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To anyone who had a passing knowledge of the nature of color revolutions and destabilization efforts in years past, the recent protests in Ukraine were an obvious example of foreign meddling in the domestic affairs of yet another Eastern European nation.
From the initial spates of violence coming largely from the direction of the protesters to the pro-EU and pro-IMF demands, it was clear from the very beginning that the Ukrainian people were being callously pulled back and forth between two world powers indifferent to any interests but their own.
These powers, the United States and Russia, have been covertly jockeying for more and more control over Ukraine, a strategic location for both countries, for the last several years. Yet, as the United States’ power and influence begins to wane and Russia’s begins to increase on the world stage, the risk of both powers clashing over Ukraine in a direct fashion becomes a bigger possibility by the day.
While tensions between the United States and Russia have escalated over the last three years through the Syrian crisis, Ukraine is more than a simple sphere-of-influence region for Russia. It is a sphere-of-influence region that borders the homeland. For this reason alone, the level of importance attributed to Ukraine by Russia is obviously higher than that of Syria in the long run.
Interestingly enough, it is for this same reason that the United States considers Ukraine such a vital sphere-of-influence nation as well. That is, the fact that Ukraine lies on the doorstep of Russia.
Although the reasons for considering Ukraine an extremely important part of the world by both the United States and Russia cannot simply be boiled down to that of a border issue, the fact remains that the potential for a direct collision between two world nuclear powers is a possibility if the meddling continues.
In the meantime, as the Ukrainian people are being used as battering rams for the will of world elites, they are quite clearly the guaranteed loser no matter what decision is made. With the recent success of the Western-backed color revolution, what is also clear is that the only winner in Ukraine is austerity, Fascism, the IMF, and, of course, the world elites. International bankers, as usual, are salivating over the coming feast that will come at the expense of the living standards of the Ukrainian people and the coffers of the Ukrainian government.
Even before a ruling government can be formed by the leading color revolutionary leaders Yatsenyuk, Klitschko, and other relevant agents of destabilization, the acting President, Oleksander Turchinov, is stating that European integration is a high priority of the new government. This, of course, means that Ukraine will soon move forward in becoming a full-fledged member in good standing of the new European Soviet known as the European Union.
In addition, leading contender for the post of Prime Minister, Arseniy Yatsenyuk, and the Parliamentary leader of the Fatherland Party, is now calling on the rest of Parliament to immediately come to agreement on a new government so that Ukraine can now crawl to the International Monetary Fund for “emergency economic assistance.” As one may expect, the IMF has already declared that it will require harsh austerity measures and other “economic changes” in exchange for any aid to Ukraine.
The $15 billion bailout package provided by Russia to Ukraine in December has now been suspended, placing Ukraine in imminent danger of default. The Hryvna, the Ukrainian currency, has been sharply devalued and the country’s bond rating has been downgraded in such a dramatic fashion that Ukraine is no longer able to borrow on international markets. Foreign reserves have also dropped dramatically.
If conditions persist, Ukraine will soon no longer be able to pay public pensions and salaries.
Yet austerity is not the only result of the recent Ukrainian “revolution.” Subtle and even outright Fascism has come to dominate not only the demonstrations themselves but the relatively young “transitional” phase now taking place.
Indeed, this relatively new trend of Fascist rule was enunciated in a recent statement by Natalia Vitrenko of the Progressive Socialist Party of Ukraine, a party that asserts its opposition to both the Orange Revolution installment of Yuschenko as well as the polices of Yanukovych.
Vitrenko first began by describing the nature of the movement used to oust Yanukovych by pointing out that many of the most powerful elements of the anti-Yanukovych movement, or Euromaidan, were indeed fascists and neo-Nazi’s. She stated,
Washington and Brussels should hear our warnings. We hold them responsible for all they have done to transfer power to the political forces responsible for establishing this totalitarian Nazi regime in Ukraine, with the inevitable gross violation of the rights and freedoms of millions of our fellow citizens.
The U.S. and EU should know that this power grab by political parties and movements including neo-Nazi forces (such as “Svoboda – Freedom” and “Right Sector”) , announced the implementation of a national revolution under the slogans “Ukraine for Ukrainians,” “Glory to the nation – death to enemies,” “Muscovite tools and Communists to the gallows!” and others.
Starting on February 22, this new government must assume all responsibility throughout Ukraine for the violation of the rights and freedoms of citizens.
Vitrenko then went on to discuss the events currently unfolding in Ukraine including the capture of government buildings as well as political intimidation, force, beatings, shootings, and even lynchings of those seen as pro-government or opposed to the positions of the Western-backed fascists. Vitrenko states,
Insurgents and terrorists continue to capture Euromaidan administrative buildings and local authorities in the South and East of Ukraine. Using terrorist methods, voters have been deprived of their rights and of the authority of their elected representatives in local councils. Civilians defending their choices have been mercilessly shot by gunmen armed with Kalashinkovs, rifles, and other combat weapons, as for example on February 22 in Lugansk.
