A burst of pure beauty in song

View this video clip of Patty Griffin and Natalie Maines singing a song called Mary, from the Tsunami Relief Concert.

Great video of black bear twirling a staff like a kung-fu artist

From the front lines of the currency wars

In a posting from the Gold Anti-Trust Action Committee (www.gata.org)

Gold will outlive dollar once slaughter comes

John Hathaway 
writes –

The world’s monetary system is in the process of melting down. We have entered the endgame for the dollar as the dominant reserve currency, but most investors and policy makers are unaware of the implications. The only questions are how long the denouement of the dollar reserve system will last, and how much more damage will be inflicted by new rounds of quantitative easing or more radical monetary measures to prop up the system.Whether prolonged or sudden, the transition to a stable monetary system will become possible only when the shortcomings of the status quo become unbearable. Such a transition is, by definition, nonlinear. So central-bank soothsaying based on the extrapolation of historical data and the repetition of conventional wisdom offers no guidance on what lies ahead.

For the remainder of the article read this: http://www.bloomberg.com/news/2010-10-29/gold-will-outlive-dollar-once-slaughter-comes-commentary-by-john-hathaway.html

While there are plenty of media pundits who proclaim that gold is just another bubble, I myself agree with the folks at GATA and elsewhere who see the currency wars as just another aspect, although a significant one for ordinary folks, of the systemic economic/ecological/energy crisis. In my opinion, to navigate the uncertain times ahead, it certainly would be prudent for all to accumulate some gold reserves (real gold, not ETFs or gold stocks only).

Three very powerful new films on political themes

As most people know there’s been an upsurge in new films, either documentary, or fact-based feature films, in recent years – perhaps facilitated by the rise of inexpensive new digital film technology. Here are three that impressed me with their brilliant fearlessness and clear-eyed exposing of deceit in the corridors of power. I can’t recommend them highly enough for anyone wanting to understand our present situation.

Collapse is an 80 min. documentary (made by Chris Smith, who also made “American Movie”) consisting entirely of a long interview with Michael Ruppert on the collapse of civilization being brought about by the collision of the industrial energy economy based on oil and the inevitable decline of global oil supplies. Ruppert is the former LA police detective who in the 1980s exposed the CIA’s drug trafficking into the inner cities; subsequently wrote Crossing the Rubicon, a massive, documented indictment of the high-level conspiracies behind 9/11; and was one of the few who accurately predicted the 2008 financial collapse. Although it may be hard to imagine that a prolonged interview with one man talking could hold our interest, this movie (and the book that goes with it) is, as Richard Heinberg says “incendiary, outrageous, shocking – and true.” You can get it at www.collapsemovie.com or www.mpimedia.com.

Inside Job (made by Charles Ferguson, who also made “No End In Sight”), exposes the shocking truth behind the 2008 global financial meltdown, at a cost of over $20 trillion, which resulted in millions of people losing their homes and jobs. Through extensive research and interviews with major financial insiders, politicians and journalists, Inside Job traces the rise of a rogue industry and unveils the corrosive relationships which have corrupted politics, regulation and academia. The movie does a great job of explaining the complex shell games of the Wall Street insiders that led to the continuing collapse of the mainstream, middle-class economy, while stupendously enriching a small number of white collar gangsters and their servants in congress and the government.

Fair Game (made by Doug Liman) tells the story of CIA agent Valerie Plame, who was outed by Dick Cheney’s henchman Scooter Libby, because her husband, Ambassador Joe Wilson, exposed the Bush administration’s lies about Iraq producing nuclear weapons. Wilson went to Niger, where the uranium yellow cake supposedly came from and then went public with his accusations – leading to pique and embarrassment for Karl Rove, Dick Cheney and their allies, who broke the law by outing a functioning CIA agent. The film stars Naomi Watts as Valerie Plame and Sean Penn as Joe Wilson. It’s a terrific and true story that shows the little-known private and non-glamorous world of secret agents, and represented a rare and appreciated breakthrough for truth and justice. I saw it first at the Mill Valley Film Festival, but it’s now in theatres. Well worth watching.