Dr. Jones's Journal
Identity theft is yet another ramification of illegal immigration. It is particularly a problem in the border states. A good friend of mine had his own identity stolen after a car accident with an illegal, and it caused all manner of headaches. Once you've had your ID stolen, it's difficult to recover.
This is not to demean illegals - I believe that the majority are indeed here to work hard and raise their families. However, there are in fact a number of them who have engaged in this kind of identity theft, just as there are a number of American citizens who have engaged in the same - and the idea is to figure out how to prevent this kind of thing from happening.
If you've ever had your identity stolen, you know exactly what I'm talking about. It's a total nightmare - a time-consuming, endless exercise in frustration and heartache.
Note: The word "illegals" does not carry with it any implication of race or ethnicity. The fact is, individuals from a vareity of ethnicities and races have crossed the border into our country illegally.
In the noisy immigration debate raging in Washington, there is one voice NOT being heard. The voice of identity theft victims.
Behind many of the nation's millions of undocumented workers are someone else's documents. To get a job, illegal immigrants need a Social Security number and they often borrow one. As victim Melody Millet is fond of saying, U.S. citizens are being forced to share their identities with undocumented immigrants to give corporate America a steady supply of cheap labor.
Thousands, perhaps hundreds of thousands of Americans are right now sharing their identities with immigrants and don't know it. It is the dirty little secret of the immigration issue: By not dealing directly with the undocumented worker situation, the U.S. government is actually encouraging identity theft. In fact, one can argue that the origins of the identity theft epidemic can be traced to the immigration issue.
Life wasn't easy growing up in Sam's tiny impoverished town. Food was tough to come by, and his tin shack of a home was way too tiny for his wife and six children.
Sam had read the stories of how some of his people discovered a land of riches, a land where hard work paid off in the form of a steady salary and better living conditions. Often at night Sam would dream of this land, what it was like, and whether he would ever be there.
One day, Sam just about had enough. He could see his family was struggling just to get by, and life wasn't going to get any better. "If I could venture out to this land of plenty and send money home to support my family," said Sam, "well maybe that's what I need to do." So Sam set off on his adventure with nary the shirt on his back and his trusty walking stick.
A couple of days into his journey, Sam saw a farmhouse. "This is IT!" he exclaimed to himself. "This is the land of plenty I always heard about!" By this time Sam was starving and very thirsty. So he went up to the farmhouse door and tapped on the solid wood panels. A large fellow wearing suspenders appeared at the door and asked, "What can I do fer ya?"
"Hi, I'm Sam. I've come a very long way to find a better life. My family is in dire straits and I wanted to work to help support them back home. Do you have any jobs around the farm I can do? I'll work for anything, even four dollars per hour." The farmer furrowed his brows and began to think about the offer.
"Well, I dunno," said the farmer. "I've already got several helpers and things are pretty tight. But since you need work and you'll work for that price, maybe there's something I can do for you."
The farmer went back to his books and just didn't see a way to hire Sam. But then a thought popped into his head. He decided to fire one of his higher-paid helpers in order to get Sam on the payroll. This saved the farmer alot of money, but the human toll was unimaginable. And what was to follow was even worse.
Sam worked hard in the fields alongside his higher-paid counterparts. He was just happy to be working. Every week Sam would send some money back home to help support his struggling family. Eventually, word got out that this farmer was hiring non-local helpers at lower wages, and many more people from Sam's town came knocking on the farmer's door for work.
Amazed, the farmer didn't quite know what to make of it. He saw the hard work Sam was doing, and the economic benefit of paying Sam far lower wages. Hey, times were tough, right? So desperate times call for desperate measures. So the next day, the farmer announced to his workers that unfortunately, he won't be able to keep the farm going due to age and he must shut the farm down. So he laid off all his workers, then pulled Sam aside.
"Sam," said the farmer, "I'm going to reopen the farm in a month or so. I want you to be quiet about this. I'll put you up in our house until we can get the farm going again. At that time, Sam, you will be working exclusively with your people from the town you grew up in."
"Wow!" exclaimed Sam. "That's great!"
So the days went by and the farm reopened, and Sam and his friends worked on the farm for several years at four dollars per hour. Some even took on other jobs such as cleaning the farmer's house and taking care of his children. But on a daily basis, they endured shouts and protests from the group of laid-off workers who, after having built that farm into the successful operation it had become, now had to somehow support their own families even though there were no other jobs in town.