Militants not endowed with any legitimate police authority have arrogated emergency police powers to themselves, using axes and sticks to block central thoroughfares, halting cars to carry out inspections and verification of documents of passengers, and arresting people. They have blocked the entrance to the airport and thus grossly violated the European Convention on Human Rights and Fundamental Freedoms, which guarantees the inviolability of the person, freedom of movement, the presumption of innocence, and the right to security and life. All the people of Ukraine have been humiliated and denied their dignity and rights.
Already on February 23 representatives of the new government announced the formation of the Ukrainian nation: they proclaim that anyone who uses the Russian language will be subjected to deprivation of their native-born status of Ukrainian ethnicity and will be discriminated against in civil and political rights.
The new regime has already announced their intention to ban the broadcast channels of the Russian Federation on the territory of Ukraine, branding them as the TV channels of a hostile state . This is the way the new government defends the European values of freedom of speech and freedom of the press.
The regime is preparing lists of enemies who are subject to proscription. This mechanism will deprive of civil and political rights all those who do not share the neo-Nazi views of the new Ukrainian authorities.
Across the country, ghoulish lynchings continue. People are being beaten and stoned, while undesirable members of the Verkhovna Rada of Ukraine are subject to mass intimidation and local officials see their families and children targeted by death threats if they do not support the installation of this new political power. The new Ukrainian authorities are massively burning the offices of political parties they do not like, and have publicly announced the threat of criminal prosecution and prohibition of political parties and public organizations that do not share the ideology and goals of the new regime.
In addition, Vitrenko adds that “Euromaidan militants are seizing Orthodox shrines like the Kiev-Pechersk Lavra, seeking to transfer them to dissenting churchmen like Filaret. The intention is to grab all the churches of the Ukrainian Orthodox Church of the Moscow Patriarchate to conform them to the Vatican.”
In other words, those few participants who at first joined the movement to fight against government corruption and for whatever they perceived to be a better political structure or simply those that were paid to fight in the streets, have been pushed out of the movement after the seizure of power was accomplished. In their place are the more militant wings of the movement such as the political parties mentioned above and the brutal thugs sanctioned by Western governments.
In the end, with the full support of the West, particularly the U.S. State Department, the recent successful “regime change” effort in Ukraine still has the potential to turn into an explosive situation in the literal sense. Aside from the moral qualms of allowing foreign powers the ability to dictate to smaller states the political direction which they must take, provoking a confrontation between two major world powers – both with nuclear capability – is a recipe for disaster.
From Syria to Ukraine, a new geopolitical race has been initiated with a clear destination firmly in the minds of the world political elites currently directing both sides of the contest. That direction, while potentially beneficial for those in positions of power, spells nothing but destruction for the rest of us.
Recently by Brandon Turbeville:
- New Reports: Possible Israeli Bombing On Lebanese-Syria Border
- Vaccines: The Needle And The Damage Done
- Brandon Turbeville Interviews Alan Moore: Prepping on a Budget and Self-Defense Weapons of Choice
Brandon Turbeville is an author out of Florence, South Carolina. He has a Bachelor’s Degree from Francis Marion University and is the author of six books, Codex Alimentarius — The End of Health Freedom, 7 Real Conspiracies, Five Sense Solutions and Dispatches From a Dissident, volume 1and volume 2, and The Road to Damascus: The Anglo-American Assault on Syria. Turbeville has published over 275 articles dealing on a wide variety of subjects including health, economics, government corruption, and civil liberties. Brandon Turbeville’s podcast Truth on The Tracks can be found every Monday night 9 pm EST at UCYTV. He is available for radio and TV interviews. Please contact activistpost (at) gmail.com.
Dr. Rima Laibow, Medical Director
Natural Solutions Foundation
The genocidal maniacs are at it again. The usual suspects (WHO, UN, IMF, World Bank, US, Rockefeller and Gates Foundations, etc.) have concocted a new scheme which is, quite literally, nothing short of Agenda 21 at the end of a gun, for your own good, of course. It has lovely, soothing and safe-sounding name: the Global Health Security Initiative (GHSI).
Reading about this monstrous intrusion on our life and health, I channeled the new verse that I am sure they are singing soulfully when they give throat to the Kill The Useless Eaters Rag hit(man) tune (perhaps at Bohemian Grove?). This may be the most ingenious genocidal ploy so far – it certainly had the potential to become easily the deadliest!
Here’s the chorus (which, oddly enough, seems to work equally well in just about every language):
We need ‘em dead
Don’t want ‘em fed
Useless eaters’ human forces
Consume OUR non-renewable natural resources!
Yeah, Yeah, Yeah!
Vectors of disease in every direction.
Making sure that they are dead
Mean’s there’s nothing they can spread
They cannot reproduce:
So diseases are reduced.
