An important message from Jesus for you!
There is a lot of economic gloom and doom right now. The economy had been racing up the hill of "fortune," but discovered too late that at the top there was a precipice. Before the brakes could be applied it careened over the cliff and is in free fall. Where the bottom is, no one knows. A few wise heads had warned of this for years, but the temptation of making a fast buck was a strong pull for many. They saw paper fortunes being made hand over fist, and even though their better judgment may have been screaming out, "Don't do it!" they found it irresistible. But "boom" is always followed by "bust," and this was no exception.
Quick money is alluring, and following sound economic theory is boring for many investors. Even though safeguards are put in place after every economic crash, it doesn't take long for the lessons of history to be forgotten. Those who think they know better invest recklessly and bring this kind of mess on everyone. This time it all started because some smart-but-not-wise people thought they could make money by giving loans to people they knew would most likely not be able to repay them. These so called subprime loans were only one trick. The next idea was to take a lot of these loans and package them up into very complex "collateralized debt obligations" and other risky "financial derivatives" and then sell them to others as investments in the hopes the loans would one day be repaid. Banks and other investors all over the world bought and sold these things that they knew probably had no real value. Does this sound mad to you? It did to many at first, but somehow, like the old tale of the emperor's new clothes, enough investors and financiers thought they were exquisite, and eventually nearly everyone began to think it was economic wisdom.
Then one day a bank went bust. Soon other banks started failing too. Governments stepped in to the rescue, using their citizens' tax money. But it hasn't helped much, because it turned out that many banks had numerous bad investments that they either hid or didn't know about. Pessimism set in, and the stock markets dropped dramatically in price as investors realized companies were worth much less than their inflated value. Some people have already lost everything including the shirts off their backs. And with many others no longer having much money to spend, the market in luxury and other non-necessity items has abruptly slowed, and people in companies catering to that market are losing their jobs. Then the effect cascades into the economy in general. The result is higher unemployment, which then means fewer people have money to spend, so more people lose their jobs, and on and on it goes. This is the simple version of what is actually a very complicated process.
So why am I talking to you about the economy? The fact is that I am interested in you and all humanity, and I hurt when you hurt. I want to help, and I will if you ask Me to. I might not put money in the bank for you, but it has already been promised that I will provide for those who give to others and who do what they can to help others in difficulty. And more than this, I will put hope in your heart, which will give you greater ability to ride out the crisis.
Many people place their faith and hope in financial security, but it is better to put your faith and hope in Me, for material security is no security at all. It is a house of cards that falls flat when you lean on it. But I am reliable, and I will see you and your loved ones through any crisis, financial or otherwise. You are of great value to Me, and I want to show you that I can be valuable to you. Humanity is My business, and I will not let anyone down who puts his or her faith in Me and joins My company.
If you are wise and have the wherewithal, it'd be good to make some preparations for further instability, such as having a supply of non-perishable food, drinking water, and other necessities on hand for short-term emergencies. If you can, have your savings in a few different currencies. It is also wise to invest in things that will retain their value, such as gold, that will provide you with a tradable commodity if paper currency or stocks lose their value altogether.
I want you to be secure in heart and mind, because greater insecurity is on the horizon for the world and its economy. There are plans afoot in secret quarters to enmesh everyone in a very dangerous new economic order. The infamous global financial system cryptically spoken of in the Bible's book of Revelation as the "Mark of the Beast"--without which no one will be able to buy or sell--is coming closer to inception every day. Crises like this current one make people yearn for the economic stability that the framers of this new system will proclaim as their aim. The value of the new digital money will be guaranteed, but will come with a price, and that is your allegiance to the global regime that backs it. That coming regime will be the most sinister and tyrannical one that the world has ever seen. Your money may seem safe, but it will cost you as much as your soul.
But I am better than money in the bank, more secure than any investment, and more reliable than any nest egg. Let Me into your heart and life today, and you will find that you will always be able to rely on Me to see you through anything. Just tell Me you believe in Me and it is done!
Protesters attempt to storm Irish parliament
Protesters angry at Ireland's multi-billion efforts to bail out its banks have tried to storm the entrance of the Irish parliament and several have been injured in scuffles with police.
