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one nation, under surveillance
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number 146    
Brown Tribute
The president of Ecuador has
publicly accused the United
States of infiltrating his country’
s intelligence agencies, saying
in a weekend radio broadcast
that the CIA controlled much of
the nation’s intelligence
apparatus. President Rafael
Correa, a critic of Bush
administration policy in South
and Central America, was
commenting on the diplomatic
dispute that arose last month
when Colombian soldiers
conducted operations in
Ecuadorean territory. Correa,
who has promised an overhaul
of the intelligence services in
the wake of the crisis, said that
the CIA passed secret
information to the Colombian

“Many of our intelligence
agencies have been taken
over by the CIA,” Correa told
his radio audience. “Through
the CIA, information found
here was passed to Colombia
to improve their position.” The
president also claimed that
some Ecuadorean intelligence
officers received payments
from CIA operatives in the

The March raid by a
Colombian military unit against
rebels belonging to the
Revolutionary Armed Forces of
Colombia, or FARC, resulted in
the breaking off of diplomatic
relations between the two
countries, and the filing of a
lawsuit in international court.
The Colombian government,
which has been fighting the
FARC rebel insurgency for
more than forty years, is the
largest recipient of US military
aid in Central and South
it's all true
%          20            40           60
Percent of income paid in taxes by a
single worker making the average
selected countries
...That's what the
American people expect."   
  Washington DC  03.05.08
verbatim                                                                                 number 28.5
"Every candidate has
got to say 'change'...
In a move that has received little
media attention, military leaders from
the US and Canada have signed an
agreement that facilitates
cooperation between the forces in
the event of a natural disaster,
terrorist attack, or civil disturbance in
either country. The pact would allow
troops to cross international borders
under specific circumstances,
providing logistical and security
support for the host country’s
emergency agencies. Despite the
lack of press coverage, the
agreement has created a
groundswell of protest in both
countries, with many critics
particularly concerned by the lack of
public debate before the plan was

The accord was signed at a low-key
ceremony in February at Fort Sam
Houston in Texas, by the chief of US
Northern Command, General Gene
Renuart, and the head of Canada
Command, Lt. General Marc Dumais.
The ceremony and the pact were not
officially announced by any US or
Canadian civilian government
agencies, but the US Northern
Command, or NORTHCOM, did
publish a news release about the
plan on its website.

The NORTHCOM release calls the
agreement a “bilateral Civil
Assistance Plan”, and quotes
General Renuart as stating, “This
document is a unique, bilateral
military plan to align our respective
national military plans to respond
quickly to the other nation’s requests
for military support of civil
authorities.” The pact recognizes the
lead federal agencies with authority
in states of civil emergency as the US
Department of Homeland Security
and Public Safety Canada.          
all true
The Congressional Budget Office
projects that more Americans will
receive food stamps this year
than any time since the program
began more than 40 years ago.  

The CBO said that as
unemployment rates increase this
year, by October 28 million
Americans will receive food
stamps, that is an increase of
nearly 2 million recipients over
last year.  The cost of funding the
food stamp program is projected
to increase by $2 billion dollars in

The Center on Budget and Policy
Priorities said that last year 14
states reported having record
numbers of food stamp
recipients.  In Michigan, one in
eight residents receives food
stamps, and one in six West
Virginians receives the benefit.  
The number of food stamp users
in Rhode Island has risen by 18
percent in two years to the
highest level in more than ten
years.  Government officials and
organizations that assist the
needy believe that the increase in
the food stamp rolls is a
consequence of rising inflation
and the general economic
it's all true
A study by the Center for Responsive
Politics found that lawmakers in
Congress have millions invested in
companies that do business with the
Department of Defense.  The group
reported that members of Congress
collectively have over $190 million
invested in companies that contract
with the government to supply
everything from weaponry to soft
drinks to the US military.

The Center reported that 151
members of Congress held defense
contractor stock valued between
$78.7 million and $195.5 million.  
These investments netted profits of
up to $15.8 million in dividends,
capital gains, interest and royalties
for invested Congress members
between 2004 and 2006.  The center
reported that the companies that
hold defense contracts made over
$275.6 billion from government
contracts between 2004 and 2006, or
about $755 million every day.