Yeah, Yeah, Yeah!
The Global Health Security Initiative (GHSI) is an audacious new plan to “control” infectious disease and antibiotic resistance  which, in 9 dryly worded, reasonable sounding points, neatly wipes out your freedom, your movement, your health choice including your right to refuse vaccines or other “treatment” and, in fact, you very right to be alive. In other words, Agenda 21 arrives in a white coat with an army of enforcers enabled, transnationally, to do whatever it takes to protect you, including relocation, deportation, and termination.
They are confronting a serious security problem, though: If you are alive, after all, you are a potential site of, and source for, infection. But their pet scientists-on-a-leash solved that one rather neatly:
Make sure you are dead. Then, you can’t provide the protectors with the problems of infection, transmission, and you have no descendants who can become infected and transmit disease. Knowing that, don’t you feel safer already?
The UN Secretary General has a couple of red-hot protégés, who have come up with this devastatingly crazy solution to the problem: Reducing population means fewer people to get infections and to spread it. It also means they cannot reproduce so their children will not be born, meaning THEY cannot get or spread infection., VOILA! Abracadabra! Shazam! The world just became safer because there are now fewer infected people and their progeny!
But that’s not enough! The GHSI has set its site on eliminating antibiotic resistance, too. Never mind that captive, corporatist regulators created the problem of antibiotic resistance, which, according to the CDC sickens and kills huge numbers of people per year, created the problem by allowing inhumane and unwholesome factory farm practices using antibiotics to keep stressed and sick animals alive, and permitting genetic markers of antibiotic resistant genes to be used, and spread in a totally uncontrolled fashion, in patented GMO life and “food” forms.,, These genes create antibiotic resistance in the environment, the food chain and – in us.
Such industry-friendly, consumer-dangerous practices were long predicted to create the antibiotic resistance problem which we have now, but regulators have their salaries paid by the government but their futures assured by the industries that they supposedly regulate. The lure to deep corruption and betrayal of the public trust is irresistible for most. The cost is life and health for all, to say nothing of the total loss of regulatory authority and responsibility.
By the way, about 90% of the world’s antibiotic trade is in factory farms. The highly profitable business model is to make sick animals sicker, get us to eat them and then make us even sicker so we use drugs (or, better yet, use drugs and then die).
Of course, if the initiators of GHSI actually wanted to solve these problems, they would abandon the ineffective and dangerous vaccine route, give up on antibiotics which are expensive, toxic and not particularly good for long-term solutions, as we have seen, and concentrate on safe, inexpensive, deployable and available natural solutions to the global health problems.
Unless, of course, the global health problems are the solution to another problem! Such as alleged over-population, perhaps?
If the agenda were really to eliminate and control infectious disease, not population and freedom, GSHI would be vigorously developing and recommending the deployment of Nano silver, which is effective against every known disease-causing organism and which has zero toxicity for any person in any condition. They would be building up stocks of IV Vitamin C, Zinc, selenium and other powerful immune boosting nutrients.
They would also be using their immense resources for the deployment of the technologies which have been shown over and over to eliminate infectious disease: clean and abundant food and water, clean air, improved hygiene. These are the strategies that reduced diseases in the 20th century, not dangerous vaccines or even antibiotics.
Of course, there is another way to halt the global infectious disease threat: stop creating it.
Laboratories of private companies like Monsanto create monstrosities and then skip free of any consequences. For example, it appears that MSRA was created in a laboratory in France and flushed down the drain by lab personnel. MSRA kills hundreds of thousands of people or more each year.
New genetic monstrosities like the avian flu (H1N1) apparently intentionally re-crafted with the genetic sequence that made the 1918 flu so deadly woven into it and, evidence suggests, SARS,, and Swine Flu (H5N1), may well all be lab creations: all gifts that keep on giving, via the vaccines that are so strongly correlated with their spread,,.
The hybrid Avian Flu came out of a Mount Sinai School of Medicine 6 year project sponsored not by Osama Bin Laden, but by the US National Institutes of Health (NIH). Swine Flu appears to have originated in a WHO lab.,
To stop the spread of infection, the globalist “health” community could stop producing deadly organisms. That would help a lot, it seems to me.
But GHSI has another idea. Instead, they propose to centralize the dangerous organisms for both research and storage. Hmmmm. Good idea. Make the facilities, which are inherently vulnerable, fewer in number so they can be penetrated, seized, used by the already demonstrably insane genocidalists or other terrorists.
“Mistakes” like the one that Baxter made (when it had an exclusive contract with 18 European countries to supply vaccines in the event of a flu pandemic) when it sent vast amounts of vaccine contaminated with live, infective H1N1 virus to those 18 countries won’t happen again, right?
The vial of similarly infective H1N1 viruses which “mysteriously” exploded in a passenger compartment on a crowded train in Switzerland would never happen again, right? What a great plan.
