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Octafish's Journal
Octafish's Journal
July 31, 2013

Yeah, see. The loot's ours, see.

Finders keepers, see.

Don't bring this up in committee, see.

Pete Brewton's book, George Bush, the CIA and the Mafia,” is a must-own for those interested in the workings of the Bush Organized Crime Family. Written by a former Houston Post reporter, the book documents, literally, the way the Mafia, the CIA and those connected and related to George Poppy Bush looted more than 1,000 of the nation’s Savings and Loans institutions — and pretty much got away with it, scot-free.


NSA spying is a, uh, venture, see.

July 31, 2013

The $32 Trillion Hidden Offshore Needs IRS Attention.

Wanna know where a lot of the money "lost" in the great Bankster Bailout has gone?

Check Out Who's Hiding $32 Trillion in Offshore Tax Haven Accounts


Some $32 trillion has been hidden in small island banking hubs which host a bevy of trust funds, shell corporations and other tax havens, the Tax Justice Network estimates.


The information is still being sifted through, even as it's being released to the public, but here's some of what's been found so far:

■American Denise Rich, ex-wife of pardoned tax cheat Marc Rich, has been uncovered as the settlor and beneficiary of two large trusts based in the tiny Cook Islands. The ICIJ found that Denise Rich gave up her American citizenship in 2012. Her citizenship was convenient enough when President Clinton had the authority to pardon her ex-husband.
■French President Francois Hollande, ardent socialist and tireless champion of the 75% marginal tax rate, appears in these documents, mostly by association. His campaign co-treasurer, Jean-Jacques Augier, has been forced to reveal the name of his Chinese business partner in a Caymans-based distribution company. Augier says he used his offshore company to make a large investment in China.
■Australian actor Paul Hogan, of "Crocodile Dundee" fame, has lost about $35.3 million from an account that he used to offshore his "bonza" film royalties. His once-trusted tax adviser Philip Egglishaw ran off with Hogan's sizeable hidden offshore stash.
■French banking scion Elie de Rothschild, of the famous banking family, has been named in the leaks. He was instrumental in setting up some 20 trusts and 10 holding companies in the Cook Islands, all extremely opaque in nature. His heirs have, not surprisingly, refused comment.
■Brigitte Bardot's third ex-husband, Gunter Sachs, a millionaire industrialist, has been revealed as the owner of a huge, obscure wealth-masking machine: trust upon shell company upon holding company, almost ad infinitum, mostly based in the Cook Islands. The ICIJ has constructed an interactive map of Sachs' extensive offshore holdings and business networks. The network is fairly representative of the steps that many on this list have taken to hide their wealth away. You can marvel at its imponderable complexity here.

And these names are barely the tip of the iceberg. The shockwaves have already begun to spread through the corridors of wealth and power all over the world.

How Much is $32 Trillion?

It bears repeating: $32 trillion has been stashed away, off the books, by corporations and wealthy individuals.



Offshore loot also represents money made from trafficking in drugs, guns and people. So...what can we do about it?

On My Mind

Tax Offshore Wealth Sitting In First World Banks

James S. Henry
07.01.10, 09:00 AM EDT
Forbes Magazine dated July 19, 2010

Let's tax offshore private wealth.

How can we get the world's wealthiest scoundrels--arms dealers, dictators, drug barons, tax evaders--to help us pay for the soaring costs of deficits, disaster relief, climate change and development? Simple: Levy a modest withholding tax on untaxed private offshore loot.

Many aboveground economies around the world are struggling, but the economic underground is booming. By my estimate, there is $15 trillion to $20 trillion in private wealth sitting offshore in bank accounts, brokerage accounts and hedge fund portfolios, completely untaxed.


This wealth is concentrated. Nearly half of it is owned by 91,000 people--[font color="green"]0.001% of the world's population[/font color]. Ninety-five percent is owned by the planet's wealthiest 10 million people.


Is it feasible? Yes. The majority of offshore wealth is managed by 50 banks. As of September 2009 these banks accounted for $10.8 trillion of offshore assets--72% of the industry's total. The busiest 10 of them manage 40%.



