5.1 Quake off the Californian Coast

No injuries have so far been reported after a 5.1 earthquake hit the Northern Californian coast 70 miles west of Ferndale. According to the United States Geological Survey website, the quake struck at 0416 this morning Pacific time.
The largest earthquake to hit California was a 7.9 in 1887. According to the USGS:
This earthquake occurred on the San Andreas fault, which ruptured from near Parkfield (in the Cholame Valley) almost to Wrightwood (a distance of about 300 kilometers); horizontal displacement of as much as 9 meters was observed on the Carrizo Plain. It caused one fatality. A comparison of this shock to the San Francisco earthquake, which occurred on the San Andreas fault on April 18, 1906, shows that the fault break in 1906 was longer but that the maximum and average displacements in 1857 were larger.
California sits in an area that is geologically very active. Plate margins grind against each other causing the tremors. The San Andreas Fault is a huge gash in the landscape that runs from Cape Mendocino down to the Mexican border. It’s a transform or slide fault. The leading edge of the North American Plate and the Pacific Plate slide past each other.
They move in small fits and starts but on occasion get stuck. The pressure builds and builds, until whatever prominence of rock holding them in position gives way, and the plates move causing an earthquake.

This post was published at The Daily Sheeple on January 2nd, 2015.

Where Have All the Statesmen Gone?

One of the most striking things about the Colder War – as I explore in my new book of the same name – has been the contrast between the peevish tone of the West’s leaders compared to the more grown-up and statesmanlike approach that Putin is taking in international affairs.
Western leaders and their unquestioning media propagandists appear to believe that diplomatic relations are some kind of reward for good behavior. But it’s actually more important to establish a constructive dialogue with your enemies or rivals than your friends, because that’s where you need to find common ground. Indeed, it’s been the basis for diplomacy since time immemorial.
Reassuringly, despite having been the target of the Ukraine crisis rather than the instigator, Putin still sees the West as a potential partner, not an enemy. Nor does, he says, Russia have any interest in building an empire of its own. In theory, if Putin is sincere, there should be plenty of room for cooperation, especially in the fight against terrorism.
As Putin said in his speech at the Valdai International Discussion Club in Sochi in October – whose theme was ‘The World Order: New Rules or a Game without Rules’ – he hasn’t given up on working with the West on shared risks and common goals, provided it’s based on mutual respect and an agreement not to interfere in one another’s domestic affairs.
Putin has, of course, already shown that he can rise above the fray. By negotiating the destruction of Assad’s chemical weapons arsenal under international supervision, he did Obama a big favor and got him off the hook in Syria.
But his collaboration with Obama went further than that. Putin had helped persuade Iran to consider making concessions on its nuclear program and was working behind the scenes on North Korean issues.

This post was published at GoldSeek on 2 January 2015.

Obama Sanctions North Korea For Sony Hack Which Was Perpetrated By Disgruntled Former Employee

US foreign policy just jumped the shark: a few days after both the FBI and the US State department were humiliated when it was revealed that it wasn’t North Korea but a disgruntled, laid off Sony employee that was responsible for the “hack”, moments ago Obama – currently not working out next to a rainbow orflashing the “Shaka” sign – signed an order imposing even more sanctions against North Korea.
From Bloomberg:
President Obama signs order imposing additional sanctions on North Korea in response to country’s ‘efforts to undermine U. S. cyber-security and intimidate U. S.businesses and artists exercising their right of freedom of speech,’ according to Treasury Dept statement. Sanctions target 3 entities, 10 individuals

This post was published at Zero Hedge on 01/02/2015.

ALERT! Computer Glitch Stops US’ Most Advanced F-35 Fighter Jet from Firing Until 2019

The Pentagon’s fighter jet F-35 may not be fully operational until 2019 due to a newly discovered computer glitch. The $400 billion ultra-sophisticated jet, the most expensive in US history, was expected to enter service in 2015.
F-35 is the fifth generation combat aircraft which is designed in three variations for US Air Force, Navy and Marines to replace out of date aircraft. It was planned to join the Marines in 2015 and Air Force in 2016.
It is planned to replace the Air Force’s A-10 Warthog ground attack plane and Lockheed F-16 multirole fighter, the Navy instead of Boeing F/A-18 Hornet carrier-based fighter, and the Marines instead of Boeing AV-8B Harrier II jump-jet.
However, the most awaited plane’s main weapon will not be able to fire due to a computer glitch. The four-barreled rotary cannon for the Air Force version of the F-35 cannot function until new software is elaborated, despite jet scheduled to join the army this year.