Clearly, the lunatic and lethal Global Health Security Initiative must be halted. You can help make that happen. Visit http://TinyURL.com/EndGHSI NOW to tell your legislators and decision makers not to fund or support GHSI immediately. Then send the link to everyone you can reach.
Don’t forget to LIKE, Share and Tweet the Action Item, http://TinyURL.com/EndGHSI .
Friend us at FB: /NaturalSolutionsFoundation. Friend us in Spanish at FB: /NaturalSolutionsChile
Act as if your life depends upon it. It does.
Sources and Notes:
 Bonds, M.H. & Rohani, P., Reducing Fertility More Effective than Vaccinating for Global Health and Economic Development; A Simple Ecological Framework. J.Roy. Soc.Interface 7:541-547.
 Bonds, M.H. 2006. “Sociality, Sterility, and Poverty; Host-Pathogen Coevolution, with
Implications for Human Ecology,” Ph.D. Dissertation (Ecology), University of Georgia, Athens, GA
 At least sickening hundreds of thousands and killing at least 23,000 annually in the US alone.http://www.cdc.gov/drugresistance/threat-report-2013/
 Levy, Stuart B. (March 1998). “The Challenge of Antibiotic Resistance”. Scientific American: 46–53.
 Wegener, H. C. (2003). “Antibiotics in animal feed and their role in resistance development”. Current Opinion in Microbiology 6 (5): 439–445.doi:10.1016/j.mib.2003.09.009
 There is a significant difference between colloidal silver, which I do not recommend unless there is no other option, and nano silver which I do recommend. To enhance its effectiveness further, nano silver should be frequency enhanced like Silver Sol, www.DrRimaKnows.com, but whatever nano silver is accessed, it should be stored in reasonable quantity since it has a long shelf life and may become unavailable.
 Alexander Batalin (29 April 2003). “SARS Pneumonia Virus, Synthetic Manmade, according to Russian Scientist”. Centre for Research on Globalisation. Retrieved 2007-08-16. (reporting on a news conference in Irkutsk (Siberia) on 10 April 2003)
 “SARS could be biological weapon: experts”. ABC News. April 12, 2003.
 “Sars biological weapon?”. http://www.news24.com. 11 April 2003
 Increased Risk of Noninfluenza Respiratory Virus Infections Associated With Receipt of Inactivated Influenza Vaccine; Clinical Infectious Diseases; Benjamin J. Cowling, Vicky J. Fang, Hiroshi Nishiura,
Kwok-Hung Chan, Sophia Ng, Dennis K. M.lp, Susan S. Chiu, Gabriel M. Leung} and J. S. Malik Peir; DOI: 10.1093/cid/cis307
Rima E. Laibow, MD, who is licensed to practice medicine in 3 states, has practiced drug free medicine and psychiatry for nearly 45 years. She is the Medical Director of the Natural Solutions Foundation, www.DrRimaTruthReports.com, the world’s largest Health Freedom organization. Her email is DrRima@GlobalHealthFreedom.org.
It’s not just that banks are no longer needed–they pose a needless and potentially catastrophic risk to the nation. To understand why, we need to understand the key characteristics of risk.
The entire banking sector is based on two illusions:
1. Thanks to modern portfolio management, bank debt is now riskless.
2. Technology only enhances banks’ tools to skim profits; it does not undermine the fundamental role of banks.
The global financial meltdown of 2008-09 definitively proved riskless bank debt is an illusion. If you want to understand why risk cannot eliminated, please read Benoit Mandelbrot’s book The (Mis)Behavior of Markets.
Technology does not just enable high-frequency trading; it enables capital and borrowers to bypass banks entirely. I addressed this yesterday in Banks Are Obsolete: The Entire Parasitic Sector Can Be Eliminated.
Unfortunately for banks, higher education, buggy whip manufacturers, etc., monopoly and propaganda are no match for technology. Just because a system worked in the past in a specific set of technological constraints does not mean it continues to be a practical solution when those technological constraints dissolve.
The current banking system is essentially based on two 19th century legacies. In that bygone era, banks were a repository of accounting expertise (keeping track of multitudes of accounts, interest, etc.) and risk assessment/management expertise (choosing the lowest-risk borrowers).
Both of these functions are now automated. The funny thing about technology is that those threatened by fundamental improvements in technology attempt to harness it to save their industry from extinction. For example, overpriced colleges now charge thousands of dollars for nearly costless massively open online courses (MOOCs) because they retain a monopoly on accreditation (diplomas). Once students are accredited directly–an advancement enabled by technology–colleges’ monopoly disappears and so does their raison d’etre.
The same is true of banks. Now that accounting and risk assessment are automated, and borrowers and owners of capital can exchange funds in transparent digital marketplaces, there is no need for banks. But according to banks, only they have the expertise to create riskless debt.
It’s not just that banks are no longer needed–they pose a needless and potentially catastrophic risk to the nation. To understand why, we need to understand the key characteristics of risk.