Published:11 May 2010
Gardai Clash with protestors marching against government cutbacks outside the Gates of Leinster House in Dublin Photo: PA
Police say officers staffing the wrought-iron gates drew batons and forced back several dozen protesters. They said the protesters' injuries were minor and none were arrested.
Tens of billions' worth of dud property loans are being transferred from five Irish banks to a new government-run "bad bank." The government also has bought multi-billion stakes in Allied Irish
Gardai said one officer received a minor facial injury during the scuffle.
The march was organised by the Right to Work Campaign, sponsored by the Unite Trade Union.
As the scuffle broke out organisers appealed for calm, which was restored after around a dozen gardai stood at the large iron gates at the front of Leinster House.
Several speakers hit out at the Government's handling of the economic crisis.
Richard Boyd Barrett, of the People Before Profit Alliance, said there had to be a movement of opposition to the Government.
"They (the Government) are bailing out the banks and the institutions and the elite that caused the crisis and they are asking ordinary people, senior citizens, young people to pay the price with brutal cutbacks and it's just not acceptable and people are here to say we're going to stop this and we want an alternative," he said.
"And an alternative that puts people and jobs and our services and a decent quality of life for everyone at the heart of the economic solution to this crisis."
Mr Boyd Barrett said he did not see the scuffle and called for peaceful protest.
But he added: "I think it is quite reasonable for people to vent anger against this Government and to say why is Dail Eireann not reflecting the interests of the people?
"Is it an institution just for elites or is it an institution that is going to represent the people and I suppose that is what was in the minds of the protesters at the front."
Trouble at the Bottom of the Ocean
Methane hydrate threatens more than the oil-spill cleanup.
By Ian Yarett | Newsweek Web Exclusive
May 12, 2010
Building on lessons learned from the failure of the first containment dome on Saturday, BP is currently considering two options to contain the ever-expanding oil spill in the Gulf of Mexico. One possibility is to lower a smaller dome, dubbed the "top hat," over the main leak. The other is to insert a tube directly into the leaking drill pipe to pump the oil and gas to the surface before it can be released into the water.
Both options are designed to avoid the formation of methane hydrate, a solid composed of methane (natural gas) and water that clogged the first containment system. (It's believed that methane gas triggered the explosion that caused the spill.) Produced when water molecules form a cage around methane molecules in relatively low temperature and under high pressure (such as deep under the sea), methane hydrate looks much like ice but readily bursts into flame when ignited. The smaller dome will hold a lot less water for the emerging methane to be exposed to and, additionally, will use heat and antifreeze to minimize hydrate formation. The riser-insertion tube, on the other hand, is intended to allow oil and gas to be pumped directly out of the leaking pipe before it can be exposed to any water, preventing hydrate formation entirely.
The Cover-up: BP's Crude Politics and the Looming Environmental Mega-DisasterWritten by Wayne Madsen
WMR has been informed by sources in the US Army Corps of Engineers, Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA), and Florida Department of Environmental Protection that the Obama White House and British Petroleum (BP), which pumped $71,000 into Barack Obama's 2008 presidential campaign -- more than John McCain or Hillary Clinton, are covering up the magnitude of the volcanic-level oil disaster in the Gulf of Mexico and working together to limit BP's liability for damage caused by what can be called a "mega-disaster."
Obama and his senior White House staff, as well as Interior Secretary Ken Salazar, are working with BP's chief executive officer Tony Hayward on legislation that would raise the cap on liability for damage claims from those affected by the oil disaster from $75 million to $10 billion. However, WMR's federal and Gulf state sources are reporting the disaster has the real potential cost of at least $1 trillion. Critics of the deal being worked out between Obama and Hayward point out that $10 billion is a mere drop in the bucket for a trillion dollar disaster but also note that BP, if its assets were nationalized, could fetch almost a trillion dollars for compensation purposes. There is talk in some government circles, including FEMA, of the need to nationalize BP in order to compensate those who will ultimately be affected by the worst oil disaster in the history of the world.