But after awhile, Sam and his friends began to grow discontent because the farmer would not agree to any increase in wages or shorter working hours. Furthermore, they weren't officially co-owners of the farm, and they wanted to be because they felt like they deserved it since they worked so hard.
And so one day, they went to the farmer and made their demands, and the farmer said no. "But we have to feed our families," they said, "and now we need higher wages, shorter hours, and to be co-owners of this farm. Come on, we deserve it. We pick your lettuce, we pull your turnips. We clean your house, take care of your kids, and we do the jobs those other lazy workers you had before us refused to do. And if you don't give us what we deserve, we're going to walk out right now and never come back. In fact, just to show you what we're worth, we're not going to show up for work at all tomorrow!"
The farmer didn't know what to make of it. Of course, he was nonplussed. Here he took in these people in out of the kindness of his heart, and now they're stabbing him in the back. He liked their hard work, but these demands were simply too unreasonable for him to sustain. So the farmer made the decision to fire Sam and all of Sam's friends, and re-hire his original crew.
Saddened and agry at the whole deal, Sam went back to his town as did all his friends. The Farmer? His lesson was learned, too: Never put the temptation of cheap labor over and above the locals who helped build his farm into the success story that it had become.
So who was right? The farmer or Sam and his friends?
Disclaimer: This is in no way related to the illegal immigration issue.
In recent days, some here on DU have likened illegals to civil rights activists. But can this comparison really be made? Consider the following comparisons made by fellow DU'ers:
Based on the evidence presented, one has no choice but to conclude that illegal immigration and civil disobedience are mutually exclusive.
What do you think?
Actually I didn't realize that such law enforcement measures have been taking place - not just in the Washington DC area, but all over the country.
I personally think law enforcement of those who are in our country illegally is a good thing. Even better though would be if law enforcement went after the companies who hire these illegals. But overall, perhaps these kinds of roundups would discourage illegal immigration to such a degree that it would lessen the strain on our healhcare systems, our schools, our hospitals, and our state and local governments. And not only that, but it would decrease the number of illegals who have taken American jobs, thus bolstering the ailing American middle class.
Most countries have far stricter immigration laws. In fact, if thousands of Americans crossed the border into Mexico City, marched in the street, and demanded immediate amnesty and citizenship, what do you think would happen? Try jailtime and immediate deportation!
Why is the United States so lax when it comes to illegal immigration? And why, when most other countries are so strict about it, do so many here have it in their heads that illegal immigration is a good thing?
The recent arrests of illegal immigrants after high-profile federal investigations in other states have sparked rampant rumors that law enforcement officials are randomly targeting the Latino community in the Washington region.
Federal and local law enforcement authorities deny that they are conducting random raids on illegal immigrants in the District, Maryland and Virginia. But rumors of roundups at malls, shops and street corners have become the talk of Spanish-language radio.
The stories have spread quickly: One man said two elderly women threw themselves on the ground at a 7-Eleven store on Kenilworth Avenue to avoid getting corralled into a bus of undocumented residents. The leader of an immigrant group said he heard of arrests being made at Columbia Road and 18th Street NW. Reports of buses being stopped in Silver Spring in search of undocumented passengers were heard.
"There's just so much fear," said Grace Rivera-Oven of Germantown, who has a local Spanish-language cable program. "There's a lot of paranoia going on, and people are just afraid."
I'm getting sick and tired of seeing American companies get away with hiring illegal labor, outsourcing our jobs, and insourcing cheaper labor from other countries. I'm tired of seeing American companies pass over hard-working Americans in favor of cheap illegal labor. I'm tired of hearing about managers being told to consider outsourcing their entire divisions to India. I'm tired of the stories of hard-working folks getting laid off, and as if that wasn't enough of a slap in the face, having to personally train their foreign replacements.
Lately we've been discussing how companies have hired illegals to do the work that Americans WILL do and DO do, thus depressing American middle class salaries and usurping American jobs. We know that the REAL backbone of the American economy is not illegals, but AMERICANS - always has been, always will be. But lying, theiving, greedy, inhumane American companies have alot more tricks up their sleeves - ALOT more tricks that are busy at work systematically destroying the middle class and putting many into near poverty.