Moral hazard is what happens when people who make bad decisions suffer no consequences. Once decision-makers offload consequence onto others, they are free to make increasingly risky bets, knowing that they will personally suffer no losses if the bets go bad.
The current banking system is defined by moral hazard. “Too big to fail” also means “too big to jail:” no matter how criminal or risky the bank managements’ decisions, the decision-makers not only suffered no consequences, they walked away from the smouldering ruins with tens of millions of dollars in personal wealth.
Absent any consequence, the system created perverse incentives to pyramid risky bets and derivatives to increase profits–a substantial share of which flowed directly into the personal accounts of the managers.
The perfection of moral hazard in the current banking system can be illustrated by what happened to the last CEO of Lehman Brother, Richard Fuld: he walked away from the wreckage with $222 million. This is not an outlier; it is the direct result of a system based on moral hazard, too-big-to-jail and perverse incentives to increase systemic risk for personal gain.
And who picked up all the losses? The American taxpayer. Privatize profits, socialize losses: that’s the heart of moral hazard.
Concentrating the ability to leverage stupendous systemic bets in a few hands leads to a concentration of risk. Just before America’s financial sector imploded, banks had pyramided $2.5 trillion in dodgy mortgages into derivatives and exotic financial instruments with a face value of $35 trillion–14 times the underlying collateral and more than double the size of the U.S. economy.
In a web-enabled transparent exchange of borrowers bidding for capital, the risk is intrinsically dispersed over millions of participants. Not only is risk dispersed, but the consequences of bad decisions and bad bets fall solely to those who made the decision and the bet. This is the foundation of a sound, stable, fair financial system.
In a transparent marketplace of millions of participants, a handful of participants will be unable to acquire enough profit to capture the political process. The present banking system is not just a financial threat to the nation, it is a political threat because its outsized profits enable bankers to capture the regulatory and governance machinery.
chart courtesy of Market Daily Briefing
The problem with concentrating leverage and moral hazard is that risk is also concentrated. And when risk is concentrated rather than dispersed, it inevitably breaks out of the “riskless” corral. This is the foundation of my aphorism: Central planning perfects the power of threats to bypass the system’s defenses.
We can understand this dynamic with an analogy to bacteria and antibiotics. By attempting to eliminate the risk of infection by flooding the system with antibiotics, central planning actually perfects the search for bacteria that are immune to the antibiotics. These few bacteria will bypass the system’s defenses and destroy the system from within.
The banking/financial sector claims to be eliminating risk, but what it’s actually doing is perfecting the threats that will destroy the system from within. Another way to understand this is to look at what happened to home mortgages in the runup to the meltdown of 2008: the “safest” part of the financial sector ended up triggering the collapse of the entire pyramid of risk.
Once we concentrate risk and impose perverse incentives and moral hazard as the foundations of our financial/banking system, then we guarantee the risk will explode out of whatever sector is considered “safe.”
Once you eliminate the “risk” of weak bacteria, you perfect the threat that will kill the host.
The banking sector cannot be reformed, for its very nature is to concentrate systemic risk and moral hazard into breeding grounds of systemic collapse. The only way to eliminate the threat posed by banks is to eliminate the banks and replace them with transparent exchanges where borrowers and owners of capital openly bid for yield (interest rates) and capital.
Bankers (and their fellow financial parasites) will claim they are essential and the nation will collapse without them. But this is precisely opposite of reality: the very existence of banks threatens the nation and democracy.
One last happy thought: technology cannot be put back in the bottle. The financial/banking sector wants to use technology to increase its middleman skim, but the technology that is already out of the bottle will dismantle the sector as a function of what technology enables: faster, better, cheaper, with greater transparency, fairness and the proper distribution of risk.
There may well be a place for credit unions and community banks in the spectrum of exchanges, but these localized, decentralized enterprises would be unable to amass dangerous concentrations of risk and political influence in a truly transparent and decentralized system of exchanges.
Of related interest:
Certainty, Complex Systems, and Unintended Consequences (February 14, 2014)
Our Middleman-Skimming Economy (February 11, 2014)
Unlike so many television shows, House of Cards shows how politicians use their power to help themselves and their friends – not the people who elected them. The fictional character at the center of the series, Frank Underwood, shows us the pitfalls of bureaucratic democracy. As professor Steve Horwitz explains in this brief clip, the series exposes the truth of public choice theory, rent seeking behavior, psychopathic tendencies, Machiavellian inclinations, corruption, and scandal. House of Cards is not that far from reality theses days and the following 3 lessons should be heeded by every voter.
Policy makers should value environmental, health benefits of small-scale local farming, researcher argues.
While the biotech industry continues to assert that modern-day farming must be driven by genetic modification in order to provide more consistent crop production in ever greater numbers, an increasing number of independent studies argue just the opposite.