Plans by BP to sink a 4-story containment dome over the oil gushing from a gaping chasm one kilometer below the surface of the Gulf, where the oil rig Deepwater Horizon exploded and killed 11 workers on April 20, and reports that one of the leaks has been contained is pure public relations disinformation designed to avoid panic and demands for greater action by the Obama administration, according to FEMA and Corps of Engineers sources. Sources within these agencies say the White House has been resisting releasing any "damaging information" about the oil disaster. They add that if the ocean oil geyser is not stopped within 90 days, there will be irreversible damage to the marine eco-systems of the Gulf of Mexico, north Atlantic Ocean, and beyond. At best, some Corps of Engineers experts say it could take two years to cement the chasm on the floor of the Gulf.
Only after the magnitude of the disaster became evident did Obama order Homeland Security Secretary Janet Napolitano to declare the oil disaster a "national security issue." Although the Coast Guard and FEMA are part of her department, Napolitano's actual reasoning for invoking national security was to block media coverage of the immensity of the disaster that is unfolding for the Gulf of Mexico and Atlantic Ocean and their coastlines.
From the Corps of Engineers, FEMA, the Environmental Protection Agency, Coast Guard, and Gulf state environmental protection agencies, the message is the same: "we've never dealt with anything like this before."
The Obama administration also conspired with BP to fudge the extent of the oil leak, according to our federal and state sources. After the oil rig exploded and sank, the government stated that 42,000 gallons per day was gushing from the seabed chasm.Ã‚ Five days later, the federal government upped the leakage to 210,000 gallons a day.
However, WMR has been informed that submersibles that areÃ‚ monitoring the escaping oil from the Gulf seabed are viewing television pictures of what is a "volcanic-like" eruption of oil. Moreover, when the Army Corps of Engineers first attempted to obtain NASA imagery of the Gulf oil slick -- which is larger than that being reported by the media -- it was turned down. However, National Geographic managed to obtain the satellite imagery shots of the extent of the disaster and posted them on their web site.
There is other satellite imagery being withheld by the Obama administration that shows what lies under the gaping chasm spewing oil at an ever-alarming rate is a cavern estimated to be around the size of Mount Everest. This information has been given an almost national security-level classification to keep it from the public, according to our sources.
The Corps and Engineers and FEMA are quietly critical of the lack of support for quick action after the oil disaster by the Obama White House and the US Coast Guard. Only recently, has the Coast Guard understood the magnitude of the disaster, dispatching nearly 70 vessels to the affected area. WMR has also learned that inspections of off-shore rigs' shut-off valves by the Minerals Management Service during the Bush administration were merely rubber-stamp operations, resulting from criminal collusion between Halliburton and the Interior Department's service, and that the potential for similar disasters exists with the other 30,000 off-shore rigs that use the same shut-off valves.
The impact of the disaster became known to the Corps of Engineers and FEMA even before the White House began to take the magnitude of the impending catastrophe seriously. The first casualty of the disaster is the seafood industy, with not just fishermen, oystermen, crabbers, and shrimpers losing their jobs, but all those involved in the restaurant industry, from truckers to waitresses, facing lay-offs.
The invasion of crude oil into estuaries like the oyster-rich Apalachicola Bay in Florida spell disaster for the seafood industry. However, the biggest threat is to Florida's Everglades, which federal and state experts fear will be turned into a "dead zone" if the oil continues to gush forth from the Gulf chasm. There are also expectations that the oil slick will be caught up in the Gulf stream off the eastern seaboard of the United States, fouling beaches and estuaries like the Chesapeake Bay, and ultimately target the rich fishing grounds of the Grand Banks off Newfoundland.
WMR has also learned that 36 urban areas on the Gulf of Mexico are expecting to be confronted with a major disaster from the oil volcano in the next few days. Although protective water surface boons are being laid to protect such sensitive areas as Alabama's Dauphin Island, the mouth of the Mississippi River, and Florida's Apalachicola Bay, Florida, there is only 16 miles of boons available for the protection of 2,276 miles of tidal shoreline in the state of Florida.
