Pound rises 1% against dollar after poll tips Tories to win most seats

FTSE 100 also set to rise, say traders, after 6am prediction that David Cameron will be able to command 325 Conservative MPs with Labour on 232

The pound has hit its highest level since late February after the Conservatives emerged as the winner from the general election.

Sterling surged by 1.75% to $1.55, its highest level since late February, after an exit poll predicted that the Tories would be the largest party.

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In A Cop Culture, The Bill Of Rights Doesn’t Amount To Much

Submitted by John Whitehead via The Rutherford Institute,

Police officers are more likely to be struck by lightning than be held financially accountable for their actions.—Law professor Joanna C. Schwartz (paraphrased)

“In a democratic society,” observed Oakland police chief Sean Whent, “people have a say in how they are policed.”

Unfortunately, if you can be kicked, punched, tasered, shot, intimidated, harassed, stripped, searched, brutalized, terrorized, wrongfully arrested, and even killed by a police officer, and that officer is never held accountable for violating your rights and his oath of office to serve and protect, never forced to make amends, never told that what he did was wrong, and never made to change his modus operandi, then you don’t live in a constitutional republic.

You live in a police state.

It doesn’t even matter that “crime is at historic lows and most cities are safer than they have been in generations, for residents and officers alike,” as the New York Times reports.

What matters is whether you’re going to make it through a police confrontation alive and with your health and freedoms intact. For a growing number of Americans, those confrontations do not end well.

As David O. Brown, the Dallas chief of police, noted: “Sometimes it seems like our young officers want to get into an athletic event with people they want to arrest. They have a ‘don’t retreat’ mentality. They feel like they’re warriors and they can’t back down when someone is running from them, no matter how minor the underlying crime is.”

Making matters worse, in the cop culture that is America today, the Bill of Rights doesn’t amount to much. Unless, that is, it’s the Law Enforcement Officers’ Bill of Rights (LEOBoR), which protects police officers from being subjected to the kinds of debilitating indignities heaped upon the average citizen.

Most Americans, oblivious about their own rights, aren’t even aware that police officers have their own Bill of Rights. Yet at the same time that our own protections against government abuses have been reduced to little more than historic window dressing,

In Most Countries, 40 Hours + Minimum Wage = Poverty

Last week, we noted that Democratic lawmakers in the US are pushing for what they call “$12 by ’20” which, as the name implies, is an effort to raise the minimum wage to $12/hour over the course of the next five years. Republicans argue that if Democrats got their wish and the pay floor were increased by nearly 70%, it would do more harm than good for low-income Americans as the number of jobs that would be lost as a result of employers cutting back in the face of dramatically higher labor costs would offset the benefit that accrues to the workers who are lucky enough to keep their jobs.

US Approves Saudi Use Of Banned Cluster Bombs (But Only If They’re Extra Careful)

Following a report on Sunday, where Human Rights Watch said video and photographic evidence showed that Saudi Arabia used cluster bombs near villages in Yemen’s Saada Province at least two separate times, the US State Department said it is “looking into” the allegations but, as Foreign Policy reports, said the notoriously imprecise weapon — banned by much of the world — could still have an appropriate role to play in Riyadh’s U.S.-backed offensive (as long as it was used carefully).

Human Rights Watch details credible evidence indicates that the Saudi-led coalition used banned cluster munitions supplied by the United States in airstrikes against Houthi forces in Yemen, Human Rights Watch said today.

Cluster munitions pose long-term dangers to civilians and are prohibited by a 2008 treaty adopted by 116 countries, though not Saudi Arabia, Yemen, or the United States.

Insitutional Corruption is America’s Main Problem

The Cop Is On the Take

Government corruption has become rampant:

Senior SEC employees spent up to 8 hours a day surfing porn sites instead of cracking down on financial crimes

Nuclear Regulatory Commission workers watch porn instead of cracking down on unsafe conditions at nuclear plants

An EPA employee who downloaded 7,000 porn files, then spent 2-6 hours each workdaywatching porn. He’s been doing it for years … but the EPA never fired him. Another EPA employeeharassed 16 women co-workers … and then was promoted to a higher-paying job with more responsibility, where he harassed more women

NSA spies pass around homemade sexual videos and pictures they’ve collected from spying on the American people

NSA employees have also been caught using their mass surveillance powers to spy on love interests, such as girlfriends, obsessions or former wives … and to eavesdrop on American soldiers’ intimate conversations with their wives back home. And see this (“routinely shared salacious or tantalizing phone calls that had been intercepted” … “‘Hey, check this out … there’s good phone sex’”)

An employee of the Transportation Security Administration admitted that TSA agents share – and laugh at – nude scans of passengers.  Another TSA employee says that screeners make excuses so they can grope and fondle travelers that they’re attracted to

Investigators from the Treasury’s Office of the Inspector General found that some of the regulator’s employees surfed erotic websites, hired prostitutes and accepted gifts from bank executives … instead of actually working to help the economy

The Minerals Management Service – the regulator charged with overseeing BP and other oil companies to ensure that oil spills don’t occur – was riddled with “a culture of substance abuse and promiscuity”, which included “sex with industry contacts

Agents for the Drug Enforcement Agency had dozens of sex parties with prostitutes hired by the drug cartels they were supposed to stop (they also received moneygifts and weapons from drug cartel members)

Pentagon employees used government credit cards to pay for adult “escorts” (i.e. prostitutes) and to gamble

Federal agents with the Drug Enforcement Administration and Secret Service investigating Bitcoin money laundering extorted and stole over $1 million in Bitcoin

The IRS gave promotions to employees who were themselves tax cheats

The Commodity Futures Trading Commission has conspired with big banks to manipulate commodities prices for decades

The government-sponsored rating agencies committed massive fraud (and see this)

