Precursor To Civil Unrest: Millions of Americans Rush to Food Banks

Precursor To Civil Unrest: Millions Of Americans Rush To Food Banks (Source globalresearch.ca)

Those that run food banks all over America say that demand for their services just continues to explode.  It always amazes me that there are still people out there that insist that an “economic collapse” is not happening.  From their air-conditioned homes in their cushy suburban neighborhoods they mock the idea that the U.S. economy is crumbling.  But if they would just go down and visit the local food banks in their areas, they would see how much people are hurting.  According to Feeding America spokesman Ross Fraser, 46 million Americans got food from a food bank at least one time during 2014.  Because the demand has become so overwhelming, some food banks are cutting back on the number of days they operate and the amount of food that is given to each family. As you will see below, many impoverished Americans are lining up at food banks as early as 6:30 in the morning just so that they can be sure to get something before the food runs out.  And yet there are still many people out there that have the audacity to say that everything is just fine in America.  Shame on them for ignoring the pain of millions upon millions of their fellow citizens. Poverty in America is getting worse, not better. This year, it is being projected that food banks in the United States will give away an all-time record 4 billion pounds of food. And that number would be even higher if food banks had more food to give away.  The demand has become so crushing that some food banks have actually reduced the amount of food each family gets. “Food banks across the country are seeing a rising demand for free groceries despite the growing economy, leading some charities to reduce the amount of food they offer each family.” Those in need are starting to realize what is going on, so they are getting to the food banks earlier and earlier.  For example, one food bank is now getting long lines of people every single day starting at 6:30 in the morning.

EPA project caused spill in Georgia (Source foxnews.com) In Greensboro, EPA-funded contractors grading a toxic 19th-century cotton mill site struck a water main, sending the deadly sediment into a nearby creek. Though that accident took place five months ago, the hazard continues as heavy storms — one hit the area Tuesday — wash more soil into the creek. The sediment flows carry dangerous mercury, lead, arsenic and chromium downstream to the tourist destination of Lake Oconee, which then feeds into Oconee River — home to many federally and state protected species. Lead in the soil is 20,000 times higher than federal levels established for drinking water, said microbiologist Dave Lewis.

GMO Industry Set To Flood U.S. Food Supply With Toxic Chemicals

GMO Industry Set To Flood U.S. Food Supply With Toxic Chemicals (Source Natural News)

The U.S. Department of Agriculture’s recent approval of genetically modified organisms (GMOs) resistant to new herbicides will soon unleash a flood of new toxic chemicals across the nation’s agricultural heartland, observers have warned. Previously, nearly all GMO crops approved for planting were engineered for resistance to a single herbicide: Monsanto’s blockbuster product Roundup (glyphosate). The widespread adoption of these crops led to an explosion in Roundup use, which in turn spurred the evolution of Roundup resistance in agricultural weeds. In response to the proliferation of Roundup-resistant “superweeds,” GMO companies have turned to engineering multi-herbicide resistance into their crops. Specifically, GMO crops are now available resistant to both Roundup and the Dow herbicide 2,4-D, or Roundup and another herbicide, Dicamba.

But as critics of biotechnology have repeatedly noted, the adoption of these new GMOs will merely exacerbate the problem – encouraging still more herbicide use and the evolution of ever-tougher superweeds. In a recent article, Dr. Jonathan Latham of the Bioscience Resource Project referred to the process as “a vicious cycle that threatens both our environment and our food supply.” The adoption of herbicide-resistant GMOs always leads to an increase in herbicide use, because farmers feel free to spray poison in higher concentrations to kill off more weeds, no longer worried about harming their crop. As weeds start to develop resistance (within a few generations), the herbicide doses needed to kill them begin to increase. Inevitably, residue from these herbicides makes its way into the food supply. Unsurprisingly, chemicals designed to poison plants are not benign for animals, either. Roundup has been linked with endocrine disruption, birth defects and organ failure. An ingredient in the infamous Vietnam War-era defoliant Agent Orange – 2,4-D – has been linked with hypothyroidism, Parkinson’s disease, reproductive problems and suppressed immune function. The World Health Organization’s International Agency for Research on Cancer has declared both chemicals “probable carcinogens.” According to government documents, Dicamba can cause neurological damage in mammals and is also classified as a “developmental toxin.” This latter effect is particularly troubling given that a recent Environmental Working Group report counted more than 5,600 schools within 200 feet of agricultural fields likely to be planted with the new GMO crops. Both Dicamba and 2,4-D are considered at high risk for environmental contamination, the former in the soil and the latter by drifting through the air.