Emergency preparations in dealing with the expanding oil menace are now being made for cities and towns from Corpus Christi, Texas, to Houston, New Orleans, Gulfport, Mobile, Pensacola, Tampa-St.Petersburg-Clearwater, Sarasota-Bradenton, Naples, and Key West. Some 36 FEMA-funded contracts between cities, towns, and counties and emergency workers are due to be invoked within days, if not hours, according to WMR's FEMA sources.
There are plans to evacuate people with respiratory problems, especially those among the retired senior population along the west coast of Florida, before officials begin burning surface oil as it begins to near the coastline.
There is another major threat looming for inland towns and cities. With hurricane season in effect, there is a potential for ocean oil to be picked up by hurricane-driven rains and dropped into fresh water lakes and rivers, far from the ocean, thus adding to the pollution of water supplies and eco-systems.
If Joe Lieberman's anti-terror bill becomes law, the Times Square bomb will have worked
A draconian bill proposed by the independent senator would open a Pandora's box of civil liberties issues
Paul Harris, New York
Sunday 9 May 2010
Bombs do not always have to explode to have their desired impact. That would appear to be a simple, and disturbing, lesson to draw from the failed attempt to set off a car bomb in Times Square, New York, last weekend.
If you assume that one of the main aims of terrorists is to use fear to force Americans to change their open society, then the attack, allegedy carried out by Faisal Shahzad, succeeded perfectly well. It took only a few days after the bomb was discovered for independent Connecticut senator Joe Lieberman to propose a draconian new law that would strip US citizenship from anyone linked to foreign terrorists. His move was swiftly backed by leading Republicans.
The bill is a nightmare for those who believe that a democratic society's greatest strength lies in the primacy of the impartial rule of law. "If you have joined an enemy of the United States in attacking the United States to try to kill Americans, I think you sacrifice your rights of citizenship," Lieberman said. The point would be that stripping someone of their citizenship would remove many legal rights. It follows on from the outrage that many Republicans expressed when Shahzad - who is an American - was read his Miranda rights as he was arrested.
There is a legion of reasons why Lieberman's planned law has outraged many, including the fact that it opens a Pandora's box of civil liberties issues. It is also fairly clear that Lieberman and his Republican pals have only Muslim terrorists in mind with this sort of law. Would they have proposed it for rightwing Cuban-Americans who have sponsored anti-Fidel Castro terrorism? Or the many Irish-Americans who have supported IRA terrorists?
Megan McArdle, a columnist for the Atlantic, drew a parallel with America's treatment of its mass murderers and serial killers: "Can someone explain to me - hopefully using graphs and small words - why Joe Lieberman is willing to share the precious blessing of American citizenship with Charles Manson, Gary Ridgway and David Berkowitz, but wants citizenship stripped from a guy who strapped some firecrackers to a bag of non-explosive fertiliser?"
Many remember the hurried passing of the Patriot Act after 9/11. If Lieberman gets his way, it will be the alleged terrorist Shahzad who has the last laugh. His amateurish dud of a bomb will have worked after all.
FCC ignores federal court, moves to regulate Internet
Posted: May 10, 2010
Despite being handed a defeat last month when a federal court ruled that the FCC does not have the power to enforce net neutrality, the regulatory agency is ignoring it.
Obama-appointed FCC Chairman Julius Genachowski is attempting to get the FCC around it by regulating Internet lines under Title 2 of the Communications Act, currently used to oversee the traditional telecom industry.
It's a major issue dividing the Internet community, pitting providers against consumer groups and Internet companies, affecting all stakeholders, from cable providers to the consumers. Learn more about the concerns in this video.
How the Chinese censor the Internet
A pair of researchers are studying international efforts to censor Internet traffic and will present their findings this summer in Italy. Assistant Professor of Computer Science Jed Crandall and Ph.D. student Jong Chun Park will go to Genoa, Italy, this summer to present their latest findings on Internet Censorship to the 30th International Conference on Distributed Computing Systems.
Their paper, "Empirical Study of a National-Scale Distributed Intrusion Detection System: Backbone-Level Filtering of HTML Responses in China," outlines their investigation of the way the Chinese government has tried to censor information via the Internet.
