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Octafish's Journal
Octafish's Journal
September 15, 2015

Pope Francis restructured the Vatican Bank. Which is more than anybody did for Wall Street.

Not that he could appoint anyone to go after Banksters, but I'd trust him to. Reason why from the great DUer malaise.

Can Pope Francis clean up God’s bank?

by Paul Vallely
The Guardian, 13 Aug. 2015


At 6.30 on the morning of 28 June 2013 – just three months into the reign of Pope Francis – officials of the Guardia di Finanza, the Italian law enforcement agency for financial crime, pulled up in front of a rectory in Palidoro, a quiet seaside town west of Rome. When they rang the bell, the cleric who came sleepily to the door was informed that he was under arrest. A few hours later, wearing a well-cut grey suit, Monsignor Nunzio Scarano was shown into a cell in the Regina Coeli, Rome’s most overcrowded prison.

Scarano, a suave, handsome priest known for his extravagant lifestyle (his nickname among other priests was Monsignor Cinquecento, My Lord Five Hundred, because of his habit of carrying only €500 banknotes), was head of accounting at the Amministrazione del Patrimonio della Sede Apostolica (APSA) – the body that then managed the Vatican’s property holdings and controlled its purchasing and personnel departments. His arrest made front-page news. He was accused of trying to smuggle €20m on a private plane across the border from Switzerland in a money-laundering conspiracy involving the Vatican bank, an agent of Italy’s secret services and an Italian broker under suspicion for running a Ponzi scheme.

Doubts about Scarano had first been aroused six months earlier, when he had reported a burglary at his apartment in the city of Salerno, south of Naples. Paintings from his art collection had been stolen, he claimed. When the police arrived at the 17-room apartment on Via Romualdo Guarna, in one of the city’s wealthiest neighbourhoods, they were startled by its opulence. It was furnished with valuable antiques, and a spectacular display of art lined the walls in hallways divided by Romanesque columns. Scarano’s collection included a painting attributed to Chagall. Police reports estimated the missing artworks were worth €6m.

But the Scarano scandal had much wider implications. Investigators suspected that he had been operating APSA as a “parallel bank”, through which Italian VIPs could avoid taxes and the mafia launder the profits of illegal activity. Scarano denied it all but, just a few days after his arrest, two of the Vatican bank’s three top officials suddenly quit their jobs.



Paying fair share of taxes on what had previously been skimmed by who knows what is great for democracy, as well as the Church.

September 15, 2015

Funny how you never find anything wrong with the BFEE, SidDithers.

Bartcop coined the term "Bush Family Evil Empire" to denote the 60-year pre-eminence of one family in the formation of the political philosophy in the United States, that of the War Party. And, yes, personally, I have tried to chronicle their influence on the ascension of the national security state. At least three generations have held high national office, while also making big money off war and looting the public Treasury. The last president of the United States, a man who wasn't elected fair and square by any stretch of the imagination, actually said: "Money trumps peace" at a press conference. For some reason, not a single "journalist" had the guts to ask him what he meant by that.

Gee, what kind of person protects Republican evil-doers on DU?

September 14, 2015

That's exactly what Cass Sunstein said.

Sunstein also provided the reason we could "move on" from prosecuting Bush and Cheney.

Prosecuting government officials risks a “cycle” of criminalizing public service, (Sunstein) argued, and Democrats should avoid replicating retributive efforts like the impeachment of President Clinton — or even the “slight appearance” of it.

SOURCE w links n details: http://georgewashington2.blogspot.com/2010/10/main-obama-adviser-blocking-prosecution.html?m=1

Which is why Bush and Cheney could do all manner of evil and get away with it, conspiracy or not.
September 12, 2015

The ''a little bit of radiation is good for you'' lie is a special whopper.

Once heard by the public, a sizable percentage remember and reiterate it.

Could Small Amounts of Radiation Be Good For You? It’s Complicated.

by David Warmflash, Discover Magaine, April 6, 2015


"Might help boost our immune system" crapola.

Helen Caldicott makes clear that no amount radiation is safe for human beings, which, when mentioned, brings out shills, flamers and trolls like nobody's business.

September 12, 2015

Missed Calls: Is the NSA lying about its failure to prevent 9/11? (James Bamford)

Missed Calls:

Is the NSA lying about its failure to prevent 9/11?

