reductions in sage grouse populations because sage grouse avoid areas with tall structures or trees used by avian predators for perches to prey on them. This has been a very convenient argument because it distracts away from the fact that a century and a half of overgrazing has brought devastating changes in the form of weeds, sagebrush destruction, soil erosion, increased fire frequency, and other habitat degradation to the lower elevation areas that sage grouse depend on. While the ranchers squeeze the lower elevation habitat they are putting pressure on the agencies to kill p-j on higher elevation habitat under the guise of sage grouse “habitat restoration”.

On top of this pressure from the ranchers, foreign mining companies, who have bought up ranches and gained control of a number of grazing allotments, eye the p-j with disdain because the trees are in the way of expansion of existing and new mines. If the trees are cut down under another guise then it is easier to argue that they should be allowed to expand their operations. Another proponent of p-j thinning in Nevada is the water mining Southern Nevada Water Authority who has also bought up ranches and gained control of a number of grazing allotments. They eye the p-j with disdain because they transpire precious water that they want to mine and pipe to water Las Vegas.

Now a new player enters the p-j matrix. With the support of Senator Harry Reid, county commissioners, and ranchers, A-Power, a Chinese company, is pushing to use the p-j for “biomass” to fuel power generating facilities. Nothing could be more unsustainable than using ancient forests of the Great Basin for biomass.

Interestingly, a Chinese windmill assembly plant near Las Vegas is controlled by an entity named RePower that also has curried favor with Reid.

In an effort to move forward with landscape level p-j destruction projects a number of groups are formulating a plan for a 2 million acre “demonstration project” where they would thin the forests using money from the sales of public lands under the authority of the Southern Nevada Public Land Management Act or other federal funds that are supposed to be used for sage grouse restoration. This money would then be funneled through the Eastern Nevada Landscape Coalition which is a non-profit with a history of funding research which supports vegetation killing under the guise of “habitat restoration”. This would be done to reduce federal contracting requirements. As recently as 2008, current BLM director Bob Abbey was a “trustee” of the ENLC.

Great Basin pine nuts are prized, limited harvest occurs, and the value of nut production would far exceed the value of beef that could be produced by the destroyed land.

January 25, 2011 Posted by | Environmentalism, Timeless or most popular | , , , , , , | 1 Comment