'Something may come through' dimensional 'doors' at LHC
Attack of the Hyperdimensional Juggernaut-Men
By Lewis Page
Posted in Physics, 6th November 2009
A top boffin at the Large Hadron Collider (LHC) says that the titanic machine may possibly create or discover previously unimagined scientific phenomena, or "unknown unknowns" - for instance "an extra dimension".
"Out of this door might come something, or we might send something through it," said Sergio Bertolucci, who is Director for Research and Scientific Computing at CERN, briefing reporters including the Reg at CERN HQ earlier this week.
The LHC, built inside a 27-km circular subterranean tunnel deep beneath the Franco-Swiss border outside Geneva, functions like a sort of orbital motorway for extremely high-speed hadrons - typically either protons or lead ions.
The differences are, firstly, that the streams of particles are moving at velocities within a whisker of light speed - such that each stream has as much energy in it as a normal car going at 1000mph. Secondly, the beams are arranged in such fashion that the two streams swerve through one another occasionally, which naturally results in huge numbers of incredibly violent head-on collisions.
These collisions are sufficiently violent that they are expected to briefly create conditions similar to those obtaining countless aeons ago, not long after the Big Bang, when the entire universe was still inconceivably small - it was smaller than a proton for quite some time, seemingly, still with all the stuff that nowadays makes up all the supra-enormity of space and galaxies and so forth packed in somehow.
Naturally, some extremely strange phenomena are to be expected when one mangles the very fabric of space-time itself in this fashion. Various eccentric nutballs have claimed that this would doom humanity in one fashion or another; perhaps converting the entire Earth, everything on it and possibly the rest of the universe too into "strangelet soup", monopole mulligatawny or some other sort of frightful sub-particulate blancmange or custard.
It has also been suggested that cack-handed boffins at the LHC might inadvertently call into being a miniature black hole and carelessly drop this into the centre of the Earth, rather irritatingly causing the planet to implode. It's certainly to be hoped that the button marked "Call Black Hole Into Being" on the control board has some kind of flip-down cover over it.
Obviously all that's utter rubbish. But some boffins have speculated that black holes might alternatively act as spacewarp wormhole portals into alternate universes, or something. This would seem to chime with Bertolucci's remarks this week on hyperdimensional "doors" out of which might come unspecified "somethings".
The Orwellian logic that's turning the faith Britain was built on into a crime
By Melanie Phillips -
3rd May 2010
Terrifying as this may seem, the attempt to stamp out Christianity in Britain appears to be gathering pace.
Dale McAlpine was preaching to shoppers in Workington, Cumbria, that homosexuality is a sin when he found himself carted off by the police, locked up in a cell for seven hours and charged with using abusive or insulting words or behaviour.
It appears that two police community support officers - at least one of whom was gay - claimed he had caused distress to themselves and members of the public.
Under our anti-discrimination laws, such distress is not to be permitted.
Dale McAlpine was hauled to court after telling a gay police community support officer he thought homosexuality was a sin
And so we have the oppressive and sinister situation where a gentle, unaggressive Christian is arrested and charged simply for preaching Christian principles.
It would appear that Christianity, the normative faith of this country on which its morality, values and civilisation are based, is effectively being turned into a crime.
Surreally, this intolerant denial of freedom is being perpetrated under the rubric of promoting tolerance and equality - but only towards approved groups.
Never has George Orwell's famous satirical observation, that some people are more equal than others, appeared more true
The Cumbrian arrest comes hard on the heels of last week's ruling by Lord Justice Laws in the case of Gary McFarlane, who was dismissed as a Relate counsellor because he refused to give advice to samesex couples on sexual relationships.
The judge not only upheld Relate's case against McFarlane but went even further, saying in terms that the law could provide no legal protection for Christians who wish to live according to their religious principles.
And how did he arrive at this remarkable conclusion that deprives Christians of their rights?
By cherry-picking human rights law.
The judge said merely that this conferred upon believers the right to 'hold or express' religious views.
In fact, the European Convention on Human Rights goes much further, giving people the right to manifest 'freedom of thought, conscience and religion' through 'worship, teaching, practice and observance'.
Yet the judge chose not to mention this right to put religious beliefs into practice.
Instead, he stated that giving legal protection to Christian beliefs was 'deeply unprincipled' and 'on the way to a theocracy'.