Not only would that money balance the budget, erase the debt and fix the nation and world's problems from hunger and homeless to energy and education; it would free humanity to do better things than make war all the time.
July 31, 2013

It IS invisible. They even talk in code.

How the Elite Talk in Code

Economic Policy Journal

It has long been a contention of mine that the super elite talk in a kind of code that keeps them out of trouble. They know full well among each other what needs to be done in certain tight situations, but you will never hear any of them speak it. They sort of ride above the fray and think to themselves that they are not manipulating anything, when, in fact, they are attempting to manipulate the entire world!

The recent comments attributed to David Rubenstein at Carlyle Group suggest that he has not yet, and may never, master elite code talk. He may be close to them, but as long as he does not fully understand code talk, he is a tool and nothing more.


Ashley is a Yale University grad, and member of the secret society Skull and Bones along with Bush. Here's the letter:

The Honorable Thomas Ludlow Ashley
Association of Bank Holding Companies
Washington, D.C. 20005

Dear Lud,

Thank you for your good memo December 8th.

I would appreciate any help you can give Neil. He tells me he never had any insider dealings. He got off the Board early--long before I was elected President. The Denver paper apparently ran a very nice editorial about him on that. He is an outside director, and thus I guess has liability, but I can't believe his name would appear in the paper if it was Jones not Bush. In any event, I know that the guy is totally honest. I saw him in Denver and I think he is worried about the publicity and the "shame". I tell him not to worry about that but any advice you can give as this matter unfolds would be greatly appreciated by me. If it turns out there has been some marginal call, or he has done something wrong, needless to say there will be no intervention from his dad. But, I'm quite confident this is not true...

Warm regards,


Notice how smooth. No talk about getting Ashley anything for taking care of the matter. The nice touch about if Neil "has done something wrong", but the clear finish, he didn't.

The US Office of Thrift Supervision investigated Silverado's failure and determined that Bush had engaged in numerous "breaches of his fiduciary duties involving multiple conflicts of interest." But Neil was not indicted on criminal charges, a civil action was brought against him and the other Silverado directors. It was eventually settled out of court, with Bush paying $50,000 as part of the settlement.


July 29, 2013

Glenn Greenwald POPPED Tim Geithner in the chops, way before it was cool.

The events preceding Goldman Sachs’ new “blowout profits”

In May, a former top IMF official noted: "the finance industry has effectively captured our government.

Salon.com MONDAY, JUL 13, 2009

Remember all of this — the $700 billion bank bailout, the AIG scandal, dark and scary threats of imminent global meltdown if there wasn’t full-scale capitulation by the citizenry to the immense transfer of public wealth to the private investment banking sector? Such distant, hazy memories: so many exciting celebrity deaths and riveting celebrity resignations ago. If sequences of events like these don’t cause mass citizen outrage, then it’s hard to imagine what will:


Robert Reich, March 18, 2009:

We’ve also learned that much of the 170 billion has been used by AIG to pay off AIG’s putative obligations to other Wall Street banks such as Goldman Sachs. Goldman has maintained that it got no bailout money from the Treasury. But in fact it received some $13 billion through AIG. More troubling is that the original plan to bail out AIG was concocted at a meeting held last fall, run by then Treasury Secretary Hank Paulson who, before becoming Teasury Secretary, had been CEO of Goldman Sachs. Also attending the meeting was Lloyd Blankenfein, the current CEO of Goldman Sachs. Also at the meeting: Tim Geithner, then head of the New York Fed.

Tom Edsall, The Huffington Post, April 2, 2009:

Decisions made during the final months of the Bush administration created an environment in which the most politically connected investment banks, Goldman Sachs and Morgan Stanley, not only flourished, but saw their competitors laid waste, with firms like Lehman in bankruptcy, and others, like Merrill Lynch and Bank of America, forced to merge in desperate hope of surviving.


Former IMF Chief Economist and current MIT Professor Simon Johnson, The Atlantic, May 2009:

THE ATLANTIC: The crash has laid bare many unpleasant truths about the United States. One of the most alarming, says a former chief economist of the International Monetary Fund, is that the finance industry has effectively captured our government — a state of affairs that more typically describes emerging markets, and is at the center of many emerging-market crises. . . . .