When it comes to food production, it is one of the manymyths of GMO; GMOs do not provide more food, but do offer Big Ag companies increased profits on the need for more pesticides, herbicides, and patented seeds.
Natural agriculture practices are the real answer, and another new study backs it up.
We are often shown images of starving people in Third World countries who presumably need saving by corporate conglomerates. However, in just one example, poverty-stricken rice and potato farmers in India confirmed record-breaking yields after switching to truly organic food production. (Source)
This is a similar story as others reported in Africa, with incredible additional benefits to the economy and human rights (read the full report here).
Another study showed that biodiversity from polyculture outperforms industrial farming by reducing the chemicals required.
A study by the University of California, Berkeley, presented exhaustive alternatives to current practices. One section of the paper cited research pointing to the positive effects of biodiversity on the numbers of herbivore pests, finding that polycultural planting led to reduction of pest populations by up to 64%. Later, combined results of hundreds of comparisons also favored biologically diverse farms with a 54% increase in pest mortality and damage to crops dropping by almost 25%. The introduction of more diverse insects also promoted increased pollination and healthier crops.(sourceecology and society)
And yet another:
A 9-year study conducted by researchers from the USDA, University of Minnesota and Iowa State University proved that in more complex systems, yield AND profits were both enhanced. When paired against the conventional corn/soy rotation, less fertilizer was used. This difference actually increased over the course of the study, indicating the quality of the soil was improving over time, instead of experiencing the depletion of common practices. (source Union of Concerned Scientists)
The switch to local farming methods protects and enhances this essential biodiversity that is now increasingly lacking around the world according to Timothy Johns, Professor of Human Nutrition at McGill University in Montreal.
Diets for most people around the world are becoming increasingly limited in biological and nutritional diversity. “Large-scale agriculture is characteristically simplified and less diverse than small-holder agriculture,” Prof. Johns cautions. “This is true in genetic, ecological and nutritional terms.”
The answer, according to Johns, is to use the intrinsic benefits of local farming; namely the “range of wild species of fruit, vegetables, condiments and medicines, as well as wild animal-sourced foods,” but then couple that with new technologies that can help local farmers meet the productivity levels needed for an increasing population.
Johns’ conclusions fly in the face of what we are consistently told by mega food corporations like Monsanto; that only they have the capacity to feed an exploding global population. On the contrary, local farming empowered with technology can surpass large-scale growing operations. Professor Johns explains:
Using family members in farming reduces labor and supervision costs, while a more intimate knowledge of the local soil, plants and animals enables smallholders to maximize output. In Brazil, for example, national data from the Censo Agropecuário shows that “family farms” produce 38 percent of national agricultural value from 24 percent of the agricultural land. An assessment of 286 projects in 57 countries, moreover, shows that low-cost, sustainable and diversity-enhancing technologies increased average crop yields on small farms by 79 percent since the early 1990s.
This research highlights the importance of local culture in offering inherent knowledge of which products grow best within a given region, while also preserving the health benefits that have been established through the same train of communicated knowledge.
“Products of biodiversity within culturally-based diets provide essential micronutrients and lower prevalence of diet-related chronic disease.”
Professor Johns specifically notes a developing malady in the First World – being obese, but lacking nutrients that provide true health. In other words, most of the First World is not caloriedeficient, they are deficient in trace minerals and nutrients:
Carbohydrates — mainly cereals, sugars, potatoes and other tubers — and vegetable oils produced efficiently by large-scale agriculture and distributed through global trade are more affordable for many people than lower-calorie, more nutritious foods. In many cases, the result is a form of malnutrition defined by overconsumption of calories. This has helped fuel a growing global epidemic of obesity and chronic diseases such as diabetes and cardiovascular disease.
Johns research urges policy makers to look more closely at the growing body of research indicating that the Monsantos of the world are not the be-all, end-all answer to starving populations and the undernourished; the answer lies in local family farming that supports the previous studies linked above. In all of these studies, it is not only bellies that get filled; it is the strengthening of entire communities economically, socially, and culturally, while still providing healthy nutritious food.
Johns offers one concrete example of how this functions:
Brazil’s National School Feeding Law and program since 2009 requires that at least 30 percent of food in the program must come from family agriculture. It also has explicit guidelines for the use of healthy food in school menus, including foods that respect the culture and traditions; and it provides incentives for the purchase of diversified foods, preferably from local family agriculture.
“Food-policy makers around the world should seek to develop novel compensation mechanisms that reflect the benefits of small-scale, biodiverse agriculture . . . This may involve direct subsidies to farmers, but it must also involve investment in extension services, infrastructure, supply-chain research and development, and progressive market regulation.”
In lieu of solutions being found in the compromised political institutions of the West, which are often populated by the revolving door of corporate farming, I would urge readers to investigate novel technologies that are showing great promise for both small- and large-scale farming that have the power to supercharge natural production anywhere in the world – found in the following article links:
- Can Radio Waves Completely Transform Agriculture?