James Bamford
Foreign Policy, July 21, 2015

March 20, 2000, as part of a trip to South Asia, U.S. President Bill Clinton was scheduled to land his helicopter in the desperately poor village of Joypura, Bangladesh, and speak to locals under a 150-year-old banyan tree. At the last minute, though, the visit was canceled; U.S. intelligence agencies had discovered an assassination plot. In a lengthy email, London-based members of the International Islamic Front for Jihad Against Jews and Crusaders, a terrorist group established by Osama bin Laden, urged al Qaeda supporters to “Send Clinton Back in a Coffin” by firing a shoulder-launched missile at the president’s chopper.

The same day that Clinton was supposed to visit Joypura, the phone rang at bin Laden’s operations center in Sanaa, Yemen. To counterterrorism specialists at the National Security Agency (NSA) in Fort Meade, Maryland, the Yemeni number—967-1-200-578—was at the pinnacle of their target list. They monitored the line 24/7. But at the time, the agency now claims, it had no technical way of knowing who was placing the call. The culprit, it would later be revealed, was Khalid al-Mihdhar, one of the men bin Laden had picked months earlier to lead the forthcoming 9/11 attacks. He was calling from his apartment in San Diego, California.

The NSA knew about Mihdhar’s connection to bin Laden and had earlier linked his name with the operations center. Had they known he was now reaching out to bin Laden’s switchboard from a U.S. number, on the day an al Qaeda-linked assassination plot was planned, the agency could have legally obtained an order to tap the San Diego phone line. The Foreign Intelligence Surveillance Court, in fact, approves eavesdropping on suspected terrorists and spies in the United States. By monitoring Mihdhar’s domestic calls, the agency certainly would have discovered links to the 9/11 hijackers living on the East Coast, including Mohamed Atta.

It’s likely, in other words, that 9/11 would have been stopped in its tracks.

A decade and a half later, that call and half a dozen others made from the San Diego apartment are at the center of the heated debate over the NSA’s domestic surveillance activities—namely the agency’s collection of the public’s telephone metadata, which George W. Bush’s and Barack Obama’s administrations have claimed was authorized by the 2001 Patriot Act. (That law expired this June and was replaced with the USA Freedom Act, which states that, without a warrant from the Foreign Intelligence Surveillance Court, the NSA will no longer have access to telephone metadata records.)



Thanks, Bush.
September 11, 2015

That's what Allen Dulles and J Edgar Hoover said.

George Herbert Walker Bush, too. The facts show they are suspects, more than authorities.

Poppy brought up the assassination of President Kennedy while delivering a eulogy for President Ford. It was a telling moment:

Poppy Bush brought up JFK Assassination and ''Conspiracy Theorists'' at Ford Funeral


Poppy smirks or laughs or grins at the moment he says "deluded gunman" near the 1:09 mark:

George H.W. Bush’s Eulogy for Gerald R. Ford

The New York Times
Published: January 2, 2007

Following is the transcript of the eulogy for former President Gerald R. Ford delivered today by former President George H.W. Bush in Washington, as recorded by The New York Times.


After a deluded gunman assassinated President Kennedy, our nation turned to Gerald Ford and a select handful of others to make sense of that madness. And the conspiracy theorists can say what they will, but the Warren Commission report will always have the final definitive say on this tragic matter. Why? Because Jerry Ford put his name on it and Jerry Ford’s word was always good.

A decade later, when scandal forced a vice president from office, President Nixon turned to the minority leader in the House to stabilize his administration because of Jerry Ford’s sterling reputation for integrity within the Congress. To political ally and adversary alike, Jerry Ford’s word was always good.



PS: Of course, to Gerald Ford Warren Commission skeptics presented "no problem."


PPS: What's even more telling is how there are still people interested in scrubbing the assassination record of any reference to Poppy.

PPPS: For those interested, background...

Know your BFEE: Poppy Bush was in Dallas the day JFK was assassinated.

September 10, 2015

Remember when Donald Nut had to HIRE actors for his campaign announcement?

Nut has built a following just by saying crazy things, thanks to the free coverage afforded repuglians.
September 9, 2015

Know your BFEE: Oliver North, Drug Dealer

The man who wrote the following was a DEA agent, stationed in Central America. Celerino "Cele" Castillo witnessed Ollie North's people unloading guns and loading cocaine for the trip North (no pun intended). The testimony also shows why the pukes hate the guy who has the goods on them -- John Kerry.