This post was published at Investment WatchBlog on January 2nd, 2015.

65% of American children are now dependent on government welfare

Nearly two-thirds of American children now live in households receiving aid from at least one federal agency, according to a recent report from the Census Bureau.
This staggering figure is based on data compiled from interviews from the fall of 2011 that were conducted as part of the 2008 Survey of Income and Program Participation (SIPP).
The federal programs being accessed by these households include Medicaid, the National School Lunch Program, the Temporary Assistance for Needy Families (TANF) program, the Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program (SNAP) and the Special Supplemental Nutrition Program for Women, Infants, and Children (WIC).
Of these programs, the one most commonly participated in was the National School Lunch Program, with an enrollment of 35 million children. In second place was Medicaid (26.4 million participants), followed by SNAP (17.3 million), WIC (6.4 million) and TANF (2.3 million).

This post was published at Natural News on January 02, 2015.

Of Two Minds in 2015

It is clear that we need both practical plans of action for individuals and households and systemic alternatives to the present dysfunctional and doomed status quo.
Occasionally readers inquire about the meaning of this blog’s title, Of Two Minds. There are several answers, but the primary one is: Of Two Minds is the synthesis of two minds–yours and mine.
Longtime readers know that from the inception of the blog ten years ago in May 2005, I have published/incorporated (with credit) an amazing spectrum of reader commentaries and analyses, from long-form essays to short paragraphs.
The advance of my own knowledge depends directly on readers’ commentaries, critiques and analyses, and the network of global correspondents that is Of Two Minds’ primary asset serves the expansion of all readers’ understanding of our troubled times.
In other words, all the other minds that contribute experiences, ideas and explanations advance our collective knowledge, in effect leveraging an enormous network to the benefit of all participants/readers.
In this way, I consider Of Two Minds a working example of New Media Journalism, as it is both individual and global in a way that was not possible prior to the Internet. Newspapers had stringers/free-lancers in various capital cities, but communications from these nodes to the center were too slow and hierarchical to duplicate the non-corporate, non-institutional model of journalism/commentary that is our work in progress here.

This post was published at Charles Hugh Smith on THURSDAY, JANUARY 01, 2015.

Hugh Hendry and the ‘Blue Pill’

Distorted Markets We have always liked Eclectica fund manager Hugh Hendry for his sound views and outspoken manner. Below is a somewhat dated video compilation showing several moments in which he stunned his opponents in television debates by voicing uncomfortable and politically incorrect truths. Included in the video is a defense of speculators, entrepreneurs and other risk takers in the marketplace against statist interventionists and ‘champagne socialists’, which we wholeheartedly agree with. Speculators have a bad name, mainly because they always serve as a convenient scapegoat for politicians (in fact, speculators and merchants have served as scapegoats whenever economic policy failures became apparent since at least the time of the Roman empire). However, they fulfill an extremely important function, as Mr. Hendry points out to his debate opponents.

This post was published at Acting-Man on January 2, 2015.

These 19 States Just Hiked The Minimum Wage: Here Come The “Unintended Consequences”

Starting on January 1, 2015, a one year-delayed component of Obamacare kicks in: according to the health care law, businesses that employ at least 100 full-time workers – or full-time equivalents, including part-time workers – must offer health benefits to at least 70% of those working at least 30 hours a week by Thursday, or pay a penalty. This will expand to by next year, when companies will have to provide insurance to 95% of their workers, and firms with 50 to 99 employees must offer coverage as well. As a result, and as even the USA Today reports, “many businesses in low-wage industries have hired more part-time workers and cut the hours of full-timers recently to soften the impact of new health law requirements that take effect Thursday.”
More details:
Businesses in low-wage sectors, such as restaurants, retail and warehousing, are feeling bigger effects because health insurance represents an outsize share of their total employee costs, says Rob Wilson, head of Employco, a human resources outsourcing firm. Many of those with just fewer than 100 staffers have hired more part-timers in recent months, while those with at least 100 are reducing the hours of existing employees, he says. Michelle Neblett, senior director of labor and workforce policy for the National Restaurant Association, says many restaurants are being more cautious about boosting the workweek of part-timers to 30 hours or more, doling out such increases to reward top performers.
Those strategies have not had a noticeable impact on the labor market. Monthly job growth has averaged 240,000 this year, up from 194,000 in 2013. And full-time employment has increased at about twice the rate of part-time payrolls, Labor Department figures show.
Still, the number of part-time workers who say they’d prefer full-time jobs has remained stubbornly high. That can at least partly be traced to the inclination of the restaurant, retail and hotel industries to hire more part-time workers to sidestep the ACA mandate, Royal Bank of Scotland wrote in a recent report.