You really do have to scratch your head at this. The protection of religious conscience is a fundamental principle of a liberal and free society.
To equate this protection with theocracy - or the imposition of religious law upon a society - displays a remarkable intellectual and moral confusion, and has resulted in a ruling that is frighteningly illiberal and intolerant.
Of course, you could say that this is merely the result of human rights law for which Parliament rather than the judges is responsible.
But the courts could interpret that same human rights law very differently.
The problem is that the judges are refusing to strike a proper balance.
Instead of arbitrating fairly between competing rights by granting exemptions for religious believers from anti-religious laws, they are choosing to impose secular values and thus destroy the right to live and work Christian principles.
What seems to have particularly offended Lord Justice Laws was the idea of protecting certain beliefs specifically because they were religious.
This was wrong, he said, because religious ideas were not applicable to the whole of society, since they existed only in the hearts of religious believers.
He thus appeared, totally, to miss the point - that freedom of conscience is supposedly a right for all, including minorities. It would seem that either a tin ear or, worse, an animosity towards religion drives all before it.
This was what caused the former Archbishop of Canterbury, Lord Carey, to protest in a statement to the court that judges were effectively damning Christianity itself as discriminatory and, therefore, bigoted.
He was so alarmed by the apparent secular prejudice of the judiciary that he suggested the establishment of a special court to deal with cases of religious discrimination composed of judges with some understanding of religious issues.
As if to prove his point, Lord Justice Laws dismissed all his arguments out of hand with the patronising observation that Lord Carey had not understood the law.
On the contrary, it is surely Lord Justice Laws who does not understand that he and his fellow judges are mistaking secularism for neutrality - confusing the secular onslaught upon religion with the need to hold the ring between competing beliefs.
There is a long and growing list of British Christians who have been harassed by the police, sacked or otherwise fallen foul of authority simply for upholding their religious beliefs.
Pensioners have found the police on their doorstep accusing them of 'hate crime' for objecting to their council about a gay pride march or merely asking if they could distribute Christian leaflets alongside the gay rights literature.
A preacher who went around with a placard denouncing homosexuality was prosecuted even though he was the victim of an assault by onlookers who threw soil and water over him.
In the field of employment, Christians have been suspended or sacked for refusing to officiate at civil partnership ceremonies or place children for adoption with gay couples and for wearing a cross or praying with patients for their recovery.
Many of these cases involve the issue of homosexuality since this is the principal area where orthodox Christian beliefs cannot co-exist with the law.
This is in contrast to other contentious issues such as abortion, where the law specifically provides exemptions for conscience.
This is because unlike the specific and limited issue of abortion, the militant gay rights agenda represents an attack on the entire value system of our society by destroying the very idea that any sexual behaviour is normal.
Anyone who says homosexuality is not normal is, therefore, thrown to the wolves as a bigot.
This is what recently happened to the then Conservative parliamentary candidate Philip Lardner.
He said churches should not be forced to have practising homosexual clergy and Christians should not be penalised for politely saying that homosexuality is 'wrong'.
He also said that he would always support the rights of homosexuals to be treated fairly and to live as they wanted in private, but he would not accept that their behaviour was 'normal' or encourage children to indulge in it.
For this expression of traditional Christian - and, indeed, liberal - values, he was not only deselected as a Tory candidate at the speed of light on the grounds that his remarks were 'deeply offensive and unacceptable', but suspended from his job as a primary school teacher.
As Lardner has angrily observed, it appears that Christian views are no longer acceptable within the Conservative party.
Far from their historic role in defending the bedrock values of this society, the Tories have thus put themselves on the side of the illiberal onslaught on freedom of conscience.
Of course, true prejudice and bigotry are wrong, whether towards homosexuals or anyone else.
But the decent impulse to protect the rights of gay people is very different from trying to destroy the bedrock values of our society.
Yet, that is precisely what it has become. As a result, Britain is turning from a liberal Christian country - whose liberalism is rooted in its religious tradition - into an illiberal, oppressive secular state with no room for religious conscience.
Under the camouflage of human rights, this is the way freedom dies.