Insourcing is a problem also, as more people from other countries are coming over to the United States on H1B visas and usurping American jobs. As with illegal labor, companies know they can hire these people at a lower pay, which also depresses American middle class wages. Companies would argue that these foreigners are smarter and work harder than Americans, and on top of that, they're good for the bottom line because they don't ask for as much pay. What an insult! What a slap in the face! Another instance of unAmerican companies passing over well-qualified Americans in favor of cheaper labor. And even worse than outsourcing, this is happening on American soil. Disgraceful!
Between illegal immigrant labor, outsourcing, and insourcing - we have a HUGE problem on our hands, folks! And the middle class is getting hammered from all sides. In theory, the lower-paid labor is supposed to lead to more profits for the companies and lower prices for consumers, thus consumers have more money in their pockets and put it back into the economy. But this is a fallacy - for one, how does one explain the growing personal debt of most Americans? And how does it give any sense of peace to hard-working Americans whose pay is cut and whose jobs are lost to this kind of thing?
What can we do to stem the tide?
To hear some really incredible stories, and perhaps to share a story of your own, you can view this resource: http://www.americaoutsourced.com/index.cfm
Some here on DU have taken the position that our borders should be completely open. But maybe it would surprise them to know that they are basically citing Bush FTAA policy. You see, Bush and Fox are very busy at work implementing the Free Trade Area of the Americas, a new borderless trading bloc in the same vein as the Eurpoean Union. Indeed, the Free Trade Area of the Americas would abolish all borders, create a new beaurocracy, and would uproot our Constutituion and Bill of Rights.
Once you read this, it will become clear to you what is going on. Immigration, the declining standard of living in the U.S., declining salaries, the attack on our Constitution - all part of the FTAA plan.
Borderless Americas advocates - be careful what you wish for.
Open and expanded trade will benefit all 34 nations of the FTAA. It will lead to better jobs, with bigger paychecks, in more competitive businesses, as well as to more choices of goods and inputs, with lower prices, for hard-working families and hard-driving entrepreneurs. The Bush Administration recognizes this.
His (Bush's) reelection provides a framework for continued successful negotiations. Trade and investment are the engines driving inter-American relations today and free trade agreements, both bi-lateral and multi-lateral, voluntarily initiated and ratified by President Bush and the heads of state of the western hemisphere, provide the much needed fuel. The rallying cry for this integration must be the reality of the competition our hemisphere faces daily from Europe and the Asian continent.
Globalization is not a possibility of the future but rather a reality of the present. It is a necessity, not a luxury, in order for the Americas to gain a competitive advantage over larger economies. As part of this historic process that began in Miami nearly a decade ago, we reaffirm our commitment to secure Miami as the Permanent Secretariat of the FTAA. We must continue to work this process understanding and accepting that it is a politically complex undertaking but not an impossible one.
Today more than ever we are well-positioned to turn this vision into a reality and with four more years under President Bush's administration and the unwavering leadership of Governor Jeb Bush, we remain at the forefront of this new economy. Now more than ever, it is no longer a question of if the FTAA will be signed and the Secretariat will be placed in Miami, but rather a question of when it will take place.
Mexico’s Vicente Fox, in a 2002 address to European elites, was unexpectedly candid about these aims:
"Eventually our long-range objective is to establish with the United States, but also with Canada, our other regional partner, an ensemble of connections and institutions similar to those created by the European Union, with the goal of attending to future themes
This same vision has been endorsed by powerful people in our nation -- including some regarded to be conservative. Among those who applauded Fox's vision was Robert L. Bartley, editor of the influential Wall Street Journal:
"Reformist Mexican President Vicente Fox raises eyebrows with his suggestion that over a decade or two Nafta should evolve into something like the European Union, with open borders for not only goods and investment but also people. He can rest assured that there is one voice north of the Rio Grande that supports his vision. To wit, this newspaper."
"Indeed, during the immigration debate of 1984 we suggested an ultimate goal to guide passing policies — a constitutional amendment: "There shall be -- open borders."
—July 2, 2002 editorial entitled "Open NAFTA Borders? Why Not?"
Source: http://www.stoptheftaa.org/ftaa /
Under the planned FTAA, Americans will gradually lose control over their destiny, their property, their taxes, and they will lose the protection of their rights by the Bill of Rights. The FTAA, like the European Union, will eliminate the enforcement of national borders to foster the free flow of peoples, not just products. National borders will become like our state borders. The immigration problem will be solved, since there will be no more immigration, only migration of populations at will.