This post was published at Zero Hedge on 01/02/2015.

Without “Qualified Immunity,” Would Cops Be So Quick to Kill?

The story had a familiar beginning, but took an unexpected detour en route to an unanticipated conclusion.
Dante Price, a young black man, was trying to visit his girlfriend and infant son at the Summit Square apartment complex in Dayton, Ohio. Price was confronted by two uniformed, armed officers who told him had been banned from the property as a trespasser.
As the encounter grew heated, the officers drew their guns and ordered Price from his car. After the driver refused to comply, one of the officers contacted the Dayton PD to request backup; on the recording, his partner can be heard screaming at Price, ‘Get out of the car, now!’ Instead of exiting his vehicle and prostrating himself at the feet of the officers, Price hit the gas and attempted to flee.
The officers unloaded seventeen shots at Price, three of which struck him. The 25-year-old plowed his Cadillac into a parked car. He was dead before the paramedics arrived.
‘We got a guy trying to assault us with his vehicle,’ one of the officers reported to Dayton PD headquarters immediately after the shooting. ‘We had to fire at him. He charged us.’
Within a few hours, an internal investigation conducted by veteran police officer Ivan G. Burke concluded that the shooting of the unarmed motorist was ‘justified.’ By disobeying orders and attempting to flee, Price had caused the officers to ‘fear for their lives’ and the shooting was therefore an act of self-defense.


This post was published at Lew Rockwell on January 1, 2015.

In 2000, Here’s What the CIA Predicted for 2015

21st Century Wire says…
Back in 2000, in the first days of the Bush Jr presidency, the brain trust at the Central Intelligence Agency got together to work out what would likely be ‘going on’ in 2015.
Mostly, CIA analysts were only predicting the likely time frames for the inevitable fruition of trends which were already in motion – and telling relatively clueless politicians in Washington DC what they wanted to hear. Regarding the Bush administration, it was a case of what NeoConservative politicians wanted to hear at that time.
One interesting item which was included was regarding terrorism, where CIA star-gazers foretold the event only months away, ‘Between now and 2015 terrorist tactics will become increasingly sophisticated and designed to achieve mass casualties’, essentially predicting the attacks of Sept 11, 2001. Anyone who knows their inside baseball would know that of course, the CIA would know what was coming on 9/11, not least of all by looking at ranking CIA agents who were involved in the insider trading of American Airlines stocks before 9/11.
Here is a summary of the Telegraph’s report on the CIA predictions…

This post was published at 21st Century Wire on JANUARY 1, 2015.

‘You’re Either a Cop or Little People’: The American Police State in 2014

‘You’re either a cop or little people.’ – Police captain Harry Bryant in Blade Runner
For those of us who have managed to survive 2014 with our lives intact and our freedoms hanging by a thread, it has been a year of crackdowns, clampdowns, shutdowns, showdowns, shootdowns, standdowns, knockdowns, putdowns, breakdowns, lockdowns, takedowns, slowdowns, meltdowns, and never-ending letdowns.
We’ve been held up, stripped down, faked out, photographed, frisked, fracked, hacked, tracked, cracked, intercepted, accessed, spied on, zapped, mapped, searched, shot at, tasered, tortured, tackled, trussed up, tricked, lied to, labeled, libeled, leered at, shoved aside, saddled with debt not of our own making, sold a bill of goods about national security, tuned out by those representing us, tossed aside, and taken to the cleaners.
As I point out in my book A Government of Wolves: The Emerging American Police State, we’ve had our freedoms turned inside out, our democratic structure flipped upside down, and our house of cards left in a shambles.
We’ve had our children burned by flashbang grenades, our dogs shot, and our old folks hospitalized after ‘accidental’ encounters with marauding SWAT teams. We’ve been told that as citizens we have no rights within 100 miles of our own border, now considered ‘Constitution-free zones.’ We’ve had our faces filed in government databases, our biometrics crosschecked against criminal databanks, and our consumerist tendencies catalogued for future marketing overtures.
We’ve been given the runaround on government wrongdoing, starting with President Obama’s claim that the National Security Agency has never abused its power to spy on Americans’ phone calls and emails. All the while, the NSA has been racing to build a supercomputer that could break through ‘every kind of encryption used to protect banking, medical, business and government records around the world.’ Despite the fact that the NSA’s domestic surveillance program has been shown to be ineffective at preventing acts of terrorism, the agency continues to vacuum up almost 200 million text messages a day.