- New High Tech GrowCubes Offer Indoor Gardening Solutions
- Lessons in Farming with Limited Space on a Limited Budget
For more information on the symposium being given by Professor Timothy Johns please visit: http://aaas.confex.com/aaas/2014/webprogram/Session7028.html
If you have been waiting for the “global economic crisis” to begin, just open up your eyes and look around. I know that most Americans tend to ignore what happens in the rest of the world because they consider it to be “irrelevant” to their daily lives, but the truth is that the massive economic problems that are currently sweeping across Europe, Asia and South America are going to be affecting all of us here in the U.S. very soon.
Sadly, most of the big news organizations in this country seem to be more concerned about the fate of Justin Bieber’s wax statue in Times Square than about the horrible financial nightmare that is gripping emerging markets all over the planet. After a brief period of relative calm, we are beginning to see signs of global financial instability that are unlike anything that we have witnessed since the financial crisis of 2008. As you will see below, the problems are not just isolated to a few countries. This is truly a global phenomenon.
Over the past few years, the Federal Reserve and other global central banks have inflated an unprecedented financial bubble with their reckless money printing. Much of this “hot money” poured into emerging markets all over the world. But now that the Federal Reserve has begun “tapering” quantitative easing, investors are taking this as a sign that the party is ending. Money is being pulled out of emerging markets all over the globe at a staggering pace and this is creating a tremendous amount of financial instability. In addition, the economic problems that have been steadily growing over the past few years in established economies throughout Europe and Asia just continue to escalate.
The following are 20 signs that the global economic crisis is starting to catch fire…
#1 The unemployment rate in Greece has hit a brand new record high of 28 percent.
#2 The youth unemployment rate in Greece has hit a brand new record high of 64.1 percent.
#3 The percentage of bad loans in Italy is at an all-time record high.
#5 The number of jobseekers in France has risen for 30 of the last 32 months, and at this point it has climbed to a new all-time record high.
#6 The total number of business failures in France in 2013 was even higher than in any year during the last financial crisis.
#7 It is being projected that housing prices in Spain will fallanother 10 to 15 percent as their economic depression deepens.
#8 The economic and political turmoil in Turkey is spinning out of control. The government has resorted to blasting protesters with pepper spray and water cannons in a desperate attempt to restore order.
#10 Gangs of armed bandits are roaming the streets in Venezuela as the economic chaos in that troubled nation continues to escalate.
#11 China appears to be very serious about deleveraging. The deflationary effects of this are going to be felt all over the planet. The following is an excerpt from Ambrose Evans-Pritchard’s recent article entitled “World asleep as China tightens deflationary vice“…
China’s Xi Jinping has cast the die. After weighing up the unappetising choice before him for a year, he has picked the lesser of two poisons.
The balance of evidence is that most powerful Chinese leader since Mao Zedong aims to prick China’s $24 trillion credit bubble early in his 10-year term, rather than putting off the day of reckoning for yet another cycle.
This may be well-advised for China, but the rest of the world seems remarkably nonchalant over the implications.
#12 There was a significant debt default by a coal company in China last Friday…
A high-yield investment product backed by a loan to a debt-ridden coal company failed to repay investors when it matured last Friday, state media reported on Wednesday, in the latest sign of financial stress in China’s shadow bank sector.
#13 Japan’s Nikkei stock index has already fallen by 14 percent so far in 2014. That is a massive decline in just a month and a half.
#14 Ukraine continues to fall apart financially…
The worsening political and economic circumstances in Ukraine has prompted the Fitch Ratings agency to downgrade Ukrainian debt from B to a pre–default level CCC. This is lower than Greece, and Fitch warns of future financial instability.
#15 The unemployment rate in Australia has risen to the highest level in more than 10 years.
#16 The central bank of India is in a panic over the way that Federal Reserve tapering is affecting their financial system.
#17 The effects of Federal Reserve tapering are also being felt in Thailand…
In the wake of the US Federal Reserve tapering, emerging economies with deteriorating macroeconomic figures or visible political instability are being punished by skittish markets. Thailand is drifting towards both these tendencies.
#18 One of Ghana’s most prominent economists says that the economy of Ghana will crash by June if something dramatic is not done.
#20 The behavior of the U.S. stock market continues to parallel the behavior of the U.S. stock market in 1929.
Yes, things don’t look good right now, but it is important to keep in mind that this is just the beginning.
This is just the leading edge of the next great financial storm.
The next two years (2014 and 2015) are going to represent a major “turning point” for the global economy. By the end of 2015, things are going to look far different than they do today.
None of the problems that caused the last financial crisis have been fixed. Global debt levels have grown by 30 percent since the last financial crisis, and the too big to fail banks in the United States are 37 percent larger than they were back then and their behavior has become even more recklessthan before.