This was the sign of a counterprotester at yesterday's immigration protests. This one slogan, "Don't sneak into my house and demand your rights," encapsulates the angst many Americans feel towards illegals for a variety of reasons.
I have IMPLORED the protesters to make themselves more credible in order to get Americans to side with their cause, but unfortunately, to no avail. Yesterday I heard numerous references to the "jobs Americans won't do." This is SO DIVISIVE I can't even tell you! And yet they are STILL saying it?
Lou Dobbs on ABC's Good Morning America this morning called it, "A clear-cut attack on the American worker." Why? Because it's PATENTLY FALSE.
Illegals, hired by lawbreaking American companies, have TAKEN the jobs Americans WILL do and DO do on a daily basis. This includes restaurant work, janitorial work, construction, welding, factory work, agricultural work - all these jobs have been done by Americans since the inception of our country and continue to be done by Americans to this day!
So they're telling ME that folks in the inner city who WANT to work won't take that work? You're telling ME that the victims of Katrina who really needed to get back to work but couldn't (contractors hired illegals for the cleanup) were simply LAZY? You're telling ME that college students who will do ANYTHING to pay off their debts don't want to do the work? Bologna. Don't buy it. Because it doesn't have an ounce of truth.
Americans are hard-working to the core. It's amazing to me what some Americans do for a living - even risking their lives! Backbreaking work, hard labor, days under the hot sun and nights in bone-chilling cold weather. This willingness to do this kind of work is what made our country great! And Americans continue to do this kind of work to this very day.
The simple fact of the matter is that illegals have not only usurped the jobs Americans WILL do and DO do, but they have also put downward pressure on wages across the board, lowering take-home pay for millions of middle-class Americans. Now Americans are being passed over in favor of illegal workers - not because illegals work harder and "do the jobs Americans won't do," but because nobody can compete with a lower-paid workforce. The question is not whether Americans will stand for this, it's for how long. It is truly the "WalMartization" of the American workforce, and it simply will not sustain itself.
But what most troubles Americans is the confrontational attitude of the illegals. "We're here to STAY!" they say. "We work hard, we do jobs Americans won't do. Tomorrow we vote!" They make it sound like Americans are just stupid and lazy, and THEY are the only ones working hard. They wave the Mexican flag in our faces, in essence spitting on the very country that took them in in the first place and gave them a hope and a future. Rather than integrating, they are being divisive and confrontational. They are flouting the laws of our land (they are here illegally and they know it), and they don't even WANT to consider doing anything that might unify their cause with the American people.
And now they are demanding their "rights."
But what rights? What rights do those who are in our country ILLEGALLY have? For that matter, what right do American companies have to hire these people in the first place? I believe the answer to both is simple. None.
I am sorely disappointed in yesterday's protests. Rather than doing the things that could get the American people behind them, they have only further alienated Americans from their cause. They are becoming increasingly divisive rather than going the other direction. This is a very bad omen, and I can only hope they consider what they are doing.
"Don't sneak into my house and demand your rights."
What do you think?
Not sure whether I agree with the term "invaded," but nonetheless, this article spells out in no uncertain terms the dire straits our current immigration policy is in from border agents themselves.
The author of this article, Jim Kouri, CPP, is currently fifth vice-president of the National Association of Chiefs of Police.
On May 1, the US Border Patrol Agents Local 2544 will be doing their part to offset any adverse impact on the American economy as a result of the upcoming illegal aliens' boycott. Local 2544, which represents Border Patrol agents in Arizona, vows to make big-ticket item purchases of computers and other expensive items on May 1... "Thousands more illegal aliens make it into (the United States) every day. We simply cannot stop them. We don't even have a reliable two-way communications system in the border patrol. Many times, if an agent gets caught up in a bad situation in a remote area, he or she is on their own," claim members of Local 2544.
While the federal government and Washington lawmakers tell they American people that they are beefing up border security, the men and women on the frontlines know the sad truth: "There is no way to call for backup. It's inexcusable. Our vehicle fleet is falling apart, with many patrol vehicle in excess of 100,000 or 200,000 very hard miles. We are constantly told there is 'no funding' for new vehicles, so we continue to drive unreliable junk year after year after year."