By Celerino "Cele" Castillo, 3rd
Former Federal Drug Agent and Author of:
Powderburns- Cocaine, Contras & the Drug War


Several years ago, the extreme right arm of the Christian Coalition selected to support Oliver North for U.S. Senate. Their support backfired and North became one of two Republicans who lost the elections that year. During North's campaign, I traveled to the Virginia to educate concern citizens on Oliver North. I went out to "grassroots" communities, and educated them on the criminal activities that Oliver North had been involved in during the 1980s. I went as far as challenging North to a debate. Of course, he refused.

During his failed 1994 campaign, he frequently claimed that there was no basis for any charges of his complicity in drug running, because as he keeps saying, "I'm the most investigated man on this planet." The truth of the matter is that the Iran-Contra special prosecutor, Lawrence Walsh, never investigated the drug trafficking allegations, because he did not consider it part of his mandate. The special prosecutor's original mandate from Congress was defined very narrowly, concentrating on the Iranian arms sales, the "diversion" of funds from the Iranian arms sales to the Contra operation, and on the Contra support operation as a violation of U.S. law.

During all the misdirected hoopla about Iran-Contra, the Senate Foreign Relations Subcommittee (known as the "Kerry committee&quot continued its work. Jack Blum, an investigator for Senator Kerry, testified to the committee on Feb. 11, 1987 that the Contras move drugs "not by the pound, not by the bag, but by the ton, by the cargo planeloads."

In 1987, Henry Hyde, as a member of the congressional Iran-contra committee and a defense attorney, helped steer the panel away from any serious investigation of the contra-cocaine connection. His focus was to spare President Ronald Reagan and his vice president, George Bush from possible impeachment over the Iran-contra scandal and related drug crimes implicating the Nicaraguan contra army.



OP Sept. 13, 2004: http://www.democraticunderground.com/discuss/duboard.php?az=view_all&address=104x2396787

September 8, 2015

That is a truly mighty OP and thread on Otis Pike, bobthedrummer!

People were um surprised to learn about Operation PHOENIX. Some if not most of what Mr. Colby told Congress about that was in Executive Session. He never got the opportunity to bring up his side of events for the record with his untimely demise. One army officer who knew him...

Edward Lansdale, who was the model for Graham Greene’s Quiet American, considered Colby to be the most effective American to serve in the Vietnam War.

...another wrote about his investigation into the circumstances around Mr. Colby's death. Nothing to see here, apart what he found.


William E. Colby: A Highly Suspicious Death

By Zalin Grant

This was Saturday, April 27, 1996. William Colby, a former director of the U.S. Central Intelligence Agency, was alone at his weekend house across from Cobb Island, Maryland, 60 miles south of Washington, D.C. Colby, who was 76 years old, had worked all day on his sailboat at a nearby marina, putting it in shape for the coming summer.

After he got home from the marina, Colby called his wife, Sally Shelton, a high-ranking State Department official who was in Houston, Texas, visiting her mother. He told her that he had worked hard all day and was tired. He said he was going to steam some clams, take a shower, and go to bed.

Colby made the call at 7 p.m. He was seen a few minutes later by two sets of witnesses in his yard watering a willow tree. One of the witnesses was his gardener who dropped by to introduce his visiting sister. His two next-door neighbors saw him at the same time from their window. After he finished watering his trees, he went inside and had dinner.

The witnesses saw him at 7:15 p.m. The sun set at 7:57—42 minutes later.

When he was found dead in the water nine days later, it was said that he had gone out paddling his canoe at nightfall and drowned. I was in Paris when I read the story in the International Herald Tribune. I knew William Colby. And I didn’t believe that for one second.



Wish that I had read your thread on March 11, 2008. Where in heck was I?
September 8, 2015

The People's House should outrank the intelligence community, if nothing else.

Thank you for grokking, Hotler. It's how democracy works.

Testifying for the last time before the Pike committee on 12 December, Colby stoutly defended the need for selected covert operations and warned that the United States would be in danger if the revelations of CIA misdeeds should lead to a crippling of the US intelligence Community. "I hope in the 1990s," he said, "that we will not look back at 1975 and marvel at the naivete of of the Americans of 1975 as we now marvel at the naivete of those in the 1920s." In unusually strong language for this generally soft-spoken DCI, Colby accused Congressman Pike of "frightening people" by saying that American intelligence was incapable of predicting an attack on the United States.

p. 170 http://nsarchive.gwu.edu/NSAEBB/NSAEBB362/chapters_11_through_13_and_appendices.pdf

If two brains are better than one, imagine how much better it is when 310 million are in on the thinking.

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