JOHNSON: Squeezing the oligarchs, though, is seldom the strategy of choice among emerging-market governments. Quite the contrary: at the outset of the crisis, the oligarchs are usually among the first to get extra help from the government, such as preferential access to foreign currency, or maybe a nice tax break, or—here’s a classic Kremlin bailout technique — the assumption of private debt obligations by the government. Under duress, generosity toward old friends takes many innovative forms. Meanwhile, needing to squeeze someone, most emerging-market governments look first to ordinary working folk — at least until the riots grow too large. . . .



It's not just Snowden and illegal NSA spying, Big Money hates Greenwald for telling the truth about how the rich get richer and the 99-percent are used to foam the runway for the Banksters, thanks to Wall Street's toadies in Washington.
July 23, 2013

I've tried to make up for lack of news coverage, using DU as a news medium...

A Public Service Announcement about Plutonium

TEPCO - Plutonium is not dangerous. Where is the Boss?

Fukushima, Plutonium, CIA, and the BFEE: Deep Doo-Doo Four Ways to Doomsday

Before and After photo show significant tsunami damage...

On the Poet's Trail

Helicopter pictures show devastation inside Fukushima reactor towers

Governments Covering Up Nuclear Meltdowns for 50 Years to Protect the Nuclear Power Industry

Surviving Chernobyl Cleaner: 'Tell The People Of Japan To Run!'

What part of what he said wasn't true?

First thing I'd do if I were fighting this nuclear disaster is get the Team the best gear.

The Return of Nukespeak

TEPCO - Plutonium is not dangerous. Where's the Boss?

Toxic plutonium seeping from Japan's nuclear plant

Japan's Nuclear Rescuers: 'Inevitable Some of Them May Die Within Weeks'

Fukushima from Space

Absolutely. A real shame - man's hubris.

Japan Nuclear Power Plants

A more-recent satellite image of Fukushima Daiichi reactors 1-4...

The SCALE of the devastation is incredible.

Jimmy Carter, USN - Nuclear Hero

Utility Engineer Warned of Tsunami Threat at Japanese Nuclear Plant

Voyage to Fukushima Daiichi

TEPCO was warned and took the cheapskate's way out.

Fukushima owners failed to follow emergency manual - report

The people's ancestors left monuments to remind them of the dangers...

Fukushima tsunami plan a single page

Doubts deepen over TEPCO truthfulness after president's sightseeing trip uncovered

Atomic Samurai -IAEA Humbled By Worker Courage at Fukushima Daiichi

Fukushima Radiation Data Quarantined by Governments of Japan and the United States. Why?

Absolutely. And some, if not most, cancer deaths can be avoided with forewarning and knowledge.

''We never meant to conceal the information, but it never occurred to us to make it public.''

Fukushima Daiichi Mystery Man Steps Forward

The Fukushima Crisis Demonstrates how Lowly the Global Elites Hold the Common People

Plutonium detected 40km from Fukushima plant

Trivializing Fukushima

''We never meant to conceal the information, but it never occurred to us to make it public.''

In regards to Fukushima, the only thing TEPCO has successfully buried is the Truth.

TEPCO was warned and took the cheapskate's way out.

Trivializing Fukushima

Citizen Testing Finds 20 Radioactive Hot Spots Around Tokyo

Japan Fukushima plant dismantling needs over 30 yrs

Fukushima Typhoon raising radioactive water levels in contaminated buildings.

Fukushima owners failed to follow emergency manual - report

Fukushima and the Nuclear Establishment - The Big Lies Fly High
July 22, 2013

Searching for Honest History: Domestic Surveillance

By S. Brian Willson
Vietnam Veterans Against the War, Spring 2006

M. Palmer and his twenty-four-year-old assistant, J. Edgar Hoover, conducted in 1919 what are popularly called the "Palmer Raids" or "Red Raids," developing a database and ordering the smashing of labor union offices and headquarters of communist and socialist organizations without search warrants, concentrating on "foreigners." That December, 249 of the arrested were forced onto a ship headed for the Soviet Union. In January 1920, another 6,000 were arrested without warrants, mostly members of the Industrial Workers of the World (Wobblies). During one raid, 4,000 "radicals" were grabbed in a single night, and all "foreign aliens" were deported. By January 1920, Palmer and Hoover had arrested more than 10,000 Americans.