Take it from the troops on the front lines America -- the borders of this country are completely out of control. "Don't listen to the smooth-talking pinheads who tell you otherwise," said Local 2544 in their press release. So what can you and I do about this dangerous situation? Well, let's heed the advice of the men and women on the frontlines of the border war:
"We need your help. What can you do? Call your congressmen and senators. Demand that they get our borders under control. Demand that they properly fund the border patrol so we can get the equipment and infrastructure we need to do our jobs. Demand that they give us the freedom to do our jobs (yes, even if it means offending someone). Demand that they back off the all-out assault on border patrol agents' workplace rights (they want to shut our union down and gain the authority to fire us for any reason without any meaningful third party scrutiny)."
Ah hell, Levis are too expensive anyway.
It may be time to ditch your Dockers and lay off the Levi's, say privacy activists Katherine Albrecht and Liz McIntyre. New information confirms that Levi Strauss & Co. is violating a call for a moratorium on item-level RFID by spychipping its clothing. What's more, the company is refusing to disclose the location of its U.S. test.
Radio Frequency Identification (RFID) is a controversial technology that uses tiny microchips to track items from a distance. These RFID microchips have earned the nickname "spychips" because each contains a unique identification number, like a Social Security number for things, that can be read silently and invisibly by radio waves. Over 40 of the world's leading privacy and civil liberties organizations have called for a moratorium on chipping individual consumer items because the technology can be used to track people without their knowledge or consent.
Jeffrey Beckman, Director of Worldwide and U.S. Communications for Levi Strauss, confirmed his company's chipping program in an email exhange with McIntyre, saying "a retail customer is testing RFID at one location
"Out of respect for our customer's wishes, we are not going to discuss any specifics about their test," he said. Beckman also confirmed the company is tagging Levi Strauss clothing products, including Dockers brand pants, at two of its franchise locations in Mexico. "Once clothing manufacturers begin applying RFID to hang tags, the floodgates will open and we'll soon find these things sewn into the hem of our jeans," Albrecht adds. "The problem with RFID is that it is tracking technology, plain and simple."
Last night, NBC Nightly News ran a segment where they interviewed some SUV owners in Houston. They ran the same spot this morning on the Today Show. In this spot, the people did admit that they will not give up their SUVs despite high gas prices.
Now the question: Are we shooting ourselves in the foot? Could high gas prices be partly OUR FAULT?
Higher gas consumption equals higher gas prices. Filling up our SUVs once a week is just ridiculous! We refuse to give up our SUVs that are causing this massive consumption, then complain about exhorbatant gas prices? Imagine the savings if only people could trade in their gas-guzzling SUVs for a compact or midsize car!
We lived with station wagons in the 70's. Could we do it again? Or are we STUCK with high gas consumption through our SUVs which we REFUSE to give up?
Maybe instead of pointing the finger SOLELY at the oil companies (who are also to blame of course), I think we really need a reality check. If we traded in our SUVs, gas prices would go down. Period. End of story.
Anyone up for it?
Look at him. Well-spoken, smart, and very knowledgeable about how our government works. A killer debater. A man who seeks after truth and justice. A man who, in my opinion, absolutely demolished Bush in the 2004 debates and made Bush look like a hipster doofus.
Yes, I nearly cry when I see John Kerry on TV.
Look at who is in office now. A bumbling, idiot of a loser, a man who had absolutely no foreknowledge in government and politics. A man who was arrested for cocaine use (see the documentary "Horns & Halos") - a man whose daddy and (Saudi Bin Laden family) friends bailed him out when things got rough and he couldn't prevent his own company from going into the ground. A man who is a compulsive liar, a raving lunatic, and a tyrant! A man who couldn't give 2 craps about us "little people," just so long as his policies make him and his buddies rich. A hypocritical, flip-flopping, evil man whose family funded Hitler!
Yes, I nearly cry when I see John Kerry on TV.
Where is the justice? He should have been our President.
Lawyer: Rice Allegedly Leaked Defense Info
By MATTHEW BARAKAT
The Associated Press
Saturday, April 22, 2006; 12:59 AM
ALEXANDRIA, Va. -- Secretary of State Condoleezza Rice leaked national defense information to a pro-Israel lobbyist in the same manner that landed a lower-level Pentagon official a 12-year prison sentence, the lobbyist's lawyer said Friday.
The allegations against Rice came as a federal judge granted a defense request to issue subpoenas sought by the defense for Rice and three other government officials in the trial of Steven Rosen and Keith Weissman. The two are former lobbyists with the American Israel Public Affairs Committee who are charged with receiving and disclosing national defense information.