This post was published at Lew Rockwell on December 31, 2014.

Fluoride Poisoning – A Mere Drop Away

As most of my readers know, I don’t go to traditional medical docs by choice. But I was signed up for Medicaid by the Oregon Health Plan (OHP) when I turned the ripe young age of 60 something. I requested information for an article, and ended up on the rosters. Oh well, I don’t use it, don’t plan to, but keep an eye on it for curiosity’s sake.
So, while looking through my ‘benefits,’ I came across two disturbing things:
My medical provider is called Disease MGT My dental coverage includes something called ‘fluoride varnish.’ As if having a government entity blatantly tell the truth about being a disease management system instead of a health maintenance system wasn’t eye-opening enough, read the following about fluoride varnish, which seems to be all the going rage.
But first, some background information regarding sodium fluoride toxicity:

This post was published at FarmWars on Dec 31, 2014.

FBI bypasses denial in FISA court by writing its own search warrants

The FBI has proven that it can legally dodge even the sparse amount of judicial checks and balances on its ability to search the records of Americans. After being denied twice in FISA Court for an order to collect records from an individual, a secret report reveals that the Bureau subsequently wrote its own order and went through with the surveillance, regardless of the court rejection.
This revelation was found in a recently declassified document, titled ‘A Review of the FBI’s Use of Section 215 Orders for Business Records in 2006′ (PDF). It was written in 2008 by the DOJ Office of the Inspector General but not declassified until December 2014.
BACKGROUND
The issue at hand pertains to the judicial oversight – or lack thereof – on the FBI’s ability to search the papers and effects of private individuals in cases related to national security. Typically in such cases, the Bureau goes through a special court to receive approved orders to obtain particular records on a certain party. As the report explains, ‘Section 215 of the Patriot Act allows the FBI to seek orders from the Foreign Intelligence Surveillance Court (FISA Court) for ‘any tangible things,’ including books, records, and other items from any business, organization, or entity provided the item or items are for an authorized investigation to protect against international terrorism or clandestine intelligence activities’ (page 1).

This post was published at Police State USA on December 31, 2014.

Pepe Escobar: 2015 Will Be All About Iran, China and Russia

Fasten your seat belts; 2015 will be a whirlwind pitting China, Russia and Iran against what I have described as the Empire of Chaos.
So yes – it will be all about further moves towards the integration of Eurasia as the U.S. is progressively squeezed out of Eurasia. We will see a complex geostrategic interplay progressively undermining the hegemony of the US dollar as a reserve currency and, most of all, the petrodollar.

This post was published at Sputnik News

CHEMTRAILS EXPOSED: Global Geoengineering PsyOps Documented

From Chemtrails to Directed Energy Weapons, the System is Set on Total Control…
There has been much speculation in the last few years as to the authenticity of the claims of ‘chemtrail’ spraying of the ionosphere by secretive groups for unknown reasons, with such claims generally receiving the scorn of tinfoil hat insanity. Distinguished from ‘contrails’, the normal water and ice crystal formations that result from aircraft exhaust vapor, ‘chemtrails’ is the popular name for aerosol spraying by planes in different layers of the atmosphere under the cover of numerous global geoengineering programs.
Is this possible? Could there be widespread global aerosol spraying programs? Not only this possible, it’s already being done, and has been going on for decades. With origins in World War II cloud-seeding, the development of weather modification and mass geoengineering programs is no longer even covert, with numerous papers, programs and examples now made public.
With this in mind, it is somewhat shocking the number of trolls and deniers that exist, telling us daily these are fictions of paranoid conspiracists, while any of the above notions can be easily verified with Google and a few minutes of research. Of course, this is not likely to happen, as the public has never heard of the Royal Society, much less ‘geoengineering,’ since Kim Kardashian’s butt is a much more accurate weathervane of the tides of public interest (a very big weathervane).
‘Geoengineering the Climate: Science, Governance and Uncertainty’
In this article, I will document several papers from officialdom, including scientific journals and white papers that demonstrate the programs are real. Not only will we see they are real, we will in fact see these programs integrate with one another and provide the establishment the potential for tremendously disastrous social engineering effects, as well as environmental dangers that result from such dark pragmatic scientistic ends.
Our first document under survey is the Royal Society report ‘Geoengineering the Climate: Science, Governance and Uncertainty,’ a 2009 paper that details the various potentialities for numerous approaches to curbing CO2 emissions, naturally tied in with population reduction and a return to neo-feudalistic model of global ecomonic realignment.