“Operation Unthinkable”: In Immediate Wake of World War II

“Operation Unthinkable”: In Immediate Wake of World War II, US Planned to Wipe Out the Soviet Union with A Massive Nuclear Strike (Source Sputnik News) Just weeks after the Second World War was over and Nazi Germany defeated Soviet Russia’s allies, the United States and Great Britain hastened to develop military plans aimed at dismantling the USSR and wiping out its cities with a massive nuclear strike. Interestingly enough, then British Prime Minister Winston Churchill had ordered the British Armed Forces’ Joint Planning Staff to develop a strategy targeting the USSR months before the end of the Second World War. The first edition of the plan was prepared on May 22, 1945. In accordance with the plan the invasion of Russia-held Europe by the Allied forces was scheduled on July 1, 1945. The plan, dubbed Operation Unthinkable, stated that its primary goal was “to impose upon Russia the will of the United States and the British Empire. Even though ‘the will’ of these two countries may be defined as no more than a square deal for Poland, that does not necessarily limit the military commitment.” The British Armed Forces’ Joint Planning Staff underscored that the Allied Forces would win in the event of 1) the occupation of such metropolitan areas of Russia so that the war making capacity of the country would be reduced to a point to which further resistance would become impossible”; 2) “such a decisive defeat of the Russian forces in the field as to render it impossible for the USSR to continue the war.” British generals warned Churchill that the “total war” would be hazardous to the Allied armed forces. However, after the United States “tested” its nuclear arsenal in Hiroshima and Nagasaki in August 1945, Churchill and right-wing American policy makers started to persuade the White House to bomb the USSR. A nuclear strike against Soviet Russia, exhausted by the war with Germany, would have led to the defeat of the Kremlin at the same time allowing the Allied Forces to avoid US and British military casualties, Churchill insisted. Needless to say, the former British Prime Minister did not care about the death of tens of thousands of Russian peaceful civilians which were already hit severely by the four-year war nightmare. “He[Churchill] pointed out that if an atomic bomb could be dropped on the Kremlin, wiping it out, it would be a very easy problem to handle the balance of Russia, which would be without direction,” an unclassified note from the FBI archive read.

Global Markets Plunge amid Signs of Deepening Slump

Global Markets Plunge amid Signs of Deepening Slump (globalresearch.ca) Global stocks plunged Thursday as fears of a world economic slowdown mixed with concerns over a destabilization of global exchange rates and mounting geopolitical tensions. US stocks staged their sharpest one-day selloff since February 2014, hitting six-month lows and wiping out all their gains over the past year. Shares in emerging markets, meanwhile, fell for the fifth day in a row, hitting the lowest levels since 2011. Markets in China led Thursday’s selloff, falling 3.18 percent. This brings total declines since June to 29 percent, despite an extraordinary series of cash injections by the Chinese central bank, which intensified following the country’s currency devaluation last week. The stock market drop has been accompanied by a sharp decline in economic growth. The most immediate trigger for Thursday’s selloff appeared to be a gloomy assessment of the global economy by the US Federal Reserve in the minutes just released for its July 28-29 policy meeting.

In recent years, the ruling class had treated reduced growth predictions by the Fed as a positive sign, signaling further infusions of cash to prop up financial markets.But Thursday’s negative response to the figures may point to fears that, after nine years without a rate increase by the US central bank, global central banks may be running out of ammunition to combat a crisis that is increasingly affecting every corner of the globe.

Markets in the rest of Asia, Europe and North America followed the Chinese markets downward. In the US, the Dow Jones Industrial Average fell more than 350 points, closing down by 2 percent. The S&P 500 fell by 2.1 percent, and the tech-heavy Nasdaq plunged by 2.8 percent after the release of negative technology sales figures on both sides of the Pacific. A number of industries have now officially entered stock corrections. Bloomberg reported, “The Nasdaq Biotechnology Index…entered a correction, falling more than 10 percent from a record set a month ago. The Philadelphia Semiconductor Index slid into a bear market, plunging more than 20 percent from a June peak.” The selloff was concentrated in the stocks that have risen most sharply this year, with Netflix Inc. falling 7.8 percent in a single day. One analyst told Bloomberg, “You’re finally starting to see the untouchable stocks—some of the biggest weighting of the market—get touched.”