Defense lawyers are asking a judge to dismiss the charges because, among other things, they believe it seeks to criminalize the type of backchannel exchanges between government officials, lobbyists and the press that are part and parcel of how Washington works.
During Friday's hearing, U.S. District Judge T.S. Ellis III said he is considering dismissing the government's entire case because the law used to prosecute Rosen and Weissman may be unconstitutionally vague and broad and infringe on freedom of speech.
So why, now, when I hear GWB's speeches, do I think of Hitler? Why have I drawn a parallel between the Nazis and the present administration? Just one small reason -the phrase 'Never forget'. Never let this happen again. It is better to question our government - because it really can happen here - than to ignore the possibility.
So far, I've seen nothing to eliminate the possibility that Bush is on the same course as Hitler. And I've seen far too many analogies to dismiss the possibility. The propaganda. The lies. The rhetoric. The nationalism. The flag waving. The pretext of 'preventive war'. The flaunting of international law and international standards of justice. The disappearances of 'undesirable' aliens. The threats against protesters. The invasion of a non-threatening sovereign nation. The occupation of a hostile country. The promises of prosperity and security. The spying on ordinary citizens. The incitement to spy on one's neighbors - and report them to the government. The arrogant triumphant pride in military conquest. The honoring of soldiers. The tributes to 'fallen warriors. The diversion of money to the military. The demonization of government appointed 'enemies'. The establishment of 'Homeland Security'. The dehumanization of 'foreigners'. The total lack of interest in the victims of government policy. The incarceration of the poor and mentally ill. The growing prosperity from military ventures. The illusion of 'goodness' and primacy. The new einsatzgrupen forces. Assassination teams. Closed extralegal internment camps. The militarization of domestic police. Media blackout of non-approved issues. Blacklisting of protesters - including the no-fly lists and photographing dissenters at rallies.
There isn't much doubt in my mind - anyone who compares the history of Hitler's rise to power and the progression of recent events in the US cannot avoid the parallels. It's incontrovertible. Is Bush another Hitler? Maybe not, but with each incriminating event, the parallel grows -it certainly cannot be dismissed. There's too much evidence already. Just as Hitler used American tactics to plan and execute his reign, it looks as if Karl Rove is reading Hitler's playbook to plan world domination - and that is the stated intent of both. From the Reichstag fire to the landing at Nuremberg to the motto of "Gott Mit Uns" to the unprovoked invasion and occupation of Iraq to the insistence that peace was the ultimate goal, the line is unbroken and unwavering.
I'm afraid now, that what may still come to pass is a reign far more savage and barbaric than that of the Nazis. Already, appeasement has been fruitless - it only encourages the brazen to escalate their arrogance and braggadocio. Americans support Bush - by a generous majority - and mass media sings his praises while indicting his detractors - or silencing their opinions completely. The American people seem to care only about the domestic economic situation - and even in that, they are in complete denial. They don't want to hear about Iraq, and Afghanistan is already forgotten. Even the Democratic opposition supports the occupation of Iraq. Everyone seems to agree that Saddam Hussein deserves to be executed -with or without a trial. 'Visitors' are fingerprinted. Guilty until proven innocent. Snipers are on New York City rooftops. When do the Stryker teams start appearing on American streets? They're perfectly suited for 'Homeland Security' - and they've had a trial run in Iraq. The Constitution has been suspended - until further notice. Dick Cheney just mentioned it may be for decades - even a generation, as Rice asserts as well. Is this the start of the 1000 year reign of this new collection of thugs? So it would seem.
Worse than an Iranian nuclear attack?
Weaned off the almighty commodity, the US dollar can have a deeper impact on the US economy than a direct nuclear attack by Iran. The permanent demand for dollar-denominated paper stems substantially from the fact that until now almost all resources of the world are quoted in it. While this led to the eurodollar (US dollar-denominated deposits at foreign banks or foreign branches of American banks) market in the 1970s, the new terms of trade could ring in the demise of the dollar as the premier reserve currency...