The NSA kicked its large spy campaign into high gear in the 1960s, especially under President Johnson. The FBI demanded that the NSA monitor antiwar activists, civil-rights leaders, and drug peddlers.


However, there is evidence that Operation CHAOS began much earlier—in 1959, when President Eisenhower used the CIA to seek exiles who were fleeing Cuba after Castro's triumphant revolution. The CIA sought contacts in the exile community to recruit them for use against Castro—arguably illegal, although Eisenhower ordered FBI director Hoover to accept it as a legitimate CIA function. The CIA considered this a normal extension of its authorized infiltration of dissident groups abroad, even though the activity was taking place within the United States. Disdain for Congress permeated the upper echelons of the CIA. Congress could not hinder or regulate what it did not know about, and neither the president nor the director of the CIA told them.

The Department of Defense, the Directorate for Civil Disturbance Planning and Operations, and the US Army Intelligence Command conducted domestic surveillance on thousands of US citizens throughout the 1960s. More than 1,500 Army plainclothes intelligence agents worked out of 350 separate offices and record centers to spy on ordinary US residents. They operated without authority from Congress, the president, or the Secretary of the Army. Databanks were kept on as many as 100,000 individual entries, focusing on the feared civil-rights movement and the "New Left" anti-Vietnam War movement. The assumption was that there were foreign influences on the civil-rights and antiwar movements. During 1967 to 1974, presidents Johnson and Nixon repeated Wilson's World War I OMI activities through the Army Security Agency, which worked with other military intelligence units to illegally survey the communications and activities of US citizens who expressed opposition to the war. Called Operation MINARET, it kept a watch list of suspected Americans and collected their phone calls and telegrams made in and out of the country. The names were submitted to the NSA by other agencies, because the targets were suspected of involvement in terrorism, drug trafficking, threats to the president, and civil disturbances.

The Department of Justice's Internal Security Division, established under President Nixon, worked with a vast network of domestic intelligence agencies, including Nixon's own Huston Plan (the "White House Plumbers&quot , acquiring information and conducting dirty tricks on "persons and organizations not affiliated with the Department of Defense."



Nixon the Plumber was veep for Ike. Before that job, he was the hired congressboy for one Prescott S. Bush, Sr.

July 22, 2013

Domestic Surveillance: The History of Operation CHAOS

Why Frank Church* warned us:

Domestic Surveillance:

The History of Operation CHAOS

by Verne Lyon
from Covert Action Information Bulletin, Summer 1990
Verne Lyon is a former CIA undercover operative who (became) a director of the Des Moines Hispanic Ministry.

For over fifteen years, the CIA, with assistance from numerous government agencies, conducted a massive illegal domestic covert operation called Operation CHAOS. It was one of the largest and most pervasive domestic surveillance programs in the history of this country. Throughout the duration of CHAOS, the CIA spied on thousands of U.S. citizens. The CIA went to great lengths to conceal this operation from the public while every president from Eisenhower to Nixon exploited CHAOS for his own political ends.

One can trace the beginnings of Operation CHAOS to 1959 when Eisenhower used the CIA to "sound out" the exiles who were fleeing Cuba after the triumph of Fidel Castro's revolution. Most were wealthy educated professionals looking for a sympathetic ear in the United States. The CIA sought contacts in the exile community and began to recruit many of them for future use against Castro. This U.S.-based recruiting operation was arguably illegal, although Eisenhower forced FBI Director J. Edgar Hoover to accept it as a legitimate CIA function. Congress and the public showed no interest in who was recruiting whom.