While more Republicans have money
invested in defense contractors,
Democrats who do hold defense
company stock hold significantly
more stock.  The study showed that
Democrats held $3.7 million in
defense contractor stock and
Republicans held
$577,500 in military contractor

The center said that congress
member’s holdings in defense
contractor stock could pose a
conflict of interest as invested
politicians make funding decisions
regarding the occupation of Iraq
and military operations in
Afghanistan.  Several heavily
invested congress persons hold
key committee positions or
committee leadership positions.

The Center reported that nine
percent of all members of
Congress held up to $8 million in
stock in companies that
exclusively provide military
equipment.  The average share
price for these same companies
has doubled since 2004.  The
center reviewed the 2006 financial
disclosure statements of members
of Congress and reported on
stock ownership by members in
companies worth at least $5
million that hold contracts with the
Department of Defense.  The
companies include makers of
military equipment, such as
Raytheon and Boeing, as well as
companies like Pepsico and
Microsoft that also provide
equipment and supplies to the US
it's all true
The nation’s leading professional
association for engineers is facing a
growing chorus of criticism from
public interest organizations,
academics, and independent
engineers over alleged conflicts of
interest and cover-ups in a number
of high profile disaster investigations
conducted on behalf of the US

The American Society of Civil
Engineers has been accused of
producing reports intended to
understate design and engineering
errors in an effort to reduce legal
liability for public and private entities,
in catastrophes including the 1995
collapse of the Murrah Federal
Building in Oklahoma City, the 2001
collapse of  World Trade Center
Buildings 1, 2, and 7 in New York,
and the 2005 failure of the levee
system in New Orleans. The
persistent criticism
prompted the ASCE to initiate its own
internal investigation in December;
that panel is expected to issue a
report this month.

For years, some engineers have
questioned the close relationship
between the ASCE, which receives
millions of dollars in government
contracts annually, and various state
and federal agencies, notably the US
Army Corps of Engineers. But the
allegations against the ASCE came
to a head in October, with the
publication of a 42-page letter by
University of California, Berkeley,
professor Raymond Seed, that
assailed both the accuracy of the
society’s reports and the propriety of
its methods and practices. Seed, a
prominent research engineer who led
an independent probe into the failure
of the levees in New Orleans after
Hurricane Katrina, accused the
ASCE and the Corps of Engineers
of systematically attempting to
undermine his investigation.

In his letter, Seed described
attempts by the ASCE to divert
attention from design flaws in the
levees, which were built and
maintained by the Corps. Seed
also blasted the society’s 9/11
investigation, criticizing the
engineering standards of the
report, and calling the inclusion of
World Trade Center architects
and employees on the panel a
conflict of interest. After reviewing
the ASCE report on the WTC ,
Congress demanded that a new
probe be conducted by the
National Institute of Standards
and Technology, with the NIST
reporting substantially different
it's all true
The Justice Department has released
a legal memorandum that was written
in 2003 that sets forth a rational to
allow the Bush administration to
disregard large swaths of the of the
Constitution, established
international law and long cherished
moral precepts that are held in
common across the world and
throughout human history.

The memorandum states that no law,
whether written by Congress or as
incorporated into US law because of
our international treaty obligations,
can confine the actions of President
Bush as he prosecutes the so-called
‘war on terror’ because he is
“commander in chief”.  Any
prohibitions or constraints
on the president, the memo argues,
would be an unconstitutional
infringement on what the Bush
administration considers to be the
inherent powers of the executive
branch of government in the US.

The memorandum said that laws that
prohibit acts of torture; including
prohibitions against pouring acid on
captives, slitting the nose, ears, lips
or tongues of captives and disabling
the limbs of captives could be
ignored by the President who was
keen on allowing the CIA and the
Department of Defense to use what
he has described as “enhanced”
questioning techniques on detainees
held by the US military.
The memorandum was written by
an attorney named John Yoo, who
was a neophyte and was
promoted by the Bush
administration to be a deputy in
the Justice Department’s Office of
Legal Counsel.  

Yoo was advanced within the
office largely because he
demonstrated his desire to be an
accomplice in the administration’s
plans to establish a legal rationale
that would allow it to participate in
illegal and inhumane acts as the
US invaded sovereign countries,
detained individuals with no legal
authority, devised torture tactics
and ordered them to be used on
it's all true
Yoo Tortures Legal Logic, Bush Tortures Defenseless
Lawmakers Pocket Dollars on Defense Investments
Food Stamp Rolls Rise
To Unprecedented Highs
US-Canada Pact Internationalizes Martial
Professional Association Accused of Engineering Lopsided
Foreign Condemnation
Of Intel Infiltration
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