 

This Herb May Rival DEET in Repelling Mosquitoes

This Herb May Rival DEET in Repelling Mosquitoes (Source newser.com) Native North Americans have long used the fragrant herb sweetgrass to ward off biting insects like mosquitoes, and new research shows how the traditional repellent works chemically. About to share their findings with the American Chemical Society, researchers at the US Department of Agriculture, the University of Guelph, and the University of Mississippi report in a press release that sweetgrass contains two chemicals, phytol and coumarin, that appear to be responsible. “Traditional or folk remedies have been a good source of leads for natural things that may be effective in repelling insects,” says Charles Cantrell, who works at the USDA’s Natural Products Utilization Research Unit; he’s also studied breadfruit, beautyberry, and Jatropha, reports the Smithsonian. Unfortunately, many essential oil repellents only work for 20 or so minutes, he says, and “what we’re ideally looking for is something natural and nontoxic that’s just as effective as DEET, that will work as an effective repellent for 10 or 12 hours like DEET.” Sweetgrass is a meadow grass native to northern climates, reports Discovery. Cantrell’s team needs to study the chemicals phytol and coumarin further to see if they will be effective for as long as DEET is, and while sweetgrass didn’t turn out to have any previously unknown repelling chemicals (coumarin is already in some commercial repellents while phytol has already been reported on in other studies), (Lemon eucalyptus and black pepper plants may also rival DEET.)

Feds: We have a way to fix land after disasters

Feds: We Have a Way to Fix Land After Disasters (Source newser.com) Federal authorities announced a plan today to produce massive quantities of seeds from native plants that can be quickly planted to help land recover from natural disasters such as wildfires and hurricanes. The program will make landscapes more resilient and healthier, especially Western rangelands where massive wildfires have been an increasing problem, says the US Department of the Interior. “It isn’t as simple as we grab some seed off the shelf and go out there.” Officials hope to create a national network of seed collectors, growers, and storage facilities so enough native seeds are available immediately after disasters to avoid erosion and prevent invasive species from moving in. The window to plant desirable species after a disaster can be less than a week and involve hundreds of square miles.

Russia pulls some US wines from sale

Russia pulls some US wines from sale (Source AFP) Russia’s consumer protection agency said Monday that some wines from the US state of California have been removed from sale, amid the worse tensions between Moscow and Washington in decades. The country’s consumer watchdog said it found “regulation violations” in wines from three California producers. Tests showed “elevated phthalate content” or “bifenazate pesticide in concentrations higher than the established norm” in some wines from makers Geyser Peak Winery, Crane Lake Cellars and Delicato Family Vineyards, a statement by the watchdog said. “Shipments of said US alcohol products that do not comply with current legislation have been removed from the market,” it said, without elaborating. Bifezanate is used for pest control while phthalate is a substance used in plastics manufacturing. Russia’s consumer watchdog Rospotrebnadzor regularly points up violations in products from countries with which Moscow is engaged in diplomatic rows. The United States and European Union have imposed biting sanctions against Russia over Moscow’s meddling in Ukraine, where pro-Russian separatists are waging a brutal insurgency. In response, Russia has slapped an embargo on most food imported from the West, though alcohol has not yet been included on the list.

“Avoid all contact” With Rain, in Beijing China

“AVOID ALL CONTACT” WITH RAIN, AMERICAN EMBASSY IN BEIJING WARNS(Source Zero Hedge) First in “China Sends In Chemical Warfare Troops, Orders Tianjin Blast Site Evacuation After Toxic Sodium Cyanide Found” and subsequently in “Poison Rain Feared In Tianjin As Death Toll Rumored At 1,400“, we documented China’s frantic attempts to reassure an increasingly agitated and frightened public that the air and water are safe after last Wednesday’s deadly chemical explosion at Tianjin. Although the full environmental implications of the blast likely won’t be known for quite some time, the immediate concern is that rain could react with water soluble sodium cyanide, transforming the chemical into potentially fatal hydrogen cyanide gas. The following unconfirmed text message is said to have originated at the Embassy: For your information and consideration for action. First rain expected today or tonight. Avoid ALL contact with skin. If on clothing, remove and wash as soon as possible, and also shower yourself. Avoid pets coming into contact with rains, or wet ground, and wash them immediately if they do. Rise umbrellas thoroughly in your bath or shower once inside, following contact with rain. Exercise caution for any rains until all fires in Tianjin are extinguished and for the period 10 days following. These steps are for you to be as safe as possible, since we are not completely sure what might be in the air. Remember the brave firefighters and their families along with all those suffering from the accident in Tianjin. Stand strong together China!