The Treasury department allowed banks to “cook their books”

Regulators knew of and allowed the use of debt-hiding accounting tricks by the big banks

The Secretary of Treasury (Tim Geithner) was complicit in Lehman’s accounting fraud, (and see this)

The former chief accountant for the SEC says that Bernanke and Paulson broke the law and should be prosecuted

The government knew about mortgage fraud a long time ago. For example, the FBI warned of an “epidemic” of mortgage fraud in 2004. However, the FBI, DOJ and other government agencies then stood down and did nothing. See this and this. For example, the Federal Reserve turned its cheek and allowed massive fraud, and the SEC has repeatedly ignored accounting fraud. Indeed, Alan Greenspan took the position that fraud could never happen

Paulson and Bernanke falsely stated that the big banks receiving Tarp money were healthy, when they were not. The Treasury Secretary also falsely told Congress that the bailouts would be used to dispose of toxic assets … but then used the money for something else entirely

A high-level Federal Reserve official says quantitative easing is “the greatest backdoor Wall Street bailout of all time

The SEC has been shredding Wall Street documents for decades to help the big banks cover up their fraud

The non-partisan Government Accountability Office calls the Fed corrupt and riddled with conflicts of interest. Nobel prize-winning economist Joe Stiglitz says the World Bank would view any country which had a banking structure like the Fed as being corrupt and untrustworthy. The former vice president at the Federal Reserve Bank of Dallas said said he worried that the failure of the government to provide more information about its rescue spending could signal corruption. “Nontransparency in government programs is always associated with corruption in other countries, so I don’t see why it wouldn’t be here,” he said

Arguably, both the Bush and Obama administrations broke the law by refusing to close insolvent banks

Congress may have covered up illegal tax breaks for the big banks

Police have been busted framing innocent people

Warmongerers in the U.S. government knowingly and intentionally lied us into a war of aggression in Iraq. The former head of the Joint Chiefs of Staff – the highest ranking military officer in the United States – said that the Iraq war was “based on a series of lies”. The same is true in Libya and other wars

The government lied when it said it doesn’t conduct mass surveillance on Americans, and then lied again when it said that spying was aimed at protecting America against terrorists

The government also lied when it said American doesn’t torture (and see this), and then lied once again when it said torture was aimed at protecting America against terrorists

The government made sure that false claims were made about the amount of oil spilled by BP in the Gulf

The government has framed whistleblowers with false evidence

The Pentagon falsely smeared USA Today reporters because they investigated illegal Pentagon propaganda

When one of the most respected radiologists in America – the former head of the radiology department at Yale University – attempted to blow the whistle on the fact that the FDA had approved a medical device manufactured by General Electric because it put out massive amounts of radiation, the FDA installed spyware to record his private emails and surfing activities (including installing cameras to snap pictures of his screen), and then used the information to smear him and other whistleblowers

In an effort to protect Bank of America from the threatened Wikileaks expose of wrongdoing – theDepartment of Justice told Bank of America to a hire a specific hardball-playing law firm to assemble a team to take down WikiLeaks (and see this)

The Bush White House worked hard to smear CIA officers, bloggers and anyone else who criticized the Iraq war

Corruption at the FBI lab led to the execution of scores of innocent people

The FBI smeared top scientists who pointed out the numerous holes in its anthrax case. Indeed, the head of the FBI’s investigation agrees that corruption was rampant
Terror attacks such as 9/11, the Boston Marathon bombing and the Texas shooting allhappened because of pervasive corruption in our intelligence agencies

The biggest companies own the D.C. politicians. Indeed, the head of the economics department at George Mason University has pointed out that it is unfair to call politicians “prostitutes”. They are in factpimps … selling out the American people for a price.

Government regulators have become so corrupted and “captured” by those they regulate that Americansknow that the cop is on the take. Institutional corruption is killing people’s trust in our government and our institutions.

Indeed, America is no longer a democracy or republic … it’s officially an oligarchy.

The allowance of unlimited campaign spending allows the oligarchs to purchase politicians more directly than ever. Moreover, there are two systems of justice in America … one for the big banks and other fatcats, and one for everyone else.

Big Corporations Are Also Thoroughly Corrupt

But the private sector is no better … for example, the big banks have literally turned into criminal syndicates.

Wall Street and giant corporations are literally manipulating every single market.

And the big corporations are cutting corners to make an extra penny … wrecking havoc with their carelessness. For example:

Fracking companies dumped 3 billion gallons of highly-toxic waste into California’s drinking water supply. Fracking is polluting water all over the country. A study published in the journal Ground Water predicts that the highly-toxic fluids used in fracking can migrate to aquifers within a few short years. In addition, it is now official that fracking can cause earthquakes

Yet fracking companies are using military psychological operations techniques to discredit opponents(and see this)

Monsanto has claimed for decades that Roundup is safe, but the World Health Organization just said that it probably causes cancer. Monsanto forbids independent scientists from testing its GMO crops for safety, and attacks the computers of people who oppose GMO foods, sue small farmers when Monsanto GMO crops drift onto their fields

Big farmers are drenching their crops with Roundup right before harvest … to save a buck

Big food companies work hand-in-glove with the government to dish up unhealthy food

BP’s criminal negligence led to the giant Gulf oil spill

We’ve Forgotten the Lessons of History

The real problem is that we need to learn a little history:

We’ve known for thousands of years that – when criminals are not punished – crime spreads

We’ve known for hundreds of years that the failure to punish financial fraud destroys economies, as it destroys all trust in the financial system

We’ve known for centuries that powerful people – unless held to account – will get together and steal from everyone else

Beyond Partisan Politics

Liberals and conservatives tend to blame our country’s problems on different factors … but they are all connected.

The real problem is the malignant, symbiotic relationship between big corporations and big government.