This post was published at 21st Century Wire on DECEMBER 31, 2014.

The Imperial Collapse Playbook

Some people enjoy having the Big Picture laid out in front of them – the biggest possible – on what is happening in the world at large, and I am happy to oblige. The largest development of 2014 is, very broadly, this: the Anglo-imperialists are finally being forced out of Eurasia. How can we tell? Well, here is the Big Picture – the biggest I could find. I found it thanks to Nikolai Starikov and a recent article of his.
Now, let’s first define our terms. By Anglo-imperialists I mean the combination of Britain and the United States. The latter took over for the former as it failed, turning it into a protectorate. Now the latter is failing too, and there are no new up-and-coming Anglo-imperialists to take over for it. But throughout this process their common playbook had remained the same: pseudoliberal pseudocapitalism for the insiders and military domination and economic exploitation for everyone else. Much more specifically, their playbook always called for a certain strategem to be executed whenever their plans to dominate and exploit any given country finally fail. On their way out, they do what they can to compromise and weaken the entity they leave behind, by inflicting a permanently oozing and festering political wound. ‘Poison all the wells’ is the last thing on their pre-departure checklist.
‘ When the British got tossed out of their American Colonies, they did all they could, using a combination of import preferences and British ‘soft power,’ to bolster the plantation economy of the American South, helping set it up as a sort of anti-United States, and the eventual result was the American Civil War.

This post was published at Zero Hedge on 01/01/2015.

Transcending The Soul Hackers

With the closing of another year marked by media hysteria, the narrative that the crazed hermit North Korean regime orchestrated the hacking of the Japanese-owned Hollywood company Sony, thereby assaulting our precious freedom to crank out cultural subversion, has quickly begun to fall apart.
From the beginning the story never held neither consistency nor any forensic evidence. Yet the notion that ruthless Korean dictator Kim Jong Un wants to keep them from the movies, the modern substitute for the West’s emptying churches, has sent cable news consumers into a panic.
Elusive North Korean hackers have joined ISIS, Ebola, and a resurgent Russia on the ever- lengthening list of threats that government and media tell us we must fear. As it stands now, with the script quickly breaking down, the media and government (really two tentacles of the same power structure) are bound to quickly divert attention elsewhere; a new national security villain will be constructed and dangled in front of the attention-deficit public.
DEAR LEADER: ‘The trap is set, comrades!’
Meanwhile in France, several young radical Muslims have been attacking their host society, attempting to murder French police officers and Christmas shoppers. As has become standard fare in our era of political correctness, the French government quickly sought to dismiss thecosplay jihadists as having nothing to do with terrorism, casting them instead as a random assortment of mentally ill individuals senselessly lashing out. Similar ISIS-inspired escapades by marginal, ressentiment-driven characters have transpired in recent months, not only in France, but also in Canada, the United States, and Australia. Government authorities in these nations were equally quick to dismiss such attacks by self-styled holy warriors as aberrations that should not be seen as part of some wider pattern, lest the West’s entire secular multicultural project come under deeper scrutiny.
It is in this environment that the 20th century German philosopher Josef Pieper observed that while modern man is ‘looking out for the powers of corruption in a mistaken direction,’ the lords of the technocracy ‘establish their rule before his eyes.’ Modern man is diverted down a multitude of false paths toward dead ends, but he remains all too often oblivious to what is happening right under his very nose. His ignorance, often willful, lends strength to those who would seek even more power to control and manipulate him.

This post was published at 21st Century Wire on JANUARY 1, 2015.