Stock Market Crashes are already happening

STOCK MARKET CRASHES ARE ALREADY HAPPENING (Source blacklistednews.com) a global financial crisis is happening right now.  All over the world, stock markets are already crashing.  Most of these stock market crashes are occurring in nations that are known as “emerging markets”.  In recent years, developing countries in Asia, South America and Africa loaded up on lots of cheap loans that were denominated in U.S. dollars.  But now that the U.S. dollar has been surging, those borrowers are finding that it takes much more of their own local currencies to service those loans.  At the same time, prices are crashing for many of the commodities that those countries export.  The exact same kind of double whammy caused the Latin American debt crisis of the 1980s and the Asian financial crisis of the 1990s. As you read this article, almost every single stock market in the world is down significantly from a record high that was set either earlier this year or late in 2014.  But even though stocks have been sliding in the western world, they haven’t completely collapsed just yet. In much of the developing world, it is a very different story.  Emerging market currencies are crashing hard, recessions are starting, and equity prices are getting absolutely hammered.

Bankruptcy and Economic Stagnation: Mass Layoffs Worldwide as Corporate Mergers

Bankruptcy and Economic Stagnation: Mass Layoffs Worldwide as Corporate Mergers near New Record

(Source globalresearch.ca) Major transnational corporations, including Kraft, Motorola, Lenovo, Tyson and HTC have announced mass layoffs in recent days amid a boom in mergers and acquisitions, which are on track to hit a record this year. Processed foods maker Kraft Heinz Co said that it would cut 2,500 jobs in North America, amounting to 5 % of its global workforce. The announcement is the result of last month’s $49 billion merger between Kraft and H.J. Heinz Co, in a deal orchestrated by Warren Buffett’s Berkshire Hathaway. Chinese computer maker Lenovo announced 3,200 layoffs, or 5% of its global workforce. The layoffs will be concentrated in the company’s Motorola Mobility subsidiary. Smartphone maker HTC announced that it would slash 2,250 jobs, or 15% of its global workforce, by the end of the year. These layoffs follow last month’s announcement by Microsoft that it would eliminate 7,800 positions, mostly from its Nokia mobile phone division that it acquired in 2013. San Diego-based semiconductor company Qualcomm Incorporated announced 4,700 layoffs. Mass layoffs in the food processing and technology sector come amid an ongoing jobs bloodbath in the global energy sector. On, Samson Resources Corp, a Tulsa, Oklahoma-based oil and gas producer, filed for bankruptcy, threatening over a thousand jobs. Earlier this month, Alpha Natural Resources, America’s second-largest coal producer, filed for bankruptcy, endangering the jobs of the company’s 8,000 employees. Oil consulting firm Swift Worldwide Resources reported in June that over 150,000 energy sector jobs have been lost globally since the beginning of the downturn in oil prices last year. Samson’s bankruptcy filing followed the announcement by multinational oil giant Royal Dutch Shell that it would eliminate 6,500 positions this year, as well as the announcement by British-based mining conglomerate Anglo American, the world’s fifth largest mining company, that it would slash 53,000 jobs. The latest round of mass layoffs is closely related to the global boom in mergers and acquisitions. Under conditions of slowing global economic growth, together with record amounts of cash sitting on corporate balance sheets, Wall Street is using mergers and acquisitions to put additional pressure on US and global corporations to cut costs and restore profitability on the backs of employees. Global mergers and acquisitions are close to hitting a record high this year, according to Thomson Reuters data. With a quarter of the year still to go, the value of deals hit $2.9 trillion, just shy of the $3 trillion figure for 2007, immediately before the 2008 financial crisis. In the United States, mergers have hit $1.4 trillion in 2015, up by 62% from a year ago. Warren Buffett’s Berkshire Hathaway announced the biggest corporate takeover so far this year: the $37 billion purchase of Precision Castparts, an aerospace and defense metal fabricator with nearly 30,000 employees. The already gloomy growth outlook for the year was made worse Friday with the release of economic data for the Eurozone showing that the region’s economy grew only 0.3 percent in the second quarter; significantly lower than had been predicted by analysts. This followed Friday’s release of negative economic figures for China, which showed that the country’s exports plunged by 8.3 percent in July. China’s poor exports performance likely contributed to its central bank’s decision to devalue the yuan this week, a move that roiled the global financial system. The global boom in mergers and acquisitions, far from expanding economic output and growth, has as its aim the enrichment of shareholders through layoffs and wage cuts. The end result of this vicious cycle of economic stagnation and parasitism is the further enrichment of the financial oligarchy at the expense of the working class.