This activity led the CIA to establish proprietary companies, fronts, and covers for its domestic operations. So widespread did they become that President Johnson allowed the then CIA Director, John McCone, to create in 1964 a new super-secret branch called the Domestic Operations Division (DOD), the very title of which mocked the explicit intent of Congress to prohibit CIA operations inside the U.S. (2) This disdain for Congress permeated the upper echelons of the CIA. Congress could not hinder or regulate something it did not know about, and neither the President nor the Director of the CIA was about to tell them. Neither was J. Edgar Hoover, even though he was generally aware that the CIA was moving in on what was supposed to be exclusive FBI turf. (3)


As campus anti-war protest activity spread across the nation, the CIA reacted by implementing two new domestic operations. The first, Project RESISTANCE, was designed to provide security to CIA recruiters on college campuses. Under this program, the CIA sought active cooperation from college administrators, campus security, and local police to help identify anti-war activists, political dissidents, and "radicals." Eventually information was provided to all government recruiters on college campuses (6) and directly to the super-secret DOD on thousands of students and dozens of groups. The CIA's Office of Security also created Project MERRIMAC, to provide warnings about demonstrations being carried out against CIA facilities or personnel in the Washington area. (7)

Under both Projects, the CIA infiltrated agents into domestic groups of all types and activities. It used its contacts with local police departments and their intelligence units to pick up its "police skills" and began in earnest to pull off burglaries, illegal entries, use of explosives, criminal frame-ups, shared interrogations, and disinformation. CIA teams purchased sophisticated equipment for many starved police departments and in return got to see arrest records, suspect lists, and intelligence reports. Many large police departments, in conjunction with the CIA, carried out illegal, warrantless searches of private properties, to provide intelligence for a report requested by President Johnson and later entitled "Restless Youth." (8)



* “That capability at any time could be turned around on the American people and no American would have any privacy left, such is the capability to monitor everything: telephone conversations, telegrams, it doesn’t matter. There would be no place to hide. If this government ever became a tyranny, if a dictator ever took charge in this country, the technological capacity that the intelligence community has given the government could enable it to impose total tyranny, and there would be no way to fight back, because the most careful effort to combine together in resistance to the government, no matter how privately it was done, is within the reach of the government to know. Such is the capability of this technology.

I don’t want to see this country ever go across the bridge. I know the capability that is there to make tyranny total in America, and we must see it that this agency and all agencies that possess this technology operate within the law and under proper supervision, so that we never cross over that abyss. That is the abyss from which there is no return.” -- Sen. Frank Church (D-Idaho)

Frank Church and the Abyss of Warrantless Wiretapping

Secret government spying on We the People not only is un-American and un-Democratic; it's tyranny.
July 20, 2013

One memory: Helen made a poor choice of words. She was talking about PEACE.

[font size="1"]Helen Thomas, Wayne State University, photograph by Michael Harris[/font size]

Helen Thomas has a right to write what she has found -- as an individual and as a reporter. She also has the right to state her opinion -- as an individual and as a columnist.

That's why I have a problem with people who want to shut up Helen Thomas for saying what she did. She has a Constitutional right and Constitutional authority to report what she knows. Right or wrong and we may disagree, but that is the way American democracy works.

Those who want Helen to shut up also prevent discussion of the root problems of the region. She didn't say "Destroy Israel." She said Israel should get out of Palestine, meaning the West Bank. The illegal "settlements" are a major roadblock to reaching a real peace.

Helen Thomas stated the solution for the Middle East peace process. Israel must stop the illegal, immoral and inhumane treatment of the Palestinian people; and Israel must leave the West Bank to the Palestinians.

Like it or not, that is the only real solution to the conflicts in the Middle East. Peace between people.

PS: The Undercover Rabbi tripped her up, big time. He couldn't have picked a bigger friend of Israel to destroy.
July 18, 2013

The Secret War


by James Bamford
Wired, June 12, 2013


This is the undisputed domain of General Keith Alexander, a man few even in Washington would likely recognize. Never before has anyone in America’s intelligence sphere come close to his degree of power, the number of people under his command, the expanse of his rule, the length of his reign, or the depth of his secrecy. A four-star Army general, his authority extends across three domains: He is director of the world’s largest intelligence service, the National Security Agency; chief of the Central Security Service; and commander of the US Cyber Command. As such, he has his own secret military, presiding over the Navy’s 10th Fleet, the 24th Air Force, and the Second Army.


What’s good for Alexander is good for the fortunes of the cyber-industrial complex, a burgeoning sector made up of many of the same defense contractors who grew rich supplying the wars in Iraq and Afghanistan. With those conflicts now mostly in the rearview mirror, they are looking to Alexander as a kind of savior. After all, the US spends about $30 billion annually on cybersecurity goods and services.

