Archive for January 2017
CONVERSATIONS WITH REMARKABLE MINDS
Entering the Era of Trump – a look at his Cabinet, the forces behind it and its threat to the public’s interest
Danny Sheehan is one of our nation’s most important and influential Constitutional and public interest lawyers. During the past 45 years he has handled such public interest cases as the Pentagon Papers, the Watergate Break In, Iran Contra and the Silkwood murder case. He has represented victims of he Three Mile Island nuclear disaster and fought against the American Nazi Party on hate crimes. Recently Danny was a leading attorney on behalf of the Native nations at Standing Rock. He is the founder of the Christic Institute and the Romero Institute, the latter being a nonprofit public policy center in Santa Cruz California. Danny has his law degree from Harvard University and later returned to study at the Harvard Divinity School.. He is the author of “The People’s Advocate: The Life and Legal History of America’s Most Fearless Public Defence Lawyer,” And his websites are DanielPSheehan.com AND RomeroInstitute.org
A special look at the corruption and illegal operations of the CIA and its influence upon our elected government.
Douglas Valentine is an independent researcher, investigator, author and consultant in Massachusetts. There are very few researchers in America who have done the depth of investigation into some of the darker corners of modern American history involving our federal intelligence agencies, mostly notably the CIA, as Douglas. His 1990 book on the secret CIA covert operation known as The Phoenix Project during the Vietnam war is regarded as the definitive study on this subject. His collection of Vietnam documents at the National Security Archive have been used by researchers for a decade. His lager book on the US’s secret war on drgs has received academic awards of excellence. His most recent book “The CIA as Organized Crime: How Illegal Operations Corrupt America and the World” is a voluminous account of the history of CIA corruption from its founding to the present, and why we should now consider the agency’s self-interests as contrary to the national and public good. His website is DouglasValentine.com
On Tonight's Progressive Commentary Hour Gary Null gives a long powerful commentary on Yemin and the American perception in the genocide. Gary Null also plays a long audio clip on Confessions of an Economic Hitman - John Perkins. According to Perkins, he began writing Confessions of an Economic Hit Man in the 1980s, but "threats or bribes always convinced [him] to stop." According to his book, Perkins' function was to convince the political and financial leadership of underdeveloped countries to accept enormous development loans from institutions like the World Bank and USAID. Saddled with debts they could not hope to pay, those countries were forced to acquiesce to political pressure from the United States on a variety of issues. Perkins argues in his book that developing nations were effectively neutralized politically, had their wealth gaps driven wider and economies crippled in the long run. In this capacity Perkins recounts his meetings with some prominent individuals, including Graham Greene and Omar Torrijos. Perkins describes the role of an EHM as follows:
Economic Hit Man (EHMs) are highly paid professionals who cheat countries around the globe out of trillions of dollars. They funnel money from the World Bank, the U.S. Agency for International Development (USAID), and other foreign "aid" organizations into the coffers of huge corporations and the pockets of a few wealthy families who control the planet's natural resources. Their tools included fraudulent financial reports, rigged elections, payoffs, extortion, sex, and murder. They play a game as old as empire, but one that has taken on new and terrifying dimensions during this time of globalization.
Perkins charges that the proposed conditions for this debt forgiveness require countries to privatise their health, education, electric, water and other public services. Those countries would also have to discontinue subsidies and trade restrictions that support local business, but accept the continued subsidization of certain G8 businesses by the US and other G8 countries, and the erection of trade barriers on imports that threaten G8 industries.
In the book, Perkins repeatedly denies the existence of a "conspiracy." Instead, Perkins carefully discusses the role of corporatocracy.