As a result, we are going to get to go through another “2008-style crisis”, but I believe that this next wave is going to be even worse than the previous one.
So hold on tight and get ready. We are going to be in for quite a bumpy ride.
Shinzo Abe’s Nationalist Strategy
With his overt nationalism and his historical revisionism, Shinzo Abe has a plan for Japan.
The world is now beginning to realize Japanese Prime Minister Shinzo Abe’s true intentions. With his controversial visit to the Yasukuni shrine, which memorializes war dead, including Class A war criminals such as Hideki Tojo, he is no longer hesitant to reveal his true nature: without question, the most conservative leader in Japan’s postwar history. And he is a historical revisionist, notably with respect to wartime Japan. By encouraging a spirit of nationalism, Abe is hoping to engender self-confidence and patriotism among the Japanese public.
But what exactly is his future agenda? To understand Abe’s political ambitions, you need to understand their take on modern Japan.
For mainstream Japanese conservatives such as the Abe family, Tokyo has been shackled since it accepted the judgments of the International Military Tribunal for the Far East, known as the Tokyo Trials. For one thing, as a defeated nation Japan has always been forced to take a servile position— militarily and diplomatically—toward the U.S., the World War II victor. And Japan has had to repeatedly bow its head to its neighbors, such as China and South Korea, to apologize for its conduct during the war.
Willingly or not, Japan embraced these two international restraints when it signed the San Francisco Peace Treaty in 1951, hoping to return to the fold of the international community as an independent nation.
More than 60 years later, though, the Abe administration wants to free Japan from these perceived shackles. In his own words, he is seeking a “departure from the postwar regime” by “bringing back Japan.” Although Abe has never said from “what” he will bring back the nation, many Japanese believe what he meant is to bring back a militarily, diplomatically and economically strong Japan from the political and economic abyss of the past decades, and perhaps in the long term from the U.S. itself.
Although Abe’s popularity has recently tapered somewhat from the heady days early in this, his second stint as prime minister, many Japanese still support his nationalistic program, because they feel that Japan lacks strength and needs to stand on its own feet, amid mounting nationalism in East Asia and a rising China.
So, to return to the question: What is Abe’s grand strategy? In fact, Abe has a three-year plan to accomplish his ultimate goal of having Japan “depart from the postwar regime.”
Abe’s Three-Year Plan
During the first year of his second term in office 2013, Abe proposed a move from “passive pacifism” to a “proactive pacifism” that encourages Japan to contribute more proactively to world peace and international cooperation. He then established a Japanese National Security Council (NSC). He also announced the first National Security Strategy (NSS) and the National Defense Programme Guidelines (NDPG) that introduced the concept of “a Dynamic Joint Defense Force.” This new concept emphasizes the Self-Defense Forces’ (SDF) joint operations and interoperability capability at sea, in the air and on land, and bolster the nation’s defensive posture in the southwest—in particular the Nansei island chain that includes Okinawa and the disputed Senkaku/Diaoyu islands in the East China Sea.
Over the last year, Abe’s government has also enacted a controversial secrecy law to prevent leaks of state secrets, after it was pressured by the U.S. to tighten the confidentiality of their shared intelligence on security.
Now, in his second year, Abe is trying to reinterpret the constitution to allow for the exercise of the right of collective self-defense. Abe will also formally abolish Japan’s decades-old ban on weapons exports this year. In January, his administration revised textbook screening guidelines to give Japanese children a more patriotic take on modern Japanese history and to better reflect the government’s view on territorial issues such as on Senkaku Islands. Abe has also succeeded in placing four conservative intellectuals with whom he has very close ties on Japan’s public television NHK’s management board. Some of their comments have already stirred considerable controversy.
In this third year, 2015, Abe plans to change Article 9 of the U.S.-imposed pacifist constitution, accomplishing his final goal of escaping from the postwar regime.
This three-year plan seeks to boost national security and could lead to Japanese involvement in conflicts abroad in the future.
Shinichi Kitaoka, a former Japanese ambassador to the United Nations and a key Abe adviser, remarked recently that all of these steps are simply trying to bring Japan closer to a “normal country.” Kitaoka is now deputy chairman of Abe’s Advisory Panel on Reconstruction of the Legal Basis for Security, which is expected to recommend reinterpreting Japan’s war-renouncing Constitution to lift the self-imposed ban on the right to exercise collective self-defense in April.
Life often presents us with paradoxes, but seldom so blatant or consequential as the following. Read this sentence slowly: Today it is especially difficult for most people to understand our perilous global energy situation, preciselybecause it has never been more important to do so. Got that? No? Okay, let me explain. I must begin by briefly retracing developments in a seemingly unrelated field—climate science.
Richard Heinberg is the author of eleven books including ‘The Party’s Over’, ‘The End of Growth’, and ‘Snake Oil’. He is Senior Fellow-in-Residence of Post Carbon Institute and is widely regarded as one of the …