In the past few years, the contractors have embarked on their own cyber building binge parallel to the construction boom at Fort Meade: General Dynamics opened a 28,000-square-foot facility near the NSA; SAIC cut the ribbon on its new seven-story Cyber Innovation Center; the giant CSC unveiled its Virtual Cyber Security Center. And at consulting firm Booz Allen Hamilton, where former NSA director Mike McConnell was hired to lead the cyber effort, the company announced a “cyber-solutions network” that linked together nine cyber-focused facilities. Not to be outdone, Boeing built a new Cyber Engagement Center. Leaving nothing to chance, it also hired retired Army major general Barbara Fast, an old friend of Alexander’s, to run the operation. (She has since moved on.)

Defense contractors have been eager to prove that they understand Alexander’s worldview. “Our Raytheon cyberwarriors play offense and defense,” says one help-wanted site. Consulting and engineering firms such as Invertix and Parsons are among dozens posting online want ads for “computer network exploitation specialists.” And many other companies, some unidentified, are seeking computer and network attackers. “Firm is seeking computer network attack specialists for long-term government contract in King George County, VA,” one recent ad read. Another, from Sunera, a Tampa, Florida, company, said it was hunting for “attack and penetration consultants.”

One of the most secretive of these contractors is Endgame Systems, a startup backed by VCs including Kleiner Perkins Caufield & Byers, Bessemer Venture Partners, and Paladin Capital Group. Established in Atlanta in 2008, Endgame is transparently antitransparent. “We’ve been very careful not to have a public face on our company,” former vice president John M. Farrell wrote to a business associate in an email that appeared in a WikiLeaks dump. “We don’t ever want to see our name in a press release,” added founder Christopher Rouland. True to form, the company declined Wired’s interview requests.



PS: Thank you for your kind words, RobertEarl. You and all DUers who stand up for the Constitution, including the parts about a free press and freedom of speech, in reality are helping Gen. Alexander in keeping our nation free.

July 18, 2013

Interview with NSA expert James Bamford

SF Gate, July 17, 2013


Q: What do you make of Edward Snowden’s actions?

A: With regard to the information he released on domestic surveillance, I consider him a whistleblower. He revealed details of massive violations by the NSA of the privacy rights of all Americans. The NSA has no constitutional right to secretly obtain the telephone records of every American citizen on a daily basis, subject them to sophisticated data mining and store them forever. It’s time government officials are charged with criminal conduct, including lying to Congress, instead of going after those exposing the wrongdoing.

Q: What has changed the most about the NSA since your last book, “The Shadow Factory,” came out in 2008?

A: The agency has expanded enormously, in terms of size, power and invasiveness since “The Shadow Factory” was published. As I wrote in my Wired magazine cover story last year, the agency has been going on a massive building spree, expanding eavesdropping locations around the world, including one for 4,000 intercept operators at its facility near Augusta, Ga. In addition, it is in the process of building a gigantic one million square-foot surveillance center in Utah where it will store billions of records, phone calls, email and Google searches, many of them involving Americans.

The agency has also increased enormously in power. In my current July 2013 cover story in Wired, I write about Gen. Keith Alexander, the director of NSA, and how he has become the most powerful figure in the history of American intelligence. Never before has anyone in America’s intelligence sphere come close to his degree of power, the number of people under his command, the expanse of his rule, the length of his reign or the depth of his secrecy. As a four-star Army general, his authority extends across three domains: He is director of the world’s largest intelligence service, the National Security Agency; chief of the Central Security Service; and commander of the U.S. Cyber Command. As such, he has his own secret military, presiding over the Navy’s 10th Fleet, the 24th Air Force and the Second Army.


Q: In “The Shadow Factory,” you wrote that the NSA’s watch list — “of people, both American and foreign, thought to pose a danger to the country” — once had only 20 names on it, then rose to “an astonishing half a million.” Do you know what the figure is now?

A: The Terrorist Identities Datamart Environment list, known as TIDE, now contains about 875,000 names.



PS: Thanks for grokking where and to whom all the intel, power and money went, thanks to secret goverment spying, 21st century style.

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