Iran holds a strong hand as the No 2 producer of crude behind Saudi Arabia, pumping 5% of the world's oil demand. Politicians there will also keep in mind that dollar deposits might become a burden in the future, if the US steps up its current war of words to the level of economic sanctions in the attempt to halt construction of Iran's nuclear power plants. Money in the bank does not help when you have no access to it. Substituting Iran's domestic oil demand partly with nuclear power will place the country in a win-win situation. Cheaper nuclear energy and increases in oil exports from the current level of roughly 2.5 million barrels a day will result in a profitable equation for Iran.
Only one major actor stands to lose from a change in the current status quo: the US, which with less than 5% of the global population, consumes roughly one third of global oil production. Oil in euros would benefit millions more in the EU and its trading partners, though. And it would loosen the grip the US has on OPEC members. Thinking of the rapid growth of hostilities between the US and Arab nations in recent years, a renunciation of the dollar appears to be more than just an Arab daydream.
As this development poses a very real danger to the superior status of the greenback and the interests of the US, the "president of war" can be expected to take a strong line against the winds blowing from the Middle East. One may be reminded that Saddam Hussein had entered into discreet talks with the EU, proposing to sell his oil for euros. That was in the year before the first oil war of this century.
22 May 2003. Just after President Bush declares "Mission Accomplished," he signs an Executive Order into law that sums up the true intent of the Iraq War. In one fell swoop, he shields American oil companies working in Iraq from any legal proceedings in the United States, giving the oil companies carte blanche legal justification to steal Iraqi oil in whatever capacity they deem appropriate.
It essentially gave the United States unilateral control of all of Iraq's oil resources, and no opposing country could contest it in a court of law.
WMDs, Democracy, Freedom. Saddam the ruthless dictator who tortures his own people. Freeing the Iraqi people from tyranny. All smoke and mirrors to hide the true intent of the war: A military action to seize Iraq's oil fields and hand them over to the lobby that has virtually written U.S. Foreign and Energy policy - American oil companies.
President Bush's mission was accomplished, and that's all that mattered to him. That is why from the moment he put his pen to the paper to sign Executive Order 13303, he cared little about what happened in Iraq thereafter and the brave men and women in uniform he put in harms way for a lie.
"Withdraw is up to future Presidents and future governments of Iraq to decide..."
George W. Bush
Executive Order 13303
Protecting the Development Fund for Iraq and Certain Other Property in Which Iraq Has an Interest
By the authority vested in me as President by the Constitution and the laws of the United States of America, including the International Emergency Economic Powers Act, as amended (50 U.S.C. 1701 et seq.) (IEEPA), the National Emergencies Act (50 U.S.C. 1601 et seq.), section 5 of the United Nations Participation Act, as amended (22 U.S.C. 287c) (UNPA), and section 301 of title 3, United States Code,
I, GEORGE W. BUSH, President of the United States of America, find that the threat of attachment or other judicial process against the Development Fund for Iraq, Iraqi petroleum and petroleum products, and interests therein, and proceeds, obligations, or any financial instruments of any nature whatsoever arising from or related to the sale or marketing thereof, and interests therein, obstructs the orderly reconstruction of Iraq, the restoration and maintenance of peace and security in the country, and the development of political, administrative, and economic institutions in Iraq. This situation constitutes an unusual and extraordinary threat to the national security and foreign policy of the United States and I hereby declare a national emergency to deal with that threat.
I hereby order:
Section 1. Unless licensed or otherwise authorized pursuant to this order, any attachment, judgment, decree, lien, execution, garnishment, or other judicial process is prohibited, and shall be deemed null and void, with respect to the following:
(a) the Development Fund for Iraq, and (b) all Iraqi petroleum and petroleum products, and interests therein, and proceeds, obligations, or any financial instruments of any nature whatsoever arising from or related to the sale or marketing thereof, and interests therein, in which any foreign country or a national thereof has any interest, that are in the United States, that hereafter come within the United States, or that are or hereafter come within the possession or control of United States persons.
The ten most recent threads posted on the Democratic Underground Discussion Forums.
FL GOP tries to close state pension system to new workers, yet take THEIR pension at 2X accrual rate
FL GOP denies $51 billion federal Medicaid to poor, yet order cheap health care for themselves
Happy Mother's Day
I love DU2!
Florida Senate President Don Gaetz (R) ran company now accused of Medicaid fraud (Rick Scott redux)
Mediterranean diet cuts risk of heart dis-ease
By No Elephants
Most surprising Oscar story for me:
By No Elephants
The ten most recommended threads posted on the Democratic Underground Discussion Forums in the last 24 hours.
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